->''"Uptown, just another Joe\\
Downtown, where you gonna go?"''
-->--'''''Golden Boy''''', "Night Song" (1964)

A character who is mostly a blank slate stand in for the audience, made to be empathetic to all. They won't be exceptional; in fact, they will be decidedly average. If you try to pin down the character traits of any one of them, you'll probably come up blank. They are usually popular by association, in that they tend to interact and be friends with a large group of more interesting supporting characters.

The Everyman has no distinct personality, except what is defined by others' interactions with them. One gets the distinct feeling that if people weren't trying to kill them / [[ItBeganWithATwistOfFate wacky circumstances didn't happen to them]] / the fate of the world didn't fall into their laps / their wacky neighbors weren't around, The Everyman would be the most boring person in the world.

If a leader, then they're a StandardizedLeader. The videogame version of this is a HeroicMime in terms of plot, JackOfAllStats in terms of ability, and a FeaturelessProtagonist when taken to its extreme.

In {{Dom Com}}s, the father is often an everyman, struggling just to maintain sanity in his family and keep it together through the {{zany scheme}}s set up by the wife or kids.

Not every character created with the intention of being The Everyman stays that way. If the writers think ViewersAreMorons, then this character can quickly devolve into a LoserArchetype, with the idea that this is how the average person acts. At this point, the character's message sort of devolves into telling viewers "ThisLoserIsYou".

Despite the name, everymen aren't AlwaysMale but they usually are because MostWritersAreMale.

Often an AudienceSurrogate. If so, you may expect them to be:

* A default character for the audience to latch on to, as a sufficient blank slate that the audience will know we are "expected" to identify with said character; [[ArrangedMarriage and love will come later]]. This can be useful in an unfamiliar setting; compare TheWatson. As the story develops, this type of Everyman may devolve into an inoffensive {{Foil}} or SupportingProtagonist. The audience may find them harmlessly uninteresting, and latch onto the action hero, EnsembleDarkHorse, [[DracoInLeatherPants or villain]] instead.
* An empty vessel for the audience's hopes, dreams and aspirations. (Not to be confused with an EscapistCharacter who already possesses what the audience craves.) These are the sort of Everyman characters where each audience member is willing to imagine ''themselves'' in the character's shoes, with no apparent contradiction. This may lead to some complication (or [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming crowning moment]]) when the author forces them to undergo [[CharacterDevelopment some course of action]] that the audience, having already invested in the character, would not (at first) imagine themselves taking.

See also NormalPeople and TheGenericGuy. RidiculouslyAverageGuy is when this is taken to an extreme. Drop the Everyman into a fantasy setting and have him still act like everything is hunky-dory and you get the UnfazedEveryman. A character who ''starts out'' like this but later becomes a hero (or a villain) better fits the UnlikelyHero or FromNobodyToNightmare Tropes.

No relation to [[Franchise/TheSlenderManMythos the popular Slender Man series]] ''[[WebVideo/EverymanHYBRID EverymanHYBRID.]]''

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!!Examples:

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[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* ''CodeGeass'': Kaname Ougi is the very example of what an Everyman would most likely do when things go horrendously wrong. Diethard points out how this makes Ougi important to the Black Knights because they can't live on "stars alone" and need an average person for the common people to relate with.
* Everyman leads occur more than you'd think in romantic[=/=]{{ecchi}} anime and/or arcs, letting the audience project themselves upon him. In {{hentai}}, they're legion.
** Sasahara from ''{{Genshiken}}'' is a general {{otaku}} who falls for [[spoiler:Ogiue]].
** His (unintentional?) {{expy}} Kosuda in ''BGataHKei'' is an ordinary schoolboy trying to make sense of [[LovableSexManiac Yamada's]] WANT/DO NOT WANT/WANT/DO NOT WANT behaviour.
* The Producer in the anime version of ''[[Anime/TheIdolmaster THE iDOLM@STER]]''. Even his description is nondescript.
* Minako from ''Anime/SailorMoon'' in the first series, prior to [[TookALevelInDumbass taking a level in dumbass]]. She was more of "the everygirl" compared to [[TheDitz Usagi]], [[TheSmartGuy Ami]], [[HotBlooded Rei]], and [[HugeSchoolGirl Makato]]. She had a few odd character quirks like messing up her proverbs but it wasn't until Sailor Moon S when she was [[{{Flanderization}} flanderized]] into being a dumb blonde and The CloudCuckooLander.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comicbooks]]
%%* Fone Bone from ''{{Bone}}''.
%%* {{Tintin}}
* [[SpiderMan Peter Parker/Spider-Man]] is often held up as the epitome of this within superhero comics, and possibly the key to the franchise success. Admittedly, he's not a strict example, as he's consistently portrayed as responsible, hardworking, highly intelligent, and when the going gets tough, [[YouFightLikeACow a wiseass]]. However, compare him to his contemporaries: he's the average working stiff where the others include [[Franchise/FantasticFour super-scientists]], [[IronMan a millionaire playboy]], [[CaptainAmerica an idolized war hero]], and [[TheMightyThor a god]]. Some writers (JoeQuesada especially) tend to turn this into ThisLoserIsYou. He fills the role so perfectly, many other attempts to make an Everyman superhero wind up compared to him.
* CaptainAmerica, in his Steve Rogers not-so SecretIdentity anyway. Interestingly, he was originally a washed-up art student, to deliberately draw parallels to UsefulNotes/AdolfHitler.
%%* Billy Batson, [[ComicBook/{{Shazam}} Captain Marvel]]'s secret identity.
%%* Kyle Rayner in ''GreenLantern''.
%%* Nite Owl II/Dan Dreiberg of ''{{Watchmen}}'' could be a Practical Example. In Addition of ThisLoserisyou.
* The original Freedom Fighters seemed to have evolved this way in ''ComicBook/SonicTheHedgehog'', likely to act as foils to Sonic and the more abrasive additions from the games. A lot of their shortcomings are rather subdued or down more to circumstance than having prominant personality defects, and while a lot have unique abilities, they are played in a [[BadassNormal more realistic manner]] than their super powered comrades. This is less prominant in earlier issues and the [[WesternAnimation/SonicSatam coinciding TV show]], where they have goofier, more prominant personality defects, but they still had visible shades of this at times.
* [[ComicBook/WhatEverHappenedToTheManOfTomorrow Jordan Elliot.]]
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[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* Nearly every character played by Ben Stiller.
%%* Gabe and Tucker from ''Film/{{Cliffhanger}}''
* Wikus, the "protagonist" of ''Film/{{District 9}}'' is a deconstruction of this trope. Whether he's a PunchClockVillain, IdiotHero, or JerkassWoobie is entirely up to interpretation. Ultimately, he reacts to extreme circumstances (that demand heroism) just as you'd expect an average nerdy professional bureaucrat thrust into a dangerous and unpredictable environment: [[TruthInTelevision poorly]].
* Joe, the main character of ''Film/{{Idiocracy}}'' is described as the most average man in existence. The speaker then shows a series of graphs, all of which have Joe at the exact middle of the bell curve, a trend which he describes as "remarkable." It is unclear if he sees the irony.
* Sergeant [[MeaningfulName Eversmann]] from ''Film/BlackHawkDown''. He lacks many of the various character-building details that less important characters get, is somewhat more thoughtful about the war than many of his comrades, and has never been in combat before. He is primarily an AudienceSurrogate who interacts with [[OneDegreeOfSeparation most of the other important characters in the film.]]
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[[folder:Literature]]
* Arthur Dent in ''Franchise/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy''; he considers himself more differed-''from'' than differing.
%%* Dante (the character, not the poet) in ''Literature/TheDivineComedy''.
%%* Nearly all FairyTale heroes and heroines (e.g., Literature/{{Cinderella}} and Literature/{{Aladdin}}).
%%* The hero of ''Literature/APilgrimsProgress'' is actually named 'Everyman'; ''Christian'' Everyman.
* ''Literature/OfMiceAndMen'' has George, largely made distinctive by his relation to Lenny.
* Dr. Watson fills this role in the ''SherlockHolmes'' stories. He does have certain distinct personality traits, such as his eye for attractive women ([[SarcasmMode how unusual]]), but in many other ways he reflects the typical Victorian citizen who read Arthur Conan Doyle's stories when they were first published, bridging the gap between the readers and the otherwise eccentric Holmes.
* Arguably Literature/RobinsonCrusoe. An average Englishman from late 17th century stranded on inhabitated island. He got no particular set of skills nor character traits (at least for his epoche), yet is able to hold on his own for two decades. Not to mention his adventures before he got ship-wrecked.
* The title character of ''Literature/AliceInWonderland'' is a fairly unremarkable Victorian child, in order to better contrast with the insanity of Wonderland
%%* Ralph from ''Literature/LordOfTheFlies''
%%* Bella Swan in ''Literature/{{Twilight}}''.
* Ron Weasley in the ''Literature/HarryPotter'' series is an odd example of this: While Harry is the viewpoint character discovering the magical world, he hardly qualifies as ordinary, whereas Ron is ordinary for the magical world and would be unremarkable if he wasn't Harry's best friend.
* Winston Smith in ''Literature/NineteenEightyFour'', whose sympathetic human characterization is said by [[spoiler:O'Brien]] to be "the last man."
%%* Jake from ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'' starts out this way.
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[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Many of the Doctor's companions from ''Series/DoctorWho''.
** Mickey Smith and Rory Williams are both very deliberately ordinary people whose girlfriends become the Doctor's companions and end up crushing on him. A great deal is made of the contrast between the ordinary, happy life they could offer, and the adventurous, extraordinary one the Doctor provides. In Mickey's case, [[spoiler: he is somewhat unceremoniously dumped in favour of the Doctor]], with Rory, the episode "Amy's Choice" makes it clear that, despite her zigzagging feelings for both of them, if it came down to a choice between the two [[spoiler: she'd choose an ordinary life with Rory.]]
%%* Earl Sinclair in ''{{Dinosaurs}}''.
%%* [[TheMuppets Kermit the Frog.]]
%%* LizzieMcGuire
* Joe Miller of TheLostRoom.
* [[TheBigBangTheory Leonard Hofstadter]] is the HollywoodNerd variation.
** Penny is more of a straight example, being an ordinary GirlNextDoor who's well-rounded in her knowledge and hobbies.
%%* Two words: Godai Yuusuke of KamenRiderKuuga.
* [[TheDanza Jerry]] {{Seinfeld}} has strikingly average interests such as cereal, sneakers, and {{Superman}} comics, but [[{{Flanderization}} ends up]] a [[SubvertedTrope subversion]], becoming one of the most {{Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist}}s of all time.
* Kevin Arnold from TheWonderYears is supposed to represent the life of an average teenage boy growing up in the 1960's.
%%* [[BoyMeetsWorld Cory Matthews.]]
* Before [[TookALevelInJerkass Taking a level in jerkass,]] Will Schuester from {{Glee}} was this.
* Chris Rock from ''EverybodyHatesChris'' is an average boy from the 1980's.
* Earl Sinclair from ''{{Dinosaurs}}'' is an every-dinosaur.
* Denzil from ''Series/OnlyFoolsAndHorses''.
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[[folder:Newspaper Comics]]
%%* ComicStrip/{{Dilbert}}
* Ernie from ''Piranha Club'' started as something of a loser but through reverse {{Flanderization}}, he eventually become one.
* Goat in ''PearlsBeforeSwine.'' He's the only character who reacts to (or even ''notices'') the weirdness that surrounds them in the same way the audience would.
* [[{{Peanuts}} Charlie Brown.]] You can't help but identify with him. [[WordOfGod Charles Shultz]] relates a letter he got from a fan, who said "my son came home from school one day with a sad frown, slammed his bookbag to the floor, and said, 'Mom, I feel just like Charlie Brown.' He didn't have to say another word. I knew exactly how he felt."
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[[folder:Theater]]
* The TropeNamer is a late 15th century English morality play called [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Everyman_%28play%29 Everyman]].
* The traditional Creator/CirqueDuSoleil protagonist (if the show has one) is usually a version of this: see ''Quidam'', ''Theatre/{{O}}'', ''Theatre/LaNouba'', ''Theatre/{{Corteo}}'', ''KOOZA'', even the ''Theatre/{{Delirium}}'' concert tour. Often they are pulled into the plot by a {{Trickster}}. In ''"O"'', it's set up that he [[FromBeyondTheFourthWall appears to be an audience member]].
** The headless titular character in ''Quidam'' is ''literally'' an Everyman (the word 'Quidam' means 'nameless passerby', and the soundtrack album version of the title song has the male singer explicitly state "I'm everyman"), but the main character Zoe is ''also'' a, less literal, Everygirl. With an Everyfamily made up of an Everyman and an Everywoman. It... gets a little bit confusing.
* The play ''Everyman'' is about an {{Everyman}} going on an adventure to {{Death}}.
* Mark from ''{{Rent}}''. Via SupportingProtagonist and YouHaveToHaveJews.
* OlderThanPrint: These were often the protagonists of medieval everyman plays.
* Stella from AStreetcarNamedDesire is an everywoman.
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[[folder:Videogames]]
* Claude of ''VideoGame/StarOceanTheSecondStory'', who is even easier to identify with because the game's Private Action system allows you to choose many actions that show what kind of a person he is.
* Main characters of Creator/{{Nintendo}} games are often this, usually with HeroicMime for good measure:
** [[Franchise/SuperMarioBros Mario]]. Keeping his characterization minimal is something the producers have done intentionally, so he can be put in to any given situation.
** [[Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda Link]]. [[MeaningfulName This is the reason why he is named that]].
** [[Videogame/EarthBound Ness]]
** [[{{Pikmin}} Captain Olimar]]
** Videogame/{{Chibi-Robo}}
** [[Videogame/GameAndWatch Mr. Game and Watch]] is probably Nintendo's first everyman.
* Jimmy Hopkins of ''VideoGame/{{Bully}}'' was intended to be this, says the WordOfGod. Even though he does have [[MadeOfIron incredible strength,]] he is easily relatable.
* In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXII'', Basch was originally intended to be the main character, but it was later switched to IdiotHero Vaan because the creators thought that he would have more of an Everyman appeal.
* Dave in ''ManiacMansion''. He's Sandy's boyfriend, but other than that, he's pretty much just an Everyman. And while the other six characters can play an instrument (Syd/Razor), fix radios and/or telephones (Bernard/Jeff, although Jeff can only fix telephones), develop rolls of film (Michael), and proofread manuscripts (Wendy), Dave has no abilities or talents at all. Sadly, since he's the also the lead character, he's also the only one you can't NOT choose.
* Several of the survivor characters in the ''VideoGame/Left4Dead'' series fall into the everyman trope:
** Louis works at the IT department of an electronics store and plays video games. Other than going to a gun rage on his lunch breaks, Louis doesn't do anything else out of the ordinary.
** Zoey is a college student whose parents are separated. She's a huge fan of zombie films as well, but nothing else stands out about her.
** Coach is a high school health teacher whose knees were injured from college football in his younger days.
** Ellis is a mechanic who occasionally plays in a band with his buddies during his downtime.
* Visual novels, dating sims and eroges tend to have blank slate protagonists so the player can step into the role more easily.
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[[folder:Webcomics]]
* The protagonist of ''Webcomic/ABeginnersGuideToTheEndOfTheUniverse''. Literally has the name Everyman. [[spoiler:As it turns out, he is literally a godlike anthropomorphic personification of humankind as a whole.]]
-->''You have no NAME, you are the EVERYMAN. Your interests are NONSPECIFIC ENTERTAINMENT and SPORTS. Job: wall paint watcher, amnesiac.''
* Bob in ''TheInexplicableAdventuresOfBob'' is frequently touted as "the world's most average man," despite the fact that he has in fact developed a pretty clear personality.
* Reg, the title character of ''RegularGuy''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* The Everyman most famous to the average person would probably be MickeyMouse.
** Most early animation characters fit into this trope, for that matter - such as Bosko, Felix the Cat, [[WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes Porky Pig]], etc.
** Goofy became this in the Fifties, starring as George Geef, with a son, a wife, and increased intellegence (though not much). He's mostly went back to his more famous personality since.
* LooneyTunes and MerrieMelodies:
** In the "Three Bears" series, Papa Bear will often try to come across as an Every Bear, mixing it with OnlySaneMan. Averted, of course, through his ill temperament and Junyer's bumbling.
** Several latter-day Elmer Fudd cartoons place the hunter into "everyman" roles, in satirical cartoons on such things as dog-master relationships.
** Sylvester the Cat has also been cast as Every Cat, particularly when paired with Sylvester Jr.
* The titular character from ''{{Doug}}''.
* Hank Hill in ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'', although he [[{{Flanderization}} gradually grew into]] an uptight StrawVulcan who served as [[SitcomCharacterArchetypes the stick]] for everyone else.
** In later seasons, if the authors were feeling particularly conservative that week, he started giving lengthy {{Author Filibuster}}s on the evils of [=McMansions=], gratuitous lawsuits, gentrification, {{Hipster}}s, protesters, the porn industry, etc and ended up simply being right without any sort of comedic twist.
* Arnold eventually becomes this in the later seasons of [[WesternAnimation/HeyArnold his series.]]
* Stan in later episodes of ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark''.
* WesternAnimation/{{Arthur}}.
* Horace in ''TheProblemSolverz''.
* Nitz in ''{{Undergrads}}''. He's lazy and sarcastic, but far less "out there" than any of his friends, and is known for having few extreme interests or opinions.
* Rufus and Amberley in ''TheDreamstone'' for the line of work they had, were portrayed as rather normal acting kids who usually handle their jobs in a rather uneventful and conflictless manner until the Urpneys break the normality of things. Less prominant in earlier episodes where they are slightly wackier and brattier (something that actually cost Rufus at least three everyman jobs beforehand).
* Tommy Pickles in Seasons 4 and later on in ''WesternAnimation/{{Rugrats}}''.
* Charlie Collins from the ''WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries'' episode "The Joker's Favor" fits the description to a T, and that was the whole point. The fact that the Joker would spend two years keeping track of this poor guy only to find him and sadistically hold him up to a promise later, even though it [[ForTheEvulz didn't benefit him in the least]], only serves to show what a monster he is.
[[/folder]]

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