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Western Animation / Uncle Grandpa

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"Let me get this straight. He's my uncle, and my grandpa?"
"No. He's everyone in the world's uncle and grandpa, and when he comes to visit, it's sure to be a time you'll never forget!"

Okay, so what happens when you take the zany artwork of Don Martin-era MAD, throw in visual gags and slapstick that would make the Golden Age animators shed tears of pride, add a spoonful of heavy metal, and then contaminate the batch with large portions of pure, undiluted weirdness?

What you're left with is Uncle Grandpa, a Cartoon Network original concerning the larger-than-life adventures of an Crazy Is Cool Reality Warper who, as the above quote implies, is the uncle and grandfather of everyone in the world (don't ask).

A typical plot would start with Uncle Grandpa traveling in his RV like a madman, usually crashing into the homes of disgruntled youths. To them Uncle Grandpa is nothing but a bumbling nuisance in rainbow suspenders and an insanely portable fannypack... ahem, "Belly Bag", but it's only when events start to blow out of proportion (usually the result of his attempts to win them over) that the Let's Get Dangerous! side of Uncle Grandpa springs into action. Together with the help of a pizza slice, a green lizard man and a giant realistic flying tiger (again, don't ask), he and his young companion-of-the-week embroil in an epic battle, and once the day has been saved, our protagonist has gained a great deal of respect for their Uncle Grandpa, only to find that he has already left the scene, ready to spread his magic upon the lives of other unsuspecting folk:

"That's your Uncle Grandpa for ya. Drops in, shows you a good time, and then you never see him again. Just like your father."

Peter Browngardt originally pitched Uncle Grandpa in 2008 for the cancelled animated shorts vehicle Cartoonstitute (the same project which spawned Regular Show). When the finished cartoon was released through the Cartoon Network website, it quickly became a word-of-mouth hit within the animation community, eventually going on to be nominated for an Emmy.

The character then went through a couple of years of Development Hell, only to reemerge on an episode of the equally surreal Secret Mountain Fort Awesome (also by Browngardt). When SMFA got axed Browngardt decided to switch gears and focus back on Uncle Grandpa, expanding its cast of characters and retooling it as a Variety Show, with almost each episode backed up by a short B-story that sometimes given other characters created by the crew their chance to shine. He succeeded, and the show eventually premiered in September 2013 much to the delight of fans of the original shorts. Even The Golden Age of Animation purist John Kricfalusi seems to have been pumped for the show judging by these sketches. The last episode of the series was aired on June 30, 2017.

Is in no way related to "Grunkle" Stan Pines.

Uncle Grandpa contains examples of:

  • Acquired Situational Narcissism: In "Duck Lips", Uncle Grandpa helps a girl get plump lips. She then gets self-absorbed, interested only in posting selfies and getting likes. Then her duck lips start attracting ducks who think she's one of them, and in the end learns to just be herself.
    • In "King Gus", Mister Gus is declared king of the food court and the power quickly goes to his head. He has Uncle Grandpa, as the "King's Hand", arrest all those who displease him.
  • Action Girl: Giant Realistic Flying Tiger is a perfect mix of feminine beauty and deadly power.
  • A Dog Ate My Homework: "Uncle Grandpa Ate My Homework".
  • A Dog Named "Dog": Giant Realistic Flying Tiger, Pizza Steve, Hot Dog Person, and Uncle Grandpa.
  • All Animals Are Domesticated: Giant Realistic Flying Tiger.
  • Ambiguous Situation: invokedWord of God is that each episode is written so that "at the end, you don't know if he's an idiot or a genius."
  • Ambiguous Syntax: In one skit Uncle Grandpa asks Mr. Gus, Pizza Steve, and Giant Realistic Flying Tiger if they know how to play the drums, the bugle, and the keyboard, respectively. They reply that they don't and proceed to play terribly, then Uncle Grandpa comments that they do know how to play; he was asking them if they know how to physically use their instruments, not if they were any good with them.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism / Hypocritical Humor: Mr. Gus in "Aunt Grandma" says it doesn't make any sense for someone to be both everyone's aunt and everyone's grandma, even though it's just a female equivalent of what Uncle Grandpa is. He also refuses to believe it when Pizza Steve tells him that he was robbed by elves in "Vacation", and he's pretty adamant that the hidden treasure in "Treasure Map" isn't real (though that's probably because in both cases all the evidence had obvious mundane explanations. Plus Pizza Steve lies to him almost constantly).
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Evil Wizard contemplates if he should demolish a pet store, set fire to an orphanage, destroy the planet, or mess with Eddie.
  • Art Evolution / Animation Bump: The background designs get revamped with each passing season. Compare the flat, comic book look of the first season with the more textured, painterly style of the later episodes.
  • Animation Evolution: While the show's animation is known to already be more fluid than a lot of cartoons in its era, the later seasons' episodes have a lot smoother and more experimental animation. Some good examples are "Ballroom", "Dinosaur Day", and "Uncle Baseball". The better animation helps the uniquely-boarded episodes by artists like Nick Edwards, Andres Salaff, and Jason Reichter look very clean.
  • Art Shift: Night Wolf Land resembles an airbrushed t-shirt design (because it is).
    • Also, the two "Guest Directed Shorts" episodes are full of this trope.
  • As Himself:
    • The Nature Boy, Ric Flair in "History of Wrestling".
    • Shaquille O'Neal in "Perfect Kid"
    • Andrew W.K. in "Shower Party"
    • MC Hammer in "Land of the Lost Shadows"
    • Several MLB players in "Uncle Baseball"
    • Marky Ramone in "Late Night Good Morning with Uncle Grandpa"
    • Robert Rodriguez in "New Direction"
    • Buzz Osborne and Dale Crover in "Uncle Melvins"
    • Pete Browngardt (along with several members of the Uncle Grandpa crew) in "Cartoon Factory"
    • Tom Browngardt (picture editor) and Myke Chilian (writer/storyboard artist) in "Transitional Phrase"
  • Back for the Finale: Ham Sandwich, the ugly kid who appeared in the pilot, appears in the series finale.
  • Bag of Holding: Uncle Grandpa's talking belly bag/fanny pack.
  • Bait-and-Switch: The episode "The Fan" has Uncle Grandpa getting tricked into visiting the house of a Basement-Dweller fan, with said fan clearly being a little too obsessed with Uncle Grandpa. We then go to four months later, where Uncle Grandpa has become The Thing That Would Not Leave and the fan now getting increasingly annoyed by his antics.
  • Barbarian Longhair: Eric (Cupcake) gets this, as well as a Barbarian Body, after doing all those chores while fighting a Bush Dragon.
  • Base on Wheels: Uncle Grampa's RV.
  • Beary Funny: Beary Nice.
  • Berserk Button:
    • When the gang realizes they’ve been tricked, expect them to be super angry.
    • Do not call Pizza Steve a phony baloney in front of Uncle Grandpa. One of his students learned that the hard way in "Uncle Grandpa 101".
  • Bigger on the Inside: Uncle Grandpa's RV, which contains a gateway to multiple universes.
  • Big "NO!": Uncle Grandpa's reaction to having to wait in an incredibly long line in "Moustache Cream". It is overheard by a guy about to propose with his girlfriend.
  • Big Red Button: For whatever reason, the microwave in "Wasteland" has an extremely prominent red button labeled "Evil". Naturally, Uncle Grandpa accidentally presses it when he tries to microwave the talking leftovers he promised to eat, combining them into a giant food monster.
  • Black Comedy Burst: At the end of "The Lepre-Con" instead of Uncle Grandpa learning to get over his prejudice against leprechauns, he uses his wish from the Forest King to destroy them all.
  • Boring, but Practical: Unlike Uncle Grandpa's wacky ways, Aunt Grandma uses simple practical solutions to help children. Justified as she's not a Reality Warper, but a normal human.
  • Bowdlerise: UK airings of "Leg Wrestle" censor the Show Within the Show high school drama so it cuts back to Uncle Grandpa and Mr. Gus before the girls' faces melt off.
  • Brain with a Manual Control: Uncle Grandpa and Pizza Steve shrink into a kid's head and plug a controller into his brain to help him play video games. They mistake the real world for the game and send him all over the town.
  • Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: At the beginning of "Grounded", Riley's father is lecturing him on how if his grades don't improve, his only career choices will be flipping burgers, working at the auto parts store, or flipping burgers at the auto parts store.
  • Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: Take a look at some of the songs on Uncle Grandpa Sings the Classics - "Caught In My Curtain", "Too Much Paperwork", "Eyeball Fell Out".
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: "Viewer Special" is an entire episode where the scenery itself is composed of Fan Art, while Uncle Grandpa and company comment on how weird the episode is. A subversion occurs in that the episode is presented as a Show Within a Show, and one lucky viewer of the cartoon draws the episode by drawing his pen directly on his own TV screen.
    • The show gets more self-aware as it went on, especially with episodes like "Except for Cooper," "Uncle Baseball," and even dedicating to meta episodes "Cartoon Factory" and "Transitional Phrase."
  • Broke the Rating Scale: The A+++++-+ that Dennis gets in "Uncle Grandpa Ate My Homework".
  • Butt-Monkey: Hot Dog Person and Mr. Gus.
  • Carnivore Confusion:
    • In one episode, Pizza Steve is seen eating pizza.
    • "Prank Wars" has him end up in a pizza-eating competition, and the competitors try to eat him as a tiebreaker.
    • The post-episode gag in "Vacation" has Uncle Grandpa eating a normal-looking banana. After he leaves, a humanoid banana runs onto the screen and screams "My baby!"
  • Car Radio Dispute: An Overly-Long Gag version of this trope (as in, lasting for a whole segment) occurs between Mr. Gus and Pizza Steve in one segment. Mr. Gus's conclusion is that if Pizza Steve wants to listen to different music, then he should be the one to drive. Pizza Steve doesn't drive very well.
  • Catchphrase: A jovial "Good mornin'!" from the titular character. Heck, it's the only thing he says in his commercial.
  • Central Theme: Learning the joys of life.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • In "Jorts", Tiny Miracle attempts to help get Mr. Gus' embarrassing jorts off, but Mr. Gus decides it's taking too long and he'll do it himself. In the end, he comes to accept them. Then Tiny Miracle completes the task.
    • "Bad Morning" opens with Pizza Steve eating a breakfast which is so sugary that anyone who eats it will crash almost immediately. At the end, this turns out to be the key to getting Uncle Grandpa to go back to bed and get up on the right side.
    • "Sick Bag" has two: We see Pizza Steve staring at a mirror, and Mr. Gus making chicken soup for Belly Bag, who is sick. Later, the insect that caused Belly Bag's illness fires the laser hammer callously, and it goes out of Belly Bag, then bounces off Pizza Steve's mirror to go back and hit the web Uncle Grandpa was trapped in. Then, when Belly Bag drinks the soup, it floods the room where Uncle Grandpa is fighting the bug. Uncle Grandpa then uses two of the noodles to slice off the bug's limbs, at which point it deflates to death.
    • In "Food Truck", at the beginning, Mr. Gus is shown coughing because of the exhaust from Pizza Steve's motorcycle. Later, Pizza Steve accidentally turns the RV into a hamburger, which is then raided by hungry customers. Pizza Steve then has the idea to make the RV taste bad, which he does by coating parts of it in exhaust.
  • Cloneopoly: "Afraid of the Dark" had "Uncle Grandpa's Money Madness Spectacular", a parody of Monopoly complete with Uncle Grandpa being in the same pose as the latter's mascot.
  • Closer than They Appear: Spoofed in "Driver's Test". "Objects in mirror may be Uncle Grandpa". It Makes Sense In Context.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Uncle Grandpa hardly makes any sense... until he does. He once thought that the spelling of his name "Uncle Grandpa" was an imposter of him. Gus pointed out that it's only a spelling of his name, and he thinks it has magical spells, rushing off to find a way to deal with it.
  • The Cloudcuckoolander Was Right: In "Jorts", Uncle Grandpa sees a cactus and at first assumes it's an alien before Belly Bag corrects him. But when Uncle Grandpa pulls it out of the ground, it does indeed turn out to be an alien.
  • Continuity Nod: Christopher Columbus is arrested by the Time Police for wearing pants from the future in "1992 Called". In "Escalator", during the news report on the broken escalator, the words "Christopher Columbus escapes from Time Jail" can be seen on the reel.
  • Cool Shades: Averted with Pizza Steve, who only thinks he's cool.
  • Cool Uncle: Uncle Grandpa is the living embodiment of this trope.
  • Couch Gag: As of season 4, the original opening is replaced with Uncle Grandpa saying a different Non Sequitur every episode before it cuts to the show's logo.
  • Cranky Neighbor: Charlie Burgers lives next door to one.
  • Creator Cameo: The 'funny face' that follows Uncle Grandpa and friends around is the head of Pete Browngardt wearing a goofy wig and false teeth.
    • Browngardt's own high school yearbook photo appears in "Viewer Special".
    • Browngardt actually appeared as himself in "Cartoon Factory."
  • Creator Career Self-Deprecation: In "Cartoon Factory", Uncle Grandpa visits the titular factory to find out why he was made, and it's hyped up as a magical world of imagination... only to be shown as a series of ugly cubicles and offices. (Uncle Grandpa is still enamored, though.) Furthermore, it depicts the show's writers and storyboard artists as literal babies and monkeys throwing mud at the walls to come up with plot ideas, respectively.
  • Crossover: "Say Uncle", a crossover with Steven Universe in which Uncle Grandpa goes to Beach City to help Steven with his powers (using ordnance).
  • Cutting the Knot: Tiny Miracle's solution to opening a jar of hamburgers is to smash it on the floor. The others don't seem to mind, even though they're eating broken glass.
  • Dagwood Sandwich: The dinner sandwiches in "Space Emperor". It has a whole roast chicken in it, for goodness sakes!
  • Denial of Animality: Parodied in "Prison Break" when the aliens keep referring to Mr. Gus and Pizza Steve as humans, even when pointing out their decidedly inhuman features. Even Uncle Grandpa later says that the two look an awful lot like humans when they return to Earth.
  • Denser and Wackier: Especially when compared to most other shows on Cartoon Network nowadays (with the exception of Teen Titans Go!). On the show itself, most of the later episodes are a lot more focused on wacky adventures than Uncle Grandpa helping kids.
  • Demonic Dummy: In "Uncle Dummy", Mr. Gus takes up ventriloquism, but his dummy Leo is brought to life with Frankenstein juice and tries to kill him.
  • Department of Redundancy Department:
    • In "Uncle Grandpa Sitter", Pizza Steve says that his favorite ice cream flavors are strawberry, chocolate, double chocolate, fudge, chocolate fudge, and gorgonzola.
    • Uncle Grandpa's Story-Time Storybook of Stories.
  • Depending on the Artist: A few board artist had their distinct art style:
    • Nick Edwards (who draws the show's title cards) had the most unique art style. He tends to draw characters off-model, especially making Uncle Grandpa and Mr. Gus fatter than usual. Also, his writing style tends to make the show weirder than usual.
    • David Gemmill and Jason Reicher usually draw exaggerated faces from the characters, evident in episodes like "Ball Room", "Land of the Lost Shadows", and "Anger Management".
    • Andres Salaff (who worked on only season 5) had a strange way of drawing Uncle Grandpa, who looks wider.
  • Depth Deception: Used in one sketch where Uncle Grandpa, Pizza Steve and Mr. Gus are lost at sea (actually a giant bathtub) and they see a ship in the distance. The ship comes to them and turns out to be a bathtub toy.
  • Determinator: Uncle Grandpa never gives up on a kid, or his friends, as seen in "Space Emperor" and "Tiger Trails", respectively.
  • Distaff Counterpart: Aunt Grandma, a beautiful Hourglass Hottie female version of Uncle Grandpa. She's not nearly as weird and cloudcuckolanderish as UG normally acts and always gives children the practical solution. This is because she's a normal human with no powers.
  • Downer Ending: "Uncle Caveman" ends with Uncle Caveman making a snowcone machine that turns out to be way too powerful, wiping out the dinosaurs and causing the Ice Age.
    • The series finale seems to end this way.
  • Drives Like Crazy: Uncle Grandpa takes this to the Nth degree. In "Driver's Test", he teaches a girl how to drive crazy so she can get her driver's license.
    • Lampshaded in "Driver's Test":
      Uncle Grandpa: But do you know how to drive the Uncle Grandpa Way?
      Mary: You mean like on top of buildings and in outer space and stuff?
      Uncle Grandpa: No, no, no, no, no, no, no. Yes.
    • Justified in "Locked Out" which shows that the RV crashing is his signal that a kid nearby needs help achieving their dream.
  • Droste Image: In a short shown with "Inventor Mentor", Uncle Grandpa mounts a puppet show for Pizza Steve and Mister Gus, about a puppet show being watched by Pizza Steve and Mister Gus, which is about a puppet show being watched by Pizza Steve and Mister Gus. It was all a trap by a giant monster.
  • Dynamic Entry: Usually how Uncle Grandpa's van (driven by Uncle Grandpa) appears. Pizza Steve made one on a motorcycle in the van.
  • Easter Episode: In "Uncle Easter", the Easter Bunny tells Uncle Grandpa that he has no time to prepare for Easter because he has to wait eight hours for premium sports channels, so Uncle Grandpa has to deliver eggs for him.
  • Eating the Enemy:
    • In the episode "Uncle Grandpa Ate My Homework", Uncle Grandpa eats a boy's Egyptian diorama that he needed to pass his class. To make it up to him, Uncle Grandpa helps him get an actual pyramid from Egypt. But it breaks on the way back. Dennis decides to just tell his teacher what happened. At the same time, an evil mummy emerges from the pyramid and chases Uncle Grandpa all the way to Dennis's classroom. It catches U.G and Dennis, stating that he'll swallow them whole. Just then Dennis gets the idea to have him and Uncle Grandpa eat him first. They each put a bandage in their mouths and suck him up like spaghetti.
    • Speaking of spaghetti, one of Pizza Steve's tall tales has him fighting a giant spaghetti and meatball monster to the death. He puts up a good fight against the beast with his Italian Karate but it's to no avail. Just as the monster is about to stomp, he remembers a tip his master taught him and eats the spaghetti monster up.
  • Edible Theme Naming: Ham Sandwich, an obese nerdy boy who is one of Uncle Grandpa's many nephews and grandchildren.
  • Embarrassing Browser History: When Belly Bag is thrown into a garbage truck and hauled off to the dump as part of a board game, he pleads to the others "Please don't go through my web history!"
  • Enfant Terrible: The Crazy Baby from "Driver's Test".
  • Everyone Has Standards: In "Pal.0" Mr. Gus states that Pal's redecoration of the RV is boring even for him.
  • Everyone Is Related: He is related to everyone in the world.
  • Everything's Better with Rainbows: Giant Realistic Flying Tiger leaves a rainbow trail wherever she goes.
  • Evil Counterpart: Kid Cousin, G-Dog and Tony Pepperoni, the three basketball players from "Ballin". They even have a Scary Realistic Growling Pitbull.
  • Expressive Accessory: The buttons on Uncle Grandpa's pants sometimes express themselves like eyes for Belly Bag.
  • Extreme Omnivore: Uncle Grandpa ate a diorama of Ancient Egypt and an actual mummy.
  • Eye Scream:
    • In "Uncle Grandpa Sitter" when Uncle Grandpa insists that he doesn't need a babysitter, he sticks his finger in his eye and then removes said eye with it.
    • Double subverted in "Hide & Seek" when Uncle Grandpa looks for Mr. Gus in the salt shaker and the salt stops just above his eye, then he squirts a bottle of Blazing Inferno Hellfire Sauce in his eye and screams in pain.
    • In one skit where Uncle Grandpa is giving a (completely illogical) tutorial on how to draw him, he uses one of Mr. Gus's eyes to trace with.
    • In "1992 Called" Uncle Grandpa gives Christopher Columbus a pizza box, which he opens followed by Pizza Steve pepper spraying him.
    • Parodied in "Shower Party" where part of Uncle Grandpa's shower routine is shampooing his eyes with shampoo specially formulated for eyes.
  • Face on a Milk Carton: Uncle Grandpa first appears to Tommy as this in "New Kid".
  • Facial Horror: In the short following "Prison Break", Uncle Grandpa stares directly into the RV's headlights while they're on high, then turns to the camera showing that his face has been seared off and his eyes are gone.
  • Failed Attempt at Scaring: In the Halloween Episode "Haunted RV", Uncle Grandpa implants Frankenstein's brain into the RV's engine, turning it into a shapeshifting Haunted House so scary that it winds up becoming dangerous, the RV feeding off of the fear of others. They all manage to defeat it by removing their own brains, leaving their mindless bodies for it to try and fail to scare, sapping it of its power.
  • Fantastic Racism: According to "The Lepre Con", Uncle Grandpa hates leprechauns. In the end, he uses his wish from the Forest King to destroy all leprechauns.
  • "Fantastic Voyage" Plot: "Brain Game", where Uncle Grandpa and Pizza Steve go inside a boy's head to make him better at video games.
  • Fastball Special: In "Locked Out" when the UG-RV's self-destruct is activated and it grows arms, Uncle Grandpa cuts its lobster arm off by throwing Pizza Steve at it.
  • Fingore: In "Ballroom", Uncle Grandpa's fingers get dented in by a falling plate and later rolled over by a table.
  • Fire-Breathing Diner:
  • Foreshadowing: In "Aunt Grandma", where Uncle Grandpa says the titular character looks familiar. Lampshaded by Belly Bag, who tells him there's no time for foreshadowing. Turns out Aunt Grandma used to be a kid Uncle Grandpa helped, but resulted in her getting second place at a science fair.
  • Forgot About His Powers: Uncle Grandpa can be in two places at once, but still has to leave the driver's seat of the RV to get peanut butter, and his being in the same room as Emperor Krell is taken by a kid as proof that they're two separate people.
  • Freudian Excuse: Aunt Grandma's motivation for taking over Uncle Grandpa's job is that she was once a kid whose science project was ruined thanks to Uncle G. As an adult, she vowed to ruin Uncle G's career. Loses some impact since by 'ruined' she means 'got second place in the science fair'.
  • Friend to All Children: Uncle Grandpa, of course. There's not a child in the world he won't help.
  • Furry Reminder: In "Funny Face", Mr. Gus eats a bug in a very lizard-like way. In "Jorts", he describes something as "sliding off like a layer of skin in summer". In "Future Special", he mentions that he can regrow his tail.
  • Gag Series: Of the non sequitur kind.
  • Gainax Ending: "Locked Out" ends with the RV crew going on blind dates... with themselves. Granted, it's no weirder than anything else in the series.
  • Gentle Giant: Giant Realistic Flying Tiger.
  • Giving Up on Logic: At the end of "Treasure Map", Mr. Gus crashes through a sewer into the ship of a dolphin pirate who threatens to make him walk the plank if he can't answer what has no beginning, middle, or end, but touches every continent. He decides to embrace the weirdness and take Uncle Grandpa and Pizza Steve's suggestion to answer "Spaghetti fish sandwich", which it turns out was the correct answer.
  • Groin Attack: In "Bad Morning" Uncle Grandpa does this to Mr. Gus while they're driving up a skyscraper.
  • Hartman Hips: Pretty much every woman that isn't a little girl.
  • High-Pressure Emotion: Sometimes, usually accompanied with a kettle whistle sound effect.
  • Historical In-Joke: At the end of "Uncle Caveman", Uncle Caveman apparently causes the Ice Age.
  • Hypocritical Humour: In "Christmas Special":
    Uncle Grandpa: Santa's crazy! He's a crazy old man who flies around the world, breaking into children's homes and claiming to make them happy! That's all pretty stupid if you ask me!
    • Also in "Bad Morning", Uncle Grandpa goes out to save his Companion Cube rubber duck Email from an octopus. Turns out the octopus mistook Email for his lost son, and then his son finally appears and says "I do NOT look like Email!" and the top of his head is in the shape of a rubber duck. His father then denies ever thinking Email was his son.
    • From "Aunt Grandma":
      Mr. Gus: That name doesn't make any sense. How can you be someone's aunt and grandma?
  • Identical Stranger: Emperor Krell to Uncle Grandpa (At least headwise), which makes people think it's just a Paper-Thin Disguise. The jury's still out on whether or not it is.
  • Identity Amnesia: Averted in "Numb Skull." Pizza Steve hit Mr. Gus on the head during a comedy routine, and he became a redneck, but Mr. Gus wasn't really suffering from amnesia, and it was his cousin Nathan all along.
  • Impact Silhouette: When Uncle Grandpa crashes through a glass window, he leaves the perfect silhouette of a slim, sexy woman.
  • Intelligible Unintelligible: Giant Realistic Flying Tiger can only communicate by roaring and Uncle Grandpa can understand everything she says despite the length of her roars.
  • I Resemble That Remark!: In "Haunted RV", when a teenager calls Uncle Grandpa crazy, he replies "I'm not crazy! In fact, I'm the most normal guy I know" while he pulls his only tooth out and replaces it with one he pulled out of his nose.
  • Narcissist: Pizza Steve, according to his character profile. Imagine Johnny Bravo as a talking pizza slice.
  • Lame Pun Reaction: In "Uncle Grandpa Ate My Homework", Dennis's class collectively groans at Uncle Grandpa saying that things are "all wrapped up" after defeating the mummy.
  • Lampshade Hanging: While the song titles for Uncle Grandpa Sings the Classics are scrolling, one of them is called "Scrolling Song Titles".
  • LEGO Body Parts: One of Uncle Grandpa's special abilities is levitating his head onto different bodies.
  • Lightbulb Joke: The short "Uncle Grandpa Changes a Light Bulb" is an illustrated version of one.
    Pizza Steve: So, how many Uncle Grandpas did it take to change a lightbulb?
    Uncle Grandpa: (Spends a minute counting the army of Uncle Grandpas he created to change it.) ...One.
  • Lighter and Softer: In comparison to the original pilot and its' spin-off Secret Mountain Fort Awesome. Whilst still very surreal and cartoony, much of the grotesque artwork and risqué jokes of Pete Browngardt's previous work are almost completely absent here. The animation moves at a much smoother pace as well.
  • Logic Bomb: One of the songs on Uncle Grandpa Sings the Classics is called "Good Mornin' (All Night Long)".
  • Long-Runners: Not the show itself as it's only 5 seasons long, but one skit parodies this by showing the gang in the future where the show has ran for 100,000 episodes.
  • Makes Just as Much Sense in Context: If the description of pretty much everything about the show sounds completely random and insane, well, that's because the show is too. Just roll with it.
  • Manchild/One of the Kids: invokedWord of God has confirmed that Uncle Grandpa is one of these.
  • Massive Multiplayer Crossover/The Cameo: At the end of the episode "Pizza Eve", Uncle Grandpa hosts the Grampie Awards. The audience and nominees include many different Cartoon Network characters, including an encore appearance by Steven and the Gems, alongside Clarence and friends, Gumball, Finn and Jake, The Powerpuff Girls, Samurai Jack, Dexter and Dee Dee, and numerous others.
  • Medium Blending:
    • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger is a picture of a real tiger set in a cartoon world. "Tiger Trails" also used old footage from a movie of a guy dancing with a tiger for a gag.
    • "Funny Face" also has a realistic head with goofy glasses, goofy mustache and making goofy faces.
    • In Aunt Grandma's backstory flashback, her room has a live-action poster of Bill Clinton.
  • Me's a Crowd: Uncle Grandpa is able to make copies of himself. Sometimes they appear from Behind the Black, sometimes they pop out of Uncle Grandpa himself.
  • Miles Gloriosus: Pizza Steve.
  • Mind Screw: Not just everything Uncle Grandpa does, but the entire show.
  • Mistaken for Brooding: In "Tiger Trails", Uncle Grandpa can't find Giant Realistic Flying Tiger, so he fears that she has run away because her feelings were hurt when he forgot to say good morning to her. When Tiger is found, it's revealed that she was never hurt and that she just sneaked out to explore when UG left the door open.
  • Mood Whiplash: "The Lepre-Con" ends with Uncle Grandpa wishing for the extinction of all leprechauns, trapping a leprechaun in a glass orb and smashing it to pieces. Wait, what?!?
  • Mundane Made Awesome: From helping a kid picking out a shirt, to changing a lightbulb, you can guarantee that if Uncle Grandpa is involved, a boring task is never quite so boring.
  • Mundane Utility: Among his office supplies tucked away in his belly bag is a flaming blue sword that he uses as a letter opener.
  • Mundane Solution: Subverted in every scenario. When a character mentions one of these, Uncle Grandpa will counter it, and for some strange reason, it WORKS.
    • "Charlie Burgers": Twice. The first time, the gang is trying to figure out how to get a ball from the roof of a neighbor's house. Mr.Gus suggests they fly Giant Realistic Flying Tiger, but Uncle grandpa neglects, saying that she's taking a shower, and uses a gravity-changing switch to turn the world upside down. The second time, Charlie burgers is flying towards a black hole. Mr.Gus suggests they flip the switch again and let gravity bring him back, but Uncle Grandpa neglects again, saying that gravity's just a theory.
    • "Ballroom": when Uncle Grandpa and Pizza Steve play with a ball, it bounces into the ballroom. (which Mr.Gus told them not to set foot in) Pizza Steve suggests that Mr.Gus won't see it, but Uncle Grandpa convinces him otherwise, even though it's behind a plate.
  • Never Say "Die":
    • Averted when Uncle Grandpa mentions a funny face will cause them to die of laughter.
    • And again when they follow the missing Giant Realistic Flying Tiger's trail to the pet cemetery, making Uncle Grandpa think she died of grief at not getting a salutation from UG that morning.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: Giant Realistic Flying Tiger.
  • Nice Guy: Uncle Grandpa. Beary Nice is even sickeningly so.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: English Muffinz is clearly a parody of Justin Bieber, but he's English instead of Canadian, which might also make him a parody of One Direction.
  • Non-Standard Character Design: Giant Flying Realistic Tiger is of course, a picture of an actual tiger.
  • Noodle Incident: Belly Bag claims in one episode that all ladies like him, with the possible exception of one living in Cleveland.
  • The Noseless: Belly Bag. But he can borrow Uncle Grandpa's nose.
  • Not Hyperbole: In "RV Olympics", Pizza Steve says that Uncle Grandpa can't tell the difference between a banana and a microphone. Sure enough, Uncle Grandpa is shown talking into a banana as if it were a microphone, then he pulls an actual microphone out of his lunch bag and eats it after removing an imaginary peel from it.
  • Not-So-Imaginary Friend: "You Talkin' to Tree?" has the tree in the RV talking to Uncle Grandpa, but shutting up whenever the others are around, making them think UG has finally lost it. It turns out there was a crook hiding inside the tree, tricking Uncle Grandpa into committing his crimes for him. After the crook is caught, Uncle G laughs off the notion of trees being able to talk. Then the tree says, "What a day!"
  • Notzilla: Mr. Gus looks a lot like a smaller version of Godzilla.
  • Odd Couple: Compare the bragging, self-absorbed Pizza Steve with the laconic, cynical Mr. Gus.
  • Off-Model:
    • Nick Edwards and Andres Salaff's styles stood out the most out of the storyboard artists.
    • Some of the Cartoon Network characters that made guest appearances in "Pizza Eve", particularly Mordecai and Rigby (who look a bit shorter and fatter than usual), Dexter (whose signature glasses have much thinner rims), and Sumo (who has very thick eyelashes for unknown reasons).
    • Done deliberately in the "Oatmeal" skit.
  • Only Sane Man: Mr. Gus. "Embracing the weird" is not one of his strong suits.
  • On the Next: Played with in "Fishing with Uncle Grandpa".
  • Our Dragons Are Different: The Bush Dragon in "Nickname".
  • Our Monsters Are Different:
    • Three Words: Hot Dog Monster.
    • Also the Radiated Mustache Monster in "Mustache Cream"
  • Panthera Awesome: Giant Realistic Flying Tiger.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Uncle Grandpa only recognizes Aunt Grandma as a former child he used to help when she takes off her tiny propeller hat.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Mr. Gus.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Pizza Steve, specifically in "Mustache Cream", where he's hold a giant Mustache Monster with Mr. Gus, and is actually doing a good job at it.
  • Plot-Sensitive Button: Much in the same vein as Megas XLR, Uncle Grandpa's RV's gear shifter has more than just Park, Drive, and Reverse.
    Park > Drive > Reverse > Flip > Up > Plaid > Apple Pie > Nuts > Turbo > Explode > Implode > CRAZY BABY
  • Portal Painting: Uncle Grandpa once accidentally created one. It was a T-shirt design rather than a painting, but still.
  • Raising the Steaks: "Tiger Trails" features black belt zombie pets. One of them is a pet rock.
  • Reality Warper: He gives Haruhi Suzumiya a run for her money. Being able to do almost anything, there's no telling just how he'll solve a problem. Sometimes it seems like he doesn't alter reality so much as reality conforms to his desires.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Mr. Gus is at least 1.993 billion years old as shown in "Jorts", and Uncle Grandpa is even older according to "Uncle Grandpa Sitter" and "Uncle Caveman".
  • Rule of Funny: All common sense and logic has been thrown out the window in the name of this trope.
  • Scary Stinging Swarm:
    • Hot Dog Person has an unpleasant experience with one whilst about to try his first ice cream.
    • In "Nickname", Eric pulls out a stump, which contains a hive under it.
  • Seen It All:
    • Mr. Gus is a dinosaur person who has seen everything in his billion plus years on planet Earth, so nothing ever fazes him.
    • Uncle Grandpa himself is such a Weirdness Magnet (when he's not the direct cause of the weirdness) that not even the most bizarre events ever catch him off guard or prompt anything more than an "uh-oh" from him. Not that that makes him enjoy them any less.
  • Self-Deprecation: On at least two occasions. Once in "Aunt Grandma", where Mr. Gus questions how someone can be everyone in the world's aunt AND grandma, and again in "Christmas Special", where Uncle Grandpa calls Santa a "creepy old man who flies around the world, breaking into children's homes claiming to make them happy".
  • Serious Business: Saying "good morning", evidently, for Uncle Grandpa. In "Tiger Trails", he believes that not saying it to Giant Realistic Flying Tiger is what caused her to run away.
  • Shockingly Expensive Bill: In "Treasure Map" the gang get hit with this from the restaurant they were at due to Giant Realistic Flying Tiger drinking a massive amount of smoothies while the others were on their treasure hunt.
    • In "Dog Day" Sandy's father gets charged $80,000 from the hospital he was taken to (appropriately named St. Scam-You). Fortunately, Uncle Grandpa covers him for it.
    • In "Date With Gus" Mr. Gus gets charged $5,035 at a restaurant, but most of it is for the damages that Uncle Grandpa and Pizza Steve caused to the building.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Simple Solution Won't Work: In "Charlie Burgers", when the titular character of the episode, who is a talking dog, gets his ball stuck on Angryman Johnson's roof, Uncle Grandpa's solution to get his ball is to turn the world upside down and have it fall off the roof. When Gus asks why don't they just ask Giant Realistic Flying Tiger to fly up to the roof and get the ball, Uncle Grandpa said she's in the shower and you should never disturb a lady during bath time. After turning the world upside down and Charlie's ball ends up heading towards a black hole with Charlie following it, Gus asks why don't they just have the world turn back the way it was and have gravity pull Charlie back, Uncle Grandpa said gravity is just a theory and decides to call Giant Realistic Flying Tiger to help them because this is a real emergency.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: Creator Peter Browngardt said in an interview Uncle Grandpa is there to show you how awesome life is. That makes this show incredibly idealistic.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Pizza Steve.
    • Pizza Steve's father Nacho Cheese is the same, only unlike Pizza Steve he has the excuse of actually being as talented as he claims to be.
  • Social Media Is Bad: The "Duck Lips" episode deals with a girl who's obsessed with making friends and followers on social media. She tries to follow all the current trends and conform to social standards of female beauty. When she takes a selfie of her "duck lips", it permanently freezes her face like that until she learns to accept herself and stop trying to be popular through trends.
  • Spin-Off: A unique case of a double subversion. Uncle Grandpa started out as the star of his own pilot, then he was spun off into Secret Mountain Fort Awesome, then he was spun off again... Back into his own series.
  • Spin-Off Babies: Parodied with the Uncle Grandpa Babies short at the end of "Grounded", which later became its own episode.
  • Spiritual Successor: To The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy in terms of No Fourth Wall and frequent references to other Cartoon Network shows. They even shared the same joke of the show's writing staff being literal babies and monkeys.
  • Stable Time Loop:
    • Apparently, when Uncle Grandpa was a kid (he still had his mustache back then), he was picked on for having a fat belly. His present self popped up and told him that it's cool to have a belly. All of this happened inside his own memories, thus he altered the past while he was remembering it.
    • In the first guest-directed short, Uncle Grandpa meets a weird-looking time traveler who asks him to watch his time machine, and of course Uncle Grandpa takes it for a joyride. When he cranks it too high, he ends up turning inside out and becoming the time traveler, then travels back to the beginning of the short and asks the next Uncle Grandpa to watch the time machine.
    • In "The Package", the titular package turns out to hold duplicates of Uncle Grandpa, Belly Bag, Mr. Gus and Pizza Steve, who are now infuriated that they spent all that time trying to open it only to find themselves in it. The new ones shove the old ones into the box to cool down and tape it shut before they notice the box and the cycle restarts.
    • In "Future Pizza", a wounded Uncle Grandpa comes back from the future to warn Pizza Steve that something in the near future will cause Uncle Grandpa to lose all respect for Pizza Steve, but refuses to say what because that would violate all the laws of time travel. Pizza Steve spends the episode frantically trying to prevent this, and just when it seems like he's succeeded, he asks if Uncle Grandpa has lost all respect for him. Uncle Grandpa is so offended by the idea that he could lose all respect for Pizza Steve that he loses all respect for Pizza Steve and goes back in time to warn Pizza Steve not to ask him that question.
  • St. Patrick's Day Episode: In "The Lepre-Con," which takes place in Ireland around St. Patrick's Day, Uncle Grandpa is deceived by a leprechaun just to get the gold he craves.
  • Surreal Humor: YES
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial:
    • Uncle Grandpa, when asked why Emperor Krell looks like him:
      Uncle Grandpa: Can't hear you, going through a portal.
    • He also says this earlier when he tells Melvin's babysitter he ran off, then spills the truth about sending him to another dimension, only for her to be confused by it as he says the above.
  • Take That!:
    • In "Older", Billy's mom tells him that he's too young to watch violent movies, and suggests he watch that show with the pink and purple horsies. Billy responds with this:
      But mom, that show is for little girls and twisted weirdos!
      • "Pony Tale" takes this even further. The entire episode is an extended Take That toward MLP FIM.
    • "Internet Troll" could be seen as one against critics of the show.
    • "The Grampies" at the end of "Pizza Eve" could be seen as a Take That toward Nickelodeon and their Kids' Choice Awards, with Uncle Grandpa managing to sweep every single category (like SpongeBob SquarePants often does, leading to rumors of rigging), including "Best Steven Universe Episode", as well as how Nickelodeon often treats their shows that aren't SpongeBob or some other invokedCash-Cow Franchise, as Uncle Grandpa informs all the characters in the audience (all of them existing CN characters) that their shows have been cancelled.
  • Taken for Granite: Happens in "Internet Troll" to the troll. Since real trolls turn to stone when exposed to sunlight, the same happens to internet trolls when exposed to the internet. So Uncle Grandpa posts a video of the troll, and with each negative comment it gets the troll slowly turns to stone.
  • Third-Person Person: Pizza Steve.
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: The one time one of Beary Nice and Hot Dog Person's adventures works out well for the latter is when they go to the gym and he ends up using an overly-complicated exercise machine (a la what Rocko uses in the Rocko's Modern Life episode "No Pain, No Gain") that leaves him quite muscular.
  • Time Police: Named as such. In "1992 Called", Uncle Grandpa calls in the Time Police himself to resolve an otherwise untenable situation involving Christopher Columbus' refusal to return a pair of time-displaced parachute pants.
  • Troll: Uncle Grandpa deals with one in "Internet Troll". Throughout, he thinks it means an actual troll, but when he meets him, it turns out to be a boy, who is really a troll in disguise.
  • True Companions: Uncle Grandpa, Gus, Pizza Steve, Belly Bag, and Giant Realistic Flying Tiger.
  • Uncle Grandpa Can Breathe In Space: In this show, anyone can. Ironically lampshaded when he tells a kid to hold his breath when they travel to Mars.
  • Valley Girl: The babysitter from "Space Emperor".
  • Verbal Tic: Uncle Grandpa's catchphrase "good morning". In the opening titles alone he says it five times in a row.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: Belly Bag gets one in "Mustache Cream". Since he's a Bag of Holding, he vomits junk.
  • Wacky Racing: In the special half-hour episode "Uncle Grandpa Retires". Even features a cameo from Dick Dastardly and Muttley.
  • Walking the Earth: Or driving it rather.
  • Wanton Cruelty to the Common Comma: Played for laughs: In "The Return of Aunt Grandma", Uncle Grandpa walks by a TV store with a sign reading "Toms TV's".
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: In "Tiger Trails", Uncle Grandpa and Caleb are battling the Evil Wizard in outer space, when U.G. notices Giant Realistic Flying Tiger is missing, so he goes looking for her, while the last known mention of Caleb is in a Brick Joke where he's still fighting the Evil Wizard by himself while waiting for U.G. to return...
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?:
    • Averted in "Charlie Burgers". Even though Charlie Burgers is a talking dog, Uncle Grandpa still treats him the same way he would treat a human kid.
    • Played straight in "Internet Troll" when Uncle Grandpa tries to kill the titular entity with his laser hammer for leaving a negative comment on his Youtube video. Mr. Gus tries to restrain him, but only because he doesn't realize that the Internet troll is also a literal troll.
    • Taken to disturbing levels in "The Lepre-Con". First Uncle Grandpa, Belly Bag, and Giant Realistic Flying Tiger beat up a leprechaun just for existing, then when Uncle Grandpa gets a wish from the Forest King he uses it to destroy the entire leprechaun species. This is despite the fact that the episode repeatedly tells us that Uncle Grandpa is pure of heart.
    • In "Uncle Caveman", Uncle Caveman doesn't see anything wrong with killing and eating Mr. Gus, who at this point is a sentient newborn dinosaur. He draws the line at killing Giant Realistic Flying Sabre-Toothed Tiger, though, since he doesn't eat his friends.
  • White Gloves: Uncle Grandpa wears these.
  • White Void Room: The segments between each episode take place in one.
  • You Must Be This Tall to Ride: Pizza Steve can't ride on a roller-coaster based on him because he's too short. He eventually sneaks in and finds out the hard way why he's not allowed, as the safety bars don't go far enough to protect him, and he is nearly flung out of the car. He ends up stretched out of shape and not wanting to ride again; ironically, he now is tall enough to ride, and is dragged kicking and screaming back in line.


Video Example(s):


The Two Steves

Steven Universe meets a talking pizza named Steve, who isn't happy that they both share the same name.

How well does it match the trope?

4.62 (13 votes)

Example of:

Main / OneSteveLimit

Media sources: