A comic about life in the US Army
Staff Sergeant Murphy. The title of the cartoon is a Shout Out
to Murphy's Law
, and how it relates to life in the military. But despite the exaggerated humor each cartoon is actually a pointed look at how the real-life Army operates both officially and unofficially.
Not to be confused with the Web Comic Murphy's Law
, although quite a bit of PVT Murphy's Law can be found online here
. PVT Murphy's Law can be seen every week in the print version of the Army Times
This webcomic includes examples of the following tropes:
- The Alcoholic: Implied to be quite a few of them in the Army. Every time Murphy's brigade rotates home from a deployment, a beer company executive can be seen bolting upright in bed because he felt a disturbance in the force from the soldiers thinking so hard about how much they look forward to their first drink in months.
- Artifact Title: Private Murphy got promoted long ago, and several times since then. His promotion through the ranks is typically reflected in the titles of the printed collections of the comics.
- Cross Over: A brief one with Air Force Blues.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: As mentioned above, Murphy expects one when he's told he is going to be fighting against an Airman during a boxing tournament. Unfortunately, as the airman is an unexpectedly huge brute, it does turn out to be a Curb-Stomp Battle, except Murphy's not doing the stompin'.
- Drill Sergeant Nasty: Several times. Notably a Take That was aimed at a Real Life Drill Sergeant Nasty who was demoted a single paygrade after being convicted of abusing his recruits.
- Honest John's Dealership: A literal loan shark at a car dealership is once shown asking Murphy about the length of his enlistment (presumably trying to gauge how much money Murphy could conceivably afford to pay for a car, so he can sell him the highest priced car in that range).
- Truth in television here most military bases are surrounded by similarly run used car dealers, stereo shops, etc., that exist only to prey on soldiers' wallets.
- Important Haircut: Murphy gets a buzz cut when he enters basic. And has to pay for it.
- It's Raining Men: S Sgt Murphy is a paratrooper, although the only times he ever uses this skill is during his training.
- Leeroy Jenkins: Murphy's battalion commander is implied to be one.
- Mildly Military: Murphy himself at times, on one occasion, he states this as the reason he doesn't like visiting Air Force units.
- Pin-Pulling Teeth: Murphy takes a grenade pin in his teeth and thinks, "This is how John Wayne does it! beat The Duke must have had a hell of a dental plan!"
- Battlefields Are Gymnasiums: One comic featured Murphy doing chinups on the barrel of an Bradley IFV. He got yelled at for it by the vehicle's commander.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: In one comic, Murphy is seen sitting on his cot, opening a Care Package, shouting "Mom sent commo!"
- When this one came out in 2004, radio comunications were a problem for troops stationed in Iraq.
- Second Love: As far as the comic's representation of Murphy's love life goes, Murphy's wife Anna.
- Snipe Hunt: Murphy gets sent on one of these as a new arrival to his division, told to fetch such items as "gird squares". Later on, after his promotion to sergeant, he assigns such a task to a newbie, but it backfires.
- Soldiers at the Rear: There's a comic about "Fobbits"; in a visual pun, it's Bilbo in a flack vest and AC Us (and a bag of snacks from the FOB's PX).
- Take That: One aimed at Kid Rock, and also one aimed at a Drill Sergeant Nasty who was demoted for abusing his recruits. The latter featured the Drill Sergeant tumbling down a flight of stairs (labeled with the Army Core Values) and landing on his face.
- Unmoving Plaid: The cammo uniforms are done like this.
- Visual Pun: Murphy depicted as an earthworm while trying to low-crawl (he gets told to low-crawl lower), Murphy opening a care package from home, while surrounded by vultures wearing Army uniforms, a giant cockroach in charge of on-base housing, you get the general idea.
- War On Terror: Yellowish-Orange, depending on if Murphy is deployed or not, considering his occupation. Typically only serves as background to the comic, which is mostly based around topical humor or bored soldier hijinks.