Angus on Jan 12th 2015 at 7:34:27 AM
Last Edited By:
randomtroper89 on Jul 2nd 2018 at 3:56:27 PM
Page Type: Trope
A common gag, where it looks like a long time has passed, but instead a ridiculously short time has passed instead (usually way too short for the shown things to be realistic). Most often Played for Laughs.
For example, a wife leaves her husband, and then we cut to some time in the future and we see the house in complete disarray and unmaintained, filthy, with dirty clothes, empty beer cans and pizza boxes everywhere, mountains of unclean dishes, and so on. Everything looks like months have passed. Then someone comments that some ridiculously short amount of time has actually passed, like five hours.
Note that this is trope is about a timeskip that's too short to be realistic, has no real explanation, and is played for humor. If an in-universe character is deliberately made by others to think that more time has passed than really has, it's a Faked Rip Van Winkle.
- Top Secret!. After Nick Rivers is captured by the East German government he's shown in a cell, where he's making the twentieth mark on the wall (indicating that he's been incarcerated for twenty days). Then his manager arrives, and he says he's been waiting for twenty minutes.
- The How I Met Your Mother episode "Shelter Island" ends with Stella leaving Ted at their wedding. The next episode, "Happily Ever After", opens with Ted reminiscing about that experience, how it seemed so horrible at the time, but looking back on it he feels he's come out of it a little stronger, and hardly even thinks about Stella anymore. Lily then remarks, "Ted, the wedding was yesterday. It's been 24 hours."
- Malcolm in the Middle: Hal takes the boys to a NASCAR race. At first they're excited, but after a series of slow dissolves showing the cars going around, the boys sweating and fidgeting and the fans cheering, they look miserable... only to show them checking off the second lap on their scorecard.
- Eli Stone: The episode moves along as normal, when Eli suddenly realizes that for the past week he hasn't changed his suit or had any non-plot relevant conversations with anyone. This is his realization that he's not actually awake, he's under anesthetic while surgeons operate on his brain aneurysm.
- From an episode of Get Smart:
Max: When I joined Control, the Chief had a full head of hair.Agent 99: Really? When I first started here the Chief was completely bald.Max: That's right, you started a week after I did.
- Doctor Who
- In the episode "Forest of the Dead", there's a time compression montage in which Donna meets a nice man, falls in love, gets married, and has two children. After she starts suspecting something is wrong with her new life, she discovers that she's in a Lotus-Eater Machine — and has been for less than ten minutes. The entire process of meeting a nice man, falling in love, getting married, and having two children occupied exactly the same amount of time it took the audience to watch the montage.
- In the episode "The Power of Three", a bored Doctor needs to pass time, so he paints a fence, mows the lawn, and dribbles a football (by his count) over a million times. At the end of the montage, it's still only been an hour.
- In one episode of Moonlighting, David is arrested. He begins marking the days on his cell wall. After he's made enough marks to indicate that he's been there for several months, a cop arrives to let him out, and comments that he's only been there about 20 minutes. (I wrote this example out from memory: I probably got all the details wrong. I apologise.)
- In The Simpsons
(Marge's sisters use a phone book and dial the first number)Patty: Hello, is this A. Aaronson? It might interest to you to know that Marge Simpson is pregnant again.(Time Skip occurs)Patty: Just thought you'd like to know, Mr. Zykowski.(Patty hangs up)Patty: There. Aaronson and Zykowski are the two biggest gossips in town — in an hour, everyone will know.
- In the episode "And Maggie Makes Three", Marge's sisters Patty and Selma promise not to tell Homer about Marge's pregnancy and use the telephone to call other people about it. We see the following happen:
- In Simpsons Comics, where three characters have been trapped in the trunk of a car. The next shot is of several pages falling off a calendar. Homer looks at the calendar, saying, "Stupid bank calendars. The cheap glue they use never lasts past March."
- In the Rugrats episode, "Grandpa Moves Out", after Lou moves out of Tommy's house and into a retirement home, it seems like an entire year has passed, as the weather changes from summer, to fall, to winter, and then back to summer. However, only a week has actually passed since Lou moved out, as there is a subtitle that says, "One Week Later", and Drew says to Stu, "Crazy weather we've been having this week, huh?".
- In the Sonic Boom episode, "Battle of the Boy Bands", when Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles form their own boy band, they have to come up with a name, and a montage is shown. This includes the usual montage tropes, such as the Wastebasket Ball and Spinning Clock Hands. Then we see pages coming off the calender, only for Sonic to reveal it was Knuckles:
Sonic: "Knuckles, stop tearing pages off that calendar!"
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: "Read It and Weep" features a scene resembling a Boredom Montage during Rainbow Dash's hospital stay. She tries to pass the time by talking to the furniture, bouncing a ball off the wall, and so on. Then after a minute of the montage, we cut to a clock—and only a minute has actually passed.
- In the Arthur episode "Waiting to Go" (loosely based on Waiting for Godot) Brain and Binky are left alone waiting for their mothers to pick them up after soccer practice. They act as if they've been on their own for hours and expect to die there, but at the end of the episode when their mothers show up it turns out they've only been waiting an extra 15 minutes.
- South Park
- In the episode "The Wacky Molestation Adventure", the children discover that if they accuse their parents of molestation, the authorities will take them away. When this becomes popular enough, the rest of the parents leave town voluntarily, leaving a town with only children in it. We cut to some time after, and the town is all boarded up and desolated, like a ghost town that has been abandoned for years. The children have become wild, having gone full way into Lord of the Flies style tribal wars. In the end, it turns out that only a week has passed.
- In another episode, Cartman gets injured and ends up in a coma. We dissolve to Cartman in a hospital bed with a Time Passage Beard, then he wakes up. It turns out he's been in a coma for two days, and the "beard" was just a face-warmer.
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