[[quoteright:331:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/321_Penguins_9161.jpg]]

--> ''"Let's sing a little song''
--> ''With eight little words''
--> '''Bout a rocket ship''
--> ''And flightless birds''
--> ''Zidgel! Midgel! Fidgel! Kevin!''
--> ''Three! Two! One! Penguins!"''
--> --''3-2-1 Penguins!'' ThemeSong

Produced by Big Idea Productions (the guys who made ''WesternAnimation/VeggieTales''), ''3-2-1 Penguins!'' stars twin siblings Michelle Frances Conrad (who is older by five minutes) and Jason T. Conrad. Both have been shipped off to stay with their very British "[[InsistentTerminology grandmum]]" for the summer, while their parents go...[[CanonFodder someplace else]].

In the PilotEpisode, Jason mopes around because he would much rather be at Space Camp, and as evening falls on their first day at the cottage, he is bored out of his skull after their television blows a fuse. Michelle, on the other hand, has found a set of porcelain penguins and is rather enjoying herself when Jason happens upon the [[MissingFloor hidden attic]]. Upon investigation, the twins find a bunch of old toys and games, as well as a large telescope. When Michelle hogs the telescope, Jason stuffs her penguins into a toy spaceship and accidentally drops them both. Rather than breaking, the ship bounces around before springing to life. The now living and sapient penguins "galeezel" Jason into the toy ship and whisk off into space to deal with a distress call.

In Episode 2, it's Michelle's turn to take a ride with the Penguins, and from then on, one or both of the twins would join the Penguins as they traveled through the stars, helping various [[AmusingAlien Amusing]] (and less-than-amusing) [[AmusingAlien Aliens]] with whatever the universe decided to throw at them. [[SarcasmMode Astonishingly]], the solution to each location's problem usually hinges on [[AnAesop something Grandmum tried to teach the kids earlier]].

Since the show is targeted at a slightly older demographic than that of ''WesternAnimation/VeggieTales'', there's a distinct lack of musical numbers in each episode (but not Big Idea's trademark humor). However, at the end of most episodes, the Penguins attend Amateur Night at the Comet Lounge where they sing a song related to the episode's moral lesson.

The series was initially a set of six direct-to-video episodes, released between 2000 and 2003, but after a four-year hiatus, the show was picked up by Creator/{{NBC}}'s {{Qubo}} block and has since gained two additional seasons.

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!!''3-2-1 Penguins!'' provides examples of:

* AccessoryWearingCartoonAnimal:
** The Lizard King wears nothing more than a hat, gloves, and a belt.
** The only articles of clothing the Bandicoot King wears are a crown and a cape.
* AdaptationExpansion: ''Oh, Mercy'' is adapted loosely from Jesus' parable of the unforgiving servant. One of things added to it is what happened after the first servant gets imprisoned a second time.
* AerithAndBob: The Penguins' names are Zidgel, Midgel, Fidgel... and Kevin.
* AffectionateParody: This is some sort of subtle parody of ''Franchise/StarTrek'' to some degree.
* AlienSky: The planets Wait-Your-Turn, Tell-a-Lie, Rigel 13, and Cross-Your-Heart have this. [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in ''Lazy Daze''
-->'''Midgel:''' Blue grass, green skies, and no ants.
-->'''Michelle:''' Don't you mean green grass and blue skies?
* AliensSpeakingEnglish: Played straight with most of the aliens, averted with the light-bulb aliens in "Runaway Pride at Lightstation Kilowatt" who speak in R2-D2-ish gibberish and the ear-like lobes in ''Compassion Crashin'' who communicate with "Budda, budda, budda."
* AllAnimalsAreDomesticated: In ''The Doom Funnel Rescue'', Jason finds a mouse and names him Preston. Preston [[AllAnimalsAreDogs still acts like a mouse]], but doesn't seem to mind being handled at all. Later on, Michelle even dresses him up in a bridal gown.
* AllCGICartoon: Everything is CGI.
* AllPlanetsAreEarthlike: Averted, as all of the planets differ greatly from Earth.
* AlternativeCalendar: Implied in "Practical Hoax" when Fidgel said that Bert Bertman was part of the class of 2222. Obviously, this show takes place in the early 21st century.
* AnthropomorphicPersonification: The green-eyed monster from the episode of the same name represents envy.
* ArsonMurderAndJaywalking: In the Planet Tell-a-Lie music video, "The Legend of Galaxy Gus", there is a wanted poster with this on it: "Wanted, Honcho Villa, fer bank robbery, cattle rustlin', and not makin' his bed."
* ArtificialGravity: Even though it's never explicitly stated whether the Rockhopper has it, the characters not floating around in it is evidence enough of its existence.
* AsteroidMiners: The Lobes from ''Compassion Crashin''' work in the baking soda mines of an asteroid belt.
* AsteroidThicket: The Rockhopper crew encounters one of these in ''Compassion Crashin'''.
* AsTheGoodBookSays: Grandmum and occasionally Sol quotes from the Good Book.
* BaddieFlattery: Cavitus compliments Jason in ''Hogs and Kisses'' [[spoiler: in order to gain access to all of the money in the Pig-O Bank Cruiser.]]
* BaldOfEvil: The Lizard King.
* BarefootCartoonAnimals: The Penguins and some other characters.
* BerserkButton: Do not say the word "cheat" within earshot of the Lizard King. His frills will pop up and he'll yell at you to shut up.
* BigCreepyCrawlies: The giant ants in ''Lazy Daze''.
* BigNo: In ''Comedy of Errors'', Michelle does this when [[spoiler: Jason sings the song she sings when she's scared at the Comet Lounge.]]
** In ''Wise Guys'', Jason does this twice, and both times coupled with a SkywardScream: the first when he discovers that the batteries are not included with the time machine, and another when he is told [[spoiler: that he and his sister are stuck in the future forever]].
** In ''Oh, Mercy!'', Zidgel, Jason and the Gator King yell this in slo-mo when the emerald falls out of its case and smashes into many pieces.
* BigOlEyebrows: Zidgel, Midgel, and Fidgel have these.
* BigShutUp: Michelle yells "Hey!" at a Miso Guapo convention to get the audience to shut up in ''Invasion of the Body Swappers''.
* BilingualBonus: In ''Wiki Tiki'', the tiki king says, "Mahalo nui" to Zidgel. ''Mahalo nui'' is Hawaiian for "thank you very much."
* BinocularShot: Occurs in ''The Doom Funnel Rescue'' when Fidgel is looking for a gas station in space.
* BlackBeadEyes: The human characters as well as a few aliens have these.
* BreadEggsBreadedEggs: In ''Trouble on Planet Wait-Your-Turn'', how the Penguins describe how hot it is on the planet.
-->'''Fidgel:''' Like a sauna.
-->'''Midgel:''' Like a barbecue.
-->'''Zidgel:''' Like someone's barbecuing in a sauna.
** In ''Moon Menace on Planet Tell-a-Lie'', how Fidgel and Midgel describe the chain reaction that could be caused by Tell-a-Lie's moon slipping out of its orbit.
-->'''Fidgel:''' A flood.
-->'''Midgel:''' A fire.
-->'''Fidgel:''' A flood on fire.
* BreakingTheFourthWall: In ''The Cheating Scales of Bullamanka'', after Fidgel says "ombudsmen", the episode pauses with a voiceover defining the word. Since Kevin is not affected by the paused screen, he uses a marker to scribble out "men" and replace it with "penguins".
** In the same episode, the Penguins mention that it was the Lizard King who cheated in the show.
** In ''Invasion of the Body Swappers'', part of Zidgel's song lyrics are, "I make them swoon, even for a cartoon!"
** In ''Git Along Little Doggies'', while Fidgel was correcting Jason and Michelle's behavior, Kevin passes by in the background twice and waves at the viewers his second time around.
** In ''Oh, Mercy'', the Gator King asks the audience if he knows his Bible.
* BrickJoke: President No-I'm-the-President's cameo in ''The Cheating Scales of Bullamanka'' and ''The Amazing Carnival of Complaining''.
* TheBridge: No spaceship is complete without this, not even the Rockhopper.
* BucketBoobyTrap: Jason successfully uses this to prank Michelle in ''Practical Hoax'', much to Michelle's chagrin.
* ButtBiter: In ''The Green-Eyed Monster'', the titular monster delivers a bite to Midgel's rear end.
* CallBack: ''The Cheating Scales of Bullamanka'' features many call backs to ''Trouble on Planet Wait your Turn''. One of them is Midgel trying out the new landing gear after hearing Jason's advice and echoing his statement, "No job's too hard when you use your head."
** This one in particular gets [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]]:
--> '''Michelle:''' Jason was right! You guys ''are'' real!\\
'''Midgel:''' Either that or you're daydreaming.\\
'''Kevin:''' Whoa! Deja vu!\\
''(guitar riff from Series/TheTwilightZone plays)''
** In ''The Amazing Carnival of Complaining'', the call backs to the first episode are Jason wanting to go to Space Camp and the Turbo 3000 being busted.
* CaptainObvious: Future Zidgel pretty much points out why the wrecked Rockhopper is unable to fly.
* CaptainsLog: In the direct-to-video episodes, Captain Zidgel does this at the end of the episode. In the T.V. version, he does so at the beginning of the episode.
* CatchPhrase: The Penguins all have one.
** Zidgel: "Doctor Fidgel, Galeezle him/her."
** Midgel: "BAN-ZAAAAAAAAAAI!"
** Fidgel: "Sensors indicate..."
** Kevin: "Helloooooo!"
* [[ChubbyMamaSkinnyPapa Chubby Grandma Skinny Grandpa]]: In photos from ''Trouble on Planet Wait-Your-Turn'', the twins' grandfather looks tiny in comparison to their grandmother.
* CommLinks: The comm links that the Rockhopper crew uses look like [[http://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/bigidea/images/2/28/CommLink.png/revision/latest?cb=20160414013958 this.]]
* ContinuityNod: In ''The Doom Funnel Rescue'', the crew gasps towards the horror music in a similar way in which they did when they found out what would happen to Planet Wait-Your-Turn.
** In ''Oh, Mercy'', Zidgel screams like a little girl just like how he did in ''Lazy Daze''.
** In ''Promises, Promises'', the comic book Grandmum reads at the beginning shows pictures from previous episodes, like ''Lazy Daze'', ''Give and Let Give'', ''Wiki Tiki'', ''Invasion of the Body Swappers'', and ''Git Along Little Doggies''.
* TheCorrupter: Uncle Blobb encourages anyone who is wearing Blobb Toppers to complain in order to turn them into seeds of discontent.
* CourtroomEpisode: ''12 Angry Hens''.
* CowboyEpisode: ''Git Along, Little Doggies'' is basically a SpaceWestern.
* CreepyLongFingers: The Lizard King reveals his to Michelle to show her that he has a good chance of winning the game of Squid-Tac-Toad.
* CuteIsEvil: [[spoiler:Bert the Hamster inside the Cavitus Suit.]]
* DayInTheLife: ''Comedy of Errors'' focuses on the Rockhopper crew going to see a new comedy act at the Comet Lounge.
* DescriptivelyNamedSpecies: The titular penguins look like...well, [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin penguins]].
* DistressCall: Sometimes, these appear in the form of papers from FAX machines. Other times, they appear in the typical audio distress signal.
* DistressedDude: In ''Do Unto Brothers'', Zidgel, Midgel, and Fidgel get captured by Cavitus.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: Meta example. In an early version of the Big Idea website (by early, we mean in 2000), Fidgel's bio states that his favorite color is orange. In ''Runaway Pride at Lightstation Kilowatt'', it's established that he's red-green colorblind, meaning that he isn't able to see the color orange.
* EveryEpisodeEnding: Most of the episodes ended with the Rockhopper flying off into the night after Jason and Michelle finished praying.
* EverythingsBetterWithPenguins: This T.V. show is about penguins, in space!
* EvilGloating: Baron von Cavitus has a habit of doing this often.
* ExcitedShowTitle
* ExpospeakGag: In ''Moon Menace on Planet Tell-a-Lie'', Fidgel puts "every time the darts speak, their moon drops" into words like "postulating the definitive correlation between the rate of their verbal utterances and their planet's approximate lunar distance".
* ExpositoryThemeTune: Downplayed, part of the theme song says " 'Bout a rocket ship and flightless birds", which gives the viewer a little idea of what the show is about.
* TheFaceLess: Admiral Strap only interacts via speakerphone with the Penguins.
* {{Facepalm}}: In ''More is More'', Zidgel does this when Fidgel keeps saying "Yes, captain."
* {{Fainting}}: Zidgel does this in ''The Green-Eyed Monster'' when he discovers just how big this grass-eating monster is.
* FantasticShipPrefix: The Penguins' ship, the Rockhopper, uses U.F.P.S (United Federation Penguin Starship).
* FasterThanLightTravel: The Rockhopper can travel to distant planets in only a few hours.
* [[FurryReminder Feathery Reminder]]: In the commentary for ''Trouble on Planet Wait-Your-Turn'', Midgel mentions that he was up for hours, preening himself all morning.
* TheFederation: Who the Penguins work for. The Federation League of Planets, to be exact.
* FiveManBand
** Zidgel is TheHero
** Midgel is TheLancer
** Fidgel is TheSmartGuy
** Kevin is TheBigGuy with traits of TheChick
** Jason and Michelle are [[TagalongKid Tagalong Kids]] with traits of TheHeart
* FountainOfYouth: In ''Wise Guys'', the time machine causes [[spoiler: Kevin to revert to a younger penguin and eventually an egg. He reverts back to his regular age in the end.]]
* FourFingeredHands: Most of the characters have either three or four fingers on each hand, including the human characters. Jason even [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] this in ''Trouble on Planet Wait-Your-Turn'' when he holds up all his fingers on one hand and a finger on his other hand to indicate "5".
* FourPhilosophyEnsemble:
** Zidgel: The Optimist.
** Midgel: The Cynic.
** Fidgel: The Realist.
** Kevin: The Apathetic.
* FourTemperamentEnsemble:
** Zidgel: Sanguine.
** Midgel: Choleric.
** Fidgel: Melancholic.
** Kevin: Phlegmatic.
* FreakyFridayFlip: In ''Invasion of the Body Swappers'', Zidgel and Kevin switch bodies.
* FreeRangeChildren: Averted, Jason and Michelle do have adult supervision when going on their space adventures, namely the Penguins.
* FreezeFrameBonus: When Fidgel galeezels Jason and Michelle in ''Comedy of Errors'', he can be seen briefly with his eyebrows and his glasses missing.
* FreudianExcuse: Cavitus is mean because of how he was treated at [[spoiler: The Academy]].
* FunnyBackgroundEvent: In ''Runaway Pride at Lightstation Kilowatt'', Captain Zidgel points a laser beam at his hair, causing it to catch on fire, which causes him to run around like crazy until Kevin uses a fire extinguisher to put it out.
* FunWithAcronyms: "B, I, N, G. Beneficial Imprinting Neuromatic Gizmo." "BING!"
* FutureMeScaresMe: In ''Wise Guys'', future Zidgel scares Zidgel due to him being fat, bald, and toothless.
* FutureSpandex: The Penguins' jumpsuits. Justified, in that the low-budget computer animation wouldn't be able to depict looser clothing.
* GetBackToTheFuture: Inverted in ''Wise Guys'', where Jason, Michelle, and the Penguins end up in the future and try to find a way to travel back to their own time.
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: In the commentary for ''The Amazing Carnival of Complaining'', when Uncle Blobb [[spoiler: escapes in an outhouse rocket]], Midgel says that you can tell a lot about a man by the car he drives. Considering what an outhouse is used for, and who Uncle Blobb is, one just needs to put two and two together in order to know what that comment meant. [[DontExplainTheJoke If you don't get it,]] [[spoiler: he's saying that Uncle Blobb is full of shit.]]
* GluttonousPig: Planet Gutt's inhabitants are a bunch of gluttonous one-eyed pigs.
* GreenEyedMonster: An episode is actually titled ''The Green-Eyed Monster'', and it involves a planet where a pack of sheep is jealous at another because of their pastures.
* GreenSkinnedSpaceBabe: A ''yellow-skinned'' space babe appears in ''Invasion of the Body Swappers''. Although she wasn't designed to be attractive.
* GrowlingGut: This happens to Kevin in ''More is More''.
* HalfIdenticalTwins: Jason and Michelle.
* HumanAliens: The garden gnomes from Planet Sharalike are the closest to these due to the show's low budget.
* HumanlikeAnimalAging: The aging process is zig-zagged with Zidgel's, Midgel's, and Fidgel's future selves from ''Wise Guys''. They have gray hair (In Future Zidgel's case, he's gone bald), but lack wrinkles. Instead, their feathers are grayer.
* HumanoidAliens: Thanks to the show's low budget animation, plenty of these appear in order to make up for the lack of HumanAliens and RubberForeheadAliens.
** The aliens appearing include:
*** The Penguins
*** [[LizardFolk Lizard Folks]] Lizard King and Wild Bill Quasar
*** Green one-eyed pigs with either blue or purple skin depending on their gender
*** Aliens wearing tiki masks
*** Pig-like aliens
*** Gator-like aliens
*** Sock monkeys with Scottish accents
* InCharacterCommentaries: ''Trouble on Planet Wait-Your-Turn'', ''The Cheating Scales of Bullamanka'', and ''The Amazing Carnival of Complaining'' have commentaries by Ron Smith, Zidgel, Midgel, Fidgel, and Kevin.
* InformedSpecies: The Bandicoot King looks less like a bandicoot and more like a cross between a dog and a kangaroo.
** Downplayed with Zidgel. He is said to be a rockhopper penguin, but he doesn't have the same hair color as Fidgel, another crested penguin.
* InsaneAdmiral: Averted with Admiral Strap, who is portrayed as a reasonable authority figure.
* IntelligentGerbil: The sheep from Planet Picket, the chickens from Planet Henpecked-A-Lot, and the cow captain from ''In the Big House''.
* IntergenerationalFriendship: Jason and Michelle, two seven-year-old kids, are friends with Zidgel, Midgel, Fidgel, and Kevin, who all look like they are in their thirties.
* InterspeciesFriendship: Jason and Michelle, two humans, are friends with Zidgel, Midgel, Fidgel, and Kevin, four penguins.
* ItRunsOnNonsensoleum: A ''lot'' of stuff.
** The Cutting-In-Line bug moved Planet Wait-Your-Turn in front of the other planets in its solar system.
** Lying causes the moon of Planet Tell-A-Lie to move closer.
* JesusTaboo: Averted, as the Bible is mentioned, albeit nicknamed "The Good Book".
* KnockKnockJoke: Zidgel tries to tell this to Kevin in ''Runaway Pride at Lightstation Kilowatt'', but Kevin just didn't get it.
* LandDownunder: Space Base Bullamanka, location of the Colossal Aussie Colosseum and where the Lizard and Bandicoot Kings live.
* LeanAndMean: The Lizard King.
* LizardFolk: The Lizard King and Wild Bill Quasar.
* [[MaybeMagicMaybeMundane Maybe High Tech, Maybe Mundane]]: It's never really specified if the kids' adventures are just daydreams or are actually happening. Both are hinted at.
* MisterBig: Baron von Cavitus is a hamster named Bert Bertman, but he wears a robot suit to disguise it.
* MobileShrubbery: In ''The Amazing Carnival of Complaining'', Jason moves around in a garbage can, Fidgel moves around in a cardboard box, and Kevin just hides behind a small piece of cotton candy.
* MobileSuitHuman: The recurring villain in the T.V. version Baron von Cavitus is actually a hamster in a mechanical suit named Bert Bertman.
* MohsScaleOfScienceFictionHardness: For starters, the Penguins' spaceship takes only a few hours to travel from planet to planet.
* MoralityBallad: The songs the Penguins sing at the Comet Lounge.
* MotorMouth: The Lizard King, although this trait disappears in his second appearance in which he speaks.
* NamedAfterTheirPlanet: Planet Tell-a-Lie has its Tell-a-Liars.
** Averted with the Penguins. Whatever the name of their planet is, it definitely doesn't have the word "penguin" in it.
* NegativeSpaceWedgie: The Doom Funnels of Space Colony Double-Wide.
* NeverSayDie: Averted twice.
** In ''Trouble on Planet Wait-Your-Turn'', when Jason accidentally pulls down the stairs to the attic and nearly hits Michelle, she tells him, "You almost killed me!"
** In ''The Doom Funnel Rescue'' Zidgel exclaims that they're all gonna die.
* NoBiochemicalBarriers: Kevin manages to gulp down a whole chocolate cupcake Michelle baked in ''Give and Let Give'' without suffering any ill effects.
* NoHuggingNoKissing: None of the main characters have any onscreen romantic relationships.
* NotHimself: Jason and the Penguins start acting like jerks to one another and Michelle when the Behavior Modifier is used on them in ''Compassion Crashin''.
* NoSeatBelts: Averted, the Rockhopper crew always buckles up for landing.
* NumberedHomeworld: Rigel 13.
* OddNameOut: Zidgel, Midgel, Fidgel, "keh-VEEN".
* OneGenderRace: The Lobes are all female.
* OnlyOneName: None of the Penguins' last names or even middle names, save for Zidgel's middle name, are ever revealed.
* PaperThinDisguise: In ''Practical Hoax'', Cavitus' and his minions' disguises consist only of Groucho Marx glasses.
* PainPoweredLeap: In ''Practical Hoax'', Midgel lets out a yelp of pain and leaps into the air the minute he fell for the old thumbtack on the chair prank.
* [[BatmanCanBreatheInSpace Penguins Can Breath In Space]]: Most of the characters, including the human kids.
* PicnicEpisode: ''Lazy Daze'', ants ruining it included. And the ants are giant.
* PieInTheFace: Fidgel receives one of these when he opens his laptop thanks to Jason and Midgel in ''Practical Hoax".
* PlanetOfHats: Subverted with the inhabitants of Planets Wait-Your-Turn, Tell-a-Lie, and Gut, as their hats were put on by outside forces. I.E. a cutting-in-line bug caused the Wait-Your-Turners' hat to be impatience, [[spoiler:the king pressing the button that caused Tell-a-Lie's moon to fall and him telling the Tell-a-Liars to constantly lie]] caused the Tell-a-Liars' hat to be dishonesty, and [[spoiler:cereal]] caused the one-eyed pigs' hat to be gluttony.
** Averted with the penguins themselves, one of the only things they have in common is that they're on one ship.
* PromptingNudge: In ''Lazy Daze'', Midgel nudges Zidgel in the chest roughly in order to get him to apologize for being lazy.
* RecycledSoundtrack: The music played in the action scenes from ''The Amazing Carnival of Complaining'' gets played again in the ''Give and Let Give'' action scenes.
** The music played during Jason's speech in ''The Amazing Carnival of Complaining'' gets played in ''More is More'' and ''Promises Promises''.
* ReverseTelescopicVision: This happens in ''The Doom Funnel Rescue'' to Captain Zidgel, when Fidgel tries warning the rest of the crew about a highly combustible gas tank at the gas station. Zidgel looks through the wrong end of Fidgel's binoculars and thinks that the tank is miles away, until Fidgel turns them around to which Zidgel then starts freaking out about it.
* RevisitingTheRoots: ''12 Angry Hens'', ''Kennel Club Blues'', ''Oh, Mercy'', and ''Promises, Promises'' had only one of the twins going on the mission like they did in the direct-to-video episodes instead of both of them.
* RunningGag: Increasingly bizarre forms of landing gear.
** "BANZAI!!!"
** "Either that or you're daydreaming."
** The Galeezil's exaggerated kick-back
** "*gasp!*" "*Gasp!*" "*''Gasp!''*"
* ScaryFlashlightFace: In ''Wise Guys'', Kevin does this when Jason starts the time machine and the lights go out.
* ScreamsLikeALittleGirl: In ''Lazy Daze'', Captain Zidgel screams a scream identical to Michelle's scream when [[BigCreepyCrawlies giant ants]] ruin a picnic.
** He does this again in ''Oh, Mercy!'' when Cavitus attempts to fire a marshmallow blast at him.
* SecurityCling: In ''Compassion Crashin'', Zidgel and Midgel grab onto each other when they accidentally break off the steering wheel.
* ShoutOut: [[ShoutOut/ThreeTwoOnePenguins See here.]]
* ShrinkRay: The galeezel, which is used to bring the kids aboard the toy-sized Rockhopper.
* SiblingSenioritySquabble: Jason notes that Michelle is only 5 minutes older and holds out his hand to indicate "5" only to [[LampshadeHanging realize that as a cartoon]] he only has [[FourFingeredHands four digits per hand.]]
* SingingInTheShower: In ''I Scream, You Scream'', Zidgel sings a little song in the ship's shower about how it's great being a man, er, penguin.
* SingleBiomePlanet: The biomes shown on the planets include all-desert, all-pasture, and all-purple ground.
* SpaceCadet: Jason and Michelle Conrad.
* SpaceCadetAcademy: The Federation Academy is implied to be this.
* SpaceWhaleAesop: In ''Trouble on Planet Wait-Your-Turn''.
-->'''Jason:''' Having to go first all the time only leads to trouble! Like getting burned up by the sun! [[LampshadeHanging Now, the consequences are not always so extreme,]] [[AnAesop but good things come to those who wait.]]
** If you ever complain, you'll literally turn into a seed of discontent and be used to depopulate a planet.
** Remember, kids, it's wrong to lie. Because if you do, the moon will flatten you and your planet.
** Don't ever feel envious, or else green eyed monsters will appear and start eating all of your shit.
* SpitTake: In ''Comedy of Errors'', Midgel spits out his drink when Jason reveals his embarrassing secret just to make people laugh.
* StarfishAliens: Some of the aliens encountered include sapient vacuum cleaners, pumpkin-headed children, light bulbs with arms and legs who communicate with clicking and beeping sounds, darts who constantly lie, spring necked lawn flamingos, and ear lobes with arms and legs whose vocabulary consists of one word.
* StarfishLanguage: The light bulb aliens from ''Runaway Pride at Lightstation Kilowatt'' communicate through beeping and clicking sounds. Kevin was able to understand and translate their language.
** The Lobes' (basically walking and talking human ears) language from ''Compassion Crashin'' consists entirely of the word "Budda". For some reason, it's not Kevin but Fidgel who understands and translates their language.
* StreamingStars: Averted most of the time. Played straight in ''The Doom Funnel Rescue'' when B.I.N.G. presses a button that cause the Rockhopper to travel at a speed of [[Franchise/StarTrek Warp 10]].
* SwivelChairAntics: Zidgel tends to spin around in his captain's swivel-chair. He even tries to spin around in it as many times as he can in one minute in ''Between an Asteroid and a Hard Place''.
* ThemeNaming: The Penguins, except for Kevin.
* ThemeTwinNaming: Averted with Jason and Michelle, as their names don't have a lot in common with one another.
* ThemeTuneCameo: In ''Practical Hoax'', Zidgel hums the theme song when doing his hair.
* ThemeTuneRollCall: Half the theme song lists the names of the penguins.
* ThumbtackOnTheChair: In ''Practical Hoax'', Baron von Cavitus' first minion places a Tell-a-Liar (a dart-like alien) on Midgel's chair.
* TimeMachine: In ''Wise Guys'', Jason finds a time machine in pieces in the storage bay of the Rockhopper. This particular time machine was owned by Fidgel when he was little.
* TimeTravelEpisode: ''Wise Guys''.
* TractorBeam: Baron von Cavitus uses this.
* TrueBeautyIsOnTheInside: The aesop of ''Invasion of the Body Swappers''. Michelle is feeling bummed out because she doesn't think she looks pretty. Grandmum tells her that it's what's on the inside that matters the most.
* TokenHuman: Jason, Michelle, and Grandmum are the only humans seen in the entire series.
* TopHeavyGuy: Zidgel's and Midgel's upper bodies are longer than their legs. Justified in that they are penguins.
* [[ToothyBird Toothy Penguin]]: All the penguins are shown to have teeth.
* UnnamedParent: Jason and Michelle's parents are never referred to by their first names.
* VagueAge: It's never explicitly stated or even implied how old the Penguins are. Since they're penguins, their ages can't be determined by their appearances alone. If their ages are determined by their voices and how long it's been since Bert Bertman graduated from the Federation Academy, their ages would be from late twenties to early thirties.
* VictoriasSecretCompartment: A male version is implied in ''Invasion of the Body Swappers'' when Kevin-In-Zidgel's-Body talks about the time he lost his wallet between his pectorals.
* VisualPun: Midgel holds a picture of ham when Zidgel sings his second solo in "Fair and Square". Ergo, he's saying that Zidgel is a LargeHam.
** In ''12 Angry Hens'', Midgel stops the ship due a fork in the road. Technically speaking, it's a fork floating in outer space, but it still applies.
* VoicesAreMental: In ''Invasion of the Body Swappers'', Zidgel's and Kevin's voices don't switch when they switch bodies.
* VulcanHasNoMoon: Some of the planets the Rockhopper crew visits have visible planets in their skies.
* WeirdMoon: Tell-a-Lie's moon is controlled by the planet itself instead of its own. When it is on its own, it'll crashed down if anyone lies.
* WidelySpacedJailBars: In ''Give and Let Give'', the cage Jason and Michelle are in has bars far apart for them to just escape if they tried.
** Zig-zagged in ''Do Unto Brothers''. The bars are narrow enough to prevent the penguins from escaping, but not the kids. As Michelle puts it.
-->'''Michelle:''' This cell was built to hold penguins, not kids.
* WhoopeeCushion: Jason and Midgel use one of these to prank Michelle in ''Practical Hoax''.

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