[[quoteright:315:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Spy_Kids.jpg]]

->''"My parents can't be spies; they're not cool enough!"''
--> -- '''Carmen Cortez'''

A movie franchise, written and directed by Creator/RobertRodriguez ([[Film/OnceUponATimeInMexico yes,]] ''[[Film/FromDuskTillDawn that]]'' [[ComicBook/SinCity Robert]] [[Film/{{Grindhouse}} Rodriguez]]), which is [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin about kid spies]].

An original trilogy was created from 2001 to 2003, focusing on Carmen and Juni Cortez, a BrotherSisterTeam of [[TeenSuperspy Preteen Superspies]], whose adventures came to resemble spying less and less as the series went along. In the first movie, they discover their seemingly normal parents are actually retired spies and set out to rescue them from a MadScientist who moonlights as the host of Juni's favorite [=TV=] show.

''Spy Kids 2: Island of Lost Dreams'' introduces a rival team of kid spies, whose dad ends up being the BigBad, and featured a plot taking place on a tropical island with a mysterious power. The third installment, ''Spy Kids 3D: Game Over'', was a UsefulNotes/ThreeDMovie set [[InsideAComputerSystem inside a video game]] created by a madman to TakeOverTheWorld.

Eight years later in 2011, Rodriguez saw fit to continue the series with ''Spy Kids: All The Time in the World''. The story this time focuses on a new pair of siblings whose step-mother is a retired spy for the OSS. When she get into trouble, the kids find out her secret and set out to save her with some assistance from a [[SheIsAllGrownUp now grown Carmen and Juni]]. Yes, it's [[RecycledScript rehashing the first movie's plot]], but in a way that brings everything around full circle. However, the film suffered from inevitable [[{{Sequelitis}} sequelitis]] and wasn't well received as critics trashed it once it hit the box office with Rotten Tomatoes giving it a 23%, even ''less'' than the third movie.

The character of Machete originated in this series, and a spoof of what he'd look like as a B-movie action hero later appeared in one of the ''Film/{{Grindhouse}}'' trailers. That trailer was eventually made into ''{{Film/Machete}}''[[note]]and the sequel ''Film/MacheteKills''[[/note]], a full-length exploitation flick parody. Alhough Rodriguez planned ''Machete'' starring Trejo long before ''Spy Kids'' started production, the project sat [[DevelopmentHell stagnant]] for years. In the meantime Rodriguez decided to insert a more family friendly version of the character in the Spy Kids movies. Which means that, yes, ''Machete'' and ''Spy Kids'' share a universe. Try watching these films the same way again.
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!!Tropes include:

* AbsenteeActor: it can be seen, in the first movie, that only Isador "Machete" Cortez attends Gregorio and Ingrid's wedding; there's no sign of their sister Marissa. This, out of universe, is because she wasn't cast yet - or even written into the Franchise - but in universe it is unknown as to why she did not attend their wedding.
* AccentUponTheWrongSyllable: In the fourth film, Cecil is constantly called SAY-sil (which comes out sounding like see-saw) except by the British dog, which pronounces it more correctly as say-SIL, even if it should be seh-SIL.
* TheAce: Subverted in ''Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over''. [[spoiler:An overly heroic super messiah comes in at the last minute, gives a rousing speech on how everyone should work together to win the game and singlehandedly bursts through the giant gates. He is instantly shot in the chest and loses all of his 99 lives. Made even funnier by the fact that he's played by Elijah Wood, and instead of having an actual name, he's simply known as "The Guy."]]
* ActionMom: Ingrid Cortez and Marissa Wilson.
* AdrenalineMakeover: The kids undergo this in the first film when they succeed in escaping Ms. Gradenko and her minions, by purchasing new outfits from a clothing store and donning sunglasses.
* AdultFear: The first film is loaded with this:
** Gregorio tells Ingrid firmly that they aren't telling the kids the truth because they don't want Carmen and Juni to have nightmares about enemies coming after them. Which enemies eventually do, but that's not the point.
** Juni's getting bullied, he's made up friends so that his parents won't worry, and he doesn't meet Gregorio's approval because he likes Floop's show.
** Carmen has been skipping school, and [[BrickJoke she still wears diapers]].
** Before the two get captured, Ingrid wants to call the kids from the submarine car. Gregorio barely convinces her not to.
** Floop threatens to turn the children into Fooglies during his dinner with Gregorio and Ingrid. Gregorio nearly charges at Floop, if not for the Thumb-Thumb guards.
** In the span of a few minutes, just before they're about to go on a normal school day, Carmen and Juni find out that Felix isn't their uncle, that their parents are spies who have been captured, and that something in their house was worth raiding.
** Carmen freaks out at the thought of her parents being turned into Fooglies, hence why she wants the Third Brain to enact a HostageforMacGuffin scenario. Overcoming that is part of her CharacterDevelopment.
** Floop's [[spoiler: actually Minion's]] plan: replace all the world leaders' children with robot clones and infiltrate accordingly for a CorruptCorporateExecutive. Which means dozens of real children would be disposed of . . .
* AdvertisedExtra: Watch a commercial for an upcoming airing of Spy Kids 3D on Disney Channel. Disney advertises it as "featuring" Creator/EmilyOsment, since she has become more well known thanks to HannahMontana after the movie came out, but she only appears in a brief conversation at the beginning and another brief appearance in the ending.
** Which is a bit ridiculous considering there were quite a few bigger name actors to invoke BillingDisplacement for.
* AgentsDating: The first movie starts with their mother telling the story of the two spies who fell in love, with several dates...in which they are some distance from each other since they're on opposing sides.
* AHeadAtEachEnd: A sea serpent-like critter from the second film.
* AlliterativeName: Gary and Gertie Giggles
** Not just those two. Carmen Cortez, anyone?
** Wilbur Wilson, too.
** And Danger D'Amo.
* AntagonistTitle: The other meaning of the title of the first film, referring to the robotic children that Floop constructed.
* TheAnticipator: When the Cortezes escape their imprisonment and start roaming Floop's lair, they fall through a trap door which leads to where Floop is waiting for them, [[NoMrBondIExpectYouToDine dinner spread out]], and was timing how long it took them to escape. He thought it would be a little sooner.
* AntiHero: Juni is a Type II in the fourth film.
* AscendedExtra: Donogan, one of the agents transformed into Fooglie's in the original, is upgraded to BigBad of the second film.
* ArcWords: "The third brain lives" in the first film.
* ArtisticLicenseEngineering: As part of a gag in the second film, the protagonists receive a pair of wristwatches that can do anything except tell time. "Anything" in this context includes the ability to access the Internet. The fact that it can access the Internet means it is a computer, and as anyone that knows anything about computers can tell you, it's impossible to have a functional computer without a clock.
* {{Back For The Finale}} - ''Every major character'' from the first two movies comes back for the "big fight" at the end of the third one.
** And some minor characters as well, like Dinky Winks and his son.
* BadassFamily: The Cortezes - we're talking about a family where the dad is AntonioBanderas, the uncle is Creator/DannyTrejo, and Grandpa is Creator/RicardoMontalban! and the aunt is Creator/JessicaAlba who is active throughout her pregnancy including while in labor.
* BadassGrandpa: Again, Grandpa is Creator/RicardoMontalban - what did you expect?
* BadassMustache - When AntonioBanderas is in "spy" mode, he wears a (fake) moustache. When he's in "dad" mode, he has no moustache. Fake Uncle Felix does things the other way round.
* BalefulPolymorph: [[spoiler: Apparently, this is how Floop's "Fooglies" are created.]]
* BarSlide: How Gregorio proposes to Ingrid - sliding the ring along the railing of the Eiffel Tower
* BareYourMidriff: Carmen wears an outfit that does such at the beginning of the second movie, up to and including the dinner scene. She also does this in the credits.
* BattleDiscretionShot: From the first movie: "Carmen? Juni? Close your eyes. We don't want you to see this." *mass of punching and kicking off camera*
* TheBechdelTest: The movie passes this in the first five minutes, with Carmen asking her mother for a bedtime story.
* BitchInSheepsClothing: Ms. Gradenko in the first film. She's introduced as the parents' liason when they go to find Floop, and as the agent who shows up to debrief the kids at the safehouse. When Juni realizes she came with Thumb-Thumbs however, which sink the sub, her mask fades away rather quickly.
* BrickJoke: After getting captured, Ingrid snarks that only one of the kids is in diapers. Later on, Juni calls Carmen "Diaper Lady" while they're bickering, as he had threatened to do earlier..
* BrotherSisterTeam: Carmen and Juni.
* CallAPegasusAHippogriff: At one point Juni refers to the [[MixAndMatchCritters half gorilla, half tarantula]] creature that's been following him as a centaur. Its actual name seems to be a "[[PunnyName spider monkey]]".
* CallBack: Several in the fourth film.
** For example, when Rebecca and Cecil find out Marissa works for the OSS...
-->'''Rebecca''': Impossible... she's not cool enough.
** And when the Wilsons and Carmen are surrounded by enemy agents at the hideout...
-->'''Carmen''': [[PrecisionFStrike Oh, shit...]][[SubvertedTrope take]] [[LastSecondWordSwap mushrooms.]]
* ChangelingFantasy - Played with: The kids are raised by their real parents, but don't know they're spies until the first film. An "uncle" does turn out to be an agent assigned to protect their family, though.
* ChekhovsGun:
** The kids' daily exercises at a home jungle gym makes them physically adept when they have to enter a mission for real.
** Juni's love of Floop's show. [[spoiler: His BrokenPedestal speech to Floop convinces the latter to make a HeelFaceTurn]].
** Juni's Fooglie drawing, sort of. [[spoiler: Minion [[BodyHorror forcibly transforms]] Gregorio into it, which lasts for all of 5 minutes.]]
** Electric bubblegum.
** Machete Elastic Wonder in the second film.
* ChekhovsGunman: Machete, Gregorio's "best man" at the wedding. He turns out to be the kids' uncle and a GadgeteerGenius.
* ChekhovsLecture: Ms. Gradenko when gaining the kids' trust in the safehouse shows them that Fooglies can communicate if you play their BlackSpeech backwards. [[spoiler: This allows Juni to communicate with them later.]]
* ChildHater: "It's good to be back, Alex. Let's never have children."
* {{Chickification}}: Carmen in the third film.
* TheChosenZero: Third movie. "The Guy" - Juni has this kind of doubt...then later one guy shows up thinking he's the chosen one...and takes five steps and dies.
* ChronicBackstabbingDisorder: Alexander Minion
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: [[spoiler:The Timekeeper steps out of the frame after disabling the Armageddon device and is never seen again.]]
* ClarkKenting: The dad, hilariously, simply puts on a moustache for his spy disguise. Averted with the mom in the flashback, who dons several wigs and can change her outfits in a matter of minutes.
* CloseOnTitle: The title card for the fourth movie appears before the final scene.
* CloserToEarth: The female members of the Giggles family are good; the male ones are evil.
* CloudCuckooLander: Gregorio thinks that Juni is this in the first film, but Floop is a bit closer, in that [[spoiler: he only realizes that he's not a bad guy when Minion turns on him and he's more focused on his show than on impressing Mr. Lisp.]]
* CollapsedMidSpeech: An entire mob of grown-ups pass out during a speech.
* ComicallyMissingThePoint: Happens to Floop at least once.
--->'''Minion''': You're spending too much time on this program, when you should be more concerned with our grand, diabolical plan
--->'''Floop''': Syndication?
* ConsultingAConvictedKiller: The kids call [[spoiler: Floop and Minion]] in the second film to ask about [[spoiler: dirty OSS agents]].
* CoolCar: In the first film, the Cortez parents own an [=SUV=] which has a lot of hidden gadgets and can turn into a submarine.
* ConspicuousCG: All over the place.
** The third movie has a ''really'' bad case of "Conspicuous 3D". Basically, they were banking on shoving 3D CGI in your face to sell the movie. You could make a DrinkingGame out of watching the movie in 2D and taking a shot every time every time a blurry foreground object, clearly meant to be rendered in 3D, blocks half the screen.
* CrazyPrepared: Spies have to be this way. Ingrid in the flashback to her spy days wore ''two'' wigs to change disguises while tracking down Gregorio.
* CrossOver: Creator/DannyTrejo has [[WordOfSaintPaul stated]] that the Machete Cortez in ''Film/{{Machete}}'' is what the Machete Cortez from ''Spy Kids'' does when he's not taking care of the kids. As Creator/RobertRodriguez intended to make a ''Machete'' movie years before [[DevelopmentHell he was able to,]] he inserted a more family-friendly version of the character into ''Spy Kids'' in the meantime, so this is technically canonical.
* CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass: Juni in the first film. His father thinks he's a CloudCuckooLander, his sister thinks he's an AnnoyingYoungerSibling, but he's very observant, remembers ChekhovsLecture from Ms. Gradenko, and gets cool ideas.
* DangerousDeviceDisposalDebacle: Before Mr. Cortez was a spy, he also worked in research and development making an AI computer referred to as the Third Brain. He was told to destroy it but admits he didn't want to and is shown switching it with a walnut and smashing ''that'' while putting the real brain in his pocket. "The Third Brain Still Lives" is a key plot point because Floop got ahold of it and used it to build his Spy Kids robots.
** He's briefly seen working on another brain in the third film, but dramatically smashes his entire lab table when his family calls him for help.
* DangerouslyGenreSavvy: Gerti in the second film. [[spoiler: She's implied that her dad has tried to take over the world multiple times, and pretends to be on his side to disable his plan and out him as a DirtyCop OSS agent, though at one point she lets the mask slip around Carmen to forge an EnemyMine.]]
* DatingCatwoman: Ingrid and Gregorio met when they were assigned to take each other out as rival spies. Instead, LoveAtFirstSight, covert dates, and a wedding ensued.
* DeadpanSnarker: In this franchise, try and find one kid that isn't this. Good luck with that.
* DefrostingIceQueen: Carmen goes through a somewhat low-key version of this in the first film.
* DemotedToExtra: Everyone, minus Carmen and Juni in the third film; they themselves take a back seat to the new Spy Kids introduced in the fourth film.
* DescriptionCut: Early in ''3'', Juni receives miniature sharks as a present from Romero. While he dangles his fingers in their fish bowl, he comes to the part of the letter where Romero says to not do anything foolish like [[WhatAnIdiot dangle your fingers in a fish bowl full of sharks]]. Cue him yanking them out just as they leap to snap at his fingers.
* DepravedKidsShowHost: Floop [[spoiler:before his HeelFaceTurn]]
* DirtyCop: More like Dirty OSS Agents, that are a running theme in the franchise. Ms. Gradenko is one in the first film, serving as a DoubleAgent for Floop [[spoiler: actually Minion]]. In the second film Donagan [[spoiler: and Felix]] are this, which breaks Juni's faith in the OSS.
* DisneyAcidSequence: Floop's songs. Anything that happens in Floop's Virtual Reality Room, really.
* DolledUpInstallment: ''Spy Kids 3D: Game Over'' was originally planned as a stand-alone movie about children going inside a video game.
* DoubleAgent:
** Ms. Gradenko in the first film. She drops the act rather quickly.
** [[spoiler:Danger D'Amo, head of the OSS]] in ''Spy Kids 4D''.
*** [[spoiler:MoleInCharge]].
* DragonAscendant: [[spoiler: Alexander Minion, following Floop's HeelFaceTurn.]]
* DullSurprise: Prevalent through the third film.
* EmbarrassingPassword: The password to the base the kids find in the first movie turns out to be their names. [[OverlyLongName Unfortunately...]]
* EvenEvilHasLovedOnes:
** Mr. Lisp has a son; Floop uses a robot double of "Johnny" to demonstrate the power of the "spy kids".
** Donagan loves his children, [[spoiler: and [[DontTellMama is afraid of his wife]] ]].
* EvenEvilHasStandards: "You hesitated.", "I had to - he's my son."
* EverybodyOwnsAFord: Isuzus in the first movie, particularly glaring because the company's passenger line at that point had dwindled to ''nothing'' but mid-size [=SUVs=]
* FateWorseThanDeath: [[spoiler: Floop]] trapped in The Virtual Room, a case of AndIMustScream as he's projected on the screens. He says that you can't get out unless someone turns it off from the outside, which means [[spoiler: Minion]] wanted to trap him there for possibly an ''eternity''.
* FiveManBand: Juni leads one in the third film.
** TheHero: Juni
** TheLancer: Rez/ Demetra.
** TheSmartGuy: Francis
** TheBigGuy: Arnold
** TheChick: Demetra, again. Carmen also counts.
** TheSixthRanger: Carmen
* FollowTheLeader: ''Agent Cody Banks''
* {{Foreshadowing}}:
** In the first film, Mr. Lisp hesitates to attack a robot double that matches his son to a tee, which ends up costing him. Later on, Ingrid and Gregori do a DoubleTake when they see Carmen and Juni's robot doubles, with similar results.
** Minion during the demonstration to Lisp gives a lot of cues to Floop. [[spoiler: When he gets the Third Brain, he uses the spy kids to depose Floop and trap him in The Virtual Room.]]
** From the second film: [[spoiler: courtesy of Felix, "[[EtTuBrute I said]] [[IronicEcho I'm not your uncle!"]]]]
* FunbagAirbag : Briefly averted in a gag about being given a lift by the pilot of a flying backpack... you face AWAY from the pilot....
* FunnyBackgroundEvent: Tick Tock yelling at his agents after Baby Spy accosts him with unexpected crop dusting.
* GirlishPigtails: Gerti Giggles has these, with operate as HelicopterHair.
* GlowingEyesOfDoom: The evil robot kids from the first film
* {{Gondor Calls For Aid}}: Third movie finale, which brought back nearly every character in the series.
* GogglesDoSomethingUnusual
* GovernmentAgencyOfFiction: The [=OSS=], which in RealLife is a [[http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USG/JCS/OSS/OSS-Functions/index.html defunct organization that existed in the early 1940s]].
* HannibalLecture: Carmen's robot double delivers one to Juni after receiving the third brain upgrade, about how he's "weak and useless". The real Carmen, incapacitated by Juni's double, delivers the inversion, YouAreBetterThanYouThinkYouAre.
* HappilyMarried: Gregorio and Ingrid, Grandpa and Grandma Cortez, and Wilbur and Marissa Wilson.
* HeelFaceRevolvingDoor: [[spoiler: Donnagon.]] In the first movie he's a minor good guy ([[BadassInDistress who spends most of the time as a Fooglie]]), in the second he's the BigBad, and in the third he's back to being a good guy again.
* HeelFaceTurn [[spoiler:Floop]], a relatively unexpected twist in the first movie
** [[spoiler: Donnogan Giggles]] has done this by the beginning of the third movie, as has [[spoiler: The Toymaker]] by the end of the third and [[spoiler:The Timekeeper]] by the end of the fourth. Also, [[spoiler:Minion]] shows up on the kids' side [[BackForTheFinale at the end]] when they called everyone...
** In fact, the only villains to ''not'' end up on the good side are Mr. Lisp, Ms. Gradenko, and [[spoiler:Tick Tock]]. Given the HighHeelFaceTurn trope, it's unusual because out of all the villains in the series, the only female is one of the three who don't get redeemed.
* HeelRealization: [[spoiler: Floop]] gets this when [[spoiler: Minion turns on him and locks him in the virtual room]].
* HeldGaze: Wilbur and Marissa Wilson have two between them, one right before TheBigDamnKiss at the end.
* {{Herald}}: "Uncle" Felix in the first movie
* HoistByHisOwnPetard:
** Floop [[spoiler: gets locked in the Virtual Room by Minion]], which was his invention.
** [[spoiler: Minion gets trapped in his own BalefulPolymorph machine at the climax of the first movie. He goes ahead and activates it anyway.]]
* HostageForMacGuffin: Ms. Gradenko while searching for the Third Brain at the safehouse suggests that the Third Brain could be exchanged for the Cortez parents's safety; even after Ms. Gradenko turns out to be working for Floop Carmen likes the idea. She only abandons it in favor of Juni's idea-- destroying the Brain-- when their robot doubles come to steal the brain from them.
* HurricaneOfPuns: Go on, make a DrinkingGame out of taking a shot each time someone says something time-related in the fourth movie, and stay alive by the end of the film. We dare you.
* HypercompetentSidekick: Minion in the first film. [[spoiler: It's why he turns on Floop.]]
* ICanChangeMyBeloved: Carmen has a crush on the rival bad boy spy and at one point insists she could change him. [[CharacterDevelopment She appears to get over it by the end of the movie.]]
* IFellForHours: In the second movie.
* IHaveYourWife: Minion suggests to Floop to capture Carmen and Juni for this reason, so they can be used against the parents. Carmen and Juni aren't easy to capture, however.
* ImprobableWeaponUser: Carmen and Juni when confronting Ms. Gradenko in the safehouse. Carmen realizes two gadgets the two are holding are quite heavy, and use them as throwing weights while making her way towards the jetpacks. Juni, who had handcuffed himself to a metal lunchbox earlier, uses the lunchbox and to knock out at least one henchman.
* IncrediblyLamePun: Occasionally; a particularly painful one by Donnagon in the second film: "This should be ''pain''...and simple."
* IndulgentFantasySegue: Gregorio has one in the first film in wanting to protect his son from a buly.
* InsistentTerminology: Cecil and Rebecca are not Marissa's kids. They are her stepkids.
* IWorkAlone: Juni in the fourth film. For ''7 years''.He eventually admits he did this because he felt it would be "uncool" to always keep working with his sister, so he struck out on his own, but ended up striking out instead.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Machete
* JetPack: Carmen flies one to retrieve the Third Brain from Floop's minions.
* JustAKid: Rebecca and Cecil are instructed to stay behind with Argonaut and Spy-Baby as the rest of the OSS infiltrates The Timekeeper's hideout. They understandably mistake it for [[YouAreGrounded being grounded]].
* JustifiedTitle: "Spy Kids" has a double meaning in the first film.
* KarmaHoudini: Agent Donnagan for attempting [[spoiler: to ''murder'' all the Cortezes]], in that [[spoiler: he only gets fired from being President of the OSS. Though he does have to answer to his wife for what he did.]]
* KickTheDog: Or at least [[TearJerker Squash the Bug....]] in the second film.
* KidHero
* KirkSummation: Used by [[spoiler:Valentin]] in the third movie when he [[spoiler:forgives the Toymaker for putting him in a wheelchair]] and by Rebecca and Cecil in the fourth movie when they convince [[spoiler:The Timekeeper]] that his plans to [[spoiler:travel back in time]] are only wreaking havoc on all the time in the world.
* LargeHam:
** Sylvester Stallone in the third movie
** Floop ''definitely'' deserves a mention.
** Really, all of the adults in all of the movies. They're clearly having an immense amount of fun, which is a big part of what makes the movie so entertaining.
* LaserGuidedKarma: Carmen when she encounters Juni's robot double the first time gets grabbed by him. She then says "I've always wanted to do this" -- that is punch Juni-- and tries to do so to his double. It turns out that the robot doubles are literally MadeOfIron, however.
* LastSecondWordSwap: "Oh shi...take mushrooms."
* LethalLavaLand: Lampshaded in the third film.
* LighterAndSofter: Compared with the other films directed by Robert Rodriguez (Well, excluding ''Film/TheAdventuresOfSharkboyAndLavagirl'' and ''Film/{{Shorts}}''...)
* LiteralSurveillanceBug: Ralph is a small robot bug who's primary function serves as a spy.
* TheLoad: Carmen hold the impression that Juni is this in the first film, but it gets subverted in many ways. First, he realizes before she does that Ms. Gradenko is a DirtyCop working for Floop, that The Third Brain has to be destroyed, [[spoiler: how to talk to the Fooglies]], and [[spoiler: convinces Floop to do a HeelFaceTurn]]. Carmen eventually realizes this and tells Juni YouAreBetterThanYouThinkYouAre.
* LukeIAmYourFather: Machete in the first film reveals to the kids that he's their uncle after they come to his shop, and their "real uncle' since Felix is a fake, as Juni points out.
* MacheteMayhem: [[MeaningfulName Machete]]
* MadScientist: Two of them - Floop and Romero.
* {{Manchild}}: The BigBad of the first film, Floop.
* ManicPixieDreamGirl: Subverted. Carmen is attracted to Gary Giggles in the second movie, insisting that she could "change him", and her giving up on this is played as CharacterDevelopment. Needless to say, {{shipping}} ensued anyway.
* MasterOfDisguise: Ingrid at the beginning of the first film describes how spies were this, and in the flashback she's shown to be changing wigs several times. Carmen and Juni manage to purchase new clothes while on the run, undergo an AdrenalineMakeover and hide from the villains for a while.
* MixAndMatchCritters: Romero's animals in the second film
* TheMole: [[spoiler:Ms. Gradenko and, later on, Felix, though he was an unwilling case of it.]]
* MundaneSolution: The rubber band in the second film
** Most of the second movie, since none of their normal gadgets worked.
* NeverSayDie: Noticeably invoked in Ingrid's bedtime story in the first film; they use euphemisms such as "destroy", "take him out", and a finger gesture across the throat in place of the words "kill," or "die".
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: [[SubvertedTrope Subverted]] in the third film; Valentin deliberately releases the Toymaker from his virtual prison [[spoiler:just so he could personally forgive him for paralyzing him]].
* NiceJobFixingItVillain: Ms. Gradenko shows the kids how to communicate with the Fooglies by playing their audio backwards; guess what Juni uses later.
* NoMrBondIExpectYouToDine: Happens to the parents in the first movie.
* NotDisabledInVR: Grandpa Cortez - an elderly, retired spy using a wheelchair - joins Juni Cortez on the adventure in the virtual world, and they immediately come across a powerup that lets him stand on his feet for the first time in years. Unfortunately, he has to go back to using the wheelchair when their mission is over...
* NumberedSequels
* OverlyLongName: Carmen's full name is Carmen Elizabeth Juanita Echo Sky Brava Cortez, and Juni's is Juni Rocket Racer Rebel Cortez.
** Both of which are jokes in themselves. Rocket, Racer, and Rebel are the names of three of Rodriguez's sons.
* ParentsInDistress: The premise of the first movie.
* ParentService: The casting of the parents.
* PetTheDog: In the first film's flashback, Ingrid was prepared to take out Gregorio, while they were still rival spies, only he confronted her in the elevator, revealing without words that she was his target in turn. He then placed the photographs together, pressed the elevator button, and let her go. This led to their romance.
* PinkMeansFeminine: Alexandra wears a pink sweater and then a pink dress.
* PrecisionFStrike: [[SubvertedTrope Subverted]] by a LastSecondWordSwap, once in each of the first two movies. Done again by Carmen in the fourth film when she, Marissa, Rebecca, Cecil, and Spy-Baby are cornered by Tick Tock's agents.
-->'''Carmen''': Oh, shit...take mushrooms.
* PregnantBadass: Marissa, in the beginning of the fourth film, big time. She keeps fighting the bad guys, ''even after she starts feeling contractions''.
* PunchPunchPunchUhOh: When the Carmen and Juni robots first show up in the first movie, Carmen repeatedly tries to beat up the solid metal robot Juni with her bare hands. This does not end well. Robot-Juni eventually writes her off and walks away in disinterest after she knocks herself out with an attempted head-butt.
* QuicksandSucks: Marissa, Carmen, and Juni would've been smothered in The Timekeeper's special hourglass sands [[spoiler:had Carmen not had her atomic lipstick on hand]].
* RealMenWearPink: Invoked by Juni in movie 2 when he claims to know ballet to impress Alexandria at the President's ball. HilarityEnsues when the two start dancing.
** Also Machete, happily playing manny to the kids when not turning entire crime syndicates into red paste.
* ReversePolarity: The evil robot kids are [[HeelFaceTurn turned good]] by ''inverting their binary code''.
** In the second film, Gerti disables the amusement park ride in the opening by reversing the polarity, justifying it by saying that the ride works using electromagnets.
* RobotBuddy: Ralph, the Literal Spy Bug
* SadisticChoice: [[spoiler: Minion gets one near the end of the first movie, when he gets strapped in the Fooglie-creator; either he can activate it and wind up horribly disfigured, or he can not activate it and remain stuck in the basement, with no guarantee anyone will come back to help him. [[OneWingedAngel He chose to do the former]]]].
* SamusIsAGirl: Demetra in the third film.
** [[spoiler:She's also not real.]]
* SealedEvilInACan: The Toymaker in the third movie.
* ShoePhone: The second movie includes an advanced watch that does everything ''except'' tell time, since "there was no room left for the clock". Needless to say, TheRival has a more advanced version of the same device, with a clock.
* SigilSpam: Most prominent in the second movie
* ShoutOut: Juni starts to chant the [[TheLordOfTheRings One Ring poem]] when he reaches for a cursed necklace in the second movie.
** In the outtakes, at one point he pulls it out, strokes it, and says, "My Precious."
** The Fooglies' song (''"Floop is a madman, help us, save us"'') which can only be heard when played backwards, is probably a reference to Music/TheBeatles "Paul Is Dead" rumors, one of which includes a song that, when played backwards, sounds like it says "Paul is a dead man, miss him, miss him".
** Antonio Banderas fixing Juni's hair at the beginning of the second movie is probably a shout-out to him doing the same exact thing to his son in the film Four Rooms. Probably because that section of the film was directed by Robert Rodriguez as well.
* SpannerInTheWorks: Great job [[spoiler:tossing your brother's tag in the trash, Carmen. You just single-handedly saved the world from the Armageddon device.]]
* TheStinger: The first movie has a very odd one; just a near-random panning shot of one of the hallways in Floop's castle. It's as though they wanted to put something there, but couldn't.
* StopCopyingMe: Juni uses this twice, with voices to match.
* SuperFamilyTeam
* TeenSuperspy: Or in this case, ''preteen'' superspies
** Though Carmen is a Teen by the third film.
* ThermalDissonance
* ThirdIs3D: ''Game Over''.
* UnfortunateNames: ''Gary'' and ''Gerti'' '''''Giggles?''''' Even those poor kids who were named after the [=ESPN=] network would point and laugh.
* {{Unperson}}: Carmen considers her brother to be this at first in the fourth film. When he finally does show up, we find out exactly why... and it's not what you expect (i.e. he didn't pull a FaceHeelTurn; rather, it's a simple case of IWorkAlone that never quite worked out for him).
* UnwittingPawn: [[spoiler:The Timekeeper to Tick Tock]].
* VillainSong: Floop gets one in the first film, written by DannyElfman in his signature style. Subverted when [[spoiler: it turns out he's not a villain at all.]]
* WackyRacing: Included in the third film
* WeddingSmashers: The parents' wedding as seen in a {{Flashback}} from the first movie
* WhamLine: In ''3D'':
-->'''Carmen:''' Juni, the Toymaker is the one [[spoiler:who put Grandpa in a wheelchair.]]
* WhiteAndGreyMorality: Almost none of the villains in the series stay evil.
* WellIntentionedExtremist: [[spoiler:The Timekeeper]].
* WouldntHitAGirl: Gary when Carmen turns on him
* {{Writers Cannot do Math}}: In the third movie, the accident which [[spoiler:caused Grandpa's paralysis]] is said to have happened 30 years ago. [[spoiler:When talking to the Toy Maker, Grandpa says that his condition made him miss his daughter's birth.]] Even assuming Ingrid had her first child at 18, that places Carmen at 12 far younger than she actually is.
** [[FanWank A few years could be added on.]] The difference between 30 and 32 or 33 might seem to pedantic for [[spoiler:him]] to mention. Still rather iffy, though.
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