The Most Popular Kids’ Shows in America Aren’t What You Think They Are

Are kids watching what we think they are?

Do you know what the most popular TV show for kids in America? It might not be what you think it is, and many, many popular kids shows aren’t even brand new. Figuring out which shows are the most popular for kids right now don’t really have anything to do with what you’ve heard about the most. In fact, according to the data, the biggest kids shows might shock you.

Unlike previous decades, the popularity of a show isn’t measured by TV ratings. One data-gathering group, Parrot Analytics, measures the popularity of a given show in average demand expressions per capita. This means their algorithm takes into account viewership, as well as social media engagement, too. In other words, Parrot has taken a look at the clicks, as well as the buzz to figure out which shows are truly the biggest.

Collecting all that data allowed them to recently publish a list of America’s most popular kid shows from most to least. And, their results — as of this spring — might surprise you.  

1. Spongebob Squarepants

According to Parrot Analytics, the kids show most in demand right now is the near 20-year-old Nickelodeon cartoon Spongebob Squarepants. For the uninitiated, Spongebob Squarepants is about a sea sponge who works as a fry cook and whose unbridled enthusiasm for fun and joy turns his cynical neighbor Squidward’s life into a living hell.

You can watch Spongebob Squarepants on Amazon Prime here.

2. Star Wars Rebels

Set 14 years after Star Wars Episode III: Return of the Sith, Star Wars Rebels chronicles the years when the galactic empire’s stranglehold over the Star Wars universe was at its tightest and hope for the galaxy was at its lowest. The show’s 3D animation and character-driven storytelling is a welcomed addition to the saga set in a galaxy far, far away and has helped the franchise garner legions of new, younger fans.

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You can watch Star Wars Rebels on Amazon for 2.99 an episode or 19.99 a season here.

3. Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir

Two Parisian teenagers are gifted with powers by ancient creatures called Kwami, they don tights then fight crime under the names Ladybug and Cat Noir before falling in love without ever knowing each other’s real identities. The animation is fantastic, and anime fans will get a kick out of hearing some familiar voice actors.

You cat watch Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir on Netflix, here.

4. My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic

The pony Twilight Sparkle goes to Ponyville with her friends to learn more about the magic of friendship and the elements of Harmony and, in the process, create a fanbase of Bronies.

You can watch My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic on Netflix here.

5. Star vs the Forces of Evil

Star Butterfly is a warrior princess from another dimension sent to high school on Earth to, you know, learn important lessons about friendship and responsibility while also blowing stuff up and wearing a cool headband with devil horns on it.

You can watch Star Vs the Forces of Evil on Hulu here.

6. Gravity Falls

Two twins, Dipper and Mabel Pines, spend the summer at their uncle’s shop in Gravity Falls, Oregon and very little time need to pass before they realize there are all kinds of supernatural shenanigans afoot.

You can watch Gravity Falls on Hulu here.

7. PAW Patrol

PAW Patrol is, well, it’s a show about a team of rescue dogs which, as it would have it, are called the PAW Patrol. They lend a hand throughout their town dealing with emergencies with the help of their human friend, Ryder who, as far we can tell, has no friends or family.

You can watch the latest episodes of PAW Patrol on Nick Jr’s website, here.

8. Pokémon

Despite being one of the oldest shows on this list, Parrot Analytics has Pokémon as the 8th most popular kids’ show. The show is set in a society where people live alongside superpowered creatures called pokémon. Though each different kind of pokémon has their own set of powers, they all also share the ability to say their own names over and over again.

You can watch the first season of Pokémon on Netflix here (the streaming service offers other pokémon titles as well).

9. The Amazing World of Gumball

The 9th most popular show is The Amazing World of Gumball, a Cartoon Network show about a 12-year-old cat who goes on adventures with his pet goldfish in the suburb of Elmore. As you’d expect from a Cartoon Network cartoon, the show is brimming with creativity and goofiness. Not to mention gorgeous art that mixes cartoons with realistic backdrops.

You can watch The Amazing World of Gumball on Hulu here.

10. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012)

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere. Based on the TV show from the 80s and 90s, which in turn was based on a comic book, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is the newest rendition of turtle warriors Raphael, Michelangelo, Donatello, and Leonardo. Expect lots of ass kicking and, of course, tons of pizza.

You can watch Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on Hulu here.