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Western Animation / The Mask

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There's one last thing I gotta sing about
Open up wide and really shout
Ohhhhh, look out!
This is The Mask!

This Animated Adaptation of The Mask lasted for 55 episodes, from 1995 to 1997. It was definitely a product of the film rather than the comic book and took its cues from the Looney Tunes inspired antics of the Mask to make him a real (sort of) cartoon character. This actually allowed the "kids' show" to be in some ways more adult with more subversive antics.

The plot is simple: Stanley Ipkiss, a mild-mannered banker, struggles with the responsibilities of having a mask that transforms the wearer into a nigh-omnipotent trickster. He takes up the superhero thing, but his alter-ego, The Mask, is more interested in simply partying and having fun, which makes Stanley’s life significantly harder (especially his bank account). However, the Mask still manages to save the day from villains like the Mad Scientist Pretorius, the shadow-stealing fairy Skillit, a group of gangsters led by Lonnie the Shark, and many more, since Stanley’s good personality is able to steer him in the right direction.

Not to be confused with M.A.S.K..

This show provides examples of:

  • 10-Minute Retirement: Happens in the pilot episode. After the Mask causes Stanley nothing but trouble, he throws it in quick-drying cement, intending to get rid of it for good. But when Milo and Peggy are captured by Pretorius, he changes his mind and gets it back (after a scuffle with Walter) to save them.
  • AcCENT upon the Wrong SylLABle: Pretorius constantly pronounces Stanley's last name "IPP-kiss."
  • Action Bomb: Cookie BaBoom (the Mayor's exotic dancer ex-girlfriend) in "Flight as a Feather" invokes this trope, but ends up stripped of her suicide belts.
    • Kablamus, meanwhile, is your garden variety self-detonating man with various "flavors" of explosions.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: Zigzagged. Lt. Kellaway loses his grey hair, and is depicted as square-jawed and athletic. While he wasn't depicted this way in the movie (which the cartoon takes most of its cues from), this is more in line with his original comics iteration.
  • Adaptational Heroism:
    • As with the movie, the Mask allows Stanley Ipkiss to a superpowered prankster instead of a malevolent entity like in the comics. That said, it's alluded to that previous owners of the Mask were not so benevolent.
    • Peggy's still constantly trying to exploit the Mask to get a scoop, but she doesn't act antagonistic towards Stanley anymore.
  • Adaptational Jerkass: Charlie in the movie wasn't a Boy Scout, but he was still unarguably Stanley's friend. Charlie here is an unrepentant jerk who uses his promotion to bank manager to boss Stanley around and can't stand it when Stanley briefly becomes his superior.
  • Affectionate Parody: The Goofalotatots was an entire episode-long tribute to Animaniacs.
  • The Ahnold: The Mask himself on occasion, and one-time episode villain Sly Eastenegger.
  • The Alleged Car: Stanley still has "The Loaner" from the movie, and Kellaway and Doyle have a green car that always clatters and backfires when they drive it and was attacked by reanimated dinosaurs with an appetite for metal (as seen in "Jurassic Mask").
  • Almost Kiss: Happens between The Mask and Chronos in "What Goes Around Comes Around", and ends up squicking The Mask out so much that he has to literally get his head examined.
  • Alternate Continuity: It doesn't seem to follow the movie which had a definite ending. It seems more like the events of the movie just happened differently with Stanley hanging onto the mask, though a throwaway line from Charlie in "The Mask Is Always Greener On the Other Side" hints that the movie happened but that Stanley either found the Mask again or simply pretended to get rid of it. Also, Milo was seen swimming away with the mask at the end of the movie, which means maybe Stanley got it back that way and decided to keep it.
    • There was also another throwaway line from Peggy from that same episode that hints that the movie happened.
      "Okay, okay, so I sold you up the river to some mobsters ONCE! Can't we put that behind us?"
  • Ambiguously Human: Two examples:
    • Although he's a Cyborg, Dr. Pretorius, the Big Bad, may or may not be human, as he seems to survive long enough off his robot body and he's never seen eating or drinking; also, his eyes are red optic implants with no sclera or iris in them, and he speaks with a robotic tone.
    • Pretorius' goon, Walter, a former mobster is an The Juggernaut-type who does not speak very often (in this continuity, when he does, it's unintelligible) and he survives things that no human should. Plus he has very zombified-looking skin colors and walks like Frankenstein's Monster.
  • And This Is for...: In "Sister Mask", when Stanley manages to get the mind control device that Pretorius had been using to control The Mask onto him, and starts knocking him around the room like a pinball, we get this line:
    Stanley: This is for making me kick my dog. [...] And this... This is for dashing my hopes of actually being able to control The Mask someday!
  • Animation Bump: Thanks to having overseas animation studios such as Fil-Cartoons, Plus One Animation and Dai Won working on it, Season 3's animation is easily and consistently the most expressive and fluid in the entire series. While Wang Film Productions was also no slouch with the wackiness during Season 1, the execution was often inconsistant by comparison.
  • Anti-Hero: The Mask is Type II. He's lazy, a troll, and prefers to party and goof off, but he will still do the right thing in the end. Stanley on the other hand is rather weak and timid, so he falls into Type I.
  • Arm Cannon
  • Arch-Enemy: Good ol' Dr. Pretorius, whose motives vary by the episode, but usually fall under inhumane experiments For Science!!
    • The Mask is the archenemy of both Pretorius, who's an evil villain, and Lieutenant Kellaway, who's a police officer that the Mask loves to torment. It's not actually clear whether the Mask considers Kellaway an enemy of his, or if he just has fun screwing with him because he doesn't have much of a sense of humor.
  • Art-Style Dissonance: "The Aceman Cometh" combines the relatively realistic character designs of The Mask universe with the deformed, more cartoony look of the Ace Ventura cartoon, so whenever Stanley and Ace are on-screen together, their designs clash. This is exasperated by there being two credited studios (Fil-Cartoons and Cuckoo's Nest) for the episode.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Putty Thing, though His Size May Vary.
  • Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: The Mask and Milo's Mask form tends to suffer from this, often getting completely sidetracked from the bad guy until they barrel across The Mask's own shenanigans.
    • Eve also suffers from this as well, like when she’s trying to kiss Stanley as he’s trying to warn her that there’s a cage behind her, and only at the last second does she notice. Later on when Eve rescues Stanley from Pretorius, she tries to kiss him again while Pretorius’s body reaches for the button that will activate a machine that will bring a meteorite to Earth, and though she stops the body, she also fails to stop it from activating the machine.
  • Audience? What Audience?: On his first battle against The Mask, Kablamus ranted about children seeing them and Mask said he agreed. He then told the audience he knew about the children watching the cartoon but Kablamus was crazy. (He was right about Kablamus, mind you)
  • Back from the Dead: Subverted in "All Hallow’s Eve". While The Mask has technically never faced them before, Skillit reanimates three of the mask’s previous wearers; Billy the Kid, Atilla the Hun, and Nilrem, a medieval wizard who became a monster after an “accident” with a spell.
  • Bad Future: In "Comedy of Eras" and "Future Mask"
  • Balloon Belly: Happens to The Mask quite a few times in the series, due to how much of a Big Eater he is.
  • Banana Republic: Mentioned on "Counterfeit Mask" and "Mr. Mask Goes to Washington."
  • Batman Gambit: Stanley finds a special "Sister Mask" to be placed over the original one, which is said to give the wearer better control over his alter-ego. It turns out Dr. Pretorius created this Sister Mask and planted it in a museum; it's actually a body-control device.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: In "Bride of Pretorius", as his date with Evelyn is awkward, Stanley wonders if she likes him or not. Then she accidentally puts on the mask, and the artifact's "unleashing repressed feelings" nature makes it clear she does, in quite an unhinged way.
  • Bee Afraid: The Stinger in "To Bee or Not To Bee" and "Convention of Evil".
  • Bee-Bee Gun: The Stinger, who gains the ability to command a large swarm of intelligent monster bees after mutating into a giant bee monster.
  • Berserk Button: The Mask has three big ones: do NOT mess with his face, his clothes, or the Coco Bongo. Because if you do, he will then indulge in his (second) favorite pastime: REVENGE!
    • And there's also one that both Stanley and The Mask share: DO NOT. HURT. MILO. When it comes to that dog, he can be a bit of a Papa Wolf. Pretorius found that out the hard way.
    • In "Broadway Malady", once The Mask got word his favorite movie series, "Mad Monkey", was being made into a musical, he went berserk over it.
  • Beware My Stinger Tail: When cornered, The Stinger tends to use his large bee tail as a rather versatile weapon, either by knocking people over with it or using the stinger on the end.
  • Big Eater: In "To Bee or Not To Bee", a side-effect of The Stinger's Metamorphosis into a giant bee is now he needs an insane amount of honey to survive, which drives him to eat the contents of an entire Honey Chews factory in a single night and later enslave the entire city just so the inhabitants can manufacture more honey. Later, in "Convention of Evil", he has to have a pot of honey available at all times.
    • The Mask will eat enormous amounts of junk food during his nightly escapades, and often run up Stanley's credit card bills in the process. Whether or not this is due to him needing a lot of calories for his powers, or just because he loves food isn't established (though the latter belief seems more believable, as The Mask is supposed to be what Stanley always wants to be in life — wild, unpredictable, able to attract women and disrespect authority).
      • Just how big of an eater is he? He can eat twenty whole pizzas in one bite.
  • Body Horror:
    • Kablamus The Exploding Man.
    • To a lesser extent, The Stinger, whose bee mutation is more than a little unsettling.
    • The Mask transformations tend to be portrayed as painful and traumatic, since the wearers head is essentially changing form.
  • Boot Camp Episode: "The Green Marine"
  • Bottle Episode: The episode-long Clip Show episode "Convention of Evil" has most of the series' villains in one room and "The Green Marine," which took place inside the courtroom (and only departed from that place during flashback sequences).
  • Bragging Theme Tune: Both the CBS and syndicated versions.
    I gotcha with my winnin' smile
    I'm a livin' lesson in flair and style
    Ya just can't help but
    Stare at my savoir-faire.
    I'm nouveau
    Rococo, Baroco
    Bebop, uh, hip-hop
    Somebody stop me!
    Pretty viridian
    Faces like mine
    Don't come a dime a dozen
    I stand out in the crowd
    Babe, when they made me
    Yeah, they broke the mold
    Wholesome and kind
    And staid and refined
    Totally outta my mind!
    Arch-villains and ne'er-do-wells
    Had better learn to decorate prison cells
    Green goes with anything if they ask, see?
    Well, there's one last thing I gotta sing about
    Open up wide and really shout.
    Ooooohhh, look out!
    This is the Maaaaassssssk! Smokin'!
    I'm a lean, mean, green machine
    A maniac behind the ballyhoo
    Got a hyperactive mayhem gene
    And that's my gig, babe
    It's what I do.
    And I go spinnin' into town
    Got everyone seein' red.
    By the time I'm done
    They'll be seein' green instead!
    The city's actin' kinda edgy
    Trust me to make things right.
    Hear the news? Another drive-by wedgie.
    Freaky monsters lookin' for a fight.
    Time for a costume change
    Then take 'em for a spin
    4, 3, 2, 1, go!
    Let the games begin
    (scatting; spoken): Somebody stop me!
    I'm not any ordinary superhero.
    Spandex-wearin' zero.
    Did someone say, "It's party time!"
    Do you even have to ask?
    Ready or not
    Look out!
    I am the Mask!
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Happens quite a bit in this series.
    • In "Double Reverse", the Mask tells Kablamus to accept defeat, but the latter refuses, saying that the children wouldn't like it. The Mask looks around, not seeing a single child in sight, and humors him, before zooming towards the screen and acknowledging the viewers.
      The Mask: Well, I know you’re there, guys, but he's obviously got a problem, you know what I mean?
    • In "Split Personality", after the Mask gets himself and Stanley out of a trap designed to split them in half, Stanley asks why he didn't do that sooner. "Sense of jeopardy! Keeps them (points at the viewer) on the edge of their seats."
  • Butter Face: Whoever wears the mask retains their normal body (albeit with different clothes), but takes on a green face with little or no hair and a large smile.
  • Bungled Hypnotism: In the episode "Power of Suggestion," at the Fluff Ball, Stanley gets hypnotized to act like what he's told, but as the hypnotist is about to undo his trick, Kablamus interrupts, and Stanley and the Mask are subject to suggestion for most of the episode, with Kablamus taking advantage. The hypnotism wears off when the Mask tricks him into suggesting he forget what happened at the ball, which includes getting hypnotized.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Much to Stanley's disbelief (and the Mask's irritation), Ace Ventura pieces together all the pertinent details to Milo's disappearance and what Pretorius did. He also says he figured out that Stanley and the Mask are one in the same on the basis of Milo's clear devotion to his owner, but he also admits Spike provided photographic proof of Stanley putting on the mask, so that was technically cheating.
  • Butt-Monkey: Stanley Ipkiss (when he's not The Mask); when Stanley becomes The Mask, the usual butt monkeys are Mrs. Peenman (the grouchy landlady), Lieutenant Kellaway and his police partner, Doyle, Mayor Tilton, Eddie when he becomes Fish Guy, and any villain who gets in The Mask's way.
  • Canon Foreigner: Walter, The Juggernaut and main antagonist for The Mask in the comic books (there called as Big Head), comes back for the series as one of the Rogues Gallery, in a sort of PG version of the character, but maintaining most of his traits from the source.
  • Captain Ersatz: Quite often, usually ranging from lawyer-friendly cameos to shout-outs
    • Much of the main cast may also count, as happened with The Real Ghostbusters, none of them really look like the actors who played them, with only Charlie, Doyle and Peggy really getting anywhere close. This may have been to avoid paying for likeness rights. It's also possible that since the animated Ace Ventura (whose series ran in the timeslot following the Mask and even crossed over with it in an episode of each) actually was a clear caricature of Jim Carrey they wanted to make them distinct from each other.
      • Perhaps the funniest part of that is the fact Stanley looks quite a bit like Peter Venkman from The Real Ghostbusters.
    • Lonnie the Shark's biker gang may be an expy of the Dreadnoks from G.I. Joe. They even have Australian accents and one looks like a fat version of Torch.
      • Or rather, two of them do. Two members of the gang use the same character model. One is colored just like Torch's original toy, the other colored like Torch's animated appearance.
      • It's worth noting that this series was animated by Sunbow, the same company that created the G.I. Joe series that premiered in 1985.
      • The concept for Lonnie the Shark and his biker gang is inspired from Biker Mice from Mars; Lonnie's resemblance to BMFM's main antagonist Lawrence Limburger is a real giveaway.
    • Pretorius resembles Eugene Rapaz, a drug dealer from the original comics.
    • Walter may be this to the Walter from the comics. They look the same and both never speak, but cartoon Walter is indestructible whereas comic Walter can bleed when injured, and even likes to cut himself just to freak people out. He's also tough but not indestructible as Big Head was able to subdue him with electricity.
      • Comic Walter worked for Eugene Rapaz and cartoon Walter worked for Pretorius. See the entry above.
    • Putty Thing is a dumb teenager version of Clayface from Batman: The Animated Series.
    • Another that crosses the line between this and a mythology gag, while Lt. Kellaway doesn't even come close to resembling his film counterpart, he's practically a dead ringer for Kellaway from the comics.
  • Catchphrase: The Mask happened to have two memorable lines from the movie that gained this status. "Sssssmokin'!" and "Somebody stop me!" or a variation of the two managed to work their way into most of the episodes. Another from the movie (that was also in the comic), "But first...", also appears often, at times for the Mask to do some Skewed Priorities.
  • Casanova Wannabe: The Mask does not actually have a particularly great track record with women, despite the show he puts on. Stanley points this out in the episode "Split Personality".
    Stanley: You know, for all that "style" you claim to have, your track record with women is about as good as mine!
  • Chained Heat: In "The Terrible Twos," Kellaway handcuffs himself to Stanley so that way if Stanley turns into The Mask, he'll know about it and have Stanley arrested. Stanley manages to distract him time and again, and eventually is let go so that he can personally handle the villains.
  • Challenging the Bully: In the episode "Split Personality", a high school bully, Chet Bozzack, who tormented Stanley Ipkiss, to the point that he was expelled from the school, gets employed in the same bank where Stanley works. He initially seems to have mellowed out, with occasional moments of Jerkassery here and there. Then the mask gets split in half and then Chet finds one half and puts it on, releasing his repressed personality, which is a big bully. He ends up challenging Stanley (who still has the other half of the mask) for a fight in their old high school campus, as an act of revenge for getting him expelled. Unfortunately for Chet, while Stanley's normal self is still afraid of his former school bully, his repressed half (i.e The Mask) isn't and he is far more experienced with the powers of the mask. The resultant fight is almost one sided (though Chet does get his occassional moments), before things take a murderous turn and even Chet is horrified by his masked half's actions and manages to fight his inner demons, meanwhile, Stanley's masked half reveals he was only pretending to be helpless for fun. The episode ends with Chet realising he still needs help and deciding to start a new life in a new city.
  • Chaotic Neutral: The Mask itself is this, with any further alignment coming from the nature of its host. In the hands of someone nice like Stanley, it causes goofy chaos without actually hurting anyone, and will occasionally stop actual bad people. In the hands of someone evil like Blackbeard, it will straight-up murder people.
  • Chess with Death: The Mask has a dance-off with the Devil to get Stanley's soul back.
  • Christmas Episode: "Santa Mask"
  • Cloudcuckoolander:
    • Anyone who wears the Mask becomes this, especially Stanley and Eve due to their mutual love of cartoons (and having reality-warping only contributes to it).
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: A nerdy, white guy named Smedley appeared as the Mayor's assistant in the season two episodes "Going for the Green" and "Flight as a Feather." He hasn't been seen since then (though he may have quit or was fired following the Cookie BaBoom incident, since his final line to Mayor Tilton after Tilton ordered Smedley to disarm Cookie was, "On my salary? I don't even get overtime, ya cheapskate!").
  • Clip Show: Two of these — a partial one on "(The Angels Wanna Wear My) Green Mask" and an episode-long one on "Convention of Evil."
  • Comically Invincible Hero: The Mask will bounce back from anything you can come up with. He's even pretended to be killed just to piss off or scare villains.
  • The Comically Serious: When Dr. Neuman wears the mask in Shrink Rap, he retains his deadpan, professional demeanor (although he does also utilize the Mask’s cartoony powers as well, like putting Stanley in a shower to distract him).
  • Company Cross References: One episode featured spoofs of Animaniacs called The Goofalotatots. Wang Film Productions Co., Ltd animated both that show and The Mask.
  • Cool Car: The show often featured the Mask Mobile (which is the Mask applying his shapeshifting powers to the Loaner - once it even reversed as Stanley was forcibly unmasked while driving), which also had a prominent role in the Mask toyline.
  • Coolest Club Ever: The Coco Bongo. The biggest hotspot in Edge City, and possibly The Mask's favorite place in the whole world, to the point that he goes there almost every night. In one episode where he visits a post-apocalyptic future, seing the club in ruins leads to a Big "NO!" from him.
  • Crossover: A two-parter with Ace Ventura's cartoon, which aired on the same network. The first part is "The Aceman Cometh" on this show; Milo goes missing (really stolen by Pretorius) and Stanley hires Ace to find him. After various antics and Pretorius's defeat, Ace and Spike head home with the mask in their possession, setting up "Have Mask, Will Travel" on Ace's own show.
  • Darker and Edgier: Despite being a somewhat wacky show, there are two episodes that stand out:
  • Dartboard of Hate: Kellaway has one of these (with The Mask's picture as the dartboard) on the season two episode "Flight as a Feather"
  • Deal with the Devil: Played straight on the season two episode "Boogie With the Man."
  • Defeat by Modesty: The Mask defeats Cookie BaBoom in "Flight as a Feather" by yanking her suicide belt bikini off her body so he can make a cocktail out of it. Though considering Cookie is a strip... er "exotic dancer," the word "modesty" in the trope is used very loosely.
  • Depraved Kids' Show Host: Biker boss and criminal Lonnie the Shark is actually the actor who plays Barnaby the Dinosaur, as seen in "Baby's Wild Ride"
  • Distracted by the Sexy: "Flight as a Feather," when Kellaway and Doyle go to capture the Mask, the Mask takes Cookie BaBoom — who has been spinning around for at least two to three scenes — and stops her so her naked body faces Kellaway and Doyle. While the Mask gets away, these guys melt right in front of her.
    • The Mask often does this, particularly in "Love Potion No. 8 1/2" when he falls for the grouchy landlady Mrs. Peenman thanks to a carnival love potion sold to him by a gypsy.
  • Does Not Like Guns: Due to being nominally good, the Mask only uses guns with "flags with funny words on them". When Dr. Praetorius mind-controls him to use an actual machine gun, he tries to resist.
  • A Dog Named "Dog": Stanley’s neighbor’s infant son, Baby. No seriously, that’s his name.
  • Do Wrong, Right: During the episode where The Mask becomes the US President's personal assistant, he is caught on camera taking bribes from a sexy lobbyist, which the President is force to fire him. When The Mask protests since he thought it was ok for politicians to take bribes, the President points out it is but only in secret and never shown in public.
  • Drama-Preserving Handicap: Since The Mask is a Comically Invincible Hero Reality Warper that can do pretty much whatever he wants and thus any threat is over once he shows up, most every episode involves Stanley spending a good majority of the episode being unable to put on the mask or have it lose its powers for one reason or another and dodging threats trying to get it, as the only way to really threaten The Mask is to threaten Stanley.
  • The Dreaded: Downplayed with Walter. Most of the villains either start out as comedic or get that way, but Walter is consistently treated seriously (often to contrast the Mask's antics). Also, due to being Nigh-Invulnerable, he routinely prompts an Oh, Crap! from the Mask. While the Mask always comes out on top, it takes more effort to beat Walter than the other villains, and it's usually only by simply sending him away or trapping him somewhere.
  • Elemental Powers: Tempest in "Rain of Terror" and "Convention of Evil".
  • Embarrassing First Name: According to Cookie BaBoom on "Flight as a Feather," Mayor Tilton's real name is Mortimer (though that wasn't his real name in the movie adaptation).
  • Emerald Power: "Green goes with everything if I'm asked, see?"
  • Enfant Terrible: Even though he's over 4,000 years old, Skillit certainly qualifies. His idea of a "fun time" is either torture or a bloodthirsty rampage. Heck, The Mask even calls him this verbatim when they first meet!
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Stanley is just so harmless and pitiful in his pleading, that the frickin' Devil finds a loophole in his own contract to offer him a way out.
    • Masked Dr Neuman though insane and psychotic still has standards such as putting people in wedgie straitjackets instead of killing them and even with Stanley which he was very annoyed with, he decides to put him in a wedgie straitjacket and though the boy's mom keeps hitting him on the head he decides to put her in a cage instead of another wedgie straitjacket and he puts Charlie to Rorschach tests and even though he mentioned the mask he does not do anything to him until he mentions Stanley which makes him lose control and do lobotomy on him but after his appointment alarm went off he decides to not to do it and put him in a wedgie straitjacket instead and at the prison after Pretorius tells him about his plan to destroy Edge City to take a photo of aliens from outer planet, Masked Dr Neuman does agree with everyone that Pretorius is insane but decides to team up with him and help him do it anyway.
  • Everyone Has Standards: The Mask may be a Chaotic Good Anti-Hero who loves dishing out atomic wedgies, but he will not hurt anyone and even he was deeply disturbed by Skillit’s idea of “fun”, which shows just how different this version is from his comic book counterpart.
    The Mask: What kind of sicko do you think I am?
  • Evil Debt Collector: Parodied with Ace Ventura's commercial, as he implores someone to hire him before the guy angrily banging on his door breaks his kneecaps. As Ace says, TV advertisements aren't cheap.
  • Evil Has a Bad Sense of Humor: About half of the villains, including Pretorius and Walter, are overtly serious to contrast the Mask's goofiness.
  • Evil Lawyer Joke: When Dr. Pretorius was looking up the Criminal Network Database, among kidnappers and assassins were lawyers.
  • Expy:
  • Extreme Omnivore: The Masks main method of disposing of explosives. He has eaten, among other things, a nuclear missile and turned two suicide belts into a drink.
  • Eye Pop: A favorite trick of the Mask, who does it anytime he’s excited or scared.
  • "Fantastic Voyage" Plot: "Fantaschtick Voyage" has the Mask being shrunk and sent into Milo's body to seek a virus.
  • Fate Worse than Death: The Mask takes a temporarily mortal Skillit to school instead of jail at the end of "Shadow of a Skillit".
    • Pretorius forces The Mask to kiss Mrs Peenman in "Sister Mask" with the use of mind control. It almost kills both of them.
  • The Fair Folk: Skillit from "All Hallows Eve," "Shadow of a Skillit," and "Enquiring Masks Want to Know."
  • Feel No Pain: Walter. Nothing seems to phase him, not even having a piano dropped on his head.
  • Flanderization: The phrases "Smokin'" and "Somebody stop me" and The Mask giving his antagonist a wedgie were one-off gags in the movie. Here, the phrases are his catchphrases and the wedgie attack is a Running Gag.
  • Fingerprinting Air: Pretorius saw The Mask's hand print on the windshield of his van. He sprayed it with some mystery aerosol can and produced a solid 3D copy of his hand from it which was then used to plant evidence at a crime scene.
    • On this note, this same episode actually established that Stanley and The Mask have separate fingerprints as they did not register as Stanley's when the police database was searched. They DID, however, register as The Mask. Lt Kellaway had once managed to haul him in on a jaywalking charge and got his fingerprints on file. (this was not the case in the movie, as Kellaway got a warrant to arrest Stanley as his fingerprints matched the ones left by The Mask robbing the bank)
  • Fish People: Fish Guy. He can't swim worth a crap though.
    The Mask: Not only are you a lame mutant, you're a lame fish!
  • Fountain of Youth: This happens in the episode "Little Big Mask", where The Mask invents an anti-aging cream that winds up working a little too well, and causes him (and Stanley) to get younger by the minute. The rest of the episode focuses on him trying to create an antidote and Peggy trying to keep him focused. Of course, Hilarity Ensues.
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You: A hilarious inversion; The Mask tries to end an episode on a cliff-hanger note when he finds himself in a tight spot, complete with mock-narrator tone — too bad the villain gets wise just in time to stop the Iris Out.
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: "The Aceman Cometh" involves Pretorius developing a machine to acquire the brainwaves of Professor Quatermass in order to get past a facility's security system. He ambushes Quatermass at the park, but things go sideways when Milo accidentally gets hit with a beam, which leads to an unintended brain swap. During the climax, attempting to fix things causes the machine to go haywire and repeatedly swap the minds of the Mask, Quatermass, Pretorius, Ace Ventura, and a re-animated Martian with each other. In the end, everyone's back where they should be, except Pretorius and the Martian.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: In the pilot episode, Walter actually has a briefly visible look of terror when the bomb he's been handed is about to explode. It seems he may not have yet realized he was immune to explosives.
  • Friend to All Children: He's a mixture of The Gadfly or Troll depending on the situation but The Mask often has a soft spot for kids. When he's framed for robbing an orphanage, he actually wonders if he did do it by way of some kind of Split Personality and feels so guilty that he stays in prison.
  • Friendly Enemy: Doyle, Lt Kellaways partner, likes The Mask and usually takes his side when Kellaway thinks hes behind a crime.
  • Gargle Blaster:
    • On "Split Personality," The Mask/Stanley goes to a tough guy bar and orders a red-hot, battery acid piledriver with extra formaldehyde in a dirty glass with a black widow spider riding on the olive. They were out of olives.
    • On "Flight as a Feather," the Mask poses as a bartender who turns two megatons worth of dynamite into a drink called the Bikini Cocktail.
  • Giant Spider: Pretorius, when he gets the mask on.
  • Give Geeks a Chance: Vicky Pratt was the prettiest and most popular girl in high school who Stanley had a huge crush on, who admits to him years later that had a huge crush on him right back, and judging from the backstage pass she sent him and how she acts around him, hasn't stopped crushing on him.
  • Going for the Big Scoop: Peggy, often at the expense of her friendship with Stan.
  • Good Angel, Bad Angel: In the episode “Boogie With The Man”, Stanley gets this when he’s about to have Peggy sign a contract that will have her take his place after he makes a Deal with the Devil. And surprisingly, both the angel and devil are The Mask.
  • "Groundhog Day" Loop: Seen in "What Goes Around Comes Around".
  • Halloween Episode: "All Hallow's Eve".
  • Ham-to-Ham Combat: The Crossover with Ace Ventura is 30 minutes of two characters who were played by Jim Carrey trying to outdo each other in how over the top they can be.
  • Hated by All: In one episode The Mask is framed for robbing an orphanage and he quickly becomes the most despised person in town.
  • Heroic Willpower: When Stanley puts on the mask, he acts as crazy as ever, but still goes up against whatever villain is causing trouble in the episode. When most of the (non-villainous) characters puts it on, they just go completely bonkers with the exception of Evelyn who like Stanley still goes up against whatever villain is causing trouble. The implication is Stanley and Evelyn are the only ones who can muster enough willpower to control themselves and focus on saving the day. In "Shadow of a Skillet", it's revealed that another host who was able to do it was Abraham Lincoln of all people.
  • Hypno Fool: Stanley and The Mask on the season two episode "Power of Suggestion"
  • I Just Want to Be Special: Two comic obsessed teens (Dak and Eddie) decide to infect themselves with radiation hoping it would give them superpowers, but unfortunately they forgot to bring along an insect to bite them afterwards. Due to some events, they did mutate into inhuman creatures. Sadly, Eddie (the one with glasses) turned into a Fish Guy that's not even able to swim, while his buddy is a huge, Clayface-like goo monster. Whenever Fish Guy sees someone doing something extraordinary, he starts complaining about wanting to have superpowers too.
  • Immortal Immaturity: Skillit. He may be over 4,000 years old, but he acts like a Spoiled Brat.
  • Implacable Man: Walter, a silent, hulking thug. As in the comics, Walter is one of the only characters who can make The Mask feel pain.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: When you're the Mask, nearly everyone ends up this way. But special nod goes to Putty-Thing and Fish Guy, who are both ridiculously incompetent. Fish Guy doesn't even have powers; he's a fish that can't swim or breathe underwater.
  • Inevitable Waterfall: Happens to Stanley and Charlie while they're canoeing on a river in "Up The Creek".
  • Ink-Suit Actor: Pointed shark teeth aside, Lonnie the Shark looks like his voice actor Glenn Shadix
  • Inspector Javert: Kellaway, so very much - even more so than in the movie.
  • Interservice Rivalry: Kellaway and the Edge City Police Department vs. Agent X and the FBI in "Martian Mask". The FBI believes the Mask is an alien instead of a superhero or criminal.
  • It Came from the Fridge: The episode "Sealed Fate" has the head of the Putterware company developing a technique that turns leftovers into food monsters.
  • Jewish Mother: Lt. Kellaway's mother, most certainly, in "The Mother of All Hoods", which seems rather odd as Kellaway himself doesn't even seem to be Jewish. Of course, Lt. Kellaway's mother, from her brief appearances in the comics, was not this type. She was just a kindly old lady in glasses.
  • The Juggernaut: Walter, perhaps the only villain in the show to never undergo serious Villain Decay.
  • Jumping on a Grenade: In most cases, it would either be "sitting on it" or "eating it."
  • Just Friends: Stanley and Peggy hover between this and Vitriolic Best Buds throughout the series. Their relationship never even comes close to being romantic.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: The Mask is pretty much a hedonist, acting on every whim even if it means pissing off Stanley, the police, the mayor, etc. That said, he’s still a superhero who protects the city from actual threats due to Stanley’s positive influence.
  • Just Ignore It:
    • "Goin' For The Green": Colonel Klaxon's scheme involved exploiting this. He convinced the locals to just ignore the Mask's antics under the belief he'd eventually go away and stop bothering them. The Mask was quite frustrated by this turn of events.
    • "The Mother Of All Hoods": after a very humiliating encounter with the Mask, Kellaway tries this ahead of his newest case. The Mask still keeps popping up (either to bother him or warn him about something relevant to the case), and Kellaway gets increasingly twitchy with each encounter. He explodes by the end.
  • Kick the Dog: Literal example in "Sister Mask", when Pretorius had control of the Mask, and made the Mask kick Milo. Stanley wasn't happy about that, and when he got his revenge, he turned the Sister Mask on Pretorius, made him become a soccer ball and then made him kick around his robot body and his own henchmen. He even nearly calls out this trope word-for-word:
  • Lantern Jaw of Justice: Lt Kellaway has a downplayed version of this.
  • Large Ham: The Mask, especially in season three's "To Have and Have Snot." He gets called out on it by Pretorious, who's voiced by Tim Curry, ironically.
  • Latex Perfection: The Mask disguises himself as Dr. Neuman in "Convention of Evil", to the point of copying his voice, height, and mannerisms perfectly. The only way anyone could figure out his disguise is when the real one called Pretorius and told him he couldn't show up in time.
    • He also does this in "Little Big Mask", disguising himself as Stanley to trick Peggy.
    • This may also be another Mythology Gag, as one of Big Head's abilities in the comics was to wear incredibly realistic masks made of skin to literally resemble anyone he/she wanted to.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: After witnessing the various antics of another Jim Carrey character, Ace Ventura remarks the Mask reminds him of himself.
  • Leitmotif: Milo the dog had a little signature ditty when he appeared onscreen.
    • So do Mrs. Peenman, Kellaway, Doyle, and The Mask himself.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: Ace Ventura is hired to find a missing Milo and ends up suspecting the Mask of foul play. The two get into various shenanigans, including a limbo contest. After Pretorius is proven to be the culprit, the two team up to get back the dog and take him down.
  • Lighter and Softer: While it is already much more lighthearted when compared to the ultra violent comics, it is also lighter compared to The Movie, which was a PG-13 rated comedy film with plenty of adult jokes courtesy of Jim Carrey, a lot of violence including on screen deaths and some profanity. The Big Bad was a realistic mob boss and his ex henchman (Dorian Tyrell) who wanted to kill him and become The Don. Once Tyrell got his hands on the mask, he becomes a malevolent entity just like Big Head from the comics and his methods are extremely brutal. Compared to that, most (if not all) villains here are your standard run of the mill Saturday Morning Cartoon villains. Some are less wacky than the others (with Walter being the only one who has no wackiness associated with him).
  • Living Shadow: Skillit is an otherworldly prankster who uses his shadow to absorb others' shadows and steal their youth.
  • Losing Your Head: Dr. Pretorius
  • Loud of War: "Flight as a Feather" had a scene in which The Mask uses a large boombox and a cassette entitled "The Mask's Greatest Hits" as a form of torture on Mrs. Peenman - first out loud, then through headphones.
  • Love Potion: "Love Potion No. 8 ½" has one, that makes Milo a dog magnet, Stanley/The Mask and Kellaway fall for Mrs. Peenman, and ultimately the gypsy who sold them to be pursued by men.
  • Laughably Evil: Masked Dr Neuman is very funny like the Mask, but also much crueler. He puts anyone he sees into wedgie straightjackets, and after Praetorius won’t tell him about his plans, he tries actually injure him with a mallet and chainsaw among other things.
  • Meaningful Name: The real names of Kablamus, The Stinger, and The Tempest (see Steven Ulysses Perhero). Also, Cookie BaBoom, considering her method of suicide/homicide.
  • Medium Awareness: The Mask regularly acknowledges the audience. When Kablamus tries to do it as well, Mask dismisses him as nuts.
  • Master Actor: The Mask can disguise himself as anyone, and is usually only given away by his own Cloudcuckoolander behavior.
  • Mistaken for Transformed: "Little Big Mask" features Stanley Ipkiss testing an anti-aging cream on himself and suffering a downward spiral of regression as a result. After taking the now-infant Stanley to the hospital, Peggy wakes up to find that his enclosure is deserted except for empty baby clothes - leading her to tearfully assume that Stanley has regressed out of existence altogether and the clothes are all that's left of him. Fortunately, it turns out that one of the doctors just removed Stanley from the room for a quick check-up and he's exactly the same age he was the last time she saw him.
  • Monster Clown: It’s implied that the Mask was like this in the past, because it was attached to bad hosts (i.e. Genghis Khan and Blackbeard). Now that it has Stanley as a host, his innate goodness is able to temper it into a morally-ambiguous trickster who generally does the right thing. Indeed, whenever it’s accidentally gotten stuck to a villain, the true horror of the Mask’s powers begin to show.
  • Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: Dr. Pretorius, where his plans of mass destruction are usually in the name of science.
  • Most Writers Are Male: Subverted with "Flight as a Feather." Would you believe that, in spite of the appearance of (and subsequent Fanservice provided by) Cookie BaBoom (the Mayor's exotic dancer ex-girlfriend), that the episode was written by a woman? Yeah, there may have been some male writers pitching ideas — among other things, but an actual woman — named Julia Lewald — is credited for writing "Flight as a Feather".
  • Ms. Fanservice: Peggy is pretty much the main one in this series, but there are also a few one-shot characters that fit this trope as well: Evelyn/Eve from "Bride of Pretorius", Cookie BaBoom from "Flight as a Feather", and Davida Steelmine from "Magic".
  • Mythology Gag: In "Sister Mask", when Pretorius wears the mask, Peggy refers to him as "Big Head" - the name given to the mask wearer in the original Dark Horse comic series.
    • In "The Mask is Always Greener on the Other Side," the Mask once again produces a framed (and signed!) photograph of Kellway's wife.
    • In "Santa Mask," the Mask performs a mambo version of "Jingle Bells" in the Cuban Pete costume.
  • My Favorite Shirt: "Future Mask" — a robot from the future rips The Mask's favorite pants and the Mask chases through time to get him.
  • Naked People Are Funny: Cookie Ba Boom in Flight of a Feather.
  • Naked People Trapped Outside: Again, Cookie Ba Boom in Flight of a Feather.
  • Never Had Toys: In "Santa Mask", Kellaway tells Doyle he stopped believing in Santa Claus when he was five because he asked for a clockwork train called Captain Choo-choo and won a lousy shirt, instead. In the end of the episode, he finds a Captain Choo-choo behind his tote bag in the office and sheds a tear, although he still refuses to believe in Santa openly.
  • Nice Guy:
    • Stanley Ipkiss is shy, sweet, polite, and friendly, but is a push over and can be easily taken advantage of by others. The Mask is more of an Anti-Hero, but Stanley’s niceness keeps him on the side of good.
    • The same can be said of Evelyn, who is even more shy than Stanley, but still sweet.
  • Nightmare Face: Dr. Pretorius wearing the mask in "Sister Mask"; a bald green head, on spider-legs, half-organic, half-cyborg and with spiky teeth.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Skillit. His idea of fun includes boiling innocents in oil, flaying the skin off their bodies or splitting their spines.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Andrew Bedwetter from the episode "Broadway Malady" is an obvious parody of Andrew Lloyd Webber.
  • No Matter How Much I Beg: Done in multiple episodes, usually when Stanley instructs Milo to hide The Mask away where he'll never find it.
  • Not Me This Time: When Dr. Pretorius arrives on a Cruise Ship Stanlet and the other main characters are on he admits that while he does plan to blow up the ship as a test of his weapon, the fact that they are on the boat is just a coincidence and he didn't invite them.
  • Nuclear Mutant: Nuclear power (with a dash of Wrong Genre Savvy) is how Dak and Eddie became Putty Thing and Fish Guy respectively on the episode "The Terrible Twos."
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: There are a few instances when Doyle doesn't act like his normal, bumbling self, but almost acts like Lt. Kellaway. This is usually a sign that something bad is about to hit.
  • One-Book Author: Heidi Shannon, who voiced Peggy, doesn't seem to have any other credits besides this show, and very little is known about her, not even having a page on Wikipedia.
  • Papa Wolf: Stanley and The Mask love Milo deeply and won’t hesitate to go after anyone who tries to hurt him. Same with any kids that the Mask happens to notice are in trouble.
    • As shown in "Baby's Wild Ride" and "Mutiny of the Bounty Hunters", whenever Baby Forthwright is left in Stanley's care, you'd best believe that the Mask will stop at nothing to keep the little guy safe from harm.
      Lonnie the Shark: Who in blazes are you?
      Mask: The babysitter. And you don't ever wanna mess with the babysitter!
  • Pet Positive Identification: Zig-zagged in "The Aceman Cometh", where Ace Ventura is able to deduce that the Mask is Stanley Ipkiss due to Milo's fondness for him - and also because his pet monkey Spike took pictures of Stanley transforming.
  • Playing Sick: Pete the biker's M.O. of not doing work.
  • Police Are Useless: Kellaway and Doyle. Justified in that The Mask is simply too powerful for them to handle. Otherwise, Kellaway is a competent cop. Doyle is...not so much.
    • One episode most of the police force are busy looking for missing pastries instead of responding to a hostage situation involving Lonnie the shark, and only Kellaway and Doyle are respond to it.
  • Politicians Kiss Babies: Done in a cartoon. Of course, when the Mask himself ran for the mayor, he kissed babes instead.
  • Practically Joker: The Mask is a joke-based fighter who is also semi-insane, just like The Joker. However, Stanley is a good person and so the Mask is too, unlike previous hosts such as Attila the Hun and Blackbeard. Also, he has actual reality warping powers that Joker obviously doesn’t.
  • Pun-Based Title: If the episode title is not a Snowclone with Mask/Green ("Jurassic Mask", "Cool Hand Mask", "Mr. Mask Goes to Washington", "For All Mask-Kind"), it is one of those: "Rain of Terror", "Split Personality" (the mask is split in half), "Sealed Fate" (the seal in the case being of plastic containers), "To Bee or Not to Bee", "To Have and Have Snot"...
  • Pungeon Master: The Mask himself, as well as several of his adversaries.
  • Race Against the Clock: A few episodes have done this, two of the most notable ones being "Little Big Mask" and "To Have and Have Snot".
  • A Rare Sentence: As said by Ace Ventura: "Pretorius performed a brain switch... words I thought I'd never speak."
  • Reality Warper: The Masks main ability, though usually limited to himself and his immediate area.
  • Real After All: In "Santa Mask"
  • Really 700 Years Old: Skillit. He’s over 4,000 years old, but doesn’t look a day over twelve.
  • Rebus Bubble: In "Split Personality," when Stanley is thinking of what would happen if his old high school bully found and wore The Mask. He was mostly right. Luckily, the mask had been split in half at the time and Chet was only wearing it on one half of his body, allowing his normal self to stop his Mask persona when he went too far.
    • Also, in "Enquiring Masks Want to Know", the Mask has one after Peggy points out to him that the various cryptids (i.e. Sasquatch and the Loch Ness Monster among various other things) that have been suddenly appearing in Edge City as of late don’t have shadows, which makes him realize only one person could be behind this; Skillit.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Cookie BaBoom and Smedley, the Mayor's assistant were never shown prior to "Flight as a Feather," yet they've been established as being regular characters (despite that Cookie is a One-Episode Wonder and Smedley only appeared in two episodes: "Flight as a Feather" and the previous episode, "Going for the Green.")
  • Reveling in the New Form: In "Little Big Mask," Stanley Ipkiss creates an anti-aging formula and uses it on himself, only to find himself regressing uncontrollably into childhood. He's initially alarmed by the process, but once he starts wearing the Mask, he quickly adapts and starts having fun — no doubt aided by the fact that the Mask is a bit of a Manchild anyway; he even spends the day playing on the swings with an increasingly horrified Peggy. Indeed, Stanley is having so much fun that it's not until he regresses from toddler to baby that he finally understands that if he doesn't help Peggy find a cure, he'll regress out of existence.
  • Ridiculous Procrastinator: One of the Mask's Catchphrases is "But first...", meaning he's going to goof off before saving the city. This happens in nearly every episode.
    • Though there have been some occasional inversions of the gag where he expresses eagerness to do one of his usual pastimes and says "But first" before stopping to defeat the villains.
  • Riddle for the Ages: Just how did Walter end up inside the whale on "Flight as a Feather"?
  • Running Gag: The Mask wedgies his enemies and just about anyone who annoys him in some way, namely Kellaway, Doyle, Mayor Tilton, and Mrs. Peenman.
  • Saw a Woman in Half: Done to the title character on the season three premiere episode "Magic". Naturally, he hams it up and pretends he really got sawn in half to mess around with the pretty magician.
  • Say My Name: Kellaway would shout "DOYYYYLE" whenever Doyle did anything dopey (which was pretty often).
  • Secret-Keeper: Peggy is one of only three people who knows Stanley and The Mask are one and the same.
    Stanley: You're the only one who knows my secret. Well... You and Milo.
    • Pretorius and Walter are also aware- though Pretorius never tells any of the other villains for some reason and Walter can't talk.
    • Ace Ventura ends up learning the truth, but he keeps it a secret and gives Stanley the photos of the transformation.
  • Sequential Symptom Syndrome: In "To Have and Have Snot", the common cold turns out to be the only thing that can kill the Mask (because Stanley was sick in the first place). The symptoms are actually numbered from one to seven, and serve as a sort of countdown to doom.
  • Serious Business -
    • The founder of Putterware treats her company like a cult dedicated to the destruction of her former employers.
    • Every now and again, the Mask fights a supervillain due to some minor slight, such as when the Channel Surfer messed with the his shopping experience at an electronics store.
  • Sexy Coat Flashing: A warped variation done by Cookie BaBoom on "Flight as a Feather." After Smedley tries to stop Cookie from rushing the stage after Mayor Tilton, she supposedly flashes her naked body by opening her trenchcoat. Smedley lecherously growls, "Dy-no-mite!" As the trenchcoat hits the ground, the camera pans up, revealing the two megatons worth of dynamite strapped to Cookie's body - only to have the Mask give her a Shameful Strip.
  • Shameful Strip: The Mask does this to Cookie Ba Boom in Flight of a Feather to save the Mayor's life but more importantly to himself to get his feather back when he yanks her suicide bombs off her - and then uses her very public nudity to stun Kellaway and Doyle.
  • Shapeshifter Default Form: The Mask's standard appearance is with his trademark yellow zoot suit and feathered hat.
  • Shapeshifter Mode Lock: In "Love Potion No. 8/12", the Mask can't transform into different characters because of Madame Suspiria controlling her magic on The Mask.
  • Shapeshifting Trickster: The Mask's thrives on deflating his enemies' (or Lt. Kellaway's) egos.
  • Ship Tease: While Stanley and Peggy are portrayed as Just Friends and though he has not forgiven her at first for selling him out, it’s hinted that he may subconsciously have some feelings for her, considering that The Mask has acted a little flirty towards her a few times.
    Peggy: Mask! You’re alive! I could kiss you.
    Mask: (immediately zips over and holds her in a dip) Pleasure’s all mine, Sugar.
    • Though it could be that The Mask knows that Peggy wants to make up for selling Stanley out, and knowing Stanley may subconsciously have some feelings for her, decides to play Ship Tease for them.
  • Shoot the Television: Mrs. Peenman does so when Trapped in TV Land Mask enters a rerun of Gilligan's Island.
  • Shout-Out: Plenty. It would require an entire wiki to catalog everything. If the show can go 5 minutes without a reference, it's a miracle.
  • Showy Invincible Hero: The Mask is virtually undefeatable, with only a handful of villains being able to defeat him. A lot of episodes actually revolve around Stanley losing the mask and having to get it back, or having to get away from danger to go get it at home.
  • Skewed Priorities: Sometimes The Mask will acknowledge the villain to defeat, "but first..." he will do something completely irrelevant. For instance, in the first episode, he pursues the bank guard that was going to have a date with Stanley, leading the robbers to escape.
  • Something Else Also Rises: Kellaway and Doyle's reaction (of the melting variety, though there was that kinky twang noise prior to Doyle's and Kellaway's reaction) to the now-naked Cookie BaBoom on "Flight as a Feather."
    • The Mask's reaction to seeing Davida Steelmine perform magic tricks on the season three premiere "Magic."
  • Song Parody: In "Flight as a Feather," The Mask has a cassette of himself singing a parody of "O, Christmas Tree" which makes fun of Mrs. Peenman and makes her listen to the song on full blast.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Peggy was, in a deleted scene, killed by Dorian Tyrell in the original film. In the cartoon, she's his trusted confidant and Secret-Keeper, as well as the implied Love Interest.
  • The Speechless: Walter doesn't say a single word, which just adds to his scariness.
  • Status Quo Is God: No matter how often Edge City is destroyed or Pretorius's Evil Plan works, the city is always back to normal and Dr. Pretorius returns to being a Mad Scientist in the next episode.
  • Steven Ulysses Perhero and Punny Name:
    • Kablamus's real name is Joe Blow.
    • Tempest's real name is Fritz Drizzle
    • The Stinger's real name is Buzz Stingman.
    • Celia N. Airtight made a name for herself on the food sealing business.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Played for Laughs in several episodes.
    Tempest: They're always talking about how your parents screwed you up, how you have all this repressed hostility. Well I don't have any repressed hostility!
  • Superpowered Evil Side: Downplayed. The Mask is amoral, instead taking on the morality of whoever is wearing it. In the cases of Dr Pretorius, Dr Neuman, and Stanley's former high school bully Chet Bozak, they were always bad and the Mask just gave them powers to help carry out their plans.
  • Swiss-Army Appendage: The Mask as Toolverine.
  • The Symbiote: The Mask gives its hosts the power to do exactly what they've always dreamed, in exchange for being allowed to take over their body while they do it.
  • Take That!: The "Dan Quayle Center For Space Cases" mental hospital from For All Mask-Kind.
    • The Andrew Lloyd Webber Expy in "Broadway Malady" is named Andrew Bedwetter.
  • Theatre Phantom: "Broadway Malady" had The Mask as The Phantom of the Opera who tried to ruin the Mad Monkey Musical with a falling chandelier, but due to budget constraints, was reduced to using a small light fixture (the chandelier fall was seen at the end of the episode when the insane Broadway director creates a musical number with many Mask villains while in prison).
  • This Is Unforgivable! / Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: From "Baby's Wild Ride":
    Kidnapping and extortion are bad enough... But, for the crime of bringing Barnaby upon the children of this great land... YOU MUST PAY!
  • Those Two Guys: Lieutenant Kellaway and Doyle and the teenage slackers Dak and Eddie (who become Putty Thing and Fish Guy on the aptly titled episode "The Terrible Twos").
  • Threatening Sharks:
    • When Fish Guy puts on the mask and becomes Shark Dude in "The Good, The Bad, and the Fish Guy."
    • Lonnie the Shark (given his appearance) counts as well.
    • Milo wearing the Mask is prone to becoming a shark when in water.
  • Time Master: Thanks to her time warping gadgets, Dr. Chronos is one of the few villains on this show who poses a real threat to The Mask.
  • Time Stands Still: Done on the two episodes that have Chronos as the villain: "Comedy of Eras" and "What Goes Around Comes Around."
  • Title Montage: All three seasons featured an opening that was just clips from the series
  • Tranquil Fury: Having swiftly beaten the Mask then pulling out far more weaponry than needed to off Stanley, Pretorius was obviously not happy at having his visionary scheme foiled; but he announced his intentions with as much emotion as someone reporting the local weather.
  • Transformation Trauma: Stanley seems used to it by now, but a lot of first time wearers of the Mask react in pain and horror when the transformation occurs.
  • Trapped in TV Land: The season two episode "Channel Surfin'", complete with a visit to Gilligan's Island to tell the Skipper what everyone else has been complaining about for years:
  • Truth in Television: The Computer Virus' feeble disguise that manages to fool Milo's antibodies has some basis in how certain real-life (biological and technological) viruses camouflage themselves as they invade a system.
  • Unexplained Recovery: The Stinger's debut ended with him transformed back to normal and Gorganzola was a spirit that possessed Ms. Peenman's niece via an enchanted cheese amulet, with her eventually reverting back to normal; both show up in "Convention of Evil" with no explanation as to how.
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: Although The Mask's can be explained by his Reality Warper powers, Dr. Pretorius has an unusual take on this, in that he seems to have a large amount of bodies for his cyborg head to go onto - black-tie and tuxedo, ice-cream man, and his standard outfit of Badass Longcoat.
  • Unlucky Everydude: Stanley is an average guy who seldom catches a break.
  • Urine Trouble: Some episodes will have Stanley's dog Milo urinate on something as part of a gag. One example is "Mayor Mask", which shows him peeing on a campaign poster for Mayor Tilton.
  • The Vamp: Shy and demure Evelyn's mask persona is this to a tee, although it’s downplayed as she’s not actively villainous.
  • Villain Decay: Dr. Pretorius started off as a frightening Mad Scientist with a Herr Doktor accent in the first episode and even tried to get The Mask to murder soldiers in "Sister Mask", but by the end of the series, he's far less competent than usual and has his own inventions turn on him, with an And I Must Scream moment of him trapped in an alien's body due to a mind-control beam. and his head growling like an alien.
  • Villain Has a Point: Although Chronos (disguising herself as angels) was manipulating Kellaway into fighting the Mask, it doesn't change that everything that has been said is indeed true. Ipkiss is indeed a genuine good person who tries to steer The Mask to do the right thing and that Kellaway has done nothing but provoke the hero who retaliates in kind due to his unjust hatred towards him.
  • Villain Team-Up: The Framing Device for "Convention of Evil" is Pretorius trying to form a cartel made up of the city's major villains. None of them really want to go for it, due to all the grief they've suffered fighting the Mask, which is why Pretorius called in Dr. Neuman.
  • The Voiceless: Downplayed. Walter never talks except for grunts, which are unintelligible. In the original source material, he was The Speechless because his vocal cords were damaged due to a shooting.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: The Mask's main power is to transform into something appropriate for the situation. He has several favorite forms he reuses, such as Child Mask, Ancient Martial Arts Mask, Terminator Mask, Pirate Mask, Knight Mask and Swimsuit Mask, though he has several other forms he only uses once. He often likes to use the Einstein Mask form.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: Wearing The Mask while ill will screw up Stanley's powers and eventually kill him. So naturally, the city's attacked by a giant mucus monster while he's got a cold.
    • Pretorius, deadly, evil genius that he is, can easily be disabled by knocking his head off his cyborg body, he seems to have trouble securing it properly. His detached head isnt exactly defenceless, but its much smaller and weaker than his body. His cybernetic body is a rather competent fighter, even minus the head to direct it.
  • Wedgie: The Mask gives Kellaway one at least Once per Episode.
  • What the Hell Is That Accent?: Dr. Pretorius' accent is an unexplained European one; he's voiced by a British actor, Tim Curry, yet he doesn't speak with an Evil Brit accent, so it's hard to work out where he's from exactly, although it seems to be a Herr Doktor accent.
  • With Friends Like These...: Stanley's closest friend, Peggy Brandt, mostly uses him for tabloid material since she's the only person who knows that Stanley is The Mask. She even gets captured on purpose just to force him to use the Mask.
    • Charlie as well. Having apparently been promoted after the events of the movie, he becomes a severe Pointy-Haired Boss, foisting all of his work onto Stanley, forcing Stanley to run numerous non-work related errands for him on top of that, and invariably threatening to fire him if he refuses or fails any of this. In one episode, Stanley had decided to act like the Mask even when not wearing it, and ends up getting a promotion that Charlie had been vying for. This is the same Charlie who had done all of the aforementioned to Stanley, and he somehow actually has the unmitigated gall to actually try to make Stanley feel guilty about this.
  • Wild Take: The Mask pulls one of these at least Once per Episode.
  • Wingding Eyes: The Mask gets them quite often, mostly of the heart variety whenever he sees a pretty girl.
  • Wire Dilemma: This happens in the episode “Shrink Rap”. While attempting to disarm a nuclear missile Pretorius launched, The Mask tries cutting all the wires. When that doesn’t work, he goes for Plan B; eating it.
  • Wish Fulfillment Character: The Mask functions as this for anyone who wears it, giving them the power necessary to carry out their wildest dreams with no inhibitions. Whether this turns out good or bad for everyone involved depends on how much self-control the host has.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: The main characteristic of the Mask is not that it's good or bad, but that it's crazy. What makes it use its power for right or wrong is the morals of its host (Stanley is a good person, so The Mask becomes nominally heroic (same with Evelyn when she puts it on and becomes Eve). Previous hosts have been driven on murderous rampages if they themselves aren't very nice people, though there are some who can be Affably Evil such as Dr Neuman who wore it and became a polite Anti-Villain who still retains some morals).



Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): The Mask Animated Series


Little Big Mask

Having invented his own anti-aging cream and tested it on himself, the Mask finds himself regressing into a teenager, then a child, then as a toddler *and beyond* - shrinking out of his clothes and making life hell for Peggy the de facto babysitter.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (4 votes)

Example of:

Main / FountainOfYouth

Media sources: