Good Burger is a 1997 comedy film produced by Nickelodeon Movies and released by Paramount Pictures, directed by Brian Robbins and produced by Dan Schneider and starring Kenan Thompson, Kel Mitchell, Sinbad, Shar Jackson, Abe Vigoda, and Jan Schweiterman. (Carmen Electra, Shaquille O'Neal, Linda Cardellini and George Clinton make brief cameo appearances.) The film was based on a popular recurring sketch on Nickelodeon's sketch show All That, with Mitchell reprising his role as an airheaded fast food cashier. The film is noteworthy for being the first theatrical-released film based on a Nickelodeon show. It is also the only film that fits that criteria that is based on a live-action Nickelodeon show. It was preceded in theaters by the Action League Now episode "Rock-A-Big-Baby".In the film, Thompson plays Dexter, a high-school student that is forced to work at Good Burger after crashing his car into his teacher's mailbox. The restaurant is also rivaled by Mondo Burger across the street, a menacing mammoth chain that could easily make Good Burger a piece of history. But Good Burger is not going quietly into that good night, as Ed has also concocted a special sauce that makes Good Burger the hottest burger joint in town, and Mondo is determined to steal the recipe and their customers. Dexter and Ed team up to beat their competition and end up unearthing a dark secret.
Tropes this movie follows:
- Actually Pretty Funny: How Ed and Dexter start bonding: Dexter tells Ed he wants absolutely nothing to do with him. Then Ed does his bizarre "Grape Nose Boy" bit, which gets a laugh out of him.
- All-Loving Hero: Ed's good-heartedness allows him to make friends with just about anyone who isn't pure evil (and even if they are, he still treats them as if their intentions are pure and good).
- Artistic License – Chemistry: Mondo Burger's "Triampathol" is an additive that somehow causes hamburger meat to increase in mass during cooking. Kurt admits that it is "way illegal"—indeed, it violates not only the health code, but also the law of conservation of mass.
- Avoid the Dreaded G Rating: Abe Vigoda's line "I think I broke my ass" and (to a lesser extent) the mental patient played by George Clinton remarking that the music in the mental hospital lobby sucks. Both of these lines were later rerecorded for TV with the euphemisms "butt" and "stinks," respectively.
- Back for the Finale: Notice when the crowd of employees and customers cheer for Ed saving Good Burger in the end, Heather can be seen hiding amongst the crowd (looking over Mr. Bailey's shoulder).
- Bad "Bad Acting": Pay close attention during Mondo Burger's demise, as you watch customers and patrons race out of the restaurant and it comes down, one man amongst the panicking crowd has the most calm, relaxed, subdued look on his face... in fact, he doesn't even really run out of the restaurant, he just casually slips into the crowd and makes his way out the door.
- Kurt and his henchmen are so hammy at times that they fall under this category too.
- Bad Boss / Mean Boss: Kurt, who runs Mondo Burger like a Nazi boot camp.
- Bedlam House: The main characters are sent there by the Big Bad after learning the secret behind Mondo Burger's...well, mondo burgers. Otis gets sent there also after he catches Kurt and his Mondo brats dumping shark poison in Ed's Sauce.
- Benevolent Boss: Mr. Bailey teeters back and forth between being an exact example of this, and being more of a reluctant example.
- Bigger Is Better: Apparently Mondo Burger's philosophy. Kurt's attempted solution to getting customers? Make their "already twice as big as Good Burger's" burgers bigger!Employee: But they're already—
Kurt: Bigger! BIGGER!!
- Big "NO!": Ed, when he stops the old lady from eating a poisoned good burger.
- Bookends: The movie begins and ends with Ed saying his customary Good Burger greeting.
- The Brute: Spatch (although a benevolent example) and "Mr. Big Huge Scary Man" at the Bedlam House.
- Burger Fool: Subverted for Ed, but applies for Dexter.
- Butt Monkey: Mr. Wheat, Dexter's accident-prone teacher.
- Otis counts as an Iron Butt Monkey. It's incredibly impressive to watch Abe Vigoda take that many prat falls, seeing as by now he must be in his early 200's.
- Canon Foreigner: Not counting anyone not connected to Good Burger in which the sketches took place, Dexter, Otis and most of the supporting staff never appeared in the sketches, although Kenan Thompson often did appear in the sketches as various customers (notably Lester Oaks, Construction Worker).
- Catapult Nightmare: Ed, after dreaming about talking burgers and then falls down a hole.Ed: (waking up) WELCOME TO GOOD BURGER, HOME OF THE GOOD BURGER. CAN I TAKE— huh? Whoa! A clock!
- Catch Phrase:
- Ed has "Welcome to Good Burger, home of the Good Burger, can I take your order?", and "Uh... no?"
- Kurt likes to warn people that "You mess with Kurt, and you go into the grinder." Also, whenever someone points out the obvious, he replies with "I'm aware!"
- Kenan, just like his character on Kenan & Kel, groans "Again with the [X]," X being something that he's tired of seeing/hearing. He also uses "WHYYYYY?!"
- Chase Scene: When Ed, Dexter, and Otis escape from Demented Hills, they get onto an ice cream truck. When the guys from the asylum try to follow, they retaliate by throwing ice cream at the windshield until it becomes too thick to see through.
- The Chew Toy: Roxanne, an extremely attractive Mondo Burger employee, who ends up suffering all sorts of injuries in an attempt to seduce Ed into revealing his sauce recipe during a double date with Dexter and Monique.
- Comically Missing the Point: Ed does this all the time. One example:Otis: I caught those Mondo brats dumping shark poison in our sauce.Dexter: Shark poison!?Ed: Why would they want to harm those innocent sharks?
- Comically Serious: Most of the Mondo Burger employees.
- Cool Car: The Burgermobile; an ironic case of this, seeing how the car is clearly a customized AMC Pacer.
- Cool Old Guy: Otis
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: Kurt, of the Machiavellian, Third Reich-esque variety.
- Crowd Song: "(Not Just) Knee Deep". There's even a cameo by George Clinton as one of the mental patients.
- Cloudcuckoolander: Ed is the definition.
- Heather as well.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: This exchange, after Ed explains how he helped bring down Kurt:Ed: See, I knew that if I took the can, there was a good chance I'd get caught. Then I thought that even if I did take the Triampathol to the proper authorities, Kurt would hire some high-powered attorney who dispute any charges brought against him or Mondo Burger, by manipulating the legal system. And the way that America's court system is congested these days, it would have taken months to convict him of anything. So then I thought, I just take the matter into my own hands and pour the Triampathol into the meat supply and let Mondo Burger be a victim of its own foul play.
Dexter: You thought of all that?
Ed: Yeah. I'm not stupid.
- Somewhat defied by the actual scene, where Ed drops a can into the meat vat entirely by accident, has a Eureka Moment, then grabs all the cans and pours them in.
- Department of Redundancy Department: When explaining how Ed caused him to crash into his teacher's car, Dexter says that Ed "skated into [his] vision sight."
- Disappeared Dad: Dexter's father.
- The Ditz/Idiot Hero: Ed.
- The Dog Bites Back: Kurt fires and humiliates Dexter for cracking jokes. Dexter later plays a role in destroying Mondo Burger and getting Kurt arrested.
- Double Date: Roxanne invites Ed on a date, accompanied by Dexter and Monique, hoping to seduce him into revealing his sauce recipe. Hilarity Ensues.
- Dream Intro: The film begins with Ed taking a customer's order, before finding a bunch of hamburgers coming to life and asking him to come with them - they start hovering in the air, bringing him up into the air with them before dropping him into pit; he wakes up just as he supposedly hits the bottom to the sound of his alarm clock.
- Drowning My Sorrows: Dexter does this with Good Shakes after he gets fired from Mondo Burger. Ed even asks him "Dude, don't you think you've had enough?"
- Dumbass Has a Point: An irate customer complains to Ed that he got his order wrong:Customer: I ordered one Good Burger with nothing on it.
Ed: That's what I gave you.
Customer: No... you gave me a bun. Just a bun! Look! There's no meat in here!
Ed: But you said you wanted nothing on it!
Customer: Well, I expected a meat patty!
Ed: Dude, a meat patty is something. You said "nothing." Fizz, is a meat patty something or nothing?
Ed: I win!
Customer: Alright, that's it! I am reporting your name to the manager!
Ed: The manager already knows my name.
Customer: Oh, I'll see you in Hell! (storms off)
Ed (cheerfully): Okay! See ya there!
- Escaped Animal Rampage: The reason Heather was committed to Demented Hills was that, "Small space aliens landed in [her] head and told [her] to break into the zoo and free the kangaroos."
- Even Evil Has Standards: Kurt facetiously tells his co-workers not to be rude to the elderly when Otis catches them poisoning Good Burger's sauce.
- Evil-Detecting Dog: Ed gives a hungry dog a Mondo Burger patty, but the dog wouldn't eat it for some reason. So Ed gives the dog a Good Burger patty instead and he immediately eats it. This begins to make Dexter and Ed suspicious about Mondo Burger.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Dexter can't at all wrap his head around why Ed bought him a gift out of the blue.
- Evil Is Hammy: Kurt, full stop.
- Fan Disservice: Ed wearing Victoria's Secret.
- Femme Fatale: Roxanne.
- Financial Abuse: Dexter takes more than half of the money that Ed earns from making his sauce, even having Ed sign a contract agreeing to let him do so. Dexter is promptly called out on this by Monique when she finds out about it.
- Food Porn: Considering it is about burgers, occurs, particularly the pre-title opening.
- Fun Personified: Ed finds a way to have a good time no matter what he's doing or where he's at, including a mental institution.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar:
- When Ed and Dexter hang out for the first time, Ed whispers "Wanna see my secret place?" Dexter looks him up and down with a disgusted look, replying "That's not what I had in mind!"
- Kurt says, of Femme Fatale Roxanne, "If anyone can get the sauce out of Ed, she can!"
- When being drilled on Mondo Burger protocol, Kurt mentions that his employees should forget their friends and families, because he is now both their mother and father. Dexter tells one of his fellow trainees, "Kurt must look awfully strange naked."
- When Ed is about to tell the contents of the secret Good Sauce and is tackled to the ground by Dexter "I like you as a friend and all but..."
- When Kurt offers Ed a job at Mondo Burger, Dexter says "That diphthong doesn't like you! He just wants to USE you!", to which Ed responds, "Well, that's not 'natural'."
- Ed ponders how corndog makers get the "Weenie in the corny exterior."
- When the fire truck shows up, the acronym for the fire department's name is shown as "B.F.D."
- Good Cannot Comprehend Evil: Ed is completely incapable of fathoming the notion that anyone has any sort of malicious intent and sees the good in everyone, even if it's not there.
- Halfway Plot Switch
- Heel Realization: Dexter has this after Monique calls him out for cheating Ed out of money.
- Hero Insurance: How Ed and Dexter get away with stealing an ice cream truck, destroying Mr. Wheat's mailbox twice, and endangering Mondo Burger customers by overloading the meat supply with Triampathol and causing the restaurant to implode.
- Heroic B.S.O.D.: Ed gets this after trying to follow Connie Muldoon's order for her family reunion.
- Hitler Cam: Kurt's opening scene.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: The illegal chemicals that Mondo Burger uses to enlarge their burgers cause the restaurant to collapse when Ed pours ALL of it into the meat supply.
- Horrible Judge of Character: Ed, due to being a Kindhearted Simpleton who sees the best in people. He does not realize that Dexter is scamming him and it takes him most of the movie to realize that Kurt is not a nice guy. Not to mention...Dexter: Leave it to you to make friends with a vicious psychopath.
- Humiliation Conga: The destruction of Mondo Burger.
- Ignore The Fanservice: Ed is so innocent and ditzy that he does this to a character played by Carmen Electra. It's kind of hard to tell whether he's not interested in sex (or anything of the sort) at all, doesn't know what it is, or doesn't realize she's offering.
- Ironic Echo: "Remember, when you mess with Good Burger, YOU go in the grinder!"
- I Want You to Meet an Old Friend of Mine: It's somewhat difficult to really believe that Kenan and Kel are playing two entirely different characters from their Kenan & Kel counterparts, especially considering Dexter is the straightman of the two, while Ed is the Cloudcuckoolander... much like their Kenan & Kel counterparts. Just try to watch this exchange without smirking:Dexter: Hey... you look familiar... don't I know you from somewhere?Ed: Ever been to Australia?note
- Jerkass: Kurt.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Dexter, who does improve unlike the very criminal Kurt.
- Jerkass Has a Point: Kurt was entirely right about Dexter being an incompetent, bumbling, sloppy fast-food employee.
- Jive Turkey: Dexter's math teacher, played by Sinbad.
- Kick the Dog: Ed of all people does this unintentionally to Dexter when he complains about the lousy day he had.Dexter: Man, I can't believe Kurt fired me from Mondo Burger. He yelled at me, he insulted me, he made fun of me...Ed: Boy, you must really suck!
- Kindhearted Simpleton: Ed.
- Large Ham: Both Ed and Kurt.
- Limited Wardrobe: Ed never takes his uniform off, not even in the shower. Except in the mental hospital.
- Literal-Minded: Ed.
- Man Child: Ed, again.
- Married to the Job: Ed, it seems. He wears his Good Burger uniform everywhere, even in the shower and on dates. See Limited Wardrobe.
- Motor Mouth:
- A customer (none other than Connie Muldoon) with a ridiculously long and complicated order, who causes Ed's brain (what little there is of it) to blow a fuse.
- Dexter, when he tries to explain why he was sloppy making a Mondo Burger. And when he got caught making a snidey remark and laughing. This is what got him thrown out.
- Ms. Fanservice: Carmen Electra, aka Roxanne.
- Never My Fault: Dexter, who just recognizing where he's seen Ed, blames him for the car accident that forced him to get a summer job to pay for it. He also blames him for his parents finding out he was driving without a license, which he shouldn't have been doing in the first place.
- Nobody's That Dumb: Rather than go along with Dexter's plans to expose Mondo Burger using illegal chemicals in their beef to make their burgers bigger, Cloud Cuckoolander Ed decides to sabotage the restaurant instead by pouring said chemicals into their meat supply, causing the patties to grow abnormally large and explode, turning the restaurant to ruins. When Dexter inquires about Ed's intentions, he explains that he knew if he followed through with Dexter's plans, he likely would've been caught, and even if he did escape with the chemicals, Kurt would have hired high-powered attorneys that would dispute any claims brought against him or Mondo Burger by manipulating the legal system, and also taking into consideration that because the court system is congested, it would have taken months to convict Kurt for anything, hence why he took matters into his own hands. Dexter is flabbergasted that Ed thought of all that, to which Ed says, "Yeah! I'm not stupid!"
- Obfuscating Stupidity:
- Ed explains that he poured the bottles of acid into the meat on purpose because he knew that Kurt would manipulate the legal system to his favor unless the cops discover the acid themselves as they did when the restaurant imploded; Ed then goes on to say "I'm not stupid," despite his blatant idiocy throughout the movie (as well as the All That sketch that the film is based on).
- Also, even though Ed comes off as dim-witted, he showed culinary genius, as he made a sauce that everyone likes.
- Oh Crap!:
Kurt: This can's empty. What an idiot. Stole an empty can.
- Dexter has these moments throughout the movie, such as when he's standing on top of a delivery van that's about to drive off.
- Kurt when Dexter tells him that Ed is on his way to the cops with a can of their illegal food additive. Dexter when Ed shows up to rescue him - with an empty can.
Dexter: Ed, you stole a empty can?!
Ed: (Cheshire Cat Grin) It wasn't empty when I found it!
- You can just see the Oh, Crap! expression teleport from the faces of the good guys back to the bad guys as everyone hears the overdosed burgers begin to explode.
- Offscreen Teleportation: Kurt somehow gets down from a catwalk in two seconds in order to bully Dexter.
- Out of Focus: This apparently happens to Monique: she's established as Dexter's Satellite Love Interest, who initially has no interest in him, but apparently that little subplot offers nothing to viewers, as many critics and reviewers of the movie seem to overlook her altogether.
- Overcomplicated Menu Order:Connie: Hello, my name is Connie Muldoon. I'm hosting a family reunion and my oven has run amok! I think it's the heat actuator. Anyhoo, I'd like to order... *Speech increases the more she talks* Three Good Meals, four Junior Good Meals, a seventeen-piece order of your Good Chunks, and on two of the Junior Good Meals, I need to substitute the Good Cookies for Good Pies. Now don't fret if that's extra, I'll pony up the overage. And, uh, oh, on the regular Good Meals, I need two of the Good Burgers to have ketchup, mayo, mustard, lettuce, tomato, but no onion, I've got an interview this afternoon. Let's see, that takes care of everyone but Uncle Leslie who doesn't eat meat but, of course, he does eat dairy, so I don't get it. Let's get Leslie a Good Chickwich with some Good Fries, and a Good Root Beer all to go. But I would like to have my beverage while I wait. Now, total me up.
Ed: [stares blankly with his mouth hanging open]
- Overly Long Gag: BLOOBITY BLOOBITY BLOOBITY BLOOBITY, BLOOBITY BLOOBITY BLOOBITY BLOOBITY, BLOOBITY BLOOBITY BLOOBITY BLOOBITY, BLOOBITY BLOOBITY...
- Ow, My Body Part!: After Dexter tackled Ed to shut him up from revealing the recipe for his sauce.Ed: Dexter? You're squishing my pancreas.
- Product Placement: A reporter briefly appears from LA's KCOP-13 (back when they had their own newscast; now they're owned by Fox and have no news); they were an affiliate of UPN at the time (this was a Paramount movie). Also, Mr. Wheat drives an Infiniti near the end of the movie, and there's a Coca-Cola machine at Good Burger.
- Police Are Useless: No cops turn up when Dexter and his crew hijack the ice cream truck to race back to Good Burger. And given how they and their pursuers create total mayhem on the streets getting there...
- Pop-Star Composer: The movie score was composed by the fantastic Stewart Copeland, drummer for The Police. The score contains numerous moments of guitar shredding, heavy rock riffs, synthesizers, and R&B vocal samples.
- Also, the movie has a cover of the song "Roxanne" in it, which was originally a Police song.
- Race Against the Clock: After escaping the mental hospital, Dexter, Ed, and Otis race to Good Burger before anyone eats the poisoned sauce.
- Rage Against the Heavens: Mr. Wheat has a brief moment of this after a giant burger crushes his car.
- Reality Ensues
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
Dexter: Now I know where I saw you before, you're the rollerblading nut who caused my accident!Ed: Uh, no?Dexter: You're the reason why I owe $1,900! You're the reason my mom found out I was driving without a license! You cost me a fortune, man! You ruined my summer! You ruined my life!
- Dexter dishes one out to Ed when he realizes that Ed was the rollerblading nut who contributed to his auto accident.
Monique: I know what this is, it's the contract you had Ed sign, y'know, the one you take most of his money? The money that he's supposed to get for his sauce?Dexter: No... yes. Look, I was just trying—Monique: You know, I can't believe you take advantage of someone who trusted you. How can you take advantage of a sweet and generous guy like Ed? And after he got you a ''job''?Dexter: It ain't even like that! I only wanted—Monique: Oh, I know what you wanted! You're not Ed's friend, you're just using him to scam a little cash on the side... you must feel really good about yourself. But don't worry, I'm not gonna tell Ed that you're cheating him.Dexter: (Beat) Why not?Monique: Because it would hurt him too much.
- Later, Monique gives Dexter an earful when she discovers the contract he had Ed agree to, which gives Dexter 80% of the profit from Ed's sauce.
Otis even chimes in with one simple word for Dexter: "Punk!"
- Rule of Funny: The reason behind a number of things.
- Running Gag: Dexter's teacher's property keeps getting smashed, crashed, and run over. All mostly because of Dexter and Ed.
- See You in Hell: "Okay! Seeya there!"
- Serious Business: "From now on, your life... is Mondo Burger. You can forget about your friends, you can forget about your family. Because Kurt is now both your mother and your father."
Dexter: Kurt must look awfully strange naked.
- Which leads to a wonderful Getting Crap Past the Radar line:
- Good Burger for Ed.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Dexter's friend after he hits Mr. Wheat's car.
- Skewed Priorities: Dexter's upset because he has to get a summer job? Dude, you're lucky you didn't go to prison for driving without a license!
- Just to hammer home how skewed his priorities are, he did almost go to prison, because his teacher (whose car he totaled) almost called the police on him. It was Dexter himself who came up with the summer job idea so he could pay for his teacher's car; his teacher agreed to that mostly because Dexter would hate it, so he didn't call the police. So not only are Dexter's priorities skewed with him being upset about his summer job, but he has a summer job because his teacher was being merciful!
- Smug Snake: Kurt, again.
- Straight Man: Dexter.
- Storming the Castle: Dexter and Ed's infiltration of Mondo Burger at the end.
- Take This Job and Shove It: A very pissed off and badly injured Roxanne does this after her failed attempt to get Ed's sauce recipe.Troy: I'm guessing she didn't get the recipe.
Kurt: I'm aware!
- Third-Person Person/Who's on First?: KurtEd: Who's Kurt?
Kurt: I'm Kurt.
Ed: I'm Ed.
Kurt: I'm aware!
Ed: You said you were Kurt.
- Timmy in a Well: A Subversion with a dog running up to Ed, who reads his barkings as "A bunch of clowns are stranded on the highway with a broken radiator". Dexter tells him not to be stupid and that the dog's just hungry. At the end of the scene, Gilligan Cut to a bunch of clowns, standing by a broken car, wondering where the dog went.
- Too Dumb to Live: Ed; It's a wonder how he manages to keep his job given the number of customers he puts off through the film through his sheer stupidity.
- Although later, he has Ultimate Job Security because his sauce is the only thing keeping Good Burger in business.
- Too Dumb to Fool: The efforts of the Honey Trap to get the secret sauce from Ed fail because Ed doesn't realize he's being seduced.
- We Can Rule Together: Kurt attempts to get Ed to work for him by promising a higher salary. His stupidity prevents him from taking the offer.
- Not only his stupidity, but Dexter warned him if Kurt gets the sauce Good Burger would go out of business. And because Ed loves Good Burger so much, he won't work with him.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: Dexter and Ed dress up as women in order to sneak into Mondo Burger.
- Ed took it too far by wearing a corset and stockings.
- Writers Cannot Do Math: Indeed there were clowns, but Ed was short one of five.
The trope page is already over? Is it because I'm black?