Sarcastic Confessions on live-action TV.
- In a 3rd Rock from the Sun episode where Sally, Tommy, and Harry broke into Mary's house and decided to stay even after Officer Don showed up:Suzie Martin: Hi, you must be Mary Albright.
Sally: Uh... yeah. Otherwise I'd be this strange person that broke in and was hanging around even though the police told me to leave.
- In Alias Smith and Jones, Heyes and Curry find themselves accidentally impersonating two of the agents who are supposed to catch them. Another agent realizes they're not who they say they are and asks their real names. Heyes promptly says, "Hannibal Heyes and Kid Curry", and the agent assumes they just don't want to tell him who they really are.
- 'Allo 'Allo! After hiding two British airmen from a Gestapo search, Fanny declares that she'll never reveal their presence, only to immediately say "There are two British airmen under the bed!" the moment Herr Flick enters. Flick walks off in a huff, thinking he's being made a fool of.
- In American Gods, under interrogation by a detective, Mr. Wednesday casually explains the entire god war situation (including bits that had only been hinted to the audience before then, thus allowing the scene to double as an Info Dump). The detective, of course, assumes he's dealing with a smartass.
- Used by Cordelia right to Angel's face. She admits to causing the entire first half of the season sarcastically.
- Inverted by Angelus, who uses a sarcastic denial of guilt to torment his friends. He's discovered drinking a dead person's blood, and declares that it isn't what looks like. It isn't—he just found the corpse after it was killed by the same mole as in the above example, and was feeling peckish.
- Wesley's father asks why he doesn't have a girlfriend; Wesley responds truthfully that he hacked up his last girlfriend with an ax. Dad tells him off for being sarcastic, though Wesley wasn't actually trying to hide the truth, even sarcastically.
- Arrested Development: While visiting a film studio with Tobias, Maeby ducks into an empty office to use the phone. She's found by an employee:Jeff: Sorry, is this your office?
Maeby: No, I'm just sitting behind someone else's desk, pretending these are my kids.
- Minor example in the final episode of the main story arc of Babylon 5. 500 years in the future, Earth has been bombed back to the Dark Ages by a high-tech war. An old monk is asked by a younger one why the Rangersnote don't return to help humanity. The elder suggests that perhaps humanity is not ready for them, but even now they have agents among them, slowly returning technology and helping where they can. The younger laughs and leaves... then the elder turns to the camera and begins his report back to the Rangers.
- Battlestar Galactica:
- Tyrol is afraid at one point that he might be a Cylon sleeper agent; the priest, Cavil, assures him that he is not. When Tyrol asks him how he knows, Cavil sarcastically replies, "Because I'm a Cylon, and I've never seen you at any of our meetings." Of course, no one takes it seriously at the time... but then he's revealed to be a Cylon in the very next episode. Savvy viewers start suspecting it from that line alone, since Chip Six made the same joke earlier.
- Taken further with the alternate viewpoint movie "The Plan," where it's revealed there have been actual Cylon meetings on Galactica.
- Played With when Boomer (who hadn't yet discovered she was a Cylon) sarcastically says that she is one.
- In Season Two of the US Big Brother, "Evil Doctor Will" Kirby started out the game by literally telling everyone that he was untrustworthy, and that his strategy would be to lie, cheat, and steal from everyone else in the house, and backstab any so-called allies he might have as soon as there was profit to be had in betraying them. Everyone thought he was hilarious. Of course, this is exactly how he played the game and walked away with the prize.
- A variant (Sarcastic Denial) occurs in the Blackadder The Third episode "Nob and Nobility". Having killed The Scarlet Pimpernel, Blackadder tells Prince George that the real Pimpernel would never admit his identity, so the Prince's enormous postal order belongs to someone who has been to France and rescued an aristocrat but, when asked "Are you the Scarlet Pimpernel?", replies "Absolutely not, sir." George quickly realizes that Blackadder has (supposedly) been to France and rescued an aristocrat, and asks if he is the Scarlet Pimpernel. Blackadder replies, completely truthfully, "Absolutely not."
- In the Christmas special, the Elizabethan Blackadder performs a double bluff wherein he confesses truthfully to Lord Melchett (Stephen Fry) that the queen is thinking of beheading anyone who tries to give her a present, knowing that he'll think it to be a lie and decide to give her one. (This leads to the hilarious line, "Baldrick, you wouldn't see a subtle plan if it painted itself purple and danced naked on top of a harpsichord singing "Subtle plans are here again!") The plan backfires when the queen changes her mind and ends up demanding a present from Blackadder, who of course doesn't have one, but he gets it to backfire *again* in his favor when he tricks Melchett and the queen into signing a death warrant for Melchett and persuades her to let him inherit all of the things she promised Fry's character in exchange for his gift.
- Jenna sees through one of these on Blake's 7:Jenna: You wouldn't be trying to get rid of me, would you?
Avon: I have to get rid of Blake first. You're next on my list.
Jenna: That would have been very disarming, if I didn't know that you meant it.
- In "Space Fall", Vila provides a distraction by walking up to two guards and explaining that he's an escaped prisoner turned saboteur who is looking for a suitable place to plant his explosives.
- Boardwalk Empire: After Warren Knox becomes the head of the Prohibition enforcement in Atlantic City and meets Nucky Thompson, he tells him: "I do intend to take my duties with the utmost seriousness and to enforce the existing laws to the best of my abilities." Everybody is shocked before Knox adds that he was just joking. Actually, he does mean it since he's an undercover BoI agent.
- Breaking Bad:
- In the third-season premiere, brother-in-law and DEA agent Hank is helping Walter move out of his home after a falling-out with his wife. One black duffel bag is heavy, and Walter isn't supposed to do any heavy lifting. Hank insists, and feels the heft. "What have you got in there, cinder blocks?" Without a drop of irony, Walter replies, "Half-million in cash." Hank only chuckles and says, "That's the spirit," not realizing that Walter actually does have half a million dollars in cash that he obtained by selling crystal meth.
- In a later episode, Hank is going through Gale's lab notebook and begins wondering who this "W.W." person is whom he praises in the handwritten dedication, and jokes that it might stand for "Walter White". A nervous Walt then puts his hands up and sarcastically says, "All right, you got me." Although Walt is fully aware that this dedication actually doesn't refer to him, and quickly proves as such by flipping through the book until he finds an excerpt of a poem by Gale's favorite poet, Walt Whitman. However, in a much later episode, Hank is using Walt's bathroom and grabs some nearby reading material. It's a book of Walt Whitman poems, and inside is a handwritten dedication "to my other favorite W.W." from "G.B.". Upon reading it, Hank has a flashback to the previously mentioned scene.
- Lydia takes precautions to keep Walter from killing her, prompting Walter to impatiently say that, yes, he will actually kill her in broad daylight, in a public place, with witnesses everywhere which he was in fact totally planning to do by poisoning her tea.
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Used sometimes by Buffy on her mother before Joyce learned the truth about what was going on:Joyce: Honestly, don't you ever think about anything besides boys and clothes?
Buffy: Saving the world from vampires?
Joyce: I swear, sometimes I don't know what goes on in your head.
- Burn Notice:
- Happens occasionally when one of the cast is undercover. For example, in an episode where Michael was hired as a security consultant by an art dealer to find someone spying on him, he finds out that the culprit was a woman whose father the dealer had killed. He spends the rest of the episode messing with the art dealer's security, including wiping out a hard drive containing security footage with an electromagnet. When explaining how the drive could've been erased, he puts quite a bit of emphasis on the possibility of someone using an electromagnet.
- And that's not even mentioning all the lines like "Your spy could be standing right in front of you and you wouldn't even know it!" As Television Without Pity put it when Michael eventually revealed his real identity and the bad guy was shocked: "Dude, he tried to tell you. Like, nine times."
- In "Hard Out", Michael is trapped on an island with a bunch of nasty mercenaries, so he pretends to be a superior in their chain of command. When he's asked why they should believe his story, he pulls this on them: "Oh, you think we're lying, smart guy? You think we're intruders who just landed on this island with heavily-armed troops; we walked right up to you, just to tell you you have a broken comlink?" Yes, in fact. (He merely left out the part where the comlink is broken because he just destroyed it.) Later that same episode, he pulls the same line as in the previous example: "For all we know, a team of highly-trained operatives could be after those files, right now!" (Indeed there is, and they're talking to one of them.)
- Dexter often uses such to put people at ease. Regarding a therapist he's investigating:Fellow patient: How do you like him?
Dexter: He's all right. But I'm a sociopath, so there's not much he can do for me.
- And in a flashback to his first date with Rita, she says his sister has been telling her all about him, and he jokes, "You mean she admitted the fact that I'm an ax murderer?"note
- Dexter often uses such to put people at ease. Regarding a therapist he's investigating:
- In episode 7 of Dickensian, when Miss Havisham's cousin Matthew Pocket says he now trusts Compeyson's intentions, Compeyson replies "Then you are a fool, Pocket. Of course I intend to seduce Miss Havisham and steal her entire fortune. Every last penny of it." After a moment of uncertainty, they both start laughing, and Pocket says "You had me there, Compeyson!"
- Doctor Who, "Underworld". The Doctor goes back to the planet to get rid of the fake race banks, which are actually bombs. He travels all the way back to where he can get captured again (rather than just leaving them on the surface) so it's obvious that he planned to have them taken from him, and, when forced to give them up, he explains that they are really bombs. "You can do better than that," replies a villain and confiscates them. The bombs blow up the planet.
- Dollhouse: Paul Ballard, who's been in the role of Agent Mulder all season with regards to the Dollhouse, invokes it deliberately when he tells the perfect truth to FBI agents summoned by a fake report of a terrorist threat: there is no threat, but they're standing in front of the Dollhouse and he can show them everything. As he expected, they leave in disgust (of course, he had nothing to lose if they believed him either).
- In the Due South episode "Hawk and a Handsaw", Fraser manages to get himself committed to a psych ward (intentionally — he's going undercover) simply by showing up in full dress uniform and telling the precise truth about his past.Psychologist: So, you're a Mountie, are you?
Fraser: Constable. Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Yes.
Psychologist: Here in Chicago.
Fraser: Well, you see, I used to live in the Yukon, but I uncovered a plot that involved drowning caribou and then some men who were dressed in white came after me with homicidal intentions. It's a rather long story and it takes exactly two hours to tell, but the upshot of it is I was sent here. I think I embarrassed some people in the government.
Psychologist: Do you have anyone who can vouch for you here?
Fraser: Well, yes, there's my wolf. Although I'm not sure he would vouch for me. If you know anything about lupine behavior, you know how moody they are, and, on top of that, he's deaf.
Fraser: I'd rather not say.
- The Equalizer. The psychiatric version happens in "The Last Campaign". McCall has to get inside a mental hospital where his client is being held incommunicado, so he tells the doctor that he used to work for an international organization of spies, and he wears black so he can fade into the dark during night operations. Later he needs to talk to another patient, so he truthfully explains to the doctor that she's also an ex-spy who's one of his agents.
- On one episode of Fawlty Towers wherein Basil is putting on a painted smile and a false air of jollity in front of one of the old ladies who have permanent residence at the hotel because he's trying to pretend like nothing's wrong when a guest had (unknown to most everyone) died in his sleep, she says, "You're very cheerful this morning, Mr. Fawlty!" to which he replies with just enough faux merriment so she'll think he's kidding, "Yes, well one of the guests has just died!!"
- Game of Thrones: Arya does this in "Dragonstone". She runs into a group of Lannister soldiers on the way down to King's Landing, and they ask her what she plans to do there. She proudly announces "I'm going to kill the queen," to which the soldiers assume she is joking and laugh. Any audience member familiar with Arya's list, however, will know that this is no joke.
- In Gossip Girl, after Blair loses her virginity to Chuck, her on-again-off-again boyfriend Nate has the following conversation with Chuck, who is also Nate's best friend:Nate: Could you find who she's seeing?
Nate: Yes. Come on, man, who better?
Chuck: Who better, indeed.
- Grimm: Nick is arrested by the FBI in connection with a murder and told that the DNA found at the crime scene isn't his, but is a close enough match to be a relative. When asked who he's covering for, he replies, "My mother." Since, according to public record, Nick's mother is dead, the agents write it off as sarcasm.
- Hannibal loves sneaking jokes about his, er, eccentricities into casual conversation. By season two, he's reached a new low in subtlety:Chilton: He tells everyone that you are a monster.
Hannibal: [smiling pleasantly] Well, in that case, you're dining with a psychopathic murderer, Frederick. [they toast]
- In the pilot episode of Heroes, Claire, after rescuing someone from a burning building by simply walking into the building and shrugging off the heat of the flames, is asked by her mother what she did that day. Her answer, "I walked through fire without being burned," is dismissed as angsty teenage poetry.
- Hogan's Heroes:
- Played with in the original pilot The crew's certain a new inmate is a spy and are trying to figure out what to do about him. Hogan decides to actually SHOW HIM their underground hideout. They blindfold him, walk him around the camp to the trap door and use a fake You Just Told Me to convince him they're under the water tower. Hilarity Ensues when the agent runs to his superiors, rambling about a counterfeit money press, a tailor forging Nazi uniforms, and a small factory that makes gun-shaped cigarette lighters—his "lighter" was swapped for an actual gun, and his attempts to trigger the trapdoor lead to him being doused in gallons of water. The other Germans think he's nuts.
- Happens again in a later episode, when Klink wonders why an allied agent suddenly disappeared from camp and asks if Hogan has anything to do with it. He responds with a sarcastic, "Next you're gonna say we smuggled him into camp and flew him out in a balloon!" That's exactly what they did.
- In an episode of The Hour, Freddie confronts Kish and asks him if he killed Peter Darrall. Kish replies "Yes," then quickly adds "Every time we played at cards."
- Subverted in one episode. House was taken away by the CIA, and when he called Dr. Wilson, Wilson (at least initially) didn't believe him. Dr. Cuddy (their boss) asks Wilson where House is, and she doesn't believe Wilson, either. At the end of the episode, Cuddy asks House where he's been, and tells him he better not say it was the CIA or she'll give House and Wilson extra clinic hours. House then had to come up with an alternative explanation Cuddy will actually believe. Unfortunately, Cuddy wouldn't believe that House would be willing to be hired for a day by a rich guy with a sick child, stating that it's actually more plausible that House was with the CIA (and they get the extra clinic hours).
- Used straight in the episode "Top Secret", where Foreman almost catches Chase and Cameron having sex at the workplace while they should be watching over a patient. When he later inquires what they were doing, Chase comes with a quick and shady excuse that just seems to make the exposing of their naughty deed inevitable. At this point Cameron tells the truth, which Foreman just grimaces over and drops the subject.Foreman: [laughs] House would do Wilson before you'd do Chase.
- Used again in the season finale of season 4, when Wilson asks House what he didn't say aloud about Amber while he was under hypnosis. House responds honestly, "I wanted to see her naked," but Wilson doesn't believe him originally.
- While not actually spoken, the detective guy gives Cuddy a picture of House as a college cheerleader to earn her trust. She admits she knew the picture was falsified. Turns out the picture was fake but House really was a cheerleader.
- Yet again, season 5 episode 7, when his employees ask House why Cuddy went to talk to him, he just blurts it out. No one believes him except Wilson, later on.House: I kinda hit that last night, and now she's all up on my jock.
Wilson: Wow! Wha... what?
House: Huh. Everyone else thought I was kidding.
- Some House/Wilson shippers like to think House does this in the episode "The Mistake".Stacy: What are you hiding?
House: I'm gay. [Stacy looks unimpressed] Oh, that's not what you meant! It does explain a lot, though. No girlfriend... always with Wilson... obsession with sneakers...
- Another example from "The Jerk":
- A first-season episode had House's general sarcasm mistaken for this because it sounded too much like the kind of thing he would do.House: I'm subjecting a twelve-year-old to a battery of dangerous and invasive tests to avoid being bored. (beat) Okay, maybe I would do that, but I'm not.
- How I Met Your Mother:
- Barney and Ted pretend to get in a fight. In an attempt to make it look convincing, Barney discovers that he has an impressive right hook.Marshall: You two got in a fight. Really.
Ted: Uh, no, Barney punched me and himself in the face to make it look like we got in a fight. Come on, Marshall.
- Robin makes a remark in a "sarcastic" tone of voice about how she used to be in a relationship with Barney and still has feelings for him. Lily says that she has noticed that Robin has made many sarcastic confessions in the past, and she gives herself away by using this same distinctive tone of voice every time. Then we see a Montage of several such incidents, things like Robin wishing the Spice Girls would get back together.
- Barney and Ted pretend to get in a fight. In an attempt to make it look convincing, Barney discovers that he has an impressive right hook.
- Hustle: Ash temporarily Cannot Tell a Lie, so when the mark asks if there's any reason he shouldn't transfer the money, Ash admits to being a con man and tells him that if he transfers the money he'll never see it again. Then he starts laughing and passes it off as a joke, Emma joins in, and the mark laughs with them and transfers the money.
- Jane Doe: Eye Of the Beholder has a scene where Jane/Cathy, as her mom self, tells her child not to mess with her because she's really a spy. She is.
- Life on Mars has a couple of examples:
- In 1x03, Gene Hunt offers a room full of mill workers a fiver to name the murderer. One of them points out a friend, who agrees, identifying the first man as his accomplice. The laughter dries up when Sam Tyler orders them both arrested and charged.
- In 2x06, Simon Lamb confesses to the murder of a student. Since his family's been kidnapped by someone demanding the release of the person convicted of the student's death and he's clearly distraught, the police dismiss his confession out of hand. Turns out...
- On The Listener Toby and the cops are interrogating a magician who is trained as a mentalist. The magician does an impressive Sherlock Scan and does a near perfect cold reading of everyone in the room. In turn Toby uses his telepathy to do the same thing to the magician by simply listening to the magician's thoughts. The magician is very impressed since he thought himself immune to the usual cold reading techniques. At the end of the episode he wants to know how Toby was able to read him so well and Toby admits to being a mind reader. The magician apologizes since he should have know that a fellow magician like Toby would never reveal his secret and it was unprofessional to even ask.
- Luke Cage: In a flashback in season 2, Misty Knight laments to Scarfe how she's frustrated by the lack of proof against a man she knows is defrauding old ladies out of their money. Scarfe suggests, in a dead serious tone, that they steal some drugs from the evidence room, plant them in his car, then pull him over on false pretenses and "find" the drugs and give them an excuse to arrest him. Misty looks at Scarfe in shock...at which point he promptly bursts out laughing as if it was a complete joke. In hindsight, Misty realizes that Scarfe, who later went on to be on Cottonmouth's payroll, was testing her, and since she didn't bite at the easy option, he kept her out of his dirty affairs from then on.
- On Mad Men, Harry is detailing to Stan all the filthy things he would do to Megan Draper. "Hi, Megan," says Stan, looking over Harry's shoulder. Harry says, "Ha ha, very funny," and continues his dirty talk, unaware that Stan wasn't lying about Megan being right behind him. (Stan may not have been trying to sound like he was lying, but after Harry fails to take the hint, Stan then starts encouraging him to dig that hole even deeper.)
- In Mako Mermaids: An H2O Adventure, Mimmi reveals that a dolphin at the water park who has been behaving strangely is pregnant. When asked how she knew, she simply says "I asked her," which gets laughed off. She really did. She is, in fact, fluent in the languages of multiple types of cetacean.
- Malcolm in the Middle: When Lois sees Hal in the living room at the early hours of the morning:Lois: You woke up early, Hal?
Hal: No, I stayed up all night watching Mexican soap operas.
[Lois' expression suggests that he should've just gone with "Yes, I woke up early."]
- In the episode "The Beginning of the End", King Uther orders the execution of a young druid boy, Mordred. Merlin and Morgana notice he's been injured, and hide him in Morgana's room. When Prince Arthur comes into the room to look for the kid (he's doing a city-wide search), he and Morgana share this little gem of an exchange:Arthur: As much as I'd like to stay and talk, the sooner we get started, the sooner we'll be finished.
Morgana: Well, I'll save you the trouble.
Arthur: Trust me, if I could find him, I would.
Morgana: The druid boy's hiding behind the screen.
[cue Merlin freaking out behind the screen, and Arthur's not-so-surreptitious glance toward it]
Morgana: I'm sure your father would love to know how you wasted your time rifling through my things. Go on.
Arthur: So you can have the satisfaction of making me look a fool?
Morgana: In my experience, you don't need any help looking like a fool.
- In "The Darkest Hour", Merlin tells Arthur, "You have no idea how many times I've saved your life." Arthur's response is that when he's king, Merlin can be his court jester.
- Can't forget Brainwashed and Crazy Merlin in "A Servant of Two Masters":Sir Leon: [about a fancy crossbow] Will that do the job?
Merlin: Oh, yes. That will do the job nicely.
Sir Leon: Er, what is the job, exactly?
Merlin: To kill Arthur.
Sir Leon: He's driving you mad, is he?
Merlin: Not for much longer.
- In the episode "The Beginning of the End", King Uther orders the execution of a young druid boy, Mordred. Merlin and Morgana notice he's been injured, and hide him in Morgana's room. When Prince Arthur comes into the room to look for the kid (he's doing a city-wide search), he and Morgana share this little gem of an exchange:
- NCIS borrowed from the above-mentioned scene from True Lies (DiNozzo even cited the movie) when Tony, McGee, and Ziva were being held captive by Somali terrorists who had doped up Tony on truth serum. Tony blithely announced that the lead terrorist was about to die. When the terrorist scoffed that Tony was lying, Tony told him, "I can't lie. And I didn't say I was the one who was going to kill you. Remember when I told you my boss was a sniper?" Cue one very dead terrorist.
- John Amsterdam of New Amsterdam does this a LOT. He tells anyone who asks that he's an immortal 400-year-old. Paraphrased:John: I can read lips.
Partner: I suppose you were also deaf.
John: Was for a while. Back in Normandy. A shell exploded too close for comfort.
- When the title character of Nurse Jackie urges doctor Coop to oppose the introduction of a pharmacy robot that'll put the pharmacist, Eddie, out of a job, he jokingly accuses her of having a "little crush on Eddie", to which she replies:Jackie: Yeah. That's it, Coop, I have a huge crush on Eddie. In fact, we fuck every day at noon. You're a moron.
[cut to the clock in Eddie's pharmacy, where he and Jackie are fucking... at noon]
- The Office:
- A series of suspicious mouse-clicks and taps leads Dwight to believe that Jim and Pam are talking about him behind his back in Morse code. Jim says, sarcastically, that yes, new parents Jim and Pam used their very limited time and money to learn an obsolete form of communication specifically to mess with Dwight.Jim: [later, in interview] Yep, that's exactly what we did.
- In another episode, Jim hides Andy's phone in the ceiling. Later when Andy is fervently looking for it, Jim sarcastically tells him where it is, but Andy's too aggravated to realize the confession-half.
- A series of suspicious mouse-clicks and taps leads Dwight to believe that Jim and Pam are talking about him behind his back in Morse code. Jim says, sarcastically, that yes, new parents Jim and Pam used their very limited time and money to learn an obsolete form of communication specifically to mess with Dwight.
- Person of Interest: Finch attempts to get out of jury duty by explaining that he doesn't trust the government because an evil supercomputer is trying to take over the world. In another episode, in order to get himself admitted to a psychiatric ward, he earnestly tells the doctor about all the people who are trying to kill him.
- In Power Rangers Mystic Force the record-store boss Toby demands to know why his employees keep leaving work abruptly. Yellow Ranger Chip tells him they are Power Rangers and he simply laughs it off; when he walks away, his two teammates look at him with a What-Were-You-Thinking?! look, and he sums it up nicely: "The truth is hardest to believe."
- In The Pretender, Jarod is completely honest about how he came by his impressive skills. Since he is a genius who can learn things extremely quickly, these answers are along the lines of "I learned it from a book" or "I forged my transfer papers". Almost everyone assumes he's joking.
- In Primeval, after a mammoth has ravaged the M25 Motorway, this exchange occurs between Jenny and an Intrepid Reporter:Reporter: I've seen the pictures. That thing is too big to be an elephant.
Jenny: Do you know what? You're right. It's actually a mammoth.
Reporter: I could do without the wind up.
- In the Profit pilot Jim Profit blackmails his boss's secretary to leak a corporate scandal so he can pin it on one of his rivals. When someone at the board meeting calls for lie detector tests to find the culprit, Profit dissuades them by spinning a story about how easy it would be for anyone to have done it, giving himself as an example with the exact scenario he actually used.
- Psych: When a criminal makes Shawn prove his Psychic Powers by telling how many fingers he's holding up behind his back, Shawn can see the fingers using an overly-elaborate series of reflections including a TV, mirror, and glass of water. When he tells the criminal that that's what's going on, he, naturally, doesn't believe him.
- From Pushing Daisies, though it was an actual confession mistaken for sarcasm:Olive: Are you and the pie-maker in some kind of cahoots together?
Chuck: I died. He brought me back to life. Cahoots enough for you?
Olive: If you don't want to tell me, just say so.
- In Revenge, Emily's friend Ashley warns her that Emily is suspected in a prank that resulted in all of the Hamptonite women having their secrets revealed in public. Emily points out that she was a victim too, then confesses, "That's exactly what I wanted. All my most embarrassing confessions [about my boyfriend] broadcast for all the world to see."
- Sabrina the Teenage Witch seems to be very fond of this one. In one particular episode, her aunts' accountant shows up, turning out to work inside a file cabinet. When mortal friend Valerie walks in and hears noises within the cabinet, Sabrina simply says "Oh, yeah, there's a guy in there." Valerie laughs and moves on.
- In a sketch on Saturday Night Live Will Forte plays a registered sex offender who just moved into a neighborhood and is going door to door alerting people (thus complying with Megan's Law) on Halloween; his plan is for people to think it's a Halloween "costume".
- The Secret World of Alex Mack:
- The ingredients in some exotic curry Alex ate have reacted with the GC-161 to give her Super Strength. Unfortunately, it wore off exactly when she and her Secret Keepers were testing the ability, and Ray needs to bring her the rest of the curry so she can lift the Earth cat off her foot. When he finds her father about to eat the last of it, Ray grabs it, explains the above at Motor Mouth speed, and runs off.
- In another episode, Alex bribes her friend Louis into impersonating her for a doctor's visit. He manages to fool everyone, but almost spoils it at the end; when the doctor reveals that he plays up the Mad Doctor persona for his amusement, Louis angrily retorts that he was just pretending to be Alex Mack and the doctor fell for it.
- 7Days has the main character casually give an accurate account of the secret government Time Travel program on live television, including the plots of several episodes, and the fact that they pulled him out of an asylum to fly the time machine. The reporter is fired for letting him on the air.
- Inverted in Skins when Emily came out of the closet. When her father asked what she had been doing that afternoon, she answered with perfect honesty that she had had sex with her girlfriend, but her dad assumed that she was being sarcastic and apologized for snooping.
- Clark Kent has used the same tactic as in the animated series on Smallville, such as when he and Pete discover Rose Grier's dead body stuffed in a cupboard:Pete: How'd you know she was in there?
Clark: Because I can see right through the door, Pete.
Pete: Very funny, Sherlock.
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: In the series 3 episode "Second Skin", the crew has to infiltrate Cardassian space, sneak onto Cardassia Prime and rescue the kidnapped Major Kira from the jaws of the Obsidian Order. Since they need his help, they take Garak with them but he's supposed to be confined to crew quarters until they reach Cardassia. Odo drags Garak onto the bridge for lurking suspiciously around some phaser banks to be given a reprimand by Sisko. Garak sarcastically tells them that he was merely going for a walk because the quarters are making him feel claustrophobic. No-one believes him but the whole incident, including the length of the exchange caused by his sarcastic "lie" does the job of getting him onto the bridge and then keeping him there long enough for trouble with Cardassian checkpoints to occur in his presence so he can step in and solve the crisis before it gets out of hand. Then, in series 5, it's finally revealed that Garak was telling the truth about suffering from claustrophobia: he has a very acute form of the condition that utterly debilitates him when it flares up.
- Played straight in Stingray (1964) when Agent X-2-Zero, upon being questioned by a security guard, tells him that he has kidnapped Troy Tempest and locked him in his car boot.
- In Supergirl, when Kara is asked by a waitress how she stays so thin, despite eating so many sticky buns, her reply: "I'm an alien." Ironically, this same waitress admires Supergirl as a role model for her daughter.
- Invoked (and then subverted). Sam and Dean need to be admitted into a mental ward for a case, so they earnestly explain to the doctor that they're monster hunters. Naturally nobody believes them except the monster they're looking for, who tells them how stupid it was of them to do so.
- In a flashback in another episode, teenage Dean has been sent to a boys' home after being caught shoplifting. When asked how he got his black eye, he sarcastically replies, "Werewolf."
- Way back in Season 4, Chuck Surely aka God's mortal guise described himself as a "cruel, cruel, capricious god." who puts the Winchesters through hell for entertainment value. The finale of Season 14 reveals just how cruel and capricious God really is.
- In the Taxi episode "Crime and Punishment", Louie has been embezzling money from the company, and when this money is discovered to be missing, he attempts to frame Jeff in hopes that the whole thing will blow over without incident. Alex, who all along suspected that Louie was covering his own crime, threatens to turn him in if he didn't himself. Louie confesses in private with their manager, who immediately breaks down laughing in disbelief, and even drops charges against Jeff because of how ridiculous he find the idea of Louie committing this theft. When Alex arrives to ensure that Louie confessed, they both partake in hilarity over his "alleged" dishonesty, with Louie even pretending to steal a piece of office equipment on the way out.
- And afterwards, the boss invites Louie to play golf with him. Louie sarcastically admits that he cheats on the score.
- Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles:
- In the first-season finale, Morris asks Cameron whether the car she's standing next to is hers. She responds by telling him it belongs to the man she just killed and was loading into the trunk when he found her. The particularly hilarious part is how it's impossible to tell if she was actually using a sarcastic confession, since the car did presumably belong to a criminal she'd killed because his boss was threatening John and his family... but she might have just killed him and hidden his body elsewhere, instead of the trunk.
- In the episode "Alpine Fields", one almost hopes that Lauren telling her father that she was looking at lesbian porn was a Sarcastic Confession gone wrong, and the resulting outrage was just a cover-up (she was kind of butch).
- On Veep, Selina's team holds a meeting, then after dispersing, immediately re-assemble without Tom James so they can discuss him behind his back. Once that meeting disperses, Mike doubles back to make sure they're not having a third meeting to discuss him, but Ben, the last person still there, deadpans that that meeting's not 'til later. As we find out several episodes later, Selina's team did indeed immediately reconvene after Mike leaves to discuss firing him.
- Veronica Mars:
- Veronica uses this every so often on her dad. She has a tendency to give him this kind of answer even when she isn't actually doing anything shady (e.g., answering "How was your date?" with "Lousy conversation, but the sex was fantastic!" when the most that happened was a peck on the cheek), which makes it work better.
- One example:Keith: What are you doing tonight?
Veronica: I'll be meeting two hookers at my boyfriend's place.
- And in a later episode, when she answers the phone.Veronica: If you're wondering what I'm doing at this time of night, I'm hanging outside a convenience store, eating corn nuts and watching strippers.
- White Collar:
- Neal Caffrey, as a quintessential con man, frequently pulls this.Peter: You once told me you never lied to me and you never will. So, I need to know something. The first time Kramer and I went after you for the Degas, how'd you switch the paintings?
Neal: I snuck up to the penthouse, pulled the swap, then BASE-jumped off the building and landed on Wall Street.
Peter: Fine. Don't tell me.
- Neal also invokes this in the first season finale, wherein he tells everyone at a party that he's an art thief who's about to rob them. Though the party guests laugh it off, the security guards don't, and they haul him off. Turns out it was all part of the plan.
- Neal Caffrey, as a quintessential con man, frequently pulls this.
- Happens on Wings when Brian is trying to figure out if Joe slept with Alex (whom both the brothers have been pursuing).Brian: Joey, you're my brother. Just tell me. Whatever you say, I'll believe it.
Joe: All right. I didn't sleep with her.
Joe: Okay. I slept with her.
- The Wire: The district commanders are under pressure to reduce crime in their districts. What does Major Colvin say? "I thought I might legalize drugs."
- In the first episode of Wolfblood, Maddy goes to school in wellington boots and is asked why. She comments that her shoes were eaten by a werewolf. The real reason: her wolfblood mother had used the shoe as a chew toy while transformed under the full moon. In a later episode Rhydian's brother tries to isolate Rhydian by announcing that that Rhydian's a wolfblood to a group of his classmates. Everyone just laughs.
- In an episode of Workaholics, Blake does these after being caught wearing Ders' underwear. He quickly drops the sarcasm.Ders: Who wears underwear under swim trunks anyway? Now I know you peed in 'em.
Blake Yeah, I peed in 'em, right! Actually, I did pee in 'em.