1up.com recently just did a piece on the top five classic video game cartoons discussing games I never even knew had cartoons (Frogger? Really?). Well, at my old age of 25, I happen to remember some of the video game cartoons of MY generation, too, and I’ve compiled them below. And sorry, Link, all the, “Well, excuuuuuse me, Princess’” in the world couldn’t get you on this list. Your show was absolutely TERRIBLE!
5. Double Dragon
While the movie for Double Dragon was absolutely ludicrous and couldn’t have been further from the game, the TV show was even wilder, implementing some wacky nonsense about the Mark of the Dragon and the Power of the Shadow. The only thing the game and the show had in common was that there were two brothers named Billy and Jimmy Lee, and that’s it. Still, the show was pretty decent and I do remember really digging it when I was younger. Check out the clip below to sing along to the song I must to have annoyed the hell out of my family with when I was younger.
4. Mega Man
While the Mega Man cartoon did make the blue bomber look especially cool (the game made him look like a goofy robot kid with a gun for a hand, not a badass flipping super ninja), the show DID stay pretty true to the game, which is a plus. All of your favorite characters were there - Rush, Roll, Protoman, Dr. Light — and all of them contributed to the narrative in a major way. In fact, I’d even say that the Mega Man cartoon could even be included in the overall canon of the video game series. That is, of course, if you could actually make head or tails of it, as Mega Man’s had more side stories and craziness than ABC’s Lost. Check out the ultra-cool intro below, though, to see what I mean about the ninja-ness.
3. Earthworm Jim
Voiced by Homer Simpson himself (Dan Castlellaneta), Earthworm Jim was actually just as quirky a show as it was a game. Introducing Evil Jim to the fray (Who later became a character in the game outright), the show actually had real potential before it ended its run after a second season. It was a really fun show and it was DEFINITELY much better than that piece of crap, one episode Battletoads cartoon.
2. Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog
Did you know that the Blue Spikey One actually had TWO cartoons around the same time? There was this one, with Sonic voiced by Jaleel “Steve Urkel” White, and another one where he had some oddball friends who added nothing at all to the show. This one was by far the superior as it wasn’t serious or trying to be ultra-cool. In fact, Sonic’s only REAL concern in this show was running around with his buddy, Tails, and eating chili dogs (a delight I didn’t even know existed before this show). This cartoon was one of my favorites, by far.
1. The Super Mario Bros. Super Show
Say what you will about the atrocious Legend of Zelda cartoon that accompanied it on every Friday, The Super Mario Bros. Super Show is by far the greatest video game-related cartoon to ever grace the airwaves. Featuring both live-action (Captain Lou Albano!) and animation, it’s almost unfair to put it up on this list with the others because it was almost two shows in one. And while the cartoon was pretty subpar (It was really in the vein of the second game, being that the princess and Toad were also main characters), the live-action stuff was an absolute RIOT back when I was like, 12 or 14. Hey, Paisanos! This show was the best!