I'm trying to identify this cartoon, I must have seen it around the early 2000s, maybe late 90s (it was in English and I'm from the US). I remember seeing it a few times, so I probably had it on VHS. It was likely a standalone thing, not part of a series, and it wasn't quite movie-length, perhaps 30 minutes or less. My memories are vague but here's what I can remember:

  • The main character had a spaceship, a small-sized one that only fit one or two people
  • It took place partly in space, but a significant portion was in some underground caverns filled with technology (it may have been on Mars, or an asteroid?)
  • The part that stood out most to me was a suspenseful escape sequence where something went wrong and the whole place was collapsing. There were red flashing lights and an eerie alarm sound
  • I seem to remember some large robotic-looking structure in the underground part (something like a Starman from EarthBound?)
  • I don't remember many characters, it had sort of a feeling of isolation. They may not have been human, perhaps anthro, but I can't say for sure
  • The eerie sound effects stand out in my mind, they weren't especially unique but I remember the synthesized space noises and the sirens of the self-destructing technology were unnerving
  • I believe it was cel animated with painted backgrounds

Sorry for all the vagueness, I may have misremembered some parts-- if you can think of something that fits some criteria but not the others, feel free to offer it up. The only things I remember for sure are the spaceship, suspenseful collapse/escape sequence, and feelings of unease it gave me.

  • Hmmm… What about Crusher Joe? It’s an anime movie from 1983 that is up on YouTube dubbed in Russian, but was dubbed into English by a few companies in the 1990s. – Giacomo1968 Jun 14 at 3:12
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    @JakeGould I'm sure it wasn't anime, but thanks anyway – Gelatino Jun 14 at 3:35
  • Are you sure it was a TV cartoon? The computer game Space Quest I hits many of those points, and the 1991 VGA remake has a vaguely cartoonish feel. – R.M. Jun 14 at 5:10

"Space Ghost" made use of a small-cabined ship, and often featured caverns full of exotic machinery and robots. Many of the villains were anthropomorphic creatures (insects, etc.). Moreover, the show was a Filmation production which made use of the cel-over-layout structure you remember. "Space Ghost" often used an almost noir style in it's music and pacing.

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  • This isn't it either, but thanks for the help – Gelatino Jun 13 at 22:56

Maybe The New Adventures of Flash Gordon, animated series 1979-1982.

Some scenes feature caves where this lizard people enslave the characters (one of them is a Lion Anthro).

A group of the lizard people in a cave, all appear to be female, the lead one is holding a whip

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  • I don't think that was it. Though I can't remember the characters very well, I can say they didn't have a "realistic" build like the characters from this show. Thanks for helping narrow it down a little – Gelatino Jun 13 at 16:43

Rocket Robin Hood. Small space ships, crew of two. Sherwood Asteroid and lots of underground cave adventures. Cell animation. Lots of 1970 funky jazz music and throbbing alarms. I loved this show as a kid!

Rocket Robin Hood sitting in his chair at the controls of his spaceship

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