Follow TV Tropes


Series / Chespirito

Go To
Chespirito's characters as played by him: Chaparrón Bonaparte, El Chapulín Colorado, El Chavo del Ocho, Doctor Chapatín and Chómpiras

Chespirito is a sketch-comedy series named after Roberto Gómez Bolaños, known as "Chespirito" (a play on "Shakespearecito", or "little Shakespeare") the Mexican comedian who wrote and starred in almost every sketch on the show. It's most famous for the skits El Chavo del ocho, in which Chespirito and others play small children who get into various mischief, and El Chapulín Colorado, a parody of comic-book super-heroes, who exhibits the opposite of all typical superhero traits, save for having good intentions. Both of these spun off into independent sitcoms for several years. Other popular sketches on the show were Dr. Chapatín (a rude, money-grubbing doctor who went a little berserk any time someone mentioned his age), Los Chifladitos (the surreal adventures of two suburban lunatics), and Los Caquitos (sketches about two small-time thieves, who eventually reform and try a series of odd jobs).

Chespirito ran for twenty-plus years, in one form or another, with most of the cast remaining for the entire time. Unfortunately, two cast members — Ramón Valdés and Carlos Villagrán — dropped out after having disagreements with the star. Many fans regard this as a Jump the Shark moment, since they played some of the best-loved characters on the show. Still, the show managed to go on for more than a decade without them, gradually relying more on sketches that didn't feature them.

Although the sitcoms are probably more fondly remembered than the sketch-comedy hour, the show is a major piece of Latin American pop-culture, and is still widely syndicated today.

Gómez Bolaños passed away on November 28, 2014, at age 85, leaving behind a huge legacy that will be remembered for generations to come.

This show as a whole provides examples of:

  • Eye Catch: Still caricatures (1981-1982) or short 2D animated bumpers (1982-1993) featuring the characters from the upcoming skit. Removed in 1993.
  • Laugh Track: Used consistently on all Chespirito TV productions until the 1981 season of this show. The first episodes without it started with a disclaimer explaining it was removed «as a matter of respect to the audience».
  • Letter Motif: All the regular characters played by Chespirito have a "CH" in their names or nicknames (Doctor Chapatín, El Chapulín Colorado, Chaparrón Bonaparte, El Chavo, El Chómpiras...), just like Chespirito himself. Initially this was nothing but a coincidence, but once it was pointed out to him, Chespirito deliberately included a "CH" in every character he'd play (such as El Chanfle and Vicente Chambón).
  • Spinoff: El Chavo del ocho and El Chapulín Colorado. The show itself spun-off from the Variety Show Sábados de la fortuna.

The skit "Dr. Chapatín" provides examples of:

  • Achievements in Ignorance:
    • In the first half of a El Chapulín Colorado episode, he's convinced to play poker with El Cuajináis and El Tripaseca, the two most dangerous gangsters in the city (though he doesn't know at first). Dr. Chapatín has no idea how to play poker, yet he manages to bluff a poker and get another one in just two plays. He's almost shot for that, though.
    • In another El Chapulín Colorado episode, he's told by a detective that a madman, El Pocastrancas, was in the hospital, and that he had to be completely mute to not anger him. However, Dr. Chapatín gets El Pocastrancas and a patient the other way around, and actually dodges every attack from El Pocastancas while massaging him, completely unaware of who he was until after he left.
  • Berserk Button: Any time somebody makes fun of Dr. Chapatín's apparent age. (Him asking angrily "Insinuas que soy viejo?" ("Are you insinuating I'm old?") and getting an affirmative answer (and a bit more biting than the one that made him ask) was a Running Gag).
  • Catchphrase: "¡Me da cosa!", whenever he thinks or sees something squicky.
  • Continuity Snarl: While all Chespirito shorts have No Continuity, Dr. Chapatín's awareness of El Chapulín Colorado varies between each episode. In one, he's happy to see he's arrived to protect him. In another, upon accidentally summoning him, he thinks he's a madman believing to be El Chapulín Colorado and that the character only existed in the TV - though he happened to be told shortly before that that there was a madman believing he was El Chapulín Colorado.
  • Courtroom Episode: Dr. Chapatín is being sued by a woman, whose dog he ran over. Like El Chavo would do in the better known remake of this episode, he keeps sabotaging his defense, right as his lawyer is about to give up the case as lost, he lets Dr. Chapatín give his testimony. While on the stand, he mentions that he ran over the dog because he swerved in order to not run over a jaywalking drunk, when his lawyer asks why he didn't mention the drunk jaywalker, he looks at the judge and says that the court would have asked him if he could recognize the drunk, and he would have to tell everyone who the drunk was. The judge declares Dr. Chapatín not guilty, and closes the case.
  • Dr. Jerk: Subverted. Dr. Chapatín is a doctor and a Grumpy Old Man, but in some episodes it's stated that he's a well-known doctor because he's the cheapest, not because he's good. He's also more concerned in getting money than anything else.
  • Failure Gambit: Dr. Chapatín once did a bet with his assistant that he could kiss her without touching her lips. He failed... as the bet was merely a way to lure her into kissing him.
  • Grumpy Old Man: Dr. Chapatín. He is very old and tends to have a very short temper. Treating everyone with mild annoyance, at best.
  • Historical Longevity Joke: Once per Episode. Someone will always make a comment about his age, and the doctor would angrily ask if they are implying that he is old. The man would deny it, just to make a worse comment about his age.
    While playing poker: Something tells me that the first three of kings you set were Melchior, Caspar, and Balthasar.
  • Hospital Hottie: In some episodes, Dr. Chapatín mentions looking for attractive nurses - and that includes his own assistant.
  • Mad Libs Catch Phrase: "¿Insinúa que soy viejo?", whenever someone mocks Dr. Chapatín's age. This triggers a small conversation:
    Dr. Chapatín: Are you implying I'm an old man?
    Someone else: No, Doctor. I don't know why but I have the feeling [insert ridiculous commentary hinting that Dr. Chapatín is old, for example: "the first fruit you bought was Adam and Eve's apple"].
    Then Dr. Chapatín would hit that person with his paper bag.
  • Only in It for the Money: Dr. Chapatín himself claims his specialty is "early payments". One skit involves a man trying to bribe Dr. Chapatín to fake an illness so that he would not have to do housework, to where Dr. Chapatín demands increasingly higher bribes. Turns out the man's wife already bribed Dr. Chapatín with a higher amount of money to give her husband some medicine with a very bad taste, so that he'd no longer fake an illness.
  • Serious Business: Football is this overall for Dr. Chapatín.
    • In a skit, Dr. Chapatín discusses about a penalty that was not given out in a football match. Whoever disagrees with his opinion that the penalty should have been given was hit by him. In the end, a soon-to-be-married couple starts a fight over the very same disagreement.
    • In another, he's desperate to attend a football match, but patients and phone calls constantly interrupt him. He eventually starts taking shortcuts to help patients and throwing the phone away... only to be told the football match was not that day, but the following one.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Dr. Chapatin was basically Chespirito's version of Tyrone F. Horneigh, the old man from Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In. In fact, some of Dr. Chapatin's skits featured a character similar to Gladys Ormphby, another character from Tyrone's skits.
    • To one of Chespirito's other shows. In one skit where Dr. Chapatin accidentally foils some jewel thieves, a homeless widow laments to a cop that she was evicted after she accrued 14 months of back rent. In El Chavo del ocho, 14 months of back rent was the debt Don Ramón had with Señor Barriga.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Chespirito's major recurring characters fall all along the spectrum.
    • At the most noble, we have Chapulín Colorado, who is cowardly but devotes himself completely to helping others.
    • Next we have El Chavo, who is generally very kind-hearted and honest, even if he might tell tiny lies or steal small bits of bread just to get a chance to eat.
    • Smack in the middle of the scale of Chaparrón Bonaparte who lacks enough awareness to truly be moral or amoral.
    • Moving towards cynicism, there is Chómpiras, who is a thief but still very soft-hearted, steals mainly to survive and would never do anything to harm anyone.
    • Probably the most cynical is Dr. Chapatín, who is a healer but is truly only driven by money and rarely thinks of the needs of anyone except himself.
    • The less famous Vicente Chambón is probably as close to full idealism as Chapulín. Although his principal weakness is bumbling, a recurring idea in his skits is that he fails as a news reported because he is too kind-hearted to expose anyone who would prefer to keep their privacy. Some fans prefer to believe that Chambón is the Clark Kent to Chapulin's Superman.
  • Squick: In-universe, de doctor will alwasy says "Me da cosa" whenever something sounds gross or creepy (A rough translation would be "it gives me the creeps").
  • The Unreveal: The doctor always carried a paper bag which would never play any part whatsoever in the plot, except to punch whoever dared to say that he was old (this happened at least Once per Episode). But once, his nurse and one patient asked him directly about the paper bag and he finally answered: "Tengo queles." "¿Queles?" "¡¿Qué les importa?!" (that could be translated as "I have nunnayer." "Nunnayer?" "''None o'your'' damn business!").
  • Younger Than He Looks: In one skit, Dr. Chapatín claims to be 36. In another, he says his grandmother died recently. Dr. Chapatín looks no different from an old man.

The skit "Los Chifladitos" ("The Little Crazies") provides examples of:

  • Accidental Hero: In an episode, Chaparrón and Lucas manage to catch a kidnapper of children, just because they believed that he was going to steal a doll, which Chaparrón believed was his daughter.
  • Achievements in Ignorance:
    • In some Sketches, they manage to do things that should be impossible, but they are too crazy to realize that they are impossible. Like, for example, advancing the hour, changing the hands of a clock.
    • Chaparrón mentions that if he found thieves himself, he would be in charge of catching them. Lucas then states that Chaparrón does not have the necessary strength or intelligence to do what he just said, and advised him to just call the police if something like that happened. Chaparrón then mentions that he managed to catch two thieves, because he was not aware of how dangerous this was.
  • Anti-Hero: Due to their poor grasp on reality, Chaparrón and Lucas tend to cause a lot of problems whenever they are doing something they deem as good - to the point they sometimes reach borderline Villain Protagonist levels
  • Big Guy, Little Guy: Lucas (Big) and Chaparrón (Little). the height difference between both is greater than one foot.
  • Butt-Monkey: Pretty much anybody unfortunate enough to walk into Lucas and Chaparrón's house is destined to regret it, but the neighbor's father, played by Horacio Gomez, gets abuse the most often and to the greatest degree.
  • Character Tics:
    • Chaparrón suffers of something called "chiripiorca", in which he'll involuntarily stop what he's doing and do a repetitive dance in place until Lucas whacks him on the back to bring him out of it. Accompanied by bizarre sound effects.
    • Lucas approaches Chaparrón, pointing up and sideways with both hands before saying his Catchphase.
    • Lucas and Chaparrón both like to pronounce certain words starting with "f" by elongating the "f" and pausing before saying the rest of the word. Particularly with the word "ffffff...ormidable".
  • Catchphrase: This could very likely be the most catch-phrase filled of all the recurring skits. Los Chifladitos skits rarely run more than 10 minutes, but they almost always include identical conversations between Lucas and Chaparrón about other people saying they're crazy, with slightly different jokes subbed in each time. It's fair to say that Los Chifladitos has catch-dialogue just as much as catch-phrases. Appearing in almost every episode are...
    • "Óyeme. Chaparrón. ¿Sabías que la gente sigue diciendo que tú y yo estamos locos?" (Hey Chaparrón, did you know people are still saying you and me are crazy?).
    • "¿Que tú y yo estamos locos, Lucas?" (That you and I are crazy??)
    • "Oye Lucas. Dígame Licenciado." Licenciado. "Gracias, muchas gracias." This snippet of wordplay is said every episode and is difficult to explain to an English-speaking audience. "Dígame" can either mean "speak to me", "tell me", or "say to me". Most people would understand "Dígame, Licenciado" to mean, "I'm listening, Licenciado, go ahead and speak." but Chaparrón interprets it as "Say the word 'Licenciado' to me." And in fact, that's exactly what Lucas wants, leading to his grateful response.
    • "No hay de queso, nomás de papa." (There's no cheese, only potato.) In early skits, when Lucas or Chaparrón wanted to say "You're welcome", they said it normally: "No hay de qué." Before long, it turned into the punny "No hay de, no más de papa." For most of the skit's history, the response to "gracias" was always "No hay de queso, nomás de papa.", and it's the one phrase from the skit that people who grew up watching it might use in real life.
    • No hay de qué. (The phrase evolved into "No hay de queso, no más de papa.")"
    • "¿Ya se vá?" (Are you leaving already?). Used in various situations: When they are bored with their visitor, when they have just done something so off-the-wall they have driven their guests to run away, or when their visitor has just arrived.
    • ¡Estás en lo cierto!" (You're right!)
    • "¡...y parecían personas normales!" "Sí...cómo tú...¡o cómo yo!" ("...and they seemed like normal people!" "Yes...just like you...or me!") Said after their own antics have driven someone through the roof.
  • Crossover:
    • With los Caquitos in one skit. Chaparrón Bonaparte and Lucastañeda are discussing a possible scenario, where a couple of thieves break into their home, and Chapparon then states that he would sneak behind them with a blunt instrument, strike their heads, tie them up, and announce to Lucas that he knocked them unconscious and tied them down. Lucas then states that Chaparrón does not have the necessary strength or intelligence to do what he just said, and advised him to just call the police if something like that happened. Chaparrón heeds Lucas' advice and apologizes for beating up, and tying down El Chómpiras and Botija.
    • With Dr. Chapatín in a full-length episode. Early in the series there was a run of Chifladitos sketches taking place on or around an elevator. Late in the series, these sketches were worked into an hour-long episode with Dr. Chapatín staying at a hotel. It was one of only a couple of times Los Chifladitos was seen in a full-episode-long story.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander:
    • Both Chaparrón and Lucas, being too far removed from reality to say things that make sense.
    • The neighbour is a much more down-to-earth example, where she simply does not seem to realize she's often interacting with two lunatics.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: One time they tied up a man, made him stand trial, and hit him in the stomach several times because he "killed" a coconut.
  • The Ditz: The neighbor is kind towards Chaparrón and Lucas, but her behaviour seems to imply she doesn't know they are crazy.
  • Dub Name Change: In the Portuguese dub:
    • Chaparrón's name is changed to "Pancada", which means "crazy" but is more commonly used to refer to a punch. Lucas Tañeda is changed to "Lucas Pirado (which also means crazy).
    • The "digame licenciado" joke is changed to "fala, belo" (say, handsome), to which Chaparrón replies "belo" (handsome).
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
    • Chaparrón had No Indoor Voice, and initially could talk while he was having a chiripiorca.
    • The neighbor character does not stay consistent for the first couple of years. Sometimes she has a normal appearance, sometimes she has her more canonical appearance (tan sweater, cat-eye glasses, red hair) but a normal voice (instead of the nasal one), and sometimes she is played by one of the other actresses on the show.
  • Feigning Intelligence: At the very least, Chaparrón and especially Lucas manage to fool people by making them think they are sane.
  • From Bad to Worse: One skit has this dialogue:
    Nurse: (Talking on the phone) Hello, mental hospital, Director's office. Oh, hello Director, good morning. Yes, I'm almost done with Chaparrón's examination. Yes, I finished examining Lucas Tañeda. Improved? No doctor, I think it's the complete opposite.
  • Got Volunteered: In one skit, Chaparrón and Lucas Tañeda, are in the middle of a war (actually they wondered onto a construction cite, but because of their mental faculties believed they were at war), and when Lucas asks for a volunteer to go and give "the enemy" an ultimatum to take two steps forward, he takes two steps back, and congratulates Chaparrón on his bravery.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: A census worker once asks them if they're married. They look at each other for a moment and say "No, just good friends."
  • Madlibs Catchphrase:
    • "No hagas caso. (Insert pun.)" Example: "No hagas caso. En la gente reina la envidia, y en Inglaterra reina Isabel." (Ignore them. Envy reigns over people, and Elizabeth reigns over England.)
    • "A propósito de X, sabías que la gente sigue diciendo Y" (Speaking of...did you know people are still saying...). Generally, 'X' and 'Y' are topics that had nothing to do what they were talking about, and have nothing to do with each other.
  • Meaningful Name: Chaparrón Bonaparte is named after "chaparro", "shorty" due to his height, and Napoléon Bonaparte, whose character is often related to lunatics. Lucas Tañeda is named after La Castañeda, an old Mexican mental hospital.
  • No Social Skills: Neither of the pair can interact with any other people naturally. Always making them uncomfortable at best, or outright exasperating them at worst. Not that they would notice.
  • May I Borrow a Cup of Sugar?: The female neighbor of Los Chifladitos always appear asking this.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: Chaparrón managed to catch two thieves, using only a broom as a fake rifle.
  • Repeat After Me: Running Gag, which goes something like this:
    Chaparrón: Oye Lucas
    Lucas: Dígame, Licenciado (Tell me, Licenciado)note 
    Chaparrón: Licenciadonote 
    Lucas: ¡Gracias, muchas gracias! (Thank you, thank you very much!)
  • Straight Man and Wise Guy: Subverted in that, while Chaparrón and Lucas do have a dynamic resembling this trope (with Chaparrón as the carefree Straight Man and Lucas as the Wise Guy and voice of reason), both are ultimately too crazy to take the latter role.
  • With Friends Like These...: The skits will include at least one instance where Chaparrón will mention a rather innocuous statement, only for Lucas to turn it into a Flowery Insult.

The skit "Los Caquitos" ("The Little Thieves") provides examples of:

  • Amoral Attorney: In the second part of when Chimoltrufia is willed Hotel Don Lucho by the late owner in an impromptu testament written in a notebook page, the owner's nephew says he'll contest the inheritance in court. When the notebook in question goes missing, it turns up later in the hands of the nephew's lawyer who asks Chimoltrufia to divorce Botija, marry him, sell the hotel, split the money, divorce him, and remarry Botija. When Chimoltrufia refuses to be part of his scam, the lawyer says the notebook will go missing once again, and she'll get nothing, which is when she points out that their conversation was overheard by Licenciado Luna and Sargento Refugio, whom promptly place the lawyer under arrest.
  • Artifact Title: They stopped being "Caquitos" (Little thieves) by the second half of their run, yet the skit was still being refereed by that name.
  • Ascended Extra: In the early years, Los Caquitos appeared as an "entremés"translation , a short sketch shown at the beginning of a Chavo or Chapulín episode. By the mid-80s, Chespirito began to pivot away from Chavo and Chapulín towards less physically-demanding sketches. Los Caquitos had the most-developed cast of characters, and could most easily carry hour-long storylines. Because of that, Los Caquitos dominated the later years of the series, particularly after Chavo and Chapulín were retired.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Played for Laughs in "La vieja". El Chómpiras and El Peterete were being harassed by the old lady whose house they broke in. When she's about to kiss them, the policeman arrests them on the spot.
    Chómpiras: I've always had faith in the police.
  • Breakout Character: The skit itself pretty much took over the show in later years. Also, La Chimoltrufia (played by Florinda Meza) was an incidental character that began gaining a lot of prominence and finally became a key part of it. In fact, when Meza left the show for a season to do a telenovela, the show stopped running Caquitos skits until she returned. Meanwhile, when actor Edgar Vivar left the series for several months for health reasons, the skits just continued without Botija, originally the star character.
  • Catchphrase:
    • Chimoltrufia has what is probably the longest catchphrase in all of TV, although one could say it is actually a series of catch phrases that are almost always said consecutively. But in the course of conversation, whenever she feels she has made a point, she usually says "¿Pa'que le digo que no, si sí? Digo, no nos hagamos tarugos, pos ya sabes que yo como digo una cosa digo otra, pues si es que es como todo, hay cosas que ni qué, ¿tengo o no tengo razón?"translation  It's quite nonsensical even in Spanish, and anyone talking with her will usually be confused into agreeing with her whenever she drops it.
    • She frequently uses "Pa'que le digo que no, si sí?" independently of the rest of the phrases. It's her standard way of saying "yes" and she uses it so much the other characters often catch themselves saying it.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: El Chómpiras and El Peterete occasionally came across crazy old ladies that either harass them or think they are playing a game.
  • Criminal Doppelgänger: Chómpiras, although a small-time criminal himself, ended up under threat by a much more powerful criminal doppelganger, who wanted to kill Chómpiras and use the body to fake his own death.
  • Cut His Heart Out with a Spoon: Whenever Chómpiras did or said something stupid, Peterete (and later Botija) would just slap him, but then threaten that next time he will do something really contrived and bizarre as punishment.
    Peterete: And next time, I will twist your navel with this fork.
  • Dance Party Ending: In one episode, Licenciado Luna, asked Chimoltrufia to house sit while he went to his granddaughter's baptism. She brings Botija to keep her company, and are also joined by Chómpiras, Chimoltrufia's mom, Sargento Refugio, and Marujita. When the group holds an impromptu dance party, the Licenciado, his daughter, and son-in-law arrive, and the former group gets dragged to court. However, once they resolve the situation, the episode ends with Botija dancing with Chimoltrufia, Chómpiras with Chimoltrufia's mom, Refugio with Marujita, the Licenciado's daughter with her husband, and Licenciado himself with his granddaughter.
  • Darker and Edgier: By the late years, contrasting by the usual Chespirito skits. Once more hour-long episodes started appearing and the characters became more developed, more serious storylines occasionally appeared, although the episodes were mostly slapstick and wordplay all the way up to the last episode.
  • Drop-In Character: Nachita (Angelines Fernández) is the neighbor of Chimoltrufia and Botija, and generally stops by to drop exposition or have exposition dropped on her. Also, she alternatively chases after Chómpiras or tries to have him arrested.
  • Disney Villain Death:
    • In the sketch "El cadaver" (The Corpse)(1990), after being accidentally scared by Doña Nieves, who held a gun while believing it to be her pipe, Chómpiras, Botija, and Shory fall off a window, to which Doña Nieves declares that she never thought somebody could die from a scare, implying that they fell from a high floor of a building to their deaths. However, since the series has a rather loose continuity, the two appear alive in the following episodes, while Shory also made sporadic appearances in subsequent episodes.
    • Subverted twice:
      • First, in "El vampiro chupasangre", upon watching a thief known as Cuajinais in her window, Chimoltrufia screamed in fear, as she believed he was a vampire (due to her naively believing everything in TV is real). The scream caused Cuajinais to slip and fall into the street. While he survived the fall, he was heavily injured and in need of a blood transfusion.
      • Later, in "Testimonio de un crimen (parte 3)" (1991), a criminal tries to murder Chimoltrufia, as she was the only one who could recognize him as the oe who attempted to kill Licenciado Morales, by breaking into her house. However, his continuous attemmpts to kill her eventually failed and caused him to try to leave througth the window, only for him to jump off the window when Chimoltrufia (who was blindfolded after being thrown dirt into her eyes by the criminal after shooting Licenciado in an attempt to prevent her from recognizing him) tried to close the window as she left for the hospital. Unlike the previous subversion, the criminal landed safely... by landing into another person, who ended up being the one injured.
  • The Dog Bites Back: In one hour long episode, Botija orders el Chómpiras to break into a pawnshop, steal the money, and bring it back to his house. When Chómpiras returns, Botija says the money will be split in accordance to their rank, with Chómpiras being one, Chimoltrufia two, and botija three. Botija then gives Chómpiras one bill starp, two for Chimoltrufia, and three for him, when Chómpiras protests, Botija says he's the boss, and Chimoltrufia second in command. Later that night Chómpiras sneaks into Botija's room, and returns every cent to the pawn shop.
  • Double Standard: In one skit, Chimoltrufia gets arrested for beating up Sargento Refugio after he catcalled her. Later, after Chómpiras insults Botija, Botija slaps him and Licenciado Padilla warns him not to hit Chómpiras anymore, and Chimoltrufia says "a disrespectful comment is no reason to hit someone." After Licenciado Padilla calls her out on her comment she goes on a long winded rant on the differences between men and women, Padilla compliments her linguistic abilities, and after Chómpiras gets slapped by Botija for insulting him, Refugio admits that he only catcalled Chimoltrufia after another cop did, and when Botija asks why she didn't beat up that cop too, she says it's because the other cop was such a handsome man.
  • Eat the Evidence: Near the end of the two part episode where Chimoltrufia is willed Hotel Don Lucho by the late owner in an impromptu testament written in a notebook page, the owner's nephew's lawyer is arrested after he stole the notebook and tried to pressure Chimoltrufia into marrying him so that he could get a share of the money from the sale of the hotel. However a short time later, Sargento Refugio delivers some devastating news: as Refugio was taking him in to be processed, the lawyer ripped out the page that said Chimoltrufia was the hotel's new owner and ate it.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • In the syndicate of which our protagonists are a part, they cannot stand that a thief robs another thief, to the point that there is a recurring phrase "Thief who robs a thief is a traitor to the union."
    • Our protagonists don't rob churches or schools, the only time they tried to do it is when they got kicked out of the union, and they tried to steal one of these to impress them, and still they weren't able to continue with the robbery.
  • Expy: The main set and the main characters (and even the dynamics between them) are an awful lot like The Honeymooners, although there are important differences, like Botija and Chómpiras being thieves and Chimoltrufia being rather stupid.
  • Genre Savvy: The policeman El Chómpiras and El Peterete constantly come across with eventually stops regarding them as threats and tries to convice them to stop having a life of crime, especially to El Chómpiras.
  • Godzilla Threshold: The protagonists don't steal from churches or schools, but when they were kicked out of the Syndicate they tried to do it to try and impress them, subverted, that they weren't able to go through with the robbery anyway.
  • Greater-Scope Villain:
    • The Syndicate, It is the organization to which our protagonists belong, but we never see him, beyond a few members.
    • El Cuajináis, which is a dangerous criminal who is much more influential and dangerous than our protagonists.
  • The Ghost: La señora de la farmacia ("The Drugstore Lady"). Chómpiras constantly mentions her and even implies that they have an on-and-off relationship, but she never appears.
  • Harmless Villain: While the protagonists are crooks, they are too well-meaning (and stupid) to do any real harm. In early episodes, they are announced as "Los inofensivos Caquitos", which means "The Harmless Little Thieves".
  • Heel–Face Door-Slam: Even before watching El Chavo del ocho episode, our protagonists tried to withdraw from being thieves numerous times, but in the end something happened that put them back on that path.
  • Heel–Face Turn: In the famous episode where they watch a particularly sad episode of El Chavo del ocho, they regret being thieves and start doing odd jobs afterwards.
  • Hero Antagonist: The policemen El Chómpiras and El Peterete constantly come across. He's a good person, even trying to have them change their ways.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: Marujita. The show, while remaining family-friendly, drops occasional innuendo about how Maruja makes a living (although in the end it's ambiguous).
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Sargento Refugio and Marujita. Refugio is the tallest character of the series, while Marujita is the shortest.
  • Inadequate Inheritor: At the very end of the two-part episode where the hotel's recently deceased owner wills Chimoltrufia Hotel Don Lucho by writing it in an impromptu testament in notebook paper, Sargento Tefugio tells her that the Lawyer hired by the owner's nephew ate the notebook page in question as he was being arrested, thus leaving her with nothing. Don Lucho gives his condolences to Chimoltrufia and adds that not only will the nephew get the hotel, but he's heard nothing but bad references of the nephew as a businessman.
  • Insult Friendly Fire: In a sketch where Doña Nachita accuses Chompiras of stealing her earrings has Licensiado Luna Lamp Shade this dialogue:
    Chimoltrufia: That's because because I like helping humble people like el Chompiras, a poor devil, who is a waste of human humanity, a starving good for nothing-
    Chompiras: Hey, Chimoltrufia, I thinks that's enough.
    Chimoltrufia: Chompiras, can't you see I'm trying to prove the fact that you've been a moron since birth.
    Botija: Objection! There is no need to prove what is common knowledge.
    Chimoltrufia: Yeah, I guess that's true.
    Chompiras: What do you mean it's true?!
    Licensiado Luna: Chompiras is right, instead of defending him, you're attacking him.
  • Fat and Skinny: El Botija and Chómpiras respectively. Most jokes at Botija expense were about his weight.
  • Leitmotif: The main theme of The Pink Panther for Peterete.
  • Line-of-Sight Name: Chimoltrufia (played by Florinda Meza), who's named María Expropiación Petronila Lascuráin y Torquemada de Botija, was named "Expropiacion Petronila" because she was supposedly born on the day the petroleum expropriation ("expropiación petrolera") took place in Mexico.
  • Marriage of Convenience: Discussed in the two-part episode where the hotel's recently deceased owner wills Chimoltrufia the hotel by writing it in a notebook paper. After the owner's nephew says he'll challenge the will in court, the notebook in question goes missing. Soon after that, the nephew's lawyer discloses to Chimoltrufia that he has the notebook, and makes her an offer: marriage. The lawyer tells Chimoltrufia to divorce Botija, marry him, add his name to the hotel's deed, sell the hotel, split the money, divorce him, and remarry Botija. In the end Chimoltrufia refuses the lawyer's scam and has him arrested since Licenciado Luna and Sargento Refugio were listening in on their conversation.
  • Mistaken for Undead: In one hour long episode, Chómpiras is trying to catch up on some sleep, but when Licenciado Luna asks him to go to the morgue to identify a body, Chómpiras finds an empty examination table and takes a nap. When Botija, Chimoltrufia, and Sargento refugio go to the morgue, they find Chómpiras sleeping, and assume his body had recently been brought in. When Chómpiras wakes up, from listening on the conversation, the former three run away in terror. When Chómpiras goes to Botija and Chimoltrufia's apartment, they assume he's there to haunt them, but when Chómpiras clarifies that he's not dead, they threaten to beat him up for playing a prank on them, but eventually convinces them that they were the ones who made the assumption he was dead.
  • "Not Making This Up" Disclaimer: In an episode Botija bets with Chómpiras in a poker game based on the "good luck" that his horoscope predicted, yet it ends backfiring. The episode ends with a disclaimer saying that the horoscopes used through the episode were not made up by the writer, but taken verbatim from an actual Mexican newspaper.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: The two crooks treat their activities as thieves as an actual profession, even organizing their thefts as if they were business appointments. This was originally thought of as something that was funny and not realistic, but then Chespirito discovered that this actually happened in real life.
  • Retool: The original skits were about el Chómpiras and el Peterete/el Botija and their often failed attempts to steal. In the later part, Chómpiras and Botija decided to quit the thieves life for good, and averting Status Quo Is God, they found honest jobs, so most of the later skits involved them working at a hotel and how they deal with it.
  • Running Gag: During the first half of the skit, El Peterete would comb El Chómpiras's hair, slap him and make a ridiculous threat would he do anything stupid.
  • Split Personality: Inverted, as the episode "Las Gemelas" (1988) centers on a client at Hotel Lucho who secretly sneaks her twin sister into the hotel. Since the two continuosly leave and have different experiences with the staff, Botija is led to belive that the woman has a split personality, a concept he explains to la Chimoltrufia and el Chómpiras. However, Botija does not seem to understand the concept himself, as, when Chimoltrufia accused the client of stealing the hotel's money even througth she states that she was with Sargento Refugio at the time, Botija takes it as a confirmation that she has a split personality, arguing that "what one personality does, the other ignores it. And what the other does, the one ignores it", clearly not realizing that split personalities does not mean you can divide physically into two (something Lincenciado Morales points out in the 1993 two-part version).
  • Springtime for Hitler: In one episode, El Peterete suggests El Chómpiras to go on a vacation. El Chómpiras is overjoyed to hear that until El Peterete said the destination is the Mary Islands, which house a prison... until he's eventually convinced to go along with El Peterete's plan to be captured by a nearby policeman and sent there. First, El Peterete tells El Chómpiras to break a nearby window - it turns out to be the window to El Chómpiras's house (and he tried to warn El Peterete about it) so the policeman ignores them. Then, El Chómpiras tries to rob a person at gunpoint - that person turns out to be another criminal, and the policeman thanks them. They finally try to steal something from a nearby church, but then they decide not to.
  • Stupid Crooks: The original basis of the skit.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Botija (Édgar Vivar) replacing Peterete (Ramón Valdés) in the '80s version of the show, although their physical appearances were polar opposites. Later, they start working on a hotel owned by Don Lucho (Carlos Pouliot); that hotel shuts down, and they start working on a similar one owned by Don Cecilio (Moisés Suárez).
  • Unexpected Inheritance: In a two part episode, Chimoltrufia befriends an elderly guest staying at Hotel Don Lucho, which turns out to be the owner of the property, and Don Lucho, the acting manager, explains that the hotel has his name because the owner gave him free reign on the condition that he handed over the earnings from the guests staying over. When the old man dies, he writes in a piece of notebook paper that Chimultrufia gets the hotel, however as an investigation unfolds, the owner's nephew shows up, and says he will challenge the inheritance in court.
  • Villain Decay: Botija. In his appearances in the El Chapulín Colorado sketches, he was a true threat.
  • Villain Protagonist: The protagonists are two Stupid Crooks.
  • With Friends Like These...: Botija and Chómpiras are very close friends, despite the fact that Botija constantly mocks Chómpiras, and slaps him whenever Chómpiras screws up, or when he calls out Botija. In one skit, after they had stopped stealing, Chómpiras recounts how he stole four apples, with three of them being spoiled. Botija says that showed Chómpiras's ineptitude since Botija managed to get the good one. When Chómpiras mentions how he managed to steal four more apples, where three of them were good and one was spoiled, Botija tried to play him eating the three good ones and leaving the bad one to Chómpiras as bad luck.
  • You Look Familiar: During the first few years of Caquitos sketches, main cast members who played regular recurring characters sometimes played people on the street or other thieves. Up until about the time Botija and Chómpiras quit stealing, Rubén Aguirre alternated playing the policeman (who was unnamed) with Horacio Gómez, and Raúl Padilla played other parts just as often as he played el Licenciado Morales. This even included Florinda Meza for the first year or so, in some sketches that didn't feature Chimoltrufia. Gradually, the supporting characters developed enough importance that it stopped happening. After the supporting characters developed their importance, other actors outside of Chespirito's ensemble were needed for one-time characters; many of these actors and actresses appeared in multiple episodes in different roles.

Other skits provide examples of:

  • The Artifact: Animations of Vicente Chambón remained in the opening and closing credits of the show for many years after "La Chicharra" sketches stopped showing.
  • Damsel out of Distress: In one "La Chicharra" skit, Vicente Chambón and Cándida (Florinda Meza) show up to report on a gunman that has entrenched himself in an apartment. When Cándida gets too close, she's pulled inside by the gunman. When Vicente stumbles his way to rescue her, she answer the door, and when he asks if she's okay, she says she's fine, and when he asks about the gunman, she points to him, lying unconcious on the floor.
  • Do You Want to Haggle?: William Tell with the governor, haggling the conditions of his eponymous challenge.
    William Tell: A watermelon instead of an apple.
    Governor: No
    William Tell: Shooting a ball instead of an arrow.
    Governor: No
    William Tell:
    ' Your grandmother instead of the child.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: A recurring sketch early in the hour-long 80s series was "La Chicharra", in which Chespirito played small-time news reporter Vicente Chambón. This was briefly an independent half-hour series just before the hour-long show debuted. After appearing frequently in the first season and less often in the second, La Chicharra made one last appearance in the 3rd season, in which the Will They or Won't They? romance story-line between Chambón and photographer Cándida (Florinda Meza) finally gets to move a step forward.
  • "Everybody Dies" Ending: The Juan Tenorio sketch, like the play, ends with everybody dead and meeting at the graveyard.
  • Framing Device: Some of these shorts are completely independent, but most of them are actually stories told by Chapulín in his own episodes.
  • Gossip Evolution: In the Samson's story, people heard that he killed a lion in the Sinai desert and got 100 thousand dollars as reward. He clarifies (one mistake at a time) that actually he killed an Angora kitten on the Chapultepec zoo and got a 100 pesos fine.
    Samson: But everything else is true.
  • Gratuitous Italian: Christopher Columbus in the skit that retells his story. He speaks Spanish with some Italian words thrown in, and instead of the series-wide Unusual Euphemism "¡Chanfle!", he uses "Per San Gennaro!" ("For Saint Gennaro!")
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Due to how tall Ruben Aguirre is, he always fulfills this role when they put him with a love interest.
  • I Am Spartacus: In the sketch where the Colonel asks for a volunteer to test a prototype parachute. Chespirito says he knows who's the boyfriend of the Col.'s daughter after he's told he won't be selected if he tells him. Chespirito takes pity on him and says he's her boyfriend, but then the Sergeant confesses that he's her boyfriend, then the Captain says he is. When the Col. demands to know the truth, Chespirito says they all are.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: All the shorts of public domain characters were titled. "Story of character. Not as it was, but as it could have been."
  • Judgment of Solomon: Played for laughs while recounting Solomon's story. He spelled out his plan to the Queen of Sheba before setting it in motion, when he proposed the deal to the women, his own slave came out of nowhere begging to spare the child, so Solomon declared him the mother.
  • Long-Lost Relative: In a skit performed in the final years of the show, Chespirito played the owner of a funeral home named Carlos Vera, and when an employee allowed a homeless girl take refuge in a coffin because she was running away from the man, Ruben Aguirre, from whom she stole. When the man, Carlos' friend, Carlos, and the employee confront the girl, Carlos tells the girl she looks familiar and pays his friend for the bread, and when she leaves the funeral home, he admits it was because she may be his daughter. When they encounter her again, he shows her a picture of an ex-girlfriend, and she's delighted to see a picture of her grandmother.
  • Napoleon Delusion: In the Napoleon skit, it turns out that Napoleon is actually a mental institution patient, and everyone else involved in it were doctors playing along.
  • Public Domain Character: He made lots of skits about folk tales, fairy tales, or even historical events.
  • Rhymes on a Dime: Everyone on Don Juan Tenorio sketch. To keep the tone of the play. Lampshaded in the third act, when Tenorio consciously mentions that he has to rhyme his next line, and the gravedigger that makes his rhymes by destroying any word so it fits.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: The Cyrano de Bergerac skit. Cyrano spends most of the episode not being able to confess his love to Roxane as he fears being rejected due to his Gag Nose. In the end, Roxane rejects him because she already had a boyfriend... that also had an ugly nose.
  • Toilet Humor: Chespirito was never above the occasional fart, pee, or poop joke in all of his characters' series. However, he really took this trope as far as he could in the movie Música de viento (Wind Music), where Chespirito played a man who let out a blast of flatulence whenever he saw a gun, in real life or even on TV.
  • That's an Order!: In a skit where Chespirito plays a private, Ruben Aguirre plays a sergeant, Edgar Vivar a captain, and Horacio Gomez plays a colonel, Gomez's character orders Vivar's character to dispose of a large sandbag, who then orders Aguirre, and who then orders Chespirito to do so.
    Chespirito: Sergeant Aguirre! mission accomplished, the sandbag is disposed of.
    Aguirre:' Very well. Captain Vivar! Mission accomplished, the sandbag is disposed of
    Vivar: Colonel Gomez! mission accomplished, the bag is disposed of.
    Gomez: (staggers into the scene since someone threw a sandbag on him from an upper floor).
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: The gravedigger in Don Juan Tenorio doesn't seem at all fazed to be speaking with dead people. He is actually the one that tells Don Juan that he is indeed dead.