These are what we call the 'YMMV items.' Things that some people find in this work. We call them 'your mileage might vary' because not everyone sees these things in the same way. This starts discussions in the trope lists, a thing we don't want. Please use the discussion page if you'd like to discuss any of these items.
Acceptable Religious Targets: Played with in "Superjail! Grand Prix" with Turban (the Middle-Eastern inmate), when Jared fears that he'll suicide-bomb the race due to his loss. Instead, Turban uses his remote to open up his falafel truck and serve the other losing inmates food.
Alternative Character Interpretation: Does the Warden actually care about rehabilitating the inmates, or is he just a megalomaniac only interested in making them suffer? The creators have actually considered both as valid interpretations, with their own answers and ideas on the Warden varying over the years.
Christy Karacas has also stated that the Warden sometimes reads as a more asexual type of character or "confused", while at other times he definitely bears interest in women. As Karacas admits there's no solid canon for the Warden's sexuality, the fans' own interpretations can also run wild, especially as to whether or not he might also have interest in men.
For Alice, her transgender status has brought two different interpretations, one being that she actually did realize her gender identity from her love for her old warden, while an alternative fan theory painted her in a Hedwig and the Angry Inch situation where she didn't want to be a gay man, yet accepted and decided to live as a woman even after rejection. However, season 3 threw that theory into doubt, showing that Alice had a repressed feminine identity since her youth (even wearing her mother's dress and heels to beat up another child). But as canon is admittedly loose and the show runs on Rule of Funny, many details about her past can be up for interpretation.
In the more serious-hitting end of the debate centering on the "Alice as Hedwig" stance, there are those that criticize Alice and doubt her gender identity by pointing out that she was quick to undergo hormones and possibly surgery (save for reconstruction of genitalia) without any therapy, as if she did it on impulse and making it seem like she wanted to be a woman just so she wouldn't be seen as gay. Though Alice herself definitely does not like being seen as or referred to as a man, and seems pretty sure of who she is (biological ignorances aside, such as the scrapped plot point in "Warbuxx" with her believing she got a period). It all seems to really boil down to fan views on whether Alice is actually meant to be any representation of a transgender woman, or just a gross and cruel stereotype that's barely a character (see Unfortunate Implications).
Alice's "package" was a detail quite debated over by fans in the early episodes. Although Karacas would reveal the character was transgender in 2009 and even detailed a bit of her backstory, the actual revelation in season 2 had a portion of fans upset that he had ruined their own theories. Since then, Karacas has sort of played coy about Alice's genitalia whenever asked, although the show itself has continued with the gags about the large member.
Whether or not the Warden has genuinely adoring feelings for Alice, or if he's just a horny pervert objectifying and lusting after her in some complex for having controlling women (seeing as how he went after the shape-shifting Hunter so easily too). Knowing the Warden and the acknowledged loose canon surrounding him, it could be a little of both.
To particular fans fixated on the matter, whether or not the Mistress is just playing hard to get in her disgust at the Warden, and whether or not either of them could actually have feelings for each other.
Jared's "Dream Machine" fantasy: Simply him fantasizing of being in control of the Warden to every degree, or proof of him having feelings beyond platonic for his boss? There are those that still debate on the matter.
Jared's girlfriend Charise has also had cases of alternative interpretation, especially since season 3. Some fans believe she's truly innocent, addiction-free, and would be the star-crossed complement to Jared. Others however, propose the idea that she's more of a Stepford Smiler with her own issues and addictions that she keeps under-wraps. Then there are others yet who present the interpretation of her being clingy and spiteful, manipulating Jared for her own means and desire to have a boyfriend and believe that she was to blame for Jared's more impulsive personality in episodes like "Superfail" (with the idea that she was attempting to turn him against the Warden by giving him more confidence).
Base Breaker: Lord Stingray, though it's more over whether or not adding him was necessary. That, and whether or not he's as offbeat as the other characters, or simply too bland and "normal" for the show's universe.
The Twins are also this in some parts of the fanbase, along with the Mistress. In Mistress' case, she was always a sort of base breaker, while the Twins started out more vocally hated, with their fans steadily becoming just as vocal after seasons 2 and 3.
Better on DVD: Arguably season 2, with all the extras and being the only release so far to actually live up to the "uncensored" label. While the episodes are still of debatable quality and reception, the commentary tracks for some of them offer plenty trivia and insight, or just the chance to hear the crew members goofing off and having fun. The episodes are also all uncensored in dialogue and content (save for one pre-censored shot that was always meant to be a gag: Alice's genitalia in "Vacation"), it has a wider selection of animatics than the season 1 and season 3 releases, some animation tests, and even an option to have the actual script pages of "Vacation" be shown alongside the episode as it plays. This release was also where they started including the "Introstring", a long video compilation of all the season's opening sequences.
Big Lipped Alligator Moment: As wild as the show gets, there tend to be small bits used for transitions or brief shots that don't make sense in any context beyond showing just how strange the jail is. An early one is the giant gingerbread whipping inmates and making them mine for candy in "Superbar", which is then used to transition out to show Alice's box of chocolates.
"Combaticus" has a brief bit where a random inmate is experiencing Mind Rape from the Doctor. He even asks "What do you want with me?" but never gets an answer.
"Superfail" has a brief scene of a desperate vampire crawling about in the air vents and longing for a taste of blood. He dies and crumbles to dust just before he can sample a drop.
"Special Needs" has the Twins randomly riding a rat through the air vent, and then they teleport into a fancy room- to simply sit around and play music (their techno beat). While wearing bizarre masks.
"Sticky Discharge", which aired a week before, had the two simply show up in a cameo to eat living goldfish and then inflate one into a giant balloon to ride around on.
Broken Base: It's still a point of contention among fans as to whether the show should have ended at "Time-Police", or if the new seasons are a worthy continuation. There are fans that insist any criticisms of change are just other people being anti-character development, while another portion insist that the change in writing format and the switch in studios have stained the show's quality.
While season 2 was mostly criticized, an opposite faction believed the original episodes to have been too smutty and nonsensical.
Whether the animation style in seasons 2 and 3 is better or worse.
"Best Friends Forever" was the first notable example of an episode dividing the fanbase, even more so because it was the premiere of the second season and the abrupt difference in format left several discussion forums very heated in debate and frustration over the show changing.
Lord Stingray's addition to the cast, as mentioned above. The arguments about him continue, as he'd also been promoted to the main cast for seasons 3 and 4.
After Stingray's addition, the debut of Prison Peedee ( aka The Rat) is another point where fans either latch on to the character, or use him as a sign of the show having jumped the shark. While it may seem odd at first, as he was a one-shot for season 3 aside from his return cameo at the end of "Planet Radio", Karacas' stated intention for him to be promoted to the main cast in season 4 is what had caused this.
Alice's backstory in "Jailbot 2.0" is either seen as something that helped make her more understandable, or an unnecessary addition that ruined the character. And then there are those that insist her being more overtly feminine (or trying to be) has made her less of a badass, or that she was better when she talked less.
The Twins being confirmed as aliens has caused some friction, along with their decreased appearances:
"The Budding of the Wurbuxx" was one particular episode that split fans. Some deemed it as ruining the Twins by making them too alien, some fans claimed it made them entirely irredeemable and that no other fan should possibly like them anymore due to what they did, and then you had those that just latched on to their bizarre biology and the the male pregnancy depicted (even if it ended horribly). The fact the episode had no Jacknife opening (due to it being cut), as well as a lack of bloodbaths also garnered mixed reviews: some hated those points, while there were fans claiming it felt the most like a season 1 episode even without the mass carnage.
While "Hot Chick" and "The Trouble with Triples" are generally looked upon more fondly, the first has earned scorn in some fan spaces for doing away with the mystery about the Twins' origin, and the latter owing to the rather divisive opinions on the characters and the Gainax Ending employed that gave people the impression that they'd be written out or missing. There's also debate over the two being portrayed more on the Butt Monkey side, whether it's effective for not having them overpowered and making them a little more understandable, or if it was all too easy of a way to sideline the characters in the later seasons.
Fans that enjoy the Warden being more sadistic vs. him being more openly childish. His Flanderization as the seasons go on vs. his personality in the pilot is a continuous debate over which version was the more effective type of lead character.
"Stingstress": A reasonable wrap-up to the season 2 cliffhanger, or a rushed resolution? Mistress' change at the end of the episode (which stuck through the season) is debated as a good gag twist for her character, or something that derailed her. And of course, the event that lead her there.
The announcement of season 4 only being six episodes, coupled with fear that the show could be cancelled afterwards, has made another split in fans: Some want to hold out for the next season, while some have deemed the show "dead" and have criticized others for wanting to continue watching.
The shipping debates can create a schism in some corners themselves. Especially when it concerns pairings with controversial dynamics; see Twincest or Warden/Jared.
The existence of slash pairings (see the shipping debates above), adult-oriented fanart (ie: porn), crossover fanart, East Asian artists drawing the characters (or Western fans trying to draw them in anime style) and anything some fans deem as sullying the show's underground reputation is quick to cause fanbase fracturing and flamewars.
Complete Monster: The Warden's father is widely seen this way. Has to pretty much do with him being psychologically and verbally abusive to his son, forcing him to kill a puppy he'd just met, and doing all he could to torment the child and crush his dreams. For a show where characters die by the dozen and with much loose continuity employed, he's one of the rare characters whose death is significant and sticks (as it was necessary for the Warden to grow up and create his own jail)
Then there's the Warden's "Inner Child" from season 1, a literal monster who's full of hate and rage.
Contested Sequel: Season 2, for various reasons among fans. Some felt that the animation suffered a drop in quality or became too fluid and more like Looney Tunes, rather than an adult cartoon. The reduced bloodbath sequences and more wordy scripting were also criticized, along with some choices made in character development. Season 3 attempted to mix the scripting style of season 2 (story before visuals) with the more visual quality of season 1, and seemed to go over a little better, but it's not without critique or confusion.
Counterpart Comparison: The Warden and Willy Wonka, which was intentional on the part of the creators when they decided to redesign the character to fit his "sadistic Wonka" personality. The Warden has also been compared to the Once-ler due to their suits and narcissism (although this comparison has received backlash).
Alice and Hunter Gathers' post-op appearance used to be compared, as both were redheads with rather masculine faces (although Alice is significantly brawnier and Gathers' change was undone).
Lord Stingray often gets compared to the Monarch due to their similar color schemes and statuses as supervillains, even though he was meant to be an Expy of Cobra Commander. Network executives were even stumped by the guy.
There were some that thought of the Twins as being similar to the Lemongrabs due to their single-minded nature and bond, although they predated those characters ( That, and the Lemongrabs quickly became a rather awful comparison in hindsight). They were also equated with the Life in Hell characters of Akbar and Jeff during the season 1 era, when some fans weren't entirely sure if they were twin brothers or simply identical in another sense. Less often but occasionally, a Votoms fan or two or even a Superjail fan will draw a comparison between the twins from that series and the Twins.
Creator's Pet: Lord Stingray earned this accusation in season 2, as although there was a stretch of episodes where he didn't appear, there were fans that felt he was awkwardly shoe-horned into the episodes that he did cameo in or that he got too much focus in the plots. He then went missing for most of season 3, save for having large roles in the premiere and the final two episodes, but has been said to feature heavily in season 4 (which compared to the previous three seasons, has a much smaller order of episodes). Although in Stingray's case, there are at least a few other characters that find him to be an annoyance, although he's become prominent enough to lead a bunch of other inmates (which would usually be Nicky or someone else's role).
Crosses the Line Twice: This happens at least once a minute on this show. By the time any given episode is over, the line is practically obliterated.
Due to both being sea creature-themed, Lord Stingray has wound up paired off with Emperor Awesome from Wander Over Yonder.
Die for Our Ship Even if Warden and Mistress are far from an official couple, some fans really felt threatened by the idea of Mistress "getting in the way" of potential slash ships and threw ridiculous hate her way. This seemed to die down a little after she slept with Alice.
Although on the flip side, Alice herself has received some hate from Warden/Mistress fans over the idea of her allegedly getting in the way.
While less common these days and not to the extent of hate that the Mistress got, Charise was seethed at by Warden/Jared fans who insisted that she'd only ruin Jared's life, wasn't as "important" to him as the Warden was, or that she needed to die in order for Jared to realize how more important the Warden was in his life.
Draco in Leather Pants: While it could apply to everyone considering the show discussed here, Lord Stingray seems to get hit with it pretty bad. While there are fans that like him precisely for being a Jerkass, others tend to iron out his flaws and treat him as if he was simply misunderstood and wronged by the Warden, and then have him be a suave handsome lover-type.
The Warden himself should go without saying, although you do get the type of fans that like to ignore the times he was cruel to others and simplify him down to being a poor innocent genius. Complicated by how in debates between Warden diehards and Mistress diehards, either character can become this trope while the fan lambasts the one they don't like for being nothing but "abusive and sociopathic"...while doing what they can to ignore or excuse the flaws of the other for the debate.
The Twins, definitely. In most episodes, they only have a few seconds of screen time, if that.
The Triplets are this to a lesser (but very vocal) extent with a few fans.
Charise gets a bit of this due to her relationship with Jared. As far as the rest of the Ultraprison characters go, they're generally overlooked or ignored unless someone opts to specifically focus on them in fanworks (and even then, the Mistress and Charise are most popular).
As far as season 1 characters go, Cancer and Combaticus have their share of fans.
Among Lord Stingray's biggest fans in the Korean fanbase and on Tumblr, Mistress Kilda seems to get a fair share of fanart and attention despite (or in spite of) the fact that she only had one line and was quickly killed off by Alice. Mainly has to do with the fact that she was Stingray's wife, as well as her kink-fueling design.
Estrogen Brigade: Quite the example of one, though it's not without criticism or anger directed at it from certain male fans of the show who feel that it gets dumbed down with a female fanbase. The creators were surprised by the amount of women they found enjoying the show.
Fandom Nod: "Stingstress" referencing the idea of ridiculous and unusual pairings, with the Mistress first getting together with Lord Stingray and then Alice sleeping with her. It also features an imaginary sequence of the Warden and the Mistress as an apparent perfect couple, while the rest of the episode subverts that idea.
In a disputed and possible unintentional example, "Planet Radio" (the last episode written of season 3) has been thought to evoke the fandom spoiling and finding plot details and twists before the crew and official Superjail tumblr (which spoiled things in advance itself) could. The Warden and the staff as the creators, and Lord Stingray and the leader of the rats/Peedee as the fans. There's also a bit where the inmates became angered at the Twins taking over Jailbot's screentime as Jailpup, which has been debated as referencing similar reactions to the pair that happened in season 1 and that can still persist (that they get in the way of others' screentime and development).
"The Trouble with Triples" has the Twins state, as part of their ridiculous lie to their elder brothers, that people love them and refer to them as "Bad-A Mo-Effers" on Earth. Before this episode, Christy Karacas pointed out the oddness in not only having a vocal viewership of female fans, but that there seemed to be many fans of these particular characters.
Fandom Rivalry / Friendly Fandoms: A mix of these tropes happened somewhat with the Once-ler (Lorax) fandom, after fans from each began doing crossover fanart of the Warden and Once-ler together. While there were Once-ler fans eager to meet fans of a character who apparently resembled theirs, others blasted Superjail! as "disgusting smut" and loudly railed against those who dared to watch or join in on its fandom (although some of those who hated the show did concede that the Warden was the only "good" part), as if were betrayal. Otherwise, fans from the two seem to get along, though there have also been backlash and accusations that those who were into Lorax before Superjail! only enjoy the latter because of the Warden resembling the Once-ler, and shouldn't be considered "true" fans.
Fanon: There are a few concepts that seem to crop up among fans. One is the idea that the Warden's name could be "David", after his voice actor, or that he has Purple Eyes.
Lord Stingray being a yellow mutant half-man half-sea creature was popularized by a roleplayer and spread around in some fanart. In the show, he's shown to have a clearly human body (and having a bit of a gut), though he never removes his helmet. Others conceptualize his unmasked self asawicked blond man with razor sharp teeth, and someevenhave him as an outright Evil Counterpart to the Warden, having dark hair but wearing red glasses and having the sharp teeth instead of the tooth gap.
In "Ladies' Night", the small ship that the Ultraprison staff ride in is a pink orb, which proceeds to sprout a pair of legs and "spread" them in order for its porthole to open and release the staff.
Alice is revealed to have been conveniently storing her billy club down the front of her dress in one scene, while Bruce only smirks and pulls out a much larger billy club that he's been storing down the front of his pants. Alice isn't impressed.
After the Ultraprison and Superjail inmates get to having sex with each other, the gym building sprays a torrent of mud out through its roof in a rather suggestive manner. To top it off, Jared and Charise are sitting at the top of the building known as "The Tip", which resembles a penis.
Future Alice's mecha in "Time-Police part 1" can grow a phallic-shaped extension from the bottom, which is used to clobber enemy troops.
The Mistress is shown riding in a very phallic pink rocketship during her missile competition with Lord Stingray at the start of "Stingstress". The same episode has the Ultraprison ship (shaped like a ring) having docked itself around the Superjail volcano. When the Mistress decides to give up on conquering Superjail, the ship rises and pulls out of the volcano.
A brief glimpse at the inside of that Ultraprison ship shows several pink pods/doors in the walls (possibly to the cells) to be modeled after breasts, complete with nipples protruding out of them.
The sex sequence in the climax of the episode also features various phallic imagery and visual metaphors for sex such as a train going into a tunnel, breasts being depicted as mountains, a jackhammer drilling away at a clam, a rocket of sperm, and so on.
The Twins, as part of their fancy fake overlord get-up in "The Trouble with Triples", go around wearing a pair of headpieces with rather phallic protrusions in the front.
An earlier example with the same characters involved them riding about in a pair of ball-shaped vehicles called "Chaos Orbs" in "Superjail Grand Prix". Alice and Jared even lampshaded the two's "balls" by the end.
Jean and Paul's missile machines used in "Nightshift" are both shaped like penises, complete with sets of testicles to go with.
Fridge Brilliance: if anybody belongs in Superjail, it's an actual supervillain like Lord Stingray.
The Mistress somehow managing to take over Superjail might have come off as a sudden swerve for the season 2 cliffhanger. But she had at least two months to pull it off (if she didn't just instantly show up at the jail right when the Warden returned), and Lord Stingray might have helped her fully hack into the systems after they'd met. That, and with the Warden gone for those months, the jail could have been on a lockdown that she managed to somehow break. Or there's also the fan-theory that perhaps the Twins let her in to stir up this trouble.
While there are viewers that may find Alice's flashback narration of her acting like she always realized she was a woman to be ridiculous, it's actually not too far off from how some transgender people would rather think of their lives: Namely, not wanting to be reminded of the incorrect body and assigned gender identity that they'd struggled to get away from. In Alice's case, though, there's a lot of alternative interpretation surrounding her backstory and personality. That, and Alice's arrogance over her looks and refusal to admit to any fears or flaws seems to be part of the running gag with her overall character (so even if she's downplaying a situation through her dialogue, such as her heartbreak or confusion, viewers can see the difference).
Notice that Alice was the first thing for the Wurbuxx bud to see and how happy it became with being in her arms. Then consider that it may have very well been an offspring of the Twins, with how easily it is for them to lie or be shady about their circumstances (if they didn't consider it a child, no one else should). The Wurbuxx imprinted on Alice as a mother and was then eaten by its "parents".
The Warden is shown to have bitten off a puppy's tail as a child, as a background gag in his photo album in "Ghosts". This could be seen as proof of the Warden having always been a little unstable and sadistic, but then factor in the flashbacks from "Superfail" and another frightening and sad layer is added to his history with dogs.
Fridge Logic: In "Oedipus Mess", the memorial park is referred to as "Cancer Memorial Park" and displays the birth and death year of Cancer. This has confused a fan or two, and made them wonder if that's in fact her actual name (more likely, it was a coincidence for the sake of the gag, but you never know with the world in the show).
Even with taking some loopholes into account, there are those that feel like the Mistress taking over Superjail could be considered an Ass Pull since the jail should have been completely shut down in the Warden's absence. There are also fans that decried "Best Friends Forever"'s plot twist of having the Warden ejected from Superjail for a time, noting that the jail should have shut down once he was outside of it. Although, as the show's continuity is admittedly meant to be loose and episodic (save for instances where continuity has carried over), it's debatable if the rule from "Time-Police" even still applies note And also taking into account that Karacas said that the crew simply chose to ignore that two-parter and basically treat it as having been retconned away.
"Funny Aneurysm" Moment: Although the gag was animated long before, the bong of "Macho Man" Randy Savage in "The Budding of the Warbuxx" came off as a really eerie coincidence for most, seeing as the episode wound up airing two days after his death. The crew wound up realizing the unfortunate coincidence of the timing and remarked upon it in the commentaries.
Germans Love David Hasselhoff: The show, despite (or in spite of) not airing on any overseas networks, has plenty of fans spread about the world who'll do what they can to watch. Most notably and vocal would be the South Korean and Japanese fans drawing Animesque fanart and doujinshi, and Pixiv gaining its own "Superjail!" tags.
Lord Stingray is a rather divisive character in Western discussions, but receives plenty of vocal adoration from the South Korean following for the show.
Growing the Beard: Season 3, in some varied views. The creators themselves feel this where the show came into its own, although fans either strongly agree or disagree on the matter.
Hilarious in Hindsight: One story that was forced to be dropped from season 1 development happened to be a Superjail-less plot where Jacknife evaded capture, and him and Jailbot spent the entire episode fighting outside in the real world (with citizens cheering on Jacknife, believing him to be fighting against an alien invasion). Adult Swim's executives didn't like the story as the Warden and jail wouldn't appear at all. A season later, "Best Friends Forever" aired, and although both the Warden and jail were featured in a side-story, the main plot of the episode spotlighted Jailbot and Jacknife and featured them trapped in a world outside of the jail. And in the end, Jacknife gets to go free anyway.
The fact that cannibalism has said to have been a banned subject in the show, when it was part of the plot towards the end of the pilot and very memorable in the disturbing twist. It also featured briefly in "Cold-Blooded". Along with the "no killing babies/children" rule, it appears different restrictions must have come into play during the hiatus between seasons 1 and 2.
First Twin: "Would you like to accompany me to the concert show tonight?"
Other Twin: "Are you asking me out on a date?"
First Twin: "Maybe..." (both giggle)
The first Twin's observant and delighted reaction to his brother's budding in "The Budding of the Warbuxx", along with him acting as if he were a worried husband in some scenes, had also had fans wondering a little about their sexuality although in the end, they just ate the Warbuxx.
The official Playboy tie-in comic had a panel of the two hugging on to each other in glee, with pink hearts surrounding them. Their whole dialogue about their mass milk-producing solution also comes off a little dodgy, with one Twin referring to it as a "wet and creamy dream come true".
Internet Backdraft: While you may see civil disagreement part of the time on this matter, some forums and sites will not be as understanding if you ask people their opinions on the show continuing after the first season.
Alice in general. Be it her backstory being revealed and spoiling some fans' own theories on her, whether or not she's offensive to transgender people (or women in general), whether or not she's a horrible person for not returning Warden's crush on her, if she's somehow being in the way of other pairings, if she's a strong female character or considered too ugly/bizarre... there's pretty much bound to be some sort of uproar over her if someone doesn't tread carefully. Likewise, asking fans what they think of her looks.
Try not to bring up the subject of the Superjail!/Lorax crossovers in some fan spaces.
Original characters, due to the infamy of Deviant ART and the creation of various similar O Cs that amount to being a character's girlfriend or sister, or ones that are recolors or offspring of a character. Even if the characters don't fit those factors or aren't female, tagging them on Tumblr with the series title has been known to incite wrath fast (even from fans with their own original characters for the series).
Twincest: If it's not Warden/Once-ler, chances are if you bring this pairing up, a sector of fandom will explode into fury. In the most extreme cases, you'd either get the type of fans insisting that it's totally canon and that the creators wouldn't know their own characters if it weren't, or their fans angered and appalled that anyone could dare defile their precious favorite characters with such incest and smutnote ]Naturally, the "True Fan" card gets played here. And when they clash, it seems there's little middle ground, or it doesn't get heard well.
In a Hilarious in Hindsight example of backdraft related to the pairing, there was once a huge blowup over a fanartist that drew a gag picture implying one Twin got pregnant, over the implications of mpreg and possible incest and them going against canon. Come "The Budding of the Warbuxx" a season later, and some form of mpreg was canonized... although the episode itself became a subject of heated debate for what it did with the characters.
Careful asking fans how they feel about the plot twist at the end of "Stingstress". Besides the hippie version of Mistress, but what lead her there.
Some fanartists drawing "cute" Superjail! fanworks also doesn't go over well, as many fans tend to find it to be dumbing down the show or taking away its raw edge to make the characters generically cutesy. Although, the Titmouse animators have even had fun with drawing the characters in super deformed style for a doodle jam, so it very much depends on the individual's taste (and whatever context there might be for the cutesy art).
It's Popular, Now It Sucks: When the show went on hiatus between seasons 1 and 2, it experienced a big wave of popularity on deviantART and other fansites. The result? A number of fans cried foul and bemoaned the idea of the show becoming "mainstream" and less underground, as they felt it attracted too many shallow, less intelligent fans that could not appreciate True Art. This periphery backlash was compounded when the show earned a Playboy tie-in comic to promote season 3, as well as being subjected to interviews on MTV News, Comic Book Resources, and the Huffington Post (among others). Some have taken this as the creators "selling out".
It Was His Sled: The twist in "Stingstress" and Cancer's fate (although a foregone conclusion) are notable spoilers that are trickier to keep secret with the passage of time. There's also the matter of Alice's backstory, as well as the Twins' alien nature (or for that matter, the events of "Warbuxx").
Jerkass Woobie: The Warden qualifies due to his massive daddy issues and quite frankly messed up backstory.
Alice can qualify as well for some, due to her own rough past as well as her secret desire to be a mother and to have men desire her.
There are those that see the Twins as this post-"The Trouble with Triples", although others pretty much reflect the Triplets' opinion that they're simply obnoxious idiots with no purpose.
Launcher of a Thousand Ships: The Warden can be paired with just about anyone his fans fancy, whether they're in the show or outside of it. Although, this is also a big point of contention (see Ship to Ship Combat).
Lord Stingray can also be this for his fanbase, as well as the Mistress.
LGBT Fanbase: Alice, to some adult fanartists due to her large breasts and other factors note Although among both transgender fans and non-viewers of the show, Alice is a bit of a contested example (as noted in "Unfortunate Implications"). Jean and Paul occasionally get some fans themselves. There's a good number of gay and bisexual fans, as well as a few transgender or non-binary fans into the show.
Magnificent Bastard: The Warden, at least seen this way in his earlier and more sadistic incarnation.
Memetic Mutation: A Photoshop-altered screencap of Edd (of Ed, Edd n Eddy) wearing yellow glasses and holding a "Jailbot layout" has made the rounds for a few years, either as a joke to illustrate fan theories that the two characters are connected, or being taken seriously and as evidence that the former show had referenced a "Jailbot" long ago.
A fan's "Lord Beast Ray" concept of Lord Stingray became popular among other fanartists, and has been referenced to the point where some new viewers are confused by the human body seen under his clothing in "Stingstress". The other two unmasked versions are also memetic themselves in other parts of the fanbase (ie: The Evil Twin of the Warden with red glasses, and the attractive blond man with the shark-teeth).
Nausea Fuel: The Warden birthing his "Inner Child", and then said demon climbing back into him from wherever it was birthed.
Cookie sabotaging Alice's soup in "Nightshift" by stirring her soiled underwear into the pot, as well as the other things the lunch ladies were shown doing.
It's also directly invoked: Jared takes a spoon to the eye, causing a chain-reaction of vomiting from everyone seated at the table.
Jared being violently shredded apart in "Mayhem Donor" and left as a decapitated head until The Doctor stitches him back up (with the inmates' body parts). Viewers are also treated to a completely naked (and hairy) Doctor commanding a giant monster made up of goop, blood, and inmates' severed body parts. Thankfully his fat blocks the viewer from seeing anything more.
Jared's chewed-up fingers are given a rather grossly detailed close-up in "Jailbot 2.0", showing that he's not only bitten off his nails but chewed his fingertips down to bone.
The Twins being defecated out of the space worm in "The Trouble with Triples", as well as them putting a cheese grater inside Fatty, causing Jailbot to have to violently rip it out through his ass. Or the scene with that one Triplet's huge lactating nipples.
Some of the unflattering close-ups of Alice amount to a combination of this and Fan Disservice.
D.L. Diamond's face without makeup can either be this or pure nightmare fuel, depending on the viewer.
Never Live It Down: Alice sleeping with the Mistress in the season 3 premiere wound up as this for some fans. For the Twins, there's "The Budding of the Wurbuxx".
No Yay: Warden/Jared for some due to the power imbalance and Warden's abuse (Mistress/Charise garners similar divisiveness). The Warden's appalled and disgusted reaction to seeing Jared's dream of making out with him could also be summed up this way.
Those already uncomfortable or disgusted with the idea of Twincest got further repelled by "The Budding of the Warbuxx" showing one appearing to be pregnant... and them proceeding to eat their "baby". It's never quite said what goes into the conception of a Warbuxx bud, if it just spontaneously generates or has some sort of act to trigger it, although it's worth noting Stephen Warbrick even felt uncomfortable with the implication of one Twin being pregnant.
The Future Warden's helmet is a Pickelhaube, introduced by the Prussian army and worn up until the collapse of the German Empire.
One-Scene Wonder: Future Warden, who only appeared in the possible future sequence in "Time Police part 1" and a brief cameo in the paradox battle in "Time Police part 2".
In a lesser example: The Ultraprison counterpart to Gary only showed up in one brief scene in "Ladies' Night", but Ultraprison-centric fans wonder about her and her whereabouts (probably seeing as Gary's notability was gradually increased). There's also the case of "Lady Jacknife" from "Stingstress", who wound up with some fanart to commemorate her appearance, as well as people pairing her off with her male counterpart.
The doberman puppy in "Superfail" spawned much fanart, along with many fans that were shocked and upset by his fate.
Pandering to the Base: "Stingstress" seems to poke fun at the concept of shipping and crack pairs, something that Christy Karacas noted that he was very well aware of when hinting that unexpected characters would be getting it on in season 3. There's even an Imagine Spot of Jared and Charise fantasizing about a perfect "Ultrajail" with the Warden and the Mistress as an adoring, peaceful couple...the reality winds up being quite the opposite, and their fantasy doesn't come true.
Periphery Demographic: The creators were rather surprised to find out how popular the show caught on with female fans.
Wardress or Misden, for the Warden and the Mistress. Depends who fans see as the more dominant one.
Warbot for Warden/Jailbot, Stingden for Warden/Lord Stingray, and Jayden for Warden/Jared.
Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: The Mistress was this for some fans that had previously loathed her, after she went hippie at the end of "Stingstress". Either because she seemingly got nicer, or for those who were paranoid about her getting in the way of shipping, the circumstances seemed to make that look unlikely. Either way, it seems the vocal hatedom for her kind of abruptly went much quieter.
The Twins' fans became a lot more vocal than their hatedom somewhere around season 2, probably helped by the characters being spotlighted a little in "Hot Chick", an episode that mostly went over well (although the revelation of their alien status is contested, and the "The Budding of the Warbuxx" episode much more so). Season 3 seemed to bring in more appreciation after "The Trouble with Triples", likely due to them being portrayed as pitiful buttmonkey-type characters through the episode and making some fans sympathize more. Worked well for some, though still not enough for the fans angered over them eating their potential offspring or that wanted them written out for stealing screentime.
Ron the Death Eater: You'd think the Mistress actually was in the way of the Warden getting anywhere with Lord Stingray or anyone else, the way she's treated in some fanworks. Alternatively Alice, who's demonized for not returning Warden's feelings and for "being in the way" of him getting with O Cs, or of course, him being with the Mistress.
Scapegoat Creator: Chris McCulloch/Jackson Publick got plenty of this reception in season 2, with accusations that he was trying to usurp the show or turn it into Venture Bros 2.0. As he was story editor and had final word on the storyboards (besides scripts), anything and everything that went wrong with an episode had to be his doing, in some fans' eyes. Even as it was later revealed that at least some of the more contested decisions (Alice's backstory, the Twins' portrayal in "Warbuxx", and the creation of Lord Stingray) were actually Karacas and Warbrick's own. Which doesn't necessarily invalidate any critique, but rather that the creators themselves did have some control of their show and were also responsible for things that the fans loved or hated. For what it's worth, Karacas himself isn't too proud of some of the season 2 episodes (although he's never specified the exact ones).
The Scrappy: Generally in the fanbase, one character may be a huge Scrappy for the fanbase of another favored character, as it's felt that the hated character gets too much in the way of their favorite's screentime or goals. The Twins initially fell under this for the most vocal part of the season 1 fanbase, due to them messing up Warden's plans (even if he didn't notice or mind it), and being considered useless filler characters or too flamboyant for some viewers' comfort. But for particular later fans of the show, it's not so much any of the previous reasons but their infamous actions at the end of "The Budding of the Warbuxx" that put them firmly in the Scrappy heap.
Alice is the Scrappy for a part of the fanbase because of her brutality and for not returning Warden's feelings. And then there are those who just plain hate her for "stealing his girl" (Mistress).
Lord Stingray and Mistress tend to fall under this trope for some fans of the other, with fans of the hated character claiming that Warden can only have ONE enemy/rival (or be shipped with such). Then there are those who just hate Stingray for changing up the formula of the show in season 2 and that see him as unnecessary (or that he lacks the proper wackiness that other characters display, or is too obvious of a villain), and those who think of Mistress as too cruel and lacking the Freudian Excuse or more easily loveable traits that the Warden displayed.
Prison Peedee for another part of the fanbase, due to the announcement of his increased role in season 4.
Seasonal Rot: The prevailing reception of season 2, due to its changes. Even if season 3 is generally more fondly looked upon, there are also those that decry it for making Warden too childish and because of the change in animation studio.
Selective Squick: There are those that don't mind the gore in the show, but are put off by the sexual references. Then there are fans that don't mind the more sexual content, but can't stand the violent or trippier parts.
And while there are those that don't mind either the general sex or gore, Alice's bulge or the disturbingly detailed close-ups of things like her mucus or body hair would seem to hit others' squick buttons.
Self-Fanservice: Although drawn in a cartoony style, the Warden is meant to be somewhat middle-aged, round-faced, and plain in the show. In fanart, he tends to skew a bit younger and even have muscles and a squared jaw at times.
Lord Stingray: In canon, he doesn't remove his mask and his body is flabby and not too impressive. But in fanart (especially adult-oriented art), he suddenly becomes ridiculously attractive and with muscles.
Some artists tone down Alice's muscles or her rougher features, and in some cases forget her bulge.
The Twins tend to wind up much more conventionally cute, to the point where some forgo their unibrows, though most artists consider it sacrilege to even think of removing those.
Jared can wind up taller, thinner, or with his head reduced some. Somewhat justified if he's being drawn in a more realistic style, although it still may be jarring for some fans.
Ship Mates: It isn't too much of a surprise to find Jared/Charise shipped alongside Warden/Mistress.
Ship-to-Ship Combat: The Warden alone can be a big cause of this in the fandom. There are viewers that will argue over whether he's better being paired off with Jared, the Mistress, Lord Stingray, Jailbot, or even himself. That's not even to get into the crack pairing of him and the Once-ler that sprung up, which has also incited divisive reactions on whether or not those who ship it are actually fans of the show. Alice is sometimes included in the shipping equation, but there are fans also content with the pairing being more one-sided on the Warden's part.
The Mistress is also a key player, as some either prefer her with the Warden, Lord Stingray, or Alice. Although both of the first two pairings were sunk in the season 3 premiere and the third option would be unrequited at most on Mistress' part, it doesn't stop some of the fans from going to war over which would be most canon and what the writers would "need" to make happen.
Squick: Alice banging The Mistress. It's so horrible, it even gets a reaction out of Gary.
Suspiciously Similar Song: In "Combaticus", the titular character's theme is clearly a parody of "Stone Cold" Steve Austin's theme music. The background music played while the Twins mourn his death is the song "Shenhua" from the game Shenmue, but done in a different key.
"The Trouble with Triples"' ending theme is a rearrangement of "Deshominisation" from the 1973 film Fantastic Planet (which was also visually referenced in the episode and in "Hot Chick").
Take That, Scrappy!: Although it's intentional as part of the gag with the character, there are those that see Fatty's humiliation and multiple deaths as enjoyable for punishing an obnoxious, loathsome character.
The Mistress being pushed around and made to feel useless by Stingray. Although she gets back at him by kicking him out of their room (actually the Warden's room that she'd stolen).
Those that despised the Twins saw the ending and scenes of them being beat up in "The Trouble with Triples" as one huge comeuppance for the characters never getting punished or humiliated (well, "Time Police part 2" aside...). But while there were fans relieved that its ending was seemingly not a "to be continued" after all, it also pissed off those who hated the Twins since it didn't permanently write the characters out.
Although not as huge of an example and the outcry died down, there were fans VERY baffled about the voice acting replacements for Charise and Bruce in "Stingstress" note although Sally Donovan started voicing Charise as early as her cameo in "Vacation". This was due to the original actors from "Ladies' Night" either retiring from voice acting or otherwise being unavailable. Regardless, most seem to have warmed to Sally Donovan as Charise since the episode (and she's continued the role into season 4), although Bruce's voice is still either seen as obnoxiously trying too hard to imitate the original or horrible but funny.
Ugly Cute: Jared is a short, squat middle-aged man with an oversized head, but it doesn't stop various fans from finding him adorable. Some of the inmates (particularly Ash) also receive this reception, along with the Twins.
Unfortunate Implications: Considering the show's very adult-oriented and runs on Black Comedy, grossouts, and gore, you're bound to find these somewhere. Below are some examples that are occasionally cited in particular (as it'd run too long if fans listed every thing).
In "Superbar", Jacknife steals a boat with a teenage girl and her parents in it. He kicks her parents out, and during his attempted getaway, he gives the girl a teddy bear he jacked from a seaside carnival game booth. The final scene of the episode shows the teenage girl talking to her friends about how a convict kicked her mom and her new husband off the boat and gave her a teddy bear. It all seems fine, until it ends with the girls screaming as Jacknife leers at them through the bedroom window...
Alice has received some controversy from time to time (and in negative reviews of the show), as it's felt she's too profane and a terrible stereotype of transgender women. The main issues seem to be that her bulge is focused on too often, and that some feel Warden's crush on her was playing her as a joke due to his initial (or continued note depending on how fans interpret his later behavior after seeing her exposed) ignorance of her genitalia. Although, some episodes do show those who misgender or spurn Alice to be in the wrong. What further provides the debate is that men (Warden aside) appear repulsed or frightened by her, and that she is depicted as sadistic and overbearing, forcing men into sexual acts with her. Still, these debates over whether or not her portrayal is transmisogynist or sexist never go too wellnote mainly, that if someone is transgender and feels offended by her or if they're transgender and don't mind her (or can enjoy her in spite of noted issues), the "No True Scotsman" fallacy gets invoked.
In addition, there's also the debate that while the Mistress came to enjoy it, that the sex Alice had with her was under false pretenses and was basically forced upon her. Although the more oft-cited reason for the twist being disliked is simply that Alice "got in the way" of the Warden's love.
While there were fans that either found the scene funny out of a sense of irony or that were horrified, there were fans that cheered on the Twins being raped in "Time Police part 2" out of the reason that the characters deserved it for being in Warden's way and for being "so gay". Yeah.
Ash is often the Butt Monkey of the inmates and bullied, but his fans are easier to count than most of the other guys'.
The Twins in the show are usually treated as ugly geeks or a nuisance, that is when other characters actually bother to notice them (It's worth noting Alice only really wanted to help them because she wanted a godbaby, and the other time only because she assumed Hunter was trying to "steal" her inmate boyfriend). Their fans say different. This is even lampshaded in "Triples" when the Twins lie to their brothers, claiming that they not only conquered Earth but are popular and that people call them "cool" and "Bad-A Mo-Effers".
Viewer Gender Confusion: Alice was this, full stop. Viewers argued over whether she was a transgender woman, a male drag queen, a transgender man, a woman who abused steroids, or that her bulge was just a sight gag and "not really there". Although season 2 clarified the matter, the Broken Base trope above describes the aftermath (hint: some fans did not take it very well AT ALL).
The Twins, oddly. Although consistently referred to as men in the show (Alice's confusion over the budding one in the "Warbuxx" episode aside), there were early fans that mistook them for women up until their first shirtless scene. There was also a guest on the "Hot Chick" commentary track who'd never seen the show before, that interrupted Karacas' commentary to ask "Are those two ugly girls?" during a scene with the characters. To add to that, even though both refer to each other as "Brother" and are both called "boys"/"sons", a fan will occasionally project that one might be a girl.
Peepers, one of the "Stars N Stripes" members in "Lord Stingray Crash Party". He's meant to be a teenage boy, but since Sally Donovan provided his voice, there were quite the fans confused over whether he was a boy or girl.
Then there's the case of Bird. The creators have always referred to Bird as "he" or as a male one, but that scene in "Time Police part 2" involving him getting pregnant and laying an egg made a bunch of fans think otherwise. Of course, strange events like that are business as usual for the show, and Bird's gender may be ambiguous or have changed just for that gag, or to go with the common answer, it was bird m-preg. There's also the matter of there being an Ultraprison Bird in "Ladies' Night", though less fans debate over that one being a female bird.
Christy Karacas' name is also known to evoke confusion for fans, to where they may at first think a woman is behind the show. It's worth noting however, that while "Christy" may seem a more feminine name to Americans, it's actually a rather masculine name in Greek- and Karacas happens to be of Greek descent.
Win Back The Crowd: Season 3, to some extent of success (although ratings-wise, the more vocally panned season 2 actually did better due to it being aired in the summer and had stable viewership numbers).