Created By: Eddie Valiant, Jr. on October 3, 2009
Troped

The Frank James

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The Frank James is a character that's part of a group or ensemble, but even though he or she is no less important than the most "prominent" character from said ensemble, they're somehow considered "secondary" by the culture surrounding the work of fiction wherein they're featured. Named after Frank James, Jesse James's brother, who's become relatively obscure in modern culture and exists largely in Jesse's shadow, even though the two were equally infamous in the old west and committed their criminal acts as a pair.

I already tried to launch this as The Diddy Kong, but for some reason some of you found this legitimate trope massively offensive and cutlisted it without rhyme, reason, or chance for debate.

Please contribute to this YKTTW so that we can continue to enrich our awesome trope encyclopedia.
Community Feedback Replies: 42
  • October 3, 2009
    Iron Salticus
    I love the way you say "I don't see my YKTTW entry here now, THE ONLY POSSIBLE EXPLANATION IS THAT YOU HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE PEOPLE DELETED IT BECAUSE IT OFFENDED YOU WITHOUT LETTING ME SAY ANYTHING YOU HORRIBLE FASCISTS". In reality, it's just fallen off the visible list because nobody replied to it. You'll notice that, as of this writing, only entries that were replied to since September 30th show up, and you posted The Diddy Kong on September 29th, which is why it doesn't show up on the main list now. You can still find it by typing, say, "Diddy" into the YKTTW search at the top of the list.

    I find it very ironic that you were whining about The Diddy Kong being randomly cut without giving anyone a chance to debate when the reality of the situation was that too much time to debate elapsed without anyone caring about it enough to bother saying anything.
  • October 3, 2009
    Oonerspism
    Don't get snippy. It didn't get deleted because it wasn't tropable, it got deleted because it wasn't even close to ready to launch. If you don't get any replies after a day, that doesn't mean "no objections, go ahead and launch". You need to wait for some feedback. That's the whole purpose of this exercise. You need a clear description, a decent-sized list of examples, a good title (which The Diddy Kong and The Frank James are not), an index to put the page on, and optionally a page image before you send it out in the wild. You had none of those things.
  • October 3, 2009
    Iron Salticus
    @Oonerspism: ...except it didn't get deleted at all, for any reason. It just automatically fell off the bottom of the list after three days without replies, just like everything else.
  • October 3, 2009
    iwintheinternets?
    Wow... way to sell a trope there buddy...
  • October 3, 2009
    Oonerspism
    No, he just didn't launch the YKTTW properly. He copied the markup over to the page without using the launch feature. It didn't show up in the launch list, but the page was there for a while (I know that because I saw it on the cut list).

    Edit: for the record, the original YKTTW.
  • October 3, 2009
    Eddie Valiant, Jr.
    I wasn't talking about the YKTTW, I was talking about the trope itself. I'll grant you that I launched it prematurely, but the way I see it if it has a legitimate concept going on, there's really no reason for anyone to get rid of it (and there are several tropes lying around that didn't get a YKTTW anyhoo). The discussion made some pretty weighty assumptions that I felt were unjustified, too.

    But, whatever. What happened happened. My apologies to any offended parties. Now, how do you like the trope?
  • October 3, 2009
    Oonerspism
    Many of the tropes that didn't go through YKTTW became good enough to justify keeping through Wiki Magic. Many, many others have been cut, as just a few days watching the cut list will show you. You need to allow YKTTW feedback some time to work out the kinks, otherwise there's no point using it in the first place.
  • October 3, 2009
    Eddie Valiant, Jr.
    Dropping the cutlisted topic entirely, how do you feel about Guy Who Is Somehow Second To The Other Guy For No Adequately Explained Or Noticeable Reason?
  • October 3, 2009
    Oonerspism
    That's just ridiculous. But the two titles you proposed seriously won't work. The Diddy Kong makes me think of a lot of things, but none of them have to do with the trope you proposed. Other people who aren't very familiar with the Donkey Kong series might have no idea what you're talking about.

    In all likelihood, almost everyone will have the same reaction to The Frank James: "huh?". If the trope is about someone who is by definition slightly obscure, naming it after one of those obscure people is not a good course of action.

    Maybe we can get some serious brainstorming done now, if everyone can agree to settle down.
  • October 3, 2009
    Oonerspism
    Forgotten Partner. How about that? It's bland, but pretty descriptive if I'm understanding the trope correctly. The inverse of this is the Garfunkel (which for the record I think is a terrible name for a trope), where someone is given equal billing but barely does anything. Also related to Breakup Breakout.

    • Breakup Breakout: Alice and Bob team up, then eventually split up. Alice makes it big, and Bob is all but forgotten.
    • Garfunkel: Alice and Bob team up. They are both remembered equally, but really Alice did all the work and Bob just sat around eating pizza and picking his nose.
    • This: Alice and Bob team up, make it big, but only Alice is remembered despite the fact that she and Bob were equals throughout their career.
  • October 3, 2009
    Eddie Valiant, Jr.
    Forgotten Partner doesn't quite work. It's not so much about being forgotten as it is being thought of as secondary for no apparent reason.
  • October 3, 2009
    Oonerspism
    OK, so:

    • Breakup Breakout: Alice and Bob team up, then eventually split up. Alice makes it big, and Bob is all but forgotten.
    • Garfunkel: Alice and Bob team up. They are both remembered equally, but really Alice did all the work and Bob just sat around eating pizza and picking his nose.
    • This: Alice and Bob team up, make it big, but Bob is seen as a second banana despite the fact that he and Alice are equally important to their team.

    For some reason, I keep thinking of this in terms of bands. John Deacon of Queen would be a good example if I understand you correctly. He's usually thought of as "the other one" compared to the more outgoing, Large Ham members of the band. Still, he penned several of their big hits, and contributed a certain je ne sais quoi to the songs he didn't write with his bass playing.
  • October 5, 2009
    Unknown Troper
    Ringo Starr of The Beatles is pretty much the poster boy for this trope. The Ringo?
  • October 5, 2009
    dilbert719
  • October 5, 2009
    Chabal 2
    Would this trope cover cases where two people are contributing equally, but one takes all the credit? 'Cuz I remember a panel from a Spider Man comic with this situation (credit-thief named Golden Gladiator, I believe). Additionally, in Monsters Inc, Mike always gets less attention than Sullivan (When both had their pictures on the front page, Mike was covered by the bar code). In this case, it was unintentional.

  • October 8, 2009
    Unknown Troper
    I think Garfunkel is the trope for that.

    I still say The Ringo is a great name for this trope. Anyone agree / disagree?
  • October 8, 2009
    Iron Salticus
    No, what Chabal described sounds like this trope. Garfunkel is equal credit for unequal work; this is equal work for unequal credit.

    The Ringo sounds fabulous.
  • October 8, 2009
    animeg3282
    The Ringo or Surprising Second Fiddle...
  • October 8, 2009
    random surfer
    That Other Guy. As in,
    Hey, remember the famous outlaw duo of Jessie James and...That Other Guy?
    There's this awesome song by Paul Simon and...That Other Guy.
  • October 8, 2009
    Oonerspism
    I vote for That Other Guy too. Even if it's a reasonably well-known real-life figure with a distinct name, naming a trope "The [name]" makes me very uncomfortable. Also, in my experience, most people know John, Paul, Ringo, and That Other Guy.
  • October 8, 2009
    Omar Karindu
    How about a reversal of the trope? Informed Priority or somesuch?
  • October 8, 2009
    Iron Salticus
    That Other Guy is too ambiguous. It makes sense if you already know what the trope is, but if I were to come across That Other Guy while browsing and hadn't seen this YKTTW, I wouldn't have even the clue what it meant. If you don't already have this trope in mind, it could mean anything.
  • October 9, 2009
    Unknown Troper
    The thing about Informed Priority is that it makes the torpe about the prominent guy instead of That Other Guy.

    I feel strongly about relating this trope to Ringo Starr. He's pretty much the living incarnate of this trope. Besides, he has a cool name.

    Any other ideas that work with that in mind?
  • October 10, 2009
    Unknown Troper
    Couldn't this work with a Ringo redirect? Definitely seems tropable, whatever your issues with the launcher
  • October 10, 2009
    dotchan
    Vote for "The Other Guy" as the main, "The Ringo" as the redirect.
  • October 10, 2009
    Unknown Troper
    "Stolen Thunder" as the trope name?
  • October 10, 2009
    DoctorNemesis
    Stuck In Their Shadow?

    Or, for those who appreciate an Incredibly Lazy Pun, Shadow Partner?
  • October 10, 2009
    DracMonster
    Stuck In Thier Shadow looks promising.

    Though I think That Other Guy is no more confusing than Those Two Guys.
  • October 10, 2009
    Unknown Troper
    So far, looks like it's between Stuck In Their Shadow and The Ringo.

    As one last suggestion from me, Ringo Starr Ranking?
  • October 10, 2009
    batfan
    I don't like That Other Guy because from my understanding people know who the person/character is, they just don't think he's as important as the main/title character, when he really is. My only reservation with The Ringo is that he really was not as important as the other three. Of course they needed a drummer, but anyone could have been the drummer, he just got lucky (see: The Pete Best). Sure, he sung a bunch of songs, but that was more Executive Meddling than anything else, and he only wrote two songs. He could work for this trope, sure, I guess, but if he has to be the Trope Namer or a redirect or something I'd prefer Ringo Star Ranking, because it would be less ambiguous.
  • October 11, 2009
    Gerkuman
    Also, as the Garfunkel page itself notes, Garfunkel himself is more like this trope than the trope that was named after him. XD Wait, he's actually this trope, a Garfunkel and Breakup Break out at the same time
  • October 12, 2009
    Unknown Troper
  • November 6, 2009
    fawn
    Well, it was Launched, but it got deleted because it was written poorly and the name was considered unfitting. On the discussion page eddie said it was Up For Grabs, but i hesitate to launch this myself because i write kinda bad, and i am not very experienced with this wiki, but if i find the time, and if no one else wants too, i will do it. As for a more fitting name, how about naming it after the bird from Banjo Kazooie. It is the best example of this trope i can think of, she outshines banjo in every way, her attacks are faster, do more damage, and she has ranged attacks. She can fly him around (with the help of a jump pad and red feathers) she is faster, literally carries him around on her back (granted, he carries her on his back too, but he is slower then kazooie, so most players run kazooie around as soon as the move is available.
  • November 6, 2009
    DarkSasami
    Poorly Promoted Partner, or Partner With Poor PR. Naming it after anyone generally considered second fiddle is necessarily going to be obscure. (And Ringo doesn't count because he wasn't very good.)
  • November 8, 2009
    bbofun
    And here's the problem with naming it after anybody. If it's a legitimate example, most people won't get it (Frank James). Ringo doesn't work because A)some people will say he wasn't very good (see above) or B)he didn't become obscure.

    I like Stuck In Their Shadow, meself.
  • November 8, 2009
    random surfer
    Re-offering my suggestion of That Other Guy.
  • November 8, 2009
    Bisected8
    I just thought of Dude Wheres My Sidekicks Respect but that might be a bit wordy.
  • November 8, 2009
    Game Chainsaw
    I'd advocate Stuck In Their Shadow.
  • November 9, 2009
    spideydude
    I've heard the Three Tenors referred to as Placido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, and "that other guy".
  • November 9, 2009
    SomeSortOfTroper
  • November 13, 2009
    fawn
    Launched. Stuck In Their Shadow had the most people for it, so i named it that.
  • November 13, 2009
    fawn
    Well, now it is danger of getting deleted again...
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