Webcomic / The Scumthorpe Files

The Scumthorpe Files is an ongoing The Sims 3 Machinomic based around the misadventures of various members of the Scumthorpe family, a deeply dysfunctional dynasty of evil industrialists with a genetic predisposition towards cartoonish supervillainy and a nationwide monopoly on mining mutagenic space rocks. Having begun as a collection of comedic short stories posted on the Mod The Sims forums by a user named MinghamSmith in 2012, the series has since evolved into a much more complex narrative centred around the lives of Lester, Carrie and Lolita Scumthorpe- a long-suffering set of triplets trying to grow up vaguely sane in a bizarre, twisted version of SimNation where Finagle's Law reigns supreme.

In addition to MinghamSmith's canonical stories, the series has also inspired a considerable amount of Fan Work, with numerous readers creating their own unofficial branches of the Scumthorpe family tree and posting about their exploits. Over 100 of these fan creations have been identified so far, with new ones appearing on a regular basis.

The series can be found here.

The series provides examples of:

  • Adults Are Useless: Most of the adult characters in the series are either evil, incompetent, crazy, or all of them at once. From the regular cast members, we have the Stupid Evil Corrupt Corporate Executive Larry, his Gold Digger wife Kathryn, Basement-Dweller Spurgin, Butt-Monkey Rick and his Child Hater wife Caroline, supervillain Darius, perverted Sid, insane conspiracy theorists Vernon and his wife Valerie, moronic Walter and his equally Dumb Blonde wife. Outside the Scumthorpes, there is also Sprugin's Otaku housemates, the Nervous Wreck Mr Philips, and pretty much all the parents in SimNation.
  • All Myths Are True: Every urban legend and myth ever told in this verse, such as Bloody Norah, the Playground lurker, and Polybius, all turns out to be real.
  • All There in the Manual: Much of the information about the universe, and its characters, is revealed through forum discussions and Ask Me Anything sessions.
  • Anal Probing: Aliens in the Scumthorpe 'verse are implied to be disturbingly obsessed with this.
  • Ascended Extra: The entire series itself may qualify. It began as a disjointed series of brief posts submitted in a general forum thread that accounts all the funny moments found in the game. It had since garnered enough interest to develop into a concrete narrative that has its own, specific thread.
  • Author Catch Phrase: QUALITY PARENTING.
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: Zigzagged. Larry and his family, most of which are undeniably evil, look unattractive; while among his children, the best-looking ones tend to be the more decent members of the family — such as, Alice, Darius (well, sort of), Lolita and Carrie. But then we have Lester, who is one of the nicest Sim in the story despite being a bona-fide mutant, while Gary and Livia are very good-looking despite being much more immoral than the triplets. Among the other cast members, the school bullies like Billy Bulgristle and Lance Boyle are Gonks, while the triplets' good friends Lily and Nikki are very, very pretty.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: The Scumthorpes have an absurdly complicated family tree consisting of about 100+ (and still counting) members, almost all of whom are insane, evil or both. Most of them hates each others' guts, and they can barely stick around each other without a having a fight.
  • Black Comedy: Makes up about 90% of the entire series. This is, after all, a gag series built on the basis of cartoon villainy where illicit business practices, sabotage, forced marriages and even murder are Played for Laughs.
  • Cast of Snowflakes: Each member of the casts have been given distinctive facial features.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: Considering how being “cartoonishly evil” is the basic concept of the Scumthorpes, this is a given. Pretty much all the main characters have engaged in criminal activities at some point in their lives, and lighthearted discussions about past murder are not uncommon and mostly played for laughs.
  • Costume Inertia: The triplets and their classmates are shown to be wearing similarly styled outfits throughout their various life stages.
  • Crapsack World: SimNation, as written by MinghamSmith, is a neighbourhood based on a game where There Are No Therapists, is currently run by an insane conspiracy theorist whose finances are supported by a corrupt industry that has No OSHA Compliance... to say nothing of the apparent lawlessness of the state and the presence of creepy Supernatural creatures that borderlines Lovecraftian horrors.
  • David vs. Goliath: The triplet's early middle school life saw Carrie brawled, and emerged victorious, against the class bully, Billy Bulgristle, who's at least a head taller than the triplets and probably twice as wide.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: The Scraprow boys encounter the Playground Lurker, and spend the majority of the time giving it snide remarks (although given that they have just got over the age limit of the lurker's target, their fearlessness may be more or less justified).
    Trent: What the fuck, you two? You're standing in front of a cannibalistic kid-eating corpse, and all you're gonna do is snark at it?
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: The Scumthorpe verse features many supernatural characters, including: Aliens, Demons, an Evil Sorceror, the Playground Lurker, Bloody Norah, etc.
  • Free-Range Children: Many of the children can be seen hanging around in secluded places late at night, and, of course, the adults don't really care.
  • Groin Attack: Part of Carrie's fight sequence against Billy Bulgristle has her repeatedly punching him in the nuts. Suffice to say, the brawl is very one-sided towards her favour, and even some of the spectators (none of whom are fans of Billy) felt sorry for the guy.
  • Harmful to Minors: Sprog murdering Larry before severely injuring Carrie.
  • I Love the Smell of X in the Morning: Lolita declares "I LOVE the smell of gunpowder in the morning!"
  • Immortality Immorality: Danton the Deathless is implied to have committed countless instances of murder and organ harvesting to maintain his immortality.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Tara's reasoning for denying Bryne's advances does make sense. She's been dealing with a "weird kid who smells like smoke" stroking her hair and claiming he's going to marry her ever since Kindergarten.
  • Killed Off for Real: Larry Scumthorpe, whose ghost didn't appear after he was murdered by Sprog. Word of God has stated that he won't be revived, even though his deceased first wife has appeared as a zombie several times before, and his eldest daughter is outright stated to have came Back from the Dead before the "story" started.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: The series has more than 20 recurring characters. From the main cast, we have Larry, his wife, his 8 children, his 2 brothers and their family, his children's family, as well as the triplets' classmates and some of their families and friends... To say nothing of the fanmade derivatives, whose numbers exceeds 100.
  • Massive Numbered Siblings: Larry Scumthorpe has 8 legitimate children and at least 2 illegitimate ones.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: The boy-band that Lolita and Tara are fans of, No Direction, is an obvious Shout-Out to One Direction.
  • No OSHA Compliance: Scumthorpe Tiberium continuously pollutes water supply with radioactive material which leads to the growing numbers of disastrous genetic mutations among the newer generations of SimNation. Not that Larry cares, of course.
  • Odd Couple: Tara and Davina are neighbors, and the two often get stuck with each other in many storylines, including one AMA session. Tara's melodramatic overreaction towards her surrounding, coupled with Davina's deadpan response gives their scenes a very entertaining dynamic.
  • Official Couple: After spending months pining after her, and several failed attempts of confession, Lester officially hooked up with Lily during the class' end of academic year celebration.
  • Painful Rhyme: In-Universe. The Scraprow boys attempted to question a Magic Mirror, who would only respond to rhymes. Byrne failed by trying to make up a word to force a rhyme (people — "streeple"), while Trent failed after making a word rhyme with itself ("night").
  • Plenty of Blondes: Inverted. The only blonde characters introduced in the series so far is Kathryn (whose hair is dyed - she's naturally a brunette) and Betty, neither of which are important characters.
  • Put on a Bus:
    • Crypto was sold by Larry to an alien research facility as a toddler, and hasn't been featured in any storylines ever since. Word of God suggests that he may return at a later date, however.
    • Sprog hasn't appeared since he murdered his father and fled into the night. His current location is unknown.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Karl Danton, AKA Danton the Deathless, is a centuries-old immortal alchemist.
  • Same-Sex Triplets: Averted with the Scumthorpe triplets, which consists of Carrie and Lolita (female) and Lester (male).
  • Ship Tease: The Class 6-F summer camp arc depicts several romantic moments between Nikki and Dillinger — having them share a flirty dance with each other and hold hands, among other things.
  • Sibling Rivalry: While Rick doesn't really get along with anyone (save for his Alien buttbaby, Crypto), he's extremely antagonistic towards Spurgin, and they could not spend more than a few minutes alone together without getting into a brawl.
  • Unfortunate Names: Lolita and Carrie Scumthorpe, who were respectively named after the Vladimir Nabokov and Stephen King novels.
  • Unnecessary Makeover: Lolita prepares for middle school by giving herself some makeup and wearing an outrageous Gothic Lolita (no pun intended) outfit. Her siblings, who had wanted to keep a low profile in starting their new school life were not pleased with her change in appearance, invoking an in-universe reaction of this trope. The other boys thinks otherwise, though.
  • World of Weirdness: Probably the most charitable way to describe SimNation. Fantasy Kitchen Sink elements aside, its population is also overrun with insane/evil/jaded/genetically mutated/otherwise quirky characters.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Webcomic/TheScumthorpeFiles