Created By: CaveCat on December 1, 2013 Last Edited By: CaveCat on May 12, 2014

Clock Wipe

The screen is wiped in a similar matter as that of a clock face to indicate that time has passed.

Name Space:
Page Type:
Sometimes, when you're doing a project, it takes a lot of time, maybe even a few hours. In fiction, the best way to depict the passing of time is to have the screen become wiped in a similar matter as a clock face in order to indicate how fast time has passed.

Internal Subtrope of Idiosyncratic Wipes

Compare Cartoonland Time

See also Spinning Clock Hands


  • Used more than once in each of the Star Wars films.

Live-Action TV

Western Animation
  • Used in the third act of Mr. Bogus episode "B-TV", where Tommy and his father have made a complete mess of the kitchen in a chaotic attempt to follow the instructions on Mole's cooking show on TV.
  • Happens twice in the Angry Birds Toons episode "Oh Gnome!", both after Matilda's attempts to get rid of the gnome backfire.

Needs More Examples
Community Feedback Replies: 26
  • December 2, 2013
    I'm not sure if this is notable or common enough to be a trope.
  • December 2, 2013
    May fall under Idiosyncratic Wipes.
  • December 2, 2013
    ^^Oh, come on, I know that this has been used in a lot of TV shows and movies.
  • December 2, 2013
    Can you name one? I've seen this too, and it's a logical connection, but I can't think of a case where it was used for Time Skips.
  • December 5, 2013
    The problem I'm seeing here isn't that this type of screen wipe is too rare. It's just that I can't think of any instances where it was specifically used to play up the "time passing" aspect of the transition. Pretty much any screen wipe implies the passage of time, so this doesn't seem more notable in that regard than other screen wipes.
  • December 10, 2013
    Too specific... I recall cross-fade being a more common transition to show time passing, but not something like a clock-wipe.
  • December 18, 2013
    I know it's been used in a few episodes of Arthur and The Simpsons.

    It's also subverted/parodied in the first (?) Futurama episode, where the clock only moves by a few minutes.
  • December 18, 2013
    And yeah, this is definitely a real trope. My friends and I joked about it in fourth and fifth grade.
  • December 19, 2013
    ^^Would you be glad to give context on those examples?
  • December 21, 2013
  • December 24, 2013
    ^^I don't know if I could, but not because I'm lazy. I just don't remember which episodes.
  • December 26, 2013
    Maybe just Clockwise Wipe? The "clock face" part I find distracting.
  • December 27, 2013
    For the laconic, I think it would be better to say "indicate that time has passed".
  • January 6, 2014
  • January 17, 2014
    Stumbled upon this page, doing a GIS on "Pokemon "clock wipe"" gives four other images showing it.

    So Pokemon are using them, but I haven't really seen the show so I can't give any context.
  • February 7, 2014
    Happens twice in the Angry Birds Toons episode "Oh Gnome!", both after Matilda's attempts to get rid of the gnome backfire.
  • February 7, 2014
    I guess no-one have seen Anime/Pokemon and can give some context.
  • February 16, 2014
    It's used in Return Of The Jedi, after the Ewoks tell the heroes about the secret entrance to the bunker, and I'm sure that's not the only Star Wars example.
  • March 3, 2014
    I just watched the 1931 film of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, which actually does use clockwise wipes, but not to suggest that time is passing, just as an Idiosyncratic Wipe. Not sure there are enough examples of that to make this a trope.
  • March 4, 2014
    ^Maybe instead of listing every example that includes a Clockwise Wipe, I should delete all of the examples and put in No Examples Please, like a few other tropes have, such as Gravity Is A Harsh Mistress, Comedic Underwear Exposure, The Untwist, etc.
  • March 4, 2014
    ^ what would justify this having no listed examples, though?
  • March 20, 2014
    I think this is pretty well covered under Idiosyncratic Wipes and see no particular reason why it should be split off as a subtrope.

    If it is, though, I'd petition to have the name changed to Clock Wipe, which is the industry term. Clockwise Wipe makes it sound like Clock Wipes that move counterclockwise (not common, but they exist) wouldn't count.
  • April 17, 2014
    Just make this an Internal Subtrope of Idiosyncratic Wipes.
  • April 23, 2014
    ^ Seconded.
  • May 9, 2014
    Movie Maker Effects please. or Hollywood Uses Movie Maker

    though yeah, thirding DAN 004.
  • May 12, 2014
    As the OP hasn't been around in over two months, this is now considered Up For Grabs. Since the general consensus seems to be that this trope is either totally redundant or, at best should be an Internal Subtrope of an existing one, I'm going to go ahead and discard it.