When It Rains It Pours


(permanent link) added: 2010-02-20 04:39:07 sponsor: JackButler (last reply: 2010-02-20 11:19:29)

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When it rains in media, it often never seems to restrict itself to a light sprinkling or a drizzle. On the contrary, if it rains at all, it rains in buckets. This trope is when A Storm Is Coming, and when it gets here, it immediately opens up with a torrential downpour (sometimes prefaced with Dramatic Thunder). It never starts with a light rainfall that grows into a larger storm. When it rains, it pours.

The reason for this, of course, is that heavy rain is easier to pick up on camera than the usual light sprinkling seen in nature, thus directors and producers will choose to intentionally drench their performers for dramatic effect. Most such scenes are created using a sprinkler frame suspended over the scene, operated by a worker with a hose. In such cases the wide shots tend to have weather that looks very clement; in close-up, cue the downpour, with lots of shots of the performer's soaking wet hair and clothing.


Examples:

Comic Books
  • In Sin City, it generally only rains when a major plot point comes to the surface, like Marv realizing some crucial facts about Goldie and her reason for coming to him, or Dwight and the Girls of Old Town finding out that the abusive scumbag they just killed is not only a cop, but is a decorated hero.
  • Watchmen: Probably because a light rain just doesn't fit the gritty, depressing feel of the story.

Film
  • In The Matrix, the two times it rains, it rains in buckets.
  • In the American-produced version of Godzilla, every time it rains, it rains like this.
  • The Lord of the Rings films feature heavy rain at Bree and Helm's Deep, and a blizzard in the pass of Caradhras. Otherwise, there is no precipitation.
  • The last time it rained as hard as it does in The Crow, Noah built himself a boat.
  • Visually lampshaded in The Truman Show when it suddenly comes bucketing down on cue during a sad moment. Truman moves a few steps and... it is perfectly dry. Then the streams of heavy rain literally moves over to pour on him.
  • Forrest Gump: In a letter to Jenny, Forrest goes on at length about the Vietnamese monsoon season. All during Tom Hanks' narration, we see the titular character coming very close to drowning in the torrential downpour.
  • In Poltergeist, the rain went from zero to sixty in seconds.

Live-Action TV
  • A 1989 Cosby Show Thanksgiving episode used this to set up a series of gags where Cliff has to go back and forth (in said downpour) to pick up items for the holiday dinner.

Video Games
  • The Legend of Zelda Occarina Of Time has a lot of these.
  • Pokemon: There are certain areas in the game where it always rains, and it rains like this. Aside from these areas, there is no rain in the game.
    • There is even a Pokemon with the special ability Drizzle. It does not make a drizzle. It makes freaking floods happen.

Western Animation


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