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Abnormal Allergy

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Gerald: What if pigs make me sneeze?
Piggie: ?
Gerald: aaa-CHOO!

Allergies. A lot of people have them. Most people have standard allergies, such as pollen, grass, dogs, cats, nuts, and so on.

And then there's this character.

Their allergies are completely strange. Apparently, they're allergic to aliens, rocks, and desk fans. They sneeze and break out whenever they get near any of them. Nobody understands why.


This trope is about that person. Someone who has out-of-place allergies. This trope is almost always Played for Laughs, though dramatic versions do exist.

Sub-trope of Plot Allergy and Fictional Disability. Compare Absurd Phobia and Ironic Allergy.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Sailor Moon, Ami/Sailor Mercury is allergic to love letters, but only in one side-story ("Ami's First Love").
  • In Snow White with the Red Hair the queen is said to have a castle allergy after she becomes ill whenever she spends long periods in the castle at the capitol after her husband's death. She is evidently not "allergic" to all castles since she spends her time in a castle in the north ruling from there.
  • Amelia from Trigun: Badlands Rumble claims that she's allergic to idiots. Sure enough, when Vash touches her hand, her arm breaks out in hives and she needs to treat it with medication right away.
  • Lily in Wasteful Days of High School Girls is allergic to any male (and Tanaka, for some reason), manifested as hives (in the manga and the anime) or a sneeze (in the live-action adaptation) whenever she touches them. A blind test arranged by Robo shows this is an actual allergy rather than some kind of psychosomatic problem.

    Comic Books 

    Fan Works 
  • In Dragon Ball Z Abridged, Goku is allergic to the taste of grapes. In addition to grapes themselves, anything which happens to be grape-flavored will make him turn purple.

    Films — Animation 
  • In Arthur Christmas, Arthur has a habit of claiming crazy things like he's scared of buttons. One of his outlandish claims is that he's allergic to snow.
  • In Cool World, Niles the Spider is allergic to clouds. His partner Frank really wishes he had told this before they started climbing the outside of Holli's skyscraper.
  • Finding Nemo: Sheldon the seahorse is allergic to water. Given that he lives underwater, he's quite the sneezer.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In the Blade Trilogy, Whistler specifically says, "Vampires are severely allergic to silver." Severely is a major understatement; if a vamp is stabbed or shot with silver, their body bursts into intense flame, leaving a charred skeleton that crumbles to ash. In the first film a vampire is sprayed in the mouth with silver mace and her head explodes.
  • In Cool World, Nails is allergic to clouds. Justified as Nails is a 'doodle' and therefore subject to the Toon Physics under which the Cool World operates.
  • The Nanny Diaries mentions a child who's allergic to air, though in the context of overly-worried mothers.
  • In The Neverending Story movie, Morla, the Ancient One is allergic to youth.
  • In Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Kirk has to wear antique reading glasses, because he's allergic to the drug that most people take to correct their vision.
  • In French movie La Vengeance du serpent à plumes, a crook happens to be allergic to cops (whatever the nationality). Meaning he'll sneeze violently when there are cops nearby, even if he can't see them or they are in civilian clothes. He can even counts them rather reliably (unless there are too many). This comes quite handy as an early warning system for his gang.

  • Alice, Girl from the Future: Discussed in The War With Lilliputians. Alice's parents plan to send her to her aunt who grows prize-winning artichokes. Alice immediately claims she has had an incurable allergy to artichokes since birth.
  • Animorphs: Rachel turns out to be allergic to crocodiles when she absorbs the DNA of one for morphing. The result is that she starts unexpectedly morphing whenever she has a strong emotion, whether angry, afraid, or even lovestruck. Her body curing her condition turns out to be even worse, as first she starts behaving like a crocodile while still in a human form, then the DNA is expelled from her in the form of a crocodile growing out of her body.
  • In the Elephant & Piggie book "Pigs Make Me Sneeze", Gerald thinks he's allergic to pigs.
  • Making Money: Aimsbury the chef is allergic to garlic — not the aromatic root vegetable, the word. Whenever anyone mentions it in his presence, it causes him to freeze for fifteen seconds, throw the knife he's typically holding straight ahead of himself, then speak in Quirmian (i.e. French) for four seconds. Due to this, he's employed to cook for a dog, whose meals seldom include any mention of ga— er, that stuff.
  • Robert A. Heinlein's Glory Road. When Oscar Gordon enters the Forest of Dragons he discovers that he is allergic to dragons. His eyes start watering, his sinuses clog up and he has to hold back a sneeze. Luckily his friend Star has an ointment that neutralizes his allergy.
  • Maniac Magee is allergic to pizza. Ironically, he wins a certificate giving him one free pizza a week for a year.
  • In the book Pants on Fire, the protagonist is a liar and one of his lies is that he's allergic to paper.
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Baudelaire siblings are allergic to peppermints, a fact often forgotten by their escort Mr. Poe, who keeps absentmindedly giving them some. In the third book, they deliberately eat them to give themselves an excuse to stay home, and their symptoms are quite ridiculous, with Violet breaking out in spots, Klaus's tongue swelling up too much to speak, and Sunny getting both.
  • The Chronicles of Narnia: In The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, the magician Coriakin mentions that whenever he is under the invisibility spell, it always makes him feel sleepy.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In one episode of Beauty and the Geek, the geeks have to perform at a stand up comedy club. One of the geeks comes up with a skit involving a man allergic to tigers (specifically, the gag is about being allergic to large things instead of small things). Apparently Exact Words is in effect too, as the man breaks out in hives while scuba diving, because there are tiger sharks in the water.
  • The Dick Van Dyke Show: Rob and Laura are conned into buying some "genuine eiderdown" pillows that are actually filled with cheap chopped chicken feathers, They take the seller to court. The ultimate proof of their statement that the pillows are full of chicken feathers is that the judge is allergic to chicken feathers and when Rob accidentally busts one of the pillows sending feathers flying everywhere, the judge starts sneezing.
  • One episode of Gilligan's Island has The Professor discover that The Skipper is allergic to Gilligan. Soon, this allergy spreads to the other castaways as well. Subverted at the end when it's discovered that what's making them sneeze is actually Gilligan's shampoo, made from materials on the island.
  • In the Star Trek: Voyager episode "Threshold", Tom Paris's first symptom that he's changing into a lizard thing is that he's now allergic to water.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons 1st and 2nd Edition has Allergy Dust, which is made from the powdered bone of a particular creature. Anyone exposed to the dust becomes allergic to that creature, including watery eyes, a clogged nose and sneezing. Dusts could give allergies to such fantasy creatures as dragons, goblins, giants and basilisks. Having such an allergy could be annoying or even lethal to an adventurer.
  • In Craig Shaw Gardner's Ebeneezum Trilogy, the title character is under a curse which makes him allergic to magic; he begins sneezing uncontrollably in its presence. Considering that he's a wizard, and that one of his traveling companions is a warrior who has an enchanted club (he normally carries it in a sack to minimize the effect on Ebeneezum) , it causes all sorts of problems.
  • In Leather Goddesses of Phobos, the mad scientist who switches the mind of the player character with the mind of a gorilla won't let the player character take a portable wormhole into his laboratory because he's allergic to portable wormholes.
  • In Shadowrun Awakened (magical) creatures have a variety of allergies appropriate to their monster type, including sunlight (banshee, barghest, ghoul, vampire, wendigo), silver (shapeshifter e.g. werewolves) and pollutants (unicorn).

    Video Games 
  • Adventure: The Inside Job is an Adventure Game set in the world of adventure games, and one of the characters, Sidonius, is allergic to low-res EGA graphics.
  • The player character in Bugsnax, the Journalist, is allergic to the titular Bugsnax, as eating one causes them to become violently ill. It explains why the player cannot customize themselves as they can the other residents of Snaxburg. It turns out to be quite fortunate once the true nature of the Bugsnax is revealed.
  • Toko Fukawa in Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls claims to be allergic to machines, preventing her from using the Megaphone Hacking Gun which the gameplay is based around.
  • Undertale has the Temmies, enemies whose only "attack" is that they trigger the player character's allergies when they try to cuddle. That's reasonable. Where it gets ridiculous is when you speak to one of them in the Temmie village, and she admits that she's also allergic to Temmies... including herself. She breaks out in hives immediately after saying that.

    Web Animation 
  • Eddsworld: In the episode "Space Face (Part 2)", Matt claims to be allergic to explosions.
  • In ASDF Movie, there's a character who's allergic to adorableness. Someone gives him a cat, in which he says "aaaaw..." right afterwards, a tombstone is shown.
  • Half-Life VR but the AI is Self-Aware: Whenever Science Team encounters toxic leaks, Dr. Coomer complains that he's allergic to radioactive waste, which he calls "green goop". He never displays any symptoms, though.
  • In GonzoSSM's first Fan Animation for Tobuscus, Toby declares bullets are his only weakness, because he's allergic to them.

    Web Comics 
  • In I Dream of a Jeanie Bottle Jean turns out to have acquired an allergy to moonshine whiskey. She starts sneezing random magical effects all over the place unless she is confined to her bottle.
  • In Rooster Teeth Comics, one strip features Gus taking an allergy skin test at his doctor's office. When he reacts to every single allergen, his doctor concludes that he is "allergic to life".

    Web Original 
  • According to one Neopets editorial, Hanso is allergic to being stabbed.

    Web Videos 

    Western Animation 
  • The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius: Carl has a ridiculous number of allergies, as do his parents. His father is once shown to have an allergy to ice of all things.
  • The Amazing World of Gumball: In "The Sneeze", Darwin can't stop sneezing. Since he happens to sneeze every time Gumball tells something absurd, Anais concludes that he might be allergic to stupidity. In the end, the reason behind Darwin's sneezes turns out to be a feather that was stuck in his gills.
  • Angelo Rules: One episode reveals that Sherwood only eats muffins that don't contain flour because he's allergic to... carbohydrates (rather than gluten). This is not referenced in other episodes, where he's seen eating normal cakes.
  • Arthur: In "Binky Goes Nuts", Binky dreams about a boy who's allergic to formica, two other boys who are allergic to utensils and their own hands, and a superhero who's allergic to salt.
  • Chowder: In one episode, a pig named Reuben eats a sandwich with mayo in it. He then mentions he is allergic to mayo, and starts breaking out.
  • Dave the Barbarian: A Running Gag has Dave puffing up at various things, including cheese and pudding.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy: Ed has three known, sometimes bizarre allergies; rabbits (which make his body swell up like a balloon), eels (which turns him into a fish) and butterscotch pudding (which causes his face to swell up).
  • The Fairly Oddparents: Principal Waxleplax is frosting-intolerant.
  • My Little Pony:
  • Peg + Cat: Peg has an allergy to four-leaf clovers, which make her sneeze. This isn't biologically possible — four-leaf clovers aren't really chemically different from regular clovers other than possibly having a different gene that causes the extra leaf to grow, but whatever allergen would still be present.
  • Phineas and Ferb: Candace is allergic to wild parsnips. Allergies to this plant are rare in reality but they are still dangerous for another reasonnote .
  • Rugrats: In "The Big Sneeze", Chuckie thinks he's allergic to Kimi but he's really allergic to the dandelion she's carrying.
  • Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated
    • In one episode, Daphne gets a rash from touching an item made of fake alligator skin. According to her she's allergic to all cheap knock off and imitation materials. Fortunately, no pun intended, she's very rich.
    • In another episode, A TV host named Francilee Jackson/Agatha Juniper Sholenheimer has an unusual allergic reaction to healthy foods, given that her cornbread stuffing doesn't, ironically, contain corn at all.
  • The Simpsons
    • In one episode it's mentioned in passing that Bart has allergies to butterscotch, imitation butterscotch, and glow-in-the-dark monster makeup.
    • Milhouse is allergic to many things including dairy, non-dairy, the red part of candy canes, and his own tears.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: In "Can You Spare a Dime?", Squidward lies about being allergic to newspaper print in order to not look for a new job.
  • Storm Hawks: Junko has a few of these. One of them is an allergy to Murk Raiders (basically a gang of sky pirates), which doubles as a Plot Allergy that makes him break out in a sneezing fit.
  • Teen Titans (2003): In "Apprentice (Part 1)", Starfire displays an allergy to "metallic chromium", which causes her to sneeze energy blasts.
  • Tiny Toon Adventures: The recurring character Li'l Sneezer is known for his powerful sneezes, usually triggered by his allergies. Besides cats (which is a common allergy), some of the other things Sneezer is allergic to include anchovies, olives, rubber, nightmares, smoke, rap music, and heights.
  • Winnie-the-Pooh: Papa Heffalump from The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh is revealed to be allergic to such things as ditches, heights, marshmallows, furry woodland creatures, and his son messing up. Being a heffalump, he of course, has powerful sneezes.

    Real Life 
  • Autoimmune disorders are, roughly speaking, where you are allergic to yourself, and they're definitely not fun.
  • There is also a rare allergy to the sun.
  • A small minority of the population have a rare allergy to their own tears.
  • There is a rare allergy to water, which will cause someone's skin to break out in hives, and typically occurs regardless of the type of water or its temperature.


Video Example(s):


Four-Leaf Clovers

In "The Allergy Problem" from "Peg + Cat," Peg discovers that she is allergic to four-leaf clovers and not Cat, as she thought at first. However, this shouldn't be biologically possible, as a regular clover would still have whatever allergen is present in the four-leaf clover that is triggering her sneezes.

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