The standard way for things to go From Bad to Worse
is rain. When things are looking real bad for a character, the story will add insult to injury with a perfectly-timed downpour.
often precedes this trope. While this trope can easily occur with no spoken dialogue at all, if a character is foolish enough to actually say
"At least it can't get any worse," or, even more dangerous, "At least it's not raining"... BOOM!
It'll start raining immediately
This is a type of Empathic Environment
—the dark and gloomy rainclouds are great for symbolically mirroring the character's hopelessness and despair; see Gray Rain of Depression
, a supertrope
. It's almost always Hostile Weather
Subtrope of From Bad to Worse
, and frequently follows Rock Bottom
. The inverse
is Cue the Sun
, where the dark skies clear up when things start to get better. Contrast Happy Rain
and Redemption in the Rain
Snow, hail, and other forms of precipitation count too
, but rain is much more common.
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- One of the "Brian the Robot" ads for car insurance comparison website Confused.com has Brian stuck to an electromagnet and damaged. He remarks, "At least it's not raining..." and then this trope kicks in. It's actually quite heartbreaking.
- Rarity pulls off a deliberate invocation of this trope in Pony Up A Tree for the Triptych Continuum. "And if I were to make the classic error of voicing my false belief that at the very least, things could not possibly become any worse?" Which brings the expected results. And also confirms that Rainbow, who can't resist a good feed line, is secretly observing the hijinks from an overhead cloud.
Film - Animated
Film - Live-Action
- In Sanford and Son the pair have a disastrous camping trip and Lamont notes that it could be worse. When his father asks how, Lamont notes "It could snow." Sure enough, it instantly starts snowing right there and then.
- Turned up an extra notch in That's So Raven: Raven got stuck in a limo's moon roof when going to prom. Then it started raining on her. "Well at least it can't get any worse"...cue the gale force winds.
- Inverted in The West Wing, where rain was seen as a good thing that needed to happen in a string of good things happening—it turned away late voters who would have voted for the other guy, and the rain was literally called on cue by Will (with a lampshade with a "I didn't know I could do that"). It would have been played straight if it was from other guy's POV.
- Also inverted in How I Met Your Mother, where Ted calls down a deluge in a massive thunderclap by screaming "COME ON!!" at the heavens after doing a desperate Rain Dance all afternoon. However, it played this trope straight for Sandy Rivers, who was going to get laid on a planned camping trip that was canceled by the rain. In fact, Sandy is seen crying while he reports on the downpour on TV.
- The Russian punk rock band Sektor Gaza has a song "Tuman" ("Fog") with lyrics that literally translate as: "We're getting the jitters / The rain started suddenly / The stiff, pouring rain will finally kill us..."
- The lyrics to Shampoo's "Trouble":
We couldn't get a cab, 'cause we ain't got no money!
We missed the last train, but we thought...
We'd get the night bus, but the night bus never came!
We'd almost gone home, and it started to...
- Everybody out of the Water by The Wallflowers starts with some catastrophe followed by rain:
Now on your marks, get set, let's go.
You gotta move now before she explodes.
Look out the window, look down below.
Back away from the glass! There she blows.
The city's been leveled, the hills are in flames.
The streets cracked open and they're pushing up clay.
The temperature's dropped. The sky is gray.
And it ain't even over. Here comes driving rain.
- Naturally, the rain stops the exact moment they decide to leave.
- Company, "Getting Married Today," after the second verse of Amy's nervous breakdown:
Bless this bride,
Slipping down the drain,
And bless this day in our hearts (thunder)
As it starts to rain.
- In The Less Than Epic Adventures of TJ and Amal, on a trail in the Smoky Mountains.
- Jayce says almost this exact phrase in this page of Applegeeks, much to Alice's increasing irritation.
Alice: "Your headstart is as long as it takes me to fix this tire."
- Digger is looking for a decent place to sleep outside:
"In fact, it might be kind of fun, as long as it stays warm and-" *drip* "-dry." *downpour*
- Matchu, who has just missed the bus, muses that it's at least a nice day. It downpours immediately. Matchu is then struck by lightning. Twice.