History Main / WantingIsBetterThanHaving

13th Nov '16 5:37:13 AM Aquila89
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* "After You Get What You Want You Don't Want It", a song from the 1920s, exposes the trope perfectly.

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* "After You Get What You Want You Don't Want It", a song from the 1920s, 1920s by Music/IrvingBerlin, exposes the trope perfectly.
8th Nov '16 7:59:12 PM merotoker
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* In ''Manga/DeathNote'', Light gets all he ever dreamed of midway through the series. [[spoiler:L is dead, so all Light needs to do is slowly develop his [[{{Dystopia}} shiny new world]] and fit himself for his [[AGodAmI new hat]]]]. Unfortunately, VictoryIsBoring--so boring that when [[spoiler:Mello and Near eventually show up to give him a really bad time]], he's overjoyed!

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* In ''Manga/DeathNote'', Light gets all he ever dreamed of midway through the series. [[spoiler:L is dead, so all Light needs to do is slowly develop his [[{{Dystopia}} shiny new world]] and fit himself for his [[AGodAmI new hat]]]]. hat]].]] Unfortunately, VictoryIsBoring--so boring that when [[spoiler:Mello and Near eventually show up to give him a really bad time]], he's overjoyed!



* The ending of ''{{Manga/xxxHolic}}''. Watanuki is perfectly content to wait forever for Yuuko, even though he knows she likely will ''never'' return, and even if she does, almost certainly not as how he knew her. Whether he wants to avoid all the RealityBreakingParadox consequences of Clow's wish or prevent the creation of another Ass-Chin or minimize his own impact on the multiverse, or whether CLAMP just wrote another Gainax Ending, we can't really be too sure. Nothing is sensible by this point. If Yuuko could die and move [[AscendToAHigherPlaneOfExistence on to "where Clow was"]], the guy actually has a much better chance of seeing her if he'd stayed mortal and let himself die and pass on himself.
** Ironically it could be Yuuko's final wish that he continue to live that's the one thing keeping him going.

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* The ending of ''{{Manga/xxxHolic}}''. Watanuki is perfectly content to wait forever for Yuuko, even though he knows she likely will ''never'' return, and even if she does, almost certainly not as how he knew her. Whether he wants to avoid all the RealityBreakingParadox consequences of Clow's wish or prevent the creation of another Ass-Chin or minimize his own impact on the multiverse, or whether CLAMP just wrote another Gainax Ending, we can't really be too sure. Nothing is sensible by this point. If Yuuko could die and move [[AscendToAHigherPlaneOfExistence on to "where Clow was"]], the guy actually has a much better chance of seeing her if he'd stayed mortal and let himself die and pass on himself.
**
himself. Ironically it could be Yuuko's final wish that he continue to live that's the one thing keeping him going.



* ''Emperor Doom'': This trope is the basic plotline of the graphic novel. Doctor Doom takes over the world through a worldwide psionic broadcast that brainwashes the whole world into obeying Doom, but found the mundane duties of ruling tedious and was bored by the lack of opposition. When ComicBook/TheAvengers finally broke free and challenged him, Doom practically let them win.

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* ''Emperor Doom'': This trope is the basic plotline of the graphic novel. Doctor Doom ComicBook/DoctorDoom takes over the world through a worldwide psionic broadcast that brainwashes the whole world into obeying Doom, but found the mundane duties of ruling tedious and was bored by the lack of opposition. When ComicBook/TheAvengers finally broke free and challenged him, Doom practically let them win.



* In ''Comicbook/{{Fables}}'' this is a defining trait of Prince Charming (ex-husband to Literature/SnowWhite, Literature/SleepingBeauty and Literature/{{Cinderella}}); he can genuinely love a woman while courting her, but can't actually ''maintain'' a relationship (best exemplified with [[Literature/SleepingBeauty his second wife]]; he woke her with "true love's kiss" and married her, but before long he cheated on her and they divorced fairly quickly). While he seems to have learned his lesson with long-term relationships (he doesn't even attempt them any more, and keeps his dalliances short) this trope rears its head again when he becomes Fabletown's mayor; he is able to charm the electorate into a landslide without much difficulty, but gets hit ''hard'' with TheChainsOfCommanding, piles of paperwork and unfulfillable election promises and he bitterly regrets his decision to run for office.

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* In ''Comicbook/{{Fables}}'' this is a defining trait of Prince Charming (ex-husband to Literature/SnowWhite, Literature/{{Snow White|AndTheSevenDwarfs}}, Literature/SleepingBeauty and Literature/{{Cinderella}}); he can genuinely love a woman while courting her, but can't actually ''maintain'' a relationship (best exemplified with [[Literature/SleepingBeauty his second wife]]; he woke her with "true love's kiss" and married her, but before long he cheated on her and they divorced fairly quickly). While he seems to have learned his lesson with long-term relationships (he doesn't even attempt them any more, and keeps his dalliances short) this trope rears its head again when he becomes Fabletown's mayor; he is able to charm the electorate into a landslide without much difficulty, but gets hit ''hard'' with TheChainsOfCommanding, piles of paperwork and unfulfillable election promises and he bitterly regrets his decision to run for office.



* Said by Grunnel of his and Brox's money in ''Fanfic/WithStringsAttached'': “Getting it was more interesting than having it.” Therefore the four can spend as much of it as they like, and Grunnel and Brox are happy to give it all to the Thirders later on.
** He's an adventure addict, so yeah.

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* Said by Grunnel of his and Brox's money in ''Fanfic/WithStringsAttached'': “Getting it was more interesting than having it.” Therefore the four can spend as much of it as they like, and Grunnel and Brox are happy to give it all to the Thirders later on.
**
on. He's an adventure addict, so yeah.



* ''{{Connecting The Dots}}'': ComicBook/{{The Spectre}} tells Naruto this about his dream to be Hokage since Naruto can't answer [[AndThenWhat what he'd do if he did.]]

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* ''{{Connecting The Dots}}'': ComicBook/{{The Spectre}} ''FanFic/ConnectingTheDots'': ComicBook/TheSpectre tells Naruto this about his dream to be Hokage since Naruto can't answer [[AndThenWhat what he'd do if he did.]]



* ''The Pilgrims Regress'' by Creator/CSLewis: Subverted; one character gives voice to the sentiment that "It's better to travel hopefully than to arrive," as this trope claims. His companion [[AuthorTract (the one whose views on the question agree with Lewis's own)]] responds that a rational person who really believed that the destination isn't as good as the journey would no longer be hoping to arrive at the destination--and thus, would no longer be "traveling hopefully."
** The same argument is made in ''TheGreatDivorce.''

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* ''The Pilgrims Regress'' ''Literature/ThePilgrimsRegress'' by Creator/CSLewis: Subverted; one character gives voice to the sentiment that "It's better to travel hopefully than to arrive," as this trope claims. His companion [[AuthorTract (the one whose views on the question agree with Lewis's own)]] responds that a rational person who really believed that the destination isn't as good as the journey would no longer be hoping to arrive at the destination--and thus, would no longer be "traveling hopefully."
**
" The same argument is made in ''TheGreatDivorce.''Literature/TheGreatDivorce.''



* In Paulo Coelho's ''Literature/TheAlchemist'', Santiago spends a while working for a crystal merchant, whose lifelong dream had been to earn enough money for a pilgrimage to Mecca. By the time Santiago leaves him, the merchant has more than enough money, but has realized that he will never make the pilgrimage; it's the dream of it that gives his life purpose, and he's worried that a real pilgrimage wouldn't measure up to his imagined one.

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* In Paulo Coelho's Creator/PauloCoelho's ''Literature/TheAlchemist'', Santiago spends a while working for a crystal merchant, whose lifelong dream had been to earn enough money for a pilgrimage to Mecca. By the time Santiago leaves him, the merchant has more than enough money, but has realized that he will never make the pilgrimage; it's the dream of it that gives his life purpose, and he's worried that a real pilgrimage wouldn't measure up to his imagined one.



* ''Series/MyNameIsEarl'': when Earl was in a coma he dreamed of being married to Billie (AlyssaMilano) and it was awesome! Then he recovered and actually married her, and it was... not awesome.

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* ''Series/MyNameIsEarl'': when Earl was in a coma he dreamed of being married to Billie (AlyssaMilano) (Creator/AlyssaMilano) and it was awesome! Then he recovered and actually married her, and it was... not awesome.



* Spock to Stonn in the ''{{Series/Star Trek|TheOriginalSeries}}'' episode "[[Recap/StarTrekS2E1AmokTime Amok Time]]", regarding the beautiful but conniving T'Pring: "After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing after all as wanting. It is not logical... but it is often true."
** The ironic point of that entire comment is that it actually is reasonable and logical--T'Pring had in fact just finished displaying the coldly logical difference between having and wanting as her means to get Stonn. Spock's warning to her was far more subtle, that she'd find she screwed herself over as much as she had Spock. (Note in Literature above that this proved to be the case..)

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* Spock to Stonn in the ''{{Series/Star Trek|TheOriginalSeries}}'' episode "[[Recap/StarTrekS2E1AmokTime Amok Time]]", regarding the beautiful but conniving T'Pring: "After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing after all as wanting. It is not logical... but it is often true."
**
" The ironic point of that entire comment is that it actually is reasonable and logical--T'Pring had in fact just finished displaying the coldly logical difference between having and wanting as her means to get Stonn. Spock's warning to her was far more subtle, that she'd find she screwed herself over as much as she had Spock. (Note in Literature above that this proved to be the case..)



* In a Season 1 episode of ''Series/TheTwilightZone'' called "A Nice Place to Visit", Henry "Rocky" Valentine is a crook who gets killed by cops in a shootout and finds out that he can have anything he wants so he [[spoiler: thinks he's in [[{{Heaven}} Heaven]] but he's actually in [[{{Hell}} Hell]].]]

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* In a Season 1 episode of ''Series/TheTwilightZone'' ''Series/{{The Twilight Zone|1959}}'' called "A Nice Place to Visit", Henry "Rocky" Valentine is a crook who gets killed by cops in a shootout and finds out that he can have anything he wants so he [[spoiler: thinks he's in [[{{Heaven}} Heaven]] {{Heaven}} but he's actually in [[{{Hell}} Hell]].]]{{Hell}}]].



* Likewise with ''VideoGame/MightyNo9''. Many saw it as the second coming of ''VideoGame/MegaMan'', especially with Kenji Infune at the helm. But after many delays, especially since it was a Kickstarted funded project, many became irritated at the wait. When if finally did come out three years after it's annoucement, not only was it a buggy mess on some consoles (specifically the Wii U version), but it didn't play any different from a standard Mega Man game.

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* Likewise with ''VideoGame/MightyNo9''. Many saw it as the second coming of ''VideoGame/MegaMan'', especially with Kenji Infune at the helm. But after many delays, especially since it was a Kickstarted funded project, many became irritated at the wait. When if finally did come out three years after it's annoucement, announcement, not only was it a buggy mess on some consoles (specifically the Wii U version), but it didn't play any different from a standard Mega Man game.



* In ''WesternAnimation/ThePowerpuffGirls'', a collector of Powerpuff Girls' merchandise freaks out and turns into a villain when his collection is complete. (Well, ''almost'' complete - he just needs to collect ''the actual Powerpuff Girls''.)
* This is lampshaded by Lisa in ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' where Bart is trying to take her glue simply because she has it, Bart denies it, but to prove her point she hands him the glue, which he then says he doesn't want and hands it back to her.

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* In ''WesternAnimation/ThePowerpuffGirls'', [[TheCollector a collector collector]] of Powerpuff Girls' merchandise freaks out and turns into a villain when his collection is complete. (Well, ''almost'' complete - he just needs to collect ''the actual Powerpuff Girls''.)
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons''
**
This is lampshaded by Lisa in ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' where when Bart is trying to take her glue simply because she has it, it. Bart denies it, but to prove her point she hands him the glue, which he then says he doesn't want and hands it back to her.



* In the third episode of ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' "Ticket Master", the ponies all look forward to attending the Grand Galloping Gala, thinking it will be the best night ever. In the first season finale "Best Night Ever", they attend the gala only to have their hopes crushed. Their attempts to ''make'' the Gala the best night ever lead to chaos and disaster [[spoiler:which Princess Celestia was hoping would happen since it would liven up the normally dull event.]]

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* In the third episode of ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' "Ticket Master", the ponies all look forward to attending the Grand Galloping Gala, thinking it will be the best night ever. In the first season finale "Best Night Ever", they attend the gala only to have their hopes crushed. Their attempts to ''make'' the Gala the best night ever lead to chaos and disaster [[spoiler:which Princess Celestia was hoping would happen since it would liven up the normally dull event.]]event]].



** There's a short in Creator/SethMacfarlane's Cavalcade of Cartoon Comedy (basically a collection of cutaway gags that didn't make it on ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'') where Wile E. Coyote finally catches the Road Runner. He sinks into depression and almost commits suicide because his life lacks direction.

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** * There's a short in Creator/SethMacfarlane's Creator/SethMacFarlane's Cavalcade of Cartoon Comedy (basically a collection of cutaway gags that didn't make it on ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'') where Wile E. Coyote finally catches the Road Runner. He sinks into depression and almost commits suicide because his life lacks direction.



* In a BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor episode of ''WesternAnimation/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles1987'' the Turtles land in a world where they didn't exist, and Krang had no body because Shredder conquered Earth without needing to give Krang a body. The Turtles find Shredder having to deal with the paperwork and responsibilities of managing Earth, and him realizing it was too much for him. When Shredder finds there is an Earth he hadn't conquered, he wants to go there and avoid this one (and possibly warn his counterpart it's not worth fulfilling the ambitions of world conquest).
** It technically counts for the Turtles as well, who ended up in that reality in the first place because they felt that the world would be better off without them. They change their tone when they see how bad things actually would have been if they never existed.
* ''WesternAnimation/GravityFalls'': Grunkle Stan used to have a crush on a waitress named Lazy Susan. After Mabel helped him to get a date with her, he decided that she looked "weird up close," and bailed half-way through.
** A far more tragic example occurs in season two: [[spoiler:After spending thirty years trying to bring back his twin brother Ford from another dimension, Stan finally succeeds, only to be painfully reminded of how strained their relationship was, and still is.]]

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* In a BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor episode of ''WesternAnimation/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles1987'' the Turtles land in a world where they didn't exist, and Krang had no body because Shredder conquered Earth without needing to give Krang a body. The Turtles find Shredder having to deal with the paperwork and responsibilities of managing Earth, and him realizing it was too much for him. When Shredder finds there is an Earth he hadn't conquered, he wants to go there and avoid this one (and possibly warn his counterpart it's not worth fulfilling the ambitions of world conquest).
**
conquest). It technically counts for the Turtles as well, who ended up in that reality in the first place because they felt that the world would be better off without them. [[ItsAWonderfulPlot They change their tone when they see how bad things actually would have been if they never existed.
existed.]]
* ''WesternAnimation/GravityFalls'': ''WesternAnimation/GravityFalls'':
**
Grunkle Stan used to have a crush on a waitress named Lazy Susan. After Mabel helped him to get a date with her, he decided that she looked "weird up close," and bailed half-way through.
** A far more tragic example occurs in season two: [[spoiler:After spending thirty years trying to bring back his twin brother Ford from another dimension, Stan finally succeeds, only to be painfully reminded of how strained their relationship was, and still is.]]is]].



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8th Nov '16 5:33:42 PM Chubzhac
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* Jerry and George from ''Series/{{Seinfeld}}'' are both famous for doing everything they can to keep women their dating from breaking up with them. However, they are so shallow and incapable of commitment that they almost always end their relationships for petty reasons.

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* Jerry and George from ''Series/{{Seinfeld}}'' are both famous for doing everything they can to keep women their they were dating from breaking up with them. However, they are so were both too shallow and incapable of commitment that immature to actually commit to women they wanted to be with and they almost always end ended their relationships for petty reasons.
8th Nov '16 5:24:05 PM Chubzhac
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Added DiffLines:

* Jerry and George from ''Series/{{Seinfeld}}'' are both famous for doing everything they can to keep women their dating from breaking up with them. However, they are so shallow and incapable of commitment that they almost always end their relationships for petty reasons.
20th Oct '16 8:56:17 AM JMQwilleran
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* In the ''Literature/{{Clementine}}'', thanks to her good imagination, Clementine sort of realizes this. In every family meeting, she asks her parents for a gorilla. In ''Clementine and the family Meeting'', she gets excited when she thinks that they actually are buying her one. However, after she finds out that they aren't, she admits in her narration that she's actually somewhat relieved because ever since she got a pet cat, she's realized just how much trouble it would be to clean out the giant litterbox of a gorilla.

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* In the ''Literature/{{Clementine}}'', ''Literature/{{Clementine}}'' books, thanks to her good imagination, Clementine sort of realizes this. In every family meeting, she asks her parents for a gorilla. In ''Clementine and the family Meeting'', she gets excited when she thinks that they actually are buying her one. However, after she finds out that they aren't, she admits in her narration that she's actually somewhat relieved because ever since she got a pet cat, she's realized just how much trouble it would be to clean out the giant litterbox of a gorilla.
20th Oct '16 8:56:01 AM JMQwilleran
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Added DiffLines:

* In the ''Literature/{{Clementine}}'', thanks to her good imagination, Clementine sort of realizes this. In every family meeting, she asks her parents for a gorilla. In ''Clementine and the family Meeting'', she gets excited when she thinks that they actually are buying her one. However, after she finds out that they aren't, she admits in her narration that she's actually somewhat relieved because ever since she got a pet cat, she's realized just how much trouble it would be to clean out the giant litterbox of a gorilla.


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* This is basically the point of the "Waiting for the Fun to Start" song from the 2003 ''WesternAnimation/StrawberryShortcake'' series.
-->''My favorite part of ridin' ain't the sweet sensation / The exhilaration when you feel your beating heart / My favorite part of ridin' is the preparation / While you're waitin' for the fun to start...''
9th Oct '16 8:03:21 PM JMQwilleran
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-->''This is how Samantha knew she was growing up: She didn't cry. She didn't accuse her parents of torturing her or abandoning her. She simply said. "All right. I'll make my own dinner." ... ... When Edison and Trillium returned two hours later, they found a clean house, the dishwasher humming, and Samantha finishing her homework while Penelope dozed on her porch.''

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-->''This is how Samantha knew she was growing up: She didn't cry. She didn't accuse her parents of torturing her or abandoning her. She simply said. "All right. I'll make my own dinner." ... ... When Edison and Trillium returned two hours later, they found a clean house, the dishwasher humming, and Samantha finishing her homework while Penelope dozed on her porch.perch.''
9th Oct '16 7:20:17 PM JMQwilleran
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* In the ''LiteratureMrsPiggleWiggle'' books, the cure for children who want to stay up all night is just to ''let them''. The children end up discovering that it's annoying to be tired all the time during the day, and then when they fall asleep at a movie première they'd been looking forward to for ages, that's the last straw.

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* In the ''LiteratureMrsPiggleWiggle'' books, the *''Literature/MrsPiggleWiggle''
** The
cure for children who want to stay up all night is just to ''let them''. The children end up discovering that it's annoying to be tired all the time during the day, and then when they fall asleep at a movie première they'd been looking forward to for ages, that's the last straw.straw.
** Similarly, in ''Missy Piggle-Wiggle and the Whatever Cure'', which features Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's great-niece Missy Piggle-Wiggle, the Just-One-More-Minute Cure for Samantha Tickle is to simply state that something is about to happen and that there aren't going to be any further reminders, and then stick with that. Well, that and Missy Piggle-Wiggle sending her snarky talking parrot Penelope over to be Samantha's babysitter, as she's going to be spending a lot of time alone. The cure finally works when Samantha's parents have to go to eat out due to the kitchen being a disaster because of Samantha not doing her chores. Samantha is left behind and first fixes herself pasta with vegetables, then scrubs, washes and dries the entire kitchen top-to-bottom.
-->''This is how Samantha knew she was growing up: She didn't cry. She didn't accuse her parents of torturing her or abandoning her. She simply said. "All right. I'll make my own dinner." ... ... When Edison and Trillium returned two hours later, they found a clean house, the dishwasher humming, and Samantha finishing her homework while Penelope dozed on her porch.''
27th Sep '16 8:24:30 PM JMQwilleran
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Added DiffLines:

* In the ''LiteratureMrsPiggleWiggle'' books, the cure for children who want to stay up all night is just to ''let them''. The children end up discovering that it's annoying to be tired all the time during the day, and then when they fall asleep at a movie première they'd been looking forward to for ages, that's the last straw.
7th Sep '16 2:06:53 AM PaulA
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* James Branch Cabell's novels are full of this trope, but the eponymous protagonist of ''Jurgen'' learns it so hard that he walks up to his true love's bed, lifts the cover, and leaves her sleeping. He is, after all, a Monstrous Clever Fellow.

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* James Branch Cabell's Creator/JamesBranchCabell's novels are full of this trope, but the eponymous protagonist of ''Jurgen'' learns it so hard that he walks up to his true love's bed, lifts the cover, and leaves her sleeping. He is, after all, a Monstrous Clever Fellow.
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