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Betty and Veronica Switch

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In a Betty and Veronica love triangle, the Betty somehow becomes the Veronica, and vice versa. This can happen in three different ways:

This trope is often used to subvert and criticize gender stereotypes such as the Madonna-Whore Complex by introducing a Good Bad Girl and a Hypocrite as potential Love Interests for a gullible hero, teaching him that just because the Betty is the "wholesome" choice doesn't mean she's exempt from the time-tested Aesop that you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, something which is normally applied to the Veronica. Other examples for the mere sake of suspense also exist.

Most examples are The Un-Twist, but not in a bad way, and it is always a pleasure for the audience to see the heroine/hero fall in love with the person they wanted to win. However, if done well, it can create astonishment and character development, and a sense of shared guilt with the center of the Triangle for misjudging the Love Interest.

Often a Subtrope of the trope Unrequited Love Switcheroo.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • In Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day, Meiko/Menma and Naruko/Anaru seem to play the trope straight for Jintan — Menma is dressed in white and looks like a very sweet and cute kid, while Anaru's looks are heavily based on the gyaru subculture (painted nails, miniskirts, bleached hair). Personality-wise, though, they're the opposite: Menma is free-spirited and kind of thoughtless, while Anaru is very adorkable.
  • The Okumura twins play this to their mutual crush Shiemi in Blue Exorcist with Rin initially being the rough and lively Veronica while Yukio is the calm and polite Betty. However, as the story goes on, Rin becomes more mature and the nice guy that he always was underneath it all comes into relief and Yukio's darker less stable nature begins to rise to the surface.
  • The anime adaptation of The Familiar of Zero has Louise and Siesta switch roles for the third season. As Saito grows more used to Louise's habits, his relationship with her normalizes somewhat culminating with their marriage at the end of the second season. Shortly thereafter the writers force Siesta to crank up the sex appeal to compensate because Status Quo Is God.
  • In Neon Genesis Evangelion, there's a huge debate about who's Betty and who's Veronica since Rei and Asuka present traits of both sides. Rei has a gentle disposition and reserved nature, but she's also bizarre, cold, and strangely unsettling. Fiery Redheaded foreigner Asuka has a forceful and aggressive personality, but is also seen as the more outgoing and human one.
  • In the Princess Tutu anime, Fakir appears at first as a male Tsundere, and Mytho the Prince has a case of Chronic Hero Syndrome. They were respectively the Veronica and Betty to Ahiru's Archie, then Mytho's heart shard is tainted with the Crow's blood and he becomes evil and potentially violent, and Fakir is seen as the friend and confidant who does everything he can to protect Ahiru. And this is settled when Rue performs an Heroic Sacrifice to bring Mytho back to the side of good... and then Mytho stays with her instead.
  • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica, this happens with the Sayaka - Kyousuke - Hitomi love triangle. Though Kyousuke is Oblivious to Love, Sayaka starts out as the nice girl who spends a lot of time keeping him company in the hospital, and Hitomi is the elite rich kid who's theoretically nice but doesn't really do anything for him. The stress of Magical Girl-ing makes Sayaka increasingly Cute and Psycho (and later monstrous and psycho), while Hitomi becomes Kyousuke's pure-hearted partner (which only contributes to Sayaka's downward spiral). As a twist on the trope, there's also Kyouko, who's way past the standard level of Veronicaness. She has no interest in Kyousuke, but gets caught up in the whole mess due to her magical-girl rivalry with Sayaka; as Sayaka plummets off the deep end, Kyouko's Jerk with a Heart of Gold side comes out, and there's a considerable amount of Ambiguously Gay subtext between the two of them.
  • Ranma ½: Akane and Shampoo have traits of both sides. Akane is an extremely violent Tsundere, rather popular at school and despite her efforts has very few traditionally feminine traits; Shampoo is a Supreme Chef, works full-time in her grandma's restaurant, can be almost kittenish when she's happy (pun intended), she comes from a lower-class setting than Akane, is a lot smarter than she looks, and is also multi-talented. However, Akane is very kind-hearted and nice when she's not being upset, and often stands up for others and even for Ranma despite the risks, and while Shampoo can cook and can be very demure around Ranma, most of the time she's Tsundere bordering on Yandere and can be very manipulative and cruel either to Mousse or to Ranma himself. Shampoo also has an exotic quality, and her sexiness is sometimes played up too, especially compared to Akane who is a tomboy who desperately attempts to be more feminine.
  • Yona of the Dawn has a genderswapped version of this, following the trope down to the Blonde, Brunette, Redhead colour-scheme. With Princess Yona in the position of Archie, the manga introduces two childhood friend love-interests early on, though it's the Betty who originally attracts her affection. The designated Betty, Suwon—a fair-haired Bishōnen, complete with a near-constant stare—is originally presented as sweet, kind and gentle. The designated Veronica, Hak—a dark-haired Hunk and chronic Smug Smiler—is originally presented as snarky, roguish, and Tsundere. This seemingly vanilla Betty and Veronica dynamic comes to a screeching halt by the end of the first chapter when Suwon murders Yona's father, chases her and Hak out of the palace, and proceeds to take the throne. In comparison to Hak, who discards his home, his name, and his position as a General in order to travel with Yona, while frequently laying his life on the line and becoming a Living Emotional Crutch for her. Later, it is Hak who earns himself a place as Yona's Second Love.

    Comic Books 
  • In the Archie Comics, the Betty becomes a Veronica when she tries to murder Archie out of spite. For Veronica, despite having mistaken herself for a romantic novel heroine after a knock on the head, she never did such a thing, and thus gets the title of Betty in the trope namer for this kind of triangles.
  • In Spider-Man, fans generally recall Peter being stuck between (seemingly) carefree party girl and Fiery Red Head Mary Jane was the Veronica to sweet, Girl Next Door Gwen Stacy. Except while later adaptations would run with this characterization, Gwen was decided not like that, being more of a stuck-up, headstrong, popular girl type. Mary Jane, despite her more flighty nature at the time, was more akin to the Betty; a role she would fulfill in earnest as her and Peter's relationship improves and he found himself with a few other love interests, most notably the sultry cat burglar Black Cat. It's also possible that Steve Ditko intended for Mary Jane to be a straight example from the start. Though the character was pretty much The Ghost during his run on the series — outside regular mention from Aunt May, she only appears twice during his run and both times her face is obscured — she's dressed very formally and Aunt May thought she was housewife material.

    Comic Strips 

    Fan Works 
  • Arrow: Rebirth:
    • For Laurel, Tommy, the Dogged Nice Guy best friend who stood by her and comforted her for the last five years, is the initial Betty, while Oliver, the vigilante ex-boyfriend who cheated on her with her sister, is the initial Veronica. Then it turns out Tommy is an Obliviously Evil and naive elitist who only cares about helping out his loved ones, while Oliver is a genuinely heroic and selfless individual who willingly risks his life everyday to better the lives of strangers. Laurel chooses Oliver, and her decision is only cemented after Tommy outs Oliver as the Green Arrow, putting everyone they care about in danger.
    • For Oliver, Felicity, his wife from the previous timeline who traveled back in time like he did, is the initial Betty, while Laurel, the Lost Lenore First Love who is still angry at him for what happened with Sara, is the initial Veronica. However, Laurel ends up forgiving Oliver and begins supporting him wholeheartedly due to sharing his vision for Starling City, while Felicity turns out to be an obsessive Yandere who is willing to Murder the Hypotenuse if it means keeping Oliver with her. Note that Oliver chose Laurel before he found out about Felicity's true nature, which he didn't learn of until after Felicity was murdered by the Huntsman. Once he did, however, he fully admitted marrying Felicity was a mistake.
  • Jerk in Sheep's Clothing: Marinette is the Archie in a new love triangle between Adrien and new character Henri LeRoi. Adrien is the Betty, her First Love, the boy-next-door type, and a true friend who truly cares for her, even if his actions are a little misguided. Henri, on the other hand, is the titular "jerk in sheep's clothing", as he is teaming up with Marinette's worst enemy in secret, bullying all her friends behind her back, and only wants her as a trophy girlfriend, making him the Veronica. However, part of his manipulations is warping Marinette's point of view so that she believes that Adrien is the real jerk in sheep's clothing AKA her real Veronica and that Henri himself is her kind-hearted, loyal boy-next-door Betty.
  • Keep Your Hands Off My Mate initially sets up an Exaggeration of the Betty-Veronica dichotomy, with Alexa Woods being presented with a choice between Brian, her kind and seemingly-ordinary new boyfriend, and Scar, a Predator who wants her to leave Earth behind and doesn't know how to relate to her. However, Brian turns out to be a government agent with shades of Entitled to Have You, whilst Scar is honest and genuinely trying to make her happy. Brian's Heel–Face Turn isn't enough to repair her lost faith in humanity or restore her interest in him, and she gives into her feelings for Scar.
  • In Less Than Zero (Kenchi618), Wonder Girl is rather unhappy to see her friend Supergirl growing closer with the blatantly selfish and villainous aspiring thief Null, trying to push her toward their teammate Power Boy instead. Then Power Boy revealed his true colours as a Yandere who would try and kill his much weaker love rival, while Null is nothing but nice and supportive for a depressed Kara.
  • In Shatterheart: Syaoran, the sweet but timid Hikikomori is the Betty, and Fai, the Ice Queen Broken Bird is the Veronica. But Syaoran is just as bitter as Fai and far more sexually forward as he seduces Kurogane early in their relationship as Friends with Benefits while Fai has known Kurogane from the beginning of their journey but never let Kurogane know about his feels. Ultimately its Syaoran's good heart and emotional honesty that wins Kurogane over.
  • Mai is the Betty and Katara is the Veronica with their traits switched around in The Stalking Zuko Series. Mai is Zuko's childhood friend, the "safe" choice, and a lady of the court, but with Veronica traits like being different from what he's used to (after his banishment and traveling), is very wealthy, used to commanding servants, and is an Ice Queen. Katara is the Veronica in that she's exotic, seemingly unattainable due to their past history and possible futures, is outside of his world (the Fire Nation), and seemingly unaware of Zuko's affections. However, Katara has Betty traits such as being emotionally reliable, Zuko's best friend, and part of Zuko's past lifestyle of banishment, chasing the Avatar, traveling, and re-banishment.
  • These Foolish Things sets this up with Oliver Queen, between Felicity Smoak (the Betty), his current girlfriend and quirky Girl Friday, who seemingly loves him as he is, and Laurel Lance (the Veronica), his on-and-off ex-girlfriend who he's had belligerent relations with in the past due to his bad treatment of her and her family. Oliver and Laurel are trying to be better friends to each other at the start of the story, but Oliver's campaign manager Alex is advising him to stay away from Laurel due to the optics of him still being so closely related to his ex. All of this changes when Felicity, insecure about her relationship with Oliver after learning Laurel still has some of the things he gave her while they were dating, hacks Oliver's personal banking account and tracks down all the potential gifts he gave Laurel during their relationship and demands them back from Laurel. When everyone finds this out, they're openly appalled since it's a massive invasion of privacy on her end that proves how much of a massive Control Freak she is, something that is compounded by her trying to force Oliver to cut both Laurel and Thea, his sister, out of his life in favor of her. Oliver naturally decides to break up with Felicity instead, and in the aftermath both Alex and John Diggle (the biggest supporter of Oliver and Felicity's relationship) openly acknowledge they told Oliver to "stay away from the wrong woman". Unsurprisingly, Oliver and Laurel get back together not long after.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Basic Instinct: Good girl Dr. Beth Garner (whose name is eerily similar to Betty, probably because they're both derivatives of Elizabeth) is strongly implied to be just as murderous as the evil Catherine (Veronica).
  • The Brothers Karamazov: Katerina seems to genuinely love Dmitri and want him back, while Grushenka is toying with his emotions. But by the end of the novel Grushenka is proclaiming her love for Dmitri and following him into Siberian exile, while a bitter Katerina produces the incriminating letter that dooms Dmitri to a long prison sentence.
  • Closer. Flirtatious, vivacious, carefree Alice is supposedly the Veronica while wise, mature Anna is supposedly the Betty, but Alice is committed to her lover Dan throughout the film, while Anna changes her mind about whether she wants to be with Dan or Larry literally from one scene to the next.
  • In The Dark Knight Rises, it happens between Selina Kyle and Miranda Tate, Bruce Wayne's other Love Interest. Miranda is a sweet clean energy champion, Selina is a burglar. The latter saves him despite having been The Mole, the other is The Man Behind the Man.
  • Freaks of Nature: The shy and withdrawn Petra is the Betty while the sexually-active Lorelei is the Veronica for the hero Dag. However, Petra is actually a vampire while Lorelei is just a normal human, who ends up getting killed by her rival in a fit of jealousy.
  • Lieberman in Love: Shaleen is the cynical High-Class Call Girl that Joe has been patronizing. Karen is the sweet, pretty real estate agent that Joe has fallen in love with. It seemed like Karen is the Betty and Shaleen wis the Veronica—they're even color-coded that way, with Karen's blonde hair and Shaleen's dark reddish-brown. But it turns out that Karen is a money-grubbing schemer. Shaleen picks up on this and gives Karen $50,000 of her own money so that Karen will get out of Joe's life. (Karen soon scams $50K more out of Joe.). Why did Shaleen pay Karen to go away? Because Shaleen is the real Betty and has fallen in love with Joe.
  • The twist in Jim Carrey's The Mask. The approachable awkward reporter actually sells him out to the villain while the seemingly unattainable bombshell is actually much more centered than she first appeared.
  • In Total Recall (1990), it sort of is the case with Lori Quaid, the main character's wife, and Melina, the woman from his dreams. Less so in the remake.
  • Uncut Gems: Howard's wife Dinah - as she has his kids and appears to be family-orientated and want him to give up his gambling - appears to be the Betty to Julia's shallow, sexy, materialistic Veronica. However, Julia shows that she will really stick by him and borders on being a Love Martyr for him while Dinah gives him a brutal "Reason You Suck" Speech and ditches him.

  • In The Age of Innocence, May is Newland's conventional blonde "good girl" fiancee, while Ellen is the exotic and individualistic dark-haired family reprobate. May, however, is revealed to have a highly manipulative side, while Ellen honestly loves him, and is more suited to him in terms of tastes and personality. Possibly a deconstruction of the Betty and Veronica trope.
  • The versions of the legend of the knight Pelleas (from the Arthurian Legend) sometimes feature this. Pelleas falls in love with the lady Ettarde. She then pretends to reciprocate in order to have him win something for her in a tournament. She pushes him away when she has it, but he thinks it is all a test and comes to visit her every day. Growing annoyed, she puts him in her gaol and frees him every day. Pelleas then meets Gawain, who decides to help him by visiting Ettarde and later opening the gates, but Gawain falls in love with her, she reciprocates, and he does not follow his vow and Pelleas discovers it. Then, the different versions of the myth diverge:
    1. Either Pelleas goes in his tent, becomes depressed, and is saved by a sweet, ethereal-looking Lady of the Lake, Elaine, who reveals that she has very powerful magical powers (and a lot of Hidden Depths when she curses who she believes to be her rival, while Pelleas has fallen in love with her himself and forgotten Ettarde), Ettarde finds out Gawain's original plan and, furious with him, regrets Pelleas.
    2. ... or Pelleas grows mad with rage, and becomes the Red Knight, devoted to proving the hypocrisy of Arthur's court.
  • In Blood & Chocolate, the sweet human boyfriend, Aiden, has a case of Fantastic Racism and does a Face–Heel Turn which leaves only the other Love Interest as a worthy pretendant for the heroine. Of course, it turns out that the remaining Love Interest (thanks to personal experience) can understand what the heroine is going through far more than she or the audience ever gave him credit for.
  • Cards on the Table: Flatmates Rhoda Dawes and Anne Meredith swiftly fall for Major Despard. Zigzagged as the former is tomboyish and down-to-earth but also the more assertive and worldly of the two, mostly Veronica traits. Anne is shy, mysterious, and seemingly rather sheltered and in need of protection, which would be Betty — but she's one of Shaitana's collection of supposed murderers. Anne solidifies her position as the jealous Veronica when she tries to Murder the Hypotenuse as she senses Despard's attention moving toward Rhoda; however, Anne also realizes that Rhoda is the only person who knows about her connection to the murder of her former employer, which also serves as motive for the murder.
  • In A Court of Thorns and Roses Tamlin is the hard-trying and romantic main love interest for Feyre while Rhysand is a dark love rival who might just be using her to his own ends (or to get a rise out of Tamlin). In book two trauma Tamlin faced causes him to lose the ability to understand Feyre while Rhysand, freed from his master in the first book, is revealed to be a genuinely good-hearted person who puts on a cold front to make people fear attacking his court. For bonus points, the high society way Tamlin is romanticized in the first book is later contrasted negatively against Rhysand's more humble and personable lifestyle.
  • In the Cutler Series, Dawn starts out dating the handsome, popular, and blond Philip Cutler who she views as her Prince Charming. Her other potential love interest is Jimmy who's dark-haired, a troublemaker at school, and also her brother, which makes the latent attraction between them feel very, very wrong to her. Things change completely when Dawn is revealed to be the long-thought-dead daughter of the Cutler family, making her and Jimmy Not Blood Siblings and her relationship with Philip suddenly taboo. In addition, Jimmy proves over the course of the series to be a kind and devoted boyfriend/husband to Dawn while Philip, in stark contrast, goes off the deep end when Dawn ends their relationship after the incest reveal and becomes a Yandere who repeatedly tries to rape Dawn and later on, her daughter Christie too.
  • Daniel Deronda: Mirah is Jewish, an outcast with an artistic and melancholy disposition, Gwendolene is charming, well-liked, and Christian. Gwendolene is also too self-involved, though in an understandable and harmful way, while Mirah is sweet and innocent.
  • The Empyrean: The story's initial Love Triangle sees Dain as the Betty, Violet's longtime Childhood Friend whom she's been in love with forever, and Xaden as the Veronica, the son of the man who allegedly killed her brother and who is initially hostile to her, and yet who Violet can't help but be insanely attracted to. Over the course of the story, however, the characters of both men become more dynamic: Dain proves unable to put Violet before himself and his beliefs and would rather smother her potential than let her grow, while Xaden grows to care for her beyond the sake of his own survival and is willing to be cruel to her if it means she can grow strong enough to protect herself. Violet chooses Xaden, a decision that proves to be the correct one at the end of the book after Dain betrays her trust and knowingly allows her to go on a mission that is almost certain to end in her death.
  • In Full Metal Panic!, Chidori, the Ordinary High-School Student seems to be the Betty, while Tessa, who is a captain in a covert paramilitary organization and has command of a submarine and several hundred troops, Sousuke included, appears to be the Veronica. However, Chidori is a hot-tempered Tsundere, which gives her more of a Veronica personality compared to Tessa, whose sweet and ditzy nature makes her the Betty personality-wise.
  • In Harry Potter, this happens with Severus Snape (initially Lily's unpopular best friend on the verge of becoming a Victorious Childhood Friend) and James Potter (initially a Jerk Jock whom she disapproves). She then not only discovers that James became a Lovable Jock because he Took a Level in Kindness, but painfully realizes that Severus is affected by Fantastic Racism. Made worse by how the second situation played out. Lily tried to help Severus after an almost Deadly Prank (in which the still-not-developed James did have a part), and not only he snaps at her, but he calls her racist epithets to her very face. It's implied that Lily was aware of Severus's racism but attempted to make him change his mind, but once he crossed the line like that, she decided to cut off the friendship for her own sake.
  • Hercule Poirot:
    • The Murder on the Links features one of these. Jack Renaud is engaged to Marthe Daubreuil (Betty), but had a brief fling with the vaudeville performer Bella Duveen (Veronica), who has been acting like a Stalker with a Crush ever since. However, it turns out that Bella really just wants Jack to be happy and is willing to confess to murder to protect him, even after she learns about Marthe. Marthe, on the other hand, is a Gold Digger and murderer who would have been willing to let Jack be executed for the crimes she committed.
    • In The Mystery of the Blue Train, bad-tempered, selfish and disreputable Derek Kettering and nice, dependable Major Knighton both fall in love with Katherine Grey. However, Kettering was a Gold Digger but turns out to have been honest in his intentions, innocent of murder, and a better man than even he believed himself to be, while Knighton is a thief, con artist, and murderer.
  • One could say this happened early in The Hunger Games. Gale is introduced as Katniss's closest friend and like her brother, while Peeta is the mysterious boy with the bread that she's never actually spoken to. They reverse roles very quickly after the audience finds out how rebellious Gale is and how sweet and smitten Peeta is.
  • In The Illuminae Files this happens with Jackson and Nik, Hanna's two love interests. As the book starts, Hanna is dating Jackson who is the traditionally handsome officer on the station they inhabit, while Nik is a bad boy drug dealer that flits with her. After the station is attacked by a commando team, with Nik and Hanna as the only two not accounted for, things start to change. By the end of the book, Jackson is revealed as The Mole who let the team onboard, while Nik is revealed to have only done jail time to protect his younger brother from their abusive father.
  • Mansfield Park has an interesting unmentioned objective variation for the heroine and antiheroine, respectively a quietly depressed, meek and forgiving Love Martyr Woobie and a manipulative, charming-but-dangerous Gold Digger. Turns out the first becomes an Iron Woobie who won't let the others' mean preoccupations go against her morals and knows perfectly well that the treatment borne by her gender is unfair, while the other falls in love, wangsts, and considers abandoning her ambitions and also losing integrity. The hero chooses the new Veronica, who throws a proto-feminist speech in his face, making the work Fair for Its Day.
  • Moonlight has Kayla with Mason and Lucas. She sees Mason as a Nice Guy and Lucas as a less kind and harmless person. However, the readers can see from early on that Mason is a Manipulative Bastard who is insulting to his rival and tries to make Kayla drunk, while Lucas ignores him and is simply kind to her, but has intimidating manners. It must be acknowledged once Mason does a Face Heel Turn.
  • In Pride and Prejudice, this happens to Elizabeth's love interests, subjectively. The Charmer Princely Young Man member of the military is actually a Manipulative Bastard Gold Digger. The Tall, Dark, and Snarky Love Interest has No Social Skills, and has a Good Is Not Nice Big Brother Instinct approach to life while being a member of The Proud Elite.
  • In A Room with a View, progressive and unconventional George Emerson is initially the Veronica; he kisses Lucy passionately without any of the "proper" courtship that Cecil Vyse (the initial Betty) goes through. However, George turns out to be the suitor who is far more suited to Lucy and more considerate of what she wants.
  • In The Sorcerer's Daughter, Siegfried views Odette as the Princess Classic in need of saving and Odile as a Hot Witch who is sent to seduce him. Later Odette is revealed to be a stern and proud Aloof Dark-Haired Girl who is in fact much more attracted to Rothbart while Odile is a sweet, gentle-hearted, and easy-going ingenue who, Siegfried realizes, suits him a lot more.
  • The Summer I Turned Pretty trilogy by Jenny Han revolves around the heroine Belly's romances with the sons of her mother's best friend. In the beginning, Conrad was the aloof bad boy while Jeremiah was the Nice Guy. In the last book, Jeremiah has become a somewhat obnoxious frat boy who cheats on Belly. Meanwhile, Conrad is mature and studious (and also gets the girl at the end.) Belly only saw them on family vacations in the summer so she's unsure if they (especially Jeremiah) were always like that and she never saw it or if they actually changed.
  • The Twilight Saga has Jacob and Edward, reaching It Was His Sled status. In book 1, they are respectively the kind younger friend and someone who was Maddened Into Misanthropy by his Dark and Troubled Past and may and may not be a case of "I Am a Humanitarian". But in book 2, Jacob becomes a violent and confident muscular hunk who has Hair-Trigger Temper tendencies, and Edward is the reliable boyfriend who ends up leaving her for what he summarizes in the end as I Want My Beloved to Be Happy.

    Live-Action TV 
  • As the World Turns: The Julia/Jack/Carly triangle started out with Julia as the Betty and Carly as the Veronica. Until Julia was turned into a psycho to make Jack leaving her for Carly more plausible.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer & Angel: Gender-flipped- Angel and Spike in their love triangle with Buffy. Angel seems to have the personality of a Betty while Spike has the personality of a Veronica, but as it turns out Spike is Betty since he's a self-proclaimed ("attainable") fool for love while Angel is the mysterious and "unattainable" Veronica.
  • In the Cold Case episode "Soul", the Victim of the Week was torn between these two archetypes. The Betty turned out to be his killer, devastated when he decided to be with the Veronica.
  • The Flash (2014) starts with Iris West stuck between her childhood friend Barry Allen and the comparatively more suave Detective Eddie Thawne. Eddie's quickly established to be a mellow, easygoing sort behind his public image, while Barry becomes the titular mysterious superhero.
  • General Hospital. Karen, the supposed "Betty", spent months flitting between two guys (who were themselves this trope to her), while the flirtatious Brenda (the "Veronica") slept with only one. Ten years later, Sage (the Veronica) was shown to have genuine feelings for Dillon (the Archie), despite her manipulative and conniving ways, while Georgie (the Betty) grew increasingly nasty and shrill (in all fairness, this was due to her frustration with Sage's relentless attempts at interfering in hers and Dillon's relationship).
  • Gilmore Girls has a onesided example. Jess was originally the Veronica to Dean's Betty. (The intellectual bad boy versus dependable boyfriend). But when he returned having turned his life around he was Betty to Logan's Veronica. (Old loyal boyfriend versus new, sophisticated boyfriend).
  • Glee
    • The show apparently has sweet but Hollywood Homely Rachel as Betty and popular but haughty Quinn as Veronica to Finn's Archie. This is subverted in the episode "Original Songs," when Quinn explains to Rachel that, however things might appear, she, Quinn, is actually the girl-next-door whom Finn will end up settling for, and Rachel is really the unattainable fantasy dream-girl.
    Quinn: Do you want to know how this story plays out? I get Finn, you get heartbroken. I'll become a successful real estate agent and Finn will take over Kurt's dad's tire shop. You don't belong here, Rachel, and you can't hate me for helping to send you on your way.
    • Happens to Santana. She's usually the Veronica in a love triangle, but whenever Brittany is concerned, she instantly becomes the Betty.
  • In Merlin, Gwen's love interests are Lancelot and Arthur. Early on, Lancelot (commoner, honorable and loyal to the point of being impractical, falls for Gwen at first sight) is the Betty to Arthur's Veronica (Royal Brat prince). Then while Lancelot takes himself out of the Love Triangle, Arthur undergoes levels of Character Development, and the two fall in love. When Lancelot dies and is brought back to life he becomes the Veronica, with Arthur as Betty.
  • Riverdale does this with the Betty and Veronica. Over the course of the first season, Betty becomes an Amateur Sleuth who frequently puts herself in danger all to solve the mystery of Jason Blossom's murder - also showing that the sweetheart persona is partly due to her doing some serious repression. Veronica meanwhile is the Fallen Princess who becomes a Lovable Alpha Bitch and proves to be the more level-headed of the two girls.
  • The BBC's Robin Hood series
    • Marian had the choice between Robin and Guy, who were quickly revealed to be more than they first appeared. Guy is conservative and law-abiding (Betty) but also dangerous and a torturer (Veronica), whereas Robin was an outlaw and a thief (Veronica) but also Marian's childhood sweetheart, Robin Hood, and much more in love than he first appeared (Betty).
    • It can also be argued to happen between Isabella and Kate for Robin. The first may be the seductive aristocratic and morally ambiguous antagonist and Angry Sheriff's Beautiful Sister and Kate the Farm Girl who joined the outlaws, but Isabella is a Tragic Villain who tries to get rid of her rival by diminishing Robin's trust in her... while the Farm Girl simply tries to kill the noble-born rival. Unlike Isabella, Kate didn't have the excuse of growing paranoid due to years of abuse by a sadistic husband, so the line is at least blurred.
  • Sabrina the Teenage Witch parodies this in an episode where sun spots cause Sabrina to swap personalities with the Alpha Bitch Libby. Their qualities become exaggerated to the point where Sabrina now plots to take over the world, and Libby becomes a sickeningly sweet Friend to All Living Things.
  • In The Secret Circle, the live-action adaptation of the book series, Cassie initially appears to be a timid and shy Girl Next Door. For Diana, she is a confident and mature witch. As the series progresses, Cassie becomes more extroverted, ambitious, and willing to use her dark magic, but Diana grows more isolated and more cautious about the consequences of their actions. The point is driven home when Diana learns that she has dark magic as well. She makes it very clear that she will not be as reckless with it as Cassie is. This is in contrast to their initial characterizations, Cassie desiring to stay away from the circle, and Diana to embrace their birthright as witches. Adam's interests tend towards which girl is more The Veronica at any given time. He is initially dating Diana, (she is a Victorious Childhood Friend), they break up as the personality shift starts, and he starts dating Cassie a few episodes later.
  • It happened in True Blood, after Erik's amnesia (which ended up turning him into a Manchild, and then into something closer from a Nice Guy) and Bill's acquisition of the title of King (which ended up making him a powerful authoritative villain). The first had blond hair all along, and the second has brown hair from the beginning, so they both ended up filling their new function better than before.
  • A male Rich Suitor, Poor Suitor example appears in an episode of The Twilight Zone (1959). A young woman has two suitors, a rich one she doesn't care for and a poor one she does. The poor one asks her to run off with him. Her future self later chases her younger self on horseback, begging her not to marry the wrong man... the poor suitor, who turned out to be a money-hungry bastard and ruined her life.
  • The Vampire Diaries has the switch take place over the third and fourth seasons between Stefan and Damon, previously Betty and Veronica, respectively. Damon not only starts showing more of his humanity to his love interest but also becomes the un-judgmental, reliable friend to Elena who "like[s] her either way" after she has been turned into a vampire and murdered Connor; all the while Stefan switches off his humanity and becomes the Ripper of Monterrey once again, and later goes to the extreme of risking Jeremy's life and secretly allying with Klaus in order to make Vampire!Elena the person he wants her to be. Elena shows the tendency to prefer Betty, starting off the series being with the sweet, caring Stefan and later breaking up with him to be with Damon.


  • In Carmen, one of the two love triangles becomes this. In the beginning, it looks like, for Carmen, Don José is a sweet and weak-willed young man while Escamillo is a dashing hammy toreador. Eventually, it is made clear that Escamillo is a laid-back Nice Guy (who also realizes that while he loves Carmen, she is a free spirit), and Don José is (partly due to Carmen's own influence) a Crazy Jealous Guy who ends up killing Carmen rather than see her love another.
  • In Jenufa, at least in the titular character's eyes, the charming and friendly Boy Next Door Števa is the Betty and the passionate Stalker with a Crush Laca who cuts Jenufa's cheek in a fit of jealousy is the Veronica. Until Števa turns out to be a sheer jerkass who abandons Jenufa and their child as soon as the girl is scarred and loses her beauty while Laca gently comforts her and stands by her side no matter what, vowing to spend all his life atoning for his previous violence.

    Video Games 
  • Luca and Cloche from Ar tonelico II: Melody of Metafalica. Luca starts off as a cheerful and easygoing local girlfriend while Cloche is a spoiled princess. As the game goes on, Cloche mellows down her attitudes while Luca shows more and more of her bad and selfish sides. Luca does get better, but by the end of the game, Cloche turns out more of a Betty than Luca is.
  • Batman: The Telltale Series has Vikki Vale and Selina Kyle. Vikki Vale is a hard nose but very well-meaning reporter while Selina Kyle is a mysterious thrill-loving criminal. Then it turns out Vikki Vale is really the story's true Big Bad Lady Arkham, while Selina Kyle has plenty of Hidden Depths and actually does care about those around her for the most part.
  • Catherine: Full Body actually reverses the dynamic between Katherine and Catherine in the new endings. Katherine yearns for a new life and becomes a successful model with a lot of wealthy admirers (and shows she can pull off the sultry little red number). Catherine gives up her life as a succubus and uses Time Travel to become Vincent's human girlfriend in high school, and they become Happily Married.
  • Dark Messiah of Might and Magic gives Sareth two love interests. Xana is a sultry and flirtatious succubus who is clearly the girlfriend literally straight out of hell. Lena is a sweet and affectionate mage and the niece of the main questline's questgiver. However, in practice, Xana is always honest with Sareth, offers invaluable aid, and even saves his life. While Lena makes Sareth do all the difficult and dangerous work, and upon learning of the existence of Xana she immediately demands that Sareth make a detour to a church and murder Xana. If Sareth doesn't, Lena accuses Sareth of betraying her and attacks him. That's right, the seeming Betty also wants to Murder the Hypotenuse. That said, siding with Lena is treated as the good path while siding with Xana is treated as the evil path, largely due to Xana's attachment to Sareth's father who is evil.
  • In the backstory of Digital Devil Saga, Sheffield appears to care for Sera, but in reality, he's a Manipulative Bastard and regards her as little more than a tool for his own gain, while O'Brien genuinely cares for her but struggles to express his feelings and always ends up displaying a hostile exterior whenever they're together. Sheffield's murder of O'Brien causes Sera to realise the truth.
  • Dragon Age:
    • Dragon Age: Origins has Leliana and Morrigan. Leliana is the sweet Chantry sister while Morrigan is the mysterious Witch of the Wilds. It is later revealed that Leliana is a former bard (read: spy and assassin) who took shelter in the Chantry to hide from the Orlesian military who (incorrectly) believes she sold secrets to Ferelden. Meanwhile, Morrigan is really just a young, inexperienced girl whose 'survival of the fittest' beliefs are just parroting her mother's.
    • Dragon Age II has Merrill and Isabela. The former is a Cloudcuckoolander with No Social Skills with innocent-looking puppy eyes while the latter is a promiscuous pirate into both men and woman and is more willing to express it than the other companions]]. However, one turns out to be a Blood Mage trying to save her people via consequentialist methods while the other is a Broken Bird trying to cope with the memory of Parental Abandonment and can be persuaded to fully commit to love.
      • The male love interests can pull this as well. While Anders has a dash of Veronica in act 1—he's an apostate revolutionary fighting alongside his fellow mages—he's mostly set up as a Betty, being a blond, soft-hearted healer and cat lover. Fenris is more clearly a Veronica: aloof, brooding, surly, and short-tempered with a Dark and Troubled Past. By the end of Act 3, Fenris has gotten his life back together and warmed up to his friends (especially if he's romanced), while Anders has blown up the Chantry and kickstarted the mage-Templar war, going on the run as a fugitive. It's even more clear with Sebastian, a Chantry brother kind, pious Betty, who will raise an army to raze Kirkwall if Anders isn't brought to justice.
    • Ten years later after Origins, in Dragon Age: Inquisition, Leliana is serving as the left hand of Divine Justinia, doing the dirty work the Divine can't be publicly involved in while Morrigan is (potentially) married in all but name to the Warden and raising a son with him, both of whom she is completely devoted to.
      • Blackwall and the Iron Bull are set up as Betty and Veronica, respectively, but Blackwall turns out to be a former war criminal hiding his real identity while Bull falls in love with and stays completely devoted to the player... if they made the right choices. (Cullen and Solas are both Bettys, but Solas switches sides in a major way when he's revealed as Fen'harel, the Elven trickster god, who wants to destroy the world and remake it the way it used to be.
  • In Final Fantasy VII, you may guess from the manual that the miniskirted, tank-punching terrorist Tifa is the Veronica, while the beautiful flower girl dressed all in pink Aerith is the Betty. Enjoy it when Tifa's introduced in a semi-domestic setting talking about her history as Cloud's next-door neighbour, and when Aerith's introduced in a sequence where she laughs at Cloud for accidentally making a sexual Double Entendre before getting him to take her to the city's red light district.
  • As the Fire Emblem has many prospect love triangles, more than one Betty and Veronica situation can be twisted around:
    • In Fire Emblem: Awakening, while Chrom's first Implied Love Interest Sumia is an excellent example of a Betty, the supposed Veronica aka the Female Avatar aka Chrom's other ILI is a blend of both Veronica and Betty. The Veronica part comes from her being being an amnesiac Mysterious Waif and potentially having rather refined looks (if the player chooses the more aloof-looking Build 3), while the Betty part comes from her Team Mom traits and her potentially super child-like appearance (if the very cutesy Build 2 is chosen, or the more average Build 1 is "spiced up" with Girlish Pigtails)
    • In Fire Emblem Fates, the Female Avatar has her Childhood Friend/Battle Butler Jakob as a potential Betty and the Chick Magnet Ninja Kaze as her Veronica... or would, if Jakob wasn't a male Tsundere and kind of a Jerkass to anyone but her, and if Kaze wasn't a pretty much perfect Nice Guy save for being from another land.
  • Persona 5 has your two younger party members Futaba and Ann. It can be easy to assume that Futaba is the Betty because she is afraid of social interaction at first and Ann is the Veronica due to her quarter-Caucasian heritage and being a part-time model. As the story comes along, however, it turns out that Ann is really a nice person that wants to inspire her friends while Futaba once she breaks out of her shell is quite mischievous and brutally honest about her opinions.

    Visual Novels 
  • In The Reveal of ClockUp's Euphoria, Kanae is the real Evil Genius mastermind behind the plot, who had been giving Keisuke Fake Memories as part of a huge lab experiment; and Nemu, made out to be the cold Alpha Bitch Hate Sink in the simulations, is Keisuke's real and sweet Childhood Friend.
  • In School Days, Sekai Saionji seems to be a straightforward Veronica (middle-class, a Genki Girl, very straightforward in her thoughts), while Kotonoha Katsura looks like quite the Betty (rich but also humble, soft-spoken and shy, very booksmart). However, depending on how the player/s follow the original game or the Updated Re-release, either of them can go dangerously over the edge for one or another reason, often involving quite the Break the Cutie. On one hand, Sekai can murder Makoto after a huge misunderstanding caused by something he really shouldn't have said (both games), go mad after being to broken - then push Kotonoha over a train rail right after she and Makoto get together (with different results) (re-release) or stab Kotonoha and leave her to bleed to death (re-release). On the other, Kotonoha can use her sexuality to blackmail Makoto into leaving Sekai (both), snap after being bullied into insanity by Sekai's "friends" and give Sekai a Slashed Throat in broad daylight (both), or go the Spurned into Suicide way via throwing herself off a building in front of both Sekai and Makoto (both).

    Web Originals 

     Western Animation 
  • The Dragon Prince: For Callum, Claudia starts out as the Betty quirky sorceress childhood friend and Rayla the Veronica (exotic elven assassin with sarcasm issues). Gradually, Claudia starts taking after her father, while Rayla's nobler and nicer traits come to the surface and she and Callum warm up to each other.
  • Garfield's Babes and Bullets: Sam Spayed is torn between his client Tanya, whom he profiles as The Vamp who probably killed her husband, and Kitty, his Nice Girl of a secretary. It's revealed that Tanya was faithful to her husband while he was alive, and Kitty was tempted to lure Professor O'Tabby away from Tanya because she loved him, though she ultimately didn't go through with it. At the end, Tanya tells Sam any romantic relationship between them won't work, and Kitty seduces the detective with milk.
  • Star vs. the Forces of Evil:
    • Marco Diaz's two biggest love interests on the show share both Betty and Veronica traits. Jackie Lynn Thomas is the Betty in that she's the Girl Next Door First Love who he's known since childhood, while Star Butterfly is the Veronica in that she's the magical princess from another world who's not what he's used to and seemingly unattainable due to her Royal Blood. On the other hand, Jackie is the Veronica in that she is Marco's dream girl and the one he (originally) favors over Star, while Star herself is the Betty in that she is the best friend who harbors an unrequited (at first) crush on him.
    • In later seasons, Marco becomes the opposing love interest himself for Star, with Tom Lucitor being the third person in their Love Triangle. Marco is her down-to-earth best friend who is now pining for her while she is in a relationship with someone else, which should make him the Betty, with Tom's high status and wealth and fiery temper and personality cementing him as the Veronica. However, Tom is actually a Jerk with a Heart of Gold who was Star's First Love and desperate for her to love him in season 1, and is a part of her world of princes and princesses, which would also make him the Betty. On the other end of the triangle, Marco being outside of Star's social circles and initial refusal of her feelings in season 2, doubled with the few times he let his ego get the best of him, would make him the Veronica.