History Main / IncrediblyObviousTail

29th Jun '17 4:56:36 PM ironballs16
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* One of the classic tailing tricks used against people who know that it's likely they'll be tailed is to send two people - one relatively obvious and one extremely discreet.

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* One of the classic tailing tricks used against people who know that it's likely they'll be tailed is to send two people - [[GoLookAtTheDistraction one relatively obvious and one extremely discreet.discreet]].
29th Jun '17 4:55:09 PM ironballs16
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* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' loves this trope, particularly with suspicious vans. Vans have been seen following the characters marked "Flowers By Irene" and "Fresh Burritos Instantly" (both with the initials "FBI" clearly distinguished), a pizza van with TheMenInBlack holding a pizza as the image, and in one case, marked "Ordinary Van".

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* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' loves this trope, particularly with suspicious vans. Vans have been seen following the characters marked "Flowers By Irene" and "Fresh Burritos Instantly" (both with the initials "FBI" clearly distinguished), a pizza van with TheMenInBlack holding a pizza as the image, and in one case, [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial marked "Ordinary Van".Van"]].
24th May '17 9:56:17 AM JackG
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* Averted in ''Literature/TheFourthProtocol'' with the MI-5 Watcher team. One man they're following has had training in counter-surveillance and tries various methods to shake a tail, but the Watchers have him in a 'box' so that he'll always travel in the direction of a Watcher, no matter which way he goes.

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* Averted in ''Literature/TheFourthProtocol'' with the MI-5 Watcher team. One man they're following has had training in counter-surveillance and tries various methods to shake a tail, but the Watchers have him in a 'box' so that he'll always travel in the direction of a Watcher, no matter which way he goes. The trope is inverted with the man they're training -- his counter-surveillance methods are inept and [[RevealingSkill only give him away as an intelligence operative]].
11th May '17 7:05:20 PM FF32
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-->"Tonight's surveillance package: Fake yuppie not checking her text messages. Imposter homeless man; slightly offensive. And the hipster following me looks familiar."

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-->"Tonight's surveillance package: Fake yuppie not checking her text messages. Imposter Impostor homeless man; slightly offensive. And the hipster following me looks familiar."



* ''Series/PersonOfInterest''. In "Blunt", John Reese is tailing this weeks' Number when two college girls returning from the showers pointedly eyeball him, and he realises [[AccidentalPervert just how conspicuous a middle-aged guy in a trenchcoat and camera phone looks in a women's dorm]].

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* ''Series/PersonOfInterest''. In "Blunt", John Reese is tailing this weeks' Number when two college girls returning from the showers pointedly eyeball him, and he realises realizes [[AccidentalPervert just how conspicuous a middle-aged guy in a trenchcoat and camera phone looks in a women's dorm]].



* Certain missions in the ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAuto'' series, which requirs you to drive maybe three car lengths behind, no closer, no further away. If the guy you're tailing stops at a traffic light, the correct response is to stop ten metres behind him in the middle of the road. He will think this is completely normal.

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* Certain missions in the ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAuto'' series, which requirs requires you to drive maybe three car lengths behind, no closer, no further away. If the guy you're tailing stops at a traffic light, the correct response is to stop ten metres meters behind him in the middle of the road. He will think this is completely normal.



* Makoto in ''VideoGame/Persona5'' begins following the PC around after being asked to investigate them and their friends. She doesn't change her outfit, and is clearly visible the whole time. With little to hide her accept a book shes pretending to read. Its possible to actually walk up and talk to her.

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* Makoto in ''VideoGame/Persona5'' begins following the PC around after being asked to investigate them and their friends. She doesn't change her outfit, and is clearly visible the whole time. With little to hide her accept except a book shes she's pretending to read. Its It's possible to actually walk up and talk to her.
9th Apr '17 7:41:54 PM PlasmaTalon
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* Makoto in ''VideoGame/Persona5'' begins following the PC around after being asked to investigate the and their friends. She's clearly visible the whole time, and its possible to actually walk up and talk to her.

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* Makoto in ''VideoGame/Persona5'' begins following the PC around after being asked to investigate the them and their friends. She's She doesn't change her outfit, and is clearly visible the whole time, and its time. With little to hide her accept a book shes pretending to read. Its possible to actually walk up and talk to her.
9th Apr '17 7:39:48 PM PlasmaTalon
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Added DiffLines:

* Makoto in ''VideoGame/Persona5'' begins following the PC around after being asked to investigate the and their friends. She's clearly visible the whole time, and its possible to actually walk up and talk to her.
2nd Apr '17 8:52:11 PM Angeldeb82
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Whenever a character is being tailed, the pursuer will be very obvious to the prey if the prey would only [[NoPeripheralVision look behind himself/herself.]] Occasionally this is done deliberately, if the authorities ''want'' the suspect to know that they're onto him so that he won't do what he's thinking of doing.

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Whenever a character is being tailed, the pursuer will be very obvious to the prey if the prey would only [[NoPeripheralVision look behind himself/herself.]] himself/herself]]. Occasionally this is done deliberately, if the authorities ''want'' the suspect to know that they're onto him so that he won't do what he's thinking of doing.



* ''LightNovel/FullMetalPanic''. Despite being a trained professional, Sosuke Sagara fails completely in his attempts to covertly follow Kaname Chidori to guard her from kidnappers, as his [[NoSocialSkills nature]] makes him competent on the battlefield but knowing nothing about how to act like an OrdinaryHighSchoolStudent. Such as [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bb9SmBszsdg jumping from a freaking train.]] While it's moving. "I wanted to get off at this station, it had nothing to do with you."

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* ''LightNovel/FullMetalPanic''. Despite being a trained professional, Sosuke Sagara fails completely in his attempts to covertly follow Kaname Chidori to guard her from kidnappers, as his [[NoSocialSkills nature]] {{n|oSocialSkills}}ature makes him competent on the battlefield but knowing nothing about how to act like an OrdinaryHighSchoolStudent. Such as [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bb9SmBszsdg jumping from a freaking train.]] While it's moving. "I wanted to get off at this station, it had nothing to do with you."



* ''The Berlin Memorandum'' by [[Creator/EllestonTrevor Adam Hall]]. The neo-Nazis release Literature/{{Quiller}} in the hope of [[NiceJobGuidingUsHero following him back to his base]]. As he knows he's being followed anyway, the Nazis don't bother hiding themselves, as Quiller is [[JustBetweenYouAndMe working against the clock]] and has to contact his superiors regardless.

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* ''The Berlin Memorandum'' by [[Creator/EllestonTrevor Adam Hall]]. The neo-Nazis release Literature/{{Quiller}} in the hope of [[NiceJobGuidingUsHero [[TrickAndFollowPloy following him back to his base]]. As he knows he's being followed anyway, the Nazis don't bother hiding themselves, as Quiller is [[JustBetweenYouAndMe working against the clock]] and has to contact his superiors regardless.



* ''The Enemy'' by Desmond Bagley. A British scientist runs to Sweden after an attack on a member of his family. A GovernmentAgencyOfFiction follows him but only finds the scientist and his bodyguard killing time there. In order to shake things up, they pretend to be a KGB team conducting a ridiculously inept tail, but this backfires badly when the bodyguard responds by shooting dead the man he's guarding after they're cornered. The rest of the book is spent finding out what was so important about the scientist [[YouKnowTooMuch he had to be killed to prevent him falling into enemy hands]].

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* ''The Enemy'' by Desmond Bagley. A British scientist runs to Sweden after an attack on a member of his family. A GovernmentAgencyOfFiction follows him but only finds the scientist and his bodyguard killing time there. In order to shake things up, they pretend to be a KGB team conducting a ridiculously inept tail, but this backfires badly when the bodyguard responds by shooting dead the man he's guarding after they're cornered. The rest of the book is spent finding out what was so important about the scientist [[YouKnowTooMuch [[HeKnowsTooMuch he had to be killed to prevent him falling into enemy hands]].



* In the ''MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' episode "Feeling Pinkie Keen", Twilight Sparkle tries to study Pinkie Pie's strange precognitive ability by hiding badly and observing Pinkie through binoculars. Pinkie later reveals that she was aware of this the whole time, but decided to play along.

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* In the ''MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' episode "Feeling Pinkie Keen", Twilight Sparkle tries to study Pinkie Pie's strange precognitive ability by hiding badly and observing Pinkie through binoculars. Pinkie later reveals that she was aware of this the whole time, but decided to play along.



* Internal security services will use an IncrediblyObviousTail as a means of intimidating foreign spies or local dissidents. During the UsefulNotes/ColdWar the KGB in Moscow used a technique called "bumper locking" where they'd stay only inches away from the car being followed.

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* Internal security services will use an IncrediblyObviousTail Incredibly Obvious Tail as a means of intimidating foreign spies or local dissidents. During the UsefulNotes/ColdWar the KGB in Moscow used a technique called "bumper locking" where they'd stay only inches away from the car being followed.
25th Mar '17 6:53:11 AM Bissek
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* ''LightNovel/FullMetalPanic''. Despite being a trained professional, Sousake Sagara fails completely in his attempts to covertly follow Kaname Chidori to guard her from kidnappers, as his [[NoSocialSkills nature]] makes him competent on the battlefield but knowing nothing about how to act like an OrdinaryHighSchoolStudent. Such as [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bb9SmBszsdg jumping from a freaking train.]] While it's moving. "I wanted to get off at this station, it had nothing to do with you."

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* ''LightNovel/FullMetalPanic''. Despite being a trained professional, Sousake Sosuke Sagara fails completely in his attempts to covertly follow Kaname Chidori to guard her from kidnappers, as his [[NoSocialSkills nature]] makes him competent on the battlefield but knowing nothing about how to act like an OrdinaryHighSchoolStudent. Such as [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bb9SmBszsdg jumping from a freaking train.]] While it's moving. "I wanted to get off at this station, it had nothing to do with you.""
** The novels would later go on to state that Sosuke's ''real'' job is to be the obvious bodyguard, so that anyone going after Kaname will focus on him and miss Wraith.
14th Feb '17 9:36:56 PM DanaO
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Added DiffLines:

** On the other side of the coin, it's possible to go back over the whole thing and see that Doppel (on her own initiative and primarily to watch her teammates screw up the job) is successfully tagging along on ''every one'' of these ostentatious dates.
12th Nov '16 4:58:17 PM nombretomado
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* ''[=McQ=]'' (1974). JohnWayne (following directly behind in a conspicuous [[CoolCar green Pontiac Firebird Trans Am]]) tails a Bureau of Narcotics van carrying $2 million worth of confiscated drugs to the top secret location where the drugs are to be burned.

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* ''[=McQ=]'' (1974). JohnWayne Creator/JohnWayne (following directly behind in a conspicuous [[CoolCar green Pontiac Firebird Trans Am]]) tails a Bureau of Narcotics van carrying $2 million worth of confiscated drugs to the top secret location where the drugs are to be burned.
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