->''"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."''
-->-- '''UsefulNotes/AlbertEinstein'''

All too often, a plot thread depends on one or more characters doing something really stupid. They don't have any chance of doing the smart thing, because then the plot-driving conflicts wouldn't happen.

Even if the stupidity is an organic outgrowth of prior characterization, that doesn't necessarily make it contrivance-free. As addressed in TheMovie and {{lampshade|Hanging}}d in the "Homer's Enemy" episode of ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'', the continued tolerance of Homer by his friends, his family, and his employer -- indeed, his very ''[[TooDumbToLive survival]]'' -- is simply unbelievable at this point. Then again, {{Rule of Funny}}.

Contrived stupidity commonly causes things like the collapse of ASimplePlan in a SitCom or the effectiveness of SchmuckBait in {{Slasher Movie}}s. It is often accompanied by the meta-stupidity of the other characters' ignorance of HanlonsRazor. It is vulnerable to FridgeLogic; however, do remember that TropesAreNotBad.

On the other hand, it should be noted that many Contrived Stupidity Tropes are also TruthInTelevision to some extent and have several RealLife examples.

Contrast with IntelligenceTropes.
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!!Tropes:
[[index]]
* AchievementsInIgnorance
* AlcoholInducedIdiocy
* ApatheticCitizens
* BondVillainStupidity
* ButThouMust
** StupidityIsTheOnlyOption
* CallousnessTowardsEmergency
* ClosedCircle
* {{Clutching Hand Trap}}
* CreditCardPlot
* CultureBlind
* CuriosityKilledTheCast
* CutsceneIncompetence
* DamselScrappy
* DeusExitMachina
* DitchTheBodyguards
* DramaticSlip
* DugInDeeper
* ExplainingYourPowerToTheEnemy
* ForgotAboutHisPowers
* ForgotICouldntSwim
* ForgottenPhlebotinum
* ForgotToFeedTheMonster
* GenreBlindness
** ContractualGenreBlindness
** RealityShowGenreBlindness
* GullibleLemmings
* GunsInChurch
* HandInTheHole
* HoldingBackThePhlebotinum (sometimes)
* HoldingBothSidesOfTheConversation
* IdiotBall
** ConflictBall
** DistressBall
** HeroBall
*** OutOfSightOutOfMind
*** VillainExitStageLeft
** ThirdActStupidity
** VillainBall
*** BondVillainStupidity
*** CutLexLuthorACheck
*** JustBetweenYouAndMe
*** RevealingCoverup
* IdiotPlot
* IJustShotMarvinInTheFace
* IllNeverTellYouWhatImTellingYou
* ItSeemedLikeAGoodIdeaAtTheTime
* JustEatGilligan
* JustEatTheMacGuffin
* LeftYourLifesaverBehind
* LethallyStupid
* MercyLead
* TheMillstone
* NeverRecycleYourSchemes
* NoMeansYes
* NoPeripheralVision
* NotAZombie
* OutOfContextEavesdropping
* PaperThinDisguise
* PhlebotinumInducedStupidity, when used for the purposes of the plot.
* PingPongNaivete
* PlotSensitiveSnoopingSkills
* PoorCommunicationKills
* RecognitionFailure
* ReedRichardsIsUseless
* RememberedICouldFly
* RunningIntoTheWindow
* SelectiveObliviousness
* StrangerSafety
* StupidityInducingAttack, when someone's actually trying to create and weaponise this in-story.
* StupidSacrifice
* StupidSurrender
* TooDumbToLive
* TreacherousSpiritChase
* ViolationOfCommonSense
* WhatAnIdiot
** ChainedToABed
** HaveYouToldAnyoneElse
** OnceIsNotEnough
[[/index]]
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