Follow TV Tropes


Web Animation / Inanimate Insanity

Go To
Inanimate Insanity, is an animated series on YouTube created by AnimationEpic (Adam Katz). Its premise is inspired by Battle for Dream Islandnote  - a cast of Animate Inanimate Objects compete in a series of challenges in order to win the grand prize of 1 million dollars, all overseen by a living MePhone4.

The first season (which ran from early 2011 to late 2012) is complete, and ultimately featured 16 contestants. The second season is currently ongoing - 8 members of the old cast return alongside 11 new characters. It also features a slow shift in tone towards drama.

This show provides examples of:

  • 5 ** Season 2 (in a less romantic fashion) has Toilet to MePhone4.
  • Abusive Parents: This is hinted at in Theft and Battery, where Cobs shows off his parents' garage on display, which he literally ripped out of his parents' house. He then mentions that he doesn't talk to them anymore.
  • Ambiguous Gender: Paintbrush. Occasional questions about the subject lead to a number of lampshades being hung about it. Episode 12 of Season 2 reveals they are non-binary.
  • Advertisement:
  • Animate Inanimate Object: The entire cast are animate objects, like food and tools.
  • Anthropomorphic Food: Several characters. note 
  • Art Evolution: The animation, character designs and backgrounds have all steadily improved in quality through the series. Which leads to...
  • Art Shift: In episode 12 of season 1, MePhone4 temporarily switches the art style back to that of episode 1. It doesn't go down well with the contestants.
  • Audience Participation: Like Battle for Dream Island before it, viewers are allowed to choose which contestant they want to eliminate. From “Mazed and Confused” on, elimination is switched to contestant voting, while viewers get to vote on the next episode’s challenge.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Mentioning Idiotic Island around Paper (once he's forced onto it) causing him to flip out.
    • Do NOT call Baseball fat.
    • Cheesy does NOT like it when you say his jokes aren't funny.
    • Slacking off in front of Paintbrush for long periods of time is enough to make them snap.
    • Don't insult Microphone too much.
    • Don’t mention Steve Cobs or Adam whenever MePhone is in earshot.
  • Big Bad: The second season builds up Taco to be this, as they manipulate the other contestants for their own gain.
  • Birds of a Feather: Fan and Test Tube. They become close in “Let ‘Er R.I.P” when Fan admits that he’s socially awkward and has trouble making friends. Test Tube admits to being awkward as well.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The last minutes of ”Alternate Reality Show” have Paintbrush apologizing to Lightbulb for saying they shouldn’t work together and revealing their gender to her, which she accepts wholeheartedly. Paintbrush is then eliminated, so Lightbulb gives them Baxter as a reminder of her as the two part ways.
  • Break the Cutie: Several characters remaining on the show as of “Rain on Your Charade” have been negatively affected by the show’s sadistic nature in some form.
    • Baseball: Begins to have his doubts as a leader as his alliance begins to fall apart and he fails to stop an argument between Nickel and Suitcase during the maze challenge. When Suitcase destroys the alliance entirely by voting Nickel off the show, he falls into a slump and becomes much grouchier, wishing he could have done more to keep the alliance together.
    • Suitcase: Nickel forces her to steal a battery, which results in an unlucky run-in with Mecintosh, and what he tells her causes her to slowly lose faith in her alliance. The encounter also causes her to start Hearing Voices, complete with disturbing hallucinations.
    • Balloon: Struggles to make amends with the previous contestants, and as he grows closer with Suitcase, Nickel ostracizes him from the alliance and constantly badmouths him, thus making his self-esteem problems worse.
    • Microphone: Becomes frustrated by her lack of voice on her team and tendency to mess up challenges, and Soap, her first real friend, is eliminated just as they find an accord. Starting to lose sight of herself, she ends up resorting to working with Taco to cheat her way through the game.
    • Lightbulb: While not as negatively affected as her peers, she begins to feel separated from the others and wants everyone to be just like her-carefree and fun-loving.
    • Fan: Grows increasingly more frustrated and stressed out by the numerous changes to the show and wishes everything was simple again.
    • Marshmallow: Develops trust issues after she believes Apple was using their friendship to get farther into the game, and begins to have problems with “what’s real”, growing a hatred for the show because of its toxic nature in the way it destroys relationships and mentally breaks the contestants.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: In episode 6 of season 2, Bow possesses Paintbrush's hair and causes them to fly. Lightbulb assumes it was because they bribed the animator.
  • Briefcase Full of Money: The prize money of the first season is heavily implied to be in a silver briefcase shown near the finale. It's subverted when the case ends up falling into the Crappy Cliff's water, presumed to be lost; MePhone reveals the money was actually in the bank, specifically remarking how stupid it would be to carry around a million dollars in a suitcase.
  • Call-Back:
    • The Santa storyline in the Christmas challenge gets brought up again in the second season, as Marshmallow realizes it was why Apple started hating her.
    • Knife twice interrupts another character with "Yeah, yeah, enough of the six hour speeches!" - once near the beginning of the series, and once during the first season's finale.
    • The first season finale's credits feature many, many of these - Baseball's book, Marshmallow's ability to defy gravity, Salt and Pepper's "bad luck" (complete with a lightning strike), etc.
    • The second episode of the first season has a joke where Nickel ends up going on Baseball's head while the former is climbing a tree. The second episode of the second season repeats this, only for it to turn out to be a melting chocolate bar.
  • Cast of Snowflakes: No two characters are alike.
  • Censored Title: The original teaser for the series was renamed from "The Crappy Trailer" to "The Stupid Trailer".
  • Cliffhanger: "Journey Through Memory Lane Part I" ends with the elimination area about to crash onto OJ and Taco.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Lightbulb.
    Lightbulb: Alrighty sports fans, we're gonna have to dribble around those bases to get the touchdowns we need to checkmate the other team!
  • Color-Coded Characters: In Season 2, most of the contestants are associated with a certain color. The more prominent examples are:
    • Baseball and Fan: Red
    • Nickel: Grey or Dull Green
    • Suitcase and Paintbrush: Brown
    • Balloon: Light Red
    • Knife: Navy
    • Microphone: Purple
    • Soap: Pink
    • Lightbulb: Yellow
    • Test Tube: Bright Green
    • Marshmallow: White or Teal
  • Companion Cube: Box is simply an inanimate cardboard box, but the others threat it like it had a personality.
  • Curse Cut Short: At the end of the opening scene of "One-Shot Wonder", it is assumed the Nickel is about to call Knife some sort of swear.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Nickel is high on the snark, but low on the deadpan, while Paintbrush is high on the deadpan, but low on the snark. Knife is somewhere in between.
  • Death Is Cheap: Contestants are able to come back to life thanks to MePhone. The process isn't shown until the beginning of season 2, though (as lampshaded by Fan).
  • Disproportionate Retribution: When Knife comments on Baseball's "fatness", Baseball responds by going insane and punting him with all his strength into the frozen water.
  • Does Not Like Spam: The Bright Lights (excluding Lightbulb) don't like oatmeal raisin cookies, as seen on "Marsh on Mars".
    Paintbrush: Raisins? Ugh! Gross.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: The end of “Mine Your Own Business” sees Fan and Test Tube arguing over custody of the alien egg before the former gets sent to the Rejection Portal. This, combined with the Ship Tease the two had throughout the show, makes the scene look like a divorcing couple fighting over their children.
  • Everyone Meets Everyone: It is assumed that everyone just met as the show first started, other than Salt and Pepper.
  • Foreshadowing: Taco suddenly speaking coherently in episode 11 of the first season, then quickly going back. It's a heavy hint towards her Obfuscating Stupidity. Her ability to do complex math off the top of her head in "Crappy Anniversary" is another hint.
  • Funny Background Event: Frequently. In various scenes, a character that is onscreen that isn't currently speaking will briefly have a very crazy face.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    • With regards to the series' self-imposed (relative) family-friendliness - in the first episode of the second season, a voice responds to Lightbulb's question to Box. This voice, when reversed and listened closely to, says, "You reversed this clip, didn't you, motherfucker?"
    • The same episode has the "Just give all the balls to me" joke.
    • In "Theft And Battery", Mephone obviously acts like he's drunk when he has the condishawn.
    "Shut up, Knife! Shut up. What do you even do? Do you even go here?"
    • We have this gem from Mephone4 in One-Shot Wonder:
    "Vote for one member of Team Epic to be eliminated! Except Knife, because he's really the only one on Team Epic that did anything worth a damn."
  • Immoral Reality Show: The contest is notorious for its crude, traumatizing, and friendship-destroying nature, which leads to a ton of negative reception from the contestants themselves. A major example of the negative reception is Marshmallow leaving the show to stay with Bow at Purgatory Mansion. Eliminated contestants are sent off to be stuck in Idiotic Island in season 1, and the rejection portal in season 2. The latter is revealed to lead to a small closet somewhere in OJ's hotel, which made things worse once Tissues was eliminated, sickening everyone in there by sneezing on them. Fortunately court order perpetrated by OJ changed the portal's destination to designated rooms in the hotel after MePhone's 1-day jail sentence.
  • Ironic Name: Team Epic wasn’t very epic. The team had a 3-loss streak, with four members being eliminated by the sixth challenge.
  • Killed Off for Real: In the finale, MePhone5 dies permanently when they fall into the spring water at the bottom of the Crappy Cliff. MePhone4S also sacrifices himself to bring back MePhone4.
  • Lampshade Hanging: Balloon only speaks in archive audio for the latter half of the first season. He continues to in the beginning of the first Season 2 episode, but as soon as he joins, he starts saying new lines:
    "Now that I've joined the season, I figured I might as well start saying actual stuff again!"
  • Larynx Dissonance: A few female characters are voiced by males who don't make too much of an effort to sound female.
  • Live-Action Adaptation: The four Inanimate Battle videos, featuring live-action versions of the contestants competing in a battle (or competitions, in the third episode). Hilarity Ensues in all.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • In Episode 10 of Season 2, Balloon accidentally leads Baseball's alliance into a dangerous portion of the maze. Nickel gets annoyed with him and tries to convince Suitcase to leave him behind. Suitcase refuses and the two get into an argument as Baseball fails to calm them down. Balloon and Suitcase leave after the former tries to prove a point to Nickel, and Baseball gets mad at him. The scene that follows immediately after is Test Tube being her usual dorky self and talking to Fan's egg.
    • Afterlife in the Limelight should be called "Mood Whiplash: The Song". It starts with Bow singing about how much fun the contestants get to have on the show, complete with a montage of the Bright Lights being dorks, and how she doesn't "feel alive" without the game. Cue the piano music slowing down and Marshmallow singing about how the game tears apart relationships and emotional states as the montage shifts into a more dramatic one, prominently featuring the Grand Slams.
  • Morality Chain: OJ to Paper. Granted, Paper isn’t evil by any means, though OJ was the one who helped him deal with his Split Personality.
  • Only Sane Man: OJ. Most other characters have some sort of quirk to them, and OJ is even labelled "The Normal Guy" by the show's creators.
  • Running Gag:
    • MePhone4 constantly interrupting Paintbrush whenever they have a question.
    • Fan updating his blog at inopportune times.
    • Cheesy slapping his knee after a bad pun.
  • Stylistic Suck: The "Enanimat Ensanity" spinoff, featuring Ms-Paint style "animation", terrible voices, and non-sensical plots.
  • The Silent Bob: Box. While he appears to be an ordinary box, the other contestants treat him like an actual living being with emotions. When he "speaks" at a podium, other characters are moved by his "eloquence."
  • Take My Hand: MePhone4S says this to MePhone4 during the cliffhanger ending of Part One of the finale. The hand adds, "Not so hard!". Funnily enough, the usual resolution for this cliché is subverted, as the MePhones merely fall onto the ground afterwards, no parachute or anything.
  • Take That!:
    • A dubiously sincere one occurs in the second episode, where Nickel degrades Knife for slacking off and watching Desperate Housewives: "That show is terrible!"
    • In the tenth episode, Baseball is given a copy of Twilight when he fails to rejoin the game and pleads for a different book. He does not like it.
    • According to Word of God, Dough was created as a spoof of the Glee episode "Big Brother" (where a character's older brother debuts).
    • Episode 8 of the second season is primarily made of jabs at Apple - specifically, the (then-new) iPhone 6's tendency to bend, the redundancy of the Apple Watch, and the company's tendency to release excessive amounts of new products.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Suitcase gives an excellent and very well-deserved one to Nickel in Episode 11 of Season 2 after she votes him out 5 to 1.
    Suitcase: I just can't forgive the way you've been treating Balloon, game aside! And it's not just about him. You act like you're trying to protect me, but you try to send me away every chance you get! [...] What we had before? We don't...really! It's never been anything personal, a-at all! And to me, that's not what an alliance.. is! [...] Looks like it. I mean, it's easy to read how everyone would vote, so he decided to be a good friend instead by pitying the blame on himself! And this is what a true ally looks like! But I'm not gonna let him fight my battles for me! I voted for YOU, Nickel, because you've never been a true ally to me!
  • Too Quirky to Lose: Taco. She had mental issues and was annoying at times, This was actually just her cover to get viewers to like her and thus get her into the Final 2.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Microphone (Tomboy) and Soap (Girly Girl). Soap is a Neat Freak with motherly tendencies and a love for cleaning, while Microphone is loud, brash, and short-tempered. The second season's ninth episode opens with a scene exemplifying this:
    Soap: I've scrubbed my whole life! You see, cleaning's my life and when-
    Microphone: (slaps Soap) PULL YOURSELF TOGETHER, WOMAN! (throws Soap's cleaning supplies off a cliff)
  • Unexplained Recovery: Lampshaded in Episode 10. Bomb returns after exploding earlier in the challenge, and OJ asks how he came back. Bomb starts to stutter out a response, but after a moment OJ decides to forget it.
  • Vocal Evolution:
    • Apple and Knife's voices become much deeper and raspier.
    • Cheesy's voice becomes less computerized and more expressive.
    • When Adam voices Marshmallow throughout Season 1, her voice becomes progressively deeper until she sounds very raspy and masculine. In Season 2, she is voiced by Dee Cashin, thus making her sound much more feminine.
    • Both Microphone and Soap start out with high-pitched voices, but they deepen over time. The former, however, has a lower voice and sounds more tomboyish.
    • Paintbrush's voice starts off high-pitched and computerized, but from S2 Episode 6 on, it slowly becomes clearer and more natural-sounding.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye:
    • Baseball, since he's the second one to be eliminated and doesn't return to the show. However, this is subverted in season 2, where he becomes a team captain and gets a lot more focus.
    • Balloon as well, since after he gets eliminated, he hardly speaks ever again. This is because his voice actor (Nate Groth) got fired for hacking Adam's YouTube account. However, he also returned for Season 2, and Nate Groth was even re-hired to voice him.
    • From Season 2, Tissues (eliminated extremely early).
    • Dough and the "MePhone 5c/s" couple.
  • Wham Episode: Rain On Your Charade is the episode kickstarting the show's Cerebus Syndrome. The icing on the cake, however, is when Taco, whose whereabouts were unknown up until that point, returns out of nowhere near the end of the episode.
  • Wham Line:
    • From "Kick the Bucket Part 1":
    Bow:’re the one that’s lying! Maybe Kumquat wasn’t such a good friend to you! Maybe she didn’t deserve to have your friendship, and maybe I made her say all those things just so you’d see that it’s true!
    • The ending scenes have 2 in succession: After Balloon is voted out 5 to 1, he tries to run away, but not before Suitcase drops this bombshell:
    Suitcase: Nickel, I voted for you tonight.
    • And then, after Suitcase rebukes Nickel for being such a Jerkass to Balloon, and Nickel responds with his own rebuke:
    MePhone4: Y'see, uhhh, y'know how I said I'd make up for it next time? Well, it's a DOUBLE ELIMINATION!
    • From “Alternate Reality Show”, when Test Tube confronts the alternate-dimension Salt and Pepper and reveals the true nature of their friendship, which sparks a fight between the two:
    Test Tube: Actually, come to think of it... Salt's the evident leader! Pepper's just the parasite!


Example of: