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Main characters

    Jeremy Duncan 
  • Big Eater: Jeremy, like many teenage males. His friends, too, if the "All You Can Eat" buffet owner's closing shop as soon as he sees the gang is any indication.
    • He and Hector are even shown to be capable of unhinging their jaws in order to swallow a giant burger whole, wondering why the girls freak out.
    • In one strip, he literally inhales an entire table full of food.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: Jeremy gets good grades and is fairly athletic as well. He’s very lazy though, able to sprawl out on the couch contorts his form in extreme ways. One time he was filled with horror at realizing that a high test score would mean his parents would start expecting more of him.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Jeremy is blond and a good person at heart most of the time, him being a teenager after all.
  • Heavy Sleeper: Jeremy would sleep until noon if his parents didn't wake him up. One strip actually had Connie feed, clothe, and drive him to school while he was sleeping.
  • Hidden Depths: One Sunday strip has Jeremy, in a conversation with Hector, express a desire to join the Peace Corps after high school...though he immediately changes the subject once Connie enters the room.
  • Human Notepad: Jeremy tends to write on himself a lot, to the point that Connie once called him a "walking Post-It note". The cover of the compilation Rude, Crude, and Tattooed even has him doodling all over his own skin.
  • The Illegible: In one comic, Walt reads Jeremy's shopping list and comes up with "lugnuts, musk ox, and sardine bras"note .
  • It's All About Me: Part and parcel of being a teenager is Jeremy's firm conviction that the entire world exists solely to humour him.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Purple flannel shirt jacket over a black t-shirt, jeans and white sneakers is his signature style. In fact, it's his only style besides an obscure band logo t-shirt with boxers for casual wear.
  • Not a Morning Person: Jeremy loves to sleep. The longer and later, the better.
  • Open Mouth, Insert Foot: Frequently when he's arguing about something with Sara.
  • Sucks at Dancing: Jeremy is so bad at dancing that his girlfriend Sara advises him to "dance like everyone is watching". This was later used as the title of one of the collections. One time when he was showing his moves to Hector, he was told he looked like he was "milking a kangaroo".
  • Teens Are Short: Although Jeremy is tall for his age, his driver's license says he’s 5’11.
  • Theme Naming: Jeremy and Chad are named for the musical duo Chad & Jeremy. Both Walt and Connie blame the other for such a ridiculous idea.

    Connie Duncan 
Jeremy's mom. She used to work as a child psychologist, but after the first few years seems to have become a full-time homemaker.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: She sometimes has this reaction to Jeremy's antics. One strip has Jeremy asking to borrow some of Walt's clothes to wear to school...only to reveal that he and Hector are celebrating "Geek Day." Cue an exasperated Walt and Connie bursting out laughing.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: When she chaperoned Jeremy's class field trip, she showed all the girls in the class his baby pictures.
  • Improbably Predictable: Jeremy comes down for breakfast with a stack of cards, and answers each of his mother's questions ("Orange juice? Eggs?") with the next card. Finally she insists, "I am not that predictable!" and he reveals the card which reads, "Wanna bet?"
  • I Was Quite a Looker: One of the early strips had Jeremy look through a scrapbook and discover, with total shock: "My mom used to be a babe!"
  • Parental Hypocrisy: One set of strips has Connie ground Jeremy when he lets it slip that he and his friends are planning to play beer pong. Later, when Connie is ranting to Walt about it, Walt casually quips that she did the same exact thing at Jeremy's age, causing Connie to sheepishly grumble "I knew I should have hidden my trophies better!"
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Jeremy's parents are this, much to his chagrin. Even their attempts to censor what music he listens to were dropped when they realized how tame it was.
  • Technologically Blind Elders: Connie and Walt tend to be pretty clueless when it comes to technology, much to the perpetual embarrassment of their son.

    Walter "Walt" Duncan 
Jeremy's dad. He works as an orthodontist.
  • Embarrassing Tattoo: The peace symbol on Walt's butt.
    Connie: That peace sign is as big as a stop sign now.
  • Formerly Fit: Walt played varsity basketball in high school and used to be an absolute beanpole. These days he's overweight and gets exhausted and has his joints ache while attempting to play basketball with Jeremy in the driveway.
  • Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow: Walt used to have a full head of hair, as seen in some flashbacks and old photos. Raising two teenage boys seems to have had something to do with his hair loss.
  • I Was Quite a Fashion Victim: Jeremy asks his dad what he was like at 15. Apparently, he had a large poofy afro, bell-bottom pants, ridiculously tacky jacket and shirt, and had braces and granny glasses. Oh, and he played the clarinet. The image scares Jeremy enough it gets rid of his hiccups.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Walt is almost never seen in anything but a white shirt, black vest, and glasses.
  • Parental Hypocrisy: Like Connie, he's prone to it sometimes. One notable example is when Walt took offense to the music Jeremy listened to, declaring that he was tired of lyrics that were about nothing except "drugs and sex." Cue Jeremy name-dropping various songs by artists such as The Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix, to which Walt retorts "Hey, that's different! Those are classics!"
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Jeremy's parents are this, much to his chagrin. Even their attempts to censor what music he listens to were dropped when they realized how tame it was.
  • Technologically Blind Elders: Connie and Walt tend to be pretty clueless when it comes to technology, much to the perpetual embarrassment of their son.
  • Totally Radical: Jeremy had to teach his dad not to say "What's up, dood?" Unfortunately, though he could pronounce "Whatup, dude?" (relatively in use at time of publishing), he had no idea what it meant.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Walt is shown as bald and cartoonishly obese, while his wife is much thinner and not altogether unattractive, having a body type resembling the teenage girls of the comic. This is actually lampshaded by Sara who comments "Isn't weird how your Mom and I have like identical bodies?" (Cue the awkward moment) Connie's still not gorgeous given the art style, but it's a notable difference over Walt.

    Hector Garcia 
Jeremy's best friend and a guitarist/vocalist in their band. He is Hispanic and has a large family.
  • Big Beautiful Man: Hector finds himself as one of these after getting his fashion overhaul by Brittany and her friends; modern hairstyle, beard, contacts, new wardrobe, etc. He suddenly gets a lot more attention from girls, much to Jeremy's jealousy.
  • Big Eater: Like Jeremy, Hector is capable of unhinging his jaw in order to swallow a giant burger whole, wondering why the girls freak out.
  • The Big Guy: Hector and Jeremy are about the same height (if Jeremy isn't slouching), but Hector's a lot bulkier.
  • Blind Without 'Em: Hector had glasses for the first decade or so of the comic, but then got a makeover from the Posse. Since then he wears contacts.
  • The Glasses Gotta Go: He's worn contacts instead since his makeover.
  • Likes Older Women: Hector is attracted to middle-aged women.
  • Spontaneous Mustache: Hector is able to grow facial hair by concentrating for a short time, which is a cause of jealousy from Jeremy whose inability to grow noticeable facial hair is a Running Gag.

    Sara Toomey 
Jeremy's on-again, off-again girlfriend.
  • All Women Love Shoes: One Sunday strip has her reorganizing her bedroom to hold all her clothes and shoes, while she moves her bed into the closet.
  • Ambiguously Jewish: In one strip she mentions "Temple" which usually refers to a Reform synagogue in the US.
  • Meganekko: She normally wears contacts, but in one strip had to wear her glasses. Jeremy was visibly into it.
  • Psmith Psyndrome: Sara can tell when someone is saying her name with an 'H' on the end.
  • The Unfair Sex: Invoked. Sara has regularly broken up with Jeremy on a whim, gotten mad at him for dating other women afterwards ("When I said we [should see other people], I meant me!") yelled at him for innocuous comments or even things he's never done, and is generally rather flippant about his emotions, while the absolute worst thing we've seen Jeremy do is call her a skank. Of corse, Sara is a hormonal teenage girl, so while it's unfair from a storytelling standpoint, it's by no means inaccurate.

Jeremy's other best friend. As his name indicates, has metal attached to his head in almost every possible way, and is covered in tattoos.
  • All Drummers Are Animals: He's the drummer of Jeremy's band and is initially characterized as a short-tempered party animal.
  • Braces of Orthodontic Overkill: Body-modification fan Pierce soon came to love these, when Jeremy's dad (not a Depraved Dentist) called it "Getting your smile pierced."
  • Chronic Pet Killer: Played for Laughs in one comic where Pierce comes back with some food to find his pet mayfly dead. Jeremy lampshades that this may be why most people don't keep mayflies, as he and Pierce walk past a row of tiny coffins.note  Averted with his other pets.
  • Embarrassing Hobby: Pierce is secretly a scrapbooker and spends a lot of time desperately hiding the fact.
  • Freaky Fashion, Mild Mind: Not so much mild as "nice but crazy".
  • Hidden Depths: Despite his seemingly violent tendencies, Pierce is an animal lover, and frequently donates money to animal shelters. Jeremy once described him as "face of silver, heart of gold".
  • Human Notepad: Taken Up to Eleven with Pierce, who tattoos class notes on himself. In one strip, it's revealed he has the periodic table tattooed in his armpit.
  • Invisible Parents: His parents have never been seen, except for a framed photo of his mom in one strip.
  • Meaningful Name: Pierce has a body full of piercings.
  • Only One Name: His last name is never revealed.

Supporting cast and others

    Timothy "Tim" Olsen 
The bass player in Jeremy and Hector's band.
  • Blinding Bangs: Ironically, the ONLY hair he has on his head covers his eyes. The rest is shaved.
  • Satellite Character: Doesn't show up in many strips that aren't about band practice.
  • Shrinking Violet: Tim is relatively shy compared to his friends, and often hides behind his hair.

Pierce's girlfriend and Sara's friend.
  • Punctuation Shaker: Her real name is Dionne. She started doing the "apostrophe thing" in 7th grade.

Hector's former girlfriend.
  • Straw Vegetarian: She frequently said "meat is murder" whenever she saw Jeremy eating a hamburger, and one time convinced him and Hector to help her release tens of thousands of crickets in the school.

  • Telecom Tree: We don't see the actual tree but Pierce calculates that in order to get 700 people to turn up to his Wild Teen Party he has to inform exactly one person (Brittany) and let the word spread. It works.

A student who is obsessed with getting the perfect GPA and test scores.
  • Deal with the Devil: One strip implies she sold her soul for a 4.3 GPA.
  • Go-Getter Girl: She's an extreme overachiever, willing to do anything for that extra boost to her college applications.
  • Must Have Caffeine: Phoebe may well be the embodiment of the trope. She lists "caffeine" as her religion when she applies for a job at Fourbucks Coffee, and has an espresso machine in her locker. In one strip she's carrying a latte as big as herself down the hallway with a dolly, and in another, Jeremy taps her on the shoulder to ask her something and she hits the ceiling - literally - in shock, having drunk more than usual for finals.

    The Posse 
  • The Fashionista: All three of them are obsessed with their appearances, and they're who Jeremy turned to when Hector wanted a makeover.
  • Girl Posse: Most characters call them "The Posse" rather than their actual names.
  • Theme Naming: Zuma, Redondo, and LaJolla are all named after beaches in southern California. Zuma's last name is even "Beech".

  • The Dividual: They're only physically separated when they HAVE to be (such as separate classes), and have been seen literally contorting and stretching superhumanly to be together even then. During a temporary breakup the others were literally unable to call them by their separate names, as in it caused Jeremy physical pain to do so.
  • Portmanteau Couple Name: In one strip where they temporarily break up, the other characters can't pronounce their names separately, saying "Richand Amy" or "Rich Andamy." The mere attempt causes physical pain.
  • Sickening Sweethearts: Richandamy are apparently based on a real couple from the authors' lives, who appear to have achieved some kind of symbiosis and seem locked in a permanent embrace. The other characters' attitude towards them alternates between a strange sort of admiration and utter disbelief.
    • One time when they had different classes at the same time, they treated it like a tearful farewell, despite being able to get back together in less than an hour.
  • Yandere Couple: A downplayed and Played for Laughs example. While Richandamy don't demonstrate the psychosis traditionally associated with yanderes, the other characters find themselves alternatively bemused or disturbed by the obsessive level of devotion they show one another.

Pretty much all of these characters have developed Chuck Cunningham Syndrome in recent years.

Chad Duncan

Jeremy's older and successful brother.
  • The Ace: Often portrayed as better than Jeremy at everything, from academics to sports. On some visits, Jeremy can't wait till he leaves.
  • Always Someone Better: What drives most of Jeremy's resentment of him.
  • The Ghost: Doesn't appear unless he's home from college, except the one time his family visited him there.
  • Put on the Bus: Hasn't appeared much in recent years. Presumably he's still at college.
  • Theme Naming: Jeremy and Chad are named for the musical duo Chad & Jeremy. Both Walt and Connie blame the other for such a ridiculous idea.

Sara's Dad

Albert Tang

A classmate of Jeremy's, who shares the same birthday. He once asked out Sara, but has fallen out of focus in recent years.
  • Nice Guy: Sara accepted his asking her to the winter dance, since he gave her a rose and a love note, unlike Jeremy's plan to dress up in a gorilla suit.


The daughter of one of Walt's colleagues, Jeremy had a fling with her one year when he and Sara were broken up.



  • Straight Gay: In his first appearance, he mentioned that he's gay, but it's never mentioned again. He hasn't had that many appearances overall.
    Jeremy: Wow that outfit looks so gay!
    Billy: But I am gay. So...?
    Jeremy: No, no, like your outfit is gay. It's gay. Lame, I guess.


A girl Hector met at the Battle of the Bands and briefly dated in the strip's early years.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: She was so clingy Jeremy called her a "parasite". Hector agrees, but says it was nice that she was his parasite.
  • Poisonous Friend: She drove a wedge between Hector and Jeremy, and was pretty toxic to Hector.


The former drummer of Jeremy's band, replaced by Pierce when he quit. Hasn't appeared since.