Follow TV Tropes


Wham Shot

Go To
It Was His Sled. No, really, it was.

A Wham Episode radically alters a Story Arc. A Wham Line is a line that radically alters a scene. A Wham Shot is the purely visual version.

An unexpected move, or even a change of expression on one of the characters, can be all that's needed to alter a scene completely. It can actually be any event that doesn't need any characters commenting it for the viewer to realise an important twist is happening. In literature or any other written narratives, the Wham Line and the Wham Shot can be the same thing. In visual media however, the Wham Line tends to be a line of dialogue. The Wham Shot is anything else that can happen to alter a scene and is visible to the viewer or reader. Like its verbal or written cousin, the Wham Shot can be part of a Wham Episode or of The Reveal. It also has to be completely unexpected.


Different from Reveal Shot as it doesn't necessarily involve moving the camera to show the surprising element, but overlapping between the two tropes can be quite frequent.

Possible special cases: Revealing Hug, Traitor Shot, Reaction Shot, The Stinger, The Gut Punch, and/or the last frame of a Staggered Zoom.

Not to be confused with Boom, Headshot!.

Warning: unmarked spoilers below


    open/close all folders 

    Anime and Manga 
  • Attack on Titan:
    • The panels where the Rogue Titan attacks another Titan over an immobile human and takes a boxing stance, indicating intelligence. Both are impossible as far as humanity's knowledge goes, as the expressions on the observers' faces show.
    • The final shot of the first season reveals a Titan encased inside the wall, raising a huge number of questions and suggesting that the Wall Cult, who preach that the walls were created by miracle and should not be tampered with, are not as delusional as they'd seemed.
  • Bleach:
    • When Aizen is revealed to be alive to his loyal lieutenant and the audience at the same time, an overwhelmed Hinamori hugs him and bursts into tears. Aizen gently apologies for having caused her so much pain and thanks her for being such a reliable lieutenant...before ending his speech with the word "goodbye" and the sight of him stabbing her through the chest...revealing him to be the Big Bad.
    • When Kon is almost killed by the Grand Fisher, who thinks he's really Ichigo(Kon, a modsoul, is inhabiting Ichigo's body while Ichigo's out fighting Hollows), Kon is Isshin, who is wearing a Shinigami uniform, sporting a zanpakutou and clearly capable of seeing ghosts.
    • Kenpachi kills Nnoitra and the usual post-battle banter kicks off between Kenpachi and Ichigo, and it looks like Ichigo and his group will now be leaving Hueco Mundo and leaving the Shinigami behind to clean up. The banter is promptly interrupted by Starrk appearing out of nowhere, kidnapping Orihime and vanishing again before Kenpachi and Ichigo can even react.
  • In Bloom Into You, during Chapter 25, Koyomi goes to an autograph session with her favorite author. Her turn comes up, at which point she's called into a separate room, and in the next panel, it's revealed that the author is a woman who uses a masculine pen name.
  • Bokurano
    • After Waku's battle, the group stands on top of Zearth. Ushiro, annoyed at Waku for yelling at the top of his lungs in triumph, gives him a light shove...and Waku then falls off the 500 meter-tall Humongous Mecha.
    • At the end of one episode of the anime, a shot showing an information file reveals that Tanaka is Ushiro's mother.
    • During Chizu's arc, as she's prepared to exact revenge on Hatagai, she hesitates as she sees her older sister, who turns out to be Hatagai's girlfriend.
  • Episode 10 of The Caligula Effect has one in the credits. Ritsu's voice actor, Chiharu Sawashiro, is listed as playing "Shingo Tachibana", a completely new character, with Ritsu nowhere to be found. This sets up the next episode's revelations on just who Ritsu is.
  • DARLING in the FRANXX:
    • At the end of episode three, we see Mitsuru bleeding and injured in the cockpit of Strelizia, revealing that the rumors surrounding Zero Two's partners being unable to ride with her more than three times before dying are true.
    • the end of episode 8, showing the prior plantation 13 parasites...who were wiped out to a man.
    • In Episode 15, an exposed Klexosaur's core reveals what's clearly a human shaped body.
    • In Episode 16, the events of the episode pass by without much drama, until the final shot where we see what looks like another klaxosaur hybrid.
  • In Death Note, this is how Light's father and the police inspector working on the Kira case are revealed to be the same person to the viewer.
  • Limit uses these in abundance to emphasize a Big Reveal. We get one in volume 5 when it's revealed that Hinata was the "murderer hiding in our midst", even though it was foreshadowed WAY early on. We also get another one in volume one right after the bus crash when Konno opens her phone and we see the pile of dead bodies behind her.
  • At the beginning of the eighth chapter of the Yu-Gi-Oh! GX manga, Sho launches an attack on his opponent's monster. When the smoke clears, it is revealed that his opponent is Judai. Shortly thereafter, it is revealed how they were forced to duel each other.
  • In the 33rd episode of Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V, Kurosaki and Sora begin their duel. The announce announced that the field chosen for them is none other than Future Metropolis Heartland, which is based off of Kurosaki's now-destroyed hometown and confirms that the Xyz Dimension is definitely linked to Zexal.
  • The Stinger of episode 10 of the animated adaptation of Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions, where Rikka, who always wears a yellow contact lens on her right eye and put an eyepatch over it as part of her "Evil Eye" gimmick, takes off her eyepatch to reveal...a perfectly-normal blue eye.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist:
  • Gintama: The moment where Utsuro's mask break and reveal his face: this of Gintoki's deceased mentor, Yoshida Shoyo.
  • Kill la Kill: When Nui Harime pulls out the scissor blade that matches Ryuko's, meaning she's the one who killed Ryuko's father.
    • When Ragyo tears out Ryuko's heart, and it's glowing with life fibers.
  • Naruto:
    • We finally see the unidentified corpse that scared the Masked Man into working with Kabuto: it's the real Uchiha Madara.
    • In the Search for Tsunade arc, there are shots of Sasuke frantically racing to get to Naruto before Itachi, who's hunting for the Nine-Tailed Fox inside Naruto, can do so. Sasuke reaches a door, seemingly that of the inn room where Naruto is staying, and knocks, while Naruto, hearing a knock on his door, gets up to answer it. The next pages show that Sasuke found the wrong room, and Naruto opens his door to see Itachi and Kisame, who have tracked him down.
    • Chapter 599. After a long flashback, we finally get to see who's Tobi. It's Obito, by the way.
    • The last page of Chapter 698 shows that Naruto and Sasuke blew each other's arm off with their final attacks.
  • Dragon Ball:
    • When Raditz first appears, it's established that he's searching for someone named Kakarot. The very last shot of his introductory appearance in both the anime and manga shows what Kakarot looks like, revealing him to be Goku when he was a baby.
    • A second one with Raditz pops up exactly one episode/chapter later, when he smacks Krillin with the "belt" around his waist, revealing it's actually a tail exactly like the one Goku had when he was a kid.
    • An awesome one occurs late in the Buu Saga where Enma-Daioh is distressed how Buu is killing everyone on Earth and decides to bring out one of the more powerful souls he kept on standby just in case things started getting too out of hand. Cue the currently dead Vegeta walking up with a smirk on his face and ready to kick some ass.
    • Another comes from the Android Saga when Bulma faxes over a picture a farmer took of one of their vehicles he found out on his property. It's Trunks' time machine only far older and covered in moss, meaning someone else came back in time with it.
    • Dragon Ball Super has one in the second opening, when a shy human-looking girl suddenly turns in a Legendary Super Saiyan.
  • The epic pan out at the end of the first episode of Now and Then, Here and There as Shu hangs from the bottom of the Hellywood, showing the immense, desolate scope of the blasted alien world he's tumbled into and how tiny and insignificant he is there. Any thoughts of this being a standard shonen adventure are gone.
  • Monster:
  • One Piece:
    • Oda loves this, and would mark such moments with the onomatopoeia Don! or Dodon! on-panel. The sheer amount of such moments may lessen the impact for some, but that doesn't stop them from being revelatory, awesome, tearjerking, heartwarming, or anything in-between.
    • Chapter 731 has one at the very end: After Luffy sees a certain mysterious man and has an epic Jaw Drop, he is later seen crying. When Zoro tries to snap him out of it and asks why he's crying, Luffy answers that he always thought that person was dead. We then get a shot of three sake cups at Ace and Whitebeard's graves, very strongly implying (if not indirectly confirming) that said person is Sabo.
    • In Sanji's backstory, he, trapped on an island with Zeff, is led to believe that Zeff has taken the majority of the food. Out of food and literally starving to death, he plans on trying to steal Zeff's stash, and cuts open the bag he thinks contains the food. Treasure then spills out, revealing that Zeff gave all the food to Sanji, and Sanji notices Zeff's missing leg, and realizes the sacrifices Zeff had made for him; Zeff actually gave him all the food supplies, then cut off his own leg and ate it. Not only that, Zeff's fighting technique was based entirely upon kicking, meaning by maiming himself he's ended his career as a pirate. This actually re-shapes Sanji's entire personality; he left home to seek his fortune, and the sight of inedible treasure next to a starving pirate who ate his own leg and gave up his ability to fight so Sanji would have a better chance at survival makes him decide that treasure is worthless, food is life, and a friend who gives you food is family.
    • Chapter 908 ends with the Five Elders, until then assumed to be the Greater Scope Villains of the entire series, bowing before a shadowy figure and calling it "Master."
    • Chapter 921 ends with a gigantic eastern dragon looming ominously over Okobore Town in Wano, with Trafalgar Law telling Luffy that it's Kaidou.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion:
    • When Homura confronts Sayaka, she realizes Sayaka shouldn't exist, and asks her who she is. Sayaka insists that she's exactly who Homura thinks she is. Cue the sky darkening and Oktavia von Seckendorff appearing in the puddle they're standing on...
    • Later on in the movie, just as the real Madoka appears to take Homura to heaven there is a very quick shot of the latter with Hidden Eyes and a Psychotic Smirk. It is a very fast and unsettling piece of foreshadowing that something is about to go horribly wrong. Then Homura grabs Madoka's hands...
    • The original series has one that takes repeat viewing after episode 10 to see: Homura's pained expression as Kyubey reach Madoka in the very first episode.
    • Much earlier in the series, there was the shot of Mami's decapitated body hanging from Charlotte's mouth.
  • Toward the end of Pokémon Origins, very few fans were surprised to see Red's Charizard Mega Evolve, as it was hinted at even in the initial trailer. However, everyone was caught completely off guard when the aforementioned Mega Evolution took place...and a completely different version of Mega Charizard appeared. This was immediately followed by the announcement that Charizard was, in fact, getting two Mega Evolutions.
  • In Saki Shinohayu -dawn of age-, Mafuka, an Idol Singer, saves Hayari from a man who is trying to harm her for calling him out on his behavior, then shows her the same trick with a mahjong tile that the woman Hayari met in the hospital showed her. Hayari then realizes that the Idol Singer she initially found somewhat annoying and the woman she admired are the same person, presumably eventually leading her to become the kind of mahjong player she is in the present story.
  • School Rumble episode 10 had Harima declaring his love for Tenma, but it was Eri by mistake.
  • Your Lie in April has few of them:
    • Kaori collapsing at the end of episode 4.
    • Kaori in the hospital AGAIN at the end of episode 13.
    • Episode 15 has the first few moments where Kaori's limbs give out again when she's walking around her house while reading sheet music. She falls on her head and opens a wound but doesn't notice it until she sees blood on her hands and sheet music and then she passes out. And then there's the last two minutes where she's walking around in the hospital and she falls and suddenly loses feeling in her legs.
    • In Episode 20 the black cat that's been around the whole series gets fatally run over and all the audience and Kousei sees is the cat lying lifelessly in a pool of its own blood.
    • Episode 22. Kaori disappearing in front of Kousei during his performance, symbolizing her death.
  • In chapter 66-3 of Rosario + Vampire, the Headmaster removes his cloak for the first time to show he's completely covered in holy locks.
  • Fairy Tail: Chapter 444. We finally see who Emperor Spriggan, the ruler of the Alvarez Empire and the apparent Arc Villain is. We then echo Makarov's reaction when it's revealed that "Emperor Spriggan" is really Zeref.
    • At the end of the Edolas arc, as a result of the Reverse Anima that Mystogan used to save the residents of Magnolia, everyone who has magic is sucked through, which means all the Exceeds and everyone from Earthland. Soon after everyone regroups, Pantherlily reveals that he found and captured someone "suspicious" and reveals his captive. She turns out to be Lisanna, which means that the Earthland Lisanna never died, but was transported to Edolas and lived as that universe's version of herself.
  • From the Evillious Chronicles franchise, the PV for Moonlit Bear reveals that the apples that Eve was carrying the entire time were crying babies, which she'd stolen from their mother.
  • In the first five minutes of Digimon Adventure tri., we see Hikari trying to wake Taichi from bed only to watch as it cuts to the main four protagonists of Digimon Adventure 02 being struck down by Alphamon.
    • Determination ends with Leomon getting killed (again) by Meicuumon and Maki smiling at the sudden Face–Heel Turn. It opens with the Village of Beginnings note  being leveled, and after a fight between Leomon and Ogremon, we see The Digimon Kaiser.
  • In episode 5 of Bakemonogatari, Senjougahara points to Hachikuji while delivering the Wham Line, "That child is invisible to me." To drive the point home, the scene cuts to a birds-eye view, showing that she's actually pointing nowhere near Hachikuji.
  • At the end of Side: Future Episode 2 of Danganronpa 3, after the sleeping drug knocks everyone out and the attacker strikes, Makoto awakens and finds Aoi seemingly stabbed in the stomach. It was actually fake.
    • Episode 4 ends with a shot of Monaca Towa controlling a robot Gekkogahara, dressed up in her Junko-esque outfit from the end of Absolute Despair Girls.
    • Episode 6 ends with Munakata's peacekeeping forces heading to Jabberwock island, with someone who looks like Hajime watching them from a dock. The final shot has a closeup of his eye, which opens to reveal a red pupil as he says "This is so boring"...the catch phrase of his other personality, Izuru.
    • Episode 8 ends with Byakuya's team accidentally triggering a bomb inside the Future Foundation base, causing the building to start sinking.
    • At the end of Episode 9, when everyone awakens, they discover Kirigiri has died due to her forbidden action. Upon investigating her bracelet, they find out the cause- she died because Makoto is still alive.
    • At the end of Episode 11, Mitarai receives a text message from Tengan. Two reasons for this being so shocking; Tengan is supposed to be dead and nobody has had phone service up until now.
    • Over in Side: Despair Episode 10, the final shot is that of Izuru, who, up to that point had shown absolutely no emotion other than vague surprise and annoyance, crying over the death of Chiaki, his pre-Death of Personality Love Interest.
  • Pokémon:
    • Ash's friendly rematch with Kalos Champion Diantha takes a very unexpected turn when Ash's Greninja completes his Super Mode transformation, "shedding" off his water cloak and flooring Diantha's Gardevoir with a single Fuuma Shuriken. The shock factor is even more obvious when the episode's previews never foreshadowed such a thing happening, when the anime has always been guilty of Trailers Always Spoil.
    • When the XY group starts parting ways, Serena's the first to go. Before she departs, she tells Ash that he is still her goal. She goes down the escalator, and this might be the last we'll be seeing of her, but...she asks for one last moment with Ash, and runs back up the escalator to Ash, and kisses him. The real (if additional) whammy is the look on the rest of the group's faces, confirming the deed.
  • The shot that changed everything for Yuri!!! on Ice fans was the scene near the end of Episode 7, in which all homoerotic subtext between Yuri and Victor becomes sheer text when Victor actually tackles and kisses Yuri on international television.
  • In Sword Art Online
    • After the battle with the Skull Reaper, Kirito becomes suspicious about Heathcliff's behavior, and, in an attempt to test a theory, attacks him, becoming the first person to reduce him below 50 percent HP. The result is that Heathcliff is protected by the system changing him into an "IMMORTAL OBJECT", revealing that he's Akihiko Kayaba, creator of the game and the one responsible for imprisoning everyone.
    • Near the end of the Mother's Rosary arc of the anime, Asuna gets a text message from Dr. Kurahashi revealing that Yuuki's condition has deteriorated.
    • In Episode 5 of the Alicization anime, Rinko's assistant Mayumi takes off her sunglasses and wig, revealing herself as Asuna, who'd enlisted Rinko's help in order to learn more about what happened to Kirito.
  • Chapter 53 of Yuuna and the Haunted Hot Springs has a huge one that involves its title, " Yuna-san When She Was Alive". With the help of another psychic, Yuna and Kogarashi finally get a glimpse of what Yuna looked like when she was alive — a disabled girl sporting miserable-looking Dull Eyes of Unhappiness.

    Comic Books 
  • Godzilla: Kingdom of Monsters showcases, not only did Godzilla survive a nuclear blast, he now has an Atomic Ray to boot.
  • Judgement Day: An astronaut was deciding whether a planet of robots was fit for membership in The Federation. He judged against them because the orange robots discriminated against the blue robots. In the final panel, he took off his helmet, revealing himself to be a black man.
  • Ex Machina tells the story of Mitchell Hundred, superhero turned Mayor of New York City. In the first issue, the world looks identical to ours despite Hundred's presence...until the last panel which shows one of the Twin Towers still standing and Hundred lamenting that he couldn't save both.
  • The Authority: The relationship between Apollo and The Midnighter is finally made explicit right before the finale of the first arc - Midnighter is desperately trying to prevent Apollo from heading out on a potentially fatal mission. The WHAM moment is not the dialogue, but the action that accompanies it - Midnighter putting his hand to Apollo's face, confirming that they are lovers.
  • Transformers: More than Meets the Eye: The Shadowplay arc, where a bunch of Autobots flash back to Optimus Prime (then Orion Pax) saving thousands of innocents from a bomb planted by the corrupt senator, and investigate a lab designed for mutilation and Mind Rape with the help of several empowered bots, an unnamed non-corrupt senator, Ratchet, Chromedome (then Tumbler), and Roller. They save the day, with Optimus bringing down the bad guys, removing the bomb, and the non-corrupt Senator being taken away by the enforcers so Roller won't be killed. In the present, the purpose of the story, to bring a patient out of a coma, fails, but he's awakened by other means. Orion meets his predecessor Zeta and we see the senator was taken away to the lab, lobotomized and given a new body with an all-too-familiar cyclops head. One worker says his name is Shockwave. The arc is really his Start of Decepticon Allegiance, even named after the procedure that turned him this way.
    • Another IDW Transformers Wham Shot appears when the last page of the GI Joe crossover reveals Unicron.
  • This is of course nowadays a Late-Arrival Spoiler thanks to Pop-Cultural Osmosis, but The Reveal that Spider-Man villain Green Goblin was Norman Osborn, a prominent member of Spidey's supporting cast, was infamously shocking at the time.
  • The final page of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (IDW) Issue #6, revealing the identity and form of the new Nightmare Moon.
    Shadowfright: Now the Elements of Harmony will be destroyed and Ponyville will be defenseless! Meet our new Queen...Nightmare Rarity!
  • At the end of The Flash storyline "The Return of Barry Allen", the last page shows that the biography "The Life Story of the Flash," which was written sometime in the future, turns out to be have written by Wally's Aunt Iris - a character that had, at the time, been dead for over a decade.
    • In the very same arc, the true identity of the Barry Allen impostor is revealed when Wally, having figured it out, confronts him with a Flash ring, and the suit "Barry" draws out of the ring is a very distinct yellow.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender comics:
    • In Avatar: The Last Airbender – The Search, when Zuko asks the Mother of Faces how to find his mother, she shows him Ursa's face and then changes it to Noriko's, signifying that Ursa changed her name and lost her memories.
    • The first part of Avatar: The Last Airbender – North and South, has one combined with a Wham Line when Sokka and Katara arrive in a bustling city that's reminiscent of the North Pole. When Sokka says "The map says this is home," you realize that it used to be his and Katara's home village.
    • Part 1 of "North and South" ends with Sokka and Katara walking in on their father, Hakoda, kissing Malina, a Northern Water Tribe woman who's helping them rebuild, indicating that they have more than a business relationship.
  • During the Onslaught story arc, Onslaught rips the Gem Of Cytorrak out of Juggernaut's armor. Onslaught says that he's been waiting for this moment "his whole life"...and a shot of the person within the Onslaught armor reveals him to be Charles Xavier.
  • Infinite Crisis #3 has one when the real (Earth-1) Lex Luthor destroys the holographic projectors that are disguising his imposter, revealing that person to be Alexander Luthor of Earth-3.
  • Judging it by the first few chapters, one might think that Alan Moore's From Hell is a generic historical conspiracy thriller about the Jack the Ripper murders...until the two shots late in the book, where we see through Gull's eyes as he glimpses a television set through a window and a steel-and-glass skyscraper in the middle of London, suddenly making it clear that his detailed mystical theories might be more than just theories.
  • The last page of Issue 2 of the Kulipari: Heritage comic shows that Lord Marmoo is Back from the Dead.
  • Speaking of Alan Moore, issue 4 of the first volume of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen features one on the very last page. Might count as something of a Genius Bonus - Professor Moriarty's physical appearance isn't quite as ingrained in pop-culture as that of his Arch-Nemesis Sherlock Holmes, but it's a still dead ringer for Sidney Paget's original illustrations of him, and the Wham Line "It's James. Call me James" just cements it.
  • The final page of Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps Special. We see the inner circle of the Sinestro Corps for the first time, and it's a who's who of DC's worst Crisis Crossover villains. The biggest wham of all is that, despite the name, Sinestro is not the leader of the Corps. It's the Anti-Monitor, back after twenty years.
  • Issue 4 of The Bad Eggs reveals on the final page that Ript's "Lucky Star" is a giant asteroid heading straight for earth.
  • Circles: When Doug breaks up with Linda, she cries and drops her wedding book on the floor and the next shot reveals a tested positive pregnancy test next to the book.
  • Thunderbolts: The last page of the first issue of this comic about a new group of never before seen heroes reveals: they are really the Masters Of Evil!
  • Black Moon Chronicles: Albums often end on these to set up a Cliffhanger. For instance, one comic ends with Wismerhill returning to Moork to find his masters Haazheel Thorn and Greldinard, who had apparently both been killed, waiting for him inside the throne room.
  • Brody's Ghost has one at the end of Volume 3, when Brody sees the picture of a victim of a crime that might be related to the Penny Murders he's investigating. It's Talia's picture, revealing she didn't die of leukemia as she claimed.
  • Several close issues of Revival: a truck full of human body parts, a reviver escaping the quarantine, a reviver Creepy Child self-mutilating, and a reviver's pregnancy are some of them.
  • The Rebirth one-shot of Batwoman (Rebirth) ends with a large panel of an older, more militarized Kate Kane, who is now the commanding officer of the Colony and is leading some sort of attack on Gotham.
  • Disney Ducks Comic Universe: The ending of "Back to Xanadu" by Don Rosa. The Ducks spend the whole story searching for the lost Mongol treasure, discover that Tralla La is the mythical Xanadu, but end up losing the crown of Kublai Khan that Scrooge had obtained in a previous story after narrowly saving the city from a disaster that the Ducks themselves created. The chief is then given the crown by a villager and curses the Mongol legacy before throwing it in the giant whirlpool beneath the city, which is shown to contain the entire treasure of the Golden Horde.
  • Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers (Boom! Studios) #25, the first part of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers: Shattered Grid has the splash page of Lord Drakkon, the Evil Counterpart of Green Ranger Tommy Oliver, running his heroic counterpart through with Saba. This is topped a few pages later with Kimberly mourning over Tommy's lifeless body.
  • B.P.R.D.: The Devil You Know: Acting on a tip from the psychic Fenix, the team return to the ruins of their old headquarters to exhume Roger's grave. When they finally find the coffin, Liz wrenches it open. What's inside isn't Roger. It's Hellboy.
  • In the final chapter of Shazam! (2012), Black Adam holds Billy's foster siblings hostage, demanding that he hand over his powers over the Living Lightning to him for their safety. Shazam agrees to surrender, but doesn't know how. Adam explains that the Lightning flows through family, and thanks to the Wizard's blessing, he and Shazam are connected as family. At that moment, Shazam is reminded of what the Wizard told him of the Secret Spell: family is what it can be, not what it should be. And so, with a cry of "Shazam!" Billy casts his spell right at Adam and the kids. Adam comments that he doesn't feel different. But, the following two-page spread reveals that Billy has shared his powers with Freddy, Mary, Pedro, Eugene, and Darla, together becoming a Super Family Team of Shazams.

    Fan Works 
  • In the Homestuck ask blog, "Ask Slave John", humans are depicted as being enslaved by Trolls, John being one of them. We get three Wham Shots when someone asks if he's met any other humans:
    • When asked if he knew Dave Strider, he mentions that he and Dave were friends when being trained for slave labor and were sold to different masters, never seeing each other again. When John ponders where Dave is now, we see a silhouette of Dave wearing a suit with a teal Libra symbol, implying that his master is Terezi Pyrope.
    • Rose Lalonde is stated to have worked alongside John once, but later left. John mentions that he heard she became "a gift for some important jade blood", coupled with a silhouette of Rose wearing a jade-colored sash with a Virgo symbol. She's now owned by Kanaya.
    • Jade Harley's is probably the most shocking; she is mentioned to have belonged to Eridan and John states that she was likely killed, but at the same time remains optimistic that she may have been found someone who could help her survive—this is coupled with a silhouette of Jade holding a gun and wearing a silver necklace with a Cancer symbol on it. She's with Karkat now.

    Film — Animated 
  • In Toy Story 2, when Woody asks his Roundup friends to come back to Andy’s house with him and the other toys, he turns around Stinky Pete’s box to find him gone—and screwing shut the grate on the air vent. That’s when we find out that Pete is Evil All Along rather than a gentleman, going to any lengths to keep Woody with them en route to Japan, which he’d been trying to do since Woody told him, Jessie and Bullseye that he still belonged to Andy. It starts when Pete wakes up Al by turning up “Woody’s Roundup” while Woody tries to retrieve his detached arm.
  • In Up, such a shot reveals that Carl's house is now in the middle of a construction area.
  • In Wreck-It Ralph
    • When Ralph sees Vanellope's picture on the side of Sugar Rush's gaming console, meaning that she's not The Missingno. as he has been lead to believe, but a legitimate character who was unfairly cut out of the game.
    • In the climactic race, Vanellope (who's trying to win) is fighting with King Candy. She starts glitching out while she's grabbing on to his arm, which causes his appearance to destabilize and reveals him for who he really is: Turbo, one-time main character of an old racing game who got both his and another game disabled through being an Attention Whore.
  • The shot in ParaNorman that reveals that the witch is just a scared little girl, who looks uncannily like Norman.
  • In Monsters, Inc., we have this moment accompanying Waternoose's Wham Line.
    Mike: Um, sir...that's not her door.
    Waternoose: I know, I know...
    (Suddenly, Randall appears next to the door, opening it with a maniacal grin)
    Waternoose: It's yours.
  • Monsters University has a shot that reveals the door that Mike found and opened to the human world doesn't have one child, but an entire summer camp.
  • In The Spongebob Squarepants Movie, SpongeBob and Patrick are drying out in a gift shop on the surface and they believe that they didn't reach Shell City and failed their mission...until Patrick notices a sign above them reading "Shell City: Marine Gifts and Sundries". Yep, they did make it.
  • Mulan's musical number "A Girl Worth Fighting For" abruptly ends mid-lyrics when the soldiers arrive at a village razed by the Huns.
  • Frozen: Hans stopping just inches away from Anna's lips to kiss her and revive her of her frozen heart, then giving a rather scary grin, which not only alerts Anna, but also the whole audience, that something is not right.
  • Incredibles 2: At an event celebrating Elastigirl capturing the Screenslaver, Elastigirl looks at one of the screens showing her fight with the villain and sees a the action being played on a screen in the background. By realizing that the Screenslaver somehow accessed her suit's camera, Elastigirl has a Eureka Moment that gets her one step closer to finding the person responsible. This is then followed by Evelyn, who's been "helping" her the entire time, slapping a hypno-mask on her.
  • Moana has two back-to-back.
    • When Moana finally makes it to Te Fiti's resting place, she finds that the island itself has vanished entirely. This leads directly to the second Wham Shot.
    • Moana sees the symbol of Te Fiti on Te Ka's torso, revealing that Te Ka is Te Fiti.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • Absolute Power: Alan Richmond being the President of the United States is revealed like this. Initially, the audience isn't aware who he is when Luther witnesses his affair with and murder of Christy Sullivan; the presence of his security staff hints that he's a high-placed person, but he's not formally introduced until a White House press conference when the camera pans up to reveal that the President is the same man who is responsibe for the death of a young woman that night.
  • The entirety of Citizen Kane deals with making sense of the eponymous Kane's life, including trying to find the meaning behind the last word he said- "Rosebud." At the very end, when everyone has given up, you see some of Kane's old possessions being burned, including a sled with the word "Rosebud" on it, which Kane had ridden as a young child.
  • In Vertigo when Judy flashes back to pretending to be Madeleine to help fake her suicide.
  • Planet of the Apes (1968): The shot of the buried Statue of Liberty, showing that the astronauts were on Earth All Along.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • In Iron Man, the black jeep drives into the terrorists' camp and Obadiah Stane gets out.
    • Iron Man 2 ended with Agent Coulson on looking at a crater caused by Thor's hammer, connecting the movie to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
    • The Stinger to The Avengers gives us the final shot of Thanos, the Mad Titan turning toward the camera...and smiling.
    • In Iron Man 3, as the movie nears its climax, the camera briefly cuts to Tony's wrecked home; a hidden underground room was shrouded in complete darkness, until more than a dozen arc reactors start lighting up the place.
    • Toward the end of Thor: The Dark World, as Thor leaves the throne room, Odin is revealed to be Loki in disguise.
    • In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Steve gets into a fight with the titular antagonist and rips his mask off. Cue a shot of the unmasked Winter Soldier looking back at Steve revealing him to be Bucky Barnes.
    • In Avengers: Age of Ultron, the Avengers are debating whether Vision can be trusted, since he was created by Ultron. Then Vision casually picks up Mjolnir and hands it to Thor.
    • In Captain America: Civil War, the third and final time we return to the mission that formed the Action Prologue, we finally see that the people in the car were Howard and Maria Stark.
    • In Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Nebula and Gamora suddenly realizing the cave they've fallen into is filled with thousands of skeletal remains.
    • In Spider-Man: Homecoming, Peter Parker rings the doorbell to his date's house on Homecoming night, and Adrian Toomes opens the door, revealing that Peter's crush is the daughter of the film's villain.
    • In Thor: Ragnarok, Thor throws Mjolnir at Hela in their initial confrontation. Then she not only blocks the hammer with one hand, she then destroys it.
    • In Avengers: Infinity War, Thanos snaps his fingers with the Gauntlet and one-by-one, heroes and others start turning into dust.
    • Earlier, when Thanos and Gamora search for the Soul Stone on another world, its hooded guardian steps forward to reveal himself as the Red Skull.
    • In The Stinger for Ant-Man and the Wasp, Scott is in the Quantum Realm on a mission and calls back to Hank, Janet and Hope but hears only static. Cut to the rooftop where all three are now nothing but ash, the camera focusing on the communicator as Scott's voice calls for help.
  • The end of Remember Me: after the main character waits in his father's office, a teacher writes the date on the board: September 11, 2001. Then - to show just how relevant that date is - it zooms out of the office, which is revealed to be in the Twin Towers.
  • From The Prestige, when we finally get to see that the mysterious Lord Caldlow is actually Angier, who appeared to die at the start of the film.
  • In Big Game, Moore and Oskari turning in surprise and the camera moving to reveal dead fish, dead bodies and finally, the tail of Air Force One, which turns out to be submerged in the lake the duo has fallen into.
  • Oblivion (2013): When Jack and Julia crash-land in a supposedly radioactive area, they spy a second plane land on the ground and watch as the pilot gets out from a distance. It's another Jack.
  • Final Destination 5: The ending has this for a wham shot. After they're convinced that they're off Death's list, Molly and Sam head off on an airplane to France, where everything is pretty normal...until Sam looks over and sees two people getting thrown off the plane. Didn't get that? Turns out the people getting thrown out were Alex Browning and Carter Horton, the duo who are some of the survivors to the Flight 180 Disaster, the very same disaster seen in the first movie. Yeah, this just became a prequel.
  • In the film version of Gone Girl we get the shot of Amy driving a car with a determined look on her face. That in it of itself might not seem like much, but the caption reveals that this takes place on the day of Amy's disappearance. And then it hits you: Amy staged her disappearance.
  • In We Need to Talk About Kevin, when Eva comes home after witnessing Kevin turn himself in, she opens the curtain covering the patio (just like in the film's opening scene) and discovers the true reason why Franklin wasn't answering her calls all evening: Franklin and Celia were both killed by Kevin's arrows BEFORE his massacre at the school.
  • The Dark Knight: Batman arrives at the address Joker gave him to save Rachel. He bursts through the door to find not Rachel, but Harvey.
  • After Tommy drops Jason into the tractor harrows in Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning, a closeup on the corpse reveals that the killer wasn't Jason after all, but someone else.
  • The ending of Basic Instinct: Catherine is seen reaching under the bed during the final scene with Nick, but when she brings up her hand, it's empty. The final shot pans down to show an icepick under the bed, implying Catherine is the real killer.
  • In X-Men: The Last Stand, Cyclops and Jean Grey reunite in one scene, resulting in a Big Damn Kiss shot, which starts to focus on Jean Grey as her expression becomes emotionless while her eyes turn black and her skin gets paler, giving the strong implication that she's not exactly herself and that Cyclops is dead meat.
  • During the big duel at the funhouse in The Man with the Golden Gun, Scaramanga goes near the statue of Bond where he finished off the last person out to get him. Then there's a shot from behind the statue, and its fingers that he shot off before have somehow come back....
  • During the climax of Who Framed Roger Rabbit, we see Judge Doom get run over by a steamroller...and survive, revealing himself to be a Toon.
  • Ghost Ship: The close-up of the mysterious instigator of the Antonia Graza massacre after he kills Francesca, revealing the demon to be the supposedly meek and heroic Ferriman, who originally led the protagonists to the ship.
  • The person who will help Will and Elizabeth retrieve Jack from Davy Jones' Locker in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest is the resurrected Barbossa.
  • In The Monster Squad, after bonding with Scary German Guy, one of the kids remarks upon leaving that he knows a lot about monsters. Scary German Guy agrees and shuts the door after them, revealing numbers tattooed onto his arm. Especially jarring considering this was a kid's film!
  • In 2001: A Space Odyssey, when the scene of Dave and Frank discussing HAL's possible unreliability shifts to closeups of their mouths intercut with HAL's fisheye lens, indicating that HAL is reading their lips.
  • In Kingsman: The Secret Service there's the closeup of Arthur's neck, revealing a scar across it that indicates he's had a chip implanted just like all the other politicians in the film. This reveals that Arthur has joined forces with Valentine and the Kingsmen have been compromised.
  • Vantage Point. Agent Taylor is seen on camera dressed as a cop.
  • Jurassic Park:
    • The Brachiosaurus, the very first dinosaur we see in all her glory in the park and the moment that drives home the fact that this film is about freaking dinosaurs being brought back to life.
    • Later, the escape of the Tyrannosaurus rex, which is where things finally get real.
    • And later still, when Ellie is ambushed by a raptor after turning the park's power back on, she's seemingly found by the chief engineer, Ray Arnold...only to discover that it's actually his severed arm, signalling that the raptors killed him.
    • And perhaps most famously of all, from the climax: The heroes are cornered by raptors and miles away from any help...a raptor prepares to lunge at them and finish them off, all seems lost...and then the freaking Tyrannosaurus rex comes back and kills the Big One and her minion.
  • The Lost World: Jurassic Park:
    • The little girl from the opening meeting a Compsognathus—the first sign that something here isn't right...
  • Jurassic Park III:
    • The Spinosaurus snapping a T. rex's neck—bear in mind, the T. rexes are the most infamously powerful dinosaurs in the franchise. The fact that the Spinosaurus can kill one with little effort shows that it's a truly formidable enemy.
    • Grant getting a better look at the interior of the seemingly abandoned animal enclosure the group sought refuge in—it's a giant aviary. Which can only mean that not only can whatever is in there fly, but it must be absolutely massive. This is quickly followed by another Wham Shot of a Pteranodon approaching Eric Kirby Slender Man-style from the fog in the Aviary, before snatching him up for lunch.
  • Jurassic World:
    • When Owen and his Raptor Squad finally catch up to the Indominus rex, she suddenly starts communicating with the raptors...leading all four of said raptors to give their former alpha a Death Glare.
    • After Claire convinces Lowery to help her open one of the paddocks at the climax, we get the ominous yet triumphant return of the original Tyrannosaurus rex.
  • In The Terminator, Sarah Connor is talking to her mother over the phone. As she's telling her the number for the place she's at, we cut to the other end of the line...and it's the Terminator, mimicking her mother's voice.
  • In Terminator Genisys, John Connor is shot dead by "Pops", who even bleeds...But then the blood turns to Nanomachines, revealing he's now a robot.
  • In the trailer of The Jungle Book (2016), the first half is narrated by Scarlett Johansson, leaving many viewers confused, until...
    ScarJo: Let go of your fear now...
    (shot of Mowgli standing before a truly massive snake)
    Kaa: And me.
  • In Tales from the Darkside: The Movie the segment "Cat From Hell", it's already clear the Professional Killer isn't going to take out the cat he's hired to kill. But just what this cat can do is made clear when there is a P.O.V. Cam lunging at the hitman's face, and the next shot shows the cat had leaped right into the hitman's mouth.
  • In Alien, Ripley is getting attacked by Ash. So, Parker hits him in the head using his makeshift flamethrower, and it tears off, revealing that Ash is actually an android.
  • In Creepshow 2, right after the Blob Monster eats Randy, the camera watches as it slowly moves back into the water. Then the camera pans over to a sign half-hidden by foliage. It reads: NO SWIMMING.
  • An In-Universe example in The Terminal. Viktor Navorski, then unable to grasp his situation due to not speaking any English, reacts strongly when he sees the political violence engulfing his country on TV.
  • An In-Universe example occurs in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan after the Reliant has launched a sneak attack that has crippled the Enterprise. Kirk is hailed by the commander of the Reliant to discuss surrender—and it's Kirk's former enemy, Khan Noonien Singh. Kirk is so shocked he can barely speak.
  • A positive example occurs at the end of Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. After saving the world, Kirk and his officers are shuttled to their new ship. It looks like it's going to be the new Excelsior, but they fly right past her—to a Constitution-class ship named Enterprise. NCC-1701-A.
    Kirk: My friends...we've come home.
  • In Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, the Enterprise is escorting Chancellor Gorkon's flagship to a Peace Conference on Earth. Half the bridge officers (including Kirk) are hung over from too much Romulan ale at dinner...and a photon torpedo suddenly hits Gorkon's battlecruiser.
    Kirk: What's happened?
    Spock: We have fired on the chancellor's ship!
  • In Star Trek: Into Darkness, Kirk and Spock are interrogating the rogue Commander Harrison, whom they've just captured on Qo'noS, when Sulu reports a ship approaching at warp — and it's not Klingon. Within seconds, the downwarp reveals...a bigass Federation starship, looking like a bigger, meaner cousin of the Enterprise.
  • Star Trek Beyond:
    • The sight of the Enterprise's severed warp nacelles floating away from the ship, their glow dying as power fades. At this point, it is clear that our heroes are screwed.
    • After Scotty meets Jaylah on the planet Altamid, she takes him to her "house", which is actually a crashed ship. Scotty is then stunned when he sees the name of said ship: USS Franklin. It's a Starfleet ship.
  • At one point in The Invitation, Will witnesses David lighting and hanging a red lantern outside. At the end of the film, after The Invitation is revealed to be a death cult and everyone except Will, Kira and Tommy is dead, Will and Kira look out and see several other houses in the Hollywood Hills area hanging the same red lantern, as sirens and gunshots ring out in the Hills.
  • Apartment Zero is full of them.
    • When Adrian walks into the apartment and sees Claudia's body.
      • When you see the bloody remains of the man Jack killed for his passport.
      • Adrian is watching the footage of the militants. Then then the camera shifts and reveals Jack watching Adrian.
  • The ending of Sleepaway Camp reveals not only Angela is the killer, she is actually Peter. The real Angela was killed alongside their father years ago while Peter was raised as a girl by his mentally impaired aunt.
  • Barbarella: After the Excessive Machine scene, the camera focuses on Barbarella's Durand Durand-detector on the floor. The concierge accidentally steps on it, turning it on and it starts flashing and beeping, revealing that the concierge is Durand Durand.
  • The 1968 cowboy western Shalako opens a scene with a bunch of cowboys loudly and raucously whooping and making noises at a cougar to scare and drive it off, then cuts to, of all people, Brigitte Bardot!! dressed in fancy, European hunting clothes and a silk top-hat and wielding a rifle, which she fires and kills the cougar.
  • In the climax of Jigsaw, Logan and Halloran stand facing each other in a room with both of them wearing a laser collar trap around their necks. The collar will activate and cut them clean if they don't confess their sins, the order of who plays it being decided by a button for each person on a control panel in the middle of the two. Halloran tricks Logan into going first, and after he fails the test, Halloran is dragged back and forced to take it himself. As the lasers activate and burn the ceiling over him, he manages to confess and stop the lasers just in time. The Wham Shot comes in after he sits staring at the burned ceiling above him, before glancing at the ceiling above Logan's body and realising that there are no burn marks above him. Soon enough, Logan himself gets up, revealing his own game wasn't real, and that Halloran is helpless to do anything.
  • In Kahaani, a thriller, the terrorist Milan kicks the heavily pregnant protagonist Vidya in the stomach...and then she pulls her belly off, revealing it to be fake, and stabs him in the foot.
  • The end of Rogue One has a Hope Spot as the Rebels escape with the Death Star plans. Then the lights cut out, and moments later, the Vader Breath starts up and an ominous red light illumines the corridor. Cue Mook Horror Show.
  • At the end of The Wailing, shaman Il-gwang drops a box full of pictures of the victims, just like those the Japanese hermit had in his shack, meaning that the two worked together the whole time.
  • At the end of Solo, we get to see who Dryden Vos has been answering to and the true mastermind of the Crimson Dawn Syndicate, the former Sith Lord, Maul. It is even more shocking to those who didn't watch the TV series.
  • In Searching, the mystery plot has been seemingly wrapped up with a murder confession from the culprit and a grieving David uploads pics and videos to a memorial website in preparation for his daughter's funeral... and then notices that the redheaded girl in the "Thank You" stock image looks exactly the same as the profile pic of the "fish_n_chips" user who befriended his daughter on YouCast.
  • The trailer for Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) shows a brief scene depicting Burning Godzilla.

  • Codex Alera
    • In Cursor's Fury, the Canim invasion force burns their ships behind them.
      Tavi: They mean to stay.
    • At the end of the same book, Tavi becomes the first Aleran ever to see a female Cane, meaning that the invasion force wasn't just an invasion, it was a desperate attempt at colonization.
      Tavi: I am not afraid of Nasaug anymore. I'm afraid of what drove him from his home.
    • In Princeps' Fury, Tavi (who's in the Canim land of Shuar) sees That all the land outside Shuar is covered with croach — the Vord have conquered it.
  • Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone provides another written one when Harry reaches the chamber where the Mirror of Erised is kept.
    "There was already someone there—but it wasn't Snape. It wasn't even Voldemort.
    It was Quirrell."
  • Words of Radiance (second book of The Stormlight Archive):
    • Despite being text only, the book still manages one at the climax.
      "Kaladin!" Syl's voice. "Stretch forth thy hand!" She zipped around him, suddenly visible as a ribbon of light.
      "I can't..." Kaladin said, drained.
      "Stretch forth thy hand!"
      He reached out a trembling hand. Moash hesitated.
      Wind blew in the opening in the wall, and Syl's ribbon of light became mist, a form she often took. Silver mist, which grew larger, coalesced before Kaladin, extending into his hand.
      Glowing, brilliant, a Shardblade emerged from the mist, vivid blue light shining from swirling patterns along its length.
    • There's another after the climax.
      The air in front of him blurred, as if heated in a ring near the ground. A streak of light spun about the ring, forming a wall five or six feet high. It faded immediately — really, it was just an afterimage, as if something glowing had spun in the circle very quickly.
      In the center of it appeared Jasnah Kholin, standing tall.

    Live-Action TV 
  • 24:
    • In the third season, the viewer sees someone helping out the Mexican drug cartel for the first few episodes. Then the operative leaves his office and steps into CTU, revealing that he is also The Mole (or so the viewers thought at the time).
    • Similarly played in Season 5, Episode 16, where Dragon Christopher Henderson is talking to his accomplice on the phone which in turn is revealed to be the President of the United States.
    • Heartbreakingly done at the end of the first season where Jack runs into the room his wife his been tied up in only to discover the bullet wound in her chest as he attempts to rouse her.
    • Late in Day 8, Jack and Renee are racing against the clock to save President Hassan from terrorists who are broadcasting a live feed of their "trial" of Hassan before they execute him. They burst in just in time and kill the terrorists. Jack then spots one of the video feeds showing that the terrorists are still alive and unharmed, revealing that it's not a live broadcast but a recording, and that Hassan has already been killed.
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.:
    • In the episode "Turn, Turn, Turn", the signal is finally decrypted and it's not good news: OUT OF THE SHADOWS, INTO THE LIGHT: HYDRA
    • In the same episode, Coulson's face changing right after Garrett says something only Coulson knew: "...the same machine she used on that bitch in the flower dress."
    • Used in the episode "Shadows" when it turns out Simmons isn't really there and Fitz is talking to himself.
  • American Gods: Two in the first episode.
    • The coin Mad Sweeney gave Shadow and he in turn leaves on Laura's grave shines with an eerie light before being swallowed into the earth.
    • Shadow staring on in the aftermath of a bloody massacre of the men who beat and hung him.
  • In the Arrow episode "Vigilante", Artemis is standing on a rooftop when Prometheus appears behind her...only for her to turn and smile, revealing that she's The Mole.
    • At the very end of the same episode, Oliver returns to the lair, only to discover "Laurel", waiting for him.
    Laurel: Hi, Ollie.
    (cut to black)
  • The shot of the scorched remains of Earth in Battlestar Galactica (2003).
  • Breaking Bad:
    • At the end of Season 4, a wham shot reveals that Walter White had Lilies of the Valley growing in his back yard, more or less proving that he was the one who poisoned Brock, albeit non-lethally, and that he's been playing Gus and Jesse for the entire stretch of the finale.
      Bryan Cranston: The final shot of the season, is more of a revelation really, of who this man has become, and the lengths that he'll go to, to get whatever he wants.
    • Earlier in that episode, there is a wham shot preceded by a wham sound: Gus is about to kill Hector Salamanca, but Hector starts tapping his dinger, which isn't dinging properly. It is revealed that he let Walter strap his bomb on the bottom of Hector's wheelchair and Hector suicide-bombs Gus and his henchman Tyrus to get revenge on Gus for wiping out his family.
    • At the end of "Gliding Over All" Hank goes to Walt's bathroom and happens to pick up his copy of Leaves of Grass...and finds a dedication to "W.W." from "G.B." One flashback later, and Hank finally discovers Walt's secret.
    • Near the end of "Confessions" has the look on Jesse's face when he realizes that Huell lifted his weed off of him. We see him finally come to the conclusion that Walt had him do the same thing with the ricin and that Walt was the one who poisoned Brock.
    • The penultimate episode of the series, "Granite State" has Walt call the DEA to give himself up and settle down to have a last drink before being captured, only to see his former Grey Matter business partners talking on television about him. The police raid the bar he called from, the final shot being his still full glass left alone on the counter.
  • On Buffy the Vampire Slayer, this is how we see that her mother died.
    • In the season 10 comics, Andrew steals the Vampyr book and everyone thinks he'll resurrect Warren. But the end shot of the issue reveals he intends to resurrect Tara. Willow talks him out of it in the next issue.
    • Issue 11 has Buffy and Spike's Big Damn Kiss. Finally.
  • Community
  • Criminal Minds likes these, as there's often a dramatic change between what's going on in the unsub's head and what's really going on. For example, in "Reflections of Desire" he walks out of his house with his mother to adoring fans...only the "fans" are the FBI come to arrest him and his mother is long dead. (The episode is a Whole Plot Reference to Psycho).
  • The 1981 TV adaptation of The Day of the Triffids uses two understated but effective Wham Shots in quick succession in the first episode. The protagonist is lying in a hospital bed with his eyes covered in bandages that are due to be removed later that day, dictating a letter to a friend into a tape recorder. He remarks that he can't hear any traffic from the nearby main road so it must be somewhere in the small hours...and then the camera pans and zooms towards the window, showing broad daylight outside. A few moments later, he mentions in passing that a nurse comes in with a cup of tea and helps him to the bathroom at 7AM on the dot... and the camera zooms in on the digital clock on the nightstand, which reads 7:53. And then a few exposition-via-flashback scenes later the clock chimes the hour, and suddenly the protagonist finds out what the audience already knew.
  • Doctor Who:
    • One that's shown up a few times is the revelation that the interior of some innocent-looking structure is actually a TARDIS — such as when Vicki and Steven find their way into the Monk's TARDIS in "The Time Meddler", or when the Doctor bursts into the upstairs flat in "The Lodger". For that matter, the first time that Barbara crosses the threshold of the Doctor's TARDIS in "An Unearthly Child". "The Time Meddler"'s example was, of course, a double-whammy, as it revealed that there actually are other TARDISes in existence.
    • One of the biggest wham shots in the entire series is in the final scene of the last episode of "The Tenth Planet", when the Doctor regenerates for the very first time. The episode itself is missing, but luckily, the regeneration footage itself survives.
    • "The Parting of the Ways":
      • The Dalek that Jack kills has two eyes, not one. The Dalek Emperor soon reveals that his new Daleks were created from Human Resources.
      • Rose, demoralized and upset because the TARDIS won't fly, is sitting on a bench at the edge of a sports field. As Mickey talks to her, she notices Arc Words "BAD WOLF" written on the ground. Then she notices the phrase twice more in graffiti on the other side of the field.
      • When the Doctor notices the back of his hand start to glow, meaning he has to regenerate.
    • "School Reunion": It's not a surprise for the viewers, but Sarah Jane gets quite the shock when, after hiding in a storage room off the school gym, she turns to find the TARDIS parked inside.
    • The viewer is given absolutely no clue why Madame de Pompadour is being targeted throughout the entirety of "The Girl in the Fireplace"… until the final shot, when the camera pulls out to reveal that the name of the derelict ship is the S.S. Madame de Pompadour.
    • A rather stunningly well-delivered one occurs in "Utopia", when Martha notices Professor Yana's pocket watch.
    • Near the end of "Partners in Crime", Donna leaves a message with a bystander on her way to join the Doctor. Then the bystander turns to face the camera... and it's Rose.
    • From "Vincent and the Doctor" comes a particularly harrowing one: after meeting Vincent van Gogh and facing down the nightmarish monster haunting his final days, showing him the TARDIS, and revealing his future legacy, the Doctor and Amy excitedly return to a present day art exhibit they saw at the start of the episode. They're horrified to see that not a single new piece of art has appeared. For all their efforts, Vincent still killed himself.
    • "Day of the Moon": After the Doctor fails to rescue a little girl, she wanders out into the streets. A nearby homeless man asks if she's all right, and she says she's dying, but it'll be okay. She then regenerates, just as the Doctor and Master had.
    • In "Asylum of the Daleks", when the Doctor discovers Oswin is a Dalek.
    • From "The Name of the Doctor":
      Introducing John Hurt as The Doctor.
    • This is how the Twelfth Doctor is revealed in the 50th anniversary special "The Day of the Doctor".
    • It was spoiled in the trailer and somewhat predictable in the episode, but the double-doors closing to show windows that look like Cybermen eyes was still a great wham shot in "Dark Water".
    • Although spoilered by the BBC promotional material, the closing shot of the globe-enclosed Citadel of Gallifrey in "Heaven Sent" still packs a wallop.
    • "The Ghost Monument": The Doctor and company, after getting teleported into deep space, wind up in the company of the two finalists of a deadly race, who are told by organizer Ilin that their final objective is the titular Ghost Monument, so named by the planet Desolation's original settlers because it appears, insubstantial, every thousand years. After the racers leave, the Doctor, on a hunch, demands Ilin show her what the Ghost Monument looks like. He pulls up a hologram, and it turns out to be exactly what the Doctor came for: the missing TARDIS.
  • On ER, when Neela goes to visit Ray in another hospital (he was hit by a truck several episodes prior). When she first sees him, his face is bruised and scratched, but he seems okay otherwise...until his room door is opened wider and his nurse picks him up, revealing that both of his legs have been amputated.
  • In The Flash (2014) the episode "King Shark", The Stinger shows Earth-2 as the "Man in the Mask", quivers while Zoom returns, carrying Jay's corpse, only for the reveal that Zoom is "Jay".
    "Jay": Well, this is a complication.
    • Later on in the episode "Killer Frost", the final shot of Julian opening a cabinet in the Forensics Lab...and pulling out the Alchemy costume.
    • Played straight and subverted at the same time in "The Once And Future Flash" where Killer Frost asks Savitar why she should trust him. He then reveals that his metallic exterior is just armor and takes it off...but the episode ends before we can see who he is. It wouldn't be so frustrating if it wasn't so close to the end of the season.
    • Throughout season 4 (And in the Supergirl 2015 part of the yearly crossover), a mysterious girl keeps showing up, and has these on a few occasions. In episode 11, after she pays for Cisco and Ralph's coffee and has a brief conversation with them, she looks happily on as they leave...before writing in the same symbols Barry wrote in after he came out of the Speed Force in the first episode of the season. In episode 20, after delivering a gift to Joe and Cecile's baby shower, she makes sure no one, especially Iris, can see her before speeding away. And in the season finale, Barry runs towards a satellite that he must punch with enough force to destroy before it destroys the city. Just as he's about to do so, the scene suddenly rewinds, then plays again...with another speedster joining him.
  • Friends
    • Season 1: Ross exits his plane with a new girlfriend.
    • Season 2: Janice is the woman Chandler has been speaking on the phone with.
    • Season 4: Chandler and Monica are in bed together.
    • Season 5: Ross and Rachel exit a Vegas quickie marriage chapel.
    • Season 7: The camera pans to a pregnant Rachel.
  • On Fringe, the existence of the alternate universe is confirmed when the camera draws back from an office window where the last scene of Season 1 takes place, and keeps drawing back to show that it's an office in the World Trade Center, which wasn't destroyed in that reality.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • The Wham moment in Episode 1 isn't Jaime's "The things I do for love," but the fact that he pushes Bran out the window right after saying it.
    • "The Kingsroad": Bran opens his eyes.
    • "A Golden Crown": The Dothraki seize Viserys and break his arm.
    • "You Win or You Die": The goldcloaks turn on Ned's men.
    • "Fire and Blood": The first dragon comes into view.
    • "Blackwater": Ser Mandon Moore slashes Tyrion's face.
    • "Walk of Punishment": Locke chops, and Jaime screams.
    • In the season 3 episode "The Rains of Castamere", it's the shot of Catelyn pulling back Roose's sleeve to reveal chainmail that clues the audience into Roose being a traitor, and therefore the whole wedding being a trap. Then the knives come out. There's also the shot of the doors being shut and "The Rains of Castamere" starting to play. And then again, with the shot of Black Walder appearing to finish the job.
    • Season 4's "Oathkeeper" showed what do the Others did to Craster's sons. They got turned to White Walkers by The Night's King.
    • "The Laws of Gods and Men": Shae's arrival at the trial.
    • "The Mountain and the Viper": Ser Gregor trips Oberyn, turning what would be a certain victory for Oberyn into a defeat. Gregor kills Oberyn, resulting in Tyrion losing his trial by champion and being sentenced to death.
    • "Watchers on the Wall": Ygritte gets shot.
    • "The Children": Tyrion finds Shae in Tywin's bed.
    • "Mother's Mercy": Jon is summoned outside, supposedly because one of the wildlings has seen his uncle Benjen. Too late, he realizes he's walking into a trap when he sees a sign saying "TRAITOR"
    • "The Broken Man": Among the various peasants building a sept is Sandor Clegane- the last time we'd seen him, he was unable to move with injuries that were seemingly fatal.
    • The final episode of Season 6, "The Winds of Winter":
      • The episode gives us the cut from the baby's face in the Tower of Joy to the present, confirming that Jon Snow is really Ned Stark's nephew and his true parents are Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen.
      • Three separate ones for the Green Trial. First, Lancel discovers the barrels of wildfire. Then, the camera reveals the nearly burnt-down candle acting as a timed fuse. Then, when Margaery tries to leave the Sept with Loras, the Sparrows stop them, sealing their fate with the rest.
  • In The Good Place Eleanor declares "This is the Bad Place!" to the Good Place architect Michael, who stares at her for a moment - then his face splits into a Slasher Smile and cue the Evil Laugh.
  • Hannibal:
    • As if the season finale wasn't already a Wham Episode (short version: Will Graham is framed for Hannibal Lecter's murders), the final scene shows Will in what will become Hannibal Lecter's jail cell.
    • In the season 2 episode "Takiawase", Beverly Katz discovers Hannibal's hidden basement, and whatever he has stored down there. She turns on the lights to get a better look, revealing Hannibal standing mere feet behind her, and ensuring to the viewers that Beverly is guaranteed to not get out of this alive.
  • In Haven, it is prophesied that a man with a circular maze tattoo on his arm will kill Duke Crocker. The second season finale ends with Duke looking on in horror as Nathan Wuornos sports the tattoo and threatens him with a gun.
  • How I Met Your Mother
    • The titular mother appearing for the very first time in the season 8 finale "Something New".
    • In "Vesuvius", after The Mother said that "What mother is going to miss her daughter’s wedding?", Ted gave a sorrowful reaction to it, suggesting that she is dying.
  • How to Get Away with Murder uses this frequently to reveal characters' involvement in the season's core mystery.
    • 1x09: Combined with Wham Line to reveal that Annalise Keating was present when Wes went back for the murder weapon.
    • 2x09: When ADA Sinclair's car pulls up outside the mansion, Bonnie is driving. Then we see that Sinclair is in the trunk, already dead.
    • 3x09: The person under the sheet is finally revealed to be Wes Gibbins.
  • The first appearance of the Super Sentai army, preparing to fight off the Zangyack invasion, at the beginning of Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger. Not only is this the largest gathering of toku heroes for the time, it also shows just how dire the incoming crisis will be.
    • In episode 40, the Gokaigers were sent to the past in order to supposedly claim a Grand Power. The episode ends but they didn't get a new power; however, a quick cut shows the temple they protected while in the past is home to something: the magic jar containing Ninjaman.
  • The Last Train has a train of passengers flash-frozen in a tunnel after a crash. When they thaw out, they find much of the outside world in ruins. The woman responsible for the freezing tells them a huge asteroid had just been about to hit the planet when the crash happened. The group decides to go looking for survivors and that it shouldn't be bad after a few months. As they leave, the camera zooms in on a faded gravestone with the date of death marked 2012...and as the train crashed in 1999, that means they've been frozen for decades.
  • Lost:
    • At the end of the season 4 finale, Jack has opened the coffin of "Jeremy Bentham," though we can't see inside of it yet. Then the camera pans over so we can see who "Jeremy Bentham" really is...and it's Locke!
    • Another one earlier in the season: One of the people on the boat is Michael.
    • In the season 3 finale, there was Kate appearing at the end of Jack's flashbacks showing that it's actually a flashforward taking place after they get off the island.
    • At the end of the fourth episode, Locke in a wheelchair at the end of his last flashback. All previous flashbacks throughout it had him behind a desk or in bed.
  • The Man in the High Castle: At the end of episode 9, Juliana and Frank see one of the films, where they're shocked to see an alternate reality counterpart of Frank being executed by Joe Blake, who's shown as part of a Nazi death squad. The viewer was already made aware that he's a Nazi agent, but it's a shock to the characters.
  • Melrose Place:
    • At the end of the second-season episode "Psycho-Therapy", it seems Michael has accepted that he and Sydney belong together after all. The camera goes outside the beach house....revealing Kimberly standing outside, glaring in the window. She didn't die after all.
    • Another wham in the next episode, "The Bitch Is Back". After making passionate love with Michael, Kimberly goes into the bathroom and pulls off her wig, showing us her badly-chopped hair and a long, ugly scar along the side of her head.
  • Merlin:
    • A Wham Shot takes place when Arthur notices Guinevere and Lancelot exchanging a Held Gaze and Holding Hands.
    • The final episode ended with a shot of a an aged Merlin walking down a road as a truck whizzes past, revealing that he's immortal and is still waiting for Arthur in the 21st century.
  • NCIS:
    • Season 6 ends with a doozy. After Ziva leaves the team to rejoin Mossad, we see a terrorist named Saleem in the Horn of Africa, preparing to interrogate a prisoner — and it's Ziva.
    • And then there's the start of Season 7. We once again see Saleem preparing to interrogate his prisoner — and it's Tony.
  • Once Upon a Time: The urn full of magic that even Rumple felt was too dangerous to use tips over. Blue liquid pours out over the ritual sigil left on the floor, taking humanoid shape...and Queen Elsa shoots a blast of frost from her fingertips before walking out.
  • The last scene of the pilot episode of Perception reveals that Natalie is another of Daniel's hallucinations.
  • Person of Interest: The season 3 finale show SWAT raiding the library.
  • The climax of Power Rangers Lost Galaxy's "Power of Pink" has Pink Ranger Kendrix Morgan go into a dangerous series of forcefields to destroy an Artifact of Doom that would destroy the Rangers space colony. She succeeds but gets caught up in a massive explosion. Minutes later her fellow Rangers (and the audience) see her ghost.
  • In the Power Rangers Zeo episode "A Golden Homecoming" we finally see a clear shot of the person Tommy personally handpicked to be the second Gold Ranger, revealing that it's Jason, the original leader of the Rangers.
  • In Power Rangers Dino Charge Heckyl has two of them, one in each part of the series. First one appears at the end of 'One More Energem', setting him up as the next Big Bad after Sledge. Second one is in 'Wings of Danger' and shows his origin story.
  • Pretty Little Liars:
    • The season two finale reveals that the gum wrapper that A was using as a bookmark is the same brand that Mona was chewing earlier.
    • In the season three finale, it's revealed that the mysterious "Red Coat" is Alison.
  • The Sopranos:
    • The season six premiere has the dementia-ridden Uncle Junior thinking that his old rival, Pussy Malanga, is still alive. At the end of the episode, Uncle Junior, thinking that Tony is Malanga, is pointing a gun at Tony while shouting "Cazzata Malanga", meaning "Stupid move, Malanga!", and proceeds to shoot him.
  • Stargate Atlantis: After the successful destruction of the Asuran homeworld in "Be All My Sins Remembered" by the Tau'ri-Wraith-Traveller alliance, the last shot of the episode reveals the apparently still alive Elizabeth Weir clad in villain gear and commanding a Replicator ship.
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation:
    • The famous shot in "The Best of Both Worlds Part 1" where the rescue crew aboard the Borg Ship finally locates the captive Picard. And then he turns to face them, revealing the Borg implants on his face...
    • Part 2 of this episode has the scene where the Enterprise reaches Wolf 359, where Starfleet made their stand against the cube. Riker orders the viewscreen turned on—and everyone sees the shattered hulls of what used to be the Starfleet armada, showing just how unstoppable the Borg are.
  • In the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "In Purgatory's Shadow," Worf and Garak are captured by the Dominion and taken to an internment camp where they're locked up with General Martok and several others. At one point, Martok learns that a friend of his is being released from solitary confinement...and that friend is revealed to be Doctor Bashir, revealing that the one aboard DS9 is a Changeling.
  • Star Trek: Voyager: In the "Unimatrix Zero" two-part episode, several Borg Drones have created a mental world where they can live as individuals free from the Collective's control. At one point one of the children is playing in the woods with his friend, and he crawls through some bushes...until he looks up and sees the Borg Queen standing in front of him.
  • In Supergirl2015's part of Elseworlds, things seem to be winding down. As Barry and Ollie go to share a drink, Ollie gets a call from Batwoman - it seems that the Big Bad of the event, Dr. John Deegan, has made a friend in Arkham Asylum. We then visit the Asylum where we hear a man talking to him. As we get to his cell, he tells him that "Worlds will live. Worlds will die. And the universe will never be the same." before turning around and revealing himself to be the Psycho Pirate. Cue "Coming Fall 2019: Crisis On Infinite Earths".
  • In the first part of a two-parter episode of Touched by an Angel, we see a woman, played by Delta Burke, who was a part of a family of traveling gospel singers and is being counseled by a therapist about the memory of a bus accident that killed several of her family members three years earlier. Throughout the episode, she keeps blocking out the point before the accident and is seen talking to her young son, who we see throughout the hour. At the end of the episode, however, we see that her son also died in the accident, she lost her memory in the accident and that given her lack of accepting the events and her delusions of him, she has been in a mental institution ever since.
  • On Twin Peaks, one of these shows us that Bob is possessing Leland Palmer. Actually, pretty any time we see Bob comes off as one of these, as he's so strange looking and was used so sparingly.
  • Veronica Mars:
    • After Abel Koontz dies, Veronica goes to the hospital to collect his things. While there, she decides to visit Meg who's been in a coma since the bus crash. She's confused when she sees that Meg is hooked up to two heart monitors. She moves one out of the way and sees that Meg is pregnant. Finally, after Veronica leaves, we see Meg open her eyes.
    • In the second season finale, Veronica discovers that two of the victims of the bus crash were players on Woody Goodman's little league team who he molested. Veronica decides to look into the other players on the team and goes to one of Woody's restaurants to look at a group picture. She finds one player she hasn't heard of, then notices the caption "Not Pictured: Cassidy Casablancas". Suddenly, she puts it all together.
  • The Walking Dead:
    • The last walker coming out of the barn in "Pretty Much Dead Already" turns out to be their lost Tagalong Kid Sophia.
      • Shane and Randall reanimating without getting bitten or scratched by other walkers in the same episode.
    • The reappearance of The Governor in "Interment" means that things will get chaotic again.
  • On The West Wing after the shooting the camera follows Toby around the scene, and all of a sudden comes across Josh, who has been shot and has a massive bloody chest wound.
    • In that same episode, Secret Service agent Ron Butterfield finding the President's gunshot wound.

  • Red vs. Blue:
    • In the final episode of Season 10, the context of the last forty episodes is turned on its head when the Director finally removes his Scary Shiny Glasses to reveal his eyes are the same color as Carolina's.
    • In the final episode of Season 12, The Stinger where Control a.k.a. Malcom Hargrove demands to know whether a package he wanted was delivered to him. The computer screen then shows the Meta's helmet.

  • This K Pop music video ends with one. At first, it seems that a man is jealous of his best friend for marrying a girl he liked (to add insult to injury, the groom made him his best man) and at the end angrily tears up a photo of them together. Then comes the wham shot...where he pushes the pictures of the groom and himself together—he was in love with the groom. It was the bride he was jealous of.
  • Useless by Depeche Mode where the very last shot changes the whole perception of the song revealing that the vocalist was singing not into the camera but addressing a girl whose POV it assumed.
  • BTS's music video storyline (known as the BU) features several of these.
    • "Blood, Sweat and Tears" has two: While Jin leans in to kiss a winged statue, it cuts to a shot of a veil being lifted over a hunched figure with the back towards the viewer; as the camera gets closer, we see that it's Taehyung with scars were wings would be, revealing him to be the figure the statue represents. The other happens at the very end; after everything breaks and falls apart, there's a final shot of Jin sitting in front of a mirror, looking towards his reflection...and seeing his face starting to crack like marble.
    • The Highlight Reels short films have a few:
      • In Chapter 1, we see a train passing by, revealing a girl waiting across from Jin, and also the first important character who is not related to the main cast. We also see Jungkook on a wheelchair at a hospital, revealing that he survived the accident in "I NEED U". At the end of the chapter, we jump to a memory of Hoseok, which has 2 of these: we hear the voice of a woman saying "Hoseok-ah, close your eyes", fading to a shot of a mother and a child in front of a carousel, with the mother leaving while the child covers his eyes. The next shot shows the child from a bit closer, still waiting, while a Snickers candy bar (the same one seen in the "MAMA" teaser for WINGS) rests next to him. That's how we learn Hoseok's mother abandoned him.
      • In chapter 3, we get several: The sink where Jimin is desperately washing his hands is starting to fill with blood, Taehyung gets arrested, and Jungkook arrives to his new friend's hospital bed, only to find it empty.
      • Chapter 4 shows several flashbacks in reverse, ending with Jin appearing back on his room from before (with a text showing the date, even), taking off the sweater he was trying on to reveal an absolutely exhausted and sad expression, putting on a casual cap instead. This reveals Jin's ability to go back in time.
    • The end of "Fake Love (extended version)" has Jungkook join the members while wearing a mask and a black tunic, with the camera slowly pulling away from the group, and then a huge block descends from above, appearing to either lock from view or crush the boys.

  • Falsettos: Coredlia and Charlotte sing a brief song about the slow rise of AIDS. Immediately afterwards, the scene goes straight to Whizzer playing tennis with Marvin and collapsing.

    Video Games 
  • Bendy and the Ink Machine:
    • Henry received a letter from his old friend, Joey Drew, saying that he needs to show him something at the animation studio where they used to work together. However, when Henry gets there, there's no sign of Joey. Instead, there is a mysterious machine and a 3D version of Boris, strapped to a table, mouth open, Wingding Eyes showing X.
    • After activating the Ink Machine, Henry rounds the corner to find it boarded off — before a deformed monster resembling Bendy, better known as Ink Bendy, Inked Bendy, or the Ink Demon, appears right before his eyes.
    • After Henry escapes from Inked Bendy in Chapter 2, he walks down a hall and finds none other than Boris. Alive and well.
    • In Chapter 3, Henry and Boris come across an entire room full of Borises and Butcher Gang members having been killed in a similar manner as the Boris in Chapter 1. A moment later, and there's another: Alice torturing a Butcher Gang member, revealing that she's the one responsible.
    • Near the end of Chapter 4, Henry is riding a cart towards Alice's lair, when the cart is suddenly stopped by two enormous hands that poke out of the darkness...and then the mutated visage of what is unmistakably Boris rises into view.
    • Chapter 4 ends with Henry having to fight a monstrous Boris made by Alice. After killing it, Alice tries to strangle him only to be killed by...another, less corrupted version of Alice with her own Boris.
  • The ending in The Binding of Isaac where Isaac finds his own dead body in the chest. While the other endings were dark before, this one was the point where the true plot really began to reveal itself and was the start of many fan theories until the Rebirth DLC endings put everything into perspective.
    • As there are plenty of items that change Isaac's appearance and almost all of them are played for Black Comedy, his face when picking up the Torn Photograph is particularly miserable and is not Played for Laughs. His father was ripped out of the photo after he and Isaac's mother go through a divorce. And to make that even worse? Isaac not only blames himself for being the reason, but he is Driven to Suicide because of it. Ouch.
  • BioShock Infinite
    • When Booker reunites with Elizabeth in Comstock House, he approaches her and sees that she's actually an old woman, revealing this to be a Bad Future.
    • At the end of the game, when Booker relives the time he sold his daughter and unsuccessfully tried to get her back, as the tear closes, it cuts off her pinky finger, revealing that Anna is Elizabeth.
  • Bloodborne gives us a two-fer:
    • The appearance of Rom, the Vacuous Spider. To elaborate, you've been spending much of the game fighting creatures in locations that wouldn't be out of place in a Gothic Horror setting: werewolves, witches, zombies, etc. But then you drop into the Moonside Lake in Byrgenwerth College and find this... thing. From here, the situation gets worse: once you defeat her, you descend into the newly-opened Yahar'gul, and you see dozens of Amygdalas crawling all over the city like maggots on a corpse. This is when you realize what you've been playing is in fact a Cosmic Horror Story.
    • Taking the back door to Iosefka's Clinic and discovering Celestial Emissaries lingering about, including a dead one strapped to an operating table, followed by Iosefka telling you to leave at once and possibly attempting to kill you. It hits doubly hard if you've been sending all the civilians there, as you realize you're partially responsible for what's happened here.
  • The image of a lifeless Earth in Blue Planet: Age of Aquarius after it's been bombarded into oblivion by the Shivans.
  • At the end of Act 1 of Broken Age, the camera shows Vella lying on the beach after defeating Mog Chothra, only for Shay to stumble out of the monster, revealing that his "spaceship" was Mog Chothra all along.
  • In the post-credits scene in Castlevania: Lords of Shadow, Zobek finds Gabriel, who has become a vampire and calls himself Dracula, hiding in a church. The two of them have a very brief fight which ends with Gabriel being flung through a stained glass window...and landing in the middle of a street in a modern day city.
  • In Chrono Trigger, after Crono is disintegrated by Lavos, you need to rearrange your party. It's the same screen that you've been using the entire game, but Crono is gone, and you can put anyone in the top slot. It's a pretty shocking moment of comprehension.
  • After a boss-fight in Dead Rising 3 Nick's friend Diego brings him into a museum that is used to explain the plot of the first 2 games, and points to an exhibit of a zombie that caused an outbreak in 2007. Diego points out one minor detail in the picture, which the game zooms in on. The zombie has a the same place and manner of Nick, the main character.
  • Fallout:
    • Fallout 2, the player has the GECK, the village is saved. And the second you step foot into Arroyo, you initiate conversation with a dying, badly wounded Hakunin. Your quest isn't over yet; the real fight is still to come.
    • Fallout 3, the player has been hearing Enclave radio broadcasts throughout the game, but no one has seen the Enclave itself for years, the radio broadcasts are obviously pre-recorded loops, and the Enclave was destroyed years ago in Fallout 2 anyway. Then, while helping your father prepare Project Purity to activate, you look out the drainage grate you're in and see a vertibird, the Enclave's signature mode of transport, land on the catwalk outside, and troops in their signature black Powered Armor march out. The Enclave isn't just still active, they're here.
      • In the final questline, when Liberty Prime is sent into battle as the Brotherhood of Steel prepares to assault the Purifier with more Enclave than ever swarming the area. You head outside and prepare yourself for the most epic battle you've faced yet. And you see Prime standing outside the Citadel. After just standing there motionless for a moment or two, Prime will be attacked by an Enclave vertibird. His response is to finally move to face them and unleash his Eye Beams on it, destroying the aircraft. It's the first shot in the Curb-Stomp Battle you are about to witness as Prime begins his march obliterating all in his path.
    • The appearance of the Prydwen in Fallout 4 is accompanied with fanfare and a good Oh, Crap! from your companion, if you have one. Rightly so, considering that this is the strongest the Brotherhood of Steel has been in any Fallout game: the west coast Brotherhood has been declining ever since their first appearance in Fallout, and while the east coast Brotherhood was powerful in Fallout 3, having custody of many suits of power armor, the Pentagon, and a giant death robot, this is a further expansion of their power. It also marks the beginning of the War for the Commonwealth, as the Sole Survivor's attention turns away from hunting down their spouse's killer (having killed him just moments before) and begins to focus on the rising conflict between the Institute, Brotherhood, and Railroad.
  • At the end of the first FEAR game, the camera pans down from the image of Alma's second birth to show her medical file, which lists her name as "Alma Wade." That one shot changes the context of 90% of the previous game.
  • At the end of Final Fantasy XIII-2, the time gates are closing, the paradox is resolved, Hope's Cocoon is ascending, and Noel, Serah, and Mog are safe...and then you see Etro's Gate shining in Serah's eyes.
  • Fire Emblem:
    • In Fire Emblem Awakening, Chrom is attacked by an assassin, but the mysterious woman identifying herself as Marth leaps in and blocks the blow. This isn't the Wham Shot, though. It comes just after she calls Chrom "father." She offers to reveal her identity to him, and we see the Brand of the Exalt in her left eye. The exact same location as Chrom's baby daughter, Lucina.
    • In Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia, you can battle your way through a post-game Bonus Dungeon called the Thabes Labyrinth. When you reach the bottom and make for the door to the Bonus Boss, it is marked with the brand of Grima, the Big Bad of Fire Emblem Awakening. The Thabes Labyrinth chronicles his origin story.
  • At the very ending of Five Nights at Freddy's: Sister Location, after defeating the night's hardest difficulty, you end up getting a cutscene in which an unfamiliar voice talks to their father about a plan they apparently followed. The voice also mentions that "they" mistook him for his father, and that he should be dead but isn't. He ends by saying that he's been living in shadows, and is coming to find his father. The whole time, the footage has been showing what appears to be a burned-out building. Then, in the very last half-second, a figure steps into frame: it's Springtrap. The next game revealed that it's not actually him speaking, but regardless, it's still a Wham Shot because it reveals that Springtrap survived Fazbear's Fright burning down.
    • The spinoff game Freddy Fazbear's Pizzeria Simulator somehow manages to top even that. At first, the game seems like the sort of 8-bit troll game that Scott Cawthon has become famous for, with simplistic gameplay and cheerful music. Then on level 4, the game begins to glitch badly, with the screen eventually going black...only to fade back in on a realistically rendered shot of Baby, now in a horribly damaged form, apparently deactivated and sitting across from the player at a desk. Ladies and gentlemen, Five Nights At Freddy's 6 has arrived.
  • At E3 2016, a trailer of a then unnamed game shows a boy being ordered by his father to hunt. The audience initially expect this to be an ordinary father-and-son game until the father turns out to be Kratos, now living in the period of the Norse Mythology, revealing that the game is God of War (PS4), a new installment in the God of War Series.
  • In Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, CJ catches a glimpse of Tenpenny, Pulaski, Big Smoke and Ryder walking out of a garage with a green Sabre in it, revealing that the latter two betrayed the Grove Street Families and that all of them were involved with killing CJ's mother.
  • Halo 4: In the third level "Forerunner", Master Chief activates a satellite to contact the Infinity, but he unwittingly ends up freeing the Didact, a living Forerunner.
  • Hometown Story:
    • When you first meet the detective that eventually moves into town, the mayor happens to have a watch with a quite unusal shape missing. The detective fails spectacularly to help, then decides to give up, and pulls a watch out of his coat to check the time. The watch happens to be the missing one, that the detective found on the ground on his way to the village.
    • The town has a sentient scarecrow who constantly talks about how he's stuck in the same spot. If you give him the broom he requests, he jump out of enthusiasm, revealing that the part of him that looks like a thick pole buried in the groud actually works more like a foot. The fact that he's more mobile than he claims to be becomes important later.
  • Killer7 gets one at the end of the Alter-Ego chapter. The first two chapters have set up Kun Lan and the mystery of the Heaven's Smiles as very important, but then for the next three chapters they kind of take a back-seat as the Smiths deal with stuff like a crazy cult leader, another assassin, and team of super-sentai parodies. The very last shot at the end of the chapter is Kun Lan over a red screen, reaching for the camera, to remind you he's still around, and warn you that the next chapter is all about him and the Smiles again.
    • The very next chapter, Smile, has one at the very beginning, where you enter Harman's room to find Samantha dead and Harman nowhere in sight.
  • Kingdom Hearts
    • Kingdom Hearts II: Just before the Final Boss, a device the real Ansem the Wise was using explodes, and the light from the device purifies Ansem, Seeker of Darkness, from Riku, which causes his real form to be restored. If that's not the wham shot, then the end of the cutscene is when the party select pops up...with Riku as the Guest-Star Party Member, which came as a surprise for first-time players. Especially since other guests joined much earlier in their arcs.
    • Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep: After the clash with Master Xehanort, Aqua takes Ventus' comatose body back to the Land of Departure, and then uses Eraqus' Keyblade to rearrange the world in order to ensure that nobody but her will ever be able to find him. And as she's leaving the world, the scene zooms out to reveal that the rearranged Land of Departure is a familiar location: Castle Oblivion.
    • In the epilogue of Kingdom Hearts III, the Foretellers emerge in the Keyblade Graveyard to find themselves greeted by a figure in a black hood carrying the No Name Keyblade and waiting next to the mysterious black box. Upon being identified as Luxu, the figure acknowledges that he hasn't gone by that name in a long time and removes their reveal the face of Xigbar.
  • Kirby:
    • Kirby's Return to Dream Land: After defeating HR-D3 in the True Arena, the next boss image shows the shadowed face of a boss not yet fought: Galacta Knight, marking the first true surprise boss in the franchise.
    • Kirby: Triple Deluxe: After defeating Sectonia DX as King Dedede, the latter strikes a victory pose. As he's doing so, the Dimension Mirror shows up and spits out Dedede's Mirror World counterpart. After his defeat, Dark Meta Knight shows up to fight after a ten year absence.
    • Kirby: Planet Robobot:
      • After doing enough damage to the Access Ark, its exterior shatters, revealing the face of Galactic Nova, another AI with world-destroying powers. Doubly shocking as, up until now, connections to previous games' plots had been reserved to the EX modes, which were stated by Word of God to be Alternate Continuities.
      • In this game's EX mode, Meta Knightmare Returns, after the defeat of Haltmann 2.0, Star Dream awakens and tests Meta Knight with the clone of another sword master. While everyone expected Galacta Knight to show up again at this point, someone completely different shows up: Dark Matter Blade. As there hasn't been a main series boss fight with this incarnation of Dark Matter since its debut and references to the "Dark Matter Trilogy" being rare to begin with, the entire fandom was surprised to the point where, when Galacta Knight did show up two fights later, it was seen as something of a letdown, especially by older fans.
    • Kirby Star Allies has a truly spectacular double whammy during the battle with the final boss, Void Termina. After defeating the first couple forms, Kirby and his friends are pulled inside Void Termina's body once again to fight its true form. What is its true form, you may ask? It's an amorphous, hovering pink sphere with three dots forming a face...specifically, a face identical to Kirby. This is only compounded as the battle goes on and Void Termina takes another familiar face: that of Dark Matter.
  • Midna's tear cracking the Mirror of Twilight at the end of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. It may have been briefly foreshadowed during the game, but not long before she does it, she says "As long as that mirror's around, we could meet again."
  • Life Is Strange has two. One at the end of Episode 3 where we see Chloe in a wheelchair, and one at the end of Episode 4, with the reveal of Mr. Jefferson as the true Big Bad.
  • In Mega Man X8, Axl's ending sees him being rendered comatose after a Last Breath Bullet from Lumine. As he was carried back to Earth, a fragment of what Lumine attacked him with is seen in his forehead crystal, shining ominously. Unfortunately, nothing ever came out of it; the next chronological game, Mega Man X: Command Mission, never alluded to the event, and the series is currently defunct.
  • In Jak 3: Wastelander, the cutscene "The Strange Gets Stranger" has a Precursor statue opening, revealing that the Precursors are ottsels. The characters present react accordingly.
  • In the Japanese version of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, due to censorship, every cyborg in the game bleeds white blood, with one exception: Samuel Rodrigues, who is shown bleeding red blood, revealing that the character in question barely has any cybernetic enhancements. In the international release, every character has red blood, so Parrot Exposition is used to reveal this.
  • Minecraft: Story Mode: In the first episode, Jesse finds a book documenting the legend of the Order and reads an extract from it. As s/he reads, we get a flashback that seems to be the same as the opening cinematic...except that this time the Round Table Shot continues past Soren and lands on Ivor, revealing that he was once part of the Order.
  • Modern Warfare 2
    • The missions "Of Their Own Accord" and "Whiskey Hotel" have a one-two punch. The former starts out in a darkened bunker being pounded by enemy fire, with—for once—none of the standard green text telling the player where the mission takes place. Then the player exits the bunker and sees the US Capitol in flames, and the text helpfully informs you that you're in Washington, DC in the midst of a Russian invasion. Then the latter manages to top that, when you reach the rendezvous point Whiskey Hotel and realize that it isn't really a hotel: it's the White House, which is being swarmed by Russian troops. note 
    • "Second Sun" abruptly switches to the POV of a nameless astronaut aboard the International Space Station right after Captain Price hijacks a Russian nuclear submarine and launches a warhead in the previous level. Everything seems pretty tranquil up in space...until you notice the warhead heading towards you. You can only watch helplessly as it detonates in the atmosphere, and the lights on the Eastern Seaboard of the United States start to blink out.
  • In Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate, normally when you complete a quest, including ones that increase your Hunter Rank, you spawn at the entrance to the gathering hall or town that you took the quest in. However, after completing the Urgent Quest to rank up to G3 (a Lao-Shan Lung), that doesn't happen. Instead, you're face to face with the Pub Manager while tense music plays, while she informs you of a new monster that has started terrorizing the surrounding regions (the Ahtal-ka).
  • In the second generation of Phantasy Star III, you have to take a spaceship to one of the two moons orbiting your world (whichever moon you travel to depends on your hero in this generation). When you take off in the spaceship, you find out that you're not living on a planet, but that the game takes place on a Generation Ship.
  • Pokémon
  • Shin Megami Tensei: Persona:
    • In Persona 2: Eternal Punishment's opening sequence, Takahisa Kandori (Big Bad of the first game in the franchise) appears on-screen briefly. Given that he's been dead for three years at this point, this is immensely disturbing.
    • In Persona 3, after defeating The Hanged Man, the party returns to the dorm to celebrate the fact that the Dark Hour is gone for good. But when the usual Dark Hour intro animation play the following night, you know you're in for a Wham Episode...
    • During the battle with the Killer in Persona 4, he receives the same critical hit cut-in the party normally has, revealing he has a Persona.
    • Also from Persona 4, after you rescue the third victim from the television, the fog comes in and you're confident that you succeeded. At that point, you see a cinematic showing someone else's dead body, although it's later revealed that it was just a copycat crime.
    • After the Framing Device of Persona 5, Sae Nijima leaves the interrogation room and meets with one of the player character's allies, Goro Akechi. After she dismisses him and leaves, Goro's dialogue box portrait pops up...and it's a Traitor Shot where he's showing a sinister Psychotic Smirk while demeaning Nijima, revealing his true colors as The Mole that sold out the heroes.
    • Later in Persona 5, the protagonist initially appears to fail to summon his Ultimate Persona. Then we get a shot of something lowering itself from the heavens. The wham comes when we see the whole thing, and realise that the combined support of an entire metropolis is enough to create a Persona that's bigger than a skyscraper.
    • Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse:
      • You defeat the Divine Powers at Tsukiji Konganji, and when you go to sleep, the cutscene of the current moon phase still shows up.
      • So everyone's celebrating now that the Divine Powers, Merkabah, and Lucifer are gone, surely only good things can happen from here on out right? Dagda informs you that "the show's about to start," and when he disappears from your view, the people who were celebrating moments ago are all collapsed on the floor.
  • In the fan game Story of the Blanks, based on My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, the viewer (and Applebloom) gets quite the Wham Shot when they look into the fireplace and discover the charred remains of a pony skeleton. This is one of the first clues (but definitely the most jarring) that Sunny Town is not at all the bright, friendly town that it seems.
  • Spec Ops: The Line: The shot of Lugo hanging from a noose surrounded by the lynch mob in Chapter 13 and the real Konrad's dead body in Chapter 15.
  • The end of Stage 1 of Time Crisis 4 shows the dog tag of the defeated Marcus Black, who is revealed to be a U.S. military officer...and so are the rest of the terrorists that Rush, Giorgio, and Evan have been fighting. Needless to say, Rush is pissed off.
    • In the fifth game, after defeating Keith Martin, he opens up the briefcase and reveals who the real traitor responsible for the events of the game is. Luke and Marc lean in to look at the data, looking shocked. Then Keith looks up and fires off two bullets at Luke and Marc. In Bullet Time, the bullets are shown whizzing past them, squarely striking the two knives flying towards Luke and Marc and sending them skittering harmlessly to the ground. The camera then pans to Robert, revealing him to be the Big Bad.
  • Until Dawn has the psycho removing his mask. Whose face is revealed? Josh, who was previously seen sliced in half by a sawblade.
  • Valkyria Chronicles 4: Every time the medic is called to extract a downed unit, you get an unskippable cutscene of Karen running onto the battlefield. In one mission, this cutscene is abruptly cut short when she apparently gets shot. It just grazed her leg, but the war-criminal sniper has to be neutralized before she can come back for the wounded again.
  • The Witness: Arguably the game's final puzzle happens just before the end of the Golden Ending - a puzzle that turns on a light in a darkened room. The room is revealed to be impressively photorealistic - because it's actually represented by an FMV you control by walking backward and forward. Lying on the couch is a motionless figure with a sheet over it, hooked up to an IV and lying near a computer monitor. To find out who the figure is, simply walk to the end of the path...
  • World of Warcraft:
    • As the Alliance and Horde forces march into battle in the Jade Forest, Lorewalker Cho completes his restoration project. He then reacts in horror as the finished third image shows a Sha rising, signifying that the Alliance and Horde's war will empower the Sha, which feed on negative emotions.
    • In the Alliance version of the ending for Mists of Pandaria, after Garrosh's defeat, Varian walks up to the Horde leaders and demands to speak with their Warchief. The crowd parts and reveals Vol'jin, rather than Thrall.
  • In Chapter 5 of Xenoblade Chronicles X, Cross pushes Tatsu out of the way of a massive energy blast and is sent flying. After they land, they try to clutch their left arm in pain but realise that it's been blown clean off. Instead of what they expected to see, they find a sparking, mechanical stump.
  • Combines with The Stinger in Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon: After trying to save Zangetsu, the three other heroes are unfortunately forced to kill him. But after the credits, Zangetsu awakens in the afterlife...which is apparently some kind of cyberpunk world far removed from the world he came from.
  • At the end of Stage 2-0note  of Cho Ren Sha 68k, the boss you just defeated goes out in an explosion. It's the exact same explosion that you see when you start Stage 1-1note . Coupling with Wham Line, "STAGE 1" then appears as the explosion goes off.

    Visual Novels 
  • Ace Attorney, being plot-heavy and famous for its plot twists, is prone to this:
    • At the start of the fourth case of the first game, you see someone apparently being shot deadnote , at which point Edgeworth is the one shown holding the gun. No, he isn't the killer, but this shot goes to show that this case is far more personal and has higher stakes than the previous one.
    • In Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies we have Athena surrounded by five black Psyche-Locks. Keep in mind that the only other person in the series to have those was beyond redemption. The original shot of Black Psyche-Locks from Apollo Justice counts too.
    • In the opening of Case 3-3 of the original trilogy has the judge apparently at the end of a trial, about to have the defendant found guilty. The prosecutor, Winston Payne, gloats about his victory...and then the camera cuts to the defense's bench, revealing Phoenix himself standing there. It quickly turns out to be an imposter, but still, that's one way to keep the player on their toes.
    • Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice:
      • In Case 2, just before the end of the investigation, we get a whammy when entering the Wright Anything Agency: the place is full of red tapes reading "REPOSSESSED"; this is because Trucy is in debt with Roger Retinz (of 3 million dollars) and the man is getting his money back by seizing and selling the office. Apollo and Athena are quite shocked, understandably.
      • Case 3 has a big one, and of the "family relationship" type. Dhurke, the leader of the rebels in Khura'in, has two sons: Nahyuta Sahdmadhi (yes, that jerk prosecutor you've faced) and Apollo Justice (though only adopted).
  • Snatcher:
    • At the start of the game, Gillian receives a Distress Call from another Junker, Jean Jack Gibson, about a probable Snatcher in an abandoned factory. Shortly after you arrive, you meet Jean Jack Gibson...after his head has been torn off by the Snatcher.
    • Three in a row in Freddy Nielsen's apartment. First, the discovery of sunscreen, used by the Snatchers to protect their artificial skin. This is followed by Lisa Nielsen without the scratches on her face covered, revealing her as a Snatcher. And when the lights of the apartment turn back on and Gillian returns to the apartment, Metal tells him to look in the mirror...revealing Freddy Nielsen standing right behind Gillian.
    • After uncovering a strange Chinese form in an abandoned hospital linked to the Snatchers, Gillian manages to decode the name on the form: Benson, revealing the possibility that either Junker engineer Harry Benson or Junker chief Benson Cunningham has been snatched.
    • When Gillian discovers four decomposed skeletons in the morgue of a Snatcher-controlled hospital, Metal Gear runs virtual facial reconstructions on them. The first two are the aforementioned Freddy and Lisa Nielsen. The third, Chin Shu Oh, confirms their suspicions of him being a Snatcher. The fourth? Benson Cunningham.
  • Virtue's Last Reward has this in spades. Primarily due to each separate timeline having differences the player wouldn't be expecting.
    • In most routes, when you enter the AB Room for voting the first time around, you find a dead body. This in itself creates its own wham shot in the Cyan set of routes, when you enter the room expecting the body to be there but it's completely empty. Unless you have played the Cyan routes first, in which case you only experience the first whammy.
    • Entering Room 2 of the Crew Quarters and finding either Alice's body, Luna's body, or in some routes Alice and Luna's bodies.
    • In Clover's route, entering the Infirmary, and finding Tenmyouji, Alice, Luna, Clover, Phi, and Dio all dead in a bloody pile.
    • In Luna's route, when Luna appears outside the AB room late in the route despite seemingly having been murdered earlier.
    • Alice's route, when the AB game results show that Alice's vote was "betray", despite her seemingly having not even voted.
    • When the results of Tenmyouji and Alice's first AB round votes are shown on your second run-through of their respective routes, and their votes have changed between the timelines.
    • K's route ending, where Sigma pulls of K's mask revealing K's face to be Sigma's face.
    • Sigma's reflection in the water, revealing that he's actually got an old man's body.
    • In Luna's route, when you access the GAULEM database and Luna's picture comes up, revealing that she's a robot.
    • In Sigma's route, when Sigma looks down at his hand and sees it's bleeding white blood.
    • Tenmyouji's photo being shown to be a photo of Akane Kurashiki.
    • K taking off his suit in Phi's route revealing that it's Akane Kurashiki inside.
  • In Doki Doki Literature Club!, the game hits you hard when you find Sayori having committed suicide in her room. Then it gives you a twofer when you return to the main menu and find that both her character portrait and the new game option are heavily corrupted, both foreshadowing the events to come and that the player had not reached a bad ending.
  • Hatoful Boyfriend has the ending of Anghel's route: an Interface Screw revealing that the game has temporarily become a fantasy JRPG. It's often cited as one of the coolest parts of the game.
  • Super Danganronpa 2: At the end of Chapter Five, Hinata is left in a state of shock that lasts a whole day due to the outcome of the chapter's trial. The next day, he comes out of his cottage, and is greeted by Nanami, who died in the previous trial. And then the world gets seriously weird...

    Web Animation 
  • Mystery Skulls Animated:
    • After the camera zooms into a painting Mystery notices, showing events before the video, the one driving the van is a heretofore unseen member of the group, a human Lewis.
    • The Reveal that Lewis was killed by a possessed Arthur turns the first half of the animation from a funny Shout-Out to a complete tragedy.
    • In "Freaking Out," there's a shot of Arthur's computer showing different locations (including his uncle's auto shop). There are multiple pictures of Lewis; some of them are crossed out, while one picture (along with one of Ghost Lewis) has question marks next to it. This seems to indicate that not only did Arthur not recognize Lewis as a ghost, he doesn't even know Lewis is dead.
  • The Rise of the Mushroom Kingdom flash series starts when Mario is killed by a Bullet Bill, causing Luigi to go after Bowser to avenge his brother's death. At the end of part two, Luigi visits Mario's grave, a Bullet Bill just misses him, and Wart is revealed to be the true culprit. Unfortunately, enough viewers couldn't put the pieces together that the frustrated creator had to put up a message explaining what was going on.
  • There she is!!: The end of step 3, where a rock gets thrown through Nabi's window (setting up both the plot and tone of the next step).
  • X-Ray & Vav: At the end of "Coal & Order," the man in the mental asylum, whom our heroes must go to for help, turns around – it's the Mad King.
  • Animator vs. Animation: At the end of "The Virus", the first episode of "Animator vs. Animation Shorts", just when ViraBot is about to kill The Second Coming, a portal appears. After some time passes, The Chosen One comes out of the portal to help the animator and the stick figures to destroy the virus.
  • Sword Art Online Abridged: Like with the original series above, the purple 'Immortal Object' popup (which usually indicates scenery and other things players aren't supposed to destroy) is this, twice. First, the popup appears over Yui when she easily defeats a powerful monster, and the second time it appears over Heathcliff when Kirito attacks him after connecting his Shout Outs to Kayaba's.

    Web Comics 
  • In Gifts of Wandering Ice, the scene where Rita learns what the legendary black iceberg really was.
  • The Order of the Stick:
  • In Secret of Mana Theater, during the fight with the Spiky Tiger, Faun draws the sword she claimed Elinee had stolen, revealing that she had stolen it and was manipulating him into helping her rescue Dyluck. The significance of doing so is not lost on Seth, and he becomes quite upset.
  • Narbonic: in the last comic of the arc "Professor Madblood and the Everlasting Ices of the North", Dave looks at a holographic projection of a quote from "Alice in Wonderland", and his glasses clear because he has just Gone Mad From The Revelation that he is really a mad scientist and Helen has been experimenting on him for the entire run of the comic.
  • Housepets!:
    • "Hand to Hand" (Nov. 13, 2013): Jata, the VERY MUSCULAR crown Prince of Feraga, has just laid waste to his own arranged wedding, knocked his forced-bride-to-be into the pool, and is currently beating the stuffing out of his own bodyguards (who have turned on him because of his insensitivity to the feelings of his own bride) with no sign of stopping until Uncle Deadeye, the mute bodyguard seen in two previous strips, stops Jata's fist from connecting with the back of Miles' head, SMILING as he does it! We then cut away while someone in the audience says "Wow, I didn't know cats could bend like THAT."
    • End of Year Eight (June 3rd, 2016): Keene Milton is revealed to still be alive, but regains consciousness inside his limo, which has apparently been driven off a pier, is rapidly sinking, and his chauffeur has gone AWOL.
  • In The Dragon Doctors, Chapter 21 sees Elka and Greg walk into the demons' headquarters and see Shelinda the Cyber-Shaman (whom most would have assumed was dead centuries earlier) hooked up to a hideous array of machines.
  • In Agents of the Realm, the second-to-last page of chapter 3 reveals that not only Jordan already works as an agent, but she also cooperates with The Dragon, Ruby.
  • Erfworld: The final panel of Book 3 Page 117, shows Parson in Charlescomm livery.
  • Nebula: The final panel of comic 17, showing Pluto post-transformation into a Humanoid Abomination very similar to Ceres, having grown another pair of arms and having two thumbs on each hand like Black Hole.
  • We Are The Wyrecats reveals through some surveillance footage that Lamar, one of the former members of the Wyre Cat team, is responsible for stealing military-grade enhancements and the mooks K.A. has been dealing with have been part of his forces.
  • In Beyond Bloom the story seems to be grounded in a realistic Earth setting (aside from one detail). While mid conversation, this happens. A dragon interrupts the scene, leaving protagonists to wonder what the creature even was, and completely changing the course of the story.
  • In El Goonish Shive, the sudden appearance of Nanase's change of hairstyle and wardrobe completely changes the dynamic between Nanase and Ellen which leads to their first argument as a couple.

    Web Original 
  • In Noob, one of the characters attacks a enemy player that seems to be present near his group just by chance, only to have his guild master (that he hadn't seen in weeks) block his sword.
  • To Boldly Flee:
    Nostalgia Critic: Well, I might as well check my email.
    [he opens his laptop and looks at the open Word document]
    By Doug and Rob Walker
  • At the end of the Christmas 2013 episode, The Angry Video Game Nerd finds a good Spider-man game...that has LJN's logo on it.
  • Part 6 of Polo Quest has two in the same update. First we see what Penn looks like without her contacts, (accompanied with a noticeable shift in narration style), then we see her through the eyes of everyone else, discovering the database's title for her: "biological reincarnation of the Sapphire Emperor".
  • Ruby Quest has some good ones.
    • Early on, Stitches' full body is shown- and it's a mass of blood and guts, marking the quest's transition into horror.
    • Much later, Tom finds Upper Lab B's light switch- revealing that it's absolutely covered in fleshy growths connected to its prisoner, Tom Nook.
    • The second-to-last panel reveals that Tom Nook was not the extremely dangerous Subject #6. Ruby's friend Tom was Subject #6.
  • Ruby Quest's Spiritual Successor Nan Quest is no slouch in this regard either.
  • Todd in the Shadows is all set to watch the movie that One-Hit Wonderland subject "St. Elmo's Fire" originates from...then he sees who the director is.
  • Vinesauce Tomodachi Life has a view:
    • Early in episode 47, Vinny casually browses through the apartments as usual — and then comes upon HOTDOG, an islander who was removed 25 episode prior.
    • The long-awaited 50th episode begins with the news, as usual. Except the newscaster is someone we've never seen before (later revealed to be Dana Scully). Then it cuts to the islanders' thoughts, and the first one up is Fox Mulder, who had ''also never been seen before. Following him is Wario, who was assimilated and assumed dead in the previous episode.
    • Episode 54 sees Vinny choose one of two islanders to be removed by having them fight in Super Smash Bros.. Once it's over, he (obviously) returns to the character select screen. And then moves Player 1's cursor over Pit, revealing that Vlinny (the winner) isn't out of the frying pan yet.
  • Everyman HYBRID, when it starts, is a fitness series where the Slender Man keeps appearing in the background. All that changes in Episode 6 - Healthy Eating, in which the ruse is revealed. They see the actor that plays Slender Man behaving strangely through a window, and seek him out, only to find he's not playing Slender Man. And then, they hear something behind them and turn around.
  • Don't Hug Me I'm Scared:
    • Halfway through 5, Duck Guy wakes up in a mysterious dark room. Eventually, we see that his body had been sliced open, and his organs are being processed into canned food product.
    • After all the madness dies down, there's only one thing left in the kitchen: Yellow Guy, now obese, having eaten all of the cans containing Duck Guy.
    • In 6, Red Guy walking up to the machine and seeing Yellow Guy, still in his "lesson", on the monitor; this reveals the entire series had taken place in a Lotus-Eater Machine.
    • A few seconds later in "Don't Hug Me I'm Scared 6" sees the reappearance of Tony, followed by several other teachers who at this point had only appeared in one episode each.
    • A third one in the sixth episode is the appearance of a long yellow hand, belonging to the father of the Yellow Guy.
  • 17776:
    • The very beginning has a meta one. Upon first viewing, it initially looks like an ordinary SB Nation article about the future of American football (albeit with a number of discrepancies, if you can look). Shortly after loading, however, the page's text abruptly expands in size, completely blotting out the screen with black...and then the story proper begins.
    • During the first chapter, the main character (Nine) has no clue what or where they are. Not long before it ends, their friend Ten tells them to take a picture of themselves. The resulting photo is of a space probe, shortly leading into a Wham Line clarifying that Nine and Ten are actually sentient space probes.
  • Daisy Brown
    • "Artistic video" starts out as a simple video about Daisy drawing, until Alan shows up with realistic pictures of her doing so. Daisy is appropriately disturbed, since it means he's no longer blind, and he's been deceiving her about it for who knows how long.
  • Atop the Fourth Wall:
    • While the King of Worms is probing through Linkara's soul, he sees flashes of Linkara's previous encounters with villains. However, these flashes soon settle on a shot of the Plot Hole, which then transitions to Lewis in his apartment, filming a scene. Then he starts laughing...
    • From Ultimate Power #4: Linkara with The Entity's pixel eyes.
    • From Mr. T and the T-Force #4, The Stinger, which sees the tenth anniversary storyline kicked off by Linkara and Linksano seeing someone who resembles Linkara in a tattered version of his original outfit.

    Western Animation 
  • Adventure Time:
    • In the episode "Too Old", Lemongrab walks on screen, now morbidly obese. Next to him, we see Lemongrab 2, whose legs have been destroyed so badly that he needs a machine to move around. He is also missing half of his head and looking severely emaciated.
    • At the end of "Lemonhope", the titular character is seen Walking the Earth in what is implied to be 1000 years in the future...through the futuristic ruins of the Candy Kingdom, implying that it will destroy itself just like the human world.
    • The end of "Evergreen" shows A Comet of Doom heading towards Ooo.
  • The Amazing World of Gumball: In "The Oracle", Gumball, Darwin, and Anais discover that Banana Joe's mom's paintings can apparently predict the future...such as one showing Gumball naked in the mall surrounded by angry citizens. Okay, but the episode ends with Banana Barbara painting this last picture, showing the Watterson family running through a crumbling Elmore (or maybe the Void) with a dark shadow looming overhead, implying...well, something highly dramatic (a Drama Bomb Season Finale, perhaps...?) will likely happen later in the season at least.
  • The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes! episode "Who Do You Trust?" ends with the Skrull counterpart of Captain America telling his queen that he successfully planted paranoia and mistrust into some of the most powerful members. The Skrull queen comes out of the shadows, and reveals she has taken on the human identity of Mockingbird.
  • DuckTales (2017): At the end of the first episode, Dewey takes another look at the painting of Scrooge and Donald in their adventuring heyday and notices a loose tear covering part of it. He lifts it to reveal a third duck in the scene: Della Duck, Donald's sister and the boys' mother (who, at this point, had barely ever been mentioned in the cartoons). As wonderful Book-Ends, the end of the season finale pans up to the Moon, where we find out that Della Duck's been living there since she disappeared years ago.
  • In the Ed, Edd n Eddy Grand Finale movie, Edd is scolding Eddy's brother for beating up Eddy when we see from Edd's POV, an extreme close-up of Eddy's brother giving him an extremely terrifying Slasher Smile, revealing him as a sadistic sociopath and that there's no stopping him.
  • Futurama:
    • In the episode "Leela's Homeworld", Leela looks into the sky knowing her lost alien parents are out in space somewhere. The camera pans up towards the heavens, then quickly pans down into the sewer gutter to reveal Leela's parents, who are really mutants.
    • Bender's Big Score has one. After Lars's Heroic Sacrifice, Fry and Leela look at his corpse to reveal Fry's Bender tattoo, meaning he's Fry's time paradox duplicate.
    • "Fry and the Slurm Factory" shows the secret ingredient of Slurm: it comes from the ass of a giant worm queen.
      Fry: That's the secret ingredient of Slurm!?
      Leela: That's the only ingredient of Slurm!
    • "The Problem with Popplers" is this: if you leave these tasty snacks lying around too long, they wake up, smiling. They're larval Omicronians.
  • Gravity Falls has quite a few. Here are some of the ones that affect the entire series:
    • At the end of "The Hand That Rocks the Mabel", Gideon looks at a book with a page describing the magic amulet he'd used earlier in the episode, then closes it...revealing that it's a journal just like Dipper's, only the number on the hand is 2.
    • At the end of "Gideon Rises", Grunkle Stan goes into his secret room behind the Mystery Shack's vending machine. After reaching a desk surrounded by complicated machinery he pulls out a the number 1 journal. Showing that Stan knew all along about the supernatural elements of Gravity Falls, and was only pretending to be oblivious.
    • At the end of "Northwest Manner Mystery", McGucket's repaired laptop shows a timer counting down to the apocalypse. With less than 24 hours remaining.
    • At the end of "Not What He Seems", after an entire episode questioning the motives behind Grunkle Stan's actions, and even his very identity as Stan Pines, the real Stanford Pines, Grunkle Stan's twin brother and author of the journals, exits the portal.
  • Green Lantern: The Animated Series Grand Finale. Hal Jordan, on a hunch, goes over all the known uninhabited star systems and the systems that Aya destroyed. They overlay exactly.
  • Justice League Unlimited episode "The Return". Seemingly about the return of the AMAZO android, but the ending sees the reappearance of Hawkgirl, last seen leaving the League after "Starcrossed".
    • The Reveal of Cadmus' members is a Continuity Cavalcade of the DC Animated Universe, but the fact that Professor Emil Hamilton, one of Superman's strongest allies is a member is a shock.
    • During the attempted and seemingly successful revival of Brainiac in the penultimate episode, it seems it's all gone as planned, the smoke is clearing...and instead of Brainiac, both Lex and the audience see a familiar, grey-skinned and red-eyed visage: Darkseid came back instead.
  • King of the Hill: In the episode "Megalo-Dale", Dale is hired by Hank to deal with what appears to be a rat problem at the Megalo-Mart. Dale instead believes that Chuck Mangione is trespassing in the store. But two things prove Dale right: one is Boomhauer seeing Chuck while spinning on a gyroscope, and other is when they see the exits to the Megalo-Mart blocked off by vending machines, revealing there is someone in the store.
  • "The Last Stand", the Grand Finale of The Legend of Korra, manages this in its final shot, with previously "merely" Heterosexual Life-Partners Korra and Asami turning to each other, Holding Hands and sharing a soft Held Gaze as they teleport off to a spirit world vacation, also retroactively coloring much of the previous two books as flat-out Homoerotic Subtext.
  • Looney Tunes: Duck Amuck has the final shot, after Daffy demands the animator show himself. The animator closes a door on Daffy, the camera zooms out, and...
    Bugs: Heh heh heh...ain't I a stinker?
  • Miraculous Ladybug:
    • In the episode "The Collector", Hawk Moth is about to send out one of his akumas like usual...but the akuma stops before leaving his lair, indicating that he plans to evilize himself.
    • A few seconds later, Hawk Moth detransforms into his true identity, Gabriel Agreste.
    • "Gorizilla" ends with a shot of a strange, mausoleum-looking room beneath the Agreste mansion. Furthermore, the framing of the shot implies that Gabriel's missing wife Emilie is inside the casket.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • In the season 2 Christmas Episode, we have the first appearance of the Windigos; they come right out of nowhere and are the first sign that there's more to the ponies' strife than just some bad weather.
    • In the season 3 finale "Magical Mystery Cure", Twilight emerges back in Ponyville after having a spell cast on her. She emerges with a pair of wings, marking her as an alicorn princess.
    • Season 5 has one in "Crusaders of the Lost Mark", when all three of the Cutie Mark Crusaders begin a Transformation Sequence due to them finally getting their Cutie Marks.
    • Three in the season 6 premiere; first, baby Flurry Heart's massive wings, revealing that she's the first known naturally born alicorn ever. Second, her managing to blast a massive hole in several floors of the Crystal Palace just by sneezing. And lastly (and possibly the most shocking in the entire show), her crying so loud that she completely shatters the Crystal Heart, a powerful magic relic that protects the Crystal Empire.
  • Rick and Morty: In Close Rick-Counters of the Rick Kind we see Evil Rick's Morty remove the eyepatch containing the transmitter controlling evil Rick.
  • South Park: An episode about Stan's depression ends with him preparing to go out to play with his friends, then returning to his room, producing a hidden bottle of liquor from his drawer, and taking a shot before heading outside.
  • Star vs. the Forces of Evil:
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars: At the end of "Witches of the Mist", Mother Talzin tells Savage Opress of his long lost brother, whom Savage must now seek out. In Talzin's crystal ball, we see an image of said brother's face: It's Darth Maul.
  • Star Wars Rebels:
    • The first season finale, "Fire Across the Galaxy", has two in very quick succession. First comes the reveal of Ahsoka Tano as the enigmatic Fulcrum (though this may be YMMV depending on how much credence you gave to fans who were able to ferret out the twist after Fulcrum's first vocal appearance). The second, and definitive Wham Shot comes when Grand Moff Tarkin reveals the "alternatives" to the now-deceased Inquisitor. Cue Agent Kallus having a quiet Oh, Crap! moment as a very familiar black helmet comes into view...
    • The season 3 trailer has a long, slow reveal of a blue-skinned admiral directing the Imperial forces.
      Hera: Grand Admiral Thrawn.
  • Steven Universe:
    • "Jail Break": Two new characters, Ruby and Sapphire, meet and fuse into...Garnet?!?
    • "Catch and Release" opens with a cute scene of Steven getting ready for bed and saying good night to his stuffed animals. One of them is Peridot, who proceeds to kidnap him.
    • Steven clutching his gem at the end of an episode and saying "Human beings...", implying he is beginning to doubt his own humanity.
    • "Off Colours":
      • Lars gets caught in the center of an explosion. He slams against a wall with an audible crack, his eyes closed and his body limp, before falling thirty feet to the ground. When Steven rolls him on his back and listens for his heartbeat, he begins to cry as there is none.
      • As Steven cries over Lars' body, a tear falls on Lars's face. At first, nothing happens. But then the spot where the tear fell begins to glow pink. The glow spreads over Lars's entire body, turning his hair and skin pink. Then his hand balls into a fist, his face contorts, and he slowly sits back up.
      Lars: [slightly slurring] Ugh...Woah. What happened?
    • "A Single Pale Rose" carries enough Wham to put the entire series in a completely new light. Steven views Pearl's memories of Rose Quartz shattering Pink Diamond, providing two of these within a few minutes. First, after the shattering itself, he sees that the "Rose Quartz" responsible has Pearl's eyes and gem. Then, rewinding a few minutes to their preparation for the attack, Pearl transforms into Rose, and Rose transforms into her true form, Pink Diamond.
    • "Change Your Mind" has White Diamond successfully attempting to remove Steven's gem. After that, the gem begins to take form, showing the past forms of Pink Diamond and Rose Quartz...before becoming the shape of Steven himself. And while this is happening, we see the perspectives of both of them in a Split Screen.
  • In Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) episode "Return to New York Part 3" ends with the decapitated Shredder getting up and walking away, carrying his own head.
  • The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012) Season 2 finale kicks off with April bringing Irma to the Lair after being chased by Foot-bots. She sees the turtles and begins to twitch. Her twitching quickly gains a mechanical quality. Then, her head rises up on a mechanical pole, her eyes start to glow read, and the rest of her body unfolds, revealing an oversized Kraang droid inside.
  • In the Teen Titans episode "Birthmark", Beast Boy wonders why the next day is so important to Raven. Cut to Slade rising from the ground saying the day has begun.
  • Tiny Toons: The episode "Citizen Max", as a parody of Citizen Kane, features an extremely similar wham shot ("Acme" is the bike he and Buster rode as homeless kids, implying he wished he could take it all back). However, this is both averted and lampshaded when it's revealed that he said "Acne" and THAT was the reason for his despair upon looking into a mirror.
  • We Bare Bears: At the end of "Icy Nights II", Ice Bear picks up a locket dropped by his friend Yana, which she apparently got from her father. The locket opens up, revealing...Yuri's photo of his family from "Yuri and the Bear", revealing that Yana is the daughter of Ice Bear's old father-figure.