Created By: EdnaWalker on April 23, 2010
Troped

Human Traffic Jam

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Do We Have This? Rolling Updates.

A group of people are walking in a straight line. Suddenly, the person at (or near) the front of the line stops walking for whatever reason. This causes everyone behind the person to bump into one another. This gag is mostly seen in Western Animation.

Examples:
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
    • That one Snow White example is referenced in Psychoville, where the dwarves are told when they go on stage and see Snow White for the first time, they stop and tumble over. It's supposed to prompt the audience to laugh.
  • The The Jungle Book elephants scene was taken from a short called Goliath II.
  • The Magic School Bus of all places.
  • RealLife: Karl von Clausewitz devoted a number of pages to the effects of traffic in military collumns.
  • Princess Princess : The three princesses have been on the stage and are leaving it for a scene change. Mikoto is at front but suddenly stops which cause Tohru and Yuujirou to bump into him and another. The reason to stop: outside the stage waits Mikotos sister and girlfriend, the last two persons he want to see him in girl's clothes and who he actually have asked to go home to prevent it. Mikoto then black out.
  • If The Three Stooges never used this, they'd miss the boat.
  • The hyenas in The Lion King did this. Bonus points for one of them getting bumped off the edge of a cliff into brambles as a result.
  • Another Disney example in Mars and Beyond, while the secretary is being pursued by the Martian leader and his minions. After she changes into her superhero costume, she holds up her hand to stop the leader and his minions slam into him. Watch it here, starting at 7:00.
  • Inverted on Danny Phantom. The girls in the pageant are all walking with books on their heads. Sam is at the back of the line reading hers so she doesn't realize the line is moving at a different speed than she's walking; so she bumps into the last girl in front of her and starts a chain reaction.
  • An American Tail: as the Mousekewitzes board the boat to America, Fievel keeps stopping to ask questions, causing the mice behind him to crash to a halt, eliciting cries of "Keep walking!"
  • Mentioned in Jingo. Vimes, at the head of a procession, spaces out and begins slowing down and finally comes to a halt, and the entire procession does the same, with jostling and bumping for those slow to keep up with events.
  • Happens in the Fellowship of the Ring film, when the Hobbits are running away from Farmer Maggot.
Community Feedback Replies: 18
  • February 17, 2010
    Arivne
    Film
  • February 17, 2010
    jason taylor
  • February 18, 2010
    DS9guy
    • And that elephants bit was taken from the short Goliath II.

  • February 18, 2010
    DannebrogSpy
    Princess Princess : The three princesses have been on the stage and are leaving it for a scene change. Mikoto is at front but suddenly stops which cause Tohru and Yuujirou to bump into him and another. The reason to stop: outside the stage waits Mikotos sister and girlfriend, the last two persons he want to see him in girl's clothes and who he actually have asked to go home to prevent it. Mikoto then black out.
  • April 6, 2010
    DS9guy
  • April 6, 2010
    randomsurfer
    If The Three Stooges never used this they missed the boat.
  • April 6, 2010
    TJ
    I don't know why, but I've heard this phenomenon called the Kansas Conga.

    • The hyenas in The Lion King did this. Bonus points for one of them getting bumped off the edge of a cliff into brambles as a result.
  • April 7, 2010
    triassicranger
    The one Snow White is referenced in Psychoville, where the dwarves are told when they go on stage and see Snow White for the first time, they stop and tumble over. It's supposed to prompt the audience to laugh.
  • April 8, 2010
    Arivne
    Film
    • Another Disney example in Mars and Beyond, while the secretary is being pursued by the Martian leader and his minions. After she changes into her superhero costume, she holds up her hand to stop the leader and his minions slam into him. Watch it here, starting at 7:00.
  • April 8, 2010
    dotchan
    Related to Drone Jam, perhaps?
  • April 8, 2010
    Unknown Troper
    Use Human Traffic Jam. Living sounds more like a Genius Loci -deuxhero
  • April 11, 2010
    ParadiscaCorbasi
    • Inverted on Danny Phantom. The girls in the pageant are all walking with books on their heads. Sam is at the back of the line reading hers so she doesn't realize the line is moving at a different speed than she's walking; so she bumps into the last girl in front of her and starts a chain reaction.
  • April 21, 2010
    Unknown Troper
    An American Tail: as the Mousekewitzes board the boat to America, Fievel keeps stopping to ask questions, causing the mice behind him to crash to a halt, eliciting cries of "Keep walking!"
  • April 21, 2010
    Cidolfas
    Mentioned in Jingo. Vimes, at the head of a procession, spaces out and begins slowing down and finally comes to a halt, and the entire procession does the same, with jostling and bumping for those slow to keep up with events.
  • April 21, 2010
    Fiwen9430
    Happens in the Fellowship of the Ring film, when the Hobbits are running away from Farmer Maggot.
  • April 23, 2010
    EdnaWalker
    BUMP?
  • April 23, 2010
    EdnaWalker
    Can we launch this trope now?
  • April 24, 2010
    Arivne
    It's been on YKTTW for 2 months, you have plenty of examples, and Human Traffic Jam sounds good as a name.

    I'd say we're ready for launch.
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