Follow TV Tropes


Western Animation / The Secret Saturdays

Go To
A Badass Family like no other. note 

The Secret Saturdays is a Cartoon Network action-adventure animated series created by Jay Stephens, an underground comic book artist responsible for the Emmy Award-winning Tutenstein and Annie Award nominee Jetcat. The series ran from October 3rd, 2008 to January 30th, 2010.

The show follows the titular Saturdays, a family of cryptozoologists consisting of parents Doc and Drew, their biological son, Zak, their adopted son, a Fiskerton phantom named Fisk, and their pets, a Komodo dragon named Komodo and a pterosaur named Zon. They belong to an international organization known as the Secret Scientists, whose mission statement is to uncover the secrets of the world before those who would use them for ill get the chance.

Eleven years prior to the story, Doc and Drew unearthed a mystical item from a Sumerian archaeological dig called the Kur Stone. It was then stolen by V.V. Argost, the beloved host of TV's Weird World. He aims to find Kur, an ancient Sumerian cryptid said to have the power to raise a cryptid army, with which he intends to Take Over the World. Although the Scientists were able to retrieve and dismantle it, eleven years later, Argost has figured out who was guarding which piece, and begins the chase anew...

The show can best be described as Jonny Quest crossed with The Herculoids with a touch of B-list horror thrown in, with Stephens citing artist Alex Toth and Hanna-Barbera's 1960s action-adventure programming as large influences.

One of the most under-appreciated series to air on the network, The Secret Saturdays was shuffled from timeslot to timeslot and given virtually no advertising or reruns. The characters made an appearance years later in the Ben 10: Omniverse episode "T.G.I.S. (Thank Goodness It's Saturday)", albeit with different voice actors and character designs.


  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: The Cool Ships tend to be animated with CGI.
  • Abandoned Mine: Much of "Into the Mouth of Darkness" takes place in an abandoned silver mine.
  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: Present in "Kur Part 2", when the Nagas attack New York through the sewers.
  • Ace Pilot: Drew. She's frustrated when a plan requires her to be shot down, as she has a reputation to uphold.
  • Action Mom: Drew Saturday.
  • Advanced Ancient Acropolis: Kumari Kandam hasn't surfaced in centuries, but they've got lasers and electricity.
    • The lemurian city of Shangri-La is hidden behind an illusion, but features a telepathic altar capable of speaking to everyone nearby in their native tongue.
  • Adventure Archaeologist: Tons. The Saturday family most prominently, as they regularly visit ancient tombs and temples, but Abbey recovers ancient artifacts to sell them to museums, and Van Rook sometimes goes excavating so he can sell artifacts to the highest bidder.
  • Affectionate Gesture to the Head: Zak catches a lot of hair-tousling from the adults of the series.
  • All Animals Are Domesticated: The Saturdays have a pet Komodo dragon, although it has been genetically modified for Amplified Animal Aptitude. They also adopt a pterosaur named Zon. Word of God has said that Komodo is roughly equivalent to the family dog, while Zon is more like a horse - too wild to keep in the house.
  • All There in the Manual: Jay Stephens answered a viewer questions on Toonzone while the show was airing, and continues to make comments on his Instagram. A Field Guide was also released that holds some extra and clarifying content.
  • All Myths Are True: To an extent. UFOs, cryptids, and Alternate Universes have been confirmed to exist, and most mythological creatures fit under the cryptid umbrella. Argost says it best:
    Argost: "Impossible"? Only someone with a tragic lack of imagination would use such a vulgar word. We deal with cryptids, my dear. We live in the world of "impossible."
  • Alternate Universe: The smoke mirror dimension is a darker reflection of the Saturday's world. Word of God says it's not actually a Mirror Universe — likely, it's a reference to Tetzcatlipoca's failed stint as a sun.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: The naga worship Kur, desire to Kill All Humans, and are never portrayed as anything but dangerous and evil.
  • Ambiguously Human: V.V. Argost and Epsilon's "people" both caught a lot of this while the show was running. Epsilon and Francis are confirmed to be human through Word of God, while Argost turns out to be a yeti.
  • Amplifier Artifact: The Hand of Tsul'Kalu at the end of Zak's Claw amplify his cryptid-influencing powers.
  • Ancient Keeper: The telepathic lemurian construct in Shangri-La. Unfortunately, they get interrupted before it can reveal anything too substantial.
  • Anti-Anti-Christ: Zak, once it's revealed that he's the reincarnation of God of Evil, Kur. He's not happy at all to learn of this, and spends all of Season 2 fighting against his destiny.
  • Apocalypse How:
    • In "The Atlas Pin", the Nagas threaten to cause a Class 4 by pulling the titular pin out of its place between the tectonic plates, which would cause a global earthquake chain severe enough to rip apart the continents.
    • In Season 2, the Nagas actively want Kur (who is Zak) to inflict a Class 3a, and Kur's powers themselves seem to want him to go through with Kill All Humans. In the series finale, when Argost has obtained the powers of Kur's antimatter doppelgänger, the Nagas persuade him to try doing this to humanity instead of merely subjugating them.
  • Apocalypse Maiden: Zak, as Kur's reincarnation, is supposedly destined to destroy all humans, although all the sources that claim this have their own agendas.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism:
    • In "Paris is Melting," the assembled Secret Scientists express disbelief that an Alternate Universe and Evil Doppelgangers are the cause of Fiskerton's rampages, despite all the other fantastic things they've encountered.
    • Sometimes Doc's disbelief in magic comes across this way, although Sufficiently Analyzed Magic is in play in this setting, and Doc's issue is more with the idea that unexplained phenomena can't be explained period, not that it can't be explained with their current technology.
  • Artifact of Doom: The Naga Relic, an object that glows brightly in close proximity to Kur. Drew warns constantly that it's made of corrupting dark magic, although nothing comes of that setup.
    • The Kur Stone also qualifies, as it turns out to be a Soul Jar for Kur.
  • Artistic License – History: Many historical and mythological settings and figures are referenced, including the Koh Ker archaeological site, Epic of Gilgamesh, and the Library at Alexandria, but they've been heavily edited and made more fantastical to work better in the show.
  • Assimilation Backfire: In the series finale, Argost successfully steals Zak's Kur powers despite already harboring the powers of an antimatter Kur from an Alternate Universe. When matter and antimatter come into close contact, reality comes apart — having both versions of Kur inside of him causes Argost to explode.
  • Atlantis: Atlanteans are mentioned, but Kumari Kandam gets much more focus and is a massive nod to Atlantean mythology.
    Zak: I thought Kumari Kandam was destroyed... that it sunk under the sea after a big earthquake?
    Doc: What? Who's been feeding you that garbage?
  • Attack of the Monster Appendage: The Antarctica Cryptid first appears to be a giant snake/eel monster rising out of the ice, until it's revealed that that's not the end with the brain in it...
  • Author Appeal: While the series normally tries to use cryptids that don't get much focus, creator Jay Stephens couldn't help putting his favorite cryptid in. Argost, it turns out, is a yeti.
  • Automatic Crossbows: Tsul'Kalu wields a crossbow that fires three bolts at once.
  • Back from the Dead: Zak dies in the series finale, but is resuscitated three minutes later.
  • Badass Adorable:
    • Zak — tiny and cute, 11 years old, but he's always had a penchant for danger, and grows into the role of hero as the show continues.
    • Fiskerton — cuddly and comical, but do not get between him and the family. As sweet as he is, he's still a seven-foot tall gorilla-cat.
  • Badass Boast:
    • Argost taunts the family with one in "Once More The Nightmare Factory."
      Argost: Men have tried to break into Weird World before. But as they all tragically discovered, Weird World is the kind of home that breaks back.
    • Argost again, once he's taken control over the Antarctica cryptid.
      Argost: This is Kur, boy! He was ancient before man's time began! His power has laid waste to civilizations! And who...are you?
  • Badass Bookworm: Most of the Secret Scientists are scientists first and asskickers second. Abbey Grey also qualifies.
  • Badass Family: The titular Saturdays. Even their pets are badass.
  • Bad Future: In Season 2, both Rani Nagi and Tsul'Kalu give Zak visions of a future in which he has embraced his Kur nature and is actively slaughtering humanity. The former does so in an attempt to convince him to surrender to his fate, the second is trying to convince Zak to let it take away his Amplifier Artifact so that it cannot be used for evil.
  • Bad Powers, Good People: There are indications that Zak's powers are inherently evil, even as far back as Season 1, where they automatically invert the powers of a good-luck tiger; even Word of God has chimed in that losing his powers was the only way for Zak to have firmly stayed on the side of good. However, he does his best to be a hero regardless.
  • Bad Powers, Bad People: Zak Monday has powers that whip cryptids into a violent frenzy, and he's incredibly sadistic. Applies to Argost once he steals those powers.
  • Batman Gambit: Argost's cryptid fighting ring. The Saturdays find out too late that the building holding the ring was actually Kur's tomb, and Argost started these fights knowing that they would come and rescue all of the cryptids, including the guardian beast preventing him from venturing deeper.
  • Battle Butler: While Munya takes a different form to fight in, he's normally dressed as Argost's butler, complete with High-Class Glass.
  • Battle in the Rain: Doc and Tsul'Kalu fight in the middle of a thunderstorm on the ceiling of the Saturday HQ.
  • Beastly Bloodsports: The Saturdays break up an underground cryptid fighting ring in "Cryptid vs. Cryptid".
  • The Beastmaster: Zak has cryptid-influencing powers, which become more and more powerful as the series progresses.
    • The kumari are capable of telepathically controlling the giant sea serpents their cities are built on.
    • The naga are able to control snakes, ranging from normal cobras to the kumari sea serpents.
  • Beware My Stinger Tail: Baron Finster. Half-man, half-mechanical scorpion.
  • Big Applesauce: The naga attack Manhattan when they attempt to start a war on humanity on Zak's behalf.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Zak is immediately willing to cover for Fiskerton accidentally breaking a bed once they've adopted him.
  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch, and Yeti: Normally averted, as the show deliberately sets out to feature the obscure cryptids that almost never get the limelight; however, Argost is a yeti, as that's the creator's favorite cryptid.
  • Big "NO!": Doc has a major one after he thinks his family has been killed by Weird World.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Season 2 finale. Sure, Argost is finally defeated and the Cryptid War ended as quickly as it began, but Van Rook died sacrificing himself for Drew, and the episode ends on his funeral.
  • Body-Count Competition: Inverted. Drew and Doyle have a competition over who can save the most people from a volcanic explosion.
  • Book Ends: In the first episode, Van Rook berates his apprentice for using too many concussion grenades, telling him that "two is plenty." The last scene in the series is of Van Rook's funeral, where Doyle sends him off by leaving him three flowers and picking one back up, telling him that "two is plenty" with a final salute.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Any cryptid under the influence of Zak Monday's power is whipped into a psychotic frenzy. They appear to have very fuzzy memories of anything that happened in this state.
    • An entire British town was brainwashed into serving as the owlman's personal cult.
  • Break the Cutie: Season 2 is one long series of these for Zak. To recap: the evil race of snake people think he's a god meant to destroy all humanity, Argost tricks him into betraying his parents and taunts him over it, and even the "honorable hunter" Tsul'Kalu thinks he's destined to become evil.
  • Breather Episode: "Curse of the Stolen Tiger" is a lighthearted episode featuring Zak's love interest and a minor villain that's never seen again. It falls between the action-heavy and emotionally charged "Once More the Nightmare Factory" and the dramatic revelations of "The Kur Guardian".
  • Bridge Logic: Drew attempts this in "Food of the Giants", although the felled tree ends up sliding into the chasm.
  • Broken Record: Doc Saturday's Evil Doppelgänger. "Bad copy bad copy bad copy bad copy bad copy!"
  • Brought Down to Normal: Happens to Zak in the finale, after he dies and is resuscitated. He wakes up unable to use his powers.
  • Brown Note: The Flute of Gilgamesh. Its music was able to rend Kur's soul from its body. It has a similar effect on Zak and Argost.
  • Building Swing: One of Zak's preferred modes of transport.
  • But for Me, It Was Tuesday: When Drew and Doyle confront Argost over killing their parents, he claims that there were so many back then that he can't remember "each individual scream."
  • Call-Back: Drew likes to toss TVs around, much to Doc's chagrin.
    • "Two is plenty"
  • Catchphrase:
    • Argost: "Greetings and bienvenue!"
    • To a lesser extent, Doc's "be smart" advice to the boys.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: Given that this is a cartoon, to a certain extent everyone counts; however, the Saturday family at least attempts to explain that Doc, Drew, Doyle, and Zak all trained to get where they are.
  • Charm Person: Zak can influence cryptids, but is only capable of making them do something that some small part of them already wanted to do.
  • The Chosen One: Zak's parents theorize that he was born with cryptid-influencing powers to balance out the potential evil they brought into the world when they unearthed the Kur Stone. It turns out that Zak's powers exist because he is Kur, but seeing as Kur is destined to Kill All Humans, he may still be a Chosen One...just an evil one.
  • Civilization Destroyer: Argost claims that Kur's power has laid waste to civilizations, plural.
  • Clear My Name: Fiskerton is framed by Zak and Komodo Monday for several attacks on the Secret Scientists. Technically, he really was guilty, just under the influence of Zak Monday's frenzy-inducing powers.
  • Clone Angst: Francis's "people" found their perfect agent 100 years ago and have been "repeating" him ever since. One day Francis will be an Epsilon, and he'll have a Francis of his own. This has lead to some mile-high expectations on his shoulders, and he's clearly not happy about how set in stone his future is.
  • Clothes Make the Superman: Doc has a glove that amplifies the kinetic force of his punches, among other abilities. He's a totally normal human without it.
  • Comic-Book Adaptation: Prequel comic stories based on the show were featured in Cartoon Network Action Pack.
  • Coming of Age Story: Word of God has said that the reason Zak ages alongside the show was because the show was meant to examine themes about growing up.
  • Cool Ship: The Saturday's airship and smaller, more compact Griffin, Argost's fighter jet, and Beeman's flying saucer. Pick your favorite.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Since Doyle was raised on the streets and then worked as a cutthroat mercenary, this is how he fights. Doc actually asks him to pass on what he learned to Zak in order to prepare him for the future.
  • Convection, Schmonvection: "Twelve Hundred Degrees Fahrenheit" features an actively exploding volcano and lava flows that characters snowboard and jetpack over with no problems. Taken to a ridiculous extent when both Argost and Drew swim through the volcano. At least they were both wearing protective gear - a shed volcano lizard's skin in Argost's case, and a heat-proof suit in Drew's, Though one wonders how Argost was able to open his mouth to talk...
  • Cosmic Keystone: The eponymous pin in "The Atlas Pin," which was created by the Atlanteans to hold tectonic plates together. Tampering with it causes devastating worldwide earthquakes. Removing it will destroy the planet.
  • Crossover: With Ben 10: Omniverse in the episode "T.G.I.S.".
  • The Cruella: In "The Return of Tsul 'Kalu", Doyle meets a black market cryptid dealer who eats panda dumplings.
  • Cunning Linguist: Drew can speak 37 different languages, and tends to act as the team's translator and interpreter. She's also the only one on Team Saturday capable of reading the Kur Stone.
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Averted — Weird World, Argost's TV show, is both extremely popular and extremely well-merchandised. And he used his own knowledge of cryptids to design Baron Finster’s scorpion lower body in exchange for the funding to kickstart it.
  • Dating Catwoman: Doyle and Abbey.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Zon gets one in "The Underworld Bride."
  • Deal with the Devil: Zak's deal with Argost in Season 2.
  • Deadpan Snarker: This is a World of Snark, so practically everyone gets a turn, but Doyle and Beeman are standouts for how fast their quips come.
  • Depraved Kids' Show Host: Argost. He's just as hammy and theatrical on-screen as he is when the cameras aren't rolling, but the mannerisms that are charming on TV are legitimately threatening when he's trying to kill you in real life.
  • Despair Event Horizon: After one long series of Break the Cutie, when Zak realizes that the Bad Future Tsul'Kalu is showing him isn't his own worst fear, but rather, Tsul'Kalu's, he very nearly gives up trying to be good. When Tsul'Kalu instead acknowledges him, it inspires him enough to keep fighting.
    Zak: If even the good cryptids think I'm destined for evil, then...I don't know why I should fight anymore.
  • Dialogue Reversal: Zak and Francis, while Zak is fighting him in a robo-pod.
    Zak: I've got these clumsy monster hands...they're hard to control sometimes.
    Francis: I've got these clumsy mechanical hands...they're hard to control sometimes!
  • Diner Brawl: Zak and Fisk accidentally cause one at the start of "Cryptid vs. Cryptid."
  • Dismantled MacGuffin: The Kur Stone was split into three pieces in order to prevent it from falling into the wrong hands. Notably, the villain actually has all three by the end of the first episode, and it's the heroes that have to piece it together, encountering each of the three pieces at different points in the series.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: "The Underworld Bride": A teenage boy finds out that his sister is smitten with a young man of questionable morality, gets overprotective of her, realizes that said boy is only using her as and plans to dispose of her in a horrific way, and his sister won't believe him...we're talking about Zak, Zon, and the Duah.
  • A Dog Named "Dog": A Komodo dragon named Komodo and a Fiskerton phantom named Fiskerton. Zak's got a terrible naming sense.
  • Dramatic Chase Opening: "Guess Who's Going to be Dinner?" starts with Fiskerton running through a forest while being threatened by dangerous plants.
  • Eating the Enemy: Argost attacks the Saturdays with a swarm of flesh-eating blackflies. Just as they're about to close in on Zak and Zon, Komodo leaps in front of them and eats the whole swarm in one gulp. Zak's not sure if he should be impressed or disgusted.
  • Enemy Rising Behind: Happens at the end of "Once More the Nightmare Factory":
    Doc: It's over. We won.
    [A giant migas rises out of the water behind him while his family tries to get his attention.]
    Doc: No. It's over. I'm not turning around to look at it. We won.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Everything about Piecemeal is personally offensive to Van Rook. Van Rook is also appalled when he discovers Argost used to kill for sport and take trophies when he was a yeti living in the Himalayas.
  • Even the Rats Won't Touch It: Even Komodo spits out the hair sandwich Drew makes Doc in "The Vengeance of Hibagon."
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: V.V. Argost's home, Weird World, is filled with deadly traps and deadlier monsters. It once wiped out 33 Secret Scientists in one fell swoop. "Weird World is the kind of house that breaks back," indeed.
  • Evil Chef: Pietro "Piecemeal" Maltese is a criminally insane Extreme Omnivore, dead set on cooking and eating the rarest animals on the planet.
  • Evil Doppelgänger: The Saturdays encounter a "smoke mirror" that summons evil versions of themselves from a dark Alternate Universe.
  • Exact Words: The lemurians are Kur Guardians — not guardians for Kur, but rather, guardians of the world against Kur's evil.
  • Extreme Omnivore: In addition to his Amplified Animal Aptitude, Komodo eats any kind of meat. Mostly Played for Laughs, but comes in handy in "Van Rook's Apprentice," when he leaps out of hiding to swallow an entire swarm of Argost's flesh-eating blackflies.
    • Piecemeal had his jaw surgically altered to allow him to bite through metal. His stated goal is to eat the rarest animals on the earth, including atmospheric jellyfish and Fiskerton.
  • Exotic Entree:
    • Piecemeal's only desire is to eat cryptids.
    • In "The Return of Tsul 'Kalu", Doyle has to protect a black market cryptid dealer who eats panda dumplings. Doyle himself takes a bite before he knows what they are, and when he finds out, he spits it out and berates the dealer.
  • Expressive Mask: Argost's mask moves with his mouth and eyes, with the unfortunate side-effect that many in the audience didn't realize he was even wearing a mask.
  • Eyeless Face: The victims of Ahuizotl end up with smooth, empty expanses of skin where their eyes used to be. It's never specified whether or not they get their eyes back.
  • Evil Me Scares Me: Zak is shown visions at two different points in the show of a dark future where he's embraced Kur's destiny of slaughtering all humans. He considers this to be his worst fear.
  • Explosive Propulsion: In "Where Lies the Engulfer," Zak uses the blast from one of Doyle's grenades to propel himself through a skylight.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Abbey Grey, Zak's old babysitter and Doyle's temporary girlfriend, betrays the Saturdays when Van Rook offers her a job. It's not's money.
  • Falling Chandelier of Doom: One of these falls on Van Rook in the comics.
  • Faux Affably Evil: V.V. Argost. Charismatic, theatrical, and absolutely willing to force-feed acid to a pterosaur and attempt to stab a sword through Zak.
  • Fight Clubbing: The cryptid fighting ring in "Cryptid. vs. Cryptid". Overlaps with Beastly Bloodsports.
  • Fish People: The people of Kumari Kandam.
  • Flaming Sword: Drew wields a solar-powered fire sword capable of shooting fireballs and generating a wide dome of fire. It works in moonlight, too, where the flames turn blue. The design is based on the blade wielded by the bodhisattva Manjushri, which symbolizes wisdom that cuts through ignorance.
  • Flash Back:
    • "Van Rook's Apprentice" is the first instance of a flashback to the incident in the Himalayas that rendered Drew an orphan. We later get the full story in "And Your Enemies Closer," where Doyle remembers that it wasn't just a storm that tore their family apart - the yeti was there, too.
    • "Ghost In The Machine" has a flashback to Doc's childhood spent working in a gene sequencing lab in the Louisiana bayou.
    • "The Kur Guardian" features Fiskerton flashing back to his first meeting with Zak, and his eventual adoption into the Saturday family.
    • "The Return of Tsul'Kalu" shows how Doc got his blind eye — it's a remnant of a battle with the titular Tsul'Kalu after Doc took responsibility for Zak accidentally destroying a sacred site.
  • Flying Seafood Special: Flying atmospheric jellyfish plague the family in "The Swarm at the Edge of Space."
  • Foe-Tossing Charge: Komodo manages to clear a hallway of dangerous atmospheric jellyfish when Fisk throws a rubber ball for Komodo to fetch.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Zak's powers cause the good-luck blue tiger's powers to turn into bad luck, foreshadowing the inherently evil nature of his own powers.
    • Zak is immune to whatever the owlman uses to knock out the rest of his family. He may have been granted immunity because of his own mental abilities as Kur.
    • When Zak asks Fiskerton to point out on a spinning globe where his instincts are saying Kur is, Fisk points through the globe at Zak, shattering it. Zak is Kur, and Fisk's instincts were completely correct.
    • Argost tells Zak that he has "a weakness for the classic monster cliches." Argost turns out to be a yeti, meaning he is a "classic monster."
  • Fiery Redhead: Doyle. It's his natural hair color, too.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Most cryptids react favorably to Zak once he's used his cryptid-influencing power over them, but many of them default to being friendly with him even without his powers. Played with, because it turns out his powers may be inherently evil, and therefore the animal magnetism he has is decidedly not innocent or sweet in nature, even if Zak is firmly Bad Powers, Good People.
  • Genius Bruiser: The Saturday family as a whole qualify, but Doc is particularly tech-minded and his weapon of choice is a power glove for enhanced punches.
  • Genre Throwback: Just look at the shows that inspired it.
  • Ghost Town: In "Where Lies the Engulfer", Doyle takes Zak on training mission set in an abandoned resort town in northern Canada. Doyle attributes its ghost town status to the fact that dream projects like this get abandoned all the time — he's never questioned it. It turns out that the lake that the town draws water from gets aggressive if any is taken, and the two find mad scrawling all over the town, as well as a last will and testament, when it starts chasing them.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Zak's eyes glow when he uses his powers. So do his Evil Doppelgänger's.
  • God of Evil: Kur has worshippers in the Naga, a tomb that doubles as a temple, and mythological references the Underworld in Sumerian mythology as well as Shiva, goddess of destruction, from Hindu mythology. It's unclear exactly how evil Kur actually was, but at the very least, it does not have good PR.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Doc has a scar over one eye, earned in a fight to protect his son.
    Van Rook: Ah, Drew. You were the only thing I liked almost as much as money.
  • Gotta Get Your Head Together: Zak and Argost react to the soul-rending Flute of Gilgamesh by clutching their heads.
  • Grappling-Hook Pistol: This is one of the Claw's main functions.
  • A Handful for an Eye: Zak flings a handful of mud into Munya's face during their fight in "The Kur Stone, Part 2."
  • Happily Married: Drew and Doc. They banter, they flirt, they go on date nights.
  • Hates Being Touched: Francis, who even has an electrified force field that shocks any unauthorized individuals who get too close.
    Zak: [getting shocked again] Will you stop that!
    Francis: But then you might actually touch me.
  • Heel–Face Turn:
    • Doyle, Van Rook's apprentice, has one early on in the series when he realizes he doesn't jive with Argost's ideals, and might finally find a place to belong with his long-lost sister's family.
    • Van Rook himself ends up on Team Saturday, after Abbey steals his business and he's desperate for employment.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Leonidas Van Rook takes a hit meant for Drew in the series finale.
    • Zak lets Argost drain his powers because he knows that the reaction between Kur and antimatter Kur will probably not agree with Argost. He dies for three minutes, but is ultimately resuscitated.
  • Hidden Elf Village: The Lemurian city of Shangri-La is hidden behind an illusion, deep within the Himalayas. It takes Fiskerton's instincts convincing him to drive a jet through what appears to be solid rock to get to it.
  • High-Altitude Interrogation: Doyle and Van Rook dangle Baron Finster from a skyscraper in "Into the Mouth of Darkness."
  • Hijacking Cthulhu: Argost takes control of the Antarctica Cryptid by plugging himself into its brain via Devonian annelids.
    • Zak manages to master and control his Kur powers in time to save the world from Argost in the series finale.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Argost's shortsighted desire for power leads him to absorb both Kur and antimatter Kur — too bad for him, matter and anti-matter do not get along, and Argost winds up exploding for his trouble.
  • How Did You Know? I Didn't: In "Black Monday," when Drew attempts to hit her Mirror Universe counterpart with the Claw, her Evil Doppelgänger reveals herself by instinctively parrying it with her prehensile tongue.
    Zak: How did you she could do that?
    Drew: I didn't. I just wanted to hit in her in the face.
  • Humanoid Abomination: The owlman, a grotesque black monster that brainwashes a human town into serving as its cult and regularly has them bring him humans to eat.
  • Humiliation Conga: Argost suffers one of these in the first season finale. First, he gets overpowered by Zak, dog-piled by the cryptids living in the Antartica Cryptid, then his own manservant webs him up and carries him off to protect him from his own Villainous Breakdown.
  • Hurt Foot Hop: Argost does one of these when Zak delivers him a whack to the shin.
  • I Ate WHAT?!: Doyle tries some of Groshomme's dumplings. When he asks what's in them and is told that it's panda, he spits it out and asks Groshomme what's wrong with him.
  • If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him!: Invoked by Zak to prevent his mom from killing Argost.
  • Impairment Shot: The eye-shaped "about to lose consciousness" variant is used several times when Zak is rendered unconscious.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Epsilon's agents could stand to spend more time in the booth, given the number of shots they fire without hitting anyone in "Paris is Melting".
  • Implausible Boarding Skills: In "Twelve Hundred Degrees Fahrenheit", Drew cuts a shield-shaped slab of wood from a tree and uses it as a makeshift snowboard. Doyle straps his jetpack to his feet to serve the same purpose.
  • Impossible Thief: Wadi. She's capable of stealing the belt from Zak's waist without him noticing.
  • Improvised Zipline: In "Curse of the Stolen Tiger", the entire family (plus Wadi) use their belts to slide down a rope.
  • Improbable Infant Survival: Zak manages to live through every disaster the show throws at him. Subverted horribly come Season 2; Argost manages to use the Flute of Gilgamesh to kill Zak Monday, and later even Zak Saturday, although Zak Saturday gets resuscitated. Zak Monday remains Killed Off For Real, however.
  • Ironic Echo: In the first episode, Van Rook chastises Doyle for using several concussion grenades on Doc, berating him with the words "two is plenty." At his funeral, Doyle places three flowers on his grave, then takes one back, saying "two is plenty" while giving him a final salute.
  • Jerkass:
    • Van Rook is slimy, cheap, and such a bad mentor that Doyle fantasized about beating him up while he was still apprenticed under him.
    • Dr. Beeman operates in perpetual Sarcasm Mode, openly mocks his allies, and has the least qualms about the Scientist's plan to cryogenically freeze Zak indefinitely.
    • Both Epsilon and Francis qualify. Francis is arrogant, manipulative, and takes every opportunity he can to insult Zak's intelligence or "personal grooming." Epsilon is more business-like, but that doesn't stop him from loudly and angrily berating Francis for having thoughts of his own.
  • Jet Pack: Doyle and Van Rook's preferred mode of travel.
  • Jumping on a Grenade: In "Where Lies the Engulfer", Zak jumps on one of Doyle's concussion and uses the resulting blast to propel himself through a skylight.
  • Kid Hero: Zak.
  • Kill All Humans: This is the naga's goal. And Argost's, once Rani Nagi takes advantage of his Villainous Breakdown to convince him to switch motives from ruling the humans to massacring them.
  • Killed Off for Real: The owlman, Eterno, Van Rook, Zak Monday, and V.V. Argost himself.
  • Killer Yoyo: Wadi wields one she calls "The Thieves' Yoyo" in later episodes.
  • Large Ham: Argost is a larger-than-life TV personality that's just as hammy when the camera isn't rolling.
  • Last of His Kind: Fiskerton may very well be the last lemurian.
  • Lava Is Boiling Kool-Aid: In "Twelve Hundred Degrees Fahrenheit", Argost and Drew go on a swim through lava. Drew compares it to swimming through a giant milkshake.
  • Little Black Dress: Drew wears one for date night with Doc in "Guess Who's Going to be Dinner?"
  • Living Battery: The Saturdays visit a small city that powered by an imprisoned lau, or giant electric catfish. The town intends to sell her children for the same purpose.
  • Living Shadow: The owlman looks like one.
  • Long-Lost Relative: Doyle is Drew's long-lost brother.
  • Lost World: The ancient lemurian city of Shangri-La is hidden behind an illusion deep in the Himalayas.
    • Kumari Kandam is believed to be one in-universe, but it's actually an actively populated underworld city of Fish People.
  • Love the Product, Hate the Producer: Weird World is an extremely popular TV show run and hosted by V.V. Argost, the Saturday's most hated and dangerous enemy, who repeatedly tries to kill them all when they attempt to foil his plans for world domination. Despite this Zak still watches Argost's show regularly and has various Weird World merchandise in his room, much to his parent's chagrin.
  • MacGuffin: The three pieces of the Kur Stone.
  • Mama Bear: Drew. While she's already an Action Mom, threatening her kids is a good way to get yourself seriously injured.
  • Meaningful Echo: In the very first episode, Van Rook berates Doyle's waste of concussion grenades by yelling at him that "two is plenty." At Van Rook's funeral, Doyle puts three flowers on the grave then takes one back, because "two is plenty."
    • When Doyle is first dismissed from Team Saturday, it's on unfriendly terms, and he storms off with an angry "see you around, family." The next time he decides to leave, it's after they've patched things up, and he simply wants to be his own boss. His parting words are, once again, "see you around, family," but notably happier.
  • Meaningful Funeral: The show ends on Van Rook's funeral, with the main cast assembled to say their goodbyes. The final lines of the show are Doyle's sendoff, a Meaningful Echo of the first episode.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • Zak comes from a long line of biblical names, so his name is probably short for some variant of Zakarya, meaning "God has remembered." This becomes incredibly significant when it's revealed that he's Kur's reincarnation.
    • Solomon means "peace," and Doc tends to be very calm. It's also the name attached to the Lesser Key of Solomon, a book on demonology, which parallels Doc's job.
    • Drew and Doyle are both Gaelic in origin, reflecting their family connection.
    • Wadi is an Arabic term for a riverbed that's only full after heavy rain, which ties into her people's connection with water.
  • Messianic Archetype: Zak. Subverted when it turns out he wasn't born to stop Kur, but rather, he is Kur, but played straight again once Argost absorbs antimatter Kur and Zak is the only one who can stop him. He even has a Heroic Sacrifice, dies, and gets resurrected.
    Doc: Your mother has a theory. In every ancient legend, there's a balance. Or in terms I'm more comfortable with, for every action, there's an equal and opposite reaction. Your mother and I brought the potential for great evil into the world eleven years ago...but that was also the year you were born.
  • Mind Control: Zak's power is a low-level version.
    • The owlman is capable of brainwashing a whole town into serving as its personal cult.
  • Mirror Universe: The smoke mirror opens a portal to a darker reflection of the Saturday's world. However, Word of God states that it's not actually one of these, as bad characters are not good in the smoke mirror world - but we never actually see any of them in-show. It's actually much closer to an Alternate Universe, as the smoke mirror is a reference to Tetzcatlipoca's failed stint as the world's sun.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: Fiskerton has both gorilla and cat characteristics.
  • Mokele-Mbembe: The Mokele-Mbembe appears twice in the series; once in a vision in the second part of the pilot episode, and in the very last episode in person, where several under Argost's control are shown attacking cities, and then fleeing from the Grootslang after Argost is defeated.
  • Monster in the Ice: In the Season 1 finale, the gigantic cryptid thought to be Kur (actually a Red Herring) is discovered frozen in the Antarctic ice along with its symbiont cryptids, awakening and breaking free thanks to Argost's efforts.
  • Monster of the Week: While the show has a heavy overarching plot, each episode tells a self-contained story that prominently features a cryptid the family encounters. There are some exceptions, especially as the plot begins to pick up, but the overall show follows this format.
  • Mood Whiplash: "Into The Mouth Of Darkness" a light-hearted filler episode that does a 180 when Argost gives Zak the episode's moral: that Zak is destined for evil because Kur is inherently so, and that the bunyips are afraid of him because they know what his powers are.
  • Most Common Superpower: Drew has a noticeable bust even in her combat suit.
  • Multipurpose Tongue: Drew Monday has prehensile tongue she uses as a whip.
    • The Camaroon flashlight frog has a poison-tipped tongue.
  • Murder Water: "Where Lies the Engulfer" features a microscopic cryptid that can turn the lake it lives in into a terrifying monster.
  • My Hovercraft Is Full of Eels: In "Into the Mouth of Darkness", Drew is less than impressed by Doc's grasp of Arabic.
    Drew: "You do realize that you just promised to buy him new butter?"
  • Myth Arc: Keeping Kur from doing evil is the plot of the whole series. It evolves from the hunt for Kur in Season 1 to Zak's internal struggle with his inherently evil powers in Season 2 after it's revealed that he is Kur.
  • Nemean Skinning: Argost wears the shed skin of a cherufe in order to swim through lava in "Twelve Hundred Degrees Fahrenheit."
  • Never Say "Die": In Season 1. However, while the show tries to avoid using the word itself, the show does not shy away from depicting death. Drew's parents, Ulraj's father, thirty-three unnamed Secret Scientists, Zak Monday, and Van Rook are all Killed Off For Real by the end of the series.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Really, Zak, you didn't realize climbing into Argost's ship would present him the perfect opportunity to betray you? Thanks to that, he's managed to steal the Kur powers out of Zak Monday.
    • Also in play when his deal with Argost allows Argost access into the Saturday computers, which is where he learned about Zak Monday in the first place. Honestly, his entire deal with Argost counts.
  • The Nicknamer: Dr. Beeman and Doyle. Doyle does it out of affection (or to annoy Doc), Beeman...maybe can't actually remember peoples' names at all, as his nicknames almost entirely reference physical attributes.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: Fiskerton, Komodo, and Zon. Zon actually goes from Zak's sidekick in Season 1 to Doyle's in Season 2.
  • Not Even Human: V.V. Argost is actually a yeti, revealed moments after he became immune to Zak's powers.
  • "Not So Different" Remark:
    • Van Rook has one with Abbey in the comics, where he tells her that they're both Only in It for the Money, with the only difference being that he sells to the highest bidder and she sells to museums.
    • Francis is on the receiving end of this from Zak, who gives him a speech about how people can tell them what they expect them to be, but can't tell them who they are. This causes Francis to let him go free.
  • Oh, Crap!: Doyle (even going so far as to utter "Oh crud!") as he notices the time has run out on his emergency air supply in "Where Lies the Engulfer".
  • Old-School Dogfighting: The Saturday's airship, despite its size, is capable of holding its own in a fight, but tends to be at a disadvantage against smaller, faster aircraft. Doc builds a small fighter plane, the Griffin, to improve their odds.
  • One-Eyed Bats: "The King of Kumari Kandam" has the Saturdays fight a one-eyed bat-like creature that resembles the Popobawa from Tanzanian mythology.
  • Gravity Falls has one-eyed bats that petrify living creatures and turn people to stone.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Doc Saturday's real name is Solomon, but the only people who call him that are Epsilon and his childhood mentor.
  • "Open!" Says Me: How do you get to the cortex disruptors when your parents have the computer combination? Get your Fiskerton Phantom to smash the touchpad, et voila!
  • Our Cryptids Are More Mysterious: Word of God has explained that cryptids in this universe are unique animals that share a common, mysterious bond, regardless of whether or not they've been scientifically confirmed to exist. They apparently also share some similar quirk in their DNA, although the family was forced to destroy that research before it could be completed.
  • Overly-Long Tongue: Drew Monday has a prehensile tongue.
  • Papa Wolf: Doc will protect Zak at all costs. The fastest, and possibly only, way to make Doc mad is to threaten his family.
  • Parental Abandonment: Although Zak's parents are alive and well, Drew's parents die in her Back Story.
  • Parental Obliviousness: While the family is often aware of the hijinks Zak tries to get up to (and all the episodes of Weird World he's not supposed to be watching), he does manage to convince them that some of the items he's broken were not his fault.
  • The Password Is Always "Swordfish": Van Rook's password is easy to guess once Doyle realizes it ends in "$."
  • Paying for the Action Scene: Zak worries about how much the accidental Diner Brawl is going to take out of his allowance, before a mysterious stranger shows up to pay for it instead.
  • Pepper Sneeze: Fisk has one during the Diner Brawl in "Cryptid vs. Cryptid".
  • Perfectly Cromulent Word: Zak claims 'beautifulous' is a word in British.
  • Pest Controller: Argost's preferred method of fighting is to throw flesh-eating blackflies, Devonian annelids, and other creepy crawlies at his opponents.
  • Phlebotinum Overload: Mixing Zak's powers with those of his antimatter double did not turn out well for Argost.
  • Pivotal Wake-up: Argost performs one in his Weird World intro in "The Thousand Eyes of Ahuizotl."
  • Playing with Fire: Drew's sword shoots fireballs.
  • Poor, Predictable Rock: According to Drew, Doc always picks rock when playing rock-paper-scissors. This allows her to win every match they play.
  • Power Glows: Lots of this. Doc's glove, Drew's sword, Zak's eyes and the Hand of Tsul'Kalu...and that's just the human characters.
  • The Power of the Sun: Drew's Flaming Sword runs on sunlight. Or moonlight, but that's just reflected sunlight anyway.
  • Precocious Crush: The 11-year old Zak has a crush on his old babysitter, Abbey Grey. This causes some serious jealousy issues when she starts dating his uncle Doyle.
  • Properly Paranoid: Doyle always carries bottled water, even to places that have a lake-fed water system like the Mountain View Resort in "Where Lies the Englufer," because he learned to never trust tap water in the sketchy places he spent his youth. Later in the same episode, Zak and Doyle learn that the nearby lake is filled with minuscule cryptids that can turn the lake into Murder Water and go after anyone who takes water from the Zak.
  • Public Secret Message: In the second season, Argost starts sending Zak secret messages in Weird World, his very, very popular TV show.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Argost tells Zak that Kur's power will crush his like a "field mouse in the paw of a bengal tiger" in the second episode.
    • Francis's gives a speech to Zak about how Good Is Dumb (and villains are, too) in "The Swarm At The Edge Of Space".
    • Argost delivers one to Zak in "Into the Mouth of Darkness" that leaves him incredibly disillusioned.
      Argost: My dear boy, you've lied to your parents, betrayed your own mother, and you're about to let the villain walk out of here so mummy and daddy don't learn the truth about our business relationship. I brought you here to discover a monster...and so you have. [...] There's a reason there are no happy, heroic tales of Kur. Congratulations on completing another lesson.
    • Zak's speech to Argost in the series finale, telling Argost that he's a terrible scientist and explaining to him exactly how he's doomed himself. A pity the soundproof chamber prevented Argost from actually hearing any of it.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Averted by Zon and Komodo, who are TeamPets, but played straight with the naga, an Always Chaotic Evil race of Snake People.
  • Right Behind Me: Played with in "Once More the Nightmare Factory."
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Doc goes on an incredible rampage when he believes his family has been killed in "Once More the Nightmare Factory." He manages to curb-stomp Munya, and almost curb-stomps Argost, too.
    Doc: You like making nightmares come true? Welcome to yours.
  • Rocket Jump: In "Where Lies the Engulfer," Zak uses the blast from one of Doyle's grenades to propel himself through a skylight.
  • Rollercoaster Mine: Zak, Drew, Argost, and a few bunyips have a minecart chase in "Into the Mouth of Darkness".
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Ulraj, king of Kumari Kandam. He rode a sea serpent! A giant sea serpent! And he saved your planet.
  • Rule of Cool: The Komodo dragon can FLY A JET. This is also the official Word of God explanation for why everyone in this universe is just a little stronger than normal.
  • Sadly Mythtaken: Some cryptid portrayals diverge from their original accounts, in some cases by quite a bit.
    • The Ahuul is depicted as a monkey with pterosaur wings on its back. Real-life descriptions of the creature typically describe it as a giant bat.
    • The Garuda seen in the show is a huge eagle with no other outstanding traits. The mythological Garuda is usually depicted as a winged man, a humanoid bird (usually with distinct arms and legs), or some middle ground between the two, and usually carries weapons or armor. This is downplayed, however, insofar as the actual Garuda doesn't appear; the creature seen on-screen is an illusion.
    • The Grootslang is depicted as a giant green elephant with four tusks, horns, and a long, spikes-tipped tail. The folkloric Grootslang as described by South African folklorists and travelogues was a fifty-foot python with diamonds for eyes. The closest thing to the show's version is from the 2001 book Giants, Monsters, and Dragons: An Encyclopedia of Folklore, Legend, and Myth, which describes the beast as "huge, like an elephant, with a serpent's tail".
    • The Mapinguari is depicted in the manner common in cryptozoology — that is, as essentially a surviving giant ground sloth. The Mapinguari of Amazonian folklore is a cyclops with a mouth on its belly.
    • The Piasa Bird is depicted as a horned, pterosaur or wyvern-like creature with an arrowhead-tipped tail, hands on its wings, and no mammalian traits beyond a small beard. The Piasa depicted on the Mississippi River murals is somewhat poorly known due to the original depiction being lost, but the contemporary descriptions on which the modern replica was based describe it as having deer antlers, a bearded human face, and an extremely long tail tipped in a fish fin. The wings in the modern version aren't recorded by earlier sources.
    • The Rakshasa is a horned, tusked, and purple tiger. The Rakshasa of Indian myths are depicted as monstrous humanoid demons, and are only rarely specifically tiger-like.
    • The Shedu is essentially a Dimetrodon with a monstrous face and a lizard tongue. The Shedu of Babylonian myth and art was a counterpart to and often synonym for the Lamassu, a bull or lion with wings and a human head.
  • Screw Destiny: This is a major theme of Season 2, although it's brought up in Season 1 by the telepathic lemurian relic insisting that "no creature can escape its nature."
    Zak: They can tell us what they think we are [...] but they can't tell us what we have to be.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Kur's essence was sealed inside the Kur Stone. Unearthing it caused it to jump to the nearest unborn living thing, which happened to be Zak.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend: Doc and Drew are really pushy with shipping Zak and Wadi in "Curse of the Stolen Tiger." Zak ends up having to say this a lot.
  • Shield Surf: In "Twelve Hundred Degrees Fahrenheit", Drew cuts a slab from a tree and uses it as a makeshift snowboard. Doyle uses his jetpack for the same purpose.
  • Shipper on Deck: Zak's entire family seems to ship him with Wadi. Fisk also shipped Zon with the Duah.
  • Shout-Out: The show's animation style is a Shout-Out to 1960s and 1970s animation. Visually, it hearkens back to Jonny Quest, The Herculoids, and Thundarr the Barbarian, as well as a lot of the action shows that came out of Hanna-Barbera.
    • V.V. Argost's full name is Vincent Vladislav, with the Vincent being taken from Vincent Price. His show, Weird World, is appears to reference Tales from the Crypt and Ripley's Believe It or Not!.
    • Since creator Jay Stephens hails from the world of comics, Van Rook appears to reference Iron Man, and Munya's transformation sequence is reminiscent of the Hulk.
    • The show makes several references to its contemporary, Ben 10. Animo, Enoch and Hex can be seen in the Saturday criminal database, and Beeman swears by "sweet Galvan Prime" in "Guess Who's Going to be Dinner?"
  • Single-Specimen Species: Many of the cryptids appear to be this, or else have incredibly low population numbers. This may point to a more mystical origin for cryptids as opposed to normal animals.
  • Shown Their Work: So much so, it has its own page!
  • Show Within a Show: V.V. Argost's Weird World.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Drew delivers a very nice one in the Season 2 finale to Argost when he attempts to call a truce.
  • Sickly Green Glow: Zak Monday's powers glow green, in contrast to Zak's orange, and they whip cryptids into a psychotic, violent frenzy.
  • Snake People: The naga are humanoid on top, snake on the bottom.
  • Soul Jar: The Kur Stone was actually a vessel for Kur's essence, which jumped to the nearest unborn creature - Zak - when it was unearthed.
  • Space Is Cold: Doc flies a jet fighter into space, which freezes on the way up. He shatters the ice on the nose as he leaves the cockpit. When he gets back, the now-exposed cockpit is frozen over, as is the spot he had cleared before.
  • Spectacular Spinning: The holograms studied by the Saturdays spin in one plane.
  • Speech-Impaired Animal: Fiskerton, whose grunts are sometimes clear English, sometimes unintelligible.
  • Spot the Imposter: Zak immediately starts looking for any subtle differences between his mom and her Evil Doppelgänger... and fails. The Drew next to him gets impatient, grabs the Claw, and shoots it at the other Drew, only to have the second Drew deflect it with her prehensile tongue. When Zak asks her how she knew the fake Drew would do that, Drew responds that she didn't - she just wanted to hit her in the face.
  • Spy Catsuit: It's easier to count how many women aren't wearing one of these.
  • Sssssnake Talk: Rani Nagi draws out her S's and intersperses her dialogue with hisses.
  • Stern Chase: In Season 2, Zak and his family are on the run from the Secret Scientists. Because the Scientists have global connections and an incredible intelligence network, the family can never stay in one place for long.
  • Stock Footage: Munya's Transformation Sequence.
  • Stylish Protection Gear: The Saturdays have matching arctic survival outfits. While they mostly favor function over form, Komodo's has a fluffy pom-pom on the tail.
  • Summoning Artifact: Ulraj's amulet can summon the Breath of Kur.
  • Taken During the Ending: In Season 2 "The Legend of Garuda", when the Saturdays, the Secret Scientists, and the Nagas temporarily team up to stop Gokul from killing Zak to kill Kur by using the Flute of Gilgamesh for his ritual, they succeed in stopping Gokul but he escapes and they believe he took the flute with him. After everyone part ways, it turns out the flute was left behind at the ritual site and Argo shows up at the end to take the flute for himself. He would later use the flute in "And Your Enemies Closer".
  • Team Pet: Played straight by Komodo and Zon, who are like a dog and horse respectively, but subverted by Fisk, who has human-level intelligence and is treated more like Zak's younger brother. Argost even lampshades it.
    Argost: I must confess: I always assumed your role on Team Saturday was as a kind of imbecile mascot. Such hidden depths in you...
  • Terror-dactyl:
    • Zon is a downplayed example. She's a Tropeognathus with some glaring inaccuracies (she can walk bipedally, her wing membranes end at her hips rather than going down to her feet, she looks hairless apart from a mane-like crest), and is initially hostile toward the Saturdays when they destroy her nest, but Zak manages to tame her and she becomes a friendly family member.
    • The Duah is a straight example, a vicious pterosaur-like monster with bat-like wings, a mostly scaly body (apart from a ruff around his neck), a toothy beak combined with a short crest, and a long reptilian tail. Zon still finds him attractive.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: Zak invokes this as a ploy to get Rani Nagi to let him into the naga's home so he can steal the Flute of Gilgamesh. He also almost does this for real after nearly crossing the Despair Event Horizon in "The Return of Tsul'Kalu.
  • Throw Down the Bomblet: Doyle's attack of choice is usually a shower of concussion grenades.
  • Title In: Every time the location changes.
  • Time Skip: Six months take place between Season 1 and Season 2. In that time, the Secret Scientists have caught wind that Zak is Kur and are chasing the Saturdays down in order to put Zak in cryogenic stasis until they can find a solution. Argost has also been missing all this time, presumed dead, with Doyle working solo to track him down if he is alive. And finally, Van Rook had his business stolen by Abbey Grey, and is now broke and out of shape.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Drew throws her fire sword in "The King of Kumari Kandam" to cut down several ziplines.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Zak is Kur.
  • Tomato Surprise: Argost is actually a cryptid. And not just any cryptid, but the yeti that killed Drew's parents and separated her from her brother. Naturally, Zak learns this about five seconds after Argost becomes immune to his powers, a fact which Argost wastes no time taunting him about.
  • Torches and Pitchforks: "The Kur Guardian", Fiskerton winds up on the receiving end after he spooks the town he was living near.
  • Town with a Dark Secret: Sanctuary 2 seems like a successful utopian experiment, until it's revealed that they derive their electricity by painfully funneling it out of a lau.
    • The city in "The Owlman Feeds At Midnight" is very pushy about getting the Saturdays to stop investigating the town's disappearances and leave...because it turns out they've all been brainwashed into the titular owlman's personal cult.
  • Transformation Sequence: Argost's manservant Munya has DNA injectors filled with Papuan giant spider DNA. At will, he can transform into a hulking humanoid spider monster, accompanied by a grotesque sequence in which spider legs burst out of his back and his skin turns red.
  • Train Stopping: Fiskerton has to stop a runaway train before it smashes into the end of an unfinished tunnel in "Target: Fiskerton." He uses Munya's webbing to grab hold of the rear of the train and digs his feet in, snapping sleepers as he goes.
  • Tricked-Out Gloves: Doc fights with a Battle Glove, which is able to amplify the kinetic force of his blows. It also has several other functions, including freezing, heating, shocking, and sonic vibrations.
  • Uncanny Family Resemblance: Drew and Doyle look almost exactly the same as, respectively, their mother and father. In fact, Drew becomes convinced that Doyle is her long-lost brother because seeing his face for the first time was just like looking at her old man's.
  • Unhand Them, Villain!: In "The Vengeance of Hibagon", Professor Mizuki is holding a crimelord over the edge of a building when Drew shouts at him to "let him go."
    Mizuki: A very poor choice of words. [He lets the crimelord fall.]
  • The Unintelligible: Fiskerton. Word of God has confirmed that his voice actor does have an English script for what Fisk is saying, which is then translated by the VA into 'Fisk-speak.' Sometimes it's possible to make out a word or two, but for the most part it's unintelligible. Subverted in-universe; while most characters have as much trouble understanding him as the audience, Zak has no trouble understanding him at all, probably owing to his cryptid powers.
  • Unnecessary Combat Roll: Zak does one in the first episode, jumping into the room with a somersault.
  • Vapor Trail: Happens when Doyl's jetpack springs a leak in "Cryptid vs. Cryptid."
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Argost's TV show, Weird World, is so beloved world-wide that townspeople will actively throw garbage at the Saturdays when the Saturdays start fighting him in public. When he disappears during the six-month Time Skip, his fans are so dedicated that they've been graffitiing anything they can get their hands on with "Argost Lives"...including the Saturdays' airship.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Argost quickly loses his cool whenever he starts losing. When Zak defeats him in the Season 1 finale, Argost is willing to throw away his own well-being in an effort to get petty revenge on the Saturdays, and it takes Munya defying orders and fleeing with him to keep him from going through with it. In Season 2, when he starts losing the cryptid war against Zak, Rani Nagi takes advantage of his resulting breakdown to convince him to change goals from ruling humanity to destroying them.
  • Visible Invisibility: The family's pet komodo dragon can turn invisible, which is portrayed to the viewer as white line art with a shimmery blue-white transparent fill.
  • Weakened by the Light: In "The Owlman Feeds at Midnight", the titular Monster of the Week really doesn't like fire or bright light. The Saturdays use this to try and subdue it, but Doyle ends up giving it too much light when he resorts to bringing a jetpack into the mix and ends up vaporizing it.
  • We Are Not Going Through That Again: No, Doc's not going to turn around to look at the migas rising out of the water after his family survives Weird World. It's over. They've won.
  • We Have the Keys: Argost blows down a door as part of a Weird World episode, with Munya being the one to approach with the keys and a long-suffering expression afterwards. Of course, this is all just part of the show.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: In Season 2, the Secret Scientists decide that the best way to deal with the Kur problem is to cryogenically freeze Zak indefinitely, until they can find a solution. This is eclipsed only by Gokul of the Legion of Garuda deciding the best method is to tear Kur's soul out of Zak's body, a process which will also kill Zak.
  • Wham Episode:
    • "Cryptid Vs. Cryptid." The episode ends with Argost having plundered the tomb of Kur, only to find a bas relief of Fiskerton's species at the bottom.
    • "And Your Enemies Closer". Argost finally makes his move, kidnapping Zak, summoning Zak Monday, and stealing Zak Monday's powers, which kills him in the process. This finally culminates in the reveal that Argost is a cryptid himself, (the Yeti no less) five seconds after it would have been useful for Zak to know. The episode ends with both sides gearing up for an all-out war.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Owing to the extremely rushed ending, many loose ends are left untied.
    • What became of Francis after he let Zak go?
    • What became of Beeman and the Saturday's relationship with the Secret Scientists?
    • What happens to Rani Nagi, now that there's no Kur for her and her people to follow?
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Fiskerton is treated like Zak's younger brother, but Komodo, who has at one point been seen flying a jet, is treated like the family's pet dog.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Zak gets one from Argost, who points out how he's lied to and betrayed his parents in order to keep his deal with Argost secret. The "lesson" ends with the moral that Kur is a monster, and Zak is on his way.
  • Wicked Cultured: Argost, who has impeccable manners, an appreciation of the French language, and is incredibly, incredibly evil.
  • Wiper Start: In "The Atlas Pin", Fiskerton attempts to pilot the airship by randomly mashing buttons. He succeeds in turning on the seat massager and launching a missile.
  • You Called Me "X"; It Must Be Serious: Van Rook is never called anything but Van Rook by the heroes until he is mortally wounded while taking a fireball meant for Drew. Drew then calls him by his first name, Leonidas.
  • You Killed My Father: Ulraj attempts to avenge his father by destroying Argost, but realizes that it'd require crossing a line he isn't willing to cross and backs out.
    • Drew and Doyle need to be talked down from pursuing Argost past the Moral Event Horizon by Zak once they learn that he killed their parents.
    • Rani Nagi tries to invoke this in Zak by leaving his parents to die at the hands of the Secret Scientists. This is after she promises to help them out.
      Rani Nagi: Leave [his parents] to their fate. Give the boy a tragedy to avenge.
  • Your Mom:
    Doyle: Hey, anytime you wanna see my terminal velocity, just ask.
    Doc: Wh — even your threats have bad science!
    Doyle: Your mom has bad science.
  • Yowies and Bunyips and Drop Bears, Oh My: Bunyips feature in "Into the Mouth of Darkness".

Tropes in the crossover episode:

  • Back from the Dead: Argost. Oh, don't act surprised.
  • Brought Down to Normal: Zak's is reversed thanks to residual Kur energy, albeit weaker than before.
  • Came Back Strong: When Dr. Animo brings Argost back to life in the crossover, he's been turned into a Cryptid chimera capable of taking Zak, Ben, Rook, and an army of Plumbers in a fight.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Turns out Zak isn't much of a match for an intelligent, superpowered hybrid monster.
  • Flanderization: In the show, Doc and Drew's disagreements about science and magic are generally civil. Doc is fully aware the existence and effectiveness of magic; he mostly takes issue with jumping to mystic conclusions before the scientific explanations have been ruled out. Here he scoffs as Drew for even trying a magical solution to a problem he hasn't been able to solve with science.
  • Genius Bruiser: Fiskerton demonstrates an understanding of quantum physics and then trounces Munya in a fight, all in the span of one scene.
  • The Greatest Story Never Told: Zak briefly laments that his world-saving goes unnoticed since cryptids must remain a secret, but recognizes that it's better they stay that way given how people like Dr. Animo would exploit them.
  • Idiot Ball: In the series proper, Argost is highly cautious, and spent six months recovering and preparing himself after being beaten the first time. Here, the first thing he does after being revived is to randomly attack Undertown, immediately drawing attention to himself. Even Animo points out that was a bad idea.
  • Hand Wave: Animo and Argost's Villain Team-Up is said to have happened due to the latter being prepared for his death, and hiring the former to resurrect him.
  • Hybrid Monster: Dr. Animo blends a bunch of cryptids into dragon-esque cyborgs. Argost is likewise given a few improvements.
  • Killed Off for Real: Ben straight up kills Argost, which is odd for a kid's show that usually adheres to Thou Shalt Not Kill. Guess it's okay if they were dead at the beginning of the episode.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: Hope you finished season 2, or you're in for some surprises.
  • Latex Perfection: Averted. Argost's mask is so obviously fake, it's baffling that anyone could have ever thought that it was his actual face.
  • Mistaken Identity: The Saturdays briefly confuse Shocksquatch for an actual sasquatch.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Ben's remarks about Zak's telepathy might be a reference to the fact that Ben has two aliens that have a natural capacity for telepathy (Ghostfreak and AMPhibian) that Ben hasn't bothered to learn how to use.
    • Argost says that his resurrection was supposed to take six months, the same length of time as the time span between season one and two.
  • Power Echoes: Zak's telepathy.
  • Punctuated Pounding: Fiskerton pounds Munya back and forth on one of his webs like a paddle-ball.
  • Retcon: Turns out Zak's powers weren't really gone in the series finale; thanks to "residual energy" they came back a few months later, although much weaker.
  • Taken for Granite: The victims of the life-draining cyborg chupacabras are turned to stone, though it's only skin deep and they are alive beneath that.
  • Technobabble: The explanation for how Zak retained his powers and Argost was susceptible to resurrection.
  • Time Skip: It's mentioned that three years have passed since the last episode, just like in real-life.
  • White Hair, Black Heart: Argost's hair is snow-white, and he's the most evil character on the show by far.
  • You Don't Look Like You: The transition from this show to Ben 10 Omniverse came with a rather noticeable change in style, far too much to excuse it as being merely a timeskip.
    • Special mention goes to Drew's fire sword. It looks and behaves like a piece of technology mimicking the effects of Doc's power glove, rather than a mystical Tibetan artifact that produces fire.
    • Heck, special mention to Drew herself. She went from looking like an attractive but mature adult old enough to have a child to looking almost as young as her son.


Video Example(s):


Kur Revealed

In the final scene of the season finale, the Saturdays learn that Kur isn't the giant cryptid they just fought, but actually ZAK!

How well does it match the trope?

4.88 (26 votes)

Example of:

Main / TomatoInTheMirror

Media sources: