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[[quoteright:295:[[ComicBook/TheLifeAndTimesOfScroogeMcDuck http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/b3c0d1d3f9bf935bf5c14df6415ca2d3.png]]]]

->''"And then, at the absolute climactic height of the action sequence, everything went dark."''
-->-- ''Fangs of Endearment: A Vampire Novel'' by Creator/DaveBarry

Or: [[Film/AViewToAKill A Non-View To A Kill]]

It's finally arrived; the climactic moment where good meets evil, where right fights wrong, where...someone will get their ass kicked! But then, suddenly, the camera decides not to focus on the great battle, but rather on something a little more insignificant, like the pool or some other innocent area, with only the sound of the battle heard (perhaps somewhat muffled) and perhaps the occasional ScreenShake, especially in animated media. [[ReactionShot Focusing on the faces of observing characters]] gives a good gauge of the brutality of the fight without showing the fight itself; [[DistantReactionShot zooming out farther]] without reducing the battle noise is a less common variant, but still not too rare in comedies. It stays this way for the entire fight, only showing the aftermath.

There are a variety of reasons for this. The first is money: the producers might not have had enough money to ''actually'' film an epic battle, resulting in a FightUnscene. This might lead to an OffscreenMomentOfAwesome. On the other hand, if they care enough, they could combine this with the second reason: artistic quality. A big fight scene might not be that interesting or original - but deliberately ''not'' showing the fight, instead focusing on something mundane, that could be considered [[TrueArt art]]. But beware: this could lead to FauxSymbolism. There's also a third reason: perhaps the director did want a really violent and/or bloody battle, but the MoralGuardians objected too much. Or, if it's a cartoon, it could be due to the RuleOfFunny. Often, these are shown either through a BigBallOfViolence or zooming outside a building and showing it bounce and tumble around from the force of the battle.

Related to FightUnscene, GoryDiscretionShot, BigBallOfViolence and SoundOnlyDeath. Compare and contrast with ChargeIntoCombatCut, OffscreenMomentOfAwesome, RelaxOVision, and GreatOffscreenWar. Most of the time, the viewer will have to TakeOurWordForIt.

'''Warning: Contains spoilers'''

!! Examples:


[[folder: Anime]]
* ''Manga/TsukuyomiMoonPhase'' has this problem in the televised version, as the fight between Hazuki and Count Kinkel took place almost entirely off-screen. The DVD version fixed the issue.
* [[PlayedForLaughs Used for humorous effect]] in ''Anime/ExcelSaga'' when Excel is killing [[spoiler: the creator of the original manga, Koshi Rikdo,]] [[RelaxOVision random shots of flowers and butterflies are seen in place of the supposedly gory action.]]
* ''Manga/BlackLagoon'':
** The majority of the gun battle between Revy and Roberta of was done like this.
** Revy and Roberta later settle their grudge with a fistfight, and most of it is only heard, as other characters watching them discuss the fight.
* In ''Manga/{{Bleach}},'' the fight between [[spoiler: Espada #0 Yammy Rialgo]] and the team of Rukia, Chad, and Renji takes place mainly off-panel. We see them preparing to fight... And then we switch to the Real World for a few months to cover the fights there. By the time we catch up in Hueco Mundo, Much of the battle has already taken place, with [[spoiler: Rukia]] the last one standing.
** [[spoiler: Yammy]] again this time he's fighting [[spoiler: Kenpachi and Byakuya]] then we switch to [[spoiler: Ichigo and Unohana]] on their way to Fake Karakura Town. Then after it's all over we see [[spoiler: Yammy]] defeated.
* ''Manga/OnePiece,'' Chapter "0:" [[spoiler: the fight between Admiral Sengoku and Vice-Admiral Garp versus Gold Lion Shiki that ended with the latter's defeat and half of Marineford in ruins. [[NoodleIncident Somehow,]] a ''full-sized ship'' got lodged into it.]]
* The end of the first arc of ''LightNovel/TheTwelveKingdoms''. It's spent something like twelve episodes building up to [[spoiler:Youko rescuing Keiki and claiming the throne]]- then skips over the entire [[spoiler:civil war]] in about 5 minutes. Sure, the series is meant to [[{{Shoujo}} focus more on character interactions]], but ''still''.
* ''Manga/MermaidMelodyPichiPichiPitch'' managed to have one minor example, being an anime that focuses on [[MagicalGirl magical girls]] who fight their opponents by singing. In one scene, Rina encounters a group of boys who want to give her a ride and seem to be thinking naughty thoughts. The scene then switches to a calm scene on the beach. Cut back to the car scene to see the boys knocked out with Rina dusting off her hands.
* In ''Manga/NabariNoOu'', the [[spoiler:Raimei/Raikou vs. Kouichi/Shijima]] fight is mostly off-panel for a practical reason: the fight lasts for several hours. On top of that, [[spoiler:Kouichi and Shijima]] are [[{{Immortality}} immortal]], so it's a ForegoneConclusion that [[spoiler:Raimei and Raikou]] [[HonorBeforeReason are going to lose]].
* In ''Manga/FairyTail'', Erza Scarlet vs. [[spoiler:Erza]] Knightwalker Round One was this.
* ''Manga/MyBrideIsAMermaid'' parodies this: During the war between Sun and Lunar's fan clubs, Nagasumi's "epic fight scene" is animated entirely with ''incredibly'' half-assed stick figures. The other characters treat it as if it's mindblowingly awesome.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* In ''ComicBook/FiftyTwo'', there's a beautiful example of this. Comicbook/LexLuthor has been provoking Comicbook/{{Steel}} for months -- at the moment, Steel's niece is his hostage -- and has often crossed the MoralEventHorizon for reasons related to his "Everyman" project, which has culminated in Luthor gaining [[FlyingBrick Superman's powers]]. Steel's armor has been destroyed, which leads to several pages of NoHoldsBarredBeatdown -- and Steel still gets back up, every single time. Fortunately, Natasha (the niece) [[FlawExploitation uses Luthor's paranoia]] and her own ingenuity against him, ultimately shutting down Luthor's powers. Luthor has an OhCrap moment, and then the next panel is a wide shot of the building, and the sounds of smackdown ''echoing'' across Metropolis. It is ''unspeakably'' [[SugarWiki/MomentOfAwesome satisfying]]. The creator commentary included in the trade paperback reveals that, originally, we were ''supposed'' to actually see the end of the fight, but the writers realized that nothing they could draw could possibly look as amazing as what the readers' own minds would fill in.
* In the "Grand Theft America" arc of ''ComicBook/TheUltimates'', Hawkeye has been captured and tortured in order to provide defensive codes allowing the Masters to attack New York City. After hours of torture he tears off his own fingernails and kills several guards by flicking them into their throats before threatening a scientist to let him go. After he's released a battalion charges in with him about to pick up an assault rifle. We cut to guards watching the carnage on security cameras before cutting back to reveal Hawkeye standing over a dozen dead soldiers holding two smoking rifles. His response to the security cameras? "Run."
* In ''Comicbook/StreetFighter'', one issue ends with Ryu accepting a challenge from "the greatest Kushti wrestler in all of India." We don't see the fight, but one can only imagine how it ended.
* In ''ComicBook/TheSmurfs'' comic book story "The Smurf Menace", Hefty gets into a fight with three Grey Smurfs who have stolen food from the Smurfs, and while only the two Smurfs following Hefty get to see the fight that we don't, we do get to see Hefty shaking his fist at the badly-wounded Grey Smurfs running back to their village.
** "Salad Smurfs" teases us with this, as in one panel Papa Smurf sees a cloudy skull wearing a Smurf-style chef's hat, indicating that the Smurfs were ganging up on and beating Chef Smurf to a pulp, protesting Chef's recent spell of bad cooking, but when Papa Smurf enters the kitchen, Chef Smurf looks like the only thing that was harmed was his pride.
* During Chris Claremont's run on the ''ComicBook/FantasticFour'', Sue Richards has to protect her time-displaced future daughter Valeria from Absorbing Man, Titania and a brainwashed Thing and ComicBook/SheHulk. We don't actually see the battle, just the reactions of Reed, Johnny, Valeria and ComicBook/SpiderMan (who happened to be in the neighborhood). Reed comments on Sue's "excellent synthesis of training and talent", Valeria gleefully shouts, "That's my mom!", Johnny cringes, "Oh, I can't look!" and Spider-Man murmers, "Never, never, never get this lady mad at me!" By the next page, Sue's the only one still standing.

* The climactic battle in the warehouse in ''Fanfic/WithStringsAttached'' consists of nothing but a paragraph of the sound effects of the battle. This is partially because the real struggle was for John and Ringo to get into the damn warehouse in the first place, so the final battle was deliberately anticlimactic (especially given [[CurbStompBattle how much the four outclassed their opponents]]), and partially because [[WordOfGod the author finds fight scenes really boring]] and wanted to do something different and short.
* ''Fanfic/DoingItRightThisTime'' describes the battle against the Third Angel mostly through Misato's worried but still kind of impressed reactions as Rei (who is, for [[PeggySue various]] [[FirstTimeFeeling reasons]], under a great deal of stress at the time) indulges in a bit of PercussiveTherapy.
* In ''Fanfic/ShadowchasersAscension'', Dante pulls a sting at a bar with the help of two tieflings - Debbie and Shaylene - catching the bartender in the act of selling a controlled substance. When the bartender sends two thugs after Dante, there's this dialogue between Dante's accomplices to the sound of a violent fight:
-->'''Dante:''' Don't those two goons know that Dante has a black belt in Karate?
-->'''Shaylene:''' I guess ''not''
* In ''FanFic/ThisBites'', whatever the hell happened to Spandam when Robin and Franky finally got their hands on him is never outright stated.
** Apparently Spandam's [[{{Squick}} ribs somehow ended up where his eyes are (or should be)]].
* In ''[[Fanfic/FacingTheFutureSeries A Family Thing]]'', Maddie gives Vlad [[spoiler:or rather a duplicate of him]] a NoHoldsBarredBeatdown as Jack and the others watch, with Jack providing commentary.
* ''WebVideo/ScootertrixTheAbridged:''
** [[FourthWallObserver Pinkie Pie]] interrupts the credits of Episode 5 to [[RageAgainstTheAuthor beat up The Editor]]. We don't see any of it, but just hear the sound effects.
** In "The Bird's Arch Nemesis", The Bird beats the snot out of Derpy--but only after they both fall into a pit, hiding their fight from our view. We hear the sounds of the fight, and Derpy's [[MajorInjuryUnderreaction surprisingly articulate descriptions of her injuries]] immediately after.

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* ''WesternAnimation/TheIncredibles'': Just before escaping Syndrome's base in a rocket, Mr. Incredible confronts a van full of Mooks. Cue an outside shot of the van rocking and shaking as he takes them out.
* ''WesternAnimation/HowToTrainYourDragon'': Happens in the last dragon training exercise. Despite [[BadassPacifist Hiccup's]] willingness to let Astrid win the exercise, by the time Astrid comes around to make her move, Hiccup has already incapacitated the dragon (and by his expression, probably by accident). Also used [[spoiler: the first time the Vikings try to take the dragons' nest.]]
* Creator/{{Pixar}} loves this one. usually involving a [[WesternAnimation/MonstersInc trailer]] or [[WesternAnimation/TheIncredibles truck]] of some kind.
* Ironically, in the Rankin-Bass ''animated WesternAnimation/TheReturnOfTheKing,'' even during epic battles, all violence is hidden: a human will fall out-of-frame to the left, and then an orc will enter the frame, and swing his axe in the direction of the (hidden) human.
* It also happens in the Rankin-Bass version of ''WesternAnimation/TheHobbit'' some examples include when Gandalf kills The Great Goblin you see him swing the sword and it cuts to the Great Goblin grabbing at his throat and falling into a tunnel, when Bilbo stabs the spiders you see closeups of their spinning faces, and during The Battle of Five Armies the only impacts shown are when an enemy is hit with a shield other than that they swing their weapons and it cuts to the enemy falling, and from a distance you see dots throwing spears and arrows at each other.
* A few big battles in the animated ''ComicBook/{{Asterix}}'' movies use the BigBallOfViolence to hide the brutality, filling the screen with dust and armour flying out (also odder things like false teeth and boxer shorts). During ''Asterix in Britain'', when Obelix is imprisoned in the "Tower of Londinium", we see him leave his cell [[OpenSaysMe in the fashion you'd expect]] of [[DoesNotKnowHisOwnStrength Obelix]], then we cut to outside the Tower, hearing the sounds of Obelix knocking the guards about (and occasionally one flying out the window) as he goes down. Once he's down, however, Asterix goes in the front, thinking Obelix is still in there, and it happens again, only this time, going up. They both then realize where the other is, and it happens ''[[RuleOfthree again]]'' until they meet in the middle.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* Part of the climax for ''Film/LetTheRightOneIn'': [[spoiler:Oskar is about to be drowned by the brother of the bully he beat up, his head held underwater. We only see it from under the pool, so we don't know what's happening at first, but it becomes apparent soon enough that Eli is killing the bullies when a ''severed head'' falls into the pool, followed swiftly by an arm.]]
* ''[=Fahrenheit 911=]'' didn't show any footage of the September 11th attacks, but instead showed a black screen while audio clips of the events were played, followed by reactions of people who saw it happen caught on (muted) video.
* {{Invoked|Trope}} in ''Film/SpyKids'': "Carmen, Juni, close your eyes! We don't want you to see this!"
* ''Film/FightClub'': The fight between the Narrator and Blondie. According to the [[DVDCommentary director's commentary]], the original version was more directly graphic, but the censors boohooed it. The result that made it into the cinematic version fit this trope. The change, arguably, led to a scene more horrible because it used this trope.
* ''Film/TheWarriors'': Near the end of the movie, Swan and Luther engage in a duel, which simply ends with Luther being stabbed in the hand with Swan's knife, dropping the gun. Then the Riffs show up, tell the Warriors they're off the hook, and surround Luther and The Rogues. An intense asskicking ensues, but the audience is not allowed to see it, as the camera instead pans to The Warriors walking along the beach...
* UsefulNotes/VietnamWar film ''84 Charlie [=MoPic=]'' is shot from the point of view of a cameraman attached to a army squad. (The title is his callsign.) At one point the squad calls down unseen artillery on unseen Vietcong, as the film didn't have the budget to show either of them.
* A short film named Woodshed is nothing but this: a static shot of a woodshed and the noises of a huge scuffle.
* ''Film/ScottPilgrimVsTheWorld'': While his stunt doubles kick the ever-loving crap out of Scott, Lucas Lee steps away from the fight to grab some coffee and check his text messages, [[SugarWiki/FunnyMoments which are apparently hilarious.]] Before he can sip his coffee, though...
-->'''Scott''': Mr. Lee! *camera pans back to Scott on his feet, all his stunt doubles defeated* [[PreAssKickingOneLiner You're needed back on set!]]
* ''Film/{{Predator 2}}'': King Willy, voodoo drug lord of L.A., squares off against the titular Predator. He draws his CaneSword as the cloaked Predator approaches, becoming more and more visible with every step...[[spoiler: and then it cuts to the Predator [[OffWithHisHead carrying his severed head off]]]].
* Large chunks of the battles between Franchise/{{Godzilla}} and the [=MUTOs=] in ''Film/{{Godzilla 2014}}'' take place just off-camera, with the shot following the humans caught in the middle.
* An interesting take on this trope in ''Film/GhostInTheShell2017''. A hit team is shown sneaking up behind Batou, who smiles and readies his weapon. Cut to Togusa who is ambushed by a similar hit team in a noodle bar, but [[ProperlyParanoid he has a mirror positioned to see anyone sneaking up behind him]] and so quickly dispatches the assassins. We then cut back to Batou driving away from his apartment, completely unharmed.
* The naval battle in the 2016 adaptation of ''Literature/BenHur'' takes place entirely from the restricted point-of-view of the protagonist who's chained up below deck as an oarsman.
* Parodied in ''Film/AsterixAndCleopatra''. At the start of the climactic battle, Obelix is seen charging at a group of Roman legionnaires. When the actual fight is about to start, the narrator intervenes, telling the audience that, instead of watching a violent battle, they instead should watch an educational documentary about crayfish, followed by actually showing a bit of said documentary.

* ''[[Literature/{{Redwall}} Rackety Tam]]'' has a small group of robbers occupying a family of farming voles' home. Then, TheLancer (and TheBigGuy) and the LightningBruiser come along and decide [[TrojanPrisoner to infiltrate the home as "hostages"]]. In an offscreen battle inside the home, from the POV of the vole family who have evacuated their children outside to keep them away from the fighting, the two protagonists manage to kill all the three or four robbers. According to the sounds inside, they fight them with kitchen utensils and their own weapons. In the end, the last of the robbers trundles out, gargles violently and dies as well.
* The Battle of the Whispering Wood in ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'' is told entirely from Catelyn Stark's perspective. She is somewhere close to the battle where she can hear it, but it was too dark for her to see.
* Creator/CSLewis was fond of this. The climactic battle in ''The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,'' which the filmmakers took as an excuse to do the epic thing, is recounted second hand in the book, and the duel between Peter and Miraz in ''Prince Caspian'' is told by being described by a spectator to a short-sighted companion.
* In ''[[Literature/TheChroniclesOfPrydain The Book of Three]]'', Taran is briefly involved in the initial part of the final battle before being knocked out by trying to draw the magic sword Dyrnwyn. The rest of the battle is recounted to him by his companions after he wakes up in the high king's castle. Definitely used for CharacterDevelopment in the next five books as he becomes more and more centrally involved in the conflict.
* In ''Literature/{{Twilight}}'', Bella faints right when the [[BigDamnHeroes Big Damn Cullens]] arrive and misses them killing James.
* Appears in ''Literature/TheHobbit'', when Bilbo faints during the Battle of the [[FiveRaces Five Armies.]]
* A lot of the historical events in ''Literature/TimeCat'' are known to have ended less than peaceably, and the protagonists conveniently skip out of time for a lot of them.
* In ''[[Literature/MythAdventures MYTH Inc. Link]]'', Tananda, determined to complete an assignment herself, forbids Chumley from coming into a bar where she's trying to get information. Chumley shrugs, stays outside, and entertains himself by analyzing the sounds of the subsequent BarBrawl:
-->That was a table going over... Another chair... A mirror (wonder how she missed the glasses?)...
* ''Literature/{{Dune}}'': Great battles take place but for the most part they are only alluded to in dialogue. The movie takes the opposite approach.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'':
** We never see how Glory kills the knights trying to kill Dawn in Season 5.
** Buffy's first fight against the Trio in Season 6, as they're all invisible.
* ''Series/TerminatorTheSarahConnorChronicles'':
** The big battle between the FBI and [[spoiler:Cromartie]] at the end of Season 1 to the tune of Johnny Cash's "The Man Comes Around." [[spoiler:Cromartie slaughters everybody except Agent Ellison, but we only see things from underwater, as bodies come crashing down in the pool one by one.]] ''And a voice spoke and said, "Come and see," [[DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment and I saw]]. And behold, [[IncendiaryExponent a flaming horse]], [[SugarWiki/MomentOfAwesome and him that was on it was Awesome, and Sweet followed after him]].''
** Then subverted in the second-season episode "Mr. Ferguson Is Ill Today". Cromartie's fight with the Mexican police is initially experienced through sound only through Sarah's point of view, as she's locked in the trunk of his car, but then in Cromartie's own p-o-v section we see it in full.
* Done repeatedly in ''Series/{{Rome}}''. The series includes several major battles of the early Roman Empire, but only once (Phillipi) actually showed huge groups of soldiers fighting each other. For example, Caesar's campaign against Magnus is represented with a few screaming soldiers and a Roman standard falling into a puddle. That's about five years of warfare, right there.
* ''Series/{{Heroes}}'' has season one's big showdown between Future Peter and Sylar - colorful lights busting through the door Mohinder's holding shut.
** Also season three's big showdown had the Petrelli brothers facing off against Sylar at his absolute strongest. All we saw was colorful lights and Claire's eye peaking through the door. The fandom was a bit less forgiving this time.
* During the first fight of ''Series/PowerRangersRPM'' (between Dillon and some Mooks), the camera stays focused on [[HopeSproutsEternal a lone flower]], which Dillon had watered just beforehand and is probably the only thing still living in the wastes.
* In the ''Series/StargateSG1'' episode "Upgrades", O'Neill, Carter, and Daniel get into a BarBrawl while wearing the Atoniek armbands (which make them way faster and stronger, among other things). After O'Neill opens the fight by flipping a guy upside down one-handed, the camera cuts to the bar's exterior whereupon you hear a series of loud smacks, thuds, and shattering glass.
* A running gag on ''Series/PersonOfInterest'' is of them abbreviating a fight scene to only the part where the villain goes flying out of a window.
* ''Series/BabylonFive'':
** The episode "Believers" has Ivanova and a MauveShirt go out in Starfuries to escort a damaged passenger liner to the station. Ivanova pursues and destroys a Raider ship, then cue OhCrap as dozens more appear on her sensors, and ... cut back to the episode's main plot on the station. At the end of the episode she and the liner turn up at the station with enough damage to her fighter to put it in the shop for a week, and she basically laughs it off.
** In another episode, Marcus threatens [[BadGuyBar an entire bar]] with an ass-whooping unless someone tells him what he wants to know. It then cuts to commercial and, on return, we see Marcus knocking out the last guy standing, before lamenting that he now has to wait for one of his opponents to regain consciousness for questioning.
* A more mild example from ''Series/BattlestarGalactica2003'' when Starbuck's fighter malfunctions right before the first big battle and she listens to the first half of it over the radio before she can finish repairs and launch.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** In the William Hartnell-era serial "The Reign of Terror", the Doctor convinces the leader of the [[PressGanged press gang he's in]] that they're digging up gold coins. While the man scrabbles on the floor, back turned to the Doctor, the Doctor slowly takes a shovel from another of the gang members and readies it. We cut to the face of the man whose shovel the Doctor took as he looks on in confusion, before suddenly wincing in sympathetic agony. This was probably done because having the Doctor kill someone with a spade on screen would not be possible to [[PlayedForLaughs Play For Laughs]] - he's allowed to kill people on screen at dramatic moments, though.
** In "[[Recap/DoctorWhoS17E4NightmareOfEden The Nightmare of Eden]]", the Doctor being attacked by the Mandrels after he lures them back into their pocket universe is represented by comedy offscreen sound effects and branches shaking. The sequence remains a major bone of contention among fans who think that Season Seventeen in general was too comical.
* ''Series/GameOfThrones'':
** PlayedForLaughs when the Battle of the Green Fork is skipped. Tyrion gives a pre-battle speech to his mountain clansmen, then gets promptly knocked unconscious when they charge right over him. He wakes up after the battle and receives a summary from Bronn.
** Given the immense size of the wildling army, the battle against them in "The Children" counts as one.
* In ''Series/{{Fargo}}'', Lorne Malvo [[spoiler:machine-guns the entire Fargo mob]], but all we see of it is [[spoiler:one man being thrown through a window to the sidewalk below]]. The rest is simply the camera moving up and over the side of the building from the door Malvo enters, following the [[SoundOnlyDeath shots and screams]] past rows of mirrored windows.
* There's a very similar example as a rare moment of comic relief in the otherwise wrenching second season finale of ''Series/RobinOfSherwood''. When the soldiers arrest Little John, the struggling men go into a building, and we then have a pan along the side of the building with comedy fight sound effects until they all burst out of the back door.
* In ''Series/OrphanBlack'', [[ButtMonkey Donnie]] and [[DarkActionGirl Helena]] (disguised as Donnie's wife Alison) have a nasty confrontation with some gangsters. Helena pushes him out of the building and slams the door, then emerges a few minutes later soaked in the gangsters' blood.
* Done when the Borg CurbStomp Admiral Hanson's fleet in the ''Series/StarTrek:TheNextGeneration'' episode "The Best of Both Worlds." Thanks to lack of budget, the big battle scene turned into the ''Enterprise'' flying through the post-facto debris field. However the pilot episode of ''Series/StarTrek:DeepSpaceNine'' revisited the battle as a flashback.

[[folder:Newspaper Comics]]
* One ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes'' strip had Calvin sledding down a particularly treacherous hill. Instead of seeing him crash, we see Hobbes standing at the top of the hill, watching and reacting (at one point he looks ''up'').

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* A common backstage element in Wrestling Promotions is for a wrestler to be backstage, either looking for someone or just walking around, and will enter a room or round a corner out of the camera's sight. The camera will stop following, or the scene will cut away for a while, but when the camera cuts back or follows after the sound of a struggle is heard, the camera will get there just in time to find a badly beaten wrestler laying on the ground, but no immediate sign of who applied the beating.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* The above mentioned ProfessionalWrestling element is used in ''[[Videogame/WWEVideoGames WWF Smackdown 2: Know Your Role]]'', particularly when "Unknown Wrestlers" (which unlock custom character parts when defeated) make an appearance.
* The ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' video ''Meet the Sandvich'' takes place entirely inside a refrigerator with the camera pointing at the eponymous Sandvich. The beauty is in the sounds of the battle - first the Heavy chows down on his sandvich with an almost-adorable "OM NOM NOM" noise, then come some sickening cracks and the Scout's screams of "MY BLOOD! HE PUNCHED OUT ''ALL'' MY BLOOD!" {{Hilarity ensue|s}}d.
* In ''VideoGame/MegaManX'', right before the rematch with Vile, Zero goes in first, and the player merely hears battle noises for a few moments before they regain control of X.
* ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryReturns'' starts off with a bang using one of these. After the two-minute intro cutscene, the first level begins with you vigorously shaking the Wiimote to make DK pound on Kalimba, which is shown from outside the (very bouncy) hut. [[note]][[CatharsisFactor You can even do it again by entering the level over and over.]][[/note]]
* Used a couple times in the ''VideoGame/MonkeyIsland'' series; once in the governor's mansion in ''VideoGame/TheSecretOfMonkeyIsland'' and then in Club 41 in the first episode of ''VideoGame/TalesOfMonkeyIsland''. The latter is one of those "creators didn't have the resources" versions; in a game commentary they explain that showing the inside of Club 41 would have put them over the Wii's file size limit.
* Played for laughs in Samara's loyalty mission in ''VideoGame/MassEffect2''. In the nightclub VIP room, a slightly drunk turian won't take no for an answer from an asari stripper. If Shepard tells him to lay off, the turian will pick a fight with him/her. Shepard and the turian move off-camera so only the asari is visible, whereupon there's a string of blows-landing sounds with accompanying winces from the asari, then the turian goes flying past the camera. Bonus points if it's [=FemShep=] wearing the LittleBlackDress from Kasumi's loyalty mission. Especially given the dialogue for the scene if you're playing Female Shepard. ([[http://youtu.be/qRST6c41N3Q Watch it here.]])
-->'''Female Shepard:''' The lady asked you to step away.\\
'''Drunken Turian:''' You want in on this transaction? I don't care if it's you or this bitch -- I just like good times!\\
[''Drunken Turian moves in on Shepard and gets his ass royally kicked'']\\
'''Female Shepard:''' Good times are over.
* ''VideoGame/StarTrekOnline'', episode "Wasteland", mission "A Fistful of Gorn". Old Romulan named Law challenges a Gorn pirate gunning for the PlayerCharacter's head to a ShowdownAtHighNoon. They square off, and the camera cuts to the town sign as they draw and fire. Next camera has Law walk up to you and shrug.
* PlayedForLaughs atop the Temple of Light in ''VideoGame/SandsOfDestruction''. Morte beats and berates Kyrie for [[spoiler:deciding to die so that the world - and, more importantly to him, ''she'' - couldn't be destroyed]], but the camera just cuts to a ReactionShot from the rest of the team. They consider him lucky that she didn't pull her {{BFS}}.

* ''Webcomic/TowerOfGod'': Kang Horyang's CurbStompBattle against Rapdevil is replaced with a shot of the door of the room they are in. Considering the outcome, it was a GoryDiscretionShot as well.
* ''Webcomic/EightBitTheater'' loves this trope. For every battle that's shown on panel, there are at least two whose effects are only observed by the other characters or implied via speech bubbles, sound effects, or [[GoryDiscretionShot rivers of blood]] from offpanel. The crowning moment, however, is in the FinalBattle with Chaos where this is used twice -- first when it actually happens and again, in a DoubleSubversion, in {{flashback}}. The latter also counts as an intentional OffscreenMomentOfAwesome.
* In ''Webcomic/TheAdventuresOfDrMcNinja'', Doc [[ItMakesSenseInContext is retrieving a missile from a robot alligator submarine]] when a park warden catches him. The next page of the comic simply contains the words: HE IS A NINJA and then cuts to Doc driving the warden's car to his destination.
* In ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'', [[TechnicalPacifist Grace plays a fighting game]] during her birthday party while Ellen watches. [[http://www.egscomics.com/?date=2005-06-02 At one point]], Ellen is actually shocked by what she sees even though its stated to be only cartoon violence.
* Parodied in [[http://mspaintadventures.com/?s=6&p=006811 this scene]] of ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'', wherein we cut away from Jack Noir killing a regulator to [[RelaxOVision a Pawn that Jack Noir killed previously using a knife]]. And then we cut back (too early) to see that Jack Noir [[{{Gorn}} isn't actually finished killing the regulator, let alone cleaning up the copious amounts of blood.]]
-->"''[[{{Narrator}} You]] [[RunningGag stop being the other guy]] in time for us to see that you have just finished [[BlatantLies quickly and cleanly]] [[TapOnTheHead subduing]] the...''"
-->"''Jack, [[ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill the man is dead.]] [[DisproportionateRetribution Stop that.]]''"
* In ''Webcomic/BobAndGeorge'', [[http://www.bobandgeorge.com/archives/001125c between Protoman and his impostor.]]
* ''Webcomic/{{Waterworks}}'': [[http://www.mspfanventures.com/?s=43&p=413 Tubs beating up some workers]] is shown as just flashing lights beyond some doors, with a ScreenShake (Tubs's appearance not yet being revealed at this point.)

[[folder: Western Animation ]]
* In the ''WesternAnimation/TomAndJerry'' short "WesternAnimation/MouseTrouble", Tom pounces on Jerry while the latter is backed into a corner, on the advice from his new mouse-catching guide that "A cornered mouse ''never'' fights". There's sounds of a violent scuffle, then a battered and bruised Tom sticks his head out and says, in an ominous voice, "Don't you believe it!"
* Lampshaded in the ''WesternAnimation/{{Animaniacs}}'' episode "Bully for Slappy." After being warned to tone down the level of violence in her cartoons by the US government, Slappy Squirrel spends the rest of the episode building a strange machine while Skippy deals with [[TheBully a school bully]]. Once the machine is finished, Slappy feeds the bully AND a senator into the machine, explaining that this machine helps eliminate the viewing of violence on screen, by [[ExactWords allowing all the violence to happen OFF screen.]]
* The Yakuza/Springfield Mafia fight in ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' takes place mostly from the view of the Kitchen. Homer is then rather bummed out that he's missing out on all the good action.
** Especially since "The Little Guy hasn't done anything yet, and you know when he does, it's gonna to be good"
** "Kiyaa!" * thud* * thud* * thud* "Aww!"
*** (Little Guy crashes through the window) "[[JapanesePoliteness Forgiveness, please!]]"
* Happens a lot in cartoons to get around the MoralGuardians. You'll see stars and planets shooting into frame from offscreen and you get to see the onlookers wincing reactions.
* [[WesternAnimation/TheGrimAdventuresOfBillyAndMandy Billy and Mandy]] pulled this in the episode "Here There Be Dwarves". As an epic showdown between [[ItMakesSenseInContext mushroom-mining dwarfs and cookie-baking elves is about to take place,]] Creator/RLeeErmey himself pops up on screen, telling viewers that the fight "is inappropriate for our younger viewers." [[RelaxOVision We are then treated to around 45 seconds of a baby koala licking a eucalyptus leaf]] before Ermey brings us back with his signature "Carry on!"
* ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' "My god! This battle is epic! This is even more epic than the final battle in the ''Film/LordOfTheRings'' movie, this is like [[TakeOurWordForIt ten times more epic than that battle!]]"
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Freakazoid}}'' went a step or two further with RelaxOVision. Can't have the kiddies see you beating up Ben Stein? RelaxOVision!
* Used as a RunningGag in ''WesternAnimation/RoadRovers'', where Muzzle is unleashed on the villains and we cut to the others' reactions to the [[GoryDiscretionShot carnage]].
* In the ongoing ''WesternAnimation/{{Hercules}}'' series this tended to happen whenever Hades pissed off another of the Olympian gods. He'd try - vainly - to apologize to his angry contemporary, then the screen would shift to the main cast, watching - with horror, amusement, or a combination of the two - a rather violent offscreen fight that was clearly one-sided against Hades.
* ''WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes'': Happens near the climatic end of the Bugs Bunny short "Knights Must Fall".
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' has [[CloudCuckoolander Pinkie Pie's]] attempt to persuade the dragon in "Dragonshy".
--> '''Pinkie Pie:''' ''(enters dragon cave in a silly outfit)'' Sharing a laugh is a surefire way to get someone on your side. \\
'''Pinkie Pie:''' ''(to dragon while offscreen)'' Hi! \\
''(cue sounds of offscreen beating)'' \\
'''Pinkie Pie:''' ''(exits dragon cave in a busted silly outfit)'' Apparently, he doesn't like laughing. Or sharing...
* Happens a lot in cartoons made by ''Xilam'', such as ''WesternAnimation/OggyAndTheCockroaches'' and ''WesternAnimation/SpaceGoofs'', where characters are [[NoHoldsBarredBeatdown beaten senseless]] off screen. Although we do get to see the [[AmusingInjuries results]].
* ''WesternAnimation/TransformersRescueBots'' features one of these when the titular Bots finally manage to confront the [[EvilCounterpart MorBot]] in combat at the end of "The Reign of Morocco". It may double as a robotic form of GoryDiscretionShot, as the resulting rain of robot parts implies that what they did was rather brutal.
--> '''Chase:''' [=MorBot=] ''decommissioned''.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/EarthwormJim'' episode "The Eggbeater" Jim and Peter Puppy are about to engage Queen Slugforabutt's army of undefeatable Zergs, when suddenly a female news anchor announces that as a result of skyrocketing costs they are cutting the budget for action sequences in cartoons and are going for a cheap substitute, we then cut to Jim putting away his laser gun saying what a spectacular battle it was and that they barely escaped with their lives.
* Happens a lot in ''WesternAnimation/CodenameKidsNextDoor'', especially when one of the heroes beats up several adult enemies, something that is hard to show realistically. One good example is the end credits which occur right after the end of "Operation: F.L.U.S.H.", right after the team closes in on the Toilenator; the viewers see the Treehouse and hear a violent fight from within, until finally, there's a loud flushing noise and the badly bruised villain is dumped out a drainpipe.
* Happened off-scene at the end of ''WesternAnimation/TheAdventuresOfJimmyNeutronBoyGenius'' episode ''The Feud'', [[RememberedTooLate when Sheen realizes]] he forgot to mention [[NowYouTellMe that Sam had Hugh's lawn lopper the whole time]], [[CouldHaveAvoidedThisPlot which started the titular feud in the first place]]. Disgusted, both the Neutrons and Wheezers get ready to beat him up before it irises out.
* On ''WesternAnimation/RogerRamjet'', Roger will take a proton pill (giving him the strength of twenty atom bombs for twenty seconds) and deliver a NoHoldsBarredBeatdown on his enemies, which is covered up by [[WrittenSoundEffect sound effects title cards]].
* ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsCloneWars'' normally didn't shy away from showing violence, but used this trope to make General Grievous's fight with Palpatine's clone guards [[NothingIsScarier worse by implication]]. We see several shots of Grievous utterly pummeling some of the guards in the office, then the three Jedi grab Palpatine and flee into the hallway. The camera stays in the hallway, and the sounds of continued carnage from Palpatine's office are loud and clear, while the Jedi and Palpatine wait for the elevator to take them away.
--> ''[[WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries It is implied that I am hitting you!]]''