->''"Looks like an ordinary briefcase, but this contains ''exactly'' the items you'll almost certainly need on your mission."''
-->-- '''Ü''', ''Webcomic/IrregularWebcomic'', "Espionage"

A ChekhovsGun is an item introduced before its use, and is usually quite inconspicuous. In a movie, if you see a brief shot of a single object, such as a fork on a table, you can be guaranteed that that particular item will be used later in order to resolve a problem or as a weapon. The item's function may or may not be fully apparent at first and discovering its use may be part of the narrative device.

Chekhov's Armoury is when the writer uses several (and in some cases, uses too many) Chekhov's Guns, not all of which are painfully obvious. (Skilled writers may give the painfully obvious ones trivial uses, and use them chiefly to [[RedHerring disguise]] the minor ones.)

TheLawOfConservationOfDetail taken to its LogicalExtreme.

Carefully written and/or MythArc-laden shows tend to have a Chekhov's Armoury. It also provides good potting soil for EpilepticTrees. Opposite of CowTools, where there are a large number of seemingly significant tchotchkes which turn out to be just window dressing.


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'':
** A ''lot'' of stuff, especially regarding [[spoiler:Asuna. Notably, all of the times the spells Negi cast on her fail is not due to him being an IneptMage, but rather due to her Magic Cancel ability. Her poor grades are implied to be caused by a large scale LaserGuidedAmnesia spell.]] Plus a bunch of other stuff.
** ''Negima!'''s Armoury was especially effective because much of the foreshadowing was disguised as comedy, once again especially with regards to [[spoiler:Asuna. Her superhuman speed, strength, and agility were mostly played for slapstick humor, her Magic Cancel was mostly played for fanservice (so that Negi's spells would blast her clothes off but leave her unharmed), and so forth.]]
** Also, while not necessarily an example of Chekhov's Armoury per se, it's also interesting to pay attention to how Akamatsu handled the fighters and supernatural characters in the earlier chapters. For example, the characters who were left out of the Dodgeball game[[note]]All of them, excepting the cheerleaders, are extreme badasses who could have won the match singlehanded[[/note]]. The most extreme of these foreshadows was the class roster in the first chapter.
* Manga/ItsNotMyFaultImNotPopular Uses this regularly. Only enough characters to count on one hand haven't become recurring characters, and even then they still reappear as background characters
* ''Manga/OnePiece'' has a ton.
** The earliest is Luffy's hat; in the anime, its importance isn't explained until after Zoro joins the crew, as opposed to chapter one in the manga. But after the TimeSkip about six hundred chapters later, it's revealed that Shanks treasured it so much because [[spoiler:he got it from his former captain, Pirate King Gold Roger]].
** Then there's Coby, who accompanies Luffy for the first couple of episodes and chapters before he joins the Marines. He becomes a chore boy, but eventually becomes an apprentice to Vice-Admiral Garp, who was famous for having cornered Gold Roger many times. [[spoiler:It turns out that Garp is Luffy's grandfather.]]
** Nami's first canon appearance has her mentioning to Luffy that she needs 100,000,000 berries (the currency used in that world, not the fruit), and that she hates pirates because a pirate killed someone dear to her. It's revealed at the end of the first saga that that same pirate, Arlong, took over her village and enslaved her, striking a bargain to let them all go if she paid him 100,000,000 berries. And he valued money so much that he [[IGaveMyWord never goes back on any promises that involve them]]. Unfortunately, that doesn't extend to using LoopholeAbuse...that is, unfortunately for him, when Nami, reduced to tears, begged Luffy for help. [[RoaringRampageOfRevenge Arlong learned his lesson]]. Guess what Luffy's bounty is worth? [[spoiler:300,000,000 berries. Three times the amount she needed.]]
** And then we have Arlong's [[TheDragon Dragon]], who reappears a few hundred chapters/episodes later, [[spoiler:and becomes the Straw Hats' friend and ally]].
** Laboon and Crocus, an oversized whale and an extremely skilled doctor at the entrance to the Grand Line. Laboon befriended a group of pirates that promised to return to him after they navigated the Grand Line, but they never show. Crocus left as a ship's doctor to find out what happened to them, and informs Laboon that they ran away. Laboon didn't want to believe him. It eventually turns out that it wasn't true; they were, in fact, killed. [[spoiler:But one of the crew members, the acting captain Brook who happened to be Laboon's favorite, ate the Yomi Yomi no Mi/Revive-Revive Fruit, which enabled him to return to life. He is currently traveling with the Straw Hat Pirates as their musician, in order to fulfill his crew's promise.]] Oh, and Crocus? He was [[spoiler:Gold Roger's doctor]].
** Little Garden. Two giants have been fighting for a hundred years, their every battle ending in a draw. The fact that the Straw Hats manage to befriend them is no surprise. The surprise comes a couple of hundred chapters later (notice a pattern here?). [[spoiler:Oimo and Kashi, giants and gatekeepers for one of the World Government's bases, Enies Lobby, became so because the World Government told them that they had their bosses in prison, and promised that if they could guard the gate for a century, they would allow them to go free. When the Straw Hats manage to break the gates, and Oimo tearfully tells Usopp his story, the latter informs him of the truth, resulting in a pair of powerful [[HeelFaceTurn Heel Face Turns]]]].
* ''Manga/PokemonSpecial'', where everything is a ChekhovsGun and no character has only one appearance.
* ''Anime/{{Hyouka}}'' is nearly defined by this trope. With very few exceptions, every aside and piece of background chatter in an episode comes back, at some point or another, as a piece of whatever puzzle the club is trying to figure out.
* ''Manga/BlackButler'' has one, but special mention goes to the murder mystery arc. True to the genre it parodies, it gets an entire ChekhovsArmoury of it's own.
* In ''Manga/FairyTail'', you can generally assume any attention-getting detail that's suddenly unmentioned will be ''critically'' important in some point in the future.
* In ''Anime/YugiohArcV'' it's better if you just assume that any given conversation, object or even joke will become important later on, [[spoiler: Taken {{Up to Eleven}} and to an almost meta level after episodes 126-127 where it's revealed that literally all the dimensions they have visited where once one, and as such said world is basically a mash up of all the details, structure, summon methods and technology shown on each one of them]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''ComicBook/OneHundredBullets'' has its fair share. To say the very least.
* In ''ComicBook/MyLittlePonyMicroSeries'' Issue #3 pretty much everything behind the wellness center and what Rarity uses to save it is shown as background images (the "Goops for Stuff" stand, the waving Filthy Rich billboard) or seemingly dropped in in dialog.
* [[JustifiedTrope Justified]] in Creator/PhilFoglio's ''ComicBook/StanleyAndHisMonster'' miniseries: When Stanley has to go to he-- a bad place to rescue the Monster, Ambrose Bierce has him pick "Everything he thinks they will need", simultaneously casting a spell that creates a causality loop in which whatever Stanley picks will be exactly what's required.

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* ''FanFic/{{Fractured}}'', a ''MassEffect''[=/=]''Franchise/StarWars''[[spoiler:[=/=]VideoGame/{{Borderlands}}'']] [[MassiveMultiplayerCrossover crossover]] and its [[FanFic/SovereignGFCOrigins sequel]] are loaded to the gills with this trope. That character/planet/technology/side-comment you barely remember? Yeah, its relevance is being revealed now, fifteen chapters later. May cross into internal ContinuityPorn.
* FanFic/LightningOnlyStrikesOnce features numerous cases of throwaway events or items that later become significant. In one case, Lexa collects unused tranq darts that the Mountain Men fire at their targets and uses them to assassinate Charles Pike. In another, Clarke purposely infects herself with the hemorrhagic fever virus in order to infect the Mountain Men and make them think they're dying of radiation exposure.

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* The FinalBattle in ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda'' is full of references to earlier events. Po is hard to acupuncture because of his fur/fat? [[spoiler: He's also immune to nerve attacks.]] Playing a ShellGame with chopsticks? [[spoiler: Repeated with stilts and pans to hide the MacGuffin.]] Po becomes more acrobatic when he's looking for food? [[spoiler: Also works if he just imagines he's doing that.]]
* ''WesternAnimation/LeroyAndStitch'': Lilo's going away presents: a tiki necklace for Stitch, which helps to identify Leroy as a Stitch impostor, because Stitch promised to never take it off; Jumba's "Aloha Oe" record, which he plays while creating and programming the Leroy experiment for Dr. Hämsterviel, turns out to be a hidden shut-down mechanism that deactivates Leroy and his clones; and Pleakley's rock paperweight, which disrupts a black hole and turns it into a warp back to Earth once Stitch chews it down to a proper weight.

[[folder:Films -- Live Action]]
* In ''Film/ThePunisher2004'', Frank Castle puts together a very impressive armory including several hidden weapons for emergencies, and a tricked out car. Every single weapon gets used, even a [[ButterflyKnife butterfly knife]] he confiscates from some punk who was harassing his neighbor. Every weapon is shown beforehand either in a montage or as part of a scene.
* Everything from the now-infamous icing problem, the arc reactor's "Something Big For 15 Minutes Guarantee," right down to the flares plays a part in ''Film/IronMan.''
* In ''Film/IronMan3'', [[ComicBook/IronMan Tony Stark]]'s enormous armory of suits is briefly seen (while shadowed) in one scene. In the FinalBattle, he summons it to help him fight the Extremis soldiers.
* ''Film/DieHard'' is packed to the gills with material from the Armoury. The lighter that John finds, the question "Who gives a fuck about glass?", the explosives, the Twinkies... if it shows up on screen, it gets used again. And, in some cases, again and again.
* ''Film/InBruges'' (it's in Belgium), [[spoiler: ''everything'', from the type of bullets bought by Harry, to the movie Jimmy is starring in, etc.,]] comes into play in the finale.
* ''Film/JamesBond'':
** Bond always seems to use every gadget in his arsenal precisely once... because they get blown up immediately. But it is so rare for any gadget he gets with an explanation not to be used, that he should have bribed Q to only explain him about gadgets that "will allow you to safely take out unsuspecting enemies from a great distance" instead of those that are "short ranged, one shot weapons which will not be noticed by the enemy, and you can use as a last resort when captured, bound and being tortured".
** Rumor has it this results from the writers going back and adding a gadget whenever [[DeusExMachina they write themselves into a corner.]]
** ''Film/DieAnotherDay'' had a gadget that was, in fact, used twice. [[spoiler:Bond uses the ultrasonic ring to get out of a situation in an elevated greenhouse, and again to get Jinx into his car quickly.]]
** Subverted by the BMW in ''Film/GoldenEye'' - though Q goes into detail about the car's "usual refinements," none of its gadgets are ever used, and the car itself makes only a cameo appearance. ProductPlacement at its finest.
* Surprisingly, ''Film/PaulBlartMallCop''. Absolutely everything from the comedy half of the movie makes an appearance when Paul is fighting back against the robbers. [[spoiler: Even the hot sauce.]]
* ''Film/HotFuzz'' may have more so than ''Film/DieHard'', including two actual armouries. And a SeaMine.
* ''Film/{{Paycheck}}'', both the original story, and the John Woo film. To be fair, it's not a side effect, this trope is the basis for the whole film.
* [[spoiler:Almost every single wish made]] in ''Shorts'' (and Helvetica's science project) is used in the final "short" in the fight against [[spoiler:GiantMecha Mr. Black, including the Bipedal Crocodile Army, the Super-Smart Baby, the germs, the aliens, the dung beetle...]]
* In the live-action Macaulay Culkin version of ''Film/RichieRich'', every single invention introduced by lead staff scientist Professor Keenbean comes back to serve the plot in some way.
* In ''Film/EscapeFromLA,'' Snake is given a number of items, including an ordinary pack of matches. He uses everything given, [[spoiler: including the matches, to light his cigarette in the total darkness once all of the world's electricity has been eliminated.]]
* In ''Film/PeeWeesBigAdventure,'' Pee Wee's trip to the magic store serves as one of these. Everything he buys ends up getting used except for the boomerang bowtie, and that's only because the scene was deleted.
* James Cameron's ''Film/{{Avatar}}'': almost every creature seen throughout the film fights in the final fight. The Toruk, the viperwolves, the thanator, etc., everything is foreshadowed, in addition to Eytukan's bow and [[ChekhovsSkill falling from a great height]].
* ''Film/{{Untraceable}}'' does this with quite a few things. Amongst them are [[spoiler: blinking in Morse Code, a rototiller, and a car with [=OnStar=]]]. All of those moments almost feel like throwaway scenes, but then they all come into play in the latter half of the movie.
* In the beginning of ''Film/UsedCars'' a Mexican guy who supplies them with cars says he has a ton of them just sitting around (there has to be at least 250 in a picture he shows them). Later in the movie a driver's ed teacher, who they sold crappy cars to, is angry because now his 250 students can't learn to drive. At the end of the movie the lot is being sued for false advertisement (due to the bad guy messing with an ad to say they have a mile of cars then paying off "experts" to say it wasn't tampered with). A mile of cars is said to be about 250 cars and if they don't have that many at the lot when the judge comes by to see they lose. Remember how the Mexican had at least 250 cars and how the teacher had 250 students?
* ''Film/MyGirl'' has a whole bunch, including [[spoiler: the child-sized coffin, Vada's mood ring, Thomas J's allergies, and the fact that Vada lives in a funeral home.]]
* The weapons the brothers end up buying in ''Film/TheBoondockSaints'' all get used right down to the "stupid f--king rope" and "rambo" knife. A LITERAL Chekhov's Armory.
* An extremely literal example in ''Film/TransformersDarkOfTheMoon''. Optimus Prime has taken to lugging around a trailer to match his trailer-truck vehicle form. The trailer transforms into a small armory of equipment he might need, such as jets, sword and shield, and more guns. Every one of these becomes important later on.
* In ''Film/JohnnyEnglishReborn'', anything that comes up in the first 10 minutes of the film is useful later on. e.g Taking a kick to the jewels without feeling pain, the mind controlling the body, him having the experience that age brings as opposed to the energy of youth, etc.
* ''Film/{{Clue}}''. Even seeming throwaway gags are secretly plot-relevant.
* Andy's prison cell in ''Film/TheShawshankRedemption'' is this as it contains the items that are relevant to [[spoiler: his escape]]. The film version adds a few that aren't in the book.
* ''Film/DodgeballATrueUnderdogStory'' contains a ChekhovsGun in every other line of dialogue, usually disguised as punchlines or throwaway gags.
* ''Film/RedEye'' has many of these dropped into the plot within the first ten or fifteen minutes that become significant when [[spoiler: Cillian Murphy's character begins to blackmail Rachel McAdams's character.]]
* ''Film/{{Constantine}}''. Almost every object that Constantine receives from Beeman turns out to be useful later. The dragonbreath weapon is used by John against [[spoiler:Balthazar]] twice, the two holy water ampoules are used to (a) return Constantine from Hell and (b) eat away [[spoiler:Balthazar]]'s face so John can beat him up with the gold knuckles, and the Amityville screech beetle is used to disrupt the demon that attacks Constantine on the street. Even the bottle of cough syrup is shown being drunk by Constantine later. The only thing that isn't used are the bullet shavings from the assassination attempt on the Pope.
* The first ''Film/BackToTheFuture'' is absolutely riddled with these, with [[ConservationOfDetail almost everything significant]] in 1985 coming back in 1955; the last day Doc puts in the time circuits,[[note]]It is the day he came up with the flux capacitor, which Marty uses to win Past!Doc over.[[/note]] Marty's band wanting to play at the dance,[[note]]His guitar playing comes into effect when he plays at the 1955 dance.[[/note]] Jennifer's phone number,[[note]]Written on the otherwise unwanted note about the exact time the clocktower was struck[[/note]] and Lorraine's love story[[note]]Explains how Marty nearly erases himself, and tells him how to make them fall in love again.[[/note]] are just a few examples of very important (but seemingly minor) details.
* Odin's trophy room in ''Film/{{Thor}}'' contains the Asgardian Destroyer that [[spoiler:Loki sends after Thor while he is exiled on Earth]]. However, keen-eyed fans have also noticed other significant items in the trophy room that hint at the future of the ''Franchise/MarvelCinematicUniverse''. This includes:
** The Infinity Gauntlet, which has been associated with the villain Thanos. [[spoiler:Thanos was later confirmed as the ''GreaterScopeVillain'' to Loki in the credits of ''Film/TheAvengers2012'']].
** The Orb of Agamotto, an artifact that belonged to Dr. Strange in the comics. [[spoiler:Marvel Studios has announced that a Dr. Strange film is currently in development]].
* In ''Film/KingsmanTheSecretService'', all of the Kingsman gadgets shown come in useful at various times including the bulletproof umbrella, the 50,000 volt signet ring, the cigarette lighter hand grenade, the poison pen, the shoe blade and the amnesia dart.
* The 2009 ''Film/SherlockHolmes''- everything in the chemistry lab turns out to be important in some way. Details would be spoilerific. In fact, both films have a vast arsenal of guns, from the glaringly obvious to the subtle and seemingly one-shot ones. One of the most prominent examples in [[Film/SherlockHolmesAGameOfShadows the second movie]] is Mycroft's [[spoiler:[[ArtificialGill oxygen breather]]]] that Holmes handles before the climax.
* Hitchcock's classic ''Film/DialMForMurder''. Nearly ''everything'' either mentioned or shown to the audience in the first half of the movie becomes vital to the protagonists figuring out Tony Wendiss's plot to have his [[ThePerfectCrime wife killed by someone he was blackmailing.]]
* In ''Film/MothersDay'', the weapons used are all introduced long before they are actually used.

* ''Literature/APrayerForOwenMeany'': Owen's height, voice, and strange complexion are all necessary attributes for him to have in order [[spoiler: to save the Vietnamese children. ]]
* Creator/DouglasAdams:
** ''Literature/DirkGentlysHolisticDetectiveAgency''. A poem, a conjuring trick, and a ''stuck couch'' in the first few chapters are all linked by the end.
** Also occurs in the weirdest way (it's Douglas Adams after all) in the sequel, ''Literature/TheLongDarkTeaTimeOfTheSoul''. Needless to say, Norse Gods and a somewhat popular '''song''' are involved in the apparent suicide by beheading of some dude. Also, Dirk's non-working fridge? That has something to do with it as well.
** The ''Dirk Gently'' books embody this trope really because they are all about the interconnectedness of everything. Chekov's Armoury isn't just a device Adams used, it's what he based the whole book on.
* ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'', and about half of them were all introduced at the same event, Bianca's party in ''Grave Peril''. [[MindScrew The author also has a NONEXISTENT Chekov's Armoury]] by writing as normal, then revealing there was something vitally important that SHOULD have happened, most notably in ''Literature/SmallFavor''. To elaborate, [[spoiler: Harry, the main character, usually has a penchant for [[KillItWithFire including fire based magic]] in his arsenal. However, throughout much of ''Small Favor'' this is not the case. It isn't remarked upon in the narrative, until one of the other characters points it out and Harry realizes that [[TheFairFolk Mab]] had tampered with his mind to keep him from doing so.]]
* The ''Literature/HarryPotter'' series. Everything is a ChekhovsGun. ''Everything''. If you hear about a cabinet, a love potion, a locket, a snitch--chances it will turn up, often books later, as a plot point. The longest-spanning one being the [[spoiler: Snitch that Harry caught in his first ever Quidditch game]]. It appeared about halfway through the first book, was never even MENTIONED again until near the beginning of the last book. While it was around, it's true purpose wasn't fulfilled until ''three'' chapters before the end of the entire book: [[spoiler: It held the Resurrection Stone.]]
* The ''Literature/CommonwealthSaga'' uses this trope. Anything introduced at all will have some factor later on. ''Anything''. If not in that saga, then in ''The Void Trilogy'' (set a few thousand years after).
* Creator/BrandonSanderson:
** ''Literature/{{Mistborn}}''. Sweet CrystalDragonJesus. By the end of the third book, so many seemingly insignificant conversations, objects, and so on wind up being absurdly important. The biggest is probably [[spoiler:Vin's earring,]] but there are others.
** Both ''Literature/{{Elantris}}'' and ''Literature/{{Warbreaker}},'' have fully stocked armories of their own. ''Literature/TheWayOfKings is the first book of a [[Literature/TheStormlightArchive ten book series]] and has already had a number of Chekhov's Guns that were fired, and many other things that are probably loaded Chekhov's Guns that will fire in future books.
* {{Justified|Trope}} in ''Literature/MyFathersDragon'', which has a kid pack up a backpack full of ordinary kid stuff, like whistles and sticks of gum, and set out on a mission to rescue a dragon. You guessed it: everything he has in his backpack gets used at one point or another. He was advised to bring all that by a stray cat, who told him about the dragon to begin with, having travelled to its island where it was held.
* The numerous things the five defecting stormtroopers in ''Literature/{{Allegiance}}'' find in the ship they stole.
* Creator/MatthewReilly's books. If it gets mentioned, it will be important later on. No exceptions. This includes things like weapons, tools, notes, furniture, dead bodies, building layout, machinery, debris, idle conversation... His books aren't compared to Film/DieHard for nothing.
* A usual for the ''Literature/AlexRider'' series, except subverted in ''Snakehead'' when [[spoiler:the jungle survival belt gets taken away by the book's villain without it being used.]]
* ''Literature/{{Holes}}'' is a masterpiece of Chekhovian gunmanship.
* ''Literature/TheKingkillerChronicle'', to the extent that you really have to read it three times to catch all the little details that end up being important. At the point that the narrator glosses over a ''shipwreck'' as irrelevant to his story, you realize how important all those little children's rhymes are.
* Lois Mc Master Bujold is amazing at this. In the ''Literature/VorkosiganSaga'', If Miles makes a joke about something, you can be sure that it'll have a deadly serious use later in the book. In the most epic example, in the eighteenth story Lois reaches all the way back to book 5, and a simple couch, to [[spoiler:shame Kareen's parents, who were being very intimate on that very piece of furniture, into letting their daughter pursue a less frantic adulthood]].
* Creator/TerryPratchett is good at sneaking plot relevant details into apparent throw-away gags, where we won't notice them until it's too late. ''Discworld/LordsAndLadies'' is especially full of this: [[spoiler:almost every goofy detail of the kingdom described in the first half of the book is weaponized against the elves in the second half]].
* In ''Literature/TheDivineCities'', several items from the list of impounded miraculous items stashed away in the Unmentionable Warehouse are mentioned in passing, but become vitally important to the story later. The villains are using [[spoiler: a magical door]] to access the vault that contains more of said items, and they use [[spoiler:threads from a flying carpet to create a fleet of nigh untouchable airships]].

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'':
** Season 5. If it shows up, even in what you ''think'' is a breather episode, it matters in the big finale against Glorificus. In particular, the [[InnocuouslyImportantEpisode supposed breather episodes]] introduced the Buffybot and the troll hammer, both of which were crucial in the season finale.
** The point where Spike calls Xander a 'glorified bricklayer'. Also relevant for the big fight against Glory. Or the message the First Slayer gives Buffy back at the end of season 4.
* ''Series/{{Jericho}}'', in a manner of speaking, has a Chekhov's Armoury: [[spoiler: In episode two, Robert Hawkins is seen mysteriously unpacking weaponry into a location of storage. It isn't until 18 episodes later when this cache of weapons is used to ''fight a frickin' war.'' May also be [[strike:SomedayThisWillComeInHandy]]..]]
* ''Series/{{Lost}}''. The hard part is figuring out which ones are Chekhov's Guns, which are {{Red Herring}}s, and which are something else entirely.
* ''Series/MacGyver''. Just take a look around the room, remember what he has in his pockets, oh, and that tennis racket you were holding for your son. Yeah, now let's go disarm a nuclear warhead.
* ''Series/{{Spooks}}'': In the episode "Love and Death", Danny and Zoe are send to intercept a scientist, with a briefcase full of documents [[spoiler:and a false bottom containing the kit to asassinate him if that doesn't work.]]
* Averted in the "apartment scenes" at the beginning of most ''[[Series/MissionImpossible Mission: Impossible]]'' episodes. Every unusual item and skill needed for the plan is showcased, mostly so they'll be familiar to the viewer when they're used later.
* Absolutely everything in ''Series/StargateSG1'':
** People, events, pictures of people, the whole thing. [[spoiler:Jolinar knew something. There's two Stargates on Earth. They can overload their Stargate to shunt the connection to another one. Teal'c carries a big staff weapon normally on offworld missions. Apophis died on camera. The Asgard are floating about the place. The Reetu are invisible, and the Tok'ra have invisible Reetu detection guns, which they gave to the SGC. One shot from a Zatgun stuns, two kills. That's not including the solid Stargate fact that every single piece of Earth mythology regardless of age or culture will definitely turn out to be alien in origin, with most gods being Goa'uld.]]
** ''Series/StargateAtlantis'':
*** Remember that one-off story in the early seasons about a drug that had a 50% mortality rate but made the survivors immune and poisonous to the Wraith? It was deemed unethical and never mentioned again? [[spoiler:It forms the crux of the plot in seaons 4 and 5, after the drug is found and weaponized against the Wraith by Micheal and alters the entire balance of power in the galaxy.]]
*** And what about the Wraith enzyme's addictive properties? Dr. Beckett's occasionally mentioned anti-Wraith retrovirus? That Ancient personal shield that makes one invulnerable?
*** It even has some cross-series examples: the Anti-Replicator Guns and Asgard Plasma Beams both feature heavily in ''Atlantis'' after being introduced in ''SG-1''.
** ''Series/StargateUniverse'':
*** Eli documenting ''everything'' with the kinos: [[spoiler:used to make an ApocalypticLog in "Time"]].
*** Scott suffers memory bleed-through from Telford, revealing that Telford is having dinner with Young's wife, resulting in pointless drama: [[spoiler:Rush also suffers from the memory bleed-through, revealing that Telford is working for the Lucian Alliance, resulting in ''Destiny'' getting warning of the Lucian Alliance attack at the end of Season One]].
*** The crew vanishing through an unstable wormhole: [[spoiler:went back in time, founded a civilization we encounter in "Common Descent"]]
*** The stasis pods Eli and Brody are fooling around with: [[spoiler:used to save the crew when they decide to leave the galaxy ahead of schedule]].
*** One of the longest lasting Boomerangs: way back in the early seasons ''SG-1'', it was shown that a near-death experience could free a person from brainwashing. In ''Universe'', [[spoiler:When Col. Telford is brainwashed by the Lucian Alliance, and they induce a near-death experience to break him out of it.]]
* In part one of the ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' season 5 finale/season 6 premier Time's Arrow, Data and Captain Picard are looking over all the items unearthed in the archaeological dig near San Francisco. In part 2 we learn they're all left behind by [[Creator/MarkTwain Samuel Clemens]] and other characters. Notable are the revolver, which Clemens threatens the crew with, the pocket watch, which Clemens makes a specific point of leaving behind in the end, and Data's head.
* ''Series/OnceUponATime'' has an amazing arsenal; everything from the Dark One's dagger and a crypt full of still-beating hearts to the DrinkOrder of Clan Charming gets used in a plot-relevant fashion. Then again, we ''are'' dealing with writers from ''Series/{{Buffy the Vampire Slayer}}'' and ''Series/{{Lost}}''. Most Chekhov's Guns can be found in Mr. Gold/Rumpelstiltskin's shop, as he [[CrazyPrepared he collects]] items that he knows could be extremely useful someday.

* ''Roleplay/DestroyTheGodmodder'': In a large way. Just about anything that people make passing reference to is intended to be used as one by some person or another, although not all of them end up doing such, it happens often enough.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Old-school AdventureGames run on this trope, giving the player a plethora of often-seemingly useless items, [[RedHerring at least most of which]] they'll eventually have a use for later on.
* ''VideoGame/PlanescapeTorment'' may be the archetypal video game example. If you are prompted to pick up an item, either in dialogue or in the narration, keep that item. It will almost certainly become necessary to completing a quest days down the line.
** The most notable gun in the armory is [[spoiler: the Bronze Sphere you obtain for Pharod in the first story quest of the game]]. You are not prompted to get it back later, but if you do, it will only eat up an inventory space until the very last scene before the final boss. At that point, it becomes priceless, [[spoiler: since it's a sensory stone containing memories of your first incarnation, granting you a boatload of experience and the ability to invoke the Mark of Torment]].
** Another big one is the Blade of the Immortal, a relatively weak weapon that is forged [[spoiler: from a drop of the Nameless One's own blood by Coaxmetal.]] It's entirely possible to miss getting it, and it's not necessary to complete the game, but if you do get it, [[spoiler: you can defeat the Transcendent One by threatening suicide, since it's the only weapon in existence capable of permanently killing the Nameless One.]]
** The Nameless One's previous incarnations have a habit of leaving behind tidbits that help him along on his quest, whether deliberately or not. In particular, without the efforts of [[spoiler: the Practical Incarnation and the Paranoid Incarnation,]] it's unlikely that the Nameless One would be able to achieve his goal at all.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII'' has the Information menu, which features lots of interesting little background tidbits about the setting. A lot of it turns out to be very useful information later on. There's also a lot of early references to the orphanage in Centra, including comments about Guardian Forces causing unforeseen mental effects including memory loss, Seifer and Zell's irrational hatred of one another, Quistis's attraction to Squall, Irvine's odd behavior around Edea and Selphie, and Squall's confused familiarity towards Ellone.
* In the Telltale Games ''VideoGame/SamAndMaxFreelancePolice'', items from previous episodes will often still be in your inventory. The only time something doesn't carry over is if it would completely change the way to solve a puzzle.
* ''VideoGame/OdinSphere'' is loaded with ChekhovsGun after ChekhovsGun.
* The LACK of this trope in adventure games can lead to an EmptyRoomPsych when the players go crazy trying to figure out what the useless inventory item is meant for.
* While not revealed at the start, it's worth noting that to complete ''VideoGame/ZeldaIITheAdventureOfLink'' (at least, the way it's [[GameplayDerailment meant to]] [[MinimalistRun be played]]) you must get every item and every spell in the game, which means you must get every MP upgrade as well. Some of these appear to be unnecessary until you've spent a lot of effort only to find it's impossible to progress. The game itself is so minimalist that there exist no more [[OneUp Link Dolls]] than you can hold at once.
* ''VideoGame/UltimaIX'' subverts this with Britain's Avatar Museum. It holds every puzzle-solving PlotCoupon in the history of the series, not one of which become relevant to this game.
* ''VideoGame/SwordOfTheStars'': There are tonnes of hints about the true nature of [[spoiler: the Suul'ka]] littered in the lore. It looks so obvious in hindsight.
* This guy named Adam Miller who's the author of several pretty good ''Neverwinter Nights'' mods does that from time to time. (For example, an amulet that lets you speak to the dead, which you can buy from a fortuneteller towards the beginning of ''Dreamcatcher'', is necessary for solving a side quest in ''Dreamcatcher 3''. Also notable is a three-part rod which you need to hunt for the pieces of in the first three ''Dreamcatcher'' mods.)
* In ''Freddy Pharkas: Frontier Pharmacist'', ''every single item'' you picked up had a use. Not only that, but if you tried combining an item with another item it didn't belong with, or using it on yourself, you'd ''always'' receive a humorous response (in addition to several NonstandardGameOver instances).
* {{Creator/Sierra}} loved this one:
** ''VideoGame/SpaceQuestIVRogerWilcoAndTheTimeRippers'' alone has a cigar butt, a laptop, a jar of corrosive slime scraped off the sewer walls, a battery-powered Energizer Bunny {{expy}}, a floppy disk, and a chewing gum wrapper be essential to stopping Vohaul's abuse of the TimeyWimeyBall. Then again, that game also has the [[RedHerring Unstable Ordinance]]...
** All of the pieces of evidence found over the course of ''VideoGame/PoliceQuest: Open Season'''s storyline come into use on the final day.
** Subverted in ''VideoGame/LeisureSuitLarry 5: Passionate Patti Does a Little Undercover Work'': Patti gets shown several gadgets in the FBI lab at the beginning of the game, [[spoiler:but she only uses one: the bra cannon]].
* In ''VideoGame/TheJourneymanProject'', the Wire Cutters found on Mars are used to open the fire sprinkler box in Australia and short-circuit Mercury; the Retinal biochip obtained from said robot is used to pass a retinal scanner in NORAD VI, where you also need the Oxygen Mask from Mars; the Access Card Bomb, also from Mars, is used to breach the Caldoria Heights rooftop door; and Mercury's stun gun is used to neutralize the BigBad. The one RedHerring is the Gas Canister in NORAD, which causes a GameOver if taken.
* Even for an adventure game, the fourth game in the ''{{VideoGame/Deponia}}'' series, ''Doomsday Deponia'', is particularly bad about this. There are many, many, many minor details whose full implications only become apparent later (sometimes much, much later) in the game.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* The Court Record in any ''Franchise/AceAttorney'' game is always a Chekhov's Armoury. Nearly every item will come in handy at some point in the case, and it's generally the most innocent ones (like [[spoiler: the parrot]]) who rescue you from the guilty verdict.
* ''VisualNovel/SharinNoKuni'' has one of these. Most of its items relate to [[spoiler:the fact that Ririko is actually there, in the scene, and she's almost always following Kenichi. It's just that no one even acknowledges her existence due to the Maximum Penalty she bears.]]

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* So much stuff in ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'' that the wiki doesn't even have a list. The most notable examples might be the Heterodyne it's-not-a-lamp, Agatha's broken locket, the fate of Dr. Merlot... and oh, Dear Ghu, the time windows.
* ''Webcomic/EightBitTheater'':
** The comic has pulled the mother of all of these, a series of over 1000 comics now taking a seemingly insignificant event from one of the earliest comics and turning it into a plot device involving billions of years, the most powerful wizard in existence, and bringing back most of the major antagonists of the past 1000 comics BACK into the story for what will almost certainly be one of the comic's grand, absurdly awesome {{anticlimax}}es.
** When the characters all get their class changes, Thief says that he stole his ninja upgrade from the future. Later, when [[spoiler:Chaos downgrades the party back to level 1,]] Thief is the only one left in his class change suit. For about 5 seconds. [[spoiler:Because guess where he stole it from...]]
** In [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/02/20/episode-1221-longest-set-up-in-webcomic-history/ comic 1221]] it pulled quite possibly the biggest one in history at 1,214 issues long when it turnes out that [[spoiler: despite Black mage saying that it would never work the world was saved by four 'white' mages]]. Brian Clevinger we salute you.
* ''Webcomic/MSPaintAdventures'' - both ''Webcomic/ProblemSleuth'' and ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}''. Nearly every single item introduced becomes relevant to the plot, or at least pops up again later. Hussie admits that a lot of his foreshadowing is done by going back and looking for stuff to make references to. He has ''also'' admitted to having at least one plot detail in store for a year.
* ''Webcomic/LastRes0rt'' -- If it's an item, pet, or person that has anything to do with one of the main characters, it's probably a ChekhovsGun. Jigsaw's violin, Jason's jacket, Jason's dog, Adharia's bottle necklace, Daisy's leg, Daisy's autie lenses, ''Cypress's hair wrap...''
* ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'' keeps its armory stocked with Chekhov's full arsenal. [[ChekhovsGunman Minor characters]], [[ChekhovsGag running gags given new significance]]... even [[RedHerring red herrings]] have a tendency to return as some sort of plot device.
* ''Webcomic/{{Unsounded}}'' did this with many variants on the ''same'' Chekhov's Gun. "Beadman's" was frequently used as a [[AcmeProducts generic product brand]] until, in chapter 13, [[http://www.casualvillain.com/Unsounded/comic/ch13/ch13_14.html Beadman turns out to be an actual person]] with a role in the plot.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* ''Fanfic/FalloutEquestria'' is an epic Checkhov's Armory, written by an author who has professed ChekhovsGun as a favorite trope, stating that "everything is either a ChekhovsGun or a RedHerring."
* ''Literature/WhateleyUniverse'':
** The 'verse is made of this trope. For example, nearly every single thing Phase has ever bought or acquired for her utility belt has gotten used ''somewhere'', even if it's in another author's story. The story about Cavalier and Skybolt turning to the Dark Side and becoming The Don's servants was written back in 2004. The significance of that and what it really meant to the plots has only come out in the more recent stories, starting with "Christmas Elves". The backstory of Tennyo was introduced in the earliest stories; how it could be used as a weapon against her didn't come out for about ''five years''.
** The Whateley Weapons Fair. Most of what we saw has turned out to be important, either in that story, or later on. Jobe's whiny arrogance (and frightening competence), Delta Spike's well-earned nickname, Wunderkind and Spark's personal forcefield generators, the equipment nobody wanted to buy from Mega-Death, Kew's inventions for the Intelligence Cadet Corps, even the super-strong condoms Greasy made for superstrong students.
* Practically literal with the showdown between [[WebVideo/AtopTheFourthWall Linkara]] [[spoiler: and his alternates]] and Mechakara. Almost every weapon [[spoiler: bar pokeball-captured Pyramid Head, which Linkara felt would just be too much in an already complicated battle]] from previous reviews is brought out, along with [[spoiler: Black Lantern Spoony and the rarely-seen Pollo.]]
* The players in the ''Roleplay/GlobalGuardiansPBEMUniverse'' were encouraged to flesh out their characters' backgrounds to the fullest extent possible precisely because they would then be used as one big Chekhov's Armory. Even characters who had backgrounds that were mysterious even to themselves found their BackStory used for plot details later.
* ''Literature/MotherOfLearning'' contains innumerable details in the early chapters whose importance only come to light many, many chapters later.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/AeonFlux'' was filled with these, although most were quite obvious.
* ''WesternAnimation/TotallySpies!'' does this every single episode, as a James Bond reference.
* ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'' is legendary for its extensive usage of Chekhov's Gun. For just a few examples, in the first season, Katara's necklace, inherited from her mother and grandmother, provides a major catalyst when they reach the Northern Water Tribe, two episodes from the Season 1 finale, and someone who knew Katara's grandmother recognizes it. The "Day Of Black Sun" episodes have a whole army of Chekov's Gunmen, who bring together techniques and ideas seeded throughout the series up to that point. And even Uncle Iroh's favorite white lotus tiles end up paying off in a big way.
* ''WesternAnimation/LeroyAndStitch'' had Lilo's departing gifts to Stitch, Pleakley and Jumba. Stitch's gift was a tiki necklace which [[spoiler:allowed Lilo to identify Leroy as an imposter because he wasn't wearing it]]. Next was a rock given to Pleakley that was used to [[spoiler:disrupt the event horizon of a black hole that he, Stitch and Jumba were hurtling into and allow them to escape]]. Finally there was the Aloha 'Oe record given to Jumba which he used to [[spoiler:create a secret mechanism in Leroy that made him shut down if he (or his clones) heard it. This ends up leading to both a [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome Crowning Moment]] and a CrowningMusicOfAwesome the end where Stitch, Lilo, [[strike:625]] Reuben and a bunch of Stitch's cousins put on a concert to defeat the Leroy clone army at the end]].
* This is a staple of many cartoons aimed at very young children. ''WesternAnimation/DoraTheExplorer'', which started the trend, actually averts the trope slightly by sometimes carrying a few items she doesn't need.
* Averted in WesternAnimation/TheVentureBrothers. One episode has Brock Sampson going through the standard OSI mission tool kit, and throws away everything in it because they are either "gay, stupid, or never uses them." Much like in the ''Dresden Files'' example above, large group scenes tend to introduce characters and plot points that become very significant later on, so it may at first seem like the writers are using this trope. They aren't. They've admitted when they're stuck they just go back and look at old episodes to find something to write about.
* Used expertly in ''WesternAnimation/{{Rango}}''. [[spoiler: Roadkill and the Spirit of the West? Used to break Rango out of his HeroicBSOD. The freaky cactai? Lead Rango to the pip the mayor is using to hold back the water and help turn it back on to defeat Jake and save the town. The hole the three moles dug in the middle of the street? Used to let a blast of water up to blast Jake skyhigh. The rest of the mole's family? Used in a GondorCallsForAid to defeat Jake. The one bullet Jake leaves in Rango's gun? Used to free Rango and Bean from the mayor's DeathTrap.]] The crowner is Rango is actually smart enough to use it intentionally!
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic:''
** There's one for every other episode, [[spoiler:and one that was built up over an entire season to boot. The letters Twilight writes to Celestia throughout the first season are used to snap her out of a TenMinuteRetirement and inspire her to fight for her friends and snap them out of Discord's brainwashing.]]
** Season 4 gives us: A top-secret box of mystery, a Pony of Shadows, a magic comic book, and [[spoiler:a hint that Fluttershy may still be a vampire.]] The trinkets obtained by each of the Mane Six over the course of the season are revealed during the finale to be the keys to the mystery box, the comic book is traded by Spike in "Trade Ya!", and it is implied that the Pony of Shadows was Tirek in his weakened state. Whether "Flutterbat" will return remains to be seen.
* In WesternAnimation/YoungJustice, a lot of Wally's souvenirs that he collects from each mission, end up helping or even ''saving'' the team at some points.
* ''WesternAnimation/ShimmerAndShine'': In "A Tree-mendous Rescue", by the time the plot starts, Leah has already used up her three daily wishes. The items she wished for turn out to be helpful when Zac and Kaz have to find the girls.
* ''WesternAnimation/BojackHorseman'': Had Chekhov not existed, this show could have been the TropeNamer. Bojack was one of the first shows to account for the rise of binge-watching in it's development process, with each season being released at once. This allowed the writers to fill early episodes with hints about plot points that occur later in the season, resulting in a byzantine web of set-ups and payoffs that few shows can rival.