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Comic Strip / Migraine Boy

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Migraine Boy is a comic strip made in The '90s created by American cartoonist Greg Fiering. It's a black and white six-panel strip about the aforementored "Migraine Boy", a Hair-Trigger Temper Deadpan Snarker boy who's always angry because of his consistent migraine, who has a neighbour who's always happy and try to befriend him, usually resulting in Migraine Boy killing him.

The publication was published originally in the Seattle-based Hype magazine, later being published in other famous magazines as Rolling Stone and Entertainment Weekly. The success of the strip was enough to be part of R.E.M.'s 1994 album Monster, with Fiering providing the album art and sticking Migrane Boy throughout the liner notes, and the comic later achieved popularity worldwide for a series of twelve 30-second animated bumpers for MTV, animated by studio GreenHead Media. The comic strip released two compilation books and an animated short in 3D was made in 2001 called The Bet. Between 2006 and 2014, Fiering posted new Migraine Boy webcomics first on his personal website and later on the official "Migraine Boy and Pals" website.


In an interesting case, a Dark Parody was made in Chile at the start of the Turn of the Millennium in the form of Adobe Flash Web Animation, which used the MTV animation as base and made it Bloodier and Gorier and with a lot of Vulgar Humor and local Cluster F-Bomb, becoming a success in Chile at the point of overpassing the original animation. Until today, it's still considered a Cult Classic and a source of Memetic Mutation.

Though offline, Wayback Machine hosts the official website and Migraine Boy section in Fiering's website. Also in YouTube can be found the original MTV animation as well the Chilean version.note 


Look at those tropes, Migraine Boy!

  • Bloodier and Gorier: The Chilean animation has full of Gorn even more than the original source, especially about his neighbour dying in various ways.
  • The Cameo:
    • Migraine Boy appeared twice in music albums: first in R.E.M.'s Monster inside the album book as part of Fiering's artwork for the album, and as the second album of UK's indie band The Gardeners being Migraine Boy the Album Title Drop and with a song dedicated to him of the same name, not to mention he appeared in the cover too.
    • Roberto Manfinfla, the other famous web animation of "" (the creators of Chilean version) has some cameos of him. There, Migraine Boy appeared in a poster of Roberto's room in one episode and in a TV show when Roberto was making zapping in another.
  • Catchphrase: Chilean Migraine Boy distincts of his original counterpart by having a marked "Nnnnnnno!" as his catchphrase.
  • A Chat with Satan: The colored short movie The Bet is about Satan making a bet with Migraine Boy: if he lost in a guitar duel, he goes to the hell. He deliberily lost since the hell was better than his reality, just to realize he came back to the same reality he had before (in black and white).
  • Dark Parody: The Chilean animation, full of Vulgar Humor and Gorn, which was better received by fans than the original MTV version.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Migraine Boy, obviously.
  • Deliberately Monochrome: The work in general, since the original comic strips to the Chilean Dark Parody are made in black and white with a purpose. Averted with the short movie The Bet and some colored strips.
  • Dub Name Change: Apart of the obvious translation, the Chilean version gave a name to the neighbour (here called as Tim) and changed the name to the dog (from Tylenol to Mauricio, now Tim's dog).
  • Gag Penis: In the Chilean version, Migraine Boy had some jokes about this, usually making A Date with Rosie Palms in public, one of the big (and many) differences between this parody and the MTV version.
  • Grass Is Greener: One strip (and also animated short) shows Migraine Boy's neighbour refering to this trope and then looking behind the fence:
    Migraine Boy's neighbour Wow! You should see this, Migraine Boy! It's us, but were better dressed!
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Migraine Boy is an irritable boy, not just because of his migraine but his neighbour who's happy all the time and makes him angry to no end.
  • Meaningful Name: Migraine Boy's dog is called Tylenol as the painkiller used for Migraine, and certainly is one of the few things that doesn't bother him.
  • Merchandise-Driven: In 2019, Migraine Boy gained his own limited figure thanks to Mr. Blank Toys.
  • The Movie: The Bet is considered as this, even when it's a 2-minute short is still more time than the 30-seconds shorts on MTV.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Migraine Boy as well his neighbour don't have official names, where only Migraine Boy's dog is the only who has a name: Tylenol. Partly subverted when in one episode Migraine Boy is called as "Joey".
  • Perpetual Smiler: Migraine Boy's neighbour is constantly happy at the point of irritate the viewer. Even in one strip where he suicides himself in front of Migraine Boy, he was smiling.
  • Ruder and Cruder: The Chilean Dark Parody had more swearing, Gorn, and Sex Comedy than the original source. Yet it was also funnier than the original shorts, which led it to become a Cult Classic in its native Chile.
  • Shout-Out: The Chilean parody used as entrance an extract of the guitar rift intro from Korn's "A.D.I.D.A.S."
  • Spider-Sense: A special case. Instead of sensing the danger, the migraine of Migraine Boy is marked with thin lines around his head, which are thicker when his headache is stronger.
  • Talking Animal: In some shorts and strips, the dog Tylenol talks to Migraine Boy to his surprise.
  • Uncanny Family Resemblance: In the work in general, every Migraine Boy's family member looks exactly like him, but with different clothes and hair.