"You're another year older, another year wiser"
But I still go to school to get an education
I treat each and every day like a mini-vacation!
"All Grown Up", I really wanna shout it out!
"All Grown Up", I want the world to know!
"All Grown Up", I really wanna shout it out!
All Grown Up with you!
All Grown Up with... you...
All Grown Up! (2003-2008) is a Spin-Off from the popular Nickelodeon cartoon Rugrats. It follows the adventures of Tommy and friends in their junior high school, with the timeline taking place about 9 years after the original series. The crew are now in their preteens.
It essentially takes the basic personalities of the characters and transplants them into a world with less fantastical adventures and more into typical teen comedy fare. Tommy is an assertive budding filmmaker but is slightly lower on the social totem pole, Chuckie is neurotic and awkward, Phil is into model building and Lil wants to be more feminine (both still find joy eating spaghetti with their hands), Dil is a bizarrely street smart Cloudcuckoolander and Angelica is trying to dissociate herself from them to fit in with the popular kids.
The series got its start as "All Growed Up", an hour-length special episode of the original series made to commemorate the show's 10th anniversary in 2001. While this special is thought to be a Poorly-Disguised Pilot, it actually wasn't initially intended as such, with positive fan reception being what convinced Nickelodeon to greenlight a full series based on the idea.
Compare Quack Pack for a similar update on a classic kids' cartoon show.
All Grown Up! contains examples of:
- The Ace:
- Tommy Pickles. Averted in some episodes as he was shown to be the worse cowboy and has a fear of water.
- Kimi too. At times, when compared to their toddler personalities, she seems more of an Ace than Tommy.
- Suzie's mother Lucy has this carried over from Rugrats where not only is she still a successful doctor, talented artist and chef, she's revealed to have been a successful blues singer at age 18.
- Adults Are Useless: Charmingly averted. This time around, the kids' parents actually help out their children when they have problems and take the necessary action whenever they get in trouble or feel upset.
- Affectionate Nickname: Tommy, Chuckie and Dil call themselves by 'T', 'C' and 'D' at times.
- Alien Autopsy: "Bad Blood" has Dil steal a tape of what is supposed to be an alien autopsy, planning to play at a viewing party he is hosting, but the tape gets destroyed before anything is shown and they have to film a fake one.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys:
- Lil with anyone who shows some rebellion in them. "Chuckie, I've never seen you act like this! ...It's kind of attractive." Lil also seemed attracted to Dil for a moment when he admitted to stealing the alien autopsy tape he was supposed to deliver, saying he was "like a criminal".
- Kimi and Z appear to have this kind of attraction. But it's turned into a subversion as, while Z resembles the typical 'bad boy,' he's a pretty nice and likeable guy who's quiet with his own sense of style.
- Alpha Bitch: Savannah, as opposed to Angelica the Lovable Alpha Bitch. Savannah's basically Angelica with no redeeming qualities.
- Art Evolution:
- The animation and coloring changes between seasons 1 and 2. Many of the characters were re-designed as a result.
- During the first season, the coloring and backgrounds were flat like in Rugrats. But starting with "Interview With a Campfire", the characters were given shading and the backgrounds are more realistic.
- Artistic Age: The kids are middle schoolers but act, are treated like, and even resemble high schoolers. Dil seems like an elementary or early middle schooler, though.
- Artistic License – Law: In "Oh Brother, Can You Spare the Time", Dil appears on a Point-and-Laugh Show called 'What's Your Tragedy', and Tommy crashes the interview to talk to Dil on the air. Minors can't appear on television without parental consent, and no executive would allow it out of fear of an easy lawsuit.
- Bittersweet Ending: "All Broke Up" has one with heavy emphasis on bitter. It ends with Rachel breaking up with Tommy and most of his friends angry at him for not telling him he wasn't really hurt about Rachel moving even though they didn't listen to his statements about it the first time. That being said, Chuckie at least has realized his mistake and stays over at Tommy's to give him comfort in spite of him being nigh-inconsolable.
- Break the Haughty: Angelica gets this in "Lucky 13" when Savannah holds her own party on the same day as Angelica's 13th birthday party just so that no one would come. Interestingly enough, while these actions can be seen as Laser-Guided Karma for Angelica refusing to invite Tommy and his friends and being in-your-face about becoming a teenager, the episode is actually one of those occasions where it isn't hard to sympathize with Angelica.
- Break the Cutie: "Susie Sings the Blues" has Susie Carmichael get hit with this when she's so confident of launching a singing career that she gets conned out of a thousand dollars. She's devastated when she realizes she's been had.
- Brick Joke: Happens in "Bad Blood". Phil reacts to seeing Boris and Lou with their shirts off by screaming "Old man boobs", which is later hollered by Spinesnapper when Lou and Boris scare him off by lifting their shirts.
- Calvinball: Mountain Man!Phil: "Here's a new rule: Let's stop changing the rules before my head explodes!"Lil: "Can't! Rule 24-J says: Rules always change, and if players try to overrule that rule ..."Everyone: "They'll be overruled!"
- Candy Striper: In Season 2, Episode 4, "Miss Nose it All", Susie and Angelica both volunteer at a hospital and wear Candy Striper outfits. There's a twist on the trope as it's usually played, though: the red stripes on their uniforms are a reward they earn for doing a good job. Susie, who truly cares about the work they're doing, already has an outfit full of stripes and resembles the classic Candy Striper. Angelica, who is only there because her mother forced her to, has a white outfit with only a single red stripe.Nurse: Today's duties include delivering meals,
Angelica: Yeah yeah!
Nurse: —collecting bedpans,
Angelica: Let's go, wrap it up!
Nurse: —and most importantly, interacting compassionately with patients!
Angelica: Meals, compassion, bedpans, got it!
- Christmas Episode: "The Finster Who Stole Christmas."
- Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Some of the characters from the original series, such as Pepper, who one of Spike and Fifi's puppies, is not seen or mentioned. Only her brother, Spiffy is seen.
- Clark Kenting: Chuckie's alias Chongo from "Chuckie's in Love" is just him wearing different clothes, sunglasses, an ushanka, and his hair worn in a ponytail.
- Cloudcuckoolander: Dil. Believes the world is a tetrahedron, dearly hopes to learn to speak with cetaceans, junior UFOlogist, and prefers walking backwards (not just for fun; he thinks it's the clearly superior mode of locomotion). The episode "Truth or Consequences" reveals that he was literally dropped on his head when he was little by Phil and Lil (though it's left ambiguous whether or not that's the cause; Didi seems to think it just comes from Stu's side of the family). In "Oh Bro, Where Art Thou?", Dil met a circus family that was even crazier than him.
- Comic Trio:
- The Leader: Angelica.
- Only Sane Man: Susie.
- The Fool: Harold.
- They also happen to be a Token Trio with Two Girls and a Guy .
- Compressed Hair: One episode shows that Kimi's hair goes right down to her waist when it's freed from her Odango buns.
- Continuity Cavalcade: The episode "Curse of Reptar" makes several callbacks to the original series when the gang reminisce on the good times they had with Reptar. They mention that the first movie they saw involved Reptar (referring to the original series episode "At the Movies") and that the first ice show they went to was about Reptar (referencing the original series episode "Reptar on Ice"). Chuckie also brings up that if they hadn't gone to Reptarland, his father wouldn't have married Kira and he wouldn't have had Kimi as his sister, which calls back to the second movie.
- Continuity Nod:
Susie: "I almost tipped a cow... once..."
- Many references to the original series appear, with the obvious (entire episodes revolving around finding Reptar or Cynthia), to the more subtle (Tommy still keeps a toy screwdriver in his pants, albeit being more sensible to put it on a keychain in his pocket).
- In the "All Growed Up" episode that led to the conception of this spinoff, Samantha accuses Angelica of lying about her claim of having been to Paris, which calls back to the movie Rugrats in Paris.
- Chuckie mentions that he used to have an imaginary friend when he was younger in "Izzy or Isn't He?", which is a reference to the original series' episode "My Friend Barney".
- "Susie Goes Bad Lite" at one point calls back to "Dude, Where's My Horse," another episode where Susie pledged to do something bad and failed epically.
- In "What's Love Got to Do With It?", Chuckie chants "I'm a big brave dog" when he overcomes his fear of showering with the other boys. The original series also had Chuckie chant "I'm a big brave dog" on some of the occasions where he faced his fears.
- In the "All Growed Up" special, Angelica taunts the twins about the time they dropped Dil on his head. "Truth or Consequences" has Tommy capturing them saying that on film.
- Cordon Bleugh Chef:
- The school chef Pepe, who often makes unusual food combinations such as fish and marmalade tacos. Angelica once tried to manipulate him into cooking normal food in "Chuckie's In Love", but the food ends up making everyone sick because Pepe mistakenly put soap in it.
- Inverted with Phil, whose food is perfectly fine when he starts cooking, but people soon discover he doesn't bother to wash his hands while making it.
- Corpsing: In-universe example. While watching Tommy filming his home slasher movie, Lil bursts out laughing when Dil attacks her.
- Cowardly Lion: Chuckie, although he tried to break his image once.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Chuckie, when it comes to obscure skills and talents necessary to get his friends out of unusual, dire situations. To his dismay, none of these skills would be useful at any other time.
- The Cuckoolander Was Right: The end of "Tommy Foolery" has Dil right about aliens trying to contact him.
- Cultural Personality Makeover: Kimi despite knowing she was Japanese her entire life, really only has it click for her while working on a family tree. She begins to wear kimonos and decorates her bedroom with Japanese furniture and decorations. She changes her mind after seeing her stepbrother Chuckie is upset by her excluding him from her background.
- Darker and Edgier:
- The Christmas episode "The Finster Who Stole Christmas" has a darker tone then the rest of the series, with multiple references to God (even Lil referring to him), sins, and stealing.
- The two-part episode "Interview with a Campfire" had the characters investigate a legendary curse involving the disappearance of some 19th century settlers. Never Say "Die" is completely averted and Bean is revealed to be the ghost of one of the settlers in a rather disturbing manner.
- Dark Is Not Evil: 'Z'. He is a dark, badass, punk, volunteer, helping to raise money for inner city schools.
- Dastardly Whiplash: Madtooth the Magician from "Super Hero Worship".
- Defrosting Ice Queen: Susie lampshades this to Angelica, "It's hard to believe you're much nicer now than you used to be".
- Delinquent Hair: Kimi giving herself a pink streak is what makes Chuckie think she's seriously going bad.
- Demoted to Extra: Kira only appears in eight episodes of the series. Her first appearance is a non-speaking cameo in one of Tommy's home movies.
- Didn't Think This Through:
- What in the world made you think throwing a bowling ball through your roof was a good idea, Tommy?
- Drew and Stu basically say this to each other when they realise that the car they threw off of a cliff originally belonged to Elvis.
- Does Not Like Shoes: In "Oh Bro, Where Art Thou?", we're introduced to a family of French-Canadian contortionists. The children Jean and Pilar, always go barefoot even when they are not performing and are in their regular clothes. Sometimes they even eat and pick stuff up with their feet, even setting the table for supper! This latter trait is used to further emphasize that they are even bigger CloudCuckooLanders than Dil is (to the point that Dil himself became annoyed with them). In contrast their parents, Luca and Joe, wear shoes when not performing.
- "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: Cree Summer, voice of Susie, sings the opening theme.
- Early-Installment Weirdness:
- In the Rugrats episode "All Growed Up" Drew looks just like how he did in the original show, as does Charlotte. Charlotte has plastic surgery in the actual show so she has a permanent smile, and Drew looks more like Lou Pickles. Betty and Chaz are likewise redesigned in the series.
- The pilot treats Susie as if she isn't one of the gang or at least doesn't hang with them that often - facilitating a plot point where they try to sneak around her while she's babysitting. In the series proper, she and Kimi are in fact best friends. She's also shown with short hair as opposed to the series' more familiar look where she wears it in braids and a bandana.
- The pilot is also set ten years after the parent series, while All Grown Up itself is only nine years on. Tommy is eleven in the pilot, but only ten in the main series.
- Grandpa Lou is the driver for the school bus. In the series itself, the episode that gives him A Day in the Limelight implies that Tommy's class don't know him.
- Angelica is trying to suck up to a Lovable Alpha Bitch called Samantha (a white girl), who reveals her Hidden Depths and is teased as a possible love interest for Chuckie. In the main series, Angelica is instead sucking up to an Alpha Bitch called Savannah (who's completely unsympathetic) and Chuckie's more popular love interest is a Latina girl called Nicole.
- Within the series itself, the second episode teases a different girl as Chuckie's love interest; Mossy Miserez, who doesn't appear again, and Nicole is introduced a couple of episodes later.
- In the pilot special and a few episodes of season one, Dil doesn't wear his sherpa hat, which would later become a a staple in all his outfits.
- Everyone Has Standards: Demonstrated by the gang in "Lucky 13". Savannah the Alpha Bitch deliberately schedules a party on the same day as Angelica's birthday celebration For the Evulz. The rest of the group are appalled and decide that even Angelica didn't deserve that.
- Fake Nationality: In-universe: Chuckie pretends to be a foreign exchange student from Latvia to impress Nicole, coupled with As Long as It Sounds Foreign.
- Fantasy Helmet Enforcement
- First Kiss: Tommy, "Fear of Falling."
- Free-Range Children: The kids are only preteens yet freely wander around town by themselves. Kimi and Chuckie are only eleven and yet work part time at the Java Lava.
- Friend Versus Lover: One sided Chuckie vs. Olivia for Tommy in "Fear of Falling."
- Gang of Hats - Madtooth the Magician's henchmen, who are dressed with a playing card motif. Bonus points for wearing myriad hats with colours corresponding to their suit.
- The Ghost: While she's mentioned several times throughout the series, Grandpa Lou's second wife Lulu never actually appears.
- Gilligan Cut: In "Lucky 13", Angelica refuses to follow Susie's suggestion that she try talking Savannah into changing the date of her party. The next scene then shows Angelica doing exactly what Susie suggested.
- Growing Up Sucks: Often averted, ("Fear of Falling") sometimes played with, ("Wouldn't it be Nice?") or played straight, ("Coup DeVille").
- Growing with the Audience: When Rugrats first aired it was a children's show that focused on the exploits of toddlers. However when the show passed the ten year mark, it was revamped into All Grown Up!, aging the protagonists to the status of pre-teens to appeal to the aging original audience of Rugrats.
- Gum In Hair: One of Tommy's home movies shows Susie trying to pull a large wad of gum out of Kimi's hair.
- Half-Identical Twins: Phil and Lil Deville.
- Halloween Episode: "TP + KF"
- Happily Married: The children's parents are shown to still be together after several years.
- Hurrying Home for the Holidays: In the episode "The Finster Who Stole Christmas", Kimi and Kira are trying to get back home to Chas and Chuckie after visiting Kimi's biological father, Hiro, who is recovering from a bad sushi incident. However, Kimi and Kira keep getting transferred to airports around the world, eventually ending up in Mexico. As Chuckie accidentally stole a Christmas tree from the Hillicki family, believing they threw it out, he believes that he's being smited for theft and Kimi and Kira not being able to get home was his fault. When he returns the tree near the end of the episode, Kimi and Kira arrive back home in time for Christmas.
- Hypocritical Humor: Demonstrated by Angelica in "Yu-Gotta-Go". She rationalizes manipulating Chuckie into doing her chores in exchange for Yu-Gotta-Go cards on the grounds that he just mindlessly got mesmerized by something shiny and then gets distracted by a new model of cell phone.
- Idiot Ball: Phil literally hands one to Tommy (in the form of a bowling ball), which he promptly tosses through his roof like a basketball.
- If I Had a Nickel...: Played with by a police officer in the neighborhood thief episode.If I had a dime for every time someone blamed their crimes on sleep walking, I'd be a rich man... okay maybe not rich... but I'd own a boat.
- Inept Aptitude Test: Played completely straight in "Bad Aptitude."
- Incest Subtext: Phil and Lil shows shades of this, especially in the episode when Phil accidentally walks in on Lil as she was trying on her bra. After that he seems to have an instant attraction to women in general and both are uncomfortable when around each other.
- Then Lil shows signs of this when Phil starts dating her best friend, seeming to want to get her brother's attention back rather than her friend's.
- It's All About Me: Angelica's attitude in general. Best summed up in her response to a boy who had a crush on her in "Dude, Where's My Horse?"."We come from two different worlds! Mine, and everyone else's."
- Jerkass Ball: Every character save for Dil and Angelica (yes, Angelica) has fallen to this, either in single instances or as a group. The biggest example would be the entire group turning on Tommy in "All Broke Up" even though it was mainly their fault Rachel left Tommy on bad terms in the end.
- Jerkass Has a Point: In "Tweenage Tycoons", Pangborn may be at odds with the free-spirited Dil, but his advice to the boy isn't wrong. Pleasing Tommy shouldn't take precedence before Dil's own happiness, and his big brother is letting him down by putting all this unnecessary pressure on making new inventions.
- Just Take the Poster: Tommy does this in the episode "Super Hero Worship" (sic).
- Kabuki Theatre: In "Memoirs of a Finster", Kimi becomes obsessed with her Japanese heritage, and drags her family into several Japanese activities, including a Kabuki performance. Chuckie is disgusted by the reveal that the white face paint traditionally used in Kabuki used to be made of bird poop.
- Karma Houdini: In "Susie Sings the Blues", she pays $1000 to a record dealer to make her a singing sensation. Turns out she was just conned and left out in the middle of the slums. The "producer" disappears from the plot just before the reveal, and recieves absolutely no comeuppance for her actions. She does, however, get an implied comeuppance in the game "All Grown Up!: Express Yourself," when Angelica follows her and calls the police on her, implying that she's been arrested for her actions.
- "Kick Me" Prank:
- In "Coup DeVille", Mr. Beaker attempts to get a laugh out of his students by turning around to reveal a "Kick Me" sign on his back.
- A variation occurs in "A DeVille House Divided" when Vice Principal Pangborn's nephew Morty puts crude drawings of his uncle on his back.
- The Lad-ette: While Lil does try to be a girly-girl to fit in with everyone else, many episodes show that she's a Ladette at heart. Her friend Wally from the soccer team is one also.
- Large Ham: Principal Pangborn is extremely loud and bombastic, courtesy of his voice actor, Clancy Brown.
- Laser-Guided Karma: With Angelica it's not so prominent here than in Rugrats, as she's more of a protagonist than the antagonist she was there, but there's still examples of her machinations coming back to bite her with pinpoint precision. There's even an entire episode dedicated to it.
- Later-Installment Weirdness: After the kids got redesigned, the cold open before the theme song was dropped.
- Limited Wardrobe: Played with. Adults have but one outfit each, but the kids have quite a few looks they rotate through.
- Living Emotional Crutch: Tommy to Chuckie.
- Model Scam: "Susie Sings the Blues" has Susie meet a woman who offers her a chance to audition to be a singer. The only catch is, she has to pay a fee for a studio session in advance. When she shows up to the "studio" it turns out just to be an office building.
- Most Writers Are Adults: Taken to ridiculous levels. The main cast is only 11-to-13-years-old, and yet they all act like 15-to-16-year-olds. Then again, in the original series they acted like toddlers, instead of the babies that they were, so maybe this is just carrying on the tradition?
- My God, What Have I Done?: "I STOLE A CHRISTMAS TREE!"
- My Sister Is Off-Limits:
- Chuckie's reaction to Kimi dating. (And to his suspicion that Tommy may have a 'thing' for her.)
- Phil shows signs of this when he starts to notice the gender differences between him and his sister. Lil herself shows signs of this as well when Phil starts hanging out with her best friend. Many fans take this as Incest Subtext.
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Spinesnapper, the high school student Dil stole the "alien autopsy" video from in the episode "Bad Blood". As if his name wasn't scary enough, Dil informs that he sleeps during the day. When Tommy finds out, he is absolutely horrified. Not only did his brother commit a crime, but he did it to the one guy he really shouldn't have. Worse, Tommy points out that even though it's Dil's fault, he is the one who will be beaten into a pulp, because the local kids apparently have a rule (which seems to extend to the high school crowd) that the older brother must always pay for the younger ones crimes. Tommy actually lampshades the whole thing.Dil: As long as we get the tape back we'll be fine, Spinesnapper sleeps during the day.
Tommy: You stole it from a guy named Spinesnapper!
Dil: And...I'm going to get beat up for it.
Tommy: No, I will. It's a rule they always beat up the older brother!
- Nature Tinkling: Referenced in the episode "River Rats", where Tommy, Chuckie, and Phil go rafting with Chaz and Betty. Chaz at one point asks if there is a bathroom in the great outdoors, which causes Betty to happily explain to him that he'll have to relieve himself behind a tree, which causes the boys to laugh. Tommy, Chuckie, and Phil, however, end up following Chaz after he asks if anyone else needs to go.
- Never Heard That One Before: Tommy about the joke "Can it, Pickles! Or should I say, 'jar it'?"
- Never My Fault: In "All Broke Up", Tommy's friends hear about his girlfriend Rachel moving away and assume that he's hiding a lot of emotional pain about it even when he says to their faces otherwise. After Tommy takes advice from Dil and pretends to have trouble getting over the loss of Rachel to try and get his friends to stop bugging him, Tommy's friends arrange for Rachel to come back, unaware that Tommy already moved on and found a new girl named Anita. After both girls end up angry at Tommy and leaving him, Tommy's friends turn on him too even though the whole thing was pretty much their fault in the first place.
- Nice Jewish Boy: Invoked by Tommy, who tries to use this trope to impress Rachel in "Rachel Rachel".
- No Infantile Amnesia: It is occasionally implied that the kids still remember things they did in Rugrats.
- Tommy mentions in "Rachel Rachel" that he used to keep a screwdriver in his diaper.
- As stated above under Continuity Cavalcade, "Curse of Reptar" shows that the kids remember that they were exposed to Reptar a lot when they were babies. They even remember going to Reptar on Ice (although Chuckie is the one who reminds them of this, and he was the oldest).
- Non-Indicative Title: The show is called All Grown Up, but the protagonists are pre-teens and teenagers rather than adults.
- Noodle Incident: One episode has Lil threatening to blow the whistle on Phil doing "you know what". Subverted at the end of the episode where we find out he spray-painted his skateboard on Betty's wedding dress.
- Not-So-Imaginary Friend: Dil's imaginary alien friend Izzy in the episode "Izzy or Isn't He?" After apparently admitting to everyone that Izzy never existed during his funeral, Dil then claims to Chuckie (who was accused of killing Izzy) that Izzy is alive and well and was watching from one of the chairs in the back. The very last thing we see is a close-up of one of the chairs with the seat part down even though no one's there.
- Old-Timey Cinema Countdown: The intro has a classic countdown from 4 to 2 interspersed with footage from the show and colored flashes.
- Only Sane Man: "Oh Bro, Where Art Thou?" humorously put Cloud Cuckoo Lander Dil in this role. Dil had been annoying Tommy with his usual antics more than normal lately, and when the kids take part in a circus summer camp with a real circus, Dil is partnered with a family of contortionists. They're even crazier and whackier than he is. At first Dil likes this arrangement and even considers joining them on the road. But soon, the antics of the family's children Jean and Pilar wear him down and he quickly sees himself as the Only Sane Man of the contortionist act, giving him a fresh perspective on how Tommy feels sometimes. Tommy for the record, found that he needed Dil's insanity, life is too boring without it.
- Our Slogan Is Terrible: In "Tweenage Tycoons", Angelica and Harold try to make money by selling knockoffs of the products Dil comes up with that Tommy, Kimi, Chuckie, Phil and Lil sell. Their knockoff of Dil's shillows (pillows worn as shoes) have the misfortune of being named "poos", and Harold tries to make the product sound appealing by stating "There's nothing better to have on your foot than a nice soft poo."
- Out of Focus: While never really the main focus of Rugrats the adults appear far less often in this show and are rarely relevant to the plot when they do. Chas and Betty are the only adults who appear fairly regularly and that's only because they run the Java Lava, which is the 'Rats' hangout.
- Overly Narrow Superlative: Chucky is the fastest braces-wearing, red-headed, nearsighted kid on Earth.
- Parental Bonus: Betty's hot flashes in "Chuckie's in Love".
- Perverse Sexual Lust: A G-rated example happens in "Separate but Equal" when Phil and the other boys agree that Yu-Gotta-Go character Princess Nioko is hot.
- Precocious Crush: One of the rare times we really feel sorry for Angelica in "What's Love Got to do With It?"
- Put on a Bus: Z. An entire episode is dedicated to him and a possible romance between himself and Kimi in the first season. By the next, all that's left is a passing mention and a brief, non speaking cameo.
- Also Nicole Boscarelli, whom Chuckie attempted to impress several times in season one.
- Reading the Stage Directions Out Loud: Angelica tries to stage Harold desperately asking her to the dance in the hopes of making a boy jealous. It all goes south when Harold dramatically reads out "get down on bended knee!".
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: After being bullied by him throughout most of "A Deville House Divided," Dil delivers one to Vice Principal Pangborn's nephew Morty.Dil:That's it! I've had it with you! You're selfish, obnoxious, and nobody likes you! And one more thing... Nobody! Touches! The hat! (Walks away, leaving Morty stunned).Morty: I'm Morty-fied.
- River of Insanity: "River Rats" has Tommy, Chuckie, Phil, Betty, and Chaz nearly drown while rafting.
- Sassy Black Woman: Susie ends a lot of sentences with "girl" and has many sassy one-liners. She's not just this however, with a perfectionist and overachiever streak, and plenty of episodes to herself.
- Serious Business: In "Saving Cynthia" when Angelica took what she thought was a mint condition Cynthia to a convention to trade it for her old one, a mob of convention goers started following her and attempted to steal it in broad daylight in front of many witnesses.
- She Is Not My Girlfriend: Tommy says this about Kimi when Chuckie accuses him of liking her. (Naturally, it's hinted at the end that he probably does.)
- "The Curse of Reptar". In that episode they're also watching a film that's meant to be a nod to Poltergeist.
- "Blind Man's Bluff", where Grandpa Boris stumbles around a theme park blindly, is one to Mr. Magoo.
- "Interview With a Campfire" is a play on Interview with the Vampire. Plus at the start a clip is shown of Lil and Dil re-enacting the opening scene of Scream (1996). The ending video is heavily reminiscent of the one from The Ring.
- "Yu-Gotta-Go" is this to Yu-Gi-Oh!.
- "Rat Traps" has several shout outs to Home Alone from the kids foiling a pair of crooks in the mall and the gang also sneak into a movie called Labyrinth, which parodies The Matrix.
- Tell me if the basic storyline of Chuckie's In Love sounds familiar: A person wanting to get closer to someone they care about disguises themselves as a foreigner (with help from their sibling) who seems perfect in every way and the person becomes very fond of...but when they're busted after a failed TwoTimerDate at a restaurant, said person is shocked and hurt...but they reconcile at the end.
- The opening scene of "Truth and Consequences" is an homage to American Beauty
- Lou and Boris' fight in "Bad Blood" begins with one to The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.
- "Brothers Grimm" features a parody of Gilligan's Island.
- The Christmas Episode title "The Finster Who Stole Christmas" is a play on How the Grinch Stole Christmas!.
- Ship Tease: TP+KF has Kimi admit that she once had a crush on Tommy and the ending of the episode suggests she still is.
- Shower Shy: The episode "What’s Love Got to do With It" has Chuckie trying to avoid having to shower in public, until one of his attempts to do so gets him stranded outside the locker room with no clothes or towel. At the end of the episode he finally overcomes his fear.
- Sibling Rivalry: In "Brothers Grimm", between Tommy and Dil.
- Single-Season Country: In "Rachel, Rachel", when Tommy's grandfather Boris has a flashback about his life in Russia (the old country), it shows him and his friend in a snowy landscape wearing winter clothes....complaining about how warm it is this summer.
- Slashers Prefer Blondes: Lampshaded and defied by Angelica in "Curse of Reptar".
- Angelica: It's always the blonde girl with the perfectly bouncy hair that stays home and gets killed.
- Spinoff Babies: Inverted; they were babies in the original show, and older in the spinoff.
- Spraying Drink from Nose: Discussed in the episode "All Broke Up Again":Tommy: So what have I missed?
Lil: Well Phil was drinking some chocolate milk and it spat out of his nose.
- Springtime for Hitler: Susie's attempts to be bad in "Susie's Gone Bad Lite," at least initially. Ultimately she finds herself physically incapable of not doing good deeds, which creeps her out a little.
- Suspicious Ski Mask
- In "Petition This!" Angelica and Chuckie wear the open face variety as they sneak into Tommy's house to steal embarrassing baby pictures of Kimi. The masks don't cover their faces at all, but at least they're wearing dark colors suitable for blending in with the night.
- In "The Finster Who Stole Christmas." Chuckie, Tommy, Dil, Phil, and Lil wear the mouthless variety of ski masks as they steal back the tree Chuckie accidentally stole to return it and stop the manhunt for him.
- Take Our Word for It: In "Bad Blood", when Lil asks if the stress rash on Tommy's face is psoriasis, Chuckie shoots this down and shows them what psoriasis looks like, revealing that he has it. We don't see Chuckie's psoriasis, but judging by Tommy, Dil, and Phil's reaction, it's sure to be gross.
- Take That!: In "Rat Traps", the kids express disdain for a movie called The Big Dumb Talking Cat Movie, which is a blatant jab at the live-action Garfield film.
- Teen Drama: Although the cast are in their pre-teen years, the series tends to favour this a lot, especially compared to their carefree days of infancy where they were a lot friendlier and less snappish.
- The Alleged Car: The Itex American Deluxe R.V. from the episode "R.V. Having Fun Yet". The moment they set foot inside, Lil's foot start's to sink into the carpet, there is a "moldy bathing suit smell" as Betty describes it, it constantly falls apart. Amazingly, it actually succeeds in making most of the journey.
- The Cameo: Fifi, the Poodle that the Finsters adopted in Rugrats in Paris, Breifly shows up in "Memoirs of a Finster" and "The Finster Who Stole Christmas".note
- Thinly-Veiled Dub Country Change: The Dutch dub attempted this by changing the setting from the USA to The Netherlands, replacing American cities with Dutch ones... despite none of the cities in it looking anything like those of The Netherlands.
- Thirteenth Birthday Milestone: The episode "Lucky 13" revolves around Angelica's upcoming 13th birthday, with her bragging about becoming a teenager while her preteen peers won't be, and how she'll finally be able to sit with the cool crowd at lunch, but unfortunately, her rival Savannah is hosting a party the same day and Angelica feels like nobody will care about her 13th birthday.
- Thousand-Yard Stare: Susie after she learns she has been conned out of a thousand dollars by a con artist pretending to be a talent agent.
- Time Skip: The series takes place about 10 years after Rugrats.
- Title Drop: Happens in "Dude, Where's My Horse?" when Dil asks where his horse is.
- Token Minority: Susie and Kimi for being African-American and Japanese respectively, though they receive their fair share of focus apart from the other kids.
- Too Much Information: Phil mentions in "What's Love Got to Do With It?" that he likes to be completely naked at home; Tommy makes a mental note about always calling the DeVilles' place before visiting.
- Took a Level in Kindness: Angelica compared to the parent series. While still self-centered and occasionally rude, she's considerably less of a brat and gets many more Pet the Dog moments. It's lampshaded by Susie."It's hard to believe you're nicer now than you used to be."
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Susie was a model little girl in Rugrats, who spoke politely to everyone and was near flawless. Here she has much more of a Deadpan Snarker side, occasionally gets jealous, and often makes jokes at Angelica's expense. She's still well-behaved though, and gets an episode where she tries to be bad but fails.
- The Triple:Stu: "We're going to get you something every kid dreams of having."Angelica: "A home in Aspen?"Dil: "A six week course in Portuguese?"Chuckie: "Respect?"
- Twin Switch: Obviously Phil and Lil in "Runaround Susie."
- Two-Teacher School: Played straight sometimes and averted others. Over the course of the series we see about four regular teachers plus their vice principal and some one-off elective teachers... however they also tend to reuse teachers for other classes depending on the episodes. As this is middle school, it's somewhat justified: many middle schools have the students have one main class and a few others, so them having the same teachers all day, with others only being around for electives, makes sense.
- Uncatty Resemblance: Each of the horses the gang rides in "Dude, Where's My Horse" resemble them - right down to the hair colors and styles.
- Unlimited Wardrobe: Toned down in the first season where the main cast has only two base outfits; played straight from Season 2 onward, where the characters wear a plethora of outfits.
- Vocal Evolution: All of the Rugrats are voiced by the same actresses they had in Rugrats, but most of them more mature-sounding voices to reflect the characters' older ages. Only Chuckie and Phil sound more or less the same as they did in the prior show.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Susie and Angelica. On the one hand, they're fierce rivals - Angelica is resentful and often antagonistic towards Susie's talent, and Susie shows great disdain for Angelica's meanness - whenever something involves taking Angelica down a peg expect Susie to be on board right away (if not spearheading it) and vice versa. Over the course of the show each enacted some antagonistic plot or another against the other, but on the other hand they're very good friends who tend to look out for each other when the chips are down. In fact, they seem so used to their rivalry that their battles against one another seem like just another part of their friendship.
- Wag the Director: In-universe examples in "Truth or Consequences", when Tommy is trying to make a sci-fi film.
Susie: It's a choice.Tommy: Make another one.
- Angelica is written as a tyrannical alien queen but she changes her lines to make the character benevolent, convinced her 'fans' would want to see her as a hero.
- Susie ham-tastically delivers a Badass Boast in song, getting a Flat "What" from Tommy.
- "Walk on the Wild Side" Episode:
- Susie gets told she's too perfect by the popular girls and decides to go bad for the episode. Angelica of all people tells her to calm down. At first it's parodied when Susie's idea of going bad involves rearranging the library books.
- Chuckie assumes Kimi is going this way in the episode "Bad Kimi". He's wrong.
- Wham Line: From "Saving Cynthia":Angelica: This bites, I'm thirteen, but I might as well be six. I mean, what's the point of being thirteen, if you're still treated like a kid? Can you believe it, Cynthia!?...Woah, I just talked to CYNTHIA!
- Wig, Dress, Accent: Lil does this when Phil is pretending to be her (and ruining her reputation). She dons a blonde wig, large sunglasses and sombrero to hide herself.
- Wise Beyond Their Years: From All Grown Up to All Growed Up (Which, while it premiered first, takes place after the series proper): Dil is 9-10, Phil, Lil, Tommy and Kimi are 10-11, Chuckie is 11-12, and Susie and Angelica are 12-13. Each of them tend to act as though they're a few years older.
- X Must Not Win: Angelica seems to encourage this sort of behavior in people. Tommy acts like this towards her and alienates his friends in "Rats Race," and in "Petition This" Susie acts like this towards her and accidentally causes a lot of grief for Kimi, who Susie was supposed to be helping. In general, Angelica is like this towards Susie succeeding where she doesn't but tends to fail; subverted in 'In The Family's Way', when Angelica starts getting the upper hand and Susie (with help from her brothers) resort to playing dirty against Angelica, resulting in Angelica winning in the end and Susie (and her brothers), for once, getting grounded.