I'm going to kill your daughter, Sophie
. But only one of them. Now, which one should I— Sophie:
The ugly one.
Someone is faced with a difficult choice, perhaps a Sadistic Choice
. They will undoubtedly need to spend a few moments thinking it over, perhaps Wangsting
a little, and—
Oh, they already decided. That was quick.
This trope is when a character responds far more quickly to a decision than the viewer or the other characters expect, usually played for comedy
. Maybe it's a choice you'd think would be difficult, but the character knows what they want without even having to think about it. Or maybe, even if the choice isn't difficult, you still expect them to take a moment to phrase their response in a polite way, but they instead respond with incredible bluntness
. Sometimes characters won't even let someone finish listing the options before automatically making their choice. This response can be shown as good or bad depending on the circumstances and the writer's whim.
open/close all folders
- In Golden Eye, the villain has the Damsel in Distress at gunpoint and says he'll shoot her if Bond doesn't surrender. Bond's response: "Kill her; she means nothing to me." Subverted a few scenes later, when he reveals he was just calling the other's bluff; then parodied later still when their positions are reversed and she says this of him.
- In Hot Chocolate Between Times when Marcus is given 2 years to decide if he wants to trade his soul for Reset Button powers.
- Animorphs has a non-sadistic version when the group is stuck on Leera due to a morph accident, and are being snapped back to Earth one at a time. The Andalite commander needs an infiltration team to enable a continent-destroying bomb, in the dark, in the middle of enemy territory.
Galuit turned to speak to Prince Jake.
"Yes," Prince Jake said.
<You say yes without knowing what I'm asking.>
"Will it save the Leerans? Will it keep them free? And most of all, will it hurt the Yeerks?"
<Yes to all three. Especially the last. If we save Leera it may turn the tide of the war against the Yeerks.>
"Then we'll do it."
Galuit seemed surprised. Maybe even impressed. In private thought-speak he said to me, <I have known worse princes than this one.>
Live Action TV
- In Firefly, Zoe picks her husband, Wash, before Niska can even offer the Sadistic Choice between him and Mal. "I'm sorry, you were going to ask me to choose, right?"
- And when faced with a hostage situation, Mal puts a bullet in the man's head without breaking stride.
- In an episode of Angel, Wesley's father shows up and turns out to be a bad guy. Even after this revelation, Wesley can't bring himself to shoot his dad. But the instant his father points a gun at Fred, Wes shoots him seven times before he can even finish the threat. It turns out that was just a robot designed to look like Wesley's dad, but Wes didn't know that.
- When Faith takes up a contract on Angel, she offers him a gun to make things interesting; Angel immediately shoots her in the leg. Unfortunately It Works Better with Bullets.
- How I Met Your Mother did the rude variant when Robin found an engagement ring in her champagne and thought Ted was proposing to her. "No. No no no no no. Ted, you cannot do this to me. No! No no no!"
- The gang is discussing whether they'd give up sex or food if they had to. Monica instantly shouts "Sex!" Her boyfriend Chandler can only say "Seriously, answer faster!"
- Phoebe uses the Quick Draw Decision to get at what you really want, even if you don't know you want it. Joey doesn't know whether he wants to take the north or south route to Las Vegas.
Phoebe: Which do you like better, peanut butter or egg whites?
Joey: Peanut butter!
Phoebe: Which would you rather be, a fireman or a swimmer?
Joey: A swimmer!
Phoebe: Who would you rather sleep with, Monica or Rachel?
Joey: Monica. Oh...huh, I always thought it would be Rachel.
Phoebe: No thinking! No thinking! Tie or ascot?
Phoebe: North route or south route?
Joey: North route!
Phoebe: Bam! There you go!
- Joey then tries this with Ross, with disastrous results...mostly because he reused Phoebe's "who would you rather sleep with" question.
- One Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series episode also uses the rude variant. Yugi asks Tea if she might ever possibly consider going out on a date with him. "Never in a million years. Why?"