Western Animation: Stroker and Hoop
An animated parody
of the Buddy Cop Show
, especially Starsky & Hutch
. Features two semi-competent yet ineffective Private Detectives
, John "Stroker" Strockmeyer, his partner Hoop Schwartz, and their self-aware robotic car, C.A.R.R.
Stroker (Jon Glaser
) falls short as a detective mostly due to his own short-sightedness, self-involvement and greed more than bad investigative skills. He has a young son (by his Latina ex-wife), whom he loves, even if he can't quite seem to show it properly.
Hoop (Speed Levitch) is a very touchy-feely, sensitive, pacifistic sort who's dressed like a bad motivational speaker. He prefers to talk problems out rather than skip straight to the gunplay. This never works.
C.A.R.R. (Paul Christie) is essentially the opposite of K.I.T.T. from Knight Rider
. He's a junky old beater (not quite The Alleged Car
, but past his prime), he's not too smart, and lacks any really useful gadgetry other than talking
and the ability to drive himself. He listens to a lot of ultra-right-wing talk shows, since he doesn't have an FM radio. He was built by Stroker's mechanic friend "Double-Wide" (who is voiced by Curtis "Booger" Armstrong), whose odd
private life is often helpful.
Finally, they are aided by the jovial, and perhaps most competent
, Coroner Rick. He is often played as a Black Best Friend
to quite nearly every main character.
The characters all had a good dose of Genre Savvy
, though they often failed anyway, and many a Lampshade
was hung on various tropes. As far as trope use in parodies goes, this show is a great example.
This show airs in the Cartoon Network's Adult Swim block on Sunday night.Canceled only after a season of 13 episodes
and with no ending
This show provides examples of:
- Anti-Hero: Stroker. By contrast, however, Hoop is very kind and innocent (When not provoked into avenging his fallen comrades).
- Attending Your Own Funeral: Though Stroker later admits that bringing his son to his own funeral was a crappy idea.
- Atrocious Alias: It's never revealed exactly what gave Stroker the inspiration for his nickname, but it can't have been anything good.
- Autopsy Snack Time: Coroner Rick does this.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Hoop, though this does get played with in a few ways.
- Bilingual Backfire: During this exchange in "Rube Job".
Tio: (In Spanish) Then we'll kill you.
Henchman: (In Spanish) After we cut your balls off and feed them to you.
Double-Wide: (In Spanish) I sure wish I didn't know Spanish.
- Black Comedy: Coroner Rick is an in-universe example...if only to himself.
"Why they always gotta land face-down like that?"
- Blofeld Ploy: Double Subverted.
- Further, too much of this causes a villain to run out of henchmen for when Stroker and Hoop appear.
- Bond/Pre-Mortem One-Liner: Hoop in one episode. They're all pretty bad.
- Buddy Cop Show
- Casanova Wannabe: Stroker. And how.
- Ceiling Cling: Subverted, the guy they're hiding from sees them immediately.
- Chekhov's Boomerang: one episode was set in motion by the duo buying a billboard for "Stroker and Hoop, Detectvies". In a later episode the pair lampshade that they'll have anonymity against a gang who has no idea who they are. The gang leader looks up and sees the billboard still there, still misspelled. Stroker even says he forgot they had it.
- Chick Magnet: Hoop actually pulls in a fair share of legit tail. Including a short lived girlfriend, Judd Winners wife, and Ninja girl Sukko.
- Cliff Hanger / Left Hanging / No Ending: The final episode see Stroker, Hoop and Double Wide locked in C.A.R.R and dangling over a canyon via a giant magnet by a mysterious caller who gives them three guesses to name who he is. The whole episode is mostly a clip show of the season before its revealed that their captor is a minor background character who had the same voice but kept changing his appearance due to his run ins with Stroker and Hoop and their direct or indirect actions which ruined his life. Coroner Rick manages to find out who he is and shoots him. But the captor ends up landing on the switch to the magnet which drops C.A.R.R into the canyon followed by an explosion. The show ends ambiguous of the protagonists' fate.
- Conspiracy Theorist: Ron Howard is trying to control his mind.
- Subverted, in that Ron Howard actually was trying to control his mind.
- Either/Or Title
- Faking the Dead: Stroker and Keith in "Ninja Worrier".
- Genre Savvy: One explicit example is when the pair are solving a mystery in The Deep South.
"In these situations it's always either the corrupt mayor, a random hillbilly, or the corrupt sheriff."
- It was in fact the corrupt sheriff.
- And done again at the end of the episode as the sheriff was an identical cousin of Hoop and they wound up arresting the wrong guy. But as Stroker, Double Wide and the Sheriff are leaving, the former two notice the sheriff rubbing his hands evilly. They question this before u-turning back to the police compound to be on the safe side.
- The Guards Must Be Crazy: Averted and lampshaded in "The Wrath of Khan'Ja" when Stroker knocks out a guard and steals his clothes to try to get into the FPI headquarters. It turns out the other guard was watching the camera.
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Composed of Pun Based Titles
- I'm Dying, Please Take My MacGuffin: Lampshaded. A dying karate instructor entrusts the handle of a magic sword to Stroker's son Keith and warns that reuniting the handle with the pieces of the blade would be disastrous. Stroker asks why, if it's such a big deal, the sword wasn't destroyed completely, even suggesting flushing it down the toilet or something.
- When the sword is reassembled, it's nothing more than an over sized flashlight. Hoop, who was fighting with the villain using the sword, noted that when the sword was broken and separated centuries ago, that people in ancient China would've seen that as amazing or terrifying.
- Of course, when you shine the light on the dead...
- Instant Sedation: Parodied. A camera guy gets hit in the head and falls down unconscious. After Stroker tries to explain to the other crew member that this trope is what's going on, he pretends he's knocked rather than risk brain damage/death.
- Interrupted Cooldown Hug: In "Ninja Worrier", when Hoop manages to convince Souko not to kill him after he kills her ex-boyfriends avenging Stroker's (fake) death, but Stroker ends up shooting her, causing her to fall into power lines and eventually get run over.
- Logic Bomb: Stroker notices a particularly devastating flaw in the cannibal cult's logic.
Cultists: Eat a person, be a person, eat a person, be a person...
Stroker: So wait, your philosophy is you are what you eat, right?
Cult Leader: Yes.
Stroker: So, if I eat a hamburger, then I'm a hamburger, right?
Cult Leader: Yes.
Stroker: And then...if you eat me, you're hamburgers too, right?
Cult Leader: ...
- Meaningful Name: Khan'Ja = Conned Ya
- Most Common Super Power: In 'XXX Wife'. Actually was a superpower, as Areola's areolas could hypnotize almost anyone into doing almost anything.
- Mugged for Disguise: Stroker and Hoop mug two camera men for a disguise, with Stroker breaking a bottle on one guys head, with th other freaking out, when the first man no longer moves. He convinces them not to knock him out (and possibly give him a concussion), by pretending to be unconscious. The two proceed to waste a lot of time getting the guys out of their clothes (with the conscious guy having to loosen his belt), and Hoop insisting on putting on one's underwear. The guy they're supposed to spy on gets mad when his "Camera Crew" turn up almost an hour late.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Pretty much the entire series.
- Not-So-Harmless Villain: Hoop's mother Rose, when wrongfully imprisoned after being framed for murder, kills an inmate who stabbed her, then fakes her suicide in order to get Coroner Rick help her escape. And when he doesn't comply, threatens to give him a "Colombian jockstrap" by holding a knife to his crotch.
- Oh, Crap: After waking up from a night of drunken sex with a blonde bombshell, things go quickly downhill for Stroker.
- Parody Names
C.A.R.R.: "On Dashiell, on Danzig, on Randolph, on Blitzkrieg, on other non-copyrighted names!"
- Reality Ensues: Many examples Played for Laughs, see Mugged for Disguise above
- Regret Eating Me: When it looks like he's going to be eaten by cannibals, Stroker tells them, "I hope you choke on my assbone bitches."
- Reliably Unreliable Guns: Combined with Accidental Aiming Skills at the start of one episode. Stroker and Hoop are held up by a Columbian drug dealer and are forced to drop their guns.. which go off, injuring both the drug dealer and his wife (who was inexplicably not present until just then). Stroker immediately lampshades it by stating he can't shoot that well when he actually aims.
- Skyward Scream: "KHAAAAAAAAAAAN...ja"
- Take That: The New Hampshire Fuzzy Bear company to the Vermont Teddy Bear Company.
- Almost every episode has a take that to somebody or some company, from Ronco to Ron Howard.
- Tap on the Head: Averted and lampshaded
- Yet Another Christmas Carol: The episode "I Saw Stroker Killing Santa Claus".
- The Adult Swim Stroker and Hoop website