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If you want things to be not-weird between you and Marty and I, stop actin' weird about them! Be normal!—Faye, Questionable Content
Coined by Eric Burns of Websnark, and large parts of this entry copied from his post.
Sometimes, relationships don't work out. It's a shame, but in romantic comedies, it's also a goldmine. What if one person moves on? Even better, what if they move on to one of their mutual friends?
The common trope in this situation is for the new couple to tiptoe around the old partner, trying to spare their feelings and avoid negative repercussions.
A Sorkin Relationship Moment is a moment where that person gets fed up and demands that the other people just stop it, already. This is just too much. It is uncomfortable. It is unpleasant, and it is unfair.
The Sorkin Relationship Moment doesn't have to be romantic. It is, however, an attempt to resolve a tense situation through direct confrontation -- shouting, in effect, stop it! from one person to the next.
Compare/contrast Ignore the Disability.
Anime and Manga
- You're Under Arrest has Natsumi yelling "What did you NOT want to tell me last night?" at Tokairin before they kiss in the airport.
- This is how Eduardo Saverin's action of cutting off funds from Mark Zuckerberg, who has dropped out of Harvard to run Facebook from California with Sean Parker, is framed in The Social Network (written by the Trope Namer). And people wonder why there's slashfic.
- This trope is basically on continuous rotation in the later Harry Potter books.
- More like on steroids!
Live Action Television
- Sports Night: Dana and Casey twice, Natalie and Jeremy many times. A classic example would be when Natalie insists everyone treat her like normal after they discover an athlete grabbed her arm and exposed himself to her in a locker room.
- The West Wing: Josh did this three times.
- And a slightly unusual but very funny version of the trope, Leo and Sam with regards to Sam dating Leo's daughter Mallory in the first season.
- Studio 60 On the Sunset Strip: Danny and Jordan, and Matt and Harriet have had it countless times.
- Unsurprisingly, all three shows listed above were penned by Aaron Sorkin.
- How I Met Your Mother uses this trope with regards to Ted, Barney and Robin.
- Questionable Content: Several times, including the strip that lends the above quote, Faye frustratedly tells Dora or Marten that it's OK that they're dating and sleeping together now, even though Faye and Marten had been interested in each other (but not dating) previously, and that they don't have to hide it from her. In fact, it ends up being Dora who develops a neurosis about it.
- A non-romantic version in Gunnerkrigg Court Kat calls out Antimony and Reynardine's awkwardness, and demands that they be friends again. While holding a pair of wire strippers.