Seduction-Proof Marriage
Being married makes a character immune to seduction.
Better Name Up For Grabs

(permanent link) added: 2011-10-18 13:55:10 sponsor: Kohdok edited by: StarSword (last reply: 2014-09-13 09:43:08)

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Title Crowner (closed); Rolling Updates

Sabrina: That was your wife I saw the other day, wasn't it?
Det. Danny Reagan: Yeah, why?
Sabrina: Let me ask you something. What does she got that I don't have?
Danny: Me.
— "After Hours", Blue Bloods

This trope is when a character who is married becomes immune to seduction because their marriage is a happy one and/or they have a strong sense of honor/propriety. It is often a sign of maturity as well as a show of being a good spouse. Many people are envious of their faithful and happy relationship. Sometimes paired with a lech to show the dichotomy. Count on this guy to be the one who keeps a cool head when the lech would fall apart.

Even the lowliest of Mooks can be shown to be honorable if they have a happy marriage. Often after the seduction, they will burn out the libido with their legal spouse.

Truth in Television: Even in this era of more relaxed sexual morals, a lot of people still take marriage vows seriously and will rebuff any attempts by third parties to seduce them. That said, No Real Life Examples, Please! This is kind of a gossip magnet.

Similar to Celibate Hero, as the character certainly recognizes the hints, but simply feels no urge to reciprocate due to being in a relationship. Sister Trope to Sorry, I'm Gay. Often overlaps with One True Love. Contrast I'm a Man, I Can't Help It, All Men Are Perverts, and Your Cheating Heart.

Examples

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    Comedy 
  • Old joke: A man wakes up with a killer hangover. Fearing his wife's reaction, he crawls into the kitchen where he finds an enormous hand-made breakfast waiting on the table, with his wife gone to work and his son waiting for him. When he asks his son what this is for, the son replies "Well last night, you puked all over the doorstep, you crapped yourself and you tripped into Mom's favorite vase." "But why's she being so nice to me?" "Well, when she was trying to get you out of your dirty pants you punched her screaming 'Fuck off, bitch, I'm married!'"

    Comic Books 
  • There's a Spider-Man where Spidey is kidnapped. He's being looked after by a sultry villainess that offers him "anything he wants". He request a solid cage thingy so she'll leave him alone as he was Happily Married to MJ at the time.
  • In the Luna brothers comic series Girls, a small town is overrun by aliens who happen to look like beautiful young women, and promptly seduce any man they can so they can give birth to a cosmic horror. When one wife realizes that her husband is alone in his house with one of the alien girls, she and some other women storm the house intending on preventing him from impregnating the alien. But the man's wife is relieved to see that he has absolutely no interest in a sexual encounter, and instead he has killed the alien and is dissecting her on the coffee table.

  • Dark Victory plays with this, regarding Two-Face. Harvey Dent still regards himself as married to Gilda, but his Two-Face identity isn't, so he invokes and ignores this trope whenever it's convenient. For example, he fights off Poison Ivy's pheromones by remembering his love for Gilda. He also has an affair with another woman, the new DA, Janice Porter, but when he decides he no longer needs her:
    Porter: Tell them, Harvey! Tell them that I love you and you love—]]
    [gunshot]
    Two-Face: Harvey Dent is a married man, Porter. Don't ever forget that.

    Film 
  • Bull Durham has Ethical Slut Milly trying to pick up various members of the Durham Bulls at batting practice. One Deadpan Snarker responds to her "I'm Milly," with "I'm married."
  • In Die Hard 2, the airport clerk who helps John early on suggests they could go out later on. John shows off his wedding ring, and says "Just the fax, ma'am".
  • In The Red Baron, one of the pilots at a burlesque bar has one of the girls hanging off his shoulders and he protests, "I'm married, you know!"
  • In the 2007 version of Hairspray, Alpha Bitch Velma tries to seduce Wilbur simply so she can cause strife between Wilbur and his wife. Wilbur is so faithful to his wife that he seems completely oblivious to her advances, but Velma's plan works anyway because she just throws herself at Wilbur as his wife comes in the door to "catch" them in the "act".

    Literature 
  • In the World War novel Aftershocks, Johannes Drucker has been in space by himself for over a month, and is then caught by aliens. He is presented with a female human who has been raised by them (these are aliens who don't wear clothes), and when she asks if he would mate with her if given the chance, one of the reasons he gives for not wanting to is that he is married. Since the aliens also don't practice marriage, this doesn't really explain much to her.
  • Invoked by John of Rhodes in the Belisarius Series when he says he is not really such a Casanova as rumored because he looks carefully to see who is seduceable and Antonia is completely unseducable, being Happily Married to Belisarius.
  • Played with in Against the Tide of Years, when Marian Alston and Swindapa, a married lesbian couple, visit a war chief and are offered a woman as part of the Sacred Hospitality. Alston, who takes marriage very seriously, has absolutely no interest in the girl, but Swindapa, who comes from a culture in which polygamy is the norm, is intrigued, even though she doesn't take advantage. This is somewhat par for the course in their relationship; throughout the book, Swindapa is rather shameless about her wandering eye, even though she never does anything more than look and occasionally enthuse.
    "I promised to be monogamous, not blind."
  • The Wheel of Time:
    • Mat Cauthorn is a ladies man bordering on Pornomancer territory. Late in the series, he becomes married to the Seanchan empress Because Destiny Says So. Even though it's effectively an Arranged Marriage that looks like it will be completely sexless, he is scrupulous about honoring his vows, turning down several opportunities to get some on the side. (Fortunately for him, They Do eventually, though with hilarious Do You Want to Copulate? overtones on her part.)
    • Perrin is able to shrug off powerful mind control that should make him utterly loyal to a particular villainess, by remembering that he loves his wife.
  • In I, Jedi, crime boss Leonia Tavira tries to seduce Corran Horn, who's gone undercover in her Space Pirate gang to find his wife Mirax. He is massively tempted, briefly tries to rationalize it, then decides it's the Dark Side of the Force talking. But Tavira's made it clear she wants him as her boytoy and won't take "no" for an answer long-term (despite his cover story including a committed relationship), so Corran accelerates his plans to break up her pirate alliance.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Firefly: In "Our Mrs. Reynolds", Wash resists Saffron's advances due to this. Saffron just loses her temper and clocks him on the head. His wife is suitably impressed and pleased.
    Wash: Wuh duh ma huh tah duh fong kwong duh wai shung,trans.  do I wish I was somebody else right now. Somebody not... married, not madly in love with a beautiful woman who can kill me with her pinkie!
  • Hank Moody from Californication cites this at times to girls that come on to him/coworkers who set him up while he's trying to repair his relationship with his long-term domestic partner (his wife in everything but name).
  • Star Trek:
    • In an episode of Star Trek: The Original Series, Kirk is infected by alien tears that cause men to be madly in love with the woman who shed them. Doctor McCoy looks for a cure, but in the end notes that the Captain had his own cure; he was in essence already married to the Enterprise.
    • When O'Brien goes undercover in the Orion Syndicate in DS9: "Honor Among Thieves" the local boss offers him a prostitute as a gesture of Sacred Hospitality. However the boss is satisfied with this explanation for refusal.
  • Frequently used by Marshall in How I Met Your Mother whenever the gang gets into strip clubs or gay bars. He is still flattered by the attention of gays, though.
  • One episode of Lois and Clark had a beautiful blonde Femme Fatale working with a bomber who's Happily Married. She makes several advances on him, but, despite being an unrepentant murderer, he declines them all. She doesn't take it very well, and when their plan unravels, she arranges for all the blame to fall on him.
  • Danny on CSI: NY at least once. His old partner ribs him about the pretty nurse in the hospital when Danny visits him and this is Danny's reply.
  • Early in The Mentalist Patrick Jane is faithful to his wife, declines all offers of seduction, and constantly wears his wedding ring - but he's technically not married, since his wife was murdered years before the series started. Later in the series he starts dating occasionally again, and even briefly takes a TV psychic for a girlfriend.
  • In the Golden Girls episode "Ladies of the Evening", the girls are arrested on charges of prostitution. Dorothy offers (sincerely) to explain things to the officer in private, but he takes it for a come on and says he's happily married.
  • M*A*S*H
    • Played straight by BJ Hunnicutt, who is (almost) completely faithful to his wife because of this. The one or two times he does get seduced he feels awful about it afterwards.
    • Played With with Frank Burns and Margaret Houlihan. The former is married but is having an ongoing relationship with Margaret. When Margaret gets engaged he thinks they can still fool around but she shoots him down.
  • Invoked in an episode of Leverage which recounts the hijacking by D.B. Cooper and the stewardess he spoke to. She had gotten so many love notes from smitten passengers that she'd taken to wearing a fake wedding band to ward some of them off.
  • The Friends episode "The One with Christmas in Tulsa" shows Chandler as completely untempted when a co-worker attempts to seduce him.
  • Everybody Loves Raymond: This causes Ray Barone serious angst. first when he loses his wedding ring and a woman comes onto him at the airport; second when he (mistakenly) thinks Peggy the Cookie Nazi has made a pass at him. Both times he stays faithful to Debra.
  • The Blue Bloods episode "After Hours" has a key witness in Danny Reagan's Case of the Week, a hot nightclub owner named Sabrina, get the hots for Danny. He indulges her a little bit (one dance) to get her to open up, but firmly rejects her trying to take it further because he's Happily Married.
  • In Married... with Children, even though Al is very unhappy in his marriage and leers at every attractive woman, when he gets an actual chance to cheat on his wife, he always stays faithful.
  • In the Russian remake of Married... with Children, Happy Together (Schastlivy vmeste), Al Bundy's expy Gena Bukin is just as faithful to his wife, but in one episode he comes close to cheating on her, resolving the situation by having his wife wear a blonde wig to make her look like the new crush.

    Tabletop Games 
  • An Old World of Darkness supplement covering Japan featured animal spirit shapeshifters who like to seduce humans For the Evulz. It's specifically stated that their seduction powers don't work on anyone who is serious about being faithful to their spouse, or a vow of celibacy.

    Theatre 
  • In Damn Yankees, Joe manages to resist Lola's best efforts at vamping him and stays as close as he can to the wife who no longer recognizes him after his transformation into a young baseball hero. His fidelity infuriates Applegate, to whom wives are "more trouble than the Methodist Church."

    Video Games 
  • In Wild ARMs 3, Clive give this as his reason for turning down the seduction attempts of one of the villains. She does not take it well, and in the ensuing boss fight, will only attack the other party members if Clive is dead
  • In Dragon Age: Origins, if you choose to arrange a political marriage between Alistair and Queen Anora, he will usually break off a romance with the Warden. Taking a particular dialogue option in his companion quest gives you the option to become his mistress, however.

    Webcomics 
  • In The Order of the Stick, Elan tries to escape from prison by creating an illusion of a beautiful woman; unfortunately, one of his guards is gay and the other one is married.

    Western Animation 

Indexes: Love Tropes, Loyalty Tropes, Marriage Tropes, Sex Tropes

replies: 108

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