Follow TV Tropes


Series / Jackass

Go To

WARNING: The tropes in this article were contributed by trained professionals. So for your safety and the protection of those around you, do not attempt to submit any of the tropes you are about to read.
"Hi, I'm Johnny Knoxville.
Welcome to Jackass!"

"Because it was funny."
Ryan Dunn's explanation in Jackass Number Two for stabbing Bam Margera in the ass with a penis-shaped iron brand...or, more broadly, the reason this show exists.

*guitar chords*

And so begins Jackass (ideally formatted in all lowercase), either the most horrifying thing ever put on American television, the most awesome thing ever put on American television, the gayest (in more ways than one) thing ever put on American television, or a combination of all three. It all depends on who you ask.

A reality comedy TV series that aired on MTV from 2000 to 2002, and an invaluable slice of American pop culture for the decade(s) to come, Jackass ran on the format of each episode being a compilation of segments featuring the show's cast of nine "stuntmen, skateboarders and all-around lunatics" performing pranks and stunts on themselves, each other, and — through hidden cameras — the public. These segments range from juvenile to humiliating to gross to borderline torturous to mixes of some if not all of the four. It's pretty evident that if these guys weren't such close friends, they'd be way too busy hating each other's guts.

Jackass has roots in skateboarding culture through the magazine Big Brother, headed by series director and co-creator Jeff Tremaine, as well as the "Camp Kill Yourself" (or CKY) humor/stunt video series of castmate Bam Margera. Its point of origin was eventual cast leader Johnny Knoxville (then a struggling actor and Big Brother writer) pitching an article about becoming a human guinea pig for various self-defense weapons — which culminated in Knoxville getting shot in the chest to test out a bulletproof vest. Tremaine and his editors, upon filming test footage, found it so funny that the rest of the staff (including Knoxville, Dave England, Chris Pontius and Steve-O) got in on recording similarly masochistic videos.

When Big Brother began talks with Spike Jonze to create a pilot for MTV, the staff joined forces with Margera's group of skater friends, and after recruiting ex-snowboarder "Danger" Ehren McGhehey, local legend and Big Brother staffer Jason "Wee Man" Acuña, Bam's buddies Ryan Dunn and Brandon DiCamillo, and commercial actor Preston Lacy into the mix, the conglomeration of Tremaine, Jonze, Margera, Knoxville, and their friends created Jackass.

Media Watchdogs and Moral Guardians more or less had panic-induced heart attacks at the thought of their kids watching the show, let alone being influenced to copy its stunts. Their outrage resulted in a huge movement to get the show canned — which, ironically, may have increased its popularity, although the show was blamed for numerous deaths and injuries involving teens and children attempting dangerous stunts.

The format proved popular enough to spawn a video game and a series of movies that allowed the gang to perform stunts and skits not possible on MTV, with every movie save for the first receiving an additional companion movie consisting of unused footage from its production (with a customary .5 added to whatever number installment it was). Several movies were also released under the Jackass Presents label: a tribute to the then-recently deceased Evel Knievel, and the Borat-esque hidden camera comedy Bad Grandpa, which is the first and only Jackass film to be nominated for an Oscar (for makeup and hairstyling, but a nomination nonetheless).

Three films (the third in 3D) were released four years apart between 2002 and 2010, and a fourth film, titled Jackass Forever, was released on February 4, 2022. Apart from Ryan Dunn note  and Bam Margera note , the film features the rest of the original crew as well as a handful of new recruits. Although the team has grown reputations of being Made of Iron, serious medical concerns have persisted over how much more their aging bodies can take, and Knoxville has confirmed that Forever will be his last Jackass movie.

Several cast members also received spin-off shows, ranging from Bam Margera's Viva La Bam to the spin-off Wildboyz, which featured Chris Pontius and Steve-O traveling to exotic locations around the globe and performing stunts, getting hurt by wildlife, and trying bizarre local customs. Some footage shot for Wildboyz would end up being repurposed for Jackass Number Two and Jackass 2.5.

Not to be confused with Jerkass, although they are jackasses for a different reason.

Hi, we're TV Tropes, and we associate the following tropes with Jackass:

    open/close all folders 

  • The Ace: Manny Puig, the in-house wildlife expert. This comes through mostly in Wildboyz.
  • Ace Custom: Knoxville's hydraulic scooter, from the Old Man segment in Jackass 3D. He can pop wheelies with the thing for extended amounts of time and has three truck horns which he uses to "pick up chicas."
  • Actually Pretty Funny:
    • Bam's reaction to the "Valentine" prank in the second movie: the "valentine" covered up a hole in the wall, which concealed a boxing glove on a stick sticking out of an air compressor; the Jackass guys were goaded into getting hit by it when they had to lean in to read it because the writing suddenly got really, really small. Eventually, everyone got a kick out of it when they were subjected to it.
    • In addition, the entire crew's reaction to the "High Five" in Jackass 3D: walking towards Wee-man will get a gigantic hand to pimp-slap you out of nowhere. Even Ehren, who got hot soup splashed all over him, found it funny.
    • April Margera in "The Switcheroo," after they freaked her out by swapping Phil for Preston Lacy in her bed while she slept.
  • Alcohol-Induced Idiocy:
    • Steve-O was the living embodiment of this trope before he kicked his alcoholism, although this extends to the rest of the gang as well. When Jackass 3D was filming, no alcohol was allowed on set to help keep Steve-O on the wagon; consequently, the guys looked completely miserable doing everything sober.
    • According to 3.5, Dave is such a mean drunkard that the rest of the guys nicknamed his drunken self "Darf."
  • all lowercase letters: The credits, actor names when they're introduced, and skit title cards.
  • Amusing Injuries: Probably the whole point of the show.
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • Snapping turtles for Steve-O. He dreads all stunts involving them.
    • According to Jackass 3D, the things Bam hates the most are stun guns, bulls, and snakes—in that order.
  • Aside Glance:
    • In the intro of 2.5, Knoxville pulls one of these after stating that he wanted to honor the men who made risking their lives for humor "their duty."
    • When they're reading the valentine, Steve-O does one of these when he reads that some of the crew hooked up with the girl's sister, thinking it was probably him.
  • Ass Shove:
    • The first movie ends with Ryan having a Hot Wheels car inserted in a condom, and then inserted in his anus.
    • And then in the sequel, the Strongman challenge: high-speed golden dildo + Bam Margera's ass. It barely misses his anus.
      Pontius: Is it wrong to be strong? You be the judge.
    • Then Bam flies a kite out of his ass with anal beads... and then has one flown into his ass.
    • The Butt Billows of 2.5, which was part of a production Running Gag of trying to make farts visible (the successful product can be shown in Jackass Number Two). This WAS successful, but for some reason taken out: Lacy farts on Steve-O, who was blowing into Lacy's ass. Yes, it makes sense in context.
    • "The Apple of My Ass"... which is what it says on the tin. Then they bring out the pig.
    • The second film has the Butt Chug. Long story short, Steve-O rectally consumed a beer with a funnel and was unable to "pass" it back out, so Bam literally had to use a plunger to get it out, leading to this immortal line from him: "You better shit piss, asswipe!"
    • According to the "Where Are They Now?" special, the "Butt X-Ray" skit wasn't supposed to be a toy car up the ass, but a cell phone. They couldn't do it because the couldn't find a phone small enough.
  • Bad Santa: Who promptly gets slammed from a giant tree.
  • Bait-and-Switch: Done quite often, usually with people that think they're about to do a prank only to be pranked themselves. Sometimes it's just false obliviousness.
    • In one skit, Bam thinks he's going to be doing "The Wind Tunnel," only to get locked in a cage with a "fucking cobra" (devenomized, but still). He literally starts crying.
      • This is warped into the Snake Pit in the third movie. Bam goes into a trailer thinking he's going to prank another member of the cast, however he winds up falling into a pre-dug pit that's full of a bunch of rubber snakes to freak him out. To make things worse, the crew then starts dumping in a bunch of live snakes, which pushes him into panic attack territory.
    • "Terror Taxi" had Danger Ehren thinking he was just going to harass a cab driver with sexual and vaguely threatening remarks while dressed up as a stereotypical Middle Eastern terrorist with sticks of dynamite strapped around him. The driver, however, drives off to a secluded location, beats him up, and threatens him at gunpoint before forcing him in the trunk of the cab and leading him to believe that he'd shot some of the cast members that had come to his defense and was driving him off to who-knows-where. The driver is then revealed to be an actor who was in on the prank, much to Ehren's relief.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Preston doesn't like being covered in a hat full of eggnog vomit or getting his fear of heights exploited. He's walked off the set several times before.
    • Rake Yohn really hates mustard. To elaborate, this is a literal example of the trope; we don't mean "he simply doesn't like mustard". For instance, putting it anywhere near his food causes him to get abnormally angry; he's gone on record as saying that it disgusts him about as much as period blood, and when Bam winds up covering him in the stuff, the cast was astonished that he "took it that mellow" when they saw his reaction - which included screaming at the top of his lungs and kicking Bam's car repeatedly, implying that he's had far worse reactions in the past.
    • Bam for pretty much everyone, but especially his parents and his hometown. For Bam himself, snakes.
  • Body Horror:
    • Steve-O gets his buttcheeks pierced together for one stunt, and puts a fishing hook through his cheek for another, fishing-related stunt.
    • Danger Ehren having a tooth ripped out. By a Lamborghini. The entire tooth, root included.
      • By Steve-O's own admission on his "Favorite Jackass scenes", Danger Ehren has suffered the most consequences to his body than anyone else from their stunts.
    • The stunt that broke Knoxville's penis. Well, tore his urethra, actually. Attempting to backflip a motorcycle for an Evel Knievel tribute didn't go so well. One of the bike's handlebars came straight down onto Knoxville's crotch, and he knew he was in trouble when he felt himself pissing blood. He had to use a catheter for three years afterward. Many men would probably rather break both legs.
  • Brick Joke: In the movie, everyone who were victim of the hair buzzer still have patches of hair missing in later stunts.
  • By Wall That Is Holey:
    • At the end of Jackass Number Two. Unfortunately for Knoxville, the wall fell because of a wrecking ball...
    • The "Diamond Robbers" prank played on office workers has two crew members falling out of the ceiling with a bag of, uh, diamonds. Someone actually called the cops.
    • The Valentine prank in the beginning of Jackass Number Two (see Actually Pretty Funny above).
  • Bowdlerize: The Self-Defense Test sketch; after the taser test, Johnny dons a cheap bulletproof vest and shoots himself in the stomach in order to see if the vest will protect him (it does). Filmed for a Big Brother magazine video, the gun/vest test was cut from the sketch when it was incorporated into the pilot and thanks to MTV being obstinate bastards, one of the reasons why it took six years for a season one DVD to come out, as MTV refused and WON its struggle to keep Knoxville from including the full sketch on a Jackass DVD. It can thankfully still be found online (the vest test starts at the 3 min mark). The bulletproof vest can still be seen at the beginning of the sketch, but the part where Knoxville presents it is replaced by a closer look at the taser gun.
  • Butt-Monkey: All of them to varying degrees, but repeat offenders include:
    • Danger Ehren, who is constantly mocked for the fact that no one recognizes him and because of his virginity.
      • In Jackass Number Two, he got an entire skit dedicated to humiliating him - the aforementioned Terror Taxi, which involved a taxi driver tricking Ehren into believing the Jackass team had been shot and that he was being kidnapped in a skit gone awry.
      • Not to mention having all the guys' pubes (and Knoxville's ass hair) glued on his face as a fake beard. It gets worse - one of the guys had crabs.
    • Ryan Dunn was also one of sorts. As Bam exclaims in Jackass Number 2:
      Bam: What rhymes with Dunn? Fun!
      • And he's promptly slammed into a garage wall at high speed.
    • April Margera. All three movies have at least one skit dedicated to terrifying the shit out of her.
      • And Phil. Poor Phil. Seriously.
    • Steve-O has it the worst of them all {e.g., sticking his face into jellyfish, a paper cut in the mouth, and let us not forget the Poo Cocktail Supreme).
      Steve-O (during his intro for "Tee Ball" from 3D): Ohhhhh, why do I have to be Steve-O?
  • The Cameo: There are a lot of them. Especially in the movies. From Henry Rollins driving the Jeep in which Steve-O got his "Off Road Tattoo" to Ville Valo donating his pubic hair for use in the prank on Danger Ehren, the boys got tons of dudes to show up.
  • Cash Lure: "Street Fishing."
  • Catchphrase:
    • "I'm X, and this is [the] Y."
    • "This Is Gonna Suck..."
    • The episodes always opened with the phrase, "Hi, I'm Johnny Knoxville. Welcome to Jackass!". And it wasn't always Knoxville who said it, either.
      • It was also included in the film intros; at the endings of the first, second and fourth film intros, but around the middle of the third film intro.
  • Candid Camera Prank: One of the show's main specialties. Here's just a sampling:
    • What would you do if a half-naked man jumped out of a car's trunk and ran away, bound and gagged?
    • The guys putting on gorilla costumes and hitting the streets at night. During the Japan trip, they did it again with panda costumes.
    • Skateboarding in panda mascot suits, beating each other up (again), and getting wasted in a karaoke bar.
    • Preston Lacy chasing Wee Man down the street in India, clad in only undershirts and underwear. They turn a corner, and then Preston bolts back around the corner being chased by Wee Man and a literal mob of midgets.
      • In the first movie, through Tokyo in sumo costumes.
    • Dave England going into a store and using the display toilet as an actual toilet. He even brought a newspaper.
    • "Party Boy" exposing himself to random people or simply violating personal space already exposed.
    • Johnny Knoxville bending to tie his shoe and shoving his ass into people.
    • The elderly shoplifter scheme, and wheelchair racing — or demolition derby.
    • Johnny and Jeff Tremaine fighting in a boxing sports store.
      • Johnny and professional boxer Butterbean fighting in a department store.
    • Preston Lacy enters a port-a-potty. Wee Man leaves it.
    • Pontius dressed as Satan and waving around a sign that says "Keep God out of California." He got beaten up for his troubles.
      • Twice.
    • The infamous "toy car in bum" prank.
    • Brad Pitt (yes, the real one) being "kidnapped" in full view of a packed movie line.
    • Spike Jonze (yes, the real one) and someone totally not Johnny Knoxville put in old people makeup and pulling off sexual acts (the former walking around partially topless or having "her" clothes ripped off, the latter having fake testicles dangling out of his shorts as he walks around: often to the point where you really have no choice but to stare at his balls). They do it in all three films.
    • Johnny Knoxville as the old grandpa again riding a scooter out of a scooter store. How? Via the glass front, that's how.
    • Making out with his supposed "granddaughter" and having his "wife" come up and yell at him.
    • Also the midget bar fight. You think it's a regular "midget people beating each other" skit, but then a midget cop comes in out of nowhere and clubs on of them in the head, and then midget paramedics rush in with miniature stretchers to cart out the wounded. Needless to say, the stares were well deserved.
    • And, finally, the Terror Taxi. The usual humiliation of Danger Ehren, combined with the Kansas City Shuffle: Ehren thinks the prank is on the driver. Ehren is the real target.
  • Clip Show: The very first episode of the series is one; essentially a compilation of all of the best clips from Landspeed and the Big Brother videos.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: If it were more sophisticated, it could be called Schadenfreude - The Series. Roger Ebert even described the first movie as "the first feature-length blooper reel."
  • Comically Missing the Point:
    • After getting his ass completely and utterly kicked by pro boxer Butterbean (he had a concussion and needed several stitches), Johnny Knoxville's first question: "Is Butterbean okay?"
    • After Ryan brands a "dick farm" on Bam's ass, he shows it off to his parents. April reacts with horror (reasonably, especially since it's quite infected), while Phil is only upset because of how small and unrealistic it looked.
    • When 15 gallons of pig semen is dumped on him (and as pointed out, a small drop falls into his mouth), Dave England has an odd reaction after finding out what substance it was.
      Dave England: Pig cum?! I'M A VEGETARIAN!
  • Content Warnings: The skull-and-crutches at the start, with the message telling the viewers not to try any of the stunts at home.
    Johnny Knoxville: (narrating the opening disclaimer) WARNING! The following show features stunts performed either by professionals or under the supervision of professionals. Accordingly, MTV and the producers must insist that no one attempt to recreate or re-enact any stunt or activity performed on this show.
  • Crossover:
    • A special had the Jackass guys appearing with the stars of the wheelchair-rugby movie Murderball. Yes, there was plentiful Lampshade Hanging about how easily the Jackass guys could become disabled; why do you ask?
    • Mark Zupan, the star of Murderball, also shows up twice in two skits of Jackass Number Two, and shows up once more in the third film.
    • The Jackasses' homes were the subject of an episode of Cribs. Steve-O's apartment had an entire wall blocked by a stack of empty beer cans, a skate ramp in the kitchen, and he bragged about (and showed off) a pile of noise and ordinance violations. Chris Pontius' "crib" was a Toyota Tacoma.
    • The Dudesons, Finnish boys whose show is in the same vein as Jackass's, show up for one skit in Jackass 3D, but before that, Bam, Steve-O and Knoxville have shown up on the Dudeson shows.
    • Dave, Bam, Chris, and Johnny have all shown up on Loiter Squad, OFWGKTA's show that shares its production crew with Jackass. Loiter Squad has also featured numerous Jackass parodies - three "Blackass" sketches (a parody of Bam beating Phil on the toilet in the first movie, a parody of The Cup Test skit, and a "Pig's Feet Suck Off" competition in the vein of the egg, eggnog, and milk challenges from the TV show) as well as a parody of Wildboyz called "Jungle Brothers."
    • The Tanked crew built a giant aquarium for Jeff Tremaine in their episode titled "Pranks and Dranks!". It contained a 3-D version of the skull-and-crutches logo and a miniature shopping cart. Attached to the aquarium was a watercooler that would give a sack-tap to unsuspecting thirsty people. Most of the Jackasses showed up in the episode to gaze at Jeff's fish tank.
    • There was a plotline in WWE that involved a rivalry between Sami Zayn and Johnny Knoxville. On January 1st, 2022, at WWE's Day 1 pay-per-view, Knoxville announced he join the Royal Rumble that year, which was confirmed on the 7th while feuding with Zayn. He did indeed enter the Rumble.. only to be immediately eliminated by Zayn anyways. There was a lot of feuding involved after which culminated in Johnny fighting against Sami Zayn at Wrestlemania 38, with the help of Chris, Wee Man, Jeff Tremaine, Jasper and Dark Shark, as well as a table filled with mousetraps and the high five from 3D. Zayn would later appear on and get escorted out of the red carpet for Forever.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle:
    • Knoxville's boxing "match" with Butterbean, which lasts just over 30 seconds and ends with Knoxville concussed and having to get eight stitches in his head. The best part is Butterbean politely asking Knoxville to hit him once, to which he puts all his might into a right hook...only for Butterbean to completely No-Sell it and KO him two hits later.
      Knoxville: What's the quickest you knock— ever knocked anyone out?
      Butterbean: I hold, ah... the California state record's of 18 seconds, including the ten-count.
      Knoxville: (timidly) I think you're gonna break that today...
    • Also, Ryan Dunn's match with the women's kickboxing champion.
  • Don't Try This at Home: For obvious reasons. Such disclaimers appeared before and after each program of the show, after each commercial break, and also in a crawl format that ran along the bottom of the screen during some especially risky stunts, and all of the movies likewise begin and end with a disclaimer.
    • In the show's infancy, the warning was far less serious:
      "MTV insists that neither you or any of your dumb little buddies attempt this dangerous crap."
    • It became much more serious when one of their stunts was tried at home, ending with the show telling viewers not to submit any videos of their own stunts as all submissions would be thrown away.
      "MTV insists that our viewers do not send in any home footage of themselves or others being Jackasses. We will not open or view any submissions, so don't even bother/waste your time."
  • Edible Ammunition: The "Meatballs" segment in Jackass 2.5 has Phil getting some launched in his face.
  • Exact Words: Know those signs in stores that say "No Shoes, No Shirt, No Service"? In one episode, Knoxville tried going in one without wearing pants. (Maybe he's a fan of Calvin and Hobbes.)
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: The skit titles tend to be this in general, but this is especially evident on the DVD boxset's segment selection screens, where a title is given to everything. The TV show included lots of short, fairly pointless unnamed skits, which results in titles like "Dog Humping Skateboard," "Bam and Brandon Slapping Each Other," "Steve-O Staples Ass," and "Preston Punches Jeff."
  • Eye Scream: In one scene in the second movie, Steve-O manages to attach a leech to his eye at an Indian Leech Healer's booth.
  • Fan Disservice:
    • Any scene with Preston naked or semi-naked.
    • Wee-Man getting crushed by an enormous prostitute.note 
    • Phil Margera perpetually in tighty-whitey briefs, so much so that it's his outfit in Tony Hawk's Underground 2.
  • Fearless Fool: This is one of the show's whole purposes.
  • Final Season Casting: The CKY Crew (Margera, Dunn, Di Camillo, Raab...) abruptly left during the third and final season. Thanks to the nature of the show, their skits could be included in episodes throughout the season, so the final product had them merely Demoted to Extra towards the end, rathen than outright gone. Half of them came back for the movies, though.
  • Formula-Breaking Episode: The hour long "Gumball Rally" episode, which features Knoxville, Steve-O, and Pontius going through a relatively prank-free marathon race from Britain to Moscow and back.
  • Fruit Cart: The cast of Jackass: The Movie go flying into one at the end of the opening credits. To "Carmina Burana", no less.
  • Gag Penis:
    • Working out in a gym with tented pants.
    • Getting branded on the ass with one. And thanks to some erratic flailing about, a lot of them.
    • Dressing in a man-sized penis costume and thrusting into an equally large sand vagina on a public beach.
    • Basically everything involving Pontius's dick. From the infamous "Heli-cock-ter," to playing Baseball with it, in slo-mo 3D.
    • Steve-O in his cheetah-print Speedo. Nothing more needs to be said. It's actually a cup.
    "It's like you've got Jimmy Durante's nose in your pants!"
    • Knoxville really has an obsession with throwing giant dildos, that for the big finale in 3D, he holds an exploding bowl of dildos. (Behind the scenes, one actually knocked out his tooth.)
  • Grand Finale: The first movie was intended as such, with the team reuniting to perform the skits that MTV had told them that they couldn't film, as they wouldn't be allowed on TV.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: In Jackass 2.5:
    Wee Man: Hola, amigos! Me llamo Wee-Man, y soy un matador... pequeño...
    Chris Pontius: ...y muerte. (everyone else laughs)
  • Groin Attack: Happens too many times to count. Sometimes self-inflicted.
    • Actually invoked: Bam would rather take a dildo up the ass than a weight to his balls (hint: he still takes the weight to his balls in the deleted scenes).
    • The worst of the worst: one of the crew members (boom operator Seamus Frawley) having his balls slammed in a dictionary.
    • In the opener for one episode, Johnny Knoxville tests a cup by getting kicked in the groin by several kids, having it used as a croquet target, getting hit by a sledgehammer swinging on a rope, attempting to have pool balls dropped on his crotch from a 2-story building (wasn't successful), and shot with a paintball gun from just 2-3 feet away.
    • One involved Steve-O and a stapler, and it even got him arrested on obscenity and assault charges.
    • 2.5 revealed that somewhere within the "locked in a trailer with a cobra" prank on Bam and its aftermath, Bam managed to sprain his dick.
    • 3.5 has a montage of nutshots involving basketballs being thrown from long distances at their... er... targets. Before we see them, Knoxville states that they looked great but only followed long periods of failed attempts (1-13 hours).
  • Gross-Up Close-Up: Occasionally. For one example, in Jackass 2.5, Preston was shot point-blank in his saggy ass by a non-lethal grenade round. Naturally, the camera zooms in on his infected, saggy, obese buttocks three days later.
  • Grossout Show: Oh boy. Not every skit is gross, but the ones that are go full-force, whether they involve all kinds of bodily fluids and wastes, or show the cast's often-disgusting wounds after a stunt.
  • Here We Go Again!: The first movie ends with the entire cast returning years later as elderly men, running through explosions and rubble much like they did in the beginning of the movie. Only Steve-O apparently survives.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Basically everyone become this in one way or the other. Particular pairings involve:
    • Pontius and Steve-O. They both star in the Wildboyz spin-off.
    • Next to Pontius and Steve-O, Ryan and Bam, to the extent that the latter went through a long breakdown following the former's death. Considering the downward spiral Bam's life has taken since, one can't help but wonder whether he'll ever get over Dunn's loss, over a decade later.
    • Wee-man and Preston counts as well, which the former Played for Laughs during the "Super Mighty Glue" skit in 3D:
      (About to lay belly-first on Preston in a 69 position)
      Wee-Man: We're really bros now.
      • Of course given the lengths to which some of these go, calling them "heterosexual life partners" might be stretching it.
  • History Repeats: A tragic real-life example. The remaining CKY members and the Margeras ended up MIA by Jackass Forever, with Ryan having passed away, Bam battling his addiction and mental health issues, though he did appear in one skit (due to him barely participating in the movie, his parents didn't appear at all), and, much less tragically, Chris Raab changing jobs from on-screen talent to camera operator. This accidentally mirrored their sudden departure from the original show in its final season.
  • Humiliation Conga:
    • "Terror Taxi" elevates this to an art form at the expense of Ehren.
    • Bam's punishment for the Rocky pranks (he would splash a random crew member and then punch them to the Rocky theme), which involved a fake floor, rubber snakes, and real snakes. For an added bonus, Bam happens to have a crippling fear of snakes.
  • Hurricane of Puns: The crew visit Mianus, Connecticut. Hilarity Ensues.
    Wee-Man: Check it out, there's a map to Mianus.
    Chris Pontius: I don't need a map. I know Mianus better than any man, woman or child.
    Knoxville: Look, Rick (Kosick)'s pumping in Mianus. (cut to cameraman Rick Kosick using a water pump)

  • I Ate WHAT?!: The fake facial hair Ehren wore in "Terror Taxi" turned out to be pubic hair from the Jackass crew and a few of their friends. Some of it got in Ehren's mouth, which he unwittingly swallowed. On top of this, it gets worse — Bam had crabs when he donated his pubes. Upon hearing this, Ehren promptly throws up.
    Danger Ehren: THIS SHIT WAS IN MY MOUTH!
  • Idiot Hero: The whole cast.
    Manny Puig: Most people believe Chris and Steve-O are idiots. I believe they are scientists, but they're not very smart.
  • I Love the Smell of X in the Morning: In the final stunt of Forever, a group of the guys are made to drink milk while attached to an ultra-fast carousel. As they start throwing it back up, the rest of the cast attack them with items including paintball guns, to which Knoxville shouts "I love the smell of paintballs in the morning!" — in a Kilgore-reminiscent outfit, to boot.
  • Ironic Nickname: Ehren McGhehey is the only Jackass member who insists on using proper safety equipment for his stunts. This got him the nickname Danger Ehren.
  • It Amused Me: Pretty much why the show exists. Because watching these guys do this shit to each other is just plain funny.
  • Jerk Jock: The football segments of Jackass 3D, each of which has Jared Allen in it, just for laughs.
    Tremaine: Quick review: What's your job?
    Tremaine: (to Johnny) What's your job?
    Knoxville: (whimpering) Catch the ball... -I mean...
    Allen: DO THIS!
    Knoxville: I mean, "catch the ball."
  • Joke of the Butt: One of the stunts in the second movie has Bam Margera take a heated penis-shaped iron to the rear for a few seconds. Later, the crew shows the brand to Bam's parents.
  • Large Ham:
    • For a show with little acting, Ham Margera.
    • Brandon DiCamillo. Look up "BMX Joust" and watch him spectacularly outdo Bam in hamminess.
    • Everyone during stunts involving jumping into a lake with rockets attached to bikes (and Mark Zupan's wheelchair).
    • Hell, "Party Boy" himself tends to be this at times. Case in point would be his "Pontius the Barbarian" skit in the third movie.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: The rest of the gang explicitly had Dave do the "bare-back base-jumping" skit in 3.5 more times than initially planned as retaliation for his alcohol-induced "performance" at a party the day before.
  • Made of Iron: Johnny Knoxville has been punched by boxers (one was super-heavyweight 425-lb. Butterbean) several times, shot by riot control devices, rammed by bulls, nearly been killed by stunts gone wrong, hit with a hundred different kinds of projectiles, and destroyed by wrecking balls, and he keeps on going!
  • Male Frontal Nudity: There’s at least one scene in each movie with one of the crew members showing their penis, with Chris Pontius often having the lion's share of on-screen nudity. Jackass Forever probably takes the cake for having the most male nudity in the entire franchise.
  • Man on Fire: The Human Barbecue and its Spiritual Successor, Up in Flames (both were performed the same day) where Knoxville is burned by flames.
  • Mass "Oh, Crap!":
    • Everyone, when the stunts go wrong.
    • Everyone's face when staring down the "Electric Avenue" hallway of tasers and cattle prods in the third film; they really have to summon up the courage to go through with it.
  • Mood Dissonance: In the intro of the second movie, which has the guys running from a herd of bulls chasing them, we get an amusing shot of Bam's terrified face that slowly pans over to Chris' goofy, ecstatic grin.
  • Motorcycle Jousting: "BMX Joust," natch.
  • The Movie: Three even more outrageous movies involved stunts like Ehren peeing, eating, and then vomiting up a snow cone, all in one shot (and then eating it again). Probably the most extreme thing to ever be shown on basic cable (at one AM on a Sunday morning with A LOT of pixelation but still).
    • Ironically, even the unrated DVDs are censored. The unreleased trailer hidden in Jackass Number Two reveals Dave England taking a watery shit after the "Firehouse Rodeo" incident in which he scraped his rectum. It gets worse.
  • Mundane Made Awesome:
  • No Ending: Knoxville opted to not film a finale for the series, partly because Bam Margera and his crew had left the series midway through season three (as they were starting work on their spin-off) and to leave the door open for possible reunion specials.
  • Noodle Incident: An interesting example in the box set's commentary. All of the cast members repeatedly make jokes about horse cum, but explain nothing other than that it's a scene that was filmed for Wildboyz but never made it into the show. Bam even lampshades the trope by pointing out that no one watching will understand why horse cum is supposed to be funny. However, it stopped being a Noodle Incident a year later when the scene was included in Jackass 2 - Chris "milking" a horse and then drinking the cum.
  • No Such Thing as Bad Publicity: Invoked in the advertisements for Jackass Number Two.
    (negative reviews of Jackass: The Movie appear)
    Unfortunately for [the critics], we just made Number Two.
    (Spike Jonze promptly flashes the camera, dressed as an old lady)
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Bam, whenever anything involving a snake happens.
    • In the second movie, during the "Fish Hook" skit (Chris Pontius is fishing for sharks with Steve-O as the bait), a mako shark swims up to Steve-O. He ends up kicking it in the face (accidentally).
    • See Mass "Oh, Crap!" above.
  • One Free Hit: In "Department Store Boxing", Knoxville boxes against professional boxer Butterbean. It gets so bad Butterbean gives Knoxville a free hit on him. Johnny hits him, to no effect, and promptly gets knocked out.
  • Once an Episode: "Hi, I'm Johnny Knoxville. Welcome to Jackass!"
  • Overturned Outhouse: The "Poo Cocktail" stunt in the original series, which consisted of Knoxville being flipped upsidedown in a porta-potty. Its movie incarnation in Jackass 3D is slingshotted into the air: witness the Poo Cocktail Supreme.
  • Painful Body Waxing:
    • One episode has Steve-O getting a bikini wax. He gets one of his eyebrows waxed too.
    • In the third movie, the guys get their hands on Super Mighty Glue. Waxing and hair transplants ensue.
    • Dunn and Bam screwing around with ice sculptures eventually results in them freezing their balls to the sculptures... at which point, they're shoved off, leaving more than a little pubic hair.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Wee Man is only 4 feet tall, but he was able to hold Shaquille O'Neal on his back. For comparison, Wee Man weighs around 100 pounds. Shaq weighs around 320.
  • Potty Failure:
    • A skit in the first movie with Dave going #2 in a store display toilet had its first take result in him being unable to hold it in any longer on the way there and taking a loud, massive dump in his pants. Cue the entire gang running out of the limo, laughing their asses off (and, for a few of them, vomiting) as an embarrassed Dave desperately tries to clean up the horrible mess, giving the camera a view of his soiled underpants.
    • In one bit from Forever, Wee Man and Preston are about to replicate the lift from Dirty Dancing (presumably resulting in Wee Man being crushed under Preston's bulk) - but they don't even get to try it, as Preston suddenly loses control of his bowels. The attempt is canceled as the crew laugh hysterically and Preston leaves to change.
    • In the series, we have The Bed Wetter prank, Knoxville goes to a mattress store to test out a mattress, only to have him pee himself when he lays down on it.
  • Precision F-Strike: During the first film, Bam notes that since they don't have to bleep any language, he promises to get his mother April to say "fuck" on camera. A few scenes later, a prank involving an alligator on her kitchen floor does the trick.
    April: That is the scariest FUCKING thing I ever saw in my life!
  • Production Foreshadowing: In the cast commentary for Jackass: The Movie, Steve-O comments during Knoxville's shoplifting prank as his 90-year-old Irving Zissman character that "there should be a whole movie with nothing but this." Cue Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa.

  • Rake Take: Invoked by Steve-O via the "Rake Jump" skit in the second movie.
  • Rental Car Abuse: The first movie has the "Rent-a-car Crash Up Derby" segment in which Johnny Knoxville uses a rental car in a destruction derby.
  • Running Gag:
    • The cast and crew being the victim of a hair buzzer happens frequently in between stunts in the first movie.
    • A more minor example in the third movie is Bam inflicting "the Rocky" on unsuspecting victims — throwing a cup of water at one side of their head and walloping the other with a boxing glove, all in slow motion.
  • Safe Word: Knoxville's is "Oklahoma."
    • This becomes a Brick Joke for dedicated fans. It's first brought up in the TV show (used by Preston Lacy in the dominatrix-laden bit of the same name)...and then isn't used until Jackass 3D.
  • Scary Stinging Swarm:
    • The Beehive Limo in the second movie, which gets warped into Beehive Tetherball in the third.
    • Steve-O's jockstrap made of bees in Forever.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here:
    • In the second movie, this is Bam and Dunn's initial and totally reasonable response to the less-lethal claymore they're supposed to be shot with supposed to be shot with once they see it demonstrated. They drop a tandem Precision F-Strike on the way out of the room. Knoxville is right behind them: "That is great!"
      Bam: Fuck that!
      Dunn: Fu-cking Christ!
      • Dave England was originally meant to be part of the stunt as well, but he adamantly refused to go through with it, saying that he was on the verge of an anxiety attack. Dunn had the same reaction, but ended up doing it anyway.
    • This ends up being a common sentiment for half of the stunts on Jackass 2.5. Preston even says this after his botched "King Kong" stunt.
    • In the "Toro Totter" skit, once Dunn falls off the teeter totter, Bam (who was on the other end of his totter) almost immediately gets off and runs away so fast that he does a full frontflip over the barricade while trying to get out.
      "I am not doing that, fuck that!"
  • Sexier Alter Ego: Bunny the Lifeguard, Chris Pontius' alter ego. Party Boy may count too.
  • Sequel Snark: The first movie pulls out a final skit after the credits, a future sequel dubbed "Son of Jackass" that involves the elderly cast dying horrible, flaming deaths. While there was a sequel, it wasn't called Son of Jackass.
    • One of the outtakes on the Jackass Number Two credits features Bam making a poorly-aging plea.
      Bam: Please God, don't let there be a Jackass 3! I didn't even like doing Two!
  • Serial Escalation: They couldn't possibly think up of a crazier, more insanely dangerous/disgusting stunt... right?
    • They do offer a pretty mean contained example in the continuously self-topping "Terror Taxi" prank. As if being threatened at gunpoint and thinking that Bam had been shot wasn't enough, once the prank is revealed we learn that Ehren's terrorist beard is made from the other guys' pubic hair. And Bam had crabs.
  • Shmuck Bait: There's a porta-potty on the Jackass set. If you use it, they will hold the door shut and tip it over with you in it. Or rig it with paint bombs to cover you in paint as you sit down. Or push it down a hill. Or hit it with a car. Or God knows what else.
  • Shout-Out: Knoxville's car from the first movie's "Rent-A-Car Crash-Up Derby" segment has the number 3 painted on the roof and doors, a small tribute to the late race car driver Dale Earnhardt.
  • The Smurfette Principle: For a long time, April Margera was the only woman to have a prominent role in any show produced by the Jackass team. However, comedian Rachel Wolfson was among the new recruits for Forever, becoming the first female member of the main crew.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: There are some cases of their stunts being more audacious due to the background music choices.
  • Spin-Off: This show has had quite a few, the most popular being Viva La Bam (starring Bam Margera, who tormented his family) and Wildboyz (starring Steve-O and Chris Pontius, and basically Jackass meets Animal Planet).
    • Unofficial spin-offs: Dirty Sanchez, Tokyo Shock Boys, and Extreme Dudsonit. It should be noted Dirty Sanchez was deemed Too Hot For Television and Extreme Dudsonit came before, though is now popular in the States and has its own America-based TV show.
    • The sadly short-lived Rad Girls was almost exactly like Jackass. The biggest difference was that it had an all-female cast.
  • Sticky Situation: Super Mighty Glue in the third movie.
    • A particularly amusing scene is after Bam waxes the chest hair of Preston and Bam's dad, and Bam proceeds to put more glue on his hands without getting the hair off first.
  • Sudden Musical Ending: The second movie ends with the cast doing a rendition of "The Best of Times".
  • Take That, Audience!: Practically every cast commentary track will include a few remarks about how anyone who actually listens to the commentary is a loser. On one of the discs in the TV show's boxset, one of the cast members plugs Ehren's skate shop, saying that everyone still listening to the commentary should go visit it and buy something, and Ehren immediately replies that he doesn't want the types of creeps who listen to commentary at his shop.
  • Tar and Feathers: Ryan Dunn was tarred and feathered by Bam Margera and Brandon DiCamillo.
  • Team Mom: Bam's mother, April, is usually the only person to care when they get hurt. They thank her by turning her staircase into a ski slope, sneaking in Preston to replace her husband in bed while she's asleep, launching rockets at her in the kitchen, and placing a live alligator in her home to scare her. The last one was done because Bam insisted that they had to get April to say "fuck" on camera.
  • Tears of Fear:
    • Bam, when confronted by the cobra in the second movie.
    • Ehren as well, after the Lamborghini Tooth Pull.
    • The victims of the anti-riot mine also shed a tear in the same film. Except Johnny, per usual.
    • The victims of the "Electric Avenue" in "3D" too. They really didn't wanna do it, but were made to. Did I mention they had to run, crawl and go over huddles in a hallway full of planted and hanging active cattle prods and tasers?
    • Ryan Dunn in the first film after watching his opponent, a woman, training for their match. Not just any woman - a championship fighter who was known for being absolutely vicious in fights.
  • Thanking the Viewer: Throughout it's run in theaters, forever had a clip of Johnny thanking the viewers for supporting their local movie theater before the movie started.
  • Third Is 3D: The third movie: Jackass 3D. Lampshaded everywhere, especially in the opening and closing sequences, which have lots of crazy shots sometimes cross into Paddleball Shot territory.
  • This Is Gonna Suck: A routine reaction (facial, verbal or both) from the guys in anticipation of a particularly gnarly stunt.
    • Johnny's reaction to riding penny-farthing bicycles (ones with huge front wheels). He faceplants after riding into a pile of snow.
    • This was also Bam's reaction to "The Brand," for very good reason.
      Bam: Here we are at some random-ass ranch, and this is "The Brand." And it's gonna suck...
    • The Tee-Ball in the third movie. Steve-O could hardly bring himself to finish the intro, knowing full well that Ryan Dunn was going to hit a tee-ball directly into his nuts.
      Steve-O: (hesitant) I'm Steve-O...oh, fuck! (whimpering, as his co-stars laugh uncontrollably) Oh, why do I have to be Steve-O?
    • The Poo Cocktail Supreme, wherein Steve-O is launched skywards in a Port-A-Potty: "You don't look very happy about it." "Yeah..."
      Bam: You ready, Steve-O?
      Steve-O: (downtrodden) No...
    • Said word for word by Ehren in the third movie right before he gets his tooth pulled out by a Lamborghini.
    • You know it's going to be bad when Steve-O apologizes to his father before a stunt. Ever wanted to know if someone's actually used a plunger on someone's butthole to get beer out? Now you know.
      (introducing the "Butt Chug" skit)
      Steve-O: I'm Steve-O. And sorry, dad, but no one's gonna miss this for the world...
    • Bam's word-for-word prelude to removing his hand from Ryan's beard in the third movie. Considering it's just the hair he's got superglued to his own hand, any normal person would just go for the scissors to save Ryan from the horrendous pain of simply ripping it off, but of course, this is Jackass, where suffering is the primary rule. Of funny, that is.
  • Tomato Skunk Stink Cure: The skit "The Skunk" ends with Johnny Knoxville pouring tomato juice on himself in the shower after, of course, getting sprayed by a skunk.
  • Tongue on the Flagpole: In Jackass 2, Dunn tries to freeze his balls to a block of ice shaped like a horse. He only gets his ass hair stuck to it.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Between the cast of the show and the people who tried to recreate the stunts, there's gotta be more than a few in there.
  • Too Kinky to Torture: Johnny Knoxville seems genuinely excited at most stunts even when his fellow cast is terrified.
    • In one particular stunt in the second movie — getting blown to bits by an anti-riot claymore — Bam and Dunn end up on the floor (Bam is crying, rather predictably). Knoxville? Not only is he deliriously laughing, but unlike the other two, he's the only one STILL STANDING. Jittering around in pain, most likely, but still standing.
      • Also notice how both Bam and Dunn are wearing full face masks, but Knoxville? All he had was a pair of goggles. And he protected his face with his hand. Granted, he wasn't hit in the face, but still...
  • The Tooth Hurts: Ehren gets his tooth a Lamborghini. Needless to say, there was a fair amount of blood coming out of his mouth afterward. And Ehren was almost completely incoherent due to the intense pain. And it gets worse when it's later revealed it caused him to have a skull fracture.
  • Trailers Always Lie: A trailer for 3D shows director Spike Jonze jumping over a speeding Lamborghini. This does occur in the film, but only during the closing credits montage. No other footage with the Lambo is in the film, besides the tooth pull.
  • Trilogy Creep: The first movie was intended as a Grand Finale, with the crew doing stunts they weren't allowed to do on TV. Then they made the second movie, after a guest spot on Wildboyz led to Knoxville realizing he wanted to make more Jackass. And then they made the third film - in 3D. To quote Bam: "Please, God, don't let there be a Jackass 3!"
  • Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: One of the main shticks of the "Bad Grandpa" skit in the second movie, with the grandson drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes in public, as well as swearing at people who call him out on it.
  • Uranus Is Showing: The brand of humor in the skit where they visit Mianus, Connecticut. Bam even gets out a telescope so he can see Uranus from Mianus.
  • Video Game Adaptation: Jackass: The Game, for the PS2, PSP and Nintendo DS. And yes, the magic of video games allows the crewnote  to engage in even more brutal stunts than what you see on TV.
  • Virgin-Shaming: Ehren McGhehey is supposedly one and is constantly teased for it.
  • Visual Pun: Done in 3D:
    Johnny Knoxville: That's the story of Jackass right there... Just pissing in the wind! (which Bam had just attempted in front of a roaring jet engine)
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: Countless examples, almost to the point of being elevated to an art form. Then again, when you're working in some of the vulgar situations we've seen, this is to be expected.
  • Vulgar Humor: One of the main centers of the show.
  • With Friends Like These...: A lighter version of this trope. Usually, the group picks out one person among them, or even one person picking a handful, to be the victim and just make it their mission to ruin their day, all for the sake of the skit. Normally in the end, the gang all see the humor of it all and remembering whom they chosen to be friends with, lets it go, but never forget.
  • Where's the Kaboom?: The finale of 3D starts with Johnny announcing that he's about to "end this movie" and activating a large detonator...only for the tiny head of a unicorn piñata to explode. Nothing happens for a bit, the guys get confused, and Johnny kicks the detonator...only for every single prop around them to spontaneously explode.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: As revealed by Preston Lacy during his interview on "Steve-O's Wild Ride" podcast, at least everyone on cast has a worst fear, it's just they don't want anyone to find it in fear of constant material with it.
    • Bam Margera is terrified of snakes. Obviously, they had to exploit it to his expense:
      • In the second movie, they stuck him in a trailer with a (devenomized) cobra until he started to cry like a baby. And then they threw a rubber hose on his back. And that's after they chase him around with the snake.
      • The third movie gets even worse for him where they dump him into a pit full of snakes as revenge for his punching-glove pranks. Granted they were rubber snakes, but then they threw a bunch of boa constrictors in there. And, just in case you're wondering, they did throw another hose on his back.
    • Preston Lacy is deathly afraid of heights. A scene in 2.5 had him on top of a couple of portapotties, recreating King Kong with RC aircrafts. While doing it the first time, Preston was visibly discomforted and even said afterwards that it the worst experience he'd ever had. Granted he was able to do it later on, but only under the influence of Xanax.
      • Don't forget the stunt where Wee-Man bungee jumped off of a bridge, pulling Preston down with him. Before the stunt even starts, you can see Preston shaking with fear.
    • Speaking of bungee diving, Steve-O hates doing Bungee jumps. Which made him a perfect candidate for the Poo Cocktail Supreme. He also jokingly admitted that he might become Claustrophobic after the stunt, to which Pontius replies, candidy:
      Pontius: (To Steve-O)' Just relax, and enjoy your shit.
    • Knoxville hates needles and is visibly afraid of them when he needs to get shots after stunts.
    • Rake Yohn's fear is mustard, though it's less fear and more sheer, unrelenting hatred. See Berserk Button for his reaction.
  • Wacky Fratboy Hijinx: The very real suspicion that if some of these stunts did not originate as inane, humiliating or just dangerous rites of passage into a frat, them at some college somewhere in the USA, they would become so. One of the skits does mock typical fratboy hijinx, complete with Chris Pontius sarcastically claiming his dad'll cut him off: Knoxville launching himself from a Jet Ski in front of a frat house and onto bare ground. Togas are also involved.
  • With Friends Like These...: Bam, Lacy and Steve-O have walked off the set before due to assholish pranks done by the other members.

REMINDER: The tropes in this article were contributed by trained professionals. So for your safety and the protection of those around you, do not attempt to submit any of the tropes you have just read.


Video Example(s):



The opening sequence for the first season of Jackass, with the series' theme song being "Corona" by Minutemen.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (10 votes)

Example of:

Main / TitleMontage

Media sources: