Older versions of cartoon characters

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Since the 1970s, just as animation studios have "re-imagined" famous and well-known cartoon characters either as babies, children or even younger teenagers, they have also occasionally presented young cartoon characters either as teenagers (The Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show), pre-teens (All Grown Up!), or even merely increasing their age by a year (Disney's Doug).

In comic books and strips, some characters will occasionally be allowed to age in real time, or the comic will jump ahead in time to when the characters in question are older teenagers or adults.

This trend may have been first seen in animation in 1971 when Pebbles Flintstone and Bamm Bamm Rubble, the two infant children of the Flintstone and Rubble families, were presented as teenagers on The Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show. However, an earlier example comes from comics of the 1960s, in which the Legion of Super Heroes were occasionally presented as adults.

As seen when younger versions of cartoon characters are introduced, there is sometimes a problem with continuity. In The Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show, Bamm-Bamm's strength seemed to have disappeared as a teenager, although in the telefilm Hollyrock-a-Bye-Baby (made in 1993), Bamm-Bamm had regained his strength.


  • All Grown Up! (Klasky-Csupo, Nickelodeon, 2003) based on the series Rugrats. This series presents the toddler-aged regulars on Rugrats (Tommy Pickles, Chuckie Finster, etc.) as pre-teens attending junior high school.
  • Several of the main cast members who were children or teenagers during the timeline of Avatar: The Last Airbender reappear as elderly adults in Legend of Korra.
  • In Beavis and Butt-Head, from the episode Crying, the duo are seen at a retirement home after 80 years. Butt-Head is still giving Beavis a hard time for "crying", but he dies shortly afterward, much to Beavis's delight.
  • In Ben 10: Alien Force Ben and his cousin Gwen are five years older (now at fifteen) and Kevin is no longer a villain, and instead works with Ben and Gwen to save the world.
  • Death Note – When Near and Mello are introduced in episode 27 it states that a few years have passed since L's death in the previous episode meaning they are all a few years older than previously shown.
  • Digimon Adventure 02 (2000), also commonly written as Digimon 02/Digimon Zero Two, involves the main enemy the Digi-destined thought they had destroyed in the previous season, but has been putting in practice his evil schemes even after his defeat. In this season, the original Digi-destined grew up into Junior High School students (except for Kari and T.K. who became pre-teens) and could no longer watch over the Digital World and be with their Digimon friends. A new generation of Digi-Destined, composed of three new children named Davis, Yolei and Cody, as well as Kari and T.K. and their digimon Gatomon and Patamon, are given a new kind of digivice known as D3, which allows them to be transported to the Digital World through computers. Three new digimon named Veemon, Hawkmon and Armadillomon joined the group, along with the villain-turned-hero Ken and his digimon Wormmon.
  • Max Goof and his best friend-neighbor Pete Jr. (PJ) started out as 11-year-olds in the Disney series Goof Troop and became teenagers in the movie A Goofy Movie and its sequel An Extremely Goofy Movie. Max Goof himself has been shown in six different ages in all his appearances.
  • Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood features adult versions of characters from Mister Rogers' Neighborhood of Make-Believe.
  • Doraemon (Studio Pierrot, Asahi TV 1973-2005) Nobita Nobi, Shizuka Minamoto, Takeshi Goda, Suneo Honekawa is older as teenager and adult.
  • Disney's Doug (Jumbo Pictures, Disney, 1996) consisted of new episodes for ABC of the former Nickelodeon series. In this series, the characters were aged from 11 to 12½, with the characters now attending middle school and given several changes (such as a new baby sister for series star Doug, Roger Klotz becoming wealthy, and so forth).
  • In Ed Edd n Eddy's episode entitled "Take This Ed and Shove It", all of the characters are shown in their old (90 to 100 years) forms. In the unedited version of the episode, The Kanker Sisters are not shown. Their old selves can only be seen in the deleted scenes of the episode, along with the babies they have with the Eds. It was removed from television broadcast because of its sexual innuendo.
  • Gadget and the Gadgetinis (2001–2003, DiC Entertainment) takes place after the original series. Penny is now twelve years old.
  • Naruto: Shippūden – The second series of the anime Naruto. Takes place after Naruto's two and a half-year training session with Jiraya. The characters are all 15 years old now except for Neji, Tenten, and Rock Lee who are a year older than the rest of the original group of 12 genin, and the jounin and chunin from the first series such as Iruka, Kakashi, Kurenai,and Asuma along with others whose ages vary.
  • The Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show – ran from September 11, 1971 to September 2, 1972 on CBS, was a television spin-off of The Flintstones. It was produced by Hanna-Barbera Productions. The show followed neighbors Pebbles Flintstone and Bamm Bamm Rubble in their teenage years. The episodes were set mainly in the duo's activities at Bedrock High School, in the prehistoric town of Bedrock. The cast of characters included Pebbles (voice provided by Sally Struthers) and Bamm Bamm (Jay North); their friends Moonrock (Lenny Weinrib), Fabian (Carl Esser), Penny (Mitzi McCall), Cindy (Gay Hartwig) and Wiggy (Gay Hartwig).
  • The Powerpuff Girls (Hanna-Barbera/Cartoon Network Studios): The episode "City of Clipsville" had a flashback that featured the girls, as well as the Rowdyruff Boys, as teenagers. The explanation of this being presented as a flashback was that the Powerpuff Girls had sped up time.
  • Babar and the Adventures of Badou featured Babar's oldest son Pom who is grown up and is the father of Badou.
  • Quack Pack (The Walt Disney Company, 1996). This series featured the classic Disney Duck characters (Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, and Huey, Dewey and Louie), though with Huey, Dewey and Louie presented as being teenagers who spoke in conventional (and not duck-like) voices. Several 1950s theatrical Disney shorts, however, were the first to present teenage versions of Donald's nephews.
  • The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest (Hanna-Barbera, 1996). This spin-off of the 1960s animated series featured Jonny Quest and his friend Hadji as teenagers instead of as children.
  • Richie Rich (Hanna-Barbera, 1980). The Harvey Comics character appeared in his own animated television series, which shared a timeslot with Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo as The Richie Rich/Scooby-Doo Show. In the animated series, Richie and his pals are somewhat older, around 12 years old; Richie wears a red sweater with the letter "R" in front.
  • Sabrina's Secret Life (DiC Entertainment, 2003) originally aired in syndication in 2003 as a spin-off of Sabrina: The Animated Series. In this series, Sabrina Spellman is a teenager (though a year or two younger than her original comic version) attending Greendale High School. Chloe has moved away, and Gem Stone attends a private school far away from Greendale (even though none of them is mentioned in a single episode). Sabrina's new best friend is a girl named Maritza; additionally, Sabrina still has a crush on her friend, Harvey Kinkle.
  • The Phineas and Ferb episode Act Your Age featured Phineas and Ferb as teenagers.
  • Sonic X, (TMS Enterntainment, 2003), Chris Thorndyke and his friends Helen, Frances, and Danny are shown to be six years older in the 52nd episode - onward (except that Chris's age regresses back to six years earlier (12 years old) in Episode 53, when he visits Sonic and company once again). The character Cosmo also ages to adulthood in Episode 77.
  • The animated Star Trek:The Animated Series episode "The Lorelei Signal" shows the crew visiting a planet aged rapidly. In this episode,the crew are 27 years older with a race of beautiful Loreleian women.


  • The Legion of Super-Heroes occasionally presented in 1960s stories adventures of the "Adult Legion," stories about the adult versions of the Legionnaires.
  • The comic strip Funky Winkerbean initially presented its lead characters as teenagers. In the 1990s, however, the strip decided to jump ahead in time and present its characters as young adults some years after high school.
  • The characters in the comic strip Luann have been continuously aging (approximately one month per reader year) since a character revamp in 1999.
  • Nightwing features Batman's sidekick Robin (Dick Grayson) as an adult crimefighter.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (The Archie Comic) featured a special issue that took place 25 years into the future, featuring older versions of all the characters, including two timelines, one where Sonic married Sally Acorn and became King, the other where Shadow became King instead.
  • Monica Teen features the characters of Monica's Gang comics as teenagers to 15 years. The plot has a manga-style and the characters also have different characteristics from its original version. The characters were also seen in older versions of the original comic series, but no connection with this spin-off.
  • Luluzinha Teen e sua Turma features the characters of Little Lulu as teenagers. Has a very similar to Monica Teen, including by being in manga-style.


  • DeviantArt also has adult and teenage versions of characters in fan art.

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