->''"Well, you're in your little room and you're working on something good.\\
But if it's really good, you're gonna need a bigger room.\\
And when you're in the bigger room you might not know what to do.\\
You might have to think of how you got started: sitting in your little room."''
--> -- '''Music/TheWhiteStripes''', "Little Room"

A character becomes successful in an activity, promptly lets success go to his or her head, and then loses the drive that made him or her successful in the first place.

Say Bob is a talented singer/songwriter. He got it from years of practice and determination, and eventually gets noticed for it. He gets a cushy contract, and women are all over him. Soon he loses the determination to make good songs, and only cares about the money and the prestige, rejecting the idea of DoingItForTheArt even when he can afford to do potentially unprofitable side projects.

What happens then can vary. He might become a {{Jerkass}} to his friends, or a jerk to everyone else. He might start losing his skill and have to take drugs just to get on stage. He might lose his contract and his money, and either learn an {{Aesop}} or spend the rest of his life moping about his GloryDays. He might even keep all those, and get a job as a music executive where he's totally cynical to anyone [[SillyRabbitIdealismIsForKids new who thinks this is "just about the music"]].

This can make up entire plots, or just make a backstory for some character who is either the cynic or lost it all. Often happens in a SitCom, sort of overlapping with CompressedVice. In this case, losing it all is how the ResetButton is pressed. This can be TruthInTelevision, although many times it's hard to tell, as it's often fans complaining of SellOut and ItsPopularNowItSucks.

Note this doesn't count when Bob just gets caught up in recreational drugs. That's covered under HookersAndBlow and SexDrugsAndRockAndRoll.

Compare/Contrast ICouldaBeenAContender.


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Mokoyama from ''Manga/YakitateJapan'' got this way when he was hired by St. Pierre, becoming more interested in luxury and makeovers than baking.
* ''Anime/FinalFantasyVIIAdventChildren'' reveals this has happened to ''the entire playable cast'' bar Cloud. Even Vincent, who puts up a gunslinger of a fight against the antagonists and seems to honestly be in better shape than the rest, refuses to hop in the fight and forces everyone else to sit back and watch.
* In ''Anime/DragonBallZ'', Videl explains that after Mr. Satan became world famous, he got so caught up the money, prestige, and women that he stopped training. Gohan sensed that Videl was already stronger and more skilled in martial arts than Mr. Satan.
* ''Manga/TigerMask'' propose an interesting variant: at one pointsTiger Mask ''did'' stop training beyond the bare minimum and lost his edge, but was ''because'' the reason he was fighting, namely [[SavingTheOrphanage paying the bills for the orphanage where he grew up before Tiger's Cave]], got him caught in a series of matches for his NWA Maskmen World Champion belt and just didn't have time to train, and by the time he got to the eight and last challenger, Tiger's Cave wrestler Miracle 3, he wasn't at his best anymore, and once his [[FinishingMove Fujiyama Tiger Breaker]] failed he couldn't fight back effectively and lost. [[LaserGuidedKarma Winning backfired horribly on Miracle 3]], as losing gave Tiger Mask the time to train himself back into shape (becoming a match for Miracle 3) and devise the Tiger V (that Miracle 3, not having seen before, could not counter), leading to Miracle 3's defeat and [[spoiler:unmasking as a fraud]].

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}'' has tycoon Adrian Veidt who uses his former superhero persona Ozymandias as a merchandising juggernaut. Rorschach sees him as a sellout. [[spoiler:He couldn't be more wrong. His obsession with saving the world far outstrips Rorschach's, with tragic results.]]

* In ''Film/TheLifeOfEmileZola'', Zola's friend Paul Cezanne accuses Zola of this, saying that Zola has given up his youthful passion for the comfortable life of a famous writer. Zola later admits Cezanne is right, but Zola finds his passion again when he stands up for the wrongly imprisoned Alfred Dreyfus.
* A theme in ''Film/RockyIII'' is that Rocky Balboa got so caught up in the fame and money that he lost his edge. His rival Clubber Lang paints himself as the hungry new star and Rocky of being a "paper champion" living on past glory. Heck, the theme for the movie even includes the trope name.
--> '''Mickey:''' "The worst thing that happened to you, that can happen to any fighter: you got civilized."
* A theme in ''Film/CitizenKane'', as Kane, a young crusading newspaper owner, becomes TheMan in his later life.
* ''Film/WaynesWorld'', although Wayne and Garth get past it quickly when they see the price they are paying.
* ''Film/TwoForTheMoney''. Creator/MatthewMcConaughey is a former athlete who becomes a successful sports betting advisor due to his knowledge, meticulous research and expert analysis. Once he reaches the top he becomes so enamoured of his own legend that he stops doing the work that made him so good in the first place.
* The main theme of ''Film/TheCandidate''. Bill [=McKay=] is an idealistic liberal crusader recruited for a Senate campaign that neither he nor his campaign manager thinks he has any chance of winning--the idea is that simply by running, Bill will raise awareness of his liberal causes. However, as the campaign unfolds, it turns out that Bill ''does'' have a chance to win. Faced with the chance to actually be a senator, Bill rapidly starts making compromises and selling out his principles. In the end he wins, but he's sold his soul and has no idea what to do.
* In ''Film/TheCitadel'', Andrew Manson starts out as a crusading young doctor doing pioneering research in tuberculosis. But this leaves him hungry and broke, so he sells out and joins a practice catering to rich hypochondriacs. He earns a lot of money, but feels guilty.
* Jack from ''Film/LAConfidential'' is a brilliant police detective but he's gotten used to living the Hollywood lifestyle because he's on the take and he consults for a TV police drama. The Night Owl murder investigation reinvigorates him. [[spoiler:He is killed by his corrupt chief when he finds a clue.]]
* ''Franchise/StarWars'': Yoda tells Luke that part of the reason the Jedi fell was that the Order had lost touch with their spiritual and peaceful ways, allowing themselves to become mired in political and material matters while acting as peacekeepers for the Republic.

* ''Literature/TheGreatGatsby'': Gatsby had a lot of dreams and wanted to do a lot of great things, but his infautation with StepfordSmiler Daisy led him to become millionaire by being a smuggler:
--> ''Well, there I was, way off my ambitions, getting deeper in love every minute, and all of a sudden I didn't care. What was the use of doing great things if I could have a better time telling her what I was going to do?''
* ''Literature/TheStand'': Played completely straight with the musician Larry Underwood, although he eventually stops acting that way.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* Played with in the second season of ''Series/{{Extras}}''. The main character, Andy, gets his own sitcom which makes him ridiculously famous...but the show has been [[ExecutiveMeddling meddled]] with so much that it's no longer any good in Andy's opinion (and in the opinion of LOTS of other people.) Andy struggles with continuing to do the show and being a rich laughingstock or quitting the show (and permanently damaging his career) to do better work.

* The TropeNamer is ''Film/RockyIII'''s anthem "[[CrowningMusicOfAwesome Eye Of The Tiger]]" by Music/{{Survivor}}. The song is basically a summary of Rocky's meteoric rise and subsequent BadassDecay during the film. Of course it also details Rocky's triumphant comeback as he regains his killer instinct, the titular "eye of the tiger."
--> "So many times it happens too fast,\\
You trade your passion for glory.\\
Don't lose your grip on the dreams of the past,\\
You must fight just to keep them alive."

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* Many stories in the WWF/WWE highlight this trope as the frequent downfall of heels (and occasionally faces) who have been champions for long periods of time. Eventually a combination of arrogance and complacency lands them a defeat at the hands of their title hungry rival.
** Stone Cold's infamous FaceHeelTurn had him ally with ArchEnemy Wrestling/VinceMcMahon to claim the title at Wrestlemania 17. However Austin's main drive was largely to torment and harass Vince and his allies. His BadassDecay got to the point where Vince himself was actively trying to provoke him into attacking him so he'd snap out of it. Fittingly Austin did eventually return to his [[BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor old self]] by [[ChronicBackStabbingDisorder screwing]] Vince and the ''entire'' WWF - by handing a win to WCW, no less.
** CM Punk accused John Cena, in his hometown of Boston no less, of having sold-out his ideals and no longer being the plucky underdog he portrayed himself as. Punk pointed out he was now a multi-time champion and merchandise machine. His greatest insult came when he claimed that as much as Cena wanted to pretend he was like his beloved Red Sox, he was more like the ''New York Yankees''.

* This is the plot of ''Theatre/MerrilyWeRollAlong'' (both the Kaufman and Hart play and the musical loosely based on it), only done BackToFront.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Ace Hardlight in ''VideoGame/RatchetDeadlocked''.
* In ''VideoGame/DeadRising2: Off the Record'', Frank West got so caught up in the fame he got from the events of ''VideoGame/DeadRising'' that all he was doing was talk shows and publicity events. Soon his FifteenMinutesOfFame are up and he has to rediscover what made him famous in the first place, being an awesome [[IntrepidReporter photojournalist]] and zombie-slaying hero.
* The protagonists of ''VideoGame/Persona5'' lose sight of their original goals as they try to win support from the public. Going after more high profile targets to win public support, unintentionally turning themselves into a fad rather then true social reformists in the public's eyes. [[spoiler:It turns out this was all part of a BatmanGambit by Masayoshi Shido and TheConspiracy to discredit the Phantom Thieves by framing them for murder after their target dies on TV. Though the Phantom Thieves were set up and didn't actually kill anyone, the public thinks they did, and support for the Phantom Thieves plummets.]]
* This is one of the major themes of ''VideoGame/SaintsRowTheThird''. The Saints have become just as much media empire as gang, and they've grown soft as a result, allowing The Syndicate to nearly take them out. The rest of the game is about regaining their edge.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Seems to happen to at least one Griffin family member at least once a season on ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy''.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Daria}}'' has a variant in one episode where artsy Jane gets a job doing copies of famous pictures for some easy money. She soon loses motivation to do her own original work and is noticeably stung when a customer notes that her technique is becoming lazy.
* Pirate Captain in ''WesternAnimation/ThePiratesInAnAdventureWithScientists'' actually trades his TeamPet (who turns out to be a surviving Dodo) for a load of treasure just to win Pirate of the Year.
* ''WesternAnimation/ArthurChristmas'' turned out to have three generations of Santas fall into this. In the end they remember Christmas is about the children, not their inflated egos.