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 ...read more.

Perfect way to combine a simple plot that also adds in-depth parts that make it complex and awesome

One of my favorite shows. - Miauzer

The plot is straightfoward, but the world-building that happens is the real star of the show. - keycha1n

Amazing.

2 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 ...read more.
3 Batman Beyond
4 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 ...read more.

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

The best in overall

One of my favourite shows and has a great story

Illuminati bro

5 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.
6 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.

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.

Steven universe has a very good plot line which I normally don’t expect for cartoons

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!

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.

7 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.
8 Kim Possible Kim Possible is an American animated children's television series created by Bob Schooley and Mark McCorkle for Disney Channel.
9 Young Justice Young Justice is an American animated television series developed by Brandon Vietti and Greg Weisman for Cartoon Network.

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.

Addictive with an amazing plot

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

10 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 ...read more.

The Contenders

11 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 ...read more.

Even if it's not completely story driven, it's got amazing backstory and everything. It's just so well written.

Really nice story with memorable characters!

Very amazing characters and storyline

Number 1 of all time.

12 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 ...read more.

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.

Amazing show

The best cartoon show I've ever watched!

Its good from season 2 to the end

13 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is an American 3D rendered computer animated television series based on the fictional superhero team. It aired on Nickelodeon in the United States from September 29, 2012 to November 12, 2017.

I thought it said 2012 because the picture. I meant 2012.

14 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!

Korra is a bad show

15 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.

This has arguably one of the best storylines in T.V. history, end of story.

As far as surprisingly complex, this one takes the cake. - BeatlesFan1964

It's the greatest show ever! I couldn't stop watching after season 1. I wanted there to be a season 3, but the series finished.😢

Ok I have absolutely NO idea why I did not put this in the top 5! >:O
lol I have binge watched the series so many times.
the art, the charecters, and the story, all fabulous! - moonwolf

16 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.

17 Teen Titans Teen Titans is an American animated television series created by Glen Murakami, based on the DC Comics characters of the same name.
18 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". ...read more.

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. - ModernSpongeBobSucks

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.

19 JoJo's Bizarre Adventures

Super manly not gay I swear

This is the best show ever everyone have to watch it

god

big gay

20 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.

21 Generator Rex Generator Rex is an American science fantasy action animated television series created by Man of Action for Cartoon Network.

Generator Rex was one of the biggest parts of my childhood, but I had only seen a little bit of it.

I recently went back and re-watched the entire thing, and still as a young adult, it did a wonderful job of invoking emotions and I still yearn for a cartoon to fill the hole in my heart that Generator Rex ending left.

It is the best thing I ever watched

Fantastic underrated series

BEST, just “BEST”

22 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

23 Ok Ko: Let's Be Heroes!

Amazing

24 Samurai 7
25 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.
26 Gargoyles Gargoyles is an American animated series produced by Walt Disney Television Animation and Buena Vista Television, and originally aired from October 24, 1994 to February 15, 1997. The series features a species of nocturnal creatures known as gargoyles that turn to stone during the day.

Amazing story tons of action packed plots

27 Regular Show Regular Show is an American animated television series created by J. G. Quintel for Cartoon Network that premiered on September 6, 2010. The series revolves around the lives of two friends, a blue jay named Mordecai and a raccoon named Rigby—both employed as groundskeepers at a local park.
28 Code Lyoko Code Lyoko is a French animated television series created by Thomas Romain and Tania Palumbo and produced by Moonscoop.

Code Kyoto is that French animated program that everyone thinks is an anime that used to air on Cartoon Network's TOONAMI block. The show is about a group of boarding school students that find an abandoned factory that contains a supercomputer that gives them access to a virtual world known as LYOKO, LYOKO is infected with an intelligent virus named XANA that is powerful enough to affect the real world, so the kids band together as the Kyoto warriors to fight it. It sounds pretty simple and I guess it kinda is, but the lore goes a lot deeper than you would think but if you want to give this show a try I can't really say anything else without spoiling so just trust me when I say it goes beyond just being a real-life video game. The show has aged pretty well! but some of the scenes may drag on a little longer than you would like so I guess you can say that the pacing is a little dated, also the entire first season was written very episodically to help attract new viewers ( Still giving ...more

29 My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic is a children's animated fantasy television series developed by Lauren Faust, produced by Hasbro Studios and DHX Media Vancouver. Despite the target demographic of young girls, Friendship Is Magic has also gained a large following of older viewers, mainly young and ...read more.
30 Æon Flux
31 The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy (also known as Billy & Mandy) is an American animated television series created by Maxwell Atoms for Cartoon Network, and is the 14th of the network's Cartoon Cartoons (albeit namely when it was part of Grim & Evil; the show is considered separate from Cartoon Cartoons ...read more.

Used to love this show. - Miauzer

32 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.

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.

33 Ben 10: Omniverse

Honestly the most overhated entry in the series.

34 The Hollow
35 Fullmetal Alchemist Fullmetal Alchemist is an anime series adapted from the manga of the same name by Hiromu Arakawa. It is about two brothers, Edward Elric and Alphonse Elric, trying to restore their bodies after failing at bringing their mother back to life. It aired in 2003 and was remade as Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood ...read more.
36 Samurai Jack Samurai Jack is an American action-adventure chanbara animated series created by Genndy Tartakovsky for Cartoon Network. The series premiered on August 10, 2001, with a TV movie called The Premiere Movie, before ending in its fourth season on September 25, 2004, without concluding the story. A revival ...read more.
37 Rocko's Modern Life Rocko's Modern Life is an American animated television series created by Joe Murray for Nickelodeon. The series centers on the surreal life of an anthropomorphic Australian-immigrant wallaby named Rocko as well as his friends: the gluttonous steer Heffer, the neurotic turtle Filburt, and Rocko's faithful ...read more.

What was amazing about this show was the DIALOGUE, not so much the actual "plot" itself - xandermartin98

38 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is an American 3D rendered computer animated television series based on the fictional superhero team. It aired on Nickelodeon in the United States from September 29, 2012 to November 12, 2017.
39 The Loud House The Loud House is an American animated television series created by Chris Savino for Nickelodeon. The series revolves around the chaotic suburban everyday life of a boy named Lincoln Loud and his ten sisters, to which he survives as the middle child and only son in a large family of eleven children. ...read more.
40 Hey Arnold! Hey Arnold! is an American animated television series created by Craig Bartlett that aired on Nickelodeon from October 7, 1996 to June 8, 2004. The show centers on a fourth grader named Arnold, who lives with his grandparents in an inner-city boarding house.
41 We Bare Bears An animated comedy show by Daniel Chong about three different species of bears - Grizzly, Panda and Ice bear (polar bear). Since they were little, they wanted to get adopted by owners separately. But then they missed each other too much, so they reunited again. Now as adults, they now live in a cave ...read more.
42 Transformers: Animated

At first it sparked controversy, but was provened to be awesome

43 The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes! is an American animated television series by Marvel Animation in cooperation with Film Roman, based on the Marvel Comics superhero team the Avengers.

Such a good super hero show

44 Pokemon Pokémon, abbreviated from the Japanese title of Pocket Monsters and currently advertised in English as Pokémon: The Series, is a Japanese anime television series, which has been adapted for the international television markets.
45 Rapunzel's Tangled Adventure

If you watched the first movie and thought, how it could possibly go on, you wouldn't imagine how deep the background of its plot actually would be. At first there are only fragments of plot points hiding in the episodes so it feels like a casual cartoon series. But watching the events and following the plot it becomes thrilling.
I personally think it is one of the best created plot in a T.V. series with loving characters and interesting twists.

46 Naruto Shippuden Naruto: Shippuden is the ongoing sequel to the original Naruto anime and covers the Naruto manga from volume twenty-eight on. The TV adaptation of Naruto: Shippuden debuted in Japan on February 15, 2007 on TV Tokyo. It is developed by Studio Pierrot and directed by Hayato Date.
47 Yu-Gi-Oh

How is this surprising? YuGiOh! is amazing and everyone knows that. - Miauzer

48 Viva Piñata
49 Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny is an anime television series, a direct sequel to Mobile Suit Gundam SEED by Sunrise and the overall tenth installment in the Gundam franchise. It retains most of the staff from Gundam SEED, including Director Mitsuo Fukuda.
50 Mobile Suit Gundam SEED
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