History Main / NeedleInAStackOfNeedles

4th Feb '17 8:19:08 PM hullflyer
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* Subverted in ''Franchise/{{Superman}}'': During John Byrne's run on the title, ComicBook/TheJoker kidnapped Lois Lane, Perry White and Jimmy Olson, then sent a message to Superman that his friends were trapped in lead-lined coffins in three different locations in the city, where they would suffocate if Superman didn't act fast. Joker actually had Superman's friends with him on a train heading out of Metroplolis; he reasoned that the lead lined coffins would make finding the coffins difficult for Superman since his x-ray vision wouldn't work on them, but instead the opposite proved to be true; the lead lined coffins stuck out like sore thumbs. He was able to find Joker and his hostages with ease from there.

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* Subverted in ''Franchise/{{Superman}}'': During John Byrne's run on the title, ComicBook/TheJoker kidnapped Lois Lane, Perry White and Jimmy Olson, then sent a message to Superman that his friends were trapped in lead-lined coffins in three different locations in the city, where they would suffocate if Superman didn't act fast. Joker actually had Superman's friends with him on a train heading out of Metroplolis; Metropolis; he reasoned that the lead lined coffins would make finding the coffins difficult for Superman since his x-ray vision wouldn't work on them, but instead the opposite proved to be true; the lead lined coffins stuck out like sore thumbs. He was able to find Joker and his hostages with ease from there.
30th Jan '17 5:25:54 PM Kalaong
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* Creator/IsaacAsimov uses this trope in his short story "Little Lost Robot" in the ''Literature/IRobot'' collection. A robot told to "go lose yourself" by an angry engineer does just that, by hiding in a shipment of 62 other robots of the same model as itself, and who differ from the lost robot only in that the lost one was a variant which is only partially ThreeLawsCompliant (designed to permit humans to come to harm through inaction so they could work alongside humans in hazardous environments) and otherwise looks, sounds, and behaves identically to the robots in the shipment. Suffice it to say, Susan Calvin has quite the challenge on her hands in tracking him down - especially as the lost robot not only mimics other robots, but is clever enough to persuade the other robots to mimic ''him''. She finally pulls it off [[spoiler:only by forcing it to outsmart itself. Though the robots naturally protected humans, and the lost robot could disobey to permit humans to be harmed, and persuade other robots to make sacrifices for a future good, it couldn't make the other robots as capable as itself. The lost robot could tell lethal radiation from non-lethal due to experience, and is suckered by a IR hazard the others saw as gamma rays.]] This story is referenced in a scene of the movie "I, Robot" when Sonny pulls the same trick, but it doesn't last because Spooner just starts shooting them and spooks Sonny.

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* Creator/IsaacAsimov uses this trope in his short story "Little Lost Robot" in the ''Literature/IRobot'' collection. A robot told to "go lose yourself" by an angry engineer does just that, by hiding in a shipment of 62 other robots of the same model as itself, and who differ from the lost robot only in that the lost one was a variant which is only partially ThreeLawsCompliant (designed to permit humans to come to harm through inaction so they could work alongside humans in hazardous environments) and otherwise looks, sounds, and behaves identically to the robots in the shipment. Suffice it to say, Susan Calvin has quite the challenge on her hands in tracking him down - especially as the lost robot not only mimics other robots, but is clever enough to persuade the other robots to mimic ''him''. She finally pulls it off [[spoiler:only by forcing it to outsmart itself. Though the robots naturally protected humans, and the lost robot could disobey to permit humans to be harmed, and persuade other robots to make sacrifices for a future good, it couldn't make the other robots as capable as itself. The lost robot could tell lethal radiation from non-lethal due to experience, and is suckered by a IR hazard the others saw as gamma rays.]] This story is referenced in a scene of the movie TheFilmOfTheBook "I, Robot" when Sonny pulls the same trick, but [[spoiler:but it doesn't last because Spooner [[CuttingTheKnot just starts shooting them them]] and spooks Sonny.]]
30th Jan '17 2:50:32 PM StFan
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* In the ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' episode [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS4E18MaudPie "Maud Pie"]], Maud does this as a game. She invites the rest of the ponies to find her "pet rock", Boulder, who's hiding in a field full of rocks. But when the others give up, Maud reveals that Boulder was actually in her pocket the whole time.
** In the episode ''Stranger than Fanfiction'', Daring Do is at the convention to blend in and be mistaken for another cosplayer. Dr. Caballaron, who follows her, is likewise hidden amongst cosplayers when Rainbow Dash tries to warn someone about him, but he's confused and dismayed at all the ponies dressing up as him.

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* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'':
**
In the ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' episode [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS4E18MaudPie "Maud Pie"]], "[[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS4E18MaudPie Maud Pie]]", Maud does this as a game. She invites the rest of the ponies to find her "pet rock", Boulder, who's hiding in a field full of rocks. But when the others give up, Maud reveals that Boulder was actually in her pocket the whole time.
** In the episode ''Stranger than Fanfiction'', "Stranger Than Fan Fiction", Daring Do is at the convention to blend in and be mistaken for another cosplayer. Dr. Caballaron, who follows her, is likewise hidden amongst cosplayers when Rainbow Dash tries to warn someone about him, but he's confused and dismayed at all the ponies dressing up as him.
29th Jan '17 12:02:39 PM justthereforthecode
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[[folder:Toys]]
* Anyone who's ever owned {{Lego}} sets and kept all the loose pieces in a big box or plastic tub can tell you how hard it is digging around for the one piece you're looking for, never mind if you need a piece of a specific color.
[[/folder]]
18th Jan '17 2:36:23 PM cybertoy0
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* In one early ''ComicBook/{{Batman}}'' had Joker offering his services as a criminal superhero; In exchange for some loot, he would rescue crooks pinned down by the cops during heists. He stashed "Joker signals" at every potential robbery target in Gotham, and even built Joker-versions of Batman's vehicles. In order to get him, Batman discovered the signals and had the cops set off all of them; as a result, Joker couldn't figure out which one had the most loot to take a percentage of. Naturally, the first stop he made had Batman waiting to collar him.
13th Jan '17 4:17:41 PM Bissek
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* The novel and various film adaptations of ''Literature/TheTwelveChairs'' are about the search for a fortune in jewelry that was sewn into the cushions of one of a dozen externally identical chairs.
7th Jan '17 10:05:10 AM nombretomado
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* At one point in ''LauraBow: The Dagger of Amon Ra'', the stolen dagger is hidden in the museum gift shop in a row of replica daggers. You can tell it's the real one because it doesn't have "Made in Pittsburgh" engraved on it.

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* At one point in ''LauraBow: ''VideoGame/LauraBow: The Dagger of Amon Ra'', the stolen dagger is hidden in the museum gift shop in a row of replica daggers. You can tell it's the real one because it doesn't have "Made in Pittsburgh" engraved on it.
31st Dec '16 10:02:10 PM JapaneseTeeth
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* ''Manga/MyMonsterSecret'' spoofs this when [[TheGadfly Akane]] steals Mikan's glasses. First, Akane attempts to hide the glasses by throwing out dozens of pairs of glasses. It fails because aside from the other pairs being completely different designs, she's ''wearing'' the glasses she stole. Then she tries again, by replicating [[MesACrowd herself]]. It fails again because none of the clones are actually wearing the glasses. She gets it right on [[RuleOfThree the third try]].
11th Dec '16 8:54:21 PM Angeldeb82
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* Subverted in ''ComicBook/{{Superman}}'': During John Byrne's run on the title, ComicBook/{{Joker}} kidnapped Lois Lane, Perry White and Jimmy Olson, then sent a message to Superman that his friends were trapped in lead-lined coffins in three different locations in the city, where they would suffocate if Superman didn't act fast. Joker actually had Superman's friends with him on a train heading out of Metroplolis; he reasoned that the lead lined coffins would make finding the coffins difficult for Superman since his x-ray vision wouldn't work on them, but instead the opposite proved to be true; the lead lined coffins stuck out like sore thumbs. He was able to find Joker and his hostages with ease from there.

to:

* Subverted in ''ComicBook/{{Superman}}'': ''Franchise/{{Superman}}'': During John Byrne's run on the title, ComicBook/{{Joker}} ComicBook/TheJoker kidnapped Lois Lane, Perry White and Jimmy Olson, then sent a message to Superman that his friends were trapped in lead-lined coffins in three different locations in the city, where they would suffocate if Superman didn't act fast. Joker actually had Superman's friends with him on a train heading out of Metroplolis; he reasoned that the lead lined coffins would make finding the coffins difficult for Superman since his x-ray vision wouldn't work on them, but instead the opposite proved to be true; the lead lined coffins stuck out like sore thumbs. He was able to find Joker and his hostages with ease from there.



*** Naturally the NightmareFuel comes roaring back in the last ten minutes. Why? [[spoiler: Because ''[[FlockOfWolves all]]'' [[FlockOfWolves the statues are angels.]]]]

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*** Naturally the NightmareFuel comes roaring back in the last ten minutes. Why? [[spoiler: Because ''[[FlockOfWolves all]]'' [[FlockOfWolves the statues are angels.]]]]angels]].]]



*** The Doctor [[LampshadeHanging lampshades]] it with a brilliant example of {{Metaphorgotten}} on top:

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*** The Doctor [[LampshadeHanging lampshades]] {{lampshade|Hanging}}s it with a brilliant example of {{Metaphorgotten}} on top:



* One of the most [[GuideDangIt mind-bending]] puzzles in the {{Infocom}} text adventure ''VideoGame/{{Spellbreaker}}'' required you to find a featureless magical cube hidden with eleven other featureless nonmagical cubes- using only 3 spells. In a variant of the classic coin-weighing puzzle, you had to work out whether the real cube glowed more or less brightly than the fakes when you cast a certain spell by arranging the cubes into piles to use a process of elimination to find the right one. It was AGONY.

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* One of the most [[GuideDangIt mind-bending]] puzzles in the {{Infocom}} Creator/{{Infocom}} text adventure ''VideoGame/{{Spellbreaker}}'' ''[[VideoGame/{{Enchanter}} Spellbreaker]]'' required you to find a featureless magical cube hidden with eleven other featureless nonmagical cubes- cubes - using the JINDAK spell only 3 spells.three times. In a variant of the classic coin-weighing puzzle, you had to work out whether the real cube glowed more or less brightly than the fakes when you cast a certain spell by arranging the cubes into piles to use a process of elimination to find the right one. It was AGONY.



* You can purposefully invoke this in ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion'''s Shivering Isles expansion, where in one quest, you're tasked with stopping several treasure hunters convinced they've found a ruin filled with riches when they've really stumbled into the fringes of the Realm of Madness. In one room, they become trapped in a cage with a big, obvious lock. You can either fire a magical beam into the cage, killing one adventurer instantly, or you can dump ''thousands'' of identical keys into the cage with them - ''none'' of which will open the lock on the cage. Searching obsessively for the right one will drive one adventurer completely insane before the door opens itself. [[VideogameCrueltyPotential Fun stuff.]]

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* You can purposefully invoke this in ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion'''s Shivering Isles expansion, where in one quest, you're tasked with stopping several treasure hunters convinced they've found a ruin filled with riches when they've really stumbled into the fringes of the Realm of Madness. In one room, they become trapped in a cage with a big, obvious lock. You can either fire a magical beam into the cage, killing one adventurer instantly, or you can dump ''thousands'' of identical keys into the cage with them - ''none'' of which will open the lock on the cage. Searching obsessively for the right one will drive one adventurer completely insane before the door opens itself. [[VideogameCrueltyPotential [[VideoGameCrueltyPotential Fun stuff.]]



* In the first ''{{Scribblenauts}}'' game, there is a puzzle where, when the answer is found, it causes a large number of [[PlotCoupon Starite]]s rain down from the sky. One of them is real; the rest are made of plastic, but look identical to the real one. This is easily dealt with by running across the pile, since Maxwell automatically picks up any real Starite he's close enough to.

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* In the first ''{{Scribblenauts}}'' ''VideoGame/{{Scribblenauts}}'' game, there is a puzzle where, when the answer is found, it causes a large number of [[PlotCoupon Starite]]s Starites]] rain down from the sky. One of them is real; the rest are made of plastic, but look identical to the real one. This is easily dealt with by running across the pile, since Maxwell automatically picks up any real Starite he's close enough to.
29th Nov '16 10:55:24 PM LordKelvin
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* ''Film/MinorityReport'': The protagonist escapes by blending into a crowd of people with similar, if not identical, umbrella design when it's raining.

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* ''Film/MinorityReport'': The protagonist escapes by blending John Anderton, fleeing from his fellow Precrime officers with the aid of the precog he kidnapped, does this with an umbrella, walking out into a crowd of people with similar, if not identical, umbrella design when the street while it's raining.raining, just as his pursuers run out to a balcony and look down.
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