->''"While a sucker is born with each tick of the clock, a cheater is born with each tock betwixt."''
-->--'''Doc Scratch, Homestuck'''


Looks like there's a sting operation going on! The Mark is a role in TheCon, the ''target'' of TheTale. To a great extent the nature of the mark defines whether the ConMan is operating as a {{Trickster}} who is initiating an awakening, or is simply a {{Villain}}.

See also ShortCon and FakeMark.

----
!!Examples:

[[AC:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
* Satou in ''Anime/WelcomeToTheNHK'' finds himself as one at the hands of Kobayashi.

[[AC:{{Film}}]]
* Janet Colgate is the Mark that the two Con Men bet over in ''Film/DirtyRottenScoundrels''. [[spoiler: Oops! She was playing them both.]]
* Penelope is the mark in ''Film/TheBrothersBloom''.
* The [[OceansEleven Ocean's Trilogy]] - Benedict in Eleven, Bank in Thirteen.
* Fisher is the mark in ''{{Inception}}''.
* Doyle Lonnegan in ''Film/TheSting''.
* Margaret in ''Film/HouseOfGames''.

[[AC:{{Literature}}]]
* The ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' novel ''Going Postal'' is essentially a battle between two conmen. To the villain, [[CorruptCorporateExecutive Reacher Gilt]], TheMark is the entire city of Ankh-Morpork, and the other members of the board of the Grand Trunk Semaphore Company. To the hero, [[LoveableRogue (mostly) reformed conman]] Moist von Lipwig, the mark is Reacher Gilt.
** In his next appearance, ''Making Money'', Moist has moved up to making the city his mark -- with the trick being that the "con" is moving them from the gold standard to paper money. He's not entirely certain if this is because is ''is'' a con, or if he [[WhenAllYouHaveIsAHammer just thinks that way]], or if a con believed by enough people for long enough [[ClapYourHandsIfYouBelieve becomes something else entirely]].
* There's an interesting short story by Creator/AndrewVachss in which TheMark turns out to be the New York City judiciary system. The ConMan appears to have stolen a bag from someone in an airport, but the person who entered with the bag and the witness both vanish, he produces the receipt, sues the state for false arrest, and gets a substantial amount of money.

[[AC:LiveActionTV]]
* For the most part, TheMark in ''Series/MissionImpossible'' episodes using TheCon was a villain being duped into admitting his guilt. This would put the ConMan of that episode into the {{Tricksters}} category.
* There was one of these on every episode of ''Series/{{Hustle}}'', but it wasn't always who you thought it was. However, they always made great play of the fact that TheMark was always thoroughly deserving of being fleeced. Just in case anyone thought that conning people might be bad, m'kay?
* There was a double subversion in the flashbacks of the ''Series/{{Lost}}'' episode "The Long Con"; TheMark, a woman named Cassidy, sees through Sawyer's con game and demands that she become his partner. However, in the end, she still ends up being duped out of 600,000 dollars; it just takes significantly longer to do it.
* Usually the antagonist of the week in ''Series/{{Leverage}}''.

[[AC:ProfessionalWrestling]]
* In professional wrestling, a "mark" refers to anyone who watches pro wrestling but does not have a job in the business of it. They were called as such because the goal of the "smarts", the people who did work in the business, was to make the marks believe the pro wrestling bouts were not cooperative. After {{kayfabe}} was exposed, the term "{{smart mark}}" developed among some who now thought they knew what was going on, even though they still did not actually work in the business. Some find "smart mark" [[KnowNothingKnowItAll pretentious]] and mark a GrandFatherClause but some have embraced the term, Smart Mark video being a good source for fans who want to see matches and interviews, for instance.
* While Wrestling/{{Sting}} is not a mark in the professional wrestling sense, his FanNickname, "[[GoodIsDumb The Dumbest Man In Professional Wrestling]]", is in reference to him being a mark in the broader sense of the word. While in Wrestling/{{WCW}} he put his trust in Wrestling/TheFourHorsemen, twice!
* [[Wrestling/MickieJames Alexis Laree]] had no idea just how much Lexie Fyfe did not like her but the PGWA officials who listed her on the poll and the fans who voted her number one contender to the PGWA title held by Fyfe? They knew.
----