- For starters, Tricky on the whole. He's a goddamn reality-warping demonic zombie clown who gives Ax-Crazy a whole new definition. He has a obsession with torturing Hank in any way he can, which can easily bring the Batman-Joker dynamic to mind, and he can even transform into a massive Nigh-Invulnerable flaming demon as a last-ditch effort.REALITY COMPROMISED - THE CLOWN HAS BEEN ENGAGED
- The Body Horror that comes with the MAG Agents, especially the first one, which has two massive nails smashed into its skull! The next iterations, while not as gruesome, are still quite imposing in their own right.
- Hank's gradual physical degeneration from death to death. He starts off looking like your average joe, and then gets shot in the head and then stabbed in the stomach, which just gives him some bandages. And then gets shot again and then blown to bits, which results in him being covered in bandages under his outfit. Antipathy has him reach an all-time low where his jaw gets replaced, looking and acting more ferocious as a result. And he still manages to survive as a half-headed zombie afterwards. By the time of Consternation, it's apparent that the degeneration is starting to take a toll on him, as the Badass Decay kicks in until Jebus finally just Mercy Kills him. As the bloodshed increases, the series becomes Darker and Edgier.
- The spinoff movie Tricky Madness 2 is nothing but this. Really takes the "madness" element to heart, it does.
- Krinkels claims he'll never pull anything like that again. He apologizes for the Gorn at the end of the video. It's as if he got half-way through making the video and stopped because he realized he crossed back over the line to "uncool, not cool."
- Hank himself, especially in Antipathy. He starts out as little more than a sack of skin and exposed teeth held together by bloody gauze◊. And he gets worse after the train crash, with smashed glasses, more missing teeth, and part of his brain cavity exposed. But the real kicker? None of this impedes his fighting ability in the slightest.
- As a matter of fact, Hank's injuries seem to only make him even more unhinged. By late in Antipathy, his once expertly efficient take on melee combat has started involving indiscriminately beating his victims senseless before killing them. Once Tricky has resurrected him in Consternation, he begins tearing chunks of flesh off of people with nothing but his hands. This looks exactly as horrible as it sounds.
- While the L33T Crew is generally just a bunch of faceless mooks whose only purpose is to be slaughtered by Hank, there are certain hints in the background of some episodes that demonstrate the inner workings of the agency. In Consternation, one room contains the corpse of an agent, pinned to the wall by spikes, with graffiti near it saying "DISSENTER BE DAMNED". Seems defection is not treated kindly in the Crew...
- A bit of Fridge Horror regarding Mag Hank. The signature defining characteristic of Madness characters is the crossing lines on their faces. Even at their most elaborately designed, Tricky and Jesus still have those lines beneath all their facial features — they're still essentially human. Once Hank has undergone this final resurrection, those lines have vanished from his face. This puts him on a very short list of such characters, the only other major one being the Auditor himself. No matter what he does now, Mag Hank is no longer a human.
- The Auditor is pretty unsettling as a whole, given who and what he is. His unusual design and eerily fluid way of moving sets him apart from the rest of the cast, suggesting he really isn't of their world. His unexplained supernatural powers also aren't to be taken lightly given how much damage he can potentially do with them, such as setting up the death of Deimos using Mind Control. He starts off pretty much Nigh-Invulnerable and continues to show new powers that make him almost impossible to defeat properly in battle. And once he gets backed into a corner he turns to cannibalising living and dead to power himself up and grow to a gargantuan size. It has to be remembered that this thing, whatever he is, has been running the show from the start and already had Nevada in an iron-grip dystopian military regime before the protagonists showed up: if it weren't for the chaos the protagonists, Tricky, and Jesus caused, it's likely there was nobody who could've stopped him - because he'd already won. And by the time of Expurgation, it's shown that he did win regardless.
- The moments where the entire world seems to start falling apart are also creepy. It's like you can see into the Matrix. Reality just falls apart and physics breaks down.
- How Jesus disposes of the Giant Mook in Incident:110a is equal parts awesome, horrific, and squicky. He cuts through the top half of its head with the Binary Sword, tears off its scalp, and then rips out its brain as it flails around blindly.
- Incident:111a is downright horrifying with the Surprise Creepy ending (well, Surprise Creepier). The Savior is killed without any struggle by an unknown force and he's terrified of it.
- ROMP.FLA starts off as amusing, then gets more horrifying as the extent of the mustached star's power is revealed. Once they're zombified, it's just nightmare faces galore as Sanford and Deimos are killed. And the ending has the grinning, shaking star launching itself at the screen.
- Krinkels' most recent shorts starring Deimos are extremely dark and almost bleak compared to most of his other works to date. The shorts star Deimos traversing an eerie Eldritch Location implied to be a kind of hellish "afterlife" following his death in the main series. The place doesn't abide to the laws of physics and Deimos is in a constant state of disorientation and in danger of dying over and over again to flying blades on chains which seem to have a mind of their own in how they seek him out. He gets caught by said chains a lot, almost at the end of every short and even a few times within the shorts in quick succession. Worse off, his on-screen deaths and subsequent sudden revivals show him getting progressively more mutilated without let-up. And that doesn't begin to cover the horrific sights he comes across while wandering...
- The second instalment SACRIFICE.fla, starts off with a somewhat funny moment and then quickly turns the tone on its head to show just how screwed up the place Deimos is in now can be. The Gainax Ending has Deimos emerge outside of a desolate version of the Bakery from Madness Combat 3: Avenger, where a corpse which resembles Hank falls down. Deimos touches it, then appears to be overcome with flashing, disorientating visions before being utterly destroyed by multiple flying chain-blades without warning.
- In the third short, ANAMNESIS.fla, there's a particularly unsettling moment where Deimos spots Sanford through a gap in another room, only to watch him get brutally killed. Then he manages to get into the room, which seems to be in a kind of "Groundhog Day" Loop, and saves Sanford from his would-be killer. Deimos seems to have saved his best friend... only for Sanford to turn around and reveal a black void where his face should be, and then everything goes to hell again.
- In particular, Deimos' body language in this episode is pretty telling to how terrified he feels in all of this. When "Sanford" turns around and starts advancing on Deimos, the latter falls over and waves his hand as if pleading for "Sanford" not to hurt him. From his point of view, Deimos is seeing his faceless best friend stalking towards him, supposedly to kill him. He then watches reality utterly freak out, "Sanford" included, which ends with "Sanford" unceremoniously splattered into the floor (with Deimos following shortly after).
- The fourth short, POWERLESS.fla is almost nothing but a conga line of disturbing imagery and events. Deimos gets attacked by a strange claw/tentacle, then encounters ATP Agents who flicker in and out of looking like they are Auditor-possessed - i.e. like the same Agent that killed him. When Deimos shoots one down, it suddenly turns into a version of himself wearing an ATP Mask (like that time he pranked Sanford). The episode ends with Deimos suddenly embedded into a wall by the claw-tentacle, and it doesn't look like he's getting out of there alone anytime soon.
- The claw which seems to have it out for Deimos looks an awful lot like Hank's mutant claw arm, which brings up an unsettling thought: Deimos was shot down before he saw Hank come out of the MAG chamber, so how did he know what Hank's new arm looked like... unless he wasn't completely dead then, including when Hank impaled his body on that very same claw.
- While Deimos coming back strong in DedmosRebuilt.fla is undeniably awesome, the sheer damage his new fists can cause is disturbing due to Art Evolution really emphasizing the injuries. With every punch, Deimos caves in his opponents' skulls and torsos. The worst part is that these blows rip right through their skin, giving us a lovely look at their utterly mangled skeletons underneath, particular attention being given to their skulls.
- You know that hellish "afterlife" mentioned above? That insane hellscape full of wacko physics, holes full of chain-blade death and bizarre architecture? Ever wondered what would happen if Tricky got to run the place? Well, wonder no more as Episode 11: Expurgation gives us the answer. Absolute high-octane nightmare fuel. First, there are undead imp-like creatures with glowing red eyes and Tricky-esque haircuts always trying to kill you. Then you might just spontaneously generate weapons out of your body because why not. Physics makes even less sense than previously, so a floor you get shoved into might connect to a wall and get to see your own feet. The holes and chain blades mentioned above still are around too. Sometimes the rooms become sentient and demand that you Get Out!.
- Tricky himself is still around too, now crazier and stronger than he should ever be. His new form is particularly disturbing, resembling a skeletal version of his old Antipathy and Consternation demon form. The most unsettling part is his change in mannerisms. The only real line of dialogue he speaks is the Say My Name quote shown below, and his movements seem even more erratic and insane than in previous episodes. These two aspects imply that whatever awareness or rationality there was in Tricky's insanity is now completely erased. He's nothing but a wild animal now, intent on murdering Hank in the worst way possible rather than just killing, reviving and generally screwing around with him.
The Auditor: CANNOT KILL CLOWN
- Before this form is revealed, an imp wearing the halo that is strongly implied to be the remaining vestige of the Auditor's grip on the fusion appears, barely able to pull himself out of a portal to tell Hank and Sanford one classic adage before Tricky consumes him.
- Worst of all however, is the fact that this place is implied to belong to and be run by the Auditor... just what is this guy?
- According to Word of God via his Curious Cat page, the Auditor is a living flaming avatar and living gateway to his own personal hell dimension. His smaller version of hell has a more curated audience and his role is more custodial, but Hank and the other protagonists' actions have caused him to become more proactive as of late. All of which explains nothing about who he is, where he comes from, or how he came to be.
- The ending of Expurgation, Hank finally manages to defeat and kill Tricky, maybe at the cost of his and Sanford's lives in the process. A bit bittersweet, yes, but it's a fitting way to put the Madness down for good, right? No. The Auditor, who had merely spectated the conflict, suddenly comes back to life and gets his halo back. After all this conflict, neither Hank, Jebus, Tricky, Sanford or Deimos could do anything to stop the Auditor.
- An Experiment answers a question many Madness fans have had since the series started: are the characters' hands really floating? Could you, say, seal them inside a box? And then pull that box away from the person's body? Turns out, the answer is yes... but the person will rapidly be driven insane by it, smash their face against the wall until the skin is completely gone, then proceed to glitch out their surroundings, rips an ATP engineer in two, and destroy the building they're in and everything in it, all the while repeatedly dashing themselves against the wall until they're nothing but a fine mist. Bet you wish you hadn't asked now.
- According to Word of God, to the Nevadeans, there's nothing beyond Nevada. There is very little fear, but plenty of pain and damn near everyone is a sinner even guys like Deimos. Imagine living in a world where all that awaits you is death and even when it comes, all you have to look forward to is literal hell. Even death isn't an escape.
- 9.5 Part One takes place in Hell as well, this time showing what Hank goes through anytime he dies. Even in a non-clown-controlled state, the place is nothing but chaos, chains and fear as far as the eye can see, and Hank's entrance to the realm of the dead is represented by a panicking person with a black liquid on its face running out to his companions, erupting into more scars, before being pulled back and exploding into Hank J. Wimbleton himself, who immediately proceeds to redirect an Engineer's swipe into one of the other grunts' fingers.
- Tricky is also here, and while not even close to his former menacing status, he more than makes up for it with sheer MindScrew. He is introduced with his hairs coming out of the ground and they look organic for some reasons, the hairs appears near a dead guy, which begins seizing up as if reanimating before Hank shoots him, and the corpse embeds itself further in the rock as Tricky appears from the ceiling.
- Worse yet, Tricky seems just as confused by the place he is in as the viewer, his second appearance after getting his face blown off being of him muttering to himself while glitching out, barely even responding when Hank fires a burst through him with an assault rifle before seizing up and being teleported out.
Nightmare Fuel / Madness Combat
UNMARKED SPOILERS AHEAD