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YMMV / Cow and Chicken

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  • Awesome Music: The "Ugliest Weenie" song.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: This show had a number of them... hell, this series had entire episodes that fit into this category, such as:
    • "Journey to the Center of Cow": Cow accidentally swallows Chicken, who spends much of the episode paddling a river of acid inside Cow's four labyrinthian stomachs, encounter different enzymes of different intents, and in the end, not only does Red Guy (as a doctor) sacrifice his own life to save Chicken, he attends a disco rave with the enzymes. Wut?note 
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    • "Intelligent Life?": Cow somehow builds a milk-powered rocketship out of cardboard boxes and metal trashcans, lands on a planet composed entirely of mud, meets Red Guy who claims to be an alien, brings him home where he's treated like a god, then later becomes a jean model (oh, and he models jeans to the same disco music from the above-mentioned rave)... then Chicken turns off the TV and comments how stupid that show was.
    • Some of Flem and Earl's fake flashbacks and Imagine Spots from "Lost at Sea" are pretty... odd...
    • "Monster in the Closet": Cow befriends a monster hiding in her closet, who's invisible to everybody except her, though he's obviously not imaginary, because Mom and Dad eventually see him, and order Cow to banish him to the closet out of fear of him; in the end, Chicken finds him in another closet (even though he was invisible to Chicken as well) and they become pals after Cow finally dismisses him as a figment of her imagination.
  • Ear Worm: Momma had a chicken! Momma had a cow! Dad was proud! He didn't care how!
    • The short piece of music that plays at an episode's Title Card. It will still be in your head years after you've watched an episode.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse
    • The Red Guy. He even made it onto I Am Weasel because of his popularity.
    • The I Am Weasel shorts themselves were popular enough to be spun off into its own show.
  • Faux Symbolism: The red flag at the beginning of "Buffalo Gals" was a sign that the episode's content was going to go beyond the typical crap that strolls past the radar.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: This show is not the only one that has Charlie Adler voicing a red monster with mood swings (see Aahh, Real Monsters).
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  • Jerkass Woobie: Chachi the Chewing Gum Seal. He might have turned from The Eeyore into an Ungrateful Bastard but when he tries to apologize to Cow, he gets stuck under the table and has to hear Cow and Chicken trash talk him for a month.
  • Memetic Mutation: "Hellooooo, it's meeeeee!!"
    • "It says 'Eye Screem' on my truck, not 'Ice Cream'! Get it?"
    • "Dear Diary, you ain't never gonna believe what I am about to write down in yous."
    • "Oh, I'm sorry. I thought you was my Grandma."
    • "Now I can die happy!"
  • Moral Event Horizon: The Red Guy crosses this in the episode Part-Time Job when he tried to cook Chicken alive for his chicken-on-a stick restaurant. Of course, given that the Red Guy is supposed to be Satan, it's possible that he's crossed this at least once before offscreen.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Cow & Chicken's cameo in Ben 10: Omniverse.
  • Retroactive Recognition: Maxwell Atoms, creator of The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, got his start on this show as a prop designer, eventually working his way up to a regular writer and storyboard artist.
  • They Copied It, So It Sucks!: Was accused of doing this to The Ren & Stimpy Show, though, unlike most cartoons that tried to be as gross and shocking as Ren and Stimpy, this show actually had some former animators and storyboard artists who worked on Ren and Stimpy (the John K. episodes that weren't from Adult Party Cartoon), so it wasn't like the show hired a bunch of wannabes who had a passing knowledge of doing wacky, gross-out cartoons. They had people who knew from experience. John K. even called Cow and Chicken "the best drawn and animated cartoon of the 90s".
  • This Is Your Premise on Drugs: Inverted. This show could be seen as The Ren & Stimpy Show if it went to rehab and is in the process of recovering, but still has a long way to go before it can fully be clean (and traded its addiction to gross-out jokes for gender-bending jokes and sexual innuendo, similar to how most drug addicts turn to other addictions while trying to recover).
  • Ugly Cute: Cow. The show bends over backwards to make her seem vulgar and disgusting, but she's such a Cheerful Child that it's easy to find her more adorable than anything else.
  • Values Resonance: It might be a stretch to call this show "queer positive," as any and all gender-bending references (Pronoun Trouble, cross-dressing, gonky femmes - including women with five o'clock shadows - and inverted gender roles) are played for inherent absurdity. However, because most of these gags rely on Show, Don't Tell and Like Reality Unless Noted, rarely depicting any of them In-Universe as gross or abhorrent, they don't come off as negative so much as just normal, making it one of the few pre-2010s works which relies almost entirely on gay jokes while ultimately depicting LGBTQ+ traits in an unassuming light. It helps that both masculine and feminine stereotypes are equally played for comedy, regardless of which gender is displaying them.
    • One episode had a Imagine Spot with Cow marrying both Flem and Earl and spending the rest of her life happy with them. Despite being obviously played for laughs, it also was a rather positive portrayal of a polyamorous relationship, which was a bigger taboo back then that it is today.


Example of: