The problem is that there seem to be two definitions competing on the same page.
This trope seems to start out, quite explicitly, as meaning: "There is something crazy going on, and only one character notices it, while others act as if there's nothing strange going on." (Let's call this definition 1.) But the Laconic version says "The one rational character in a group of weirdos" (definition 2), which is much broader and about general group dynamics rather than a particular scenario. Towards the end of the description in the main article, it's hard to tell which definition is being talked about, but it sounds more like 2. Quote is definition 2. Page image fits both. It's also kind of hard to tell with all the examples, but they seem to be a mix of both definitions. Use elsewhere (say, the page The Hero
) that I've noticed before seems to always assume definition 2, but given how the beginning of the page looks like, that doesn't appear to be the original one.
I suppose one or the other definition should be moved into a separate trope, but which one? As I said, the second one seems not to be the original one, but it seems to be the way it's usually used, and the name sounds like it too. For the moment, I'll suggest making Only Sane Man
definition 2 and giving another name to definition 1. That seems like the change fewer people would even notice.
: Proposed solution: Change the definition to: "A character who contrasts with a group (s)he is in being relatively normal when the others are all or nearly all of them weird in some way." This is more like definition 2, but definition 1 can be counted as one kind of instance of it.
edited 2nd Dec '12 10:11:50 AM by VVK