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Playing With: Straw Vegetarian
Basic Trope: The stereotypical vegetarian or vegan Stock Character.
  • Straight: Alice does not eat meat, and is always whining about the fact that other characters do.
  • Exaggerated: Alice doesn't eat anything, because she believes all life is sentient.
  • Downplayed: Alice is a vegetarian, but only because going meatless is the trendy "it" diet this week. Next week, it'll be paleo, and the week after that she'll be on the grapefruit diet.
  • Justified:
    • Alice is a member of an Animal Wrongs Group, or other environmental group.
    • Alice can't eat meat for medically-diagnosed health reasons.
    • Alice has to abstain from meat for religious reasons.
  • Inverted: In a setting where all or most other characters are vegetarians or vegans, Alice eats meat, and whines about others not doing so.
  • Subverted:
    • Alice is seen eating fish or poultry.
    • Alice doesn't whine about other characters eating meat.
    • Alice isn't a vegetarian or vegan, just a picky eater.
    • Alice can't eat meat because of a medical condition; doctor's orders.
    • Alice is not a vegan or vegetarian, but she's on some other restrictive diet (macrobiotic, low-carb, gluten-free, fruitarian, ketogenic, raw-foodist, organic-only, what have you)
  • Double Subverted:
    • She still claims that she's a vegetarian, but that fish or poultry don't count as "meat."
    • But she does try to persuade them to eat less of it because it's better for the environment, or animal rights, or for health reasons.
    • Which annoys other characters, who have to prepare a separate dish just for her when they invite her over for dinner.
    • That "medical reason" was self-diagnosed after Alice read an article online, or watched The Doctor Oz Show.
    • She's still constantly bragging about her diet, trying to "convert" other characters, etc.
  • Parodied:
    • Someone mentions Alice's strict diet of mushroom broth, and asks her how she's feeling. Alice replies, "Real sick...but proud of myself!"
    • Bob, an Extreme Omnivore, attempts to convince people to stop eating one very specific food item.
  • Zig Zagged: Sometimes Alice harangues others about meat, sometimes she doesn't.
  • Averted:
    • No one attempts to "convert" anyone else's diet.
    • The characters' diets are never mentioned.
  • Enforced: Acceptable Targets
  • Lampshaded: "I don't eat animals because it's wrong. I only eat spinach."
  • Invoked: A vegetarian or vegan group disseminates literature about how a meatless diet is the only natural or healthy way for humans to eat.
  • Exploited: Betty asks Alice to join her Free the Frogs cause, which Alice does.
  • Defied: Alice decides that giving up meat is too big a sacrifice, and so does not.
  • Discussed: "Why would I care whether you guys eat meat? I went off it for health reasons, not to save the planet."
  • Conversed: "Why does Alice beg her friends to go vegetarian? It's obvious they're not going to."
  • Deconstructed: Alice starts to lose friends because they'd rather have their meat than be her friend.
  • Reconstructed:
    • Alice finds new friends who are vegetarians or don't care about Alice's ways.
    • Alice's friends all remain friends with her despite her diet.

Back to Straw Vegetarian

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