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Chekhovs Gun: Western Animation
  • In Kim Possible, this was the finger trap from "The Ron Factor".
  • Like with James Bond's Q, every gadget that Jerry gives the girls in Totally Spies! gets used in that episode, many of them with even more ridiculously specialized uses.
  • Winx Club: In episode seven of the second season, a character gives a few pixies some jewels, and makes a point about how the season's Big Bad is trying to get into some place called Realix by collecting four pieces of something called the Codex... and that there is another way into this Realix place. After we gradually learn what all that means, in episode 26, the season finale, it's revealed that the other way is via those jewels, which had not been seen since they were given to the pixies.
    • In the original, however, she just gives them the jewels and says, "As you probably know by now, the situation is extremely critical. These must remain secret. You know what to do." We gradually learn all of the above information as the season progresses (instead of in one fell swoop early on as above), and one of the later episodes also has a flashback to that scene (which the dub cut out).
    • Season 4 provides a subversion: One of their smaller missions ends with the ethereal fairies giving them a {{Chekhov's Gift}} that can be used to save exactly one person from death. There was quite some speculation over who it would save, and given this show's nature, it would be used usefully, right? Well, the next episode sees Nabu getting his life drained from him, and naturally Layla decides to use the power on him... and then the season's Big Bads take the power from her and waste it on a limp flower.
    • The 4Kids dub provides an example of Chekhov's Gun being undermined via editing: An episode has Musa and Layla talking about what to perform at a concert she's having, and Layla suggests (and shows) some sort of rain dance. That information later becomes useful to defeat Stormy with. But in the dub version, they just show Musa defeating Stormy with the rain dance, and then show the scene with Musa and Layla discussing the concert, where Layla's dancing is now just her showing her dance, with any rain-related significance removed. Clip.
    • And the reverse has happened a few times before: While Bloom just randomly shields herself from a Trix attack, the dub has an off-screen Tecna telling her to use a "Griselda bubble", a shield that their teacher demonstrated in class at the start of the episode. Also, an S1 episode has dub-only dialog of Bloom reading up on a protection spell for an exam. Guess what she ends up doing in said exam.
    • If you're into Wild Mass Guessing, you could also argue that they turned a straight use into a subversion, by having Tecna's Sphere of Truth spell turn out not to have worked. To everyone else, it's a Dub-Induced Plot Hole.
  • This was parodied in an episode of Stripperella, when the tech group gives Stripperella a penny disintegrator and a really old guy gives her an over sized cellphone, and she is later trapped in a jar being filled with pennies. Unfortunately, the disintegrator takes a full minute for each penny, so she ends up using the cellphone to break the jar.
  • In The Simpsons Movie, Lisa tells Homer how to ride a motorcycle up and down a curved surface, which later enables him to save Springfield. Another is the sinkhole which Homer didn't fix, it later helps the Simpsons escape.
    • Within the show itself, the episode "The Blunder Years" has one of the most elaborate uses of this trope ever. Burly paper towels take up a good portion of the first act and then are not mentioned again until the end, when they are hastily re-introduced to resolve the main storyline. The Simpsons writers often note that events of the first act that set the main plot in motion usually have no bearing on anything else, so the possibility of this being a self-parody or roast are equally good.
      • This episode also had a throwaway line about Smithers' deceased father that later became important when the gorge was drained and Smithers the Elder's remained were unearthed. Call him a...Chekhov's Skull, if you will. *rimshot*
    • An earlier example: in the episode "Krusty Gets Busted". It seems with Krusty gone, Sideshow Bob has some big shoes to fill.
    • '"The Dad Who Knew Too Little", in which one of the presents Lisa gets for her eighth birthday is a Chekhov's Laser Pointer.
    • In "Who Shot Mr. Burns?" Towards the end of Part 1, there's a scene where Bart charges at Burns, only to stop when Burns reveals a holstered gun in his jacket. This turns out to be the one that shot him. A quite well-handled one, since we'd seen five or six people with guns already in the episode.
    • There are actually quite a few episodes of the Simpsons where Chekhov's Guns are used.
  • The Codename: Kids Next Door finale has Nigel's teammates tracking him down to a spaceship, thanks to a tracking device that was originally meant to be planted on the Delightful Children.
    • In a previous episode, a cigar-shaped-laser that can change a person's age is used on the main villain (who had owned it). At the very end, we see the Delightful Children from Down the Lane take it. A couple of episodes later, that same device is used to age Numbuh One (and several minor plot elements from previous stories also make a re-appearance). This was actually the very first significant cross-episode use of this trope in this series. Until the DCs showed up with the cigar again, the average viewer most likely would have shrugged the first episode's ending off as a generic The End... Or Is It? ending, not expecting any follow-up whatsoever.
    • One of the previous plot elements that makes a re-appearance in the above ep also provides a subversion: An episode begins with the gang training using a Humongous Mecha. Later, Numbuh Three calls it in to fight a giant turnip... that promptly smashes it to bits while she's locking and loading. (In fact, every single appearance of the training mecha ends with it getting smashed or whatever... including the one time it actually did anything useful.)
    • In one episode, it is established at the end that Numbah Four cannot swim. This fact later becomes essential in a "Operation U.T.O.P.I.A", causing Numbuh One to realize that he is trapped in a virtual world, because the person he percieves as Numbah Four can swim.
    • The Boyfriend Helmet.
    • Lizzie's soup in Operation: S.N.O.W.I.N.G.
    • Chester's Happy Headband, another example that appears in "Operation U.T.O.P.I.A".
  • South Park:
    • The Movie has Cartman's V-Chip in his brain. Cartman had it put in to prevent him from swearing. The chip then shorted out when it absorbed most of the electricity while Cartman rescued Terrence and Phillip from the electric chair. And now that he found out that swearing causes bolts of electricity to shoot from his hands, he's able to take out Saddam's undead army.
    • The "goo" that came out of the Rob Reiner at the end of "Butt Out" becomes a plot point in the episode "200".
    • "The Death of Eric Cartman" establishes that the boys love KFC. After the boys decide to start ignoring him after eating all the chicken breading, he becomes convinced that he is actually dead, confirming it to himself when hearing reports about what he ate clogging the toilet as referring to rupturing his colon.
      • The plot of a latter episode, "Medicinal Fried Chicken" revolves heavily around KFC.
    • The "Kenny born for the 52nd time" gag at the end of "Cartman Joins NAMBLA" becomes a major plot point in the "Coon and Friends" trilogy.
    • In "Margaritaville", Kyle holds a Sermon about the economy, saying he applied for an American Express Platinum card to prove a point, and holds it up to show his audience. Near the end of the episode, he uses that same credit card to pay off the town's debts.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender fans have become incredibly familiar with, and wary of, this trope, as apparently nigh-on EVERYTHING in the show eventually comes back as a major plot point later on.
    • Uncle Iroh's white lotus Pai-Sho tile: when first discussed, it is stated that most players regard it as a weak piece (though Iroh mentions that it is the most important piece to his "strategy"), making it seem like an even bigger waste of Zuko's time to go into town to look for one. However, early in the second season, it is revealed that the lotus tile is, in fact, a calling card for a secret Illuminati organization called The Order of the White Lotus. This point comes up yet again, when, as a parting gift, Sokka's master gives him a white lotus tile, showing that, not only was Sokka's master a member, but Sokka is now an unknowing member himself.
    • In the first season's finale, Admiral Zhao mentions entering a library hidden "deep beneath the sands" in his youth, where he learns how to kill the Moon God. Aang and his friends, in turn, unknowingly find the same library in the second season, and learn how to defeat the Fire Nation: by attacking the Fire Nation capitol on The Day of Black Sun.
    • The amulet full of water from the Northern Water Tribe's spirit oasis, presented to Katara at the beginning of season two: Shortly before the season finale, Katara shows it to Prince Zuko, explaining that she'd been saving it for something important and suggesting that it could be used to heal his facial scarring, by way of foreshadowing the fact that she uses it to save Aang's life at the end of the finale. Too bad that only a few episodes previous, Jet was fatally injured and the spirit oasis water was never mentioned, prompting certain viewers to think that maybe he hadn't been fatally injured after all. They were right the first time.
    • Zuko's swords, seen hanging on the wall in the first episode, eventually become his weapons of choice as the story progresses; unfortunately for him, it is this signature dual-wielding style which allows Zhao to uncover the truth that Zuko is The Blue Spirit.
    • One that nobody saw coming was various appearance of Lion Turtles: a picture of one in "The Library", and the statue and line about one in "Sokka's Master".
    • Another that even less saw coming: Iroh's sandal Zuko finds while looking for him in the first season. Used in the last episodes to track Iroh using Jun's beast, after Zuko reveals he had it all this time. This series defines this trope.
    • Toph's bracelet/piece of meteoric iron is something of Double Subversion: she missed the time it would be really useful because she didn't have it on her, but it served a mildly useful purpose an episode later (picking a lock).
    • During the first episode of the third season, Katara commented, while healing Aang's burn on his back, that she could feel "a lot of energy twisted up around there". In the very last episode of the series, Aang was hit hard on the scar of said burn. It was what was preventing him from using the Avatar state. Cue asskicking the Fire Lord time.
    • A more ingenious one, although it's more of a Chekhov's Skill. Remember in the episode The Storm when Iroh redirected lightning? Guess what begins to become really important throughout the second half of sesaon two and season three?
    • Katara's necklace is also used pretty ingeniously as a Chekhov's Gun. She is shown wearing it in the first episode, and then later Zuko takes it and uses it to track down Katara and the Avatar. Later, when the gang goes to the Northern Water Tribe, it is only after seeing Katara's necklace that Master Paku realizes that she is the granddaughter of his first love, for whom he made the necklace. This in turn causes him to change his mind about teaching Katara waterbending, her knowledge of which is essential in the rest of the series.
    • In an early season one episode, Katara and Sokka get sick, and Momo is sent to fetch water. He brings back piles of random junk instead. One of these items is a crown with two dragons facing each other. Guess what they find in season three? The secret society of Sun Warriors, with two dragons that perform a 'dance' that ends in the exact position shown on the crown.
    • The sky bison whistle that seems like a one-shot gag pops up multiple times aftwerwards.
  • Invader Zim "Plague of Babies": Early in the episode, we're introduced to the "Power Amplifier", a device which (evidently) "amplifies" whatever is fed into it — hence, when its input leads are plugged into Gir's head, it begins "sending out deadly waves of stupidness" (which briefly incapacitates Zim, but his PAK is able to "reboot" him). Then at the end of the episode, Zim uses this device to defeat the "baby" aliens.
  • In one episode of Buzz Lightyear of Star Command, the team is on an alien spaceship headed for an inhabited planet. On the bridge, they try to figure out how to stop, steer, or otherwise control the spaceship, but all they find are things that activate windshield wipers and a cup holder. Later, the alien is revived, and shows them that the cup holder is actually the ship's steering mechanism.
  • In Disney's film Recess: School's Out, TJ steals back his lucky baseball from the principal's office. At the end of the film, this baseball is used to foil the evil plan.
  • Parodied in Family Guy with Mayor Adam West giving Quagmire a banana and cryptically telling him that "When the time comes, you'll know". The banana ultimately proves useless in the end (Probably because Quagmire was Genre Blind to do a gag involving a banana peel).
    • Knowing Mayor West, the intended use hinted at in the cryptic instruction was to use it to have a nourishing snack. We are talking about the guy who swallowed a magazine and Stratego back in the eighties just in case he was ever in a hostage situation that dragged on so long he got bored. Speaking of which, a Chekhov's Gun there, too-in the episode where Brian holds Mayor West hostage, Stewie finds in the candy jar at his grandparents' house, a set of keys to an old model of car that isn't in production any longer. Mayor West agrees to drop all the charges incurred in the hostage situation provided they can give him a set of keys to that exact model of car. Quoth Stewie: "You're welcome."
  • In the Fantastic Four: World's Greatest Heroes episode "Strings", Reed suddenly feels like building a device. At the end of the episode, it turns out to be an amplifier for the Puppet Master's powers.
  • This is the plot basis for 95% of all Danny Phantom episodes, with their numerous Fenton devices and occasionally Tucker's personal items.
  • Happens in most episodes of The Adventures Of Jimmy Neutron Boy Genius. In his most dire moment, Jimmy will have a "brain blast" and remember some trivial detail or offhand comment from earlier in the episode, and use it to save the day.
  • An episode of Storm Hawks involved Dark Ace getting his hands on a suit of huge robotic armor. At the same time, Finn gets enthralled by a transforming puzzle (like an uber Rubix). It kept being conspicuously brought up when the other characters were trying to figure out how to stop Dark Ace. In fact, both the puzzle and the armor were said to drive people insane. It was working up to some revelation that either it could be used to distract Dark Ace as he falls into dementia (it's even mentioned that he's got diminished mental ability due to the suit) or that somehow the puzzle and suit are related. Turned out to be mostly red herring though: An offhanded comment about powering it up when it went out of juice was key to victory. The toy itself was unceremoniously melted in the episode's denouement.
    • Played straight with the Oracle Stone from the Forbidden City in season one, which turns out to be a very, very important item in the final (and only real arc) of the series, with serious ramifactions when it falls into the wrong hands.
  • The "No Dogs Allowed" signs in Snoopy Come Home, which had been tormenting the beagle throughout the film, until the end, when one sign on Lila's apartment building got Snoopy out of his moral obligation to her, allowing him to return to Charlie Brown.
  • In a Road Runner/Wile E. Coyote cartoon, Wile E. sets up a metal gate in the middle of the road that pops up from the ground with the flick of a switch. Road Runner comes by, Wile E flicks the switch...and the trap fails to go off, even when he tries to set it off manually — not even to catch Wile E himself. Frustrated, he tries other attempts to catch the Road Runner. When he finally starts to catch up, they come across the metal gate, which finally pops up, and Wile E slams right into it.
    • There's another Road Runner cartoon where Wile E sets up a crate filled with explosives that will activate when someone picks up the glass of water sitting on top of it, setting up a sign reading "Last Water For [something hundred, I don't remember the exact number] Miles". Road Runner then pops up behind him with a sign reading "Road Runners can't read and don't drink," flicks his tongue and zooms off. At the end of the episode, Wile E is dragging himself along, having escaped another explosion, exhausted, tired, and defeated. He notices a crate with a glass of water and, relieved, picks it up. He realizes what he's done just before the crate explodes.
      • A third one involves a huge squadron of glider dynamite bombs which he releases early in the cartoon. The rest of the episode involves the glide bombs showing up at inopportune times and foiling his schemes, usually in an explosive manner (natch).
  • Used extensively in Gargoyles during the Avalon World Tour Arc. In almost every episode, somebody would relate some legend or fairy tale, and the characters would inevitably end up encountering it.
    • Sorta lampshaded during the arc when Goliath is explaining their adventures to a Laser-Guided Amnesia addled Elisa. Elisa asks if they really met the Loch Ness Monster, King Author, and the Holy Grail. Goliath says they haven't encountered the Holy Grail... Yet. Nearly a decade later, the Holy Grail would become important in the comic book series. Word of God has said this was intended as a Chekhov's Gun.
    • Early in season one, Elisa would get a partner cop, Matt Bluestone, who is very much Agent Mulder. He explains some of his conspiracy theories, which Elisa dismisses as bogus. She would encounter every single one a season later.
  • This crops up from time to time in The Fairly Oddparents, like Cosmo's thoughts being elevator music in "Mind Over Magic", or Poof's smile being uplifting in "Wishology: Part III".
    • Timmy's toy yo-yo in the live-action movie is also one of these; Tootie uses it to escape the spherical cage in Magnate's lair.
  • The Dethphone, in its first appearance in Metalocalypse, a phone that the band created while they were drunk. It has spikes all over it, doesn't get nighttime minutes until 11 PM, and it's designed to eat up minutes. Murderface, after getting annoyed with it one last time, ends up using it to kill the troll they summoned early in the episode.
  • Jonny Quest TOS episode examples: "Mystery of the Lizard Men" (hydrofoil and mirror), "The Robot Spy" (Parapower Ray Gun), "Arctic Splashdown" (snow skimmer), "Calcutta Adventure" (ultrasonic amplifier), "Pirates from Below" (Jonny and Hadji's communication devices and the underwater probe's waldo arms), "The House of Seven Gargoyles" (Strontium Glacier being dangerous, Professor Ericson's helicopter).
  • Futurama: In "Future Stock", That Eighties Guy mentions that he got himself cryogenically frozen because he had terminal bone-itis and there was no cure in his day (there almost was one, but The Eighties Guy bought out the pharmaceutical company that made the cure and sold off all the assets for a cool $100 million). It isn't mentioned again for the rest of the episode...until the very end, where it kills him before he can take full control of Planet Express, and all his shares revert back to Fry, their original owner.
    "My only regret...is that I have...bone-itis..."
    • There's a newer example that actually is a gun, too. In the beginning of "Lrrreconcible Ndndifferences," Farnsworth looks at an ad he put in a comic book for a "disintegrater ray" which is actually a teleporter (teleporters are apparently cheap and worthless in the year 3010). Later, an "Omicronian" that Lrrr had a one-night stand with appears holding the same kind of gun, and Ndnd steals it and shoots her. Later, Ndnd passes the gun to Lrrr and he is forced to shoot either Leela or Ndnd. He chooses to shoot Leela, but Fry does a pseudo-Heroic Sacrifice by jumping in the way. He is apparently destroyed, but then Lrrr's ex-girlfriend comes back and says the gun she had was just a stupid teleporter, and Fry is found in the Planet Express building.
    • A subtle one in "How Hermes Requisitioned His Groove Back." At the beginning of the episode, Hermes makes an offhand comment about stamping a form five times. The villain's fatal mistake in the end of the episode? Only stamping a form four times.
    • In "The Six Million Dollar Man" after Hermes puts his brain into an enormous robot body, Zoidberg takes his old body parts (he would sew them back together to use as a ventriloquist dummy) and Hermes asks if he's been eating them, to which Zoidberg retorts that he can't eat them because Hermes' skin is too spicy from all the goat he eats. After Zoidberg puts Hermes' brain back in his old body, Roberto, who was killed in prison earlier in the episode and whose brain Farnsworth inadvertently chose to replace Hermes' after the latter wanted a robot brain transplant, takes Hermes' robot body and uses his vegetable peeler to peel off a piece of Hermes' skin and eat it. Hermes' goat-laden skin causes Roberto to overheat and melt.
  • In one episode of Filmations Ghostbusters, Tracy chomps down on a piece of bubble gum before the team enters a haunted castle. It becomes useful later. Does that make this Chekhov's Gum?
  • In an early scene of the Russian The Snow Queen film, (the animated one) a bird freezes to death to save her babies from the cold, and it becomes more important later on in the film rather than just serving as a Tear Jerker.
  • In Legion Of Superheroes, Superman X, through LEGO Genetics, was given immunity to the literal Kryptonite Factor. It was never addressed again, and not even once throughout the series did it have any use, until the finale, when it saves the Original Superman's life.
  • Archer: Archer gives a gun, branded "Chekhov", to Cyril and adds that it tends to go off for no reason. Later on... nothing happens with the Chekhov gun, but the unreliable pen he also gave him does become important. So let's see, that's subversion, aversion, lampshading and playing it straight?
    Archer: "God, I SAID the cap slips off the poison pen for no reason, didn't I?!"
    Cyril: "I know, I know, but I just assumed that if anything bad happened it-it would've been-"
    Archer: "No, do NOT say the Chekhov gun Cyril! THAT, sir, is a facile argument!"
    Woodhouse: "Also woefully esoteric."
  • The Wayne Manor technology fair sequence in The Batman vs. Dracula introduces a machine that stores and releases sunlight. Hm... A sunlight-beam machine in a vampire movie? I wonder if it will be used at all later.
  • Early in the Batman: The Animated Series episode Trial, Gotham's new district attorney takes a batarang off of a gang leader Batman has caught. Near the end of the episode, when the inmates of Arkham Asylum have the two of them hostage and have strapped Batman to a table, the D.A. pulls the batarang from her pocket and throws it at a hanging lamp, darkening the room and allowing Batman to escape.
  • In Mickey, Donald, Goofy: The Three Musketeers, Goofy manages to recreate a Disaster Dominoes sequence from earlier to defeat the Beagle Boys.
  • This shows up from time to time in Jimmy Two-Shoes. One example is the Miracle-Gro Monster in "The Big Date".
    • Another example where Jimmy uses "Do penguins love meatballs?" to mean "yes", confusing the person he's talking to. At the end, he defeats the Rodeo Clowns by covering them in meatballs, which causes them to be eaten by penguins.
  • The Critic: In the episode "Miserable" (a parody of the book/film Misery), Jay’s #1 Fan shows Jay a cardboard cutout of himself holding a book he wrote. She tells him she hooked it up to her Clapper, and demonstrates by clapping to it, and the cutout waves the book up and down and says "Buy my book!" multiple times. At the episode’s climax, Jeremy breaks down the door to save Jay (she drugged Jay's glass of wine and tied him to her bed with strips of movie film, keeping him there for days). She madly lunges at Jeremy with a knife in her hand, when Jay claps his hands and triggers the cutout, hitting her on the head and knocking her unconscious.
  • Total Drama Island: In episode 8, Beth picks up a souvenir from the challenge of the cursed island. It gives their team "bad luck" for three episodes, and leads to her elimination when her team discovers she has it. However, it is also partially averted in that Chris keeps reminding us of it in recaps, because Viewers Are Morons.
    • In one episode of Total Drama World Tour, the prize for winning a challenge is an electric meat grinder, which Heather promptly throws out the window despite being warned not to. Next episode, the teams have to stuff sausages, grinding meat by hand. Instead of using, say, an electric meat grinder.
  • In a Season 1 episode of Sonic Sat AM, the Freedom Fighters discover a species of "metal-eating" plants that instantly corrode metal into dust upon contact. The plants' harmless seeds are harvested before the episode is over, but they aren't ever brought up again directly. However, come the final episode of the series, we discover that Rotor's been developing metal-eating balloons (water balloon-like tossable projectiles). Arguably, the chemical inside the balloons could have come from the aforementioned plants.
  • In the Justice League episode "Injustice for All", Green Lantern uses his ring to snatch a chunk of kryptonite away from Lex Luthor. Batman grabs it from midair and tucks it into his utility belt. Twenty episodes later, the kryptonite comes back into play when Batman takes it out of his utility belt to use as a weapon against Amazo.
  • In episode 14 of The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan, Mr. Chan plays a violin at a pitch high enough to break glass, a seemingly random scene. Later, he has Alan play a recording of a violin in order to break the plaster molding covering the missing Winged Venus statue, thus solving the caper.
  • In the Phineas and Ferb episode "What Do It Do?", we have the father, Lawrence, giving a lecture to many students about the Earl of Whiskershire's eccentric life, which culminates in his creation of a scepter specially designed to spring traps. Later in the episode, Agent P notices the Earl's statue, which holds the scepter, and uses it to escape the many traps in Doofenshmirtz's out-of-control hover jet.
    • The map in Ferb's pocket near the start of "Summer Belongs To You!" comes in handy near the end, when Phineas and the gang are stranded on a desert island, and manage to get home by folding it into a giant paper airplane.
  • When Kryptonite was first introduced in Superman: The Animated Series, Lex Luthor trapped Lois and Superman in an exhibit in his new museum with the Kryptonite and attempted to kill them both with a robotic dinosaur. Luckily, they had learned Kryptonite's radiation could be shielded with lead, and Superman remembered earlier from listening to a tour guide that some cups in the exhibit were, in fact, lead.
  • Transformers Beast Wars had several set up in it's first season, such as the alien artifacts that were lying around. Rhinox notes that one of the moons doesn't seem right, that it's much lighter than it should be, a Chekhov's Gun that gets fired twice. First it's actually an alien super-weapon that is designed to wipe out all life on the planet, because it is a giant experiment and the Vok needed a way to reset it if it got contaminated, such as from a bunch of marooned time-travellers. Second, it means the planet only had one moon, and the damage the weapon did revealed that it was Earth All Along.
  • Blackarachnia's helmet, as revealed at the end of the Transformers Animated episode "Predacons Rising." As seen in a flashback in "Along Came a Spider", while Blackarachnia, Sentinel, and Optimus Prime are exploring the Spider Planet just right before they accidentally leave Blackarachnia behind in the caves, causing her to mutate into her current form, her helmet can actually be seen lying next to a Decepticon ship near several energon cubes.
  • Done rather subtly in the Transformers Prime episode "Alpha, Omega": Late in the episode, Smokescreen explains how he was able to use an artifact called the Phase Shifter to protect himself from Megatron's attack. The Shifter was in fact on his arm the entire time, just simply not mentioned or noted until it was brought up.
  • Almost every seemingly meaningless event in the first fifteen minutes of the Kim Possible movie became important to Dr. Drakken's evil scheme.
  • In the Adventure Time episode It Came From The Nightosphere, Finn records Marceline's sad song about her belief that her father doesn't care about her. After releasing him into the land of Ooo, Finn wants to get him back into the Nightosphere, and Marceline tags along, but just for her bass back. After getting her bass back and expressing her anger towards her father, Marceline storms off, until Finn pulls out the recording, and Marceline and her father reunite.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • The show has one an entire season in the making. Discord has Mind Raped the mane six and Twilight has given up. She comes home to find Princess Celestia has been sending her scrolls all day. It turns out they're the letters that Twilight had been sending Celestia the entire previous season. They remind her what her friends mean to her and help her realize how to stop Discord.
    • Twilight and Cadance's "Sunshine, sunshine, ladybug's awake" song in A Canterlot Wedding Part 1 is the reason Twilight can determine that Cadance is really Cadance in Part 2
    • The second season finale has Pinkie's "I never leave home without my party cannon!" statement return when she pulls it out of nowhere to wield against mooks. This took 17 episodes to return. Also a technique utilized half a season prior (in the ancient past in universe) to defeat the Windigos is used to defeat the Big Bad, only using The Power of Love in place of The Power of Friendship.
    • In the very end of ''The Crystal Empire, Part 2", Luna pulls out a black book. There's no focus on it so you probably wouldn't pay attention to it until you rewatch the episode after seeing the season 3 finale, where the book is sent to Twilight and she is asked to complete a spell in it.
    • In Equestria Games, the anti-magic field later prevents magic-using ponies from helping out with magic during the ice cloud incident.
    • In Twilight's Kingdom Part 2, the medallion Tirek gives to Discord as a sign of "trust" turns out to be Twilight's key, which Discord gives her after she shows she still considers him a friend after his betrayal.
  • American Dad! episode "Hurricane!" parodies the whole idea of Chekhov's Gun with Stan's college javelin. Every time it's mentioned, the character looks directly at the camera and enunciates the words "Old. College. Javelin." Near the end of the episode, when it comes in handy to kill a bear Stan let into the house, Stan turns to the screen and says "Did you remember?" before throwing it and accidentally hitting Francine, instead.
    • It's subverted in another episode involving an evil hot tub. The salesman gives Stan a bottle of liquid which he needs to spray on the tub if he has any trouble with it. It isn't mentioned again until right near the end when he's propelled out of a second floor window, bounces off the saleman's car and another bottle falls out and lands next to him. Stan then remembers the salesman's words, but dies a moment later.
  • In ThunderCats (2011) young Catfolk Prince Lion-O purchases a suspected piece of Lost Technology from Jorma, his Friend in the Black Market. After seeing an enemy Lizard Folk use an identical object to blow up a wall while invading his city, Lion-O realizes his find is a Sticky Bomb, In Working Order, no less. He grabs some others he's secreted away to join the fight against the Lizards, saving his father Claudus and brother Tygra by using the bombs to blow up some of the Lizards' Walking Tanks. Amongst Jorma's many other Cow Tools the sharp-eyed viewer can also spot at least one Ro-bear Berbil arm.
  • In Young Justice, Robin finds an arrow in "Schooled" and Kid Flash saves it as a souvenir. Artemis would use this arrow in "Homefront" to save the rest of the team.
    • Dr Fate's helmet in "Denial" would become an important point in "Revelation" as Aqualad would wear it to stop the Injustice League.
  • The Amazing World of Gumball lampshades and double subverts this one in "The Robot", where Bobert tries to take over Gumball's life. When it looks like the end, Gumball wishes some element that had previously been an inconvenience would appear and save him. At this point, Darwin leaps in to help...and gets knocked through the fence. Then, when Bobert advances on Gumball, the lawn sprinkler (which had previously sprayed Gumball when he was forced to sleep outside) comes on and shorts Bobert out.
    • Played straight in "The Job". Richard mentions early on that he sometimes eats the pizzas he's supposed to deliver. At the end, Larry finds out about this, giving him the excuse he needs to fire Richard, thereby averting the destruction of the Universe.
  • Star Trek: The Animated Series episode "How Sharper Than A Serpent's Tooth". When Dr. McCoy is teleported to Kukulkan's ship, he mentions that he has his medical kit with him. Near the end of the episode a Capellan Power Cat has gotten loose. Captain Kirk uses a hypo from the kit to inject the Power Cat with a powerful sedative, ending the threat.
  • Scooby-Doo mysteries also use this, the gang tends to find some odd clue which later becomes integral in solving the mystery their in.
  • The entire premise of Mike the Knight is based on this. Mike's sword has been magically altered to be the gun. Each episode it is revealed, confusing Mike until he realizes later how to apply it to the situation.
  • Early in Roswell Conspiracies: Aliens, Myths and Legends a Doomsday Device called the EMP bomb is introduced. Not much is said of it until the Grand Finale when it's just the thing needed to destroy the invading Shadoen fleet.
  • Barbie As The Princess And The Pop Star: Keira's Outfit Microphone and Tori's Hairchanging Hairbrush helped them to capture the bad guy.
  • In the Adventure Time episode "Red Starved", at the start of the episode, Marceline finds a spoon. At the end, Marceline sucks out Princess Bubblegum's blood after being starved for quite a while, and Bubblegum uses the spoon to cure herself.
  • Gravity Falls combines this with a Brick Joke. When told she can choose anything she wants from the Mystery Shack for free in the first episode, Mabel picks a grappling hook. She uses it to save herself and Dipper from falling to their deaths in the season one finale, twenty episodes later.
  • Uncle Grandpa: In "Jorts", Mr. Gus gets Tiny Miracle the Robot Boy to take off his jean-shorts, but decides it's taking too long and to do it himself. At the end, he comes to accept the jean-shorts, right before Tiny Miracle completes the task.
    • Another example in "Bad Morning". The episode opens with Pizza Steve eating ice cream for breakfast, but falling asleep before he can finish it. At the end, Mr. Gus uses it to give Uncle Grandpa a sugar crash in order to get him to go back to sleep so he can wake up on the right side of the bed and stop having a bad morning.

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