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  • The Makeover: Seen more than once in weird non-standard forms:
    • Zii makes some rather erratic attempts to smarten Gary up after she's promised to improve his prospects with women. Notably, the bonus strips with the first print collection show her attempting to improve his wardrobe. (It doesn't take.)
    • New character Tracy provides a makeover — or at least a dramatically new hairstyle — for the Gonk-ish Eulice, of all people. Actually, as 80-something gargoyles go, She Cleans Up Nicely, especially because she looks unusually happy with the change. It even makes her slightly less cranky.
    • When Matt inveigles Gary into a sexual foursome, he prepares by attempting to spruce Gary up considerably, including manscaping, an enema, and a complete change of clothes.
  • Making Love in All the Wrong Places:
    • Matt appears to be very fond of using the sofa in any residence where he gets the chance, even if a perfectly good bed is available. He also persistently neglects to lock the door. His story seems to be that he enjoys spontaneity, but it looks like he really gets off on the risk of getting caught.
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    • In the print volume 3 bonus strips, Zii and Sonya eventually progress from heavy make-outs to oral sex in the backroom of the restaurant where Sonya works as a waitress. (The strip in question eventually appeared as the "guest" strip for November 30, 2013; NSFW, strangely enough.)
    • Coincidentally, Zii also has sex with Amber in the backroom of the comics shop where she works.
    • Senna and Gary have drunken sex on an aircraft — specifically, on a private jet while the cabin crew are around. Senna gets quite annoyed when they tell her to sit down and buckle up for landing. Later, after Gary dumps her, she is glimpsed apparently having rebound sex with the pilot of the same plane, presumably either on the ground or while the co-pilot is at the controls.
    • See also Naughty Under the Table.
  • Manga Effects: Giz is known to have an interest in manga, and while this comic is mostly drawn in a realistic western style, it includes some distinctly manga-style touches. See, e.g., Luminescent Blush or Sweat Drop.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: The plot and style of this comic mean that this trope is bound to appear and recur quite frequently, but simply because it is such a natural part of the story so much of the time, it ends up being deconstructed, perhaps accidentally.
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    • Zii is the primary candidate for the role, and it's likely a large part of her self-image. She shakes up the lives of Gary, Sonya, Angele, and to a lesser extent DiDi, and it's clear that Erik sees her very much as some kind of manic pixie fantasy. However, her manic pixie actions eventually have consequences, largely in the form of Sonya, who becomes infatuated with her; there are hints that her past relationship with Yuki may have followed a similar path. And as she herself says, not only could you form a rock band (complete with management) out of her exes and people who she's hurt, that actually happens. She also starts to suffer emotional twinges at the sight of her past conquests apparently moving on with their lives.
    • Gary is practically manic pixie bait, attracting not only Zii (as a friend) but also the dangerously deranged Yuki, the ditzy Sonya (briefly), and the narcissistic Senna. However, although he's the sort of man who dreams of having a manic pixie make his life more interesting, he has two problems; first, none of those girls get the trope quite right, but second and more seriously, he seems to be totally incapable of learning the sort of life lessons that a Manic Pixie Dream Girl is supposed to teach.
  • A Man Is Always Eager: Well, both sexes tend to be reliably eager; it's that sort of Sex Comedy. But, notably, Gary's response to discovering that he's been tricked into giving Amber oral sex is "I AM TOTALLY OKAY WITH THIS SITUATION!!!" (Strip #495, September 3 2011, NSFW). Okay, she is his favorite porn star...
  • Manly Tears: He sure misses the good times.
  • Marshmallow Hell is often a serviceable joke in this kind of semi-slapstick Sex Comedy. Some examples:
  • Masculine–Feminine Gay Couple: The Camp Gay Dillon (who subsequently demonstrates the trope further in his own comic) is paired up with the bisexual (and rather metrosexual), well-toned and hunky Matt.
  • Master of the Mixed Message:
  • The Matchmaker is a role at which nobody in this comic ever excels, but that doesn't stop them trying:
    • Early on, Zii volunteers to play Cupid for Gary. Unfortunately, she apparently keeps forgetting about this. Her one serious effort, introducing him to Sonya, is also intended to help Sonya find a new relationship — probably well-meant, but also serving the double purpose of getting the increasingly infatuated Sonya off Zii's neck. (Which doesn't work out too well.) Later, as Gary stumbles into various relationships largely by accident, Zii evidently decides that her help is no longer needed — until the night when she realises that Gary is currently unattached, and resolves to help DiDi get him. Which also doesn't work out as intended.
    • Sonya, very drunk, slightly irritated, and maybe bored because her attempts to seduce Erik are going nowhere, gets talking to Peggy, who's just dumped her boyfriend Jim, and promptly decides to help Peggy's love life by introducing her to Gary, on the logical basis that Peggy wants cunnilingus and that's the one thing that Sonya knows Gary is good for. Funnily enough, this is the same night as Zii decides to bring Gary and DiDi together, as mentioned above. In the end, it turns out that Gary isn't home, and things kind of go downhill from there.
    • Peggy, being kept awake every night by Sonya talking in her sleep about her soap-operatic issues with Zii, decides in sleep-deprived desperation to solve the problem by bringing the pair together properly. Unfortunately, she perhaps misunderstands the nature of Sonya and Zii's actual relationship, and decides that an Operation: Jealousy scheme will do the trick. Hilarity Ensues — although as it turns out, Peggy may be the most competent social manipulator in the comic, and sort-of pulls this off for a while, before things go bad.
  • Metaphorgotten:
    Gary: Trolling's a fishing term. It means to lure a fish in with bait. He baited you until you bit, and then you were hooked, which got you caught, and then you were banned like a halibut.
  • Mile-High Club:
    • In a guest strip (August 2 2010, between #333 and #334, NSFW), Dillon claims to have joined it ... in the cockpit.
    • After having sex with Senna on a private jet, Gary asks if they've joined the club. (Strip #780, August 20th 2013, NSFW funnily enough. And the answer would be "yes"; penetration occurred, and although the aircraft was on its landing approach before they really finished, they must have been at least a mile high when they started.)
    • Subsequently, on the rebound from Gary, Senna is seen (strip #821, December 03, 2013, NSFW) having sex with one of the crew on that same aircraft. Altitude at the time unstated.
  • Milholland Relationship Moment: Zii confesses to Gary that he broke his rare Transformers figure ... which he immediately puts back together, good as new.
  • Mistaken for Gay: A joke plot that might well appear more often in this comic if so many of the characters weren't bisexual...
    • Amber thinks Gary is gay when he comes to her and Dillon's apartment so that the latter can teach him more about his Swirly-Go-Round kissing technique (mostly because of Dillon's unreliable descriptions of Gary). This changes to "bi-curious" when Gary mentions that he wants to use the swirly with girls, and she decides to trick him into doing it on her.
    • In a compounded version of the joke, Tess assumes that both DiDi and Zii are lesbians (rather than bi) because that's all she's seen of their behavior. She then deduces that Gary must be gay, because, she says, a straight guy would have masturbated himself to death living with two such hot lesbians.
  • Mistaken for Servant: When Gary and new character Isabelle bring a drunken Zii home to the apartment, Isabelle, who has a delusional impression of Zii's level of rock stardom, decides that if Gary lives there but isn't in a relationship with Zii, he must be Zii's butler.
  • Mistaken Identity: It's a comedy...
    • Amber inexplicably assumes that DiDi is Gary's abusive girlfriend "Yuki" when she meets them, then leaves before this can be clarified. This is cleared up later, though, with only a few minor comedy consequences along the way.
    • Due to some minor confusion in a club, Peggy thinks that Matt is Gary, who Sonya has suggested she seduce. As a result, they end up in bed together — to Peggy's entire satisfaction, even when she discovers the mistake, but with more stressful results for Matt.note 
    • For various reasons, Gary wants to give his new boss Yvan the idea that he (Gary) is an expert at picking up women, and Zii suggests a plan whereby she will pretend not to know Gary but to be impressed by him. Unfortunately, the indie music bar she suggests as a venue for this turns out to be full of women who share her fashion sense.
  • Moby Schtick: Kiley suffers a rather strange dream in strip #914 (July 31, 2014, NSFW).
  • Modesty Bedsheet: Actually mostly averted for much of the comic's run, with the art being quite relaxed about bare breasts. However, around 2015, the creators reduced the level of explicitness in an attempt to increase advertizing revenues, leading to a particularly egregious instance of the trope in this strip, with a sheet of apparently limitless extent shifting around arbitrarily to avoid exposed nipples.
  • Moment Killer: Something of a standard feature for a Sex Comedy — even one like this one, where people do actually fairly often succeed in having sex. For example...
    • In early strips, it seemed to verge on a Running Gag that Zii is prone to constantly — and usually unintentionally — cockblocking Gary.
    • Sonya arrives (due to Zii trying to throw Gary a boner) just as Yuki is volunteering to model at least topless for him.
    • It seems at one point that everything in the world is conspiring to keep Matt from giving DiDi a toe-curling orgasm, from nosy roommates to Japanese girls afraid of penises and accidents with chilli sauce.
    • Yuki and Sonya challenge each other to seduce each other, despite the fact that (a) they're already having semi-regular sex, and (b) they can't actually stand each other. (It's a long story.) This leads to some almost-deliberate moment killers...
      Yuki ICK! I have that same pair of panties at home! Guess I'll have to burn them now!
    • And when Zii and Matt have sex, Matt contrives to kill the moment because Zii suddenly reminds him of Kiley, with whom he's recently broken up, so that he breaks down in Inelegant Blubbering.
  • Most Writers Are Writers: Gary is a wannabe comics artist, and Yuki is a wannabe comics writer (and the daughter of a manga creator), and sometimes collaborates with him. On top of that, Yuki, Zii, and Sonya are in a band — and Giz used to be a professional musician. (Sonya, the band's bass player, even looks a bit like Giz, who played bass.)
  • Mr. Fanservice: Most of the males in the strip are good-looking and get their shirtless scenes.
    • Even Gary, supposedly a total geek, is usually described as cute by both other characters and readers, with or without a shirt. His bleary eyes and bed hair when he woke up in Paris for the first time (strip #783, August 27 2013, borderline NSFW) inspired some comments on the comic's discussion boards.
    • Domenico Pedrazzini verges on a parody of the trope.
  • My Girl Is a Slut: Erik seems to be quite attracted by Zii's history of free-spirited promiscuity (see. e.g., strip #738, May 07, 2013, NSFW), although he maybe thinks more about her lesbian adventures, and he apparently wants or prefers her to be monogamous now.
  • Naked Apron: Something of a favorite gag/sexy effect in this comic:
    • Dillon wears one for Zii (strip #154, May 22, 2009, NSFW).
    • One strip (#191, August 17, 2009, NSFW) has Matt wearing one for Sandra, though the badminton racket might be a partial motivator there too.
    • DiDi wears one during her date with Sandra (starting with strip #431, March 28, 2011, NSFW).
    • Peggy employs one while trying to make Zii jealous over Sonya (strip #835, January 09, 2014, NSFW).
  • Naked People Are Funny: While the quite frequent nudity in this comic is largely a mixture of Fanservice and a fairly realistic depiction of people having sex, it is sometimes used for flat-out comedy, especially when someone walks in on the frequently confused DiDi or the frequently embarrassed Gary.
  • Naughty Nurse Outfit:
    • Worn by a stripper (not a real nurse!) in strip #184 (July 31 2009, NSFW).
    • In a 2015 bonus story associated with a Kickstarter (previewed here), some female cast members show up in "medical" outfits that show unprofessional amounts of cleavage, or more. However, this is a dream sequence.
    • Peggy, a nurse who is usually depicted in realistic scrubs when on duty in the comic, is shown in a blatant naughty nurse outfit on the cover of the print collection volume 7. However, this doesn't represent anything that actually happens within the story.
    • Gary ends up in such an outfit in the course of one print volume bonus story. Poor Gary.
  • Naughty Tentacles: Sometimes invoked, mostly for comedy, but also as part of a character’s defining back-story:
    • Yuki's father is renowned for his work creating hentai containing these. It helped cause Yuki's issues.
    • Yuki thus has a dream where she sees Gary as a female tentacle monster.
    • There's also Gary's earlier Dream Sequence (January 10, 2009).
  • Naughty Under the Table: Yuki and Gary take this to the extreme when she insists that he use the Swirly-Go-Round on her while they are in a restaurant.
  • Nipple and Dimed: A rarity among webcomics, this one actually contains a fair bit of nudity, including nipples (and areola, which is even rarer). It still uses a Scenery Censor or Speech-Bubble Censoring to hide anything full frontal, however.
    • In fact, the trope was played straight early on; only later did the authors decide it was too much work and start showing nipples. You wouldn't notice going through the archives though, as they edited away some of the more dubious instances of censorship.
    • However, later strips (from around 2015 on) dial back on the bare breasts in an invoked acknowledged attempt to recover some more advertising revenue. The amount of (mildly) unconventional sex going on in many of those same strips makes this quite ironic; advertisers apparently don't mind characters having masked bisexual foursomes, so long as you can't see the women's nipples.
    • Then, Giz went through those strips for publication in the print collections and restored those nipples which should have been visible all along. She must have spent quite some time replacing Censor Suds and such with nipples.
  • No Bisexuals: Despite the Everyone Is Bi effects mentioned above, some of the characters seem to think that this trope applies, sometimes in defiance of all the evidence.
    • Dillon classes himself as gay, even though he does stuff like rolling around naked with Zii, and he slept with two girls back in high school.
      Dillon: ...but that was a threesome, so it only counts as one!
      • We do see this "threesome" later in the comic, and it's not as impressive it sounds.
      • Also, note that he rolls naked with Zii ... in a pile of photos of naked guys. His pictures, that were wrinkled from him doing this so much. So really, yes, he's gay.
    • DiDi doesn't seem aware of the concept of bisexuality until Zii sets her strai— explains it to her.
    • ...And she in turn later mentions it to the obviously bisexual Sonya, who latches onto it briefly because it allows her to be in love with Zii without being a lesbian.
  • No Name Given: Some of the cast's surnames remain persistently unrevealed. This doesn't seem to be a matter of systematic secrecy; it's just that characters are usually referred to by their first names or nicknames, except in situations where their surnames would just naturally be used. See the Characters page for individual examples.
  • Non-Nude Bathing: Justified when the bisexual Zii finds herself developing an obsessive sexual crush on Innocent Fanservice Girl DiDi, which is unnerving for both of them. Zii comes up with a simple solution; DiDi just can't get naked, ever, in case it drives Zii crazy. She'll even have to shower in swimsuits. The first problem with this turns out to be that DiDi isn't much less desirable in her choice of swimsuits than she is naked...
  • Noodle Implements: In strip #161 (June 08, 2009; NSFW), Matt suggests to Sandra that they have a sexual encounter including a badminton racket, Tabasco sauce and Paddington Bear. Funnily enough, the first two of these do appear in later strips, as does a Paddington Bear-style hat — and all in sexual situations.
  • No Sparks: After DiDi receives an unusually passionate kiss from Zii and a totally spark-free kiss from Gary, she naturally concludes that she's a lesbian. Eventually, Zii feels obliged to tell her that Gary is a clueless virgin, so her problem was with him rather than with men in general.
  • Not a Date: When Sandra offers to take DiDi out for a dinner as friends, she interprets it as a date. Sandra, who is unaware that DiDi has a crush on her, doesn't catch on, even when she learns that they will go to a romantic restaurant; she thinks that DiDi has "so few female friends, she thinks girls' night outs are like her regular dates". When DiDi kisses her at the end, she's utterly shocked.
  • Not What It Looks Like:
    • On her first appearance, Yuki sits astride Gary's face and then get handcuffed to him. That part isn't his fault; admittedly, he does then deliberately grope her breast while she's unconscious, but he's honestly convinced that she must be a figment of his imagination at the time. Then he finds himself lying on top of her, panting, just as she recovers consciousness. Much of this happens in public, but the real problem is Yuki's psychotic issues; this incident almost gets Gary killed.
    • Another spectacular case occurs in the strip #671 (November 13, 2012, NSFW). When Chanelle walks into a room to discover Amber and Gary both naked, and Dillon also present (but dressed), she instantly concludes that Amber must have got back into porn work. (Don't ask about the absence of cameras or film crew.) This probably wouldn't matter much, if she didn't also instantly volunteer to serve as Gary's fluffer, and start acting on the offer.
    • Later again, the trope is played with when Matt and Peggy encounter DiDi and Kiley in a motel corridor. Kiley and Matt are sort of in a relationship of sorts, and Kiley and DiDi were both previously regarded as probably straight, but to be fair, everyone has an excuse of sorts at this point. Still, despite Kiley's Motor Mouth blathering, the fact is, everything is almost exactly what it looks like.
  • Ocular Gushers
    • Yuki finds Gary at his job and drags him off to work on their doujin. Unfortunately for Gary's coworker (and possibly Gary himself), it sounds like Gary has this three-girl harem going on.
    • Yuki does this herself when she can't bring herself to seduce either Gary or Zii despite being very much in the mood.
  • Oh, Crap!:
  • Oh, No... Not Again!: DiDi has a recurrent problem...
    • When Amber can't resist checking out if her breasts are really not implants:
      Sandra: Does this happen often?
      DiDi: Surprisingly, oui.
    • Later, Sonya does indeed do much the same thing, even more flagrantly (strip #676, November 24, 2012, NSFW). And for that matter, so does Kiley, for very slightly different reasons. DiDi continues to permit this with very little protest.
  • Old Shame: Occurs in-universe.
    • Gary feels this way about his past as an internet troll.
    • Zii suffers at least a brief twinge of guilt when she recalls her past borderline-Casting Couch approach to recruitment for her band, and hastily changes the subject (strip #605, May 24, 2012, somewhat NSFW).
  • Omake: Occasional guest strips depict (generally non-canonical) incidents, in the comic's early days, some material appeared on pay site Slipshine with more explicit full-frontal nudity and sexual situations, the print collections regularly feature one new story or "What if?" filling a half-dozen or so pages, other such short pieces have been published in PDF form as the result of stretch goals being met when Kickstarter has been used to fund those same print collections, and the creators have also produced a couple of figurines of cast members and some stickers and other spin-off mementos.
  • One Degree of Separation:
    • Gary meets Zii and DiDi, who thus meet Gary's old roommates Matt and Dillon, and then Gary meets Yuki who is Zii's stalker and who ends up liking him, DiDi works with Sandra who becomes Matt's girlfriend and then Dillon becomes roommates with Amber who happens to be Gary's favorite porn star and then Sandra and Gary meet Senna who is Matt's friend and then Erik who is DiDi's ex-boyfriend falls in love with Zii and then Gary performs oral sex on Amber and Sonya who Zii seduced is set up to date Gary in competition with Yuki so together they decide to three-way him but Yuki needs to deal with her tentacle/penis fear and gets Kiley to help her which leads Gary to meet Kiley when Yuki leaves her phone lying around and oh no, I've gone cross-eyed ... and then Kiley jumps Gary ...
    • ... and Zii was Amber's first lover in high school, and at some point bagged Jerzy. And Sandra goes to Brazil with Senna and then to Paris, where Gary and Senna encounter her, while Kiley meets Matt at a ranch which may or may not be Erik's family place, and Sonya meets Peggy and tries to introduce her to Gary but Peggy ends up in bed with DiDi instead before she begs couch space for a few nights from Sonya and then accidentally targets Matt.
    • And Yuki says something that causes DiDi to ask Kiley for therapy, which gets downright weird.
    • Meanwhile, over in Sticky Dilly Buns, Dillon sometimes dates Jerzy, who has slept with Angel, who is Zii's old musical partner turned bitter rival when she too seduced Jerzy...
  • Onee-sama: Challenged to seduce Sonya deliberately after they've already been having hate-sex for a while, manga fan Yuki asks for permission to address her by this term — appropriately enough in that Sonya is the taller of the two. Sonya has to have the term explained, so the trope is very briefly Discussed.
  • One Steve Limit:
    • Averted by the presence of Sandra, Sonya, and Senna. (And a Suzi, but everyone calls her "Zii".)
    • There are also two Adriens, but one only appears in one strip, and the other is also a minor character.
    • And an Angèle (a very minor character) and an Angel (a crossover character).
    • However, the limit is later enforced belatedly after one strip introduced a new character named "Jim" when that name had already been used once. In the next strip, the new Jim is addressed as "James", and the tags attached to both strips were changed accordingly. (Actually, there had already been a James in the comic, but he only appeared in flashbacks and was only referred to fleetingly by name, so this wasn’t a problem.)
  • One Thing Led to Another: The comic skims briskly from Sonya realising that she’s going on a date with Zii (while denying loudly to Ally that she’s a lesbian) to Zii and Sonya in bed together (with Sonya still denying away). How Zii managed the seduction is never made clear, though Sonya is clearly far less straight by inclination than she ever wants to admit.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname:
    • Zii notes in an early strip that her real name is Suzi, but nobody ever calls her that. Strictly speaking, "Zii" is just a contraction of Suzi, but it's unusual enough to count. Her last name is only revealed much later.
    • Everybody calls DiDi solely by that nickname — except Sandra, who usually calls her Desirée. Again, "DiDi" is a sort of contraction of her real name, but it's both slightly unusual and highly descriptive.
    • A one-character-only version; Yuki originally referred to Gary solely as "Violator-San". However, after he gave her flowers (made out of Mushrooms and drum sticks), she started calling him by his real name. Or not.
  • Only Sane Man:
    • Junghan and Amber have both played this part. However, Junghan never became as well-established a cast member as was probably intended, while Amber has her own eccentricities, and anyway she later mostly moved to the spinoff comic, Sticky Dilly Buns. Allie sometimes looks like an only sane woman when she's talking to her colleague Sonya.
    • Gary might be this if he wasn't so often the Butt-Monkey and/or the Accidental Pornomancer. However, he has his own issues that might exclude him from the role anyway.
    • New character Peggy demonstrates how this trope is performed. A little later, in the May 09, 2013 strip (#739, NSFW), she perhaps realises that she's got the job. Her first scenes (including dumping a bowl of pasta over her boyfriend's head in the course of breaking up with him) suggest a degree of flakiness of her own, but by the standards of the comic, she seems to be a beacon of sanity.
  • Operation: Jealousy: One is executed with uncommon skill — indeed, with manipulative genius by the usual standards of this comic — by Peggy on behalf of Sonya, under the name ''Operation "Hey, Jealous Zii."'' Unfortunately, she's running on flawed prior intelligence, but her plan may work even so; she wants to get Sonya and Zii together, and Zii proves susceptible to her mind games. Weirdly, all Peggy actually wants is to improve Sonya's love life enough that Sonya stops having loud soap-operatic dreams, because they're currently platonically sharing a bed, and Sonya is keeping Peggy awake. (Peggy may also feel that she's working off a debt of gratitude to Sonya.) Switching Sonya's bass guitar for a snow shovel, pulling off a naked apron show, and baking high-quality cupcakes, are all far less zany elements to the scheme than they sound. The only snag, apart from her unreliable prior information, is that she has to work with Sonya.
  • Orphaned Punchline: "And then Gary comes out of the bathroom... wearing only a jar of pickles!" (Strip #458, May 30, 2011, NSFW.)
  • Orwellian Retcon: See Scenery Censor.
  • Painted-On Pants: Most of the female characters (and for that matter, several of the male characters) wear tight-fitting clothes from time to time, if only by way of Fanservice; Sonya is perhaps the primary exponent of the style. Two of the stage costumes that Jung designs for "Zii and the Troublemakers" certainly respect the trope.
  • Painting the Medium: A technique occasionally present, in about as discreet a form as in most comic strips. The presence of a Stat Meter measuring Zii’s libido (a Libid-o-Meter?) reflects some video game influence.
  • Pair the Smart Ones: At one point at least, Matt and Kiley appear to be fumbling their way towards a somewhat serious relationship, despite their shared Selective Obliviousness to the fact. This may be related to the fact that they are among the few characters in the comic with some level of social intelligence, and an interest in and willingness to talk to other people (and listen to what the other person says).
  • Pair the Suitors: While "romantic" is a bit of a stretch, after Yuki and Sonya's disastrous competition for Gary's affection and after they have also served as rivals for Zii, the two of them realize that they have more fun with their rivalry and have a long period where they just keep egging each other on for hate sex.
  • Panty Shot: Gary gets one, followed by the predictable (for him, at that time) reaction.
  • Parallel Porn Titles: Perry Hotter, Part 16, Kim Pussyble and Spank Her, She's French-Canadian (both November 13, 2012, NSFW), Boobarella (September 29, 2012, NSFW), Elizabeth And Veroniqe XXX Part 12, Sabrina the Barely Legal Witch. The first is a gay porn film, the second and third feature Chanelle, Boobarella involves both her and Amber, and the last two are again part of Amber's body of work.
  • Parental Abandonment: Almost seems to be the norm in this comic. Logically, most of the cast of twentysomething characters would be expected to have living parents, and occasionally to talk to them, visit, receive visits from family, or whatever. But the only cast members with whom the subject has been raised are Gary, who describes himself as having escaped an oppressive religious upbringing and who receives a 'phone call from his (actually perfectly pleasant-sounding) mother at one point, Sandra, who makes a very brief reference to a visit by her mother, and Amber, whose parents are said in passing to be wealthy doctors, and who has admitted that she hasn't yet been able to tell them about her porn career. (In the spinoff comic Sticky Dilly Buns, her sister has shown up, and her lack of communication with their parents has become a minor plot point — though Amber is said to be arranging to have dinner with them at one point.) The rest of them just seem to be floating free.
  • Pass the Popcorn:
  • Pinch Me:
    • When Gary wakes up handcuffed to Yuki, he deduces that he's dreaming, so he tries to wake himself up by supplying his brain with a sensation that it can't replicate from memory — groping her breast. Then he realizes that he's awake. This moment has Fridge Brilliance attached; he HAS groped breasts before, but not when he was awake — only when Zii and DiDi slept in his bed after he'd already passed out.
    • Later, Amber invokes the trope in a small way, to convince Gary that he's not just dreaming of her. Gary seems convinced, though he does point out a problem with the test in this case.
  • Pity Sex:
    • Lampshaded when DiDi decides to deflower the hopeless virgin Gary. Various mishaps prevent her from doing so; later, Zii explains to her that she shouldn't do that, because Gary would associate sex with being pathetic.
    • Much later, the trope is played straight by Peggy, who offers DiDi sex out of pity for the latter's failure ever to achieve orgasm.
    • Later again, Matt eventually succumbs to Yuki's repeated approaches, despite knowing that she may well become dangerously violent during sex, when she explains her hallucination problem, with which he sympathises.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Much of the plotting around the time of the band's first gig is built around this trope. For example, Kiley and Matt had an affair that included mutual therapy sessions in which each dealt with some problems they'd had with other people — without ever mentioning those people's names, which would have allowed them to discover that they had several shared acquaintances. Then they went to the gig and met those people. Likewise, DiDi and Peggy managed to have a conversation about the former's previous and current boyfriends, without ever mentioning their names, with hilarious results. If they could all use personal names a bit more often, life would be much easier for them.
  • Porn Names: Amber previously worked as Amber-Amber, and Chanelle is Chanelle Numberfine.
  • Porn Stash:
    • Gary has a substantial stash of videos — until he gets rid of them out of emotional confusion after meeting his favorite porn star, Amber, and coming to see her as a human being.
    • Zii and Dillon are more inclined to keep collections of photographs of sexy subjects that they've taken in real life, and aren't detectably embarrassed by this.
  • Porn with Plot/Porn Without Plot:
    • These twin tropes are discussed in this strip and the one immediately following; Gary and Zii agree that they prefer porn with plot (although Zii for one seems to be amused by the sheer badness of porn plots), while implicitly acknowledging that some doesn't have any.
    • The subject is later also evoked in gags about Amber's past career; some of her work seems to have had plots, if only because the references can be made funnier that way — see, e.g., strip #652 (September 29, 2012, NSFW).
  • Post-Kiss Catatonia:
    • Sandra, after DiDi unexpectedly kisses her.
    • And Dillon, after Gary kisses him (under threat of violence from Yuki, note).
    • Gary (now the victim), courtesy of Senna. (As she says, his life is better than a Brazilian Soap Opera.)
  • Power Trio:
    • While it may be trying too hard to fit this trope to the comic's central characters, the fact remains that the menage fits the Big, Thin, Short Trio pattern (DiDi, Gary, and Zii respectively), and has strong hints of the Freudian Trio, with Zii as the self-indulgent Id, DiDi as the undirected Ego, and Gary as the consciously moralistic Superego. (Or, perhaps, DiDi as the vital but unthinking Id and Zii as the relatively balanced Ego.)
    • Also, the band (eventually named "Zii and the Troublemakers" when they finally suddenly realise that they need a name) is a classic Rock Trio (qv.). It doesn't quite match other types of power trio, except perhaps a twisted version of With a Friend and a Stranger (Zii having very accidentally recruited her old friend Yuki and slightly newer problem Sonya).
  • Practice Kiss: Gary, who has never kissed a girl, asks his (Camp Gay) friend Dillon for help. Dillon obliges by offering a practice kiss while cosplaying as Gary's favorite porn star, Amber-Amber, to help Gary get over his gender. This gets strange when Gary actually meets Amber and mistakes her for Dillon, and she, to recreate the orgasm Dillon previously gave her (long story), blindfolds him so she can get him unknowingly "practising" between her legs.
  • Preacher's Kid: The sexy-diabolic version of the trope is briefly invoked by Zii (with an admixture of the Catholic School Girls Rule) before Gary shuts down that fantasy:
    Gary: Think an entire community committed to keep you from having sex. Telling you that everything you feel is distracting you from spiritual fulfillment.
    Zii: So no flirting with a hot-to-trot preacher's daughter? oo! In a short pleated skirt!
    Gary: All the girls my age seemed to delight in playing mind games with me.
  • Priceless Ming Vase: The rare Transformers figure that Zii breaks.
  • Prison Rape: When Gary is afraid that Yuki will turn him in for accidentally molesting her, he says to Dillon: "Just remember me fondly as I get butt-raped daily in jail."
  • Professionals Do It on Desks: Well, a table rather than a desk, but it’s still a horizontal work surface in a workplace... Zii makes use of the backroom in the comics shop while on a break to engage in some research with Amber. Fortunately for her, Jung is merely snarky about this, rather than shocked — which is only fair, as some time later, he turns out to have used that table himself, with Ramona.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: "Gary. Is. Mine." (Strip #611, June 09, 2012, NSFW.)
  • Punny Name: The title is a pun on menage a trois, roughly French for "threesome".
  • Put on a Bus: Or rather, a plane, to Brazil, which leaves at the end of volume 3:
    • Sandra is on that plane. Word of God had her probably set to come back to Montreal, but only after "several weeks". Given the short timeframe of the events in the strip, that always looked likely to take a while. In the end, after appearing in a few strips (mostly drawn by a guest artist), she got her own comic, Sandra on the Rocks. However, she reappears in the original comic in a crossover story starting at the very end of volume 5.
    • Likewise, Senna is on the same plane, and also appears in those guest strips. She has a promise of a date with Gary, and occasionally sends him letters (and boudoir photographs of herself) to remind him, but this date too is a long time coming. Then she reappears alongside Sandra, before a flashback reveals that she has specifically claimed that date, and she re-enters the main plot of the comic with a bang (so to speak).
  • Questionable Consent:
    • Everything involving Amber and Dillon's producer, Nathan, if only because he exploits his money and power so shamelessly. He certainly uses the Casting Couch to get sex, but the wannabe actors who fall for this aren't being flagrantly coerced. They are rather gullible, but so are a lot of this comic's cast.
    • Zii convinces two drunken straight men to perform an unspecified sexual act on each other; she talks about them "getting it on" the morning after, although Erik, at least, is anything but bothered. Zii also seems to have used borderline Casting Couch methods when recruiting musicians for her past bands, though as with Nathan above, the people who fell for that weren't actually being coerced.
    • Amber, thinking Gary is Dillon's boyfriend, and him thinking she's Dillon in a costume, blindfolds him and has him Practice Kiss her loins.
    • Senna has sex with Gary for the first time while he's very drunk (in strip #780, August 20 2013, NSFW). This can be considered more irresponsible than abusive (to be fair, she's pretty drunk herself), but he is quite far gone there.
  • Quiet Cry for Help: A comedy version appears when Kiley meets Peggy and Matt while being carried around by DiDi. The joke here is that DiDi is seeking medical help for the lightly injured Kiley — but Kiley wants to be saved from DiDi, having just done her a huge favor. DiDi can be terribly over-enthusiastic, and doesn't know her own strength.
  • Reaction Shot: Gary's appeal to three different women is illustrated through their reactions to his tactless gabbling.
  • Readings Are Off the Scale: Used as a graphical joke; over the course of a few strips where Gary and Zii are confiding intimately in each other, Zii's uncharacteristically-low libido is depicted on a scale in the lower-right corner, gradually rising. Gary offering to teach her his Swirly-Go-Round technique causes it to explode (in a way that might make this an instance of Readings Blew Up the Scale if there were real physical objects involved).
  • Ready for Lovemaking:
    • The trope is demonstrated in classic form by Sonya, with a bit of prior camouflage but an entirely NSFW execution, in strip #641 (September 04 2012).
    • DiDi’s idea of seduction technique — basically, taking her clothes off at her target — tends to fit the definition of the trope, too.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • See how Gary loses his virginity, and the resulting emotional fallout. Similarly, see Zii's failure as Gary's wing-girl.
    • Kiley's relationship with Matt. Using your partner to prove you're a better lover than the other guy will only make her leave you.
    • When the muscular and energetic Maura bowls Gary over when going for a kiss, it has consequences for him.
    • When Gary is more or less dragged into a threesome at the start of Chapter 10, he ends up going along with it out of obligation, but after things get really weird (James forcibly intervening in Tracy giving Gary a blowjob due to his issues, leading to what amounts to fighting over his manhood), Gary walks out on them because even an Extreme Doormat has a threshold for tolerating rampant idiocy that can be crossed, and won't stick around if it is.
  • Really Gets Around is more or less the default for major characters in this comic. Just for example:
    • Zii has been around and then some.
    • Dillon has (at least allegedly) been around almost as much as Zii, though not on-camera.
    • The trope gets a non-standard treatment with DiDi. Her harem of boyfriends runs into the dozens (none of whom satisfy her sexually), she may shrug and say "I've had him" at a male stripper in a randomly chosen club without surprising anyone — but she is in many ways the purest of all the major characters. If someone called her a slut as if it was an insult, she'd be extremely confused. And unfortunately for her, she doesn't come around.
    • After his break-up with Dillon, Matt seems to have a different partner every time we see him. He later gets into another slightly more stable relationship, but it doesn't last.
    • The same thing is strongly implied with Jordan.
    • Gary goes from shut-in virgin to harem comedy protagonist — and actually has sex with most of the women who become interested in him.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Matt is a sexual narcissist who harbors a pathological obsession to dominate the other person and cannot tolerate even the possibility that someone might be better than him at sex. Kiley says as much at the two last strips of the foursome arc.
  • Recurring Extra:
    • Various geeks are seen repeatedly at the comics store. One, Aaron, eventually gets a name and a few lines.
    • The guy who works at the desk next to Gary in his first job is usually a background figure, though he gets occasional speech and thought bubbles.
    • A cross-comics example; there is a French-speaking mother and daughter pair who are apparently also seen in Sandra on the Rocks in Paris, and in Sticky Dilly Buns; the young daughter has a talent for seeing embarrassing incidents, leading to very similar verbal exchanges each time.
  • Rejection Affection: Yuki's sexual pursuit of Matt, despite his flat refusal, is Played for Laughs for a couple of strips. He eventually succumbs out of pity when he discovers the nature of her problems, despite the fact that he's been refusing because he knows that she's likely to turn psychotically violent during sex.
  • Relationship Sabotage: Some characters in the comic aren’t above meddling with others’ romantic lives for their own purposes. Two notable instances:
    • Sonya sets out, rather ineptly, to break Zii away from Erik. That relationship does eventually come apart, though only partly and indirectly because of Sonya’s efforts.
    • Later, Lynn tries to separate DiDi from Zii — by the oddly honest method of telling DiDi that’s what she wants, while casually pointing out that the relationship might have practical problems when DiDi starts pursuing her wrestling career.
  • Relative Error: Zii makes this mistake and rapidly makes herself look like an idiot as a result. (She’s unused to monogamy.) Erik is sweetly understanding.
  • Right Through the Wall: Pretty much taken for granted as part of sex in the setting. It seems that every coupling includes at least one character who is prone to calling their orgasms — or DiDi, who seems to be in the habit of faking orgasm just as loudly.
  • Rock Trio: The band (eventually christened "Zii and the Troublemakers" when they finally suddenly realise that they need a name) has Zii on guitar, Sonya on bass, and Yuki on drums, with the first two presumably sharing vocal duties. The three of them don’t really work as any other sort of Power Trio, though — they’re all a little too similar to each other in crucial ways — which would explain their problems gelling as a trio off stage.
  • Romantic Comedy: The creators describe this (partly) as a rom-com, and there are certainly aspects of the genre here. The comedy part is definitely present, and most of the plots involve quasi-romantic relationships, but the comic has a slightly cynical view of love, which can be hard to distinguish from sexual obsession or deranged stalking here, and no relationship proves convincingly permanent until the last volume, when various characters move into final positions.
  • Roommate Com: A three-roommate version with significant supporting cast. The mandatory gay lead character is replaced by a gay secondary character and a lot of possible or actual bisexuality among other characters; the mandatory band membership comes up late in the day, but becomes quite important then.
  • R-Rated Opening: The comic is pretty mild-mannered and good-humored, really, but it's definitely rated R — and the first ever strip features NSFW gay sex, so no one can say that they were suckered in under false pretenses.
  • Rule 63: Sometimes invoked in various characters' fantasies:
    • Yuki is especially prone, because she combines a basically bisexual nature with severe phallophobia. "Garii" is one figment of her imagination.
    • Yuki also dreams Zii into the role of Captain Harlock, and Gary into that of Ulala, inverting their genders.
    • There are also "official" manifestations of the trope as bonus stories associated with the series' fourth and seventh book collections.
  • Rule of Sexy: Much of the comic's world runs on this. DiDi's enormous breasts, completely natural and free of sagging, are a key example, though far from the only one.
  • Running Gag:
    • People walking in on Matt having sex on the couch is the comic's primary example. It quickly got to the stage of being lampshaded; Matt and his partners will comment on his failure to use door locks.
    • DiDi's inability to keep track of her boyfriends would also count, though it faded slightly after a while.
    • People hallucinating Gary in place of other people's faces has threatened to fall into the category.
    • Dream sequences often feature at least one character getting gender-flipped, usually Gary.
    • Sonya blurting out "But I'm not a lesbian" has achieved memetic status among the fanbase.
    • People dreaming about having a sexual partner who is a mixture of two actual people, or who is one person who morphs into another.


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