Named By Democracy
What the masses do when No Name Given.


(permanent link) added: 2011-09-13 21:38:39 sponsor: Cider (last reply: 2011-10-17 15:07:25)

Add Tag:
"I was tall, it's true, all of six foot two. They broke me across my back! My name unknown, it's not my own! They call me Crooked Jack."
--Irish Folk song

Perhaps the original is too hard to pronounce, maybe the subject in question simply doesn't have one at all, refuses to tell, or just forgot it. For whatever reason the locals decided on a fitting name for the subject and are sticking to it regardless of any protests, they've been named by democracy. Compare Verbal Tic Name, where the subject will really have a hard time protesting this. The naming of the subject has to be depicted or described to be this trope, if we don't know how came it came to be its more likely Known Only by Their Nickname or Everyone Calls Him Barkeep.

Examples

Anime and Manga
  • Scar From Fullmetal Alchemist, his real Ishbalan name was never revelead, and his nickname was give since it was one of the few particular characteristics they could obtain from witnesses at first, he seems to have adopted it to a some deegre since he has done many things that go against the Ishbal Teachings(mainly murder)
Scar Long ago this body did have a holy name given by god, but that person died years ago from a life of sin, malice and retribution.
(not to confuse it with That Man Is Dead)

Comics
  • DC Comics' Solomon Grundy was named after the nursery rhyme when he told someone he didn't have a name, and had emerged fully grown from the swamp on a Monday.
  • The Incredible Hulk was an example of this trope but it's since been retconned away.
  • Dave Sim (creator of Cerebus the Aardvark) once mentioned how several grown-up members of his family spent several hours naming the new cat (the result, BTW, was "puss"). He took this as a sign that Democracy Is Bad.

Film
  • Who Am I: The amnesiac protagonist shouts, "Who am I?". The locals just think he's hammy and shout it with equal enthusiasm when they want his attention.
  • In Tremors, the townspeople have a spirited discussion about what to call the underground monsters menacing them all, finally deciding on "graboids". The person who came up with the name is killed soon after.

Professional Wrestling
  • Allegedly The Four Horsemen made references to the apocalyptic figures in a promo but never claimed the name for themselves until other people started calling them that. Being a carbon copy, Evolution tried to invoke the same thing and probably failed because it was intentional.

Video Games
  • One Tekken character told the orphans his tag team partner looked after that he didn't have a name they could hope to pronounce. Their response? "You do now!" It was Armor King.
  • Chaos Lord from Digimon World is named by the other Digimon, which is notable because Digimon usually don't give individual names to anyone.
  • The Gman from Half-Life doesn't have an official name (with the possible exception of "Our mutual friend", as he's called by Dr. Vance). His name's simply the one attached to his character model in the original game.

Western Animation
  • Samurai Jack: The time displaced hero was called "Samurai Jack" by the first friendly people he met in the future. It was also what was printed on his wanted posters and he's come to accept it, though occasionally reminds people its what they named him, not his original name.
replies: 20

TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy