Top 10 Cartoons with Surprisingly Amazing and Complex Plots

The Top Ten
1 Avatar: The Last Airbender Avatar: The Last Airbender is an American animated television series that aired for three seasons on Nickelodeon from 2005 to 2008. Avatar: The Last Airbender is set in an Asiatic-like world in which some people are able to manipulate the classical elements by use of psychokinetic variants of Chinese martial arts, known as "bending". This show is often seen as one of the greatest cartoons of all time and is commonly thought to be an anime.

Want an example of a timeless kids cartoon? You found it. Stop looking, this is it.

The plot is straightfoward, but the world-building that happens is the real star of the show.

Really complex and lineal story, one of the best shows I ever seen!

The best, bar none. If you haven't watched it yet, do so.

2 Gravity Falls Gravity Falls is an American animated television series produced by Disney Television Animation that first aired on Disney Channel, and then on Disney XD from June 15, 2012 to February 15, 2016. The series follows the adventures of Dipper Pines and his twin sister Mabel in the fictional town of Gravity more.

Honestly, this series had an amazing plot as well as an immaculate character development. I absolutely love this show.

One of the most famous cartoon now days, and its totally worth it, have a well animation and really well worked story.

Gravity Falls is still one of my favorites and its just so amazing, I'm just sad it didn't last longer.

It has a surprisingly good story, it's pretty entertaining and the ending was amazing!

3 Steven Universe Steven Universe is an American animated television series created by Rebecca Sugar for Cartoon Network. The show's based around a young boy by the name of Steven Universe, who is a hybrid of a gem and a human. He lives with his gem friends, Garnet, Amethyst and Pearl.

I wouldn't Recommend watching Season 1 because of the slow phase story and character Development
But worth watching in the end. Season 2 in the other hand was great, the filler episodes kinda bit reduced. would be great if there's no filler episodes
Season 3 is the 2nd best season of Steven Universe (in my opinion) it was a little bit rushed but it has a lot of great episodes on it which has one of my favorite episode.
Season 4 is the 3rd best Season of Steven Universe (in my opinion)
There's a lot that I want to talk about this but the story is kinda slow but still worth watching

Season 5 is the Best Season of Steven Universe right now this is the reason why I watched all season of Steven Universe. the story, The Plot Twist if the season 1,2,3,4 is bad on your opinions then I'm going say this again it's all worth it in the end.

Steven Universe is now my top 1 cartoon show in 2018

Don't forget the music in Steven Universe It's Amazing.

If your looking for a show with a lot of plot, This is the right cartoon to pick. Season 1 is mainly charecter development, season 2 has way more plot and lots of mystery, season 3 has even more plot and action, season 4 has lots of new themes and season 5 is more space themed.

Steven Universe has evidence of its plots in its surroundings. The main characters all contribute to the story and the emotions between them. This. Is. A. Masterpiece!

The first season sets up a lot of characters, and doesn't quite get story driven until season two. But when it gets good, it gets good.

4 Adventure Time Adventure Time is an American animated television series created by Pendleton Ward for Cartoon Network. The series follows the adventures of a boy named Finn (voiced by Jeremy Shada) and his best friend and adoptive brother Jake (voiced by John DiMaggio)—a dog with the magical power to change shape and size at will. Finn and Jake live in the post-apocalyptic Land of Ooo. Throughout the show, they interact with the other main characters Princess Bubblegum (voiced by Hynden Walch), the Ice King (voiced by Tom Kenny), and Marceline the Vampire Queen (voiced by Olivia Olson). The series is based on a short produced for Nicktoons and Frederator Studios' animation incubator series Random! Cartoons. more.

Still remember how it all started as another of your run of the mill "random episode each week" and then over time it became this really serious linear storyline with deep character development.

Amazingly deep show with backstories for countless characters and locations that will have you pondering over each and every episode. Lots of deep emotion and character development as well.

Adventure time had one of ththr most complex story lines ever not just for a cartoon for a T.V. show over all there's so many different dimensions and plot lines and look holes.

The start of the new golden era in cartoon network, a really well done cartoon that deals with serious topics.

5 Batman Beyond
6 Dragon Ball Z Dragon Ball Z is a Japanese anime television series produced by Toei Animation. Dragon Ball Z follows the adventures of Goku who, along with the Z Warriors, defends the Earth against evil. The action adventures are entertaining and reinforce the concept of good versus evil. Dragon Ball Z teaches valuable more.
7 Star vs. the Forces of Evil "Star vs. the Forces of Evil" is an American animated television comedy produced by Disney Television Animation for Disney XD. It was created by Daron Nefcy and developed by Jordana Arkin and Dave Wasson. The series follows teenage magical princess from the dimension of Mewni Star Butterfly and her teenage human roommate and best friend from Earth Marco Diaz as they live their daily lives, go on adventures in other dimensions, and try to prevent the forces of evil from stealing Star's magic wand. The first episode aired on January 18, 2015 on Disney Channel but its first season officially premiered on Disney XD on March 30, 2015 and ended on September 21, 2015. The second season premiered on more.

Trust me. At first I didn't have much faith for this show being good. Its humor was good, but it lacked story at first. It didn't take long for me to realize it was Steven Universe all over again. Amazing story and great villains :D

This show started lacking after The Battle For Mewni, but before that it is amazing. And even after it started lacking a bit, it's still one of my favorites.

This is my favorite show of all time. The last few episodes were amazing, and it has an incredible character development.

I was really surprised when I watched this show. Surprisingly solid character development and linearity.

8 The Legend of Korra The Legend of Korra is an American animated television series that aired on the Nickelodeon television network from 2012 to 2014. It was created by Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dante DiMartino as a sequel to Avatar: The Last Airbender.

Great show, especially Season 1 with the mix of suspense, action and romance!

9 Danny Phantom Danny Phantom is an American animated series created by Butch Hartman for Nickelodeon. It was produced by Billionfold Studios and distributed in Canada by Nelvana, a Canadian animation company. The series follows a teenage boy who, after an accident with an unpredictable portal between the human world more.
10 Teen Titans Teen Titans is an American animated television series created by Glen Murakami, based on the DC Comics characters of the same name.

This show had an epic plot. It had a story arc for every character. Characters developed as more and more seasons progressed. It's the BEST SHOW EVER. Why isn't this higher? The show was very complex, yet funny and lighthearted at the same time. Each character had their own fatal flaw which made them who they really are. And besides, who DOESN'T want to see the cute chemistry between Robin and Star as the series progressed?

Love this show. Each season is basically an arc for each character. Too bad s6 was cancelled.

Very complex plot, with an amazing character development.

I need season 6.

The Contenders
11 The Dragon Prince
12 Scooby-Doo! Mystery, Inc. Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated is an American animated mystery comedy-drama series; the series serves as the eleventh incarnation of the Scooby-Doo media franchise created by Hanna-Barbera, as well as the first that was not originally run on Saturday mornings.

I like how this adaptation of Scooby Doo is different from the other ones.

This show was amazingly surprising and pretty shocking. And I loved it!

As far as surprisingly complex, this one takes the cake.

Hands down the best show ever! Deserves to be in the top 5.

13 Young Justice Young Justice is an American animated television series developed by Brandon Vietti and Greg Weisman for Cartoon Network.

Young Justice season 1 will forever be the best animated series to exist, though the quality of the seasons diminish as they go on, they always promise complex plots and a different view into the world of DC. Season 1 is very character centric, so you'll get attached to the team and all of their adventures.

Definitely one of the best cartoon story lines and surprisingly it isn't all Japanified and with the big eyes and the stupid tear drops.

AMAZING! The most complex and thought-out plot I've ever seen in a cartoon.

14 Cowboy Bebop Cowboy Bebop is a 1998 anime television series animated by Sunrise featuring a production team led by director Shinichirō Watanabe, screenwriter Keiko Nobumoto, character designer Toshihiro Kawamoto, mechanical designer Kimitoshi Yamane, and composer Yoko Kanno.

Highly recommended! The Dub is well done.

15 Invader Zim Invader Zim is an American animated television series created by Jhonen Vasquez for Nickelodeon. The series centers on an extraterrestrial named Zim from the planet Irk, and his mission to conquer Earth and enslave the human race along with his malfunctioning robot servant GIR.
16 She-Ra and the Princesses of Power
17 Ben 10 Ben 10 is a media franchise created by Man of Action Studios and produced by Cartoon Network Studios. The franchise revolves around a boy named Ben Tennyson who acquires a watch-like alien device, the Omnitrix, which allows him to transform into ten different alien creatures.

The world manages to feel real and lived in through all the insanity that happens in the show

18 Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts
19 Rick and Morty Rick and Morty is an American adult animated science fiction sitcom created by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon for Adult Swim.

Speechless... this is the most incredible and intellectual comedy cartoon that's ever been created. This is what inspired me to do animation.

20 Sword Art Online Sword Art Online is a series of Japanese light novels written by Reki Kawahara and illustrated by abec. In 2012, it received an anime adaptation produced by A-1 Pictures and the SAO Project, and is directed by Tomohiko Ito . The first season is divided into two arcs known as "Aincrad" and "Fairy Dance". It has also received a second season, titled Sword Art Online II.

Um, last I checked, Sword Art Online is a Japanese anime series, not an American cartoon. Eh, either way, Sword Art Online actually has a good and decent story despite all the garbage the haters have been going on about with their salty SAO hate parade.

It does have a pretty decent plot.
Also, to those who say this is not a cartoon, I have some big news for you.
It is a cartoon, just a japanese one. They never said the results on this page were limited to western animation.

21 The Amazing World of Gumball The Amazing World of Gumball is a British-Australian-German-American-Irish children's animated television series created by Ben Bocquelet for Cartoon Network.

I love the comedy in this one, and the different type of animation all in one, that make gumball a good worked and done cartoon

This is the best show ever. It deserves to be in the top 10.

22 The Owl House The Owl House is an American animated fantasy television series created by Dana Terrace that premiered on Disney Channel on January 10, 2020. The series stars the voices of Sarah-Nicole Robles, Wendie Malick, Alex Hirsch, Tati Gabrielle, Issac Ryan Brown, Mae Whitman, Cissy Jones, Matthew Rhys, Zeno Robinson, and Fryda Wolff.

The whole show was great and I am sad disney cut it short. Dana terrace did do an amazing job with thanks to them, for the future, and watching and dreaming. This whole show was a trip of laughs, cries, and screams of frustration lol. They were also one of the first shows on Disney to be open with LGBTQ representation!

23 Courage the Cowardly Dog Courage the Cowardly Dog is an American animated horror comedy television series created by John R. Dilworth for Cartoon Network as part of the network's Cartoon Cartoons block.

A dog with anxiety problems...well no but it seems like it, one of the old gold cartoons that will never get too old for anyone to stop enjoying it

Not only is this an amazing cartoon, it's also a horror comedy. Superb.

24 JoJo's Bizarre Adventures Jojo's Bizarre Adventure is an anime and manga franchise originally written by Hirohiko Araki. It centers around the perilous journey of the members of the legendary Joestar bloodline.
25 Star Wars: The Clone Wars Star Wars: The Clone Wars is an American 3D CGI animated television series created by George Lucas and produced by Lucasfilm Animation with the division Lucasfilm Animation Singapore, Lucasfilm and CGCG Inc.

Although some of the episodes are filler or overly kid friendly, the show overall is well written and surprisingly mature in tone, content, and themes. The voice acting is excellent, the animation is wildly more advanced than anything else on this list, and I can happily report that Clone Wars is some of the best Star Wars content around, and the second best show on this list.

Great character development and insight into the universe of the Prequels. Honestly, it makes me like them a bit more than the Original trilogy, if only because they feel like add-ons to this amazing show!

How has this not been added yet. Amazing show.

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