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YMMV / Polandball

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  • Acceptable Targets: Every country, really. Often by the people who come from the country that's being made fun of.
    • Poland is always portrayed as the Butt-Monkey of everything, and cannot into space.
    • Islam, or in Polanball lexicon, Kebab. Due to the faith's negative reputation caused by extremists, and further amplified by the Remove Kebab meme, and of Europe's (especially Serbia's) historical conflict with the religion up to this day (due to the immigration crisis), Islam gets the worst of the Polandball community's parodying. Whenever a Muslim country is featured there will inevitably be countryballs and commenters calling them Kebab and mocking them with all forms of stereotypes such as them as terrorist Jihadists (or wearing burkas if female)
      • Speaking of religion, the Vaticanball is portrayed consistently as a child molester and a closeted self hating gay that feeds Poland bad advice.
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    • Any portrayal of Japan will inevitably be followed by comments attacking Otaku.
    • Gypsies/Roma, to the point where r/polandball seriously considered banning gypsy comics.
    • Russia. You'll be hard pressed to find any comics where he isn't a violent sociopath... unless they are themselves made in Russia, of course.
    • Facebook banned the Polandball page numerous times for offensive content about Israel but only led to its portrayal as one of Poland's arch-enemies, Faceblock.
  • Awesome Ego: America sometimes, especially when he decides to "manifest my destiny".
    • France has his moments, such as in this gem.
    Europe is mine to redraw
    As there can be only one Emperor
    Under the sun of Austerlitz.
  • Broken Base: There are many disagreements within the fandom itself as to how to portray the countryballs, the biggest divide being the rift between Facebook and Reddit. The latter generally produces high-quality comics but has very strict rules and moderation, which many people feel infringes on the creative quality and freedom of the content creators. The former does not follow such rules and admins of respective countryball pages have their own guidelines for content, and therefore the quality of content may vary (except when Israel is involved). Facebook users generally see Reddit users as snobbish due to insisting on strict accordance to their rules outside of Reddit, and Reddit users generally look down on Facebook users for poor and non-humorous content.
    • There has been quite a few flame wars even within the Facebook community itself. There have been cases of people starting their own pages due to having vastly different views and opinions from the admins. There also have been cases of people using Polandball as a platform to air their political views, incidents where certain pages have been doxxed by ultra-nationalists, and frequent purges by the Facebook authorities themselves for any content that seemed slightly offensive, especially anti-Semitic (earning it the name "Faceblock")
      • The fact that admins of Facebook Polandball seems to be divided between National Communists and Traditionalists with the few moderates getting the brunt from both sides doesn't help tone down the flame wars either.
      • Clashing between countries that are real life enemies is pretty common on Facebook, to the point where their communities will mass report each other getting the pages taken down, or "Zucced" (slang term named for Mark Zuckerberg).
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    • A simple, surreal comic about Russia disguising himself as a pizza caused quite a split, with many fans loving it and drawing variations on the same theme, while others considered it utterly stupid and a Forced Meme.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: Some of the comics.
    • International Remove Kebab Contest is a good example. Serbia shows how to "remove kebab" (i.e. commit ethnic cleansing of Turkish Muslims), by... eviscerating a stuffed sack version of Bosnia with an accordion, then playing the accordion (still stuck through Bosnia) and singing an over-the-top racist creed of memetic status. In the words of NATO: "10/10, would bomb again."
  • Defictionalization: You can now make countryball plushies by using this tutorial.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • The Balkans get a considerable amount of spotlight for a region that's generally ignored by the rest of the world.
    • Ditto with Southeast Asian countries. Comics starring them are about as common as ones that star European countries.
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    • The Scandinavian countries are another area that is popular, along with central America.
    • The Jewish Autonomous Oblast is far more popular than most Russian regions, probably due to his eye-catching design: cubical (because Jewish) and with a rainbow flag that often leads to gay jokes.
    • Suriname. Mostly due to the Sheriff Suriname series.
    • Mauritania, mostly due to his nearly-memetic perpetual, jubilant smile. Like Suriname, he also gets his own comic series.
    • Palau due to how Kawaii it is often portrayed as.
  • Fandom Rivalry: With Hetalia: Axis Powers and Scandinavia and the World, both of which have a somewhat similar premise but are derided by many Polandball fans for sugarcoating the countries and certain aspects of history (and the less said of the two series' boatloads of Ho Yay, the better). Fans of APH and SatW in turn call Polandball fans unimaginative and accuse them of having unsavory politics.
  • Fan Nickname: Singapore is sometimes referred to as Tringapore.
    • Kazakhstan is occasionally referred to as Kazakhbrick.
    • Israel is sometimes referred to as Israelcube or more rarely, Zionbox.
    • Reichtangle is sometimes referred to as the Tangle.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple:
    • Finland and Estonia.
    • Poland and Lithuania to some extent.
  • Foe Yay: Between Britain and France due to their shared history.
  • Friendly Fandoms: There's a lot of overlap between Polandball fans and Paradox Interactive players. In fact, several Paradox After Action Reports have been done in Polandball format, and there's a healthy exchange of memes. This also extends to the more prominent mods of Paradox games, such as Kaiserreich: Legacy of the Weltkrieg and especially The New Order Last Days Of Europe.
  • Genius Bonus: If you suck at remembering flags you'll have trouble finding the comics funny. Consider then that many also include references to history, geography, politics, languages, dialects, slang, religions, movies, literature...
    • On Reddit, the creator of a comic will usually leave an explanation (always starting with "Context: ...") in the comments. You don't have to know about 13th-century battles or the relationship between Hungary and the Ukraine, but you'd best be willing to learn.
  • Ho Yay:
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • The phrase, usually representing national pride, "[Country X] STRONK!" and referring to Muslim and Middle Eastern countries as "kebabs" comes from some rather obscure Eastern European memes given international life by Polandball.
    • Polandball itself is a meme, coming from the successful 2009 campaign by Polish image board users to take over drawball.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Has its own page.
  • Poe's Law: Is very susceptible to this. The line between tongue-in-cheek parody, Cultural Posturing and flat-out racism is rather blurry.
    • Somewhat averted on Facebook pages where admins of pages will often be explicit about what they believe and like, so there's a good chance that the comics they post may be what they actually think if it's in line to their previous statements.
  • Self-Fanservice: Countryhumans, a branch of Polandball which gives the balls a human body and makes them more susceptible to fanservice thus.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Comics involving the Anglosphere and European countries tend to be more popular than those which feature African, Asian or South American countries.
  • Unconventional Learning Experience: Despite how silly some of the comics are, you can actually learn a bit about world history and politics from reading them.
    • The Polandball wiki has a much more streamlined (and more to the point) list of countries international relations than, say wikipedia.
  • Values Dissonance: The users and comics on Facebook Polandball are highly prone to unironic ultra nationalism, while Reddit Polandball users tend to mock and parody such tendencies. Poe's Law indeed.
  • The Wiki Rule: The Polandball Wiki is currently under construction.
  • The Woobie: Many nations have been this. It has its own page.

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