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Brick Joke

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"See, only made you wait a year before explaining what was up with that."

Named after an old joke, which seems at first blush to be a pair of unrelated jokes. At the end of the first joke, a brick is tossed away, leaving the confused listener without a punchline. At the end of the second joke, the brick returns and the listener falls on the floor laughing. For bonus points, the teller can tell an actual unrelated joke in between. Sometimes, the Brick Joke structure of introducing a seemingly irrelevant feature only to return to it much later, after the audience has largely forgotten about it, can be used for drama as well as comedy; when that feature was a joke, it's known as the Chekhov's Gag.

Popularized in early 20th-century Newspaper Comics by Krazy Kat.

In a masterclass on playwriting, Alan Ayckbourn mentions this trope specifically, calling it "The Plant". Early on, one of his two demonstration actors mentions that he has an urge to sneeze when sexually aroused. Then at the very end:


Actress: Do you think we could become more than friends?
Actor: Aaaachoo!

The Stinger usually consists of one. Contrast All There in the Stinger, when the Stinger contains information that's vital to understanding the plot. Compare and Contrast with the Overly Long Gag, where the humor is in how long it takes to get to the punchline. See also Late to the Punchline, which is where a character who doesn't get a joke finally gets it, making it a kind of Brick Joke for that character. See Comeback Tomorrow if the character finally delivers their late comeback to a confused opponent. See also Something We Forgot and "Shaggy Dog" Story.

*throws brick in the air, the brick does not come down.*

Arguably, what is probably the longest brick joke in history occurs in the series finale of Newhart, where Bob is hit on the head, and wakes up in bed with his wife Emily from his previous series The Bob Newhart Show as a parody of the "It Was All A Dream" story line in the series Dallas, implying the series Newhart is a dream Bob has each night.



    open/close all folders 

  • There were two different "The World is Just Awesome" ads run by the Discovery Channel. The MythBusters make an appearance in both of them. In the first, Adam lights Jamie's arm on fire (at about :50). In the second, at about :32 in, Adam's tied up in a cauldron, which Jamie has just lit a fire underneath.
  • One ESPN commercial about Shaquille O'Neal and Scrabble premiered when he was playing for the Phoenix Suns, in 2008. In October 2009, after he had signed with the Cleveland Cavaliers, this commercial aired. The videos are filled with other gags if you notice them, such as different analysts in the commercials suggest that he plays Scrabble the same way every game.
  • In a Swedish women's magazine, there was an ad for "mini-baguettes", baguettes you baked in the oven. It said: "If you put six mini-baguettes in the oven now..." About ten pages later, there was another ad for them, saying "...they'll be done by now."
  • In the US, AT&T wireless aired a commercial boasting about how extensive their service is. The announcer starts flipping through postcards of places they cover onto an 8-foot-wide map of the US on the floor. The commercial ends. You think that's the end, but three or four commercials later it cuts back to the man. He's still flipping the postcards, and the map is nearly covered.
  • The 2011 Volkswagen Super Bowl commercial displays a kid dressed up as Darth Vader. The 2012 Volkswagen commercial displays a fat dog that gets fit...and Darth Vader choking a viewer for saying it was cuter than him.
  • Hulu had an ad for a Toyota vehicle that was excited about the "limited commercial interruption". The woman in the commercial asks, "Have you ever seen a 5-second ad before?" When it gets to the first commercial break...
    Woman from earlier: Mashed potatoes...oh, you're back! Does this mean it's time for the 5-second a— [commercial ends]
  • A magazine ad from 1977 shows two adjacent mansions (one of which looks remarkably similar to a mini-White House) and two distant human silhouettes in one of the doorways. The ad copy reads: "I was wondering if I could possibly borrow a cup of Johnnie Walker Black Label." About 10 years later, another ad appeared with the same two mansions, but this time with the human figures in the other doorway, and the copy reading:
    "I was wondering if you could possibly return the cup of Johnnie Walker Black Label you borrowed."
  • Polaner All Fruit preserves makes a ten year Brick Joke, starting with this commercial in 1989, and ending with this one in 1999.
  • One with a shorter payoff was a pair of commercials for Grey Poupon mustard, both of which were doing a Call-Back to the original advertising campaign (featuring two men in luxury cars, one borrowing the mustard from the other). In the first, after the "Do you have any Grey Poupon?" "But of course," exchange, the borrower accidentally drops the jar of mustard in the road, and both look down at the now-lost mustard. In the second, when the borrower once again asks the exchange, the one with the mustard treats the expected response as a Mathematician's Answer and motions his chauffeur to continue driving, clearly not wanting to lose his mustard again.

    Anime and Manga 
  • AKIRA has a scene very early on where someone pulls the pin out of a grenade to blow himself up (as well as half the gymnasium). However, when the grenade doesn't explode, he's pounced on. After Kaneda, his friends, and Kei leave, the grenade goes off in the gymnasium behind them.
  • The original Digimon Adventure has one between Joe and Gomamon. It starts in episode 7 with Gomamon offering to lend a hand when things get too hard, to which Joe replies he kind of...doesn't have hands. Cut to the season finale, where Joe offers to shake Gomamon's hand, and jokes when he actually pulls it off.
    • A bit of Lull Destruction actually put this one in Digimon Adventure 02. Early in the episode "His Master's Voice", the principal says, "Would the person who put the jelly donuts in the swimming pool please report to the office?" Later in the episode, someone runs by Kari and says "...And then I put the Jelly Donuts in the swimming pool."
  • In Delicious in Dungeon, Laios's "Idea of a Cool Monster", shown when discussing the merits of chimera, returns nearly forty chapters later as a summoned monster within his dreams to defend himself from a shin.
  • Happens in the Touhou manga Inaba of the Moon and Inaba of the Earth. Kaguya needs to lose weight, so Tewi fixes her a Banana Yogurt Natto Drink. She doesn't drink it. Ten strips later, after she's tried several other means of losing weight, she comes back from a run with Mokou, thirsty, and Tewi hands her a drink...
    • Two more from Chapter 2, where Reisen and Tewi get trapped at Kourindo by rain. In an early strip, Tewi claims that she tried to predict the weather by kicking her shoe, but launched it into the stratosphere; as they leave Kourindo, Rinnosuke sees them off and finds the shoe outside his shop. While the girls are at the shop, Tewi reads an Outside World magazine about the "Sunflower" satellite and imagines a giant sunflower in space; as they walk home, she stops by a patch of sunflowers and tells them that they're awesome.
  • Episode 6 of Durarara!! has Togusa try to track Kazatano with a sock for his scent. It seemed like the dog just ran off... but it turns out he did track them down at the end of the episode, just a bit too late.
  • In a chapter of Katteni Kaizo, Yoko Tanaka hid behind a brick wall, unnoticed. The series was then cancelled due to a lack of readership. In a completely unrelated chapter of Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei seven years later, she finally smashes through the wall and yells her name. Turns out that they share a common fanbase.
  • In Persona 4: The Animation, after Yosuke asks Yu if he'd seen Yukiko's Midnight Channel show, Yu responds that he wishes he'd taped it. Some episodes later, when Rise's is being broadcast, the camera cuts to Yu mashing the record button on his TV's remote.
    • Even before that, when Yosuke asks Yu if he saw Kanji's Midnight Channel show, Yu's response is to offer Yosuke a copy.
  • During Death Note, it's made clear that Ryuk loves to eat apples. After a few offhand remarks about this, it is left out for a while. When Light voluntarily becomes incarcerated, Ryuk asks "So, I guess apples are out of the question now?"
  • In Gakuen Babysitters, after mistakenly believing Kotarou to have experienced his first love and needlessly preparing red beans and rice (see The Other Wiki on sekihan), Saikawa promises Ryuuichi that he would prepare sekihan as well for when Ryuuichi actually does experience his first love. A few chapters later, he does prepare the dish when Ryuuichi receives a love letter in his locker the very day he returns home, as if he were prepared to make the dish for that very moment.
  • The Duel Masters dub was specially designed to lampshade the hell out of this trope during its television run. When the series was initially premiering on Toonami, there was one new episode a week. The closing line for one episode has a tournament announcer placing the game on hold for a commercial break, then the opening line for the next episode:
    "That commercial break seemed to last a week."
  • The Lucifer and Biscuit Hammer had one that spanned most of the series. In an early chapter, Sami catches Yuuhi out with a feint while sparring and comments on how bad he is at them. Cut to the second-last chapter where Yuuhi and Mikazuki are having one last big rematch as Beast Knights, and Mikazuki gets the final blow by calling a punch but throwing a kick, planting his foot straight in Yuuhi's face.
  • In the animated adaptation of Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions, there was the twisted game of house that Touka and Yumeha were playing together where they are divorcees keeps popping up in random places.
    • It's first brought up in episode 5 after Yuuta comes back home after tutoring Rikka and sees them playing house in his room.
    • He finds them talking about it again when he comes back after he and Rikka confess to each other in episode 10.
    • The two of them talk about "being able to see the kids" in front of everyone in episode 11 before Touka leaves for her flight to Italy which surprises everyone but Yuuta.
  • Fist of the North Star sounds like the last series that would employ a brick joke, but it does. Kenshiro "convinces" a sleazy bartender to do him a favor and watch over some orphaned kids by hitting a pressure point with a one-month time delay, promising to come back and "turn off" the pressure point's effect. Several gory chapters later, Kenshiro goes back to check on the kids, and finds out that a village has offered to take care of the children. The orphans are thrilled to see Ken...and off in one corner of the page is the bartender, running out to meet Ken in a combination of joy and panic. The scene cuts away after that panel, so Ken probably restored the bartender after that page.
  • In the first episode of Yuyushiki, Yuzuko mentions the common trope where someone is knocked out via a karate chop to the neck, and wonders aloud if the move works in real life. A few episodes later, she unexpectedly tries to knock Yui out with a karate chop to the neck. It doesn't work.
  • Very near the beginning of R.O.D the TV, Maggie mentions that she's a fan of Harry Potter. Two episodes later, while staying in Nenene's apartment, she decides to move into the cupboard under the stairs.
  • In Alyosha!, Chapter 1.2: After Alyosha throws her poison tooth, Miru tells her that you must throw unwanted teeth onto the roof. 35 chapters later, she throws her blade on the roof, saying "Miru taught me 'Throw the blade you don't need onto the roof.'" The pun being that both "tooth" and "blade" are "ha" in Japanese.
  • Happen in School Rumble when Hanai fly as a human kite when their ship got lost. He returns few chapters later.
  • Fai of Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE- goes volumes with substituting whistling with a "hyuu~". At first people thought it was to annoy Mr. Grumpy Kurogane, but by the time Recourt comes around, he whistles for real, which unleashes one hell of a spell and saves everyone's lives.
  • In Binbō-gami ga!, Momoji and Kumagai reenact the infamous scene from Dragon Ball Z when Vegeta screams, "It's over 9000!" and crushes the scouter. Later, when trying to find Ichiko, Momoji comments that it would be a lot easier to find her if Kumagai hadn't crushed the scouter.
  • A Running Gag in the beginning of One Piece is Luffy regularly saying that their next crewmate should be a musician (over more important roles like a cook, a doctor and a shipwright.) 337 episodes and several new crewmates into the series, the Thriller Bark arc starts. By the end, they've recruited Brook, a musician.
    • Early on, Luffy also makes a crude drawing of what their next crewmate should look like. The drawing looks vaguely like Franky, who eventually becomes the crew's shipwright.
    • Most of Usopp's lies and stories have become true at some point. Not all of them, and maybe not entirely, but they are somehow true. A few specifics include:
      • Usopp discovered his genuine sniping skills when he nailed a faraway rock with a single cannon blast from the Going Merry. He claimed to have hit it on purpose, but later developed those skills for real.
      • He often claimed early one that he has 8000 followers at his command. Come the end of the Dressrosa arc, several pirate crews and their captains have joined to form the Straw Hat Grand Fleet.
      • He once said to Kaya he visited the country of the dwarves. One Time Skip later, he does visit Green Bit, the country of the dwarves.
      • In the Thriller Bark arc, Usopp wakes Luffy, Zoro and Sanji up by claiming that a beautiful swordswoman has just brought meat. Come the Dressrosa arc, and Rebecca enters the picture, being a beautiful young swordswoman who befriended Luffy after giving him food.
    • At one point in the Alabasta arc, Mr. 3 is seen floating on water, despite the fact that as a Devil Fruit user, he should instead be sinking like a rock. The anime made him float on a table to correct this error, but as for the manga version, Oda jokingly explained in an SBS that Mr. 3 was held afloat by a piece of "unbelievably floaty wood". Waaaaay later, at the end of the Fishman Island arc, the Straw Hats use pieces of that exact same wood to reach the surface again.
    • After the events of the CP9 Saga, Iceburg was shown, via cover story, to be searching for a new secretary. Among the candidats were a flirtatious young woman, a cute little girl, an ugly woman, a Miniature Senior Citizen, and a literal Fishman. Way later, another cover story reveals who he picked: the cute little girl.
  • Near the start of chapter 6 of Sakura Trick, Haruka gives Yuu a swimsuit with an Umbrella of Togetherness using their names on it, which Yuu promptly tears off. At the end of the chapter, Mitsuki, trying not to worry about Yuu, finds a certain drawing...
  • For whatever reason, the Pokémon fandom took a strong attachment to Pikachu's love of ketchup, that appeared in only one episode back in 1998. It reached Companion Cube levels among the fandom, depicting him and his love of ketchup in countless fanart over the years. SIXTEEN YEARS LATER, an episode of Pokémon the Series XY finally reunited Pikachu with a bottle of ketchup, and the audience was reminded just how much he loves it. It even got its own Image Song sung by Pikachu's voice actress!
  • The mushroom growing on the heads of Team Natsu in the first few chapters/episodes of Fairy Tail. Fast-forward to the Tartaros arc, Happy is seen with a striped mushroom on his head that is actually one of Tartaros's demons that had latched on to Happy.
    • Remember the Great Demon Lord Dragneel? Apparently, E.N.D. stands for Etherious Natsu Dragneel.
  • In the second episode of Naruto, Naruto takes a ridiculous picture for his official ninja profile, with extreme make-up and an obnoxious pose, and the Third Hokage tells him to retake the picture. Apparently, that never happened, because in the Naruto Shippuden anime-only arc "Kakashi: Shadow of the ANBU Black Ops" (which follows Kakashi through the years between the day he killed his teammate Rin and into the start of the original series), the Third Hokage is seen with the stat sheets of Kakashi's next team to read in front of him, and we're treated once again to Naruto's obnoxiously-ridiculous photo. It's even funnier for being right next to Sasuke and Sakura's completely normal photos.
  • Early in Chapter 29 of Monthly Girls' Nozaki-kun, Nozaki explains to Wakamatsu the dangers of working with screentones, such as dropping a knife on one's thigh. The chapter ends with Wakamatsu dropping a knife on his thigh.
  • Cowboy Bebop: the episode "Cowboy Funk" features wannabe bounty-hunter Cowboy Andy, a rich guy who decided to go around dressed as an actual cowboy—horse and all—in pursuit of criminals, particularly the Villain of the Week Teddy Bomber. No one on the Bebop believes Spike when he tells them that a cowboy in a ten-gallon hat and spurs riding a horse kept him from capturing Teddy, and Jet and Faye jokingly suggest that a samurai would have been more believable. At the very end of the episode, after Teddy has been captured, Andy shows up again, now calling himself Musashi and dressed like a samurai.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie features a scene halfway trough the second act where Robotnik attempts to blow up Tails using 2 rockets modelled after a tortoise and hare. The hare speeds off and lands a direct hit, but the tortoise of course is incredibly slow (and Robotnik even wonders aloud why it was a failure). At the end of the film, the main characters are all reunited when Robotnik turns up again, revealing the next part of his plan to conquer the world. Naturally, the tortoise crawls up to him from off-screen and explodes!
  • Episode 22 of Osomatsu-San has one that starts in the 4th episode. Todomatsu witnesses Dayon helping Iyami practice his iconic "Sheeeh!", by lifting a lid off the ground to reveal a yellow turd of varying sizes for Iyami to react to. Fast forward to the 22nd episode where Dayon drops down into the arena to reveal a giant pink turd to Iyami, similarly to how he did in the 4th episode. SOMEHOW, this causes Iyami to drop the Final Sheeeh, which completely destroys the Earth.
  • In Endride, as revenge for Shun trying to booby-trap him into having a vision, Eljuia fake prophesizes that Shun can return home if he finds an Endora bluebird, which leads the excitable Shun to walk right into his own trap. Out of earshot, Felix comments to Eljuia that no such species exists. Several episodes later, Gradido gives the Ignauts a whistle and gets Shun to blow on it, summoning a blue-feathered bird which they can use to communicate. Shun's first reaction is to ask "Is this one of those Endora bluebirds?"
  • Daily Life with Monster Girl had a bonus comic at the end of the first volume where the girls try to find out whether Kimihito has an affinity for hips, butts, or breasts. He replies that he likes legs, the joke being that none of the girls have normal legs. Then a few volumes later Rachnera is introduced. Cue Kimihito commenting that he finds her legs very charming.
  • In the first Tournament Arc of the original Dragon Ball Jackie Chun (AKA Roshi in disguise) destroyed the moon to stop Ohzaru!Goku's rampage, and the announcer complains, among other things, that now werewolves will be unable to transform. Comes the second Tournament Arc, and one of the finalists is Wolfman a reverse werewolf (that is, a wolfman that becomes fully human with the full moon) that is enraged with Jackie Chun because without moon he cannot transform anymore.
  • When Amitie agrees to be interrogated by the TSAB in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Reflection, she specifically asks for Fate to be the one to do it. Nanoha theorizes it's because Fate is a kind girl, and Vita tells her to take things seriously. After the interrogation is over, Fate asks Amitie why she was chosen specifically, and Amitie says it's because she looked like a kind girl.
  • In episode 8 of Laid-Back Camp, Nadeshiko shares a photograph of a strange-looking vehicle on her way back home from school with her friends. This turns out to have been a Google Street View camera car, and in the episode's post-credits, Rin finds a surprised Nadeshiko standing at the intersection.
  • In the very first issue of Shokugeki no Soma, we are introduced to Soma's most legendarily disgusting dish: squid tentacles in peanut butter. Fast forward 250-odd issues to the end of the "Rebellion"-arc, and what are the secret ingredients in the dish Erina makes in her Cooking Duel with Eishi Tsukasa? Absolutely correct. Squid tentacles and peanut butter
  • Happens in Yuuna and the Haunted Hot Springs: In chapter 2 the monks were given good luck by Chitose Nakai, in chapter 19 one of Chitose's middle school friends mentions that one of her favorite celebrity in the Johnny's was once a monk.
  • Lampshaded by Fuwa Koro-Sensei Q! when a magic sphere attack from Sugino at the start of the series takes down a monster near the end. When Fuwa mentions that Sugino fired multiple attacks, the rest from the first chapter arrive and destroy a stone bridge, seperating the class.
  • It happens in the first Time Bokan series. Early in episode 2, Chorobou threatens Perasuke with being grilled and eaten if he doesn't reveal where Dr. Kieta is. When the gang is sent back to Ancient Greece, Perasuke is taken by the Persians, who almost do exactly that.


    Comic Books 
  • In Thunderbolts:
    • In issue #15, Techno clones Baron Zemo so Techno can put his mind inside the clone. Presumably disturbed by Techno's lack of boundaries, Zemo decides to kill the clone. Techno jokes maybe he should clone Kevin Costner instead. A couple years later, Zemo is killed in his Central American hideout and a few weeks later, Techno finds a gelatinous footprint, but he hides it from the other Thunderbolts. The last issue of the first volume of Thunderbolts resolves the mystery of the footprint. A resurrected and seemingly reformed Zemo (now in a new body) shows Hawkeye that he has given his castle to the natives who lived nearby. Hawkeye notices that one of the natives looks just like Kevin Costner.
    • In issue #3 of the Marvel Now Thunderbolts series, when after Deadpool finds out that General Ross/Red Hulk is using and holding captive an amnesiac and almost depowered Leader for info and for future use behind the rest of the team's backs, Deadpool notes to Ross that if their teammate The Punisher finds out, he'll put a bullet right into Leader's forehead. Come the end of the issue, Deadpool is proven right, and he happily responds with a "HA! Told you!"
  • In Invincible, objects Mark tosses across the world with his super-strength will occasionally crash down several issues later, with humorous results. For example, when Mark's powers first manifest in issue 1, he is throwing a bag of garbage into a dumpster; it lands in issue 6, in another country, with no explanation. And then we return in issue 20, and...
  • In Transmetropolitan #1, a toll booth operator calls Spider a hillbilly. Spider responds with a "I'll be back for you, shiteyes." Five years, 60 issues, a renewed career, two assistants, an impeached president and some brain damage later, he comes back and has the guy beaten with bricks.
  • About once an issue of Groo the Wanderer, someone will call Groo "slow of mind", and near the end of the comic Groo will suddenly remark "Wait, what did they mean by 'slow of mind'?"
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Chaos Bleeds has Faith suggesting she uses stakes as dildos. For anyone remembering that small detail this comes back on her big time when Giles' aunts stay with her in the season nine comic series: one of them tells Faith she found earplugs where she keeps her sex toys.
  • In Bone, the reason why the Bone cousins were run out of Boneville is because Phoney's campaign balloon ran amok, among other things. This is quickly forgotten as the Bones get caught up in the conflict of the Valley, with the mysterious Hooded One seeking Phoney because of an 'omen'. Halfway through the story it is revealed what this omen is; a giant balloon of Phoney with a torn banner that reads "Phonicible P. Bone Will Get You". Turns out the campaign balloon drifted across the desert into the valley. The banner used to read "Phonicble P. Bone Will Get Your Vote".
  • Zipi y Zape: The "Around the world" story has one. When the family wins a free trip around the world and they're told that any extra cost will also be covered. Once they finish the trip, they find that the company that gave them the trip is now in bankrupt after paying for all the destruction caused by the twins.
  • Tintin:
    • Captain Haddock's difficulties with sticking plaster in The Calculus Affair are briefly referenced in Flight 714.
    • In Destination Moon, Thompson and Thomson believe that there's a skeleton sneaking around the moon project, due to a misunderstanding involving an x-ray machine. In Explorers on the Moon, when The Mole has been revealed and is being interrogated, they break in with a vital question: "The skeleton, Wolff. Was that you?"
    • In The Red Sea Sharks, a shark swallows a stray landmine and hiccups in all sorts of directions, after it gets lost by a mook trying to sabotage the ship Tintin is on. Several strips later, a hiccup immediately followed by a loud underwater explosion can be seen on the horizon.
    • In Cigars of the Pharaoh, Thompson and Thomson are shown fleeing a boat they think is about to explode due to an (unarmed) grenade. After several unrelated panels, including one labeled "Next morning," they are shown to still be waiting for the explosion.
  • During the honey harvesting in My Little Pony Micro Series Issue 3, Rarity complains about Flax Seed using "like" in every other word. The comic ends with Wheat Grass calling him out on it.
    Flax Seed: Whoa! Anger.
  • In Violine:
    • The captain and crew of the oil tanker return at the end of the second comic to be locked up for their crimes. To rub it in, Violine pulls the same bait and switch on them as they did to her.
    • Early in the story, a pig falls in love with Violine. Three albums later, the same turns out to have happened to her father.
  • A dark variant happens in Preacher. Early on, Cassidy expresses his dislike of bacon gravy by saying "It tastes like fuckin' semen! ...or so I'd assume." Some forty-odd issues later, we learn that in the past, Cassidy has indeed sucked dick for heroin.
  • Laff-A-Lympics: In "The Ends of the Earth", Huckleberry Hound asks an ice cream man (Fondoo in disguise) to make him a banana split and Fondoo literally turns him into a banana split. At the end of the episode, upon a similar request, Fondoo turns Dread Baron, Mumbly, Dastardly Dalton and Daisy Mayhem into The Banana Splits.
    • In "The Discount of Monty Cristo", there's a scene displaying the scoreboard as Yogis 60; Scoobys; 40; and Rottens 10. There's a note next to the Rottens' score reading "but they don't deserve it". Later, the scoreboard reads Yogis 70; Scoobys 65; and Rottens 15. The note now reads "and they still don't deserve it"
  • Rat Man is a heavy user, with a previous joke often referenced a few issues later. A typical example is Cynthia, the transexual in love with Rat-Man, offering our hero something he assumes being 30 cm long with Cynthia remarking it's actually a rose... That happens to be tattooed on her penis. At the end of the story arc, six months later publication-wise, Rat-Man and another character are about to have a horse race and Cynthia says she'll give a rose to the winner, prompting Rat-Man to shoot his horse.
  • In Doomsday Clock, a brick tossed in the original Watchmen lands: the latter comic had various newspapers and characters wonder if “RR” will run for president in 1988, a seemingly obvious reference to Ronald Reagan. Cut to the first issue of Doomsday Clock, set in the 90’s, and people are talking about how Robert Redford is president now.

    Films — Animation 
  • The stop-motion animation film A Town Called Panic features a literal example when Cowboy and Indian try to order 50 bricks to build a barbecue for their friend, Horse. They accidentally order 50 million bricks, and the day wears into evening as truck after truck deliver loads of bricks, until there is a pile as large as the house. Horse returns home to a brick-free yard, except for the newly constructed barbecue. His birthday party runs well into the night, and it is not until the lights are out at bedtime that we find out where the 49,999,950 other bricks have gone. They are neatly stacked on the roof, forming a cube larger than the house.
  • Megamind:
    • Bernard, the curator at the Metro Man Museum, is zapped into a small cube with Megamind's dehydration gun and kept in his pocket, and Megamind spends much of the movie impersonating him. The real Bernard doesn't reappear until the credits, where he is accidentally rehydrated while Minion washes Megamind's laundry.
    • In an early scene, snarky Damsel in Distress Roxanne complains that the titular villain's gimmicks are getting old, and he needs to make things more exciting. The thing is, Megamind has a habit of mispronouncing and misinterpreting words. So later in the movie, while exploring Megamind's lair (with Megamind, disguised as Bernard) she opens a door marked "EXIT" to reveal a deep pit full of alligators, some random toys on the ground, and a disco ball hanging overhead: "Bernard, you were right about that room being exciting!"
  • Mulan:
    • Remember how Mulan does her chores at the movie's beginning? At the end, we see that the chickens now associate Little Brother with food.
    • The decapitated ancestor also makes a humorous comeback in the ending.
  • The Incredibles:
    • Syndrome's death by cape in a jet turbine. When was this set up? During Mr. Incredible's conversation with Edna Mode on the danger of capes and one of the deaths mentioned is the cape caught in a jet turbine.
    • Bob's rage over a broken car is seen by a kid on a bike. Guess who shows up at the climax of the film?
  • In The Lion King, following Scar's little self-righteous speech at the beginning of the movie, Zazu casually comments about the villain lion that "He'd make a very handsome throw rug." 3 years later in the 1997 Disney movie Hercules, a short clip of a stressed Herc shows him tossing a familiar lion's pelt onto the floor in frustration. One of the many shout outs to previous movies.
    • The Lion King granted us another brick joke that took something like fifteen years to hit: after Hakuna Matata, when Timon, Pumbaa, and Simba are laying on the grass, looking up at the stars, Timon comments that they are "fireflies. Fireflies that got stuck up there in that big bluish black thing". Cue The Princess and the Frog, when not only does Ray believe the Evening Star is another firefly called Evangeline, but he himself becomes a star, too, right beside her. It also goes off to show that Evangeline is the "second star on the right" you follow "till morning" to reach Neverland. Two brick jokes for the price of one.
  • The Emperor's New Groove
    • In the beginning of the movie, Yzma announces to Kronk to "Pull the lever", and it sends her down a trap door into a moat with an alligator as she shouts, "WRONG LEVER!!". Then she angrily storms back in saying, "Why do we even HAVE that lever?" and smacking an alligator who was clinging to her. About ¾ of the way through the movie when Pacha and Kuzco walk back into the palace to enter Yzma's "Secret Lab", the first thing shown is a drenched Kuzco walking back in grumbling, "OK, why does she even HAVE that lever?" and smacking an alligator who was clinging to him.
    • This ends up being an Overly Long Gag AND a Brick Joke in the tie-in Series, where every single time someone pulls that switch, they will always pull the wrong one and comment on how it still hasn't been fixed. Per usual, Subversions, Inversions and Aversions are abound.
  • In Brave, Merida tells the witch she'll buy all her carvings. Much, much later in the movie (after the credits) the crow comes up to the castle to deliver all of them.
    • There's also how Merida pointed out to Elinor (while Elinor was a bear) that, as a bear, she's covered with fur, so she's not technically naked. Now skip ahead to the end of the movie, where Elinor's finally returned to her human form and she's totally naked under the tapestry that Merida had fixed.
  • In Piglet's Big Movie, during one of the flashbacks, Roo is drifting downriver and Eeyore tells Roo to grab his tail so he can pull him out. Roo tries, but misses. Later on at the end, Christopher Robins asks, "Where's Eeyore?" and it cuts back to him still hanging by the river asking Roo if he had grabbed on yet.
  • One scene of Coraline has Coraline visit Spink and Forcible, who give her a bowl of saltwater candy that is decades older than Coraline, so old the candies have melted together. Coraline tries to get a piece of candy out only to accidentally send the whole bowl flying onto the ceiling, where it gets stuck. When Coraline is leaving their flat, it falls to the floor and shatters.
  • Early on in The Hunchback of Notre Dame, an old man is freed from a cage and falls into a stockade saying, "DANG IT!". During the climax of the movie, the stockade's knocked loose and he's free. Then he falls into the sewers and shouts, "DANG IT!"
  • In Monsters University towards the beginning of the move, a slug monster who was trying (emphasis on "trying") to make it to his first class on the first day of school? Well, during the stinger after the credits, we find out that the slug finally made it to class...but it turns out it took him the entire school year for him to get there.
    • Another one appears in the ending credits: Near the beginning, there is a poster from a student who's lost an eyeball asking for passersby to help find it. Towards the end of the credits, another poster comes up from another student who has found an eyeball. Hopefully, the two of them will come across each other's posters.
    • In Monsters, Inc., Mike and Sulley are arguing about Boo on Scare Floor F, when Mike realizes mid-sentence that everyone is watching. He tries to spin his line "Put that thing back where it came from or so help me...!" as practice for the company play. During the credits, the cast performs "Put That Thing Back Where It Came From Or So Help Me: The Musical."
  • In Aladdin: The Return of Jafar, as the final battle starts, Jafar's "master" Abis Mal gets thrown out a window. Then we get the huge fight with Jafar, his death, a Disney Death for a hero, the movie's closing scene and the credits...before cutting back to Abis Mal hanging from a tree, pathetically asking if this means he won't be getting his third wish from Jafar.
  • In Robin Hood, Lady Cluck jokes that when Maid Marian married Robin, that will mean King Richard will have "an outlaw for an in-law". At the end when Robin and Marian get married, King Richard himself makes the same remark to Friar Tuck.
  • The bubble-clucking chicken ends up this way in the beginning of The Book of Life while Maria, Manolo and Joaquin are children. The whole movie takes place, and far on the outskirts of town, just before the camera zooms in for the end, the bubble-clucking chicken makes another appearance.
  • The Mansions of the Gods: Asterix and Obelix first appear arguing over who gets to catch a boar, later having much the same conversation (substituting a legionary for the boar).
  • Home:
    • During a "pee break," Oh takes a bite out of a urinal cake, thinking it's a "blue mint." When the rest stop is blown up, a urinal crashes to the ground a short distance away, followed by a urinal cake with a bite taken out of it.
    • Tip hit a Boov with a booby trap that covered him in glitter, and he still has it on during the Dance Party Ending.
    • In addition to going "Number One" and "Number Two" like humans, the Boov also go "Number Three". The events of the climax almost make Oh go Number Three.
    • One of the Brain Boov suggests Playing Possum to ward off the Gorg. Even at the end, she's still pretending to be dead.
    • Oh invited the entire galaxy to his party. Which is why the Dance Party Ending includes species we've never seen arriving on Earth.
  • In Big Hero 6, Hiro and Baymax go to the police station to report being attacked by Yokai... leading to Baymax using up a good deal of one cop's tape to patch up some holes in his body. Then, much later during the credits, we see that they bought that cop a new tape dispenser at some point (complete with a gift bow!).
  • Barbie in Rock 'n Royals: Early on, Erika sarcastically tells Princess Aubrey and Princess Genevieve there are centaurs at Camp Pop. When she learns about the bet and tells them there's something important they must know, one of them asks if Camp Pop really has centaurs.
  • Cars has a minivan couple visit Radiator Springs, apparently lost. The residents ask them to buy something there, but they don't. The rest of the movie happens. Then after the credits, the couple appears again still lost in the desert and the husband has seemingly gone crazy.
  • Sleeping Beauty has a scene where a minstrel gets drunk on wine and sleeps away under a banquet table. Later, while the three good fairies are putting the castle to sleep, the minstrel wakes up from his stupor, only to be put back to sleep by Merryweather.
  • Over the Hedge:
    • At the start of the film, Hammy says he buried some nuts in the woods and runs off to find them. At the end of the film, he finds them... and there were apparently enough to fill the whole log.
    • Another one involving Hammy comes back twice. RJ tempts Hammy into helping him by showing him a cookie, only to throw it away and say it's "junk", much to Hammy's disappointment. During the big heist later on, Hammy finds the cookie on the roof, and RJ has to put him back on track. Even later, Hammy enters Caffeine Bullet Time, and he uses this opportunity to finally get his cookie.
    • When he pitches the idea of suburbia to the forest animals, RJ exclaims that humans have "food out the wazoo," to which Verne responds that he "doesn't know what a wazoo is or what kind of food comes out of it." Later, as they're eating out of the garbage cans, Verne very nearly eats a diaperinvoked, which RJ warns him "does come out of a wazoo."
  • As the four protagonists of Hoodwinked tell their day's accounts, pay close attention because a small detail in one character's story that seems bizarre or out-of-place will be explained when another character's story is told.
    • In the entire mine cart sequence in "Be Prepared", everything about Red's ride is what you would expect... until a giant avalanche comes rushing over the tracks, nearly collecting her cart. Granny Puckett's story has a scene of her using explosive charges to escape from the Bandit's henchmen in a ski race on the upper mountain.
    • The porcupine with the Chronically Crashed Car. First the car is crushed during Kirk's tree-cutting spree. And then at the end, when Kirk, driving his schnitzel truck (which has been outfitted with tank treads), crashes into a tree, said tree is uprooted and lands on the same guy's car.
    • Also, the fisherman on the river bank that the Wolf floats by after Red tricks him into falling into the water. He looks bored and looks like he has been sitting there all day. He's seen again, still at the same position, when the cable car lands in the river and blows up after Granny releases the grip. Dozens of disturbed fish fetch up on the shore around him.
  • During the boating scene in Kubo and the Two Strings, Beetle has Kubo shoot an arrow at a fish and it sinks. During the fight against one of Kubo's aunts, he returns with the fish he caught.
  • Toy Story 3 has one set up in Toy Story, fifteen years earlier. The Squeeze Toy Aliens are obsessed with the claw game that they are taken from, revering it as "the Claw." This gets the gang in trouble in the first film, but a garbage claw saves them in the end of the third from incineration, with the same intonation of "the Claaaaaaaaaaw".
  • During the prologue of The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning, a pair of overweight mermaids try to catcall King Triton, to which he sheepishly gestures back. Much later, during the finale, the same, now-elderly merpeople perform the scenario again.

    Jokes (And... THE BRICK JOKE(S)) 
Tell this joke or a variant on it:
  • Once upon a time, there was a man who wanted to build a house. But, being a little eccentric, he wanted to build the house using only 99 bricks. The masonry store would only sell in lots of 100, so he bought 100. After he finished his house he simply chucked the extra brick over his shoulder. (End of joke)
Now tell a few more jokes and end with this:
  • A woman with a dog and a man with a cigar are sitting across from each other on a train. The woman complains about the cigar smoke, the man complains about the yapping dog. The woman, in fury, rips the cigar out of the man's mouth and throws it out the window. The man then grabs the woman's dog and throws it out the window. Both sit in silence. Finally the man says "I am so sorry, I lost my temper. I shouldn't have done that." The woman, also sorry, says she was unladylike in the first place. Then they both look agasp out the window, for running along the side of the train was the woman's dog—and guess what it had in its mouth? THE BRICK!
  • One variation of this joke goes: Why did the chicken cross the road? To get to your house. (If you want, tell some other jokes here). Knock knock. (Who's there?) THE CHICKEN!
  • There's a joke/riddle that goes "-What is green, eats rocks and lives 3 meters underground? -Why, The Green Little Stone-eater of course!". After telling it, you follow up with another one: "-How far can you drop a rock into a hole? -3 meters, because after that, The Green Little Stone-eater eats it".
  • One very long variation of the brick joke goes like this:
    • An airplane had 100 bricks in it. One brick falls out. How many are left? 99, of course.
    • What are the three steps to put an elephant in the fridge? 1. Open the door. 2. Put the elephant in. 3. Close the door.
    • What are the four steps to put a horse in the fridge? 1. Open the door. 2. Take the elephant out. 3. Put the horse in. 4. Close the door.
    • It was a lioness' birthday party, and since she was a very social lion, she invited every animal in the world to come. Who didn't make it? Why, the horse. It couldn't get out of the fridge with its hooves.
    • A little old lady was walking through a swamp infested with crocodiles, and no one who went in there came back out uninjured before. However, the old lady made it through just fine. Why? Because the crocodiles were all at the party! Later, the little old lady was walking through a meadow in a park, but was rushed to the hospital just a few minutes later. Why was that? Because the brick fell on her!
  • A similar joke tells about a farmer with a talking pig which annoys him greatly and so he tries diverse methods of sending him away, but the pig always returns and complains about being abandoned "You're so mean. That was really far. Why don't you say you don't hate me already? You heartless monster". At the end the farmer puts the pig in a rocket and never sees him again.
    • Then after a couple of jokes, the next one is about a concert expecting a big name singer. The public gets excited when a limo pulls up, but it turns out to be (insert another celebrity). Then a tour bus comes by, but it's another celebrity. Then an helicopter, same result. Then a UFO comes by... "You're so mean. That was really far. Why don't you say you don't hate me already? You heartless monster".
  • Yet another version starts with a sentient donut on a cruise, who attempts to ask the captain over and over for permission to drive the ship. When the captain (and your audience) is fed up with the donut's antics, it is summarily thrown off the ship.
    • Then, in a later joke, a couple is enjoying a cruise, when one of them proposes. In the excitement of the moment, however, he drops the ring into the ocean. His now-fiance is apologetic and understanding, and the two decide to forget the ring and have a nice dinner to celebrate their engagement. When the server brings the gleaming silver platter to their table, he opens it, revealing a lobster, and what do you think it has on its claw? The donut!

    Multiple Media 
  • In one of the BIONICLE comics from 2004, the Kaiju Tahtorak randomly awakens in the city of Metru Nui, and goes on a rampage, demanding the other characters to answer a question that no one knows. In 2005, that question is revealed to be "How did I get here?" Later still, in one of the 2006 books, Brutaka reminisces about teleporting a Tahtorak into Metru Nui out of fun.

  • New Age composer Vangelis invokes a Brick Joke structure in his Albedo 0.39 album. The first track, "Pulstar", ends with the British Post time recording. A voice is heard intoning "At the third stroke, it will be ten-three and forty seconds" followed by three beeps. Likewise for "ten-three and fifty seconds". At "ten-four precisely", the second track kicks in right where the three beeps should be. Just before the ending of track eight, "Nucleogenesis (Part II)", the music pauses and the listener hears a rotary telephone dial. The dialing is followed by three beeps and the climax of the track.
  • On Yes's album "Fragile," Jon Anderson's solo track "We Have Heaven," which starts out simply enough but quickly moves into an ever-increasing multitracked loop of Jon's voice, ends with a closing door blocking out the sound and footsteps running away. At the end of the final track, "Heart Of The Sunrise", which finishes abruptly on an imperfect cadence, there's a pause...and then the door opens, revealing "We Have Heaven" still going on, as presumably it has been throughout the rest of the album. Who says prog rockers have no sense of humour, eh?
  • In the song "We Like Sportz" by The Lonely Island, Guy #2 says "...except for that cunt-hole Steve." Later, during "We'll Kill U", Guy #1 says "You're still a cunt, Steve. Go fuck your snake."
  • The Canadian Progressive band, Rush, pulled something akin to one: the last song of their album, A Farewell To Kings, is "Cygnus X-1", the tale of an astronaut who pilots his vessel into the eponymous black hole, hoping to use it as an "astral door"; it ends with him seemingly torn apart. The "A" side of their next album, Hemispheres, details the struggle between the gods of Reason and Passion to "rule the hearts of man". The struggle erupts into all-out war, which is only interrupted when... the astronaut from "Cygnus X-1" emerges into their midst.
  • The "Weird Al" Yankovic song "The Biggest Ball of Twine in Minnesota" details the road trip the narrator once took with his family to the eponymous attraction. Early on, he makes brief mention of picking up a hitchhiker named "Bernie". Numerous verses later, they finally reach the twine ball.. and ask Bernie to take their picture. He instead runs off with their camera.
    • Another Weird Al song, "Albuquerque", starts with him explaining that the only problem with his early life was that his mother fed him nothing but sauerkraut until he was twenty-six and a half. Over the course of the eleven minute song, Al details his move to the eponymous city and the changes in his life. Near the end, he finally admits the entire song was a roundabout way of saying "I! HATE! SAUERKRAUT!"
    • "Trapped In The Drive-Thru" has Al detailing a couple's experience ordering dinner at a fast food drive thru. When the husband orders the food, he requests his cheeseburger have onions on it. Guess what happens at the very end of the song?
  • Peter Schickele did this with the P.D.Q. Bach grand opera "Oedipus Tex". In the introduction speech at concerts, or alternatively in the introduction track on records/CDs, he mentions that, while concert halls and lecterns and various parts of theatres often get corporate sponsorship, it's generally considered uncouth for them to sponsor the songs themselves. This digression is completely forgotten until forty-five minutes (or six tracks) later when suddenly one of the lines of one of the songs is replaced with "Drink Pepsi."
  • The Dubliners' "The Sick Note" could arguably work as one of these. The song is sung by a man who calls himself "Paddy" and in the first verse he states that this is a letter written to his boss to explain why he won't be coming to work today. Over the course of the song, he continues to get into various forms of accidents, such as darting fourteen stories to hit a trolly with his head and having broken bricks land on him. The final words of the song then go: "Me body is all black and blue, me face a deathly gray / so I hope you'll understand why Paddy's not at work today."
    • Also known as "The Bricklayers's Lament", "Why Paddy's Not at Work Today", or "The Barrel of Bricks", the song is based on a comic monologue by the comedian, musician and cartoonist Gerald Hoffnung, delivered at The Oxford Union on 4th December 1958.
  • The Lonely Island does this in their song "Dreamgirl". The song opens with a monotone voice stating "The following song is brought to you by Chex Mix". They then proceed to sing a song about a "dream girl" who's actually horrible in every way, and for the last couple verses of the song (and the final chorus), it switches to a full-on song about how delicious Chex Mix is.
  • On one of Christine Lavin's live albums, she performs her song "Doris and Edwin: The Movie", which has a rather dark ending. She offers the audience the choice of having it turn out happily due to Doris wearing something that saves her from her fate. They usually say 'no', and do here. Later in the show (about 20 minutes later), she performs "Shopping Cart of Love- a play" in which the song's protagonist passes an accident-scene and the song's love-interest suggests everything would've been okay if only she had a prototype airbag-dress.
  • "I Hope You Die" by The Bloodhound Gang has one of these.
    I hope you flip some guy the bird,
    He cuts you off and you're forced to swerve...
    • Then later...
    And when you finally regain consciousness,
    You're bound and gagged in a wedding dress,
    And the prison guard looks the other way,
    'Cause he's the guy you flipped the bird the other day!
  • The Genesis album Duke has a short track at the start called Guide Vocal where the eponymous character claims that "nobody must know my name, for nobody would understand, and you kill what you fear." At the end of the penultimate track the guide returns to complete his statement: "Nobody must know my name, for nobody would understand, and you kill what you fear, and you fear what you don't understand."
  • Captain Beefheart's album Strictly Personal begins with a blues parody called "Ah Feel Like Ahcid". The song goes into a phased section which leads into the next track "Safe As Milk", meaning we don't hear "Ahcid"'s real ending. Or so it appears at first. After the third track, "Trust Us", we hear more of "Ahcid", but it fades out and much later on, after the last (8th) track, Kandy Korn, we hear the final words of "Ahcid", "I ain't blue no more, wooo it's like heaven ahcid, ahcid" which close the album.
  • Power Metal band Dragonheart does this on their album Vengeance in Black. The first song on the album, Eyes of Hell, begins with a heavy, mid-tempo riff. The last song on the album, Spreading Fire, uses the same riff during the bridge section.
  • The video for Fall Out Boy's Thnks fr th Mmrs includes Pete Wentz getting a phone call from William Beckett of The Academy Is.... The video for We've Got a Big Mess on Our Hands, by The Academy Is..., has William making the call.
    • In the video for "This Ain't A Scene, It's An Arms Race" pretty much everything from their previous videos shows up at Pete Wentz's dream funeral, including Pete rising from the casket as a vampire, which he was in the "Less Than Sixteen Candles" video.
  • Queen's album "A Day At The Races" starts with an "Intro" of which the last 20 seconds are exactly the same as the last minute of the last track "Teo Torriate".
  • The insert for the Alex Day album Parrot Stories include the out-of-nowhere line "No horses were drowned in the making of this album." You finish the last listed track... and you hear the secret track The Drowning Horse Song.
  • An odd one occurs on Pink Floyd's The Wall album. The last thing you hear at the end of the album is a quiet voice asking, "Isn't this where...?" This matches up with the first thing you hear on the album: the same quiet voice saying, "...we came in?"
  • Jimmy Buffett pulls this off with two of his songs, released a year apart. 1986's "Who's the Blonde Stranger" (from his album Riddles in the Sand) details the travails of a husband and wife, Frankie and Lola, who each cheat on each other during a vacation trip to Galveston Bay, Texas. 1987's "Frankie and Lola" (from the album "Last Mango in Paris") returns to Frankie and Lola's life just as they're patching their marriage up after a short-term separation by taking "a second honeymoon in Pensacola", when each realizes that they truly do love each other.
  • Arlo Guthrie does this several times in "Alice's Restaurant".
  • Ben Folds's "Rockin' the Suburbs" warns that he's going to curse in the first half of the song. Half a song later he says fuck.
  • The Moody Blues did this at least once: On the album On the Threshold of a Dream, the first track ("In the Beginning") begins with a howling-wind sound effect which also ends the last track, "Have You Heard? Part 2".
  • While not a joke by any means, Nine Inch Nails had a very weird line that stood out in the song "The Wretched": "The clouds will part and the sky cracks open and God himself will reach his fucking arm through." Eight years later, the album Year Zero had as one of its central concepts The Presence, a giant otherworldly hand that reaches down from the sky. It was featured on the cover art and several of the Alternate Reality Game sites, plus the song "The Warning" specifically is about it. The last song on Year Zero ("Zero Sum") seems to echo the lines from "The Wretched" directly: "They're starting to open the sky / They're starting to reach down through."
  • In Monty Python's "The Album of the Soundtrack of the Trailer of the Film of Monty Python and the Holy Grail", side two of the record begins with a track called "The Story of the Film So Far". It begins by talking about metropolitan policemen Doug and Bob and their sexual fetishes before stating "as they aren't in this film, we won't give their last names." It then moves into "the real story of the film so far", a nearly two-minute long description of a ridiculous sequence of absurd events centered around a million-pound bidet given by Hitler to Eva Braun as a bar mitzvah present, which bears no resemblance to anything on side one. The bit ends with "they meet up with Doug and Bob, the metropolitan policemen who surprisingly turn out to be in this film after all, who kill everyone and live happily every after."
  • "Jane" by Barenaked Ladies has a line early on where the singer says he "was dazzled by her smile while (he) shopped there." During the song, he tries to start dating her only to be rejected. In the last verse, he says he's still dazzled by her smile while he shoplifts there.
  • In the song My Favorite Game by The Cardigans, the singer goes on a rampage, putting a large boulder on her car's pedal and smashing into any car in her way. At the end she crashes head-on into a truck, flies out of the car (along with the boulder) and lands unconscious. In one of the possible endings, just as she gets up, the stone falls from the sky and hits her head, killing her.

    Newspaper Comics 
  • In one Twisted Toyfare Theatre strip, a Smurf tells Spider-Man that "there is no Keyser Soze!" On the back of the trade collecting that strip, featuring an Unusual Suspects-style police line-up, Spidey wonders, "What the Hell's a 'Keyser Soze'?"
  • Once in Garfield, Garfield kicked Odie into next week for eating his food. Odie was absent in the strip for the remaining two days of the week (and in the Saturday strip, Garfield comments that "Lunch isn't the same without Odie"). Sure enough, on the Monday of the next week, Odie came crashing down into the strip. Onto Garfield.
  • Also in Garfield: The strip from November 8, 1992 featured a joke about Garfield getting ready for bed and being unable to get to sleep. On February 9, 2017 (Twenty five years later!) Garfield remarks "Sometimes I can't sleep...I think it was November 8, 1992"!
  • In Pearls Before Swine's 10-Minute Retirement, Stephen Pastis was sent to court and sentenced for life, because Rat advocated the overthrowing of the government. He convinced the judge to run one more Croc Story Arc. Said arc was about Zebra building a wall to keep the Crocs out, and eventually they strap tons of dynamite to a Croc named "Melvin", but he goes in the bathroom to read the newspaper and do the crossword. So, to keep their house from blowing up, two Crocs drag him out of the house, and launch him a great distance with Junior's see-saw. Where did he land? The courthouse Pastis was in. The dynamite then exploded, blowing it to smithereens and freeing Pastis.
    • There was a short arc at the very end of 2003 where Pig teaches his army men toys to be Oprah-loving hippies, much to Rat's annoyance. It heavily influenced the Viking characters that would appear a few years later. 3 years later, there was a strip where Rat gets a bunch of girl magazines in the mail, and says they had better not be for The Vikings. He then enters the house to see that Pig is reading a magazine about guns with them. Rat says "Uhhh...Nevermind." and leaves. After a Beat Panel, we see that the same army men are next to him, with one saying "If that Cosmo's not here today, I will just SCREAM."
  • In an old Baby Blues strip, Wanda thinks she should wean Hammie off of the pacifier because she read a magazine article that says babies could become too attached to it. In a later strip, Zoe learns that Hammie still sucks his pacifier in secret, at six years old.
  • In For Better or for Worse, Mike bought a doll named Naked Ned at a yard sale, thinking it an interesting curio. During college, he kept the doll suction-cupped to his dorm window; when he graduated, Mike and his roommate, Weed, argue over who gets to keep the doll. After Mike has retrieved the doll from Weed's girlfriend, it is flushed down the toilet. Years later, it's removed from the pipes.
  • The January 15, 2012 Brevity featured a pair of kids stepping out of a box. The boy points at something, and says "It worked!". Many readers were perplexed, others thought it to be a reference to the 2011 Doctor Who Christmas special. Come January 22... The same pair stand in front of the closed box, which reads 'Time Machine'...on the 15th, he'd been pointing at the strip's date.
  • Bloom County once had a string of 4 strips where Opus repeatedly called 911 for non-emergency purposes like "There's a 465-pound woman across the street pruning her azaleas wearing pea-soup-green hot pants!!" Five days later, Steve Dallas was abducted by aliens, and the punchline to the scene was Opus calling 911 and their immediately hanging up.
  • Doonesbury did a literal brick joke in August of 1974 at the height of the Watergate scandal. As dialogue from President Nixon's secret tapes were shown, a brick wall was built in front of the White House. After Nixon's resignation, another strip was published on September 2nd showing the wall coming down.
  • A week-long arc of The Boondocks sees Huey and Riley struggling to find a birthday present for their Granddad. Every gift turns out to be too expensive or hard to find. In the end, they surprise Grandad with... absolutely nothing, to his disappointment. Later, Riley ineffectively protests rapper Shyne's jail sentence. While outside with a sign that reads FREE SHYNE, a presumptuous white man asks the boy to polish his Prada shoes. Riley steals the shoes and runs back home... where he gives them to Grandad as a belated birthday present.

  • Dice Funk: Jess jokes in Episode 1 that Jayne will yell "Flaafy!" if she ever casts the spell Thunderwave. Guess what happens many, many episodes later?
  • Rooster Teeth: Burnie tells a joke in podcast 395 post show about three guys who were trying to see who could throw bricks the highest, so they use how far the brick sinks in mud to test. First guy lands a brick one foot in the mud. The second guy three feet. The third guy throws up the brick and it doesn't come down. Burnie moves on to the next joke (to Barb and Gavin's confusion; Gus thinks it's just an anti-joke) where a woman wants to bring a parrot with her on a plane but can only take the no smoking, no parrot airline. So she hides the parrot under he coat and pretends she's pregnant. While on the plane, the pilot comes down the aisle smoking a cigar and talks to the lady. When he sees the parrot, he gets angry and throws it out the window, saying "no parrots on the plane!" The woman takes his cigar and throws it out the plane, saying "no cigars on the plane!" So the pilot goes back to the cockpit, and while he's there, he hears a knocking and looks out to see on the window ledge is the parrot, who is holding in its mouth... "Is it the cigar?" Barb asks. Burnie replies bluntly, "No, the brick." He promptly walks off as Gavin and Gus lose it and Barb judges him.
  • In the Cool Kids Table game Bloody Mooney, Jake tries to get Alan to let his character Jess have a passive music bonus because it can calm her down, suggesting Scandal's "The Warrior" as a song that'll get her pumped up in a fight. Alan denies it. In the second episode, Jake pulls out an email from the creators that justifies his initial attempt, and immediately has Jess start playing "The Warrior".

    Print Media 
  • In Issue #41 of MAD (from 1958), the cover picture of Alfred E. Neuman is half-finished because the artist got a call from Time magazine. Cut to the article "The Next Day's Headlines" which shows disastrous headlines based on the advice columns shown on the previous page... and one about Time firing their new artist because all their people looked like Alfred E. Neuman.
  • The Onion did it with pictures. The front cover of the February 21, 2011 issue shows a picture of Blake Griffin jumping over a car with the headline "Car Blake Griffin Dunked Over Vows Revenge". Cut to the March 21, 2011 issue which has the cover showing a picture of Blake Griffin run over by a car with the headline "Car Blake Griffin Dunked Over Exacts Bloody Revenge".

    Professional Wrestling 
  • In one episode of WWE Monday Night RAW, The Hurricane was trying to teach his sidekick, Rosey (an over-300-pound Samoan), how to be a superhero. His lesson for the day was how to change into his costume in a phone booth. Roughly an hour later in the show, we see Steve Austin walking backstage... and he happens across the phone booth, in which Rosey is trapped by his own girth.
    Rosey: (pleading) Can you let me out? Please? I'll pay you!
  • Near the beginning of an episode of WWE Monday Night Raw, Booker T starts his Catch-Phrase ("Can you dig that... SUCKA!") to Chris Jericho, who cuts him off and leaves. About an hour and a half later, as Jericho's heading to the ring for his match, Booker pops up to finish: "—SUCKAAAAA!"
  • In 2009, Edge mocked Sheamus, comparing him to Beaker. Two years later, when the Muppets appear on Monday Night Raw, Sheamus tells Beaker that he "can't make it to the family reunion this year."
  • During the three-way John Cena, CM Punk, and Alberto Del Rio feud for the WWE Title, Cena and Punk would frequently mention mullets and skateboards to new General Manager John Laurinaitis for seemingly no reason. After the jokes became less frequent, CM Punk played a montage of Laurinitis clips from the early 90s, during his time wrestling in the Dynamic Dudes with Shane Douglas, complete with skateboard and mullet.
  • WWE pulled off one of the longest Brick Jokes in history — a 14-year long joke. Back in 1998, Mae Young gave birth to a hand in an angle that has never been spoken of since. On the 1000th episode of WWE Raw (2012-07-23), AJ Lee and Layla El opened their dressing room door to a guy dressed as a hand and Mae, introducing her "son". Even announcer Michael Cole wound up corpsing at it.
  • One potential Brick Joke stems from a segment on the June 23rd, 2003 edition of Raw in which Kane breaks a mirror shortly before his unmasking against his will. A seven year run of big losses and bad breaks follows this, concluding on the June 22nd, 2010 edition of Smackdown where he loses to CM Punk. Immediately after this seven year run ended, he went on an eleven match winning streak, including his first World Heavyweight Championship victory in over a decade. The incident is never brought up or referenced in any way until one Reddit user notices in late 2013.

  • A brick with relatively short air-time — in one episode of Hello Cheeky, Tim announces that they'll be broadcasting Rigoletto in two parts. This is immediately followed by a cry of "Rigo—", and fifteen minutes later, we hear a yell of "—letto!"
  • Round the Horne managed a clever two-stage joke: early in the episode, Kenneth Horne is phoned by a listener, and Horne asks him "can you give me your name?", to which the man replies "Elias Mooseblaster." Elias then asks Kenneth to give him his name. They then say goodbye, apparently literally having given each other their names. Later on, the Australian character, Judy Coolibahnote , makes fun of a man called "Dunnet", which sounds rather like "done it", and she remarks that men with suggestive names should have them changed. She then asks Horne what his name is. Horne then gives his name as "Elias Mooseblaster."
  • In Season 64, episode 3 of I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue, recorded in York, Jack's introduction to the city includes casually mentioning that Captain Cook was born there and died mysteriously in the Pacific, leading into a joke about the first England/Australia cricket match. He then continues on the cricket theme by describing how Yorkshire County Cricket Club changed its rules from insisting players were born in Yorkshire to just having an ancestor with Yorkshire blood. The first player to take advantage of the new rules was a Pacific islander whose great-grandfather ate Captain Cook.
  • "... a-monga!"

  • Destroy the Godmodder has a handful of these. Namely Dave, a mostly pathetic robot who was repeatedly summoned, and repeatedly destroyed. Not many people found it funny though.
    • More successful recently. Upon being reminded of this by the TV Tropes page (stated by him in the post), the owner of Dave proceeded to summon him again. One game after his most recent death.

    Stand-Up Comedy 
  • Ron White had one happen to him, thanks to being a smartass. When Ron was 17 years old, he was arrested, and the arresting officer asked if he had any aliases. Ron responded "Yeah. They call me 'Tater Salad,'" as a joke. Seventeen years later, after getting thrown out of a bar in New York City, Ron was arrested again. The arresting officer asked "Are you Ron 'Tater Salad' White?"
    • However, when he told the joke during a 2005 TV special entitled The Ron White Show, the bar was located in Texas.note 
  • Many Comics may point out something in their anecdotes then later on use it as a punchline, leaving those that come in later confused at why people are laughing so hard at something that seems unimportant.
  • The first Blue Collar Comedy movie has Jeff Foxworthy recounting a story told to him about a man who, upon hitting a beaver with his car, picked up said beaver upon mistaking it for dead, and managed to have it bite his nipple off. On a signature redneck joke to close the movie: "If you've ever had your nipple bitten off by a beaver, you might be a redneck."
  • In Margaret Cho's stand-up special I'm The One That I Want, she talks about how her gay friends taught that the best way to quickly finish a guy during oral sex is to finger his ass while blowing him. She quotes, "You wanna go home don't you? You can wash your hand at home!" and mimics driving home with one finger off the wheel. Much later in the show, she mentions how someone once asked her if she's worried about embarrassing her Korean family. She replied, "I'd embarrass any family!", and once again starts "driving" with one finger up.
  • Gabriel Iglesias tends to have these for each standup special he does. The longest one he does references a gag he did in the previous stand-up special about his friend Philippe, who always gets Gabriel in trouble.
  • On Hannibal Buress' album My Name is Hannibal, Hannibal talks about buying prosthetic metal arms just in case something happens to his real arms. Near the end of the album, after joking about one of his cousins flipping out and cutting his arms off, Hannibal brushes it off with "Whatever, I got these metal arms!"
  • Danny Bhoy has a bit where he mocks the Australian term for a liquor store, "bottle shop", by acting out the meeting during which Australians voted on it (it narrowly beat out "shop bottle"). At the end of the meeting the leader tells everyone to come back next week because "apparently there's already a place called South Wales somewhere, we'll need to think of something else". Danny then says that most of the audience probably won't get the last part of that joke, but someday in the future they might happen to look at a map of Australia, see the area labelled "New South Wales", and then burst out laughing.
  • Early on in one of Dara Ó Briain's live shows, he interrupts one of his routines to go off on a short and seemingly irrelevant tangent about how much he hates those hands-free bathroom soap dispensers and how pointless they are. At the end of the show, he's built up to a lengthy routine about security systems, which ends in a hypothetical situation where someone has tried to use a frying pan to defend their house and accidentally killed a burglar, and has to get rid of all the evidence. They look down at their filthy, blood-stained hands, wondering how they're going to clean them without leaving any trace of evidence... and then realise that if they had a hands-free bathroom soap dispenser, they could use the soap to clean their hands without leaving any traces on the soap dispenser.
  • John Mulaney makes extensive use of these in his routines.
  • While Eddie Izzard often employs this at least once per show, in one instance he notably ends up expanding on content from his Circle tour in Force Majeure, prompting a series of punchlines triggered by content from eleven years ago. Specifically, an instance of ordering penne at a canteen prompts Darth Vader to reappear, again leading him to try and escalate things into a fight over trying to order it.
  • In "Old Weird Harold (9th Street Bridge)", Bill Cosby and his friend, Harold, are forced to walk home alone late at night without parental supervision. Alone and scared, a nameless whino accidentally startles them, and in blind fear, they trample him, sending him to the hospital. During the next routine of the same album, Bill tells about a prank gone horribly wrong in which he tries to scare his other friend, Fat Albert. It ends with Bill getting trampled by Fat Albert, and going to the hospital, and being placed by a "whino who was run over by two kids". He and the whino end up agreeing that frightened people are very difficult to get along with.

    Theater/Stage Shows 
  • British mentalist/illusionist Derren Brown did it in two different stage shows.
    • In his third show, An Evening of Wonders, during the show broadcast on TV, he played a game of 20 Questions with several members of the audience. One, he sent back, saying he was too unsure of her object (brick number 1). Later, he performed the "Oracle Act" (it's billet reading). Seems one teenaged boy, on a dare from his friends, had written only the word "cock" on his billet, much to everyone's amusement (except Derren's, obviously) (and, by the way, brick number 2, although unintentional). Both bricks pay off at the end of the show, when he unrolls a big scroll that had been in a box since the beginning. On the scroll, he had written the word "bracelet" three times, and the lady that he had sent back revealed that she had thought of a bracelet during the 20 Questions segment. Upon finding this out, Derren said, "That kid's right, I am a cock!"
    • And then in his fourth show, Enigma, at the beginning of the show, he asked people in the audience to write down a list of their three favorite things, and he would have a member of the audience draw one, and then by the audience member saying random words, Derren would guess the items. The first item that was written down on the chosen slip, he guessed was a favorite band, but couldn't identify the band. Upon finding out that the band was Mc Fly, he simply said, "Never heard of them." Guess who performed a song revealing one of his predictions at the end of the show?
  • The comedy pair Rahmens uses Brick Jokes in their routines.
    • The best example is probably this one:
    (about namehage) "Who drove the demons out of Akita?"
    "This mystery will be unraveled in... (looks at watch) 14 minutes."
    • It is indeed revealed about 14 minutes later. A pun reveals it was Momotaro.
  • Bill Cosby has a story about the time him and Old Weird Harold went to a scary movie. They got so scared that they got down on the floor and didn't get up until 10 o'clock. They were so frightened on the walk home that when a wino stumbled a little too close to them, they trampled him in terror. Later, he tells another story about a game called "Buck Buck", which involves one team trying to get the other team to collapse under their weight. After their opposing team shows confidence in the fact that they would never collapse, Cosby's team brings out their secret weapon: Fat Albert. The opposing team surrenders the second they see him. "Now, I told you that story to tell you this one". Cosby then tells the story of the time they scared Fat Albert, but Cosby forgets that he was standing behind Fat Albert. He ends up in the hospital and shares a room with a wino who was trampled by two kids, and they both agree that frightened children are very dangerous.
    • Bill enjoyed this technique. His famous "Chocolate Cake for Breakfast" starts with his wife waking him up at weird o'clock in the morning so he can start making their children's breakfast. After some protest about how it's not healthy to eat this early, he heads down and gets to work, leading to a long and hilarious story about how his youngest asks for chocolate cake and he realizes how HEALTHY it is. (Eggs! Milk! Wheat! Oh, goody!) By the time, his wife comes down, all the kids are eating chocolate cake; she grows furious and they blame him...
      "And my wife sent me ... to my room." (smile) "Which is where I wanted to be in the first place."
  • In Ellen DeGeneres's stand up special Here and Now, early on, she talks about procrastination, and, quite appropriately, gets sidetracked. About an hour later, she returns to the topic out of the blue.
    • Also, in her later special The Beginning, she talks about needing silence in her life. Then she tells an increasingly bizarre story involving a vegan food shop, and a sex toy store, culminating in her being arrested while wearing nothing but a captain's hat and a paddle, along with her new blow-up doll named "Linda".
    Cop (In story): You have the right to remain silent.
    Ellen: And I was like "Thank you! That's what I've been looking for all along!"
  • The juggling pair Strahlemanne and Söhne do one of these at Carl-Einar Häckner's 2013 variety show and at least one another performance. At the start, they both take a bow, with Söhne reaching into his breast pocket to display his pocket handkerchief. Strahlemanne digs around in his own pocket, but finds nothing. They begin juggling, and as they do, they take off their clothes and throw them to one another. When they're both stripped to the underwear, they begin putting on the other's clothes. At the end, when they're fully dressed again, Söhne moves to adjust his handkerchief but finds nothing. Strahlemanne reaches into his own breast pocket and tugs it up with a smile.
  • In the final scene of the 2013 musical adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, a bit of Breaking the Fourth Wall reveals that Willy Wonka's going to enter the audience's world to continue his creative work. This becomes a brick joke when, during the curtain call, he initially reappears in one of the theatre's box seats to applaud Charlie as he takes his bow.
  • In the first scene of Boston Marriage, Anna's maid reports that the cook has quit, and also that she "said as how you could kiss her arse. Till... She said some holiday, but I've forgot it." In the final scene, the maid comes in with an apparently urgent announcement, only to be repeatedly shushed — but when she does get to deliver it, it's only that she's finally remembered that the holiday in question was Michaelmas.

    Theme Parks 
  • When Ooblar breaks into Jimmy's laboratory in Jimmy Neutron's Nicktoon Blast, he creates a large, Yolkian-shaped hole in the wall. Later, at the end of the ride, this hole is now seen patched up with a bunch of wood, only for the hole to be opened up again when King Goobot blasts his way in.
  • When the ride vehicle gets hijacked on The Great Movie Ride, the tour guide tells the riders that they’ll be back after they get some popcorn. Later after the hijacker is killed, the tour guide returns, saying, “See, I told you I was just going for some popcorn!”

    Real Life 
  • On July 8, 1958, New York Yankees manager Casey Stengel gave testimony before the Senate Anti-Trust and Monopoly Subcommittee. During the mid-20th century, Stengel and Yogi Berra were both thought to be Baseball's premiere Cloudcuckoolanders. However, with his Stream Of Consciousness "Jabberwocky"-like testimony, Stengel revealed that he was really the Bunny-Ears Lawyer of baseball. And the brick joke? That would be Mickey Mantle's One-Liner at the very end.
  • In 2008, someone created a Frank N. Furter Twitter account and tweeted "I see you shiver with antici..." Five years to the day later, they tweeted "...pation." Both tweets promptly went viral.
  • In 2009, a Twitter user named Marcus Lepage sent out the tweet "Going to sleep." The account lay quiet for seven years, until it was followed up with the tweet "Fuck, I slept in." Like the Frank N. Furter account above, this too went viral.
  • This anecdote involving a young boy who once met Roger Moore at the airport and was initially saddened that his name was not really James Bond. Moore convinced him that he was James Bond, but had to sign his name as "Roger Moore" because Blofeld might find out where he was. The young fan met him again years later, and Sir Roger made the same gentlemanly snarker.
  • One anonymous poster on 4chan replied to a post, stating that he "didn't have a slowpoke slow enough for this", and that he'd be back two years later. He was.

The boomerang has returned!
Statler: I just don't understand this brick joke trope. (brick lands on head)
Waldorf: Now THAT'S what I call a brick joke! Do-ho-ho-hoh!