Home Diverse Media Notes How long does it take to binge-watch various long-running cartoons?

How long does it take to binge-watch various long-running cartoons?

Simpsons toys

Updated on October 28, 2022

Binge-watching TV shows has become a popular viewing trend, thanks to Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming video services. That said, “catching up on” a long-running show sounds very time-consuming, especially if one’s trying to watch a show from the very first episode.

Which led me to wonder how long it’d take to binge-watch some popular long-running cartoons. Below are my criteria:

  • For shows with several spin-offs/successors set in the same universe, I’ve included the original series plus follow-up shows as appropriate.
  • I’m not including one-shot specials, shorts, movies, or TV-movies. Given the sheer number of such for “Scooby-Doo,” the DC Animated Universe, etc., that’d make things even more complicated.
  • Viewing times are without commercials (as seen on DVD/streaming video), and assuming a half-hour TV show’s 22 minutes without the ads.
  • I give three estimates below: four hours a day; eight hours a day; and a whopping 16 hours a day (which assumes literally nothing else is done in a day besides sleeping).
  • Episode counts are those that have aired as of this writing (10/28/22); information is taken from Wikipedia.

Arthur

  • Number of episodes: 253
  • Total view time: 3.9 days
  • 4 hours/day: 23.2 days
  • 8 hours/day: 11.6 days
  • 16 hours/day: 5.8 days

The DC Animated Universe (DCAU)

DCAU Batman and Superman
From “The New Batman/Superman Adventures.” (Warner Bros.)

Shows that make up the DC Animated Universe (DCAU):

  • “Batman: The Animated Series” (85 episodes)
  • “Superman: The Animated Series” (54 episodes)
  • “The New Batman Adventures” (24 episodes)
  • “Batman Beyond” (52 episodes)
  • “Static Shock” (52 episodes)
  • “The Zeta Project” (26 episodes)
  • “Justice League” (52 episodes)
  • “Justice League Unlimited” (39 episodes)

Adding all of the above together gives the following:

  • Number of episodes (total): 384
  • Total view time: 5.9 days
  • 4 hours/day: 35.2 days
  • 8 hours/day: 17.6 days
  • 16 hours/day: 8.8 days

Family Guy

  • Number of episodes: 394
  • Total view time: 6.0 days
  • 4 hours/day: 36.1 days
  • 8 hours/day: 18.1 days
  • 16 hours/day: 9.0 days

The Flintstones

The Flintstones
“The Flintstones.” (Warner Bros.)

Listing all of the various “Flintstones” spin-off TV series:

  • “The Flintstones” (166 episodes)
  • “The Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show” (16 episodes)
  • “The Flintstone Comedy Hour” (18 episodes, edited down to the half-hour “Flintstone Comedy Show” for syndication)
  • “The New Fred and Barney Show” (17 episodes)
  • “The Flintstone Comedy Show” (aka “Flintstone Frolics”) (18 episodes; originally 60-90 minutes with filler segments)
  • “The Flintstone Kids” (34 episodes)
  • “Cave Kids” (8 episodes)
  • “Yabba Dabba Dinosaurs” (26 episodes)

Adding the above together (and assuming “The Flintstone Comedy Hour” and “The Flintstone Comedy Show” are hour-long episodes) gives the following:

  • Number of episodes: 303
  • Total view time: 5.2 days
  • 4 hours/day: 31.1 days
  • 8 hours/day: 15.5 days
  • 16 hours/day: 7.8 days

Futurama

  • Number of episodes: 140
  • Total view time: 2.1 days
  • 4 hours/day: 12.8 days
  • 8 hours/day: 6.4 days
  • 16 hours/day: 3.2 days

King of the Hill

  • Number of episodes: 259
  • Total view time: 4.0 days
  • 4 hours/day: 23.8 days
  • 8 hours/day: 11.9 days
  • 16 hours/day: 5.9 days

Scooby-Doo

Scooby-Doo Where Are You #64
“Scooby-Doo, Where Are You?” #64 (February 2016). Art by Dave Alvarez. (DC Comics)

The various spin-offs include:

  • “Scooby-Doo Where Are You?” (25 episodes, excluding ones from the 1978 revival, syndicated as part of “The Scooby-Doo Show”)
  • “The New Scooby-Doo Movies” (24 hour-long episodes)
  • “The Scooby-Doo Show” (40 episodes)
  • “Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo” (first season) (16 episodes)
  • “Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo” (remaining seasons) (33 episodes)
  • “The New Scooby and Scrappy-Doo Show”/”The New Scooby-Doo Mysteries” (26 episodes)
  • “The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo” (13 episodes)
  • “A Pup Named Scooby-Doo” (27 episodes)
  • “What’s New Scooby-Doo” (42 episodes)
  • “Shaggy & Scooby-Doo Get a Clue” (26 episodes)
  • “Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated” (52 episodes)
  • “Be Cool, Scooby-Doo!” (52 episodes)
  • “Scooby-Doo and Guess Who?” (52 episodes)

Adding the above together:

  • Number of episodes: 428 episodes
  • Total view time: 6.9 days
  • 4 hours/day: 41.4 days
  • 8 hours/day: 20.7 days
  • 16 hours/day: 10.4 days

The Simpsons

  • Number of episodes: 733
  • Total view time: 11.2 days
  • 4 hours/day: 67.2 days
  • 8 hours/day: 33.6 days
  • 16 hours/day: 16.8 days

South Park

  • Number of episodes: 319, including a half-dozen specials/movies (from seasons 24 and 25)
  • Total view time: 5.0 days
  • 4 hours/day: 30.0 days
  • 8 hours/day: 15.0 days
  • 16 hours/day: 7.5 days

SpongeBob SquarePants

The various “SpongeBob” series:

Adding up all the above:

  • Number of episodes: 316
  • Total view time: 4.8 days
  • 4 hours/day: 29.0 days
  • 8 hours/day: 14.5 days
  • 16 hours/day: 7.2 days

Conclusion

As the above shows, many popular cartoons are very long-running ones. Watching their entire runs would take a large amount of time to watch, even if binge-viewing.

By far, “The Simpsons” takes up the most time out of all of these shows. Even if one did literally nothing else but sleep, it’d still take two and a half weeks to watch every episode. And yet, that’s still not enough episodes for Fox, as the show’s continuously renewed, despite being on nonstop longer than some of its audience has been alive. Again, quantity doesn’t equal quality… unless you’re Fox, apparently.

Image by Stefan Grage from Pixabay

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