famous cartoon characters

Famous Cartoon Characters

Famous Cartoon Characters & Animals from Comic Books, TV Shows & Movies

List of famous cartoon characters including the Marvel comic superheroes (mostly now Hollywood movie stars) along with classic and ground breaking cartoon characters such as Prince Valiant which Edward, duke of Windsor, called:

…the greatest contribution to English literature in the past hundred years.

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Famous Cartoon Characters Author/s Since Background / Plots / Trivia Related characters from the original comics
Asterix René Goscinny & Uderzo Alberto. 1959 French cartoon set in a village in Gaul around 50 BC. Sidekick Obelix. Druid Getafix, Chief Vitalstatistix, dog Dogmatix, Julius Caesar. Most popular of all french famous cartoon characters.
Batman and Robin Bob Kane and Bill Finger. 1939 Set in fictional US Gotham city Batman, alias Bruce Wayne, fights with sidekick Robin against evil foes. Batgirl, reporter Vicki Vale. Foes included The Joker, The Riddler, Catwoman, Poison Ivy, Professor Hugo Strange, Clayface and others. The most famous duo of famous cartoon characters originally from a comic book.
Beavis and Butt-head Mike Judge. 1993 Animated TV series about two socially inept teenagers living in the fictional town of Highland, Texas with no parental input. They’re dim-witted, bored, rock fans. They watch rock videos which are either cool or sucks. At Highland High School: Nerdy alt rock girl Daria Morgendorffer, Stewart Stevenson, a fat wimpy nerd and wannabe friend, teacher David Van Driessen, who tries to be helpful, Coach Bradley Buzzcut hates them, as does Principle McVicker. There’s also Tom Anderson their elderly neighbor and Todd Ianuzzi a deadbeat criminal.
Benjamin the Elephant Elfie Donnelly. 1977 German animated children’s TV show about Benjamin, a talking elephant in Newtown Zoo, who takes on new roles and discovers new places. Friend Otto. Zoo director and animal lover Herr Tierlieb. Karl the keeper.
Bibi Blocksberg Elfie Donnelly. 1980 German animated TV show (originally a radio drama) following the magical adventures of Bibl, a mischievous witch, and her friends. Parents Bernard and Barbara (also a witch), Grandma Grete. Friends Moni and Florian. Antagonist is the mayor of Neustadt.
Bugs Bunny Chuck Jones, T. Avery. 1938 Bugs Bunny is a rabbit with a punchline What’s up Doc? Roadrunner & Wile E. Coyote, Daffy Duck, Speedy Gonzales.
Calimero Toei Animation. 1963 Follows the mystery solving adventures of Calimero, an anime chicken that wears half an eggshell as a hat, and his friends. Originally Italian, popular in Japan and some European countries. Priscilla, Calimero’s girlfriend. Mr Owl, Deppa and Buta.
Captain Future Edmond Hamilton
Nedor Comics.
1940 & 1978 Captain Future, alias Curtis Newton, was a pulp magazine superhero with superpowers who flew through space overcoming problems and space villains.
In 1978 an anime version of Captain Future, based on the original, was produced in Japan and broadcast worldwide. Nedor Comics also created Captain Future, the alter ego of scientist Andrew Bryant, who used his superpowers to fight crime with the help of his girlfriend.
Professor Simon Wright, robot Grag, android Otho, Joan Randall, Marshall Ezra Gurney and Ul Quorn.
Grace Adams of the Agatha Detective Agency, girlfriend of Andrew Bryant.
Doctor Snuggles Jeffrey O’Kelly
(Richard Carpenter, Paul Halas, Douglas Adams, John Lloyd, Loek Kessels).
1979 Animated British TV show about the amiable and elderly inventor Doctor Snuggles. He travels on a talking umbrella and pogo stick and in a wooden spaceship called Dreamy Boom Boom”. His adventures typically involve dealing with his arch enemy Professor Emerald. Housekeeper Miss Nettles, Dennis the badger, Knobby mouse, Matilda the housekeeping robot. Professor Emerald, crazy magician and arch enemy.
Donald Duck Walt Disney 1934 Cheeky animated cartoon duck character with a distinctive voice generated using the inner cheeks (Buccal speech). Typically dressed as a sailor and starred in a comedy trio with Goofy and Mickey Mouse. His nickname is Don and his full name is Donald Fauntleroy Duck. His fiancée is Daisy Duck. Nephews Huey, Dewey and Louie. Uncle Scrooge McDuck. Cousin Gladstone Gander, the Beagle Boys. Inventor Gyro Gearloose, crook John Rockerduck, witch Magica de Spell. Arch enemy Black Pete.
Flintstones, The William Hanna and Joseph Barbera. 1959 Animated comedy cartoon set in the stone age in a town called Bedrock centered around the Flintstone family. Fred’s yabba dabba doo! became a hallmark of the show. Fred (main character), Wilma (wife), Pebbles (daughter) Flintstone, Barney (neighbor and best friend) and Betty Rubble, Dino (sauropod dinosaur/family pet).
Flash Gordon Alex Raymond. 1934 Handsome and debonair cartoon superhero Flash Gordon, together with his companions, helps saves earth. Companion Dale Arden (Camille is some countries) and scientist Doctor Hans Zarkov. Princess Aura, Prince Vultan, Prince Barin. Arch enemy Ming the Merciless.
Garfield Jim Davis. 1978 Garfied is a lazy and greedy cat that annoys its owner, Jon Arbuckle Odie the dog and Arlene the cat. Best friend: Pooky the teddy bear.
Inspector Gadget Andy Heyword, Jean Chalopin, Bruno Bianchi. 1983 Tongue in cheek animated TV series (and movie) following the adventures of Inspector Gadget, a dim-witted detective with gadgets built into his body. The village policeman Gadget, his niece Penny and Brain the dog. Dr. Claw is his nemesis.
Bolek and Lolek
(Bennie and Lennie, Jym & Jam)
Alfred Ledwig. 1962 Animated Polish TV comedy (and films) about two brothers who go on mostly outdoor adventures around the world. Tola, a cute girl with orange hair and pigtails who lives in the forest, is the love interest for both brothers.
Little Mermaid, The Hans Christian Andersen,
Walt Disney Company.
1837,
1989
Originally a fairy tale about a mermaid who gives her life for the love of a human prince and a soul. Released as an animated Disney film in 1989. Ariel, her father, King Triton, Ursula, Prince Eric, Sebastian the crab, Flounder the fish and Scuttle the seagull.
Lucky Luke Morris (de Bevere). 1946 Belgian comic book set in the American west starring cowboy Lucky Luke who could shoot faster than his shadow. His horse Jolly Jumper. Rantanplan his stupid dog. He deals with the bumbling Dalton brothers, Joe, William, Jack and Averell and meets many historical wild west characters including Billy the Kid and Calamity Jane.
Mickey Mouse Walt Disney. 1928 First appeared in a short film called Steamboat Willie in 1928 then as a comic strip character in 1930. Originally intended as Mortimer after childhood pet. Girlfriend Minnie, friends Goofy, Daisy, Donald, Pluto the dog, enemy Black Pete. The first of all famous cartoon characters. See also Minnie Mouse.
Minnie Mouse Walt Disney. 1928 Minnie first appeared in a comic strip in 1930. Father Marcus Mouse introduced her as Minerva Mouse, although this is rarely used. See also Mickey Mouse.
One Hundred and One Dalmatians Walt Disney. 1961 Dalmatians Pongo and Perdita have 15 puppies and Cruella De Vil offers to buy them but their owner Roger refuses so she has them kidnapped. Pongo, male Dalmatian and Perdita female Dalmatian have 15 puppies. They are helped by Colonel, a sheepdog, Sergeant Tibbs, a tabby cat and Captain, a gray horse. The villain is Cruella De Vil.
Peanuts Charles M. Schulz. 1947 American comic strip which enjoyed worldwide success centered around timid eight year old Charlie Brown and a host of other famous cartoon characters. Charlie’s sister Sally Brown, his pet dog Snoopy, Woodstock, a small bird and friends Lucy, Linus, Schroeder, Marcie, Pigpen and Franklin.
Popeye the Sailor Man Elzie Crisler Segar. 1919 Adventures of Popeye, a sailor who loves spinach which gives him superhuman strength. Mistress Olive Oyl, baby Swee’ Peam friend Wimpy and arch enemy and rival for Olive’s affections Bluto aka Brutus.
Prince Valiant Hal Foster. 1937 Popular and long running US comic strip loosely set in the days of King Arthur and Camelot. This epic tale follows Val, exiled from Thule to Britain from a young boy to fatherhood. It’s still published today.
Various adaptations include a 1954 film and an animated TV series called The Legend of Prince Valiant.
Val is the son of King Aguar. Val marries Aleta, Queen of the Misty Isles. His friends include Sir Gawain, King Arthur and Merlin the magician. His Singing Sword has featured in a Bugs Bunny Prince Violent cartoon and features in a scene in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?.
Pumuckl
Ellis Kaut. 1978 Pumucki is a young red-haired Kobold (Imp) who is invisible to everyone apart from Meister Eder, an elderly carpenter, with whom he lives and formed a close friendship. First popularized in a German radio play. Mrs Eichinger and Mr Bernbacher. One of the most famous cartoon characters in Germany.
Road Runner Chuck Jones, Michael Maltese. 1949 Loony Tunes cartoon centered around The Road Runner (Accelerati Incredibilus / Speedipus Rex etc.) based on roadrunner fast-running ground cuckoo birds. The Road Runner is relentlessly pursued by Wile E. Coyote but never caught – which is the recurring plot and magic of these cartoons. The Road Runner doesn’t talk but chirrups a signature meep, meep sound. Together with Wile E. Coyote this Loony Tunes duo are both famous cartoon characters.
Rocky & Bullwinkle Show, The
Jay Ward, Alex Anderson and Bill Scott. 1959 Cult TV series set in the fictional town of Frostbite Falls, Minnesota (based on International Falls, Minnesota). It’s a variety show which follows the adventures of Bullwinkle moose and Rocky the flying squirrel and other segments.
There’s also a film The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle (2000) and a video game.
Flying squirrel Rocket Rocky J. Squirrel and his easy going but dim-witted best friend Bullwinkle J. Moose fight villains Boris Badenov and Natasha Fatale, agents of Pottsylvania, who work for Mr Big and Fearless Leader. Peabody’s Improbable History segment features Mister Peabody, a smart beagle dog, who adopts an orphan boy called Sherman and they travel through time together. There’s also little green men from the moon: Gidney and Cloyd. Captain (of S.S. Andalusia) Peter Wrongway Peachfuzz, onlookers Edgar and Chauncy and more.
Pink Panther, The Friz Freleng & DePatie. 1963 The Pink Panther cartoon character features in the title and closing sequences of the Pink Panther comedy movies starring Peter Sellers which led to Pink Panther comic books and television cartoons series. Pink Panther, Inspector Clouseau, Dudu, the Ant and the Aardvark. A TV show which turned into famous cartoon characters in comic books.
Porky Pig Bob Clampett. 1936 Porky Pig is a popular animated cartoon Looney Tunes character who appeared in 153 cartoons. His stutter was often used to end shows with Th-th-th-that’s all folks! The Porky Pig character evolved from a child with a family to a young adult. He was the lead character in some cartoons, a protagonist in others, but most often as Daffy Duck’s sidekick. Porky pig was usually the loyal sidekick to Daffy Duck but also teams up with Sylvester the Cat. In three cartoons Porky Pig had a family including his father Phineas and an unnamed mom.
Powerpuff Girls, The
Craig McCracken. 1998 American animated TV series which follows the crime busting exploits of three girls with superpowers Blossom, Bubbles and Buttercup. They were created by their father Professor Utonium. The action is centered on the fictional US city of Townsville where they help the Mayor fight crime using their superpowers.
  • Blossom: Long red hair with a red bow (personality ingredient: everything nice, color: pink, unique power: her breath can freeze objects) is the commander and leader.
  • Bubbles: Short blonde hair with two pigtails (personality ingredient: sugar, color: blue, unique power: her voice can emit supersonic waves) she loves animals and can communicate with them and speak foreign languages. She’s the joy and the laughter.
  • Buttercup: Tomboy with short black hair in a flip (personality ingredient: spice, color: green, no unique power) she’s all action and the toughest fighter.
Simpsons, The Matt Groening. 1987 The Simpsons is an animated sitcom centered around Homer Simpson, the father of the dysfunctional middle class Simpsons family. They live in the fictional American town of Springfield. Homer’s wife is Marge Simpson, children Bart, Lisa and Maggie Simpson, the family pet dog Santa’s Little Helper and pet cats Snowball I and II. Neighbors Edna Krabappel and Nedward Ned Flanders. Homer’s Boss Mr Burns. Some of the most famous cartoon characters worldwide.
Smurfs, The Pierre Culliford (Peyo). 1958 The Smurfs, originally Belgian comic characters, are a colony of fictitious small blue gnome-like creatures. They live in mushroom shaped houses in a forest. The Smurfs comical adventures have subsequently featured in Smurf movies and TV shows. 100 Smurfs including Papa, Grandpa, Smurfette and wizard Gargamel.
South Park Trey Parker and Matt Stone. 1997 South Park is a surreal animated TV sitcom featuring adult language and black comedy. Set in the small fictional town of South Park, Colorado. The show follows the adventures of four boys who often act as the voice of reason when the adults panic. Stan Marsh is an average American 4th grader and best friends with jewish Kyle Broflovski. Eric Cartman is a loud, obese, racist whose anti-semitic views puts him increasing at odds with Kyle. Parka wearing Kenny McCormick dies in most episodes only to return in the next without explanation.
Speedy Gonzales Robert McKimson. 1953 Animated cat and mouse chase cartoon series featuring Speedy Gonzales The fastest mouse in Mexico sporting a sombrero chased by Sylvester the cat. Sylvester the Cat who, in related cartoons, also chases Tweety Bird and Hippety Hopper.
Spider-Man Stan Lee & Steve Ditko. 1962 Spiderman is a Marvel comic character centered on costumed superhero Spiderman, alias orphan Peter Parker, who struggles to come to terms with his web superpowers and fighting crime. Father Richard, Mary Jane (ex-wife). Enemies: Green Goblin, Kingpin, Sandman, Lizard etc.
SpongeBob Stephen Hillenburg. 1998 Animated TV series about the adventures of SpongeBob SquarePants living in Bikini Bottom, a fictional underwater city. SpongeBob SquarePants, Patrick Star (starfish), Squidward Tentacles (octopus), Mr. Eugene H. Krabs (crab).
Superman J. Siegel & Joe Shuster. 1938 Costume superhero Superman, alias journalist Clark Kent, lives in the fictional city Metropolis. His superpowers can be weakened by green kryptonite. There are many cartoon, TV and movie superman stories and spin-offs. Loves colleague Lois Lane. Enemies include Lex Luthor, Brainiac and Mr Mxyzptik.
Sylvester the Cat Friz Freleng 1939 Sylvester J. Pussycat Sr. is the full name of this Looney Tunes cartoon character tuxedo cat who never gives up chasing other famous cartoon characters. Sylvester has a lisp. Sylvester famously chases Tweety Bird, Speedy Gonzales, or Hippety Hopper. Sometimes paired with Porky Pig where he behaves as a scaredy cat. Sylvester’s catch phrase is Sufferin’ succotash!.
Tintin, The Adventures of Hergé (Georges Remi). 1929 Follows the adventures of Tintin, a novice reporter set in 20th century Belgium aided by his dog Snowy. Snowy (originally Milou) his fox terrier dog, cynical Captain Haddock, hard of hearing Professor Calculus and bumbling detectives Thomson and Thompson (originally Dupont et Dupond).
Tom and Jerry W. Hanna & J. Barbera. 1940 Animated cat and mouse chase cartoon series featuring Tom the cat and Jerry the mouse. Most of the time Tom chases Jerry but sometimes the tables are turned. Tom and Jerry were originally called Jasper and Jinx! Spike and Tyke bulldogs, alley cat Butch. Probably Hanna Barbera’s most famous cartoon characters.
Tweety Bird Bob Clampett, then Friz Freleng 1941 Tweety Bird is a Loony Tunes character based on  a baby yellow canary. The word Tweety was derived from the “tweet” noise chicks make. Tweety Bird’s catchphrase is I tawt I taw a puddy tat! then I did! I did taw a puddy tat!  Tweety started out mean but is mellower today and, for the most part, is happy to let Sylvester’s plots fail. Tweety Bird is generally pursued by Sylvester the Cat. Tweety Bird lives with granny (who is Emma Webster, another Looney Tunes character) and Hector the bulldog who is supposed to protect Tweety but is easily outwitted by Sylvester.
Vicky the Viking Runer Jonsson. 1972 Animated TV series popular in Germany, Austria, Holland and Japan. Centered around the life and adventures of Vicky, a clever boy, who helps his fellow Vikings outwit their rivals at every turn. His father Halvar, mother Ylva, love crush Ylvie. Tjure and Snorre. Rival Lord Sven the Terrible.
Wile E. Coyote Chuck Jones. 1949 Wile E. Coyote is a Loony Tunes character (Carnivorous Vulgaris/Famishus=Famishus etc.) obsessed with catching and eating the Road Runner – but that never happens. Coyote exclusively uses mail order products from the fictional Acme Corporation (derive d from Greek word meaning pinnacle) to catch the Road Runner but they always backfire. Typically Wile E. Coyote ends up going over a cliff and hitting the ground with a resulting dust cloud after he hits the ground. The cartoon was originally a parody of Tom and Jerry. See also The Road Runner. This Loony Tunes duo are both famous cartoon characters.
Winnie the Pooh A. A. Milne,
Walt Disney.
1966 The original stories are set in Ashdown Forest, near London, England about Pooh, a hunny loving bear, his human friend Christopher Robin (named after the author’s son), and his animal friends. The animated Disney productions include various TV shows and feature films. Christopher Robin (human) and animal friends, Piglet, Owl, Eeyore (donkey), Tigger (who loves to bounce) and Rabbit. One of the most famous cartoon characters in Britain.
Yogi Bear William Hanna, Joseph Barbera and Ed Benedict.  1958 The Yogi Bear Show included comic books, animated TV shows and films. Set in Jellystone Park where fast-talking Yogi thinks he’s smarter than the av-er-age bear! as he steals pic-a-nic baskets – but he’s probably not! Boo-Boo bear is Yogi’s best friend and companion who always tries to keep Yogi out of trouble. Girlfriend Cindy bear, speaks with a Southern accent. Antagonist head Ranger Smith.

Your Favorite Cartoon Character Isn’t Listed?

Maybe they didn’t make the cut? Maybe they’re in our list of famous TV animals? Or just maybe we haven’t heard of your favorite? ADDucate us by adding your comments below…


 

3 responses to “Famous Cartoon Characters”

  1. Natasha says:

    Could you please add some more modern Cartoon characters from movies? How about Cloudy with a chance of meatballs, Toy Story and where’s Frozen? Olaf the snowman is just awesome! My other favourite is Despicable Me because they have thousands of minions and I want to know the most popular minion name. Is it Kevin or is it Dave? However, I’m really liking this list because some of the cartoons take me back to my childhood,

    Thanks

  2. Joe says:

    Thanks for your comments Natasha!
    Most of the films you mention are too recent to be famous already BUT we’ll add Toy Story and keep an eye on the others.
    I’ve always hated South Park but when I was adding the plot line I was almost tempted to watch a few episodes!

  3. Natasha says:

    Oh I see, I suppose you should have a popular cartoon page as well as a famous one?

    Thanks Natasha

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