History Main / UselessSuperpowers

3rd Jan '18 10:11:46 PM Chabal2
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A form of HoldingBackThePhlebotinum. Compare CoconutSuperpowers and CoolButInefficient. For [[StockSuperpowers superpowers]] that are actually useless, see WhatKindOfLamePowerIsHeartAnyway or BlessedWithSuck. When the uselessness happens just when the power would've been necessary, then it's PlotDrivenBreakdown. When the useless superpower becomes useful, it's ThisLooksLikeAJobForAquaman.

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A form of HoldingBackThePhlebotinum. Compare CoconutSuperpowers CoconutSuperpowers, EmbarrassingSuperpower and CoolButInefficient. For [[StockSuperpowers superpowers]] that are actually useless, see WhatKindOfLamePowerIsHeartAnyway or BlessedWithSuck. When the uselessness happens just when the power would've been necessary, then it's PlotDrivenBreakdown. When the useless superpower becomes useful, it's ThisLooksLikeAJobForAquaman.
10th Sep '17 11:45:11 PM GrammarNavi
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* In the ''Franchise/DragonBall'' TV Special ''Anime/BardockTheFatherOfGoku'', Bardock is granted precognitive powers by the last of a race he was slaughtering. You'd think being able to see the future would be useful, but in this case, the power comes in the forms of random, uncontrolled visions of the future, which mostly consist of [[Manga/DragonBall his youngest son's life on Earth]] and [[CallForward Freeza wiping out Planet Vegeta and all of its people]]. Which was the point. The alien gave Bardock the visions as a form of vengeance, hoping to punish the Saiyajin with dreams of [[YouCantFightFate a future that can't be stopped]]. The only consolation is the knowledge that his son will be the one to defeat Freeza.

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* In the ''Franchise/DragonBall'' TV Special ''Anime/BardockTheFatherOfGoku'', ''Anime/DragonBallZBardockTheFatherOfGoku'', Bardock is granted precognitive powers by the last of a race he was slaughtering. You'd think being able to see the future would be useful, but in this case, the power comes in the forms of random, uncontrolled visions of the future, which mostly consist of [[Manga/DragonBall his youngest son's life on Earth]] and [[CallForward Freeza wiping out Planet Vegeta and all of its people]]. Which was the point. The alien gave Bardock the visions as a form of vengeance, hoping to punish the Saiyajin with dreams of [[YouCantFightFate a future that can't be stopped]]. The only consolation is the knowledge that his son will be the one to defeat Freeza.
14th Aug '17 5:50:13 PM GhostLad
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[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* The movie ''Film/MysteryMen'' relies heavily on useless powers for its plot. All of the main characters are designed to be wannabe superheroes with powers that are only really useful in rare and specific situations. The main super-team consists of a boy can who only turn invisible when nobody's looking[[labelnote:*]]it does let him sneak past automated security[[/labelnote]], a man who gains super strength and dexterity only when he is well and truly furious (slight anger doesn't count), a woman who is a fantastic bowler, a man who is an expert with a shovel, a man who can throw forks particularly well, a man who farts with unique strength, and a man who is "terribly mysterious."
[[/folder]]



* A minor character introduced in ''TabletopGame/TheDresdenFiles RPG'' can see through drywall. Nothing else. Just drywall.



* ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rh_zios6nIU USELESS SUPERPOWERS]]'' is a [=YouTube=] video highlighting some super heroes with really bad powers, such as Semi-Transparent Man, who can still be seen, and AOL, who can connect to the internet (eventually).
17th Jul '17 4:54:41 PM TheSinful
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* [[{{Animorphism}} Animagus]] potential is shown to be quite common (between 1/3 and 1/2 of all wizards and witches) in ''[[https://www.tthfanfic.org/Story-23251-19/BarefootXO+Time+and+Again.htm Time and Again]]'' but most don't bother to pursue it due to either the fact it takes a couple years to learn or the fact their form isn't terribly useful. [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer Xander]] never bothered as his form is a spotted hyena and he [[WhyDidItHaveToBeSnakes has some serious trauma]] related to the animal, while Harry Potter's form is a moth.
1st Jul '17 9:03:44 AM ironballs16
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* In the ''Franchise/DragonBall'' TV Special ''Anime/BardockTheFatherOfGoku'', Bardock is granted precognitive powers by the last of a race he was slaughtering. You'd think being able to see the future would be useful, but in this case, the power comes in the forms of random, uncontrolled visions of the future, which mostly consist of his youngest son's life on Earth and Freeza wiping out Planet Vegeta and all of its people. Which was the point. The alien gave Bardock the visions as a form of vengeance, hoping to punish the Saiyajin with dreams of a future that can't be stopped. The only consolation is the knowledge that his son will be the one to defeat Freeza.

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* In the ''Franchise/DragonBall'' TV Special ''Anime/BardockTheFatherOfGoku'', Bardock is granted precognitive powers by the last of a race he was slaughtering. You'd think being able to see the future would be useful, but in this case, the power comes in the forms of random, uncontrolled visions of the future, which mostly consist of [[Manga/DragonBall his youngest son's life on Earth Earth]] and [[CallForward Freeza wiping out Planet Vegeta and all of its people.people]]. Which was the point. The alien gave Bardock the visions as a form of vengeance, hoping to punish the Saiyajin with dreams of [[YouCantFightFate a future that can't be stopped.stopped]]. The only consolation is the knowledge that his son will be the one to defeat Freeza.
22nd Apr '17 9:00:14 PM nombretomado
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* Most of the powers in ''[[SurvivalOfTheFittest SOTF: Evolution]]''.

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* Most of the powers in ''[[SurvivalOfTheFittest ''[[Roleplay/SurvivalOfTheFittest SOTF: Evolution]]''.
27th Jan '17 5:03:10 PM bwburke94
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* [[WebAnimation/ASDFMovie TREE POWERS, ACTIVATE!]]

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* [[WebAnimation/ASDFMovie ''WebAnimation/{{asdfmovie}}'': TREE POWERS, ACTIVATE!]]ACTIVATE!



* On ''WesternAnimation/TheMagicSchoolBus'', said "magic" was frequently unreliable and the bus was prone to {{Phlebotinum Breakdown}}s, typically in the name of having plots which couldn't be resolved in three seconds. Most notably was in one episode that showed the bus was ''surprisingly'' vulnerable to ''peanut butter'': a messy eater named Junkett, just by eating one while inspecting the vehicle, practically disabled the ''entire engine''. Ms. Frizzle has a near perfect track record of twisting such problems into a lesson so the kids could solve the problems by themselves and learn; it's the Frizzle's CatchPhrase.

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* On ''WesternAnimation/TheMagicSchoolBus'', said "magic" was frequently unreliable and the bus was prone to {{Phlebotinum Breakdown}}s, typically in the name of having plots which couldn't be resolved in three seconds. Most notably was in one episode that showed the bus was ''surprisingly'' surprisingly vulnerable to ''peanut butter'': a messy eater named Junkett, just by eating one while inspecting the vehicle, practically disabled the ''entire engine''. Ms. Frizzle has a near perfect track record of twisting such problems into a lesson so the kids could solve the problems by themselves and learn; it's the Frizzle's CatchPhrase.
27th Jan '17 12:11:44 AM PaulA
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-->-- [[WebAnimation/ZeroPunctuation Yahtzee's]] review on ''{{Scribblenauts}}''

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-->-- [[WebAnimation/ZeroPunctuation Yahtzee's]] review on ''{{Scribblenauts}}''
''VideoGame/{{Scribblenauts}}''
3rd Jan '17 1:37:43 AM TheSinful
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* Both [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer Xander]] and ComicBook/TheFlash have a secondary power in ''[[https://www.fanfiction.net/s/5237318/1/Crush Crush]]'' as a side effect of having "become one with an aspect of reality" ([[GravityMaster Gravity]] and [[SuperSpeed Acceleration]] respectively) in that both can detect breasts with larger ones being easier to detect. Both note that there's never really a use for having breast radar, even on search and rescue operations since it doesn't work on men or young girls.
26th Dec '16 2:10:14 PM MiddleEighth
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[[folder: Fan Works]]
*In ''Fanfic/TheKeysStandAlone: The Soft World'', Ringo discovers early on that nearly everyone and everything of importance is invisible to his mindsight, thus crippling him for most of the story (though he does figure out a workaround to at least see the silhouettes of people and moving objects, and George gets him a pair of binoculars that also help).
[[/folder]]
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.UselessSuperpowers