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Western Animation / Allen Gregory

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Allen Gregory was an American animated television series created by Jonah Hill, Andrew Mogel, and Jarrad Paul that aired on Fox. The series premiered on October 30, 2011 and ended December 18, 2011.

The series followed Allen Gregory De Longpre (Jonah Hill), a pretentious seven-year-old boy being raised by his father Richard and his father's life partner Jeremy, and who has, because of a recession, been forced to attend a public elementary school.

It was officially cancelled by Fox in early January 2012 after 7 episodes.

Provides examples of:

  • Adorably Precocious Child: Clearly attempted with Allen Gregory, but it failing is one of the major criticisms of the show. He is pint-sized and precocious yet selfish, arrogant, and pretentious, making him intolerable rather than adorable.
  • Adults Are Useless: While not true towards all adults, the spirit is enforced. The adults with power and authority are egomaniacs who are easily manipulated (though never towards positive ends). The adults who are powerless almost universally serve as a voice of reason, though even then can often be easily manipulated by the younger cast members.
  • Aesop Amnesia: Seemingly in-universe, as neither Allen nor his father retain anything they actually learn for more than a few moments, especially if it comes to interfere with their own selfish ends later.
  • Animation Bump: The unaired pilot has bouncier and more expressive animation that the actual series itself.
  • Attention Whore:
    • Allen is this, big time.
    • Richard, especially when the attention is focused on Jeremy.
  • Bald of Evil: Richard. He's bald and is a completely narcissistic, sociopathic, and just loathsome individual in general.
  • Big Bad: When all is said and done, Richard falls into this, if only for the bare-bones definition given by this wiki: "The cause of all bad happenings in a story." His treatment of ( and backstory of his relationship with) his life partner Jeremy is bad enough, but the fact that he has raised the main protagonist to be just as much of a tool as he is (and even encourages it!) means that he's to blame for the consequences of Allen's behaviour on others by proxy.
  • Black Comedy Rape:
    • The superintendent and Gina.
    • Richard and Jeremy, given the way Allen describes them. Disturbingly, he does not seem to have a problem with it.
      Allen Gregory: I think it would just need to be regular sex. Like, one person should be running away, saying, "No, I don't feel like it," and the other person should completely ignore that and be like, "C'mon, Jeremy, just go with it!" and then there should be a slap, and then somebody should plead to God, like, "What has my life become?!" And then I think we should just wrap it up with a little crying in the bathroom.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: In-universe. This was what saved Allen's play.
  • Butt-Monkey: Nearly everybody whom Allen Gregory or his father interact with; Jeremy, Julie, and Gina are easily the most severe cases, though.
  • Child Prodigy: Allen certainly acts like one and may believe he is, but it's unclear whether this is the case of, or if he, like his father, depends mostly on power, bullheadedness and selective obliviousness to get his way.
  • Children Are Innocent: Played straight with Patrick. Averted with Allen Gregory in every possible way.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: The comedic part may be subject to opinion due to Allen's and Richard's overall depraved personality.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Patrick, in the case of Allen's attraction to the principal. He's probably lucky he doesn't understand it.
  • Cringe Comedy: Most of the humor comes from Allen and Richard simply being awful and twisted people.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Yeah... basically everyone, especially Allen and Julie.
  • Depraved Homosexual: Richard, a gay man who stalked and made Jeremy, a straight man, his bitch and treats him and everyone else he works for like crap.
  • Dirty Kid: Allen, supposedly altered from his father's toxic influence on him.
  • Dogged Nice Guy: Jeremy and Patrick. They're nice people who had to put up with Allen's, and in the case of Jeremy, Richard's abhorrent behavior.
  • Domestic Abuse: Richard to Jeremy, having forced the man into an unwanted sexual relationship with him when Jeremy happens to be straight. Allen's aforementioned recollection of their antics when they're alone suggests that a lot of this is going on, with Jeremy on the receiving end of all of it. In "Van Moon Rising", Jeremy is visibly terrified of what Richard will have in store for him if Julie does not attend Perry Van Moon's dinner.
  • Downer Ending: The final scene of the series before its cancellation shows Allen leaving Gina at the mercy of the lecherous superintendent.
  • Expy:
    • Allen's basically an elementary school–aged Stewie Griffin minus the supervillain kick, or a non-obese Eric Cartman as well, minus anything that makes those characters funny. Granted, morality-wise, Allen Gregory is the most good by default since the worst he is simply obnoxious but otherwise harmless.
    • Richard is the spitting image of Dean Pelton. See here. He also greatly resembles Dr. Venture minus the goatee.
      • He is actually based on the real-life writing partner of Jeremy's voice actor. Yes, JEREMY!
  • Extreme Doormat: Jeremy regularly puts up with Richard and Allen's abuse. It's implied this is how Richard managed to tear him away from his family.
  • Gayngst: Inverted. Richard forced Jeremy into a gay relationship and marries him so he can treat him like crap, despite the man having a wife and two kids.
  • First-Name Basis: Part of Allen Gregory's disrespect for Gina is him always referring to her by her first name. He will also refer to Principal Gottlieb by her first name when he's feeling particularly amorous. For obvious reasons, neither appreciate it but eventually give up on trying to correct him.
  • Full-Name Basis: For one reason or another, Allen Gregory is referred to as such by everyone.
  • Hate Sink: It's pretty hard to think that Richard De Longpre was not meant to be this to the audience. He's a humongous Jerkass who acts Too Dumb to Live, was Kicked Upstairs in his own company due to his sheer incompetence, was outright stated to have stalked his life partner into making him leave his family, routinely mistreats said partner, and seems to take pride in how much of an arrogant, self-serving, underhanded slimeball he is.
  • Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: Jeremy, almost repeatedly says this all the time.
  • Helium Speech: Patrick possesses one, as he one of the few child characters who doesn't have a severe case of Vocal Dissonance.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Jeremy is literally the heterosexual life partner of Richard, much to his chagrin.
  • Hot Teacher: Gina, who is surprisingly pretty with a very nice figure. Subverted in that Allen inexplicably hates her and doesn't show any attraction to her, instead falling for the fat, elderly principal, Gottlieb.
  • Hypocrite: Richard and Allen. A particularly good example comes from Richard, who fully believes his son has engaged in making a sex tape with a principal seventy years his senior, but demands that Julie prove she has any actual friends by bringing them over to their penthouse in person. Unsurprisingly, neither are fazed whenever they're called out on this.
  • Innocent Bigot: Though the defining "innocent" is up for debate, Allen Gregory genuinely doesn't understand that not all Hispanics work in the service industry. It also does not help that Richard reinforces the racist misconceptions to Allen, showing that Allen is pretty much just like his father.
  • Insistent Terminology: It's "Allen Gregory", not just "Allen".
  • Insufferable Genius: Allen thinks his intelligence makes him superior to other kids. This naturally makes his classmates hate him.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: Allen Gregory has one with Carl.
  • Isn't It Ironic?: The pilot episode has Phil Collins's "In the Air Tonight" playing when Allen sees his principal for the first time and starts having lusty fantasies about her. Even though looking at the verses (which the show conveniently left out) reveals that the song isn't romantic or even lustful, but is instead a very dark song about having bitter feelings towards someone.
  • It's All About Me:
    • Allen loves this trope.
    • So does Richard, apparently.
  • Jerkass:
    • Allen Gregory, in spades. This has a lot to do with how he was raised, and so has little to no tact when dealing with people, much to the annoyance of just about everyone he irritates with his behavior.
    • Richard, which is probably where Allen got it from, as dialogue in the episode "Gay School Dance" indicates.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Subverted. In "Van Moon Rising", Jeremy attempts to paint Richard as this, so that Julie will attend a party hosted by Richard's Sitcom Arch-Nemesis Perry Van Moon. Julie is completely unconvinced, and even Jeremy is forced to admit the obvious.
  • Jerk With A Heart Of Jerk: Richard. Jeremy convinces Julie to go to the party in "Van Moon Rising" by explaining that if Richard is shown up by Van Moon, he will make their lives even more miserable than they already are.
  • Karma Houdini: Allen and Richard are almost never punished for their absolutely awful behavior.
  • Kafka Komedy: For Jeremy. No matter how nice and decent he acts, Allen finds some reason to berate him and Richard finds some reason to belittle him.
  • Kicked Upstairs: Richard is too incompetent to run the family business. So his father, Allen's grandfather, made up the title of "Super CEO" and gave his son meaningless busy work to keep him from ruining the corporation by trying to run it.
  • Like Father, Like Son: Nearly everything Richard (father) does, Allen (son) emulates, whether it is seeking attention or having messed-up (if accidental) views on the issue of race.
  • Limited Animation: The show has such stilted and lifeless animation to the point that the animators refuse to give anyone in the background any animation whatsoever. It's produced by the same studio as Bob's Burgers after all.
  • Little Miss Snarker: Julie. It's justified considering that she puts up with Allen Gregory and Richard on a regular basis.
  • Magical Negro: The concept is played with Carl. Allen Gregory treats him as this, but he's quite clearly as crazy and useless as every other adult in his life.
  • Male Gaze: The first thing we see in Allen Gregory's POV is... a close-up of Principal Gottlieb's backside. *shudders*
  • Manchild: Richard is definitely this, and far from the charming variety at that.
  • Naked Apron: Jeremy is forced to wear an apron without a shirt on. He's obviously uncomfortable with this, especially while in front of his kids.
  • Never My Fault:
    • Richard blames Jeremy for his own faults.
    • Allen does it to Patrick, too.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: As stated above, we're given no indication that Allen's intelligence is above normal, but early commercials had Allen saying he had written "genre-shattering novels" and won the Nobel Prize.
  • Nice Guy: Jeremy is usually well-meaning and good-hearted. Probably the only decent guy in the Delongpre family.
  • Nobody Poops: Subverted; Allen Gregory craps himself when Principal Gottlieb slaps him after rejecting his advances upon her.
  • Only Sane Man: Julie, Jeremy, Gina, and Principal Gottlieb. They're practically the characters the viewers would rather root for because of how malicious Allen and Richard are to everyone.
  • Ordered Apology: The only way you can ever get Allen Gregory to do the right thing, trust us. Or better yet, watch the episode where he is reunited with his mother.
  • Parental Sexuality Squick: Averted. Allen Gregory describes his parents' sex life to Carl and without any hint of disgust. The viewers are probably a little disturbed, though.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • You can consider Richard doting on Allen this, to the point of sacrificing his own happiness with Jeremy in "Mom Sizemore" just so Allen would have a mother and be happy.
    • His adoption of Julie is both an Invoked Trope and an Inverted Trope: he announces it to give this impression to his guests, but his subsequent treatment of her afterwards is where it's inverted.
  • The Pollyanna: Patrick.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: One whole episode focuses on Allen Gregory attempting to prove he's not racist after openly mocking Guillermo, who's Mexican-American; predictably, he only solidifies this accusation in front of his peers, and doesn't treat their Mexican housekeeper any better before firing her just for using the restroom. He also treats Carl as a glorified Magical Negro for an entire episode.
  • Popular History: Averted. The show is said to be set in the 60s, as there are many references to 1960s pop culture, yet at the same time has contemporary stuff like online gaming, DVDs, and being set after the Great Recession, things and events that clearly didn't exist nor happened until decades later.
  • Prince Charming Wannabe: Allen, big time. He not only hits on the very old Principal Gottlieb, but insists that the two of them are meant to be together, despite her protests and the fact that she is married.
  • Protagonist Title: The title clearly refers to the main protagonist Allen.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Despite being Allen's father, Richard shows even less maturity than him.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Sheila delivers one to Allen and Richard when she leaves them. Her words would echo exactly what people absolutely hated about the show and its characters, things that would lead to the show being cancelled:
    Sheila: Oh no, I'm leaving by choice, 'cause you [Allen] are a horrible child that says terrible things to people. And, Richard, I don't know if you've noticed this about yourself, but you are a gay man, maybe the gayest man I've ever met. I got swept up in the idea of wanting to be in my son's life, but you are a family of awful people. Except Julie, she's sweet!
  • Running Gag: Allen insults his teacher, and often flirts with the principal.
  • Sadist Teacher: Allen views his teacher Gina as this, whenever she tries to assert control over the class. That said, Gina does occasionally indulge in some schadenfreude at Allen's expense due to a personal grudge.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Played with with Richard and Jeremy. Initially, Richard and Jeremy seem to have this dynamic as Richard is slender and neurotic while Jeremy is well-built and more down to earth, but it is soon clear that Richard is very assertive and uncaring while Jeremy is sensitive and harbours his own scars.
  • Sissy Villain: Despite his raging idiocy, Richard still plays the part of the decadent gay sociopath to the hilt. And then does unspeakable things with said hilt.
  • The Sociopath: Richard fits this to a T. He thinks very highly of himself and lives solely to satisfy his immediate whims, something best shown in his relationship with Jeremy. He had a wife and children until Richard stalked him and tore his family apart, giving Jeremy no choice but to give in to his advances and become his Trophy Husband, treated like a Sex Slave at best, and utter trash at worst. If that weren't enough, Richard also feels entitled to a big position in his father's company despite doing nothing to deserve it, and threw temper tantrums until he was eventually Kicked Upstairs. In one episode, he happily admits to his son that he aims to be as much of a deceitful, underhanded slimeball as he can get away with, and only considers being honest as an absolute last resort.
  • Surrounded by Idiots:
    • Allen feels this way. Julie at times as well.
    • Allen's teacher and principal also feel the same way, especially when it comes to the superintendent.
  • Title Theme Tune: "Allen... Gregory. (Allen, Allen!)"
  • Token Rich Student: Allen is forced to attend a public elementary school after his family falls on hard times.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Richard. Also serves as an in-universe example, as he is shown to be so dysfunctional and inept as an adult that his father's own company works tirelessly to maintain the illusion that he has any important role in it to prevent him from bringing it down.
  • Troubling Unchildlike Behaviour: Allen, very much so. To give just one example: The second episode's plot is about him lying about making a pornographic film with the 70-something Principal Gottlieb.
  • Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: Allen, though its hard to tell if he is supposed to be funny because how the show is written.
  • Vague Age: Though she's obviously supposed to be an old woman, Principal Gottlieb's exact age is never mentioned in the entire series, meaning she could easily be anywhere from her late 60s to her 80s. Her bitter indifference to life, and how this manifests in the form of her physical appearance, and health and mannerisms and so on, makes it pretty ambiguous. Seriously, many people who have discussed for this show frequently mess around of what her age is, including this very website.
  • Villain Protagonist: Allen and Richard, full stop.
  • Vocal Dissonance: Jonah Hill voicing 7-year-old Allen is just one example. Most of the kids in Allen's elementary school sound way off. That is to say, none of the voice actors even attempted to sound like children, though Patrick, Allen's (only) friend, is the only one who avoids this.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Thanks to the show being taken off the air, we may never know who Jeremy's wife and kids were before Richard came into the picture.
  • World of Jerkass: The only character who isn't a huge jerk is Jeremy, and he's basically a doormat for Richard and Allen.