Some startling, extraordinary event occurs, and a bewildered spectator (archetypally, a lone tramp with a bottle) decides that some consumable they're working on is causing hallucinations, and, after taking a long look at it, promptly puts the drink down, throws it away or pours it out on the ground. They might also take a vow of sobriety out loud (often with one hand raised), or write down a pledge to stop drinking or drugging.
If the person realizes their eyes and/or mind are not playing tricks on them, they may either recant or find a loophole in their decision.
Where this trope originated isn't clear. "Taking the pledge" to stop drinking alcoholic beverages certainly dates back to the Temperance movement of the late 1800s, and it likely became a joke as a put-down to that movement. However, it's less clear why the joke involves having hallucinations be the trigger for this action. It may be a throwback to the time of Prohibition, when poorly-brewed alcoholic drinks often contained methanol, which can cause brain damage and blindness. Or to the Great Depression, when alcoholic bums often resorted to drinking Sterno which also contains methanol. It might also come from the (incorrect) idea that the disorder called "delirium tremens," which often includes hallucinations, is a symptom of drinking too much. note
As one of those "old-fashioned" comedy gags, it's rarely played straight nowadays, largely being replaced by Stoners Are Funny. Contrast I Need a Freaking Drink (where the situation will make someone on screen turn to drinking). A Sister Trope to Mistaken for Bad Vision, when that trope occurs without alcohol.
Compare with Acid Reflux Nightmare, where someone swears off consumption of something after it gives them bad dreams. Also compare with Bizarre Dream Rationalization, when a character brushes off the extraordinary things they're seeing as being part of a dream.
- In Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie: Pyramid of Light, Pegasus awakens from a horrific nightmare and swears, "No more white wine spritzers before bedtime for me." Red wine spritzers are just fine, though, as we learn in his very next scene.
- Digimon Adventure: A guy with a beer sees a couple of giant Digimon fighting...and simply laments that he's wasted his life.
- Doraemon: Nobita's Great Battle of the Mermaid King: Nobita's father, Nobisuke, staggers out of a saké bar, drunk, and suddenly saw a school of fish swimming through the air. The fishes are actually summoned by Doraemon's Underwater Pump which simulates air into a watery environment, but Nobisuke thought he's drinking too much.
- Johnny Gardhouse does a bit where he describes this as his response to encountering the giant 50-foot moose statue outside of Moosejaw, Saskatchewan ('"...ten feet from the highway.. ON A CURVE"')
- Seeing something startling in a particular truck, Fall Swanhilde in Wet Moon sniffs at a carton of possibly-expired orange juice.
- An issue of Cerebus the Aardvark puts a twist on this. When a gardener spots what appears to be Lord Julius in a dress (It Makes Sense in Context), he pulls out his flask, takes one last swig, then throws the rest away.
- An issue of The Amazing Spider-Man from the eighties has Peter getting a well-paying assignment from J. Jonah Jameson and gleefully dancing with a random homeless person while dressed as Spidey. In the next panel, the guy is seen throwing his beer bottle behind him.
Man: That's it. Not another drink as long as I live.
- In one storyline in The Mighty Thor, a drunk stumbles into an alley and runs into the irate goats pulling Thor's chariot, who've been stranded in the alley while Thor is... temporarily discommoded. He promptly declares he's going on the wagon. Later on, he goes back on it and winds up in the same alley, where he's confronted with the goats, the chariot, and a 6'6'' frog in full Thor regalia. As he flees, he swears that this time he really really is never going to touch the stuff again.
- Disney Ducks Comic Universe:
- In Don Rosa's Of Ducks, Dimes, and Destinies, a man sees a time-traveling Magica de Spell magically alter her clothes, and in the next panel his arm can be seen in the background, pouring out the beer he was drinking.
- Another Rosa story, A Matter of Gravity, has Magica alter Donald and Scrooge's personal gravity, causing them to "fall" sideways like they would otherwise fall downwards. At one point they're in the park, standing sideways on a tree, trying to think of a way to get to Magica before she can get away. A picknicker spots them, does a double take, then throws away the pickled sausage he's eating and sniffs the brine suspiciously.
- Issue 32 of Icon has Icon talk to Lenny about life experiences while walking past a man boozing while sitting on a bench. The man reacts to seeing a black man in a red and green costume with a cape by pouring his bottle onto the ground.
- In Spirou & Fantasio issue "Prisoner of Buddha", Spirou decides to shut Fantasio's rambling up by using the Gamma-Ray Energy Device on him, promptly making Fantasio fly out of a hotel window outside before being pulled in. In the process of floating in midair, Fantasio has a short conversation with a man drinking whiskey on the floor below him, through the window. Cut to the next panel of the terrified, green-faced man pouring the whiskey to the sink, saying "No more 'Morning Whiskeys' for me. No more."
- In Tintin, this happens to Captain Haddock on various occasions, like when he sees Professor Calculus's portrait speak to him in The Seven Crystal Balls. Of course he can never stick with it.
- A Wonder Wart Hog story from 1967 has alter ego Philbert Desanex in a San Francisco park full of hippies needing to change into superhero mode. He casually strolls into a circle of marijuana smokers, disappears into the cloud of smoke, and flies out in costume. One smoker nervously declares "No thanks, man, I've had enough!"
- When Asterix, Obelix, Cacofonix, and the fakir Watziznehm are flying to India in Asterix and the Magic Carpet, they stop by a Roman legionary camp and ask for directions. A drunk legionary, upon seeing the group on their flying carpet, promptly has his head soaked and swears off wine.
Legionary: Well, Incautius, Gaulish wine too much for you, eh?
Incautius: Too true! I swear I'll never be I over the VIIInote again!
- The Legend of Wonder Woman (2016): The fighter pilot that is flying alongside the B-17 when Tilly pushes the invisibility button looks wide eyed at what appear to be a bunch of young women standing in midair and flying alongside him where there used to be a bomber and promptly tossed his flask over his shoulder.
- Typical of Mortadelo y Filemón. In its story Valor y... ˇal toro!, for instance, a hotel receptionist empties a tequila bottle on a flower pot after seeing a man with a bull's tail (who was actually a bull disguised as a man, of course).
- Rulah, Jungle Goddess: In "Stone Jungle" (Zoot Comics #13a), Rulah is in New York City when a drunk attempts to hop into her taxi. On seeing the eponymous Jungle Princess in her Fur Bikini in the back seat, accompanied by her pet monkey, he runs away declaring:
"From now on nothing but milk for me...I swear..."
- In a Dilbert story arc, Dilbert becomes so insignificant to the company that he becomes literally invisible. Dogbert proposes having Ratbert sit on his head to attract people's attention. Instead, other people can only see a floating talking rat. Wally then looks at his mug and blames the unusual sight on the Colombian coffee he's drinking.
- In one Krazy Kat strip, Krazy has her guitar and a jug of catnip. When she starts singing "Roll Along, silvery Moon," the moon starts to roll through the sky. The last frame shows Krazy dropping the catnip off the cliff.
- A Garfield strip had him stomp a spider after pouring himself a cup of coffee. As he takes his first sip, a tiny ambulance drives up, two spiders exit it with a stretcher, load the injured spider up, and drive off. Garfield pours his coffee back in the pot as a result.
- One Mandrake the Magician storyline has a man who's able to run at Super-Speed dash past a homeless drunk who's about to take a swig from a whiskey bottle. Seeing this, the drunk promptly throws away the bottle while swearing off alcohol.
- The Crankshaft strip for September 2nd, 2014 has the Running Gag of Crankshaft lighting his barbecue and the resultant explosion because he used too much lighter fluid. One of Crankshaft's neighbors is drinking a can of beer, sees the flaming barbecue flying through the air and says "That's it! I'm wearing off the sauce for good!"
- In Bad bottle of Scrumpy, the RED Demoman is drinking as usual when he spots Derpy Hooves. He throws his bottle away afterwards.
- In Growing Up Kneazle a drunk who saw the flying Ford Anglia taking off poured out the rest of his bottle.
- In The Last Chance a drunk who saw Harry and Hermione apparate into an alley and then back out again throws his bottle into a trash can.
- Penny Saves Paldea: While reflecting on evidence that the reality around Paldea is being distorted, Clavell muses that he initially thought the strange occurrences were a side-effect of his preferred kind of morning coffee.
- In the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fanfic "Screwball Over", after Berry Punch (who is commonly depicted in fanfiction as a bit of a lush) witnesses a small army of miniature versions of Screwballnote going by, she dumps out a flask of alcohol she was carrying and swears off drinking.
- In the third installment of the The X-Files fanfic Talking Appliances, Mulder's cell phone starts talking to Skinner (yes indeed). The latter promptly makes a mental note to himself to cut down on the coffee.
- At one point in the This Time Round Round Robin Reflections of Reality (aka "The Pro-Fun Quadrille"), one unnamed character notices a small elephant sitting on the bar and orders two Klatchian coffees. When it's explained to him that the elephant's real, he says that in that case, he'll have a scumble.
- Us and Them: A Wutai man drinking sake is out fishing on a lake when he sees Sephiroth flying along pulling a boat with Aeris, their son Keter and several Cetra engineers along behind him. The narration notes he never touches a drink again after that.
- On at least two occasions in Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series, Kaiba has run into this problem. The first is when he misremembers his most iconic scene with the Season Zero animation (in which he had green hair). The second is a vision from the Millennium Rod combined with a long Aqua Teen Hunger Force reference. Both times, he concludes he has to cut down on the drugs.
- Averted in the Space Quest fan game, Vohaul Strikes Back. When Roger smashes a snowman, in order to get ahold of a wallet embedded inside it, this conversation happens between two of Vohaul's gorilla soldiers.
Norm: Ted, I just felt a great disturbance in the Force.Ted: Yeah?Norm: It was as if... as if thousands of tiny snowflakes suddenly cried out in terror... and were suddenly silenced.Ted: You should really cut down on the sugar, Norm.Norm: Yeah... but we both know I'm not gonna.Ted: ...hooray for donuts!Norm: Yay!
- This trope is common in Disney works, as they not only avert Frothy Mugs of Water, but also show the results of excessive drinking:
- The Aristocats: Scat Cat and his band go running to help O'Malley save Duchess and the kittens, and Roquefort is running after them to catch up. They run past a man at a sidewalk café who, at the sight of a mouse apparently chasing a group of anxious cats, takes the bottle of wine off his table and sadly upends it onto the sidewalk.
- Seen in Pinocchio, where when Pinocchio sees his friend Lampwick starting to transform into a donkey. He pushes away the mug of beer he's drinking, and when it continues he looks at and then drops the cigar he had as well. Good thing, too, because the implication is that the drink and cigars are what's transforming Lampwick.
- In The Princess and the Frog, one of the party-goers at Charlotte's costume party did this after seeing a disembodied giraffe's head being chased by a dog dressed as a mermaid. Since he's wearing an octopus costume, he does it with eight glasses at once.
- In one of the Mater's Tall Tales shorts, Mater encounters a UFO (which, being a vehicle, is sentient). One of the things they do together is teaching Mater how to fly. While flying around, Mater at one point flies past Fillmore, who's drinking oil. Upon seeing Mater, Fillmore then silently pushes the oil can away with a disturbed expression.
- A What Could Have Been example: In the original My Little Pony movie, one of the ponies would search for help, crossing over into Hasbro's other cartoons in the process, including The Transformers and G.I. Joe. When she arrived at the latter, she would encounter Shipwreck, who would swear off drinking as a result. Hasbro nixed it.
- In The Simpsons Movie, the sight of a giant dome being lowered onto Springfield causes all the patrons of the bar to run into a church... and all the people in the church to run into the bar.
- In Ant-Man and the Wasp, Stan Lee's character watches his car shrink down to shoe-sized and makes this remark:
Stan: Well, the sixties were fun, but now I'm paying for it!
- In Asterix & Obelix: The Middle Kingdom, Titanix takes a meaningful look at his pipe (which the reggae background music had implied was full of weed) after seeing Asterix and Obelix punch guys through the ceiling.
- Superman II: General Zod sinks into a lake, then levitates himself to the surface and walks across it. Seeing this, a fisherman nearby looks at a cup of something he's drinking and throws it away.
- James Bond: A Running Gag found in the Roger Moore films (which were Lighter and Softer than the previous and following ones).
- The Spy Who Loved Me: When Bond's car/submarine Lotus Esprit drives out of the ocean onto a beach in Sardinia, a wine-drinking beachgoer takes a bewildered look at his bottle.
- Moonraker: Bond drives an amphibious gondola up on the canals and ground streets of Venice. A man sees this and looks disbelievingly at the wine he's drinking. A different take on this trope happens slightly earlier, when an elderly chain-smoker throws away his cigarette after seeing a coffin floating in front of him (knocked off a hearse boat during a chase scene).
- For Your Eyes Only: Bond, on skis, slides across a restaurant table. It's the same guy as the two previous movies (actor Victor Tourjansky).
- Octopussy: a guard looks over the wall and sees a couple of elephants and some female circus acrobats forming a human ladder. He looks at the bottle in his hand in confusion, before Octopussy knocks him out with some hurled bolas.
- The Pink Panther (1963): Inspector Clouseau and the police are chasing both Phantoms, and everyone is in a ridiculous costume: the Phantoms are dressed as gorillas, Clouseau is a knight, and two police officers are in a zebra costume. For about five minutes, they somehow keep driving through the same intersection, passing the same disbelieving spectator with a bottle of whiskey. Eventually the drunk gets a chair and sits down to watch the rest of the shenanigans.
- Plan 9 from Outer Space, in a Creator Cameo from Ed Wood. A bit Harsher in Hindsight considering his later alcoholism.
- The Giant Gila Monster: after some guy sees the giant lizard cross the road. Apparently, drinking and driving simultaneously isn't a good idea.
- Toyed with in Dogma. The characters, including Jay and Silent Bob, get teleported by an angel from the middle of the woods to a fancy restaurant. Jay looks at the joint he had been smoking and says, "Damn, I think this shit just kicked in!" and continues puffing away.
- Shown in Attack of the 60 Ft. Centerfold, when a wandering drunk gives up booze upon seeing the titular protagonist.
- The Amazing Colossal Man, where the sight of title giant causes one of the occupants of a car to toss away a bottle declaring "Not another drop as long as I live!" When Joel and the Bots riffed the movie, they lampshade the bottle toss before the drunk even says the line.
- Also happens with the prospector in Attack of the 50 Ft. Woman.
- In Bringing Up Baby, the gardener starts drinking in response to the crazy goings-on, but pours out his bottle of whiskey when he sees the leopard.
- At the end of Ironweed, the main character Francis sees his wife in a train car. When he realizes that she is a hallucination, he angrily throws his bottle of whiskey (and, symbolically, his alcoholism) out of the car. An extremely rare case where this trope is Played for Drama.
- In The Playhouse, after being confounded by a pair of identical twins and a series of mirrors, Buster Keaton's character smashes his flask on the floor and writes, "I resolve never to drink anymore." After he realizes he's been dealing with not one girl, but two, he hastily appends the words, "but just as much."
- In Transporter 2 a drunk bum is in an alley when he sees the heroes' car drive over him, straddling the buildings on either side of the alley. He then looks at his flask in complete shock.
- In X-Men: First Class, after seeing Riptide demonstrate his power, Hendry's reaction is to ask what the hell Shaw put in his drink.
- In Flesh and the Devil, the reverend, of all people, does this at the fancy ball, when he sees a pair of twins and believes he is seeing double.
- A blink-and-you'll-miss-it version appears in the police chase scene in Batman Begins. A lot attendant, upon seeing the Batmobile and the police cars enter the parking structure, looks down at his drink as if there's something wrong with it.
- Sgt. Kabukiman N.Y.P.D.: When he saw Kabukiman fights off some thugs in Central Park, an African-American homeless man empties out his bottle of liquor on the pavement.
- Never Give a Sucker an Even Break: W. C. Fields throws away his flask after coming face-to-face with a gorilla on a mountaintop in Russia.
Fields: Last time it was Pink Elephants.
- Happens with a recurring background character in the Russian Super-Hero Film Black Lightning when he sees the car flying through the air, the first time sitting down to drink with friends he puts his glass down and seems ready to swear off drinking only to be shown buying the classic booze-in-a-brown-paper-bag later and promptly dropping it into the trash as he sees the flying car once again. Later is shown out jogging and thinking it'll stop him hallucinating flying cars (ironically jogging past the protagonist as he's out walking with his girlfriend), having somehow throughout the film seeing and hearing none of the news about the flying car being real.
- Wishmaster: After wishing that the pharmacist who threw him out of the drug store contracted cancer and died, the bum watches in horror as tumors erupt all over the pharmacist's body and he collapses in pain. The bum then throws the cigarette he is smoking down in disgust.
- Our Gang: In the silent short Barnum & Ringling, Inc., the Rascals hold a circus inside a fancy hotel, only for the the animals to get loose and wreak havoc. In one scene, a man (Oliver Hardy) is drinking some whiskey in his bathroom when he encounters an ostrich, which makes him think he's seeing things and pour the rest into the sink (from which the ostrich takes a sip).
- In Fly Away Home, Amy and Thomas accidentally end up flying through downtown Baltimore after Thomas' navigational system quits on him while they're in heavy fog. In a news broadcast about the event, a reporter quips that, "If anybody is still into a two-martini lunch in Baltimore, they may swear off for good after this."
- Sunrise: A server at a fancy restaurant in the city swigs wine straight from a bottle he is supposed to be serving. The escaped piglet from the funfair sneaks into the kitchen and gets tangled in a tablecloth in a way that resembles a Bedsheet Ghost; when the frightened server sees this, he drops the bottle on the ground and runs off.
- In Bored of the Rings, the rather odd-looking party is camped out at a crossroads:
Circling far overhead, unseen by the company, the leader of a band of black spy-crows peered through a pair of binoculars, cursed in the harsh tongue of his kind, and swore off grapes for the rest of his life.
- According to one of the Harry Potter supplemental books, events where small numbers of Muggles had seen some form of magic or magical creature were sometimes covered up by convincing them they'd had too much to drink.
- In The Hounds of the Morrigan, the Seargent decides he's got to stop taking Quick Nips of his confiscated hooch when he starts seeing flying furniture. Of course, this is merely his Weirdness Censor in play—he really is seeing flying furniture, because a couple of witches have just moved in to the neighborhood.
- Harry's Mad: After escaping his birdnapper and recovering under the care of another human, Madison the talking parrot tries to use a payphone to contact the human family looking after him. The only person who happens to see this is, of course, drunk, and promptly decides it's time he stopped.
- In Terry Pratchett's first short story, "The Hades Business", Mr Nicholas Lucifer manifests himself on a football pitch, on Cup Final day. Entire pubs full of people watching the match spontaneously sign the Pledge.
- In The Colour of Magic, when Twoflower first enters the Broken Drum, the patrons take one look at the Luggage, a magical trunk that walks around on multiple legs, and as one, look into their mugs.
- In Velveteen vs. The Junior Super Patriots, any innocent river rat who saw the amassed crayfish would have sworn off everything for life, just to avoid the chance of seeing something like that twice.
- A variant happens in The Borrowers. When the housekeeper finds the Borrowers and starts telling everyone she's seen tiny people in the house, Great-Aunt Sophie finds the idea hilarious. She tells the housemaid, "If you want to get rid of them, the answer is simple! Just keep the cork in." This makes sense, given that Great-Aunt Sophie has seen the Borrowers after she's been drinking, so she always attributes them to being drunken hallucinations.
- Played with when Tom-Jon is transported to a world of talking animals in the first Spellsinger book while high. He assumes he's hallucinating, but doesn't think of this as a reason to quit so much as a reason to make sure he knows what he's actually got before he smokes it.
- In The Hundred and One Dalmatians, a gentleman off to a Christmas party catches sight of the titular dogs en masse and declares "And I haven't even begun Christmas yet!"
- Star Wars Legends:
- In Dark Rendezvous, Yoda, disguised inside a droid chassis, uses the Force to telekinetically seal a security droid inside a bathroom stall after failing to evade pursuit by said droid. This strange sight is witnessed by a heavily intoxicated onlooker, who promptly pours the remainder of his drink down the drain.
- In Star Wars: Kenobi, after Wyle Ulbreck, an old moisture farmer, drunkenly witnesses Ben break up a bar brawl in the prologue, it's offhandedly mentioned some time later that he's sworn off of liquor.
- In one of the stories from The LawDog Files, the narrator is radioed to assist a fellow police officer who happens to be completely "nekkid". He promptly eyes his chimichanga suspiciously and hopes that he's just hearing things.
- Lampshaded in The Day of the Triffids when the public is first shown news footage of walking plants (unfortunately it soon becomes a case of Who's Laughing Now?).
"And now, folks, get a load of what our cameraman found in Ecuador. Vegetables on vacation! You've only seen this kind of thing after a party, but down in sunny Ecuador they see it any time—and no hangover to follow!
- Averted in A Sorceress in New York. When a homeless man sees Zara walk by, in casual clothes, he thinks nothing of it and takes a drink. But almost immediately afterwards, he sees Zara return in a more formal outfit.
"Wow... this is some good beer!"
- In The Goodies episode with Frakenfido, a man walking out of an optometrist takes off his new glasses after seeing the giant mutant pup... and promptly walks into a lamppost.
- Inverted when the Sliders visit a world where mandatory drug use keeps everyone in line. A bystander sees them leave through an interdimensional portal and murmurs, "Oh, this new formula... outstanding!"
- In an episode of Smallville, washed-up reporter/alcoholic Perry White is wandering through the titular town, and his visit happens to coincide with sunspot activity that's causing Clark Kent's powers to fluctuate uncontrollably. A tractor gets stuck in the mud, and Clark tries lifting it out of the mud, but his super strength is gone... and then it suddenly comes back, and he accidentally launches the tractor into the stratosphere. Some distance away, Perry is walking along, when a tractor falls out of the sky, smashing spectacularly into the road. He takes his flask and pours it out on the ground.
- On an episode of Jackass, Wee Man is dressed up as an Oompa Loompa while riding around on a skateboard. He skates past a stoner smoking a blunt. The smoker's reaction is a blank stare while exhaling.
- In one episode of Bewitched, Samantha is trying art as a new hobby, and is sculpting a bust of Darrin; on the same day, Darrin invites his boss—obviously an alcoholic—to their house for dinner. Serena tries to have some fun, making Samantha's low quality bust almost perfect, make one of Darrin's boss too, and make them both talk. After seeing this too much, Darrin's poor boss thinks he's hallucinating and decides to call himself a ride home, and when Samantha suggests he have a drink, he shouts, "Never again! When it goes from pink elephants to talking rocks, you know it's time to get on the wagon!" (So this was very much a Nice Job Fixing It, Villain for Serena, although Samantha and Darrin were still stuck with the two talking sculptures at the end.)
- Frontier Circus: In "Journey From Hannibal", Casey leads an elephant into the small frontier town of Medicine Pole. The town drunk staggers out of the saloon holding a bottle, looks at the elephant, and immediately smashes the bottle before staggering away.
- In the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids episode, "Honey, We've Been Swallowed by Grandpa", a motorist drinking some takeaway coffee yells at the Szalinkis for nearly colliding with his car... only to find they've suddenly shrunken out of view. The bewildered motorist then exclaims he's going "decaf".
- In the Mr. Show episode "A Talking Junkie," during the sketch of the same name—in a parody of Mr. Ed—an alcoholic (played by Paul F. Tompkins) sees the junkie talking, does a double take (as if he didn't think one could exist), then tosses away his bottle.
- Played with in an episode of Hi-de-Hi! where Mr Partridge is having a picnic when he sees a horse ridden by a pantomime horse, does a double-take and looks between his flask and a banana a few times before he throws the banana away and carries on drinking.
- One clip for The Worlds Dumbest had Mike Trainor do this.
- Lexx episode "Prime Ridge" has this with the booze-loving realtor seeing a moth parked in the garage. This being Lexx, she empties the whole bottle after some thoughts, so it probably its best described as this trope and I Need a Freaking Drink.
- A Running Gag in Sabrina the Teenage Witch has Mr Kraft try and rationalise some of the weirder things he's seen around Sabrina as something he bought and ate, usually from a dodgy source.
- The Still Standing episode "Still Parading" has a subplot about Tina, the youngest Miller, getting sick and enjoying the way her cough medicine tastes. In The Stinger, she goes to ask for more, only to see the whole family doing Irish step dancing, with older brother Brian in a full-on leprechaun costume and father Bill in a homemade version that involves boxer shorts. She quickly throws down the bottle and says "I think I've had enough!" before running from the room.
- Binary Break: When Penny first sees Capmon, he assumes her and the events of the morning are because of him somehow doing drugs.
Penny: I think D.A.R.E. was right and I got - is that mushroom talking? This is a gateway.
- The intro cinematic for Diablo II has Marius drop his pipe after seeing the Dark Wanderer burn down the inn while demons murder everybody else inside.
- Happens in Neverwinter Nights 2:
Khelgar: Just to make sure my eyes aren't lying to me—a huge suit of armor did smash through here, attack the githyanki—and us—then we drove it back to the portal?
Neeshka: No... no, that's about right.
Khelgar: Good. Because if my drinking is catching up with me, I'm stopping right now.
- In Persona 5 Strikers, when the Phantom Thieves first bring Zenkichi into the Metaverse, he immediately assumes that he drank way too much and is hallucinating. This is after the Phantom Thieves already explained everything to him. It takes several more minutes of convincing for him to even begin to believe he's not crazy.
- In Spellcasting 201, as part of the initiation trials of the Hu Delta Phart fraternity, you have to break into the basement of the Tappa Kegga Bru fraternity and steal their mascot... an elephant. After seeing the elephant get magically shrunk down until it can fit down the manhole cover, and the manhole cover float off the ground, the guard throws away his beer (Why he doesn't realize that this means magic is involved, when he's in a school for magic, is never mentioned. Maybe he's just too drunk to think about that). Then he rethinks things, and picks the mug up again.
- One of the standard enemy reactions to catching a glimpse of Garret in Thief: Deadly Shadows is "I need to take it easy with the wine..."
- Similarly in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim enemies frequently mutter about needing to cut down on the ale after they leave the "alert" status. Hearing it enough times will make it feel like everyone in Tamriel is an alcoholic.
- In Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty!, one of the potential comments a Slig guard will make when hearing a sound without knowing where it came from is, "I think I'm hearing things, I better back off those Scrab Cakes".
- Invoked in one of the thought fragments of The World Ends with You:
I thought I saw someone with wings the other day... No more caffeine.
- Happens in World of Warcraft during the quest "Swabbin' Soap". After retrieving the soap in question(in this case, walrus blubber), a Gnome mage conjures a bunch of animate brooms to swab the deck. Cue a nearby pirate saying "That's it... no more grog for me!" and throwing his bottle of grog overboard.
- In episode 10 of Retarded Animal Babies, the cast get sucked into the Internet and wind up at the beginning of their own cartoon. Donkey, who at the time had been smoking a blunt (well, there was one in his mouth anyway), tosses it aside when he sees himself standing before him.
- The Team Fortress 2 SFM "Texas Style" has a moment when Blue Demoman looks into his bottle at the sight of all the people dancing Texas-style.
- In this No Need for Bushido webcomic the guy in purple had just "killed" Yorikiro and left him for dead. He pours out his drink when Yorikiro comes in later uninjured and gets Ken.
- Used in F@NB0Y$ to Chess after seeing three people and a couch teleport into his living room.
- Used as a Brick Joke in Schlock Mercenary. Earlier, a character had announced a desire to find some Brain Bleach. A bit later he came across Kevin and Schlock chasing a sentient toaster through the hall. He wonders if maybe he got a little too enthusiastic with the Brain Bleach.
- In Penny and Aggie, Aggie's father Nick, upon seeing his daughter enter the house while chatting amicably with her longtime rival Penny (the two of them having just buried the hatchet), looks quizzically at his cup of coffee.
- El Goonish Shive:
- Grace has previously asked the local squirrels for directions to Damien's hideout (Grace being a half-squirrel hybrid, it's halfway plausible). Nanase has to catch up to the group in her miniature winged fairy form and flies up to a tree branch and asks a squirrel for directions. The squirrel looks at her, looks at his acorn, and then chucks it over his shoulder.
- After his drinking buddies encounter what they believe to be a ghost, one man decides that "Maybe we shouldn't be drinking tonight." His friends come to the opposite conclusion. "I need a drink after that."
- Subverted in Latchkey Kingdom, where the castle witch Svanhildur, tripping on shrooms, sees something weird. However, since Willa saw it too and didn't eat any, Svanhildur concludes that the shrooms are not the cause of the hallucination, so she can keep eating them.
- Two variations appear in The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob! — One of the first humans to ever get a look at fuzzy pink Molly the Monster is a rocket base security guard, who immediately resolves to finally contact Alcoholics Anonymous. Much later, after seeing Molly and the four ninjas spontaneously burst into tears over their milkshakes (because the ninjas have just realized that everyone from their time period is dead), Heywood decides to order something different.
- In Mac Hall, while at a party, Matt sees Drew go running past with a Crocodile Hunter Expy on his back, then eyes his drink and thinks to himself "I knew I couldn't trust that bartender."
- Champions of Far'aus: When Dave the highwayman asks a stranger if she's seen his holy bone "R" (a bone with the letter "R" engraved into it, indirectly given to him by the godess Leilusa as a joke), she stares at him silently, then pulls out a bottle and lets it smash on the ground beside her.
- In Sandra and Woo hearing a talking racoon kit causes Richard to pour out his alcohol.
- Happens with beauty products in Neolithic Cross-Time Cafe when Florence and Jenny see Kathy the hyena transformed into a blonde bunny bimbo.
Florence: You know, Jen, I was thinking about a makeover. A little trim, maybe some nail inlays, what do you think?
Jenny: I know what you mean, I've been thinking some tinting and frosting!
Kathy: Pony! Pony, where are you! I want to look like a hyena again! POOONNEEEEEE!!!!
Florence: Brunette. Brunette is good.
Jenny: I'm going back to my room and throwing out every bottle I own.
- The Nostalgia Critic spends his review of IT playing the 'Stephen King Drinking Game' and getting steadily more wasted. However, when Stan's head appears in the fridge and starts talking, all he can do is stare in disbelief and throw away his bottle of Knob Creek.
- During the 11/28/2010 session of Spoony's Campaign, Spoony surprises everyone by showing off his new headset's voice changer function without warning, suddenly busting out a robotic voice mask. After the laughter calms down, Sean Fausz says "Now I see why people stop drinking! Jeez! I'm done for the night!"
- In the middle of Episode 36 of Kurt J Mac's Far Lands or Bust series, Kurt mentions that he's having a snifter of bourbon while playing, as a tribute to "National Bourbon Day". At the end of the episode, he discovers the "Hidey Hole Paradox" for the first time, which prompts him to set the bourbon aside.
- In the Amphibia episode "Friend or Frobo", Polly's new Robot Buddy uses its Super-Strength and extendable arms to lift Stumpy's restaurant high into the air. When One-Eyed Wally glances out the window and a literal flying fish passes by, he spits out his drink and declares, "No more for me, thanks."
- Biker Mice from Mars: In the 2006 revival series episode "Changes", a bum has this reaction upon witnessing Stoker's transformation.
- In the early Van Beuren Studios sound cartoon "Dinnertime", a dog with a bottle of beer has this reaction when he sees a cat climb into the air to collect its lost nine lives. He throws the bottle down and runs off in fear!
- The Flintstones:
- In one episode, Barney hurts his foot and has to scream into a nearby mail box to conceal it. Soon after, a mailman opens the mail box and gets a loud scream right in his face, and then he remarks "I gotta stop eating at those cheap restaurants." This joke occurs several times on the show.
- In "Ten Little Flintstones", Dino sees ten identical copies of Fred walk through the Flintstones' yard and reacts by sniffing his bowl of dino food, upending it in disgust, and running to hide in his doghouse.
- The Gandy Goose short "Fisherman's Luck" has a gag where a drunk lobster tosses away his booze bottle after seeing some pink elephant fish.
- When Oberon enters New York, with gargoyle beast Boudicca on a leash, to hunt down the missing Puck, a passing jogger spots him emerging from the glowing portal. A split second later, Oberon and his hound are disguised as a white-haired man in a trenchcoat who is out walking his dog. The jogger stares at him for a moment, then pours out the contents of his water-flask. (Said jogger was a bit of a running gag in the series — he's one of its many examples of Yuppie Couple — and would often pass by the gargoyles after sunrise, to comment on "those strange statues.")
- After seeing Brooklyn escape arrest on his motorcycle (and opening his wings), Officer Morgan swears off sugar and throws away the donuts that he and Phil Travanti had been eating earlier.
- In Gravity Falls episode "The Love God", Dipper and Mabel are fleeing from the eponymous god, a cherub who looks and dresses like a tubby hippie. When the Love God starts using his tiny wings to fly, a bystander sees this, then pours out the bottle of "Hippie Tea" he was drinking with a disapproving look on his face.
- In The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy episode "Grim for a Day", Billy and Grim switch places for the day, only to find that it's literally turning them into each other. When Mandy sees the end results, she says "I need to stop drinking steak sauce."
- Johnny Test:
- In one episode, Johnny convinces a store clerk that Dukey's presence in the building isn't real, but just a hallucination. Dukey helps this along by talking. The clerk pours out his coffee.
- In another episode, two cops see Johnny, Dukey, and Bling-Bling Boy (All transformed into babies) drive by in motorized baby carriages. They also pour out their coffee.
- Looney Tunes examples:
- In "Water, Water Every Hare", Bugs Bunny pours reducing oil on Gossamer, causing the monster to shrink. Gossamer enters a mousehole, kicks out the mouse, and puts out a sign that reads "I quit!" The mouse then takes out a bottle and says, "I quit, too!"
- Subverted in the Chuck Jones short "Punch Trunk": a four-inch-tall elephant had been making its way around town, causing much freaking out. When said elephant encounters a drunk shambling out of a bar, the drunk does a Double Take, then simply glares at his watch and mutters to the elephant "You're late!". As he shuffles away, the drunk adds to himself "He always used to be pink..."
- Similar to the Goodies example above, a man just leaving the optometrist with new glasses sees the tiny elephant, goes back into the shop— and we hear a whump!. The man storms out without his glasses while the bewildered optometrist leans out the door of the shop— with a black eye.
- In one cartoon starring Hippety Hopper (the baby kangaroo Sylvester keeps confusing for a giant mouse), a man sees Hippety jumping down the street; while still in his shipping crate, throws away a flask from his coat pocket and hastily walks away.
- Another Hippety cartoon "Hop, Look and Listen" has the house bulldog telling Sylvester he'll take care of the mouse himself. But when he sees Hippety in his mother's pouch, he freaks out:
Bulldog: (After packing up his doghouse) Come on, cat...let's get outta here! When ya sees mice that big with two heads, it's time ta get on da water wagon! (he and Sylvester with packed grips sit atop a water truck)
- A variation: in another cartoon "Rabbit Seasoning", as Bugs and Daffy hide from Elmer Fudd in the former's rabbit hole, Daffy gets shot in the face after peeking his head out of the hole to see if Elmer is "still lurking about". Bugs suggests that Daffy should act as a decoy and lure Elmer away, to which Daffy dazedly mumbles a non-sequitur response, "No more for me, thanks, I'm drivin'...", and then passes out.
- In Hobo Bobo, a baby elephant named Bobo wants to go to America, but can't sneak onto the boat. A myna birds suggests he paint himself pink, as no one will admit to seeing a pink elephant. Sure enough, Bobo is persistently ignored, complete with drink pouring, which becomes a problem when he tries to get help in joining the circus.
- In another one, "Mouse Wreckers", Hubie and Bertie use a number of tricks to drive house cat Claude crazy - after one early one, Claude grabs a stepladder, climbs up to a ceiling light fixture, fishes out a bottle of "Cat Nip", hurls it out the window, and recites a pledge.
- From "Hare Way to the Stars":
Bugs: Gad...what a night. I'll never mix radish juice and carrot juice again!
- "A Taste of Catnip" has a bulldog scaring Daffy, who is having delusions of thinking he's a cat. When the bulldog sees Daffy meowing and hissing, he throws a bottle of alcohol away.
- On Mission Hill:
- Due to an incredibly complicated series of events, a snake passes by Jim making what sounds like baby noises (they are... again, complicated). He looks at the brownie he's eating (which he found "on the subway") and is very pleased with it.
Jim: *Beat* Can you believe someone left these brownies on the subway?
- On "Plan 9 From Mission Hill (or I Married A Gay Man from Outer Space)," Gwen and Andy are staring in shock at Wally's B-movie while eating popcorn. Gwen comments that someone must have put drugs in the popcorn. Andy looks at it, and begins shoveling the popcorn down faster.
- Due to an incredibly complicated series of events, a snake passes by Jim making what sounds like baby noises (they are... again, complicated). He looks at the brownie he's eating (which he found "on the subway") and is very pleased with it.
- In the cartoon "Pink Pajamas", a man that wants to quit alcohol and calls his A.A. sponsor to help him, all because he saw The Pink Panther.
- A background gag in Rick and Morty episode "Close Rick-counters of the Rick kind", while on the run in a dimension populated by living furniture (who sit on people, and order phones with pizzas), Rick and Morty pass by an apparently homeless armchair drinking booze (out of a truck in a paper bag). When he sees them walking around and talking to each other, he looks freaked out and pours it out. Throughout this scene, the other residents of this world are staring at them as well, until they get to a restaurant.
- The Simpsons:
- In a clip of a Stylistic Suck children's show, a cat sees something astonishing, rubs its eyes, and bats away a small bag labeled "catnip."
- In "Jaws Wired Shut," Maggie reacts to a gay dog parade by tossing her bottle away.
- One episode has a drunk in a gutter throw away his bottle in disbelief after seeing a space ship (actually a model rocket Homer just launched), only for it to be caught by a passing businessman. He promptly throws away his briefcase and lies in the gutter drinking the remaining contents.
Businessman: Hey! Wine!
- At one time, Barney drank a bottle of organic juice which Homer had accidentally made with peyote and began seeing a monster. He promptly got out a drink of alcohol, so that a more familiar Pink Elephant appeared and stepped on the monster, killing it. Barney's crazy all right, but he knows it well enough to choose to stick with the version produced by his current addiction (alcohol).
Barney: Thanks Pinkie! You've always been there for me!
- Another episode takes this trope to the extreme with Cletus, his pregnant wife, their children and their unborn child throwing away their bottles of alcohol in quick succession after seeing a bizarre train (actually the personal train of Lady Gaga).
- A variation occurs when Bart gets a fake I.D. and uses it to buy Milhouse, Nelson, and himself some beers at Moe's. Before they drink them, they notice Barney and the other drunks acting like fools, which causes them to push the beers away and leave.
- In the animated adaptation of Raymond Briggs' The Snowman, when the boy and the Snowman fly from England to the North Pole, they pass a cruise ship whose passengers are in the middle of a Christmas party. A reveler with a paper jesters hat on his head sees them through the window, gasps, and then gapes in confusion at the bottle of spirits in his hand. Amusingly, he's one of only two people who see the Snowman and the Boy flying, the other being a little girl who's up waiting for Santa.
- In the SpongeBob SquarePants episode "SquidBob TentaclePants", Squidward and SpongeBob get fused together as a result of one of Sandy's experiments. After seeing them ride into the Krusty Krab on Squidward's bike, a fish exclaims "I gotta lay off the hot sauce", and puts down his food.
- Star Wars Resistance: In "No Escape, Part I", Al, drinking in Aunt Z's Tavern, sees Kaz and CB-23 swim past the windows, prompting him to stop and stare at his drink. When he sees them come back, pursued by two scuba troopers, he tells Glitch that he's had enough.
- Played for laughs in the Tom and Jerry cartoon The Flying Sorceress: Jerry's sitting at a window, eating a hunk of cheese, when he glances outside and sees Tom apparently flying under his own power (he stole a witch's broom). He pulls a Double Take, looks with wide eyes toward the audience, then looks at the cheese and promptly flings it away.
- Some of the spectacular visual effects from Inception were created in Real Life, rather than relying in CGI. Before filming started one day, a bum walked onto the blocked-off street being used as a set, and asked one of the producers if there was really a freight train in the middle of the street. When the producer answered in the affirmative, the bum decided that maybe he was drinking too much.
- Seeing Will Smith get off his seat to slap Chris Rock on stage had this reaction on the 2022 Academy Awards Ceremony, according to one of the bartenders.