Sometimes a character is so shocked or surprised by an absurdity, non sequitur, or incredibly stupid remark from another character that the listener actually faints. The remark is so startling that it, quite literally, floors them.
There are usually two variations. One, nicknamed the "flip-take" is very popular in comic strips and animated cartoons. Early American comic strips often used it in the final panel of a gag. Character A says the stupid/shocking line, causing character B to faint by falling over backwards with their legs up in the air. Usually done by only showing the feet up in the air, accompanied by a large thud sound.
The other, also called an "anime-fall", has the fainting character fall over forwards in the final panel of a gag onto his face, his limbs in a twisted mass above him. A device usually limited to humorous anime, though doesn't actually originate from there. In both instances, it includes, and is confused with, Wild Takes.
Frequently, this action is depicted using a single, pronounced frame transition.
Usually, no one is harmed by taking a flying dive face-first into the ground (unless the animator thinks having them pop up with a bruised face would be funny). A less expressive equivalent would be Facepalm; a more expressive one would be a Head Desk.
Only a handful of comedians can successfully pull off a full-fledged Face Fault in live-action performance; notable examples include Jim Carrey, Steve Martin, Dick Van Dyke, and Chevy Chase. Live-action performers are more likely to do The Pratfall instead, which is a similar comedic trick but leaves the character on his rump. The Japanese, however, have mastered the live-action Face Fault as a art form, though it also helps that in most live-action performances the actors don't have to completely fall; most Face Faults in this medium have the cast standing on at least one foot while flailing their bodies in either direction.
Closely related to People Fall Off Chairs. Compare Fainting and Loudspeaker Truck, when a passing vehicle makes a very loud noise to indicate awkwardness. Not to be confused with Face Plant, which is when someone hits the ground face-first after tripping or falling. Sub-trope of The Take.
- In Blue Exorcist, someone's mobile phone goes off during the sports lesson. Bon does a Face Fault when the teacher of all people answers his phone.
- After Story:
Akio: Sanae has huge boobs, you know?
[Tomoya face faults in front of Nagisa]
Nagisa: [drunk] Tomoya-kun, why are you panicking like that?
- Also one great scene in 23rd (extra) episode when Tomoya is having an absurd conversation with Nagisa:
Nagisa: [offering him her bread] Would you like a bite?
Tomoya: Not really.
Nagisa: That's a problem.
Tomoya: You need me to say, "Yes, I want a bite."?
Nagisa: You want a bite?
Tomoya: [faking] Yeah, I'd really like a bite of it!
Nagisa: [cheerfully] You do? [looks away] But I won't let you.
[Tomoya face faults off the bench]
- Fuko goes on the loudspeaker system. "Those are starfish." Whole school face faults.
- Kyou at one point face faults so hard she knocks a door down in the process.
- After Story:
- Crayon Shin-chan, usually thanks to something stupid Shin has said or done:
Shin: You guys fall down a lot when I talk.
- Delicious Party♡Pretty Cure: In Episode 15, Takumi face faults to the floor upon overhearing and mistaking that Yui was talking about him when she was actually referring to Kokone's family driver.
- In episode 18 of the D.Gray-Man anime, the entire science team of the Black order and Lavi does a collective face fault when Allen pulls the giant octopus off his head, to show a smaller one underneath.
- Doraemon has multiple gags like these in the manga tales. Usually it's caused by Nobita being The Ditz.
- Doraemon: The Record of Nobita : Spaceblazer has Ropporu trying to explain the dimension rift concept to Nobita and how hyperspace works in general, by folding a piece of A4. Nobita instead asks if the galaxy were made of paper, wouldn't it be flimsy... cue Ropporu face-faulting.
- The remake of Doraemon: Nobita and the Haunts of Evil has the gang doing this when Gian tries giving a Rousing Speech to the gang on "Be proud adventurers like a true man..." only for Shizuka to answer she's a girl. The boys (and Peko, the dog) quickly fall over.
- Doraemon: Nobita's Great Battle of the Mermaid King has Doraemon bringing out a bunch of surfboards for battling the main villain, Bulkin. When Nobita assumes it's superpowered gadget-boards, Doraemon only replies they're ordinary surfboards, causing the gang to flip.
- Doraemon: Nobita and the Island of Miracles ~Animal Adventure~ has Nobisuke (Nobita's dad) telling Nobita and Doraemon his childhood encounter with the mystical golden beetle. As the latter two starts showing interest, Nobisuke later admits he kind of just dreamt it up. Doraemon and Nobita both react with a seated face-fault.
- Early in Doraemon: Nobita and The Space Heroes (a Superhero Episode) the gang starts using their superpowers given by Doraemon's gadgets for the first time. Gian has Super-Strength, Suneo's a Gadgeteer Genius who can conjure any weapons at will, Shizuka can fire powerful jets of water from her hands and Nobita... can shoot two strings. Mid-air face fault ensues.
- Dragon Ball sometimes had scenes such as this.
Roshi: (Sheepish) Whoopsy! Don't know my own strength! (Heroes face fault)
- After Master Roshi uses the Kamehameha to put out Fry-Pan Mountain's massive fire, Ox-King awkwardly points out that Roshi also destroyed the entire mountain as well. (Dragon Ball, episode 8)
- The very first audience-wide face fault occurs in the first tournament arc (Dragon Ball episode 21, about halfway through). Just before the main matches begin, the master monk of the temple hosting the tournament (who is a dog) steps up for a few choice words. He takes the mic...
Announcer: Isn't that profound?
- Used again during Goku's fight with Nam. Goku spins himself so fast that he becomes a miniature tornado and manages to force Nam to the edge of the ring... before getting dizzy and collapsing right in front of him. In response, Nam nearly face faults out of the ring, but he manages to save himself.
- At the end of the Tournament saga in Dragon Ball (episode 28), the gang are all watching in astonishment as Goku gulps down plate after plate of food, with the plates eventually piling up. Eventually, Goku stops after eating 57 full course meals while everyone looks on in disbelief. Afterwards, he asks the waiter "Can I have another bowl please?" Cue everyone face faulting. Roshi says Goku has probably had enough to which Goku casually replies "Yeah. You're right. I probably should save some room for dessert!" Cue another face fault by everyone.
- Chi Chi entered a tournament in a Dragon Ball arc. She met Goku there, and was pissed at him because he'd forgotten that he'd promised years prior that she'd be his bride. When she reveals this, Goku asks Krillin what a bride is. He, the nearby Yamcha, and Chi Chi all Face Fault.
- One of the best face faults in DBZ history is when Trunks tells Goku his parentage... Vegeta is his father, and his mother... Bulma. Goku's reaction was not only faulting — but flat out laughing in sheer disbelief! Meanwhile, far away from this private talk, Piccolo with his acute hearing picks up on the entire conversation, and nearly face faults himself (episode 122).
Vegeta: "That guy just pointed his finger and Kakarot fell down!"
- It's also one of the rare examples of this trope being lampshaded:
- There were two notable ones during the Afterlife Tournament filler arc. First, a rather easy foe that Goku is fighting suddenly wraps himself in a cocoon, his trainer bragging that he'll eventually come out stronger than before. Unfortunately, he also says the metamorphosis will complete in 1200 years, causing Goku and the referees to face fault (Dragon Ball Z episode 196). Afterwards, Goku wins by default; then, two minor characters, Torbie and Tapikar face off. The latter shows off his blinding speed just before the match, intimidating the former; when the fight begins, Tapikar charges at Torbie, but stops, exhausted, and forfeits. Aside from Tapikar, the only ones who remain standing are West Kai, who states that the ring is biased against short people, and North Kai, who accuses him of being a sore loser. Everyone else in the arena face faults. Including the audience. Who face faults in waves. (Dragon Ball Z episode 197)
- Another one was during the Majin Buu saga (episode 251) when Goten and Trunks first tried to fuse seriously in front of everyone. The first attempt resulted in a very chubby Gotenks. As Gotenks tries to jog in his newly fused body he stops moving for a second... then starts heaving in exhaustion, giving up. Everyone face faults.
- Dr. STONE: Senku causes the entire village to face fault when he ultimately realizes they're going to create another phone after months of collecting materials.
- There are a lot more of these in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood than in the 2003 anime version. Fitting, as it follows the manga's art (and story) much more closely. There are a lot of face faults in the manga. The Australian official release even references it by name.
Ed: Is it some weird Xingese culture to face fault at will?!
- Used often in Full Metal Panic!, usually as a result of Sōsuke's actions. Two notable ones:
- At one point, the invisible mech facefaults.
- When Kaname spots Sōsuke following her on the train, his response is a very fake "Funny meeting you here," which causes Kaname to face fault. The noteworthy part is that the camera is focused entirely on Sōsuke. The audience has to infer Kaname's face-fault by the sound effect, and Sōsuke suddenly lowering his gaze.
- Happens to Mikan in Gakuen Alice with an almost sadistic frequency.
- In episode five of Harukanaru Toki no Naka de Tenma has this reaction when Akane expresses concern over the possibility of Yorihisa commiting seppuku after she fell into a river because of him; although Tenma then comments that, this being Yorihisa, such outcome is possible.
- Hidamari Sketch:
- When the tenants of the apartments are in Miyako's room, trying to come up with reasons why the rent on it is so much cheaper than theirs, Hiro brings up some old nicknames for the apartments: "Chidamari" (bloody) and "Odamari" (be quiet). This latter name is followed by an overhead view of Sae's, Miyako's, and Yuno's legs as they've suddenly lain down in reaction to it.
- Yoshinoya-sensei also elicits one from those involved in the Cinderella play. After they'd finished, she burst through the curtains, crying. You might think, as they probably did, that she'd been overcome by the emotion of the moment, but no, she started complaining that the principal wouldn't let her hold a concert for the festival.
- The first season of Inazuma Eleven has several scenes where one or more characters instantly collapse when they hear something they consider absurd. Though unusually for an anime, they usually fall backwards (the flip-take) rather than on their face (the anime fall). An example is in episode 5, where everybody in the room except Gouenji and Kazemaru has this reaction after Endou reads his grandfather's explanation of the Inazuma Drop, which is total non-sence.
- Infinite Stratos does this when Ichika is about to do something, only for him to declare that, that's it. Cue everyone in the class face-faulting.
- Inuyasha: Kagome's command of "Osuwari!" ("Sit, boy!") causes Inuyasha to do an automatic Face Fault, though that's more of a mystical means of keeping Inuyasha under control than a reaction to stupidity. Although most of the time, it is because InuYasha has done something extraordinarily stupid. Also, on occasion she has used this command in rapid-fire succession, even going so far in the first movie as to literally drive him into the ground.
- In JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders, after Jotaro defeats D'Arby at his own poker game, Avdol checks Jotaro's hand, only to find that rather than having a hand that could beat D'Arby's four of a kind with kings, Jotaro had one of the worst hands possible. Avdol and the kid dealer nearly face fault since Jotaro had been bluffing D'Arby for the entirety of the match.
- Kaiju Girl Caramelise has an example when Rairi is giving her backstory:
in the past
Yuu Okada: I feel like I have the most fun when I'm with you, Rairi.
Rairi: Huh...? I-if you tell me stuff like that...I'll fall for you, y'know!?
Okada: That's fine. Go ahead.
in the present
Rairi: Well...he already had a girlfriend.
Kuroe face faults out of her chair
- Yuuta Togashi pulled an epic one in the first episode of Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! that trashes the entire room.
- In Lupin III Legend Of The Gold Of Babylon, upon seeing the Tower of Babel floating in the sky, The Statue of Liberty is so dumbfounded by the sight she just faults while dropping her torch.
- Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha has one of these in the first episode when Nanoha is trying to persuade her family to let her take care of a "ferret" — cough, cough — that she found injured in the woods. Her father asks what a ferret is, and Nanoha face faults, though at a much lesser extreme than expected from this.
- My Hero Academia: In the Paranormal Liberation War arc, Doctor Garaki experiences many throughout the raid, as his plans are systematically dismantled by the Heroes.
- Naruto: In one filler episode, after spending the whole day trying to get Kakashi to get his mask, he decides to show the trio what's underneath... which is another mask, as Naruto, Sakura, and Sasuke fault to the ground.
Naruto: ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! WHAT THE HECK KIND OF AN ENDING IS THAT?!
- Ken Akamatsu often uses overly exaggerated face faults that send characters flying around as if standing next to an explosion of some sort.
- One Piece:
- In the "Koby and Helmeppo's Chronicles of Toil" mini-series, Vice-Admiral Garp gets this reaction from his sailors when he admits that the reason "Axe-hand" Morgan was able to slash him and escape was because he fell asleep during the prison transfer.
- A moment of this in a filler arc (the Foxy's Return arc) where Luffy's failure to see through a Paper-Thin Disguise floors everyone in the room. Including the one who was trying to fool him with it.
- In Episode 452, Luffy is on a hijacked Marine ship sailing to Marine Headquarters to rescue Ace from execution, and is talking to a member of the Marines. He assures them that he's going to rescue Ace, and they should "wash your potatoes and wait." Most of those on the ship fall down as a result (for those unaware, the phrase "wash your neck and wait" was traditionally spoken to prisoners before their executions).
- In the Sabaody Archipelago arc, after Caimie has been kidnapped, Sanji tells Chopper and Brook to wait for Usopp to come and pick them up. By the time Usopp arrives, he sees Chopper and Brook relaxing as if they were on the beach (On the grounds that worrying won't make time go any faster, so they might as well relax). Cue Usopp face-faulting.
- In Chapter 823, Igaram is, as usual, overly worried as Vivi is on top of a Marine ship, enjoying the breeze. He nearly craps himself with fear when she jumps off the crow's nest, but face-faults when she nails the landing perfectly.
- Occurs in the 12th episode of Ookami Kakushi when one girl's grandfather who just put on quite a badass display, asks someone to call an ambulance because he strained his hip.
- Pokémon: The Series absolutely loves this trope.
Sabrina's father: JUST HOW DENSE CAN A PERSON BE?!
- In early Kanto episodes. When Ash is your standard Idiot Hero when it comes to love, it's either time for a facepalm or one of these.
- In an early episode "Haunter vs. Kadabra", Sabrina's father does a Face Fault when Ash concludes aloud that the reason the former knows Sabrina so well is because he's been her photographer all her life.
- One episode (The Mandarin Island Miss Match, episode 99) has the Team Rocket trio face fault out of their balloon while it was in the air after they suggested Lorelei to record her lectures on tape and sell them and she told them the price ($18.95, if you're interested). To be fair, Ash, Misty, and Tracey face faulted immediately beforehand.
- While Ash is the Idiot Hero, people do this at if it comes to love, he tends to do them himself whenever he gets ignored for something else, especially whenever Professor Oak ignores him in favor of a Pokémon.
- Brock does this in the premiere of The Johto Journeys when Ash asks him if he's got any cash in case Johto League registration costs a fee.
- Speaking of Brock, his near-constant womanizing has resulted in his allies doing this on more than one occasion.
- The Pokémon the Series: Diamond and Pearl episode "Ancient Family Matters!" makes a Running Gag out of characters face-faulting when Byron gets distracted by Team Rocket's exquisite hole-digging skills.
- In episode 77 of Pokémon the Series: XY (A Relay in the Sky!), a man named Ornithol offers his expertise on the Pokémon Sky Relay to help Ash when the latter decides to take part. When asked about his previous experience with the event, it turns out Ornithol never participated because he'd never caught three flying Pokémon. Everyone else (save the man's Noctowl) face faults upon hearing that.
- Ranma ˝
- Face faults are common sight gags in both the manga and the anime. Rumiko Takahashi does it with the characters' hands usually extended, middle and ring (and index?) fingers folded while the pinkie/index and thumb stick out. The hand-sign is basically the familiar "horns", and is used in Japan to deflect evil eye.
- The second season of the anime opens every episode with a brief "blurb" describing the premise, that ends with the entire Tendō family face-faulting upon witnessing Ranma's transformation.
- In Sakigake!! Otokojuku, Tazawa attempts to intimidate a thug by speaking entirely in Gratuitous English, causing the whole gang to face fault.
- Sailor Moon:
- Occasionally seen in the anime; a particular example that comes to mind is the Sailor Moon S episode with Usagi's birthday, where the girls do this twice in the same scene: first when Usagi admits that she never told Mamoru about her birthday, and then when it turns out she doesn't know when his is either.
- On one occasion the girls were admiring a modern art statue with the Starlights and when Yaten announces its enormous price, Rei faceplants straight onto it, almost knocking it over.
- In the episode "Paired With a Monster: Mako, the Ice Skating Queen". A recurring gag is that Sailor Jupiter is always lovesick and always falling for guys who remind her of "the guy who broke [her] heart." At the end of the episode, it's been about five minutes since the end of her most recent relationship. Then she turns red ogling a guy who's "nose is just like the guy who broke [her] heart". All four of the others hit the dirt.
- In Shaman King (2001), after driving to Mesa Verdede in search of the Patch Tribe, only to find that it's full of tourists, Yoh and company promptly Face Fault an entire van.
- Rurouni Kenshin: Kenshin politely refuses a lady's offer to stay at her inn. In the manga she says he must be flat broke, while in the anime she calls him a cheapskate, and in both cases he faceplants right away. Then in the anime version another lady appears, and the first tells her to forget about him since he's a cheapskate before he can even stand up, so this time he flip-takes to end on his back!
- Haruka of Sakura Trick often does this when experiencing a fit of Yuri Fan and/or Yuu Fan madness.
- School Rumble: Everybody, all the damn time.
- Comes up now and then in SD Gundam Force. In the first Clip Show, Shute and Zero pull this when Bakunetsumaru realizes that the "reporters" they've been talking to are Zako Soldiers in a Paper-Thin Disguise...after the Zakos reveal themselves. Then at the very end, Zapper Zaku reveals that his singing janitor routine was just an act, and announces that he's ready to do bad again. Cut to him being surrounded by a small army with their blades pointing at him. Zapper panics and does his routine- pan over to his allies, who have face-faulted.
- Sgt. Frog is a living magnet of these. Of special note: the Third Movie, which features the new Dark Keroro, whose design practically screams Evil Twin. And what's Keroro's first assumption? It's his long-lost twin brother. His remaining platoonmates nearly flip. Cue the soap-opera parody.
- The title sequence for season 6 shows Keroro getting this reaction from an entire Keronian battalion.
- Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie has this when the old owl is explaining that he physically traveled all the way to Sonic's residence to tell him something that could have been much more easily communicated by phone.
- In Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, episode 10, Kittan does this when Nia, whom he is interrogating under the impression that due to being Lordgenome's daughter she is an enemy, asks what "enemy" means.
- In Ultimate Teacher Ganbachi and Karima do this when they're charging against each other and get interrupted by Hinako.
- During moments when he seems Too Dumb to Live, Judai of Yu-Gi-Oh! GX frequently elicits this response from his friends, teachers, strangers, and even inanimate objects like a road sign (see episode 66 for the last one).
- YuYu Hakusho:
- In the very first episode, upon learning from Botan that his throwing himself into the path of a moving car to save a kid was a Senseless Sacrifice, making his death, as she put it, "a complete and utter waste", Yusuke face faulted so hard that he fell out of the sky.
- In the fourth episode Kuwabara and his gang are pressured to pass their next test and if they don't they will all get kicked out of school. The group talks and explains they need to study to get their grades up. When they ask Kuwabara what he got on his last test he sheepishly responds a Seven. Cue Face Fault.
- The Dark Tournament arc features this several times (most memorably when a contestant abruptly leaves the ring in the middle of his power-up to go vomit), but it is usually reserved for the comic relief characters of Koenma and Jorge. The dub hangs a lampshade on this and deconstructs it when Koenma yells at Jorge to get up because "surprise time's over" and Jorge replies that his horn got stuck in the floor.
- Watanuki Kimihiro of ×××HOLiC does this quite often.
- Played with in an episode of Zoids: New Century. At the very beginning of a Humongous Mecha tournament, the judges refer to the Tigers team as the Fuzzy Pandas team (a Running Gag first started by the main character), which causes their zoids to face fault. This freezes their combat system, and thus disqualifies them from the tournament.
- Elizabeth from The Seven Deadly Sins does this twice when Meliodas lied about why he is wanted by the kingdom.
- In Shomin Sample episode 3, when stoic super-genius Hakua expresses an interest in Kimito, the first time she'd shown a personal interest in anyone, her personal maid face-faults hard enough to shatter the tiles on the floor.
- Happens in several episodes of the Tamagotchi animated series. For example, in GO-GO Tamagotchi! episode 3b, Himespetchi does one when she thinks Mametchi has just noticed her, only for her to realize he was looking at Jack the peacock and not her.
- Spy X Family: When Yor suggests to Loid that they actually get married, he Face Plants in shock. They were both running at the time, though, and he quickly recovers.
- In Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf, the characters frequently fall over whenever they see or hear something dumb.
- The "flip-take" is mostly associated with Newspaper Comics from the early 20th century. A character says or does something stupid, explains it in the final panel, causing a smart character to faint on the floor with a large thud. Always done by falling on their back with the feet high up in the air. To add effect the reader usually only sees their feet in the air, the rest of the body falls out of frame.
- Happens a few times in Thimble Theater. In one strip, Lubry Kent Oyl is showing his family his rare pet, the whiffle hen Bernice;
Castor Oyl: Bernice, a she, eh?
Lubry: Certainly, a female. In fact, there are no male whiffle hens.
Castor: You don't mean that, uncle — You don't mean that!
Lubry: Sure I do — The males are whiffle roosters!
[Oyl family faults]
- Characters in The Katzenjammer Kids (or The Captain and The Kids) would do this, often after being pranked by the title kids.
- Occurs after every punchline in the newspaper comic Jerry on the Job,.
- In the Filipino strip Pugad Baboy, every time a character makes a pun, the other characters would react by falling to the floor while screaming.
- Often parodied in Tom the Dancing Bug every time the cartoonist does "Super Fun Pack Comix", which pretty much tackles every single cliches found in daily newspaper comics.
- Frequently used in the French comic strip Pif.
- Quick and Flupke: Also the punchline to a lot of gags. Usually Flupke does something stupid, causing either Quick or Agent 15 to faint down on their backs.
- Anything for Family: Erika keels over on her face when Kanade tells her how many of their friends have been kidnapped.
- Naru-Hina Chronicles: Naruto suggests to Hinata they can go eat anywhere, even at some place other than Ichiraku for once. She chooses to go to a teahouse, to which he agrees and he's already on his way to a teahouse. However, he stops walking and sheepishly asks her if she knows where one is, causing Hinata to do this trope.
- Twice in the film Liar Liar, Fletcher Reede runs into his vindictive boss that he insulted earlier on, and both times pulls off the rare live-action Face Fault as only Jim Carrey can.
- In a very early incarnation of this, The Three Stooges do one in "Men in Black," reacting to a goofy nurse's absurd definition of a pippin.
Nurse: A pippin is an apple with its skin on the outside.
Moe: Did you ever see an apple with its skin on the inside?
Nurse: Oh, sure I did!
Larry: You did? Where?
Nurse: In homemade apple pie.
[the Stooges faint]
- Likely inspired by the the Three Stooges, the Philippines had this as a staplemark in their comedy films during the '80s and '90s, mostly pioneered by (who some can say is the Filipino equivalent of the Stooges) comedy trio Tito, Vic & Joey.
- Psyche-outs in BASEketball often had this effect on their victims.
- In Dirty Dancing, Johnny face faults after Baby teases him while they're dancing to "Love is Strange"
- In Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, this happens twice during the trial of Miles Edgeworth.
- The first time is when Phoenix nitpicks Lotta Hart's testimony, trying to find a valid contradiction in her saying the gunshot went off on Christmas Eve, when it happened shortly after midnight and thus actually happened on Christmas Day. Everyone, including Lotta and Edgeworth, face faults upon hearing that.
- The second happens when the boat rental man testifies that he saw Edgeworth on the night of the crime, saying "Never thought I'd shoot someone" while his cravat fluttered in the wind. Edgeworth objects to this on the grounds that he never said that, and "Moreover... my cravat doesn't flutter to that extent!" Cue the the entire courtroom face faulting.
- Kamen Rider Den-O, essentially a live-action Anime, absolutely adores the face fault, but it happened best in episode 15. When Airi learns that her brother is being held hostage, she's totally nonchalant until pressed, at which point she declares her intent to make him some "special hostage snacks", eliciting a Face Fault out of the coffee shop's entire patronage.
- Happens at least once on Family Feud. One question from Fast Money: "Name something people take with them to the bathroom besides soap and a towel." Her answer? A duck. The number of people who agreed with her? 11. Dawson drops face-first onto the floor upon seeing the number.
- In another episode, the host asks "Name an animal whose legs are featured on a restaurant menu." No one gives a response, and the host promptly face-faults onto the podium before moving onto the next question.
- One of the bloopers in Whose Line Is It Anyway? consists of Brad Sherwood starting off a Hoedown with: "I was feeling frisky; I went for a drive./I took all my handguns and shot myself alive...I..." and Brad then slowly face faulted at his own failure to make sense.
- In Kamen Rider Wizard the donut shop manager and his assistant do this whenever they fail to coax Haruto, their frequent customer, into trying out any kind of donut they make other than "plain sugar".
- Matt Foley did a variation of this on SNL, falling face-first through a table... and cracking up his cast members in the process.
- Super Sentai has done this a few times, such as in Uchu Sentai Kyuranger, where Shou is asked if the Argo is really that special. With dramatic music, Shou replies that he doesn't know, sending the Kyurangers to the floor.
- Frequently occurs in the Bert-and-Ernie sketches on Sesame Street.
- Anything that startles ANYONE in Ace Attorney becomes this. Ryunosuke Naruhodo from The Great Ace Attorney probably goes the furthest with this as his reaction to having his argument cut down is to throw himself against the back wall of the defense bench then bounce off into a melodramatic faceplant on the desk.
- In Ed, Edd n Eddy: The Mis-Edventures, Edd explains the Tower of Eddy maneuver. After a beat, Ed exclaims, "HUH?!" causing Eddy to face fault.
- The Legend of Zelda:
- In Majora's Mask, Link falls flat on his face when a monkey fails to make an obvious connection. Link sneaks into the Deku Palace to talk to the captured monkey, and discover what can be done about the terrible situation of the area. The monkey refuses to speak to Link's Deku form, so Link must talk to him in human form. Midway through the conversation, the monkey needs to teach Link some Magic Music, but the instrument needs to be louder than Link's tiny ocarina. Link must transform into his Deku form, which has a large set of pipes. The monkey enthusiastically says that those will work perfectly before asking Deku Link who he happens to be, despite the fact Link just transformed right in front of him, causing a fault.
- Spirit Tracks: After the Sand Temple, a cutscene ensues of Zelda asking how to find Malladus. A mere response of "I don't know" from Anjean causes Zelda to crash to the ground, which is pretty weird considering she's still a ghost at that point.
- Super Mario Bros.:
- Peach causes everyone (everyone being Mario, Luigi, Wario, Yoshi, and DK) to do this during the intro to Mario Party 2 when after everyone starts arguing on who to rename Mario Land after, Peach's idea of a name they can all agree on is Peach Land. It also happens to a Koopa Troopa who tries to tell Mario and his friends about Bowser's invasion and then face vaulting when he gets ignored.
- Mario and his friends do a lot of face faulting in Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars.
- Lots of face faulting in Mario & Luigi too, especially in Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga.
- Done a lot in Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, such as one scene where the Mario Bros. and Prince Dreambert use it repeatedly as a Lame Pun Reaction. And Dreambert does this in the ending and then doesn't get up for about half the cut scene.
- Both the Mario Bros. and Paper Mario end up doing this in Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam when after going all over Gloomy Woods looking for berries to feed Wiggler to get him out of their way, he then asks for dessert. You can just hear the Bros thinking "Oh, you have GOT to be joking...".
- Mario has one in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door when Professor Frankly doesn't recognize him. He also elicits a second one when he can't figure out what the map means. His final phrase before the face fault was a loud shout of 'I DON'T KNOW'.
- It happens in Chapter 4 of Super Paper Mario, as well, when Squirps reveals that he doesn't remember how to get to the next Pure Heart. And another one early on, after Bestovius figures out the Mario is the HERO! ...impersonator.
- In Paper Mario: The Origami King, Mario, Olivia, and Professor Toad have to rotate four ancient statues to solve a puzzle. Each time, the tremors cause them to either fall over or nearly fall. Once they rotate the final statue, however, Olivia remembers that she floats everywhere and didn't need to fall over, which causes Mario and Professor Toad to face fault.
- WarioWare series:
- WarioWare: Twisted!: Fail one of the microgames that Mona hosts, and this is how Sal Out reacts. In the middle of her performance.
- WarioWare Gold inverts this in the campaign's final section, more specifically in the Dancing Team and Potluck Gang stages. The characters who are present will fall on their backsides if you fail their microgames in those two stages.
- WarioWare: Get It Together!: Mona inverts this trope by falling on her backside when her pets trash her room, shouting, "Really!?"
- Jack Brothers, one of the possible Combination Attacks in Persona 3, involves Jack Frost and Pyro Jack performing a terrible comedy routine. This causes all affected enemies to Face Fault, opening themselves up to a follow-up attack.
- Persona 4: When Chie gets to witness Yukiko’s Midnight Channel Program, she has gone from concern and unease to eye bulging shock and confusion on the floor.
- Beating the Expert Course on Super Hang-On has a news team come up to your character. You take your helmet off to reveal that you're an old man this whole time and it makes everyone fall flat on their faces and backs while you smoke a pipe in celebration.
- In Pokémon Let's Go, after beating Lance, he states that you have one more challenger to face. Professor Oak shows up at that moment and Lance hypes him up as the Champion, much to the shock of your in-game character... only to immediately say he's kidding seconds later, with Oak doing a Face Fault.
- In the Rescue Team games and the Rescue Team DX remake in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon, after you clear Mt Steel, you can choose to say your team doesn't need assistance and then "Two is plenty". Your partner asks if you have a special ability, in which you can choose between your body stretching and flying. Either way, your partner asks you to show your ability, but the options both consist of you saying you can't, resulting in either your partner and the two Magnemite face faulting in the originals or your partner face faulting in the DX remake.
- Later, after you clear Great Canyon, your partner asks where the world’s balance is. You can choose to escalate the wackiness by claiming that it’s in space, and if you say that your partner will know when they find it, your partner asks how, and choose the option of flying, your partner is quick to ask Pelipper to fly you and your partner to space, to which Pelipper declines and flies off. When you say that it’s impossible, your partner face faults.
- In the DX remake's Japanese exclusive trailer showcasing the Whiscash Pond, Whiscash tells Mudkip and Skitty a fictional story about the Kangaskan statue, when Kangaskan shows up to scold Whiscash for making stuff up. When Whiscash finally confesses that the Kangaskan statue story was false, Mudkip and Skitty face fault.
- World's End Club: In the manga adaptation of the prologue, Vanilla face faults after assuring to everyone they'll be able to escape... with nobody replying to her words.
- Lampshaded in the second episode of Girl-chan in Paradise. The roof was kinda slippery.
- Happens from time to time in Super Mario Bros. Z. One notable time is when E Gadd concedes that it would make more sense to make another emerald radar rather than a radar radar, but that he just didn't think of it.
- Homestar Runner: At the end of the early short "The Reddest Radish", Homestar and Pom Pom fall over out of shock when Marzipan reveals the radish Strong Bad stole wasn't her real entry in the contest, and reveals an even bigger, redder radish sitting just offscreen.
- TOME: Hilariously lampshaded by Kirbopher and Gamecrazed in Episode 2.
Gamecrazed: Why did you fall?
Kirbopher: I DON'T KNOW.
- El Goonish Shive: Susan, while contemplating the nature of relationships, considers that her aversion to "doing things" might stem more from her germaphobia than from sex-repulsion per se. To test this hypothesis, she imagines Sarah flirting with her by suggesting "things" start with a Shower of Love. It works so well that she trips and falls flat on her face.
- In Everyday Heroes, the cause was more amazement at Uma's skill, but the end result was the same.
- Girl Genius: When Gil makes the (bogus) reveal to Zola that he's been a pirate all along, this is the reaction from DuMedd, Sleipnir, Zeetha and Krosp. Not from Higgs, though — Airman Third Class Axel Higgs has long since lost the capacity to be surprised by anything.
- Synthea invokes this trope in #98 when the title character makes a "stunning" reveal, causing one of the cricket ninjas to drop out of his hiding place.
- Happens a lot in the anime-inspired comic TwoKinds. Happens twice in one page here◊
- Richard Feynman induces a classic flip-take in this strip by Jim Ottaviani and Leland Myrick.
- In My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, Rainbow Dash does this in the Cold Opening for "Sonic Rainboom", in response to Fluttershy's meek attempts at cheering.
- In Phineas and Ferb, Candace does this from time to time when she fails to show Phineas and Ferb's inventions to her mom.
- Kaeloo: In Episode 57, Stumpy, Mr. Cat and Pretty do this after Kaeloo announces that Quack Quack won the lottery again.
- In Voltron: Legendary Defender, Hunk does this when Lance yells at him for using taglines.
- Wakfu: In "The Crimson Claws", after spending the entire episode being serious, smug and composed, Adale has a sheer face-faulting expression on his face upon seeing Rushu descending from the sky.