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It Wasn't Easy

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How did the ludicrous thing happen? "It wasn't easy!"

A Stock Phrase, and a staple of surrealistic comedy, this trope effectively combines a Watsonian Handwave with a Noodle Incident to explain the presence of something bizarre or otherwise impossible for the given setting.


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    Film — Live-Action 
  • In Big Trouble in Little China, Egg Shen disappears after the fight in the assembly hall, then abruptly reappears to throw his friends an escape rope through a hole in the ceiling. When asked how the he got up there, Egg just says, "It wasn't easy."
  • In Jaws: The Revenge, after Hoagie's plane is attacked by the shark and pulled under, he appears climbing up into the heroes' boat. When Hoagie is asked how he managed to escape from the shark, his only answer is "It wasn't easy!".
  • In Halloween III: Season of the Witch, Cochrane's only explanation of how he got a piece of Stonehenge into his laboratory is "We had a time getting it here. You wouldn't believe how we did it."
  • The Pink Panther (1963) ends with Clouseau being framed for the jewel robbery by his wife and the real thief. As he's being driven away from the court he's amazed at the cheering fans (many women) surrounding them, who consider the Phantom to be a sexy folk hero. One of the admiring officers asks how he'd done such remarkable work, and he slowly replies, " wasn't easy."
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: When Newt Scamander, Tina Goldstein, and Jacob Kowalski try to catch Newt's Demiguise (with the powers of Futureshadowing and Invisibility), Tina wonders aloud how Newt managed to capture it the previous time. Newt Scamander replies, "With immense difficulty," which doesn't answer Tina's question, as she was hoping for a repeatable plan.

  • The Culture: In Consider Phlebas by Iain M. Banks, Balveda's escape from the Hand of God happened offscreen. In the discussion afterwards...
    Horza [disbelieving]: Unarmed, you killed an Idiran in full armour and toting a laser?
    Balveda [shrugs]: Horza, I didn't say it was easy.

    Live-Action TV 

    Video Games 
  • Garrus utters one in Mass Effect 2, when you find out that he's the one who's pissed off every major mercenary/criminal organization in the Terminus Systems to the point where they're all working together to bring him down. The line goes, in his usual sarcastic (albeit tired) tone:
    It wasn't easy... I reaaaallly had to work at it.
    • Although it's pretty clear what he did to hack them off (and you can get details if you ask about the specific mercenary leaders coming after you). The real miracle is that he didn't die in the process of screwing over each and every underworld element on Omega (except Aria) in order.
    • Zaeed's "explanation" for how he survived being held down by two men and shot in the face plays it straight, though. All we get is "Rage is a hell of an anesthetic." Most likely the (microscopic) bullet hit at the wrong angle and deflected with survivable damage, which is unlikely but VAGUELY possible.

    Western Animation 
  • Phineas and Ferb:
    Candace: How did you guys become pop stars!?
    Phineas: Well, it wasn't easy. It took most of the morning and half a dozen phone calls. But, if you're willing to put in the work-
    [Candace stomps off]
    • Of course, for this show, that's more explanation than we usually get.
  • As part of one of Homer's Zany Schemes in The Simpsons episode "Mom and Pop Art", he and Bart break into the zoo at night. Covered in cuts and bruises, Bart reports to Homer:
    Bart: Okay, Homer, it wasn't easy, but I managed to snorkel the grizzlies.
  • Looney Tunes: In "The Super Snooper", when Daffy Duck (as detective Duck Drake) is told by a Beverage Hills mansion butler to "walk this way" and mimics the butler's peculiar manner of walking, he turns to us and says, "T'ain't easy!"
  • In the Speed Buggy episode "The Ringmaster", the eponymous car says of bringing the villain to justice, "It wasn't easy, pulling all those circus wagons!"
  • A second season episode of Megas XLR involved the return of Magnanimous, who was last seen sucked into a quantum singularity. When Kiva asks how he managed to escape, this is his reply.


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