• 0 Apr 8th, 2018 at 4:04PM
    I'm working on works pages for the novella Women Without Men (as well as The Film of the Book) and I could've sworn there was a trope in which a character is fixated on a rather insignificant thing that recurs throughout the text. My example from the book is how the character Faizeh, having picked up pseudoscientific ideas, thinks her friend Munis would be smarter if she didn't have such a round head. The chapters from her POV repeatably mention "Munis' stupid round head" and variants thereof.

    While I'm using a literary example the same effect can be achieved in visual media (via close-ups, for instance). It's not a Single-Issue Wonk or Berserk Button — the effect and cause is more benign in these cases: it's not something the character can take action about. Nor does it seem overt or intense enough to be covered by related OCD tropes. Reply
  • 2 Apr 7th, 2018 at 1:01PM
    Lastest Reply: 7th Apr, 2018 07:49:31 PM
    What do you call it when an author likes to insert a particular philosophical question in many of his works? In many of Isaac Asimov's short-stories, as well as in his over-arching galazy history, there is the question of controlled comfort that stops risky space expansion vs. mankind's progress that includes rocky competition and war. Reply
  • 1 Mar 31st, 2018 at 9:09PM
    Lastest Reply: 6th Apr, 2018 01:03:00 PM
    The closest trope for what I'm looking for is a Greatest Hits Album, but the page is heavily slanted to one medium. It also occurs in Literature and television series (animated and live action), where a book (or DVD) is released as a "best of" compilation of short stories (or episodes).
    Examples: Reply
  • 2 Mar 25th, 2018 at 12:12AM
    Lastest Reply: 25th Mar, 2018 06:32:59 AM
    What trope do the "specials" fit into? Reply

      What do you mean by "specials"?

      "Specials", also called "chickenheads" would be people who suffered genetic damage from radiation and are of below average intelligence. Discussed in the book and kind of glossed over in the movie.

      I would say Childhood Brain Damage played for drama and possibly also Manchild when describing Isidore.
  • 1 Mar 17th, 2018 at 9:09AM
    Lastest Reply: 17th Mar, 2018 10:00:01 AM
    Tropes for urban fantasy Reply
  • 1 Feb 27th, 2018 at 12:12AM
    Lastest Reply: 28th Feb, 2018 02:30:21 AM
    Do we have a trope for a situation when main characters learn about the backstory, i.e. prehistory of an alien world or long lost civilisation by finding a conveniently placed wall with carvings or murals depicting it all in kind of a comic strip? This is basically what happens in Lovecraft's At the Mountains of Madness, but I haven't found this thing listed there. It's a particular way of presenting an Expose. I guess it would be a sub-trope of Infodump. Reply
  • 3 Jan 29th, 2018 at 6:06AM
    Lastest Reply: 30th Jan, 2018 03:10:12 AM
    I'm trying to think of the appropriate trope that describes a character or device that you have created that is, or becomes, such an impediment to the storytelling because their presence literally prevent the protagonists or fellow protagonists from getting into trouble in the first place, and so the author has to go to extreme lengths to keep them out of the way until the end when they inevitably appear and nullify the problem .The Luggage in the Rincewind Discworld books for example, Or indeed Miss Wetherwax herself in the later books.

    So does such a beast exist or do we have to name it? Reply
  • 1 Jan 9th, 2018 at 2:02PM
    Lastest Reply: 9th Jan, 2018 02:55:14 PM
    Is there a trope about an antagonist who convinces the weak he has power when in fact it's just an effective con? For example, he makes it seem like his "crew" is a lot bigger than it really is. In fact, he's desperate. Reply
  • 3 Jan 7th, 2018 at 3:03AM
    Lastest Reply: 9th Jan, 2018 01:43:44 PM
    A character thinks that another character hates her or dislike her at best. It can because the supposed hater never call their names, looks disapproved at everything they do, and some other things that could justify their thinking. It turns out that they didn't or it's being exaggerated that the supposed hater actually likes her. Reply

      Somebody Doesn't Love Raymond?

      Saw this one in a book called Amy and Laura by Marilyn Sachs. Amy has always been regarded as and believed herself to be a low-IQ The Ditz. Laura is "the smart one" who has always helped her with schoolwork or done it for her. A new teacher piles a huge amount of extra work on Amy, who automatically assumes it's because she's stupid and the teacher, who has very high standards, obviously hates her. Turns out the teacher thinks Amy is actually very intelligent and wasn't being challenged sufficiently. Amy credits Laura with everything the teacher says turned out well, but Laura has had other responsibilities and hasn't been able to help Amy much this term. She did most of the work herself.

      Stealth Mentor and Trickster Mentor, sometimes involves Wax On, Wax Off.
  • 2 Jan 8th, 2018 at 11:11PM
    Lastest Reply: 9th Jan, 2018 01:39:40 PM
    Seen this mostly in literature. Children who have pursued a certain goal all the way through the book end up inadvertently discovering criminals at work and become instrumental in capturing them/alerting police. Often they decide to become an Amateur Detective thinking police work is more exciting.
    • In E.W. Hildick's The Active-Enzyme, Lemon-Freshened, Junior High School Witch, Alison has been studying Ritual Magic, then thinks her neighbor is a sorceress; turns out she's one of a gang of art thieves. In the final chapter she abandons witchcraft to become The Top-Flight Fully-Automated Junior High School Girl Detective.
    • Bab: A Sub-Deb by Mary Roberts Rhinehart has Bab and her friends meeting for amateur military drills on the eve of WWI, including learning semaphore. Bab subsequently uncovers a German plot going on among some of the servants in her own home and uses signals to alert a neighbor.
    • The Witch's Daughter by Nina Bawden has three children ultimately foiling jewel thieves.
    • The Velvet Room by Zilpha Keatley Snyder has Robin trapped by burglars before they are caught, and '"The Egypt Game'' has April attacked by the real child molester/murderer so she can tell police it isn't the eccentric old guy everybody thinks it is.
  • 1 Jan 7th, 2018 at 8:08AM
    Lastest Reply: 8th Jan, 2018 12:52:56 PM
    Everybody plays a game Reply

      Despite it being fitting for your name could you perhaps be less ambiguous? Video games are a fairly common hobby and the fact that people play them in and of itself is chairs. Now if the story is trying to say something by having people play a game there may be a trope there.
  • 2 Jan 5th, 2018 at 3:03AM
    Lastest Reply: 5th Jan, 2018 03:06:37 PM
    It's the sort of thing that might happen at the start of a chapter when the perspective has suddenly shifted to someone who doesn't know the character but the reader certainly does. Reply
  • 2 Dec 25th, 2017 at 11:11AM
    Lastest Reply: 25th Dec, 2017 03:56:04 PM
    Alice is crazy in love with Bob, to the point where other characters believe they are in a relationship. Bob, however, has absolutely no feelings for her, and every time when asked he responds "she is not my girlfriend." People remark that Alice wants everyone to think she is Bob's girlfriend. Reply
  • 3 Oct 31st, 2017 at 8:08PM
    Lastest Reply: 1st Nov, 2017 01:47:03 AM
    What's the trope called when a character gets all isolated from others and stuck in the past when their loved one dies? Reply
  • 1 Oct 29th, 2017 at 2:02AM
    Lastest Reply: 30th Oct, 2017 12:06:10 PM
    character comparative life stories or lessons, creation, trick the trickster

  • 3 Oct 12th, 2017 at 1:01AM
    Lastest Reply: 13th Oct, 2017 09:37:58 PM
    Hi everyone, I'm working on the TV Tropes page of "Typhoon" by Joseph Conrad and I'm looking for the name of a trope which describes the kind of racism where Conrad didn't mind using offensive slurs during his lifetime (especially how he constantly uses the term "coolie" for talking about chinese slaves). Reply

      Values Dissonance or one of its related tropes, depending on how it's played in the work (is it acknowledged as racist, for example?) — that sort of casual racism was more or less accepted during his lifetime, but is frowned upon now.

      Fair for Its Day can come into play in some older works as well. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a good example: once you get past the culture shock, Jim is a radical-for-the-time portrayal of an intelligent man who happens to be a poorly educated black former slave, and much of the novel revolves around the importance of Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right! regarding the treatment of others.

      Possibly Have a Gay Old Time, if the slurs weren't considered particularly offensive during that time period.
  • 0 Oct 12th, 2017 at 5:05PM
    An man in his 30-40's is unhappy in his relationship with his wife, and is super depressed all the time, until he meets this younger, beautiful woman and his life is suddenly changed for the better. She is occasionally a mistress but not necessarily, and she also doesn't have to be super interested in him at all, just her presence and beauty are enough to rise the man out of his stupor. It's a lot like manic pixie dream girl, except the woman doesn't have the quirks or eccentricities related to that character. Some examples are Winston and Julia in 1984, and how the father in American Beauty changed his life completely after he realized Angela would have sex with him. Ring any bells? Reply
  • 1 Oct 2nd, 2017 at 2:02PM
    Lastest Reply: 2nd Oct, 2017 03:01:01 PM
    how about revenge where is it. Reply

      Uhhh...Revenge? I'm really not sure what you're looking for, but if that's not it, you can always check Revenge Tropes.
  • 2 Sep 21st, 2017 at 8:08AM
    Lastest Reply: 22nd Sep, 2017 02:53:10 AM
    An Ill Girl that likes to joke about her dying condition.


    Girl: I think God hates me so He broke my pancreas.
  • 1 Sep 20th, 2017 at 9:09AM
    Lastest Reply: 20th Sep, 2017 02:28:05 PM
    So a writer plans for a series (not just book series) to be of a certain number of installments. The first book is considered enjoyable enough to get the audience to read on. Then somewhere down the line, usually half way through the planned number of installments, the content of each new installment contains less and less plot, as if the writer had no idea what to do with the hundreds of available pages and opted to just stretch out the plot as much as possible to justify having that many books in the series.


    The Pendragon Adventure: The author planned for 10 books, one for each territory in the PA universe. The first seven books were written well enough, but then the last three began stretching out what little plot there was to tell, to the point where many fans thought they were boring.

    The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel: A six book series. Though every book was admittedly slow paced, there was a lot going on in the first three books. The last three books had very little to tell, with the fifth book being considered almost filler, giving the impression that the writer could have just combined them into two books and have enough room for properly developing the finale. Reply
  • 5 Sep 16th, 2017 at 4:04AM
    Lastest Reply: 18th Sep, 2017 03:00:24 PM
    A character implied her attraction to another character. I didn't find this in Love Confession.


    Girl: If I say that I want a boyfriend, what will you do?

    Girl: Nothing. Never mind.
  • 2 Sep 16th, 2017 at 7:07PM
    Lastest Reply: 18th Sep, 2017 07:28:53 AM
    A character (usually a guy) is pissed off with a girl's attitude. When he reached his boiling point, he forced the girl to the wall, floor, a bed, or anything sufficient. Then, when he sees the girl starts to cry, he lets her go and run away. Reply
  • 4 Aug 28th, 2017 at 2:02PM
    Lastest Reply: 7th Sep, 2017 11:41:10 AM
    There is a trope that has become about as ubiquitous in the Kinsey Millhone era as the Summation Gathering, aka "The Parlour Scene", was in the Hercule Poirot era. Namely, the investigator discovers who the murderer is when and only when she is attacked or threatened by him or her. (In every case of this I remember, the investigator is indeed female.)

    Is this Reveal Trope a subtrope of an established one that I'm missing? I don't think it's a Eureka Moment. It doesn't feel at ALL like Victory by Endurance, though it's the opposite of Wins by Doing Absolutely Nothing—it's instead Wins by Floundering Around Long Enough too close to the answer for the murderer's comfort.

    Or have we not documented it? It's regularly used in more than one style, including the Meg Langslow Mysteries as well as the above-mentioned Kinsey Millhone series, so I think it ought to be covered. Reply

      I don't think there's a trope for it specifically, though it would probably be a subtrope of Revealing Cover-Up.

      Meta Four: I don't think that matches at all!

      Alone with the Psycho seems to be what you're looking for.

      I know this comes up a lot in Ten Little Murder Victims, which is the classic "everybody's locked in an old mansion/abandoned building/submarine and the murderer kills them one by one". This is a common ending for a couple different variants of the scenario: When it gets down to the protagonist and the murderer it's pretty obvious whodunnit and that one of them is going to be next, or the detective has a Eureka Moment and explains why the the Red Herring can't be the killer...to the only other possible suspect left.

      Also check out Crime After Crime, which is a smaller-scale version of Revealing Cover Up. To paraphrase Girl Genius: "One of those plans where you start killing everybody that notices you're killing everybody..."

      The aforementioned Alone with the Psycho and its sister trope Exposition Victim are frequently involved, too.
  • 0 Aug 19th, 2017 at 3:03PM
    Working on examples for Way of Choices. Looking for two tropes.

    First, there's a stone that tests cultivation (enlightenment/chi) levels by glowing. Is there a trope for having some device or artifact that just reveals special powers/destiny? Like the triluminary-thingie in Babylon 5, or the Jedi-scanners in the old Star Wars EU (and Midi-chlorian tests in the prequels?)

    Two, the protag, Chen, is terminally, let's say ill. He is also engaged to marry one of the wealthiest and most important young women in the world, because his master saved her grandfather's life and he promised his granddaughter's hand. Chen goes to their house intending to break off the marriage contract, but her parents' snobbishness and various efforts to bribe or strong-arm him into breaking it convince him to keep it instead. What trope(s) would this fall under?

    EDIT: Do we really not have a trope for a straight-up test of physical strength? Reply