Created By: tryerOctober 14, 2011 Last Edited By: tryerOctober 24, 2011

Like Watching Paint Die

A person is taking way too much on-screen time to die.

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Do We Have This One ? Rolling Updates. Needs More Examples.

I, am the final trope, of my generation.. I have seen many things in my lifetime.

...What? Yes I'm sure I am dying, now let me finish my recollection. Lets see, covered the family, the planet, civilization...Ah yes, my first memory...

You get the picture.

Like Watching Paint Die is a situation in which we know a character is dying, but is taking way too much on-screen time to die. So much so that you or even the characters start wondering if he is actually going to keel over before the onlookers do. This trope is mostly used for comedy, like someone looking like they've died opens their eyes to say a few FAMOUSLASTWORDS, multiple times. If used for drama this trope can ruin a Crowning Moment Of Heartwarming since the basis of the tropes is a death that took too long.

This trope is usually kept company by its lesser-extent version Final Speech, its cliched friend Famous Last Words, and if they (writers or characters) get tired of him, Killed Mid Sentence. Contrast Instant Death Bullet and Dropped A Bridge On Him.


Examples

Community Feedback Replies: 24
  • October 14, 2011
    queenbri
    Hamlet tells the audience that he's either dying or dead about 4 times before he actually does so.
  • October 14, 2011
    Darthcaliber
    ^ furthermore Laertes gets stabbed with the same poisoned blade after Hamlet, yet somehow dies before him.
  • October 14, 2011
    wanderlustwarrior
    In The Venture Bros, a mook thinks he's dying slowly, and guilt trips Brock into staying with him and singing to him until he does die.

    In the Barats And Bereta video parodying death tropes, the "bad acting bullets" causes several cases of drawn out deaths.
  • October 14, 2011
    UglyShirts
    Spoofed in The Mask.
  • October 14, 2011
    JonnyB
    Amilyn in Buffy The Vampire Slayer takes over half a minute to die, hamming up his death scene to the hilt.

    See also Almost Dead Guy.
  • October 14, 2011
    RedneckRocker
    There was a Saturday Night Life sketch from the mid-90s that took place at a dinner theater. One of the players, played by Chris Farley, dragged out his death for a very long time, annoying the other actors.
  • October 14, 2011
    NoirGrimoir
    I swear we have this.
  • October 14, 2011
    surgoshan
    • In Maskerade one character plays this for laughs by dying of drama while complaining how people in opera always take so long to die.
  • October 14, 2011
    randomsurfer
    Depending on the director/actor/production, Bottom's death scene in "Pyramus and Thisbe" in A Midsummer Nights Dream can be very drawn out.
  • October 14, 2011
    JonnyB
    This is often how a Large Ham dies.
  • October 16, 2011
    Hadashi
    More commonly known as an 'Operatic' death. There is a quote from Terry Pratchett's Maskerade (which concerns 'dying' actors who nevertheless spend twenty minuites singing before they fall over) that would be perfect for this.
  • October 16, 2011
    ParadiscaCorbasi
    I know it wasn't intended this way but a lot of people took the death of Trinity in The Matrix Revolutions this way, because her Final Speech just went on and on and on and on...
  • October 16, 2011
    Speedball
    In the original "Buffy The Vampire Slayer" movie, the #2 vampire is staked by Buffy, but spends the rest of the movie writhing around, even to the end credits.
  • October 16, 2011
    randomsurfer
    ...

    Are you saying that George Bush died? No. George HW Bush got sick during a dinner in Japan but he didn't die. And it wasn't during a speech, it was the dinner portion of the state dinner.
  • October 16, 2011
    LikeMindedMonkey
    I seem to recall something like this happening in a graphic novel called Amulet: the Stonekeeper. The protagonists' great (maybe insert a couple more greats here) grandfather basically /chooses/ to give a long, drawn-out speech about how they have to protect Yon Magical Mac Guffin Stone or the world will be in terrible peril etc. etc. then the Lights Go Off. It was obviously intended to be serious but it just looks silly.
  • October 17, 2011
    3niner
    In the Laertes / Hamlet example, Laertes died from the stab wound, while Hamlet died from poison. Of course, the real reason that Hamlet died so slowly is that he had five minutes of stuff to say at the end (it's in the script). :-)
  • October 17, 2011
    CharacterInWhite
    Hector delivers a 500 line monologue in the Iliad after being stabbed in the neck.

  • October 17, 2011
    ZombieAladdin
    Heh, I love how Hamlet is the thing the most people think of coming here. It was spoofed in South Park, where Philip of the Terrance and Philip duo had retired from TV work to do Shakespeare. The boys find him acting out Hamlet and catch the ending seemingly in fast forward. Philip, who plays Hamlet, still needs about 20 seconds to say what he wants before he dies.
  • October 17, 2011
    SithkingZero
    • Parodied in the first Scary Godmother by Harry, a very hammy werewolf who is trying to scare children. The joke is that the monsters are trying to convince some bullies that Hannah, the protagonist, is brave and can kill monsters with her flashlight. Harry takes so long to "Die," while making a performance worthy of Shatner himself that other characters are openly giving non-verbal signs for him to hurry up.
  • October 18, 2011
    Jhimmibhob
    The ballet Giselle goes to intermission with a lengthy choreographed death scene guaranteed to make audiences check their watches.
  • October 24, 2011
    Darthcaliber
    The Hamlet/Laertes reason is open to individual interpretation. The script simply says Laertes "wounds Hamlet" then they "scuffle during which they exchange blades" then Hamlet "wounds Laertes" it doesn't specify where they get hit or if it's a stab or cut. As verbose as Shakespeare was in dialogue, his stage directions were very short and non-descriptive. (It does say he "stabs" Claudius then forces him to drink the poisoned wine so that at least is explained)
  • October 24, 2011
    yrrw
    Most excellent title - congrats!
  • October 24, 2011
    Generality
    People have felt this way about Trinity's death in Matrix Revolutions. Although considering the nature of her wound, realistically it's surprising she died as quickly as she did.
  • October 24, 2011
    Abodos
    • The Tenth Doctor from Doctor Who takes the last half-hour of "The End of Time" to die. Justified, as he's holding back from regenerating so that he can visit all his companions one last time before he becomes the Eleventh Doctor.

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