Created By: DrakeClawfang on December 6, 2013 Last Edited By: GlassSpires on August 4, 2014

Revealing Word Slip

Soon the city will belong to me! Er, I mean, to us!

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Trope
This trope is when a character gets too carried away and slips, revealing that while they may be working for someone else or with a group, they're in it for themselves. This is usually done by the character declaring "soon, the treasure will belong to me!" or "once we have that key, the treasure is mine!", or some similar declaration where they claim total ownership and credit for the eventual reward the group seeks.

This slip reveals to the viewer that the character is a villain, or at least has sinister, selfish intentions, and is likely to betray the others at some point. Another character will likely correct them on this slip up, that they mean "us" or "ours", leaving the first character to hurriedly agree. Usually, the others think they just got carried away and continue trusting them, but the viewers know better. The character may also catch themselves in this slip, leaving them embarrassed and worried and trying to cover their tracks.

A variation can have the character say "us" or "ours", revealing themselves a member of a group of some sort. For example, if someone who is secretly a member of a cult says to those investigating said cult "maybe we're too clever to be caught", and corrects to "I mean, they're too clever".

Compare Freudian Slip, Last-Second Word Swap, Verbal Backspace, Saying Too Much. Subtrope of The Reveal, since the character was likely up until now trusted.

Examples

Literature
  • When Smeagol is talking to Gollum in Lord of the Rings after making plans he triumphantly declares that the "Precious will belong to me!" Gollum quickly corrects him, "To us!"

Live-Action Television
  • Barney Miller: In one episode a DA comes by about a case, and several times talks about the case's impact on "me...us...the District Attorney's office," showing he's more concerned about how the case will impact his career than about prosecuting bad guys.

Video Games

Web Original
  • In RWBY, while Weiss and Blake are in arguments on the Faunus race and its terrorist organization White Fang, the latter blurts out "Well, maybe we just don't like being pushed around!" She quickly realized what she said and then runs off. Blake is secretly a Faunus and former White Fang member.
Community Feedback Replies: 10
  • December 6, 2013
    DrakeClawfang
    I think this is not the same as Freudian Slip, hence the creation of the YKTTW. I've no examples off the top of my head but see this all the time so I'm sure others can provide some examples. :)
  • December 7, 2013
    randomsurfer
    Barney Miller: In one episode a DA comes by about a case, and several times talks about the case's impact on "me...us...the District Attorney's office," showing he's more concerned about how the case will impact his career than about prosecuting bad guys.
  • December 7, 2013
    Tallens
    I'll be willing to see where this goes, but I think this might just be The Same But More Specific.

    That said, what you're talking about here I don't actually see on Freudian Slip.

    • In one of the Nod briefings in Command And Conquer Tiberian Sun CABAL makes reference to my...your plans.

    • When Smeagol is talking to Gollum in Lord Of The Rings after making plans he riumphantly declares that the "Precious will belong to me!" Gollum quickly corrects him, "To us!"

  • December 7, 2013
    xanderiskander
    I would say this is a subtrope to The Reveal since it generally deals with a conversation leading to a reveal that the character did or is up to something. It should have a spoiler warning.

    Video Games
    • Persona4: The Protagonist decides to gather the main group to confront Adachi about being the killer. They prod him with questions, and when they press the issue of him being the killer Adachi gets angry and ends up saying "We already know Namatame's the one who threw them in!". Which leads to Dojima asking if he knows something about the method behind the murders.

    Western Animation
    • The Legend Of Korra: Varrick does this on several occasions. When they arrive to republic city he tells Bolin that he funded both President Raikou and his competitor's election campaigns because he wanted to "hedge his bets". It turns out later that he has both the police, and the Triple Threats (gangsters) in his pocket as well. Which he used to organize a bombing and a kidnapping of the president because he was trying to drag republic city into a civil war between the northern and southern water tribes.
  • December 7, 2013
    DAN004
    Overlaps with Saying Too Much?

    • In RWBY, while Weiss and Blake are in arguments on the Faunus race and its terrorist organization White Fang, the latter blurts out "Well, maybe we just don't like being pushed around!" She quickly realized what she said and then runs off. Blake is secretly a Faunus and former White Fang member.
  • December 7, 2013
    Tallens
    I think you could do away with the first paragraph, as it strikes of Example As Thesis. The rest of it should be fine.
  • December 7, 2013
    DrakeClawfang
    ^ Done

    ^^^ Added but then removed those, I don't think they're this trope.
  • December 8, 2013
    Nocturna
    I think this would be a subtrope of Freudian Slip, as it's a specific type of Freudian slip.
  • August 4, 2014
    caracal-eyes
    While this may be a Freudian Slip, since it unintentionally reveals a character's thoughts, I think it's familiar/common/meaningful enough to merit its own trope specific to I/We, You/Me, Me/Us, etc slips.
  • August 4, 2014
    DAN004
    ^ I think it doesn't have to be pronouns though.
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