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The Real Spoofbusters

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Stock Parodies of the Ghostbusters.

This trope has been Launched!
Proposed By:
LavonPapillon1 on Nov 8th 2018 at 2:08:53 PM
Last Edited By:
LavonPapillon1 on Jan 18th 2019 at 10:02:26 AM
Name Space: Main
Page Type: trope

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tmnt2012_ghostbusters.png
Who you gonna call?

For the longest time, the study, capture and exorcism of ghosts have often been seen not as a Science Fiction or even Science Fantasy career, so much as a job populated entirely by either consecrated members of the Vatican or freelance warlocks paid for their banishments.

And then Slovak-Canadian film producer and director Ivan Reitman pitched a pro-Reaganomic Horror Comedy film set to be released in 1984. That film... was Ghostbusters. The rest is history.

To see a Real Spoofbusternote , a specific criteria is meant to be met. They often wear jumpsuits, signifying that their profession is just that; a profession, similar to an electrician or a plumber.

While for the longest time combating supernatural phenomena used either magical (enchanted swords, chicken's feet, talismans) or religion implements (holy water, crucifix, sacred rights), the Spoofbuster instead forgoes older superstitions favor of the knowledge and skill of a Science Hero. Geiger-counters that react to ectoplasm, chemical isotopes that make demons violently ill, and of course a bootleg proton-pack; a (probably unlicensed) nuclear accelerator strapped to their backs similar to a backpack. They can come in many settings; they can suck up the ghosts like a vacuum, spray out anti-ectoplasmic solutions, shoot streams of energy that can explode every molecule in your body at the speed of light should they be crossed and a dozen other contrived doo-dads and what-have-you's to get the job done.

Often crosses over with the Demon Slaying, Hunter of Monsters, Occult Detectives and other fields of Paranormal Investigation.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

     Anime and Manga 
  • Brief from Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt wears a green jumpsuit and carries around a backpack that doubles as a vacuum cleaner throughout most of the series. The shout-out is intentional.
  • A scene example appears in Shimoneta, in which after becoming a nymphomaniac, Anna Nishikinomiya starts to chase Tanukichi Okuma wanting his male member with diverse objects, one of them a vacuum cleaner that uses as backpack trying to "absorb" Tanukichi's stuff (while he clings to a pipe outside the building).
  • Episode 9 of the Pop Team Epic anime features a brief scene of Pipimi and Popuko wearing familiar suits and backpacks to suck away a gang of rowdy teens.

    Films — Animation 
  • Daffy Duck's Quackbusters is a Compilation Movie which has Daffy inherit a fortune with the stipulation that he must use it for goodwill. When he doesn't, his millionaire benefactor returns to haunt him, which kicks off the premise of the movie: Daffy hiring fellow Looney Tunes to help him get rid of ghosts and monsters.

    Video Games 
  • In the Luigi's Mansion games, Luigi (of the famous Super Mario Bros.) winds up having to hunt ghosts in-spite of his cowardliness in a massive haunted mansion (which was a trap for him and Mario) with the help of Professor E. Gadd and his patented Poltergust 3000, a back-strapped vacuum designed to suck-up ghosts of all-shapes and sizes.
  • The Sims 3 added the "ghost hunter" career with it's "ambitions". Ghost hunters have to capture or exorcise ghosts using various gadgets.
  • The Yo-kai Watch Blasters spin-off of the Yo-Kai Watch video game series is a beat 'em up game with heavy references to the Ghostbusters series. So heavy, it had to actually be modified in the Western release to tone them down for copyright reasons. The original Japanese name was Yo-kai Watch Busters, Jibanyan and Komasan had Ghostbuster-like jumpsuits in their Blaster forms, and Whismellowman, named Whisped Cream in the dub and looking more kaiju-like, was originally a Stay Puft Marshmallow Man parody.
  • The Arcade Game Tumblepop is all about this: two partners travel together all over the world chasing ghosts and monsters with their vacuums.

    Western Animation 
  • In the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012) episode "End Times", Donatello builds the team a set of ghost-fighting equipment similar to the proton pack in order to combat Kavaxas and his hoard of evil spirits spilling out from the Netherworld.
  • In the Johnny Bravo episode "Hunted", Johnny is kicked out his own attic when he tries taking a rare comic in there by a ghost haunting it. When he gets Carl's help, they dress in uniforms Carl made from his mom's dress that he claims are designed for most-hunting, being equipped with strap-on particle beams. Johnny comments how they don't exactly look like the same guys in the movie.
  • Danny Phantom: In "The Million Dollar Ghost", Danny encounters groups of ghost hunters that parody well-known franchises. One pair are known as "The Extreme Ghostbreakers", parodying Extreme Ghostbusters.
  • In the Muppet Babies (1984) episode, "Bug-Busting Babies", Gonzo leads the babies into a team called the Bug Busters to catch the bug messing up Scooter's computer program. The episode also spoofs the Ray Parker Jr song from the 1984 movie, and features Bug Busters and a car similar to the Ghostbusters and their Ecto-1.
  • The Tiny Toons Halloween special "Tiny Toons' Night Ghoulery" has Furrball dress up in full Ghostbusters gear to take on the ghost of Sneezer.
  • The Spooktacular New Adventures of Casper has a pair of faux Ghostbusters to do the "Who you gonna call? ...someone else" bit from the movie.
  • Histeria! had a Song Parody of the Ghostbusters theme called "Trust Buster", the nickname Teddy Roosevelt earned for breaking up big business at the turn of the 20th Century. The kids wear jumpsuits; Teddy wears a proton pack and blasts Corrupt Corporate Executives with green lasers.
  • In The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, this is how the title characters became friends, with Billy donning a proton pack and brown jumpsuit and catching Grim in a muon trap.
  • Robot Chicken has MythBusters' Jamie and Adam investigate the myth of whether or not masturbation causes blindness by driving to a kid's house in Ecto-1 and catching him like a ghost.
  • The brown jumpsuit-clad Ghost Harassers, a parody of Ghost Hunters, appear as a still image in a brief TV ad on Gravity Falls.


Feedback: 23 replies

Nov 8th 2018 at 2:15:35 PM

  • Danny Phantom: In "The Million Dollar Ghost", Danny encounters groups of ghost hunters that parody well-known franchises. One pair are known as "The Extreme Ghostbreakers", parodying Extreme Ghostbusters.

Nov 8th 2018 at 2:35:13 PM

  • Brief from Panty And Stocking With Garterbelt wears a green jumpsuit and carries around a backpack that doubles as a vacuum cleaner throughout most of the series. The shoutout is intentional.

Nov 9th 2018 at 1:57:46 AM

  • The Sims 3 added the "ghost hunter" career with it's "ambitions". Ghost hunters have to capture or exorcise ghosts using various gadgets.

Nov 9th 2018 at 6:57:43 AM

Anime and Manga:

  • A scene example appears in Shimoneta, in which after becoming a nymphomaniac, Anna Nishikinomiya starts to chase Tanukichi Okuma wanting his male member with diverse objects, one of them a vacuum cleaner that uses as backpack trying to "absorb" Tanukichi's stuff (while he clings to a pipe outside the building).

Nov 9th 2018 at 7:02:03 AM

The Yokai Watch Blasters spin-off of the Yokai Watch video game series is a beat 'em up game with heavy references to the Ghostbusters series. So heavy, it had to actually be modified in the Western release to tone them down for copyright reasons. The original Japanese name was Yo-kai Watch Busters, Jibanyan and Komasan had Ghostbuster-like jumpsuits in their Blaster forms, and Whismellowman, named Whisped Cream in the dub and looking more kaiju-like, was originally a Stay Puft Marshmallow Man parody.

Nov 9th 2018 at 10:32:38 AM

I like The Spoofbusters. I myself was trying to think of something witty using the Ghostbusters name, so I appreciate this one.

Nov 10th 2018 at 8:30:30 AM

The Yokai Watch Busters (not Blasters) would be a good trope image.

Nov 12th 2018 at 4:52:59 PM

Alt title TheRealSpoofbusters? The "real" is meaningless, but the connection helps establish that it's not about any other kind of 'busters.

Nov 12th 2018 at 5:54:28 PM

^ Not bad, but could make people think it's specific to The Real Ghostbusters rather than just Ghostbusters in general.

Nov 13th 2018 at 5:38:24 AM

Well, that's why it's an alt title, but I don't know if that's any more of a possibility than people assuming this can apply to any kind of parody company with 'Busters in the name.

Nov 13th 2018 at 1:41:01 AM

"The Spoofbusters" makes me think of Myth Busters parodies, so it's probably too ambiguous. The Real Spoofbusters would be more indicative that it refers to Ghostbusters, and, honestly, to an outside viewer, "Ghostbusters" and "Real Ghostbusters" are pretty synonymous, anyway.

Nov 14th 2018 at 5:10:16 PM

I like the "The Real" addition. I think I'll use that. Also, I was thinking of changing it from "Spoofbuster" to "Tropebuster." It is just more comfortable to say and it sounds just slightly closer to "Ghostbuster", thus calling it "The Real Tropebusters".

To those of you who think that having a non-index trope page have "trope" in its title, I refer you to The Scottish Trope.

Nov 14th 2018 at 6:08:03 PM

I don't know though, it's less clear about what the page is about than the current title and sounds more like a Just For Fun page with a TV Tropes Ghostbuster parody....

Nov 14th 2018 at 10:05:56 PM

You forgot to change "Spoofbuster" into a plural, and I think using "Trope" as a placeholder is discouraged.

Nov 16th 2018 at 3:29:32 AM

^^^ From Naming A Trope:

"Don't use the word "trope" as a placeholder. Trope is a real word and it has real meaning, and it makes about as much sense to use that as to use the word pie, less sense even, and since most articles are inherently about tropes in the first place, there's even less to help indicate that this is being used as a placeholder. Basically, if it's not a form of Playing with a Trope, use "X" or some other appropriate placeholder term."

Nov 26th 2018 at 6:35:33 AM

Video Games:

  • The Arcade Game Tumblepop is all about this: two partners travel together all over the world chasing ghosts and monsters with their vacuums.

Dec 5th 2018 at 9:54:36 PM

With only nine examples to boot, I guess this is WAY too specific.

Dec 6th 2018 at 3:11:46 AM

I think you mean Too Specific To Trope. I feel like it's not, though — I couldn't come up with many off the top of my head, but I'm pretty sure they're out there. Fortunately Google has a solution for that — there's a Ghostbusters wiki and they have their own article for almost this topic. A lot of of them are just shout-outs, but there should still be a few more spoofs to sort out.

So that should help. I'll go through and try and put together a few more examples when I get some more time.

Dec 6th 2018 at 5:37:59 AM

Western Animation

  • In the Muppet Babies 1984 episode, "Bug-Busting Babies", Gonzo leads the babies into a team called the Bug Busters to catch the bug messing up Scooter's computer program. The episode also spoofs the Ray Parker Jr song from the 1984 movie, and features Bug Busters and a car similar to the Ghostbusters and their Ecto-1.

Dec 6th 2018 at 9:22:08 PM

More examples from the wiki, from the film and TV sections.

Anime & Manga

  • Panty And Stocking With Garterbelt has the character brief, a "paranormal investigator" who wears a green jumpsuit and backpack, although the backpack is attached to a scanner rather than a gun. Title characters Panty and Stocking are mostly the ones fight the series' "Ghosts" — timid normal Brief helps when he can.

Film - Live-Action

  • Be Kind Rewind has a meta example where one of the "Sweded" amateur remake movies is Ghostbusters. Sigourney Weaver cameos as a bailiff during the court case which sees the Sweded movies destroyed.

Western Animation

  • Daffy Ducks Quackbusters is a Compilation Movie which has Daffy inherit a fortune with the stipulation that he must use it for goodwill. When he doesn't, his millionaire benefactor returns to haunt him, which kicks off the premise of the movie: Daffy hiring fellow Looney Tunes to help him get rid of ghosts and monsters.
  • The Tiny Toons Halloween special "Tiny Toons' Night Ghoulery" has Furrball dress up in full Ghostbusters gear to take on the ghost of Sneezer.
  • The Spooktacular New Adventures Of Casper has a pair of faux Ghostbusters to do the "Who you gonna call? ...someone else" bit from the movie.
  • Histeria had a Song Parody of the Ghostbusters theme called "Trust Buster", the nickname Teddy Roosevelt earned for breaking up big business at the turn of the 20th Century. The kids wear jumpsuits; Teddy wears a proton pack and blasts Corrupt Corporate Executives with green lasers.
  • In The Grim Adventures Of Billy And Mandy, this is how the title characters became friends, with Billy donning a proton pack and brown jumpsuit and catching Grim in a muon trap.
  • Robot Chicken has Myth Busters' Jamie and Adam investigate the myth of whether or not masturbation causes blindness by driving to a kid's house in Ecto-1 and catching him like a ghost.
  • The brown jumpsuit-clad Ghost Harassers, a parody of Ghost Hunters, appear as a still image in a brief TV ad on Gravity Falls.

Dan Aykroyd did a couple of cameos as Ray Stantz/not quite Ray Stantz. Not sure if those would count for this trope or if they're just references.

  • Casper has a few cameos from characters who just can't handle Casper's uncles. One of them is Dan Aykroyd, apparently as the actual Ray Stantz. He gets thrown out of the house, down the front steps before running away.
    Ray: Who ya gonna call? ...someone else!
  • In The Nanny episode "Sunday in the Park with Fran", Dan Aykroyd plays a refrigerator repairman from a company called Frostbusters.

Others that sound like they might fit but which I haven't looked up yet:

The wiki says Ben 10's Plumbers use weapons to suck in aliens the way the Ghosbusters do ghosts, but I haven't seen the show so I'm not sure how direct the similarities really are.

Dec 26th 2018 at 11:13:42 AM

  • Episode 9 of the Pop Team Epic anime features a brief scene of Pipimi and Popuko wearing familiar suits and backpacks to suck away a gang of rowdy teens.

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