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Playing With: Break the Haughty
Basic Trope: A character who thinks highly of themselves is broken by circumstance.
  • Straight: Bob is an incredibly arrogant CEO. After a few years of arrogance, his company has a misfortune that causes him to lose millions - and subsequently lose his company.
  • Exaggerated: Bob's an arrogant CEO who loses his company, his wife, his children, his bathtub, and gets tarred and feathered for everyone to see.
  • Downplayed: One of the company's projects doesn't do well, but Bob keeps his position and becomes more humble, learning from his mistakes.
  • Justified: Because Bob was so arrogant, he failed to see that a competitor was working hard on a product that would make his signature product obsolete.
  • Inverted: Bob's an incredibly humble office worker who, after years of hard work, is finally rewarded.
  • Subverted: It seems like Bob is due for a big fall, but he gets out of it at the last minute.
  • Double Subverted: Only to be broken by something else unrelated.
  • Parodied: It's clear that Bob's failure is attributable to outside influences (e.g. market conditions), but everyone still insists that Bob was crushed by his own hubris.
  • Zig Zagged: It seems like Bob's due for a big fall, but he gets out of it...but something else comes along to bite him in the ass...but it seems like he'll be OK.
  • Averted: Bob's arrogance is never called into question.
  • Enforced: "If there's one thing I know about writing TV, it's that the arrogant guy always gets his in the end!"
  • Lampshaded: "I was crushed by my own hubris!"
  • Invoked: Bob is reading a newspaper which highlights the inventions of his opponent, but he decides to ignore it because he thinks he's too skilled.
  • Exploited: ???
  • Defied:
    • Bob realizes how arrogant he is pre-breaking, and decides to start becoming a better person.
    • Alternately, Bob is able to see the various ways his arrogance might hurt his company and counters them, without actually being any less arrogant.
  • Discussed: ???
  • Conversed: "I was so pleased to see Bob broken, humiliated and reduced to smithereens! He was so asking for it!"
  • Deconstructed:
    • Bob learns too late that his arrogance caused his downfall, and isn't able to fix things in time.
    • Bob isn't haughty, but is misinterpreted as such by his peers, who then treat every misfortune that occurs to him as something he 'deserved'.
    • Bob's ego makes him unable to handle the sting of what happened, and he dedicates his entire being to 'avenging' himself by ruining the lives of those he feels are responsible.
    • Bob's downfall not only crushed his ego, but crushed his sanity.
    • Bob's arrogance has brought him down to the point where he develops a terribly low self-esteem of himself.
  • Reconstructed: Bob eventually realizes that he shouldn't be too arrogant...and starts becoming a nicer person or at least tone down his arrogance a bit.
  • Played For Laughs: Bob's company just happens to be one currently reviled by the viewing public. (Enron, BP, Halliburton, etc.)
  • Played For Drama: Bob is his family's sole source of income; his arrogance not only puts his job at risk, but their financial stability. His attitude also has impacted his children, turning one into a spoiled diva angling for her own breaking and the other into a nervous wreck.

Back to Break the Haughty

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