The Best Shows on Disney+

When Disney+ launches on November 12 at 12:01 a.m. PT, it will be packed with good stuff. There will be (almost) all of Disney’s animated movies. There will be the first episode of The Mandalorian, the first live-action Star Wars TV show. There will be original content from National Geographic, the entire Pixar library, Disney’s classic live-action family films, and more.

With more than 600 series and movies arriving at launch, Disney+ has almost too much to choose from. We’re here to help. We haven’t included any new series on this list — like you, we haven’t seen ’em yet — but the following shows have stood the test of time. Whether these programs are nostalgic favorites or new to you, there’s plenty of quality TV on Disney+. Here are some examples.

Boy Meets World

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For seven seasons audiences watched Cory Matthews (Ben Savage) and his on-again-off-again girlfriend Topanga (Danielle Fishel), his older brother Eric (Will Friedle), and his best friend Shawn (Rider Strong) navigate middle school, high school, and college, usually with the help of their teacher/principal/friend, Mr. Feeny (William Daniels). While Boy Meets World tackled heady issues like divorce, child abuse, and underage alcoholism, it was also a sweet and funny TGIF staple that earned legions of fans — not to mention a spinoff, Girl Meets World, which is also available on Disney+.

Darkwing Duck

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By day, Drake Mallard is a regular suburbanite who frets over his adopted daughter, Gosalyn. By night, he’s Darkwing Duck, a masked superhero who spends the midnight hours fighting crime alongside his sidekick, pilot Launchpad McQuack. Sure, sometimes Darkwing’s ego gets in the way of stopping evildoers, but when push comes to shove he’s not just the hero that St. Canard needs. He’s the hero that St. Canard deserves.


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Unlike the other Disney Afternoon cartoons, Gargoyles wasn’t afraid to go dark. Gargoyles‘ deep and nuanced characters, serialized plot lines, and pitch-black tone don’t seem out of place today, but at the time, there was no cartoon quite like it (give or take Batman: The Animated Series). While the third season suffered from some behind-the-scenes changes, the first two still hold up. If you have Disney+, they’re well worth revisiting.

Gravity Falls

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When Dipper and Mabel Pines decide to spend the summer with their great uncle Stan, a huckster who runs Gravity Falls’ No. 1 tourist trap, the Mystery Shack, they don’t know what they’re in for. Gravity Falls is kind of like a kid-friendly mashup of the X-Files and Twin Peaks. It’s also equal parts thrilling and hilarious, and one of the best cartoons of the past 20 years. You’ll come for Gravity Falls‘ long-running mystery and bizarre creatures, but it’s the delightful characters that’ll keep you around. Gravity Falls is weird, but it sure has a lot of heart.

Hannah Montana

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By day, she’s regular teenager Miley Stewart. By night, she’s international pop star Hannah Montana — and almost nobody knows her secret. Sound like trouble? Oh, it is. Not only did Hannah Montana launch Miley Cyrus’ career (and helped revitalize that of her real-life and on-screen father, Billy Ray Cyrus), but it’s also the highest-rated show in Disney Channel history. If you grew up with Miley, Disney+ gives you the perfect chance to revisit the series: Every episode will be available on Disney+ at launch.

Phineas and Ferb

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Stepbrothers Phineas and Ferb are going to have the best summer vacation they can, the only way they know how: by building ludicrous and extremely dangerous contraptions in their backyard and avoiding the wrath of their older sister, Candace. Phineas and Ferb has the same energy as The Family Guy (its co-creator, Dan Povenmire, used to work on Fox’s animated sitcom), but it’s not nearly as raunchy, leading to a show that the whole family can enjoy. It’s a great time to catch up on Phineas and Ferb, too: A spinoff movie, Candace Against the Universe, will hit Disney+ in 2020.

So Weird

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So Weird was never the biggest Disney Channel series, but over the years it’s become a cult classic. The title tells you why. In this X-Files-inspired series, a young woman tries to find a way to communicate with her dead father while touring with her rock star mom, and ends up running afoul of ghosts, vampires, Bigfoot, angels, and all kinds of other paranormal creatures. If you want something darker than the typical Disney Channel fare, look no further. You’ve found it.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars

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The Clone Wars feature film, which also serves as the series pilot, is not good. The animated series that followed very much is. While Star Wars: The Clone Wars might’ve started as a typical action-adventure cartoon, it quickly morphed into something a lot more complicated: A thorough and nuanced examination of the horrors of war in the Star Wars universe. Over the course of six seasons — with a seventh arriving on Disney+ next winter — The Clone Wars both deepened and expanded the Star Wars franchise in all kinds of unexpected ways. Even better? The end isn’t really the end — the story continues in The Clone Wars‘ also-great follow-up, Star Wars Rebels.

The Simpsons

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What’s left to say about The Simpsons? Bart, Homer, Marge, Lisa, and Maggie aren’t just cartoon characters. They’re cultural icons, not to mention stars of the longest-running sitcom in American history. Sure, by this point, there are probably more bad Simpsons episodes than good ones, but that doesn’t matter. On Disney+, you’ll be able to revisit the glory days of seasons 1 through 10 as much as you want. Trust us. Those will never get old.

The Suite Life of Zack and Cody

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Back before Cole Sprouse was chewing the scenery on The CW’s sexy Archie comics adaptation, Riverdale, he and his real-life brother Dylan played twins who lived in the fictional Tripton Hotel, where they hatched schemes alongside classmates and hotel staff. The Suite Life was nominated for three Emmys, regularly tops lists of the best-ever Disney Channel series, spawned both a movie and a sequel series, and helped launch the careers of young stars like the Sprouse brothers, Ashley Tisdale, and Brenda Song.

X-Men: The Animated Series

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Wolverine and the X-Men (also available on Disney+) might be the superior cartoon, but there’s still nothing quite like X-Men: The Animated Series. The phenomenally catchy theme song. The ludicrous Jim Lee-designed costumes. The weird, funny moments that have sparked a thousand memes. X-Men: The Animated Series doesn’t really hold up — if it was ever any good at all — but it doesn’t matter. This Saturday morning cartoon was many fans’ first introduction to Marvel’s merry mutants, and it remains one of the most popular takes on the characters. Nostalgia: It’s powerful stuff.

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