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The Insecticomics is a Transformers Fan Web Comic by Melissa DeHaan, also known as Wayward Martian. Originally, the comic was a series of amusing pictures of toys done for no real purpose, which explains the bad photography and writing. Eventually, the comics became more and more frequent and around episode 100, Wayward decided to make it a triweekly thing. The photography began to get better, the cast expanded and Wayward began using props and eventually whole sets, but the irreverent sense of humor remained.
The Insecticomics disclaimer reads as such:
In the context of the Insecticomics, the characters are not toys, but actual Transformers. Just really small and living in a human's apartment. Unless they're in the suburbs of Pollyhex. The fact that they're mass-produced and sold as toys by humans doesn't bother them, and toy stores are an accepted way to increase the size of one's army. They also never question why there's characters from pretty much every generation running around, or how, say, Waspinator and Thrust exist simultaneously. Or why Vector Prime can teleport but he carries a rubber sword.
Basically, the whole thing doesn't make much sense and "internal continuity" are words unknown. Welcome to the Insecticomics.
- Affably Evil - Arguably, many Decepticons (especially the Insecticons and Starscream's Brigade) have become this (Punch Clock Villain and Villain Decay also may apply). Kickback himself observes that their activities have become less a war between good and evil and more shenanigans for general amusement.
- All Humans Are Prudes - The given reason of why Transformers porn isn't shown.
- Aliens Steal Cattle - The most likely explanation for where the cattle that Bombshell and Shrapnel got for Kickback came from.
- Amazingly Embarrassing Parents - Hilariously inverted here with Stryka and Obsidian.
- Ambiguous Gender - All the Transformers.
- Animated Actors - The character from the 2007 Transformers movie are portrayed as actually being Vehicons hired to play those parts. (Strangely, movie Jazz, the only movieverse Autobot, seems to be accepted as normal Jazz.)
- Artifact of Doom - At one point, Override takes a knockoff of Megatron's fusion cannon out of the spare parts bin, and some of the other Autobots worry the knockoff might be this when she begins acting more aggressive than usual.
- Art Shift - When Grimlock tells the story of how he got his new body and mini-Dinobots, the comic shifts for several strips to actual art in crayon-drawing style. Arguably some of the most awesome strips in the archives.
- Back From the Dead - Starscream comes back as a ghost when his body is destroyed and hangs around pestering people until it's repaired. Conveniently, this meant he could also rescue Thrust from beyond the grave.
- Best Her to Bed Her - Grimlock seems to operate by this type of logic- Defeat someone, and they have to marry you. Considering this is Grimlock, his definition of "defeat" is odd.
- BFG - The Hydra Cannon a.k.a. Galvatron.
- Bifauxnen - Override, who is widely considered in the comic to be a very attractive female bot, but has a body type not terribly distinguishable from the males. During Lady Jaye's moral guardian antics, Override uses this to her advantage to mock and confuse the human into giving her only one censor bar.
- Big Eater - The Insecticons. But then it's kind of their original canon schtick.
- And Unicron. Well, duh. But also he's at least once depicted as speaking entirely in grunts and the word "Yum".
- Brick Joke - I Am Best Assemblydrone on Planet Basket!
- But for Me It Was Tuesday - This episode of Masterforce Theatre. Mostly as a way to poke fun at revenge seekers in this universe.
- Calvin Ball - Transformers playing chess drinking games can devolve into this.
- Catch Phrase - "Don't wanna. Can't make me."
- Casanova/The Vamp - Thrust, if you're a boat.
- Censor Box - Lady Jaye makes all the transformers wear one to "protect the children". To get around this, Bombshell transforms into weevil form... only to have Lady Jaye drop a huge censor bar on him.
Lady Jaye: Better safe than sorry.
- Cerebus Syndrome - Averted. There have been several longer and more serious story arcs recently compared to the comic's rather nonsensical origins, but they are usually balanced by jokes.
- Knight of Cerebus - The Fallen, at first.
- Chick Magnet - People with power are extremely attractive to those with aquatic alt-modes... regardless of gender. At one point, just to prove this to another 'bot, someone shouts "What's that? You've merged with the Underbase?" This prompts every single aquatic in the apartment to practically teleport there.
- It is because on Cybertron (or at least most incarnations), there are no oceans. Thus, that attraction is a survival program that comes with being a boat-bot, i.e. having a useless altmode in an eons-long war. Thunderblast can fly, making her a little more useful, but she is just power-hungry, preferring to manipulate someone else who is powerful (because she's less of a target that way). This info comes from "Ask Vector Prime A Question".
- Church of Happyology - The Unicronian Priest is turning his, Sideways's, and the Fallen's loyalty to Unicron into this, much to the latter's chagrin. There's also the "Church of Primus is a Bastard" From Ask Vector Prime a Question.
- Clothed Robots Are Funny
- Completely Missing the Point-Quite a few humans, Moral Guardian Lady Jaye included, keep forgetting that the Transformers are robots, have no real genders (it's all cosmetic), and can't have any sort of actual "interaction".
- The Coroner Doth Protest Too Much - Talking Geewunner smack in a bar full of mixed-series Decepticons is considered suicide.
- Crossover - Wayward is on good terms with Shin Goji of Twisted Kaiju Theater (another toy-based comic, this one Godzilla-themed), and they have had several crossovers. In one case, Shin Goji himself was mistakenly shipped to the Insecticomics household and found it very frustrating that his normal litany of cursing was bleeped out due to the Insecticomics being a slightly more family-friendly strip.
- Cuddle Bug: Blinky. Literally.
- Deader Than Dead - What happens when Armada doesn't like you.
- Death Is Cheap - But only for certain characters. According to a guardian of the Allspark, Starscream is getting to be as bad — or worse! — than Optimus Prime.
- Distressed Damsel - The Fallen and Sideways attempted (and failed badly) to hold Lazorbeak hostage.
"Insect! We have kidnapped your friend-with-benefits!"
"I'm a jet and you didn't put a lid on your maze, idiot."
- Eldritch Abomination - The bat-like Transformer that attacked Thrust in the afterlife. Supposedly, it's a Firstforged named Armada.
- Everyone Is Bi - This isn't completely true, but among the Insecticomics, Transformers' gender preference is regarded as akin to preference for a certain sort of vehicle mode or paint color. It helps that they're physically incapable of having sex, though they can apparently "make love".
- Fanfic - The entirety of the Insecticomics could theoretically be considered fanfiction. However, Dreadmoon himself is based on a character of same name from Wayward's Transformer fanfiction, which in some circles has become so popular that other people have also written Dreadmoon fanfiction that uses Wayward's works as its 'canon'.
- Five-Bad Band - Discussed.
- Flat Earth Atheist - Dreadmoon and Skyfire. Their leader is occasionally a ghost, they're in the same neighborhood as the powerful servants of a chaos god, they have been visited by said chaos god, they've encountered an artifact that brings life to inanimate mechanical objects, and their resident old guy is a time travelling agent of Primus. And still they mock Thrust for his tarot cards.
- Word of God: "Super-powerful and inexplicable entities exist in the Insecticomics. Skyfire and Dreadmoon acknowledge their existance while denying their divinity."
- Also, in the comic Dreadmoon was referred to as "the kind of atheist who would love to watch a god take a fall."
- Fourth Wall Mail Slot - The "Ask Vector Prime" series.
- Gender Bender - Lazorbeak was originally male, until the Insecticons decided to vote to change his gender in order to make the comic more equal opportunity. After initial concerns, she really got into it.
- Thrust declared himself female in an effort to thwart Moral Guardian Lady Jaye's protests, and then just stuck with it. It is not clear exactly how everyone can tell that she's changed genders, but they can.
Wayward: Thrust is remaining female until the prevailing attitude of, "Oh, it's just a silly little phase, she'll come to her senses someday," goes away. Which is to say, Thrust will be female forever.
- Genre Savvy - At least, fanfiction-trope savvy.
- Though as the comic goes on, many of the characters (especially Kickback) seem to be catching on to the comic's own Signature Style as well.
- Glowing Eyes of Doom - Glow effects are often added to the toy's "eyes" to demonstrate anger. This trope is taken to the extreme for the Fallen, who is actually on fire.
- Go-Karting with Bowser - what much of the Decepticon-Autobot interaction has become. Examples include Bombshell and Elita's on-off relationship, Prowl and Barricade getting energon-drunk together, and Starscream and Skyfire's ongoing romance.
- Her Codename Was Mary Sue - Shortround actually writes fanfiction portraying him as the ultimate warrior of the Decepticons (Cybertron canon has him very far removed from that) and finally getting Thunderblast. Bombshell and Kickback find themselves wondering who'll be the first to strike him down when and if the story gets out.
- Hilarity Ensues - The inevitable result of pretty much anything anyone does. Some characters, especially the Insecticons, deliberately aim for this.
- High Class Porn Star - Debacle, aka 'Debbie'. You know, the one who did Daebola?
- Improbable Weapon User - Animated Prowl shows that he can do this when Lazorbeak challenges him to use a six-foot party sub as a weapon. Poor Lazorbeak...
- Incendiary Exponent - The Fallen will occasionally burst into flame when he's upset or emotional.
- KindheartedBugLover - Liege Fabulo. Blackout is scorpion-specific.
- LOLScorpions - Blackout's Scorponoks tend to be these.
- Love Triangle - Dreadmoon is quite obviously in love with Starscream, who is quite firmly with Skyfire and doesn't seem to care what Dreadmoon thinks. (Well, he does care, he just classifies it as "useful".) Thrust, meanwhile, seems to like Dreadmoon but is content with hitting on him and taking him out on occasional dates (and is dating Flamewar on the side). There's also Shortround, who crushes on Thunderblast, who will only hook up with people more powerful than she is.
- Really, a large portion of the primary cast is/was/is off and on in relationships with other members of the cast. The only difference from the above relationships is that most of them just don't care who else their SO hooks up with.
- Mega Neko - Animkee, Wayward's cat.
- Mirror Universe - The latest story arc has Kickback get sent to a "Cracked Glass" universe due to a teleporter accident.
- Moral Guardian - Lady Jaye.
- Narrator - The narrator, nicknamed Gary, is actually a Vok and as such technically a character within the comic himself. So he's used pretty much every narrator trope at some point:
- Interactive Narrator - Taken about as far as it's possible to go, as Gary not only chats with the characters on occasion, but eventually takes on humanoid form to be at the big fight.
- Lemony Narrator - Arguing with Gary can earn you a Take That in the narration boxes.
- Unreliable Narrator - Of course, he rarely gets away with it without someone calling him on it, so he generally sticks to what's actually going on.
- Negative Continuity- Vector Prime hates this, since, being the guardian of the space-time continuum, he has to fix it. He especially hates G1's continuity problems, and at one point tries to kill Jetfire for all the problems his personal history has caused the old bot.
- Ninja Pirate Robot Zombie - A rather literal variety, as Lazorbeak takes ninja classes in an attempt to actually become three out of the four. (She winds up having her beak handed to her by Prowl wielding a six-foot party sub.)
- No Hugging, No Kissing - The annoying fanboy insists that Transformers must never, ever do "mushy stuff" of any kind.
- Noodle Implements - Transformers porn (that is, porn made by Transformers for Transformers, not porn made of Transformers by fans with strange fetishes). Even after watching it, Sassy Devine didn't understand it.
- Also the arc where Blackarachnia and Tarantulas broadcast Megatron and Dinobot II going at it. We never see what's going on but it involves kitchen implements somehow.
- Off-the-Shelf FX - The entire cast is made up of a truly impressive collection of action figures, some of which were made in small numbers and never released outside Japan, or were "first 100 to enter convention" sort of exclusives, etc.
- Oh Crap - As characters like Vector Prime and The Fallen are regulars or guests, happens whenever someone tries to beat them up, which naturally isn't often.
- Operation: Jealousy - Averted in the "Zany Scheme" arc, in which Thrust tries to convince Dreadmoon to date him in order to make Starscream jealous. Dreadmoon doesn't go for it, and winds up throwing Thrust across the room after Thrust tries to push through the plan anyway by kissing Dreadmoon in Starscream's presence.
- Overly Prepared Gag - Kickback set up one in this strip. Doubles as a Shout-Out to The Lord of the Rings.
- Painting the Fourth Wall - When there even is one.
- Photo Comic - Usually, although on a few occasions Wayward will draw the comic herself.
- Pizza Boy Special Delivery - Used during the Deviant Robot Sex! arc when Kickback bribes the pizza girl to pretend she is coming inside the house to have sex with them, in order to further convince a certain annoying fanboy that they are all having a gigantic orgy. In reality, they're simply having a party and aren't exactly sure how one would have sex in the first place without genitalia.
- Porn Stash - LOCUST PORN — view here (The comic in question, not the locust porn...)
- Practical Joke - Usually the Insecticons, who seem to view it as their calling in life.
- Purely Aesthetic Gender - All of the Transformers.
"Then me Grimlock must marry... the lottery!"
- Sailor Earth - Used for pretty much every character that is toy only, as the most characterization they get is a blurb on the back of their box. Dreadmoon is a special case, as the author actually 'made' him by repainting an Energon Dreadwing toy.
- When justifying Armada Skywarp's ability to create portals, Megatron notes that Skywarp "didn't have any stats, so I wrote him some".
- Screw Yourself - Sideways asks his upgraded female counterpart if it's weird if he makes out with her... about five seconds after they meet. During the Shipping arc, Starscream is shown to have hooked up with one of his former bodies.
- Shout-Out / Mythology Gag - Quite a few.
- Sniper, a hilarious send-up of Barricade's interrogation scene from the movie.
- Show Within a Show - The Chaos Priest's evangelical show and several others shown in one-panel gags.
- Single-Target Sexuality - Boats adore powerful people.
- Slash - Out the wazoo. Which, as it's pointed out, Transformers don't actually have.
- The Starscream - Natch.
- And without Starscream officially a member of the Decepticons anymore, Megatron is terribly bored, because his underlings are scared witless instead of trying to take power from him.
- Status Quo Is God - Averted, namely with changes in leadership and groups/subgroups. And Thrust's gender.
- Straw Fan - There's a fifty-fifty chance that any human character in the comic is one of these.
- And, strangely enough, at least a slight chance that even these characters will be treated with some dregs of respect. The recent Unicron arc actually seemed to indicate that Wayward at least sympathized with a Straw Fan Mary Sue's desire to be at the big fight and do all she could, even if that was effectively nothing.
- The Un-Reveal - Optimus Prime appears in shadow at the end of an early strip...only to be revealed as Pepsimus Prime, an actual Prime repaint that feature Pepsi colors and logo. He's characterized, naturally, as a tremendous corporate shill (as opposed to Optimus's more common personality) and becomes a Butt Monkey.
- Weaksauce Weakness - Said Pepsimus Prime reacts to Coke like it's a caustic acid. (Well, y'know, moreso than it actually is.)
- What Do You Mean It's Not Awesome? - Prowl wielding a six-foot-long party sub... and beating up Lazorbeak with it.
- Where Are They Now? Epilogue - Subverted as being yet another of White Chromia's fics.
- Wholesome Crossdresser - As much as the Insecticons can be called 'wholesome'.
- Why Don't You Just Shoot Him? - Discussed in Ask Vector Prime a Question: Vector Prime could destroy Megatron by teleporting him into a star or something, but Megs' fangirls would kill him.