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Comic Strip / Baldo

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Baldo is a newspaper comic written by Hector Cantu and drawn by Carlos Castellanos.

The comic centers around the title character, Baldomero "Baldo" Bermudez, a Hispanic teenager who works at an auto parts store and dreams of one day owning a lowrider. Other main characters include Baldo's little sister Gracie, his widower father Sergio, his great-aunt Tia Carmen, and his best friend and Side Kick Cruz.

The comic is kind of like a Latino version of Zits, with maybe a little bit of FoxTrot thrown in for good measure.


This strip contains examples of:

  • Aborted Arc: In April 2009, Baldo was promoted to assistant manager at Auto Y Rod. This was never mentioned again.
  • Animated Adaptation: There was a Baldo cartoon made for Spanish-language television.
  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Gracie has a tendency to be a know-it-all to Baldo as well as trying to be right, so the two get in constant arguments.
  • Art Shift: On occasion, the style changes from cartoony to photorealistic (sometimes even within the same strip), especially during a mood change. However, it always eventually changes back to cartoony. One art shift featured a professional comic book artist illustrating one of Baldo's superhero fantasies.
  • Author Tract: The storylines about illegal immigration, lottery scams, and others.
  • Balloonacy: Sergio tried this in his youth. The balloons raised him and his lawnchair just as high as his first-story window, which the wind immediately smacked him into, breaking it and knocking him off the chair and into a thorny rosebush.
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  • Betty and Veronica: An arc in August 2012 introduced the love triangle of Baldo/Beatriz/Estella, with Beatriz as the Betty and Estella as the Veronica to Baldo's Archie.
  • Child Prodigy: Gracie is very intelligent for a girl her age.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome:
    • Sylvia Sanchez, who was Baldo's crush (and potential love interest) until he hooked up with Smiley. Sylvia hasn't been heard from since, even after Baldo broke up with Smiley.
    • Smiley herself fits this trope as well: she hasn't been seen or mentioned since 2006.
  • Comic-Book Time: Lampshaded in one strip.
  • Cool Old Lady: Tia Carmen, on occasion.
  • Crossover: With Yenny.
  • Dead Person Conversation: Tia Carmen has had a few of these with her dead husband.
  • Did I Just Say That Out Loud?: When Baldo is introduced to his new co-worker Beatriz.
    Mr. Rod: Baldo, this is Beatriz. She's new here so you'll be training her.
    Baldo: Training her to love me. ...Sorry, that was supposed to be a thought bubble.
  • Dreadful Musician: In one story arc, Gracie learns how to play the guitar and sing some traditional Spanish songs, but as it turns out, she's not very gifted in playing the guitar or singing in any way.
  • Everything Sounds Sexier in French: Spanish rather than French; used here, though they broke up the following week.
  • Girl Next Door: Smiley, literally. And Baldo's co-worker Beatriz (though not literally).
  • Gratuitous Spanish:
    • Sergio and Carmen use Spanish phrases frequently; and to a lesser extent, Baldo and Gracie do as well.
    • As did Smiley, who watched Spanish television and picked up the language.
      Smiley: So what are you doing sábado? Anything gigante?
  • Guest Strip:
    • Dave Alvarez of Yenny guest-drew a Sunday comic, then contributed artwork for the rest of the week, leading to a canon Crossover between Yenny and Baldo.
    • Lela Lee of Angry Little Girls also drew a few strips, under the pretext that she was a girl Gracie met on the playground who showed her her drawings.
  • High School: Baldo attends high school, so it's a frequent setting for the comic.
  • Logical Fallacies: The Recurring Character Billy, who is subconsciously predjudicial, and thinks that Hispanic people are discriminating against him.
  • Meganekko: Esmeralda, Baldo's post-Beatriz girlfriend. Tia Carmen could be seen as a mature version.
  • Missing Mom: Sergio's wife, Rosa, who died in a car accident.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • Jumping from light humor to a photorealistic Tia Carmen talking to a mustachioed stranger about Rosa's car accident, then back to light humor.
    • Smiley's Evil Makeover also fits. The first two strips in the arc are set up to look like she and Baldo genuinely miss each other, followed, two days later, with her becoming popular and stuck-up.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Baldo (short for Baldomero), Gracie (short for Graciela), Cruz, and Smiley.
  • Peek-a-Bogeyman: El Cucuy, the family bogeyman.
  • Pint-Sized Kid: Gracie.
  • Put on a Bus to Hell: Smiley. After her "evil makeover" and rise to popularity in high school, making her a far cry from the girl next door that she was, she was never seen again.
  • Refuge in Audacity: One story arc featured the family going through Colorado, and they were surprised at how everything was burned and smoking - which was even run in newspapers right as Colorado was in national news for wildfires. They got away with it.
  • Shout-Out: To Gus Arriola's comic strip Gordo, by way of Tia Carmen flashing back to a meeting with the titular character of said comic.
  • Side Kick: Cruz.
  • The Slacker: Joey and Billy.
  • Straw Feminist: Gracie, sometimes.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Beatriz, who seems to have taken the place of both Sylvia and Smiley.
  • Taught by Television:
    • In one arc, Baldo met an immigrant named Humberto, who learned English and fashion sense from MTV. Baldo also met Humberto's brothers, who learned the same things from Gilligan's Island and The Beverly Hillbillies.
    • Smiley learned Spanish from watching Spanish TV.
  • Will They or Won't They?: They've been dragging out Beatriz and Baldo since about 2005 or so. Justified since it's not the focus of the strip (and Beatriz had a boyfriend for a few years), but sometimes the comic can go a year between strips that show that Baldo really likes Beatriz, or vice versa.
  • Your Favorite: Tia Carmen tells Baldo she made his favorite potatoes.


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