Created By: Ronin on January 18, 2010
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Cylonning

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Cylonng is the concept of creating a fictional subcategory that can be applied to any character and then applying it Ad nauseam to most of the cast. Possibly as a method to create a Meta Origin, it usually fails. It's Stealth Minority on a on a massive scale.

  • The Trope Namer is the second Battle Star Galactica for randomly making nearly half the cast Cylons.
  • Lampshadeed in the Great Lakes Avengers were the team renamed themselves The Great Lakes X-men after it was revealed that the entire team was made up of mutants.
    • This was also a parody of the then popularity of various 'X-Titles'
  • Heroes often had characters revealed to have powers.

Community Feedback Replies: 19
  • January 18, 2010
    Fanra
    The science fiction story Who Goes There. Twice been adapted as a motion picture: firstly in 1951 as The Thing from Another World and later in 1982 as The Thing.
  • January 18, 2010
    Earnest
    I wouldn't say it usually fails, just that it can be easily abused when creators / writers apply it to everyone because they think the characters will be more interesting, or that the audience can't relate to them otherwise.

    In Kingdom Hearts Sora was The Chosen One to wield the Keyblade... except it turns out he was the back up, and Riku 'defaulted' out of it by going to the Dark Side. Okay, it's a good plot twist. King Mickey gets one too, but since he's crazy awesome we don't care. In II things get weird. Roxas can wield it, but it turns out to be because he's Sora's Nobody, so it's understandable. And in the same vein, in Chain of Memories the Riku Replica can use them too, being a copy of Riku. It starts to break down in by the end of II, where Kairi is shown in a cutscene with one. What. She doesn't even do anything with it. And in Birth by Sleep, Xion, her replica/clone can use one too. Okay... the club has what, 7 keyblade wielders now? And a Green Lantern Corps of them exist(ed) somewhere. So who knows how many more will crop out of the woodwork.
  • January 18, 2010
    pure.Wasted
    I take issue with the "random" portion of your BSG example. There was plenty of evidence to suggest that Tyrol was one, and even that Tigh OR Ellen were one -- which necessitates the other. Not to mention precedent of sleeper agents.
  • January 18, 2010
    Camacan
    Not sure Cylonning is the best name -- it's not the first thing that comes to mind with respect to Cylons. Nor are Cylons the poster-children for this plot.

    Not sure I can suggest a better title though. Suggestions: You Mean Everyone Here Is Undercover? or Special Decay.

    Example

    If you think this fits your trope it is at least Older Than Radio. It's not random, however: it's a plot feature -- but it does involve an initially exotic category being gradually revealed as being shared by large portion of the cast.

    • The Man Who Was Thursday by G. K. Chesterton was published in 1908. In the novel, the hero is drawn into the murky world of anarchists. He discovers one of their number is in fact an undercover policeman. As the story continues, attempt to apprehend anarchists force each one to reveal that they are in fact a policeman.
  • January 21, 2010
    Ronin
    Bumping up to soak up some more examples before launch.
  • January 21, 2010
    Camacan
    Might want to get three votes for a title too: Three Rules Of Three and all that.
  • January 22, 2010
    duralict
    Does Stealth Minority really not exist? That should really be a trope.

    Everyones A Cylon?
  • January 22, 2010
    Arivne
    The "criminal/spy organization with all members being government agents/police" is Flock Of Wolves.
  • January 22, 2010
    Earnest
  • January 22, 2010
    Jonti
    You Mean Everyone Here Is Undercover would be Flockof Wolves. Special ecay sounds like it might fit. Another example might be Buffy The Vampire Slayer at the start of the show only Buffy was anything other than a normal human, by the end almost everyone had started picking up powers.
  • January 22, 2010
    Unknown Troper
    Dollhouse: Victor's a doll! Mellie's a doll! Saunders is a doll! Season 2 brings even more.

    (I like Everyones A Cylon)
  • January 22, 2010
    girlyboy
    Another vote for Everyones A Cylon. :)
  • January 23, 2010
    Ronin
    @duralict It did but some asshole zapped it becuase it didn't go through YKTTW first despite it having been heavily used and edited at that point.
  • January 23, 2010
    pure.Wasted
    Minority Majority?

    I don't think Everyones A Cylon is ideal. On the show there was a very valid fan theory that literally everybody was a Cylon because Cylons were common ancestors of the Twelve Colonies, which is what this title gets across. Tomato In The Mirror on a societal level.

    I vote for Special Decay. Although it doesn't really make sense in the context of Cylons, since we knew from the start there would be 12 models revealed. It's not like they sprung it on us out of nowhere.
  • January 23, 2010
    Grue
    Sparks in Girl Genius. They are supposed to be rare, but most of recurring characters happen to be sparks.
  • January 23, 2010
    FrodoGoofballCoTV
  • January 23, 2010
    duralict
    Everyone Is Jesus In Purgatory and Everyone Is Satan In Hell aren't really the same thing beyond the "everyone" part, because they're about audience interpretation and symbolism. Everyone Is Bi/Gay probably has overlap, but only if you don't know it from the beginning. Rags To Royalty usually only applies to one character, so probably not? The rest of those, though, definitely.

    @Ronin well that's douchey. I don't suppose the wiki keeps the edit history pages for deleted entries?
  • January 23, 2010
    Aminatep
    Vote for Everyone Is A Tomato. Awesome.
  • January 24, 2010
    Ronin
    Gonna launch this. Everyone Is A Tomato. If not liked feel free to change it in Trope fix. And remember Edit the page the launch only provides the frame work and pages still need optional things like Pictures and Troper Tales. I can't tell you how annoying it is to find one of your tropes buried in the New Launches section with a big red link on the other side of the chart.Seriously EDIT THE PAGE.
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