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"Mr. President, are you suggesting we blow up the moon?"
—Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me
It's bad enough when some bad guy tries to put his John Hancock into the moon, it becomes really serious when it's destroyed. This happens in many continuities in many shows many times. Think of an Earthshattering Kaboom, only on the moon.
Something that is only occasionally referenced is that a satellite body does affect the surface of the parent object. Destroying or otherwise removing the moon from it's orbit would cause serious trouble.
- A 7-Up commercial had the spokesman attempt to project the 7-Up logo onto the moon with a laser. Unfortunately, the laser was a little too powerful, and... well, boom.
Orlando Jones: OK! Who had been messing with my laser?!
- Cowboy Bebop has this as a background event, where the destruction of the moon in a gate research accident drove the bulk of humanity to colonize the rest of the Solar System. Earth itself is largely a wasteland now.
- Notably, No Endor Holocaust is largely averted here: The initial shockwave devastated the portion of Earth facing the moon and debris continues to rain down on the damaged landscape. Meteor showers are treated like a weather event by the survivors who live in underground bunkers. The surface can't even be mapped due to the constant creation of new impact craters.
- Dragonball Z
- Piccolo destroying the moon to stop Gohan from rampaging as a giant ape (the moon is the giant ape form's power source).
- Dragonball Z Abridged parodies Piccolo's moon destruction via a news report detailing an estimated death toll of over 100 million due to the lack of moon to regulate the tides, not to mention all waterbenders losing their power and Sailor Moon being in horrible agony.
- Master Roshi also blew up the moon in Dragon Ball before it was put back into place some years later. He got yelled at afterwards, but he, like Piccolo only did it to stop a giant monkey attack (it was restored by Kami between those two times on the condition that Goku had his tail removed).
- This happens some times in Dr. Slump, it being a gag manga with no realism at all. Usually it's Arale who destroys the Moon with her Super Strength, by chucking boulders at it. Afterwards we see the Moon all patched up, like a broken vase.
- In Ouran High School Host Club, this is shown going on inside Tamaki's head in Episode 23 as a metaphor for his Berserk Button of Haruhi being pursued by another guy, the unsuspecting Kasanoda.
- A test of the Von Braun's Tandem Mirror engine in Planetes reduced a significant area of the Moon into dust. Judging from the artwork, the damage covered a region larger than the state of California.
- Z does this in Tenchi Muyo!, after he destroyed half the earth, for no other purpose than getting Tenchi's attention.
- In the manga of Akira, Tetsuo teleports to the moon and blasts a huge hole in it.
- In Fairy Tail, a village asks the heroes to destroy the moon, which has turned purple and started turning the villagers into demons at night. Subverted, as they only had to remove the aftermath of a ritual that took place on the island, which made the moon look purple and messed with the memories of the villagers, who really were demons to begin with.
- In Star Blazers, the Comet Empire, after defeating Earth's space navy, puts the cherry on its sundae of conquest by destroying the moon.
- In Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, Anti-Spiral uses the moon to attempt to destroy the earth, causing the Gurren Brigade to attempt to destroy the moon. Notable in that the otherwise VERY soft sci-fi makes it abundantly clear that the approach of the moon and it's removal would have a negative effect on the planet.
- Origin: Spirits of the Past uses this trope, though instead of the moon being completely destroyed it's just split into tree.
- In Yu-Gi-Oh!, Yugi has one of his monsters stab the moon to destroy it. Yes, it was a moon generated by another card and not the actual moon, but it still has the tide-changing effects...and it wasn't a monster card so he shouldn't have been able to attack it.
- The Doctor Who comic strip "The Love Invasion" featured an alien who intended to improve the lives of the human race and his (in the long run) with the first item on his agenda being "destroy the moon". He nearly goes through with it.
- The moon of the planet Sakaar (from Planet Hulk) is broken into pieces.
- In a What If? story about the Avengers' enemy Korvac, Korvac and the Stranger become involved in a shoving match, with the moon itself as the object being shoved. The moon, behaving at least somewhat according to the laws of physics, gets ripped to shreds by tidal forces and forms a debris ring around the Earth. There is No Endor Holocaust, but it doesn't matter because Korvac ends the universe with the Ultimate Nullifier.
- The moon gets destroyed in the "Five Years Later" period of Legion of Super-Heroes. In this case there is an Endor Holocaust, with lunar fragments being a serious threat to Earth for some time afterwards (until Earth got destroyed as well).
- This happens in the somewhat distant future in the 2002 film of The Time Machine, when some genius decided that using nuclear weapons to dig caverns beneath the surface was a good idea. It causes a bit of an armageddon. The moon's still there despite their effort, but only about half or so is intact, the rest having settled into orbit or hit the Earth.
- The Moon inexplicably combusts in Amazon Women on the Moon, with a small piece continuing to dangle from a wire, after the first astronauts to visit it incur the wrath of the Amazons living there.
- Flash Gordon (1980), Ming pokes the moon out of orbit so it is sent on a collision course with Earth.
- Varied in the 2000s Avengers feature film, when Iron Man launches a super-explosive into the Chitauri's world, and the explosion breaks their moon in half.
- The Army of Mars nuked the moon in Kurt Vonnegut's The Sirens of Titan
- In the Star Wars Expanded Universe, at one point a prototype Death Star aims at the planet Kessel, misses, and blows up its moon instead. Mako Spince was expelled from the Imperial Military Academy when he attempted to blow the Imperial seal off one of Carida's moons as a joke but used too much antimatter.
- In Perelandra and That Hideous Strength, it is stated that when, on the World Half Empty Moon, the people's wickedness is complete, it will be shattered.
- In one of Stephen Baxter's more nonsensical stories, the US government executes "operation Sunday Punch" to blow a huge chunk out of the moon, in order to intimidate the other nations of the world. It doesn't end well.
- The Cthulhu Mythos short story "Remnants" by Fred Chappell has the Old Ones destroying and re-engineering the Moon into a giant five-pointed star for their own arcane purposes.
- In the novel Moonfall by Jack McDevitt the moon is smashed into itty-bitty bits by a mysterious giant comet just days after a commercial moonbase has been built there.
- The novel Die dunkle Seite des Mondes (The Dark Side of the Moon) of the Charity series by Wolfgang Hohlbein ends with the Moon being shattered by a massive hyperspace wave, as a result of something that was done in one of the previous novels in the series. Considering the wave was about to do the same to Earth, the destruction of the Moon is considerably more preferable. One of the characters mentions that humans will have to learn to live without the tides, while another character points out that the tides will still be there, as the main mass of the moon is still in orbit.
- In Incarceron, it's mentioned that the Years of Rage have taken their toll on the moon. It still appears to be in orbit, but its innards have been hollowed and its face is pockmarked, effectively killing the tides.
- Happens offscreen between the first and second Empire From the Ashes books. Fortunately, it is replaced with a gravity generator to avoid problems with tides.
Live Action TV
- The ABC Family dramady, Three Moons Over Milford, in which the moon was shattered into three pieces by an asteroid, leaving people uncertain about the future of life on Earth.
- Inverted in Space: 1999 where the Moon gets blasted into space but survives more or less intact, but the Earth suffers devastating effects from the loss of their tide-control device.
- In a later episode it's revealed that the Earth survived, but humanity screwed the environment anyway.
- On Mr. Show, there's a sketch wherein America inexplicably decides to blow up the moon and is met with huge approval, with people writing patriotic country songs and throwing parties in honor of the event. When the monkey assigned to guide the missile that will blow up the moon asks (via sign language) why they're doing it, America erupts into controversy, until the monkey is fired and the destruction of the moon goes through as planned.
- From the TV-series version of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, a description of the songs of the rock group Disaster Area: "[They] are, on the whole, very simple and usually follow the familiar theme of boy-being meets girl-being beneath a silvery moon which then explodes for no adequately explored reason."
- On The Big Bang Theory The guys are bouncing a laser off the moon to see if it's viewable from Earth and Penny's dim-witted date is worried the moon will blow up. Leonard reassures him that they set the laser to stun.
- In Sonic Adventure 2, Eggman blows up half of the moon with the Eclipse Cannon to show the world he's not messing around when he announces he's conquering the world. Fans have all sorts of theories why the moon seems none the worse for the wear in all following games, including one where the final battle happens on the surface.
- In Skies of Arcadia, the six Moons bombarding the planet with meteors plays an important role in the game's backstory. More ridiculously, there's an Limit Break that allows you to smash one of them into the enemy... naturally, this is ignored once the battle's over.
- The end of Kirbys Adventure sees the pink guy fly after Nightmare, eventually ending up on the moon's surface. Before the battle, the moon is whole; after the battle, it becomes permanently crescent, which is retained for every subsequent game in the series.
- Happens with every casting of Fei's Big Bang spell in Xenogears. Also an example of Slap-On-The-Wrist Nuke.
- Zetta's Zetta Beeeam Neo attack in Disgaea 4: A Promise Unforgotten causes the Netherworld's moon and the asteroid belt near it to detonate in a glorious screen-filling explosion with every use.
- In Rogue Trip you can use a teleporter on the flying saucer level to warp to the moon. If you placed a remote bomb at the crashed saucer and blew it up from the moon, the earth would explode, shortly followed by a hail of flaming rocks that destroys the moon and kills you. And all that for a cheap vacation.
- In Shattered Horizon, a mining accident on the moon has caused billions of tons of rocky debris and mining equipment to be thrown out in orbit around earth, essentially leaving a huge hole in the moon, as well as a ring of rocks and debris around the earth.
- While it doesn't happen in-game in Team Fortress 2, Saxton Hale accidentally blows up the moon in the Mac update comic. Using an Apple product called iBlewUpTheMoon.
- In Blaz Blue, Makoto Nanaya's Astral Finish ends with her uppercutting her opponent into the sky. The force of the punch makes him hit the moon and shatter it.
- In the Lost Episdoe 2 of Asura's Wrath, Oni Punches Mantra Asura so hard the moon splits in half, and they start blowing up more of it as they start fighting more.
- The only way to kill a mockingbird was by HITTING IT WITH THE MOON!!!!
- Real Life Comics questions if NASA only wanted pictures when crashing things into the moon.
- In Homestuck, Jack Noir does this to Prospit's (inhabited) moon. Technically, he only broke the chain connecting it to Prospit and crashed it into Skaia, but the idea is the same.
- In Darths and Droids, Naboo's moon is destroyed in order to interfere with the Gungans' battle tactics.
- Tech Infantry has the Moon blown up in order to have the broken pieces rain down upon the Earth and make in uninhabitable.
- In Colour My Dreams, you need to do this after solving a puzzle to get past the endless hallway.
- The now-defunct Citizens' Association to Blow Up the Moon. CABUM
- Frank J. Fleming of the blog IMAO, advocates the United States Nuking the Moon to convince other coutries that the U.S. is crazy and not to be messed with.
- Aliens destroyed the moon in The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy and repaired it with their armpit cheese.
- In the Looney Tunes cartoon "Haredevil Hare", Marvin the Martian attempts to blow up the Earth from the Moon, but ends up blowing the Moon in half instead, leaving only a crumbling crescent.
- Thundarr the Barbarian, where the rogue planet that causes The End of the World as We Know It in the Opening Narration also splits the moon in half, and the shattered remnants can be occasionally seen in the night sky during episodes.
- Almost happens in Avatar: The Last Airbender, when Zhao plots to kill the moon spirit. It's not clear if the moon was physically destroyed/wiped from existence, but at the very least he got it to stop reflecting light, and nullified (some of) its gravity. Somewhat averts No Endor Holocaust in that they make it clear the moon's death would be a very bad thing. As it stands, however, all it did was force a Heroic Sacrifice to fix the moon and create one very pissed off ocean spirit kaiju.
- Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: "Wirewolf" Booster and Mira flew Star Cruister 42 into the moon, blowing it up so as to revert Wirewolf back to Ty Parsec.
- Coop once blew up part of the moon in Megas XLR "Don't Tell Mom the Babysitters Coop", which caused major climate change (a subversion of No Endor Holocaust). When asked if was concerned about this, he replied, "What does that have to do with bubblegum ice cream?" Kiva made him fix it in the credits. The episode basically told you from the start what was going to happen: in Kiva's time, the moon has a lot less mass.
- In Titan A.E., the moon is hit by continent-sized shrapnel from the Earthshattering Kaboom that kickstarts the plot.
- Home Movies features a song that repeatedly demands the listener blow up the moon, though it never actually happens.
- In Beast Wars, the planet the Maximals and Predacons land on has two moons. At the end of season 1, one of them turns out to be an alien Kill Sat, which Optimus Primal ends up destroying by Heroic Sacrifice.
- The series finale of Roswell Conspiracies opens with a shot of the Shedoan fleet blowing up the moon and uses the Eiffel Tower Effect several times over to demonstrate in minute detail exactly how much destruction blowing up the moon actually causes. The whole thing is soon revealed to be a simulation, though they still plan on blowing up the moon.
- The rings orbiting the planet Saturn may have formed when a moon orbiting it broke up either by straying too close to its parent planet or was destroyed in a collision with another moon.
- Some planets may eventually lose their moons billions of years from now. Because it is orbiting the Red Planet faster than that planet can spin, the Martian moon Phobos may eventually collide with Mars; because it is the largest retrograde object in the Solar System, Triton, the largest moon of Neptune, may eventually also collide with its planet, creating a ring system rivaling Saturn's; and even though the Moon is actually moving away from the Earth until it slows down so much that it it literally stuck above one side of our planet permanently, the dying and expanding Sun will eventually cause the Moon to spiral back toward Earth, causing it to shatter and collide with our own planet (ironically, this was also how our Moon was born).
- Project A119. The US during the Cold War had a plan to detonate a nuclear weapon on the moon during the 1950's. Officially called the much less insane-sounding "A Study of Lunar Research Flights".