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  • Clint Malarchuk get's his throat cut, then a happy song comes up.
  • Happens often in American Football commentary. A player will hit another one really quite hard, and the commentators will hoot and holler about it, with phrases like 'Wow, what a great hit!' 'He almost took his head clean off!' till they realise that the player who was hit isn't moving, and the medics are coming on to the field. Suddenly, they start speaking quietly, with phrases such as 'of course our thoughts are with (Player X) and his family at this time'

  Howard Cosell: Yes, we have to say it. Remember, this is just a football game, no matter who wins or loses... An unspeakable tragedy, referred to us by ABC News in New York City. John Lennon, outside of his apartment building on the West Side of New York City, the most famous, perhaps, of all of The Beatles, shot twice in the back, rushed to Roosevelt Hospital, DEAD ON ARRIVAL.

    • Interestingly, soccer and rugby commentators don't go to either extreme: we get "well, that was a messy tackle", followed by "well, I hope he'll be OK" as the messy tackle's recipient gets stretchered off and "I think he deserved that" as its perpetrator gets sent off.
    • For those who aren't familiar with American Football, the players are heavily armored.
      • Well, it's plastic and not all that thick except on the shoulders. It doesn't protect against breaks much (there are a lot of broken limbs and shattered knees), and the plates bend too much to fully distribute impacts.
      • And, given the recent attention paid to concussions occurring after particularly vicious hits to the head, one common line of thought that's emerging is that one particular piece of "armor"--the helmet in particular--has effectively become weaponized by certain players, making the hits more dangerous than if the players didn't have helmets at all.
  • Overheard has a number of examples.
  • This news clip. Aww, lookit the cute squirrel! - Now, on a serious note...
  • The Eighth Annual New Hampshire Theater Awards. What was on after the intense, Kill'Em All Battle of Agincourt? 'We Beseech Thee' from Godspell.
  • On 6 July 2005 it was announced that London would host the 2012 Olympic games. The media and city of London celebrated. The next day, three terrorist bombings in London killed 56 civilians and caused widespread panic and despair.
  • Depending on which show you watch, the commercial break can be a Mood Whiplash. Have you ever watched a TV show covering an eerie subject matter (In Search Of..., Lost Tapes, etc.), and then when the commercial break starts, the first ad that comes on is light and cheerful? It can feel pretty weird.
    • "Stay tuned for scenes from our next episode" can have this effect as well, depending on the show and whoever is saying it. For example, after a particularly gory and somber episode of Criminal Minds, Matthew Gray Gubler delivers the message in his usual cheerful chirp.
    • On the other hand, "Hi, I'm Sarah Mc Lachlan, and I'm about to ruin your whole day."
  • Done deliberately by John Cleese at fellow Monty Python member Graham Chapman's memorial service, in which he goes from a typical recitation of what a great man the deceased was, to slating him as a freeloader who should burn in hell. Justified, according to Cleese, because Chapman "would never forgive me if I didn't."
  • Take a baby. Add The Michigan Fight Song. Stir. And here is what you get.
  • The success of the charming movie My Neighbor Totoro helped Studio Ghibli recover from the initial non-success of the movie it had been double-featured with... Grave of the Fireflies .
  • The Great Depression, one second your life is great, everyone is rich from the stock market, life is great, then one second later... your stocks crash and you lose A LOT of money, then it gets worse...
    • If you were a stock owner, that is. The Depression did not work like it's often portrayed, at least not for the average person, it was not a situation of everyone being affluent and then lining up at soup kitchens the day after the crash. It was a slow process that began before the stock market crash, and did not really take full effect until June of 1932. The market actually recovered in April 1930 and people were doing reasonably well even through 1931 and early 32. Even with the stock market, signs were there for a month and a half before the crash. So it was hardly a WHAM moment in history.
  • The entire idea behind the BBC's "Comic Relief" charity event. Comedians join together to create a great many shows, all focused around gaining money for various charities, often to do with starving children. 2011 featured David Walliams doing a 24 hour Panel show run, and lcips were shown, interspered with David Tennant (The 10th Doctor) and others visiting Malaria-infected five year olds.
  • Anytime a program is interruped by a news bulletin involving some calamity or, even worse, an "Emergency Alert Notification" of the style of the old Conelrad and Emergency Broadcast System, which anyone over the age of 40 was conditioned to treat as a warning of imminent nuclear attack. Which is why blood pressures go up in some people whenever the same warning signal is used for amber alerts and thunderstorms.
  • In 24 hour news channels, strange news segment juxtapositions cause this, whether it is due to bad editing procedures or not. In Cti news reporting of the 2012 Bhoja Air Flight 213 airplane crash was followed straight by reports of pet cafes in Japan.
  • If you have sufficiently varied taste in music, set your iPod or mp3 player to shuffle... guaranteed mood whiplash at some point.
  • College day 1: You enter college. You meet your teachers and new friends. College day 2: More introduction, some guy runs around in an initiation. Day 3: A student's body has been found behind the school.
  • This 1997 clip from the Irish chat show The Late Late Show. From thousands of entries for a postal quiz, the name chosen at random turns out to be a recently bereaved mother. Straight from levity and laughter to "My daughter died last night." In fairness to him, Gay Byrne handles it beautifully.