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One Extra Member
Billy Quizboy: Itís out! I did it! So, am I part of the Triad?
The Alchemist: Triad implies three, so...
Billy Quizboy: All right, then you guys have to pay my rather steep fee...
The Alchemist: Welcome to the mystical Order of the Triad, Special Brother Billy!
The Venture Bros., "The Better Man"

Just like a person has a name (sometimes more), most groups also have a name. This name may come from different sources, such as the founder's own name, an acronym of the members' names, a random thing you just happen to see, or a random cool-sounding foreign word. One popular method is to name the team after the number of members.

We can expect that the Furious Five will have five members, and the Three Templars to have three members. After all, it's outright said in the name, right? Not always. These groups often have one extra member in them.

The reason why this one member is excluded from the team naming varies. It might be because they're supposed to be a secret member nobody is supposed to know, or that their task is different than the other members, or they're another member's twin, or it's just for the lulz, or they just signed on late and it is just too much trouble to change the name to reflect the current configuration.

A Sub-Trope to Non Indicative Name. If applied to elements, see Element Number Five.


Anime and Manga
  • Witches 5 in the third season of Sailor Moon actually has six members. However, Cyprine and Ptilol are really the same person manifesting in two different bodies, so it's justified.
  • Played for Laughs in Cromartie High School. The Four Great Ones are the supreme rulers of the second years, but they have a big problem that troubles them all: there are five of them.
  • In Naruto:
    • The "Sound Five" actually counts Sakon and Ukon as one person, instead of making it the Sound Six.
    • As the name suggests, Rikudo Pain is a collective of six bodies representating six paths, but the vital aspect of the jutsu is the seventh path, who controls the other six paths.
  • Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo has the Battleship Five Quartet. It has six members.
  • One of the villainous guilds in Fairy Tail is the Oracion Seis (six prayers), made up of six very powerful mages. There is also the seventh member, Klodoa, who is Brain's talking staff. Also depending on how you see it, Brain's Superpowered Even More Evil Side Zero may count as the eighth member.
  • In YuYu Hakusho, there are the Sensui Seven, with the eight member Shinobu Sensui as the leader. The seven subordinates have The Seven Deadly Sins theme, so do Sensui's six other personalities.
  • In Beelzebub, there is the Behemoth's 34 Pillar Division... which consists 394 members! The number 34 comes from the 10 Pillar Barons and the 24 Pillar Generals. However, the leader Jabberwock is not included in the name, and Behemoth himself is not even a part of the division.

Comic Books
  • The original Seven Soldiers were Green Arrow and Speedy, Star-Spangled Kid and Stripesy, Vigilante, Shining Knight, and the Crimson Avenger and Wing. Wing, the Avenger's sidekick/chauffeur, was the "unofficial eighth soldier", even though there were two sidekicks as full members. When Green Arrow was removed from the line-up Post-Crisis, and replaced with the sidekickless Alias the Spider, Vigilante's sidekick Stuff, the Chinatown Kid was added, so Wing was still the unofficial eighth soldier.

  • The Three Stooges — there were actually 6 of them, though only 3 in any given short. (Larry, Moe, Curly, Shemp, Curly Joe, and Joe)

  • There are actually four musketeers in The Three Musketeers: d'Artagnan becomes one pretty early in the story, albeit assigned to a company different from the other three.

Live Action TV
  • On The Late Show with David Letterman's "Small Town News" segment, one of Dave's self-described favorite categories of news is things like "Classical Trio performs" with a picture of 4-6 members.
  • Inverted. Blake's 7 never had more than six human members. You had to include one or more of their sentient computers to bring the group up to seven.

  • The Grammy-Award-winning Girl Group Salt-n-Pepa consisted of Salt, Pepa, and DJ Spindarella - who I guess was the 'n'?
  • Similarly, Run-D.M.C. constisted of Run, DMC, and Jam Master Jay.
  • The band "The 4 of Us" has had five members at some points in its history.
  • Inverted by Ben Folds Five, a group with 3 members.
  • The Thompson Twins, a British New Wave pop band, had three members at the height of their success, and as many as seven in some years.

Mythology and Religion
  • The Four Gods in Chinese Mythology actually has five divine beasts. The fifth one is Huang Long, the Yellow Dragon that governs the element of Earth and the direction of center. He's absent in the Japanese version, where the center is associated with void instead.

Professional Wrestling
  • While on TNA Impact, Ric Flair decided to form a group in the vein of the Four Horsemen out of the TNA guys called Fourtune. Thing was, there were six members...eventually they renamed the group Fortune.

  • Opie And Anthony: And Jim Norton, who's been an official co-star of the show since 2002, but he's cool with the name staying The Opie & Anthony Show.

  • When the Big Ten Conference of the NCAA added Penn State as a member in the 1990s, they became a group of 11 schools rather than 10 (the logo they adopted after Penn State joined acknowledged this with an "11" hidden in the negative space under the arms of the T in "Ten"). The University of Nebraska became their 12th member in 2011, and in 2014 it expanded further with Rutgers and the University of Maryland—but they are still called the Big Ten.
    • And the Big 12 Conference currently has... 10 member schools. However, the Big 12 was founded by 12 schools, and stayed at that number before Colorado and Nebraska left in 2011.
    • The Atlantic 10 Conference has an ever-changing number of teams other than ten.note 
    • The Pacific-12 Conference is an aversion, as it's able to change its name whenever it gets new members. It was the first the Pacific-8 when it only consisted of schools in California, Oregon, and Washington, changed to Pacific-10 upon getting Arizona and Arizona State, and changed to its current moniker with the additions of the University of Colorado and the University of Utah in 2010.

Video Games
  • Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days introduces Xion, the fourteenth member of Organization XIII. She isn't actually a member. She's not even a Nobody, just a manifestation of Sora's memories. By the end of the game, she was Ret Gone'd from everyone's memories.
  • The Septentriones (septem = seven) in Devil Survivor 2. There are eight of them. The eight one, Alcor, is the only one not presented as a mindless abomination. He is the true identity of the Anguished One. He is the one that created Nicaea so that humanity can fight their fate of being erased from existence. In one of the routes, he even become a party member.
  • In EarthBound, the Runaway Five apparently consists of six members onstage, though there are only five of them when you speak with them backstage. Averted in the original Japanese, where they were the non-numerical Tonzura Brothers.

Western Animation
  • The Hive Five in Teen Titans have six members. Lampshaded by Kid Flash.
  • A Popeye cartoon "Jeopardy Sheriff" in which Popeye starts to read Swee'Pee the story of the Three Bears: Moe, Sam, Lefty, and George. Also referred to as "The three bears of which there were four".

Real Life
  • The Pleiades Star Cluster are named after the seven Pleiades sisters from Classical Mythology. However, there are actually nine bright stars in the cluster (the other two are named after their parents, Atlas and Plione). What's more, the star Sterope is actually two close stars sharing the same name. Finally, a look through even a low-power telescope shows way more than 7 stars. Given the motion of stars over time, it's possible that the Greeks actually did see seven "stars" when they first named it.

Omniscient Morality LicenseOlder Than FeudalismOnly Sane Man
The Notable NumeralNaming ConventionsNoun Verber

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