Aqua Teen Hunger Force

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Numbah 1 in da hood, G.

"Dancing is forbidden! It's mystery time!"
Master Shake

A weird original series from Williams Street Productions, Aqua Teen Hunger Force (2000-2015) covers the adventures (such as they are) of three amateur detectives/superheroes/bums living in New Jersey. The Aqua Teens first appeared as one-off characters in an (formerly) unaired episode of Space Ghost Coast to Coast (also a William Street production), but were eventually given their own show -- with changes to their appearances and personalities.

The eponymous "heroes" are Master Shake, a lazy, insulting, anthropomorphic milkshake who is the self-proclaimed leader of the Aqua Teen Hunger Force; Meatwad, a dim-but-lovable blob of raw meat who is frequently bamboozled, teased, and/or tortured by Master Shake; and Frylock, an intelligent box of french fries who is the extremely competent and halfway-morally-decent member of the force (except during his own moments of amoral behavior).

Their "adventures" are usually limited to making each other's lives hell or doing the same to their next-door neighbor (a fat, bald, slovenly Joe Average named Carl) by borrowing his stuff or swimming in his backyard pool without permission. The Aqua Teens occasionally have run-ins with bizarre monsters or aliens who turn out to be more obnoxious than they are evil. The best examples are two sets of recurring nuisances: The Mooninites (Ignignokt and Err) two aliens from the moon with an uncanny resemblance to sprites from an Atari 2600 game, an unshakable belief that they are superior to everyone else, and a predilection for tobacco, alcohol, petty larceny, and flipping people the bird; and the Plutonians (Emory and Oglethorpe), two spiny, cone-shaped aliens with designs on world domination and nowhere near enough competence or common sense to pull it off.

The show is notable for a heavy dose of Slapstick, surrealism, lots of Stuff Blowing Up, the Aqua Teens' television getting destroyed (at least) Once an Episode, and stream-of-silliness dialogue. ("Ever since my son was...never conceived because I never had consensual sex without money involved, I've looked at you as a... a thing I could live next door to, in accordance with state law. Now are we going to the Super Bowl or not?")

For the first two seasons, the show featured teasers starring Dr. Weird, a Mad Scientist living in an abandoned New Jersey insane asylum (along with his long-suffering assistant, Steve), who may or may not have had a hand in creating the Aqua Teens (fans have long speculated over the meaning of a picture, seen in Frylock's room on occasion, that shows Frylock with a much younger Dr. Weird). While the earliest episodes of the series showed Dr. Weird revealing his latest invention (only for it to escape and cause mayhem for the Aqua Teens), later teasers had nothing to do with the episode that followed. In the third season, the Dr. Weird clips were replaced with "Spacecataz", a failed pilot (split up into multiple parts) that followed the story of an escalating prank war between the Plutonians and the Mooninites. (The full, uncut pilot is an extra on one of the DVD sets for the show.) Episodes in the following seasons had no opening clips.

During the eighth season, the series changed its name to Aqua Unit Patrol Squad 1, and the producers said that the stated intention of the change was to reboot the series from the ground up and revisit the notion of the characters being detectives. As you might have expected, the show is virtually unchanged aside from the opening/closing sequence. The series was given another new title "Aqua Something You Know Whatever" in 2012, which has the group adopt a baby. The plan is to continue changing the name every year.

There is a golf game based on the series, in which you alternate between hitting the golf ball (or, occasionally, Meatwad) towards the hole, racing a golf cart against frat aliens, and killing a variety of frankly insane opponents (ranging from robotic turkeys to mummies) with everything from golf clubs to swords to chainsaws to an electric guitar.

Was almost Toonami's first original series. No, really.

Tropes used in Aqua Teen Hunger Force include:
  • Sixty-Five-Episode Cartoon: Parodied on their 100th episode, as it meant they would be make tons of money from syndication if they could avoid a monster that eats characters that hit this milestone. Since each episode is only twelve minutes, though, it takes two episodes to count as a single episode toward the syndication cutoff, meaning it would take at least another hundred episodes to reach the cutoff.
  • Aborted Arc: The "Spacecataz" shorts were intended to be the first of a three-part miniseries, but the plans for it were cut short before the other two could be made. The full-length short was cut up for use as the third season's cold openings, but the season ended before they could get to the ending (though it's available in full on the volume 4 DVD).
  • Actually Pretty Funny - in Total Re-Carl, Frylock ordered a crate of spare body parts to reconstruct Carl's body. Meatwad gets into the crate and comes out covered in eyes, claiming he's Sean Cassidy.

Shake: You don't even know what you're talking about!
Meatwad: Well, he was a Hardy Boy, and they were private eyes...and he had, like, ten eyes in his head...
Shake: ...alright, I'll give it to you.

  • Adaptation Distillation - The change in personalities from their initial Space Ghost Coast to Coast one shot, starting with Frylock being some sort of weird manboy that fit Meatwad better, and Meatwad being less idiotic (and a lot more depressed). Oh, and the voices. Can't forget the voices. (SG!Frylock had Err's voice, while SG!Shake had Ignignokt's voice and sounded very suave and sophisticated.)
  • Aliens and Monsters
  • American Accents:
    • Although the action takes place in New Jersey, Meatwad has a mangled Southern accent for some reason. Carl understandably has a Joisey-ish accent.
    • Also Frylock sounds black, as pointed out by Master Shake once. "Come on dawg, you're into this. You're black. You sound black. [pause] Where are you from?"
  • Amusing Injuries:
    • Shake attempts to get out of military recruitment by shooting himself. Not only does this not work, even though his entire head was blown away, in the next scene his mangled head is attached to his neck by band-aids.
    • Carl getting shredded by Frylock's eco-friendly toilet.
    • Let's just go ahead and say Carl has this happen to him a lot.
  • Anal Probing - Frylock indirectly offered an interesting theory as to why aliens may do this. When dealing with a Puppeteer Parasite alien that was controlling Shake, Frylock said it probably recycles its waste (it didn't). Therefore, one reason for anal probing may be that aliens lack anuses and are curious as to their purpose.
  • And I Must Scream - MANY instances, and usually involves Carl. Both disturbing and hilarious.
    • The Broodwich sends you to to a hellish dimension where a guy will attempt to chop you to pieces with a giant axe. Oh, and the guy trying to make you eat it is fucking irritating. Probably more so than the prospect of getting chopped to pieces.
  • Animate Inanimate Object: All three main characters -- and sometimes Dr. Weird's various body parts.
  • Anti-Hero - Meatwad is a Type I, Shake is a Type V, and Frylock can be anywhere on the scale depending on the episode in question.
  • Anti-Villain - Most of the "villains" are more obnoxious than evil (especially the Mooninites). Or just retarded. In some cases, want to go home... with some half-brained plan of getting there, like utilizing a giant spaceship made of dicks for some reason.
  • Anthropomorphic Food - The main cast.
  • Ascended Meme: Shake saying Boosh in "Rabbott Redux."
  • Art Shift
    • During "The Broodwich," to trippy, deranged, even more simpler animation.
    • Also during "Episode 100" when the show turns into a "Scooby Doo" parody. It's lampshaded and mocked to Hell and back.
    • As well as during The Movie's Opening credits and the fight between Dr Weird and Frylock.
  • Asshole Victim - Carl and Shake.
  • Awesome but Impractical - Mooninite attacks, which supposedly will disintegrate anyone and anything, move at a rate of a minute per inch. And can get swatted away.
  • Badass
  • Beleaguered Assistant - Steve. Poor, poor Steve..
  • Berserk Button
    • "Those are weapons! They are all laser-guided and I get CRAZY if you touch them!"
    • Boxy Brown being called... anything.
    • I just a WHAT, bitch?
  • Beware the Nice Ones
    • Meatwad is abused by Shake a great deal, but will occasionally rebel, usually with disturbing results.
    • Handbanana. He's loyal to the Aqua Teens, knows CPR, and can bake. Then he rapes you.

"Tonight. You!"

    • There's also a very polite monster living in the attic who comes down asking if he has mail. The Aqua Teens think they can get along pretty good until he tears Carl's limbs off and proceeds to drink his blood. At least he was thoughtful enough to say 'oh sorry guys, do you want some juice?' and offering up some of Carl's blood.
  • Big Damn Movie
  • Bigger Is Better in Bed:
    • Carl uses the shrinking/enlarging ray in "Unremarkable Voyage" on his... friend.

Carl: Hello, ladies. I'd like you to meet my little friend: Goliath. We had to order special elastic pants for him off the Internet.

    • Deconstructed - now he can't move and giant crab lice are leaping off his tree-sized dick.
    • Subverted in the case of Meatwad, who was stated to have a huge "dick." That is, Dick Nixon. Ol' Tricky Dick. Who looks just like Abraham Lincoln Wayne Gretzky.
  • Black Best Friend
    • Boxy Brown... sort of.
    • He just a WHAT, bitch?

Meatwad: Frylock, I'm friends with a toilet paper tube, an apple, and a box. I'm crazy in the head.
Boxy Brown: Well! You gonna diss me, boy, diss me to my face!
Meatwad: Boxy, please, don't take it like that--
Boxy Brown: Well how am I supposed to take it, then?

    • Frylock, maybe...

Shake: You're black, right? You sound black... where are you from?

    • Hilariously, Shake turns into one after an accident, and, as a consequence, turns far less assholish. Frylock changes him back because even he found it too weird.
  • Biting the Hand Humor: Against Boost Mobile. See Take That.
  • Black Comedy Rape: Carl's victimization by the titular character of "Handbanana."

Carl: See, you don't know what rape is like. For years, I thought it was funny. Oh, yeah, rape. It's so funny. Until you been raped.

    • "All I know is... 'ball', and 'good'... and RAPE."
    • "Tonight... you."
    • And again in the 100 episode with the Velma Expy.

Number 100: Well...can I at least take her into the woods, rape her, and behead her, possibly not even in that order?!

  • Bland-Name Product - In The Movie, one of the snack food musicians is a box of "Ice Caps" (the theatre candy Sno Caps)
  • Blatant Lies
    • Shake is very fond of telling these, even when it is of no profit for him to do so.
    • Meatwad has told his fair share in his occasional attempts at revenge on Shake.
    • A rare example of Frylock blatantly lying occurred in "Super Birthday Snake," when Frylock repeatedly denies killing Shake, Meatwad, and Carl, despite that they have come back as zombies and are "living" proof that he did kill them.
  • Body Horror
    • Too many instances to count.

Dr. Weird: I have genetically spliced the double helix of a fried pork chop with that of my roommate, Randall!
Steve: W-whoa!
Dr. Weird: Hell yes, "whoa"! Come here, Randall...(lifts up porkchop-Randall)AND PAY YOUR HALF OF THE UTILITIES!!!

Dr. Weird: My ass has finally decided to eat my hand! *crack* IT HUNGERS! For more...

    • Another episode:

Dr. Weird's arse: "GENTLEMEN, I AM DR. BUTTOCKS! Gentlemennnnn... WHERE ARE YOUUUUU..."

    • Yet another episode, Dr. Weird's giant floating cannibalistic head.
    • The entirety of "Total Re-Carl," the various new "bodies" Carl gets after getting annihilated via an experimental toilet.
    • The one with the Egyptian magical T-shirt where Meatwad brings Santa Claus over and he gets set on fire, resulting in all of his flesh being destroyed, and he uses elf-crafted soccer ball fabric for skin instead.
  • Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick
    • This:

This is your left, left, left
This is your left, that's your left!
This is your right, right, right
This is your right, you're gonna die!

    • How about this one from the 100th episode:

100 Kisses from the angels on my tummy
100 Kisses from my Mommy when I'm crummy
100 sins leave you dead within
100 nails that pierce your skin
100! 100!

Frylock: "I'm sure glad that was censored (turns to camera), or I would have been offended out of my MotherBLEEPing mind. (shit-eating grin. NOTE: this is a terrifying thing to see)
Shake: (while looking at the screen and Flipping the Bird) Yeah! Take That you MOTHERBLEEPINGING BLEEEEP SUCKS!
George Lowe voiceover: ACCEPTABLE.

  • Brick Joke: In one opening Steve impersonates Dr. Weird, shouting "Fill me with BBQ sauce because I'm dumb as hell!" A few episodes later show that Dr. Weird decides to do just this to himself.
  • Broken Aesop
    • Frylock invests in a new plasma TV.

Meatwad: "But I thought you said TV was bad!"
Frylock: "It is...but we fu(bleep)ing need it."

    • Pretty much every damn episode ever.
  • Bumbling Sidekick - Meatwad and Master Shake.
  • Bury Your Gays - Shake's short-lived roommate Dirtfoot. Literally.
  • The Cameo
  • Canada, Eh?: In the episode "The Marines", Frylock goes to Canada in lieu of joining the Marines with Master Shake and Meatwad, and ends up captive in a barn with "CANADA" painted on it, with, oddly enough, a Saw reference.
  • Captain Ersatz: The debt collector after Shake. He's pretty much a talking Predator.
  • Cargo Ship: Dr. Weird with a lawnmower.

Dr. Weird: Gentlemen...BEHOLD! I have made love to this machine! And now, upon retrospect, I ask, WHY?!

  • Catch Phrase
    • "Gentlemen... BEHOLD!"
    • "Jumping is useless!"
    • "X is forbidden" was originally supposed to be Shake's catchphrase, but it never really caught on.
    • "Dracula called and he's comin' tonight!!"
    • "I just a what, bitch?"
    • "Tonight!"
      • "You."
    • THOUSANDS of years ago in the future!
  • Christmas Episode: "Cybernetic Ghost of Christmas Past from the Future".
    • T-Shirt of the Living Dead could be called one as well, as it involves Santa Claus and the team helps Santa deliver presents ( after burning him alive). Though it should be noted that neither of these episodes took place around Christmas. The former being noted by Carl as February, and the latter being July.
  • Clone Degeneration - In "The Cloning", the television that Frylock clones turns evil. Later in the episode, the Aqua Teens end up making George Washington out of dollar bills. Who then gets shotgunned in the face.

Frylock: We should have cloned twenties. Jackson wouldn't have given a sh(bleep)t.

  • Cloudcuckoolander
    • Master Shake, Meatwad, and countless supporting characters.
    • Every character except for Frylock can count as this. But special mention goes to the Cybernetic Ghost.
  • The Chew Toy - Carl is either this or a Butt Monkey, depending on your point of view.

Carl: I don't know if I believe in God, but... I think he must hate me.

Meatwad: Whoa...boy I apologize. My hormones are going nuts! Now please.. if you would... Get the (elephant trumpeting) out of my way. I mean how many times do I have to gotta (fire alarm) write "ice cream" on this (rubber ducky squeak) list before someone gets his (horse neigh) in gear and brings home some (owl hoot) ice cream? Maybe I should get a STEAK KNIFE, and etch it in your mother(plunger thrust) forehead! HOW HARD CAN IT (squeaky toy) BE? ICE-MOTHER(drum hit)-CREAM! I guess that's the price I pay for living with two (dial tone) MORONS!
Shake: ...What happened to courtesy? Did it just... disappear?

    • In Cybernetic Ghost of Christmas Past from the Future:

Danzig: "Listen to me as hard as you f***ing can. The fucking robot came with the f***ing house and now he's fucking gone. If you see that mother--"
Shake: Yeah...uh, we'll tell him that.
Danzig: You f***ing better. If I find out he's over here I'm gonna be eating my cereal from the bottom of your f***ing skull. Verstandlich?

    • In a rare occurrence for him, Frylock dropped an almost disturbingly prolonged...everything-bomb when calling out the eponymous alien in Allen, Part 2.
  • Colon Cancer : Lampshaded. The Movie was called Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film For Theaters. The soundtrack added "...Colon The Soundtrack," and the video release added "...Colon For DVD" to that, in all cases spelling out the word "colon."
  • Companion Cube: Meatwad's "dolls," Vanessa, Dewey, and to a lesser extent, Boxy Brown. They all are actually sentient, much to Meatwad and the gang's surprise.
  • Completely Missing the Point: Dr. Weird finds an adhesive bandage in his banana pudding and asks for it to be removed, but when Steve says he can probably get it for free, Weird assumes he means the bandage, and not the pudding.
  • Contest Winner Cameo
    • Held a contest for the role of Carl in the live action episode.
    • Hell, one of the participants was female. Yes, a female Carl.
  • Continuity Cavalcade:
    • The Last Fucking One of 2003 has all of their previous Villains trying to kill them but instead arguing for the entire Episode. In the Scooby Doo parody in 100, Dr. Weird, Handbanana,, & Willie Nelson are briefly seen in the haunted house. The Movie features many of the the "villains" making returns, with several having roles as prominent as the Aqua Teens themselves.
    • And the season finale of season eight. Meatwad and Shake are spies named Ryan and Flint, Carl is a government agent named Lars, and Frylock is a double agent. Remarkably, this is one of the few episodes where Frylock is the least-competent character present.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • In "The Last Fucking One", the brownie monsters end up adopting a highway, and call the villain group "CLICK CLICK CLICK...." This results in a sign with "This highway adopted by CLICK CLICK CLICK..." This sign is later seen in the Boost Mobile parody episode.
      • A recent bump has shown that someone did this IRL.
    • The Power Puff Mall still has a Rabbot-shaped hole in its wall from the first episode.
    • When Carl is selling the Aqua Teens' house to a couple, he warns them about the attic.
    • The first episode of the show's rename, Allen, featured a small appearance by Randall. And he's still spliced with that pork chop.
    • The new name of the show, and location change to Seattle are nods to the episode "100".
  • Control Freak - Frylock, usually, and Shake, occasionally.
  • Cross-Dressing Voices:
    • One episode has Kids in The Hall alum Scott Thompson guest-voicing exotic dancer (and inept city employee) Dusty Gozongas. (Credited under the pseudonym of "Veronica Billingsley.")
    • Inept just really doesn't cut it, Dusty is almost to the point of Too Dumb to Live.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Too many instances to count, usually involving Carl or Master Shake, but subverted because of the Snap Back nature of the show. Not to mention its just hilarious.
  • Cyberspace - Involved an Internet "Wwwyzzerdd" (pronounced "w-w-w-w-izard-d") causing thousands of pop-up windows to materialize in the real world, filling the ATHF's house to the point where they couldn't even find each other.
  • Dead Baby Comedy - The various gruesome ways characters on the show have died.
  • Deadpan Snarker - Frylock. Meatwad in his more lucid moments, and even then, unintentionally.
  • Delicious Distraction: "The Broodwich" and "Lasagna".
  • Dick Nixon: Meatwad thinks he's Abraham Lincoln. Or, Wayne Gretzky.
  • Dogs Are Dumb
    • Handbanana acts like this, so everyone will think Carl's just being nuts when he starts accusing Handbanana of rape. Barring his pastry mastery and knowledge of CPR, which the Aqua Teens still pitch off, thanks to those traits being written into their dog-making software.
  • Don't Explain the Joke - Oglethrope prank calls the Mooninites in the "Spacecataz" shorts. In a rare instance of success, he pulls off the joke itself flawlessly and immediately botches the explanation while still talking to them.

Oglethrope: Hello, I'm looking for a Mr. Hunt, first name Mike. Get it? Michael Hunt!

  • Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: Steve mocks Dr. Weird in one opening, unaware that the Mexican janitor is trying to tell him that Dr. Weird's experiment actually succeeded for once. Dr. Weird's giant, disembodied head proceeds to bite off Steve's head.
  • Dude, Not Funny - In-Universe example: When Shake's VA, Dana Snyder, tries to pitch the 100 episode to the Williams Street animators, Nick Weidenfeld brings up the "Can I rape her and behead her? Possibly not in that order." joke (see Black Comedy Rape below) in a tone like a "No. Just... No" Reaction.
  • Dumbass Has a Point
    • See Oh Crap below.
    • Whenever Meatwad gets his head out of his ass. Usually.
  • The Eeyore - Happy Time Harry in "Dumber Dolls" takes this to absurdly dark extremes.

Happy Time Harry: You know, sometimes... I like to take this knife and just... cut my self.

  • Epic Rocking - Spirit Journey Formation Anniversary, an epic "happy birthday" song featuring guitar by Zakk Wylde and a Geddy Lee impersonator providing lead vocals.
  • Even Evil Has Standards Or more like Shake does. He and Meatwad are shocked that Frylock has taken a job that entails putting poison gas in children's birthday balloons. Frylock is quick to scoff at Shake's sudden possession of a moral compass.

Shake "See? it's unethical, it's immoral, I have standards"

  • Explosive Decompression: Most obvious in Spacecataz.
  • Eye Beams: Frylock.
  • Eye Scream:
    • The episode "Laser Lenses." Nuff said.
    • What everyone not Master Shake does to Master Shake's eyeball in Unremarkable Voyage.
    • Carl eventually has a whole body made of eyeballs. Moving or standing causes him considerable pain.
  • Face Full of Alien Wingwong:
    • Moth Monster Man may not be an alien, per se, but he laid all those eggs in Carl somehow.
    • In the first episode of Aqua Unit Patrol Squad 1 Shake is "effed in the face" by an alien bug in a freezer tube. For forty years. And the bug itself looks like a wing-wong...
  • Facing the Bullets One-Liner: Carl at the very end of "The Dressing" where he's confronted by a huge flock of Turkatrons aiming laser socks (yeah...) at him.
  • Fantastic Voyage: "Unremarkable Voyage", which gets sidetracked after Shake keeps hijacking the shrinking ray for his own purposes. Frylock, Meatwad, and Carl eventually get back by going into Shake's brain and forcing him to beat himself to death.
  • Faux Symbolism:

Meatwad: I'm gonna name you Jesus...Ezekiel...Jesus. And that's from the Bible.

    • And again when everyone sees Jesus Gee whiz on the gun shop billboard. But it turned out to just be Ted Nugent.
  • Feet of Clay - Most of the "villains" aren't as vicious as they seem though still disturbing. But the Plutonians... well, Frylock said it himself: "You guys couldn't take over a damn bowl of jello!"

Emory: What, is that like an important place or something?

  • Flipping the Bird
    • The Mooninites (most especially Ignignokt) love to do this, typically after Frylock sends them running back to the Moon. In their first appearance, they try to get the ever-gullible Meatwad to do it, despite him lacking opposable digits of any kind.
    • "I hope he can see this, Err, because I'm doing it as hard as I've ever done it before."
    • Master Shake in several of the later episodes.
    • Meatwad actually manages to do this in one episode, transforming into a giant fist and then raising and lowering the middle finger while near a busy highway.
  • Full House Music - Parodied from time to time.

Meatwad: Listen to me, Randy. It doesn't matter what you look like on the outside. Whether you're white, or black or sasquatch, even. As long as you follow your dream no matter how crazy or against the law it is. Except for sasquatch, if you're a sasquatch, the rules are different.

  • Gargle Blaster: Sort of. Frylock makes beverages made of mustard, vinegar, and oyster sauce for Meatwad, hoping he'd vomit up a microchip. The first one failing, Frylock makes another, adding his own urine. Unfortunately, Master Shake grabs it, chugs it, and promptly vomits.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    • I am Sofa King We Todd Ed
    • Literally, with the first appearance of the Plutonians. Oglethorpe refers to Emory as a "scheisse kopf(bad German for "shit head)." The Network noticed it, after it aired.
  • Gigantic Gulp: In the notorious "Dickesode" episode, Shake gets a soda from Wongburger that's literally the same size as him. He claims he needs that much soda on a daily basis.
  • Gilligan Cut: As Carl is mutating into a giant clown:

Frylock: "Stay calm, Carl, I know what I'm doing!"
Frylock [outside with Shake and Meatwad]: "I have no f*** ing idea what I'm doing."

Dr. Weird: (triumphant) "Yes! It worked! I am one can short of a six-pack!" or "Yeaaaahahahaha!! Take it to the BANK, DADDY!!"

Carl: "Heheheheheh...yeah, we're not doing that."

  • Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow: Averted with Carl. In a flashback to Christmas 1968, we see Carl as a young boy and his hair is already receding.
  • Helium Speech: Justified when both Frylock, Carl and Meatwad are shrunk down to a small portion of their size.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Everything Ol' Drippy did for Master Shake. (It wasn't appreciated, though).
  • Heroic Sociopath: The three may qualify, but the main culprit is Master Shake. Constantly abusing his roommate Meatwad, racing and destroying Carl's car, and generally committing all sorts of mayhem and remaining indifferent of his atrocities.
  • Hey, It's That Voice!:
  • High-Pressure Blood

Dr. Weird: Gentlemen, chop off my head with such velocity that my blood will rocket through my neck and propel my lifeless body all the way to Phoenix!
Steve: Wow. Aheh... Eh, what's in Phoenix?
Dr. Weird: Why it's your momma, Steve! Get the axe!

  • Humans Are Morons: The Mooninites believe that they are superior to Earth in every possible way; however, the logic and reasoning they use to enforce their position is very, VERY flawed. Truth be told, they're probably dumber than all life on Earth--human, food product, or otherwise.
  • Homage: The Broodwich dimension is a tribute to the cult short "Rejected".
  • Implausible Deniability - Master Shake lives and breathes this.
  • Incessant Music Madness: In the episode, "Multiple Meats", Shake splits Meatwad into several dozen pieces - each of which survives and becomes a mini-Meatwad. Frylock gets them to sing "Three Billion Bottles of Beer on the Wall" (and then leaves), driving Shake insane and causing him to cut his (non-existent) ears off and eventually commit suicide.
  • Informed Profession: In the beginning the trio were detectives. Lampshaded at least twice since then.
  • Insane Troll Logic - When wanting Frylock to grow Shake some "medicinal" marijuana, Frylock says no. Shake then responds with this little gem of logic: "I won't tell on you, we're roomies man! But if you don't grow it... I'm gonna tell on you!"
  • Instrument of Murder - Ignignokt and Err had the Foreigner Belt, a guitar-shaped belt that causes damage effects according to Foreigner lyrics.
  • It Came From the Fridge - "Ol' Drippy"
  • Joker Jury - Happens when Shake is called into Tree Court for dumping a huge vat of grease in the woods, then burning down a tree. Even his defense attorney is a shrub, who immediately squeals "GUILTY! MY CLIENT IS GUILTY!."
  • Karma Houdini: Frylock in "Total Re Carl". As a matter of fact, Master Shake is KILLED in that episode in spite of being completely innocent of the central conflict and doing nothing in particular to deserve it.
  • Kill'Em All: "She-Creature" is the first episode to feature all 4 main characters dying.
  • Kudzu Plot
    • Parodied in the movie. The plot is extremely complicated, involving the revelation of how the Aqua Teens came into being, the fate of Chicken Bittle, what the hell Dr. Weird's deal is, the secret conspiracy of the Insano-Flex, and whether Frylock is a lesbian in a man's body in the body of a box of fries, but by the end, no one cares because of the insanely complicated plot.
    • And by "no one" we mean the characters. A giant burrito claiming to be the Aqua Teens mom shows up for the first time ever out of nowhere at the very end of the movie and Meatwad is the only one even remotely excited about it.
  • Juggalo: In the episode "Juggalo". Features an appearance by Insane Clown Posse themselves.
  • Lampshade Hanging - "The Cloning," among many other episodes.
  • Large Ham
    • Dr. Weird. Aside from being plain loud, his intonation is all over the place.
    • The Cybernetic Ghost of Christmas Past from the Future: "Thousands of years ago..." His variations for other holidays, as well.
  • Laser-Guided Karma - The immoral actions Shake performs eventually come to bite him in the ass.
  • Leg Cling - Parodied in the poster for The Movie.
  • Literally Shattered Lives - Carl in "The Clowning."
  • Lottery Ticket
  • Long Bus Trip: On an Eyecatch that aired before the debut episode of "Aqua Unit Patrol Squad 1", the creators told Adult Swim that the episode would be the last time that Dr. Weird and Steve would ever appear on the show.
  • Luke, You Are My Father:
    • Ezekial shows up at Shake's doorstep claiming to be his son. It's revealed later in the episode that Ezekial isn't his son, and is actually much, much older than Shake.
    • "I'm four-thousand years old!"
  • Mad Scientist - Dr. Weird.
  • Made of Explodium
    • Pretty much anything, especially when Master Shake throws it to the ground.
    • Eventually justified when it's revealed that everything in the house has been destroyed and cloned so many times that the slightest contact destabilizes the molecular structure and causes it to explode.
  • Made of Iron - In the movie, Carl survives having nearly every muscle in his body removed with a large hunting knife. In the same movie, Dr. Weird survives shotgun-style blasts to the chest from Frylock and being literally cut in half a short time later. He seemed rather nonchalant about the whole affair.
  • Made of Plasticine - The Universal Remonster.

Oglethorpe: You could poke him with a pillow and kill him.

Carl: Truly they Aqua Teen Hunger Force.
Shake is driving a moving truck away from their old house...but he's not moving very far or very fast and there's a horrible grinding sound.)
Shake: Don't tell me how to drive, jackass!

  • Mondegreen
    • The sample of Shake's voice in the end credits ("Dancing is forbidden," spoken in the first episode) has been variously captioned and subtitled - even on the DVDs - as "dancing is forbidden," "dancing is stupid," "dance finger puppets," or "Danzig is morbidity."
    • That last one is Hilarious in Hindsight, as the real Glenn Danzig appears in one episode to buy Carl's haunted and elf blood-soaked house.
  • Mood Whiplash: Oddly enough, the episode where Frylock gets cancer. Even the whiplash parts are Played for Laughs themselves.
  • More Dakka: Carl pulls this on a pair of robots who have been testing him (in more ways than one) and who are about to kill him. He tells them that he has a test for them: Count the bullets.

15,943. Do more! MORE! They're like vitamins to us.

  • The Movie: Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film For Theaters.
  • Mundane Utility: The Plutonians using a Stargate Fargate to steal the Aqua Teens' cable.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Frylock in "Super Birthday Snake" after trying to free Shake & Meatwad after it ate them. He attempts to cut open the snake with his laser vision but ends up just blowing them all to gooey bits. One wonders why he didn't just use his fry-knife, which he uses later to dice up Carl, but maybe one shouldn't try to apply logic to this cartoon...
  • New Season, New Name: To Aqua Unit Patrol Squad 1, in a sort of parody of this.
  • Nice Guy: Frylock, though he has his moments.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: "Lasagna" features a parody of the Sham-Wow guy, including his pointed hairstyle and earpiece microphone. He works for the Scam-Wow company.
    • Averted with Boost Mobile. Tellingly, it's one giant Take That at the company.
  • No Ending - Episodes frequently end abruptly and with little or no closure.
  • No Indoor Voice - Dr. Weird.
  • "No Respect" Guy - Frylock.
  • Not So Above It All - Frylock, when given the chance can prove to be just as bad as his peers. He even got some pretty harsh stares from Shake and Meatwad after killing off MC Pee Pants. (He got better. Kind of.)

Frylock: Look, he was never gonna make it in the outside world. He was brutally insane. Besides, he was an eight-foot spider wearing a diaper!
Master Shake: Who am I talking to? Because I don't KNOW you.

  • Oh Crap - Shake's reaction after a replacement body for seriously-pissed-off Carl is a giant mecha suit bristling with advanced weaponry:

Frylock: I give you the ultimate in military hardware! Complete with laser cannon, indestructible titanium exoskeleton, and motion activated plasma pulse rifles.
Master Shake: And you're gonna plug him in?!
Frylock: (pause) You're right. Damn, what the hell was I thinking?

  • Only Sane Man
    • FRYLOCK. And even he has his occasional bouts of insanity.
    • Carl may fit a bit better, and he's still pretty eccentric.
  • Once an Episode - Explosions.
  • Our Dragons Are Different - Chess Dragon
  • Out of Order - For no reason
  • Overly Long Gag
    • "Super Birthday Snake": The zombies of Shake, Meatwad, and Carl saying Frylock killed them, and Frylock denying it. Repeat variations of this for about a minute.
    • Adult Swim's flash game, Aqua Teen Hunger Force's Worst Game Ever. A side-scroller with only one direction key and long stretches of nothing, interrupted by a harmless obstacle to jump over. The teleport key moves Shake all the way back to the beginning, and the Alt-F4 key...probably does your sanity a favor.
  • Overly Polite Pals: In the episode, "Multiple Meats", Shake splits Meatwad in half with a sword. The two Meatwad halves survive, and pull an Alphonse and Gaston Routine going into the front door of the house - that apparently lasts for several seasons (as we see sun, rain, leaves and snow fall while they continue "after you"-ing each other), driving both Shake and Frylock crazy.
  • The Pete Best - Chicken Bittle.
  • Power of Rock

Dr. Weird: Gentlemen, behold! Are you ready to rock?
Steve: I- I'm ready to rock.
Dr. Weird: Then I'm gonna blow your hair to the back of this auditorium! 1-2-3-4!

  • Product Placement - "Boost Mobile." Subverted because the entire episode mocks the company and their service. It probably still improved the company's sales.
  • Quarter Hour Short - Thank goodness, because as funny as it is, most people would agree 15 minutes is enough per episode.
  • Refuge in Audacity: So very much.
  • Refuge in Vulgarity: The show likes to make people retch.
  • Rogues Gallery: The Aqua Teens have quite a few mainstay "villains" including The Mooninites and the Plutonians.
  • Running Gag
    • Anything thrown will explode (usually if Master Shake does it), and no one says anything about it. A very subtle acknowledgment comes in the form of Meatwad backing away in shock from cloned money as it explodes after floating to the ground after being lightly tossed.
    • It was acknowledged again in "The Clowning" after Shake tried to throw a toilet brush on Carl's front yard but lands on their own yard. The Aqua Teen back away in shock when it exploded after a few seconds.
    • They somewhat try to address this by saying the use of the cloner causes the objects in their home to be so unstable. Lord knows why they even bothered.
    • It started happening after The Drizzle, where Shake rolls around in radioactive waste. Any variations where other characters throw things and they explode (if that even happens) are later in the series and a play on Master Shake's 'ability.'
    • At one point, Shake knocks over the reclining chair in the living room, which then explodes as it falls onto their game console, which then explodes aswell, taking the TV it was plugged into with it.
  • Rule of Three
    • Three roommates.
    • Also in The Movie opening credits (and by extension similar [[[Adult Swim]]] bumpers) are parodied as first a shot of the Williams Street logo appears with ominous sounding music, both fade out. A few seconds later the same music and background fade in with "Presents" written in the middle, and these fade out. A few seconds later the same thing happens with "This Movie" written on it, which gets yanked off after only five seconds.
  • Satan - Shown punishing MC Pee Pants' various incarnations for failing him.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here - Shake and Frylock have done this. Steve too, to Dr. Weird:

Steve: (after orders to behead Dr. Weird, reads) "Await further instructions from talking hole in neck." (looks at Weird's corpse, tosses paper away) Uhhh, Screw that.

Err: Is he alright?
Ignignokt: Cliff hasn't been "alright" since the Lunar War.

  • Shout-Out
    • The Powerpuff Mall that was featured in the first short, "Meat Fuzzy Lumpkins", shows up a few times. Craig McCracken returned the favor by putting ATHF on a TV screen in The Movie.
    • The Fargate from "Universal Remonster."

Emory: I think it's a Stargate?
Oglethorpe: It's the Fargate! "F"! It's different from that movie, which I have never seen, so how would I copy it?

  • Sitcom Arch Nemesis
    • Carl, who usually gets the short end of the stick.
    • He's less anyone's arch nemesis as it is that Shake is simply a colossal asshole to everyone all the time, and Carl simply is tired to terrible things happening to him whenever the Aqua Teens get involved.
  • Small Name, Big Ego - The Mooninites, especially Err.
  • Smoking Is Cool: As Err says, "We smoke as we shoot the bird!"
  • The Smurfette Principle - The show's cast is 99.9% male. None of the very few female characters are ever named, and the few that don't end up dead by the end of the episode typically kill the entire main cast themselves.
  • Snap Back
    • Many episodes end with Carl or one of the Aqua Teens (Especially Shake) being killed or mutilated.
    • Averted when the Aqua Teens are stolen by a giant spider in the Sahara. Carl tries to sell the house several times, to disastrous results, but played straight: the house's new inhabitants disappear by the next episode, for Carl to get harassed again.
  • Something Completely Different
  • Sound Effect Bleep: The actual [BLEEP] sound is rarely ever used. Most of the time, it's another sound effect, often theme related to the episode or randomized when used in succession during a long string of curses.
  • Space Whale Aesop:
    • "Global Grilling."
    • Pretty much all of the episodes. Don't clone money or you'll have to murder Clone Lincoln Washington.
  • El Spanish-O: Shake does it in "Remooned", when he thinks a convenience store clerk is Mexican. "Get back there-o and cash-o the check-o, amigo."
  • Spin-Off (Type 3): One episode featured the Bible Fruits, a trio of religious fruits who, despite their generally cheery disposition, are still battling a few "personal demons" of their own. Later, a series of shorts came out called Soul Quest Overdrive, which was basically the Bible Fruits morphed into sports equipment and with a Scottish soccer ball added for the hell of it.
  • Stealth Insult - In one episode, Shake claims that every woman who isn't interested in him is a lesbian. Meatwad replies, "So basically, every woman...?"
  • Story Arc - Uncharacteristically for the show, it actually did play around with having a brief Arc for a few episodes. It involved the Aqua Teens' previously unintroduced landlord Markula, a gas leak, military spiders, and the Mojave Desert.
  • Straight Man - Frylock. And he's not perfect either, even using his clone machine to duplicate money (To his defense, it was after Shake started doing it, and he would have used at lest some of the money to end world hunger... by starting a chain of family-style restaurants).
  • Strange Minds Think Alike - Both Shake and his failed replicant refer to ordinary pipes are "amazing spage-age tubes".
  • Stuff Blowing Up - As mentioned above.
  • Stupid Crooks
    • The Mooninites once stole their uncle's welfare check so they can cash it on Earth and go on a shopping spree... except the welfare check was actually a payment bill for home care and it emits radiation when it's overdue, which is two months overdue. Plus, they kept trying to cash it at a convenience store, even after the clerk clarified that such stores don't cash checks. And to truly show how stupid they were, on the way down to Earth, Err kept telling Ignignokt that the check was bill, but Err thought Ignignokt knew something about the bill he didn't know.

Ignignokt: Why are we trying to cash a bill, Err?!
Err: On the way down I kept saying that this is a bill. Just figured you knew something I didn't.
Ignignokt: I did know something I didn't. But it wasn't that.

    • That same episode begins with Igignokt spray-painting graffiti on a school, which Err quickly points out is just a rock.
    • Their first appearance saw them stealing whole assortments of electronics equipment. They also encouraged Meatwad to swallow an entire rack of DVDs, believing he could then walk out of the store with it; Meatwad couldn't do this and tried to carry it instead, which sees him immediately trip the store's alarms while the Mooninites take the opportunity to escape.
    • Emory and Oglethorpe attempt to defeat the Aqua Teens by replacing Shake with a replicate that fools no one, then videoconference with it while the others are in the room, watching.

Frylock: "He did notice that we're here, right?"
Major Shake: "Don't worry, they'll get it eventually."
Oglethorpe: "OH DAMN IT!"

  • Suck E. Cheese's
    • Pizza Potamus, in "MC Pee Pants" and "Spirit Journey Formation Anniversary".
    • Wong Burger's. One out of every three customers will get their dicks ripped out. It doesn't get much suckier than that.
  • Surrounded by Idiots - Frylock. See Straight Man.
  • Take That
    • Boost Mobile once had Master Shake dressed in ghetto bling for Adult Swim eyecatches on Comcast On-Demand... and then there was an episode dedicated to mocking Boost Mobile, killing some irritating sentient cellphones from said company, and Master Shake getting killed by the overdemanding cellphones.
    • "Where you at, dog?"
    • "Now we're too damn cheap to receive it. You want to watch Futurama, you go the hell over to Carl Central. He didn't even want it, until we started to watch it."
  • Take That Me: In "Jumpy George", a woman leaving her kids with Meatwad says "They're allowed to watch half an hour of television, and only cartoons. Which means no Cartoon Network."
  • Talking to Himself:
    • Creator Dave Willis voices both Meatwad and Carl, who interact very frequently. Also, any episode featuring the Mooninites will usually feature Ignignokt (also voiced by Willis) interacting with either or both of them.
    • Dr. Weird and Steve are both voiced by C Martin Croker.
  • Tastes Like Feet - The aforementioned Gargle Blaster in "Unremarkable Voyage." Shake's response after vomiting:

Master Shake: "My teeth feel gritty, and I'm gonna lie down."

  • The Tape Knew You Would Say That: Shake manages to create a tape of him rambling on randomly (including listing a soup recipe) that predicts to the second when Carl (who is listening to the room the tape player is in via microphone) starts suspecting something isn't right. What's even more impressive is that he somehow manages to do this days/weeks/months in advance, seeing how he is dead before the tape is even started. The tape even knew how he'd be killed, since the tape continues on perfectly from the shots that kill him.
  • The "The" Title: Most of the second half of season 2 (ie most of volume 3) has the episode titles start with "The", and one of the last is just "The".
  • The Something Force: Uh...
  • They Killed Kenny: Everyone, but especially Shake and especially Carl. In Aqua Unit Patrol Squad 1, Frylock dies more regularly.
  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch
    • Frylock: "You're liquefied, bitch!"
    • I just a WHAT, bitch?
  • Title Colon The Adaptation: Parodied with the movie.
  • Title Drop:
    • "Truly, they were... an Aqua Teen Hunger Force."
    • Made all the funnier by the fact that even at this late point in the series, the name still doesn't have any actual meaning... just like the show.
  • Token Human: Carl
  • Took a Level in Jerkass - Frylock, occasionally. Mostly justified - it's usually against Master Shake, who's taken a bigger level of Jerkass than could be matched by anyone else on the show. Yes, even the Mooninites aren't as big of assholes as he is.
  • Trailer Spoof: The trailer for The Movie went so far to identify itself as Spider-Man 2 in the text crawl while the narrator read the correct name.
  • Unrelated Effects: Anything thrown to the ground explodes. It's occasionally lampshaded, but usually ignored.
  • Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist - Master Shake, or Carl, depending on the episode.
  • Unwinnable Training Simulation - Parodied in "Super Birthday Snake," where the entire episode is revealed to be a simulation given to Meatwad by Frylock to see whether or not he's capable of raising a pet rabbit... and then that is revealed to be a simulation given to Frylock by Meatwad, after which Meatwad says Frylock needs to listen when Meatwad tells him what to do.

-Meatwad: Frylock, please. That was a computer simulation program, and it proved to me that you don't know what I like and what I like to do, and that is to tell you what to do, and you need to listen to what I say because I'm gonna eat your brains!

Adult Swim: "Um, guy? Duh? Who could be confused by this?"

  • Viral Marketing - What the Mooninite signs that were mistaken for bombs in Boston were supposed to be.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting
    • Meatwad. It's suggested that the only shapes Meatwad can take are the two he exhibits in the title sequence of every episode: a hotdog and an igloo. Although in the pilot episode, he was also able to take the form of a "meat bridge," and during his brief time as a circus attraction, he managed to take on the shape of a Samurai Lincoln (which he insisted was supposed to be Wayne Gretzky) after repeatedly shifting back and forth between the hotdog and igloo forms was starting to get old.
    • In the movie, he can also shift into a large building. He never changed into it before because no one asked.
  • Wasn't That Fun?: Quipped by Carl after returning from another dimension with gigantic hands.

Carl: Well, that was fun. I'm gonna take a nap now, and then I think I'm gonna call, uh, some hospitals.

  • Webisode: "Carl's Stone Cold Lock Of The Century Of The Week" during the NFL season.
  • Werewolf - Who wants to blow up the moon. Turns out to be a shaved wookiee who's also a werewolf... that apparently beams to a Star Trek ship.
  • Weirdness Magnet: The Aqua Teens' house attracts aliens, robots, vampires, a polite onion-spider who feeds on human blood, weirdos who had a mummy in the crawl space, giant humanoid roaches, sirens, grim reaper salesmen, homeless people, and the Aqua Teens.
  • Wham! Episode
    • Frylock dies in Allen. But of course, he's alive the next episode.
    • Last Dance for Napkin Lad, in which Shake and Frylock are killed by Meatwad. Also, all three of them plus Carl and the titular Napkin Lad are shown to be top-secret assassins working a complex double-cross on each other. It ends on the ominous note of Meatwad assuring that he WILL see Carl later.
  • What Could Have Been - The Mooninites being the ghosts of the Atari games buried underneath the house.
  • What Do You Mean It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: No mentally normal person would have been able to think up such absurdly weird monster concepts and character designs like what this series has.
  • When Trees Attack
  • Who Even Needs a Brain? - Jingle toy or not, Meatwad is not seriously affected without his.
  • Widget Series - IN AMERICA.
  • Witch Doctor:, hired by Frylock to resurrect Shake. He expresses problems doing anything bigger than a chicken, however. Or, for that matter, anything that isn't a chicken.
  • Word of God
    • Master Shake's insides are pistachio flavored.
    • In the Space Ghost episode, it's chocolate.
    • Dana Synder likes to think it's rotten vanilla.
  • Word Salad Title - Adult Swim actually lampshades this on their website:

"First of all, they're not teens. Secondly, there's no water involved. The whole Hunger Force thing? That's probably misleading too."

Meatwad: Why'd he do that?
Shake: Why wouldn't he?

    • Happens several times in "G-Wiz" due to shotgun blasts and Ted Nugent's arrow in Carl's shoulder. But because of Standards and Practices, they gush out pretty rainbows instead of blood.