They played saxophones, dished out droll one-liners, puffed their power, and even taught kids how to respect nature while living your best life. Indeed, the great female cartoon characters from the 90s came in all shapes and sizes, and from all walks of life. But the one thing they all had in common? They’re such icons these days that even pizza wouldn’t make them better (with apologies to one of the animated ladies herself!).
Lisa Simpson from The Simpsons
She was the female kid lead in a show that satirized the American middle class, with her family living in the ubiquitous “Springfield.” Her quick wit and intelligence (alongside Bart’s) often made for some of the more memorable episodes. And she proved to be just as tough as – if not tougher than – her male counterparts.
Daria Morgendorffer from “Daria”
She was the female outcast of a high school world populated by all sorts – popular kids, nerds, jocks, and everything in between. She was often too clever for her own good (or anyone else’s) but always had time to dish out some attitude with that silky voice of hers. Among Daria’s famous bits of wisdom was that pizza could make every and any moment and facet of life better.
Patti Mayonnaise from “Doug”
She had a big personality and an even bigger capacity for caring. No matter the problem, Patti could be counted on to give good advice or encouragement. She was loyal to her friends and never gave up on them no matter what they did. Patti could also be a curt, especially when she hadn’t eaten for awhile — was “hangry” created for her? Maybe.
Patti was also a good student and talented athlete.
Susie Carmichael from “Rugrats”
Susie was the female protagonist, and she always had something to say about anything. She loved her friends deeply but could be a bully if crossed; while she didn’t always have good intentions or work hard at school, Susie’s heart was in the right place — whether it was trying to get Tommy out of trouble with his babysitter Angelica or being her brother’s protector when they were lost.
Daphne Blake from “Scooby-Doo”
One of two original female Scooby team member, Daphne was often the focus of everyone else in the group because she had a lot going on outside of work — serious ballet lessons to contend with and an overbearing rich dad, who just so happened to fund the whole Mystery Machine operation. And, though Daphne may have started off as a spoiled-brat type of character, she eventually developed into an invaluable member of the crime-fighting team … and not just for her money!
Velma Dinkley from “Scooby-Doo”
Velma was the brains of the Scooby Gang, and she made it her mission to solve all of their mysteries. She also had a knack for solving puzzles that other people couldn’t figure out — heck, even some kids today might struggle with them! Velma wasn’t one to do much fighting in the show, but when there’s a mystery to solve, she’s the one who gets it done.
Babs Bunny from “Tiny Toon Adventures”
Miss Babs is a female character that stands out for two reasons: She can fly and she isn’t in love with Buster Bunny! (In fact, they’re often at odds!) Though her main job was to teach the female characters in school, she was also often called on to save Buster and friends from various perils. And as we all know, girls can do anything boys can … and usually better!
Pocahontas from “Pocahontas”
This female Native American role model was voiced by Irene Bedard, an Alaskan native with Inupiat and French Canadian/Cree bloodlines. Pocahontas is known for her bravery and the strength she showed when saving John Smith from being executed. Though the original Disney film has been accused of reinforcing stereotypes, this female character can still teach us a lot about female empowerment.