aka: Missing Supertrope Syndrome
Sometimes a trope is limited, but people put examples and wicks that are broader, due to lack of a Super Trope that covers the broader definition. This is a frequent cause for problems on TV Tropes. Square Peg Round Trope examples tend to be a sign that a trope (or a group of Sister Tropes) has one or more underlying concepts that cover less specific situations. When an editor wants to list an example that shares the underlying concept, but doesn't actually match the specific Trope(s), they will tend to add it to one (or more) of the pages, perhaps saying that it is "a variation" or "not a straight example". Sometimes these entries are decidedly in violation of the page's definition, making it textbook Square Peg Round Trope. When multiple editors start using the same "variations", it is a form of Trope Decay. Why does it happen? It's a lot easier for editors to propose (and write up) tropes of specific concepts than the more general ones that underlie them. It's often the case that a new trope was inspired by one specific example, and the troper found enough similar examples that a trope could be formed.
Signs a trope may be suffering from Missing Supertrope Syndrome
- Word Cruft to fit examples into the definition.
- Generic name for a specialized trope.
- Multiple sister tropes without a parent trope (or index).