Animated Shows On Netflix For When You're Over The Real World

Photo: Courtesy of Fox.
Sometimes, you’re in the mood for a deep, dark family drama. And other times, the human race’s darker truths are a bit too much to bear. In cases when laughter takes priority over reality, there’s no better genre to turn to than cartoons. But I’m not talking about Saturday morning road runner cartoons, or Nick at Nite shows you put on for the nostalgia rush.
These animated films and TV shows can actually be incredibly smart, compelling, and witty. They have the flexibility of fantasy that “real” shows and movies don’t. And best of all, they allow for boundless imagination, without the cost of special effects.
Don’t feel infantile while watching cartoons, even if you’re above the age of 12. Put ‘em on the background when friends are over. Zone out when you need to unwind. Jump around from season to season for the best episode. Mostly, just have fun.
Here's the best TV and feature-length animation on Netflix for adults.
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1 of 10
Waking Life (2001)

Bet you didn't know that Richard Linklater, acclaimed director of Boyhood and Before Sunset, also directed an animated film starring Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy. In the movie, a man walks through an animated dreamscape and has deep conversations with a series of strangers. Floating through a landscape of possibility, he wonders: How much of life is a dream?
2 of 10
Bob's Burgers (2011-present)

Who'd think that a cartoon about a family and their dumpy burger joint on the Jersey Shore would be so wonderful? The Belcher family — and all their quirks and genuine affection — have become a part of our cultural conversation. By now, many of us can divide ourselves based on whether we're a Bob, Louise, or a Linda. If you haven't fallen in love with the Belchers yet, give Bob's Burgers an episode or two to work its magic.
3 of 10
The House Of Small Cubes (2008)

Just a warning: This Japanese short film is likely to make your heart feel like a splattered egg. In the film, an aging widower combats his town's gradual flooding by adding floors to his home with bricks. After he drops his favorite smoking pipe into the water-soaked lower levels, he sets forth on a journey to retrieve it, and subsequently relives memories from his storied past.
4 of 10
BoJack Horseman (2014-present)

In the '90s, BoJack was the lead of the beloved sitcom Horsin' Around. Two decades on, he's a middle-aged, washed-up, grump horse living in Hollywood. Part meditation on aging, part goofy and surreal trip, this Netflix Original is critically adored.
5 of 10
Cheatin' (2008)

As all the great love stories go, Jake and Ella meet at carnival bumper cars. They settle into marital bliss, until Ella develops a mean jealous streak that sends Jake flying. More compelling than the plot of marital discord, however, is cartoonist George Plympton's kaleidoscopic animations.
6 of 10
Futurama (1999-2013)

Fry, a New York pizza delivery boy, is cryogenically frozen following an accident in a lab. He wakes up 1,000 years in the future, in a 31st-century New New York populated by androids, aliens, and humans. Fry's sole descendant, a deranged mad scientist who owns a small cargo company, takes him in. Now, Fry works for the Planet Express delivery service along with some other lively employees, including a lobster-esque alien and a one-eyed captain.
7 of 10
Archer (2009-present)

Smooth, suave Sterling Archer may have the gadgets and personality necessary to be a Bond-esque spy, but he has a problem. For one, his mother is his boss. For another, he's a bit dense. Beware: This cartoon's pretty raunchy.
8 of 10
Wrinkles (2014)

When Emilio (Martin Sheen) moves into a nursing home, he finds a fast friend in the rebellious, hilarious, entertaining Miguel. In this sentimental, heart-warming, and heartbreaking movie, they'll do do anything to stave off going to the upper floor, where "lost causes" reside.
9 of 10
World Of Tomorrow (2015)

In this 16-minute film by the acclaimed animator Don Hertzfeldt, a little girl is taken on a tour of her future.
10 of 10
Family Guy (1999-present)

The Griffins are not your average family. For one, their dog can speak — and he's the most sensible member of the family. And for another, their infant child is constantly plotting world domination. Seth MacFarlane's long-running brainchild continues to deliver irreverent commentary on pop culture and current events, zany story lines for the Griffin family, and the best cutaways in cartoon history.

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