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Amusing Injuries / Live-Action TV

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  • In one of Ellen DeGeneres' stand-up routines, she subverts this trope by poking fun at the fact that we're all supposed to laugh at our own injuries; she mimes accidentally running into a glass door and trying to make it sound like it was hilarious, then asks aloud "Is that my eye? I think I lost my eye! Ha ha ha!"


  • Many clips on America's Funniest Home Videos.
    • This was lampshaded in one Mystery Science Theater 3000 bit where the bots decide to make a film for America's Funniest Home Videos in attempt to win the prize money:
      Tom Servo: Go on, Crow. To get the full effect, I need you on top of the stack of boxes.
      Crow: (from atop a visibly swaying stack of wooden crates) Not feeling too comfortable up here, Servo. This feels like it'll come down around me at any second!
      Tom Servo: Don't be such a baby. There's no way it'll fall over until after I set it on fire.
  • Sheldon on The Big Bang Theory suffers a number of these in "The Geology Elevation" due to him being jealous of Burt the geologist for receiving a grant he wanted.
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    • First, he tries to "let go of his anger" by throwing a rock, only to wind up dropping it on his foot, and then kicking it with his other foot.
      • During this, Leonard also gets a bit of an amusing injury. He laughs so hard at what Sheldon did, he bust a blood vessel in his nose.
    • Then, after Burt says that he was able to pick a nomination for the grant for next year and picks Howard, Sheldon goes to punch a drinking fountain, only to slip and bang his head against it.
    • Finally, Sheldon sprains his wrist after giving Burt a karate chop due to him saying that he can get a better girl than Amy.
  • Bottom: Played up immensely with Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmonson, where the main characters are thrown around and tormented with cartoon levels of injury with no major consequences except when it is required for the plot. For example in the first episode, Eddie (Edmonson) tries to yank out one of Richie's (Mayall) nostril hairs with a pair of pliers, throwing him around the room before dislodging them from his nose. Richie retaliated by ripping a cabinet off the wall and smashing it over Eddie's head. He barely flinches before hitting Richie right through the door.
    • One of the most far-fetched is definitely in the episode "Gas" where they hit the gas-man over the head repeatedly with a frying pan and punch him, then (when they think he is dead) proceed to punch him some more, inflate him with a bicycle pump ("How does he look?" "Fatter."), electrocute him with wires, stick a fork in his groin after deciding to try eating him, jump up and down on top of him to flatten him down underneath the carpet and are then about to toss him out of the window on top of a bus when he wakes up, alive and well.
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    • One of the most cartoonish no-long-term-consequences moments is when Richie cuts both Eddie's legs off with a chainsaw. Eddie then sews them back on with an ordinary needle and thread, but gets them back to front. Richie then cuts them off with the chainsaw again and sews them back on the right way round himself. Apart from walking strangely for a few moments Eddie is unaffected.
  • Maybe because it's Adam Baldwin, but John Casey on Chuck suffers quite a few of them. And any time Casey gets tranq'ed is comedy gold. In large part because it takes so damn many to actually drop him.
    • Jeff is pretty much the show's resident Butt-Monkey. Among others, he's been tranq'ed repeatedly (and as with Casey, he can take a ton of them before going down because of all the drugs he's done in his past giving him a tolerance for them), the first Christmas episode made a Running Gag of him getting whacked in the head (bullhorns, boxes, someone using a bullhorn in his face and knocking him flat...), and his suffering brain damage due to carbon monoxide poisoning from sleeping in his van is played for laughs. Chances are if someone is going to be injured in hilarious ways, it's probably Jeff.
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  • Everybody Loves Raymond: "Robert's Rodeo", where Robert gets gored by a bull in his "upper thigh".
  • Family Matters: During the series' heyday, seemingly Once an Episode. Often this was the result of either Carl and/or Urkel taking the brunt of one of the latter's inventions which had just backfired, or Urkel taking a beating.
  • Fawlty Towers
    • Manuel receives large quantities of injuries inflicted upon him by Basil Fawlty because of him misunderstanding his orders and generally not doing exactly as he says. One of the most popular examples is when, as Basil creeps around in the middle of the night, he mistakes Manuel for a burglar and then hits him over the head with a frying pan; this scene is so infamous because John Cleese actually used a real metal frying pan to hit Andrew Sachs as opposed to the prop one, but the scene still carried on.
    • Basil gets a few injuries himself, but they are quite tame compared to anything Manuel is dished out. This makes the episode where Basil ends up in hospital because he was squirted in the face with a fire extinguisher and then bumped his head on a frying pan seem quite strange when Manuel has been able to take much worse without needing to be hospitalized.
  • Firefly:
    • "The Train Job", when Jayne is telling Wash they're going to finish the job or he's going beat Wash with the chain of command, then goes crazy and slumps over, unconscious. Tell me that wasn't hilarious.
    • "I got stabbed, right here...."
    • River slashing Jayne across the chest. Come on, that was hilarious.
      • And in The Movie, River punching Simon in the throat and then knocking him out.
      • River. Maidenhead Bar Brawl. Both the beatdown and the Ball grab.
      • Acknowledged in-universe as such.
        Wash: Start with the part where Jayne gets knocked out by a 90-pound girl 'cause... I don't think that's ever getting old.
  • Frasier : A pivotal Season 7 episode revolves around Frasier throwing his back out and saying things while medicated that further the plot. Several scenes are played for physical comedy, including sneezing in the booth and falling off his chair. It's hilarious, but anyone who has thrown their back out will cringe knowing just how painful it can be.
  • Heroes has plenty of this to demonstrate Claire's healing factor.
  • Highlander: The Series, of all things, plays with this trope in "Money No Object", where it's justified by the series concept: Immortals can quickly recover from any injury except decapitation. (Although this wasn't true in the original film, in which some immortals carried centuries-old scars.)
    • Immortals in the series can also carry long-lived scars, usually on their faces and necks (fan theory suggests this vulnerability is a side-effect of the whole decapitation thing), and there's a question of whether the Healing Factor will regrow lost limbs.
    • One would imagine that heaving a very high tolerance to pain would be a great survival trait for an Immortal. A few times we are shown an Immortal who suffered massive trauma (eg being burned alive) and went insane from the experience even though their body healed.
  • On Home Improvement, Tim suffered these almost Once an Episode, mostly due to his lack of caution when repairing things.
    • In one episode he accidentally causes Brad's current girlfriend to hurt her leg and take a trip to hospital. According to the nurse he makes a trip there on average once a week (the same hospital also being the first number on speed-dial because Jill has to call them so often), the huge folder the nurse shows them is only Tim's folder for that month, and that when he's there for the girlfriend it's the first time he's ever been to hospital without being the injured one... and then he walks into a door and breaks his nose.
  • Gibby's cracked ribs in iCarly.
  • Summarized rather well in a send-up of Last of the Summer Wine, of all things, where the characters had realized that they had been "using the same script for fifteen years" and attempted to make their programme funny again. After one of them encourages the other to fall off a high fence:
    Clegg: [Concerned] Did it hurt much?
    Compo: No, not really.
    Clegg: Well, it wasn't funny enough, then.
  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, after a shooting in a courtroom, Munch is being treated for a grazing gunshot wound in the ass.
  • Malcolm in the Middle has this happen to the brothers constantly, most commonly Reese. An early episode has the boys going to a hospital due to Malcolm hitting his head on something, where the head nurse knows them from frequent visits, and is not happy to see them. It then goes to a flashback of stupid things all of the brothers had done in the past to end up there.
  • Married... with Children: Al Bundy is the king of this trope. Some of his various injuries throughout the years include being electrocuted on a national game show to win a new car, getting hit by a car while walking Buck and then landing into the dog dish of a vicious doberman, suffering blast injuries and burns due to blowing up his own house just to kill a wayward rabbit that was eating his vegetable garden, getting beaten up by both male and female wrestlers, walking out of a high-story window due to pretending he was Kojak and engaging in a riot along with Jefferson at a sports bar over who was in the first Lite Beer commercial.
  • The Mr. Potato Head Show: The show uses slapstick humor from time to time, including Baloney being electrocuted and a ham-monster hurling characters across the room.
  • MythBusters: Every time Tory or Adam gets injured (which is almost all the time), you can bet that it will be funny.
    • With Adam, it's his over-the-top reactions; with Tory, it's the fact that he so rarely gets seriously hurt. Case in point for Tory: The infamous bike crash in "Driveshaft Pole-vault". Initially it looked scary, and would have remained that way had Tory not immediately sat up and said (almost nonchalantly) "I'm okay."
    • Subverted in episode 29 of the 2005 season, "Cooling a Six Pack". Adam was going to touch a replica of the Ark of the Covenant hooked up to ancient batteries (It Makes Sense in Context) and report on the shock he received. One of the producers convinced the Build Team to hook up a powerful battery to it, because he thought it would be good television. Cue Adam becoming very angry (extra jarring because he is Fun Personified and is NEVER angry), and nobody, not even the cameramen, would follow him after that. That particular producer was released from his duties shortly after.
    • For an example not involving Tory or Adam, there's Grant getting a hammer to the shin after Tempting Fate regarding a test Tory was doing in the Hammer vs. Hammer myth, whereupon Tory lost his grip on the hammer during the next swing...
  • Stargate Atlantis, Dr. Rodney McKay is shot in the ass with an arrow, made more hilarious by him being so doped up afterwards in the infirmary that he doesn't care that there's something sticking out of his ass, and also his extreme aversion to/phobia of arrows later on- apparently they're worse than bullets.
  • Studio C: "Top Soccer Shootout Ever With Scott Sterling" has the titular goalie ("The man!" "The myth!" "THE LEGEND!!") taking increasingly-improbable shots to the face. They followed it up (and took it Up to Eleven) with "Best Volleyball Blocks Ever With Scott Sterling".
  • Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles:
    • The perfectly deadpan fight in the lift.
    • Also, Cameron gets a face full of windshield from a moving car. Her only reaction is to look through the broken windshield at the shocked driver and say "Please remain calm."
      • This is actually a recurring theme in the Terminator franchise, used to emphasize the non-human nature of the titular characters. Terminators are frequently shown to endure physical punishment which would cause very severe (even life threatening) injuries if it happened to a human, yet they not only walk away uninjured, but they don't even react to what just happened to them.
  • This happened to Roy Underhill every so often in the course of taping an episode of The Woodwright's Shop. The 20th anniversary special even started with a montage of some of the best of these, titled "When Hand Tools Attack".
    Roy: [after hitting his own thumb with a hammer] Oh! Goddammit! [accidentally kicks down a nearby rocking chair] OH! Oh! Goddammit! Oh, Jesus! OH!


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