For a lot of us, our childhood was made up of cartoons. We spent many Saturday mornings and weekdays after school watching those shows that featured everything from superheroes to monsters. Whether you grew up watching ThunderCats, or got into cartoons like Avatar: The Last Airbender, there’s a good chance animation made up a big part of your childhood.
My childhood cartoons were shows like Digimon, TMNT, Animaniacs, and W.I.T.C.H. I loved the adventures the characters all had in these shows, and I was always up for a good laugh. These shows were interesting, hilarious, and packed with interesting stories. And that’s all I was really looking for: a good story. And with these cartoons, I got something that inspired my love of animation and cartoons to this day.
Many fans have also liked to show their appreciation for their childhood cartoons by cosplaying as different characters, which is awesome! But there are some characters from these shows that would be incredibly difficult, if not impossible, to cosplay. Between weird body proportions, complicated outfits, and unusual skin colors, cosplaying these guys would be no easy feat.
But these cosplayers are up to the challenge. So here are 25 childhood cartoon characters that would be seriously hard to cosplay, and the cosplayers who managed to pull them off. So, let’s have some fun with cosplay and enjoy the results of these seriously talented cosplayers!
Think we missed some great characters or some great cosplays? Make sure to let us know in the comments section below!
25 ThunderCats Ho!
The ThunderCats were a pretty awesome group and any kid growing up in the 80s remembers this iconic cartoon. (And you could never forget the cry “ThunderCats Ho!”)
It would be tricky to cosplay as any of the ThunderCats since they’re humanoid cats. While their outfits are relatively simple, you’re still dealing with fur and some pretty unique features like longer ears, claws, etc. And these cosplayers did a fantastic job with their cosplays. I love how they tackled all the hair styles, and everyone looks really good!
24 This Hero Is Out Of This World
The fact that Martian Manhunter hasn’t appeared in a major superhero movie yet is a crime in my opinion. But he did get some great screen time in the Justice League cartoons, and we’re all glad of that.
Cosplaying Martian Manhunter would be pretty hard since he has green skin and a rather alien head shape (and no hair). And there’s his eyes. So, it’s impressive that this cosplayer has pulled off an amazing cosplay of this Martian superhero. That’s a job well done!
23 Bikini Bottom Won’t Know What Hit Them
I don’t know if anybody expected SpongeBob SquarePants to get as popular as it did. Who would’ve thought people would like a story about a sponge that lives in the bottom of the ocean? But since the show started, it’s become this big thing.
SpongeBob is a surprisingly popular guy.
Cosplaying SpongeBob would be tricky since he’s just a yellow sponge. And doing a human version could be hard to make him recognizable. But this cosplayer has done a pretty impressive human version of SpongeBob. The freckles are a nice touch, and I like the hat!
22 Don’t Let Her Take You Away
Courage the Cowardly Dog has a pretty wide variety of creepy villains, but one that’s pretty memorable is the Black Puddle Queen. The fact that this lady can appear from any type of water and use it to take her victims to her undersea palace is pretty creepy.
This lady would be a pain to cosplay mostly because of her pale blue skin and red eyes. Plus, you have to make her look attractive at the same time. But this cosplayer did an amazing job and has pulled off a very convincing and beautiful cosplay of the Black Puddle Queen.
21 Sharks On Land?
I think a lot of people forgot about Street Sharks, which is surprising since the premise is pretty memorable. The whole plot revolves around these guys that have been mutated into humanoid sharks. While the show was kind of ridiculous, it was still entertaining.
But cosplaying any of the characters from Street Sharks would be incredibly difficult. They’ve got such a stylistic design that would be really hard to recreate. And that’s why these cosplayers are so awesome for pulling off a crazy cosplay. Well done, guys!
20 Cyborg And The Machine
Cyborg is a pretty awesome superhero. He’s part machine and crazy smart, but he’s still a pretty relatable guy. He was always so awesome in the Teen Titans series and his look is so cool!
You can't help but love Cyborg.
But it’s that famous look that makes cosplaying him a hard feat. Cosplaying a machine is hard enough, but cosplaying a cyborg is seriously tricky. You’re trying to make machine parts blend in with the human parts and make it look good. But this lady did a fantastic female Cyborg and she deserves all the praise!
19 Awaken The Beast Within
Beast is kind of a walking contradiction. He looks like this massive, savage creature but he’s incredibly intelligent and calm. In fact, in the X-Men cartoon, we didn’t see him fight nearly as much as the other X-Men.
Beast is a cosplayer’s nightmare. Between the blue fur, the huge build, and the claws, making a good cosplay of this guy seems impossible. But this cosplayer did a really cool job with the cosplay, tapping into Beast’s more animal side. She definitely looks pretty intimidating.
18 Gotta Go Faster!
Sonic the Hedgehog not only has his own series of games, but he’s had a few of his own cartoons as well. So, whether you grew up playing the games or watching the cartoons, this guy’s probably been in your childhood.
Sonic would not be an easy guy to cosplay since he’s got some stylistic blue spikes and he’s a hedgehog. But this cosplayer pulled off a pretty impressive Sonic cosplay. She got a lot of great details down from the blue spikes to the ears to the rings. Looking great!
17 Don’t Run Into Him On A Dark Night
I still think it’s criminal that Gargoyles didn’t get the praise and attention it deserved. It’s a case where Disney went a little darker, but I think it works really well with this series. One of the main characters, Goliath, is a pretty interesting guy.
Goliath is both intriguing and spooky.
But cosplaying him would be a huge pain. He’s a big guy to start out, and you’ve also got to make yourself look like you’re made of stone. But this cosplayer did an awesome job, cosplaying our favorite gargoyle. He looks amazing and spooky!
16 Heroes In A Half Shell
You can’t get much more classic cartoon than Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. How this series got popular despite its crazy premise is beyond me. But the franchise is still going strong today with new comics, new shows, and new games. And at the center of it are these four mutant brothers.
While the turtles may be humanoid, cosplaying them would still be seriously difficult. You’re dealing with green skin, turtle shells, bald heads, and ninja gear. And this group of cosplayers managed to pull off a great cosplay! I’m really impressed with the detail.
15 He’s Off To Fight Decepticons
The idea of giant robots that can turn into regular cars is definitely a strange one, but that hasn’t stopped the Transformers franchise from having fun with it. And it all started with a toy line and a cartoon series. And when you think of Transformers, Optimus Prime is probably the first name that comes to your mind.
But cosplaying a robot can be a huge pain. And that’s why this cosplay of Optimus Prime is so impressive. They got every detail down perfectly and they look amazing!
14 One Is A Genius, The Other’s Insane
Who doesn’t love Pinky and the Brain? Their interactions with each other and with other people were always hilarious, and Brain’s increasingly ridiculous attempts to take over the world only got funnier. They were crazy and entertaining.
Pinky and the Brain are a classic comedy duo.
You’d think cosplaying these two would be simple, but these lab mice have some pretty distinct features that can be hard to recreate. But these two cosplayers managed to make a fun human version of these two crazy mice.
13 Form Voltron!
Right now, Voltron: Legendary Defender is very popular, but before the Netflix series, Voltron was a popular cartoon in the 80s and had a lot of fans. After all, it’s a giant robot fighting enemies in space; what more could you want?
But trying to cosplay that giant robot would give you a major headache. There’s a lot of intricate parts and details you’ve got to get just right. But this cosplayer looks fantastic as Voltron. I’m impressed with the amount of detail that went into this cosplay. I wonder if they have a hard time walking around?
12 Another Robot?
Gobots was an interesting series that tried to capitalize on the whole robot toy craze that was happening. While it may not have been the most original cartoon, the robots all had a pretty distinct and interesting designs.
The Gobots did have a rather unique look.
But that makes them pretty hard to cosplay. Cosplaying robots in general can be a huge pain, so it’s not surprising that we don’t see many people cosplaying these robots. But this cosplayer did an awesome job as a Gobot. I wonder how he moves in that?
11 Straight Out Of Springville
I think The Simpsons defined a lot of people’s childhoods. It’s been around for literally decades and it looks like it’s not stopping anytime soon. Even if you’ve never seen The Simpsons, you’d likely recognize the characters and the show’s distinct look.
But cosplaying these characters would be pretty difficult. You’d have to recreate the yellow skin, the stylistic hair, and the body proportions. But these cosplayers look pretty fantastic as Marge and her sisters. I like how their skin is the perfect shade of yellow, and their hair all looks great!
10 An Earthworm In Space?
Earthworm Jim got his start as a video game series, but he eventually got his own cartoon series too, and it did pretty well! If you wanted something with a more science fiction flair, this series was a good way to go.
Cosplaying Earthworm Jim would have its challenges, especially since you’d be basically cosplaying an earthworm in a space suit. There’s a lot of weird body proportions you’d have to work with. But this cosplayer managed to pull of a pretty impressive Earthworm Jim cosplay. They even got the head down right.
9 These Beavers Look Fabulous
Angry Beavers is one of those shows that’s known for being a bit bizarre, and at the center of it were the two beaver brothers Norbert and Daggett. But despite its weirdness, this show was pretty popular.
Cosplaying a couple of beavers wouldn't be easy.
Cosplaying Norbert and Dagget would be pretty tough since they’re, well, beavers. And doing a human version would be tricky. But these two cosplayers have done a seriously awesome cosplay of these two beaver brothers! You can totally tell who they’re cosplaying, which is not easy to do.
8 Let’s Get Dangerous!
Who doesn’t love this feathered, ego-centric superhero? Darkwing Duck is one of those guys who could come across as rather arrogant and annoying, but is still surprisingly likable. (The fact that he’s trying to be a good dad to his adopted daughter probably helps with that.)
But cosplaying Darkwing Duck could get tricky. Doing an anthropomorphized animal is always tricky since you’re often dealing with different skin colors as well as fur or feathers. And that’s what makes this cosplay so impressive. Get ready for lady Darkwing Duck!
7 She’s Beautiful And Strange
Ahhh! Real Monsters was a just plain strange cartoon. You had all these crazy monsters with even crazier designs that are just living their monster lives. And Oblina is a pretty interesting character.
Cosplaying Oblina has some unique challenges since her body shape is different. And there’s her eyes. This lady’s look is not an easy one to recreate. But this cosplayer accepted the challenge and pulled off a seriously impressive cosplay of this lady monster. And they look absolutely fantastic! Well done!
6 Tame The Animal In Me
Out of all the Teen Titans, Beast Boy was probably the wackiest. This guy had one crazy imagination, and it seemed like he never took anything seriously. But when things got tough, Beast Boy was the one who stepped up to help his teammates.
Beast Boy is definitely a popular character among fans.
Beast Boy presents a few challenges for cosplayers. His green skin and hair, combined with his fangs and claws, make cosplaying him a bit tricky. And don’t forget those ears. But this cosplayer decided to give it a shot, and he passed with flying colors! Seriously, this guy looks so good as Beast Boy!
5 Does He Talk Like Squidward?
Squidward is the epitome of every disgruntled employee who hates his job but does it because he’s got those bills to pay. This cynical octopus is a great contrast to the ever-optimistic SpongeBob, and it’s always entertaining to get his take on things.
Cosplaying a humanoid octopus would be pretty hard, and Squidward’s unique color can make things extra tricky. But this cosplayer decided to cosplay as this tricky character anyways, and I say he looks pretty awesome!
4 Can They Transform Into A Car?
Transformers had a few interesting characters. Probably the transformer that’s as iconic as Optimus Prime is Bumblebee. While Optimus is known for being the hero type, Bumblebee is just likable. He’s the sweet guy that you want to protect.
Like any robot, Bumblebee would be seriously difficult to cosplay. You’ve got all the intricate parts, and there’s the distinct yellow color you have to work with too. And this cosplayer was up to the challenge and created a pretty awesome Bumblebee cosplay. That’s a job well done!
3 This Guy’s Look Is Just Strange
Krumm is an interesting character in both design and personality. His design is very striking and memorable, if a little impractical. (Seriously, how does he do anything if he has to hold his eyes in his hand all the time?)
How does this monster function?
And that’s what would make cosplaying this guy so difficult. You’ve got some strange proportions and body parts in areas where they shouldn’t be. But that didn’t stop this cosplayer, and they made a pretty impressive cosplay of this wacky monster. Though I wonder how they walked around in that?
2 The Reaper Never Looked So Good
A lot of people can agree that Grim from The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy is a pretty entertaining character. This version of the grim reaper is a pretty snarky guy, making him a fun character to watch.
Cosplaying Grim can have its own challenges. While his outfit isn’t that complicated, the fact that he’s a skeleton with unique facial features makes cosplaying him pretty tricky. But this cosplayer managed to do a pretty awesome Grim cosplay! I wonder if they talked like him too?
1 Can He Fly Too?
I think we can all agree that Avatar: The Last Airbender is the best series to come out of the 2000s. And a fan favorite character was the sky bison Appa. This guy was just so lovable and cute, but also strong and intimidating. We loved him and we rooted for him when he was separated from Aang.
It would be insanely difficult to cosplay a flying sky bison. So, this cosplayer decided to go the human version route, and it’s a pretty awesome cosplay! It’s a very unique look at Appa, but I think the design works well.