The first five seasons of Red vs. Blue, with the official collection's name coming from the fact that they take place in the Blood Gulch level of the Halo series. The collection contains 100 episodes, as well as one Mini Series, "Out of Mind".
And one of the alternate endings to Episode 100 shows Church waking up after the tank shot all the way back in season one, along with Tucker and one of the other Blue soldiers, who wears green armor. Naturally, this is no longer in the running for canon.
Art Shift: Several scenes set in the distant past were done in the style of Marathon, a trilogy of FPS games made by Bungie back in the '90s. And, of course, the series gets art upgrades with each new installment of Halo.
Luke McKay originally began drawing his own fanart of the series and posting it on the main site. Later, he was hired by Rooster Teeth to do the comic strip on the site, after merely suggesting the notion.
In Episode 83, Grif arranges for Sarge's funeral and delivers more of a roast while Simmons tries to take over as Red leader. Sarge himself bemoans how he was cut down in the prime of his life, before being asked to get in the casket.
Church arranges for both his and Tex's funeral. Caboose delivers the eulogy. Church is less than impressed, and Tucker leaves due to it being "lame".
"Aw shit, and I was gonna be in charge of confetti."
"Yep. I'm Sister. Church's twin brother. I came here in a spaceship that came from the moon."
"I guess now we have two bases in the middle of a box canyon." "Whoop-dee-fucking-do."
"All I did was rub his neck with some aloe vera."
"Why are there 6(4) levers when there are only 4(6) directions."
"You ever wonder why you're here?" Used in the last episode.
Butt Monkey: Nearly the entire cast to some degree or another. Especially Grif.
Church: Omega is on the loose and I think he may have infected one of your guys! Sarge: Infected? Initiate Emergency Plan Delta men! * Sarge shoots Grif* Grif: OW! What the fuck?! *Collapses* Church: I didn't say who! I think it's actually Simmons! Donut: That's okay, that's how ALL our emergency plans start. * Sarge is kicking Grif*
Celebrity Voice Actor: Ed Robertson of The Barenaked Ladies appears as Captain Butcher Flowers in the 50th episode, and the series finale. Somewhat fitting given that the Barenaked Ladies' entertainment style is rather similar to Rooster Teeth's.
Color-Coded Characters: Mostly due to Halo's game engine, each character is visually identified with a color. This changes somewhat once the series upgrades to Halo 3, as the bonus armors and increased customization options allow for more variety.
Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Caboose, when the Berserk Button is pressed, goes on a killing spree, decimating the Battle Creek Grunts. He also has super human strength, being the only one initially able to pick up Andy. Church and Tucker theorize that this is "God's way of compensating."
"Kittens covered in spikes! That makes me angry!"
"My name is Michael J. Caboose and I hate babies!"
Sarge: Great Paul's Bunyan, he's like an ox!
Caboose: But I have no horns! Or lumberjack friends...
Curb-Stomp Battle: Usually any fight that Tex is involved in, including killing Church's teammates in a flashback in episode ten, and killing the Battle Creek Grunts in season 4. Caboose also effortlessly decimates the Grunts once his Berserk Button is pressed. And then there's the Reds vs. The Wyomings in episode 99.
Also, Medical Officer Frank DuFresne, who is immediately nicknamed "Doc" by Church because he can't be bothered remembering his name.
Evil Laugh: O'Malley's signature cackle while possessing Doc is an intentionally over-the-top parody of the Omnicidal Maniac character type.
The Faceless: Everyone, by necessity, as the Halo games give everyone helmets; The exceptions are the alien, "Junior", and Vic. Semi-lampshaded when Church asks Tucker if he's black, after learning his first name (Lavernius).
The Big Guy: Caboose is freakishly strong. Tucker says it's "God's way of compensating' because of his low intelligence and loose grip on reality.
The Chick: Sister is the only female soldier and will speak at length about her numerous sexual exploits.
Flanderization: Almost everyone, though Tropes Are Not Bad as this led to Caboose and Donut becoming even more popular, and funny moments becoming much more common.
Caboose goes from being just a bit a slow at the start of the series to borderline insanity, unable to follow a simple train of thought. Also, in a weird way, anyone possessed by Omega has in-universe Flanderization.
Tucker goes from being flirtatious to a sex maniac.
Sarge's mild bullying of Grif goes to outright attempts at murdering him.
Grif's initial laziness and apathy gets cranked up to a phobia of work.
Donut goes from being ambiguously effeminate to Camp Gay.
Simmons goes from teacher's pet to groveling sycophant.
Tex goes from being a skilled special-ops soldier to a legendarily powerful badass.
Doc begins a neutral pacifist without extensive medical training (but nevertheless treats Caboose during an active shootout), and ends a man panicked by any sign of conflict, completely incompetent in his supposed area of expertise.
Flip Personality: When O'Malley possesses Doc, their body frequently switches personality on a sentence by sentence basis; this is shown by voice and mannerism changes and camera angle changes. The two characters actually hold conversations with each other, or will cut in on what the other is saying to make some kind of wise-crack or amendment. For the most part O'Malley is in control of what they do, however.
Also happens when Grif saves Sarge's life from a headshot wound... using CPR.
When Wyoming is stabbed by Tucker, Gamma cries out "Reggie!"
Fun with Foreign Languages: Lopez's Spanish is intentionally bad, partly because it was obtained using an online translator full of mistakes.
Fusion Dance: The Freelancers and their AIs. O'Malley's name is even a portmanteau of his designation (Omega) and Tex's real name (Allison) to form Om-Alli. Subverted with Gary, as that's just a reference to the name of Burnie's late cat.
Gambit Roulette: By the end of the series, it appears that everything O'Malley, Wyoming, Gamma/Gary and Vic did was for the purpose of acquiring an Alien child and the sword that would elevate him to the status of leader of his race, so that O'Malley could possess the Alien and use his race as a weapon to win the war. The degree of planning and precision this would require, and using Wyoming and Gamma's time-bending powers to send them to the past and future in order to further manipulate them is implausibly ridiculous, thus keeping with the tone of the series).
Simmons: The Blues are probably gearing up for an enormous attack right now! At any moment, they're gonna come over that hill, charging, guns blazing, yelling...(Gus loses composure)...fuck!" (The Blues come running over the hill.) Church: FUCK!
Hopeless War: Played for laughs due to the fact that the teams are in a never ending game of Capture the Flag. The creators state that one side exists because the other side exists.
Humans by Any Other Name: Apparently "Shisno", the word for humans in one alien language, literally translates to "the feces of the feces of the foulest smelling creature in the universe". Or something worse. It's also used, understandably, as an insult.
The character translating it peters out when Church tells him that a skunk's feces doesn't crap. He probably had farther to go.
Tex and Sister. Being that all the characters use the same Master Chief player model (which is male of course) the only way the audience knows that they're attractive is through comments from the male characters (specifically Tucker). Though there was an episode where Sister took her armor off for a physical and the surveillance cameras in Blue Base caught it all much to the delight of Simmons and Sarge (though we the audience don't get to see).
Also, Tucker himself and his "striking metrosexual good looks," as noted by Captain Flowers.
Crunchbite, Captain Flowers, and Wyoming in Chronicles.
York in Out Of Mind.
Lampshade Hanging: Church does this after one of the (usually 5-10 minutes long) episodes ends on a cliffhanger:
Church: "Why is it that something dramatic seems to happen exactly every five minutes? I mean, I can't possibly be the only one out here noticing this trend."
The series became increasingly self-referential and fourth-wall breaking as The Blood Gulch Chronicles reached its end.
(Red Team is looking at a security camera terminal that is looking at Blue Team's base)
Sarge: "Simmons, what're they saying?"
Simons: "I have no idea. I can't find the volume on this monitor. And without any sound it just looks like a bunch of helmets bobbing up and down."
Sarge: "Is that how they talk? They look ridiculous."
Left the Background Music On: Played with when music begins to drown Church out and he angrily demands to know where it's coming from — cue the Warthog coming over the hill blasting mariachi music on the stereo that Lopez left on. This turns into a Running Gag whenever the Warthog shows up, until the radio is broken in the season after Chronicles.
Grif may be the patron saint of this, given his state as the physical Butt Monkey and Sarge's constant attempts to put him in harms way. At one point he takes a shotgun round point blank to the chest, and shortly after takes a Five Rounds Rapid to the face, twice. He is fine.
In Chronicles, we have "Team-killing fucktard" and "Parabola of Mystery."
In Out Of Mind, we have "That's part of what makes us human."
Once an Episode: Or once a season to be more specific. Once Tucker's "Bow-Chicka-Bow-Wow" catchphrase is introduced, he says it once and once only in each season (except for multiple times in one episode of season four).
Only Sane Man: Church, who is usually the only person to both understand when a crisis is happening and be motivated enough to do something about it. Most of the other characters are either one but not the other, or neither. Tex might qualify in some episodes, but she has a habit of going Axe Crazy, and often pursues her own agenda to the detriment of the others.
Our Ghosts Are Different: Church and Tex as of the end of Season 1 onward. Then it turns out they aren't ghosts at all. Washington is incredulous at everyone's belief that they are- reacting in much the same way a person would in Real Life.
Rule of Funny: Whether or not people can understand Lopez tends to be based on how funny it is (most notably O'Malley, who is generally able to understand Lopez perfectly, and yet can still be tricked into insulting himself in Spanish).
Rule of Three: The running "Son of a bitch" gag is usually done three times in a row.
Tucker never gets the sniper rifle. The first time he did, he accidentally shoots Tex in the ass. Then he Took a Level in Badass with it.
After this, Tucker's obsession with using the sniper rifle died down significantly. The fact that he found his own badass weapon (the Sword) also had something to do with it.
Church's horrible aim, especially with the sniper rifle. He usually only hits people by accident, or when the Rule of Funny makes it possible. In Reconstruction this gets Flanderized to the point that he fires an entire clip at an enemy two feet away and misses every time.
I swear to God, I think somebody fucks with the sights on this thing when I'm not looking!
People who die say "HURK!...blehh." People react to hearing explosions by yelling "SON OF A BITCH!"
In the "Kill Them All!" ending, everyone says, "SON OF A BITCH!"
People being possessed say "HEEGAKURGURK".
Tucker gets covered in "black stuff" whenever going through teleporters.
Shotgun! (shouted by either Grif or Simmons every time a new vehicle shows up). Followed by "Fuck!" from whomever didn't win.
Shout-Out: So many that it's probably not feasible to list all of them.
Donut: Maybe, that blue guy who got killed by the tank, came back as a ghost, and now he's possessing Lopez's body. That could also explain why Sarge went nuts when we had the prisoner; the blue ghost probably possessed him too. And the jeep going nuts was probably just a weird set of coincidences, while the guy learned how to use Lopez's body.
Simmons: I think I like the ray beam idea better.
Grif: Yeah rookie, your idea sounds a little dumb.
Most famously, episode two's "You mean like a puma?"
With regards to Red Bull, O'Malley says it is the taste of oblivion. And disgusting.
In Episode 44, the characters discuss Hollywood post-apocalypse cliches.
Tucker: Naw. Hollywood doesn't understand apocalypse. They think that just one thing from everyday life goes away and that changes everything. Like in Road Warrior it was gas, and in Waterworld it was land.
Talking to Himself: Several times, given that people play multiple parts. Burnie Burns plays Church, Lopez, Vic, and other voices when needed; he also does foley and sound effects with his own voice, such as grenades hissing and ominous wind. Matt Hullum plays Doc, Sarge, and Wyoming. Later, Nathan Zellner plays Crunchbite and Andy, and Jason Saldana plays Tucker and Junior.
Combined to a degree with Talking To Them Self when O'Malley possesses a character; whether O'Malley has what could be considered a separate voice from the possessed regular character varies by character/actor.
The first half of episode 43 is a climactic confrontation that gathers most characters from the series thus far. Of the ten characters who speak in this scene (including O'Malley), Burns (Lopez, Church, Red Zealot) and Hullum (O'Malley, Doc, Sarge, Wyoming) play all but three (those being Simmons, Grif, and Tucker).
Throw It In: Many lines, including one notable case where Donut in the script was supposed to just scream once, but the actor decided that instead he'd run around babbling incoherently while the other characters delivered their lines. Most of the time the cast agrees that what was improvised was better than the actual script.
Took a Level in Dumbass: Caboose started out in the series much more normal; but the creators decided to just make him dumber and dumber over time. As a result, he's one of the most beloved characters in the series. There is an in-universe explanation that he became this way due to having O'Malley screw with his mind and witnessing Sheila blow up, but he was still somewhat stupid anyway.
Two Act Structure: The second half of the Chronicles is far more plot-oriented (going so far as to induce a revision of some of the sillier gags from earlier in the series) and ends on a relative downer.
Voodoo Shark: The explanation for the Yellow Church in episode 52 given in episode 100 breaks internal consistency in a bunch of different ways. It's implied in season 10 that Church looping through time never actually happened, and in fact was actually a simulation presented by Gamma.
According to Word of God, there was originally a concept in which the characters, in preparation for battle, would call out "Go Red/Blue for battle!" This would trigger a Transformation Sequence in which the character's armour would change to the standard red or blue, making the battles appear more like actual multiplayer games.
The story was originally going to be about the Reds, with Church and Tucker always observing from the cliff and making comments, a la Statler and Waldorf.
And Show It to You: A variant in Episode 10, where a man is killed with his own skull being used to beat him to death. Except the way Tex is said to have done this (tearing out the skull of the victim) doesn't seem physically possible. (Which were essentially the victim's last words.)
"Yep, he's definitely captured... or dead... captured or dead. (gasps) Or captured and dead!"
Eskimos Aren't Real: Episode 2. It's even the reason why they end up naming the vehicle the "Chupathingy".
Grif: No, like a puma. It's a big cat, like a lion. Sarge: You're making that up.
Later in the same episode:
Sarge: (pointing at the front of the Warthog) Look, see these two two hooks? They look like tusks, and what kind of animal has tusks? Grif: A walrus. Sarge: Didn't I just tell you to stop making up animals?!
Knife Outline: Tex's introduction, using bullets against a wall, and Caboose as the outline.
Luke, I Am Your Father: During a near-death experience, Sarge regretted never telling this to Grif... to mess with him one last time.
Near Death Experience: Sarge has one after being shot through the head by Caboose while possessed by Church. He has a conversation with the "angel" that is Church before being revived. Subverted in Season 8. Apparently he wasn't half-dead, but in Recovery Mode on his armor.
Dude, Not Ironic: In the finale, the majority of the cast has an (off-screen) two-hour discussion about whether or not the situation they found themselves in was ironic. The opening lines to the discussion produce several examples of things which which aren't ironic, including this gem from Caboose:
"I think it would be ironic if we were all made of iron."
Due to e-mail requests and concerns about younger audiences, episodes of the second season had fewer expletives in general, and bleeps over those that made it in. This caused an even larger backlash from people demanding the swearing be put back in. Rooster Teeth, as explained in the second season DVD commentary, responded by introducing Caboose's mental image of Church, who swore more than any other character. Third season episodes were offered in censored and uncensored versions before the idea of censorship was abandoned.
Most of the swearing is intact on the episodes shown on Halo Waypoint; however a joke in episode twenty which probably could be considered particularly offensive was bleeped out.
Bad Bad Acting: Donut's play for explaining why the group is in the future.
Bound and Gagged: Tex is tied to a tree with rope thicker than most people's arms when captured by O'Malley.
Breaking the Fourth Wall: In Episode 39, when Donut is talking to Tucker after Doc/O'Malley shot him, and explaining why they can't make him a robot body to ease his pain.
Donut: We can't. We're out of parts because we overused that joke!
Gone to the Future: The entire cast, though Church takes a longer time than most. Subverted in The Recollection, when it's revealed that time travel is one of the training exercises, but not a real thing that happens.
Human Ladder: Sarge and Caboose form one to see into a high-level window.
I Am Not Shazam: A bit of an inversion In-Universe: When Tex explains that every member of Project Freelancer was codenamed for a state, Tucker responds by asking the soldier nicknamed Tex what her codename was. She responds, "Nevada." Plenty of fans believed her, though in their defense the series seemed goofy enough for that to happen, and she delivers the line completely straight.
I Can't Do This by Myself: Tex has to rope in the Reds and Blues to carry a bomb for her because she doesn't have the upper body strength in her current body.
Obstructive Zealot: The Red Zealot, the most fanatical and devout of the Battle Creek Grunts to their flag-worshipping religion. He's just not very good at the "obstructive" part.
The Quest: Tucker goes on one with the "Great Weapon" (his Laser Blade) at the behest of the Alien, with various "Great" things in parody of "The Great Journey". Subverted in that the only actual quest was to get him pregnant.
Donut: Caboose, stop reading your stage directions.
Caboose: You told me I was supposed to read anything with my name in front of it.
Donut: Just the lines, not the blocking. You're ruining my big debut!
Caboose: I do not think we are meshing, artistically. I think you should talk to my agent.
Set Right What Once Went Wrong: Church in Episodes 50-52, failing every time to do anything but create the situations or fail to make any impact at all. With the revelation that the time travel there was a torture scenario in later seasons, however, this is something of an aversion in practice.
Stable Time Loop: Episodes 50-52. Subverted. In The Recollection, it's revealed that the entire time loop was just a torture simulation by Gamma. The extra Churchs, however, were due to Gamma's use of the time dilation unit to keep him out of Wyoming's way.
The Slow Path: In season 3, Church becomes trapped in the past and must wait until he catches up to the present...which takes about a thousand years. Fortunately, he has a robot body, which still somehow grows a beard. However, it could've been from Gary's deceit, since the whole time loop for Church with the bomb really didn't happen.
Cassandra Truth: Sheila, a tank, rolls behind Sarge, being watched by Donut, Simmons, and Grif, but he refuses to believe it is there, and the other Reds except Simmons also decide not to say they know. This extends to the point where Sheila is firing at the base after Simmons had his temporary Hazy Feel Turn.
Cranial Processing Unit: Lopez the robot has his body blown up and spends the season as a disembodied head. Near the end of the season Sarge wants to retrieve a secret message that was hidden in his databanks, Grif asks if the data would actually be in his head, and Sarge cites the logic behind this.
Defictionalization: In Episode 59, while he, Simmons, and Donut are treating Grif like "one of those ducks at the shooting gallery," Sarge declares that "this is the best game since Grifball!" Then came Halo 3, and the Forge map builder, and the rest is history.
O'Malley: ...Now, suddenly it's too loud. I preferred it when it was quiet.
Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: In Episode 62, Simmons tries to convince Shiela that she was supposed to protect Blue Base against "space pirate cowboy monkey ninjas" who were trying to round up some cattle.
Darker and Edgier: The tone is much more serious than the rest of the Blood Gulch Chronicles, barring a few jokes by York.
Foreshadowing: In "Out of Mind", York refers to the fact that "Reginald" always told stupid knock knock jokes in reference to the merger between A.I.s and their partners. Astute viewers will take this, the fact that York says "Speak of the Devil" after Wyoming is mentioned, and the fact that "O'Malley" is a portmanteau of Tex's real name (Allison) and Omega, in order to realize that the time bending, knock-knock joke spouting A.I. Gary is actually Wyoming's partner.
P.O.V. Sequel: This miniseries explains what Tex was doing after Crunchbite died.
Vitriolic Best Buds: York and Delta spend almost all their mutual screentime snarking at each other, but it's clear they're fond of each other especially since Delta is willing to potentially sacrifice his own existence to ensure York dies comfortably.
Achievements in Ignorance: While chasing O'Malley in Caboose's head in Episode 100, Church manages to achieve on Caboose's ignorance.
Church: Alright "Tucker", quick. I need you to jump out there and kill 'em with your sword. If they die in here, they get forced out of Caboose's head.
Church: Well what about after? You think Omega's just gonna stop after he gets a whole species for an army? He's gonna take over everything Tex, and you're not gonna be able to stop him!
Bittersweet Ending: Tex betrays the others and tries to help Wyoming and Omega escape with the alien. Instead she, and about a third of the speaking parts in the show, are seemingly killed in a massive explosion. The Freelancer plot is thwarted, but Church is left embittered and everything that's happened seems to have been for nothing. On the plus side, Grif finally gets shotgun!
Buried Alive: Sarge allows this to happen to himself in Episode 83 when his dedication to Red Command orders causes him to think he's been killed in action.
"Insert Quarter": Sarge tries to call for support from Command, and when Vic proves uncooperative, Sarge destroys the computers controlling Blood Gulch, which then proclaim him the winner of "Red Vs Blue", the Japanese credits for which then roll. The episode then cuts to a Halo 2 postgame screen with the kill/death stats of the eight major characters throughout the series (Caboose's kills are at -1 because a teamkill subtracts from your score, Tex's kill count is at Halo 2's maximum of 99, etc.), revealing the whole thing as "the weirdest [death]match [they]'ve ever played". After some Xbox Live-style banter (which really makes it unclear whether it's the characters talking or just the creators using their handles in a game), they decide to play another match with "same teams" but a "new map".
And, as a matter of fact, they do. As of Recreation, the Blues and Reds have been resettled at Valhalla.
"Invasion": Starts the same way as "Fight! Fight!" but before Sarge can finish mocking the Blues, he is blasted by a Banshee. Everyone is killed by Aliens, who then proceed to take over the bases and act out the events of Episode 1.
"RubySlippers": It's revealed that the entire series was a dream being had by Church back during Season 1, having only been knocked unconscious by Sheila's cannon fire. He describes his dream to Tucker, Caboose, and Jacobs, who he apparently forgot about, before Simmons and Grif show up. Church tries to speak to them about the events of his dream, but they just hose the Blues down with machine gun fire, killing them all. The Reds (complete with Sarge's original, nasally voice) then prepare to move on to the next zone.
"Tex Wins": When Church screams for Tex to come back, the ship turns around (with Andy presumably having been deactivated). The ship then fires a missile at the Blood Gulch soldiers, killing them all.
"Where Are They Now?": The death scenes from "Fight! Fight!" play in sequence, but as each character is killed, a short caption comes up, revealing a strange future for each.
Multitasked Conversation: In Episode 88, before Sarge and Donut find Grif and Simmons after they fall into the cave beneath Blood Gulch, Sarge communicates with Simmons via their helmet radios. Donut's radio is broken, so he is completely unaware Sarge isn't talking to him.
Noodle Implements: According to Episode 100, "Emergency Plan Traitorous Simmons Number 11" involves a steamroller.
Spanner in the Works: Tucker and Sarge in the finale. To elaborate, Tucker's acquisition of the energy sword gave him the ability to remember events from alternate timelines created by Wyoming's temporal device and kill him. Sarge then leaves a bomb in the Pelican simply to kill the Blues, and in the process stops Omega's plan to conquer the universe.
The Woobie: Donut becomes an in-universe example when the other characters briefly believe him dead and spend some time lamenting their deep affection for him. Even Church admits to having liked him. Church doesn't like anyone!invoked