People — particularly those with authority, be it moral or political — are expected to act in a manner in accordance with the ideals they espouse. That is to say, they should practice what they preach.
Not all who fail to live up to these standards are hypocrites. Some people may fervently and honestly believe what they say is right and good but they lack the moral strength or willpower to consistently live up to their own high standards. These aren't hypocrites (although they can risk becoming so). A hypocrite, by definition, only pretends to believe what he preaches, although the more self-aware among them may occasionally acknowledge (and/or attempt to justify) their situation with a Hypocrisy Nod.
Frequently, they will be found out. Be it an Engineered Public Confession or through investigation. The Hero may have the choice of either exposing them as a fraud and discrediting them before their followers, or keeping their secret and blackmailing them into cleaning up their act or helping in another matter. How this turns out depends on how sympathetic or Jerk Ass they are, and how humanizing their "vice" is (a diet guru eating donuts is probably ok, an eco-businessman clear cutting forests probably isn't, a moral crusader molesting children definitely isn't). If a villain finds a friend of the hero's Fatal Flaw this way (or worse, the hero's own), they might use Flaw Exploitation to torment and control them.
If found out and/or exposed, the hypocrite will have the chance to mend their ways and do a Heel-Face Turn in one of two forms. Either loosening their standards and living a simpler but more honest and happier life, or tightening their belt and actually live up to their ideal. Failure to do either is usually enough for either a mental breakdown or a full on Face-Heel Turn as they reject their morality and embrace their vice.
Alternatively, because they are feigning what they claim to be, they may find they are Becoming the Mask.
Heroes are often accused of hypocrisy by villains who want to believe they're Not So Different and brag At Least I Admit It. Heroes who actually are hypocrites tend to hear "What the Hell, Hero?" quite a lot. (Unless they don't.)
In Batman: Heart of Hush, Hush mocks Batman's crime-fighting career as a sign of his inability to move on from his past. This is pretty rich considering that his own vendetta against Bruce stems from a grudge he's held since childhood for something that wasn't even Bruce's fault.
In the final issue of Batman: Incorporated, Talia al'Ghul sneers that Batman is a "pompous, posturing bastard". While a fair criticism, no one from the House of al'Ghul — Talia included — has much room to be criticising others on any of those counts.
Minor example: In a Beetle Bailey strip in November 2013, Sarge tells Cookie he should wear a helmet because they're in a combat zone, saying so while not wearing one himself.
In Blackest Night, Captain Cold justifies killing the second Captain Boomerang by claiming "Rogues don't kill women and children." Trouble is the lineup at the time includes the second Mirror Master (who definitely killed Rachel Rathaway as well as the Rathaways' female housekeeper), the second Trickster (unless all the homeless people he blew up happened to be adult men), and Heat Wave (again, unless he somehow only caught adult men in his numerous acts of arson).
General Ross' ultimate goal - and some would say obsession - is to bring the Hulk to justice, believing him a dangerous threat. While this view isn't uncommon, his eventual solution after years of failure is hypocrisy at its worst: He becomes the Red Hulk, a monster who, in many ways, just as destructive as his foe is, possibly more so.
At the start of Issue #1, Otto swears to become a hero and leave his past behind. A couple of pages later, he gets quite angry at the "unmitigated gall" of a bunch of C-List villains using the name of "his" old group, the Sinister Six.
Otto constantly brags how he's a Superior Spider-Man to Peter. He's also the guy who called the X-Men arrogant for using superior in homo superior.
Throughout the Ends Of The Earth, Otto bemoans the fact that he's been effectively crippled by Spider-Man, even though this was because he'd been breaking the law and running into Spidey so many times instead of receiving a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown like he claimed. What does he do when he becomes Spider-Man? Deliver excessive beatings to all criminals.
One of his major arguments against Peter is that he's too selfish to be Spider-Man. This from an egomaniac who's ultimate goal during ''Ends Of the Earth was to get attention.
In Avenging Spider-Man he scoffs at Scott Lang's past in thievery as if he hasn't done anything as petty. In another issue, his monologue concerning the Hobgoblin is about how the villain's smugness and thoughts of being better then everyone else grates on him.
In the "Sibling Rivalry" crossover betweenSuperior Spider-Man Team-Up & Scarlet Spider, Otto complains about Kaine "stealing [his] life". Right, like he should talk.
And in the Infinity tie-in to Mighty Avengers, he freaks the hell out when he sees Ronin (known at the time as "Spider Hero") wearing a knock-off Spider-Man costume. Twice, he gets mad at someone for stealing another hero's identity, something he himself has done.
In Salvation Run, Gorilla Grodd mocks Monsieur Mallah's claims that they are similar and derides him as the uplifted pet of a Mad Scientist. Grodd conveniently fails to mention that he was uplifted by an alien Mad Scientist.
Marion Keeny in Scarecrow: Year One calls her daughter a whore for having a child out of wedlock and suggests burying the (living) baby in the backyard, but the fact that her and her daughter's surnames are the same as that of Marion's mother implies that she may not have been married either.
Or they just kept their maiden names.
Wolverine can be like this at times, and it's almost become his defining character train post-Schism. Despite a body count too long to list and being the X-Men's go-to-guy for doing the dirty work none of the others are willing to do, suddenly in Logan's mind Cyclops is wrong for doing the things the X-Men have done from their inception by training the younger mutants how to fight and defend themselves. It's meant to be a mark of his character development brought about by Rahne and Laura being on X-Force, but the way Logan demonizes Scott for the sorts of things he himself has done all his life, particularly after the events of Avengers vs. X-Men is hypocrisy at its finest.
In X-23's solo series, Logan and Gambit, of all people, also treat Hellion like a criminal and keep him locked up in a cell at the school after he uses his powers to kill Karima (who even begged him to kill herbefore her corrupted programming took over again!). Despite both of them having done far, far worse in their lives themselves and been forgiven for it. And, for that matter, while giving Laura a pass on all of the things she had done.
Just to add some examples: one story features him telling Zipi and Zape off because he thought they were smoking cigarettes (they weren't), explaining how unhealthy they are. He doesn't mind that he's almost always smoking himself.
Don Pantuflo often tells Zipi and Zape off because of their bad marks on school, telling them he always got A. One story, however, revealed he never achieved more than a B. Although whether this is canonical is questionable, the fact is that Pantuflo is always depicted as having trouble at the time of helping Zipi and Zape with their homework.
Sally has been a princess for an incredible amount of time and never just ascends to title of Queen. Contrary to all the obligations that goes with it nothing says she can't be a queen but lead the Freedom Fighters ( her father was king and led and army into battle.) She also never steps up and challenges her father but instead chooses to whine that his choices are unfair instead of calling him out and talking to him like an adult but as his little girl.
Knuckles often calls Sonic obnoxious and having a big ego but knuckles himself is no easier to deal with. His entire training as guardian basically made an anti social hot head who sees everyone even children as enemies and always resorts to his fist than to reason. That being said he's miles better than the rest of his family as he actually tries to help everyone.
Antoine calls Sonic ego centric and does not play well with others which is sometimes true but Antoine isn't any better. He himself had an ego for a time and in all honesty Sonic has earn the right to brag about himself. Considering he runs head first into battle against tyrants that put him as number 1 on their shit list and never backs down or is intimidated. Antoine can only dream to get that far.
Geoffrey is the worst among them. He lost both his parents which made him easy to manipulate by Naugus, but here's the kicker...SO HAS EVERYONE ELSE. He's not the only person to lose loved ones. Sonic has had the displeasure of fighting his and other peoples' loved ones and having to break terrible news to people but he learns to move on as there are more important things to worry about. That's impressive considering that in one of his jaunts into alternate dimensions he had to kill that world's version of his own father. Another comes in as Geoffrey is honestly very insecure and has issues with envy. He never fully gets over his jealousy of Sonic's love-life with Sally and successes. This started when Sonic was teenager and he was a grown man and to this day despite being married and having a life he still has some hate towards Sonic.
Possibly the best example is in Endgame: Despite personally knowing about Robotnik's Auto Automatons, robots that can perfectly imitate people, he still believes that Sonic killed Sally until when Dulcy confirms that Sonic's been framed, stating that dragons can sense truth. Throw in his jealousy, and Geoffrey just inexplicably seems to hate Sonic so much that all he needs is an excuse.
Arguably even Sonic himself to some degree. While he retains his "like the wind" ethics of the games counterpart, he tends to be one of the Freedom Fighters most wary to others stepping out of line or not listening to him, in some cases bordering a tantrum prone Control Freak. Add to that he has an inconsistent attitude to pacifism and forgiveness, while he has considered sympathy even for his mortal enemy, Eggman at times, he held a rather lengthy violent grudge against Silver for his rather tasteless (and badly timed) approach to heroics.
She sneeringly refers to TCB!Lyra as "the Betrayer", never mind she herself is a remorseless Vidkun Quisling for the entire human race.
To top it off, she wouldn't even consider taking the potion herself, while forcing it on countless others. Word of God states that Queen Celestia placed a hypnotic suggestion into her mind to keep her from taking the potion, because she'd likely be much less useful as a newfoal anyway.
In the opening scene of the CLANNAD fanfic An End To All Things, Okazaki advises Furukawa to not live in the past. What was he doing shortly before he told her that? Reliving a memory.
Death Note Equestria: Twilight says the Second Kira disgusts her for killing innocents, even foals (like Sweetie Belle). This in spite of having killed plenty of innocents to protect her own hide, including a reporter not much older than Sweetie Belle.
Escape from the Hokage's Hat: Kakashi is known to preach "Those who abandon their mission are trash. Those who abandon their allies are worse than trash." and how teamwork is important. However he gets called on this by many ninja in Konoha when it's pointed out that he abandoned Naruto and Sakura's training in favor of Sasuke, who then turned traitor and then had the audacity to mope over Sasuke being imprisoned when by his own teachings Sasuke is "worse than trash".
Lereal Belsai of Hivefled thinks of himself as a devout Sufferist, but instead of thinking the hemospectrum ranking should be removed, he wants it reversed and the coldbloods enslaved in turn, hating them to the point that he dismisses Gamzee as a spy out of hand despite the obvious marks of torture on him, and demands that a ragtag collection of Child Soldiers try to take on the entire empire. He's been described by a reader as the Malcolm X to the Sufferer's Martin Luther King.
In Mega Man Reawakened, the Neo Emerald Spears profess hatred of robots yet use mechs to attack.
Dakari-King Mykan, big time. He spends most of his time bragging on how evil people who bash the work of others can be (something related to him being the victim of several mocks over the years) and admitted to have worked as a child entertainer who taught little kids about how important friendship and believing in yourself is. But then he created My Little Unicorn to bash My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic just because it rules on The Power of Friendship, admits to being glad when he makes fans of the show angry/sad with his work, and abandoned the concept of believing in yourself entirely for the remake. Let`s not forget that he hates the original show with a passion, but watched it till the second season finale, and actually ships his Gary Stu with Celestia because he himself has a crush on her.
The Prayer Warriors have too many examples to list here, but the one that best notes their tendency to fall into this is when Jerry says "Killing a Christian is a sin", and in the next paragraph, when Thalia Grace comes up to him repenting her sins, Jerry kills her, believing that she deserves to die if she's lying and if she's telling the truth, she will die a Christian death.
Prison Island Break: Silver finds himself betraying his friends and denouncing God in order to survive in prison.
Hypocrisy Nod: He's well aware of his hypocrisy and is disgusted with himself.
Keiran Halcyon wrote the Rose Potter series due to thinking that all the plot twists and such in the original were so obvious that anyone could have seen them coming. The series abruptly stopped when Deathly Hallows came out, due to the events of that book NOT being what Halycon predicted.
In the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fic Unexpected Confessions, the Mane 6 find themselves in a rather ridiculous chain of crushes, with Twilight>Applejack>Rainbow Dash in the middle. At one point, Twilight calls AJ out for pining over Dash, suggesting she look for (hint hint) somepony who loves her for herself, rather than pursuing somepony for whom she would at best be a second choice or safety net- the latter, of course, being what Twilight is doing at that exact moment.
Many "Alternate Universe" Harry Potter fanfics have depicted Harry being Sorted into Slytherin instead of Gryffindor. In almost every single one of them, Harry becomes a pureblood bigot, subscribing to and even championing Slytherin House's philosophy condemning Muggles and Muggle-born wizards as inferior... despite the fact that Harry's own mother, who sacrificed her life to save Harry's, was Muggle-born.
The 'Social Justice Sally' meme targets hypocritical and self-righteous social justice 'activists' who just act exactly the same as the kind of bullies and bigots they claim to oppose.
Zeus from Classical Mythology was said to despise liars, oath-breakers, and people who picked on the weak. He killed the mortal Ixion and later punished him in the afterlife for breaking the laws of hospitality and trying to sleep with Hera. Yet Zeus himself cheated on Hera regularly, sometimes with other men's wives, breaking his marriage vows and often lied to her to try and hide it. He also tended to victimize weak mortals or allows the other gods to do so when it was convenient.
Odin from Norse Mythology is sometimes viewed as one. Contrary to Norse virtues of honesty, manliness, and meeting your opponents openly in battle Odin was known to use trickery, disguises, and underhanded tactics to get what he wanted and practiced a form of magic considered womanly. Loki once claimed Odin went so far as to give the undeserving victory in battle.
On The Debaters, comedian/debator Jon Steinberg debated that debates themselves are pointless. He won.
Parodied in The Arctic Monkeys' "A Certain Romance", where the singer is complaining about a bunch of violent, drunken chavs, and surmising that if anyone pointed out to them how vulgar they are they wouldn't take the blindest bit of notice. It then goes on to admit that the singer's own group of friends are also drunken, brawling louts who "might overstep the line, but you just cannot get angry in the same way".
Jay-Z put "Death of Auto-Tune (D.O.A.)" on an album with several Auto-Tuned hooks. Jeez.
The complaint was about rappers using auto-tune as a gimmick, not about auto-tune in general.
Metallica got famous by tape trading their cassette demo "No Life Til Leather", which landed them a record deal. They also were known to allow fans to record, visual and audio, their sets and circulate them freely. But the moment they got big and started making real money off their music they sued Napster over doing the same things that got them their fiercely loyal fan base to begin with.
Several songs on Michael Jackson's HIStory have him railing against injustice and persecution, both of people at large and himself specifically, as he was being hounded by the mass media at the time over child molestation allegations. In "Childhood", a key lyric is "Before you judge me/Try hard to love me" — i.e., don't be so quick to condemn based on assumptions. On the same album is "D.S.", a song about Tom Sneddon, the district attorney who ultimately headed up both of the investigations of Jackson's behavior with children. Sample lyric: "You think he brother with the KKK?/I know his mother never taught him right anyway"...what was that about judging people again, Mike?
In Moonwalker, he included the song "Leave Me Alone" which railed against the public/tabloid attention he was always hounded with — in the middle of a film that can best be described as a 90-minute commercial for the Michael Jackson brand.
The folksinger Phil Ochs loved to ridicule this trope from any side of the political spectrum. "Draft Dodger Rag" is about a red-blooded conservative who's all for that war in Vietnam, so long as he doesn't have to go himself, while "Love Me, I'm A Liberal," is about someone who pays lip service to every left-wing cause until it becomes dangerous, distasteful or personally uncomfortable. ("The people of old Mississippi/ should all hang their heads in shame,/I can't understand how their minds work./ What's the matter, don't they watch Les Crane?/But if you ask me to bus my children/ I hope the cops take down your name ....")
The song "Rude" by Magic! has a bit of a hypocritical premise: the singer wants to marry the daughter of a man, but he basically wants to say screw you and marry her anyway (Why you gotta be so rude?/Don't you know i'm human too?/Why you gotta be so rude?/I'm gonna marry her anyway). In that very mindset you can say the singer is the one who's being "rude" trying to rebel against the man and steal his daughter despite his request not to.
Dungeons & Dragons has the Githyanki, one of the Scary Dogmatic Alien races. Their backstory is that they are the descendants of humans/humanoids enslaved by the brain-suckingillithids, who eventually rebelled and sundered their empire. Because of this, they have an intense aversion to the concept of slavery, and are determined that they will never be slaves again. Ever. They even refuse to worship gods because they consider religion as resembling slavery too much. This self-same aversion to slavery has also caused them to build their society into an oppressive, rigidly structured Fantastic Caste System that is devoted to churning out warriors, swearing allegiance to their lich-queen so blindly that they willingly let her eat their souls to sustain her undeath, and giving them the notorious rate of raiding, slaughtering and indirectly enslaving all non-githyanki races they encounter. They are blind to their hypocrisy and will insist that what they do is different. Usually at the end of a sword.
Magic: The Gathering: the Boros Legion of Ravnica opposes Guild violence. How do they do this? With violence! Lots and lots of violence!
The Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game is a huge example of this. Players will accuse the opponent of winning simply because their deck is able to use an extremely overpowered broken card that should technically be on the Limited/Forbidden list and does get on the list later, but they themselves play a card just as overpowered and banworthy in their deck.
The Imperium of Man preaches the sanctity and holiness of the pure human form. To this end, they ruthlessly seek mutants and people with "defects" to kill them. However, their greatest warriors, the superhuman Space Marines, are packed with so many biological and cybernetic enhancements that they barely count as human anymore. The Imperium also persecutes psykers, despite the fact that a) the Imperium would absolutely collapse without them, and b) their God Emperor himself was one.
The Eldar, naturally, never miss an opportunity to deride humanity as violent, irrational, decadent fools. A cursory inspection of Eldar history, or indeed the very existence of their piratical Commorrite brethren, will validate that Our Elves Are Most AssuredlyNotBetter. Heck, at least we didn't Squick a Chaos God into existence entirely through our own bloodthirst and depravity.
Also from Hamlet; the whole plot of the play involves Hamlet trying to get vengeance for his father's murder. Despite how enraged he is about his father's murder, when he himself murders the totally innocent Polonius and indirectly murders the equally innocent Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, Hamlet has the gall to crack jokes about it.
Psionic Minmax is trying to rewrite the laws of reality, because he has decided that the universe is too flawed to exist in its present state. Yet he accuses Forgath of possessing a sense of "omnipotent self-importance" when the latter complains about him murdering his friend Kin.
"Ruby" Kin from alternate reality #80 tries to convince our Kin that she cannot trust Minmax and should come with Kin#80 and her alternate reality Kin companions instead. Kin refuses, remaining adamant that she can trust Minmax, whereupon Ruby decides to take Kin's decisions into her own hands by stealing the Memento MacGuffin of Kin and Minmax's trust and dropping it down an oblivion hole, erasing it from existence.
Living with Insanity had an arc where Alice had to deal with customers who were rude, overly demanding and blamed her for things she couldn't control. When David takes her to a cafe after work, she does this.
In Ménage à 3, Dillon frequently complains about his past and current boyfriends cheating on him, and takes this as an excuse to criticize other characters for their own intentions to cheat. However, he also boasts about seducing twenty-seven straight men into nights of passion that made them "forget their girlfriends". Some readers took this as a gay man's figure of speech meaning "past girlfriends and heterosexuality in general" rather than implying actual infidelity, but Dillon certainly got into a Casting Couch relationship with one married man. Anyway, later, in Sticky Dilly Buns, Dillon apparently confirmed that it was literally true. Ruby, in the latter strip, may have the plot function of being the first character who is sufficiently immune to Dillon's cuteness to call him on this hypocrisy. She's already had to remind him of his uncontrolled flirtatiousness when starting a supposedly serious relationship.
In Mortifer, it's explained that demons get more powerful from certain emotions or lifestyles related to their power. While all of them become more powerful as they lose their grip on reality, Zebidiah, as a shapeshifting demon, becomes more powerful the more hypocritical he is. Which is why he works as a priest despite being a demon.
Another example is Redcloak saying that paladins are unnatural abominations due to their magical lack of fear. He refers to himself as a "100% all-natural goblin" during the Breaking Speech. He conveniently leaves out the fact that he's wearing a magical artifact that has prolonged his natural lifespan by decades.
Hell, Redcloak as a character is based around hypocrisy. In order to get revenge on the racist treatment goblins have suffered since creation, he makes plots and plans built around genocide, something that by definition is racist.
At the climax of Suburban Knights the Big BadMalachite, after spending the series killingpeople for being overly reliant on technology (and unlike most killing on TGWTG.com shows, his actions are NOT played for laughs) and in the middle of declaring his intention to destroy all technology, is interrupted by an utterly trivial call on his iPhone. He is promptly called out on for this, and initially responds by trying to deny that an iPhone counts as technology.