Tantrum Throwing

"I'm so angry I could just throw a rock
at that poster of David Cassidy!"
Sometimes there are just not enough rocks.

Basically, this is when enraged characters start throwing objects around to express their frustration. They're throwing a tantrum, and throwing objects in the process.

Not to be confused with just being about tantrums in general; the title is a pun.

See also Trash the Set, Punch a Wall, Flipping the Table.


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  • The Panda from the Never Say No to Panda campaigne throws a worker's keyboard, after smashing it against his desk.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Ouran Highschool Host Club has one episode in which this happens at least three times.
  • Index throws things at Touma a number of times in A Certain Magical Index, often because of things that weren't really his fault to begin with.
  • Light Novel/{{Baccano!}}: It's a running joke that mob bosses throw ashtrays at their underlings in a tantrum, with identical camera angles.
  • Durarara!!: Heiwajima Shizuo often throws impossibly heavy things when somebody makes him mad. Vending machines are pretty popular with him. He first discovered his super strength while attempting to throw a refrigerator at his brother.
  • Hanaukyō Maid Tai episode 13 (OVA). When Taro goes to talk to Grace, she asks what he wants. When he can't tell her immediately, she starts throwing things at him and tells him that if he doesn't want anything he should get out.
  • Dance in the Vampire Bund: After an argument with Akira over some ethical compromises note , Mina does not grab something off her desk and throw it across the room when he storms out. She grabs the (massive hardwood) desk and throws it across the room.
  • The novelization of Code Geass says that Nunnally has temper tantrums and breaks stuff whenever Lelouch is gone, but doesn't remember doing so and is confused by the mysterious cuts on her hands. This behavior is exclusive to the novels and is apparently intended to further suggest how screwed up everyone in the universe is.

    Films — Animation 
  • There's a hilarious one in Megamind with Roxie hurling things at Metro Man, and since he's Nigh Invulnerable he doesn't even blink as the stuff she throws keeps shattering against his face.
  • Bad Cop from The LEGO Movie; whenever he gets angry, he throws around an office swivel chair. seems to have... issues with rolling chairs. At one point, he throws a minute long tantrum (a rather long time considering how the humor of the film is paced) all the while juggling that poor chair. He manages to brain a poor robo-cop in the background with it by accident. Mind you, it was right after a police chase, so it seems he brings chairs around just to abuse them.
  • In Ratatouille, Rémy starts throwing things around in the restaurant backyard after Linguini spurns him. It doesn't go very far since he's rather small, but he manages to break a wine bottle.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • When Mildred leaves Phillip for the last time in Of Human Bondage (1934), she wrecks his room, slices up his paintings, and burns the railroad bonds that constitute his life savings.
  • The Shawshank Redemption: Norton throwing rocks around during his "it's a conspiracy" rant made a hole in a poster on the wall, revealing Andy's escape from prison. The Family Guy parody of this scene provides the page quote and image.
  • In Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, Anakin does this while ranting about how Obi-Wan's "holding him back."
  • Citizen Kane: Upon his wife leaving him, Kane goes in her room and smashes/throws everything he sees.
  • In Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, the Mad Hatter does this in the Red Queen's Castle.
  • Walk Hard: Standard event when Dewey experiences some life setback.
  • Bridesmaids: Annie has an epic one leading up to the wedding.
  • In The Room, at the height of Johnny's angry tirade upon breaking up with Lisa he throws his own television set right through the window out onto the street.
  • Lester in American Beauty, throwing a plate of food against the wall.
  • Detective Loki from Prisoners throws his stuff off his desk then smashes his keyboard in frustration, because his interrogation of Bob Taylor (the suspect) ends in the suspect's suicide.
  • Late in Forrest Gump, Jenny returns to what's left of the house where she was sexually abused by her father and starts throwing rocks at it.
  • In Bound for Glory, after being forced by his radio station to provide a set list of non-controversial, non-political songs, Woody Guthrie trashes a store room.

  • Gustav Adolf does this in 1632. It's stated that he does this so often his quarters are deliberately stocked with cheap furniture.
  • In A Brother's Price Ren's first husband, Keifer, threw violent item-smashing tantrums, called names, and withheld sex whenever he didn't get what he wanted. When she gets engaged to Jerin and later sees that he's made a mess of the suite she put him in, she worries that he's prone to these too.
  • Polgara does this at least twice in The Belgariad/Mallorean prequel novels.
  • In a notable instance in Will of the Empress from the Circle of Magic series, After Daja finds out her love interest isn't going to come with her when they leave Namorn, she locks herself up in her room, crying. Tris comes in to yell at her for tossing a fit and snapping at Zhegorz and Daja throws a dish at her, which Tris ducks away from. The next thing Daja throws, Tris bats away with her wind magic.
  • In Dogsbody, Sirius is accused of angrily throwing a dangerous stellar weapon while in a temper, and aiming to kill.
  • The Harry Potter books have a few examples.
    • In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, upon discovering that Fred and George have engorged Dudley's tongue, Uncle Vernon begins throwing things at the Weasleys and Harry, who flee the house via Floo Powder.
    • In Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry begins throwing and smashing random objects in Dumbledore's office, wanting an explanation about everything thats been going on from Dumbledore, who realizes that he must finally tell Harry the Awful Truth.
  • While Safehold's Vicar Zaspahr Clyntahn is not quite as hotheaded as his Hair-Trigger Temper reputation suggests, he is known to go into some serious rages when things go badly. In How Firm a Foundation he flies into such a rage when informed that one of their main fleets has been destroyed and its commanding officers defected rather than face him. He goes so far as to hurl his desk away.
  • Blanche, a conjoined twin who's long been unconscious, starts to show signs of life by randomly throwing things, much to the disturbance of her other half Nora in Half-Life.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • Xander bouncing a tennis ball at a chalkboard after Buffy rejects him. ("Prophecy Girl")
    • The Master throws a few candelabra around his prison after Darla bites it. ("Angel")
    • After Angelus' ritual goes awry, he grabs the nearest stone pot and smashes it.
    Spike: Someone wasn't worthy ♪
    • When Willow is held random for an artifact, Wesley plays devil's advocate, saying the artifact must be destroyed. A shouting match ensues, which Oz wordlessly puts an end to by getting out of his chair and shoving an urn (which was the vital ingredient in the spell to destroy said artifact) across the room, smashing it. ("Choices")
  • This is a stock gag in Last of the Summer Wine where crockery is the projectile of choice. Which is often Truth in Television since when domestic tensions boil over it is the closest thing to hand.
  • Apparently, according to Worf in Star Trek: The Next Generation, this is a stock feature in Klingon Courtship.
  • Sex and the City: Maria does one of these half deliberately towards the end of her relationship with Samantha.
  • In the Victorious episode "Tori Gets Stuck", Jade throws something at the wall when she finds out Tori got the lead role in the school play instead of her.
  • On M*A*S*H, Col. Potter began trashing his office after he began to believe his wife bought a houseboat. Klinger stopped him just before he was about to throw a picture of his wife.
  • In Happy Days, when Fonzie gets pissed off at the garage he works at, he kicks a car, throws a towel, and then pulls himself together. It's in some versions of the opening credits.
  • Sue Sylvester from Glee has done this twice when she gets especially annoyed. For the record, her projectile of choice tends to be students.
  • In the Stargate SG-1 episode "Unending", SG-1 is trapped on a spaceship for fifty years; during one Time-Compression Montage, Cam gets frustrated and demolishes his room.
  • In Mad Men, a number of instances:
    • Long-suffering secretary Allison throws a brass ashtray/cigarette...thingnote ...at Don in "The Rejected" when he engages in a Rant Inducing Slight and suggests she write her own reference letter.
    • After being dumped by Glo-Coat, Don throws his CLIO award across the office in "Chinese Wall." Megan later fishes it out of the trash and repairs it.
    • Megan throws a plate of pasta against the wall when Don comes home late in "Christmas Waltz."
    • "Surprise, there's an airplane here to see you!" in "Christmas Waltz"
    • Don throws money in Peggy's face in "The Other Woman."
    • An angry Don throws his office phone into the bar cart in "The Crash."
  • In Spartacus: Blood and Sand, Lucretia wrecks a room that way after Ilithyia expresses desire to fuck Crixus.

  • In Leonard Bernstein's Mass, the Celebrant breaks the Host by dashing the bread and wine on the floor. This leads to more destruction of holy objects and a Heroic BSOD.
  • In The Odd Couple, one of Oscar and Felix's quarrels leads Felix to clench a cup in anger. Oscar challenges him to stop sulking, let loose and just throw the cup. Felix finally gives in and throws the cup against the front door, shattering it and hurting his arm. During a later argument, Oscar, offended by Felix eating spaghetti (which Felix points out is actually linguini) on his poker table, picks up the plate, throws it against the kitchen wall, and says, "Now, it's garbage!" The two proceed to argue over who ought to clean up the mess.
  • In La Bohème, at the Café Momus, Musetta complains to the waiter about her food and hurls her plate against the floor. She succeeds at getting the waiter to pick up the pieces, but not at attracting Marcello's attention.

    Video Games 
  • Let's just get this out of the way right now: You, the player. You know why.
  • In Dwarf Fortress, if a dwarf becomes depressed enough they might take it out in a drunken frenzy and start smashing or throwing things. If one dwarf is that depressed then it's likely that there's lots of other dwarves who are almost that depressed, such that the first tantrum will push some of them over the line into tantruming themselves, who will push even more dwarves into tantruming, and so on. This sort of fortress-destroying event is know as a "tantrum spiral".
  • Mass Effect 1: Saren's (or perhaps Sovereign's) reaction when he learns about that Shepard may have used the Prothean beacon.

    Visual Novels 
  • In SHUFFLE!, when Rin walks on changing Primula, she starts throwing pillows at him. He mentally notes that if he doesn't leave, she will start throwing heavier things. And when she runs out of heavy things, she will start throwing magic.

    Web Comics 
  • In Family Man, Luther upended a table after his thesis was unfairly rejected.
  • In Spinnerette, when Sahira briefly gets spinnerette powers, complete with extra arms, she throws an object-throwing fit which culminates in accidentally defenestrating Spinnerette herself.
  • In The Order of the Stick, Sabine hurls a couch through a demonic television screen after seeing Nale die through it.
  • Freefall: This is a huge problem for Dr. Bowman, to the point the entirety of his lab has to be padded, up to and including the datapads. Rather justifiable, in that chimpanzees aren't known for their impulse control, uplifted or otherwise.
  • Sandra on the Rocks: Eloise's jealous rage at Sandra's success is tough on her girlfriend's tablet computer.

    Web Original 
  • This is a staple of True Capitalist radio: Piss off the host to the point he throws cans (and sometimes his microphone) all over the studio.
  • Tantrums are a staple of Dave Madson's Looney Tunes Intro Bloopers. Everyone in the cast has thrown at least one tantrum throughout the series.

    Western Animation 
  • The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3: Kootie Pie often does this whenever she loses her temper. In the episode "Reptiles in the Rose Garden" for example, she throws her birthday presents out the window, shattering it with the first and then kicks her cake outside.