Jon Jafari is JonTron, a video game critic on Polaris. Using a cheerful, energetic style and plenty of cutaway gags and visual puns, he talks about certain elements of video games, good and bad, and occasionally reviews specific titles. His sidekick is a green parrot named Jacques, who talks in a vaguely robotic voice, has glowing red eyes, and offers stoic commentary to contrast Jon's boundless energy. Crucially, he avoids games exhaustively covered by other reviewers (with a few exceptions from the NES era), focusing rather on early polygonal titles from "gaming's adolescence"; in a sense, Jon could be considered a newer generation of internet critic. Along with PeanutButterGamer, he is one of the co-founders of the resurrected Normal Boots website.In the earlier days he was rather serene, criticizing games with little to no anger or emotion, but became considerably more outgoing and energetic as the series went on (with Unfazed Everyman moments to lead the reviews along). He uses a lot less profanity than most others in his profession, and reacts to games he dislikes with exaggerated confusion (and sometimes sadness or disappointment, or less often, outrage), and he relies on his own sort of Surreal Humor to stand out from the crowd.He claims to have been inspired mainly by The Angry Video Game Nerd and Spoony. Then he photoshopped them making out.Jon has been inducted into That Guy with the Glasses, specifically Blistered Thumbs (naturally). He also revived his second YouTube channel, JonTronLoL, where he casts League of Legends games with all his characteristic energy.In the summer of 2012, Jon started a new YouTube channel with Egoraptor, called Game Grumps, wherein they play games and hang out. He left the show on June 25th, 2013, and was replaced by Danny of Ninja Sex Party.Not to be confused withProtonJon.
Achievements in Ignorance: Jon is somehow able to play Minecraft on Super Nintendo by putting in a Metal Gear Solid 3 box and taping a Gamecube controller to the controller slot. Eventually lampshaded near the start of his video on the Bubsy series.
Jon (trying to appease Jacques): Jon, that doesn't go there, you silly bitch!
He's also seen playing games after putting them into the console sideways, upside down, missing the console entirely, submerging both the console and cartridge in water, and on one occasion putting the console on the cartridge (fitting it into the slot after a moment).
Jon's grasp on computing technology is sketchy, too; rather than consult a FAQ for King's Quest, he coded the entire GameFAQs site from scratch.
Jon is also able to watch episodes of the live action Goosebumps by inserting the novels of each episode into several different consoles.
In a more realistic sense, Jon manages to advance further into Takeshi's Challenge when the microphone on the second controller picks up his screaming.
Awesome, but Impractical: When Jontron discovers that there is a combo list In Aquaman Battle for Atlantis, he notes that they are pointless because he was able to beat every enemy by just mashing the A button.
To The Bat Noun: Did Aquaman lose his hand at the Aqua-Mill? "Gotta get those Aqua-Union Benefits! Aqua... Aqua-Dental." (falls silent)
Bleep Dammit: The quick time event video starts with him announcing a new series called "Sh!t That F*cks Games Up". In the caption it's censored correctly, but when Jon says it out loud, every word except "shit" and "fucks" is censored.
Paul Ritchey from Continue has made several appearances in some episodes, such as Foodfight! and Conan the Barbarian.
Chris "Kirbopher" Niosi makes a vocal cameo in the Goosebumps episodes. This is following Jon's appearance on Niosi's own show, TOME, as the voice of Sniper Wheel.
Candid Camera Prank: The second 'Gaming in Public' episode. To prove that people would exaggerate the (alleged) harmfulness of video games, Jon created a bogus petition claiming the Nintendo 3DS caused blindness in children (featuring, among other things, the phrase "Heil Hitler") and asked random passersby to sign it for him. All of them signed without reading... and one of them signed even after having read it. Jon, naturally, crowned him King.
Canon Immigrant: We already knew Jon doesn't truck with this type of character, as shown in Game Grumps (his response to Kimi from Rugrats). Then comes along the PAL Home Alone game with a Distaff Counterpart for Macaulay Culkin, along with a pair of Ambiguously Brown playmates. The plot thickens.
Jon: Don't you remember these iconic characters from the film? "Kelly"? "Carl"? "Carly"? My—my favorite scene with them was this one: (horrific explosions)
Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Every single episode will have you wondering if Jon is cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs.
Cluster F-Bomb: When Malkovich offered to take calls from viewers on Malkovich's Gaming Guilty Pleasures, all but one of the callers replied with a simple "Fuck you." The one who didn't asked him a valid question, but followed it with an inquiry about his mother having a penis.
Credits Gag: At the end of his Nuts & Bolts review, he lists Jon Jafari as playing himself, Jacques, Banjo-Kazooie, the walls, and Trickleham Moose.
Cultured Bad Ass: Jon has displayed a distinct interest in Greek and Roman history.
Also apparently speaks *excellent* Japanese. At the end of Takeshi's Challenge, he wrote a letter under candlelight, sealing it with a wax stamp, and delivering it, on camera, all while narrating in perfect Japanese.
Cyborg: Jacques appears to be a biological parrot, but Jon did...something to him to make him partially machine. This serves to make Jacques way cooler and funnier than if he was just a regular bird sidekick.
Deep-Immersion Gaming: Parodied; Jon is seemingly sucked into his Joe & Mac cartridge, only to reappear in his house a moment later. Jacques asks how he managed to escape.
Jon:I just left.
Brick Joke: Turns out the characters from the game can " just leave" too. The episode ends with a dinosaur boss walking into Jon's living room.
Demoted to Extra: Jacques who is appearing a lot less often in Jon's videos since he returned from Game Grumps. Originally he starred as Jon's sidekick and often reviewed the games along with Jon. Since 2013, he is either completely absent from some episodes or only makes brief cameos.
Discriminate and Switch: Jon noting the lack of mermaids in Aquaman; there's nothing in the city but shirtless mermen.
"Maybe Aquaman was trying to tell us somethin' about himself by wearin' those tights. ...Like, that he likes tights."
Narrator: But did you really expect anything more from the people who made Shadow the Hedgehog? Like, really.
Lampshaded when the main character of "Don't Go To Sleep" is put on trial by the Reality Police. When asked what he did, he's shown a flashback of him saying that he hates reality.
15 LIFE SENTENCES! 7 LETHAL INJECTIONS! 10 DECADES OF FAMILIAL SHAMING!
Does This Remind You of Anything?: Jon notes that a grandfather clock in "Titenic" (yes that is spelled right as Jon so angrily notes) may have a "very well endowed man inside" with heavy emphasis on "well endowed".
Early-Installment Weirdness: The earliest episodes of JonTron had little of the style he eventually grew into and became popular with, instead approaching games more seriously and more in the style of his predecessors.
Jon: ["Pokemon Diamond"] is in fact a Japanese cell-phone-based RPG called "Keitai Denjū Telefang"... Okay, now get this: it means: Mobile Phone Beast...Telefang. Goddammit, that was the word I wanted to know most!
Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: Averted, as he reviews several crappy games with dinosaurs, and even lampshades their prevalence in his Home Improvement video, saying he hadn't even noticed it until fans pointed it out to him. He ranks dinosaurs alongside spiders and skeletons as video game enemies that are often thrown in with the least amount of sense and originality according to plot, especially in the 16-bit era.
Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Jon tries to reassure himself that Starfax Temperatures will improve. Can't judge a book by its cover! Unless it's Stuff On My Cat.
"Cause, that... you're pretty much gettin', y'know, the whole experience right there."
In the ending to his Starfox Adventures video, he threw the disk into space. The very end showed that it was on a crash-course for "Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts an Bolts", which he reviewed later.
Four Point Scale: Invoked and Played for Laughs. Jon devised a meaningless ratings system wherein it's actually impossible for a game to receive bad marks (in its own way a dig at Video Game Journalists and their reviews), no matter how much he bashed it in his review. Sonic Colors and Donkey Kong Country Returns received an "A/5" and a "Six Golden Bananas+/Shigeru Miyamoto" respectively; even though Jon spent the whole video mocking them (though it's pretty clear he enjoyed both). Nimbus, described as "A game you will maybe forget", got a B/5.
Regardless, many YouTubefans seem to think that he hates DKCR because of the things he said in his review. A simple comment search would reveal that he'd seriously give the game a 9/10.
Funny Background Event: During Final Hallway XIII, when Jon starts panicking as he realizes the gravity of his situation, Jacques is chewing on his ear.
Also, the clerk from the Foodfight! review, who claims to have owned the film for a million years.
Gainax Ending: Several episodes have ended in bizarre and hilariously confusing ways, including Jon shooting himself into the Sun, being visited by a demonic Slippy Toad, and launching into a cover of Katy Perry's "Firework".
Let's face it, we all got a bit teary at that last example, it was simply magnificent.
Genius Ditz: Despite his frenetic and slightly spastic persona, Jon has a very good understanding of game theory and will sometimes take a moment to explain exactly why a particularly bad fault is so fatal. For instance, his comments on being able to ignore the complex combo system in Aquaman and win reliably by mashing the A button leads to an explanation of "Dominant Strategy", and the blatant Breaking the Fourth Wall in Bubsy 3D prompts him to elaborate on Willing Suspension of Disbelief and how such forced self-reference damages it. Since he tends to slow down when explaining these concepts to allow the audience to comprehend what he's saying, he usually lampshades them by shrieking GAME THEORY TIME!! and/or splicing in a The More You Know type clip.
Hookers and Blow: His interpretation of Sonic Team as an over-the-hill Eurotrash rock band who've long since stopped caring about the music.
"Welcome to Sonic Team! We make games, I think!" (SNORRRT) "What the fuck is a Sonic?!" "That's—that's not a Kinect at all! It's just a Monster can I rolled the wrong way."
Hope Spot: Jon thought that Conker was going to get another sequel and that Rare might finally reclaim it's former glory. Then it turned out that Conker was only going to make an appearance in Project Spark. Jon was not happy.
"So what? I don't care, I don't CARE." (I care immensely)
In his Monster Bash review, Jon picks up his $150 game disk with a Hot Pocket and slams it into his CD tray while disjointedly singing "Don't forget to be careful with your raaaaare gaaaaaaame! C'mon, s'just get in there, we gotta play."
Irony: In Game Grumps, Jon explains that while he has no problem with effeminate designs for men or effeminate men in general, but because how one of Simon Belmont's central character traits is that he's "a hardened motherfucker," he was not a fan of Simon's redesign◊ for Castlevania Judgement. On a related note, he's made it clear on more than one occasion that he also doesn't like the series Continuity Reboot, Castlevania: Lords of Shadow. Of course, when Simon debuted in the Lords of Shadow continuity, Simon was given a very tough, masculine appearance◊—much more in line with what Jon feels is a good fit for the character.
Lethal Chef: The one time he's seen cooking is when he mixes nuts and eggs and tries to roast them on a stovetop. The resulting concoction starts exploding and throwing sparks everywhere before emitting noxious fumes that knock him out for a month.
Logic Bomb: Jacques apparently gives himself one during the Stairfax Temperatures episode.
Jacques: Those who can't teach, preach, and those who preach also teech...
Malaproper: Jon does this constantly as part of his character. Sometimes he makes up for it by adding subtitles... which are also full of malapropisms.
Metaphorgotten: Jon has given us such beautiful similes as claiming that Christopher Belmont "climbs like frickin' Beach Boys on a hot summer Sunday" and describing a certain enemy in Monster Party as starched white pants "walking around like J. Edgar Hoover on a Tuesday afternoon." To say nothing of his analogy for the resilience of the human spirit in his Stairfax Temperatures review:
Jon: Here I am, a whole year later, still trucking along like a sack of potatoes on a long open road, wishing he'd stopped for gas at the last rest stop, and then on the Interstate 12, he gets hijacked and murdered by a bunch of Quaker ghosts!
Viewer: I was wondering, would you ever consider doing a video on product-placement video games, such as Cool Spot, Yo! Noid, Doritos Crash Course... Sneak King... Jon: Oh my God... [drops mic] ...It's my next fucking video!
An earlier example happened during his Bubsy series video, where he invokes this trope upon the second time Bubsy dies to Falling Damage during his play of the first game.note Incidentally, the first time he claims Bubsy dies to falling damage wasn't an example of the mechanic; Bubsy had been struck by an erupting manhole cover just before hitting the ground, but it happened so quickly that Jon didn't notice.
Pac Man Fever: The whole 'mix-and-match console components' aspect is Played for Laughs regularly whenever Jon tries to put the game in the console. It's not uncommon to see something like Jon trying to stuff a game box into an SNES and then tape a Gamecube controller to the controller port. To play Minecraft. Or to tape an RCA cable to the top of an NES, and then stand the cartridge up and try to stick the console on top of it.
He even does this when reviewing a TV show (Goosebumps, to be more specific,) sticking the original books into an NES, a Super Nintendo and then a Dreamcast.
Parrot Pet Position: Jacques spends most of his time onscreen on either one of Jon's shoulders.
Precision F-Strike: Nightshade's obtuse gameplay makes Jon snap and start swearing like a gospel singer.
"FUCK you! (wags finger) I AAAAAAAAAAAAAIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNNNN'T HAVIN' THAT SHIT ♪
A precision S strike occurs in his Home Improvement review.
[Playing as Tim Allen from Home Improvement, fighting dinosaurs, with a chainsaw]
"WHAT THE FUCK IS A SONIC!?"
Pun: Bubsy? More like DRUGSY! (sniveling laughter)
"Oh no, Atlantis is under attack! Oh the hu-manatee!"
Robot Buddy: In-universe, Jacques has stated he is a cyborg at least once. Out of universe though, he's just a parrot made to seem like a robot in editing.
Running Gag: Jon often can't figure out how to boot up old games. Taken Up to Eleven in his Dinocity review. First he tries the Playstation 3. Then his PC's CD drive. Then the DS. followed by the wireless router. Then the dishwasher...three times. He finally figures out it must be a Super Nintendo game. And then puts it in upside-down... In his review of Goosebumps, he attempts to put a book in an NES. To review a TV show.
Jon cracking wise about the developer's logo in the credits.
"TDK, that's short for They Don't Kare about their reputation. A little known fact." "Ubisoft, huh? More like U-Betta-Start-A-New-Company-Soft." "Irem. As in, "IRemember them! oh wait, no I don't." "Ah, my favorite publisher: Absolute-LEE copied Sierra's logo!" "More like the Commodore Sixty-BORE." *snigger*note Just kiddin', it was actually pretty revolutionary
Schedule Slip: Initially he uploaded his videos weekly. However, the gap between new videos has gotten bigger and bigger to the point where the series had updates once every couple of months. Game Grumps could be blamed for this, just like how all of Egoraptor's animations ground to halt around the same time, though both insist that isn't the case, and just happen to both be really slow at updating these days.
However, after he left Game Grumps and started making videos again, he seems to be updating regularly on a monthly schedule. This trope is still played straight In-Universe in regards to the Home Alone review, where his Christmas special is delayed to January due to his Mushroom Samba.
His opinion of Kinect Star Wars, where he claims that the game is pretty terrible, but it has enough charm and creativity that it's enjoyable in its own weird way.
Jon pins the Pokémon hack Moemon as unnecessary and creepy, being a version with the Pokémon sprites replaced with little girls. One quick browse through the comments section shows a pretty large amount of people who now feel the desire to play said hack.
Jon: Oh Jacques, you can't play! You don't have hands! *Rim Shots are repeated over and over until they turn into a drum solo*
Or another fantastic example from his Nightshade video:
Jon: (Trying to pick up a crowbar) A don't do it, and B don't do it, so what do it? This controller only got twoit... dem buttons... *beat, followed by incredibly sped-up Super Mario 3D Land music with the subtitle 'THAT WAS A JOKE, thx 4 COMIN'*
Anytime Jon sings badly. According to Game Grumps, Jon's trained in Musical Theater, and when he sings properly he's actually pretty good.
His periodic "Review?" videos, which involve him making nonsensical segues, making completely false or just out-there statements, and speaking in a slurred, half-drunk sounding voice.
The Mighty Max review, in which the haunted cartridge is held up by a clearly visible string taped to it and a broomstick that falls into view when he pulls the cartridge down. He's got good enough editing skills to do it better if he wanted to, so it must be assumed this was intentional.
Surprise Creepy: The Dino City review ends with a lengthy scene of Jon singing "Firework" out of nowhere. And then suddenly...
DEATH COMES TO US ALL!
The last scene of the "Bootleg Pokémon Games" ends in a fairly creepy way.
Take That: In his review of Sonic Colors (even though he ultimately gave the game a score of "A/5"), he mentions that a crucial matter in determining whether or not the game will be good is that the Wii may not have enough Blast Processing to run it. For those without context, "Blast Processing" is an utterly meaningless term invented by Sega in the early nineties to promote the Sega Genesis and Sonic the Hedgehog, claiming technical superiority over the Super Nintendo. Jon takes cracks at Sonic Team regularly, but seemingly all in good fun.
Home Improvement begins "with you standing around like a idiot watching Tim Allen use what he read in a book was "humor." (cue grunt)
Tantrum Throwing: Nightshade concluded with Jon hurling the cartridge against his garage wall, hitting it with a viking mallet (which broke), and then holding the broken handle like a mic while singing into it.
Nightshade's hard to impress. You take him to a history museum and you're like "Look at that giant bronze horse from the early BCE times." and he's like "Eh. Nothing unusual here." You take him to the Future History Museum and you're like "Look at that giant hologram horse from the distant CE times and he's like "Nightshade can't do that."
Who Wants to Live Forever?: Jon decides that he wants to play the twelve games of Hercules to become immortal, like how Hercules did his twelve trials. The ninth game makes him decide against it and kill himself. Again.
I don't really wanna become immortal that much anyways, it's too much hard work. You gotta keep watching people going in and out of the White House for the rest of time. No thanks, Samuel!