We’ve all grown up with our own favorite cartoon characters. They made us laugh, cry, and thoroughly enjoy our Saturday mornings while we ate a bowl of cereal. Sometimes a little milk might have even come out of our noses. While cartoon characters certainly delighted us, you might be surprised to learn some of the bizarre facts about them. From the people behind the voices to some peculiar decision making by the creators, you’ll love to hear about this cartoon trivia. Here are 25 Bizarre Facts About Cartoon Characters!
Doug - Mr. Bone
Fans of Doug will instantly know the name Mr. Bone, the titular cartoon character’s vice principal. He was cranky, humorless, and loved to discipline the kids on the show. You might not know, however, that his character’s look and personality was based on the popular actor Don Knotts.
G.I. Joe - Duke
Duke was the leader of the G.I. Joe team, so the likelihood of him dying was pretty nil. He could dodge lasers, survive plane crashes, and take on tons of baddies at once. But, in the 1987 G.I. Joe movie, Duke is stabbed in the heart and dies. Except, he really didn’t die. Afraid kids would be traumatized, producers added in at the end of the G.I. Joe movie that Duke was just in a coma and made a full recovery
Batman: The Animated Series - The Joker
Everyone knows Mark Hamill was the voice actor of the villainous Joker for hit cartoon Batman: The Animated Series. But before Hamill took on the role of the Clown Prince of Crime, producers considered giving it over to Tim Curry, popular at the time for IT and The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
The Simpsons - Bart
The Simpsons is a beloved cartoon spanning several decades and hundreds of episodes. For a long time, kids and teens associated with Bart as a funny rebel without a cause, pulling pranks at every turn. Most people don’t realize his character is actually voiced by a woman, Nancy Cartwright.
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Transformers - Optimus Prime and Megatron
Once Hasbro bought the rights to Transformers, they needed to market the cartoon and toys to kids and wanted them to have awesome names that kids would love. To do this, the company called on Marvel Comics to create the names. Writers Denny O’Neil and Bob Budiansky came up with the names Optimus Prime and Megatron.
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Muppet Babies - Skeeter
The creators of the Muppet Babies included everyone’s favorite Muppet characters as little toddlers, like Kermit, Gonzo, Miss Piggy, and Fozzie. They also created Skeeter specifically for the cartoon, but she never appeared as a Muppet anywhere else.
Rainbow Bright - Starlite
While the character Rainbow Bright was on a mission to bring joy and happiness to everyone, it seemed like her talking horse, Starlite, had other things in mind. He was very narcissistic, constantly calling himself “magnificent, the glory of the galaxy, and splendidly graceful.”
Spider-Man: The Animated Series - Hobgoblin
The producers behind the popular cartoon Spider-Man: The Animated Series made the controversial decision to place Hobgoblin as the primary Spider-Man villain rather than The Green Goblin, a character that came before the Hobgoblin 20 years before. When one producer tried to change things, he was told he couldn’t because the Hobgoblin toy line was already in production.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - April O'Neil
In the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon, April O’Neil is usually associated with being a reporter. But, that wasn’t always the case. Originally, she was a scientist at Baxter Stockman’s laboratory and was saved by the turtles from his robot mice.
Rocko's Modern Life - Heffer Wolfe
On the raunchy and dirty Nickelodeon show Rocko’s Modern Life, Rocko’s best friend is a male steer named Heffer Wolfe. A steer is a castrated bull calf and a heifer is a female cow that never had a calf. So, clearly, the creators loved irony.
Rugrats - Chuckie
On the Nickelodeon cartoon Rugrats, Chuckie, the redhead who was best friends with Tommy and scared of most everything, was voiced by Christine Cavanaugh. She also did tons of other voices for Dexter’s Laboratory, Power Puff Girls, Recess, The Wild Thornberrys, and many others.
Winnie the Pooh - Tigger
In Disney’s Winnie the Pooh, Paul Winchell voiced the popular character Tigger (he also voiced several other popular cartoon characters), but it might surprise you to discover Winchell also holds a patent to one of the first artificial heart devices ever made.
Animaniacs - Yakko, Wacko, and Dot
The zany characters Yakko, Wacko, and Dot on the hit show Animaniacs were based on the creator’s own kids. Considering how childish the characters were, it seems like the only possible explanation.
Everyone loves the kind and friendly aardvark Arthur. But in a bizarre twist, the creator Marc Brown said he will never grow up and remain eight-years-old forever. “His life is almost perfect,” he said.
The Johnny Bravo cartoon was known for its silly Elvis-like antics and macho parodies. But, believe it or not, the character and show were almost passed on before three women, Ellen Cockrill, Janet Mazotti, and Julie Kane-Ritsch at Cartoon Network stepped up and fought for the show to be picked up.
Thundercats - Cheetara
Everyone loved Lion-O from the hit cartoon 80’s Thundercats, but parents loved another character even more – Cheetara. Starting in 1985 and on, more and more children were named “Cheetara” by their parents. A total of 81 children took on the name in the 80’s.
Spongebob Squarepants - Gary and Patrick
On the popular Nickelodeon show Spongebob Squarepants, Gary is Spongebob’s pet snail, and Patrick is his best friend. Most people don’t know, however, that Gary and Patrick are cousins.
X-Men: The Animated Series - Magneto
X-Men: The Animated Series was one of the most successful cartoons of all time and helped kick off video game, comic, and movie spin-offs. Originally, for the live-action film in 2000, they wanted the voice actor of Magneto, David Hemblen, to play Magento in the movie. Sadly, he had to turn it down due to scheduling conflicts.
The Jetsons - Astro
If you ever watched the classic cartoon The Jetsons, you might have noticed a similarity between their dog Astro and another famous dog, Scooby-Doo. That’s because they were both voiced by the same voice actor, Don Messick.
Pinky and the Brain
A spin-off of the cartoon Animaniacs, Pinky and the Brain followed around two mice with the sole purpose of trying to take over the world. The Brain was always coming up with schemes while Pinky somehow figured out how to ruin them. Maurice LaMarche, the voice of The Brain, said the character’s voice was influenced by 70 percent Orson Welles, 20 percent Vincent Price, and 10 percent of possibly Peter Lorre.
Who doesn’t love everyone’s favorite Scooby gang solving mysteries in a haunted house? As it turns out, there’s more Scoobys to love, too. Their dog, Scooby-Doo, has several other siblings. Their names are Skippy-Doo, Doody-Doo, Howdy-Doo, Yabba-Doo, and Rudy-Doo.
Family Guy - Chris
This might totally creep you out and change how you view Chris from the hit show Family Guy. Seth Green supposedly based the voice of his character off of Buffalo Bill from Silence of the Lambs.
Ren and Stimpy
Few can forget the gross and widely inappropriate antics on the cartoon Ren and Stimpy. Believe it or not, Stimpy the cat, a character that doesn’t really look like a cat, was based on the Tweety Bird cartoon A Gruesome Twosome. One of the cats in the short has an incredibly large nose. So, the Ren and Stimpy creator John Kricfalusi modeled it after that cat.
Beavis and Butthead
Mike Judge came up with the names for his famous character Beavis and Butthead from two kids from his childhood. Bobby Beavis was an athletic kid who lived close to Judge during college, and he also knew a 12-year-old kid that called himself the “Iron Butt.” Other people just called him Butt Head.
Der Fuehrer's Face - Donald Duck
Donald Duck appeared and was the main star in the 1943 cartoon Der Fuehrer’s Face. It was American anti-Nazi propaganda during World War II and went on to win the Academy Award for Best Animated Short film. It’s the only Donald Duck film to win an Academy Award.