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Pokey The Penguin is an absurdist Web Comic created by Steve Havelka (aka "The Authors"), crudely drawn using MS Paint (or something similar). Irregularly updated since 1998, it chronicles the (mis)adventures of a bunch of penguins living in the Arctic, along with other creatures that usually don't live there, either. Oh, and a very British snowman. Everybody speaks in ALL CAPS.
In the first strip, Pokey The Penguin is described as "AN EDUCATIONAL CHILDRENS CARTOON!" in which "POKEY AND HIS PALS HAVE FUN AND LEARNING ABOUT THE HAZARDS OF THE ARCTIC CIRCLE!".
The main recurring characters are Pokey (the titular penguin), "little girl" (Pokey's little sister), Mr. Nutty (the ever scheming British snowman), Headcheese (a french-canadian female penguin, sometimes Pokey's "girlfriend", sometimes a victim of his random acts of violence), Skeptopotamus (a skeptical hippopotamus that denies being one), Gustavo (a mexican potato with long, prehensile moustaches named "Democracy" and "Stalin"), and the Italians, which often come to the Arctic in their ships to steal the penguins' "Arctic Circle-Candy". There's also a boxing glove (apparently posessed by the devil) appearing at random to deliver a flying punch to someone.
Most of the secondary characters are penguins identical to Pokey. A bear is depicted as a brown penguin, a dinosaur as a green one, and the devil as a red one with horns. Even "little girl" and Headcheese are just smaller Pokeys with ribbons. While, for example, Stephen Hawking is depicted as a penguin wearing a wizard's hat, and Superman is another penguin with a blue cape, others, like Batman and "Bobdole" are completely indistinguishable from Pokey. There are also variations of other characters, like Old Man Nutty (Mr. Nutty's grandfather, a smaller, gray-outlined snowman) and Nostrapotamus (a Skeptopotamus with a wizard's hat).
Pokey the Penguin contains examples of the following:
- Abandoned Warehouse: Pokey visits one in San Quentin Holds the Key.
- All Just a Dream: Pokey and the Boxing Glove
- Amplifier Artifact: Pokey Finds an Artifact
- Are We There Yet?: Pokey in Ancient Scotland
- Beat Panel: Rare, but not unheard of.
- Bilingual Bonus: Pokey is Relaxing (Heirate Mich)
- Blessed Are the Cheesemakers:
Little Girl: "POKEY I HAVE FIRED UP THE TIME CANOE!!"
WHO TOLD YOU TO STOP WRITING YOUR RESEARCH PAPER???
- Brick Joke: Pokey and the Bricks OK, not really, but it involves a joke and bricks.
- Bullet Time: A true deconstruction in Slow Motion.
- Canada, Eh?: Headcheese
- Cereal-Induced Superpowers: "Clot-Busting Megapower" Pokey and the Breakfast Cereal
- Chained to a Railway: Pokey and the Train
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Little Girl in Pokey Is Camping
- Cut and Paste Comic: Sometimes you can see the outlines around pasted characters.
- Cyberspace: Pokey is "learning handshakes from around the world" through VR in Happy Birthday Pokey. Also, Pokey the Penguin in Cyberspace
- Dada Comics
- Deal with the Devil: The Devil
- Deliberately Monochrome: Pokey in Monochrome obv
- Dramatic Thunder The Big Storm
- Drowning My Sorrows: A Drink to Solve Problems
Little Girl: "POKEY IF YOU ARE SAD THEN YOU SHOULD HAVE A DRINK!!!!"
- Edutainment Show: Pokey the Penguin is an educational children's cartoon about the hazards of the Arctic Circle.
- Everything Is Even Worse With Sharks: Averted. They just fin the shark and eat the fin for "lunch" Pokey and the Shark
- Filler Strips: The comic features guest artists such as William Gibson in Pokey the Penguin in Cyberspace, the ghost of Claude Monet in The Waterfront on a Summer Day Mary Lou Retton in an eponymous strip and a propaganda strip from Laos: Our Glorious Leader.
- Gainax Ending: The last panel often has fuck all to do with the rest of the strip.
- Genie in a Bottle: Averted in Pokey and the Magic Lamp
- Global Warming:
- Halfway Plot Switch: Often. You're lucky if there's just one.
- Halloween Episode: Happy Halloween
- Hat Shop: Pokey wears a mortarboard on his graduation in Pokey the Penguin and Harvard.
- Honest John's Dealership: Mr Nutty in some of his incarnations. In others he is a criminal or a Mega Corp CEO.
- Human Cannonball: Pokey and the Cannon
- I Have Many Names: The Devil
- I'm a Humanitarian: Chicken Delicious Is a Bad Influence
- It's Probably Nothing: Pokey Is Camping Subverted in that there actually is no noise.
- Jet Pack: Headcheese and the New Haircut
- Long-Lost Relative: Pokey Has an Identical Twin! or Grampa Is Alive
- Mega Corp: Nutty Industries
- Mundane Afterlife: Subverted in Grampa Is Alive.
- Negative Space Wedgie: Pokey and the Anomaly
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: "Bobdole" in Pokey the Penguin Meets Bobdole and Pokey and Bobdole
- No Smoking: Let Us Meet Chicken Delicious
Chicken Delicious: "POKEY LET'S RELAX "
- Omnicidal Maniac: Pokeyzilla
- Or Was It a Dream?: Pokey and the Boxing Glove.
- Palette Swap: Yekop and Yttun in Pokey and Yekop.
- Pirate Booty: Pokey and the Buried Treasure
- Polar Bears and Penguins: Pokey lives with his family in the Arctic Circle.
- Prepare to Die: San Quentin Holds the Key
- Red Boxing Gloves: Pokey and the Boxing Glove
- Rip Van Winkle: Parodied in Rip Van Pokey
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Grampa Is Alive
- Snake Oil Salesman: Yttun, literally. Pokey and Yekop
- Stock British Phrases: Mr Nutty
- Stock Yuck: Pokey and the Broccoli
- Talk Like a Pirate: Pokey and the Buried Treasure
- Technicolor Science: Pokey's test-tubes in Pokey the Penguin and Harvard
- The Big Board: Pokey and the Situation
- Time Machine: The recurring "Time Canoe" that first appears in Pokey in Ancient Scotland.
Pokey: "WITH A FEW SMALL MODIFICATIONS, ANY CANOE CAN TRAVEL THROUGH TIME!!!"
- The Face of the Sun: Lo, spake Pokey, and thusly did come the bus
- The Great Flood: No ID Means No Whiskey
- The Infiltration: Pokey and the Situation
- The Talk: Averted in Pokey Has Unternet.
- Wackyland: Pokey visits one in King of the Podium.
- Wanted Poster: Mr Nutty and the New Money
- Weaksauce Weakness: The rain melts the witch in Pokey Was Correct
- What Do You Mean It Wasn't Made on Drugs?
- What Have I Become?: Inversion in Someone Has Stolen My Face
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?:
Little Girl: "DON'T WORRY POKEY!! SHE WAS JUST A ROBOT!"
Batman: "THIS CITY IS NO PLACE FOR LITTLE GIRLS!!"
- (struck out)
- (struck out)
- (struck out)