Because even the blind can't resist such a prank sometimes.
A type of abuse The Bully
can inflict on others. The swirlie is portrayed half the time as a real shot of some poor kid getting his head stuck in the toilet, and the other half as a bully simply mentioning the word "swirly" to the cringing dismay of all the bully victims in earshot.
If the victim is lucky, no one used the toilet first...
See also The Can Kicked Him
for more serious injuries.
Anime and Manga
- Rare case in Kyo Kara Maoh; the main character get his head dumped in the toilet only to end up in the magical kingdom where he is ruler.
- An even squickier example in Ichi the Killer: in a flashback, a bunch of bullies shove the title character's face in a toilet already full of poop, trying to force him to eat it.
- Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt: Panty and Scanty give one to each other as they're fighting.
- Bullies in Vitamin force Sawako's head into a toilet after dumping her cellphone in it, and flushing it while she's in it.
Film - Live Action
- In the Sin City story, "The Big Fat Kill," the Jerkass Jackie-Boy gets his head shoved into the toilet by Dwight McCarthy as payback and humiliation for abusing his ex, Shellie. This is part of what kicks off the main plot, as Jackie-Boy doesn't take humiliation well and seeks to take it out on someone, preferably a woman, and leads his boys into Old Town.
Jackie-Boy: You're making a big mistake.
Dwight: Yeah, well you already made a big mistake yourself. You didn't flush.
- In a flashback in the first issue of Ultimate Fantastic Four, a Gang of Bullies does this to Reed Richards. Ben Grimm ends up going Bully Hunter on them in retribution.
- In the Batman story arc "Heart of Hush", Batman interrogates Scarecrow with a toilet and the electrical wire from the lightbulb in his cell. Ouch.
- In the first Harry Potter book:
: They flush people's heads down the toilet first day at Stonewall. Want to practice? Harry
: No thanks. The poor toilet's never had anything as horrible as your head in it — it might be sick. Narration
: At which point Harry ran away before Dudley could figure out what Harry had said
- In the Animorphs series, Tobias mentions that he became friends with Jake because the latter once saved him from a couple of bullies that were about to give him a swirlie.
- The Seventh Heaven episode "Saturday" has Mary Anne Riviera dish one of these out on Michael Towner, who had been sexually harassing her the entire episode, with his and her teammates watching. Comes directly after he gives her a "Reason You Suck" Speech.
- The FOX show Glee has two notable instances of this trope. The first came from a promotional video for the show in which Puck repeatedly attempts to dunk the flamboyant Kurt's head into the toilet. However, after pretending to negotiate to be dunked in an environmentally-friendly toilet, Kurt fools Puck into thinking a sexy girl is in the men's room before running away, gloating that he'll never let it happen.
- In an episode of Frasier, Niles and Frasier talk about how this happened to both of them in prep school - apparently to a chant of, "There goes Crane, down the drain." When the boys that bullied them come to Frasier's apartment to repair his toilet, Niles makes amends with the brother who bullied him, and Frasier gets his own back by sticking the other bully's head in the toilet. At the end of the episode, Martin fixes the toilet himself, and quips to Eddie, "Don't drink that! Some guy just had his head in there!"
- A Season 8 episode of the late MADtv had a sketch called "Swirlie Time," in which two bullies gave swirlies to boys coming into and out of the bathroom VIA a hijacked school security camera.
- There was one episode of Law & Order where this was used as an interrogation technique in hopes of rescuing a kidnapped girl.
- One episode of My Name Is Earl begins with Earl allowing Randy to give him a swirly in the Crabshack bathroom to make up for having done the same to Randy when he was five. When Earl thanks Darnell for cleaning the toilet first, Darnell explains that the last person who was given a swirly in one of those toilets ended up with a strange bat-disease.
- An episode of Monk revolves around the notion of Monk doing a job for who used to be his bully in elementary school. Monk has a flashback to a time when said bully gave him a swirlie in the bathroom, complete with shot of it happening.
- A fourth season episode of Supernatural has a girl give a cheerleader who'd been rude to her a swirly until she died.
- There was also the episode "Jus in Bello" where the brothers poured holy water into a prison toilet to save a demon-possessed man VIA dunked the man's head in there. The actor that played the victim talked about the experience.(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrVwwXkioEo)
- In the third season of the television series Queer as Folk, one of the main characters gives a swirly to his little nephew, who not only tried to take cash from his wallet, but was also spouting homophobic slurs taught to him (Or so the main character infers) by their grandmother.
- The show Shameless has Episode 7 beginning with a pair of thugs, (implied to be loan sharks) dunking the main character's head in an already-used toilet. The leader says they would've flushed first if he hadn't tried to run away.
- In an episode of the MTV show The Dudesons, the consequences the two losers had to face for failing one of the challenges was getting their heads (Faces submerged as well) in toilets filled with.....well, you don't wanna know what was in there.
- The Amanda Show had the recurring segment "The Girls' Room" where Sheila, one of the girls hosting, would give one of the guest characters a swirlie, either at the request of the other girls, or because she simply disliked them.
- The Simpsons: one time when it was the last day of school a Montage showed various people/places in the school counting down the last 10 seconds; one of these was Milhouse, as he got one of these courtesy the school bullies. In another episode, we see Jimbo Jones doing this to Bart.
- In an episode of Recess where Spinelli is accused of throwing a rock at Randall, her punishment if found guilty is a swirlie.
- The part Spinelli and co. are most worried about is the ostracism and social stigma against having received one, not the swirlie itself. Ironically, when it's found out that Randall lied at some point during the trial, he is the one who ends up getting the swirlie. Since no one apart from Ms. Finster really likes him anyway, the public shaming aspect of the swirlie is a moot point.
- An episode of King of the Hill revolves around a team of bullies that continuously impede Bobby's attempts to ask Khannie out to the school dance throughout the episode. They attempt to give him a swirly in one of the bathroom toilets, with constant protest from Bobby. The act itself isn't shown, but Bobby walking home with wet hair tells the tale.
- In the Batman: The Animated Series episode "Joker's Millions", Batman tortures the newly wealthy Joker's accountant into divulging the clown's whereabouts by sticking the guy's head in an Iceberg Lounge toilet and flushing. Repeatedly.
- Used a couple of times in The Fairly OddParents. One notable time is when Francis threatened Timmy, only that Timmy didn't even feel threatened, and Francis ends up getting swirlied out of fear.
- Horrifyingly enough, evil babysitter Vicky once gave one to her own sister!
- In the episode "This is my Jam" of Regular Show Rigby does this to himself on purpose to see if the water could get the song Summertime Lovin' out of his head.
- In the "Crank Call" episode of Beavis and Butt-Head, the pair constantly call a man by the name of "Harry Sachz" and flush their toilet. Several weeks of this drive him to near insanity, and he ends up thinking the calls are coming from Stuart's house, and that his dad was the culprit. He starts out by shoving his head in the toilet and flushing, asking him if he likes the way it sounds. Take note that he's so pissed that he doesn't just push his head in, he grabs him by the ankles and jams him straight down.
- In the Codename: Kids Next Door episode "Operation: F.O.U.N.T.A.I.N.", the Delightful Children tried to get information from a student named Leona; she wouldn't talk initially, so since they happened to be in the school girls' room, they told their henchman Lunk to "introduce her to Mr. Swirlie". After he did, they threatened to show her "Mr. Swirlie's downtown office" (which meant a rather filthy toilet) at which point she talked. (This leads to a Brick Joke much later in the episode, where the heroes find Leona and the villains at the Fountain of Youth; after a fight sequence, the Delightful Children are dumped in it, reducing them to infancy, and Leona calls it "Mr. Swirlie's corporate office".)