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Noodle Implements in live-action TV.


  • In 3rd Rock from the Sun, Tommy manages to divert the massive hotel bill they've racked up onto George Takei's account with a laptop, a modem, the keycard to their room... and a shower cap.
  • The Addams Family: You're never entirely sure how Pugsley manages to get money out of a living piggy bank.
  • The Brit Com 'Allo 'Allo! has two German officers who are turned on by the waitresses with wet celery, egg whisks and flying helmets, among others. Word of God states that they actively tried to explain how these items got used and rejected any that they succeeded with.
    Colonel: [in response to whether he wants the egg whisk] No, not the egg whisk. The electric mixer!
    Yvette: [horrified gasp]
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  • On Channel 4's Alternative Election Night (on the night of the 2010 UK election) Jimmy Carr noted that he's not allowed to say what he really thinks of the election candidates until after the results are in. We then see a message of what he'd supposedly like to say to Nick Griffin, in which every word is censored except 'car park' and 'tethered to an alligator'.
  • Tom Bergeron, when he hosted America's Funniest Home Videos, talked about how he wasn't able to swear on the show. He then launched into a bleeped-out rant that ended with him saying "and some SHEEP!"
  • Andromeda: The opening quotes of an episode described a variety of bizarre implements as follows: "Requested: One Mark V ECM unit, 1000 km of Fullerene cable, one low-yield nuclear warhead. Purpose: Surprise party for foreign dignitary. —Argosy Special Operations requisition form, CY 9512"
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  • As announced on Argumental one of John Sessions sexual fantasies involves Liza Minnelli, a crossbow and an Alsatian.
  • Babylon 5:
    • When Vir is making arrangements for the arrival of his employer's lover, The Long List of the ordered items includes some clothes for her as well as other... things. Vir is too embarrassed to say them aloud, but apparently they come with garters.
    • There was also the episode in which Ivanova has to cement a treaty with an alien race by having sex. She cons him by performing a wacky dance. After the ambassador leaves, she receives a small package with the note "Next time, my way." Inside the package? A plastic cone with small lengths of chain hanging from the rim.
  • On an episode of Barney Miller, Harris has gone undercover to make a porno. (As director, boys and girls.) At one point while the squad is watching the finished product, Inspector Luger gets a look of queasy awe and says, "I used to eat that cereal."
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  • Beakman's World: One mysterious experiment calls for a bowling ball, a chainsaw, a Macintosh apple, and a picture of Raymond Burr in short pants sitting on vinyl furniture. Then Lester interrupts to ask if he can make an experiment of his own.
  • In A Bit of Fry and Laurie, this is combined with In My Language, That Sounds Like...: the interpreter says he could demonstrate what "after-sale service" meant in his language, "if I had a goat, and four pairs of marigold washing-up gloves, a very short billiard cue, and a local radio weatherman. —But that would only hint at what the word means."
  • Blackadder:
    • Subverted in Blackadder II's "Money". We start out only hearing what Blackadder needs for his plan to get out of debt - "Some feathers, a dress, some oil, an easel, some sleeping draught, lots of paper, a prostitute and the best portrait painter in England!". Later, though, we see exactly how they were used to execute his plan.
    • In Blackadder The Third's "Ink and Incapability: "Baldrick, believe me, eternity in the company of Beelzebub and all his hellish instruments of death will be a picnic compared to five minutes with me and this pencil."
  • In Black Books:
    Bernard: I did do Belly Savalas.
    Bernard: [in a flashback, drunk] What? I can't hear you Belly Savalas! [pulls lollipop out of belly button] "Who loves you, baby?"
    Fran: You didn't do Cobumbo, did you?
    Bernard: No. [pause] I didn't have any cigars.
    • This one didn't really leave it to the imagination.
  • On The Blacklist, Reddington's Torture Technician Brimley tends to bring some odd objects into his interrogations, without them ever being shown in use. But the crowner is definitely the episode "Lady Ambrosia", where he emerges from the room escorting a live llama that he was apparently putting to use.
  • Breaking Bad. The evidence locker in the Albuquerque Police Department stores, among other things, a small red tricycle.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer does this with sex scenes in the (fictional) movie Le Banquet D'Amelia:
    Buffy: I've never actually seen... well, uh, from the title I thought it was about food.
    Angel: Well... there was food.
    Buffy: Right, the scene with the... food.
    ...
    Buffy: We can't actually do any of those things. You'd lose your soul, and besides, I don't even own a kimono.
    • A possibly slightly more innocuous example from Season 2:
      Devon: What does a girl need to do to impress you, Oz?
      Oz: It involves a feather boa and the theme from A Summer Place... I can't discuss it here.
  • Burn Notice:
    • Michael Westen is an expert at turning collections of ordinary items into implements of doom, including the old standby.
      Michael: Guns make you stupid; better to fight your wars with duct tape. Duct tape makes you smart.
    • Averted in this case, because we see exactly what he uses the duct tape for.
  • From Castle
    Esposito: What does that thing do?
    Ryan: Looks like a potato peeler.
    Esposito: Oh that is nasty.
    Castle: And illegal in 12 states.
  • The reason behind the Food Network's "last man standing" show Chopped. What dish would you make in 30 minutes that incorporates bone-in pork loin, watercress, taro root, and a melon?
  • In the second season of Chuck, Morgan is trying to get his girlfriend to not want to move in with him, enlisting the aid of Jeff and Lester to repulse her with weird hobbies and odd demands. It doesn't work, leaving them to wonder if perhaps Anna is Unrepulsable. Jeff insists that he can repulse ANY woman.
    Jeff: No, sir, not on my watch.
    Morgan: What are you suggesting?
    Jeff: You're going to need a quart of peanut oil, some bubble wrap, and as much yarn as you can find.
  • In Stephen Colbert's Christmas Special, after a long (and entirely bleeped out) explanation of what Jews use mistletoe for, Jon Stewart ends: "with a lambshank!"
    • He got back into the act on his show. While speaking about the changing of 90-year-old Canadian magazine The Beaver's name to Canada's History because the magazine's title was getting blocked by on-line porn filters, Colbert mentioned that the Canadians must not know that in America, the term "Canada's History" is a euphemism for a sex act so depraved he couldn't describe it on television. He could only mention that it involved moose antlers, a jug of maple syrup, and the Stanley Cup.
    • And again on The Daily Show. When Jon Stewart and John Oliver are discussing torture, at one point John Oliver pulls a turkey baster out of his pocket and suggests that Jon "use it on him." We never find out exactly what he means by that, although we can guess...
  • Doctor Who:
    • One of the Fourth Doctor's stock quirks is that he'd have pockets full of seemingly useless items, often toys, that he would be taking around with him for some apparently unknown purpose. Whenever he went into his pockets to get something he'd end up dredging up various knick-knacks as well.
    • At the end of "Blink", as the Doctor is dashing out, he says that things are happening, while he's carrying a bow and Martha has a quiver of arrows.
      "Things happening. Well... four things. Well... four things and a lizard."
    • In "The Impossible Astronaut", the Doctor asks for "A SWAT team ready to mobilize, street-level maps covering all of Florida, a pot of coffee, twelve Jammy Dodgers, and a fez." He's sitting in the Oval Office while saying this.
    • In the following episode, "Day of the Moon", he states that his secret weapon is Neil Armstrong's foot. It's because he's planning on planting a post-hypnotic suggestion into the Moon landing footage.
    • "Demons of the Punjab": The Doctor asks for several odd things while assembling an impromptu chemistry set to analyze some mysterious alien dust, including ox spit, chicken poo and a biscuit.
      Graham: Why a biscuit?
      The Doctor: I like biscuits.
  • The Drew Carey Show: At the Tracy Bowl I, Drew tries to humiliate Lewis.
    Drew: I've got a plan, but I'm going to need a dead monkey, some empty liquor bottles, and a vacuum cleaner.
  • Elementary:
    • Watson's apartment-sitter uses her place to film a low-budget porno. Aside from mentions of her couch needing to be taken into a back alley and shot, in one scene the man inexplicably grabs a spatula and "violates" it shortly after.
    • In a flashback in the episode "The One That Got Away", Sherlock asks Kitty to come by his place at noon the next day with a ladder and some goggles. In context it's obvious that these are for her detective training, but it's unclear exactly what skills he plans to teach her.
    • In the season 5 episode "Over a Barrel", Sherlock mentions helping NSA Agent McNally "untangle a rather ugly incident involving a Belgian, the Dalai Lama and a stolen wheel of priceless cheese".
  • Elvira's Midnight Madness: After watching the Movie She Demons, Elvira gets into this "argument" with Irish McCalla on how McCalla got the lead role over her:
    Elvira: What I'd like to know is, what did he get from you that he didn't get from me?
    McCalla: He got what he wanted.
    Elvira: Ooh, really?! With the Doberman and the Saran Wrap???
  • Forensic Files also pulls a subversion. At first, it would be hard to tell how a handful of plastic pellets, an obsolete dye, an unusual dental appliance, and an old notebook solved a 30 year old murder. In this case, the unusual dentistry indicated the victim was from Central America as the procedure wasn't performed in the US. The plastic pellets and dye color were from the factory the perpetrator owned and only used for a short window of time (indicating where and when the murder took place), and the old notebook had both the victim's resident alien number (which gave a positive ID) and a friend's phone number (who filled in the gaps in the story the police were missing).
  • Frasier:
    • Sam Malone whispers Niles some advice on how "to really put a smile on Maris's face." Niles responds by asking where he's supposed to find whipped cream and a car battery at this hour. In another episode, Bulldog suggests a party game,
      All right Doc, I'm going to need a blindfold, whipped cream and a glass coffee table. [everyone looks mystified] What? Nobody went to camp?
    • In the episode "Daphne Does Dinner", a visual version of this occurs, as the episode opens in medias res as infuriated guests storm out at the tail end of the Crane family's bizarre, unmitigated disaster of a dinner party. Something about Tourette's syndrome, live goats, flaming kababs, and Martin pretending to be a French count — and the kicker is that this could totally be part of a real episode of Frasier, so it doubles as an Offscreen Moment of Awesome.
  • Friends: In preparation for a night out with an old friend who always gets him into weird adventures, Ross packs his passport, an extra pair of socks, and a snakebite kit. To which Chandler rolls his eyes: "It's not going to be exactly like last time!" Although Chandler prepared himself with some Canadian money, since at least one adventure involved a boat headed for Nova Scotia...
  • In Game of Thrones, while "confessing" his "crimes", Tyrion Lannister starts confessing one incident, but is cut off before he can give more than the noodle implements.
    Tyrion: I once brought a jackass and a honeycomb into a brothel—
    Lady Lyssa: SILENCE!
    Robin: What happened next?
  • In Gotham, Bullock once went undercover at the Foxglove sex club, and was mildly disturbed by what he was seeing. Then on stage came out the main attraction, we hear the sounds of a woman, a man, a whip, a chainsaw, and a pig... And Bullock reacts:
    Bullock: (voice cracking) GCPD! Nobody move! (points at the stage) Especially you two!
  • Played with occasionally on The Great British Bake Off, where contestants are shown piling ingredients or wielding home-made construction aids before we know what they're going to bake with them. Used more directly in Season 4's Bread Week episode:
    Rob: There's a red card, a couple of flags of various types, I've got a knife that I need to cut the gills, tape measure because the tentacles all have to be the same length, there's a football and a siphon. (He was making a Showstopper loaf in the shape of Paul the Psychic Octopus.)
  • Called back several times in the second-season Christmas-themed episode of Happy Endings, "Grinches Be Crazy".
    Brad: [about giving their housekeeper her Christmas bonus] Seriously, babe, we gotta give her at least $300. I mean... she knows about the drawer.
    Jane: Okay, $200, but anything more than that, she's gonna feel uncomfortable.
    Brad: Well, I think discovering that drawer is what made her uncomfortable.
    […]
    [when Jane tries to get back the $2000 she gave the housekeeper instead of $200]
    Brad: Please tell me you got the money back for our trip.
    Jane: I couldn't do it. She had nieces— singing nieces.
    Nieces: [singing] Hark the Kerkovich-Williams angels sing, glory to the bonus they bring. Generous right to the core, forgiven for their sinful drawer.
    […]
    Brad: Alright, I'm gonna get the money back from Gita, and you're gonna go to the drawer and think of ways to make this up to me.
    Jane: [excited whisper] I have so many ideas.
    […]
    Gita: Oh, my Christmas angels! Mr. Max just leave for his Santa job. Uh, between you and me, I don't think he should be Santa. He has many drawers. Sinful drawers.
  • House:
    • The episode "House Divided":
      Wilson: Every time I go to one of your parties, I end up embarrassing myself in some new and unexpected way.
      House: That whole thing with the duck was hardly unexpected.
    • And "House Training" brings us the following gem (Cuddy and Wilson at a rather weird art exhibition):
      Cuddy: That is such a bad idea... There is no way that won't cause damage to the large intestine.
      Wilson: Are you keeping us here to torture me? (Leaning forward.) Is that a - bicycle pump?
    • An episode focusing on Wilson gives only brief glimpses into the patient of the week; House's completely unexplained first theory revolved around the fact that his patient was a tennis pro.
  • How I Met Your Mother:
    • Textbook example when Victoria tells her most embarrassing story which involves, "a game of truth or dare, a squeeze bottle of marshmallow ice cream topping, and the hot tub at my grandparents' retirement home." Ted then freezes the image telling his kids the story is too inappropriate to tell them, but it wasn't that great. Cut to Marshall saying, "That is the greatest story ever!"
    • Another case is where Robin tells the others about a Canadian sex act called the Old King Clancy, which includes a bottle of maple syrup.
    • The game Barney plays in Atlantic City might qualify. No one except Marshall can figure out how it's played, but it includes, Mah Jongg tiles, a wheel, bikini clad women, poker chips, cards, dice, and a jelly bean.
    • Marshgammon.
      Barney: Oh look, Ted landed in the chocolate swamps, that's ten points for me.
      Marshall: Finally!
  • Towards the end of the third episode of Hustle, Danny has this gem in the form of a proposal for his "great new idea" (presumably for a con):
    Danny: Right, clear your minds, picture this: We've got half of a cow, a small Shetland pony, and some embalming—
    Mickey: Tell me later.
  • iCarly: In "iWant My Website Back", Mandy's plan involves three zebras. She doesn't get to the rest of her list, because Sam immediately cuts her off.
  • Parodied for laughs in the first episode of The IT Crowd.
    Jen: What would you say if I told you I could raise your reputation upstairs 500%?
    Moss: Impossible! It can't be done!
    Jen: [dramatically] I'm going to need some felt tip markets... and some paper.
    [cue frustrated montage sequence ending in a poster for a party]
  • From Its A Living, we find the following description of a man one of the girls met in a bar. "He knows ten ways to kill a man with a drinking straw! Eleven if you let him keep the wrapper!"
  • Kenan & Kel: This happens at the end of each episode. Kenan devises a Zany Scheme to make up for what happened in the episode and tells Kel to get some stuff for him and meet him somewhere ("Get me a roll of toothpaste, a shower curtain, 10 bottles of apple juice, and a Gameboy! And meet me at my house around seven"). The most explicit example of this trope is an episode in which Kenan's Zany Scheme is described as: "Now, get something, something else, a third thing, and meet me over there. Now come on, Nickname."
  • In L.A. Law, nebbish (but rich and very kind) attorney Stewart Markowitz is consulting with an equally nebbish client who has left a number of gorgeous women very satisfied. He tells Stewart his secret—the Venus Butterfly maneuver. We don't get the details, but later, Stewart uses it very successfully on his true love, tall, gorgeous Ann Kelsey. When Ann shyly asks about another round, Stewart says, "We'll need to order up more champagne."
  • In an episode of Lois & Clark, Clark Kent, Lex Luthor, and several others are being held hostage by terrorists. Lex is bleeding to death from an earlier gunshot wound, so Clark begins shouting out ingredients for a medicine. While the others are distracted rounding up such ingredients as oranges and chewing gum, Clark is able to use his heat vision to cauterize Lex's wound without revealing his Secret Identity. Then when the "medicine" is applied, sure enough, the wound is healed.
  • This is how every episode of MacGyver (1985) works, hence the parodies. Though we do get to see how he puts it all together, he can make anything out of anything. So if you've got Noodle Implements, he can get it done. Duct tape usually helps, though. Word of God states that the reason for this was to prevent children watching the show from trying to duplicate the experiments themselves and possibly getting injured.
  • Malcolm in the Middle:
    • In one early episode, the boys were locked in their room until one of them confessed to some misdeed. When we see them next, they're wearing helmets with flashlights taped to them, have strapped pillows to themselves, and are trying to remove a light fixture from the ceiling. Malcolm comments "I swear, on paper this was a great idea." In the DVD commentary, the writers admit that they had no specific escape plan in mind and had just come up with something random.
    • In a later episode, Hal is having a mental breakdown over deciding on a stranger he was given power of attorney over pulling the plug or letting live in a coma. In the end he took a third option that only needed materials that you can get at Radio Shack, except for the hat. We're never told what he did, except that he got the idea when he found out the guy was a birdwatcher.
    • In another episode, Reese commits some horrific act that has everyone reeling. Even the school psychologist, who's heard everything, is beside herself. However, we never find out what it is.
      Psychologist: Oh God! What were the cats for?!
      Lois: Nobody knows!
  • Mama's Family: After getting an obscene phone call, Naomi tries to explain what the caller said, while leaving out the naughty bits. "My... your.. ice cubes... all night long."
  • Col. Flagg from M*A*S*H was infamous for this. In the midst of preparing for a manhunt, he gives Radar the following instructions:
    Col. Flagg: And, uh, round up a box of scorpions. About a dozen.
    Radar: You mean, uh, "scorpions" scorpions?
    Col. Flagg: Big ones.
    Hawkeye: What the hell are you gonna do with a box of scorpions?
    Col. Flagg: It's personal. Gift for a friend.

    Col. Flagg: If you can't find scorpions... get two snakes and a rat.
  • Men Behaving Badly, Gary is trying to get out of his impending marriage by imposing ridiculous provisos on Dorothy: "And you have to consent to any sexual act, even if it involves..." (casts about wildly) "...enormous vegetables!"
  • Mock the Week has a game called "If This Is The Answer, What Is The Question?" (rather like Jeopardy!). Sometimes the words given seem to make up a set of noodle implements, and the panelists have great fun with this trope by suggesting what the items might be used for, with varying degrees of detail and/or Squick.
  • Monty Python's Flying Circus:
    • In the "Storytime" sketch, a children's TV presenter is reading a series of stories which invariably turn pornographic. "Discipline? Naked? (turns the book sideways) ...With a melon?"
    • This one is a classic:
      Presenter: ...to stop us from revealing your name, the name of the three other people involved, the youth organization to which they belong, and the shop where you bought the equipment.
    • One audio version of Blackmail has Michael Palin narrating the blackmailed videotape (because there is no video to go along with it).
      Narrator: Wait, what's she doing to his - is that a chicken up there - no, no, that's just the way she's holding the grapefruit. Oh, ho, ho! [buzzer sounds]
    • There's Gavin Millar(rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr)'s speech about Neville Shunt's railway drama, which is essentially one Noodle Implement after another in rapid succession.
      Gavin Millar(rrrrrrrrrrrrrrr): Some people have made the mistake of seeing Shunt's work as a load of rubbish about railway timetables, but clever people like me, who talk loudly in restaurants, see this as a deliberate ambiguity, a plea for understanding in a mechanized world. The points are frozen, the beast is dead. What is the difference? What indeed is the point? The point is frozen, the beast is late out of Paddington. The point is taken. If La Fontaine's elk would spurn Tom Jones the engine must be our head, the dining car our esophagus, the guard's van our left lung, the cattle truck our shins, the first-class compartment the piece of skin at the nape of the neck and the level crossing an electric elk called Simon. The clarity is devastating. But where is the ambiguity? It's over there in a box. Shunt is saying the 8:15 from Gillingham when in reality he means the 8:13 from Gillingham. The train is the same only the time is altered. Ecce homo, ergo elk. La Fontaine knew his sister and knew her bloody well. The point is taken, the beast is moulting, the fluff gets up your nose. The illusion is complete; it is reality, the reality is illusion and the ambiguity is the only truth. But is the truth, as Hitchcock observes, in the box? No there isn't room, the ambiguity has put on weight. The point is taken, the elk is dead, the beast stops at Swindon, Chabrol stops at nothing, I'm having treatment and La Fontaine can get knotted.
    • John Cleese introduces one audio segment with '...and several butcher's aprons.'
    • "...with a large piece of wet paper. Turn the paper over - turn the paper over keeping your eye on the camel, and paste down the edge of the sailor's uniform, until the word 'Maudling' is almost totally obscured. Well, that's one way of doing it."
    • In the "Expedition to Lake Pahoe" sketch, the BBC interviewer starts talking like a pirate, until he's shot with a tranquilizer dart. He's then replaced by another interviewer, who apologizes for his collegue's behavior:
      Interviewer: Hello. I'm sorry about my colleague's rather unconventional behaviour just now, but things haven't been too easy for him recently, trouble at home, rather confidential so I can't give you all the details... interesting though they are... three bottles of rum with his Weetabix, and so on, anyway... apparently the girl wasn't even... anyway the activity you see behind me... it's the mother I feel sorry for. I'll start again. The activity you see behind me is part of the preparations for the new Naval Expedition to Lake Pahoe.
  • In an episode of The Muppet Show, Gonzo the Great volunteers to perform his new act in front of a hostile audience. All he needs is a typewriter. When Kermit the Frog tells him they don't have a typewriter, Gonzo says, "Then I'll use a cow!" Unfortunately Gonzo is pelted with rotten vegetables and booed off the stage before the details of the act are revealed. Other implements shown on stage before the curtain fell included a trampoline and a flaming hoop.
  • MythBusters:
    • Subversion: Most of the lists of things they need to carry out their plans only SOUND like this—but then again, why WOULD you need a piano tuner on a bomb range? Or a microwave, for that matter? The cement truck... And then there's the pig viscera and the diving suit...The duct tape, the lard, the air tank, the Pykrete, the tongue stud, the Tesla coil and the playing cards..You know, MythBusters needs a folder all its own on here. We see on-screen how the stuff eventually gets used but how could a newbie to the show figure out how anybody can do science with a jar of salsa, rubber cement and eight raincoats. Or a duck, some bulls, old glassware, liquid nitrogen, 400 cigarette lighters, a cell phone, silicone breast implants, some tubes of biscuit dough, an octopus, buttered toast, a semi-automatic and an airline toilet. Also, Jamie's wall in the back of M5 has many, many totes with names of these taped on them, including one allegedly containing "Raw Meat".
    • Played straight in the following exchange:
      Jamie: Are you thinking what I'm thinking?
      Adam: I think so, Jamie, but it's gonna be hard to find four oak doors and 30 feet of greased chain!
    • In Katie Tiedrich's animated parody, Adam lists of a number of decidedly-not-duct-tape supplies he's going to need, which includes seventeen gallons of pudding. Tory gets to feed the leopard.
    • Lampshaded once, when Kari is asked by Tory and Grant to name what a set of items have in common: creamer, cheese, leather, chicken, duct tape, and a steel pipe. Her first two (incorrect) answers are "Saturday night at Adam Savage's house" and "Saturday night at Jamie Hyneman's house". Correct Answer 
  • In an episode of NCIS, the team needs to question a pair of teens, but Gibbs refuses to use actual interrogation techniques. Tony picks up the phone and tells the "person" on the other end that he needs to requisition a pair of "genital cuffs", pausing briefly to ask the teens if they have any family history of testicular cancer. When he leaves, the teens spend some time trying to figure out if genital cuffs really exist, and what their specific uses could be—and their fear leads them to reveal the information the team is looking for, right in the range of Tony's off-the-hook phone.
  • Night Court. Judge Harry has left his job and begun collecting bizarre objects to organize the "ultimate prank." (He never plays it.) Averted in that, at the end, we see what he's built and can conclude what the prank must have been intended to be (He was apparently planning to hang glide to the Statue of Liberty and fit it with an enormous pair of Groucho glasses).
  • In Pair of Kings, Brady and Boomer are trying to prevent the dark side from reaching Zadoc (a stone statue) which will allow him to back to life. Leading to this exchange:
    Brady: Since the dark side has moved 2 feet, we're gonna buy this island some time and move Zadoc back 4 feet.
    Boomer: Impossible! We'll need like 20 yards, a thick rope, an intricate pully system, and at least several strong men.
    Brady: I got 2 skateboards and a stick of butter.
    Boomer: That'll work too.
  • In the opening of one episode of Pardon the Interruption, Wilbon asks Kornheiser if he's ever had a big night in Wisconsin. Kornheiser replies that, yes, he has. It involved six badgers, a cheese wheel, and Jermichael Finley.
  • In Psych, Shawn Spencer's plan to deal with hostile reptilian aliens requires a Speak-N-Spell and seven pounds of mashed potatoes. The items are actually references to two famous Steven Spielberg movies about aliens - E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and Close Encounters of the Third Kind.
  • Red Dwarf:
    • They tended to allude to sex like this, although at times, they've used it for torture: "Rasputin! Bring in the bucket of soapy frogs and remove his trousers!" from "Meltdown".
    • In the sixth series, a Running Gag involved Rimmer constantly try to cite Space Corps Directives that were pertinent to their current situation, only to completely mangle them have have Kryten inform them what they really were, usually in this fashion ("'Eight-eight-oh-nine-seven-stroke-c'? Doesn't that require a live chicken and a rabbi?")
    • When Lister learns that he's God of the Cat People in "Waiting for God":
      Lister: I'm supposed to have given them five sacred laws. Five sacred laws! I've broken four of them meself. I'd have broken the fifth, but there's no sheep on board.
    • In "Legion", Kryten drops references to some literal Noodle Implements, as the crew attempt to use Mamosian anti-matter chopsticks:
      Kryten: For my cooking duties, I'm programmed to be proficient in all known off-world eating techniques, including Jovian Boogle Hoops, and the often-lethal Mercurian Boomerang Spoon.
    • Several instances of ice cubes and any pocket cavity...
    • Driven insane by the Holovirus in "Quarantine", Rimmer takes a whispered suggestion from his penguin pal Mr. Flibble on how to punish the others - "Oh, we couldn't do that. Who'd clean up all the mess?".
  • Royal Canadian Air Farce:
    Barack Obama: Larry, I admit my greatest moral failure in high school was using marijuana, cocaine and alcohol. But there's no truth to the rumor I went to the sophomore toga party with a duck and a can of Crisco.
  • In an episode of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Hilda and Zelda are preparing a surprise party for Salem and decide to cast a spell to see his "ideal party". The spell transports them to Ancient Rome right in front of Caligula...
    Caligula: [to a servant] Get these women some fig leaves. [grinning sleazily at Hilda and Zelda] I'm going to show them the secret handshake.
    Zelda: I've seen enough! [hastily teleports them back]
  • In the first episode of Salute Your Shorts, a kid is threatened with an "awful waffle". It apparently involves maple syrup and a tennis racket. This is actually a real camp hazing ritual where you pour syrup on someone's stomach, then smack them repeated with the tennis racket so a sticky grid of marks is made. However, we never see it actually performed, and later episodes add more and more unrelated items to the mix.
  • In a story presented on Weekend Update of the 30 January 2010 episode of Saturday Night Live, a Roman Catholic priest in Illinois was arrested for attempting to shoplift some butter and a sofa cover from a Wal-Mart. The joke was, "It's unfortunate that they didn't follow him home so they could at least find out what part 2 of that plan was."
  • Scrubs:
    • Although J.D.'s fantasies usually don't fit this trope, as we see exactly how his wacky schemes play out in his head, we do get a straight example in the episode "Their Story", in which rather than hearing J.D.'s thoughts, we can hear the thoughts of Jordan, Ted and The Todd:
      The Todd (thinking): Oh great, there he goes off into his fantasy world. Now I'm stuck here waiting until he snaps out of it with some weird comment.
      J.D. (coming out of one of his fantasies): But we'd have to find a whole lot of gnomes!
      The Todd (unimpressed): That's helpful.
    • Janitor once volunteers to help with some endeavor in exchange for being put into full body cast and taken to the airport. He'll explain later.
    • When Janitor calls to his brain trust to help him devise a plan to win over Elliot's heart, one of the plans involves setting her apartment on fire and another one requires a tug boat.
      Janitor: Tug-boats and arson, that's all I ever get from you guys!
  • A Seinfeld episode had Jerry upset because Puddy had started using his "move", which, being a sexual move, wasn't elaborated on, except for the substitution of a pinch for a (clockwise) swirl.
  • Sherlock: "The Hounds of Baskerville" starts with Sherlock bursting into 221B Baker Street soaked in blood and wielding a harpoon:
    Sherlock: Well, that was tedious.
    John: You went on the Tube like that?
    Sherlock: None of the cabs would take me.
  • In an episode of Skins:
    Chris: Everything you could ever want from an evening. Songs, choir girls, colourful costumes, fellatio, rabbits...
    Maxxie: Rabbits?
    Chris: Don't ask man.
  • In one episode of Stargate Atlantis, Sheppard finds himself stuck with Lucius Lavin, trying to come up with a plan to rescue his teammates. Lavin throws out some truly ridiculous ideas which end with him suggesting they get "a magnifying glass and some tape. .....Some poisoned tape."
  • Subverted in this episode of Stark Raving Mad, in which Ian asks Henry to get three straws and two maraschino cherries, only to reveal upon the latter's return that he just wanted him out of the way. Then he asks for a four-slot toaster and a Belgian waffle maker. Fortunately, he figures it out before leaving.
  • In The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, Carey (trying to be the "fun parent") has Cody in her care, so as the boy hides, she wonders where he went. Mr. Moesby tells her in a different direction. She tells him that when he sees him "tell him to meet me at the park and have him bring his mitt, knee pads, and a snorkel." Cody does not want to know how those go together.
  • On Suits, Harvey and Donna have a pre-trial ritual that involves a can opener and an exorbitant number of thumbtacks. Apparently three dozen is a record.
  • Titus: "Look in your medicine cabinet. If it can fit in your ear, my mom can kill you with it. Except a wet-nap, you know, with a wet-nap she can only maim you."
  • One of the more memorable editions of To Catch a Predator involved a man who requested his prey to have a cat and cool whip when he came. We never do find out what he was going to do with this.
  • From the Bolivia Special episode for Top Gear (subverted, in that they used nearly everything):
    Richard: [voiceover] Finally, we were all off the ramp, and as a reward, the producers gave us a box of things to help us survive the perils that lay ahead.
    Jeremy: [going through box] ...Some rubber tubing... Durex...
    Richard: Condoms?!
    Jeremy: Vaseline... Tampax... and er... Viagra.
    James: I know we're going to be in the jungle a bit together but, that's a bit extreme.
    Richard: What kind of party are they planning?
  • In Torchwood:
    Ianto: If... you're interested, I've still got that stopwatch.
    Jack: [confused] ...so?
    Ianto: Well. Think about it. Lots of things you can do with a stopwatch.
    Jack: [grinning with understanding] Oh, yeah. I can think of a few.
    Ianto: There's quite a list.
    Jack: I'll send the others home early. See you in my office in ten.
    Ianto: [pulls out the stopwatch] That's ten minutes and counting.
    • Jack and Ianto seem to do this a lot. In Day Three, Gwen mentions that she took home the video contact lenses for "a bit of fun" with Rhys. Apparently Jack and Ianto have had the same idea.
      Ianto: Yeah, well, been there, done that. It is fun.
  • In Warehouse 13 Claudia is bothered that her bosses have a list of ways to kill her if she turns evil. She ends up giving Artie her preferred method of death and all we hear is that it involves David Bowie.
    • In the episode Merge With Caution Artie handcuffs Claudia to an oven door handle and the following dialogue occurs when he turns to leave.
      Claudia: You know, the keys are over there.
      Artie: From here I can count eight ways that you can escape.
      Claudia: Okay, look, I'm really sorry...
      Artie: Oh, a spatula, make that nine.
      [Artie leaves and Claudia futilely tries hitting the handcuffs with the spatula while saying "open"]
  • In episode 2.02 of White Collar, "Need to Know", in which FBI Special Agent Peter Burke and Mozzie, a criminal, have three hours to retrieve $10,000 hidden by their mutual friend Neal Caffrey:
    Mozz: But first, some ground rules. I want full immunity about anything you may see or hear tonight.
    Peter: Let's just say I'll owe you one.
    Mozzie: I accept your counter-offer. I need your shoelace.
    Peter: My shoelaces are going to get us the ten thousand dollars.
    Mozzie: Rule number two: no further questions.
    Peter: [as he unlaces one shoe and gives Mozz the shoelace] I'm doing this more out of a morbid curiosity than anything else.
    Mozzie: I'll also need a magnet and a Sports Illustrated.
    Peter: This is a scavenger hunt now?
    Mozzie: I refer you to rule number two.
    Peter: Magnet...No Sports Illustrated, I've got the New York Journal magazine supplement.
    Mozzie: "That'll do, pig. That'll do." Oh, I also need a twenty-dollar bill. [Peter gives him a twenty] Great, thanks. [Mozzie uses the magnet and shoelace to retrieve a hidden key] Just a key, yes. Another piece of the puzzle. And don't forget, a hammer, a crowbar, and a radio.
    Peter: Scavenger hunt!
    Mozzie: "Life is more manageable when thought of as a scavenger hunt as opposed to a surprise party."
    Peter: Jimmy Buffett.
    Mozzie: Right.
    • Partially subverted in that Mozzie eventually uses most of the items on camera; however, while we hear him wield the hammer and crowbar we can't see what he smashes, so we don't know exactly why he's in such a hurry to leave afterward.
      "There are many things of which a wise man might wish to be ignorant."
  • Whose Line Is It Anyway?:
    • Played with in the Party Quirks game. Collin Mochrie plays an overly dramatic private investigator finding ridiculous clues to a murder.
      Colin: What we have here is a pickle.. A piece of thread... And a Don Ho album.
      Chip: You're MacGyver!
    • Another game, Scenes From A Hat, had the topic "Unusual things for a neighbour to ask to borrow".
      Colin: Hi, I need some monkey testicles and a cola.
  • Wings: Roy finds the subject of one's parents having sex distasteful:
    Roy: Look, my mother was a saint. My father was a pillar of the community. The last thing I want to do is imagine Mom wrapped in cellophane and Dad wearing tights and a miner's helmet. I didn't wake up and ask for a drink of water again for 25 years.
  • Wizards of Waverly Place:
    • Justin asks Alex's advice of how to get rid of a clingy girlfriend. She tells him he's going to need a road flare, a barrel of maple syrup and a mini trampoline. He realizes after some time what she meant by that.
    • To fix the lamp he broke, Max will need "A broom, a dustpan, double-stick tape, and small dog." The first three are all a Subverted Trope, as it's obvious enough what they'd be used for, but it's never explained what he intended to do with the last one.
  • In The Young Ones episode "Bomb" three things Vyvyan needs to use to dispatch the bomb are "the drill, the hedge trimmers, and some ordinary household bleach."


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