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Bob Ross Rib

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"And we'll add a happy cartoon...and a Heroic Comedic Sociopath...and a...well...he's painting a pretty pony. That's very nice."L - R, top to bottom 

"Hello my happy little viewers, hello. As you recall last time, we did a happy little painting on the happy little Ghostbusters. You all seem to like this one and I don't blame you, its a wonderful piece. So today, we're going to do a happy little follow-up to this happy little picture, because you like it so much, you deserve to see it explored even more... except for the parents, you didn't care for the swearing and the smoking, so uh this one we're going to make it more family-friendly."
The Nostalgia Critic (review of Ghostbusters II), The Nostalgia Critic

Much like Fred Rogers, Bob Ross of The Joy of Painting became famous through the medium of public television and quickly gained traction as an icon for his calm, wholesome Nice Guy personality, contagious optimism, and educational premise. People all over would use episodes on his television show both as art teacher and meditation tool. Having ascended to meme-status over the years, Bob Ross as an icon became popular and eventually codified various tropes found on this very website.

And with that said, popularity breeds imitation. His bohemian dress, perm haircut and the general visual aesthetic of his show is often parodied to death in happy little comic books, happy little movies, even other happy little television shows, all adopting his happy little tone and happy little catchphrases.

Sub-Trope of Fountain of Expies and Stock Parodies. Related to Funny Afro (the "character dons an afro wig for a quick gag" variant). Compare Artsy Beret, the other image of artists in media.


God bless

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    Comic Books 

    Comic Strips 
  • A The Far Side cartoon features a woman painting along with a Bob-Ross type instructor talking about happy little trees, however a tree has smashed through her house, hitting her.
  • One Foxtrot strip has Jason attempt YouTube stardom by imitating Bob Ross, only with math problems.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • Ralph Breaks the Internet: In the montage of videos Ralph creates to accumulate money, one of the videos he makes is a parody of Bob Ross, including a black background, his iconic perm, a brush and canvas and relaxed expression.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In one of the promotional materials for Deadpool 2, Deadpool himself does a parody of Bob Ross, wearing his iconic clothes and perm over his form-fitting red spandex. As he paints, he gives the same relaxed delivery as he paints, but since this is Deadpool doing it, his words are far from family-friendly. Even when he is whacking the brush against the leg of the easel (something Bob was himself prone to do) he does it as an allusion to masturbation.
    Deadpool: Sweet baby Jesus. Wish I could just jump in there, roll around in all that cascading white powder. Yeah, just get high on all of life's splendor. God, I love cocaine.

    Live-Action TV 
  • One of Mexican comedian Eugenio Derbez's sketches on his TV shows consisted of this, as "Bob Atros". His parody had the added element of Hong Kong Dub, as the dub of The Joy of Painting in Spanish was notorious for paying little or no attention to lip-synching.
  • Mad TV had "Drawing with Jerry", in which the artist increasingly suffers a Creator Breakdown over a nasty divorce, which affects the nature of his drawings and ultimately leads to his show getting swiftly pulled off the air.
  • The Dutch sketch comedy show Koefnoen did a parody of Bob Ross where he paints a person instead of a landscape (which the real Bob Ross strongly disliked). At one point, he even uses his hair as a makeshift brush.

  • The music video for The Stupendium's "Rogue's Gallery" has the Stupendium dress up as Bob Ross at one point; in-universe, it's part of a Bob Ross box set that Crazy Redd had purchased.


    Web Animation 
  • In the "Mind Freakers" episode of Camp Camp, David and Gwen are too spaced out from a "Rob Boss" video to notice that the situation has gone too far (again). Miles Luna voiced both David and Rob in this episode (see the "Web Video" folder below).
  • An Easter Egg in the Toons menu on Homestar Runner shows a clip of Marzipan painting a picture while dressed up as Bob Ross, complete with afro wig and goatee.

    Web Comics 
  • One of the shows Leviathan watches in Belzebubs is The Joy of Pain-Things by Belzebob Ross. It's basically a Bob Ross Expy wearing corpse paint depicting damned souls being tormented by demons on canvas.
    Belzebob Ross: [wacks his brush against the easel] There we go, just shake off the excess and beat the Jesus out of it.
  • In Weak Hero, a bearded teacher with a distinctive afro and positive attitude is seen tutoring the class that Eugene signs up for in cram school. It's then revealed in separate instances that his name is Mr. Ross and Bob.

    Web Original 
  • In the Thunder and Friends episode "Mom's the Word", Cody dresses up like Bob Ross in art class, while trying to get his mom to stop bugging him.

    Web Videos 

    Western Animation 
  • All Hail King Julien: In "The King Julien Show", Mort has a show where he paints pictures of King Julien's feet while wearing an afro.
  • Back at the Barnyard has one first appear in a TV show in "Pig Amok", then appear as a background character.
  • In The Boondocks episode "Riley Wuz Here", Riley gets art lessons from an unnamed painter who looks and acts like an expy of Bob Ross, albeit with blond hair.
  • Creature Comforts: In the American version's art episode, a gorilla makes a subtle Take That! to Bob Ross.
    Gorilla: Hi, the happy squirrel, were going to make some happy clouds. Were going to take the big fanning brush, let's mix a little umber, a little yellow, a little orchard a little blue. Okay, stroke stroke stroke stroke.
  • The Dilbert episode "Art" begins with a Bob Ross figure named Rusty Shanks teaching Dilbert, Dogbert and Ratbert about modern abstract art. However, in the middle of his show, he's abducted due to his inability to pay back loans he owes. He's eventually revealed to have been beheaded by a mafia-style group headed by Leonardo da Vinci, who controls the world's fine art business.
  • In the Doug episode "Doug's a Genius", Doug's art teacher gushes over how wonderful his paintings are. Doug then imagines himself as Bob Ross, using "Prussian Blue" and "Titanium White" to paint a lake in a matter of seconds.
  • In an early episode of Family Guy, Peter is watching Bob Ross while learning to paint himself. This Bob Ross is a bit of a psycho as he adds a little bush and then tells the audience, "If you ever tell anyone that that bush is there, I will come to your house and I will cut you." Peter then complains how his painting doesn't look anything like Ross'. We are then shown that he painted a picture of the cast of Family Ties.
  • In one episode of Mission Hill, Andy, Jim, and Poesy are all watching Bob Ross, but act like they're watching a big sporting event. Highlights include Andy eagerly telling Ross to use his fan brush, and when Ross tries to think of what to put next, Andy excitedly says "A happy little tree! A happy little tree!"
  • In the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic episode "What About Discord?", Discord twice takes on the appearance of Bob Ross to explain himself, at one point using Ross's frequent "happy little" language, in order to literally "paint her a picture".
  • In the beginning of one Pinky and the Brain episode, Bob Ross is seen on the TV adding a meteor to a painting. This meteor would be important later.
  • Rainbow Butterfly Unicorn Kitty: "Anubis Newbie" features a scene where Felicity is seen painting a kitten. She even parodies the line "let's paint ourselves a happy little tree".
  • In the Regular Show episode "Bad Portrait", Mordecai's inspiration Benny Harris is a thinly-veiled Ross parody.


Video Example(s):


How to Draw with Tenacious D

Tenacious D does their own rendition of The Joys of Painting as promotional material for Post-Apocalypto.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (7 votes)

Example of:

Main / BobRossRib

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