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* AcceptableTargets
** [[BadGuyBar "It was filled with every lowlife from Bombay to Calcutta...]] [[TakeThat it was worse than]] [[PlaceWorseThanDeath Detroit."]]
** The various religions and charitable causes being pitched in the airport, especially when Kramer starts charging through them all.
** "WZAZ in Chicago, [[FamousLastWords where disco lives forever]]!" ''[plane smashes through radio tower and takes out the antenna]'' In its original theatrical run, it was not uncommon for the audience to ''cheer'' at this point.
* BigLippedAlligatorMoment: The naked woman [[{{Gainaxing}} who bounces her naked breasts]] ([[ValuesDissonance in a PG film!]][[note]]The PG-13 rating did not exist at the time[[/note]]) in front of the camera as the passengers are panicking.
* CrossesTheLineTwice: Several gags, but particularly the "[[GetAholdOfYourselfMan hysterical woman gets slapped]]" one, not to mention stewardess Randy's disastrous attempt to cheer up the LittlestCancerPatient; both are played as BlackComedy.
* CrowningMusicOfAwesome: The Zuckers and Abrahams were actually disappointed when the film ended up with a genuinely good score, rather than a cheesy one that would add to the parody. They probably shouldn't have hired ElmerBernstein.
* [[CrowningMusicOfAwesome Crowning Music Of Funny]]: When Rumack (Nielson) tells Striker the end of the "George Zipp" story. Whether or not one's a fan of the [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_NxSTX0jkc&playnext=1&list=PL6C4A870152E947AA Notre Dame Fighting Irish]], the moment is hilarious.
* FunnyAneurysmMoment: The tagline "...and able to hit tall buildings at a single bound", and the plane running into and destroying a radio tower on a building.
** A Roman Catholic nun reading a magazine called ''Boys Life''.
** The full-body scanners that can see through clothing (and are obviously being used to ogle the women).
*** With TSA, this is now a cross between TruthInTelevision and ScienceMarchesOn.
** The turban-wearing Middle-Eastern passenger who douses himself in gasoline and tries to blow himself up to avoid listening to Striker talking.
* HilariousInHindsight: It's funny enough on its own, but the moment where Kareem Abdul-Jabbar finally breaks down and starts talking basketball is even funnier since Jabbar himself [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h03QVlrwI_s misidentified the line on Celebrity Jeopardy]].
** The film itself has inevitably had this effect on ''Zero Hour'', the major inspiration for its plot and many of its lines. It's downright surreal watching that film now and seeing lines like "I picked the wrong week to quit smoking" played completely straight.
* MemeticMutation: ''Every punchline'' has entered the [[PopCultureOsmosis cultural consciousness]].
** "Surely you can't be serious." "I am serious. And don't call me Shirley."
** "I just want to tell you both good luck. We're all counting on you."
** "I picked the wrong week to quit smoking, drinking..."
* RetroactiveRecognition: David Leisure (''Series/EmptyNest'', Joe Isuzu) is one of the Hare Krishna.
* TheScrappy: The constant {{Troll}} in the airport tower who eventually pulls an important plug at a vital moment, apparently because he ''wants'' to make life harder for everyone. It's even worse when you consider that [[KarmaHoudini he manages to get away with everything.]] But then, animosity toward his character is ''probably'' supposed to be the point. Still doesn't explain why he gets away with it, though.
* SeinfeldIsUnfunny: At the time, the entire joke with Leslie Nielson's character was seeing a serious actor bringing every bit of his usual gravitas to such ridiculous material. [[LeslieNielsenSyndrome Nielsen proceeded to make this kind of material his bread and butter]], so that viewers these days will likely just be surprised that he's not playing the lead role.
* ThisIsYourPremiseOnDrugs: ''Creator/MontyPython'' plus Creator/MelBrooks on speed.
** To get the film made, Zucker and company told film executives it was ''AnimalHouse'' on a plane. It wasn't.
* WeirdAlEffect: ''Zero Hour'', the movie it was based on.
** The film also parodies many of the subplots from the ''{{Airport}}'' film series.

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