->"C'mon, Lana! You're amazing!"
-->-- '''''{{Series/Smallville}}''''', "Thirst"

Sometimes, we hear about a character who doesn't really line up with the way they've been described, whether it be [[InformedAbility their abilities]] or [[InformedAttribute their personality]]. Sometimes, though, this information all comes from a second character who is simply ''amazed'' at this character. They sing their praises, gushing their little hearts out. Okay, that's all well and good, Mister Fervent Admirer, but why are you praising them so openly?

This is what is known as Character Shilling. Whether it be an attempt to make us like the character, a way of quickly establishing that someone new is a badass a level above anything we've seen before or whatever the case may be, other people will be extremely impressed with this person and let we the viewers know about it. Whether they actually match up to the hype is optional. Sometimes they really are amazing, and sometimes we have ourselves a case of InformedAbility. Or worse, CreatorsPet.

Remember, it's only really shilling when we don't know why such praise and admiration is being given. If they've already shown they can back it up, it probably doesn't count.

This trope does have some [[TropesAreNotBad useful functions]]. Sometimes shilling can be used to build suspense for a character who has yet to appear (or whose abilities have yet to be shown), in order to make a climactic scene where we see the truth behind all those stories all the more powerful. Other times, it can be used to build up a character who [[TheGhost never appears at all]], either to serve as an inspiration or a foil to the main cast. Sometimes the credentials of TheRival will be established through shilling, especially when their reputation (and the hero's efforts to compete with it) is more important to the story than their actual abilities. Shilling can also be used to show that the character doing it is a (distressingly) [[LoonyFan obsessive fan]].

Compare InformedAttribute, InformedAbility and CreatorsPet, the last of which is what happens when this goes wrong and the fans just end up ''hating'' the shilled character. May lead to StopWorshippingMe if it's to the person's face and they're more modest. A character who shills himself ''in-universe'' may be a FakeUltimateHero or MilesGloriosus. If it's a one off shill of their secret identity of some kind it's ButHeSoundsHandsome.

NotToBeConfusedWith CharacterShill, which is about fictional characters advertising real-life products during their own shows.




[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* ''Anime/MobileSuitZetaGundam'' shills former villain turned AntiHero protagonist, Char Aznable like no tomorrow about what a great, noble guy he is when his past actions in ''MobileSuitGundam'' shows that he's really not, as do his future ones in ''CharsCounterattack''. As well as how he's such an awesome pilot when he's spent most of the series getting hit by TheWorfEffect. Even his speech at Dakar, which is supposed to be so good that it captures the attention of every Federation politician there and convinces a Titan pilot to [[HeelFaceTurn switch sides]], boils down to pointing out that even Dakar[[note]] the capital of the Federation[[/note]] is undergoing desertification and that humanity needs to stop it.
* Early ''Manga/TheWorldGodOnlyKnows'' shills Haqua as being amazing, but it's actually part of an obvious setup to show that despite how talented she is the only one she's fooling is Elsie. She's been unable to get any results after graduating and is pretty depressed. Eventually, she does end up deserving her reputation[[note]]when you take into account that she's a low level supervisor who has just graduated high school and is thus about the equivalent of 18][[/note]].
* Cynthia does this with Paul in ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'', who acts like a jerk to everyone and abuses his Pokemon in order to make them stronger, outright abandoning the ones who he finds to be a waste of time, and yet she refers to him as a "great trainer", who just clashes with Ash because of "different methods", rather than because, well, he's a jerk. Averted, however, with Pyramid King Brandon who hands Paul what is [[HumblePie probably his first big loss in the series at that point]] while calling [[WhatTheHellHero him out on his training methods]].
* Inami from ''Manga/{{Working}}'' gets this from most of the cast whenever the spotlight is on her ([[RomanticPlotTumor and that's often]]), with the most coming from Poplar, who won't shut up on how cute Inami is. [[{{Moe}} Though for most people, she's much cuter]]. Presumably, they're trying to make Takahashi, the guy Inami likes, think better of her, but they still overdo it a little. Even the RomanticFalseLead spends more time praising Inami than looking for his LongLostSibling.
* Touma, the main character of ''Manga/MagicalRecordLyricalNanohaForce'', was fairly bland in the first few chapters, up [[RememberTheNewGuy until it was revealed that he was the adopted little brother of Subaru]], a far more popular character. While it's shown how they met, it doesn't quite show how they became so close, and the two don't even interact for a long while. It's just to say 'hey, ''Subaru'' likes him!' to the reader. It gets more obvious later on, when it's shown that other characters like Nanoha know and like him too, which happened ''entirely'' off-screen.
* ''InazumaEleven'' actually managed to subvert this one. When the team first set out to find and meet Fubuki, several characters start discussing rumors about what an amazingly strong and talented person he is, some of which are so over the top (such as "Fubuki the bear-killer") that they're likely parodying this trope. Everyone is quite surprised when they actually meet him and he's nothing like what they expected.
-->'''Fubuki:''' Oh, are you disappointed after seeing the real thing?
* Played with (and possibly parodied) in the ''Anime/ElHazardTheMagnificentWorld'' OAV. Princess Fatora is highly praised by nearly every character who talks about her. [[spoiler: When we finally meet her, though, [[{{Jerkass}} one wonders why she was really missed at all.]]]]
** [[spoiler:Maybe while she was absent everyone kinda forgot about how abrasive she is...]]
* In ''Anime/GundamSEEDDestiny'' Heine Westenfluss is set up as an ace pilot like Athrun as well as charming and a really nice guy. Unfortunately, he doesn't get a chance to live up to his extreme reputation since [[spoiler:he dies too soon.]] The fact that he spends most of his screentime lecturing Athrun about how he should just ignore his doubts and do his job doesn't help.
** He's more of a {{foil}} to Athrun given his short role.
* In ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'', ever since the truth of his actions was made known, ''many'' characters have been heaping praise on [[spoiler: Itachi]]. Whether or not he deserves it is heavily debatable (he did ''horrible'' things [[spoiler: in the name of defending his home and maintaining peace]]). It usually isn't too bad, but it gets weird when even the freaking [[spoiler: First Hokage]] says that [[spoiler: Itachi]] is a better shinobi than he is, and the [[spoiler: Third Hokage]] says that he had Kage-level wisdom [[ImprobableAge at the age of seven]]. Even Sasuke and Naruto, whose lives have been made significantly worse by his actions, shill the guy like nobody's business.
** During the Ten-tails-arc, many characters went out of their way to express how awesome Sakura became, and how she finally caught up to Sasuke and Naruto. While she got to make an memorable showcase of her powers, it doesn't last long before she's [[TheWorfEffect easily beaten by a villain]] or [[DemotedToExtra thrown back into the background]], and it really wasn't any more impressive than what other members of the Konoha 12 had shown- all of whom were completely ignored by those characters.
* A number of powerful wizards in ''Manga/FairyTail'' do live up to their hype. Particularly the ones who are given the title of Wizard Saint, or are the rarely seen allies of the main guild. However, most of the one-off villains are given quick hype to make them seem more threatening, and generally it's only the ArcVillain who manages to match whatever the other characters claim about their power.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* Happened with Kyle Rayner when he [[ReplacementScrappy replaced Hal Jordan]] as GreenLantern. Having folks like MartianManhunter and Franchise/{{Superman}} (and Franchise/{{Batman}} and Sandman) say what a terrific guy you are, completely unsolicited, led to much eye-rolling even amongst fans of the character, who felt that such shilling validated many complaints that haters of the character had. Luckily, Rayner managed to survive the shilling and [[RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap was officially rescued from the scrappy pile.]]
** It's been widely joked that Kyle got shilled ''specifically'' because DC were pissed off that fans (rightfully) saw how TheDeathOfSuperman and {{Azrael}} [[{{Knightfall}} becoming Batman]] were temporary plotlines. DC were deadset that Kyle would stick, hence the shilling. However, Grant Morrison refused to give Kyle the same treatment in ''[[JusticeLeagueOfAmerica JLA]]''. Yes, most of the team respected him, but he had to work to really be seen as something more than a rookie. And TheFlash was open about his initial dislike of Kyle and it took a good amount of character development for them to become friends. As a result, Kyle Rayner grew his own crop of decidedly enthusiastic and loyal fans...
* Invoked in TheFlash comics for Barry Allen after his return to life. Writer Geoff Johns acknowledged that people who haven't read any story with Barry in it before (anyone who started reading comics after the ''[[CrisisOnInfiniteEarths Crisis]]'', which is to say, anyone under 30), will see him as a ReplacementScrappy for Wally, so his first priority in the ''[[ResetButton Flash: Rebirth]]'' miniseries was to sell Barry to newer readers. The first issue of ''Rebirth'' is mostly scenes of every single major superhero in the DCU talking about how awesome Barry is, save for Kid Flash, who refuses to accept him because he's not the one he grew up with, essentially making him their StrawFan. The panel cited most often is one where it is said that crime has gone up drastically since Barry's death... despite Wally being much faster than Barry. A close silver medal would go to the one of Jay Garrick, who started fighting crime decades before Barry was even born, declaring that "Barry Allen made me the Flash."
* PostCrisis, LoisLane got a lot of free shilling from most characters having anything to do with her. They would praise Clark Kent for having such a wonderful wife, and ''{{Superman}}'' would also rave about how great a woman she was.
* Occurs in regards to the character of Carlie Cooper in the SpiderMan comics. Much is made about how great a person she is, how perfect not only is she for Peter, but how perfect she is in general. Unfortunately, this sort of shilling has done little to endear her character to the general fanbase, as her positive character traits come off more as an informed ability while her more negative character traits are overlooked. And did we mention she's [[{{Tuckerization}} named after]] the daughter of the guy who pushed OneMoreDay?
** As of Dan Slott's run, however, this has been toned down into effective non-existence and Carlie has been effectively sidelined. However, Carlie has been replaced by Cindy Moon, alias Silk. She has virtually all of Spider-Man's powers, was bitten by the same spider as him and is a major part of the ''ComicBook/SpiderVerse'' storyline. People are hoping, though, that her new series'll get her away from this.
* When Faith got added to the JusticeLeague during the "Age of Obsidian" arc, she was a completely unknown character. Predictably, her arrival was accompanied by other characters mentioning how powerful or friendly she was. The rapid acceptance was justified with the revelation that she has the subconscious ability to inspire trust in others.
* ComicBook/TheSentry's entire character was based on this; supposedly, he was an amazing hero who debuted in the SilverAge and did a lot of really awesome things before being erased by CosmicRetcon. This was pretty clever in his original miniseries, but his addition to the mainstream comics ended up [[IndecisiveParody running the joke so thin it wasn't even a joke anymore]]. When he finally kicked the bucket to [[AndThereWasMuchRejoicing much rejoicing]], everyone in the Marvel Universe showed up to his funeral to talk about how he'd always been there for them and he was a really great guy, nervously skirting around all the times he was useless, whiny, and homicidal.
* ComicBook/CaptainAmerica is one of the few characters who can ([[DependingOnTheWriter usually]]) get away with this without audiences rolling their eyes. It's fine for all the other characters to talk about how awesome and heroic he is, because that's like 90% of his character. He was chosen for the SuperSoldier project because everyone who spent five minutes with him knew that, despite his physical shortcomings, he was a clever and intelligent young man with a good heart who just wanted to help others.
* ''Comicbook/JLAActOfGod'' is infamous for having depowered superheroes gushing about how great Batman is because he has always been fighting crimes without powers... yet isn't the sole BadassNormal in the league. To add insult to the injury, in this story, Batman is a huge arrogant jerk who only helps a group of depowered heroes only after they come to him.

[[folder: Fanfic]]
* The first book of ''Fanfic/TheLastSon'' is ''infamous'' for this, particularly where Superman and [[SickeninglySweethearts his]] [[RomanticPlotTumour love]] [[MarySue interest]] [[spoiler: Alison Blaire, a.k.a. Alia Ka-Lir]] are concerned. The former is the most powerful being on the planet, bar none and never has to use his full powers, immune to telepathy, gets over trauma ridiculously quickly, a super genius with DeusExMachina levels of technology, all while being college age at most. On top of this, he frequently proves to be HolierThanThou, giving people moral lectures that are never disputed by anyone but villains and the X-Men spend the entirety of Book One as his cheerleaders, effectively. The latter is a MarySue classic, with bucket loads of [[InformedAttribute informed attributes]] and the only people who dislike her are the various resident [[AlphaBitch alpha bitches]] and villains. It continues, to one extent or another, through the first three books - it's still too early in Book Four to really tell - and is considered something of a black mark on an otherwise very well conceived story.
** Though Book 3 did (finally) give [[spoiler: Alison]] some genuine CharacterDevelopment and an effective DarkAndTroubledPast.
** It really doesn't help that the story does this for the entire [[DCComics DC Universe]] at the expense of the Marvel Universe, something which is being slowly rectified.

* ''Film/TheRoom'':
** Lisa is consistently [[InformedAttractiveness described as being incredibly beautiful]]. Her actress isn't ugly, mind you, but it comes off as somewhat over-the-top for someone who would be HollywoodHomely in a more mainstream film.
** More so with Johnny, who is extremely successful at his job and is constantly described as a paragon of compassion and selflessness who does nothing to provoke Lisa's actions. Needless to say Johnny is played by the movie's writer/director/producer.
* One criticism of ''Film/PearlHarbor'' is the way that many characters gush over Rafe's skill as a pilot. From what we see, [[InformedAbility Rafe isn't much better than]] the best friend who sings his praises the whole movie. He's made out to be a noble hero by everyone, including [[HistoricalDomainCharacter Jimmy Doolittle]] and an RAF Pilot who tells him that if there are others like him where Rafe comes from then, by god, [[AmericaWinsTheWar America will kick the world's ass.]] Makes you wonder why Randall Wallace didn't stretch the movie by another hour so Rafe could join up with the Flying Tigers and the likes of Claire Chennault and Ed Rector could gush over him some more.
* Mercilessly parodied in ''Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail'' by Sir Robin's Minstrel, who keeps gushing in song about "Brave Sir Robin" (despite repeated commands to shut up) while Sir Robin is trying to avoid picking a fight, and [[SugarWiki/FunnyMoments goes on gushing about it]] even after Sir Robin has fled in abject cowardice.
-->'''Minstrel''': Brave Sir Robin ran away!
-->'''Robin''': No!
-->'''Minstrel''': Bravely ran away, away.
-->'''Robin''': I didn't!
-->'''Minstrel''': When danger reared its ugly head,
---->He bravely turned his tail and fled.
-->'''Robin''': No!
-->'''Minstrel''': Yes, brave Sir Robin turned about,
-->'''Robin''': I didn't!
-->'''Minstrel''': And gallantly he chickened out.
---->Bravely taking to his feet,
-->'''Robin''': I never did!
-->'''Minstrel''': He beat a very brave retreat.
-->'''Robin''': All lies!
-->'''Minstrel''': Oh, bravest of the braaave, Sir Robin!
-->'''Robin''': I never!
* A villainous example: Bane is treated as a MemeticBadass by Alfred in ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises''. At that point in the movie, all he'd really done is rob a bank. It was a daring, well-executed bank heist, sure. (Although some of the machinations involved fall apart [[FridgeLogic under scrutiny]].) But he's hardly "like nothing you've ever faced before" when he's following an act like ''Film/{{The Dark Knight}}'''s Joker.

* This is, more or less, the ''only'' way that the [[AuthorAvatar two]] [[CanonSue main]] [[SmallNameBigEgo characters]] in the ''LeftBehind'' series ever interact with non-main characters. It's either Buck and Rayford are thinking about how special they are and what a privilege it is for the rest of their unnamed co-workers and friends to associate with them, or it's these unnamed co-workers and friends gushing about them. This can be seen as the authors ignoring the ShowDontTell method of storytelling, merely ''telling'' us how earnest, passionate, and sincere their characters are rather than actually ''showing'' any of these qualities.
** [[BigBad Nicolae]] [[TheAntichrist Carpathia]]. The narrator constantly talks about how enthralled he is at the man's "genius" speeches and "complete charm". The speeches he gives, though, mostly consist of random facts and dates connected by childish analysis that would fail as high school reports. Also, he gives a speech that involves NAMING EVERY COUNTRY IN THE UNITED NATIONS. The delegates are of course wowed by his oratory skills and give him a standing ovation.
* Parodied and PlayedForLaughs in the [[Discworld/TheColourOfMagic first]] [[Discworld/TheLightFantastic two]] ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' novels. Rincewind is the most incompetent and cowardly wizard on the Disc, even to the point that he can't spell the word right. His companion Twoflower, however, thinks he's the mightiest magician who ever lived. This really gets on Rincewind's nerves, especially when he's going on about what a mighty warrior he is, and all the wizzard wants to do is run far, far away.
* S.D. Perry's novelizations of the ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil'' series go to extraordinary lengths to sell readers on how smart, brave, tough, smart, gifted, smart and really, ''really'' [[DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment smart]] Rebecca Chambers is, despite her scientific knowledge never rising above what anyone who paid attention in junior-high chemistry would already know. Every sympathetic character, even the protagonists from the actual games, gets at least one inner monologue describing how fiercely independent, resourceful and intelligent she is, and she becomes the star of ''two'' original novels where she basically saves the world singlehandedly while riding atop a massive, cresting wave of adulation from the other characters. Keep in mind these books were written before the 2002 ''[=REmake=]'' [[RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap changed Rebecca's characterization]] into that of a well-grounded and very stressed-out young woman in way over her head, so Perry's only source of inspiration for her genius MarySue version was the obliviously cheerful dingbat from the 1996 original.
* Can be applied to any of the main cast in ''Literature/{{Twilight}}''. We're ''told'' how wonderful Edward and the Cullens are (from Bella's POV anyway), but their actions and behavior throughout the series suggest anything but.
** This trope applies to Bella as well. Everyone always talks about how amazing and special she is, but from our perspective she's really done nothing to deserve this unending praise.
* Eragon of the ''Literature/InheritanceCycle'' gets plenty of this. Several of his accomplishments are frequently praised by the other characters, even though most aren't extraordinary compared to what others have done. This is most evident regarding Eragon's [[InformedAbility skill with words]], despite the fact he supposedly has terrible grammar and no practice at being a writer or giving speeches. He's also praised as a great and wonderful hero despite doing several selfish or un-heroic acts, including [[MoralDissonance when Eragon chose to hang out with his friends and ignored a man who asked Eragon to heal his dying wife]].
* In the final book of ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'', Elayne is chosen to be in charge of the armies of light. She was the perfect choice, a wonderful leader, and did a great job. We know this, not because we see any examples of her leadership, but because at least once a chapter someone comes up to her and tells her what a wonderful leader she is and how glad they are that she was chosen to be in charge.
* Katniss' father and sister have strong elements of this in ''Literature/TheHungerGames'' and Peeta is a mild case as well. The book is told from Katniss' perspective. Her father died years ago and she only remembers him as a saint, forgetting or ignoring his bad qualities. She adores her baby sister and is very protective of her and can't imagine anyone not loving her. As for Peeta, the elements of shilling with regards to him are subtle clues that [[spoiler:she's falling in love with him]].
* Taken UpToEleven with Zoey Redbird in ''Literature/TheHouseOfNight''. Nyx chose her because she is supposedly wise beyond her years, is a fount of empathy and compassion, and is well versed in both the old ways and the modern world. She has an instant fanclub of people that serve mainly to ooh and ahh over how wonderful she is, men fall at her feet in droves because of how beautiful and awesome she supposedly is, and she gets new tattoos and praise for her bravery from Nyx anytime she takes care of whatever problem is plaguing her that particular book. Actually reading the book shows us that she's a stupid, shallow, judgmental, hypocrite that doesn't do much of anything except bemoan her boyfriend problems until the authors decide that something needs to happen so the book can end.
* In ''Literature/TheFaultInOurStars'', Hazel's description of Augustus Waters, from the very first time she meets him, is pretty glowing, focusing on his good looks, charisma, and the connection they have in conversation, compared to her descriptions of other people (which tend to be affectionate, but don't gloss over flaws). This ends up fading away as she gets to know him, even though she falls in love with him (and he with her) she gets to see his flaws in greater detail.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/AgentsOfSHIELD'':
** One of the initial reasons comic fans reacted poorly to the show was because of the writers' insistence on constantly comparing Grant Ward, a CanonForeigner, to Comicbook/BlackWidow, an actual [[Comicbook/TheAvengers Avenger]] from the comics and [[Film/TheAvengers movie]]. It got to the height of absurdity when it was stated that Ward was more adept at trickery and undercover work than Widow, who in the past has ''managed to outsmart [[Selfdemonstrating/{{Loki}} the God of lies and trickery himself]]''. [[spoiler:Though it becomes somewhat {{Justified}} in hindsight, since this provided the first clue to the series' outcome: Ward was in fact TheMole and EvilAllAlong without anyone within S.H.I.E.L.D. being aware of this fact, meaning he really ''was'' that good as a double agent, if not within his original role.]]
** Skye also took a lot of flack, largely for the fact that nearly everyone else on the team was head-over-heels about her by the second episode, despite knowing she was an anti-S.H.I.E.L.D. hacker who hadn't yet done much to prove her new loyalties: Coulson already saw her as a substitute daughter, Ward and Fitz both had crushes on her, and Simmons had formed a sisterly friendship with her. Only May ever expressed any real doubts about letting her work with them, while everyone else constantly praised her hacking skills and her ability to be warm and caring with "ordinary" people, as if she was the only person within S.H.I.E.L.D. to possess either quality (she's really not - Agent Weaver, the head of S.H.I.E.L.D academy, is one of the most empathetic figures in the show and is rightly employed in an area that makes use of that quality, while Coulson and Fitz-Simmons are frequently shown to be at least as caring and compassionate at Skye). Even when she betrayed the team for her ex-boyfriend and fellow hacktivist early on, [[EasilyForgiven everyone got over it within a couple of episodes]]. Luckily, the writers managed to reel it back in enough to even give it a bit of a FandomNod later in the series, when Skye's legal name was revealed to be [[spoiler:MarySue]].
** Ironically, the other three [[CanonForeigner Canon Foreigners]] in the main cast, all of whom ''were'' deliberately set up to possess LivingLegend status within S.H.I.E.L.D. - [[MemeticBadass May]] and [[TheDividual Fitz-]][[TheSmartGuy Simmons]] - weren't the subjects of much shilling at all, and as such were generally much better received by fans than Ward or Skye, especially to begin with.
* ''Series/AmericanIdol'' has often made a habit of this with the judges often going on about how awesome some contestants were regardless of public opinion; most notably with Season 11 contender Phillip Phillips who despite having little vocal range and repetitive performances, the judges relentlessly praised the heck out of him and thus he won the season.
* ''Series/BabylonFive'': Had a LowerDeckEpisode in its last season, featuring a couple of maintenance workers who end up praising new character Captain Lochley and telling her that she was OK in their book. Apparently, both of the two "little guys" were [[WordOfGod openly]] {{Author Avatar}}s.
* ''{{Bones}}'': In the sixth season, for the character of Hannah Burley there is constant reinforcement of her beauty, talent and intelligence. While she is attractive, she's actually about as interesting as raw vegetables when she first appears and in every scene she appears for the 7 episodes of her arch. Other popular characters in the show (including Angela, who is the only character who openly admitted to hating Hannah - in a deleted scene) constantly refer to Hannah and Dr Brennan as being "friends", although the scenes depicting their "friendship" seem awkward at best (especially one scene in which Hannah makes Brennan give her her sunglasses). Many fans found it frustrating, and it certainly didn't make the character any more likable.
* ''Series/CriminalMinds'' did this a couple of times, starting right from the pilot, which spends a lot of time talking up Jason Gideon to the obvious annoyance of Morgan and exasperation of Hotch.
** Two seasons later, when Gideon left the show, his replacement David Rossi got talked up as another 'legendary' profiler. Like Gideon, he quickly proved himself worthy of the praise but not without flaws.
** In fact, the only time the shilling wound up trumpeting an InformedAbility was with Ashley Seaver, whose supposedly-exceptional academy scores are mentioned repeated in spite of her tendency to point out the obvious and make bad decisions in the field. This did not help her BaseBreaker status.
** Alex Blake suffered similarly to Gideon and Rossi; characters boasting of how impressive her resume was. Unfortunately, we almost never got to see any of this, not that it prevented the cast from talking her up and expressing how great she was from [[RememberTheNewGuy incidents where they meet before]].
* ''Series/{{Degrassi}}'': This happens quite a bit with Mia during Season 8, much to Holly J's (and many fans') annoyance. The character was seen by many as being unrealistic, but the showrunners kept trying to portray her as amazing. One episode focusing on another character's attempts to woo her was even titled "Uptown Girl" after the Billy Joel song (at that point, the show was still all of its episodes after 80's songs), as if to remind the audience how obviously desirable and amazing Mia supposedly was.
** One particularly {{Egregious}} example was in ''Degrassi Takes Manhattan'', when Jay was telling Spinner that Emma wouldn't screw him over like Jane did. [[SarcasmMode Because Emma NEVER cheated on anybody]]. It's especially perplexing that Jay would talk Emma up like this, because a few years ago, she ''prostituted'' herself to him. For rubber bracelets.
** Then there's Alli Bhandari, who's treated like a brilliant, honest, funny girl who any guy would want, despite being shallow, pretentious, and doing just about everything a girl should never do, even things that in the past have ruined characters' reputation (she even once considered prostitution in an attempt at revenge). However, the big leap was only recently, when she blew off a guy because he had a baby, and then had a fling in Paris while completely ignoring him.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** Rose Tyler is often seen this way. The Doctor and Captain Jack would gush about how special she was... though a few fans would argue that there was very little evidence of this and considered her a CanonSue.
** And to some fans, the shilling got worse even after she left the show with Martha, the next companion leaving because she felt as though she couldn't compare to the Tenth Doctor's memories of Rose and Rose returning to help save the entire universe in the next season.
** Critics of Steven Moffat's tenure as showrunner often point to this as one his primary weaknesses. He frequently breaks the ShowDontTell rule, ''especially'' with Clara and how great his Doctors are.
* Moffat does the same on his ''Series/{{Sherlock}}'' series, where characters often talk up what an amazing person Sherlock is. Those who mention the fact that he's actually a huge asshole are portayed as petty, borderline incompetent jealous people, at best.
* ''EverybodyLovesRaymond'': Showrunners gradually became aware that the conflict between Debra and Marie was polling well with certain key demographics, and began playing up this conflict to the point where it became the show's new focus, and became intent on shilling Debra as much as humanly possible (while Marie was an elderly lady who represented a PeripheryDemographic, Debra was an attractive soccer mom who could be more easily marketed as "relatable" to the Baby Boomers who made up the show's core audience). To that end, the show began making her ProgressivelyPrettier and began portraying her as being always right, even when she clearly wasn't (whenever she resorted to physical and emotional abuse against her husband, the show always portrayed it as a YouGoGirl moment). They also began trying to make her husband more doofus-like, in order to make her seem more sympathetic (instead, it ended up being a BaseBreaker; their tactics worked on a portion of the audience, who think she's a saint, but the rest find Debra to be a smug and utterly annoying KarmaHoudini who gets away with domestic abuse on her husband thanks to a DoubleStandard). Her descent into Sue-dom has been a point of contention among the fanbase ever since.
* ''{{Friends}}'': Rachel. Other characters consistently talk about how beautiful and sexy she is, about her bravery in making it on her own, her being a 'career woman' and later how she's a great [[spoiler: mother]]. Three regular characters are DevotedToYou towards her at different parts in the series, and want nothing more than to be with her. She's not noticeably more attractive than Monica or Phoebe (just more into her looks), she's no more dedicated to her career than most of the gang and actually seems lazy in comparison to Ross and Monica, her [[spoiler: mothering skills]] are laughable at best and neglectful at worst. And truthfully as a girlfriend she's ''extremely'' difficult to please so why so many men are crazy about her is confusing.
** The praises of her 'making it on her own' are the worst offenders. She ''did'' admirably abandon her spoiled life but it's worth remembering that she waited until she was twenty five years old, had wasted a college education, dragged a guy along until he was standing at the altar, and spent her father's money on a ridiculously fancy wedding, ''before'' deciding to do this. Plus she then has five people running around helping her 'do it alone'. Of these other five people, Phoebe survived on the streets from the age of 14, Chandler has been taking care of himself since he was a teenager because of his neglectful parents, Monica fought for everything she got against an emotionally abusive mother and demanded nothing from anyone else and Joey rebelled against his entire family to become an actor. Rachel's 'independence' and 'bravery' doesn't look all that impressive.
* ''Series/GeneralHospital'': Brenda Barrett can fit into this. When she's not in Port Charles (and even when she ''is'' there), characters are constantly singing her praises. Both men and women rave about how beautiful she is and how ''perfect'' she is, and most every heroine on the show is compared to her and told how they will never measure up to her. Not to mention she's been designated as the soulmate to ''two'' different men on the show. Brenda however is far from a perfect person, and her returns usually result in the ruination of a few relationship. But almost ''nobody'' has anything bad to say about her, and anyone who does is vilified for it.
* ''Series/{{Glee}}'': Increasingly, the show treats Will and Finn this way -- particularly, other characters stand around gushing about how talented, good-hearted, and attractive they both are.
** One of the complaints about the first half of the Season 2 was that this went on a lot with [[AuthorAvatar Kurt Hummel]] in spite of sometimes [[KickTheDog treating his friends]] [[JerkAss rather cruelly]]. This culminated in "Furt" which was a whole episode of [[IncrediblyLamePun Kurt-shilling]]. This was the episode where his dad and Finn's mom got married, and yet ''everything'' was about Kurt. Finn's best man speech and even the parents' wedding vows were all about Kurt. Thankfully they let off on it after that, [[TrappedByMountainLions but did so by sending Kurt to Dalton]].
** Other characters constantly talk up Blaine as a talented, attractive dreamboat; especially in Season 3.
** Rachel Berry swims in an unending sea of this. Every character, even those who are rightfully put off by how incredibly self-centred and rude she is, fall over themselves to talk about how her singing voice is flawless, miraculous, the greatest thing they have ever heard, how she is destined to be a shining star. It even takes bald-faced Character Shilling from Tina to persuade the dean of Rachel's dream school to give her a second audition... after Rachel completely screwed her first one.
** To Rachel's credit, she does have enough personality and talent to back up the claims. Marley Rose on the other hand makes you think everyone is on some sort of drug considering that everyone talks up about how amazing she is. Yet she is as thick as two short planks, gets everything with no effort, Sue - yes Sue - cannot say a bad thing about her, is made to be uber-special within the Glee club for no reason, has the personality of a wet blanket, a complete waste of screen-time, and has two guys chasing after for no reason other that she is pretty.
* ''Series/GossipGirl'': With regards to Dan Humphrey. Especially grating in the series finale. [[spoiler:Throughout the series Gossip Girl has stalked them, outed their secrets, caused them trouble, humiliated them and all in all been an element of their lives that they've all complained about and wanted to see and end to. When they find out Gossip Girl is Dan everyone suddenly thinks s/he made their lives better and that no real harm was done even though ''a lot'' of harm was done.]]
* ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'':
** The show began to do this in season 5 with Don. He was introduced as "the guy Robin would inevitably marry," but his subsequent appearances paint him as annoying and flawed. However, once he started showing romantic interest in Robin, he met the group and suddenly Marshall does not stop gushing about him. We don't see their interactions, but Marshall opens by saying that he is "smart, handsome and funny". This is jarring because two episodes ago we were supposed to hate the guy.
** At the same time that was going on, Barney was [[{{Flanderization}} flanderized]] into a supreme womanizer who scored with every girl he hit on... and the rest of the cast inexplicably became his enthusiastic cheerleaders, even though in earlier seasons they'd only kind of put up with it and even expressed occasional disgust at some of Barney's [[ComedicSociopathy slimier methods.]] They rooted for Barney every time he hit on a girl, actively helped him out at one point, and celebrated every time he scored (they did a lot of celebrating). It was as if the writers were desperately telling their viewers, "See? See? See how much better Barney is as an exaggerated caricature of himself than [[FanPreferredCouple when he was paired with Robin?"]]
*** This is [[DeconstructedTrope Deconstructed]] in a later episode when it's revealed that Robin was actually very hurt when Barney scored girls, and upset when the group cheered him on. In flashbacks, she's shown watching the original scene with a blank face, then quickly ducking into a private space to cry.
*** And then the wedding arc showed that Barney maturing enough to commit to Robin is a very good thing, with the gang just as enthusiastic about it as they were about his antics. It also implies what would've happened if Barney ''hadn't'' matured and gotten married, using [[spoiler:his brother James, who is Barney's gay (and black) counterpart; James gets a divorce because he can't stop sleeping around, and is briefly consumed by self-loathing.]]
* ''Series/{{Revolution}}'': Done by Nora on behalf of Charlie, just in case we had forgotten how "special" she is. In fact, Miles can't ever seem to call her out on being an IdiotHero without being seen as a bastard. Fortunately, Charlie hasn't received any shilling for many episodes now, so it's not as extreme as some other examples listed here.
* ''Series/RobinHood'': Kate is given this to an unGodly extreme. Think Lana's situation, [[UpToEleven but even worse.]]
* ''Series/{{Smallville}}'': Lana spent the first several years of the show's run being the girl everyone was in love with; she was Clark's long-term hopeless crush, the object of every villain's twisted affection (so that Clark could rescue her every week or so) and everyone else's bestest friend. All of the praise heaped upon the character couldn't hide the fact that [[{{JerkSue}} she really wasn't all that amazing, and would often indulge in petty behavior]]. As the show wore on, her awesomeness [[GodModeSue caught up with all the shilling of her when she got a dose of superpowers]]. This made her all the more irritating and she finally left the show in season eight.
* ''Series/StargateUniverse'':
** By the latter half of season 2, Scott's line telling Young, "You are a good commander!" was added to every episode intro, apparently in an attempt to convince the audience of just that. He wasn't.
** Scott himself. He's constantly touted on being a great leader, really gets around and the creators even called him the "Jack [=O'Neill=] of ten years ago." Fans countered that the comparison doesn't work because we actually ''like'' Jack.
* ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'':
** In one particularly glaring example from a first-season episode, a SufficientlyAdvancedAlien known as "The Traveler" stopped-in seemingly for the exclusive purpose of telling the crew how wonderful Wesley was. While Wesley hadn't ''quite'' become a CreatorsPet by that point, further treatment along these lines ended up as one of the most definitive examples of CreatorsPet. He is, in fact, the [[Administrivia/RenamedTropes former]] TropeNamer for both CreatorsPet (The Wesley) and this trope (Shilling the Wesley).
** Another ''TNG'' example, "[[http://www.agonybooth.com/recaps/Star_Trek/The_Next_Generation/The_Outrageous_Okona.aspx The Outrageous Okona]]", did nothing actually outrageous except taking advantage of his incredibly hyped reputation as a [[AllGirlsWantBadBoys wild maverick man of action]] to get laid. Popular with the ladies, but not with the fans, who largely consider him a joke.
** In-universe, the Zakdorn. The species relies on their reputation as master strategists, which has ensured that nobody ever dared to fight them. Characters who meet one on [=TNG=] are less than impressed with his abilities.
** The episode "Peak Performance" actually manages to invert this for the guest-star Kolrami. The entirety of the episode consists of the entire cast attempting to hammer into the viewer how "smug" he is supposed to be, but in reality, every crewmember of the Enterprise spent the entire episode being ''far'' more obnoxious and smug than he ever acts.
* ''Series/{{Survivor}}'': Rob. Also, Russell. The reunion for Redemption Island was especially terrible, essentially being an hour of "Isn't Rob awesome?" in between talking to Russell and asking if he'd return, or asking if Phillip was that crazy. Many fans cheered just because the worst season of Survivor finally ended, and with the thoughts that Rob would ''finally go away''. He and Russell still get mentions every season thereafter.
* ''TheWire'': A lot of characters in the third season comment on just how bad and cold Marlo Stanfield is, actually saying that he's "for real". As it turns out, he really is.
* ''Series/{{Charmed}}'': The Charmed Ones as a collective count in later seasons; they become increasingly focused on their own lives away from magic and forsake their own destiny, and openly state that saving lives has become a chore, all the while the forces of good love and revere them - often making mention of their selflessness. They do get called on it several times, [[UnintentionallySympathetic but always by demons and/or explicitly evil characters the audience isn't meant to side with]]. Coincidentally, they only started to act like this around Season 5, when two of the three leads became Executive Producers.


[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' does this so often it is hardly notable, with every faction update portraying said faction as mighty and unstoppable and everyone else should tremble at their very presence, purposefully to [[CrackIsCheaper sell more models]]. However the Space Marines, especially the Ultramarines receive a ridiculous amount of shilling even by these standards. The 5th Edition codex changed them from the "standard" Space Marine chapter, whose main characteristic was being a jack of all trades, to the epitome of Imperial virtue and the pinnacle to which all other Space Marine chapters aspire to emulate. The codex being mostly written by [[RunningTheAsylum a confessed Ultramarine fanboy]] ''might'' have had something to do with it.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Here's a fun exercise for Horde players in ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'': While leveling to the cap, keep track of the number of [=NPCs=] you encounter who refer to Garrosh Hellscream as a master tactician or military genius. This would probably not be so aggravating if he ever actually displayed any of his supposed skill, but usually [[InformedAbility we're just told about it]] and the times we actually see him in action he's incompetent at best (notably, he sends the player character on a SuicideMission in Borean Tundra, and his attempt to ambush the Alliance in Twilight Highlands backfires spectacularly when Deathwing shows up with a fleet of Twilight dragons and wrecks the now-defenseless Horde fleet). And to add insult to injury you then incite an insurrection against the Dragonmaw by...talking about how awesome Garrosh is.
** It's made even worse that in ''Wrath of the Lich King'', while in the Dragonblight zone, you get a letter from Saurfang stating how Garrosh's tactics are ''working'' and that it's winning over the support of the greater Horde. This can come almost immediately after the aforementioned suicide mission in Borean Tundra, where Garrosh's incompetence is laid bare for you to see. It was at this point many players began to realize Garrosh was being propped up less by his in-universe merit and more for the narrative sake of the ConflictBall.
** As for the Alliance, Varian Wrynn has had some shilling done for him as well. It started with the {{Retcon}} that he drove Onyxia out of Stormwind rather than the players, but it became especially egregious in Mists of Pandaria. For example the scenario, A Little Patience, has him coming up with a better tactic for fighting the Horde than Tyrande Whisperwind, even though she has THOUSANDS OF YEARS MORE EXPERINCE AT WARFARE THAN HIM.
* By the time of ''VideoGame/BlazBlueContinuumShift Extend'', [[EnsembleDarkhorse Makoto Nanaya]] has been enjoying quite a bit shilling for someone who's just minding her own business rather than taking part of the plot actively. Hazama considers her a SpannerInTheWorks, Relius Clover becomes obsessed with her apparent 'strong soul', as he described, and the one moment she met the resident snobby bitch Rachel... the latter wasn't even being snobby and instead praising her like hell. Whether she lived up to the shilling is for the sequel to report.
* Played with in the ''Franchise/MetalGear'' series. All the characters comment on how legendary a hero Solid Snake is, and despite being able to live up to his reputation, Snake constantly insists that he is anything but a hero.
* Inverted in the ''VideoGame/MonkeyIsland'' series. Guybrush wants to be recognized by everybody for his "success" in defeating Le Chuck and constantly boasts about how heroic he is for it. The problem? Nobody else gives a damn. He eventually gets so accustomed to this that, in ''VideoGame/TalesOfMonkeyIsland'', he's ''stunned'' that Morgan [=LeFlay=] actually ''has'' heard of him and his exploits.
** It's less that no one cares and more that Guybrush has stretched his fame out to the point everyone is tired of hearing about it, up to writing ''three'' novels about his defeat of [=LeChuck=]. In fact, the plot of the second game is him trying to find a way to reignite his fame.
* In ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'', during the Citadel DLC, the entire team goes on a mission together, chock full of [[CasualDangerDialogue observations during a gunfight]], [[OhCrap scared realizations by their enemies on who the protagonists are]], and, [[FireForgedFriends quite fittingly]], the team teasing each other. Except, of course, for [[TheBigGuy Urdnot Wrex]], whom the rest of the party lavishes only praise - with the exception of Grunt, [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m8HHnTiBB0U who is constantly in a chest-pounding match with Wrex and poking fun at his age]] as well as praising him.
-->'''Grunt''': Don't listen to this fossil. The only thing he can defeat is a glass of warm milk.
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfXillia'': Milla is often lavished with praise by the others, Jude most of all. In many scenes, they remark on her courageousness, her strength, and her beauty. In the latter half of the game, Rowen and the others each remark about how she inspires them and say they feel motivated whenever she's with them. The gamer, however, [[InformedAttribute may not see those qualities]], making much of it seem undeserved.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* Played for dark humor during the fifth and sixth chapter of ''VisualNovel/UminekoNoNakuKoroNi'' where the narration and everyone keep going on about Erika Furudo. The problem is that there's so much gushing because it's [[spoiler:Lambdadelta's script]] and she's also callous and an incredible bitch. She does end up satisfying her reputation. But she's still a bitch.

* ''WebComic/RedString'''s Yosue Makoto is two people: the one that everyone praises and the one that we are actually shown. The Makoto people speak highly over is a persistent, self-sacrificing "flirty goofball." The Makoto that we see, however, is shown time and time again to be opportunistic, jealous and rather unhealthily obsessed when it comes to his "devotion" to the object of his affection, Miharu.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* ''WebVideo/SailorMoonAbridged'' actually [[InvertedTrope inverts]] this.
-->'''Central Control:''' The fifth Sailor Scout will show up soon.
-->'''Luna:''' Oh good, we could use the help.
-->'''Central Control:''' No, trust me, you don't want this one.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Owen on ''WesternAnimation/TotalDrama,'' particularly during the second season. Most of his accomplishments are either a) based on dumb luck or b) somehow related to [[BigEater eating]], yet everybody acts like they're incredible talents. In the first episode of ''Total Drama Action'', for example, he manages to avoid being caught by the monster simply because he's too fat to pick up, then eats a bunch of fake food because he wouldn't just stop and listen to Chris tell him it was fake. But by coincidence he happened to burp out the key they were supposed to find, and immediately we get several other characters wowed by his accomplishment. When he's voted off by Courtney in a later episode, everyone acts like she's crossed the MoralEventHorizon, even though a.) he (and the other Grips) were all TheLoad in that day's challenge, and b.) she only had the deciding vote because the others all wasted theirs, voting for her despite her having immunity.
** Notably averted during the following seasons. In ''World Tour'', he is openly mocked by several other characters and made into a ButtMonkey. In seasons 4 and 5 he has cameos, but is likely to be mocked and abused as others.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'':
** PlayedForLaughs during the infamous "Poochie" episode. When pitching the character, Homer talks about putting extra emphasis on the new character by suggesting that, whenever he's not onscreen, other characters should be asking, "Where's Poochie?" When the episode actually airs, Itchy and Scratchy's very few lines center on how awesome Poochie is.
** A series-wide example. Marge is often shilled as being a wonderful mother when she's in fact emotionally abusive and almost as bad as Homer. Sometimes she looks better by comparison but she's most certainly not the Mother of the Year most characters say she is.
* A 1985 WesternAnimation/BettyBoop cartoon titled "The Romance Of Betty Boop" takes this to the extreme, with people gushing about how wonderful Betty is as she walks down the street. Yes, it's every bit as cringe-inducing as it sounds.
* ''WesternAnimation/BatmanTheBraveAndTheBold'' tends to go back and forth with treating Batman like the greatest human who ever lived, and actually putting him on even standings with whoever's [[ADayInTheLimelight the character of the day.]] At its worst you get examples like "Mayhem of the Music Meister!" where every superhero sing about how jealous of Batman they are.
** Possibly worse was the episode with CaptainAtom, presented as a SmugSuper who looks down on people without superpowers. He's basically a strawman there to make fun of Batman, while the rest of the [=JLI=] are shocked and insist that no, Batman is totally the ''best hero ever'' and certainly better than all of them.