The 1980s were a golden age for cartoons, with many beloved and iconic series premiering during this decade. While shows like “The Transformers,” “He-Man and the Masters of the Universe,” and “G.I. Joe” remain popular to this day, there are many other forgotten 80s cartoons that many kids of the era loved … if only briefly.
One such series is “The Adventures of the Galaxy Rangers,” which aired from 1986 to 1989. This sci-fi western followed a team of space-faring heroes as they battled villains and protected the galaxy. The show was known for its unique blend of action, humor, and drama, and it featured an all-star voice cast that included Neil Patrick Harris and Sarah Jessica Parker. (Watch Galaxy Rangers on Amazon Prime Video [affiliate link])
Another forgotten 80s cartoon is “Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors,” which aired from 1985 to 1986. This show followed the adventures of Jayce, a young hero who led a group of rebels against the evil organization known as the Monster Minds. The series was known for its high-energy action and its memorable theme song, which declared “there’s a new hero on the planet, his name is Jayce, and he’s here to save the day!”
A third example is “The Centurions,” which aired from 1986 to 1987. This show followed the adventures of a team of high-tech heroes who used their advanced suits and weapons to defend the world from threats both terrestrial and extraterrestrial. The series was known for its action-packed episodes and its futuristic setting.
While these shows may not have the same level of recognition as some of their contemporaries, they are still worth checking out for fans of 80s cartoons. Whether you’re a diehard nostalgia fan or just looking for something new to watch, these forgotten series are sure to provide plenty of entertainment.
Here are a few more forgotten 80s cartoons:
- “Thundarr the Barbarian” – This action-adventure series followed the adventures of Thundarr and his companions as they journeyed through a post-apocalyptic world filled with mutants, monsters, and magic.
- “The Mysterious Cities of Gold” – This animated adventure series followed a group of young heroes as they searched for the legendary Cities of Gold in the New World.
- “The Snorks” – This underwater adventure series followed the misadventures of a group of colorful creatures called Snorks as they explored their undersea world.
- “The Herculoids” – This action-adventure series followed a group of humanoid creatures with superpowers as they defended their planet from various threats.
- “M.A.S.K.” – This action-adventure series followed a group of heroes who used advanced vehicles and masks to fight against the evil organization V.E.N.O.M.
- “The Littles” – This animated series followed a family of tiny people who lived inside the walls of a human home and had adventures with their larger-than-life friends.
- “The Adventures of Teddy Ruxpin” – This animated series followed the adventures of Teddy Ruxpin, a magical talking teddy bear, as he explored the wondrous land of Grundo.
- “RoboCop: The Animated Series” – Based on the popular film franchise, this animated series followed the adventures of the cyborg police officer as he protected the city of Detroit from crime and corruption.
(And check out our full list of 80s cartoons, where you’ll surely find scads more hidden gems.)
MORE Forgotten 80s Cartoons!
And, oh, OK …
Since you can never really get enough forgotten 80s cartoons, here are some more great — if silly — ones …
Bananaman began life in 1980 as a comic book “hero” from the pen of British artist John Geering. There, the B-man transformed from an ordinary schoolboy into a parody conglomeration of all sorts of other superheroes, activated by eating, yes, a banana.
This sorta-Popeye-sorta-Superman dude grew in popularity enough over the first few years of the decade that BBC picked him up and turned him into an animated series that ran from 1983 through 1986.
We can all use a little more potassium in our diets, so it’s time for a Bananaman revival … don’t you think!
The Gary Coleman Show
There was no more popular child star in the 1970s and 1980s than Gary Coleman, courtesy of his plucky Arnold Jackson character on Diff’rent Strokes (sorry, Soleil Moon Frye/Punky Brewster!).
So it made total sense that NBC would peg Coleman for a new Saturday morning cartoon in 1982.
It is a little odd, perhaps, that they pegged him as an angel trying to earn his wings, etc., but, hey, beggars can’t be choosers.
And we’re here begging for a big more of The Gary Coleman Show.
Potato Head Kids
Yes, this was an outcropping of the Mr. Potato Head, uh, “franchise.”
And, yes, it features a bunch of little kid Potato Heads roaming through their world doing adventurous things.
But, no, they were not called the Tater Tots (though maybe when they were younger …).
And, yes, their nemesis was named Grease.
And … well … maybe they helped inspire the Potato Head appearances in Toy Story.
I mean, all these conspiracy theories in the 21st century had to start somewhere, right?
And since we were all kids in the 1970s and 1980s, it seems reasonable to assume the roots lie thereabouts. Maybe in the cartoons.
Heck, even The Flintstones gave us little green men.
So Dinosaucers were perhaps a natural outcropping of The Great Gazoo, pitting hero alien dinosaurs and alien human things against evil and tyrannical Tyrannos.
And we’re an outcropping of that.
Seventies weed hangover. Or something.
Yeah, so there’s a lot of alien stuff here.
And? What’s your point?
The grays are coming, you know.
The Professor surely knows, because when he managed to build a spaceship to get the castaways off the island and out of the lagoon, he blasted them right off to a distant, isolated planet.
And it was all captured in glorious animated color in the Saturday morning funny shows.
When we get out there, though, beyond the stars, I’ll bet we find them all, still trying to recover from their three-hour tour.
Want more? Check out these unforgettable 1980s Halloween cartoons.
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