This is when someone says "We'll edit that part out later
" but then...doesn't. Instead, the whole preceding sequence is included anyway
, often for comedic effect. This can be done to make someone look silly or dumb, for irony, or just for laughs. A common variant is when a person is on camera but isn't aware that they're being filmed live
, so when they mess something up they'll stop awkwardly and ask for a redo. Or they'll say "you'll cut that out, right?" (The gag can be played up by the cameraman/editor assuring them that, yes, of course it'll be cut out
...). Though mostly for comedic value, in rare cases it might be used in a serious manner specifically to make someone look bad or dishonest.
When used in a fictional setting, it almost always requires an In-Universe Camera
. Happens often in Mockumentaries
and Show Within a Show
situations, but isn't strictly limited to those. Can also be used as a gag in Real Life
productions, such as plays, broadcasts, or comedy shows.
Compare Fix It in Post
, which is Real Life Script Speak
uttered during production of a work; you usually won't know about the sequence because it's actually been edited out
Contrast Throw It In
, when a Real Life
unscripted performance is included in a production, whereas Left It In is an In-Universe
example of someone requesting or mentioning that the very scene they're in should be cut (and then it's not). See also Hilarious Outtakes
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Anime & Manga
- Seina's mother says this in Tenchi Muyo! GXP as the family is leaves him with a recruiter. To go to Hawaii.
- In National Lampoons Vacation, before the family left for their trip to Europe from winning a game show, Clark videotapes Ellen while she's taking a shower, who then tells him to delete it after he's finished. When the family got their camera stolen by a thief while they were in France and they arrive in Rome, Ellen then discovers that Clark did not delete the video of her in the shower at all, when she sees a poster advertising a movie that starred her. Apparently, the thief discovered the video after he stole the camera and advertised it as a movie.
- Dr. Strangelove: This is how Stanley Kubrick managed to convince George C Scott to be so over-the-top in his role as General Turgidson. Scott wanted to play him as a noble yet tragic character despite the film being a comedy. So Kubrick would encourage him to do "warmup" takes in preparation for the real thing. The over-the-top takes thus were used in the actual movie, and hilarity was held by all, except Scott. Scott then swore to never work with Kubrick again, even though he admired the sneaky genius of it.
- While working on Shark Attack 3: Megalodon, John Barrowman improvised a rather saucy line to try and get a laugh out of another actor, thinking that it wouldn't be in the final cut. Imagine his surprise.
- In-universe example: Hud from Cloverfield promises to edit out some of the party-goers' comments that they wish they hadn't said on camera. Obviously he didn't because he died, as their remarks are still present in his Found Footage Films.
- Played for Drama: Early in District 9, Wikus, while leading the documentary crew through a tour of a Prawn's home, gets sprayed on the face and arm with some kind of fluid, and he stuffily orders the crew to "Edit that out," because he's a pompous bully (to Prawns) who doesn't want to be exposed as the kind of idiot who gets sprayed with fluid when he didn't even wear a surgical mask. That footage is then preserved for In-Universe reasons: the Mockumentary begins recording what happens to Wikus two hours after exposure, eight hours after exposure, twenty-four hours after exposure...
- A Dubya-parodying character in one of the Ciaphas Cain novels ends an atrociously bad speech with something like "You'll edit that out anyway... what do you mean it was live?"
- Towards the later books of the Honor Harrington series, Manticore is maneuvered into conflict with the Solarian League, with the system of New Tuscany working as a cats-paw. New Tuscany is submitting staged information to the Solarian League indicating that Manticore has been harassing their shipping, and includes several scripted interviews to support their allegations. The interviews include several bits of dialogue before the official start where the interviewer "reassures" and "comforts" the subject. The propaganda spymasters in charge of it all will edit those parts out, but will "accidentally" include the raw footage to help support the claim that these were all natural and un-coereced statements.
- This is a common bit on talk shows:
- On Dirty Jobs Mike or his host will occasionally screw up on camera, then Mike will use this line.
- No surprise, as it fits very much with the meta-theme of the show; oftentimes they'll include shots of the crew setting up the very shot you see next.
- In several cases, a job would go bad due to a production accident or the host being difficult. Instead of cutting the whole thing they'll broadcast it anyway.
- There is at least one instance on MythBusters where the trope is done. After completing testing on the "Peeing on the Third Rail" myth, Adam starts acting like a drunk about to perform the myth, then explicitly says, "That'll never make it on the show." Except it did make it.
- In The Comic Strip Presents: More Bad News, Vim/Alan breaks the fourth wall and threatens to sue the producers if they leave in a particularly embarrassing item about him. Unfortunately for him he later gets beaten up and left in a coma, so the item stays in.
- Often used on Have I Got News for You. Since it's reached the level of Running Gag, it's probably a pretty good way to guarantee a flub will be left in.
- Double Subverted on one occasion: a panelist asked if a line could be edited out. When told, "No", he sincerely apologised. Paul Merton instantly said "Now that bit, we'll edit out."
- In one segment of Chappelle's Show, A reporter is investigating a Jedi abuse scandal analogous to the Catholic priest pedophilia scandals. While interviewing a "Jarth Mader", an anonymous victim who wears a helmet and has a respiration problem, Mader puts his head in his hands in tears. The reporter says "Cut" to the cameraman, but mouths the words "keep rolling" since Mader's not looking.
- On the Mary Tyler Moore Show, Mary is interviewing a male author with the intention of cutting in a tape of Murray asking the questions later. At the end, the author asks Mary out. The final result that is broadcast shows Murray being asked out by the author.
- In the Stargate Atlantis episode "Letters from Pegasus", McKay gives a videotaped message to Ford, who's editing a bunch of these messages together to send back to Earth. McKay recorded the message while severely sleep-deprived, so it's full of rambling, back-tracking, and McKay telling Ford to edit out the last thing he just said.
- Shows up frequently on Top Gear, most commonly invoked by James May.
- A regular occurrence on Mock the Week. On one glorious occasion, a string of off-colour jokes was met with cheerful insouciance from John Oliver; "I think we all know, in our heart-of-hearts, that this is not making the edit." Naturally, it did. But for the most part, the panelists have a good idea of what won't make it into the broadcast, and the show is essentially a tug-of-war between them trying to make the worst jokes they can conceive, and the producers trying to cajole them (via Dara Ó Briain's earpiece) to do something that's actually fit for television. Since a lot of the cut material ends up in the Christmas Special, often a panelist will make an off-color joke and then lampshade it by exclaiming "Merry Christmas!"
- In "A Portrait of P.D.Q. Bach," the host, Professor Peter Schickele flubs his narration a couple times. The technician promises to fix it up later. Schickele tries to emphasize it: "Don't forget to do it!" To no avail.
- The Braindead Monkeys song "Don't Save This" (mp3), from their first album Moist & Meaty, is both about and a result of this phenomena, as Chaz honestly thought his improvised dialogue had crossed the line, and also because at one point in the track a dynamic microphone intended for faint fills is completely inserted into a trumpet.
- In the Stephen Sondheim musical Merrily We Roll Along, the lead character is a songwriter. He's showing off a new song he's working on, and after the line "They're always popping their cork", he mutters, "I'll fix that line". He never gets a chance to, because they get a booking and the show with the song in it goes up too quickly.
- The News Quiz:
- When Andy Hamilton realised to his horror that he'd been saddled with the Princess Diana conspiracy theory question, Alan Coren cheerfully told him "I wouldn't work too hard, there's no way they'll broadcast it."
- In one episode without Andy, Sandi Toksvig starts making height jokes about him. When the others start joining in, she says "If I'm in charge of the edit, that's the only bit that'll go out."
- Simon Hoggart's introduction to the Hilarious Out Takes section of The Very Best of 2004:
: So here's a selection of the best slip-ups and beep
-ups. Sorry can I do that again? I think I said beep
when I mesnt beep
- In the podcast Webcomics Weekly, the hosts often go off on various tangents while talking, or they'll have computer issues while recording (a common occurrence). Someone will say that they'll be fixing it afterwards, but they rarely (if ever) do. In fact, it's become a running gag.
- The podcast The Skeptics Guide To The Universe started off very PG, as the host Steven Novella would edit out profanity. The show has gradually gotten more adult thanks in part to this trope. Due to Steve's shift in editing, the blue humor of the Rogues Gallery has been slowly revealed over the years as Steve has left in more and more of the "too bad you're going to edit this out" moments. Steve himself even plays it up, mockingly saying "Oh yeah, I'll totally edit that out" after someone says something stupid/embarrassing.
- Phelous seems fond of this.
Hey, why did I record that? Oh well, there's absolutely no chance that I'll edit it into the final video.
- Articles on The Agony Booth will sometimes have the writer make a rather perverted comment, followed by a note to themselves to edit it out before posting. "Don't forget now!"
- In his Let's Play videos, slowbeef often speaks of editing out his failures and certain comments by his guest commentators. It rarely happens, unless there are enough failures that it makes the unedited video tedious to watch.
- Tobuscus frequently yells at his just off-camera assistant, "Steven", to edit out embarrassing parts of his Lazy Vlogs. The Running Gag is that there is no editing of the vlogs, just as there is (probably) no Steven.
- Several times on Spoiler Warning, one of the cast as expressed relief that Josh has gotten himself killed again, so that their previous awful jokes or awkward tangents can be edited out without skipping important gameplay scenes. Shamus keeps them in.
- Psycomedia - if you put together a lazy editor and a co-host who enjoys making life difficult for him, you get this trope.
- In the Feed Dump episode "The Resistor"...
Graham: They recovered a stolen shipment of Gavinci perfume worth $1.2 million. Unused, too. The thieves are still at large, and probably smell great.
Matt: I shouldn't even say it, because we all know it's not going in...
Kathleen (shot from the webcam of the editing computer): Oh really, Matthew?
Matt: Smell great, Graham? Really? This is the French we're talking about, and as far as we know, the shipment was unused.
- Achievement Hunter has various Let's Play and related videos where particularly embarassing moments for the staff will end with them making a note to cut it out. One episode had Michael worrying that more than half of their dialogue would be nothing but them discussing how to edit the video.
- In Part 2 of the Penny Arcade: The Series pilot, Scott Kurtz cracks a joke about the bad timing of Tycho having a kid during PAX right before realizing that he's on camera.
- Happens frequently in The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, especially in early episodes where Lizzie asks Charlotte to edit out parts of her video and Charlotte keeps them in, often with an amusing caption.
- Happens all the time on RPGMP 3. They actually have edited something out... once...
- Used in the Becoming YouTube entry, "YouTube Vs. The World."
- In STAR__'s Team Fortress 2 video "Jerma is Mad, pt. 3", Jerma has an angry outburst after STAR_ kills him the second that he respawns.
: Can't even play the fucking goddamn game. (in a mocking voice
) Hey, I'm so good, I play Sniper, I headshot everyone! Gaaa, yeah, Jerma Is Mad part 3
! Wow, let's put cigarettes out on my dick! (One cut later
) STAR_, if you're editing this together, don't
use the "put cigarettes out on my dick" line, okay?
- A common joke of the Game Grumps is for the Grumps to say or do something especially dumb or offensive and ask their editor Barry to make sure to take it out, then immediately Lampshade that it's likely to be left in. In fact, it was once lampshaded that, as often as Danny will ask Barry to edit something out, Arin would immediately countermand it and demand that it not only be left in, but expanded on.
- Harmontown: Dan will often make empty promises to "edit all this out" if things get pretty ridiculous, and will sometimes even shout something to ensure that the section cannot be aired, like "Hitler had some good ideas!" but of course all of it ends up in the podcast.
- Co-Optitude: Ryon's misreading of the blurb for The Typing of the Dead causes Felicia to collapse with laughter.
Ryon: Never mind, anyway, they're not going to use that cut.
Felicia (laughing nearly too hard to speak): Yes, they are!
- On Family Guy, when Brian joins The Bachelorette, he makes some (potentially libelous) comments about Chevy Chase to the Confession Cam and then asks if they can cut that part out...and then goes on to say even more things about Chevy.
- Averted on the "Bastard Chef" episode of Archer, when Cyril "Chet Manly" Figgis, resident Chew Toy, slips and falls on a yogurt spill:
Cyril: "You guys can edit that out, right?"
Camera Woman: "Yes, but we won't."
- On the South Park episode, "Volcano", while the mayor's speech is being recorded live...
Mayor: "God, please deliver these kids from... oh, waitwaitwait... okay... 3, 2, and 1... God, PLEASE, deliver these kids from..."
- The Simpsons episode "Radio Bart", where Bart pretends to (and the later, for real) fall down a well. Kent Brockman attempts to interview Homer on the air...
Homer: Uh, you can edit out that part, right?
Kent: Homer, we're live from coast to coast.
- Used in Barbie: A Fairy Secret. Raquelle tries to discuss the best part about the film she and Barbie costarred in, only for Barbie to show up. Unfortunately, they're at a live coverage of the premiere...