Tropedia

  • Before making a single edit, Tropedia EXPECTS our site policy and manual of style to be followed. Failure to do so may result in deletion of contributions and blocks of users who refuse to learn to do so. Our policies can be reviewed here.
  • All images MUST now have proper attribution, those who neglect to assign at least the "fair use" licensing to an image may have it deleted. All new pages should use the preloadable templates feature on the edit page to add the appropriate basic page markup. Pages that don't do this will be subject to deletion, with or without explanation.
  • All new trope pages will be made with the "Trope Workshop" found on the "Troper Tools" menu and worked on until they have at least three examples. The Trope workshop specific templates can then be removed and it will be regarded as a regular trope page after being moved to the Main namespace. THIS SHOULD BE WORKING NOW, REPORT ANY ISSUES TO Janna2000, SelfCloak or RRabbit42. DON'T MAKE PAGES MANUALLY UNLESS A TEMPLATE IS BROKEN, AND REPORT IT THAT IS THE CASE. PAGES WILL BE DELETED OTHERWISE IF THEY ARE MISSING BASIC MARKUP.

READ MORE

Tropedia
Advertisement
WikEd fancyquotes.pngQuotesBug-silk.pngHeadscratchersIcons-mini-icon extension.gifPlaying WithUseful NotesMagnifier.pngAnalysisPhoto link.pngImage LinksHaiku-wide-icon.pngHaikuLaconic

A character who has quit smoking or drinking keeps one, last unsmoked cigarette, or one last bottle to remind him of why he quit. May be a dare, a test where he can prove to himself that he has quit for good, a quitting device to prevent him from buying more, or a memento to remind him of what they were like before quitting.

Sometimes, if the character goes through a particular level of stress, but particularly if he is doomed, he may light up that last cigarette or swig from that last bottle. Especially if he's making a Heroic Sacrifice.

May also be a Chehkov's Gun.

Examples of Last Unsmoked Cigarette include:


Film

  • 1408: Mike Enslin keeps a last, unsmoked cigarette to remind him of why he quit. When he lights the room on fire and expects to die, he lights it up.
  • In the movie, The War of the Roses: Each spouse is trying to force the other out of the house while they are getting a divorce. Their (yes, they share one) divorce lawyer has a glass-framed last cigarette; he smashes it in while dealing with them.

Live Action Television

  • Murphy Brown: In the first episode (and through the first season) Murphy carried around one last cigarette.
  • Cheers: An episode focused on Sam's Lucky Bottle Cap. The cap from the last beer Sam drank before giving up drinking for good.

Literature

  • Discworld: Sam Vimes, who quit drinking a little while after meeting Sybil, keeps a drink in his desk drawer. Note that it's not good alcohol, and at least one adversary tries to trip him up by replacing it with some fine alcohol.

Real Life

  • After former Democratic Representative from Texas Charlie Wilson stopped drinking for health reasons, he still kept a single bottle around for a really special occasion. He consumed it upon the announcement that the Soviets were pulling out of Afghanistan (Giving aid to the rebels fighting there had been his goal for some time).

Western Animation

  • In The Venture Bros. episode "Dr. Quymn, Medicine Woman", the titular doctor wears a crystal necklace throughout the episode. We find out after she suffers an epileptic seizure and her home burns down that it's her last cigarette, which she proceeds to smoke to deal with the stresses of the evening.
Advertisement