In real life, concussions have a number of unpleasant symptoms. These include, but are not limited to headache, nausea, and dizziness. They also involve minor brain damage in addition to those. Fortunately for our protagonist, this is fiction. Here, if one gets a Tap on the Head
or a particularly violent Dope Slap
, one need only worry about sporting a dopey grin and falling over, or, at worst, experiencing a Non Sequitur Thud
. In fact, the effects of slapstick
concussion look alarmingly like the effects of euphoric drugs.
(Don't worry about after-effects, either - any Circling Birdies
can be dismissed with a quick shake of the head, and a Cranial Eruption
can often be pushed straight back in. And multiple head injuries will never make the problem worse
Naturally, depending on the work, this falls under either Artistic License
, Acceptable Breaks from Reality
, or, if the writers are truly dense, Critical Research Failure
though, there can be a grain of Truth in Television
in it - someone acting mildly drunk after taking a blow to the head is a good indicator of concussion, and they should probably see a doctor.
Related to Hard Head
, Tap on the Head
, Non Sequitur Thud
- More literal than most examples: in MAD #116 (January 1968) the Don Martin cartoon "A San Francisco Trip" shows a hippie preparing some banana peel shavings in a frying pan, and trying to smoke the result in a pipe. Nothing happens. He angrily stalks away — immediately slipping on the peel he cast aside earlier. He bashes his head (KLANG), and is left sitting on the floor seeing paisley-styled hallucinations. Also references the then-current legend of bananadine.
- Regardless of whether it's Roman legionaries, Proto-Germanic kuningōz, turncoat Gauls, or what have you, any Astérix character on the receiving end of a blow to the head or a potion-enhanced Megaton Punch will be punch-drunk for a while.
- The Lion King Adventures features many slapstick moments, almost always resulting in one of the cubs getting a goofy smile and a dazed expression on their face.
- Sore ga Ai, Deshou?: Averted; after Mai whacks him over the head during their first informal meeting, Andy is left dazed and is warned not to fall asleep or he might die.
- The "don't fall asleep part" is a common misunderstanding with concussion victims—sleeping is perfectly fine if you're tired and in a safe place. The problem is if you don't wake up (someone needs to wake the victim up about once or twice to make sure they aren't in a coma) or if you aren't acting normal/coherent upon waking, at which the person needs to go to the hospital for potential brain damage.
- Hunting The Unicorn averts this. Blaine gets a concussion from a moderate fall in a fight before he gets kidnapped by his Stalker with a Crush, rambles about nonsense for half an hour, and runs off in a panic which extends the police search for him. He degenerates into having headaches that he can't communicate about properly, getting nauseous, and in the chapter The Red Bull, he's making no sense to anyone. He tries to reason with his stalker, and instead watches Kurt nearly get choked out. Considering this took place over the later half of a day, which is stressful for uninjured people, it's pretty understandable that he starts crying when the paramedics finally load him up.
- The Three Stooges would often use this, by having whoever was hit on the head take on a silly facial expression and slump over to the sound of chirping birds.
- In the Chinese film Kung Fu Genius, one of the Big Bad's lackeys takes too many hits to the head in one fight, and instantly becomes a child-like Ju Cloud Cuckoolander for the rest of the movie.
- In the Boy Meets World Episode "Easy Street" Eric gives himself a concussion trying to escape from a car that was buried in the snow. Upon recovering Eric is loopy, cheerful and generally appears pleasantly intoxicated.
- On The Office, jerkass Dwight starts acting uncharacteristically nice after crashing his car. The others eventually realize that he has a concussion and take him to the hospital. During this bout of identity amnesia Dwight also shows absentmindedness and compulsive behavior not unlike fictional portrayals of being high on marijuana.
- In the Young Blades episode "Rub-a-Dub Sub," a character gets an anchor dropped on his head. The episode tag features him in a dungeon, delirious and spouting random nonsense.
- On Days of Our Lives Nick Fallon was concussed while disposing of a bomb. This induced a euphoric state, during which he flew to Las Vegas and married a hooker named China Lee.
- In one episode of LazyTown, Hulk Hogan hits the "evil dude" in the head, which causes him to talk gibberish.
- In a blink and you'll miss it moment from the TGWTG brawl, The Nostalgia Chick wakes up from a guitar blow to the head and openly flirts with the Critic by making the "call me" signal. Luckily for her, he's too wrapped up in the Nerd.
- In the Disney short Clock Cleaners, Goofy gets hit on the head while on a tall building, and wanders onto a construction site afterward, completely entranced.
- In the Chip 'n Dale short "Working For Peanuts", Donald Duck chases the two chipmunks until slamming his head into a wall after they escape through a hole. He then sits there with swirly eyes and a toothy grin on his face; later on in the short the elephant he was taking care of finds him still like this.
- A similar one happens in the short "Dragon Around" where Donald Duck is building a road and the chipmunks' tree is in the way, so he has to get rid of it. When his crane (which the chipmunks think is a dragon) gets damaged so that the shovel's teeth are removed so it can no longer dig, he resorts to try ramming the tree with it, only for the chipmunks to loosen all the screws/bolts/nuts, so as Donald is charging towards the tree, his crane falls a part leaving only him charging towards the tree, then hitting his head on it, leaving him dazed. Dale then imitates Donald after finding it funny.
- A Sealab2021 episode had the crew trapped in a malfunctioning storage closet. Beard Guy comes in to fix the problem, but Captain Murphy beats his head in. Upon briefly regaining consciousness, he displays this trope.
Beard Guy: I got my think a concussion. Now must remember not fix stuff. Gonna lay down back, cuz our concussion have us sleepy.
Debbie: Uh, should Beard Guy be asleep with a concussion?
Quinn: No, absolutely not.
- An episode of Ren and Stimpy features Stimpy excusing himself because "It's time for my appointment". He walks over to a door in the wall, inserts a quarter, and the door lifts to reveal a horse. The horse kicks him in the head, sending him flying. His reaction to this is almost orgasmic.
- A noticeable aversion from Ozzy and Drix. When Hector takes a nasty spill off his bike, he displays actual symptoms of a concussion. Noticeably, intense dizziness, and confusion.
- In The Smurfs episode "Pappy's Puppy Prescription", Gargamel gets a bit loopy after he collides with a tree that he couldn't see when he was using a pair of special goggles that can only see blue in order to find Smurfs.
- Daffy Duck gets rather loopy near the end of Duck Amuck, reciting "The Village Blacksmith" while banging a hammer on an anvil that the artist's pencil changes into a bomb.