Betty And Veronica Switch
In a Betty and Veronica
love triangle, the Betty somehow becomes
the Veronica, and vice versa.
This can happen in two different ways:
This trope is often used to criticize gender stereotypes such as the Madonna Whore Complex
, by introducing a Good Bad Girl
and a Hypocrite
as potential Love Interest
for a guillible hero and teaching him not to judge a book by its cover. Other examples for the mere sake of suspense also exist.
Rarely leads to a Shocking Swerve
. Indeed, most examples are The Untwist
, but not in a bad way, and it is always a pleasure for the audience to see the heroine / hero fall in love with the person they wanted to win. However, if done well, it can create astonishment and chracter development and a sense of shared guilt with the center of the Triangle for misjudging the Love Interest
Often a Subtrope
of the trope Unrequited Love Switcheroo
Anime and Manga
- In Ano Hana, Meiko/Menma and Naruko/Anaru seem to play the trope straight for Jintan — Menma is dressed in white and looks like a very sweet and cute kid, while Anaru's looks are heavily based on the gyaru subculture (painted nails, miniskirts, bleached hair). Personality wise, though, they're the opposite: Menma is free-spirited and kinda thoughtless, while Anaru is very Adorkable.
- In Neon Genesis Evangelion there's a huge debate about who's Betty and who's Veronica since Rei and Asuka present traits of both sides. Rei has a gentle disposition and reserved nature, but she's also bizarre, cold, and strangely unsettling. Fiery Redheaded foreigner Asuka has a forceful and aggressive personality, but is also seen as the more outgoing and human one.
- In the Princess Tutu anime, Fakir appears at first as a male Tsundere, and Mytho the Prince has a case of Chronic Hero Syndrome. They were respectively the Veronica and Betty to Ahiru's Archie Then Mytho's heart shard is tainted with the Crow's blood and he becomes evil and potentially violent, and Fakir is seen as the friend and confident who does everything he can to protect Ahiru.
- Ranma ½: Akane is an extremely violent Tsundere, rather popular at school and despite her tries has very few traditionally feminine traits. Shampoo is a Supreme Chef, works full-time in her grandma's restaurant, and can be almost kittenish when she's happy (pun intended). Also added is that she came from a lower-class setting than Akane, is a lot smarter than she looks, and is also multi-talented. She also pines after Ranma. However, Akane is very kind-hearted and nice when not being upset, and often stands up for others even if it brings her problems. And while Shampoo can cook and can be very demure around Ranma, but most of the time she's Tsundere bordering on Yandere and can be very manipulative and cruel, like with Mousse and sometimes to Ranma himself. Shampoo also has an exotic quality, and her sexiness is sometimes played up too, especially compared to Akane who is a tomboy who desperately attempts to be more feminine.
- The anime adaptation of Zero no Tsukaima has Louise and Siesta switch roles for the third season. As Saito grows more used to Louise's habits, his relationship with her normalizes somewhat culminating with their marriage at the end of the second season. Shortly thereafter the writers force Siesta to crank up the sex appeal to compensate because Status Quo Is God.
- In the Archie Comics, the Betty becomes a Veronica when she tries to murder Archie out of spite. For Veronica, despite having mistaken herself for a romantic novel heroine after a knock on the head, she never did such a thing, and thus gets the title of Betty in the trope namer for this kind of triangles.
- Lois Lane and Lana Lang have been switched the roles of Betty and Veronica to Superman in the course of the years.
Live Action Movies
- In Blood and Chocolate, this happens. The sweet human boyfriend, Aiden, has a case of Fantastic Racism and does a Face Heel Turn which leaves only the other Love Interest as a worthy pretendant for the heroine. Of course, it turns out that the remaining Love Interest (thanks to personal experience) can understand what the heroine is going through far more than she or the audience ever gave him credit for.
- Daniel Deronda may make this Older Than Radio. Mirah is Jewish, an outcast with an artistic and melancholy disposition, Gwendolene is charming, well-liked and christian. Gwendolene is also too self-involved, though in an understandable and harmful way, while Mirah is sweet and innocent.
- In Harry Potter, this happens with Severus Snape (initially Lily's unpopular best friend on the verge of becoming a Victorious Childhood Friend) and James Potter (initially a Jerk Jock whom she disapproves). She then not only discovers that James became a Lovable Jock because he Took a Level in Kindness, but painfully realizes that Severus is affected with Fantastic Racism.
- Made worse by how the second situation played out. Lily tried to help Severus after an almost Deadly Prank (in which the still-not-developed James did have a part), and not only he snaps at her, but he calls her racist epithets to her very face. It's implied that Lily was aware of Severus's racism but attempted to make him change his mind, but once he crossed the line like that, she decided to cut off the friendship for her own sake.
- Jane Austen loved writing novels where this occurs :
- In Pride and Prejudice, this happens to Elizabeth's love interests, subjectively.
- Mansfield Park has an interesting unmentioned objective variation for the heroine and antiheroine, a quietly depressed, meek andforgiving Love Martyr Woobie and a manipulative, charming-but-dangerous Gold Digger. Turns out the first becomes an Iron Woobie who won't let the others's mean preoccupations go against her morals and knows perfectly well that the treatment born by her gender is unfair, and the other falls in love, wangsts, and consider abandonning her ambitions and also losing integrity. The hero chooses the new Veronica, who throws a proto-feminist speech in his face, making the work Fair for Its Day.
- Moonlight has Kayla with Mason and Lucas. She sees Mason as a Nice Guy and Lucas as a less kind and harmless person. However, the readers can see from early on that Mason is a Manipulative Bastard who is insulting to his rival and tries to make Kayla drunk, while Lucas ignores him and is simply kind to her, but has intimidating manners. It must be acknowledged once Mason does a Face Heel Turn.
- The Summer I Turned Pretty trilogy by Jenny Han revolves around the heroine Belly's romances with the sons of her mother's best friend. In the beginning, Conrad was the aloof bad boy while Jeremiah was the Nice Guy. In the last book, Jeremiah has become a somewhat obnoxious frat boy who cheats on Belly. Meanwhile, Conrad is mature and studious (and also gets the girl at the end.) Belly only saw them on family vacations in the summer so she's unsure if they (especially Jeremiah) were always like that and she never saw it or if they actually changed.
- Twilight has Jacob and Edward, reaching It Was His Sled status. In book 1, they are respectively the kind younger friend and someone who was Maddened Into Misanthropy by his Dark and Troubled Past and may and may not be a case of "I Am A Humanitarian". But in book 2, Jacob becomes a violent and confident muscular hunk who has Hair-Trigger Temper and Crazy Jealous Guy tendancies, and Edward is the reliable boyfriend who ends up leaving her for what he summarizes in the end as I Want My Beloved to Be Happy.
- In The Age Of Innocence, May is Newland's conventional blonde "good girl" fiancee, while Ellen is the exotic and individualistic dark-haired family reprobate. May, however, is revealed to have a highly manipulative side, while Ellen honestly loves him, and is more suited to him in terms of tastes and personality. Possibly a deconstruction of the Betty and Veronica trope.
Live Action TV
- In The Dark Knight Rises, it happens between Selina Kyle and Miranda Tate, Bruce Wayne's other Love Interest. Miranda is a sweet clean energy champion, Selina is a burglar. The latter saves him despite having been The Mole, the other is The Man Behind the Man.
- The twist in Jim Carrey's The Mask. The mousy coworker is actually a spy for the villain, the seemingly exotic dame he met at a club is actually much more centered than she first appeared.
- Glee apparently has Rachel as Betty and Quinn as Veronica to Finn's Archie. This is subverted in the episode "Original Songs," when Quinn explains to Rachel that, however things might appear, she, Quinn, is actually the girl-next-door whom Finn will end up settling for, and Rachel is really the unattainable fantasy dream-girl.
- Happens to Santana. She's usually the Veronica in a love triangle, but whenever Brittany is concerned, she instantly becomes the Betty.
- In the BBC's Robin Hood series, Marian had the choice between Robin and Guy, who were quickly revealed to be more than they first appeared. Guy is conservative and law-abiding (Betty) but also dangerous and a torturer (Veronica), whereas Robin was an outlaw and a thief (Veronica) but also Marian's childhood sweetheart, Robin Hood, and much more in love than he first appeared (Betty).
- It can also be argued to happen between Isabella and Kate for Robin. The first may be the seductive artistocratic and morally ambiguous antagonist and Angry Sheriff's Beautiful Sister and Kate the Farm Girl who joined the outlaws, but Isabella is a Tragic Villain who tries to get rid of her rival by diminuishing Robin's trust in her... while the Farm Girl simply tries to kill the noble-born rival. Unlike Isabella, Kate didn't have the excuse of growing paranoid due to years of abuse by a sadistic husband, so the line is at least blurred.
- In The Secret Circle, the live-action adaptation of the book series, Cassie initially appears to be a timid and shy Girl Next Door. For Diana, she is a confident and mature witch. As the series progresses, Cassie becomes more extroverted, ambitious, and willing to use her dark magic, but Diana grows more isolated and more cautious about the consequences of their actions. The point is driven home when Diana learns that she has dark magic as well. She makes it very clear that she will not be as reckless with it as Cassie is. This is in contrast to their initial characterizations, Cassie desiring to stay away from the circle, and Diana to embrace their birthright as witches. Adam's interests tend towards which girl is more The Veronica at any given time. He is initially dating Diana, (she is a Victorious Childhood Friend), they break up as the personality shift starts, and he starts dating Cassie a few episodes later.
- It happened in True Blood, after Erik's amnesia (which ended up turning him into a Man Child, and then into something closer from a Nice Guy) and Bill's acquisition of the title of King (which ended up making him a powerful authoritative villain). The first had blond hair all along, and the second has brown hair from the beginning, so they both ended up filling their new function better than before.
- The Vampire Diaries has the switch take place over the third and fourth seasons between Stefan and Damon, previously Betty and Veronica, respectively. Damon not only starts showing more of his humanity to his love interest but also becomes the un-judgmental, reliable friend to Elena who "like[s] her either way" after she has been turned into a vampire and murdered Connor; all the while Stefan switches off his humanity and becomes the Ripper of Monterrey once again, and later goes to the extreme of risking Jeremy's life and secretly allying with Klaus in order to make Vampire!Elena the person he wants her to be. Elena shows the tendency to prefer Betty, starting off the series being with the sweet, caring Stefan and later breaking up with him to be with Damon.
- The versions of the myth of the knight Pelleas (from the Arthurian legend) sometimes feature this. Pelleas falls in love with the lady Ettarde. She then pretends to reciprocate in order to have him win something for her in a tournament. She pushes him away when she has it, but he thinks it is all a test and comes to visit her every day. Growing annoyed, she puts him in her gaol and frees him every day. Pelleas then meets Gawain, who decides to help him by visiting Ettarde and later opening the gates, but Gawain falls in love with her, she reciprocates, and he does not follow his vow and Pelleas discovers it. Then, the different versions of the myth diverge:
- Either Pelleas goes in his tent, becomes depressed, and is saved by a sweet, ethereal-looking Lady of the Lake, Elaine, who reveals that she has very powerful magical powers (and a lot of Hidden Depths when she curses who she believes to be her rival, while Pelleas has fallen in love with her himself and forgotten Ettarde), Ettarde finds out Gawain's original plan and, furious with him, regrets Pelleas.
- ... or Pelleas grows mad with rage, and becomes the Red Knight, devoted to prove the hypocrisy of Arthur's court.
- For Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, Penny has Dr. Horrible, the sweet and troubled Mad Scientist with golden hair, and Captain Hammer, the Jerkass Handsome Lech Dumb Muscle Flying Brick Heteronormative Crusader (goes into another room, cooks a sandwitch, and eats it as the insults are detailed further) Knight Templar. Dr. Horrible becomes a straight-up villain and Hammer remains his extreme and offensive but well-meaning self.
- Not a surprise given the source material, but, for Lizzie in The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, Wickham is The Woobie, The Charmer and a Lovable Jock with blond hair whose only bad side is being a Serial Romeo and a Temporary Love Interest who knew she never expected the romance to become serious anyway, and Darcy is the Tall, Dark and Snarky Stalker with a Crush with a terrible case of Small Name, Big Ego, Idle Rich and Card-Carrying Villain. The audience knows Wickham is a Hypocrite Manipulative Bastard who took advantage of her need of companionship in difficult times, and Darcy is a well-meaning Workaholic with a case of No Social Skills, The Proud Elite, Big Brother Instinct and Adorkable.
- The Legend Of Korra has Korra and Asami in a Love Triangle for Mako and a lot of the traits usually associated with each side are swapped around. Asami is sweet and gentle and Mako feels more comfortable around her, but she's the richer, more traditionally beautiful one. Korra is much more violent and tends to crash with Mako, but she is naive and from the country (well, Southern Water Tribe). Eventually Mako becomes closer to Korra and his relationship with Asami becomes sour and finally falls apart after she finds out Mako and Korra kissed behind her back.