Cracked.com, founded in 2005, is a website spin off from the defunct Cracked Magazine, founded in 1958. It can be found here.Relying largely on (ostensibly) humorous list articles, Cracked has become rather famous on the internet. Its lists, which can be written by anyone, are rooted in fact (usually) and coated in humour (mostly), dispensing interesting (often), historical (sometimes), and scientific (occasionally) trivia surrounded by dick jokes (always). It has about a half dozen full-time columnists on payroll, who dish out weekly and biweekly articles on serious subjects from the cultural effects of the Internet, to Choose Your Own AdventureGonzo-styled articles about visiting the zoo while on an amount of drugs capable of killing most men, to action reporting while getting kidnapped by pirates.Small time celebrities including Seanbaby and Michael Ian Black have written articles for Cracked, with Seanbaby now part of the column staff. The website plays host to numerous Internet sketch groups, webcomics (such as Subnormality, White Ninja and Daisy Owl), and has its own caption contest. It has taken on the "Cracked Wikipedia Project" now known as Cracked topics, where Cracked readers submit articles on a variety of subjects, from Steven Seagal to Punk Rock (including one about TV Tropes).For tropes related to the original magazine, see Magazine.Cracked.For a rundown of who's who on the current column writers:
On top of the regular columnists, Cracked accepts articles from anybody who wants to write one: all you have to do is create a forum account, read this topic and follow the link at the bottom to get access to a forum where you can pitch your own potential articles. As such, some of their articles are written by denizens of This Very Wiki.If you're going to add tropes that have to do with Agents of Cracked please put them here.Reading and/or general association with Cracked.com will also make you irresistibly sexually attractive.
Tropes present on the website:
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20% More Awesome: A common source of comedy, especially in the articles that centre on charts and graphs.
Animeland/All Anime Is Naughty Tentacles: The number of articles that don't portray Japan as being full of A. perverts, B. octopus demons, C. giant robots, or D. any combination thereof could probably be counted on one hand.
Also, the unwritten law seems to be to reserve the last spot for the second (or somewhere close) most triumphant example as an 'appetizer'. So if it's a list of 17 worst haircuts in the Ottoman Empire, it would be like; 2-17-16- ... -4-3-1.
"Let's face it, cities can be terrifying. They are, after all, filled with people like us. The modern metropolis is a teeming hive of strung-out dope heads, rapists, home invaders and fine regional cuisine."
We tend to think of ourselves as the smartest animals on Earth. After all, we've built such technological wonders such as the internet, the internal combustion engine, and sneakers that light up when you take a step
"Where do you go when your name is already Staff Sgt. Max fucking Fightmaster? Oh, wait, there you go. Just make "Fucking" an official part of the name. We think it's almost impossible to say the name without it anyway."
Jack O'Brien, the "boss guy" of Cracked. He's possibly an insanely hardened criminal badass who likes to make time for "Jack's Rock Hour". The fact that he's the superior to the columnists say something about him.
And zig-zagged in this article: "Ramen is a bowl of noodles, broth, spices and destitution that you'll find in college dorms and poverty-stricken homes across the U.S. "
And the final entry in this article about bad behavior on public transport is getting raped by your rickshaw driver.
From this article, the opening sentence says "Mistakes are an inevitable part of human nature, but there's a system for dealing with them the right way — The Four A's: Assess the damage, Acknowledge your role, Apologize sincerely and Assassinate all accusers."
Brick Joke: A while back, Daniel O'Brien wrote this article, about what to do when alone in a room with your doppelganger. In Agents of Cracked season 2 episode 3, he finds himself in that exact situation, and the doppelganger brings up the article.
While the article itself is not brought up, the meet-your-doppelganger scenario showed up in Agents of Cracked season 1 episode 7 "Curse of the Idol".
Which means that DOB has both fucked and fought himself.
Continuity Nod: If a writer thinks something is particularly funny, they'll probably throw it in to whatever situation they feel is remotely appropriate. See this article where Seanbaby takes a potshot at Bullet Ball, the inventor of which you may recall being number one on Seanbaby's list of the greatest failures in the history of talent shows ever.
Dan Browned: Often times their articles, even if they're cited, end up being either gross misrepresentations of the facts or even flat-out lies. A particularly egregious example is in their article "If Oscar Speeches Told the Truth" where they claim the screenplay to Good Will Hunting wasn't really written by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, and the citation they link to directly contradicts their entire point.
Dangerous Workplace: Apparently the Cracked headquarters is a hellish place run by deranged lunatics lead by a rockstar-like figure with No OSHA Compliance whatsoever where writers prefer dangerous reporting missions than to writing in a wooden cage while DOB is out with a working lighter.
In Agents Of Cracked, it's a somewhat deranged workplace run by a mysterious badass, whose requirements for employment involve killing a man, and terrorists and Michael are allowed to roam.
Deconstructor Fleet: Frequently, the themes for the photoshop contests amount to "Show what X would be like in the real world."
Department of Redundancy Department : "Now it's time to check in on the robot body I'm building to put Clippy's mind into, in a segment I like to call 'Checking in on the robot body I'm building to put Clippy's mind into.'"
Description Cut: Quite common. Sometimes an entry will end with something along the lines of 'The only thing crazier than that would be if x happened.' with the next entry being x.
Disproportionate Retribution: Clippy taunts Brockway about his grammar and writing skills. In return, Brockway murders his wife, mentally destroys his children, mocks Clippy's failed suicide attempt following that, and finally summons Cthulhu to drag Clippy's bleeding body away for infinite torment. Harsh, yet hilarious.
And here, 7 Obnoxious Behaviours That Should Be Punishable By Death.
When Buddy found out his bassist Waylon Jennings wasn't going to be on the plane, he said to him: "Well, I hope your ol' bus freezes up." Jennings ominously replied: "Well, I hope your ol' plane crashes." A clap of thunder was heard in the background.
Gustave the Giant Crocodile. Robert Evans describes him as "a living, breathing, scream-eating dinosaur that is so sick of his own immortality that he passes the time by destroying life whenever he sees it."
David Wong: [W]e turned the ["How I Got My Camera" viral video] over to the 30-man Cracked.com video analysis team, who spent six months processing every pixel of the original upload. After enhancing the image to a level of clarity more than 6,000 times that of the original, they reported that there was a prominent watermark for a site called wittkopp.net in the upper right.
Everything Trying to Kill You: Lots of lists involve various animals/places and how they can kill/maim/burn/harm you without even trying. Australia shows up a lot on these lists, apparently you need to kill five species of poisonous spider just to get to the bathroom.
Filler: The major columnists for the site almost never update on Saturday, so the site tends to link to images from older Photoshop contests to pad out the front page. Which some readersstill bitch about like it's a new thing.
Fridge Logic: Invoked in quite a few articles which consist of thinking about the surprisingly gruesome implications of popular TV shows and movies.
Sometimes they will make an aside comment about the main point of discussion.
(talking about the memory of the elephants) When the samples were from elephants who were far away, or had not yet passed by the area, the elephants reacted with surprise. We're not sure how the scientists detected "surprise" in elephants, but we trust their judgment.
Growing Up Sucks: Daniel O'Brien has written two articles about why growing up sucks; however, both Gladstone and Brockway have written articles explaining why it doesn't suck. John Cheese, meanwhile, has written at least one from each perspective.
This is increasingly a focus of the articles; possibly because at least two of the columnists are now parents. There have been at least two articles on the subject of the economy and how tough it is to be not poor anymore.
Though Dan O'Brien did write a terrific article in which he explained positive sides such as complete freedom at home, the ability and means to do fun things on impulse, being able to say no to things and not having to justify decisions to people. Cheese also included a great rebuttal in 5 Reasons Life Really Does Get Better in which he explained the freedom that living on Your own will bring and how the world isn't as bad as young people sometimes believe.
Hypocritical Humor: A subtle and recurring theme of "Cracked TV" is that the Real Life Michael Swaim is just as guilty of all the things that his character criticizes about everyone else. This was dropped in "Does Not Compute", where the focus is on more "out there" topics.
The Internet Is for Porn: Constantly referenced. Two notable uses: Swaim watching pornography and describing what he sees to the viewer (because Cracked is ostensibly a family website and they won't host actual porn), and in The Web Of Sites, part of the Agents series, Swaim finally learns that the internet exists and says:
"I typed in porn, and porn came up! I typed in breakfast, and porn came up! It's the perfect system!"
Intrepid Reporter: Sometimes the columnists write out 1st person stories, sometimes it's about them doing article research. Special mention goes to Chris Bucholz, who seems to do hands-on reporting 80% of the time.
Kick the Son of a Bitch: Robert Brockway mentions killing an old woman for her eyeglasses in Fallout New Vegas, having taken the Four-Eyes trait and didn't find glasses anywhere else; however the woman sold a pregnant woman into slavery and would have been killed in a quest anyway.
"In Marvel world, the odds of winding up with super powers are less than half the chance of being hit by lightning (although to be fair, being hit by lightning in the Marvel universe would probably give you superpowers).
Mighty Whitey: Cracked loves to accuse film and other entertainment companies of racism and sexism, despite the fact that their writing staff has always been composed almost exclusively by white males. As such, they both satirize and play this trope straight at the same time.
When a Chinese-American woman joined the team, each of her articles' comments have been filled with almost nothing but contempt for her for being non-white and female.
Mistaken for Racist: The author of this article explains how a video he made (called "Straya Day") came back to bite him after this happened because of too many people watching it not realizing it was satirical.
This article about intellectual property (which it calls Forced Artificial Scarcity, or FArtS) uses only copyrighted works of authorship (that is, media) as examples, failing to mention potential examples of patented works of engineering (that is, inventions) that arguably power more of the economy.
The Nicknamer: DOB tends to give nicknames to everyone that change every time he refers to them in rapid succession. The nicknames are either puns, insults, terms of endearment, or a disturbing combination of all three.
And they're all usually directed at his boss Jack O'Brien. To name a few: Jaxploitation, Jack to the Future, Jackbook Air, Jacts of Life, etc.
Once per Episode: A bust photo of a large-breasted woman with only a single button closed on her shirt and nothing underneath is shoehorned into the majority of the lists, which usually hang a lampshade on it when she appears.
They eventually ID'd her in this article. Her name is Kate, and she has a face.◊
The President's Daughter: There used to be an article called "6 Helpful Tips for Kidnapping the President's Daughters," which was taken down after the person who wrote it, DOB, was confronted by the FBI and Secret Service.
Rule Of Cool/Rule of Funny: Cracked has refined these into a logical heuristic, frequently stating that given a lack of concrete evidence as to what happened, we are forced to assume the most bizarre, awesome, and/or ridiculous scenario.
The word "Baffling" is often used in titles of articles.
Similar to their love of Roosevelt is their love of Nikola Tesla, and their complete and utter ball-crushing hatred of Thomas Edison. Like Roosevelt, this is because the things you could make up about either man in favor of their position on said man are only slightly less exaggerated than real life.
Have we mentioned Australia yet? Well, Cracked does a lot.
BOD: You know, I remember reading somewhere that there are only two truly meaningful things you can do with your doppleganger when you're locked in a room. You can fight them... Or f*** them.
*Dan takes a fighting stance*
BOD: Wrong answer.
Scunthorpe Problem: Seen in the comments section, due to a word filter that targets a given word sequence even as part of a larger word. For instance, the racial slur "Jap" is rendered as "J*p" so that it'll also catch "Japs" and turn it into "J*ps", and consequently the comments on an article about Japanese subcultures talked about "j*pan" (in lowercase). This makes writing "j*panese" a bit of a problem. "Cum" is also banned, so you can't say "doc*mentary". "Cock" is banned as well, which is a problem since most articles are made of dick jokes. "Spic" makes it a problem writing the word "susp*cious". We could list a whole bunch of examples. Basically, their filter s*cks d*ck.
Self-Deprecation: Everyone who contributes to Cracked are always most likely to take a cheap shot at people that are like them, or Cracked itself. The main contributors are also likely to talk about how much of an asshole they are, the sad fact that they write internet articles, and that they work at a headquarters that serves gruel-like slop and doesn't have indoor plumbing.
Christina H frequently laments how fat and ugly she is, even while explaining why women tend to have artificially low opinions of themselves.
Self-Insert Fic: A good amount of Dan O'Brien's stuff is this, depicting himself as a Jerkass fond of annoying the protagonists and lampshade hanging.
The Stinger: As of 2012, all of Cracked's videos when posted to YouTube have added at the end of them humorous messages from Cracked's staff asking people to subscribe to the channel. Highlights include DOB failing at impressions, "Sorenrotica", and Cody acting wacky and ending with "Cracked you later!"
Stock Footage: Swaim's co-host in Cracked TV, "Clippy", which consists of out-of-context clips from films or viral media, such as "Orientation guy from The Hudsucker Proxy", "Still-lives of fruit alongside Holocaust survivors", and "Clips of chips."
Suspiciously Specific Denial: Robert Brockway loudly and repeatedly interrupts Ian Fortey's last article to insist that he did not kill Ian Fortey, had no reason too, didn't make sure he had the opportunity to and certainly had made no detailed plans to kill him. So much so that he's still insisting it immediately after someone else matter-of-factly confesses to it.
Take That: The tendency to mock MAD has continued, especially since the magazine's sales figures have been in decline whilst Cracked has enjoyed a reasonable amount of success as a website. This article is a good example, which, upon closer reading, can be seen as a "The Reason You Suck" Speech towards Mad.
The Unintelligible: Depending on the article, people either understand what Chris Bucholz is saying or see him as entirely unintelligible as no one can decipher the gibberish language he calls ‘Canadian English.’
All of the articles relating to dick moves done by players in online gaming discusses how people take this trope and ran with it to grandiose and creative heights. At least one or two on every list so far has mentioned EVE.
Wiki Walk: OK, they're not actually a wiki, but it is really easy to get trapped for a long time just by clicking the links at the end of each article. If they were to drop the last two letters, their name would be almost chillingly appropriate. It's a good thing Cracked is free.
The addition of the Random Article button does even more to add to it.