Saturday Morning Cartoons

In the ‘80s, we lived for the weekend – we could listen to our boom boxes, go roller skating, go to the video store to rent movies, and hang out at the food court at the mall to pick up boys.

But think further back – way back to when you were younger. What did you spend your weekend doing? Riding your bike? Trading baseball cards? Sure.  But, I bet I know how your weekend started on Saturday. I bet you were doing the same thing I was.

Watching Saturday morning cartoons.

Super Friends cartoon

Smurfs cartoon

He-Man and the Masters of the Universe cartoon

My brother Mike and I would get up even earlier than we would on a school day and tiptoe downstairs so we didn’t wake our parents. We had our ritual of getting mugfuls of dry cereal (usually Apple Jacks or Fruit Loops) that we called our “appetizers” before dad came down to make us scrambled eggs with cheese.

Then it was on. The television, I mean. For hours.

See, back in the day we didn’t have entire networks devoted to cartoons; we had to wait all week for Saturday morning in order to get our animation fix.

So there we sat, mugs of sugar in hand in front of the big glowing box. Here are a few shows that were the most important and most memorable to me.


The theme song still makes me misty…Superman. Wonder Woman. Batman and Robin. The Wonder Twins and their space monkey Gleek.

The Smurfs

I watched the show and collected the figures like a maniac. Papa Smurf was so knowledgeable, Smurfette was so pretty and Brainy Smurf was so annoying. I smurfed this show so much.

He-Man and the Masters of the Universe

“I HAVE THE POWER!” I watched this with my brother but secretly loved it too.

There were of course also “the shows between the shows.”  That was when we learned the preamble to the constitution and all about conjunctions/adjectives/adverbs from Schoolhouse Rock!, Time for Timer taught us that it’s way more fun to call cheese and crackers a “wagon wheel” and nobody wanted to be known as a “yuck mouth.” But that’s a whole other story.

What were your favorite cartoons of the ‘80s? Take our poll and let us know! Not all of the ones listed below were Saturday morning shows; some we watched after school like Inspector Gadget and Garfield.

Which cartoon were you watching while you ate your Count Chocula in front of the TV?

Vote and we’ll let you know which cartoon is crowned king of the ‘80s!


Author: Lori Ferraro

Lori is a writer and actor living in Portland, OR. Her website, Drawn to the 80s, is where her 5 year old draws the greatest music hits of the 1980s. She is a blogger for The Huffington Post and her own blog, Once Upon a Product, is where she writes about important things like beauty products, music, her obsession with Mick Jagger and of course...the 80s.

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  1. Just wanted to thank Lori for keeping this website going. Lover her articles.

    May the 80’s live forever!

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  2. Land of the Lost was my Fav.

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  3. I don’t think any decade had it better. Saturday morning cartoons were not just for passing time, it was an experience like no other. Thanks for all these 80’s retro memories. I am so glad to have been a kid during this magical decade. Long live the 80’s!

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  4. I think that one of the reasons the 80’s still have such a strong appeal (besides their general awesomeness) is that some work was required on our part to enjoy their greatest treasures. I remember my sister and I staying up until midnight on Saturday to finish the Doctor Demento radio show and the waking up at 6 or 7 Sunday morning to catch The Inhumanoids and Jem and the Holograms. Good times.

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  5. He-man wasn’t a Saturday morning cartoon,it was a weekday syndicated cartoon.Which would be fine if the article wasn’t highlighting Saturday Morning cartoons and it was used as one of the three examples.

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