For information on the 2020-present reboot, see Animaniacs (2020 TV series)
For other uses of the term Animaniacs; click here
Animaniacs is an American animated sitcom and sketch comedy series produced by Amblin Entertainment and Warner Bros. Animation. The show was the second animated series produced by the collaboration of Warner Bros. Animation and Steven Spielberg during the Animation Renaissance of the early 1990s. The show aired from originally aired from 1993 until 1999, lasting 5 seasons and a total of 99 episodes.
The studio's first series, Tiny Toon Adventures, was a success among younger viewers, and attracted a sizable number of adult viewers. The Animaniacs writers and animators, led by senior producer, Tom Ruegger, took what they learned from the success of Tiny Toons to create new animated characters that were cast in the mold of Looney Tunes shorts from Chuck Jones, and Tex Avery.
The comedy of Animaniacs was a broad mix of old-fashioned wit, slapstick, pop culture references, cartoon violence, and wackiness. The show featured a number of comedic educational segments that covered subjects such as history, mathematics, geography, astronomy science, and social studies, often in musical form. Animaniacs itself was a variety show, with short skits featuring a large cast of characters. While the show had no set format, episode structure varied to suit the needs of the segments included; the majority of episodes were composed of three short mini-episodes, each starring a different set of characters, and bridging segments, especially particularly Pinky and the Brain, The Goodfeathers, and Slappy Squirrel, and not just the Warner Trio.
Animaniacs aired on Fox Kids from 1993 to 1995 and on Kids' WB! from the years 1995 to 2000, with the show eventually being broadcasted on their sister networks, FOX and The WB respectively. It was also aired on five other channels: Nickelodeon, Nicktoons Network, Cartoon Network, Boomerang (internationally), and the Hub Network (now known as Discovery Family). Currently, the series is available in its entirety on DVD, various digital outlets, and Hulu. Throughout its original run, Animaniacs has received several promotional products such as video games, merchandise, a theatrical short, special tie-ins, and a feature length direct-to-video movie. It also spawned a spin-off focusing on the Pinky and the Brain characters in 1995, which was later retooled in 1998 to incorporate Elmyra Duff from Animaniacs' predecessor, Tiny Toons, much to the outrage of fans and the staff. The finales of both Animaniacs and Pinky and the Brain aired together on November 14, 1998 in a special hour-long broadcast: The Ultimate Animaniacs Super Special.
In 2018, a reboot of the series was announced and debuted on Hulu in 2020, with most of the cast from the original show reprising their roles.
The Warner bros., Yakko and Wakko, and the Warner sister, Dot—three inseparable, irascible siblings—have a great time wreaking havoc and mayhem in the lives of everyone they meet. Considered too much of a handful, studio executives locked the siblings away in the Warner Bros. water tower, but they have found a way to escape! Causing chaos and comic confusion, Yakko, Wakko and Dot run loose in the city, turning the world into their very own personal playground in this mix of cartoon shorts, musical numbers, and comedy blackouts. They are joined by a cavalcade of crazy characters including Pinky and The Brain, Slappy Squirrel and Skippy Squirrel, the Hip Hippos, and many others. 
- Tokyo Movie Shinsha Co., Ltd.
- Wang Film Productions Co., Ltd.
- StarToons International, LLC.
- Akom Film Production
- Freelance Animators Co., Ltd.
- Varga Animation Studio
- Koko Enterprises
- Philippine Animation Studio Inc.
The Warner siblings and the other characters live in Burbank, California. However, characters from the series have episodes in various places and periods of time. The characters interact with famous persons and creators of the past and present as well as mythological characters and characters from modern television. Andrea Romano, the voice director and caster for the show, stated that the Warner siblings functioned to "tie the show together," by appearing in and introducing other characters' segments. Each Animaniacs episode usually consisted of two or three cartoon shorts, though some episodes had more. Animaniacs segments ranged in time, from bridging segments less than a minute long to episodes spanning the entire show length; writer Peter Hastings said that the varying episode lengths gave the show a "sketch comedy" atmosphere. The Warners currently reside, having been locked up, in the Warner Bros. trademark water tower.
- Slappy Squirrel
- Skippy Squirrel
- List of Animaniacs Episodes
- The series aired on September 13, 1993 and ended on November 14, 1998. Animaniacs had a total of 99 episodes and a direct-to-video-movie, Wakko's Wish. There even was a "crossover" with their spin-off show Pinky and the Brain, that was a Star Wars parody: Star Warners. To some fans, this was the unofficial 100th episode, with others stating Wakko's Wish to be the 100th episode.
The show has been noted for various examples of adult humor and innuendos that make it seem controversial for the show to have been targeted at children.
- In pre-production, the Warners were meant to be three duck brothers, but Warner Bros. thought there were too many duck characters on television, so they were changed to an unknown species.
- Even though the Warners have dog-like qualities, what they are exactly is unknown. The closest plausible real-world species is some kind of lemur.
- The names of the Warners were originally Yakky, Wakky, and little sister Dot along with a fourth sibling named Smakky. Yakky became Yakko, Wakky and Smakky were melded to become Wakko and Dot's name was kept.
- To poke fun of the original four Warner siblings, there were three ideas of a fourth sibling to Yakko, Wakko, and Dot. The names are Sakko, Smakko, and Lakko. Sakko was featured in the Animaniacs comic. Lakko was purposed for a proposed Animaniacs movie that never came to be, and Smakko was an obvious nod to his original counterpart Smakky. However, both Lakko and Smakko have stopped making appearances.
- Bob Daley, who ran the studio in 1992, saw a balloon of Yakko on the WB water tower, he ordered it to be removed because he thought it was a misshapen Mickey Mouse. The balloon was on the tower for less than 12 hours then popped shortly after it was removed. Writer Paul Rugg took a picture to prove that it had happened.
- After that, so the viewers wouldn't be confused with Mickey Mouse, Bob Daley had Tom Ruegger add side whiskers to Yakko and Wakko.
- The siblings share other similarities with Mickey Mouse, such as black fur with white faces, and the early style Mickey's eyes, and wear white gloves. However, their longer, slender ears contrast strongly with Mickey's.
- Dot's head is shaped like the famous Warner Bros. shield.
- In pre-production, Dot was originally supposed to be just the Warners' friend but was changed to their little sister.
- Rita and Runt originally were going to host the show.
References in other media
In the United States, the series bounced around to different channels following its run including Cartoon Network (where it was initially being re-ran near the end of its run), Nickelodeon and Nicktoons.
Animaniacs Wiki has a collection of images related to Animaniacs.