[[quoteright:344:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/poster_cast_7712.png]]

''Dumbing of Age'' is a SliceOfLife {{webcomic}} by David Willis, set at Indiana University and revolving around the freshman class of [[WebcomicTime whatever year this is.]] Though it has LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters, its primary focus is on Joyce Brown, a naive fundamentalist Christian with a friendly demeanor and a rigid but upbeat outlook on life, and her unlikely best friend Dorothy Keener, an ambitious atheist and law student. Also along for the ride are Joyce's roommate, a snarky, nigh-misanthropic sophomore named Sarah Clinton, and their next-door neighbors, alcoholic and wannabe-AlphaBitch Jennifer "Billie" Billingsworth and BookDumb, BadAss-incarnate Sal Walkerton. And then there's local [[SuperHero vigilante]] [[BadassNormal Amazi-Girl]], secretly fellow freshman Amber O'Malley, who uses the alter-ego to compartmentalize her anger issues. All these people have assorted friends and relations, any of whom are capable of taking center-stage at any time--it's probably a good idea to take a look at the [[Characters/DumbingOfAge character sheet]] to get a sense of the sheer scope of the work.

The comic is a UltimateUniverse counterpart to Willis' [[Webcomic/{{Walkyverse}} other comics]], playing fast and loose with the personal histories of the characters, stripping out the science-fiction elements altogether, and leading to characters co-existing and forming relationships when they'd barely met in the other 'verse (or vice versa.) In a sense it could be said to be a reboot of ''Roomies!'' specifically, given the college focus, but with characters from everything up through ''Webcomic/{{Shortpacked}}'' included.

[[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/01-move-in-day/home/ First page can be found here.]]

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!!This webcomic contains examples of:

* {{Adorkable}}:
** Joyce.
** Dina too.
** Danny has his moments.
** Billie tries '''way''' too hard and every so often gives hints that she has [[ClosetGeek certain hobbies]]...
* AllWomenLoveShoes:
** Referenced by Walky. He loses his shoes, so Dorothy tells him to just wear another pair. Walky responds that he only owns one pair of shoes because he's a man, and begins a quest to find a man who is girly enough to actually own multiple pairs of shoes so he can borrow a pair.
---> '''Danny:''' [[AnswerCut Hmm. If I suspend a tension bar here, I could hang a bedskirt.]]
** Turns out Walky is the only one who subscribes to this theory. A rather grumpy and hungover Joe bluntly puts him in his place [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/01-if-the-shoes-split/manhood/ here]].
* AlphaBitch: Billie's High School persona. [[BreakTheHaughty Unfortunately, social status does not automatically transfer to college.]] Although how popular she really was is a bit open to interpretation given [[SmallNameBigEgo her personality]] and how her high school friends haven't been seen or talked to at all since the strip began.
** She outright calls herself one in [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/03-answers-in-hennessy/alpha-bitch/ this strip]].
* AltText: Willis discovered how to do this on February 14th, 2013.
--> what i can add HOVERTEXT???
* AlternateUniverse: The basic premise is that none of the characters got abducted like they did in IW. Character ages are different as well, with some who were older in the Main Verse (like Ethan) being college freshmen while others such as Leslie and Robin are closer to their original ages.
* AluminiumChristmasTrees: ''Hymmel the Humming Hymnal'' is based on the very real ''Psalty the Singing Songbook''. Cue [=YouTube=] comments expressing disbelief that it actually exists (that and "Oh God, what did I just watch?")
* AmbiguousDisorder:
** Dina. Many readers have speculated whether she has Aspergers Syndrome given her obsessive interest in dinosaurs, social problems, frequent lack of expression, and various other traits. David Willis has gone on record saying that she has not been [[ShrugOfGod diagnosed with anything]].
** Ruth shows many of the traits of Anti-Social Personality Disorder. Her low threshold for frustration, violence, impulsiveness, criminal behavior (assault, drinking, etc.), abusive behavior towards Billie (someone she ''likes'' ), etc. are all major red flags. Not to mention it's been implied she may have grown up in an abusive family...
* AmbiguouslyBi:
** Joyce's various [[HoYay accidental innuendos]] (e.g. [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/buddies/ "shower buddies"]]) have become kind of a recurring joke. Not to mention her intense jealousy when Walky started [[ClingyJealousGirl spending time with Dorothy]] and her fixation on brushing Sal's [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/comics/2012-01-19-wig.png "luxurious chocolate river of hair."]]
** Walky even teases her when he sees her [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-3/01-if-the-shoes-split/nemesis/ frowning]] as Dorothy kisses him.
** Danny's interactions with Ethan have been surprisingly flirty and a few readers have pointed out Danny has never been confirmed to be heterosexual. When Amber asked him if he was closeted, since her gaydar was terrible, he confirmed he liked girls but not that he was straight. He's basically confirmed as bisexual in [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/04-the-whiteboard-dong-bandit/thoughts/ this strip.]]
* AmbiguouslyBrown: Walky and Sal. Joyce originally thinks they're Native American (though Walky's nickname was part of that), and doesn't really have enough experience to know any more. Eventually lampshaded:
-->'''Joyce:''' I...I've been trying to determine if it's rude to ask what, um, ''flavor'' of human you two are.\\
'''Walky:''' Well, my ''sister'' is black, but ''I'm'' generically beige.
* AmnesiacDissonance: When under the influence of a date-rape drug, Joyce defends herself, cutting her hand in the process. When she wakes up the next day...
-->'''Sarah:''' You smashed a cup in a boy's face.\\
'''Joyce:''' ... Th-that doesn't sound like me.
* ArentYouGoingToRavishMe: Non sexual variant with Danny, who tries to get a stereotypical jock to attack him [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/03-the-first-step-towards-recovery/insulted/ by saying he's gay]] to draw out Amazi-Girl only for the jock, who is in fact [[HairOfGoldHeartOfGold Tony]], to be insulted that Danny would think he'd do such a thing.
* AscendedExtra:
** Ryan, who appeared in a grand total of four strips back in ''Roomies! Redux'' as part of a Ruth-flashback subplot, has a much bigger role here, having gone from mild {{Jerkass}} to full-blown rapist.
** Sierra has gone from "Tootsi," the least developed of the already heavily objectified Squad 48 with a grand total of one throwaway line to, well, a human, with a hippie persona to explain some fetishistic traits from the original.
** Dana appeared a grand total of twice in the original universe, but here she's a key plot point in Sarah's backstory.
** Dorothy definitely qualifies. Pretty much all of the pre-launch promotional material for ''Dumbing of Age'' listed the two leads as Joyce and ''Sarah'', with Dorothy having been included for the sole purpose of giving Danny a girlfriend to break up at the beginning of the strip. Within the first year, Willis had discovered that Sarah's asocial nature made her difficult to build plots around and that he actually found Dorothy interesting. By the time the first book came out "[[WunzaPlot one's a fundamentalist, the other's an atheist, they attend college]]" had become the stock description of the comic for book blurbs and fundraising sites, with Sarah having become a RecurringCharacter.
* AuthorAppeal:
** Willis has shown that he likes the idea of {{Alternate Universe}}s.
** Given how Billie and Amber are drawn it's pretty obvious Willis likes curvy (if not flat out [[BigBeautifulWomen chubby]]) women and [[MegaNekko girls with glasses.]] Also, [[YouthfulFreckles freckles]], given the designs for Dorothy and Ruth.
* UsefulNotes/TheBechdelTest: The title of [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/category/comic/book-1/04-the-bechdel-test/ Chapter 4]], which has extensive ConversationalTroping about the strip's ability to pass the test.
* BaitAndSwitchComment: Joyce's [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/06-strange-beerfellows/sin/ surprisingly measured stance]] on homosexuality.
-->'''Joyce''': [Homosexuality]'s no worse than lying.\\
'''[[JerkAss Mike]]''': So how do you feel about lying?\\
'''Joyce: [[BlackSpeech I hate it]]'''
* BeautifulAllAlong: Walky is a rare male example, as Joyce is genuinely surprised to see how [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/03-the-first-step-towards-recovery/caramel-2/ "sculpted" he is underneath his hoody.]]
* BehindTheBlack: [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/03-answers-in-hennessy/to-navigate/ Averted]] much to Walky's and Joe's surprise and Joyce's traumatization.
* BerserkButton:
** Joyce does ''not'' like guys who think of nothing but sex.
** Dina pulls out a proper DeathGlare when Joyce dismisses evolution offhandedly. Joyce and Ethan are ''terrified'' by [[OOCIsSeriousBusiness sweet, tiny, cripplingly-shy Dina getting angry.]]
** Meta. Willis became... annoyed at the running gag in the comments of naming every female ''but'' Amber as the identity of Amazi-Girl, for unknown reasons, and when it was explicity revealed in the comic Amber was AG, he made a proclamation that the joke was over, dead, and repeating it would lead to a ban. Also, people constantly accusing him of making Joyce a strawman fundamentalist, despite repeatedly stating she's based on him at that age, and is in fact way more socially adjusted than he was.
* BigDamnHeroes: [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/bat/ Here]], when [[spoiler:Sarah saves Joyce from {{rape|AsDrama}}]].
--> '''Joyce''': [[spoiler:S-Sarah]], you came to save me! [...] God sent you after me!\\
[[spoiler: '''Sarah''']]: Yeah, the ''[[CurbStompBattle Old Testament]]'' God.
* [[GayConservative Bi Conservative:]] In an ironic twist, [[Webcomic/{{Shortpacked}} Robin DeSanto]] is heavily implied to be more like [[ArchEnemy Sarah Palin]] in this universe.
* BiTheWay:
** Billie fawns over and [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/03-the-first-step-towards-recovery/unimpressed/ even attempts to make out with]] [[spoiler: Sal]] while drunk, and only days after Walky had joked about the possibility. Not to mention her own confusion over her apparent attraction to [[spoiler: Ruth]] even after [[spoiler: attempting to report her for bullying and basically sexually harassing her]].
** [[ManChild Robin]] is attracted to [[LipstickLesbian Leslie]] in this canon too, despite being a [[GayConservative Republican Congresswoman]] running on a "family values" platform. [[SiblingRivalry Roz]] is very aware of this and seems to be planning something...
** Roz herself, seemingly at least partly as [[EthicalSlut a matter of principle]].
** Danny, which even he may not have been aware of [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/04-the-whiteboard-dong-bandit/thoughts/ until this strip.]]
* BigNo: Walky, when Dorothy sacrifices an interview with Danny about Amazi-Girl to borrow some shoes for Walky:
-->'''Walky:''' ... Okay, maybe the stakes aren't ''quite'' that high.
* BrattyTeenageDaughter: Can be inferred given that Billie mentions her father tries to buy her affection as well as her whole persona. Ditto for Raidah and her friends given their behavior as well as the fact that their parents are all lawyers.
* BreakTheCutie:
** Joyce is bordering on this now given that she was [[spoiler: drugged and almost raped]] and is slowly having her whole sheltered, fundamentalist upbringing challenged. Whether she will snap at some point remains to be seen.
** Sarah obviously became a much more guarded and bitter person after her experience with Dana and her friends.
* BreakTheHaughty:
** Billie was a popular cheerleader and member of the school newspaper in high school but is gradually realizing none of that matters in college. So far she's struggled with problems such as alcoholism, loneliness, sexual identity issues and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking weight gain.]]
** This trope hits hard particularly in situations when she expects to coast by. When she actually puts some effort into it, she does better. For example, recovering her cheerleader uniform and getting Ruth to back off.
** To a much lesser degree, Sarah is being subjected to this as well; she's had to swallow her pride a few times over the course of the strip.
* BrickJoke:
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/02-uphill-from-here/uphill/ In chapter 2]], Mike puts his books in Walky's bag without him noticing. [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/04-the-bechdel-test/backpack/ Two chapters later]], Walky wonders how his books multiplied.
** Walky teases Billie about hooking up with Sal [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-2/01-pajama-jeans/gross/ after she defensively tells Joyce that she'd "sooner do his sister" than him.]] [[WebcomicTime Days later Billie gets drunk and hits on Sal]] (though this is verging on a [[FunnyAneurysmMoment Funny Aneurysm moment]] given her [[DudeNotFunny obviously worsening alcoholism]]).
** An inter-continuity joke from ''ItsWalky''. Remember Walky's [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/02-uphill-from-here/throw/ initial reaction to Dorothy]]? [[http://www.itswalky.com/d/20000809.html It's not the first time he's thought that would work]].
** Joyce [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/02-i-was-a-teenage-churchmouse/mandangle/ googled what a "strap-on" was]].
** Joyce [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/03-up-all-night-to-get-vengeance/share-2/ finds one of Sarah's "toys"]].
* BrilliantButLazy: Walky exhibits traits of this, especially due to the fact that he has said that he has been "very good at gettin' "A"s without havin' to do anything."
* BroadStrokes: Willis stated at Anime Fest 2010 (where the comic was unveiled) that he plans to write the characters so that they are up to date with the other continuities. For example, Joyce starts off with the same level of maturity she had gained at the end of IW (thanks to not having been abducted and actually having a friend her own age), and Ethan came out some time in high school. This is so that he doesn't have to cover the same character arcs that people have already read.
* ButtMonkey:
** Life seems to be developing a bit of a habit of kicking Danny in the balls.
** Billie has kind of supplanted him lately and doesn't show any signs of having hit rock bottom yet.
* TheCameo:
** Apparently {{Archie|Comics}} is not above attending college parties (though WordOfGod is that the resemblance is a coincidence).
** An early and shortlived meme among readers was to find background characters who look like [[Franchise/ScoobyDoo Shaggy.]]
** [[Series/{{Community}} Magnitude]] too, he's even in the character tags!
* CharacterBlog:
** Apparently, any "official" Twitter feeds from Walkyverse characters are from this version of them.
** Could potentially date the story as the entries clearly reference current events/pop culture, some of which is already passed by now. (e.g. Joyce replying to a question about whether she would vote for Obama in the 2012 election). ComicBookTime to the rescue?
* CharacterDevelopment: Even though it's early on and pacing is slow, we've seen quite a bit:
** Sarah swallowed her pride and apologized to Raidah for punching her in their altercation after Joyce advised her to. Raidah was clearly surprised and suspicious, but decided she sounded genuine. Both sides sound calmer and more civil now if not exactly friends.
** While Billie is still in denial about her drinking, she has realized she's no longer at the top of the social pyramid. Not to mention how out of shape she is. And after both [[spoiler: kissing Sal while drunk]] and [[spoiler: being kissed by Ruth]] she's really beginning to question her sexuality.
** Joyce might be perky and still a caricature of fundamentalists. But she is genuinely tolerant of others and has taken steps towards self improvement. She's formed friendships with people very unlike her (Dorothy, Sarah, etc.), tried dating and is clearly dealing with the trauma of having [[spoiler: nearly been raped by Ryan]].
** Dina is making an effort to be more social lately (in her own [[AmbiguousDisorder Aspergers' like way]]) and is clearly bothered by how other people perceive/treat her.
* ClingyJealousGirl: Joyce started [[HoYay having overtones of this]] when Dorothy began dating Walky, something that has not gone [[ShipTease unnoticed by the fans]]. Or [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/04-time-keeps-on-slippin/halfway/ by Walky]].
* CleavageWindow: Amazi-Girl [[AvertedTrope does not]] have one, to [[YouNeedToGetLaid Daisy]]'s extreme disappointment.
* ClosetGeek: For all her hatred of [[CatchPhrase NERDS]] Billie uses a lot of phrases like [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/05-saturdays-all-right-for-slighting/size/ "life-force"]] in casual conversation...
* CloudCuckoolander:
** Walky.
** Joyce.
** Dina, due to having NoSocialSkills.
** Amber is shown to have been this in flashbacks.
* ComedicSociopathy: About half the main cast could get brought in on at least a misdemeanor charge, if you think about it.
* ComicBookTime: Willis refers to this by name in the series FAQ. The result: WebcomicTime (it's shaping up to be a week equals a year, roughly) with a sliding timescale (what year said semester is in changes to avoid ''Dumbing'' from, in Willis's words, "slowly becoming a period piece.")
* ComingOutStory:
** Ruth [[spoiler: kissed Billie after months of foreshadowing and Tsundere-type behavior. Of course, this is deconstructed since even with all her issues Billie reacts with anger and confusion like a normal person would as opposed to someone in a bad harem anime.]]
** Billie drunkenly hit on Sal earlier in the comic. And [[spoiler: both Ruth '''and''' Daisy have kissed her so far.]]
** We appear to be on the tail end of Ethan's, as Amber mentions spending the summer helping him deal with his family's reactions. And now Ethan is in a relationship with Joyce...
* ContinuityReboot: Though it doesn't null out the previous continuity, it just [[MultiVerse throws one more on the pile]].
* CurbStompBattle:
** Ruth utterly ''owns'' Billie [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/01-move-in-day/pun/ here]], tossing her over her head and into a chair. And remember, this is a girl who gave ''Sal'' trouble in ''IW!'', so Ruth must have some serious fighting chops.
** Later on, [[spoiler: Amazi-Girl]] chases off the jocks that were beating up Danny with just a kick and a punch.
* DarkAndTroubledPast:
** Sarah has some history in college.
** Sal practically ''owns'' this trope even though she wasn't swapped this time.
** Ruth has shown signs of this too if her phone conversations and crushed reaction after are any indication. [[spoiler: Not to mention the disastrous results of her Tsundere behavior around Billie, which further suggests she may have had an abusive home life.]]
*** It turns out that [[spoiler: her parents were killed by a drunk driver, and her attempt to cure her depression by drinking ironically made her more depressed and even more of an alcoholic]]
** Joe might count - his parents are divorced at the very least (and he mentions that they "yell a lot" when Joyce suggests a ParentTrapPlot), though there hasn't been any elaboration yet.
** Amber's may be the worst. Having an emotionally abusive father who beat her mother. Her parents divorced and she was left alone a lot because her mother was busy working. And at thirteen, she could only watch while Sal took Ethan hostage and held a knife to his throat. [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/01-the-only-dope-for-me-is-you/freezeup/ Negative effects]] [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/01-the-only-dope-for-me-is-you/down/ have]] [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/01-the-only-dope-for-me-is-you/under/ been shown]].
* DeathBySex: Conversed [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/02-i-was-a-teenage-churchmouse/intent/ here.]]
* DefrostingIceQueen: Sarah is becoming a lot more open and less controlling as a result of hanging around with Joyce.
* DemotedToExtra: With the cast of most of the Walkyverse appearing, certain characters are pushed to the periphery. Robin, Leslie and Jacob are probably the most obvious examples.
* DescriptionCut:
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/01-move-in-day/pizza/ Here]].
** [[DiscussedTrope Discussed]] [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-3/01-if-the-shoes-split/jumpcut/ here.]]
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/04-just-hangin-out-with-my-family/horizons/ And again.]]
* DistractedByTheSexy: Poor Daisy is [[YouNeedToGetLaid so pent-up]] that [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/05-media-rumble/chestwindow/ she distracts]] ''herself'' with the thought of a superheroine with a CleavageWindow.
-->'''Daisy''': God, a chest window woulda... [[LastSecondWordSwap made a great front page splash image]].
* DoesNotLikeShoes: Sierra, who has apparently been barefoot since sixth grade (that's her best guess at least). [[UnusuallyUninterestingSight It took a while for anyone to notice]], including the reader, since her feet were not shown until the characters noticed her shoelessness.
* DoubleStandardAbuseFemaleOnMale: Played straight, and then subverted -- Joyce hires resident {{Jerkass}} Mike to ''punch Joe in the face'' whenever he steps out of line, then joins in at the end of the night after Joe was distracted by the waitress wearing a {{Stripperiffic}} outfit. [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/04-the-bechdel-test/pray/ The next day]], he points out the {{Hypocrisy}} of a Christian paying someone to commit violence ''and'' joining in on said violence. Joyce is visibly shaken.
--> '''Joe''': Pray for ''me?'' Maybe I'll pray for ''you'' to learn it's ''not cool'' to ''punch people in the face!'' \\
''[{{beat}}]'' \\
'''Joyce''': But... but... guys can't ''actually'' get hurt by a girl. Guys are, like, ''[[MenAreTough strong]].''
* DysfunctionJunction: A lot of characters don't exactly have good parents. Walky has been coddled by his parents ([[spoiler: According to Sal, this is because he's whiter than her]]) and his maturity has suffered dearly while Sal had the exact opposite, Ethan's parents are very homophobic, Amber had an abusive dad, and Joyce's parents are fundamentalist Christians.
* EstablishingCharacterMoment: [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/04-the-bechdel-test/planned/ Roz]].
* EthicalSlut:
** Roz. She encourages safe sex and even insisted on putting a clause of politically correct language in her roommate agreement, but is also not above sabotaging her sister's political career because the two have opposing views.
** Joe, and he makes this crystal clear early on. (Turns out he's actually pretty heavy on the ethics too, to the point that his promiscuity appears to be his only character flaw.) For example, he's visibly shaken when Joyce freaks out at him after the (unrelated) incident at the party, and he nearly cries when Danny calls him a bad wingman.
* EvenTheGirlsWantHer: Sal seems to attract a lot of admirers.
* EvenEvilHasStandards: Char's [[GirlPosse friends]] aren't comfortable with her picking on Dina for being "retarded."
* EveryoneWentToSchoolTogether: A lot of the premise of [=DoA=] is "What if everyone in the WalkyVerse went to college together?", along with "What if no one got crazy powers from being abducted by aliens?"
* ExtremeMeleeRevenge: [[spoiler:Blaine made Amber's life miserable during most of her childhood. Taking Danny as an hostage in order to lure her out of the campus was the final straw.]]
* FallenPrincess: Billie is this trope, more or less.
* {{Fauxshadowing}}: The setup for Joyce (seeking a future husband) and Danny (plans to marry right after college) to hook up after Dorothy broke up with him. [[spoiler:Instead, ''Joe'' asks her out, and HilarityEnsues.]] Bonus points as a MythologyGag, since Joyce was Danny's semi-stalker in ''Webcomic/{{Roomies}}''
* FlippingTheTable: Amber does this to Ethan when she finds out he's still dating Joyce. She feels bad about it later.
* ForcefulKiss: [[spoiler: Ruth does this to Billie after being confronted about her Tsundere behavior. It backfires spectacularly.]]
* {{Foreshadowing}}: Early on, Joyce says she [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/sisters/ wished she had a sister]]. A few years down the line, [[spoiler: we learn her 'brother' Joshua is a closet trans woman.]]
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-01/06-yesterday-was-thursday/margaret Amber's reaction to seeing Sal]].
* FourthWallMailSlot: On Dorothy's [[CharacterBlog Character Twitter]], she [[http://twitter.com/DorothyKeener/status/276757326499819520 apparently]] [[https://twitter.com/DorothyKeener/status/276757446490484736 responds]] [[https://twitter.com/DorothyKeener/status/276757509325336577 to]] comments made on the discussion pages.
* TheFundamentalist: Joyce is a more sympathetic variety of this, although some characters like Mike are attempting to get her to re-examine her worldview.
* FunnyBackgroundEvent:
** Amazi-Girl can be seen beating up people [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/mark/ in this strip.]][[note]]It's a BrickJoke, too - that's one of the guys who beat up Danny earlier.[[/note]]
** The framed review on the wall of Galasso's Pizza headlined [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/03-men-are-from-beck-women-are-from-clark/olives/ "Mother Bear's crushed under Galasso's iron heel".]] (Mother Bear's Pizza is a popular IU student hangout in RealLife.)
* GambitRoulette: Mike pulls these off roughly once a year; something innocuous or friendly that turns out being the first step in a ''soul-crushing'' fall.
* {{Gaydar}}: Amber's is, by her own admission, way off. Sarah's [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/04-time-keeps-on-slippin/chromosome/ is a lot more accurate.]]
-->"I think you'll be safe, Joyce, so long as you don't have a Y chromosome."
* {{Gayngst}}:
** Ethan. He even angsts about the fact that he angsts so much.
** He is so starved for affection and uncomfortable with himself that he [[IncompatibleOrientation leads Joyce on]], to the frustration of [[WhatTheHellHero Amber, Mike, and Sarah]]. And even now after telling her the truth they're still in a relationship.. Because neither feels comfortable with their sexual feelings and Joyce misguidedly thinks she can help him avoid "temptation."
* GenreSavvy: Sarah can actually see the character's archetypes miles away, but her flaw is that she's been right so many times she's built a wall around herself so that she wouldn't need to make friends ever again.
* GibberishOfLove: Walky, whilst around Dorothy. At least for a while.
* GoMadFromTheRevelation: Billie's reaction when she realizes that, going by all the people she knows at college so far, [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/stall/ Joyce is her best friend.]] And then they get along pretty well from there.
* GoshDangItToHeck Joyce (obviously), and oddly enough, [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/help/ Sal]], apparently even when [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/freak/ provoked]].
* [[SheIsNotMyGirlfriend He's Not My Boyfriend:]] Billie gets pretty vocal when Ruth asks if Walky's her boyfriend.
* HateSink: Everything Amber's dad says makes him more and more punchable.
-->'''AltText:''' If I mention he's sitting in the handicapped parking space, does that make him too cartoonishly evil?
* HeManWomanHater: Walky initially responds to his attraction to Dorothy about as well as your average eight-year old would.
* HiccupHijinks: Joyce gives herself hiccups when Dorothy admits to being an atheist.
* HighSchoolAU: Technically college, but it mixes TheMenInBlack alien fighters from the previous continuity into an ordinary college setting.
* HollywoodAtheist: Both played straight and averted. Walky is [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/03-the-first-step-towards-recovery/caramel-2/ quite snarky and]] [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/06-strange-beerfellows/skywizard/ dismissive]] about Joyce's 'invisible sky wizard' in contrast to his original Walkyverse self. However Dorothy is non confrontational in her atheism, to the point of making friends with [[TheFundamentalist Joyce]], and is somewhat embarrassed by her boyfriend's behavior.
* HowTheMightyHaveFallen: Billie's life has been on a downhill spiral since high school ended, largely because of her alcoholism.
* IconicItem: Dina's hat.
* IJustWantToHaveFriends / IJustWantToBeLoved:
** These are Joyce's main motivations. One could argue that [[JadeColouredGlasses Sarah]] [[ShadowArchetype is repressing her desire to be loved.]]
** Billie is clearly desperate to meet new people, so far Joyce seems to be the only person she really feels comfortable hanging out with.
** Given how destroyed she sounded after receiving her phone call and the loss of her father, it appears Ruth could secretly be suffering from a case of this too.
* IncompatibleOrientation: Amber and Ethan. And now Joyce and Ethan. And possibly Ruth and Billie, though Ruth appears to be confused on that score.
* InferioritySuperiorityComplex: Billie seems to be suffering from a bad case of this lately.
* InformedJudaism: While Ethan and Joe have mentioned they're Jewish, neither one actually practices the faith, Ethasn even attending Christian church with Joyce.
* TheIngenue: Joyce at her worst, although she has been slowly growing out of this.
* InnocentBigot: Joyce frequently makes offensive remarks to non-Christians due to her extremely sheltered home-schooled upbringing. This is evidenced when she said she could "fix" Joe's judaism and expressed shock that atheists even existed. She also made racially insensitive comments such as calling her black room mate "a novelty." However as soon as she was called out on both these things she tried to improve. She was willing to ignore Dorothy's atheism and quickly became very close with her. She has also bonded with Sarah, particularly after [[spoiler: Sarah rescued her from a violent sexual predator]]. Considering how [[WebcomicTime little time has passed in comic]] her progress is already pretty remarkable although after [[spoiler: being questioned about Mike on homosexuality]] her [[spoiler: friendship with Ethan]] may be in trouble...
* InnocentInaccurate: Joyce keeps being told that [[StraightGay Ethan]] would [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/02-i-was-a-teenage-churchmouse/pagans/ enjoy a strap-on.]]
-->'''Joyce''': Everyone keeps ''saying'' that! Does anyone have one of these "strap-ons" I could borrow? I'm like a size six.
* InnocentInnuendo:
** Sarah [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/02-choosing-my-religion/holes-2/ overhears such a conversation]] concerning Sal possibly being Amazi-Girl.
** Taken to new levels [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/03-answers-in-hennessy/noises/ here, after Sarah]] mentions that [[ADateWithRosiePalms she has toys]].
--->'''Joyce''': Aw, c'mon Sarah! [[LesYay We can play with them together!]] You can shove 'em around if I get to make the ''noises''!\\
'''Sarah:''' [[BrainBleach STOP. TALKING.]]
** Joyce [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/03-answers-in-hennessy/other-guys/ really is a veritable fountain for these]].
--->'''Ruth''': Spending some quality ''alone time'' with your boyfriend?\\
'''Joyce''': Oh ''gosh'' no! Sometimes two other guys joined in!
** One [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/04-the-whiteboard-dong-bandit/earliest/ three and a half years in the making]] (though it is a bit of a dated term):
--->'''Joyce:''' If you look up "friend of Dorothy" in the dictionary, you'd find my picture!
* InsaneTrollLogic: Coupled with ItsQuietTooQuiet, [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/04-time-keeps-on-slippin/coward/ Ruth harassed Billie despite]] the latter not having done anything bad that week... so ''obviously'' that means she's up to something.
* InsultBackfire:
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/05-media-rumble/justice/ Sarah takes being called "pissy" as a compliment.]]
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/01-if-the-shoes-split/protection/ Ruth can't insult innocent little Joyce, can she?]]
* IsThatWhatTheyreCallingItNow: "[[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/02-choosing-my-religion/notsure/ Jour]][[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/02-choosing-my-religion/journalism/ nalism]]". [[spoiler: Subverted as Danny rejected Billie's sexual advances and never did have sex with her.]]
* JadeColoredGlasses:
** Sarah wears them all the time.
** Ruth is clearly '''very''' bitter after having left Canada, a "sore subject" for her.
* JerkJock: Danny is beaten up by Beef and several other Jocks, and then Amazigirl [[BigDamnHeroes saves him]]. Then it is subverted later on when Danny tries to get her attention by trying to get beaten up, and approaches Tony (another Jock), who is appalled that Danny wants him to beat him up for no reason (and even more appalled when Danny says that he's gay and therefore deserves to be beaten up). Tony then leaves in disgust.
* JerkAss:
** Mike, of course, although he appears to be trolling people for their own good in some cases
** Raidah et al are an interesting case where they are definitely [[JerkAss Jerk Asses]] (view their treatment of Dina), but they view their enemy Sarah as being a JerkAss instead of them, for getting their friend Dana, who was Sarah' roommate, expelled/withdrawn from school for (from their perspective) very selfish reasons-- Dana's depression/drug use was interfering with Sarah's ability to study, and thus Sarah's scholarship, so she called Dana's dad. Dana's issues were actually severe enough to legitimately need help from an authority figure, but since she [[StepfordSmiler managed to keep that hidden]] from Raidah ''et al'', Sarah's reaction seems like DisproportionateRetribution to them.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold / VitriolicBestBuds:
** Deconstructed. Sarah points out that she's saved Joyce's life, therefore making it kinda rude to think that Sarah hates her. Joyce responds by noting that, while she is ''extremely'' grateful, she doesn't just want a friend who will show how she cares in big, dramatic ways, but in little ways too.
** Likewise, while at first Mike seems more violent and cruel than his Shortpacked self over the course of the storyline it becomes apparent that he is taking a "tough love" approach to dealing with the problems of people like Walky, Dorothy and Ethan.
** Billie is not quite as much of a bitch as she would like to pretend she is.
* LastHetRomance: In this universe, Amber and Ethan dated in high school before he [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/04-the-bechdel-test/awkward/ realised he was gay during prom night.]]
* LighterAndSofter: Mike is very subdued compared to his Walkyverse counterpart and shows his "[[JerkassWithAHeartOfGold Heart of Gold]]" far more often. However, this is more likely a function of the Dumbiverse being ''sane'', whereas Walkyverse Mike specializes in ''very'' over-the-top acts of jackassery and is almost superhumanly apathetic to other people's pain.
* LikeAnOldMarriedCouple:
** Dorothy mentions that Billie and Walky argued like this. See RedEyesTakeWarning for how ''that'' comment was received.
** When Danny and Joe bicker over which of them is neglecting their friendship for girls, Jacob notes "You guys are a little married, huh?"
* LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters: A less extreme example, but it's used as an advertising point. One of the banner ads for the comic reads "Dumbing of Age has too many characters".
* [[spoiler: LovesMyAlterEgo]]: [[spoiler: Amber]], Danny, and Amazigirl. [[EpilepticTrees Possibly]]. See [[spoiler: TwoPersonLoveTriangle]]: below.
* LyricalDissonance: One of Joyce's favourite songs from ''Hymmel the Hymnal''; it sounds cute and cheery but [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/02-i-was-a-teenage-churchmouse/etchasketch/ has a pretty creepy message]].
* ManChild:
** Walky, to the extent that [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold Mike]] is trying to essentially force him to grow up and take a look at himself through [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/05-saturdays-all-right-for-slighting/unhappy/ creative methods.]]
** Robin is still very much a female example of this trope - she slept through her own election day.
* MaleGaze / FemaleGaze / EatingTheEyeCandy Pretty common throughout the strip. It is ''College'', after all.
* MasculineGirlFeminineBoy: Kind of an odd case of this in that Walky acts like a stereotypical ''little boy'', [[ParentingTheHusband but as a result doesn't behave how society thinks a ''Man'' should by being cute and submissive around Dorothy.]] Likewise, Dorothy isn't exactly butch but she's clearly the more serious, dominant and [[AManIsNotAVirgin sexually experienced one]] in the relationship.
* MoodWhiplash:
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/06-strange-beerfellows/tummy/ This strip]], which shifts from 'ha ha, Joyce is innocent' to [[DateRapeAverted Ryan]].
** A blazing [[spoiler: Ruth - Billie]] row that ends with both of them in tears is immediately followed by [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/01-the-only-dope-for-me-is-you/weeenus/ Walky being himself]]. And from there we shift to an exhausted Amber coming home from [[spoiler: a violent confrontation with Blaine.]]
* MoralityPet: Joyce is one for Sal and Sarah. [[AddedAlliterativeAppeal Funny how that works out.]]
* MythologyGag:
** Every now and again. For example, [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/02-uphill-from-here/why/ this strip]] shows Leslie joking that every female in Gender Studies is a lesbian. Readers who've read ''Shortpacked!'' know that she ''is'' a lesbian. She also displays a noticeable crush on Congresswoman Robin [=DeSanto=], the same dynamic she had with Robin in ''Webcomic/{{Shortpacked}}''.
** Walky mentioning that Sal is basically Batman (and is thus prone to disappearing). [[StealthHiBye Sal's usual method of entry]] (the window) was done as a Batman parody back in ''It's Walky!''.
** Sal's status as TheUnfavorite refers back to her being SwitchedAtBirth in ''It's Walky''.
** Sal's bikini has the yellow SEMME stripe.
** Mike's notes [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/02-uphill-from-here/notes/ here]].
** Walky tells Joyce that [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/fast/ they can't be friends.]] In the Walkyverse, they're an OfficialCouple.
** Not exactly a gag, but Joyce losing her memory when she was drugged parallels nicely with being mind wiped in the Walkyverse.
** Dorothy's favorite episode of the "Dexter and Monkey Master" cartoon is the one where Head Alien crashes a wedding, a reference to the final (uncompleted) storyline of ''Joyce and Walky!'' Willis lampshades this in a [[http://itswalky.tumblr.com/post/32651588328/pivitor-this-is-me-this-is-me-so-hard-it-isnt Tumblr post]].
** According to Mike's [[CharacterBlog Twitter]], his turn-ons are [[http://www.itswalky.com/d/20020511.html hats]], [[http://www.shortpacked.com/2005/comic/book-2-pulls-the-drama-tag/01-addicted/iloveyoumaggie/ strong tempers]], and [[RefugeInAudacity fuckable moms on the brink of death]], referencing Mike's romantic relationships in It's Walky! and Shortpacked!
** "[[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/06-strange-beerfellows/fifteen-2/ No, Joe isn't climbing out the windows to get into their rooms.]] [[http://www.bringbackroomies.com/comic/and-now/ That'd be ridiculous.]]"
** Joyce's discovery of [[spoiler:Walky in her old ''Hymmel the Humming Hymnal'' tape]] is supposed to parallel her meeting and then forgetting Walky as a toddler in the old 'verse.
** Dorothy's decision to [[spoiler:forget about Amazi-Girl's identity on the news]] by offhandedly referencing how ''Dexter and Monkey Master'' suffered a lacklustre PostScriptSeason and deciding to mindwipe everybody on the following season.
** Amber's early dedication to her laptop is akin to that of her early Webcomic/{{Shortpacked}} addiction to her computer. Only with several years advancement in technology meaning she isn't using Usenet, but playing online games.
* MyFriendsAndZoidberg
** When Dorothy claims her boyfriend followed her to college.
--->'''Danny:''' I didn't come here just for you... Joe's also here!
** Dina also tends to fill the role of the Zoidberg when the cast gathers together.
* NiceGuy:
** Ethan is a pretty decent person despite certain recent [[IncompatibleOrientation self-created drama in his life.]]
** Joe. Despite his reputation as promiscuous he never pushes anyone to do something they're not comfortable with and tries to be the best wingman and best friend he can to Danny. Of course neither of these things has exactly worked out for him lately...
* NightmareFace: [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/02-choosing-my-religion/church/ Joyce]] [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/02-choosing-my-religion/catholic/ is]] prone to these.
* NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished: Sarah contacted her former roommate's father when the poor girl suffered a mental breakdown after her mother died. Now Sarah is ostracised because people think she narced on her just for being a party girl.
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: [[spoiler:Amber, as Amazi-Girl, delivers one on her father after he took Danny hostage. The fight is entirely one-sided, with Amber beating him to a pulp.]]
* NoSocialSkills: Dina has this in spades, and [[IJustWantToBeNormal appears quite bothered by it lately.]]
* NotHelpingYourCase: Billie's not a troubled teen, and she'll punch anyone who says otherwise in the face!
* ObfuscatingStupidity: Dorothy thought Walky was a slacker until she found out he's so smart (he pulled a 4.0 in High School) he doesn't ''need'' to study.
* OddballDoppelganger: Dorothy and Joyce in a lot of ways. Despite the obvious differences in religion, upbringing and motivations they are surprisingly similar. They have the same child like interests (e.g. cartoons). They both have a tendency towards somewhat immature outbursts, in class in Dorothy's case and on a date in Joyce's. They both can be overly controlling when with boys. They both have expressed an interest in dating Walky in the original continuity. They both tend to [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/02-choosing-my-religion/sierra/ dress modestly]] and have relatively similar hairstyles (bangs). [[OddFriendship Not that strange, then, that the two would bond quickly.]]
* OddFriendship: All over the place. [[LoveMartyr Danny]] and [[TheCasanova Joe]] are a long-established pair. [[TheFundamentalist Joyce]] appears to collect these like flies, having begun developing friendships with [[TheSlacker Walky]], [[TheAlcoholic Billie]], [[TheSmartGuy Dorothy]], and even [[{{Jerkass}} Mike]]. (Joyce was TheHeart in the main {{Walkyverse}} continuity.)
* OldShame: InUniverse example. Walky appeared in an episode of ''Hymmel the Humming Hymnal'' as a kid (he apparently had a StageMom), dressed in a pink mouse costume. However he was young enough for him to not even remember doing it by the time of the comic. That is, until he saw himself on Joyce's tape of the show. Then the memories came back to him and he had this reaction.
* PaperThinDisguise: Unlike in ''Webcomic/{{Shortpacked}}'' people in this continuity don't seem to see through Amazi-Girl's disguise. (Granted, she actually operates at night or is moving too quickly for identification most of the time.)
* ParalyzingFearOfSexuality
** Joyce, Joyce, ''Joyce''. A dream sequence reveals a whole bundle of issues, some [[SexIsEvilAndIAmHorny underlying from her upbringing]], some [[DateRapeAverted caused by the events of the comic]].
** Walky, to a much lesser extent. Even directly giving him permission isn't enough.
--->'''Dorothy:''' My breasts, Walky. Touch them.\\
'''Walky:''' That was ''allowed?!''
** Later:
--->'''Walky:''' Seriously, I won't get in trouble for this?
** [[spoiler:This has now gone away to the point that he and Dorothy have actually had sex. Twice in the same day.]]
* ParentingTheHusband: Deconstructed. Although unmarried, Walky [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/05-saturdays-all-right-for-slighting/moms/ invokes this trope when breaking up with Dorothy]]. Despite getting back together this underlying issue in the relationship has not actually been resolved. Although it's clear that despite resenting how patronizing her behavior was, Walky [[ManChild doesn't really want to "grow up"]] and likes how dominant Dorothy is in the relationship. Likewise, while she has been embarrassed by him occasionally Dorothy definitely [[WeaknessTurnsHerOn enjoys Walky's juvenile and submissive personality on some level.]]
* PassThePopcorn:
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/03-answers-in-hennessy/slurp/ Sarah's reaction]] when [[TheFundamentalist Joyce]] and Dina get in an argument over evolution (viral, in this case).
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/04-the-whiteboard-dong-bandit/godpertunity/ Bilie's reaction]] when Joyce and Walky start scrapping like kids.
* PolarOppositeTwins: Sal and Walky, even though they weren't raised apart this time.
* PoliticallyIncorrectVillain: Though her group's "villain" status is arguable, Char definitely gets a JerkAss moment [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/05-saturdays-all-right-for-slighting/bullies/ here]].
-->'''Char:''' Yeah, and take your [[AmbiguousDisorder retarded kid]] with you!\\
'''Raidah:''' Char, ''no.'' Come on. Don't say ''that.''\\
'''Char:''' Oh, right. We're in public.\\
'''Raidah:''' Oh, right, we're in ''the universe.''
* ThePollyanna: Joyce. [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-2/01-pajama-jeans/rollcall/ It's even lampshaded in this comic.]]
* PunctuatedForEmphasis: [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/05-media-rumble/chestwindow/ Did. She have. A CHEST WINDOW?]]
* PunnyName: ''Dina Sar''uyama is obsessed with dinosaurs.
* RantInducingSlight: [[TheQuietOne Dina]] of all people delivers an epic one to [[TheFundamentalist Joyce]] for daring to say that [[AWizardDidIt god made dinosaurs]] all at the same time and that nobody knows if they had feathers or not in this [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/02-guess-whos-coming-to-galassos/feathers/ panel]]. Dina's rant is unleashed in the next panel.
* RealityIsUnrealistic:
** Many readers have commented in the comments section that they find Joyce unbelievable. Willis' response was that it seems impossible to be just that ingrained in the fundamentalist lifestyle unless you've actually lived it, like he once did.
** For reference, Joyce is ''considerably'' toned down from her Walkyverse counterpart's personality in ''Roomies!'', and the author has said that early version of Joyce reflects his own beliefs at the time more than Danny, the intended AuthorAvatar.
** It's also been said in the comments that Amber's "shyness" in the flashbacks is too exaggerated. Willis had much the same reaction there (with added "it's called ''anxiety disorder''").
* RedEyesTakeWarning:
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/04-the-bechdel-test/serious/ Joyce]], of all people.
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-2/01-pajama-jeans/something/ Billie gets in on this as well when asked if there's something between her and Walky.]]
* ReplacementGoldfish: Danny, after being dumped by Dorothy, starts hitting on Amber. [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/05-media-rumble/dude/ Played for laughs.]]
* RescueRomance: Danny seems to have developed a crush on Amazi-Girl after she saved him from bullies.
* RunningGag:
** Early on in the strip Walky develops a crush on Dorothy. Whenever she's present, he got a wide-eyed, lip-biting expression frozen on his face ([[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/05-media-rumble/onenote-2/ best seen here]], since he's wearing it in his only panel). The two are currently dating.
** Amber has [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/margaret/ a weird look on her face]] every time [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/badfriends/ she sees another girl with glasses.]] Probably referencing [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/03-men-are-from-beck-women-are-from-clark/glasses/ how she and Danny met.]]
* SarcasmFailure: Sal and Walky's [[SiblingRivalry sibling banter]] deteriorates from HypocriticalHeartwarming to genuinely hurtful when Sal manages to push Walky's BerserkButton.
* {{Sexiled}}: Walky and Dorothy kick Sierra out of the room for TheirFirstTime.
-->'''Walky and Dorothy:''' You need to leave.\\
'''Sierra:''' I need to leave?\\
'''Sierra:''' ''[outside]'' I needed to leave.
* SexIsEvilAndIAmHorny:
** Joyce, again.
** [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/02-choosing-my-religion/casualbang/ Danny, too.]] Joe calls him out on it.
* ShadowArchetype: A recurring element of the strip and often quite subtle. Examples:
** Sarah is outwardly Joyce's polar opposite given her self-proclaimed misanthropy and sour outlook. Yet she shares a strong connection to Joyce (her "little sis") and arguably is motivated [[IJustWantToBeLoved by many of the same things she is.]] She is even shown entering her dorm room excitedly much the same way that Joyce did, and also has faced something traumatic in her first semester. Further adding to this dynamic is Joyce's unexpected [[HiddenDepths ability to deliver clever comebacks and quips]] [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/05-saturdays-all-right-for-slighting/bonecity/ in recent comics.]]
** Billie likes to criticize Walky for being [[ManChild immature]], a slob and a geek. Yet for all his flaws Walky easily outperforms her academically and clearly has adjusted much better to college than she has. He also has a roommate who is actively trying to help him, whereas Sal seemed to actively avoid Billie even before Billie hit on her. Given that Billie is not mature enough to get past high school or admit her alcoholism (or other problems) and [[ClosetGeek uses phrases like "life-force" or "dracula" routinely in conversations]] it could be said that what annoys her about Walky is really [[YouAreWhatYouHate what she hates about herself]]. Additionally, despite his poor diet Walky is [[BigEater in excellent shape]] whereas Billie has [[WeightWoe put on weight in college]]...
** Dorothy and Walky. Walky can be overly complacent, sloppy and childish at times. Dorothy can be overly ambitious, perfectionist and preoccupied with what others think of her (which is in itself [[http://bible.cc/1_corinthians/13-11.htm somewhat childish]]). Both bond over cartoons, both are surprised by how similarly gifted they are, and both struggle to make the right compromises in their relationship.
* ShipperOnDeck: [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-2/01-pajama-jeans/gross/ Joyce ships Walky/Billie.]] And in the same one, Walky seems to ship Billie/Sal.
* ShipTease: Many of the Walkyverse's canon couples or relationships that happened over the course of the comic are teased in the comic, though aside from Walky and Dorothy none of them have gone past "teasing" yet.
* ShoutOut:
** Sal's outfits in [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/01-move-in-day/schoolgirl/ this strip]] look an awful lot like the school uniforms in ''{{Webcomic/Avalon}}'', which ''It's Walky!'' did a little crossover with during the "Anomalie" storyline.
** Sort of shout out [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-2/01-pajama-jeans/vouch/ by Walky]] - Willis originated the joke about [[QuestionableContent Jeph Jacques]] having 'Butts Disease', which concludes with the ability to only draw butts.
** When Mike and Ethan [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/02-uphill-from-here/drag/ drag Amber out of her dorm room]], she shouts the following.
--->'''Amber:''' [[Series/TheTwilightZone It's not fair! There was]] ''[[Series/TheTwilightZone time]]'' [[Series/TheTwilightZone now! There was]] ''[[Series/TheTwilightZone all the time I needed!]]'' [[Series/TheTwilightZone It's not faiiiiiir!]]
** When Joyce starts [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2014/comic/book-4/01-the-only-dope-for-me-is-you/manic-2/ acting especially manic]], the AltText says she's "[[http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Recap/CommunityS1E19BeginnerPottery Goldbluming]]".
* ShowWithinAShow: The "Dexter and Monkey Master" comic book series and spin-off cartoon, featuring the science-fictional elements from the core Walkyverse.
* ShuttingUpNow: Joyce [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/02-choosing-my-religion/holes-2/ thanks someone for interrupting her]] when she got into a DiggingYourselfDeeper situation.
* ShutUpHannibal:
** Sarah gets taken down several notches when Joyce replies to her lecture about the dangers of college parties. [[spoiler:Unfortunately, Sarah was right about that [[RapeAsDrama particular party.]]]]
--->'''Joyce:''' Ever since I've got here, you've disapproved of everything I've been done. What I believe, who I hang out with! But every single time you're wrong! Look at me, I'm just a homeschooled girl. I've made friends. You're... still alone.
** She has a less harsh comeback several strips later, when during another argument Sarah points out that she was right about the college party and that she saved Joyce. Joyce concedes the point, but in turn points out that Sarah's big, dramatic gestures to show that she cares aren't much good if she's not going to combine them with smaller-scale gestures as well.
* ShutUpKiss: [[spoiler: Painfully deconstructed. Ruth attempts this on Billie right as she's being confronted about how hurtful and confusing her (abusive and antisocial) Tsundere behavior is. And it backfires on her so badly that Billie actually tries reporting her to someone. What works in the world of harem Anime doesn't go over well in real life at all.]]
* SiblingRivalry:
** Sal really seems to resent Walky for being the favorite child.
** Roz & Robin.
* SiblingYinYang: Sal and Walky, again. No one seems to have even noticed they're twins.
* SinkOrSwimMentor[=/=]StealthMentor: This seems to be Mike's ''modus operandi'' in this universe; most of his more dickish behaviour has seemed to be directed at forcing the character it's being aimed at to sort their lives out or at least come to some kind of realization about themselves, rather than just him being a straight-up {{Jerkass}}.
* SlapSlapKiss: [[spoiler:Upon Billie demanding that Ruth tell her what she wants from Billie, Ruth first punches her (in one strip) and then kisses her (in the next strip). Incidentally, this caused a brief server meltdown.]]
** The same goes for Sal and [[spoiler: Jason, the math TA]].
* SmallNameBigEgo: Billie was the editor of her high school newspaper, although she admittedly did no work on it, getting the title due to popularity and then using it only as social currency (even ''Walky'' knew more about Journalism than she does) -- she's rather surprised to discover that [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/04-the-bechdel-test/pyle/ this doesn't give her a free pass to the student paper at her college]].
* SnarkBall: Gets passed around quite a bit, as one would expect from a David Willis work. Any character can be appropriately snarky given the right situation and motivation.
* SparedByTheAdaptation: WordOfGod says Dina will not die in this continuity. Also, Galasso's wife Pamela is alive and well, premiering shortly after a storyline in ''Shortpacked'' about how she died.
* StripBuffer: One that covers over three months.
* SureLetsGoWithThat: [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/09/12/reputation/ "Yes. We say that to everybody."]]
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial:
--> '''Billie''': Shut up and take this. [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-2/01-pajama-jeans/owe/ I didn't steal it from the back of a pickup truck in the parking lot.]]
* TakeThat: At least two at ''Series/{{Community}}'' season four.
* ThatMakesMeFeelAngry: Joyce [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/02-uphill-from-here/fun/ says as much]] to Walky for his criticizing her MRSDegree.
* ThisIsNotThatTrope: Dorothy trying to tell Joyce what sex is like.
-->'''Dorothy''': You've seen season four of ''JustForFun/DexterAndMonkeyMaster'', right? The ''Ultra-Car'' crossover episode where she and Monkey-Master get their brains merged?\\
'''Joyce''': Sex is like that?\\
'''Dorothy''': ...Not even remotely.
* TimeSkip: One covering all of four days.
* ToiletHumor: Done in a {{flashback}} [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/03-the-first-step-towards-recovery/congratulations/ when Mike "congratulates" Dorothy on hooking up with Walky]].
* {{Tsundere}}: [[spoiler: Ruth, towards Billie]]. Deconstructed: [[spoiler: Ruth behaves this way because she has anti-social tendencies and a bad home life. Billie confronts Ruth demanding to know what their relationship is, after weeks of Ruth alternating between (awkward) displays of affection and bullying. When Ruth suddenly kisses her during all of this, she tells her to fuck off and runs away. Billie is very confused and hurt by whatever attraction she does feel. It's still played for comedy, but the situation is acknowledged by Willis as unhealthy and just wrong.]]
* TwoPersonLoveTriangle: Danny admits that Amber's resemblance to Dorothy has made him set his sights on somebody else.
* UltimateUniverse: To the Walkyverse.
* TheUnfairSex: Walky seems to suffer a bit of this in [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/05-saturdays-all-right-for-slighting/leisure/ this]] strip, courtesy of Joyce.
* UnsoundEffect: [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2010/comic/book-1/01-move-in-day/pun/ FRUMPH!]] (Also counts as a ShoutOut to the guy who hosts Willis' sites.)
* VitriolicBestBuds: For all that she snarks at him and vehemently insists that she doesn't like him in any way, it's implied that Billie is a lot fonder of Walky than she lets on. At the very least, she seems to spend a lot of time with him for someone who apparently considers herself too cool to be in his presence.
* WebcomicTime: Possibly one of the worst offenders of all time. As of December 2011, the strip had been running for roughly a year, and the amount of time that had passed was from Monday to ''Sunday.'' A year later, eight more days have passed, but only by skipping four days ahead in the middle of the week. At that rate, actual students in college at the strip's beginning will be sending ''their'' kids to college by the time the cast graduates.
* WeightWoe: It's pretty obvious that part of Billie's insecurity stems from being out of shape, and she expresses frustration and embarrassment at times about it.
* WhatTheHellHero: ''Mike'' of all people does this to Ethan when Ethan (who is Jewish) agrees to go to church with Joyce. [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/02-choosing-my-religion/wow/ With one word.]]
-->'''Mike:''' ...''WOW''.\\
'''Ethan:''' ''[in a small voice]'' Do not judge me.
* WhamLine:
** [[spoiler: In the flashback, "And then Dana's mother died. Breast cancer.]] Suddenly Sarah's junkie roommate just got a ''lot'' more sympathetic.
** Likewise, [[spoiler: "I called her dad."]] Roughly 90% of the controversy about whether or not Sarah did the right or wrong thing dissipated.[[note]]The remaining 10% is largely about [[spoiler: whether she did it for the right or wrong ''reasons'']][[/note]].
** Joyce's brother Joshua tells Ethan that his parents wouldn't like him if they knew more about him. Then he sends Ethan a link to his writing. [[spoiler:[=JocelyneJBrown=].com]]
--->'''Ethan:''' ...Oh.
* WhyDontYouJustShootHim?: After all the trouble Billie went to in order to get Sal to sign the agreement, [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/06-yesterday-was-thursday/freak/ Sal offers a simpler solution.]]
* WrongGenreSavvy: Billie ''thinks'' she's still the AlphaBitch, but hasn't quite realized that college is a much bigger place than high school.
* WorstWhateverEver: Danny calls Joe the worst wingman ever, which brings him to the brink of real tears.
* YouAreFat: Ruth does this to Billie to tear her down in public, although Walky isn't above teasing her either.
* YouDoNotWantToKnow: After Sarah and Jacob use Joyce's creationist beliefs as an ice-breaker, Sarah can't bring herself to tell Joyce about their first conversation.
-->'''Joyce:''' Well, that's weird. You ''always'' [[BrutalHonesty tell me stuff I definitely don't want to know.]]
* YouNeedToGetLaid: Daisy, the college newspaper editor, [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2011/comic/book-1/05-media-rumble/legitimate/ needs a girlfriend]]. ''Desperately''.
-->'''Daisy:''' No. I need ''facts''. I need ''evidence''. I need ''controversy''. I need ''titilation''. I need --\\
'''Dorothy:''' A girlfriend?\\
'''Daisy:''' [''[[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything engaging in scissor tribadism]]''] Huh? How'd you know?

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