Childrens networks have taken up the more annoying practice of shrinking the main picture and filling the resulting space with promos.
episode Crossing Paths, where Jessie releases Dustox. What ruined the moment?A bumper for the new episode
Pandora radio features not only ads between songs, but full-video ads between stations.
on AMC, an ad filled the entire bottom of the screen for a western mini-series, accompanied by loud horse noises. Rather annoying, to say the least.
During an episode hosted by Will Farrell,
strangely enough, though, one TV rating bug appeared on a VHS release of the
candy bar before opening another one!
were guests. Supposedly, the censors only let them mention the name of the show on-air if an ad appeared (Schitts Creek Wednesdays on Pop) each time it was mentioned. Of coursethey proceeded to do so
The cable news channels count down to presidential speeches or a states election close, while CNBC and Fox Business will put timers on to countdown tothe releases of economic reports.
Oh, Im sorry, is my wedding interrupting your promotion? Were right in the middle of
It wasnt just Japan that did this. NTV, a channel based in the Canadian province of Newfoundland, used to (until about 2008 or so) run news tickers during some of their early-morning programming (and possibly their primetime lineup as well). One time,they ran
OneAnimal Planetbug for a then-upcoming show about training dogs to perform various cool tricks used the pause the actual show trick. A frisbee would fly in, the current show freezing while a dog caught it, then the host would walk up, praise it, and lead it away before letting the show continue.
, such as Shoving Buddies, Slowly Rotating Black Man, and Crossarmed Opposites.
ends with the credits being shown in a small tear in the bottom of the screen while the beginning of the next episode starts. Great idea, saves time and everything, right? Well, except that it now completely blocks out theunique-per-episode punch linethey have written on the bottom of the screen…unless its one of the few early episodes that starts with a cold opening, of course. Reruns of
60th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray Discs advertise new bonus features during the end credits.
Someone on late-nightTeletoonmust be an epic troll, because theyve done these commercial pop-ups during
reruns. Yes, they had a pop-up ad (for another show) which included a sound that was taken from the show that was actually playing.
series. Sometimes, this will also be used to announce news related to the show itself, like promoting theatrical releases and contests related to the show.
by randomly broadcasting a pair of red eyes on its feed during certain shows like
A trend of a commercial blurb in the form of a pop-up style graphic (audio optional) during a show. Commonly called bugs by broadcasters, especially the small, semitransparent logos that appear in the lower right corner of the screen more or less continuously (in this case, its usually to identify a network). Less commonly called screen boogers by annoyed viewers. The larger straps like the one shown in the page pic are called lower-thirds and yes, they do take up 33% of the vertical screen space, sometimes more.
No, its just… no, its, somebodys making a joke, forget it.
Game Show Networkused to have a huge bug for PlayMania that went two-thirds of the way across the screen and about a quarter of the way up. Just barely wide enough to obscure the password in
video, an ad forMcDonaldscoffee showed up, resulting ina hilarious juxtaposition
Its not just television that has done this, either. Japanese video siteNico Nico Dougaactually started adding interstitial ads smack-dab in the middle of the video you happen to be watching, with no way to skip ahead or pause at all. When you try to watch a music video, you get hit with a
to watch On Demand – they had theirCommercial Pop-Upsaying TBS Very Funnyall through a movie that includes blood spatters, seven on-screen deaths and terrified hostages.
on NBC, the network put up a sports bulletin with the final score of an Oakland Raiders/New York Jets football game …during the scene in which Clara takes her first steps. This only escalated viewer outrage over NBC havingpre-empted the rest of said gameand itsMiracle Rallyon the east coast so they could air said film on-schedule (network staff had intended to start the film
currently have a deal with Fox, wherein they will not put up real advertisements like this on during their show.
rerun get covered up with a pop-up.
pop-up promoting their website: a bing! sound, a pop-up and a mouse double click sound promoting the web links to which ever program you were watching. After a few months (and viewer complaints) this went away as the novelty of the web wore off.
). The stations justify this because some people DVR and record showsthis is also how the networks can remind people who are watching a pirated program where the program originated from, and ensure pirates at least buy the DVD to pirate from.
Nick actually did a whole marathon where the
This can get pretty extreme duringProfessional Wrestlingshows, as not only do the pop-ups take up space on the screen and distract from the match, but the commentators all of a sudden start ignoring the match and begin shilling for the show or product being advertised.
episode, for the following Lloyd-Webber/Graham Norton reality star search and included an animated version of Norton. This led to official complaints from over
freezing the Nick channel bug, then moments later have it thaw.
An episode makes a joke using this where, during a feminist speech by Lois, Marge appears in a pop-up ad for
It can be a major distraction for anyone watching whatever program is currently on.
On NBC Kids, the NBC logo falls off and a childs hands glue the logo back on. This happens several times each kids show, leading to someFridge Logicthat maybe the kid should try a stronger adhesive, like tape.
Rape as Drama-related ticker during the kids show
, a scene where Dora counted five objects for the viewer had the fifth one completely obscured by the network logo in the corner. Eventually, networks switched to either a transparent logo, a smaller logo or no logo at all.
The first episode of Season 8 has an example of this using the network logo. Scrubs had switched from NBC to ABC between seasons 7 and 8. In the opening of the episode, JD walks in, points very obviously at the ABC logo and says Thats new! The camera then pans to the Janitor to show he has a new watch.
spoofs internet popups with their game Advert Attackthe games entire challenge is navigating around or getting rid of fake ads that dominate the screen so you could actually get at the games controls.
Like the Engvall example for TBS, Nickelodeon tried the same in 2013 with their infamous
marathon that ran the day after Thanksgiving of 2008 (which included episodes from the fourth season, which wasunlikely to be released on DVD at the time due to music rights issues) was also plagued by
pops up on screen. This feature allows children watching the show to answer trivia questions about it or play a game with one of the characters, as was the case with the most recent
spoofs the news ticker variation of this trope, by having the news report relate to the show in question.
Some childrens preschool programming like Nick Junior and Playhouse Disney kept a solid logo in the corner of the screen, obscuring what was under them. On one broadcast of an episode of
At the beginningMerchandise-Drivenshows aired on Japanese channels, a text ad for the interactive feature
that came on after the filmappeared on screen
archived article from a possibly now defunct
took this tropeUp to Eleven. Not only did the banner announcing the test block part of the programming, but it also blocked both the station bug and the Up Next pop-up!
and its revivals, the correct answer shown briefly to home viewers in
subtler promotions for shows, such as having a character from
A gag one happens with the network logo version on
Back to TV Tokyo, theyve done non-news related popups on their kids shows as well. For example, duringPriPara100th episode celebrationin 2016, they placed references to the number 100 throughout it. If viewers were able to list all the times it appeared in the episodes, theyd be entered to win PriPara-related prizes. There was another campaign around the same time where viewers had to spot TV Tokyos banana mascot in each of their kids shows and tell them what scene it appeared during. The prizes varied based on the show, but PriParas was noteworthy for giving away several pieces of merchandise that were not officially released yet at the time of the campaign.
MTV in the UK feel the need to keep the name of the programme youre watching on-screen at all times. While this is often helpful during music video slots, certainly themed ones (MTV UK is actually still reasonable for this, broadly speaking) its less relevant during regular programming.
Bugs for the latest game in the The Escapists promo cycle appear in many of their video features, including
TNTs NBA coverage will use a free throw to sneak one of these in (usually for one of TNT or evenTBSs original productions) sometimes, along with anEnforced Plugby the announcers.
: Ling-Ling (who speaks in pseudo-Japanese and can only be understood through subtitles) is trying to convince the other housemates to help him, when suddenly a bug for
An ad for the Nickelodeon phone app sometimes would (translucently) cover the entire screen during some shows.
example above, reminding viewers that, yes, they were watching
episodeAnd the Winner Is…, a bug ofSpongeBoblaughing shows up just as Korra is shown falling, making it look like he was laughing at her misery. Its even become ameme
aired onCBeebies, an ad usually popped up that had a yellow blob thinking of whatever show was coming up next, covering half the screen during theOnce per Episodesong and staying there for about 15 seconds.
(A pop-up for Shovin Buddies appears)
SBS 6 in the Netherlands once stopped a movie in a manner that resembled a network/signal problem for a quick ad for a dance show hosted by a resident presenter.
at the bottom of the screen and Quagmire tries to have sex with her. It then shifts into an overly longTake That!against
the game after noticing how intense it had gotten, but the phone lines at network control were overwhelmed by viewers asking about if they planned to air the movie or the game).
, often just before or after commercial breaks. Theyd take up perhaps a third of the screen.
YTV did the same about a year earlier but with a different colored Fruit Loop rolling by (the contest was sponsored by Kelloggs).
Theres another chapter in which, in middle of Stewies wedding ceremony, one of this ads pops up. Spanish channellaSexta
. A little after the episode Dance Like Nobodys Watching began, the Youre Watching [show name] on PBS Kids! box appeared. Then Oscar pops up, holding a gadget, and activating it, the box ripples in a pretty pink color. The box has its normal red color, but then proceeds to
poking at the bug itself, but theyve since switched to mostly transparent USA logos and sometimes messages that a new episode of whatever show will be starting at x time.
books. Rowleys family recorded a Christmas special long ago, and the year they recorded it there was a storm warning at the bottom of the screen. Now whenever Rowley watches the video, he calls Greg to tell him theres a winter storm coming. Greg used to fall for it until one day when Rowley called him about a winter storm
repeats were interrupted with random comedic videos for the first couple weeks and a mocking voice stating that Nick Did It!. Even though it only affected repeats seen hundreds of times before, viewers werent happy to see a network messing with programming they paid for, and Nick quickly did away with the intrusions (and eventually the block).
had a parody on one of these, after JD thinks of a silly sitcom about the Janitor and Ted adopting a kid, called Legal Custodians. The next time JD brings it up, a Bug for it appears at the bottom of the screen.
manifests itself as a high-pitched scream during an otherwise quiet moment in a show.
dropped down from the top of the screen to the bottom.
had an ad for Celebrity Fit Club pop up. It takes up the entire screen, save for the TV rating bug.
The premiere airing of one episode of
During the Sci-Fi Channel run, a pop-up of theSci-Fi Channellogo would appear in the bottom-right corner of the screen, often obscuring Crow T. Robot during the theater scenes. This was so annoying that viewers successfully petitioned Sci-Fi to move their logo to the other side of the screen.
Fox Kidsused to have a popup with a little screen, a flashing yellow arrow, and picture of theSeries Mascotfor whichever show was coming up next (i.e.Taired ranger). It would show up during the third act and the tag. They used similar icons for their commercials.
, Nickelodeon had these with Jimmy coming up and doing a short as one of these bugs. They diverted the attention from the show to Jimmy doing experiments anywhere on the screen at any time. He did stuff like modifying the original bug at first, but it grew more clever. During an episode of
These ads are typically not for products, but for the networks programming. Often, they advertise what show is on next or later that day on the same channel. Sometimes, it can be a commercial popup indicating what show you are watching and what network you are watching it on. Occasionally the network will even go so far as to slap a big NEW EPISODE graphic in the corner of the screen for the duration of that episodes first broadcast (example
completely disappear from the screen.
It then did the same disappearing act as Ms. Os box.
, bugs became so common (and occasionally covered up important words or numbers, such as game ratings, at the corner or bottom of the screen), that, in one game review, they inserted a number of bugs all over the screen at random intervals that obscured it completely.
Parodied in aStrong Bad E-Mailwhere Strong Bad mentioned Discovery Channel specials about CGI dinosaurs. While he said this, a bug for the fictional CGI
filmon Adult Swim, the movie was displayed without sound in a tiny box in the corner of the screen, and episodes of
A similar trend is to start airing commercials during the credits of a show or movie bysmashing the credits to one side of the screen and showing promos on the other. The credits are usually sped up and muted in favor of the shocking revelation coming on later tonight. You can bet that if you see or hear stay tuned for scenes from next weeks show at the end of the episode before the commercial itll be this.
, where, during a scene where Homer and Bart are daring each other, a pop-up ad for
episode More Crap to celebrate their Emmy win for Make Love, Not Warcraft. Whenever a particularly crass moment took place, an Emmy Award Winning Series message and trophy pops up on screen. At the end of the episode, the advertisement became a trophy given
. Chowder scribbles on the screen and gets yelled at. After its cleaned up he points over at the Cartoon Network logo and asks What about that one? to which Gaspatcho responds, That one doesnt come off. Ive tried. The channel icon is part of the episode, making it obvious that the logo has changed since the episodes initial airing.
TNT had small pop ups that werent very intrusive, but when it changed formats, it got bad. Spike TV had a bad habit of doing animated pop ups for their cartoons like
example, Family in Canada had one around 2004 for a back to school-themed contest where a BTS bug would appear at a random point in the show. You could be entered for a contest if you correctly named the show and episode that it appeared in.
do this, too, though both shows go back to the regular format if it precedes something like
was created where Goren wanted to know what the hell the USA bug in the corner of the screen was. He then tried unsuccessfully to interact with it before declaring it weird.
The first airing of the episode O Is Not For Old had the box show up except the Youre Watching… text was flipped upside down. Ms. O then appears, elbow-bumping the box and causing the text to readjust. She thenbroke the fourth wall and proceeded to give the viewers two thumbs-upfor about 5 seconds before everything disappeared by moving down. Not the same disappearing act as the example above. Again, huge distraction.
got them to stop running voice-overs during the shows credits because gags would frequently be carried over and played on top of them.
They also did the same to promote other shows like
. Then, the program did a sketch about the situation.Heres
TV Tokyo has a variant of this duringKodomomukeanime, where text will appear on the top of the screen. First, text saying TXN News will pop up, which is followed by a blurb relating to some breaking news, usually relating to an earthquake, tsunami, volcanic eruption or typhoon.Heres an example of a kids show airing with this type of warning
Early inThe 90sThe Discovery Channelused to have an
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
. There were also bugs where they replaced large segments of the show with a bunch of random clips from all of their other shows. However, unlike the puppets, it replaced an actual part of the episode, and often times, the punchline of the shows best joke.
In the last few years of its run,Toon Disneydid similar things, not only popping up advertisements, but also taking up a full third of the screen to show you a loud purple pattern giving the name of the show you are watching, for the benefit of parents who might find this more helpful in their decision-making process than just looking atthe giant robots fighting on-screen.
appears, obscuring everything hes saying. Another character exclaims Ling-Lings right! I love the
were originally premiering, Nick would promote the show by either having a giant splat of milk suddenly appear on-screen, or having Tak appear and summon a giant yellow tornado, thus scaring the crap out of viewers watching the network. They later did
A variation happens on video sharing websites such asYouTubewhere the pop-ups are usually for larger companies. Case in point: During a stream of an
show! Okay, right now, you have a time slot,
Disney Channel Scandinavia used to have in years 2006-2007 a popup with an elevator landing from top to the bottom right corner of the screen, then it opened revealing a picture of the character from whichever show was coming up next (i.e. Tarzan, Kim Possible, Jake Long, Fillmore). It would show up two minutes before the shows episode ended.
over things that require the bottom of the screen, such as Toshis subtitles or the Bill Publishermann gag.
It also once did a running gag where characters would repeatedly break the Fourth Wall to complain about and kibitz the pop-ups. Plus, most of these promos are for fake shows
Though technically not a pop-up, the TV ratings logos used on American TV appear to be getting bigger and bigger, with it now not uncommon for the icon to over as much as 1/5 or more of the screen, obscuring the scene noticeably. Fortunately, rumors at the time of their introduction that theyd be required on DVD releases as well turned out to be untrue
The BBC do these with small bars at the bottom or the top of the screen for the next show. Normally doesnt happen on BBC One, butonce did
have stumbled upon a way to intrude even more: Bill Engvall himself pops up and
They brand the video feed, making bootleg/YouTubed copies easier to identify.
The website can be notorious for this, sometimes showing advertising bugs seemingly every 2 minutes, and about every other bug is unhideable.
where SpongeBob laughs at other sad moments in movies and TV shows.
Oh, oh, look! There we go! Oh, look at em jostling each other around! Oh, they give each other a hard time, but theyre friends!
Nick-At-Nite puts gigantic rectangular advertisements for whatevers coming up next that block the bottom third of the screen.
parodied this with a sketch featuring a
would randomly run through parts of the show, too. The bugs actually ran by as part of a contest: Name what show, episode, and scene the baby ran by in, send it to Nick, and youd be in the runnings for a treehouse.
did a skit where Kenan Thompson and Bill Hader played TNTs playcallers for the NBA, Charles Barkley and Marv Albert. While theyre trying to talk about the game, aCommercial Pop-Upappears for a new TNT show, which they notice and start talking about. When it vanishes, they go back to talking about the game, but then it pops up again, with Barkley getting really excited by the hijinks that take place in the pop up. This repeats throughout the skit, much of Marv Alberts chagrin.
parody where increasingly bigger fake pop-ups for the channel kept covering crucial items (first a seemingly critical piece of evidence, then astripping characters nudity), at one point covering
Beyond just reclaiming some of the valuable advertising time they had previously wasted on actual show, these popups serve several other purposes linked to the rise of digital video recorders:
had a message on the screen for 15 seconds at the start that said This is wherethe networkputs that mammoth bug. Then, Enjoy the show.Biting-the-Hand Humordoesnt even begin to cover it.
aired while the movie ran (in its entirety) in the corner. During this, humongous pop-up ads for the movie with loud sound effects also appeared from time to time. But…this world premiere was onApril Fools Daya couple months after the theatrical release, so it wasnt meant to be the serious television debut by any means.
Television Without Pityforums used to have one post about a forum-er who sawThe Revealof a tattoo in a
in early 2015 pulled a similar trick. Three times during the course of the premiere, a bug of Cookie Monster would pop up followed by a text box similar to the ones described in the
Similarly, anotherCouch Gaghad theFoxlogo pop up on the screen,with the entire family rushing over to stomp on it(back when logo bugs were the only commercial pop ups around).
The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)
appeared. Sadly, despite being a parody, it fit here, as it appeared exactly within the confines of the back of Strong Bads head.
This is because since the country uses the ISDB digital TV system, which allows sudden calamity warnings to occur as a safety feature for those near calamity-prone areas.
They can not be easily skipped like normal commercials (their first appearances were around 2001-2002, coinciding with the rise of the DVR)
Global TV in Canada used to have large pop-ups advertising
USA Networkused to have non-transparent bugs featuring
The 2011 National EAS teston Nickelodeon
viewers (includingCharlie BrookerandSimon Pegg), so much so that Doctor Who and Graham Norton actually became trending topics on Twitter because of it. As seen in the page quote,over the incident on his show, culminating in another animated version of him popping up and being promptly exterminated by a Dalek.
fansite has a minor complaint about network bugs covering up presenter captions on the Kids Choice Awards.
They make DVD releases more desirable than off-air recordings. (However, there are many DVD releases that show a persistent studio logo in the bottom corner of the screen.)
, the kid came in, hit a button, and for several seconds the episode turned intoa puppet show version of itself
This also happens in the United States, too, usually for severe weather warnings. For instance, on onequborecording of the
In March of 2001, YTVs The Zone block had a subplot involving Yokomites, literal bugs that would show up at random points in the show.Here is the only surviving footage of that subplot.
. The bug most noticeable is a pole-vaulting brain-thing which happily runs across the entire screen, usually during a climactic scene, but their habit to smush the credits to start showing trailers goes wrong during the longer-running season finales.
OnCartoon Network, sometimes a gigantic ad advertising the next show will literally cover the bottom 40% of the screen.
E! has bugs running pretty much constantly. This makes sense during their normal shows, where a celebrity gossip newsreel would fit right in. It does not make sense, however, when this pops up during a movie screening.
to talk about his show. This is an especiallyegregiousexample because it defeats the entire purpose of using pop-ups as opposed to actual commercials, as it basically creates an incredibly short commercial break at a random moment of the show. Even more hilariously, the commercial begins with Engvall
The same situation as the first example happened when
by having a promo cut in immediately after a shows intro is finished.
Like with both Avatar and Korra mentioned in theWestern Animationfolder, Cartoon Network did this with the
.It basically looked like the character was peeing out of her bathing suit.
show. They will run their commercials in a popup for things coming up later on the show.
During the airing of the 1968 television film
drew a lot of complaints. It didnt help that their text font was a larger size than TV Tokyos. It did return two years later, but such warnings are only shown on local stations carrying their programming, using a much smaller font.Heres an example
This whole shebang practically would distract this viewer for its duration.
The UK arm of the station were running some kind of semi-market-research survey by telephone over about a week sometime in the 90s. This was advertised by wanging a massive picture of a head with a question mark in it over the right-hand third of the screen and a question with a phone number to dial on the other two thirds. Right in the middle. For ages.
Nickelodeonand theDisney ChannelLOVE to advertise when they have a new movie premiering soon. Theyll put up atimercounting down to
named after the type of image in the pop-up
telling you how cool it is that he can pause the show you are watching
. At this point Horatio gets on his cell phone and tells someone to arrest someone at Channel 9 for the number of ads.
Well, at least it wasnt one of those promos where they got the whole cast shoving each other playfully like theyre all good pals.
Marge went further at the start of the 2007 Treehouse of Horror: with so many ads, she gets angry (Cant people just watch the show theyre watching?) and gets rid of the promos in various ways, such as vacuuming football players with a minivac, sticking House in a microwave and putting the rest in a meatloaf. Wherein they wriggle.
There was also another one where Olive and Otto did a little fixing-up of the box with the same text. They actually
Sci-Fi Channelhad a bug for their Trek 2.0 version of
A non-advertising example happens sometimes on Japanese networks whenever an earthquake is about to occur. First, a large pop-up showing a map of where the earthquake will happen is shown on screen along with text mentioning the affected areas, accompanied by the sound of chimes and a narrator saying This is an early earthquake warning. Prepare for powerful tremors, which repeats twice. Sometimes,two of those graphics will pop up at once and cover the entire screen.
TV Asahi also used to put news blurbs in their anime, untilone such incident
that has fun with this: one bug for the series has the two leads walk into the corner for a while. During a seemingly normal commercial for the same series, the bar pops upand Shawn and Gusspot it.
or whatever theyre going to show up to 24 hours beforehand.
had a bug that featured a giant robot, including metallic stomping and explosion sounds that actually obscured several lines of dialogue. Needless to say, the fans were not pleased.
fans had the same demand withComedy Centralduring its run on that channel. They also managed, while the show aired on that network to stop text crawls across the bottom of the screen,
PBSKids, like most other networks, has the little box telling viewers what show is airing and when it premieres. They include a little skit with the characters from their shows in their popups, such as the ones for/during
.Viewers Are Moronsindeed. Hilariously, it first popped up during a scene that Cookie Monster was in, which may have momentarily confused the shows young viewers.
4Kids did this, and their logo was not particularly semi-transparent. This often made it difficult to see things like life points, or the attack strength of a monster (in
episode A Snoodles Tale in the Tri-State/New York City area, a red banner with a severe thunderstorm warning popped up.
appears, stating Yes, we even have these in movies now. (Actually, its a newsbar, but still…)
went on with the gag by putting a banner of its flagship humour show