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Webcomic / Pixie Trix Comix

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Pixie Trix Comix is a sequel/spinoff Webcomic to Ménage à 3 (and to its previous spinoff, Sticky Dilly Buns), following on immediately from the final strip of that comic on the 11th of April 2019. (It originally even shared a web URL with its parent comic.) Similarly to the previous comics, it is written and drawn by Gisèle Lagacé (“Giz”) with input from Dave Lumsdon and T Campbell. The title and presentation suggest that it centers on a fictional Montreal comics shop named, yes, “Pixie Trix Comix” (also, in fact, the name of the publisher of these strips), which frequently appeared in the older stories. However, it turns out that the shop is branching out into comics publishing, and recruiting new people for this — perhaps a rather flagrant instance of Write What You Know. As three of the main characters soon move in together, what starts as a Work Com also turns into a Roommate Com.

Like the parent comic, this is constructed as a very traditional four-panel strip (the western equivalent of a Yonkoma); there are always four panels, or occasionally some double panels. Originally, they appeared online as a single row of four, but since a major Website redesign in early 2020, they have been posted in a 2x2 layout. (As the creators' print collections have always been printed with this 2x2 format, any double panels are always located in positions 1 and 2 or 3 and 4.) Also, the great majority of strips end with some kind of comedy punchline, despite the fact that there is a continuing story.

The first strip, which demonstrates the comic's willingness to feature both pre-existing and new characters, is here.

Pixie Trix Comix contains examples of:

  • Added Alliterative Appeal: Dream Aaron in this strip:
    Aaron: Walloping websnappers! The blonde book-buying babe with the boobs like bombs?!
  • Anywhere but Their Lips: Inverted when the lesbian and nervous Roxie, who is basically trying to work out if she has any sort of chance with Zadie and to make her interest clear, says goodnight to the other woman by giving her a quick kiss on the lips — which leaves Zadie startled and a bit clearer about things without making the situation too stressful.
  • Bathtub Scene: Aaron imagines three of the female characters into one of these in his comic script, to Ramona's annoyance, as shown here. He could point out that this does permit use of Censor Suds, though his imagination may not make too much use of those.
  • Bisexual Love Triangle: One danger of featuring in this comic’s setting is getting caught in a bisexual triangle. The clearest example is when the sexually confused Aaron is taken with both Julian and Nikki.
  • Bondage Is Bad: Although comics using this setting generally take an open-minded approach to kink, it’s noticeable that the only BDSM scene to date in Pixie Trix Comix features FiFi and GiGi, with the former Sleeping with the Boss and the latter simultaneously formulating devious schemes and being unfaithful to her husband on their wedding anniversary (though he might not mind, given that it’s this comic). Interestingly, GiGi is the one who’s tied up and so nominally submissive, though she’s exerting her usual dominant attitude.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: As a fairly broad comedy, this comic occasionally allows its characters a sociopathic attitude towards others’ discomfort for the sake of a laugh. Notably, while Sharon is The Sociopath full-time, the way that everyone else (except Aaron) tolerates her behavior sometimes tips them toward comedic sociopathy.
  • Cosplay: Inflicted on Aaron by Jung from the very first strip onward. Putting him in a miniskirt was just mean.
  • Crushing Handshake: Deployed by Zadie when Aaron pushes his luck, transforming a business handshake into a crush.
  • Dating Do-Si-Do: The web of relationships in the comic is more of a Love Dodecahedron, but occasionally things are more consecutive than concurrent, with people ending one relationship before they start another. Sometimes.
  • Disney Owns This Trope: As explained here:
    Tess: I mean... technically our names and likenesses are owned by WW3 Enterprises in perpetuity throughout the universe.
    Apparently, Aaron fails to think about this enough, and nobody else spots the potential problem, because GiGi subsequently weaponizes it.
  • Don't Explain the Joke: In this strip, Roxie accuses Maura of being with Lynn for career reasons, which Maura denies, saying she's not a spy. Lynn makes a Double Entendre out of it, which Maura explains to Roxie, to the latter's irritation.
    Lynn: I dunno, last night you were pretty deep under covers.
    Maura: [giggles] Oh, you! [whispering to Roxie] She's talking about our sex life.
    Roxie: I got it!
  • Double Standard: Discussed and played with in this strip. Aaron accuses Ramona of only objecting to his script's Bathtub Scene because it doesn't appeal to her taste for yaoi, with some justice — but as she points out, he's supposed to be writing superheroes, not yuri.
  • Even Nerds Have Standards: Both Jung and Ramona — who many people would say were hardcore geeks, if maybe only borderline nerdy — are quite willing to call out and embarrass Aaron for, essentially, nerdy behavior. Admittedly, Aaron can be annoying and crass by any standards, making him something of an Asshole Victim at those moments.
  • Everybody Has Lots of Sex: While the level of merry-go-round comedy promiscuity may not quite match that in Ménage à 3, there's no denying that every character in the comic is quite sexually active. Even Aaron, a hopeless Geek who starts the comic as a virgin, ends up in bed with various partners. He sometimes complains of being in dry spells, but they don't last that long by real-world standards.
  • Everyone Is Related: Well, not everyone, perhaps, but aside from any peripheral character relationships left over from previous comics, it turns out that the Martell siblings and Kiley from Mà3 are cousins, with Sharon also being Kiley's roommate.
  • Faceless Masses: The audiences at wrestling shows are sometimes depicted as dark blobs.
  • Fake-Out Make-Out: Zadie demonstrates this trope with Aaron when improvising some kind of Operation: Jealousy when she sees her just-dumped ex Raymond with another woman.
  • Family Business: GiGi is in the process of inheriting the wrestling promotion from her father, and is very keen to keep it in the family.
  • Faux Yay: Tracy suggests a classic display of "club lesbianism" to Tess in this strip. Tess is initially bemused, especially because she rather enjoys the kiss (on the comic's universe's usual principle that almost Everyone Is Bi), but then contemplates extending the deception to restore her relationship with Maura, who's recently been heavily distracted by her new lesbian relationship.
  • Flashback: The comic uses occasional flashbacks, rarely longer than a panel or two and sometimes verging on being Flashback Cuts, to fill out character backstories. Its usual standard Flashback Effect is a scalloped "thought bubble" border around the past-time scenes. One slightly more substantial series of flashback panels occurs in the sequence starting here in which Marie and Gwynn and Dante explain how they first met.
  • Flat "What": Nikki basically claims the option of having sex with Felix based on his distracted responses to her pushiness. When he snaps back to paying attention to her, it's with a flat "I'm sorry, what".
  • Freudian Slip:
    • When Julian offers to help Aaron move in to Zadie's place, Zadie, who is attracted to Julian, jumps at the chance to see more of him:
      Zadie: Ooh, that'd be nice to view… Of you. Nice of you.
    • When Julian rushes out of the backroom shirtless, showing off his muscular physique:
      Ramona: H-Herculean—I mean Julian! What's going on?
  • Friends with Benefits: The comic features a number of relationships that look more like friendships-with-benefits than deep romances; examples would include Aaron's fling with Nikki and any sexual relationship involving Sharon that ascends to the level even of friendship. However, a specific example might be Aaron's relationship with Tess. To begin with, she clearly finds him irritating much of the time, but he makes himself useful, and she starts to use him as a source of ideas and amusing company. Then, faced with a possible committed relationship with Dora, she decides that she wants a last heterosexual fling, and Aaron is nearby...
  • Funny Background Event: Kiley can be seen in the background of one of Sharon's Instagram selfies, staring at Sharon's much larger breasts while clutching her own with a very sad expression on her face.
  • Getting the Boot: Aaron's fate, when he's spectacularly annoying to Ramona.
  • The Glomp: Sharon takes a skimpy excuse to perform a very aggressive glomp on Felix here.
  • Half-Identical Twins: Aaron and Sharon are obviously fraternal twins, but have a strong resemblance, though Aaron is a gawky teen guy (but by no means ugly — and he gets a little more appealing after he starts working out), while Sharon is Ms. Fanservice. The trope is actually implicitly invoked before Sharon meets the rest of the cast when Felix and Tracy learn that Aaron has a twin sister and admit to each other that they're curious what Aaron would look like with boobs. (They really should know better; they themselves are siblings, though not twins, and have no particular resemblance — but the comic is playing with the idea of Always Identical Twins there.) Later, Tracy tells Aaron that he shouldn't be so quick to deny that Sharon is hot, as he looks like her (he suffers from a blind spot on the subject due to raging Sibling Rivalry), and he (not entirely illogically) takes this as a sign that Tracy thinks he is hot.
  • Hand-or-Object Underwear:
  • Holding Hands: A trope used to nicely understated effect in the strip where Zadie goes to tell Roxie that she's not romantically interested in her; when Roxie gently and subtly takes her hand for a moment, it helps cause Zadie to reconsider the decision on the spot.
  • Hollywood Law: GiGi wants a divorce from her unfaithful husband, but wants to be 100% sure that he won't get any part of her family's business in the settlement. Hence, she and FiFi have engineered a Honey Trap whereby FiFi seduces him and gets clear and unambiguous evidence of the fact. All classic sex comedy stuff — except that Canada has no-fault divorce these days, and pinning the blame on him shouldn't really change much about the outcome. (Adultery is one possible basis for a divorce, but it would mostly serve merely to speed up the process.) It's possible that the couple have a prenup that would make this more effective, though it's not entirely certain that would be enforceable; alternatively, the women may have some kind of blackmail scheme in mind, but that would depend on other factors to work. Really, this is just one of the comic's occasional old-school types of joke, going back to periods when the law was different.
  • Idea Bulb: Tess is struck by an idea while talking to Tina and gets a light bulb over her head.
  • Idealized Sex: First-time anal sex between Julian and Aaron is shown as vigorous, repeated, and successful, despite Aaron’s inexperience and the lack of any signs of use of lubrication. Some readers were quick to point out that this would really be uncomfortable, and in fact painful, for him.
  • I'll Be in My Bunk: Yaoi fan Ramona reacts to the idea of Julian and Aaron "bro'in out" by heading off to the restroom.
  • Incompatible Orientation: Actually, the incompatibility often collapses rapidly in a world where (almost) Everyone Is Bi. Okay, Zadie and Sharon are both attracted to Julian who, unbeknownst to them, is definitely gay. But when Roxie is attracted to Zadie, who initially identifies as completely straight, and is about to tell Roxie this when Roxie takes her hand and she suddenly realizes she may not be so straight after all. Likewise, Julian is attracted to Aaron, who has sometimes seemed downright homophobic, but after seeing Julian naked he has started to have some... very strange fantasies indicating he finds Julian attractive as well, although he's still massively in denial about it.
  • Lingerie Scene:
    • When modelling for Felix, the surprisingly modest Sharon sticks to a Black Bra and Panties arrangement, while Tracy strips to a Thong of Shielding.
    • When Zadie takes Roxie shopping for underwear, each of them is shown trying on a set (Zadie's being especially small).
  • Local Hangout: The shop tended to serve this purpose to some extent for some of the cast in its previous appearances. Making it more of the focus of a comic sometimes brings this function even more to the fore, though a lot of stories actually wander off elsewhere.
  • The Loins Sleep Tonight: After spending a whole night having sex with Tess, Aaron is unable to get it up with Nikki.
  • Love Dodecahedron: Typically for a comic in this setting, the network of romantic interests rapidly becomes complicated, though it's more about lust than love. Aaron is openly attracted to Zadie (or rather to virtually any woman, but he has an optimistic view of his chances with her), who fends him off while being attracted to Julian, Felix, and it turns out also Roxie (who reciprocates), while Julian is attracted to Aaron, who doesn't initially notice while being hugely in denial about the fact that he returns the feeling. Meanwhile, Felix is attracted to both Julian and Ramona but settles for Sharon at least once (while fantasizing about Ramona), and Sharon herself is also attracted to Julian. Then Zadie finds herself attracted to Gwynn and Dante, while hiding her relationship with Roxie from them for various reasons, which puts her in competition with Marie... The fact that Ramona and Jung are basically happily monogamous (although she certainly notices hot guys) ends up looking quite anomalous.
  • Naked First Impression: When Aaron first meets Tracy, she's getting changed after modelling for Felix — and wandering around his apartment at the same time. Aaron would only have caught a glimpse, though, except that Tracy, on hearing that he is (or claims to be) a writer, immediately assumes that, as a "creative", he'll be cool about her lack of modesty, which is overestimating Aaron.
  • One Degree of Separation: This trope is not fully active, as Zadie for one didn't know any of the rest of the cast before her first appearance, and it's perfectly plausible that, for example, Felix was pointed toward the new company by Gary (from Ménage à 3), who is friends with Jung and who is also working as an artist at the games company where Felix's sister Tracy (also of Ménage à 3) works. However, it subsequently turns out that Julian was at school with, and even in the same class as, Aaron — a completely arbitrary, if minor, Contrived Coincidence, especially given that the comics are set in and around Montreal, a fair-sized city.
  • Open Mouth, Insert Foot: Maura manages an unforced display of embarrassing unintentionally risqué blather in the (marginally NSFW) October 1st 2019 strip.
  • Playing Cyrano: When Tess finds herself going on her first date with another woman, she doesn’t have a clue about how to dress or behave, so for some reason she consults the geeky and overconfident Aaron. He actually provides some quite good advice on dress, but then they get distracted and he doesn’t have time to suggest anything about behavior. So he ends up trying to play Cyrano by text message.
  • Rapid-Fire Interrupting: In order to preserve Aaron’s ignorance of Julian’s sexual orientation, the comic has him inflicting this trope in these two strips.
    Julian: I'm actually—
    Aaron: Shy? Aw, dude! I shoulda guessed, you were always shy!
    Julian: No, Aaron, I'm g—
    Aaron: Girl repellent? Well, stick with me, man. I'll teach you all my tricks!
    Julian: No, Aaron, I'm hom—
    Aaron: Homely? C'mon, man, now you're really being too modest!
  • Roommate Com:
    • Both Aaron and Julian move into Zadie's apartment to split the rent, qualifying the comic for this trope. Well, none of them are in a band, but it's otherwise close enough.
    • Likewise, Sharon, Kiley and Nikki end up sharing an apartment.
  • Sex Comedy: While the plots maybe revolve round sex a bit less than those of the parent comic, a lot of the characters have considerable interests in the subject, and are often trying (successfully or otherwise) to get each other into bed.
  • Shapes of Disappearance: When Gwynn learns that Zadie's girlfriend is Roxie, the next panel has Zadie suddenly gone, a dotted outline of her left in her place.
  • Sibling Rivalry: Aaron and Sharon aren’t actually competing for much, but still exist in a state of permanent mutual hostility. The problem is that Aaron is an annoying geek while Sharon is sociopathically selfish, so they really don’t have much basis for a good relationship.
  • Speech Bubbles: When Zadie is introduced to Marie and is jealous over her closeness with Dante and Gwynn, there are icicles hanging from her speech bubble when she says, "Charmed."
  • Speech-Bubble Censoring: In a comic with a lot of Sex Comedy but also a need to avoid offending respectable advertisers, speech bubble censorship can be a useful option. A particularly egregious example occurs in the August 25th, 2020 strip, where Julian’s speech bubble proves just large enough to preserve his modesty for readers.
  • Spit Take: This standard comedy trope is demonstrated here and here by Aaron.
  • Stupid Sexy Flanders: Julian's effect on Aaron when the latter sees him naked is actually a first clue that Aaron isn't as entirely straight as he thinks.
  • Tempting Fate: Roxie is reluctant to be seen dancing. Zadie reassures her, only for Roxie's fears to immediately be proven right.
    Roxie: I… guess you're right. It's not like I know anyone in this b—
  • Their First Time: First-time sex between Julian and the virgin (and previously not-consciously-bisexual) Aaron fits the classic pattern, being spontaneous to the point of rashness and yet apparently very satisfying for both parties. Given the lack of apparent use of lubrication, this veers well into Idealized Sex territory.
  • Unsound Effect: Used when Aaron gets the BOOT from Ramona.
  • Very Special Episode: See this strip, in which Sharon is schooled concerning the subject of non-consensual surgery for intersex people (a subject which is personal for the writer). Sharon, who has previously been depicted as virtually The Sociopath, is appropriately shocked and outraged, suddenly developing the capacity for empathy.
  • Work Com: Any focus on the shop and its publishing arm and the people who work for them puts the comic into this category.
  • Wrong-Name Outburst: Axl suffers a classic "during sex" case (in flashback) here, explaining why Nikki has just broken up with him.
  • You Can Leave Your Hat On: Nikki performs a striptease for Aaron when he fails to perform after she offers him a quickie. She is puzzled when it doesn't work (reasonably enough — she's a good-looking woman). The problem is that Aaron has neglected to tell her that he's just come away from an eight hour sexual marathon with Tess, and whether or not he wants to admit it, he's completely spent.
  • Your Makeup Is Running: Zadie gets a bad case of running mascara during her tearful confession scene here.