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  • Nature Is Not Nice: The Forest of Doom is a dangerous place filled with hostile monsters, including the squirrels, that has managed to nearly kill Gumball and Darwin every time they've entered it. It even looks like a skull from the sky.
  • Never Say "Die":
    • Darwin and Gumball frequently make use of the transparent euphemism "iced" in place of "killed".
    • Carrie the ghost mentions her "afterlife" and having a body before (which itself was subject to a retcon), but never being "dead". Especially noticeable in "Halloween": we see many ghosts, some of them coming out of their graves, but they are never referred to as "dead", only as "spirits" or "from the underworld".
    • "The Friend" has the Chimera describing that he became homeless after the toymaker who created him died, but instead of directly using the term, he describes it as "the day he never woke up".
    • "The Origins" two-parter also eschews directly saying that the goldfish Gumball had before Darwin are dead, opting instead for euphemisms and implications.
    • As of Season 4, "kill" has become slightly more common but only in contexts such as killing a virtual snake creature in what Richard believes to be a video game ("The Uploads"), killing someone's appetite ("The Origins"), or as part of the saying "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger" in a song ("The Advice"). The use of the word in a direct reference to the act of killing someone has thus far been avoided.
    • In "The Bus", Principal Brown receives a threatening text intended to read "Stick to the plan or everyone dies." However, the sender's autocorrect changes it to "Stick to the pan or everyone dines."
    • Finally averted in "The Loophole" when Gumball calls Bobert a "potential killing machine."
    • Averted again in "The Vase" , where Nicole says "Never show your feelings because it's impolite. Sit on them until you die."
    • Averted again in "The Heist", where Nicole says she'll "kill (Richard)
    • Averted once again in "The Singing", where the Showerhead refers to Nicole as looking "half-dead"
    • Averted once more by Sarah in "The Shippening", where Sarah says the sun could "kill (her)"
  • New Job as the Plot Demands: Larry, Rocky, and a number of Recurring Extras fill different jobs depending on what is needed for a scene:
    • Larry can be cashier or clerk, usually for the video store, the pizzeria, the supermarket, or the gas station. "The Pizza" reveals that Larry has more jobs than that (roadside car repairman, head of pest control, police station accountant, etc) and, without him, the town's economy plunges and everything turns apocalyptic. "The Nobody" parodied this by having Gumball suggest a bunch of jobs to take while multiple Larrys walk by corresponding to whichever vocation was just mentioned. Season four pretty much took the idea that he works the majority of Elmore's businesses and ran with it, as "The Gift" shows Larry as a messenger and an art museum curator, "The Check" showed him as a bank clerk, and "The Girlfriend" has him as a minister during Gumball's vision of his marriage to Jamie and Darwin. In "The Finale", Larry tells Nicole and Anais that because of the damage the Wattersons cause coming of his paycheck, he has to take so many jobs, but in "The Schooling", he tells Gumball and Darwin that he takes many jobs because he was a dropout student and couldn't get a single well-paying one.
    • Rocky does most school jobs that's aren't teaching or administrative positions, like the janitor/groundskeeper, the bus driver, cafeteria worker, and the lost and found clerk.
    • Karen, Larry's girlfriend, has been seen working as a grocery store sale associate, office worker (at several different companies), and civil servant. In "The Butterfly," she was shown working the desk at the Elmore Crisis Center, in "The Limit," she was the "free sample" clerk at the grocery store, and in "The Love", she's a Burger Fool at Joyful Burger.
    • An elderly cupcake woman has screened candidates for testing cosmetics ("The DVD"), assisted people seeking employment ("The Mustache"), worked at the Justice Department informing the Watterson of a class-action lawsuit against them ("The Finale"), and worked at the town hall ("The Signature") and the bank (“The Understanding”). A cupcake man named Martin Peaches also works at the bank and Chanax.
    • There are two slightly different-looking orange men, one named John, shown working security at numerous different locations, mostly the large grocery store that the Wattersons shop at. Sometimes there's shown to be several of the same guy, just differently colored. In "The Spoiler," John was wiretapping on Gumball and Penny's phone call about The Screamening. In "The Routine," them (or orge-like versions of them) work as the tollbooth operators. Three identical looking ones including John and Al work at Chanax in "The Founder".
    • A trio of men who look like LEGO mini-figs are seen working construction all around town, possibly working for Patrick, who owns a construction firm. "The Authority", "The Wicked", “The Bros”, “The Brain”, “The Diet”, and "The Anybody" shows the mini-figs as firemen. In "The Founder", the gray one works at Chanax.
    • The quartet of prisoners first seen in "The Finale" (the butter knife, the green goblin, the dolphin-bird hybrid, and the can of spray-paint) have also been seen as repo men and as businessmen. The green goblin hoodlum is also the head of Chanax Industries, though, like the orange men security guards, this may be a case of multiple characters that are palette swaps of each other although the goblin wasn’t seen with the rest of them in “The Fury” because the businessman goblin was driving his car.
  • Non-Humans Lack Attributes: Averted with Gumball, whose body is pixellated when he doesn't wear clothes, but played straight with a lot of other characters who don't wear clothes at all. Parodied whenever Darwin is naked. He's completely uncensored except his feet.
  • Non-Standard Character Design: While most characters are drawn with a 2D, stylized look, there are also quite a few that run the gamut from paper cutouts to photo-realistic dinosaurs, CGI cubes, Muppet-style puppets, and live-action chin puppets.
  • The Noseless: Although all of the Watterson family but Darwin have noses, the majority of the cast have no visible nose, making them more of an exception than the rule.
  • Not Allowed to Grow Up: In "The Kids", when Gumball and Darwin's voices are getting deeper (as were their voice actors'), it is mentioned they are part of the 1% of people who never grow up. After that, their voice actors were replaced with younger ones (which were replaced again after they hit puberty, with Darwin's being replaced a third time). Despite this, none of the other characters appear to age either, though they do commemorate birthdays.
  • Now Which One Was That Voice?: The show's credits list all the voice actors featured in that season (even if they hadn't appeared in that episode) and only specifies character for the Watterson family, so it is hard to know who voices whom, especially since the roles have changed since season one. The rest have to be confirmed by the actors and staff over the internet—mostly notably, the voice director registered an account on the show's fan wiki in May of 2015, correcting some mistakes that had been standing since the show start four years earlier. He continues to reveal voice actors when asked in his Twitter.

  • Odd Organ Up Top:
    • Gumball and Hotdog Guy have a run-in with a mall security guard that has a hand for a head.
    • A professional fighter in “The Cage” is a giant with a fist for a head.
  • Official Couple: Gumball and Penny as of "The Shell". Other official couples include Alan the balloon and Carmen the cactus and Miss Simian and Principal Brown. As of "The Matchmaker", it is Darwin and Carrie.
  • Off-Model: Used often to hilarious effect - often for exaggerated facial expressions, which sometimes qualify as Nightmare Face.
  • One Dialogue, Two Conversations: In "The Parents", Richard is actually talking about a can of corned beef, and Nicole thinks he's talking about reconciling with her parents:
    Richard [opening a can of corned beef]: Come on, let's give this another chance.
    Nicole: Okay.
    Richard: Just promise me you'll be good this time.
    Nicole: I can't just promise that.
    Richard: Why won't you open up?
    Nicole: There's so much bad history between us. I mean, we stopped talking over 20 years ago.
    Richard [eating the corned beef from the can]: Why are you always so hard inside?
    Nicole: I guess it's a way to protect myself, but... you're right. I'll try my best to be open. Thank you, Richard!
    Richard [continues to eat the corned beef]: Uh... anytime?
  • Only Child Syndrome: The main character's family has three children, but of his approximately twenty classmates, only three of them (Penny, Tobiasnote , and Idaho) are known to have any siblings while many of the rest are shown to be only children. Colin and Felix are very similar but not confirmed to be brothers. Among the rest of the school and Elmore's many citizens, the only ones with known siblings are Margaret, Hot Dog Guy, Peter Pepperoni, Carlton&Troy, Chi-Chi&Ribbit, one of Idaho's parents, one of Ocho's parents, either Patrick or Judith Fitzgerald, and one of Leslie's parents, while Richard, Nicole and Rocky are only children.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Every once in a while the British voice actors lose their American tongue for a second. Nicole does this in some scenes where she's talking calmly and smoothly.

  • Pacman Fever: Video games seen at various points all have very 8/16-bit looking graphics (this also applies to Ocho the spider, his mother, and the 8-bit dog). This trope is possibly lampshaded by how "The Refund" has Gumball trying to put what looks like a PAL SNES cartridge into the disc drive of a console that looks like an Xbox 360 with the controllers of an SNES before realizing there's something wrong.
  • Painting the Medium: Characters related to each-other (such as Gumball & his family) share an art style. This leads to characters being animated in 2-D, 3-D, Stop-Motion, puppetry, and any variation of these effects.
  • Pixellation: When Gumball is naked, he gets this. What's extra funny is that in some frames they missed applying it, and as you might expect there isn't anything to cover.
  • Police are Useless: The police in Elmore are not only stupid, they're also made of food which makes them break into pieces whenever they're hit. According to a chart in "The Nobody," Elmore's crime rate is ridiculously high.

  • Quarter Hour Short: A somewhat odd case, as while several of the first episodes were aired as Two Shorts, both new, it’s then changed to a new Quarter Hour Short and a rerun played subsequently with one opening and ending between them. Or two different quarter-hours rerun. Which confuses the heck out of most DVRs since it thinks that it's a new episode every time just because those two episodes haven't been paired before. Close to the end of the the first season they switched the new and old episode around, but changed it back to new-then-old for the second season. Season three started with each new quarter-hour episode sharing a half-hour slot with Clarence, but after Clarence went on break, Gumball resumed the previous format and Clarence instead shared a half-hour slot with Steven Universe when it resumed.
  • Quote Mine: Seen in one of the show's trailers, where Gumball stitches together quotes from several of his friends and family members:
    Ms. Simian: GUMBALL!!
    Carrie: the most...
    Anais: Amazing!
    Darwin: DUDE!
    Nicole: I don't have time...
    Richard: say all the good things...
    Mr. Small: ...abooooout...
    Banana Joe: ...this!
    Anais: Amazing!
    Darwin: DUDE!

  • Real Place Background: The show's backgrounds are made from photographs of real life locations, including both stock images and photographs taken specific for the show. The show has special credits that thank Vallejo, the city and county of San Francisco, and Abraham Lincoln High School for permission to use their photos as backgrounds.
  • Reality-Breaking Paradox: Richard isn't just unemployed because he's terminally lazy and generally unemployable. Apparently, giving him a job is so contrary to the natural order it can tear the very fabric of reality apart.
  • Reality Ensues: Nicole had Abusive Parents that tried to force her to be an overachiever, and she disowned them in her teens due to her being tired of them controlling her life and her love for Richard. Richard, for his part, grew up with a Disappeared Dad, a My Beloved Smother, and also got kicked out of the house by his mother possibly because she didn't want him as a Basement-Dweller. Instead of playing this off as an Hilariously Abusive Childhood, both Nicole and Richard have deep-seated and crippling neuroses. They also both get stressed out about their Perpetual Poverty, and even though they're Happily Married, once Rob turns their parental filter off, it makes them divorce.
  • Retcon:
    • Carrie's first major appearance in "The Ghost" was based around her taking over Gumball's body to taste food again, and she once specifically says she misses having a body. A season after that, in "Halloween", she states she was born a ghost. The later episode "The Mirror" suggests the latter still holds true, as it turns out her parents are a female ghost and a mortal man who used magic so he could interact with that ghost.
    • Kip the reporter was originally a human from season 3 until "The News", where he was turned into a newspaper puppet.
    • Ocho was supposed to only be able to make arcade sounds and not be able to communicate with other characters; he never even showed a mouth. In season 2 onwards, however, he gets a mouth to talk or express, and can speak normally.
    • Anais was described as the smartest character in the entire show in early production text and a DVD. However, she began to be described as the smartest member of the Watterson family only, and Bobert is now said to be the smartest in the school.
    • No matter how late in the show they are introduced, new characters are treated as if they've been there forever, and show up on flashbacks.
  • Retro Universe: Most of the appliances have a very 70's/80's aesthetic (and have a lot of inventions from that time, like VHS tapes and video rental stores), but there are a lot of late 20th/early 21st century inventions, like DVD players, social media websites (Elmore Plus, which is a mix between Google Plus and Facebook), a YouTube equivalent website (Stream It), and in "The Refund," Darwin says:
    Darwin: Why is [this store] called [the Ripley] 2000 anyway? It's not like it's the future anymore!
  • Revolutionaries Who Don't Do Anything: Sometimes invoked with Mr. Small, in one particular episode he was openly called out on the fact that his efforts to be environmentally friendly will still have a negative environmental impact.
  • Ridiculous Future Inflation: Larry works most of the jobs in Elmore simultaneously, so when Larry goes on strike, in just 20 minutes, it causes 4 pizzas to be worth $9,000 and $100 being worth next to nothing.
  • Roger Rabbit Effect: The majority of the show's scenery starts as live-action photograph, but with filters and some objects drawn to blend the character in with the scenery. However, only the series finale has a live-action character interact with the animated cast.
  • Running Gag:
    • Characters smashing through the school's windows is a common occurrence throughout the series, happening in "The Mystery", "The Sock" and "The Bet". The Australian and Asian airings almost always edit out any of these scenes to avoid copycat incidents.
    • In the second season, Darwin bluntly but cheerfully (or sometimes snidely) pointing out Gumball's personality faults - usually at inappropriate times - often getting hit by something immediately after.
    • Characters, most often the Watterson kids, tend to use outlandish similes to describe things, sometimes having multiple people suggest them one after another. In "The Poltergeist" Gumball compares an electrified Mr. Robinson to a bulldog staring at the sun, while Evil Turtle in "The Puppy" is described as everything from an angry green hat to an evil wiener poking out of a ravioli.
    • Whenever someone gets injured and an ambulance is called, expect the ambulance to run over the person who got injured (as seen with Miss Simian in "The Mystery", Margaret Robinson in "The Wicked", and Banana Joe in "The Advice").
    • When something explodes, it's normally followed by a Smash Cut, such as the Rainbow Factory in "The Fan", Mr. Robinson's heart monitor at the end of "The Boss", and Rob's exploding burger that he was going to use to destroy Banana Joe (but Gumball ate instead) in "The Ex".
    • Gumball getting covered in some kind of dirty substance. Every time it happens he's visibly annoyed but ends up clean by the next part.

  • School of No Studying: The kids have an absurd lot of free time at Elmore Junior High; in many episodes, the class never even appears. Gumball, who is Book Dumb, rarely is shown to care about his grades.
  • Seesaw Catapult: The Early Reel sees Gumball and Darwin waiting at one end of a seesaw while a series of Batman Gambits transpire into a Rube Goldberg Device that they believe will launch him over the schoolyard fence to freedom. The good news: the sequence happens exactly as planned. The bad news: the actual launch from the seesaw has gone hilariously wrong, instead sending them straight between Hector's buttocks.
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: Gradually comes into effect over the course of the series. Early on, the physical comedy was far more often toward the male cast, with Nicole and Ms. Simian being the occasional exception. Around the second season, slapstick becomes more likely to be applied to anyone regardless of gender. Sarah and Teri seem especially prone to this- within the first couple episodes of season three, both have been maimed, melted, burned, and/or partially eaten.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story:
    • "The Pony": Anais ends up hating the movie and stops it seconds in. However, Darwin and Gumball thought keeping their word to spend time with her was more important, were happy that they didn't have to watch it, and can probably spend their time doing something better.
    • "The Photo": Gumball's last chance at a photo with his "perfect" face is ruined when he sneezes—just as well, given said face was extremely creepy to everyone but him.
    • "The Lesson": Gumball and Darwin pull off a Great Escape from detention, but as they're limping off Principal Brown points out they're "escaping" from school, so their parents will just make them come back the next day.
    • "The Boombox": A switch on Juke's head is flipped, letting him speak normally and let everyone know that's what he was trying to talk about, but the switch is knocked back into its previous position before anyone pays enough attention to notice.
    • "The Tape": Once Gumball and Darwin finish the tape them and a bunch of other people were working on, they accidentally delete everything.
    • "The Plan": Gumball, Darwin, and Anais perfect their plan to protect Nicole from Daniel Lennard, only to find that Daniel Lennard isn't real.
    • "The Parking": After spending the greater part of the episode looking for a space, before deciding out of desperation to park anywhere, the Wattersons end up parking in front of their own house.
    • "The Misunderstandings": After all that worrying over being late and all the misunderstandings Gumball goes through to have a date with Penny, he immediately leaves when he thinks Penny choking on her food is a sign that she wants to cut the date short because her parents are coming.
    • "The Gift": Masami is perfectly fine with a simple present, everyone was stressing themselves out over nothing.
    • "The Menu": To earn the name of the secret menu item Richard needs to eat something from every Joyful Burger in town (22!) within an hour. Unfortunately this leaves him literally too stuffed with burgers to even get it in his mouth when he finally gets it.
    • "The News": In the end there was no robbery at Joyful Burger. The call to the police was Richard calling about ants taking one of his fries.
    • "The Code": Turns out the Robinsons haven't changed their Wi-Fi code, the bandwidth was just being used up by a bunch of toolbar. When they finally bring it back up to speed, the power goes out.
    • "The Slide": Rocky's attempt to meet up with Byrdie after accidentally rejecting her on Trawlr only causes her to see him as creepy. The episode ends with Rocky still single.
    • "The Kiss": Gumball gets traumatized once more by one of Grandma Jojo's kisses after spending the whole episode trying to snap out of it.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: The show is overwhelmingly idealistic, even if it makes no bones about how awful many parts of the Wattersons' lives are. Best shown by Gumball and Darwin's song in "The Faith", as they know full well the world sucks, but "you have to find comfort in the small things".
  • Spaghetti Kiss: Parodied in the episode "The Bros", where Gumball and Penny almost pull off the kiss before the camera cuts to reveal Drawin is actually sucking on the other ends of the spaghetti strands that were in their mouths.
  • Snap Back: Many episodes end in ways with situations barely resolved by episode's end, but they change back by the time the next new episode premieres. Deconstructed and subverted in "The Finale." It starts off as a Clip Show, but as the Wattersons begin to reminisce, the various people come to them and demand restitution for all the damage they've done to them and the town. After failing to make amends to the townspeople and having to escape jail, they decide to only way to get their happy ending is to take their destructive habits Up to Eleven and cause more trouble than ever before. This ends up causing the entire town to form an angry mob and corner them in their home and Gumball proclaims that the only way out of this is "some magical device that resets everything" right as the episode ends. It's the credits.
    • Surprisingly averted as of "The Shell" involving Penny's true form and she and Gumball becoming official and in "The Kids" when Gumball and Darwin get new voices (though this is justified as the entire episode is a farewell to the original voice actors for Gumball and Darwin [Logan Grove and Kwesi Boakye] and an intro to the new ones [Jacob Hopkins and Terrell Ransom, Jr]).
  • Surreal Humor: Comes part and parcel with a series that celebrates, parodies, and deconstructs Toon Physics and every animation and entertainment trope under the sun.
  • Stealth Pun:
    • Penny (before she broke her shell) was a female peanut with antlers. You know, a doe-nut.
    • Darwin is a fish with legs.
    • Ocho, who looks like a ship from Space Invaders, has a mother that is a giant flying vehicle. She's the mothership. Not only that, but Ocho means 8 in Spanish, and he is animated in 8 bit style.
    • Rocky's T-shirt in season two is for a band called "Bisou" (the French word for the noun "kiss") and modeled after the logo for the American band KISS. It's a French kiss.
  • Sucky School: The facilities at Elmore Junior High seem perfectly sufficient or even excessive for a middle school, but the staff members are universally incompetent/unprofessional:
    • Principal Brown somehow has had his job as principal for 20 years, despite having a fake diploma and is in a romantic relationship with one of his workers (which is considered fraternization and is considered unprofessional).
    • Miss Simian hates her job as teacher (mostly because she's been assaulted and ostracized for teaching subject matter considered subversive or controversial, such as teaching cavemen how to make fire and how to use the wheel, as mentioned on "The Pest") and is most likely still a teacher because she's dating Principal Brown, often in school during class hours (as seen in "The Lesson", "The Boombox", "The Sock", and "The Burden").
    • Mr. Small, the guidance counselor, is more of an emotional wreck than anyone who comes to see him, has terrible advice that doesn't really help others, and is possibly a stoner (Though "The Advice" reveals that he actually does care about being a teacher and inspiring others, unlike The Coach, Miss Simian, Principal Brown, and even Cool Teacher Mr. Corneille, who all have become burned-out and cynical).
    • The school nurse has to put up with Teri the paper bear's hypochondria, Miss Simian being rude to her, and Gumball and Darwin's lame attempts at getting out of gym class, and spends most of her time huddled under her desk, trying to re-evaluate her career choices.
    • The gym teacher/coach is bulky, out of shape, lets her Barbaric Bully of a daughter (Jamie) push around the other kids, and doesn't seem to care when a student gets hurt or can't do anything she assigns them during gym class. She outright refuses to perform CPR on Anton when he drowns in the pool, but rather instead uses the opportunity to teach the other kids how to save a life. The kids are clearly traumatized when Anton turns to mush.
    • The only competent worker at the school is Rocky, the janitor/bus driver/lost and found clerk/cafeteria worker, though even he can be oblivious and careless on the job, mostly due to listening to music on his Walkman. He is also known to slack off instead of working.
    • The old librarian had horrible anger issues and would scream at students for damaging things as loud as she could and charge at them. The new librarian is WORSE. She was willing to murder Anais and Jamie for trying to expose her to Principal Brown for giving the computers viruses.
  • Sudden Anatomy: Banana Joe and Darwin normally don't have thumbs, but can grow them for certain scenes. The latter has also grown ears in "The Lady".

  • Take That!: It has quite a few, mostly in the later seasons.
    • "The Upgrade" is essentially one long Take That against Apple and unnecessary upgrades.
    • "The Nest" mocks sensationalist news, showing them exaggerating small occurrences and a degree of Unreliable Expositor to them.
    • "The Comic" has a jab at improbable poses by comic book artists.
    • "The Copycat" is one against Miracle Star, the blatant Chinese rip-off of Gumball.
    • "The Best" has one against Tumblr, as well as the common behaviors of the users that frequent it. The nail in the coffin is given by Carmen saying that using social issues to win petty arguments actually hurt the cause the person is claiming to be trying to help.
    • "The Line" portrays die-hard fans as elitist and bigoted. This is particularly aimed at Star Wars most hardcore fans after the release of The Force Awakens, which complained about the fact that the new trilogy would focus on a female protagonist and disliked how the franchise got more mainstream.
    • "The Blame" takes a jab at Moral Guardians that try to blame media (especially video games) for what their kids do, rather than assume the importance of their parenting in their kids formation.
    • "The Candidate" is one for the 2016 US Presidential Elections. Gumball and Anais are playing essentially Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, and it's clear what is the crew's political position from that. Each character seems to be representing some manner of political or social issue.
    • In a 2012 promo, Gumball takes charge of the Cartoon Network headquarters, and among the things he wants to change in the network, he says "No more Ben-what's-his-name".
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: Generally inverted. Lots of male characters have feminine features (particularly Darwin, who also has a very feminine voice), while lots of female characters don't have any (Nicole is a full-grown woman and has a completely flat chest). This is lampshaded in "The Party" (Gumball isn't sure if Masami is a girl) and at the end of "The Coach" (it results in Gumball and Darwin not realizing Coach is a woman).
  • There Are No Therapists: Double Subverted thanks to most of the adults being useless- the school's counselor Mr. Small is a recurring character, but he almost always makes things much worse.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: When Rob remembers that he was always a face in the crowd, he decides to show everyone that he will become a bad guy so they remember him.
  • The "The" Title: Used to title the episodes, save for the holiday episodes "Halloween" and "Christmas" (though some Internet guides will still have these episodes titled as "The Halloween" and "The Christmas," even though it wouldn't grammatically make sense).
  • Toon Physics: Very prevalent, possibly one of the biggest users of this trope next to the Fleischer Studios shorts, Tex Avery MGM Cartoons, and Bob Clampett's work at Warner Bros. Due of the show's mixing of different animation styles, nearly every device of cartoon physics imaginable is played with and/or lampshaded.
  • Toon Town: It is somewhat unclear (and inconsistent) whether the show's Funny Animals inhabit all of Earth or if they all live in Elmore, with the rest being (more) like Earth in real life. Animated humans have been seen in Elmore (besides the Richwood High students), and some outsiders like Mr. Small note  and Ethel and Bernie Klein are funny creatures too.
  • Truncated Theme Tune: The show has an Instrumental Theme Tune, but the actual opening is only official seen in the UK version and online sources like Hulu. The US airing only has the opening whenever there's a sneak peek of a new episode (the most recent examples being when "The Return" and "The Nemesis" aired on the same week as three of the last four season three episodes).
  • Two-Teacher School: Elmore Junior High only has a principal (Principal Brown), one teacher (Miss Simian), one guidance counselor (Mr. Small), one nurse (the Band-Aid Nurse), a PE instructor (introduced in season three and only referred to as "Coach"note ), two librarians (the old tree ladies), and one guy who does everything else (Rocky). "The Bet" lampshaded this when Rocky tells Gumball, Darwin, and Bobert that school's been canceled because Mr. Small, Miss Simian, and Principal Brown aren't here. Subverted in "The Others", where it turns there are and always were other teachers for classes Gumball and Darwin don't have, they were just too oblivious to notice.

  • Unnamed Parent: Oddly, Gumball's parents aren't this in the actual show (they're referred to as Nicole and Richard), but both the credits and website used to only call them Mum (the British way of saying "Mom") and Dad. One of the writers joked that Gumball is the one who made the credits. However, some of the minor parents are this, such as both of Anton's, Hector's, Sussie's, Ocho's and Jamie's parents.
  • Vagueness Is Coming: "The Oracle" reveals that the town is going to be uprooted by something (possibly from 'The Void'). Something malevolent...
    • It was later confirmed to appear in "The Future", three seasons later.
  • Voice of Dramatic:
    • Parodied in one of the show's commercials, where Darwin adopts a deep, dramatic voice to narrate the commercial in the style of a movie trailer.
    • When Gumball invents "The ENTERTAINENATOR, he insists that you have to say it in a deep, dramatic voice.
  • Vocal Evolution: As both Gumball's and Darwin's voice actors went through puberty, their voices got noticeably deeper (especially Gumball's) before they were re-cast in Season 3. The first episode of that season ("The Kids") even makes their voice changes a plot point. And before that, it got rather unsubtly lampshaded in "The Castle".
    Darwin: Dude. Have you noticed that your voice has changed?
    Gumball: What? You mean like how I sound like a man and you squeal like a piglet on helium?

  • We All Live in America: Has its own page.
  • Where the Hell Is Springfield?: Popular fan theory is that Elmore is located in California, mainly due to some of the background shots from the neighborhoods being taken from Vallejo and of the school from San Francisco. The former is seemingly confirmed as a Freeze-Frame Bonus in "The Question": an Astronomic Zoom from Elmore to space shows it as being located exactly where Vallejo, California is in real life.
  • Widget Series: This show is VERY left-field compared to most other cartoons. In terms of animation (a mix of stop-motion, compuet-generated effects and traditional animation), characters (the protagonist is a blue cat with an orange fish as his adopted brother, and his parents are a pink bunny married with another blue cat; his schoolmates include a Tyrannosaurus rex, a paper-made bear, a cactus and a cloud) and events (very silly incidents that are taken too seriously).
  • World of Weirdness: The town of Elmore, where anything can (and will) come to life or spontaneously evolve from pet to family member. Not to mention the wackiness that happens from day to day. Don't take this lightly, though. There have been moments where it's gotten hostile...
  • You Are Not Alone: All together now: ♪Nobody's a nobody, and everybody is weird like you and me!♪
  • Your Head A-Splode: Darwin in "The Sock", "The Meddler" and "The Plan".
  • Zombie Apocalypse: Happens in "The Joy" as a Joy Apocalypse. Also happens in an Imagine Spot in "The Box".

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