Western Animation: 2 Stupid Dogs

"Well, isn't that cute. But it's WRONG!"

This Animated Series, originally aired on TBS and broadcast syndication between 1993 and 1995, was Hanna-Barbera's answer to Ren and Stimpy. As expected, it revolves around a mismatched pair of stupid dogs, neither of whom is named on or off the program, and their surreally wacky misadventures. The shorts had several recurring characters, including a version of Red Riding Hood, and most importantly their most frequent antagonist, "Mr. H" (or "Hollywood" in the credits).

The backup feature of the show was a Revival of Secret Squirrel called Super Secret Secret Squirrel. This version consistently featured Funny Animals beyond Secret and Morocco Mole. It also introduced "Penny", secretary to Da Chief (and an obvious counterpart to Miss Moneypenny.)

Compare and contrast SWAT Kats, which ran alongside the series on TBS, but was pretty much different in every way (like being action-adventure instead of comedy); ultimately they were both ended to focus on the What-A-Cartoon! project (though for a while, SWAT Kats fans believed Ted Turner was the cause, thanks to a misquoted interview). Also notable, was that Craig McCracken and Genndy Tartakovsky started their careers working on this series before given the chance to make their own shows, The Powerpuff Girls and Dexter's Laboratory.

2 Stupid Dogs provides examples of:

  • Absentee Actor: The two dogs were absent in "Substitute Teacher" until the very end, and even then only the Little Dog has just one line.
  • Adam and Eve Plot: This happened at the end of the episode that spoofed Noah's Ark. After eating all of the food on the Ark, chewing off the horns of the unicorns, and other disasters, Hollywood/Noah finally gets sick of the dogs and tries to throw them overboard. Suddenly the storms passes and an overjoyed Noah shouts "Drop anchor, brethren!" Big Dog then throws the anchor in the air, sinking the ship. The Dogs end up swimming to a nearby island. Thousands of years later all of civilization looks like the two stupid dogs. It's probably best not to think about which dog was the "Adam" and which was the "Eve".
  • All Just a Dream: Played in an interesting way in one episode. They thought they were in a dream, and tried to wake up from it no matter what. It led to a lot of pain at one point.
  • Art Shift: "Hobo Hounds" is done in the style of a black-and-white silent era cartoon.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: When each dog wished to be the other, it resulted in a "Freaky Friday" Flip.
  • Big Eater: Big Dog.
  • Big Eyes Little Eyes: Big Dog has beady little eyes under his Blinding Bangs.
  • The Blind Leading the Blind: In one episode the dogs are bought as ring dogs, but they eventually lead the blind Hollywood into a construction site.
  • Blinding Bangs: The big dog.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: Hollywood.
  • Boot Camp Episode: They were sent to "cartoon boot camp" and given the names "Hammy & Loafy".
  • Catch Phrase: Hollywood's "Well, isn't that cute... BUT IT'S WRONG!!" Subverted exactly once in the series with the episode "Love" — Hollywood even broke the Fourth Wall to deliver a Lampshade Hanging.
  • Cute but Cacophonic: Red.
  • Digging to China
  • The Ditz: Both of them, though the big dog can be smart when he needs to.
  • Dogs Are Dumb: Natch.
  • Dumb Muscle: Big Dog.
  • The Eeyore: Big Dog
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin
  • Fat and Skinny: The two dogs.
  • Fat Bastard: Hollywood and the mail woman.
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: The Dogs don't catch on until near the end of the episode, just before they end up switching back.
  • Funny Animal
  • Game Show Appearance: In one episode, the dogs appear on "Let's Make a Right Price", an Expy of The Price Is Right with "Bill Baker" as host.
  • Genre Savvy: Even stupid dogs can have a bout of Genre Savviness. The third time they meet Red the little dog tries to get away from her calling her an "evil little girl" after the last two times they met ended badly for them. Of course they are once again tempted to follow Red by the dog food she is carrying.
    • Incidentally, this was also the episode that actually ends well and they all lived happily ever after.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Has its own page.
  • Groin Attack: Big Dog and Hollywood are victims to this trope.
  • Grossout Show:
    • Occasionally - for example, a kitten getting chewed up (no red gore, mind you) and spat out, and a quarter forcefully inserted into the bigger dog's cranium.
    • The episode "Spit Soup" was pretty much Exactly What It Says on the Tin. It was aired about once every leap year.
  • Hanna-Barbera
  • Hollywood Chameleon: One of the villains in Super Secret Secret Squirrel, a Gentleman Thief who steals priceless paintings so he can blend into them. Secret traps him in a room full of modern art, which he abhors.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Super Secret Secret Squirrel named almost all its episodes after that week's Big Bad (e.g. "Queen Bea," "Greg," "Doctor O").
  • Idiot Hero: Both dogs are this trope.
  • Inexplicably Identical Individuals: Hollywood.
  • It Is Pronounced Tro PAY: Chubby's name is pronounced "K-hubby".
  • Keet: Little Dog
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: The episode "Family Values" featuring a family that is almost, but not quite, The Brady Bunch.
  • Leave the Camera Running: The dogs standing in front of a giant door in "Cookies, Ookies, Blookies".
  • Little Guy, Big Buddy
  • Most Definitely Not a Villain: Little Dog's plan to distract a cat was using a cat puppet. "Hey, cat! Hey! Look at me! I'm a cat, not a puppet! And we can be friends, you can trust me, because I'm a cat, not a puppet... and definitely not a dog."
  • Naked People Are Funny: In the episode "Stunt Dogs", when Hollywood accidentally gets his loin cloth torn off.
    Hollywood: now wasn't that cute... BUT IT'S— *revels to have a pineapple covering his crotch*
    Little Dog: Food!
  • No Indoor Voice:
    • Hollywood.
    • And quite frequently, Red.
  • No Name Given: The eponymous dogs. They are called Big Dog and Little Dog. Though in "Cartoon Canines", they are called Loafy and Hammy, respectively. But in "Love", a female hamster calls Big Dog Jonathan. In "At the Post Office", in order to play it safe (he didn't know his own age), Little Dog decided to fill a draft form and didn't know his own name. Based on Big Dog's last answer to the question about his name, Little Dog registered his name as Ida Know.
    • In addition to "Love," in "Spit Soup," both Little Dog and a dentist refer to Big Dog as, "Johnny."
  • Perma Stubble: Hollywood, even in the episodes where he plays a woman.
  • Pet the Dog: On one episode, the bully who torments Kenny Fowler gives him chocolate malt balls through the computer while shocking their substitute teacher (Mr. H).
  • Pie-Eyed: Used in "Hobo Hounds", which was made to look like an old silent cartoon.
  • Puff of Logic: Secret defeats a living quark by showing him via a dictionary that he is purely a hypothetical particle and thus doesn't exist.
  • Running Gag: The piece of corn randomly appearing.
    • The beginnings of the Red episodes have quite a few gags, such as Big Dog getting covered in flowers and Little Dog offering the same dead squirrel in varying stages of decay.
  • Simpleton Voice: Big Dog.
  • Sit On The Camera: in the cartoon "Substitute Teacher" in the beginning the camera zooms out from the principal's butt which was filling the screen.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The music played during the giant door in "Cookies, Ookies, Blookies" sounds like "Thus Spoke Zarathustra".
    • "Cartoon Canines" has a lot of homages to other cartoons.
      Drill Sergeant: No cutesy in my corps, only classic funny cartoons. You know, lots of butt jokes! Too Beanie! Too out there! Too in there! Too diseased!
    • Also in "Cartoon Canines", in a in-show segment parodying the likes of Tom and Jerry, a large cat sits on the Little Dog, saying "Did I do that?", then the little dog, who is now green-skinned, muscular and very pissed off proceeds to lift the cat off of him.
    • The naming scheme of the Red sequels mimic that of the Star Wars original trilogy.
    • In "Red", Red mistakes Big Dog for her grandmother, and from her point of view he looks like Granny Clampett.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Hollywood.
  • Something Completely Different:
    • "Cartoon Canines", a very slow paced episode portraying the dogs as Animated Actors, who showcase little to none of their trademark stupidity, and the episode concludes with a Big Lipped Alligator Moment.
    • "Hobo Hounds" is a tribute to the silent era black-and-white cartoons of the 1920s.
  • Spoof Aesop
    • Used as a Running Gag in the episode with the not-Brady Bunch, with the father regularly asking the kids what they learned from various events during the episode, only for them to keep coming up with Non Sequitur aesops.
  • Springtime for Hitler:
    • One episode in Vegas has the dogs only want to go to a casino's hot dog buffet. However, Big Dog wins a huge jackpot in the slots prompting the casino's owner to force them to gamble in order to get his money back, but they end up nearly draining the casino dry of money instead. Eventually the Big Dog loses after the owner agreed to give the two all the hot dogs from the buffet in exchange.
    • During the The Price Is Right spoof the little dog keeps trying to lose every round because he wants the consolation prize box of doggy treats. Naturally he wins every round. Taken to a truly ridiculous extreme when the dog sabotages the final round to avoid winning the grand prize — a luxury car. The host calls him out on cheating and makes him take the car.
  • Suddenly Shouting: Hollywood and Red are prone to speak this way.
  • The Renaissance Age of Animation
  • Three Shorts
  • Too Dumb to Live: the main duo.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Cats for the little dog.