Follow TV Tropes

Following

Beware the Silly Ones

Go To

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/gluttony_silly_250_2502.jpg
He'll go back to being adorable once he's through eating you.

Mr. Croup: You find us funny, Monsieur le Marquis, do you not? A source of amusement. Is that not so? With our pretty clothes, and our convoluted circumlocutions-
Mr. Vandemar: (murmuring) I haven't got a circumlo...
Mr. Croup: -and our little silliness of manner and behavior. And perhaps we are funny. [...] But you must never imagine, that just because something is funny, Monsieur le Marquis, it is not dangerous.
Advertisement:

So you've got a person who might fulfill the role of comedic relief. For the most part, both the fans and the characters in-story see them as just a great big doofus. Possibly, they spend more time acting ridiculous or laughing in the face of Serious Business than getting dangerous. Sure, they might rant up and down about how they're going to conquer the world in the name of Evil with a capital E or drive the villains to suicide through bad jokes, but in the end they seem to pose little threat to all present.

There's just one thing most people forget: acting silly does not mean you aren't a One-Man Army. The villain can be really dangerous despite being Laughably Evil; in fact, their silly nature may even add to their evil because of the unexpectedness of it. It could be a façade. It could be that they just do it for the lulz. Or maybe they are so badass that they find even the most dangerous scenario to be either just a joke or just a daily, normal thing. A well-hidden Berserk Button can be pressed. In any case, beware the silly ones.

Advertisement:

Often achieved by way of Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass. Can be a variation of Underestimating Badassery. Compare Harmless Villain and Not-So-Harmless Villain. Also compare Fighting Clown. Contrast Miles Gloriosus. May overlap with Cloudcuckoolander, at least by appearances. Helps avoid having to Shoo Out the Clowns. If it's this same silliness that makes them dangerous, it may overlap with Success Through Insanity. May make you liable to Threat Backfire. See also Beware the Nice Ones if they're kind and caring and Beware the Quiet Ones if they're known for their near silence. In case the silly one is just acting silly and is actually downright serious, that's Obfuscating Stupidity.


Advertisement:

Example subpages:

Other examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Music 
  • Norman Sheffield was the first manager of the band Queen, and (allegedly) decided to take financial advantage of the newly-famous musicians, them being naive to the world of recording contracts and such. The leader of these goofy longhaired glam rockers later wrote "Death on Two Legs", which he said was "Dedicated to a motherfucker of a gentleman", and filled with so many acidic insults it was essentially a musical "The Reason You Suck" Speech.

    Podcast 
  • The Tres Horny Boys of The Adventure Zone: Balance are incredibly silly and crack jokes wherever they go. Working together, however, they can be a force to be reckoned with.
    • Special mention should go to Taako, who's definitely the wackiest of the group. He's a Lovable Coward who's named after tacos, has an absurdly high-pitched and squeaky voice, keeps loose pudding in his pockets, and highly enjoys fucking with people. He's also a hyper-competent Transmutation Wizard and Guile Hero, who uses his powers in incredibly creative ways to get the upper hand on enemies, and has a way of manipulating people that easily gets him what he wants.
  • In The Hidden Almanac, Pastor Drom is usually the ditzy comic relief. When Mord asks Drom how she would conquer a technologically advanced society, her answer involves two asteroids, nuclear winter, and food laced with highly addictive drugs. She also keeps a shotgun under her bed, a second one under the sink, and a pistol.
  • Doug Eiffel from Wolf 359 speaks mostly in pop-culture references, is willing to lock himself in a freezing room for 16 hours over a tube of toothpaste and refuses any plan that contains violence in any way. He's also a recovering alcoholic and a convicted felon, outsmarted a scientific genius with nothing but a cigarette and a voice modifier, survived 180 days in a non-functioning spacecraft by repeatedly freezing himself to the point where the cell damage caused his hair and nails to fall out, and the thing that gets him to break his Actual Pacifist status and kick someone's ass is when Kepler threatens his deaf daughter.
  • This happens with Morton Koopa in the Interstitial Actual Play one-shot ''A Rush of Sugar to the Head. He's an absolute goof with a silly voice and consistently cheerful demeanour regardless of his situation. He murders Wreck-It Ralph with a hammer.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • A case of Hoist by His Own Petard: Sometimes, Heels in ECW would throw out open challenges and the worst they would leave with was a bruised ego. After Justin Credible d. Chris Chetti at ECW Ultimate Jeopardy 97, November 8, 1997 (televised on the November 15th show), his manager Jason "The Sexiest Man on Earth" got on the mic and talked about how, out of 30 or so guys in the locker room, he was one of the few who could actually wrestle and that "it sucks" only working as a manager. So, since he was in his "street clothes," he issued an open challenge for a "street fight." Cue "Let Me Clear My Throat" by DJ Kool, and out comes...The Blue Meanie with Super Nova? Jason dismisses Meanie at first, but finally agrees. While it's not much of a match, and even less of a "street fight" (referee John Finnegan blocks Meanie from attacking when Jason ducks his head through the ropes), it qualifies as Jason basically treats Meanie as a joke the whole time...until Meanie comes up with a testicular claw into a schoolboy rollup for the pin! (For an example of how much worse this could have turned out for Jason, see Too Dumb To Live.)

    Puppet Shows 
  • Miss Piggy, full stop. She's a veritable empress among drama queens, insufferably vain, yet charmingly foppish, and is constantly comedically pining for the love of her employer, Kermit The Frog, who, half the time, doesn't notice her affections, and the other half is living in mortal fear of her affections. But, don't forget that a large part of her charm is that she's also a take-charge Action Girl who can become a Person of Mass Destruction at the drop of a (designer) hat. Plus, don't press her buttons if you want to live, i.e., don't insult her or her abilities, don't ever threaten her loved ones, and most importantly, don't make pork jokes in her presence. Well, you can if you want to, but, as The Muppet Movie demonstrated, she'll then open a six-pack of extra-strength whoopass on your minions, and violently install you in your own Mind Rape device with extreme prejudice.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The Yu-Gi-Oh! game has its share:
    • Wind-Ups are a bunch of cards that look like Cute Machines, but once had a strategy called a "Wind-Up Lock" so lethal that several of the key cards were Limited or Banned completely.
    • Gadgets are cards with monsters that look like Funny Robots, and yet, they were once part of the obscenely-powerful "Crumbling Tower" strategy that required them to be Limited and Elemental Hero Stratos Banned.
    • The Madolche are monsters that look like the residents of some cloyingly sweet Sugar Bowl, but more support, including Hootcake and Puddingcess' Xyz form quickly made them a force to be reckoned with.
    • At one point, there was an extremely popular deck combining some of the most powerful pendulum monsters in the game. The deck was nicknamed Pepe, and some of the key cards include a plushie, a clown, a couple of guys in silly hats, and a cartoon monkey with a gigantic grin.
  • Clan Malkavian from Vampire: The Masquerade is one and all incurably insane in some form or another. Some insanities may be "harmless," but the nutjobs are still vampires with all the inhuman strength and resilience that entails. If the guy babbling in the corner thinks you're interrupting the conversation with the voices in his head, they might convince him to tear your arms out and beat you to death with the wet ends. Oh, and one of their clan skills, the one that scares the hell out of other clans, is to "share" their madness with you if they feel like doing so, which makes the aforementioned death look preferable.
    • Clan Toreador are stereotyped as being snobby, high-culture posers who obsess over art and fashion. However, several vampires have found to their great loss that clan Toreador's focus on social interaction makes them excellent investigators and interrogators, to the point that a surprising number of Sheriffs are Toreador. On top of that, the clan's innate abilities involve supernatural speed and perception, meaning that any Toreador can become a highly functional gunslinger, should the need arise. Then there's the Toreador whose chosen art is swordplay or marksmanship... let's just say that everyone minds their pleases and thank yous around those vampires.
  • Princesses of Spades from Princess: The Hopeful have an ideal based on outside the box thinking and spreading humor, which has resulted in them gaining a reputation as lazy and immature pranksters. The crossover section of the game's wiki, however, mentions that some of them managed to con some of the True Fae into leaving the physical world forever.

    Visual Novels 
  • There are quite a few comic-relief characters in the Ace Attorney series, several of which have committed crimes.
  • Akiko in Akatsuki no Goei is incredibly silly and tends to flirt with Kaito despite being his mother's age even if she doesn't look it. However, people who know her well are actually scared of her. For good reason, given that she blackmails Satake for trying to hide Kaito's past from him and even Genzou will not act against her. She even calls him Genzou-kun like he was still a student and gets away with it.
  • Haruka from My Harem Heaven is Yandere Hell is peppy and energetic and she can get carried away with herself sometimes. Unfortunately, she's clingy and possessive of Yuuya and is also one of the Yanderes available.
  • Hatoful Boyfriend is a game in which the silliest characters often turn out to be the most dangerous. Your maths teacher is constantly falling asleep and is rather airheaded even aside from that, but he's using a false identity to fulfill a quest for vengeance and is fully willing to kill for his goals. That weird manga club kid who acts like he's a YA hero all the time actually produces hallucinogenic pheromones which he's not immune to but which he can use to draw others in and thwart them in the strangest way imaginable. The developmentally delayed track team captain spends the majority of his route talking about pudding and freaking out over the strangest things, only for it to turn out that he is a Physical God who in his route ascends to the heavens and remakes reality in his image. Generally speaking, nobirdie in Littledove Hachiman City should be underestimated for even a second, because they're all very capable of some very strange things, and when more than one of these characters cross paths it tends to turn the game into a horror game or make it awesome.
  • Doki Doki Literature Club! has Monika, who at first seems like your standard High School Girl from a typical Harem; adorable, peppy, and overall quirky, especially when it came to literature. However, after progressing through the game and having to deal with your best friend's suicide, horrible glitches and visuals, and the deteriorating mental health of one of your possible love interests, you then uncover the source behind these horrors: Monika, who has been Self-aware since the beginning and is a flat out Reality Warper who's fully willing to tamper with the game's code, mess with the girls' personalities, and even delete the remaining girls herself from the game's code in order to make sure she has you to herself. Her actions alone shift the game into Psychological Horror.

    Webcomics 
  • 8-Bit Theater:
    • Black Mage is The Chew Toy and spends most of his time stabbing Fighter and failing to get into White Mage's pants. A few times, however, he's acquired enough power that he decides he doesn't need his companions. On these occasions, he shows in no uncertain terms that he's not joking about being an Omnicidal Maniac, and he has come very close to wiping out reality. On one occasion, he finally succeeded in murdering the rest of the Light Warriors only for Sarda to resurrect them just to screw with Black Mage. In fact, he's a Chew Toy precisely because he is so dangerous; it's in reality's best interests to keep him both abused and alive, because the abuse keeps him distracted from any actual goals and the last time he died he took over Hell and nearly tore reality to shreds.
    • Fighter himself is too stupid for it to be adequately explained by words. His explanation for why he had never seen an Invisible Sky Castle before was that, he figured, they're quite rare (the fact that he isn't technically wrong made Black Mage go crosseyed). He's also the most generally amicable member of the Light Warriors, again to the point of stupidity. But when confronted by his Inner Demon, Sloth, that told him he needed to stop being lazy and work out his brain as well as his sword play, he effortlessly cut it to ribbons and moved on. His brain told him that was faster. He, for reasons probably not even known by Fighter himself, genuinely considers Black Mage a friend, and when others were considering doing something about Black Mage for the good of existence in general, he dropped hints that such actions would end very poorly if taken while he was around. In a fashion that makes one wonder how stupid he actually is. And when Black Mage finally took his cartoonish supervillainy so far even Fighter squared up to stop him, Fighter's ability to block literally anything led to the fight coming to a standstill until Black Mage distracted him. On the odd occasion Fighter's singular brain cell fires, he's arguably the most dangerous of the four Light Warriors.
  • Khrima from Adventurers! spends most of the story as comic relief, since he's laughably bad at conceiving with evil plans and his minions are (for the most part) about as threatening as a wet sock. It's hard to take him seriously as an Evil Overlord, especially when compared to Eternion later on. Despite all this, he still manages to be a very tough Final Boss with no less than four One-Winged Angel forms.
  • Silver from The Angel with Black Wings seems like she's goofing off and just pulling harmless pranks with people but she can get very strict when it comes to the angels rules and also one of the powerful angels in the series.
  • There are a lot of downright clownish characters in Awful Hospital. Almost all of them have it within themselves to bring you to a gruesome end. Given that the titular hospital's located in the Noisy Tenant universe, which you can see in the Web Original folder, it's only natural.
  • Cucumber Quest: YA BOY NOISEMASTER, the second of the Disaster Masters to show up. While smarter than the first he's a colorful hammy DJ who's Jive Turkey demeanor hides a cunning mind. His "hype man" personality is later revealed to be an act used to annoy his boss, and underneath that he resents the Nightmare Knight and tries to defy his role in the story by blowing up an entire city.
  • Marmalade was introduced as a harmless mook in Dark Legacy Comics but when he became self-aware, he became a monster.
  • Lord Kyran from Emergency Exit is usually depicted as both silly and harmless then you get moments like this and this.
  • Girl Genius:
    • The Jaegermonsters known as da Boyz are variously-hued, apparently dim (except for Dimo, who is often the Only Sane Man of the trio) Funetik Aksent speaking comic relief...until it's time to fight, and then readers are reminded that they are brightly-colored Mad Science-engineered Super Soldiers who do not just have pointy teeth and sharp nails for decoration.
    • Hell, just Jaegers in general. They all have that accent, all of them like their hats big and shiny, and all of them would joyfully run into a huge, bloody battlefield like a kid would into an amusement park, before tearing up entire squadrons barehanded. Even their generals, who are several centuries old, have no qualms joking around in a skirmish, to the point four of them decided to have a little body-count competition, with one of them spending most of the battle getting the rules straightened out, during an invasion on their hometown. And they stomped the everloving hell out of the invaders, with the general that wasted most of the battle winning the competition by way of blowing up the airship carrying the entire force.
  • Coyote in Gunnerkrigg Court has incredible power at his command. Most of the time, he just uses it to have fun without causing (too much) trouble. On occasion, however, he uses it for very cruel acts.
  • Homestuck:
    • Gamzee goes from a goofy, stoner Love Freak while drugged out on sopor slime to a frighteningly effective Slasher-esque killer when sober.
    • The Courtyard Droll counts too. Despite working for the evil Dersites, he's a Cloudcuckoolander whose version of torture involves swapping hats with someone - and a terrifyingly effective assassin with a bodycount that includes both Jade and Jake's dreamself. For comparison, Hegemonic Brute, The Big Guy of the agents, managed to accumulate zero kills before his death in both universes.
    • John, Jade and Nepeta also count. With the exception of Gamzee, they are the silliest of the heroes. Nepeta is able to kill large wild animals with her bare hands, John, upon becoming a wind god, creates a massive tornado which he uses to drill to the centre of a planet to retrieve a massive bomb, In Cascade, he creates lava tornadoes and defeats the largest enemy seen in the game with a single hit, and sometime later becomes the first person to land a hit on Bec Noir, dealing about 1/10th of his health in damage off of one hit. When Jade reaches God Tier, she becomes fused with her 'dog' Becquerel, making her probably the strongest member of the group.
  • I'm the Grim Reaper: Chase. He may seem like a nerdy dork (and likely is one), but a good amount of that is Obfuscating Stupidity. He is far more smarter than he looks, has a manipulative streak, and even nearly beats a man to death after he shot Scarlet and Chase thought she died.
  • It's Walky!:
    • Head Alien generally comes off as a cartoon villain, constantly dreaming up plans doomed to be easily foiled by the introduction of the heroes, who never passes up the opportunity to show his love for dramatic tension, even when doing so hinders or even cripples his plans. He always managing to further some goal every time he is effortlessly crushed, and all it takes is a moment of talking before he's got you trapped with a Breaking Speech, eating out of his hand doing exactly what he wants.
    • The title character himself counts, considering he spends much of the series as a Manchild. Even if it's partly an act.
  • Sparky from The Last Mechanical Monster. A ninety-nine year old supervillain who's completely out of touch with modern society after serving a sixty-four year prison sentence. Pretty amusing comedy there, right up until he restores one of his flying, flame throwing robots...
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • Xykon spends much of his time as borderline comic relief: much of his villainy appears to be of the card carrying variety, and many of his interactions with his supposed subordinate Redcloak imply that the latter is the far more intelligent of the two. This all obscures the fact that Xykon scares the pants off of Redcloak; even though he's the high priest of an evil god, Redcloak's goal is equality for goblins, orcs, and other races that are normally just cannon fodder, while Xykon's goal is more or less "Take Over the World and inflict as much pain and mayhem as undeadly possible".
    • Even with the heroes out to stop him, he's a credible threat to the entire world. They kind of beat him the first time kind of by accident, but since then they've been lucky to get away with their lives when tackling him (and not always so lucky), and that's with him conquering a city and beating its forces at the same time. (With Redcloak's help.)
    • The time when he took on the entire roomful of Sapphire Guard makes this even more apparent. He starts out by tossing a super bouncy ball at them, which was inscribed with a Symbol of Insanity that made them kill each other. Xykon got a whole lot less funny all of a sudden. He even commented that he could've just kept to the air and blast all of them. The only reason he had the Sapphire Guard kill each other was because he thought it would be "going the extra mile".
    • Xykon's Batman Gambit in The Order of the Stick: Start of Darkness: Xykon tempted Redcloak into killing his brother Right-Eye to protect him. The Breaking Speech that follows speaks for itself.
      Xykon: So therefore, you're just going to continue following me and doing whatever I order you to do. Because as long as you're loyal to me, I'll let you pretend this never happened. We'll just go about our daily business, and you can hide from the horrifying truth of what you've become - namely, a murderer who just killed his baby brother in cold blood. And hey, we can pretend that you don't really have any options about any of the despicable actions I ask you to take here on out rather than acknowledging that, like Right-Eye, you do in fact have a choice. But unlike Right-Eye there, you're too chickenshit to ever make it. You'll obey me forever now, because I give you an excuse for your inexcusable behavior. Now, are you going to stand there and tell me I'm wrong? Didn't think so.
    • Also, Elan, as Kubota found out the hard way. Bards can already be surprisingly dangerous, and ever since Elan took a prestige class that gives him special abilities and bonuses based on swashbuckler novel-esque narrative conventions he's become a very competent battler. He will crack a terrible pun with every thrust of his rapier, and the pun will make it strike true and hard.
    • In the Linear Guild, Thog the half-orc. Because he's a funny, ditzy, childlike blithe spirit, people (readers especially) tend to forget that he's a killing machine prone to Unstoppable Rages when he gets bored (like, say, if he runs out of ice cream).
    • The Monster in the Dark is this in two directions simultaneously. Firstly, it was introduced as a terrible monstrosity only to turn out to be somewhat dim-witted and quite possibly harmless. Secondly, after spending a long time behaving in a very child-like and friendly manner and doing nothing else, we got a few clues that the MitD might in fact be an exceptionally powerful (and thus potentially dangerous) creature. Its true nature has yet to be revealed, but from what we know, his very lightest whack will send you flying through the nearest wall, and a stomp of his creates minor earthquakes, among other mysterious feats. Most recently he joined Xykon, Redcloak, and a new character in clearing out a cave full of monsters. All the others came out visibly damaged - including Xykon! The Monster in the Darkness comes out still carrying his bucket of red paint. As in, he presumably did it all one handed.
  • Brian Souballo, from Our Little Adventure. He is hard to take seriously as the Big Bad as he's friendly and a bit of a Cloudcuckoolander. His cheerful demeanor was only ruined once by an old magic teacher he was trying to recruit for the empire. Read about it.
  • Tiffany of Precocious spends most of her time painting on walls, sleeping in an adorable manner, and digging in her backyard when some random whimsy doesn't strike her. But she also has a non-aggression pact with the local mob.
  • Jareth from Roommates. Let's see he seems like a keet, blond, prankster with questionable level of self-preservation instinct who only wants to have fun. Did we mention that he can warp time and space? Manipulate memories and dreams and more? And he also has a Superpowered Evil Side not above trying to kill his own friends (almost succeeded only a Chekhov's Skill saved them first time, the second he actually killed his best friend (who took the shot for the Love Interest / Morality Chain), he got better but still).
  • Sluggy Freelance: Torg is ina wacky mood! Then there's the beware part.
  • Ben from Weak Hero is a goofball, and most of the time doesn't seem to have a worry in the world. Even as the rest of the school labours under the influence of the Union, Ben can be seen having a great time messing around with his friends. That isn't to say that he doesn't care- as soon as the Union try to mess with the ones he cares about, he more than demonstrates how he earned the nickname Big Ben.
  • Yet Another Fantasy Gamer Comic:

    Web Original 
  • At times, Dr. Insano of The Spoony Experiment and Atop the Fourth Wall seems like an Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain, but there have been times where he's been a somewhat legit menace, such as the times he took control of the giant robot Neutro, discovered the Anti-Comic Equation (with Warrior #1, a comic so irredeemably awful it distorted the space-time continuum), and hired Squall to assassinate Spoony. Despite all this, Spoony still let him assist him with the review of the awful film, The Clones Of Bruce Lee.
    • One could argue that wasn't exactly a reward for good behavior.
    • Also, according to some interpretations of the Continuity Snarl, that one was a clone.
  • The Noisy Tenant series of Creepypasta is an entire mythology of this. It's an entire building complex of whimsical, decrepit recreations/mockeries of modern places, like Silent Hill designed by the same people who did Pee-wee's Playhouse. And it's filled with funny and whimsical inhabitants like Dr. Phage, a smiling man-sized bactereophage with a ridiculous bow-tie who performs horrible and unnecessary surgeries on people who end up in his office. Or Harmburger, a tottering anthropomorphic hamburger who tries to slaughter people in his freezer of alien meats or, with the help of similarly whimsical/horrible cronies resembling an anthropomorphised barbecue grill and meat grinder, brainwashes all of humanity with his tainted meat, which also infects them with horrible parasitoid brain-flies that are then sold to some other dimension, in the burgrr.com ARG/creepypasta.
  • The Evil League of Evil in Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog features such silly gimmicks as Dead Bowie and Fake Thomas Jefferson, but they're all unrepentant murderers at the very least.
    • It says something that the League's leader is a horse that seems to be universally recognized as the embodiment of all evil.
  • If the Emperor Had a Text-to-Speech Device has a few examples:
    • "Little Kitten". He's the series' Butt-Monkey, constantly insulted by everyone and Comically Missing the Point half of the time. He's also the Captain-General of the Custodes and capable of calling down copious amounts of whoopass: He's shown good enough aim and reflexes to shoot a flipped coin out of the air to make sure it landed the way he wanted it to, easily survives any kind of psychic abuse by the Emperor without any injuries to show for it, and in terms of tactical acumen has outsmarted both the Emperor and Tzeentch himself, even if it was in a children's card game.
    • The Custodes themselves. As Fyodor finds out the hard way, though their ways might be silly and more than slightly homoerotic, they're still very much the elite among elites of the Imperium's fighting forces.
    • Cegorach. He looks like a deranged clown and speaks in Joker font, but he is a Physical God and quick to educate the ignorant on Why Not To Annoy Deities 101. He has utterly terrified the above Custodes just by cracking bad jokes about strippers at them, leaving them traumatized even when he was going to let them pass anyways, and effortlessly evicted an entire Chaos Warband from his library after toying with them for a few minutes.
    • Magnus. He might spend most of his time used as a punchline for the Emperor... but it's the Emperor who's taunting the incredibly powerful psyker. Karamazov and the assembled Inquisition army learn this to their detriment when Magnus nonchalantly sends them into the Warp with little more than a gesture.
    • Kaldor Draigo joins these ranks as well. Even after having gone friggin' insane due to warp exposure, to the point he's become a sort of power-armored, bearded screwball, he's every bit as Sue-ish as he always was and even if you're a Demon Primarch who just went One-Winged Angel he'll take you down before you can blink.
  • Generator (Jade Sinclair) of the Whateley Universe. She's cute, she's wacky, she invents crazy stuff, she looks like she's only ten... She stopped a supervillain with the powers of the werewolf by nailing him to a tree with railroad spikes. She destroyed a Syndicate hardsite by killing their minions and making it look like she had turned them into zombies. She once broke a close friend out of a magical trap... by firing an anti-tank weapon at it. She's weaponized her hair barrettes, makeup compact, and at least one of her plushy toys. Her shoulder angels nearly caused open warfare across the Whateley Academy campus.
  • Elliott in Rplegacy's Dark Clouds Gathering fantasy crossover RPG is a good-natured goofball most of the time. God help you if you mess with any kids when he's around to see you doing it, though.
  • Even if he's a complete fool who doesn't know what he's doing, even if he is Affably Evil, Nappa from Dragon Ball Z Abridged is still virtually unstoppable to the most powerful human.
    • In the #CellGames video series, Kenshiro proves to be this. After defeating or forcing to retreat Yusuke Urameshi, Yami Yugi, Ryu and Ken and Sonic and Knuckles, Kenshiro walks us and... wants to know if Cell has "bug meat". All the while Cell mocks him, calling him a hobo and, once he performs the Hokuto Hyakuretsu Ken, mocks the attack as "tickling". Until Kenshiro tells him "You Are Already Dead" and causes Cell to explode. Unlike the mooks Kenshiro normally fights, Cell regenerates from this, but it doesn't do him any good— he explodes again less than a minute later, and Kenshiro didn't even have to touch him.
    • Cell himself counts in the main series. The best way to describe him is being a Laughably Evil Knight of Cerebus where both components are played in equal measure. He can genuinely be a source of Nightmare Fuel, but he's always making jokes and acting like a snarky, immature Genki Guy. While he can be entertaining and make you laugh, his scenes still mirror canon and are treated with the same gravity. In fact, the fact that Cell treats everything so flippantly only solidifies how cruel he is. The best display of this is this exchange while he is fighting Trunks:
      Perfect Cell: I'm impressed! Behind all that angst and ridiculous hair, there's a real fighter!
      Trunks: And behind that insufferable smarm there's a dead man!
      Perfect Cell: Trunks... you couldn't fathom the amount of dead men behind me.
    • On the subject of DBZA, Goku himself is even more childish and naive than his canon counterpart and sometimes forgets he even has a son. The two things that primarily tend to be on his mind are food and fights, which is very much Played for Laughs. That said, he's still easily the strongest fighter on the hero's side for much of the series, taking a far shorter time to defeat Nappa compared to canon and outright getting bored with 100% Frieza, and he's far from stupid when it comes to strategizing, with the crown jewel being his (albeit slightly flawed) Batman Gambit against Cell.
  • There have been many occasions on Death Battle that deliberately pitted a funny and light-hearted character against a Darker and Edgier counterpart, and on nearly every one of those occasions, the silly character has won. The crowner has to be Rainbow Dash giving a Curb-Stomp Battle to Starscream.
  • In Critical Role, Scanlan Shorthalt has all the appearances and mannerisms of a Quirky Bard, and Sam Riegel has stated in interviews that he explicitly tried to make the dumbest character possible. However, Scanlan has had several badass moments throughout the series (thanks to 5th Edition Dungeons & Dragons Bards being incredibly powerful and versatile spellcasters,) including taking on an entire manor filled with armed guards by himself in Episode 31, severing Percy's connection to Orthax in Episode 35, paralyzing a Goliath warchief that was tossing Grog around like a ragdoll only a minute ago in Episode 52, slaying a Pit Fiend and stopping the Efreeti guards of the City of Brass from arresting Vox Machina in Episode 76, and holding his own in a Wizard Duel against freaking Vecna in Episode 114.
  • DSBT InsaniT: Taylor is a weird goofball that runs an electronics store. He's kind of annoying and unhelpful, but he'll shift into hyper-competent berserker mode if you insult his store.
  • In Red vs. Blue, the entire Blood Gulch Crew. They're complete morons who spend more time squabbling amongst themselves than they do fighting the enemy... but they didn't kill all their opponents by chance. A partial list:
    • Sarge and Donut are able to capture and kill (respectively) Agent Texas, The Ace of the Freelancers.
    • Tucker finds a laser sword that makes him The Chosen One of an alien prophecy, and he quickly learns how to use it. It also gives him Ripple Effect-Proof Memory, which allows him to trick and defeat Agent Wyoming.
    • Caboose completely shreds the Battle Creek Reds and Blues when he gets angry.
    • The Reds manage to completely humiliate both Washington and the Meta working together.
    • By the end of the Recollection saga, they take on the Meta and manage to actually kill him, which none of Project Freelancer's elite agents have done.
    • In the Chorus Trilogy, they're seen as incredible heroes by the Chorusian armies, but still get absolutely steamrollered by Felix (who himself is goofy enough to qualify for this trope). Felix himself doesn't take them all too seriously once he gets to know them, until they trick him into an Engineered Public Confession about how he and Locus had been Playing Both Sides in order to kill off everyone on Chorus, followed up by rallying both armies, arming them with alien weaponry, and handing him a Humiliation Conga.
    • They curbstomp the other Simulation Troopers on their way to fight the Blues and Reds.
  • Eian, Link and Zelda's coachman from The Light of Courage. Most of his role is just to make jokes about the current situation, but when he finds himself face-to-face with Ganon, he somehow manages to steal the Triforce of Power.
  • Outside Xbox: In their Dungeons & Dragons campaign, the Oxventurers' Guild as a whole are fairly goofy and seemingly not much of a threat. Dob, the half-orc bard, is a friendly guy who keeps throwing money into lakes for no particularly coherent reason; Merilwen, while often the Only Sane Man, is also largely indifferent to anything outside of animals; Corazon the pirate is egotistical, irresponsible and greedy; Egbert the Careless, while well-intentioned, is also largely devoid of forward planning skills and prone to acting on pure chaotic energy; and Prudence, the warlock, is a wackily overplayed Card-Carrying Villain. This group of five amiable wackos, over the course of wandering around the kingdom of Geth, have also shredded basically every significant threat the DM has thrown at them, from powerful fiends to horrific aberrations to, on one memorable occasion, throwing an entire tower of enemies into chaos with skilful manipulations and the careful use of magic. Presumably their eccentricities give them a particular knack for coming up with unexpected solutions.

    Real Life 
  • The teddy-bear cholla, a cactus native to the deserts of the American southwest, from a distance looks as cute and fuzzy as the name implies. Those fuzzy-looking spines, however, frickin' mean business! Entire segments of the plant will break away and cling to their victim like a gigantic, vampiric cockleburr. This is also simultaneously the teddy-bear cholla's main defense against herbivores and their primary form of reproduction (in that the segments sprout as soon as they're removed from their victim). They tend to grow in patches, making large swaths of the Sonoran Desert impassable. The cactus is so devious that locals like to repeat an old wives' tale that claims plants are able to reach out and stick passers-by, which, by the way, inspires its other common name of "jumping cholla."
  • The platypus is an odd animal, even among the grab-bag of evolutionary oddities that make up the ecology of Australia. Possessing a duck's bill, a beaver tail, and otter-like feet, it further distinguishes itself by being one of only five species of mammals to lay eggs. Beware the male ones, though, as they produce a venom that causes excruciating, intractable pain in humans that lasts for weeks, and is noted for not responding to analgesics like morphine. This venom is not actually fatal - but a dose of morphine that is will not make a dent in the pain. Physically severing the nerve transmitting the pain signal is actually considered valid medical treatment to platypus venom. From Cracked:
  • Guess which animal in Africa has killed the most people? Black mamba? Lion? Leopard? Hyena? Human-baby-eating-monkeys? No, my friend. It is the hippo. Yep. The big fatty with cute little ears. Word of advice: When in Africa, don't ever go near where a hippo lives, because they are territorial and if they see you, they will chase you and you better have a runaway truck nearby, because they are faster than they look. Why should you be so worried about escaping an angry hippo? Why is the death rate so high? Hippos aren't afraid to bite. And the lesson is? Don't antagonize an animal that's eager to bite you with teeth as big as bowling pins! There's a reason why Steve Irwin was afraid of them. Sometimes hippos don't bite. They simply want to go back into the water, and don't give two fucks about what or who is on the way. Getting hit by one is just like getting hit by a truck.
  • Caterpillars are a perennial source of visual amusement for humans. After all, the typical caterpillar is soft, fuzzy and too interested in eating to notice the big humans poking and gawking at it. However, there are some caterpillars that, despite looking rather peculiar or ridiculous, are actually dangerous. One offender is the caterpillar of the puss moth, which is a big, fat, green caterpillar. If threatened, it rears up to show off its big, pink head, which it sinks into its neck, so that one sees a face with what appears to be a pair of lips underneath its mouth. Any predator (animal or human) that does not get the hint to leave it alone from this threat display will then find out that the "lips" serve as the opening to a gland that squirts out a jet of caustic formic acid. The caterpillar of the flannel moth is far worse, appearing as a disheveled and strangely adorable ball of fluff. Do not touch any caterpillar with the nickname "asp!" The fluff hides numerous venomous spines that cause excruciating pain, comparable in agony to snakebite, and, with the added bonus of causing bleeding, blistering rash at the site of contact.
  • Rhubarb looks a lot like celery with a red or pink stalk (it can have a green stalk too, so beware). The leafstalks of both plants are edible, as are Celery leaves. Rhubarb leaves, however, have so much oxalic acid concentrated into the tissue so as to be deadly. While oxalic acid is what gives rhubarb its deliciously tart flavor, in large quantities, it can cause immense harm, in that, at toxic doses, crystals of oxalic acid will form in the blood, and when the blood is filtered through the glomeri of the kidneys, these crystals will lacerate the tissues of the kidney, so that the poisoned person will bleed to death by urinating blood.
  • Mosquitos. They're annoying little pests with big doofy eyes and who buzz around dopily, with hobbies that include leaving behind an itchy bite, buzzing in your ear, and ruining outdoor events, and they go out in one swat. Wouldn't it be scary if they were responsible for more human deaths per year, or total across history, than any other organism on the planet and our only means of warding them off is avoiding them or hiding from them with repellent and hoping they don't happen to bump into us? Yeah, that's actually the case.
  • Domesticated pigs. Fat, often pink creatures with curly tails that look too tubby for their little legs, stuff themselves on near everything and look ridiculous when they're running around. As any farmer will tell you, though, pigs are incredibly dangerous when riled, and have been known to kill and eat their caretakers if they're provoked into it (or if the caretaker is just knocked unconscious into their pen). Suddenly, the scene of 12 year old Dorothy falling into the Pig Pen isn't that overdramatic anymore, huh?
  • Chimpanzees are known for being human-like, to the point where they are dressed in human outfits. Also, they can make a funny, huge, toothy grin they flash for the cameras, it makes them look devilish. The bad thing is, it's not a grin, but a mouthful of very large teeth being bared. Despite their small size, they're strong enough to literally tear a human limb-from-limb with their bare hands.
  • The Woolly Mammoth is an actual scary animal, being large and with massive tusks that could definitely hurt someone on the wrong end of them. They went extinct in large part because very silly looking hairless apes without any claws, sharp teeth, and half their size decided that the mammoth was delicious and nutritious. Turns out said apes are the most intelligent animal by miles as well as the one with the best stamina within the animal kingdom in addition to a communication ability that can vocalize very large amount of complex information. This combination meant that no matter how far the prey ran, these apes could go further, were a Scarily Competent Tracker and could always find you, and could call for help. These Silly Apes are now the dominant species on the planet, have no natural predators, and other apex predators would rather avoid than outright hunt them, only eating them if they are very, very, desperate. And some predators find that these apes do not taste good at all. This particular ape is, in fact, so dangerous, it has been known to wipe out entire species without even trying—simply as a byproduct of their everyday activities.
  • Cockatoos are probably one of the cutest, funniest birds to exist under the sun. They imitate noises. LOTS of noises. They get loud when they don't like something, or just need to get it out of their system. And this is all if they're raised correctly. If abused or neglected, they're very bitter, they bite often, and when they feel threatened, they puff up to look like bigger, more monstrous animals.
  • Poultry birds such as chickens, turkeys, geese, and ducks all share the common trait of waddling around, making silly noises, and being food. They also all share the common trait of being much more aggressive (as well as smarter) than they're given credit for, all having the means of inflicting painful and even serious injuries on humans, living in flocks, and will eagerly and seriously ruin your day if you run afoul of them.
  • Panda bears: Cute, fuzzy, little pandas love to roll around, play with each other and their humans, and nibble on bamboo. But we have the Bears Are Bad News trope for a reason-do not mess with them.
  • Genki Sudo is known for his flashy entrances, bizarre in-ring movements and the overall appearance of not taking his match seriously. He has a 15-4 win-loss record thanks to his amazing grappling skills.
  • Any ratite bird would count for the fact of being flightless and perceived as quite comical through human eyes as they run or walk on their two legs and sometimes waddle. Noted, however, the legs of these sorts of birds are not only strong enough to use for running at alarming speeds but are also enough to be weaponized, in addition to sharp claws at the toes of their feet quite lethal at that. They can fatally kick, even gash a full-grown predator (or human) with just a single strike. Ostriches and the Australian Cassowary are well-known culprits of this type.


 
Feedback

Video Example(s):

Top

Knock Out vs Arcee and Bumblebee, Round 2

Despite being the comic relief for the 'Cons, Knock Out can be a formidable opponent when he gets serious, as Arcee and Bumblebee figure out.

How well does it match the trope?

4 (5 votes)

Example of:

Main / BewareTheSillyOnes

Media sources:

Main / BewareTheSillyOnes

Report