->''"Well, he can't outsmart me, 'cause I'm a moron!"''
-->-- '''The Giant''', ''[[WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes Jack-Wabbit and the Beanstalk]]''

A character too dumb to fool is someone who's completely immune to [[LogicalFallacies logic traps and fallacies]] because he ignores anything that he can't understand in favor of what he can. It's not his only advantage. He also doesn't manage to fool himself. If something is too simple to be seen, count on them seeing it. CuttingTheKnot is frequently suggested by such a character. And it's really, really, really hard to sucker him with ideological explanations.

Trying to [[BreakThemByTalking Break Him By Talking]] is a bad idea. He probably won't understand your attempts to undermine his confidence or self-esteem, and will merely tell you to ShutUpHannibal His best counterargument is to make you TalkToTheFist.

Often TheFool is mentally disabled, though he may merely be BookDumb. [[ChildrenAreInnocent Children]] can also fall under this; when the ConstantlyCurious child comes up with an ArmorPiercingQuestion, this often comes into play. Frequently the SpannerInTheWorks and the OnlySaneMan who can detect the DevilInPlainSight. Sometimes he [[DoesNotUnderstandSarcasm does not detect the sarcasm]] in the SarcasticConfession.

Sometimes produces the FearlessFool and AchievementsInIgnorance. It is not unknown for them to be able to ignore SchmuckBait.

May be impossible to distinguish from ObfuscatingStupidity. Often a {{Foil}} to TooCleverByHalf. See also DumbassHasAPoint, NobodysThatDumb, and YourBrainWontBeMuchOfAMeal.

The concept derives from the idea that [[SimpleMindedWisdom the simple-minded]] are CloserToEarth, and the conviction that CuttingTheKnot is an excellent solution to most complex problems. In certain circumstances, this trope relies on the idea that a certain kind of simplicity allows one to circumvent the need to figure things out in favor of knowing what things ''are'', even when this really ought to require some kind of metaphysical super-senses. This is one major way in which idiocy is turned into a DisabilitySuperpower; sometimes found in the case of the mentally disabled, as well. See also DisabilityImmunity for where a character is similarly unaffected, but has an physical, easier-to-recognize disability.
----
!!Examples

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* The revelation that [[spoiler:Xellos]] from ''LightNovel/{{Slayers}}'' is a Mazoku comes as a shock to everyone -- except IdiotHero Gourry, who noticed from the beginning and didn't say anything because he thought it was [[ObviouslyEvil so obvious]], surely everyone else had noticed too.
* In an early ''Manga/DragonBall'', a ninja tells Goku to close his eyes and count to thirty while he hides under a fake rock. This ''works''... until Goku forgets what comes after seventeen.
* In ''Manga/BoboboBoboBobo'', Poet's Circle of Memory Destruction doesn't work on Don Patch, 'cause he's ''stupid!''
* In ''Anime/DarkerThanBlack'', the WrongGenreSavvy, none-too-bright CluelessDetective is one of the only people to notice that that [[NiceGuy cute]] Chinese exchange student, [[ObfuscatingStupidity Li]], keeps showing up. Additionally, [[spoiler:almost]] the only person to figure out the Black Reaper's identity was a LoonyFan who was more interested in [[StalkerWithACrush stalking the hot guy]] than anything else.
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}''
** Something like this occurs during the Chunin Exam [[StoryArc arc]], when Sasuke comes up with a plan to figure out if somebody is infiltrating the group using a transformation jutsu. His plan was to come up with a very, very, long password. Later, when someone does come disguised as Naruto and gets the password right, Sasuke realizes that it's an impostor because he knew Naruto would never be able to remember the whole thing.
--->'''Sasuke:''' You'd have better luck teaching it to a hamster.
** Also comes to Naruto's aid during the first part of the Chunin Exams. The ninja candidates are given an insanely difficult written test, with the implicit understanding that what's ''really'' [[SecretTestOfCharacter being tested]] are their covert information gathering skills (i.e. being able to cheat on the test without getting caught). However, the way the test is set up is that anyone who lasts the entire testing period without being caught cheating and without too many wrong answers passes automatically. This means that Naruto, who was too dumb to answer the questions ''or'' realize he was supposed to cheat, gets a passing grade despite having a completely blank answer sheet. He didn't get caught cheating three times because he never tried to cheat, and he didn't have any wrong answers because he didn't have any answers at all; [[ExactWords the rules say you start out with a 100% score and lose points for wrong answers, rather than gaining points for right answers]].
*** Comes to his aid ''again'' later during the exact same test. This test involves telling the class that there is one final question, and anyone who fails it will lose the chance to ''ever'' become a Chunin, with no option to retest.[[note]]Which is actually a bluff, as the proctor doesn't have such authority, especially over other villages' ninja.[[/note]] You can quit ahead of time, at which point you'll fail and be allowed to retest again at some point in the future. Furthermore, if ''anyone'' in your 3-person cell quits, you automatically flunk with them. ''Everyone'' expected Naruto to quit, because he couldn't even answer one question before now. But, Naruto not only refuses to quit but inspires everyone who was thinking about it to stay as well. It later turns out that this was ''another'' SecretTestOfCharacter, as ninjas are expected to bravely accept missions even when they have no guarantee of success--or, indeed, when failure is almost assured.
* The race of Seiren from ''LightNovel/{{NoGameNoLife}}'' their could be codifier of this trope. Their stupidity is notorious enough for other race to use their name as an insult, synonymous with idiot. [[spoiler: However special mention goes for their temporary representative Amira who actually deserve her position even more than their Empress, simply because she ''knows'' and ''acknowledges'' she is dumb unlike the rest of her race. Thus she manage to outplay a Dhampir with more brain than her simply because they didn't see she is capable of it.]]
** To quote how they're depicted in this series, Seiren is only know how to sleep, eat, have sex, and play. Majority of them didn't even realize or even understand they're on the verge of extinction.
* In ''LightNovel/{{Durarara}}'', [[TheSociopath manipulative sociopath]] Izaya names this as the reason why he hates [[CharlesAtlasSuperpower Heiwajima]] [[HairTriggerTemper Shizuo]] -- the guy is just too thick (and too angry) to fall prey to Izaya's mind games. The fact that Shizuo returns the sentiment is only icing on the cake.
* In ''Manga/TheLawOfUeki'', BJ starts off trying to win fights by claiming to be Robert Haydn, which causes people to run in fear. While Mori falls for this, Ueki just remembers that BJ introduced himself as BJ earlier that day, and just can't seem to understand BJ's claims that his name is really Robert Haydn... and keeps insisting that he's really BJ. The fact that he doesn't even know who Robert Haydn is probably helps.
* In ''Manga/{{Eyeshield 21}}'', Riku of the Seibu Wild Gunmen realizes, to his horror, that Rikiya Gaoh of the Hakushu Dinosaurs is too single-minded to fall for his feint, on top of being too big and strong to have to worry about it.
** Although Gaoh isn't dumb at all- he's just [[AttackAttackAttack too unsubtle, blunt and single-minded to be tricked]].
* Yasuri Shichika from ''LightNovel/{{Katanagatari}}'' isn't exactly dumb -- but he has NoSocialSkills, with his only human interaction being his father and his sister until Togame came along and the series started. As such, he is barely able to distinguish between people, and when a ninja used an impressive technique to impersonate Togame, Shichika immediately punched him even when he didn't know who it was yet.
** Shichika has been on the receiving end of this as well. His first major defeat was against a [[SuperStrength super-strong]] little girl named Konayuki who had no understanding of combat and who just swung her sword around wildly. Shichika practices a martial art that focuses heavily on feinting and predicting your opponent’s moves, neither of which worked on her.
* Gon Freecss from ''Manga/HunterXHunter'' is too childish and naive to fool. In a game where he and his opponent had to light candles and keep them burning, he was presented with two choices. Pick the long one or pick the short one. His friends speculate that the long one could be a trap but the short one could ''also'' be a trap. He picks the long one because it would ''obviously'' burn longer. However, it turns out that it doesn't burn longer because the candle he picked was special and burned three times as quickly as the shorter one. His opponent eventually reveals to us that he hid several booby-trapped candles under his shirt and would've given Gon a booby-trapped candle no matter which candle he picked.
** And despite all the deceptions and trap-laying, Gon realizes that his booby-trapped candle is burning so fiercely that there's no way it could be extinguished short of running out of wick. He then puts it down and uses his superior speed to move in and blow out the enemy's candle himself.
* Adachi Hana from ''Manga/FlunkPunkRumble'' proves to be this. When a bunch of creepy monsters start scaring Student Council members while they're doing work at school overnight, and they sneak up on Adachi and Shinagawa, she simply assumes they're Shinagawa's friends because they're following him. [[spoiler: The creatures shout ''"Why aren't you scared?!"'' and reveal themselves to be members of the Occult Club who were [[ScoobyDooHoax trying to start rumors of school hauntings]] to get more visitors to their presentation at the next school festival.]]
* ''Manga/OnePiece'': Pirate Captain Monkey D. Luffy has displayed this sometimes, although he's also been fooled a lot. On one occasion his crew lamented that he was 'just the kind of idiot who would fall for that,' and were right, but when the chips are down, or just when he already knows the bad guy is a bad guy, he has used this trope. He's more often just Too Dumb To Confuse or To Distract.
* Tomo proves to be this in ''Manga/AzumangaDaioh'' - amusingly enough, [[CloudCuckooLander Osaka]] of all people is the one to run afoul of it. In an attempt to be called "Ayumu Kasuga" instead of "Osaka," she tries telling Tomo that she didn't live in Osaka for the most part, and lists several other locations she's lived. Tomo, being too stupid to remember these other places, just sticks with "Osaka" because she ''can'' remember it. If she looked at a map, though, she could just as easily point out that all of the other locations are just suburbs of Osaka.
* Nozomi Yumehara of ''Anime/YesPrettyCure5'' is a ditzy girl who stumbled onto the CallToAdventure due to her AttentionDeficitOohShiny Yet, in ''Anime/PrettyCureAllStars New Stage 3'', she's the first one to realize that she's trapped in a dream world and ultimately rejects it. Then again [[MeaningfulName her Cure identity IS "Cure Dream"]].
* Okuyasu Nijimura in ''Manga/JojosBizarreAdventure''. When Akira Otoishi disguises himself as a SPW employee, Okuyasu immediately punches him out, saying he planned on just punching both of them because he isn't that smart.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Board Games]]
* Many a chess grandmaster has lost games to beginners in simultaneous exhibitions (that is, when they're playing against several people at the same time) by setting traps whose bait goes unnoticed.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Card Games]]
* In {{Poker}}, there's the saying "Never bluff a monkey." While experienced players will fold if they think their hand isn't strong enough to call a high bet, a beginner will call almost any bet with a hand he likes, even if this hand is just strong enough to beat a bluff, if nothing else.
* In ''MagicTheGathering,'' a player keeping two Islands untapped implies that they have a Counterspell in their hand. Similarly, a player tapping all of their Forests except one implies that they are holding a Giant Growth. Sometimes, players will attempt to ''bluff'' their opponents by keeping those lands untapped even when they don't have the necessary cards in hand. This tactic works best against intermediate players, because beginners don't yet know enough about the game to know what two untapped Islands or one untapped Forest signifies, and expert players are usually able to see through their opponents' bluffs. Many a ''Magic : The Gathering'' player has seen a bluff fail completely because they didn't realize that their opponents were, ironically, ''too inexperienced'' to fall for it.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comics]]
* ''ComicBook/{{Nextwave}}'' has Forbush Man trap the team in illusionary realities that exist entirely within their own minds... only to realize too late that Tabitha escaped the ploy because she has no mind to control. One explosion later, Tabitha claims she got out of it because she's "clever."
* ComicBook/GrooTheWanderer has had his bacon saved by this on several occasions. In ''The Life of Groo,'' a comic special that covered his early years and first adventure, he was [[spoiler:facing an evil sorcerer-king who had imprisoned his parents; the sorcerer-king tried to read Groo's mind, only to recoil in horror, screaming "There is nothing to read!" Since this same sorcerer had been the one to make Groo mindless through a curse on his father, this was poetic justice.]]
** And who could forget his immortal line "Trying to fool Groo is like trying to freeze Ice!"
* In a 1996 ''ComicStrip/{{Dilbert}}'' comic strip, Dogbert tries to sell his services, updating the company's computers to make them [=Y2K=] compliant, explaining that [[MillenniumBug if something isn't done, then massive problems will occur when the computers think it's the year 00]]. Dogbert then says that his work is guaranteed for one year. [[http://dilbert.com/fast/1996-09-17/ It's here.]]
-->'''PointyHairedBoss:''' But why would I care? The year 00 is before I was born.\\
'''Dogbert:''' Amazing... You'd actually have to be ''smarter'' to do something ''stupid''.
* In ''ComicBook/WildCATs'', Tao (the Tactical Augmented Organism) is the ultimate manipulator, capable of bending anyone to his will with time. However, when he tries his tricks on Ladytron, they simply don't work. She spells it out for him: He can influence the way rational people think, but she's a violent, stupid criminal -- ''anything'' but rational.
** It's then immediately [[SubvertedTrope subverted]] when he switches tactics and uses effective ''emotional'' manipulation on her just long enough to take her out.
** Tao gets [[HoistByHisOwnPetard Hoisted By His Own Petard]] in this fashion again in an issue of ''ComicBook/{{Gen13}}'', when he is able to manipulate all of the kids (''and'' Helspont), but not [[DumbJock Grunge]].
* In the ''ComicBook/{{Age of Apocalypse}}''. The extremely dimwitted Sunder is the only member of Forge's resistance trope to realize the "new guy" is actually the horseman Mr. Sinister.
* Dumb Bunny of TheInferiorFive. "I may be dumb, but I'm not stupid!"
* Justified in ''ComicBook/BigTroubleInLittleChina'', this is the reason why only Jack can face the Seven-Faced Widow. Anyone more knowledgeable in Chinese mythology would have heard all the stories about her vast prophetic powers, they would be too afraid of her to call her bluffs, and would fall into her mind games and be driven mad. Since Jack only knows what he's seen, he quickly realizes she's full of crap and absconds with the {{MacGuffin}}s she's holding in short order.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fairy Tales]]
* In ''Literature/TheEmperorsNewClothes,'' all the adults in the crowd convince themselves that they can see the Emperor's non-existent outfit. Only the child is simple and uninhibited enough to realize, "The Emperor has no clothes!"
%%%% This is not the place for alternate readings. It's just for how the trope is in place in this story.
* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Youngest_son A staple of fairy tales]] is that the youngest son of the family is also considered a complete idiot, yet he still is able to solve the puzzles or win the contests that his older brothers can't.
* The archetype of [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wise_fool "The Wise Fool"]] comes from this. The Fool is too dense or deranged to follow social convention or worldly matters, but his harmlessness also allows him to say or see things the more conventional members of society would not.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fan Fic]]
* In [[FanFic/EquestriaAHistoryRevealed Equestria: A History Revealed]], this is used to explain how the Earth Ponies didn't fall for [[spoiler: Celestia's lies]] like the pegasi, because they were amazed by the fact they had working outhouses.
* In ''Fanfic/ChristianGreyVsPepperPotts'', this is essential the entire reason ''[[Literature/FiftyShadesOfGrey Christian]] is able to evade the Avengers and other superheroes for as long as he does. They're so used to using advanced tactics to track down evil geniuses and cunning villains that they're not at all prepared for an idiotic spoiled brat.
* In one ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'' fan fiction, Ukyo tries to keep Ryoga from a certain location by giving him a map. Of a different city. However, Ryoga's NoSenseOfDirection is so bad that the inaccurate map actually helps him get to where he wants to go, to Ukyo's bewildered confusion.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* In ''Disney/TheEmperorsNewGroove'', Yzma tries to rationalize to Kuzco why she's doing his job, but he doesn't listen because he has [[AttentionDeficitOohShiny the attention span of a goldfish]]. This is shown by [[PaintingTheMedium her dialogue not being audible to the audience either]] and replaced by Kuzco's internal monologue about Yzma's ugliness.
* ''Disney/SongOfTheSouth'': Brer Rabbit uses reverse psychology (also known as BriarPatching) to trick [[BigBad Brer Fox]] into increasingly [[CruelAndUnusualDeath elaborate]] murder [[FlayingAlive methods]] until he decides to do what Brer Rabbit wants him to. Brer Bear is against it and wishes to just "knock his head clean off''. While Brer Bear ist too dumb to even realise what the Rabbit tries to do, his simple thinking also makes him immune to the trick, while the [[StupidEvil Fox]] who is far from the sharpest tool himself falls into it.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]

* In ''Film/AddamsFamilyValues'', the main villain Debbie Jellinsky professes her love for Fester Addams through BlatantLies about her past (like saying she is a virgin while revealing her cleavage provokingly) and compliments about his sexiness, but Fester is too slow on the uptake to understand most of it until she just tells him she loves him.
* ''Film/{{Fletch}}''. When he's caught red-handed trespassing by a guard with a shotgun, the title character tries to bamboozle him with a line of patter: claiming to be Don Corleone, saying he's with the mattress police, etc. The guard (who's obviously not too bright) isn't impressed, and insists on calling the cops. Since it's one of the few times where Fletch's wit fails him, it takes a well-timed GroinAttack to get him out of hot water.
* ''Franchise/StarWars'': The JediMindTrick doesn't work on four groups of sentient beings: skilled Force users, species that are naturally immune (including Droids, but their sentience is debatable), exceptionally smart individuals, and exceptionally dumb ones.
* ''Film/GoodBurger''; Carmen Electra's attempts to seduce Edd into giving her the secret sauce fails because he is too dumb to realise she's hitting on him. Also he is too dumb to understand insults aimed at him.
* The title character of ''Film/ForrestGump''- a combination of being mentally disadvantaged, very swift on his feet, and [[BornLucky plain dumb luck]] not only keep him out of trouble (like drug addiction that Jenny and Lieutenant Dan suffered), but enable him to try strange, but ultimately successful, ideas that end up making him a very wealthy and mostly happy man.
* Played with in the 2007 adaptation of ''Film/{{Hairspray}}'', when Velma Von Tussle tries to seduce Wilbur Turnblad. She assumes that he is not responding to her advances because he's an idiot, but it's implied that he knows what she's trying and is deliberately ignoring her.
* In ''[[Film/RockyAndBullwinkle Rocky and Bullwinkle]]'', Bullwinkle is immune to [[BigBad Fearless Leader's]] MindControl television broadcast because he's too stupid to be affected by it.
* In baseball {{tearjerker}} ''Bang The Drum Slowly'', Creator/RobertDeNiro's character is described as "too dumb to play a joke on." This prevents him from being part of tegwar, a [[{{Calvinball}} card game with ever-changing rules]] which the ballplayers use to scam money from passersby.
* In ''Wit'', Susie the nurse is uneducated and simple in comparison to her brilliant colleagues and patient, but she alone understands human dignity, and no amount of philosophizing or cynical research or even inevitable death will take that from her.
* In a deleted extension of the scene in ''Film/XMenFirstClass'' in Soviet Russia where the team is infiltrating, the search dog that the checkpoint guards have still sensed that something was amiss in the seemingly empty truck. Charles says that the reason is this pertaining to his telepathic power on dogs.
* In ''Film/{{Valkyrie}}'', the plotters use the fact that General Fromm is inevitably doomed if the Nazi regime continues (due to not having reported their plot despite having known about it) to attempt to win his (crucial) support. Fromm however is too proud to admit this and therefore opposes the plotters, causing them to fail and him to lose his only chance at survival.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* Ford Prefect tries to [[MookFaceTurn con the Vogon Guard]] in ''Literature/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy1'' by appealing to his pride. The guard is too dimwitted to fall for it and is perfectly happy being a low-level grunt, stomping around, shouting and tossing people out of airlocks. He hopes one day to be promoted to "Senior Shouting Officer".
* In David Brin's ''[[Literature/{{Uplift}} The Uplift War]]'', a subplot has one alien ambassador trying to scam another by faking evidence of a massive coverup. The victim appears too simple-minded to spot the planted clues, (and too stolidly indifferent to be psychically induced to be curious), causing the hoaxster to wonder whether this is true idiocy, or a sign of deep wisdom.
** The target of the scam ''does'' pick up on the evidence that someone else seems to be shadowing their movements: the ambassador's confederate who is planting the false clues.
* In AvramDavidson's "The King Across the Mountains", the fugitive Crown Princeling of Scythia-Pannonia-Transbalkania tries to cover his identify with "diplomatic immunity" based on a seal filched from the Delegate of the Grand Mogul. This backfires with the rural constables of the Hyperthracian Hills, who are not letting any Mongols get past them.
* At the end of Creator/GrahamMcNeill's ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}} Literature/{{Ultramarines}}'' novel ''Dead Sky Black Sun'', the Lord of the Unfleshed tells Uriel and Pasanius that they should leave. They point out there are no passageways. He points out [[spoiler:that their enemy came in a inter-dimensional hell train, which is sitting right in front of them]].
* In Creator/SandyMitchell's ''For the Emperor'', Literature/CiaphasCain, THE HERO OF THE IMPERIUM, is trying to deliver tau envoys to their embassy. Having gotten through the hostile city, they find it surrounded by crowds. His aide Jurgen points out that the crowds are not hostile ''to Tau'', so they could just have the xenos ask them to move and go in the front door.
* In Creator/DanAbnett's Literature/GauntsGhosts series, "Try Again" Bragg seems like this at times, once replying that he would go over a cliff if ordered by Gaunt, and asking if it was supposed to be a trick question. For this reason, Gaunt points out that Bragg may actually be the smartest of the Ghosts.
* In ''Literature/SpaceMarineBattles'' novel ''Siege of Castellax'', the Iron Warriors plan to slow the Ork assault down with a minefield full of [[TheresNoKillLikeOverkill converted nuclear warheads]], hoping that detonating one will make them stop and think. However, rather than stop and wonder where the other "mines" may be, the Orks simply charge into five-miles-across crater left by the one they've blown up.
* Creator/TerryPratchett likes to describe characters this way in ''Literature/{{Discworld}}''. Detritus the troll, Fred Colon, and the Palace Guards in ''Discworld/GuardsGuards!'' have all been characterized this way at some point.
** Commander Vimes takes advantage of Detritus' nature to prevent people getting where he doesn't want them.
** The Palace Guards have been stated to be hired for precisely this trait.
** ''Discworld/ThiefOfTime'', where the story of the Emperor's New Clothes is mentioned, and the book then points out that the story ended before it got to the bit where the kid was beaten for being rude to royalty.
** Also seen in ''Discworld/MakingMoney'', where Moist tests his paper currency on particularly "slow" shopkeepers (although he does distinguish between "slow" and "stupid", with the implication he can persuade a stupid man of anything). If he can convince them, he can convince anyone. "Slow" here refers to mental inertia. These are men to whom new ideas are very dodgy. Not stupid (they can make wrong change as quick as you can blink), but set in their ways.
** A related concept is that children on the Literature/{{Discworld}} don't have a WeirdnessCensor, because they don't know they're not ''supposed'' to be able to see the GrimReaper.
** An especially terrifying example is the Hiver in ''Discworld/AHatFullOfSky'' It cannot be tricked, it's too stupid.
** In ''Discworld/TheFifthElephant'', it is suggested that one reason the Clacks is so efficient that it can function as a [[BambooTechnology Bamboo Internet]] is that it employs Discworld's gargoyles, who are good at watching and too uncreative to make mistakes.
** The picture taking imps are the same way; they're only intelligent enough to paint what they see, very fast. They can't paint what isn't there.
** Banjo from ''Discworld/{{Hogfather}}'' is far too clueless to follow the criminal gang's plotting, yet he notices that the bar suddenly has a waiter ([[spoiler:actually, Mr. Teatime]]). He also proves Too Dumb to Corrupt, as [[spoiler: he loves [[strike:Santa]] the Hogfather as much as a child would, so doesn't listen to offers of wealth that would make Hogswatch presents unnecessary]].
** Throughout ''Discworld/InterestingTimes'', whenever someone says they would rather die than betray the Emperor, Cohen [[LiteralMinded kills them]]. When the Silver Horde encounters a guard by the name of One Big River and ask him whether he'd rather die than betray the Emperor, One Big River (who isn't bright enough to see in terms of metaphor) answers, "I tink I rather live." The Horde, seeing value in a man too dumb to think in the empire's strict mental paths, bring him along.
** Apparently, it takes at least five minutes to explain anything to Mustrum Ridcully. His subordinates consider this an advantage, because it means that people will only ever bother him with ''really'' important matters. Of course, there are many hints in the books that this may be ObfuscatingStupidity, so it might be deliberate on his part for the very same reason... It's been stated that Ridcully doesn't start paying attention for a few minutes, because if someone's still trying to explain something to him after that long, it must be worth listening to.
*** ''Discworld/ReaperMan'' provides a possible explanation: it's not so much that Ridcully is stupid, but that his mind is like an old locomotive; it takes a while for it to get up to speed...but once it's ''at'' speed, it's going at a pretty good clip. It just can't be steered.
*** Note that it is for this precise reason he gets on with Ponder Stibbons: the young lad is always trying to explain stuff to him. So Ridcully will often listen to Stibbons more often then not.
*** Stibbons is also smart enough to know when to stop trying to explain and just say, basically, "it's magic". They're ''wizards'', and magic is ''what they're highly trained to avoid doing''[[note]]yes, this makes perfect sense, read the books[[/note]]. So this explanation usually satisfies Ridcully.
* Tom Cullen from ''Literature/TheStand'' is mentally handicapped, which makes him immune to the villain's array of mind powers.
* One of the murder victims in "East is East" by [[Literature/JohnPutnamThatcher Emma Lathen]] qualifies. [[spoiler:He can't understand the details of Midland Research's financials, set up to hide the money [=MR's=] founder is stealing from the company, so he just looks at the bottom line. Getting his head smashed in because he asked said founder to explain the financials to him is [[TooDumbToLive a different trope]].]]
* Heinrich von Kleist's essay ''On the Marionette Theater'': A top class fencer finds his master in a bear. The bear parries all the fencers thrusts because it cannot be fooled by feints and tricks due to its lack of consciousness and understanding. In a number of similar examples, the essay laments human consciousness (a consequence of the Fall of Man) as imperfect - as opposed to the perfect consciousness of God and the nonexistent consciousness of animals. The imperfect consciousness stands in Mankind's way to beauty, grace and happiness, which both God and the Animal can acieve (for different reasons).
* In L. Jagi Lamplighter's ''[[Literature/ProsperosDaughter Prospero Regained]]'', [[spoiler:Caliban]] receives the staff with the spirit of evil wisdom in it because he's too stupid to be corrupted by it; it only manages to raise him to a high normal intelligence.
* In Creator/JohnCWright's ''Literature/TheHermeticMillennia'', Ctesibius observes that the Savants had a plan that the Giants weren't smart enough to stop. Unfortunately, they were stupid enough.
** Menelaus observes at one point that his superhuman intellect makes him easier to fool, because he's more easily distracted.
* A sufficiently talented Illusion Weaver in ''Literature/KronikiDrugiegoKregu'' can convince someone's body that it was stabbed or burned, but most animals (like frogs) are too stupid to fall for this, so they don't really react even if you use the power to make them appear to be on fire.
* In [[Literature/SienkiewiczTrilogy Potop]], Roch Kowalski was tasked with guarding the good guys specifically because he's too much of a DumbMuscle to be convinced by [[MagnificentBastard Zagloba]] to change sides or let them go. But Zagłoba [[SubvertedTrope manages to muddle his brain even more]] - and he changes sides!
* A pretty grim version of this appears (and is discussed) on ''Literature/WorldWarZ'' by Todd Wainio as he's retelling the Battle Of Yonkers. He explains that the Battle was just a display of HollywoodTactics that ''would'' have scared off a more conventional enemy through "shock and awe", but the zombies (being literally brain-dead) only saw a huge amount of humans to eat and kept on coming regardless of losses and ignoring the massive explosions and gunfire that was going on around them. As a result, because the higher-ups decided to use weapons that were highly intimidating but lacked anti-personnel power and didn't arrayed the defenses better to suit the enemy (among other stupid decisions); the Battle instead became a massacre.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* This is essentially the premise of the show ''{{Series/Eureka}}''. Jack Carter is a regular guy [[SurroundedBySmartPeople surrounded by supergeniuses]], some of them a little evil. However, even when the bad guys have the entire town fooled, Carter always spots the detail that they missed. Carter also likes to apply common sense solutions to uncommon problems. And he isn't afraid of using SCIENCE! to get it done.
-->'''Jack Carter:''' I pay attention sometimes!
** In this case it's somewhat of a deliberate ObfuscatingStupidity. He's not smart enough to understand most of the super science principles at work in most of his cases, but he's still a competent investigator who can make logical connections between cause and effect. The fact that he's not AS smart as the rest of the town also means that the villains tend to underestimate him and spend most of their efforts trying to undermine the scientists rather than the "dumb" cop who ultimately ends up foiling them.
* Subverted in ''Series/TheTenthKingdom''. The village idiot repeatedly mentions that the dog Prince reminds him of someone, implying that he can sense the dog is actually the shape-shifted prince. Later when Tony asks him, it turns out he was thinking of a dog he knew when he was a kid, completely unrelated to the prince.
* In an episode of ''[[Series/ThirtyRock 30 Rock]]'', Kenneth turns out to be an ace poker player; "you can't read his thoughts 'cause he doesn't have any."
* In ''Series/TheOfficeUS'', Kevin, who had made it to the world series of poker, correctly infers when they are playing poker that Phyllis thinks her hand isn't great, but loses because she had a flush she didn't notice.
** In another episode, Michael Scott proves he's too dumb to fool when Andy is trying to convince Michael that Dwight is an incompetent boob. Every time Andy makes an attempt to talk negatively about Dwight, it goes right over Michael's head, including when Andy says that when someone does something dumb in the office, they say they "Schruted it." When Michael doesn't catch on, Andy points out that this is probably because of Dwight Schrute. Michael disagrees and says they're probably unrelated.
*** Subverted when Michael clearly states in his interview at the end of the show that he prefers Dwight to Andy because Andy is just a general suck-up while Dwight sucks up because he really believes Michael is special.
** Comes up for Michael again in the episode "Did I Stutter?". Early in the episode, Dwight strong-arms Andy into selling him his car for an absurdly low price. He tries the same thing on Michael later on to convince him to give Dwight "emergency power" over everyone in the office; the attempt completely goes over Michael's head.
* In one episode of ''Series/AllThat'', the guy who tries to degrade celebrities fails when the guy he's mocking is so stupid that he fails to realize he's being insulted. Cue an extremely hillarious VillainousBreakdown.
-->Announcer: I'M TRYING TO TORMENT YOU!!!!!! DON'T YOU WATCH THE SHOW!!??!???!"
* In an episode of ''SmartGuy'', T.J. found himself competing in a chess tournament he really wasn't qualified for. Marcus, feeling bad that he bet against his brother does his best to help him practice despite only knowing how the pieces move. Marcus was limited to moves that were so stupid T.J. didn't know how to respond to them, and in the middle of telling him this, he realized he'd found his strategy.
* In ''Series/TheIncreasinglyPoorDecisionsOfToddMargaret'', a terrorist family tries to con Todd into refusing payment for a large purchase by implying that it won't leave them with enough money for the mother's medication. They all turn to Todd expectantly, waiting for him to suggest that he accept payment later, but he just stares blankly back at them, too socially inept to read the unspoken request. After an awkward pause, they give up and try a second tack, which Todd ''is'' dumb enough to fall for.
* Gentaro Kisaragi, the protagonist of ''Series/KamenRiderFourze'', is a self-admitted IdiotHero who tries to befriend everyone. However, when [[SixthRanger Ryusei Sakuta]] tries to join the Kamen Rider Club, Gentaro shocks everyone by refusing. He says that Ryusei isn't [[ObfuscatingStupidity showing his real face]], and he doesn't want to be friends with someone who can't be honest -- and he's 100% correct. Later on, Ryusei becomes enraged with Gentaro and punches him, nearly breaking his cover, but Gentaro just smiles and says now they can be friends because that punch gave him a glimpse of the real Ryusei.
* ''Series/BabylonFive'': in the episode "Between the Darkness and the Light", when Garibaldi, Lyta, and Franklin attempt to gain access to the cell where Sheridan is being held in order to rescue him, Garibaldi [[spoiler: (having {{Heel Face Turn}}ed after {{Face Heel Turn}}ing) uses the fact that he was a recent hero to the Clark regime for turning Sheridan in in the first place]], to gain the guards' trust. He asks them "Don't you watch TV?" (i.e. don't you recognize me), to which one of the guards responds in a sort of programmed, deadpan-rote fashion: "I don't watch TV. It's a cultural wasteland filled with inappropriate metaphors and an unrealistic portrayal of life created by the liberal media elite."
* ''Series/HouseOfAnubis'' gives us Alfie. While he is more of the class clown than a complete fool, he is rarely taken seriously by the others. However, he usually solves problems and figures things out much quicker than anyone else in Sibuna, mostly in season 3. The others tend to shoot down his ideas, only to find out later that he was correct.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** In "[[Recap/DoctorWho50thASTheDayOfTheDoctor The Day of the Doctor]]," [[TheNthDoctor three incarnations of the Doctor]] devise a way to open a lock using a MyFutureSelfAndMe setup. The [[Creator/JohnHurt War Doctor]] (the incarnation between [[Creator/PaulMcGann Eight]] and [[Creator/ChristopherEccleston Nine]]) records the information in his sonic screwdriver, which decodes the lock over the centuries between the Doctor's incarnations so that [[Creator/MattSmith Eleven]] can open the lock with the data the screwdriver has already figured out by the time he meets his past selves...while Clara (who's not unintelligent by any means, but merely isn't ''as'' intelligent as the superhuman Doctor) just decides to open the door, which was unlocked the whole time.
** In "[[Recap/DoctorWhoS34E9Flatline Flatline]]," the psychic paper, which has fooled everyone except super geniuses, is defeated by Fenton, the supervisor of a community service program. This is possible because he has so little imagination that his brain can't picture anything on the paper.
* ''Series/{{Seinfeld}}'': Discussed in "The Checks" where George hires the cult ''Sunshine Carpet Cleaners'' to clean his carpet.
-->'''Jerry:''' So you're angry that this bizarre carpet cabal made no attempt to abduct you?
-->'''George:''' They could've at least tried!
-->'''Jerry:''' You know, maybe they thought you looked too smart to be brainwashed?
-->'''George:''' Please.
-->'''Jerry:''' Too dumb?
* The usual role of Alan Davies on ''Series/{{QI}}'' is to be the ButtMonkey who [[ContractualGenreBlindness always rings in the obvious, well-known, but incorrect answer]]. However, in later seasons, the show has taken to giving questions that are double-bluffs: the obvious answer is correct, but [[GenreSavvy everyone expects it to be wrong]], so only Alan rings it in.
* Jimmy Bond in ''Series/TheLoneGunmen'' has the personality and intellect of a Golden Retriever in a man's body, but he's also amazingly good when it comes to reading people's motives and being too dense to misdirect, skills that are more useful than they look in ''Series/TheXFiles'' universe.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Puppet Shows]]
* In ''Film/MuppetsMostWanted'' Animal is the only one not fooled by the impostor Constantine's Kermit impression. Apparently it's because he doesn't ''smell'' like Kermit.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Sports]]
* Invoked by Bobby Clarke prior to an exhibition game between his Philadelphia Flyers and the Red Army hockey team in 1976. Clarke is said to have claimed of his Soviet opposition: "They're always trying to play with our minds. But that won't work with our club. We've got 20 guys with no brains."
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* ''TabletopGame/{{GURPS}}'' has the disadvantage Clueless, which (as well as, naturally, some flaws) gives you bonuses against attempts to seduce you, among other things.
* ''RogueTrader'''s Navigators all have a power called The Lidless Stare. If mastered, it can instantly kill people who look into the Navigator's Warp Eye -- unless they have less than Intelligence 20...
** Note that the lowest human intelligence possible during character generation is 27, but that's only the player character minimum, and the [=PCs=] are high-powered in ''Rogue Trader''.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Exalted}}'' has Paralyzing Contradiction, a spell in which caster tells a {{Koan}}, and everyone nearby who hears it has to come up with a personal interpretation before they do anything. Unless they have intelligence 1 or less, in which case they're too stupid to realize there's a puzzle.
* Some compulsion spells in ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' have as a condition that the target must have a minimum amount of Intelligence (usually 3) to understand what you're trying to compel them to do. However, that isn't quite this trope because less than that is animal intelligence. It'd be like trying to hypnotize a cat.
** All compulsion and most illusion spells have an intelligence requirement of "some". Many creatures, such as undead and constructs (fantasy robots) can solve logical problems but lack a conscious intellect and are thus immune to mental manipulation, including bluffs and feints in combat.
** And, obviously, anything that involves manipulating a creature in a specific way (giving orders, etc) usually requires that it be smart enough to know your language... which can be an issue for perfectly intelligent, say, goblins or giants who simply aren't multilingual and don't get the common language by default.
*** This applies to both mundane social skills and spells; a caster with powerful mind-affecting magic or insanely good social stats can be paralyzed by sharing no languages with a weak-willed creature that should be their plaything.
** Though some other powers will affect only a stricter range of intelligence, sparing those who are either too smart or too stupid. For example, the 2nd Edition psionic devotion "post-hypnotic suggestion" only works on a subject with a score between 7 and 17.
** TabletopGame/{{Planescape}} also has the Clueless - basically the assumption that anyone from the Prime Material Plane is an idiot who doesn't understand how the planes work. There is a running theme in most supplementary materials, however, that point out that this can make primes the most unpredictably dangerous beings to deal with, especially from some worlds (like Krynn) where the lack of planar contact may mean they assume any planar is automatically a demon. There's also the fact that while planar factions engage in ideological struggles, it is the Prime where most of the belief that shaped the plane come from. The player guide in the campaign setting also notes that Clueless make popular mercenaries, since they don't have any factional loyalties.
* The Orks of ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' fit this trope. They cannot be fooled with a cunning tactical ruse, they won't attack an enemy's command structure or supply chains, they'll simply charge at whatever is right in front of them. This causes no shortage of headaches for many of the setting's centuries-old commanders, who [[DamnYouMuscleMemory can't break out of the deceptive warfare habit]]. It doesn't help that they sometimes mix it up with completely random tactics on a whim, which frequently results in AchievementsInIgnorance or a case of "WhoWouldBeStupidEnough". It makes sense considering the Orks' two deities, Gork and Mork, embody brutal cunning (hits you even harder when you're looking) and cunning brutality (hits you when you're not looking) respectively. It's a tossup which Ork deity's philosophy an Ork considers the best. The most dangerous Orks are the ones who are brutally cunning ''and'' cunningly brutal.
* In ''TabletopGame/CallOfCthulhu'', losing a certain amount of sanity in one go - as caused by say, seeing an EldritchAbomination or reading a Mythos book can cause temporary insanity... unless the Investigator fails an Idea roll... essentially, meaning they're too dumb to realize the full enormity of what they're just experienced and are thus saved some of it's horror.
* In systems like ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'', this is what happens if you have a character with a low Intelligence stat but a high Wisdom stat. They may not be very worldly or bright, but they will see things that everyone else is going to miss. The joke goes that Intelligence is knowing tomatoes are a fruit, wisdom is knowing tomatoes don't belong in a fruit salad.
** And Charisma is [[AchievementsInIgnorance selling a tomato-based fruit salad.]] It's called SALSA.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* The ''VideoGame/{{Wizardry}}'' series of [=RPGs=] uses this trope with characters of low intelligence (like Lizardmen). Characters with low intelligence aren't as prone to mental conditions or psionic (mind-based) attacks and effects.
* Played straight and then inverted with the idiot mutant Harry in the ''Videogame/{{Fallout 1}}'' game. If you're at all intelligent, nothing you can say will fool him into letting you past him. If you happen to be playing a stupid character (whether naturally so or temporarily so through abusing drugs) however, your answer to his question will be "Huh?" to which he will reply "Huh?" and after several repetitions of this exchange, the "conversation" will decay into idiotic grunts of laughter and then he'll let you pass.
* Beat from ''VideoGame/TheWorldEndsWithYou'' is like this. He doesn't get offended when people make fun of him... because he's too stupid to realize he's being made fun of.
-->'''Konishi:''' No analysis could ever plumb the depths of your fatuity.\\
'''Beat:''' Heh heh. Damn right!\\
'''Neku:''' Uh, dude... She's making fun of you.\\
'''Beat:''' WHAT!?
** [[spoiler:He's also the SpannerInTheWorks that causes Kitanji's careful and perfectly laid plans to fall apart, right when Neku seems to be doomed.]]
--->'''Neku:''' ... you thought you could predict what he does?!
* In ''VideoGame/BaldursGateII: Shadows of Amn'', your party encounters a con man who [[LandmarkSale attempts to sell him a planar sphere that's just materialized spontaneously in the Slums]]. While the dialogue varies between [=NPCs=], Minsc has one of the best: he declines because [[ConsultingMisterPuppet according to Boo]] (his pet ''miniature giant space hamster''), the sphere is not a good buy, because -- get this -- it's too big to fit in even [[TheBigGuy Minsc's]] pocket.
** Also, if a mage casts maze on a party member, a really dumb character will escape the spell before a moderately intelligent character.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Portal 2}}'', [=GLaDOS=] attempts to [[spoiler: kill Wheatley with a LogicBomb. ("This...sentence...is...false!")[[note]]donthinkaboutitdonthinkaboutitdonthinkaboutit[[/note]] Wheatley, however, is too obtuse to recognize it as a paradox ("Uh...true. I'll go true. Well, that was easy"). In comparison, the frankenturrets, ''Wheatley's own creations'', a combination of turret guns and '''boxes''', seize up upon hearing the same statement, and they're not supposed to even be fully sentient.]]
* In ''VideoGame/OrcsMustDie'', the Apprentice is the only war-mage left because he was the only one too stupid to realize how hopeless the conflict really is and too obtuse to give in to the Sorceress' offers. It's a bad thing that he becomes wiser as the game progresses, because with wisdom comes the realization that he and the rest of the world is pretty much doomed.
** He's so stupid that he's the only one to come up with the one guaranteed way to stop the Orcs. [[spoiler: Just close the gates that supply the magic.]]
* ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' with the Unaware ability ignore stat changes by their opponent by being unaware those stat changes happened. As of ''VideoGame/PokemonXAndY'', Oblivious not only [[ObliviousToLove prevents infatuation]], but also prevents Taunt from forcing them into using only attacking moves.
* Goofy falls under this in ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsII''. Upon encountering Disney/{{Mulan}} for the first time, it takes him a bit before he announces, "Oh, you're pretending to be a boy!" He not only saw through the disguise effortlessly, [[AchievementsInIgnorance it took him extra time to realize it was there in the first place.]]
** It Should be noted that of the 3 Protagonists, for some odd reason Goofy is portrayed as the smartest, whether or not this was intentional is unknown, but Goofy seems to be both the Voice of Reason of the group and the one who notices when things are amiss. Given how he was in various other media, this makes his actions in the Kingdom Hearts games rather jarring.
* In ''VideoGame/BlazBlueContinuumShift'' the resident BigBad has {{Troll}}ed part of the cast into such frustration that they've been unable to do anything about his evil master plan; he has [[BreakThemByTalking verbally]] {{Mind Rape}}d another part of the cast as a part of said evil master plan and he has [[ManipulativeBastard manipulated the rest of the cast]] into playing him straight into his hands... When [[CatGirl Tao]][[TheDitz kaka]] enters the frame, however, he finds that she's not only too stupid to notice that he insults her and too shallow and carefree to be lectured, she also has a three second/three steps attention span/memory combo, making any attempts at manipulating her a crash course in futility... Consequently, the Big Bad quickly decides that, in this situation, MurderIsTheBestSolution... Luckily, Taokaka's CoolBigSis busts her out.
* If you read the long, and highly extensive Wall in ''VideoGame/TheNeverhood'', you'll find a story about Willie Trombone, who is found by some monsters. The monsters assume that Willie is no fool, and that they'll have to trick him before eating him. Of course, Willie is a fool among fools, and each attempt to trick him gave [[HumongousMecha Big Robot Bil]] more time to come to the rescue.
* Chattur'gha in ''VideoGame/EternalDarkness'' (who is essentially DumbMuscle incarnate) has the advantage over Xel'lotath (whose entire MO involves illusions and trickery) because of this.
** Though he isn't dumb per se, he's very much TheBrute and is pretty much [[AxCrazy perpetually insane with homicidal rage]]. While Xel'lotath's power of madness wreaks havoc on [[EvilGenius Ulyaoth]], Chattur'gha pretty much shrugs it off and [[TheJuggernaut bulls right through her.]]
* The Soldier of ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' is a weird example of being both Too Dumb to Fool and Dumb Enough to Fool Everyone Else. A {{Cloudcuckoolander}} bar none, he often sees through deceptions and disguises (well, most of the time) in the supplemental comics, once sussing out Miss Pauling when she's in disguise when everyone else, including [[ItMakesSenseInContext a wizard]], was taken in by it. At the same time, he's managed to disguise ''himself'' as a robot and eavesdrop on secret robot meetings as well as misleading them into attacking incredibly obviously fake Mann Co sites he built.
** The Soldier could be said to be exactly the right kind of dumb for the world of [=TF2=], where everyone is a little bit stupid/insane in their own way, and his own brand of insanity manages to perfectly tap into those blind spots by accident.
* The protagonists of ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorneyDualDestinies'' come to the conclusion that Detective Fulbright was put in charge of Blackquill because he's too dumb to fall for his mind games.
* ''VideoGame/SpaceQuest'': Roger Wilco gets himself out of (and into) trouble ''because'' he's often not bright enough to lie, and prone to [[ManChild childish pranks]] and laziness. The people he opposes, like Sludge Vohaul, are usually TooCleverByHalf and tend to forget key details when running their big plans.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Animation]]
* In ''WebAnimation/HomestarRunner'', it was revealed that Homestar is the only character that realizes that The Thnikkaman is just Bubs in a PaperThinDisguise... although this doesn't stop him from inexplicably idolizing him like everyone else.
** The email "secret recipe" is basically about this, with Strong Bad's attempts to disgust other characters backfiring because they either ''like'' his concoctions or end up doing something even more disgusting. For instance, his plan to eat white chocolate while pretending it to be deodorant fails when he walks in on the King of Town [[ExtremeOmnivore eating deodorant]]. It concludes with Strong Bad tricking Homestar into eating a pinecone, at which he declares "So long, suckers!" and walks off looking pleased with himself. Making it even dumber, Homestar was the one who tried to trick Strong Bad into eating the pinecone in the first place, meaning he fell for his own trick.
-->'''Strong Bad:''' It's like, even when we win, he wins.
* Hadouken Dude's ''WebAnimation/FourSwordsMisadventures 6'' had a moment in which Green Link and a drunken Red are attempting to answer a series of questions. The last one, 'What's the quickest way to a man's heart?' was answered by Red as 'Chuck Norris's fist' Surprise surprise, it's the right answer! When Green asked him how he came up with the answer, Red replied 'Dude, Chuck Norris is everywhere...'
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'':
-->'''Horribus:''' Why can't we use his fears against him?\\
'''Psyk:''' The long of it is, he does not explore consequences in depth, so he has no unknown fears to confront. And his memories are limited, so he has no fears from his past. The only things he seems to "fear" stem from simpler things we would not ever regard.\\
'''[[TheDitz Torg]]:''' Hey, are you saying I'm [[FearlessFool too stupid to be afraid]]?\\
'''Psyk:''' [[http://www.sluggy.com/daily.php?date=980505 That's the short of it.]]
* Elan from ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick''.
** Elan is a little more complicated. He's pretty dumb, but he's also GenreSavvy. This makes trying to predict what he'd do in any given situation a crapshoot, because he could be too dumb to fall for the trick, too dumb to fall for it but decide that, for example, stripping off his armor before the big fight would be a good idea ''anyway'', GenreSavvy enough to see and avoid the trick, or [[ContractualGenreBlindness Contractually Genre Blind]] enough to see the trick but choose to fall for it. The one thing Elan can always be counted on to do [[RuleOfFunny is whatever's funniest.]]
*** To whit, he once broke Nale's brain through his abuse of a trope, claiming that he knows about it but knows that he ''couldn't'' know about it in order to preserve the trope's existence.
** The LotusEaterMachine plotline is sort of an example of this trope plus CharacterDevelopment. No one else realizes what's going on because they see themselves fulfilling goals that are both plausible and beneficial (stopping the BigBad, getting rich, etc.) Elan's greatest dreams, however, are implausible and ultimately childish (for example, his parents remarrying), and this clues his higher brain functions on to the fact that something is amiss.
* Mega Man and Bass in ''Webcomic/BobAndGeorge''.
* The title character in ''Webcomic/TheInexplicableAdventuresOfBob!'' is made of this. Perhaps most notably [[http://bobadventures.comicgenesis.com/d/20061219.html here.]]
* Bikke of ''Webcomic/EightBitTheater'' has earned this title. When Sarda tries to taunt the Dark Warriors with the fact they don't know how to actually ''use'' the Orbs, Bikke responds by chucking his at Sarda's head.
** Mind you, this does end up working in his favor. Sarda is so amused by his pluck that he promises YouWillBeSpared. Or at least ''suggests'' it...
** Similar thing occurred when Black Mage tried to use his hypno-vision on Fighter. It didn't work, and Fighter hardly noticed that he attempted it. Fighter comments that trying to hypnotize him won't work because he isn't smart enough to be hypnotized.
** Fighter even says at one point, "It may not be possible to fool me, 'cause of how smart I am." While his teammates discuss how best to fool him. And succeed. With the plan that he was listening to.
* Minmax of ''Webcomic/{{Goblins}}'' has his moments. It's especially funny when his teammates are ''trying'' to confuse him (ItMakesSenseInContext) and failing.
-->'''Forgath:''' Minmax, look up.\\
'''Minmax:''' Okay. ''*looks up*''\\
'''Forgath:''' No, no, the ''other'' up.\\
'''Minmax:''' Sorry. ''*looks down*''\\
'''Forgath:''' ''*{{Beat}}*'' We're going to die because he's too dumb to outsmart!
* This trope takes a serious turn with Izza from ''Webcomic/ElijahAndAzuu'', who is too stupid to understand the concept of lying (despite being a demon), and as such is wholly immune to optical illusions.
* In ''Webcomic/ZombieRoomie'', George and Hunter try to infiltrate a [[FantasticRacism Anti-Zombie group]] to save Robert. George pretends he's his own twin brother, Lucas and that he hates zombies because they turned George into one. The rednecks however think that he's one in disguise because they look the same and throws them in a cell.
* A ''Webcomic/CardboardCrack'' [[http://cardboard-crack.com/post/104383096138/i-block strip]] shows a player trying to make a subtle bluff and fail miserably because his opponent doesn't even know basic MagicTheGathering rules.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Videos]]
* In ''TheGuild'', Mr. Wiggly is admitted into the Knights of Good only because they need one more player and he is [[DungeonmastersGirlfriend Clara's husband]]. He manages to beat a powerful member of a rival group only because he does things so stupid that the enemy didn't think to defend against them. As he says "Sheer idiocy is my gaming specialty."
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* In one episode of ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'', Peter is able to realize a records store employee is Jesus, despite Jesus's disguise never having been broken before in 2000 years.
* In ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'', Fry is immune to the effects of the Brain Spawn because of his "special" mind. Special because he's [[MyOwnGrampa his own grandfather]], thanks to TimeTravel shenanigans.
-->'''Leela:''' Now when you say "special"...
* ''RockyAndBullwinkle'': Bullwinkle's own natural stupidity makes him immune to "Goof Gas," an IQ lowering drug. Later in the same arc, Boris and Natasha attempt to use it to attack the US Congress, but the inanity of the politician's political debates cause them to think [[TakeThat someone already "goofed" congress]].
-->'''Conngressman:''' We need to get government out of government!
** Another Bullwinkle example when he enters an elevator that says "out of order" only to fall in the empty shaft, but happened to contain the [[ItMakesSenseInContext hidden stash of counterfeit boxtops]].
** Also in "Missouri Mish Mash", Bullwinkle is taken in by Boris and the Hatfuls to be brainwashed, but they can't do it because "not enough brain to wash".
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons''
** In "The Joy of Sect", Homer resists the most powerful persuasion techniques of the Movementarian cult thanks to his negligible IQ and [[AttentionDeficitOohShiny attention span]]. [[SubvertedTrope Until they find a technique that's as stupid as he is]]: change the lyrics to the 1960's ''Series/{{Batman}}'' score from "Batman" to "Leader".
** In "Last Exit to Springfield", there was also Mr. Burns' numerous attempts to negotiate with Homer when he became head of the union for the Power Plant. Homer being Homer, he mistakes the innuendo Mr. Burns is using to offer Homer a bribe for ''sexual'' innuendo, and leaves thinking Mr. Burns is coming on to him. [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] at the end of the episode when Homer celebrates his victory for the union with an extended [[Film/TheThreeStooges Three Stooges]] esque "woop woop woop woop" leading Mr. Burns to comment that Homer might not be the master negotiator that he'd taken him to be.
** In "Homer the Moe", Homer took over Moe's duties as bar tender. When Bart tried his usual PrankCall, Homer ''immediately'' recognizes that it is Bart pranking him but is eager to go along. He doesn't get the joke however, even after Bart explains it to him, so Bart just hangs up in disgust.
** In "Dead Putting Society", Lisa tries to deliver the classic {{Koan}} of "What is the sound of one hand clapping?" to Bart. He simply slaps the fingers and palm of one hand together.
* From ''WesternAnimation/{{Squidbillies}}'', when Early walks in on his wife naked with the band .38 Special, and they try to convince him nothing is going on:
-->'''Early:''' .38 Special? How the hell you boys doin'!\\
'''Larry:''' Uh, we're just hanging out...\\
'''Early:''' Well, it says here on this shirt you're supposed to be playing up in Pittsburgh tonight.\\
'''Don:''' That shirt's from 1984.\\
''(long pause)''\\
'''Early:''' Hell, that ain't this year! What's goin' on here?!
* Luanne from ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'' tops this trope by being too dumb to brainwash when she accidentally joins a cult. Meanwhile, her Aunt, the KnowNothingKnowItAll Peggy, not only encourages her to go back to the cult after she escapes, but falls under their sway almost effortlessly.
* In an episode of ''TheWeekenders'', dimwitted Bluke figures out the answers to the clues for the scavenger hunt because he doesn't bother to think they're cryptic and complicated, as the main cast assumes... and nets them second place and a pizza -- which he similarly correctly realizes is a better prize than the first-place pool table, since the game was played by five-person teams, and you can't "split" a pool table.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheFairlyOddparents'': In "The Secret Origin of Denzel Crocker", it's revealed that March the 15th is the day Crocker is more of a SadistTeacher than the rest of the year and tortures all students in specific ways. While wondering what to do with Timmy Turner, he decided against using rhetorical questions (like he did with A.J.) because Turner wasn't intelligent enough to get frustrated by them.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Many magicians don't like having children in the audience, because they often don't pay attention to the nonverbal cues magicians use to distract the audience and notice what they're actually doing.
* There's a saying that goes "The best swordsman in the world only needs to fear the worst, because he has [[ButtonMashing no idea]] [[ConfusionFu what that idiot will do."]] This can, of course, translate to a wide array of undertakings.
* "Professionals are predictable, but the world is full of dangerous amateurs."
* In software testing, this is why some of the biggest bugs slip past QA (who know how the software is supposed to react and are trained programmers), and are found by end users who attempt something ''no one'' in QA would bother to try (like running a sprite through a wall) or completely ignoring all the directions given in the tutorial. This is where open betas come into play: ordinary users without a lick of programming or in-house testing experience are invited to try them and report bugs as they come across them, though this has been known to invite complaints from impatient users who expect open betas to be as polished as release builds.
** An example of this was from ''VideoGame/CreeperWorld'', where in the last level (where you're supposed to build a ship to destroy the [[GreyGoo Creeper]]) players stuck to the tried-and-true tactics of forcing the creeper back, capping the emitters, and activating the totems. It just took more time and units. This uncovered a bug in which the game ''couldn't end'' because the ship hadn't been built. This was bug was fixed, and a congratulatory message for doing it the hard way was added.
* This is also a concern in matters military. Several of the greatest innovations in warfare were the result of amateurs making war without the baggage that professionals had acquired over centuries.
* According to [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beginner%27s_luck The Other Wiki]] one possible explanation for what is commonly called "beginner's luck" is that beginners are not limited in their thinking to what is the "right" way to win, and explore wider possibilities. Of course, [[SturgeonsLaw 90% of these possibilities are terrible ones]], and the majority of the remainder are already codified as "the right way", but every now and again...
* Historians have often attributed Joan of Arc's military success, not to divine intervention, but due to her lack of knowledge of military tactics. While the English expected the French to continue with their regular pattern, an unprecedented full frontal assault completely caught them off guard. Later in the campaign they had adapted, and she suffered as many major defeats as victories.
* During WorldWarI, the Germans tried to lure a French force into attacking, whereupon they would be isolated and massacred. To accomplish this, they faked a hole in their security. This might have worked, had the French commander in charge of the area not been too dim to notice the weak point.
* During the second world war, MI5 did a deliberately botched operation on a German spy so that he would report back to his masters with false information about British interrogation techniques. The idea behind it was to make him look so obviously and incompetently subverted that they'd think that he must be the only one who had been compromised -- they had actually captured or bribed most or all of the German spies, but they figured if the Germans assumed MI-5 was that incompetent, they'd think the others weren't compromised, as they weren't giving such blatantly false information. It wasn't a total loss, as they did indeed fail to realize that the others had been compromised... but since they didn't even realize the decoy had been, the operation was simply a waste of time and money.
* People who consider themselves to be highly intelligent and perceptive can be suckered into scams and such things far more easily than one would suspect, precisely because they think that they're too smart to fool, and as a result, they simply can't imagine themselves falling for a scam, because getting fleeced is only for morons who couldn't spot an ObviousTrap if it danced naked in front of them, waved a flag with those words written on it, and performed a dramatic jazzy Las Vegas showtune song and dance routine spelling everything out in lurid detail. Well, scams are called confidence tricks for a reason.
* People with lower IQ scores are also generally more resistant to hypnosis or hypnotic suggestion.
* {{Seanbaby}} of ''Website/{{Cracked}}'' [[http://www.cracked.com/blog/7-great-occupations-for-horribly-stupid-people/ suggests]] that this is the deliberate hiring policy of the [[OverreactingAirportSecurity TSA]].
* This trope is why children under 7 have a higher survival rate if lost than children 7-9. They don't know how much trouble they're in, so they don't make as many dumb mistakes. Older children will know they're in danger and panic.
* Similarly, a very small child is more likely to survive a serious auto accident with fewer injuries in part because unlike adults, who will reflexively tense up right before an impact if they see it coming and hurt themselves more, kids will remain limp and be able to weather it better. This is also why drivers who fall asleep (either because of exhaustion, alcohol and/or drug consumption) and crash are less likely to be seriously injured since they're also limp at the time of impact.
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