Fleshing out characters, by connecting them to objects.
Sub-index of Characterization Tropes.
Signature Tropes have a lot of overlap, in being something that's tied to a character, so automatically it characterizes them... But, some examples aren't In-Universe physical objects, so they don't count here.
- #1 Dime: A mundane item with pricelessly sentimental value to a certain character.
- Ace Custom
- Addiction Displacement: Character uses a safer addiction in place of a destructive one.
- Beetle Maniac: Character who has a fascination with bugs, mainly beetles.
- Caged Bird Metaphor: Character is associated with a caged bird.
- Calling Card
- Coin Walk Flexing: A character with a history of practicing sleight of hand or being a gambler may walk a coin across their fingers.
- Companion Cube
- Descent into Addiction: A character's story arc involves them becoming dependent on a substance.
- Family Portrait of Characterization
- Fatal Family Photo
- Friendship Trinket
- Glasses Curiosity: When a character wants to try on the glasses of others.
- I Call Him "Mister Happy"
- I Call It "Vera"
- Iconic Outfit
- It Was a Gift
- Kitsch Collection: A large collection of objects well maintained by the collector.
- Literally Prized Possession: A lot can be said about a character depending on how they view a possession they won as a prize.
- Living Emotional Crutch: When they're not another character / person.
- The Magazine Rule: A character subscribes to a weirdly specific fandom magazine that represents who they are.
- Magic Feather
- Memento MacGuffin
- Oral Fixation: A character who feels the need to suck or chew on something such as a toothpick or a cigarette.
- Orphan's Plot Trinket
- Personal Arcade: A character has commercial pinball and/or video game machines for his own amusement.
- Poster-Gallery Bedroom: A character's personality can be seen from the way they decorate their room.
- Precious Photo
- Security Blanket
- Single Substance Manipulation
- Signature Device
- Signature Headgear
- Signature Instrument
- Trademark Favorite Food
- Tragic Keepsake
- Vanity License Plate: A character puts a unique license plate on their vehicle to make it look cooler.
- Weapon of Choice
- Weapons of Their Trade: A character's choice of Improvised Weapon is a reflection on their job.
- X2: X-Men United: John, aka "Pyro", carries a lighter with him wherever he goes. John is a Jerkass, rebellious teenager itching to use his fire abilities and show the world what he's really made of. As such, his unique lighter is adorned with a shark motif, demonstrating the predator within that John wants to unleash. However, at the same time, the lighter is also something of a crutch for John; unlike his main rival, Bobby (aka "Iceman"), Pyro cannot create flames from thin air. Thus, he is dependent on the lighter and is seen carrying it with him wherever he goes. This characterization is best symbolized in John's brief conversation with Magneto; after heckling Magneto a bit, the villain uses his power to take the lighter from John to his shock (effectively making John powerless despite his arrogance), and when John meekly admits that he cannot create flames without it, Magneto refers to him only as "Pyro" and tells him "you are a god among insects" and gently hands Pyro back his lighter. This display of empowerment firmly sways Pyro to Magneto's side at the end of the film.