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Comic Book / Kid Paddle

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Kid Paddle is a Franco-Belgian comic by Midam (Michel Ledent) about ten-year-old fan of Video Games, films and general two-dimensional violence, the titular character Kid Paddle. Most of the one-page gags focus on the natural hostility between Kid and his Dad, Kid and his sister Carole, Kid and his Sadist Teacher, Kid and the grumpy arcade owner or Kid and the game he's playing at the moment.

It got a spinoff named Game Over focusing on The Many Deaths of You starring the Little Barbarian, the much-abused protagonist of Kid's games.

It also got a Belgian-French-Canadian animated series produced by now-defunct Quebec animation studio Spectra Animation (Fred's Head, Toopy and Binoo), which aired on Teletoon for 2 seasons and 52 episodes from 2003 to 2006.


Kid Paddle provides examples of:

  • Aerith and Bob: There are characters with normal names such as Carole and Horace, and then there's Kid and Big Bang whose names aren't implied to be nicknames.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Kid view his dad like this mostly because he is lamer than his over expectation of him. There is however one gag where his dad will be caught in a really awkward situation when Carol's friend moves in which actually make Kid appreciate his dad more.
  • Amusing Injuries: Horace is always ending up in the hospital with ridiculously implausible injuries.
  • Animated Adaptation: The comic was adapted into a Franco-Belgian-Canadian co-produced animated series back in 2003 and lasted 52 episodes before going on an indefinite hiatus.
  • Author Avatar: The design of Kid's nameless blond friend from the early comic is based on Midam.
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  • Became Their Own Antithesis: What Kid fears would happen if his father and his sister reversed his brain in one strip.
  • Blind Without 'Em: Kid's friend Horace and Big Bang have severe myopia, the latter once confused the skinny pink princess in the game with the 300 pounds torturers because his glasses weren't adjusted correctly.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: In early albums, Kid was often seen with an unnamed blond-haired boy. He probably disappears because unlike Horace and Big, he had no particular personality.
  • Crazy-Prepared: In preparation for a marathon gaming session, Kid and friends set up soda bottle IV drips to avoid having to drink and a gas-powered generator in case the power runs out.
  • Creepy Child: Kid has his moments, which is only natural given his tastes in fiction.
  • Daydream Surprise: Mostly involving his father suddenly turning out to be James Bond or Rambo instead of, well, what he usually is.
  • Deep-Immersion Gaming: Very often. Justified in some strip were it is virtual simulation.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: The first album features Kid playing real '90s video games like Aladdin or Tetris, because those were taken from the time Kid Paddle was a a comic meant to accompany Spirou's video game review column. Later comics feature fictional games.
  • Fan Boy: Kid and his friends Big Bang and Horace are fan of gore.
  • Fictional Video Game: The Little Barbarian is the game Kid is most often seen playing. It even got its own Spin-Off series, aptly titled Game Over.
  • Gamer Girl: Max, since she is the arcade's owner's niece she can play for free which makes her better than Kid.
  • Goth: Max, (a goth girl). She even gives the basic guideline of the goth style to the boys, but they take it a bit too far.
  • Hated by All: Kid when he plays a SimCity expy. Not surprising given the fact that he put barbed wire around the city so no-one can leave it, uses the bodies of citizens killed in riots to measure the radioactivity levels of the leaks from the town's nuclear reactor and raised taxes to 100% to pay for the police he needs to oppress the population. Not surprisingly, when asked what the biggest problem is, 100% of the people say "The mayor!" His own sister thinks this the most disturbing thing he's ever done in a video game, and asks him to go back to the Ultra Super Death Gore Fest Chainsawer 3000.
  • Imagine Spot:
    • When Kid, Max and Carole imagine their possible medical careers: Max tells the patient what's going to happen, Kid shows up as a hideous mutant Deadly Doctor surgeon, and Carole is the hospital administrator.
    • In another, four of them pass by a snail. Big Bang sees himself making a complicated conference on snails, Horace playing catch with a snail his own size, Carole using snails in her new clothing line, and Kid emerging victorious from a castle on his battle-snail.
  • Kaizo Trap: The video games Kid plays are made of this trope.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Not only Kid, who is always seen wearing the same shoes, green cap and shorts with an orange tank top, but every single other character.
  • The Many Deaths of You: Every time we see Kid playing a game, we can expect him to fail or get in a situation where Failure Is the Only Option. It carried over to the Spin-Off series, Game Over.
  • Meat Grinder Surgery: Several movies Kid tries to get into are about this.
  • Missing Mom: Kid and Carole only have a father, and it's never explained why they don't have a mother.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: When comparing their memories of their Horrible Camping Trip, Kid's dad remembers a card game as a high-stakes casino night, fishing on a rowboat as driving a speedboat, etc.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Kid and Max express an interest in horror movies and Meat Grinder Surgery.
  • Ninja Prop: Subverted in a strip where Kid plays a video game and tries to refill his health bar by having his player character color it green with paint, only for it to not work.
  • Not Allowed to Grow Up: Kid and the other children despite the series went through several generations of consoles. Early strips had Kid play on cartridge-fed consoles, and one strip shows a blocky early 3D prototype game as something revolutionary.
  • Orwellian Retcon: In the first edition of the first comic, there's a strip where Kid's mother tells her husband that he's going to be late for work while she is offscreen. This is the only time Kid and Carole's mother is alluded to. In later editions of the book, the dialogue is modified so "honey" is replaced by "dad", meaning this is now Kid's sister talking instead of his mother. As a result, there is no more indication that Kid and Carole have a mother.
  • Perfectly Cromulent Word: When Kid and Carole are playing Scrabble.
  • Periphery Demographic: In-Universe.
    • Kid sees his sister run past to watch a gory zombie movie... because her favorite actor is in it.
    • Horace is a big fan of Rikiki the Duck, a particularly sappy kid's show.
  • Rage Quit: A few strips have the TV with a chair or hatchet embedded in it after one too many losses at The Little Barbarian.
  • Sadist Teacher: Kid's main teacher. Then again, he is Kid's teacher. His usual way to deal with the boys was to suspend them on hooks for coat outside the class by their t-shirt, now he simply yells at them.
  • Shown Their Work: While when it comes to a choice between accurately portraying video games and making a good joke the second option is chosen, this comic gets quite a few things right, even if exaggerated for comedic effect, such as the Nintendo Hard nature of early gaming, and the tendency of many SimCity players to turn every city they make into a dystopian police state.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: Kid is a boy who likes gore and violent videogames while his sister Carole enjoys stereotypical things for little girls.
  • Sliding Scale of Parent-Shaming in Fiction: Kid's father rarely reaches type 2, but they are so different that he often disagrees with him and sometimes thinks that he qualifies for Amazingly Embarrassing Parents.
  • The Smart Guy: Big Bang, although he feigns intelligence a lot to look more like a genius and overthink basic solutions. He can come up with a lot of invention such as ice coins that can go through arcade slots, remote controlled toys and earphones.
  • Totem Pole Trench: Kid and his friends, regularly, to sneak into a theater for horror movies they're too young to watch.
  • Ultra Super Death Gore Fest Chainsawer 3000: Many of the games Kid plays. Blood Chainsaw 3000 is even the name on one of the arcade games.
  • Unnamed Parent: Kid and Carole's dad isn't given any name.
  • Videogame Cruelty Potential: Especially when Kid plays Sim City, he turns the place into a police state.

The Little Barbarian sequences and Game Over provide examples of:

  • Delayed Causality: Subverted in one strip, where the Little Barbarian faces a katana-wielding monster that make several slashes at him, apparently just for intimidation. The hero guns it down, walks away... and falls into pieces.
  • Ear Wings: The Little Barbarian once gains flight-able giant ears by drinking a potion. He can then fly on top of a stone pillar to rescue the Princess; unfortunately, she's startled by his appearance and screams, which deafens the hero and makes him fall to his death.
  • Hope Spot: On occasion the barbarian makes it through the deathtrap in one piece, only to fall apart in the next panel or find out that the princess wasn't fast enough.
  • The Many Deaths of You: Game Over (as the name implies) is entirely focused on the many, MANY ways in which the Little Barbarian and/or the Princess get mangled in horrible ways. A common gag is that after saving the princess the barbarian will either do something gross or look perverted which ends with the princess killing him.
  • Nintendo Hard: The Little Barbarian game series, which has its own spin-off comic called Game Over. The game is vicious, full of Kaizo Trap, sometimes plain unwinnable (as in it constantly loops back), and one of the final boss has a two-minute timer on the pause button, which is the time it takes to pause the game and look out the long-winded explanation in the booklet on how to beat him.
  • Non Standard Game Over: One ending has the barbarian disguise himself as a monster, only for one of them to fall in love, get married, and go off on honeymoon with him.
  • Spin-Off: Game Over, centered about the barbarian games and the many failures.

Alternative Title(s): Game Over