The hero has inadvertently become involved with the Ancient Conspiracy
or Corrupt Corporate Executive
, who are secretly The Chessmaster
of the impossibly confused Xanatos Roulette
that the heroes find themselves in. But rather than being the Government, or the Masons, or the Illuminatti, its... the local fishmongers. This trope covers any kind of conspiracy within an organisation which doesn't even have enough influence to compete with the out-of-town shopping park, never mind orchestrate the downfall of all civilisation.
- In Read or Die, the Governments of the world are all merely puppets, secretly being controlled by that wretched hive of scum and villainy: The British Library.
- In The Simpsons, a secret colony of super-powerful elves extend their influence... through horse racing.
- Also in The Simpsons, the Mason-esque "Stonecutters" are shown to have infiltrated the Egg Council, for their own nefarious ends.
- In The Demon Headmaster series, the head teacher of a small comprehensive secondary school attempts to take over the world using (in order): a school, a computer summer camp, a Merchandise-Driven TV show, a small time lab, a university computer lab, and, most amusingly, a nightclub.