Alternative Character Interpretation / Other

  • For the Cheetos commercials, The Cheetos Cheetah appears to people and encourages them to do something bad to people who are annoying them, which seems basis for a psychotic illusion for the mentally unstable.
  • Then there's Dr. Rabbit, the anthropomorphic mascot of Colgate designed to market oral health products to young children and promote dental hygiene. As helpful and well-intentioned as he's portrayed in the educational videos featuring him, YouTube Poopers just love to paint this guy as some kind of bigoted pedophile who abducts children.
  • Due to Wendy's Twitter account,note  their typically cheerful mascot Wendy has been interpreted by many to be a Deadpan Snarker

Fairy Tales
  • Many retellings of Cinderella include the two stepsisters... however, many portray one of these stepsisters as not being all that bad. It's always the younger of the two who does this - and sometimes she may end off better when karma bites them and the wicked stepmother in the ass. (In fact, many older versions have the younger sister be the one who calls her Cinderella, as opposed to Cinderslut.) This shows in Ever After, and even seeped into the Disney version where the sequels show Anastasia undergoing Character Development.
  • In The Little Mermaid, the little mermaid seems more interested in the whole "receiving a mortal soul" thing that comes with a human falling for a mermaid than she actually does the prince. Does she really love him as much as she says or is she only using him as an excuse because she's afraid of the Cessation of Existence?
  • The Pied Piper of Hamelin is sometimes shown to take the children away not as Disproportionate Retribution, but to save the children from a corrupt world or from becoming like their parents, who cheated him out of their promised payment.
  • The Snow Queen's personality and degree of villainy varies from adaptation to adaptation - some have her as a straight-up villain, while others portray her as more of an Anti-Villain who kidnapped Kai out of loneliness or to have him and/or Gerda help her fix the mirror or break a curse.
  • Some adaptations of Rapunzel, including Donna Jo Napoli's Zel, depict the witch as a Knight Templar Parent who genuinely loves Rapunzel but goes overboard with her protectiveness. Disney's Tangled was even meant to originally go this route, however they decided to make her an emotionally abusive parent who loves Rapunzel like an object.

Professional Wrestling
  • Matt and Jeff Hardy. Depending on which degree of smark you are, one brother is potentially the future of the entire business, and the other shouldn't even be working the lowliest of indies shows. You can swap out whichever one you like.
  • The Undertaker gets a lot of these, thanks to being Undead Druidic All-American Cowboy Biker, but the most popular one is, that during Ministry of Darkness era, he was Brainwashed and Crazy by Vince McMahon into believing he killed his parents and being more evil than ever before or after.
  • Vince McMahon himself. Either he's one of the most brilliant showmen of all time and a man who should be hailed by all who would call themselves wrestling fans, or he's an imbecilic amoral scumbag who's only redeeming feature is that he knows to run with what's popular.
  • Evolution Schematic, a column at 411mania's wrestling site, is all about alternate character interpretations, specifically about finding the defining trait that serves as a wrestler's focus through all his Heel Face Turns, Face Heel Turns, gimmick changes, changes of employers, and other such nastiness.
  • Ever since the new incarnation of ECW debuted, fans have criticized the third brand for being a nothing more than a pale imitation of its former namesake, even moreso after a gradual talent purge left Tommy Dreamer the sole ECW Original. However, some enjoy the new ECW for having the pure wrestling that Raw and Smackdown sometimes lack and its focus on making newer stars and elevating wrestlers that aren't ready for Raw or Smackdown. In fact, repeat that last sentence subbing WWF for Raw and WCW for Smackdown and you may have a decent show to watch every Tuesday that just fell victim to a PG mandate a lot earlier than the other two brands did but recently found its own niche. Taz, after leaving WWE, once said call it something else and it would a cool hour.

  • Many roleplayers use the ITT: We Are Our Avatars thread as a way to experiment with giving their characters different personalities. Several characters who began almost completely faithful to canon have changed and in many cases even gained new powers due to their interactions with other characters.


  • The lovable 2chan character Kuma was an excited bear who loved dancing. But on 4chan, a series of ShiftJIS posts showed Kuma having a phone conversation with a young, impressionable anime girl. From that day on, Kuma received a wildly different interpretation on 4chan than on the originating imageboard, to the point where the bear is hardly referred to by his original name, and further variations have popped up such as a Mexican bear.

Web Video
  • Camp Camp:
    • David is shown as a Stepford Smiler who's deeply in denial about how bad things are at the camp, but was the moment where he finally broke down and admitted how bad things were a result of him finally accepting reality or dropping his cheerful facade and admitting what he's really know this whole time? It could go either way as it's unclear whether David is genuinely tuning out of reality or simply covering his worries with a smile at any given time.
    • David mentions in episode 2 that he can only do a few camp activities without Gwen. Does that mean he's not competent enough to run things on his own, the workload is genuinely too much for him alone, or he legally can't do those things without her?
  • One interpretation of Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog is that Dr. Horrible is an Unreliable Narrator who twists events to make himself seem nicer and Captain Hammer seem meaner than they actually are. As presented by the blog, Dr. Horrible as an Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain incapable of true villainy until the events of the story push him over the edge while Captain Hammer is a Jerk Jock Smug Super who dates the girl Horrible likes just to mess with him. However, if you put their personalities aside, they can be read as a straight hero and villain. Hammer attempts to stop Dr. Horrible from committing a crime, saves Penny's life in the process, begins a relationship with her, helps out at the homeless shelter she volunteers at, and only tries to kill Horrible after Horrible first attempts to kill him. Dr. Horrible, on the other hand, is a Mad Scientist who aspires to join the Evil League of Evil, stalks Penny, steals some Unobtainium, tries to commit another heist before being foiled by Hammer, and attempts to Murder the Hypotenuse after Penny and Hammer fall in love. Since they're pretty much intentional designated heroes and villains, this was probably inevitable.
  • The Game Grumps often come up with different interpretations of characters from the games they play.
    • Egoraptor believes that Kirby is a xenophobic psycho, which... isn't that far from canon.note 
    • Their playthrough of Banjo-Kazooie has a lot due to its varied supporting cast.
      • Gloop the Fish is a depressed teenager, whose farts can get you high. His friends exploit this, and are only his friends because of this, always trying to get him to come to parties just so he can fart for them.note  He also has a cousin named Beezenbatz that no one invites to parties because when anyone tries to invite him, people think he's trying to bring live animals.
      • Boggy the Bear is a deadbeat Dad that lets his 3 kids go hungry while he sleeps outside and also ate a Jiggy piece despite having 2 more ready to give away and therefore should have been familiar with them.
      • Mumbo Jumbo is a depressed Barbiturate abuser that only stays alive because Banjo visits him for the Transformations.
      • The mummy in the matching game pyramid just desperately wants to give you a hug because he died in a disfiguring accident and none of his friends know that he's still around. He's also a ghoul.
    • During their time in Athens, they've been interpreting nearly all their neighbours, such as Maelle as a chain smoker and Sally as a child abuse victim.
    • Rouge the Bat quiffs pokéballs out of her snatch.
    • Rocky from Kirby Super Star is a lazy, overweight, slow loser who gently walks wherever he's needed, while screaming up ladders at fast speeds.
      • Chameleusnote  has a family and two friends named Bob and Bill. Bill bought Chameleus a Game Boy Advance for his birthday and Chameleus, being more of a Sega guy, was a bit offended. However Chameleus covered it up well and pretended that he enjoyed the gift because he's very good at camouflaging himself.
    • Moundo, a mini boss in Kirby's Return to Dream Land, is not a rock. He is a grouchy mound who can't deny that he has a weight problem yet can't work out... since he's not human. If he were to be chiseled, it would hurt. The other rocks make fun of him because his mother was bad at naming.
    • For some reason, Ego is convinced that Luigi hails from Nazi Germany.
    • War is a misunderstood Woobie who just wants to be loved. However, whenever he attempts to hug people it, "hurts them... and me."
    • They decide that the characters in Wild Guns are ruthless bandits, and all the enemies are just trying to protect their homes.
    • According to Egoraptor, Mickey Mouse is a man who has detachable ears and has a disorder where he has big hands, feet, and head, which he hides by claiming he's a cartoon character. When he goes home, he beats himself up, saying to himself that he's a freak whom no one loves.
  • Mario Party TV:
    • Waluigi has polio, and any coins he wins in the games that don't go towards Stars are for the Polio Fund.
    • According to events in King Boo's Haunted Hideaway, Boo is a deadbeat dad who ran out on his ex-girlfriend Pink Boo and their kids, and has a strained relationship with his father King Boo.
  • Nicobbq is pretty much a fan of this trope with his "NOT A" series, involving videos listing several reasons why the stated video game character (usually from Super Mario Bros.) defies their said character trait.note 
  • Matthew Santoro:
    • Matt has a clone, Hugo, who is insane. Or is he? Depending on your interpretation, Hugo might actually be an intelligent Cloudcuckoolander who just has a terrible way of communicating things. Or maybe even both! For example, in Psychic Octopus & Oil Spills, Matt takes an hour to figure out that the answer to a math problem is 7. When he's done, before he announces this, Hugo comes in and says that it's obviously 7.
    • Matt has a clone, Eugene, who is a nerd and The Smart Guy. Matt looks down upon him for being a nerd, and he sometimes threatens Matt with a lightsaber. This has inspired numerous interpretations of him: Is he a nice guy who doesn't deserve being looked down upon by Matt, a Jerkass who takes things too far when he threatens Matt with a lightsaber, or a guy who takes it too far when he threatens Matt, but doesn't deserve being looked down upon by him just for being a nerd?
    • Eugene is supposed to be smart, but is he really? In Star Wars in 3-D!!!, he requires a calculator to solve a simple math problem.
    • Lorrenzo claims to always "get some bitches", but it's possible that he's actually a Casanova Wannabe and is merely lying to make himself look cool. After all, we never actually see him outside of Matt's house.
    • In Q&A with Matt #3, Matt is asked by a fan what the most shocking thing he's discovered is, and he says it was a troll in his butt. Was he talking about the mythical creature, or an internet troll? Given how much Matt criticizes the latter kind, it would make sense for Matt to be shocked by it.
    • Some viewers have theorized that Matt is actually Hugo's failed clone, rather than the other way around.
    • In "20 Ways to Lose Your Card", Matt lists 20 ways a man can lose his man card, a symbolic representation of one's manliness. The man card is seen as a good thing by Matt. Did Matt intend this as a mere comedic video, or was he using the Straw Misogynist trope as a Take That! against misogynists?