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Vinyl Shatters

Vinyl LP records in media break easily if thrown or manhandled. When they do break, they tend to shatter into small pieces just like breaking glass. They even sound like glass when they break.

This is The Coconut Effect for most of its run. Vinyl records don't break that easily, they generally don't shatter, and they definitely don't sound like glass when they break. This is a carryover from when those big round discs were shellac 78s, which do shatter dramatically (though they still don't quite sound like glass). Shellac records and vinyl LPs look almost alike, and they coexisted for a few years; by the time most of the big round discs were vinyl, people (or maybe just execs) kept expecting them to act like shellac in films and TV, at least as far as durability went.

If a work was written or produced before about 1948, a large-diameter record shattering is almost certainly not an example of this trope, as it would be shellac, not vinyl. By 1952, vinyl records were roughly even with shellac in percentage of records sold; By 1958, new 12-inch diameter discs were virtually always vinyl. The smaller, 7-inch diameter records, were never shellac and therefore, one shattering is always an example of this trope.


Examples:

Advertising
  • This Tang/Honeycomb sweepstakes commercial shows kids throwing out "obsolete" music formats (but strangely not compact discs) in favor of MP3 players instead. When a whole box of records is dumped into a dumpster, they all shatter like glass, and then they throw in the record player and let it break too.

Film
  • Youth in Revolt. Francois breaks his vinyls apart.
  • Semi-Averted in Shaun of the Dead. At least it doesn't sound like glass, though, and they are thrown with quite a bit of force.
  • When Sharon and Susan are fighting at the camp dance in The Parent Trap.
  • Mr. Moses from The Meteor Man would rather give up his own hand than his prize records. A poignant trumpet solo accompanies the shot of one of those records shattering when thrown at a mobster's hand, disarming him and saving an imperiled Meteor Man.

Literature
  • Mentioned in one of the Sports Hall Of Shame books. A coach played an opposing team's song every day, and right before the big game shouted "I never want to hear this song again!" and dramatically threw down the record, but it didn't shatter.

Live-Action TV
  • The early '80s titles to Top of the Pops end with a vinyl record exploding into fragments in mid air. (Although this clearly wasn't dramatic enough, as the titles were later updated to have an exploding TV instead).
  • The modern Never Mind the Buzzcocks opening has vinyl records fall and shatter on the ground. Different record covers are occasionally shown. This is probably in homage to the Top of the Pops example above.
  • In The Mighty Boosh, on a dare, Vince bites into one of Howard's records and breaks it into pieces.
  • In the M*A*S*H finale, Major Winchester breaks the classical record he was listening to after he finds out the band he had formed got killed in an ambush. This may or may not be an example of the trope; in 1953, when the Korean War ended, large-diameter shellac records were still quite common.
    • The show had a few of those. One episode had Hawkeye and BJ breaking all of Winchester's records by smashing them against their heads.
    • Another episode ended with Klinger opening the jukebox in the Officer's Club and smashing a record. He had spent the episode devastated at finding out his ex-wife (who he still had feelings for) was marrying his best friend, and felt he had nothing to go home to. He repeatedly played "their song" on the jukebox during the episode and his smashing the record symbolized he had finally gotten over her.
  • The Barney & Friends episode "Practice Makes Music" has a scene where Tina accidentally drops three 45-RPM records onto the ground, and they shatter into many pieces as if they were shellac. Barney then uses his magic to restore things, by turning the three destroyed 45s into one large LP! "Ta-da! Good as new!" he announces, and when the record is played, it switches between the three former discs' tracks in the middle of each song.
  • Averted on Leave It to Beaver in the episode "Dance Contest." Fed up with Theodore and Larry dancing and fooling around to his cha-cha instructional record, Wally attempts to remove it from his phonograph, only he forgot to remove the record changer arm, so he winds up breaking the vinyl LP in half.
  • A running gag on The Goodies was Tim making patriotic speeches with "Land of Hope and Glory" playing. At one point, Bill gets fed up with his pontificating and tries to smash the record. Apparently, they'd been given a prop record that wouldn't shatter, so (as can be seen in the Hilarious Outtakes) after a few tries Tim snatched it off Bill and tried to break it over his head.

Video Games

Web Animation

Western Animation
  • The Golden Disc at the end of "Code of Hero" may count.
  • Garfield and Friends, "Jukebox Jon": When Garfield bowls Odie into the table where Jon's record player is playing self-hypnosis records to help him stop biting his nails, the records come off the turntable and break, each in two large pieces and a bunch of little pieces.
  • The Simpsons episode "The Itchy And Scratchy Movie" has Bart breaking records for kicks.
  • In the Family Guy episode "I Dream of Jesus", Brian and Stewie break Peter's Surfin' Bird record (in a parody of the printer destruction sequence from Office Space); Stewie stomps on it with his foot and Brian smashes it further with a baseball bat, and Stewie even punches the record even further to pieces.
  • Played straight on the Ed, Edd n Eddy episode "A Pinch to Grow an Ed," where Eddy attempts to play an LP, but he can't reach the turntable on his cabinet, and an attempt to reach it on a chair causes his record to go flying and shatter into many pieces, complete with sounding like glass as it breaks.
  • In Scooby-Doo Meets the Boo Brothers, Shaggy is fed up with the ghosts' song and dance number at one point, swipes the record off their record player, and smashes it on the ground as if it were made of glass.
  • In the Rugrats episode "Give and Take," Angelica hurls a few of Chuckie's records onto the floor and lets them break, just for kicks. However, they don't sound like glass when they break.
  • In Duckman, a psychotic woman smashes a rare record belonging to Duckman.
  • Averted in the My Little Pony Tales episode "Roll Around the Clocks"; when Bright Eyes falls while carrying a huge stack of records at the roller rink, they stay in one piece, and are still perfectly usable.

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