History Main / SpotTheImposter

26th Jun '16 5:42:04 PM ANTMuddle
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Typically, the situation will involve the impostor and the real person standing side-by-side, both claiming to be the real one, and the other heroes must use their wits to identify who is who, usually by finding a quality that the real person doesn't have (in comedic examples, a positive quality). Or the real person may ask that their friend [[KillUsBoth shoot both of them]] just to guarantee they get the imposter (and it's almost inevitable if the person has a [[HealingFactor super-healing power]]), which usually results in the heroes shooting the other one, because the impostor wouldn't be noble enough to suggest making the HeroicSacrifice. This is often parodied these days where the imposter suggests it, [[GenreSavvy knowing they'll assume the noble act to mark them out as the original]] -- and sometimes double-parodied when this ends up outing him as the fake since [[{{Jerkass}} the real person wouldn't be so noble]].

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Typically, the situation will involve the impostor and the real person standing side-by-side, both claiming to be the real one, and the other heroes must use their wits to identify who is who, usually by finding a quality that the real person faker doesn't have (in comedic examples, a positive quality). Or the real person may ask that their friend [[KillUsBoth shoot both of them]] just to guarantee they get the imposter (and it's almost inevitable if the person has a [[HealingFactor super-healing power]]), which usually results in the heroes shooting the other one, because the impostor wouldn't be noble enough to suggest making the HeroicSacrifice. This is often parodied these days where the imposter suggests it, [[GenreSavvy knowing they'll assume the noble act to mark them out as the original]] -- and sometimes double-parodied when this ends up outing him as the fake since [[{{Jerkass}} the real person wouldn't be so noble]].
26th Jun '16 2:06:56 AM EDP
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* [[Comicbook/MickeyMouseComicUniverse Mickey Mouse]] stories featuring [[MasterOfDisguise Miklos, the Grey Mouse]] elevated this trope to an art form, as Miklos can do a ''perfect'' Mickey Mouse impression, and looks just like him with grey fur (hence the nickname):
** In his debut in "Mickey's Dangerous Double" the police gets the both of them and promptly enlists Pluto, only to find him out of commission due [[ItMakesSenseInContext his crush on a mannequin dog]]. They quickly asks Minnie, who first tells the right one (that the reader can recognize from the clothes) but then changes her mind. Numerous other attempts follow (including one relying on Mickey loving a cake that give a stomacache to everyone else that ''should'' have worked, except O'Hara got them the wrong cake, resulting in a double stomacache) until they end in a rainwater tank, at which point the Grey Mouse is unmasked thanks to him using ''washable dye'';
** In "Mickey Mouse and the Grey Scourge", Mickey's friends are enlisted to try and spot the right one but they fail (with Minnie once again getting the real Mickey but getting convinced by Clarabelle it was the other), and are on the verge of a fight when Casey shows up with Pluto, who this time is ''not'' out of commission;
** In the 2014 story "Mickey Mouse and the Seven Boglins" Miklos has a more complex plan than usual, and for a while even ''Mickey'' is convinced of being the imposter (it helped he had been duped into taking fake vitamin pills that dyed his fur red and kept him unable to think straight), with the reader not being informed of which one is the fake until Minnie, once again, realizes the switch. This time, however, spotting the imposter is easy, as Minnie (who has evidently learned from the previous encounters) has tricked the fake into getting a tattoo and when comes the time to tell the right one she's quick to ask which one has it.

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* [[Comicbook/MickeyMouseComicUniverse Mickey Mouse]] Examples from the ComicBook/DisneyMouseAndDuckComics:
** Comicbook/MickeyMouseComicUniverse
stories featuring [[MasterOfDisguise Miklos, the Grey Mouse]] elevated this trope to an art form, as Miklos can do a ''perfect'' Mickey Mouse impression, and looks just like him with grey fur (hence the nickname):
** *** In his debut in "Mickey's Dangerous Double" the police gets the both of them and promptly enlists Pluto, only to find him out of commission due [[ItMakesSenseInContext his crush on a mannequin dog]]. They quickly asks Minnie, who first tells the right one (that the reader can recognize from the clothes) but then changes her mind. Numerous other attempts follow (including one relying on Mickey loving a cake that give a stomacache to everyone else that ''should'' have worked, except O'Hara got them the wrong cake, resulting in a double stomacache) until they end in a rainwater tank, at which point the Grey Mouse is unmasked thanks to him using ''washable dye'';
** *** In "Mickey Mouse and the Grey Scourge", Mickey's friends are enlisted to try and spot the right one but they fail (with Minnie once again getting the real Mickey but getting convinced by Clarabelle it was the other), and are on the verge of a fight when Casey shows up with Pluto, who this time is ''not'' out of commission;
** *** In the 2014 story "Mickey Mouse and the Seven Boglins" Miklos has a more complex plan than usual, and for a while even ''Mickey'' is convinced of being the imposter (it helped he had been duped into taking fake vitamin pills that dyed his fur red and kept him unable to think straight), with the reader not being informed of which one is the fake until Minnie, once again, realizes the switch. This time, however, spotting the imposter is easy, as Minnie (who has evidently learned from the previous encounters) has tricked the fake into getting a tattoo and when comes the time to tell the right one she's quick to ask which one has it.it.
** In the ComicBook/DisneyDucksComicUniverse this trope usually involves Paperinik stories, as he is a MasterOfDisguise and some of his opponents are just as good-or, in one case, ''better'':
*** The disguise expert better than Paperinik is the Trasformista (that's Italian for [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Master of Disguise]]), whose modus operandi was to disguise himself as the target of his heist, walk in his home/business, and rob them blind. He was first arrested when he disguised himself as Donald, who he had heard was out of town, not knowing that ''Donald is actually Paperinik's SecretIdentity and he had said he would be out of town to cover for his absence while he surveilled the place as Paperinik'' (cue a bemused Paperinik fly in, arrest and unmask the fake, and leave).
*** In a ''ComicBook/PaperinikNewAdventures'' story he infiltrated the presidential palace of [[{{Ruritania}} Belgravia]] as Grigorji Grimka, the son of th president, who was collaborating after being nearly kidnapped by Belgravian rogues... Except Grigorji was an idiot who forgot to tell Paperinik he's in an ArrangedMarriage with a woman who is allergic to flowers (hence she spots him. Thankfully, she's a loyalist), he has two ''pet tigers'' (who promptly recognize the switch from his smell and attack), and [[spoiler:he's actually in love with one of his bodyguards, [[NiceJobBreakingItHero who he told about the switch, without knowing she's with the traitors]]]]. Also, in the same story, [[spoiler: president Nestor Grimka himself has been replaced by the traitors' leader because, [[PragmaticEvil as much as Belgravia is devoted to cause wars to sell weapons and possibly conquer the world he's not stupid enough to want his market destroyed]] and [[EvenEvilHasStandards draws the line at some kinds of crimes]], [[NiceJobBreakingItHero and when he sees the fake Grigorji coming to Belgravia he's convinced the rogues have his son hostage and gives up the information they need to proceed with their plan]].
21st Jun '16 11:44:11 PM PaulA
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Added DiffLines:

[[folder:Fairy Tales]]
* In "Literature/TheTwoBrothers", collected by Creator/TheBrothersGrimm, two identical twin brothers (with matching {{Loyal Animal Companion}}s) set out to seek their fortunes; one has no particular luck, while the other rescues a princess from a dragon and marries her. When the brothers are reunited at the end, they decide for a laugh to go together to the court and not tell anyone which is which. Even the princess can't tell the men apart, but she identifies her husband after taking a close look at their animal companions. (Her husband's animals are wearing neck decorations she gave them after they helped kill the dragon.)
[[/folder]]
22nd May '16 1:52:17 AM Faolin
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** In "The Zygon Invasion" a group of UNIT mooks prove spectacularly bad at this. When attacking a church they know to be a stronghold of the titular shapeshifters, the whole squad finds it to be full of their family and loved ones (who shouldn't even be in the country). Their leader's "mother" proves unable to answer basic about his life, but he can't bring himself to shoot her and [[TooDumbToLive orders his men to disarm and follow her inside the building anyway.]] [[TotalPartyKill Three guesses what happens.]]

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** In "The Zygon Invasion" a group of UNIT mooks prove spectacularly bad at this. When attacking a church they know to be a stronghold of the titular shapeshifters, the whole squad finds it to be full of their family and loved ones (who shouldn't even be in the country). Their leader's "mother" proves unable to answer basic questions about his life, but he can't bring himself to shoot her and [[TooDumbToLive orders his men to disarm and follow her inside the building anyway.]] [[TotalPartyKill Three guesses what happens.]]
17th May '16 4:18:38 AM StarTropes
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** In another episode, Pikachu is surrounded by many ghostly illusions of Ash, with the real one lost among them. He settles the matter by shocking all of them, making them disappear until only the real Ash is left.



* ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'' did an {{Arc}} about shapeshifting imposters. However, the first episode in the arc ("The Adversary") was actually a subversion. A Founder traps the crew inside a ship it controls, then tries to pick off the crew one by one. The climax of the episode is O'Brien seeing two Odos, who demand he pick the real one. O'Brien shrugs, says "I've got better things to do than play 'choose the changeling'." and begins reprogramming the ship's computer -- which forces the imposter to reveal himself by attacking.

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* ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'' did an {{Arc}} about shapeshifting imposters. However, the first episode in the arc ("The Adversary") was actually a subversion. A Founder traps the crew inside a ship it controls, then tries to pick off the crew one by one. The climax of the episode is O'Brien seeing two Odos, who demand he pick the real one. O'Brien shrugs, says "I've got better things to do than play 'choose the changeling'." and has his assistant hold them both at gunpoint while he begins reprogramming the ship's computer -- which forces the imposter to reveal himself by attacking.
13th May '16 2:18:32 PM margdean56
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* An early Franchise/{{Batman}} serial strip had Batman disguise himself as a mob boss in order to free Robin - unfortunately, the real one came back earlier than expected, ''and'' the boss' henchmen had recently decided to get rid of their BadBoss.

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* An early Franchise/{{Batman}} serial strip had Batman disguise himself as a mob boss in order to free Robin - -- unfortunately, the real one came back earlier than expected, ''and'' the boss' henchmen had recently decided to get rid of their BadBoss.



* A heartbreaking one during Marvel's ''ComicBook/SecretInvasion'' (the main mini-series): In Issue #8, BackFromTheDead ComicBook/{{Mockingbird}} is confronted by her ex-husband, Comicbook/{{Hawkeye}} (who, at the time, was presumed dead and operating as masked hero Ronin). To prove she wasn't a Skrull, Hawkeye states a certain date, and asks Mockingbird what it meant. Turns out, Mockinbird had a miscarriage on that date and only she and Hawkeye ever knew she was even pregnant. This also served to tell Mockingbird who was under the Ronin mask.

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* A heartbreaking one during Marvel's ''ComicBook/SecretInvasion'' (the main mini-series): In Issue #8, BackFromTheDead ComicBook/{{Mockingbird}} is confronted by her ex-husband, Comicbook/{{Hawkeye}} (who, at the time, was presumed dead and operating as masked hero Ronin). To prove she wasn't a Skrull, Hawkeye states a certain date, and asks Mockingbird what it meant. Turns out, Mockinbird Mockingbird had a miscarriage on that date and only she and Hawkeye ever knew she was even pregnant. This also served to tell Mockingbird who was under the Ronin mask.



* ''ComicBook/PowerPack'': in "X-Men & Power Pack #2" of the all-ages series, Mystique impersonates Jack Power in order to escape the heroes. At Beast's suggestion that Mystique can only mimic a person's apperance but not their powers, Katie fires a salvo of energy balls at both Jacks, forcing the real Jack to assume his cloud form out of defence while Mystique remains the same.

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* ''ComicBook/PowerPack'': in "X-Men & Power Pack #2" of the all-ages series, Mystique impersonates Jack Power in order to escape the heroes. At Beast's suggestion that Mystique can only mimic a person's apperance appearance but not their powers, Katie fires a salvo of energy balls at both Jacks, forcing the real Jack to assume his cloud form out of in defence while Mystique remains the same.
19th Apr '16 7:11:53 PM WillKeaton
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* ''Series/StargateSG1'' has the episode "Holiday", where Daniel is tricked into switching bodies with an aging scientist who wants to have a little fun before he dies. Though the two are different characters, they are both played by the same actor.

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* ''Series/StargateSG1'' has the episode "Holiday", where Daniel is tricked into switching bodies with an aging scientist who wants intends to have a little fun before he dies.use Daniel's body to continue his crusade against the Goa'uld. Though the two are different characters, they are both played by the same actor.
19th Apr '16 7:09:44 PM WillKeaton
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* In [[http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/FanFic/Sols06sPhineasAndFerbVerse PnF: Stolen Identity]], Ferb is replaced by a double for some unexplained but evil purpose. Said double spends the rest of the story [[OOCIsSeriousBusiness acting so unlike Ferb that Phineas eventually thinks he's lost his mind]] and becomes completely terrified of his beloved stepbrother...meaning he fails this trope for most of the story. Fortunately he eventually figures out which is the real Ferb and the pair escape, leaving the evil double [[WhatHappenedToTheMouse with the invention he needed Phineas to build for a reason we're never told]].

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* In [[http://tvtropes.''[[http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/FanFic/Sols06sPhineasAndFerbVerse PnF: Stolen Identity]], Identity,]]'' Ferb is replaced by a double for some unexplained but evil purpose. Said double spends the rest of the story [[OOCIsSeriousBusiness acting so unlike Ferb that Phineas eventually thinks he's lost his mind]] and becomes completely terrified of his beloved stepbrother...meaning he fails this trope for most of the story. Fortunately he eventually figures out which is the real Ferb and the pair escape, leaving the evil double [[WhatHappenedToTheMouse with the invention he needed Phineas to build for a reason we're never told]].
14th Apr '16 9:50:56 PM FordPrefect
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* The infamous Wrestling/{{n|ewWorldorder}}Wo Sting angle in Wrestling/{{WCW}} where the nWo introduced an impostor Wrestling/{{Sting}} around the same time the real Sting had change his look, meaning no one recognized him at first.

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* The infamous Wrestling/{{n|ewWorldorder}}Wo Sting angle in Wrestling/{{WCW}} where the nWo introduced an impostor Wrestling/{{Sting}} around the same time the real Sting had change changed his look, meaning no one recognized him at first.
14th Apr '16 9:45:07 PM FordPrefect
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** A variation of the above gambit happened in the episode "What Are Little Girls Made Of?": The villain creates an android clone of Kirk with a copied mind, but Kirk fills his mind with anti-Vulcan racist thoughts when the copying procedure is happening to contaminate the android's mind. This causes the android to insult Spock, which causes Spock to realize that the android is an impostor.

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** A variation of the above gambit happened in the episode "What Are Little Girls Made Of?": The villain creates an android clone of Kirk with a copied mind, but Kirk fills his mind with anti-Vulcan racist thoughts when during the copying procedure is happening to contaminate the android's mind. This causes the android to insult Spock, which causes Spock to realize that the android is an impostor.



*** An asexual instance of FreudWasRight? Id and Superego split from the Ego? Oh hey, Incredibly Lame Pun.

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*** An asexual instance of FreudWasRight? Id and Superego split from the Ego? Oh hey, Incredibly Lame Pun.IncrediblyLamePun.
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