Made of Bologna

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Image by oneuglybunny.
Used with permission.

An occasional hazard of cartoon characters is being cleaved in two, lengthwise or crosswise. Chainsaws, buzzsaws, battle axes, laser beams ... something will turn one whole character into two half-characters. Of course, depicting all the myriad structures and tissues in a living body violates the Law of Conservation of Detail and would also look mighty gruesome. Therefore, cartoon characters are made of a bologna-like substance that doesn't bleed and has no annoying details. Hacking a character to pieces becomes bloodless, and qualifies as Amusing Injuries rather than Squick.

Compare Made of Plasticine, which also involves bodies which lack the details and obstacles of realistic internal anatomy — but usually in a way that increases the Squick factor.


Examples:

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    Anime & Manga 
  • One Piece: A fan once asked Eiichiro Oda why Buggy the Clown doesn't bleed when he uses his Detachment Combat ability. The answer was more or less "This is still a kid's comic".
  • During a showdown between Super Saiyan Goku and Frieza in Dragon Ball, Frieza launches two Destructo Discs at Goku and misses. Goku distracts Frieza so that Frieza fails to catch a returning disc, which cuts him into pieces. Some blood spills and Frieza's red bologna innards are seen. Frieza survives this wound due to his Bizarre Alien Biology. This is subverted in the original manga, however, which actually depicts a bit of intestine hanging out of Frieza’s Torso.
  • The stinger to Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt has angel Anarchy Panty cut into 666 pieces by Stocking's katana. Each piece seems to be made of pink bologna.
  • Gamaran employs this trope, as despite much wielding of katanas, no innards are seen nor do internal organs spill out. One glimpse of brains occurs when a random passerby's skull is struck by Jaki's Epic Flail.

    Comic Books 
  • Of course present in Mortadelo y Filemón. Characters are often cut in half in diferent ways, with no viscera or blood to speak of, and it simply takes some glue, sewing, or even pressing hard the two pieces to repair the damage.
  • One of the many silly villains featured in the infamous Hostess Twinkie Cake ads was "Spindly" Klutz, who had the ability to somehow remove the right half of every person's body from existence. Of course, all the halved people just had a featureless, pinkish mass on the division line.

    Comic Strips 
  • The Thursday 5 June 2014 strip of Scott Adams's Dilbert has the company robot neatly detach Topper's head mid-sentence, revealing reddish bologna and a mounting hole. Fortunately, Topper being Topper, he simply remounts his head on its neck stump, and is good to go.

    Films — Animation 
  • The opening animations from Tom and Jerry: The Movie include one where Tom and Jerry are dueling with fencing swords. Jerry makes several rapid vertical slashes at Tom, who thinks he came away unscathed. Tom then falls apart in slices like a bologna loaf.
  • Heavy Metal: The three mooks that harass Taarna in the bar get their heads cut off in two deft strokes. The film shows one mook's headless body falling prone, revealing green bologna with a spinal bone and a universal conduit, and nothing else besides green blood.
  • This is very much averted by one of the residents of the Land of the Dead in Corpse Bride. He can split down the middle at will, but everything is visible.
  • Inside Out has a variation when Joy and Sadness are trying to wake Riley up from Dream Productions. They initially enter the set in a dog costume which, through the Reality Distortion Filter, looks like an ordinary dog; but when the costume splits in two the insides of the dog look like a ham leg.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Kung Pow! Enter the Fist, The Chosen One punches a mook in his torso so hard that a circular chunk comes out the other side. This is lampshaded by the narrator.
  • Al Yankovic's UHF has a promo for the TV series Conan the Librarian where Conan splits a teen in half lengthwise for returning a borrowed book late. The shot is brief, but reveals only reddish meat within the victim.
  • In Gamera vs. Guiron, Guiron kills and dismembers the monster Gyaos, then starts chopping the body into sections. Gyaos is apparently composed of solid tissue without bones.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In the Torchwood episode "Meat", a giant space whale beached on Earth is being harvested for its meat. No blood vessels or bones or anything like that are seen, just nice slabs of steak.

    Tabletop Games 
  • In the role-playing game GURPS, there is a powerful Advantage called "No Internal Organs". This means a character never suffers from complicated medical problems, because their interior becomes uniform undifferentiated tissue. (It's mostly found among plants and fungus, but...)

    Video Games 
  • In Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, every foe Raiden faces can be bloodily dismembered, but the innards shown are rarely more detailed than a dark red texture, sometimes with bones visible. The boss Monsoon can split his body into segments that evoke this aesthetic. Somewhat justified by the fact that everyone's a cyborg.
  • Happens due to the limits of rendering in Samurai Shodown fatalities. What isn't a black, empty void is an anomalous red 'flesh.'
  • This trope also appears in Mortal Kombat prior to the much more detailed engine of 9, again, due to visual limitations and saving cartridge space.
  • Used to save on rendering effort in Dead Rising, when zombies that are dismembered by some sort of sharp object don't even have a skeleton to speak of — their insides are clearly visible after such a cut, but all of it is a vague, pink mass with a visual effect like Spam or corned beef.

    Web Comics 
  • Goblins characters are drawn in this style to soften some of the Gorn-ier moments.

    Web Original 
  • This Very Wiki's illustration for Dead Unicorn Trope reveals that the legendary Unicorn, when bisected, is internally composed of an undifferentiated mass of pink flesh, rainbow-colored blood, and a Cartoon Bone where you'd expect a spine to be. Truly a wondrous beast.
  • SCP Foundation, SCP-3008 — "A Perfectly Normal, Regular Old IKEA". The Staff members inside SCP-3008 are seven feet tall, with short legs, long arms and no faces. When they're cut up they appear to be entirely made of skin, with no bones, organs or muscles.

    Western Animation 
  • Occurs in the Darkstalkers series when characters are cut in half.
  • Played with in The Simpsons' Show Within a Show, The Itchy and Scratchy Show. The titular characters are sometimes depicted made solely of red bologna, sometimes made of red bologna that can bleed, and sometimes actual organs are shown. This depends on how gruesome the scene was scripted.
  • Chuck Jones' Merrie Melodies short From A to Z-Z-Z-Z has a little boy daydream that he's a deep sea diver. While underwater, he's attacked by a tiger shark. He cuts it in half with a knife and it appears to be solid tissue inside.
  • Occurs to an even greater detail-conserving extent in the Tom and Jerry cartoon "Touché, Pussy Cat." Tom gets cleaved from head to crotch by a falling battleaxe, and the interior of each half is the same flat color as his fur.
  • The 1955 Sylvester cartoon "Tweety's Circus" has Sylvester tease a circus lion. The lion takes a swipe at Sylvester, who walks away, falling to pieces as he goes. Sylvester seems to be composed of grey bologna.
  • The 1955 Looney Tunes cartoon "Sahara Hare" shows Riff Raff Sam attempt to breach a fortress occupied by Bugs Bunny. Sam climbs up a plank toward the battlements, but Bugs uses a maul to cleave the plank lengthwise. Sam also cleaves lengthwise, exposing his beige interior.
  • The 1958 Foghorn Leghorn cartoon "Weasel While You Work" has Barnyard Dog douse Foghorn with a bucket of water in mid-winter, which is Instant Ice: Just Add Cold!. A hungry weasel cleaves the ice block with an ax, Foghorn mentions a splitting headache, then his body splits lengthwise, revealing ice-blue bologna interior.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants is often sliced and diced on his show. In his case, it's a Justified Trope, as real sponges have no organs and can regenerate tissue. However, he can show organs inside in accordance to Rule of Funny, such as when his brain is left exposed in "Scaredy Pants".
  • Whenever the titular character in Cattivik is sliced open, his insides appear as solid tissue.
  • The 1951 MGM cartoon "Daredevil Droopy" shows Droopy performing the old saw-a-person-in-half trick, with Spike as the one in the box. When Spike emerges from the box, his two halves go in opposite directions. Spike's lower half is featureless, uniform tissue.
  • The Woody Woodpecker cartoon "Operation Sawdust" has Buzz Buzzard cut lengthwise, showing Buzz to be hollow. A subversion, in that the hollowness is a reflection of Buzz's anti-hero character in this cartoon.
  • The Herman and Katnip cartoon "Mouseum" shows Herman powering a bladed wheel behind Katnip that shears off successive layers from the cat from back to front. Each layer seems composed of reddish bologna. Katnip is able to restack his layers to restore his body and resume the pursuit of Herman.
  • Three instances in Animaniacs:
    • In "Scare Happy Slappy," Walter Wolf is blown in half by a bomb, revealing that his innards are empty.
    • In "In The Garden Of Mindy," Brain is sliced to little pieces after getting run over by a lawn mower.
    • In "Rest In Pieces," Sid Squid is sliced in half by a statue's sword, showing his two halves have a grey interior.
  • In the Looney Tunes short "The Honey Mousers" Ralph tells Ned to check if the cat is still lurking about. When he does, the cat takes a swipe at him and he separates like slices of bologna.
  • In the Beany and Cecil episode "So What And The Seven Whatnots" when Dishonest John is sliced to pieces by Harpsy Mc Cord's harp, his innards are made of grey bologna.
  • One Pink Panther cartoon is "Put-Put, Pink" in which Pink builds a motorized vehicle that's mostly a brass headboard with a two-cylinder engine. When a traffic cop insists that he stop, Pink has insufficient brakes, and runs through the officer sideways. The poor lawman falls apart in grey slices.

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