The cartoon was broadcast on Kids' WB from September 9, 1995 through to December 13, 1996. The show lasted for two seasons, with a total of 23 episodes produced. The episodes are all approx. 30 minutes long in length.
The entire series, in a five-disc set, was released on DVD on July 10, 2012.
The television series was produced by Universal Animation Studios along with AKOM and Flextech Television Limited, in association with Shiny Entertainment and Playmates Toys (the toy line was released at the same time). The television series was based on characters created for the video games by Doug TenNapel, developed as a series by Doug Langdale, and produced by David Perry, the latter who had also produced the video game series.
In the United States, the show was aired on Kids' WB on The Warner Brothers Television Network. In the United Kingdom, it was shown on Channel 4 and TCC (The Children's Channel) in the 90s, and as of 2000's, the show has seen occasional reruns on Nickelodeon. The cartoon was broadcast in the Republic of Ireland on RTE Two in 1997. The series was distributed by NBCUniversal Television Distribution.
The plot of the cartoon followed a similar plot to the video games. No origin story is presented, except within the lyrics of the opening theme song to the every episode. By the time of the pilot episode, Earthworm Jim has already long since been transformed into a superhero by the super suit, and is already in a strange romantic relationship with Princess What's-Her-Name, with Jim being obsessed, and the Princess being perpetually confused.
The role of Peter Puppy is greatly expanded in the cartoon, with Peter serving as Jim's sidekick in his adventures. Snott is also present at Jim's hideout in Terlawk. Like in the video games, many of the Universe's greatest villains hunt Jim in an attempt to get the super suit. Jim must also often rescue Peter or the Princess from recurring villains also in the games.
Although the majority of notable characters from the game return in the cartoon, some do not, such as Snott's evil uncle Major Mucus, and Chuck and Fifi, presumably because Jim had already defeated them once-and-for-all in the games.
In the show's first season, halfway through all but one episode, there would be a small interlude which would feature a villain going through various situations (Psycrow advertising a superhero treatment center, Professor Monkey-For-A-Head telling a bedtime story to his monkey or even Bob the Killer Goldfish trying to educate the other fish on his home planet). Some of these interludes would feature cameos from Earthworm Jim. In Season 2, there are no interludes, most likely due to time constrains.
Through soil he did crawl.
A super suit did fall.
Jim was just a dirt-eating chewy link of worm flesh,
but all that came to a crashing end. Ahahahahaaa...
He's such a groovy guy.
cruisin' through the Universe, havin' lots of fun.
Here comes Earthworm Jim,
you know that he's the mighty one - LOOK OUT!
*whistling to theme song tune break*
Despite his great big muscles, and his really big ray gun,
Jim is still an Earthworm, but then he's the only one.
With a super suit to make him really super strong,
Jim can be a winner if we only sing along... ALRIGHT!
Peter: We think he's mighty fine
Peter: A hero for all time!
EARTHWORM! EARTHWORM! EARTHWORM! EARTHWORM JIM! HURRAY FOR HIMMMMMMMM!
- Dan Castellaneta as Earthworm Jim (all 23 episodes) / Snott (all episodes) / Evil Jim (3 episodes) / Turns-His-Eyes-Inside-Out Boy, Jim's Four Brains, The Grim Reaper, Jaepius: God of Puns
- Jeff Bennett as Narrator (all episodes) / Peter Puppy (all episodes) / The Hamsternator (4 episodes) / Great Worm Spirit, Puce Dynamo, The President of the United States,
- Kath Soucie as Princess What's-Her-Name (18 episodes) / Johnny Dactyl's Mum/, Perpsichore: Goddess of Disco, Cody
- Jim Cummings as Psy-Crow (all 23 episodes) / Bob the Killer Goldfish (9 episodes) / Number Four / Whooping Cough Boy / Zantor / Johnny Dactyl / The Sword of Righteousness / The Fur-Bearing Trout / Maggot / Cuban Band Leader / Ape / Walter / Santa Clause, The Sword of Righteousness, Phlegmaphus: God of Nasal Discharge, Lower Back-Pain Man,
- Andrea Martin as Queen Slug-for-a-Butt ,The Torch Singer
- Charlie Adler as Professor Monkey-For-A-Head (17 episodes) / Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1 episode)The Doorman of The Gods, Superhero #1
- Edward Hibbert as Evil the Cat (15 episodes)
- John Kassir as Henchrat (10 episodes)
- Gregg Berger – Superhero #2
- S. Scott Bullock – various
- Miriam Flynn – Malice The Dog
- Brad Garrett – The Lord of Nightmares
- Lisa Kaplan – various
- Danny Mann – Archbug
- Edie McClurg – various
- Dee Dee Rescher — The Purple Ailen
- Kevin Michael Richardson – The Anti-Fish
- Ben Stein – Rosebud The Nameless Beast, Dr. Houston
- Billy West – The Sturgeon
- April Winchell – Mrs. Bleverage
- The Book of Doom
- Assault and Battery
- Day of the Fish
- Conqueror Worm
- Upholstered Peril
- Sword of Righteousness
- The Egg Beater
- The Great Secret of The Universe
- Bring Me the Head of Earthworm Jim
- Queen What's-Her-Name
- The Anti-Fish
- The Origins of Peter Puppy
- Opposites Attack!
- Darwin's Nightmare
- The Exile of Lucy
- Evil in Love
- Hyper Psycrow
- Peanut of the Apes
- Lounge Day's Journey Into Night
- Wizard of Ooze
- For Whom the Jingle Bell Tolls
- Evil Jim, the main villain in Earthworm Jim: Menace 2 the Galaxy, made his first appearance in the TV series.
- There were Earthworm Jim comics which tied into the TV series in association with Marvel comics.
- Playmates Toys released an action figure line based on the series.
- Despite the show being funny and entertaining, Doug TenNapel apparently disliked it and only confessed it was a tie-in to the video games. Its second season did not get enough high ratings on Kids WB! to last a third season, however. It had 4 VHS releases containing 2 episodes each and one featurette each, but now it is out-of-print and are very hard to find. The complete series, however, was eventually released onto DVD in July 2011 in New Zealand and Australia. It was released again on November 2012 in North America.
- A number of announcements by Interplay and Douglas TenNapel in April 2008 about a new and updated Earthworm Jim television series was said to be in the works.
- There was an updated version of the original EWJ game in 2010 called "Earthworm Jim HD"
- In 2019, Intellivision Entertainment announced development of a new Earthworm Jim video game exclusively for the new Amico console.
- Earthworm Jim The Comic Book was created by Doug TenNapel, and the first book published December 2019 after being successfully crowd funded.