• 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.


WikEd fancyquotes.pngQuotesBug-silk.pngHeadscratchersIcons-mini-icon extension.gifPlaying WithUseful NotesMagnifier.pngAnalysisPhoto link.pngImage LinksHaiku-wide-icon.pngHaikuLaconic
"The end will justify the means."

The Gordian Knot of Twist Endings.

When The Ending Changes Everything, it calls into question exactly how much of what you've seen was actually real. A charitable director (or one who wants to show off how clever the script is) might give you a Once More, with Clarity montage to help you work it out.

In other words, it one-ups Gainax Ending.

See also Unreliable Narrator. Less straightforward than All Just a Dream, and usually more confusing than Or Was It a Dream?. Compare Through the Eyes of Madness, which is a Mind Screw with similar effects (we can't be sure how much of what we're seeing is true) but accomplished in a different way. May be connected to a Kansas City Shuffle by one of the characters.


Examples of The Ending Changes Everything include:

Anime & Manga

  • In Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, we find out in Tsumihoroboshi-hen (the end of season 1) that the conspiratorial events of Onikakushi-hen (the beginning of season 1) were all in Keiichi's head, horribly twisted by the Hate Plague he was infected with. And then the second season comes along and cheerfully informs us that, while we have never been LIED to, we've just seen the action through the eyes of several different unreliable narrators.
    • Umineko no Naku Koro ni is even worse, in that several murders are shown to be committed via crazy, insane magical means, like demon robot bunny girls shooting seeking arrows of energy through keyholes to kill people in locked rooms. One major plot point is the main character trying to disprove those supernatural justification and find a human culprit.
    • Umineko Episodes 4 and 6, in particular, reveal that certain completely mundane-seeming scenes we've been shown in previous Episodes were in fact complete lies.
      • With Episode 8, most of what came before (specifically Episodes 3 thru 6) is revealed to be the result of amnesiac Battler trying to figure out what happened... maybe? Or was that not the truth as well...?
  • Death Note: Another Note. Naomi Misora is conscripted by L to solve a series of murders in Los Angeles. She's joined in her investigation by a mysterious young man with messy hair, white skin and bags under his eyes using the pseudonym "Ryuzaki" - must be L, right? The ending reveals the man is actually the murderer, Beyond Birthday, who is obsessed with L and modelled his appearance on him. This leads to a lot of Fridge Horror considering Naomi's interactions with him throughout the book.
  • Paranoia Agent begins with Tsukiko Sagi being attacked by a mysterious, baseball-bat-wielding assailant. The attacker, Shonen Bat, then begins to strike various other victims. Turns out that the first attack was faked by Tsukiko herself in order to relieve some of the pressure she was put under on her job. Unfortunately, Shonen Bat spread like a particularly violent meme, and it has a life of its own now...
  • Panty and Stocking With Garterbelt: "I'm a demon." That's Stocking, Panty's sister. Who then promptly slices Panty up into 666 pieces. Also, the Big Bad wasn't slain by the duo's Wave Motion Gun. The fandom reaction was... Severe.

Fan Fiction

  • The Star Trek: New Voyages episode "To Serve All My Days", which involves Chekov undergoing Rapid Aging to the point where he may have died, has a final scene at the end of the closing credits that may suggest that most of the episode was All Just a Dream.


  • Popularized, if not actually invented, by the film The Usual Suspects. (The Trope Maker is Rashomon, which inspired The Usual Suspects.) The film opens with an explosion on a ship, and the audience is informed that a suspect - Verbal Kint - is in police custody. From there, the A story divides its time between the suspect's interrogation and Flash Back dramatizations of what he tells his interrogator. Numerous details of the suspect's story are revealed at the end to have referred to random words and visual details visible to the suspect in the interrogation room, raising the question of how much, if any, of his story was true. In a case of Be Careful What You Wish For, his interrogator Kujan begins his questioning with a theory in mind, and the suspect cheerfully leads him astray by telling the questioner exactly what he's expecting to hear (he even lampshades that this is how police officers think, they find what they expect to find).
  • Matchstick Men. Obviously, most of the film is a con. But when did it start? How much of it was planned, how much improvised? And just how much affection do Frank and "Angela" have for Roy? The film suggests answers for some of those questions, but some of them we just have to guess about.
  • The 2003 movie Basic is a gigantic case of this, complete with multiple revisions and multiple suspects changing their stories and giving differing flashbacks along the way.
  • Memento ends this way, when it's revealed that Leonard killed his wife's rapist before any of the events of the movie, and not remembering this, has been killing criminals with similar names. The man he kills at the start of the film (actually the end of the shown story) is the dirty cop inducing him to do this, toward whom he himself had planted hints. Raising even more questions, the dirty cop claims that the actual rapist did not kill Leonard's wife, but she was accidentally killed by Leonard, after the real rapist's death, and Leonard's long term memory changed when she died.
    • It's implied she committed suicide because she couldn't deal with Leonard's amnesia.
  • French film Belle de Jour: a switch between reality and fantasy is usually indicated by a ringing bell, but there is much debate about how much of it is actually happening.
  • eXistenZ, about an extremely realistic virtual-reality experience that goes awry, takes the All Just a Dream ending and twists it until it snaps and becomes this.
  • The Jet Li movie Hero uses this trope to advance the story. Jet Li's character spends the first half of the movie explaining how he became a hero of the kingdom by defeating three dangerous assassins. The emperor, who actually held the assassins in very high regard, refuses to believe that Li's character was able to turn them against one another, and correctly guesses that Li's character is actually also an assassin who collaborated with the trio in order to get a private audience with the emperor.
  • Likewise the movie House of Flying Daggers. In its final half hour, each individual character reveals each other individual character, all of them in roles they hadn't seemed to fill for most of the movie. The only character, amusingly, who's been somewhat honest the whole way through, is the one who's supposed to be the one conning others.
  • The 2006 film Irresistible: You don't know if Mara (Emily Blunt) was in fact Sophie's (Susan Sarandon) prodigal daughter, or if she just stole the identity of her best friend Kate (who bears a closer resemblance to Sophie and her other daughters).
  • The 2003 French/American horror film High Tension (known as Switchblade Romance in the UK) uses this to disturbing Mind Screw effect. Marie is a severely unreliable narrator, and a Psycho Lesbian, and the killer. This WAS somewhat foreshadowed in the beginning (the dream about Marie chasing herself, with footage from later in the movie; Marie being mentioned as never having a boyfriend) but this is in the realm of Fridge Brilliance; to most people it seems like a totally random and jarring Ass Pull bordering on Gainax Ending, likely because it involves her in a car chase with herself using two vehicles. Maybe she drove furiously for 15 seconds, parked that car, then drove the other one furiously for 15 seconds, or maybe one car never existed. Either way, it's a lot of screen time devoted to promising audiences she was not the killer.
  • The film Murder By Death would be a competitor for "king of the trope" were it not for the fact that it's played for laughs by twisting its ending into a deliberately incomprehensible Moebius loop.
  • The Korean film A Tale of Two Sisters featured both an Unreliable Narrator and Real After All, leaving the viewer to wonder how much was truly supernatural, and how much was merely the delusions of the insane protagonist.
  • Another Korean film, Bloody Reunion, ends when we find out that the narrator is the murderer, and she made up the entire story, and all the bad things in the flashbacks actually happened to her, not the other guests.
  • Korean horror Dead Friend (also known as The Ghost) is played out as a generic horror flick, until the final scene where it is revealed the ghost who has been killing off Ji-won's (the main character's) friends IS in fact Ji-won. In a flashback it is shown that Ji-won had inadvertently caused the death of a girl before the movie began. The audience is led to believe this girl is the ghost and that she wants revenge. However, it is later revealed that she and Ji-won switched bodies just before the girl died, so the girl is actually the protagonist we have been following throughout the movie and Ji-won is the ghost.
  • The king of this type of twist would have to be the movie Wild Things, where pretty much all the characters were revealed in a series of twists to be allied with one another, then revealed in another series of twists to be secretly betraying one another. Even when the movie was over, the writers threw in several more twists during the closing credits just for fun.
  • David Mamet is well known for his big twists, which call into question large chunks of the previous plot.
    • In House Of Games, the heroine realizes that none of the cons in which she participated were real. They were all one giant con on her.
    • In State And Main, the main character perjures himself in court and instantly regrets it. It turns out that the whole court scene was just a play designed by the local love interest to give him a chance to rethink his choice before the real court case begins. The Simpsons parodied this scene, and Lisa admits that it's almost insultingly far-fetched.
    • In The Spanish Prisoner, Mamet returned to the topic of conmen. It turns out that most of what happened in the first half of the movie was an elaborate con, but even after the hero thinks the con is over, it's still going.
    • Redbelt tries this, though not as well as previous films. After suddenly being snubbed and ripped off by some Hollwood types, the main character desperately tries to figure out what's going on. He finally discovers that it's all about a laughably impossible scheme to fix Mixed Martial Arts matches.
  • David Lynch's Mulholland Drive. In a mind-screwy way, anyhow.
  • Rashomon, which inspired The Usual Suspects, is the Trope Maker.
  • Witness for the Prosecution follows Rashomon by just seven years and predates Suspects by almost forty.
  • Fight Club is another one of the films that set in motion the popularity of the perception altering twist in popular culture.
  • Primer. The second act of the film involves the use of very limited Time Travel; in the third act Abe learns that his friend Aaron has already used the time machine to change the past. So during the entire aforementioned second act, Aaron had actually been Aaron-from-a-week-in-the-future, manipulating current events for his own ends.
  • The plot of Reindeer Games is a series of more and more convoluted twists.
  • American Psycho leaves the reader/viewer unsure of how much of it was real and how much of it was fantasy.
  • The psychological thriller The Hole.
  • The Sixth Sense is a more conventional Twist Ending until you think about the implications.
  • Total Recall spends a lot of time questioning which parts of the plot and the hero's background are real, fake memories, or hallucinations. The film ends with a very strong suggestion that most of the plot was not real, though the truth is left ambiguous.
  • Inception is one of these, as the ending can be taken to mean the previous 5 minutes, or most or even all of the film may have been a dream.
    • The most frustrating part is that it isn't definitive either way; whether any of it is fake or real.
  • Lucky Number Slevin, in which it's revealed that the eponymous apparent patsy has planned out all the film's events thus far, working with the hitman who'd apparently been using him to play both ends against the middle.
  • In After.Life Liam Neeson plays a mortician named Elliot who claims to have the ability to speak to the dead. Throughout the movie, he talks to the main character (who is dead) in hopes of getting her to move on with her life. It turns out in the end that he was lying the whole time and that the main character was alive the whole time. However, there have been foreshadowing for both options on whether he was lying or not. With lots of those moments pointing towards the former. And one large hint that he has been doing it for a long time.
  • In Shutter Island, we learn at the end that the protagonist isn't a cop anymore; just a delusional mental patient. Everyone he's met, including his partner, has been playing along in the hope that it'll let him get over it and the apparent conspiracy was all in his mind. Not only that, but he killed his wife; it was this incident that caused his psychotic break and he's been blocking it out.
  • In the 2011 Unknown, Liam Neeson plays Dr. Martin Harris, a scientist who came to Berlin with his wife for a biotechnology conference. He gets in a car accident, wakes up in the hospital after a four-day coma and finds that another man has completely taken over his life. Harris' wife believes the other man, who seems to know everything Harris knows, is her husband. The Reveal is that Harris is a deep-cover assassin who was on a mission to kill someone at the conference, but now believes his own cover story as a result of the brain damage he suffered in the car accident: Harris' "wife" is actually his partner, and the other man was a backup assassin who took over the role of "Dr. Harris" when the protagonist disappeared.
    • And in the 2006 Unknown, the film's conclusion reveals that James Caviezel's character is actually an undercover cop, who had infiltrated the kidnapping ring and was about to bust them when a toxic gas rendered both kidnappers and kidnappees unconscious and amnesiac. And then the very last scene twists the twist, by revealing that he'd also been sleeping with the wife of the kidnapped millionaire, and had incited the rest of the criminal gang to abduct the man so he could murder him and set the gang up to take the fall.
  • In Psycho Beach Party it turns out it was all a dream in the main character's mind, that later got turned into a film where the main character then goes to kill some of the audience... so arguably you have to wonder when she got put away, who actually died, who was the actual murderer... and it raises so many questions.
  • Used to creative effect in this short film by Mathieu Ratthe "Lovefield" In the middle of a secluded cornfield a man appears to be finishing killing a woman off screen. Hurrying back to his truck, he grabs a towel and the audience presumes he's trying to cover up the body and perhaps dispose it in some way. Then just at the end the man says "It's a boy", and a newborn baby appears in view. The woman who sounded like she was dying was in fact in the midst of delivering a child and the blood was just the afterbirth.
  • Near the end of Identity, it's revealed that none of the people at the motel are real. They are only the figments of Malcolm Rivers' imagination, each of them a separate personality of his mind.
  • Four Dogs Playing Poker has four friends who had stolen a statuette find it has disappeared. They need to pay for it or be killed by the buyer- so they take out insurance policies on each other, and draw cards to see who will be the murderer and victim. But there's a twist...
  • Excessively used in the American remake of the horror movie "Silent House", after being chased around the house by a mysterious burly man, and her father and uncle get attacked by the man and taken away, she finds out from a woman who claims to be her child hood friend that her father and uncle used her and the main character in child pornagraphy and that the mysterious woman was the killer the whole time. Then it turns out the woman doesn't exist and that the main character was the killer. THEN, after killing her unrepentant father and sparing her repentant uncle, it turns out neither of them exist. Maybe?


  • Atonement by Ian McEwan is an odd example, in that Briony, the story's narrator, directly addresses the reader and says she had to give the story a Happy Ending to instead of letting them simply die, as happened in real life. This is actually the point of her book, since she hopes to atone for her actions that kept them apart by reuniting them in fiction.
  • Life of Pi by Yann Martel tells the story of a boy on a lifeboat after a shipwreck along with a fully-grown tiger and includes other bizarre occurrences. At the end he gives an alternate, somewhat more depressing but less fantastic version of events to the people he's telling the story too, leaving it to them (and us) to decide which to believe. The in-story listeners believe the story with the tiger.
  • Tim O'Brien uses a similar device several of his Vietnam War novels, notably Going After Cacciato and The Things They Carried.
  • The Thirteenth Tale is narrated by one of the characters. Near the end, she reveals that she's been combining two different people into one.
  • William Gibson's and Bruce Sterling's The Difference Engine has a fairly interesting twist of this kind, although it doesn't really call into question previous events so much as how the reader was perceiving them. The reader's point-of-view was the perspective of an AI in the Alternate History's future analyzing past events to learn how it came about. Everything - the titles of the chapters, the structure of the writing (which seems stilted, almost bureaucratic at times), the descriptions of the world - it all plays into it.
  • G. K. Chesterton's short poem The Donkey is clearly about what a ridiculous and laughable creature the donkey is... until the very last line completely overthrows all of the imagery that has come before it.
  • In Ian R. MacLeod's short story "The Camping Wainwrights," the father of the titular family is established as a sociopathic subtle abuser who does bizarre things like breaking the family's possessions for no reason, keeping his wife and children miserable and terrified. At the end, he gets what he deserves. Then it is revealed that the narrator's sister performed at least one of the mysterious acts of cruelty that were blamed on the father, raising the possibility that he may have been an innocent scapegoat of the family's general dysfunction.
  • In The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie, the narrator himself is the murderer and he has been hiding that the entire time. He also points out how clever and careful he acted and wrote this all down which serves as a Once More, with Clarity moment. What's notable about this is that he never actually lies, he just leaves out some important parts in his written account of the events. Of course, Hercule Poirot noticed those, but the reader probably didn't.
  • Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency is built around this, in a Mind Screw sort of way. Let's just say when we say it changes everything, we mean it.
  • An Occurrence At Owl Creek Bridge is a short story that manages this. It's pretty easy to find and not very long. Go check it out.
  • Odd Thomas throws a twist in the last few pages that negates the previous few chapters, or at least our interpretations of them. His girlfriend Stormy was actually a ghost, having died in an explosion, and the interactions he'd had with her were wishful thinking on his part.

Live-Action TV

  • The final scene of the final episode of St Elsewhere showed such a radically different interpretation of the major characters it opens the possibility that the entire series was an in-story delusion. One series writer deduced through Canon Welding that "90% of all television" is a subplot of a St. Elsewhere episode.
  • One particularly impressive example is the CSI episode "Got Murder?". After finding that a dismembered body belongs to the estranged ex-wife of a man who had been accused of her murder several years earlier, the investigators discover that that man's daughter is pregnant, and find evidence that he was molesting her. Just as their case starts to look watertight — that he killed his wife when she returned to find him in bed with their daughter — the truth comes out: it's just a hysterical pregnancy. The daughter killed her mom for threatening her fantasy life. Dad had no idea what the heck was going on.
    • Another episode ends with the perp(?) delivering this immortal line - "I swear to God it's the truth... even if it never happened."[1]
  • Nowhere Man, an early UPN drama, was about a man who was UnPersoned over a compromising photograph of U.S. Soldiers executing Third World peasants. He traveled the country trying to unravel the conspiracy that was behind his erasure and reclaim his old life. After twenty-odd episodes of Mind Screw and conflicting explanations about why the photo was important, the finale closed with The Reveal that his old life never existed. He was really a government agent that had been captured by the conspiracy and implanted with false memories, and his entire cross-country odyssey had been a test of how much of the lie he would believe. This may have been intended to lead into a second season, but it was never produced.
  • In all places, the family sitcom Yes, Dear. An episode revolves around the lead character Greg's reluctant attendance at a therapy session. The episode consists of flashbacks to elements of his life that have scarred him in the present day. At the end of the session, right after he leaves, the psychologist (played by Michael Boatman) comes to a realization that the whole thing was a trick. The ending features an Affectionate Parody of The Usual Suspects as he drops his cup of coffee in shock, and the camera cuts to a limping Greg gradually walking normally (his leg had fallen asleep).
  • The final episode of Roseanne, in which it's revealed that all of the show's characters are simply altered versions of the real people in Roseanne's life.
    • And further that a number of key events and facts were altered... including that the 'real' Roseanne's husband died of the heart attack Dan survived.
  • Derren Brown's The Seance is about a seance involving 12 medical students who committed suicide. The volunteers "make contact" with a young woman named Jane, complete with video and evidence confirming the things stated by the volunteer-turned medium. At the end, Derren explains some of what happened, asks the volunteers to wait, and walks outside. He reaches "Jane" in the van, perfectly alive, and calls her inside to meet the volunteers. The only thing missing is a rimshot. A good deal of Brown's specials have something like this.
  • The final 2 episodes of Season 4 of Breaking Bad are completely changed by a close up shot.
  • Parodied on Saturday Night Live with Kevin Spacey as host (in an obvious reference to the end of The Usual Suspects). Andy Samberg was late to rehearsals and Spacey starts to give him a verbal beating, only for Samberg to relate a long and complicated story that explains his tardiness including meeting up with Radiohead and having to confront one of those human statues who wore gold paint. Spacey forgives him and lets him go, only to turn around and see elements of the story on his back wall. Radiohead came from a mannequin head on top of a radio and the gold painted human statue was a picture of Spacey with his Oscar. It then went a step further, showing an entire line of items and symbols that spells out an entire sentence Pictionary-style.
  • The 100th Episode of The Big Bang Theory plays this way. The episode starts off with an homage to the pilot with Leonard seeing Penny across the hallway and instinctively asks her out, being almost two years since they broke up. Most of the episode was then about the various pitfalls reinforcing why they had such a hard time dating in the first place, with Leonard admitting every scenario for them inside his head ends badly and Penny telling him he overthinks things. The episode then jumps back to the first scene in the hallway, the episode being him contemplating whether her should ask her out again. Despite the "bad ending" he imagined he decided to do it anyway and the episode ends by contrasting real life with his imagination, proving that his imagined scenario may not be the end outcome.


  • The opera The Golden Cockerel has a Downer Ending followed by an epilogue which suggests that only a couple of the characters were real.


  • Braid's story is allegorical and, while open to interpretation, is seemingly about a man trying to salvage the relationship with the love of his life. The last level features Tim and the Princess running from a knight who is seemingly out to steal her from him. At the end of the level you then rewind time - revealing that you were actually seeing the events in reverse, and that the knight was trying to save her from the obsessed Tim. The extremely well-hidden secret ending offers a few more clues about the plot: while still open to interpretation, the game is seemingly an allegory for the development of nuclear weapons. Tim is a scientist, and the Princess is the split atom. Word of God says that it is up to the reader to decide what the story is really about.
  • Metal Gear Solid 2 Sons of Liberty ends in a gigantic Gainax Ending, the idea being that the player reason out how much of the plot was real or not (to fit in with the game's Aesop that the inability to interpret things for yourself is very bad). It probably overdid it a bit.
    • See Metal Gear Solid 2 Sons of Liberty/Recap
    • Also the Ending of Metal Gear Solid 3: After having defeated the Big Bad, killed his traitorous mentor, averted World War 3, recovered the secret microchip, and retreating to a remote hut with the triple agent love interest, Snake wakes up the next morning to only find a tape record explaining that said love interest was a quadruple agent who was supposed to murder him and would have done so, but being unable to refuse the last wish of his mentor he killed who wasn't really a traitor but was chosen as the Fall Girl to give her life to cover up an even greater government conspiracy. And she also stole the microchip while he was asleep. Not that the last part would make a difference, since another quadruple agent had switched the real chip for a fake one.
  • The worst ending of Silent Hill has it reveal that the entire game is a dying dream of Harry's, who died in the car crash at the beginning of the introduction.
  • At the End of Silent Hill: Shattered Memories it's revealed that the player has been controlling a fantasy version of protagonist Harry Mason, created by his daughter Cheryl to cope with his sudden death years before. This would seem to imply that the entire game is taking place in her head, but several throw-away events scattered throughout could be taken to imply that Cheryl's fantasy is somehow interacting with the real world. Ultimately the player is left unsure as to how much, if any, of the game's previous events really took place, or whether any of the people Harry meets on his journey actually existed.
  • Similarly, the ending of Silent Hill: Downpour has the reveal of whether or not Murphy killed his mentor, and the worst ending revealed that he killed his son as well. That dramatically changes the entire game beforehand, where you believe that the child molester Murphy hunted down was responsible.
  • Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge also ends in a massive confusing Gainax ending. The game is a pirate story set in the Caribbean. When it seems that protagonist Guybrush Threepwood has found the treasure Big Whoop, which allegedly can help him escape to another world from zombie pirate LeChuck, he falls down a massive rift. After switching on an electric light in a modern-looking tunnel system, he is confronted by LeChuck, who seemingly was inside the now smashed treasure chest. LeChuck reveals that they are brothers and tries to send him to a dimension of infinite pain with a special voodoo doll, but it just sends him in the next room instead. Guybrush explores the tunnels and finds the skeletons of his dead parents and a ticket with an "E" on it in the remains of the treasure chest. When Guybrush manages to defeat LeChuck, he pulls his face (now claimed to be a mask) off and recognises him as Chuckie, his long-lost brother. Chuckie explains that he was sent by their mother to look for Guybrush, and they find themselves as children at an amusement park with their angry parents. The park closely resembles an area earlier in the game, and there is a big sign saying "Big Whoop". When the reunited family walks off, Chuckie looks at the camera with a demonic gaze, and the credits roll. In The Stinger, Guybrush's love interest Elaine Marley looks down at the chasm, wondering if LeChuck put some spell on Guybrush. What was real, what was not? Many theories have been made:
    • Is Guybrush just a little boy dreaming of being a pirate? In that case, all that happened up to this point was just the imagination of a kid.
    • Was the "child in an amusement park" part a trick by LeChuck, an effort to trap Guybrush in a Lotus Eater Machine?
    • Did Guybrush somehow trigger Big Whoop and end up in another world? Was it when he fell down the chasm?
      • The third game in the series seems to indicate that the second theory is true. Note, however, that the third game wasn’t made by original creator Ron Gilbert. We still don’t know what his plans for Monkey Island 3 were.
  • Final Fantasy XIII-2. It turns out that actually You Can't Fight Fate. Everything you did during the game just furthered the villain's plans, in the end he succeeds in his plan to destroy time itself, and there's literally nothing you can do about it. In fact, for Hundred-Percent Completion, you get a scene from the villain, mocking the player for trying to find a way out of the trap. As he points out, every timeline ends with Etro dying, time itself collapsing in a Time Crash, and his plans coming to fruition — only the fine details change. And since he can see the entirety of the timeline, he knew this the whole time. There are some Sequel Hooks (for planned DLC expansions)... but for the first time in the series' history, The Bad Guy Wins.

Western Animation


 Mr. Smith: "A casino where I'm winning? That car musta killed me. I must be in Heaven! [He plays again and wins again.] A casino where I always win? That's boring. I must really be ... IN HELL!"

Sebastian Cabot: "No, Mr. Smith. You're not in Heaven or Hell. You're on an airplane."

Mr. Smith: [turns and sees a creature destroying the plane's wing] "There's a gremlin destroying the plane! You've gotta believe me!"

Sebastian Cabot: "Why should I believe you? You're Hitler!"

Mr. Smith/Hitler: "Noooooo! Eva Braun! Help me!"

Eva takes off her facemask, revealing she is a human-fly.

Mr. Smith screams

Bender: Saw it comin'.

  • There's a Hey Arnold episode where Sid thinks Stinky is a vampire and at the end he turns out to be right. This has no impact on the rest of the show.
  1. Which, it should be noted, is a Shout-Out to One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.