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Non-Action Snarker
The tendency in fiction for a Non-Action Guy to also be a Deadpan Snarker. Often, a character who displays this trait is one of the few non–action-oriented characters in a show full of Action Girls and Big Guys. One possible explanation for this trope is that sarcasm is one way to show that a character is dissatisfied with his life, and of course no guy could be happy if he isn't MANLY enough. Another explanation might be that Non Action Guys tend to be geeks, and geeks tend to be snarky.

This trope is more likely to be male than female. A non–action-oriented girl may get this treatment, but more likely she will be a more feminine character type, such as The Chick, The Fashionista, the Damsel in Distress, the Team Mom, or Moe.

Examples

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     Anime and Manga  

  • Ai Haibara from Detective Conan. In a series where most women are at least adept at some form of martial arts, she stands out as having very little means of self-defense.
  • Kyon, from Suzumiya Haruhi.
  • Chisame in Mahou Sensei Negima! is physically useless in combat; her abilities are completely tactical.
  • The elves in Berserk, being about the size of most people's palms, just stay back and make snarky comments when battle breaks out. Afterwards, though, they have uses.
  • Asuma from Patlabor.
  • Nenene from ROD the TV is basically made of this trope. Sarcasm is basically her superpower.
  • Yukiteru in the English dub of Future Diary.
    Yukki(to Yuno, while trying to escape a Serial Killer): Oh great idea. Being on the roof makes getting away a total cinch.

     Comic Books  

     Film  

     Literature  

     Live-Action TV  

  • Any Joss Whedon work ever:
    • Xander, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
    • Doyle, from Angel. Also Cordelia, who's one of the rare female examples of this trope. Subverted with Wesley in later seasons, though.
    • Lorne. The man is made out of pure lounge music and snark.
    • Topher, from Dollhouse.
    • Wash, from Firefly.
  • Ianto on Torchwood, although he gets more action-y (and no less snarky) as the series progresses.
  • Seamus Zelazny Harper from Andromeda.
  • Timothy McGee from NCIS.
    • McGee subverts this, really. While he's not as action-oriented as Tony or Ziva, he's fully capable of handling himself, not even remotely a non-action guy. And on the other side, Tony, Ziva and Gibbs are all snarky as well.
  • Daniel Jackson in Stargate SG-1, although he becomes an action-guy after the first few seasons, and he is definitely not the only snarker on the show.
  • Alec Hardison on Leverage has this fairly often, given his two main partners for the various cons: Eliot and Parker
  • Darryl from Charmed is this. While he is a cop, he doesn't really stand a chance against magical creatures like witches, demons, and warlocks.
  • Once Upon a Time: Aurora. She's not a fighter, but she snarks with the best of them, even sassing Cora despite the very strong likelihood that she would die for it.
  • Stiles from Teen Wolf. At any given moment, expect him to either be snarking or avoiding getting caught in werewolf crossfire.

     Theatre  

     Toys  

     Video Games  

     Web Original  

  • Dr. Shelton from Darwin's Soldiers' is close to if not the purest example (There's a reason he used to be the Trope Namer). Almost every other character is firearm proficient, Made of Iron and has Nerves of Steel. Shelton can't shoot a gun, does the tech stuff, and lampshades every action trope that comes his way. As the series progressed, a few more non-action characters were introduced, but none were as bad as him.
    • Of course, after 6 years of Character Development, he's gotten slightly more action-y, and has done a number of things his early self would never have dreamed of attempting. Still counts because the World of Badass around him has gotten much more dangerous as well.
  • Cup from The Black Legion of the Dark Lord Sketch Melkor appears to generally be this, fitting in as well with the geeky aspects associated. She tends to not participate in the more extreme or strange conquests of Sketch, and sometimes even calls her out on them. Many of her comments regarding, well, anything, tend to be sarcastic. Subverted, in that she punched a guy out for making fun of feminism, and will stand up for herself, even if that means standing against the majority.

     Western Animation  


Never Heard That One BeforeOh Great, a Snark IndexNot Even Bothering with an Excuse
Noble Male, Roguish MaleMen Are ToughPrince Charming
Non-Action GuyAlways MaleNo Shirt, Long Jacket

alternative title(s): The Shelton
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