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City Mouse

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Demanding, often female, often found as a Fish out of Water on a farm somewhere with disturbingly large and invasive livestock; she may be quite literally out of water where there is no indoor plumbing. May have come to the country overconfidently assuming that The Simple Life Is Simple. If female, expect her to frequently complain about breaking her nails. Unlike the Country Mouse (her foil counterpart), usually is the recipient of, rather than the deliverer of, An Aesop.

Frequently overlaps with Naïve Newcomer and Fallen Princess. Particularly if a camping trip is in effect, the Bratty Teenage Daughter usually acts this way (with or without the Fancy Camping stuff).

A Sub-Trope of Rich in Dollars, Poor in Sense.

This term and Country Mouse derive from Aesop's Fables, making it Older Than Feudalism.



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     Anime And Manga 
  • Keiichi Maebara from Higurashi: When They Cry. Subversion as he's nicer than many and adapts relatively quickly.
  • Pauley Cracker from Kimba the White Lion is revealed to be this. He used to be the pet of a wealthy hotel owner who ran away to rescue his girlfriend along with other birds from a pet store. He and the other birds eventually made it into the jungle where Caesar allowed him to stay for demostrating such courage for a house pet.
  • Chitose Fujinomiya from the anime Goldfish Warning!
  • Hachiken Yugo from Silver Spoon is a very intelligent student from Sapporo who makes it into an agriculture high school because he's Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life. Hilarity Ensues. Unexpectedly for the trope, Hachiken is undemanding and incredibly lenient. He's refereed to as "The One Who Won't Refuse You" at least once, due to his inability to turn down a request to help someone out.

  • The Aviator: At one point in the film, Howard Hughes and Katharine Hepburn address each other as “City Mouse” and “Country Mouse” – a detail lifted from telegrams exchanged between the two that were auctioned off after Hepburn’s death. The difference in their backgrounds is explored in another scene in which Hughes travels to meet Hepburn's family.
  • City Slickers has an entire cast of them.
  • Chevy Chase and Madolyn Smith, in Funny Farm.
  • Willie Scott in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.
  • Reese Witherspoon's character in Sweet Home Alabama, although she returns to her country roots and gets back with her hick ex.
  • Renée Zellweger plays one of these in New in Town.
  • Vinny and Lisa, in My Cousin Vinny, are a more blue-collar version of this trope.
  • The Blandingses, of Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House, are sort of a variation of this.
  • The title characters, particularly Meryl, in Meet The Morgans
  • Both the original and the remade versions of The Parent Trap have this as an aspect of the catty, mean, image-obsessed fiancée of the girls' father, although it's played up a bit more in the remake.
  • In Pontypool, the main character is a disgraced, big-city shock-jock who has recently been forced to take a job at a rural town radio station.
  • Eric, in My Effortless Brilliance, has no idea how to live out in the country. Unlike most examples, he's willing to admit that and simply tries to keep out of the way most of the time.

  • A farmer looked out his window and saw that one of his cows was near the road and having difficulty giving birth, so he went out and took a hold of the calf's legs and started tugging. Before long a luxury car stopped and a man got out asking if he could help. The Farmer said it would be appreciated. The man took off his Rolex and rolled up his sleeves, and after both men did some tugging the calf came out just fine and healthy. The farmer thanked the stranger, who said "I just have one question... how fast was the little cow going when it hit the big cow?"
  • A city slicker moves to the countryside and decides to raise chickens, buying chicks off a nearby farmer. A week later, he comes back and buys more chicks, and again a week later. Finally, he asks the farmer: "I don't get it, not one of these birds has lasted the week. Do you think maybe I'm planting them too close together?"

  • Beatrix Potter retold Aesop's fable as The Tale of Johnny Town-Mouse. A country mouse is accidentally brought to the city, finds it too dangerous, and returns home; a city mouse visits him there, is frightened by the weather and prospect of a cow stepping on him, and returns home. Potter draws the Aesop that people like different things (and ignore different disadvantages).
  • The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare. Kit, the protagonist, is a formerly-rich city mouse from Barbados who comes to live with her aunt and uncle in the small Puritan town where they live. She complains, a lot.
  • Jamie from The Homeward Bounders is this, at least in the beginning: a streetwise city kid who has to learn how to interact with a culture of nomadic herders who laugh at him when he uses the wrong word for "cow".
  • Cecil Linton from Mary Grant Bruce's Billabong series is the snobby city cousin.
  • Ponder Stibbons in Lords and Ladies, whose reaction to Lancre is "I bet there's not a single delicatessen anywhere." At the end, it's suggested he might be staying there, but his next appearance shows him back in Ankh-Morpork.
  • Flora Poste in Cold Comfort Farm.
  • Betty MacDonald's semi-autobiographical memoir The Egg and I casts her as one of these. The book was later adapted into a film with Claudette Colbert.
  • Fleur Delacour plays this role in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, much to the massive chagrin of Mrs. Weasley and Ginny.
  • Mark Twain's novel The Prince and the Pauper had the titular characters switch places. They thought it would be great fun, but turns out neither life is as carefree and pleasant as they hoped.
  • Elizabeth (later called Betsy) in Dorothy Canfield's children's novel Understood Betsy.
  • Theresa (later called Terry) in Hobby Horse Hill by Lavinia R. Davis.
  • Klara in Heidi. Somewhat subverted in that she loves the Alps and never complains about her visit to the country.
  • In Warrior Cats, pretty much every kittypet (cat owned by humans). Most of them seem surprised that wild cats have to hunt for their food, and can't imagine doing it themselves (in fact, some of them find the idea of hunting to be messy and disgusting) or sleeping anywhere but a warm bed.
  • in Insupu, all the kids are naturally disoriented and a little lost in their deserted island, but they all get used to it pretty quickly despite all of them being city kids. All of them, with the exception of Spoiled Sweet nine years old countess Grace, who is scared of the goat, let alone the wild animals in the island.
  • In Drömmar av glas by Solveig Olsson-Hultgren, Rebecka has grown up in the city of Stockholm, but is forced to live with her grandparents in rural Småland. Of course, she needs a while to adapt to her new surroundings. Ironically enough, her mother Elin had been a Country Mouse in Stockholm.
  • Blood Red: The novel's prologue discusses how Rosamund's parents moved to rural Germany for the sake of their Earth Master-potential daughter. While her father easily adapted to life as a village schoolmaster, her mother always missed city life and couldn't fit in with the rest of the village matrons.

     Live Action TV  
  • Eva Gabor's character Lisa Douglas on Green Acres is the most recognizable example.
    • Although, oddly enough, she seemed to have an easier time dealing with Hooterville's craziness than Oliver did.
    • Titularly ironic considering Eva Gabor also voices a rich mouse in The Rescuers.
  • A minor example would be the gang on It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. One episode shows that Mac and Dennis can't even tolerate living in the suburbs, and until season 6, Charlie had never even left Philadelphia. In said season 6 episode, "The Gang Gets Stranded in the Woods," the gang's car breaks down in the Pine Barrens on their way to Atlantic City and they do not take to it well.
  • Carrie Bradshaw on Sex and the City, when staying in a log cabin in Suffern (although that's Samantha in the trope image).
    • In real life, Suffern is densely populated (over 10,000 residents) and not considered to be in the country, but that didn't stop it from being used as a theme park version of a hick town.
  • Dr. Joel Fleischman on Northern Exposure.
  • Major Charles Emerson Winchester on M*A*S*H in his earlier episodes.
  • Mimi in Jericho.
  • Lacey in Corner Gas. She's originally from Toronto, but moved to small town Dog River to take over her aunt's restaurant.
  • Paris Hilton and Nichole Richie were Real Life examples of this on their Reality Show The Simple Life.
  • Darcy in Darcy's Wild Life.
  • C.C. Babcock on The Nanny, particularly in "Schlepped Away", as she, along with Fran and the Sheffield family, is stuck in the Fine family's apartment in Queens during a snowstorm. To emphasize, going to Queens isn't even leaving the city! It's just a less densely populated borough.
  • Mr. Ernst and his son Buddy in Hey Dude!.
  • Ian Lyons in How Do You Want Me is an oddly sympathetic example, having moved to his wife's tiny hometown of Snowle shortly after they eloped. It doesn't really help that his in-laws all dislike him.

  • Bryan Ferry portrays himself as such in "Editions of You", from For Your Pleasure.
    Sometimes you find a yearning for the quiet life
    The country air and all of its joys
    But badgers couldnt compensate at twice the price
    For just another night with the boys, oh yeah!

  • Aesop recounted the story of a city mouse visiting a country mouse and scorning his life as simple, but when the country mouse went to the city, he found the danger of cat and concluded that safety and simplicity in the country were best.

  • Ruth Winters in the musical Plain and Fancy. (The show also has a song titled "City Mouse, Country Mouse.")

    Video Games 
  • In the Hentai RPG Maker game That Life ~The Rural Survival RPG~, Naoko Enjoji, raised in a home of wealth and luxury, is uprooted by a condition for her schooling: she has to live like (and with) Charlotte (her lowly maid) in the countryside to learn humility and survival.
  • In The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, this is Keira Metz in a nutshell. Keira is a Girly Girl sorceress forced away from her position at court by witch-hunters who, when you meet her, has become the village witch in a small farming community. You can find her efforts to reconnect with her former life in her cottage, like a wide variety of experimental make-up components made from local plants and a complaint about the cost of getting her favorite foods delivered to the middle of nowhere. In the end, poor Keira can't take country life, and will, if you don't intervene, take certain death at the hands of Radovid's witch-hunters over another night with the bed-bugs.


     Western Animation 

    Real Life 
  • This was what the term "dude" referred to during the 1880s in the Old West (hence, a "dude ranch" is a ranch for "dudes", i.e. tourists).
  • Democratic Kampuchea operated on the assumption that educated urbanites in thrall of foreign (and chiefly Western) interests exploited the rural commoners that were the country's lifeblood, an attitude with disastrous consequences.
  • In contemporary U.S. politics, Democrats are stereotyped as effete urban people who have no concept of the "real America" in rural areas.