"The balloons hail a great night for... all of us."Many game shows throw over-the-top celebrations for their big winners. Often the hapless contestant is showered with confetti, balloons, the cash they just won, etc. and a couple of examples leave you wondering if they're going to burn the studio down. Seen on quite a few game shows in The '70s and The '80s, but became a staple of the multi-million dollar game shows and large-scale talent search shows of The Aughties.
— Jim Perry, Sale of the Century
Game Show Examples:
- (The New) Treasure Hunt, one of the earliest examples of its use on a game show. Originally just dropped confetti and balloons after a $25,000 win; in later 1970's episodes the contestant was further assaulted with roses by the show's models.
- This was carried out to such an extreme on Jim Lange's version of Name That Tune that the viewer could not see half of what was going on onstage, and some contestants had trouble wading through the balloons to get to the car they had won.
- The Big Moment - Streamers and confetti were launched any time the $25,000 was won (and also for a $5,000 audience stunt win in later episodes).
- BOOM! - Money is shot from the floor whenever the Mega Money Bomb is successfully defused.
- Bozo's Grand Prize Game - Confetti and balloons fall onto contestants who win the grand prize.
- Break the Bank (1985) - Any time the bank was broken.
- The $1,000,000 Chance of a Lifetime - not only did they drop tons of confetti (and balloons in the second season), they shot fireworks off in the studio on a couple of early episodes.
- Deal or No Deal - Any time the top prize is won. In the US, confetti and money are released; other versions including the UK just use confetti.
- Double Dare 2000 had a variant: the confetti was launched when the Triple Dare Challenge was accepted.
- Duel shot off a circle of pyrotechnic sparks surrounding the arena for a jackpot win. This was changed to confetti and streamers in the second season of the US version.
- Family Feud - Balloons are generally released for tournament wins, a practice that began with the Combs version.
- The Gong Show - a midget wearing a tuxedo would run around the contestants, throwing confetti from a bucket while balloons fell from the ceiling. Later episodes featured trash and other random items being dropped.
- The Hollywood Squares - Balloons were dropped when a car was won on the Davidson version; several different ones were used on Bergeron's.
- Let's Make a Deal - If the Super Deal is won on the Brady version, money falls from the ceiling. A couple of Big Deal wins on the short-lived 1991 version were accompanied by balloons being dropped on the car.
- Match Game: Balloons were dropped not for a win, but at the end of every New Year's Eve episode as they changed out the sign indicating the year.
- Make The Grade - Any time the Honors Round was won during the Robb Edward Morris era.
- The Price Is Right - when someone wins $1,000,000 on the prime time specials or $100,000 on Pay the Rent. During Dream Car Week, streamers are fired when one of the Dream Cars is won. Balloons were also released at the end of the 35th season premiere (which, coincidentally, ended with a contestant winning both Showcases and setting the then-current winnings record for the daytime version.)
- Press Your Luck - On the final day of the last Home Participation Sweepstakes, the names of all eligible participants that had come up during that contest were entered into a final drawing, the winner of which would receive a cash prize based on one final spin by the champion. After the champion won $36,000 for the home viewer (a $2,000 spin multiplied by 18 spins earned in round 2), balloons and streamers were released in the studio.
- Remote Control - Bonus Round winners were showered with confetti and streamers while still strapped to the bed or wheel.
- Sale of the Century anytime the lot was won or a contestant won (or left with) a sizable prize in the end game.
- Trashed - confetti was blown by "The Trasher" through a modified leafblower after a bonus win; later subverted when he started blowing trash through it instead.
- 21 - whenever a contestant's winnings passed the $1,000,000 mark in the Povich version.
- Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego? has something of a subversion: confetti would fall at the end of the second round, rather than the bonus round, when the crook of the day was arrested.
Rockapella: YOU WON! BA-DA DA-DA-DA-DAAAAAAAAAA-DA-DAAAAAAAAAAAAA!
- Wheel of Fortune - when someone wins $100,000 or $1,000,000 in the bonus round. Frequently lampshaded by Pat Sajak, even wielding a push broom on occasion in case it happens.
- Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, Greed, and countless others in the "big-money game show craze" that awarded a (multi-) million dollar payout. Averted in 1 vs. 100.
- Win Ben Stein's Money - money falls from the ceiling when a contestant beats Ben.
Non-Game Show Examples:
open/close all folders
- A fictional game show example happens in Slumdog Millionaire.
Live Action TV
- America's Funniest Home Videos drops confetti on the $100,000 winner each season (balloons in the Saget era).
- American Idol unleashes a snowstorm of confetti at the end of the finale as the winner performs.
- Many, many New Year's Eve celebrations, both on television and in Real Life. Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve is no exception, though the 2012-13 edition has a notable Tear Jerker example: In the months following Clark's death in April 2012, the city asked its citizens to write their memories of him and his New Year's specials. These little reminiscences went on display until they were combined with a healthy helping of Manly Tears and used as confetti to ring in 2013... The man got to celebrate one last time.
- Frequent, and sometimes parodied on The Colbert Report.
- Parodied on Whose Line Is It Anyway?: Balloons dropped from the top of the set when Colin won the show's millionth point.
- Done on Dexter in "Born Free" (season 1 finale). Dexter has a rather long Imagine Spot when he sees himself appreciated by people who are fans of his work as a Serial Killer who takes out the trash, hunting down criminals. People scream their supporting words and they even have banners with "I'm your #1 fan" and similar stuff. The celebrity worship and party-like feeling is complete with the Confetti Drop.
- Faking It: Confetti drops as Amy and Karma kiss to prove they're not fake lesbians. Their rival Lauren is understandably perturbed at this; Principal Penelope simply replies, "It dropped early, I'm so sorry."
- The Joe Schmo Show, a fake game show that was really a Truman Show Plot in which all but one contestant were actors, always ended this way, with another contestant "winning" and the truth being revealed to the Schmo immediately thereafter.
- The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade uses confetti cannons at the beginning and the end of the parade, alongside the more stirring production numbers (e.g. LeAnn Rimes' "Remember When" from the 2005 parade).
- Square One TV used one for one of its several game show segments, "Piece of the Pie", a Family Feud-esque game based on percentages of survey results.
- Star Trek: Voyager. The episode "Timeless" opens with Voyager crashed and buried on an ice planet. A How We Got Here flashback then shows Chief Engineer B'Elanna Torres being showed in confetti by crewmen on the upper decks of Engineering for the Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony of the new quantum slipstream drive that will take them all the way back to Earth.
- Every Super Bowl launches confetti at the final gun; usually red, white and blue rather than the winning team's colors, because it's easier to manage one set rather than two, and—more importantly—not get those two mixed up.
- This has extended to the end of nearly every single major college or professional championship game in any sport, if the winning team is at home or a neutral site.
- A hilarious early confetti drop happened in the 1999 WNBA finals Game 2 (of 3). The Houston Comets won the first game and led the New York Liberty by 2 at home with 2.4 seconds left. The Liberty inbounded to Teresa Weatherspoon in the back court, and the confetti started to fall as Weatherspoon launched a desperation shot at half-court—and made it, thus ruining the confetti drop.
- A few Cirque du Soleil shows have confetti drops over the stage and audience as part of the finale: Varekai, Zumanity, and The Beatles LOVE. LOVE also opens with a confetti drop, which makes sense when one realizes that the story begins with "Get Back", which The Beatles performed in their final public concert.
- Spamalot's curtain call singalong to "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" ended with a confetti drop over the crowd.
- In the adaptation to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, the Childcatcher's demise is signaled by a confetti drop over the crowd. And then there's another more festive one during the curtain call.
- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory does this twice over. The first time, it's played for Black Comedy — the purple glitter that's showered over the balconies and upper stalls is the fallout from Violet Beauregarde (who wears a sparkly tracksuit) exploding after her transformation into a giant blueberry. The second time, it's purely festive as confetti cannons are shot off over the stage and front rows to celebrate Charlie Bucket's triumph.
- WarioWare DIY allows a user-made microgame to include a confetti drop as a predefined Stage Effect.
- In the Ace Attorney games, the courtroom audience appears to drop confetti after the player wins a case.
- Done by Maya Fey in Ultimate Marvel Vs Capcom 3 during Phoenix Wright's winpose.
- Hidden in the back of the manual for the second DS game is a brief comic strip that lampshades the confetti drop. It turns out that it's not the entire audience throwing confetti; it's just Detective Gumshoe, celebrating Phoenix's success in the only way he can afford - laboriously cut up bits of paper.
- Parodied in Portal 2. For several test chambers GLaDOS has been threatening- er, I mean, playfully teasing that she has a big surprise for your birthday. The player, expecting the worst is treated to....a rather anti-climatic bit of confetti falling.
- If you "use" confetti in Kingdom of Loathing, your character throws it in the air for him/herself, and then picks it back up (no need to litter!). Multi-using eleven confetti handfuls earns you the "I Love A Parade" trophy.
- Completing a mission in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Gates to Infinity results in the screen being filled with falling confetti.
- In Undertale, your first encounter with Mettaton involves him summoning a rain of confetti as he selects you to be a contestant in his Deadly Game.
- Tickertape Parades, which are usually held downtown in the city of a person or group that is being honored, such as a major sports team that has won a national championship.