fall flat(redirected from fallen flat)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Financial, Encyclopedia.
Related to fallen flat: defer to, off-chance, give rise to, come to fruition, in its entirety, pick up on, called on
1. To fail or be ineffective. Good luck—the last time management tried to implement a new dress code, that measure fell flat.
2. To fail to be humorous, as of a joke. A: "Unfortunately, my first stand-up routine really fell flat." B: "Well, maybe you just had the wrong audience."
Fail, prove to be ineffective, as in His jokes nearly always fell flat-no one ever laughed at them. [First half of 1800s]
1. If an event or an attempt to do something falls flat, it is completely unsuccessful. If the efforts fall flat and the economic situation does not change, this city can expect another riot 25 years from now. She was badly disappointed when the evening fell flat.
2. If a joke falls flat, nobody thinks it is funny. He then started trying to tell jokes to the assembled gathering. These too fell flat.
fall flatfail completely to produce the intended or expected effect.
fall ˈflatif a joke, a story, or an event falls flat, it completely fails to amuse people or to have the effect that was intended: I didn’t think the comedian was funny at all — most of his jokes fell completely flat.
1. To fail miserably when attempting to achieve a result.
2. To have no effect: The jokes fell flat.