11 Must-See Animated Shows This Spring and Summer

Tangled and Marvel movies get TV series, Ducktales reboot, Bojack Horseman and Archer return.

by | March 24, 2017 | Comments


No longer just fodder for Saturday mornings or weekday afternoons, animation dominates television now at every hour of the day. Whether it’s Fox’s Sunday-night lineup, the Disney Channel’s daytime programming, or Netflix shows you can stream 24/7, it can be overwhelming for animation connoisseurs to take it all in.

Rotten Tomatoes is here to help with this guide to 10 animated series on the air this spring and summer, including continuations of kids’ movies, reboots of childhood classics, and even some great options for grown-ups.


What It’s About: After Kong and his human friend Lukas fall into a volcano, they discover even more prehistoric creatures living beneath it.

Voiced By: Alessandro Juliani, Lee Tockar, Viv Leacock, Shannon Chan-Kent, Vincent Tong, Tabitha St. Germain

Where to Watch: Netflix

Why You Should Watch: This family-friendly version of King Kong provides a less scary alternative to Kong: Skull Island in theaters.

Fun Fact: Executive Producer Avi Arad is also responsible for bringing the first wave of Marvel movies to the screen, including X-Men and Spider-Man.

Kong: King of the Apes at Netflix (release date to be announced)


What It’s About: Based on Richard Adams’ novel about a group of rabbits who try to build a new home, but end up in battle.

Voiced By: Gemma Arterton, John Boyega, Mackenzie Crook, Freddie Fox, Nicholas Hoult, Ben Kingsley, James McAvoy

Where to Watch: Netflix

Why You Should Watch: Visionary director Noam Murro has four parts to tell this complete epic tale (tail?)!

Fun Fact: Sawyer was reading a paperback copy of the book on Lost.

Watership Down  at Netflix (release date to be announced)


Samurai Jack season 5 on Adult Swim’s Toonami Block

What It’s About: 50 years after his last adventure, Jack is still looking for a way home and trying to find a way to defeat Aku.

Voiced By: Phil LaMarr, Greg Baldwin, Grey DeLisle, Sab Shimono, Lauren Tom, Tom Kenny

Where to Watch: Adult Swim

Why You Should Watch: After 13 years, the Samurai Jack saga finally gets the conclusion it deserves. Read Rotten Tomatoes’ interview with creator Genndy Tartakovsky and Phil LaMarr here.

Fun Fact: Tartakovsky came up with this idea eight years ago but was busy making feature films until Adult Swim was ready to revisit Samurai Jack.

Samurai Jack new episodes Saturdays at 11 p.m. as part of Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim programming block


What It’s About: Two of the Guardians of the Galaxy have their own adventures in a series of shorts as they try to earn enough credits to buy a new ship.

Voiced By: Trevor Devall, Kevin Michael Richardson

Where to Watch: Disney XD

Why You Should Watch: They’re less than 2 minutes each, and they’ll tide you over until Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 comes out.

Fun Fact: Animation studio Passion Pictures also animated the 2011 Oscar-winning short The Lost Thing.

Rocket and Groot shorts are available on Disney XD’s YouTube Channel; all 12 shorts air April 10 at 7 a.m. on  Disney XD


What It’s About: Marvel’s intergalactic space heroes return for a second season of family-friendly adventures.

Voiced By: Will Friedle, Trevor Devall, Kevin Michael Richardson, Vanessa Marshall, David Sobolov

Where to Watch: Disney XD

Why You Should Watch: The Guardians meet The Avengers this season!

Fun Fact: I am Groot!

Guardians of the Galaxy air Saturdays at 9 p.m. on Disney XD


What It’s About: Grown up Alice (Jenna Elfman) gets a visit from her childhood imaginary friend Mary, a computer-animated character only Alice can see and hear.

Voiced By: Rachel Dratch as the voice of Mary.

Where to Watch: ABC

Why You Should Watch: Elfman’s return to TV comedy is a must see with or without an animated costar!

Fun Fact: This is the second version of Mary the creators developed. After the first pilot, they redesigned her to be warmer and cuter.

Imaginary Mary premieres March 29 at 8:30 p.m. on ABC


What It’s About: Sterling Archer takes a trip back in time to solve a film-noir style murder in 1947 Los Angeles.

Voiced By: H. Jon Benjamin, Jessica Walter, Aisha Tyler, Judy Greer, Chris Parnell, Amber Nash, Adam Reed, Lucky Yates

Where to Watch: FXX

Why You Should Watch: Archer is still funny after seven seasons, and seasons like Archer Vice show that new genres only make it funnier.

Fun Fact: Creator Adam Reed told the Murmur podcast he’d planned to end Archer after season 8, but will now make two more short seasons to end after 10.

Archer premieres April 5 at 10 p.m. on FXX


What’s It About: Donald Duck’s nephews Huey, Dewey, and Louie have Indiana Jones–like epic adventures with Scrooge McDuck.

Voiced By: David Tennant, Danny Pudi, Ben Schwartz, Bobby Moynihan, Kate Micucci, Beck Bennett, Toks Olagundoye

Where to Watch: Disney XD

Why You Should Watch: If you grew up with the original version of this show in the ’90s, that’s why. If this is new to you, how about a former Doctor Who as the voice of Scrooge.

Fun Fact: Disney XD has already ordered a second season of DuckTales before it’s even aired.

Ducktales will air on Disney XD  (release date to be announced)


What It’s About: After returning to her parents and kingdom, Rapunzel sets off for new adventures with Flynn Rider before she takes the throne.

Voiced By: Mandy Moore, Zachary Levi, Eden Espinosa, Julie Bowen, Clancy Brown

Where to Watch: Disney Channel

Why You Should Watch: It’s the sequel to Tangled! Plus, Disney has a good track record with series based on their movies: Aladdin, Emperor’s New School, and The Lion Guard to name a few.

Fun Fact: Alan Menken and Glenn Slater are back to write new songs for Tangled: The Series.

Tangled: The Series new episodes air Fridays at 7:30 p.m. on Disney Channel


What It’s About: Bojack is a has-been celebrity in a world of animal ad human movie stars. Season 4 plans to explore Bojack’s past more deeply than ever before.

Voiced By: Will Arnett, Aaron Paul, Amy Sedaris, Alison Brie, Paul F. Tompkins

Where to Watch: Netflix

Why You Should Watch: The first three seasons have only gotten funnier and more profound.

Fun Fact: You can actually visit the Tumblr of season 3 restaurant critic Samantha.

Bojack Horseman at Netflix (release date to be announced)

SuperMansion: Season 2

What It’s About: Titanium Rex leads a group of superheroes who are totally not The Justice League or The Avengers at all.

Voiced By: Bryan Cranston, Yvette Nicole Brown, Jillian Bell, Keegan-Michael Key, Tucker Gilmore, Zeb Wells, Tom Root, Heidi Gardner

Where to Watch: Crackle

Why You Should Watch: A Community reunion of voices Yvette Nicole Brown and Jim Rash.

Fun Fact: Cranston produces Supermansion with the creators and animators of Robot Chicken, who are able to make the characters look more realistic than the “action figures” of Robot Chicken.

SuperMansion‘s new episodes are unleashed Thursdays on Crackle

Tag Cloud

spider-man dc Best and Worst Fox Searchlight PlayStation HBO comics Discovery Channel Apple TV richard e. Grant quibi 2019 BBC Heroines miniseries BAFTA Infographic Sneak Peek superhero Travel Channel TBS Film Festival police drama reboot worst Holiday 45 stand-up comedy BBC America Pop Rocketman name the review DirecTV The Witch Calendar LGBTQ Election Sundance Now Mary poppins Marathons blaxploitation MCU Marvel Studios X-Men doctor who Black Mirror japanese discovery NYCC comiccon Adult Swim facebook DC Universe Shondaland Television Academy movies sequel OneApp Drama italian thriller Television Critics Association ID travel dceu IFC Films Pet Sematary crime drama USA Mindy Kaling RT History Crunchyroll tv talk all-time RT21 Bravo a nightmare on elm street Emmys Summer Set visit The Academy Oscars YouTube Apple TV+ Disney Channel Columbia Pictures TLC The Arrangement VH1 chucky unscripted Box Office Endgame Holidays Quiz Fall TV Opinion foreign elevated horror news worst movies Academy Awards Amazon Prime Video Grammys casting latino Superheroe Amazon Studios franchise Interview Awards Superheroes CW Seed Rom-Com zombies Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt south america Mudbound Reality Competition The CW Country scary movies LGBT Netflix YouTube Premium ITV Martial Arts rotten independent Disney+ Disney Plus 2020 007 Cartoon Network scorecard Super Bowl Freeform video blockbuster spinoff Mystery nature Dark Horse Comics biography Hallmark See It Skip It Walt Disney Pictures New York Comic Con historical drama Shudder Women's History Month Sundance TV cartoon Countdown 4/20 YouTube Red Brie Larson cops Polls and Games TV renewals Comedy GoT CMT Elton John boxoffice animated Disney dark Film mission: impossible DGA Teen space Thanksgiving canceled war sag awards video on demand obituary HBO Go venice adventure documentary Showtime harry potter hispanic directors child's play GIFs comedies batman cancelled TV shows VICE medical drama Watching Series criterion Pop TV theme song 2015 Sony Pictures VOD PBS Black History Month black die hard french Esquire Winners television witnail ABC Family First Look Spike Mary Tyler Moore christmas movies critics Tarantino laika comic Alien APB based on movie breaking bad Netflix Christmas movies CBS All Access screen actors guild cooking documentaries Song of Ice and Fire mockumentary BET Awards A24 Writers Guild of America Apple TV Plus FXX anime anthology canceled TV shows Spring TV NBC book Winter TV revenge football indiana jones Red Carpet 2017 Vudu politics TCA Awards Pixar History satire SXSW Video Games binge Disney streaming service children's TV 71st Emmy Awards 21st Century Fox composers movie james bond Schedule concert Extras cancelled E! Premiere Dates IFC Rock toy story kids adaptation political drama sitcom Musical slashers The Purge boxing twilight Toys CNN Spectrum Originals stop motion mutant MTV Tumblr TNT SundanceTV USA Network Hulu romance best DC Comics National Geographic Amazon Britbox Star Trek reviews Pride Month Ghostbusters Pirates Trailer Valentine's Day WarnerMedia streaming Anna Paquin BBC One diversity comic books hollywood Chernobyl Nominations finale docudrama Tubi Tomatazos Lifetime social media Year in Review deadpool Horror sequels Marvel Television YA cinemax ESPN Binge Guide Christmas singing competition FX on Hulu spanish 20th Century Fox Star Wars true crime science fiction AMC Fantasy FX 99% disaster rt archives TIFF SDCC Logo emmy awards parents TCA 2017 festival free movies Peacock spy thriller cancelled television Funimation Sci-Fi Lucasfilm ratings zero dark thirty australia dogs serial killer nfl Marvel Character Guide American Society of Cinematographers Trophy Talk Certified Fresh green book Stephen King Musicals Reality Disney Plus Ovation justice league Awards Tour Sundance MSNBC golden globes San Diego Comic-Con cults Turner Trivia fresh crossover remakes Rocky dramedy spain game show Paramount Network joker TCA halloween series Chilling Adventures of Sabrina cars screenings Avengers ABC cats Cosplay Masterpiece Captain marvel crime thriller Creative Arts Emmys renewed TV shows aliens TCA Winter 2020 24 frames talk show toronto werewolf period drama BET what to watch romantic comedy vampires Baby Yoda Lionsgate A&E Action Epix Arrowverse TCM Classic Film stoner PaleyFest fast and furious Music 2018 versus Syfy Universal Comics on TV Fox News nbcuniversal universal monsters 2016 robots OWN Kids & Family crime archives Ellie Kemper Amazon Prime GLAAD E3 WGN festivals Nickelodeon Western First Reviews jamie lee curtis ghosts Paramount spanish language Hallmark Christmas movies game of thrones DC streaming service zombie Comedy Central Podcast Nat Geo cancelled TV series transformers dragons El Rey classics psychological thriller teaser The Walking Dead Acorn TV sports strong female leads Animation Turner Classic Movies rotten movies we love Warner Bros. TV Land halloween tv Lifetime Christmas movies FOX Cannes supernatural CBS asian-american HBO Max TruTV Hear Us Out Crackle Photos Biopics Mary Poppins Returns films 72 Emmy Awards psycho natural history Family technology Starz Food Network Comic Book Emmy Nominations indie President hist award winner