troperville

tools

toys


main index

Narrative

Genre

Media

Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
random
Playing With: The Man Behind the Curtain
Basic Trope: A villain reported to be powerful, ruthless and exceedingly evil turns out to be disappointingly feeble
  • Straight: The hero breaks down the door to Baron von Ruthless' chambers, only to find him to be an old man in a wheelchair.
  • Exaggerated: Baron von Ruthless is bedridden and on life support.
  • Downplayed: Baron Von Ruthless has a leg cast.
  • Justified: Despite his brilliant mental abilities, Baron von Ruthless has cancer.
  • Inverted: Baron von Ruthless is infamous for his mental abilities rather than his combat skills, but manages to put up an impressive fight against the heroes.
  • Subverted:
    • Baron von Ruthless' infirmity was all an act and he attacks the hero.
    • Baron von Ruthless may be stuck in a wheelchair, but it turns out he's still a powerful sorcerer who can put up a fight through sheer magical power, skill, and willpower.
    • The vaguely human-shaped mass of steel plates and spikes from earlier, who our heroes "learned" was a body double upon encountering the feeble old man before them, really was Baron von Ruthless, and the old man is just there to get would-be assassins to drop their guard while the real Baron von Ruthless closes in.
  • Double Subverted:
    • Only to find out that this Baron von Ruthless was a robot. The real one has been dead for years.
    • He's still a Squishy Wizard
    • The "real" Baron von Ruthless was working off a script, and our heroes' initial assumptions about the old man were correct.
  • Parodied: Baron von Ruthless has committed several heinous crimes and is wanted in several countries. It's revealed that Baron von Ruthless is actually a genius 10-year-old child working all of it from behind her computer.
  • Zig Zagged: There is another Man Behind the Man for Baron von Ruthless. He's not the the Man Behind The Curtain, but the man behind him is. And so on.
  • Averted: Baron von Ruthless is a brilliant roboticist and has built a suit of Powered Armor to aid in defeating the hero when he arrived.
  • Enforced: "How's this for a twist: Baron von Ruthless turns out to this sickly old man!"
  • Lampshaded: "You're Baron von Ruthless?"
  • Invoked: The heroes deliberately attempt to find out if Baron von Ruthless really is an old man in a wheelchair.
  • Exploited: The Heroes had brought themselves to their last legs fighting The Dragon and are saved by the fact that their opponent is actually harmless
  • Defied: Baron von Ruthless fed rumors of his condition in order to create confusion and doubt about his true abilities.
  • Discussed: "I can't believe this was the best the writers could come up with."
  • Conversed: "Why do most of these old villains think no-one will find out how feeble they are?"
  • Deconstructed: Baron von Ruthless' Start of Darkness is explored, and we find that it is becoming an old man in a wheelchair that made him evil in the first place.
  • Reconstructed: He's still an old man in a wheelchair though, and falls easily.

Back to The Man Behind the Curtain ...But never mind the man behind the curtain!

random
TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy
5199
5