"I just wanna see the scene where Bruce has to explain his goddamn expense report!"
— Noah Antwilter, The Clones of Bruce Lee review
When the past events of the episode or series are revisited via a looking over of damages and expenses. In short, a common Framing Device for a Clip Show. Often played for laughs.
Compare Captain's Log, which revisits events through a more general report.
Anime & Manga
- Excel♡Saga: In one episode, Il Palazzo justifies his decision not to include Excel in the current mission by showing her a Clip Show of all her mission failures from previous episodes.
- Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon: A few episodes have Lilie recap the events of the previous one while writing in her diary.
- The Runaway: Runs off with Gladion to the Altar of the Sunne on Poni Island in an attempt to save their mother.
- Speed Grapher: Used explicitly in the episode "Audit the Wicked".
- The Avengers: The story "Lo! And There Shall Come an Accounting!" was about this. In the end, the money counters let the superheroes off the hook. Who's going to rag on Captain America for saving them?
Film — Live-Action
- Slumdog Millionaire: The accounting is not of expenses, but of the main character's life experiences that led to his presence on a quiz show, and his knowledge of esoteric answers despite a dirt-poor childhood.
- Heechee Saga by Frederik Pohl: In the "present", the hero is obscenely wealthy, plagued by guilt, and going through therapy with a computer-generated psychologist. Most of the actual plot of the book is in his explanations to the computer of where the wealth (and guilt) came from.
- Vorkosigan Saga: Borders of Infinity by Lois McMaster Bujold is actually a thinly disguised short story collection, with an audit as a framing device for the stories.
"Illyria destroyed 11 torture units before she found your man; 2 troop carriers, an ice cream truck, and 8 beautifully maintained lawns."
- "Bachelor Party": Doyle asks Angel to snoop around his ex-wife's new fiancée, leading to an awkward scene where Angel spots the beau with a knife and tackles him through a plate-glass window. The next day, Angel grouses that Richard belongs to a family of harmless restauranteurs "with some pretty expensive windows."
- "Time Bomb": The episode has a suit, Marcus Hamilton, reading off a list of damages caused by Angel's flunky during a rescue mission.
- Hunter (1984): Da Chief does this about an offscreen car chase, before deciding to get Hunter and Dee Dee new partners.
- JAG: In "Soul Searching", Harm and Bud go over the budget request for the office in which it appears that Harm's firing of an H&K in the courtroom (two seasons earlier in "Heroes") has caused structural damage to the roof. Through clever lawyering, Bud makes the outstanding expense go away under a building health plan.
- Malcolm in the Middle: One episode used the parents going over their finances and strange expenditures to frame a clip show. For instance, "When did we spend so much on sequins?" transitioned to Bryan Cranston's roller dancing scene.
- Night Court did this plot once.
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: "Trials and Tribble-ations" is told via flashback as Sisko explains what happened to the Department of Temporal Investigations.
- Stargate SG-1: The Clip Show episodes.
- "Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar": This radio drama used this as the show format. Each of Johnny's adventures was narrated as he went down the list filling out his expense report.
- Bounty Hamster: In "The Trial", the final episode to be produced, Marion has to face a licensing tribunal when he's accused of conduct unbecoming his bounty hunter license. Cue Clip Show. (In the end, the tribunal does strip him of his license — and awards one to Cassie, having concluded that she's done more to earn one over the course of the series than Marion has.)
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars: In "Storm Over Ryloth", mid-way through Anakin has to recount the losses from the failed first attempt to break the Separatist blockade over Ryloth to Mace Windu and Obi-Wan Kenobi, which hammers home just how much of his fleet he's lost.
- Transformers: Rescue Bots:
- In two-parters, Huxley Prescott often recaps the events of part one as part of his news show.
- In "The More Things Stay the Same", Quickshadow recaps the events of "The More Things Change..." in the context of it being a report to Optimus.
- In "Today and Forever", Frankie convinces Cody to document the situation due to the absurdity of it. To recap, Griffin Rock was teleported to the North Pole after a large active teleportation crystal accidentally was dropped onto the island's underground Reactaline veins.