23rd Oct: It's time for the second TV Tropes Halloween Avatar Contest, theme: cute monsters! Details and voting here.
"Let's cut to the commercial break like a news show. (ominous voice) Something in your house may kill you. Find out what—after the break."Picture this: it's nearing Prime Time and you're ready to watch your favorite programs when suddenly, a brief bumper appears. It's a five-to-ten second plug for the station's news program at Eleven that aims to grab viewers with the following: "Do recent studies show how the show you're watching can set your entire neighborhood ablaze? Find out after the show." For all of its portrayals, and even Real Life inspirations, this comes across as an utter tease. The subject in question is shrouded in an air of cheap mystique, said mystique being a fear-striking tool to entice viewers that the very news source you just barely witnessed holds the absolute, divine truth on the matter. Additionally, those ratings are most likely accrued in the most gruesome method possible: sometimes even with a fippant plug to the program presented before or after the Prime Time block. Chances are very good that, unless those studies and stations have Shown Their Work, rarely is the correct answer given ("No. That's just stupid."), and rarely is the answer given before the end of the news (see Film At Eleven). This trope has given birth to Betteridge's Law of Headlines, wherein such headlines that pose such an ominous question can be immediately disproven. All the while, this sort of news teases the viewer in most likely presenting a ridiculous question with only one answer: no. Still, on the off chance that These Programs Could Kill You!!!, you are compelled to watch the late news, along with many others like Sheep to the Slaughter. See also You May Panic Now. The equal and opposite reaction to Ripped from the Headlines. Usually involves several Commercial Break Cliffhangers that promise the answer is coming up next!
open/close all folders
Live Action TV