Just another day at the office. note
You just don't get Art do you, Libby?
— Shannon Arcuni
Bloody Urban is, to quote its creator, a completely normal slice-of-life webcomic
, set in an Alternate Universe
of Sydney, Australia populated by vampires, werewolves and other sorts of monsters.
A surreal parody of both the Supernatural Soap Opera
and the typical Work Com
, Bloody Urban follows the lives of Murray Manson and Shannon Arcuni
, a couple of hipsters in their mid-twenties who work together in the creative department of what is possibly the world's strangest advertising company. Murray, a writer, is an awkward, slightly neurotic werewolf who is endlessly frustrated with his life. Shannon, an artist, is a gleefully insane, food-obsessed ghoul who is usually getting himself into some kind of trouble in the name of True Art
. Along with their various friends and relations, they go about their lives doing things that usually precede hilarity
Most of Bloody Urban's humour comes from the fact that, instead of the typical Masquerade
setup, the general population is aware of every weird thing that exists in the comic's universe, they have always been aware of them, and they consider it all to be completely normal.
The series is mainly a gag-per-week webcomic. The comic, including some of the original hand-drawn strips can be found here
and the old, unfinished storyline can be found here
This comic provides examples of:
- A Good Name for a Rock Band: Groovy Roo and the Time-Travelling Lesbians
- All There in the Manual: A lot of unused characters and additional information can be found on the artist's tumblr
- Alien Blood: Vampires' blood is black. Ghouls' blood is green.
- Alternative Calendar: All we know about this world's calendar is that there's a September 40th.
- Amazing Technicolor Population
- Ambiguously Brown: Jenna. Lampshaded in the artist's comment here.
- Animated Adaptation: Human
- Balloon Belly: Shaz is sporting a pretty big one in Barf, as a buildup for one of the grossest jokes in the comic.
- Black Comedy: Pizza, Dog Whistle and School Reunion in particular, but there's some dark humour sprinkled throughout.
- Blob Monster: Upside-Down Amoeba Dude.
- Bloody Hilarious: Tennis
- Bloody Murder: Green establishes that Shaz's blood is poisonous to humans if ingested.
- Big Eater: Shannon.
- Call Back: In Heat Wave, you can see black markings on the wall where they've scrubbed off Murray's madness-induced scribbling from A Visit From the IT Guy
- Chupacabra: Forms part of Shaun's ridiculous Scooby-Doo Hoax in this strip.
- Creator Provincialism
- Couldn't Find a Pen: Played for Laughs in Scare Campaign, then again as a background gag in Practice.
- Dinner Deformation: Happens to Shaz when he tries to eat an iPad and it goes down the wrong way. He almost chokes to death and has to have his throat cut open.
- Drool Hello: in this comic.
- Earth Drift: ASCZ often refers to the older comics as 'the boring period in which everything was sane and relatively normal'.
- Eye Glasses: Libby and Murray
- Fantasy Kitchen Sink: So far, there are vampires, dinosaurs, mermaids, mad scientists, Frankenstein monsters, chupacabras, werewolves, ghouls, Eldritch horrors (including Slender Man) and land-walking dolphins. Concept art suggests there are also gorgons, wendigos, fish people and giant land-dwelling octopi.
- Frankenstein's Monster: Parodied-Murray's Frankenstinian coworker Eric has two left hands, lego teeth, a hunchback and one eye that's a golfball. This poor construction is explained to be the result of the Mad Doctor being completely stoned.
- Friendly Neighborhood Vampires: Played with. They aren't quite at the Always Chaotic Evil level, but the Bloody Urban Vampires tend to all be pretty dickish.
- Geeky Turn-On: Deadmau5
- Glamour Failure: Whenever Shaz turns into a copy of somebody, his eyes stay yellow and his skin maintains a greenish tint.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: The result of seeing IT Guy's true form.
- Halloweentown: AU-Sydney is shades of this. Despite the bright colours, the sky is varying shades of red and purple and the buildings have a distinct Dr. Caligari vibe to them. Then of course there's the people.
- Hard-Drinking Party Girl: Angelica.
- Heroic Dolphin: Subverted- The dolphin in 'Sea Rapist' is a registered sex offender.
- Horror Hunger: Played for laughs. Always.
- Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: At 6'5", Murray is the tallest character in the series. Camille barely comes up to his chest.
- Humanoid Abomination: The IT guy
- Incredibly Lame Pun: The very appropriately titled the Worst Pun Ever
- Land Down Under: Usually, the only way a non-Australian could guess the setting is by the odd-coloured money, the weird trees, and (occasionally) the slang. However, Tennis is nothing but this trope, depicting the Australian Open as a blood sport played entirely by crocodiles.
- Madness Mantra: TROJANS TROJANS TROJANS
- Noodle Incident: Got Libby kicked out of MENSA.
- Odd Friendship: Libby and Angelica
- Our Ghouls Are Creepier: Shaz bleeds green, has a forked tongue and spiny claws, and he has the ability to shape shift into a hyena-like monster as well as anyone he's taken a bite out of recently.
- Our Vampires Are Different: Camille's skin colour gets less pale when she feeds on human blood.
- Our Werewolves Are Different: Murray has sharp teeth and nails, even in human form, and flies into a rage if he hears high pitched noises. Also, mistletoe burns his skin.
- Product Placement: McDonald's, Zazzle t-shirts and Apple, as well as Australian restaurant chains like Pieface and Eagle Boy's Pizza.
- Reality Ensues: Surprisingly, given the generally unrealistic tone of the series, this trope gets pulled out a fair few times.
- Retcon: Shannon was a vampire until very recently.
- Retraux: Murray's prescription drug-fueled hallucination features inanimate objects with 30's-style cartoon faces.
- Shout-Out: The green hat Shannon is wearing in Heat Wave looks very similar to the hat worn by Carl in Llamas with Hats. Later on, in Neck Scar, he's wearing a purple t-shirt with 'DON'T BOG ME DOWN, SON' written on it.
- Shown Their Work: Ghouls in Bloody Urban have bright green blood that is toxic if eaten. As the artist's comment of Green explains, this is Truth in Television- the bile pigment that gives Real Life animals like the samkos bush frog green blood can cause jaundice and liver failure.
- Special Guest: Parodied-Every time a nameless, one-shot character appears in a strip, they will be introduced as 'This Week's Special Guest' in the artists comment. In strips where there are only recurring characters present, the 'guest' will often be an abstract concept or random object in the background.
- Surreal Humour
- Swallowed Whole: Shannon can do this to people, including his rival from 6th grade and Murray.
- Truth in Television: There is, believe it or not, an actual company that wants to one day produce Kanye West-flavoured sausages.
- The Worm That Walks: Played for surreal laughs in the animated special with a man-shaped stack of newts riding the train.
- Word Salad Title
- You Meddling Kids: Quoted nearly word for word in the aptly titled 'Meddling Teens'