A staple of slapstick
and other forms of physical comedy, a Face Plant refers to any instance where someone ends up having their face be the first part of their body to impact the ground after falling. The results to the victim can vary from simple embarrassment to serious injury or even death (though Rule of Funny
-usually- precludes it from going this far), depending on how hard the person hits the ground, what the surface they're falling on is, and how high they're falling from.
Not to be confused with the Anime & Manga trope of Face Fault, where someone winds up face-first on the ground after witnessing or being told something absurd.
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Anime & Manga
- In The Blue Lotus, Thompson and Thomson try to catch a train that has Tintin on it and fall on their faces. They are next seen in a hospital with their noses in casts.
- Happens in Twister when Jo Harding slams on the brakes on Bill's truck while he's in the back readying the probe, causing him to smack the back window face-first.
- Some of the games in the Battlefield series will automatically put the player into a head-down skydiving pose if they fall from a certain height. If the player doesn't have a parachute handy or doesn't deploy it in time, this can result in an invariably fatal faceplant.
- The majority of games that employ Ragdoll Physics will sometimes show characters faceplanting after being killed.
- In Space Quest III, the Have a Nice Death screen for falling deaths ("Deceleration Trauma") shows Roger Wilco upside down with his head mashed into the ground.
- Notably employed in Sonic the Hedgehog as a Running Gag.
- In Brain Dead 13, Lance does this on the chopping block table in a dead faint after his hand gets chopped off by Vivi.
Truth in Television
- Most blooper shows will usually have at least one clip per episode of someone falling victim to this.
- YouTube is similarly jam-packed with home videos showing people meeting Terra firma face-first.