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->'''Helmet:''' Did you see anything? \\
'''Sandurz:''' No, sir! I didn't see you playing with your dolls again!
-->-- ''Film/{{Spaceballs}}''
%% One quote per page is sufficient; put the rest of them on the Quotes tab.

[[DescribeTopicHere Certainly no one is describing Suspiciously Specific Denial here, so that people will understand what the trope is about.]] [[SelfDemonstratingArticle And this sure isn't an opening gag to preface it.]] [[OverlyLongGag And this surely isn't an unnecessary prolongation of the gag to make it, supposedly, funnier]].

A FalseReassurance works because the speaker is being vague and non-specific enough to pull the wool over someone's eyes. A Suspiciously Specific Denial, on the other hand, fails because the speaker is SayingTooMuch. This may be unintentional, such as when the speaker is panicked, is a BadLiar, or perhaps just a little stupid. Often used to establish that you're MostDefinitelyNotAVillain.

Sometimes, this is used [[InvokedTrope more deliberately]], such as when the speaker is [[CouldSayItBut trying to give out information that they shouldn't but doesn't want to be too obvious about it]] (OrSoIHeard may follow). A {{Trickster}} type may also use it as the misdirecting component of a BatmanGambit, an InfractionDistraction, or KansasCityShuffle; by making an oddly specific denial that is actually ''true'', the mark may be led to believe that the denial is false. (For example: the mark is told that there ''aren't'' [[Discworld/InterestingTimes 2,300,009 invisible vampire ghosts]] -- so the mark believes there ''are'', when in fact there are ''no'' invisible vampire ghosts at all.) In rare cases, the speaker may be telling the truth and have no intent to deceive, but it just [[ThatCameOutWrong comes out wrong]].

Oddly, it can happen in two opposite ways: the specific denial ("I won't kill you using a poisoned stiletto!") was a lie (he does, and the fact that the question and/or answer was so specific means that ''some''one already had the answer in mind), or the specific denial was technically true, but it [[ExactWords left so many doors open that it was suspect anyway]] (he kills the other guy with a ''non''-poisoned stiletto, or a gun). Either way, the result is the same - when someone is more specific than they need to be, it's a [[RevealingCoverup good sign something's wrong]]. Bonus suspicion points if the statement was made apropos of nothing.

This is a favored tactic of a {{Tsundere}} who got caught being dere -- in fact MemeticMutation has made this the motto of the {{Tsundere}} ("Stupid [love interest]! I-it's not like I'm [doing something affectionate] because I like you or anything!")

It's also related to ComplimentFishing, where someone will make a suspiciously specific SelfDeprecation in the hopes that other people will spot the denial and contradict them.

When the speaker is assumed to be telling the truth, a listener might suspect this if the denial was expected to be more general.

When TheMafia uses it, it's the LegitimateBusinessmensSocialClub. If you insist that you'd NEVER make a Suspiciously Specific Denial (while doing so), then it's IllNeverTellYouWhatImTellingYou. This is not comparable to BadLiar; a character who invokes this trope could certainly be a bad liar, but when used alone it's not indicative of BadLiar.

Characters who are LawfulStupid may take the statement at face value.

This is frequently seen on {{Police Procedural}}s when someone under a confidentiality requirement (lawyers and doctors, mostly) make a very specific inclusion or omission in an answer to the investigators that provides a clue where they should be looking.

It is also a device in mysteries. Someone makes a statement or denial [[INeverSaidItWasPoison including information that they could only know if they were the perp.]] "Well, I didn't shoot him!" "No one ever mentioned how he was killed." That may also be related to YouJustToldMe. This is the reason why it is also Truth in Television, especially why lawyers frequently advise not to make any reply to any allegation.

'''See also:''' CouldSayItBut.

Super Trope of HaveIMentionedIAmSexuallyActiveToday and PeoplesRepublicOfTyranny.

Compare OverlyNarrowSuperlative, NightmareFuelStationAttendant, SayingTooMuch, INeverSaidItWasPoison, OrSoIHeard, and ItsForABook.

Contrast FalseReassurance, BlatantLies, and ImplausibleDeniability.

Compare/contrast with HesitationEqualsDishonesty.

Often accompanies MockSurpriseReaction.

!!These are certainly not examples:

* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/{{Advertising}}
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/AnimeAndManga
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/ComicBooks
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/ComicStrips
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/FanWorks
* [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/AnimatedFilms Films Animation]]
* [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/LiveActionFilms Films Live-Action]]
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/{{Literature}}
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/LiveActionTV
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/{{Music}}
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/PuppetShows
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/{{Radio}}
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/TabletopGames
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/{{Theatre}}
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/VideoGames
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/{{Webcomics}}
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/WebAnimation
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/WebOriginal
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/WesternAnimation
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial/RealLife



[[folder:Card Games]]
* The card game ''TabletopGame/NinjaBurger'' includes the "Not a Ninja" T-Shirt which is ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin and gives a bonus to the disguise skill.
* ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'': House Dimir does not exist. Of course the Guildpact relies on ten guilds of all possible mana combinations, but the blue black one is just a myth. That tenth symbol on the wall showing all the guilds? Artist's license. Duskmantle, House of Secrets? Never built, don't know what you're talking about. Those mysterious spirits that the Boros legion fought last week? I don't remember that, and you don't either. [[spoiler:Leading to TheUnmasquedWorld when [[OurVampiresAreDifferent Szadek]] makes a banquet out of [[CosmicKeystone Selesnya]].]]

[[folder:Oral Tradition]]
* This is not the origin of the non-Chinese proverb "no three-hundred taels of silver beneath this ground":
-->Some guy digs a hole behind his house and put all his life's savings in it. Not feeling particularly secure, he scribbles a message on the wall: "''No three-hundred taels of silver beneath this ground''". His neighbor Wang gets the message, harvests the ground -- and then wrote: "''This is not stolen by your neighbor Wang''".
* There is a Latin phrase that says "Excusatio non petita, accusatio manifesta". Which means "explanation non asked, guilt exposed".

[[folder:Print Media]]
* Issue 278 of ''Magazine/DoctorWhoAdventures'' is A5 size, rather than the usual A4. The Letter From The Doctor explains that this is totally intentional and nothing to do with him mucking about with the [[Recap/DoctorWhoS32E8LetsKillHitler Teselecta]]'s miniturisation ray. And on a totally unrelated note, he himself appears to be shrunk, so send help and a tiny fez.
[[ImplausibleDeniability This isn't a Tropes page, we swear.]]
[[BlatantLies Not at all.]]
[[BadLiar Nope.]]
[[RunningGag No way.]]
[[OverlyLongGag No how.]]
[[{{Beat}} ...]]
'''[[TheStinger OH DEAR GOD,]] [[DespairEventHorizon WHO DO WE THINK WE'RE KIDDING?!]]'''