Dude, get a clue.
A Wrong Genre Savvy Hopeless Suitor
who fantasizes that he's the Prince Charming
or Knight in Shining Armor
who will effortlessly sweep the heroine off her feet and rescue her from a life of dullness and/or misery... all the while ignoring or completely oblivious to the fact that the girl wants absolutely nothing to do with him.
Why can't he see that? Because he's either an egotistical hypocrite
long overdue for a Heel Realization
or he was Born in the Wrong Century
and his ideas of what it takes to woo and win the girl are outdated
and insulting. Contrary to what he thinks, she is not Playing Hard to Get
and she's not flattered by the fact that I Love You Because I Can't Control You
. Nevertheless, he insists he's the answer to all her dreams and hopes and desperately wants her to let him whisk her away to live Happily Ever After
, unable to see that he's not a welcome Prince Charming
, but an unwelcome Stalker with a Crush
This trope is similar to the more cynical ways to play a Dogged Nice Guy
; both tropes are about well-meaning, sincere love interests with wrongheaded ideas about what constitutes romance and how their object of affection actually wants to be treated. Compare with Casanova Wannabe
and Small Name, Big Ego
who exaggerate their skills with the ladies and have an over-inflated ego respectively.
Not to be confused with Prince Charmless
, which refers to literal princes.
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Anime and Manga
- Tatewaki Kuno from Ranma ½. Both of the girls he obsesses over can't stand him and clobber him every chance they get.
- Played for comedy, Kyonosuke Kaoru is this for Yukiji Katsura in Hayate the Combat Butler. She actually seems to have a fondness for him, but he seems to think he needs to sweep her off her feet which causes her to reject his advances.
- Played with in Fables with the character of Prince Charming himself; he genuinely is very good at starting the relationship he wants, but he's very bad at maintaining it. He has been married to Snow White, Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella, and in every case the woman fell head over heels for him (and he reciprocated passionately, if unsustainably) only to divorce him when he seduced some other woman who had taken his fancy. By the time of the main story, his long-term failings are well-known (to himself as well as potential partners,) so both he and any girl he seduces treat it as short-term. Interestingly, this ability to start things but not sustain them carries over into non-romantic pursuits as well; his campaign to charm people into electing him mayor is extremely successful, but he's completely out of his depth when it comes to the actual work or running Fabletown.
Films — Animated
Films — Live-Action
- Noah's Arc: Millionaire rapper Baby Gat is this to Noah, trying to rescue him from his "mundane" life.
- Ground Floor: Harvard is convinced that Jenny will eventually realize that she is truly in love with him, ignoring the fact that she only sees him as a friend and that everyone is genuinely put off by his attempts at wooing her.
- Jonathan Coulton's "The Princess Who Saved Herself":
Philip: Hey, beautiful. Prince Philip.
Princess: Oh, hi... Philip.
Philip: Yeah, we met at the ball. I was the handsome one. I was wearing a...
Princess: Hey, Philip. Tell me if this sounds like a phone hanging up. (hangs up)
Philip: Yeah, it totally does! Hello?
- In the Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends episode "Frankie My Dear", an imaginary Prince Charming is left at the home to be adopted, but falls in love with Frankie and tries to woo her. Unfortunately, he has to compete with Mac, Bloo and a pizza boy, all of whom have a crush on her as well. They all crash Frankie's dinner date with her actual boyfriend who turns out to be a jerk.
- Zap Brannigan in Futurama.
- Pierce Thorndyke III, in Beverly Hills Teens.