Inner Monologue Conversation
You have a character who's thinking. Not Thinking Out Loud
, actually thinking inside their own head
. And yet, another, non
-psychic character can still hear them. And starts talking back—mentally or aloud. The first character's lips didn't move, and no one has any means of telepathy
or Applied Phlebotinum
If characters weren't aware this was even possible, this is an Unexpected Gameplay Change
of sorts applied to the rules of communication. Expect many a Flat "What."
In some instances, this is because the characters know each other well enough. Not that that makes any more sense. In this case, if a character actually acts
to react to the other character's thought process, then it could be a Preemptive "Shut Up"
or The Tape Knew You Would Say That
. All three of these are meant to automatically fall under Rule of Funny
Because thought will happen in any quote used in an example, please use (parentheses) to indicate "thought speak"
, and "quotation marks" to indicate normal speech, as in the quote above.
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- In an ad for AT&T U-Verse (satillite TV service), a female customer thinks about the service and a male sales rep responds. At one point she thinks (Is this guy reading my mind?) and he responds, "No, ma'am."
Anime and Manga
- During the Desperate Fight of Disciples in History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi The Elder reads Niijima's mind while he's going over his strategy to use a weaker member of the Shinpaku Alliance as a Sacrificial Lamb.
- During the Arlong Park battles in One Piece, Nojiko & Genzou have such a conversation while underwater and trying to rescue Luffy.
- The characters of Beelzebub often start doing this in funny situations. At first it was just a one-off the two main characters did (described as telepathy), but after that everyone started joining in.
- In Masaya Hokazono's "Inugami", all animals, including the Inugami (wolves with various powers commanded by an unknown voice to leave the forest and spy on humans), speak by some form of thought speech to each other unheard by humans. One of the wolves, 23 (because of the of the number tattooed to his ear) learns to speak English with assistance from his human companion, Fumiki. When 23 encounter Zero, another Inugami, the latter is enraged partly because of cruelty at the hands of humans, and what he thinks are crude noises coming from 23's mouth. Zero later learns English himself when captured by the head of an unscrupulous pharmaceutical corporation, yet his hatred of humans remains until the very end of the series.
- In Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There, a group of passengers on a train keep speaking in chorus and commenting that X is worth a thousand pounds a Y, but no one's really listening. The passengers hear Alice's thoughts, and she hears theirs, too.
Alice: (There's no use in speaking.)
Passengers, in chorus:note (Better say nothing at all. Language is worth a thousand pounds a word!)
- In the Edgar Allan Poe story "Murders in the Rue Morgue" starring C. Auguste Dupin, he's walking silently with his friend who is also silent, and then says something appropos to what the friend is thinking. Dupin explains that he followed his friend's thoughts based on body and eye cues, and jumped in at an appropriate time.
- Poe's version is also referenced by Sherlock Holmes to Dr. Watson on a couple of occasions, to prove to Watson he's as good as the fictional Dupin, even though Holmes thinks doing it is "showy and superficial."
Live Action TV
- In the play Interiors by Dean Barrett, each character is accompanied by a second actor representing the character's inner monologue. Partway through the play, the inner monologues realise they can hear each other, and start holding their own conversation independent of the external conversation taking place at the same time.
- The Randomverse used this in a competition between Wolverine and Rorschach. As the characters' mouths never move, this is only noted by stating it occuring and a slight change in inflection.
- One of the Pokémon Movie Review Crossover's being done by Sučde, Linkara, and Jewario starts off with the first two having deep internal monologues, about errors and their hatred of overblown narration respectively, when Jewario just stares at the camera for a moment thinking "....cats are funny....". A second round of internal monologues begin, this time about how much fun reviewing the movies was and their goal of getting the (fictional) Pokémon MMO released by reviewing all the movies. Except that Jewario starts to mentally sing his superhero theme, interrupting Linkara who notes it as "rude". Sučde than asks them if "as long as we're breaking at least seven laws of physics" they want to review the next movie. They agree, and enter the game world.