"Oh, Wander over Yonder And check out this and that If you Wander over Yonder Best be sure to wear your hat All the things that you will see And you certainly will be free If you Wander over Yonder, Just you and me!"
Wander Over Yonder is an animated Disney Channel original series, the third to be created by animation-legend Craig McCracken. Lauren Faust is a co-producer and story editor. A preview aired on August 16th, 2013 following the premiere of Phineas And Ferb Mission Marvel. The first season started on September 13th.The show is about the exploits of Wander (Jack McBrayer), a furry, orange, extremely optimistic hippie-thing and his faithful steed Sylvia (April Winchell) as they travel across the galaxy spreading freedom and happiness, all while under the watch of the evil Lord Hater (Keith Ferguson), his henchman Commander Peepers (Tom Kenny), and his army of Watchdogs.The general feel and look of the series pays much homage to animation and popular culture from The Sixties (a pretty standard motif of McCracken's works, really), as well as Ward Kimball's 1950's space projects for Disney. However, in a big departure from the stiffer and rather stylized animation normally associated with Mc Cracken, Wander favours a bouncier and more expressive look reminiscent of vintage rubberhose cartoons (Eddie Trigueros, one of the show's directors and storyboard artists, is a modern day master of the style). All in all, it's one heck of a trip.Now with its own Best Episode Crowner!Its recap page could use a little love, and a hug.
This show contains examples of the following tropes:
Angrish: Lots to go around, particularly on Hater and Peepers' parts.
Sylvia does a lot of it, too.
Ambiguously Human: Brad Starlight and Princess Demurra in "The Hero". If they are human, they're the only ones we've seen so far.
Aside Glance: In "The Prisoner", While dancing and bouncing around on Lord Hater's Water Bed in his room. Wander pushes one of the button that played the Big Bad exercising video and gave this to the viewer.
Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: In "The Prisoner" Wander is distracted by Peepers' laser gunsight, chasing the dot as if he were a cat and seemingly oblivious to the fact that Peepers is trying to capture him.
Bad-Guy Bar: In Doomstone in "The Bad Guy." Subverted when it turns out the townspeople aren't "real" bad guys.
Badass Mustache: Wander wears one while pretending to be tough in "The Bad Guy".
Big Damn Heroes: Played straight and subverted. In 'The Fugitives', Sylvia's last-minute rescue is foiled because she's outnumbered by Watchdogs. However, the citizens of the planet pull one of their own to repay Wander for helping them throughout the episode, and in later episodes, such as 'The Pet' and 'The Prisoner', Sylvia proves she's more than capable of rescuing Wander on her own if she needs to.
Big Eater: Sylvia. Whether it's thinking about food or gorging herself on sandwiches, Sylvia always wants something in her belly.
Body Surf: In 'The Fancy Party', Queen Entozoa invites villains from across the cosmos in hopes of finding potential heir for her space armada. However, when Lord Hater triumphs over the competition she grabs him and reveals that she really just wanted a new host as her current body was wearing out. Interference from Wander leaves her spirit trapped in a sandwich.
Book Ends: The episodes The Day & The Night both end where the other starts, making them effectively some sort of endless loop.
Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: When Wander is speculating the contents of the titular box in "The Box", he thinks it might have a bat, a hat, a bat with a hat or a hat with a bat.
Break the Cutie: Wander drives himself mad trying to resist opening the box in "The Box".
Clown Car Base: Lord Hater's spaceship is barely bigger then a two-storey house on the outside, but has a dungeon, a zoo full of captive animals, and a mall on the inside.
Cold Turkeys Are Everywhere: In The Fugitives, Hater's minions attempt to draw out Wander by causing multiple accidents that Wander wants to assist people with, but can't due to promising Sylvia that he wouldn't help anyone else due to it constantly causing their escape plans to fail. Wander caves in.
Dangerously Genre Savvy: Lord Hater is aware that Wander is a major factor preventing him from taking over the universe and is always there to stop him. He views him as a Worthy Opponent of sorts and takes him into account for most of his plans in "The Brainstorm".
Dark Is Not Evil: The inhabitants of Doomstone look like monsters and thugs, but are actually perfectly nice people... who pretend to be violent villains because they assume everyone else in the town actually is based on its reputation as a Wretched Hive.
In "The Hero", the supposedly princess-kidnapping dragon is in a legitimate relationship with said princess. Driven home when the "hero" kidnaps her and it's up to Wander to rally the dragon's demonic forces to go rescue her. Not that it matters, as she rescued herself.
Don't Explain the Joke: Invoked by Sylvia at the end of "The Ball", when Wander explains how he was inspired to save Buster's victims. When they cried "flee", he came up with the idea that they should "flea" - i.e., live like fleas on the surface of Buster himself. Which turns out to be a nice place to live.
Dramatic Irony: In "The Pet" the audience sees the alien cut up a teddy bear and put in a cocoon, but when Sylvia finds and opens the cocoon she thinks it's Wander's remains.
Drool Hello: In "The Bounty", Commander Peepers lures one of the bounty hunters into the pen of a dangerous creature. She only notices it when it drools on her.
Droste Image: Seen in a dream sequence in "The Box". There's an extended animatic version at the end of the episode.
Dudley Do-Right Stops to Help: Wander in "The Fugitives", whose compulsion to help anyone in need keeps ruining Sylvia's attempts to escape. The Watchdogs even exploit that to try to draw him out.
Egopolis: Lord Hater tried to do this to the Planet Bingleborp in "The Greatest." Hater's a bit of an egomaniac, as evidenced by all the designs (and theme song) on his ship.
Eye Am Watching You: Lord Hater does this to Commander Peepers in one episode. Notably, he had just teleported out of his ship. He teleported back in just for the sake of doing it.
Eye Scream: In "The Prisoner" Peepers gets accidentally teleported into space by Wander and his eye swells to an enormous size and becomes bloodshot. Considering that Peepers is mostly an eyeball to begin with, this can't be very comfortable for him.
Fluffy the Terrible: The alien in "The Pet" is given the name Captain Tim by Wander. It was the name of the ship's captain, whose dogtag Wander finds inside its gullet.
Fluffy Tamer: Wander does manage to teach Captain Tim some tricks, but he's still too dangerous for him to keep as a pet. He's perfect for Lord Hater, though.
Foreshadowing: In "The Fancy Party" Queen Entozoa rejects potential inheritors who she sees as weak. It turns out this is because she is really a parasitic demon who needs a new, strong body to possess. Also she is named after a type of parasite.
Ghost Ship: "The Pet" takes place aboard one, naturally containing a monster that wants to eat everything aboard.
Gone Behind The Bend: In "The Picnic", Hater chases Wander around a tall narrow rock, until Wander climbs up on it to watch the planets align, leaving Hater to run around the rock until he finds Wander on top and resumes chasing him.
Goofy Print Underwear: Lord Hater wears purple and pink polka-dot boxers under his robes (which is strange, since he claims to hate the color purple).
"Groundhog Day" Loop: "The Night", which is a continuation of the previous episode, "The Day", ends exactly where "The Day" began, with Sylvia waking up to discover Wander asleep and they are on Hater's ship.
Ham-to-Ham Combat: "The Picnic" plays it straight with Lord Hater vs. Emperor Awesome, and has a one-sided variation with Hater vs. Wander.
Hammerspace: Wander's hat. It won't give you what you want, it'll give you what you need.
In "The Picnic", Wander's hat holds the picnic basket, which itself contains multitudes.
In "The Greatest" the hat holds Wander's "Greatest in the Galaxy" trophy.
Wander also sleeps in his hat, as shown in "The Prisoner" and "The Lonely Planet".
The episode "The Night" has a non-romantic-love example. Sylvia, exhausted from the events of "The Day" has stated that she needs a really quiet night. Wander goes to great lengths to keep the whole planet silent for her. However, once he's done that, he becomes aware of his own heartbeat, which begins hammering through his furry orange chest.
The episode "The Fugitives" has Wander's heart beat out his chest as he describes the good feeling he gets from helping others.
Imagine Spot: In "The Bounty" when Wander, Sylvia, and Peepers have been eaten by a carnivorous potted plant, Peepers has one in where Lord Hater gives the plant his job and he's demoted to scrub duty.
I Resemble That Remark: In "The Good Deed" Lord Hater screams that he's not emotionally unstable just before flipping the psychic's table over and vowing revenge on the sun because he was upset over his reading.
Jump Scare: In "The Pet" there's one at the end of the credits.
Laser-Guided Karma: The basis for "The Fugitives." When Wander helps out a lot of strangers instead of trying to escape, those strangers orchestrate his escape at the end.
Leitmotif: Lord Hater always seems to be accompanied by heavy metal music.
Commander Peepers has his own theme music that is mostly heard in episodes centered on him. It is a march, that often ends with Andy Bean singing, "Commander Pee-peeeeeerrrrrrrs."
Line Of Sight Naming: Sylvia's alias for her date with Lord Hater, "Linguini von Breadstick". Wander and Sylvia happened to be at the same Italian restaurant as Hater at the time.
Monster Is a Mommy: In the episode "The Egg", Wander finds a giant egg fallen from a nest and concludes this is the case for the monster attacking Sylvia and him. He's wrong, but the egg's real mother is bigger and meaner than the monster that was trying to kill them, and very grateful that they helped her baby.
Mood Whiplash: In "The Greatest," we have the scene where an enraged Lord Hater looms over a frightened Wander and Sylvia, proclaiming he's the greatest in the galaxy. Immediately after this tense moment...Wander gives Hater a great big hug with a heart appearing in the background.
Wander: Well, congratulations! That's amazing!
Mundane Made Awesome: The episode with the longest title, "The Epic Quest of Unfathomable Difficulty!!!", is all about Wander and Sylvia going on an epic quest........to return a missing sock to its owner.
Hater: "Slow down, I just wanna destroy you!" note (The line references, Bloo says "Wait! Stop! I just wanna punch you!" to Eduardo in the first episode of Foster's. Bloo and Lord Hater are both voiced by Keith Ferguson making it an Actor Allusion also.)
Pet the Dog: Hater normally loves tormenting Peepers, but in "The Fancy Party" he saves Peepers as they're running away from Queen Entozoa's guards. In the credits animatic you can actually see Hater grabbing Peepers as he runs to his ship.
Right on Queue: A Running Gag on "The Nice Guy", where Wander finds a long line every time he goes to pay, no matter how empty the store seems to be.
Sanity Slippage: Poor Wander has already gone through two nervous breakdowns, in "The Fugitives" and "The Box". And they are uniformly caused by the same thing: Wander having to repress his natural urges of curiosity and helpfulness.
Secret Test of Character: In "The Box", Sylvia and Wander have to deliver a box without opening it first, which Wander finds hard to resist. When they finally make it, they are informed by Sufficiently Advanced Aliens that they were being tested on their integrity. Even when told this, Wander still obsesses over what's in the box, so Sylvia makes the aliens put something in the empty box to keep him from having a Heroic BSOD. The items they put in the box are completely mundane, but they're good enough for Wander.
"The Pet": After thinking Wander was eaten by the alien, Sylvia activates the ship's self-destruct to keep the alien from escaping. When she discovers that Wander is still alive, she has to return and get him out before the ship explodes.
"The Prisoner": Wander activates the self-destruct in Lord Hater's ship. Hater waits for Peepers to apologize before deactivating it at literally the last second.
Seriously Scruffy: Inverted; The titular character suffers stress from being prevented from helping, or from his curiosity being denied but doing so actually clears it up. The stress takes the form of his eyes changing colour, pupils changing size, his fur getting frizzy and brittle, and patches appearing on his hat.
Sheathe Your Sword: In "The Troll", Wander realizes that the only reason the troll gets bigger is because he's powered by people responding to his taunts. To beat him, Wander just curls up by a fireplace and ignores him.
Talking to Themself: Wander has demonstrated on multiple occasions his incredible ability to take on multiple roles at once when needed, once even enacting an entire courtroom scene by himself to stop a feud.
Sylvia: (Grinning) That made no sense whatever!
Theme Tune Cameo: In "The Greatest" during the fair, everyone is singing a wordless version of this.
Tin-Can Telephone: In "The Hat", Wander and Sylvia use these to communicate while separated. Unlike the traditional versions, these cans have antennae, meaning they really can communicate over long distances.
Troll: A literal and personality type at the same time. Like an Internet troll, he gets his strength from people reacting to his insults and offenses and thus Wander reveals the way to defeat him is by not giving in to his hype.
Truncated Theme Tune: When "The Fancy Party" premiered on Disney XD, Wander became a victim of this trope. The shortened theme is slightly faster and after the first chorus, Wander does not point ahead. Instead, he points upward in a worried manner and there is different music for Hater's portion and different imagery, then it goes straight to the final chorus.