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Recap by Audit

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"I just wanna see the scene where Bruce has to explain his goddamn expense report!"

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.


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     Anime and Manga  

  • Used explictly in the anime Speed Grapher episode "Audit the Wicked".
  • In one episode of Excel Saga, Il Palazzo justifies his decision not to include Excel on the current mission by showing her a Clip Show of all her mission failures from previous episodes.

     Comic Books  

  • The Avengers has done this a few times. The story "Lo! And There Shall Come an Accounting!" was about this. In the end, the money-counters let the super-heroes off the hook. Who's going to rag on Captain America for saving them?


  • Played with in Slumdog Millionaire, where 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.


  • Gateway by Frederik Pohl does this; 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.
  • The book Borders of Infinity by Lois McMaster Bujold is actually a thinly disguised short story collection, with an audit as framing device for the stories.

     Live Action TV  

  • Night Court did this plot once.
  • The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "Trials and Tribble-ations" is told via flashback as Sisko explains what happened to the Department of Temporal Investigations.
  • The Clip Show episodes of Stargate SG-1.
  • Angel:
    • 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 a harmless restauranteurs "with some pretty expensive windows."
    • The episode "Time Bomb" had a suit, Marcus Hamilton, reading off a list of damages caused by Angel's flunky during a rescue mission.
    "Illyria destroyed 11 torture units before she found your man; 2 troop carriers, an ice cream truck, and 8 beautifully maintained lawns."
  • JAG: In "Soul Searching", Harm and Bud goes 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 a structural damage to the roof. Through clever lawyering, Bud makes the outstanding expense go away under a building health plan.
  • Hunter. Da Chief does this about an offscreen car chase, before deciding to get Hunter and Dee Dee new partners.


  • The radio drama "Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar" used this as the show format. Each of Johnny's adventures was narrated as he went down the list filling out his expense report.

    Western Animation 
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars, "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.


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