"I don't mean to rain on your parade, but we both know that an expert is someone from off-planet with a briefcase."
-- Colonel Battleaxe
Meet Mike Johnson. He's an ordinary kid from an ordinary town with a paper route and trouble talking to the girl he likes. He has a dog and a bedroom and a haircut. He seems destined to grow up, go to refrigerator repair school, get married, and never leave the humble town of Everyburg.
Then Mike gets magically whisked off to Magical Land
! He meets elves and fights ogres. He has no frickin' clue how magic works and the social rules and local government are a complete mystery, but thanks to his ability ride a bike and an understanding of how a ground rule double works, he can solve every single problem that has plagued these unwashed heathens for the last five thousand years and rule over them like unto a god. He is... The Wizard From Ordinaryville
The original Trope Namer
was The Wizard of Oz
. A travelling carny from Omaha with a penchant for fake magic gets whisked away in his hot air balloon to a land of real
magic and ends up ruling there as an unquestioned tyrant, the Great and Powerful Oz.
Unlike a Normal Fish in a Tiny Pond
, where the protagonist possesses a power that makes him unique in Magical Land
, The Wizard didn't stand out in Ordinaryville and stands out even less
Compare to Summon Everyman Hero
, where it's explicitly stated that The Everyman
is exactly what Magical Land
needs, and Down the Rabbit Hole
. May have Unfortunate Implications
of the Mighty Whitey
- Adam Strange of DC Comics. Here, he's just a scientist. On Rann, he's the greatest superhero on the planet.
Live Action TV
- The Wizard of Oz
- Josh Kirby Time Warrior. The title character is just an ordinary kid (or so he thinks) until he gets caught up in a journey to save time from some evil maniac in a robotic suit. He saves the day numerous times, despite having virtually no experience wielding a sword, not being particularly intelligent, powerful, or skilled. Subverted later, since it turns out he has time manipulation powers.
- In Mom and Dad Save the World, the title characters prove to be this because the invading aliens' hat is Too Stupid To Live.
- Ash from Army Of Darkness was a department store clerk in our era, yet took this trope Up to Eleven after his encounters with the supernatural and unintended trip though time.
- A very-nearly real life version in The West Wing, when a reporter ends up worshiped as a god by a tribe of cannibals because of his palm pilot's ability to predict the next day's weather.
- The concept album Eldorado by Electric Light Orchestra follows a man on a mission to escape the real world and take up permanent residence in his dream world so he can be this.
- In The Simpsons episode "Lisa The Drama Queen", Lisa and her friend create a fantasy land where they're the rulers.
- Ned Frischman was Dave the Barbarian, who is able to dominate the past with video games and a joke book from 1940.