Created By: MetaFour on January 1, 2011 Last Edited By: MetaFour on January 5, 2011
Troped

Becoming The Boast

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Trope
Maybe Needs a Better Title.

Bob brags about some skill he possess, or some impressive feat he pulled off in the past. The other characters roll their eyes at the time, but they remember. Eventually, their plans will depend on that skill, at which point Bob will confess that his original claims were very overstated, if not completely fabricated. What separates this trope from Fake Ultimate Hero is that, by the time Bob is exposed, the initial plan is completely past the Point of No Return, so Bob is the Closest Thing We Got and thus has no choice but to attempt to live up to the original boasts.

Of course, since it's a Million-to-One Chance, Bob does just fine.

Rolling Updates ahoy:

  • íThree Amigos!: Ned mentions that a passing biplane is the same kind that he flew in one of his prior movies. At the end, the other Amigos need him to fly this plane to escape from El Guapo's army. Ned confesses that it was his stunt double who actually flew the plane. They climb aboard the plane anyway, and Ned flies like crazy.
  • Chicken Run: Fowler talks constantly about the time he spent in the Royal Air Force. At the end, the chickens expect him to pilot their homemade aircraft to freedom, and he admits that he was in the Air Force as a mascot, not a pilot. He ends up flying anyway.
  • In Memphis Belle bombardier Val has not exactly gone out of his way to deny that he is almost qualified as a doctor, even if he never specifically claims so. When Danny is wounded during the mission and the others look to Val to save him, he finally fesses up, admitting he only took two weeks of medical school before enlisting. The Captain, Dennis, gives him a speech about how he's the closest thing they got, and he goes off to save Danny's life...
  • In Snakes on a Plane, Troy claims to be able to fly a plane, and have logged hundreds of flight hours. And then it turns out that actually, he was talking about a PS2 game, but he manages to land the plane anyway.
  • A Star Trek: Deep Space Nine novel once featured Sisko bragging about being able to hit a target with a phaser blast using a mirror. Later, that exact situation crops up on the station (with Odo becoming the mirror); Sisko pulls the stunt off but afterwards admits he had exaggerated his ability.
  • Ciaphas Cain is constantly on the revieving end of this because of his (partly accidental) status of a Fake Ultimate Hero. The best example probably being in the first novel, when his friend assumed he'd want to sneak into an enemy camp for fun (although he is quite competant he's also an admitted Dirty Coward).
  • In the book series Septimus Heap, a ghost asks Septimus if he can perform a certain spell and he says "almost"--not because he knows anything about the spell, but because he knows the ghost will get horribly upset if the answer is "no". Of course, later on they need the spell to heal a dragon-boat and they scramble to make the spell work based on previous reasearch he made because he was curious.
  • Mystery Men: Mr. Furious supposedly has the superpower of rage-induced super-strength, but, when called on it near the end of the film, he reveals it's all an act. However, when facing off against the Big Bad, he becomes genuinely furious and starts kicking ass.
Community Feedback Replies: 16
  • January 1, 2011
    Ryusui
    Writing Checks Your Skill Cant Cash?

    I Cant Really Fly A Plane?

    • Gilderoy Lockhart from Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets made his career writing books about his fantastic wizarding exploits; unfortunately, as his disastrous attempt at teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts demonstrates, he's actually a pretty crappy wizard who wrote about other peoples' exploits and claimed them for his own. When he's tasked with finding the Chamber of Secrets and vanquishing the monster that's been petrifying students, Harry and Ron find him in his quarters packing for a quick getaway.
  • January 1, 2011
    KZN02
    In Halo: First Contact, recently escapees of Reach and space dissidents (?) bluff each other with powerful Covenant arsenal and nuclear bombs respectively. When the Covenant reaches the dissident's hideout, they reveal to each other that the Covenant arsenal has been reduced to one barely functional cannon and the nuclear bombs were just fakes that registered as such on radar.
  • January 1, 2011
    Prophet
    May result in Falling Into The Cockpit.
  • January 1, 2011
    Earnest
    Unskilled Braggart? Often happens to the Miles Gloriosus.

    • Played with in Krull. Despite his boasting, Ergo The Magnificent is a horrible wizard who is utterly useless for most of the plot, all his Baleful Polymorph curses backfire on him... which comes in handy when he casts a tiger spell to protect one of his friends from Faceless Goons.
  • January 1, 2011
    Worldmaker
    We had this once. It was called Weak Ass Badass. Lasted about a month before it was Cutlisted because of all the other "character isn't as heroic/badass/whatever as he says he is" tropes already on the site.
  • January 1, 2011
    c0ry
    Chekhov's Bluff?
  • January 1, 2011
    randomsurfer
    In Memphis Belle bombardier Val has not exactly gone out of his way to deny that he is almost qualified as a doctor, even if he never specifically claims so. When Danny is wounded during the mission and the others look to Val to save him, he finally fesses up, admitting he only took two weeks of medical school before enlisting. The Captain, Dennis, gives him a speech about how he's the closest thing they got, and he goes off to save Danny's life...
  • January 3, 2011
    MetaFour
    I forgot about the Closest Thing We Got trope. This one is basically the intersection of Closest Thing We Got and Fake Ultimate Hero. I edited the OP to clarify.

    And randomsurfer's examples seem to be the only ones that fit that criteria.
  • January 3, 2011
    troacctid
    Becoming The Boast seems to imply that they brag about something they can't actually do and later learn how to actually do it, as opposed to being roped into doing it without really knowing how.
  • January 3, 2011
    Irrisia
    Snakes On A Plane, when Troy claims to be able to fly a plane, and have logged hundreds of flight hours. And then it turns out that actually, he was talking about a PS 2 game, but he manages to land the plane anyway.
  • January 3, 2011
    JonnyB
    Joxer the Mighty, to some extent.
  • January 3, 2011
    Scooter007
    • A Star Trek Deep Space Nine novel once featured Sisko bragging about being able to hit a target with a phaser blast using a mirror. Later, that exact situation crops up on the station (with Odo becoming the mirror); Sisko pulls the stunt off but afterwards admits he had exaggerated his ability.
  • January 4, 2011
    DAN004
  • January 4, 2011
    Bisected8
    Ciaphas Cain is constantly on the revieving end of this because of his (partly accidental) status of a Fake Ultimate Hero. The best example probably being in the first novel, when his friend assumed he'd want to sneak into an enemy camp for fun (although he is quite competant he's also an admitted Dirty Coward).
  • January 4, 2011
    sainatsukino
    In the book series Septimus Heap, a gost asks Septimus if he can perform a certain spell and he says "almost". It turns out he can't, but the gost asks him every time and he gets horribly upset if the answer is "no", so that's why he said it. Of course, later on they need the spell to heal a dragon-boat and they scramble to make the spell work based on previous reasearch he made because he was curious.
  • January 4, 2011
    Generality
    Mystery Men: Mr. Furious supposedly has the superpower of rage-induced super-strength, but, when called on it near the end of the film, he reveals it's all an act. However, when facing off against the Big Bad, he becomes genuinely furious and starts kicking ass.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

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