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Top 20 Stupidly Overpowered Cartoon Characters

VOICE OVER: Ryan Wild
Part of the joy of cartoons is not worrying about realism, like having characters that are stupidly overpowered. For this list, we'll be looking at characters from cartoons that have exhibited an absurd amount of power in some way, shape, or form. We'll be excluding anime and shows adapted from superhero comics. Our countdown includes Bill Cipher from “Gravity Falls” (2012-16), Prismo from “Adventure Time” (2010-), Popeye from “Popeye the Sailor” (1960-62), He-Man from “He-Man and the Masters of the Universe” (1983-85), and more!
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Part of the joy of cartoons is not worrying about realism, like having characters that are stupidly overpowered. For this list, we’ll be looking at characters from cartoons that have exhibited an absurd amount of power in some way, shape, or form. We’ll be excluding anime and shows adapted from superhero comics. Our countdown includes Bill Cipher from “Gravity Falls” (2012-16), Prismo from “Adventure Time” (2010-), Popeye from “Popeye the Sailor” (1960-62), He-Man from “He-Man and the Masters of the Universe” (1983-85), and more! Which ridiculously powerful character is your favorite? Let us know in the comments!

#20: Popeye

“Popeye the Sailor” (1960-62)

Noticeable by his huge forearms, squinting eye and corncob pipe, this former U.S. Navy soldier is maybe one of the first truly overpowered characters. With nothing but a can of spinach, Popeye is able to take out battle submarines with his bare hands, send foes thrice his size flying into the air with a single punch, lift just about any object with ease and basically can take endless damage if it means protecting his beloved Olive Oyl. His willingness to protect weaker and defenseless creatures from harm makes him not only overpowered, but also one of the more noble characters on this list.

#19: Rex Salazar

“Generator Rex” (2010-13)

Deus Ex Machina? Try Deus Rex Machina, since the star of Man of Action’s “Generator Rex” is easily one of the most powerful characters in all of animation. By controlling the microscopic machines called nanites within himself and others, Rex is capable of creating weaponized builds (like his punk busters and smack hands), controlling technology, healing himself and curing nanite-infected humans from their horrific and monstrous mutations. We included Rex both because of the strength of his machines and because of the extent of his nanite-controlling powers, these factors making him way overpowered in his universe and in animation as a whole.

#18: Grim

“The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy” (2001-08)

The titular Mandy was certainly a strong contender for this entry, seeing how her intimidating scowl and nerves of steel have brought even the fiercest of supernatural beings to their knees, but she doesn’t have any actual superpowers. Grim on the other hand, has a TON of power, being the personification of death and all. Armed with his scythe and a plethora of magical powers and knowledge, Grim’s ability to manipulate life and death as we know it is enough to consider him incredibly overpowered.

#17: Brock Samson

“The Venture Bros.” (2003-)

He might not have any actual superpowers, but Doctor Venture’s bodyguard is practically unstoppable. Paying tribute to Race Bannon and Doc Savage, and serving as a spoof of pro wrestler Psycho Sid Vicious, Brock Samson is a bloodthirsty killing machine whose years of spy experiences makes him one of, if not the deadliest agent in the entire O.S.I. In fact, in early seasons of “The Venture Bros.,” there was rarely an episode where Brock didn’t end up covered in the blood of his enemies. Heck, the guy even survived in space without a spacesuit! If that’s not overpowered, we don’t know what is.

#16: Danny Phantom

“Danny Phantom” (2004-07)

Due to an accident involving an inter-dimensional portal, young Danny Fenton was turned into Danny Phantom, a superhero with all the powers of a ghost: flight, invisibility, and intangibility. But that’s not all; as the series went on, Danny developed even more ghost abilities, including a ghostly energy beam, cryokinesis, the power to duplicate himself, and his all-powerful ghostly wail. Danny’s abilities are as numerous as they are powerful, and he only got stronger over time, with an alternate future version of the character showing us just how great his potential power was.

#15: The Avatar (Aang & Korra)

“Avatar: The Last Airbender” franchise (2005-)

In the world of Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko’s “Avatar” franchise, there exists benders, super-powered martial artists who can master one of the four elements of water, earth, fire, and air. There is one bender who can master all four elements, the Avatar, whose power is unrivaled in both entries of the beloved franchise. Both Avatar Aang and Avatar Korra have shown immense bending abilities that go beyond just mastering the elements, as both can energy-bend, allowing them to take away others’ bending abilities. To top it all off, when either of them use the avatar state, they become practically unstoppable.

#14: Captain Planet

“Captain Planet and the Planeteers” (1990-96)

Earth, Fire, Wind, Water, and Heart. No, we’re not still talking about Aang. By these powers combined, Captain Planet is formed, fighting against pollution for the protection of the planet. Captain Planet’s control over the elements that form him, as well as his abilities of transmutation, flight, and super-strength, are enough to consider him one of the most powerful cartoon characters. But, what made him truly overpowered was the fact that he always manifested a deus ex machina, something that could help him and the Planeteers save the day, no matter how grim the situation. This ability was a trope of the cartoons of the 80s and 90s, and Captain Planet had it in spades.

#13: Pops

“Regular Show” (2010-17)

Who would have thought that this delightfully sweet, lollipop-shaped old man would turn out to be an all-powerful alien destined to fight for the fate of the universe? It definitely came as a surprise to “Regular Show” fans that the naive, fragile character was so powerful. As the embodiment of good, Pops’ powers awakened in the final season of “Regular Show,” and after some intense training, the character displayed immense cosmic power in the form of telekinesis, energy manipulation, and teleportation, all of which he used to fight his evil brother, Anti-Pops, in a battle for all of existence.

#12: He-Man

“He-Man and the Masters of the Universe” (1983-85)

By various accounts, He-Man is said to be the most powerful man in the entire universe, which alone is enough to consider him an overpowered cartoon character, but if that’s not enough, then let’s look at his powers, abilities, and feats of strength. With the power of his sword, He-Man is granted superhuman speed, indestructible skin, and immense strength. In fact, He-Man is so strong that he was able to lift and throw Castle Grayskull and push the moon out of its orbit with nothing but his bare hands, which is just plain ridiculous. There isn’t an 80s kid who wouldn’t love to see He-Man battle Lion-O to determine who has the greatest power

#11: Klarion

“Young Justice”

Often depicted as a whiny, spoiled brat, this ageless being’s powers know no boundaries. While he looks like your average angsty nine year old, Klarion is a dark magician of the highest order who can manipulate time, space and reality. His wide range of abilities essentially makes the strength and abilities of his opponents obsolete. He can travel between dimensions instantly, summon fire from his fingertips, clone himself..the list goes on. And that’s not even touching on his defensive strength. Even though you can make him go away by destroying his familiar, that's a whole lot easier said than done. While you’ll never defeat Klarion head-on with superhuman powers alone, you might provide him with a good cardio workout, at the very least.

#10: Chaos

“Aladdin” (1994-95)

You may have assumed from the films that Jafar’s genie form is the most overpowered thing in the “Aladdin” world, but the TV series proved this wrong. Believe it or not, there exists a being even more powerful than one that can make any wish come true, and it comes in the form of an ordinary cat. Well, ordinary if you ignore the bat wings. Also known as “The Master Trickster,” Chaos’ reality manipulation skills are second only to Fate itself. In fact, Genie thinks that “he has more power in his little whisker than a whole palace full of Genies.” Based on this, fans have theorized that Chaos could even be a secret Disney god.

#9: Uncle Grandpa

“Uncle Grandpa” (2013-17)

Don’t let the goofy grin and sunny disposition fool you, Uncle Grandpa is a being of almost unknown limitations. What we do know about him is that he is somehow everyone’s uncle and grandpa, he’s ageless, and - with the help of his magical fanny pack - can do practically whatever he wants to. Travel in time? Sure! Create clones of himself? No problem! He can even detach his limbs and make them work independently from him. In the “Uncle Grandpa” and “Steven Universe” crossover special, Uncle Grandpa also displayed reality bending abilities that left even the Crystal Gems frustrated and baffled. It’s just as well he’s dedicated to helping children as he’d make one unstoppable villain.

#8: Prismo

“Adventure Time” (2010-)

In the Land of Ooo, what could be more powerful than the hydrokinetic Vampire King? Well, how about an immortal “Wish Master.” Resembling a flesh-colored human shadow, this two-dimensional being is actually just the figment of an old man’s dream. As an astral projection, Prismo can create whatever he wants to amuse himself, and he can also grant anyone one wish. But, if wishes aren’t specific enough or worthwhile, they could have destructive and unpredictable consequences. Like any genie, Prismo’s one glaring weakness is the physical vessel he’s tied to. This is demonstrated when the Lich kills the dreaming old man, killing Prismo too. Even then, though, Prismo finds a way to come back.

#7: Him

“Powerpuff Girls” (1998-2005)

With an appearance that can be described as a satanic lobster, the Powerpuff Girls’ second most notorious enemy is definitely their number one weirdest. He may also be their most powerful. Though his campy demeanor could make you underestimate him, just saying his real name out loud apparently “strikes fear into the heart’s of men.” When it comes to playing mind games, he’s capable of easily manipulating the emotions of others to make them turn against each other. If that weren’t bad enough, his dark magic also allows him to create illusions, shape-shift, summon monster minions, and even resurrect the dead. He can also beef up his size and appearance to make himself appear more terrifying during battle.

#6: Ben Tennyson

“Ben 10” (2005-08)

Once just an average human boy, Ben Tennyson’s life was forever changed at the age of 10 when he stumbled upon a strange watch that can rewrite its wearer’s DNA to transform them into alien creatures. Named the “Omnitrix,” the device stores the information of a finite number of different species’ who have a wide variety of abilities, giving Ben access to a compact arsenal of superpowers. As well as combat, Ben can also use these alien guises for deceptive purposes. Even without his signature tool, Ben’s quick wits means he can adapt to any sticky situation whether in human or alien form. He even graduated from the Plumber’s Academy with a near perfect score.

#5: Wyrm

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” (2012-)

When Casey Jones came across a mysterious box with magical properties, he had no idea what he was about to let loose on the world. The box turned out to be a “Hypercube,” which is just one of a trio of prisons from the fifth dimension housing powerful “Creators of Chaos.” Considering their reality-warping powers, it’s surprisingly easy to set the creatures loose - you just have to get them to grant three wishes, which is exactly how Wyrm was freed. Wyrm’s wish-granting is of course bound by rules: three wishes only per person; no wishing for more wishes; and no wishing harm on Wyrm. Like all tricksters, though, he can still be dangerously unpredictable.

#4: Aku

“Samurai Jack” (2001-04, 2017)

With a name that literally translates to “evil” in Japanese, Aku is a being of irredeemable darkness. Eons ago, Aku was formed from the last sliver of a larger, darker creature defeated by Odin, Ra, and Rama. He crash-landed on Earth, wiping out the dinosaurs in the process, and went on to rule Japan under a reign of demonic terror. With powers that range from shape-shifting, to eye beams, to necromancy, to manifesting items, to traveling in space and time, Aku is nigh invulnerable to everything except “divine” weapons like Jack’s katana. Aku has also used his shape-shifting powers to travel unnoticed alongside Jack more than once, as testament to his evil might.

#3: Discord

“My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic” (2010-)

Essentially a demigod, Discord does exactly as his name suggests - spreads disharmony. As the embodiment of chaos, Discord suitably looks like several different creatures sewn together, primarily a horse and a dragon. We first encounter him as a statue in Canterlot’s garden, a punishment for causing disruption in the orderly land of Equestria. Though Discord is reformed from villain to anti-hero through the series, his powers are still frighteningly great. His mere presence is enough to warp the fabric of reality, as the ponies notice the chaotic effects of his powers around them after a single crack appears in his statue. When free, he’s implied to be even more powerful than Princess Celestia.

#2: Bill Cipher

“Gravity Falls” (2012-16)

Based on the “Eye of Providence,” otherwise known as the “all-seeing eye of God,” Bill has a wicked sense of humor and the power to back it up. As a “Dream Demon,” Bill can do almost anything he wants inside a person’s mind, from reshaping the world around them, to changing his form and conjuring things from nowhere. He’s also able to influence and possess those in the physical world by making contracts, though his incredible powers are limited in this guise. However, when his true form breaks into our dimension from his “Nightmare Realm,” his unbridled abilities become godlike, enabling him to control time and space as well as reality.

#1: Rick Sanchez

“Rick and Morty” (2013-)

Gassy, crass, and self-destructive, it’s terrifying to think that Rick Sanchez is probably the greatest scientific mind of any universe. In fact, he’s so intellectually superior that countless versions of himself from the multiverse have formed their own self-governing society. The rebellious Rick that we follow from Dimension C-137 is easily capable of time, space, and interdimensional travel. He can also mastermind contingency plans to escape any dire situation and invent whatever he needs to help him - from memory erasure to gene manipulation devices. He even managed to put the devil himself out of business. His fourth-wall breaking moments also imply that he’s even smart enough to know he’s inside a TV show.
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