Taking The Cool Way
Because easy isn't interesting. Or good on screen.


(permanent link) added: 2012-09-02 13:22:01 sponsor: norsicnumber2nd (last reply: 2012-10-20 09:33:42)

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There was a much simpler way to 'floor gymnastics routine handover' him that towel; running straight down the road right next to you may just have been quicker than parkour-ing; there's a cable-car over there - but call next time you're gunna climb a mountain, and I'm pretty sure you could have drunk from that sports bottle without balancing it on your mouth and doing yoga but, hey, why don't'cha do that anyway. Show off.

When that character finds the single most awkward way of completing a task. Sometimes it's that one kid you know just will because they're a terrible showboater, or the hero as it's very cinematic. Other times it's there to liven up a rather mundane scene (usually, in that case, done for laughs), or because that's just how they do it. Occasionally it's done whilst a lecture of some really boring Techno Babble on the engineer's solution is being given. In those cases, a commando roll and some awesome ninjitsu is obviously the only way to shut that guy up and get to the church on time, usually resulting in the jaw-dropped "...Or you could do it like that."

For example, in The Avengers all the Avengers, at some point, manage to do this. Black Widow, in Russia, does a back flip while tied to a chair - she could have broken free of the chair first then shot all the mobsters instead, this becoming a Visual Pun as she took them out using eight limbs. Captain America, in Manhattan, does parkour over all the taxis, not run straight. Hulk, in Stark Tower, plays with Loki like a boisterous child would a rag doll instead of chucking him off the balcony. Hawkeye shoots an arrow backwards and kills a Chitauri then holds his bow like a crossbow only to jump backwards off a building then release a grapple hook. In the same film, this is also averted when Black Widow and Hawkeye discard their fancy fight techniques for hair-pulling, clawing, and biting.

In Batman Forever, Dick Grayson does martial arts with his laundry, to show off his skills (although he gets in a fight later).

In Gurren Lagann, a lot of what the characters do, from In the Name of the Moon speeches to wrestling moves in giant robots, is unnecessary (unless it boosts Spiral Energy) but cool.

In Code Geass, Lelouch goes out of his way to over-dramatize everything he does. While some of it could be justified as propaganda and morale work, there's a lot of dramatic flair he does in public or when dealing with people who have no chance to remember it, usually because they're about to die.

In Supernatural, the Impala can definitely reach speeds used on major highways, but Sam and Dean are never seen going from point A to point B using them. They are always shown driving somewhere - even when they are in a hurry - using scenic back roads. There may be some other reason for this such as they are trying to remain under the radar, but more likely it's just for reasons of Rule of Cool and Scenery Porn, because even though driving down a car filled highway would likely be much faster, it just isn't as cool or scenic.

In Huckleberry Finn Tom and Huck could have gotten Jim out of jail any time, but Tom insisted they use a ridiculously contrived scheme to do so, pretty much because it'd be cooler.

In Hot Fuzz, Sergeant Nicholas Angel (name taken from one of the crew. Honestly.) has an opening montage showing just how great a PC he is. Then, promoted to Sergeant, he goes out into the country (which is thoroughly boring... or so it seems) and eventually saves the day by being even more awesome (becoming just plain awesome). This involves cool shades, a horse, and a load of music. Plus, dodging artichoke and curry in Skinner's supermarket.

Most of The Hangover and its sequel is this: instead of going on their wild stag-do adventures, they could have used logic to work out that their missing friends were still in the hotel.

In an episode of Bonkers the titular character does this.

In Twilight, Emmett bounds, flips and climbs up a tree then spin jumps off the top in order to catch a baseball, even though it is shown later that he can jump much higher than that off the ground.

In Shrek, Prince Charming described his laborious journey to Princess Fiona's tower - battling the elements for weeks on end. The montage looked cool. Shrek, however, showed that all you needed to do was walk through a field of sunflowers and over a hill in less than half a day.

In Ramona and Beezus, Howie uses a grape-flinger he made to, well, fling grapes into his mouth. This gets its own scene, though it is shared with Ramona's 'proper way to crack a hard-boiled egg' - hitting your head with it. In a previous scene her dad made it work (a whole scene devoted to that sequence), but she ends up with raw egg in her hair... on picture day, too.

In Grindhouse Stuntman Mike seduced women then would take them in his stunt car and do a load of stunts before destroying it in some way, killing the girl but surviving (as the drivers' seat is 'death proof'), but later made women give him lap dances before shooting them.

In Fist of the North Star, Kenshiro could easily kill the villains by snapping their necks, or stopping their hearts, or collapsing their neural system. He could crush their trachea or snap their limbs. He could make them die of simple blunt trauma. Instead, almost every time, he makes them explode in very painful and spectacular ways. He could also kill them instantly, but instead prefers to give them a delayed effect just to invoke You Are Already Dead.

The levels of this in Robot (Endhiran) are so high they've been taken up to eleven-hundred. I mean, there's a man made out of android men that unnecessarily looks a little like Iron Man and casually leans against a building before running down a highway, exploding every vehicle in it's way then vertically jumping while doing a 720 spin way over a few hundred feet in the air and karate-chopping down a helicopter, only to go into a hero crouch then pounce up and leap right over the wreck. This, of course, calls for a slow-motion action shot from below and the continuation of it's jog being shot upside-down.

In One Piece, Vice-Admiral Garp bashes through a wall to get to Luffy. When pointed out that There Was A Door, Garp merely replies that going through the wall was cooler. His men make him help repair the hole he made

Unlike Awesome, but Impractical (looks cool, is actually useless), this is (simply) a more elaborate and complicated means to the same end that doing something much less cool would have brought you too for (usually) the sheer awesome-ness or hilarity.

Related to Laborious Laziness and will often follow the Rule of Cool.

Sister Trope to Mundane Made Awesome.

Depending on how it is played, can result in There Is No Kill Like Overkill and will often be the behavior of a Combat Aestheticist - however, it can be seen when not in a battle scene.
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