If something is PlayedForDrama, it is being used with the intention to be serious. Sometimes, a [[ComedyTropes comedic trope]] is played completely serious (for example, a ThreeIsCompany setup leads to tragedy), or maybe a drama-neutral trope is milked for all the drama it can provide. Can be used in a {{deconstruction}} of a particular trope.

Contrast PlayedForLaughs; sometimes, the [[CanonicalListOfSubtleTropeDistinctions only difference]] between one trope and another is that one is played for laughs, while the other is played for drama.