Misery loves company.
A gang of misfits whom no one likes and/or don't like themselves either get together or, more often, an elder, often a Zen Survivor, brings them together: he (or, more rarely, she) just hides it better. A set of True Companions forms out of everyone's lives sucking so much they ended up stuck with each other.
Very common in superhero teams who, while, fighting evil, tend not to have flashy headquarters or a get a lot public support or respect. Also could be used for villains, when they're not qualified to be a Quirky Miniboss Squad. Villain version usually led by a Nietzsche Wannabe.
Named after the classic teen film The Breakfast Club.
Compare Ragtag Bunch of Misfits.
- Villainous example: The Seven from Yu Yu Hakusho. I mean, they meet in a freaking cave. Plus, they're all pretty troubled people...
- The Sinners from Chrono Crusade. Disowned by their people, and dwindled down to frighteningly small numbers, this group of demons formed together around Aion to carry out his plans, while becoming an odd sort of family.
- The Kyoto Animation adaptation of Kanon, thanks to its refusal to just toss the haremettes after their story arcs were over, seems to have the harem grow into something like this in the end.
- Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai is a comical take on the trope, featuring seven friendless, attractive-looking teens with not-so-attractive quirks and personalities Lonely Together under the banner of the "Neighbors Club", whose ostensible goal is to help its members make friends: Kodaka—a boy who happens to be the sanest of the lot, whose solitude stems mostly from his intimidating appearance; Yozora—an abrasive loner with a hobby of talking to Imaginary Friends; Sena—the ridiculously hot daughter of their school's chairman with a snobby attitude; Yukimura—a highly-effeminate, gullible Wholesome Crossdresser; Rika—a Teen Genius with an incredibly dirty mind; Kobato—Kodaka's little sister under a constant self-delusion of being a vampire-loli; and Maria—a ten-year-old Hollywood Nun with severe reality-testing issues.
Comic Books[edit | hide]
- DC Comics' Doom Patrol and Metal Men.
- And the original Teen Titans
- Marvel Comics' The Defenders, especially the Steve Gerber era.
- The X-Men started out like this, but it's softened tremendously in recent years.
- Runaways, to the power of ten.
- Most of The Flash's Rogues Gallery have formed a tight little group (actually referred to as "the Rogues") and they come off as this.
- The Faculty is basically The Breakfast Club with parasitic aliens.
- The characters in The Boys in the Band are a Breakfast Club of dysfunctional gay men.
- Michael Mann's early action flick The Band of the Hand is about turning the Breakfast Club into a bunch of badasses.
- Don't you... forget about the Trope Namer.
- The characters in Unaccompanied Minors are young versions of this.
Literature[edit | hide]
- There have been a few books about a class of delinquents forced to sit together and share their problems; after some time, they end up 'bonding'.
- The Stationery Voyagers count, quite a bit. Pextel's a robot against his will, Rhodney is unhappy with daredevilism, Oceanoe got kicked out of the band, Marlack feels unworthy of the family ranch, Pinkella's family was murdered right in front of her, Viola grew up in poverty, etc. Their lives suck after they get together as well, as they are placed in more danger than diplomats should be allowed to be in; and their missions usually fail after ending in violence from opposing mobs.
- The Sun Also Rises is about a Breakfast Club of American expatriates living in France in The Roaring Twenties. The group consists of a World War I veteran (who is impotent due to an injury sustained during the war), a jaded Christmas Cake party girl, and a shy guy who just wants everyone to get along. Each dealing with their own problems and drama. The book is a deconstruction of the trope.
- The book Clean even lampshades this, with Chris saying, "We're kind of like a fucked-up version of that movie The Breakfast Club."
- Animorphs. The group is a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits that all met by chance by virtue of being friends of friends with everyone, who decide to take the wrong shortcut one night. Jake, their 'fearless leader', is probably the only actually normal one of the group, and his brother is trapped inside his own mind by a parasitic alien. Marco lives with a depressive single father who never got over his wife dying, although she's actually not dead and the real truth is far, far worse - she's the leader of the alien invasion. Rachel is a shopaholic who is also an Action Girl in disguise to the point where Marco calls her Xena on a regular basis (and can become quite Ax Crazy and sometimes, dangerously, dangerously sane if you threaten her friends...), while her best friend Cassie is a socially awkward African-American who is unpopular because she doesn't care anything for fashion and works as a vet assistant on her family farm (and her clothes show it). Tobias is the Woobie of the series, whose parents are dead (well, sort of... it's seriously complicated) and who suffers horrible treatment at the hands of his aunt and uncle. Did we mention that he's permanently trapped in the body of a hawk? Because being an animal was so much better than living at home that he didn't care if it happened? It most likely was deliberate. And his father's the alien that gave them the Imported Alien Phlebotinum Certainly fits the Dysfunction Junction element quite nicely. And their hideout, if it could be called one, is Cassie's barn. At least, until they tell everyone about the alien threat. And Ax, the alien, is the stereotypical "student living in his amazing brother's shadow" who (from what he missed in school) was a total slacker. And also Tobias' uncle on his father's side.
- The victors in The Hunger Games lean towards this. At least, the ones who aren't trying to kill each other. Katniss, Peeta, Finnick and sort of Johanna, for the most part, and also Wiress and Beetee at first and Annie later.
- Dead Like Me. The main cast regularly eat breakfast together at a Greasy Spoon, as well, making them a literal example of the trope name.
- Freaks and Geeks (separate groups)
- Most definitely the cast of Lexx, though the robot head guy would not qualify as The Woobie.
- The members of the 4077th M* A* S* H. It's not so much that no one liked them at home (except maybe for Frank Burns) and more like they all happen to be stuck in a war zone together (they hate it).
- Cheers . Even the theme song is about this.
- Misfits, oh so much. Five criminal teens find themselves united by social alienation, superpowers, and the accidental murder of their rampaging Ax Crazy zombie probation worker.
- Community. Lampshaded mercilessly in the pilot.
Web Comics[edit | hide]
Web Original[edit | hide]
- Team Kimba in the Whateley Universe. They get together because they are put together on their first day since they all have a secret that makes them outsiders. They are all transgendered, most of them against their will. Subversion: they rapidly become well-liked and considered heroic, after they happen to defeat a band of superpowered ninjas before the first day of school.