Teen Girl Squad is a spinoff sub-series of Homestar Runner, in which (canonically) Strong Bad draws, in comically bad style, a stick-figure cartoon depicting the misadventures of four "teenage girls between the ages of thirteen and nineteen". The main characters include Cheerleader (the de facto leader of the group, an Alpha Bitch wannabe whose popularity is all in her head), So and So (an overachieving brainiac who lacks common sense), What’s Her Face (the cynic of the group, as well as the token poor person, and by far the least popular of the four girls), and The Ugly One (who seems to possess suspect hygiene and a strained relationship with reality among other things, but is still more popular than What’s Her Face).
There are fifteen toons in the main series, and a number of other appearances elsewhere (most notably, the first three episodes of Strong Bad's Cool Game for Attractive People each feature an exclusive TGS toon, the first two of which are interactive).
Generally speaking, the characters go on various bizarre misadventures, which usually lead to them dying or otherwise being affected in very strange ways (usually announced loudly) in every episode, which include such things as...
- being "lathe'd" by a miniature samurai with a naginata who jumped out of a bowl of corn chips;
- being run over by a race car that makes the sound "TIIIIIIINES" driven by a fork;
- being "arrowed" by a giant man who shoots arrows from his mouth;
- dying... somehow.
The series is best known for spawning several minor memes, including "ow! my [something unusual]!", and being pwned by something with the caption "[said something]'D!", "It's over!", and others. It also makes fun of various stereotypical high-school/teen/young-adult activities, such as prom, sweet sixteen birthday parties, and
Valentine's Vamlumtimes Day, with a gradually increasing ratio of directed, ridiculing humor to simple absurd humor.
A (so far oneshot) spinoff of this spinoff was created based on the several characters named "Greg" in the series. 4 Gregs is a misadventure of four such characters who each embody some sort of nerdy/geeky/dorky stereotype.
This series is the trope namer for:
This series provides examples of:
- Acronym and Abbreviation Overload: The yogurt place the girls go to at the end of Issue 2 is called TCYBCBY.
- Adorkable: What’s Her Face. "Uh... hi. I like music, and um, cloth."
- Against My Religion: Parodied. According to Cheerleader in Issue 14, sweating goes against "several of [her] religions."
- All-Cheering All the Time: Cheerleader Brian, whose constant cheering at the prom ends up frustrating, and ultimately killing, Cheerleader.
- The Alleged Car: In Homestar Ruiner Teen Girl Squad, it's revealed that What’s Her Face's real dad bought her a new car because "he felt guilty about all the wrongs he done". Said car looks like something right out of the early 1900s.
- All Girls Like Ponies: In the Decemberween Special, the text on Cheerleader's intro card is "wants a pony".
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: So and So has shown an attraction to Tompkins, considering him a "renegade", though he's more or less your typical high school slacker.
- All Guys Want Cheerleaders: Subverted. Amongst the group, Cheerleader actually gets the least amount of attention from boys over the course of the series.
- All Women Are Lustful"What time is it?"
"What time is it?"
"What we gonna get?"
"How we gonna get 'em?"
"Uh... um... er..."
- Alpha Bitch: Cheerleader is extremely vain and shallow, and berates the other girls constantly. However, as noted above, her popularity is all in her head. Most of the boys she hits on seem to think of her as an Abhorrent Admirer, and the rest of the squad resents her — when she gets run over by a car in Issue 9, they all celebrate her death and how they can now act like themselves again.
- Amusing Injuries: Characters frequently get injured and/or killed in some bizarre fashion, such as getting kneecapped by an alien, squashed by a sack of potatoes, hit by a "wave o' babies", crushed by a giant twenty-sided die, tossed like a caber, run over by a Formula 1 race-car driven by a fork, and more.
- Anachronism Stew: Cave Girl Squad as a whole.
- And Call Him "George"!: Parodied in Cave Girl Squad.Girl: Aw, hi, prit kit! I'll feed you, and take care of you, and call you Miss Jumblepuddins!Strong Bad: Sensing her young is in danger of receiving a lame name, the mother tiger picks up her prey's scent, and closes in...
- And There Was Much Rejoicing: In Issue 9, Cheerleader dies, and the rest of them celebrate... shortly before dying.
- Animation Bump:
- Two issues are in color: Issue 10 and Baddest of the Bands' Teen Girl Squad Meets Limozeen!
- Issue 10 has more animation frames than other Homestar Runner cartoons due to the brief 3D sequence, but Teen Girl Squad's use of Limited Animation makes it impossible to notice until the sequence where Strong Bad is making out with his paper.
- Are You Pondering What I'm Pondering?: Issue 8 opens with the girls listening to the opening announcements, which mentions that the day's lunch is "a breadtangle of pizza", Tompkins is being called to the principal's office, and there's a Battle of the Bands coming up.Cheerleader: You hear that, girls?What’s Her Face: Pizza belongs in a triangle!So and So: That Tompkins is such a renegade!Cheerleader: No, yous guys! The Battle of the Bands!
- Armed with Canon: In-universe. The Mind Screw ending of "4 Gregs", where the girls and the Gregs have each been drawing each others' comics. The scene cuts back and forth between them arguing over the accuracy of the preceding shot.
- Arson, Murder, and JaywalkingSci-Fi Greg: Tonight, new Earthlings... tonight, we go... TO A VARSITY FOOTBALL GAME!(everyone else gasps)D n' D Greg: Into the dragon's lair?Japanese Culture Greg: Into the robotic dragon's lair?Open Source Greg: Into the Apple store?
- Artistic License:
- In Issue 5, Thomas the alien is skateboarding and does a "Late 360 Shove-It to Boneless'd", which should be impossible because a boneless is a type of ollie (jumping) move.
- Strong Bad describes So and So being "Twelve-Sided Die'd" in issue 8, when the die she's been crushed with clearly has twenty sides.
- Science-Fiction Greg brags about his experience points going 'into the triple digits' as if it were a big achievement. In most versions of D&D, characters become level two at 1000 experience points, meaning any triple digits value is still a level one character. Justified as an in-universe example, since D n' D Greg accuses him of biting his style, implying he doesn't actually know as much about fantasy as he does about sci-fi.
- A Scotsman caber-tosses Cheerleader in Issue 10 and is disgusted that his throw only goes 23 meters. Success in the caber toss is measured by straightness, not distance. The creators point out their mistake in the DVD commentary.
- In Issue 6, So and So does a triple salchow into the lion's mouth. However, a triple salchow is actually a figure skating jump; not a dive, as So and So implies.
- Ascended Extra: Japanese Culture Greg and Open Source Greg initially had one appearance together in an Easter Egg as unnamed background characters. Later on, they star in the spin-off short "4 Gregs".
- Attractiveness Discrimination: What’s Her Face sometimes gets this for her slovenly appearance. In Issue 5, the girls refer to her in a postcard as "the one with baggy pants", and in Teen Girl Squad Meets Limozeen one of the band members says to her that she's "never gonna date a rock star with baggy jeans like that".
- Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: A platonic example. It's well-established early on that Cheerleader and What’s Her Face have a very strained relationship, with Cheerleader frequently finding ways to specifically exclude What’s Her Face from things the Squad does together. However, a TGS-themed Easter Egg in "death metal" shows the two genuinely getting along.What’s Her Face: (looking pleased and surprised) Cheerleader! Are you here to see Brainkrieg?(they smile at each other)
- Babysitting Episode: Issue 13 is about So and So trying to babysit Timkins while the other girls' crazy antics cause things to go horribly wrong.
- Bald of Evil: The Arrow'd Guy, a frequent tormenter of the girls, is a balding man.
- Battle of the Bands: Shows up twice.
- Issue 8 sees the girls forming a band called "Kissyboots" to perform in their school's Battle of the Bands in an effort to become "worldwide starlets" and earn "much boys". It doesn't work out very well.
- The Strong Bad Email "death metal" has a Teen Girl Squad scene where Brainkreig is shown to compete in "The Battle of the Crappy High School Bands".
- Beach Episode: Issue 5 has the girls (bar What’s Her Face) going to the beach to find cute college boys on Spring Break.
- Beary Funny: In Issue 11, What’s Her Face and The Ugly One join Counselor Shortshorts in singing "a warbly campfire song" about a "Chumbly Wumbly Bear".
- Beautiful All Along: The Ugly One in Issue 10 ends up being really attractive after cleaning herself up.Strong Bad: Whoa! Did I draw that new hotness?
- Belly Flop Crushing: In Issue 7, while kiddie Cheerleader is trying to convince the others that her house has a hundred bafrooms, a fat wrestler (who bears a likeness to professional wrestler King Kong Bundy) appears out of nowhere to squish her.
- Big Game:
- Homestar Ruiner's Teen Girl Squad has the girls all going to a basketball game to flirt with athletes.
- In 4 Gregs, the Gregs go to a varsity football game to try and blend in with everyone else.
- Big Man on Campus: Parodied with Quarterman, who comes to The Ugly One's rescue after some seniors play pranks on her in Issue 14. He confesses his love to her and asks her to accompany him to the end credits after quoting a particularly confusing line from High School Musical — a total parody of the ending of many a cliché high school story.
- Big "SHUT UP!": In Issue 4, What’s Her Face and The Ugly One get squashed by a heavy weight and a sack of potatoes after making a joke about how cool they are. An Easter Egg shows this exchange between them:What’s Her Face: Heh, we really are coo--The Ugly One: Shut up!
- Blatant Lies:
- In Issue 15, when Manolios Ugly One tells D n' D Greg to not lay a finger on his daughter (or he'll gut him like a sheep), a random gutted sheep says that it isn't so bad... when it turns out to be bad.D n' D Greg: (gutted) Owww! Sheep, you lied!
- Arrow'd Guy claims that What’s Her Face will come into her own in college... and then immediately afterward shoots her down with a flock of sparrows. "A new twist on an old classic!"
- In Issue 5, the girls go on vacation and leave What’s Her Face behind. At the beginning of the issue, What’s Her Face gets a postcard from them:We're on SPRING BREAK!! We tried to call you but we forgot.
- In Issue 15, when Manolios Ugly One tells D n' D Greg to not lay a finger on his daughter (or he'll gut him like a sheep), a random gutted sheep says that it isn't so bad... when it turns out to be bad.
- Bottomless Pit: The girls' school has a bottomless pit (named after its sports team, of course). So and So falls in and gets stuck.What’s Her Face: When you fall in a bottomless pit, you die of starvation.
- Brand X: Diet Brown soda.
- Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: What’s Her Face decides to clean out her locker in Issue 14, throwing things out of her locker as she names them.What’s Her Face: Old papers, old pencils, old person... [pulls Mr. Pitters out of her locker]
Mr. Pitters: (hastily) I left a check for last month's rent on the table!
- Broke the Rating Scale: In Issue 6, Cheerleader's jump into the lion's mouth earns her a "3 noses?"
- Brown Note: In Teen Girl Squad Meets Limozeen, Gary kills Cheerleader with a "two-handed and one-foot tapping solo" so epic it causes her to disintegrate.
- Cardiovascular Love: Played for Laughs in Issue 4. While So and So is thinking about her imaginary boyfriend Brett Bretterson, one of the small hearts that appears over her head gets pierced with an arrow and shouts in pain.
- Canon Immigrant: Peacey P managed to enter the normal Homestar Runner universe after debuting in this series.
- Chirping Crickets: Used briefly in 4 Gregs after D n' D Greg's out-of-nowhere explanation of football.Sci-Fi Greg: It's like I don't even know you anymore.D n' D Greg: Fantasy football still counts as fantasy!
- Choose Your Own Adventure: The Teen Girl Squad and Cave Girl Squad segments from the first two episodes of Strong Bad's Cool Game for Attractive People allow players to make up their own Teen Girl Squad adventures by selecting items to see how they interact with the girls (and hopefully kill them off in a way that amuses Strong Bad).
- Cloudcuckoolander: The Ugly One, whose grip on reality is tenuous at best. She's done things such as stick her head in the sand when nervous, and her title card descriptions mostly consist of puns and non-sequiturs; one even explicitly states she's "actually crazy."
- College Radio: It's well-established that Strong Bad does not like college radio. This carries over into this series as a Brick Joke of sorts and shows up twice:
- What’s Her Face's title card descriptions are intended to paint her as awkward and uncool. Her description in Issue 8 was "college radio!"
- In Teen Girl Squad Meets Limozeen!, Perry mockingly suggests to What’s Her Face that she should "just go listen to some college music in an abandoned warehouse or something" and punts her after she claims to not liking the kind of music Limozeen plays.
- Continuity Nod: In a rare example, Issue 13 references So and So's incarceration in Issue 11.
- Cool Loser: What’s Her Face. Her sense of snark, common sense, and Woobie status have made her the most popular of the Squad within the fandom. Hell, she was the image for the Cool Loser page at one point. Given these traits, you start to wonder why she isn't popular in-universe as well.
- Counting to Potato: Demonstrated in Issue 7, in which the girls are seen as babies, opening with So and So and The Ugly One doing their own version of pattycake:The Ugly One: One inch!
So and So: Two inch!
The Ugly One: Three inch!
So and So: Four inch!
The Ugly One: Um, that's as high as I can count.
What’s Her Face: (coming in) I can count to G!
Cheerleader: (coming in) That's nothing. I can count to purple backwards!
- Creator Cameo: In-Universe, Strong Bad likes to insert himself into the comics under various roles. He's appeared as the girls' high school "prinicpal", a dancing robot, and a leprechaun, amongst others.
- Crossdressing Voices: In-Universe, the girls' (as well as everyone else's) voices are all done by Strong Bad.
- Cute Little Fangs: On occasion, one of the girls will be randomly drawn with fangs, usually So and So.
- Cuteness Overload: In Cave Girl Squad, giving one of the girls the dog early on causes her to go crazy out of excitement.
- Dada Comics: This "comic" is Strong Bad's outlet for creativity. Strange humor is to be expected.
- Deadpan Snarker: What’s Her Face. She was voted Least Likely To Care in high school.
- Demoted to Extra: Tompkins's was originally a major recurring character for a few issues until the Gregs were introduced and he gradually stopped appearing. An easter egg in Issue 15 lampshades that "there was a time where [he] would've been massacred as one of those girls' prom dates".
- Department of Redundancy Department: In Decomposing Pumpkins, the drummer's shirt reads "drummers play a drum."
- Diabolus ex Machina: Arguably the whole point of the comic. It's drawn by Strong Bad—'nuff said.
- Digital Avatar: In Issue 15, Open Source Greg sends a game avatar to the prom "in his stead". Don't even try to wrap your head around that.
- Ditzy Genius: So and So is a scholastic overachiever, but she also does things like talk to (and break up with) her imaginary boyfriend Brett Bretterson, and in Issue 13 she tries to get Tompkins's baby brother to study for the SATs.
- Do Wrong, Right: In Issue 8, when Tompkins gets called to the principal's office.Tompkins: Aw, come on, Prinicpal [sic]note Strong Bad! I only stole one Sega tape!
Prinicpal Strong Bad: That's just it, Tompkins. You could have stolen upwards of one Sega tape!
- Driven to Suicide: In Issue 13, So and So elects to throw herself in the garbage disposal rather than go back to jail.
- Drives Like Crazy: The "crazy learner's permit girl" in Issue 9, who drives over Cheerleader in less than 2 pages. "10 o'clock and 2 o'clock!!"
- Early Installment Weirdness:
- The girls are largely interchangeable in personality in the first couple Issues; they're only distinguished by appearance, some Informed Attributes provided by the opening sequence, and Cheerleader clearly being The Leader. Their distinct personalities don't start showing up until Issues 3-5.
- So and So is called Kristen/Kristina (after one of the 4 girls mentioned in the email sent to Strong Bad) in the first Issue, as if it was her real name. This is completely dropped in all later Issues.
- The first few Issues are collections of random scenes with no real plot structure. Later issues, while still heavy on the randomness, have defined plots.
- Eat the Evidence: Towards the end of Issue 10, Strong Bad is caught trying to make out with a drawing of the "Hotgly One", and tries to save face by claiming the picture is a piece of pizza and stuffing it into his mouth. Strong Sad isn't fooled for a moment.Strong Sad: Uh, Strong Bad, were you just first-basin' it with that piece of loose-leaf?
- Electric Boogaloo: Parodied in Issue 10 with "ARROW'D 2".
- Emoticon: Played for Laughs in Issue 12. While Cheerleader is texting with the class president, she attempts to enter an emoticon that is supposed to look like a heart and a "frontways cupid": <B >KO)-> However, neither the Class Prez nor the Wireless Wizard can understand it.Class Prez: Whaddaya mean I'm less than B?Wireless Wizard: [...] what's this other text mess?
Cheerleader: That's a frontways Cupid.
Wireless Wizard: Looks more like a USB dongle goblin!
- Everybody Lives: The main cast tends to get killed off, but they all survive in Issue 2, Issue 3, and the Decemberween special.
- Everything's Better with Penguins: In the Teen Girl Squad segment of Homestar Ruiner, you can have a robot penguin appear out of nowhere and GuesswhatVOIP The Ugly One for smuggling a candy bar "past concession stand security".
- Everything's Better with Samurai: Issue 10. "Corn is no place for a mighty warrior!"
- Everything's Better with Spinning: Issue 10 is full of this trope. After the camera does a 360-degree spin around the girls twice, What’s Her Face doesn't stop spinning and stays that way until her death later on in the issue. The Brothers Chaps have admitted to leaving her spinning so they could get more use out of the animation, which apparently took a long time to make.
- Excited Show Title!: Teen Girl Squad Meets Limozeen!
- External Combustion: In Homestar Ruiner's Teen Girl Squad segment, if you use the car on What’s Her Face at the right time, it will reveal that her dad bought her a new car "at a guh'ment auction" that turns out to be rigged with a car bomb. "A SPLODE!"
- Extracurricular Enthusiast: So and So explains that the "Priggity Prizom" is the name of this year's prom, and adds, with a deranged look, "I was on every committee ever." This fits well with the preppy overachiever stereotype she personifies.
- Eyes Always Shut: Japanese Culture Greg's eyes tend to be closed, befitting his otaku personality. They briefly open whenever he randomly utters a Japanese word or name and assumes a Stinkoman-esque face.
- Face of the Band: Invoked in Issue 8.Cheerleader: I'm Kissyboots, and she plays bass.
- Family-Unfriendly Violence: Several deaths are shown as graphic as you can get in poorly drawn stick figures, like an old guy's remains being exposed as he is eaten by vultures in Issue 9, or the tenthiversary issue where What’s Her Face gets lathed in two.
- First-Name Basis: In Issue 11, So and So refers to her stepmom, Judith So-and-So-erson, as "Judith" in a very sneering tone.
- Force Feeding: In Issue 13, after Tompkins tries to convince his mother that he doesn't need a babysitter, she admonishes him that he can't even take care of his virtual pet. Cut to Tompkins' Game Boy, where a cartoonishly bloated blob (next to an indicator saying "Food: 600%") is begs Tompkins to stop feeding him. Tompkins just laughs and keeps pushing buttons.
- Foreign Culture Fetish: Japanese Culture Greg, who is exactly who you'd think he'd be.
- Formerly Fat: "Teeny Tiny Girl Squad" shows that Cheerleader used to be overweight when she was younger.
- Four-Girl Ensemble: Cheerleader is the pretty one, So and So is the smart one, What’s Her Face is the tomboy, and The Ugly One is the naïve one. The roles are blurred a bit, since What’s Her Face tends to have more common sense than So and So.
- The Friend Nobody Likes:
- What’s Her Face is explicitly called the "pity friend" and is the one the other three are most likely to ditch or relegate to least-desired roles.
- It's suggested that the others don't like Cheerleader, but they simply don't have the guts to stand up to her. In Issue 9, Cheerleader dies at the beginning of the strip, and the others are elated at being set free from her tyranny.
- Funny Background Event: Strong Bad likes to insert random events into the background when he gets bored, such as helicopters shooting birds, clouds eating birds or the sun turning into a buzzsaw.
- Fun T-Shirt: Cheerleader's dresses. Some examples include "Who ♥ed?" on the Valentines special and "(s)hallo (t)ween" on the Halloween special.
- Gag Censor: The words on Olympic Man's shirt in Issue 13 are blurred out, parodying the Clumsy Copyright Censorship used in many rap videos of the '90s and early 2000s.
- Garage Band: Brainkrieg, who play out of a garage in "Decomposing Pumpkins".
- Geek Physiques: Of the Gregs, Open Source Greg is fat while the other three are skinny.
- Geeky Turn-On: In Issue 9, What’s Her Face is overjoyed that she can date Sci-Fi Greg again after Cheerleader dies.
- Genki Guy: Cheerleader Brian is always smiling, waving his arms around, and excitedly shouting about "SPIRIT!". He seems genuinely caught off-guard when Cheerleader barks at him to "shut it off", too.
- Girlish Pigtails: Cheerleader, whose pigtails make her look innocent; though, she is far from that.
- Girls' Night Out Episode: Gender Flipped with the "4 Gregs" episode.
- Giver of Lame Names:
- Strong Bad, rather than use the names of Brittany's friends that were included in her email, he instead opted to give the girls their woefully generic names while writing the first issue.
- In Cave Girl Squad, you can have a member of the Squad attempt to name a cat "Miss Jumblepuddins". Then the cat's mother — a saber-toothed tiger — appears and eats the girl for giving her cub a lame name.
- Gold Digger: Tompkins' mom is a bizarrely literal example, being a robotic prospector who needs somebody to babysit her sons while she goes "prospecting for future ex-husbands".
- A Good Name for a Rock Band: Appears twice.
What’s Her Face: Uh, hi. I like music. And um... cloth.
- In Issue 8, when the girls are forming a band, So and So suggests "Smartly Pretty", but is shot down in favour of "Kissyboots".
- In Issue 12, when What’s Her Face tries to talk to some boys.
Boy 2: Did that dude just tell you she likes cloth?
Boy 1: "She likes cloth" — that's a good band name.
- The Greys: Thomas is one of these.
- Gross-Up Close-Up: "4 Gregs" features a gratuitous close-up of Sci-Fi Greg's mouth, full of crooked teeth.
- Gutted Like a Fish: Manolios Ugly One, The Ugly One's father, threatens to gut D n' D Greg like a sheep if he lays a hand on The Ugly One.Gutted Sheep: (standing nearby) It's not so bad.
- Halloween Episode: "Decomposing Pumpkins"
- He is Not My Boyfriend: After Cheerleader's death in Issue 9, What’s Her Face expresses joy over how she can date Sci-Fi Greg again now that Cheerleader's gone. However, come "4 Gregs"...What’s Her Face: (laughing) Those Gregs are such losers!(cut to the Gregs)Sci-Fi Greg: Hey! No way! What’s Her Face would totally come to my defense!(cut back to the girls)What’s Her Face: Eww! Don't put that! No I wouldn't!
- Helicopter Blender: In Teen Girl Squad Meets Limozeen, this happens to What’s Her Face after Perry kicks her out of the stadium and into the air.
- Her Code Name Was "Mary Sue": Creator Strong Bad inserts himself into several of the comics, most notably to make out with the beautified The Ugly One.
- Hidden Depths:
- D n' D Greg turns out to be very knowledgeable about football. The other Gregs are surprised by this, and he defends himself by saying "Fantasy football still counts as 'fantasy'!"
- An Easter Egg in the Strong Bad Email "death metal" shows that Cheerleader is a fan of Brainkrieg, much to the surprise of What’s Her Face.Cheerleader: I come for the wuggas, but stay for the jiggy juggas.
- High School: Practically a given in a show about teenage girls.
- High-School Dance: The Priggidy Prizom in Issue 14.
- Hold Up Your Score: In Issue 6, the Arrow'd Guy and two others hold up signs with scores on them as each of the girls jump into the lion's mouth.
- Hollywood Nerd:
- So and So is the most book-smart of the four girls, and is shown to prefer more intellectual pursuits from time to time.
- The 4 Gregs are all different stripes of nerd. Science Fiction Greg is a sci-fi fan, D&D Greg is a fantasy and tabletop games fan, Open Source Greg is a self-proclaimed computer expert, and Japanese Culture Greg is an Occidental Otaku.
- Hormone-Addled Teenager: All four girls qualify, but Cheerleader in particular is an example, perhaps to the point of parody. Her desperate attempts to get "several boys" almost always result in disaster.
- Human Pincushion: The Ugly One becomes this in Issue 1 after getting ARROW'D by the Arrow'd Guy.
- Hypocritical Humor: In Issue 3, Cheerleader tries on an elephant mask while at the mall and the other girls disprove. Cheerleader's response is to say that their opinions don't matter because they don't have boyfriends, despite the fact that she herself doesn't have one — and in fact recieves the least attention from boys throughout the whole series.
- I Fell for Hours: "When you fall in a bottomless pit, you die of starvation."
- I Just Like Saying the Word: In Issue 14.Cheerleader: Oh boy, girls! Boys!What’s Her Face: Uh, what about them?
- I Just Want to Be You: The Ugly One's title card description in Issue 6 is "Wants to be Cheerleader".
- I Lied: Inverted in Issue 15: Manolios Ugly One warns D n' D Greg not to lay a finger on his daughter or he will "gut [him] like sheep." A sheep, with its innards removed, appears to say, "It's not so bad!" In the end, Manolios makes good on his threat, after which D n' D Greg exclaims, "Sheep, you lied!"
- I Miss Mom: One of the Olda Boys in Issue 5. However, in this case it seems that she's alive and well; the guy is just on vacation.
- I Need to Go Iron My Dog:
- Cheerleader's excuse to get out of going to The Ugly One's sweet someteen birthday party is to claim the Olympics are that night.
- In the Decemberween Special, What’s Her Face refuses to jump into the lion's mouth because she's vegan.
- Inventing the Wheel: In Cave Girl Squad, So and So can invent the wheel and go on a car date with Ogg Oggerson to outer space. It Makes Just As Much Sense In Context.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: In Issue 12, Sci-Fi Greg's reaction to seeing What’s Her Face date the Wireless Wizard is to remark "At least she is in the arms of a worthy adversary."
- Infant Immortality: Averted in Issue 7 where Kid Cheerleader and Kid Tompkins die, but played straight in Issue 13 where Timkins manages to survive while Tompkins gets killed.
- Insult Backfire: In Issue 12, after Cheerleader shoots down her friends' suggestions for getting "several boys":Cheerleader: You three are adorable. Maybe I'll come visit you at the convent or library someday.
So and So: (triumphantly, leaping into the air) You'll find me in the reference section!
- Interspecies Romance: What’s Her Face showed interest in Thomas, a short alien inspired by the Grays, at least once. One of the officers in Issue 13 shows interest in Tompkins Robot Momerson.
- Is It Something You Eat?: In Issue 15, three of the girls start fighting over how much each of their prom dresses costed. Meanwhile, tomboyish What’s Her Face interrupts the argument to ask whether "this 'dress' [they] speak of" is a food.
- It Came from the Fridge: In Issue 14, What’s Her Face finds a slice of cake in her locker so old, it's mutated into a giant monster that eats her.
- It's All About Me: Cheerleader and her insatiable hunger for popularity.The Growlbacks are losin' by seventy three! (Points.) But I don't care 'cuz everyone is lookin' at me! (Doink.)
- Jive Turkey: All four teen girls, especially Cheerleader, tend to speak in the preppy kind of jive. Lampshaded in Issue 15 when What’s Her Face admits she's "a bit rusty with [her] white girl gangsta".
- Jumping the Shark: Invoked in the "tenthennial extravaganza":Cheerleader: It's our tenth issue-versary!!! Let's do a clip show!!
So and So: Let's have a wedding!!
The Ugly One: Let's have a baby!!!
What’s Her Face: Let's kill someone off!
Narrator Strong Bad: (beat) Okay!
(a "splat" sound is heard as we cut to Cheerleader having apparently been cut into segments and randomly re-assembled, So and So being crushed by a giant golf ball, The Ugly One being eaten by a carnivorous plant, and What’s Her Face with a lampshade over her head)''
- Kill 'em All: All four girls are usually dead by the end. On rare occasions, one or two will survive. On even rarer occasions (issues 2, 3, and 6), none of them die.Cheerleader: [singing the closing credits over the ending screen] It's over! It's over! And everybody died 'cept me!
Cheerleader: Aw, crap.
- Last-Second Word Swap: Shows up in Issue 7 while So and So and The Ugly One are playing a game.Brush your teeth, comb your hair, I saw Tompkins in his under— where're you going?
- L33t L1ng0: The girls talk in leetspeak on occasion, particularly in some of the older issues. Also, the page title of the Teen Girl Squad Menu is "T33n G1rl Squ4dx0rx!!11".
- Lighter and Softer: The other three girls attempt to take the group in this direction following Cheerleader's death in Issue 9. It doesn't work.
- Looks Like Cesare: At camp, What’s Her Face gets a sickly bunkmate who, in what is probably a parody of this trope, is literally a raccoon... person... thing.
- Lower-Deck Episode: "4 Gregs" focuses on the Gregs instead of the girls.
- Mad Libs Catch Phrase: The "Ow! My X!" and "[SOMETHING]'D!" Running Gags.
- Major Injury Underreaction: In Issue 1, What’s Her Face dies after getting punted by a dinosaur. Her final words? "Dag, yo."
- Makes Just as Much Sense in Context: Pretty much the whole series.
- Mondegreen: Towards the beginning of Teen Girl Squad Meets Limozeen, So and So remarks that she wants to sing back-up. However, the Limozeen bus driver only hears the "back-up" part and backs up the tour bus, crushing her.ROADIE MISCOMMUNICATION BREAKDOWN????!
- Meaningful Name: Each of the Gregs are named after what their nerdy obsession happens to be.
- Mind Screw: The ending of "4 Gregs." So basically, Strong Bad was drawing the Teen Girl Squad drawing the four Gregs drawing the girls drawing the Gregs drawing the girls drawing the Gregs drawing the girls drawing the Gregs drawing the girls drawing the Gregs!
- Mundane Made Awesome: In Issue 14, So and So takes her final exam by putting on a robot suit and fighting the test as if it were a giant monster.
- Name-Face Name: What’s Her Face. This trope is also fairly common in the main Homestar Runner universe as well.
- NameTron: Spoofed in Issue 15 in which So and So preps for final exams by turning into a robot named "Scantron".
- Negative Continuity: It doesn't matter how many of the main characters die violent deaths in one cartoon; they're always back for the next one.
- Nobody Loves the Bassist: Lampshaded in Issue 8 when the girls try to form a band.What’s Her Face: Can I not get stuck playing bass?The other girls: NO WAY!!
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: Issue 13 introduces a rapper named Peacey P, a parody of Snoop Dogg (with visual cues from Ludacris).
- No Inner Fourth Wall: Characters in the comic will sometimes comment on the events happening to them, like The Ugly One responding to getting "dangled off a hotel balcony'd" in Issue 13 with a disappointed "That's it?"
- Non-Indicative Name: Despite her name, whether Cheerleader actually is a cheerleader is inconsistent. In "4 Gregs", she explains that she's more a cheerleader in they way she dresses and treats other girls. However, in Issue 15, after being thrown into the air by Cheerleader Brian, she claims that she's "off-duty"; and in Homestar Ruiner's Teen Girl Squad segment, if you give her the megaphone at the right moment, she will actually lead a cheer.
- No Respect Guy: What’s Her Face is the only one with any sort of common sense whatsoever, being prone to sarcasm and the only one of the Squad who isn't a mindless follower of Cheerleader. However, the other girls only seem to put up with her out of pity and she's always the one they are likely to ignore or exclude from group activities. Other characters don't treat her too well, either.
- Occidental Otaku: Japanese Culture Greg, as the name suggests, is obsessed with Japanese culture to the point of peppering his sentences with Gratuitous Japanese while making an Animesque face.
- Oh, No... Not Again!: In Homestar Ruiner, giving The Ugly One the candy bar in either of the first two scenes causes a fish to jump up and eat it out of her hand. Her response: "Aw, Leonard! Not again!"
- 1 Million B.C.: Strong Badia the Free's Cave Girl Squad.
- One Steve Limit: Averted with the Gregs. There's Sci-Fi Greg, D n' D Greg, Open Source Greg and Japanese Culture Greg. In the 4 Gregs spinoff, D'n'D Greg also beats on a school mascot that turns out to be Regular Greg.
- Only Sane Man: What’s Her Face is probably the only one with any common sense. For example, she is the only one who refuses to jump into a lion's mouth for the secret Santa. She is also probably the only one interested in having a real boyfriend, as opposed to picking up boys quickly as is Cheerleader's style.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: So and So's real name is Kristen, and the other three might be named Virginia, Joy, and Jennifer, but beyond that, their real names aren't even mentioned outside of the original email, and they're usually treated as if their nicknames were their only names: "Yes, Mrs. So and So... erson."
- ...Or So I Heard: In Issue 8:The Ugly One: Worldwide starlets get much boys!
Cheerleader: Or so I have read.
- Ostrich Head Hiding: In Issue 5, The Ugly One burrows her head into the sand because she's too nervous to go up and talk to the Olda Boys.
- Out-of-Character Moment: While So and So and The Ugly One stayed relatively as they always were when Cheerleader died in Issue 9, What’s Her Face took advantage of not having to be the sensible one anymore and ate a heaping bowl of "Staple Sauce". This, unsurprisingly, killed her.
- Out of Focus: Tompkins was introduced for a few cartoons, but gradually stopped appearing. Issue 15 hangs a lampshade on this:Tompkins: Stupid 4 Gregs. There was a time where I would've been massacred as one of those girls' prom dates!
- Overprotective Dad: Manolios Ugly One. In Issue 15, he threatens D n' D Greg with "You lay one finger on my daughter, I gut you like sheep."
- Ow, My Body Part!: A frequent Running Gag. Examples include "Ow! My skin!", "Ow! My hopes of reaching first base!" and "Ow! My entire life!"
- Variants are used, too, such as the classic "My blood hurts."
- Perfectly Cromulent Word: The name of Peacey P's album, "Deliberance".
- Perky Goth: So and So adopts this persona when the girls form a band in Issue 8. "I'm going with that gloomy keyboardist look I keep hearing about!"
- Perpetual Frowner: What’s Her Face rarely smiles, and her default expression is an apathetic frown.
- Person as Verb: Often overlaps with the "—'d" Running Gag.STEP-MOMMED!
- Picture Day: In Issue 14, it's revealed that the school picture day was scheduled on the same day as Tape-a-Dead-Thing-to-Your-Face-Day.
- The Pig Pen: The Spinoff Babies issue of Teen Girl Squad has What’s Her Face as a direct parody of the original Pig Pen, as lampshaded in the commentary.
- The Ugly One is sometimes suggested to embody this trope in the main series. Her father seems to be an example as well, given his slovenly appearance and stained wifebeater.
- The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: Cheerleader doesn't actually lead cheers much. Whether she's actually a cheerleader is inconsistent. Lampshaded in "4 Gregs" when Cheerleader states that she's like a cheerleader in the way she dresses and treats other girls.
- Police Are Useless: "Uh, yes, ma'am. We got a report of us wanting to watch the Ola Toya fight. You mind if we investigate?"
- Popular Is Dumb: Played with. Cheerleader is arguably the most airheaded of the main cast (impressive, considering that everyone in this series is Too Dumb to Live). However, while she acts as a domineering Alpha Bitch to the other girls, she is nowhere near as popular as she thinks she is.
- Random Events Plot: The first few issues focus on random and absurd humor without a coherent plot structure.
- Rapid-Fire Comedy
- Rebus Bubble: Keeping in line with her Ditzy Genius characterization, So and So has one in the Decemberween special while deciding whether or not to jump into the lion's mouth."Let's see... Lion's mouth + Decemberween present ÷ peer pressure × height, equals... TRIPLE SALCHOW!"
- Relationship Sabotage: It is heavily implied that Cheerleader forced What’s Her Face to dump Sci-Fi Greg at one point. Once Cheerleader dies in Issue 9, What’s Her Face is elated that she can date him again.
- Repetitive Name: Brett Bretterson, So and So's imaginary boyfriend.
- For that matter, her last name is apparently So-and-So-erson.
- Rescue Romance: Quarterman saves The Ugly One from an upperclassman's prank and then asks her to accompany him to the end credits.
- Ribcage Stomach: They feed themselves to a lion in the Decemberween special, and proceed to exchange gifts inside of its ribcage. It Makes Just As Much Sense In Context.
- Robe and Wizard Hat: The Wireless Wizard, of course.Man, sometimes wizards are so awesome, it hurts.
- Running Gag: The series has quite a few of these, like Cheerleader getting the girls to shout "SO GOOD!" in unison, a flock of birds getting killed/attacked by a random background element, and gratuitous use of the suffix "-'d".
- Sadist Show: Not only are the main cast usually all dead at the end of each issue (or have some terrible misfortune befall on them), but even extra characters are not safe from such a fate as well. Strong Bad himself just seems to take delight in coming up with creative and hilarious ways to kill off the girls one-by-one.Strong Bad: Ah, Teen Girl Squad... Which one of you wants to get trampled by stampeding Venus flytraps today?
- Self-Deprecation: The official description of the "4 Gregs" cartoon calls it "the spin-off nobody was asking for".
- Serious Business: Vamlumtimes Day is serious times. Apparently, Cheerleader risks losing her "Mindy cred" if she doesn't get enough Valentine's cards from enough boys.
- Severely Specialized Store: In Issue 13, So and So gets a summer job at a place called Shirt Folding Store, which is located in a mall. We later get a glimpse of the rest of the mall, which contains other stores such as Jean Folding Store and Thong Folding Store.
- Shaped Like Itself: "Teen Girl Squad, the teenage girls between the ages of 13 and 19!"
- She Cleans Up Nicely:
- The Ugly One gets dolled up into "the Hotgly One" at her Sweet Someteenth in issue 10.Strong Bad: Woah! Did I draw that new hotness?
- And D n' D Greg looks awful good in a tux in issue 15.
- The Ugly One gets dolled up into "the Hotgly One" at her Sweet Someteenth in issue 10.
- Short-Distance Phone Call: Played with in Issue 12. Cheerleader starts texting the Class Prez while the two are standing right next to each other. The Wireless Wizard lampshades this immediately after he appears:Wireless Wizard: Texting from a few feet away? FOR SHAME!
- Shout-Out: So and So's Scantron armor in Issue 14 is based on Voltron.
- Shown Their Work: All of D n' D Greg's references to Dungeons & Dragons are accurate and well-researched. Other characters', not so much.
- Show Within a Show: The show is an amateur comic made (and acted out) by Strong Bad.
- Spear Counterpart: The Gregs to the Teen Girl Squad.
- Speaking Like Totally Teen: In Issue 11, Camp Counselor Shortshorts tries to win the approval of The Ugly One and What’s Her Face by showing he's hip and cool — and fails miserably.Camp Counselor Shortshorts: Okay, girls. I'm Camp Counselor Shortshorts. Now, before you ask, "Who's this square?", listen to this: SCHA-WING! NOT!!!! WHO LET THE DOGS OUT!!
The Ugly One: Buh—
What’s Her Face: —arf.
- Spell My Name with a "The": The Ugly One's first name is apparently "The" (her father's name is Manolios Ugly One)
- Spin-Off Babies: Issue 7 has Teen Girl Squad as toddlers — "Teeny Tiny Girl Squad".
- Staying Alive: The girls die ridiculous deaths each issue, but these deaths are never permanent.
- Stick Figure Animation
- Stupid Statement Dance Mix: An easter egg in Issue 5 remixes two lines said by two older boys at the beach with the Teen Girl Squad theme.Older Boy #1: I miss video games.Older Boy #2: I miss my mom.Older Boy #1: I miss video games.Older Boy #2: I-I-I miss my mom.
- Stylistic Suck: The girls are stick figures on a looseleaf backdrop. Strong Bad provides all the voices himself, so they all speak in falsetto.
- Summer Campy: Camp Firstbassawassa in Issue 11.
- Surreal Humor: A frequent source of humor in the comics, including bizarre sight gags and characters coming out of nowhere to kill or injure other characters.
- Taken for Granite: In Homestar Ruiner Teen Girl Squad, if Cheerleader is given the megaphone in Scene 3, Medusa will appear out of nowhere while Cheerleader is busy leading a cheer and turn her to stone.
- Talking to Himself: An in-universe example (as well as a real life one): Matt Chapman aside, Strong Bad voices all of the comics' characters.
- Tempting Fate: In Cave Girl Squad, if you give a girl the chisel, she'll say this:Uh, that's one sharp chisel! Cool. I'm sure nothing bad could happen to me with that.
- Terrible Artist: Strong Bad isn't exactly the best artist, as he's only capable of drawing stick figures.
- That's All, Folks!: It's over!
- Theme Tune Roll Call: Once per Episode."Cheerleader! So and So! What’s Her Face! The Ugly One!"
- The End: Most issues end with Strong Bad shouting "It's over!"
- There Was a Door: In Issue 13, Cheerleader, The Ugly One, and What’s Her Face bust through the wall of Tompkins's house to get inside.
- They Killed Kenny Again: Some number of the Teen Girl Squad almost always die by the end of almost every issue, the exceptions being Issues 2 and 3 and the Decemberween special. Lampshaded at the end of Issue 8 when the girls have all died except for Cheerleader:Cheerleader:
It's over! It's over!
Strong Bad says it's over!
It's over! It's over!
Everybody died 'cept me!!
- Title Drop: Done straight by Strong Bad at the start of every toon. Played with in Issue 9:So and So: You guys, I think this might be the start of a kinder, gentler squad of teen girls.
- Title Scream: TEEN GIRL SQUAAAAD! CHEERLEADER! SO AND SO! WHAT’S HER FACE! THE UGLY ONE!
- Threatening Shark: In Issue 8, What’s Her Face's bass turns into a shark. "My bass feels seaworthy." And then the shark proceeds to eat most of her and take her place in Kissyboots.
- Throw the Dog a Bone: Here and there, Strong Bad cuts one of the Teen Girl Squad a break. Examples include What’s Her Face managing to get a date on (as well as survive) "Vamlumtimes Day" and a few occasions of The Ugly One having things work out for her (such as accompanying the quarterback to the end credits while the guys who pranked her get their comeuppance). Although this sometimes is done in a darkly comedic manner, such as The Ugly One getting a photo to commemorate her awesome prom experience, with the remains of her friends around her.
- Totally 18: When Cheerleader and So and So are trying to impress the college boys in Issue 5, Cheerleader insists that she and So and So are in college. So and So, however, undermines this by simultaneously admitting to being in eighth grade. Cheerleader tries to backpedal by claiming that So and So is her younger sister by five years, but the boys don't buy it."I'M FIVE YEARS OLDER AND I'M IN COLLEGE!!"
- Totally Radical: Done deliberately in Issue 10 with the girls' title card descriptions. "Radacious Bodadical Raspberry Blue!"
- Unexplained Recovery: Most (if not all) of the girls are either dead or have sustained serious injury by the end of each issue. However, as noted above, they're always back for the next one, as if nothing had ever happened.
- Uncanny Valley: Invoked In-Universe. Japanese Culture Greg ends up getting killed by his prom date (a robotic girl designed to welcome American guests to a Japanese trade show) due to this. (Don't try to think too hard about how this works). Lampshaded by Sci-Fi Greg who notes that he'd be expected to like a robotic woman but she makes him want to puke.
- Unfortunate Names: Since her father's name is Manolios Ugly One, The Ugly One's first name seems to be The. (Granted, this is so common in the Homestar Runner universe that it has its own name amongst the fandom.)
- Unpopular Popular Character: Amongst fans and the creators of the show, What’s Her Face may be the most popular character. In universe, the opposite is true.
- Unusual Euphemism: Two instances:
- Issue 15 has Cheerleader say to her prom date, "Feel free to get slightly less appropriate with those hands, Cheerleader Brian."
- Tompkins's Catchphrase is also an example: "Aw, peas!"
- Unsound Effect: Some sound effects include things such as "Uncanny Valley'd" and "Sparrow'd".
- Vacation Episode: Issue 5, which also doubles as a Beach Episode as mentioned above.
- Vague Age: The Teen Girl Squad are described as "teenage girls between the ages of 13 and 19", with What’s Her Face being fifteen at the youngest, since she's had her license for a year.note
- The Ugly One's birthday is her "Sweet Someteenth".
- "We're in eighth grade!"
- "I'M FIVE YEARS OLDER AND IN COLLEGE!!!!!"
- Valentine's Day Episodes: Issue 12 has the girls trying to pick up "several boys" and get as many Valentine cards as they can. Hilarity Ensues.
- Verbal Tic: Japanese Culture Greg has a habit of inserting lots of Gratuitous Japanese into his sentences.
- Visual Pun: Scantron in Issue 14 — the Humongous Mecha identity So and So assumes while she takes her final exams — whose name is a pun on both Voltron and actual scantron sheets.
- Vocal Evolution: Strong Bad's falsetto is higher pitched (particularly with Cheerleader's voice) from Issue 6 onward. By Issue 9 or 10, the girls also develop subtle distinctions in their voices that reflect their personalities — Cheerleader's becomes higher pitched and peppier, So and So's stays more or less the same, What’s Her Face develops a Tomboyish Voice, and The Ugly One's grows more guttural.
- Voodoo Doll: Played for Laughs in Issue 12. Early in, The Ugly One is seen sticking a series of pins into a doll resembling the Arrow'd Guy. Later on, the Arrow'd Guy jumps up from behind Mrs. Embalmo with a The Ugly One voodoo doll that he's sticking pins into."BAD JUJU!!"
- Wave O Babies: The Trope Namer. What’s Her Face gets randomly hit by one in Issue 6.
- Waxing Lyrical: In Issue 14, Quarterman quotes "What I Have Been Looking For", a song from High School Musical, by telling The Ugly One, "All this time I was looking around, and you weren't right there in front of me. But I realized... when I was looking around... that you were right there in front of me... all this time...".The Ugly One: That makes so much sense!
- Weird Sun: The sun randomly turns into a buzzsaw in Issue 3 to kill some birds that were part of the background.
- Wicked Stepmother: Judith So-and-So-erson (So and So's stepmom), who looks suspiciously similar to the Arrowed Guy. In Issue 11, she makes So and So get a summer job at Shirt Folding Store.Cheerleader: Your stepmoms is teh fascist.
- The Wildcats: Parodied with the Fighting Growlbacks.
- Wingding Eyes: The crazy learner's permit girl from Issue 9 has scribbly spirals for eyes.
- With Friends Like These...: None of the girls actually seem to like each other much. Cheerleader is obnoxious, bossy and domineering to everyone, So and So is an aggressively bland doormat when she's not being a pushy overachiever, nobody likes What’s Her Face, and The Ugly One is insane and unhygienic.
- Worthy Opponent: Sci-Fi Greg and D n' D Greg consider the Wireless Wizard to be one for claiming What’s Her Face's heart because he's a combination of both Science Fiction and Fantasy.
- Written Sound Effect: Stuff like "ARROWED!" and "SHAKESPEARED!"
- You Killed My Father: An astronaut punches out So and So's overbearing manager at Shirt Folding Store because she killed his dog. Then, he just flies away.