A single-panel newspaper comic begun in 1993 by cartoonist Jeff [=MacNelly=], best known for his long-running comic strip ''ComicStrip/{{Shoe}}''.

In ''Pluggers'', a cast of FunnyAnimal characters illustrate reader-submitted one-liners about "Pluggers": working-class, mostly middle-aged, largely rural people who "unceremoniously keep plugging along, balancing work, play and family life." An example might be "You're a Plugger when the most expensive piece of clothing you own is an NFL jersey."

It's not commonly known, but the five main characters have names: Andy Bear, Sheila Roo, Carl Rhinowski, Earl Houndstooth and Henrietta Beak. There's no reward for guessing that they are, respectively, a bear, kangaroo, rhinoceros, dog and hen. According to [[http://web.archive.org/web/19970208084918/www.pluggers.com/cast.html an old version of the now defunct website]], there were once more characters.

[=MacNelly=] originally wrote the gags himself, but made the shift to reader-submitted gags after receiving so many. He handed art duties to Gary Brookins in 1997, who also took over in the same capacity on ''Shoe'' after [=MacNelly=] died in 2000.

''Pluggers'' can be read [[http://www.gocomics.com/pluggers/ here]].


* TheAllegedCar: Apparently a fairly typical Plugger vehicle, if [[http://www.gocomics.com/comic/explore/1567210/2 this strip]] is correct.
* AllThereInTheManual / InformedAttribute: The now-defunct website listed the names and backstories of the various characters. These traits almost never showed up in the actual strip (for instance, Sheila is supposed to be an aerobics instructor).
* AsideGlance: Sheila's default expression.
* BigEater: Several strips make Pluggers out to be this. One example: A plugger's appetite suppressant is having a DagwoodSandwich before dinner.
* BlanketTugOWar: [[http://joshreads.com/images/10/10/i101029pluggers.gif "A plugger knows that one good turn gets most of the blanket."]]
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: Most of the characters listed in the archived character sheet above have disappeared. A cat couple also showed up in the 2000s, but have disappeared as well.
* TheEveryman: Andy Bear.
* FatAndSkinny: Andy and Sheila, respectively. Sheila is a constantly-bemused [[StraightMan straight-woman]]... straight-flyer?
* FlyoverCountry: Where Pluggers chiefly reside.
* FurryConfusion: Since the characters are drawn as anthropomorphic animals, but the ideas used in the strip are submitted by readers (i.e. humans,) the overlap can range from confusing (the bear taking a normal dog for a walk) to disturbing (the hen storing her jewelry in an egg carton).
** To take the confusion to massive levels, one strip says 'When a Plugger's wife uses the words "Honey" "Sweetie" and "Sugar Pie" he knows she's talking to the dog' yet the husband is a Dog.
** Lampshaded in this comic [[http://www.gocomics.com/pluggers/2014/03/21#.UyyQxqhdWuI here]]
* InexplicablyTailless: Everyone, but Sheila in particular stands out. At least [[http://web.archive.org/web/19970310024414im_/http://www.pluggers.com/images/06-23-96.gif one strip]] from the [=MacNelly=] era averted it, though.
* InterspeciesRomance: Andy Bear and Sheila Roo are married, as are Earl and Henrietta. Even more confusingly, Andy and Sheila have both [[http://www.gocomics.com/pluggers/2010/05/29/ kangaroo and bear offspring]].
* KangaroosRepresentAustralia: Sheila.
* MeaningfulName: "Sheila" is Aussie slang for a woman. And then there's [[PunnyName Henrietta]].
* NonMammalMammaries: Yes, Henrietta has breasts. One could even argue that a marsupial character shouldn't have breasts, either...
* NostalgiaFilter: Distaste for any entertainment made since you graduated high school seems to be a requirement for Pluggerhood.
* RougeAnglesOfSatin: Seriously, how do you do something like [[http://www.gocomics.com/pluggers/2010/04/09/ this]]?
* TheScrooge: Some strips try to praise plugger frugality but end up portraying them as this; given the lengths pluggers will go to save money, like using the same paper bag for lunch every day or [[FacialHorror using a disposable razor for months on end,]] the message is less "pluggers are frugal" and more "pluggers will do absolutely anything to avoid spending money."
* ShoutOut:
** In [[http://www.gocomics.com/pluggers/2001/12/16/ this strip]], the newspaper clearly has a ''Shoe'' splash panel on it.
** [[http://www.gocomics.com/pluggers/2003/11/23/ This strip]] is a pretty sincere tribute to Radio/PaulHarvey.
** [[http://www.gocomics.com/pluggers/2012/05/06 Tracy Byrd]], anyone?
* SmallTaxonomyPools with a touch of LazyArtist: A perusal of [[http://web.archive.org/web/19970208084719/http://www.pluggers.com/archive.html the older strips]] will show that when [=MacNelly=] was drawing the strip, there was ''much'' more species variety; elephants, bison, walruses, alligators, hyenas...but under Brookins' pen, outside of the core five it's pretty much just dogs and bears, with a smattering of cats, pigs and birds.
* ThisLoserIsYou: A strange case, as the traits depicted are supplied by readers of the comic. Possibly SelfDeprecation in many cases.
** For reference, common recurring themes in the comics are "Pluggers are [[FatSlob fat]]", "Pluggers are [[WorkingClassPeopleAreMorons dumb]]", "Pluggers are afraid of [[NewTechnologyIsEvil modern technology]]", "Pluggers are couch potatoes", "Pluggers are [[ThePigPen slobs]]", "[[DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment Pluggers are fat]]", "Pluggers have [[{{Asexuality}} no sex drive]]", "Pluggers drive [[TheAllegedCar rattling junkheaps]]", "Pluggers have terrible diets", "Pluggers require constant medication to stay alive", "[[RuleOfThree Pluggers are fat]]", "Pluggers are [[TheScrooge cheapskates]]", "Pluggers have to [[ToiletHumour use the bathroom constantly]]", "Pluggers are [[GrumpyOldMan old and out of touch]]", "Pluggers are always broke", and "[[OverlyLongGag Pluggers are fat]]".
** An alternative interpretation is that Pluggers are sincerely meant to be WorkingClassHero types, but end up being ''seen'' as losers and hicks by more "sophisticated" and/or snobbish readers.