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->''"There's nothing to hate about Marianne. She's little and friendly and she will lend you anything."''
-->-- '''Jenny,''' ''Literature/NothingsFairInFifthGrade''

The Nice Guy (or Girl) [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin is nice]]. Maybe not a [[AllLovingHero saint]], but definitely not [[Main/SlidingScaleOfAntagonistVileness unpleasant]], [[{{Jerkass}} obnoxious]] or an [[DarkerAndEdgier edgy]] {{rebel|liousSpirit}}. They're friendly, psychologically well-balanced, [[TrueNeutral morally average]] ([[NeutralGood if not better]]) and in short, someone anyone would like to be around and [[TheConfidant have as a friend]], which is often what they are to the hero and/or his extended cast. He won't engage in [[{{Jerkass}} jerk-like behavior]], but probably responds in kind to VitriolicBestBuds.

Want to know what writers think of that? '''"Boring!"''' This is because they can be conflict null zones romantically and dramatically because of a perceived [[FlatCharacter (or real)]] lack of [[RoundedCharacter depth.]] Along with the HappilyMarried couple, the Nice Guy is among fiction's "favorite" {{Friendly Target}}s. They'll die senselessly to [[HeroicResolve motivate]] their hero buddy, lose the girl to the more dynamic but unstable DoggedNiceGuy or just in general [[ButtMonkey go through constant torment from the world around them]].

On the other hand, if done right, it can demonstrate why a guy has beautiful women attached to him: he really is a remarkably wonderful and compassionate person. The Nice Guy can be engaging, likable or TheProtagonist; all it takes is giving them a personality outside of "nice" such as: a [[GentlemanAndAScholar scholarly refinement]], [[KnightInShiningArmor a chivalric attitude]], some engaging relationships, and a pinch of HiddenDepths. Having the right actor with the thespian skill to take those character qualities and wield them with charm and sincerity can help, which is how master actors like Creator/ChristopherReeve and Creator/ChrisEvans took archetypal {{Superhero}} paragons of pure goodness who superficially seemed bland and colorless, Film/{{Superman}} and [[Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger Captain America]] respectively, and made them compelling characters audiences loved.

Nor does it mean [[GoodIsNotSoft being nice means they're not tough]], or an IronWoobie. If [[BadassBookworm combat intellect]] or combat ability are involved, it's akin to ObfuscatingStupidity or CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass because you naturally ''expect'' the {{dark|AndTroubledPast}}, [[HurtingHero tormented]] [[IWorkAlone loner]] to be rough and tough, and the nice guy to be a NonActionGuy. So when it comes time for [[IAmNotLeftHanded "No more Mr. Nice Guy"]], [[BewareTheNiceOnes heads roll]]. On the other hand, with the AllOfTheOtherReindeer trope in play, the nice fellow can be a redeeming factor as a person whom the beleaguered hero realizes is on his side and lets him know [[YouAreNotAlone he's not alone]]. Unless the nice guy is the beleaguered hero, then he's screwed.

Often, authors go the abbreviated route and give them a DarkAndTroubledPast triggered by a BerserkButton. Either way, you can expect their niceness to be ''[[BrokenHero in spite]]'' of whatever {{tragedy}} or drama is in their lives; kind of an equal and opposite reaction to it. If done too suddenly, it implies a level of secrecy and acting that a StepfordSmiler would be jealous of. When done well, a more troubled character will [[DontYouDarePityMe rebuff their advice or friendship]] with "What do you know? [[MiseryPoker You've never had X happen to you!]]" to his "[[FormerTeenRebel I did]]", thus revealing healed-over scars.

Furthermore, the Nice Guy trope can overlap with InnocentlyInsensitive, in which case the character can be just as insufferable at times as the JerkWithAHeartOfGold or even the {{Jerkass}}, but not at all mean-spirited like them. However, if the setting is comedic with many [[TheChewToy Chew Toys]] around, you can't always count on them to be the [[ComedicSociopathy sympathetic]] [[ProtagonistCenteredMorality ones]] (though this tends to only happen in anime and manga).

Another trait Nice Guys often exhibit is being EasilyImpressed. Most people like to be complimented or appreciated so writers will often give the Nice Guy low standards to give a mediocre or upset character a boost in morale. Unfortunately, doing this will often make them [[FearlessFool incredibly reckless]] or [[SmallNameBigEgo inflate their ego a bit too much.]]

If the Nice Guy has a rougher male as his {{Foil}}, they're a NobleMaleRoguishMale or SensitiveGuyAndManlyMan duo.

Occasionally, however, the treatment goes the other way around: Perhaps in a world set upon BlackAndGreyMorality, and GrayAndGreyMorality, this Nice Guy actually stands out because he IS a Nice Guy, he doesn't have the excuse to be cynical or mean, nor does he need to have a tragic backstory. He's that nice, friendly and helpful... that he eventually becomes a [[EnsembleDarkhorse fan-favorite]] due to how much he stands out amongst the more cynical cast members, a refreshing breeze to say.

If he ''does'' get the girl, it's SingleWomanSeeksGoodMan. Usually, the result of UpbringingMakesTheHero. [[BewareTheNiceOnes Though watch out]] if you've pressed his BerserkButton. Exact oppositions of this trope are: {{Jerkass}}, LackOfEmpathy, JerkWithAHeartOfJerk and the CompleteMonster (extreme opposition). If the villain is a Nice Guy in spite of his evil deeds, then he qualifies as AffablyEvil.

Fortunately, this one trope ''does'' have many TruthInTelevision examples. So many, in fact, that there's no need in listing them here, thanks in advance.

'''Note:''' This trope is referring to ''genuinely'' nice guys. If you're looking for the Internet definition of "Nice Guy," that's at WantsAPrizeForBasicDecency and EntitledToHaveYou.


!!Example subpages:

* NiceGuy/AnimeAndManga
* NiceGuy/ComicBooks
* NiceGuy/FanWorks
* NiceGuy/{{Film}}
* NiceGuy/{{Literature}}
* NiceGuy/LiveActionTV
* NiceGuy/{{Other}}
* NiceGuy/VideoGames
* NiceGuy/VisualNovels
* NiceGuy/WebComics
* NiceGuy/WebOriginal
* NiceGuy/WesternAnimation


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