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Commander Contrarian

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"Your proposition may be good,
But let's have one thing understood —
Whatever it is, I'm against it!
And even when you've changed it or condensed it,
I'm against it!"

Commander Contrarian doesn't just carry the Conflict Ball; they hold the world record for keeping it aloft. Their main purpose in the plot is to naysay and find flaws in the hero's plans in order to generate obstacles. They might be legitimate concerns but are usually spurious. This can be either because Commander Contrarian is jealous of the hero's position (like a good-aligned Starscream), The Cynic, or just a plain ol' Jerkass.

Their objections can be born of stupidity, pragmatism, or politics, but will almost always be just plain wrong. Even if they aren't, they'll only rarely propose a viable alternate plan of action, and even if they do, it's almost unheard of for the hero to use it and have it work. If they’re persuasive, they'll get the group to split up and go separate ways. Odds are high their group will be monster chow.

When especially clichéd, they will oppose anything a hero proposes. They’ll wail and moan over leaving the refugees or saving the refugees, be adamant about a suicidal charge or be entirely against any military action. As a character type, they’re practically Schrodinger's Gun Lobbyist; no matter what the hero advocates, they’re against it. Likewise, their morality will always be 180 degrees opposite the leader.

They are usually the complainer when The Complainer Is Always Wrong. They might end up as a Doomed Contrarian. Sometimes, however, they’re doing this on purpose. This is called a "Devil's Advocate"; the idea is that, even though they may actually agree with the plan, they want to make sure out of principle that the leader doesn't do anything they can't clearly defend against criticism, and might have missed something.

Compare Rebellious Rebel and Sarcastic Devotee. Contrast with Yes-Man. See also Speaking Up for Another.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Justified in Blue Comet SPT Layzner: David objects repeatedly to Eiji less because he hates him and more because Eiji is a Martial Pacifist who wants to avert bloodshed at all costs while David is more pragmatic and wants the group they're a part of to survive.
  • Commander Richard Mardukas from Full Metal Panic! acts like this towards Captain Teletha Testarossa during the Hong Kong arc, questioning her decision to deploy the ARX-7 Arbalest. In all fairness, Mardukas had a point: Arbalest's pilot hadn't been in the best of mental places throughout the story, though once Tessa makes her decision, Mardukas follows orders. And then ironically, in the "Dancing Very Merry Christmas" light novel, Mardukas gets it from a junior officer, in response to Mardukas' unconventional tactics.
  • Samson from Kimba the White Lion acts like this towards Kimba and his father when it comes to their politics.
  • Sailor Moon:
    • Rei began the first season of the first anime with shades of one; she disliked the idea someone the likes of Usagi would take command and made Ami take her side, and that's not even getting into the potshots she regularly took at the heroine and the Love Triangle with Mamoru. Fortunately, from the second season onwards, she gained better respect for her and considered a close friend, though not above poking fun or arguing with her.
    • Haruka and Michiru in the '90s anime tend to also staunchly disagree with Usagi's optimistic point of view. That being said, they try to rely more on logic than outright arguing.
  • Played for Laughs in an anime-original part in S2E02 of My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!, when Sophia modifies a school play to add a romantic part for Catarina's wicked-stepsister character. Everyone immediately volunteers themselves to play the part, but all of them were already conveniently had other roles to fulfill for the production, and Sophia swiftly and cheerfully shoots down each one. She then offers the part to her brother Nicol, who (conveniently) happens to be the only person without a role (as he was no longer a student).
  • Joe in Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, especially regarding the Bird Missiles. A rare example of a commander being this is Ken, who argues with Dr. Nambu from time to time and is actually a bit of a hothead. In Battle of the Planets it's even worse, with Mark being much more wholesome and boyscout-like than Ken and Joe's tragic backstory being Bowdlerised out of Jason's character so Jason simply comes off as a hotheaded jerk whose role in battles is to argue with Mark.

    Comic Books 
  • Hawkeye (Clint Barton) was king of this as related to Avengers team leader Captain America. This was elegantly lampshaded by Wonder Man in 2005's "Avengers Finale", the epilogue to the "Avengers Disassembled" saga. The remaining Avengers are having a get-together, reminiscing about old times and departed friends, including the recently killed Hawkeye. As told by Wonder Man:
    Wonder Man: Clint didn't just disagree with Cap; he'd CRAZY disagree. Cap could just say something as simple as "I like turkey", and Clint would say "turkey sucks, and you suck and WHO MADE YOU BOSS, ANYWAY?!?"
  • Salvation Run: Doctor Sivanna acts like this to Lex Luthor throughout it. Every time Lex comes up with a plan, Sivanna's quick to say it will fail and that they're all going to die. Nevertheless, he does pitch in with his scientific expertise when Lex asks him to.
  • In any X-Men adaptation where Cyclops is in charge, Wolverine will always be there to snark at, insult, or generally disagree with him.

    Fan Works 
  • Abraxas (Hrodvitnon):
    • Dr. Mark Russell has shades of this. He at first reacts with Arbitrary Skepticism when told that half of Monster X is Vivienne Graham brought Back from the Dead as an Artificial Hybrid. Later, he's notably unconvinced that San has made a Heel–Face Turn, and it's when Madison finds a possible lead on where the Many have taken Monster X to that he, of all people, decides they shouldn't be hasty for once.
    • Rodan among the Titans allied with Godzilla. Besides initially resenting being a mentor to Monster X, his personality seems more inclined to react than to act in advance; unlike Monster X, Mothra, and Godzilla.
  • Whenever a moral principle is enforced in Lost Boy, expect Snotlout, Spitelout, and Mildew to show up and contradict it every time.

    Films — Animated 
  • Cera of The Land Before Time series falls into this trope quite easily. Whether she's just making a snide remark about Littlefoot's latest plan, or getting into an all-out fight with him, if there's a plan to be made, there's a flaw for her to point out.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Die Hard:
    • In the first Die Hard movie McClane handles being a cop in the wrong place and time, but despite being their only real hope, Deputy Chief Robinson spends his time blaming McClane like an incompetent cop. Even with Al defending McClane, Robinson finally pushes too far when McClane saves some cops with an explosion, only for Robinson to take the radio and complain about him causing falling glass:
      McClane: Oh, you're in charge? Well, I got some bad news for you, Dwayne. From up here it doesn't look like you're in charge of jack shit.
      Robinson: You listen to me, you little asshole, I'm—
      McClane: Asshole? I'm not the one who just got butt-fucked on national TV, Dwayne. Now, you listen to me, jerk-off, if you're not a part of the solution, you're a part of the problem. Quit being a part of the fucking problem and put the other guy back on!
    • Die Hard 2: Die Harder also has this with Captain Lorenzo, who spends his time being assholes and inhibiting him every step of the way. At least until McClane identifies the soldiers are Dragon Their Feet, at which point Captain Lorenzo realizes McClane knows what he's doing.
  • Albert Nimzicki, the Secretary of Defense in Independence Day, fits this trope to a T, being a general prick to everyone in the movie until President Whitmore fires him after he uses the president's dead wife's name to try to get his way.
  • MonsterVerse:
    • Downplayed and sometimes inverted by Mark Russell in Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019). Mark vehemently disagrees with Monarch's approach to handling the Titans (specifically the "not killing them all ASAP" part) due to his personal grudge and cynicism, in contrast to Monarch's sound minds and xenophilia; and Mark takes more than one opportunity to make his opinion clear to the Monarch top brass's faces. But when he's thinking somewhat more clearly, it's Mark who often takes the lead in working out why the Titans are behaving the ways they are and what the most productive course of action would be.
    • Played Straight in Godzilla vs. Kong, however. One of Mark's select scenes in the finished movie consists of him irrationally dismissing Madison's logical advice about the reasons for Godzilla's rampage completely out of hand and Easily Condemning Godzilla, based on no higher cognitive function than his unprofessionally-rampant emotions. The movie's novelization furthermore reveals that Mark is skeptical about King Ghidorah being an alien despite DNA analysis lending it even further credibility, and Mark also pre-judges the Hollow Earth expedition to be nothing but a useless boondoggle off the bat.
  • A New Hope:
    • Vader actually has the good kind in Daine Jir. He apparently often called Vader's judgment into question while on missions, but at the same time he was thought to be a model Imperial officer, as he could follow orders explicitly when he saw the sense in them, and he usually accepted Vader's explanation after asking him about his planned course of action.
    • Played straight with Admiral Ozzel from The Empire Strikes Back, who questions Vader's command in going to Hoth thinking it may be just a smuggler base. He doesn't live long to make another contradiction when he screws up their sneak attack on the planet.
  • Utterly, utterly subverted in Night of the Living Dead (1968) - the local exemplar of this trope sticks to his guns and is portrayed as an archetypal contrarian. In the end, however, he is convinced to follow the protagonist's plan - and ends up dead when the plan turns out to be tragically flawed. The real kicker then comes when the protagonist, by following Contrarian's original plan, ends up the only survivor until he's shot by Sergeant Zombie-Hunter at the end.
  • David in Shaun of the Dead contradicts every single thing Shaun does, even before the zombie apocalypse. He is a Deconstructed Character Archetype of this type of character, though: his attitude mainly comes from the fact that Shaun was dating his crush Liz and he can't accept it. Shaun even says that David's occupation is "twat" as if that's a real profession. And on the occasions he raises a decent point (like questioning why they should go to the Winchester pub when they could have stayed at the safer flat), someone else asks why he doesn't bother to take charge of the group himself if he thinks he can be a better leader only for him to try and deflect back on Shaun.
  • Solarbabies: Metron spends a lot of his time complaining about his friends' decisions. He gets better after a while.

  • Animorphs:
    • Marco is a rare example of this with good intentions. While he hates going on missions, he wants to make sure that whatever plan Jake has come up with is as close to perfect as it can be. He's also a self-aware drag-along and Sarcastic Devotee whose catchphrase is "This is insane."
    • Cassie as well; she tends to test the morality of a given plan, where he looks at the practicality.
  • Blackout: Eileen has problems while minding Theodore, a small child who always seems to want to do the opposite of whatever Eileen is trying to get him to do. When she tries to hustle him out of a pantomime early, he nearly throws a tantrum that he wants to stay. When she finally relents and leaves him alone for a few minutes, he starts complaining that he wants to leave.
  • Ciaphas Cain: Cain runs into one, a fellow Commissar named Tomas Beije. Beije and Cain went through the same schola together, and Beije obviously never forgave Cain for achieving the kind of memetic popularity he is denied. This translates to his attempting to block Cain at every turn, torching a cultist hideout before it could be investigated, sending passive-aggressive reports on Cain's suspicious behavior, and culminates in trying to arrest Cain for cowardice and desertion as Cain is trying to stop a daemon from being summoned away from the front lines. In the end, the squad he brought along gets to see firsthand exactly what Cain is like in combat and end up founding a minor cult worshipping him as the Emperor's will made manifest.
  • To some extent, the Bureau of Sabotage in Frank Herbert's ConSentiency stories, as it is their mission to interfere with the rest of the government to keep it from becoming too irresistible.
  • Quara in books 2-4 of Orson Scott Card's Ender Saga to the point where Jane, who tries to argue with her, finally realizes that Quara is simply incapable of "shutting up to save her own life", as Jane calmly explains that she is capable of unintentionally ending Quara's life during the next FTL jump. Quara then proceeds to threaten Jane (a Physical God). Miro then explains to Jane that Quara pays for her attitude by being lonely. After all, why would anyone try to seek her company, if they're just going to be insulted and frustrated?
  • Harry Potter:
    • Zacharias Smith in Order of the Phoenix.
    • Cormac McLaggen in Half-Blood Prince. He's more "ignore orders and take charge" rather than simply protest orders, but cut from the same cloth.
    • Hermione herself takes this role during Deathly Hallows, though less out malice than because she feels they should stick to the original plan (find the Horcruxes, destroy the Horcruxes, high five after).
  • Honor Harrington commanders take after the Star Trek inversion of this trope: the XO is fully expected to provide their dissenting opinions. Though with a bit more of a nod to military discipline, they do it in private, rather than publicly bracing the captain in front of the crew. Many Commanders Contrarian forget to do this, behaving in ways that would get them in serious trouble with regulations in Real Life.
  • Elinor of In the Keep of Time. When in the past, all she ever wants is to come back to the present, no matter how much Andrew enjoys the exciting adventures, Ian likes playing with the other kids, or the fact they might be leaving Ollie behind. Similarly, when they go to the future, as soon as they figure out they're not in the past and won't be finding the "real" Ollie, Elinor again wants to head home. But as soon as Andrew appeals to her sense of charity via the old blind Vianah needing their help, she changes her mind and agrees to stay. Then, when they go to Kelso and discover they are in a future After the End, Andrew is frightened and immediately wants to go home...only to have Elinor think the place is beautiful and peaceful and want to stay. It'd be annoying, if the irony and slight bit of Laser-Guided Karma to Andrew weren't so delicious.
  • In The Legend of Drizzt, Jarlaxle served this role to Matron Baenre when she was planning a war. In Menzoberranzan, a matron (always a priestess of Lloth, the ruling deity) can have you put to death for disagreeing with her, or contradicting her, or if she feels like it, or if it's Thursday, and Matron Baenre is the most powerful in the city. Apparently, this is inconvenient sometimes, so Matron Baenre had to use someone who knew she wouldn't kill him (Jarlaxle is largely much off the hit list because of how convenient he is and how having him around is better than not having him) to talk her plans out with and having a sounding board.
  • High King Kallor from the Malazan Book of the Fallen rarely agrees with the strategy suggested by the Alliance and is openly disgusted by the plan to leave the conquered Coral to the Malazans. As only the second in command, he tends to be overruled, though.
  • The Mist had a jerky lawyer as neighbor to the protagonist. After some humanizing exposition at the beginning, he sticks to his skepticism and leads a group of like-minded people into the Ominous Fog. They all die.
  • In A Song of Ice and Fire: Jon Snow finds that the Night's Watch is full of these. He reflects that his father had told him it's better to have men who aren't afraid to argue with you, but their constant, predictable objections and lack of alternative suggestions makes them no more useful than if they were. It becomes clear that their answer to "How should the Night's Watch act in response to an imminent zombie invasion coupled with a major continental civil war?" is "Pretend like it isn't happening".
  • Star Wars Legends:
    • The Thrawn Trilogy: Captain Pellaeon is Grand Admiral Thrawn's second, and often plays Sith's Advocate. He always reminds his admiral of certain things that need his attention or might need a second thought, or when he thinks an idea is flawed - and he often does, since Thrawn tends to have strange plans, goes behind the backs of his subordinates, and likes testing him and not telling him what he's doing, instead letting Pellaeon see the results and then asking pointed questions and waiting for Pellaeon to figure it out on his own. There's mention of the two of them once getting into a barely-civilized debate over a tactic that Pellaeon thought would require far too much precision to pull off. Pellaeon's wrong often enough to let Thrawn demonstrate his genius, but he's also known to be right, and Thrawn's enough of a Reasonable Authority Figure to listen every time, even if he doesn't always follow his advice. Pellaeon, in return, comes to trust Thrawn's abilities, so even when he doubts his Grand Admiral he follows his instructions, and he knows when it's better to keep quiet. In other words, Pellaeon is the ideal second-in-command.
    • Ten years later, during the Hand of Thrawn duology, Pellaeon, through hard work and by outliving his superiors, is the Empire's Supreme Commander, and Captain Ardiff is his Commander Contrarian.
      "Trust me, Captain," Pellaeon said, trying hard not to smile as his mind suddenly flashed back ten years. Then, he'd been the earnest captain standing on this same deck, trying in the most diplomatic way possible to make his superior see sense in the middle of a tense combat situation. [...] And yet Thrawn had never reprimanded him for his impertinence and lack of understanding. He had merely continued calmly with his plans, allowing the results to speak for themselves.
      • Complete with a Lampshade Hanging after his counterintuitive plans work:
        Ardiff: I'm, ah, sorry if I sounded—
        Pellaeon: Understood, Captain. Believe it or not, I've been in your place myself.
    • In a more straight example, the New Republic High Council's Commander Contrarian is Councilor Fey'lya, a self-absorbed self-appointed Dark Side's advocate, but for the purposes of empowering himself, not improving the Council's ideas. He's a proponent of Divided We Fall.
    • Another somewhat straight example, also involving Thrawn, can be seen in Timothy Zahn's short story Command Decision. Admiral Thrawn has been exiled to the Unknown Regions along with the crew of a Star Destroyer, and its captain is very displeased with this, and how this alien, when encountering a weird new species, does not follow Imperial protocols at all. Thrawn thanks the captain for his recommendations and goes on with plans that seem to indicate ridiculous weakness. The captain and a general even speculate that Thrawn made some kind of deal and almost mutiny, though when the crunch comes he doesn't. Ultimately Thrawn asks the captain to trust him - and the captain does - and this trust is rewarded when the plan works out really, really well.
      Thrawn: "What it ultimately comes down to is a simple matter of trust. Whether you trust me personally; whether you trust the officers who approved my promotion to the rank of admiral; whether you trust the Emperor and his decision to place me in command here."
    • Star Wars: Fatal Alliance has an openly villainous version in the form of Darth Chratis, who spends most of the actual crunch points in the book ignoring his far more sensible apprentice Eldon Ax's recommendations in favour of doing whatever the hell he wanted. When he turns up dead at the end, not only does the Dark Council not bat an eye, one of them adopts his killer as his new apprentice.
  • Flann O'Brien's The Third Policeman features a man who makes it his rule to answer "No" to everything. Those who catch on can resort to asking if he refuses to divulge such-and-such information, and so on.
  • Warrior Cats: In Graystripe's Vow, Dustpelt comments that Ashfur has always argued about and questioned everything, for no apparent reason.
  • In Alan Yates’ “Coriolanus, The Chariot”, the Council of Playtors includes a “yang” who must always oppose the position of the First Playtor, as the “yin” must always support it. This means that the First Playtor can actually lose only if both of the remaining playtors side with the “Yang”.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Alex Drake plays this role often in Ashes to Ashes (2008). Particularly notable in two first season episodes - in one she tells Gene to trust his hunch even though all the evidence is stacked against it and follows through to find that the guy he suspected did pull the job. (Notable for being just about the only time Alex was right about anything..) The very next episode she is insistent that Gene shouldn't target a guy for a robbery, even though it becomes increasingly obvious he did it. She remains unapologetic at the end of the episode, even though her handling of affairs resulted in an officer getting stabbed and the suspect being brutally beaten.
  • Battlestar Galactica (2003):
    • Colonel Tigh was notorious for undermining other characters' plans with a well-placed "What the frak?".
    • The Quorum of Twelve and the later ship-based Quorum exists only to interfere with whoever is in charge of the government this week.
    • Jurgen Belzen, the XO of Pegasus tried to dissuade Cain from attacking a Cylon staging ground with an undermanned and partially-disabled ship. Incidentally, the show averts the Pretty Little Headshots trope.
  • Played for laughs with Britta Perry on Community, who blended the political radicalism of the Soapbox Sadie with the insufferable pretentiousness of the Hipster, leading her to frequently act contrary more or less just for the sake of being cool and different from what everyone else was doing. As lampshaded at one point during a discussion of marriage:
    Britta: When's our culture gonna outgrow this wedding thing?
    Annie: You're anti-wedding now?
    Jeff: Oh, she's just pro-anti.
    Britta: No to everything you both said!
  • Sergeant Wilson in Dad's Army became known for the catchphrase "Are you sure that's wise, sir?", his favourite way of questioning Captain Mainwaring's judgement.
  • In the later seasons of Dexter when Harry acts as Dexter's Imaginary Friend, he always seems to be against his son's current plans. Sometimes his reasons are good, but other times it just seems arbitrary. One wonders if Dex only "calls him out" to be a Devil's Advocate, a voice for his unconscious doubts.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • Davos considers it his duty to tell Stannis when he is wrong, even while following his orders to the letter.
    • Rickard to Robb and Catelyn, though his points are usually good.
  • House specifically wants someone to disagree with him so as to help him come up with the medical diagnosis. That's why he actually hired the black guy with the criminal record.
  • In the "Obama's Meeting with Republicans" sketch on Key & Peele, President Obama is having a meeting with various Republican officials to make bipartisan agreements for the country, only for the Republicans to disagree with him at every turn. Obama manages to use their contrarian impulses to his advantage by proposing things that Republicans normally favor (small government, no gun-control laws, repealing the Affordable Care Act) only for them to object anyway. This is punctuated by the fact that the Republicans seem to notice this and try in vain to keep themselves from objecting by using the objects around them (tape, wads of paper, staples, etc) to silence themselves.
  • Kristin Baxter in Last Man Standing refuses to listen to her conservative old-fashioned father Mike's advice, even when it is the more reasonable point of view. Her straw liberal, Soapbox Sadie boyfriend Ryan eventually calls her out on it.
    Ryan: You're just disagreeing with your dad just to disagree with him. He says, "up," and you say, "down." You go against him just to drive him crazy even when he's right.
  • Mike Cutter of Law & Order, especially in his first season, seemed to exist solely to argue against whatever calls Jack McCoy made on a case. Tellingly, nearly any time Cutter went against Jack's orders or tried to show Jack "how it should be done", his maneuver would implode on him. Got much better after his first season.
  • And, of course, Monty Python's Flying Circus has The Man Who Contradicts People, as well as the Argument Clinic staffer who keeps crossing the line between argument and contradiction. (No, he doesn't! Yes, he does!)
  • A Running Gag on Most Extreme Elimination Challenge is for Captain Tenneal to stand in front of a bunch of contestants and say "How many of you believe [issue relating to one of the two teams competing that episode]? Show of hands!" And when everyone raises their hand, he replies "Well, you're wrong!"
  • Scrubs, episode "My Advice to You":
    Dr. Kelso: The point is, sometimes what's best for this hospital is what's best for the patients! I know it, you know it, and guess what, Dr. Cox knows it too, although damned if he doesn't disagree with me just because I said it.
    J.D.: Sir, I don't think that's true.
    Dr. Kelso: Perry! It's hotter than hell in here!
    Dr. Cox: Freezing!
    Dr. Kelso: Great coffee, though!
    Dr. Cox: [raising his paper cup] Rat piss!
    Dr. Kelso: Dr Murphy is an incompetent suck-up.
    Dr. Cox: No, Bob. In fact, he's one of the finest young doctors I've ever had the good fortune of working with.
    Dr. Kelso: [to J.D.] Your witness.
  • Stargate SG-1:
    • Senator Kinsey is the poster child for this trope. His purpose in life seems to consist of deliberately choosing the most stupid course of action possible and self-righteously accusing anyone who disagrees with him as having ulterior motives (like his own).
    • General Bauer, who briefly takes over Stargate Command definitely comes off as this. He intentionally sets off a Naquadah Bomb on a Naquadah-rich planet against all objections on how dangerous this is, then seems surprised when it causes the entire planet to be destroyed and send deadly radiation back through the Stargate.

    Multiple Media 
  • MonsterVerse:
    • Reconstruction with Admiral William Stenz. He's more respectful and Consummate Professional than most military leaders in this type of movie, but he does have a tendency to disregard Monarch's advice when it comes to trying to kill the Kaiju with human means. And across both his appearances in Godzilla (2014) and Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), he's persistently skeptical of Monarch's more naturalistic or idealist (their non-strategic) ideas about humanity coexisting with the Titans instead of destroying them. He's presented as being wrong in relation to the MonsterVerse's intended messages about nature being beyond human control and human intervention being detrimental.
    • Preston Packard is the General Ripper type in Kong: Skull Island. He opposes Conrad's plan of trying to reach safe shores and instead takes what's left of his men to kill Kong. Needless to say, doom is upon him.
    • Walter R. Riccio in the graphic novel Skull Island: The Birth of Kong. He puts his fixation on finding the Iwi and learning as much as possible before Aaron's more pragmatic concerns about the group's safety and he isn't quiet about it, and he only grows more antagonistic towards the expedition's leader as he suffers Sanity Slippage and when Aaron calls the expedition off whilst Riccio is more concerned about his "pilgrimage" to see Kong.
    • Senator Williams in King of the Monsters, though she's only in one scene, is a straight case compared to Stenz. She makes a retort to (or just ignores) every argument for trying to coexist with the Titans that Monarch make at the senate hearing.
      Sam Coleman: We believe that these Titans and others like them provide an essential balance to our world.
      [literally 14 seconds later]
      Senator Williams: We still haven't heard one good reason why Monarch shouldn't fall under military jurisdiction, or why these creatures shouldn't be exterminated.
    • Averted by Colonel Diane Foster in King of the Monsters. Whilst she has her reservations about not firing at Godzilla is self-defense when he aggressively approaches Castle Bravo, she listens to Serizawa's advice instead of making the latter an Ignored Expert.
  • Star Trek:
    • All of the first officers usually act like this, especially with regard to the Prime Directive. Picard, at least, believes that it is the job of the first officer: to contradict and question the captain when necessary — which (as he notes in "Encounter At Farpoint") is why he picked Riker (who had such an incident on his record). Starfleet captains are supposed to pick an executive officer that should have a different personality than him (although one he can get along with). This is because Starfleet captains have a fairly loose leash, and as such there should always be a second opinion on hand to check if the choices they make are the right ones.
    • Decker in Star Trek: The Motion Picture existed simply to be contrary to Captain Kirk. Sort of. But the script (specifically McCoy and Kirk's dialogue) suggests that it's rather an Inverted Trope — Kirk is acting contrary to Decker just to reassert control whereas Decker actually shows he has his head screwed on straight by saving the ship on more than one occasion. Decker would be justified in being Commander Contrarian, as it is repeatedly shown that he does know the refit Enterprise far better than Kirk. Countermanding an order from Kirk actually saves the ship from impacting an asteroid at one point. On one occasion, Decker presents an alternative plan. When Kirk starts to retort, Decker says he was just presenting all possible plans, and Kirk checks himself and basically says, "That was appropriate, thank you"; this came after Bones accused him of competing with Decker, and a sign Kirk is re-learning on how to be a proper Captain.
    • In Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Joachim embodies this trope on the antagonist side, often contradicting Khan. Unusually for this trope (probably because it's a villainous example), his contrary opinion is generally a sensible one Khan would have been wise to heed.
    • The Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Arsenal of Freedom" has Geordi La Forge, temporarily in command of the Enterprise, dealing with the very contrary Chief Engineer Logan. During the crisis of the week, Logan repeatedly argues with and tries to pull rank on Geordi; even though Logan is of a higher grade, Geordi points out that Picard himself left him in command, meaning that only Picard can subsequently relieve him.
    • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine has a weird example in Admiral Ross, who outranks Captain Sisko. During the Dominion War, he's usually doubtful of Sisko's plans, but Sisko convinces him to go ahead with them. As reviewer Tim Lynch said, "Ross was basically a chameleon character: he had whatever attitudes needed to be rejected at the time. That's not really a character; it's a set of straw men."
    • DS9 also has Major Kira, whose contrariness mostly stems from a combination of her fiery temper, her impatience with proper procedures, and her overall dislike of The Federation and Starfleet. Even after she grows to accept the Federation's presence on the station, as well as Sisko's status as the Emissary, her temper still makes her a bit of a chaotic factor.
    • Chakotay from Star Trek: Voyager has two reasons to be occasionally contrary. The first is that he used to be a Maquis captain; now the XO, he often has to advocate in favor of both his Maquis crew and his unorthodox Maquis tactics to a captain who's a firm believer in Starfleet procedure. The second reason is that Janeway is a notorious Determinator who tends to get ahead of herself, requiring Chakotay to give her a much-needed reality check ("Scorpion" and "Equinox" in particular stand out).
    • In Star Trek: New Frontier, Commander Shelby realizes she's doing this when she starts acting the way Calhoun would when the more by-the-book Riker is given temporary command of the Excalibur while Calhoun is on a secret mission for Admiral Nechyev. She realizes this even more in Restoration when, after Calhoun is presumed dead, she's given her own command, staffs it with the most exemplary crew (as opposed to Calhoun's off-kilter bunch), and finds herself being contrary to her first officer and missing the old crew. Later, when Calhoun returns and marries her, she staffs her new ship with a few of Excalibur's night-shift officers, including having as her first officer the other woman who slept with Calhoun on a long-time basis.
    • Tellarites have contrariness as their hat, to the point that they consider arguing to be a sport. One Tellarite, Jankom Pog, justifies it by saying that providing an opposing point of view is better than being a Yes-Man.

  • Adam Carolla is known for this shtick, which is what makes his podcast, The Adam Carolla Show, so entertaining. One of the staples of the show is a segment called "What Can't Adam Complain About" with fans sending in (or telling him in person in their live shows) topics that Adam couldn't possibly have an issue with, and he always finds something.
  • Elvenquest: Sam, though eventually Penthesilea bluntly points out he's only doing so to be contrary, and never has the courage to stick to his convictions, ultimately going along with what everyone else does anyway.


    Tabletop Games 
  • The Opposition (aka the Opposers), a thankfully small sect in the Planescape setting. Their goal is to oppose every political, moral, ethical, and philosophical idea except their own, and they believe this will actually help people. Why? Well, they think that an idea can only succeed and its supporters can only become strong if they have to fight to support it. In other words, "opposition makes you strong, so help folks by opposing them". As can be expected, this group doesn't have many friends or allies (nor do they want any - they want people to oppose them too). Player Characters can actually join this group if they want to; the only requirement (other than holding to its controversial philosophy of opposing everything) is actually one that makes sense: you must be True Neutral in alignment. (Being Good, Evil, Lawful, or Chaotic obviously defeats the purpose.)

  • In The Mikado, Lord High Everything Else Pooh-Bah notes that he can not carry out the scheme he, in his capacity as First Lord of the Treasury, just proposed, since "as Leader of the Opposition, it would be my duty to oppose it tooth and nail."

  • Transformers: Ram Horn of the Tripredacus Council from Beast Wars is mentioned to be bluntly stubborn and contrary. His Beast Wars: Uprising incarnation is shown to be easily manipulated by his co-councillors Sea Clamp and Cicadacon due to this, but nobody's sure if he's actually obfuscating or not.

    Video Games 
  • Advance Wars: Days of Ruin's story mode has you escorting a town's worth of people to an automated facility for growing crops. The town's mayor spends every second of his time on screen begging you for help, refusing to do you any favors, and opposing every decision you make.
  • Dragon Age:
    • Dragon Age II: Your party tends to have strong opinions on certain subjects. Most vocally insist that Blood Magic is stupid and evil, causing Merrill to take on this role and point out that all magic is dangerous. Depending on your interaction with her, you can either support her or convince her to give it up. To fill the relationship with her to the brim with hypocrisy, you can have Hawke be a Blood Mage that starts every battle by viciously stabbing him/herself in the gut and choking enemies with their own corrupted vital fluids... while having Merrill never cast any blood spells, ever. Your party members (and you, if you choose to oppose her for no real reason) will still chew out Merrill for her career choice, and make no mention of Hawke's own display of grotesque magic.
    • Dragon Age: Origins:
      • Sten is prone to questioning the Warden's actions if it has little to do with directly taking on the Blight head-on at full force. Eventually, if he's at a low enough approval, he may try to pull an Anti-Mutiny and will fight you for command. However, during arguments, he'll actually respect you more if you stand your ground rather than simply agreeing with him and his arguments are partially a way to see if the Warden has the backbone to actually stand their ground.
      • Morrigan tends toward this unless the Warden decides to wantonly kick every puppy in sight. The player can either indulge these tendencies, buy her off with gifts, or stand up to her, allowing for some Character Development. This stems, of course, from severe mommy issues.
  • Fallout: New Vegas: General Lee Oliver is this to whatever strategic or tactical suggestions the eminently more competent Ranger Chief Hanlon makes. This is because he wants credit for the upcoming victory at the dam, while Hanlon got all the credit for the last one. Oliver's decisions aren't always wrong, but there's some implication that's solely because Hanlon isn't always right, not because Oliver realized why Hanlon wasn't right in those instances.
  • Fallen London has the Jovial Contrarian. He has a habit of killing people by being so incredibly frustrating that they simply keel over dead. On Hallowmas 2018 it was possible to have him make you debate yourself, which your character admits was one of the three most infuriating experiences in their life. In Sunless Sea, he can sometimes turn up at the Rose Market, offering to buy Soothe & Cooper long boxes. He argues every point: the price, the box's state, whether or not he wants it, and so on. Then he proceeds to give you exactly what was promised in the first place and leaves.
  • Fire Emblem: Three Houses has Ferdinand von Aegir towards Edelgard von Hresvelg. This is justified, as since he's the future holder of the title of Duke Aegir and will therefore be one of Edelgard's advisors alongside Hubert, the future Marquis Vestra. Since Hubert outwardly appears to be a yes-man towards Edelgard, Ferdinand plays devil's advocate, ensuring that Edelgard gets both sides of the argument and can therefore make the best decision. This also extends to his rivalry towards her; he wants to push her to always be the best she can be, so he challenges her to contests of skill.
  • Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords:
    • The Jedi Masters, specifically Vrook, seemed to be flanderized into this. And it seemed to be infectious whenever they got together in groups. With the exception of Vrook, the Masters generally seem to agree that they've screwed up by hiding and it's time for a change. Bring all of them together at the end, and suddenly they want to go back into hiding with no explanation as to why they've changed their minds. Oh, and they plan to strip you of the Force because you may be a threat, as opposed to the ones that actually a threat.
    • Kreia is a borderline example. She'll call you out on both good actions and bad actions alike: if you do good, you're often robbing other people of the chance of growing stronger through struggle. But she'll also call you out on any Stupid Evil action because, well, it's stupid. The problem being that those are basically 80% of all options. She wholeheartedly approves of Pragmatic Villainy and being Pragmatic Hero, but those are not always presented options.
  • Mass Effect:
    • The turian Councilor is a rare Commander Contrarian of actual superior rank than the main character. No matter what Shepard does, the turian gives him/her guff for it. Let the rachni queen live? He calls you reckless and stupid. Kill the queen? "Do you enjoy committing genocide?" There's also his stance on the "Reapers". They have dismissed that claim. Once the Reapers do show up though, he does a 180 and is the first councilor to offer a way for the turians to aid humanity.
    • In the first game, your squadmates sometimes do this in order to provide perspectives for either side of the big moral choices. They're ranked on a scale from "most Paragon" to "most Renegade", and whichever two squadmates come on a mission, the scale determines which argument they'll give. So for example, if you take Ashley and Kaiden to Noveria, Ash will try and convince you to kill the rachni queen. But if you replay the mission with Ashley and Wrex, the latter wants to kill the queen and Ashley wants to save her. There's also a bug where someone can offer both perspectives regarding whether to save the Council near the end. This system was dropped in later games to have squadmates offer static opinions instead.
  • Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty: Colonel Campbell, possibly Raiden's only tether to the Snake saga and the mission at large, frequently deflects any critical questions about the mission from Raiden, and adamantly insists that Solid Snake is dead and "not factored into the simulation". No matter how valid Raiden's objections are, he can't win, and can only proceed along a predetermined, rail-roaded path through the facility. This "Colonel" turns out to be an AI manipulating Raiden into carrying out The Patriots' orders. By the time they spell it all out for him, it's already too late. Every possible action Raiden can take -- including suicide -- is a winning move for them.
  • Shin Megami Tensei: Your two male allies represent law and chaos respectively, and want you to go along with their ideology; as such, whenever you make a decision leaning in one direction, the other ally will call you out for it. For example, when a beggar asks you for money, refusing will result in the law hero criticizing you for your lack of compassion; but if you agree then the chaos hero will protest that it's a waste of money and you need it better yourself.
  • Super Mario Bros.: Good old Waluigi. If you lose to him, you're a loser. If you beat him, you're a cheater. If you're working with him, you're dead weight. Charles Martinet has on occasion lampshaded that one of Waluigi's defining character traits is that he will always find reason to nitpick, argue and whine.
  • Tactics Ogre: Vyce serves this role, as he turns against you no matter what choice you make at the end of Chapter 1. If you take the Law route, Denam is complicit in the slaughter of innocents on the Duke's orders and Vyce turns on you, calling you a murderer. If you take the Chaos route, Denam deserts rather than slaughter the village and Vyce turns on you, saying you're a coward who doesn't have the guts to do what it takes to win. If you take the Chaos route at the end of Chapter 1, then choose the Neutral route at the end of Chapter 2, Denam returns to the Duke's service only to have Vyce turn on you AGAIN and run away, saying he could never serve in the same army as somebody like you. Ends up being justified, as when you finally defeat him in chapter 3, he admits he was really only acting out of his jealousy of Denam, not because of anything he really does or doesn't believe.
  • The Talos Principle: Milton challenges the robot protagonist (and by extension, the player) with philosophical questions and typically does a pretty good job of dicing apart the answers the player throws at him. His express job as an AI was to instill doubt, after all.
  • Touhou Project: Justified in the case of Seija Kijin. Since she's an Amanojaku, being a contrarian who opposes everyone she interacts with is a part of her very nature. It extends so far that she likes what others hate, and hates herself when she makes others happy. This personality trait, of course, makes her very disliked, a fact she loves.
  • Undertale: When you finally face Undyne, she's angry with you regardless of how you've played. Her anger is justified in a No Mercy route, and to a lesser extent a Neutral one, where she'll even call you out if you killed specific characters (Especially if you killed Papyrus), commenting that she thought humans were compassionate, and claims that you killed them because it was easy for you, rather than self-defense (which actually is true if you've killed Papyrus). If you've played as a pacifist, her justification gets flimsier: she says that she thought humans were cool, but you're just a wimp. She also thinks it's just an act. It soon becomes clear that Undyne doesn't want to face the moral implications of killing the protagonist (who is blatantly a child), so she's making excuses for why they need to die anyway.
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 3: Kite fills this role in most of the Colony 9-based sidequests, spending most of his time either undermining or opposing Zeon's efforts to get the colony to support itself via farming. Unlike many cases of this trope, the characters recognize that he isn't just doing it to be a Jerkass; he legitimately believes that Zeon's leadership and farming project isn't what's best for the colony, though that doesn't stop him from being the main obstacle to the party as they help Zeon make the colony self-sufficient. He's also shown to be not wholly incorrect in his assessment, as neither Zeon nor the rest of the colony knows the first thing about farming. It isn't until they get some advice from someone who actually knows how to grow crops that the project actually becomes feasible, forcing the colony to scramble for supplies in the meantime.

    Web Animation 
  • In Lackadaisy, Marigold Gang Highwaymen Nico and Serafine treat their superior, Consummate Professional Mordecai, as a mere obstacle to the exciting parts of their job, and most of their interactions are suspiciously astute rejoinders to his commentary that serve to challenge his authority, question his loyalties, dismiss the substance of his orders and steamroll him into letting them do what they want anyway.
    Mordecai: *As Serafine fires on a shed* This is going to take longer if you scatter them.
    Serafine: *As Nico rolls his eyes* What happened to you dat made you hate fun?
  • Grif usually plays this role for Sarge in Red vs. Blue, though Grif is usually justified in that Sarge is an Ax-Crazy Neidermeyer who makes killing off Grif his priority in his plans, no matter how detrimental it would be to the situation. It's more often that Sarge is a genuine contrarian to Grif, just because he hates him, to the point that Sarge will refuse to believe basic facts if Grif mentions them.
    Sarge: Normally, I would agree with Simmons. But that would mean that I would agree with Grif! Therefore, I will simply grunt ambiguously. [does so]

    Web Original 
  • Cracked's 5 Logical Fallacies That Make You Wrong More Than You Think touches on humanity's love for this with a section on the argumentative theory of reasoning.
  • Alfred Jodl in Hitler Rants. Every single time Hitler plans to do something, Jodl always disagrees with his plan, predictably causing Hitler to rant again.
  • Best of the Worst: Mike has become infamous for going against consensus when making his pick for "best of the worst," often using very shaky logic that strongly implies he just wants to play devil's advocate. In the "Very Scary Christmas" episode in 2019, he picks Santa Claws instead of the consensus Silent Night, Deadly Night 2. Jay responds in deadpan, "Your antics have become predictable," causing Mike to protest, "No! I'm not being a contrarian!"

    Western Animation 
  • Wheeler plays this role on Captain Planet and the Planeteers. One website mockingly referred to him as the "Dumb White Guy Who Always Says and Does the Wrong Thing," which pretty much sums up the Unfortunate Implications of using a character like this when your main characters are a Five-Token Band.
  • Eric The Cavalier in the Dungeons & Dragons (1983) cartoon, though his concerns were often helpful to the party as he became less of a contrarian as the show went on.
  • Brian from Family Guy often takes this role, which is lampshaded by Lois.
    Lois: I think you just got to be in the "out" group. Whoever's on top, whoever's in power, whoever's successful, you gotta be on the other side or you don't feel like the smartest guy in the room. All you are, my dear, is a contrarian.
  • In thisRobot Chicken sketch, this is part of the Kyle Reese parody’s glorious "Reason You Suck" Speech to the Vegan character when she refuses to eat a hamburger that would change the timeline from a dystopia where cows are the dominant species and subsequently killing all humans
  • Transformers:
    • Rattrap in Beast Wars always doubted Optimus Primal's plans, always thought his fellow Maximals were all gonna die, and was by far the laziest of the group. Then again, he was a total Jerkass. Maybe he was just Tempting Fate to spite him and let him win. Well, it worked. He was one of the only three characters to survive the entirety of both Beast Wars and Beast Machines.
    • Also, before getting into the outright betrayal he's best known for, the original Starscream seemed to exist only to tell Megatron how stupid his plan was, often without having his own idea. You get the feeling that Starscream really doesn't have his own ideas — if Megs said grass was green, Screamer would say it's purple just to spite him.
      • He would occasionally have useful criticisms like when he pointed out that if Megatron took all the Decepticons' power rectifier chips (which give Transformers their special or unique abilities) for an upcoming duel with Optimus Prime, then the other 'cons would lose their special abilities. When a battle inevitably broke out, Starscream snidely observed the battle might be going better if the Decepticons still had their power chips.
  • Played as straight as you could possibly get in WordGirl which introduced a recurring barbarian-esque villain named "Nocan the Contrarian" who is true to his name.

    Real Life 
  • A New York Times article explains what is called the "argumentative theory of reasoning," which suggests that arguments and reasoning at their core are actually social power plays that we developed primarily to gain power over others. This explains why Confirmation Bias and clinging to wrong beliefs even after they're definitively discredited are both so prevalent within humanity; by this theory, admitting to being on the wrong side of an argument means lowering your position/status in an unspoken social hierarchy. It is also likely (at least subconsciously) why so many fanatics seem to want to be right more for the sake of being right than for actually improving quality of life.
  • In the Roman Catholic Church, the Devil's Advocate was an actual position, used when determining sainthood. Said person was there specifically to argue against the canonization. Pope John Paul II removed this position, and replaced it with the Promoter of Justice, the guy who is in charge of examining how accurate the inquiry on the saintliness of the candidate really is. Not so much "Why this is wrong!" as it is "Why is this right?" Notably, this led to a ton more people getting sainthood in a short amount of time. They sort of brought back the Devil's Advocate one time since. When Mother Teresa was up for beatification, Christopher Hitchens, one of her most vocal critics (and an atheist to boot), was invited to give evidence against the process.
  • In the British Parliamentary system, the largest party not in government forms His Majesty's Loyal Opposition, whose official job description is to criticize and pick holes in everything that His Majesty's Government proposes. The theory is that this ensures that HMG's policies are well enough thought-out to stand this kind of critical examination.note 
    • Many former British colonies or dominions with a Westminster form of parliamentary government work in a similar fashion.
      • In Canadian and Australian politics, the largest minority party will form an unofficial "shadow cabinet" (which is not as evil as it sounds) that pokes holes at and creates "Option B" type policies to whatever the majority party proposes.
      • The British government does this too, because of their tradition of a new government taking over immediately after an election (as opposed to America's two-month "lame duck" period). This means that His Majesty's Loyal Opposition can hit the ground running as soon as it gets into power.
    • In theory, the three branches of the U.S. government are supposed to do this for the other branches as part of the concept of "checks and balances". In practice (especially lately), they tend to just vote the party line, or abuse the hell out of the Filibuster in the Senate, leading to bizarre situations where a bill is struck down 58-40note , or negating a UN proposal 65-30.note  This is why George Washington didn't want political parties.
      • It is especially telling when candidates get the nomination for promising to never compromise, as seen here.
      Richard Mourdock: I hope to build a conservative majority in the U.S. Senate so "bipartisanship" becomes Democrats joining Republicans to roll back the size of government.

      (He lost the general election, by the way. But this was because of his extremely offensive comment indicating that a rape that results in a pregnancy is a "gift from God" to the victim, not because of his hyper-partisanship.)
    • Most opposition parties in democracies often go through phases of this. See the current state of the Liberals in Australia, or the Democrats in the US for that matter.
  • As mentioned in the Captain Pellaeon entry, above, pointing out things that may affect a commanding officer's orders is one of the traits of a good second in command.
  • In modern civilized courts of law, every accused party is entitled to a defender. In many cases, especially in those countries where the burden of proof in criminal matters lies with the state, the defense attorney will do his job by attacking the prosecutor's story.
    • While an "alternate theory of the crime" that shows the defendant not to be guilty can be very useful in convincing a jury (it's usually the simplest way to poke holes in the prosecution's theory), it is not strictly necessary in a system of presumed innocence. The Defense simply has to convince the court that the prosecution's version of events are WRONG, they don't have to establish what the "real" events would be instead.
    • Prosecutors and judges will sometimes do this to the police when they feel the evidence is insufficient to proceed with a case or issuance of a warrant.
  • Academic Peer Review can also involve taking this position by necessity. Many reviewers take the stance that no matter how good a paper may look, there will be room for improvement somewhere. Consequently, they can and will criticize any part of the paper in the hope that the authors will improve things even further or clarify parts that may have needed it.
  • Deniz Baykal, former leader of the Cumhuriyet Halk Partisi (Republican People's Party, the main opposition party in Turkey) is widely regarded as this. With good reason.
  • Braxton Bragg of the US Civil War has gone down in history as a poor commander partially because of this reputation. In one anecdote, one of his pre-war superiors declared, "My God, Bragg, you have quarreled with every officer in the army, now you are quarreling with yourself!" when he was serving in a dual role, and in both roles refused a request from the other.
  • Heinz Guderian, one of the 'inventors' of blitzkrieg. He claimed that he was hated by his contemporaries and superior because he was too smart for his own good and they didn't like the way he poked holes in their plans and was basically always right. In fact he was hated because he refused to acknowledge others' abilities or contributions and hogged credit for accomplishments, criticised any and all strategies that did not give himself and his forces the most important role, sucked up to Hitler by taking Hitler's side whenever his superiors disagreed with Hitler and taking care never to contradict or criticise Hitler himself, and presided over the Kangaroo Court show-trials that sentenced several hundred fellow officers implicated in the July Plot (to kill Hitler) to death. Despite being a committed Nazi, after the war he claimed that he had secretly opposed Hitler all along and that he had been the only competent senior commander in the entire Heer — going on to claim that the war had only been lost because his superiors and Hitler had ignored his advice. In reality, he was only barely competent - he was single-handedly responsible for the Heer's near-failure in the battles of Smolensk and Kiev (in both cases he abandoned the operational plan to attack the Soviets' flanks in favour of frontal attacks). His forces also lost the most vehicles and men during Operations Barbarossa and Typhoon due to his enthusiasm for frontal attacks and utter contempt for vehicle repair and logistics. So extreme was his (often one-sided) rivalry with his contemporaries and superiors that his troops actually fought other German troops during The Battle of Smolensk - Guderian wanted all the captured Soviet trucks for his own troops since he was losing his own trucks at a far higher rate than anyone else.
  • In a bizarre episode in the Israeli Knesset, the Arab members ended up voting FOR a "Bibi bill" to confer extended eligibility on Netanyahu, after Netanyahu himself repudiated it, since "whatever Bibi doesn't want, we want."
  • The public description written by Aleister Crowley for Ordo Templi Orientis included the appointment of two “Revolutionaries” whose responsibility was to oppose and attack everything proposed by the Highest and Most Holy King (National Grand Master), regardless of what their actual views were.
  • Movie critic Armond White has been frequently accused of being one, due to giving negative reviews to positively received movies and vice versa (perhaps the most notorious being his negative Toy Story 3 review, which got so many things wrong about the movie that some people wondered if he'd actually seen it) with such regularity that it's often joked that if Armond White hates it, it must be a good movie. In fact, it was an unexpectedly big event when Armond gave a positive review to Godzilla (2014), in agreement with the general consensus.
  • Your personal opinions are definitely going to vary on who is and is not one, but it certainly seems that a great deal of American politics consists of this.
  • Jack Horner, the palaeontologist who consulted for the Jurassic Park film series, argued for a long time that T. rex was an obligate scavenger. This started out as a simple thought experiment (the point Horner was originally making is that you shouldn't make assumptions about an animal based on the kind of teeth it has), but as Horner started receiving counter-arguments, he made this position an absolute. He even made claims that were blatantly untrue to back up his points, like that T. rex had beady eyes (its eyes were actually huge by dinosaur standards), that it's teeth were built for chewing up bones (T. rex couldn't chew), and that it had poor eyesight in general (the fact it had binocular vision makes this extremely unlikely). It got to the point that some palaeontologists doubted whether he actually believed this, or just kept going with it because of how many public appearances it gave him. Eventually, Horner gave up and conceded that T. rex probably hunted and scavenged.
  • While having roots deeper than just spite, certain "coal-rollers" (diesel trucks modified to dump more fuel into the system than originally designed, thus spewing out coal-black smoke) do so to spite Prius drivers and environmentalists in general.
  • When Tony Abbott was just the leader of Australia's opposition party, just about every stance he took was the exact opposite of his opponent's. Once he became Prime Minister, the decisions he made cost him dearly in the polls since a lot of his viewpoints were unpopular for a reason. Ultimately this cost him the Prime Minister's position, as his own party booted him from it and elected a new leader.

Chief: You call this a page ending?! First a predicable stinger, and now you got it all rhetorical?! Get outta here before I Red Link your Word Crufting ass into next week!


Video Example(s):



In "President Obama Meets with the GOP", President Obama is having a meeting with various Republican officials to make bipartisan agreements for the country, only for the Republicans to disagree with him at every turn. Obama manages to use their contrarian impulses to his advantage by proposing things that Republicans normally favor (small government, no gun-control laws, repealing the Affordable Care Act) only for them to object anyway. This is punctuated by the fact that the Republicans seem to notice this and try in vain to keep themselves from objecting by using the objects around them (tape, wads of paper, staples, etc) to silence themselves.

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Main / CommanderContrarian

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