Mundane Made Awesome / Western Animation

  • You would think that after having done that countless times Gargoyles would stop taking dramatic poses before petrifying at sunrise. Nope.
    • If you were going to pose for a statue that potentially hundreds of people would see for the next 12 hours, wouldn't you strike the most impressive pose possible? And if you could get a do-over every 24 hours, why not do it better?
    • Plus, they have an interest in maintaining their camouflage, and preserving a threatening image.
  • According to director Brad Bird, The Incredibles was built to be a combination of "the mundane and the fantastic". It indeed did its job well.
  • Kaeloo is basically the embodiment of the trope. Every episode is about the characters trying to play a simple game, which culminates in explosions, car chases, and the like.
  • Various characters in Invader Zim made frequent use of the trope, in conjunction with stylized expressions and loud vocalizations. The very first instance would have to be:
    Professor Membrane: Quiet, son! I'm making (large field of electricity crackles)... toast!
    • Also the episode title (rendered in foot-high solid lettering, one word at a time, while spinning through space) — "ZIM EATS WAFFLES"
    • And also the episode "Germs", where Zim embarks on the vital and life-threatening mission of... cleaning his house.
    • The one episode where Dib gets powers, and showed off how awesome it was by sliding from the 2nd floor to the first, outside of his house, threw toast, butter, and orange juice in the air, all forming to make breakfast, which he also ate in the air.
    • Another Zim example, this one from a crossover: this scene in Nicktoons: Globs of Doom has him bragging about mundane tools as if they were killer weapons of destruction (complete with fanfare):
      Zim: Eh, this squeaky toy will do you no good. You need the plunger OF DOOOOOOOOMMMMMM!!!!
    • 5 words: "A room...with a moose!"
      • Oh, it goes further than that! First, Dib starts to let off a a Big "NO!" before it sinks in, and when Zim does a demonstration of the what the Moose can do, (eat walnuts) we get dramatic closeups of it eating them with Dib reacting like it's the worst thing imaginable.
    • FBI Warning of Doom. Zim tries to return a movie, while a crazed mall cop tries to stop him. (Because it was after hours.) The whole ordeal ends with the cop trying to stop Zim with a zombie army. However, it can all be summed up with this one line:
      Video Clerk: If that movie isn't in our drop box by the time we open tomorrow, you're gonna have to paaaaaaayyyyy..... late fees!
    • There was one episode where GIR threw a sandwich at Dib's head. He threw it so hard that it sent Dib flying through the air and crashing through the wall of the nearest building.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants
    • "Procrastination". As the name implies, SpongeBob grapples with his denial for hesitation in writing a 800-word essay. In one of his many time-wasting gimmicks, he spends an implied ludicrous amount of time and effort writing the "The" at the start of the paper, so the sequence ends up just looking "awesome" instead of being the Hard-Work Montage it initially appears to be.
    • The opening scene of The Spongebob Squarepants Movie features a dramatic scene based around the "crisis" of a customer being given a Krabby Patty without cheese, complete with a slow-motion sequence of SpongeBob putting some cheese into the patty. It's a Dream Sequence, but still...
    • Any time the Krabby Patty is brought to the audience’s attention by SpongeBob, or at least when it focuses on him making krabby patties.
    • When a customer gets a Patty with jellyfish jelly added, he's so enthused that he bursts into an impromptu musical number: "Hey all you people, won't you LISTEN to meeee! I just had a sand-wich! No ordinary sand-wich!"
    • In one of the "Legends of Bikini Bottom" episodes, SpongeBob is unconscious due to his Krabby Patty meter being empty. Mr. Krabs gets him to eat one. He then blasts up, explodes into pieces, then regenerates after all of them land together, and then...
    • Mermaid Man. "To the meatloaf! To the broccoli!"
    • And that very intense and edge-of-your-seat moment when Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy... playing checkers.
    • Everything involving the Drastic Radicals.
  • South Park
    • The episode "Good Times With Weapons". The boys playing around with weapons is turned awesome with an Art Shift and the use of shonen fighting anime tropes, complete with an upbeat makeshift J-pop song in the background.
    • The episode "D-Yikes!," a parody of 300, features Mrs. Garrison making coffee. In that same episode, an unknown lesbian character takes a potato chip... and eats it.
    • "Lice Capades" is worth a mention. "KEL-LAY!" And cutting to the lice being blown away and horribly dying — while the kid who got the lice is taking a shower and washing his hair.
    • There's also the Cartoon Wars episodes. In one example, after Stan learns that an Islamic terrorist attack may result from a portrayal of Mohammed in Family Guy and suggests they wait and see what happens, he follows it up by saying, "If we're still alive in the morning, (Extreme Closeup) then we'll know we're not dead."
    • "It'll be the end of the world! ... of Warcraft."
      • In fact, the entirety of "Make Love, Not Warcraft" fits this trope by somehow making the quest to kill one high-level World of Warcraft griefer completely epic. Semi-justifiable, since this one player has somehow broken WoW's PvP rules, can kill Admins, and seems to be determined to kill every player in the game so many times that they get extremely frustrated and never want to play again.
      (holding up a thumb drive) "Behold... the Sword of a Thousand Truths!"
    • "I Should Have Never Gone Ziplining" is an example of Mundane Made Terrifying with its twisted parody of overblown Reality TV shows turning a lame, boring field trip into a literal life-or-death drama.
    • "It Hits the Fan" subverts it over the word shit; The entire country goes nuts with glee when shit is said on a television program without it being censored and also make memorabilia over the word. Kyle and Cartman see shit as just another word that doesn't mean much, but everyone else at school is stoked that they can say it whenever they want now. However, everyone saying shit en masse causes a plague that threatens the world unless they stop swearing so much.
  • Doctor Orpheus, in The Venture Bros., has the ability to make his speech sound awesome (complete with dramatic music) — regardless of what he's saying.
    "Do not be too hasty in entering that room — I had TACO BELL for lunch!"
    "Greetings, Pumpkin, I am at Mr. Venture's lab to right that which is wrong and TO REPAIR THE TORN CURTAIN OF TIME ITSELF! There are four puddings in the fridge. You may enjoy the contents of one of them. Dinner at six."
    "Get me my...BLUUUUE WINDBREAKER!"
    "Who wants...PIZZZZA ROLLLLS!?"
    • Monarch henchmen 21 and 24 manage to make putting on their uniforms and getting into a car note  awesome by singing "Mars, Bringer Of War".
      • Granted, doing that in perfect synch with each other while being out of earshot is pretty awesome.
  • Done occasionally in Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends, normally to emphasize or lampshade how low-key the goings-on are for a show where fantastic beings spring to life on a whim.
  • In Perfect Hair Forever, anything Astonomicat does other than sitting around is accompanied by dramatic music — even performing a background check on a computer.
  • Rocket Power replaces such things as Ominous Latin Chanting with embarrassingly exaggerated attempts at being cool, especially in regard to extreme sports (being the premise of the show). Or, as the show puts it sick!!
  • Mildly spoofed in Avatar: The Last Airbender:
    Sokka: I do believe it's my turn. I'm going to spend my vacation... IN THE LIBRARY!!!
    • Azula also employs the trope a couple of times during the third-season Beach Episode by taking the same approach to beach volleyball and flirting with boys that she takes to world domination. It involves fire, loud declarations, and explosions.
      Azula: We have defeated you for all time! You will never rise from the ashes of your shame and humiliation! ... [cheerfully] Well, that was fun!
      Azula: That's a sharp outfit, Chan. Careful; you might puncture the hull of an empire-class Fire Nation battleship, leaving thousands to drown at sea! ... Because... it's so sharp.
    • "The Ember Island Players" was a recap of the series as a play, and they represented bending with streamers. It actually looks cooler than you'd think (choreography and special effects were about all they had going). There's also the fact that most scenes parodied are accompanied by the appropriate music (ex. the recreation of Aang getting hit by Azula's lightning has the same dramatic music playing despite how completely undramatic their performance was).
    • There's also when they were invading the Earth Kingdom palace and Sokka tried to kick down a big fancy door. He gives it a flying kick with a Stock Footage-esque background... and the door doesn't budge an inch.
    • Sokka's Haiku Battle (which the background music made it seem more like a Rap Battle.)
  • Ninja Handyman, from Planet Sketch, solves mundane problems and, being a ninja, has to behave as if he had saved the day, big time.
  • Most Transformers' kibble (the bits of alt-mode that don't have a purpose in robot mode) just hang off their bodies uselessly. Bulkhead of Transformers Animated, however, can transform his kibble into a chair. This is considered by the fandom to be pretty awesome, especially since one of his "Activators" toy can actually do this.
  • In an episode of Samurai Jack after the Scotsman has rescued Jack from a bunch of sirens they have a series of contests to decide who would be the one to row back. The contests culminated in a thumb wrestling match, complete with close-ups on their thumbs and faces all while in slow motion.
  • The Tick's speeches.
    • Especially, "Arthur! I'm doing laundry!" which may very well be one of the defining moments for this trope.
  • Danny Phantom, mainly in the episode "Identity Crisis." Super Danny seems to permanently have a breeze around him, even when he's standing still.
    • "This looks like a job for...the vacuum cleaner!" (Followed by him cleaning the room by riding the vacuum cleaner.)
    • "I'm more than alright! I'm DANNY FENTON!" (Cue dramatic lighting.)
    • Speaking of which, the aforementioned Zim Globs of Doom scene takes place in, yes, Amity Park.
  • In The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, a huge monstrous ogre-type tries to defeat Captain K'nuckles in a poker game with, as he puts it: "Pair of... TWOOOOOOOOOOSS!!" (He loses, naturally, with a pair of threes, no less!).
  • Fillmore! was built on this trope. Middle school is Serious Business!
  • Phineas and Ferb practically runs on this trope. For example, the episode "Tip of the Day" ended with a crowd song about aglets (you know, those plastic things on the ends of a shoelace (their true purpose is sinister).
    • "Raging Bully": After accidentally causing Buford to drop ice cream on himself, Phineas is challenged to a duel, and the entire episode has them set up a boxing ring, going through a Rocky-style training montage... all for a thumb war! THE MOST EPIC THUMB WAR EVER, even with an overly excited commentator!
    • One episode features dramatic zooming and music whenever a character announces something they're going to do; one time there's nothing to actually zoom in on but a random patch of sky, forcing Ferb to jump in at the last moment.
    • From the movie we have a song about how everything, including blinking, breathing and sitting on a chair, is better with Perry.
  • Codename: Kids Next Door is entirely built on this trope.
  • John Redcorn on King of the Hill is frequently introduced with blowing leaves and a signature musical leitmotif in the style of a Magical Native American, but he's usually just going about his mundane business.
    • There is the episode where Hank is constipated. Probably the only episode of any show that can make pooping a dramatic and climactic event that ends the episode on a ridiculously positive note. The climax: when Hank flushes, Beethoven's 9th starts playing.
  • Family Guy had that episode where Peter and friends became The A-Team. They fixed a chair complete with heroic music playing.
    • The one where a disinfection work turns into a major, dramatic action scene, with every trope played straight for maximum hilarity.
  • The Simpsons
    • In the episode "Rome-Old and Juli-Eh," Bart and Lisa wage an epic war with the American Shipping Service, directly referencing key battle scenes from The Lord of the Rings, over the right to use complimentary shipping boxes to build a play-fort. Did we mention the large, fire-breathing dragon? Because there's a large, fire-breathing dragon.
    • Then there was the time Bart and Skinner tortured each other with foods they were allergic to tied to a stick, which turned into a lengthy battle across the city, riding on top of cars and ending in a factory for (inexplicably)note  both products, all set to "Duel of the fates".
  • In Justice League: The New Frontier, after giving a bonafide rousing speech uniting superhumans and uniformed military for the first time since the Cold War started, Superman finishes with this:
    "I'm going to fly out now and recon this thing. When I get back, we'll work out a strategy. Are you with me?
    [Cue assembled multitudes of hard-bitten warriors, cheering loudly for the idea of sitting around for a while, and then figuring out what they're going to do later on that afternoon]
  • Half the point of Kick Buttowski centers around this.
  • The Boondocks is doing this with kickball. The actual episode does not disappoint, ending with a Dragon Ball Z-slash-Avatar: The Last Airbender-esque final pitch.
  • In We Are the Strange, a dying mook sees his own blood gushing out before its eyes, then a single drop of blood stops in mid-air, turns into a pixelated block, laughs at the him, turns back into a regular drop of blood and falls back down.
  • The pilot of Regular Show (which is actually aired as a season 2 episode) offers this twice; first with the lead characters making cereal ("Milk... cereal... combine...") and then with an epic game of rock, paper, scissors set to hard rock music... that summons an Eldritch Abomination after the 100th tie. The show runs on this trope. Apparently, audits destroy the fabric of reality with Matrix Raining Code and there exists anime so nonsensical that merely watching it can suck out your soul.
  • The Futurama. Lampshaded in I Dated A Robot, when Leela remarks that the most ordinary things (like riding a T-Rex or blowing up a planet) seem awesome to a 20th century kid like Fry.
    • Episode "Less Than Hero" had the villainous Zookeeper demand his tamed crow to take the Quantum Gemerald from the Planet Express crew in a grandiose fashion, which amounted to swooping over three feet and taking it back. Fry lampshaded this trope: "That seemed unnecessary."
    • From "Prisoner of Benda", we have Professor Farnsworth's declaration "I'm afraid we need to use... math!", complete with dramatic zoom-in and music.
    • One of the segments of the episode Reincarnation spoofs Anime's over the top Transformation Sequences. Hermie's sequence involves: his desk transforming into a suit of samurai armor, jumping down a hole that opens in the floor, landing in the cockpit of a waiting helicopter, said helicopter flying off, finally landing and the helicopter then transforming into... another desk, which he proceeds to do paperwork at.
  • Sym-Bionic Titan gives us epic tuna-can opening.
  • Sweesters Virtual Room, a series where every episode is the Bottle Episode, has an instance of this when a simple thumb war becomes the most epic thing in the universe. Complete with a Big "NO!" in Slow Motion at the end. It's exactly as cheesy as it sounds.
  • Megas XLR. Coop makes the simple act of pushing a button awesome, by smashing it with his face.
    • Also, the Context-Sensitive-Big-Red-Button that changes episode to episode. It's even changed twice in the same episode.
  • From Voltron Force episode "The Hunkyard", we have an example of Hunk barbequing...ribs the size of a Buick on a customized grill the size of a church organ. His secret ingredient: jet fuel. Not only does he, predictably, burn such ribs, they launch into the air and through the ceiling, activating the Castle of Lion's missile defense system. Pidge's reaction is PRICELESS:
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy
    • In "An Ed Too Many," Jimmy goes Yandere when Sarah starts obsessing over Double D. He declares himself "a lone wolf looking for trouble," and proceeds to rip apart his teddy bear.
    • In "Know-It-All Ed", Edd gets uncharacteristically carried away firing off a makeshift Gatling gun made from "Canadian squirt guns".
      Edd: Oh yes, I feel it! I feel the adrenaline, Eddy-baby!!
      Eddy: Double D! Double D! Relax, would ya? It's a toy, from Canada. Geez, how embarrassing...
    • In "Will Work for Ed", Rolf explains to Ed his first task as the farm "nincompoop": Peeling Potatoes
      Rolf: Behold, the potato! Bow to this fruit of the earth, then peel it like it was the last task of your miserable life!!
  • The epic game of tag in The Powerpuff Girls Movie. Moments in The Powerpuff Girls show proper include the professor swallowing a pea ("Eat your pea, Professor!"), the townspeople saving the day by ripping open the packages of a collector, the girls eating broccoli, and Mojo breaking a loaf of bread over an alien invader's head.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
    "This is my book... and I'M GONNA READ IT!"
  • Aqua Teen Hunger Force: [1]
    Dr. Weird: Gentlemen! Behold! The thermo... stat! (epic zoom in)
    Steve: That's been there.
    Dr. Weird: Observe... as I... adjust the heat! (maniacal laughter)
    Steve: Is it on?
    Dr. Weird: You... tell me! (maniacal laughter) Oh, oh, WAIT! (bursts into flame)
  • The Looney Tunes Show features Daffy Duck: The Wizard, a Heavy Mithril Power Ballad about Daffy doing incredibly mundane things like riding an escalator, blowing up a hot dog in a microwave, or crossing the street, juxtaposed with lavishly-animated Imagine Spots featuring the kind of stuff you'd expect from a Power Metal music video.
  • In How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, a waiter arrives, bringing a covered dish, in which there's a smaller waiter with a smaller covered dish, and so on and so on, until the smallest opens his dish to reveal...a strawberry.
  • Adventure Time's use of this trope is par for the course.
    • "Blood Under the Skin" opens with Finn and Jake having a dramatic show-down with a bug monster... except it's actually just a normal-sized ladybug that they're trying to shoo out of their treehouse.
    • Special mention must be made of SUPER ULTIMATE HIGH-FIVE GO!!! from "Five Short Graybles". Finn and Jake decide that, as cool as their high-fives get, they can make them even better, and this eventually culminates in the two of them catapulting hands first across a good chunk of the land of Ooo. They're flying for most of the episode, and they finally connect, entirely by coincidence, over a talent competition which they promptly win because the stunt was just that cool.
    • "Five Short Graybles" also has Princess Bubblegum using a combination of sorcery and mad science to make "the most perfect sandwich that has ever existed or ever will exist within the confines of space-time".
  • Pretty much all of the preschoolers' and children's shows do this when it comes to teaching how washing your teeth after every meal is fun, or always eating the vegetables, or washing your hands before eating or after going to the bathroom, etc., and making songs about it, so that the kid actually starts to like it.
  • Darkwing Duck has a deadly training course set in his kitchen to turn the simple act of making breakfast into a lethal ordeal. Complete with an auto-targeting sentry gun that fires Froot Loops.
  • A more meta example, but Young Justice fans like to take a particular line out of context to make it this. In context, it's the end of a rather tense conversation between Superman and Batman about Superman ignoring his responsibilities to Conner. Out of context:
    Superman: I'll take that pie to go. (dramatic background music)
  • Toy Story: "Wind the frog!"
  • From the Gravity Falls episode "Irrational Treasure": "We're gonna have to break in."
  • Recess: There's nothing more horrifying than sitting in a box drawn in chalk on the ground in the playground. And you can't come out of it. And you're all alone. And no one can come into it to help you.
  • Littlest Pet Shop (2012) gives us...The Lost and Found Box!
  • Maybe you never thought even Reading Rainbow could make getting a library card awesome, but BEHOLD! In an animated sequence, Conan the Librarian (not the one from UHF) forges a library card for a young boy, bequeathing it unto him with all the portent of a legendary artifact.
  • In the Rainbow Magic movie, dramatic music is set to a montage of the goblins putting together snowmen.
  • In Justice League: In the episode "Only a Dream", Batman made the act of ordering a coffee look awesome.
  • Everything becomes this when Uncle Grandpa is around. Having a big belly gives you the ability to hypnotize people, getting a nickname involves slaying a dragon, trying to get into a locked truck leads to the truck becoming a monster and trying to destroy the world, and that's just the beginning!
  • Dave the Barbarian does this a lot. The narrator in particular is prone to announcing utterly mundane or ludicrous events as if they're epic dramatic situations.
    Lo, spring has come at last to the small, somewhat damp kingdom of Udrogoth, and spring means but one thing to a mighty barbarian hero such as Dave: SPRING CLEANING!
  • VeggieTales has done this with its Running Gag of hanging lampshades on the anatomy of its characters, having an entire "serious" song about Mr. Lunt's (and only Mr. Lunt's) lack of a belly button.
  • The We Bare Bears episode "Shush Ninjas" makes shushing noisy moviegoers into a journey of restoring peace and order.
  • In Steven Universe, Steven at one point contains Peridot with Earth's greatest trapping technology...THE CHILD SAFETY LOCK!
  • Fire-Retardant Foam in The Transformers can short circuit Cybertronians, and causes even the mighty Megatron to flee in terror. Ironhide can actually shoot the stuff from his arms, but never uses it to seize control or end the war.
  • On Sanjay and Craig, one of the arcade game cabinets at the Frycade is literally titled "Do Your Taxes".