If you grew up in the 90s and 2000s, the Disney Channel was probably a main channel for you. To get around, their bumpers, with a rotating array of their stars drawing the canal logo, were just as iconic and memorable. You would break out the glow stick and pretend you were drawing the logo, just like they did. As an adult, you realize that you or these Disney stars were able to draw it correctly.
Like Nickelodeon, the Disney Channel was part of a healthy diet for kids afternoons. It contained original programming that was not only safe for the kids but also entertaining. Thanks to Disney +, many of these classic shows from the channel can be given a new life thanks to new viewers and old fans.
10) Phineas and Ferb
Their elongated head shapes were rather strange, but despite that, Phineas and Ferb was one of the greatest animated shows Disney Channel has ever produced. The series revolves around Phineas Flynn and Ferb Fletcher, two stepbrothers trying to find fun things to do during the summer holidays.
In almost every episode, the two brothers would find adventure through their technically impressive projects. Their controlling older sister, Candance, often tried her best to ruin their plans for summer fun. Surprisingly, Phineas and Ferb is a great watch for adults as well as children, which is a rarity for Disney Channel cartoons.
9) Wizards from Waverly Place
Trying their best to take advantage of the fame that Harry Potter had in the late 2000s, the Disney Channel rolled out Wizards of Waverly Place. The show revolved around the magically inclined Russo children as they begin their training as wizards to see who would retain their powers at the end of it.
While the show was making Selena gomez – who played the main character, Alex Russo – a well-known name, the other two main characters in the series, Justin (David Henrie) and Max (Jake T. Austin) played intricate roles in making this sitcom a long-standing favorite.
8) Good luck Charlie
A real family sitcom in every sense of the word, Good luck Charlie centered around the Duncan family as they try to adapt to the birth of Charlotte “Charlie” Duncan. The show’s main character, Teddy (Bridgit Mendler), decided to make a video diary for Charlie that she can use later in life as a teenager.
Although it was a bit cheesy and saccharin, Good luck Charlie was one of the sub-radar sitcoms that Disney Channel made from time to time. Although other programs were more popular while broadcasting (think Jessie), Good luck Charlie is a homely comedy that will be a pleasant surprise for those who want to revisit.
7) Even Stevens
That’s not a stretch to say Even Stevens was Disney Channel’s first, bonafide, live-action hit. When the series premiered in 2000, the network had trouble landing a live-action hit. Yes, The famous Jett Jackson was in the air at the time, but it did not come close to the success that Even Stevens would become.
The series, which followed a brother and sister who were opposites, paved the way for the network in its quest for live-action success, which was fully realized when a certain teenage girl landed her series in 2001.
6) Gravity Falls
Looking at Gravity decreases, it’s still hard to fathom that a cartoon like this landed on the Disney Channel. It was a complete departure from any animated series seen on the network at the time, with its dark tone and pre-teen story that somehow got the green light from network leaders.
Gravity Falls centered around the twins, Dipper and Mabel Pines, as they visit Gravity Falls to spend time with their great-uncle (or “grunkle”), Stan Pines. However, the city is filled with paranormal activity and supernatural creatures that the duo meet and explore. It’s one of the best Disney Channel shows ever produced, and luckily it can be relieved in all its glory at Disney +.
With Wizards of Waverly Place and Suite life on the deck When it went off the air, the Disney Channel needed a new star to lead the channel into the 2010s. Enter Debby Ryan as the titular Jessie, a teenager from Texas who moves to New York City and becomes a nanny for four rich, battered children.
Even though it’s been six years since the last episode aired, the comedy is on Jessie has aged well. This show is a guilty pleasure even among adults, who, while cursing themselves from watching the show in public, will secretly snatch the goodies and sing along to the theme song when no one else is watching.
4) It’s So Raven
Together with Lizzie McGuire, It’s So Raven was more than just a pre-teen sitcom. It was an event in the lives of many children in the days before social media. The show participated Raven-Symoné like Raven Baxter, a normal teenage girl who grows up in San Francisco and who also happens to have the power to look into the future.
Although her “visions” are incomplete, she can use her gift to prevent (or make into reality) events that she sees happening. It’s an understatement to say that this show was hugely popular and it would be one of the rare Disney Channel properties to have a sequel where Raven’s Home continues with its predecessor that stopped in 2017.
3) Lizzie McGuire
With Even Stevens When they landed the network’s first live-action hit, the leaders went back to the drawing board to see what series they could create next time that would expand that success. Enter Lizzie McGuire, which premiered in 2001 and quickly rose to the ranks as the channel’s most popular program.
Cast Hilary Duff as the title character, the show is about her and her group of friends, Gordo (Adam Lamberg) and Miranda (Lalaine) while navigating middle school. By the end of her run, Lizzie McGuire would change the channel’s fortunes and landscape and would also become the first series to have a film released in theaters, The Lizzie McGuire movie, which ended the show’s story.
2) Hannah Montana
This was the show that convinced the leaders on the channel that they could not only shape teenage stars but also pop stars. When Lizzie McGuire was off the network, Disney Channel ratings found gold in Hannah Montana. Cast Miley cyrus, the premise of the show was simple: Miley Stewart (Cyrus) was a normal teenage girl by day, but by night became the titular international superstar.
Despite its simplicity (or because of it), Hannah Montana became a huge hit for the network and a marketing goldmine with merchandise, albums, movies: you name it, it was salable. There may never be another Disney show out there in terms of pure marketability, just like Hannah Montana was.
1) KC Undercover
While Hannah Montana was without a doubt Disney Channel’s best-selling show, KC Undercover was its best when it came to its history and production. KC Undercover follows a family of spies, and what made it such an amazing series was thanks to input from its lead actress, Zendaya. She would not sign up for the project unless she had a major role in its creative process, and she strived to make the series stand out from its network predecessors with its strong, diverse talent.
Although the show is healthy for family viewing, the show had the spice and flair that was lacking from its other series, and the story was nowhere near as saccharine as its peers, going at a more serialized pace than one that prioritized individual episodes.
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