There's something going on that only you can see or hear. Maybe you have a Spirit Advisor
; maybe there's some magic that only you're aware of. You (or the audience) may even start to question your sanity
, but you've come to accept that nobody else notices this thing
Then, someone else does. Naturally, you're incredibly surprised.
Compare You Can See Me?
and Did You See That Too?
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Anime and Manga
- In the Afro Samurai manga, a variation occurs— no one but Afro can see or hear Ninja Ninja, and in the anime series, he's simply imaginary or a hallucination. When someone comes along that evidently can see him, Ninja Ninja is the one that's surprised.
- In JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, many Stand users are relieved the first time they meet another one, since Stands are invisible and intangible to anyone but other users.
- Heck, this is the way Stands were introduced to the series, with main character Jotaro convinced that he is possessed by an evil spirit, until his grandfather Joseph is called in to explain things.
- In Natsume Yuujinchou, three people say this to the main character, who has always been lonely because in his childhood, no one would believe him when he says he can see Youkai, though only one of them can actually see; the other two can feel their presence and see them under certain circumstances.
- There's a heartwrenching flashback to Natsume's childhood where he is befriended by an older girl who claims to be able to see them too. For the first time in his life, he's not alone. Turns out she's a youkai herself, and just took human form so she could get near him.
- Ga-Rei's main character is plagued by spirits. When he meets a girl who is able to see them as well, she promptly recruits him for the government.
- In Yu-Gi-Oh!, a lot of characters could see and talk to Duel Spirits. The first known character was Raphael, who could see the spirits of the Guardians (whether they actually ever talked back to him isn't known).
- Quite a few characters could do this in Yu-Gi-Oh! GX, including Judai, Manjyome, Johan, and to a lesser extent, Kaiser, along with a few minor characters. (This seemed a common ability here.)
- Ruka could do so in Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds, and seemed to act as a medium of sorts, as other humans could sometimes see and hear them when they were around her.
- Frank Miller's Ronin had a variant when a samurai and his lord are by some Buddha statues, having a conversation. Suddenly, the statues suddenly join in on the conversation and the Samurai yelps that the statues are talking. At that, the Lord notes he's glad his retainer heard them too since he didn't want to think he was going senile. As it turns out, the voices were coming from Mooks who wanted to spook their targets before they ambushed them.
- This happens at the end of Ghost. Oda Mae's the only one who can hear Sam until the White Light appears. Then his girlfriend can hear him, too. And a few seconds later, they can both see him as well.
- In The Film of the Book Jumanji:
- Alan thinks he's the only person who can hear the drumming coming from the box, until Sarah shows up and can hear it too.
- Also Carl and Alan exchange looks to make sure they both are seeing monkeys on a motorcycle.
- Also, at one point, Sarah and the kids see a few monkeys go by on a motorcycle. Sarah, who had spent 26 years doubting her sanity, was mildly nonplussed.
Sarah: You just saw three monkeys go by on a motorcycle, right?
Judy: (nervously) Yeah....
Sarah: Good girl. Come on.
- In Heart and Souls, Thomas (and the ghosts) are very surprised to meet someone in the hospital who can see the four souls.
- Played with in A Beautiful Mind. After giving a lecture in class, John Nash is greeted in the hall by a man. Before he talks to him, Nash inquires of a passing student if she can see the man. Makes sense, given that he's been given to long-standing hallucinations.
- Of course, if the passing student had been a hallucination, this tactic would not have worked. Even if the man was real.
- Happens at the end of The Frighteners. Throughout the film, Frank has been the only one capable of seeing spirits, due to the traumatic near-death experience he had. At the end, he spies the ghost of Agent Dammers in the back of the sheriff's car. Lucy comments that he looks pissed, much to Frank's shock; the events of the film's climax have given her the ability to see ghosts as well.
- In the Stephen King novel It, the children band together to defeat It once they realize that only they can see it after talking about it to each other.
- In Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Harry's confused when he starts seeing the thestrals when nobody else can. He's less than entirely reassured when Luna tells him that she can see them too, and that he's just as sane as she is.
- Later in the book, it's revealed why only a few people can see them: they're only visible to those who have directly witnessed a death. Only three students present at the thestral feeding (Harry, Neville, and a Slytherin student) can see them, as can Hagrid. Umbridge apparently can't.
- Presumably after the Battle of Hogwarts pretty much all the senior years can see them. Goody.
- In The Way Of Kings, by Brandon Sanderson, Kaladin is nearly convinced that the spren talking to him is a sign of insanity...then Rock bows to her.
- In the Newsflesh series, Shaun has been hallucinating his dead sister George In the third book, when they break into the CDC (again), they meet up with a clone of George. Needless to say, Shaun is very surprised that Becks and Mahir can also see her. Not that Becks and Mahir take it very well, as their blog entries at the end of the chapter show.
Live Action TV
- "If you see it too, then it must be real", sung in desperation on Wuthering Heights song "Lost at Sea".
- In The BBC Radio 4 drama serial Little Grudges, the main character runs a Cornish teashop infested with bright red pixies that only she can see, and that are delighted by negative emotions. Bonnie suspects (and the listener assumes) they're a product of her mind, until the last episode, when nice young lad Tom stamps on one and asks her "This might sound weird, but do you have a problem with pixies? Mum had them after Dad left. Hers were green."
- In an uncharacteristically serious moment for A Very Potter Sequel, Sirius proves his bona fides to Harry by admitting that what he sees in the Mirror of Erised is the same as what Harry sees - Lily and James Potter, alive again.
- In an episode of The Simpsons, Homer meets a roofer by the name of Ray Magini (voiced by Ray Romano). However, Homer's friends and family claim never to have seen him even when Homer insists they've been together. This culminates in Homer receiving electroshock for a perceived psychiatric disorder. Then Ray shows up and everyone present is able to see him — the previous non-sightings are explained through a series of increasingly-convoluted circumstances.
- Wilheim Rontgen discovered X-rays by accident, and as test after test confirmed their existence, he began to believe he'd gone mad. Finally, one day, he called his wife into his laboratory and had her put her hand in the way of the device emitting them. She promptly screamed and fled on seeing the bones of her hand, convinced she'd seen an omen of her death, and never entered his lab again. Rontgen, however, was incredibly relieved that someone else had seen the effects, and began to write up his experiments for publication.