Hanna-Barbera created this cartoon in 1965 as a companion for Secret Squirrel. Atom Ant is a very strong ant who fights crime, mainly the plots of mad scientists.
This cartoon provides examples of:
- Alliterative Name: Not only Atom Ant, but also the Ferocious Flea.
- Animal Superhero: An anthropomorphic ant fighting crime.
- Brought to You by the Letter "S": Atom Ant wears an "A" on his uniform.
- Catchphrase: "Up and at 'em, Atom Ant!"
- Charles Atlas Super Power: Played with. Atom Ant gets his powers from lifting weights — but in much the same way that Popeye gets his powers from spinach. Three reps with his giant barbells is enough to replenish his superpowers for the rest of the day.
- Clear My Name: One episode featured the Ferocious Flea commiting crimes while disguised as Atom Ant.
- Donut Mess with a Cop: In a comic book story, the police chief asks for Atom Ant's help because "a super-villain is stealing all sweets from the doughnut shop".Police Chief: If the city's doughnut supply disappears, the entire police force will collapse!
- Evil Counterpart: Ferocious Flea.
- Flying Brick: Atom Ant is incredibly strong and capable of flight.
- Four-Legged Insect: Atom Ant has two arms and two legs.
- Metronomic Man Mashing: The tiny Atom Ant hands out pounding in this style.
- Mythology Gag: A group of motorcycling ants in one particular episode are named the Ant Hill Mob. That name would be applied to the Runyan-esque gangsters who appeared later on Wacky Races and The Perils of Penelope Pitstop.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Atom may be small but he can pack quite a lot of strength.
- Police are Useless: When two bank robbers hired a female ant to distract Atom Ant during a robbery, the police chief had only two officers to send, and he was one of them. Their patrol car was so bad that they were in no condition to stop the robbers.
- Punny Name: "Atom Ant" is a play on "adamant".
- Was this the inspiration for the name of the band "Adam and the Ants"?
- Strong Ants: Probably not in the way you'd expect from the trope.
- Three Shorts: Atom Ant leads off the show as the A short, B is Precious Pupp and C is The Hillbilly Bears.