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Don't Be Ridiculous
"... dogs come from the moon
, not the Sun!"
Alice says something ridiculous. Bob responds with this Stock Phrase
(or some close relative), then explains why
Alice's statement is ridiculous. Of course, Bob's justification is either as absurd, more absurd, or otherwise not a rebuttal one would normally make to the original statement.
Not quite the same as the usage of the phrase by Funny Foreigner
Balki Bartokomous in the sitcom Perfect Strangers
. (He would say it when suspected of doing something wrong, but usually wouldn't follow up with a nonsensical rebuttal.)
Often, Bob is The Ditz
, a Cloudcuckoolander
, or a Bunny-Ears Lawyer
. Less often, Alice is likewise one of those characters.
A common variant is that Alice's original statement was an attempt to guess what Bob is planning or doing. ("So you're going to just storm the castle?" "Don't be absurd. I'm going to storm the castle carrying this marionette.
See Insane Troll Logic
. Somewhat related to Voodoo Shark
(when Real Life
fiction-creators are seen doing this themselves — albeit not in response to a theory they find absurd). May also involve No, Except Yes
("No, I'm not eating an eraser. I'm eating two
erasers.") Compare Worrying for the Wrong Reason
("Sharks? Don't be silly. The crocodiles will get you first.")
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Anime & Manga
- In Tea With the Black Dragon by R. A. MacAvoy, during Martha's first conversation with Mayland Long, he tells her a version of the tale of Thomas the Rhymer, which continues past the usual ending point to talk about Thomas' son. When he finishes, she remarks that he tells it with such authority she could almost believe he'd had it from Thomas in person.
"From the Rhymer?" He leaned forward and lifted his eyebrows in mock wonderment. "How could that be? ... I have the story from the boy, of course. The Rhymer's son.
"Beautiful boy," he added, after a moment. "Resembled his mother."
- In So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish, Arthur can't resist making the obvious The Importance of Being Earnest reference when he learns Fenchurch's name: was she found in a handbag in Fenchurch Street Station?
Fenchurch: And the answer is no.
Fenchurch: I was conceived there.
- In Rivers of London, Peter tells Toby the dog that Nightingale would probably turn him into mittens. Nightingale objects, a shorthair would make terrible mittens, but might make a nice hat.
Live Action TV
- Full House:
Jesse: (coming into the kitchen and seeing Danny scrubbing suds between his hands) Joey, it's finally happened — he's cleaning liquid soap.
Don't be silly. I am just cleaning my rubber gloves.
Joey: Danny, there is no shame in therapy...
Walter: Don't be ridiculous. Perhaps a Pterodactyl...
- Doctor Who
- "The Stolen Earth":
Donna: Are you saying bees are aliens?
The Doctor: Don't be so daft. Not all of them.
- "Day of the Moon":
River: Apollo 11's your secret weapon?
The Doctor: No, no, it's not Apollo 11. That would be silly. It's Neil Armstrong's foot.
- "The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe":
Lily: I don't understand. Is this place real? Or is it fairyland?
The Doctor: Fairyland? Oh grow up, Lily! Fairyland looks completely different.
- "Dinosaurs on a Spaceship":
Brian: Are you saying dinosaurs are flying a spaceship?
The Doctor: Brian, please! That would be ridiculous. They're probably just passengers.
- "The Name of the Doctor":
Clara: So, how do we get down there? Jump?
The Doctor: Don't be silly. We fall.
- Shake It Up: (paraphrased)
Son: Dad, do you know Batman? 'Cuz I've been trying to contact him all day. (shows flashlight converted into a Batsignal)
Dad: That's ridiculous. You know as well as I do that Batman lives in Gotham City!
- An old Peanuts comic had Linus trying to throw rocks at the stars. Lucy eventually stops him, admonishing him with "You blockhead! What if you had hit one?!"
- The Goon Show - in "The Dreaded Batter Pudding Hurler", Henry Crun and Minnie Bannister discuss shooting elephants (out of season, no less) in Sussex. The announcer then adds this:
Listeners who are listening
will, of course, realise that Minnie and Henry are talking rubbish; as erudite people will realise, there are no elephants in Sussex. They're only found in Kent
"Where are we going to find a shrubbery?"
"Well, maybe we can build one? Out of cats."
"Don't be ridiculous. Where are we going to find cats?"
- In Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening, Oghren tells the Warden that he's heard about schleets, monsters that disguise themselves as a seemingly ordinary pair of pants, then gouge out a victim's eyes. The Warden can egg him on by claiming schleets then lay eggs in the victim's eye sockets, to which he retorts "What kind of moron do you think I am? Schleets don't lay eggs!"
- Darths & Droids, when the characters are surrounded by enemy ships:
Qui-Gon: I've got an idea!
Qui-Gon: Don't be stupid! That would only take one or two hits, at most. Tell them we're bringing up a load of the Queen's laundry.
- In The Order of the Stick, Roy has suggested that Elan sleep, but Elan is too worried to sleep. So...
Roy: Then go play quietly with your puppet or something!
Don't be ridiculous, Roy! You know Banjo
is even more worried than I am.
- In a Rooster Teeth Short when they find that their new intern is a puppet.
Burnie: Don't be silly, Muppets are trademark.
- Homestar Runner:
- In the Halloween cartoon "Happy Hallow-Day", Strong Sad accuses The King of Town of eating Halloween Night. The King of Town protests "You amateurs, you don't know what you're talking about. I'm on a diet! It's strictly Arbor Day and Earth Day for me this year!"
- In the cartoon "Cool Things", the following exchange occurs when Homestar spots Strong Sad through a pair of Cool Shades covered in wet yellow paint.
Homestar: Oh, hello, Dripping Yellow Madness!
Strong Sad:' What? I'm Strong Sad. Dripping Yellow Madness moved away after the fifth grade.
- Alice in Wonderland, when the Mad Hatter is "fixing" the White Rabbit's watch:
March Hare: Mustard?
Mad Hatter: Mustard, yes... Mustard?! Don't let's be silly! Lemon, that's more like it.
- Dexter's Laboratory had this in the Charlie and the Chocolate Parody "Golden Diskette", when Professor Hawk (a Stephen Hawking clone who's just a human head on a mechanical bird body) makes his big entrance.
Boy: It's a bird!
Girl: It's a plane!
Man: Don't be silly. It's just a man's head on a robot body.
- Squidbillies: Something has wrecked the Cuyler house.
Rusty: I think Godzilly came over here and tipped our house up off the ground!
Early: Son... Son, now come on. That's impossible. Ol' Godziller he lives over 'ere in Ja-pan. An' that's a long-ass commute just fer a beatdown.
- In one episode of Codename: Kids Next Door, the episode ends just as Numbuh Five tells the other kids where babies come from. The Stinger shows the other kids reacting with disgust... except Numbuh One, who protests "Babies don't come from Detroit, they come from Philadelphia!"