What happens when you're an animation studio executive who is a huge fan of Japanese Pop Music and really wants to see one of your favourite bands get more popular overseas? Well, first you get them to do the theme song for one of your upcoming shows. Maybe put some of their songs in a few episodes as well. Then, now that everyone is starting to get interested in who these musicians are, use that to justify making a fun little Band Toon.
Hi Hi Puffy Ami Yumi is a Cartoon Network original series based on the Real Life J-Pop group PUFFY.note Airing from November 2004 to June 2006, the show is very much a Widget Series, cataloguing the often bizarre adventures of the titular best friends/musicians and their manager Kaz as they travel around on a world tour. These can range from dealing with a deranged fan, to being possessed by the ghost of a dead drummer, to being dragged into forced labor in a third-world country, to time-traveling to the 1970s to become disco stars.
Produced for television by then Cartoon Network vice president Sam Register with the help of former Jellyfish member Andy Sturmer, who had previously worked with the real duo. The series was the only American television show at the time to be fully animated domestically, being done using Adobe Flash at Renegade Animation in California. Character design was done by Lynne Naylor, with her work garnering the show an Annie Award nomination. While the show did well enough in the ratings, Register's presence as the show's executive producer was arguably what kept it alive more than anything else. When Cartoon Network saw management changes in 2006, Sam Register was one of the executives that left the studio.note HHPAY ended production shortly after and its existence was unceremoniously scrubbed from CN's website. It is currently the only Cartoon Network show not to see all its episodes aired in the United States, be it television or streaming.
Tropes used include:
- And I'm the Queen of Sheba: In "Tooth Decay", a boy replies to Ami claiming that she and Yumi are the tooth fairy by snarking "And I'm the Easter Bunny". Ami doesn't get that he's being sarcastic.
- Art Evolution: The artwork noticeably got smoother beginning in season 2. The character designs were more streamlined as well.
- Abhorrent Admirer: Harmony is a non-romantic example. Ami and Yumi are both horrified by her obsession with them and her disregard for their privacy and personal space.
- Age Lift: Ami and Yumi are made into teenagers when their real selves were in their late 20s/early 30s. Also, Ami appeared to be the younger one—when in real life, she's a bit older than Yumi.
- Animesque: Not surprising for a show featuring J-Pop stars.
- Anime Accent Absence: Ami, Yumi and Julie. Subverted with Kaz and Atchan. There is the occasional use of honorifics, though.
- Ash Face: Has happened to Ami and Yumi in many episodes.
- Balloon Belly: Used nearly every time that either one or both of the girls overeat. This happened to them after their candy binge in "Taffy Trouble" and after eating all the sushi in "Rock N Roe". It gets weirdly averted, when Yumi is competing in some hot dog eating contests.
- Between My Legs: Of Ami in Ninjcompoop and Neat Freak.
- Bifauxnen: Many viewers who would have never heard of Puffy AmiYumi before (or even this show, for that matter) would think that Yumi is a bishie Goth.
- Big Eater: Kaz and Yumi in the cartoon. Ami and Yumi in the opening skits.
- Bigger on the Inside: It wouldn't look as such, but the Tour Bus is enormous. It gets lampshaded when Kaz tried to sell it with a claim of it having "thousands of rooms, some even we don't know about!".
- Bilingual Bonus: The characters sometimes use not only Japanese honorifics, but they also use words and phrases that pop up every now and then.
- Bland-Name Product: Stu-Pi-Doh Cards are a clear stand-in for Yu-Gi-Oh! cards.
- Blind Without 'Em: Kaz can't see well without his glasses.
- Braces of Orthodontic Overkill: Yumi in "Scowlitis"—except these braces, projected to make her smile, are impractical (highly magnetic and work just like lightning rods), deform her so her smile is half-Stepford, half-Slasher, eventually put her in a depression due to these... and then, become a sensation with fans.
- Brain in a Jar: Kaz's head is preserved in a jar in the Year 3000. God only knows why.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Characters occasionally break the fourth wall, such as Yumi commenting "This is a weird episode" in "Under the Hood".
- Butt-Monkey: All three main characters receive their own fair share, though Kaz takes the cake in this.
- Call-Forward: "Secret Origin" takes place when Ami and Yumi were children and at one point has Ami state that she loves riding the bus and hopes that when she's older, she and Yumi will ride a bus every day, calling forward to how she and Yumi travel in a tour bus when they're rock stars.
- The Cameo: Pinocchio makes an appearence inside the whale in "Rock N' Roe".
- Celebrity Toons: The main characters are essentially animated versions of an actual Japanese musical duo.
- Chimney Entry: In one episode, the two main characters need to get into a house to do tooth fairy work. They try entering through the chimney, but are intercepted by the kid living there, who mistakes them for burglars and throws them out.
- Cloudcuckoolander: Atchan isn't exactly all there, as the quote below indicates."Here's my card...oh wait. Stand back! I'll give you the card in lightning speed! NGINGINGINGING!"
- Collectible Card Game: Stu-Pi-Doh, an obvious spoof.
- Comic-Book Adaptation: There were 3 regular comic issues and the characters were also featured six times in Cartoon Network Block Party, all published under DC Comics.
- Conditional Powers: Yumi's ability to eat vast amounts of food (and horseshoes) is triggered when she gets incredibly bored.
- Corrupted Contingency: In "Home Insecurity", Yumi installs a new security system in her room to prevent Ami from using her computer. Unfortunately, Yumi set the computer to attack anyone who enters her room which the system interprets to include Yumi.
- Cowardly Sidekick: Kaz fits the bill on most occasions.
- Creator Provincialism: Hi Hi... is a show about a Japanese pop duo. Or so we're led to believe. The characters themselves say and do things easily identifiable with American Culture as all the writers and animators are from North America. They attempt to remind that Ami and Yumi are from Japan by having them speak in Gratuitous Japanese, use chopsticks to eat, obsess over sushi, and spend yen (even though there doesn't seem to be any rate of conversion).
- Cute Little Fangs: Yumi is sometimes depicted as such in her character design, mostly shown in some close-ups.
- The Cutie: Both the girls, but Ami even more so in terms of personality.
- Character Exaggeration: The titular duo are exaggerated versions of the actual people they are based on. Ami makes more sense, though.
- Dark Is Not Evil: The Talent Suckers are vampires, but are not bad guys.
- A Day in the Limelight: Minor Characters like Harmony and The Talent Suckers received their own episodes. Kaz and the cats frequently had their own Tom and Jerry-inspired shorts that were devoid of Ami and Yumi's presence.
- Deliberately Monochrome: The entirety of the episode "It's Alive!" is in black and white, primarily due to being an homage to Frankenstein (1931).
- Diegetic Soundtrack Usage: Near the end of "Dis-Harmony", Kaz sings parts of the theme song...badly.
- Disco Sucks: The episode "Disco Caper" has Ami and Yumi go back in time to the 1970's and end up being responsible for the disco fad going belly up. Evidently, the only reason disco was popular in the first place was because everyone's tastes in music were affected by getting concussed.
- Disney Acid Sequence: Almost the entire plot of one of the episodes is Ami and Yumi tripping off cheap, bad sushi.
- "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: Naturally with the cartoon being about them, the duo sing the theme song.
- Don't Try This at Home: At the end of one of the episodes, the Flash-animated Ami and Yumi warns kids that too much sushi is hazardous to your health. Of course, this is Truth in Television if you happen to consume a lot of sushi made with tuna, mackerel, yellowtail, swordfish and/or seabass.
- Early-Installment Weirdness:
- The seven-minute pilot has more than a few differences from the series, one of the most notable discrepancies being the absence of Kaz.
- The first season used Episode Title Cards, while seasons two and three would have the episode's title appear on a board that is shown in a live-action segment.
- Everything Is Online: "Home Insecurity", where Yumi's crazed security AI brings everything on the bus, including the fridge, toilet, toaster and her guitar, to life to kill her.
- Expressive Shirt: The Skull on Yumi's T-Shirt shifts expression to match her own.
- Extreme Omnivore:
- Yumi's opponent in a hot dog eating contest tried to sabotage her by putting metal horseshoes in her food. It works at first, but Kaz and Ami realize that Yumi will go into an unstoppable eating frenzy when she gets bored enough. Yumi ends up victorious in the contest.
- In another episode, the band get abducted by aliens that look like giant bananas. When they hook a mind-reading device to Yumi, we see that she is fantasizing about making a giant banana split out of them and devouring it.
- First-Name Basis: Or last name, if you place surnames first. The duo and their manager are only known by their given names. It was highlighted when Ami and Yumi tried to visit Kaz at the hospital and the receptionist asked for his surname. Neither Ami nor Yumi knew it.
- Four-Fingered Hands: Characters will often switch between four or five fingers per hand depending on the scene.
- Gonk: A lot of secondary male characters are a bit on the ugly side.
- A Good, Old-Fashioned Paint Watching: Is an actual Spectator Sport in this show.
- Goth: Yumi, though she is more of the "I Love My Chemical Romance" than the "I Recite Deep Depressing Poetry" variety.
- Gotta Catch Them All: The collection of cute animals figures as cereal freebies from "Collect All 5", which Ami is so determined to get them all at no costs.
- Gratuitous Japanese: When astonished, the girls will often say something in Japanese. Background songs are also frequently in Japanese.
- It helps that Janice Kawaye is a Japanese-American who speaks Japanese fluently. She also helped the Mexican-American Grey DeLisle with pronunciation.
- Greed: Kaz's defining attribute is greed for money Ami and Yumi earn from their concerts.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: Yumi, but it should be obvious, considering her dark personality.
- Half-Human Hybrid: The alien bananas turn Kaz into a literal chicken-man.
- Here We Go Again!:
- After going through a lot of trouble to get Bunny Huggles to complete her collection of Huggle Buddies in "Collect All 5", Ami then notices that Panda Pals cereal has 100 collectible pandas and starts an interest in collecting them.
- "Stop the Presses" has Ami and Yumi do whatever they can to find and get rid of every newspaper that features an embarrassing photograph of Ami. After their efforts are done, they end up having to do this again when someone photographs Ami while she's covered in manure and intends to have the picture published in tomorrow's edition.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: Ami and Yumi are pretty close for "best friends", but this is a kid's show.
- The production team's (now 404'd) blog once had a post featuring a drawing of the girls in a distinctly non-heterosexual passionate embrace. This was said to be inspired by the real-life Puffy's amused reaction to the show's implied homo-eroticism, asking why the showrunners were "writing them as gay." Of course, it also had a series of drawings involving Ami falling victim to an Alien chestburster which Yumi then dispatched with a knife, so it was quite clearly not a network-approved source of series information.
- This was actually toned down after season one, with the girls not hugging nearly as much, but the hints are still there, such as the two of them growing old together in the episode set in the future and each with a life dream list including starting a band with each other.
- Human Mail: Kaz attempts this to get back into the tour bus when the cats, Jeng Kang and Tekirai, lock him out. Kaz gets mailed to a bunch of other places courtesy of the cats until the package eventually returns.
- Hypno Pendulum: Ami attempts to use a pocket watch as one of these to try and hypnotize a bull in one episode. It works... until the bull breaks out of it and eats it.
- Hypocritical Humor: "Manga Madness"Ami: Thank goodness we're back in Japan, we can catch up on all the manga and anime we've missed.Yumi: Tell me about it. American cartoons are terrible! ...Oops. Just kidding.
- Incredible Shrinking Man: Ami and Yumi get shrunk after going through the dryer in "Small Stuff".
- Identity Amnesia: In "AmiAmi" Yumi gets amnesia and thinks she’s Ami after getting electrocuted by the microwave.
- Idol Singer: The title characters are teenage singers who are very popular, especially in their home country of Japan.
- Informed Attractiveness: Played for Laughs. King Chad from "In The Cards" is apparently the sexiest thing on two legs, to the point of making both Ami and Yumi fall in love with him the second they see him, with Ami calling him a "super hunk" and Yumi calling him a "bad boy". To the viewer, he appears to be a nerdy-looking teenager, with pale skin, a snub nose, freckles, buck teeth, a Jerkass personality and a single-minded obsession with a children's card game. Naturally, the plot of the episode revolves around the two fighting over him.
- In Name Only: The title of the show, and the occasional Insert Song, is really the only thing that has anything to do with the band.
- It's a Wonderful Plot: In "Yumi Goes Solo", Yumi wishes she never joined Puffy AmiYumi after having to do a bunch of work for it while Ami and Kaz go to a candy eating expo. She ends up dreaming of a world where she is a solo act, Kaz works for the cats, and Ami is a homeless Street Musician. Seeing them in misery makes her wish she had her friends again.
- Jeopardy! Thinking Music: Used very briefly in "Dis-Harmony".
- The gang of bikers from "Motor Psycho Mamas" love causing chaos and have little regard for anyone they hurt.
- Axel and Rod Skidmark from "Soap Box Derby" prefer to cheat to win races and don't learn their lesson after they lose. They're last seen stealing the winner's trophy and running away. It didn't help that the winner was a child that they picked on throughout the episode.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Yumi and Kaz are both prone to rude and selfish actions, but are just as often capable of doing nice things.
- Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: King Chad in "In The Cards" appears to have a nicer side, but instantly rejects Ami and smugly beats her in Stu-Pi-Doh!.
- Job-Stealing Robot: In "Robo-Pop", Kaz builds robots replacing our two titular rockstars.
- Lampshade Hanging: Frequently by the ever snarky Yumi:"Another chase scene? I thought we were a rock band."
- "Allergic" were Ami is suddenly allergic to Yumi. Kaz references how this plot was used on Gilligan's Island.
- Large Ham: Many of the characters voiced by Corey Burton in the show.
- Limited Wardrobe: Ami and Yumi are almost always depicted wearing the same clothes.
- Loads and Loads of Roles: Nathan Carlson has voiced nearly 100 male characters throughout the series.
- Logic Bomb: Causes Yumi's computer to go on a rampage.
- Loony Fan: Harmony, self-proclaimed "number one fan" of Puffy AmiYumi, tends to bother Ami and Yumi ceaselessly and comes off as a bit unhinged.
- Lost Him in a Card Game: "Bad Manager", Kaz bets Ami and Yumi in a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors.
- Magic Feather: "The Legend of Mei Pie" has Yumi learn that she doesn't need a special guitar to be a good musician.
- Mascot Mook: Although Jang Keng and Tekirai aren't technically Mooks, there were plush toys of them.
- Meat-O-Vision: "Tsunami Yumi". While lost at sea, Ami imagines Yumi as a giant sushi roll.
- Mirror Universe: "Evil AmiYumi" featured a parallel universe full of evil twins with evil beards.
- Money Fetish: Kaz loves money. Quite a few episodes revolve around him doing get-rich-quick schemes.
- Mouthflaps: The characters’ mouth movements are animated this way. Averted with the real Ami and Yumi in the live action sequences.
- Mukokuseki: Ami and Yumi are Japanese, but do not look it.
- Mushroom Samba: In "Rock n' Roe" where the girls eat cheap sushi, then start tripping balls. Complete with an And Knowing Is Half the Battle ending.
- My Nayme Is: Ami (Ah-Me) is often mispronounced as Amy (Ay-Me) in promotions and discussion.
- Neat Freak: Ami displays an obsession with making everything neat and orderly once, then never again in the appropriately named "Neat Freak".
- Nerds Are Sexy: Chad is a geek obsessed with the Stu-Pi-Doh! card game. Both Ami and Yumi have crushes on him.
- Nice Girl: Ami. Yumi is also this, to a lesser extent (otherwise, she's a Jerk with a Heart of Gold).
- Ninja: A magazine survey tells Yumi that "Ninja" is her destined career choice in "Ninjcompoop".
- No-Dialogue Episode: "Ikkakuju" doesn't have any dialogue.
- Not-So-Imaginary Friend: The Unicorn in "Ikkakuju" conveniently disappears whenever Ami tries to get Kaz and Yumi to see it, causing them to assume that Ami is lying to them and using the Unicorn as a scapegoat for her misdeeds.
- Not Quite Starring: The real Puffy AmiYumi only appeared in live action opening sequences, that make it clear that their accents would be too thick to understand for an native English-speaker anyway.
- One-Hour Work Week: In one episode, Kaz tells Ami and Yumi he's got enough time to coach a football team because their shows only last half an hour per week.
- Origins Episode: "Secret Origin" takes place when Ami, Yumi, and Atchan first met as children and explains why Atchan is the way he is today.
- Our Founder: in Ami Yumi 3000, when all of civilization is based on Puffy music, there's an enormous statue of the girls back-to-back in a signature pose in the middle of the futuristic city. (the Yumi statue's head has a wormhole over it)
- Our Vampires Are Different: The "Talent Suckers" suck not blood but talent but Kaz might beg to disagree...
- Out Of Control Popcorn: In the segment "Talent Suckers Return", the Talent Suckers tried making popcorn for the popcorn stand and put tons of kernels into the machine. Vlad forgot to plug it in and the arena was destroyed by all of the popped popcorn.
- Oven Logic: "Puffylicious". Amusingly, the souffle came out all right, but the oven itself melted.
- Packed Hero: The example in the description is used quite literally with Ami in the cereal factory in "Collect All 5".
- Paper-Thin Disguise: Ami and Yumi on occasion use disguises that are easy to see through.
- In "Cell Block Rock", they try to disguise themselves to avoid crowds using fake beards. Their manager Kaz mistakes them for tresspassers and has them both arrested.
- "House Unkeeping" begins with Ami wearing a T-shirt reading "Not Ami" and Yumi doing the same with a shirt reading "Not Yumi".
- Parody Episode: Doubled up "Willy Wonka" with that famous "I Love Lucy" episode in a New Job Episode.
- Pet Contest Episode: In "Kitty Kontest", Kaz enters Ami and Yumi's cats in a contest but turns out the cat contest isn't for a few months, so Kaz decides to enter the cats in a dog contest by pretending that they're dogs.
- Phoneaholic Teenager: Ami's habit of constantly using the phone in "Number, Please" drives Kaz crazy to the point that he confiscates the teenage rocker's phone.
- Portrait Painting Peephole: "Phantom of Rock" has a brief scene of Ami and Yumi walking past two portraits with moving eyes.
- The Power of Rock: The Power of Rock and Power of Friendship were used alternatively, if Rock solved the problem in the last short, Friendship would the problem this time.
- Prison Episode: "Cell Block Rock" has Ami and Yumi end up in prison when the fake facial hair they wear as disguises to avoid crowds get stuck and Kaz mistakes them for trespassers.
- Punny Name: The episode "Trouble with Mimes" had Ami and Yumi encounter a mime named Sy Lantz.
- Quintessential British Gentlewomen: The opening sketch for "Fan Clubs" features Ami and Yumi sitting at a table in fine dress drinking tea and biscuits, dubbed with British accents with a sophisticated style of speech while an autoharp plays in the background.
- Recurring Character: The duo's cats, Jang Keng and Tekirai.
- Recursive Canon: Animated Ami and Yumi see their live action counterparts on TV and don't recognize who they are in "Sitcom Yumi". A poster of the real duo also appears in "In Harmony's Way".
- Refuge in Audacity: "Anything is possible", indeed!
- Remember the New Guy?: Julie is introduced in the episode "Julie AmiYumi" as a former member of the band when none of the previous episodes so much as acknowledged her existence.
- Repurposed Pop Song: Songs by the duo are placed into various sections of the show. If you can understand Japanese, the placements of the song will seem rather strange.
- Ridiculously Cute Critter: Ami and Yumi's cats Jang Keng and Tekirai are very adorable.
- Right Behind Me: In "Scowlitis", Kaz at one point makes fun of the braces Yumi's wearing to correct her scowlitis before realizing that she's standing right behind him.
- Ring-Ring-CRUNCH!: "Save the Farm" shows us just how much Yumi doesn't like getting up early.
- Rock–Paper–Scissors: Their high-stakes games are Serious Business.
- Roger Rabbit Effect: in "Sitcom Yumi", the live-action Ami and Yumi sit on a couch with the animated Kaz, while the animated versions of the girls wonder who those two women are, and who would want to watch them.
- Scary Stinging Swarm: In "Record Breakers", a series of mishaps end with Yumi being stung by bees.
- Screen Projected Thought Machine: Used by the Banana Aliens in "Spaced Out".
- Sequel Episode: There are at least three episodes serving as a continuation of a previous episode.
- "Hired Help" is a continuation of the episode "The Oddyguard" and deals with Ami and Yumi trying to help their former bodyguard Wall get a new line of work.
- "B.C. Road Trip" is a follow-up to "Puffy B.C." where the prehistoric counterparts of Kaz, Ami, and Yumi try to find a way to make carrying their instruments around easier.
- "Manga Madness" has a sequel episode in "Manga Madness, Part II", where Ami and Yumi try to help their manga heroes Knoble Knight and Decibel Destoyer defear their nemesis Mr. Master.
- Series Continuity Error:
- Generally speaking, when there's an episode where it needs a shot of the interior of the tour bus, it's always different on each of the episodes.
- In the first episode:
- It's stated that Yumi has been petrified of squirrels since age 5. In season 2, not only can she fluently speak squirrel, but she was also president of the Squirrel Fan Club. As a whole there's not much, tying these episodes together.
- It's also been stated that Yumi has a tiny birthmark of Abraham Lincoln on her left foot—but when we do see her barefoot, it's absent.
- Kaz is shown to be a fan of watching paint dry in one episode, but in another episode, he rips the girls for doing the same thing.
- In the same case with Yumi's Abe Lincoln birthmark, Yumi stated that Ami also has a(n unseen) mark in the episode "Evil AmiYumi".
- Serious Business: "BUNNY HUUUGLLLLES!!!"
- The word "Renegade" pops up frequently, referring to she show's production studio, Renegade Animation.
- "Manga Madness II" had an Expy of Robot from Lost in Space show up, with the bad guy even using one of Dr. Smith's quotes.
- Read again the first part of the Our Founder entry above. Does that ring a bell?
- Atchan is dressed as a Kamen Rider, specifically V3's helmet.
- In "Small Stuff", Jang Keng screams like Tom the Cat.
- There is an episode that is a homage to Yellow Submarine.
- "Collect All 5" features a scene in which Ami stalks a little girl who has the one toy she wants. The shots of her climbing down the rocks towards the girl are a direct recreation of the scene from The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers where Gollum creeps towards Frodo and Sam whilst they sleep.
- Evil Ami and Evil Yumi from "Evil AmiYumi" have beards, much like the evil versions of Stan, Kyle and Cartman from the season 2 episode of South Park "Spooky Fish".
- Sitcom: Sitcom plots were used often. Sitcom tropes were later parodied in "Sitcomi Yumi".
- Banana Peel
- Catchphrase "Talking don't pay the rent, ne?"
- Drop-In Character
- Fantastic Comedy
- Retool: An unseen producer keeps trying change "reality" so as to better please an audience.
- Studio Audience
- Spin-Off Babies: The Mini-Puffs from the episode of the same name are infants made to look like Ami and Yumi, although technically the show itself is an example since Ami and Yumi are teenagers as opposed to adults like their real life counterparts.
- Squashed Flat: Happens a number of times on the show to various characters.
- Strapped to an Operating Table: The girls and Kaz find themselves in this situation (and have their brains probed by intelligent bananas from space) in the episode "Spaced Out!"
- Stage Magician: "The Amazing Kaz-Am" has Kaz try his hand at magic tricks.
- Subbing for Santa: "Tooth Decay" had Ami and Yumi tasked with filling in for the tooth fairy after Yumi accidentally injured him.
- Sugar Bowl: Ami dreams of living in a saccharinely sweet and happy world many times.
- Swallow the Key: Ami in "Arbor Day", after chaining her, Yumi, and Kaz to a tree. At the end of the episode, she expels the key on command by hiccuping.
- Time Travel: "Disco Capers", Kaz possess a time machine that takes them back to The '70s were they introduce the disco-induced natives to A Little Something We Call "Rock and Roll".
- It's all Artistic License – History when you remember that rock was introduced in The '50s, and became more what it's like today in the 1970s, what with the ever-growing branching into prog, glam, hard, plus the first bands of heavy metal and punk rock.
- Tim Taylor Technology: Yumi continues to give her amp exponential power until it causes a fuse to blow.
- Title Theme Tune: Most of the theme song repeatedly mentions the show's title.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: Ami loves the colour pink, cute cuddly animals and likes girly things like makeup. Yumi is pretty much the opposite of her.
- Tomboy with a Girly Streak: Yumi. Despite her tomboyish personality, she doesn't mind dressing up, going shopping with Ami and even admitted to Harmony that she has pictures of puppies dressed in cute flowers in her room.
- Too Dumb to Live: The Citizens of Dusty Gulch in "Showdown". They would rely on a chicken to protect them.
- Training Montage:
- Spoofed in "Ninjcompoop" were Yumi's skill do not improve with training. Set to one of the band's songs, ironically enough.
- It happened again in "Chow Down", an episode where Yumi had to win an eating contest against the reigning champion, Sauerkraut Malone. It literally spoofed Rocky by showing Yumi training against frozen sides of beef in a meat locker, just like Rocky Balboa did... but instead of punching them, she had to eat them. All of them. The girl has an appetite.
- Trees into Toothpicks: Edwin Blair runs a toothpick factory and, in "Arbor Day", intends to make toothpicks out of the tree whose splinter inspired him into the toothpick business by getting stuck on his finger years ago. After Ami and Yumi talk him out of it, he decides to leave the tree alone and tear down the rest of the forest.
- True Companions: Ami and Yumi are as close as best friends can be, and for all his jerkiness Kaz does have his moments few and far between, even going so far as to refer to himself as their "dysfunctional father figure".
- Überwald: In "Talent Suckers", the band visits Transylvania-Esque Slovakia and meets a deadly vampire band.
- Uncatty Resemblance: In Domo's debut episode of the same name, the titular Domo looks just like Kaz that everyone mistakes them for each other.
- Ungrateful Bastard: Team Teen is rescued by Ami and Yumi from a bully, and do they at least thank them for that? Nope. They're fired for using violence. But the two couldn't be happier.
- Unreadable Disclaimer: Kaz's contract is filled with lengthy subsections and loopholes that are a subject of many of the escapades the duo finds themselves in, but the real kicker is a section hidden under a flap and written in Russian saying that he reserves the right to sell the band.
- Vague Age: The accurate age for the characters are never given, although Word of God has established that Ami and Yumi are teenagers (they both appear to look around 16 years old).
- Whole-Plot Reference: "The Golden Fleas" is loosely based on The Odyssey.
- Wolf Man:
- Kaz becomes a werewolf from abusing a hair tonic in "Were-Kaz".
- In an issue of Cartoon Network Block Party, Kaz turns into something akin to the Tazmanian Devil after eating a glob of wasabi.
- Your Mom: In "Trouble with Mimes", Yumi and Kaz are at one point dressed up like mimes to fix Sy Lantz' house. Yumi responds to being told that mimes aren't supposed to speak by making some gestures. Ami irately replies with "That's not a nice thing to say about my mother".
- Your Television Hates You: In "Yumi Saves Kaz", Yumi's television viewing is ruined by seeing Kaz appear to voice his praise for her saving his life regardless of what channel she flips to.