Created By: Ettina on June 25, 2012 Last Edited By: Arivne on August 20, 2012

Losing Your Talent

A person acquires a disability that negates their biggest talent

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It can be a good source of angst to have a character acquire a disability. It's even more so if the character had some kind of special talent, and the disability 'robs them' of this talent.

Some examples I can think of:
  • Alice in Still Alice is a university professor, a very intelligent woman, until she gets Alzheimer's Disease.
  • One episode of Glee - Rachel gets a temporary form of this by developing laryngitis, and she also meets a football star who became quadriplegic.
  • Robert Munch and Christopher Reeve would both be real-life examples: a quadriplegic stunt man and an author with aphasia.
Community Feedback Replies: 15
  • June 25, 2012
    HeartOfAnAstronaut
    Ironic Disability?

    I swear I've seen an episode of some medical drama where a piano playing boy gets some nerve in his hand ruined in surgery. Maybe Scrubs, anyone?

    • In The Time Travellers Wife, Henry's alcoholic father (and ex-classical musician) drinks until he can no longer play the violin because his hands shake too badly.
  • June 25, 2012
    KTera
    Possibly subverted with Emi from Katawa Shoujo? She's a runner who loses her legs in a car accident, but after spending a year learning to run on prosthetic legs she's even faster than she was before.
  • June 25, 2012
    TonyG
    ^^I believe it was MASH, although Scrubs may have done a variation on that as well.
    • Ludwig Van Beethoven. One of the greatest composers of all time eventually became unable to hear a note of his own music.
  • June 26, 2012
    Arivne
    ^ ^^^ Yes, it was an episode of MASH titled "Morale Victory". A soldier (who is also a concert pianist) has his right hand permanently damaged by shrapnel, and he believes he must give up piano playing. Major Winchester provides him with piano pieces written to be performed with the left hand, as well as encouragement to continue.
  • June 26, 2012
    randomsurfer
    Another MASH example was a football hero who loses his leg. See also Career Ending Injury.

    Christopher Reeve wasn't a stuntman, he was an actor.
  • August 18, 2012
    DarkerShining
    Puella Magi Madoka Magica has Kyosuke, a violinist who had an injured wrist that would've prevented him ever playing the violin again. However, Sayaka used her wish to heal him when she contracted with Kyubey and became a Magical Girl.
  • August 18, 2012
    Lumpenprole
    In the novel "Flying Dutch", the captain and crew of the Flying Dutchman gained immortality via an elixir of life; but as a side effect they smelled so vile that they had to remain at sea far away from other humans, thus losing most of the advantages of their perpetual life.

  • August 18, 2012
    jatay3
    Subverted in Soul Surfer.
  • August 18, 2012
    randomsurfer
    In the backstory to the film Tortilla Soup Martin is a chef who semi-retired due to a psychosomatic loss of taste after his wife died. At the end of the film he gets his sense of taste back. Torilla Soup was a remake of the film Eat Drink Man Woman but as I haven't seen that I don't know whether the same plot point holds.
  • August 19, 2012
    captainsandwich
  • August 19, 2012
    Earnest
    On the plus side, may be overcome by a Deaf Composer.
  • August 19, 2012
    cygnavamp
    Shouldn't the title be "Losing Your Talent"?
  • August 19, 2012
    Arivne
    I have changed the title to Losing Your Talent.
  • August 20, 2012
    polarbear2217
    In the Twilight Zone "Mr. Denton on Doomsday", an over-the-hill gunslinger and a rising gunslinger shoot each other in the hand during a showdown, which prevents either from continuing gunslinging.
  • August 20, 2012
    Topazan
    When intentionally inflicted on someone it's Crippling The Competition.
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