Created By: System32June 12, 2010 Last Edited By: System32June 12, 2010
Troped

Everything Makes a Mushroom

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Needs A Better Description Needs More Examples

Sometimes things explode. Sometimes they are radioactive. Sometimes they are chemical explosives.

This is for when that isn't the case. The mushroom cloud is Played For Laughs, and to show how powerful the explosive is.

Examples:
  • Ratchet And Clank 2 Plays with this. One of the weapons makes a mushroom cloud while not being nuclear at all.
  • Little Big Planet's explosives create mushroom clouds in the background if you detonate many of them.
  • Over The Hedge has a scene where the cast open a bag of well shaken cheesy puffs. Cue mushroom cloud visible from the moon.
  • Flint Lockwood gets a mushroom cloud in Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs early on in the movie.
  • The Cain in Mass Effect 2 is specifically explained to NOT be nuclear in nature - it's simply a large, explosive-filled shell launched at relativistic velocities towards a target. But since the resulting impact creates a characteristic mushroom-cloud, it's referred to as the 'Nuke Gun', and has radioactivity-symbols plastered all over it.
  • A mushroom cloud is shown on The Simpsons, but it's only a few inches tall.
  • In Chicken Run, an explosion of gravy looks an awful lot like a mushroom cloud.
  • In the second book of Percy Jackson And The Olympians Tyson and Percy, playing with chemicals, make a "miniature mushroom cloud" near the trash can.
Community Feedback Replies: 19
  • May 22, 2010
    Arivne
    This is currently section 5 of You Fail Nuclear Physics Forever.
  • May 22, 2010
    System32
    Then I should retool the trope then.
  • May 22, 2010
    Stratadrake
    Still needs a better title... Mushrooms Of Power sounds like it's about ... well, mushrooms.
  • May 22, 2010
    Bisected8
    Strictly speaking any explosion can cause a mushroom cloud. But it has to be a big one. They're a type of "pyrocumulous" (literally just "fire cloud", any cloud formed...by a fire). The distinctive shape is caused by the gas from the explosion travelling up in a solid column and expanding like a more conventional cloud as it cools at the top (sort of like a water fountain but with dust and hot gas).
  • May 22, 2010
    FrodoGoofballCoTV
    Troper Tales: I saw a mushroom cloud in Real Life one day. It turned out the pilot and copilot of a small plane had gotten into a squabble and the plane flew into a warehouse filled with flammable paint.... Not a good day, but better than what many had feared.

    I also recall a cartoon where a very nasty chemical is introduced into a solution with an eyedropper and produced a mushroom cloud only a few cm (inches) tall.
  • May 22, 2010
    BlackDragon
    The Cain in Mass Effect 2 is specifically explained to NOT be nuclear in nature - it's simply a large, explosive-filled shell launched at relativistic velocities towards a target. But since the resulting impact creates a characteristic mushroom-cloud, it's referred to as the 'Nuke Gun', and has radioactivity-symbols plastered all over it.
  • May 23, 2010
    DragonQuestZ
    "Still needs a better title... Mushrooms Of Power sounds like it's about ... well, mushrooms."

    Or a Mushroom Power Up.

    Every Explosion Is A Mushroom Cloud?
  • May 23, 2010
    System32
  • May 23, 2010
    ParadiscaCorbasi

  • May 23, 2010
    Unknown Troper
    I don't recall any mushroom cloud explosions on Looney Tunes.
  • May 25, 2010
    System32
    Hmm, I remember seeing mushroom clouds several times on the roadrunner.
  • May 25, 2010
    Chabal2
    There's a mushroom cloud that shows up in an episode of The Simpsons, but the camera pans out to show it's barely a few inches tall.
  • May 26, 2010
    System32
    Is it good enough to launch yet?
  • May 26, 2010
    balrog1911
    How are we forgetting Fallout 3? Everything that isn't a grenade or rocket launcher explodes into mushroom cloud. Literally. Including 200-year old car wrecks. It is, of course, very cool.
  • May 26, 2010
    System32
    The cars are powered by nuclear fission reactors. This is for when Mushroom clouds are used to highlight how powerful an explosion is.
  • May 26, 2010
    Unknown Troper
    Presumably the cars, nuclear or not, are too small a detonation to produce a mushroom cloud in reality, so it may still count.

    Worth noting that this relates to the You Nuke Em sub-trope about mini-nukes; these generally shouldn't be able to produce mushroom clouds, but do for reasons of showing how powerful they are, and to 'prove' they're nuclear in nature.
  • May 27, 2010
    LarryD
    A lot of old cartoons have the "last component in drink creates micro-mushroom cloud when added". A Dead Horse Trope now, because the whole point is to convey that the drink is dangerously strong. Also used in old Popeye cartoons as one of the bicep-power-up symbolisms.

    Obviously not older than the Atomic Bomb.
  • May 27, 2010
    Evalana
    • In Chicken Run, an explosion of gravy looks an awful lot like a mushroom cloud.
  • May 27, 2010
    asterselene
    In the second book of Percy Jackson And The Olympians Tyson and Percy, playing with chemicals, make a "miniature mushroom cloud" near the trash can.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable