The Cartoon Illuminati By Adam Withers

As I was bouncing around StumbleUpon this afternoon I chanced upon this wonderful and humorous illustration by Adam Withers over on deviantART depicting “a collection of the greatest geniuses in the history of cartoons, all brought together to decide the fate of the world in secret!”

“The Cast (Clockwise from top center): Daria Morgendorffer (Daria), Susan and Mary Test (Johnny Test), Velma Dinkley (Scooby Doo), Dexter (Dexter’s Laboratory), Edd (Ed, Edd, n’ Eddy), Nigel Uno (Codename: Kids Next Door), and Jimmy Neutron.”

Cartoon Network? You kind of have to make this a television show now…because I want to watch it!

Fan of Scooby-Doo? Why not check out the Retroist Scooby-Doo podcast…


Editor at Retroist
Searching through the alleys for useful knowledge in the city of Nostalgia. Huge cinema fanatic and sometimes carrier of the flame for the weirding ways of 80s gaming, toys, and television. When his wife lets him he is quite happy sitting in the corner eating buckets of beef jerky.

Never Miss an Episode

Stay up-to-date on the latest from the Retroist Podcast. Sign up and receive email notifications when there's a new episode of the Retroist Podcast or when we launch new podcasts.
* indicates required

65 thoughts on “The Cartoon Illuminati By Adam Withers

  1. McK says:

    Like the art, not a big fan of the choices. I had never heard of “Johnny Test” in my life. I’ve only heard the name “Codename: Kids Next Door.” All I know of “Ed, Edd, n’ Eddy” is that I was too annoyed by it to watch more than 5 minutes.

    I’d prefer some more “classic” choices that people over 15 years old might know.

    Donatello? Gyro from Duck Tales? The Brain of Pinky & The Brain? Brainy Smurf? Simon of the Chipmunks? Gadget of the Rescue Rangers? Penny and Brain of Inspector Gadget?

  2. Alexandra says:

    Ah, but to be fair to the new generation, McK, this group of characters has been chosen to appeal to younger eyes already very familiar with the Cartoon Network of today. What would be interesting if a group like yours competed with the group this artist rendered…I would watch that.

  3. Alexandra says:

    However, I agree with you. Classics of all kinds are undervalued in this society, no matter if it’s Pinky and the Brain (repetitive yet somehow with a comedic soothing touch) or if it’s Don Quixote (got to love a novel with a delusional hero and a donkey, right?). But few people pay attention to “the old dead guys” now, sadly. I think I heard Saint-Saens crying.

  4. Of course there are good choices that were not included here. And yet I think he or she was going for human geniuses (unlike the animal characters mentioned before), as well as characters who were modern. Though, yes I do agree, some very valid choices were left out.

  5. Jeron says:

    I like the choices made…if this cartoon would ever take place whether it be a comic book or full anime…it would be very interesting to see the development of the characters. True I am not familiar with all of the characters but…I know a lot of them. Who to say that the other unmentioned characters won’t make appearances or become a rival group. The artist took a very innovative role in changing the age appearance to make the characters look like they could work together. Imagine…Velma actually working with a group of people where she might actually can be able to spark a love!

  6. John McK says:

    Never heard of Susan and Mary Test, But was Johnny not quite clever himself? Also as far as I know he turned to Raj quite a bit when in trouble.

  7. Pippe21 says:

    I think that this is a good selection of characters. It seems that the selection was mainly based off of characters from popular CN shows, with an exception or two.

  8. Brittany says:

    I love this! In the comments I saw where someone said that only people 15 and under would recognize these characters. WRONG. I’m 20 and I watched every single one of these shows. Hell, Dexter’s Laboratory hasn’t been on the air for a very long time. And Daria? She’s from the 90’s.

    Also, great job on Jimmy Neutron. I always knew he’d grow up to be a cutie.

  9. Gabi A says:

    I Think this is pretty legit, :DD Maybe us 17 year olds find it alot more interesting and appreciative of the characters, Nice job though (:

  10. Nah, Friends. I don’t think it is just “young people” who enjoy the idea of the Cartoon Illuminati, you just have to enjoy nice art. :)

  11. Jake says:

    I really like this, I dislike the Johnny Test show but it seems the author wanted a mix of brand new to slightly old characters (meaning back to the 90’s). I didn’t care for Jimmy Neutron but I think I’d like him in this show, as long as he isn’t so arrogant like he was as kid (most likely still is). Double D is definitely my favorite, he looks like a delinquent which gives the sense that hanging out with the other Ed’s finally caught up with his morality. If this was a show my favorite episode would be when the other Ed’s followed Double D to the secret base, hid somewhere and then caused disasters when the Illuminati group wasn’t around.

  12. aa says:

    I imagine that Jimmy Neutron, Dexter and the Test girls would be in a constant battle over who had the better secret lab.

  13. Mike says:

    Why is Daria in the pic? She wasn’t intellectual or inventive. She just complained a lot and assumed everyone around her was stupid.

    I guess the artist was just desperate to round out the girl to guy ratio a bit.

  14. I like the list of characters. We have old school Velma, boy geniuses Jimmy Neutron (his head should be bigger IMO) and Dexter from the 90s, wiseass Daria from Beavis and Butthead (as well as her own show) fame, Double D from the late 90s, and the Test twins from the late 2000s.

    I am twenty-four years old, and I’ve seen all these cartoons. I like the idea of all the other smarty characters but I think this guy was going more for current cartoons. I thought he tried to please the oolder masses by bringing in older characters: Velma, Daria, and Dexter (Dexter came on in the mid-90s) and they’re still pretty rememberable to most people today. Then again, these may be the characters the guy enjoyed the most!

    Finally, someone mentioned Johnny and Raj. This isn’t Johnny Quest. It’s Johnny Test, which is a completely different show. I’d explain it, but it’s not worth it.

  15. Stefano says:

    I think you nailed what Dexter would look like. IMO, Gretchen Grundler or even TJ Detweiler from Recess would’ve been good additions. Like the picture though!

  16. Hey friends, it is like I’ve said…we are proof that this show could work, we just need to get Cartoon Network to see the light. Ha, ha. :)

  17. Guest says:

    Most of these cartoons are pretty old. KND started a decade ago and that was a decent show…Also, Jimmy neutron is a nick show so this love fest will, sadly, never happen.

  18. David says:

    this seems like a decent show.. the idiot that bashed the show then suggested all animals should realize that they’re trying to make this a realistic show.. surely animals wouldn’t decide the fate of the world – they had the smart people from all recent cartoons. also i’d like to point out that i’m over 15 and have heard of all but the girl off the first show listed. If you feel the need to respond just know that I won’t read it so you’ll just look like an idiot. thank you and have a nice day

  19. Joi says:

    I love the artwork, but honestly even though I’d love to see some older cartoon characters up here…I would much rather leave the fate of the world in the hands of humans rather than a sociopathic lab rat and his compatriots.

  20. me, myself, and I says:

    I love this, as a conspiracy freak. It makes sense to use this crowd. And, as some of you said, there are quite a few others who would make this team come together.

  21. Ema says:

    …That is totally amazing. I knew all of the characters without reading the caption. I love this picture so much.

  22. Brady says:

    You guys, the point of this was to have the characters relate to all age groups. The only reason I even know who Daria is is because of the internet, and I’ve only seen like, 4 episodes of dexter’s lab. But to judge me on what TV shows I had when I was little is bullsh*t. Like, really. Just because I’m more familiar with Jimmy Neutron and Numbah One doesn’t make this a bad thing. It was supposed to have generations in cartoons. It was supposed to have familiar characters. And for you to ask for all classic characters is just as unfair as me to ask for all newer characters.

  23. Drahken says:

    I recognized all except neutron (just way too different from the normal version. It looks more like that generator rex guy) and numbuh 1.
    I always liked daria (both the cartoon & the character).

  24. Drahken says:

    Also, in regards to neutron being a nick show; Daria was an MTV show, which is a viacom network, right alongside nick. As such, daria couldn’t be in the show either (although she & neutron could be in one together).

  25. AR says:

    @McK I am only 15 and I have heard of everyone you mentioned, they were all on when I was younger and I loved them and thought they were awesome shows, and I do miss them, but you don’t have to complain that you don’t know some of these people

  26. ana says:

    uhh where’s Blossom from the Power Puff Girls??? hahaha love the Illuminati concept. also Jimmy Neutron is FINE

  27. For thos e of you saying tha tthis couldn’t happen because Jimmy Neutron is a Nick show…he looks different enough, all they’d have to do is never give away his last name lol.

  28. Ryan says:

    I think that there could also be Mandy (grim adventures of billy and mandy), AJ (Fairly Oddparents), and I also think that Kim Possible was pretty smart (even though she had a nerd backing her up).

  29. this would be a good show but you would have to have characters from one network like cartoon network. nick ect… you could have more than one team like the brains and the muscle going at it and you could also make up characters after all thats how all good shows started

  30. anika engelbert says:

    i never heard about illuminati. but the drawings are way cool!!!! i wish i could draw that good! :-)

  31. Sal says:

    Daria was awesome but a genius? I must’ve missed the episode establishing that.

    Needs some Princess Bubblegum.

  32. RobAlister says:

    Some people just don’t get the point. Why in the world would Johnny Bravo be a part of this team? He’s the opposite of smart. Also I’m pretty sure this is a parody of the Marvel Illuminati not the Illuminati made up by conspiracy theorist. There is also the original Illuminati who I’m pretty sure were enlightened people and not some front for the new world order.

    Now onto what I think of the art. I think it’s amazing but I question Daria and Numbuh 1 being there. Daria was smart but is she Susan and Mary Test smart? Or even Velma Dinkley smart? And Numbuh 1 wasn’t exactly known for his smarts. He was a good leader and had good ideas but Numbuhs 5 and 2 were smarter than him when you think about it. But it’s your art so you can have whoever you want in it.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.