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BSoD Song

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"You ruined everything
You stupid, stupid bitch
You're just a lying little bitch who ruins things
And wants the world to burn"
Rebecca Bunch to herself, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

The number in a musical where a character faces their Darkest Hour and undergoes a Blue Screen of Death of some sort. Usually involves less singing and more speaking/shouting.

Compare Sanity Slippage Song and Melancholy Musical Number, or Villainous Lament if the character singing is a bad guy. Sometimes doubles as a Grief Song. Can be a Dark Reprise for a much more cheerful "I Want" Song from earlier. Alternatively, this song can be followed with an uplifting Triumphant Reprise. Contrast Bravado Song.

Not to Be Confused with a BDSM Song.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Carole & Tuesday, Angela, having hit rock bottom following the death of her Stage Mom, wins Best New Artist at the Mars Grammys and is called on-stage to sing. She performs an extremely and uncharacteristically depressing number which, combined with her visibly drug-addled state, makes the audience extremely concerned for her - and as soon as she's finished, she collapses from a drug overdose, has to be rushed to hospital, and barely survives.
  • Yuki from Haruhi Suzumiya has an Image Song called SELECT. Here are a few lines of the song...
    Yuki: "Memories that do remain are changed to code and stored away/I know what's how it should be but there is now a [DISK ERROR]/[DISK ERROR]/[DISK ERROR]/[DISK ERROR]/[DISK ERROR]/[YES]"
  • "Komm Süsser Tod", the dreaded song that plays during The End of the World as We Know It in The End of Evangelion. Uplifting jazz plays while the lyrics are a lament about losing everything and life becoming meaningless, and how the time has come to "end it all, and leave forever."

    Film - Animation 
  • "Wash The Hurt Away" from Arlo the Alligator Boy. Arlo, having stripped himself of his clothing (symbolically losing his sense of self as a person instead of some freaky animal), floats into a fountain drain and back into the sewers he was in as a baby, which becomes a Disney Acid Sequence featuring him singing about how stupid it was to leave his friends behind for the sake of a man who wanted nothing to do with him.
  • In Frozen II, "The Next Right Thing" is about Anna struggling to pull herself together in her Darkest Hour, after learning the Awful Truth of her grandfather's betrayal of the Northuldra people and killing their leader, realizing her sister Elsa has been frozen to death in Ahtohallan, and having to watch Olaf’s form fade away without Elsa's magic to maintain him.
  • The Nightmare Before Christmas: "Poor Jack," sung after Jack Skellington's sleigh is shot down, starts out as this, but then changes to Jack reflecting on how much he loved doing something different for a change, and is now happy with being Lord of Halloween again.
  • The Prince of Egypt has "All I Ever Wanted", after Moses discovers that he's a Hebrew rather than an Egyptian prince. Unlike most of these examples, it occurs fairly early in the story.
  • Subverted with "Leave Tomorrow 'Till it Comes" from The Return of the King, which is sung at Frodo and Sam's lowest point: They've fallen down a hole and are too hurt and tired to get out. Frodo's knocked unconscious and all Sam can think to do is cry out to the Valar for aid. Frodo's sleep is haunted by nightmares of being imprisoned within Cirith Ungol, but it eventually turns into an Imagine Spot where he's able to complete the Quest without any compunctions. The song itself is about how a good night's sleep will let you get a new perspective on your problems.
  • "All I Had Is Gone" from The Secret of NIMH 2: Timmy to the Rescue, a Distant Duet by Timmy and Jenny after the two of them are imprisoned by Evil!Martin.
  • "Sound The Bugle" from Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron is sung as the hero loses (and ultimately regains) his will after being captured and separated from his herd and his seemingly dying girlfriend. However, towards the end it shifts into a more positive tone, with Spirit's resolve returning.
  • "I Will Go Sailing No More" from Toy Story has Buzz grappling with the realization that he's a toy.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Across the Universe (2007): "Happiness is a Warm Gun", "A Day in the Life", "Strawberry Fields Forever" qualify, as well as "Girl" which, despite being the opening number, chronologically comes after the others. All play when Max and Jude are going through quite terrible times in their lives.
  • Big Bird in Japan has the beautiful "Moon, Moon," sung by the Bamboo Princess Kaguya-hime, about how she is both deathly afraid of embracing her destiny and sadly resigned to it.
  • "I want my own dream/So bad I'm gonna SCREAM!''
  • In Ernest Goes to Camp, Ernest sings "Gee, I'm Glad It's Raining" after his first attempt to drive away the miners fails miserably.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, "You Stupid Bitch" is what Rebecca sings during her spiral into self-loathing and self-hatred as she contemplates how much she ruined her relationship with Josh.

  • The Aquabats! have the aptly-named song "Meltdown!". The main character can't endure the pressures of his everyday life any longer, despite his best efforts, and so "the nachos in [his] head explode".
  • Emilie Autumn would make a career out of this. Most notably Opheliac.
  • "Brian Wilson" by Barenaked Ladies
    So I'm lying here, just staring at the ceiling tiles.
    and I'm thinking about what to think about.
  • Bon Iver's "Re:Stacks," which is about losing all your money gambling and ending up drunk and depressed.
  • "Satellite" by Depeche Mode. The person is left really messed up by some unspecified tragedy, and the song starts with the words
    Now hear this my friends, I'll never be the same again. Gonna lock my self in a cold black room, gonna shadow myself in a veil of gloom.
  • Demons & Wizards has "Winter of Souls", about Mordred on the eve of the final battle with his father King Arthur. He realizes that he's in the wrong and has used his legitimate grievances against Arthur as an excuse for his cruel ambitions, but it's too late to turn back and the fates of him and Arthur are sealed.
  • "I'm Alive" by Disturbed has elements of this, though it's much more of an "I'll hold my own beliefs and nobody can convince me otherwise" sort of song.
  • "Peanut" by Earl Sweatshirt was written and recorded after the death of his father, and the lyrics, delivered somewhat lethargically over an instrumental slowed down and distorted to the point of sounding ominous, reflect this.
    Flushin' through the pain
    Depression, this is not a phase
    Pickin' out his grave, couldn't help but feel out of place
    Tryna catch some rays
    Death and hops a sour taste
    Bless my pops, we sent him off and not an hour late
    Still in shock and now my heart out somewhere on the range
  • Gang of Youths: In "Achilles, Come Down", the title character is severely grieving his lover Patroclus' death. He's despairing so much over having lost the love of his life, that he's been Driven to Suicide. Interestingly, the lyrics are from the singer's perspective, trying to talk him down.
  • The Gorillaz song "Stylo" very much counts as one of these, as the band's singer 2-D spends most of the video for it unable to do anything except cower in his seat in fear and chant the song's chorus as a Madness Mantra, thanks to his kidnapping at the hands of the band's sadistic bassist Murdoc, as well as his discovery of the cyborg copy that Murdoc made of the band's presumed-dead guitarist Noodle, a.k.a. 2-D's surrogate little sister.
  • Green Day's American Idiot has the truly epic Homecoming, which chronicles the main character's life after his girlfriend leaves him and his best friend — or possibly his alternate personality — commits suicide. His friends are gone, he's alone, so what does he do? He decides to go back home. This does not end well.
    • Extra points go to the musical stage version for putting in an ACTUAL BSOD reading "Somebody get me out of here," "Anybody get me out of here," "Somebody get me out of here," and "Get me the f**k right out of here."
  • Harry Chapin's 'Sniper'. 'I'll never forgive you of your blindness ... I HATE YOU!' One performance of the song had his voice noticeably rougher from that point until halfway into the next song.
  • "Mind Over Matter" by Iron Savior is another fairly literal example, as the storyline's eponymous behemoth questions its own existence, realizing that despite having been artificially created, some power has brought it to consciousness.
    I am what can't be - a mind in a digital brain
  • Jhariah: "Reverse" on The Great Tale of How I Ruined It All. The protagonist starts feeling like his attempts to fight the cult are in vain, and he considers giving up on the fight altogether. The title and chorus represent his desire to just go back and have stopped everything from happening in the first place.
  • The original "Komm, süßer Tod (komm selge Ruh)" by Johann Sebastian Bach really only has two things in common with the song in Evangelion; the name and this trope:
    "Oh world, you torture chamber,
    stay with your lamentations!
    In this world of sorrow,
    it is heaven that I desire.
    Death shall bring me there.
    Come, blessed rest!"
  • "Given Up" by Linkin Park.
    • Many Linkin Park songs, culminating in One More Light, which took this trope to its extreme.
  • Marilyn Manson's triptych of concept albums, Antichrist Superstar, Mechanical Animals and Holy Wood (In the Shadow of the Valley of Death) (which were released in that order but story-wise, go in the opposite order), feature several. In Holy Wood, they lead to Adam, the main character and lover of Coma White killing himself (after impregnating her). In Mechanical Animals, it leads to the crashed-to-Earth androgynous space alien turned rock star Omega, who is in love with Coma White, becoming part of the establishment he hated after Coma White dies from a drug overdose (in Coma White). Finally, Antichrist Superstar opens with the revelation of Omega's changed outlook, with The Worm, Coma White's son who idolizes Omega, turning on him and ending up killing him and taking up the mantle both he and Adam had once held. Overtime, sickened by the very people he is fighting for, The Worm becomes the Antichrist Superstar (in the song of the same title), turns on everyone in the song "1996", decides to destroy both himself and everyone else in "Minute of Decay" and then does so in "The Reflecting God". He reflects on his transformation from hero to villain in "The Man That You Fear", and his last words are in the hidden track. And yes, explaining all this is necessary, because releasing three linked concept albums in reverse is confusing as hell, especially when Marilyn Manson's only hint to anything was that they were in reverse.
    • And then there's pretty much all of Eat Me, Drink Me, a BSOD Album for Manson, and also parts of The High End of Low, especially Into The Fire, written on a rather depressing Christmas.
  • "Shock" by The Motels.
  • Mortiis's "Everyone Leaves", a song about how everyone you know will eventually leave you or die no matter how hard you hold on.
  • Muse's "Micro Cuts" is a particularly psychotic example.
  • "Ghost Love Score" and "The Poet and the Pendulum" by Nightwish are two totally BSOD songs. A lot of Nightwish songs are, these are just the most outstanding ones.
  • "Hurt", both the original Nine Inch Nails version and the cover by Johnny Cash - the former given that Trent Reznor was going through a personal BSOD when he wrote it, and the latter when you consider that Cash recorded it at the age of 71, in the grip of serious health problems, months before he died.
  • "Can't See (Useless)" by Oingo Boingo. At the time, the band was on its last legs, and lead singer Danny Elfman had just broken up with his girlfriend Caroline Thompson (who wrote Edward Scissorhands) and gotten into a fight with his friend Tim Burton.
  • Pink Floyd's The Wall is practically an entire album of BSOD, but "Another Brick in the Wall, Part 3" and maybe "Stop" fit the best. The former song marks the point where Pink snaps and completes his process of self-isolation in a fit of rage, while the latter song signifies Pink realizing how far he's fallen and begging to just go home. The film adaptation also turns "Empty Spaces/What Shall We Do Now?" into this by having Pink find out about his wife's affair before this song, instead of at the end of "Young Lust".
  • "Can't Stand Losing You" by The Police from Outlandos d'Amour depicts the narrator hits rock bottom after a recent breakup, threatening to kill himself in an attempt to win his partner back.
  • Savatage's Streets: A Rock Opera has the song "Agony and Ecstasy", which is also part Villain Song. The BSOD portion represents the part of DT that's willing to give into despair and return to drugs for comfort.
  • Patterns, I Am A Rock, and Richard Cory by Simon & Garfunkel.
  • Arguably 'Scissors', the last track from Slipknot's self-titled debut, which was written as a reaction to death threats against Corey Taylor. Notable because he sounds on the verge of a real-life BSOD towards the end.
  • The majority of Tendon Levey's discography would qualify. Some notable examples include Northern Thorns, Cry But Why, Bot of Big God, The Rifles in Mind Recoil and pretty much anything dating from the latter half of 2009 during his suicidal Freak Out.
  • Three Days Grace's "World So Cold" and "Someone Who Cares".
  • "Epiphany" from Trans-Siberian Orchestra's Night Castle album. It's Tran-Do's Villainous BSoD after Cozier dies of infection while Tran-Do was too busy waffling over whether or not his side were Well-Intentioned Extremists. The end of the song has him standing at the edge of a cliff contemplating suicide because he believes for a moment that it's the only way he can be redeemed.
  • "Everything In Its Right Place", from the Radiohead album Kid A, was written about a breakdown Thom Yorke had during the OK Computer tour, during which he was Dumb Struck. "How to Disappear Completely" sounds a hell of a lot like a BSoD Song, but is actually a description of a Survival Mantra that Michael Stipe of R.E.M. taught him.
  • Tears for Fears' debut album The Hurting is essentially a BSOD album, with all of its songs being focused on Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith's hard childhoods and the works of psychologist Arthur Janov.
  • U2:
    • "Numb" fits this trope, in addition to being a strange Survival Mantra.
    • "Peace on Earth", written in the wake of the 1998 Omagh bombings, was described by Bono as a crisis of faith in the wake of the highly destructive terrorist attack, which was committed by an IRA splinter group to spite the Good Friday Agreement that officially ended The Troubles. Appropriately, the lyrics are intensely bitter and reflect Bono spiraling in his grief and rage.
  • Van der Graaf Generator are quite fond of these. "A Plague of Lighthouse Keepers" is probably the best example.
  • "The Idol" from W.A.S.P.'s 1992 album The Crimson Idol marks main Rock Opera character Jonathan's Heroic BSoD that leads to his suicide, featuring the darkest lyrics up to that point and two incredibly depressing Pink Floyd-esque guitar solos.
    If I were to stand and look in the mirror would I see
    One Fallen Hero with a face just like me?
    And if I scream, would anybody hear me?
    If I smash the silence, you'll see what fame has done to me!
  • The "See Me/Feel Me" reprise at the end of "We're Not Gonna Take It" in Tommy by The Who.
  • "Art of Life" by X Japan: it is an autobiographical song of Yoshiki's early 1990s collapse from "neurocirculatory asthenia." "Drain" could also fall here as it is arguably the last song hide would write for X Japan and possibly somewhat reflective of his mental state at the time.
    • "Art of Life" is a somewhat more literal example, when X Japan used a hologram to give the impression that beloved guitarist hide was still with them. Yoshiki has stated that it was seeing hide's hologram (seen here at about the 5:42 mark) that caused him to break down.
  • In Frank Zappa's Joe's Garage, there's "Outside Now", which the titular protagonist sings after being raped in prison.

  • Edgar's final aria in Lucia di Lammermoor. Ends with suicide.
  • Peter Grimes's so-called "mad scene".
  • ANY mad scene in any opera...the best-known example might be Lucia di Lammermoor. But Donizetti was in love with this trope.
  • Baba's aria "Afraid, am I afraid?" from The Medium.
  • A good amount of Boris Godunov's monologues.
  • From the works of Richard Wagner:
    • "Die Frist ist um" from The Flying Dutchman.
    • Parts of Wotan's big Act II monologue from The Valkyrie.
    • Brünnhilde's Immolation from The Twilight of the Gods - well, you can't say riding into a funeral pyre in ecstasy after singing for 20 minutes is sane.
    • Tristan... like, the whole third act?
    • in Parsifal, Amfortas, who does this EVERY time he sings. He also wangsts.
  • Lady Macbeth's sleepwalking scene.
  • Parodied in The Magic Flute when Papageno wants to hang himself because he can't get a wife. Thankfully, he's talked out of it and then, of course, he gets his girl too. Pamina also needs to be stopped. These Magic Flute people really need a psychiatrist sometimes.
  • King Philip's big monologue in Don Carlo, mostly about how lonely he is, and how better it would be in his grave.
  • Fiesco's opening aria in Simon Boccanegra is also sort of this.
  • Rigoletto's "Cortigiani, vil razza dannata" aria.
  • Vere's "I accept their verdict" aria in Billy Budd, just after the court-martial.
  • Eboli's "O don fatale" in Don Carlo.
  • Amneris, during the judgement scene in Aida.
  • Violetta's final aria "Addio del passato" in Verdi's La Traviata. She sits in her bed quietly and despairingly contemplating the fact that she will die alone and no one will remember her or care.
  • Otello's "Dio mi potevi". Also, his final monologue.
  • Don Giovanni has a BSOD sextet. When the cast finds out Leporello was disguised as the Don, everyone gets like: WTF?, and they sing about it for long minutes before continuing to bully poor Leporello.
    • Although Don Giovanni manages to avoid any kind of realisation even when a statue breaks down his door.
  • The duet "Son nata a lagrimar" between Cornelia and Sesto that ends Act 1 of Handel's Giulio Cesare, when Ptolemy orders to imprison Sesto and enslave Cornelia.
  • "Otton, qual portentoso flumine" sung by Otto in Handel's Agrippina, when he is betrayed by just about everyone.
  • Katerina's Act IV arioso "V lesu, v samoy chashche yest' ozero" ("In the forest, there is a lake...") in Shostakovich's Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District.
  • In Carlisle Floyd's Susannah, Blitch's heart-wrenching monologue "Hear me, o Lord, I beseech Thee".
  • Romeo in Bellini's I Capuleti e i Montecchi has this aria "Deh, tu, bell'anima" when he thinks Juliet is dead.
  • In Tosca, Cavaradossi sings "E lucevan le stelle" when he's in prison, awaiting his execution, reminiscing about all the good times he spent with his lover while trying to write a farewell letter to her.
  • Purcell's Dido and Aeneas has When I Am Laid in Earth. Aeneas has just left Dido, and, having been shot by Cupid's arrows, she cannot bear the thought of living without him. This song is her BSOD-ing to her handmaiden Belinda before she kills herself.
  • Alcina's 'Mi restano le lagrime' in the eponymous opera by George Frederic Handel
  • "Vesti la giubba" (Put on your costume) from Pagliacci, sung by Canio as he faces the prospect of having to perform as a character who's a fool and a cuckold... right after finding out his own wife has been cheating on him. He swings from "Bah! Are you not a man?" to "Laugh, Pagliaccio! Laugh at the grief that poisons your heart!" over the course of the aria; most versions have him break down crying at the end.
  • 'E la solita storia del pastore' from Francesco Cilea's 'L'arlesiana'. This aria fits this trope so much that it is very often referred to as 'Lamento di Federico.'

  • Anastasia has "Close the Door" for the Dowager Empress Marie, Anastasia's grandmama. The old woman has had her heart broken one too many times by Anastasia imposters and sadly starts to accept the possibility that her beloved granddaughter probably was killed like the rest of the Czar's immediate family.
  • Every character has one in Bare: A Pop Opera. Most notably, "See Me" for Peter, "All Grown Up" for Ivy, and "Once Upon A Time"/"Cross" for Jason.
  • Bat Boy, the off-Broadway musical based on the tabloid stories, has Apology to a Cow after Edgar makes some uncomfortable discoveries.
    Edgar: "I'm not here to harm you/I only want to KILL."
  • In Be More Chill, 'Michael In The Bathroom' could fit this trope since he goes from being mildly upset to having a full-on panic, yelling about how he's a loser.
  • "The Destruction," from Carrie, the Musical, in which the title character loses her mind and kills everyone in the room with her telekinesis.
  • "What Am I Doin'?" from Closer Than Ever, a vignette about a man who has one after being dumped.
    "Then she suddenly said I can't see her, and the thought of it drove me insane. So I climbed up a tree, I am creeping, to the roof over where she is sleeping, and I sit there all night in the rain."
  • "Being Alive" from Company (Sondheim) is a possible example.
    • Don't forget the end of "The Ladies Who Lunch", when Joanne realizes her whole life has been wasted making snarky comments about other people instead of actually doing something herself.
  • “Words Fail” from Dear Evan Hansen, after Evan tells the truth about Connor to the Murphys, hoping it will clear everything up, only for it to ruin his relationship with them.
  • "All of My Life" from Do Re Mi, incorporating a heavily self-deprecating comic monologue.
  • "Listen" by Deena in Dreamgirls. Well, it only appears in the film, but it essentially shows how sick she is of Curtis' crap.
  • In The Drowsy Chaperone, the actual opening number for Act II is "The Bride's Lament", which combines this and Sanity Slippage Song for Janet.
  • "Live, Laugh, Love" from Sondheim's Follies is a perfect example of this. It begins as a revival song that Ben is performing, but over the course of performing the song, he realizes his life has fallen apart. The music descends into chaos and the background singers and orchestra become strident, as Ben experiences a nervous breakdown on the stage.
  • Frozen (2018) has "Monster," in which Elsa debates killing herself to fix the harm she's caused. Also "True Love," which Anna sings after Hans leaves her to freeze to death and she faces her loneliness and eagerness to be loved.
  • "Edges of the World" from the musical adaptation of Fun Home is one for Bruce, depicting his last thoughts before he kills himself.
    Dear Al, I'm scared.
    I had a life I thought I understood.
    I took it and I squeezed out every bit of life I could.
    But the edges of the world that held me up have gone away,
    and I'm falling into nothingness
    or flying into something so sublime.
    And I'm
    a man I don't know.
    Who am I now?
    Where do I go?
    I can't go back.
    I can't find my way through.
    I might still break a heart or two...
  • In A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder Monty sings "Foolish to Think" after briefly losing hope that he will ever win over Sibella and reclaim his rightful place as a D'Ysquith inheritor.
    • Sibella has her own for "Poor Monty", where she bemoans her lackluster marriage and that Monty will now have his pick of other ladies since he has been reclaimed by the D'Ysquiths.
  • In The Grinning Man, Grinpayne sings "I Am The Freak Show" while breaking down in complete anguish at not knowing who or what he is.
  • Groundhog Day has a twisted Double Subversion with the song "Hope", which is written like an epic and climactic inspirational anthem about never giving up hope... except it's being sung by Phil, who's become so broken by being trapped in the "Groundhog Day" Loop that he's repeatedly committing suicide in a desperate attempt to escape, to no avail. As such, his "hope" is not merely to die, but to stay dead.
  • "Rose's Turn" from Gypsy is only partly an example, because of its confident conclusion. That said, many actresses have played up the nervous breakdown more than Ethel Merman did.
  • In Hadestown Eurydice has "Flowers" after she realizes that she is stuck in the Nightmarish Factory that is Hadestown, will one day forget who she is, and will probably never see her beloved Orpheus again.
    • Orpheus has "If It's True" when he is told that his quest to rescue Eurydice from the Underworld is hopeless.
  • In Hamilton, It's Quiet Uptown is a song all about Alexander and Eliza slowly trying to pick up the pieces and mourn together after their son Phillip's death. More immediately, Burn narrates Eliza's furiously betrayed reaction to The Reynolds Pamphlet, and the last part of The World Was Wide Enough is about Burr's stunned, broken reaction to Hamilton's death at his hands:
    When Alexander aimed at the sky, he may have been the first one to die
    But I'm the one who paid for it
    I survived but I paid for it.
  • Into the Woods has "No More", sung by The Baker after his wife dies and after he leaves Cinderella, Jack and Little Red, shaken by the preceding events.
  • In Its Always Fair Weather, the song "Situation-Wise".
  • "Beat and Broken Spirits" from Jasper in Deadland has one verse where Agnes starts to accept that she's going to be trapped in Lethe's Factory forever.
    Now it’s real
    Get in the bed you made for yourself
    Fate with a seal
    Here is the price and you’ve paid with yourself
  • "Judas' Death" from Jesus Christ Superstar (as quoted). Jesus also gets one with "Gethsemane".
  • The Last Five Years has "Still Hurting", with Cathy despondent over her recent breakup with her husband Jamie.
  • The Light in the Piazza has "Aiutami" when Fabrizio thinks Clara is about to leave him forever.
  • The Light Princess has "Darkest Hour", where Althea, the princess of the title, decides to end it, after being forcibly brought down from the skies through torture. She sings that though it is her darkest hour, she still feels light. Thankfully, she does not succeed.
  • The Lion King: Simba's big solo, "Endless Night," comes hot on the heels of a prior scene where a moment of rashness on his part nearly gets Timon killed, and causes him to relive the trauma of his father's death. The actual BSoD moment is triggered by Timon and Pumbaa mocking the notion of one's ancestors being in the stars (and thus inadvertently insulting Mufasa).
  • The Little Mermaid has The Eleven O'Clock Number "If Only", where Ariel (through Inner Monologue due to being mute), Eric, Sebastian, and Triton sing a Distant Counterpoint Quartet lamenting their inability to communicate and right the situation with the Celestial Deadline fast approaching.
  • "Astonishing" from "Little Women". Laurie, Jo's best friend, has just kissed her passionately and admitted that he is in love with her, and she opens the song with an "I don't know what to do" section before moving into the more famous part of the song.
    "Who is he? Who is he with his 'marry me?'
    With his ring, and his 'marry me?!'
    The nerve, the gall!"
    • Additionally, Professor Bhaer is given one of these towards the middle of Act II. He gets some Adaptational Expansion in this musical with "How I Am", after Jo writes him a letter. She makes him realize that he is in love with her, and she has already left for an indefinite amount of time to take care of Beth after she catches scarlet fever.
    My peace is disturbed, but the ruckus is me as my thoughts run aground.
    I wanted a life by myself in these rooms,
    But now all around me, another life looms!
    Who asked her to come and to go and to leave me like that?
  • The Mad Ones: "Go Tonight" shows the moment when Sam finds out her best friend Kelly is dead. She becomes numb with grief and can only sit in Kelly's old car, desperately remembering their final conversation over and over.
    Sam: So I sit in the car that she left behind,
    sinking down in this void like a crater,
    getting lost in a world that I can't rewind.
    It's too late, and it's just getting later...
    Kelly: If we're gonna go, we gotta go tonight, go tonight...
    Sam: Why did I say no?!
    Kelly: If we're gonna go, we gotta go tonight!
    Sam and Kelly: We had miles to go...
  • Leonard Bernstein's Mass has "Things Get Broken," a 14-minute number where the Celebrant goes through all the stages of a nervous breakdown while the rest of the cast remains in Stunned Silence.
  • "Tsubasa wo Daite" from Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch is a less raging-scream-filled version of this, especially near the end. (The raging screams come after he's done singing.)
  • Les Misérables:
    • "What Have I Done?", Valjean's song after being shown mercy by the Bishop.
    • "Javert's" Suicide, using a variation on the music for "What Have I Done?" to create a deliberate parallel.
  • In Murder Ballad, there's “Little By Little Reprise” for Michael, “You Belong To Me” for Sara and Tom, and “Clubs and Diamonds” for the Narrator.
  • In the Broadway version of Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812, Pierre sings "Dust and Ashes" after his duel with Dolokhov, in which he struggles to come to terms with the fact that he might have died with his life in the sorry state it's in, that maybe there's nothing left for him to live for, and that he wants love in his life more badly than he ever realized.
    • His "I Am" Song "Pierre" also doubles as this. Pierre bemoans how his life appears to be a dead-end, he can't control his alcoholism, and his depression just keeps getting worse.
    The zest of life has vanished
    Only the skeleton remains, unexpectedly vile
    I used to be better, I used to be better, I used to be better...
    • The Off-Broadway version has "Natasha Lost", with Natasha spiraling from her newfound feelings for Anatole and her worries of betraying Andrey.
  • "Catch Me I'm Falling" from Next to Normal is a multiple-BSOD song.
  • "Santa Fe" from Newsies, sung by Jack after the unsuccessful strike against The World.
  • "I Can't Make This Movie" from Nine (Musical): Guido's artistic attempts fall apart, right after his personal life does the same.
  • Notre-Dame de Paris:
    • Quasimodo's "Danse mon Esmeralda" (doubles as Grief Song), right after Esmeralda's death. He's witnessed the death of the woman he loves and killed his adoptive father. He's resolved to die holding Esmeralda's dead body, because "dying for you is not dying". Yeah, he's pretty broken.
    • Frollo has a BSOD in the middle of "Mon maitre, mon sauveur (My Master My Saviour)" just a couple songs before, complete with Insane Laugh.
    • Fleur De Lys also has a one, in La Monture, about how she was destroyed by Phoebus and she'll only take him back if he hangs Esmeralda
  • In Once on This Island, when Daniel reveals at the ball that he and Andrea are engaged, Ti Moune recaps a few lines from "Forever Yours", which goes right into "Promises".
  • "Hundred Story City" from Ordinary Days has Jason, later joined in a quartet with Claire, Deb, and Warren trying and failing to make sense of the chaos in his personal life and the city.
  • "Down Once More/Track Down This Murderer" from The Phantom of the Opera for the Phantom, after Christine rips off his mask onstage, exposing his disfigurement to the packed opera house.
  • Pippin's final song in Pippin, which is titled "Magic Shows and Miracles" when considered separate from the finale.
  • "Betrayed" from The Producers.
  • "Coalhouse's Soliloquy" from Ragtime for Coalhouse. And the last verse of "Success" for Tateh. And "Your Daddy's Son" for Sarah. And "Til We Reach That Day" for Coalhouse. AND "Justice" for, yes, Coalhouse. Bring tissues, it's that kind of show.
  • "Murder" from Reefer Madness: The Musical is another good example. Two of the four reefer fiends start hallucinating out of guilt, one goes completely crazy, and everybody is freaking out about the circumstances.
  • "Let the Monster Rise" from Repo! The Genetic Opera is the Villainous BSoD equivalent of this. Or anti-hero BSOD. Or Heroic BSoD. It's kinda hard to tell.
  • Frank N. Furter gets "Going Home" toward the end of The Rocky Horror Picture Show. The song illustrates just how off his rocker he is at that point. He even hallucinates an adoring, sympathetic audience is hanging on his every note.
  • In Romy and Michele's High School Reunion: The Musical, Michele sings "Michele is Lost" after being rebuffed by Romy on the way to the reunion.
  • The Scarlet Pimpernel likes these. Percy has "Prayer" after he finds out that Marguerite has (supposedly) betrayed St. Cyr and his family to their deaths, and Chauvelin gets the reprise of "Where's the Girl", wherein he pretty much snaps after finally accepting that Marguerite is never going to accept him or his cause. The re-done version also gives one ("I'll Forget You") to Marguerite after she gets arrested and believes there's nothing left to stop Percy from falling into Chauvelin's trap.
    • But who could forget "Falcon In The Dive"?! That is THE BSOD song for Chauvelin! There's much more speaking/shouting in the song (especially Rex Smith's version) than singing, significant for taking place right after Chauvelin has been outwitted by the Pimpernel again. The high note at the end puts the cherry on top of it:
    "I'll never be duped by this scurrilous phantom again!"
  • Shrek: The Musical: "Build a Wall" consists of Shrek planning to build a ten-foot wall to keep the world out after being convinced that Fiona and Donkey have betrayed him. While much of the song comes off more angry and sarcastic than depressed, the rage is at least partly Shrek's way of keeping his devastation under wraps.
  • Moritz's duet with Ilse is a combination of this and Sanity Slippage Song. It's right before he kills himself.
  • It's not in the modern version of the show, but the original Starlight Express had "No Comeback" as Electra's BSOD song.
  • "Epiphany" from Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street could fit into this. Also, towards the end of the play, Todd gets a BSOD moment after he realizes that the Beggar Woman he has just killed was his beloved wife who he had killed the Judge and the Beadle to avenge. The short reprise of 'The Barber and His Wife' could also count as a BSoD Song.
  • "Never Gonna Dance" from Swing Time is an early example. It's a surreal, disjointed song expressing Lucky's sense of desolation when it seems he is losing Penny for good:
    I'll put my shoes on beautiful trees,
    I'll give my rhythm back to the breeze,
    My dinner clothes may dine where they please,
    For all I really want is you.
  • Richard has one in Thrill Me called "Afraid", where it finally hits him that he cannot weasel or charm his way out of his present situation—the only way he's going to avoid the death penalty is life in prison.
  • "Everybody Dies" from "The Toxic Avenger Musical" fits this trope. After Toxie's breakup with Sarah, he becomes so depressed that he wants to kill everyone, even innocent people. Thankfully, some of those people aren't so innocent.
  • Urinetown: "Why Did I Listen to That Man?" is one for Bobby, Hope, Pennywise, and Fipp after they realize they have been used and tricked by Cladwell.
  • Kathy's solo Dark Reprise of "An Organized Life" in Vanities: The Musical: "And if/That's how you organize your existence/You have an organized nervous breakdown/You get strung out and neurotic/Messed in the head."
  • A Very Potter Musical has "Missing You", in which Harry and Quirrel sing about their Heroic BSoD's over Dumbledore's death and Voldemort's betrayal, respectively.
    • In Senior Year, Harry and Voldemort have the Distant Duet (although separated more by time then by place) "I Was" where they both sing about how they wish things could go back to the way they were before they lost their popularity and were driven out of Hogwarts/to evil respectively by a feeling of no longer belonging.
  • Waitress: Jenna sings "She Used To Be Mine" after having to lie to her abusive husband about the money she was saving to start a new life. The lyrics deal with her realizing just how much of a shell of her former self she's become because of her marriage.
  • No Good Deed from Wicked, sung by The Wizard of Oz's 'Wicked Witch of the West' after she accidentally turns her love interest into the Scarecrow you know from the books and movie while trying to use her magic to save him from being tortured to death at the beginning of the song. Also counts as a Sanity Slippage Song.
    • The "I'm Not That Girl (Reprise)" is this for Glinda after Fiyero breaks off their engagement to go find Elphaba.

    Video Games 
  • "Going Away" from Goodbye Volcano High. The track plays over the opening scene of episode 6, when the story has reached its Darkest Hour.
  • "Still Alive" From Portal, possibly the most passive-aggressive song known to humanity.

    Web Video 

    Western Animation 

  • "Psychotic Reaction" by The Count Five The verses are fairly sedate, but they go into manic instrumental breaks.
  • "Down Came the Rain" by Mr. Murray is a comic example. The singer is crooning a romantic ballad, but in the choruses where he sings about how the rain ruined his courtship, he goes into a totally bizarre vocal delivery.
  • About half of the songs in cosMo's series The Disappearance of Hatsune Miku. Some literally, much like the Haruhi example above.
  • The dark reprise of "Turnabout Love/Does She Know, Does She Care?" in My Little Town
  • "Out Come The Knives" by the Paper Chase is a wonderful villainous example, seeming to be about the protagonist of the album's remorse after killing his unfaithful girlfriend.
  • "Ghetto of Beautiful Things" by Kevin Gilbert is five minutes of blind incoherent rage in the middle of an otherwise eloquently moody concept album, 'The Shaming of the True'. Also contains a cluster F-bomb.
  • HOUSEWIFE RADIO, the final part of case one in the COMMUNICATIONS series serves as this for Nancy, with the realization that she murdered her husband in the previous part leading to her suicide in the final chorus

  • Reboot Me is a literal example, as it is about a sentient operating system lamenting about how her owner left her because a virus is infecting the comuputer.


"I Am So Lonely"

Mæja singing about how lonely she is.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (4 votes)

Example of:

Main / BSODSong

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