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Tagalong Reporter
An Intrepid Reporter or other type of storyteller is looking for something sensational. He overhears a conversation, or bump into the heroes, and decide to join them, either to tell their adventures or to use them as his bodyguards to learn more about the Big Bad, the Artifact of Doom or The Conspiracy.

A subtrope of the more general Tagalong Chronicler. He or she will usually do little to no fighting, simply staying behind and filming / taking notes / commenting the fights. They can also develop into a more active role as a Sidekick or even a Deuteragonist. These Characters often turn out to be Narrator All Along.

Examples

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     Anime & Manga  

  • Okamura from Blood+ follows the main characters all around the world.
  • Diethard joins the Black Knights from Code Geass solely because he finds Lelouch interesting.
  • In Monster, Grimmer joins up with Dr. Tenma in order to figure out what was going on at the Red Rose Mansion—while he is a traveling freelance journalist, his actions are for personal reasons as he was part of Bonaparta's child experimentation going on there.
  • The anime adaptation of Toriko adds a news reporter called Tina. Her main role being to serve as the host in the end of show segments.
  • Alexa in the Decolora Islands arc of Pokémon Best Wishes. Although she always seems to have to go do something and misses most of the episode.

     Film  

  • Big Trouble in Little China. Gracie Law tries to get aspiring Intrepid Reporter Margo Litzenberger to write a story about David Lo Pan's criminal activities. The reporter goes along with the group in the attempt to free Miao Yin from the White Tiger brothel.
    Margo: God, it's creepy. Do we have to go in? Because I will, if we have to. I'll go anywhere or do anything to get my story. It's my big break.
  • Five Weeks in a Balloon (inspired by the Jules Verne novel). The crew includes Donald O'Shea (Red Buttons), who is sent along to write about the expedition and act as an impartial witness if they succeed in beating the slavers to the unclaimed territory.
  • Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow. Intrepid Reporter Polly Perkins insists on going along with the title character in search of whoever's behind the giant robot attacks.
  • In The Great Race, Maggie DuBois sets out to be a tagalong reporter, but when neither Professor Fate nor The Great Leslie will take her with them, she enters her own car in the race. Ends up being a tagalong reporter through most of the race anyway, with one group or the other, when her car breaks down.
  • In The Green Berets John Wayne takes a wimpy liberal pacifist reporter along ot prove how awesome the Berets are and the importance of fighting (and winning) The Vietnam War.
  • Joe Galloway in We Were Soldiers, who we first see downing his drink before he hitches a ride on a helicopter headed for the battlefield. He spends the rest of the film taking photos of the fighting and trying to stay alive.
  • The Thing from Another World: In the opening scene Ned Scott, a journalist meets the Air Force protagonist and decides to do a story about the "downed aircraft". Later on it becomes something of a Running Gag that amidst the in-fighting over what to do about "The Thing" (protect the world by destroying it or try to communicate with and understand it) he just wants to get a photo of the monster (and repeatedly joins several armed searches for the Thing solely for this purpose). He does still get to say the memorable final words of the film, though.
  • Das Boot: Lt. Werner is on U-96 as a war correspondent for the express purpose of chronicling the crew's exploits.

     Literature  

  • The sci-fi novel Embedded puts an interesting twist on this trope, as the reporter in question is not physically present in the hostile area, but tagging along via Brain Uploading.
  • Edward Malone in The Lost World.
  • In Michael Connelly novels Jack McEvoy is this, twice becoming involved in FBI investigations of serial killers. Partially this is due to his relationship with FBI agent Rachael Walling. Minus the relationship, there is an element of truth to this as Connelly himself was a former reporter working the crime beat.

     Live Action TV  

  • Brodie on Homicide: Life on the Street starts out as a TV news intern and ends up being a "crime scene recorder", getting videotape of crime scenes and the crowds around them.
  • Quantum Leap: Sam leaps into a member of his brother's Navy SEAL squad in Vietnam, and there's a female photojournalist embedded with them. Sam has to make a choice between saving her or his brother.
  • Jake Sisko on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine stays on the station as a combat reporter on the Dominion War when the rest of the Federation citizens had evacuated. Since his father is one of the leaders of the anti-Dominion forces, it's pretty clear where his sympathies lie.

     Real Life  

     Tabletop RPG  

  • The Shadowrun supplement Shadowbeat mentions this as a way of including a Reporter character on a shadow team's missions, as either a PC or NPC. One of the short stories has a video reporter tagging along on a mission to bring badly needed medical supplies to an underground group that's suffering from disease.

     Video Games  

  • Albert Genette, The Narrator of Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War, follows the Wardog Squadron even after they are branded as traitors and officially killed during their escape (Genette "killed" along with them). Kinda ironic how he made the Wardogs famous with his articles, yet was denied the right to report the final, most important missions they flew as the Ghosts of Razgriz.
  • Frederick Lancaster winds up working for the Canyon Crows in Front Mission after interrupting one of their missions looking for a scoop. Unusually for this trope, you have the option of putting him on the front line and making him fight alongside your other soldiers, since Front Mission is a Humongous Mecha game.
  • Full Spectrum Warrior: Ten Hammers has a tagalong reporter for at least the first mission.
  • Guild Wars has this is the form of Shing Jea Sherman who follows the player and his/her party and other players and spouts out random quotes mostly concerning of the various titles and achievements. Even his main dialogue window exemplifies this trope, "I'm working on a new piece for the Monastery Gazette. A sexy exposé on all things adventurous. I can tell by your smell that you're on a mission...or out of soap. How I would love to follow you on your exploits. Watch you destroy your enemies with ruthless impunity; witness how you scrub those tough-to-clean blood stains off your armor. Allow me the privilege to tag along and observe, would you?"
  • In Illbleed, Jorg Baker is a newspaper investigator who came to cover the titular theme park but gets caught up in Chapter 5's events. He quickly realizes that he's in over his head and simply follows the player character through the chapter as a detective. Afterwards, he becomes a playable character too.
  • In Manhunt, a journalist accompanies you during an Escort Mission. After you lead her safely to her apartment, she promises to break the story about your treatment at the hands of Big Bad Starkweather.
  • Kylie Koopa in Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time.
  • Diana Allers in Mass Effect 3, who is considered a War Asset if allowed to tag along on the Normandy and report on its crew's battles. Justified in her case in that she is member of a military-sanctioned news network and actually requests permission to join Shepard.
  • Suikoden V: Taylor is a reporter who can be receuited for Frey's army. You'll first find him questioning the guards outside (note: your castle must be lvl. 2 or higher for this event). He'll then ask to use different areas of of the castle for interviews, agree each time (four in all) and he'll join you. From then on he chronicles the war against the Godwins. You can even read each issue (they're posted in the restaurant area) at your leisure.
  • Carley in The Walking Dead video game. She is also an Action Girl who learned how to shoot while an embedded reporter.
  • Ms. Ellet, the war correspondent that befriends Squad 7 in Valkyria Chronicles.
  • Happened in one Sky Dancers episode. In a bit of playing the trope for drama, the reporter's insistence on interviews meant the Sky Dancers arrived too late to help people being menaced by Skyclone.
  • Project X Zone has Ulala show up in one level (titled "Ulala's Swingin' Report Show", appropriately enough), only to then force herself into your party once she sees how many celebrities are in it. Thankfully, she can actually fight pretty well, as fans of her own series can attest.

     Web Comics 
  • Roger Evers in Genocide Man is a blogger for "Undercentral News" who started following Jacob Doe around in an attempt to film a documentary. Unfortunately that makes him almost as big a target as Jacob himself, especially after his editor hacked some drones that were attempting to kill them.

     Western Animation  


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