No, not Creator/{{Aaron|Spelling}}. Or Tori.

In television and movies, due in part to TheLawOfConservationOfDetail, no matter how many ways to spell a name there are, the person in question will ''always'' spell it correctly, first try, even if only told the name over a telephone or even a bad radio transmission. This includes slang words, given names, surnames, chemical names, astronomical names... there is never a need for a spell-[[JustForPun chequer]] in Hollywood.

Many given names and surnames can also be legitimately spelled in various ways (Claire, Clare, Clair...) and are seldom disambiguated. The situation gets especially JustForFun/{{egregious}} when the name is an example of PsmithPsyndrome or MyNaymeIs...



[[folder: Anime and Manga ]]

* Averted a few times in ''Manga/DeathNote'' because it's relevant to the plot and because Japanese contains a very high number of homophones. When Misa learns the kanji of Light's name, she spends much time wondering how it is pronounced.
** Greatly complicated by the fact that Light's name is GratuitousEnglish instead of a standard Japanese name.[[note]]These kinds are usually referred to as "Kira-kira" names, so called because of the obtuse ways the characters are connected to the pronounciation: a name with the spelling of "人" (man), for example, might be pronounced "Adam" due to the Biblical figure being the first man.[[/note]]
** A rule of the Death Note is that, if you misspell a victim's name four times, they become immune to that Note. Light does most of his work by looking up his victim's names on the Internet; when he's testing the Note near the beginning on an asshole biker, he writes six different spellings of the guy's name just to make sure (his first one's correct, funny enough).


[[folder: Comic Books ]]

* Averted in the second issue of ComicBook/CableAndDeadpool: Cable phones Irene, a friend of his on the Daily Bugle, and asks her to look up three would-be anarchists with complicated names.
--> ''Spell those.''
--> ''You're on your own.''


[[folder: Film: Animation ]]

* In ''WesternAnimation/FernGullyTheLastRainforest'', when Zak starts to carve Crysta's name in a tree trunk, he somehow knows to spell it "Crysta" rather than "Crista," "Krista," or any other variation, despite never having seen it written.


[[folder: Film: Live-Action ]]

* ''Film/TheBourneIdentity'' averts this with a telephone call to a hotel asking if they have a "John Michael Kane" staying there, and then specifying "[[NameOfCain Kane with a 'K']]".
* ''Film/KissKissBangBang'' averts this when Perry briefs Harry on their assignment giving the name of his client as "Allison Ames, A-M-E-S."
* There's a scene at the end of the film ''Film/TheCowboys'', where a man is being commissioned to make a gravestone. Despite never asking, he somehow knows how the name on the stone should be spelled (it's a fairly common name, spelled in an unusual way).
* Inverted in ''Film/BillAndTed'', when UsefulNotes/AbrahamLincoln clarifies to a cop how his surname is spelled. Whilst in full '[[YourCostumeNeedsWork Abraham Lincoln costume]]'.
* In the Creator/{{Syfy}} [[Film/SyfyOriginalMovie original movie]] ''Scream of the Banshee,'' two characters watch a video clip of a man who mutters something that sounds like "bean see." One of them jokes that it might be Spanish for "beans, yes" but the other promptly types it into a search engine and - in about two seconds - informs him that it's Gaelic for "banshee." The problem with this is that the "see" part of that Gaelic term is spelled "sidhe", and "bean sidhe" is in any case pronounced "banshee". There's no way she could have Googled it that quickly (if at all) if she didn't already know that.
* Averted in ''Film/MysteryDate'' where a man trying to name [[spoiler:Craig [=McHugh=]]] as his killer instead scrawls [[spoiler:[=McQ=]]].


[[folder: Literature ]]

* The English translation of the novel [[TheRing Rasen]] lampshades this as a plot point: Ando unconsciously writes down the kanji for "Asakawa", and Mai realises that she's never learned to spell the name.
* Used as a plot point in Creator/AgathaChristie's ''The Secret Adversary'', featuring Literature/TommyAndTuppence. A note allegedly written by Tuppence is shown clearly to be a forgery when her name is misspelled "Twopence". Not only that, but Tommy is able to identify the novel's culprit based on the misspelling, because one of the two main suspects had seen Tuppence's name written down while the other hadn't.
** Note to non-Brits or to younger British readers: "twopence" is pronounced in the same way as "tuppence", especially when it refers to "old" (pre-[[ decimalization]]) money. "Tuppence" is an informal spelling imitating the pronunciation. Someone hearing the name of the heroine but not knowing how it was spelled might very well think it is spelled "Twopence".
* Averted in Creator/StephenKing's ''Literature/TheGreenMile'', where John Coffey, whenever having to tell his name, always clarifies that it's not spelled "like the drink".
* Averted in Creator/LMMontgomery's ''Literature/AnneOfGreenGables'' series. Anne often introduces herself as "Anne Shirley. Anne--spelled with an E", to ward off those who would misspell it.
* In ''Literature/MemoirsOfAGeisha'', the main character notices someone spells her name wrong, but doesn't correct him.
* Generally averted by Literature/{{Spenser}}, who when he gives his name notes that it is spelled with an "s." People who recognize that this is "like the poet" are viewed favorably.
* In ''Literature/BigendBooks'', a minor character averts this when giving his name to the police with the air of a man who is tired of questions.
--> My name's Daniel Pease. P-e-a-s-e. As in "pudding hot".


[[folder: Television ]]

* Averted in the ''Series/OurMissBrooks'' episode "Suzie Prentisss", where the eponymous Suzie misspells her last name by giving it an extra "s".
* An episode of ''Series/CSIMiami'' involving a "Black Dawg Productions".
* ''Series/TheLoneGunmen'' had a character going by the alias Yves Adele Harlow, an [[SignificantAnagram anagram]] of Lee Harvey Oswald. Her name was never spelled out until the Gunmen made the connection, despite there being at ''least'' four different ways to spell the names involved. For one thing, 'Yves' is usually a men's name, and is pronounced exactly like the women's name 'Eve'.
* On the same note, ''Series/TheXFiles'', constantly. The trope is further highlighted by the deliberately odd names possessed by apparently everyone in the X-Files universe. (The cast of new characters in the [[Film/TheXFilesFightTheFuture first movie]], for instance: Alvin Kurtzweil; Ben Bronschweig; Jana Cassidy; Darius Michaud; Conrad Strughold.)
* ''Series/DoctorWho'' (the new series) averts this trope - multiple characters introduce themselves by pointing out a spelling eccentricity with their name (Lynda-with-a-Y, Tallulah, three Ls and an H, Rattigan with two Ts...)
* ''Series/{{Torchwood}}'':
** In ''[[Series/TorchwoodChildrenOfEarth Children of Earth]]'', Ianto (manning the computer) is instructed by Gwen to search for a person called "Clement [=McDonald=]", but with the note to try both Mc/Mac spellings as she only heard the name spoken, not written down.
** And again in the eighth episode of ''Series/TorchwoodMiracleDay''. When getting info on the mysterious three families, the CIA analyst asks them for the spelling of the names.
* Nobody in the recent series ''Series/TheInvisibleMan'' ever mistook Darien Fawkes for a Darian Fox. (Though to be fair, Fawkes and Fox are occasionally pronounced slightly differently, depending on the speaker's accent)
* Inverted in "Mr. ''Series/{{Monk}}'' and the Election," where a threat letter addressed to Natalie Teeger misspells her last name (forgetting the R in her last name). This turns out to be a ChekhovsGun.
** There was another episode where someone pronounced her name wrong while reading it off a piece of paper and she corrected him.
** Used in another episode, where someone misspelled Natalie's last name on a package containing [[spoiler:a voodoo doll]] (this time, with an A instead of a second E). Again a ChekhovsGun, when Natalie notices that the same mistake is made [[spoiler:by her paramedic, who turns out to be the murderer.]]
* Averted on ''Series/{{Lost}}''. When Hurley takes his census, he confirms the spelling of Ethan's last name (Rom, not Rahm or Rohm) before writing it down. Of course, this is so the audience can figure out that "Ethan Rom" is an anagram of "Other Man."
* Not a name, but a minor plot point in the first series finale of ''Series/{{Life On Mars|2006}}'' involves a man's last word being "key"...or possibly "quay."
* In ''Series/{{Greek}}'', Lizzi points out that her name is spelled "With two Zeta Beta Z's!"... but neglects to mention the actual potential for misspelling, the final 'i' instead of the more common 'ie' or 'y'.
* On one episode of ''Series/{{Seinfeld}}'', George tries to impress people with his uncanny ability to guess how their names are spelled. When he tries it with the head of the TV network they're trying to impress, he's coldly informed that he's "not even close."
* Averted in ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer''. When Buffy realizes that recurring villain Ethan Rayne is in town again, Riley phones the Initiative and asks for a search on hotel registrations matching his name. "Ethan Rayne, R-A-Y-N-E." (Probably intentional: the entire sequence is about contrasting Riley's down-to-Earth soldier demeanor with Buffy's supernatural methods.)
* In an early episode of ''Series/StargateSG1'', O'Neill is adamant about the correct spelling of Teal'c's name, including the apostrophe. This despite the fact that Teal'c himself comes from a culture that doesn't seem to use the Roman alphabet, and the episode takes place before he's learned practically anything about Earth culture. You wouldn't think his name would even ''have'' a standard spelling yet, let alone such a weird one.
** O'Neill constantly insists that everyone, including aliens, spell his name with "two L's", which is a ShoutOut to the fact that the character's name in the original film was spelled with one L, and also the fact that Richard Dean Anderson is nothing like Creator/KurtRussell.
** They also in one episode insist on the correct spelling of "Goa'uld", despite the fact that they ''never pronounce it correctly''.
*** Of course, there are so many different ways to pronounce an apostrophe depending on your starting language or transliteration scheme or whatnot that it actually imparts no real meaning to a native English speaker... which is probably why pronunciation varies. It's frequently used to just make something look "alien" without giving any thought on how to speak it.
* Comes up frequently on ''Series/WithoutATrace'' (a show on which - at least in the early seasons - the writers often seemed to forget that the main characters don't actually get to ''see'' witnesses' flashbacks or receive copies of the script) but a particularly egregious example was in an episode where a witness tells detectives about an African activist and then, upon returning to headquarters, one of them tells someone who wasn't present when the man was first mentioned (so even if the witness spelled the name off camera it wouldn't matter) to search for him in the FBI records. The detective promptly types the name in and rattles off the details of the man's life. The camera then shows the screen the detective is reading. This is the point at which the viewer realizes that the man's name is "Adisa Teno" and not "Adis Ateno," which is how everyone has been pronouncing it to this point.
* Averted rather reasonably on ''Series/TheWestWing'' when Josh asks Donna for information on an Indonesian official named Rahmadi Sumahidjo Bambang. She immediately asks if he can spell the name; he replies "not correctly, no."
* A bizarre version on ''Series/GameOfThrones''; Daenerys is told her scouts have discovered a city called 'Qarth', and when she meets its envoys she mispronounces it 'Kwarth' (as if it were spelled Qu- instead of Q-) and gets corrected. This is [[FandomNod a common misspelling among fans]], but makes very little sense for a woman who's only ever heard the name spoken aloud and never seen it written down.
* Averted in ''Series/{{Survivor}}'', where misspellings are par for the course at Tribal Council. Under the circumstances, it would be a major mistake to ask how a name is spelled - why would you need to know unless you're going to make a move against them?
* Averted for laughs in ''Series/SmartGuy''. TJ's been trying to find records of a "Baby Boy X" and is frustrated to find out he's really looking for "Baby Boy ''Ecks''".
* Barbara has perhaps the most impressive example of this on ''Series/{{Gotham}}''. She's attacked by a terrifying assassin, only ever hears his name, never sees it written, and writes Jim Gordon a note saying she's leaving him. Partly because she's so traumatised by "Zsasz".
* Averted in the ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' episode ''[[Recap/StarTrekTheNextGenerationS4E5RememberMe Remember Me]]''. Data, being very thorough, goes through every possible spelling variation of Dr Dalen Quaice's name.
* Averted, [[RealityEnsues of course]], in an episode of ''Series/WhoseLineIsItAnyway'', when Chip and Wayne sing a song for an audience member named "Derek" (or some spelling thereof). As they're doing the song in the style of Music/TheVillagePeople, they decide to make it a SpellingSong, ''a la'' "YMCA". It is only after they get to "D-E-R" that they have a brief "OhCrap" moment when they abruptly realize that they don't know which way to spell his name. They settle for "Derrick".
* ''Series/MacGyver1985'': Somehow, [=MacGyver=] apparently knows the correct letter case for and space in the password in "Ugly Duckling", though this may be [[JustifiedTrope justified]] thanks to the particulars of the system in question (Mac canonically knows his way around computers) and basic logic regarding English, respectively.


[[folder: Theatre ]]

* Averted in ''Theatre/TheOddCouple'', where Gwendolyn tells Felix how to spell her last name:
-->"You don't spell it like Creator/WalterPidgeon. You spell it like 'Coo-Coo' Pigeon."


[[folder: Video Games and Visual Novels ]]

* Used as a plot point in the video game ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorneyJusticeForAll''. In the first case of the game, a key piece of evidence is a message scrawled on the ground, apparently by a murder victim. The message is the word "Maggie", and the prosecution claims he was identifying his killer as his girlfriend. Phoenix realizes the message was not written by the victim, as the accused spells her name ''Maggey'', and if anyone knew how she spelled her name it would be her boyfriend.
** Used the exact same way in the first case of ''VideoGame/LaytonBrothersMysteryRoom''; here with the victim's lover is named "Felps" and the killer plants a clue framing "Phelps".
* Critical to the plot of ''VideoGame/HeavyRain'' is that [[spoiler: the Origami Killer uses the name "John '''Sheppard'''." Several characters only hear this name but miraculously know how it is spelled]].
* ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsBirthBySleep'' has a weird example - Master Xehanort's plan is to create a superweapon with a PunnyName: [[spoiler: the "X-blade", which uses the greek letter "Chi", making it sound exactly like "Keyblade".]] This confuses Ventus, and Xehanort actually interrupts his supervillain speech to clarify it, even conjuring a glowing letter as a visual aid. This explanation is only offered in Ventus's storyline, however - in Aqua and Terra's, it's almost like they can read the subtitles and pick up on the difference themselves.
* George Stobbart of ''VideoGame/BrokenSword'' is fond of introducing himself as "[[BondJamesBond Stobbart - George Stobbart]]. That's two b's, and two t's". This tends to just confuse people, as while there ''are'' two t's, they're non-consecutive.
* [[AvertedTrope Averted]] in ''VideoGame/MassEffect2''. At one point, [[PlayerCharacter Shepard]] will receive a message from a prisoner he/she shot at during a prison riot. The prisoner spells his / her name "Shepherd". Of course, judging by the spelling of the message, the prisoner was slightly illiterate.
* Averted in the ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion'' ExpansionPack, ''Shivering Isles'', where you can find a journal written by an adventurer. He writes about the 'Tsaesci', a race of snake people from Akavir, but because he's only heard the word spoken, he spells it 'Sayessie' (telling players how to pronounce it) until a scholar gets a look at the journal and insists on him writing the correct spelling.


[[folder: Web Comics ]]

* Averted in ''Webcomic/{{Sinfest}}'', where Fuchsia spells and says [[BadassBookworm Criminy's]] name "Crimnee".


[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* On one episode of ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans,'' Jinx immediately (and excitedly) spells her name when her idol, Madame Rouge, asks for it. May count as a FandomNod, since many fans had been erroneously spelling it "[[XTremeKoolLetterz Jynx]]" (like the Pokémon) instead.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/{{Fillmore}}'' episode "Codename: Electric Haircut" the heroes search for a student who does not seem to exist, despite people remembering her. When the computer expert they ask for help searches for her in the school's system, she only tries one way to spell the name (despite only hearing it) before saying this student isn't in the system. [[spoiler: Justified or maybe subverted (though, since it never comes up, maybe not on purpose) since the computer expert actually IS the missing student and of course can spell her own name.]]