Top 6 Darkest Hanna Barbera Episodes

Ominous voice: Be afraid! Be very afraid! Strider: It’s time for the darker side of Hanna Barbara! When people think of cartoons that look at
the darker side of animation… I thought Hanna Barbara shows would be pretty unlikely to top the list.. Hanna Barabara, with its bright colours, cheesy laughtracks, and frequent product placements… Seems like the byproduct of an innocent age. But, well, let’s take a look together. So let’s check out the
“Top 6 Darkest Hanna Barbara Episodes”! Number six… “Scooby-Doo Mystery Incorporated” – “Come Undone”
[Series finale/Season 2 – Episode 26] Evil Entity: I am flesh now! *FLESH!* Strider: ..Was definitely something I was expecting to hear in a “Scooby-Doo” episode. But here we are! As I said before, Hanna Barbara isn’t well-known for making horror-themed programs. Even shows like “Scooby-Doo” and its gazillion spin-offs are more playfully spooky than outright scary. However, “Come Undone,” the series finale to the “Scooby-Doo” incarnation “Mystery Incorporated”… Features the Scooby Gang comeing face-to-face with an existential threat to ALL of mankind! And afterwards, a different sort of existential crisis. The episode opens with the series main antagonist, the Evil Entity, has been freed from its prison… And will now usher in the end of the world. Already, this is relatively uncharted territory for the “Scooby-Doo” franchise. The Evil Entity then takes on the form of a talking [Parrot] named [Professor] Pericles… Stuffing his tentacles down [Professor] Pericles’ throat, in order to possess [his] body! The Entity then proceeds to consume people into its mass! Absorbing them like the blob! Then, a group of sharp-toothed monsters kidnap various characters. Presenting them to the Evil Entity, who eats them alive. Daphne herself breaks down, unable to watch the horrible spectacle! It appears that all is lost… To the point that Scooby-Doo screams… Scooby: HELP ME! PLEASE! Strider: To nobody in particular. To see a character like Scooby-Doo, who has cheered people up for 50 years now… Be in genuine mortal danger, powerless to save himself, and shouting into the void, is a truly sorrowful sight. Scooby-Doo: Rhaggy! Relp! Strider: Of course, the Scooby gang does save the day. But when they do, they run into something.. disturbing… The death of the Evil Entity created an alternate world. One where the [known] lives of the Scooby gang never happened. Imagine if you woke up one morning to find you were living in a world… Which was the complete opposite to what your entire life had been leading up to. Imagine that your friends, your family, and all the people you know. are in an unrecognizable state. That’s what happened to the Scooby Gang. Mrs. Rogers: Our son, president of the chef’s club, winner of the Ultimate Teen Chef award… Shaggy: But.. I… I’m, like, a slacker! It seems in this new world they never formed a mystery solving company. They never once heard themselves be called
meddling kids by any crook in a costume! The psychadelic Mystery Machine is now
just a plain, White van. However, in this new world without them, everyone seems fine. Bringing the question, was the world better off without the Scooby Gang? I don’t know. In this new world, they feel like.. Their life has no meaning. There are no mysteries in their lives anymore. Velma laments– “What’s the point?” But, in an interesting cameo… Harlan Ellison calls them in to help solving mysteries at a university across the country. And, much to my mixed feelings,
Mystery Incorporated is reborn! The episode still has a happy ending, and it’s still very much a “Scooby-Doo” episode… So I put it early on the list. Shaggy: Like, zoinks! These crazy lava pits are everywhere! “The Flintstones” – “On the Rocks”
[2001 TV Animated Film] This was a very late… More adult entry into the “Flintsones” franchise. In fact, it was made *40 years* after the original Flintstones aired in 1960. It was actually dedicated to Joseph Barbara
the creator of the series. As well as Hoyt Curtin, a long-time Hanna Barbara composer. In this episode, to call Fred and Wilma’s marriage
“on the rocks” would be putting it mildly. In fact, it starts out pretty sad to watch. The two are so sick of each other that Wilma physically attacks Fred during a marriage counsellor meeting. And the rest of the meeting is just spent jeering at each other. While it’s certainly understandable, and relatable, for a marriage to have problems… In this case, just watching them continually insult each other just feels so bitter and spite-filled. Wilma (mocking Fred): Oh, hi, Barney! You wanna do something stupid today? Hopefully something that gets me hurt! Fred: Alright, Wilma. Strider: Betty and Barney are
considerably happier though… And try to arrange a trip for Fred and Wilma to… “Rockapulco” … Oh that pun… I guess some parts of this show never change. Better: Oh! Barney: Betty. (Betty and Barney audibly kiss lovingly) Fred: Eee-yughk! Strider: But things certainly don’t improve much at first on the trip. In fact, Wilma lashes out at Fred,
and very nearly decides to divorce him. Wilma: You. Me. Us! We’re over! Strider: I gotta say… Divorce is not a subject I remember being discussed in the original series. Then, after a misunderstanding… Fred even dives into drinking too much at the bar! Barkeep: Name your poison. Fred: Better make it “agua” Julio. On the rocks. There’s a side-plot about some guy named Xavier trying to steal a diamond from Wilma… But my only real interest was what happens with these two. I’ve been watching Fred and Wilma’s marriages ups-and-downs for.. Well, my whole life. Xavier soon threatens to kill Wilma by throwing her into a volcano. And Fred is knocked out. But luckily, the police arrive just in time to save them. Fred and Wilma do feel their relationship has gotten better during the trip… But then… (Aggravated sigh) Betty and Barney start bickering… Because bitter marriages are.. Fun for the audience? Barney: You think you deserve anything the way you’ve been acting lately? Betty: And how have I been acting, little man? Strider: This one felt unusually bleak for the “Flintstones” series. But obviously seemed well-intentioned enough. But honestly, Divorce, death, and assault were not subjects I expected “The Flintstones” to ever cover! “On the Rocks” is an interesting episode,
and worth a look if you can find it. Fred: My life, as I know it, is over. “Tom & Jerry” – “Heavenly Puss”
[Episode 42 – Premiered 1949] I think many would recognize this short from when they were a kid. But probably not fully remember it. It’s memorable because it’s such a severe departure from the “Tom & Jerry” formula we’re used to. At the beginning of “Heavenly Puss”… The lively expressions on Tom and Jerry’s antics are loud and clear. But when a piano falls down the stairs and hits Tom… He finally finds himself in a cartoon violence encounter that’s too much for him to handle. He actually can’t dust this one off and walk away. The thing about these old cartoons is we know, whatever happens… Whether it be guns, swords, or blunt force trauma… We always know the characters will get back up again. And are always unharmed when the next episode begins. The idea of Tom dying from his injuries is a bit.. Unsettling and weird! It’s like I saw Mickey Mouse walking around
Disney Land with his head off. The magic is gone! We see Tom’s soul leave his body, sailing up into the night on an escalator to Heaven. This is where the melancholy really starts to set in. That’s right, what if Tom and Jerry had an encounter… Where Tom outright *dies*! Along with Tom, a bag full of drowned kittens
are the new arrivals in the afterlife. Anyway, due to his lifelong obsession
of harassing Jerry… Tom must get Jerry to sign
a certificate of forgiveness or burn in Hell. The hell is cartoony enough where the bullgod is the devil. Although there are some half-hearted slapstick gags. But “Heavenly Puss” is dour in its seriousness, as we watch Tom die and be threatened to be burned in Hell. Tom gets the signature, but it’s too late. And he falls through the long, lovingly painted abyss. Once again, we get a lot of introspection in this episode. With Tom looking back at what his entire life had lead up to. And seeing Tom despereately beg to Jerry… Is surprisingly sombering. I mean, we get the.. “It’s All a Dream” fake-out at the end. But it’s still a very bleak episode. And the third Darkest Hanna Barbara episode is… “Dexter’s Lab” – “Way of the Dee Dee”
[Season 1 – Episode 10A] Like may on this list, “Way of the Dee Dee” involves a surprising amount of existential questioning– For a Hanna Barbara episode. The episode begins with Dexter, unsurprisingly,
losing his temper at Dee Dee. Dexter: Stupid! Stupid! Stupid! Strider: Dee Dee has a surprisingly deep reply. Saying that Dexter is also stupid in a way. Because he has shut himself off from the outside world. Which we.. All kinda knew. Dee Dee: Toil away, alone in the dark. Searching for answers to questions nobody asked. Locked away from the world, never to explore the true mysteries of life. Strider: He spent his life experimenting on life,
but not experiencing it. At this, Dexter has an epiphany. And begs Dee Dee to teach him how to be a free spirit. She does, so the two spend the day together. Dee Dee: Look here, Dexter. What do you see? Dexter: I see a Relacus Ingris it’s a… Dee Dee: Yes, yes dear. I know you can examine it. But can you *see* it? Strider: Dee Dee’s free spirit causes Dexter a moment of insanity. And in one momentus outburst, he destroys his entire lab. His life’s work. Realizing what he’s done, the episode ends with Dexter quietly and somberly beginning to rebuild. What’s dark to me here is that, without his original role and purpose, Dexter’s entire life falls apart. In the final shot of Dexter rebuilding… It’s as though he’s resigned himself to this role forever. Because that’s the only way he can function. It’s at least a very interesting, different episode of “Dexter’s Lab.” Unlike any other I’ve ever seen,
and definitely worth a look. And the second Darkest Hanna Barbara episode is… “The PowerPuff Girls” – “See Me, Feel Me, Gnomey”
[Season 5 – Episode 12 – Banned in USA] This episode was so controversial that it never aired on TV in America. There’s a multitude of explanations as for why. And that’s no surprise. This ambitious rock opera has plenty of
deep ideas to discuss. And plenty for controversy mongers to cry foul at. There were some major concerns
of all the flashing lights… Which some viewers feared would trigger epilepsy. Obviously, I’ve left them out of this video. Then there’s all the political
and religious ideas within the plot. After a brutal losing battle with virtually every villain they’ve faced… The PowerPuff Girls wish for peace on Earth. And what follows is some
surprisingly evocative imagery. Some people think the shot of the flaming buildings & the destroyed city might’ve been too evocative of 9/11. So some think that’s why it didn’t air. Cartoons were, understandably, pretty squeamish to show destructive imagery at the time. Just look at what happened to [the “SpongeBob SquarePants” episode “Just One Bite”]! A teardrop falls to the ground revealing a Gnome. The Gnome will usher in peace and an end to crime. If the girls give up their powers. The deal’s made, and peace comes to Townsville. But we begin to see how the darkness spreads. And here begins one of the darkest concepts of all… At the cost of Townsville’s peace, comes a loss of all individuality and freedom. In fact, this Gnome starts a cult. The people give up their individuality, becoming slaves to the Gnome’s cult. All wearing the same quasi-religious outfit. I’m surprised no one made issue of the fact that the uniforms resemble that of the KKK. There’s a controversial, but powerful musical number by the Professor, portraying him as a butcher… Slicing and grilling images of the American dream. And he ponders the trade-off of liberty and security. Professor: Do the people have to be~e♫
Freedom Beef!♩ Strider: Ultimately, the girls decide that good and evil must coexist. And freedom must reign. Life is nothing without freedom. Even if it means the existence of villains to stop. And I completely agree. On his official Tumblr, “PowerPuff Girls” creator Craig McCracken… Explained that episode was stopped from airing because of some rubble that looked like crosses. And apparently, some of the extras resembled Jeebus. This baffled McCracken, with him saying it was a total surprise and not at all their intention. Even if it was their intention, who cares!? We have a powerful critique here to children about freedom and safety that makes them think! It just.. (exasperated sigh) While the execution of the songs can feel a little sloppy and off-tone… I mean, I’m sorry, but some of these characters *cannot* sing. Him: I will take control and
I will bow down your city to all~~ Strider: I really respect the message that they’re trying to give to kids here. All these questions about human nature… Freedom, and crowd mentality. Questions which plague mankind every day. And it’s all presented through rock music. And before we get to number one, I just have a quick Honourable Mention. The Ghost Scene from
“The Good, The Bad, and the Huckleberry” [1988] I just really love this movie, it’s probably not that dark, but I just really wanted to mention it. Huckleberry Hound fakes his own death+basically uses the entire Hanna Barbara crew to pretend to be a ghost. I definitely recommend this movie. It’s a classic film to rock with. And the number 1 *Darkest* Hanna Barbara episode is… “Captain Planet” – “Population Bomb”
[Season ONE – Episode 21] An episode of “Captain Planet” that’s based on an outdated idea that formed during the Great Depression… In the [1930’s]! The idea that there are too many people being born, and we’re gonna eat each other like rats! Jeebus… In fact, the Planeteers recommend to people that they start having less children! Linka: I think everyone should have fewer children. Gi: In some countries, the government reccomends that some people only have two children. Strider: I just don’t know where to begin with this one. Did they even open a book for this one? Did they do their research? China’s having a major lack of
qualified worker crisis right now… Because of their, now abandoned,
1 child policy from the past! They have to pay their couples to have children now, this is just so stupid! Many people in developed countries
don’t even WANT kids! It’s a real problem now! Ugh, jeez, anyway! Wheeler meets a society of mice who gained sentience thanks to a.. nearby bomb testing? Alright, apparently their city
Mice Land started out as a paradise. But then their population got too big! And now the streets are filthy,
the skies have turned brown and dirty… And animals were hunted to extinction for food. But wait, it gets better! It turned out Mice Land is also under a dictatorship! This dictator releases a super-weapon… That begins to wipe out the entire mouse population. Wheeler offers to save his mouse friend
Pibald, and his family… But he refuses. Deciding his race has gotten what they deserved for overpopulating the island… So they all deserve to die. Pibald: My people and I are doomed. But yours can still be saved. Don’t let this happen to you! Don’t let there be more people than your world can hold! This is just. SO. *STUPID!* Anyway, the whole mouse population dies horribly, but fortunately Wheeler is rescued. So we’re taught the lesson of an outdated book written in the [1960’s]! I can’t even fathom this one! Because our population is already facing the issue of a lower birth rate in developed countries! Almost unanimously around the world! (Loud groan) To summarize quickly, when your kids are less likely to die at birth, there’s a higher education rate… And we’re able to live more comfortably. We discover the birth rate globally
takes a major nose-dive. I could go over the long-term widespread studies on fertility rate trends… But we’re meant to be talking about Captain Planet here! So check out In a Nuteshell’s discussion on over-population if you’d like to know more. In case you hadn’t guessed, I don’t like this episode! Yeah, it’s dark, there’s a lot of dying,
but it’s also severely misleading. Captain Planet: The power is yours. Strider: If there were a national archive
constructed for cartoons… The decades of content produced by Hanna Barbara would probably be enough for an entire warehouse! Some of these darker spots in their long history give children more insight into not just themselves… But into human nature. And the beliefs of others! They can help encourage kids to think. And if you think I missed a particularly *dark* Hanna Barbara episode… Feel free to leave your own thoughts
in the comments below! And as always, thanks for watching!
And I’ll see you next time! Subtitled by (someone annoyed by YouTube telling me I’m not authorized to contribute) Jadrek Myers.
Commissioned by Phantom Strider, himself.
Stay tuned for a fun-fact from Jadrek! While the number 666 is associated with the devil in Christian beliefs, in Numerology (the beliefs of numbers holding special meaning), the number 6 itself is the number of knowledge. It wasn’t associated with imperfection until the belief in God
became more widespread.

100 thoughts on “Top 6 Darkest Hanna Barbera Episodes

  • I disagree that Captain Planet episode was bad or somehow toxic.
    My country pays people for having children – about 130$ every month for one kid.
    Because of that there's way too many kids, schools and pre-schools can't handle them all, people are having kids just for free extra money, lowest of the low gets extra money on alcohol just for having kids and so on…
    Baby boomers had kids mostly because society were telling them to because of what so many people grew up in toxic families with parents that never should have kids in the first place.
    Fuck government or their problems that they made themselves, what matters is that people have kids responsibly not like a goddamn rabbits because "there's not enough kids".
    We're not animals, we don't need many babies just to survive, we need well raised and mentally healthy people to survive.
    Overpopulation is massive problem, it stops society from growing and developing, i was able to go to school and to collage because i was from period of decrease in the birth rate but kids younger than me won't be able to do that because there's just too many of them. Now instead of well educated society we will end up with bunch of uneducated people, not to even mention how many of them will end up unemployed and poor because of not enough working places.
    Now think how easy it's to manipulate uneducated people, it's pathetically easy so dictatorship in overpopulated country is not such a unrealistic concept as you think, for examples look to the history books and for example way USRR (country of my grandparents) were manipulating people just by changing education, making it less available and by forcing them to have more kids so even less people can get educated and rebel.
    This episode of Captain Planet was more than right – overpopulation leads to catastrophes, people needs to be more responsible with having children.

  • For Flintstones On The Rock, there's a slight error. William Hanna was the one who died while the movie was in production. Joseph Barbera died in 2006.

  • I love Hanna-Barbera cartoons. I grew up watching them on cartoon network and boomerang. My favorite animated series of theirs include The flintstones, the Jetsons, yogi bear, huckleberry hound, tom and jerry, the Snorks and many more.

  • That Powerpuff Girls episode briefly aired in Canada. Honestly, when I first watched it back then, I found it so unlike the way the show usually went that I had to wonder if it was some TV special, and not the actual show. But i did enjoy it.

  • I always found that overpopulation thing to be full of shit. Especially since now, we’re dealing with low birth rates all over the world! Governments should be reasonable about maintaining the human population instead of controlling the number of children that couples supposedly should have.

  • Weird because the PPG one i saw it like dozens of times here in my country, it seems that while it was not aired in USA was still aired on other countries just fine specially in Latin America, prehaps because in here we arent as judgemental as people are there? i dunno but its quite weird when people talk about this episode like its a very controversial one but in actuality is quite tame and somehow dull because how godawful some of the songs are specially in spanish.

    And the Captain Planet one well most of the show was like that, yeah you had your fair share of generic "dont pollute your world" forced shtick and "scientific" stuff that was somehow "well researched" but most of it was just "lets do this because the show is themed about not polluting and eviromental shlock and because its for children who cares anyway?" and most of them were pretty damn lame to be honest, dark yeah but pretty damn lame noneless.

  • The Captain Planet episode was made in the 1990s. What you ve said about the declining population world wide (if its true), is the data from the latest years.

  • Strider: posts a video about Hanna-Barbera
    Me: immediately smashes like button

    Great to see that you also love the Huckleberry Hound movie. Another thing that was pretty dark about it was the fact that it touched on death a lot (the sheriff of Two Bit died, the citizens predicted that Huck would die, etc.), which is pretty uncommon in a Huck cartoon. For me, the creepiest scene in the movie was the farewell party scene, where they gifted Huck things like a coffin and a headstone. Daws Butler, the original voice actor for Huck, Yogi, Quick Draw and others, died three days after the movie aired on TV. As much as I love the Ghost Huck scene, the farewell scene is still one of the creepiest parts of the movie because of that.

  • Only once I watched "See Me, Feel Me, Gnomey". I was thirteen, and it was on a Saturday morning. I understood none of it at the time. I didn't understand its messages, I didn't pay attention to politics. All I got was that the girls give up their powers for peace, but they see that things are made worse and have their powers from realizing how much they need to be superheroes.

  • Most of that Scooby series was dark as hell. Fred's entire family storyline kills. And Danny Darrow's little "mommy? you came back to me?" hurts my soul.

  • What about some dark episodes of Swat Katz,Smurfs,The New Adventures of Jonny Quest. and The Greatest Adventures Stories From The Bible. As well as some HB Specials and Movies such as The Halloween Tree,Once Upon A Forest,and Scooby Doo on Zombie Island.

  • Actually,Captain Planet was originally produced by DiC,the company that made Inspector Gadget,Heathcliff,the Madeline series and specials,and of course,SatAM and The Adventures of Sonic The Hedgehog. Hanna Barbera took over the series in 1993 for its final season and renamed the show The New Adventures of Captain Planet.

  • Hate to be that one nitpicky nerd, but "The Flintstones: On the Rocks" was actually dedicated to Bill Hanna (who passed away several months before the TV movie's release), not Joe Barbera.

  • Population Bomb was a good choice, but I think Under the Glass might have been the darker captain planet episode, in it, humanity is literally shown to be mutated and destroyed.

  • Dear phantomstrider may you do a video of the worst forgotten barbie movies my sister keeps watching them their all on stan.

  • I do think that we need to be smarter about how many people we keep having. We need to find a balance of people and resources. Now I don't agree that we should kill babies or kill people too control the population we just need to be smarter and encourage people to have kids when they are ready for kids.

  • I've always loved how whenever you get to number 1 on any video of yours, that you always seem so genuine on both your critique and your personal feelings for any given topic. You always seem to give me a new reason to like and respect you whenever you present yourself. Good video as usual Strider, keep up the good work.

    On another note, I recall you saying that you appreciate Homestar Runner. Have you ever considered doing a list on that Subject?

  • Sees #1: strider hates on dark episode.
    Usually, these dark episodes would be entertaining because the way the concept used against the hero. But this one has nothing to do with the hero… Ok.

  • Populating the world is important once those children grow up they must be taught what is right and what is wrong, what is normal and what is not, that's how this world goes around because God made it that way. 👍

  • The Caption Planet episode Mind Pollution is also pretty dark, in it the villain Verminous Skumm gets a bunch of teenagers hooked on this drug he invented called Bliss, Linka's cousin Boris also gets her hooked on it when he spikes her food with it, eventually Boris dies after he breaks through a window, actually bleeding a rarity for this series, then Verminous Skumm gives him a whole bottle of the stuff which he overdoses on, Captain Planet destroys the Bliss and gets Verminous Skumm arrested but nothing can bring back Linka's cousin.

  • I’m surprised you didn’t talk about the Tom and Jerry episode where they both commit suicide by the end of the episode because both of their girlfriends dumped them.

  • My friend once told me about the heavenly puss in (I think) 2nd grade, and referred to it as the episode where Tom goes to the underworld. I doubted it, but I guess it actually does exist.


    Also, the mouse city in Captain Planet is uncannily like (and may have even been inspired by) the "Mouse Utopia" experiments of John B. Calhoun.

  • Tom and Jerry blue cat blues tracks toms spiral into depression and ends with both tom and Jerry both having resigned to commit suicide sitting on the train tracks as a train whistle can be heard.

  • 3 things:
    1. Number 1 looked really, Really, REALLY Dumb.
    2. Mystery Incorporated was refreshingly darker in my opinion.
    3. Why did you pick See me, Fell me, Gnomey for Powerpuff Girls over, well any other episode?
    Was it because you already talked about the other episodes a lot?

  • Malthusian population theory (what you're talking about in your top pick) was formulated in 1798 not the 1920s, although it was certainly still being talked about seriously in that period.  Pretty funny, given your criticizing the writers for not doing their research.

  • I started believing that Jerry was the true antagonist, always trying to push Tom's button. There are many episodes apart from Heavenly Puss where Jerry makes life for Tom a living hell! (no pun intended). Most of the time, Tom is minding his own business or trying to do a job, and Jerry decides to get him in trouble.
    Also, I don't think I've ever seen that episode of Captain Planet…until now I thought the darkest was when Linka's cousin dies of a drug overdose O_O;

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