These Cartoon Conspiracy Theories Will Ruin Your Childhood

Wait, the Rugrats babies never existed?

If you’re a late ’80s/early ’90s baby, then you’re probably familiar with the golden age of cartoons; the Rugrats, Hey Arnold!, and Scooby Doo weren’t just TV shows, but ways of life. But of course Internet trolls have to crap all over our childhoods and publish conspiracy theories that suggest our favorite cartoons weren’t as innocent as we thought. If you’re mentally prepared, check out these nine theories that will change the way you view Tommy Pickles and Garfield forever. (Disclaimer: These are just theories, and we’re sure the Rugrats kids are doing just fine for themselves.

  • 1 Scooby Doo takes place during an economic depression.
    Warner Bros.
    One Reddit user theorizes that the original Scooby Doo series takes place during a 1930’s-esque great depression, and the villains the Mystery Gang catches were once esteemed people like professors and celebrities down on their luck. [/item
  • 2 Garfield is dying of starvation.
    20th Century Fox
    User lusciouslou’s interpretation of the beloved food-loving cat will make you cry. According to the Reddit member, Garfield is actually slowly dying of starvation and, as a byproduct, is imagining delusions about his “family” members Jon and Odie. [/item
  • 3 Every character in Ed, Edd, and Eddy is dead and living in purgatory.
    Cartoon Network
    destroyer47949’s theory about the children on this popular Cartoon Network series is pretty out there. (But it has merit.) Apparently, every child on Ed, Edd, and Eddy is dead, and the cul-de-sac they live in is purgatory. Furthermore, all the kids come from different time periods. Eerie. [/item
  • 4 Angelica is only imagining the babies in Rugrats, because they never existed.
    Creepypasta details a Rugrats conspiracy theory so sinister that you’ll never be the same. (Fair warning.) According to the Wiki, bossy and pigtailed Angelica imagined all of the Nickelodeon babies because she was lonely and had a neglectful, workaholic mother. Tommy was stillborn; Chuckie died in a car cash; and the DeVilles had an abortion. [/item
  • 5 Doug was sexually assaulted by his neighbor Mr. Dink and started taking LSD to cope. (From the Nickelodeon show Doug.)
    The Internet is a screwed up place. According to this Creepypasta theory, Doug was molested by his childless neighbor Mr. Drink and starting abusing LSD as a blocking mechanism. [/item
  • 6 Helga is the star of Hey Arnold, not Arnold.
    This makes complete sense. A Thought Catalog writer asserts that we know more about Helga — her sucky parents, showboating sister, etc. — than Arnold. Helga is also the only character who delivers long monologues, and her obsession with Arnold is one of the show’s focal points. Plus, the show’s title only exists because Helga yells it out loud. [/item
  • 7 Each SpongeBob SquarePants character represents one of the seven deadly sins.
    Another hypothesis that totally works once you think about it. A ThoughtCatalog writer asserted that Patrick is sloth; Squidward is wrath; Mr. Krabs is greed; Plankton is envy (he’s green, too!); Gary is gluttony; Sandy is pride (TEXAS); and SpongeBob is lust. [/item
  • 8 Aladdin is set in the future.
    Despite what you may have thought growing up, claims Aladdin is set far into a post-apocalyptic future. And there are hints sprinkled in the movie that support this, if you look closely. First, the genie says he was locked in his lamp for 10,000 years. Plus, the genie tells Aladdin his clothes are “so third century,” which would have to set the film in 10,300 at least. [/item
  • 9 The Magic School Bus kids grew up to become the characters on Captain Planet.
    They do look oddly similar, after all. [/item