Jay: Run over your plan one more time, 'cause I'm struggling with it. You neuralised your memory of the Light but left yourself clues. A photo pointing to a key in a pizzeria which opens a locker at Grand Central. In the locker, we'll find another clue.A form of quick exposition used to sum up the crazy situation that the characters have gotten themselves into. It can be for a few different reasons. Maybe someone's playing a game of Xanatos Speed Chess or Gambit Roulette, or there's a Gambit Pileup going down, and the character(s) are assessing the problem to make a quick decision on their feet. Maybe someone is about to do / has done something insanely stupid, and another character tries to talk them out of / calls them out on it by pointing out the idiocy of the plan. Sometimes a character, finding themselves in an unfamiliar / scary / Mind Screw situation, speaks to him/herself to clear their own head. Sometimes a previous character has just explained it for the first time, either offscreen, but presumably at too much length to show the audience or onscreen in a way the audience is not expected to comprehend. Could happen as an Inner Monologue, or by speaking to a mirror or some other object. Frequently begins with the words "So let me get this straight...", and also frequently ends with "... is that about right?" However, it can also be pulled off without saying either of those phrases. Often, after the Let Me Get This Straight exposition is provided, a character will support The Plan by saying that it's Crazy Enough to Work. When done well, may double up as a Funny Moment. If the exposition puts the whole plot or certain point in a nutshell, then there is a very high chance that the line will be used in the trailer for the movie/episode. Truth in Television; which one of us hasn't done this at least once? Not related to Kirk Summation unless in regards to the Evil Plan. Is usually delivered by a Deadpan Snarker. When the characters are talking about something the audience aren't aware of, it's As You Know. When the character belatedly realizes a problem from his own explanation, it's Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!.
Kay: I like to keep my enemies confused.
Jay: We're all confused, Kay.
Kay: I like to keep my enemies confused.
Jay: We're all confused, Kay.
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Anime & Manga
- The English dub of Evangelion 1.0: You Are (Not) Alone tries to use this to cover up for an As You Know in the original script — Ritsuko had explained Misato's plan to Misato just so the audience could hear it. The dub makes it smoother by having Ritsuko take up the Snark Ball and say something to the effect of "Let me get this straight: your plan is to [exposition goes here]? That's not crazy at all.
- In The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya, Koizumi says this in regards to the things Kyon said he did in the "normal" world.
- The first episode of Haiyore! Nyarko-san gently spoofs and justifies this: After Nyarko's explanation turns into nonsensical rambling that gets fast-forwarded, Mahiro boils it all down to the key points for the sake of his own sanity.
Nyarko: [crying tender tears] So concise!
- King from The Seven Deadly Sins asks his fellow Sins why they do not have their Sacred Treasures and is less than pleased with their responses:
King: Let's back up a minute. You took the Sacred Treasure that was bestowed upon you by King Liones himself... (to Meliodas) And sold it?!Meliodas: I needed seed money for the tavern.King: (to Ban) Yours was stolen?!Ban: When they threw my butt into that prison.(King turns to Diane, who covers her face with her hair in shame)Diane: Am I a bad girl...?King: If it got misplaced, then it's not your fault.
- Bill Hicks, talking about how Australia was populated by criminals.
Bill: (in a British accent) Let me get this straight: You keep the shitty food and the shitty weather, and we get the Great Barrier Reef and lobsters the size of canoes?... I'm Jack the Ripper!
- Bill Maher, in one of his earliest standups shown in Religulous, about circumcision.
Bill: We're used to it now, but I'm sure when Moses came down with this idea, there had to be one guy going: "Let me get this straight"...
- In Fray, we have this exchange:
Fray: Okay, I'm supposed to fight the coming onslaught of Lurks and I'm being taught by a sarcastic goat-thing whose idea of training is throwing scrap metal at me because the good guys all went crazy waiting for the monsters to come back.
Fray: Just checking.
- Played straight in The Order of the Stick's prequel Start of Darkness, where Right-Eye double-checks the facts of a plan he has undoubtedly heard dozens of times while pre-lich Xykon is in the bathroom. He even ends with, "Just making sure I had it right."
- Happens in one Super Mario Bros. comic story where King Koopa's army develops a Stupid Bomb:
King Koopa: Let me get this straight; you just handed the Marios several Stupid Bombs and let them walk home.
Snifit: I'm pretty sure we did... and some of the less stupid guys said we weren't supposed to.
- In The Far Side, irritated parents confront their babysitter, who is obviously a wicked witch:
"Now let me get this straight. We hired you to babysit the kids, and instead you cooked and ate them BOTH?"
- Double points for the implication that they wouldn't have minded if she only ate one.
- Peter also says this regarding Jason's ideas for the Special Editions of Star Wars in FoxTrot:
Peter: Let me get this straight — You think they should digitally insert you into the revised Star Wars movies?!
- Happens in Doonesbury when B.D., on his Vietnam tour, gets captured by a V.C. terrorist named Nguyen Van Phred. The two get lost in the wilderness, become Friendly Enemies, and manage to survive when they find a case of beer and get drunk. The next day they are found and this is the result.
- Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series has had the Yugi character say this a lot. Probably because he's surrounded by a lot of wackiness. Lampshaded in one episode: After Kaiba was trapped in a virtual world by his corporate partners, Mokuba escaped and went to the game shop to ask Yugi and his friends for help. The scene cuts to Yugi saying: "Your brother's been kidnapped?", to which Mokuba responds: "Yes, that is exactly what I just finished telling you."
- In Kyon: Big Damn Hero a unnamed high-ranked member of the Organization questions Koizumi's motive to retire from it.
- This is the premise of Sarah 1281's Run That by Me Again?, which gives Hermione (and occasionally Harry) the gift of Logical Thinking.
- Calvin and Hobbes: The Series: Calvin does this while capping off his clever Mind Screw Batman Gambit.
- Reflections Of Demons: Zabuza's reason for giving No Sympathy to Sasuke after he explains his Dark and Troubled Past and current behavior. He points out that Sasuke is following the advice of the man who murdered his clan, and rather than be a broody asshole could be more social in defiance to Itachi. He also points out that Itachi is either a sadist for telling Sasuke how to live his life or Itachi enacted a failed Batman Gambit because Sasuke was "too stupid" to read between the lines of Itachi's "Break Them by Talking" lecture.
- in Frozen Hearts, Johan says this about Hans' plan to return to Arendelle.
Johan: "So you're going back to apologize to this crazy magical woman who can't control herself and just happens to be the newly-appointed Queen of Arendelle? After you tried to kill her? Are you mentally ill?"
- First Try Series, Sakura tries to report Naruto for hitting her the clerk refuses to go along with it because she, an Academy student, tried to assault Naruto, who is full-fledge Genin who unfortunately missed his Chunin promotion, and let her off with a warning.
- In Warriors of the World: Soldiers of Fortune, Valkron finds the need to straighten things out with Emeth when he makes an odd request.
"When most people notice something going wrong, they stay away. You, on the other hand, have just said you want to get closer to it to investigate. And you see nothing wrong with that?"
- In I Am What I Am, Whistler asks the Oracles why he's being tasked with reviving one of the worst demons in history. The Oracles reassure him that The Judge will be defeated because "it's supposed to be". Whistler calls the Oracles out on the idea that something will happen because "it's supposed to" when their very problem is that nothing has been happening the way it's "supposed to" since Halloween.
- A Unstable Balance opens with this: LeafClan's medicine cat says the trope line upon finding out that Goldkit ate a strange plant out of curiosity. The implication is that she can't believe he was dumb enough to do that.
- When a Xander from an alternate universe shows up in the canon universe in one Buffy the Vampire Slayer story, the others give him a rundown of everything that's happened in the six months or so since Halloween. Upon hearing about Angel losing his soul, Alternate Xander responds, "Wait, you're telling me that Dead Buffy becoming Live Buffy made him less happy than fucking Buffy?"
- In AssClass, (an abridged series of Assassination Classroom) this trope is used to make an otherwise serious topic blackly comedic:
Nagisa: So what you're telling me is, that you want me- while you sit back and do nothing- to walk up to that monster, and blow myself up.
- In Bitter Tears: An Anon-A-Miss Fic, when Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, and Scootaloo confess being Anon-A-Miss to the Humane Five and explain their reasons for doing so, Rainbow responds with this to make them realize how stupid they were:
Rainbow Dash: Let me see if I got this right. You posted our most private and embarrassing secrets, made us laughingstocks of the entire school, framed Sunset, and turned the school completely on its head... because you didn't get invited to a freaking slumber party. That's what you're telling me.
- From Avatar: The Abridged Series, when Sokka learns the Mechanist can't get the war balloon to work:
Sokka: Let me get this straight: you can invent tanks, jetskis, and a gigantic freakin' drill...but the concept of a hot air balloon eludes you???
Mechanist: Ummm... yes.
Sokka: I hate this world and everyone in it.
- In Chapter 28 of American Dragon: Jake Long fanfic "Her Fate", Rita tries to make sense of the plot.
Rita: Let mt get this straight. The dragons are teaming up with the people who kill dragons for a living to kill the woman who's trying to protect dragons. Oh, well then, that makes loads of sense.
- Her unwillingness to put up with idiocy is what eventually makes her change sides.
- An Alternate Keitaro Urashima: Keitaro and Mutsumi discussing the old promise in Chapter 18:
Keitaro: So let me see if I got this right. You and I promised to go to Tokyo University as kids in the sandbox, you and me.Mutsumi: That's right.Keitaro: But then, you saw Naru and wanted to do something to help her get better so you decided that a way to help is to promise her that she and I could be together when going to Tokyo University, which made the promise itself already completely invalid.Mutsumi: Yes.Keitaro: So my grandmother saw and knew what was going on as she saw it happened.Mutsumi: Yes Keitaro.Keitaro: I see... so all this time, all these years. Now I understand... Mutsumi, is it also the reason why you rejected me four years ago?Mutsumi: Yes... I was... I thought that it was better this way but I was wrong and I know was unfair. It was unfair for what I did... I wanted you and Naru to be happy and I thought that when the promises were made, that you two would find happiness.Keitaro: Mutsumi, when you saw Naru again, you actually recognized her, didn't you?Mutsumi: Yes...
- The Totally Amazing Spider Man: Clover's complaint in Chapter 6 about being assigned to bring Spider-Man in.
Clover: Let me get this straight: you wake us up in the middle of the night, drag us to W.O.O.H.P. Headquarters via vacuuming tubeswithout the slightest warning, while still in our pajamas, for the 12th time this year might I add, and ask us to bring in some guy in a unitard who has been busting bad guys left and right? Why?
- We Stand United: Sirius upon learning about the detention Harry and his friends had to serve at the Forbidden Forest.
Sirius: Let me get this straight. For being out of bounds at night, she sends you out of bounds at night?
Films — Animation
- From Shrek:
Donkey: Let me get this straight. You're gonna go fight a dragon and rescue a princess just so Farquaad will give you back a swamp which you only don't have because he filled it full of freaks in the first place. Is that about right?
Shrek: Y'know, maybe there's a good reason donkeys shouldn't talk.
- The Lion King: "Let me get this straight. You know her. She knows you. But she wants to eat him. And everybody is okay with this? Did I miss something?!"
- In Frozen, this is implied to be what Kristoff means when he hears about Anna's whirlwind engagement to Hans and says, "HANG ON! You mean to tell me you got engaged to someone you just met that day?!"
- In Big Hero 6, a skeptical cop listening to Hiro's story: "Alright, let me get this straight. A man in a kabuki mask attacked you with an army of miniature flying robots..."
- Wreck-It Ralph: Ralph, upon learning that Vanellope doesn't know how to drive a racing car.
Ralph: Let me get this straight; you don't know how to drive.
Vanellope: Well no, not technically. But I just thought—
Ralph: What did you think?! "Oh, I'll just magically win the race just because I really want to!"
Vanellope: Look wise guy, I know I'm a racer. I can feel it in my code.
Films — Live-Action
- Page quote is from Men in Black II, from Agent Jay to Agent Kay.
- In Blade II, Blade is a bit surprised when he hears the vampires' proposal to deal with the new Reaper strain:
Blade: Let me get this straight; you want me to hunt them — for you?
- Al from Sahara (2005):
Al: We're in a middle of a desert, looking for the source of a river polluting wells, using as our map a cave drawing of a civil war gunship which is also in the desert. So I just wondered when we're gonna have to sit down and re-evaluate our decision-making paradigm.
- Ben Grimm in Fantastic Four:
Ben: Okay; we're now officially enemies of the United States of America, Victor is out there with unlimited power, and we've got a giant intergalactic force that's about to destroy our planet in less than twenty four hours. Did I miss anything?
- Played straight in the Dawn of the Dead (2004) remake, where the resident character with the Jerkass Fašade points out all the flaws with the proposed plan of action... then signs on to help anyway.
- Nice Guy Eddie does this in Reservoir Dogs when he refuses to believe Mr. Orange's explanation for why he had to shoot Mr. Blonde:
Nice Guy Eddie: Okay, let me just say this out loud, cause I wanna get this straight in my head. You're saying that Mr. Blonde was gonna kill you, and then when we got back he was gonna kill us, take the satchel of diamonds and scram, I'm right about that right, that's correct, that's your story?
- Ocean's Eleven: "Let me get this straight: say we get past the door we can't open and down the elevator we can't use and past the guards with the guns and into the vault we can't open; what then? Do we just walk out with a hundred and fifty million dollars?"
- The Dark Knight: Bruce Wayne's accountant Coleman Reese has stumbled upon blueprints for the Tumblers, realizing that Bruce is Batman, and demands from Fox $10 million a year for the rest of his life. Fox's deadpan response: "Let me get this straight: You think that your client, one of the wealthiest, most powerful men in the world, is secretly a vigilante who spends his nights beating criminals to a pulp with his bare hands. And your plan is to blackmail this person? Good luck."
- Inception: "So, now we're trapped in Fischer's mind battling his own private army, and if we get killed, we'll be lost in limbo till our brains turn to scrambled egg."
- Back to the Future: "Wait a minute. Wait a minute, Doc. Are you tellin' me you built a time machine... out of a DeLorean?"
- The film features an outrageously straight version of this trope. "All right. Let me get this straight. You want to burn it down and out of the pipes, force it in here, slam the door — and trap its ass? And you want help from us Y-chromo boys?" One can only wonder how Ripley managed to explain the plan in a way convoluted enough that Dillon had to get it straight.
- Also, more humorously: "Let me see if I have this correct, Lieutenant — it's an 8-foot creature of some kind with acid for blood, and it arrived on your spaceship. It kills on sight, and is generally unpleasant."
- Star Trek: First Contact has the crew of the Enterprise having to explain the situation to the inventor of warp drive.
Zefram Cochrane: Let me see just make sure that I understand you correctly, "Commander". A group of cybernetic creatures from the future have traveled back through time to enslave the human race, and you're here to stop them?
Riker: That's right.
Cochrane: Hot damn, you're heroic.
- Road to Morocco has this exchange:
Turkey Jackson: A fine thing. First, you sell me for two hundred bucks. Then I'm gonna marry the Princess; then you cut in on me. Then we're carried off by a desert sheik. Now, we're gonna have our heads chopped off.
Jeff Peters: I know all that.
Turkey Jackson: Yeah, but the people who came in the middle of the picture don't.
Jeff Peters: You mean they missed my song?
- Spaceballs has exposition by Col. Sanders and Dark Helmet in this style.
Dark Helmet: Everybody got that?!
- Frederick Fronkensteen gets one with I-gor in Young Frankenstein.
Frederick: Are you saying that I put an abnormal brain... into a seven-and-a-half foot long... fifty-four inch wide... [latches his hands around I-gor's throat] GORILLA!? IS - THAT - WHAT - YOU'RE - TELLING - ME!?
- Highlander II: The Quickening has this exchange that almost seems like a lampshading on just how stupidly convoluted the basic premise has become:
Louise: Okay, now let me just see if I can get this straight. You come from another planet, and you're mortal there, but you're immortal here until you kill all the guys from there who have come here... and then you're mortal here... unless you go back there, or some more guys from there come here, in which case you become immortal here... again.
Connor: Something like that.
- Commando has this priceless exchange:
Cindy: You steal my car, you rip the seat out, you kidnap me, you ask me to help you find your daughter, which I very kindly do, and then you get me involved in a shoot out where people are dying and there's blood spurting all over the place, and then I watch you rip a phone booth out of a wall, swing from the ceiling like Tarzan, and then there's a cop that's going to shoot you and I save you and they start chasing me! Are you going to tell me what's going on or what?!
- Charlie Wilson's War has this:
Zvi: Now, just to sum this up in a nutshell; you want me to steer Israel towards an arms deal with Egypt, Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Charlie: And Saudi Arabia.
Zvi: Well, just a couple of problems I can foresee, off the top of my head.
Charlie: I know.
Zvi: Pakistan and Afghanistan don't recognize our right to exist!
Charlie: Calm down.
Zvi: We just got done fighting a war against Egypt, and everyone who has ever tried to kill me or my family has been trained in Saudi Arabia!
Gust: That's not entirely true Zvi. I mean, some of them were trained by us.
- In Dead Again, Carlisle says this to Mike Church when Mike explains in their past lives, Mike was Margaret Strauss, and Grace was Roman Strauss.
- In The Last Starfighter, Grigg explains that they'll be facing wave after wave of Ko-Dan fighters, but the biggest threat is the communication turret on the bottom of the Ko-Dan command ship, which allows the fighters to act as a single coordinated unit.
Alex: So to get the fighters we've gotta get the turret, but to get the turret we've gotta get through the fighters. We're dead.
- From Argo, (although the stock phrase itself is not actually used):
- In Philadelphia, Joe Miller's catchphrase is some variation of "Explain this to me like I'm a six-year-old," followed by him repeating what the other person said in a way that makes it sound much less reasonable.
- Eve of Destruction: When Dr. Simmons realizes the pattern behind EVE's movements because her own memories were implanted in the gynoid, McQuade has to get it straight.
McQuade: Let me just get this straight — you're saying this device of yours acted out one of your teenage sex fantasies?
- Who Framed Roger Rabbit: "Let me get this straight: You think that my boss, R.K. Maroon, dropped the safe on Marvin Acme's head so he could get his hands on Toontown?"
- Timothy Zahn's Star Wars Expanded Universe books, starting with The Thrawn Trilogy, tend to have a few things explained thusly. It's part of his Signature Style. Possibly justified in some cases; Thrawn tends to refer to knowledge so esoteric, or seemingly trivial, that explanation is warranted.
Character A: The enemy is using System Z!
Character B: System Z? You mean [brief explanation]? That System Z?
Character A: Yep.
- In The Mysterious Benedict Society, the eponymous group forms a plan that's described as being "bold, ill-formed, and likely to fail, and all of them knew it." "So let me just review the plan..." states Constance and launches into a series of nitpicks about all of the problems with it. "'So I ask you again,' she concluded, 'exactly how are we supposed to distract the Helpers?' 'Just be yourself,' Kate said with a sigh."
- In the first The Kingdom Keepers book, Finn's mother says this line after Finn explains to her what's been going on, but he cuts her off, saying that she won't understand.
- Animorphs frequently had Marco invoke this trope, followed by a declaration of its insanity. Occasionally used with other characters.
- Hermione brings this up in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.
Hermione: You mean to tell me that you used an unknown handwritten spell just to see what it would do?
- Pops up in the book Sonic The Hedgehog And The Silicon Warriors as Sonic tries to convince his latest side-kick to enter the remains of Flying Fortress Zone.
Iggy: You want me to go in there with you because some undefined weird sense of yours says that it might be dangerous?
Iggy: Okay, that sounds fair. What are we waiting for?
- The Belgariad: Happens when Garion starts asking Lelldorin some questions about this plan he stumbled upon. When he sums it up Lelldorin is horrified.
Garion: "What it comes down to, then, is that a stranger tells you that the king's planning to take your land. Then he gives you a plan to kill the king and start a war with Tolnedra; and to make sure you succeed with his plan, he gives money. Is that about it? Weren't any of you just the least bit suspicious?"
- In Diplomatic Immunity, Imperial Auditor Miles Vorkosigan has to interrupt his honeymoon to deal with an international incident.
"Go on," sighed Miles. "What happened with your patrol?"
"I still don't have their own firsthand reports, my lord," said Brun stiffly. "The quaddies have only let one unarmed medical officer visit them in their current place of confinement. Shots were exchanged, both stunner and plasma fire, inside Security Post Three. Quaddies swarmed the place, and our men were overwhelmed and taken prisoner."
The "swarming" quaddies had included, not unnaturally in Miles's view, most of the Graf Station professional and volunteer fire brigades. Plasma fire. In a civilian space station. Oh, my aching head.
"So," said Miles gently, "after we shot up the police station and set the habitat on fire, what did we do for an encore?"
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
- Used by Jenny in the first Season Finale.
Jenny: Okay, so this Master guy tried to open the Hellmouth. But he got stuck in it, and now all the signs are reading that he's gonna get out, which opens the Hellmouth, which brings the demons, which ends the world.
Giles: Yes. That about sums it up, yes.
- Once when Buffy rubs it in Snyder's face after getting back to school:
Buffy: So let me get this straight. I'm really back in school because the school board overruled you. Wow. That's like having your whole ability to do this job called into question, when you think about it.
- And once by Spike in the episode "Crush":
Spike: So, uh, let me get this straight. Darla got mojo'd back from the beyond... you re-vamped her... and now she and you are working on turning Angel into his own bad self again.
- Subverted repeatedly in "Spiral": Glory, the Big Bad, and Ben, the nice doctor, are the same person. There is a spell on them that makes humans (and possibly other, but not vampires) forget this. Spike explains the curse, but the Scoobies continually forget it.
- Used by Jenny in the first Season Finale.
- And once in Angel, by (of course) Cordy:
Cordelia: So, let me get this straight. Angel gets the visions of people who are gonna die, and he tells you, and you go out and slay, and — this is how you make your living? This — got to be the suckiest job in the world.
- Will & Grace: "OK, so let me get this gay..."
- In House:
Foreman: Let me get this straight, instead of picking up the phone and talking to a patient for 5 minutes, you gave up on sleep and you drove in here?
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: From the season six episode "The Sound of Her Voice":
Jake: So let me get this straight — you have fifteen cases of stolen Denevan crystals...
Quark: Allegedly stolen.
Jake: ...allegedly stolen crystals hidden somewhere down in Cargo Bay Three. And you're planning to sell them to a Nausicaan friend of yours — who just happens to be a known criminal...
Quark: Alleged criminal.
Jake: So, how are you going to get an "alleged" criminal onto the station and deliver the "allegedly" stolen goods to him without Odo getting wind of it? And what does any of this have to do with his anniversary?
- Star Trek: Voyager:
- While Simulating an old movie theater in "Repression":
B'Elanna: Protective lenses?
Tom: These will make the images on the screen appear three-dimensional.
B'Elanna: Let me get this straight — You've gone to all this trouble to program a three-dimensional environment that projects a two-dimensional image and now you're asking me to wear these to to make it look three-dimensional again?
- Also, from "Bride of Chaotica!":
Captain: Let me get this straight, transdimensional aliens have mistaken your Captain Proton simulation for reality?
Paris: Yes ma'am.
Captain: And now an armed conflict has broken out between these aliens and Chaotica's holographic army?
Paris: [completely deadpan] Yes ma'am. [half-beat] His army of evil.
- While Simulating an old movie theater in "Repression":
- Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: The episode's case is summed up in the first scene after The Teaser and the opening theme:
Captain Cragen: Let me see if I got this straight — some girl is being sexually abused by some guy somewhere in Manhattan?
Elliot Stabler: Something like that.
- Law & Order does this at least once an episode — usually twice: at the twenty-minute mark (just before catching the suspect, so set up Why This Crime Is Bad) and the forty minute mark (just before moving to the courtroom, to set up Why This Guy Is or Isn't That Bad).
- Done quite clumsily in Charmed. Just when the antics are starting to get interesting, Piper puts her hand on her hips and says they still need to defeat the monster of the week. It wouldn't be so bad if she could have some real danger (of the monster) of annoyance (of the antics) in her delivery. It just comes across as flat, and a way to remind the viewers of the plan they made just ten minutes before.
- Red Dwarf:
- While not the actual plan, but in response to the crew trying to explain around Rimmer's temporary insanity in "Quarantine": "So let me get this straight. You want to fly on a magic carpet, to see the King of the Potato People, and plead with him for your freedom, and you're telling me you're completely sane?"
- Played annoyingly straight in "Rimmerworld") where Rimmer does this repeatedly in the first part of the episode.
Rimmer: So let me get this straight. If we board that ship and we get captured, we're finished. However, if we board that ship, don't get captured but the superstructure disintegrates around us, we are finished. On the other hand, if we board that ship, don't get captured, and the superstructure doesn't disintegrate around us, but we can't find any fuel, we are in fact finished.
- The West Wing:
- "The State Dinner". At the end of The Teaser, C.J. recaps everything that's going on (that will unfold as the episode does), and laments how the press corps has other priorities:
C.J.: So, let me see if I have this... a hurricane's picked up speed and power and is heading for Georgia, management and labor are coming here to work out a settlement to avoid a crippling strike that will begin at midnight tonight, and the government's planning a siege on 18 to 40 of its citizens, all the while we host a state dinner for the President of Indonesia.
[sounds of assent from the others]
C.J.: Amazingly, you know what I'll get asked most often today? [turns to a reporter hovering nearby] Black suede and velvet Manolo Blahnik slides with a rhinestone and mother of pearl toe buckle. [reporter scribbles, thanks C.J., and leaves]
- There's also this memorable exchange from the second part of the Season 2 premiere "In The Shadow Of Two Gunmen, Part 1", after Margaret reveals she can imitate President Bartlett's signature:
Leo: You can sign the President's name?
Leo: On a document removing him from power and handing it to someone else?
Margaret: Yes! [off Leo's death glare] Or... do you think the White House counsel would say that was a bad idea?
Leo: I think the White House counsel would say it was a coup d'état.
Margaret: I'd probably end up doing some time for that.
Leo: I would think! And what the hell were you doing, practicing the President's signature?
Margaret: [as she hastily exits] It was just for fun!
- "The State Dinner". At the end of The Teaser, C.J. recaps everything that's going on (that will unfold as the episode does), and laments how the press corps has other priorities:
- This is usually how Scully reacts to Mulder's paranormal theories on The X-Files. One clip show features a collection of all the times Scully has a line with some variant of, "Mulder, are you saying that [ghosts/aliens/the Loch Ness Monster/werewolves] did it?" The collection takes several minutes.
- Used almost invariably at the top of the third act of NCIS, apparently to fill in those who missed the first thirty minutes. Usually the agents are in front of the squad room's plasma screen, summing up the case so far.
- Fringe practically lives off this trope, at least in the first season, to sum up it's more ridiculous plot points.
Peter: So you're telling me that this guy was exposed to X, which caused his body to Y, and your genius plan to fix this is to Z?
Walter: [surprised at being questioned] Yes.
Peter: [sarcastically] Of course!
- Used quite frequently in Stargate SG-1, using the exact words of the trope.
- In "There but for the Grace of God":
O'Neill: Okay, wait a minute, wait a minute, let me get this straight. You want us to give up our last chance to strike back at the Goa'uld, so we can save ourselves in... what... what?
Carter: Alternate Reality.
Jackson: Not just yourselves, everyone on Earth!
O'Neill: Your Earth.
Jackson: The Jack O'Neill that I know, would do it.
O'Neill: Well apparently, you and I have never met.
- In "The Ties That Bind":
Landry: So let me get this straight. You need to get this ship, to get the power coil, to get the necklace, to get this guy to tell you how to undo whatever is keeping you two connected?
Mitchell: Yeah, that about sums it up.
- In "Ripple Effect":
Black Mitchell: Now let me get this straight. We figured that you guys would try to escape and we set this trap for you, not realizing that you'd figured out that we'd figure you out and you'd set... your own.
- In "There but for the Grace of God":
- White Collar. "By the Book" has Neal explaining the perfect exchange with Peter's only question being "What happens to the middle man?"
- Chuck has General Beckman use this at least once, observe:
General Beckman: Let me get this straight, a girl just walked in off the street and picked up the asset?
- A hilarious example in "Rashomama":
Undersheriff Jeffrey McKeen: Let me see it I understand this correctly: You let one of the members of your team drive his personal vehicle to a crime scene investigation. And then, even though there was a perfectly good crime scene vehicle there, that personal car was crammed with every bit of evidence collected at a major murder investigation, because two of you were maxed out on overtime. And then the driver of said car — instead of securing that evidence in the lab — gave priority to his need for runny eggs. And the aforementioned vehicle was stolen from a parking lot filled with police cars. Is there anything I missed?
Grissom: Just this: Even if we recover the vehicle, the chain of custody has been broken, so all the evidence has been compromised. No judge will allow any of it to be admitted into court. Also, we released the crime scene, so it too is compromised, leaving us nothing to go back for.
McKeen: Thank you for clarifying the situation.
- And another in "4 X 4".
Brass: Let me get this straight, Larry. An old man refuses to let you steal his money, so you jack a Hummer and try to run over his taco stand?
Grissom: I think this is the dumbest thing we've ever heard.
- A hilarious example in "Rashomama":
- Happens a few times on Leverage, usually by the authorities who arrest the mark after the team has set them up. A short and sweet one was the climax of "Leverage S 02 E 01 The Beantown Bailout Job";
Somebody tricked you into bringing a briefcase full of evidence of your own crimes straight to the police?
So, your story is; you didn't flee the country because of embezzlement or fraud. You fled because you thought terrorists were trying to kill you for secret stealth technology. But you didn't report that to the FBI because you believed you stole the world's largest airplane. Out of a museum. Which you then crashed.
- But perhaps the Pièce De Résistance was "Leverage S 05 E 01 The Very Big Bird Job";
- In It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Charlie will always be completely confused by the current plan the gang has devised off-screen, forcing someone to explain it to him as if for the twelfth time.
- A humorous example in Breaking Bad when Hank is interrogating a suspect.
Hank: So, let me get this straight, Russell. You got this meth from "some guy", in khaki pants, who — you're eighty percent sure — had a mustache. And... that's it. That's your brain working at maximum capacity?
- Doctor Who:
Let me get this straight, a thing that looks like a police box, standing in a junkyard, it can move anywhere in time and space?"Sally: Okay, let me get my head 'round this. You're reading aloud from a transcript of a conversation you're still having?
- In the very first story, "An Unearthly Child", Ian tries to wrap his head around the TARDIS:
- Bones: "The Man with the Bone"
Cullen: Okay, Let Me See If I Get This Straight. The pirate bones you recovered came from the Jeffersonian to start with...
Goodman: 300-year-old bones stolen from our own pirate exhibit.
Cullen: ... and then recovered by one of your own people...
Booth: Doctor Hodgins.
Cullen: ... who brought them back to the Jeffersonian... where they were stolen again?
Booth: Re-stolen... sir.
Cullen: You got a security problem, Doctor Goodman.
Goodman: And when I find out who did this, you may have a murder problem.
- The Wire used this a few times (usually with the variation "let me understand this"). A great example from the series finale:
Carcetti: So, um, let me just... understand this. Um... so I've been going out there for weeks, slamming the governor for his neglect of the homeless and declaring at how we will stop at nothing to find the person responsible for preying on the homeless, [Norman, who has been valiantly trying not to laugh, loses it] and all — hey, Norman, this is my ass here!
Norman: [pulling himself together] That's true, boss. But it does have a certain charm to it. They manufactured an issue to get paid; we manufactured an issue to get you elected governor. Everybody's getting what they need behind some make-believe.
- "Now let me get this straight, you put the lime in the coconut and drank 'em both up?"
So, do it again "and you'll feel better." (Does that seem right to you?)
- The first words of Anberlin's "A Day Late": "So let me get this straight, say now you loved me all along."
- "Arguing with Thermometers" by Enter Shikari, a protest song about exploiting the polar icecaps for the sake of acquiring the oil beneath it. : "So let me get this straight, as we witness the icecaps melting, instead of it spurning us to change our ways; we're gonna invest in military hardware to fight for the remaining oil that's left beneath the ice? Well what happens when it's all gone?! You haven't thought this through, have you boys?"
- Happened in Geist after Raimi rescued Bryson. May be justified in that 1), Raimi is a Heroic Mime and 2) Raimi had been turned into a ghost and was possessing a female nurse. They might have thought that going right to the next action scene was too jarring, but they couldn't show Raimi talking.
- Uncharted 2: Among Thieves has this exchange:
- An example from Thief: Deadly Shadows:
Garrett: Let me see if I've got this right. You want me to find Gamall's lair, learn what she wants your treasure for, and find and destroy this final glyph? Anything else?
- During the ending of Mass Effect 2's "Arrival" DLC:
Admiral Hackett: All I know is I sent you to break Amanda Kenson out of prison, and now an entire system's been destroyed. I hope you can fill in the logic between those two events.
- Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney:
- Said by Phoenix Wright in the case "Reunion and Turnabout" when he presses Lotta on her testimony, which describes something he did.
- Phoenix will use this when trying to verify details of a witness's testimony, right before showing evidence to prove contradictions.
- In Dangan Ronpa, the culprit of Chapter 3 says this when being accused of being the mastermind behind the murders, dismissing the accusation as a joke.
"So what you are saying, then, is that I specifically chose to work together with Hifumi. The idea that I would choose to spend any amount of time interacting with him... That I would go within ten feet of that shit-for-brains, that lazy, worthless goddamn idiot! (Collects self) *Ahem* Ah, pardonnez-moi."
- Red vs. Blue:
- Tucker is quite accurate in his summary of events soon after Tex arrives.
- As is Grif, later on in the series, discussing a plan.
Grif: Let me get this straight: we're going to steal a bomb from our enemies — a bomb that can be remotely detonated I might add — and then we're gonna bring it back to our base, and all huddle around it. What a great plan.
Simmons: Well sure, it sounds stupid when you say it like that.
- Episode 13 starts out this way, with Tucker using the trope.
- Done multiple times in "The Greatest Caper Ever" by Strong Bad and The Cheat. Normally, when this trope gets used by Homestar Runner, it's someone translating Pom Pom or The Cheat for the benefit of the audience, but in this case it's justified; Strong Bad and The Cheat are trying to retrace their steps to figure out A) how they got Homestar onto an ice floe somewhere in the Arctic Circle, and B) how they have satellite coverage of Homestar on his ice flow in the Arctic.
- In Holiday Wars, Tegan has this reaction when Labor Day says The Easter Bunny is trying to capture her.
- 8-Bit Theater:
- Red Mage sums up a predicament to himself using "Let's review" as his opener. Somewhat justified in that he had just messed with his stats to give himself super engineering skills, then couldn't understand what he made once his stats were normal again. And like in Real Life, sometimes it's best to stop and try to explain things to yourself, at least if they're sufficiently confusing to begin with.
- Played straight in this one issue.
- Also here:
Black Mage: Okay, let me see if I've got this. [...] I "get" to learn magic abilities if I am lucky enough to survive them being cast on me. So far, this consists of a crotch kick and puking out my organs. You get total enlightenment by looking in a box.
Red Mage: Yup.
Black Mage: I'm going to choke on my endless rage now. Excuse me. GHKK!
- Accidentally defied in Dubious Company. Walter starts complaining about the Oracle's uselessly vague prophecy, and ends up filling in all the missing parts.
- Done by the Reverend in Schlock Mercenary when Tagon admits to kissing his girlfriend. Given the context, it's more like the Reverend is trying to figure out what exactly is Tagon confessing to.
- South Park does this often.
"Ah all right, just let me get this straight: the head of Homeland Security ordered you to fly us, five kids, to Peru, but had you land way up in the Andes Mountains of Peru so that other government people could meet us and then... somehow tell us how to go to the capital of Peru, way over in Lima, and take down their government. And that makes sense to you?"
- All Grown Up!, "Susie Sings The Blues": after the school vice-principal has just discovered that Tommy and Chuckie have been playing pranks on him, the first line of the scene where they're in the office goes thusly: "So this whole thing was to take risks and break Chuckie out of some pathetic rut he's in."
- Daria, "Arts 'N Crass". When Principal Li calls Daria's mother to tell her about a serious offense committed by Daria and her friend Jane Lane, Mama Bear quickly surmises the truth of the matter:
Helen Morgendorffer: All right, Ms. Li, let me make sure I have this straight. You took my daughter's poster from her, altered its content, exhibited it against her will, and are now threatening discipline because you claim she defaced her own property, which you admit to stealing?
Ms. Li: [flustered] That's not what I said at all!
Helen: Ms. Li, are you familiar with the phrase "violation of civil liberties"?
Ms. Li: I...
Helen: And the phrase "big fat lawsuit"?
[Daria smiles as she sees Ms. Li go down in flames]
- Avatar: The Last Airbender:
- Happens a lot in Futurama, usually said to the Professor. For some reason, the Professor usually interrupts and explains again:
Leela: So what you think you just explained to us is that...
Farnsworth: Correct! This box contains our own universe!
- The eponymous penguin of Tennessee Tuxedo And His Tales would often restate exactly what someone had just said to him.
- My Little Pony:
Pinkie Pie: So let me get this straight. It's pretty dark. It's kinda scary. And it reeeeally stinks. [nervous laugh] And they want me to follow them where?
- From The Princess Promenade:
- From the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic episode "Hearts and Hooves Day", there is this exchange at the end of the song "The Perfect Stallion".
Sweetie Belle: We did it, girls! We found the one! Who will send our teacher's heart a-flutter!
Apple Bloom: Wait a minute, let me get this straight. Are you talking about my brother?
- From Metalocalypse, we get this gem when Dethklok cluelessly shops for food at a grocery store after their personal chef got torn apart by helicopter blades and Pickles finds the lobster counter:
Pickles: Let me get straight: you put these in boiling water then they shriek, turn red and die?!? This is the most metal thing I ever heard in my life.
- A variant of this phrase "Let's get the facts" was one of Keisha's catch phrases in The Magic School Bus, usually said when the class is going through something that should be impossible.
- In Darkwing Duck, a time machine accidentally drags Gosalyn into a future in which her disappearance drove Darkwing to become a Well-Intentioned Extremist. She asks him to send her back in the machine and fix things, but he doesn't see it that way:
Darkwarrior Duck: Let me get this straight. You want me to release two known criminals, give them an incredibly powerful vehicle, and let them trash history so that I, Darkwarrior Duck, will never even exist?
- In The Fairly OddParents! special "Timmy's Secret Wish", Jorgen summarizes the effects of Timmy's secret wish to stop everyone from aging.
Jorgen: So let me get this straight. You and everyone else on earth are actually fifty years older!?
Cosmo: Do the math, Jorgen. 10 + 50 is 13! You're fine, Timmy!
- The Simpsons episode "Homie the Clown" gives us this gem.
Financial Advisor: Let me get this straight. You took all the money you made franchising your name, and bet it against the Harlem Globetrotters?
Krusty: I thought the Generals were due!
- From The Amazing World of Gumball episode "The Limit":
Nicole: Let me get this straight. I asked you to finally step us as a father and set a good example for your children. And the way you interpreted that was to take them shoplifting?
- In Donkey Kong Country episode "From Zero to Hero", Cranky Kong sums up the plot;
- Kaeloo: Mr. Cat frequently puts everything he hears into words that make it Better Than It Sounds, sometimes using the trope name. For example, when Kaeloo explains how to play prison-ball, he says "You aim for your opponent's face, you smash it open and it's the victim who goes in the can?".