Playing With: Cynicism Catalyst
: A traumatic event that makes a character more cynical than before.
- Straight: Bob became a cynic after his sister Alice was killed in a car accident.
- Exaggerated: Alice tripped and suffered a bruise on her knee, and Bob is barely the same person he was before.
- Downplayed: Bob became somewhat less trusting after Alice was brutally murdered on their birthday.
- The event with his sister left Bob traumatized; his new personality is a coping mechanism.
- Bob developed PTSD or other emotional problems due to the terrible experience.
- Bob believes that the accident was his fault, regardless of whether it really was.
- Inverted: Alice's fate makes Bob realize how precious life is. He becomes much nicer and less cynical as a result.
- Subverted: Alice is killed and Bob looks like he's about to have a Freak Out...but this turns out to be his Establishing Character Moment as The Pollyanna.
- Double Subverted: Bob ends up being blamed for everything by his parents and this turns out to be his actual Cynicism Catalyst.
- Parodied: Alice suffers some minor nuisance (like a graze). Bob is still traumatized.
- Zig Zagged: How much Alice's fate affected Bob varies Depending on the Writer.
- Averted: No one's personality changes as a result of physical or emotional trauma.
- Enforced: ???
- Lampshaded: "Bob's harsh, I wonder what made him that way..." "Probably a dead sister; Abusive Parents; stolen lunch money; something like that."
- Invoked: Bob's Evil Mentor Claire arranges for Alice to have a tragic accident to toughen Bob up.
- Exploited: Claire guesses that Bob's cynicism is down to some tragic event, looks into his past and finds out about Alice. She uses this knowledge to manipulate him.
- Defied: Bob vows not to let Alice's accident get to him.
- Discussed: "How's Bob doing?" "I'm worried about how this might change him..."
- Conversed: "Oh look, a cynical brooding character. I bet he'll have an episode devoted to whatever upset him so much".
- Implied: Bob is seen brooding over...something. How much it has to do with his attitude isn't explored.
- Bob's cynical personality is the result of him selfishly pushing other people away to avoid being hurt in the same way again.
- Bob's cynical personality only shows that he is not strong-willed enough to deal with the problems of the world.
- Reconstructed: Bob has made (or makes) peace with his past, but the event still marks the point where his younger, more naive, self "grew up".
- Plotted A Good Waste: Bob is given a tragic backstory to avoid letting his cynical behavior make him less sympathetic.
- Played For Laughs: Bob's guilt over the incident is shown as disproportionate and it being brought up brings up many Not So Stoic moments.
- Played For Drama: Bob is a tortured, sad, soul who hides behind bitterness. Said bitterness makes people who're unaware of his backstory distrust him and leads to many tragic misunderstandings.
Back to Cynicism Catalyst
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