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Rudely Hanging Up

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Councilor Tevos: Do not cut me off again, Commander. I fail to find it amusing.
Commander Shepard: (hangs up on the Council) Whoops.

It can be hard to get out of a face-to-face conversation, but getting out of a telephone conversation is as easy as hanging up. Of course, this is generally considered rude, and as such it can be tremendously funny to watch the frustrated reaction of the person who was hung up on. More rarely, the camera follows the person doing the hanging-up.

May be followed by a Phoney Call if the person on the receiving end is surrounded by other people and tries to pretend the conversation is still going on.

Compare TV Telephone Etiquette, where nobody says "goodbye" at the end of a call, and Fake Static, in which one of the characters pretends that they can't hear the other person due to static on the line, then hangs up.


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  • In one of the Peggy advertisements for Discover card, a man calls up the support for his credit company, USA Prime Credit, and gets Peggy. He tells Peggy that his card now has a $35 annual fee and pleads with him to tell him that it's a mistake. Peggy just keeps replying with a vague "yes" and then simply hangs up.

    Anime & Manga 
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
    • Golden Wind: Ghiaccio is prone to doing this, he's extremely emotional, expressive, and prone to going on angry rants without any provocation and furiously hangs on Melone moments after he gets killed.
    • Stone Ocean: When contacting the Speedwagon Foundation for a way to extract Jotaro's Stand disc out of the prison, the agent in contact with Jolyne hastily tells her to head to the courtyard and look for "Savage Garden" before immediately hanging up. Justified, due to the prison phone calls being recorded at the time.
  • Lycoris Recoil: Majima immediately hangs up on Robota's first attempt to contact him, though the two end up working together in the end.

    Fan Works 
  • Bait and Switch (STO):
    • In "Frostbite", Dalsh Ruul has taken Tess and most of her away team prisoner and tries to bargain with them as hostages after Eleya blows up the Breens' ship in orbit. Ruul is trying to stall for time so his men can set up transporter scramblers, but:
      Eleya: Breen commander, this is Captain Kanril Eleya of the Federation Starship Bajor. Release your prisoners immediately and surrender.
      Ruul: Kanril Eleya. I have heard that name before, in intelligence briefings. Since you have apparently destroyed my ship, you will provide my men and I with a shuttle—
      Eleya: Wrong answer.
      Ruul: (to Tess) She hung up on me.
      Breen soldier: Dalsh Ruul! Transporter signatures!
    • Didn't Expect That: The Albino demands Eleya's surrender. Eleya tells him to go screw himself in Romulan, and the communications officer hangs up without waiting for further instruction.
  • In the Real Time Fan Dub of Sonic Adventure 2, Shadow and Rouge are in a conversation where the former talks about how Eggman's dick is shaped like every tetris block at once as a means of discouraging Rouge from sending out photos of Eggman's dick. This while on the ARK, which Eggman has clear monitoring throughout.
    Shadow: Yeah, piss off. (hangs up)

    Film — Animated 
  • In The Iron Giant, Kent calls General Rogard about the giant robot he thinks is roaming the town. Rogard, upset that Kent called him at home for a non-emergency, tells him that he first needs evidence to send troops, and while Kent raves about it, he calmly hangs up on him in mid-rant. Kent doesn't take this well. The fact that he twice fails to put the phone back properly doesn't help.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • Alexander Knox in Batman (1989) is trying to interview someone, as the Joker's deadly antics start ramping up. The target of his questions hangs up on him. He then stares in faux-astonishment and declares, "...they. Hung. Up!"
  • Happens a few times in the Danish Police Procedural The Guilty (which is told from inside an emergency services dispatch center, meaning that it basically all plays out over the telephone), such as when Asger reveals to Michael that he knows that he had done time in prison.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • In Avengers: Age of Ultron, the arms dealer Ulysses Klaue is introduced shouting at a business contact who had sent him a shipment of bad parts, before slamming the phone down and switching to another caller.
    Klaue: You pay your account in full by this time next week, or the next missile I send you will come very much faster! *hangs up, picks up other line* Now, Minister, where were we?
    • Spider-Man: Homecoming: After Peter discovers The Vulture's scheme, he instructs Ned to contact Happy and tell him the situation, but at that point, Happy had become annoyed with Peter for disobeying Tony and immediately hangs up once he gets called.
  • The Negotiator: After Roman executes a hostage and calls the negotiator for his next demands, Sabian hangs up the phone on him several times even though Roman still has hostages, both to signal his anger and to make it clear that he will refuse further negotiations if people get hurt.
  • The Queen: Done by none other than the Queen herself. When the prime minister is desperately trying to persuade her to make a public appearance following the death of Diana, he says "let's keep in touch, shall we?" She replies abruptly "Yes. Let's.", and slams the phone down.
  • Happens early on in Sweet Smell of Success, when a client of the hero expresses dissatisfaction with the work done for him and hangs up.
  • V for Vendetta has a brief scene of Lewis Prothero yelling at his producer over the phone while watching his own show, telling him to fire the cameraman because his nose looks too big or else Prothero will fire him. He then hangs up the phone without waiting for an answer.
  • The Rock: General Hummel does this during all his interactions with the FBI.
    Womack: I wanna know who I'm speaking with.
    Hummel: This is Brigadier General Francis X. Hummel, United States Marine Corps, from Alcatraz. OUT.
  • John Wick has Viggo calling John to apologize for his son stealing John's car, beating him, and killing his dog. John not only doesn't say a single word during the call, he hangs up on Viggo mid-sentence.

  • A Volcano in My Tummy: In the story "Craig's Angry Day", Craig slams the phone down hard after getting into an argument with his father, prompting his mother to reprimand him for it.
  • Aeon 14: Destiny Lost and Set the Galaxy on Fire. See Tanis Richards argue with Bollam's World Admiral Senya. See Senya start ranting at her. See Tanis close the channel in mid-sentence.
  • The Famous Five: Uncle Quentin does this to Julian in Five Run Away Together, when Julian is desperately trying to persuade Uncle Quentin to get rid of the unpleasant housekeeper, Mrs Stick.
    "But sir," said Julian, wondering how in the world to deal with his hot-tempered uncle, "I must tell you that..."
    There was a click at the other end of the phone. Uncle Quentin had put down his receiver and gone. There was no more to be said.
    "He's gone!" said Julian. "Cut me off just when I was trying to reason with him."
    "Serves you right!" came Mrs Stick's harsh voice.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: During Skye, Fitz, and Simmons' first stakeout, Skye called Ward with questions about going to the bathroom, where the snacks are, until a fed up Ward ends the call.
  • In the final season of Boardwalk Empire, Nucky's men kidnap Benny Siegel with plans to hold him hostage to use against Lucky Luciano and Meyer Lansky. When they call Luciano to inform him, though, Luciano and company assume Benny is off doing one of his typical crazy, stupid things like hooking up with a new girl in the middle of a Mob War. So Luciano assumes the worst when he gets on the phone, starts talking right over Siegel's attempts to explain, chews Siegel out, and tells him to stop being a dumbass before hanging up on him. It's only when they call back and Nucky is the one to talk that Luciano starts to listen.
  • In the Burn Notice pilot episode, Michael is trying to find out from his old handler how and why he got burned, and the secretary on the other end refuses to patch him through.
    Michael: Please, we trained together. There's a lucite plaque on his desk with a bullet hole in it. He drinks Sprite. He's a friend.
    Secretary: Sir, I can't help.
    Michael: No, no, don't hang up on me! Oh, you hung up on me!
  • Elementary: Joan Watson walks in on Sherlock Holmes angrily hanging up on someone and using an old-school rotary phone to do it. Sherlock admits that, having made a series of increasingly irritating phone calls that day, he dug out the phone so that he could hang up with more emphasis.
  • In the series Murdoch Mysteries, Inspector Brackenreid will occasionally get out of awkward phone conversations by hanging up, sometimes preceded by his jiggling the hook and loudly claiming to have a bad connection. Recipients of this tactic include his wife and Chief Constable Stockton (one suspects Stockton's successor Percival Giles wouldn't fall for this).
  • In one of the comedy sketches that open Seinfeld, Jerry talks about how difficult it is to do this with a cell phone. He acts out a bit where someone tries to hang up rudely with a cell phone by pulling it away from his ear, searching for the "end" button, and pressing it. "I guess I showed him!"
  • In the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Ensigns of Command", after being berated all epsiode by the Sheliak, a race whose hat is Bothering by the Book and who have been insistently invoking the exact wording of their very long peace treaty with the Federation to claim a planet in three days that will take three weeks to evacuate the human population, Picard exploits a loophole that would delay their plans by six months. He then hangs up on them and strolls about the bridge for a minute when they call back. To be fair, they had hung up on him several times previously during the episode.
    Riker: You enjoyed that.
    Picard: You're damn right.
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Our introduction to Major Kira involves her arguing on the Video Phone with someone in the Bajoran Provisional Government, and then slamming her hand down on the touchscreen on the table to end the conversation.
  • Star Trek: Voyager: In "Caretaker"'s Action Prologue, Gul Evek hails the Maquis ship Val Jean and gets about as far as introducing himself before Chakotay hangs up on him in the middle of his surrender demand.
  • NCIS: Mobster threatens Gibbs over the phone, is nonplussed when the threat backfires.
    Mobster: ...I'll kill your brothers, your uncles, your father. And after their funerals, I'll kill you.
    Gibbs: No brothers, no uncles, my father passed years ago. I do have three ex-wives, whose names and addresses I will gladly fax on to you... Huh. He hung up.note 
  • Thunderbirds: In "End of the Road", Eddie Houseman does this when his boss is pleading with him over the radio not to proceed with a reckless and highly dangerous job involving explosives. However, Eddie has to swallow his pride minutes later, as the explosion places him in an extremely perilous situation, from which he has to be rescued.

  • "Disasterpiece" by Slipknot ends with a phone loudly being tossed back onto the cradle, as if to imply the entire Angrish rant that was the song was being screamed into somebody's ear.

    Puppet Shows 
  • This was a common endpoint for the prank calls on Crank Yankers as whoever was on the other end finally had enough of the craziness and simply chose to end the call.
  • Sir Gregory in The Men from the Ministry ends most of his phone-calls into the General Assistance Department by hanging up on One whenever he's halfway through his sentence.

    Stand-Up Comedy 
  • Jeff Dunham has a sketch where Grumpy Old Man Walter complains about his wife calling back right after he hangs up on her:
    Walter's wife: Did you just hang up on me?!
    Walter: I dunno, did it sound something like this!? *click*

    Video Games 
  • In Sound Mind: A mysterious stalker will occasionally call Desmond to taunt and mock him, trying to play on his insecurities and doubts. There's nothing stopping Desmond from hanging up on him mid-sentence as a form of Shut Up, Hannibal!, and doing so even unlocks the "Nope" achievement.
  • Mass Effect:
    Tevos: Commander, is this some kind of game? Are you calling in a report just so you can cut us off again?
    Shepard: You know it! (click)
    Joker: That never gets old, does it?
    • Mass Effect 3: In a Continuity Nod to the first game, Joker at one point suggests calling the Council so you can hang up on them again.
    • Mass Effect: Andromeda continues the tradition in Liam's loyalty mission. Early in the mission, the self-important Monster of the Week calls into the cargo bay you're in a couple times, and you're offered quick time events to disconnect the call. The second time, you're in the middle of arguing with Liam about how badly-planned the mission is, and you just shoot the console with whatever gun you have equipped when the villain calls and keep yelling at ​Liam without missing a beat. The villain subsequently starts ranting over the intercom about how he's going to kill everyone who disrespected him, which he doesn't do without the interrupts.
  • Persona 5: Principal Kobayakawa is usually on the receiving end of this from his superior, the SIU Director, who immediately hangs up on him mid-sentence due to his incompetence in fulfilling his request.
  • Shenmue: If Ryo doesn't answer the phone riddle correctly with the right phrases, the person on the other line immediately hangs up.
  • StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty: When Prince Valerian pointedly doesn't answer Jim Raynor's question as to why he'd help them, Jim cuts the communication, waits for a few seconds, then turns it back on.
    Valerian: I can see why my father wants to kill you.

    Web Videos 
  • Kitboga is a popular scambaiter on Twitch and YouTube. This is the typical ultimate endpoint of any call once the scammers realize just how badly their time has been wasted. The trick is how long they can be kept on the line before then. Additionally, Kitboga loves doing this himself to scammers because it drives them nuts. One of the things scammers try to insist on is that their potential victim remain on the line with them until everything is completed. Any time spent off the phone with them is time potentially outside their control in which somebody could be convincing their victim that they're being scammed. Of course, the risk is also there that the scammer will catch on or give up and either won't call back or won't take a call-back. Therefore, Kitboga usually only does this after the scammer has been well and truly baited into expecting a big payday.

    Western Animation 
  • Aqua Teen Hunger Force: In "Creature from Plaque Lagoon", Shake tries to contact a dentist for assistance after his teeth were stolen. Upon insulting the dentist's wife, he gets quickly hung up.
  • Batman: The Animated Series: In "The Cape and Cowl Conspiracy", Wacklaw Joserk (or rather Batman) hangs up on Wormwood just as he was reminding Joserk to explain why he wants Batman's cape and cowl.
  • Castlevania: In the fourth season, Varney of London, a member of Dracula's court whom others regard as a nuisance, tries to rope the forgemaster Isaac into helping him resurrect Dracula via a magic mirror. Isaac is not interested, as he is trying to complete his own task.
    Isaac: Sir Mirror, do not allow this one to call me again...and go to sleep.
    Varney: Fuck you! (call ended)
  • In one Donald Duck cartoon, he and Daisy have an argument over the phone. She hangs up so hard, the phone booth Donald's in explodes.
  • In the Futurama movie The Beast with a Billion Backs, Hermes is instructed by Professor Farnsworth to hang up on Wernstrom in "the most rude way possible". Apparently, this is defined in the 31st century, as Hermes pulls his pants down and uses his buttcrack to hold and slam down the phone. Wernstrom is able to watch (video phone) and can only protest before being hung up on.
    Wernstrom: No, not the crackslam! (call ended)
  • In the Star Wars: The Clone Wars episode, "Lair of Grievous", General Grievous discovers Count Dooku had sabotaged his security and let the Jedi into his home to reassess his effectiveness against the Jedi thanks to his lackluster performance in prior episodes. Grievous, who'd been jumped in his own home, lost his legs, and his pet in Dooku's "test", is understandably more than a little pissed and hangs up on him. He even throws an insincere "Oops" at the end.


Video Example(s):


North Pole Operator

The mouse switchboard operator at the North Pole eventually runs out of patience.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (2 votes)

Example of:

Main / RudelyHangingUp

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