Western Animation: TaleSpin
adventure cartoon from the DuckTales
era, this series transplants several characters from Disney's adaptation of The Jungle Book
into a show about the golden age of seaplane travel, featuring Petting Zoo People
. Essentially an animated Tales of the Gold Monkey
- especially as one of the key locations is Louie's, an island bar run by the titular orangutan. Also has elements of a Lighter and Softer
, Disney version of Crimson Skies
(particularly the Air Pirates; see below).
Baloo the bear is a seaplane cargo-for-hire operator from the port city of Cape Suzette in a time not unlike the 1930s. His twin-engine flying boat, the Sea Duck
, is his most prized possession, and he favors his freedom over all else, including paying his bills. When the bank forecloses on his debts, a young entrepreneur/lady bear/single mother named Rebecca Cunningham snaps up his business, his plane, and his home, and opens the "Higher-For-Hire" air cargo service. Rather than abandon his "baby" to her and whatever low-rent pilot she may hire, he stays on, working for the day when he can buy back the Sea Duck
and be rid of her.
Early on, he picks up a young stowaway, Kit Cloudkicker, who eventually earns the post of Baloo's navigator and sidekick. A daring barnstormer and aspiring pilot, Kit uses a collapsible airfoil to glide behind the Sea Duck
on a line, and is responsible for much of the derring-do of the series in contrast to his overweight chum.Outside the odd subtle occasion,
there's not a lot of romance between Becky and Baloo: their relationship smacks more of Sibling Rivalry
. The two of them — with Kit and Becky's adorable daughter Molly
— form a definite sitcom family dynamic, with the practical, strait-laced Becky faced off against her lazy, easygoing, roguish pilot.
Allies of the crew include Louie (the orangutan monarch from The Jungle Book
) who operates a seaplane truckstop of sorts out in the ocean that is Baloo's favorite hangout; and Wildcat, a seemingly slow-witted mechanic with incredible skills.
There are three major antagonists: the Air Pirates, led by Don Karnage, who operate from a giant flying aircraft carrier
called the Iron Vulture
(and would have long ago plundered Cape Suzette, had it not been for all those big honkin' guns on the nearby cliffs); the country of Thembria, a pseudo-Soviet totalitarian state full of snow and blue warthogs, home to the napoleonic
Col. Spigot and his Sergeant Schultz
-like sidekick, Sgt. Dunder; and Shere Khan, the most feared predator of The Jungle Book
, transformed into a Corrupt Corporate Executive
... though it could be argued that he's not actually corrupt
- merely absolutely ruthless in the best senses of the phrase.
Refer to the Character Sheet
for more details.
Provides Examples Of:
- 65-Episode Cartoon
- Abnormal Ammo:
- The Thembrian air defenses consist of catapults launching bathtubs, pianos, and other random objects, because the paperwork for getting actual ammo for their AA cannons is more of a nightmare than the Thembrian prisons.
- In part two of "Plunder and Lightning", Baloo escapes an attack by dumping a load of fruit on the air pirates.
- Similarly, in "Citizen Khan", Kit and Wildcat throw rotten fruit on the corrupt sheriff and his sidekick, causing them to crash.
- Absent-Minded Professor: Baloo's friend Buzz from "Baloo Thunder" and "Bullethead Baloo" counts for this in spades.
- Absurdly Spacious Sewer: The sewer in the episode, "Bringing Down Babyface" is (just barely) big enough for Baloo to fly the Sea Duck through.
- Accidental Misnaming:
- Colonel Spigot!
- Also "it's Rebecca, not Becky", though she grows attached to the nickname later on.
- The Ace: Whistlestop Jackson, hero to millions!
- Broken Ace: Whistlestop apparently has been struggling ever since aviation vehicles started evolving and becoming too complex for him to properly handle and briefly considers dissolving into obscurity until Baloo snaps him out of it.
- Inverted with the ironically named character Ace London.
- Ace Custom: The Sea Duck, a hydroplane freighter that Baloo and Wildcat customized up the gazoo. Which includes, of course, the Over Drive system.
- Acrofatic: Baloo isn't a particularly skilled fighter, though can deal a mean punch, and is quite agile, considering his size.
- Adventurer Archaeologist: Three of them, all guest stars.
- Adventurer Outfit: Rebecca wears one in a few episodes, and it's Myra's standard apparel.
- Affably Evil: Both Shere Khan and Don Karnage.
- Affectionate Nickname: Baloo dishes out a lot of these, but perhaps the most notable are "Lil' Britches" (for Kit) and "Becky" (for Rebecca). Rebecca's treatment of her nickname also mirrors the trope, only accepting it when she is on happy terms with Baloo. Kit calls Baloo Mowgli's nickname for the original, "Papa Bear".
- Airborne Aircraft Carrier: The Iron Vulture.
- Alien Invasion: Baloo and Kit fake one in "War of the Weirds".
- The Alleged Boss: Rebecca Cunningham plays with this. She has Control Freak issues and is perfectly willing to push Baloo and others around in her schemes; however, she is usually all bark and no bite, and usually acts more as a bossy childish friend than an authority figure, something Baloo takes advantage of time and time again.
- All There in the Manual: The short-lived comic series confirms Becky's status as a widow and goes into some detail about Kit's life before linking up with Don Karnage.
- All Women Are Lustful: Louie's aunt, Louise in "The Ransom of Red Chimp", who is attracted to men with accents and goes after Don Karnage, and later her flying rival, a French pilot named Jacques Toujour.
- Animation Bump: To an extent, due to the animation being exported from six different studios note , the style and quality varied to rather noticeable degrees on occasion. This was common with most Disney cartoons at this point.
- Some of the high points are in the four part pilot "Plunder And Lightning" and "Pizza Pie In The Sky", which were animated by Disney France.
- Anti-Villain: Shere Khan. Sure, he engages in Evil Plans from time to time and can be ruthless when he needs to, but he is genuinely fond of the heroes and certainly has a conscience, and generally doesn't cross any lines that there's no going back from. Think David Xanatos, but nicer.
- Anthropomorphic Shift: From The Jungle Book.
- Louie can be considered an inversion of sorts. He is given an anthropomorphic role and wears a human attire, though his design and proportions are actually more hunched over and simian-like than his original The Jungle Book counterpart.
- Are You Pondering What I'm Pondering?: The vast majority of the scenes with Don Karnage and Gibber, and some dialogs between Baloo and Wildcat.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: In "Louie's Last Stand", Dougie Benson, a minor businessman in Shere Khan's company, attempts to evict Louie from his property by forging Khan's signature on documents that mobilize his company pilots into a makeshift mook-army. When Khan finds out, he dresses Dougie down for forgery, misuse of company property, and his now soot-stained coat not being up to company dress code.
- In the episode, "Bringing Down Babyface", after Baloo and Babyface Half-Nelson escape from the police, Officer Malarkey calls for backup, telling them, "Suspects are armed, dangerous, and wearing festive party hats."
- A-Team Firing: But at least they use real bullets, unlike some cartoons.
- Awesome McCoolname: Kit Cloudkicker, Ace London.
- The Bad Guy Wins: Happens with Shere Khan at least twice.
- "Whistlestop Jackson, Legend" ends with the titular famous pilot retiring after the satisfaction of one last heroic feat, but it is revealed that Khan, who held a grudge against Jackson, had intended for him to retire all along.
- "Save the Tiger" ends with the reveal that Khan was secretly behind Baloo's kidnapping.
- Badass Adorable: Kit, and to a lesser extent Molly.
- Oscar from "Captain Outrageous" earns this status at the end of the episode when he Takes A Level In Badass and saves Baloo, Kit, and Wildcat from the pirates.
- Badass Bookworm: Myra from "In Search of Ancient Blunders". She doesn't really fight, but she does drop a piano on Dumptruck's head—and then there's her Beware the Nice Ones moment with the mummy.
- Badass Princess: Princess Lotta Lamour from "The Road to Macadamia". She's not afraid to confront her kingdom's Evil Chancellor ("Touch me and you're dust, buster!"), and during a fight she knocks out several of the chancellor's Mooks with a big mallet.
- Barefoot Cartoon Animal: Many characters, including Rebecca, Molly, Wildcat and Shere Khan in the main cast.
- Beary Friendly/Beary Funny: Baloo, Rebecca, Molly and Kit.
- Beleaguered Assistant: Kit sometimes is this due to Baloo's occasional idiocies and Jerkass tendencies. Rebecca and Baloo himself often play this trope as well, depending on who is leading the madness.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: Baloo and Rebecca are all over this, being patterned after Sam and Diane from Cheers.
- Benevolent Boss/Mean Boss/Pointy-Haired Boss: Rebecca can be considered an unusual mix of all three tropes in one. While she mostly leaned towards the first due to her protagonist role and viewing her employees more as her friends, her occasional temperament, superiority complex and outright quirkiness leads to her being less than pleasant to work with on occasion, especially in early episodes.
- Shere Khan himself was a mix of the first two of those. He is deadly serious, hates having his time wasted and is extremely strict, but he values hard work and albeit he's quite demanding, he is also fair to his employees.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Myra from "In Search of Ancient Blunders".
- Also Wildcat, Rebecca, Kit, and even Molly fit this trope most of the time.
- Beware the Silly Ones: Don Karnage.
- The majority of villains for that matter. While they are nearly all bumbling wackos the majority of them do at least pose as a sort of plausible threat.
- Big Damn Heroes: Baloo is known for doing this in quite a few episodes with "Plunder And Lightning" and "Last Horizons" being some of the most famous examples.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Rebecca arguably leans inside the fine line between this and a Jerk with a Heart of Gold. She is a Nice Girl deep down, but too often tries to hide her bad temper and ego problems in a professional facade rather than her genuine positive traits.
- Blondes Are Evil: Kitten Caboodle and Muffy Vanderschmeer.
- Inverted for Muffy, since she is later revealed to be wearing a wig.
- Body Swap: "A Baloo Switcheroo".
- Book Dumb: Baloo to a ridiculous extent.
- Bound and Gagged: Happens to both Baloo and Rebecca on a few odd occasions, as well as to Shere Khan of all people, in "Bullethead Baloo".
- Brainy Brunette: Rebecca, of course.
- Bratty Half-Pint: Either Kit or Molly, Depending on the Writer.
- Kit's friend Ernie definitely counts. He's such an entitled little maggot that it's a wonder Kit is even friends with him.
- Breaking Bad News Gently: Parodied in "Bearly Alive".
Doctor (over the phone): You'd better sit down.
Rebecca: I am sitting down.
Doctor: Then stand up.
Rebecca (standing): Okay, now I'm standing up.
Doctor: Now you'd better sit down.
- Break the Haughty: Both Baloo and Rebecca fall victim to this, over and over and over...
- Broken Aesop: "War of the Weirds" sees Baloo stage a Martian invasion to get out of working. Then along comes Army Intelligence officer Colonel Grogg who thinks the invasion is real. So the gang further trick Grogg by scaring him so badly he runs away, and while he's gone, they dispose of all of the props and costumes, so that when he returns, it appears to his superior General Tumult that he's going insane, and Tumult demotes him. The unfortunate implication being that lying is bad, but lying to get out of trouble for lying is fine, even if it ruins someone's life.
- Bumbling Dad: Baloo, of the surrogate variety.
- Bunny Ears Mechanic: Wildcat. A cheerful Cloudcuckoolander and generally unaware of social niceties, true. But he was also a genius mechanic, a competent pilot (albeit with few directional skills), and (on occasion, such as in "The Flight of the Snow Duck") surprisingly perceptive regarding matters of the heart.
- Baloo can be considered something of a "Bunny Ears Pilot" as well, slovenly, obnoxious and Book Dumb, but is an ingenius and versatile flyer (including piloting prototype helicopters and a bare jet engine!). One could argue whether Rebecca's quirks make her a "Bunny Ears Businesswoman" as well.
- Butt Monkey: Colonel Spigot and Douglas Benson from "Louie's Last Stand". Baloo and Rebecca also have some moments.
- Buzzing The Deck:
- Baloo is known to do this literally, using his propeller to trim hedges at times, as seen in the show's opening, upside-down, no less.
- Baloo got buzzed himself once in flight and was not happy about it, especially when he found out who he'd just been buzzed by, Ace London.
- Casting Gag: The decision to cast Ed Gilbert and R.J. Williams as Baloo and Kit, respectively. They had previously been cast as a father-and-son bear duo in the mid-1980s NBC cartoon Kissyfur.
- Cat Fight: Rebecca had one with most female villains. Mainly Kitten Kaboodle in "A Star Is Torn" and Muffy Vanderschmeer in "A Touch Of Glass".
- Chain of Deals: "Double or Nothing".
- Chained Heat: "Stuck on You".
- Characterization Marches On: Kit's history with Don Karnage and the Sky Pirates seems to be all but forgotten in episodes following the pilot, to the point the two seem rather inept about each other outside their connections with Baloo. Karnage rarely refers to Kit as anything outside the generic label of "Baloo's little friend".
- Ironically Col. Spigot's first appearance in "The Idol Rich" is about the one time he and Baloo instantly recognise each other.
- Cheerful Child: Molly Cunningham. She's rambunctious and not above a little blackmail to get what she wants. However, in the major incident she did that, she didn't hesitate afterward to bail out Baloo when her mother threatened to fire him.
- The Chessmaster: Shere Khan.
- Chick Magnet: Baloo has won affection and attention from Katie Dodd, Princess Lotta Lamour, Kitten Caboodle, Myra, Plane Jane, Sally the radio host, and even Rebecca herself, so he definitely deserves a spot here.
- Christmas Episode: "A Jolly Molly Christmas".
- City of Adventure: Cape Suzette.
- Clip Its Wings: In "Flight of the Snow Duck", Baloo, Wildcat and Molly escape from a Thembrian prison by flying a plane made completely out of ice, while being pursued by military fighters. When one of the wings gets shot off, Wildcat scoops some water out of a lake and tosses over the wing's stub, instantly repairing it.
- Cloudcuckooland: Thembria.
- Cloudcuckoolander: Wildcat. Baloo and even Rebecca on occasion have lighter bouts of this too.
- Comically Serious: Shere Khan (somewhat in contrast to the hammier Smug Snake he was in The Jungle Book). The odd occasions a smile does appear on his face usually spells big trouble for someone.
- Commissar Cap: Baloo wears one of these.
- Also part of Spigot's military uniform - as with all the Thembrian military.
- Complaining About Rescues They Don't Like: Baloo and Kit get this a lot due to their occasionally haphazard manner of saving the day, though they're usually rather open about what they think of the situation.
- Contagious Cassandra Truth: In "It Came from Beneath the Sea Duck", Kit is chewed out by Rebecca for taking Molly outside the apartment while babysitting (in reality this was for a load of convoluted reasons). Baloo is Genre Savvy enough to suggest letting Kit explain what happened, however Rebecca just assumes that Kit learned his irresponsible behaviour from him and shushes him too.
- Continuity Cameo: A lot of supposed One-Scene Wonder characters from specific episodes make background cameos in others (even previous villains such as Kitten Caboodle and Muffy and Buffy oddly enough). Sometimes counts as an Early-Bird Cameo.
- Control Freak: Rebecca plays with this. While she has a rather shrill attitude and frequently manipulates or bullies Baloo and the others into following her schemes, she fails to have much intimidation over them or take much action against their own incompetent or obnoxious habits, leading her to come off more as a bossy friend than a domineering boss.
- Conjunction Interruption/Not Now, Kiddo: Often the bane of Molly and Kit's lives, usually issued by Rebecca (the more Genre Savvy Baloo even notes a couple of occasions it might be worth listening to them).
- Convection Shmonvection: Baloo has flown into a volcano several times before with the Sea Duck escaping with only mild burns on the plane.
- Cool and Unusual Punishment: Don Karnage is fond of these.
- Cool Plane: The Sea Duck, natch: a rare case of a beat-up, unarmed cargo hauler getting the kind of love usually reserved for fighter planes. There are many, many other examples - stunt planes, crop-dusters, a multitude of flying boats - some pulled from genuine aviation history and others seeming to parody it.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: Semi-subverted by Shere Khan. Khan is ruthless and can be quite vicious and vindictive. However, he has a moral code and a sense of honor, and his rivals are usually much worse than he is. Many of his appearances have him as a protagonist, and his antagonist appearances frequently end with him saying something along the lines of "You are right and I will stop taking the action you are opposing. Now get out before I change my mind". Furthermore, if he hires you for a job and knows your moral principles, the job will likely be dangerous, but it will be doable, agree with your conscience, and he pays very well in the end.
- Whether or not it's subverted or not is completely up to the episode. In one episode he'll recruit the sky pirates to attack planes and create a fake fuel shortage. In another he'll swear a life debt. The most consistent thing about this show is its inconsistency.
- Title Cards Always Lie: The title card of the episode "The Ransom of Red Chimp" has Don Karnage in his signature air pirate uniform, while in the actual episode he's wearing a bathing costume all throughout the episode.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Baloo always manages to save the day.
- Cute Bruiser: Rebecca earned this status at the end of the episode "A Touch Of Glass".
- Cut Song: A scene in the TV movie "Plunder & Lightning" where Rebecca sings "Home Is Where The Heart Is", a lullaby to Molly as Kit listens in was cut for time when it was split into four episodes.
- Damn, It Feels Good to Be a Gangster : Trader Moe and his lackeys.
- Dashing Hispanic: Don Karnage fancies himself as one of these, but invariably comes off as just buffoonish. Note, though, that, while he may not be Badass per se, he's still very dangerous.
- A Day in the Limelight: "Flight School Confidential" is focused largely on Kit venturing to Thembria, with Baloo only having a brief role in the opening and closing moments. A couple of episodes also focus primarily on Rebecca and Molly's relationship.
- Dead All Along: "The Old Man and the Sea Duck" ends with Baloo discovering that the man that had taught him to fly again had been dead and gone for 20 years, and that the airfield he trained at was a broken down husk of its former self.
- Also in "Her Chance To Dream", Rebecca's new love interest Captain William Stansbury is revealed to be the ghost of the captain who crashed his boat on Louie's island centuries ago.
- Deadpan Snarker: Both Rebecca and Baloo to extremes.
- Death Glare: Despite Rebecca's appearance, she actually has given Baloo a pretty scary one from time to time.
- Depending on the Writer: Both Baloo and Rebecca's personalities occasionally come off as erratic due to constantly passing off the Sanity Ball (eg. one can be completely gullible or arrogant towards a situation identical to one they were totally wary of in a previous episode). Their Not So Different tendencies also shift from episode to episode (sometimes Rebecca is Baloo's polar opposite, others they are borderline Distaff Counterparts for each other).
- Determinator: In both a negative and positive sense, Baloo and Rebecca are very stubborn individuals, be it for Zany Schemes or heroics. Rebecca is also shown to be very protective of Baloo, to the point of potential self-sacrifice; Baloo, in turn, will go to great lengths to aid or protect her.
- Did Not Do the Bloody Research: In "Bygones", the English pilot Rick Sky actually says the word "Bloody".
- Diesel Punk
- Dirty Communists: Not explicitly said to be communist, but Thembria is obviously meant to be a stand in for the Soviet Union.
- In one episode, Baloo actually refers to the Thembrians as "commies."
- Disappeared Dad: Molly's. Kit's missing both parents.
- In the comics it explains that Molly's father is deceased and that Rebecca is unfortunately a widow.
- The show itself leaves Rebecca's status up for the audience to guess. Gets confusing when a woman in the 30's can be a single mom and nobody cares.
- Disco Tech: Tinabula.
- Distracted by the Sexy: The reason Baloo and Louie help Katie find the lost city of Tinabula, even though they didn't want to go treasure hunting in the episode "For Whom The Bell Klangs".
- This also happens to Baloo and Louie when they help Princess Lotta Lamour in "The Road to Macadamia".
- This is the main reason that Baloo won't listen to Rebecca when she tells Baloo that Kitten Kaboodle is responsible for the "accidents" that have been happening on the movie set in the episode "A Star Is Torn".
- "Cool Hands" Luke is obviously smitten by "Tan-Margaret" (aka Baloo) in "Feminine Air", even though they are competitors in an air race.
- Distressed Damsel: Happens to Rebecca and Molly on occasion. Baloo and Kit aren't immune to the trope either.
- Also Katie Dodd when she is kidnapped.
- Ditzy Genius: Rebecca.
- Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Rebecca's treatment of Baloo leans towards this on occasion (though granted Baloo can find lots of non-violent methods of dishing it back out).
- Downer Ending: "Your Baloo's In The Mail", albeit Played for Laughs (though apparently a few fans insist otherwise).
- The Drag-Along: Rebecca on some occasions, who doesn't appreciate Baloo's tendency to turn a simple cargo mission into a dangerous adventure or Zany Scheme (not that she doesn't force Baloo into a few badly thought ones as well at times).
- Ear Ache: Rebecca frequently drags Baloo away by his ear in an argument.
- Ear Notch: Don Karnage has one.
- Ears as Hair: With bows around them, Molly's ears become Girlish Pigtails.
- Easy Amnesia: In "The Old Man and the Sea Duck", with a dose of Laser-Guided Amnesia too; it only affects Baloo's piloting skills, forcing him to re-learn them. However, the cliche of the second blow is avoided as Baloo's memory returns when he re-experiences the joy of flying again.
- Easy Come, Easy Go: Several episodes.
- Elmuh Fudd Syndwome: Played with in "Waiders of the Wost Tweasure". "Wuby Wings" wasn't a mispronunciation of "Ruby Rings", rather, it was "Ruby Wings".
- Enemy Eats Your Lunch: In "Plunder and Lighting", Don Karnage intimidates the customers of Louie's through drinking someone's drink.
- Episode Title Card: Done for only two episodes, "The Ransom of Red Chimp" and "Jolly Molly Christmas".
- Even Evil Has Standards: Shere Khan has several moments of this. He is at the very least Genre Savvy enough to know the consequences of Kicking The Dog too many times.
- A particularly good example of this is in the end of the episode "Citizen Khan".
Clementine: So you never told the sheriff to mistreat the miners?
Shere Khan: My dear, I desire only money and power. Unpresentable employees provide me with neither.
- Everyone Loves Blondes: Baloo for Kitten Kaboodle in "A Star Is Torn" and Wildcat for Clementine Clevenger in "Citizen Khan".
- Everything's Better with Princesses: Princess Grace from "Waiders of the Wost Tweasure" and Princess Lotta Lamour in "The Road to Macadamia".
- Evil Chancellor: Chancellor Trample from "The Road to Macadamia".
- Evil Is Hammy: Don Karnage.
- Exact Words: "When I say 'FIRE', then you FIRE!"
- Expy: Rebecca, according to Word of God is based on Rebecca Howe of Cheers in both aspects of personality and her chemistry with the main protagonist.
- The business situation is very similar to Cheers as well: Entrepreneurial businesswoman takes over a failing business run by a laid-back owner and attempts to change his ways to make the business profitable, Hilarity Ensues.
- Kit is also obviously meant to be an Expy for Mowgli in places. While he has enough unique traits to differentiate the two, his relationship with Baloo is very similar (right down to using the same affectionate nicknames for each other).
- The three major Thembrians: Col. Spigot, Sgt. Dunder and the High Marshall are Expies (and parodies) of Col. Wilhelm Klink, Sgt. Hans Schultz, and General Albert Burkhalter from Hogan's Heroes.
- Although the High Marshall is also a very obvious visual Expy of Leonid Brezhnev.
- And as mentioned above, the show is based loosely on Tales of the Gold Monkey, making Baloo, Wildcat and Louie expies of Jake, Corky and, er, Louie.
- Failure Is the Only Option: Baloo's goal: to buy his plane back from Becky.
- He did buy it back once, though handed back the rights after realising the process was destroying Becky's business, implying he is pretty much set to work at Higher For Hire, willingly or not.
- Fake Defector: At one point in "Plunder & Lightning" Kit rejoins the pirates, regaining Karnage's trust by pretending he didn't really care about his new friends, so he can convince Karnage to let his friends go. This is Played for Drama, with Baloo convinced that Kit has betrayed him until later in the story.
- Faked Rip Van Winkle: The plot of "The Time Bandit".
- Family-Friendly Firearms: Interestingly enough, almost utterly averted. Don Karnage's men fire what appear to be real tracers out of their machine guns, the Cape Suzette anti-aircraft guns are firing real flak shells, and in one episode Baloo is chased by gangsters with very realistic-looking revolvers that fire real bullets. The few exceptions are justified, such as AA guns that shoot pies during an air race, since they are designed to hinder the racing pilots, not kill them.
- Fanfare: For the heroic moments.
- Fan Of The Underdog: Baloo, for all his faults, is idolized greatly by Kit.
Kit: You're "somebody" to me.
- Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Thembria is the Soviet Union with boars.
- Fat Bastard: The High Marshall, no question about it.
- Fiery Redhead: Katie Dodd.
- Fish out of Water: Rebecca to an extent. Though one could argue it's the one element preventing her from being Baloo's Distaff Counterpart.
- Four-Episode Pilot
- A Fool and His New Money Are Soon Parted:
- In "Save the Tiger", Baloo saves Shere Khan's life and Khan owes him a debt in return. At first, Baloo asks for a few simple things, but when he realizes that Shere Khan is one of the richest and most powerful men in the word, he buys back his plane, isolates most of his friends, and eventually becomes bored with his new wealth and gifts. His endless lists of demands end up irritating Khan, who secretly arranges for Baloo to be kidnapped and held for ransom that equals the amount of all the things Baloo asked from Khan and Higher for Hire. Towards the end of the episode, Rebecca and Kit save Baloo, and Baloo's final request is to have everything back to the way it was before.
- In "The Balooest of the Blue Bloods", Baloo inherits a mansion and the butler and maid try to kill him so they can inherit it for themselves. The mansion gets repossessed at the end of the episode.
- Forged Message: In one episode one of Shere Khan's executives, Benson, tried to force Louie out of his club by writing a letter that said, "Do whatever Mr. Benson says." and forging Khan's signature, thus making the Khan pilot force think they were on a sanctioned assignment.
- Five-Temperament Ensemble: Rebecca (choleric), Kit (melancholic), Wildcat (leuquine), Baloo (sanguine), and Molly (phlegmatic).
- For the Evulz: Don Karnage and Shere Khan, though usually more ambitious villains, occasionally are guilty of this.
- Thembria seems to be an entire population enforced by "evil" standards and customs. Acts such as fun and laughter can land you a hefty jail sentence.
- Four-Fingered Hands: Almost all characters have them, but there are a (very) few exceptions, such as the five-fingered Princess Lotta Lamour and Kitten Kaboodle.
- Some inconsistencies have also occurred in this area, like Shere Khan having four fingers in one episode and five fingers in another episode.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: See Five-Temperament above.
- The Freelance Shame Squad: In "A Jolly Molly Christmas" a rowdy group catch Louie posing as Santa for Molly, taking off his disguise and cackling insanely, completely ignorant of the disillusioned six year old running out of the bar in tears.
- Friend or Idol Decision: Baloo has an almost unhealthy obsession with the Sea Duck and will scold anyone for laying a finger on it without permission. Nevertheless, it's established from the very first episode that he would sacrifice it in an instant to save his friends and surrogate family.
- Friend to All Living Things: Wildcat proves that this description fits him in "Paradise Lost" and "The Sound And The Furry". Also Kit in "All's Whale That Ends Whale" and Molly in "Mommy For A Day".
- Funny Foreigner: Don Karnage. Colonel Spigot and Private Dunder, to an extent, too.
- Furry Female Mane: Fairly standard for the female characters, with the exception of Muffy Vanderschmeer.
- Futile Hand Reach: Myra and Baloo do this during "In Search of Ancient Blunders".
- Gainax Ending: Arguable example with "Flying Dupes". Like most Disney Afternoon shows, the series is left open ended, with the finale focusing near solely on Baloo attempting to give Col. Spigot flying lessons. It doesn't help that this episode was banned on certain networks.
- Genius Ditz: Wildcat, a Cloudcuckoolander of the highest order but neverless can fix a high number of mechanical issues in a matter of seconds (at least for what his provided apparatus allows).
- Word of God claims Baloo and Rebecca were meant to foil each other in this regard. Baloo is extremely Book Dumb and slovenly, but also streetwise and resourceful due to his adventuring (as well as being a grade A Ace Pilot). In contrast Rebecca is well educated and has profound business ethics, but due to her pampered lifestyle is somewhat naive and inept to the outside world. Depending on what the scenario fit, either character would play The Ditz while another would act as The Straight Man.
- Genre Throwback: This show is like watching a Republic Pictures serial film...except everyone is a Funny Animal or in some cases they appear as Petting Zoo People.
- Gentle Giant: Baloo, at least when not in Jerkass mode. Sgt. Dunder, despite his occupation, also seems to apply.
- Also Moby Dimple from "All's Whale That Ends Whale".
- Get It Over With: In "The Time Bandit", Rebecca eventually finds the long drawn execution ceremony more torturous than death itself.
Rebecca: [sobs] JUST GET IT OVER WITH! SHOOT ME!!!
- Girl of the Week: This was a standard theme in the show, and many of them have pretty generous fan bases.
- Girls with Moustaches: Rebecca disguises herself with a moustache and beard in both "Plunder and Lightning" and "The Balooest of the Bluebloods".
- Glasses Girl: Katie Dodd and Myra.
- The Grinch: In "Jolly Molly Christmas", Don Karnage decides the Sky Pirates will show the true spirit of giving; by making others give presents to them.
Don Karnage: I am not usually this generous, but Christmas comes only once a year.
- Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Baloo, Kit and Louie, among others. Baloo calls Kit "Little Britches" (breeches) in spite of neither of them wearing pants at all, presumably as a Shout-Out to the Jungle Book Baloo calling Mowgli by the same nickname.
- This even applies to the one episode where Baloo has to wear a tuxedo. Said tuxedo consists of a jacket, shirt, tie, and cummerbund...and that's it.
- Heel-Face Turn: Kit, who leaves the Air Pirates before the series begins.
- Heroes Want Redheads: Baloo and Louie spend most of the two part episode "For Whom The Bell Klangs" trying to win over Katie Dodd.
- Heroic BSOD: Baloo does this in "A Bad Reflection On You".
- Rebecca has a lighter variant in "I Only Have Ice For You".
- Heroic Sacrifice: Baloo does this in the end of "Plunder And Lightning" where he rams the Sea Duck into Don Karnage's lightning gun and destroys it along with his plane that he had just reclaimed ownership for.
- Rebecca also attempts this in "A Star Is Torn" by driving an booby trapped plane that Baloo was intended to fly for a stunt. However, Baloo saves her in time. She also does so in "Save The Tiger" by selling Higher For Hire to pay for ransom money after Baloo is supposedly kidnapped in Shere Khan's Evil Plan.
- Hero Insurance: Subverted, this is often the reason Baloo comes off just as penniless following his good deeds than beforehand, with him often being rewarded, and then charged for his rather hazardous acts of heroism. Depending on how neccessary his acts of destruction were, this can lead some of his clients to come off as Ungrateful Bastards.
- High-Class Glass: Rich Baloo in "Save the Tiger" acquires a monocle along with his fancy suit.
- Homage: Thembria, the USSR Expy, is populated by warthogs. Anyone remember Animal Farm?
- Horrible Judge of Character: Rebecca occasionally takes deals from rather shifty clients to say the least.
Rebecca: Jack is on a mission for the government, can't you understand?
Baloo: Oh I understand, I just don't believe. I don't think he's really a spy.
Rebecca: Oh? Then how do you explain the trenchcoat, huh? That's a spy's trenchcoat!
- Hot Archeologist: Myra and Katie Dodd.
- Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Considering Baloo's size, this is a given with most females on the show, but he and Rebecca are the most common example.
- Humanoid Female Animal: Kitten Kaboodle and Clementine Clevenger.
- Hurricane of Puns: Much like DuckTales, everything original to the series has a name which has some level of punniness to it.
- Hypocritical Humor:
- "Sheepskin Deep" has a kangaroo mailman insist that the postal service never loses letters...right before dropping several letters as he hops away.
- "The Incredible Shrinking Molly" ends with the scientist having an idea to invent television, with Baloo, Rebecca, and Kit immediately ridiculing the idea, unaware that their adventures are a television show. Keep in mind that the series takes place in the 1930's, before television was invented.
- If I Can't Have You: Done rather ridiculously in "Feminine Air", an episode where Baloo dresses as a woman in order to enter a females-only flying contest. One of his rivals is so besotted with his female persona that he proposes and, when he's turned down, invokes this trope and starts trying to kill "her".
- I Know You Know I Know: In "Waiders of the Wost Tweasure":
Baloo: You're the one with the map. Which is the door to the treasure?
Plane Jane: That one.
Baloo: Hold it! You wouldn't tell me the right door. But you know that I know that you wouldn't tell me the right door, so this is the right door.
- Improbable Piloting Skills: Baloo is so good a pilot he can pilot a plane even if he has to resort to directly manipulating the control cables to a craft's flaps and rudder when the yoke was broke. Furthermore, in one episode, he was able to quickly learn how to fly a prototype helicopter, despite the fact that operating that kind of vehicle is a completely different (not to mention revolutionary for the 1930s) concept in aviation. And don't forget, he was able to successfully "pilot" a prototype jet engine merely by hanging on to it and tugging on it real hard. No wings, no rudder, no plane. Just the engine. He even broke the sound barrier while riding it.
- Incredible Shrinking Man: Molly (and later Baloo and Rebecca) in "The Incredible Shrinking Molly".
- Incredibly Lame Pun: The following exchange from "In Search of Ancient Blunders":
Don Karnage: Fire at will!
(Will runs away, screaming, as the other pirates try to shoot him)
Don Karnage: No, no, no, don't fire at Will, he is my second mate. Fire at the Sea Duck!
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: Rebecca is something of a pompous know-it-all who has nothing against pushing her weight around to get Baloo to follow orders. Whenever Baloo is taken out of the picture, however, things often fall apart due to Rebecca's physical and emotional dependance on him to help run the company. Some obvious dents left from being a single mother are also apparent.
- Inferred Survival: Due to the setting, airplanes crashing down happens quite often. Due to the fact that this is a Disney series aimed at kids, you can always see the pilots escaping just in time via parachute. Even though they didn't wear a parachute-backpack before and didn't have time to put one on... (Granted, the slapstick tone means any exceptions to this merely lead to Amusing Injuries).
- Innocent Prodigy: Kit has his moments of this.
- Insistent Terminology: Baloo prefers to call Rebecca "Becky;" early episodes show her arguing with him about it, wanting him to call her Rebecca, but when he finally does she says "It's Becky."
- Interspecies Romance
- There are three or four episodes which cast Baloo and Louie as competing, bumbling suitors for the Girl of the Week, who is neither a bear nor an orangutan.
- Implied by Princess Lotta Lamour's father, a rabbit. She is a fox, meaning that her mother must be a fox also.
- Unless Lotta was adopted.
- I Take Offense to That Last One:
Baloo: Because, [the pig is] messy, loud, obnoxious, ugly, and... *sniff* smelly.
Rebecca: Well, so are you. Besides, it's my plane.
Baloo: Who is she callin' messy?
- It Is Pronounced Tro PAY: Mr. Weasel in "Vowel Play" demands people pronounce it wee-ZEL, not WEE-sel.
- It Will Never Catch On: At the end of "The Incredible Shrinking Molly", the episode's Mad Scientist mentions that he's working on a new medium called "television", and Baloo scoffs at the notion of "moving pictures". They may have stood more a chance of getting away with it, if Baloo wasn't shown watching a "moving picture" at the start of the exact same episode.
- Jerkass: Ace London.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Both Baloo and Rebecca, though the extent of both the "Jerk" and the "heart of gold" element for both varies from episode to episode.
- Job-Stealing Robot: Baloo deals with one in "From Here to Machinery".
- Kangaroo Court: This is apparently the preferred "justice" system of the warthog-run Soviet Union expy Thembria. As Colonel Spigot explains to Rebecca Cunningham at one point (when she's just been arrested), the system is very simple and efficient: "First you will be given a fair trial. Then you will be shot."
- Kitchen Sink Included:
- In the episode, "Bringing Down Babyface", Baloo, Kit, and Rebecca are on the run from the law and are being chased through the sewers. The police try to stop them by stuffing items from stop signs and lights to a tree down the manholes. Baloo comments that the police used everything but the kitchen sink. They then dodge a kitchen sink, after which, Rebecca tells Baloo not to give them any more ideas. Baloo then comments that they didn't use a bathtub, and a bathtub falls on the Sea Duck. After which, Rebecca tells Baloo to be quiet.
- In the episode, "It Came From Beneath the Sea Duck", Don Karnage sends Mad Dog and Dump Truck into the city, telling them to steal everything, including the kitchen sink. Later, when the heroes have a confrontation with a giant squid, the squid accidentally rips the sink from Rebecca's kitchen and drops it into Mad Dog and Dump Truck's submarine. Don Karnage is not amused when they bring it to him.
- Knight in Shining Armor: An amusing literal example in "The Balooest of the Blue Bloods". Paranoid about inheriting a bad-luck curse, Baloo protects himself with medieval armor. This later becomes pivotal in saving Rebecca after she learns the truth behind the supposed curse.
- Knight in Sour Armor: Baloo on occasion acts as this. In "My Fair Baloo", for example, he is chastised for acting like a "buffoon" at a high class ball in the Spruce Moose. Almost immediately following this, he saves the guests from two attempted hijackings, a plane crash and being stranded on an isolated island.
Baloo: Now give me one good reason why I should bail those snot nosed money-grubbers.
Rebecca: Because you're better than them?
Baloo: ...Hmm, good answer. Let's go.
- Knight of Cerebus: Shere Khan is far less bumbling compared to the rest of the Rogues Gallery and can be pretty effective and dangerous if pushed hard enough. Of course the show did like to poke fun of his supposed "seriousness" at times. Interestingly this trope made its way into The Jungle Book incarnation for the sequel (in contrast to his counterpart in the original film, who was fearsome but too hammy and whimsical to count).
- Large Ham: As is the case with most Disney Afternoon characters voiced by Jim Cummings, Don Karnage (Speaking to you now! In his own voice!) fits this to a tee.
- About half the cast fits this trope to an extent, even some of the more Closer to Earth characters can't help hamming it up at times.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: "The Old Man and the Sea Duck".
- Laughably Evil: Don Karnage, who — despite nearly every one of his scenes being hilarious in some way (mostly due to the funny accent, eccentric antics, and a marked tendency to eat sets) — is one of the most legitimately dangerous bad guys on the show.
- Leitmotif: Wildcat frequently has a quirky flute melody accompany many of his appearances. The Disney Afternoon OST disk also includes numerous one shot tracks that signalled different characters and locations.
- Let There Be Snow: Molly's wish in "Jolly Molly Christmas".
- Line-of-Sight Name: While trying to come up with a name for the "deceased uncle" that left him $50,000, Baloo's eyes alight upon a vacuum cleaner and goes with "Hoover".
- Little Miss Badass: Molly in several episodes. Some of them being "Molly Coddled", "Mommy For A Day", and "The Incredible Shrinking Molly".
- Local Hangout: Louie's is this for pilots, except that it's not really local, being out in the middle of the ocean. This gets justified in one episode, where it turns out that Louie's is about one tankful of airplane fuel away from Cape Suzette (and presumably near a major air route.)
- Lonely Rich Kid: Oscar Vandershnoot in "Captains Outrageous".
- Luke Noun Verber: Kit Cloudkicker.
- They poke a little fun at the naming convention when Kit gets a They Just Didn't Care from the local newspaper:
Kit (reading): "Kit CLOWN-KICKER?!"
- Macross Missile Massacre: The pandas try this on Baloo. However, the missiles don't lock on the Sea Duck to perform a full-fledged Itano Circus because they're heat-seeking, and Baloo has loaded his plane with ice.
- Mad Scientist: At least three of them.
- Malaproper: Much of Don Karnage's dialogue fits the trope.
- Mama Bear: Rebecca is a literal example to Molly.
- Man Child: Wildcat. There are also times when Baloo and Rebecca don't quite act their age.
- Meaningful Name:
- Kit Cloudkicker. "Kit" can mean both "kite" (as he is when Sky Surfing and towed by the Sea Duck) and "small animal," which he is. "Cloudkicker" refers more overtly to his Sky Surfing.
- It also harkens to how he wants to kick the clouds of his troubled past away.
- Don Karnage, a pirate lord whose name evokes "carnage." Also overlaps with Names to Run Away From Really Fast.
- Mega-Maw Maneuver: In the first episode, the air pirates are harassing a Khan cargo plane, which ducks into a cloud bank, only to be swallowed by the Iron Vulture.
- The Millstone: Played around with Baloo. Though genuinely heroic, he is often as much the cause of the show's problems as he is the savior of them.
- Minion with an F in Evil: Sgt. Dunder, though astoundingly loyal to Col. Spigot, has a meek, friendly disposition and is friendly towards Baloo and Kit when he's on his own time. Spigot himself (as a minion to the glorious Peoples' Republic of Thembria!) is more of a Jerkass, a Well-Intentioned Extremist and/or a Punch Clock Villain than outright evil.
- Mirror Routine: Used in "A Bad Reflection on You".
- Missing Mom: Both of Kit's parents are missing and Princess Lotta Lamour's mother also.
- Mistaken for Dying: Used in "Bearly Alive", twice over.
- The Mole: Perry in "Baloo Thunder".
- Mood Whiplash: "Her Chance To Dream" is fairly light hearted and comical for the most part, with Rebecca obliviously becoming infatuated with a ghost that is tormenting Baloo and Louie. However, when Baloo finally convinces her who he is, he realises the terrible decision she now has to make...
- Morality Pet: Molly to Rebecca. Word of God says that Molly was written essentially to offset Rebecca's nagging tendencies towards Baloo, and bring out her softer and often more protective sides. Kit often brings out this element in Baloo as well.
- More Dakka: Don Karnage's Tri-Wing Terror consists of little more than an engine, a small cockpit, and six stubby wings which seem to be little more than mounts for the six large-caliber machine guns.
- Motive Decay: Somewhat. Depending on the Writer, Baloo could be insistent on working for Higher For Hire solely to get the Sea Duck back from Rebecca, or has grown accustomed to (if not outright enjoys) working for her. In "Save The Tiger", he basically retcons his insured wealth and ownership of the plane just so she can have her business back.
- Mummy: "In Search of Ancient Blunders".
- The Mutiny: Karnage's men try to overthrow their captain on a couple odd occasions, though they admittedly aren't brilliant at it.
- Mythology Gag: In "On a Wing and a Bear", Baloo uses the phrase "Bear Necessities", which calls back to the song of the same name he sung in The Jungle Book.
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Don Karnage.
- The Napoleon: Colonel Spigot.
- Nerds Are Sexy: Between Rebecca Cunningham, Katie Dodd, and Myra, this was inevitable.
- Never My Fault: The punishment for lot of offenses in Thembria, regardless of who is responsible for them, tend involve Spigot getting shot, who in turn blames a lot of his blunders on Dunder.
- Never Win the Lottery: In "Your Baloo's in the Mail", Rebecca wins a big prize from a radio station, then trusts lazy Baloo to deliver her winning ticket—without telling him how important it is. Hilarity Ensues. ..but as noted above, some fans don't appreciate that the Downer Ending, where Baloo delivers the ticket just a few seconds too late, is Played for Laughs.
- Or for that matter, the same radio station offering to purchase the one-of-a-kind stamp on the ticket's envelope for the cost of the prize... which they discover after Baloo throws it away - and just as the garbage truck pulls away after collecting it.
- The Nicknamer: Baloo.
- Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: The cartoon combines The Jungle Book characters, dogfighting, 1930s Film Noir, Indiana Jones-styled adventures, the Cold War, and Screwball Comedy in one cartoon. Can be equal parts comic, dramatic, action-filled or suspenseful, often just in one episode.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: In "A Star Is Torn", several celebrities from The Thirties (or at least their furry equivalents) make cameos.
- Noodle Implements: In the pilot Don Karnage plans to... somehow... use turnips and sandpaper to get Kit to talk. Naturally he is rescued before we can find out the details.
- Not So Above It All: Rebecca in a rather extensive manner (though she is toned down slightly in later episodes).
- Not-So-Harmless Villain: Similarly, the Thembrian military usually consisted largely of bumblers whose favored ammunition is stacks of bologna; however, when set on actually offing someone, they take it to torturous extremes.
- Off Model: To an extent, due to aforementioned Animation Bump. Don Karnage for example, looked rather vicious and sinister in design in some cases, while in others he was almost as cuddly and docile looking as Baloo.
- Offscreen Villainy: During the pilot there are more than a few mentions of Don Karnage being famous for never letting anyone go, never taking anyone prisoner, and never leaving any evidence, the time he did let some pilots alive being due to him wanting to send a message. Of course, he never kills anyone over the course of the show (unless you count collateral damage from the Lightning Gun), mostly either due to his men's incompetence (or his own, occasionally), or Baloo and the gang being just that good.
- Oh Wait, This Is My Grocery List
- On One Condition: "The Balooest of the Bluebloods".
- The One Who Wears Shoes: Don Karnage and Gibber of the Air Pirates, as well as some guest star characters such as Katie Dodd ("For Whom the Bell Klangs") and Clementine Clevenger ("Citizen Khan").
- Only in It for the Money: Baloo insists to Becky he's only working at Higher For Hire until he's earned enough to buy back the Sea Duck. While he holds up to that deal a couple of times he earns big, it's often implied to be a bit more complex than that.
- Or My Name's Not: "...Ace London!" "Ya got that right."
- Out of Focus/Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Many of the later episodes stray from the goings on of Higher For Hire and focus more on Baloo adventuring outside Cape Suzette. While Rebecca, Molly and Kit feature less as a result, Wildcat and Louie gain more prominent roles in later episodes.
- Over Drive: Used in the first episode. Combines Nitro Boost with Explosive Overclocking if left on too long.
- Overly Polite Pals: Baloo and Kit have one of these moments in one episode.
- Panda-ing to the Audience: Subverted; while the pandas of Panda-La are cute-looking and seem too intellectual and isolated, they're actually an Affably Evil Eastern Horde with heat-seeking rockets.
- Papa Bear: Baloo, of the surrogate kind to Kit (and to a lesser extent Molly). Kit even calls him Papa Bear, as Mowgli did in The Jungle Book.
- Parental Substitute: Baloo and to a much lesser extent Rebecca, to Kit. Baloo also has moments with Molly.
- Petting Zoo People: The entire cast.
- Ping Pong Naïveté: Kit's view of Baloo varies from episode to episode, in some episodes he is completely oblivious to Baloo's faults and idolizes him blindly; in others he is the Only Sane Man and The Smart Guy of the team; in others still he's easily manipulated by con men or "too good to be true" deals that even Baloo sees right through.
- Pity the Kidnapper: "The Ransom of Red Chimp".
- Poke the Poodle: Both Don Karnage and the Thembrian Army have shown occasional tactics such as this. Subverted slightly as acts such as scratching your nails on a chalkboard and forcing you through a cheesy chat show are actually considered all manner of hell for their hostages.
- Polly Wants a Microphone: Ignatz in "Polly Wants a Treasure".
- Poor Communication Kills: The entire episode "Your Baloo's In The Mail" proves this.
- Positive Discrimination: Subverted. Despite being a female character of the strong independent business woman variety, Rebecca makes her fair share of mistakes, with her and Baloo getting roughly equal opportunities to play the Straight Man for each other.
- Pun-Based Title: In the DuckTales tradition, Tale Spin is a pun on "Tailspin".
- Punishment Box: Baloo stays at a Thembrian penal colony which he has mistaken for a fitness camp. He is frequently sent to what he calls a "solar powered sauna."
- Punny Name: All over the place—area names like Cape Suzette (Crêpe Suzette), episode titles like "The Idol Rich" (The Idle Rich) and "The Sound and the Furry", and some major and minor characters' names.
- Putting on the Reich: The nation of Thembria resembles the Soviet Union.
- Ramming Always Works: How the Lightning Gun from "Plunder and Lightning" was destroyed.
- Averted a few minutes earlier when the Sky Pirates attempt to ram the door in order to prevent Kit from sending the message to Baloo about his efforts to sabotage the Lightning Gun.
- Really 700 Years Old: Captain William Stansbury from "Her Chance To Dream".
- The Renaissance Age of Animation
- Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Klang, the Knight of Cerebus villain in the two-part episode "For Whom the Bell Klangs." Also Trader Moe.
- Requisite Royal Regalia
- Reset Button: Baloo has managed to save up enough money to buy back his plane more a few times, but even when events didn't conspire to put him back to work for Becky, the fact of the matter is that he is a lousy businessman and usuallt ends up asking for his job back anyway. On the other hand, after an early episode where Rebecca has trouble learning how to pilot a plane(from a book), a later story shows that she's learned a lot from Baloo and is now a capable pilot on her own. Of course, she still gladly hands the controls to the Ace Pilot when there's any crazy stunts to be pulled.
- The Rival: Plane Jane and Ace London to Baloo.
- Rocket Ride: In "Mach One for the Gipper", Baloo flies a newly invented jet engine. No, not a plane with a jet engine—literally just the engine.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Princess Lotta Lamour helps Baloo and Louie save her kingdom from Chancellor Trample.
- Rule of Cool: A general staple of the show, but most evident with Kit's airfoil. To be clear, it assumes a 12 year-old boy can hang on to a rope behind an airplane (travelling at a minimum of 150 mph), while coordinating a piece of metal below his feet.
- Ruritania: Thembria.
- Sanity Ball: Thrown around frequently, usually between Baloo, Rebecca or Kit for a Straight Man and Wise Guy scenario.
- Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: Baloo is often shown to be rather overambitious with money, and is dead set on buying back the Sea Duck from Rebecca, however when he realises some immoral and harmful undertone in a scheme or investment, he turns it down immediately.
- A frequent scruple for Shere Khan, his moral code preventing him from doing anything truly irredeemable.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: This is the basis behind several of his more petty schemes however.
- The Shangri-La: Subverted in the TV episode "Last Horizons", used straight in the Disney Adventures comic "The Gates of Shambala".
- She Cleans Up Nicely: Rebecca looks disturbingly good in a fancy dress.
- Also Katie Dodd when she is having dinner at the restaurant in "For Whom The Bell Klangs".
- "Polly Wants A Treasure": Polly is called a "rare Norwegian Blue".
- Also, in one episode a character warns that "no one dares to face The Wrath of Khan!"
- And who could forget the "This Was Your Life" execution ceremony in "The Time Bandit", complete with cheesy host and aquaintances from the guest's past.
- Very frequently in the episode titles. "Citizen Khan", "The Old Man and the Sea Duck", "Last Horizons", the list goes on for miles.
- The episode "The Road To Macadamia" is a straight up homage to the "Road" movies starring Bob Hope and Bing Crosby but with Baloo and Louie.
- Baloo's gypsy costume in the episode "A Spy In The Ointment" is pretty much a complete copy of Little John's costume from an early scene in the Disney version of Robin Hood. This is actually Fridge Brilliance when you consider that Phil Harris was both the original voice actor for Baloo and the voice actor for Little John in the movie where the costume originated from.
- Naturally the show features a good few Shout Outs to The Jungle Book. Baloo's aforementioned tendency to disguise himself in drag is also likely a reference to a similar scene in the movie. "My Fair Baloo" also has Rebecca binded by a large (somewhat familiar looking) constrictor snake.
- Also in "Gruel And Unusual Punishment", when Baloo lands on Bedevilled Island, he floats on his back in a stream eating food off of his stomach, much like he did in The Jungle Book.
- In "For Whom The Bell Klangs, Part 1", the restaurant Baloo and Louie visit bears a strong resemblance to Rick's Café Américain.
- And a blink and you'll miss it moment in "It Came from Beneath the Sea Duck": Becky is unloading her groceries, including a bucket of Pep (from the DuckTales episode "The Big Flub"). (Yes, "Pep" can also also be peppermint, but seeing that they're both Disney cartoons...)
- Don Karnage's "Let us not be the hasty puddings!!"
- An episode about a prototype helicopter is called "Baloo Thunder".
- Show Within a Show: Danger Woman, Molly's favorite radio series.
- The Sky Is an Ocean
- Sky Pirates: Don Karnage and his crew.
- Sky Surfing: Hence "Cloudkicker".
- The Slacker: As competent a pilot as he is, Baloo is not a devoted worker.
- Slap-Slap-Kiss: Baloo and Rebecca have this going on big time in several episodes.
- Slapstick Knows No Gender: Rebecca gets it as bad as Baloo at times.
- Small Name, Big Ego: Rebecca a lot of times. Baloo also frequently fell victim to Acquired Situational Narcissism.
- Something We Forgot: A Running Gag throughout the episode, "The Balooest of the Blue Bloods" is Wildcat looking for the bathroom in Baloo's inherited mansion. At the end of the episode, the mansion gets repossessed, and when Baloo and Rebecca have lunch, they realize they left Wildcat behind at the mansion (who is still looking for the bathroom at that point).
- Specs of Awesome: Myra wears them.
- Spiritual Successor: The series is basically a Furry version of the old TV series Tales of the Gold Monkey...
- Sticky Situation: "Stuck on You", in which Baloo and Don Karnage are glued together. The trope name even appears in the dialogue.
- The Stoic: Shere Khan, to extremes. Even when abducted by a psychopathic robot, his reaction is to merely fold his arms and groan "unamused".
- Surrounded by Idiots: Don Karnage is pretty much the only competent Air Pirate (or the nearest to one). This tends to put a damper on his plans.
- Taxman Takes The Winnings: The ending of "The Balooest of the Blue Bloods". Baloo stands to inherit a ton of money from a distant relative, but he has to survive a night in a haunted, cursed house. After he survives the night, all the money is lost due to the "real family curse" - decades of unpaid land taxes.
- Similarly, when he manages to claim a huge reward for a recovered artifact, the bulk of it is taken up by the bar tab he ran up at Louie's. Though considering that Louie regularly lets him run up a tab that size, it's still a net gain.
- That Makes Me Feel Angry: His specific way of announcing this is one of Don Carnage's catch phrases.
- Theme Tune Cameo: The show's BGM regularly made use of the instrumental version of the opening theme, along with several variants.
- "For a Fuel Dollars More" used it during the inaugural fuel run made by the Sea Duck.
- "I Only Have Ice for You" used a tropical-sounding variant when Rebecca admits she needs Baloo's help.
- The Thirties
- Those Two Bad Guys: Mad Dog and Dump Truck. Also Trader Moe's lackeys.
- Those Wacky Nazis: In one Disney Adventures comic story, "The Dogs of War", Baloo and Kit were briefly held hostage by a zeppelin full of smug, militaristic, German-accented dogs who kept mixing up their "v's" and their "w's".
- Tickle Torture: Don Karnage does it to Kit in "Polly Wants a Treasure".
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Baloo is often shown to act more selfish and egotistical than his original The Jungle Book interpretation (albeit Depending on the Writer and balanced by his role in some other episodes).
- Total Eclipse of the Plot: In "The Time Bandit".
- Tribal Carry: Rebecca when captured by pygmies in "The Bigger They Are, the Louder They Oink".
- TV Genius: Rebecca, in contrast to Book Dumb but streetwise Baloo, has an MBA and is refined in terms of social inequity, but is a borderline Ditz in terms of the outside world.
- Unfortunate Names: Buffy and Muffy from a Touch of Glass.
- The Unintelligible: Gibber didn't speak out loud, he whispered into people's ears. All the viewer heard was a bit of, well, gibberish. Since his name is Gibber... yeah.
- He said one intelligible word in the entire show, calling Karnage "crazy" in "Stuck On You". Needless to say, it was a poor choice.
- Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: Though the characters are generally loveable and redeemable, they have their moments of this, Baloo and occasionally Rebecca are perhaps the biggest players.
- UST: A number of fans saw this in Baloo and Becky's interaction, despite having nothing outright romantic in the series.
- Well, some episodes did show some obvious Ship Tease (Baloo's Post-Kiss Catatonia in "Your Baloo's In The Mail" may be a plausible canon example).
- Word of God claims they intended to show infatuation between the two, though the creators admit it may have ultimately came out "lop-sided" in Rebecca's favor, who is occasionally shown to take bigger extremes in her devotion to Baloo.
- Villain Song: "Sky Pirates," performed by Don Karnage and his crew during the pilot.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Baloo and Louie's friendship is often shown to be this, particularly in "buddy" episodes like "For Whom the Bell Klangs" and "The Road to Macadamia". They even have a fairly catchy tune dedicated to their status as such in "Friends for Life," but it never made it into the show, just the soundtrack.
Baloo: I got moves, son—
Louie: You learned from me, I got a song to sing—
Baloo: If you can find the key
Both: Whatever he's got, I've got more of
But there's one thing we both are sure of, we're
Friends for life [etc.]
- Wave Motion Gun: The Lightning Gun from "Plunder and Lightning".
- Also the weapon from Tinabula in the episode "For Whom The Bell Klangs".
- Weaksauce Weakness: Louie is usually an active and healthy guy, until he's exposed to his one weakness, anchovies in "Pizza Pie in the Sky" and instantly becomes sick and delusional.
- Well, Excuse Me, Princess!: Arguably happens in multiple scenarios between Baloo and Rebecca. Kit and Molly actually have a brief similar moment in "Mommy For A Day".
- Who Would Be Stupid Enough:
Don Karnage: Fools! Surely they would not be so stupid as to attack the Iron Vulture! (Ship rocks with impact) ...They are more stupid than I thought!
- Also in "Polly Wants a Treasure"
We gotta get Kit outta there before one of those idiots [the pirates] sets off Captain Juan Toomanie's big
trap! Baloo: (leaning backwards)
Relax, that would take somebody really
dumb. (the stalagmite he's leaning against falls back with a click) Ignatz: (Long-suffering sigh)
Right again, Baloo.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: Baloo as "Tan-Margaret" in "Feminine Air".
- Who's Laughing Now?: Dougie Benson, the diminutive Corrupt Corporate Executive in "Louie's Last Stand".
- Wicked Cultured: Shere Khan was the page picture for a reason.
- Wise Beyond Their Years: Kit often comes off as the most sensible member of Higher For Hire. That said there are several points his childishness does come into play.
- With Friends Like These...: Used a fair few times, usually with Baloo or Rebecca.
- Women Are Wiser: Becky, to an extent - especially since a lot of her chemistry with Baloo came from sharing the same character flaws.
- World of Funny Animals
- World War I: Part of the Squadron of Seven's backstory in "Bygones".
- Wronski Feint/Aerial Canyon Chase: Baloo's main defense against attackers in the air since his cargo plane is unarmed.
- Xanatos Gambit: Shere Khan always finds some measure of victory even in defeat - even in plots that don't involve him.
- Yank the Dog's Chain: Many of Baloo's Get Rich Quick Schemes are successful, but the prize is always taken away by some unfortunate stroke of luck. "Your Baloo's In The Mail" is a particularly cruel example.
- Yellow Peril: In the banned episode "Last Horizons", Baloo ventures to discover a lost Shambhala-like civilization known as Panda-La, and, upon finding it, is treated as a welcome guest, but the inhabitants secretly plan to invade Cape Suzette upon hearing about it from Baloo, clearly jibing at Pearl Harbor.
- You Didn't Ask: Wildcat uses this exact phrase during "In Search of Ancient Blunders".
- You Go Girl: "Feminine Air" may count as a mercifully non-Anvilicious example, with Baloo pulling his own male to-female-variation of a Sweet Polly Oliver.
- You Owe Me: "Save the Tiger" subverts this and plays it straight.
- You're Not My Father: Played very seriously in "Stormy Weather".
- Zany Scheme: Baloo was a big fan of the get-rich-quick scheme.
- Rebecca was no slouch herself. Remember "The Bigger They Are, The Louder They Oink", the Truffle-hunt episode?
- Zero-Approval Gambit: In the episode "Plunder And Lightning", Kit pretends to betray Baloo, Rebecca, and Molly to gain Don Karnage's trust and allow them to escape the air pirates.