Top 10 Darker Adaptations and Continuations of Kid Friendly Media

Some artists and groups feel like updating a cute and innocent work of children's media to a darker and edgier spinoff/continuation in order to get with the times. And that's why I've compiled a list of 10 darkest adaptations/continuations of kid friendly media.

The Top Ten

1 Shadow the Hedgehog

This game sucks, but just the fact that this game was ever made blows my mind. If anything this game makes me laugh every time I see it. - EvanWellens

In the mid-2000s, a lot of kid-friendly properties tried to look more dark and edgy and failed miserably. One notable example of this is Shadow the Hedgehog, a game much darker and edgier than most Sonic games which allowed Sonic Team to use elements otherwise inappropriate for the series (such as having Shadow say the D word).

It's dark in a good way. - myusernameisthis

WHeRe’S tHaT dAmN fOuRtH cHaOs eMeRaLd? - RadioHead03

2 Samurai Jack Season 5

The fifth and final season of animated series Samurai Jack premiering on Adult Swim. It is incredibly different from all the other seasons, as in the original series it was more tamed and had little to no blood. Then in Season 5 it suddenly showed lots of blood and a couple swear words here and there.
The more mature themes even extend to moments like Jack killing a human (his first live kill) and even trying to commit seppuku (a Japanese suicide ritual by disembowelment).

3 Ren and Stimpy: Adult Party Cartoon Ren and Stimpy: Adult Party Cartoon

A spinoff of the popular Nickelodeon series Ren and Stimpy. I'm not gonna lie and pretend that Ren and Stimpy was actually kid friendly but the adult spin-off that premiered on Spike T.V. took the show to a whole level with all kinds of disgusting humor and adult themes.
The show itself was universally panned for being overly raunchy and unnecessarily crude. It has been listed as one of the worst cartoons/T.V. shows of all time. It was so bad that original voice actor Billy West turned it down because he was afraid it would damage his career, claiming it was one of the worst things he ever saw.

Adult party! what more do I need to say?

Utter Trash. - EvanWellens

4 Return to Oz
5 The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask
6 Batman: The Animated Series Batman: The Animated Series Batman: The Animated Series is an American animated television series based on the DC Comics superhero Batman.
7 Batman Beyond Batman Beyond Batman Beyond is an American animated television series developed by Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, and Alan Burnett and produced by Warner Bros.
8 Super Paper Mario

Most of the time, when games made for kids turn edgy it fails, but leave it to Super Paper Mario to not just succeed, but to remain memorable all these years later. - EvanWellens

9 Bomberman: Act Zero

What an awful game. - RadioHead03

The biggest and funniest offender of 2000s kid media trying to lach onto the darker and edgier side is definitely Bomberman: Act Zero. It's where they took a cute mascot, gave him claws and chains, and threw him into a dystopic future where other bomberman fight to the death. The game itself was universally panned when it was released in 2006, with critics citing its awful controls, ugly graphics, tedious gameplay, forgettable soundtrack and laughably bad premise as its main flaws. It's gone on to be featured on a numbwr of Worst Video Games of All Time lists and is widely regarded as the worst Bomberman game in history.

10 Metroid Prime: Trilogy

The Contenders

11 Super Metroid
12 Boo Boo Runs Wild

A cartoon short based of Yogi Bear made by John Kricfaluci the same guy behind Ren and Stimpy and Ren and Stimpy Adult Party Cartoon. - egnomac

13 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003)
14 Loonatics Unleashed

A 2005 action T.V. show based on/inspired by the Looney Tunes characters, which features descendants of them fighting crime in a futuristic post-apocalyptic setting in the year 2772.

15 Man of Steel
16 The Dark Knight
17 Lord of the Rings

We're all familiar with this of course. Pretty much a sequel to The Hobbit, which was already written for children. The Lord of the Rings on the other hand was written much darker and more mature as Tolkien hated the idea of fantasy being marketed towards only children.

18 Afterlife with Archie

A spinoff series released by Archie Comics. It is a horror series taking place in an alternate universe of Riverdale, this time focusing on blood, gore, psychological terror, social issues, implied incest, and other dark topics. While the characters in the original series are much goofier, their counterparts in this series are more realistic (Betty and Veronica's feud is portrayed as full-blown hate, Reggie goes from a likeable jerk to a homophobic douchebag, and Sabrina's aunts go from quirky and pleasant to ruhtless monsters).
Apparently people were sick of Archie Comics and its goody two-shoes nature and desired something more dark and grim. The series itself was successful and spun off into a completely different comic line called Archie Horror.

Pretty good comic spinoff series. Although I like the more goody two-shoe nature style comics, i’m still impressed on how they turned Archie dark. - RadioHead03

19 The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess manga

Twilight Princess is already a dark title in The Legend of Zelda series but the manga it was based on is a lot darker than the game. In book 1, the scene where Ordon Village is attacked by King Bulblin is a lot more graphic. In the game where Ilia and the kids simply get kidnapped as Link gets knocked out, in the manga they're tortured and beaten with Ilia getting shot with an arrow in the shoulder. King Bulblin then grabs her by the fave and implies that he intends to rape her. Then the bokoblins taunt a helpless Link who watches his friends get trauamtized, chop his arm off, and later drown him underwater (in which later the gods revive him and give him his arm back).
Another graphic scene involves Ganondorf who gets banished into the twilight realm for the crimes he committed in Ocarina of Time. In the game he's simply sucked into the realm, but in the manga his skin is ripped apart from his body while being sucked in, exposing his flesh and bones.

20 Metroid Fusion
21 Hanna-Barbera Beyond

Inspired by the success of Afterlife With Archie, DC Comics decided to make their own dark spinoff series featuring different Hanna-Barbera characters, which had them drawn more realistically and set into dark and gritty situations. The first of them was Scooby Apocalypse which focused on Scooby (who now has an intelligence enhancing brainchip) and the gang fighting actual monsters.
The second being The Jetsons where it focuses on a future where technology has officially ruled humanity and removed everything human about us.
The third one being The Flinstones where it focuses on a lot of social economic issues.
The comics themselves have been sort of a mixed bag though and a little less usccessful than Afterlife With Archie.

22 Mother 3
23 Avengers: Infinity War
24 Courage The Cowardly Dog 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.
25 Batman Begins
26 Rocko's Modern Life 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 more.

In terms of its sheer cynicism level, it ironically makes Ren & Stimpy look tame - xandermartin98

27 Invader ZIM 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.

Wasn't this show already dark when it first aired?

This entry is treating the show as a continuation of the collective Nicktoons franchise - xandermartin98

28 Pokemon Adventures

In the Pokemon Adventures manga (the most well known manga of the franchise), it focuses more on violence, death, and even torture. For example, in chapter 14 of the original Pokemon Adventures manga, a Charmelon decapitates an Arbok. The Arbok's body falls to the ground bleeding as it helplessly twiches in pain. This is how the battles in Pokemon Adventures end, and not even the Pokemon themsleves get tortured, even humans sometimes get tortured as well.

29 Jak II

Good game, way darker and harder - codgtamk34

30 Conker's Bad Fur Day
31 Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest
32 Batman Returns
33 Mario & Luigi: Partners In Time
34 Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door
35 Wario Land 4
36 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
37 Prince of Persia: Warrior Within
38 Super Smash Bros. Brawl
39 Final Fantasy VII
40 Earthbound
41 Final Fantasy VI
42 Um Jammer Lammy
43 The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
44 Spider-Man 3
45 Ok Computer - Radiohead

This isn't an adaptation/continuation. Radiohead isn't very kid friendly either so this makes no sense.

46 Genocide Undertale
47 Batman: Arkham Asylum
48 Luigi's Mansion
49 Titans (2018)
50 Dexter's Laboratory "Rude Removal"
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List Stats

60 listings
71 days old

Top Remixes

1. Metroid Prime: Trilogy
2. Shadow the Hedgehog
3. Super Metroid
1. Batman: The Animated Series
2. Batman Beyond
3. Samurai Jack Season 5
1. Ren and Stimpy: Adult Party Cartoon
2. Return to Oz
3. Super Paper Mario


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