Captain Obvious

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He strives to be Mr. Exposition... But there's something wrong with his exposition. Most of the time, whatever he has to say should already be obvious—both to the viewers and to any other character with half a brain. After saying anything, another character might state "Gee, you think?" Or if someone's attempt at humor was disrupted, they might say Don't Explain the Joke.

In other words, Captain Obvious states the obvious. This means that his statements are self-evident.

In some cases, this is justified because Captain Obvious is also The Ditz, or so puzzled by something that he can't help but state, well, the obvious.

See also As You Know, Exactly What It Says on the Tin, Narrating the Obvious, Shaped Like Itself, Department of Redundancy Department and Captain Obvious Aesop. Not to be confused with Captain Oblivious. Sometimes, may be demoted to Commander Contrarian, a commander who disagrees. It Makes Sense in Context is what fans will say when other people bring it up. Slightly justified if everybody else is Captain Oblivious.

This trope sometimes overlaps with Mathematician's Answer, when Captain Obvious is stating the obvious to be a smartass or to avoid giving a more helpful answer to a question. It can also overlap with Non-Answer if the answer is self-evident and clearly not what the questioner wanted to know.

Incidentally, do not confuse this trope with Lampshade Hanging. In the case of a Captain Obvious, a character notes something that is self-evident to the characters as well as to the audience (us). A Lampshade Hanging occurs when something that is obvious to us but should go unnoticed by the characters, is noticed by the characters. Note that you can click on the words in blue, and they will take you to a new article.

That was a description!

Being one is often the cause of this reaction: You Can Talk Obviously.

Examples: (The folders below contain examples of this trope.)


Protip: The examples can be read by clicking the folders below!

Advertising (this folder is about Advertising)[edit | hide | hide all]

All examples found in advertising campaigns are here!

  • In the flesh, with a catchy jingle to boot.
  • One of Bud Light's "Real Men of Genius" ads is dedicated to athletes-turned-commentators and mentions their giving such critical information as "The team that scores the most points will win the game". Followed by the rock singer intoning "I did not know that!", and not sounding like he's in Sarcasm Mode.
  • In the commercials for The Book of Eli, the voiceover boasts "Gary Oldman makes a great villain!"
  • From a commercial for age-defying makeup: "Age spots make you look old."
  • Will Power (yes, that is his real name) opens a commercial with this gem: "In Indy Car racing, it's all about speed!"
  • An older Allstate ad said "Here's a myth: Nothing bad will ever happen."
  • Hotels.com has been using an actual Captain Obvious character in an advertising campaign starting in 2015.

Anime and Manga (this folder is about Anime and Manga)[edit | hide]

All examples found in Japanese manga and animation are here!

  • One example that occurs in multiple anime and manga is the translation of the phrase abunai (危ない), which is both an adjective meaning "dangerous" and an interjection meaning "Look out!" Often translators will mix up the two, having a character shout "This is dangerous!" while something dangerous is about to happen to one of their friends.
    • This seems to be a staple in many dubs and translations...
  • A Fan Sub of Fate/stay night translates one of Shirou Emiya's one-liners into "People die if they are killed". Strangely, the only reason he said that was because he had recently been killed himself, and didn't die.

Shiki: Dead people can't be alive!

  • Monster explodes*

Duelist: Your monster has been vanquished!

Téa: Now we're at the museum!
Yami: I know.

    • Or:

Tristan: In a few hours the sun will rise!
[Once Yugi loses some cards from his children's' card game.]
Tristan: If it's any consolation, in a few hours the sun will rise!
[Later, as the sun rises.]
Tristan: See, I was right about the sun!

      • That's actually what he said in the anime. Well, the first part anyway.
    • And, from the movie:

Anubis: Shut up! You're going to die! And then you'll be dead! Because I killed you!

"What?! My attack's not working!"
"Huh?"
"Great Scott! It's not!"
"That can't be right! Can it?"
"You bet it's right! My machine monster has magic-resistant armor that makes it resistant to all magic attacks!"
"That's why he played a machine monster! It's resistant to magic! And not just magic monsters, but magic attacks, too!"

  • Tetsuro in the new Guyver series sometimes falls into this. When he's not constantly shouting "son of a bitch!".
    • Following Guyot's careful explanation of the process used to create Zoanoids, including Tetsuro stating that they are human in shock.

Tetsuro: Wait. You mean that Zoanids are made out of people?
Guyot/Audience: Face Palm

  • Manta from Shaman King has a tendency for this. It gets rather grating after a while.
  • The Bronze Saints from Saint Seiya: Hades chapter have a tendency to repeat, WORD FOR WORD, what someone else just said.
  • Spoofed in Bobobo-Bo Bo-bobo:

Guy Boy: I'll defeat you so bad you'll be defeated!
Narrator: Yes, he knew Hatenko's secret weakness! That defeating him would...defeat him!
Dengakuman: Wait, hold on! That's MY weakness!

Viral: Damn barbaric humans! Can't you beat us fist-to-fist you cowards?
Kamina: This rock is my fist!
Viral: A rock is a rock. It's not a damn fist!
Kamina: Is stating the obvious the best you got, dumbass?

Setsuna F. Seiei: (Upon seeing the Masurao for the first time) That Mobile Suit is... NO FLAG?

    • A bit earlier, when Setsuna and Saji meets for the first time:

Saji: Oh. You must be our new neighbor. What's your name?
Setsuna: Setsuna F. Seiei.
Saji: Setsuna F. Seiei? That's a strange name.

      • All things considered, the only strange thing about the name is Setsuna having an 'F' as his middle name. Nobody knows what it means (but some fans believe it stands for Setsuna "Effing Overkill" Seiei, considering many of his kills being slightly excessive). It's also worth noting that his name is written with 3 different sets of characters, the only Gundam character ever to have that trait. Setsuna is written with the Kanji for the word. F. is written in Romaji, AKA Roman letters, and Seiei is written in Katakana.
    • Setsuna gives us, "In war, people die." This from a former Child Soldier now fighting a war to eradicate war.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam Wing
    • "Lieutenant Colonel Lady Une! Gundam still attacking on the ship!"
    • "Those are torpedoes, aren't they? I can tell!" As with Shirou, this line became a mild case of Never Live It Down for the speaker (Relena).
  • Suzumiya Haruhi:

[A giant cricket appears in front of them]
Kyon: What is this?
Koizumi: A camel cricket.
Kyon: Got it. Thanks, Captain Obvious...

  • From Slayers: Super-Explosive Demon Story:

Mook Disguised as Old Man: I have transformed these ordinary woodland creatures into astral-side demons! Cool, huh?
Gourry: This isn't a regular old guy, Lina!

    • Gourry is the Captain Obvious of Slayers. His role as such as repeatedly lampshaded and he constantly gets smacked by Lina for this (sometimes before he's even said anything).
      • Given that he thought the fact that Xellos is a mazoku/demon was obvious, it seems safe to say that Gourry's conception of what is and is not obvious is...not the same as everybody else's.
  • Naruto
    • So, there's a scene where Might Guy has brilliant lines such as "You surely are... someone I met before". Ironically, the latter is actually a subversion, as the villain is using a body duplication technique that's based on another body, and that one's rhythms are slightly different from the villain's own... so while Guy can see the bad guy, his instincts tell him that it's someone else. And he's right.
    • There's also when he looks at Gaara's gourd: "Nobody has noticed yet... but... that gourd is suspicious!"
    • There's also the Asuma vs Hidan fight. "Is he immortal?" "No shit, Sherlock!"
    • And there is also Pein's "do you hate me?" line after Naruto goes six tails due to witnessing Pein stab Hinata. Episode 167 made it worse (or hilarious depending on your view of the episode), as he says it after being smacked into the ground with a large chunk of mountain.
    • Masashi Kishimoto falls victim to this too as every time a plot point is shown he lampshades it.
  • Bleach:
    • During the Kenpachi vs. Nnoitora fight. "He's got more arms!" Thank you, Ichigo. We'd be lost without you.
    • Urahara temporarily surpasses Ichigo's stupidity in the Zanpakuto Rebellion arc, when the zanpakuto start rebelling against the shinigami. After several fight scenes, the new enemies completely devastating the Soul Society, Ichigo coming to his own (correct) conclusions, multiple Info Dumps, Urahara gives us this little gem: "From the report, it seems that the majority of zanpakuto in Soul Society have begun to act against their shinigami."
  • Fuu Hououji from Magic Knight Rayearth is (in?)famous for this sort of thing, to Hikaru and Umi's frustration.
  • In the Digimon Tamers dub when Takato and Henry are going on about how the Monster of the Week is destroying the city, Rika remarks "What are you two, the obvious brothers?"
  • Lampshaded in Code Geass. When Tamaki makes a remark like this, we get a little moment of contrast between C.C. and Kaguya in their responses to it:

Kaguya: Actually, that's an apt way of putting it.
C.C.: You're sure developing a useless ability there.

Kazumi: It's called a school festival. It's a festival organized by the school.

    • Blame the translator—The Japanese have a word for "festival", a word for "school", and a different-sounding word for "school festival" (Though written as "school" and "festival". That's how the language works). The person she's explaining it to is a foreigner who possibly wouldn't know all the words.
  • Some days, it seems like the only reason Luna is around anymore in Sailor Moon:

[monster creates sea pillars and attacks Sailor Moon with them]
Luna: Careful, Sailor Moon! That monster can attack with water!

    • Ami, to some extent. The dub rolls with this and makes her so redundant that it's a wonder they don't just tape her mouth shut until they need her to look up something specific.

Amy: " This is a portal inside a warped space......that leads to.....yet another space!!"

    • Sailor Moon Abridged makes this Amy's defining trait, after being a whispering The Voiceless. Mina is such a ditz, she moves into this territory as well.
  • Pokémon the First Movie should have a medal for the number of times the words "Mewtwo is a clone of Mew!", or something to that affect, are repeated.
    • Hell, the later dubbed seasons of the Pokémon anime are full of this. Characters frequently point out things that anybody watching the show can see.
    • Brock in the series is prone to this often (at least in the dub). It seems like every episode he has to explain everything that is going on, although this serves to educate viewers who aren't familiar with the Pokémon games.
    • There's also one in the Ash vs. Harrison battle.

Harrison: Hypno, use your Psychic attack!
Announcer: (Harrison's Hypno lifts Ash's Totodile into the air) Hypno is using its Psychic attack!

  • The Pokémon Mystery Dungeon anime specials are a fan of this. "The defense scarf. It's a scarf that raises your defense!"
  • Kazuma Kuwabara in Yu Yu Hakusho tends to say things like, "This is dangerous!" while a tunnel is collapsing on top of the Idiot Hero's True Companions.
  • Ikuko of Angel Densetsu manages to get some pretty hilarious moments with this. Bonus points for the Deadpan Snark.
  • Yui from K-On!: "Fun things are fun."
  • Ken Hidaka from Weiss Kreuz is the kind of guy who feels the need to point out to his teammates that empty rooms are, in fact, empty. Sometimes when they're standing right next to him. In the selfsame empty room.
  • An early episode of Fist of the North Star has a drill instructor explaining to his men that "God's Army is the army of God". The line makes sense in Japanese, since he's explaining what the name "God's Army" means (Kami no Gun), but its pointlessly redundant in English.
  • In Gankutsuou, a character looks at an envelope and reacts to it with: '13 Rue De Dauphine? That's M. Noisier's house!' (Name and address deliberately changed to protect the fact I can't remember them.) He then turns the envelope towards the camera, and there's a small, blurry address line; but the name 'M. Noisier' is perfectly legible in large letters across the centre of the envelope.
  • Though Kalinin from Full Metal Panic! tends not to say things like this, he did have an instance where he felt the need to mention that Gauron is a "depraved pleasure seeker." You know, just in case the audience and the soldiers who just fought him (and had just witnessed his Ax Crazy ways) didn't get it by now.
    • Kalinin was actually warning his subordinates to be wary of Gauron, saying that he might look "depraved and pleasure seeking" but he was still a pro—a very intelligent and cunning opponent. Also, the soldiers fighting him in that battle hadn't truly seen what he was capable of, and were probably inclined to dismiss him too easily, just like those guys in the Helmajistan arc. At that point, some anvils needed to be dropped. Though even Kalinin couldn't have predicted the whole new levels of insanity and lustful obsession Gauron had reached thanks to Sousuke. Not to mention, you know, the whole pancreatic cancer thing.
  • Loveless: Yuiko, dear GOD. Sometimes it seems that she has become an entity beyond Cloudcuckoolander and made this trope her main goal in life.

Yuiko: We are talking now.

Sakura: If you forcibly impale me with something, I will die.

    • Dokuro really does need reminding every now and then. Not that it will do any good.
  • Mirai Nikki: Yukki, have you honestly just figured that out NOW!?
  • Most lines of the narrator from Ookami San to Shichinin no Nakamatachi come down to "what is just happening on the screen", although the way she says them (taking such obvious pleasure in pointing out the salacious side of story events) is what makes having a narrator worthwhile.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion puts this trope even into a Mind Screw session in the last episode:

Asuka: Your mother is a different individual.
Shinji: Right, I am me and she is she. But are you really sure that the perceptions of others form my true self?
Misato: It's true, Shinji Ikari.
Asuka: Has it taken you this long to realize that?! What an idiot!

    • End of Evangelion has a much simpler example when a dying Misato is confronting a depressed Shinji: "You hate yourself, don't you?" Like, seriously, did you just realize that Misato?? Congratulations!
  • D Gray Man: "What is this?" "It's a sword. You've just been stabbed."
  • In the Japanese live-action version of Hana Yori Dango, Makino and Tsukasa are waiting to cross the street when the light turns from red to green. He remarks, "The light's green", as if no one else could see it.
  • Kore wa Zombie Desu ka? has Ayumu remark to Yuu: "If you hadn't brought me back to life, I'd still be dead." People do generally stay dead if you don't bring them back to life, yes.
  • In the 1980s Astro Boy, a cyborg called Inspector Holmes is shot in the only human part of him: his head. Astro's reaction? "You shot him! In the head! His head was the only part of that was human! You shot him in his head!"
  • Okusama wa Mahou Shoujo Late in the series, Ureshiko Asaba is judged to be erased, whereupon Kagura Tatsumi immediately clarifies, "That means you'll die!" Being wiped from existence is pretty much the same as dying, if not worse.
  • When Hayate finally realizes that Segawa Izumi has been possessed by a cat spirit, the Narrator comments "Captain Obvious strikes again." Hayate goes on to understand that this possession is why she's been meowing a lot -- he doesn't mention that she suddenly had cat ears and a cat tail. The Narrator wonders, "What ELSE did he think it was?"


Comics (this folder is about Comics)[edit | hide]

All examples found in comic books are here!

  • Several issues of The Mighty Thor back in the 60's had an advanced alien race send a "recorder" android along with him to an unknown galaxy to observe information. He said almost everything that was going on in the panel. Granted he was a recording android and everything, and he was probably making notes to himself, but still...

[Thor and the android get sent into a vortex of "biochemical molecules"].
Recorder: Observation: We have been plunged into a vortex of rapidly regrouping bio-versal molecules!

    • There's also this gem, when masses upon masses foes made of said molecules attack Thor and the Recorder:

Thor: Begone, things of evil! Not all thy masses shall topple mighty Thor!
Recorder: Observation: it shall take more than platitudes to stem this mighty tide!

Darrow: You always did have a fine grasp of the painfully obvious.

  • Young Justice dabbed into this at times when exposition was needed to point out something not clear in comic format. Of course, whenever Young Justice did something the author thought was stupid, it got mocked.

Robin: The kids... They've turned old! And those other kids are dancing out of control!
Superboy: Wow. I can tell you were trained by the world's greatest detective.

Sunspot: I need help here!
Dr Nemesis: Is that the game? We all bark out something stunningly obvious? In that case... ICE CREAM IS DELICIOUS!
Moonstar: You're not funny Dr Nemesis. Amara's hurt.
Dr Nemesis: Double points. My turn.

    • Also, somewhat unexpectedly, by the usually less testy Kurt Wagner in X-Men Legacy #231 after eight X-Men land on Muir Island:

Magneto: We shouldn't go into the island's interior until we're sure this site is secure.
Nightcrawler: Thank you, Magneto. It's good to have you on my team. From now on you can be in charge of stating the obvious.

  • In the Dark Tower prequel comic The Fall Of Gilead, The Dragon General Grissom has a Captain Obvious moment when he tells the Big Bad that their troops are falling into traps in full view. The villain then lampshades it.
  • Spoofed in an issue of Peter David's comic book Soulsearchers & Company, where the opening caption reads: What if Soulsearchers And Company talked like 1960's Hanna-Barbera heroes?

Janocz: Kelly! A giant tentacle is going to grab me!
Kelly: Oh no! Janocz is being grabbed by a giant tentacle!
Giant tentacle: Ha ha! I, a giant tentacle, have grabbed Janocz!

  • In Hawkeye Vol. 1 #4, a villain helpfully tells Hawkeye, "I am a villain."
  • Wallace from Scott Pilgrim often chimes in this helpful advice when the Big Bad, Gideon, attacks the Title Character:

Look out, Scott, I think this guy might be Gideon.

Tails: Wow! The Death Egg!
Sonic: Tails, what is it with you and stating the blatantly obvious?

      • And later on in the same strip:

Tails: Sonic! You're alive!
Sonic: And you're still stating the obvious, I see.

    • And in issue #115:

Tails: They... they're joining together!
Sonic: Tails, you always were an expert at stating the flipping obvious!

    • In one of the Summer Specials:

Tails: Sonic! He's attacking us!
Sonic: Thanks Tails, I had noticed.

  • In Star Wars: Empire's End, Palpatine has an announcement to make after Han Solo has shot him: "The Corellian has killed me."
    • Dark Empire also contains a non-example: When Palpatine is about to pass his spirit into a fresh clone body, Luke walks in, revealing his status as a Fake Defector and his intent to destroy all the clones in the room, preventing Palpatine's perpetuation. Palpatine's response ("Very well... then I must die.") is not a case of stating the obvious, but rather a challenge for Luke to Bring It. He brings it, but it's not enough.


Fan Works (this folder is about Fan Works)[edit | hide]

All examples found in fan fiction and other amateur tributes are here!

  • In the Psych fic Hero, there is the following exchange when a man who's taken a high school class hostage reveals he's got a bomb strapped to his chest:

Billy: Hey, that's a bomb!
Shawn: Thank you, Captain Obvious.

So I've got the trinkets. Brunhilda is still snoring away. Cujo, the killer schnauzer, is still locked in the bathroom. I close the safe, restore the power, slide the window back exactly the way it was—8 minutes flat. Personal best for a private residence where I didn't have the floorplan going in. I drop down to the alley—and there… he… is…The Batman. Caped Crusader. Dark Knight. Guardian of Gotham. Crime Fighter extraordinaire. I am Vengeance, I am Justice, I am in desperate need of a personality transplant… Batman.
In full regalia—looking like Sir Lancelot dipped in tar but not yet feathered.
And he speaks: "I don't think those jewels belong to you."
...I salute you, World's Greatest Detective!


Film (this folder is about Films)[edit | hide]

All examples found in cinematic releases are here!

  • In Anti Trust Milo righteously exclaims "In the real world, when you kill people, they die--for real!" He's saying it to bring home how far removed the Big Bad really is from reality and how little he respects human life, but it's pretty silly out of context.
  • Sarah in Team America: World Police: "I sense that I'm going down!", after being shot down by the enemy..
  • Pepper in Dodgeball

Pepper: (Peter puts on a blindfold) Yeah, he will not be able to see with that.

Asterix: What's that?
Getafix: It's the end of his beard!
Obelix: Then he must be at the other end!
Asterix: You figured that out by yourself?

  • In Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, when Ethan Hunt is rappelling down the side of the Burj Khalifa with a fire hose, the hose turns out to be slightly shorter than needed. One of the characters yells at Ethan "Your line's not long enough!" to which Ethan replies very sarcastically "NO SHIT!"
  • Ric Olié from Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, notorious for lines like "Enemy fighters straight ahead!" or "Coruscant... The entire planet is one big city."
    • It doesn't start with him, either. The very first scene with Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan has battle droids arrive and turn on their force fields. A second later, Obi-Wan says, "They have shield generators!" This is perhaps three to five minutes after the opening text crawl ends.
    • The Star Wars parody That Prequel Movie gives Ric Olié lines of this type, but sprinkled with extra ridiculous.

Olié: Invading droids can mean only one thing. An invasion... of droids.

R2-D2: <bip bing poppity>
Anakin: What was that?
Ric Olié: It sounds like he's beeping in droid language!

    • C-3PO demonstrates his usefulness:

[ground shakes violently]
C-3PO: Sir, it's quite possible this asteroid is not entirely stable.
Han: "Not entirely stable"? Well, I'm glad you're here to tell us these things! Chewie, take the Professor into the back and plug him into the hyperdrive.

    • It's a trap!
      • Ackbar also does this in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars episode "Water Wars". When the Quarren attack, he shouts out "It's an attack!". At that point in time he actually is a captain to boot.
  • Maybe unintentionally in Tron Legacy where Sam is asked to dscribe the sun, for which he answers, "Big....yellow....bright....warm..." (which is new information for a being who never seen it)
  • Legolas in The Lord of The Rings always yells what happens. The most commonly used being that if an orc attacks, he yells "Orcs!".
  • Parodied in Austin Powers with Basil Exposition, who as well as the more useful kind of filling-in, on occasion displayed a tendency to state the blindingly obvious as well ("Thanks, Basil."). In particular, a deleted scene from the first movie has him helpfully pop up at the end to inform Austin and Vanessa that they've survived the destruction of Dr. Evil's secret base and have found themselves in a raft for some reason.
  • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade has two.
    • While Indiana Jones and his father are being pursued by angry Nazis:

Henry Jones Sr: These people are trying to kill us!
Henry Jones Jr: I know, Dad!!!

    • At the end of the movie, a collection of grails are found along with an immortal knight who explains that only one is the Holy Grail and that "for as the true Grail will bring you life, the false grail will take it from you". After drinking from one of the grails, Donovan rapidly ages, becoming a skeleton in the span of about thirty seconds. Just in case Indy and Elsa didn't get the idea, the knight says "he chose... poorly", demonstrating that Tropes Are Not Bad.
  • Indy himself gets to be one at the end of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: "Their treasure was knowledge. Knowledge was their treasure."
  • Parodied or perhaps justified in the movie Dumb and Dumber when Harry asks a lady who has also stopped at the gas station, "Skis huh? They yours? ...Both of them?"
  • Referred to by name in Dude, Where's My Car?:

Mr. Pizzacoli: They said "the Photon Accelerator Annihilation Beam," you fool!
Chester: Hurry, activate it, dude!
[a small panel on the Transfunctioner reads "Photon Accelerator Annihilation Beam"]
Chester: I think that's it, dude.
Jesse: Thank you, Captain Obvious!

  • The cop in the passenger seat of the paddy wagon in The Dark Knight has this role. Obviously justified, since the audience would have noticed if Gordon started talking.
  • The movie versions of X-Men are rather fond of these.

Storm: Do you know what happens to a toad when it's hit by lightning? The same thing that happens to everything else.

    • More annoying is the fact that they missed the perfect joke, as mentioned on the dvd-commentary.

Storm: Do you know what happens to a toad when it's hit by lightning? It croaks.

Sagat: Guile's... alive?
M. Bison: OF COURSE!!!

Harry: "It's flying away? Is that a bad thing?"
Ira: "Only if you're a human being."

  • The Matrix had one of these, where Neo enters the Keymaker's coop, and introduces himself. The other, while crafting a key at that specific moment and while literally being drowned in an ocean of finished keys, simply responds with "I am the Keymaker."
    • Mad Magazine ran the scene three times in their parody, just so they could give him better responses

"Are you the Keymaster?" "No, I perform circumcisions" "But why do you have keys hanging around you?" "What else would I hang on these hooks?"
"Are you the Keymaster?" "No, I'm the head Valet and I've been swamped lately"

    • "Now there's more than one of him?" "A lot more" "How is that possible?" "Somehow he's found a way to copy himself."
    • "Is that good for us or bad for us?" "Well, it looks like every floor is wired with explosives." "Bad for us."
  • In Help!!, Ringo is trapped in a basement. A tiger comes in, and its presence is noticed by a caption reading "A Tiger".
  • Lampooned in Disney's Aladdin:

Frightened guard: "He's got a sword!"
Razoul "You idiots! We've all got swords!"

    • Of course, it's kind of justified in this case, since the guards up to this point had been chasing two characters who were unarmed, and now the one who is armed is a monkey.
  • In the film adaptation of Red Sonja, the titular character is weeping over her sister, who's just died. Arnold leans down, touches her lightly on the shoulder and says "She's dead". I suppose it's meant to buck her up, but dear God, show some sensitivity man.
  • From Ghostbusters:

Ray: "Hey, where do these stairs go?"
Peter: "They go up."

    • Peter is the only one who has been there before, so naturally his colleagues turn to him for advice. He is also the one who never admits ignorance.

Dana: What's that thing?
Peter: It's... technical.

  • One of many lampshadings in Galaxy Quest where Gwen complains that her only role in the show, apart from being Fan Service, was to repeat what the computer had just said out loud.
  • Lampshaded in The Naked Gun, as the heroine is being held hostage by a bad guy who is pointing his gun at Frank.

Jane: He's got a gun.
Frank: I know.

Frank: Cigarette?
Jane: Yes, it is.

  • Sheriff Obvious in the 2010 remake of The Crazies, after learning that an unidentified plane has crashed in their drinking water, townsfolk have started acting insane and murderous, and that they have no phone connections or internet access, has this brilliant gem to say:

David: We're in trouble.

  • Much of the dialogue in the Miramax version of The Thief and the Cobbler is this, mainly because it was half-heartedly thrown in for the sole purpose of Lull Destruction. For example, we know Tack's in love with the princess because he makes her face out of thread in a very effective scene. Yet somebody decided he also needed to sing a horrible Award Bait Song song about it!
  • From Vin Diesel film The Pacifier: "You know why you quit, Seth? Because you're a quitter. And everyone knows that quitters quit."
  • Charlie in Mystery Team at times.

And THIS is the LUMBERYARD.... Right?

  • After the thieves in Reservoir Dogs get away from a robbery that turns into a police shootout, they're having trouble locating one of their own. Mr. Blonde has a succinct analysis of the situation:

Mr. Blonde: Either he's alive or he's dead, or the cops got him, or they don't.

Donny: Phone's ringin', Dude.
The Dude: Thank you, Donny.

Brian: This is somebody else's house!
Maurice: No duh--where'd ya park the squad car, Dick Tracy?

Curdie: A goblin village... A goblin village. This must be where the goblins live!

  • "We were forced under the water of the ocean."
    • Attempting to list all the examples from the film would keep us here all night, but mention has to go to Aang using his Captain Obvious powers to save an entire village by reminding the Earth Benders they are in fact capable of Earth Bending.
  • The Mask: Seems to be a defining point of Detective Doyle's character, to the frustration of Lt. Kellaway.

A group of police fire without success at The Mask.
Detective Doyle: I missed.
Lt. Kelleway: Aw, we all missed!

Inspector Clay is dead... murdered. And somebody is responsible!
Visits? Well, that would indicate visitors!
Future events such as these will affect you in the future.

  • The Giant Spider Invasion features a brief exchange between a woman and her cheating husband, who pretends to go into town to listen to a preacher. Their conversation mirrors one had by Calvin Coolidge (see in the Real Life Folder, below).
  • In Star Trek II the Wrath of Khan, when the Enterprise is trying to contact Regula One, Spock has this insightful comment, "There are two possibilities. They are unable to respond. They are unwilling to respond."
  • In Star Trek: Nemesis, Data had his Captain Obvious moments too, as even the dead-serious TNG crew couldn't help but notice sometimes...

Data: [picking up a robotic arm] It appears to be a robotic arm.
Worf: Very astute.

  • In most of his incarnations, Spock plays the Captain Obvious role. This is lampshaded in the latest Star Trek film.

Spock: [on intercom] Dr Puri, report.
McCoy: It's McCoy. Dr. Puri was on Deck 6. He's dead.
Spock: Then you have just inherited his responsibility as Chief Medical Officer.
[McCoy looks at a burning medical room full of casualties from the attack]
McCoy: Yeah, tell me something I don't know!

  • Vicki Vale in Batman. "Bats", she points out, upon seeing the animals in the Batcave, "His parents were murdered in that alley. That's why he went there" while checking Bruce Wayne's newspaper files motivated by having seen him going to the alley, and then when she sees Joker's Smylex gas flowing out of a balloon, she comments "Smylex gas". In the first and third example, the referred items are in plain sight not only to her but to the audience as well.


Literature (this folder is about Literature)[edit | hide]

All examples found in books not of the comic or manga persuasion are here!

  • In Billy & Howard, the twins have vastly different ideas of what is and isn't obvious, occasionally leading to this trope being named.
  • Car magazine AutoWeek frequently features quotes stating the painfully obvious accompanied by a picture of a Captain America (comics) lookalike in their "But Wait, There's More..." section.
  • In The Dilbert Principle, Scott Adams lists Master of the Obvious as one of the roles to take in a meeting. The Master of the Obvious gets lines such as "You need customers in order to have revenue!" and "We want a win-win solution."
  • In CS Lewis' The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, the entire race of Dufflepuds are prone to this, with such astute observations as water is powerfully wet.
  • In the Hans Christian Andersen story The Emperor's New Clothes, the kid who points out that the emperor is nekkid plays this role. In fact, he's the smartest person in the crowd because of his ability to state the obvious.
    • It is more that the innocent child has no reason to pretend that the emperor is wearing clothes.
  • The Harry Potter books have a few (most are lampshaded in-universe however), one being Harry saying "Ghosts are transparent."

Cedric: The cup is a portkey.

    • The Chinese translation says that Slughorn is saying Ron's name wrong when we can all tell that from the dialogue.
    • "You can't break Unbreakable Vows."
    • "Hermione, Neville's right...you are a girl..."
  • In the second Midnighters book, Madeleine accuses Dess of being one.

Dess: You're a mindcaster.
Madeleine: And you have a fine grasp of the obvious.
and
Dess: You've been mindcasting this to me while I was asleep.
Madeleine: I expect that you must earn top marks at school, young lady. There are always rewards for those who state the obvious frequently and with conviction.

Aro started to laugh. "Ha, ha, ha," he chuckled.

  • Mulenz, a supporting character in the Ciaphas Cain short story The Beguiling, was like this, to Cain's mild annoyance. "No wonder they made him an observer, I thought, nothing gets past this guy."
  • In The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, this is humanity's hat.

One of the things that Ford Prefect had always found hardest to understand about human beings was their habit of continually stating and restating the very, very obvious. As in: "It's a nice day," or "You're very tall," or "So this is it. We're going to die."

Zaphod:[speaking into a phone] Will you please tell us where you are?
Marvin: I'm in the car park.
Zaphod: The car park? What are you doing there?
Marvin: Parking cars, what else does one do in a car park?
Zaphod: Okay, hang in there, we'll be right down. [Puts down the phone and turns to everyone else] Come on, guys. Marvin's in the car park. Let's get on down.
Arthur: What's he doing in a car park?
Zaphod: Parking cars, what else? Dumdum...

Enemy Commander: "There seems to be a slight problem, my prince."
Prince Xizor: "So I noticed. Why are your ships blowing up, Commander?"

  • John Flanagan's Ranger's Apprentice: the Ruins of Gorlan, first in a series. There's a Big Bad monster out there, which is nigh-unstoppable (partly because its eyes could hypnotise). However, it's been established that not only was its mate killed, but that the same natural oil that worked as armour on the beast also made it highly flammable. When the main character, who is being trained in archery by the world's best archer until he can arch with the best, sees his master and other main characters facing the creature, he finally comes up with the ingenious idea to fire a flaming arrow at it. He's hailed as a genius hero, instead of people wondering why nobody had done that right from the beginning.
    • In fairness, when you're a young kid, and you've got a monstrous wall of fur about to tear apart two heavily-armed warriors (who, themselves, have less excuse for not figuring this out), you're probably not thinking of an unorthodox plan like that. (And yes, it is unorthodox.)
  • In A Fistful of Charms, after Rachel meets Rex:

"It's a cat," I said, winning the Pulitzer Prize for incredible intellect.
(and then, after Jax says he wants to keep her):
It's a cat. Boy, you couldn't slip anything past me tonight.

  • Some of Count Olaf's comments in A Series of Unfortunate Events. One notable example in The Penultimate Peril is when Klaus mentions the 'unfathomable question' in Page 581, and Count Olaf points out that that is the five-hundred and eighty-first page.
  • THE Detective, Sherlock Holmes, would consider himself an example of this trope (no shit, indeed), while being the ultimate literary inversion in character and method. In the books he constantly make incredibly obvious observations, admitting that they were "elementary" and "simplicity itself", though of course they were only obvious to Holmes due to his broadness and depth of study - it was still necessary to explain it all to his allies.
  • A book called 100 Things You Aren't Supposed To Know is, well, a list of information that is apparently suppressed from the public knowledge. #37 was "Work kills more people than war," which, if you consider basic mathematics, is like saying "time kills more people than sharks" since there is always, always, always work going on somewhere in the world and war isn't usually happening and nowadays, won't claim explosive numbers of casualties.
  • Neverwhere : Richard Mayhew. "Oh, you're awake", he tells to Door who is awake.
  • The great William Shakespeare brings us this line uttered by Macduff's son in Macbeth: "He has killed me, mother!" This is right after he was murdered by a character called "First Murderer."
    • But if you're just watching the play you don't know that the character's name is First Murderer.
    • And because of the nature of stagecraft in those days, it was often necessary to make such statements to let the audience know what was going on or what they were supposed to be aware of or understand.
  • In the Artemis Fowl series, demons have lived in a different dimension from ours for thousands of years, only learning of human customs and culture through one trashy romance novel, which they take as a sort of Bible. No1, a young demon/warlock we first meet in The Last Colony, was particularly interested in the human world, so when he finally gets transported there, he takes great pleasure in pointing out the meaning of human expressions, despite the fact that every other character around him (and the readers) know very well what they mean.
    • Subverted in book six: "I think we all know what D'Arvit means."
    • Artemis also has his moments: "My butler could kill you a hundred ways without the use of his weapons. Although I'm sure one would be quite sufficient."
  • Tom Ward, the protagonist of The Last Apprentice series is also prone to this, but in the 8th book we see that even Satan himself does this:

"She is trapped in the dark for eternal torment. Eternal! That means it will go on forever!"

  • Partially subverted in The Butterfly Kid, where Chester points to Michael Kurland as an example of Whitehead's statement that "It requires an unusual mind to undertake the analysis of the obvious." So he keeps pointing to the obvious everyone has overlooked.
  • The Ambassador in The Great Explosion also has this unusual turn of mind. When an officer turns in an estimate of planetary population based on the number of strongholds they see from space, he replies that this says nothing at all about what they CAN'T see. How do you know there aren't some underground? "We haven't seen any." "He says we haven't seen any!"
  • In If It Had Happened Otherwise, J.C. Squires, "If It Had Been Discovered in 1930 That Bacon Really Did Write Shakespeare": Mr. G. K. Chesterton... as usual, seeing the obvious long before anyone else..."
  • Colette disses Ethan for being this trope in Icerigger, for such brilliant demonstrations as remarking "Stuck" after trying and failing to open a jammed door.
  • Justified with Jeeves in Jeeves and Wooster: sometimes he has to be Captain Obvious just to get things through Bertie's head. From the short story "The Ordeal of Young Tuppy" (after Bertie receives a telegram from Tuppy):

Bertie: I will read it to you. Handed in at Upper Bleaching. Message runs as follows: 'When you come tomorrow, bring my football boots. Also, if humanly possible, Irish water-spaniel. Urgent. Regards. Tuppy.' What do you make of that, Jeeves?
Jeeves: As I interpret the document, sir, Mr. Glossop wishes you, when you come tomorrow, to bring his football boots. Also, if humanly possible, an Irish water-spaniel. He hints that the matter is urgent, and sends his regards.
Bertie: Yes, that's how I read it, too. But why football boots?
Jeeves: Perhaps Mr. Glossop wishes to play football, sir.
Bertie: Yes. That may be the solution.

    • And later in the same conversation:

Bertie: What is an Irish water-spaniel?
Jeeves: A water-spaniel of a variety bred in Ireland, sir.
Bertie: You think so?
Jeeves: Yes, sir.
Bertie: Well, perhaps you're right.


Live Action TV (this folder is about Live Action Television)[edit | hide]

All examples found in shows, that aren't animated, displayed on the television are here!

  • Counselor Troi on Star Trek: The Next Generation does this a lot. An alien will appear on the viewscreen and rant, rave, posture and threaten the Enterprise. Troi will lean over to the Captain and murmur, "I sense hostility..."
    • Troi was following in the footsteps of Leonard McCoy of Star Trek: The Original Series, who spat contemptuously at the medicine of previous eras, and yet, despite the miraculous 23rd-century technology that he possessed, seldom gave a diagnosis more detailed than "He's dead, Jim!"
    • Also, in multiple Trek series, an enemy ship will go to warp, while the Enterprise (Voyager, Defiant, etc.) is damaged, busy, or just not fast enough to keep up. After watching this happen, someone will always say "they're gone," even if they've also just reported the enemy ship's departure. Once every third episode, you were liable to see a situation like this:

[Zip! Phoom! Villains disappear as everyone watches on insanely big viewscreen.]
Paris: "They went to Ultrawarp Factor Eleventy-Zillion, Captain. [Pause] They're gone."

    • Shows up in the Stargate Verse lately as well: Someone will always say "they're gone" after another ship departs via hyperspace window.
    • Babylon 5 spoofed Troi's solemn pronouncements with a similar moment where supercharged telepath Lyta Alexander simply commented, "Captain, they're pissed."
    • Spoofed after a fashion in Galaxy Quest (is there anything that movie missed?) with Sigourney Weaver repeating everything the computer tells them, making her every bit as useful as Troi. It's even Lampshaded ("Look, I got one job on this lousy ship -- it's stupid, but I'm gonna do it anyway!!!!"). Then again, the computer would not respond to anyone else, so she still had her uses.
    • In the original series episode "The Changeling", a space probe called Nomad, convinced that its mission is to destroy all "biological units", mistakes Kirk for its creator. This buys the crew some time until Kirk lets slip that he is a biological unit. Nomad declares it needs to "re-evaluate" and floats off. Spock's response?

Spock: Captain, it may have been unwise to admit to Nomad that you are a biological unit.

Kirk: By Vulcan biology, do you mean the biology of Vulcans?

Kirk: Insufficient data is not sufficient, Mr. Spock.

    • In Star Trek: Voyager, a female Q pegs this trope as a trait of the entire Vulcan species.

Female Q: The Vulcan talent for stating the obvious never ceases to amaze me.

    • Captain Kathryn "Obvious" Janeway of Star Trek: Voyager demonstrated an incredible grasp of temporal physics when Harry Kim was teleported to a whereabouts the crew was unable to ascertain.

Janeway: How long until we have to leave?
Bridge: I'd say we're safe for another two hours.
Janeway: That gives us two hours to find Mr. Kim.

One hour, fifty-nine minutes and fifty-eight seconds now that you've finished stating the obvious.

  • Kai, who filled the Spock/Data role in the cast of Lexx, had Captain Obvious duties.

Zev: "Who is 'Poet Man?'"
Kai: "A poet, perhaps."

  • iCarly: Freddie usually, often followed by Sam or Carly glaring at him.
  • From the Victorious episode Survival Of The Hottest (aka Stuck In an RV):

Jade: "We... we gotta get out of here."
Tori: "Yeah... Thank you! Catherine Obvious!"
Jade: "The expression is 'thank you, Captain Obvious'."
Tori: "It's not 'Catherine'?"
Trina: "No..."
Beck: "Who would Catherine be?"
Tori: (upset) "Catherine could be a captain!"

  • Samantha Carter, in her position as Stargate SG-1's designated Ms. Exposition had more than a few moments of this. Which was somewhat amusing during the first two seasons, where she actually held the rank of Captain.
    • Zelenka on Stargate Atlantis is often dismissed as a Captain Obvious by McKay after coming up with some incredibly complex science idea which McKay already came up with. McKay, though, also has his share of these, to the point that in one episode, somebody called him Captain Obvious.
    • In Children of the Gods, the pilot episode of SG-1, a doctor is performing an autopsy on a Jaffa, and pulls out the Goa'uld symbiote.

Doctor: It's not human!
Jack: You think?

      • O'Neill used his snarky, "You think?" quite often in the series to lampshade Captain Obvious moments. It became one of his Catch Phrases.
    • In the season seven episode Birthright, Part 1, Bra'tac and Teal'c walk through a battlefield filled with dead Jaffa. Teal'c notes that there were two Goa'uld there with their respective armies. Bra'tac replies "This meeting did not go well." Really? Because when I see dead guys, I assume things were going great!
  • Parodied in Fawlty Towers:

Basil: Could we get you on Mastermid, Sybill? Next contestant Sybill Fawlty from Torquay, special subject; the bleedin' obvious!

Jack: Now that he's dead, there's no way he could be alive.

  • "So, you're here to kill me," says Arthur Petrelli in Heroes, after his son's been pointing a gun at his face for a minute or so.
    • "Gabriel, you're here."
  • Carter alternates between this and Cloudcuckoolander in Hogan's Heroes.
  • Plenty of comedic mileage on Red Dwarf:

Holly: A stasis leak is a leak, right, in stasis. Hence the name 'a stasis leak'.

Rimmer: (trying to save his past self) I've come to warn you, in three million years you'll be dead!
Past Rimmer: Will I really?

Cat: (examining an arrow) Yep, this came from a bow all right.

  • Sabrina the Teenage Witch invoked this trope with Salem Saberhagen. In one episode he announced, in a completely blasé tone of voice, that the phone was ringing. Later in the same episode, when a small tornado was tearing through the house, he said, "Tornado in the house" in the same tone.
  • Many of the headlines featured on The Tonight Show, such as this gem: "Starvation leads to health hazards". (Leno's reply: "Really? I find I'm feeling hungry all the time.")
  • Once on Air Farce Live: seen here

Lisa LaFlamme: Dr Blide, are you sick?
Dr. Blide: Am I sick? Oh! Stop the press! The Nobel Prize for Medicine goes to Lady Obvious!

"[...] six to eight hours ago, somebody lost his head. And then... somebody lost his head."

    • In one episode, they find a mutilated corpse. After someone else says "someone wanted her ugly", Grissom one-ups with "Ugly and dead".
  • In the X-Files episode "The Erlenmeyer Flask," a microbiology expert explains the rudiments of genetics—material taught in any high school's freshman biology class—to Agent Scully, a fully qualified doctor. While some viewers of the show might have needed the refresher course, Scully absolutely should not have, and turning her into The Rick for this kind of material just does her a disservice. The episode "Humbug" has something similar, with Mulder telling Scully what ichthyosis is.
  • Subverted and lampshaded often, severely, and, on occasion, simultaneously on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the best example likely being when Spike is nearly tearing his hair out by the unbleached roots telling the Scoobies over and over that the Hell Goddess Glory just turned into Joyce's caregiver Ben. They miss the point every time.
    • Darn that memory spell... What makes the situation funnier is that the other Scoobies (save for the comatose Buffy) actually get it near the end of the first go-around with a little help from Spike:

Willow: So... Ben and Glory... a-are actually the same person?
Xander: Glory can turn into Ben, and Ben turns back into Glory.
Anya: And anyone who sees it instantly forgets.
[About a half a minute later]
Giles: Excellent. Now. Do we suspect there may be some kind of connection between Ben and Glory?

    • It kind of makes you wonder how many times he tried to get them to figure it out if he considered bitch-slapping Xander upside the head worth the pain.
      • He's pretty close to thinking that most of the time anyway.
    • Every so often, Oz dips into this, as part of his Deadpan Snarker routine.

Oz: Our lives are different than other people's.

    • When Xander is split in two: "If Xander kills himself, he'll die!". It Makes Sense in Context.
    • Anya: "You know what else is un-American? French people."
    • Faith shoots a guy through the heart with a bow and arrow:

Vampire minion: You killed him!
Faith: What are you, the narrator?

  • A major part of Demetri Martin's stand-up routine ("Large Pad"), and by extension, Important Things.
    • Likewise, a recurring gag in Bill Engvall's stand-up. "Here's your sign."
  • Subverted in the 1992 Australian mini-series Phoenix, a fictionalised account of the car-bombing of a Melbourne police station. Some hours into the investigation, Inspector Jock Brennan asks forensic scientist Ian "The Goose" Cochrane what he's come up with.

The Goose: There was a bomb in that car, and it went off.
Jock: Are you having me on?
The Goose: Look, it could have been a mortar shell. The bomb could have been under a manhole cover and the car had nothing to do with it. There are solutions besides the obvious, you know.

    • Jock is so furious he tries to get his superiors to throw The Goose off the case, only to be told that he's the Number One expert in post-bomb analysis in the Southern Hemisphere, so he'd better shut up and listen to him.
  • MythBusters often has someone reiterating what they've been doing, just in case you missed it. It alternates between individuals.
    • Probably because there is a sizable segment of viewers who watch just for the kaboom. They need to be reminded how it works.
  • Inadvertently inverted by one-time BBC snooker commentary: "For those of you watching in black and white, the blue's the one behind the pink."
    • Actually, this was not inadvertent. It is commonly cited as a mistake, but is actually helpful when the blue ball has been knocked off its starting position, but the pink has not. And it was repeated whenever that case presented, further dispelling the myth that it was an error.
  • Dr. Huang from Law and Order Special Victims Unit is frequently found guilty of committing this trope.
  • Firefly: "It's a post holer. You dig holes for . . . posts." Well, yes, Kaylee.
    • You could say it's justified, considering the good doctor's background (or lack thereof).
  • House has this exchange:

Tritter: You're rude.
House: Wow. You're, like, a detective or something.

    • House also gave us this gem:

Chase: He has a partial HPRT enzyme deficiency. That means he could have Kelley-Seegmiller Syndrome.
Cameron: But it's a partial deficiency. So it doesn't have to be Kelley-Seegmiller.
House: Yeah, those are the two options. It either is or it isn't.

    • House loves this trope...

Cameron: That's it. It's gotta be one of those [five diseases].
House: You know what would be even better? Narrowing it all the way down to one.

    • He sure does...

Student: You're reading a comic book.
House: And you're drawing attention to your bosom by wearing a low-cut top. Oh, I'm sorry. I thought we were having a state-the-obvious contest. I'm competitive by nature.

    • Another one, though not from House this time:

Nurse: (after House spits on a surgeon to prevent him performing a needless operation) We can't do this operation now!
Surgeon: Ya think?!

Cavil: Time for us to go on the offensive.
Simon: We must be cautious. Too much force could risk killing the child.
Cavil: Really? You think? Please continue stating the perfectly obvious; it fills me with confidence.

  • "If somebody mentions my name, then my name will be mentioned." "Well, that's obvious."
  • On Family Matters, Harriet gets a call that will tell whether or not she got a job. As the family huddles around the phone, the grandmother walks in and asks what happened. Carl responds, "She either got the job or she didn't." Grandma replies, "Those would be the choices."
  • In one episode of Lie to Me, the team comes across a dead body in the trunk of a car. Foster asks what happened to the victim, to which Lightman replies, "He died."
  • Nathan's "The probation worker's gone mental!" line from Misfits, when he'd already been warned about said probation worker's mentality and refused to believe it. In his defence, you probably wouldn't believe that your supervisor had suddenly turned into a murderous axe-wielding maniac until you saw it with your own eyes. Especially if you're The Ditz.
  • The Hannah Montana episode where Miley needs some money we see Rico's stand with a tent up.

Lily: What's going on at Rico's?
Oliver: Oh there's a tent up.

Dream Lord: Ask me what happens if you die in reality.
Rory: What happens if you die in reality?
Dream Lord: [Withering] You die, stupid, that's why it's called 'reality'!

(Daleks fire missiles at the TARDIS, after Rose says she can't predict what the Doctor's going to do)
Rose: No! That TARDIS doesn't have any shields! You're gonna kill him!
Dalek: You have predicted correctly.

(John Benton enters the TARDIS for the first time)
Doctor: Well, Sergeant? Aren't you going to say that it's Bigger on the Inside than it is on the outside? Everybody else does.
John: It's pretty obvious, isn't it?

    • In "The Rebel Flesh", the Doctor deduces that something corrosive is flowing through a pipe that is clearly marked "DANGER: CORROSIVE".
    • K-9 has his moments as well.

Mickey Smith: Okay, no time to explain, we need to get inside the school. Do you have, like, I don't know, a lock picking device?
K9: We are in a car.
Mickey Smith: Maybe a drill attachment?
K9: We are in a car.
Mickey Smith: Fat lot of good you are
K9: We are in a car.
Mickey Smith: Wait a second. We're in a car.
K9: Affirmative.

    • In "Night Terrors", the resident Muggle has a real insight to add to the conversation.

The Doctor: I'm not just a professsional, I am The Doctor.
Alex: What is that supposed to mean?
The Doctor: It means that I have traveled a long way to get here, Alex. A very long way. George sent a message. A distress call, if you like. Whatever that is inside that cup-board is so terrible, so powerful that it amplifies the ordinary fears of a ordinary little boy across all the barriers across time and space. Through crimson stars and silent stars and tumbeling nebulosas on fire, Empires of glass and civilizations of pure though. And a whole terrible, wonderful universe of impossibilities. You see these eyes? They are old eyes. And one thing I can tell you, Alex? Monsters are real.
Alex: ... you are not from Social Services, are you?

"WHOA, THAT DUDE'S HUGE!"
"IT'S GREEN RANGER!"
"OH MAN, HE FROZE THE ZORDS. WE'RE HISTORY!"

  • Sharpe gives us this gem

(after being run through with a sword) "You have killed me sir.."

  • The editors of Big Brother tend to be this for the audience. In just about every episode, they will show recaps of previous episodes right before the titles. Then, after the titles, they will show the scene again, accompanied by a Diary Room excerpt of one of the Houseguests explaining what we just saw and are seeing again.
    • A Houseguest in danger of being voted out will try to convince the others to keep them by saying "I don't want to go home."
  • In a Grey's Anatomy episode where Christina is "helping out" in Ped's. She is told to play Hide and Seek with a patient and look in strange places while all the while the kid is hiding underneath the blankets.

Arizona:"She might be hiding in your pocket!"
Christina:"No she's right here."
(pulls up bedsheet covers)

    • A particularly dark one when Dr. Percy is shot. Want to guess what he said after that to the people that witnessed it?

Percy: *clutching his gunshot wound* "He shot me- He shot me! I've been shot!"

  • The Nickelodeon show "All That" had a sketch called "Vital Information for your Everyday Life" that was built around this trope, amongst other things. Some kernels of Vital Information include:
    • "When it rains it pours. When it's snows it's cold!"
    • "If your dog sniffs you, it wants to get to know you. If your friend sniffs you, you've got a weird friend."
    • "If you accidentally flush your friend down the toilet... you either have a huge toilet or a really tiny friend!"
  • In the Corner Gas episode "Full Load," Davis pulls Hank over for having a broken taillight. He says he'll follow as Hank drives his truck to the police station to be impounded. Hank agrees, but says, "Hey. Don't rear-end me. My taillight's broke."
  • The narrator of Monsters Inside Me, a documentary series about parasites, has an annoying tendency to ask things like "But might this apparent spider bite be something more sinister...?". To which the answer is self-evident to anyone who knows what show they're watching.
  • In the Law and Order episode "Mammon," Ed Green looks at the body of a man who has been brutally beaten to death and says, "Somebody didn't like this dude."
  • In a video from America's Funniest Home Videos, a kid discovers he was born on his birthday and tells his mom.
  • BRIAN BLESSED: This is a shocking news, that immigrants are now immigrating.
  • Kamen Rider Kabuto: They seem to be worried that we're going to forget what Clock Up does, because every couple of episodes a voice-over jumps in to tell us (paraphrasing): "You see how everything else is moving in slow motion? That's because they're moving really, really fast."
  • The Torchwood episode "Dead Man Walking" gave us this scriptwriting gem: "What happened to the town when death walked among them?" "People died."
  • Home Improvement has Tim doing an Enforced Plug on his Show Within a Show: "If it doesn't say Binford on it... someone else makes it."
  • On Parks and Recreation, Chris says that his "secret" to setting people up on dates is finding one person's best qualities, then finding someone else with those same qualities, and putting them together. Also in that same episode, when Ron has to make a speech at the art gallery:

Ron: Welcome to "Visions of Nature". This room has several paintings in it, some are big, some are small. People did them and they are here now, I believe that after this is over they'll be hung in government buildings.

    • This is true to all of Ron's speeches. As he had stated, he hates making speeches.
    • An even better example is Perd Hapley, who simply embodies this trope.
  • Played with on Frasier. A couple of times someone points out a psychological observation to another psychiatrist and said psychiatrist's response is the equivalent of "Duh".
  • From The Young Ones:

Maggie: And now, I'm gonna be looking at what it's like to be a young unemployed adult! Because--more young adults are becoming unemployed on account of they can't find work! Basically, the problem is this: if you haven't got a job, then you outta work! And that means only one thing-- unemployment!


Music (this folder is about Music)[edit | hide]

All examples found in songs are here!

  • Weird Al's Albuquerque.

That snorkel's been just like a snorkel to me!
Hey, you got weasels on your face.

    • That's when I knew it was true love!
    • Likewise, his song You Don't Love Me Anymore, in which he expresses that he gets the impression his significant other, well, doesn't love him anymore, citing the reason for such suspicious as being things as poisoning him, holding up a knife, putting piranhas in his bath again, etc.
  • The Beatles, in Come Together, gave us such enlightening information as "He's got feet down below his knees" and "One and one and one is three". You don't say.
    • They gained the grand prize for this trope in All You Need Is Love, in which everything except the "all you need is love" sentiment is basically saying "anything that humans are able to do, humans can do."

Nothing you can do that can't be done, nothing you can sing that can't be sung

  • The viral YouTube video of Rebecca Black's song Friday withholds any traces of instinct to take the song seriously.

Yesterday was Thursday/ Today it is Friday/ Tomorrow is Saturday/ And Sunday comes afterwards...

    • Nobody lampshades it better than Hitler: [1]
  • Talking Heads' song Once in a Lifetime has the lyrics "there is water at the bottom of the ocean." Obvious statement much?
  • So Yesterday by Hilary Duff states that "If the light is off, then it isn't on" and "You can change your clothes (if you wanna)". No, really?
  • Forever Young from the second Care Bears movie includes the line, "You'll be with me until/The sun shines through the night./It never will."
    • Clearly someone's never been to the North Pole.
  • In Bad' by U2, Bono sings at the top of his lungs, "I'M WIDE AWAKE! I'M WIDE AWAKE! I'M WIDE AWAKE!" then softly croons the brilliant corollary, "I'm not sleeping." Yes, I gathered that.
  • The song All or Nothing by Whitesnake includes the line "My heart is burning/And the fire is hot".
  • The classic '60s love song Baby I'm Yours (first recorded by Barbara Lewis) has the narrator say that he/she is "yours" until a number of impossible events happen (until the stars fall from the sky, until 2+2 is 3), then helpfully elaborate "In other words, until I die/the end of time/eternity."
  • "Foolish Questions"
  • The chorus of Bowling Ball by Superchic[k]: "You need that boy like a bowling ball dropped on your head, which means not at all."
  • Los Bravos helpfully informs us, Black is Black.
  • The background singers in Manfred Mann's The Mighty Quinn at one point carol, "We're singin' a song!"
  • For some reason, The Beach Boys make a point of mentioning in the chorus of Little Saint Nick that "Christmas comes this time each year."
  • The Simon and Garfunkel song The Boxer, when performed in concert, usually includes an extra verse that contains the line: "I'm older than I once was and younger than I'll be. That's not unusual." Is this a lampshade or an intensifier?
  • In America's A Horse with No Name, the singer feels the need to point out that "The heat was hot."
  • In the music video for Thriller, we have Michael Jackson's statement "I'm not like other guys." Even a Funny Aneurysm Moment considering everything that happened to his private life next.
  • Older by They Might Be Giants. The whole song, but epitomized in:

Tiiiime! [Boom! Boom!] Is marching on! [Boom! Boom!] And tiiiime! [Boom!] [[[Beat]]] Is still marching on!

  • Lil Wayne seems to like being Captain Obvious. For example, in I Can Transform Ya he says, "I Can Transform Ya/ Like a Transformer". In Mrs. Officer the guy singing the chorus sings, "I can make you say, Wee-ooh-wee-ooh-wee, Wee-ooh-wee-ooh-wee" and Lil Wayne chimes in with, "Like a cop car".
  • In "Total Trash," Thurston Moore from Sonic Youth insists "it's a natural fact that I'm not no cow."
  • Jonathan Coulton in Betty and Me, on the subject of genetically engineered children:

And although it was expensive, it was legal in the states where it wasn't banned.

  • Lee Ann Womack's song "Liars Lie", after catching her lover trying to lie, the narrator sings:

"Losers lose, winners win/ Cheaters cheat, siners sin/ Dreamers dream, cryers cry/Fools believe, and Liars Lie"

Newspaper Comics (This folder is about Newspaper Caricatures)[edit | hide]

All examples found in comics in the newspaper are here!

  • In Non Sequitur a recurring character has an alter ego named "Obviousman", who swoops in dressed like a superhero, complete with cape and a big red circle and slash over the word "DUH!" on his chest. His mission is to point out the (usually snarky) obvious to the oblivious, though given the intelligence of the people he needs to rescue, he is rarely thanked for this.
  • The narration box often labels items in Dick Tracy that don't need to be described. After 90 years it's still informing readers of his watch-phone, and in 2009 it helpfully pointed out that a game of solitaire was indeed solitaire. (The game had nothing to do with the plot, naturally.)
  • Spider-Man's narration box bangs the reader over the head with the obvious almost as often.
  • Parodied in Rip Haywire where a temporary character says such things as "Sharks!" "It blew up!" and "Why do I keep on shouting the Obvious!"


Professional Wrestling (this folder is about Professional Wrestling)[edit | hide]

All examples found in professional wrestling are here!

  • Professional wrestler-turned-WWE-commentator Tazz is in the habit of calling his broadcast partners "Captain Obvious", when they sum up something that the viewers just saw fifteen seconds ago.
  • TNA commentator Mike Tenay does the same thing whenever the wrestler Rellik is mentioned ("That's 'killer' spelled backwards.") Eric Young later started parodying Mike Tenay on this, referring to Rellik as Rellik-that's-killer-spelled-backwards, as if the entire thing was the guy's name.


Radio (this folder is about Radio)[edit | hide]

All examples heard on radio shows are here!

  • Inverted and parodied in The Bob and Tom Show's recurring "Mr. Obvious" skits. The premise in them is that Mr. Obvious, a the host of a radio call-in show, attempts to help today's caller with what looks to be a difficult problem until the caller reveals enough facts about his problem to make it clear that he has no clue, he can't afford to buy one, and he refuses to rent-to-own, and that the caller would have solved his problem by himself long ago if he weren't so bloody dense.
    • Subverted in the "Sump Pump" episode, where the terrified caller tells Mr. Obvious that there's a bear under his house, and every time it rains he can hear it growling. Mr. Obvious has to explain that this is just the sump pump, pumping water away from the foundation. So the caller crawls under his house to see ... followed by animal roars and screams of pain ... followed by dial tone. "Um ... well, that's all the time we have for today ..."
  • Often used in the British Paul Temple serials, and although it can be slightly jarring at times, since it's radio.....

*Whilst in a burning building* "We'd better get out of here!"
*Gunshot* "He's been shot!"
*After finding someone face-down in a river* "They're dead!"

(Sound FX): Big splash
Little Jim: He's fallen in the wa-ter!

  • Dudley Function on Hello Cheeky would pop in sometimes and give a short lecture about something, never giving more detail than what was instantly obvious.

Barry: And now, Dudley Function to speak about his new LP.
Dudley: It's black and round and it's got scratches on both sides!
Barry: Thank you.


Tabletop Games (this folder is about Tabletop Games)[edit | hide]

All examples found in games with physical equipment, played generally on top of a table but occasionally on the floor, are here!

  • The 4th Edition Dungeons & Dragons Monster Manual has "Bear Lore" - an infamously hilarious example where it requires a DC20 Knowledge (nature) check to learn that bears attack with their claws. Memetic Mutation has extended similar gems of wisdom to fire (DC15: Fire is hot), water (DC25: When immersed in water, organisms with lungs cannot breathe) and bees (DC15: Bees generally live in hives or trees. DC20: BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEES).
    • "DC15: Bears generally live in the woods or caves". Well you could get it wrong, and then your characters think bears live in condos in Florida and vacation in Newfoundland.
    • Given the other creatures inhabiting the typical Dungeons & Dragons world, a less educated person might be forgiven for thinking that bears attack with death rays from their eyes. In fact, in World of Synnibarr, bears do attack with death rays from their eyes.
  • Cthulhu Tech's description for having a low "Support Weapons" skill: "Support Weapons make bigger explosions than other weapons and you think that's cool."
    • Which is actually very useful description showing that low skill in a given area may include not only lack of aptitude but also limited, short-incomplete or even false perceptions. In case quoted the skill of providing tactical support is limited to knowledge of Gatling Good and More Dakka tropes.
  • The Star Wreck RPG has "State the Obvious" as a special ability. Most of the time it isn't very helpful but if the rest of the group Failed a Spot Check it provides a huge bonus. Given that this is "Paranoia: THE SPACE OPERA" this translates to a 25% chance.
  • An old roleplaying story from a Vampire: The Masquerade game has the players trying to put together a plan to defend against an impending attack by the violent Sabbat. One player, pleased with his insight, says, "If I know the Sabbat, when they come, they'll come at night." Everyone just stares at him until somebody breaks character and replies "Of course they'll come at night. They're vampires."
  • The card Duh from the Magic: The Gathering joke set Unhinged invokes this trope. (Reminder text is any italicized text in parentheses that explains rules you already know.)


Theatre (this folder is about Theatre)[edit | hide]

All examples found in plays are here!

  • Shakespeare's characters sometimes don the captain's braid, but often it's because of the limitations of the Elizabethan stage. To paraphrase another page on this wiki, if your actors are in the middle of a sword fight but they're only pretending to be using swords, it's probably helpful if the victim grabs at his chest and cries "O, I am slain!" so the audience knows what happened. Also, if your only set decoration is a big sign that says "Castle of Elsinore", the characters are going to have to provide a description of the castle in their dialogue if you want the audience to visualize it.
    • Plus, at the time only the playwrights themselves kept copies of the entire play; the actors were only given their own lines and the cues that came before them. Shakespeare was also rather stingy with stage directions, so the actors themselves needed the lines to know when their characters had died.
  • The Musical version of The Wedding Singer actually contains the lyric "People called him the wedding singer. He sang at weddings and so the name was that."
  • During the recorded live gig at the Hollywood Bowl, Terry Gilliam of Monty Python fame sang this charming little ditty:

I've got two legs from my hips to the ground
And when I move them they walk around
And when I lift them they climb the stairs
And when I shave them they ain't got hairs!

  • A Very Potter Musical: "You think killing people might make them like you but it doesn't. It just makes people dead."
  • Cyrano De Bergerac:
    • At Act I Scene VI, Roxane sends his Duenna to talk with a very nervous Cyrano:

The Duenna (A sweeping curtsey): Monsieur . . . A message for you:
From our good cousin we desire to know
When and where we may see him privately.
Cyrano (Amazed): To see me?
The Duenna (An elaborate reverence): To see you. We have certain things
To tell you.
Cyrano: Certain
The Duenna Things.

    • Act II Scene VI: After rejecting to serve as a poet with De Guiche, Cyrano considers the posibility to take his play "Agripine" to Cardenal Richelieu:

De Guiche: He is a critic skilled:
He may correct a line or two, at most.
Cyrano (whose face stiffens at once): Impossible! My blood congeals to think
That other hand should change a comma's dot.
De Guiche: But when a verse approves itself to him
He pays it dear, good friend.
Cyrano He pays less dear
Than I myself; when a verse pleases me
I pay myself, and sing it to myself!
De Guiche: You are proud.
Cyrano Really? You have noticed that?

    • At Act I Scene VII, just before Cyrano will fight against one hundred men, he combines this trope with a Badass Boast:

Cyrano: ... And, shortly, you shall see what you shall see!

Video Games (this folder is about Video Games)[edit | hide]

All examples found in computer and console games are here!

  • Shirou in Fate/stay night and the infamous "People die if they are killed!" (What he's saying is that people should die if they're killed; it's taken out of context with the next part, "...that's the way it's supposed to be.") But the real example: this is the guy who also says things like "having sex means getting naked".
  • Many characters in the Sonic the Hedgehog series, most notably the robot assistant from Adventure 2, Omochao.

Omochao: To jump, press the jump button!

Sonic: The whole city is on fire!
Sonic: Lava shoots up from that fiery ground!
Sonic: That tornado is carrying a car!
Silver: I can't catch lasers with my telekinesis!

    • It should be noted for that last one that you can.
    • In Sonic Unleashed it's surprisingly not Chip, but Amy who delivers the most Captain Obvious Lines. It's so bad, she's actually standing around during an important dialogue with the Professor, just to comment afterwards on Sonic's normal day-appearance with something along the lines of "Yes, you definitely look better like this!". And her great insight, that she could do something by helping the Professor—half a game after she actually started doing it.
    • Sonic Adventure: after a cutscene where the Egg Carrier transforms...

Tails: Wow, the ship just transformed. Did you see that?
Sonic: [Gives him the Captain Obvious Look] Now how are we gonna get to the bridge...
Tails: I hate it when he doesn't listen...

      • Then, once you find the level that leads to the bridge, Sonic/Tails up and announces that you're right in front of it. There's a screen just steps away telling you that the door to the level is open... and it doesn't take a genius to find the level in the first place.

Sonic: This must be the way to the sky deck!

    • Sonic himself: "There's a great big tree over there!" Which doesn't make sense becuase he seems to hate it when people do that, and gigantic trees are not uncommon in the Sonicverse.
    • The Final Boss of Sonic Generations consists of your teammates constantly repeating "That looks like a homing shot!". The only one that actually seems to know what a homing shot is is Shadow, who simply says "That's a homing shot".
  • RuneScape has quite a few examples.
    • There is an "examine" system for most NPC, items and scenery. And they are extremely helpful.
      • Examine text for precious ore is "Precious ore."
      • Examine text for most rocks are "A rock."
      • Examine text for iron bars are "It is a bar of iron."
      • Examine text for Forgotten Warriors are "A warrior who has been long forgotten."
  • In Metroid: Other M, Samus apparently has to explain every obvious detail in EVERY CUTSCENE.
    • May be justified, as it's presented as a story being told by Samus to someone else (or a journal).
  • Alyx Vance in the Half Life 2 episodes has a tendency to announce out loud every single thing she encounters, including the player's actions, new monsters, and Dr. Kleiner's screencasts. Sometimes her excessive talkativeness reaches the level of Stop Helping Me!.
  • Handmaiden/Disciple's response to Atton's sarcastic "At least we know it's not a trap" (on the Exchange boss' meeting request)
  • Navi from The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time is considered quite annoying for repeatedly bugging the player to tell him/her the most obvious things (or things she's already recently said.)
    • And even things that have /already/ happened. For example, standing on a ghost ship, reaching land, hopping off, and being greeted by "The ship is sinking! We have to abandon ship!"
    • Ciela in The Legend of Zelda Phantom Hourglass significantly ups the ante, especially in the cutscenes following the introduction of the first two spirits.

Leaf: I am Leaf, the Spirit of Power. Blah blah blah.
Ciela: Look, Link! It's the Spirit of Power, Leaf!

    • And how could we forget The Legend of Zelda the Minish Cap's Ezlo? Run into a closed door, he will tell you that it's closed. Every time, even if it was an accident. Open a Warp-Mark. He will tell you that the explosion always frightens him. Every time. Come near a small tornado, which you obviously have to jump in to. He tells you to jump in and remarks what a great idea of his this is. God, this guy is annoying!
    • The Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess' Midna doesn't do it as often, and makes up for it by being awesome, but she does have the habit of interrupting boss battles to point out incredibly obvious weak points. This may just be because she doesn't think much of Link's intelligence...
    • And don't forget about The Legend of Zelda Skyward Sword's Fi, with such "helpful" tips as informing you that a ship is under attack by a monster while said monster's tentacles are popping in through the walls and floor all over the place, and then stopping you again as you're about to exit said ship only to inform you that she detects something outside the ship. And said something is probably the monster. Which you have already been informed of. Not to mention warning you about low hearts and low batteries on your Wiimote in spite of the game already having a sound-effect indicating the former and an icon in the corner indicating the latter.
        • Fi is easly the worst of the lot. Fi will also happily repeat everything that anyone tells you to do. If a character tells you to go to the woods, Fi will "helpfully" pop out and tell you that there's an 85% chance that you should go to the woods. Then, once you get to the woods, she will tell you that there's an 93% chance that you should now do whatever you came there to do.
  • In Metal Gear Solid, while searching for one of the male hostages, the main character, Solid Snake, looks down through an air vent and upon seeing a female exclaims "A woman! Not him...".
  • In Halo, after you come across a huge cave made out of metal with symbols engraved on it in a canyon which has been obviously cut out of the ground, Cortana says "This cave is not a natural formation. Someone built it, so it must lead somewhere."
    • Made even worse by the fact that you're on what is clearly a constructed ring. The entire "planet" is not a natural formation...
    • Cortana does this at the end of the first level as well, informing you that "it would be a very good time to leave" when your spaceship is about to be shot down.
    • Another amusing example is from Halo Legends, where she describes the Milky Way saying, "This galaxy is vast."
  • From here:

Q: Will you need to have to have an internet connection to play Star Trek Online?
A: Yes.

  • Increasingly, Phoenix Wright's inner monologue tends to spell out gags and hints in other characters' dialogue.
  • A certain NPC from late in the game The Suffering will tell the player to blast the remains of the fire demons or they will revive. But as long as this NPC is alive, they will blast the remains for you. In a more subtle way, the player can unlock diary and scrapbook pages (or even ticker tape) detailing the lay of the land. Much of this is after learning all relevant facts.
  • Tsutomu in Gotcha Force. His habit of notifying you "This will hit!" after it hits the target is beyond baffling. He even says "Well, it's obvious!" at times, which still doesn't do anything to stop his steady stream of obvious comments. You half-expect him to say "I'm breathing oxygen!" at any moment.
  • Crypto in Destroy All Humans!! 2.

[The mothership explodes, Killing Pox and scattering the weapons all over Earth]
Crypto: "Uh-oh, that can't be good."

Is cursed.

    • Likewise, while Figaro Castle is burning, the guards can only point out "The castle is on fire!"
  • The Soldier in Team Fortress 2:

Announcer: Intruder Alert! Red Spy in the base!
Soldier: A Red Spy is in the base?
Announcer: Protect the briefcase!
Soldier: We need to protect the briefcase!

    • In the context that a Red Spy is loose in their base.

Blue Spy: Tell me, did anyone happen to kill a RED Spy on their way here? No? Then we still have a problem... (lays a Sniper with a knife in his back on the table)
Soldier: And a knife.

"You're not going to shoot me, are you? If you do, I'll die, you know."

    • Much later, Dante and Vergil do defeat him, but the one who actually kills him is Lady, his daughter. Yes, by shooting him.
  • In Microprose's Magic: The Gathering game, each town has a Wise Man who dispenses advice. Occasionally this advice is genuinely useful, other times it's related only to the back story—and sometimes, when another village has given you a quest, he'll say "I see the people of [village] have asked you to [quest]".
  • Lampshaded in Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War: Dark Crusade:

Ork sidekick: Boss! We're getting shot at!
Warboss Gorgutz: Ain't you the master of the obvious?

  • Barry Burton in the original Resident Evil though the Game Cube version tones it down. Did you know that weapons are especially powerful against living things?
    • Come to think of it, Ingrid Hunnigan from 4 is guilty of this, one of the many things lampshaded by the Lets Plays. "You need to get out of there." "You need to find out how to open that door."
  • The opening level of Army of Two includes this gem: "You can die in combat."
  • Nall from Lunar: The Silver Star. He stated the obvious so often that the game's strategy guide came very close to making a drinking game out of it.
  • From a gameplay hint in Lego Batman: "Toxic waste is poisonous".
  • Chuck from Backyard Football, in the tutorials. In the actual commentary, he's much smarter.
  • The video game magazine GamePro give ProTips for games they review of varying usefulness. One egregiously unhelpful hint was for Doom.

ProTip: To Defeat the Cyberdemon, shoot at it until it dies.

Half the school is male.
Half the world is male.
I'm a male.

    • And of course there's Dojima in Persona 4 when he eventually deduced that the perp behind the Inaba murders is in Inaba.
  • In World of Warcraft there is a quest to deliver a message to Arcanist Vandril warning him of a dark presence in the Ghostlands.
  • In Dawn of War Chaos Rising, every single sentence uttered by nomen omen Captain Davian Thule is painfully obvious. It is, however, consistent with game mythos, as all Dreadnoughts are operated by Marines who are on the verge of death and show many symptoms of senile dementia.
  • Issun from Okami does this pretty often, but it's possibly justified since most English players aren't too aware about Japanese legends and stuff.
  • Splinter Cell:

Enemy soldier (over radio): Alarm stage decreased, alarm stage back to normal.
Grímsdóttir: OK, it looks like the alarm stage went back to normal.

  • In Final Fantasy X when Yuna is about to jump off the tall tower during her wedding with Seymour, Seymour told her that "If you fall, you'll die.". Yuna did jump off the tower, but instead of falling to her death as Seymour has states beforehand, she summoned her aeon to catch her mid-fall. This summoning action kept her from dying from the fall.
  • Final Fantasy IV: The After Years has Leonora and Palom. Palom's the one fitting the trope, but only because Leonora is really asking for it.

Palom: You know what fire is?
Leonora: No, what is it?
Palom: Its a fire attack.

Genis: I feel... mana welling up...
Genis: Wait. I sense... incredible mana.
Genis: It's mana... Powerful mana is coming out!
Genis: What could it be? There's a staggering amount of mana flowing from that lightning...

  • In Mass Effect, one quest has you looking for an Alliance probe before someone finds it and accidentally sets off its nuclear Self-Destruct Mechanism. You eventually track it to inside a mineshaft, and your two party members will helpfully comment that there's no way it got there on its own and you should expect a trap. One of your responses is, "Your grasp of the obvious is inspiring."
    • Because your squadmates usually have the role of making sure the, ah, slower members of the audience understand what's going on, a lot of their lines can come across this way, in particular their lines when starting combat. ("Enemies in front!" No, really, I thought the half-dozen geth firing assault rifles were part of a surprise birthday party.) Kaidan unfortunately seems to get the worst of it.
    • And in the sequel, the Lair of the Shadowbroker DLC gives us this exchange:

as a giant flying truck hurtles towards you.
Liara: Truck.
Shepard: I know.
Liara: TRUCK!
Shepard: I KNOW!

  • Upon spawning in most maps, heroes will announce their names in Star Wars Battlefront 2. The funniest one is probably Yoda's "Yoda I am. Fight I will."
  • In Dark Chronicle at the end of Chapter 3, The Sage of the Stars, dungeon, Max and Monica enter the lighthouse on the cape while it is being attacked by the Fire Squall. The lighthouse is pretty much ablaze and is quite visible from where the two and their other party member are standing. A bunch of dialogue ensues, and when Monica gets close to the edge, the flames spurt up almost burning her, Max then exclaims, "Oh no! The lighthouse is on fire!"
    • Inverted at the beginning of Chapter 4, Goodbye Shingala, Pau has already left his house, asking you to watch Shingala, all of a sudden Shingala gets up, Max then exclaims, "He's trying to leave." Even though he had no way of knowing that.
      • Set straight again right after that as Shingala runs to the ocean cave dungeon(which Max and Monica must then explore), Max then says, "He's heading for the ocean!"
  • In the intro to Super Mario Galaxy 2, Mario arrives to find that Bowser has grown to Godzilla-like stature and is stomping around the Mushroom Kingdom. Bowser still finds it necessary to inform Mario that "I'M HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE!"
    • Luigi shouts "STAR!" every time you get a grand star with him in both games.
    • In the Battle Belt Galaxy, a living sign tells you that you need to kill everything to progress. Well, that would be so useful to know if it wasn't glaringly obvious there's no other escape, and more so on the last planet before you had to kill an enemy to progress.
  • Lampshaded in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, when Drake and Flynn are inside the museum:

Drake: All right, there's the tower.
Flynn: Getting closer.
Drake: Appreciate that update, Captain Obvious.

  • Dungeons and Dragons Online has a "Dungeon Master" feature enabled by default, in which a narrator speaks up at key points in the quest. This helps enforce that tabletop feel, and can be really helpful at times. However, the Dungeon Masters can go into captain obvious mode. ("There is a pair of signal crystals on either side of the door! There must be a way to open it...")
    • If you consider it, it's not that bad: the Dungeon Master is like the one at the actual table, where you (obviously) wouldn't be able to see them.
    • DDO's loading screens will offer you "tips". Some are helpful. Others warn that falling can hurt you.
    • The trap spot can also get like this, as it contiues to show up while the trap is going off. My acute senses make me feel that those giant spikes coming out of the floor are dangerous.
  • The titular character's narration does this a LOT in Alan Wake. Bonus points if he throws in a "literary" reference.
  • There's a rather bad one in Condemned: In the department store stage when Ethan finds the Matchmaker dead he comments "Well he certainly didn't kill himself!"
  • In Jade Empire, sometimes the tip box that appears when you die will say "You have died."
  • Some messages during campaigns in Age of Empires II. For example, in Joan of Arc, you come across a bridge that is quite clearly out, and one of your knights feels the need to tell you "The bridge is out! We must find another way to Chinon!"
    • Lord Saladin, we have captured a Frankish war vessel!
  • John Madden had a horrible tendency to do this in the Madden football games.
  • Setsumi gets one of these in Narcissu Side 2nd (and the translator even comments on it in the script file):

Setsumi: "Well, you're a devoted Christian, right?"
Himeko: "Let's see... if you don't like 'fake Catholic'.... 'former Christian' would work too."
Setsumi (narrating): That would mean that in the past it was true, but now it wasn't.

  • Cedric, the (ahem) helpful owl from King's Quest V. Look out, Graham! That bear looks dangerous! That desert looks endless! That sea looks wet! That snake is POIsonous!
  • Albedo from Xenosaga tells us that "Pain is such a vital part in realizing one's existence." Gee, ya think?
  • GLaDOS from Portal has some moments as well: "Hold on. Did you just toss that Aperture Science Thing-We-Don't-Know-What-It-Does into an Aperture Science Emergency Intelligence Incinerator?" and (the curiosity core) "Hey, you're that lady from the test. Hi!"
    • "The enrichment center promises to always provide a safe testing environment. In dangerous testing environments, the enrichment center promises to always provide useful advice. For instance, the floor here will kill you. Try to avoid it."
  • Jumper Two Editor has a helpful hint as a default text for help-boxes:

Tip: Don't die.

  • Ace Combat 04 features Sky-Eye who constantly repeats obvious information—like actions you've already taken—back to you. He makes sure you know when you've launched a missile. Though, it is sometimes useful in keeping your situational awareness up when things get really intense.

Sky-Eye: "Mobius One, Fox Two."

    • This is repeated through all of the Ace Combat serries since they all have AWACS of some form or another and they all are exactly the same. Your squadron/wingman on Ace Combat 5 and beyond also do this.
      • Though it does make sense, *real* AWACS would be telling the pilots of aircraft under their control *exactly* what is going on; flying a plane is like the 'pat your head rub your tummy' multitasking exercise up to eleven... and that's *before* bad guys start shooting at you.
    • Also the aircraft's onboard warning system telling you things like 'pull up' over and over again. This is especially annoying on missions where you *have* to fly low (e.g. flying under radar or through canyons to reach a target). Especially funny when it mixes with the aforementioned AWACS/Squadron members and you get something like this:

Your flying really low and fast on an attack run:
onboard computer: "Cation: Pull Up"
Still flying low, trying to concentrate here...
AWACS: "Blaze, your altitude is to low, pull up"
Squadron member: "Captain! Pull up!"
Around this time you'll probably be so distracted that a SAM has got a lock on you so:
AWACS: "Missile lock!"
Thanks man, never noticed all the red 'missile warning' lights...
onboard computer: beep beep beep beep beep beep...
Squadron member: "Captain! Missile! Break break!"
Hey don't haven't you guys got your own planes to worry about? No wonder you get no kills...

    • This is even invoked in-universe at one point in Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War during a Pearl Harbor-esque level.

Osean 1: (the attack already well underway) This is not a drill!
Osean 2: Well thanks for the heads up, you IDIOT!

  • Catherine announces each boss with the helpful "... has appeared. It's the killer. Do not die."
  • Bastion's narrator does this a lot. While it is intentional and a big part of the game experience and mechanics, there are points where, for example, the player is just doing random things, such as destroying everything. That action is then followed by the narrator saying something such as "The Kid lets off some steam by destroying some crates."
  • In DuckTales 2, Bubba warns Scrooge McDuck that one treasure chest is a trap that will lock him up. Bubba warns Scrooge immediately after freeing him from said trap.
  • In Half-Life 1, after hordes of monsters from another dimension arrive into the facility and turn it into a stage of violence and terror, scientists can sometimes be heard saying: "Well, the dimensional breach is definitely trasmitting organic matter."
  • The PC Hidden Object Game Haunted Manor: Queen of Death has as its Big Bad a soul-sucking demon which somewhat resembles a giant bat. Whenever it appears onscreen, it hisses at the player and disappears in a cloud of mist while declaring, "I AM EEEEVIL." Did we mention this is a soul-sucking demon?


Web Animation (this folder is about Web Animation)[edit | hide]

All examples found in cartoons on the internet are here!

Singer: You know those guys from that band, Limozeen? Well they turned their tour bus into a space machine! They're still Limozeen...
Larry: We're still Limozeeeen!
Singer: But they're in space!
Larry: But we're in space!?
Teeg Dougland: (walks in) I'm afraid I've got some bad news, boys. You're in space.

  • From Red vs. Blue after Donut has been caught in an explosion:

Griff: Sarge! We really need to get Donut airlifted out of here!
Sarge: Would you put that in a memo and entitle it "Shit I already know"?

    • Also:

Tucker: Hey dude, the jeep blew up!
Church: (two feet away from said jeep when it blew up) No kidding. Thanks for the update, Tucker.

  • Gordon's thoughts in Freeman's Mind after two hours of killing hostile soldiers, culminating in escaping heavy caliber machine gun and rocket launcher emplacements.

Gordon: You know, I'm really starting to think maybe this whole thing isn't a rescue operation.

Blue Unicorn: Charliiee. Chaaaarliiieee. Chaaahrliiee. Chaaar....
Charlie: I'm right here, what do you want?!
Blue Unicorn: We're on a bridge, Charlie!!


Web Comics (this folder is about Web Comics)[edit | hide]

All examples found in comics on the internet are here!

Jay: The lights went out!
Jag: Well said, my dear, but this isn't radio.

And I know that it [the miscarriage]'s often much harder on the woman than on the man.

Richard: (stunned) "Missionaries."
Maikos: "Of the gods."
Richard: "Of course of the gods. Would I have made this face if they were missionaries of the carpenters?"
Maikos: "My apologies."

Red Mage: "Fighter, you'll use your swords to hurt them."
Fighter: "That's what swords are designed to do!"


Web Original (this folder is about Web Originals)[edit | hide]

All examples found in content native to the internet which are not cartoons or comics are here!

Kenstar: Wow, she's so beautiful...
Yusuke: You're only saying that because she looks exactly like a pretty girl.
Kenstar: That would be why I said it.


Western Animation (this folder is about Western Animation)[edit | hide]

All examples found in cartoons made in America or Europe are here!

  • From the Futurama episode "The Honking":

Leela: The tracks lead here!
Fry: Thanks, eagle eye.

    • From the movie Bender's Game:

Fry: So. It is down to this. A dungeon... and dragons!
Zoidberg: I didn't see it coming.

    • "From the makers of Futurama"
    • From the first "Tales of Interest" anthology:

Professor Farnsworth: You killed me! You killed me!
Leela: Oh, what have I done?
Professor Farnsworth: Didn't I just tell you? You killed me!

    • From "Crimes of the Hot"

Zoidberg: Strange. Why would Nixon, an awkward, uncomfortable man, suddenly throw a party, one of the most social events imaginable! (Snaps claw.) It's a trap, is why! They're going to deactivate all the robots!... I don't hear any gasping.
Leela: We already figured that out.

    • From "Love's Labours Lost in Space":

Computer: This is Vergon 6.
Professor Farnsworth: This is Vergon 6.
Amy: Buh!

  • In the Scooby Doo episode "Spooky Space Kook", the gang enters a building which has a large sign that says "Machine Shop". Upon entering...

Daphne: It looks like a shop!

    • Scooby gave us any number of "no duh" moments.

(Monster of the Week comes in, roaring loudly)
"It's the (name of monster)!"

"He's chasing us!"

    • The biggest offender was Velma's line in the green ghost episode:

"They went out the door!"

Toph: Wait. It's a trap!
Katara: Really? No kidding. Is that why we're sitting in a wooden cage right now? Gee, how'd you figure out it was a trap?
Toph: Not for us, Katara. We're the bait. He wants Aang.

    • Played straight with Zuko's completely sincere declaration that:

Zuko: Doing nothing is a waste of time!

    • And also

Katara: Haru not being able to Earthbend is like me not being able to Waterbend!

    • Plus

Hakoda: Everything okay?
Katara: We're fine, dad.
Hakoda: [Offering his hand to Aang] I'm Hakoda. Katara, and Sokka's father.
Katara: He knows who you are. I just called you "dad," didn't I?
Hakoda: I guess you're right.
Aang: [Shaking Hakoda's hand] Nice to officially meet you, Chief Hakoda.

      • With a worse variation in the film:

Haru: Dad! (to the Gaang) This is my father.
Kevin Murphy: The guy you just called "Dad?" Get out!

Zim: "But I must have my tanks, or I won't... get them!"
Zim (wearing a bear suit): Greetings, my Tallest. I'm in a bear suit.

Ron: Okay, that looks suspicious.
Kim: Thank you, Captain Obvious.

    • Drakken has them too, after Kim and Ron escape from being chained to a wall without being guarded, he gives this insight:

Drakken: They've escaped!
Shego: No, really?

Rarity: Twilight! It's raining.
Twilight: No, really?

  • Donatello seemed to be the appointed Captain Obvious of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, at least in the '80s-'90s cartoon. Raphael would sometimes call him out on that.
  • Flash in Justice League after seeing the stuffed T-Rex in the Batcave:

Flash: "That's a giant dinosaur!"
Alfred: "And here I thought Batman was the detective."

  • Oh, boy. Transformers Armada. These kids probably had a lot to do with the Transformers fandom's dislike of human characters in general. A great deal of the time, their role in an episode was to spend half an hour giving statements like this:

Optimus: [Gets hit, falls down]
Alexis, [to Rad and Carlos, who are standing right next to her and watching the same fight] Oh, no! You guys, Optimus is down!
Rad: Oh, no!

    • And then Transformers Energon came along and It Got Worse. Mostly it was due to an incomplete translation, though. Time would often be filled with Optimus saying to people who probably have some idea as to why they came to some dangerous place locked and loaded, "Remember, our mission is to protect the planet/Energon/injured character." Also, the first third or so of the series consists of episodes in which bad guys will steal a cache of Energon that the good guys just discovered. Every single time, someone (maybe more than one someone) will say "They're after our Energon!" Similarly, the bad guys would talk about their plan and say "We need more Energon!" as if they'd just come to the conclusion. In fact, all of the repetitive dialogue that plagues the series is delivered as if it's something that's just dawned on the person who has said it twice already.
  • The line from an episode of South Park, which Randy delivered like it was a huge revelation.

Randy: If we're still alive in the morning, then we'll know that we aren't dead.

    • The Coon and Friends saga has an actual super hero, Captain Hindsight, who arrives at the scenes of disasters to point out that the accident could have been prevented and then leaves. Usually the rescue workers then pack up and leave as well.
  • A line from American Dad:

Hayley: They think you're Kevin Bacon!
Roger: Yes, Hayley, I understand things that happen around me.

    • And in another episode:

Steve: It's the last clue!
Stan: DUH! REALLY?! Sorry, it's been a really long night.

  • Timon and Pumba The Series—Timon and Pumba volunteer for a circus act and must follow orders from an obviously psychotic clown who puts them in ever more dangerous predicaments. After avoiding death numerous times, Pumba makes this comment.

Pumba: "What I still don't know is, why is he called Mr. Meanie?"
Timon: "..."

Number 1: But if you're my uncle, then that makes Grandfather my grandfather!
Father: What are you -- President of the Obvious Club?

  • "I am a BANANA!"
  • One episode of The Simpsons had Homer attempting to play "Horse Whisperer". His advice? "When the race starts, run real fast!"
    • And one can't forget, Ralph Wiggum's "My cat's breath smells like cat food."
      • Ralph Wiggum is, naturally, a goldmine of these. This is the man who brought us "Fun toys are fun!"
    • Dr. Marvin Monroe proposed an experiment wherein he would raise a baby to adulthood in a sealed box, providing it only with basic nutrition, along with the occasional icy shower or electric shock. His theory: "The subject will be socially malajusted, and will harbor a deep resentment towards me".
    • There was also a scene in the episode "Homer vs. Dignity": When Homer in the panda suit is repeatedly shocked with a cattle prod, Lisa exclaims, "Something's wrong! Terribly wrong!" No, really?
    • "Wait a minute... THAT'S not the wallet inspector..."
    • "Money can be exchanged for goods and services."
    • Marge: "Cannons are designed to hurt."
    • Marge: "Maybe [what's in your hair] is just shampoo. That washes right out."
    • After Lisa's goalkeeping results in a shining victory for her team, Marge praises her performance: "By blocking the net, I really think you helped your team!"
    • Bart: "What good's a credit card if you can't even use it?" As opposed to what else you'd do with it?
    • Don Vittorio in "Homie the Clown": "To murder a funny man of such genius would be a crime!" Although he may have meant a crime by mafia standards.
    • Also, a slightly subtler example from the episode "Bart's Inner Child", overlapping Exposition:

Homer: Well, here we are at the Brad Goodman lecture.
Lisa: We know, Dad.
Homer: I just thought I'd remind everybody. After all, we did agree to attend this self-help seminar.
Bart: What an odd thing to say...

    • In the episode "Treehouse of Horror IX":

Lisa: Of course, somehow Snake's hair is controlloing dad and making him-
Marge: Oh Lisa, everybody already figured that out a while ago.

    • In "Last Tap Dance in Springfield": Chief Wiggum, caught in a rat trap baited with cheese says "My mistake was grabbing the cheese".
    • In "Jazzy and the Pussycats" Bart exclaims "My arm! It hurts where the tiger's biting it!"
    • Combine with Idiot Hero / Captain Oblivious and Overly Long Gag:

Cult Member: We're having a free get-acquainted session at our resort this weekend.
Homer: How much is this free resort weekend?
Cult Member: It's free.
Homer: And when is this weekend?
Cult Member: It's this weekend.
Homer: Uh-huh. And how much does it cost?
Cult Member: Um, it's free.
Homer: I see. And when is it?
Cult Member: It's... this weekend.
Homer: And what are you charging for this free weekend?

  • Dora the Explorer and children's educational TV in general tend to state the obvious. Justified, as a lot common sense knowledge we take for granted aren't privy to many children yet.
  • In Teen Titans, about every time the alarm goes off, one of them says "trouble". Really? I never would have guessed.
  • Nightwing in Batman: Under the Red Hood partly because he likes to chat and Batman doesn't talk so much so Nightwing just states the obvious as a way to pass the time.

He's chatty. It's part of his charm.

Rigby: I see you have learned the ways of Death Kwon Do.
Mordecai: I see you're pretty good at pointing out things people are already aware of.

  • In Adventure Time, after the horse they've been trying to get rid of falls through their roof:

Finn: Aww! It's in our house now!
Jake: That's obvious, Finn, you don't have to point that out!

  • Courage the Cowardly Dog was like this during some early episodes. Though he did this less frequently as the season went on, it contributed to the decision to limit his speaking abilities in the following seasons.
  • Family Guy had one episode that consisted of this:

Peter: We're playing Texas Hold 'Em.
Ted Turner: Are aces high or low?
Peter: They go both ways.
Bill Gates: Heh heh, he said they go both ways!
Everyone laughs
Ted Turner: Like a bisexual!
Micheal Eisenhower: Thank you, Ted, that was the joke.

Fire is the leading cause of fire!

Yogi: Now then, students, these are called skis, and I use them on this white stuff, which is called snow!
Doggie Daddy: That's it, folks! Stop the lesson! This is mortifyin'!
Augie Doggie: Yogi, we know all that!

  • Dorothy Ann on The Magic School Bus whenever she does her research. "According to my research, after chewing comes swallowing!". Oh, really?
  • In Batman: Under the Red Hood, a bad guy says to his minions something to the effect of "And we'll have a welcome waiting for [Batman], won't we? And by that I mean some guys with guns! Who're gonna KILL him!" When a minion tells him that's kind of obvious, he says he was making it clear because the Mooks' level of fail-itude means they might be stupid enough to need the explanation.
  • Metalocalypse: Dr. Rockzo the Rock n' Roll Clown (he does cocaine) will scream that he does cocaine while snorting cocaine.
  • Mon Suno: Jinja said she didn't want to be one but she felt the need to point out it was a trap.


Other (this folder is about everything else)[edit | hide]

All examples that don't belong anywhere else are here!

Like any other siblings, DZ twins may look similar, particularly given that they are the same age. However, DZ twins may also look very different from each other. They may be of different sexes or the same sex. The same holds true for brothers and sisters from the same parents, meaning that DZ twins are simply brothers and/or sisters who happen to be the same age.

(while the car is surrounded by giant snowflakes) "These are snowflakes!"
"And yet this wall of ice only seems smooth and solid. From this tiny perspective, I can see that nothing is solid, no matter how it appears!"
"Yes... these are water molecules! H2O... Two hydrogen atoms bonded to a single oxygen atom."

Real Life (this folder is about Real Life)[edit | hide]

All examples observed in real life are here!

  • The actual Captain Obvious is one of New York's self-proclaimed real-life superheroes, and goes about shouting the obvious through a megaphone. His bio states that he was thrown out of the X-Men for being too obvious. He frequently partners with Squeegeeman
  • Los Angeles reporter Ric Romero became a punchline on Fark.com after reporting on the "new" phenomenon of blogging in October 2005 (almost a year after blogs led the way in the media storm that basically ended Dan Rather's broadcast career). He's an easy "go to" name whenever someone else in the media reports breathlessly on something "new" that is already Common Knowledge.
    • Ric turned this on its ear in 2009 by embracing his "Captain Obvious" image and challenging Farkers (members and regular visitors of Fark.com) to give to a charity campaign he sponsored.
  • Comedian Greg Berehndt admitted that his book He's Just Not That Into You makes him come across like this, but explains that some of the people who hit him up for relationship advice really are that dense.

Woman: Greg, I need help. See, my boyfriend is married, and I...
Berehndt Okay, now stop and repeat that back to yourself.

  • During testimony she gave to a Congressional committee on smoking, a teenaged Brooke Shields commented, in all seriousness, "Smoking kills. If you're killed, you've lost a very important part of your life."
  • U.S. President Calvin Coolidge, nicknamed Silent Cal, was one of the best Deadpan Snarkers we've ever had in the Oval Office, had this to say: "When more and more people are thrown out of work, unemployment results."

Reporter: "What did the preacher have to talk about, Mr. President?"
Coolidge: "Sin."
Reporter: "Well, what did he say about it?"
Coolidge: "He was against it."

    • This anecdote is also told with Mrs. Coolidge asking Mr. Coolidge.
  • Clark Kellogg: "Your shooting percentage goes down significantly when your shot is challenged."
  • Mercenary commander "Mad Mike" Hoare included a short essay on leadership in his book on the Simba rebellion in the Congo. In it he mentions the importance of reacting immediately when the bullets start flying, even if it's an obvious order like "Take cover!", as it makes the commander sound like he's on top of the situation. Having achieved this of course, the commander's next orders had better be more useful.
  • Spencer Perceval, the only British Prime Minister to get assassinated, had the last words "I am murdered." Yeah, the man with the gun who just shot you was a good clue to that.
  • In 1949 the BBC reporter John Snagge commenting the Boat Race opposing Oxford and Cambridge said : "I can't see who's in the lead but it's either Oxford or Cambridge".
  • (The Customer is) Not Always Right has several stories of the Captain Obviouses of the real world
  • Brazilian sports narrator Galvão Bueno. "Went to the ground and fell!", "Inverted the ball to the other side!", "There are only three possible results: win, loss or draw"...
  • College football commentator Brent Musberger. He has his own drinking game.
  • Allergy warnings.

Can of sardines: Contains fish.

Sainsbury's Peanuts: May contain nuts. [I should hope so!]
Ahum. Peanuts are legumes (related to peas, beans, etc) so people who are allergic to real nuts aren't necessarily allergic to peanuts. However, peanuts are often packaged using the same machinery used to package other nuts as well. So a package of peanuts may contain (traces of) nuts.
    • Wal-Mart brand (Great Value) salmon actually says, on the back of the can, "Allergy Warning: Contains Salmon".

Jar of peanut butter: Contains peanuts.
Cheddar: Contains milk products.
Can of "Pumpkin": Ingredients: Pumpkins. [That's all it says. To be fair, I think the important factor here is that pumpkins are the only thing on the list, IE the can does not contain anything else (preservatives, water, etc).]
Bottle of Aspirin: Do not use if you are allergic to aspirin.
British bottle of milk: May contain milk. [Why do they need to hedge their bets? I'd really like to see the bottle of milk that didn't actually contain milk?]

Nutty Nut Nut Cluster Bar. It's NUT-rageously NUT-ritious! Start your day the NUTTY way! This product may contain nuts.

  • A CNN news crawl shortly into the US invasion on Afghanistan: "[some US general] on Osama: 'He's either alive or dead in some tunnel'". Still impressive in that they ruled out dead outside of a tunnel.
    • In a similar vein, Donald Rumsfeld at one point declared that he was either in Afghanistan, in some other country, or dead. So... if he was dead, he must have been in international waters?
      • Well, he is NOW.
    • Rumsfeld made a similar statement when asked where the WMD's in Iraq were.

"We know where they are. They're in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south and north somewhat"

  • "Do not attempt to stop blade with hands or genitals" - instructions on a chainsaw in Sweden.
  • Anything that comes out of John Madden's mouth. Like "Hey, the offensive linemen are the biggest guys on the field, they're bigger than everybody else, and that's what makes them the biggest guys on the field."
    • "If they don't score points, they're not going to win."
    • "If they want to score, they have to go down the field."
    • "Now remember: the blitz can only come from the left, the middle, or the right."
  • Larry King once asked Vladimir Putin what happened to Kursk. His answer? "It sunk."
  • 11 Most Painfully Obvious Newspaper Articles Ever
  • John Tesh was allowed to guest commentate during the 1994 Lillehammer Winter Olympics, and gave a variety of gems such as: "If I hadn't've seen it with my own eyes, I wouldn't have seen it.".
    • His current radio show has frequent Captain Obvious moments.
  • Economist Frederic Bastiat was of the opinion that it's his job to state the obvious, since there are so many people—including those with significant political power—who have no economic understanding at all.
  • All of Yogi Berra's famous "Yogi-isms" that weren't thought-provoking oxymorons were obvious statements raised to the level of Zen Koans.
    • "I always thought that record would stand until it was broken."
    • "You can observe a lot just by watching."
    • "The other teams could make trouble for us if they win."
  • Dutch soccer coach Johan Cruijff is so famous for this, his way of speaking (dubbed "Cruijffian") has its own Wikipedia page: http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cruijffiaans. Some gems:

"When we've got the ball, they can't score."
"When you've got the ball, you don't have to defend, 'cause there's only one ball."
"You've got to shoot, otherwise you can't score."
"Look, the ball is an essential part of the game."
"You can't win without the ball."

    • It becomes less absurd if you treat them as tongue-in-cheek arguments against overly defensive play. Which make them even more hilarious.
    • Along similar lines, hockey legend Wayne Gretzky said: "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."
  • Christopher Nolan, in speaking to the press about his third Batman film, attempted to comment on what characters to expect without actually giving away any information. Thus: "We'll use many of the same characters as we have all along, and we'll be introducing some new ones." No way.
  • Any elevator in Brazil will have this warning, which translated says "Warning to the users: Before entering the elevator, ensure that it [the elevator car] is on the current floor". This was added because of old elevators, where one could force open the door, but with new elevators which all have sensors and failsafe switches, it became rather obvious.
  • A British scientist on Lateline in Australia said that it would have been better if the March 2011 nuclear reactor explosions in Japan had not happened.
  • Dr. Phil sometimes comes off as this in his show. Most people know that it's not okay to beat your children hourly or cheat on your wife with her sister and best friend.
    • Considering the people he deals with, apparently some people really think it's all right, and other have a twisted sense of morality. Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped.
  • Some roads in the American Southwest bear rather existential signs that say "Gusty Winds May Exist."
  • In 1954 Kurt Vonnegut was hired by the then-new magazine Sports Illustrated, which had hired some novelists in an attempt at greater literary credibility. His first assignment for SI was to write a piece about a racehorse that had jumped over the rail and ran across the infield after the starting pistol at Aqueduct Racetrack in New York City. After staring at a blank piece of paper all morning he finally left his office for good having typed one sentence: "The horse jumped over the fucking fence."
  • On the Toronto news station 680 News, an "expert" on the economy said, "I think the economy's going to stay pretty much the same, and if not it's either going to go up or down." ...Well, that's good to know.
  • During the 2003 NFL season, the CBS broadcaster made this comment about Quarterback Tom Brady of the New England Patriots: "If you give him enough time and open receivers, he's gonna be dangerous." Anyone up to (down to?), and maybe including, Ryan Leaf would be dangerous with those two things.
  • Gmail will occasionally tell you when flagging a message as important that it is "important because of the words in the message". As opposed to the Subtext of the message, perhaps.
    • Speaking of Google, their web browser, Google Chrome, has an "Incognito" function, which allows the user to open a separate window that is not recorded in the history. On the new tab page, it warns that it doesn't protect against:

"...People standing behind you"

  • American Civil War general William Sherman once said "War means fighting, and fighting means killing."
  • Watching TV or a movie with young children can be fun or irritating, depending on you, as you gain a free play-by-play announcer. "Did you see that?" they ask about the thing you just saw, and then describe the event you just saw no matter how you reply.
  • Anteaters eat ants.
  • US Army rocket launchers have the instruction "aim towards the enemy" written on them.
  • The 747's used to ferry Space Shuttles between locations when they were not in orbit had helpful instructions on the three large mounting pins where the Shuttles would be bolted on for the journey: "ATTACH SHUTTLE HERE. NOTE: BLACK SIDE DOWN."[1]
  • Less Wrong user Grognor advocates being Captain Obvious in Real Life here.

There is one more example beyond this line.[edit | hide]

This is the end of the article. There is nothing more for you to read on this page. Except for these links to similarly-themed pages. (We call them categories.) Oh, and by the way, you just read Captain Obvious trope! On All The Tropes! With your eyes! On a screen! (Probably!) Now you're really sick of the joke!

  1. The black side of a Space Shuttle is the underside, with the black high-temperature heat shield tiles; the only way to mount a Shuttle white side down would be to flip the entire orbiter upside down.