Eating, drinking, and activity stops upon seeing a newcomer, outsider or outcast enter
Local Hangout of a small town or remote area and it's quickly obvious the now-silent patrons recognize the new arrivals as not being from around here or perhaps it's The Dreaded. If either the newly arrived customer is a local and the target of scandalous gossip or just considered a social outcast, this trope may also happen. It could be a Bad-Guy Bar and the rogues there are giving the newcomers dirty looks. Probably the most archetypal version of this trope occurs in Westerns, where the standard image is of either a criminal or lawman entering the saloon through swinging doors and everyone goes silent (always including a piano player), knowing that a gunfight is about to ensue. If the newcomers are lovable cowards, the awkward silence may cause them to turn right around and leave. A badass character may instead take a seat at the counter or at the table (depending on the setting). If the bartender, waitstaff, or customers don't take a liking to new arrivals, they may tell them outright to leave or alternately say that they're not welcome here. This may be made funnier with someone who's pouring something (tea, coffee, etc) pours it too much because he/she's stunned in silence when this guy enters. And Heaven forbid they sit in a booth or table that is used by that certain regular. Sometimes accompanied by Letting the Air Out of the Band or a Record Needle Scratch. Compare The Freelance Shame Squad, which is a similar phenomenon where everyone in the room instantly pays attention to the protagonist (this time for doing something embarrassing). Also compare Chirping Crickets.
- A commercial for Planter's Peanuts has Mr. Peanut hosting a party and explaining to the audience how to put on such a bash. He goes on to say you have to be a gracious host no matter who shows up. As if on cue, a nutcracker enters and the crowd goes silent. The nutcracker apologizes for an incident the previous week and we see a bandage on the back of Mr. Peanut's head.
- Street Fighter II V has this happen to Ryu in a prison cafeteria (instead of a bar or restaurant). Silence greets him as he enters the cafeteria after recovering from a brutal torture session with the warden. Some chatter starts up about Ryu being the new guy and how he lasted through the warden's physical torture as he heads over to get some food.
- In the EarthBound Fan Fiction Gender Roles, the customers act this way when they see a new couple of females enter the restaurant Ness and Paula are in. The waitress also specifically tells them to leave, claiming that they are "both absolutely disgusting and aren't welcome here in this place".
- In Tangled, when Flynn and Rapunzel enter the Snuggly Duckling.
- In The Great Mouse Detective, the bar goes quiet when Basil mentions Ratigan.
- When Rango first enters the saloon, the patrons all quiet down, and all eyes turn to him.
- Happens during Po's dream in Kung Fu Panda. - Zero-Context Example
- Happens twice in succession on The Sponge Bob Square Pants Movie. Once when Patrick goes into the Thug Tug and asks to go to the bathroom, and again when one of the bubbles he and SpongeBob made in said bathroom wanders out into the bar.
- Abraham Van Helsing gets this in Horror of Dracula as he goes into a tavern in Klausenberg. Music stops playing upon his entry and the patrons just stare at him in silence. The tavernkeeper willingly provides him with a brandy and a meal, but goes mum when pressed on the whereabouts of Jonathan Harker.
- Willow. When the title character heads into a tavern, he's greeted by dirty stares from some shady cutthroats within. Things do go silent when he asks for milk for his infant charge, Elora Danan. He gets met with angry shouting, forcing him to flee.
- Peewees Big Adventure
- Pee-wee enters a diner, but when he says, "Large Marge sent me", everyone drops what they're doing, and turn towards him, all with shock and disbelief on their faces.
- It happens again when Pee-Wee visits the biker bar. It doesn't happen though until Pee-Wee draws attention to himself by shouting at the bikers to be quiet since he wants to use the phone.
- Done twice in Red Tails when the Tuskeegee Airmen enter the officially whites-only officers' club. The first time, Lightning goes it alone, gets told to leave, and blows his stack. The second time, after the squadron manages to escort a bomber group to and from the target with no bombers lost, the leader of the bomber group tells the bartender "they're with us" and buys them a round.
- Used in Victor/Victoria when King, dressed in a tuxedo, walks into a working-class bar for the express purpose of picking a fight.
- This happens thrice in íThree Amigos!. Early on the bar in the town goes silent when the gypsy woman and her son enter. Happens again at the village of Santo Poco, first when The German enters the Bad-Guy Bar and later when the Amigos do the same. Justified in the latter case because they're wearing showy stage outfits and hence are Mistaken for Badass. You can watch it here.
- In the 1971 film Countess Dracula, tavern patrons go silent as military officers Captain Dobi and Lieutenant Toth enter and take a table. Justified possibly due to them being soldiers.
- In An American Werewolf in London, the patrons within the Slaughtered Lamb pub go abruptly silent when Jack and David enter. They go silent a second time when the two Americans ask about the pentagram on the wall.
- In Live and Let Die, when James Bond walks into the Fillet of Soul restaurant in New York the entire crowd slowly goes completely silent. It might be because the Fillet of Soul is in Harlem and everyone in the crowd is black, while Bond is white. Or it might be because all of them work for Kananga/Mr. Big and the situation is a trap.
- In Mississippi Burning, set in a racist 1964 Southern state Close-Knit Community, the town bar goes silent when Ward decides to sit down next to one of the blacks.
- In Outlaw of Gor when Tarl enters a Kal-Da shop (basically a very low class, low rent bar) everyone stops and stares at him because he's a stranger in a town which doesn't get many strangers - because any strangers in town after sundown are taken slave by the local authorities.
- In Assassin of Gor Tarl enters a more run-of-the-mill tavern and everyone stops and stares, because he's in disguise as an Assassin. When they all realize that they're not who he's there for, they slowly go back to their former activities.
- When the other students are caught up in the lies of the Daily Prophet and believe that Harry Potter is evil, such as after he speaks Parseltongue in Chamber of Secrets, he is often annoyed by how they fall silent due to fear when he enters a room.
- Occurs a couple of times in Discworld.
As one man, the assembled company stopped talking and stared at him with that honest rural stare that suggests that for two pins they'll hit you around the head with a shovel and bury your body in a compost heap at full moon.Two hundred eyes watched the pair as they pushed their way through the crowd to the bar, a hundred mouths paused in the act of drinking, cursing or pleading, and ninety-nine brows crinkled with the effort of working out whether the newcomers fell into category A, people to be frightened of or B, people to frighten.
- In Mort, when Mort enters the Duke's Head:
- Subverted in an episode of Father Ted. Ted strides into the prizegiving at the King of the Sheep competition and boldly announces that he has evidence the competition is corrupt. The room immediately goes silent - except for one just audible "Fucking hell!"
- On Soap the Tate family, usually at dinner, always stops what they're talking about in mid-sentence when youngest son Billy (age 12) enters the room, in order to "protect" him from the adult situations they have to deal with. He's quite annoyed with this. He only finds out that his sister (and later his mother) are accused of murder by reading the newspaper.
- In the the tag of Community episode "Intro To Recycled Cinema", after Chang's career as an actor ended before it even started, he tries coming back to the study room as if nothing happened. His quiet entry interrupts the animated discussion between the members of the Save Greendale Committee, leading to a long awkward silence.
- In episode 4 of Stranger Things, Mike, Lucas and Dustin open the doors to the gym where the school is holding an assembly to honor Will. The speaker stops and everyone is looking at our heroes in an awkward moment of silence. Dustin wants to bolt but Lucas holds him back and they all walk in and join the assembly.
- Subverted in one The Far Side strip. Two musicians in a saloon see an Obviously Evil cowboy coming in, so one tells the other to start playing in a minor key (rather than going silent).
- Dungeons & Dragons, Dungeon magazine adventure "The Standing Stones of Sundown". When the PCs enter the Witch's Brew tavern, all conversation stops and the patrons turn to look at them. After a few seconds they continue their conversations, but occasionally cast anxious glances at the new arrivals. They are worried because of the strange events that have recently started to occur nearby.
- In South Park: The Stick of Truth, when the "humans" enter the "elf" bar, the bar goes on normally until they ask for The Bard, and then the place goes silent.
- In the Count Duckula episode "Igor's Busy Day", Scott and Laura, a young couple visiting Transylvania, stop by a local inn named "Ye Tooth and Jugular" after their car breaks down. The couple enter in the middle of the patrons singing a drinking song which abruptly stops upon their entry.
- Subverted, then played straight in the Looney Tunes short "Drip Along Daffy". Daffy bursts into a saloon with guns drawn, daring anyone within earshot to challenge him, but no one pays any attention to him. But then everyone stops when bad guy Nasty Canasta makes his entrance, leaving immediately as Canasta approaches Daffy.
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