Created By: Folamh3 on June 27, 2014 Last Edited By: Folamh3 on July 11, 2014
Nuked

Former Crush, Current Loser

Alice had a crush on Bob years ago, but now Bob is a loser

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Trope
Typically a comedy trope, in which Alice was once attracted to Bob, usually many years previous (perhaps when the two characters were in high school or college), but her attraction was unreciprocated. The characters then meet again, such as at a Class Reunion, and Alice learns that Bob is in fact a pathetic loser: working in a dead-end job, in dire financial straits, extremely immature etc. Alice typically feels a little smug and vindicated that her life has turned out better than Bob's.

A subtrope of Future Loser. Closely related to Old Flame Fizzle.

Examples

Film
  • In 13 Going on 30, the protagonist has a crush on a boy in her school when they are teenagers. Near the end of the film, she gets into a taxi and finds that the driver is the guy in question, who is now overweight and struggling.

Live-Action TV
  • In one episode of Friends, Monica runs into a guy she'd had a crush on in high school (who'd also been Rachel's date to the prom) and goes out to dinner with him, whereupon she learns that he is an insufferably childish boor: his social circle is still limited to his friends from high school, he still works in the same cinema he worked in at the time and he still lives with his parents.


Community Feedback Replies: 11
  • June 27, 2014
    DAN004
    Subtrope if Future Loser
  • June 28, 2014
    MiinU
    This sounds like Old Flame Fizzle.
  • June 28, 2014
    TonyG
    ^Actually, this appears to be a sub-trope of that.
  • July 10, 2014
    bitemytail
    ^ I don't see how this is different from Old Flame Fizzle.
  • July 10, 2014
    Folamh3
    It's a subtrope. Old Flame Fizzle, as per the trope description, encompasses friends one hasn't seen for some time as well as former romantic partners. This is specifically for people a character had a crush on years previous.
  • July 10, 2014
    DAN004
    The current guy being a loser is just one reason for Old Flame Fizzle.
  • July 11, 2014
    Folamh3
    ^That too.
  • July 11, 2014
    bitemytail
    ^^^ Not much of a subtrope if it only has 2 examples.
  • July 11, 2014
    DAN004
    Of course we're trying to find examples here...
  • July 11, 2014
    XFllo
    To me it looks like Old Flame Fizzle, only The Same But More Specific.

    I don't think we need the page. I could be wrong though if there are more distinctions and nuances. As it is, I don't think it will fly.
  • July 11, 2014
    randomsurfer
    Played with in an episode of How I Met Your Mother where Robin encounters an old boyfriend who is potbellied, balding, and whose life hasn't changed in 20 years (still lives with his parents, still works as a bagboy, still this close to a recording contract), yet she sees him as he was instead of as he is now.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=xpvfm4gernlc2sxc9imljppk&trope=DiscardedYKTTW