->'''Socrates:''' Ya know, Calvin, that line has been used so many times now, it's not even ''mildly'' threatening anymore.\\
'''Andy:''' Yeah, it actually just took all the drama out. It's like having FiveFiveFive for a phone number.
-->--''Fanfic/CalvinAndHobbesTheSeries'', [[Recap/CalvinAndHobbesTheSeriesS3TVM2Thunderstorm "Thunderstorm"]] (on ImYourWorstNightmare)

TropesAreTools, but some have aged better than others.

Over the course of time, a trope may be overused, misused, opposed, [[TropeBreaker made obsolete]], [[DeaderThanDisco out of fashion]], {{subverted|Trope}} on many notable occasions, or just end up being [[PetPeeveTrope widely disliked]]. Eventually, a trope may reach the point where it becomes one which nobody should dare use ''seriously'' and only belongs in parody, satire, homage or pastiche. Often, if one of these is used straight, [[TheUntwist people will assume]] it's a RedHerring.

In some cases, a trope may be discredited due to changes in our knowledge of history or science. Use of the trope in fiction may change to reflect this. See the TimeMarchesOn index.

# Just because a trope is discredited does not necessarily mean it is not TruthInTelevision, or that it's necessarily a ForgottenTrope.
# This is not bad writing because the writing itself is bad, but because the writer doesn't know its audience. After all, [[TropesAreTools Tropes Are Not Bad]].
# Just because a trope is not TruthInTelevision does not mean it is discredited.

OmnipresentTropes are immune to being discredited, mostly because those tropes are too natural to the medium of storytelling to ever be considered tired cliches. UndeadHorseTrope describes tropes that have been subverted and parodied dozens of times, but aren't ''quite'' discredited.

See also:
* DeadHorseTrope, where subversions or parodies outnumber straight use in recent works.
* ForgottenTrope, which describes tropes that aren't used in recent works at all; they may have been considered Discredited Tropes years ago, or just fell from use for other reasons.

Compare DiscreditedMeme.

!!Examples and Tropes:


[[folder: A-M]]
* TheAggressiveDrugDealer: This is ''not'' how the majority of drug dealers operate in RealLife - primarily because most who are not TheMentallyDisturbed beyond common sense and reason or amped up on their own product want to do two things: make a profit and avoid arrests/investigation. Aggressive sales tactics aimed at kids would fail on both counts. Most RealLife dealers are well aware they are selling a highly illegal product and have some degree of discretion in doing so, and usually their customers are ''already sold on the product,'' since introductions usually happen between peers. The person most likely to give someone their first dose of a drug is not an aggressive "do it or else" dealer - it's a friend.
* AlliterativeName: A trope popularized by StanLee so that he could remember all these characters he co-created. It's been taken to the point of parody.
* AllJustADream: Too often abused as a DeusExMachina / {{Stock Epileptic Tree|s}}.
* AllGaysArePedophiles: [[OnceAcceptableTargets Formerly a widespread stereotype]] -- and a major reason homosexuality has been demonized for so long -- ''NO ONE'' with any credibility believes this anymore, to say nothing of the [[UnfortunateImplications homophobic undertones]].
* AllWomenArePrudes: Since sexual attitudes have become more relaxed, nobody plays this straight.
* AnalProbing: Still survives in some comedic settings or jokes, but the concept of TheGrays or LittleGreenMen or other space aliens engaging in this has become so discredited that the ''only'' way to use it is parody or a subversion. It also has the FridgeHorror of being a rape joke, unless you are using the subversion of someone actively seeking it.
* AwardBaitSong: Has been slowly vanishing since its peak in TheNineties. Revised rules in the AcademyAwards have also ensured that [[TropeBreaker they're no longer award bait]].
* BarbaricBully: Heightened school security in the post-Columbine era means that beating a kid up in a crowded school hallway usually comes with consequences. Not to mention that the advent of cyberbullying and the recent rash of bully-related suicides proves that a good deal of bullying is psychological rather than physical (and that psychological bullying can be just as harmful as physical bullying). It is not discredited in British works due to ValuesDissonance, and the fact that British society sees physical bullying as a major topical issue.
* BasementDweller: The economic hard times of [[TheNewTens the 2010s]] have convinced a steadily increasing amount of young people to live with their parents, though this is still mainly due to financial desperation.
* TheBermudaTriangle: No matter what anyone wants to say about RealLife ships and planes that have disappeared in the region, aliens, Cthulhu, dimensional portals, Atlantis, etc. are '''NOT''' behind any of it. The incidence of RealLife disappearances in the area is no higher or lower than any other part of the ocean that has similar size, weather, and maritime traffic.
* BedsheetGhost: A hopelessly outdated cliche of a ghost appearance that is very difficult to play straight now.
* BlackHelicopter: [[AttackDrone Drones]] have made them obsolete and are more believable.
* BookBurning: Made obsolete as of the 1990s-2000s with the advent of [[TechMarchesOn multiple methods of duplicating and spreading information electronically]]. Forced deletion of information, conspiracies to limit its release, [[{{Demonization}} slandering those who release information]] and questioning their motives/veracity with AstroTurf, [[BannedInChina banning by region]], arrests and threats to those who release information, and other methods of censorship and suppression are far more common (and even [[StreisandEffect those are of limited success]].
* {{Bowdlerize}}: The ability to release the uncensored version of almost anything via the internet/via DVD deleted scenes/via other means has made serious attempts to do this (outside of children's media and very religious/conservative locales) almost laughable, as everyone who wants to can easily find the "real" version.
* BrainFever: A ForgottenTrope, of an "illness" that existed before [[ScienceMarchesOn better understanding of the human brain]] and [[TechnologyMarchesOn better imaging of the human brain.]] There are infections of the brain (encephalitis, meningitis, rabies), and there are psychological and physiological conditions (post-traumatic stress disorder, catatonic states, panic attacks) but all have different causes, different symptoms, and far different outcomes.
* {{Brainwashed}}: Is TruthInTelevision and does happen on a quite regular basis, but many means of doing so in fiction have been very discredited (hypnosis, drugs/a drug as sole means, magic). Realistic portrayals focus on MoreThanMindControl, torture and other forms of UsefulNotes/{{abuse}}, StockholmSyndrome, and the DirtySocialTricks, as that is how ''actual'' brainwashing is accomplished. However, it is still used in some plots concerning ChurchofHappyology.
* BritishRoyalGuards: Never used for anything other than comedic effect, but nowadays the once common gags involving a guard's effort to remain still under immense pressure have been replaced with ones where [[SubvertedTrope voluntary movement]] on the guard's part is observed, side-stepping more commonplace expectations.
* ButNotTooWhite: Becoming increasingly less common in visual media, thanks to tanned skin no longer being the ''de facto'' beauty standard that it once was. Sex symbols in TheNewTens like Creator/RobertPattinson, Creator/BenedictCumberbatch, Creator/ZooeyDeschanel and Creator/ChristinaHendricks have gradually challenged the idea that fair skin is something to be ashamed of.
* TheCallsAreComingFromInsideTheHouse: Based on a myth about analog land lines (see the trope page), plus it's not that scary or unusual anymore with the [[TechMarchesOn omnipresence of cell phones]].
* CareerVersusFamily: Working moms are quite common, especially as the cost of raising children to adulthood increases.
* CareerVersusMan: It is entirely possible to have both; these days, a woman is not expected to give up her career when she gets married.
* CatchYourDeathOfCold (still alive and well in Japanese and possibly other East Asian media, though)
* CementShoes: It's much more efficient (from both a filming and story perspective) to have the crooks just shoot the guy or bash his head in and go on their way. The victim being suddenly shot also has more shock value.
* ChocolateFrostedSugarBombs: Modern children's cereals are made with much more of an eye towards nutrition, thanks to backlash regarding marketing junk food to kids.
* TheChosenOne: Has largely fallen out of favor due to how overused and cliche it is.
* ChristmasCake: Along with its Western variant, the OldMaid, it's not quite [[ForgottenTrope gone from consciousness]], but it is on its way out, thanks to changing attitudes about the role of women in society, and increased education for girls.
* CoincidentalBroadcast
* CureYourGays: [[SocietyMarchesOn Now that it's understood]] that "conversion therapy" and other attempts to "cure" non-heterosexual orientations are ''at best'' worthless and useless and fraudulent and at worst dangerous to life and health, playing this straight is [[ValuesDissonance seen as backward]] and [[UnfortunateImplications offensive]].
* CutAndPasteNote: In modern fiction, due to the prevalence of more convenient and harder to trace forms of anonymous communication. If used in any sort of forensic drama, you can bet the {{CSI}}s will admonish the culprit as an amateur and get damning evidence off the note.
* CutPhoneLines: Largely discredited in any story set after the widespread adoption of cell/mobile phones.
* DastardlyWhiplash: A [[CardCarryingVillain cardboard stereotype]], [[ObviouslyEvil clear-cut villain]] used in vaudeville and stage melodramas [[note]] but, [[DeadUnicornTrope contrary to popular belief]], ''not'' in silent film, where the only significant use was in ''The Perils of Pauline'', and even that example [[UnbuiltTrope is quite different from later parodies.]][[/note]] that got so ridiculously overused, that it became impossible to take seriously, and thus became extremely ripe for parody in cartoons. As such, this trope has almost never been played straight since, and when it does occasionally pop up, it's used as fodder for a quick villain gag or for sheer camp value (e.g. Dick Dastardly from WackyRaces, Snidely Whiplash from DudleyDoRight, Oil Can Harry from MightyMouse)--in fact, the reason people even remember this trope is often ''because'' [[DeadHorseTrope of how often the cliche has been parodied.]]
* DeadPetSketch: Except in parodies, and even then, not taken seriously.
* DeclarativeFinger: Often used by the authors to imply that the character doing so is just trying to come across as profound, which in turn is used to imply that the character is actually saying something NON-profound.
* DigitalPiracyIsEvil: Despite [[UndeadHorseTrope still lingering today]], companies have ultimately realized that the war against piracy is a [[HopelessWar lost cause]], and have taken incentive to work around it instead. More recently they have been pushing a new bill (s.978, Protect IP, SOPA) to put an end to piracy forever, although all attempts so far have failed. Although in the United Kingdom, the Digital Economy Bill keeps this as an UndeadHorseTrope due to ValuesDissonance.
* DinnerWithTheBoss: Discredited around TheSeventies to TheEighties in the UnitedStates. Most if not all work-related/work networking parties/meetings/similar, anywhere in the world, are at restaurants, bars, or other public event locations, or held at the house of the boss/senior staff rather than rank-and-file employees. In Europe and Japan (as well as Latin America and most of Asia) this was how things were all along for the most part.
* DiplomaticImpunity: Due to several TruthInTelevision incidents that led to RippedFromTheHeadlines, most countries, after around TheNineties, [[SocietyMarchesOn created ways of at least removing severely criminal or dangerous diplomatic staff.]]
* {{Disaster Movie}}s involving airplanes - since ''{{Airplane}}'' came out, no-one could possibly take one seriously. [[{{United93}} Unless it was based on a true story]]. One contemporary airplane disaster movie tried to play itself straight for the first part of its production process - then someone realized there were [[Film/SnakesOnAPlane snakes on the plane.]]
* DivorceAssetsConflict: Still occasionally happens, but with ''most'' couples (especially those where large amounts of wealth are involved on one or both sides) having legally binding prenuptial agreements, far less likely to happen in RealLife post TheNineties, and therefore much less realistic without some explanation as to why there was no prenup.
* DivorceRequiresDeath: In Western society, at least, it doesn't.
* DoesThisMakeMeLookFat:
** You see this every day, so it's not really a plot device.
** There's also the common variant of the trope, "Does this make my butt look big?". Because of evolving beauty standards in the 21st century, the implication that a woman has a big butt is a lot less likely to be considered an insult than it once was.
* DramaticSlip
* DrFeelgood: They still exist, but are far more discreet because, due to legal crackdowns and the like, blatant and open ones often find themselves arrested, stripped of medical licensing, sued, or all of the above.
* DrunkenMontage: Except when it's PlayedForLaughs.
* DumbAndDrummer: With ''quite a few'' very intellectual drummers existing in RealLife, the rise of Drum And Bass, dubstep, and some ''very'' technically complex forms of HeavyMetal, all of which require musical skill and competency and some degree of intelligence - alongside the trope becoming a DiscreditedMeme to some degree from simple overuse - it's become a cliche. Subverting it with having the stupidity be ObfuscatingStupidity or temporary due to AlcoholInducedIdiocy or a manic episode or the like is far more believable, ''especially'' if the band you're depicting is supposed to be expert-level musicians.
* DyingDream: Too often abused as a DeusExMachina, except also common as an overused DownerEnding.
* [[ValleyGirl Essex Girl]]: We are in the age of ''TheOnlyWayIsEssex'' but the trope itself is pretty much discredited nowadays. The [[FunWithAcronyms WIGWAG]](''Wig''an ''Wa''lkden Girl, alternately ''Wig''an ''Wa''rrington Girl) [a slightly higher social demographic, as Wigan and Walkden are fairly affluent neighborhoods] - [[SocietyMarchesOn the older trope is now gone]]; it only survives in ''TheOnlyWayIsEssex'' due to the legacy of the GrandfatherClause. The trope itself in general isn't obsolete, but the Essex version is. Audience reactions on this are mixed, to say the least.
* EverybodySmokes: The global smoking rate (as measured by admitted daily smokers) as of TheNewTens rests around 25 to 30 percent, with a far lower percentage (around 19 to 25 percent) in most Western First World nations, due to aggressive education campaigns about the dangers of tobacco, stricter regulation of its use and sale and promotion, and free or low-cost quitting assistance for smokers. Some populations (and some nations/regions/cities) have larger percentages of smokers, but the trope is ''entirely'' discredited anywhere outside of those specific exceptions after TheNineties.
* FlashbackStares: Outside of comedies this is rarely used purely because it looks so silly, breaking any dramatic tension.
* FlushingToiletScreamingShower: Becoming one because [[TechnologyMarchesOn newer buildings are designed with this trope in mind]] so it's harder to pull off.
* FollowThatCar
* ForeignLookingFont: Quite a few of them are seen as racist. Chop Suey, Lithos and Neuland all are seen as racist or racialized, for example, especially when used in certain contexts or to make something seem "exotic."
* TheGenerationGap has pretty much become this, with Generations X and Y becoming parents and today's children growing up in an unusually similar cultural landscape to the one their parents grew up in. Fortunately, recent shows like ''Series/ModernFamily'' and ''TwoAndAHalfMen'' have realized this, and thus, the trope has been gradually phased out of television and movies during the past decade-and-a-half or so. Today, it's relegated mostly to parody, although even ''that'' is becoming [[DeadHorseTrope old hat]].
* GirlsHaveCooties: Unless you are aiming at a VERY young audience, using this trope will make you a laughingstock, and even when shown is generally to teach a moral about how is not true at all.
* GISSyndrome: Always mocked, PlayedForLaughs, or derided as lazy. Some webcomics like {{Webcomic/Homestuck}}, ''Webcomic/TwistedKaijuTheater'', or ''Webcomic/AlienLovesPredator'' can get away with it, but only because of the GrandfatherClause and simple practicality issues.
* GiveGeeksAChance: Due to [[ValuesDissonance modern-day attitudes]] towards relationships, it's harder to take seriously anymore. If it ''is'' used, expect AnAesop as well.
** The mainstreaming of nerd culture such as ''TheBigBangTheory'' has rendered it [[NerdsAreSexy more or less obsolete]], as there's no longer anything especially remarkable about a self-proclaimed "nerd" having a fulfilling love life.
* HighSchoolRocks: Despite being a popular trope beginning in the 70s, and continuing on into the 90s (particularly in kid shows), is rarely played straight anymore. Now that shows like ''Series/FreaksAndGeeks'' and ''Series/MySoCalledLife'', not to mention movies like ''Film/{{Superbad}}'' and (to a lesser extent) ''Film/DazedAndConfused'', have subverted it into oblivion, it's almost impossible to take this trope seriously anymore. ''WaterlooRoad'' is the show that made it become this way.
* HenpeckedHusband: As Many DomesticAbuse cases start to have more gender neutrality be added to them, this type of relationship is seen as either unrealistic or [[UnfortunateImplications horrifying]]. Many sitcoms still use them, however, as do animé, manga and similar.
* HollywoodThin: On it's way to becoming this, thanks to increasing backlash against media that pressures women and men to be as thin/buff as possible. Hollywood in particular is facing anger over it's perceived encouragement of unhealthy life-styles that revolve around being the size of twig. Ironically it's deliberate counterpart, RealWomenHaveCurves, may not be far behind it, as it's also receiving backlash for promoting the equally unhealthy ideas that people who are thin are somehow inferior to those who aren't and that being overweight is better than taking care of your body.
* HystericalWoman: Not only a DoubleStandard; a tired cliché.
* InAWorld: The film trailer blurb immortalized by the late Creator/DonLaFontaine is heading in this direction.
* InnocentInnuendo: These days, audience reactions tend not to be "whoa, are they doing it?", but "okay, what's ''really'' going on?"
* IsThereADoctorInTheHouse: Now, someone would just ask someone to call EmergencyServices. Especially since, due to CripplingOverspecialization, a doctor present might not even be able to ''help'' in any meaningful way (e.g. a psychiatrist or a dentist won't likely be able to do any more for someone having a heart attack or who just got hurt in an accident than a non-doctor would)
* ItsQuietTooQuiet: Still applicable in a few very rare instances (tornadoes, total loss of power), but most people in those circumstances are probably more ''OhCrap'' than "it's too quiet..."
* IWantSong: This became discredited for a while after Disney and its competitors milked the Broadway musical cartoon formula for all it was worth -- the makers of ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory'' even intentionally avoided this, in order to distinguish it from those films. That said, there's enough nostalgia left for it now to allow it to return in recent films like ''Disney/ThePrincessAndTheFrog'', but it's nowhere near as prevalent as it was in the past.
* {{Kawaiiko}}: Now that we're in the age of salarymen, Japanese sex dolls (as mentioned by Justin Lee Collins) and Japanese supermodels like Leah Dizon, this trope is ''very'' much now no longer able to be played straight. British magazine ''Take A Break'' treated it as TheNewRockAndRoll, but they were TwoDecadesBehind - the kawaii fad is [[DeaderThanDisco known for its flaws and is a joke nowadays]].
* KarmicRape: Only in a select ''very'' few situations is this not thoroughly discredited (e.g. UsefulNotes/AdolfHitler in a BlackComedy, pedophiles), and even ''there'' it carries severe ValuesDissonance. It is also more common in manga and anime than western works, due to cultural differences.
* KidSidekick: While very popular during the Golden and Silver Age of Comics, nowadays it's rarely used because the kid sidekick has a tendency to become both TheScrappy and TheLoad. There's also the desire nowadays to avoid [[UnfortunateImplications the implied moral]] [[FamilyUnfriendlyAesop that it's alright to put kids in mortal danger]]. In grandfathered cases like {{ComicBook/Robin}} or ComicBook/BuckyBarnes, the trope is either justified by having the kid putting themselves on the streets and the older hero is their mentor/guardian keeping them from getting badly hurt, or deconstructed by having the kid be a ruthless ChildSoldier completely unlike the flashy TagalongKid expected. Also worth noting is that the premiere of Spider-Man in the 60s popularized the concept of the kid being their own independent superhero, and a number of former sidekicks like [[Franchise/TheFlash Wally West]] and Bucky Barnes have since become adults and taken the title of their former mentor.
* {{Leprechaun}}: Only in Ireland itself though, not in America or elsewhere.
* [[DrowningMySorrows Leave the bottle!]]: You won't find this in any modern bar or tavern. It's against modern ABC laws.
* LittleGreenMen: TheGrays have made them obsolete.
* LoveAtFirstSight: Usually ends with finding out the object isn't really the right person for you after all, nowadays.
* LovePotion: Generally recognized as a form of DateRape if marriage/sexual contact results from its use.
* MachoDisasterExpedition: The inherent sexism against both genders when using this trope - namely, that men are incompetent sexist morons, and that [[StayInTheKitchen a woman is naturally better at keeping house, even if it's in the wilderness]] - have made using this trope [[UnfortunateImplications uncomfortable]].
* ManInABikini: It is still [[PlayingWithATrope played straight]], but one use of it is discredited; it is no longer [[PlayedForLaughs used as a source of comedy nowadays]]. Well, ''except'' for TeenIdol shows like ''Series/HannahMontana'' and ''Series/{{iCarly}}''. Main usage is for {{Very Special Episode}}s or to promote AnAesop on tolerating crossdressers.
* MarsAndVenusGenderContrast: Not played straight except in some romantic comedies, and even then it's considered by most to be a tired cliche.
* MascotWithAttitude: Started with poorly made [[FollowTheLeader copycats]] of ''SonicTheHedgehog'', the TropeCodifier, and solidified by Sonic's gradual decline. As of recently, Sonic is the only prominent example of this trope, obviously due to him [[GrandfatherClause being the template for it in the first place.]]
* MayanDoomsday: December 21, 2012 is in the past now, and suffice to say, the world and civilization in general remain intact. It's hard to imagine any new works taking this trope seriously with that in mind.
* MedleyOverture: With theatre orchestras getting smaller and audiences and directors more impatient for shows to start, full-scale overtures have been relegated mostly to revivals o classic shows and throwbacks set in the 1920s or 1930s.
* MenCantKeepHouse: Outdated and untrue these days, with the advent of stay-at-home dads.
* MillenniumBug: The year 2000 passed long ago and needless to say the apocalypse didn't happen. Back in the late 90s this was often used as a semi-plausible (at least for people not knowledgeable in computers) doomsday cause in fiction. Nowadays it's only ever brought up to mock people for being so stupid as to get in a panic over the thing, like other attempts to predict the apocalypse like the Doomsday Clock.
* MonsterCloset: In first-person shooters. Present in shooters in mid 1990s to early 2000s but mainly replaced by offscreen or onscreen spawning.
* MurderSimulators: The theory that video games cause anyone who plays them to become a psychopath has been proven (by time, if nothing else) to be patently untrue. Anti-gaming also took a few huge blows in TheNewTens, with the Supreme Court declaring that video games are protected free speech in the United States, and many anti-gaming politicians leaving office in Australia, along with the establishment of an R18+ rating in that country. Couple that with the generation that grew up with video games now having children of their own, and it's fair to say that any media that still tries to paint video games with this trope will be met with eye-rolling and mockery.

[[folder: N-Z]]
* NapoleonDelusion: Because after a certain point in time, delusional people wouldn't know who Napoleon is unless they were history buffs/history majors. Also, in RealLife, AGodAmI and the belief that one is seriously connected to, harassed/persecuted by, or actually is a celebrity or the President of the United States are more common delusions, as is the possibly-''not''-delusional belief (depending on the person and their activities - there have actually been ''real'' cases of said harassment/persecution) that one is being harassed/persecuted by authorities, a conspiracy, or the like.
* TheNativesAreRestless: This isn't the age of colonialism anymore. It still pops up in fantasy and science fiction settings where colonialism can exist, but even then, it's more likely to be used for humour.
* NinetiesAntiHero: Except in VideoGames, a medium where it seems to work better than comic books.
* NotAllowedToGrowUp: Still largely used and accepted in animation, comics and video games, but discredited in live action media.
* OfficerOHara: There are still Irish-American cops in entertainment, but they tend to be [[ShownTheirWork less stereotypical]]. The whimsy and the just-off-the-boat accent tend to only be used straight in HistoricalFiction these days.
* OneBulletAtATime: Subjective; was originally a technical limitation, but can still be enforced for gameplay reasons (e.g. prevent some forms of SpamAttack).
* OpeningNarration: During the TitleSequence, this usually gave the premise of the series. Today, writers prefer to ShowDontTell. It's still played straight in some MedicalDrama or PoliceProcedural series, occasionally in sci-fi, and also used in some comedies (HowIMetYourMother, MalcolmInTheMiddle, {{Scrubs}}...)
** On the other hand, PreviouslyOn still hasn't disappeared, even though it has been made less necessary by such new technologies as [=DVDs=], [=YouTube=], and TiVo (it is still useful when the previous action took place maybe ten or twenty episodes ago).
** One of the more notable instances of it being used in 2014 is the opening narration of ''Forever'': Dr. Henry Morgan explains to the viewer the premise (200 years ago he started reviving naked in a body of water after being killed) and then [[LampshadeHanging hangs a lampshade on it]] "And now you know as much about this as I do."
* OpeningScroll: Today, the general stance is that you should just ShowDontTell. May occasionally pop up as an homage to one of the [[Franchise/StarWars most famous examples]].
* The {{Padding}} technique used in British adventure serials (''Series/DoctorWho'' and ''Series/BlakesSeven'' being the two most notorious abusers) of having the hero get captured at the end of one part ({{Cliffhanger}}), spend the next episode escaping and get captured at the end of ''that'' episode [[DiabolusExMachina by the same people]] ({{Cliffhanger}}). The fact that the mainstream, cliffhanger-laden adventure serial is a dead format, how the age of just shoving an episode out in a week ([[TheyJustDidntCare "so just write some stuff where everyone's running about to fill up minutes, who cares if it's good"]]) is gone forever thanks to the increased complexity of special effects, and the fact that shows like this tend to be aimed at cult audiences who are very sensitive to this kind of plotting mean that this is never done nowadays, and if it does show up it's usually in spoofs.
* PhoneTraceRace: Still used on occasion by very [[http://www.cracked.com/article_19160_8-scenes-that-prove-hollywood-doesnt-get-technology.html dense Hollywood hacks,]] but with caller ID, the popularity of shows like 24 which have mostly ditched this trope, and a general paranoia about Google and Facebook tracking your every move, writers nowadays tend to err on the side of the FBI/NSA/CIA being ''too'' good at tracking your every move.
* PoorMansPorn: TheInternetIsForPorn, so you don't need to settle for the Victoria's Secret catalog anymore.
* ProlongedPrologue: Often seen in fantasy novels. They give a lot of backstory on a world that the reader hasn't read enough of to care about yet. Most publishers say ShowDontTell and let the reader learn about the world through the eyes of the characters.
* QueerPeopleAreFunny: Often seen as homophobic nowadays.
* QuicksandSucks: Except in video games. Some terrain ''does'' do this in RealLife - the {{squick}}iest example is liquid manure, but snow in an avalanche and grain (as in a grain bin) are also notorious for "swallowing up" and killing people who unfortunately fall onto it. You actually have far more of a chance surviving quicksand than either liquid manure, an avalanche, or grain - because both of the latter are ''far'' easier to sink into beyond the point of saving oneself.
* RandomEncounters: Originally required by technical limitations, but rarely seen now consoles have the power to render enemies in the overworld (''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' being a notable exception via the GrandfatherClause).
* RapeAndSwitch: The UnfortunateImplications of the trope (e.g. either that gay people can be made straight via rape, OR that LGBTQ people "recruit" by sexual abuse and rape, or in some cases ''both''), as well as [[SocietyMarchesOn greater understanding]] have made this trope ''very'' discredited and disfavored in most works made after TheNewTens. The only place it remains is (usually less well-written) FanFic, where the "victim falls for rapist" variant of it will make appearances.
* RapePortrayedAsRedemption: Absolutely discredited (and many of its past depictions have tied into the trope directly above, which ''really'' has not made them age well). The ''only'' way this could be played with any kind of sensitivity toward the victims of rape or in anything but the darkest of BlackComedy is a variant with the ''rapist'' seeing rape as the "rock bottom moment" of his life and being DrivenToSuicide or becoming TheAtoner or something similar.
* RedAndWhiteComedyPoster: Very common in the TurnOfTheMillennium, but rarely seen in TheNewTens, due to an association with movies that are utter crap.
* RevengeOfTheSequel: An overused stock sequel title, especially for horror movies.
* {{Rotoscoping}}: Derided as a lazy, poor substitute for actual animation by both animators and critics (thanks in part to [[UncannyValley another trope it inevitably invokes]]), it is almost never used in modern hand-drawn animation, let alone without irony. It's more modern equivalent, MotionCapture, is still used in CGI, but often to equal derision.
* SaidBookism: In these days, it's often considered redundant, and generally considered a very obvious hallmark of amateur or inexperienced writers.
* SamusIsAGirl: Overused and now the revealation that a girl can be as strong and badass as men is no longer subversive.
* SantaClaus Tropes: Santa has become such a commercial icon of Christmas and as such overexposed via countless Christmas specials and merchandise, that it is pretty much impossible to play any trope related to him straight now, unless you have a really young audience in mind or have no self-respect for yourself as a storyteller.
* TheSavageIndian: Still pops up sometimes but has mostly been replaced by the NobleSavage and the MagicalNativeAmerican.
* ScoobyDooHoax: After being abused by the original ''Scooby Doo'' and other Hanna Barbara cartoons, this is ''never'' played straight anywhere now. Even actual ''Scooby Doo'' cartoons make a point out of subverting, playing with, mocking, or outright deconstructing this trope.
* TheScream: Almost universally PlayedForLaughs nowadays. In modern media, a BigNo is preferred, or, if the media's classification allows for it, an AtomicFBomb or ClusterFBomb.
* [[ScreamerPrank Screamers]] have received two major blows over the Internet's history. Initially, when flash movies and games were still the norm, there were no clear distinctions between screamers and legitimate pages, creating a minefield for fearful site goers; this meant less traffic for sites like [=FunnyJunk=] and [=WinterWorld=]. Later, with [[Website/YouTube the advent of video over flash files]], viewers were able to scroll to the end of the video to see if any suspicions were confirmed, removing all suspense and [[TropeBreaker defeating the purpose of screamers]]. [[EvolvingTrope They have since been replaced by]] [[BaitAndSwitch the trap video]], which puts the scare at the ''beginning'' of the video, and aims not to make individuals jump, but [[{{Troll}} to cause outrage within specific audiences]]. Furthermore, they've also been overshadowed by {{Rickroll}}s as the Internet's prank of choice.
* The idea of SexDrugsAndRockAndRoll seems to have more-or-less fallen by the wayside. This is probably due mostly to the vast number of drug-related deaths and rehab stints among various rock musicians in the 60s, 70s and 80s (JimiHendrix, [[MotleyCrue Nikki Sixx]], OzzyOsbourne, etc.). However, other factors include the extensive anti-drug campaigning of the 80s, the AIDS scare mostly rendering the concept of "Free Love" obsolete, and the Grunge movement of the early 90s shifting the focus of rock away from glorified sex and drug use. Granted, sex and drugs still exist in the music business. But most of the musicians who engage in such activities, at least in Western mainstream pop and country music, are far more secretive and openly ambivalent towards them than before.
** On the other hand, [[ElectronicDanceMusic EDM and related festival culture]] is fairly open about it, as are some sections of HipHop and rap, outlaw country, and underground music of various sorts. Japanese VisualKei keeps things more secretive, but SexDrugsAndRockAndRoll is still a frequent trope there if you look beyond the "official," and alcohol abuse and smoking are quite open there.
* SexEqualsLove: Because most people have realized it doesn't in quite a few cases. Also carries ''very'' UnfortunateImplications regarding forced sex/sexual assault/rape.
* ShotgunWedding: A combination of greater availability of contraception and a reduced stigma of single motherhood make this trope seem very dated today. If a woman does get pregnant, a couple doesn't have to get married, but the father is expected to provide some form of support.
* ShrinkRay: Due to ScienceMarchesOn, this is now limited to more-or-less humorous works.
* SmallAnnoyingCreature: Rarely shows up anymore except as parody.
* SmokingIsCool[=/=]SmokingIsGlamorous: [[ValuesDissonance Changing attitudes]] towards smoking have deemed these tropes in bad taste, if not [[DoNotDoThisCoolThing outright dangerous]] [[ThinkOfTheChildren for the impressionable]]. Modern examples that play these straight are met with fierce criticism.
* StandardHeroReward: Now widely seen as [[UnfortunateImplications sexist against women]], for having a woman be an "object" to be rewarded. If you play this straight outside of HistoricalFiction or one of the grandfathered-in examples (and even those sometimes), you can expect very harsh criticism.
* StandingInTheHall: Parodied in some Japanese works still; but not used in RealLife as much. In western countries, similar variants aren't used due to kids taking it as an opportunity to wander around the halls.
* StarTrekMovieCurse: Not taken seriously anymore after the disappointing reception of the 10th film, ''Film/StarTrekNemesis'', and the massive success of the 11th film, the 2009 reboot ''Film/StarTrek''.
* SternNun: For one thing, many teachers at modern Catholic schools are laypeople, not nuns. For another thing, after the advent of the Self-Esteem Movement of TheSeventies, parents would be all up in arms if a teacher (whether a nun or a layperson) meted out those kinds of punishments. (Nuns also haven't worn those starchy white wimples since the 1970s at the latest, but you'll still occasionally see them, usually for humor.)
* StrangerDanger: Aesops about the inherent dangers of talking to strangers were huge in the 1990s, but due to changing attitudes (coupled with the discovery that the majority of abuse comes from people that ''the victims know personally'') it's rarely played straight.
* SomeOfMyBestFriendsAreX: Because using it is pretty much the equivalent of having the character wear a shirt saying "HEY I'M A BIGOT," along with an added Ku Klux Klan hood and jackboots for flair - you've instantly made him/her a PoliticallyIncorrectVillain even if you don't wish to have done so.
* SuperheroesWearCapes: Time was when every other superhero had a cape. These days, capes are considered to be impractical, and even dangerous (see the fate of Dollar Bill in ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}'' or [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jy2YhxXn7NY Edna Mode's speech about cape-related mishaps]] in ''TheIncredibles''). You'll still see capes on plenty of DC heroes such as the Superman family and the Bat family, but mostly because of the GrandfatherClause. Aside from Doctor Strange, the Vision, Thor and the supervillains Magneto and Dr. Doom, Marvel has very few characters who wear capes.
* TechnicolorScience: On the verge of becoming this thanks to the fact that much of the lab equimpent that this trope depends on is either becoming outdated or less important in modern laboratories. Glass test tubes are being replaced by eppendorf tubes, plastic wellplates, or other plastic disposable equipment where tests can be done with only microliters of samples and chemicals. Complex glassware apparatus setups that look like MadScientistLaboratory equipment have already gone the way of the dodo. The functions of those apparatus' are now either obsolete or accomplished using miniaturized and simpler equipment.
* ThatRemindsMeOfASong: Modern musicals, at least in theatre, are specifically ''not'' supposed to play this one straight anymore, though there's still a chance a song of this nature may end up as a BreakawayPopHit
* ThereAreNoGirlsOnTheInternet: The online population has reflected real-world gender distributions since 2001 or so.
* TheyWastedAPerfectlyGoodSandwich: Because unless the scene requires the actor to actually be consuming the food or drink, it's expensive and hard to do multiple takes without spoilage or appearance change. Fake prop food or drink is usually used instead. This is ''doubly'' true in the case of alcohol, where drinking can be faked (and most sets generally have rules against consuming on set), and most "alcohol" on film isn't the real thing, but water with food coloring, apple juice, tea, grape juice, soda...
* TooGoodForThisSinfulEarth: Still pops up occasionally in particularly {{Glurge}} heavy works, but is growing increasingly unpopular and criticized due to the UnfortunateImplications it entails (implies that [[StrawNihilist life in general is somehow terrible and that being good will just get you killed]]) and how [[{{Anvilicious}} laughably heavy-handed]] uses of the trope tend to be.
* TrojanGauntlet: In most places, changing sexual mores and TechMarchesOn (condoms are no longer behind the counter, self service checkouts) have rendered this trope a thing of the past.
* TruckDriversGearChange: It's become such a cliche, especially during the second half of the twentieth century, that it's now almost impossible to play it completely straight anymore.
* WhatAreRecords: Most kids are not as clueless about old technology as we think they are. It also helps that records have undergone a recent resurgence in popularity.
* WhiteMansBurden: Increasingly difficult to play straight without being mocked thanks to its racist overtones.
* WildSamoan: Obvious UnfortunateImplications and SocietyMarchesOn make this discredited now. (This doesn't apply to ProfessionalWrestling, the performance art that time forgot.)
* Old magic tricks like the DisappearingBox and SawAWomanInHalf are best not done in their straight form these days, as everyone's seen them dozens of times and probably knows how those tricks are done.
* In modern chase scenes the FruitCart, SheetOfGlass, and BabyCarriage are only included with at least a wink -- for serious chases [[RedShirt something else that will go splat]] is used.
* UnwinnableByDesign: Used to be a staple of the adventure game genre, particularly if Sierra was at the helm. These days, almost no games are cruel enough to still use it as a mechanic.
* The VirginInAWhiteDress. Nowadays, Western women are free to have sex lives before marriage (although it may be frowned upon in some circles), and free to choose what color dress they wear. It's entirely possible (heck, even ''likely'') that a modern bride wearing a white dress might not be a virgin or might only be a TechnicalVirgin. And second, third, fourth, etc.-time brides are still allowed to wear white if they choose to. Another reason of why this is discredited is the fact that white lost its connotations of purity and became simply the color associated with marriages, that's why most wedding decorations is either white or in any other very light color such as cream.
* YellowPeril: When played seriously, with ''no'' mitigating factors (e.g. being HistoricalFiction set in WorldWarII with ImperialJapan as an enemy), this is ''[[UnfortunateImplications extremely racist]]'' in almost all cases. A portrayal of UsefulNotes/NorthKorea ''might'' be able to step close to the trope, but even there, focusing on the race/racial attributes as a large part of the villainy rather than internal genocide and repression is obviously going to come off as racist.