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Fake Weakness


(permanent link) added: 2010-05-31 18:12:25 sponsor: Kriegsmesser (last reply: 2010-05-31 18:12:25)

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Whatever my one vulnerability is, I will fake a different one. For example, ordering all mirrors removed from the palace, screaming and flinching whenever someone accidentally holds up a mirror, etc. In the climax when the hero whips out a mirror and thrusts it at my face, my reaction will be 'Hmm...I think I need a shave.'

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As every Genre Savvy hero or Dangerously Genre Savvy villain knows, the best way to defeat most adversaries is to Attack Its Weak Point For Massive Damage. But said Savvies will also know that this is coming, and may very well decide that they don't like being shot in their weak point. This is where the Fake Weakness comes in: Faking a weakness, whether it's an actual flashing weakpoint, a Weaksauce Weakness, or just an Achilles' Heel, to put your opponents off their guard and make them waste valuable time and energy on a red herring before you proceed with the curb stomp.

Compare I Am Not Left-Handed and Briar Patching.

Examples of this trope include:
Theater

Video Games
  • Perhaps not the straightest example, but about halfway through Paper Mario, Bowser straight asks Peach about Mario's weaknesses. If Peach answers honestly, there will be several powerful enemies around the next game area, but if she tells Bowser that Mario is deathly afraid of healing items, he will take this at face value, and there will be several useful items scattered around the area instead.

Web Original
  • As quoted above, the Evil Overlord list condones this sort of action.

Other
  • Often used as a justification for Our Vampires Are Different and the like, because if you start debunking beliefs in fake weaknesses, they might start stumbling onto the real ones.

Seen It a Million Times
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