Alice and Ben are trapped in a panic room and Carl is having a nervous breakdown, Ben finds something sticking in a wall, a red box saying: "In Case of Crisis within a panic room, break glass."
Naturally Alice and Ben oblige and break the glass with the tiny hammer.
Two different events can happen at this point:
The thing inside the glass is just what Alice and Ben were looking for to have Carl calm down. The panic attack within the panic room has been averted. And there was much rejoicing.
Or, the thing turns out to be totally useless, but it doesn't stop Alice and Ben from using it anyway. Somehow. And it either works or just makes the situation worse.
In case of examples, read below:
- In Ed, Edd n Eddy's Big Picture Show, the Eds are trying to find a way out of Eddy's Brother's room when this happens:
Ed: Look! (showing Edd and Eddy a red box)
Edd: "In Case of Movie, break glass"?
Eddy: Bingo! (breaks the glass with the tiny hammer) My bro's always prepared! (proceeds to reach for...a peanut; Eddy starts looking confused) A peanut?
- Fortunately, the peanut contained the key to Eddy's Brother's car, which the Eds promptly used to escape from the Cul-De-Sac. Sort of.
- Looney Tunes
- Double Subverted in The Hardship of Miles Standish, John Aldin (played by Elmer Fudd) finds a glass case reading "In Case of Indians, Break Glass". He simply lifts the glass up and takes out the gun behind it...then he breaks the glass.
- In Kitty Kornered, Porky takes out a gun from behind glass when he thinks he's being attacked by martians. He lampshades it by asking who put it there.
- In the Family Guy episode "When You Wish Upon a Weinstein", when a group of nuns get word of Peter entering a synagogue, they rush toward a case reading "In Case Of Heresy, Break Glass" and smash it to reveal rules behind it.