Speak in Unison

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Quite a mouth(s)ful.


Multiple characters say the same thing, at the same time.

The Creepy Monotone this naturally creates make this a favourite characteristic of the Hive Mind (especially ones linked psychically), Creepy Twins and people under Mass Hypnosis. It also turns up when reciting Badass Boasts or other well-known texts, where it's intended to show unity, strength in numbers, and discipline. A common enough joke is mixing this with an Expospeak Gag (especially coincidentally).

Comics demonstrate this by drawing a Speech Bubble with two or more tails leading to the speakers.

Taken for granted in musicals, where it happens constantly during Crowd Songs and duets.

Also common is the comedic Subversion; Two characters attempt to do this, but fall out of sync or mess up their lines. Bonus points if they then argue about who was supposed to say what, or about how one isn't sticking to the plan, or if they Lampshade that speaking in unison is more trouble than it's worth. This particular variant also can show up with Finishing Each Other's Sentences and similar tropes.

Compare Voice of the Legion, where one character speaks with the voice of many, and I Say What I Say, where two people say the same thing because they're the same person (transplanted in time or from alternate universes). See also Finishing Each Other's Sentences, Finish Dialogue in Unison.

Examples of Speak in Unison include:


Anime and Manga

  • Happens frequently for comedic effect in various series where multiple individuals react to something going on; One Piece is a repeat offender in this department.


Comic Books


Film

Ted Striker: It's an entirely different kind of flying, altogether!
Other cast members: [All together] It's an entirely different kind of flying.


Literature

  • Alice Through the Looking Glass has Alice boarding a train whose passengers, apart from Alice herself and the character she was conversing with, all keep remarking on the subject of the conversation in unison (and, at one point, thinking in unison).
  • In the Warrior Cats series, StarClan is described as sounding like every cat Firestar has ever known, all speaking at once in one clear voice.


Live Action TV

  • "WE ARE THE BORG. You Will Be Assimilated. Resistance Is Futile."
  • Whose Line Is It Anyway has a whole game involving this, aptly titled All In One Voice.
  • We! Are! Coming!
  • The Ood do this in the Doctor Who two-parter "The Impossible Planet" and "The Satan Pit", while possessed by Satan (or whatever it was), complete with glowing red Mind Control Eyes.
    • Also the monster in "Midnight," which possesses a woman, starts repeating everything the other characters say, catches up and speaks in unison with them for the bulk of the episode, before eventually picking only the Doctor and forcing him to repeat after her, giving the impression that he's now the monster and goading the other characters to kill him.
  • In The Twilight Zone episode "The Obsolete Man," a man condemned to death for holding an outlawed vocation (librarian) and prohibited beliefs (religion) is met with the chant "Obsolete!" at his sentencing; in the end, so is the judge who sentenced him.
  • Super Sentai and Power Rangers have its heroes doing this a lot.
  • Subverted on one occasion on the Japanese game show DERO! - after a team of 4 players was presented with a multiple choice question with 4 choices, the team leader suggested that everyone should, on his mark, say the answer they think is correct at the same time (so as to avoid having the first person to speak influence everyone else). At the exact same time, all 4 members each said a different answer. The show had to add simultaneous subtitles for all 4 members in post-production.
  • Babylon 5 has John Sheridan and Susan Ivanova do this on occasion. In their case, it's a demonstration of the fact that the two are old and close friends.
  • Supernatural episode "Mystery Spot" features this Crowning Moment of Funny:

Dean: You don't know everything.
Sam: Yeah, I do.
Dean & Sam: Yeah, right. - Nice guess.
Sam: It wasn't a guess.
Dean & Sam: Right, you're a mind reader.
Dean & Sam: Cut it out, Sam!
Dean & Sam: Sam!
Dean & Sam: You think you're being funny, but you're being really, really childish!
Dean & Sam: Sam Winchester wears makeup!
Dean & Sam: Sam Winchester cries his way through sex!
Dean & Sam: Sam Winchester keeps a ruler by the bed and every morning when he wakes up... okay, enough!


Theatre

  • Lampshaded in The Importance of Being Earnest. To show their solidarity, Gwendolen and Cecily decide to voice their displeasure with their fiancés in unison. Gwendolen even keeps time with her finger to make sure that they stay in sync with each other. Then Jack and Algernon reply in perfect unison, completely unrehearsed.
  • In The Pirates of Penzance, the policemen chant in monotone during their conversation with Mabel after Frederick's Face Heel Turn.


Video Games

  • The Japanese audio for Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories comically subverts this with the Prism Rangers' battle cry, where all 7 of them shout the same cry but completely out of sync. Prism Orange in particular finishes about half a second after everyone else.
  • Rose's twin daughters in Mystery Case Files: Return to Ravenhearst and Escape from Ravenhearst speak in unison. Justified in that the twins are played by a single person, duplicated in post-production.


Webcomics


Western Animation

  • Mass Hypnosis example from The Simpsons: "You are watching FOX!" "We are watching FOX."
    • Another Mass Hypnosis example from the Simpsons, 8F13, "Homer at the Bat" (parodying The Natural):

Hypnotist: You are all very good players.
Team: We are all very good players.
Hypnotist: You will beat Shelbyville.
Team: We will beat Shelbyville.
Hypnotist: You will give 110 percent.
Team: That's impossible. No one can give more than 100 percent. By definition, that is the most anyone can give.

    • "Don't push your luck! Don't push your luck!"
    • "Someone else, someone else!" "I'm someone else!" "Hey he's right!"
    • After Lisa convinces the town to recycle in "The Old Man and The Lisa" only to stop them later on as they're helping Mr. Burns.

Townspeople: Stop. You can't mix plastic with paper!

Mr. Lynch: Who are we going to beat?
Class: The fourth graders.
Mr. Lynch: That's good, and it's good to speak in unison. What are we speaking in?
Class: Unison.

Spike: That sounded like the worst night ever.
Twilight and Friends: It WAS! *laughs*

    • And in The Last Roundup, Applejack has just driven her stagecoach past a train, just barely beating it.

Coach pullers: Lady, you're trouble. *exeunt*

Mystery Inc. captures the Monster of the Week, followed by a Dramatic Unmask.
All: *GASP* Name of the villain!
Villain: Yes it's me! And I would have gotten away with it, if it weren't for those meddling kids!

  • On Family Guy, when Lois tells the family that it's time for spring cleaning.
  • Hector Heathcote, an obsure Terrytoons character from the early 60s, had an episode titled "Pig In A Poke," where he and his dog Winston are to meet Lewis and Clark and assist in facilitating the Louisiana Purchase. The real Lewis and Clark (whom the evil Benedict and his stooge who posed as in an attempt to thwart the Purchase) show up, and they both speak in unison.


Real Life

  • Any time you have a large crowd reciting a well-known text: In church, with prayers; any time Americans swear the Pledge of Allegiance; the national anthem of any country; rock concerts, war cries, etc.