History Main / InnocuouslyImportantEpisode

25th Dec '17 7:28:27 AM SpinAttaxx
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* ''Manga/DragonBall'':
** In the early portion of the Red Ribbon Army arc, Goku meets a robot/cyborg named Android 8, who briefly helps him out in Muscle Tower. Many years later, we would meet Android 8's creator, who sets into motion the entire Android/Cell arc and the major events that happen because of it.
** During the 23rd Tenkaichi Budokai arc, Piccolo and Kami speak to each other in a language nobody but they understand. In one of the few pieces of intentional foreshadowing, said language is written in a distinctly sci-fi alien font, hinting at the later revelation that they're Namekians.
18th Dec '17 4:57:54 PM ClintEastwood
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* The ''{{Series/Battlestar Galactica|2003}}'' first-season episode "Tigh Me Up, Tigh Me Down" was thought to be a comedy filler episode (the only intentionally comic episode in the entire show) revolving around a series of misunderstandings between Ellen Tigh (who unexpectedly reappears in the fleet) and Commander Adama (who believes Ellen is a Cylon sleeper agent). The whole episode climaxes in an amusing scene where everyone humorously works out their differences, and the matter is resolved. Three seasons later, in "Sometimes A Great Notion", it turns out this episode set up the eventual arc and reveal that [[spoiler:Ellen was the final Cylon]].

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* The ''{{Series/Battlestar Galactica|2003}}'' first-season episode "Tigh "[[{{Recap/BattlestarGalactica2003S01E09TighMeUpTighMeDown}} Tigh Me Up, Tigh Me Down" Down]]" was thought to be a comedy filler episode (the only intentionally comic episode in the entire show) revolving around a series of misunderstandings between Ellen Tigh (who unexpectedly reappears in the fleet) and Commander Adama (who believes Ellen is a Cylon sleeper agent). The whole episode climaxes in an amusing scene where everyone humorously works out their differences, and the matter is resolved. Three seasons later, in "Sometimes A Great Notion", it turns out this episode set up the eventual arc and reveal that [[spoiler:Ellen was the final Cylon]].



** "[[{{Recap/BuffyTheVampireSlayerS2E18KilledByDeath}} Killed By Death]]" (and earlier, "[[{{Recap/BuffyTheVampireSlayerS2E11Ted}} Ted]]") seemed a bit out of place at the time of airing (robots? really?) but set up the suspension of disbelief needed for the Buffybot to exist in that series, which allowed Dawn to stay in Sunnydale after the events of "The Gift". Also, this episode introduced Warren, who would become a major villain in the following season.

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** "[[{{Recap/BuffyTheVampireSlayerS2E18KilledByDeath}} Killed By Death]]" (and earlier, "[[{{Recap/BuffyTheVampireSlayerS2E11Ted}} Ted]]") seemed a bit out of place at the time of airing (robots? really?) but set up the suspension of disbelief needed for the Buffybot to exist in that series, which allowed Dawn to stay in Sunnydale after the events of "The Gift"."[[{{Recap/BuffyTheVampireSlayerS5E22TheGift}} The Gift]]". Also, this episode introduced Warren, who would become a major villain in the following season.
18th Dec '17 4:50:29 PM ClintEastwood
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** The thirteenth episode "Signs and Portents". The episode's "A" plot is some fairly standard and unimportant thing involving Raiders [space pirates] and a Centauri artifact called The Eye. The "B" plot, involving the first appearance of the enigmatic Mr Morden and the question "What do you want?", turns out to be ''incredibly'' important and crucial to the rest of the series -- but the episode's retrospective importance only kicks in at the first season finale.\\

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** The thirteenth episode "Signs "[[{{Recap/BabylonFiveS01E13SignsAndPortents}} Signs and Portents".Portents]]". The episode's "A" plot is some fairly standard and unimportant thing involving Raiders [space pirates] and a Centauri artifact called The Eye. The "B" plot, involving the first appearance of the enigmatic Mr Morden and the question "What do you want?", turns out to be ''incredibly'' important and crucial to the rest of the series -- but the episode's retrospective importance only kicks in at the first season finale.\\
18th Dec '17 4:47:19 PM ClintEastwood
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** "A Bugs Life" has a story about Peacekeepers and a virus capable of possessing people, but the repercussions of that episode would echo throughout the series and beyond.
** "Beware of Dog" had a fairly ridiculous main plot, with a B plot of Crichton going crazy and imagining Scorpius around every corner -- but it's a brilliant setup of the entire plotline for the rest of the season, one that would continue throughout much of the series.
** The very first time Crichton hallucinated Scorpius was in "Crackers Don't Matter", a nutty, off-the-wall episode where everyone's going crazy and fighting over crackers.
** "A Human Reaction", a well done though not especially memorable episode - until it's revealed a few episodes later that ''the'' major plot point of the ''entire series'' was set up during its events.
** "Won't Get Fooled Again" seems like just another one of the series' frequent [[BizarroEpisode visits to Bizarroworld]], but the ending reveals the existence of [[spoiler:the neural chip in Crichton's head]] and its accompanying [[spoiler:mental clone of Scorpius]], both of which are crucial to the MythArc.
** "Eat Me" is just another MonsterOfTheWeek episode, and just another episode where Crichton gets split into duplicates (yes, it happened more than once). Then at the end it turns out that the duplication of Crichton was ''permanent''. Cue most of the rest of the season being split between two groups of characters on separate ships, each with its own Crichton.

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** "A Bugs Life" "[[{{Recap/FarscapeS01E18ABugsLife}} A Bug's Life]]" has a story about Peacekeepers and a virus capable of possessing people, but the repercussions of that episode would echo throughout the series and beyond.
** "Beware "[[{{Recap/FarscapeS02E14BewareOfDog}} Beware of Dog" Dog]]" had a fairly ridiculous main plot, with a B plot of Crichton going crazy and imagining Scorpius around every corner -- but it's a brilliant setup of the entire plotline for the rest of the season, one that would continue throughout much of the series.
** The very first time Crichton hallucinated Scorpius was in "Crackers "[[{{Recap/FarscapeS02E04CrackersDontMatter}} Crackers Don't Matter", Matter]]", a nutty, off-the-wall episode where everyone's going crazy and fighting over crackers.
** "A "[[{{Recap/FarscapeS01E16AHumanReaction}} A Human Reaction", Reaction]]", a well done though not especially memorable episode - until it's revealed a few episodes later that ''the'' major plot point of the ''entire series'' was set up during its events.
** "Won't "[[{{Recap/FarscapeS02E15WontGetFooledAgain}} Won't Get Fooled Again" Again]]" seems like just another one of the series' frequent [[BizarroEpisode visits to Bizarroworld]], but the ending reveals the existence of [[spoiler:the neural chip in Crichton's head]] and its accompanying [[spoiler:mental clone of Scorpius]], both of which are crucial to the MythArc.
** "Eat Me" "[[{{Recap/FarscapeS03E06EatMe}} Eat Me]]" is just another MonsterOfTheWeek episode, and just another episode where Crichton gets split into duplicates (yes, it happened more than once). Then at the end it turns out that the duplication of Crichton was ''permanent''. Cue most of the rest of the season being split between two groups of characters on separate ships, each with its own Crichton.



** "Balance of Terror" and "Errand of Mercy" introduce the Romulans and Klingons, each of whom goes from VillainOfTheWeek to major galactic power throughout the rest of the franchise.

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** "Balance "[[{{Recap/StarTrekS1E14BalanceOfTerror}} Balance of Terror" Terror]]" and "Errand "[[{{Recap/StarTrekS1E26ErrandOfMercy}} Errand of Mercy" Mercy]]" introduce the Romulans and Klingons, each of whom goes from VillainOfTheWeek to major galactic power throughout the rest of the franchise.



** "11001001" and, to a greater degree, "Elementary, Dear Data", introduce the idea of self-aware holographic programs with Minuet and [[Literature/SherlockHolmes Professor Moriarty]], respectively, which would pave the way for other such characters like the Doctor on ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'' and Vic Fontaine on ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine''.
** The episode "The Neutral Zone" has two plots: the A plot is a fish-out-of-water story about twentiety-century earth humans running amok on the Enterprise; occasionally we touch on how outposts along the Romulan Neutral Zone have been disappearing. This secondary plot is the first time in the franchise that the Borg's influence was hinted at, and similar disappearances would be discussed in their first appearance ("Q Who") and the landmark Borg two-parter "Best Of Both Worlds."
** "Sins of the Father" is the first Trek episode to actually feature Klingon society, as Worf tries to clear his deceased father's name when he is blamed for helping the Romulans attack Khitomer, despite dying from the attacks. The episode shows that [[InherentInTheSystem the 24th century Klingon government is extremely corrupt]], as it's discovered that Duras' father was the real traitor, [[DeceasedFallGuyGambit but the Klingon High Council goes along with it to prevent a civil war]], which will have repercussions lasting all the way through ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'', [[BookEnds getting rectified by Worf, fittingly enough]].
** "The Wounded". By itself it seems like another diplomatic problem-solving episode. But it is the introduction of the Cardassians, as well as inserting a {{Retcon}} changing the previously-asserted general peace in which the Federation was said to have existed for decades and replacing it with a GreatOffscreenWar. This would serve as the starting point for the emergence of the Maquis and the Dominion War over on ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'' -- which in turn serves as the catalyst for ''Series/StarTrekVoyager''. Also, Wesley Crusher's departure in "Journey's End" and the defection of Ro Laren during TNG's penultimate episode stem from this episode.

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** "11001001" "[[{{Recap/StarTrekTheNextGenerationS1E1411001001}} 11001001]]" and, to a greater degree, "Elementary, "[[{{Recap/StarTrekTheNextGenerationS2E3ElementaryDearData}} Elementary, Dear Data", Data]]", introduce the idea of self-aware holographic programs with Minuet and [[Literature/SherlockHolmes Professor Moriarty]], respectively, which would pave the way for other such characters like the Doctor on ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'' and Vic Fontaine on ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine''.
** "[[{{Recap/StarTrekTheNextGenerationS1E25TheNeutralZone}} The episode "The Neutral Zone" Zone]]" has two plots: the A plot is a fish-out-of-water story about twentiety-century earth humans running amok on the Enterprise; occasionally we touch on how outposts along the Romulan Neutral Zone have been disappearing. This secondary plot is the first time in the franchise that the Borg's influence was hinted at, and similar disappearances would be discussed in their first appearance ("Q Who") ("[[{{Recap/StarTrekTheNextGenerationS2E16QWho}} Q Who]]") and the landmark Borg two-parter "Best Of "[[{{Recap/StarTrekTheNextGenerationS3E26S4E1TheBestOfBothWorlds}} The Best of Both Worlds."
Worlds]]".
** "Sins "[[{{Recap/StarTrekTheNextGenerationS3E17SinsOfTheFather}} Sins of the Father" Father]]" is the first Trek episode to actually feature Klingon society, as Worf tries to clear his deceased father's name when he is blamed for helping the Romulans attack Khitomer, despite dying from the attacks. The episode shows that [[InherentInTheSystem the 24th century Klingon government is extremely corrupt]], as it's discovered that Duras' father was the real traitor, [[DeceasedFallGuyGambit but the Klingon High Council goes along with it to prevent a civil war]], which will have repercussions lasting all the way through ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'', [[BookEnds getting rectified by Worf, fittingly enough]].
** "The Wounded"."[[{{Recap/StarTrekTheNextGenerationS4E12TheWounded}} The Wounded]]". By itself it seems like another diplomatic problem-solving episode. But it is the introduction of the Cardassians, as well as inserting a {{Retcon}} changing the previously-asserted general peace in which the Federation was said to have existed for decades and replacing it with a GreatOffscreenWar. This would serve as the starting point for the emergence of the Maquis and the Dominion War over on ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'' -- which in turn serves as the catalyst for ''Series/StarTrekVoyager''. Also, Wesley Crusher's departure in "Journey's End" and the defection of Ro Laren during TNG's penultimate episode stem from this episode.



** An early random Ferengi comedy episode "Rules of Acquisition" reveals that something called "the Dominion" is a major power in the Gamma Quadrant. The war against the Dominion is ''the'' MythArc of the show.
** Season 5's "Rapture" was a heavy Bajor episode, focusing on the planet's future and Sisko's role as Emissary. The main thrust of the plot is Sisko gaining visions of the future, which are slowly killing him. Before Bashir operates to remove this ability, one vision was of locusts hovering over Bajor before moving onto Cardassia. A later two-parter saw the Dominion enter the Alpha Quadrant and set up shop in its newest member, Cardassia. [[spoiler:The same two-parter also revealed that Bashir had been replaced by a Changeling by this time, offering a new reasoning for "Bashir" wanting to operate on Sisko]].

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** An early random Ferengi comedy episode "Rules "[[{{Recap/StarTrekDeepSpaceNineS02E07RulesOfAcquisition}} Rules of Acquisition" Acquisition]]" reveals that something called "the Dominion" is a major power in the Gamma Quadrant. The war against the Dominion is ''the'' MythArc of the show.
** Season 5's "Rapture" "[[{{Recap/StarTrekDeepSpaceNineS05E10Rapture}} Rapture]]" was a heavy Bajor episode, focusing on the planet's future and Sisko's role as Emissary. The main thrust of the plot is Sisko gaining visions of the future, which are slowly killing him. Before Bashir operates to remove this ability, one vision was of locusts hovering over Bajor before moving onto Cardassia. A later two-parter saw the Dominion enter the Alpha Quadrant and set up shop in its newest member, Cardassia. [[spoiler:The same two-parter also revealed that Bashir had been replaced by a Changeling by this time, offering a new reasoning for "Bashir" wanting to operate on Sisko]].



** The early episode "Phantom Traveler" which appears to be a straight MonsterOfTheWeek episode with the brothers having to exorcise a demon who causes planes to crash ForTheEvulz. Not only do we learn later in the season that [[spoiler: the one who killed the boys' mother and sam's girlfriend is also a demon]] but demons become the major threat for the next few seasons with the rise in demonic possessions being a major plot point.

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** The early episode "Phantom Traveler" "[[Recap/SupernaturalS01E04PhantomTraveller Phantom Traveler]]" which appears to be a straight MonsterOfTheWeek episode with the brothers having to exorcise a demon who causes planes to crash ForTheEvulz. Not only do we learn later in the season that [[spoiler: the one who killed the boys' mother and sam's girlfriend is also a demon]] but demons become the major threat for the next few seasons with the rise in demonic possessions being a major plot point.
13th Dec '17 7:47:53 AM Gamermaster
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* Episode 3 of ''Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha'' seems like a standard MonsterOfTheWeek plot (especially because the series abandons that format with the introduction of [[DarkMagicalGirl Fate]] the following episode), but it's probably one of the most important episodes in the entire franchise. It established Nanoha's habit of pushing herself to the point of exhaustion (something that would come back to bite her ''hard''), showed the beginning of her signature [[WaveMotionGun fighting style]], and saw the creation of the [[ChekhovsSkill Area Search spell]].
11th Dec '17 12:41:38 PM CheeseDogX
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The A Plot does have one rather important thing happen in it; it's the first appearance of [[BigBad The Shadows]].

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The A Plot does have one rather important thing happen in it; it's the first appearance of [[BigBad The Shadows]]. They even get name dropped, but in a way that most viewers would dismiss as unimportant on a first viewing.
11th Dec '17 12:35:45 PM CheeseDogX
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** ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets'' set up ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheHalfBloodPrince'' seven years in advance. It set up the concepts of Horcruxes through [[spoiler: Riddle's diary]], it introduced the four Hogwarts founders and established Voldemort's connection to the Slytherin bloodline, the basilisk fang from the Chamber would later be used [[spoiler: to destroy two of the Horcruxes]], and the idea that Voldemort inadvertently passed some of his abilities to Harry would prove to be ''major'' {{foreshadowing}} for the revelation that [[spoiler: Harry was an accidental Horcrux]]. It introduced Ron's sister Ginny (who would become Harry's primary love interest by ''Half-Blood Prince''), and the concept of [[FantasticRacism "blood purity" and Pureblood supremacy]] would become major lynchpins of the mythos by the end. And in one scene, Nearly Headless Nick convinces Peeves to destroy a cabinet to distract Filch for Harry; the broken cabinet becomes a major plot point in ''Half-Blood Prince''.

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** ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets'' set up ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheHalfBloodPrince'' seven years in advance. It set up the concepts of Horcruxes through [[spoiler: Riddle's diary]], it introduced the four Hogwarts founders and established Voldemort's connection to the Slytherin bloodline, the basilisk fang from the Chamber would later be used [[spoiler: to destroy two of the Horcruxes]], and the idea that Voldemort inadvertently passed some of his abilities to Harry would prove to be ''major'' {{foreshadowing}} for the revelation that [[spoiler: Harry was an accidental Horcrux]]. It introduced Ron's sister Ginny (who would become Harry's primary love interest by ''Half-Blood Prince''), and the concept of [[FantasticRacism "blood purity" and Pureblood supremacy]] would become major lynchpins of the mythos by the end. And in one scene, Nearly Headless Nick convinces Peeves to destroy a cabinet to distract Filch for Harry; the broken cabinet becomes a major plot point in ''Half-Blood Prince''. Not bad for a work that at first glance looks like a book-long WackyWaysideTribe.
21st Nov '17 12:07:33 AM PaulA
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** Similarly, [[Recap/DoctorWhoS29E8HumanNature "Human Nature"]] and [[Recap/DoctorWhoS29E9TheFamilyOfBlood "The Family of Blood"]] appeared to be an updated telling of a ''Doctor Who'' novel, leading to a unique circumstance where fans familiar with the spinoff media were actually less likely to realize these episodes were this trope, which comes off as exceptional filler otherwise. [[spoiler:In fact, they set up the Master's return.]]

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** Similarly, [[Recap/DoctorWhoS29E8HumanNature "Human Nature"]] and [[Recap/DoctorWhoS29E9TheFamilyOfBlood "The Family of Blood"]] appeared to be an updated telling retelling of [[Recap/DoctorWhoNewAdventuresHumanNature a ''Doctor Who'' novel, tie-in novel]], leading to a unique circumstance where fans familiar with the spinoff media were actually less likely to realize these episodes were this trope, which comes off as exceptional filler otherwise. [[spoiler:In fact, they set up the Master's return.]]
19th Nov '17 1:06:06 PM CrystalMemoria
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* ''Manga/DetectiveConan'': The anime adaptaion of Detective Conan took a lot of freedoms from the very beginning. This turned out to be problematic when a seemingly unimportant case from early on (which had been adapted in the epsiode ''Mytery Mastermind'' and altered so one minor character does not die) turned out to be very important: The minor character was Ai Haibaras sister and her death triggered her sister's HeelFaceTurn. Ai then becomes a main character, one of the few people that know Shinichi's secret and the only one in the same situation. When the manga reached this point in the story the anime had to create a filler - ''The Black Organization: 1 Billion Yen Robbery Case'' - that told the exact same story with the same names and everything of ''Mytery Mastermind'', only with Ais sister dying. Hence, a lot of confusion.

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* ''Manga/DetectiveConan'': The anime adaptaion of Detective Conan took a lot of freedoms from the very beginning. This turned out to be problematic when a seemingly unimportant case from early on (which had been adapted in the epsiode ''Mytery Mastermind'' and altered so one minor character does not die) turned out to be very important: The minor character was Ai Haibaras Haibara's sister and her death triggered her sister's HeelFaceTurn. Ai then becomes a main character, one of the few people that know Shinichi's secret and the only one in the same situation. When the manga reached this point in the story the anime had to create a filler - ''The Black Organization: 1 Billion Yen Robbery Case'' - that told the exact same story with the same names and everything of ''Mytery Mastermind'', only with Ais Ai's sister dying. Hence, a lot of confusion.
2nd Nov '17 4:37:21 PM Premonition45
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** "Sins of the Father" is the first Trek episode to actually feature Klingon society, as Worf tries to clear his deceased father's name when he is blamed for helping the Romulans attack Khitomer, despite dying from the attacks. The episode shows that [[InherentInTheSystem the 24th century Klingon government is extremely corrupt]], as it's discovered that Duras' father was the real traitor, [[DeceasedFallGuyGambit but the Klingon High Council goes along with it to prevent a civil war]], which will have repercussions lasting all the way through ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'', [[BookEnds getting rectified by Worf, fittingly enough]].
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.InnocuouslyImportantEpisode