Cartoons with violence that we all love include The Legend Of Korra, Courage The Cowardly Dog, and The Ren & Stimpy Show. We have cherished cartoons for the happiness, fun, and laughter they bring. However, many of us are unaware of the darker side of cartoons – violence.
Violence has been a part of the industry since its inception and remains prevalent today.
In this blog post, we will discuss the most popular cartoons that feature violence.
Our Top 10 Picks for Most Violent Cartoons!
Physical violence and dark themes are not uncommon in children’s cartoons. Themes such as character death and mental distress are prevalent in this medium.
Despite carrying valuable lessons, these shows have a greater impact than traditional animated content intended for children.
14Metalocalypse Is An Aggressive Cartoon
Since its disappointing cancellation in 2015, this popular Adult Swim animation has amassed a cult following and a passionate fanbase eagerly anticipating new content.
Metalocalypse brilliantly and crudely parodied the metal genre and its culture, using a familiar style of humor to create a fresh and innovative premise.
The metal genre frequently features violence, and Metalocalypse satirizes this theme alongside its tropes, contributing to its distinct aesthetic.
13Aqua Teen Hunger Force
Aqua Teen Hunger Force is an animated television series aired on Adult Swim from 2000 to 2015. The show follows the misadventures of a trio of anthropomorphic fast food items: Master Shake, Frylock, and Meatwad. Despite being marketed as a comedy series, Aqua Teen Hunger Force frequently features violent and graphic content.
The show often uses violence to shock and surprise its audience. For example, in one episode, Master Shake accidentally shoots Meatwad in the face with a shotgun, resulting in a graphic and gory scene.
Another episode depicts Frylock’s violent murder by a character named Mothmonsterman. The show often utilizes over-the-top and absurd depictions of violence to elicit laughter from the audience.
12Family Guy Has Violent Theme Episodes
When it comes to TV shows that use violence as a central component of their comedy, Family Guy is often the first that comes to mind.
Building on the classic sitcom-parody formula of The Simpsons, Family Guy increases the shock value and cultural references, resulting in a show that relies heavily on violent cutaways and visual gags.
The show’s success speaks to its ability to capitalize on this theme, even after an initial cancellation, and maintain relevance today as a mega-hit.
11The Powerpuff Girls
Let’s turn our attention to The Powerpuff Girls, a children’s show that has gained considerable attention and popularity.
The show’s cool and uncomplicated characters, familiar animation, and unexpected violence brought together boys and girls of all ages, making it possibly the most diverse demographic in all kids’ shows.
The Powerpuff Girls achieved great success and sold violence to both boys and girls, even displaying blood in a children’s program, which is still uncommon.
For some kids, Invader Zim might have felt like a nightmare, and with good reason. The show included numerous unsettling plot lines and graphic imagery that could be incredibly upsetting.
Additionally, the leading character, Zim, was relentlessly mean-spirited and maniacal.
In one episode, he gouges a child’s eye to prevent his alien identity from being discovered. At the same time, in another equally disturbing installment, he turns Dib’s body inside out, revealing disgusting organs and bodily fluids.
Despite its creativity, young viewers often found the series too disturbing and aggressive to enjoy.
9Rick And Morty With Comedic Violence
As you may have already surmised, this list predominantly consists of entries from the Adult Swim channel, and for a good reason. Adult Swim is a leading source of adult animation and comedic violence.
One of this genre’s most recent and successful examples is the hit show, Rick and Morty.
The show follows the adventures of a brilliant granddad and his grandson, offering viewers lightning-fast dialogue and a range of violence, from cleverly executed to downright ridiculous, in the best possible way.
8The Ren & Stimpy
The Ren & Stimpy Show relied heavily on strange and disturbing visuals, making it challenging to find a cartoon that matched its level of graphic content. The series often incorporated blood, gore, and dismembered limbs into its episodes.
It was so violent that Nickelodeon refused to air the episode “Man’s Best Friend” due to its upsetting nature.
Ren, the show’s main character, frequently had breakdowns that led him to hurt himself and others. In one repulsive scene, he tugs out his bloody gums and beats himself senselessly with a hammer in another.
Despite being intended for children, the show had enough gore to make adult viewers shudder.
7South Park Can be Violent At Times
South Park employs humor and satire and is a popular animated television series. However, it sometimes tends to be violent and uses violence as a comedic tool to shock and amuse its audience.
Some viewers may find the violence excessive, but it is important to note that the show is intended for a mature audience and includes a warning for graphic content.
The violence is often over-the-top and cartoonish, which makes it less realistic and more comedic.
6The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack
The animated Cartoon Network series, The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, may sound whimsical, but it could be violent and gorier than expected.
With unsettling close-ups, mean-spirited characters, and frequent aggression, the show’s misadventures were more disturbing than some fans may remember.
One example is Doctor Barber, often shown in disgustingly graphic imagery.
In one instance, Flapjack finds him with a frothing red substance pouring out of his mouth while treating a patient. Additionally, Captain K’nuckles’ temper tantrums, which usually resulted in the explosion of his face, are unforgettable.
Drawn Together, an adult animated television series is notorious for its crude humor, sexual content, and extreme violence.
The show parodies reality television by combining animated characters from different genres, including a Disney-like princess, a superhero, a video game character, and a black-and-white cartoon.
The show utilizes violence as a comedic tool, with characters being dismembered, mutilated, and killed in various ways.
Characters frequently die and then return in the next episode without explanation. Despite its use of violence, the show has received criticism for being gratuitous and potentially offensive.
The show’s creators defend its use of violence, stating that it is meant to be over-the-top and cartoonish and viewers should not take it too seriously.
4The Simpsons Loves Aggression
The Simpsons, an animated television series on the air for over three decades, is widely considered one of the most successful and influential animated shows of all time. Although not typically associated with violent content, the show has faced criticism for its use of aggression and controversial themes.
The show often uses aggressive behavior and dark humor to elicit laughter from the audience, with characters engaging in fights, hurling insults, and other forms of aggressive behavior.
In one episode, for instance, Homer Simpson strangles his son, Bart, as a form of punishment, which drew criticism from some viewers.
The Simpsons tackled sensitive and controversial topics, including gun control, race relations, and politics. However, some critics accused certain episodes of promoting negative stereotypes or belittling serious issues.
For instance, they criticized an episode about immigration for portraying Latinx people as criminals.
Combining an eye-popping, gruesomely complex, and equally interesting visual explosion with a barrage of in-depth violence would make Adult Swim’s Superjail! a trippy, hellish, violent show.
It’s impressive for a cartoon show to be one of the most violent on TV, but to be one of the most violent shows on Adult Swim is an even greater achievement.
What truly sets this show apart is its ability to maintain a constant flow and hold the audience’s interest in every episode, making it a truly unforgettable visual experience.
2Beavis And Butt-Head Is a Cartoons With Violence
Beavis and Butt-Head, an animated television series aired on MTV from 1993 to 1997, depicts the misadventures of two adolescent boys engaged in mindless activities, including watching music videos.
The show is notorious for using violent humor and is often considered one of the most violent cartoons ever.
The show’s humor frequently revolves around the boys inflicting harm on themselves or others. In one episode, for example, Beavis sets his crotch on fire, resulting in a graphic and painful scene. In another episode, the boys are seen beating each other up, resulting in bloody noses and bruises.
1Happy Tree Friends
Happy Tree Friends, an animated television series, is notorious for its extreme violence and gore, despite appearing to be a children’s cartoon. Although the show features cutesy, anthropomorphic animals, it contains a warning for graphic content and is not intended for young viewers.
In each episode, a group of characters, including Cuddles, Giggles, and Flippy, find themselves in various misadventures that frequently result in gruesome and violent deaths.
The violence is over-the-top and cartoonish, with characters dismembered, crushed, and impaled in absurd ways. While some viewers may find the show’s violence amusing, others find it disturbing and offensive, particularly considering its target audience of children.
Critics have condemned the show for its gratuitous violence and potential desensitization of young viewers to violence and gore.