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Berate and Switch

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"Greasy walls. Rickety bed. Crazy neighbors. [beat] I love it!"
Judy, Zootopia

A comedic trope where a character assesses the current situation, listing typically unpleasant, unfavorable, or immoral actions or thoughts, and the conclusion drawn is the opposite of what you expect: they are very favorable and happy about it. The comedy can come from the fact that obsession and revulsion can result in a similar level of enthusiasm. Beauty, fashion sense, cuisine choice, etc. are all in the eye of the beholder.

Unlike Bad is Good and Good is Bad, this trope is used for comedy. Expect sitcoms to cue the Laugh Track. For example:

Bob: Look at this car! It's covered in rust, the stuffing's coming out of the seats, and you have to kick the trunk to get it to open...beautiful, isn't it?

An alternate version of this trope happens when a character gives advice to another, and what is seemingly a situation they want to deflect or have the receiver turn away from instead turns out to be encouragement. Depending on the situation, the more conservative outsider may look on such a conversation with shock or disgust.


Can be inverted by describing typically pleasant things, such as a beautiful sunny day, flowers, and puppies and it turns out the character is disgusted by them.

Not to be confused with Evil Virtues, which are about honest to goodness virtues applied to evil. Compare I Have Just One Thing to Say, Arson, Murder, and Admiration, I Like Those Odds. See also Too Kinky to Torture.


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  • One ad for UK betting agency Paddy Power has a hipster-looking man visit a burger van and ask whether they have any vegan options. The man replies, "Vegan?", in what sounds like an offended tone... then proceeds to rattle off a very impressive list of vegan options.

    Comic Books 
  • In The Killing Joke, the Joker assesses a run-down amusement park as a potential hideout:
    The Joker: Well, it's garish, ugly, and derelicts have used it for a toilet. The rides are dilapidated to the point of being lethal, and could easily maim or kill innocent little children.
    Estate Agent: Oh. So you don't like it?
    The Joker: Don't like it? I'm crazy for it.
  • Marvel Adventures: Super Heroes #5 has this conversation between Captain America and an anonymous caller who asked him to come to a Hydra base disguised as a normal town.
    Cap: The whole town? How many people?
    Caller: About... let's see...uhh... five thousand. Give or take.
    Cap: Five thousand Hydra personnel, and you want me to come in and steal a baby rhino?
    Caller: Yeah. That's about right.
    (Beat Panel. Cap grins.)
    Cap: I'm on my way.

  • In Avengers: Infinite Wars, when talking with Anakin Skywalker about Ahsoka Tano, Steve Rogers observes that the two Jedi are both “arrogant, cocky, self-centered [and] totally sure of themselves to an absurd degree”, but makes it clear that he admires both Anakin and Ahsoka for their strong will, compassion to their friends and concern for those under their command.

    Films — Animation 
  • In Beauty and the Beast, Gaston tells the asylum warden of his plan to force Belle to marry him by threatening to commit her father. He says "That's despicable... I love it!".
  • In Zootopia, Judy's assessment and conclusion of her situation when she moves into her rather small and tacky apartment at the titular city:
    Judy: Greasy walls. Rickety bed. Crazy neighbors. [beat] I love it!

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Sister Act:
    Reverend Mother: I hold you responsible for all of this. For introducing a lounge act into my convent, for utterly disrupting our lives, and exposing us all to mortal danger.
    ...thank you.
  • Star Trek: Generations. Data has recently had an emotion chip installed and is busy experiencing new things. When he tries one of Guinan's new drinks he hates it (as it tastes revolting) but eagerly asks for more.
  • The Addams Family:
    Morticia: Last night you were unhinged. You were like some desperate, howling demon. You frightened me. Do it again!
  • The Imitation Game:
    • Major Menzies when ask by Turing and Joan to help them keep the successful codebreaking a secret from the higher ups.
      Menzies: Maintain a conspiracy of lies... at the highest levels of government!?... [pause] ... Sounds right up my alley.
    • Turing also does this in one scene:
      Turing: "This distraction is completely unacceptable... [pause] ... Please take a seat so we can begin.
  • In Pacific Rim, Marshal Pentecost's scolding about Becket's reckless yet successful fighting maneuvers ends up being a compliment.
    Pentecost: [frowning] In all of my years fighting I've never... [smile appears on his face] ... seen anything like that. Well done.
  • Inversion in Addams Family Values: the family is shocked when the baby turns out to enjoy hearing pleasant stories read to him and that he has curly blonde hair.
  • Dumb and Dumber: After Lloyd traded in the van for a moped to get he and Harry to Aspen:
    Harry: Just when I think you couldn't possibly be any dumber, you do something like this...and totally redeem yourself!


    Live-Action TV 
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: In the episode "Intervention," Spike, after being captured and brutally tortured by Glory for information on the Key, is rescued by the Scoobies and dumped back at his crypt. Buffy, posing as Spike's Buffybot, comes back to the crypt to discover whether or not he sold them out, and discovers that Spike chose to endure Glory's torture to protect Dawn, to the extent that he was perfectly willing to let Glory kill him. Buffy kisses him as a thank you, and Spike immediately realizes that it's the real Buffy:
    Spike: And my robot?
    Buffy: The robot was gone. The robot was gross and obscene.
    Spike: It wasn't supposed to—
    Buffy: Don't. That thing, it... it wasn't even real.
    [she turns to go, then turns back to Spike for a minute]
    Buffy: What you did for me and Dawn... that was real. I won't forget it.
  • From The Monkees episode "Monkees in the Ring":
    Mike: You're gonna be going through a lot strange cities, and there's always this one hotel: one with a lot of heavy drinking, a lot of fast women, and a lot of loose talk. You know what to do when you get to town?
    Davy: Find that hotel!
    Mike: And you'll do fine.
  • The Good Life: Tom and Barbara usually eat healthy food they've grown in their own garden. In "The Pagan Rite" when they are out to dinner, they say that their food is full of artificial additives, cholesterol, etc., and Tom ends up saying, "Great, isn't it?"
  • A typical Get Smart quote:
    Chief: You understand your current assignment means you will be in constant danger, unable to trust anyone, and face torture or even death.
    Max: And...loving it.
  • The various versions of The Addams Family are full of this trope, a rainy day will be described as something beautiful, flowers with only stems are more attractive, and dolls should be headless.
  • The Aquabats! Super Show! combined this trope with Strange Minds Think Alike. First the MC Bat Commander describes being on tour involving truck stop food, public restrooms and a complete lack of showers as the best thing ever. After their Battle Tram is stolen by an unscrupulous carnival worker named Carl, he describes going out on the open road the exact same way; truck stop food, public restrooms, and complete lack of showers is like heaven on wheels.
  • In the Seinfeld episode "The Letter," a haughty older couple, the Armstrongs, examine, and analyze, a painting of Kramer. The woman reads admirable qualities into his character while the man describes him as a "parasite," a "sexually depraved miscreant," and a "loathsome, offensive brute," cumulating in a mutual decision to buy the painting:
    "He bends time and space!"
    "He sickens me!"
    "I love it."
    "...Me too."

    Tabletop Games 
  • The Warhammer 40,000 sourcebook Codex: Catachans has some flavor text in which a member of the Catachan Jungle Fighters Imperial Guard Regiment describes the Death World of Varestus Prime:
    We've run into scorpions the size of battle tanks, three men died from Eyerot last week. I've sweat enough to fill a lake, my boots got sucked into a sink-swamp and the trees are so thick in places, you can't squeeze between them. Emperor help me, I love this place! It's just like home!

    Video Games 
  • One of the Shadowknight's quotes from Champions of Norrath hints at this:
    Shadowknight: Whoever designed this dungeon was sick, twisted and half-mad... my compliments!
  • The Curse of Monkey Island: In order to beat Edward van Helgen at the banjo duel, you have to shoot his instrument while he's in the middle of a wild solo. He sputters about what a low-down dirty trick that was... then says "I completely misjudged you. You are a pirate, after all!"

    Web Comics 
  • From Vexxarr:
    Vexxarr: If you think the Emperor was enraged before, he'll boil away entire star systems to get me now! Once word of this gets back to Bleen, I'll be the most hated, despised and feared cnidarian in the galaxy!...YESSS!
  • At one point in Freefall Sam says of Florence "She's out all night, doesn't check in to tell us where she's been, and now we find out she's been incarcerated. Helix, my hard work as a role model is finally starting to pay off."
  • In The Whiteboard, Anthony the construction foreman drops by the shop and Doc offers him coffee.
    Anthony: I dunno. Is it the same nasty, toxic, spoon-meltingly awful stuff you usually make?
    Doc: Of course.
    Anthony: Great! I'll have mine black, with pretty much all the sugar you got.
  • In Sluggy Freelance, Mr. Middleman tells Riff that he's noticed that after Riff was babysitting his goddaughter, she only seems better behaved afterwards because she's now scared of everything. But hey, he believes that fear is the basis of good parenting.

    Web Animation 
  • In RWBY, during the mission to Mountain Glenn, Professor Dr. Oobleck finds out that Ruby had brought along Zwei, who she was pet-sitting when the mission came up.
    Oobleck: We're here to investigate an abandoned urban jungle teeming with death and hostility, and you brought... a dog?
    Ruby: I... uhh...
    Oobleck: Genius! Canines are historically known for their perceptive nose and heightened sense of sound, making them excellent companions for hunts such as ours!

    Western Animation 
  • In My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, Rarity spends time hanging out with posh ponies instead of designing her friend Twilight Sparkle's birthday dress. When Twilight shows up out of the blue, she seems to hate the plain dress, until she says she loves its simplicity and practicality.
  • Futurama:
    • In the first episode, after Fry is unfrozen in the future, he reflects on how his girlfriend, parents, and everyone he's ever known is dead, pauses and says "Woo-hoo!"
    • In "The Route Of All Evil", after Dwight and Cubert's Awesome Express venture finally falls apart and they run crying to their parents (whose own business they had earlier destroyed):
      Hubert: Why did you boys do all this?
      Hermes: Proud of you?! You ruined us with sleazy business practices and a complete disregard for human decency! [Beat] Of course we're proud of you.
      Hubert: Damn right we are!
  • The Joker on The Batman has a pretty low opinion on Harleen Quinzell's talkshow:
    Joker: "Pop Psychology at its worst! That girl's theories are unfounded, her professional manner's a joke, and her training, if ANY, is shoddy at best! (Beat) I LOVE THIS SHOW!"
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender: Azula expresses her jealousy at how Ty Lee manages to catch the attention of so many guys while none will look at her. Ty Lee gives her advice for picking up guys.
    Ty-Lee: If you want a boy to like you, just look at him and smile a lot, and laugh everything he says, even if it's not funny!
    Azula: That sounds shallow and stupid. Let's try it!
  • The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius: In "Normal Boy", when Jimmy gets dumbed down thanks to a malfunctioning invention:
    Carl: Uh, normal Jimmy seems kind of stupid.
    Sheen: Yeah, he's pretty messed up.
    Sheen: I like him!
    Carl: Me too!
  • Magical Girl Friendship Squad: When Nut watches reality TV:
    Nut: Oh, this is horrible! ...I love it!


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