Created By: MaciekOst on April 28, 2011 Last Edited By: Arivne on May 1, 2017

Parody Paradox

When both the inspiration and the parodies appear alongside.

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Up for Grabs. Exactly what I said in the laconic description. Most of the time we assume a parody to be a Fictional Counterpart to the original, but this is when both of them appear in a work.

This is likely not a good trope. Related to Celebrity Paradox.



Western Animation
  • South Park
    • It first has Scientology parodied as "Blainetology" and then it shows the real thing in "Trapped in The Closet", and then it makes another Fictional Counterpart in "The Return of the Chef".
    • A more minor one, it once used a song which parodies "Push It To The Limit" and then the original.
  • Drawn Together
    • Stimpy appears in one episode even though it features a character who parodies him.
    • The various Disney princesses upon which Clara is based on.

Community Feedback Replies: 15
  • April 28, 2011
    Hahahaha I love your last sentence.

    I'm thinking this is not tropeable. Yes it happens from time to time, but it isn't really a trope (when it happens, the creators aren't drawing from a common inspiration or anything and it may not even happen intentionally).
  • April 28, 2011
    In Last Action Hero, Arnold Schwarzenegger plays Jack Slater, a parody of his movie action hero roles (and a parody of all action heroes) and he also plays himself, in a sort of parody of himself. And they both meet each other.
  • April 28, 2011
    Within The Simpsons, the character of Mc Bain is established as a parody of Arnold Schwarzenegger. However, in The Movie it is Schwarzenegger himself who appears as the president of the United States, not Mc Bain.

    I think this can be a trope, by the way.
  • April 28, 2011
    Related to Celebrity Paradox
  • April 30, 2011
    Zapp Branigan of Futurama is a parody of William Shatner/Captain Kirk, but Shatner himself shows up for an episode in which Brannigan is also present (although the two don't talk to each other). There's definitely similar jokes used for both the parody and the real person playing himself, although Shatner, unlike Brannigan, is shown to have some positive qualities.
  • April 30, 2011
    • Slings And Arrows is set at a Fictional Counterpart of the Stratford Shakespeare Festival; a throwaway line in the third season reveals that the actual Stratford Festival also exists in its universe.
  • April 30, 2011
    One example I noted under Celebrity Paradox that might fit this better, and it's this done for legal reasons. In the novels of Anthony Trollope, there are a number of characters very closely based on real life politicians, and not always depicted positively. While it's pretty clear who is supposed to be who, there's the occasional reference to the real people for plausible deniability.

    Similarly, in Citizen Kane, Kaine is blatantly based on William Randolph Hearst, but in a futile effort to stop Hearst from going after the film, Kaine gets a line referring to Hearst as being a separate person/fellow captain of industry.
  • May 5, 2011
  • May 5, 2011
    Rob Liefeld's new character Bloodwolf first appears in the Orphaned Series Darker Image. He's basically Darker And Edgier Lobo (who was a Darker And Edgier parody in the first place). And then Lobo walks by.
  • May 5, 2011
    ^I can see example like this (or Last Action Hero) counting, where it's an intentional gag.

    The problem I have is examples like South Park where in one episode, they have a fictional science fiction religion and then in a completely different episode they have actual Scientology. This is more of a coincidence and isn't tropeable. It's not even really related to the Celebrity Paradox, since the parody and the real thing aren't neccesarily mutually exclusive.
  • November 14, 2016
    Just a variant of Celebrity Paradox
  • November 16, 2016
  • April 30, 2017
    Descripton needs a little work though. I like to portmanteau things. That's why it's "Parodox"
  • April 30, 2017
    ^ It's way vaguer than this already vague title.

    I suggest "Parody-meets-original hijinks" or something like that.
  • May 1, 2017
    • Examples section
      • Added a line separating the Description and Examples section.
      • Added the word "Examples".
      • Added media section titles.
      • Namespaced work and Creator names.
      • Italicized work names and put episode titles in quotes as per How To Write An Example - Emphasis For Work Names.
      • Corrected spelling (princessed).
      • Added some text to the Spaceballs example so it wouldn't be a Zero Context Example.
      • Alphabetized media sections.