YMMV: The Boondocks

  • Adaptation Displacement: The original comic strip was displaced by the animated television series. It doesn't help that the overall tone and subject matter are very different, with the comics being more mundane, while the show is more outlandish.
  • Acceptable Targets: The show regularly takes shots at right-wing politics, but occasionally left-wing politics as well. And it also makes use of N-Word Privileges to satirize African-American culture, if not American culture as a whole.
  • Anvilicious: The comic strip was a vehicle for the political views of McGruder, though fortunately there was enough self-deprecating humor to balance it out.
    • The show has distinct political overtones as well, but is more subtle about them... usually.
    • "Freedomland" on the other hand makes no attempt to hide its "middle class is slavery" message.
  • Author Avatar: Some fans accuse Huey of being this (especially in the cartoon), although McGruder denies this and has stated that Huey's opinion isn't always his opinion.
  • Base Breaker
    • Uncle Ruckus. He's viewed as either the most awesome character in the series or an Overly Long Gag that has overstayed his welcome. "The Color Ruckus" has partially redeemed him in the eyes of the latter.
    • Same goes double for Colonel H. Stinkmeaner.
    • Granddad, due to Season 4's focus on him.
    • Some viewers couldn't forgive Sarah for the way she treated Tom in "Tom, Sarah and Usher" and "Pretty Boy Flizzy", even though she never actually cheats on him, and seemed to be sorry in the end.
  • Broken Base
    • Whether the show is a worthy adaptation of the comic, whether the show's use of more extreme language and situations works well as a satire (similar to the issues from which Chappelle's Show suffered), whether the show captures McGruder's style better than the comic, and whether the show should be seen as a positive African American production - as well as whether those who see it as negative are perceiving it correctly. Not quite as militant as some other broken bases, but it's still noticeable.
    • Reception is also somewhat split over when and where the series was at its best/worst - mostly between those who think the second series both improved its stride and found its particular comedic style in the second season, and those who think that the second season lost some of its earliest energy, symbolism and characterization. There's also a minor debate over whether the emphasis on the various characters was handled well and caused them to be more distinctive and endearing, or whether it was handled poorly and caused them to become too exaggerated and flanderized.
    • Even among the show's fans, there are those who consider the Martin Luther King episode to have overstepped the boundaries of good taste.
    • The base has splintered again over Season 4, partly because Aaron McGruder was not involved in its production in any way. Detractors say that the show accelerated the flanderization of the characters even more.
  • Crazy Awesome: There are several contenders: Bushido Brown, Ed Wuncler III and Gin Rummy, and Riley's (unnamed) art teacher from the first season all have qualities of the trope.
  • Crosses the Line Twice:
    • Uncle Ruckus does this every time he talks about black people. As an African American white supremacist with a severe case of Gonk (due to child abuse from his racist father), his very existence crosses the line about 3 times. Speaking crosses it a 4th time.
    • A Pimp Named Slickback does this every time he talks, period.
    • The entirety of the Catcher Freeman episode.
    • Luna's tragic background plunges straight through domestic abuse into the sort of absymal Woobie background one would expect of a Mary Sue: Bitch! This chicken is cold!!"
    • Then there is the Booty Warrior's Establishing Character Moment scene at the start of "Date With The Booty Warrior".
    • This song by Thugnificent.
  • Ear Worm:
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Caesar in the comic strip. Sadly, he was omitted from the cartoon because McGruder thought they couldn't find the right voice actor.
    • A Pimp Named Slickback and Stinkmeaner in the cartoon.
    • Tom Dubois
    • Grandmaster Bushido Brown
    • Ed, Rummy, and Cindy.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: Season 4, due to the things mentioned in Seasonal Rot below. For the broken part of the base, the show ended with "It's Goin Down".
  • Foe Yay: Huey and Ming have some moments in "The Red Ball".
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The Winston Jerome jokes about him being gay have strayed into this territory after Tyler Perry confessed that he was molested in his childhood.
  • Growing the Beard: The show doesn't really come into its own until season two (season one was pretty much middle-of-the-road. There were people who liked it and people who hated it), at which point the art and animation quality receive a considerable boost and the idiosyncrasies of the characters and oddball supporting cast members come into the limelight.
    • Season 4, which was somewhat rough without Aaron Mcgruder, starts to do this with "Freedom Ride or Die", where the quality takes an uptick, and cements it with "Grandad Dates a Kardashian" and "Freedomland" Which give focus to Huey and Riley, provide rather well done satire, both of which had been missing.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: In "Let's Nab Oprah", when Ed and Rummy mentioned that they were once in the US Army special forces, Riley quips that they should've been in the Special Olympics because of their stupidity. Ironically in the last episode "The New Black", Riley is forced to participate in the Special Olympics due to Goodlove and Granddad lying that he's mentally disabled.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Tom Dubois is not supposed to be Barack Obama. Yes, he is a successful, light-skinned black, highly liberal attorney with a bit of a nerdy loser side, and looks an awful lot like Obama. But the character was developed way before Obama became a national figure. McGruder apparently noticed this and took full advantage of it.
  • Ho Yay:
    • Ed Wuncler III and Gin Rummy. This was once lampshaded by Riley.
    • Uncle Ruckus and Jimmy Rebel.
      • Look at how hurt Grandad acts when Ruckus starts hanging out with Jimmy Rebel. They bicker like an old married couple as it is.
  • Idiot Plot: Purposely done in the "Nigga Moment" tetralogy, although the plot was based on the characters being ignorant rather than just stupid.
  • Iron Woobie: Huey during the course of "The Passion Of Uncle Ruckus" and "It's a Black President, Huey Freeman". He also counts in general considering the fact that his parents and grandmother are all dead, his grandfather constantly ignores him, his brother is constantly getting into trouble, and he is Surrounded by Idiots.
    • Uncle Ruckus' brothers, Darryl and Darrell who also suffered under their father and grandmother, albeit mentioning that Uncle Ruckus got it the worst, seem to be the most well-adjusted of the family. They also recognize the abuse their own father experienced, and realize while it doesn't really excuse some of his actions, take comfort in the belief that in some twisted way, he was raising them to realize the harshness of the world.
  • Jerkass Woobie
    • Uncle Ruckus in "The Color Ruckus".
    • Mister Ruckus himself, considering the abuse he suffered.
    • Gangstalicious in "The Story Of Gangstalicious, Part 2"
    • Riley has his moments of this, especially in "Riley Wuz Hear" and "Smoking With Cigarettes".
    • Luna has suffered every type of abuse possible, and just as she makes Heel-Face Turn for tormenting the Freemans, her friend Nicole unintentionally convinces her to blow herself up with the same grenade she threatened to use earlier when she was with Tom and Robert (who were tied up at the time).
  • Magnificent Bastard: Ed Wuncler Sr., that despicable genius.
  • Memetic Mutation: Has its own page.
    • "I sent that bitch a smiley face. Bitches love smiley faces."
    • "NIGGA DID I JUST CATCH YOU DOIN' X?!!"
    • "Did you just offer me... cheese?"
    • "WHAT'S GOOD, NYUKKA?"
  • Memetic Sex Goddess
    • Sarah Dubois.
    • Ebony Brown provides a hilarious Hello, Nurse! in-universe version: even Uncle Ruckus falls for her.
  • Minority Show Ghetto: A notable aversion, as the show proved to be quite a success with audiences, appealing beyond just the obvious black demographic.
  • Misaimed Fandom: The show as a whole can be considered this. A lot of people are unaware that The Boondocks is a satire.
    • There are actually people that view Uncle Ruckus as being in the right.
    • Don't even get started on the Youtube comments of the episode featuring Jimmy Rebel.
    • More apparent when you look at Riley's fanbase. Most of his fans don't realize that he is a parody of them - a wannabe hip-hop star.
  • Moe: Jazmine.
  • Mondegreen: Lampshaded in "Bitches To Rags".
    Thugnificent: Y'all send me stupid fuckin' messages online, but won't pay for my damn song? I hate y'all niggas, man. Hey, hey, Thugnificent, is it "Booty butt cheeks" or "Move them butt cheeks"? Nigga, who gives a fuck, it's a song about butt cheeks!
  • Moral Event Horizon
    • Lamilton's not exactly a child you want to babysit, but he crosses the line when he outright threatens to shoot Riley simply because he doesn't want to hang out with him.
    • Ed Wuncler Sr. crosses it when he gets his grandson and his best friend to set bombs in a populated building just to kill ONE man for the sole purpose of money, despite being rich enough to have connections to the president.
    • Uncle Ruckus trying to reinstate slavery. And succeeding with the Freeman family.
    • Eddie Jr. crosses it on "Freedomland" when he tries to chop Huey's foot off with an axe, showing himself to be just if not even more vile then Ed sr.
  • Never Live It Down: Granddad will never be allowed to forget about killing Stinkmeaner, neither by his crew nor the man himself. Averted with the law.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome:
    • The implied fight between Huey and Uncle Ruckus at the end of "... Or Die Trying".
    • There was also an unseen fight between Huey, Riley, Butch, and four other boys at the beginning of "A Date With The Booty Warrior".
  • One-Scene Wonder: Even bit characters in this series tend to be rather colorful, to say the least. A good example is Maybelline from "Wingmen", who only appears for about a minute but it ends up being one of the funniest minutes of the show. There's also the Hustler Preacher, who's only appeared in "Return of the King" and "Riley Wuz Here".
  • Painful Rhyme: "DOOM comes like a vacuum! 'Cuz death sucks and smells like a raccoon, or a baboon!"
  • Rooting for the Empire: In-universe example: In "Stinkmeaner: Begun the Clone War Has", Stinkmeaner's clone gets a large fanbase who support his Nigga Moment against Robert.
  • The Scrappy: Uncle Ruckus. Viewers who didn't find his racist antics to be funny anymore considered him to be very annoying.
    • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Many Uncle Ruckus-centered episodes didn't do much to develop his character outside of "comic relief bigot". "The Color Ruckus" changed that.
    • Take That, Scrappy!: When Ruckus' dad gives him a scathing speech about his origins, his personality, his entire being, some people felt sorry for him, many others cheered. Ruckus later returns the favor to his dad in the climax.
  • Seasonal Rot: Some people feel the fourth season was inferior. Aside from the show's creator not being involved, several voice actors had to be replaced or their characters Put on a Bus; characters like Ruckus and Sarah Dubois suffered sudden changes in characterization; and the new writers' experiment with a season-long arc focusing on Granddad. The season (and, so far, the series) ends with Granddad becoming a prostitute to get his debt cleared. Many fans of the earlier seasons were disappointed.
  • So Cool It's Awesome: Especially if you get all the inside jokes. Also, the fact that the season 3 premiere got over a million viewers.
  • Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped: As that page mentions, the entire series exists largely to drop the anvils on the black community: 1. Apathy to your lot in life is a self-fulfilling prophecy; 2. Society is allegedly structured to disadvantage members of certain groups, usually focusing on the black community, but occasionally others.
    • Martin Luther King's speech decrying the fact that the freedoms he fought so hard for are being taken for granted, even wasted, by the people on whose behalf he fought. Cartoon Network released an official statement in defense of it, in fact.
    "We think Aaron McGruder came up with a thought-provoking way of not only showing Dr. King's bravery but also of reminding us of what he stood and fought for, and why even today, it is important for all of us to remember that and to continue to take action."
    • Huey calling out the Common Nonsense Jury in "The Trial of R. Kelly".
      Huey: "What the hell is wrong with you people?! Every famous nigga that gets arrested is not Nelson Mandela! Yes, the government conspires to put a lot of innocent black men in jail on fallacious charges, but R. Kelly is not one of those men. We all know the nigga can sing, but what happened to standards?! What happened to bare minimums?! You a fan of R.Kelly? You wanna help R. Kelly? Then get some counseling for R. Kelly! Introduce him to some older women! Hide his camcorder! But don't pretend like the man is a hero!" (Beat) "...and stop the damn dancing! Act like you got some God damn sense, people!"
    • "The Itis".
      Huey: Granddad, look what you did to the community.
      Granddad: It's not that bad.
      Huey: Not that bad? This place used to sit between a coffee shop and a day spa. Now there's a liquor store and a damn Foot Locker. This food is destructive.
      Granddad: This food is your culture!
      Huey: Then the culture is destructive!
    • "Freedomland", while noted under Anvilicious for its lack of subtlety, is rather poignant during the recession.
  • Shipping: Many people think that Huey/Jazmine and Riley/Cindy would make great couples. Though of course there's nothing beyond subtle implications of one-sided crushes, and Huey and Riley, being little kids after all, seem to be Oblivious to Love.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song
    • Gangstalicious' freestyle in "Thank You for Not Snitching" is this for MF DOOM's "Rap Snitch Knishes."
    • And "Homies Over Hoes" sounds a lot like D4L's "Laffy Taffy."
    • Uncle Ruckus' theme song is sourced from Jabba's theme from Star Wars.
    • Sgt. Gudda's "Crank That Artichoke" is pretty clearly meant to be a take-off of "Crank That" by Soulja Boy.
  • Tear Jerker: Has its own page.
    • Ruckus' origins. Lampshaded by the Freeman family's reactions.
    • The end of "Riley Wuz Hear", which is actually an in-universe example as well.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: While both the show and the strip have always been critically acclaimed, there are numerous shifts that have caused division in the fanbase.
    • Although the strip didn't become widely known until it started regularly doing political commentary, there are some fans who feel that the shift to politics was detrimental to the strip. Those fans feel that originally, the appeal of the strip was it's large cast of characters and most of the humor was derived from their interactions. They say that when the strip changed, the cast was reduced to just Huey and Caesar, and a lot of the strips boiled down to just Huey watching the news.
    • The differences between the strip and the show cause arguments due to the social commentary being more indirect and not as frequent, along with several changes to the personalities of the characters.
    • Finally, some fans hold the first season higher than the rest of the series, due to the show becoming Denser and Wackier, the social commentary taking a backseat to more general plots, and Huey being Demoted to Extra and losing a lot of his passion in general.
    • Some people have been this way about season 4 since Aaron McGruder no longer works on the show, not to mention the shift in focus being on Granddad.
  • This Is Your Premise on Drugs: Huey is Huey Newton on lithium.
  • Too Cool to Live: Bushido Brown.
  • What an Idiot: Grandad in "Good Times", who keeps taking Ed Wuncler, Jr.'s deals among other things to try and pay back his debt, when it actually drives him further into it.
  • Win the Crowd: Subverted; the season two episodes involving BET were supposed to be this to angry fans who were pissed off at the tonal change in adapting the strip to animation, but Adult Swim pussied out and banned them.
  • The Woobie:
    • Jazmine, especially in "The Block is Hot".
    • This runs in the family, as her father Tom also frequently qualifies for this.
    • Leonard, poor guy works non-stop at Wendy's to pay for Thugnificent's mansion.
  • Woolseyism: For obvious reasons, most of the humor was adapted in many foreign-dubbed versions:
    • The Mexican Spanish dub has a weird approach on this: While they avoided the Animation Age Ghetto by keeping the original profanity intact (and sometimes even adding extra profanity), on the other hand and due to an unexpected limitation of the Spanish language, the slur Nigger is translated as Negro (literally "Black" as both "Black color" or "Black people"). Normally the word Negro is not an insult by default in Mexico and many Spanish-speaking countries (though "negro" was once used in America as an adjective for black people and it was Fair for Its Day, but now it's not), and it's only an insult when you add an adjective on it. It's not the same saying in Spanish "Eres un Negro" (You're a Black guy) than saying "Eres un Maldito Negro" (You're a Damn Black guy) which is the closest thing to saying Nigger in Spanish. Sometimes it works well, sometimes it doesn't.
    • The Japanese dub, on the other hand, avoids this, out for necessity, since many of the American slang and ethnic slurs used in the original English version remains untranslated from English, causing sometimes many characters to speak normally in Japanese and dropping N-Bombs in English. Basically, the Japanese dub is the inverted version of many Western fansubs and some dubs regarding keeping many of the original terminology untranslated.