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Musical Number Annoyance

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"SHUT UP!!! I can't STAND it anymore!
All the time, singing!
Why won't it STOP?!?!?!?"

Not everyone enjoys musicals. That even applies to the characters in musicals.

This is a form of Medium Awareness where one character (usually the more idealistic one) sings a musical number, and another character (usually the more cynical one) shows some sort of negative response to the character singing. This can vary from simply expressing annoyance (especially if the other character has done this before), to trying to stop the other character's song before they can finish it.

When it comes to Musical World Hypotheses, this usually happens in Alternate Universe and Diegetic cases. It may also be a way to make it more tolerable for audiences who dislike musicals via using an Audience Surrogate to hang a lampshade.

However, it's more than likely this person will eventually cave to a sufficiently toe-tapping number, both because The Complainer Is Always Wrong and because no matter their objections, well, they ARE in a musical.

May be due to the other character being a Dreadful Musician or Hollywood Tone-Deaf, though this is not required. Related tropes include Musicalis Interruptus, That Reminds Me of a Song, Incessant Music Madness and No Reprise, Please.


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    Audio Plays 
  • The Part 2 cliffhanger in Big Finish Doctor Who's Doctor Who And The Pirates is not any sort of danger, it's Six doing vocal warm-ups and Evelyn trying, and failing, to stop him from breaking into song. Part 3 ends up being a Musical Episode.

    Comic Books 
  • In The Muppet Show Comic Book #6, when the blues-singing frog Short-Sighted Billy Silverfish ( actually Kermit) is doing a That Reminds Me of a Song set-up he says "Oh, but you don't want to hear about that", and Skeeter starts to agree, only for him to react as though she's encouraging him to sing. Once the song is over he says "people don't seem to write songs like that any more", and Skeeter starts to reply "Thank goodness" before stopping herself.

    Films — Animation 
  • Animal Crackers: At one point in Horatio's Villain Song, his henchmen suddenly appear out of nowhere and repeat one of Horatio's lines in the style of a barbershop quartet.note  Horatio sputters angrily before telling them to leave.
    Horatio: Would you sh— No harmonization, thank you.
  • In Bambi, Friend Owl is driven nuts by the birds surrounding him singing "Let's Sing a Gay Little Spring Song" while he's trying to sleep.
  • A Car's Life: Sparky's Big Adventure: Sparky begins an "I Want" Song, but Fender stops him with an interjection of "Sparky stop, this is not a musical!".
  • Charlotte's Web: As soon as Wilbur realizes he can talk, he sings a song about it, which the other animals on the farm are annoyed by upon being woken up by it. The song ends with the ram telling Wilbur to keep it down.
  • In The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part, both Wyldstyle and Batman have annoyed reactions when they hear the first few bars of Queen Watevra Wa-Nabi's musical numbers.
    Wyldstyle: Oh, no, are we in a musical?
    Batman: Yup, get ready.
    Batman: Oh, great, more singing, right on time.
  • In The Lion King 1 ˝, Timon is revealed to be responsible for the collapse of "I Just Can't Wait to be King" in the original, because he was trying to sleep.
  • In Moana, when the titular character comments to herself that the ocean chose her for a reason, Maui responds with "If you start singing, I'm gonna throw up."
  • The Nut Job 2: Nutty by Nature: When Andi starts, Surly reacts in confusion and annoyance. The other park animals seem to agree with him, calling it weird.
  • Shrek: When they first meet, Donkey offers Shrek his friendship by singing "(You Gotta Have) Friends", which quickly bugs Shrek.
    Shrek: STOP! SINGING! Well, it's no wonder you don't have any friends!
    Donkey: Wow, only a true friend would be that brutally honest.
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: Most of the other dwarfs are enchanted by Snow White singing "Someday My Prince Will Come", save for Grumpy, who responds by calling it mush.
  • Played for drama in Steven Universe: The Movie: Spinel is not generally averse to musical numbers, but when Steven sings "Change" to convince her she can change for the better, she tries to verbally and physically Shut Up, Kirk!.
    Spinel: Just can it, won't ya?! You can't just make everything better by singing SOME STUPID SONG!
  • Tangled: Flynn shows an unamused look of disbelief throughout the "I've Got a Dream" number, and only joins in after the tough men in the pub threaten him with weapons into doing so.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Enchanted, Robert is very annoyed by the "That's How You Know" number and initially tries to get Giselle to stop singing, then when others join in, he wonders how they know the song and, while still annoyed, reluctantly allows them to sing but doesn't join in because he, in his own words, "doesn't dance and really doesn't sing".
  • Hercules Returns. Everyone has a "No. Just… No" Reaction whenever Hercules is about to break into song. Delilah has a similar response when someone starts singing the Tom Jones song Delilah.
  • Little Shop of Horrors. Seymour and Audrey have started a reprise of the sappy love song "Suddenly Seymour" when an executive asks them to stop singing because he has a business proposal.
  • In Monty Python and the Holy Grail, the swamp king has arranged a marriage between his son Herbert and a nearby princess with "large tracts of land." Prince Herbert, something of a mopey young fellow, doesn't want the marriage and constantly threatens to break out in song over his feelings. The king not only shuts him up but the pre-recorded orchestra as well.
  • Road to Bali: Just as Bing Crosby is about to do a musical number, Bob Hope quips to the audience "He's going to sing folks. Now's the time to get your popcorn."
  • Spirited (2022): Played With. Jacob Marley is okay with a musical number whenever he and the Ghosts of Past, Present, and Future manage to redeem a soul, but outside of that, he does get a bit tired of them, even to the point of asking one be skipped to move the plot along.

    Live-Action Television 
  • Once Upon a Time has "With a Dream in Your Heart", a Musical Episode where Emma, the Charmings, Regina, Zelena and Hook all get musical numbers, but Rumplestiltskin refuses to, telling Regina that the Dark One doesn't sing and acting annoyed at the whole concept.
  • When Olive joins a nunnery to escape the burdens of being the cast Secret-Keeper in Pushing Daisies she twirls and sings around the mountains in a not-so-subtle Shout-Out to The Sound of Music only for other passing nuns to shush her.
  • Schmigadoon!: While trapped in a musical land, Josh scoffs at all the singing and dancing going on around them, while Melissa is more receptive.

    Print Media 
  • MAD Magazine: Discussed in one Planet Tad insert, where Tad wishes that there was a musical where one character freaks out and wonders how the hell everyone around him learned to do an elaborate song and dance routine without him finding out.

    Puppet Shows 
  • Lamb Chop's Play-Along ends every episode with "The Song That Doesn't End", which the kids and puppet sing, causing Shari to be annoyed. When she thinks it has stopped, Charlie Horse comes in and tries to begin the song again, but she tells him to be quiet and go away.
  • Sesame Street:
    • Bert is often annoyed when Ernie bursts into song:
      • In "Feeling Good, Feeling Bad", Bert is in a funk and Ernie tries singing to cheer him up. Bert does join in, but at the end, he snaps, "And I don't care!", which offends Ernie and the situation reverses, however, Ernie sort of more whines the "I don't care" line, which means that no one gets offended and both are happy again.
      • In one skit, Ernie sings about sleep in the middle of the night. This initially annoys Bert who wonders how he's going to get any sleep, but then he joins in.
      • Ernie once sings about how because they're friends, they don't mind each other's annoying habits. Bert, however, does mind the singing because it's at night and goes downstairs to sleep in the kitchen instead.
    • In one sketch, some hairdressers are annoyed by Guy Smiley and his friends singing about air every time someone says a word that rhymes with it, such as "hair", "chair", and "rare".
    • The show is very musical, much to the chagrin of Oscar the Grouch, although he does have his own songs like "I Love Trash". In the Massive Multiplayer Crossover "We Are Family", he hates the titular song and thinks it's Sickeningly Sweet.

  • In Avenue Q, during the "If You Were Gay" number, Rod frequently expresses annoyance at Nicky's singing. This is A.) Because he is indeed gay but is too shy to come out, B.) Because he is trying to read, and C.) Because he is a parody of Bert from Sesame Street, who is frequently annoyed by Ernie's singing.
  • In The Guy Who Didn't Like Musicals, Paul gets annoyed at everyone in Hatchetfield singing "La Di Da Da Day," which eventually progresses to outright fear as they get progressively more pushy for him to join them. He's quite justified to be unnerved, as it's later revealed all the singing is the result of an alien infection.
  • Lampshaded, Parodied, Discussed and Conversed in Something Rotten!, when protagonist Nick Bottom visits the soothsayer Thomas Nostradamus to find out what will make his failing theatrical productions a smash hit. Nostradamus peers into the future and discovers musical theater, which kicks off a song-and-dance number during which an incredulous Nick describes exactly why he thinks actors breaking into song-and-dance numbers during a show is the stupidest thing he's ever heard of:
    Nick: Wait, wait, wait, so an actor is saying his lines and then out of nowhere he just starts singing?
    Nostradamus: Yes.
    Nick: Well that is the...
    [singing] Stupidest thing that I have ever heard
    You're doing a play, got something to say
    So you sing it? It's absurd
    Who on Earth is going to sit there
    While an actor breaks into song?
    What possible thought could the audience think
    Other than "this is horribly wrong?"
  • One grounded passenger in Come from Away switches seats because of "the drunk people at the back of the plane singing at the top of their lungs".

    Web Animation 
  • Beauty and the Beast (Phelous): At one point, Wabuu's cronies attempt to sing "Gaston" from Disney's Beauty and the Beast, but with Wabuu's name. It doesn't work out because they're all terrible singers. Wabuu is annoyed, but it's implied that this is mostly because they didn't do a good job at praising him. Later, Wuschel tries to start up the song again, but Wabuu tells Wuschel that he's run out of patience for their terrible singing and shoots Wuschel to death.
    Wabuu: It's too late to suck up through song now, Wuschel!
  • In the pilot of Hazbin Hotel, as Charlie prepares for her television interview, she considers singing a song, only for her girlfriend Vaggie to tell her "Life isn't a musical, hun". Despite Vaggie's insistence not to sing, Charlie does so anyway on live TV, much to Vaggie's frustration.
  • In season two episode of Helluva Boss "Western Energy", Outlaw Bounty Hunter Striker has a mariachi band singing his praises as he takes his bound quarry back to his hideout. Once he gets there, one singer gets the final verse as a solo that they drag out for several seconds. Striker is clearly annoyed waiting for this to finish before eventually blowing up at them to shut up and to stop following him everywhere singing about him. The band shows up later being asked by Millie for directions to Striker, she quickly cuts them off before they start singing again and asks them to answer in plain speech.

    Web Videos 
  • Suburban Knights: Linkara keeps trying to turn the adventure into a musical. Every time he starts singing, everyone else around him groans, and at one point he's attacked to keep him from continuing the song.

    Western Animation 
  • Animaniacs: In "Jokahontas", when Skippy hears the first few notes of Slappy's planned musical number "Maple Leaf Ditty", he gets concerned that Slappy is going to break into song. However, Slappy isn't interested in singing either and they both exit the episode having made their cameos.
  • In the Batman: The Brave and the Bold Musical Episode "Mayhem of the Music Meister!", Batman gets increasingly fed up with the titular villain's singing until he clocks the guy straight in the face at the end of the last song.
  • Bob's Burgers: In "Fluoise", Louise has a fever dream featuring her toys, and she gets increasingly annoyed with the musical numbers within the dream.
    Louise: No songs about why you hate the fortress!
  • Futurama: In "Hell is Other Robots", Bender reacts this way to the opening of the Robot Devil's Villain Song.
    Bender: Aw crap, singing. Mind if I smoke?
  • The Lion Guard: In "The Kilio Valley Fire", the leaders of the villainous animal clans argue in song over who gets to run the ruined Kilio Valley. They all turn to Kiburi, leader of his crocodile clan, expecting him to join in their musical number, but he flatly replies, "I don't sing."
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • In the series premiere, when the Mane Six are trapped in a dark forest filled with terrifying faces in the trees, Pinkie Pie begins to sing an upbeat song about laughing at your fears. The other are (initially) not pleased.
      Twilight Sparkle: Tell me she's not...
      Rarity: She is.
    • My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Forgotten Friendship has Trixie and Sunset view a recording of events that played out a few minutes ago to regain the memories they lost, which includes Wallflower Blush's musical number. It isn't long before Trixie opts to skip it, remarking how long it is as they fast-forward to the important part.
  • Phineas and Ferb:
    • In the episode "Wizard of Odd", which mostly takes place in Candace's Wizard of Oz-inspired dream, she agrees to the request of Baljeet, in this episode serving as the counterpart to the scarecrow, to come with her to see the wizard as long as he stops singing, later expressing hope that there won't be a lot of singing in the dream. She also expresses relief that, though Buford does sing in her dream, his song is very short.
    • The episode "One Good Turn" has Buford doing this.
      Ferb: I'm filled with remorse, That we haven't, of course, Even thought of building an obstacle course.
      Phineas: Then let's build one and make it our new tour de force!
      Ferb: That is a plan I can clearly endorse.
      Phineas: Of course!
      Baljeet: Of course!
      Phineas: Of course!
      Buford: Of course! I'm puttin' an end to this before it breaks into song! Where's Perry?
  • In the Rocko's Modern Life Musical Episode "Zanzibar", Rocko (who never sings in the entire episode despite being the series' titular protagonist) leads a mob of singers to Conglom-O. A security guard asks him how they know the words.
    Rocko: I don't know the words.
    Mob: [singing] He doesn't know the words!
    Rocko: SHUT UP!
  • The Simpsons: In the musical Clip Show "All Singing, All Dancing", Snake becomes so annoyed by the family's constant singing that he tries to shoot them several times.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: In "A Flea in Her Dome", SpongeBob begins singing a song to greet Sandy on her return from Texas, but her bus driver will have none of it:
    SpongeBob: [singing] Welcome home Sandy, you know that we missed ya—
    Bus driver: NO! No one wants to hear you sing!
    Sandy: Sorry, SpongeBob. He's got a fierce "no singing" policy.
  • In the Steven Universe episode "Coach Steven", after the song "Strong in the Real Way" Sadie asks Steven if he'll work out too after Lars, Sadie, and his dad collapse in exhaustion, confusing Steven. Lars then states that Steven has been singing the entire time, not working.
    Lars: We've been working out, you've just been singing some dumb song!
  • During the musical season of Total Drama World Tour, Chris declares that every episode must have the contestants sing or face elimination. Duncan and Gwen are not happy about it and both have to be effectively threatened into singing in the first episode. Duncan even quits just so he doesn't have to sing when Chris tries to coerce him into singing a reprise in the same episode.
  • A Running Gag in Stanley is Dennis' heavy dislike of the song that Harry and Elsie sing Once an Episode about the Great Big Book of Everything, to the point he starts telling Stanley to be discreet when taking out the book lest they hear and come running, which never works; Harry and Elsie always show up to sing, even if the rest of the cast is nowhere near Stanley's house.
  • VeggieTales
    • In "Dave and the Giant Pickle", King Saul (played by Archibald) reacts with "You're not going to sing, are you?" right before Dave (played by Junior Asparagus) sings "Big Things Too".
    • Bob often becomes annoyed by the "What Have We Learned" song QWERTY the computer plays at the end Once per Episode. Subverted in later episodes, when Bob finds himself warming up to the song and often showing frustration at it being interrupted.


Video Example(s):


Corn Puddin'

An old-fashioned hoedown about the small town's love for corn pudding. Melissa's into it; Josh isn't.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (6 votes)

Example of:

Main / OdeToFood

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