When Are You Too Old for Cartoons?

Cartoon super hero woman

Written by Frankie Cameron

When are you too old for cartoon movies and TV shows? Is there an age limit where you can’t enjoy animation anymore? Or can both adults and children alike appreciate the art of cartoons?

Last week, when I was scrolling Disney Plus and the Lion King popped up. The original one with James Earl Jones as Mufasa, Jeremy Irons as Scar, and Matthew Broderick as the adult Simba. I sat and watched the entire movie. But while I was watching, my brain kept wondering if I was too old to enjoy cartoons or if cartoons were for everyone.

Do you remember the original Lion King that debuted in 1994? When it debuted, it was the greatest full-length animated Disney feature of all time. It even won the Academy Awards for original Score and original Song for Elton John’s hit Can You Feel The Love Tonight.

The Story

The Lion King takes place in Pride Rock, a serene jungle paradise on the African plain. In Pride Rock, every animal lives as part of a harmonious ecosystem ruled by King Mufasa. When King Mufasa and Sarabi welcome their son Simba to the family, the young heir’s Uncle Scar plots to overthrow his brother and take his kingdom by force.

A Conspiracy

Forming a conspiracy with a pack of wild hyenas, Scar plans to lure Simba and Mufasa into a valley where the hyenas stir up a herd of wildebeests. The wildebeests end up trampling Mufasa and leave him clinging to his life on the edge of a cliff. Scar seizes the opportunity to send his brother hurling to his death and send Simba into Exile.

With the king gone, Scar, and the hyenas ascend to power. They soon reduced pride Rock to a desolate wasteland as its newest rulers ravage the landscape.

Hakuna Matada

Fleeing to a faraway land, Simba befriends Pumbaa and Timon, a warthog and meerkat who live carefree lives feasting on grubs and insects. But as time passes, a chance encounter reunites Simba with his childhood destiny. Can Simba return to Pride Rock and reclaim his rightful position as king, or will he succumb to the temptations of a simple life, free from conflict and responsibility? If you don’t know the answer, go watch the movie and find out.

My Connection to The Lion King

The Lion King was the first movie that my two-year-old daughter sat still enough to watch. In fact, we still have the videotape… yes, I said videotape. Although she almost wore it out, playing it repeatedly. We even bought the soundtrack (cassette tape) which we listened to for a ten-hour car ride (fun times). I can still sing Hakuna Matata by heart. While I have watched the new Lion King (2019) my heart still loves the first one more.

If you shy away from animated films as childlike, I would well advise you to make an exception for The Lion King. It’s simply an extraordinary epic, with interesting characters, glorious music and top-notch animation.

Are Cartoons for Everyone?

Cartoons are a popular way to pass the time. Whether you are young or old, you can watch cartoons for fun or spend time with your family. It’s also a great way to relax and let your mind wander. With a wide range of cartoons available, you can easily find a cartoon to watch. In this section, we will explore the age ranges of cartoons.

Cartoons for Toddlers

Cartoons can be educational. Many cartoons have lessons that teach kids about social issues, history, and geography. They can also teach moral lessons. Although, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued a policy statement in 2016 that stated that toddlers should not watch cartoons until they are 18-24 months old. And then for up to one hour or less a day.

Here are some educational cartoons for toddlers:

  • Dinosaur Train
  • Daniel Tigers Neighborhood
  • Wild Kratts
  • Sid the Science Kid
  • Ask the Storybots

Cartoons for Children

Watching cartoons with positive messages can boost your child’s brain development. However, you should be careful not to let your child watch cartoons for extended periods of time and choose cartoons with simple storylines.

Here are some educational cartoons for kids:

  • Arthur
  • Rhyme Time Town
  • Phineas and Ferb
  • Atomic Betty
  • Ducktales
  • The Magic School Bus

Cartoons for Adults

Disney and Pixar have further helped to establish the stereotype of these films as only for little kids. However, the age limit on cartoons should not prevent an adult from watching a cartoon alone. Some movies like Aladdin (1982 with Robin Williams – hilarious) have animation for the kids and humor for adults.

There are plenty of Adult only cartoons on the networks and streaming services. While some adults feel that watching cartoons is childish, and silly, research shows that adults can benefit from watching them. They help us exercise our imagination and allow us to relax and unwind.

Here are some cartoons for adults:

  • The Flintstones
  • The Jetsons
  • Rick & Morty
  • The Simpsons
  • South Park
  • Harley Quinn
  • Family Guy
  • Bob’s Burgers
  • Robot Chicken
  • King of the Hill

Final Thoughts

The answer to the question “When are you too old for cartoons?” appears to be never. Do you watch cartoons? Let me know if the comments.


Until next time



Feature image by Janos Perian from Pixabay.

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