[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/pvp42.jpg]]

!!!Not to be confused with the term PlayerVersusPlayer. Or the ''WebAnimation/{{RWBY}}'' [[Recap/RWBYV3E9PVP episode of the same name]]. Or [[PornWithoutPlot PWP]], for that matter.

''[[http://www.pvponline.com/ PvP]]'' is a gaming webcomic started in 1998 by cartoonist Scott Kurtz. It takes place around the office of a small magazine production company that produces the gaming magazine "[=PvP=]", focusing mostly on the office antics of a straight-laced boss, his snobby best friend, their bratty sixteen year old intern, a naive, careless troll, and two frat boys. Over time, the cast gained a female counterpart to the intern, a love interest for the snob in the form of a feminist gamer, and some other characters. It originally started as a pastiche AffectionateParody of video games and geek culture in general, moving away from that towards just being a slice of life comedy about its characters and an AffectionateParody of every 80s sitcom ever made.

----
!!Tropes:

* AbhorrentAdmirer: Non-romantic example: Rick "Turtle" Tuttle was this to Francis, until he died in an ill-advised bungee jump accident. He briefly returned during a Halloween storyline, having learned nothing from his death.
* AccidentalMarriage: [[spoiler: Francis and Marcie]] got drunk in UsefulNotes/LasVegas and got married. However they are trying their best to make it work.
* AirVentPassageway: Deconstructed in [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2017-09-29 this comic]].
* TheAllegedBoss: Cole is treated with little respect as a boss since he lets his employees get away with their zany hijinks. At one point the office had a new employee hired to help with finances, which Cole was not consulted about and was mocked when he complained.
* AllTrollsAreDifferent
* AmbulanceCut: Common gag for a while, with the last panel of a strip being an ambulance arriving. A later variation on this was Cole and Brent gleefully blasting away in the General Lee from ''Series/TheDukesOfHazzard''.
* ArbitrarilyLargeBankAccount: Robbie must have won one ''hell'' of a lottery jackpot, he apparently can splurge the GDP of a small country whenever he wants.
** He hired accountants to make sure he doesn't run out of money. He seems to have some investments in the pornographic industry as well, and now a significant shareholder for [=PvP=].
* ArtifactTitle: When was the last time the magazine itself meant anything?
** This became part of the comic due to the decline of print media and gaming journalism, eventually moving to an exclusively online magazine, and eventually shutting it down completely. The company, while still called ''PvP'' instead produces mobile games now.
** Lampshaded in a guest strip, where the characters find themselves looking at the magazine for the first time.
* ArtEvolution:
** Compare [[http://pvponline.com/comic/1998/05/04/mon-may-04 the first strip]] with [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2010/05/31/the-king-and-aiiieeee/ this more recent one]], or again [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2011/05/03/evening-wear/ this one]].
** Scott [[CallBack remade]] his [[http://pvponline.com/comic/1998/05/04/mon-may-04/ very first comic]] with his [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2013/11/12/back-to-one1/ new, more detailed style]]
** Scott once mentioned in his blog that after he moved into the Webcomic/PennyArcade offices, he and [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike_Krahulik Mike]] started copying elements of each others' styles.
* ArtShift: Kurtz did a Lolbat arc (The Laughing Bat) in the style of noir comics from TheThirties.
* AtomicFBomb: In the ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}'' [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2009/03/02/ombudsmen spoof]].
* AuthorAvatar:
** Scratch is actually Kurtz's cat. As of Sept 16th, 2008, he can talk, has cool goggles, and a ray gun.
** Also, there is a dog in the strip which was, and originally appeared as, Kurtz's dog. He later became Cole's. When the dog died in real life, the comic dog continued to appear.
** And Kurtz himself used to appear to speak directly to the readers. He hasn't done this in a while, probably because he keeps a blog now.
*** While we're on the topic, Kurtz writes in his father's actual comments from time to time, and Reggie is based on a real friend of Kurtz.
** Nowadays, Kurtz frequently uses Skull to reflect himself, but in a much less indirect manner. (His birthday reflected Scott's, etc.)
** Lolbat villain the Mad Hater seems to resemble a younger Kurtz in appearance, but in personality seems based on those parts of the fanbase who dislike the Lolbat interludes.
* BadassSanta: Whenever Kringus shows up.
** [[http://pvponline.com/comic/kringus-risen-part-9-lets-get-ready-to-kringglleee First appearance.]][[note]]Though to be fair, that's actually one of his helpers. But the helpers are badass too.[[/note]]
** [[http://pvponline.com/comic/pec-the-halls Two years later.]] He's been working out. Kringus and Santa [[MidBattleTeaBreak spend a moment discussing Santa's fitness program.]]
* BatmanGambit: Francis pulls off a really good one on Cole in [[http://pvponline.com/comic/grounds-for-termination this comic]].
* BearsAreBadNews: The RunningGag where Brent gets mauled by a panda. This has been played with in just about every possible way, including an arc where Brent and the panda become FireForgedFriends when a crazy activist tries to kidnap it, only to have the ResetButton pressed a short while later after a ZanyScheme to get the panda to mate backfires and results in Brent getting [[RapeAsComedy raped by the female panda]] in question.
* BigBrotherMentor: Brent to Francis, though [[http://pvponline.com/comic/oh-brother not consciously]].
* BiTheWay:
** [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2011/04/26/turn-of-the-bookworm/ Miranda, apparently]]. Or maybe she's not, and [[AttentionWhore just likes attention]]. Or is just messing with her sisters.
** Brent occasionally shows some same-sex attraction, but he's always [[PlayedForLaughs playing it for laughs]] in-universe. Like Miranda, he may just be messing with people, though one strip implies he may have experimented in college.
* BlindWithoutEm: In a somewhat unusual example, Brent, because [[FridgeBrilliance he wears sunglasses so often that his eyes can't handle the sunlight.]]
* BrickJoke: In [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2000/01/24/mon-jan-24/ this]] [=PvP=] strip we get a punchline that looks like a throwaway line. Then, [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2008/05/23/falling-down/ eight]] [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2008/05/26/change/ years]] later...
* TheButlerDidIt: Inverted: [[spoiler:Butler is the LOLBAT and solves crimes instead of perpetrating them.]]
* BumblingDad: Cole was originally portrayed as this with his wife and family. [[spoiler: Until their divorce]]
* CameBackWrong: One of the party during the "Mines of Madness" TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons arc, his soul accidently becomes fused with the Gelatinous Cube that dissolved his body. [[spoiler:He thinks it's awesome.]]
* TheCameo: Happens a ''lot'' in [=PvP=].
** Series/House shows up when Brent is injured in a [[http://pvponline.com/comic/its-never-lupus Paint Ball accident]].
** Jade Fontaine [[http://pvponline.com/comic/oct-20-2007 meets]] Series/BarneyMiller and Harris in her ''[[http://pvponline.com/comic/sep-22-2007 Dial "N" for NURDER!]]'' murder mystery parody.
** Creator/CharltonHeston introduces a parody arc (see MirrorUniverse).
* CaptainErsatz:
** Scratch Fury and the "[[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2010/01/04/my-buddy-and-me/ Cabbage Scratch Kid]]" do a subverted riff on ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes''. The subversion is that the cat is real and the boy is a doll. Hungry Cat might be a riff on Moe and/or Susie Derkins.
** There was an arc where Scratch made a device to find his fellow superintelligent cats called [[Franchise/XMen FUREBRO]] and used it to find a cat who was a feline expy of Comicbook/DoctorStrange.
* CerebusSyndrome: The strip toys with this to some extent. It never goes full-over into drama, but for most of its run now it's alternated between Gag Per Day format, {{dramedy}}, and [[RuleOfDrama downright serious drama]]. Some people felt the strip fell full into CerebusSyndrome during the Brent/Jade wedding arc, which happened to overlap with a surprisingly serious turn for Skull, Cole's marriage falling apart, and a story about Robbie and Jase falling out. Of course, the strip quickly went back to comedic arcs after a few months, just as it always had done before.
** Parodied in one strip where Cole reveals that he has inoperable cancer, and Jade accuses Brent of having a drinking problem.
* CheatedAngle: Before Brent revealed his face (well, [[NegativeContinuity again]]), he would always be drawn so that you could never see his eyes behind his sunglasses. Now, when seen from the side, [[ArtEvolution you can clearly see his eyes]].
** Also Jase's eyes were always covered by his hat until he started dating Robbie's gardener and temporarily stopped wearing it. He got his hat back but now his eyes are clearly visible (and he's lost a lot of weight).
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: This has happened to several minor characters over the course of the comic. Cole's wife and children haven't appeared in almost fifteen years (justified, at least in the wife's case, by their being divorced), Sonya Powers (Skull's girlfriend) and Gwen haven't been in a comic for about ten years. Even characters like Reggie and Jase seem to have disappeared entirely.
** Reggie, for one, is not forgotten as he was name-dropped [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2014/08/21/stick-it-to-me in 2014]], years after his last actual appearance in the comic.
** Gwen is back as of [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2016-11-07 this comic]], though so far it hasn't gone anywhere.
** Jase is also back, and [[spoiler:has hired Gwen after [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2016-11-01 surprising Cole]]]].
* ColorfulThemeNaming: Brent Sienna is a pun on "burnt sienna". Note that he's also pretty [[DeadpanSnarker dry]]...
** And his wife is named "Jade".
** In Max Powers' office, Brent's counterpart is named "Hunter Greene".
* ComicallySerious: Leela, taken to adorable extremes in her [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2014/11/05/memories-of-me childhood.]]
* ComicBookTime: ''OH'' yes. The characters have aged somewhat as the series progressed, but in periodic jumps rather than it happening naturally. Cole's children were toddlers when the comic began but are now in college, while Francis hasnt aged more than about five years. And of course, none of the pets are affected by aging. As of 2015, most of the cast are in their early 40s or late 30's, while Marcy and Francis are in their late 20's. Skull, being a mythical creature who's centuries old, hasnt aged at all.
* CommediaDellArteTroupe: Some sequences, such as the "Bulldog and Cooch" strips using Cole, Brent and Max Powers playing different characters.
* CompensatingForSomething: Discussed when [[http://pvponline.com/comic/thu-jan-16 Brent buys a new TV]].
* CompressedAbstinence: Brent Sienna once resolved to give up sarcasm. He made a crack about his boss' weight-loss resolution a mere five seconds later, which was considered a new personal record for him.
* DeadpanSnarker: Brent and Jade. Also, Francis, but not full-time.
* DealWithTheDevil: [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2010/07/05/brent-and-the-devil-pt-1/ One soul for a cup of coffee.]] Then again 1) Brent didn't really think the barista was the Devil, and 2) it was a really good cup of coffee. The Devil(?), rather than taking Brent to Hell as is the usual way these deals turn out, uses his ownership of Brent's soul to make him his errand boy.
** [[spoiler:Also, [[TheyWastedAPerfectlyGoodPlot he's not really the devil]]. He's a computer security expert, and he's using the terror and humiliation he's engendering by pretending to be the devil to soften up Brent and Cole to the notion of hiring him to redo their security.]]
* {{Deconstruction}} - Ladies and Gentlemen, [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2009/12/07/high-pitched-pitch/ Gordy and the Prarie Dogs]] "[[Franchise/AlvinAndTheChipmunks Hula Hoops!]]".
* DidntWeUseThisJokeAlready: Brent's about to tell a joke, then realises they'd already done it before. He panics and blurts out "[[BreathlessNonSequitur Candle harmonica monkey fart]]!" [[spoiler: Cut to ten years prior and Francis saying the same thing.]]
* TheDitz - Skull.
* EveryEpisodeEnding - Every "Bulldog and Cooch" segment ends with their vehicle or house boat blowing up.
* ExcuseBoomerang: There was an early strip in which Cole attempted this unsuccessfully. His employees were in the habit of neglecting their jobs to play video games. At one point, he told them that he was too busy playing a certain game to finish the payroll, only to decide a moment later that he actually should get it out of the way.
* ExpressiveMask - Scratch Fury as Kringus.
* ExternalCombustion - The "Bulldog and Cooch" strips.
* EyesAlwaysShut: Various [[http://pvponline.com/comic/getting-drafty-in-here random characters]], here and there, just as part of Kurtz's drawing style.
* TheFaceless - Jase's girlfriend, Bonnie.
* FakeHigh: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/sat-dec-31 Francis]] celebrates the new year by getting drunk.
--> '''Cole:''' He's drunk off his ass. What's in those things?
--> '''Jade:''' Orange juice and Seven Up.
* FantasticRacism - Skull occasionally expresses some disdain over the usual portrayal of trolls.
** And apparently [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2004/11/14/sun-nov-14/ dark elves are bastards]].
** Skull has actually gone so far as to go on strike and protest against the unfair treatment of fantasy creatures.
** Skull and his dwarven (as in an actual fantasy dwarf) girlfriend Valerie have their first real fight as a couple after Valerie just assumed that Skull would try to eat her pet goat.
* ForgottenAnniversary - The author admitted when Brent and Jade's anniversary came that he'd forgotten it... so he followed up with a strip with both of them forgetting it.
--> ''Brent:'' Wait. So which one of us is in trouble here?
* FreakyFridayFlip: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/mar-14-2006 Here.]] Includes an accidental BedTrick.
* FrenchMaid - Robbie had one while trying out servants. See RealJokeName.
* GagSeries
* GamerChick - Marcy is a cookie cutter example (right down to the {{Tsundere}} girlfriend aspects). Averted with Jade.
** Also how Jade and Brent started dating. Francis played the {{GIRL}} for Brent; out of compassion, Jade took over the role and tried to bring Brent down gently.
* {{Gasshole}}: Skull, especially early on in the comic, much to Brent's disgust.
* {{Gaydar}}: Invoked [[http://pvponline.com/comic/mar-13-2007 here]] and immediately debunked.
* TheGhost: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/abby-normal Abby]], who was apparently a member of their D&D campaign who didn't work out.
* GirlOnGirlIsHot:
** Brent initially thinks Miranda is there to fulfill his fantasy of watching Jade get it on with another girl.
** Artist Frank Cho made a [[http://pvponline.com/comic/apr-24-2006 guest strip]] guaranteed to raise the heart rate[[note]]among other things[[/note]] of anybody who enjoys this trope.
** Brent totally misses seeing [[http://pvponline.com/comic/fri-nov-08 this kiss]] while his office-mates are stunned into silence. (Though he tries to make up for it [[http://pvponline.com/comic/wed-nov-13 later]].)
* GratuitousGerman - [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2009/09/28/schaden-fraud/ Here]]. Made even more hilarious by the comic notes.
* {{GIRL}} - Francis's ''VideoGame/CityOfHeroes'' character, Catfight.
* HeavyMetalUmlaut - Parodied when Francis makes a FakeBand and initially wants to call it "Umlaüt". When he finds this was already taken by a real life band, he settles on "Djörk".
* HelloNurse - [[InvokedTrope Invoked]] [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2012/01/05/hello-nurse/ here]].
* HeroicBuild - Francis of all people has this. Played with in that it's genetic as he doesn't work out.
* HisNameReallyIsBarkeep - Butler. As well as one-shot character [[http://pvponline.com/comic/jul-15-2006 Suitecannes]] (pronounced "Sweet-can").
* HollywoodNerd - To a certain extent, Brent is this. He pretends he's not a nerd, but his interests are very nerd-oriented. Furthermore, as in this trope, he's good-looking and socially adept (in other words, "normal"). The twist is that Brent is the ''only'' HollywoodNerd in the main cast (except maybe Max Powers and Jade), since Francis and Cole are closer to popular perceptions of nerdom.
* IDidWhatIHadToDo - [[spoiler:Duck fires Cole]] and justifies it by claiming that [[spoiler:Cole is the reason the company is in such dire straits now. [[JerkassHasAPoint Which is at least partially true]], since Cole did hide the company's floundering finances instead of seeking help earlier.]]
* IHatePastMe - Somewhat played with. Duck is what Max once was. Max has a bit of a HeroicBSOD once he realizes what it's like to be on the other end.
* IHaveBoobsYouMustObey - Miranda.
* ImpossibleHourglassFigure: Many of [=PvP=]'s women are buxom with slim waists and wide hips, notably [[http://pvponline.com/comic/sister-act Miranda]].
** The series has gone through ArtEvolution over time; the style became softer and more realistic, and the girls lost their impossibly narrow waists and thin necks.
* InfantImmortality: Averted; the first child Skull was assigned to after Brent's marriage ended up dying in a wagon accident, [[CrossingTheLineTwice implied to be due to Skull landing on him when the wagon crashed.]]
* IntercontinuityCrossover - PVP has crossed over with Kurtz's other creations Captain Amazing and Samwise.
* InterspeciesRomance:
** Skull and Sonya.
** Skull and Val.
* IntoxicationEnsues: Skull gets stoned on a bad orange julius and takes a job as a MallSanta while high.
* ItWillNeverCatchOn meets LifeImitatesArt: We never got [[http://pvponline.com/comic/sat-feb-03 BassetQuest]], but we did get VideoGame/GoatSimulator.
* TheJeeves - Butler.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold - Brent. [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2010/04/07/family-matters-2/ this strip.]]
* [[JugglingLoadedGuns Juggling Loaded Rayguns]] - [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2008/09/15/count-of-two/ 2008/09/15]], when Scratch tries to threaten someone with his [[ShurFineGuns ray gun]].
* KlatchianCoffee - Francis' twitch gamer 'power drink'.
** Except all it did was make him hallucinate and vomit uncontrollably. A bit too powerful...
* LeaningOnTheFourthWall - [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2010/04/07/family-matters-2/ This strip]] starts out as this, but moves on to straight-up [[BreakingTheFourthWall breaking it.]][[note]]In fact, Francis calls out [[DeadpanSnarker two]] [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold tropes]] by name and references a [[CheatedAngle third]].[[/note]]
* LevelUpAtIntimacy5 - Francis and Marcy. Literally. Came free with complimentary [[LampshadeHanging lampshading]].
** And [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2011/01/13/all-grown-1up/ it happened again]], only through ThePowerOfFriendship.
* MadScientist: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/candles-in-the-dark Scratch Fury, Destroyer of Worlds]]. Fortunately for mankind, his very nature as a cat makes him easy to thwart.
* MallSanta:
** Skull becomes one while stoned on a bad Orange Julius.
** Brent also did a brief stint.
* MirrorUniverse: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/mon-apr-23 This arc]], including the mandatory BeardOfEvil. Creator/CharltonHeston[[note]]self-LampShaded cartoon parody[[/note]] introduces and concludes the story. [[spoiler:Unfortunately we don't get to see evil!Jade.]]
* MistakenForCheating: Contrary to all expectations, [[http://pvponline.com/comic/gossip-guys Brent and Chet hit it off]]. But when they start disappearing with vague boys'-night-out excuses, Jade and Miranda track them down to find out what they're really doing. However, it's far, far worse than anything they could ever have imagined -- they find that [[spoiler:Chet is ''[[http://pvponline.com/comic/bros-before-prose reading poetry in a coffee house]]'']]. Gasp!
--> '''Miranda:''' Why couldn't I have found him with another woman?
* MistakenForGay: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/thu-nov-07 Jade by Gwen.]]
* MoodWhiplash - Brent and Jade's wedding.
* MundaneWish - Subverted. When a genie offered Brent and Cole one wish, they used it to get the General Lee from ''Series/TheDukesOfHazzard'', but enjoy it so much they seem to have no regrets.
* NaughtyNurseOutfit: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/fri-dec-30 Jade]] as part of a Nyquil-fueled hallucination.
* NeverWinTheLottery: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/mon-nov-07 Inverted.]] It ends up laying the groundwork and providing fuel and/or settings for multiple major story arcs, not to mention CharacterDevelopment out the wazoo, as well as introducing significant new characters.
* NotSoImaginaryFriend - Skull's super-intelligent cat.
** Inverted with Skull. Everyone in the comic can see Skull with the exception of Max Powers.
*** [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2010/04/09/deja-view/ Not anymore.]]
* ObliviousAdmirer - Ricky "Turtle" Tuttle is this to Francis.
* OffhandBackhand: Robbie [[http://pvponline.com/comic/wed-jan-15 takes out a sales drone]] before he can do any damage.
* OurWerewolvesAreDifferent: A BeastMan version that has self-control while transformed and [[VoluntaryShapeshifting complete control over the change]], which is instantaneous and painless. The only obvious change is claws and instant fur growth, though the second arc implies they also have enhanced abilities. Two Halloween arcs:
** The first is in [[http://pvponline.com/comic/october-25-2004 2004]]. [[spoiler:Cole]] gets bitten by a werewolf and infects [[spoiler:Jade and Brent. Francis]] thinks it's cool, tries and fails to get bitten as well, and in the end cures them with wolfsbane out of spite.
** The second is in [[http://pvponline.com/comic/fri-nov-18 2005]]. It turns out [[spoiler:Cole]] never drank the spiked punch and is still a wolfman. He is tricked into biting [[spoiler:Francis]], and the two go on to use their enhanced abilities to fight crime. In the end, [[spoiler: Scratch Fury, Destroyer of Worlds]] tricks them into eating wolfsbane to depower them, because he doesn't want them foiling his plans of world domination.
* PacmanFever - [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2012/09/26/going-to-the-chapel Francis gets a ring with a Pokemon on it]]. Not a specific Pokemon, just "a Pokemon". A minor example, but considering Francis and Marcy are supposed to be nerds, the reference feels awkward. Of course the fact they are completely drunk at the time might help explain it.
* PaintballEpisode - a paintball storyline gets most of the rules right, then turns around and intentionally gets them wrong.
* PandaingToTheAudience - The Office Panda.
* ThePiratesWhoDontDoAnything - Very rarely does the plot involve the cast actually having to produce a magazine. The rest of the time the office is just a setting for hijinks.
** Lampshaded in a guest strip:
--->'''Brent:''' You know, this is the first time I've actually seen our magazine.
** Lampshaded again [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2011/03/30/glass-act/ here]]:
--->'''Marcie:''' Don't you have work to do?
--->'''Francis:''' Probably. My job description has never been very clear.
** Justified as the magazine is now no longer in production.
* PornStash: Robbie entire second floor of his mansion is one.
--> Francis: My God Robbie, How did you amass this much porn?!
--> Robbie: I own a couple of adult entertainment companies. They send me one of everything.
** At which point Francis starts making Smut Angels.
* PregnancyScare: Arc starts [[http://pvponline.com/comic/mon-oct-10 here]] and lasts about 17 strips, includes a self-insightful dream sequence, and at the end we see that [[spoiler:Brent had nearly proposed to Jade]].
* ProductPlacement - Not necessarily in the comic itself, but several of the site designs have been lousy with it, almost to the point that clicking anywhere outside the comic accidentally would take you to a sponsor site.
** As of the end of July 2011, [=PvP=] is now sponsored by MagicTheGathering (at least for the next quarter). Kurtz explains why at http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2011/07/22/oh-oh-its-magic/
* ProudToBeAGeek - The whole cast, with the exception of Jade. Even she might just be a different style of geek...
** Brent is actually an aversion, and while he admits to "interests that coincide with nerdity" he denies being an actual nerd, which Francis (a straight example of this trope) calls him out on. He's an avowed Apple geek who will buy ''any'' product they make, a D&D player, a gamer, he plays ''WorldOfWarcraft'' with his wife (who's in many ways geekier than him), quotes movies constantly, has declared Creator/JossWhedon his master, almost dropped out of college because he was hooked on Sega games, and consistently gets into arguments about genre fiction or gaming with Francis and Cole. [[BlatantLies But he's not a nerd. Definitely not a nerd.]]
*** He's also a big fan of StarWars and plays every game released in this franchise with Cole.
* ProtagonistCenteredMorality - Particularly obvious with the treatment of Max Powers. He is, by all appearances, a friendly guy who's happy to help, whose worst crimes are being successful and pulling bad jokes [[http://www.websnark.com/archives/2004/10/because_i_keep.html no worse than the protagonists would pull]]. Yet every time he stopped by the [=PvP=] office he was received like he was some sort of colossal dick dead set on destroying everything the staff held dear, for no discernible reason. This was confronted and deconstructed during the [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2008/11/19/excuses-excuses/ Thanksgiving 2008 arc]].
** The trope is now moot, as Max is now [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2010/04/06/now-hire-zing/ an accepted member of the staff.]]
* PunchClockVillain - [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2005/11/01/tue-nov-01 The Panda]].
* PutOnABus:
** Marcy went to college in one story arc, and [[TheBusCameBack later returned]].
** Robbie and Jase. Robbie still shows up on occasion, but Jase is basically gone, having dropped most of his college-era slacker lifestyle after entering a relationship with Robbie's female gardener.
** Cole's now-ex-wife and their children.
* RealJokeName - Butler and the FrenchMaid Suitecannes.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot - Not long after Scott Kurtz moved from Dallas to Seattle in 2009, the [=PvP=] staff made a similar relocation.
* ReedRichardsIsUseless: Zig-zagged [[http://pvponline.com/comic/sat-feb-18 here]]. Scratch has ''actually'' made a cure for the common cold -- but uses it for selfish and trivial purposes.
** Francis once builds a robot duplicate of himself... to wait in line for ''Star Wars Episode III''.
* RedundantParody - In one Lolbat strip we see his GrammarNazi-themed RoguesGallery. Kurtz made one of the villains "Onomatopoeia" as a joke both on the theme and the use of onomatopoeia in the sixties Series/{{Batman}} show. However, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Onomatopoeia_%28comics%29 there actually is a DC Comics villain called Onomatopoeia]], based on a sinister reinterpretation of the same reference, and he even looks somewhat similar (by coincidence) to what Kurtz drew. To his credit, on being informed of this Kurtz edited the strip and replaced him with a palindrome-themed villain.
* TheReveal: [[spoiler: BUTLER]] is Lolbat!
* RevisedEnding: Kurtz frequently pokes fun at other works, usually through parody. Occasionally he'll indulge his sense of the ridiculous by creating an alternate ending to a known work, often simply by brushing away ArtisticLicense and showing a more probable outcome.
** [[http://pvponline.com/comic/left-4-read This]] is a parody ending of one of the original Twilight Zones' most famous episodes,[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time_Enough_at_Last Time Enough At Last]].
* RunningGag - Several:
** The Giant Panda savaging Brent.
** A strip ending with an ambulance speeding away after a character gets AmusingInjuries.
** Cole and Brent racing to an appointment by blasting off in the General Lee from ''The Dukes of Hazzard'' (after wishing for it from a genie).
** Brent puts Skull on lookout for Cole while working on a scheme.
* SeventiesHair - Bulldog and Cooch. [[WebOriginal/LOLCats They haz it]].
* SexAsRiteOfPassage - Combined with a PlotRelevantAgeUp with Francis and Marcy.
-->"LEVEL UP! You gain: +3 Years Maturity!... Community College Courses!
* SexySantaDress: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/fri-dec-19 Jade]]. And how! We don't get to see the outfit below the waist, but up top, the huge fur-trimmed collar draws the eye's attention to her ample cleavage like a CleavageWindow turned UpToEleven.
* ShoutOut:
** There's one to ''WesternAnimation/AdventureTime'' [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2012/01/09/coming-up-for-air/ here.]]
** [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2010/04/07/family-matters-2 Sayyy, some of those phrases look real familiar...]]
** [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2015/05/07/night-court A May, 2015]] arc involves a reference to ''Series/NightCourt''.
** Brent's dialogue on the last panel of [[http://pvponline.com/comic/sat-dec-06 this comic]] is a reference to Film/{{Freaks}}. Also [[http://pvponline.com/comic/oct-21-2006 here.]]
** Film/BackToTheFuture [[http://pvponline.com/comic/february-1-2006 here.]]
** Series/ThePrisoner1967 starts [[http://pvponline.com/comic/sun-nov-25 here]], though we don't see the island itself until [[http://pvponline.com/comic/fri-nov-30 this strip]].
** The weapons in [[http://pvponline.com/comic/sat-jun-11 this strip]] resemble the [[http://www.lirpa.de/pic/lirpa_07.jpg "lirpa"]] in the Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries episode ''Amok Time''.
** In [[http://pvponline.com/comic/ombudsmen this]] Film/{{Watchmen}} parody he throws at least [[ComicStrip/{{Popeye}} six]] [[ComicStrip/{{Garfield}} different]] [[ComicStrip/{{Blondie}} popular]] [[ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}} syndicated]] [[ComicStrip/{{Dilbert}} newspaper]] [[ComicStrip/{{Cathy}} comics]] into the mix and hits "puree".
** Miranda [[http://pvponline.com/comic/lock-and-load dresses]] as [[Characters/StreetFighterII Cammy White]] for a paintball game.[[note]]She must be pretty confident about her skill, because the outfit doesn't give much protection, and paintballs ''hurt''. She does at least wear a proper mask during the game.[[/note]] At the end of the arc she even delivers a [[http://pvponline.com/comic/shoryuken proper videogame fighting move]] complete with floating on-screen scores.
** [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2017-01-13 Princess Jade Organa]]?
** [[http://pvponline.com/comic/apr-21-2006 A line-up of pandas]] included Pan Pan from ''WebAnimation/HomestarRunner'''s 20X6.
* SitcomArchnemesis - Max Powers.
** In RealLife, Gabe and Tycho from PennyArcade, their good-natured cruelty to each other popping up in a strip every once in a while. Scott's foreword to one of their print collections ended with "Fuck them, and fuck you for buying this book and not PVP," and Gabe and Tycho refer to Scott as "Steve Kuntz" on a regular basis. Now that Scott is living in Seattle and working in the Penny Arcade offices, one only assumes that the hijinks will continue.
*** Also, the old [=WoW=] guilds (Panda Attack for [=PvP=], the Knights of Arcadia for Penny Arcade) were pretty much an online, massively-multiplayer extension of the real-life relationship between the two. [[Webcomic/CtrlAltDel B^Uckley]] tried to get in on it with his own guild, but when Kurtz, Krahulik, and Holkins would have none of it, he ended things on a predictable note (e.g. massive hostility for all).
* SkywardScream
* SoapWithinAShow: When Brent got access to the CCTV footage, they turned the lives of the maintenance staff into a telenovela.
* SpeakOfTheDevil: Any mention of pandas immediately leads to Brent getting mauled by one.
* SpeaksInShoutouts - Lolbat with internet memes.
* StraightMan - Cole
* StraightGay: Max
* SunglassesAtNight - Brent: He wore them under his bandages when he was blinded, and when he took them off, he was BlindWithoutEm.
* SuperHero:
** Kurtz's earlier character Captain Amazing made an early appearance and earned a spinoff.
** More recently, we've seen Jingle Force Five (a Christmas-themed parody of the original ComicBook/XMen lineup).
** The Lolbat is an ongoing character; he's a combination of Franchise/{{Batman}} and the internet lolcat phenomenon whose RoguesGallery is made up of {{Grammar Nazi}}s and other assorted Internet-based phenomena. He also has a sidekick named [[Website/{{Twitter}} [=ReTwee=]t]].
*** True, but he [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2010/03/05/tweet-titan/ does not want]].
*** He's reluctantly accepted [=ReTweet=] as his sidekick, and has also obtained two allies, the Double Rainbow.
*** And yet another ally: [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2016-11-18 while bored one day]], [[spoiler:Miranda [[ShaggySearchTechnique stumbled]] onto Lolbat's [[BookcasePassage hidden]] lair, [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2016-12-07 discovered]] his suits were made of AppliedPhlebotinum, and used one to make herself into [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instagram Instagirl]]]].
* TakeThat - Kurtz inserts plenty of these, aimed at a wide range of targets.
** Including the "MY PARENTS ARE DEAAAAAAD" take on Batman delivered by [[Franchise/{{Superman}} everyone's favorite dick]].
** This [[http://pvponline.com/comic/2017-01-25 strip]] has made a bite on AuthorTract for Cole rather than being one itself.
* TeacherStudentRomance/Hot For Teacher: Jade and Miranda [[http://pvponline.com/comic/may-3-2006 go out]] to try to find a suitable boyfriend for Miranda. Jade tries to dress frumpy so as not divert attention away from her sister, but the effect she gets [[HotLibrarian isn't what she intends.]]
* TeamDad: Cole takes on this role a lot, especially early on when Francis was still a teenager.
* ThanksForTheMammary - Francis honks Jade's boob when he thinks that he's in the future and therefore his actions have no consequences (ItMakesSenseInContext). This leads to Jade leaving [=PvP=] to start her her own magazine.
** Part of the reason she returns to [=PvP=] is because one of her (female) coworkers in the new magazine does the [+exact same thing+].
* ThatCameOutWrong: Marcie is almost certainly [[http://pvponline.com/comic/double-tap talking about Destiny]], but Francis' confusion is understandable.
* ThoseTwoGuys: Brent [[http://pvponline.com/comic/strangerer-dangerer runs into]] a pair of pretentious {{hipster}}s[[note]]granted, "pretentious hipster" may be a [[http://www.dictionary.com/browse/tautology tautology]][[/note]] as soon as [=PvP=] hits Seattle. The team keeps running into them after that. They're usually either snarky, indignant, or both.
* TwoGamersOnACouch - Robbie and Jase were very nearly a parody of this as a B side story. At one point they got locked in their playing room for four months and didn't even notice.
** Also later the couch broke and they had a funeral pyre for it.
--> Robbie "Okay everyone stand back. This thing absorbed decades worth of farts and it's going to go up like a Roman candle."
* UnconventionalSmoothie - Francis's twitch-gamer power drink.
* UnfortunateNames - When Skull creates his VideoGame/CityOfHeroes character, he makes a fire-based hero which he wants to name ''Flame Retardant.'' Unfortunately, the game engine's limitations prevent him from entering the whole thing which then ends up being ''Flame Retard'' instead.
* VivaLasVegas - [[spoiler:Francis and Marcie]] get a quickie Vegas marriage during a gaming tournament.
* VersusTitle
* WackyMarriageProposal: The arc starts [[http://pvponline.com/comic/aug-2-2007 here]]. Starts out well, [[HilarityEnsues goes horribly wrong]], goes right when [[spoiler:Jade accepts]], goes wrong again when [[HilaritySues they end up in jail]], and then [[DeusExMachina back out again]].
* WeCanRuleTogether: In her first D&D campaign, Leela betrays the party and offers herself up to manage the evil dragon's kingdom.
* WhatTheHellHero - Done twice in a row. [[spoiler:Max breaks into Cole's office and figures out [=PvP=] is going under and Cole calls him out on it and promptly fires him... But then Brent, after finding out Max is indeed right and that Cole had been ignoring Max, gives Cole an epic slap to the face.]]
* WhamLine - [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2013/06/14/change-of-plans1 "I'm late."]]
** Less dramatic, but [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2008/11/19/excuses-excuses "Why don't you guys like me?"]] certainly changed things hugely for the cast dynamic.
* WholePlotReference - Although the strip frequently alludes to films, comics and video games in its plots, the confrontation between Cole and Lucille which played out over several strips at the end of a 2013 LARP arc is taken practically line-by-line from the confrontation between Luke and the Emperor from ''Film/ReturnOfTheJedi'', with Cole as Luke, Lucille as the Emperor, and [[spoiler:Max]] as Vader.
* YoungerThanTheyLook - Cole, Brent, Robbie and Jase were college roommates, which suggests they're around the same age. Cole states in one early strip that he's ''about to turn 30''. He looks a solid 15 years older than Brent.
* YourMom - [[http://www.pvponline.com/comic/2009/06/16/old-the-phone/ Expertly delivered by Francis.]]
* ZanyScheme - Referred to as "Wacky Adventure". On one occasion Cole actually vetoed a perfectly good plan to discover the identity of Jade's online romance on the grounds that it wasn't interestingly wacky enough.

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