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Stealth Pun / Webcomics

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  • 50 Tea Recipes from the Duchess is about a tea-loving woman transported into the body of the married Duchess Chloé Battenberg. Chloé's parents are the Count and Countess Gray, who preside over the Earldom of Gray. Since "Count" is an equivalent rank to an "Earl", and "Lady" is a title that can refer to many ranks of noble women (including Countess), that would make them "Earl Gray" and "Lady Gray."
  • In this episode of Adventures in ASCII (a strip where the characters are letters and other printables), Miss B reacts with a stony silence upon learning that Bold H is taking the guest Miss Delta (she's from @hens) down the river to see the estuary.
    Miss B: ...
    Bold H: What?
    Miss B: I didn't say anything.
    Bold H: It was the way you didn't say it.
    • Here's another one from the same comic about an injured number. Apparently a three falling in a forest does indeed make a sound.
    • Even better; it inverts the punchline.
  • The Adventures of Dr. McNinja
    • The comic provides you with this image of a train accident to use if your forum discussion gets off topic it has been derailed. Additionally, your train of thought has been broken.
    • Also, there's one bit of alt text that imagines Dr. McNinja being followed on a quest by his refrigerator. A subsequent panel gives alt text of the fridge huffing as it tries to keep up. His refrigerator is running.
    • First Gordito shoots the undead, then the uncola. The alt text informs us that next time, Gordito shoots a dusty old book. He shoots the unread.
    • The McNinja family is provided with holy weapons to defeat a ghost. Dark Smoke Puncher gets nunchucks made from the bones of Mother Theresa.
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    • Doc walks into a room and encounters a barrage of thrown objects. Chuck is chucking things at him.
    • Mistaken for an example in-universe: The Doctor thinks his brother's ninja name Dark Smoke Puncher is silly. In "Space Savers", Dark Smoke Puncher is acting as Mission Control while the Doctor goes on a quest with Chuck Goodrich where he ends up being attacked by ghosts made of dark smoke. When Chuck tells Dark Smoke Puncher about this and asks for help, he thinks they're making it up to make fun of his name.
  • In the Pokemon fancomic Alterity, one of Robin's Pokemon had the previous nickname of Dante. Given that Dante is a fire type that makes him Dante's Inferno.
  • Apricot Cookie(s)! has Apricot barraging her friend with compliments in order to bum a ride to school. Her friend's name happens to be "Butter"—as in, "buttering her up".
    • Moonlight Spritzer keeps her tit (her bird) between her tits (her breasts).
  • This Arthur, King of Time and Space strip has the stated punchline "Beware of Greek bearins GIFs", but leaves out the obvious "Trojan horse" joke.
  • Awful Hospital:
    • The head surgeon is little more than a human circulatory system given independent life. Her name? Circula Tori.
    • The receptionist is an amoeba called "Zoe." Her last name is unknown, but it's probably Plankton.
  • This Basic Instructions strip has Scott suggest that his friend get a job driving a rickshaw as a getaway vehicle for criminals. The idea is already so goofy that you might miss the other joke: his friend is named Rick.
  • In The Bedfellows strip "Board Meeting," Fatigue's bosses get hot and bothered (and, eventually, kinky) as he explains his blueprints for a ballroom. It's "artistic masturbation."
  • Bloody Urban features a character with blue hair named Pandora.
  • On his character page for Brawl in the Family, Luigi is shown playing violin, with the sheet music across the top of the image labeled "Violin II". Second fiddle, anyone?
  • In City Face, the fairy Torus convinces the pigeon City Face that he has become a human businessman. She then gives him a berry, which she says every businessman needs. "No! You weren't supposed to eat it!" It was a blackberry.
  • Consolers' Ultra Games and Palcom wear seashells on their foreheads... because they're shell companies.
  • An early El Goonish Shive comic could have easily made a Hammertime joke.
  • Everyday Heroes:
    • This strip shows the characters scowling at all the taxes taken out of their paychecks. In addition to the usual federal, state, local, Medicare, and FICA, there are also deductions for "snieca", "hearta", "pollex" (Latin for "thumb") and "Persian 9' X 12'"... in other words, sneak attacks, heart attacks, thumb tacks, and carpet tacks.
    • Also, there seems to be a chain of coffee shops named "Sundo" (with the bar over the "o" indicating a long vowel). Since the Sun is a star, and do ("dough") is another name for money, or bucks ...
    • When Mr. Mighty is working the night shift, he comes home in the morning just as the kids are leaving for school. He and his wife take advantage of the empty house for some "quality time" ... and in the next strip, he shows up to work smiling and singing "A Hard Day's Night". Heheheh ... you said "hard".
    • On this page, Mr. Mighty is thwarting a hold-up at the "Red Rooster Natural Mini-Mart". While some readers might recognize "Red Rooster" as a Brand X version of White Hen Pantry, not everyone will figure out the "Natural" part of the joke. In shooting dice, a "natural" is when you win by rolling a seven or eleven.
  • In Girl Genius, Memetic Badass Axel Higgs' official rank is seaman, third class. In the old navy, a seaman 3/c, or third mate, is known as a bosun, making him the Higgs Bosun.
  • Guilded Age: In this strip, the party suggests sending the "best" among them first. Payet Best is part of the group.
  • The number of examples in Homestuck (see the work page) seems to cement that if we had individual pages for Stealth Pun, Homestuck would be one of the first.
    • Just for a taste: Dave eventually becomes a time traveller, using his power to do more stuff in a relatively small amount of time. His emblem? A broken record.
    • The SORD..... Dave alchemises is so shitty it actually costs negative grist. What do you gain on making it? Artifact grist.
    • Every player in the game gets a small planet called "The Land of X and Y" where X and Y are themes like wind, rain, or silence, and the planets are often abbreviated into an acronym (ie. LOWAA, LOLAR, LOMAT, etc). Nepeta winds up with the Land of Little Cubes and Tea, otherwise known as LOLCAT.
    • Speaking of Nepeta, for a long time the fanbase was unsure whether or not she survived an attack, since we never saw her. In other words, for a while, she could be alive or dead, such as Schrödinger's Cat.
    • Nepeta dies in what looks like a Too Dumb to Live moment, since Equius had sacrificed his life to protect her, and given her strict orders to remain in the safety of the vent she was hiding in. But she (a Cat Girl) was overcome with curiosity, and it killed her.
    • A ridiculously convoluted one - Tavros is introduced trying to 'get Dave's goat' by trolling him, and he performs an extremely bad rap in which he describes being stopped by a policeman who discovers him smuggling Dave's goat as well as a goose, which is apparently 'honktraband'. Later on the word 'honktraband' is used by Gamzee, who is a clown-themed troll, and also associated with goats due to his connection with the star sign Capricorn. And it is eventually revealed that he had been in love with Tavros - in short, Tavros had 'got his goat' and it was 'honktraband'.
    • One of the many, many huge plot developments in "[S] Cascade" was Bec-prototyped Jack Noir killing everyone in Exile Town except PM on his way through to the troll session. PM is very, very angry... and unbeknownst to Jack, WV was carrying the other prototype ring. PM puts it on, and follows Jack to get revenge. This means the epic battle between Physical Gods also comes down to an age-old conflict: dog versus mail lady.
    • THE ROSE WAS A........... DISTACTION
    • Equius is an Heir of Void. He dies by being void of air.
    • Terezi is a troll obsessed with law and order, is a Seer of Mind, is based on the scales sign of the zodiac, and is blind. This is SEVERAL stealth puns- justice is blind, the blind prophet, and her caretaker is a dragon (which she has plushies of that are referred to as scalemates).
      • And playing off the latter one, Terezi occasionally engages in roleplay with Nepeta, but prefers to play as dragons to Nepeta's mammals. This would make her a scalie to Nepeta's furry.
    • In Act 5, Terezi finds and scratches Disc. 2 for Homestuck when trying to play it. This glitches the comic and renders the game unplayable. Who is the disc given to repair? Doctor Scratch.
      • Speaking of which, Doctor Scratch was the First Guardian assigned to Alternia, tasked with making sure that the Alternian session didn't fail as spectacularly as the Scratched Beforan session. To do so, he actively manipulated trolls through the Handmaid, conditioned highbloods to be far more violent than they naturally would and well as placing Gl'bgolyb on the planet as a lusus for tyrianbloods. It worked too - the Alternian players were violent enough to get through the game . In fact, it worked too well. So it could be said that he doctored the post-scratch troll universe.
    • Snowman is the eighth member of a pool based gang comprised completely of male members aside from her. The name refers to both her status as the "8 ball" and the shape of a snowman, but also as she's no man.
    • The Wayward Vagabond finds a firefly and promptly names her Serenity.
    • Nepeta and Feferi appear as a conjoined being, so you could say that the sprite is a catfish.
    • A Brainwashed and Crazy Jane tells Dirk to "CEASE REPRODUCTION". So basically . . . fuck off.
    • During the events of Cascade, what basically happened was the 8-ball pocketed (Snowman's death) while Scratching. That is, the game is lost.
    • There are two magic rings in Act 6: one that tuns the wearer invisible and one that returns the dead to life. Later on, it turns out that they're the same, i.e. it's One Ring.
  • In The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob!, Bob's unseen next door neighbor is named Ray, a reference to the old comedy team, Bob & Ray. Even more obscurely, another unseen neighbor is Mrs. Spitoonelli (a play on "spitoon," of course), with a husband named Harold. It is later mentioned her first name is Maude, referring to the Black Comedy movie Harold And Maude. In Galatea's French adventure, she rides a Vespa with the name "Princess" on the side. And the Pirate Captain of Ipecac's favorite Ray Gun is named Nancy, as in Nancy Reagan.
  • Irregular Webcomic!'s got a bunch:
    • Shakespeare in #967 has a chance to occupy "office B down on level 2". Does he want it? A dialog box for "PunGuard 2.1" covers the pun in the comic! It would have been a pun on Hamlet: "2B or not 2B, that is the question."
    • Comic #1996 seems to be setting up yet another hobbit-pun. Lambert doesn't tell the pun, and the annotation links to this very trope page. Only Morgan-Mar knows the intended pun for sure. It might have been "Don't make a hobbit of it", or perhaps "Don't burn the hobbit", a pun on "burn the habit."
      • He said it was a warning about the goods Bilbert did not destroy, which included children's clothing, also known as children's wear, so I'm fairly certain the pun will involve the word "beware", or perhaps merely " 'ware".
      • It might be something to do with wearing a habit (as a nun would do)?
      • Pretty sure that it's along the lines of "Hay! Kids! Don't make a Hobbit of this!"
    • Another example: in comic #2096, Lambert's hobbit-pun is ruined by a (rather ominous, but that's not the point) cough. Lambert probably meant "hobbit-hat," a pun on "habitat."
    • The Quintessential Fifth Elementalist. Consider the literal meaning of the word "quintessential".
  • In this filler strip of Keychain of Creation, we're treated to the Orphaned Punchline of a (naughty) joke that ends with "What I really meant is that we'd need cunning translators." See, in Exalted, your translation ability is measured by your score in "Linguistics", so apparently the joke began with her telling the king that she needed... I'll leave you to figure out the rest.
  • In this MegaTokyo strip, Yuki's brother teases her about calling a large animal vet, and then he starts making cow noises. This doesn't make any sense unless you infer that she was yelling "mou" (used in Japanese as a frustration noise, like "Rrrgh!"), which sounds a lot like "moo."
  • In Monster Pulse, one of the kids recruited by Lulenski and Rjinder to get their own monsters is Claire. She's easily the most cowardly of the four, to the point where she's scared of Luna, her own monster. Said monster happens to be made of her spine. She's spineless.
  • It's easy to miss the cirrhosis joke in this Mountain Time strip.
  • Narbonic has Dave finding a girlfriend online. She's reluctant to meet him in person. He asks her, "Are you afraid I'll turn you off?" Ironic, since she's actually a computer. Later, Dave actually does turn her off when he downloads his mind into her hardware and erases her, leading to a Shout-Out to 2001: A Space Odyssey: "Dave, what are you doing? I'm afraid, Dave ..."
  • Nerf NOW!! with a classic riddle and a..."modern classic" Dracula. "What is a man?"
  • Nukees:
    • After going through Gav's storage, with labels such as "torn vinyl" for rent records, King Luca comments "one big of superfluous word association! What wouldst thy psychologist think?" to which Gav directs him to a box labeled "duckorations." Quacks.
    • In a Bangsian Fantasy sequence, Marduk refers to Bacchus as "Dialysis," and when Gav calls him on it comments that it "makes more sense in Greek." Being a pun on "Dionysus."
  • Oglaf:
    • In one scene, while mourning the apparent death of a character, the Zoan ambassador, who is gay, is shown with a bundle of sticks tied to his head as part of his funeral garb...AKA a faggot...which also counts as mourning wood.
    • Kronar is part of a Manly Gay barbarian tribe that reproduces via Homosexual Reproduction, and states that his bloodline has been free from woman's taint for a hundred generations. You don't say.note 
  • The Order of the Stick
    • Vaarsuvius's second Evil Counterpart is named Pompey. Vaarsuvius — sounds like Vesuvius; Pompey — Pompeii.
    • Leeky Windstaff's hawk is named Kitty. As in kitty hawk.
    • In this strip, fleeing the burning city, Elan stops to break into a music shop and steals a lute. The setup is palpable, but the inevitable pun goes unsaid. He lutes the store.
    • Not to mention here, in which Roy must get familiar with Blackwing.
    • Malack spell-checking Durkon's scroll. Spell-checking. Got it?
    • The three empires on the Western continent are never mentioned together in the same sentence. They're the Empires of Blood, Sweat, and Tears.
    • In this strip, exactly how vicious Belkar is measured on a chart. That would make the part on the left an Axis of Evil.
    • In this strip, the gladitorial matchups are shown on paper. The 8th and 9th ranked fighters are Vermillius and Ceruleaus. That matchup is Red vs. Blue
    • In "The Polearm Shop", which is a Whole-Plot Reference, the last panel features a snake. Presumably, he is Monty Python.
    • When Sabine breaks a viewing screen in response to Nale's father killing him, we can see blood coming out of it. It's a plasma-screen TV.
  • See if you can spot the stealth Visual Pun in this Penny Arcade strip when Gabe sneaks into Tycho's room.Give up? 
  • This The Perry Bible Fellowship strip has one as an added bonus joke: Imagine what the hammer is saying in the last panel.
    • Not to mention the fact that he's giving the other guy a hammering.
  • This Precocious strip, which was actually explained by its creator:
    "Et Tu, Brute?" — Famous line from Julius Caesar.
    The Et family really should know better than to go out in pairs.
  • Problem Sleuth has the typewriter/tommygun used by Problem Sleuth when he finally activates Sepulchritude. What's another nickname for the Thompson submachine gun? The Chicago Typewriter.
  • The Property of Hate tends to use these every so often, adding on to the various details in the story. So far it's got:
    • The Lie, introduced in Chapter 2: Page 23, which is a cute little thing that happens to be white in colour. In other words, it's a white lie.
    • For example: A sleeping RGB's speech bubble is blank white - it's white noise.
    • Chapter 9 has Julienne and Melody cut off from the rest of the group with scissors.
    • During Chapter 11: Page 192, RGB literally steals a kiss.
  • PvP! has in one strip Brent tell Francis the following joke:
    Brent: Did you hear the one about the cannibal who dumped his girlfriend?
    Francis: Ewww... gross!
    • At the end, Brent even calls it a Stealth Joke.
  • Shortpacked! features a character named Leslie Bean, who is, as her name suggests, a lesbian... but the more subtle pun comes from the fact that she joined the main cast around the time Ethan lost his role as Only Sane Man, and now tends to be the voice of reason in Seinfeldian Conversations and hijinks, making her... the straight man.
  • Sluggy Freelance shows what happens when you try to go through a dungeon designed for several players by yourself in a MMORPG like World of Warcraft. When Torg tries to do it, all the monsters get together and hand him a gift. When he opens it to see what it is, it turns out he is, in fact, getting his ass handed to him.
  • Star Impact's Yellow, a boxing commentator, has been said to give color commentary.
  • In this episode of Striptease, in a flashback to high school, Max and Em are squirted with red paint by another student, who is then caught by the teacher... red-handed.
  • The English title of Touhou Nekokayou is "Scarlet Weather Archive in Japanese Red." This is taken from the Touhou Project canon Gaiden Fighting Game Scarlet Weather Rhapsody and the book Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red. Then someone noticed what the other halves of the names make.
    • Near the end of Create.swf Adventures: Shenanigans in a Magical Forest, it's revealed that all of the "player" characters have their own individual "Hax Sign" spellcards. As Yasora's spellcards begin to wind down, everyone except Marisa uses their respective Hax Sign spellcard, with a fair amount of success. Cue the final sequence, where Marisa's all ready to bust out her long-awaited Hax Sign: Sepiechritude (a shout out to Problem Sleuth's Sepulchritude, which everyone assumes to be a huge beam attack or something of the sort, as per Marisa's trademarks. Then someone noticed the "pie" in "Sepiechritude..."
  • This Tree Lobsters comic has a clever one. On its surface, the comic works as a relatively straightforward parody of infomercials. Look closely at the description on panel 3, though, then look up elements 11 and 17 on the periodic table. Sodium and Chloride, respectively. In other words, it's a grain of salt.
  • In Triangle and Robert, one of the plotlines involves Triangle fighting things to recover a series of "Dragon Circles," which are lettered A, B, C, etc. When he gets to the 25th one, Dragon Circle Y, he discovers that's the end of them, there are only 25. "Somehow, avoiding the pun makes it even worse."
  • VG Cats has the side webcomic Super Effective giving us breaking news of the death of a legend... Elvis. Note which Pokémon is giving us the news.
  • xkcd:
  • (x, why?): The layout of this comic, puts Descartes jokes before the horse jokes.