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This is discussion archived from a time before the current discussion method was installed.

from YKTTW...

Dark Sasami: Is there a trope for episodes where the characters run around being silly and generally take a breather from the heavy, dramatic Story Arc they're in the middle of? Buffy and Angel did this all the time. Whenever one of these would come up, we would always quote Dot Warner from Animaniacs: "This is a zany episode."

Story Arc implies the existence of these, but I don't see anything talking about them specifically.

Gus: I have seen this referred to as a Breather Episode.

Idle Dandy: I like that. That needs to be an entry. There are some perfect examples late in Buffy season 2.

Gus: I kicked it off ... Breather Episode

Dark Sasami: Thanks! I've been feeling guilty but completely uninspired about that and the other ones sitting in YKTTW. This is great.

Fast Eddie: Took the spoiler font off the Xena: Warrior Princess bit. After being off the air for at least six years, we may assume all spoilers have escaped.
Adam850: removed: "Having seen season 6, this troper would have to disagree with that. Quite strongly." from the Buffy example. If it's wrong fix it, don't just point out that it is wrong. I would fix it, but I've never seen the show.
Maureen Mac Donald: From Boom Town:

Margaret Blaine: I spared her life!

The Doctor: You let one of them go but thatís nothing new. Every now and then, a little victimís spared. Because she smiled, because heís got freckles, because they begged. And thatís how you live with yourself. Thatís how you slaughter millions, because once in a while, on a whim, if the windís in the right direction, you happen to be kind.

Margaret Blaine: Only a killer would know that. Is that right? From what Iíve seen, your funny little happy-go-lucky life leaves devastation in its wake. Always moving on because you dare not look back. Playing with so many peopleís lives, you might as well be a god.

That's a breather episode?

Ununnilium: Sort of. It was a characterization-focused episode instead of a plot-focused one.
Arekuru: I just came here to add the "time wasting" quote from last night's Avatar episode only to find it already at the top of the page. Tropers never cease to amaze me.

Attilargh: Nyah nyah! :p

Bring The Noise: Does it count if they have the silliness BEFORE the tragedy, or is that a separate trope? E.g. Smile Time before ''A Hole In The World" from Angel season 5.


Fifthman: Would the Battlestar Galactica episodes "Unfinished Business" and "No Exit" count as breather episodes?