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Western Animation / Groove Squad

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Mackenzie (left), Chrissy (center) and Ping (right)
Original airdate: November 24th of 2002

Groove Squad is an animated Made-for-TV Movie that debuted as a part of the DIC Movie Toons series on November 24, 2002.

The titular group consists of three high school cheerleaders named Chrissy, Ping and Mackenzie (more commonly called "Mac"), who're best friends and are basically like your average teenaged girls—they're concerned with things like their looks, boys and popularity, and are also very focused on getting ready for an upcoming cheerleading competition. However, one day, while getting their hair done at a local salon, the girls get zapped by a jolt of electricity that gives each of them one special power:

With help from some valuable allies (namely their best male friend and their hairstylist, the latter of whom also happens to be a former secret agent), the girls use their newfound superpowers to become superheroines and defeat a power-hungry Mad Scientist bent on world domination (said scientist also happens to be the father of one of their fellow cheerleaders).

Groove Squad contains examples of:

  • The Alleged Car: The car that Zeke owns is shown to be this—it seems to work fine for the most part, but it has a tendency of spouting off a lot of exhaust when Zeke tries starting it. The car seems to improve after Adrienne installs some upgrades on it.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Adrienne (the trio's hairstylist), Mac and Fernando are this —
    • Adrienne's originally from England and appears to be black, but he has blonde hair, blonde eyebrows and blonde facial hair (which he was shown to have even in a flashback to when he used to work as an undercover spy for the Secret Intelligence Service in England), but it's entirely possible that his hair is dyed blonde, especially considering that he does work as a hairstylist (he also mentions that he spent some time working within the fashion industry, with people such as supermodels).
    • Mac appears to be African-American, but she has green eyes—since she's never shown with dark-colored eyes and it's never said if she wears colored contacts, it's possible that she has mixed ancestry. Mac's voice actress, Bettina Bush, is actually mixed race, with her father being black and her mother having Scottish, Cherokee and Polynesian ancestry.
    • Fernando's a Foreign Exchange Student (from some Spanish-speaking country), but he has blue eyes instead of dark-colored eyes—like with Mac, since he's never shown with dark-colored eyes and it's never said if he wears colored contacts, it's possible that he has mixed ancestry.
  • Betty and Veronica: Chrissy (the kind and friendly Betty) and Star (the mean and bitchy Veronica) are this to Fernando (the Archie), with Fernando ultimately choosing Chrissy over Star (though it was obvious that Fernando really only had feelings for Chrissy).
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: Oddly enough, Star turns out to be this for Dr. Nathaniel Nightingale (who's revealed to be her dad near the climax of the movie)—she also combines it with Daddy's Little Villain, Evil Redhead, Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter and The Ugly Guy's Hot Daughter:
    • Star's an attractive redhead who's arguably just as evil as her Mad Scientist-father (though much like Bonnie Rockwaller, Star's more "high school evil" than "regular evil"), who has a much cartoonier-looking appearance compared to most of the other characters in the movie. Also, assuming that, in addition to Star and her dad not having any kind of resemblance to each other, Dr. Nightingale is in fact Star's biological father, Star most likely takes after whoever her mother is in looks (Star's mom is never seen or mentioned throughout the entire movie).
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall (combined with Framing Device and Whole Episode Flashback): Almost all the movie consists of Chrissy (the story's narrator) explaining to the viewers how she, Ping and Mac got their superpowers and how they and Zeke got into their situation at the beginning of the film: fighting Flower Power (a trio of villainous hippies working for Dr. Nightingale), and how Zeke eventually got Bound and Gagged to a pole and the girls got tied up and suspended over a boiling pot of wax.
  • Brick Joke: During their first mission as the Groove Squad, the girls go up against a giant mutated worm, which Chrissy tosses away using her super strength, and questions if she should've thrown it further away. At the end of the movie, the worm crashes through the ceiling of the school's gym, effectively ruining the school dance in the process—Chrissy sees this and notes that she probably should've thrown the worm further away.
  • Comedic Underwear Exposure: Upset at how the girls are impressed with Fernando's looks, Zeke decides to show he also has muscles, forgetting he's not wearing anything but his underwear under his mascot costume.
  • Comes Great Responsibility: After the girls first gain their powers, Chrissy's excited about it and is eager to become a superheroine. However, the others are quick to point that becoming a superhero probably won't be as simple as Chrissy thinks, and Adrienne lampshades this trope when he points out that the girls have all a great responsibility now.
  • Cruel Cheerleader: Star appears to be the only true mean-spirited cheerleader on their squad.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Even if Dr. Nightingale's a power-hungry Mad Scientist bent on world domination and even if Star is arguably just as evil as he is, they really do seem to genuinely love each other, just as much as any other (non-villainous) father-and-daughter would.
  • Evil Is Petty: Both Star and her dad are shown to be this, more so in Star's case —
    • Even if Star is arguably just as evil as her dad, it's mostly when it comes to high school-related matters, such as trying take Chrissy's place as their school's head cheerleader and trying to get Fernando to choose her over Chrissy. Star even ends up going to her dad to get him to do something about helping her become her school's head cheerleader.
    • After Dr. Nightingale discovers that Chrissy, Ping and Mac are the Groove Squad, he sets a trap by kidnapping Adrien and his dog and forces Adrien to call Chrissy and her friends to get them to come to a fruit-canning warehouse. Dr. Nightingale does not only to prevent the Groove Squad from stopping his plans, but he also does it to help his daughter become the new head cheerleader at Bay City High School.
  • Gender-Blender Name: Ping, Mac and Adrienne are all examples of this:
    • While Ping's name can be used as a girl's name, it's more common as a boy's name.
    • Mac's more of a Tomboyish Name example—her real name is "Mackenzie" (which can be used as boy's name, but is much more common for girls), but she's only ever referred to as "Mackenzie" once, when Chrissy first introduces her friends to Adrienne.
    • The way that Adrienne's name is spelled is actually the way you'd spell it for a woman (the way you would spell it for a man would be either "Adrian" or "Adrien"). However, it's also a Meaningful Name in that Adrienne's name can mean "the dark one," which suits him because of his dark skin tone.
  • Genre Deconstruction: As Adrienne first points out, it won't be that simple for Chrissy and her friends to become superheroines after they first gain their powers—they have to learn to use their powers properly and learn to work together as a team of superheroines (especially since each of the girls only has one superpower). Chrissy, who was the most eager to become a superhero, soon realizes that being a superhero isn't as fun or glamorous as she imagined it to be. And as Chrissy and her friends realize, if they want to continue being the Groove Squad (which they do), they're going to have learn to be able to balance their normal lives and their newfound lives as superheroines.
    • To a smaller extent, the Triple Flip-cheerleading stunt (the one that Chrissy kept insisting on using) seems rather dangerous and nearly impossible to achieve—in fact, according to Star, when a rival squad tried doing that same stunt at a regional cheerleading competition a few years previously, half the cheerleaders ended up in traction at the hospital.
  • Goofy Print Underwear: Zeke and later Dr. Nightingale are shown to have underwear with heart prints.
  • Graceful Loser: The rival squad that Chrissy and the rest of the Bay City High School-cheerleaders go up against in the competition at the end of the movie don't seem too upset about losing—in fact, they run up to Chrissy and the BCHS-squad after their win and seem to congratulate to them, as well as seeming very impressed that they were able to pull off that cheerleading move Chrissy kept insisting on using throughout the movie (called the "Triple Flip").
  • In the Name of the Moon: They have multiple in the movie but the most common one being "Bring it on! Groove Squad!"
  • Intergenerational Friendship (combined with The Mentor): Adrienne, Chrissy's hairstylist, is this to Zeke and the girls—aside from having a good hairstylist/client-relationship, Adrien really takes it upon himself to help the girls learn to use and control their superpowers and, along with Zeke, helps to keep their newfound identities as superheroines a secret.
  • Invisible Parents: The only actual parent seen in person throughout the course of the movie is Dr. Nightingale, who just so happens to be Star's dad. Ping's parents are mentioned (but are never seen in person) shortly after she, Chrissy and Mac gain their superpowers—Ping gets worried about how her parents would react if they learn about her ability to fly.
    • The parents of Chrissy, Mac, Zeke and the twins, Stacy and Roxanne, aren't seen or mentioned throughout the entire movie.
    • Fernando's parents aren't seen or mentioned either, but since he's a Foreign Exchange Student, his parents are probably still living in whatever country Fernando's originally from while he himself is staying with a host family during his time in Bay City.
    • Adrienne's an adult and is obviously living on his own (away from his parents). Also, assuming that Adrienne's parents are still alive, they're probably still living in England (Adrienne's originally from England).
  • Limited Wardrobe: Pretty much all the characters in the movie are only seen in only two or three outfits throughout the entire movie. For example:
    • Chrissy, Ping and Mac are only seen in three different outfits throughout the movie: their cheerleading uniforms, their supersuits and the dresses they wear to their High-School Dance.
    • Outside of his mascot costume, the only outfit that Zeke is seen in is the tuxedo he wears to the dance with Ping.
    • Star, just like the Groove Squad, is seen in three different outfits throughout the film: her cheerleading uniform, the outfit she wears at the park when trying to steal Fernando from Chrissy, and the dress she wears at the dance.
    • Aside from their cheerleading uniforms, the only outfit that Stacy and Roxanne are shown wearing are the outfits they're seen in when they're with Star in that first scene at the park.
    • Fernando's only seen in three different outfits throughout the movie: his football uniform, the outfit he wears in that scene at the park, and the tuxedo he wears at the dance with Chrissy.
  • Minion with an F in Evil: Three (or two?) examples of this —
    • Stacy and Roxanne, a pair of identical twin sisters who're Star Nightingale's best friends/sidekicks, really aren't "evil" or "mean" like Star is—they seem like genuinely nice girls, but they're also very easily manipulated.
    • Larry, a Cyborg who is Dr. Nigthingale's main sidekick, is rather cowardly and not as intelligent as his boss, and really doesn't seem all that evil.
    • Very much averted with Flower Power, a trio of superpowered hippies who're Dr. Nightingale's other sidekicks—as shown at the beginning of the film, they don't seem to have a problem with fighting, hurting and potentially killing a group of teenagers.
  • Only One Name: Star and her dad are the only characters to have both their first and last names known—Adrienne's the one who initially refers to the Mad Scientist as "Nathaniel Nightingale." While Star's full name is never said out loud during the course of the movie, since Dr. Nightingale is revealed to be her dad, it can be assumed that her last name is also "Nightingale" (which is an actual last name, albeit not a very common one).
  • Ordinary High-School Student: Much like Kim Possible, the titular Groove Squad are still fairly normal teenage girls, being concerned with things like school, cheerleading, boys and their looks, but they also care about things besides that.
  • Pair the Spares: Unlike Chrissy (who has Fernando) and Ping (who has Zeke), Mac didn't have an established crush or love interest—in the end, Adrienne sets her up with Derek, a young friend/client of his who also attends Bay City High School and who also has a 4.0 GPA.
  • Power Perversion Potential: Upon learning that fruit smoothies (or, as it later turns out, any kind of fruit-based drinks) serve as fuel for her powers, Mac tests this by seeing through Zeke's mascot costume. He's upset for it.
  • Power-Up Food: A non-videogame example—for Chrissy, Ping and Mac to get into their Super Mode as the Groove Squad, they have to consume some kind of fruit-based drink, as the girls were drinking fruit smoothies when they got zapped by the jolt of electricity that ultimately gave them their superpowers in the first place. Zeke and girls discovered this when, while practicing cheerleading at the park, Zeke and Ping came back with some fruit smoothies, and the girls gain their powers back after drinking them.
  • Relationship Upgrade: Zeke, the mascot for Bay City High School and the closest male friend of the trio, and Ping become a couple in the end. This also appears to happen to Chrissy and her crush, Fernando, since they're shown together at the dance at the end of the movie.
  • Secret-Keeper: Zeke and Adrienne become this after the girls become superheroines—Zeke and Adrien are the only ones aside from Dr. Nightingale and Larry to know about Chrissy, Ping and Mac's superpowers and their identities as superheroines. Zeke in particular proves himself to be a valuable ally to the girls, despite not gaining superpowers like they do.
  • Serious Business: Cheerleading appears to be kind of a big deal in Bay City—according to Dr. Nightingale, most of Bay City was apparently at that cheerleading competition the Groove Squad and their fellow cheerleaders spent pretty much entire movie preparing for.
  • Signature Move: The Triple Flip. It not only helps gets the groove squad free and repowered,but is also the move that lets them win the cheerleading competition.
  • Useless Without Powers: Chrissy, Ping and Mac's only work when they've had their fruit smoothies (or any kind fruit-based drink), and they have to have a supply of fruit-based drinks on them so they'll be able to access their powers anywhere and at any time. Once the smoothies wear off, the girls' powers go away and they're back to being normal teenage girls (albeit still very athletically skilled).
  • Vague Age: It's never explained how old any of the characters are—Zeke must be at least sixteen, considering that he has his own car and is able to drive it without needing an adult in there with him and/or getting pulled over by a police officer.
    • The Groove Squad and the rest of the BCHS-cheerleaders are probably the same age as Zeke.
    • In the case of Fernando, he must be at least 16, since most foreign exchange programs for high school students require participants to be at least 16.