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A character goes on a rant, presumably induced by some slight, and is caught up in a spot of Angrish. Or maybe they are giving a stirring speech, and are really on a roll, when they let out some Non Sequitur. When the rant or speech ends, the person being chewed out or preached to, with a perplexed tone, ignores 99% of the speech in order to single out the Non Sequitur.

Compare I Take Offense to That Last One, where the target (if being lambasted) only disagrees with one of the insults, implying that they admit the others are correct. Also compare You Make Me Sic, where in a situation you expect someone to have a strong reaction to a statement or insult they single out bad spelling and grammar.

Examples of Non Sequitur Distraction include:

Comic Books

  • Kitty Pryde provides us this example from Astonishing X Men, though in this case what Kitty points out was the thing she was most concerned over.

 Emma Frost: Three students were missing from my ethics class. Seventeen overall. Logan had to break up two fistfights and a mystical swordfight. And that dreadful Guatemalan crab-boy is at Benetech telling reporters this is every mutant's only chance to avoid burning in everlasting hellfire. This is eating us from the inside out.

Kitty: Oh my God ... you teach ethics?


  • The former Trope Namer was Animal House; towards the end, Bluto gives a stirring speech about not giving up, and at one point says "Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?" Otter, in reaction, looks confused for a moment and mutters, "Germans?" to which Boon responds "Forget it, he's rolling."

Live Action TV

  • In an episode of Titus; Erin is chewing Ken out for being a bad father, at one point calling him a "Motard". When her rant ends, he just looks at her funny and says "Motard?"
  • On an episode of Barney Miller a riot breaks out in front of the precinct station. Barney gives an impassioned speech to a representative, saying among other things "Maybe we are all going to hell in a handbasket." When things quiet down, Dietrich says to Barney "Hell in a handbasket?"
  • This is a stock gag on Top Gear. with Jeremy Clarkson (and occasionally Richard Hammond) going off on a long-winded, over-the-top rant at one of the others (usually James May), at the end of which May will react to only one small part of the entire rant.
  • In one episode of Parks and Recreation, the gang is auditioning mural ideas. Jerry starts to give a touching speech about how his idea was influenced by his mother, but he accidentally calls the mural a "murinal." Seeing as how he's the Butt Monkey, nobody lets him live it down.
  • In Supernatural after Castiel Molotov Cocktails St. Michael, Dean calls Castiel on his choice of epithet.


Web Original

  • One one of the Image Board forums, someone told the story about how his mother's bakery was broken in to, and to protect the merchandise, she had him store all the cakes on hand at his apartment--about forty of them. He laments that he already housed[1] one of them, and didn't know what else to do. This was the immediate response:

 Lex Luthor: (face lit up) "CAKES?! FORTY OF THEM?!"


  1. ate the whole thing by himself
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