troperville

tools

toys

Wiki Headlines
We've switched servers and will be updating the old code over the next couple months, meaning that several things might break. Please report issues here.

main index

Narrative

Genre

Media

Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
random
Slogan Yelling Megaphone Guy
For instance, I was teaching Sam peace chants for a long time, when he was only two. It was during the war in the Persian Gulf; I was a little angry.
"What do we want?" I'd call to Sam.
"Peace," he'd shout dutifully.
"And when do we want it?" I'd ask.
"Now!" he'd say, and I'd smile and toss him a fish.

— Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

What do we want?

A trope about us!

When do we want it?

Now!

Listen up, TV Tropes! I can't believe you guys forgot about me, the slogan-yelling megaphone guy, the most important part of any large public demonstration! How are people supposed to know what we're mad about? Wave signs around? That's lame! Noise is where it's at, the louder the better!

In fictional depictions, the audio quality is inversely proportional to how funny the scene is, so if it's a comedy, the guy standing next to me will always end up with busted eardrums since I'm answering his questions through the megaphone, but when I'm addressing the audience at large, expect a lot of— loud pitched squeals—and don't forget— no sound comes out for whatever reason! smacks the megaphone a few times

Start listing some examples, folks! This trope isn't about to write itself, you know!

Examples:

Film
  • Buckaroo Banzai. Lord John Whorfin uses a microphone to address his Red Lectroid followers.
    Whorfin: What is the greatest joy?
    Followers: The joy of duty!
    Whorfin: Louder!
    Followers: The joy of duty!
    [and so on and so forth]
    Whorfin: Where are we going?
    Followers: Planet Ten!
    Whorfin: When?
    Followers: Real soon!
  • The Vietnam protesters in Forrest Gump get better audio equipment, but it's still sabotaged when Forrest goes up to say something important.
  • Not a protest, but in Spaceballs Dark Helmet orders his troops to (literally) comb the desert via megaphone. Colonel Sanders questions the wisdom of this, only to get a loud "WHAT?" through said megaphone.
  • The 1982 film Who Dares Wins (aka The Final Option) opens with an anti-nuclear march during which a man brandishing a megaphone (later revealed to be a government undercover agent) is shot in the throat by a crossbow bolt.

Literature
  • Reg Shoe from Discworld is the go-to guy for protests. He explains the basics of sloganeering in The Fifth Elephant:
    'It's got to have bounce. And rhythm. Like "Whadda we want? Dum-dee-dum-dee. When do we want it? Now!" See? You need one simple demand. Let's try it again. Whadda we want?'
    The watchmen looked at one another, no one quite wanting to be the first.
    'Another drink?' someone volunteered.
    'Yeah!' said someone at the back. 'When do we want it? NOW!'
    • Actually mostly averted in Night Watch. Reg does shout "You can take our lives but you'll never take our freedom!" just before he gets killed, but most of the "rebels" are just ordinary people trying to keep themselves safe behind their barricade. They do come up with "Truth, Justice, Freedom, Reasonably-Priced Love, And A Hard-Boiled Egg" but nobody shouts it.
  • In Anne Lamott's book Bird by Bird, she writes about teaching her young son peace chants, and at one point when she asks him, "What do we want?" he responds, "Lunch."

Live-Action TV

Music
  • Sampled in The Dingees' "Street vs State": "What do we want?" "PEACE!" "When do we want it?" "NOW!"

Radio
  • The Now Show
    • Parodied in their discussion of the UK protests:
      What do we want?
      EVERYTHING BETTER!
      How do we pay for it?
      UM ... NOT SURE!
    • And also in a discussion of how UK protests have a long history:
      AN END TO POVERTY!
      When wanteth we it?
      FORTHWITH!

Western Animation
  • Carl Squared Skye is helping Carl protest about... something and a megaphone is used.
  • Danny Phantom plays with the trope along in-universe popularity lines.
    Danny: What do we want?
    Sam and Tucker: [uncertainly] ...good music?
    Danny: When do we want it?
    Sam and Tucker: Now?
    [Dash takes the mic from Danny]
    Dash: What do we want?
    Student body: Good music!
    Dash: When do we want it?
    Student body: NOW!
  • Parodied and inversed on Futurama, "Jurassic Bark":
    Crowd: What do you want?
    Fry: Fry's dog!
    Crowd: When do you want it?
    Fry: Fry's dog!
  • The Simpsons did it:
    • "Itchy and Scratchy and Marge":
      Marge: What do we want?
      Crowd: Less and less violence in children's programming!
      Marge: When do we want it?
      Crowd: Now!
    • "Last Exit to Springfield" (The One With SNPP employees on strike):
      Carl: What do we want?
      Employees: More equitable treatment at the hands of management!
      Carl: When do we want it?
      Employees: Soon!
    • Parodied in another episode:
      What do you want?
      The gradual phase-out of animal testing over the next three years!
      When do we want it?
      Over the next three years!
  • Penny Proud of The Proud Family leads the neighborhood kids in a protest, refusing to due chores until they get higher allowances. "What do we want?" "More money!" "How do we want it?" "In cash!"
  • In Archer, the ISIS employees want to strike for higher pay, but have trouble coming up with a protest that doesn't reveal the location of their spy agency:
    What do we want?
    Unfair!
    When do we want it?
    Change!

Real Life
  • A counter-protest against the Westboro Baptist Church.
    What do we want?
    GAY SEX!
    When do we want it?
    NOW!

  • At a parody protest rally;
    What do we want?
    ''Time travel!"
    When do we want it?
    "That's irrelevant!"


The SlackerCharacters as DeviceSmall Annoying Creature

random
TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy
12712
23