Hijinks Ensue is a geek-oriented webcomic, written and drawn by Joel Watson. From its inception in 2007 to early 2012 it operated on a gag-a-day basis without any significant continuity, making fun of pop culture and geek issues from the eyes of the Author Avatar and his two best friends. (When making a short two or three installment comic, the artist would often add a comment condemning continuity in terms like "ahh, it burns!") Watson has subsequently admitted he didn't include continuity because he didn't view what he was doing as "real" fiction, and apologized.
In 2012 continuing storylines were introduced, and as of 2013, it has been rebooted with an entirely continuity-based format covering the highly fictionalized—or at least one would hope so—life of the artist, his family, and his friends, including several other notable webcartoonists.
The site also encompasses "Lo Fi Jinks," black and white gag oriented strips drawn in a simpler style, and "Faneurysm," usually single-panel comics with a pop culture joke.
Not to be confused with the trope Hilarity Ensues.
This webcomic provides examples of:
- Always Chaotic Evil: FOX executives.
- Alt Text: Starting with the September 2010 site redesign.
- The Alcoholic: Eli. He is very rarely shown sober.
- Arbitrary Skepticism: Parodied in this strip.
- Art Evolution: Most of it happens in the first dozen comics, but it appears ongoing.
- Bazaar of the Bizarre: District 9, as parodied in this strip. "Oooh! Spoiled pig face!" Also the multipart comic Under the Bridge Downtown about a local swap meet.
- The Bear: Josh is a textbook example. He's also into Bears himself
- Bait-and-Switch Comparison: Between spoiled hollandaise sauce and antifreeze.
- Bizarre Alien Biology: Apparently, FOX executives don't have human hearts.Executive: Imagine something like a hate-filled pineapple.
- Came Back Wrong: When Joel's hard drive died, and he used a few... unorthodox measures to revive it and recover the files on it, the whole ordeal was turned into a comic where the hard drive was anthromorphic, and reviving it turned it into an Empty Shell that drew gruesome images of murdering him.
- Cosplay: Josh's infamous Kratos costume, which spurs him to create a kickass Big Daddy/Little Sister combo suit. Joel had everything needed for the suit (including an industrial drill, an old-timey diving suit and a pink dress) except the thread in his garage.
- Filler: The various "photo comics" that Joel has begun posting whenever he goes on a trip somewhere.
- Catchphrase: "Shut up forever!" is used as a segue.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Satan appeared in one strip to chastise Pat Robertson for his comments on Haiti in the wake of the earthquake disaster. He does, however, cut the call to cow-tow to Rush Limbaugh
- Guest Strip
- Have You Told Anyone Else?: Provides the trope image.
- I'm a Humanitarian: Josh ate his own replacement arm he had been growing from pig DNA when he realized it was made of pork.
- It should be noted that he grew the arm by cutting off his original one and dusting the wound with bacon bits because he read a story about a man who grew a new limb using pig DNA.
- Hobos: The recurring character Boxcar Pete, who wears a monocle, talks like a pirate, and buys Josh's used iPhones.
- Life Embellished: Almost none of what goes on in the strip happened, but the characters are real people. Often in the strip's blog entries, Watson will tell how much is true, how much is false, and who it happened to.
- Nightmare Fetishist: Eli, having been essentially raised on a steady diet of horror media since childhood is now basically immune to any sort of horror movie. He used to call Freddy Krueger "Papa Frederico" when he was a child.
- Podcast: Weekly.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: Many strips are based on real-life events (and branch off heavily according to the Rule of Funny): Josh's Kratos costume going viral, the site's issues with their first host, Joel's hard drive dying, Joel's spine problems...
- Slice of Life
- Take That!: Network TV, especially FOX, the music industry, rich people who don't understand how the Internet works, Apple fanboys, etc...
- Talk Like a Pirate: Boxcar Pete.
- They Killed Kenny: Josh. There's a tag for "Josh dies". This was eventually dropped.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Josh really likes bacon.
- Unsound Effect: Frequently.