->''"Just because you're an angel doesn't mean you have to be a fool."''
-->-- ''Literature/GoodOmens'', Creator/TerryPratchett and Creator/NeilGaiman

Good Is Not Dumb is the trope where a [[NiceGuy sincerely good, kind, and polite character]] is [[GoodIsDumb underestimated by others because of their kind nature]].

Unlike ObfuscatingStupidity, Good Is Not Dumb does not involve any deception at all -- the subject is ''genuinely'' nice and honest, but the [[CynicismTropes cynicism of others]] lead them to misread the character as TheDitz, a GentlemanThief, or some other [[WideEyedIdealist gullible]] or [[BitchInSheepsClothing deceptive archetype]]. After all, no one ''really'' [[SillyRabbitIdealismIsForKids gets through life being kind and trusting to everyone]], right?

[[SillyRabbitCynicismIsForLosers Wrong.]]

Almost inevitably, the [[IncorruptiblePurePureness genuine goodness]] of the character will triumph, often accompanied by the [[HoistByHisOwnPetard comeuppance]] of the disbeliever. The ConMan will be thwarted, the [[JadeColoredGlasses skeptical cynic]] will be surprised by ThePowerOfTrust, and everyone will discover that [[LetsGetDangerous "good" is not a synonym for "clueless victim"]].

A direct inversion of GoodIsDumb, GoodIsNotNice, and DumbIsGood. Someone who is Good Is Not Dumb may realize that being nice to villains simply isn't going to cut it, so they may incorporate GoodIsNotSoft. The ultimate stage of this is the GuileHero who can play TheChessmaster's game without falling into the ambiguity or clear villainy of the MagnificentBastard.

Compare and contrast with WideEyedIdealist, GoodIsNotNice, GentlemanAndAScholar, BewareTheNiceOnes, CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass, EvilCannotComprehendGood, and GoodIsOldFashioned. Also see RousseauWasRight, GoodIsNotSoft and IncorruptiblePurePureness.



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Kamijou Touma from ''LightNovel/ACertainMagicalIndex''. Practically the only skill he has against his enemies is his intellect, as [[AntiMagic Imagine Breaker]] has extremely limited range (he has to be literally touching the thing for it to work). He will often let himself take multiple punches that he knows he can manage if it will give him a chance to get in one good shot against his opponent.
* ''{{Manga/Gantz}}'': Masaru Kato. He is about as morally upstanding as they come, but he'll still pre-emptively ambush a guy on the toilet in order to defend himself and head off further violence.
* ''Manga/KarakuridoujiUltimo'': Sophia. He's on the Good Doji side, and is the embodiment of Wisdom.
* ''Manga/LiarGame'': Nao. Like Corporal Carrot, she started off extremely naive, honest and easily manipulated. As the game continued, however, we see that she is a lot smarter than she appears. She even [[spoiler:schemes with Fukunaga and doesn't tell Akiyama and pulled it off]], and often uses her innocent nature to trick and trap others.
* ''Franchise/LyricalNanoha'': Although most of the main cast of the franchise falls into either LawfulGood or NeutralGood alignment, they universally adhere to the spirit of it, not the letter. The normally polite and gentle Nanoha, for instance, won't hesitate to blast you out of the sky [[TrainingFromHell if it ensures your survival when crap actually hits the fan]], and trying to outsmart her in combat... [[CurbStompBattle is a very bad idea]]. Other characters display similar tendencies, perhaps because most of them [[TheHeavy started off as villains]] and the rest learned from them.
* ''Manga/DragonBall'':
** Zigzagged with Goku; while he ''is'' BookDumb and prone to falling for the simplest tricks, Goku is ''anything'' but stupid. Many enemies have fallen before him because they underestimated his intelligence and craftiness in battle. His battle instincts and ability to learn quickly often catches even his friends off-guard. He also often give life advice and words of wisdom to his friends and sons.
** His eldest son Gohan is the kind of boy parents would love their daughters to bring home: nice, polite etc. He's also a full-fledged GeniusBruiser who gets straight A's and smashes around beings stronger than ''the Gods themselves!!''
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'': Sakura, Kakashi, Shikamaru. Just to name a few examples.
* ''Manga/RurouniKenshin'': Himura Kenshin.
* ''Manga/SaintSeiya'': Crystal Saint, Marin, Albiore, Mu, and Dohko. They were the only Saints outside of the main cast who weren't fooled by [[spoiler: the fake Pope]].
* ''Manga/{{Trigun}}'': Vash the Stampede.
* ''Anime/{{Monster}}'': Dr. Tenma, Nina Fortner, and Dr. Reichwein.
* Taiki Kudou from ''Anime/DigimonXrosWars'' who is the smartest goggle-head in the series.
* The titular ''Manga/MasterKeaton''.
* ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'': Ed and Al are child prodigies, and adapt to situations quite well.
* ''Manga/SoutenKouro'': Cao Cao is serious about upholding the law, but he's not Lawful Stupid and knows a set-up when he sees it during his tenure as police chief. As he said in exposing the eunuch Jian Shi's plot against him: "I am not the kind of fool that would kill [[spoiler:His Highness]], who you had caught in your wicked scheme!"
* Lacus Clyne of ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamSeed''. One of the kindest and most forgiving people you would ever meet, and an ActualPacifist. Do ''not'' mistake any of this for weakness or naivete. [[spoiler:As of the end of ''Destiny'', she is the Chairwoman of the PLANT Supreme Council, essentially in charge of one of the global superpowers of the Earth Sphere.]]
* Many characters in ''Anime/LegendOfGalacticHeroes''. Siegfried Kircheis is a particularly striking example.
* Hajime of ''Anime/GatchamanCrowds'' is as optimistic as they come. While she does have one or two moments of ObfuscatingStupidity, most of the time she's completely sincere in how she acts, and she proves to be one of the most thoughtful characters of the series.
* Minor character Marlow in ''Manga/AttackOnTitan'', while in-universe is seen as foolish for wanting to change things, he is definitely not stupid, able to make astute observations that others haven't noticed or choose to ignore.
* Emma of ''Manga/ThePromisedNeverland'' is frequently criticized for being naive and idealistic, however she does frequently demonstrate this trope. Most notably [[spoiler: figuring out that Ray sacrificed members of the orphanage to experiment with the transmitters. She forgives him, [[DeathGlare but makes it clear that she won't tolerate it if he does anything like that again.]]]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ComicBook/{{Nightwing}} may be one of the most genuinely nice and beloved characters in the DCU, a WideEyedIdealist that always tries to see the best in people, but he is not and never will be stupid. Translates over to when he took over as Batman. When the villain of ''ComicBook/BatmanTheBlackMirror'' overestimates Dick's faith in the good of people, Dick takes advantage.
-->'''''Batman:''''' I ''am'' a softy and I do try to see the best in people... but that doesn't mean I'm ''stupid.''
* The original ComicBook/CaptainAmerica, Steve Rogers. SuperSoldier, tactical genius, [[HopeBringer inspirational leader]], unfailingly polite and incorruptibly idealistic.
* Franchise/{{Superman}} sometimes invokes this trope, often when an AntiHero claims that GoodIsOldFashioned....Except when [[Creator/FrankMiller certain writers]] depict him as an idiot on the assumption that anyone that powerful ''must'' be DumbMuscle and even then he solves problems with specific applications of that muscle.
* It's implied that The Gentleman from ''ComicBook/AstroCity'' is one of these. His goodness is never in question -- he's unfailingly polite, selfless, and idealistic, even in the midst of battle. On the other hand, his intelligence to date has been largely implied; for example, he's one of the few super-beings who avoided capture during a secret alien invasion.
* ComicBook/SpiderMan certainly has his flaws; he's hot-headed, neurotic and can occasionally descend into bouts of self-pity, yet he's still extremely loyal to his loved ones, lives by a very strict ThouShaltNotKill code and above all else, he values responsibility. He also happens to be a genius scientist.
* In ComicBook/{{Zatanna}}'s ongoing series she is confronted by Oscar Hampel, who claims that he was turned into a puppet because of a tragic series of events almost out of his control and that his violent actions were an isolated event. Zatanna accepts that her father, for all his wisdom and power, [[HumansAreFlawed was only human]] and might have overreacted by turning Oscar into a puppet. She gives Oscar the benefit of the doubt and agrees to help him become human again...after she runs him through a magic LieDetector, that is. After all, just because her father was not perfect does not mean he was wrong ''this'' time, and she is going to make sure before she takes any actions.

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* The dwarven noble protagonist in ''[[Fanfic/DragonAgeTheCrownOfThorns The Crown of Thorns]]'', a ''Dragon Age'' fanfiction, is an embodiment of this trope.
* The [[http://1d4chan.org/wiki/Reasonable_Marines Reasonable Marines]], a fanmade Space Marine Chapter for ''TabletopGame/Warhammer40000'', will attempt diplomacy first whenever possible, which makes then positively heretical in the shoot-first-ask-questions-never Imperium of Man. The fool that refuses their overtures gets to be on the receiving end of stealth tactics, combined arms and all-around {{Combat Pragmatis|t}}m.
* In ''Fanfic/ThreeSlytherinMarauders'' Arthur Weasley came up with a diversion which made ''Lucius Malfoy'' wonder when he'd become so clever.
* In ''Fanfic/{{Sight}}'' The Visored thought Ichigo was extremely naive when he decides to spare [[spoiler: Grimmjow after he escapes Aizen]] instead of killing him. While Ichigo didn't want to kill [[spoiler: Grimmjow]] in cold blood, he does have another reason. Ichigo is wise enough that [[spoiler: Grimmjow]] wouldn't be swayed into joining their side by appealing to his morality. He tells [[spoiler: Grimmjow]] that he doesn't care what [[spoiler: Grimmjow]] does as long as he stays on the sidelines, doesn't try to return to Aizen or attack Ichigo or any of his friends. Thus depriving Aizen of a potential warrior [[spoiler: that knows how to find the Visoreds' secret base]] and better impressing [[spoiler: Grimmjow.]] It works as [[spoiler: Grimmjow]] decides to help Ichigo with his Hollow powers than return to Aizen or remain on the sidelines.
* ''Fanfic/TheVerySecretDiary'': Tom Riddle looks down at Ginny, belittling her as a dumb little pawn. Ginny, however, ends up figuring out Tom's web of lies, and by combining willpower and the concern of her friends and family, ends up delaying his plans by several weeks, and is able to deduce his true origins.
* ''Fanfic/WishCarefully'': In which Harry Potter surrenders wizarding England to the Death Eaters, evacuates everyone else, and lets the consequences of their own purist, isolationist ideology and Voldemort's "leadership" [[RealityEnsues drive them to ruin]].

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/Cars2'', Mater's simple nature belies the fact that he's a genius at recognizing obscure car parts at a glance. [[spoiler:He later uses this to identify Sir Miles Axelrod as the mastermind behind the efforts to sabotage the World Grand Prix.]]
* In ''Disney/{{Zootopia}},'' [[WordOfSaintPaul Judy's voice actress]] specifically addresses the character this way: she's [[NaiveNewcomer new to the city]] and a cheerful idealist, but that doesn't mean that you should underestimate her. She does fall for [[CunningLikeAFox Nick]]'s hustle when they first meet, causing him to dismiss her as a "dumb bunny," but after that she's wise to his schemes and tricks him into giving her the information that she needs to blackmail him. By movie's end, the two are working together to [[OutGambitted Out-Gambit]] the villains.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* Abbe Coulmier from ''Film/{{Quills}}'' is a [[GoodShepherd compassionate priest]] who believes RousseauWasRight, and serves as a foil to the Marquis de Sade. While it initially seems like de Sade has the advantage, Coulmier turns out to be more than capable of zinging him right back, and punctures de Sade's pretensions to evil.
-->'''Coulmier:''' You're not the anti-Christ. You're just a malcontent who knows how to spell.
* Georgia Byrd from ''Film/LastHoliday'' might seem naïve, but she is a very good saleswoman and gives some solid advice to other characters. Despite all of Kragenís attempts to humiliate her, Georgia is usually one step ahead of him.
* While the most obvious example from the Franchise/MarvelCinematicUniverse is Film/{{Captain America|TheFirstAvenger}}, the best example is Agent Coulson of S.H.I.E.L.D., who's always quiet and polite even when he's [[Film/TheAvengers2012 pointing a BFG at an Asgardian demigod.]]
* Glinda the Good in ''Film/OzTheGreatAndPowerful'' almost immediately figures out that Oz is not a wizard. Still, she knows that people need to believe that he ''is'' the Wizard of the prophecy in order to win against the Wicked Witches. This is in sharp contrast to Theodora, who is completely taken in by Oz, who flirts with her just like any other gullible girl, to the point where she's planning a wedding after knowing him a few hours. She also completely fails to notice [[spoiler:her sister Evanora playing her, resulting in Evanora turning her into an AxCrazy Wicked Witch]].
* George Bailey in ''Film/ItsAWonderfulLife'' is an idealist, but is nobody's fool; cf. his rant at Potter in the board meeting after his father's death.
* ''Film/MrDeedsGoesToTown'': Everyone in the movie takes this kind, small town man who inherited millions from his long lost uncle as some yokel they can easily deceive. A great example was when a lawyer who represented one of his uncle's ex-wives tried to make a claim against the estate. While sympathetic to the wife at first, he realized he was being conned, and threw the man out of his house, to the shock of [[AmoralAttorney Mr. Cedar]] and [[KnightInSourArmor Mr. Cobb]].
* ''Film/TheHungerGames'': Peeta is kind, patient, and three steps ahead when it comes to manipulating the on-camera narrative.
* In the original ''Franchise/{{Ghostbusters}}'' duology, Ray is definitely TheHeart of the team--he seems genuinely excited to explore the supernatural, as opposed to [[TheStoic Egon]] (who's almost purely cerebral), [[DeadpanSnarker Peter]] (who's a grade-A cynic), and [[OnlySaneMan Winston]] (who's the most practical person in the group). He's also extremely polite and considerate, even trying ''diplomacy'' with a PhysicalGod in the [[Film/Ghostbusters1984 first film]]. But don't mistake his kind soul for a soft head--he's a certified genius in the fields of metallurgy, history (both ancient and contemporary), anthropology, and the paranormal in general. He's also just as good a shot with his proton pack as the other three, and Lord help you if you [[PapaWolf threaten a child on his watch]]. Ray's even able to turn his [[SillyRabbitCynicismIsForLosers genuine belief in the good of people]] into a weapon in the climax of the [[Film/GhostbustersII second movie]]--he determines that the only way to break through the shell of slime (which is powered by negative emotions) is by tapping into the "few sparks of sweet humanity" in New York, which inspires the 'busters to [[spoiler: mobilize the Statue of Liberty with positively-empowered slime, a plan that succeeds beautifully.]]

* ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'':
** Carrot Ironfoundersson greets everyone by name, is perpetually polite and cheerful, and selflessly volunteers to help anyone in need. But anyone who mistakes him for an easy mark ''quickly'' learns otherwise.
--->And that was Carrot at work. He could sound so innocent, so friendly, so... ''stupid,'' in a puppy-dog kind of way, and then he became this big block of steel and you walked right into it.
** While Sam Vimes is a textbook example of GoodIsNotNice, his wife Sybil is an example of this trope. She's always unflappably polite and kind-hearted (even to [[BileFascination Nobby Nobbs]]), but beneath her lighthearted exterior is a razor-sharp mind, as demonstrated when she negotiated Ankh-Morpork's fat trade with the Dwarf King in ''Discworld/TheFifthElephant''.
** And then there's Nanny Ogg, the CoolOldLady who's always up for a good drink, a good smoke, and a [[strike:good]] ribald song. Yet she's smart enough to keep ''[[NeverMessWithGranny Granny Weatherwax]]'' in check...
* In ''Literature/GoodOmens'', the ever-polite angel Aziraphale occasionally gets visits from the [[LegitimateBusinessmensSocialClub representatives of property developers]] who are [[ShameIfSomethingHappened very concerned about the possible risk of fire to his bookshop.]]. He listens to them cheerfully and politely sends them on their way, and ''they never return''...
* In ''Literature/TheHungerGames'', Peeta is kind and patient and [[spoiler: totally kills at least two people in the arenas]], besides being three steps ahead when it comes to manipulating the on-camera narrative.
* The ''Literature/FatherBrown'' series by Creator/GKChesterton uses this heavily with its titular character. In his first appearance, the GentlemanThief Flambeau is shocked that a quiet, unassuming priest can not only outwit him but knows more than him about criminal behaviour. Father Brown points out that of course priests know these things; people ''confess'' to them.
* None of the main cast of ''Literature/CodexAlera'' can be considered dumb, but Tavi in particular stands out. He's constantly derided for being overly idealistic and trying to make peace with nonhuman species who have been at war with Alera for centuries. However, he's a GuileHero with a talent for CrazyAwesome {{Batman Gambit}}s and understanding creatures that don't think like humans, so as often as not his idealism actually pays off, much to the surprise (and sometimes annoyance) of his detractors.
* Creator/JimButcher's other series, ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'', also uses this trope on the Knights of the Cross, Michael Carpenter in particular. Michael is a ChurchMilitant KnightInShiningArmor and devout Catholic, but he's also a perceptive person. If it looks like he's falling for a {{plan}}, it's because he believes it's the only honorable way to get Harry out of the latest mess and/or God will see him through it, ''never'' because he hasn't noticed the risk.
** Also because Harry has risked the same for him.
** When Harry [[spoiler:receives the shadow of a Fallen Angel]], he worries about telling Michael. When he finally does, Michael calmly tells him that he knew. Harry forgot that the Knights job is to help those who have evil within themselves redeem themselves.
* Literature/BrotherCadfael from the Creator/EllisPeters mystery novels is a very intelligent man, quite good at medicine, reading people and bringing the most unnoticeable clues together. He is also remarkably kind and compassionate. Hugh Beringar is also a good and honorable person -- and a MagnificentBastard on top of that.
* In Creator/TimothyZahn [[Literature/TheThrawnTrilogy novels]], Luke is written this way. While he may be one of the strongest Jedi, he is also able to outsmart his opponents when necessary.
* Wedge Antilles, in his [[StarWars film]] and early [[Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse EU]] appearances, was just an AcePilot, leader of Rogue Squadron, and loyal to his friends and cause. His [[ADayInTheLimelight day in the limelight]], the Literature/XWingSeries, showed some promising hints of interpersonal savvy, tactical insight, and further loyalty to principles rather than organization. This is turned UpToEleven by the time of his Creator/AaronAllston-written appearances in the ''Literature/NewJediOrder'' and ''Literature/LegacyOfTheForce''. He's adept at XanatosSpeedChess, an incredibly quick thinker, adept at cutting past what people are saying to what they ''mean'' and their underlying goals, [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking and a loving husband and father who is deeply principled and moral]]. Somehow, people keep [[UnderestimatingBadassery underestimating him]].
* In ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'', Frodo makes it very clear to Gollum that he is well aware that Gollum is trying to think of a way to betray the hobbits and take back the ring. Sam is surprised at this because he had assumed Frodo was far too good a person to be able to understand deception and treachery. Sam admits that he (and probably Gollum as well) "had confused kindness with blindness."

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* The Doctor on ''Series/DoctorWho'' frequently makes use of this to his own advantage. Although his kindness is almost always genuine, it frequently earns the scorn of various despots, tyrants and baddies who assume him to be simple-minded or naive.
* Benton Fraser from ''Series/DueSouth''. Honest, noble, impeccably polite at all times... and a lot more competent and intelligent than he appears. Incredibly reminiscent of [[Literature/{{Discworld}} Captain Carrot]], to the point that you think ''somebody'' must have been inspired by somebody else. Apparently not, though.
* ''Series/GameOfThrones'':
** Ned Stark's decisions are often dismissed as just being HonorBeforeReason, but there are often very good reasons for his choices. He doesn't back Renly's bid for the throne, but replacing one false king with another would ''certainly'' require winning a war and Renly is a bureaucrat with no combat experience. Sure enough, Renly does nothing but divide the forces against the Lannisters. He offers Cersei time to flee before he informs Robert of her infidelity, but as the lover of a notorious kingslayer and the daughter of one of the most powerful warlords in the realm, letting Robert bludgeon her and her children to death in a fit of rage isn't really an option either.
** Talisa, along with Catelyn and Edmure, insist that Lord Karstark should be imprisoned for the duration of the war as insurance against the Karstarks' loyalty. This despite having just seen the ''recently murdered corpses of the Lannister boys she tended to''.
* Dr. Molly Clock in ''Series/{{Scrubs}}''. Her cheery optimism refuses to yield even against the naked cynicism of Dr. Cox and Dr. Kelso, and allows her to triumph against them.
* Trance Gemini of ''Series/{{Andromeda}}''.
* ''Series/StargateAtlantis'': Rodney [=McKay=] was quite surprised to find that Col. Sheppard has a Mensa-worthy IQ.
* ''Series/{{Firefly}}'':
** In "Trash," Saffron assumes Mal is an idiot because he's being kind and compassionate to her. Then she walks headlong into his BatmanGambit when it turns out he expected her [[ChronicBackStabbingDisorder sudden but inevitable betrayal]], and Inara beat Saffron to the drop point.
** In "Ariel" Simon--to that point seen along with his sister as TheLoad by the rest of the crew--comes up with a plan to steal medical supplies from a hospital. It's a win-win for the crew; they profit from the medicine (which they can sell on poorly-supplied colonies) while Simon gets access to diagnostic equipment he needs to help his sister. He specifically targets an Alliance military hospital for the crew's raid because he knows it will be resupplied quickly, thus not jeopardizing patient safety. He even breaks his cover to attend to a patient who is in distress and being ignored by the regular staff, and manages to (briefly) win Jayne's respect in the process. [[spoiler: That still doesn't stop Jayne from selling him out, however.]]
* Carly in ''Series/ICarly'' sees the best in people, but if betrayed or oppressed, will come up with a scheme like having a massive in-school riot to get the good principal back.
* Occurs several times in ''Series/{{Survivor}}'' -- Natalie in ''Samoa'' successfully played Russell's scheming to her own benefit. Also "Fabio" in ''Nicaragua'', who had a "lovable goof" personality but was reasonably game-savvy and combined the two to get the win.
* ''Series/TheAmazingRace'':
** On Season 2, Tara & Wil and Chris & Alex constantly ragged on Blake for being an idiot, despite this, he made several brilliant strategic moves, including being the first team to beg for money, getting his bags on a flight when all the other teams had to check theirs, and getting preferred parking on a ferry, most of which were decried by the above teams as "cheating".
** Part of Boston Rob getting Uchenna & Joyce and Gretchen & Meredith on a faster flight in Season 7 (when Rob, in order to mess with their heads, mentioned a fictional earlier flight, which just turned out to exist) was him talking about how Uchenna & Joyce couldn't do anything for themselves.
* Eiji Hino from ''Series/KamenRiderOOO'' may seem like a carefree fool, however underneath his simple exterior lies a rather cunning mind.
* Emu Hojo of ''Series/KamenRiderExAid'' is kind [[AllLovingHero doctor]] who wants everyone to get along and be happy. He always tries to talk to people and appeal to their better traits, but if that doesn't work, he uses his understanding of [[TheSocialExpert people]] and knack for [[BatmanGambit manipulation]]. This attitude allows him to be an AllLovingHero in CrapsackWorld.
* ''Series/{{Merlin|2008}}'':
** Arthur may be the poster boy for "GenreBlind is not dumb". Even if he's convinced that [[DevilInPlainSight Agravaine]] is innocent, he will investigate nonetheless, and came close to arresting him at least twice. He's also a very competent tactician, as you'd expect from [[RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething the commander of an elite army]], and, in more recent episodes, started valuing Merlin's advice above all others (although he'd never admit it).
** Gwen as well. Compared to the other characters who frequently pass around the IdiotBall, Gwen shows plenty of intelligence. For example, she spies Morgause talking to Morgana in the city and immediately goes to Gaius about it, as well as trying to figure out what she's up to. And when she [[spoiler: becomes Queen]] and it's revealed that someone in Camelot betrayed them, she immediately puts two and two together remembering she had seen one of her handmaidens leaving the city late the previous night and is able to get the truth out of her almost at once, something Uther never really quite accomplished.

[[folder:Myths & Religion]]
* In Literature/TheBible Jesus Christ specifically commanded his followers to invoke this. "I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves." - Matthew 10:16

[[folder:Pro Wrestling]]
* With Wrestling/KevinSteen doing his best [[Film/SpaceBalls Dark Helmet]] impression on the entirety of Wrestling/RingOfHonor while Wrestling/JimmyJacobs was on a [[TheAtoner redemption quest]] with Steve Corino, this trope coming up was seemingly inevitable. Unfortunately for ROH, Jimmy Jacobs discovered that while good may not be dumb, it wasn't for him. {{Evil fe|els good}}lt better and sometimes, evil really does win!

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* The ''Book of Exalted Deeds'' supplement for ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' makes a point of saying, early on, that Good does not equal stupid. A Good character won't leave a village to be eaten by a dragon, but they're perfectly allowed to ask questions about its power, its minions, and where it's living -- they aren't obligated to charge in blind. The same book also notes that good characters don't have to be even be too trusting and take the information of aforementioned example at a face value -- all of it may be a villain's trap, after all.

[[folder:Video Games]]
%%The following example has been commented out for being a ZeroContextExample. Do not uncomment it without explaining it properly.
%%* Does not even begin to describe ''VideoGame/DisgaeaHourOfDarkness''[='=] Sereph Lamington, a ChessMaster grade example.
* Aribeth in ''VideoGame/NeverwinterNights'' is presented as good, nice, kind, politically savvy, capable, perceptive, and not above [[NakedPeopleAreFunny having a laugh at your expense]]. All in all a refreshing aversion of the traditional stoic goody-two-shoes paladin.
* VideoGame/MegaManX, a ReluctantWarrior who lives in an increasingly CrapsackWorld infested with TheVirus, capable of turning even his best friend against him. Often referred to as 'too trusting' in-universe and 'emo' outside of it because he doesn't like killing people. He's also an SealedGoodInACan SuperPrototype OneManArmy with ''lots'' of combat experience and what he can't handle his aforementioned [[VideoGame/MegaManZero best friend]] ''will.'' He also ends up ruling the world, basically because he's the only person that could manage it. There was talk of having him hit the DespairEventHorizon, [[KnightTemplar lose that compassion]] and become the BigBad of the [[VideoGame/MegaManZero sequel series]]. That would have been ''bad.''
* Garlot of ''VideoGame/BlazeUnion'' may not be very smart to begin with, but he has a very sensitive nature that allows him to accurately read and understand his rivals and enemies' motivations. As his adventures start to gain him more and more street cred, it's his overwhelmingly gentle and compassionate heart that manages to win the hearts of his entire country--including those very rivals and enemies, more often than not. We get to see in [[VideoGame/YggdraUnion the future]] just how much Bronquia [[HundredPercentAdorationRating really appreciates]] having a leader who's kind, just, and ''competent.''
* Duessel from ''VideoGame/FireEmblemTheSacredStones''.
* Ashara Zavros in ''VideoGame/StarWarsTheOldRepublic'' is the most blatantly Light Sided companion in the Sith Inquisitor's entourage, but she also possesses a sharp mind and displays a lot of critical thinking towards both Light and Dark Side archetypes. Contrary to what you'd expect from a Jedi (even a Fallen one), her [[RelationshipValues affection for you is only affected]] by ''strategic'' acts of kindness (ones that improve other's lives in long term), but not by being merely nice and compassionate to everyone. If you don't actively corrupt her to TheDarkSide, she eventually arrives at her own philosophy of the Force (not unlike [[VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic Darth Revan's]]) that combines the best aspects of both Sides of the Force and is guided by reason.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* Almost all of the good guys in ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'' fall under this trope, with the exception of [[QuirkyBard Elan]] -- who has his moments with his extreme GenreSavvy. Paladins even state outright ([[RunningGag several times]]) that they're "Good, not dumb." [[LawfulStupid Miko]] is an inversion; while she is an intellgient and powerful paladin, her very warped and self-centered view of the world causes her to make increasingly bad decisions.
* Arthur in ''Webcomic/ArthurKingOfTimeAndSpace''. His enemies often assume that because he's nice, unassuming, and prepared to give the benefit of the doubt if possible, he can't be dangerous. Many of them are dead now, and the remaining ones [[http://www.arthurkingoftimeandspace.com/2256.htm still haven't learnt]].
* ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'': Everyone thinks that just because Gilgamesh Wulfenbach never built a DeathRay and tries to be civilized and fair, they can push him around and act like he's nothing. When [[BerserkButton he's finally pushed over the edge]], he shows the entire world that yes, he ''does'' know how to build a DeathRay, and yes, he's perfectly capable of kicking the crap out of Europa to protect his father and [[SheIsNotMyGirlfriend not-girlfriend]].
-->'''Castle Heterodyne:''' [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything Wulfenbach sparks are known for their oversized machinery, you know.]] ''[Agatha blushes]''
:: When he does flip out and [[LampshadeHanging brings this up]], he scares some very hard to scare people, while delivering an [[CurbstompBattle incredible beatdown]] to the oversized war criminal sent to retrieve him. And at the end[=:=]
-->'''Gil:''' Well, you '''know what'''? I can '''do''' crazy. I '''really can'''. And it looks like I'm going to '''have''' to. Agatha is in danger. This '''whole town''' is in danger. If I'm going to be able to help her '''at all''', I'm going to have to give up all this '''"being reasonable"''' garbage and show you '''idiots''' what kind of madboy you're '''''really dealing with!''''' ''[Smashes Vole apparently through a wall, {{beat}}, sudden wide eyes]'' ...oh. Oh, ''no.'' This must be [[KnightTemplar how my]] '''[[KnightTemplar father]]''' [[KnightTemplar feels]] - '''''all the time!'''''

[[folder:Web Original]]
* In a world as [[GreyAndGrayMorality grey]] as ''Roleplay/{{AJCO}}'' most characters tend to sneer at the more idealistic members of their society such as [[LawfulGood Egg]] and [[NeutralGood Kaja]]. However, Kaja is a high-level angel with centuries of experience under her belt and while Egg isn't the ''most'' perceptive character on the server, she is a ''very'' close second to Telepher and the Auditor. And they have as much as thirty years of practice on her!
* ''WebAnimation/{{Dreamscape}}'': Dylan's lack of powers, NiceGuy attitude, and harmless looks lead to him being demeaned by his adversaries, but there is more to him than meets the eye...

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* In the ''WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague'' episode "Flash and Substance"n Orion asks why Central City would honor a buffoon like the Flash, "who makes bad jokes, who concerns with pitiful men like the Trickster." But the Flash is anything but dumb -- he's able to handle the Trickster without throwing a single punch. In fact, he actually convinces the Trickster to happily turn himself in to the police. He also defeated the InsufferableGenius Grodd in one episode by outsmarting him, leading his teammate Franchise/GreenLantern to remark "Well, maybe you aren't an idiot." (Probably being at least partially sarcastic.) You can tell that even Batman is almost envious of his ability to quietly shut down a super-foe without violence, something he cannot imagine being able to do in Gotham... or anywhere else, for that matter. It does help that the Rogues (in the animations) are {{Punch Clock Villain}}s rather than crazies Batman has to deal with. The Comics are another story:
-->'''Flash:''' Do you think the Rogues here are simple? Do you think just because they aren't mentally screwed to the hilt that I have an easy time? Your guys are different, Bruce. They work on a completely cerebral level. They leave clues. They like to kill. My guys? They're organized.
* ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice'':
** Kid Flash (Wally West) is no twit either, he may act like an immature and quirky teen, but he's a real expert in physics, biology, and geology.
** We also see that while Robin is usually snarky and fairly goofy, he can be a Batman style ruthless tactician. He doesn't like it very much, though.
** M'gann M'orzz AKA Miss Martian, kind, caring, loving, [[spoiler:unrepentant mind-raper.]]
** Impulse also counts, he's a happy go lucky motor mouth,[[spoiler:who built his own time machine to go back to the past, to stop his BadFuture form happening.]]
* ''WesternAnimation/SupermanTheAnimatedSeries'': Superman gets to show and/or prove this a lot. Sometimes he's surprised by something he's never seen before, especially in the early episodes, when he was fresh off the farm and just beginning his heroic career. But if you try the same trick on him more than once, you'll find that he's figured out ''exactly'' what your deal is and how to stop you. Compare how befuddled he was by [[OutsideContextProblem Mxyzptlk]] during their first encounter with how he almost effortlessly owns the extradimensional imp every time after that.
* Ned Flanders from ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'', at least in [[{{Flanderization}} the early seasons]]. He's smart enough to outsmart Homer, though that's not saying much.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPandaLegendsOfAwesomeness'' episode "Bosom Enemies", Po bends over backwards trying to let Taotie redeem himself, only to have him throw it away at being called an "assistant"n and attack the panda and his friends. However, Taotie seems to have turned again and helps Po stop his machine and for a second it seems that Po has forgiven him. However, it turns out that even Po is not that naive and this treacherous villain is next shown in Chorh-Gom Prison.
* ''WesternAnimation/BeastWars'':
** Optimus Primal, quite possibly the intellectual equal of MagnificentBastard Megatron, and more than once able to let the bad guys play right into his hands. Also a great guy in general, and a friend to all the Maximals under his command. Would rather not have to fight, but is very good at it.
** And then there's Rattrap, who generally wins his fights by a combination of this and GoodIsNotNice.
** Rhinox. It's telling that when he was turned evil by Megatron, Optimus did not order a rescue attempt. Rather, he figured that if there was anyone on his own team who would be capable of outsmarting him in a coup, it would be Rhinox and Megatron might not have realized how cunning his newest addition to the team truly was.
* Ben Tennyson was this during ''WesternAnimation/Ben10AlienForce'' and some episodes of ''WesternAnimation/Ben10UltimateAlien''. In ''WesternAnimation/Ben10Omniverse'', [[TookALevelInDumbass on the other hand]]...

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Studies have shown that people who're more trusting are often ''more'' capable of telling when others are lying. For more information, see [[Analysis/GoodIsNotDumb the analysis page]].
* Another study has shown that those who're more concerned with justice tend to think more logically.
* In the early years of UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, UsefulNotes/MahatmaGandhi advocated passive resistance against the Nazi war machine, just as he had successfully used against British rule in India. However, when the horrific scope of Nazi Germany's campaign against Europe and its own Jewish population became evident, Gandhi acknowledged that, even if nonviolence could possibly work against the Nazis, it would suffer many, many bloody defeats along the way. Gandhi was ''not'' naive, and understood quite well that his resistance against the British succeeded because, when it came down to it, they were honorable enough to [[WouldNotShootACivilian not resort to genocide]]. The Nazis, meanwhile, had no such compunction.
* Pierre Terrail, seigneur de Bayard, has been held up for centuries as the [[KnightInShiningArmor exemplar of chivalric virtue]], loyal, honorable, pious, noble and kind, admired by friend and foe alike, his name a byword for heroism and goodness. He was also one of the most effective military commanders of his day, in a large part because of his extremely practical approach to war -- he demanded discipline and professionalism from both his cavalry and infantry (who other French commanders of the age disdained as a rabble), and made extensive use of espionage and reconnaissance to maintain awareness of his enemies' movements. In other words, he was the complete opposite of the stereotype of the idiot aristocrat whose only tactic is "charge".