"EVERYTHING is funny. So long as you know it's a joke nothing is offensive. YOU try to protect people from wising up and getting beyond the idiotic shock and into a place where they can see how ridiculous things are. Do I think rape and abortion is funny? FUCK NO!! Jeezus! But Aborto and Rape-bo? HELL YES!"
—Jhonen Vasquez getting a bit preachy in Fillerbunny 3.
"Someone once said to me 'Jhonen, why do you make up so much shit on your Twitter?' and I just strangled the bastard with my tentacle arms."
Jhonen Vasquez is the creative force behind several comics, cartoons and other works, including Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, I Feel Sick, Squee, Fillerbunny, and others. He's widely known as the "Invader Zim Guy".
Vasquez' characters are disturbed people living in a Crapsack World. A wildly hilarious one. His main characters include a violently schizophrenic serial killer, an unstable megalomaniacal extraterrestrial, an abused and terminally terrified child, and a tortured and suicidal bunny rabbit. Just to name a few. His jokes mostly involve very stupid people getting horribly maimed, tortured, yelled at, mocked and patronized. He's also quite fond of Doomy Dooms of Doom.
Oh, and: One of Us.
Comics and cartoons include:
- Johnny the Homicidal Maniac
- I Feel Sick
- Invader Zim
- Everything Can Be Beaten
- The Bad Art Collection
- Stories for Strange Tales and the upcoming Beyond the Fringe comics
Tropes commonly associated with his works include:
- Attention Deficit Ooh Shiny: The comics often have gag panels completely unrelated to the ongoing story.
- Also, this trope is basically half of GIR's personality.
- Jhonen himself has frequently been described as a real life example of this.
- The introduction to the "Meanwhiles" section of the Squee collection states that the express purpose of said comics was to keep him from getting bored with the main characters and their world.
- Artist Disillusionment
- Author Avatar: Assumed by many of his fans about comic strip artist Johnny C., despite Jhonen's statements to the contrary. Parodied by his "autobiographical" comic where he goes on an unbelievable adventure that, in humorously underwhelming ways, parallels one of Johnny's stories.
- Axe Crazy
- Black and Gray Morality
- Black Comedy
- Black Comedy Rape:
- Notably: "I HAVE RATS IN MY ANUS". Nny's a bit of a hypocrite at times.
- In I Feel Sick, after Devi quits her jobs and walks out, Jhonen makes a small cameo only to told by Devi's ex-boss "I'm going to rape you up the butt and throw you out the window!" Cut to a scene of Devi exiting the building and a guy in the background falling out the window screaming "WHYYYYYY!?"
- Butt Monkey: Fillerbunny, not to mention every single one of Johnny's victims.
- Plus Dib, Squee, etc...
- The Cameo: Fillerbunny once showed up in Invader Zim, as did an alternate-dimension version of Nny and various writers for the show. However, years before, Rob Hummel-- Vasquez's main writing partner on the show-- is depicted as a slimy department-store employee who is forced by aliens to mate with a chicken in one of the JtHM "Meanwhile" segments. Happy Noodle Boy also has a tendency to show up where he doesn't belong.
- Not to mention said aliens become recurring characters of his. They show up several times in Squee & even have a major role in an episode of Zim (where they talk with inexplicable Liverpudlian accents).
- Character Filibuster: Several of Jhonen's characters go on frustrated rants in the face of the crazy-ass world they live in, though their indignation is usually undercut by their own insanity/absurdity. Johnny C. and Dib are main offenders.
- Chaotic Stupid: Nearly every secondary or minor character is this.
- Comedic Sociopathy
- Completely Missing the Point: The main source of Fan Dumb. One "Meanwhile" segment parodies this, overlapping with Springtime for Hitler.
- Contemplate Our Navels
- Crapsack World: Most settings, considered a distinctive personal style.
- Darker and Edgier
- Dark World
- Dead Baby Comedy
- Doomy Dooms of Doom: Oh yes. Invader Zim is the best example EVER of this trope.
- I'm gonna sing the doom song now! Doom doom doom doom doom doom doom doom DOOM! Doom doom doom...
- Everything's Better with Monkeys: References to monkeys keep popping up in his various works. He's said that he simply has a fascination with monkeys.
- Evil Versus Evil
- Executive Meddling: Has happened a few times in real life with Invader Zim. Also appears in a few of Vasquez's works, and is the main reason that Devi quits her job in I Feel Sick.
- Heroic Comedic Sociopath
- It Gets Worse
- Mad Artist: His characters Johnny and Devi? and possibly himself.
- Mad Eye: He's practically got this trademarked.
- Nietzsche Wannabe
- No Fourth Wall: Fillerbunny directly talks to the audience (usually begging them to put him out of his misery).
- Noodle People: A very prominent trait of his character designs (although his proportions become somewhat more sensible post-JTHM). Not to mention the man himself is a borderline Real Life example.
- Old Shame: His school-age Johnny stuff. That hasn't stopped him from publishing it in the back of the Director's Cut book.
- The Philosopher: Most of his main characters.
- Room Full of Crazy
- Rule of Funny
- Sadist Show
- Self-Deprecation: Quite frequently. Fillerbunny in particular is full of jabs aimed at himself.
- Serial Killer
- Sliding Scale of Cynicism Versus Idealism: Very, very far down the cynicism end of the spectrum. And possibly beyond.
- Straw Fan: A comic has him being stalked and attacked by five very persistent fans. They are actually pretty fitting personifications of his Fan Dumb.
- Straw Man Has a Point: Though one of the fans mentions how much The Bad Art Collection sucked, to which Jhonen consented.
- Sugar Apocalypse: Many of his works involve having adorable things suffer, which he has stated to enjoy writing.
- Surrounded by Idiots
- Take That: Basically anything currently trendy, especially the Goths that seem to idolize him.
- Also, guess what company the character "Nick" on Invader Zim was meant to parody. Go on, guess.
- Through the Eyes of Madness
- Transplant: Ms. Bitters appears in both Squee and Invader Zim. Since there's otherwise no indication one should consider the show a Crossover, she might otherwise be considered an extremely blatant Expy, or alternate dimension version of herself.
- There are a few minor appearances by other comic characters in the show though. Tenna appears in one episode clubbing with GIR, and a 'demon' version of Nny can be seen on the Halloween episode, though that still is shaky ground to say they're all in a shared universe.
- Villain Episode
- Villain Protagonist
- What Do You Mean It's Not Awesome?
- The Wonka
- World of Ham