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Webcomic / Jailbreak

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You wake up locked in a deserted jail cell, completely alone. There is nothing at all in your cell, useful or otherwise.

Jailbreak is the first webcomic under Andrew Hussie's Troperiffic MS Paint Adventures, originating in September 2006 as a humble Interactive Comic game run by Hussie and played by friends of his on an early precursor to the current MSPA forums. One of the rules of the game was that Hussie had to pick the very first suggested command for each move, no matter how unfunny or preposterous. It stars an otherwise nondescript man trying to escape a strangely built jail, which isn't rife with pumpkins.

It was left unfinished for years with Hussie stating he didn't intend to continue it, but he capped off with an ending in September 2011 during the long Homestuck pre-end-of-act-5 hiatus. Compared to its successors, it doesn't make any pretense of having a coherent world or story - it exclusively exists for and is fueled by Rule of Funny. It was something of an early prototype for the likes of Problem Sleuth, and it is the origin of many of the running mythology gags that MSPA is so famous for.


Just for the sake of posterity, the original forum threads can be found here, here, here, here and here.

A fan album was made by members of the Homestuck music team.

This comic provides examples of:

  • Anticlimax: The game ends with the player controlling the pony and commanding it to take a nap.
  • Butt-Monkey: The guy in the lower room. He is repeatedly urinated on, vomited on, knocked unconscious, and has numerous ladder-based inventions destroyed.
  • Cut Short: Jailbreak was unfinished until September 2011, where the ending was written after at least a five-year hiatus. That's got to be some kind of a record.
  • Downer Ending: Averted thanks to a quick press of the Reset Button.
  • Driven to Suicide: The stump has some sort of properties that immediately drive whoever is near it to suicide, apparently.
  • Expressive Mask: Averted; the Pumpkin Helmet does not change shape to match the face of the character unless it is physically twisted from its frowny face to its smiley face. At one point it gets stuck halfway between the two.
  • Advertisement:
  • Featureless Protagonist: Other than the fact that he is male (and perhaps androsexual), the main character has absolutely no distinguishing features whatsoever.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: For no reason at all, elves feature in the story.
  • Fully Absorbed Finale: The story of Jailbreak takes place in the Problem Sleuth universe, which incidentally explains some of the aspects of what happened in the story.
  • Gorn: Lovingly rendered in pixely monochrome, and incredibly messy at its best. For example, the attempt to use a prison guard as battering ram or the usage of intestines as rope.
  • Interactive Comic
  • Magick: More like Majyyks.
  • Makes Just as Much Sense in Context
  • Major Injury Underreaction: The main character gets a harpoon in his stomach and manages to get all the way out to the woods and near the suicide stump before finally dying of blood loss. He is perfectly cognizant of his actions and is even able to move about and do quite a number of things without behaving as though he is in pain.
  • Minimalist Cast: There's only 10 characters in the story, major or otherwise (the 3 prisoners, the 3 children, the 2 elves, the guard, and the pony). While this makes sense considering it's a smaller story, it can be a bit jarring compared to Problem Sleuth's and especially Homestuck's Loads and Loads of Characters.
  • No Ending: The elves try to make the pony kill the prisoner and the children he kidnapped but instead it just climbs into their bed and falls alseep. The end.
  • No Name Given: Just about all of the main characters. The MSPA wiki even refers to the three before the reset as "The First Guy", "The Other Guy" (the one who built Logorg), and "The Drill Guy".
  • Only Six Faces: Only one face, actually. There is very little to tell the characters apart, which might be part of the reason why they make their pumpkin armor later on in the story.
  • Painting the Medium: Like the comic it was based on, the soundtrack refuses to acknowledge its own existence despite clearly being visible by not allowing listeners to purchase the tracks. Except for three tracks, but they cost $999.99, $717.17, and $413 respectively anyway to discourage purchase.
    >Purchase entire album and see what happens.
    The album can't exist!
    >Wait, what?
    You ass, Jailbreak never had a soundtrack! You're messing with the balance of reality itself, here.
  • Powered Armor: Minus the power part. One of the two guys builds a robot out of ladder pieces called Logorg, which he later enters.
    • A bit later, the main character and the one who builds the robot get a suit made of pumpkins and a pumpkin helmet respectively.
  • Random Events Plot
  • Reset Button: here.
  • Retcon: Technically, despite the ending coming years after Hussie started writing Problem Sleuth, elves debut here.
  • Rule of Funny: Undeniably its sole motivation.
  • Running Gag: Pumpkins, which may or may not be actually there.
  • Shout-Out to Shakespeare: Attempted by a character, but sadly he doesn't know any lines.
  • This Is a Drill: Drillgorg is rebuilt with a drill in place of one hand.
  • Toilet Humor
  • Would Hurt a Child: Subverted. The main character takes three children hostages in order to get the elves to let him inside their bungalow, but the gun he is using to threaten them has no bullets.
  • You Can't Get Ye Flask: What pumpkin?
  • You Wake Up in a Room: A textbook example.

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