Get Fuzzy is a newspaper comic written and drawn by Darby Conley, that chronicles the day to day (mis)adventures of a Siamese cat named Bucky, a Labrador-Shar Pei cross named Satchel and their owner/roommate, Rob Wilco.
The three live in an apartment in Boston, where Satchel has his own room, while Bucky takes a towel closet (he has not only complained about it, but seceded from the United States). Many of the jokes revolve around the mean-natured Bucky taking advantage of Satchel's naïveté, driving Rob crazy, and incredibly lame puns.
Starting in 2011, the strip slowly transitioned from a daily strip into a Sunday-only strip, although no official statement was ever made about this. As of 2013, the weekday strips consist only of reruns. According to Stephan Pastis, Conley has been taking several breaks from the strip due to "personal reasons".
Get Fuzzy provides examples of:
- Aborted Arc:
- Bucky was once blackmailed by the chimpmunkfia but by the next week the arc was completely forgotten. About a year later he got into debt with cat mafia who sent one of their Affably Evil goons to threaten him into paying. Bucky left with Satchel to buy them off with a blank check and Satchel's sprained arm (Bucky had offered to have Satchel win the money in a fight against two dogs, but Rob intervened) but we never found out what happened. The next week it was mentioned once and never spoken of again.
- A few comics had Satchel finally putting Bucky in his place. For a short time Bucky was terrified of saying or doing anything to upset Satchel. After about a week it's just dropped and never really brought up again.
- Early strips had Rob having a crush on a new neighbor who only had eyes for Bucky. The character and the story were quickly dropped.
- Acquired Poison Immunity: In the strip for May 18th 2013, Bucky tries to build up an immunity to poison by eating spiders.
- Affably Evil: Whitey. He may be a mafia hitcat, but he's also very polite and friendly
- Air-Vent Passageway: Bucky tried to take this route once in an attempt to get to his ferret nemesis. He got lost.
- Alliterative Name: Mac Manc McManx, sometimes called M3.
- All-Loving Hero: Chubby Huggs. He loves everyone. He even hugs his pillow every morning to thank it for being so soft. Bucky is terrified of him.
- Appeal to Obscurity: A variation in this strip. Satchel tells Bucky that in Alaska they use Malamutes to protect themselves against Wampas. When Bucky tells Satchel that Wampas don't exist, Satchel merely states that that shows how tough Malamutes are.
- April Fools' Day: The strip joined FoxTrot and Pearls Before Swine for an April Fool's Day gag◊ involving◊ a Ouija board◊ in 2005.
- Art Evolution:
- The main characters looked a lot more realistic in the early comics. Just compare this comic to any current one. Bucky doesn't even look like the same character.
- Not just the characters, but take a look at the comic as a whole; the comic up till about 2005 had a much cleaner, neater, and more detailed look to both the writing and illustration, though from 2005 to today, it looks considerably rougher and a little more simplistic.
- Artistic License Animal Care: Rob's mother tries to make her cat go vegetarian. Portrayed fairly accurately aside from the fact that the cat's still alive, as she is in obvious distress over the situation, even begging Rob to kill her.
- Ascended Meme: The strip had been compared to Garfield since it started. At one point in the comic Bucky gets a Garfield book and immediately notes how their lives are so similar.
- As the Good Book Says...
- In one strip, Rob tries to get Bucky to treat Satchel better by quoting him one of Jesus' sayings from the Gospel According to Matthew; Bucky thinks he's quoting some random guy named Matthew. Bucky also assumes the chapter/verse were the time of day Matthew said it. (It was The Golden Rule, Matthew 7:12).
- Rob once told Bucky that "he [Bucky] would have to swear on the good book" (or something to that effect). Bucky leaves, and then stands on Richard Scarry's Best Rainy Day Book and says every bad word he can think of.
- Aside Glance: Rob does this from time to time after some of Bucky's more nonsensical comments.
- Beef Bandage: Satchel has to use a steak as one after Bucky hits him in an early strip, which forces Rob and his girlfriend to have tofu for dinner instead.
- Beware the Nice Ones
- Every once in a while Satchel gets angry. One time he picked Bucky up and threw him out of the room, another time in a heated argument over Bucky wanting a 2-volume phone book when Satchel only got him a 1-volume phone book, Satchel obliges by tearing the phone book in half.
- Could also overlap with "Beware the Dim Ones", because Satchel has been known to do things, with the best of intentions, that nonetheless culminate in seriously tweaking out and/or injuring Bucky. For example, see a recent arc when Bucky, who had already had problems with Satchel's red-green colorblindness, used a granny smith apple for his threat level system, prompting Satchel to throw him out the window for his own safety. The landing broke Bucky's arm.
- Perhaps the best example of this is when Bucky casually makes a rude remark about one of Satchel's friends. Satchel flips out, grabs Bucky and loudly and angrily threatens him before storming off, leaving Bucky visibly terrified. It's as awesome as it sounds.
- Bucky is waiting to have his fang re-attached and Satchel comments they're in the same animal hospital that bandaged his arm. Bucky asked if it hurt, and Satchel goes on to happily describe it as one of the most painful experiences of his life, leaving Bucky worried and shaking. While it could have Satchel not realizing he was scaring Bucky, remember that Satchel was heavily sedated while his arm was worked on, and even said he felt good when Rob first saw him.
- Bilingual Bonus: Within the same language. Bucky's cousin from Manchester, Mac Manc McManx, speaks in Mancusian dialect and is largely unintelligible to the rest of the cast."Cracking dinner medals."note
- Box-and-Stick Trap: In the June 10th, 2013 strip Rob and Satchel team up to lure Bucky into a blanket-covered cage in order to take him to his annual veterinarian checkup.
- Canada, Eh?: Satchel is Canadian.
- Cats Are Mean
- Bucky could be the Trope Namer.
- Mac Manc McManx and Foodar play with this in that they aren't as nice as Chubby, but they're pretty harmless, especially compared to Bucky.
- In one strip, Rob is debating the appeal of cats with Bucky, and asks Bucky which of his friends people (who aren't cats) seem to like best. Bucky rattles off a list, which Rob points out consists entirely of personable, easygoing cats, and states that everyone's favorite cats are the ones that act like dogs.
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Bucky spent the entire December 2010 run of strips expounding his theory that The Muppets are Cold War-era Soviet experiments.
- Comically Missing the Point: During an early 2012 series of strips where Bucky tried presenting his greatest idea to Rob and Satchel, the "Buckcord" (which is actually a fork with an electric cord taped to it), Rob tries telling Bucky that forks and electricity do not mix. Naturally, Bucky then tells Rob that he came up with a safe way for kids to handle the Buckcord, by presenting a child-safe outlet to stick the Buckcord into, which actually turns out to be a toaster.
- Cone of Shame: Used a few times. Even referred to as "the cone of shame".
- Continuity Nod
- As the comic went on, fewer references to noodle incidents were made and instead the characters refer to past events.
- Rob's glasses still show up. Sometimes he's actually wearing them because he doesn't have his contacts, other times they're just lying around.
- For a many number of years, Satchel wore a watch, and it was even a plot-point in a 2002 story arc in which he injures his paw when chasing a bicycle, thus breaking his watch, which upsets him greatly. Over time, however, Satchel's watch eventually just disappeared, something that did not go unnoticed by loyal readers - in fact, when fans began questioning Satchel's watch (or lack thereof), that was brought up in a strip, where Rob casually remarks to Satchel noticing he never wears his watch anymore.
- Crunch Tastic/Perfectly Cromulent Word: Bucky comes up with these on a regular basis, with "groovitude" being a recurring favorite of his. And don't forget "Dinnerfy" and "Eatification".
- Curse Cut Short
- There have been several variations of "Son of a...", including being interrupted by another character.
- In one strip, Bucky and Satchel keep having a laugh over Rob's high school year book photo, with his messy hair, large glasses, braces, and acne.Bucky: So, were you voted, "Most likely to remain chickless"?
Rob: Dude, I'm about to be voted, "Most likely to kick your—
Satchel: Assuredly, that is the skinniest leather tie I have ever seen!
- Deadpan Snarker: Rob most of the time. Satchel seems to be slowly becoming one of these, probably because of Rob's influence.
- Didn't Think This Through: Bucky steals Satchel's yogurt and and promises to give it back only if he can make an anagram of the sentence "Satchel Pooch is an awful and annoying dog". Satchel simply rearranges it to "Satchel Pooch is an annoying and awful dog" forcing Bucky to concede.
- Disproportionate Retribution: Rob grounds Bucky for...making a bad pun.
- Dogs Are Dumb: Poor Satchel. He's so dumb he doesn't know what a loser is, so when Bucky makes the L sign he thinks he's being called a
- Drop-In Character: McManx keeps popping up. He seems to think he lives with Rob; even when he does get back to England, it's only for a visit.
- Dunk The Witch: Bucky uses this on Satchel half to bully him and half to give him a much-needed bath.
- Early Installment Weirdness:
- The focus of the comic is centered more around Rob in the early days, with a greater emphasis on his human friends, either visiting him and interacting with the pets and even following Rob to work where he tends to hear about his pets' crazy exploits over telephone. Almost all incidental characters now are animal friends of Bucky or Satchel and scenes of Rob at work are never seen anymore, with a good portion of the action in storylines following the exploits Bucky and/or Satchel get into while Rob is away.
- Lesser example: During the first 2 years, Rob almost always wore glasses, and it was implied he was Blind Without 'Em.
- Eskimos Aren't Real: Bucky tries to tell Satchel that Hawaii is a myth perpetrated by the Liberal Media. He also claims that Harry Potter is fictional because it contains fictional elements, namely owls, trains, and England.
- Everything's Better with Monkeys: Monkeys are an obsession (and would-be Trademark Favorite Food) for Bucky.
- Evil Laugh: Bucky's is more of a "disturbing smirk" ("KEH!").
- Extreme Omnivore: Satchel admits he'll eat pretty much anything, and at one point is tricked into eating a pillow. Bucky would like to think of himself as an Extreme Carnivore, mostly to spite his vegetarian owner.
- Flipping the Bird: Bucky does this to an expert on valuables... somehow.
- Funny Animal: Almost every animal that appears is a mix between this and Talking Animal.
- Funny Foreigner: Bucky's cousin Mac Manc Mcmanx is one of these.
- Fun with Acronyms
- Canines Against Traffic; Atlantic Research of Supernatural Entities; Intelligence Department, Institute Of The International Cathood.
- Gosh Dang It to Heck!: Taken to odd lengths at times. While "Holy cow!" is a fairly common expression, things like "What the cow?!" or "Oh my cow!" aren't. Bucky tends to use Garfield in these cases.
- Grievous Bottley Harm: Bucky tries this with a plastic bottle, with predictable results.
- Groin Attack: The strip for April 21st, 2013. Satchel accidentally hits Rob in the groin while practicing swatting mosquitos with his eyes closed.
- HA HA HANo: In the strip for 9-27-13, Satchel does this when Bucky asks if his attempt to look like a superhero is a success.
- Hidden Depths: Bucky found Satchel's crushed watch in the sewer and fixed it. Anyone who's ever had to fix a watch (or pay for someone else to do it) knows that this can be extremely difficult.
- High on Catnip: Several examples. The effects differ from strip to strip. Sometimes Bucky acts hyper and other times he acts like a stereotypical stoner.
- Hipster: Bucky sure sounds like one in this strip.
- Hollywood New England: Mostly averted, aside from occasional references to Rob's Red Sox fandom.
- Hypocritical Humor:
- At one point Bucky takes an old coonskin cap of Rob's and converts it into a vest.Rob: I know you like that coonskin thing, but it just seems kind of morbid, you know...wearing the skin of another animal...
Bucky: And that's different from your leather jacket how?
Rob: Well, it... see... when I... um... Go to your closet.
- In an early strip, Rob drives past a McDoodle's, of which both Satchel and Bucky remark they're hungry, but Rob insists they're going home; Satchel and Bucky repeat that they would like Howdy Meals, but Rob isn't having it.Rob: No! No! You guys are so immature! I wanna go home! I wanna go home!!
- At one point Bucky takes an old coonskin cap of Rob's and converts it into a vest.
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: The collection and treasury books take their titles from the dialogue of any particular strip that's featured in the book.
- Improvised Cross:
- In a story arc from 2002, Bucky crawls into the air conditioning vent and can't get himself out, so he starts demanding Satchel to help him out; at first, Satchel assumes the voice he's hearing is God, since it came from above, but when Bucky says it's not God, Satchel then assumes it's Satan, then tries to rebuke him by holding two pencils in the shape of a cross.
- Averted in a much earlier strip from 1999, in which Satchel completes his wood project, which seems to bear resemblance to a cross of some kind, even Rob remarks that he didn't know Satchel was religious.Satchel: What does making a spice rack have to do with me being religious?
Rob: Oh! Um. No reason.
- Insane Troll Logic: Bucky spouts this constantly. In fact, the strip is largely based around some hairbrained plan or idea of his.
- Instant Wristwatch: Averted, as Satchel frequently wore a wristwatch early in the strip despite not knowing how to tell time.
- In the Blood: According to Bucky's cousin Mac, the entire family shares Bucky's feelings toward monkeys.
- Jive Turkey: Oreo, Satchel's love interest, suddenly starts talking like this at one point later in the comic's run, even to Satchel's confusion.Oreo: Aw, come on, Satchmo, this ain't cool, yo!
Satchel: Um... wait, what isn't? Um... "yo"?
Oreo: Bringin' the hydrophobe (Bucky), yo!
- Lighter and Softer: Parodied with Bucky's "Napworks" film studio concept.
- Limited Wardrobe
- Mathematician's AnswerRob: So... you got a name?
Dog: Of course.
Rob: Can you tell me your name?
Dog: Yes, I can.
Satchel: Be more specific.
Rob: What is your name?
Dog: Ibid Q. Muttly.
- Moment Killer: Bucky invokes this at the end of an early story arc, in which Rob's first girlfriend, Kellie, comes over for dinner (which Bucky ruins, between Satchel using the steak that Rob was going to cook for his eye since Bucky punched him, to a flu-infected Bucky sneezing all over the dinner Satchel prepared for them), and at the end of the evening, Rob tries to apologize for all the mishaps, all the while Bucky stands in the doorway, watching them.Bucky: So, are you two gonna smooch, or am I wasting my time?
- Mundane Fantastic: It's a world where cats and dogs (and some other pets) can talk, but aren't quite as intelligent as humans. Sometimes this becomes a plot point, but most of the time it's just background noise.
- The Name Is Bond, James Bond: Everyone thinks the spy Bucky hired is invoking this, but his name really is Bob Jimbob.
- Negative Continuity:
- In the story arc where Satchel injures his arm in trying to chase a bicycle, and ends up losing his watch, Bucky actually finds and fixes the watch, of which Rob actually mentions to Satchel. Much, much later that same year, when it's Christmas, Satchel is surprised to see Bucky's present to him is his old watch. Maybe it's justified, Satchel was under a lot of stress and probably forgot about Bucky finding and fixing it.
- Rob only said Bucky had been "finding and fixing watches," he never said it was Satchel's. Satchel either didn't understand what Rob was talking about and didn't ask, or he just assumed Rob was talking about some other watch.
- Noodle Incident: Occasional references to past Bucky misdeeds such as the "hockey stick incident" and the "baseball game incident".
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: One story arc involved Bucky suing Fungo, and taking him to see Judge Judy. Needless to say, Judge Judy was not impressed with Bucky's case (or lack thereof as far as she was concerned).
- No Flow in CGI: A rare comic strip example: Darby Conley crossed Satchel with a Labrador to avoid having to draw so many wrinkles than if he were a pure-bred Shar-Pei.
- One Scene, Two Monologues: Most commonly between Bucky and Satchel, typically leading to a series of non-sequiturs
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: One strip had Bucky disguise himself as a cat named "Filipo". His accent started out Mexican, but quickly shifted to Scottish. When he tried to "explain" this, it became Australian.
- Opaque Nerd Glasses: When the strip began, Rob was always shown wearing these. They were phased out over time with it being explicitly stated that he switched to contacts. They still appear every now and then, although not always as opaque.
- Phrase Catcher: Bucky tries to invent a catch phrase for himself, and tries to get Satchel to be his Phrase Catcher, because "when you're Übergroovy, people say [your catch phrase] for you".
- Punny Name: Rob's brother, Roger Wilco.
- Real Men Wear Pink: Bucky owns a doll which he named "Miss Pretty"
- Retconning the Wiki: Bucky edits Wikipedia to say that he won Wimbledon and that his "album" went "fourple platinum", as well as that he beat up Fungo.
- Ridiculously Long Phone Hold: Invoked in a 2005 story arc, in which Rob attempts to get in touch with Dull Computer customer support. At one point during his call, he's placed on hold for hours — so many hours, in fact, that he can't make dinner, and has Satchel order pizza for the night. Meanwhile, at Dull Computers, a few customer service reps boast about their personal records of keeping customers on hold, ranging from three hours to five hours, to one guy who still has a customer on hold as they speak.
- Scary Shadow Fakeout: Bucky Kat, having been warned by a horoscope to "Beware of the Grim Reaper", ends up frightened by some kid in a loose-fitting jacket holding a football flag.
- Self-Deprecation: Darby did this in the Pearls storyline. It depicted him as a lazy, rude slob. In contrast, Stephan Pastis was neat, professional, and polite.
- Series Continuity Error: A number of elements that were present within the first couple of years of the comic were either phased out or dropped altogether, such as:
- Rob isn't actually a vegetarian at first. He's eaten steak, hamburgers, seafood, and even sampled a meatloaf recipe Satchel made.
- Rob, Bucky, and Satchel appear to live in a house in the suburbs towards the beginning of the comic. This, in and of itself can be considered Negative Continuity: for the most part, the interior of their residence looks like that of an apartment building in the city, however on the outside looks more like a converted boarding house.
- Rob's treatment of Bucky and Satchel seemed to differ from time to time. In some cases, he regards them as and even refers to them as his "roommates", while other times, he acts like a surrogate father figure to them, though most of the time, he does acknowledge them as his pets, especially when they do animal-like activities, such as Satchel going to playgroups.
- The tribute to Douglas Adams' death (about two-thirds of the way down the page).
- Rob's tastes in music, television, sports teams, etc. frequently involve Shout Outs to same.
- There is a member of the Cat Mafia named Whitey. Whitey is the nickname of James Bulger, a former Irish mobster who operated out of the Boston area.
- This strip references Zero Wing.
- In the strip for November 9th 2013, Bucky is hit on the head by a tomato thrown at him from behind him. He says "It came from...behind", a reference to a line spoken by a Rebel pilot in Star Wars: A New Hope during the attack on the Death Star. The pilot said "They came from...behind" in reference to attacks by Darth Vader and his Imperial TIE fighter wingmen.
- In one early strip, Rob and Satchel bump into each other in the hallway, while Rob was eating from a jar of peanut butter, and Satchel was eating from a bag of jerky bits. This is a parody of the Reese's Peanut Butter Cup commercials from the 1970s (which used chocolate instead of jerky).Rob: Aww man, you got jerky bits in my peanut butter!
Satchel: No, you got peanut butter on my jerky bits!
- One comic had Satchel using a Candy Land board in conjunction with an Ouija widget; and wondering why a ghost would pass through multiple dimensions to tell him "Gumdrop, Gumdrop, Lolly" when Rob tells him he needs a Ouija board to make the widget work properly.
- Silence, You Fool!: Bucky sometimes says this to Satchel.
- Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: Bucky's is neighboring ferret Fungo Squiggly.
- The Slacker: Mac Manc Mcmanx is likely one of these.
- Species Surname
- Bucky Katt and Satchel Pooch.
- Discussed regarding Mac Manc McManx and the fact that he has a long tail instead of the short ones the Manx are known for. Played straight when Mac explains that his father's last name is McManx, but his mother's maiden name is McTabby.
- In one series of strips, Bucky meets a cat simply named "Cat Cat". He figured he was getting too old to be named "Kitty Kitty".
- Stealth Insult: In one strip, Bucky calls himself a "five-tool cat." Rob suggests a "compromise" of calling him "one giant tool", which Bucky agrees to.
- Stealth Pun: An English bulldog is called King Henry the VIII by the other dogs. Rob asks if they call him that because he's big and he's British. Satchel replies that it's "because he's big and he goes for the neck when he's mad."
- Strawman Political: Bucky is sometimes depicted as a particularly deranged form of Straw Conservative; while he mocks the liberal beliefs of Satchel and Rob, he's never really expressed any political opinions of his own. He did try to vote for Pat Buchanan once, since he was the most "anti-people" choice there was.
- Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: Rob's mom tries to make her cat go vegetarian. Said cat is miserable and unhealthy as a result.
- Symbol Swearing
- Take That!:
- One strip has Bucky and Satchel talk about the "ridiculous new Muppet" on TV... only for Rob to point out they're watching Geraldo Rivera.
- A few jabs at the French in early strips.
- Bucky once voted for Pat Buchanan because he was the most "anti-people" choice there was.
- An In-Universe one when Bucky, angry at Rob for refusing to give him his Boston Red Sox hat (the B is for Bucky), walks past him in a Yankees hat. The last panel is Rob's face clearly in outrage.
- Talking Animal: In a world where this seems to be a normal thing to humanity. One arc had Bucky call a psychic hotline and once the psychic realized Bucky was a cat instead of an abused child, she just lets him know how much the call cost.
- Third-Person Person: Bucky went through such a phase at one point, much to Rob's annoyance.
- Threat Backfire: In this◊ strip, Bucky owes a large sum of money to feline mobsters, who send a cat named Whitey to collect. Whitey's threat backfires because unlike other examples of this trope, Bucky happens to be a sociopath.
- Too Dumb to Live
- Took a Level in Jerkass: All three of the main characters developed less pleasant personalities as time went on.
- Trademark Favorite Food
- Tuna for Bucky. Monkeys would also be among his favorites, if he could ever succeed in eating one.
- Jerky Bits and later, Fig Newtons (preferably microwaved) for Satchel. He also enjoys canned dog food dumped directly onto the floor.
- Rob gets chocolate sticks from Dunkin' Donuts every Monday and Thursday.
- Similarly, Cousin Willy loves Dunkin's crullers.
- Trapped by Gambling Debts: In one arc, Bucky was faced with the threat of getting killed by another cat, because he lost a bet on a baseball game and didn't have enough money to pay the debt.
- Tropaholics Anonymous
- Rob joins one for Red Sox fans.
- Satchel once wanted to join a support group for dogs, so he could surround himself with other likeminded canines. In another strip years later, Satchel actually does join a support group, saying he has a guilty pleasure is eating; his sponsor tells him food isn't a guilty pleasure, to which Bucky (who was tagging along) said that Satchel didn't say food.
- True Art Is Incomprehensible: Bucky attempted to invoke this one by making "art" by destroying Rob's things, much to Rob's consternation.
- Rob was named after two childhood friends of Darby Conley, both of whom were conveniently named Rob.
- In-universe, both Bucky and Satchel are said to be named after two baseball greats: Buck O'Neil, and Satchel Paige, respectively.
- The Unintelligible: A running gag regarding the way Mac talks.Rob: Mac, I'm sorry dude, but I can't understand a word you're saying.
Mac: Cheers. I'll write it down and that.
Rob: "Stuffing your kite..." OK, see, I understand each individual word... I don't quite understand the order you seem put them in...
Mac: Cracking dinner medals.
- Wall of Text: During the Sunday Comics, the amount of words can get very unwieldy.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Satchel's Dad was a search and rescue dog and when the two meet again his dad thinks of his son being a house dog as nothing and browbeats the poor pooch until Satchel's mother comes in and gives the poor boy a hug.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?:
- Many of the animals in this universe clearly have human-level intelligence, but are kept as pets and livestock, denied the right to vote, given medical treatment involuntarily, and do not get paid for work.
- In one series of strips, Bucky actually joins an activist movement made up of cats protesting against declawing and neutering and advocating for the right to vote. It's strictly Played for Laughs; a rally gets cut short due to all the cats freaking out over some megaphone feedback.
- Why We Can't Have Nice Things: Rob says this, word-for-word, when Bucky destroys his and Satchel's bobble-head figure of Nomar Garciaparra (because Bucky took its seemingly nodding expression as an indication it wanted a fight).
- Who Names Their Kid "Dude"?: Copernicus thinks "Satchel" is a stupid name.
- You Look Like You've Seen a Ghost: An early strip has Rob and Satchel awoken in the middle of the night by a shriek and discovering a terrified Bucky clinging to the living room drapes.Satchel: It... it... it looks... it looks like... like he's seen... seen a... a... seen a GHOST!
Rob: Well, duh, I thought you'd never finish that sentence.