It Belongs In A Museum YKTTW Discussion

It Belongs In A Museum
(permanent link) added: 2010-03-26 07:18:19 sponsor: Clevomon (last reply: 2010-03-26 07:18:19)

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Guybrush Threepwood: The Diamond belongs in a museum!
King Andre: So do post-impressionist paintings, Mr Threepwood.

Stock Phrase expressing just how old and/or valuable a given MacGuffin, Artifact of Doom, or hey, maybe someone's Grampa is. Used in a few different types of plot scenarios.

Type 1: "Don't touch that MacGuffin." Here, the phrase is usually uttered by the resident Adventurer Archaeologist, but can be given by just about any Naïve Newcomer or The Everyman who happens to stumble on something very old or valuable while exploring The Ruins of the Götterdämmerung. Indiana Jones was most likely either the Trope Maker or the Trope Codifier for this particular type. There are two common variations of this type. In the first, the line serves to establish the character who utters it as a good and trustworthy person, in contrast to the person he's saying this to, who will be (or, more likely, is) devoured by the Green-Eyed Monster and will, in a relatively short time span, Kick the Dog. It's likely that their response to this phrase will, in itself, be a Kick the Dog. The second variation is less straightforward regarding good guys and bad guys. In this scenario, someone finds something old and/or valuable, sometimes in a Personal Effects Reveal, sometimes in some other scenario, but always already in someone's posession and exclaims this. Another person then goes through an explanation as to why it does not, in fact, belong there. Both characters here are quite capable of being good, and the object will most likely not go to a museum in the end, in contrast to the first one, where the object will, but after a major argument and/or Fight Scene.

Type 2: "Really? You call that a car?" This is a Sarcasm Mode version of Type 1 that gains a completely different meaning. In this case, a person is referring disparagingly to something because of its age or it doesn't work properly. The person then says that the thing is "so old/broken/weird it belongs in a museum."

Type 3: "It's too dangerous for us!" This usually occurs in An Aesop about the Green-Eyed Monster. A group finds a treasure/MacGuffin and decides to split it. But soon, everyone's turning on each other in order to get more than their own share or in order to get the artifact all to himself. Eventually a truce is reached when the group realizes that what they found is more trouble than it's worth, and the item gets sent to a museum instead.

This trope is also a Truth in Television - under UK law, museums get first refusal of any treasure found in British soil.



[[folder:"Don't touch that MacGuffin!"]]

  • From Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade:
    Panama Hat: Small world, Dr. Jones.
    Indiana Jones: Too small for two of us.
    Panama Hat: This is the second time I've had to reclaim my property from you.
    Indiana Jones: That belongs in a museum.
    Panama Hat: So do you.

  • A Civil Campaign: Miles offers his grandmother's old saddle to Ekaterin. His grandmother being the daughter of the Emperor, Princess Vorbarra and Countess Vorkosigan. When Ekaterin exclaims this line, Miles replies that it was made to be used, and belongs under a fine lady, not glass.

Live-Action TV
  • Came up in The Dick Van Dyke Show of all places. Rob inherited an old-fashioned roll top desk from his Identical Grandfather, and searched it for a treasure which the grandfather had implied was hidden in it. The treasure turned out to be a picture of Abraham Lincoln taken by Civil War photographer Matthew Brady. At first they were going to sell it, then weren't sure, and ended up giving it on permanant loan to a museum.
  • Frequently used by Sydney Fox in Relic Hunter.
  • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, episode "British East Africa, September 1909"
Teddy Roosevelt: Beasts such as these belong in a museum, for everyone to share.

Video Games
  • An comic example occurs in Harvest Moon Animal Parade during a cutscene in which Calvin, the resident Indiana Jones Expy, angrily declares this line to Luke and Owen, who are trying to smash down a millenium-old wall in order to get to more ore.
  • Used in The Curse of Monkey Island, resulting in the above page quote.
    • Also, in The Secret of Monkey Island you can claim that the Idol of Many Hands "belongs in a museum" when you are caught trying to steal it.

Web Animation
Cheerleader: This is taking too long!
What's Her Face: I'm already bored!
So and So: I'm going home!
The Ugly One: I belong in a museum!

Western Animation
Sulu: It would have looked nice in some museum.
Spock: It never would have reached a museum, Lieutenant. There was too much power in that one setting. If not the Kzinti, the Klingons or some other species would have tried to possess it.

[[folder:"Really? You call that a car?"]] [[/folder]]

[[folder:"It's too dangerous for us!"]] Western Animation Arthur and Buster did a type 3 with an arrowhead they found at an archeological dig. [[/folder]]
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