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Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!

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Irwin: What if this kid's telling the truth? We can't have toys out on the market that may be dangerous.
Larry: [lackadaisical] How can they be dangerous? Everything on them is standard. The design is standard, the materials are standard... the mechanicals are standard. Even the... [sudden Oh, Crap! face] Oh.
Irwin: What's "Oh"?
Larry: What?
Irwin: You just said "Oh".
Larry: No, I said "Oh!"
Irwin: You mean "Oh" like, "That's interesting" or "Oh" like, "We're screwed"?
Larry: No. I mean, "Hey! Whoa! Oh!". Look, forget the "Oh". I'll go to legal to start on the countersuit.
Irwin: The chips! That's the "Oh"!
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Bob has the situation under control, and is explaining it to his partner, Alice. While he initially thought everything was fine and going to plan, it's only once he stops to think about it and hears himself say it aloud that he realizes how much trouble he and Alice are really in.

Essentially, a case of in-universe Fridge Logic (or Fridge Horror) catching up to the characters, can be Played for Laughs or drama. Can be triggered by the listening party's Let Me Get This Straight... putting a new perspective on Bob's explanation.

The Oh, Crap! can also be simply that there really is No Time to Explain. Some situations go further with this, having the feared event happen directly after it's realized, which is a case of Five-Second Foreshadowing.

The Placebo Eureka Moment is an inverse, in which the act of explaining leads to a solution rather just than a realization that there's a problem. Not to be confused with I Can Explain or Not Helping Your Case.

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Compare Punch! Punch! Punch! Uh Oh..., You Answered Your Own Question, Delayed "Oh, Crap!" (when the character doesn't realize how screwed they are until after they're done explaining), Digging Yourself Deeper (when a character's already in trouble and doesn't realise they're giving away more than they should until it's too late, upon which this trope swiftly applies), and I Never Said It Was Poison (when the realization is that there's something previously told by another character that doesn't fit the facts or make them fit all of a sudden).


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Examples:

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    Asian Animation 
  • Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf: In episode 3 of Great War in the Bizarre World, when the Queen explains that Darton leaves a mark on all who are under his control, she caps it off saying it's hard to explain. Then an X-circle mark appears on her belly, and Slowy asks if that's the mark he leaves. The Queen says yes, and it takes a Double Take for her to realize what just happened; she's corrupted shortly afterwards.

    Board Games 
  • In Chess, one of the methods for dealing with a speculative sacrifice by an opponent is known as the show me method. If you can't see the point of the sacrifice, or even if you do see the point but don't think it will be all that effective, the recommended course of action is to accept it and continue playing natural moves, daring the opponent to show you their idea. Sometimes this works and the sacrifice fails. When it succeeds, however, you end up with this trope.

    Comedy 
  • Ron White has a bit where he mocks homophobia and explains that "We're all gay, it's just to what extent are you gay."
    [My friend] said, "Man, that's bullshit! I ain't gay at all!"
    I said, "Yes you are, and I can prove it."
    He said, "Fine. Prove it."
    I said, "Well, you like porn, don'tcha?"
    He said, "Of course I like porn!"
    I said, "Well, do you only watch scenes with two women together?"
    He said, "Naw, I'll watch a man and a woman makin' love."
    I said, "Then I guess you prefer it if the guy has a tiny, half-flaccid penis, right?"
    He said, "Naw man, I like big, hard, throbbin' co-" (extended Jaw Drop) "...I did not know that about myself."
  • Josh Wolf's son explains to him how "the cloud" works. For Context, said son sent someone a picture of his dick.
    "Okay, Dad: You take a picture on your phone, and it goes to the iPad."
    I'm like, "What else?"
    "Mom takes a picture on her phone, and it goes to the iPad."
    I'm like, "What else?"
    "I take a picture on my phone, and oh no."
    Comic Books 
  • Played for laughs in the Garth Ennis-written Adventures of the Rifle Brigade. Captured by the Nazis, Lieutenant Cecil asks Captain Darcy just what the mission was in the first place. Darcy is confused as Cecil was the one who called to set it up. It turns out Cecil had called to say "it's on," meaning a stag party for a friend but Darcy misunderstood.
    Darcy: I say... so when I phoned back to tell you it was all arranged and the Berlin Express left at seven, you assumed an op had come up and we'd have to skip the party. Which means...
    Cecil: Yes, sir. We've gone a commando raid by mistake.
  • Batman '66: Professor Overbeck while explaining why he doesn't think his brain regulator "could have been used to make a whole group of people... hysterical".
    Professor Overbeck: One would have to connect it to a broadcast antenna like the kind I use for transmitting long dis... GOTT IN HIMMEL! Mein antenna is gone!
  • Marvel Team-Up: One issue has Spider-Man attack the Human Torch, because he thinks the Fantastic Four have just tried to attack him. Johnny points out this isn't possible, since the rest of the FF are elsewhere doing their own things, and more to the point have no reason to attack Spidey (something he really should know). So the only explanation is that someone else with all their powers could have done that... at which point Johnny stops explaining and hurries back to the Baxter Building, where the Super-Skrull has escaped from the Can he'd been stuck in.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • In issue 247 of Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics), after yet another building in New Mobotropolis collapses due to something interfering with the nanites, Cream, after finding the Tails Doll, chews it out over its tendency to disappear... and in mid-sentence, recalls that its previous disappearances have corresponded with the other instances of buildings unexpectedly going unstable, and deduces that the doll itself is responsible. Her expression when this dawns on her says it all.
      Cream: Bad dolly! I'm trying to take care of you and find your owner, and you keep disappearing! ...Like at the Forget-Me-Knots concert. And this is just like what happened at the civic center...
    • A perfect example can be found in issue 8 of Sonic the Hedgehog (IDW), where after breaking through one of Dr. Eggman's bases and taking out some straggler robots, Sonic and Silver get some less than favorable info from one of the computers.
      Silver: It's almost like Neo Metal Sonic isn't hiding what he's doing any - OH, CRAP!
  • New Avengers (2015): Monica Rappaccini and Andrew Forson, former leaders of AIM, crash the funeral of Roberto Da Costa, using a specialized time-bubble. Forson notes that the only way to shield one's self from the time-bubble's effects would be in some sort of specially pre-prepared equipment which his scanners couldn't pick up, like if, say, they were hidden behind adamantium shielding... such as the adamantium in Da Costa's coffin. Surprise! It's a trap.
  • Planetary: In the penultimate issue, before departing from a parlay he invited them to in the desert, Snow claims that he's about to kill Dowling and Suskind. The two villains note that for all of his bravado, Snow has only ever known one thing that they didn't know themselves. Then they remember what that one thing is, namely the location of an alien spaceship hidden beneath Earth's surface. Snow has just tricked them into standing on top of that ship and has it blast off, killing them.
  • In Teen Titans, when District Attorney Adrian Chase is going after a tough mob, he brushes off Robin's concerns before returning home, where his wife tells him about the toy clown his uncle Arthur sent their son for his birthday.
    Chase: Uncle Arthur? My God, Doris—-I don't have an Uncle—- (cue massive explosion)
  • The Transformers: More than Meets the Eye: While making their way through what they believe to be the future Lost Light, Skids and company come across Minimus Ambus' body and the Magnus Armor. Skids notes that the former had his hand cut off to prevent him from using his emergency teleport while the latter has been destroyed by a fusion cannon, aka Megatron's Weapon of Choice. Megatron's attempts to defend himself end up steering him right into this trope.
    Megatron: Whoever killed Magnus knew about the teleport in his hand. I didn't even know there was a "Minimus Ambus" until... until... Until you just told me.

    Comic Strips 
  • Inverted in The Boondocks, Riley, having repainted several street signs to carry the names of rappers he likes, is approached by Cindy, who's also interested in doing so. Riley, however, is laying low due to the police looking for the culprit, and starts to warn Cindy that if she follows suit, she'll get caught- at which point he gets the idea to have her take the fall for his misdeeds.
  • As Calvin and Hobbes indicates, Bill Watterson loves this trope.
    • One storyline had C&H pushing the family car out of the garage so they could use the structure as a clubhouse, only to discover that the driveway is on an incline, which sends the vehicle careening into a ditch across the street. After they run away, Calvin's mother notices the situation, and begins to wonder aloud:
      Calvin's Mom: And how on Earth did they go in straight backward? To do that, the car would have had to come...right...out...of...OUR DRIVEWAY!
    • In another arc, the family goes to the zoo, and Calvin gets lost when he starts following a woman who looks like his mom. As Calvin's parents try to figure out where he's gone, Dad hits upon an idea—"Maybe Calvin's at the tiger pit, since he likes tigers so much." After walking a bit, he laughs to himself: "Ha ha, maybe Calvin's in the tiger pit, since he likes tigers so much." He then realizes that that's a perfectly plausible scenario and breaks into a run.
    • In one of the Transmrogrifier arcs, Calvin believes that he's been permanently transformed into an owl. He's delighted when Hobbes points out that this means he'll get to miss school the next day. Upon waking up, Mom points out that he's not an owl, and Calvin shouts with joy that he can...now go to school.
    • In one Sunday comic, a leaf pile comes to life and tries to eat Calvin. Calvin fights back with a rake, and resolves to spread the leaves across the yard so the pile can't eat anyone else. The last panel is of Calvin's mom and dad talking.
      Mom: I thought you said you were going to rake the yard today.
      Dad: I did rake the yard. I spent all afternoo- WHERE'S CALVIN?!
  • In one Garfield strip, Jon demands to know what Garfield did with Mrs. Feeny's dog, along with a bunch of stamps, a box, and some twine...before pausing in shock as his mind begins to connect the dots.
    Garfield: Take your time...It'll come to you.
  • In MAD, there are a few.
    • In the parody of The Godfather, when "Vino Minestrone" is warned that he's endangering himself by refusing to go into the drug trade.
      Vino Minestrone: Could I be harmed by that cute Italian fish peddler? By those sweet Italian kids, playing Hop-Scotch? By those nice Italian button men in their big black car... barreling down on me at 80 miles an hour? OH-OH!!
    • Subverted in "Ecch-Men"
      Judo-Lee: If they register me with the Federal Mutant Agency, I'll be taken away! That means I'll never see Mom and Dad again! Hey, cool!
    • In the parody of The Shining, Jack, talking with his predecessor as caretaker, has an example of this.
      Egbert Grisly: They TOLD me that I would rot in Hell!
      Wack Torrents: Well, I'm glad you learned your less— Wait a minute!! You mean THIS place is HELL?!?
  • In one The Wizard of Id strip, the Wiz declares that he's achieved military supremacy by creating the most explosive substance in existence. Upon realizing what he just said, he immediately screamed, "CALL IN THE BOMB SQUAD!"

    Films — Animation 
  • The Aristocats: In his overconfidence, Edgar reveals to Frou Frou the horse that he's the catnapper because he made the headlines in the newspaper and is gloating how the police won't find a single clue to implicate him — only to realize that he left his hat, umbrella, motorcycle sidecar, and the cats' basket back out in the countryside, and rushes out to retrieve them before the police find them.
    Edgar: Oh, they won't find a clue to implicate me. Not one single clue. Why, I'll eat my hat if they—... MY HAT! MY UMBRELLA! Oh, gracious! I've got to get those things back tonight!
  • Atlantis: The Lost Empire: Earlier in the film, Milo comments how the Shepherd's Journal mentions something called "The Heart of Atlantis", but it abruptly cuts off. He muses that it's "almost like there's a missing page". Then, after Milo and Kida discover the truth about the Heart of Atlantis…
    Kida: Then, where is it now?
    Milo: I don't know. I don't—you think something this important would've been in the Journal, but—! Unless… the missing page.
  • Inverted in The Black Cauldron, when the Horned King is destroyed by the titular cauldron, leading to this line from his abused minion, Creeper:
    Creeper: (gasp) Oh no! H-how horrible! Poor sire! (sniff) H-he's gone! (his eyes pop open in realization that he's now free of his Bad Boss forever, causing him to grin) He's gone! Ha! He's gone! (laughing heartily as he runs off) He's gone!
  • This hilarious line from BIONICLE: Mask Of Light, after Onua just caused a cave-in on top of the Rahkshi.
    Pohatu: Well done, but how did you keep the ceiling from collapsing... ON US TOO!
  • Brave: Merida has such a moment when she and her mother (who has been transformed into a bear) stumble across the ruins of an old castle. When Merida finds the ruins of the throne room, she sees a stone tablet depicting four brothers, one split off from the rest, similar to how Merida ripped the family tapestry during her fight with her mother. Remembering the story of the four princes that her mother had told her, Merida comes to the terrifying conclusion that not only is the legend true, but the spell that transformed her mother has happened before, and the eldest prince from the legend is none other than Mor'du, the monstrous bear from the beginning of the movie. And to make matters worse, he's standing right behind her.
    Merida: The spell… it's happened before. "Strength of ten men"… "Fate be changed"… Changed his fate. Oh, no! The prince became... (turns around, seeing a very monstrous but familiar face) Mor'du!
  • Finding Nemo has a scene where Peach wakes up to find that the tank has been cleaned overnight by a new filter system, foiling the gang's plan to escape.
    Peach: The sun is shining, the tank is clean, and we are getting out of— [gasp] The tank is clean. THE TANK IS CLEAN!!!
  • In Help! I'm a Fish, Fly tricks Joe into drinking more of the fish potion antidote that increases brain power by asking him several questions... when he asks Joe what happens if a fish drinks too much of it, Joe replies, "It becomes human!" And then...
    Fly: Can a human breathe underwater?
    Joe: Of course not— [eyes widen in shock as he gasps for breath and drowns]
  • Hercules:
    • Pain and Panic experience this when they work out that the warrior who beat Nessus the centaur is the same baby they failed to kill years ago (a fact they hid from Hades). The "Oh crap" is because not only did they figure it out right in front of Hades, but Hades himself has already figured this out as soon as heard the name, and he is very displeased about that.
      Pain: Wait a minute, wasn't Hercules the name of that kid we were supposed to...[trails off as he and Panic make the connection]
      Pain & Panic: OH, MY GODS!
      Hades: [grabs the imps by the throats] So you "Took care of him", huh? "Dead as a doornail." Weren't those your exact words?!
    • Meg, having fallen in love with Hercules, refuses to work for Hades any longer... which, unfortunately, convinces Hades that she is Herc's weakness.
      Hades: Meg, listen. Do you hear that sound? It's the sound of your freedom, fluttering away, forever!
      Meg: I don't care! I'm not gonna help you hurt him!
      Hades: [sighs] I can't believe you're getting all worked up over some... guy.
      Meg: This one is different. He's honest, and sweet...
      Hades: [rolling his eyes] Please...
      Meg: ...he would never do anything to hurt me...
      Hades: He's a guy!
      Meg: [smugly] Besides, O Oneness, you can't beat him. He has no weaknesses! He's gonna—
      [turns and sees Hades smirking at her]
      Hades: I think... he does, Meg. I truly think... he does.
  • Incredibles 2: In the aftermath of baby Jack-Jack's superpowered fight with the raccoon, Bob breaks it up, only to realise that Jack-Jack has superpowers (this was established in the previous movie, but the other Parrs didn't see Jack-Jack's powers at the time on account of the latter being too far away). Bob is initially elated, only for the realization that his already hard job as a House Husband is about to get ten times harder to slowly set in...
    Bob: You. Have. POWERS! YEAH, BABY!! And there's not a scratch on you! Did you go right through the locked door? Are those your powers? Haha! Who can multiply like rabbits and go right through any... solid...
    Jack-Jack: [Fires off a bunch of his powers at once.]
    Bob: ...Oh my God!
  • In The Land Before Time VI: the Secret of Saurus Rock, Littlefoot has to find the tooth of a sharptooth to repair Saurus Rock. He returns to the body of a sharptooth he and his friends mananged to kill and goes to work trying to pry out a tooth. It's hard work, but at least there's a breeze to cool him of. Except, Littlefoot is standing inside the sharptooth's mouth trying to remove the tooth. Littlefoot reasons there shouldn't be a breeze, then realizes that the sharptooth is breathing and is actually still alive, just as it starts to stand back up.
  • Legend Of The Guardians The Owls Of Ga Hoole: After Allomere brings a "moonblinked" Eglantine to Ga'Hoole and leads an army to attack St. Aegolius's, she awakens and tells Soren that their brother Klugg has joined the Pure Ones and that her "rescue" was staged. Hearing this, Soren realizes that Allomere was working with the Pure Ones all along and luring the Guardians into a trap, leading him to gather his friends and fly off to save them.
    Soren: Well, thank Glaux Allomere rescued you.
    Eglantine: I wasn't rescued. Kludd gave me to the owl who brought me here.
    Soren: No, Eg, no. That's impossible. I mean, that would mean that Allomere would have to be a... be a... a traitor. No, it's a trap!
  • Played for laughs in The LEGO Movie, when Emmett tries to argue that President Business can't be a villain.
    Emmett: But he's such a good guy. And Octan... they make good stuff: music, dairy products, coffee, TV shows, surveillance systems, all history books, voting machines... wait a minute.
  • The Little Mermaid (1989): Combined with Jerkass Realization. After Ariel is turned into a human and ends up on the surface, Sebastian is panic-stricken and tries to go back down underwater to inform her father, King Triton. When Ariel silently begs him not to, he starts to staunchly defend his decision, but soon realizes that he can't bring himself to go through with it, especially since Triton destroyed her prized collection the last time he tattled on her to save his shell.
    Sebastian: I'm gonna march meself straight home right now and tell him just like I should have done the minute—
    (Ariel picks him up and shakes her head with a pleading expression)
    Sebastian: And don't you shake your head at me, young lady! Maybe there's still time. If we could get that witch to give you back your voice, you could go home, with all the normal fish, and just be...
    (he notices that Ariel has a mournful expression on her face, and he starts to lose steam)
    Sebastian: Just be... Just be miserable for the rest of your life. (beat) All right, all right. I'll help ya find that prince.
    (Ariel perks up and gives him a big kiss, then sets him back down)
    Sebastian: Boy, what a soft-shell I'm turning out to be.
  • Mortal Kombat Legends: Battle of the Realms sees the Lin Kuei Grandmaster come to the horrific realization that he was the Unwitting Pawn of an Omnicidal Maniac upon talking about said Maniac — with said Maniac.
    Shinnok: What? You thought I had you chasing some bauble?
    Grandmaster: But... if it is put together —
    Shinnok: The One Being will come back — and destroy all of existence?
    Grandmaster: Yes. It is said that mad god Shinnok has searched... (realization strikes) You're Shinnok!
  • Over the Hedge: During the heist inside Gladys' house, the animals keep an eye on her by watching her through a TV hooked to her bedroom's surveillance camera feed. While they're in the kitchen, the coffee maker turns on and we get this exchange:
    Verne: What is that?
    RJ: That is what gets humans up in the morning.
    [three seconds later, they turn to the screen and see that the bed is empty]
  • Pinocchio:
    • When Honest John and the Coachman are negotiating their trade, Honest John has this to say.
      Coachman: ...and I takes them to Pleasure Island!
      Honest John: (pleasantly) Ahh, Pleasure Island... (eyes bulge) Pleasure Island?! But, the law!
    • Later on, when Jiminy discovers that the boys on Pleasure Island end up turning into donkeys.
      Jiminy: Boys? So that's what... PINOCCHIO!!!
    • Then later, during the final act, when Jiminy reads the Blue Fairy's message that Geppetto was Swallowed Whole by Monstro the Whale.
      Pinocchio: Swallowed by a whale?!
      Jiminy: (oblivious) Yeah, uh huh... (with realization) A WHALE?!
  • Pocahontas: Ben and Lon, Those Two Guys, find John Smith with Pocahontas and Grandmother Willow, who trips them with her root:
    Ben: Watch your feet, ya big oaf!
    Lon: It wasn't me, it was the tree!
    Ben: Oh, of course! The tree just felt like lifting its roots, and-- (Ben stops in mid-sentence when he and Lon turn around to catch Willow lowering her root) Let's get outta here!
    • Come to think of it, Ben downplays this trope by using sarcasm.
  • Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July: After Winterbolt is defeated and his magic is no more, Rudolph realizes that everything powered by him is now useless... including the amulets that kept Frosty and his snow-family from melting in the summer heat!
    Rudolph: Hey, wait a minute!
    Lilly: What is it, Blinky?
    Rudolph: If all his powers are gone, that means those amulets are no good either. [gasp] FROSTY! CRYSTAL!
  • Inverted in The Secret Life of Pets. After Duke knocks over a vase, Max panics, thinking that Katie will flip out, then pauses as though he's realized she might blame him for it. Instead, he realizes she's more likely to blame Duke, and promptly sets about knocking over everything in sight while Duke frantically tries to stop him.
  • At the climax of Treasure Planet, Robot Buddy B.E.N. gets his memory back... just in time to recall that Captain Flint's hoard of treasure is booby-trapped.
    B.E.N.: It's all flooding back! All my memories! Right up until Flint pulled my memory circuit so I could never tell anybody about his booby trap! [distant explosion] Speaking of which...

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Played for Laughs in Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, when Ace deduces that Ray Finkle is now Lois Einhorn, who he was attracted to:
    Ace: Finkle is Einhorn... Einhorn is Finkle... Einhorn is a man! [Beat] Oh, my God! Einhorn is a man?!
    [cue montage of Ace vomiting his entire stomach's contents into the toilet, burning his clothes, and then scrubbing himself down in the shower while sobbing]
  • Late in Apollo 13, after the astronauts have (with great difficulty) brought their damaged spacecraft around the moon and have detached the command module for reentry, they are able to make a visual inspection of the damaged service module and report what they see. At first this seems to be of only historical interest, since they've already discarded the service module and it no longer matters how much damage it took... until they realize the damage might not have been limited to the service module.
    Jim Lovell: Houston, we're getting our first look at the service module now. One whole side of the spacecraft is missing. Right by the high gain antenna, a whole panel is blown out. Right up... right up to our heat shield.
  • Aquaman (2018): Mera has a moment when she tries to explain to her father, King Nereus, that the surfacer attack was a False Flag Operation, and surely they weren't gullible enough to fall for it...? No, they weren't, they just thought a war with the surface was inevitable, and if Orm was willing to organize one and set himself up to take the political backlash, they lose nothing by playing along.
  • Back to the Future Part II: When Doc figures out he and Marty can just pick up Jennifer at hers and Marty's future home, Marty is happy at the prospect of meeting his future self but Doc starts explaining why it mustn't happen until he, by doing so, figures out there's a high probability Jennifer will meet her future self.
  • In Bedazzled (2000), when Elliot wishes to be a famous writer to impress Alison, they arrive at his apartment to find a man waiting in his bed. Elliot tries to convince Alison he's not gay, unfortunately...
    Elliot: Wait. This is a mistake. I'm not gay.
    Alison: Oh, really? And I'm Tony Danza!
    Elliot: Honestly, I swear it. I'm not.
    Alison: Then tell me, who was in the Broadway cast of The Pajama Game?
    Elliot: Janis Paige, John Raitt, Eddy Foy, Jr.
    Alison: I assume you mean the original cast because there was a revival in 1973 that starred...
    Elliot: Hal Linden and Barbara McNair—(With realization) I am gay!
  • Early in Clue, when the Guests are trying to figure out who killed Mr. Boddy, they hear someone screaming from the Billiards Room;
    Prof. Plum: It must be the murderer!
    Mr. Green: (Confused) Why would he scream?
    Mrs. White: He must have a victim in there. Oh my god, Yvette!
  • In Danger: Diabolik, having received word that Diabolik survived, Inspector Ginko receives what his sergeant believes to be Diabolik's death certificate but he knows is actually Ralph Valmont's death certificate. He then connects Valmont's cause of death to Diabolik's next big hit, based on what he knew about the emerald necklace that Diabolik had stolen.
    Ginko: Sergeant... this is our friend Valmont's certificate. Cause of death: eleven machine gun shots.
    [close-up on Ginko's eyes as he realizes the meaning of this]
    Voiceover: Eleven emeralds... eleven bullets...
    [Ginko suddenly gets up]
    Ginko: To the morgue!
  • Played for Laughs in Deadpool (2016). When Wade tells Weasel about his newly-active mutation and reveals his consequent visage, Weasel remarks that he needs "a suit and a nickname". On account of the ludicrously overpowered healing factor, Weasel suggests "Mr. Neverdie"... and then remembers that he had put a rather high wager on Wade's death in the merc-bar dead pool.
    Weasel: Ah, shit.
  • The short version: In Death Note, it was split. Light doing the explaining and Ryuk doing the Oh, Crap! reaction.
    • The long version: Ryuk wonders why Light was ignoring him. When Light in the convenience store explained to Ryuk that the former has a feeling that he's been watched via CCTV which means no Apples for Ryuk, it took a few seconds for the Shinigami to realize what Light meant and reacted in sorrow.
      Ryuk: Nooooooooo!!!
  • Demolition Man features a scene where John Spartan discusses with his two partners and the police chief what Simon Phoenix's next move would be. Spartan insists that it will be to get a gun, which the police chief insists is ridiculous — the only guns in San Angeles are in a museum...
  • In Die Hard, after John McClane tells Sgt. Powell to tell his wife that he loves her in case he doesn't make it out, Powell tries to reassure him that he'll survive. John says that "that's up to the man upstairs"... and remembers Hans Gruber's visit to the roof of Nakatomi Plaza earlier in the film, at which point he realizes that Hans was up to something funny. Sure enough, when he gets there, he finds that Hans is planning to blow up the roof with all of the hostages on it, along with the helicopters coming to rescue them.
  • After escaping from the Jones' suite in Don't Bother to Knock Jed tells Lyn about his night, saying that when he left Bunny was safe in bed. It then dawns on him that Bunny was in the wrong bed and wasn't moving (because she was bound and gagged.)
  • Don't Look Up: Giddy that his grad student has become the first to spot a new comet, Dr. Mindy gets out his old texts on orbital mechanics during the celebration and begins doing calculations on how closely the comet will be passing the Earth... Only for him (and the grad student) to realise that the calculations gradually boil down to 'zero'.
  • Dr. Strangelove:
    • The bomber has a chance to make it through! General Buck Turgidson explains that if the pilot's really good, they can fly "on the deck", below Soviet radar. Meanwhile (due to a malfunction, not strategy) the bomber in question is doing exactly that.
      Major Kong: Well, boys, we got three engines out, we got more holes in us than a horse trader's mule, the radio is gone and we're leaking fuel and if we was flying any lower why we'd need sleigh bells on this thing... but we got one little budge on them Rooskies. At this height why they might harpoon us but they dang sure ain't gonna spot us on no radar screen!
    • Early on, Group Captain Mandrake realizes there is no imminent Russian attack, and goes to tell General Ripper to call off his bombing mission. When Ripper challenges him on the facts, Mandrake counters:
      Mandrake: Well, I'm afraid I'm still not with you, sir, because, I mean, if a Russian attack was not in progress, then your use of Plan R — in fact, your order to the entire Wing... oh. ...I would say, sir, that there were something dreadfully wrong somewhere.
    • And near the end, after it's been outlined that if a single nuke lands on the Russians it's World War III, and the end of humanity, General Turgidson is asked if the remaining bomber has a chance at reaching its target and dropping its nuclear payload on it. Turgidson, having praised both crew and plane effusively, starts out with a cheerful "HELL YEAH!" until he visibly deflates, realizing they're doomed.
  • In Final Destination, Alex, believing he's next to die, is holed up in a cabin to protect himself when he sees a newspaper article about Christa and Blake, the two girls who asked him to trade seats with them on the plane. This gives him a "Eureka!" Moment that leads into this as it makes him realize that he never traded seats with them like in his premonition, which means that he's not the one who's next on Death's list... Clear is.
    Alex: I never moved. Christa asked me to change, but I never moved. I would have been up next to Tod. Fuck! Why didn't I remember that? I never moved, Clear's seat was in front of mine. She's next.
  • In The French Dispatch, an art agent smuggles supplies and bribes at great expense to an imprisoned genius painter, in exchange for rights to the masterpiece he will create. Once it's completed, he sneaks in to see the end product, and gushes over the amazing frescoes he's funded. He is still gushing, in fact, about how wonderful and valuable they are, when he realizes he just said they're frescoes (as in, painted directly onto the load-bearing prison walls, unremovable and unsellable).
  • In The Game Plan, when a little girl appears at football player Joe Kingman's apartment claiming she's the daughter of him and his ex-wife, Kingman and his agent are trying to figure out if the timeline tracks.
    Joe: [He and his ex-wife] got the separation, the divorce was final, she came by to pick up a few of her things and then we... We — Is anyone else hungry?
  • In Godzilla (2014), when the MONARCH team discovers that the two Mutos have been communicating with each other, Serizawa explains that the female Muto's egg is currently located at the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository — which is not only filled with radioactive waste (which the Mutos feed on), but also happens be located right outside Las Vegas.
  • The Guard: Gerry realizes the full influence of the drug operation when he points out that bribing, blackmailing, or killing him wouldn't matter under ordinary circumstances.
    Gerry: What's the point in paying me off? You'll have to pay off every other guard on the West Coast.
    Sheehy is silent, and smiles a little.
    Gerry: The lot of them?
    Sheehy: Enough as makes no odds.
  • Hairspray (2007): At the film's climax, Velma has police at the TV station to prevent Tracy from getting in and entering the pageant. At one point, Tracy's allies lock them out, and the police use one of the giant hairspray cans at the front of the station to break the doors open. When they meet Velma deeper in the station...
    Velma: Finally! How long does it take to break down a door?
    Policeman: That hairspray battering ram was heavy.
    Velma: Heavy? How can they be heavy, they're—(Beat)...hollow.
    (Velma rushes back towards the entrance alongside the police, and finds the giant hairspray can lying empty, a door on its side wide open)
    Velma: Oh, my God. YOU CARRIED HER IN!
  • In Herbie Rides Again, Mrs. Steinmetz and Willoughby trick Alonzo Hawk's wrecker into knocking down Hawk's own house. (In reality, Hawk had ordered his wrecker to knock down their firehouse). Alonzo's retorts?
    Wrecker: Sorry to disturb you at this time of night Mr. Hawk, but a guy at my job can't afford to make mistakes!
    Hawk: What are you talking about?
    Wrecker: That address you gave me on the phone...?
    Hawk: What about it?
    Wrecker: "343 Oleander Heights." Are you sure that's the right address?
    Hawk: Of course I'm sure, you idiot! I know it as well as I know my own address! [hangs up] Wait a minute... IT IS MY OWN ADDRESS!!
    [Hilarity Ensues]
  • Averted in Hero (2002). The emperor calmly explains that Nameless is clearly lying about the earlier assassinations, and therefore must be there to kill him. When Nameless asks how long he's known, he replies that he figured it out while they were talking, too late to stop Nameless from getting close enough to kill him. He never shows any emotion at the fact that he's moments away from death.
  • The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey has an example where it's one character talking to himself that leads him to a conclusion.
    Radagast: I don't understand why it's not working! It's not as if... it's witchcraft. (Beat) Oh, but it is.
  • Inverted in Home Alone and its sequel, where Kevin starts out shocked when he's separated from his family before realizing that he can now do whatever he wants.
  • In Spike Lee's Inside Man, Denzel Washington's character is talking about how they plan to retake the bank, only to realize the bank robbers are wiretapping them, and know about the impending SWAT team raid, which he then tries to stop, unsuccessfully.
  • In Machete, Booth's guards go through this when Machete infiltrates their boss' mansion by posing as a menial gardener. They let him through without any real check, then question why they weren't more thorough because he could be anybody, then realize their stupidity.
    Guard: Did you ever notice how you let a Mexican into your home just because he's got gardening tools? I mean, no questions asked, you just let him right in. He could have, y'know, a chainsaw or a machete...
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • The Avengers: After a battle on the helicarrier that leads to Agent Coulson's death, Steve Rogers and Tony Stark discuss Loki's next move in the following exchange:
      Tony: He crossed a line. He made this personal.
      Steve: That's not the point...
      Tony: No, that is the point. That's Loki's point. He hit all of us right at where we live. Why?
      Steve: To tear us apart.
      Tony: Yeah, divide and conquer's... great... but, he knows he has to take us out for him to win, right? That's what he wants! He wants to beat us; he wants to be seen doing it. He wants an audience.
      Steve: Right. I caught his act in Stuttgart.
      Tony: Yeah, that's just previews, though. This is opening night! And Loki, he's a full-tilt diva, he wants flowers, he wants parades, he wants a monument built to the sky with his name plastered...
      [Beat; Steve raises his eyebrows pointedly at Tony's choice of description]
      Tony: Son of a bitch. [He realizes Loki will use his own Stark Tower for summoning the Chitauri.]
    • In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Agent Sitwell, after some High-Altitude Interrogation, reveals the plan to give HYDRA control of Project Insight, and use it to kill anyone who might potentially oppose them. Then he realizes he'll probably be one of the first ones they kill with it, and pulls an Enemy Mine.
    • In Avengers: Age of Ultron, as the Avengers are laying low at Barton's farm and discussing Ultron, Tony and Banner focus on how he keeps building humanoid forms even though, as a sapient A.I., it's a rather impractical choice. From this they deduce that he's trying to prove himself superior to them, then Banner realizes they haven't heard from Dr. Helen Cho for a while.
    • In Captain America: Civil War, this is how Team Cap realizes that someone inside the UN framed Bucky for the bombing in Vienna. They're talking about everything that doesn't add up about the incriminating photo (since as the Winter Soldier, he went fifty years without ever being photographed in the field), and (correctly) conclude that it was faked with the goal of setting off a worldwide manhunt:
      Sharon: ...But that still doesn't guarantee that [whoever framed him] would get him, it guarantees that we would.
      [dramatic zoom in on supposedly the psychologist Dr. Broussard, actually Baron Zemo]
    • In Ant-Man and the Wasp, when Hank Pym's lab has been stolen, he goes to his old colleague Bill Foster, who suggests using a defractor to track down the lab. However, since the newer suits don't have defractors, but the old ones did, Scott reveals that he didn't destroy Hank's old suit, and hid it in a trophy that Cassie had given him. When Scott calls Luis to find the trophy, only to reveal that it's not there, Scott realizes that Cassie had taken it to show and tell when he told her not to.
      Scott: You got to be kidding me. I put it right up there after Cassie and I... (Beat) Show and tell.
    • When the villains of Spider-Man: No Way Home meet up and realize they've been pulled into the MCU moments before their deaths, Electro doesn't believe it, up until he recounts the events up to his arrival.
      Max: Aw, please. Lemme tell you something: I was whooping Spider-Man's ass. He'll tell you. And then he caused an overload—I was stuck in the grid, absorbing data—I was about to turn into pure energy, and then I... And then... (Quietly) Oh shit. I was about to die.
  • Monty Python and the Holy Grail has a variation with the Trojan Rabbit, as King Arthur and his knights — including Bedevere, Lancelot and Galahad — watch the large wooden rabbit they've constructed be towed into the French castle from a distance:
    King Arthur: What happens next?
    Sir Bedevere: Well, now, uh, Lancelot, Galahad, and I wait until nightfall, and then leap out of the rabbit, taking the French by surprise — not only by surprise, but totally unarmed!
    King Arthur: ...Who leaps out?
    Sir Bedevere: Uh, Lancelot, Galahad, and I. Uh, leap out of the rabbit, uh, and uh...
    [Sir Bedevere looks around and realizes that he forgot to explain the part where they are supposed to climb INTO the rabbit, and said named people are not actually in the rabbit; everyone begins to Face Palm]
    Sir Bedevere: Um, l-look, if we built this large wooden badger... [gets dope-slapped]
  • The Mummy (2017): When the tomb of the titular character is discovered, Nick and Chris are sent in to check it with Jenny accompanying them for a historian's perspective. As they enter the burial chamber Jenny begins recording her observations, including what seems to be wrong with a lot of them: the guardian statues are facing inward rather than outward, there are no provisions for the journey to the afterlife, there are channels for liquid mercury to guard against evil spirits. After a few of these, she stops and says that this room layout wasn't designed to keep something safe. It was designed to keep something trapped.
  • In Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising, Teddy has one in regard to his former Wacky Fratboy Hijinx after Shelby and her Kappa sorority sisters tell him why they hate frat parties.
    Teddy: We had great parties! "Pimps and Hoes", "CEOS and Corporate Hoes", "Boise Boys and Ida-Hoes"...
    Shelby: They're, like, super sexist. Every party is, like, themed ho.
    Teddy: I mean... <eyes go wide> Oh, geez. Oh no. Oh God! Yeah, I see your point.
  • Towards the end of Now You See Me, Thaddeus Bradley mulls over how the Horsemen are still a step ahead of him and realizes that Dylan Rhodes, who he's talking to, is the fifth Horseman.
  • In Panic in the Streets, Captain Warren says that even if the dead man did have the plague, the man who shot him hadn't been within 10 feet of him. Dr. Reed then asks him how the body ended up on the riverbank. Warren starts that somebody could have carried it there, and stops suddenly with an Oh, Crap! look on his face.
  • In Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, Grover recognizes one of the statues at the Garden Gnome Emporium:
    Grover: Check this out... he looks just like my Uncle Ferdinand. [notices a mole on the statue's forehead] That's crazy. Got the mole in the same place. [Beat] Nah, that's not my Uncle Ferdinand, 'cause my Uncle Ferdinand was killed by... [Oh, Crap! face] Medusa.
  • In Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Sao Feng's men take a spy captive when negotiations with Elizabeth and Barbossa become tense, resulting in this exchange.
    Sao Feng: Drop your weapons, or I kill your man!
    Barbossa: [shares a confused glance with Elizabeth, then shrugs] Kill him, he's not our man.
    Will: Wait, if he's not with you, and he's not with us... who is he with?
    [a dozen EITC soldiers kick down the doors and open fire]
  • The Predator gives us this gem: "...the dumbest motherfucker I've ever met. Ha ha. I mean, a Ranger sniper tripping a wire sensors? He's gotta be... Creating a diversion!" Cue a Ranger sniper.
  • In The Producers, Franz Liebkind isn't sure if he's using a quick fuse or a slow fuse for the dynamite to blow up the theater, so he decides to check by cutting it and then lighting it. Seeing the speed the fuse was burning, he bragged to Max and Leo that his suspicions were right and it was the quick fuse...before realizing the implications:
    Franz: Ze kvick fuse!?! (theater blows up)
  • From Quick Change:
    Lt. Jameson: Chief, The Peruvian Connection. The Subway Psycho? The people are gonna remember what you've done. What's so memorable about a clown stealing a million dollars?
    (Rotzinger gives him a look.)
    Lt. Jameson: Jesus, we gotta get this guy!
  • In Real Genius, the gang are celebrating finally getting their laser working right. Eccentric genius Lazlo comes up and, while asking questions about how they did it, gets the group to realize what they just created: A beam of power hotter than the sun which is so strong it can only be used for fifteen seconds tops. That limits the applications it can be used for but makes it perfect for "the express purpose for which it was designed."
    Lazlo: Look at the facts. Very high powered. Portable. Limited firing time, unlimited range. All you's need is a tracking system and a, a large spinning mirror and you can vaporize a human target from space.
    (during his talk, Chris has stopped chewing his food and his grin slowly fades. By the time Lazlo is done, the rest of the group are sharing looks of stunned understanding at how they've been tricked into creating a military weapon.)
  • In Scrooged, Frank is led by the Ghost of Christmas Future to a private funeral ceremony. At first, he's convinced that his brother James was the deceased. But then James shows up with a minister, and Frank is initially overjoyed... until he slowly realizes that he is the one about to be burned.
    Frank: Oh, no. James... my brother... he's dead. Why did this have to happen? Well, when I get back, I'll... [he brightens up as James walks up to the coffin with a minister] THERE HE IS! JAMES! [he realizes something's not right] ...Who's in there?
  • From Serenity, after they see the destruction of Haven:
    Jayne: How come they ain't waitin'? They know'd we was comin', how come they only sent one?
    Zoe: ...they didn't know we'd come here. Get on the Cortex. Wave the Sanchez brothers, Li Shen — anyone who's ever sheltered us after a heist. Tell them to get out. Get out now!
  • In Short Circuit, Number Five makes the connection between death and disassembly after crushing a grasshopper, immediately realising he must abscond lest NOVA find and destroy (kill) him.
  • In Small Soldiers, after the designers of the Commando Elite get a call from the main character claiming that the toys have caused major damage to his house, the more aloof designer doesn't believe him because everything about the toys are standard...before realizing the chips he put into them were Army surplus munitions. When he has an Oh, Crap! expression, it doesn't take his associate long to figure out why.
  • Inverted at the end of Space Jam, after Swackhammer begins chewing the Monstars out for losing the basketball game:
    Jordan: Why're you taking it from this guy?
    Bupkis: Because he's bigger.
    Pound: He's bigger?!
    Bang: Bigger than we used to be...
    [the Monstars immediately turn on Swackhammer, who panics]
  • Star Trek:
    • An example of this coming way too late in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock: Klingon Commander Kruge sends his men to take control of the USS Enterprise after the ship's crew surrenders, but Kirk slips in a little surprise for the boarding party just before letting the Klingons take control.
      Torg: My lord, the ship appears to be deserted.
      Kruge: How can that be? They're hiding!
      Torg: Yes, sir. The ship appears to be run by computer. It is the only thing that is speaking.
      Kruge: Speaking? Let me hear it.
      [Torg holds the communicator over the computer, which is counting down. Kruge (who unlike his men can speak English) soon realizes it's the ship's Self-Destruct Mechanism]
      Kruge: GET OUT!!!! GET OUT OF THERE!! GET OUT!
      [The Enterprise explodes, killing all of the Klingons aboard]
    • In Star Trek: First Contact, Picard finds out that the Enterprise is experiencing environmental difficulties that started on deck 16 before spreading to the rest of the ship.
      Picard: Mister Hawk, before we lost internal sensors, what were the exact environmental conditions in main engineering?
      Hawk: Atmospheric pressure was 2 kilopascals above normal, 92% humidity, 39.1 degrees Celsius...
      Picard: 39.1 degrees Celsius... Like a Borg ship. They knew their ship was doomed, our shields were down and somehow they transported over here without being detected. They'll assimilate the Enterprise, and then... Earth.
    • In Star Trek: Nemesis, after negotiations with Praetor Shinzon of the Romulan Empire have gone south, the Enterprise is warping back to Federation space to join a Starfleet battle group. While en route, they enter an area called the Bazen Rift, which causes them to lose contact with Starfleet.
      Data: The rift affects all long-range communic—[Oh, Crap! face]
      Picard: [hits combadge] Commander Riker, evasive maneuvers!
      [the Enterprise shudders as Shinzon opens fire]
    • Star Trek Into Darkness: Kirk has something bothering him, and Admiral Marcus asks him to speak up. Kirk points out that the normal response to an incident such as Harrison's terrorist attack is to gather all the available captains and first officers in a single room. Like the one they are in now. And then he looks out the window and a light descends...
  • Star Wars:
    • A New Hope has Luke Skywalker realizing that the Empire, who slaughtered a group of Jawas that had captured and sold R2-D2 and C-3PO, the two robots the Imperials are after because of the Death Star plans they're also after, are now after his family.
      Luke: If they traced the robots here, they may have learned who they sold them to and that would lead them back... home!
    • In Return of the Jedi, at the beginning of the assault on the second Death Star, Lando Calrissian realizes that the Empire has lured the Rebellion into a trap.
      Lando: We've got to get some kind of reading on that shield, up or down. [...] But how could they be jamming us if they don't know... that we're coming? [Beat] Break off the attack! The shield is still up!
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze: When they discover that the Shredder plans to turn Tokka and Rahzar loose in Central Park unless the Turtles agree to fight them again, Donnie asks, "How are they gonna avoid all those people?" It's only after he says this that he realizes that Tokka and Rahzar aren't going to avoid the people.
  • In Thomas and the Magic Railroad, Mr. Conductor and Junior get a shared one when they realize Lady is integral to helping them get their gold dust back.
    Mr. Conductor: Lady! That engine's name is Lady! She's part of the clue to the source
    Junior: [simultaneously with Mr. C in realization] of the Gold Dust!
    [Both scream in fear]
  • In Wes Craven's New Nightmare, shortly after Julie's death, Dylan escapes from the hospital to get away from Freddy, while Heather desperately searches the building for him. When Dr. Heffner tells her that Dylan had been sedated, she explains that Dylan is prone to sleepwalking and is able to get out of the hospital if he wanted to, only to realize that he had probably done just that.
    Heather Langenkamp: [Dylan] doesn't have to be awake to be on his feet!
    Dr. Heffner: What?
    Heather Langenkamp: He sleepwalks, you idiot! He's fully capable of walking out of this hospital! (Beat) ...Oh, shit!

    Literature 
  • A variation occurs in Animorphs #16: The Warning:
    Tobias: Wait. You're saying I'm in a toilet bowl. And someone sat down. But then... oh, man.
  • A rather charming one in The Belgariad when Jeebers, an elderly personal tutor of her little Imperial Highness Ce'Nedra, explains to the heroes that the emperor has the utmost trust in him. Which is exactly why "the princess knocked on his door deep at night, revealing to him that he got tasked to help her to disguise herself, then sneak her out of the palace without anyone else noticing, and to then escort her (alone) across half the country" ...in a time when people are murdering each other in the streets due to all sorts of politics. Which is when he notices in sheer horror that the emperor had nothing to do with it and that this was all rebellious little Ce'Nedra's idea. Poor guy.
  • The Canaris Fragments by Walter Winward takes place during the Nuremberg trials of 1945. The main characters have discovered that a group of SS men plans to liberate the prisoners and have had the courthouse surrounded by security, but then they start discussing why a group of SS men would go through so much trouble and realize that Kaltenbrenner, the only high-ranking SS member among the defendants is not at the courthouse, but at a hospital at the other end of the city.
  • The Case of the Toxic Spell Dump: David's coworker Michael casts a spell to test if a sorcerer's flayed human skin substitute is being used for ritualistic purposes and it seems to exonerate the man. However, David quickly asks if the spell would have been ineffective if the "substitute" was real flayed human skin. Michael thoughtfully agrees that this would have nullified his test before horrifiedly realizing just where real flayed human skin would have come from and what it might be used for.
  • The Caves of Steel: When Life and Daneel visit a premier roboticist, Lije asks him about Ridiculously Human Robots, how they would be different from humans, and how easy it is to spot them. The man starts to confidently say how unlikely it is, then pauses as he realizes that Daneel meets the signs he just described. The man is embarrassed that it took him so long to notice.
  • Discworld:
    • Jingo:
    • In Feet of Clay, there are two major plot threads that the Watch are investigating. The first is a set of murders connected to the city's golem population (golems here being mostly magical beasts of burden). The second is repeated arsenic poisoning of Lord Vetinari. Vimes, Angua and Cheery discuss these at a late stage of the novel, and it becomes apparent that it's surprising they actually managed to track arsenic in any meaningful way. It gets used all over the city for all kinds of things - rat poisons, paints...
      Vimes: I'm surprised people aren't dropping dead of it all the time.
      Cheery: Oh, most people use golems, sir-
    • In Interesting Times, Rincewind learns that the revolution was spurred by the contents of a book titled What I Did On My Holidays, and finds a spot to read it himself. He finds it just describes things he finds rather mundane, like sausages made from "genuine pig product", and is completely unimpressed, but realizes that the book was written by his old traveling companion from The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic, Twoflower the tourist, and he went above and beyond painting Rincewind as a great hero and magus. Once again putting Rincewind in the hot seat, just like old times.
    Ha! Mister What-I-Did-On-My-Holidays should try coming to Ankh-Morpork next time, and see how much he liked one of old... Dibbler's sausages... full of genuine... pig product...
  • Hollow Kingdom (2019): After he witnesses his neighbor eating her dog, S.T. comes to the conclusion that she has the same sickness his owner Big Jim does. The crow then remembers that he left Big Jim's dog Dennis alone with him and promptly rushes home.
  • The 1980s Hardy Boys book "Blood Relations" has Frank and Joe convinced by Greg and Mike Rawley that their stepfather, Walter, is planning on killing his wife, Linda. Frank and Joe look into it when Linda is kidnapped, eventually bringing Walter to a house...where it turns out Linda, Greg and Mike are setting Walter up to kill him in "self-defense" for his fortune and using the Hardys to sell the plot. Frank reveals he'd already figured this out thanks to the Orgy of Evidence making this case so easy and shows up with a detective ally. But it turns out this "detective" is Linda's real husband and Greg and Mike's dad. The family gloats on getting away with it all...until it hits Greg that Frank had just said he figured this whole thing out before he came to the house. So if he knew this was a scam and "Dad wasn't a detective, why would he have trusted him to help?" They have five seconds to think about it before a couple of the Hardys' friends burst in to take Greg and Mike down just before the real cops arrive to arrest them all.
  • In the Honor Harrington novel At All Costs, there's an internal version when Admiral Chin wonders about the strange maneuvers of the Manticoran force that just hypered in behind her. Over the course of several paragraphs of narration, it dawns on her exactly which formation she is looking at... and what they're armed with.
    But if Third Fleet was what they'd just finished destroying, then these people had to be Eighth Fleet, which meant Honor Harrington. And Harrington didn't do things that didn't make sense. So what—?
    Her eyes opened wide in horror.
    "General signal all units!" she shouted, spinning towards her com section. "Hyper out immediately! Repeat, hyper out—"
    But it had taken Genevieve Chin two minutes too long to realize what was happening.
  • In Mission: Levity: "But how can there be gravity? The planet is too far away and there's nothing else there but that... ship..."
  • Jeeves and Wooster: Bertie's friend Gussie talks about how he's been writing down insults about his prospective father-in-law and Roderick Spode in a notebook which he misplaced.
    Gussie: Have you ever heard Sir Watkyn Bassett dealing with a bowl of soup? It's not unlike the Scottish express going through a tunnel. Have you ever seen Spode eat asparagus?
    Bertie: No.
    Gussie: Revolting. It alters one's whole conception of Man as Nature's last word.
    Bertie: Those were two of the things you wrote in the book?
    Gussie: I gave them about half a page. They were just trivial, surface faults. The bulk of my researches went much deeper.
    Bertie: I see. You spread yourself?
    Gussie: Very much so.
    Bertie: And it was all bright, snappy stuff?
    Gussie: Every word of it.
    Gussie: Reads it?
    Bertie: Well, he's just as likely to find the book as anyone, isn't he?
    Gussie: I never thought of that!
    Bertie: Start now.
  • Night Huntress: Main character Leila has been bound to someone so that if either dies, the other dies, so a shadowy group abducts that person and threatens to kill Leila unless Vlad kills Mencheres. When Mencheres realizes that Vlad didn't tell him about this in case he ended up with no choice but to go through with it, he's naturally upset.
    Mencheres: You would have widowed Kira. You would have brought war between our two lines, forcing Bones into a fight against your people that would have resulted in many deaths. Our allies would have been forced to choose sides, too, bringing more death, until you could have shattered the peace we've had since Apollyon failed to incite a war between vampires and ghouls—
    [cuts off as he, Vlad, Leila, and Veritas realize this was the point of the whole thing]
  • Ravelling Wrath:
    Rinn: That couldn't be right, could it? She wasn't afraid, it was just a reaction, like when I'd first summoned a Blood Blade. She knew I wouldn't actually hurt her, right? I was just blowing off steam! And besides, she had looked way more scared when the Blood Blade thing happened! And then she'd gotten back under control right away, because she knew it was just me and I wouldn't hurt her! Obviously! So obviously, THIS time, maybe I did some stuff I shouldn't have, and she got scared, but then I started backing off, and then she was… still acting scared… because… that meant…
    I had made her afraid of me.
  • In Wizard's First Rule, first book of the Sword of Truth series, Zedd invokes this on a mob that's coming to burn him for being a witch. Zedd asks them why, exactly, they want to burn him, and they say it's because of his horrible magic powers. Zedd asks them to elaborate and be more specific. As they list all the different ways that they think Zedd can throw magical wrath around, the crowd slowly realizes that attacking someone who can shoot fire out of his fingertips might not be the brightest idea after all.
  • Tales of the Five Hundred Kingdoms: One Good Knight: Andie has this reaction when she realizes she's just explained why her mother would want to rig the Human Sacrifice lottery to get rid of Andie.
  • In Timeline, one character is trying to convince the others that it is possible to travel to the past via a wormhole. Another character points out that it is impossible for a physical body to safely go through one. The first character retorts that the same can be said about a fax machine. The second character launches into trying to explain that the fax machine first has to convert the scanned data into a "stream of electrons", before realizing that the first character is talking about the same for the wormhole with a big, "Oh shit!"
  • Warhammer 40,000: A comedic version in the Ciaphas Cain novel The Traitor's Hand. Cain is discussing Mauve Shirt "Jinxie" Penlan with the command staff when her reputation comes up, and...
    Cain: "But she's not nearly as accident prone as she's supposed to be. I'll grant you she fell down an ambull tunnel once, and there was that incident with the frag grenade and the latrine trench, but things tend to work out for her. The orks on Kastafore were as surprised as she was when the floor in the factory collapsed, and we'd have walked right into that hrud ambush on Skweki if she hadn't triggered the mine by chucking an empty food tin away..."
    My brain finally caught up to what I was saying and I trailed off rather lamely. "Well, you know how soldiers exaggerate these things."
    • In the Horus Heresy novel Unremembered Empire, when Curze is on the loose in the Temple of Hera, the entire forces at nearby Residence sets out to hunt him down. One of the members of the strike force, Gantula, wonders aloud whether Curze is a predator, using a wolf as his example. Then this happens:
      Gantula: [...] So, while the herdsmen are occupied, guarding the herd, the wolf turns to where they are not - the larder, the granary, the stables, the bird cages... (beat) (Gantula stops and turns back, running to the Residence)

    Music 
  • Eminem's "Stan":
    I seen this one shit on the news a couple weeks ago that made me sick.
    Some dude was drunk and drove his car over a bridge,
    and had his girlfriend in the trunk, and she was pregnant with his kid,
    and in the car they found a tape, but they didn't say who it was to.
    Come to think about, his name was... it was you.
    Damn...
  • In Jon Lajoie's "WTF Collective", MC Uses Time Machines Irresponsibly does this:
    Then I traveled in time to the night I was conceived
    I met up with my parents and we hung out all night
    Come to think of it, they didn't have any alone time...
    NOOO
  • In the last verse of Mitch Benn's "Ed Sheeran is Everywhere", he complains that he was doing the guitar-and-looper thing first, and then starts to worry that maybe that's where Sheeran got the idea.
    Podcasts 
  • In the Rifftrax short "Reading: Who Needs It", a high school basketball coach and a teacher are discussing the fact that one of his players can't read:
    Coach: If he can't read, how'd he get through school?
    Kevin: That would mean we absolutely su... Oh.

    Puppet Shows 
  • Team America: World Police: Kim Jong-Il's translator, while interpreting for Kim during an arms deal, takes a moment to think about what he's translating. Unfortunately for him, the realization is the second-last thing to ever go through his head.
    Kim Jong-Il: [vaguely Korean-sounding gibberish]
    Translator: He asks what part of the deal you did not understand. He says that perhaps his translator did not make it clear to you. He says he should... f-fire his... translator?
    *BANG*
  • The Muppet Show:
    • In the Edward Burgen episode, the Muppet News Reporter comes in with a Muppet News Flash saying an embarrassing situation occurred when the Muppet News Reporter went on camera while forgetting to put on his pants...causing him to stop and look down behind his desk.
      Newsreporter: (Embarrassed) Oh, good grief. (Runs off)
    • In the Nancy Walker episode, Sam the Eagle gives an editorial about nudity, claiming that everyone is going around naked under their clothes. He then goes on to add that dogs and cats are also naked under their fur, and that birds too, under their feathers... And at this point, Sam stops, covers himself and runs off the stage.
    • Before the opening credits of the episode featuring Harry Belafonte, said guest star has a word with Scooter:
      Scooter: Say, is everything alright?
      Harry: Oh, yeah, everything's OK. Except I haven't done the show yet and somebody started to put me down.
      Scooter: No! What do you mean?
      Harry: Just now I heard somebody outside my door say, 'Don't go inside that dressing room. Crazy Harry's in there.'
      Scooter: They didn't mean you. You see, Crazy Harry's a...CRAZY HARRY?!
      KABOOM!
  • In "The Best Thanksgiving Ever" from Bear in the Big Blue House, following the pageant, Bear and the others smell something burning.
    Bear: Yeah, it is a burning smell.
    Ojo: Probably just the food.
    Treelo: Oh, yeah.
    Everyone: (big gasp) The food!

    Radio 

    Roleplay 
  • In Dawn of a New Age: Oldport Blues, Daigo creates a monster that he then plans to send after two kids who accidentally come across the scene. His girlfriend, Melissa, tries to explain to him how it's actually better if the kids get away, because then they'd go alert their older brother (which is what the two want, since said brother is one of the superpowered kids they're hunting down). However, during her explanation, she looks over and realises that the monster has broken free of its restraint and is hurtling towards the children.

    Theatre 
  • In Jasper In Deadland, after Jasper and Agnes reunite, reach Elysium and have their memories return, Agnes excitedly begins talking about how they can finally leave Deadland and go home to their families... before she realizes that returning to her life means returning to her abusive father, and she anxiously tries to convince Jasper to stay with her in Deadland.
  • In "The Room Where it Happens" from Hamilton, after Hamilton seemingly sacrifices New York's status as the US Capital, Burr realizes:
    Burr: Or did you know even then it doesn't matter where you put the U.S. capital?
  • Fagin's song in Oliver!, "Reviewing the Situation", is this trope in musical form. Having realized that the life of a criminal, with all its "trials and tribulations", might not be the best thing for him, and he muses over possible alternatives: getting married, living in society, getting an honest job. Each time, though, he comes to the realization halfway through that the "solution" he's describing would not be an improvement, leading him to conclude:
    Fagin: I think I'd better think it out again.
  • Deianira has shades of this in The Trachiniae as she talks to the chorus about the "strange sight" that is the bubbling, disintegrating piece of cloth she used to smear a love potion onto a shirt she just gave her husband.
  • In the Bill C. Davis play Mass Appeal, the young deacon, Mark, has been questioned about his sexuality after defending two seminarians suspected of being gay. He has decided to be honest and admit the fact that he has had same-sex relations as well as opposite-sex relations. Following the interview, he recounts the conversation to his mentor.
    Mark: He said, "Thank you for being so honest. Good day." Thank you for being so honest. Good d — (moment of realization) I'm in trouble, aren't I?
  • Jason Robert Brown's Songs for a New World features this trope in musical form courtesy of "Stars and the Moon." One of the show's four Singers (none of whom are named) reflects on her life and how, when she was young, she met two men who offered her immaterial treasures like love, truth, strength, summer rains, and the titular stars and the moon. But the singer wanted tangible wealth instead—"And I thought, you know...I'd rather have a yacht." She eventually met a young, rich man who promised her all of the luxuries she'd ever wanted and more—cars, houses, jewels, parties, furs—and happily married him, only to wake up one morning, look around, and realize that she'd given up on true happiness in the name of material possessions: "And I thought—My God...I'll never have the moon..."
  • "When Words Fail," a song from Shrek: The Musical, plays this trope for laughs. The titular ogre has realized his feelings for Fiona and tries to prepare a declaration of love. First, he imagines offering her a flower as a symbol of his dedication, only to completely lose the metaphor and comment "Oh, MAN, I'm in trouble." Shrek then tries again by comparing the imaginary Fiona to the moon, as it's "big and bright"—and promptly realizes that he just called her "big." This leads to Verbal Backspace as he tries to make up for it ("And by 'big' I don't mean 'chubby!' Obviously you're not fat!") and starts talking about his own weight problems and his genetic predisposition to—and there's the metaphor lost again. It becomes a sweet moment, though, when Shrek realizes that even if he does fail to express what he's feeling, Fiona will still understand the love behind his words.

    Web Animation 
  • Camp Camp:
    • "Romeo & Juliet 2: Love Resurrected" sees Camp Campbell put on a Fan Sequel to Romeo and Juliet with Neil as Romeo and Nikki as Juliet. However, Tabii decides to take Nikki out of commission so she can take her place as Juliet and kiss Neil, leading to this exchange...
      Tabii: [offscreen] Wow Nikki, you're, like, such a good actor.
      Nikki: Oh thank you ominous, offscreen voice-wait a minute. [gets ambushed by Tabii and her friends]
    • Throughout the episode "Into Town", Nikki just gets sicker and sicker until she eventually coughs up blood on Neil's shirt. Max doesn't know what's wrong with her, as they'd just been walking around town all day, and then it hits him: he dragged Nikki, a ravenous Nature Lover, out of nature.
    • In the episode "Anti-Social Network", Neil creates chatbots so the other campers will leave him alone. When he realizes that the chatbots are becoming smarter, he worries that a Turned On Their Masters scenario is occurring and gathers the chatbots with Max's help, then remember they forgot one:
      Neil: It's almost as if each device was trying to play to its owner's personality in order to get them to do something.
      Max: Well, I guess it's a good thing we got 'em all. Can you imagine if someone impressionable and naive enough to believe everything they heard from a chatbot had—
      Neil and Max: OH MY GOD, NIKKI!
      [Nikki's maniacal laughter is heard]
  • Dr. Havoc's Diary: In "Captain Dr. Havoc":
    Brock: [the submarine is leaking] Oh, shit, Havoc. I think your boat has a hole.
    Dr. Havoc: How is that possible? (Beat) Brock, how did you get on my submarine?
    Brock: Oh, I just-I took a welding gun, and I popped a hole in the side, and then I— Ah, shit. Yep. I figured it out. I did it.
  • In Clear Skies 2, we get this little exchange between two characters in an escape pod wondering why their captain is trying to ram a Titan.
    Burke: I think he's going for the hydrazine tanks behind the engine.
    Fodder: But that stuff's stable!
    Burke: Not when the warp core goes up near i— oh my word!
    Fodder: How big a bang's that gonna make?
    Burke: How fast does this pod go?
  • In one episode of Puffin Forest, a group of players are on the second floor of a church about to set off a bunch of bombs they set on the lower floor of the church to kill some enemies when one of the players realizes that something isn't right with the plan but isn't quite sure what it is. Another player starts explaining the plan again before realizing they are still in the building they are about to blow up and shouts "RUN!" They all jump out the windows to escape the building and break their legs just as the bombs go off.

    Webcomics 
  • Darths & Droids:
    • This happens to Annie when she finally tells Jim that she'd lost her job and in that same frame of time realizes it wasn't his fault entirely.
    • Much later on, during the attack on the second Peace Moon, the Rebels come to an important realization: The Peace Moon is fueled by the Lost Orb, a source of unlimited power. And since it's fueled by a source of unlimited power, they'd never have a reason not to have their shield up at all times.
      Admiral Ackbar: My god! It's not a trap! We're just prats!
  • In 8-Bit Theater, the Light Warriors are sailing on a ship they got from Bikke when a discussion on sea monsters attacking them ensues. Red Mage points out that such encounters are so common, most seafarers keep their ships ready... only to realize that maybe Bikke neglected to keep his ship ship-shape as he did with his own crew.
    Black Mage: Well, I'm sure we have nothing to worry about. Bikke seemed the responsible sort. I mean, he only fed his faithful, loyal, beloved pirate crew Cheetos for three months because it was cheaper than real food. And since that led directly to their deaths, he was then able to keep all the money Garland paid for his full crew to kill us. Money that would've undoubtedly gone toward the upkeep of this boat had he not insisted upon giving it to us. Why does this sound like something Thief would do?
  • El Goonish Shive:
    • A hilarious version with female Tedd and too reasonable Susan.
    • And another, slightly more dramatic one with Elliot: "I care deeply about her and I want her always to be a part of my life! I don't want to hurt her! She's like a sister to me!" ...When talking about his then-girlfriend, Sarah.
    • Later, Grace is sure that if Justin has a magic mark, he must know about it.
      Grace: How could he miss a small flame-shaped mark colored slightly different from the rest of his skin on a spot high up on his back where he'd need a mirror and probably have to make a deliberate effort to dammit!
  • It's more of an Explain Explain Oh My moment, but... Freefall has one somewhat like this. Florence is having a conversation with her friend Niomi about Uplifted Animals like Florence that segues into a discussion on terraforming.
    Niomi: As for Pfouts, that's a mirror world. Life there uses right-handed amino acids, Earth life uses left-handed. Our toughest viruses wouldn't survive there. To colonize Pfouts you'd have to redesign humans from the atomic level... Sheesh! It'd be faster and cheaper to engineer one of the local critters up to human... [beat] Isaac Asimov on a bicycle!
    Florence: Most things make sense when you look at them right. It's just sometimes you have to look really, really cock-eyed.
  • In Gene Catlow, Gene Catlow and CatsWhisker are discussing the First Animen, who are hostile to them. CW wonders how beings so ancient who have been in psychic contact with so many minds remained sane— and Gene realizes that they didn't.
  • Girl Genius:
  • In A Modest Destiny the Big Bad, after being pestered by the Hive that he needs to make a blood sacrifice now or the ritual will fail, he stabs one of them to death. When the ritual is still failing, the other members explain that as an undead he was barely a quarter alive.
    The Black Knight: So what you are saying is that I need to kill three more just like him, right?
    Hive #2: Correct.
    Hive #3: ...Um...
    Hive #4: ...Nuts.
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • In "They've Had Time to Train, Too", Haley and the Azurite Resistance are running a stealth raid on a granary in Hobgoblin-occupied Azure City. Haley's already dispatched most of the hobgoblin guards and all they need to do to take the granary undetected is to finish off the wizard leading them, when the wizard fires off...
      Haley: "Dancing Lights"? That's like a 0th-level spell! Geez, what kind of low-level, lame-ass spellcaster are you? You've got one chance before I perforate you, and you choose... Dancing... Lights...
      [wizard points upward; Haley looks up at the bright red signal alerting hobgoblin forces all over the city of their position]
    • In "The Comics Must Flow", Belkar is chugging spice in the middle of the desert. Seeing his eyes change color, Haley insists he read the warning label to avoid getting sick.
      Belkar: No, it doesn't say anything about eye color change. Just a disclaimer that the distributor is not liable for any gruesome violent deaths resulting from consuming this product in an open desert. So, see? It's perfectly safe for— ...Ah, crap.
      [cue giant Sand Worm bursting from sand]
    • In "Collect Call", when Roy and Belkar get arrested for not having proper entry papers, Durkon contacts them with Sending. After three sending discussions, Roy tells Durkon to find the others, saying that he hopes Durkon has enough sending spells. Durkon Sends again, telling Roy not to worry as he had prepared four sending spells... before he realizes that he just used them all up.
      Belkar: [to Roy] I don't know what just happened, but I feel a sudden urge to help you come up with 25 synonyms for "buffoon".
    • In "Rising Suspicion", when the Order is walking around a bunch of fresh corpses that have been killed by vampires, Belkar comments that he hopes they don't turn into more vampires, but Roy tells him that it won't be a problem as a person doesn't become a vampire until three days after they died and he had broken the staff that had the spell to speed up the process. It's then that Haley realizes that Vampire Durkon's time spent researching the protection from daylight spell wouldn't make sense if he was going to be invading a subterranean city and that he had actually been learning the spell to speed up a vampire's rise.
      Haley: I'm just saying, if I knew my Evil Doom Plan might hinge on me invading a subterranean country, I might not worry too much... about the sun.
  • Pixie and Brutus: In one strip, Pixie tells Brutus that he found a movie on television about a character she thinks is named "Freddy Cougar". Half-asleep, Brutus reflexively corrects it to "Freddy Krueger". In the next panel, Brutus snaps wide awake as it sinks in that Pixie's innocence is about to be ruined by the horror film and he immediately headbutts the television.
  • In this Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal comic, a woman claims she has invented a time machine and went back twenty minutes, where she saw a a huge flash of energy and then an empty void. She concludes that reality came into existence twenty minutes ago. Someone takes a look at the footage and tells her that she's wrong. The machine was set to look forwards in time instead of backwards.
  • Schlock Mercenary:
    • Kevyn learns that there is a right time and a wrong time to invoke this on someone here. The time to explain by feeding someone clues and letting them work out the enemy's plan themselves is not when you are in the enemy's territory and they know you're there.
    • During the Under New Management arc, Kevyn and Tagon discuss their current mission; being blackmailed by Xinchub into hunting down Kevyn's sister Breya. If they don't, Xinchub will have the Toughs arrested for a number of crimes. When Kevyn remains unhappy, Tagon asks who Xinchub will send after Breya once the Toughs are imprisoned. Kevyn responds, "I don't know... Some unimaginative, trigger-happy rear admiral, I guess." (Beat) "Oh, crap. I can't believe I just now figured that out."
  • In this Something*Positive strip, Peejee puts in a bid on a nice looking house and is bragging to Davan that she'll likely get it for cheap because 1) the owners had severely reduced their asking price over the last year and 2) five previous bidders had backed out at the last second... then realizes those are actually some pretty serious red flags that she'd glossed over.
  • xkcd: "How did the pole vaulters get up to our balcony?"
  • Questionable Content:
    • In "Delayed Entendre Recognition", Faye is justifying her claim that she's descended from Civil War pirates by saying her grandmother said their ancestors were "boarded by Yankee seamen all the time". As she says it, she realises that that's not what she meant.
    • Two strips later, she tells Marten about telling Angus about her father's suicide. When Marten is surprised that she just told him, she replies "Well, yeah. I mean, I couldn't be all cryptic about it, that would be a really shitty ... thing ... to do ... to ... someone ..."
    • In BRTOM, when Beeptrice questions whether Roko's attempts to find leverage against someone she's got a meeting with are appropriate for an AI rights volunteer:
      Roko: Oh, what, like being an agent of the state conditioned me to treat any potential conflict as a cops versus robbers situation instead of two adults trying to come to an agreement, and I'm deflecting my anxiety over this meeting by regressing to that mindset?
      [Beat]
      Roko: Well, shit. I thought I was being sarcastic.
      Beeps: You get the Big Realizer of the Month award! I'll fetch your commemorative plaque.
    • In "Self-Revelation", on Dora's first date with Jim, she tells him why she broke up with Marten, and how the relationship seemed to bring out her anxieties, concluding "I probably shouldn't be dating anybody right now. [Beat] Shit."
  • Terror Island: In this strip, several characters are attempting to banish a demon. They gather everything they need except toothpaste when the demon traps them in a force field, leading to this.
    Liln: Okay, this isn't too bad. We just need to call Sid and Stephen, and have them get the toothpaste... at the grocery store.note 
    First Folio: We're doomed!
  • In Leftover Soup, Cheryl and Carol are discussing the ethics of being a parent while also being in a polyamorous relationship, when...
    Cheryl: You don't think finding out about Mommy and Daddy's other lovers is gonna mess a kid up?
    Carol: Well, how do you feel about Miguel?
    Cheryl: Uncle Meegs? That's different. He's just Mom and Dad's friend, nothing weird or polyamorous about that. He just moved in with us for a while to help out with child care after Carl was born. (beat) ...our little brother Carl, who has black hair and brown eyes and evidently my entire life is an elaborate web of deception.
    Carol: (nervously) Omission! An elaborate web of omission!
  • Paranatural: Chapter 5 sees a game of dodgeball—sorry, "hitball"—go awry when Jeff gets (sort of) possessed by a spirit named Hijack. Eventually the only people still on the field are Max, Johnny, Hijack!Jeff, and an unnamed student who taped several balls to her body to shield herself. Max then promptly...gets the unnamed student out. Hijack thinks about why he did that at first, but then it dawns on him.
    Hijack!Jeff: Why'd he hit her? That's just...every last ball ON MY SIDE!
  • #8 of Hobbits And Hole Dwellers has a rather twitchy Ted excuse himself for five minutes. When he comes back, he asks Bailey to tell him about her character. Bailey responds by asking which character of hers he means.
    Ted: What do you mean, which one? You only had that wizard five minutes ago- wait.
  • Played for laughs in this Penny Arcade strip:
    Tyhco: You must be cranked up for this Sea of Thieves RPG, right?
    Gabe: Must I?
    Tycho: I mean, you've spent months essentially porting the Sea of Thieves experience to D&D! You meticulously crafted rules for sailing, ship combat, modelling the wind, custom minigames to simulate fishing, diving... treasure hunting... Oh.

    Web Original 
  • The Tabletop episode on Chez Geek has this happen to Storm when he plays the card Guy on the Couch. Wil asks him to explain the card, which leads to thisnote :
    Storm: Guy on the Couch gives you Slack +1. You can play him at any time without rolling, but starting on the next player's turn, he'll go away if... oh, I'm an idiot.

    Web Videos 
  • Alison does this in the season finale of Brains as she realizes the identity of the murderer: Professor Sherman.
  • In cs188's Youtube Poop, "Tom's Diner but it's an absolute trainwreck", Suzanne Veganne, after struggling to finally get some coffee at the diner on the corner, decides to read the newspaper. Lucky thing she did...
    "I open up the paper, there's a story of a woman who had died while she was drinking the coffee at the diner on the corner—" [Beat] "I threw the coffee out the window!"
  • This happens to The Nostalgia Critic at the end of his review of A Simple Wish, where he rants about Mara Wilson's bad movies only to realize, as he describes what she looks like now, that she's currently watching him. She then proceeds to respond to his dissing of her movies from when she was a little girl by showing clips from some of the Critic's home movies from his own childhood.
    Critic: But I'm sorry, I'm just not a fan of her movies! I mean, it's like everything Mara Wilson touched back then just turned to crap. I mean, look at her. [pulls up video of a modern-day Mara, looking visibly displeased] With her couch, her modern-day haircut, her twenty-five-ish-year-old body, her vengeful eyes that seem to be looking directly at me right noweeesh!
    Mara: Hello, Critic.
    NC: Wait. Like inanimate toys, or living toys, like the ones we've been seeing?
    (Cut back to the first scene with the Nutcracker)
    Nutcracker: All dolls are alive.
    NC: Okay, I guess that's supposed to mean they're all alive... [freezes in place, realizing what this means] You're not.
    (We're again shown the scene of the Rat King speaking to the Nutcracker, Tinker and Sticks)
    Rat King: You ever wonder what happens to a doll's soul when it burns?
    NC: (shakes head) You're seriously not. (The people of the kingdom, paired as parent and child, are brought to the Rat King's palace/smoke factory to the big pile of inanimate toys before them. The rat soldiers take the toys away from the children to toss them to the pile) Oh, yeah. You thought this was just gonna be simple bad guy Nazi imagery like in Indiana Jones or old Looney Tunes cartoons? But no. People being rounded up, children crying, and the sky filled with smoke from factories burning piles of what they just made clear are living individuals. All of this is actually happening.
  • The Rap Critic's list of the top nine worst lyrics of 2016 has him wrapping up by putting the entirety of B.o.B.'s "Flatline" at #1. His discussion of the song's failings culminates in a massive "The Reason You Suck" Speech at conspiracy theorists, accusing them of poisoning the discourse such that actual problems with government and corporate corruption and malfeasance can't be discussed rationally without being lumped in with raving lunatics. He then realizes that the proliferation of phony conspiracy theories to misdirect truth-seekers would be just what the people in power would want. This causes him to (sarcastically) go into raving Conspiracy Theorist mode himself.
    Rap Critic: In fact, if I didn't know any better, I'd think that... oh my God. These conspiracy nuts are a plant by evil corporations! They're there to make any actual criticism of the effects of their tyranny look crazy! Oh my God, it's the perfect plan! To keep your mind occupied by fantasy that tells you that you're powerless, and misdirect people out there who want to be socially aware with gobbledygook about the Earth being flat! Because, y'know, that's what's ruining society! Listen to me, people! All you flat-earthers and 9/11 truthers out there, stop focusing your energy on this bulls**t! Remove the wool from over your eyes and realize that you should be using your energy to protest actual corrupt stuff like, like the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, or pushing for better police training! Stop talking about the weather machines or pizza parties or whatever bulls**t you're actually thinking about! That's just what the Illumi-Nazis or the Build-a-Bear Corporation want you to think! Open your eyes, sheeple!!! I'm the Rap Critic, and... be aware, my friends. [takes off cap to reveal a Tinfoil Hat] Be very aware.
  • During their video on SCP – Containment Breach, IGP and IcyCaress were camping outside the door to a small, three-door connector, waiting for "Peanuts" (the infamous SCP-173) on the other side to leave, reassuring each other that 173 cannot open doors. A few moments later, IGP goes through the door and the following exchange occurs:
    Icy: Are you sure you're alright?
    IGP: Yeah, I don't have the blink meter, that means he's gone. He's gone!
    Icy: Great! That means... wait, that means he can open doors.
    IGP: He's... Oh god, he can.
  • StacheBros: In "The Day Super Mario Died", Boo believes that Mario is dead after hearing such news from Luigi, but she tries to show him the bright side of being dead by helping him pull pranks on the Mushroom Kingdom. After their pranking, though, Mario is still bummed about believing he's dead:
    Boo: Aw, c'mon, we went through this! Being dead's great! So what if a condor bit your head off?
    Mario: Yeah, I know, it's bad- [record needle scratch] What? Condor?
    Boo: Yeah, and that forest shark ate the rest of you!
    Mario: What? No, I got pushed off a cliff by Luigi.
    Boo: What, that stupid hill? You couldn't have... oh, no.
    Mario: What?
    Boo: Luigi made it all up. Which means... you're alive! And that means...
    Mario: All those pranks were...
    Both: Oh, no!
  • This happens twice to Todd in the Shadows during his review of One Direction's "Best Song Ever", as his criticisms fall flat and he starts to realize that he actually likes the song.
  • Unraveled:
    • Brian spends more than ten minutes discussing the vital traits that his new music genre will require to thrive in the wastelands of the Fallout series, he suddenly realises that he's spent all that time reinventing Ska.
    • At the end of his video on Bowser's military organisation, Brian fills in some of the odds-and-ends characters:
    "[These characters] didn't really fit in the military structure, they don't act like military. The Koopa Troopas from Super Mario 64, they don't even antagonise you, they go about their business unless you go out of your way to attack them. So, again, they don't even feel like military. They act more like civilians, to be honest."
    (long pause)
    "Oh my God, they're civilians."
    • Throughout his video on when Mario can retire, all of Brian's projections have come to the conclusion that Mario can't retire until he's almost 90. At the end of the video, Brian tries one last time, using his own financial information, only to get the same result. Brian protests this conclusion, pointing out that if Mario can never retire, then he can never retire, at which point what he just said hits him, and the video ends with Brian out drinking.
  • At the end of the Big Picture episode "Familiar Things", about how Stranger Things uses nostalgia for The '80s as one of its main hooks, Bob notes how many of the Amblin Entertainment works that the show is hearkening back to were themselves nostalgic for The '40s and The '50s, when their own creators grew up, and how that nostalgia has come full circle. He then starts thinking of how it might come full circle again once the young fans of Stranger Things themselves become adults.
    "I can't help but wonder, knowing that Stranger Things does indeed have a young fanbase that doesn't actually have firsthand memories of its various references, what it'll look like when the series inspires its own nostalgia in a generation's time. Nostalgia for the 2010s' nostalgia of the '80s, which was nostalgia for the '40s and '50s? Well, at least my job's not going anywhere... oh dear God."
  • Decker Shado ended up doing this when commenting on the title of the version of Gamera vs. Gyaos he's reviewing with That Long-Haired Creepy Guy. As when commenting on it, he criticizes the latter titular monster's name being spelled as "Gaes" and is immediately horrified. Creepy, an LGBT man, quickly gives out a Death Glare.
  • At the end of Atop the Fourth Wall's review of Sensational Spider-Man #0, Linkara mentions that some viewers believed that he was almost done with The Clone Saga before mentioning he's been skipping around stories before he lifted up the massive seven volume omnibus collection covering it and tells them that that doesn't even include the original saga, the Ultimate Clone Saga, the mini-series revision and others. This means he'd never run out of the Clone Saga. A split second later, his face drops and he shouts "DAMMIT!"
  • During Tear Of Grace's playthough of Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, after Brett's newest Captain defeats an enemy one in combat, several other enemy Captains flee the scene. Brett reads off the name of one of said Captains and stops mid-sentence when he realizes that his Implacable Man Nemesis Pigug the Shadow has come Back from the Dead yet again.
    Brett: Pigug the Shadow escape- [Beat as Brett remembers who that is] Pigug... Shadow... Escaped...
  • A subdued version is used in Scott The Woz when the group's attempt at warning people of the blue border in "Borderline Forever" fails miserably and they realize it may have had the exact opposite effect they were hoping for:
    Terry: At least we did spread the word on multiple issues, now people know about the blue border and think we're f*cks.
    Jeb: I mean, we only started to see the border after you [Scott] brought it up to us.
    The group: ...Huh.

    Real Life 
  • Rubber Duck Debugging is a case of trying to forcefully invoke this trope in real life with a Companion Cube.
  • Socratic dialogues consist of constantly asking further explanation from another person who proposes a certain theory, until said person reaches a point where their argument falls apart, thus highlighting the hidden weaknesses in their theory. Socrates himself concluded that no one really knows anything, since the technique always tripped them up eventually. Indeed, even the most comprehensively thought-out argument or idea will eventually reach a point that the speaker simply cannot explain it any further.
  • This happened to a Washington, D.C.-area meteorologist in 2022. As Doug Kammerer read the weather report for NBC 4 Washington's newscast and announced a tornado warning in Bethesda, Maryland, he realized that his house was right in the middle of the area where the storm was projected to go through, and called his family live on-air to warn them.

Oh, that Self-Destruct Mechanism? Don't worry, it only activates if you read the text at the bottom of the... ah, hell.
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"How's Maria?"

What the hell possessed you to ask a question like that Mudkip_Captain?

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5 (20 votes)

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