Web Animation: Strong Bad Email
This episode, Strong Bad checks his email.
Keep sending me your questions, and I will make fun of you... I mean, answer them.
—Strong BadStrong Bad Email
, a subseries of Homestar Runner
, is the most popular feature thereof. The series started in 2001, and released its most recent 'toon in 2009 (but not officially ended; Matt Chapman plans to continue the series "when [we] least expect it"). The series has been known to suffer hiatuses
, the longest being the current one from October 2009 onward.
The series consists of Strong Bad responding to viewers' questions and suggestions, such as "Why don't you creat a montage?
", "What would you do different, if you could do it all over again?
", and the ever-popular "How do you type with boxing gloves on?
" This usually involves mocking the sender's spelling and grammar mistakes (in fact, the character of Homsar was actually created this way
), and quite often not actually answering the question.
Has a recap
page.Needs Wiki Magic
Aside from tropes carried over from Homestar Runner, this series contains examples of:
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: In "morning routine," Strong Sad confronts Strong Bad about the absurd amount of eggs he keeps in the couch, which include ostrich eggs, dinosaur eggs, and - lastly - "one of those brown eggs."
Strong Sad: There needs to be a better word for "weird".
- Bad Bad Acting: Many examples, but a particular one from "videography"
"Oh, little Jimmy... is playing lacrosse! Oh, he just scored the winning, ah, lacrosse...point! Oh, his dad was totally there and not at Applebee's.
Good shot, Johnn- Jimmy!
- Back from the Dead: The Tandy, the Compy, and the Paper. They all re-die shortly thereafter.
- Bait and Switch: The questions that Strong Bad is asked in the emails have a tendency to be taken in a different direction than the question intended. It is so common, in fact, that on the Homestar Runner Wiki site, it has its own page. Strong Bad probably puts it best in "1 step ahead", in which he is asked by someone named Alex, of Medford, NJ, to glue Strong Sad's hands to his face...
"I'm one step ahead of you, Alex. Though I decided to take it in a bit of a different direction."
- ...after which Strong Bad glues Strong Sad's hands to his butt instead!
- Compy Equals Monitor: The Tandy 400 and the Compy 386 are nothing but monitors connected to keyboards. To demonstrate this, the threats they pose in "Virus" and "Retirement" are nullified when their monitors are somehow damaged beyond (apparent) repair; no word or sight about the keyboards. Mildly justified in that they're modeled after the Tandy TRS-80 and the Compaq Deskpro 386 respectively, both of which had computer towers forcibly bolted to their CR Ts.
- Contested Sequel: In-universe, "tape-leg". Homestar doesn't like it because it's a short and rather dull episode, though Strong Bad is compelled to defend it.
- Censored for Comedy: In #124, "secret recipes", Strong Bad tells the email senders that if they want to be chefs when they grow up, as they say they do, he offers them a recipe "for cooking The C-H-E-_-T." When The Cheat retaliates against him, Strong Bad tries to cover it up by insisting that the blank letter is actually not an A, but a K: "The Chekt. My family has a great recipe for cooking The Chekt." As seen in an Easter egg, however, The Cheat isn't buying it, as seen in him looking at a cookbook for cooking "a wrestleman".
- Couch Gag: Strong Bad almost always starts out with a song or a phrase every e-mail. More often then not containing a pun on e-mail.
- Eskimos Aren't Real: Strong Bad has this to see in a Teen Super Sleuth parody, playing the group skeptic:
"There is no such thing as 'mysterious'."
- Fourth Wall Mail Slot: We shouldn't have to explain this.
- In Memoriam: Spoofed with Trevor the vampire, who was apparently killed before he could even finish writing his e-mail. Strong Bad then replays everyone's favorite Trevor moments as a tribute...which just results in a flashback to him reading Trevor's e-mail again.
- Killed Mid-Sentence: Trevor the vampire. Maybe. That's what Strong Bad concluded happened, anyway.
- Milestone Celebration: For every 50 emails, plus the 125th email.
- Mundane Made Awesome: E-MAIL. CHECKING.
- No Fourth Wall: Strong Bad frequently interacts with the perspective-bending Paper that tells the viewers to email Strong Bad, there are requent asides to the camera, andof course, there's the format-defying magic of Strong Bad moving the edges of the screen in at least two episodes.
- Obvious Stunt Double: Parodied in a email where a reader asks if Strong Bad has ever used a stunt double. "I've always done my own stunt work!"
- Overly Long Gag:
- DNA Evidence. It actually becomes a Running Gag throughout the entire website, not just this subseries, leading up to a 6-minute toon explaining the significance of these Arc Words. It did start here.
- "Crapfully Yours" is from the early years. It soon became an Overused Running Gag in the vein of "How do you type with boxing gloves on?"
- The Other Darrin: The sbemail "original" is a parody of this phenomenon.
- Noodle Incident: The entire joke of "personal favorites"
- Trapped in TV Land: In email #150, "alternate universe", Strong Bad celebrates his big "sesquicentenn-email" by constructing an alternate universe portal and visiting the various alternate realities of the website's body of work, where he meets all of the various duplicates of himself.
- Two Decades Behind: Strong Bad got his first non-command-prompt computer in 2009.
- Sarcasm Failure: In sbemail 160 Strong Bad shows off his Limozeen coloring book where he's modified the images to look ridiculous with characters on fire or with their faces melting. There's one image where the band members are arguing over a bear mask and apparently Strong Bad couldn't make it any funnier because it's colored in perfectly.
- Serial Escalation: While many of the first animations were just Strong Bad at his computer, that soon became a mere framing device for some montage or tangent.
- Wackyland: Sweet Cuppin Cakes, a hypothetical dadaist TV show that Strong bad makes up that somehow seeps into reality and becomes not only an in-universe actual cartoon, but also a real place in the universe, complete with its own dadaist golf course.
- Show Within a Show: Strong Bad's Email show is an actual show within the Homestar Runner universe. This becomes more complicated when many of Strong Bad's imaginted characters and places themselves become their own shows andothers become real people that the characters interact with.
- Wham Episode: Whenever Strong Bad's computers get destroyed, they tend to be these. The most memorable is "virus".
- You Make Me Sic: Strong Bad usually pronounces the misspelled words the way they're spelled, though occasionally he will tab up into the message and edit the errors. Among other things, the character of Homsar was born this way... his name was originally a misspelling of Homestar in an early sbemail.