Characters: Bloom County

Note that this list also applies to the strip's spin-offs, Outland and Opus.

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     Main Cast 

Milo Bloom

The star of Bloom County from its earliest days, Milo was the group's Only Sane Man, though he could be goofy as the rest of his friends when the situation called for it. Also a dedicated journalist with a habit for completly making up stories stretching the truth.

  • Almighty Janitor: Has a lot of pull at the Bloom Beacon despite being the intern and later copy boy.
    • It helps that the Chief Editor is a jittery wreck from trying and failing to hold off his yellow-journalism impulses, and thus spends much of his time hunched on his desk in agony as Milo tempts him.
  • Characterization Marches On: See below.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Early in the strip, to the point of having a crush on Betty Crocker. He mellowed out with time but still has traces of it, such as when he is holding casual conversations while spearfishing at a small creek with a whale harpoon.
  • Deadpan Snarker
  • Intrepid Reporter: Parodied.
  • Lurid Tales of Doom: What he publishes in most of his articles for the paper.
  • Only Sane Man: For most of the strip, especially in the Meadow Party storylines.
  • Put on a Bus: He wasn't in Outland or Opus. (Though he did have a nonspeaking cameo in one of the last Outland a passenger on a bus!)
  • The Short Guy with Glasses


An anxious, loveable penguin and the main character for most of Bloom County and its two sequel strips (Outland and Opus). Opus is very nervous and often forced into situations he'd rather not be in; he is also a sucker for late night TV ads. He was also on a quest to find his mother for some of the duration of Bloom County and Outland, finding her at the end of the latter. But then he promptly fled in Opus when he found her insufferable.

  • Art Evolution: Opus' nose grows substantially larger as the series progresses.
    • Characterization Marches On: He also becomes less of a penguin and more like some kind of vaguely penguinish humanoid: his nose is much more like a mammalian/human nose (he even gets rhinoplasty at one point, and it's fleshy enough to liposuction) and he ends up with teeth and hands.
  • Butt Monkey: Forced into doing a lot of things and treated like crap by the world a good chunk of the time.
  • Breakout Character / Ensemble Dark Horse: Opus was originally only supposed to appear for a few weeks, but both the fans and Breathed himself loved the character so much, he quickly became a regular and eventually the main character. "Pear Pimples for Hairy Fishnuts" was arguably his breakout.
  • Everything's Better with Penguins
  • Gag Nose: His large nose has been the butt of many jokes, a sample of which can be seen here.
  • Interspecies Romance: Was engaged to human Lola Granola for at least a year and has gone on dates with other human women.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: After he and Cutter John disappeared over the ocean, he returned with regular amnesia. But after a while his normal personality and memories returned but what happened to Cutter John was unknown.
    • Luckily months later, a false claim that Eddie Murphy was marrying Opus' crush Diane Sawyer shocked him enough to jar his memory.
  • Missing Mom: A recurring theme in Bloom County and Outland.
  • My Beloved Smother: See Wanting Is Better Than Having below.
  • Put on a Bus: Twice. The first time he and Cutter John were lost at sea and presumed dead and he came back with amnesia. Then later in the strip, after Bill became Fundamentally Oral Bill, he was kicked out of the Boarding House by the converted house members after Bill decried "Penguin Lust" on TV. He came back later after Bill stopped being popular and stayed ever since.
  • Retcon: He used to be Binkley's pet.
  • Rip Van Winkle: Bloom County 2015 starts with him waking up from a nap and being told he slept for 25 years.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: He's very fond of herring.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With every single charicter except Binkley, though it's mostly one sided.
  • Wanting Is Better Than Having: Opus seached for all of Bloom County and Outland for his mother only to find out she was overly controlling and tried to force him to marry a large, replusive penguin named Eunice.

Bill The Cat

The second most famous character.

  • Anthropomorphic Shift: Became taller and longer-limbed over time. The trope was inverted as well, as Bill also gradually stopped speaking in anything but grunts and "ack"s and suffered a major drop in intelligence.
  • Back from the Dead: Thanks to Oliver cloning him from his only remains (His tongue).
  • Breakout Character: Created by Breathed as the least marketable character possible, he ended up with tons of merchandise.
  • The Chew Toy
  • Expansion Pack Past
  • Fat Cat: In any of the early strips.
  • The Grotesque: Played with. Bill is an ugly, smelly, brain-dead cat, but he doesn't let this stop him from gaining fame, fortune, and women.
  • Hypocrite: During his stint as a self-righteous televangelist, Bill persecuted penguins for their "penguin lust." It's later revealed that he's had his own indiscretions with a "transexual slave trader". Bill showed no remorse, and his viewers quickly forgave him,
  • Kavorka Man: Especially in Outland.
  • Overly Long Tongue: Which he plays as an instrument during his stint with the heavy metal band Deathtongue.
  • The Unintelligible: he only speaks coherently every once in a while. Usually he says little more than "ACK."
  • Why Do You Keep Changing Jobs?: He has been a lot of things, including a TV star, heavy metal frontman, dead, Meadow Party Presidential candidate, Rajneesh cultist, communist, televangelist and Donald Trump. (And that's just in the Bloom County canon...)

Michael Binkley

A wide eyed idealist and Milo and Opus' best friend. Lived with his dad Tom, who he clashed with with their polar opposite personalities. Also has a closet full of anxieties.

  • Breakout Character: Went from a nerdy Klinger to one of the main characters.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Epecially early on.
  • Dysfunctional Family: He often acts as a voice of reason and reluctant parental figure for his man child father.
  • Future Loser
  • Last Name Basis: His real name is Michael Binkley, but even his dad calls him Binkley.
  • Missing Mom: Ran away with a Hell's Angel about 2 years after Binkley first appeared.
  • Only Sane Man
  • The Pollyanna
  • Progressively Prettier: In his very first appearance he was a gawky, chubby, bespectacled, bald kid. Though almost immediately he grew his iconic giant puff of hair.
  • Retcon: By the beginning of Opus, Binkley had apparently aged into a teenager, had a disastrous first kiss, and had become a Tibetan eunuch. He returned in a later comic, unaged, with zero explanation.
    • Earlier than that, near the beginning of Outland he'd apparently become Bart Simpson. This was likewise dropped.

Steve Dallas

A scumbag lawyer with murderers as his almost exclusive clientele, Dallas is a dedicated Republican, drinker, smoker, and womanizer. He's also Breathed longest lasting character, starting with his college strip The Academia Waltz. He is the only character to have the distinction of being a main character in every single one of Breathed's strips. note  Later had his personality flip-flopped to become a sensitive guy, then flipped back.

Oliver Wendell Jones

The resident nerd of the area. Both a dedicated hacker and mad scientist.

  • Black and Nerdy
  • Black Best Friend: With both Binkley and Milo.
  • The Cracker: Hacked the White House computers on a regular basis, not to mention countless others.
  • For Science!: Pretty much anything he does.
  • Hulk Out: When he drinks a mysterious substance and transforms into a towering hulk. The effects quickly wear off, however. Opus was pontificating with his back to Oliver the whole time and never noticed.
  • Opaque Nerd Glasses
  • Why Couldn't You Be Different?: His father has this attitude toward him, especially when Oliver's experiments go wrong at his expense.
    • His mother is even worse, given that she's shown to dislike his hobbies of computers and science even when he's not doing much with them. She thinks he needs to me more like Michael Jackson.

Portnoy and Hodge Podge

Respectively, a groundhog and jackrabbit who sometimes hang out with Milo, Binkley and Opus. Early on, they also hung out with a couple other animals, including an unnamed bear.

     Recurring Characters 

Cutter John

A war veteran. He relies on a wheelchair to get around. Well liked by everyone and dated Bobbi until she left the cast.

Milquetoast the Cockroach

An obnoxious, thieving roach.

  • Bizarre Taste in Food: Being a roach, he loved to eat rotten, discarded food and other oddities. For example, before enjoying a Ding Dong, he asked Opus to rub it in the gunk under the refrigerator. In another strip, he recited a poem to himself while going to sleep.
    As I slumber, I think I'll number my favorite foods, short of lumber! Pickled eels! Last week's veal! Banana peels well congealed!
  • Creepy Cockroach: Not so much creepy as annoying.
  • Ironic Name: "Milktoast" means timid and quiet. Milquetoast the Cockroach is anything but.
  • Jerkass: He delights in angering Opus.
  • Made of Iron: He's squashed repeatedly throughout Bloom County and Outland, but always recovers.
  • Political Correctness Gone Mad: While registering to vote, he proudly proclaims himself an "Arthropod-American".
    • In Outland, when Ronald-Ann delivers a class presentation on Afrocentric history, Milquetoast interrupts with assertions about bug-centrist history.
  • The Prankster: In several strips, Milquetoast and his friends whisper bizarre subliminal suggestions in people's ears while they sleep. Milquetoast also squirts toilet bowl cleaner up Opus' nose while the penguin was sleeping, then manipulates Opus into feeling sorry for him.
  • The Trickster
  • Vocal Dissonance: For a tiny insect, he has a deep voice. In the cartoon "A Wish for Wings That Work", he has a basso profondo voice.
  • Wholesome Cross Dresser: He occasionally wears drag. In the cartoon "A Wish for Wings That Work", he's decked out in a wig and dress (stuffed with Milk Duds) while looking for the Cockroach Cross Dressers in Crisis meeting.


A basselope (basset hound/antelope) who appeared late in the Bloom County run.

Ronald-Ann Smith

A young black girl from the "wrong side of the tracks" during Bloom County. Became the main character during Outland before Opus took over and eventually disappeared from the strip entirely.

  • Back for the Finale: Appeared for one out-of-character strip during Outland's final months.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: She was usually very sweet during Outland, but had quite the mischevious streak.
  • Companion Cube: Her doll Reynelda. Reynelda's head was blown off by a stray bullet during a neighborhood gun fight. Reynelda speaks on rare occasions, such as after Ronald-Ann's conversation with Trump!Bill and during a tea party in Outland.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Disappeared two thirds of the way through Outland.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: She lives in poverty in a squalid, crime-ridden neighborhood.
  • The Pollyanna

Bobbi Harlow

A 20-something feminist teacher who was a main character during Bloom County's early years. Eventually became less and less important until she up and disappeared from the strip. Dated Steve and then Cutter John.

Lola Granola

Opus' fiance for about a year in Bloom County. Was a modern artist with a personality opposite Opus'.

Yaz Pistachio

Bobbi Harlow's teenage niece, who only appeared in the comic in 1983.

W.A. Thornhump

The rather dubious President of Bloom County, Inc. Whenever he appears, he's either desperately trying to raise Bloom County's (in-universe) flagging readership or perform damage control.

  • The Alcoholic: When Bloom County's staff submitted to drug tests, Thornhump's results showed that he consumed massive quantities of alcohol that day. The last panel of the strip shows Opus delivering Thornhump's six martini lunch.
  • Bald of Evil
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Will go to just about any lengths to boost the strip's readership. But rest assured that you definitely won't be seeing Nude Oil-Wrestling with Olive Oyl.
    "Tomorrow, more trash you'll never see here."
  • Fat Bastard
  • Pointy-Haired Boss: Literally, and predates Dilbert, too.
  • Punch Clock Villain: Arguably, he's only doing his job.
    • For the Evulz: He's fairly sadistic, sometimes giggling at some arbitrary, embarrassing decisions.

Major Bloom

Milo's Grandpa and a major character early on. Obsesed with fighting communism and making Milo into a real man.