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  #51  
Old 05-17-2020, 12:31 AM
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The geeky member of the good side's team who can always get into anyone's password protected computer.
  #52  
Old 05-17-2020, 12:52 AM
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I read a lot of whodunnits, and I have a couple of tired things I'd like to see the back of.

The least likely suspect. This is just lazy plotting. When you get one of these, all you have to do is watch for the one person who is always around but not a central character and who is never a suspect until the last 30 pages, and that's your culprit. I just finished a book, A Bitter Feast by Deborah Crombie that really suffered from this scourge. Perry Mason was really bad with this trope. And Agatha Christie smashed it with her very first published book.

The detective's family is at risk from the killer. I guess this must happen once in a while in real life, but I won't read one, and if it comes up in the middle of a book I will just stop reading it.

Serial killers, and now the serial killer is after the detective or the detective's family. Give it a rest already, there must be 100 times as many serial killers in books and on TV dramas than there are in real life. One show that lasted for several seasons, that's all it was about.

Food, or cats, or probably both. I won't read any mystery that centers around food or cats. Dogs don't seem to be much of a problem, probably because they're not annoying.

Not a trope, but I'm gonna mention it anyway: book series where the author is just phoning it in. Case in point: the latest Richard Jury mystery by Martha Grimes. Completely disjointed plot, characters with neither character nor purpose, just a waste of time to read. I hate that.

Thank you for allowing me to get my digs in on those two books. With those digs or without them, my main four points are what I wanted to cover.
  #53  
Old 05-17-2020, 01:28 AM
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When all is forgiven for the villain at the end just because they had a moment of regret. Doesn't matter if they tortured kittens, experimented on infants, and caused the genocide of billions of people. The protagonist with a strong connection to the villain made a moving speech, and now the villain is one of the good guys again. Often the villain will get to do a heroic sacrifice at the cost of their life, so they never have to deal with the consequences of their atrocities.

Another trope I hate is the hero who will do anything to faceless mooks without blinking an eye, but using violence against the main bad guy would make the hero "just like them."
  #54  
Old 05-17-2020, 02:02 AM
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Dying before the can get out the vital clue. "The killer is -" gasps and dies.
  #55  
Old 05-17-2020, 02:07 AM
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Ghosts that experience or are bound by gravity and can’t interact with the physical world until they learn, but are able to stand and walk like normal, as if the walls aren’t there, but the floors are.

ETA: Or, more generally, just ghosts period.

Last edited by ASL v2.0; 05-17-2020 at 02:10 AM.
  #56  
Old 05-17-2020, 02:23 AM
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Bad guy plans that require EVERYTHING to go right to even remotely work, even worse if his plan involves knowing exactly what the heroes will do to the very second so he can plan elaborate subterfuge/escapes days in advance. Bonus points if his plan requires him to be captured in the first place to even get the plan started.

I'd always wanted to see a movie where a bad guy has an elaborate plan that immediately falls apart the moment it starts, you see it all the time from the heroes perspective (the Scooby-Doo Plan I think it's called) but you never see the bad guy plan to be captured to get into the heroes lair, only to find out that instead of the heroes guarding himself it's somebody else entirely whom he has no real counter for.
  #57  
Old 05-17-2020, 02:35 AM
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Cars of widely disparate performance, in a very closely matched chase scene.
  #58  
Old 05-17-2020, 03:22 AM
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I stopped watching Pitch Perfect half-way thru because of their racist portrayal of East Asian women as unfriendly and interchangeable.
  #59  
Old 05-17-2020, 04:12 AM
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Characters that exist only to be endangered and get rescued. Basically every child and female in any action movie before about 1990.
  #60  
Old 05-17-2020, 04:14 AM
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Crotchety-but-lovable (and just about to retire) old police inspector is teamed-up with young hotshot who's skeptical of his partner's old-school methods. They grudgingly begin to respect each other and go on to solve crime after crime, all the while sniping at each other's ways of doing things. Extra points if the old guy has a hot granddaughter the young hotshot is attracted to.

This is the basis of 90% of the shows on Acorn, BBC America, and any PBS outlet that shows British imports on Saturday night.
  #61  
Old 05-17-2020, 04:32 AM
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Characters that exist only to be endangered and get rescued. Basically every child and female in any action movie before about 1990.
Could be worse. In video games, you have to escort them places and keep them alive
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  #62  
Old 05-17-2020, 05:45 AM
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Person gets knocked on the head and has amnesia.
Person A saves the life of person B. Out of gratitude B does so much for person A that person A gets tired of it and has to find a way to stop it.
A person/corporation attempts to buy all the properties in an area. There is one holdout, thwarting the person/corporation.
  #63  
Old 05-17-2020, 08:54 AM
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Bookish people who can read all the languages.

Omnicompetent scientists. (Who are equally highly trained in nuclear physics, biochemistry, electrical engineering, programming, paleontology, sociology, taphonomy, and whatever other specialty is needed for the episode.)

People who can recognize everything by glancing at a microscope slide. (Yes, this blood is definitely human. AB+. They were poisoned with ricin mixed in their Van Camp brand canned chili...no, wait--it was the Walmart brand version, which is canned in the same factory, but has a different oxygen isotope ratio in the hydroxyl radicals.)

Last edited by Darren Garrison; 05-17-2020 at 08:57 AM.
  #64  
Old 05-17-2020, 08:57 AM
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Bookish person who can read all the languages.

Omnicompetent scientists. (Who are equally highly trained in nuclear physics, biochemistry, electrical engineering, programming, paleontology, sociology, taphonomy, and whatever other specialty is needed for tge episode.)

People who can recognize everything by glancing at a microscope slide. (Yes, this blood is definitely human. AB+. They were poisoned with ricin mixed in their Van Camp brand canned chili...no, wait--it was the Walmart's brand labled version, which is canned in the same factory--I can tell by the oxygen isotope ratio in the hydroxyl radicals!)
Police: We're looking for a guy who bought pencils here three months ago.

Walmart guy: Yeah, I remember him; he was 5'8", blue eyes, blond hair and left-handed. I've got his address right here. I think I saved his fingerprints on this coin.
  #65  
Old 05-17-2020, 09:12 AM
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When all is forgiven for the villain at the end just because they had a moment of regret. Doesn't matter if they tortured kittens, experimented on infants, and caused the genocide of billions of people. The protagonist with a strong connection to the villain made a moving speech, and now the villain is one of the good guys again. Often the villain will get to do a heroic sacrifice at the cost of their life, so they never have to deal with the consequences of their atrocities.
This is one i’ve noticed as well. Typically in older stories the bad guy who has a change of heart, if they’ve committed any atrocities like murder, only get to die a heroic death that helps out the hero, they don’t get to walk away and have a long happy life afterward. This has changed some in more modern stories, like Jesse Pinkman on Breaking Bad.
  #66  
Old 05-17-2020, 09:14 AM
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A slight corollary to this is the hero who gets the drop on the bad guy after a fight or gun battle, seems about to kill him, but says “no, I’m not going to kill you- I’m not like you”. The hero is then momentarily distracted, most likely by the female love interest giving him a thank-you hug, giving the bad guy a chance to bring out a hidden weapon and try to kill the hero, giving the hero no choice but to kill him after all.
This is also a corollary to the classic case in which the bad guy/evil robot/extraterrestrial is temporarily incapacitated by the hero/heroine, who instead of finishing him off flees, allowing the bad guy to recover and resume the pursuit.

Then there's the Law & Order trope, in which forensic autopsies and extremely complicated/rare medical tests and DNA analyses are completed within 12 hours of the homicide, allowing the case to be solved within the show's hour-long time frame. There's a detrimental impact in real life, since people assume such a rapid turnaround is standard, and that forensic pathologists automatically order esoteric testing on every body that comes through their doors.

*“no, I’m not going to kill you- I’m not like you”. - Sidney Poitier had lines similar to this in multiple movies.

Last edited by Jackmannii; 05-17-2020 at 09:16 AM.
  #67  
Old 05-17-2020, 09:23 AM
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And in that situation, you can be absolutely sure that the cure won't be administered in the first 12 hours and 33 minutes.
Exactly. It's as if the writers don't know any other ways of creating dramatic tension.
  #68  
Old 05-17-2020, 10:08 AM
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Anything to do with Zombies.
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  #69  
Old 05-17-2020, 10:15 AM
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Super genius criminals with designs on world domination, usually based on comically flimsy motivation. They're always 10 steps ahead! Such lazy writing.
  #70  
Old 05-17-2020, 10:17 AM
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The thermonuclear countdown girl. That is the supremely calm women's voice with either a Middle Atlantic or English accent who voices the countdown clock of the device that is about to blow up the world.

Action hero fighting/getting out of their shackles/racing across town
Operator voice: "The nuclear bomb will go off in...... 5 minutes"
More action/ escaping/getting stuck in traffic jams
Operator voice: "The nuclear bomb will go off in........4 minutes"

We get the juxtaposition between the frantic action and the calm voice. Just don't.

Last edited by Long Time First Time; 05-17-2020 at 10:18 AM.
  #71  
Old 05-17-2020, 10:47 AM
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The police team is entering a building where an armed suspect may be hiding. After getting in the door, the leader makes some complicated hand signal, points, and a team member nods and heads in that direction. There is never any confusion about who is to go where because these hand signals are perfect and there are always just enough officers to cover every direction. Cut to one officer entering a room. There is a sound. The officer turns to shoot but the sound turns out to be a cat, a parrot, a child, or an innocent person who responds in a long frantic dialog of non-english. Meanwhile our hero enters a room where we can now see the manic-looking villain holding a gun around a concealed corner just waiting for our hero to get into position. The hero does. There is a shootout. The villain loses.
  #72  
Old 05-17-2020, 11:05 AM
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The "super spy / assassin". James Bond / Jason Bourne trope for men, Nikita / Alias / Red Sparrow / Black Widow trope for women.

IRL, spies are supposed to inconspicuously infiltrate the enemies organization, gathering information, and quietly pass it along. People who you shouldn't notice. Like I can just picture the memo being sent to a intelligence agency's local station:

CONFIDENTIAL: TOP SECRET
***** FLASH PRIORITY ALERT *****

Be on the lookout for suspected enemy operatives:
Suspect 1:
Codename: Unknown. Possibly some form of double (or single) entendre.
Sex: Female
Height: 5'10"
Weight: 115 lbs
Appearance: Dressed in black Prada clothing. Will likely be the most attractive woman in the area. May be in "disguise" in a blond or day-glow red wig.


Suspect 2:
Codename: None. Likely using actual name.
Sex: Male
Height: 6'2"
Weight: 225 lbs
Appearance: May be wearing either a tuxedo or black head to toe Dolce Gabbana casualwear. Also most likely most attractive man in the area.

Suspects are assumed to be armed with exotic Belgian military weaponry and extremely dangerous. Approach with extreme caution.

Suspects were last scene exiting a stolen McLaren F1 supercar after it crashed through the front of a street café and then parkouring across a construction crane for the old cathedral renovations next to the Chinese embassy.

Last edited by msmith537; 05-17-2020 at 11:06 AM.
  #73  
Old 05-17-2020, 11:11 AM
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Crotchety-but-lovable (and just about to retire) old police inspector is teamed-up with young hotshot who's skeptical of his partner's old-school methods. They grudgingly begin to respect each other and go on to solve crime after crime, all the while sniping at each other's ways of doing things. Extra points if the old guy has a hot granddaughter the young hotshot is attracted to.

This is the basis of 90% of the shows on Acorn, BBC America, and any PBS outlet that shows British imports on Saturday night.


You left out this: the about-to-retire character must die!


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  #74  
Old 05-17-2020, 11:18 AM
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Let's not forget people running away from something, having to turn and look back multiple times while fleeing.

Just run away, dammit! Why risk tripping or running into a tree or falling down a hill because you needed to check over your shoulder that the baddie was still chasing you?
  #75  
Old 05-17-2020, 11:39 AM
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Then there's the Law & Order trope, in which forensic autopsies and extremely complicated/rare medical tests and DNA analyses are completed within 12 hours of the homicide, allowing the case to be solved within the show's hour-long time frame. There's a detrimental impact in real life, since people assume such a rapid turnaround is standard, and that forensic pathologists automatically order esoteric testing on every body that comes through their doors.
I think actually that's the CSI trope, that L&O and NCIS picked up.

Last edited by JRDelirious; 05-17-2020 at 11:40 AM.
  #76  
Old 05-17-2020, 11:40 AM
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Anything to do with Zombies.
Boom. Thank-you.

How about a genre/category, like, almost every single TV drama?
  #77  
Old 05-17-2020, 11:53 AM
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Drinking a quart of booze is the answer to any minor setback.

A really tired meme: Divorced semi-rogue cop with a rebellious daughter who is constantly berating him, but who really loves him, and who then gets kidnapped and has to be rescued by her dad, who murders all the bad guys after throwing his badge on the sarge's desk; tearful hugs. Or any variations on that theme.
  #78  
Old 05-17-2020, 11:54 AM
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Not the main hero who usually gets a happy ending, but if one of the lesser good guys is about to do something dangerous, he better not say anything that hints of the future, like “see you on the other side” or “let’s get a beer after this” because he will almost certainly not survive it.
  #79  
Old 05-17-2020, 12:13 PM
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Boom. Thank-you.

How about a genre/category, like, almost every single TV drama?
A zombie uprising would be put down pretty fast IRL.

Zombies have no strategy and tactics, no self preservation instincts, no weapons other than their own bodies.

An armored van and some rifles can easily kill hundreds of them. Anyone who walls themselves off in the second story or higher of a building could easily pick them off.

I don't get why humans are always so helpless against zombies in films.
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  #80  
Old 05-17-2020, 12:20 PM
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A man and a woman start out despising one another and then fall in love.
  #81  
Old 05-17-2020, 12:24 PM
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Police: We're looking for a guy who bought pencils here three months ago.

Walmart guy: Yeah, I remember him; he was 5'8", blue eyes, blond hair and left-handed. I've got his address right here. I think I saved his fingerprints on this coin.
But before they get there, they have to browbeat him:

Police: We're looking for a guy who bought pencils here three months ago.

Walmart guy: *continues to stock tuna on the shelves. Hey pal, you know how many people come through here in a day?

Police: Here's his picture, why don't you take a look at it?

Walmart guy: *looks at picture. I told you, we get a lot of guys through here.

Police: You didn't even look at the picture. Stop what you are doing and take a good look.

Walmart guy: *stops stocking tuna and looks again. You know, I think I do remember that guy. There was something kind of funny about him.
  #82  
Old 05-17-2020, 12:27 PM
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A really tired meme: Divorced semi-rogue cop with a rebellious daughter who is constantly berating him, but who really loves him, and who then gets kidnapped and has to be rescued by her dad, who murders all the bad guys after throwing his badge on the sarge's desk; tearful hugs. Or any variations on that theme.
Yes, Hollywood seems to be very, um, taken with this trope.
  #83  
Old 05-17-2020, 12:31 PM
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The hero (or anybody, really) gets clocked over the head hard enough to knock them out, and then they wake up and go about their business without any ill effects.

Also, people surrounded by gunfire and wearing no ear protection, with no ill effects (not even temporary hearing impairment). Guns are loud!

Last edited by Infovore; 05-17-2020 at 12:32 PM.
  #84  
Old 05-17-2020, 12:40 PM
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Also, people surrounded by gunfire and wearing no ear protection, with no ill effects (not even temporary hearing impairment). Guns are loud!
So are helicopters. Constantly seeing people in helicopters just talking normally without headphones. Impossible. Even in modern passenger helicopters it's not that much quieter on the inside than the outside.
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Old 05-17-2020, 12:52 PM
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Add another vote for "Hyperintelligent serial killer who invariably outsmarts the Hero Team, occasionally kidnapping their loved ones to put in deathtraps or just kill, and who has a neat little trademark he leaves at the scenes of his murders."

To this, I will add "... plus, when you think you've caught him? It's just one of his henchmen, who for some reason is willing to take the fall for his beloved serial killer boss."

I'll raise you, "...and it turns out that a member of the Hero Team was a member of Killer Team all along, he just loves that serial killer so much."

Bonus points if said serial killer is an abusive jerk, and there is no logical reason for his fan club to love him so much; he just has this amazing magnetic personality that we, the audience, may or may not ever get to see. Plus, maybe he has mind control drugs that always work.

Yes, I am sick to death of these tropes.
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  #86  
Old 05-17-2020, 12:59 PM
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Bonus points if said serial killer is an abusive jerk, and there is no logical reason for his fan club to love him so much....
Related is the main bad guy who’s frequently killing off his henchmen, because they reluctantly give him bad news, or to make an example to the other henchmen, or just in a fit of rage. You’d think word would get out on the henchman circuit and he’d have a hard time hiring replacement henchmen.
  #87  
Old 05-17-2020, 01:00 PM
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Big problems with talking in general. People are always having normal conversations in conditions where they wouldn't be able to hear each other, or alternatively people standing a few feet away who should have clearly heard every word of someone else's conversation hears nothing.
  #88  
Old 05-17-2020, 01:11 PM
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Walmart guy: *continues to stock tuna on the shelves.
I forgot this one! When the detectives go to someone's workplace, the person being interviewed doesn't stop working. They just continue stacking boxes or whatever. After brusquely answering a couple of questions, they say, "Look, I got work to do," and walk away. Or, if it's somebody working on a car, they slide back under it to indicate that the interview is over. They're so blasé that you'd think cops showing up is a daily occurrence.
  #89  
Old 05-17-2020, 01:12 PM
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Nothing takes me out of an action flick faster than magical machineguns, with their bottomless magazines.
  #90  
Old 05-17-2020, 01:25 PM
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People falling long distances, like several stories or down an elevator shaft, then saving themselves but grabbing a railing or window ledge.
What I particularly can't stand is the "dangling by one hand" trope, whether or not the dangler got there by a long fall or not. Nearly every action-adventure movie seems to have at least on example. Sometimes the dangler is holding on to a ledge by one hand, sometimes they are being rescued by the hero or a friend who is clutching their hand. Sometimes they even have others dangling from their own legs. How many people can hold on to a ledge and support their own body for more than a few seconds before slipping off? How many people (superheroes excepted) can pull the full weight of someone up by one arm?

Peter Jackson is particularly prone to this. I'm wondering if there is any Peter Jackson movie that doesn't include at least one example of this.
  #91  
Old 05-17-2020, 01:32 PM
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Let's not forget people running away from something, having to turn and look back multiple times while fleeing.

Just run away, dammit! Why risk tripping or running into a tree or falling down a hill because you needed to check over your shoulder that the baddie was still chasing you?
Or that trope's close relative: While on foot and being chased by a vehicle ( ostensibly to get run over ) the hapless chase-ee continues to run RIGHT. DOWN. THE. MIDDLE. OF. THE. ROAD. without deviating, let alone ducking into places that a vehicle cannot easily follow. Of course as well, the whole chase seen is shown from different points of view with multiple quick clips showing speeding vehicles, the anguished looks of the chased, leading us to believe it takes a car doing 70 mph about a minute and a half to overtake a runner a hundred or so feet ahead of it.

Kudos on one of the Austin Powers movies whereby they parodied this effect during a "chase" scene involving a forklift.

Last edited by BrickBat; 05-17-2020 at 01:34 PM.
  #92  
Old 05-17-2020, 01:45 PM
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What I particularly can't stand is the "dangling by one hand" trope, whether or not the dangler got there by a long fall or not. Nearly every action-adventure movie seems to have at least on example. Sometimes the dangler is holding on to a ledge by one hand, sometimes they are being rescued by the hero or a friend who is clutching their hand. Sometimes they even have others dangling from their own legs. How many people can hold on to a ledge and support their own body for more than a few seconds before slipping off? How many people (superheroes excepted) can pull the full weight of someone up by one arm?

Peter Jackson is particularly prone to this. I'm wondering if there is any Peter Jackson movie that doesn't include at least one example of this.
I'm pretty sure that there was no scene like that in The Lovely Bones.
  #93  
Old 05-17-2020, 01:47 PM
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Sitcom episodes based on lying to spare someone's feelings or surprise them.

Supposedly smart people doing stupid things. I had to top watching Legends Of Tomorrow because of this. Every character made every single decision emotionally instead of thinking it through.
  #94  
Old 05-17-2020, 01:54 PM
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Hero is in a taxi and there's a huge traffic jam.

Hero: "Can't you go any faster?"
Taxi Driver: "Sorry, man. There's no way around it!"
Hero: "I'll give you 100 bucks if you get me there!"

Taxi driver suddenly pulls out and goes 100 mph in sudden opening only he can find.
  #95  
Old 05-17-2020, 02:18 PM
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Police: We're looking for a guy who bought pencils here three months ago.

Walmart guy: Yeah, I remember him; he was 5'8", blue eyes, blond hair and left-handed. I've got his address right here. I think I saved his fingerprints on this coin.
Or the determined detective or head cop barking out demands for tons of detailed information for his staff to acquire, stuff that'll be hard to acquire even with a computer database. The old 50s show 'Highway Patrol' never fails to deliver in this regard.

We'll see the head honcho ( in this case, Broderick Crawford ) give out rapid-fire, highly authoritative instructions to one of his deputies:

"First! Get me a list of every left-handed baptist with a "mom" tattoo in the state of California!"

"Second! I need a rundown on every vehicle sold in San Bernadino county in the last 18 months, organized by color, camshaft duration, rear axle ratio and gross weight!"

"Third! I'll meet you in an hour at the checkpoint XYZ along the county road near the intersection of highways AA and BB!"

"Get to it!"
  #96  
Old 05-17-2020, 02:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bowlweevils View Post
I stopped watching Pitch Perfect half-way thru because of their racist portrayal of East Asian women as unfriendly and interchangeable.
Pitch Perfect is an example of another one - the competitor/group that is eliminated from a competition, but wait, one of the qualifiers is disqualified for some reason and they're back in - and despite always getting the final qualifying spot in each round, somehow, in the end, they win. (Other examples: Planes; Akeela and the Bee)
  #97  
Old 05-17-2020, 02:28 PM
nightshadea is offline
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in the 80s and 90s not so much now .. But if anything bad happened to anyone from about 10 to 18 it happened in you know the juvenile dive bar :a video game arcade!

If anyone of that age acquired anything illegal ie booze drugs guns it was in an arcade...... thats not to say it never happened but ......

these days its the chuck e cheese type pizza parlor aka "family fun center"
  #98  
Old 05-17-2020, 02:37 PM
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Once, just once, I'd like to see a bit of realism from a diner or bar patron upon preparing to leave. Something like ( to a waitress for example ) "Hey I'd like to leave you something, but all I've got is a twenty. Can you break this for me to give me change? Thanks."

But alas, we see the protagonist get up ( after having taken all of 2 bites of his meal ) pull some unspecified collection of bills from his pocket ( without even seeing their denomination to parcel them out ) and hurriedly drop them on the table, and leave.
  #99  
Old 05-17-2020, 02:44 PM
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Oh my favorite on cop shows since tv started :

They're looking for someone usually a prostitute and a whole bunch of people get arrested mostly other prostitutes and once they tell the cops the little bit they need to know .... everyone goes back to business like nothing happened

like law and order svu there looking for a child sex trafficking victim whos probably 13 being forced to work the streets because he watched his sister who was forced to do the same get murdered

Well they go to a park where apparently all underage sex workers go

they get lucky because another prostitute whos about the same age is approaching johns for him since he's shy and finds the officer looking for him deals set up and he's taken into custody ... but after questioning the other 13-year-old shes let go and starts working the park again

Does that even happen in real life? i mean maybe for adults but cps would be there with a wagon id think

Last edited by nightshadea; 05-17-2020 at 02:48 PM.
  #100  
Old 05-17-2020, 03:14 PM
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Retired cop/ex-merc/former special forces/all-around bad dude gets called out of retirement to perform one last task because he's the only one who can do it. The geriatric hero (yeah, I'm looking at you, Liam Neeson, Clint Eastwood, and soon to be Tom Cruise) is somehow able to still leap tall buldings, crash cars, dodge bullets, and thrash groups of much younger men with relative ease, not to mention being able to satisfy the cravings of a beauty who is 30 years his junior. These are guys who, IRL, are probably gasping for air after climbing their front steps.
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