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You and me will always be tight
Family every single day and night~
Even when you start acting like a fool
You know I'm loving every single thing you do~
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The Proud Family is an American animated comedy series created by Bruce W. Smith that aired on the Disney Channel from 2001 to 2005. The show is notable for being the first cartoon to feature an African-American family in the main role◊ , and was the first Disney Channel Original animated series, being created specifically for the channel rather than ABC's One Saturday Morning block or First-Run Syndication. It also has the distinction of being the first Disney series not produced by WDTA, being made instead at Smith's Jambalaya Studios.

The series centers the titular Proud family, with most plots focusing on Penny Proud, the family's 14-year-old teenage daughter who often butts heads with her overprotective parents while trying to assert her independence. Other members of the family include manchild and failing snack food entrepreneur father Oscar, loving yet controlling breadwinner mother Trudy, one-year-old twin siblings, brother BeBe and sister CeCe, and her paternal grandmother, "Suga Mama". While the show generally gave off a low-key vibe similar to most sitcoms while dealing with plots about peer pressure or racism, it wasn't afraid to get strange; the entire town in which Penny lived was ruled by a basketball-obsessed businessman named Wizard Kelly, and Penny and family occasionally encountered supernatural beings, such as an evil genie in the form of Today weatherman Al Roker.

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Initially running for 52 episodes over the course of two seasons, the series ended with a Made-for-TV Movie entitled The Proud Family Movie. In it, Penny and the Proud Clan have to stop the evil scientist descendant of George Washington Carver from unleashing peanut humanoid clones upon the world. Like we said, the show could get weird.

Most of the show remained out of syndication for some time before being released on iTunes, then, in January 2020, on Disney's streaming service Disney+.

In August 2019, shortly after Smith inked an exclusive development deal with Disney, Tommy Davidson (voice of Oscar Proud) revealed that the show would be returning for a third season on Disney+. In February 2020, Disney+ confirmed that the rest of the family's actors would return for the revival, now titled The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder.

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Also has the "Just For Fun" Drinking Game.


This series provides examples of:

  • Abusive Parents: Suga Mama to Oscar, albeit in a "tough love" kind of way. She loves him enough to help him in a wrestling match.
  • The Ace: Rene in the episode "There's Something About Rene..."
  • Actually Pretty Funny: In-universe example. In "Behind Family Lines", Oscar and Trudy's family have a football match, and Oscar describes how it was pretty funny when Suga Mama tackled Trudy's mother. Even Trudy's dad gets in and says "...Actually that was pretty funny."
  • All Just a Dream: The majority of the Black History Month episode "I Had a Dream".
  • Ambiguously Gay: Michael, although he falls more into a Camp Straight category.
  • Animated Outtakes: The Stinger on "The Legend of Johnny Lovely" is this.
  • Animation Bump: The first three episodes have some awkward animation, with bad lip syncing and characters floating around sometimes. The fourth episode's animation is noticably more fluid and the words match lip movement. It doesn't even stay consistent from this point. For example, compare the animation from the Season Two episode "I Had A Dream" to the next episode ''"I Love You Penny Proud. The former has the standard animation the series has had, while the animation in the latter is noticably different.
  • Applied Phlebotinum: Oscar's Proud Snax, in the later seasons.
    • It Runs on Nonsensoleum: Oscar is capable of lighting a fire without using matches or any other kind of lighter, because (as Suga Mama always says) his ankles are so rusty he can start a fire with them. This is demonstrated in "Camping Trip", where circumstances have forced Oscar and Felix to separate from the rest of their camping entourage and scale a mountain to find help after a flash flood occurs.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: In one episode:
    Oscar Proud : You cant hurt anything that old! Suga Mama survived some of the greatest disasters in the history of mankind: The Hindenburg, the Titanic, that meteor that took out the dinosaurs and 30 years of "The Jefferson's" reruns.
  • Art Shift: The episodes by Liquid Animation are animated in Flash, while the rest of the series is done traditionally.
  • Asian and Nerdy: The Chang triplets. However, they are always at the coolest events because their parents know someone or happen to be indirectly in charge of the events in question.
  • Attack Animal: Especially in "Hooray for Iesha", when the police dogs try to attack Penny and her friends.
  • Audible Gleam: The glow-in-the-dark Thingy dolls in "Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thingy, Baby".
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Oscar and Trudy may get into disagreements with each other, but there are a few scenes that show they do love each other deep down.
  • Baseball Episode: "Suga Mama's Believers".
  • Beauty Mark: Penny has one. It's eventually revealed that she pencils it in.
  • Being Evil Sucks: Penny finds this out the hard way when she decides to make it big by performing a Face–Heel Turn and then publishing a tell-all about being a bad girl – she alienates everyone, disappoints her teacher to the point of tears, and gets sent to boot camp. She escapes, but the Gross Sisters won't shelter her, she misses her family (who she knows won't take her back), and she has nowhere else to go, so she decides to reform and get back to normal life.
  • Big Beautiful Woman:
    • Reverend Heygood's wife, Patrice.
    • Marisol and Minerva in "Who You Callin' a Sissy?"
  • Big Damn Heroes: In the Halloween episode, Penny does this three times. The first time was saving the town from a meteor. The second time was her saving her family from the ghost that haunted her house and family.
  • Bilingual Bonus: LaCienega's in Spanish is "the bog/swamp".
  • Bittersweet Ending: Penny befriends a Muslim girl whose family is every bit as dysfunctional-yet-loving as hers. However, their house is vandalized, complete with graffiti saying "Go back home, towelheads!" (changed to "Go back to your country!" in reruns) Although Penny delivers a moving anti-racism speech at a school assembly, the vandals are never caught.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: Penny and LaCienega (brunettes), Dijonay (blonde) and Zoey (redhead).
  • Bolt of Divine Retribution: In "The Camp, the Counselor, the Mole and the Rock", Oscar inadvertently volunteers to fund the church $2,000 but is struck by lightning when he smugly refuses to do so.
  • Boot Camp Episode: In "Pulp Boot Camp", Penny becomes a bad girl and is sent to a boot camp style reformatory.
  • Bowdlerization: In the aforementioned episode about Islamophobia, the spray-painted message was changed to "Go back to your country!"
  • Bully Magnet
    • This becomes deconstructed with Michael. He was a target of bullying due to him being Camp Straight. He ends up getting fed up and rages at his tormentors.
    • Averted with Oscar, as he is just a victim of slapstick and bad luck. You would think Oscar was this in his middle and high school days, but he was the bully.
  • But Not Too Black: Trudy is much lighter skinned than the rest of her family.
  • Butt-Monkey: Things never seem to go Oscar's way, although sometimes he does deserve the bad stuff that happens to him. A recurring example of this is that when ever the family gets invited to anything, he isn't included. In "Wedding Bell Blues," for instance, Oscar is the only one who doesn't trust Sugar Mama's new boyfriend, and everyone gives him grief over it. But for once, Oscar turns out to be right, for a totally different reason.
  • By the Lights of Their Eyes: The moment Penny turns out the lights in "Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thingy, Baby".
  • Canine Companion: Puff the poodle to Sugar Mama
  • Cassandra Truth: Oscar is always telling the truth about the talking baby...but nobody believes him.
  • Catchphrase:
    • Oscar usually shouts "Trudy!" when he's about to endure some slapstick.
    • Oscar and Felix's joyous exclamation: "Yeah–yeah!"
    • Peabo likes to ask Oscar "Remember what happened last time?"
  • Celebrity Star: Al Roker, Lou Rawls and Smokey Robinson and several others make appearances as themselves. Roker appears in two episodes.
    • Note that in his two appearances, he's evil.
  • Christmas Episode: It was about Christmas AND Kwanzaa!
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Penny's friends. This is primarily done with Dijonay, while LaCienaga doesn't acknowledge her as a friend (hence it not counting) and Zoey ends up going with the majority due to her nature.
  • Comic-Book Time: Penny and her friends are fourteen and in middle school during the series.
  • Company Cross References: One of many, many Disney cross-references. In one of the earlier episodes, Oscar explains that an incident with a fish at a restaurant left him so scared of fish that he had to watch The Little Mermaid with his hands covering his eyes.
  • Couch Gag: During most episodes' Title Sequence, Oscar opens and closes the door on Penny's friends, one or two other people relevant to the episode, and then Suga Mama, who opens the door and forces her way in anyways.
  • Credit Card Plot: Penny gets a credit card and it talks to her. And it's voiced by Steve Harvey!
  • Crossover: With Lilo & Stitch: The Series.
  • Curse Cut Short: The episode where Penny joins the football team opens with Penny and her friends scoring a touchdown against a group of boys.
    Cheerleaders: We're girls! We're bad! We kicked those brothers'- *roll opening credits*
  • Dark Skinned Blonde: Dijonay. Given that she's African-American, it can be assumed that she probably dyed her hair blonde.
  • Deadpan Snarker: The majority of the cast, but Papi is a standout.
  • Depending on the Writer: LaCienega is sometimes a normal Alpha Bitch towards Penny...but there are other times where she's actually friendly to her. Likewise, Dijonay's own jerkass behaviour depends strongly on the writer.
  • Digital Piracy Is Evil: Illegal file-sharing is an addiction, kids!
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?:
    • "Who You Callin' a Sissy?": Michael gets called a sissy. He has a rather harsh coach dad who's obviously ashamed of how his son acts and doesn't want to be acknowledged as Michael's dad in public.
    • "The Legend of Johnny Lovely" features a mysterious boy named Johnny Lovely, who teaches all the kids to be kind and love one another. The authority figures promptly run him out of town, but he leaves behind his message in a book.
    • The Kwanzaa Episode, "Seven Days of Kwanzaa", featured a homeless couple named Joseph and Margaret. Although Joseph is an out-of-work construction foreman who proves he's good at construction when he puts together the twins' new jungle gym.
  • Double Standard: Violence, Child on Adult: In "Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thingy, Baby", a group of toddlers beat up Oscar and nobody tries to call for help. Imagine the reactions if many adults ganged up on an infant.
  • Downer Ending: A lot of episodes had pretty depressing endings. Such as when the songs available for downloading on the Internet wind up making a man's CD store close down, and it ends with him sobbing while closing up for good. Or when Suga Mama finds out the man she was going to marry had Alzheimer's and was taken away from her.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Thingy makes an appearance in "A Hero for Halloween" as BeBe and CeCe's Halloween costumes before being officially introduced in the next episode, "Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thingy, Baby".
  • Election Day Episode: In "Election", Penny makes a campaign to win an election as student body president running against Wizard Kelly's son. Penny has some difficulty in the campaign (such as being three points behind... undecided) in which one of her friends (who is also working on her campaign) went so far as to orchestrate a Watergate-style break-in.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: The Gross Sisters do care for each other.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: The Gross Sisters refuse to house Penny after she escapes from boot camp, figuring that while they're bullies, the fact that Penny was sent to boot camp makes her a hardened thug.
  • Everybody Cries: In "Tween Town", all the kids do this when Penny wished every parent in the neighborhood away and they all miss having them around.
  • Everybody Laughs Ending: The episode "A Star is Scorned" ends with Trudy, Oscar, & Suga Mama laughing.
  • Everything Sounds Sexier In Spanish: LaCienega's grandfather, Papi, would insult Suga Mama in Spanish as she unwittingly swooned to his every word.
  • Exact Words: In the episode “Hip Hop Helicopter,” Dijonay brags about how cool her cousin Bethany is. Then when Bethany gives them a ride and drops them off randomly on a sidewalk, Penny asks Dijonay why Bethany dropped them off randomly if she was “cool.” Dijonay just retorts “she’s cool, we’re not.”
  • Expy: Some of the characters resemble those in Bébé's Kids, Bruce Smith's directoral debut.
    • Nubia Gross resembles LaShawn.
    • Sticky resembles Khalil.
    • The Red-Nosed Baby resembles and sounds like PeeWee.
    • Sugar Mama seems to bear a resemblance to Madea.
    • Trudy resembles Gina.
    • Retroactively, Dr. Facilier and Mama Odie from The Princess and the Frog, both of whom Smith was the supervising animator for, could be Oscar and Suga Mama's distant relatives.
  • Extraverted Nerd: Myron. Suga Mama calls him "Urkel" at one point, a reference to another Extroverted Nerd, Steve Urkel of Family Matters. note 
  • The Faceless: "Wizard" Kelly is never shown from the neck up.
  • Fair Weather Friend: Penny's friends would ditch her fast, when things get tough, or they want to do something else than what she had planned.
  • False Friend:
    • Dijonay especially but Penny's other friends at times as well. Even Zoey.
    • In "A Star Is Scorned", Penny becomes a famous singer leaving her friends behind. Wizard Kelly pays a bunch of kids to be her fake friends but when Penny admits she misses her old friends Suga Mama tells her she's better off with out them, especially Dijonay. "Especially that Dijonay girl, she's faker than your fake friends."
  • Fancy Camping: Oscar takes his family out camping using a fairly state-of-the-art RV, but their rich neighbors, the Boulevardezes, use a massive collapsible mansion.
  • Fat and Skinny: Felix and Oscar.
  • Fat Bastard: Subverted big time with Penny's "date" Carlos, a very fat boy she reluctantly pairs with in the amusement park after her friends pair up with their more attractive partners. Much to her surprise, Carlos proves to be a kind and intelligent individual who actually rescues Penny's siblings, BeBe and CeCe, from a speeding roller coaster. To drive the point home, it's revealed her friends' partners ditched them for prettier girls after getting wet in a water ride.
  • Four-Girl Ensemble: Vain Alpha Bitch Lacienega (a sexy one), loud and aggressively flirtacious Sassy Black Girl Dijonay (a tomboyish one), sweet and impressionable Shrinking Violet Zoey (a sweet-naive one), who's constantly caving into peer pressure by the aforementioned girls, and Penny, the caring and polite Nice Girl title character who tries to keep the peace.
  • Friction Burn: Oscar sets his hand on fire while trying to snap. A few seconds prior, a kid warned him about trying to snap because his skin was so dry.
    • Similar, while in the middle of a Macho Disaster Expedition he remembers how his mother always said his ankles were ashy they could start a fire, so he tries it—and it works!
  • Fun with Subtitles: In "Spelling Bee", Oscar physically messes with his own onscreen subtitles.
  • Funny Background Event: In "The Legend of Johnny Lovely", while Penny and Trudy are in the house discussing Penny being a debutante, just behind Penny is the window where Suga Mama can be seen fighting against the strong wind.
  • Genki Girl: Dijonay is super enthusiastic and very bouncy. She always sets the mood up with her enthusiasm.
    • Zoey is also this, too. She is very Adorkable, cheerful, bubbly, sweet, agreeable, helpful and excitable, and it's very hard to get her angry.
    • Penny herself is also this, too. She's a Sassy Black Woman and very energetic. Which makes sense, because in "She's Got Game", her energetic nature seems to have ended her up in football.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: They managed to have some pretty serious stuff into a children's cartoon (e.g. racism, prejudice, sexual exploitation of female minors in the entertainment industry, corporate corruption in business and the music industry, juvenile delinquency, divorce and its effect on children, gay bashing, etc.). Such as "Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thingy, Baby", where Penny believes her dad is having an affair with an old colleague, or in "Wedding Bell Blues", when Oscar flat-out accuses a man of being a gigolonote .
    • This remains one of the few Disney cartoons ever to use the word "pimp".
    • "Penny Potter" has a scene in a movie theater, and it was apparent that the film in the background was Swordfish, on that one infamous scene with Halle Berry reading a book. And the animated series scene cuts away right as Halle starts to move her book. Let me repeat: they referenced a Best Known for the Fanservice moment in a children's cartoon.
    • In "Camping Trip", while Oscar is driving his trailer, he speaks into a walkie-talkie:
      Oscar: The XYL Is PMS...ccccc cmon!!!
      Trudy: What did you just say?
    • When the girls give Zoey a makeover, Dijonay stuffs a pillow down the back of her skirt to pad it out.
    • In "A Star Is Scorned" LaCienega calls Penny "a real wee-atch" which is easily misheard as the word it's intended to be. The actual "B Word" was thought to be said in the TV Movie, but it's a mishearing of "pigeon".
  • The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry: Trudy and Diana.
  • Halloween Episode: "A Hero for Halloween" – slightly unusual in that it doubled as a Superhero Episode.
  • Historical Longevity Joke: Oscar claims that Suga Mama survived the meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs.
  • Honest John's Dealership: The Gross Sisters specialize in these kinds of schemes.
  • Hostility on the Set: An In-Universe example happens in the episode “Hooray for Iesha” when Ishea’s actress is rude and nasty to not only Penny, but the other actors.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Nubia always mentions the size of Penny's forehead yet her forehead is twice as big.
  • I Ate WHAT?!: One episode involves Suga Mama's lemon squares becoming massively popular to the point of ending up on Oprah. This is the part where the whole world discovers that when she says she "puts her foot in it", she means it literally. As in sticks her foot in the batter. The audience promptly starts hacking.
  • I Feel Guilty; You Take It: LaCienega and Agatha enter an American Idol-style Music Reality Show, sponsored by Wizard Kelly, LaCienega, being prettier than Agatha, wins due to a fix by Wizard Kelly, "Beauty sells, ugly repels, y'all" Penny finds out and tells LaCienega that if she doesn't make things right, she'll have bad karma. LaCienega gives the prize to Agatha, who, in turn, shares it with her citing fairness.
  • Improvised Lockpick: In "Thelma and Luis", when Suga Mama and Penny rescue Papi from an okra farm masquerading as a retirement home, they find him in a locked cell. Dijonay fails to unlock the cell with her hairpin so Suga Mama uses her long toenail to pick the lock of the cell.
  • Informed Kindness: Dijonay reunites with her old friend LaCienega for the first time in years. Dijonay tells her current best friend Penny that LaCienega is the best person ever, but LaCienega only proceeds to do nothing but selfishly disrespect Penny. Penny calls Dijonay out on her judgement saying that it's possible her old friend has changed, but Dijonay doesn't see any of it.
  • Ink-Suit Actor: Some of characters look a great deal like their voice actors, Oscar in particular.
  • Insane Troll Logic: Oscar tries to tell Penny that she can't date until after she's married. This makes no sense because dating usually comes before marriage.
  • It Is Pronounced "Tro-PAY": "It is pronounced Pen-NAY!"
  • I Was Quite a Looker: Suga Mama. She returns to this after dieting for her wedding, looking as she did 50 years ago but with white hair and glasses. Once she eats real food again, however, she returns to her normal shape.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Oscar.
    • Suga Mama has her moments as well-as mean as she is to Oscar and as crabby as she can be, she really does love her family as she'll help Oscar or her other family members whenever their in trouble (plus she even helped him with his business once).
  • Jerkass: For a family-friendly show, there are a lot of unlikable characters here.
    • Too many to count – every character has their jerkass moments. Heck, even sweet Zoey and the wonderful Mama-Trudy. Dijonay really takes the cake: she constantly uses Penny, and ditches her at the drop of a hat, yet when Penny does something wrong in the friendship, then Penny is a flat out horrible friend. Sometimes Dijonay even gets away with her jerkass-ness. Normally, a girl with Sass is awesome... but Dijonay averts that concept most definitely!
  • Jerkass Genie: For some reason, Al Roker is depicted as such, complete with a demonic laugh. He's not just a weatherman but he's also a wish fulfiller.
  • Kent Brockman News: Marsha Mitsubishi.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: A nice example happens to Dijonay. In "Adventures in BeBe-Sitting", she ditches Penny to babysit her brothers and sisters while she leaves for a concert. However, the security sees she has fake tickets the Gross sisters gave her earlier, and when Penny arrives in a limo by the same band who's playing at the concert, she gets in for free along with Lacienega, Zoey and the Chang Triplets... except Dijonay, who her siblings and Penny say they don't know. Subverted in that she takes her back, but only to be the person that Penny can't trust.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: This happens once with Dijonay, in "Poetic Justice", when Penny encourages her to use cheerleading chants to help her get started writing spoken word poetry.
    Dijonay: Rip rip ree! Kick 'em in the knee! Rip rip rass! Kick 'em in the- (beat, realizes what comes next) ...other knee.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Pretty much everyone on this show, except for the few occasions where they dress up.
    • Lampshaded in one episode, the girls rip off their normal outfits and have new ones underneath, but Penny still has her usual outfit underneath. She then tries a couple more times, with the same results, until she ends up quickly ripping off a lot of the same outfit until she finally gets to the new one. The Credit Card Plot episode even made fun of this where her mother bought her a bunch of copies of the same outfit.
  • Literal Genie: Al Roker. Yes, that Al Roker. However, the wishes he grants Penny always blow up in her face.
  • Lovable Alpha Bitch: While LaCienega was originally a full-fledged Alpha Bitch in the Pilot Episode and antagonized Penny, by the second episode she's part of the group rounding out the Four-Girl Ensemble. Occasionally they'll acknowledge that they're not really friends, Depending on the Writer.
  • Makeover Montage: "Makeover"; where Olay, the biggest of the Gross Sisters, gets a makeover and becomes popular.
  • Mistaken for Racist: In "Romeo Must Wed", Penny developed a crush on Kwok while rehearsing for their school's production of Romeo & Juliet. After a while, Kwok's parents, the Wongs, politely asked Oscar and Trudy that they not allow Penny and Kwok to see each other anymore. While Trudy remained civil in her inquiry, Oscar immediately jumped to conclusions, thinking that the Wongs didn't approve of their son having a relationship with Penny because she wasn't "good enough" for them. This prompted both Oscar and Mr. Wong to imply the other was a racist. It turns out the real reason was that Kwok had an arranged bride, who was coming to town for a visit.
  • Named After Somebody Famous: Peabo, named after American R&B and soul singer-songwriter Peabo Bryson.
  • New Transfer Student: The Russian Sergei, to whom Zoey is attracted.
  • No Ending: Near the end of "She Drives Me Crazy", Suga Mama gets in another car accident and is suddenly sitting at home watching TV after losing her license again.
  • Off-Model:
    • Penny's skin color tone varies throughout the first season (It's quite noticeable in that season's flash animated episodes).
    • When she's wearing shoes, LaCienega's feet are about the same size as the other girls', but when she's shown barefoot in "Love Thy Neighbor" her feet are huge. This is actually invoked, as she was wearing the shoes to hide her feet.
    • One of Penny's classmates during "I Had a Dream" changes races constantly. It is particularly jarring as it happens during part of the episode that takes place in 1955, and the students are still separated by race in the classroom. So the switches make it seems that a black student is sitting among the the white students when it is previously stated (and seen) everyone is separated.
    • There is one where Papi is deliberately animated Off-Model, when an actor was put in place of the real Papi to provide the illusion of a resort. Suga Mama immediately notices that Papi's feet aren't ridiculously huge.
  • Once Done, Never Forgotten: Oscar will never live down losing the basketball match to Wizard Kelly.
  • Operation: Jealousy: Dijonay tries this in "Surf and Turf" by dating Duke to make Sticky jealous.
  • Panty Shot: Penny has one in an episode where she is hanging by her knees from an aircraft rope ladder.
  • Parental Favoritism: Suga Mama likes her older son, Bobby, more than she does Oscar.
  • Pest Episode: In "Don't Leave Home Without It", the B-story involves Oscar trying to get rid of a mouse in their home. Instead of paying an exterminator to get rid of the mouse, he and Felix try to do it themselves, but it doesn't end well and they ended up spending more money than what the exterminator offered.
  • Pet the Dog: The Gross Sisters in "The Party". They don't show up to torment Penny even further about how almost nobody is at her party and is instead at Lacieniga's. They legitimately came to have fun and act polite. They don't ask Penny for anything at the party. Similarly, they're shown that they care for each other.
  • Positive Discrimination: Averted. Not only are the Prouds just as insane as any other animated family, but there's also an episode where Penny dates a seemingly angelic boy in a wheelchair, only to realize he's a total prick who uses his disability to get his way.
  • Post-Treatment Lollipop: Played with; when the family takes the babies to get their shots, Doctor Payne receives them with lollipops. When Oscar asks about the shots, the doctor explains that the lollipops ARE the shots. He then take notice that Oscar himself is missing a shot, but as an adult he doesn't get a lollipop substitute.
  • Pretty in Mink: Penny's aunt Diana is always seen wearing a fancy green fur coat. Even when playing football.
  • Prince and Pauper: In "Monkey Business", Mariah Carey's pet monkey, François, and Oscar's Mr. Chips had this forced onto each other when Oscar, while distracted by Carey's presence at the vet's office, threw an injured Mr. Chips into a sick room that was already occupied by Carey's monkey (who was sick due to eating Proud Snacks). Things go uphill for Mr. Chips (who is mistaken by Carey for her pet), and downhill for her pet, with the latter experiencing something close to slave labor regarding meals, and later having its piano playing skills exploited for cash. Things end up back to normal after the pet finds Mr. Chips and takes back his identity forcefully and returns to his rightful owner, and Chips to his.
  • Rage Against the Author: Penny performs this at the end of the Hilarious Outtakes reel in "The Legend of Johnny Lovely", when she yells at Bruce Smith to draw her a dressing room, where she can go sulk. He draws a trailer for her, only for her to demand a bigger dressing room. Bruce draws one big enough to fill a one-story building, which Penny promptly skates inside.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • In "E-Z Jackster", Penny is used as a pawn by new boy Mega to infect the whole world with Mega’s music-sharing website. Everybody ends up using the website to download music illegally. These results in Penny being under arrest and record sales going down drastically. The local record store also goes out of business, and the manager ends up firing Penny and Dijonay as a result for their actions.
    • In “Crouching Trudy, Hidden Penny", the kids training at the advanced karate school are promised that they will earn a black belt in one day. When Penny thinks of transferring to that program, Trudy becomes suspicious of it, and wonders how someone can earn a black belt on one day. Trudy then rightly refuses to allow Penny to take the courses and makes her stay at her present karate school. It turns out that at the advanced karate school, the students are taught trends that usually appear in martial arts films. These includes doing mid air action poses, breaking already-broken wooden boards, and faking hits on someone. This “training” doesn't make them black belts as shown in the end when they hilariously lose the karate competition against Penny and the other karate students who actually took the time to learn and practice their skills. Moral of the episode: people don’t become pros at certain hobbies overnight, and constant practicing and dedication to hobbies is what will get you to be a pro at them.
    • A Played for Laughs example is in "Wedding Bell Blues", when Suga Mama signs up for a quick weight loss program with Dr. Payne in preparation for her wedding with Clarence. Suga Mama does end up losing the weight and looks like a completely different person. Then after the wedding (well, Suga Mama didn't get married due to Clarence having Alzheimer's), she takes a small bite of the wedding cake, only to instantly gain back the weight she lost. Moral: Going on crash diets & exercise plans usually backfire on you (your metabolism comes to a halt) in the long run.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: There was actually some debate because Papi looked "too white" to be Hispanic. It's no secret LaCienega counts as Hispanic (she and Sunset are darker skinned than Felix, who's tan) but some assumed that Felix was half Hispanic, and that his mom was. However, it's fully possible for Papi to be white but still be Hispanic, there are plenty of Hispanics who can be considered white. Heck, just look at Guillermo del Toro.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Recurring characters Peabo, Duke and Miss Hightower materialize out of nowhere and are already friendly with the main cast on their first appearances in "Poetic Justice", "Camping Trip" and "The Legend of Johnny Lovely".
  • Running Gag:
    • Oscar's "rivalry" with the talking baby.
    • Whenever the family get invited to a party, Oscar isn't included on the list.
    • It's not frequent but every so often, Trudy will be making a delicacy and a nearby loud noise will deflate it.
    • People trying Oscar's Proud Snax and reacting with disgust.
    • Anytime Oscar asks his family/friends if anyone wants to try his snacks and they run away.
  • Screw Politeness, I'm a Senior!: Suga Mama and Papi. Oh boy are they this trope!
  • Secret Ingredient: Suga Mama's cooking is so delicious because she put her foot in it. Normally this is just a turn of phrase, but she meant it literally, and revealed it on a national TV show which caused everyone to get sick.
  • Series Continuity Error: In "Love Thy Neighbor", LaCienega has big feet that she's embarrassed about, but other times she's shown bareboot her feet are normal size.
  • Shaking the Rump: While driving, Penny talks about practicing her Beyoncé dance and proceeds to rub and wiggle her butt up against her window while driving. We even hear people honking at her!
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Olei, who in better clothing also appears thinner as well.
  • Shockingly Expensive Bill: In "Wedding Bell Blues," Oscar is shocked when Wizard Kelly bills him $6,000.00 for Suga Mama's wedding. In response, Wizard Kelly tells him that it was the wrong bill and gives Oscar the bill with the right amount: $75,000.00. This leads to Oscar fainting.
  • Shoe Size Angst: The episode "Love Thy Neighbor" reveals that LaCienega has huge, flipper-like feet, a hereditary trait from her father's side. She is deeply ashamed of them, especially when they get her kicked out of Wizard Kelly's beauty pageant, but she learns to accept them after a pep talk from Oscar.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Oscar and Trudy have an extended Shaft conversation in "Bring It On". Minor references come to it throughout the first season.
    • Wizard Kelly's name is undeniably a reference to NBA legend Magic Johnson.
    • LaCienega Boulevardez. Named after a street in what is often called the Studio Zone in L.A. Her mother is named Sunset.
    • Penny's brother and sister are named after sibling gospel duo BeBe and CeCe Winans.
      • BeBe may very well be a Shout-Out to Bébé's Kids, Smith's previous project. LaCienega refers to BeBe and CeCe as such in "Puff's Magic Adventure".
    • Oscar and Felix? It can't be a coincidence.
    • LaCienega's grandfather, Papi, is an obvious Expy of The Joker. To be specific, the one played by Cesar Romero on the 1960s Adam West Batman show.
    • Penny name-drops Kim Possible in "The Legend of Johnny Lovely".
    • The middle school the kids attend is named for the first (and so far, only) African-American NASCAR driver.
    • The family's favorite shows, Everybody Loves Iesha and My Momma and Me are shout-outs to Moesha and The Parkers. Suga Mama even references the No Ending of Moesha by asking about the little brother who was kidnapped.
    • Penny also refers to Dr. Dolittle. Her voice actress, Kyla Pratt, played the famous doctor's daughter in the modern film version that also inherited his gift in a later sequel.
    • Zoey's voice, Soleil Moon Frye, would later be in the first season of another animated series, Bratz, as the Asian and Nerdy and Genki Girl Jade. Not to mention, before The Proud Family began, Frye was Punky Brewster.
    • "She's Got Game": Zoey's lawyer aunt is named Gloria Cochran, nods to Gloria Steinem and Johnnie Cochran.
    • "Tween Town" has Al Roker acting a lot like the Wicked Witch of the West.
  • Shrinking Violet: The principal, like Hooks, can be very loud.
  • Slobs vs. Snobs: "Behind Family Lines" essentially becomes this between Trudy's (snobs) and Oscar's (slobs) families.
  • Spelling Bee: When Wizard Kelly launches a spelling bee competition, Oscar forces Penny to train and makes her enter the competition so that he can re-live his glory days all over again, but the son of a contestant who lost to Oscar in a spelling bee that happened years ago made other ways to win the competition.
  • Stock Audio Clip: Many of the characters' grunts, screams and laughs, including most of Papi's laughs, are made up of audio clips that keep getting reused in many episodes.
  • Stock Footage:
    • "Camping Trip": Trudy bakes a cake which falls flat because Oscar yells out her name. This same clip has been reused in several episodes, an example being "There's Something About Rene" where after the clip is used, she's baking a different cake! It occurs in the series in general also where a clip in one episode is reused again seconds later.
    • "Don't Leave Home Without It": When Trudy calls Penny downstairs, a reused clip of Penny walking downstairs from "E-Z Jackster" is used.
  • Straw Misogynist: Coach Collins has shades of this. He had issues with Penny wanting to join the football team because of her gender. Also, in the episode "Twins to Tweens," he even replaced Penny with her magically teenaged brother Be Be because he was not only as good as Penny, but because he was a boy.
  • Take That!: In "One in a Million", Oscar wants to get a one way ticket to "a place nobody goes or likes to visit" which turns out to be Cleveland.
  • Talking Animal: The white rabbit that shows up very near the end of "Psycho Duck" says one line in response to Trudy's "cute harmless little bunny" line.
  • Temporary Love Interest: Kwok, the Asian boy that Penny dates in "Romeo Must Wed". It ends with the two getting together, but by the next season their relationship is never referenced again even though Kwok makes occasional appearances.
  • The Ahnold: a recurring archetype whenever a strong man in a minor role show up, usually with jobs like bodyguard and security.
  • Theme Naming: Dijonay and her siblings are all named after spices, though it doesn't even strike you as odd at first if you've heard the off-the-wall names some urban black parents (or even white parents, think of Sage, Pepper, Ginger or Basil) give their children.
  • Toothy Bird: Chester the duck in "Psycho Duck" has sharp teeth.
  • Tyop on the Cover: In "The Good, the Bad, the Ugly", Alicia Keys is credited as "Alicia Keyes".
  • The Unfair Sex: Oscar. Big Time. Part of it is a result of Oscar being the shows Butt-Monkey, but 9 times out of 10, any conflict between Oscar and Trudy always have Oscar at fault, and the other time it'll still paint Oscar as the bad guy.
  • The Unfavorite:
    • Oscar, to Suga Mama. This is demonstrated further when Suga Mama complained that when Oscar was a kid, he wouldn't stop calling for help when he fell down a wall.
    • Suga Mama is implied to be this when an episode introduced her older psychic sister, who she claimed to be their parents' favorite. Trudy even lampshades this.
    • Penny gets this when BeBe and CeCe are magically aged into teenagers. Her own mother even tells this directly to her face. WTF?
  • Verbal Tic:
    • Bobby, y'all!
    • Wizard Kelly.
    • And Sir Paid-A-Lot, Dawg!
  • Unrequited Love: Dijonay/Sticky.
  • The Voiceless: Two of the Gross sisters (Olei, the biggest one and Gina, the smallest one) never speak. Nubia, the middle one, does all of their talking.
    • Although they are actually able to sing...and very well at that.
  • We Want Our Jerk Back: In one episode, LaCienega is humiliated because of the cruel jokes aimed at her feet, and Penny misses how much of a jerk LaCienega used to be.
  • Wild Teen Party: Penny has a sleepover that quickly turns into this when LaCienega calls everyone from their middle school.
  • With Friends Like These...: Seriously, Penny's friends are extremely quick to abandon one of their own at the drop of a hat. One episode was particularly vicious about this when Dijonay tricks Penny into babysitting her numerous siblings, then runs off to a concert with the other girls and lies to them about it, she gets her Laser-Guided Karma towards the end of the episode, though.
    • Possibly lampshaded in "A Star Is Scorned", where Penny becomes a successful singer and abandons her friends. When Penny brings up how her friends wouldn't speak to her, Suga Mama says Penny is better off without them, while also saying that Dijonay girl is "faker than her fake friends".
  • World of Weirdness: This setting is really really weird. Some episodes appear to set it in a bit more normal setting, but others (especially the camping episode) have this set in some kind of really really weird place. (Oscar and Felix even get taken to a nest by a pterodactyl!)
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: The Gross Sisters. Actually, they have blue hair, blue skin and wear blue overalls.
    • Penny turns blue when she's sent to boot camp.
      • It's revealed that the reason the girls are blue is due to them being ashy.

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