Created By: pcw2727 on September 7, 2011 Last Edited By: lebrel on March 20, 2012

Finishing with a flourish

Ending an ordinary activity with a dramatic gesture

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope
Seen It a Million Times

A character is doing something relatively ordinary. They may be writing a letter, playing piano, or maybe engaging in some Rapid-Fire Typing. When they finish what they're doing they do so with a bit of emphasis. This could mean slamming down the last key or two while typing, hitting the last note extra hard, or extending the final pen stroke to the point that their hand waves in the air. Whatever they do, it's to make it extra clear that they're finished with what they're doing, at least for now.

When done as part of Hollywood Hacking it can signal a triumphant finish. Occasionally accompanied by an audible, "Voila!" or "Bingo, We're in".

When something less mundane is finished with a flourish its usually a Finishing Move.

Examples:

Anime and Manga
  • Hanaukyō Maid Tai, 2nd season La Verite episode 8. Grace is typing on a computer keyboard, trying to defeat an intruding hacker. After finishing a series of keystrokes she says "O.K., gotcha!" and dramatically stabs down to press a key. She does it again in episode 9.
  • Death Note: Seen almost every time Light writes anything.
  • Bakuman。: Eiji uses this constantly when drawing; it's almost his Stock Pose.

Film
  • GoldenEye: Happens. (anyone familiar with this film who can give more context?)
  • Running Man: The hero signs a contract on a lawyer's back - and uses the pen to pin the document there.
  • Star Trek The Voyage Home: Scotty does this after typing.
  • Office Space: The typing version is seen a couple of times.
  • TRON (original): After the MCP has appropriated CLU (not that one), Flynn tries to execute some more commands. While not shown on-screen, the final keystroke occurs after a slight pause and is much more forceful than the previous ones.

Music
  • This is a very common trope with piano performances both classical and modern.
  • Mark Russell (pianist/PBS musical satirist) used to do this at the end of all his songs.

[[AC:Real Life]
  • Paraphs at the ends of signatures are a visual equivalent (which had the additional purpose of guarding against forgery).
Community Feedback Replies: 31
  • September 7, 2011
    pcw2727
    Scotty does this in Star Trek The Voyage Home.

    Often it can signal a triumphant finish, if they're revealing something via their typing. Occasionally accompanied by an audible, "Voila!".
  • September 7, 2011
    BooleanEarth
    You should alter the description so that it can include musical examples, as this is a very common trope with piano performances both classical and modern.
  • September 11, 2011
    pcw2727
    That's kind of stretching the idea. What you're describing is more of a musical style then a trope.
  • September 11, 2011
    BooleanEarth
    Not really, but ok. It's your trope :)

    What I was describing may be a different trope, but it certainly is a trope.
  • September 11, 2011
    pcw2727
    It could be a "real life" example, or just an entry under music.
  • September 26, 2011
    pcw2727
    bump
  • September 26, 2011
    SonicLover
    To be perfectly honest I've gotten into the habit of doing this myself sometimes.
  • September 26, 2011
    pcw2727
  • September 26, 2011
    lebrel
    Seems too specific; maybe switch the name to something more along the lines of With A Flourish and expand it to cover doing the last movement of something (typing, writing, playing the piano, decorating a cake) with an exaggerated ornamental gesture?

    Also see What Do You Mean Its Not Awesome for the even more exaggerated version.
  • September 27, 2011
    BooleanEarth
    ^You made me think of Light writing.
  • October 9, 2011
    pcw2727
    bump
  • October 10, 2011
    IuraCivium
    In the original TRON, after the MCP has appropriated CLU (not that one), Flynn tries to execute some more commands. While not shown on-screen, the final keystroke occurs after a slight pause and is much more forceful than the previous ones.
  • October 10, 2011
    Heatherly
    I like the With A Flourish idea.
  • October 11, 2011
    69BookWorM69
    Paraphs at the ends of signatures (which had the additional purpose of guarding against forgery). John Hancock's signature has one. Perhaps that could be the pic for this?
  • October 11, 2011
    pcw2727
    With the new one I'd go with a picture of Light from Deathnote writing.
  • October 15, 2011
    pcw2727
    bump
  • October 15, 2011
    randomsurfer
    Mark Russell (pianist/PBS musical satirist) used to do this at the end of all his songs.
  • October 16, 2011
    Omeganian
    Running Man has a scene where the hero signs a contract on a lawyer's back - and uses the pen to pin the document there.
  • October 16, 2011
    Stratadrake
    With A Flourish might make a nice redirect, but it's not good enough for the main title.

    BTW, Finishing Move could be the subtrope for Fighting Games.
  • October 17, 2011
    pcw2727
    I think Finishing With A Flourish makes a decent title. Its got Added Alliterative Appeal. I want to keep it limited to the more mundane of activities, I could see things like Finishing Move as related tropes and I'd definitely put a link and explain the difference.
  • November 9, 2011
    Arivne
    Anime and Manga
    • Hanaukyo Maid Tai, 2nd season La Verite episode 8. Grace is typing on a computer keyboard, trying to defeat an intruding hacker. After finishing a series of keystrokes she says "O.K., gotcha!" and dramatically stabs down to press a key. She does it again in episode 9.
  • January 6, 2012
    lebrel
    bump
  • January 18, 2012
    lebrel
    bump?
  • January 18, 2012
    AP
    • The latest King Kong movie features the main character typing "skull island" on a typewriter and is doing so in an overly dramatic fashion. Subverted in that this is for the benefit of drama and not the character's intent.
  • January 19, 2012
    Chabal2
  • January 25, 2012
    lebrel
    Bump. Is this abandoned?
  • January 26, 2012
    Arivne
    The OP pcw2727 hasn't posted since October 17th, so this is Up For Grabs.
  • January 26, 2012
    Rognik
    • Quest For Glory series: every time you sign the Adventurer Guild's log book, you sign it with a flourish.
  • January 26, 2012
    Stratadrake
    I'd prefer Finishing Flourish to Finishing With A Flourish. More succinct.
  • February 15, 2012
    lebrel
    I'm calling this Up For Grabs unless pcw2727 shows up.

    Anyone else want to comment on the title? Is Finishing Flourish better?
  • March 20, 2012
    pittsburghmuggle
    I found this while looking for a trope to put something under.

    • In the movie documentary The Aristocrats, Drew Carrey points out that he always finishes telling The Aristocrats joke with a flourish of snapping his fingers.

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