Bravest Warriors is the second cartoon from Pendleton Ward, creator of Adventure Time. The show is about four 16 year-olds—Chris, Beth, Danny, and Wallow—who journey across the universe saving alien worlds with the power of their emotions. Did we mention this is from the creator of Adventure Time?As with Adventure Time, it started out as a short on Nickelodeon's Random! Cartoons, but never got picked up. It is now a web series being distributed on the YouTube channel Cartoon Hangover, with a new episode every Thursday. There is also a comic book series from KaBOOM! Comics, written by Joey Comeau (A Softer World). The show itself is written and directed by Breehn Burns (of Dr. Tran fame), and is executive-produced by Frederator Studios and Will McRobb and Chris Viscardi. The comics tend to be more family-friendly than the series.The production blog is here, and you can view the original short here. And the wiki for it is right here. You can watch Season 1 here, the Season 1 Minisodes here and Season 2 here. A third season is planned. Twenty issues of the comic series have been released, which can be purchased here.Now with a Characters page, and a Recap page, which is in need of some Wiki Magic.
Bravest Warriors contains examples of the following tropes:
A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Hyped all over the place with RoboChris; and Danny pretty much makes every mistake in the book that gets this result. In response; RoboChris makes friends with the rest of the cast and punches Danny in the groin.
All Just a Dream: Parodied in Issue #8 of the comics, where the entire Beauty Pageant subplot is revealed to be this. Aaaand then subverted a few pages later, making the reveal itselfAll Just a Dream, meaning the trope is both Subverted and Played Straight at the same time.
Wallow became musclebound and gained a few inches on the rest of the group.
Artistic License - Astronomy: Phobos and Deimos are presented as much larger than they actually are in the Martian sky; Deimos in particular would be hard to pick out without knowing what you were looking for, while Phobos would be much smaller than the Earth's moon.
Along with the above, nobody on Mars seems to have the anticipated height gains from growing up in 1/3 Earth gravity.
Though in a Dream Sequence, Danny punts several children much farther than would be possible in Earth gravity.
Blessed with Suck: Subverted. In "Lavarinth", the emotion lord "grants" the team's opponents the ability to read their minds, much to the chagrin of the team. Fortunately, they all become friends because of said power. Sorta.
Body Horror: The hamsters' reactions to the viral scrapings of the Aeon Worm that Ralph Waldo Picklechips feeds them. Their pupils dilate, go blank-white, and their faces contort painfully as their minds are warped to the Worm's will, forcing them to speak, "Never... Doubt... The... Worm." Every syllable is layered with disturbingly audible pain.
Picklechips himself gets the same eyes and a diseased face in Season of the Mitch, presumably from prolonged exposure to the same materials. Beth's face decays in the same way as the Aeon Worm attempts to take her.
Book Ends: The first time we see the Paralysed Horse, he says that he is unable to comfort Beth, for he is "just a horse". Then, as he sacrifices himself to save Beth and Catbug, he remarks that he is sworn to protect her, for he is "just a horse".
Cerebus Retcon: In the second story arc of the comic, Danny is feeling tremendous guilt for exploding the planet of sexism from the first issue, resulting in dreams were he tries to change the outcome peace-fully (he fails).
Chippendales Dancers: Unicorn Chippendales dancers appear in Beth's butter lettuce fantasy in "Butter Lettuce".
Early-Bird Cameo: Plum was featured in the comic as the fifth member far before she appeared in the cartoon. Also in issue three of the comic, the New Miami Hackers were mentioned by name before they appeared in the eighth episode.
Paralyzed Horse: Do not look back, its grotesque splendor is more than human minds can endure!
Energy Weapon: The Warriors summon weapons by rubbing heat-sensitive stickers on their suits. Danny has the Dog Sword, Beth has the Cat Lashes, Wallow has the Falcon Axe, and Chris has...Bee With Excellent Leadership Skills.
In the original short, their weapons weren't animal-themed. Beth still had a whip and Wallow still had an axe, but Danny had some shadow blades and Chris had a lightning sword.
Failure Is the Only Option: In Danny's dreams, he goes back in time to stop the team from destroying the planet of sexism and formulate a peaceful solution. Unfortunately, the planet's inhabitants kill themselves in a massive war that wipes 99.9% of them out.
Famous Ancestor: The Bravest Warriors' parents were called the Courageous Battlers.
In "Emotion Lord," Beth says that Chris was standing too close to the Emotion Lord for her to get an accurate reading. The reality is that the Emotion Lord is Chris, as revealed in "Lavarinth".
Further foreshadowed in "Time Slime," when Chris is the only one actually reacting to the emotional pain of the Fartsparkles Time Generator.
In "Gas-Powered Stick" when Plum kisses Chris, Chris is able to use his x-ray vision to see that Plum has two brains inside her skull.
In "Ultra Wankershim", Chris has a brief vision of the future, which includes many hints of things to come:
Plum in a monstrous One-Winged Angel form, which happens in "Mexican Touchdown".
A shot of Wallow missing an arm, which becomes a reality in "Season of the Worm".
A shot of Beth kissing a silhouetted figure, which has yet to happen.
A shot of The Emotion Lord crying, which happens less than a minute afterwards when he sees Beths again. This becomes double foreshadowing in "The Parasox Pub", where it turns out Chris completely destroyed his chances with Beth, and thus ruining the timeline, in "Merewif Tag" by missing Movie Night.
Forgotten Birthday: In "RoboChris", this is the entire reason why Danny makes an extremely clingy robot version of Chris in the first place.
Four-Fingered Hands: Pretty much everyone who has human-like hands, with the bizarre exception of Wallow, who has a full compliment.
For Want of a Nail: We find out in The Parasox Pub that the events of Merewif Tag became this: Missing movie night caused Chris to change his path in life drastically, and he ends up losing Beth forever and going insane as the Emotion Lord.
Funny Background Event: In comic issue #1, the Bravest Warriors bake two disturbing sentient cupcakes conditioned to fight each other to the death. Orange cupcake hammers green to pulp, but that's not the end of them. As the Warriors search for a sufficiently frightening movie, an undead, levitating green flash-burns orange with a death ray just as orange uses its bionic arms to retrieve a binder labeled "codes" from the Warriors' safe.
Which later ends up being actually relevant since the orange cupcake was piloted by the Warriors, and the green was being controlled by Sadness.
Future Me Scares Me: It takes a while for Chris to accept that the Emotion Lord is his future self.
Genre Savvy: In the first episode they encounter themselves dead and eventually the story has them leading up to how they died... where they die again leaving behind second corpses exactly like the first. At this point a few seconds later, a third team shows up and Beth says, "Nope." and they all leave.
Gentle Giant: Wallow likes bringing home aliens as pets and is trained as a Nursing Assistant.
Thumbnails of later videos often spoil earlier twists, for instance "The Parasox Pub"'s thumbnail shows Chris with Emotion Lord eyes.
In Season 2, they didn't even try to hide Jelly Kid's surprise return. Worse, all advertising for Jelly Kid Forever involved Jelly Kid's death, which is treated as a surprise in the actual episode.
Before each video, a short three-second "advertisement" coupled with some kind of dramatic score plays, usually an ad for future episodes. While usually this isn't that bad, after "Season of the Worm" and before the release of "Season of the Mitch", a short for the latter episode aired. Which happened to show the climax of the former. Including Wallow with his arm missing, which is a major spoiler. This would play before every single Cartoon Hangover video the viewer tried to watch, including "Season of the Worm" itself.
Mundane Utility: The dimensional wave device that Beth's father uses in "Hamster Priest" shows up being used as what appears to be a pesticide sprayer in "Dimension Garden".
Mythology Gag: The first issue of the comic opens with the Bravest Warriors destroying a planet to eliminate sexism like they did in the pilot episode.
Also in the pilot, the nigh emotionless aliens call Chris the "Lord Of Emotions". An Emotion Lord shows up in the second episode of the actual show. It turns out they're right about him becoming an Emotion Lord, give or take a couple hundred years.
Negative Continuity: Subverted. The first episode seems like the series will go this route, with two time duplicates of the Bravest Warriors dying, and seemingly getting stuck in a infinite loop. However, the third group decide to get the hell out of there, and the series has had strong continuity since.
Never Say "Die": Averted as Beth and the Horse flee the rampaging Aeon Worm.
The Emotion Lord can avert this pretty hard, too, in The Parasox Pub.
New Neo City: Many cities and countries on Mars are Earth names with "New" slapped in front.
Wallow: This happens every time you invent a time machine.
Once an Episode: Like the snail from Adventure Time, there's a mysterious man wearing a space helmet called "The Passenger" hidden in each episode watching the Bravest Warriors. He even manage to appear inside their home without them noticing him.
The basic plot of "RoboChris", in which Danny builds a robotic Chris to make the real Chris jealous in order to get him back for forgetting his birthday.
Out of Focus: Since the first episode, Pixel has since only appeared in the "Lost Episode", Sugarbellies.
Parental Abandonment: The Bravest Warriors' parents, who were a team called the Courageous Battlers, were trapped in another dimension called the See-Through Zone and have remained there for two years, hence why a bunch of teenagers are living by themselves. The first season finale hints that there may be a way for them to save their parents.
Random Events Plot: Almost all episodes seem to start at a completely random point in the middle of the story, and don't pick up where the previous episode ended in any way. Notable exceptions are the sub-plots about the Emotion Lord and Beth's father, which imply some sort of continuity, but again appear at entirely random points in otherwise completely disconnected episodes.
Reality Warper: Emotion Lords. They might also be Physical Gods. Not much is known about them except they're very emotional, and very powerful.
Thirty space chickens, go!
Five hundred Chocolate Puppies!
Red Herring: In "Dimension Garden", throughout the episodes the grub that the young warriors find is hinted to be the larva form of the Aeon Worm until its revealed that its actually Catbug..
However, the very end of the episode shows Ralph discovering the Aeon Worm in his Garden...
Screw Destiny: The stated goal of the Emotion Lord in "Parasox Pub." Chris appeared to manage it by finding a way to Take a Third Option rather than the ones presented to him.
Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: At the end of "Time Slime", the Warriors see that they've been killed twice trying to stop the malfunctioning time vortex, and decide to give up and go home.
Also, the rocket bus driver in "Memory Donk" bails out because he can't remember how to fly (unfortunately, he tries this in the vacuum of space). Later, Jelly Kid bails out over Neo-Mars City when Danny asks it to help fight the Memory Donk.
The opening of that episode references the repeated off world colony ad from Blade Runner.
The first appearance of the Emotion Lord, when he leaves, "The Concierge" is left behind. Take a good look at him, he looks suspiciously very similar to Peppermint Butler. "White pasty skin, almost completely round, wears a tuxedo, same eyes"
The Aeon Worm's gaping maw resembles that of the Sarlacc.
Stealth Hi/Bye: The Emotion Lord. He frequently pops up and leaves without expectation.
Speaking Simlish: The team speaks random gibberish in "Sugarbellies" until it's revealed that the whole episode was a plot to reverse said impediment.
Subverted Kids Show: While the original short is for kids, the internet series is confirmed to be a bit raunchier (think Adventure Time with no censors). Not surprising considering it's on a channel called Cartoon Hangover.
(from Butter Lettuce) Wallow: See that? This'll take hella fortnights. And you'll get prolapsed anus from sittin' there all day. AND I WON'T LET THAT HAPPEN! GO, FALCON AXE!!
(from Season of the Worm)Danny:MotherFalcon yeah, we're going after Mitch!
There's a character named "Wankershim" He tends to behave like, well...
Other examples include casual swearing, Aversion of Never Say "Die", and even in the first episode, Wallow having a sentient male AI in his left glove that is clingy and jealous with malfunctioning 'nads.
Took a Level in Badass: Although no-one was denying the badass credentials of the Horse to begin with, he ramps it up by receiving the power to shoot fire from his hooves, psychic armour and a crown, and a mean-ass hairdo '''and a beard!''' Also, he regains his ability to move his hooves and speak to Beth, though his face remains frozen in its shocked expression.
Soft tacos in general for the Warriors seem to come up fairly often.
Took a Level in Kindness: The original pilot has Wallow and Danny be almost interchangable Jerkasses to Chris, but in the show proper they're much more mellow and well rounded. To Wallow at least, Danny's still a bit of a jerk.
The Unintelligible: Everyone was this in the majority of "Sugarbellies" because the planets of the aliens asking for help were not align.
Vocal Dissonance: One hideous, slime-oozing, fang-mouthed alien newscaster has a very pleasant-sounding female voice.
Vomit Indiscretion Shot: Happens in "Butter Lettuce", when Wallow makes the Beth hologram 9000% sexier which is so hideous it makes Danny vomit.
In "Dan Before Time", when Danny was a kid, a bully hacker stole his dad's garage door opener remote and hacked it to make Danny vomit anytime he presses the button on the remote. Then the button got stuck.
This happens again in "Catbug". Danny vomits a lot.
Wham Episode: Lavarinth: The Emotion Lord is revealed to be an older version of Chris from 184 years in the future.
Hamster Priest: Ralph Waldo Picklechips is working on summoning the worm and Beth is somehow connected to the devices he's using to connect Neo Mars to the Seethough Zone.
The ending to Merewif Tag is also this.
Wham Line: From Hamster Priest: "Never... doubt... the worm!"
And right before that:
Wallow: (To Beth) This thing and your brainwaves.. they're linked.
Also in Merewif Tag:
The Concierge: Your timeline has been damaged by a dangerous man.
In The Parasox Pub:
The Emotion Lord: Chris... there is no you and Beth!
Later in the episode:
Puddingtown: But in the end, I really lovebeing an emotion lord.
Mitch: I am a proud, majestic horse...! Hamster: Horse? Mitch: ...And I doubt... THE WORM!
What You Are in the Dark: Played with, then given a solid conclusion... *ahem* The reason why Future Chris can screw around with events in flux (like his hair) but can't alter a fixed event (like Danny marrying Beth) is because of another Emotion Lord, Puddingtown, who acts as the Warden of the Time Police Prison (which, true to Future Chris' insanity, is a joke bar). All Present Chris has to do to allow Future Chris to alter events so that Beth will marry Chris and Danny will marry Plum is "murder Puddingtown in cold blood". While his 40-or-so alternate selves are watching them and a Space Chicken Animatronic Comedy. Chris could kill Puddingtown and the rest of his alternate selves would cover it up for him... And then Puddingtown starts angsting about how good but stressful his life is and how he always wanted Chris to be the godfather of his youngest daughter. Chris, against his own selves looking at him, spares Puddingtown, effectively sacrificing true love for love of his future goddaughter and moral principles. The other Future Chris don't take this well. Luckily, the psychological overload gives Present Chris the emotional power to break the prison apart by accident.