Follow TV Tropes

Following

Web Animation / ONE

Go To

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/2f09fa31_1803_43be_9b26_a067a303b686.png
The group of sixnote . And don't ask about the host... he's just air.note 

ONEnote  (also referred to informally as "hfjONE") is yet another Object Show created by Cheesy Hfj (the same guy who made the joke show called Battle for Circle) that premiered on June 11th, 2020 and ended on August 21, 2022. It has a group of objects competing for the chance of a wish for anything their heart desires.

However, things get complicated because this isn't a typical contest: the objects came from different parallel universes. All contestants have been suddenly and forcibly teleported to the Plane (a non-descriptive grass field which spreads vastly over god-knows-where) by Airy, an invisible host lackluster in both personality and ideas, in order to compete against their will in his ill-prepared, simple competition.

ONE is best described as a full-on Genre Deconstruction of the typical Object Show format. Throughout its two seasons, both inside and outside the competition, it explores conventions such as simple names, featureless planes, easy reincarnations, and the Planet of Hats that gives rise to objects with human personalities - as well as how those personalities fall apart over the course of a manufactured game show.

The show originally started out with an economy-sized cast of six before Airy kept adding more and more contestants every episode until there are 18 players as of current. note 

Click here to watch ONE, 'kay bye.

After season 2 concluded, a spinoff series called "ONE Investigations" premiered on February 13, 2024. It deals with the various background characters who were related to the contestants in the main show.

This cartoon provides examples of:

  • Arc Number: There are 18 contestants and 18 episodes.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Moldy gets a major focus in "Rhetorical Molds".
  • A Dog Named "Dog": An interesting aversion of this trope for the first batch of contestants since they do have human names but the host gave them nicknames based on what objects they happen to be. However, the host plays it straight as Airy is literally just air.
    • Not only that but the idea of this is conversed and deconstructed. The contestants point out that the idea of objects being named what they are reduces them to just objects and not beings with their own feelings and personalities.
    • Later down the line, it’s revealed Airy isn’t just air, so even he doesn’t fit this trope (although his real name is never revealed)
    • This is also played straight with some of the other batch contestants.
  • Allegorical Character: The cast represents the different aspects of what you would find in Object Shows.
    • The Second Batch are the typical contestants for more light-hearted but run-of-the-mill contests. This is because their existence sums up to being just their object and nothing more due to coming from a world where they must hide their sentience from the co-inhabiting humans. As such, they are direct Foils to The First Batch since they have nothing better to do but compete.
    • The Third Batch already by looking at them are the definition of joke characters from Joke Shows as their off-putting character designs and quirks are never meant to be taken seriously. They serve as comedic relief, which really didn't help the contestants' situation, and were eliminated one by one until the finale.
  • A Lizard Named "Liz": Airy, who is already a common example of this trope, has a penchant for giving the contestants self-explanatory names and adding the unnecessary "-y" suffix for some, a character name format common for most Object Shows.
    • When assigning the first batch of names, Airy gives the scented candle (Amelia) and the moldy bread (Charlotte) contestant the monikers of 'Scenty' and 'Moldy' respectively. They're less than pleased with it.
    • For the second batch, there's Bassy but the whipped cream container takes this trope a notch by having the ridiculous-sounding "Whippy Creamy."
    • The third batch breaks the trend with Abstracty and Texty already presumably having these names before the show instead of Airy naming them.
  • Alternate Universe: The first batch of contestants live in a Planet of Hats where the objects are basically the humans of their world whereas the second batch is part of a separate and secretive race living in another world alongside humans. The third batch, unlike the first two, has each individual coming from an assortment of bizarre universes that Airy is unsure of (Basically, they're what the OSC called joke characters).
  • Ambiguous Ending: So, what will become of Liam while he's stuck in Airy's world? Is he just going to sit around hopelessly and cluelessly? Will he learn to use the computer and try to send everyone home? All we know is that he's just stuck there for now.
  • Animate Inanimate Object: Yup, it's that kind of show.
  • Anthropomorphic Food: The contestants who are this are Airline Food, Moldy, Tomato, and Whippy Creamy.
  • Audience Participation: There is a form in each of the season 1 episodes' descriptions, presumably for the viewers to vote on who gets eliminated. However, it's actually subverted, as Stone reveals that the votes are all faked and really it's Airy's (and by extension the creator's) decision to remove players, not the viewers.
  • The Baby of the Bunch: Tomato, who's not only the youngest but also an 11-month-old baby.
  • Bilingual Bonus:
    • La Salle D'attente, a sort-of afterlife for the dead contestants until Airy respawns them, translates to "The Waiting Room" in French. Doubles as a Meaningful Name.
    • Liam's full name, revealed in ONE 9, is Liam Plecak. Plecak is the Polish word for Backpack. Again, this doubles as a Meaningful Name.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The season 2 finale. Airy is killed and sent back to La Salle D'attente, leaving Liam permanently isolated and alone. The computer is still intact, and Airy's game show isn't going to claim any more people, but the current contestants are still trapped in a hopeless limbo. The only glimmer of hope is for Liam to one day figure out how the computer works and send the other contestants home.
  • Bookends: Backpack's broken leg, as well as the crutches and cast Airy makes for him.
  • Bottle Episode: "Bottle Episode." This episode is the only one not to focus on Liam or his attempts to stop Airy, instead returning to the contestants still in the game and their current state just before Bryce rejoined.
  • Calculator Spelling: "Batch Two" has Liam and Bryce find Oscar Mayworth, who happens to be a calculator himself. While Liam asks him questions, Oscar tries to type out an equation that equals to 5318008 while upside-down (and another equation that equals to 69420). Downplayed in that Oscar never actually gets to press the equals button, though he still laughs about it.
  • Chromatic Arrangement: With Backpack/Liam (Green), Soda Bottle/Bryce (Red) and Scenty/Amelia (Blue) as the main and most focused on characters in ONE.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: "La Salle D'attente" lets everyone know that things are going to turn creepy.
  • Company Cross References: One of the third batch contestants is Circle, another contestant from Cheesy Hfj's other object show Battle for Circle. Doubles as a Brick Joke since Circle was last seen in Battle For Circle running away from the other circles when he mysteriously vanished offscreen. Cut to more than a year later and we found out Airy is the reason for Circle's disappearance, teleporting him while still being chased.
  • Debut Queue: The first three episodes debut the contestants in batches of six.
  • Despair Event Horizon: In the season 2 finale, the contestants finally pull out the plug... but once it's plugged in again, they stand completely speechless and motionless. Scenty even starts to tear up.
  • Downer Ending: The season 1 finale. Backpack finally gets eliminated, but it was too late for him to be. By the time he was teleported back, the apartment he lived in was put on for lease, meaning he had nowhere to live in. Not only that, but he was missing for so long that he was presumed dead. Now all he has left is Stone's notes from episode 4, one of them containing Soda Bottle's address.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Julien (the toothpaste guy), for over the past decade had aimlessly and hopelessly wandered through the multiverse after his death to the point of near catatonia, finally goes back to his home dimension in "You Move, I Send" with the assistance of Backpack. In fact, Julien is the only one with a definite happy ending given what transpired in the finale.
Julien: "Merci..." [Sheds a single tear]
  • Endless Daytime: Airy does a 12-hour challenge cycle and even during that it will always be noon in the Plane.
  • Everyone Meets Everyone: For the first three episodes, Airy handpicked his contestants in batches of six out of their entire respective universe and the contestants had to introduce themselves as he kept adding more.
  • Fake Interactivity: Initially, it appears averted, as contestants are eliminated by the viewers' votes as per usual... except, as foreshadowed by Airy being vague and nondescript about the votes themselves and confirmed by Stone during his elimination, the vote-based elimination is fake and Airy mostly just eliminates whoever he wants out of the contestants up for voting.
  • Flat Character: The Second Batch contestants and some of the third batchers given the former came from a universe where objects are sentient beings but had to be hidden from higher lifeforms called humans so their object is their character while the latter's existence was never meant to be taken seriously as joke characters.
  • Foil: The batches of contestants. They are stuck in the same situation where the host teleports them unexpectedly for his competition show, whether they like it or not, and cannot leave until it is over. While batch one frequently laments the lives they left behind, batch two is used to being treated like objects and are simply excited to have names, and batch three compared to the first two don't even have a really consisten theme due to all 6 looking really weird to say the least.
    • In season 2, Bryce and Liam. The latter has been presumed dead and is devoted to ending Airy's contest for good, while the former wants nothing more than to get back to his life and forget the competition altogether.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Bryce tells Liam in the first episode that he's from Bridgeport. The season one finale has Stone's notes giving Liam the exact address to Bryce's apartment in Bridgeport.
    • Done in The Stinger of "Freefall," as it shows a whipped cream container suddenly disappearing from a store shelf. The container turns out to be Whippy Creamy in an Early-Bird Cameo.
    • There were several hints to the votes being fake prior to Stone's reveal:
      • Voting polls were still left up and running even long after the time period ended.
      • Airy admitted he didn't bother properly counting all the votes before eliminating Tomato.
      • The viewers complained about how Magazine got out instead of Contact Lens in spite of the overwhelming majority claiming they vote the latter out.
      • The live chat isn't present anymore after the third episode as if the audience didn't exist.
    • Charlotte was brought to The Plane in the middle of a heated argument and later Abstracty mimics her by calling her "a jerkwad who manipulates her closest friends on multiple occasions". We later find out in "Rhetorical Molds" that Abstracty was not lying or mocking her as a Flashback shows her explicitly painting herself the victim when Parker asks for his money back when she spent it on frivolous things instead for her mold treatment.
    • 'Quelqu'un perit', found in ONE 6's video description is another example of this trope - it means 'someone died/ dies' in French and we see both either explicitly or implicitly.
    • Amelia tells Liam that even if he wants to investigate ONE, it's not like he can look it up when he gets back home. In season 2, Texty manages to find the planedatabase website to do exactly that.
    • The stakes that the contestants rip out together mirror their final efforts to pull out the plug.
    • A Young Bryce plays with his toy cars by smashing a small car on top of a truck, imitating the car crash that caused Airy's first death.
    • Texty made an error in entering the kill command when they said "Whoops" before correcting the mistake. Two episodes later, that blunder actually despawned Charlotte around the same time when she was on the verge of death. this inadvertently saved her from moving on in the afterlife had Airy didn't recover her in time.
    • Owen calls Liam "Mr. Worldwide" after the latter tells him he got a job in Australia and why he hasn't seen him all this time. In the finale, Liam becomes the new Airy and takes ownership of the Plane, revealed to be a self-contained miniature planet.
  • Gosh Dang It to Heck!: "What the heck is your problem!?" is said twice over the entire season, and the emphasis on the words makes it flow pretty well.
  • GPS Evidence: The notes Stone drew on and gave to Liam point locations that count as clues for him to find The Plane and information about it.
  • Guest Fighter: Circle With a Mole from Battle for Circle.
  • Hate Sink: Officer Goetz of the spin-off investigations is a jerk cop who mocks Parker and doesn’t believe his story of Charlotte’s disappearance, calling him a nutcase.
  • High-Voltage Death: How Liam and Bryce died at the end of episode 13. In episode 14, it is shown that Texty also "died" as the computer they lived in was inside Liam
  • Hope Spot:
    • Scenty, after getting screwed out of being up for eliminationnote  for two episodes thanks to Stone's interference and Airy's incompetence, finally gets a chance to be eliminated at the beginning of La Salle D'attente, to which her teammates even discuss how likely it is that the "viewers" would vote for her the most. When the time comes, Texty is eliminated instead. Scenty doesn't take it well.
    • The season 2 finale begins with all the remaining contestants working together to unplug the Plane from Airy's computer. While they manage to get it out, it stays that way for not even five seconds before Airy notices and plugs it back in, with minimal effort.
  • Karmic Death: The season 2 finale has Airy fall off the plank across the waterfall just as Liam did an episode earlier. Unlike Liam however, he falls onto a steep rock and shatters what's left of his head, rendering him dead, and sent back to La Salle D'attente. There's no telling if he'll eventually find his way back to his home, but when Liam comes across his corpse, he walks away with nothing but a look of contempt on his face.
  • Kidnapped While Sleeping: Tomato, a nearly-one-year-old baby, got straight up abducted from his nap by the host to compete in his gameshow. How is Tomato's mother gonna react when her child is missing? Thankfully, at the stinger of the second episode, he is teleported back into his crib.
  • Line-of-Sight Name: Basically how Airy named the first two batches of contestants. For example, the backpack object is named... well, Backpack.
  • Minimalist Cast: Some Object Shows have seemingly endless numbers of contestants, but this show originally didn't start out with that many players. It had stood proud with 6 contestants and an invisible host until 6 more joined the roster in episode two.
  • Monochromatic Eyes: Airline Food has white eyes while Subway Seat is a variation with yellow eyes.
  • Mood Whiplash: After making arguably the most heart-wrenching, heartbreaking and saddest ending of any Object Show to date, Cheesy had the audacity to upload this video like nothing happened.
  • The Multiverse: Introduced in episode 14, La Salle D'attente allows its occupants to visit alternate universes by adjusting a digital radio.
  • Objectshifting: It's common knowledge for the second-batch contestants to shift into inanimate mode (concealing their faces and limbs), akin to the appliances in The Brave Little Toaster, so the humans in their world would remain unaware of their existence.
  • Personalized Afterlife: An variant overlapping with Only One Afterlife. La Salle D'attente always has two chairs and a radio in each variant, but everyone views the afterlife differently:
    • Liam views the afterlife as a Placid Plane of Ankle-Deep Water.
    • Bryce views the afterlife as the neighborhood he lived in when he was younger, specifically just outside his parent's house. His sister Stella is there in the distance, beckoning him to come with her. (Notably, in episode 15, he says "I'm not in the suburbs anymore" after he and Liam return to the afterlife from Texty's kill command, implying he started seeing the same thing as Liam.)
    • Texty views the afterlife as a video of two dogs in real life running around. The chairs take the form of Froggy Chair.
    • Airy initially sees the same Placid Plane of Ankle-Deep Water as Liam, but after dying again in the finale, he comes to see it as the Plane itself, specifically the shack built by the other contestants.
  • The Place: The sixth episode is titled "La Salle D'attente" and is the debut of the location of the same name.
  • Placid Plane of Ankle-Deep Water: La Salle D'attente is this, at least for Liam.
  • Sanity Slippage: Backpack's sanity takes a heavy toll throughout the whole series. He goes from being a mildly confused everyman trapped in Airy's game show to an utter wreck following his first death and discovery of the Plane's true nature. After his elimination, his singleminded goal to stop Airy from taking any more contestants leads to his loud outburst at Bryce's door and reckless obsession with Stone's notes, culminating in the finale where he tries to kill Airy outright. Poor guy can't catch a break!
  • Second Episode Introduction: One-half of the cast didn't make their debut until the second episode.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Airy, being just a regular object, seems to have no ability to grant anyone's wish. The competition's reward is a moot point.
  • Short-Runner: The show runs for 18 episodes spanning across two seasons.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Episode 9 is titled "Scatterbrain", and the video description says "As dead as leaves.". Not only that, but the visuals of the episode line up with the lyrics, and the thumbnail resembles the cover.
    • Before using a cover of "Around the Bend" as an Insert Song in the finale, HFJ would slip in a few nods to the song:
      • Episode 13 is titled "Famous Last Words: It's No Code". "No Code" is the name of the album the song was released in.
      • One of the notes seen in "Rattlepate" is a circle with a 5 inside, which is part of the aforementioned album's cover at the bottom right corner.
  • Stealthy Teleportation: The host has this and uses it to abduct the contestants from their lives so he can make them compete in his game show, as seen in Backpack's disappearance. One moment, he's riding his bike, the second, he's just silently, invisibly, gone.
  • Suddenly Voiced: Texty remained The Voiceless from their debut to their elimination. When they are reintroduced in episode 12, they use a text-to-speech program so they can communicate better.
  • Tempting Fate: The Stinger of "Starting Over" has Backpack comfort Scenty that the competition will end soon due to the rate at which the competition is going.note  Cue Airy getting into an unknown accident next episode that left the remaining contestants alone for seven months.
  • The Unreveal: In "Freefall", Soda Bottle cuts off Airy before the latter could say what the acronym for ONE stands for. By the end, it's never revealed at all and likely never will.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: Tomato who was the first out by the second episode "Just Tripped."
  • Wham Shot: The end of "Walls". Stone is eliminated, despite the episode still not being over yet, but before disappearing, he wrote a letter on each sticky note he has and toss it in the air to form a message. The message: "VOTES ARE FAKE YOU HAVE NO CONTROL".
  • Where the Hell Is Springfield?: The Plane, the textbook example of the type of setting in Object Shows. Subverted once it's revealed in "The Plug Dream" that it's essentially just a huge ball of grass with a plug at the bottom.
  • Wrong-Name Outburst: In Famous Last Words, Backpack accidentally calls Soda Bottle by that name, rather than Bryce, showing how deeply the competition has affected him.
  • Year Inside, Hour Outside: Averted, while all the contestants are transported to a mysterious dimension with Endless Daytime, much time has passed in the plane as it does in the contestants' respective home worlds. If we go by the Stinger in "Just Tripped", Tomato returns in the early morning from the night he was taken and became evident when Liam returns to San Francisco to find out he's presumed dead in the seven long months after his abduction.

Top