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Basic Trope: The ship is sinking, and the crew and passengers better get off now.

  • Straight:
    • The Sailin' Squid collides with a rock. As water breaches the hull, the captain yells, "Abandon ship!" Everyone climbs into lifeboats. As they drift away from the wreck, they watch the Sailin' Squid slowly sink beneath the waves.
    • After the plane takes enemy fire, the pilot loses control. Pilot and crew jump out of the flaming wreck and open their parachutes. While they safely descend to earth, the plane crashes and explodes in a field.
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    • The starship Washington breaks apart after meeting a Negative Space Wedgie. All crew must evacuate to life pods and wait until help arrives.
  • Exaggerated: An entire armada has an Achilles' Heel. Suddenly, the whole fleet leaks and a hundred ships must evacuate at the same time.
  • Downplayed:
    • The bottom of the sea turns out to be just three feet below the Sailin' Squid's keel, so the ship is salvageable but the crew and passengers need to find some other ship to get where they're going.
    • The Starship Washington is capable of separating into two or more sections, so if part of the ship is critically damaged, the crew can gather in a functional section and jettison the rest.
  • Justified:
    • The Sailin' Squid hit the rock at night, and the crew never saw it coming.
    • The Sailin' Squid is at war and can't survive this many direct hits from cannonballs.
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  • Inverted: Men on lifeboats witness a mysterious ship rising from beneath the waves, and climb onto the new vessel.
  • Subverted: Someone yells, "Abandon ship!", but the Sailin' Squid dodges the rock and survives intact, and the crew stay aboard.
  • Double Subverted: The Sailin' Squid dodges the rock but hits an underwater reef. The crew, having saved ship, must now abandon ship.
  • Parodied: The Sailin' Squid bumps into a tiny ice cube. The crew panic and abandon ship, leaving behind a drifting but perfectly intact vessel.
  • Zig Zagged: The Sailin' Squid collides with a rock, but not hard enough to damage it. The Captain doesn't yell anything, but everybody starts abandoning the ship by climbing into the lifeboats and drifting away. Later, after everybody returns, the ship collides hard with another rock, causing it to sink. The Captain yells "Abandon ship!", but everybody ignores him.
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  • Averted: The ship never sinks, but safely reaches its destination.
  • Enforced: The story is about an event where a ship really sank, like Titanic (1997).
  • Lampshaded: "Why can't anyone sail around an iceberg and not slam into one?"
  • Invoked: The captain detonates some explosives and blows a hole in her own ship. She evacuates her crew, but the precious cargo goes down, so there is No MacGuffin, No Winner.
  • Exploited: As the ship goes down, the prisoner steals a lifeboat and escapes to freedom.
  • Defied:
  • Discussed: When the Sailin' Squid collides with something, the crew talk about whether to abandon the ship, or reassure the passengers.
  • Conversed: A sailor on the Cruisin' Crab tells a story about how the Sailin' Squid went down and everyone there abandoned ship.
  • Implied: The audience watches as the Trope University students leave on Sailin' Squid. They come back on a Coast Guard vessel, implying that they abandoned the Sailin' Squid, but leaving the disaster as a Noodle Incident.
  • Deconstructed: The crew abandons the sinking Sailin' Squid and then everybody slowly dies in lifeboats.
  • Reconstructed: Some crew members survive. If they had not abandon the ship, everybody would die.
  • Played For Laughs: The Ragtag Bunch of Misfits lose a ship Once per Episode, but no one is ever hurt. The captain complains, "It costs money to abandon ship every week!"
  • Played For Drama: The cruise ship Emerald takes hours to sink. Some of the passengers get trapped below deck and die. There are not enough lifeboats. A surviving sailor remarks that she is out of a job. The captain is Going Down with the Ship. The death toll reaches 500. The disaster becomes a major news story. The government investigates. An angry survivor murders an officer of the cruise company. Said company goes bankrupt.


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