A character is filling something. Something big happens. The person stares in awe as whatever s/he's filling overflows.
A classic visual gag, this is when a character is filling something (say, pouring coffee in a cup) and is then distracted by something so interesting, so awe-inspiring, or so dumbfoundedly weird that they don't even notice when the cup starts running over. Played for laughs, and used to underline the impressiveness of whatever is going on.
Examples:Anime and Manga
- This happens early in Fullmetal Alchemist during Father Cornello's Engineered Public Confession. The waiter doesn't realize he's overfilled a customer's mug because both of them are staring furiously at the radio.
- This happens twice in the Ichabod segment of The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad: once during Katrina's song, and once in Brom Bones's song. Actually, thrice, if you count Ichabod emptying a whole shaker of pepper onto a hardboiled egg by mistake.
- This happens in Mulan, when Mulan tries to impress the Matchmaker during the tea ceremony. As she prepares to pour a cup, she notices that the Matchmaker is accidentally smearing black on her face and she freezes in shock while the tea continues spilling over the table.
- There is a scene in Shaolin Soccer where Iron Head and Steel Leg start singing at the local bar and everyone freezes in mid-bite or in the middle of pouring beer as they are stunned by their appalling performance.
- This happens in Strange Voices (a Lifetime movie about schizophrenia) when the patient is apparently distracted by her delusions and pours orange juice on the table. Drama ensues.
- Inverted in Arrested Development. Michael is trying to make a clean escape from his first one-night-stand when his date walks back in the bedroom with coffee. She gives him a mug and begins to pour, telling him to "say when," except she misses the mug entirely, pouring coffee on the ground. Michael is dumbfounded for a moment before he places his mug under the coffee. Turns out his date is blind.
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