He's The Ace... in his dreams only.
A character dreams himself being perfect in every way, to the point that it resembles a Mary Sue fanfic. Often if this fantasy becomes known to others, it's a source of acute embarassment to the dreamer. A Sub-Trope of Imagine Spot. Compare Her Code Name Was "Mary Sue", where it's written down for all to see. Needs More Examples, Needs a Better Description.
- Animorphs: When Jake becomes a Controller early on, one way the Yeerk tortures him is by replaying an embarrassing fantasy of Jake's from years prior, where he won the big basketball game with a difficult shot and was then congratulated by his brother (a much better basketball player).
- Azumanga Daioh: Tomo is a Jerkass Genki Girl, overshadowed in class by Chiyo and in gym by Sakaki. One episode focuses on her dreaming of herself as extremely popular, beating Chiyo and Sakaki in their specialties, and becoming the hero of the town.
- Gaston Lagaffe: Lagaffe falls asleep listening to the sports results, and in his dream sees himself punching out a boxer, get simultaneously tackled by an entire rugby team and still scoring, etc.
- In The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Walter constantly dreams of himself being the best of anything, whether a brilliant fighter plane pilot, or a skilled surgeon, or a noble martyr, as opposed to his real life as a Henpecked Husband.
- In the Star Trek: Voyager episode "Tinker, Tenor, Doctor, Spy", the Doctor installs a daydreaming subroutine where he imagines himself constantly having to assume command of Voyager as the Emergency Command Hologram, who gets the crew out of situations even more single-handedly and hammily than most real Star Trek captains. It turns out an alien race monitors these daydreams and thinks they're reality, eventually causing the crew to find out, much to his embarrassment.
- In the Boy Meets World episode "Hair Today, Goon Tomorrow," Eric dreams he is the star of an imagined crime-fighting TV show "The Good Looking Guy" complete with opening sequence and theme song.
"When a crime breaks out, all the cute girls shout, 'Get the good-looking guy.' (Good looking guy)"
- Homer Simpson occasionally indulges in this, he imagines or portrays himself as thin, muscular, hairy and witty (as opposed to shamefully intoxicated) when he is recalling past events or throwaway anecdotes of his life.
- Shiratori in Yandere Kanojo is like this, and he normally would be right, if he wasn't in a Gag Series. As it is, he's the Butt Monkey and Unknown Rival.
- In the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, episode "A Dog and Pony Show", Rarity is kidnapped, and Spike imagines himself as an unstoppable Knight in Shining Armor to Save the Princess (as Rarity is dressed as a Princess in his fantasy).
- The Inspector Gadget movie begins with the hero imagining himself as a super cop.
Hello, Unknown Troper. You'll need to get known to lend a hand here.