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Good deeds: whether you like them or not! note 
They're scary, they're dangerous, they're just plain bad! But they're also very nice!
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The Bad Guys is a series of children’s comic-chapter books by Australian author Aaron Blabey.

The series centers around Mr. Wolf, Mr. Snake, Mr. Piranha, and Mr. Shark, four predators that decide they no longer want to be bad guys anymore, and decide to turn to the side of good. Unfortunately, they’re not the best at this.

The books currently released include:

  1. The Bad Guys (2015)
  2. The Bad Guys in Mission Unpluckable (2015)
  3. The Bad Guys in The Furball Strikes Back (2016)
  4. The Bad Guys in Attack of the Zittens (2016)
  5. The Bad Guys in Intergalactic Gas (2017)
  6. The Bad Guys in Alien Vs Bad Guys (2017)
  7. The Bad Guys in Do-You-Think-He-Saurus?! (2018)
  8. The Bad Guys in Superbad (2018)
  9. The Bad Guys in the Big Bad Wolf (2019)

A movie for the series by DreamWorks Animation is in development.


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The Bad Guys provides examples of:

  • Afro Asskicker: Agent Kitty Cat, one of the members of The International League of Heroes, has a large black afro. Until "Superbad", she was only seen from the back, with her afro being her defining feature.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: Mr. Wolf has an obvious crush on Agent Fox, which she doesn’t bother to reciprocate.
  • As You Know: Mr. Wolf goes through the plan for the audience's convenience in "The Furball Strikes Back", much to the annoyance of Mr. Snake, as they already know the plan.
  • Atrocious Alias: Mr. Wolf attempts to name the organization "The Good Guys Club", much to the annoyance of the others, who find it ridiculous. Mr. Wolf mainly keeps pushing it because Agent Fox thought it was "cute".
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: The four main characters wear black suits that give them a gang-like feel in their work, while also emphasizing their original bad personas.
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  • Barefoot Cartoon Animal: Despite the suits the main characters wear, none of them wear shoes.
  • Being Evil Sucks: Even before the series begins, Mr. Wolf realizes that he's sick of people being afraid of him, and wants to be the good guy for a change. It takes a bit of persuasion and example for the others, however.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Don’t call Mr. Piranha a sardine.
    • Don't call Dr. Marmalade "cute". This is what actually drove him to villainy. This even extends to his alien form, which is terrifying by Earth standards.
  • The Big Bad Wolf: Mr. Wolf, who is pointedly the same wolf from The Three Little Pigs and Little Red Riding Hood. Despite this, he’s the first one to invoke the change to good, and is the most insistent of it.
  • Bizarre Alien Biology: The alien species that Dr. Marmalade secretly is have multiple mouths on feelers, butts for hands, leave piles of slime when they move, and can hold their breath in space for nine weeks.
  • Bruiser with a Soft Center: Once he solidifies himself on the side of good, Mr. Shark's dangerous persona quickly drops, and he quickly becomes the emotional center of the team. He's more open with fears, but still won't hesitate to lash out in anger when things go wrong.
  • Carnivore Confusion:
    • The main characters are explicitly meat eaters, and have blatantly been shown and mentioned eating prey, regardless of them being as sentient as them.
    • Even with the anthropomorphic slant of the world, fast food restaurants with burgers and beef burritos still exist as food.
  • Cassandra Truth: Being considered the bad guys still means even the police won’t believe them, as proven when Dr. Marmalade hides out on the moon to zombify the world.
  • Cats Hate Water: Zittens hate water, which makes it useful as a defense against them.
  • Cat Up a Tree: The team’s first mission in being good is to rescue a cat stuck in a tree. The cat is more terrified of them than being stuck in the tree, and eventually claws at Mr. Wolf’s face once freed.
  • Character Development: Throughout the series, the characters grow into their roles as heroes. Mr. Wolf is already starting his development as soon as the series starts, Mr. Shark and Mr. Piranha start it at the end of the book, and Mr. Snake, the most hesitant, takes a good chunk of the series to change, while also lapsing back the most.
  • Cliffhanger: Many of the books end in a cliffhanger that preps for the next book in the series.
  • Comfort Food: Mr. Piranha's go-to comfort food is beef and bean burritos. He has a tendency to make them in mass amounts and scarf them down in times of stress.
  • Contagious Heroism: This is how Mr. Wolf manages to convince the others to stay on the side of good.
  • Couch Gag: Starting with "Mission Unpluckable", a logo that sports "BG" for "Bad Guys" shows up at the very front of the books. Each book follows a pattern of Mr. Wolf attempting to replace the B with a G, while Mr. Snake destroys the efforts.
  • Cultural Translation: The illustrations are actually redrawn to fit the culture of the released location, such as the position steering wheels are in cars or the style of wall outlets.
  • Cunning Like a Fox: Agent Fox, a mysterious fox agent and member of the International League of Heroes, a secret organization of heroes that helps the others in situations. She's clever and brave, but it's hinted that she has a similar past to the main four as well.
  • Cute Is Evil: Dr. Rupert Marmalade, a billionaire mad scientist that also happens to be an adorable guinea pig. Despite being cute, he hates being called cute, to the point of using his scientific abilities to un-cutify anything else on the planet that's considered cute. It also turns out the guinea pig appearance is just a ruse, he's actually an alien that used it because he wouldn't be taken as seriously in it, though he was still considered "cute" by alien standards on his planet.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Mr. Snake, thanks to finding most of the plans ridiculous, spends plenty of time dryly commenting on them.
  • Disguised in Drag:
    • Mr. Wolf still holds onto the "granny" disguise from his evil past. The others point out that this disguised never worked.
    • Mr. Shark disguises himself as a little girl who lost her puppy in "The Bad Guys", much to his own irritation. This was his first disguise in the series, while also prepping him up to be the disguise guy for the team.
    • In "Mission Unpluckable", Mr. Shark uses a mother hen disguise to attempt to rally the clueless chickens to follow him.
    • In "Attack of the Zittens", it's surprisingly not Mr. Shark that's wearing a girl disguise (he's disguised as a dolphin). Instead, Mr. Piranha is disguised in a bikini and ponytailed wig as "Mindy", a pet goldfish, much to his extreme embarrassment.
    • In "Alien Vs Bad Guys", Mr. Shark once again puts on a female disguise, this time his approximation of a female version of the alien species that Dr. Marmalade truly is. Unfortunately, he has no idea what they actually look like, so this one fails.
  • Fedora of Asskicking: In "The Bad Guys", Mr. Wolf attempts to get the others to wear fedoras as part of their new looks, much to their annoyances. Mr. Snake gets rid of it because he hates it, Mr. Piranha really doesn't have a head to even wear it, and Mr. Shark ate his. Only Mr. Wolf keeps it, until a cat they rescued shredded it.
  • Friendly Neighborhood Spider: Legs is a kind and creative tarantula, and had already shifted to the side of good before he was introduced. Unfortunately for him, the stereotype that spiders are scary has dragged on for him. This was a heavy plot point in "Mission Unpluckable", where the others (primarily Mr. Shark) had to realize that yes, he means no harm, despite the fact he looks scary to them.
  • Frying Pan of Doom: Granny Gumbo isn't legally trained in the art of milking snakes. However, knocking them out with a frying pan is a viable option to her as well.
  • Fully Dressed Cartoon Animal: Agent Fox is the only major character to wear a full outfit, which consists of a jumpsuit and combat boots.
  • Furry Confusion: There are various oddities, such as sentient chickens and dogs that have farms and kennels treated as jails for them, respectively. Despite this, they’re treated as pets and food sources respectively still.
  • Furry Female Mane: Agent Fox has an extra ponytail, while the boys have no hair additions.
  • Furry Reminder:
    • Mr. Snake still can’t shake eating chickens.
    • Mr. Piranha has a large swarming family of over 900 thousand brothers.
  • Gasshole:
    • Mr. Piranha gets carsick easily, which often causes him to let a few rip inside them, much to the disgust and irritation of the other passengers.
    • This is taken to the extreme in "Intergalactic Gas", where Mr. Piranha overdoes it on stress eating beef and bean burritos.
  • Good Animals, Evil Animals: Wolves, sharks, snakes, and piranhas are blatantly categorized as “bad animals” in this world.
  • Good Feels Good: This is Mr. Wolf’s main goal, to get the others to admit this. They begrudgingly do at the end of the book, though Mr. Snake takes the longest to fully accept it.
  • Government Agency of Fiction: The International League of Heroes, an organization so secret that regular authorities don’t even know they exist.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: Mr. Piranha, being from the Amazon River, randomly adds Spanish words to his speech at times.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Mr. Snake's anger towards Agent Fox is purely because Mr. Wolf likes her, which he translates into Mr. Wolf liking her more than himself. He admits tho his jealousy, which he feels like is keeping him from fully becoming a good guy.
  • Hates Being Called Cute: Dr. Marmalade. He's a billionaire mad scientist who also happens to be an adorable guinea pig. Him being tired of called "cute" is what drove him to become an evil scientist in the first place. It turns out, by alien standards, this holds true of his actual form, a tentacled mess of stalks with butts for hands, which looks terrifying to the others.
  • Heel–Face Turn:
    • The four main characters’ plot starts when they attempt to go through one, Mr. Wolf in earnest, the others through force.
    • "Superbad" reveals this was also the case for The International League of Heroes, when they met each other and bonded through their troubles.
  • Hero with an F in Good: At the beginning of their quest to be good, the four were originally awful, as their old habits were hard to break.
  • I Am Not Weasel:
    • Mr. Piranha is often referred to as a “mutant sardine” by various news sources, much to his annoyance.
    • In "Attack of the Zittens", Granny Gumbo, thanks to senility, mistakes Mr. Snake for a worm and Mr. Wolf for a "mutt-dog".
  • Interspecies Romance: Mr. Wolf has a crush on Agent Fox.
  • I Want My Mommy!: Mr. Shark calls out for his mom in "Mission Unpluckable" when he first meets Legs.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Mr. Snake is insistent that he's unable to become a good guy. As such, he keeps a harsh and rude demeanor towards others, but deep down, he really wants to be a hero, and shows capabilities at times. Slowly through the series, his heart of gold shows further and further, however.
  • Kent Brockman News: Starting with "Mission Unpluckable", the books have a prelude from "Channel 6 News", a news channel that discusses the plot of the previous book.
  • Last-Name Basis: Despite having “Mr.” to list their species’ surnames, the main four have a tendency to drop that and just refer to each other by their last name in situations.
  • Mad Scientist: Dr. Rupert Marmalade, an evil scientist hamster who is the main antagonist to the heroes and secretly an alien.
  • Massive Numbered Siblings: Mr. Piranha has 900,543 brothers. They fill up their own gang thanks to this.
  • Master of Disguise: Mr. Shark is the disguise guy of the team. To the audience, his costumes are flimsy thanks to his size and build, but he manages to fool anyone with them.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • One recurring background character is the title character of “Pig the Pug”, one of Aaron Blabey’s other book series.
    • Mr. Piranha is explicitly designed to resemble the characters of Blabey’s book “Piranhas Don’t Eat Bananas”.
  • Naked People Are Funny:
    • Legs is first introduced as a standard tarantula, which means he's wearing nothing. Not only does this freak Mr. Shark out even more than him just being a spider, it disgusts Mr. Snake and Mr. Piranha. Legs eventually takes their advice and gets some clothes: only a hat and shoes, his hairy butt's still out there.
    • Mr. Shark strips out of his suit for his dolphin disguise in “Attack of the Zittens”, because dolphins obviously aren’t known for wearing clothes. Mr. Piranha agrees to this point, but is still disturbed by it, while also accusing Mr. Shark of spending too much time with Legs.
  • Never Smile at a Crocodile: Granny Gumbo, despite being a bit senile, is still a capable witch doctor. She doesn't hide the fact that she's prepping to eat Mr. Snake as well (she thinks he's a worm).
  • Ninja: A mysterious ninja shows up to help Mr. Piranha and Legs rescue the others from Dr. Marmalade in "The Furball Strikes Back". Taking off the mask reveals the ninja as the introduction to Agent Fox.
  • Odd Name Out: Legs is the only member of the team to not be named after his species.
  • The One Who Wears Shoes: Legs, after complaints from the others on wearing nothing, gains a baseball cap and four pairs of tennis shoes, making him the only member of the heroes to actually wear shoes. Still no pants, despite that suggestion.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Mr. Shark's disguises are obvious to the audience, as he's a shark disguising as other animals or personas. Despite this, everyone else compliments his disguises.
  • Parental Abandonment: "Superbad" reveals that Agent Fox's parents were killed by hunters when she was a young girl.
  • Piranha Problem: Mr. Piranha, also known as the “Butt Biter”.
  • Playful Hacker: Legs is the tech person on the team, as his multiple legs let him quickly hack into computers, which he demonstrates with Mr. Snake’s criminal records, which are meant to be highly secured.
  • Plot Allergy: In "Attack of the Zittens", Granny Gumbo's allergy to "mutt-dogs" (which translates into being allergic to Mr. Wolf) ends up saving Mr. Snake after Granny Gumbo swallows him (due to thinking he was a worm).
  • Positive Friend Influence: Mr. Wolf's belief that the others have the capability for good helps fully sway them to the good side. It takes a while for Mr. Snake to fully embrace this.
  • Pounds Are Animal Prisons: The dog kennels are treated like a jail for stray dogs, including jumpsuits and separate cells.
  • Predators Are Mean: This is the main stereotype the four main characters are attempting to shake. It’s a rough thing for them to do, however. Mr. Snake especially has trouble shaking this role.
  • Reality Ensues: Despite being able to move on land with no water, Mr. Piranha, being a freshwater fish, is unable to swim in saltwater.
  • Reformed, but Rejected: Thanks to their original reputation, not many are willing to believe the main characters are actually good now, still thinking they're up to their bad ways, even with vouch from others. It takes a message sent from the moon in "Intergalactic Gas" right before turning off the Cute-Zilla ray to get the citizens to believe them.
  • Running Gag:
    • Mr. Piranha is always mistaken for a "mutant sardine".
    • Someone will compliment Mr. Shark at being "so good at disguises", which he'll simply respond with "I know.".
  • Samus Is a Girl: Legs quickly mistakes the ninja that assists them in "The Furball Strikes Back" as a guy, when in reality it's Agent Fox.
  • Scatterbrained Senior: Granny Gumbo, despite being a powerful witch doctor, is a bit loopy thanks to age.
  • Snakes Are Sinister: Mr. Snake, who takes the longest to turn to the side of good.
  • Sour Supporter: Mr. Snake is the most apprehensive of the change to good.
  • Species Surname: Most of the characters, including the four main characters, have their species name as their last name. Some characters have unique last names instead.
  • Spiders Are Scary: Legs the tarantula manages to freak out the others (minus Mr. Wolf, who is already acquainted with him). Despite this, he’s already ground into being a hero, and quickly wins the others over.
  • Starfish Aliens: Dr. Marmalade’s true form is revealed as a tentacle alien with butts for hands.
  • Superhero Episode: The plot of "Superbad", thanks to a faulty time travel portal from Prehistoric times, giving the four of them superpowers.
  • Swallowed Whole:
    • Mr. Snake has swallowed both Mr. Piranha and a large amount of chickens alive at multiple times, being angrily flung around to get the eaten person out.
    • Mr. Wolf, in a fit of rage, has eaten Mr. Snake after being pestered too much, which led to...
    • ...Mr. Shark eating Mr. Wolf in the same rage (while Mr. Snake was still inside Mr. Wolf, he described the experience as like a "disgusting nesting doll". A heavy fall managed to knock the two out of him, however. He would later use this ability to hide the smaller members when needing to get into a location.
  • Tailfin Walking: Mr. Shark walks on his tail when not in the water. Mr. Piranha, on the other hand, simply drags himself around.
  • Terrestrial Sea Life: Mr. Piranha and Mr. Shark are able to walk on land with no breathing apparatus. Despite this, Mr. Piranha still can’t handle swimming in salt water.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil:
    • This is one of the reasons Mr. Snake insists that he can't be a true hero. He was seen as a bad guy to start, so he doesn't bother to change his reputation. This slowly starts to crack away throughout the series, as he becomes a truer hero.
    • "Superbad" reveals that the members of the The International League of Heroes were bad guys before they met each other, purely because others saw them like that to start, so they decided to fit the mold others saw them as.
  • They Look Like Us Now: Dr. Marmalade is revealed to be a mutant alien disguising himself as an Earth animal.
  • Threatening Shark: Mr. Shark, aka “Jaws”. He’s so dangerous, that his case file hardly even has any info on it, and has the most major warning.
  • Toilet Humor: The books are fairly rife with fart, butt, and poop jokes. It's not very predominant, but it's there.
  • Trademark Favorite Food:
    • Chickens for Mr. Snake, which made the mission to free chickens in “Mission Unpluckable” a difficult one for him.
    • Beef and bean burritos for Mr. Piranha. Even as his reputation as a “butt biter”, he still enjoys them, and has a tendency to make them when stressed, and then overeat them. The gas caused from eating too many of them ends up helping save the day in the book “Intergalactic Gas”.
  • Vegetarian Carnivore: Mr. Wolf attempts to get the others to become this, which they ignore.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Mr. Shark is originally terrified of spiders. Meeting Legs turns him into a shivering wreck, while having the tarantula land on his snout causes him to faint. He later befriends him, losing his fear and becoming the one to vouch for him the most.
  • Witch Doctor: Granny Gumbo, an elderly alligator living in the swamplands. Despite being a touch senile in her old age, she is the only one with the cure for the Zittens.
  • World of Funny Animals: The whole world is populated with anthropomorphic animals.
  • Women Are Wiser: Agent Fox is a much more seasoned, capable, and serious hero compared to the others. From what is seen of the rest of The International League of Heroes, which is shown with just women members, they are the same.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Mr. Wolf is insistent that Mr. Snake can change for the better, despite Mr. Snake's own denial of it.
  • Zombie Apocalypse:
    • ”Attack of the Zittens” has Dr. Marmalade turning all the kittens into the world into zombie kittens, or “Zittens”. While unable to turn others into zombies with a bite, they’ll still try to eat others.
    • At the end of the same book, once defeated, Dr. Marmalade ends up zapping the entire earth, which turns every single kitten, puppy, pony, bunny, and dolphin in the world into a zombie. This sets up the plot of the book “Intergalactic Gas”.

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