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Disproportionate Celebration

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Hooray! He's finally done it! Look at him jump! Look at him yell! Look at his victory dance! At long last, he's finally... won fourth place in a tic-tac-toe tournament?

Disproportionate Celebration, usually Played for Laughs, is when a character treats a minor achievement as much more impressive than it actually is, and congratulates themselves profusely and/or expects a massive reward. Other characters may also participate in the gag by joining them in their revelry, whether sarcastically or sincerely. This is often Justified by the character being so incompetent at something that even a small achievement in that field is genuinely a massive step forward for them.

Sub-Trope of Comical Overreacting. Compare Small Name, Big Ego and Wants a Prize for Basic Decency. Often crosses over with Unsportsmanlike Gloating if said achievement was winning at a competition.

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Examples:

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    Anime and Manga 
  • Played for Drama in the manga version of Rurouni Kenshin, where a minor antagonist celebrates when he manages to inflict a negligible wound on Kenshin. Based on this Kenshin concludes that all the guy's tough talk about how A Real Man Is a Killer and the antagonist's claims of being an experienced swordsman who has slain many people are all false. As Kenshin explains, someone with such a background would actually be disappointed in only managing to inflict such a minor injury instead of celebrating that he managed to wound his opponent at all. Soon afterwards Kenshin is proven right, and his opponent descends into a Villainous Breakdown.

    Comic Books 
  • In Asterix the Gaul, Getafix and Asterix are captured by Crismus Bonus and are forced to brew their legendary Super Strength-inducing magic potion for him. Instead, they brew a dud potion. Deciding to test if the potion worked, he tries to lift up a fallen tree, only to fail. Thinking he set his sights too high, he tries and fails to lift successively smaller and smaller objects until he finally lifts a small rock with his natural strength, then begins to cheer, thinking he's obtained super strength.

    Comic Strips 
  • Calvin and Hobbes:
    • In one comic, Calvin gets an A on an assignment. He pictures the entire city celebrating his achievement with a parade, with the mayor even presenting the key to the city to him. Justified, as Calvin usually performs horribly in school in subjects other than writing.
    • In another strip, he sees the first robin of spring and excitedly tells his mom to call the paper while running around in circles, expecting a front page write up, a civic ceremony, and enough prize money for a trust fund. Unfortunately, not only does his mom tell him that it doesn't work that way, it turns out Hobbes already saw a robin the previous day!
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    Film 

    Religion and Mythology 
  • In The Four Gospels, in a parable about repentance, there is one about a woman who lost a coin. When she found it after hours of searching and cleaning, she tells her neighbors about it, and they celebrate with her.

    Video Games 
    Western Animation 
  • Ben 10: Alien Force: In "Double Or Nothing", when Albedo causes destruction throughout the city as Ben, Ben tells Gwen and Kevin that he was studying for a test as an alibi. When the tests come back, Ben receives a C+ and goes out for smoothies to celebrate, considering it a massive achievement by his standards. Gwen is genuinely impressed by his score and apologizes for doubting him.
  • The Spongebob Squarepants episode "Big Pink Loser" has Patrick trying to open a jar, and idiotically failing to do so, but Spongebob is there to help him. Spongebob suggests Patrick that he do exactly what he does, and when Patrick opens the jar, both him and Spongebob celebrate for it.
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