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->'''Randy:''' Network executives, they sure take the cake.\\
'''Joy:''' Plus, they don't let people cuss anymore on TV until a certain time at night. ''[checks watch]'' Douchebags.
-->-- ''Series/MyNameIsEarl''
%% One quote is sufficient. Please place additional entries on the quotes tab.

When on a comedy the characters make jokes at the expense of the studio or network funding their movie or TV show. In the US, the favorite target out of the Big Four Networks seems to be FOX, although all networks are AcceptableTargets at some point or another (Creator/{{NBC}} has seemed to ''encourage'' it since about 2006, right around when it became the ButtMonkey of the four major networks).

This trope would also fit those moments when an embittered author, or one cynical of the morality of the publishing industry, inserts into his work a thinly disguised slap to the face of the publishing house that is keeping him in work, albeit for not entirely satisfactory royalties or advance payments.

A sister trope to TakeThat and WriterRevolt. Related to TakeThatAudience. Often overlaps with SelfDeprecation (unless the author is even more correct than he believes about his employers being flawed.) Remembering who wears the pants can combine this with EndOfSeriesAwareness.

!!Examples with their own subpages:

* BitingTheHandHumor/{{Anime}}
* BitingTheHandHumor/LiveActionFilm
* BitingTheHandHumor/LiveActionTV
* BitingTheHandHumor/{{Music}}
* BitingTheHandHumor/{{Radio}}
* BitingTheHandHumor/VideoGames
* BitingTheHandHumor/WebMedia
* BitingTheHandHumor/WesternAnimation
** [[BitingTheHandHumor/FoxAnimatedSeries Animated shows that aired on Fox]]

!!Other examples:

* Creator/FranciscoDeGoya's portrait of King Carlos IV and his family are an almost GrotesqueGallery where they appear as pudgy, unattractive people. The Queen is standing in the center of the painting, a subtle hint towards the general consensus at the time that she was the one holding the strings in the palace.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* In the first ''ComicBook/GreatLakesAvengers'', Comicbook/SquirrelGirl and Grasshopper appear in an offstage prologue. Grasshopper says "The only people reading comics now are [[TakeThatAudience overweight thirty-year-olds]] [[BasementDweller living in their mother's basement]]." Comicbook/SquirrelGirl's sidekick replies in an inset: "Hey, fanboys, don't take that lying down! Write angry letters to Creator/{{Marvel|Comics}} today!"
* ''ComicBook/AvengersAcademy'':
** Hazmat in issue #10: "Today's gonna suck as much as all the others... but just a little bit ''harder''. Because it's ''ComicBook/OneMoreDay''... with ''no end in sight''."
** In another issue, a couple of the kids [[LeaningOnTheFourthWall Lean On The Fourth Wall]] and complain about how the latest CrisisCrossover involving the [[ComicBook/AvengersVsXMen Avengers and X-Men]] has been dragging on for too damn long.
* In ''ComicBook/MarvelAdventures: Avengers,'' Doc Samson's [[ComicBook/OneMoreDay "Needs a wife" assessment of Spider-Man]] when the Avengers go in for therapy.
* The [[http://www.recalledcomics.com/UniverseXSpidey1RecalledHarras.php first printing]] of ''[[http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2005/06/16/comic-book-urban-legends-revealed-3/ Universe X: Spidey #1]]'' contains a TakeThat [[EasterEgg hidden message]] on a bookshelf: "Bob Harras. Ha, Ha. He's gone! Good riddance to bad rubbish. He was a nasty S.O.B."
* When Ed Brubaker did a two-issue story on ''ComicBook/TomStrong'', he produced a DeconstructiveParody of ''ComicBook/{{Miracleman}}'', by Tom Strong's creator Creator/AlanMoore, arguing that ''Miracleman'' was not so much "realistic", as [[TrueArtIsAngsty pointlessly nasty and depressing for the sake of it]].
* In one issue of ''ComicBook/YoungJustice'', Arrowette and Wonder Girl are complaining at length about Creator/WarnerBros until one of them whispers something to the other. It's not explicit, but strongly implied that she had to be reminded not to make fun of the corporate parent of Creator/DCComics. In another issue, in a scene also involving the two girls, Arrowette complains about how much she hates Internet service providers ([=ISPs=]) when their connection dies. Wonder Girl then nervously replies, "No you don't! You LOVE! [=ISPs=]! Especially ''the biggest one!''" And to that end, Arrowette decides to shut up. At the time the comic was released, that "biggest one", America Online, had just completed a merger with Time Warner, the parent company of Warner Bros. and therefore DC, to form AOL Time Warner.
%% Please keep the name AOL Time Warner. That was the name it used from 2001-2003, the time the comic was released.
* Comicbook/{{New 52}} ''Comicbook/HarleyQuinn'' #8 features Dan [=DiDio=] suggesting a new DC relaunch, with all the heroes turned into antelopes and wildebeests by magic, which they'll call the [[{{Pun}} Gnu 52]]. [[ItMakesSenseInContext The DC offices promptly get hit with bags of pet poop catapulted from Harley's building.]]
* The first issue of the 2015 run of ''Comic/HowardTheDuck'' had Howard going to Florida. Tara Tam thought they were going to Disney World, but Howard replies "Who'd want to see [[ComicBook/DisneyDucksComicUniverse a bunch of pantless ducks]]?" Which not only is a swipe at Marvel's owner Disney, but an in joke to Howard wearing pants exactly because decades prior Marvel was threatened due to him being too similar to Westernanimation/{{Donald|Duck}}...
* Lampshaded in issue #5 of the first ComicBook/SheHulk ongoing, where She-Hulk and several neighbors get TrappedInTVLand. One of the shows they visit is a parody of ''WesternAnimation/RobocopTheAnimatedSeries'', and the TagalongKid, who's seen [[Film/Robocop1987 the original movie]], starts complaining about how wimpy the cartoon is, only for She-Hulk to slap a hand over his mouth.
-->"Careful what you say, Paul. That's a ''Marvel'' show. Knocking it could be more than ''my'' book's worth!"

[[folder:Fan Fic]]
* In an in-universe example, in the essay-fic, ''[[Fanfic/EquestriaAHistoryRevealed Equestria: A History Revealed]]'', the narrator directly belittles her professor who is currently marking her work, and curses at him a couple of times in-text.

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* In ''Disney/TheLionKing'', Zazu starts to sing "It's A Small World." Scar [[BigNo freaks out]] and demands him to sing [[AnythingButThat anything else but that]]. [[Theatre/TheLionKing The stage musical]] uses "Be Our Guest". It doubles as a MythologyGag, since "Be Our Guest" was from [[Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast the first Disney animated film that became a musical and paved the way for Lion King to come on Broadway]]. When ''Beauty and the Beast'' closed, it got replaced with [[Film/MaryPoppins "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious."]] In later runs, he sings [[Disney/{{Frozen}} "Let It Go"]] instead.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheLegoMovie'' criticizes the Lego Company's themed sets several times, and the villain has minions called "micro-managers" and a device called the "think tank" (presumably both jabs at ExecutiveMeddling).
* ''WesternAnimation/BarbieAFashionFairytale'': Sort of, in the overture scene. This movie was one of the first Barbie movies with modern setting and themes, and no inspiration from fairy tales anymore. Because, certainly, [[ExecutiveMeddling it was required from Mattel]]. Judging from Barbie's argument with the movie director, [[WriterRevolt the writers were not too happy about it.]] Thus the obnoxious director distort the story of a fairy tale because of "fashionable" elements and refuse dialogue to the point of firing Barbie, while the latter tries in vain to calmly explain that the really cool tale is going to be lost.

* Showing that this sort of thing is OlderThanTheyThink, many sinners depicted in Hell in ''Literature/TheDivineComedy'' were still living folks with more authority than he'd have liked over him. The Eight Circle of Hell contained three Popes who were alive during Dante's time, including the current one, and numerous other government officials and nobles[[note]]Fortunately for Dante, Pope Boniface VIII was said to have something of a sense of humor, and when one such official complained that "Dante has put me in Hell", he supposedly chuckled a little and said, "sorry, I can't help you, I'm not in charge of Hell". However, this opposition to the Vatican only lasted as long as the White Guelphs - who shared his ideas - held power in Rome, which they only did until 1301. Even so, Boniface would have allowed Dante to remain in Rome, but he left on his own accord.[[/note]].
* In ''Discworld/{{Maskerade}}'', Terry Pratchett manages a dig at the publishing industry and the morality of book publishers by having Nanny Ogg bilked over a publishing deal, in which her payment for a best-seller is the usual gratis author's copy of the book and nothing else. Granny Weatherwax plays catch-up on her friend's behalf and demonstrates that a publisher's worst nightmare is a cheated witch. They leave the offices with an advance payment of five thousand dollars.
* Sci-fi author Philip José Farmer, in his Literature/{{Riverworld}} series where all the Earth's population is resurrected into a wholly unexpected afterlife, has the character who is his MartyStu in the book (legitimate, as we are ''all'' characters on the Riverworld) meet a publisher who once cheated him. Near-lethal vengeance is administered. The publisher is given the name Sharko.

[[folder:Newspaper Comics]]
* A variation occurred in ''ComicStrip/PearlsBeforeSwine'': Stephan Pastis has often credited ''{{ComicStrip/Dilbert}}'' creator Scott Adams with getting him into the syndicated cartooning world. That didn't stop him from making a storyline where Adams is portrayed as an Elvis caricature that ends up dying of a drug overdose in a toilet off-panel.
** Pastis has mocked his syndicate several times as well.
** To say nothing of the many InUniverse examples where Pastis' '''own''' characters (particularly Rat) have insulted him and the comic itself.
* Garry Trudeau, creator of ''ComicStrip/{{Doonesbury}}'', has slapped at his employer several times for making him submit strips six weeks in advance, with characters saying things along the lines of "even though the election happened last week, we don't know who won because this strip was submitted six weeks ago."
* Bill Waterson did this subtly a few times during his long fight to keep his syndicate from licensing ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes'', something that he did ''not'' want, unlike most cartoonists. For example, in one strip, the first panel has Calvin screaming, "I stand firm in my belief of what's right! I refuse to compromise my principles!" In the second panel, his angry mother is coming after him; in the last, he's in the bathtub, and says, "I don't ''need'' to compromise my principles, because they don't have the slightest bearing on what happens to me anyway."
* Berkley Breathed, creator of ''ComicStrip/BloomCounty'', loved this Trope:
** One arc had Milo having nightmares about being a syndicated cartoonist, where he was forced to draw cartoons in a dungeon where a sadistic editor-slash-torturer whipped and racked him for grammar mistakes and drawing cartoons that weren't funny. (As a MythologyGag, [[ComicStrip/{{Doonesbury}} Garry Trudeau]] - whose strip was on hiatus - was in the dungeon as well.)
** Also numerous highly-unflattering depictions of newspaper operators. The editor of the ''Bloom Picayune'' was offended that Milo would even consider bumping his [[StrawmanNewsMedia Jack Kemp adultery rumor story]] [[WorstNewsJudgmentEver to page two]] in order to cover an oncoming AlienInvasion.
** Breathed went so far as to introduce a character into to serve this purpose, W. A. Thornhump III, the fictional CEO of ''Bloom County Industries''. Thornhump was a CorruptCorporateExecutive who represented not only the perceived hypocrisy of money-grubbing corporate America, but also the unreasonable demands of the cartoon syndicate bosses. One example of this hypocrisy occurs in a Sunday strip that showed the results of drug tests of employees of the cartoons and even Breathed himself, who Thornhump [[DisproportionateRetribution thinks should be executed]] because the drug test revealed that he ate "one marijuana brownie six years ago." Thornhump's own test reveals that he is a serious alcoholic (driven home when Opus appears with his six-martini lunch) but declares him to be "drug free." He also used whatever "gimmicks" he could put into the strip to make a quick buck or increase ratings, regardless of legal, moral, or ethical issues, even going so low as to schedule a field trip to the "Acme Stewardess Academy" during a "Nudeness Week" in the strip.
* As an opening gag to one of the ''ComicStrip/{{Garfield}}'' strip collections, the publisher ran a "headline" proclaiming "Jim Davis a Fraud!" The exposé "revealed" that Garfield himself had been drawing the strip from the beginning and allowing Davis to take all the credit. The accompanying illustration showed Garfield sitting at a desk and drawing a cartoon of Davis in the trademark ''Garfield'' style.

* In Creator/SternPinball's ''Pinball/LordOfTheRings,'' an EasterEgg replaces the "Bash the Balrog" mode with "Bash Gary", a reference to company president Gary Stern.

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* When ODB declared herself the best wrestler in the Ohio Valley and [[StartMyOwn created her own]] OVW Women's title belt, she claimed to have won it during an event in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. This was a TakeThat to Wrestling/BuddyRogers "winning" the Wrestling/WorldWrestlingFederation heavyweight title in an imaginary tournament supposedly held in Brazil. What set this apart from every other company who mocked WWF/E for this was that WWF/E covered 30% of OVW's operating expenses and was using the company as a developmental program.
* WWE itself has spent the past two decades greenlighting stories in which Chairman Vince [=McMahon=] and various other authority figures are bitterly criticized, mocked, and made to look like fools - usually with those authority figures' full complicity. This arguably reached its peak with the "pipebomb" of the summer of 2011, when Wrestling/CMPunk was made to appear to have gone off-script with his live TV rant, even though he really hadn't.

[[folder:Religion and Mythology]]
* In the [[Literature/TheBible Gospel of John]], when Philip asks Nathaniel to meet Jesus for the first time, Nathaniel cynically asks if anything good can come from Nazareth, but comes with Philip anyway. When Nathaniel arrives, Jesus says, "Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom there is no deceit!"[[note]]Part of the joke here is that Jacob's name roughly means "one who is full of guile." Thus, Jesus is essentially sarcastically saying, "Finally, a descendant of Jacob who speaks the truth."[[/note]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=look+at+me%2C+i%27m+the+dci Look at Me, I'm the DCI]], from ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'', is a card from the Unglued joke set that lampoons the DCI (the official tournament organization) and its "rigorous decision-making process" when it decides which cards to ban.

[[folder:Theme Parks]]
* An overlap with ShamelessSelfPromotion and SelfDeprecation in ''Ride/TheSimpsonsRide'' at Creator/{{Universal}} [[Ride/UniversalStudios parks]]. At one point, the ride train crashes through a billboard reading "SEND MONEY TO UNIVERSAL STUDIOS."
* The team of snarkers at the Ride/DisneyThemeParks' ''Ride/JungleCruise'', when not poking fun at themselves and their ride, will occasionally take shots at the rest of the park.
-->Off to the right of the boat, you can see what we call the ''Ride/IndianaJonesAdventure and the Temple of the [[RightOnQueue Four-Hour Line]]''.
-->I wonder where this cave comes out... well, we're in Disney World, so probably a gift shop.
** Similarly, when Disneyland "updated" [[note]] made Tomorrowland look deliberately old-fashioned in order to escape further {{Zeerust}} [[/note]] Tomorrowland in the late 1990s, they also created a short tour film narrated by their new robot mascot "Tom Morrow," who mocked the old Tomorrowland for its overly whimsical predictions of the future.

[[folder:TV Tropes Wiki]]
* We tend to do this a lot with Tropers/TheAdvertisementServer.

* WebComic example: Most of the jokes in ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'', especially in the first 200 or so comics, are at the expense of ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' or its publisher, Creator/WizardsOfTheCoast. Rich Burlew, the author, is a freelance game designer who mostly works for Wizards on D&D-related projects. An early strip based on Wizards' slightly bizarre copyright policy is actually titled [[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0032.html Biting the Hand That Feeds Me]].
** The ''OOTS'' strip in the last three issues of ''Magazine/{{Dragon}}'' magazine had the Order discover the dragon from the cover of issue 1, whose subsequent career mirrored that of the magazine itself. The second of these strips was titled Claw/Claw/Bite The Hand That Feeds Me (that being how a dragon's mundane attacks are listed in the first two or three editions of the game, for those who don't happen to know).

-> [[SelfDemonstratingArticle Oh look, another "witty" self-demonstrating]] [[TheStinger stinger]] to show that Wiki/TVTropes is dumber--more informal!-- than [[Wiki/{{Wikipedia}} The Other Wiki]]. [[FlatJoy Whoopty dingle]] [[PrecisionFStrike fucking]] [[FlatJoy Doo]].