Who's Behind Listverse?
Jamie founded Listverse due to an insatiable desire to share fascinating, obscure, and bizarre facts. He has been a guest speaker on numerous national radio and television stations and is a five time published author.More About Us
10 Great Falls Caught on Tape
In terms of pure comedy, nothing is funnier than a person falling down. Cruel as it sounds, this violent, often chaotic disruption of routine has made us laugh since the time of the caveman. Our love of the stumblebum continues to the present day, as scores of young sadists joyfully tape their friends getting devastated, while clumsy fools continue to insist upon going out in public, where today’s internet climate puts them at constant risk of being caught in the act of falling.
However, all falls are not created equally, and as we view ten of the greatest falls caught on tape, special attention must be paid to the different varieties of the fall-down, as each has its own unique set of characteristics and delights.
Slipping on ice is one of the funniest circumstances for a fall. This is because the nature of ice provides two things: both a complete lack of body control as the person goes down, combined with that person’s perception that they can rectify the situation and avoid the inevitable fall – when your feet are sliding around beneath you, rather than suddenly out from under you, there’s a sense you can right yourself. Unfortunately, this misconception often makes the drama that much better.
As will be further proven in a moment, news programs often inadvertently broadcast, or even encourage, the ass-busting of our fellow man. This clip from the RTE News in Dublin was simply a slice-of-life set-up on the street, in order to show the blustery conditions. Instead, it caught this marvelous slip on ice. Note that the man attempts to use the wall to stop his fall. Also, watch the way his head bounces off the icy pavement.
This recent trend, used by amateur women to combine fitness with their blossoming sexualities, has produced some great falls. This is because many of these women have no athleticism or artistic ability, and so approach the pole like a playground monkey-bar. And how many of us have ever fallen off the monkey-bars?
This drunken woman’s fall is one of the most viewed tumbles in web history, and for good reason. She appears to be fooling around at a fair or festival. Watch how she gets stuck up on the pole, causing her to almost lock up, which precipitates a slide – face-first – into the ground. Again, notice the fantastic head-bounce, and the fact that this clearly happened in front of many people for whom she was trying to show-off.
This is always enticing because the subject of the fall is inevitably grandstanding on the diving board, or is taking their dive way too seriously. The above video was selected because of its popularity, the fact that the kid slipped backwards onto his face.
On-location reporters and correspondents often put themselves in dangerous positions in order to capture a story. War, natural disasters, crime – these folks go everywhere. That’s why it’s so ironic that the greatest news fall happened during a grape-stomping segment. This legendary video is just as famous for the audio as it is for the actual trip. But really, it’s the entire package that causes it to rise above its peers.
Large people falling down should have a website all of its own. This is because heavy people often have less control of their bodies than others (odd, considering their center of gravity), and the fact that when they do fall, they create more devastation than skinnier klutzes. And why do so many obese people think a table will support them? Oddly, there are many clips of huge people falling off tables. This one takes the cake, though. It has received some very serious web attention, and the woman absolutely upends herself while desperately trying to look cool.
Drunks make excellent fallers because falling is one of the quintessential elements of over-the-top drunkenness. The lack of limb control and balance is delightful. An entire category could be made for falls during field-sobriety tests, as many of these are caught on tape nowadays with police dashboard cams. But the selection here has to be this guy, whose already been brought into the station-house. The highlight of this clip, which was shown all over national TV on The World’s Dumbest Criminals, is actually the second fall out in the hallway, though it is the first tumble that causes the perp to put a hole in the police station wall with his head.
There have been so many great falls in the world of entertainment, whether they be on the red carpet, or onstage with Beyonce, J-Lo, and Lady Gaga. But the modeling industry gets the top vote today. These models (who are generally ugly) are so smug and self-important as they confidently march down the runway in asinine clothing, that when a glitch occurs, it’s priceless. This one is classic because of the model’s protracted struggle with, and defeat by, her preposterous shoes.
There are plenty of good falls in sports, though too many of them involve the mechanics of playing the actual game, which logically puts players in the position to often hit the dirt. But it feels like cheating to come down on a baseball or football player who stumbles trying to make catch, or a sprinter who falls when running as hard as he or she can. That’s why this mascot clip is perfect. Mascots are idiotic distractions anyway, so no one cares when Wolfie, the University of Nevada mascot, horrifically plummets off the dugout in the above clip. His rival mascot clearly lacks the humanity to help him, so instead just chooses to go on with the show.
Kids make great subjects for falls, usually because of their naiveté and innocence. They surprise easily, and react with gusto. They also don’t usually get embarrassed and try to cover for their gaffe, but rather sit and revel in their brutal misery. The above clip is one of the most popular in the history of the Internet, and is still very funny. A Mexican boy is harassed by his friend, who causes him to fall into the water beneath the flimsy log bridge. The victim’s angry tears at the end are exquisite.
These falls are unique because the emphasis isn’t so much on what the person looks like when they go down, as it is where they end up falling. It’s amazing how many videos exist of people not paying attention, and plummeting through manholes. Usually the humor comes from the quick look of utter shock on their faces, and then their swift and complete disappearance into the abyss. This trapdoor fall wins the prize. Showed on many television programs featuring accidents and caught-on-tape moments, and the recipient of millions of internet hits, we know that this worker in a Dublin pub (what the hell’s going on in Ireland?) is about to get obliterated. In fact, the suspense is almost as good as the fall.