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Gaining superhuman skill or powers by training under exotic foreigners.

(permanent link) added: 2011-05-19 16:37:00 sponsor: Kn9 (last reply: 2011-05-30 14:13:13)

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In the olden days, one of the surest ways to upgrade to a badass was to train in a mysterious Asian country--usually Tibet, for obvious reasons, though other countries got in on the fun, too--and learn some of those Mysteries of the Orient.

Mysteries of the Orient cover virtually every kind of secret knowledge, from the secrets of sorcery, psionics, or chi to mysterious martial arts and ninjutsu to whatever else the plot might need.

This trope is Older Than Radio and extremely common. Much like the Yellow Peril or Dragon Lady, the trope thrives regardless of any Unfortunate Implications, though there might be some Lampshade Hanging here and there.


  • The Shadow learned magic techniques from Tibetan monks in some incarnations.
  • Dr. Doom and Doctor Strange both learned magic powers from Tibetan monks.
  • The Dark Knight Saga has Bruce Wayne learning how to fight like a ninja from a secret ninja tribe headed by Ras Al Ghoul.
  • Butler of Artemis Fowl with his super-secret training under Madame Ko (might have gotten the name wrong)
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