Ah, the 1980s, a time of spandex, synth guitars, and toy advertisements disguised as Saturday morning cartoons meant to entertain a generation of kids all over the world. It’s impossible to sum up the entirety of 80s cartoons with any sort of meaningful description, but there’s one thing they all had in common: Theme songs. Epic, ridiculous theme songs.
A cartoon’s theme song tends to be one of the most memorable parts of the cartoon itself; chances are you’re already humming a particular tune to yourself even if you can’t remember anything about the show. That’s where we come in! Not only have we rounded up the very best in 80s cartoon theme songs for your listening and viewing pleasure, we’ve included some deep cuts pulled from the dark corners of TV history that you might barely remember or might never have seen at all.
To be clear, these cartoons had to have a substantial run in the 1980s to be considered “80s Cartoons”; sorry, The Simpsons. Also, there had to be some sort of lyrical song, noticeable theme, or anything other than the straight-up exposition style in the intro, like the ones used in these disqualified series: The Centurions, Dino-Riders, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, She-Ra: Princess of Power, Sky Commanders, Thundarr the Barbarian, Turbo Teen, Blackstar, G-Force Guardians of Space, Sectaurs. (These were tough cuts, believe me.)
Some entries joined the list based on pure, audacious style, like my buddy Overlord up there from the easily missed series, Spiral Zone. Some other honorable mentions that didn’t make the cut include: The Littles, Galaxy High, Mister T, The Incredible Hulk, and Popples, though I’m sure I missed a few of your favorites along the way. You might think you know your 80s cartoons, but you haven’t seen anything yet!