Western Animation / Robotboy

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Robotboy (2005-2008) is an animated television series created by Cartoon Network Europe.

The eponymous protagonist is the latest creation of the world-renowned scientist Professor Moshimo. Due to fears that Robotboy would fall into the hands of his arch-rival Dr. Kamikazi and his main henchman, Constantine, to be used as their token to world domination, Professor Moshimo entrusts Robotboy to 10-year-old Tommy Turnbull, his biggest fan. While being protected by Tommy and his two friends, Lola and Gus, or "G-man" as he calls himself, Robotboy learns how to behave and act as if he were a real boy.


This show provides examples of:

  • Bare Your Midriff: Debbie Turnbull, she wears a red sports bra throughout
  • Beehive Hairdo: In "The Revenge of Protoboy", Deb gets one in the salon on the cruise ship.
  • Berserk Button: Felonious Hexx goes into a rage when anyone undermines his magic skills. In his second appearance, just seeing Gus makes him turn red.
  • Bilingual Bonus: One of the signs outside Gus's house in "Metal Monster" says "verbotten", which is German for "banned". (It should actually be spelled with only one T, but that's beside the point.)
  • Book Dumb: Gus. So much so that a pigeon in his body did better on a science test than he usually does.
  • Break the Cutie: Off-screen, implied to have been done to Robotgirl right before "The Return of Robotgirl".
  • Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: "Just what any school nurse would do...I took [Gus's] temperature, changed his pulse, and then, gave him a brain transplant!"
  • Bully Brutality: Kurt and his cronies have no problem beating up Tommy and others, up to the point that one of them carries a bowling ball around in his hat to hit people with. In "Science Fear", Kurt even tries to actively kill Tommy.
  • But Not Too Black: Subverted with Lola. You wouldn't mistake her for a white girl, but her eyes are very blue. And then there's her voice...
  • Butt-Monkey: Dr. Kamikazi and Gus. Donnie actually calls Tommy one in "I Want That Toy!" but not with the same meaning. It's just a random insult.
  • Cain and Abel: Protoboy is the Cain to Robotboy's Abel.
  • Character Tics: Robotboy's ears (or whatever those things on the sides of his head are) droop when he's sad.
  • Chekhov's Gun: In "Kami-Chameleon", Gus shows Chupika to Tommy, his new virtual pet. Later, Tommy uses Chupika to charge Robotboy when his batteries fall out.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Subverted in "Vitamin Sucker". Klaus von Affenkugel's Vitamonger sucks all the nutrients out of all the plants, food and people it hits, but Gus is unaffected due to his all junk food diet. Near the end he shows up out of nowhere to attempt a Big Damn Heroes moment, but then quickly retreats.
  • Closer to Earth: Lola, especially in "The Return of Robotgirl" when she is able to help Robotgirl where Tommy, Gus and Robotboy failed.
    Robotgirl: Lola explain. Robotgirl should ignore logic functions. Must get in touch with emotion functions. Trust motherboard. Robotgirl find Moshimo!
  • Cute Mute: Miumiu, Moshimo's fiancée, but it's finally subverted at the end of "Grow No-Mo!"
  • Dumpster Dive: Gus is willing to eat leftovers straight from the garbage.
  • Epic Fail: In "The Old Switcharobot", Robotboy-in-Protoboy's-body Super-Activates and prepares to fight Protoboy-in-Robotboy's-body...and then his arm cannon falls out.
  • Precious Puppies: Subverted in "Dog-Ra", where the lost puppy adopted by Tommy turns out to be a Kamikazi robot.
  • Evil Counterpart: Protoboy to Robotboy, Kamikazi to Moshimo, Kurt to Tommy. Especially noticeable in the Robotboy/Protoboy case — Robotboy was turned evil in a couple of episodes by Kamikazi, but it's always reversed by the end, and Protoboy is pretty much what Robotboy would be if Kamikazi turned him evil without Tommy finding a way to switch him back.
  • Evil Is Petty: In "Bad Nanny!" aside from getting trying to get revenge on Gus and Tommy, Felonious Hexx (in disguise as their nanny) also orders pizzas for a hundred people all the way from Mexico.
  • Evil Redhead: Gus... well, not that evil. It's very hard to tell sometimes, though.
  • Expy: Gus is basically a child friendly Eric Cartman.
  • Face Palm: Protoboy's reaction to Robotboy stopping Robotgirl from making a Heroic Sacrifice in "The Return of Robotgirl".
    Protoboy: Oh, brother. What a dummy.
  • Faking the Dead: In "The Revenge of Protoboy" Gus gets Donnie to stop assaulting him with oranges by playing dead.
  • Fartillery: In "Christmas Evil" Santa gets back at Gus for attempting to scam him by farting into a box and leaving it for him.
  • Fanfic Magnet: Everyone in this show, especially to North American and Asian fans after 2008.
  • Fem Bot: Despite her name, Robotgirl fits more into this category than this.
  • First-Name Basis: Gus often addresses Tommy's parents by their first names.
  • Forbidden Fruit: Gus's Freudian Excuse for his obsession with video games and other electronic toys is that his parents are Amish and forbid such things.
  • For Halloween, I Am Going as Myself: Averted; In the Halloween episode, Tommy disguises himself as Robotboy in order to give Robotboy a chance to dress up as something else.
  • For Your Own Good: At the end of one episode, Robotboy says something like "Tommy does not love Robotboy. He does not shout at him." Tommy laughs.
  • Four-Fingered Hands
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: In 'Robogus and the G-Machine' Gus and Robotboy end up switching minds due to an accident. Gus uses his powerful machine body to do whatever he wants with no one to stop him, while Robotboy loves his 'real boy' body and uses his skills and happy persona to make 'Gus' the most popular kid in school.
  • Fun-Hating Confiscating Adult: Principal Culpepper. It turns out this is because she never had any toys as a child and as a result she is a Woman Child stealing toys so she can keep them for herself.
  • Genki Girl: Robotgirl. Subverted in "The Return of Robotgirl" when she is shown to be very sad and doesn't trust Tommy, Gus or even Robotboy due to choppy memory loss.
    Robotboy: Robotgirl, it me, Robotboy! We friends. Search memory.
    (Robotgirl tries to punch Robotboy but misses and hits Gus instead)
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Kamakazi actually got away with calling Constantine a "jackass".
    • In "Kamispazi!" when Constantine disguised as Deb bends over to steal Robotboy from off of Tommy's bed, he's interrupted when Dwight sneaks up on "Deb" and squeezes "her" butt off-screen, complete with honk sound effect.
    • Gus slaps Lola on the butt in "Roughing It" to hurry her up when he hears thunder. She's also carrying him, by the way.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: In "The Old Switcharobot":
    Protoboy-in-Robotboy's-body: (talking to Moshimo) You always like Robotboy better than Protoboy! Now get vengeance!
  • Glove Snap: In "Donny Turnbull's Day Out", Debs snaps on a pair of latex gloves before applying a special cream to her son's stomach to remedy his sickness, completely unaware that he's faking it.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Kamikazi attempted to turn Protoboy evil, but went too far and made Protoboy too evil to the point of being nigh-uncontrollable.
  • Gretzky Has the Ball: In "Bowling for Dummies", when Debs thinks she's scored a strike, she yells "Homerun!"
  • Happy Birthday to You!: In "Everybody Loves Grandma", General Yakitori throws a birthday party for himself and has his robots sing The Birthday Song, but as they're malfunctioning they can only repeat the first verse over and over.
  • Hartman Hips: Tommy's mom. Her hips got even wider in season 2.
    • The PE teacher also has them.
  • Hilariously Abusive Childhood: Tommy's mom is the only member of his family who doesn't treat him like crap. Hell, besides Lola, she's the only one who doesn't consistently act like a jerk to Tommy.
  • Hippie Teacher: There's one in "Tween for a Day". Ironically, she teaches the computer class.
  • Hulk Speak: Robotboy talk somewhat like dees (due to apparently being Japanese).
  • I Can't Believe It's Not Heroin!: Tommy's mom's reaction to the cookies Dr. Kamikazi sold her in "Traffic Slam".
  • I Resemble That Remark!: Throughout "Everybody Loves Grandma" Mr. Turnbull complains about his mother treating him like a child while he's acting like a child.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Robotboy uses it on Constantine in "Kamispazi!" to get him to tell where Kamikazi is.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Gus does care about his friends despite how obnoxious he is.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: In "The Revenge of Protoboy", when Donnie thinks he's killed Gus he first appears to show remorse, but it's soon made clear he's more concerned about getting in trouble than having killed someone.
  • Kick the Dog: Kurt throwing a ball at some random crippled kid in "Kami-Chameleon".
  • Last Name Basis:
    Kurt: Hey, Turnbull. Who told you you could breathe my air? Get him, guys!
  • Latex Perfection: In one episode Constantine is able to squeeze into a flawless Mrs. Turnbull disguise.
  • Leitmotif: Kamikazi has his own.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Lola even wears her blue dress when she goes to bed. The only time she's ever been seen wearing a completely different outfit was when she went bowling, oddly enough.
    • She wore a soccer uniform when she was on Tommy's soccer team.
    • She also wore Liederhosen in one episode, but it was for a dance number she was going to do.
  • New Job as the Plot Demands: Felonious Hexx has a different job every time he appears. First he was a magician, then a school nurse, then a dentist and then a nanny.
  • Nice Hat: Kurt and one of his cronies have them, and Tommy's dad sports one in "Foot Brawl".
  • Nice, Mean, and In-Between: Robotboy and Lola (nice), Gus (mean), and Tommy (inbetween).
  • Nightmare Sequence: Donnie has a pretty long one in "Donnie Turnbull's Day Off" that involves fish medicine, his mom, and Robotboy's bed. It makes sense when you watch the episode.
  • Nobody Calls Me "Chicken"!
    Robotboy: That ice cream. Gus like. Eat much.
    (Robotgirl takes a carton out of the freezer)
    Robotboy: No! Food bad for robots!
    Robotgirl: Robotboy afraid eat ice cream?
    Robotboy: No afraid!
    Robotgirl: Robotgirl sorry scare Robotboy.
    Robotboy: Robotboy no afraid!
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Kurt and his dad's voices are based on Jack Nicholson and Christopher Walken respectively.
  • No Sympathy: Klaus von Affenkugel's has been bullied with entire life by people with no sympathy to how small and weak he is.
  • Obliviously Evil: Robotboy pulls this off in "Clammadon Rising" and "Grow No-Mo!"
  • Oblivious to Love: Tommy to Lola.
  • Ocular Gushers: Robotboy in "Crying Time" after he watches the ending of a sad play, and Robotgirl in "The Return of Robotgirl" after Gus tells her she looks terrible. Did we mention they both cry oil instead of water?
  • Odd Friendship: A double case for Tommy, a typical, if highly intelligent boy in an unremarkable middle class family, is best friends with a child friendly version of Eric Cartman from an Amish family, and the insanely rich daughter of a famous ambassador from an African country.
  • Out of Focus: Donnie appears the most in Season 1; he last appeared in Everybody Loves Grandma along with Dwight Turnbull.
  • Panty Shot: Several kids in "The Donnienator"; Lola in "Traffic Slam."
    • And then there was the quick shot in Traffic Slam where they didn't show her panties, if you know what I mean.
      • And for a more obscure upskirt, there was a brief shot of Lola's panties revealed on a Cartoon Network 'City' bumper of her throwing balls at a water dunk tank.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Robotboy puts on a jacket with a giant hood to conceal his ear drums in "Kami-Chameleon" pretending to be a student. Tommy is not amused.
    Tommy: Robotboy, what are you doing here? I told you to go home.
    Robotboy: No-o-o! Robotboy like school!
    • Latex Perfection: His human disguise in "Tween for a Day", however, was quite convincing. Well, more convincing then the usual disguise.
  • Parental Favoritism: Tommy's dad obviously prefers Donnie.
  • Parental Neglect: While Tommy's dad is neglectful because he's a Jerk Ass, his mom is usually neglectful simply out of obliviousness and is often shown to care about Tommy.
  • People Zoo: Auntie Gravitee's intergalactic freakshow. Apparently, Gus is the only human who's freaky enough to fit in there.
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Robotboy and Robotgirl.
  • Pinocchio Syndrome: Robotboy wanting to become more human is a recurring theme, especially in seasons three and four.
  • Pintsized Powerhouse: Robotboy and Robotgirl. Averted with Protoboy, since he's a little bigger than both of them.
  • Psycho Prototype: Protoboy. Even before Kamikazi made him evil, he was still one hell of a nutjob — this is seen in a flashback when Moshimo first activated him and Protoboy's immediate reaction was to beat him up.
  • Psychic Powers: Robotboy's probability calculator in "The Soothsayer".
  • A Real Man Is a Killer: Subverted in "Kamispazi!" when Donnie gives his mom a cooked squirrel with his dad saying that he trapped and skinned it by himself...but then reveals it was actually roadkill.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Robotboy's Super-Activated form. Protoboy has them 24/7.
  • Retcon: In "Brother," Moshimo says that his first encounter with Kamikazi was when he kidnapped Protoboy. Later, in "The Legend of Brainy Yak," Moshimo relates his childhood as a yak herder in the Alps, and notes that a young Kamikazi made fun of one of his yaks.
  • Ridiculously Human Robot: Robotboy. He's even passed for a human kid at least twice. Somehow.
    • Robotgirl even more so.
  • Rogues Gallery: After a while, Robotboy got himself a fairly big one. Villains that have appeared in more than one episode includes: Dr. Kamikazi, Klaus von Afoncügel, Bjorn Bjornson, Kurt's father, Felonius Hex, General Yakitori, Principal Culpepper and Protoboy.
  • Rummage Fail: In "Traffic Slam" when Dwight needed a spark plug for the car, Debs ironically found one in the glove compartment while frantically looking for more cookies, but since it wasn't cookies she just threw it out the window and it fell off the bridge and into the water.
  • Sadist Teacher: The P.E. teacher. In "Tween for a Day", she picks a boy in crutches as the goalie in soccer practice and just watches as he gets hit with balls.
  • Scarecrow Solution: Used very briefly when Gus pretends to be another Moshimo robot in "The Return of Robotgirl" to distract Protoboy, but it only works for a few seconds.
    Gus: Oops, busted.
  • Shaped Like Itself: "Good morning, class. I'm Kurt's father. You can call me...Kurt's father."
  • She's a Man in Japan: Tommy is a girl in the Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Mongolian, Kazahk and Kyrgyz dubs of the show, instead of a boy like in the other dubs of the show.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Simpleton Voice: One of Kurt's two cronies has one. Ironically, he's the smarter one of the two.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Lance Cosgrove, a self-absorbed investigate reporter who keeps making up the most ridiculous tabloid explainations for anything Robotboy is involved in. Both Tommy's and Lola's dads love watching his show because they think he's So Bad He's Good.
    • Also Gus — an example would be when he tries to show Robotboy how to win a girl over and ends up making Robotgirl cry.
  • Spoiled Sweet: Lola. Not always that sweet, but she's still a very good friend.
  • Stock Sound Effects: The "wheeeeeeeeee" noise heard in "Clammadon Rising" when Clammadon zaps Robotboy and turns him back to Sleep-Mode Size.
  • Stock Footage: Robotboy's transformation sequence.
  • Stop Copying Me: Utilized in "Donnie Turnbull's Day Off" when Robotboy pretends to be an ordinary toy around Donnie when Tommy is out of the house.
    (Donnie picks up Robotboy)
    Donnie: Who are you? What's your deal?
    Robotboy: (mechanically) I robot toy.
    Donnie: (laughs) What a stupid voice!
    Robotboy: Ha. What a stupid voice.
    Donnie: Hey! Shut your face!
    Robotboy: Hey. Shut your face.
    Donnie: (shakes Robotboy) I said, zip it, freak!
    Robotboy: Zip it, freak. Zip it, freak. Zip it, freak. Zip it, freak. Zip it —
    (Donnie hits Robotboy and is met with a punch to the face)
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Played with. Tommy looks like his mom, but not his dad or Donnie — and Donnie doesn't look like their dad either.
  • Surveillance as the Plot Demands: Dr. Kamikazi is a master of this trope. His cameras even managed to tap into Tommy's dreams...
  • Talk to the Fist: Robotgirl punches Gus in the face at least three times in "The Return of Robotgirl".
  • Temporary Bulk Change: A side-effect of the tapeworm living in Gus's stomach in "Tummy Trouble". Of course, Gus becomes his normal fat self again at the end.
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: Robotgirl. Bow? Check. Pink where Ro is blue? Check. Skirt? Check. Eyelashes? Check.
    • Walter the (apparently male) tapeworm from "Tummy Trouble" inverts this with pink coloration, eyelashes and a high voice.
  • ˇThree Amigos!: Tommy, Gus and Lola. Somehow. Somewhat.
  • Too Dumb to Live: In "Science Fear" Kurt almost died from heat exhaustion because he got into a mecha without air conditioning and refused to get out because he was having too much fun, first just going around the city wrecking stuff, and then trying to kill Tommy.
    • Despite knowing Felonius Hexx clearly has incredible magical powers and totally despises him because of his heckling during his show, Gus continues to mock his skill and deride him as a fake and a lousy magician, resulting in him being attacked and humiliated every time.
      • Really, Gus could qualify for this trope almost every episode.
  • Too Spicy for Yog Sothoth: In "Runaway Robot!" when Robotboy runs away to live with Gus, Kamikazi refuses to go anywhere near Gus' house because Gus' Amish parents creep him out.
  • Transformation Sequence: Robotboy, Robotgirl and Protoboy all get a pretty awesome one.
  • Troll: The function of the Teasebots in "Teasebots". They're invented by Kamikazi to piss off Robotboy so he would waste his energy so Kamikazi could grab. Tommy, with the help of Mashimo, managed to... possibly reprogram the one robot that was left from Robotboy's massacre so as to serve as a distraction. Gus did nothing but try to destroy the only robot they had when he was insulted by it.
    "Hello, ugly! You're so ugly, when you entered an ugly contest, they said, 'Sorry, no professionals.' Thank you very much!"
    "You're so ugly you made an onion cry. Thank you!"
    "You're so ugly, when you walk by a toilet, it flushes! Thank you very much!"
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Applies more to Moshimo and his fiancée than to Tommy's parents.
  • Undying Loyalty: Robotboy and Robotgirl to Moshimo, to the point where they (or at least Robotgirl) would willingly sacrifice themselves for him as proven in "The Return of Robotgirl".
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Every time Klaus von Affenkugel gains super strength he callously fires his assistant Ludwig, who has cared for him since childhood.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: In the episode "Kami-Chameleon", two of the teachers have weird limbs and different voices (they're actually Kamikazi's cronies in disguise) and Robotboy shows up in gym pretending to be a student.
  • Villain Over for Dinner: Subverted in the final episode, when the Turnbull family and the Kamikazi family end up having Thanksgiving dinner (or something resembling that) together after Tommy's mom drops by the house of Kamikazi's mom. Apparently, the two mothers knew each from before on.
  • What Does He See in Her?: Seriously, look at how Bambi treated Tommy at the beginning of "Crying Time"! One scene later, Robotboy says what we're all thinking:
    Robotboy: Bambi bad. Robotboy smash Bambi!
  • With Friends Like These...: Gus is selfish, self-centered, greedy, vain, egotistical, rude and disgusting with no redeeming qualities whatsoever. Yet he is Tommy's best friend, despite the boys willingness to take advantage of the young hero whenever possible, and its never explained why that is.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Brian the Yak, aka Brainy Yak. He was born mentally handicapped, making him a laughing stock among other yaks (though he was blissfully unaware of that) and then Moshimo made him super-intelligent, which made him even more of an outcast.
    • Klaus von Affenkugel has been mercilessly bullied his entire life by virtually everyone (even squirrels) because he was too weak to fight back...or do anything else for that matter.
  • Would Hit a Girl: In "Foot Brawl" Kurt gives Lola a rough bodycheck.
    • In "The Return of Robotgirl", Protoboy kicks Robotgirl in the chest/stomach hard enough to knock her batteries out.
  • Wouldn't Hurt a Child: Averted in "Traffic Slam" when Tommy's mom kicks Lola in the face for trying to take her cookies.

Alternative Title(s): Robot Boy

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/WesternAnimation/RobotBoy