- In the Chalet School series, Miss Wilson has a reputation for being very sarcastic with students who get on her bad side. And that includes Joey.
- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has Willy Wonka, who is prone to brushing off the Golden Ticket tour group's constant questions about his crazy world with whimsical and sometimes stealthily insulting asides. When explaining the effects of Hair Toffee to the group, Spoiled Brat Veruca Salt asks "Who wants a beard, for heaven's sake?" "It would suit you very well," Mr. Wonka notes before moving on. Adaptations take this particular character trait and run with it.
- Eustace from The Chronicles of Narnia, with his "habit of being dreadfully matter-of-fact." Edmund too, who after the first book switches from caustic Jerkass to lovable Deadpan Snarker. Reepicheep fits both in the books:
Caspian: There are some things no man can face.
Reepicheep: It is then my good fortune not to be a man.
- In the films (played by Eddie Izzard)
Caspian: Y-you are a mouse.
Reepicheep: I was hoping for something a little more original.
- Queen Jadis a.k.a. the White Witch, practically lives for this role (and to turn people to stone).
"But what are ''you?" said the Queen again. "Are you a great overgrown dwarf who has cut off its beard?"
"No, your Majesty," said Edmund, "I never had a beard, I'm a boy."
"A boy!" said she. "Do you mean you are a Son of Adam?"
Edmund stood still, saying nothing. He was too confused by by this time to understand what the question meant.
"I see you are an idiot, whatever else you may be," said the Queen.
- Edmund is actually the biggest snarker in the series. His line of snarky replies is quite long and some of them have practically become popular on the internet:
Susan: Besides, we could all use the fresh air.
Edmund: It's not like there isn't air inside.
Peter: Is it Latin?
Edmund: Is it Latin for worst game ever invented?
Lucy: Weren't you wondering where I was?
Edmund: That's the point. That was why he was seeking you.
- In the second part:
Susan: Pretend you're talking to me.
Edmund: We are talking to you.
- After Susan and Caspian's kiss:
Lucy: I'm sure when I'm older, I'll understand.
Edmund: I'm older and I don't think I want to understand.
- To Peter:
Edmund: I know...you had it sorted.
- When talking to Miraz:
Miraz: This is not a question of bravery.
Edmund: So you're bravely refusing to fight a swordsman half your age.
- And in the third part, he's actually in his full Deadpan Snarker mode.
Reepicheep: (about Eustace) He's quite the complainer, isn't he?
Edmund: He's just warming up.
- To Eustace:
Edmund: I have the right to tell your father it was you who stole aunt Alberta's sweets.
- When rolling in:
Soldier: Are you sure you're 18?
Edmund: Why, do I look older?
- How To Survive A Zombie Apocalypse has a main cast full of them, presumably because there is a reason to be snarky most of the time as everything going on is so utterly ridiculous. Only Sane Man Butch takes the trophy, with the pseudo-tsundere protagonist as a runner up.
- Christopher in The Lives of Christopher Chant, sometimes more than is good for him.
- Ciaphas Cain, HERO OF THE IMPERIUM, does this constantly, and often regardless of whether the target is currently attempting to kill him. About the only ones that don't receive this are beings that don't speak, such as Necrons and Tyranids (not that he doesn't try on occasion), and Inquisitors, who are in practice of a far higher rank and rarely tolerate anything resembling amusement (with the exception of Vail, who seems to grow rather fond of verbal matches with him). Vail herself also seems to possess an inclination for this trope, if her footnotes are any indication.
- Flora Poste in Cold Comfort Farm is a borderline snarker, although her good breeding mostly keeps it in check.
- Micheal "Mickey" Flynn from Harry Turtledove's Colonization series seems to get at least one line a section, and often rather more common (half his lines to Johnson on occasion seem to be deadpan snarks), at least in the proximity of Glen Johnson. Runners up are Glen Johnson himself, and Charles Healey. All the Americans get at least one line in, as well as a few of the Lizards (especially Atvar).
- Every main character in The Cornersville Trace Mythos.
- Elizabeth Bathory in Count and Countess.
- Daisy Miller:
Winterbourne: If you won't flirt with me, do cease, at least, to flirt with your friend at the piano; they don't understand that sort of thing here. Not in young unmarried women.
Daisy: It seems to me much more proper in young unmarried women than in old married ones.
- Navis from The Dalemark Quartet.
- Darkness Visible takes place in a Victorian World of Snark, so it's hardly surprising that many characters qualify. Lewis snarks the most, being the narrator, but Marsh, Spangler, George and Wilson get in on the fun:
‘Would it help if I wrote you a list?’ I asked sarcastically. ‘The “Ten Commandments of Venturing”, perhaps.
(on being told Wilson could stop him getting a job in London): ‘There are many other cities in the Empire,’ Marsh replied. ‘And I have never much cared for English weather.’
Spangler: ‘Well, well, old boy, you’re alive after all,’ he said, by way of a greeting.
‘I know, it’s a terrible disappointment for all concerned.’
Wilson: ‘Teaching this lad here?’ Wilson said, turning a critical eye on Marsh, who was as extravagantly attired as ever. His gaze lingered on Marsh’s bandaged right hand. ‘I can see that has been going very well.’
- Alan Dean Foster's spinoff Dinotopia novels feature a wisecracking Protoceratops named Chaz. Bix from the main books also shows hints of this.
- In Terry Pratchett's Discworld:
- Samuel Vimes and Esmerelda Weatherwax, both of which are particularly Genre Savvy (and hate having to be). They are both aware of the Theory of Narrative Causality, though with Vimes it's more of an instinctive understanding.
- Lord Vetinari's snark is rumored to be so caustic that Sgt. Colon lives in fear of the patrician getting sardonic on him. (Although when it did happen, he never even noticed. Subtle and clever verbal abuse is wasted on some people.)
- The Lemony Narrator Terry Pratchett himself.
- Rincewind also has his moments; having long given up trying to use his Genre Savviness to stay out of dangerous situations, he occasionally uses it to be sarcastic about them.
- Every line uttered by Salzalla in Maskerade drips with sarcasm, at least before he is revealed as the villain, and rapidly loses the plot. For instance, suggesting to Mr. Bucket that if the ballerinas did more leaps, it might save on wear and tear on ballet shoes:
"Well, their feet wouldn't be on the ground for so long, would they?" said Salzella, in the tones of one who knows for a fact that he's much more intelligent than anyone else in the room.
- Pratchett himself can be quite the snarker, such as his response to someone claiming that he had ripped off Harry Potter (which came out after the novel in question):
"I, of course, used a time machine to 'get the idea' of Unseen University from Hogwarts; I don't know what Paul [Kidby, the illustrator] used in this case. Obviously he must have used something."
- Professor Bernice Surprise Summerfield in the Doctor Who Expanded Universe. In No Future, for instance, she dismisses the Vardans based on their only TV appearance.
Benny: The Vardans? I think you'll find that your enemies tremble with mirth and cry out things like "Oh good, it's only the Vardans, thank goodness it wasn't somebody serious like the Daleks". You are, after all, the only race in history to be outwitted by the intellectual might of the Sontarans.'
- Don Quixote: Deconstructed by Sancho Panza: What happens in Real Life to those who cannot say anything without being sarcastic? Why, Sancho is beaten by Don Quixote and a lot of other people. The problem is that a lot of people enjoys Sancho’s sarcasm (he is good at it) and so he feels compelled to say it, even when he is in perilous situations, like when he denied payment to a Innkeeper (Chapter XVII part I), and he mocked the entire people of the Braying Town or the highwaymen of Barcelona (Chapters XXVII and LX of the part II) The first give him a beating, the highwaymen almost kill him:
Upon this Sancho remarked, "From what I have seen here, justice is such a good thing that there is no doing without it, even among the thieves themselves."
One of the squires heard this, and raising the butt-end of his harquebuss would no doubt have broken Sancho's head with it had not Roque Guinart called out to him to hold his hand. Sancho was frightened out of his wits, and vowed not to open his lips so long as he was in the company of these people.
The unlucky wight did not speak so low but that Roque overheard him, and drawing his sword almost split his head in two, saying, "That is the way I punish impudent saucy fellows." They were all taken aback, and not one of them dared to utter a word, such deference did they pay him.
- Everyone in the Doom novels. If sarcasm and smart-ass could kill monsters the invasion never would have progressed past Phobos.
- Both of The Hardy Boys can be this (even when at the villain's mercy); however, while Frank definitely does have many good lines of snark, Joe is the one who is especially known for this. Just about every sentence out of his mouth when talking to the bad guys will be some of this. Both brothers are acknowledged for this in-universe, with their allies and enemies alike lampshading it.
- Vlad, Kragar, and Loiosh from Steven Brust's Taltos series all fit this one. Pel in the Khaavren Romances, too.
- Vern, the dragon protagonist and narrator of Karina Fabian's "Dragon Eye, P.I." books, seems to be made of fire and snark.
- Most characters in Jim Butcher's The Dresden Files do this at least occasionally. Michael and Mab are probably the only two recurring characters who do not regularly indulge (even Nicodemus has his moments). Harry himself is such a memetic snarker that when he accidentally mouths off to Odin's secretaries, he claims that to not insult them to would be to impugn their reputation of incomprehensible badassery, because it's well know that Harry makes fun of all of them.
Person: "Who the hell are you?"
Harry "I the hell am Harry."
Person: "Are you always a wise-ass?"
Harry "No. Sometimes I'm asleep."
"I'll tear off your ass. Literally, your actual ass."
- Butcher seems to love snark in general; though there's much less of it than in The Dresden Files, there's still quite a bit of it flying around in the Codex Alera series. Most characters get their moment to shine, but the most persistent example is Doroga.
- Elsabeth Soesten and Brother Hieronymus of No Good Deed... are both quick with a smart remark with one another. However while Hieronymus is generally more diplomatic with others, Elsabeth snarks at pretty much everyone. Even church officials, much to Hieronymus's horror.
- Danjel in Vilhelm Moberg's The Emigrants suite manages to be a deadpan snarker and the meekest man around at the same time.
The Vicar: No one is allowed to give communion unless they are ordained.
Danjel: As far as I know, nowhere in the Bible does it say that Our Lord Jesus was ordained.
- Felix Castor - Felix lives this trope.
- The protagonist of Fifth Business is one.
- Trish in Finding Gaia fits this description well - she even has a real-world blog named "ecosnark."
- Several characters in The First Law, but especially Glokta. Then again, he has some good reasons for it.
- Diana, in the Gone series.
"Oh, look: Drake's trying to think."
- Howard also has this trope down.
- In Death series: Eve Dallas is so very much this.
- As is her aide/partner Peabody
Dallas: Was that sarcasm?
Peabody (considers): No, it was too direct for sarcasm.
- Actually, just about every named regular character, sooner or later.
- Pretty much all the cast in How To Survive A Zombie Apocalypse.
- In Loyal Enemies, Shelena seems physically unable not to snark.
(Rest claims that he left the tailors' guild by himself)
Shelena: Of course, who'd doubt that.
Rest: If so, stop grinning like that!
Shelena: Ah, come on. I just envy the people who managed to get rid of you so easily.
Veres: Shelena, I'm telling you for the tenth time...
Shelena: You'd better think for the first.
- Her internal monologue is full of that:
He might be really good battle wizard in the future. After all, he was already quite good at running away from the monster looking as if he was gracing it by it.
- Veres has his moments as well.
(After Shelena stomps on Darkness' tail, causing their task to be done with much ensuing hilarity)
Veres: Indeed, you're just plain born to work together.
- Interestingly used in Joan Hess's Maggody mysteries, where Arly Hanks makes innumerable sarcastic comments, yet almost no one in the county has enough brains to get the joke. Thus, she mostly has to make due with First-Person Smartass monologues except when interrogating out-of-town suspects.
- In Malazan Book of the Fallen Udinaas, Samar Dev, Bugg and Fiddler are all snarkers to some degree.
- The Maze Runner Trilogy:
- While not as immediately noticable, Newt also goes into Sarcasm Mode plenty of times.
- And Thomas picks it up from them.
- Everyone in the Mediochre Q Seth Series, including the narrative. Mediochre himself manages to stand out even then, as does his sidekick and frequent snarking partner Charlotte. The award for most beautifully deadpan line in the series, however, goes to the presumably-magic automated voice at the entrance to the MABGov meeting chamber.
Automated Voice: Please state name now, Sir, Madam or Other.
Mediochre: Dr Mediochre Quirinius Seth.
Automated Voice: Name not recognised. Please amend and state again.
Automated Voice: Go right in, Sir. Congratulations on your musical ability.
- Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe series has plenty, but Archie Goodwin, Nero Wolfe's legman, is a champion.
Quayle(upon ejection from Wolfe's office by Archie): You goddamn goon.
Archie: That's Goodwin. You left out the D,W,I, but I'll overlook it.
- Nightrunner is FULL of this, especially when Seregil is around. And put him and Thero into one room...
Seregil: (in otter form, throwing a fish at Thero's feet) A cold fish for a cold fish!
Thero: He never can go anywhere without stealing something.
- After his first transformation into an otter in front of Alec (who is a pelt hunter) he replies on latter's praise:
In light of your former profession, I'm not certain if this was a compliment or an appraisal of the worth of my pelt.
- After his uncle remarks that Seregil is the living image of his late mother Seregil retorts: "Just what a man wants to hear."
- Let's just say, Lynn Flewelling herself is a great snarker. And loves it.
- Tybalt, King of the Cats is practically unable to be anything but this around October Daye.
- Mogget, the cat-formed servant of the Abhorsens in Garth Nix's Old Kingdom series practically personifies this trope. The Disreputable Dog has her moments too.
- While in the main Outlander series, Lord John Gray is an example of the Officer and a Gentleman played relatively straight, he displays some definite tendencies towards being a deadpan snarker. (Well, when he's not mooning after Jamie.) Again, to some degree in his own series as well.
- Blake Thorburn, from Pact, would be one, but magicians in the Pact setting aren't allowed to lie, so he has to keep his snark mental. He's very bitter about this.
Blake: Thank you for the commentary. I’d say it was doing lots for my morale, but I’m not allowed to be sarcastic anymore."
- Gail Carriger's Parasol Protectorate series has quite a few of these. Professor Lyall is a big one though. He has to be, being Lord Maccon's beta.
- Everyone in Percy Jackson and the Olympians. (Even the chapter titles are snarked.)
Ethan: My mother promised me glory. An eye was a small price to pay.
Percy: Great mom.
- Richard Cole from The Power of Five.
- Halt from Ranger's Apprentice is a Deadpan Snarker - if he's suddenly serious, you know something's very, very wrong.
- The title character in Ratman's Notebooks (the source material for the Willard movies). He's so good at it that he often comes across as a satirist or an observational comedian rather than the Ed Gein-inspired criminal he is.
- Keith Laumer's Retief often displays a casual snarkiness regarding the rest of the CDT and how the organization is run. He often exploits his superiors' disdain for this in order to get sent into the thick of things as a punishment. Many of the aliens or human natives encountered also get in on the act.
- The Reynard Cycle: Reynard snarks so much that he engages in Witty Banter even when he is fighting for his life. It generally annoys the heck out of his enemies. When he stops doing this it's usually a very bad sign.
- Shaman of the Undead has some starling examples, like annoying aunt Tekla, whose deadness doesn't stop her from berating Ida in creative ways when the girl doesn't want to do something. Other is Redhead, who constantly teases Ida and Brittle, who learn to answer in kind out of sheer self-defense.
- Sherlock Holmes
- Sherlock Holmes is this trope!
Athelney Jones: (talking about a Locked Room Mystery)
What do you think of this, Holmes? Sholto was, on his own confession, with his brother last night. The brother died in a fit, on which Sholto walked off with the treasure? How's that? Sherlock Holmes:
On which the dead man very considerately got up and locked the door on the inside.
- Watson has had his own fair share of snarks, to the point that Holmes does comment on his "pawky humour."
- And his non-canonical protégée and later wife, Mary Russell, in the Mary Russell books is just as deadpan a snarker as Holmes.
- Sisterhood Series by Fern Michaels: Jack Emery can do this like nobody else can. More than one character calls him a wiseass.
- Asher from Someone Else's War is spectacular at this.
- Melinda, the main character of Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak, is deadpan in all aspects of life. Considering she was raped at an end-of-summer party at the age of fourteen, it's understandable. This doesn't stop her from being one of Anderson's most hilarious and likable characters.
- Gerald Morris's The Squire's Tales turns many of King Arthur's knights into this. Particularly Gawain and Gaheris, Rhience, and Arthur himself when he allows himself.
- Jay, in the book series Spaceforce.
- Q, in the non-canon Star Trek book I, Q. "Yeah, and if that doesn't work, maybe the Easter Bunny will save us."
- Mara Jade and Ben Skywalker are prone to this, but where Mara will start snarking just for the hell of it, Ben tends to save particularly nasty comments for moments when he's genuinely unhappy (although as we see in Outcast, he's not immune to random outbursts, either). And yes, both of them share the same irreverent sense of humor. Like mother, like son, really.
Ben: (after hearing about one of Luke's earlier failures, specifically the cave section in ESB) You know, it gives me hope that you screwed up so badly and so consistently as a kid, Dad.
- Alys in Terra Mirum Chronicles is, in her friend Charlie's words, "Miss Always-Has-a-Snarky-Comeback."
- To Kill a Mockingbird - Atticus Finch is an unusually benevolent version.
- Sarah in her normal life in Tales of an Mazing Girlis pretty snarky. She tends to only *think* it however when she puts on her mask, which is onle of the central tension.
- Mephistopheles in Steven Brust's To Reign in Hell.
- The title character of George RR Martin's Tuf Voyaging really has no emotions except for sarcasm, but he disguises it with enough Spock Speak that many of his interlocutors never realize that they've been insulted.
- The unnamed debt-collector narrator of most of the "Cyclops" episode in James Joyce's Ulysses is one of the most caustic and mean-minded snarkers ever written.
- Seems to be an inborn trait of the rats in The Underland Chronicles, who are also some of the few underlanders to use informal language.
Twitchtip: (when Photos-glow-glow "can't understand" boots): Allow me to translate. She said If you don't stop you incessant bable that big rat sitting in the boat next to you will rip you head off.
- Vampire Academy:
- Rose is known to have a very dry wit and sense of humor. Her mouth has a habit of getting her in trouble sometimes.
- Christian. Of the Tall, Dark and Snarky variation. Some of his first sarcastic words to Lissa: "I love pity parties. I wish I'd brought the hats. What do you want to mope about first? How it's going to take you a whole day to be popular and loved again?"
- Jack in Sebastian Rook's Vampire Plague books. It really comes out when he's confronted with vampires. Or Dominique.
- Many of the characters in the Vorkosigan Saga have their moments, particularly Miles Vorkosigan himself, but Simon Illyan is probably the best example.
- The Russian diplomat Bilibin in War and Peace, known later in Petersburg society for what he calls his mots (French for "sayings").
- The Wheel of Time has several:
- The most obvious and recurring one is Matrim Cauthon. It eventually gets edged out by him being a Memetic Badass.
- His lieutenant, Talmanes, is so subtle at it that it took Mat months to realize that Talmanes was doing it at all - and then he quickly realized Talmanes never wasn't snarking.
- Lan Mandragoran. Tall, Dark and Snarky, to boot.
- Rand eventually gets shades of a gentle version after his near destruction of the world.
- The Aiel, in their own way. You'll have to know their culture to get their jokes, though. Sometimes better than the reader.
Eeyore shook himself, and asked somebody to explain to Piglet what happened when you had been inside a river for quite a long time.
- Rabbit has a couple of moments as well.
- The characters of Aaron Allston's parts of the X-Wing Series tend towards this trope. Most of the not-inconsiderable amount of humor in his books is of this variety.
Wedge: Phanan, Face, still Seven and Eight. I'd hate to break up the best comedy team this side of the janitor's closet.
Phanan: I love an understanding commander. Know where I can get one?
- Ayn Rand. Get this burn Francisco d'Anconia lays on Jim Taggart in Atlas Shrugged:
D'Anconia: It is unwise Jim, to venture unsolicited opinions. You may wish to spare yourself the embarrassing revelation of their exact value to the listener.
- And the smackdown Hank Rearden gives to his assistant:
Rearden: Run along, Non-Absolute. Try and pour a ton of molten steel on the expediency of the moment.
- Dagny is quite the snarker.
Dagny: I crashed the gate. Literally.
- Ayn herself: "If you don't understand my books, you sure as Hell won't understand my voice."
- Everything Douglas Adams writes is bound to have a deadpan snarker in it somewhere, but the most well known are Marvin and Arthur. Actually, apart from being fantastically and intrinsically linked to the events of the Earth blowing up (repeatedly) and wondering where the tea is, that's all Arthur does, although everyone gets in on the act at some point. Even the narrative. Constantly. Then again, it is Douglas Adams.
Richard: The teacher usually learns more than the pupils. Isn't that true?
Random Professor of Cambridge: It would be hard to learn much less than my pupils without undergoing a prefrontal lobotomy.
- Marvin in the aforementioned series is an all-time master of this trope. When he isn't bitching and moaning he's doing nothing but making snarky comments.
- Would you believe HP Lovecraft? From "The Dunwich Horror": "But then, the homes and sheds of Dunwich's folk have never been remarkable for olfactory immaculateness."
- One time a student of Lovecraft's mistook the common notation Ibid for the name of some ancient Roman fellow—which to be fair it does sound like. Lovecraft loved that so much that he wrote a story called "Ibid" about such a fellow in mockery. What kind of humour would you expect from a guy who thought that the universe was a harsh, hostile place?
- This letter To My Old Master, from a former slave.
- Most of Jane Austen's heroines have a streak of this. See Emma Woodhouse, Marianne and Elinor Dashwood, etc. They get it from their author, as we see from Miss Austen's private letters.
- Pride and Prejudice
- Elizabeth Bennet: "I give you leave to like him. You have liked many a stupider person." She gets it from her father:
"An unhappy alternative is before you, Elizabeth. From this day you must be a stranger to one of your parents. Your mother will never see you again if you do not marry Mr. Collins, and I will never see you again if you do."
- Mr. Darcy is quite the snarker himself. Their mutually snarky banter is the earliest indication that the two of them are better for each other than they realize.
- Machado de Assis's works often exhibit this.
- The aptly-named bathroom reader 1,001 Facts That Will Scare the S#*t Out of You is a collection of both disturbing statistics and an equal amount of snide remarks commenting on every single one.
(excerpt from the chapter 'And in My Spare Time, I Enjoy Dying', with boldface and italics as it appears) FACT: In boxing, a "knockout" is synonymous with cerebral concussion, which can lead to short- or long-term amnesia and confusion. Another concern is that the neurological damage is cumulative and makes the boxer increasingly vulnerable to future injury and permanent neurological trauma. Amnesia might not be a bad thing, in this case. Who wants to remember getting his ass kicked?
- Lizzie's character in Spider Circus is very much this, especially when talking to Jack.
- This exchange in Star Carrier: Earth Strike between Rear Admiral Alexander Koenig and his flag captain Randolph Buchanan:
I don't believe in "galactic empires"
) The whole idea is silly, given the size of the galaxy
Well, the Sh'daar
appear to believe in the concept, Admiral. And I doubt very much that it matters whether they agree with you on the point or not.
- The Windwater Pack: The reason Ashtree says sarcasm is Zephyr's first language. Apparently an inherited trait i.e. Layla and Cian. Sequana has her moments too. As does Moira: "You want to sing? This could easily be someone's territory. Sure; let's announce our presence to all and sundry."
- In The Stormlight Archive, this is literally the job of the Alethi King's Wit. Essentially, the King's Wit exists to insult people whom the king wants insulted, since it would be beneath the king's dignity to insult them himself.
- So, so many characters by Oscar Wilde. To name a few: Lord Henry from The Picture of Dorian Gray; Vivian in "The Decay Of Lying - An Observation"; Algeron and Lady Bracknell in The Importance of Being Earnest.
- Also many characters by Saki, both men and women (and the occasional cat).