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Western Animation / Fish Hooks

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One, two, three, four!
Who's that knockin' at my door?
Five, six, seven, eight!
Hurry up and don't be late!
Nine, ten, eleven, twelve!
Got a secret I can't tell!
Flap your fins, flip your tail!
School's out, ring the bell!
Opening Theme

Fish Hooks was an animated series on Disney Channel, created by Noah Z. Jones (whose other claim to fame is Almost Naked Animals) and produced by Alex Hirsch (whose other claim to fame is Gravity Falls, also on Disney Channel). The show deals with three fish: Milo, the eccentric party guy (Kyle Massey); his nervous brother Oscar (Justin Roiland), and their "overly dramatic" female friend Bea (Chelsea Kane), as they attend high school—namely Freshwater High—in an aquarium at a pet store named Bud's Pets. The series chronicles their daily lives as they deal with various things, such as friendships, dating, and sports, as well as typical t(w)een issues such as giant lobster attacks and field trips to the hamster cages.

It started in 2010, and, after four years and three seasons, the series closed out on April 4th, 2014.

Fish Hooks provides examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Clamantha to Oscar, Randy to Bea.
  • A Day In The Lime Light:
    • "Chicks Dig Vampires" and "Glass Man Standing" focuses on Albert's relationship with Esmargot.
    • "Jocktopizza" is told in Jocktopus's point of view, with barely any involvement from the main cast until the end.
  • Advertised Extra: Piranhica, despite even appearing in promotional artwork, has had a grand total of seven lines through out season 1. One of them being a part of background noise.
  • All Just a Dream: "Pool Party Panic". The second and third act surrounds around Milo trying to wake up, or at least prove to his friends that everything is a dream and that they're all fishes in real life.
  • Alpha Bitch: Pirahnica, Jocktopus's girlfriend.
    • Clamanda, Clamantha's rival from the episode "We've Got Fish Spirit".
    • Lovable Alpha Bitch: Shellsea, who is good friends with Milo, Bea, and Oscar.

  • All There in the Manual: Milo and Oscar's last name is "Fishtooth", according to sources.
  • Ambiguously Jewish: Bea Goldfishberg. There's also Oscar's Jewfro.
    • Bea is a more explicit example since she has parents who sport Jewfros.
  • And You Were There: Oscar hits his head and wakes up in a fantasy kingdom populated by fish that look like people he knows. He thinks it's all a dream, but Milo and Bea find him and tell him he was just moved to another fish tank. Turns out a lot of fish look alike.
  • Anguished Declaration of Love: While Bea is giving her valedictorian speech, she realizes that she actually does love Oscar, and announces it to the whole school.
  • Animals Not to Scale: Keep in mind these guys are normal-sized fish that live in a pet store aquarium... and yet it seems like they have a whole town inside it.
  • Another Dimension: The main trio go through two of these as they chase a walking fish tank in "Pool Party Panic". They also change as they go through them into:
    • Anthropomorphic Food: in the penultimate dimension before arriving at the titular pool party.
    • Bouncing Battler: in the final dimension before the pool party. Only Milo is shown to use this method though.
  • Anti-Humor: Despite the show having punny character names such as "Clamantha" and "Jocktopus," any reference to the fish-world equivalent of a real-world locale simply has the word "Fish" attached to it rather than a fish-related pun, such as "Fish Broadway" or "Fish Austin, Texas."
    • An extreme use of this is "Fish Ancient Greece". Not "Ancient Fish Greece".
    • Semi-justified as there are other species around the pet shop, a point brought up in "Hooray for Hamsterwood".
  • Art Evolution: Animation becomes much more fluid as the series progresses. Notice in later seasons the characters' eyes have gotten bigger and they emote more expressively.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever:
  • Babysitting Episode: "Assignment: Babies" revolves around the trio taking care of Mr. Baldwin's children.
  • Berserk Button: If you happen to be a Jerkass, don't even touch Bea. Oscar will be very pissed.
  • Bigfoot Sasquatchand Yeti: The Yeti Lobster.
  • Big Beautiful Woman: Shellsea's human version in Party Pool Panic.
  • The Bully: Jocktopus ruthlessly torments the other students at Freshwater High.
  • Butt-Monkey: Oscar, Albert Glass, Finberly, and Mr. Baldwin.
  • Casanova Wannabe: Randy Pincherson, though he only targets Bea.
  • Catchphrase: "Details, details, doodley doo!"
    • "HOT DOG!!"
  • Cats Are Mean: The orange cat in the pet shop.
    • Ms. Lips cat, Attila
  • Chekhov's Gun: In "Dollars and Fish", Milo gets a loan from Randy Pincherson and spends it on a diamond-encrusted motorcycle. After getting his pay from a job, he realizes that his job alone won't get him the money he needs sooner when Milo's boss points out said motorcycle.
  • Christmas Episode: "Merry Fishmas, Milo".
  • Continuity Nod:
    • In "Fail Fish", Kevin brings up two events that happened in "Doggonit!" and "Fish Out of Water".
    • During "Riding in Cars with Fish", Oscar comes across a wanted poster of Milo, which referenced events that went down in "Pamela Hamster Returns".
  • Couch Gag: Each episode opens with an exterior shot of the pet shop with a sign that says "Bud's Pets And [Insert Plot Relevant Service or Product Here]".
  • Cowboy Episode: Cattlefish, Ho!.
  • Creator Cameo: Bud, the photorealistic pet shop owner, is modeled after storyboard artist Sherm Cohen.
    • The toy "Tickle-Me Carl" is also based off of C.H. Greenblatt, one of the directors/writers/storyboard artists of the show.
    • Noah Z. Jones plays Bea's father, and Maxwell Atoms plays Razor and Bo Gregory.
  • Credits Gag: The Snake and Mouse's commentary.
  • Crush Filter: Oscar sees Bea this way.
  • The Cuckoolander Was Right: In "Just One Of The Fish", Oscar and everyone else know the new student "Hank" is Bea in disguise, but Milo thinks it's actually a boy. It turns out he was right - Hank is an actual student who looks like Bea dead on.
  • Cute Little Fangs: The Snake.
    • She still has them as a human at the end of Pool Party Panic, though It's not that notable
  • Description Cut: One in the first episode.
    Oscar: Uh oh, she's losing it again, Milo.
    Milo: Is she bro, is she?
    (Cue this)
    Oscar: Yes!
  • Disguised in Drag: Milo and Oscar dress as girls to get into Bea's all-girl slumber party. No one was fooled. Except Clamantha.
  • Distaff Counterpart: Shiloh to Milo.
  • Distant Duet:
    • One occurs between Oscar and Milo in "Dances With Wolf Fish".
    • Another between Oscar and Clamantha in "Two Clams In Love".
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Milo and Bea's reaction to Oscar's blogging, and in the same episode, Oscar's attempt at flushing himself down a toilet.
    Bea: Listen to me, whatever is troubling you, you'll make it through.
  • Don't Explain the Joke: "I'm a claaaam!"
  • Drugs Are Bad: "Big Fish" can be viewed as a "don't do steroids" episode.
  • Dub Name Change: Justified, as most of the fishes have punny names. The Latin American Spanish dub of "Pool Party Panic" even has the characters using the "normal" version of names. (Ex. Shellsea —> Ostrencia —> Hortencia; Clamantha —> Almejandra —> Alejandra, etc.)
  • Dumb Muscle: Jocktopus. In "Happy Birthfish, Jocktopus" he doesn't even know what money is.
  • Everyone Can See It: Near the beginning of "Pool Party Panic", human!Milo mentions how obvious Oscar's crush on Bea was in his dream. Human!Bea calls her fish self stupid as human!Oscar is beside her, distressed.
  • Family-Unfriendly Violence: For a show on the Disney Channel, this show uses an incredible amount of violence, ranging from characters being eaten onscreen to a scene where Clamantha is thrown out the window by Jocktopus where a car runs her over, to a scene at the end of "Dropsy!" where a sick fish's face peels off and the muscle can be seen in detail.
  • Fat and Skinny:
  • Faux Horrific: "WE'RE OUT OF SHARPENED PENCILS!!!" from "Bea Becomes an Adult Fish".
  • Feather Fingers: The entire cast. Oddly, they change from normal fins to "hand" fins when needed.
    • Tailfin Walking: The entire cast, again. Oddly, their tailfins are designed nothing like those of real fish or legs and feet.
  • Feud Episode: Fish Talent Show. An incident involving Clamantha's face and Shellsea's foot causes causes them to fight. At one point, the whole school gets involved.
  • I Have This Friend: Subverted in the episode of the same name. When Shellsea uses the trope name and describes her friend like she would describe herself, her friends assume she's talking about herself when she's really talking about her Spear Counterpart friend.
  • Interspecies Romance:
    • The brief romance between Pamela Hamster, a hamster, and Milo, a fish.
    • The one-sided romance between Clamantha and Oscar counts, since clams technically aren't fish.
    • Also the one-sided romance between Randy, a crab, and Bea, a fish.
    • Mr. Baldwin, the pregnant seahorse teacher mentioned previously, is revealed to have a "mega crush" on Ms. Lips, a squid. For a long time, he is too scared to approach her until his secret gets out. Later, they started dating officially.
    • Albert Glass, a glass fish, and Esmargot, a snail, are dating.
    • Koi (don't need to say anything here) starts a relationship with another boy in school, who is of a different species of fish.
    • Finberly had a failed phone-romance with a ferret named Cody, and is distressed about being dumped for several episodes.
    • Piranhica, an piranha, and Jocktopus, an octopus. Several episodes revolve around them having relationship issues .
  • Ironic Echo: In "Principal Bea".
    Bea: That's it! How is this school supposed to function without some form of authority? If I don't get the perfect education, I won't go the perfect college, and I won't meet the perfect guy, and I won't have the perfect life AND NO ONE IS GOING TO BE HAPPY IF THAT HAPPENS!
    Fishington: If you were to step down as principal, my secret would be exposed. This school would be in chaos! And no one is going to be happy if that happens.
  • "It" Is Dehumanizing: Shellsea talking about Clamantha after kicking her by accident in "Fish Talent Show": "I didn't kick it in the face. Its face kicked me in the foot!"
  • Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: At the end of "Fish School Musical", after showing some Hidden Depths, Jocktopus goes right back to bullying.
  • Karma Houdini: Randy Pincherson in the Christmas Episode. He admits out loud that he was only doing the job for money, he treated kids like crap all day, and he even tried to quit before his job was done. Unfortunately, when Bea snapped and tried to get the Santa costume off of him, she got fired after Randy made it seem like it was her fault. He never gets his comeuppance.
  • Kissing Discretion Shot: Oscar and Bea's kiss at the end of "The Big Woo".
  • Large Ham:
    • Bea
    • George Takei's bird
    • Jocktopus
    • Mr. Mussels. He is a drama teacher, after all.
  • "Last Day of School" Plot: The final episode revolves around the trio's last week at Freshwater High before their graduation ceremony.
  • Last Episode Theme Reprise: The graduation ceremony in the series finale is followed by the whole cast singing the theme song.
  • Last-Minute Hookup: Oscar and Bea become a couple during their graduation.
  • Line-of-Sight Alias: How Oscar came up with a name for his fake girlfriend Doris Flores Gorgeous, by altering the words "door" and "floor" and adding an adjective that was also an attractive character trait.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • An oscar is a popular species of aquarium fish.
    • Bo Gregory is a pun on the Beaugregory fish
  • Medium Blending: Most of the fish are drawn in regular cartoon-y style, but their setting and anything outside the tanks are portrayed in a photorealistic style.
  • Milestone Celebration: With "Camp Camp", the series officially reaches 100 episodes.
  • Mirror Character: When the gang finds out that Clamantha has a Stalker Shrine of Oscar, he isn't as creeped out as his friends because Oscar has a similar shrine of Bea in his locker.
  • Mister Seahorse: A literal example with one of their teachers, Mr. Baldwin. Lampshaded, even. And he apparently has the Longest Pregnancy Ever, which got a brief lampshade during "Koi Story". The births finally happen in "Labor of Love", in the middle of a restaurant being ravaged by a giant hairless cat (who actually STOPS his rampage to serve as the DOULA), no less...
  • Mixand Match Critters: The monster Oscar plays in "Hare and Back Again" has the head of a lion, the body of a spider and snakes for legs.
  • Mouse World: The characters are fish-sized and reside in an aquarium.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: In "Mascotastrophe", Milo reveals the fact that he and Oscar are both the school mascot. Because of this, the geckos use this to their advantage and kidnap Oscar so the fishes' basketball team would lose.
  • No Cartoon Fish: Inverted; the fish cast are cartoony, but the rest of the world is photorealistic.
  • Non-Mammalian Hair: A lot of fish have hair, like Oscar's afro or Clamantha's ponytail, but others either end up having their dorsal fins act like hair, like Milo and Shellsea, or none at all.
  • Non-Mammal Mammaries:
    • On many occasions, some fish have been shown to have nipples. A small number female characters have breasts.
    • In one episode, Oscar disguised himself as an adult woman and even included fake breasts in the mix.
  • Noodle Incident: A handful of them come up in "Fail Fish". How did a can of non-stick spray nearly kill Milo, Oscar, Bea, and apparently Albert Glass?
    • How did the gang end up in a tank full of jellyfish?
    • What happened while the gang decided to go for a swim in the pet shop's toilet?
    • What happened in 1986 that caused Mr. Baldwin to never laugh or go out on a Friday night ever again? And while we're at it, how did he get knocked up?
  • No Sympathy: In "Science Fair Detective Mystery" Oscar wins the science fair, but gets his ribbon taken away when his project is stolen even though he already won.
  • Not What It Looks Like: Subverted when Clamantha is caught making out with Oscar's laptop.
  • Official Couple:
    • Jocktopus and Piranhica
    • Milo and Pamela Hamster in "Hooray for Hamsterwood". They broke up sometime before "Bea Dates Milo", though.
    • Albert and Esmargot as of "Chicks Dig Vampires"
    • Mr. Baldwin and Ms. Lips as of "Fish Lips Sink Ships".
    • Oscar and Bea in the series finale.
  • Pac-Man Fever: Oscar's video games.
  • Parents for a Day: Mr. Baldwin's class is assigned his litter of children (two students to a baby) so he can get a week off.
  • Perky Goth: Oscar, when he was one.
  • Piranha Problem: Piranhica is the aggressive Alpha Bitch of the school.
  • Playing Sick: In "Dropsy!", Milo fakes a fish sickness called "dropsy" so he can be bestowed with a lot of things like Albert. It goes too far when the sickness wears off after a week, and still fakes sickness which causes him to be sent to a tank with dead fish.
  • Pop-Star Composer: Former Jellyfish frontman Andy Sturmer scores some of the episodes.
  • Punny Name: Quite a few. For example, Clamantha (guess what she is), Jocktopus, Finberley, Shellsea, Piranhica and several others, with possibly more to come.
  • Quarter Hour Short: Episodes are generally aired this way on their first airing, often to fill up the rest of the hour after a movie, though the series uses a Two Shorts format. Each segment also has its own unique credits sequence.
  • Real After All: Subverted In “Doris Flores Gorgeous”. The girlfriend Oscar makes up appears to exist, but it was just Clamantha in a costume. Unfortunately, Oscar never found out.
  • Recurring Extra: At the end credits, there is a snake and a mouse who usually give commentary on what's happened in the last episode (or the episode it was paired with, it depends on which one Disney Channel aired). The snake wants to join the fish in their tanks, while the mouse is all right with being in a small terrarium with the snake.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: The geckos (normally aversions to this trope) are heartless jerkasses that enjoy seeing a fish suffocate without water. Only the snake is an exception to the general abhorrence.
  • Robotic Reveal: Nurse Fishington in "Principal Bea". Stickler made her so he wouldn't have to do his job.
  • Satellite Character/Satellite Love Interest: All of Angela's appearances revolve around her being Oscar's girlfriend. Her season 3 appearances revolve around her being Jumbo's girlfriend.
  • Santa Claus: Or in this show's case, Fish Santa Claus.
  • Series Continuity Error: Run, Oscar, Run, an episode that deals with the possibility of Oscar ruining his perfect attendance record, contradicts a major plot point in The Tale of Sir Oscar Fish, Oscar being tanks away during school.
  • Significant Name Overlap: In Milo vs. Milo, Milo sees a show starring another individual named Milo and assumes it's about him. When he sees the other Milo is clumsy, Milo decides to confront the other Milo to clear his name.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Bea is angered that Coach Salmons won't let her join the football team. She assumes it's for boys only; when she confesses to Coach Salmons about not letting her join, he reveals the real reason was because she wasn't wearing a helmet.
  • Shaking the Rump: Happens pretty often on the show, more so with Milo than anyone else.
  • Ship Tease: Bea and Oscar have a lot of this:
    • During "Fish Floaters", when the boys and girls are against each other in a contest for who could make a better float, when Oscar is caught by the girls, Bea lets him hang out with them.
    • The ending of "Fish Prom", Bea and Oscar sharing a dance at the Hokey Poke after a night gone awry.
    • "Camp Camp," Oscar cheering Bea up after Bea realizes that Brandon Bubbler isn't interested in just her.
    • "The Big Woo," which is mostly about Oscar and Bea figuring out their feelings for each other. The last shot before the credits is of them kissing, but is blocked.
  • Shout-Out:
    • To Donkey Kong and Super Mario Bros.; one episode has Oscar liken himself to a plumber, Bea to a princess, and their dilemma to a gorilla in a tank top throwing barrels at them.
    • "Hooray for Hamsterwood" has Milo saying that Pamela Hamster is the finest hamster actress of their generation, immediately followed by Pamela (on the TV show) saying, "Science class is so random!"
    • During "Two Clams in Love", Oscar accidentally paints himself blue while trying to run away from Clamantha; the next shot we see depicts Clamantha chasing Oscar in a Pac-Man-like fashion. She even stops to eat a cherry.
    • "Pamela Hamster Returns" mentions Hamster School Musical and Hamsters of Hamsterly Place.
    • "Just One of The Fish" has Oscar making the "Oh, Crap!" face.
    • "Adventures in Fish Sitting" has Ms. Lips' cat escaping the house when Bea was asked to look after him. So she disguises Milo as the cat. Following are three Garfield references.
    Ms. Lips': Haha! You can talk now!
    Milo: Uhh, yeah. Hey, can you make me some lasagna?
    • Also, in one episode, there was a brief homage/reference to Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers.
    • One episode had Milo call Oscar "Sticker Star".
    • During the chase at the end of "Brothers of a Feather", the shot of Bird-Mom twisting into the narrow gap is framed exactly like the Millennium Falcon doing the same thing in The Empire Strikes Back.
    • In "Labor of Love", Mr. Baldwin sings a parody of "Come Sail Away", titled "Please Say You'll Stay".
  • Significant Green-Eyed Redhead: Bea is shown to have green eyes in "Oscar is a Playa".
  • Somebody Doesn't Love Raymond: "Fishing for Compliments: The Albert Glass Story"
  • Special Edition Title: The theme song for "Pool Party Panic" is reanimated with the fish in human forms, and the title changed to "Friend Hooks".
  • Species Surname: Milo the Fish and Oscar the Fish.
  • Spell My Name With An S: Is it spelled "Piranhica" or "Pirahnica"? It's been spelled both ways on title cards.
  • Stalker with a Crush: Clamantha
    Clamantha: Love the new 'do, Oscar!
    Oscar: It's not a new 'do. Combs just stick to me and never let go.
    Clamantha: I'll be your comb...
  • Stealth Pun: The main hamster actress for Secret Teen Witch Hamster is played by a girl named Sabrina.
  • Stepford Smiler: Miss Lips is Type A. In a few occasions, we see her suddenly frowning or secretly bawling.
  • Suddenly Speaking:
    • After spending almost a season and a half silent, Nurse Fishington speaks for the first time in "Principal Bea" where she reveals she's a robot.
    • Jumbo, who was originally silent in his debut, speaks for the first time in "Milo Gets a Ninja".
    • Brandon Bubbler speaks for the first time outside of singing in "The Brandon Bubble".
  • Take That!: The Hamster Channel can be seen as a parody of the kidcoms of Disney Channel. Right down to the laugh track.
  • Temporary Love Interest: Exaggerated with Bea's boyfriends in "Doris Flores Gorgeous". She wasn't replacing her boyfriends rapidly because she's promiscuous, but rather because she thinks that's what high school girls are supposed to do.
    • Also, Angela to Oscar.
  • There Are No Adults: Milo and Oscar were explicitly said to have had no parents in Season 3, but an "Aunt Ida" is mentioned during Season 1. Only a handful of the cast have had at least one adult relative shown.
  • Third-Option Love Interest: Angela, to Oscar.
  • Those Two Guys:
    • Albert Glass and Jumbo Shrimp, also Milo and Oscar from the show's perspective.
    • Shelsea and Clamantha are a gender-inverted version.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Milo sure does love his apples.
  • Trailers Always Spoil:
    • A promo for the special episode, "We've Got Fish Spirit", already spoils a good chunk of the episode: Bea being able to compete in the cheer off.
    • The promos for "Just One of The Fish" implied that Bea would end up competing on the football team and that she was a completely different person from a student that had a strong resemblance to her.
    • The promos for "Principal Bea" spoiled Nurse Fishington's Robotic Reveal.
    • "Fish Prom" promos didn't explicitly show it, but viewers could easily tell that Angela and Oscar get in a fight and Bea ends up dancing with Oscar.
    • Before the last act of "Labor of Love", Disney showed a promo for the next episode about Baldwin having his class take care of his newborn babies, and that was before Mr. Baldwin gave birth to them. So much for continuity.
  • Verbal Tic: Shellsea
    Shellsea: Giiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiirlllllllllll.
  • Walk Into Camera Obstruction: In the theme song, Milo swims past the screen at the end of the first verse.
  • Wham Episode: "Principal Bea" reveals Nurse Fishington is a robot built by a Stickler so he wouldn't have to do his job. In the end, she becomes the new principal and Stickler leaves to find his own fun.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Bea and Oscar to Milo in the middle of "Dollars and Fish".
  • Worthless Yellow Rocks: Jocktopus is given money on his birthday and thinks it's just worthless paper. His girlfriend Piranhica knows what money is, but intentionally keeps him in the dark so she can keep it for herself.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Jocktopus.
    • He actually tosses Clamantha out a window (and onto a car) during "Fish Floaters".
    • And was about to beat up Bea in one episode until Oscar stopped him.
  • Yandere: In the episode "Fishing for Compliments: The Albert Glass Story", Bea becomes obsessed with Albert Glass because he doesn't like him.
    • He actually has blue hair as a human in "Pool Party Panic".
  • You Mean X Mas: Fishmas, of course.


Fish Hooks

Well, that's one reason to hang out after the last bell.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / ExplodingCloset

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