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Domino Revelation

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A Domino Revelation occurs when the revelation of a previously hidden truth leads to another revelation, then another, like the knocking over of dominoes.

Often evoked in fantasy works, where the revelation that one mythological or legendary species exists leads to finding out that many more also do, and works featuring conspiracy theories, where finding the shadowy figures behind a seemingly minor crime opens up a vista of sinister plots all emanating from the same source. In romance, one confession can often lead the way to one or several more.

It gets a good bit of use in Urban Fantasy and Steampunk works as well.

All Myths Are True is a common end result when all dominoes have fallen. May overlap with The Masquerade or The Conspiracy where the protagonist is introduced to their secrets. Compare If Jesus, Then Aliens. Contrast Arbitrary Skepticism, when there are further paranormal phenomena that are often real, but not believed by the skeptical characters.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica does this with Awful Truths. In the wake of Mami's death, Kyouko's appearance shows that few magical girls are as altruistic as Mami was. This leads to Sayaka's confrontation with Kyouko on the bridge, where it's revealed that Soul Gems literally contain the soul of a magical girl. This, in turn, leads Sayaka to fall into despair, corrupting her Soul Gem and revealing that a corrupted Soul Gem doesn't break or disappear, but instead turns into a Grief Seed, a revelation which prompts Kyubey to explain to Madoka the true nature of the magical girl system. Additionally, the process of Sayaka falling into despair leads to a chain of events resulting in the revelation that Homura has some form of time travel/timeline changing ability. Basically, the revelations show piece-by-piece how the inner workings of the fairly cliche-looking premise are actually terrible, terrible things.
  • Valvrave the Liberator starts with the revelation that the school in the supposedly peaceful nation of JIOR was actually hiding the titular superweapons. Investigating this, L-elf discovers that the teachers and all of the other adults on the module were actually military officials, and only the students were kept in the dark about it. From this, he eventually gets to the revelation that the entire module was made for the development of the Valvraves and their power source.
  • One Piece is full of this, where most of the world's hidden mysteries are inter-connected.

    Comic Books 
  • Beasts of Burden: Vampires, zombies, ghosts, and other things show up.
  • Werewolf by Night: Werewolves aren't the only supernatural thing out there - there are also weretigers, vampire, demons, and other superheroes!
  • Legion of Super-Heroes: In the Earthwar Saga storyline, the attacks on Earth by the Resource Raiders turns out to be the advance guard of an attack by the Klingonesque Khunds. Whose leader is secretly being controlled by the shadowy Dark Circle. Who are secretly being commanded by Evil Sorcerer Mordru.
  • Exploited in Red Robin. Vicki Vale managed to put together the secret identities of most of the Bat Family though this method, connecting the dots by looking at relationship connections between various characters. Tim unravels her hard earned theory through a Identity Impersonator trick, having "Tim" get publicly hospitalized at an event he knew he was going to be attacked at by assassins who have also started to piece things together. The move manages to convince both Vicki and the assassin group that he and Red Robin aren't not the same person, which means the rest of their assumptions have to be wrong as well.


  • Cal Leandros: Elves that call themselves Auphe are first introduced followed by a revelation of hidden monsters like Banshee and Trolls in the world amongst humans.
  • Jane Yellowrock: The main hereon is a skin-walker, she fights vampires and has a witch for a best friend.
  • Mercy Thompson: in this series we meet werewolves, vampires, and witches right off the bat followed by ghosts, demons, and eventually shamans and mages of ill repute.
  • Harry Potter: Witches and wizards, giants, dragons, giant magic spiders... the list is a little long for this series.
  • Kitty Norville: Well same thing we meet werewolves first, then learn of vampires, werepanthers, magic users, psychics, and other types of the supernatural ilk.
  • The Hollows: Witches and vampires exist, so why not ghosts, demons, and other such creatures?
  • The Otherworld: the woman of the other world are all sorts of supernatural types. We have witches, werewolves, nercourgists, half-demons, and angels. Of course this trope is in full effect.
  • The Sookie Stackhouse Mysteries: After the vampires have their coming out party we meet shifters, werewolves, weretigers, fairies, and several other supernaturals.
  • Soul Screamers: If the fact the main character is a banshee isn't enough, there are reapers, angels, and demons all hell bent on human souls.
  • The Twilight Saga: First come the vampires. Then come the werewolves.
  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians: Satyrs, the Minotaur, Greek gods, centaurs, nymphs... Again, the list is rather long.
    • The various sequel series take this to eleven, with the revelation that the Norse, Roman, and Egyptian pantheons, AND the various monsters and magic that go along with them, also exist. The existence of Jesus is also hinted at.
  • The Dresden Files: Although protagonist Harry is himself a wizard, his knowledge of the supernatural world is often rather lacking, leading to many revelations throughout the series that he learns of at the same time as the reader.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Charmed: First we learn of witches and demons, then angels, spirits, fairies, and a whole mess of critters come crawling/teleporting/orbing/shimmering out of the woodwork.
  • Fringe: Similar to The X-Files with aliens, mind control, and other weird things being revealed.
  • Lost Girl: All supernatural creatures exist, some are True Fae others just call themselves fae and are in fact Succubi, Spirits, Werewolves, and all manner of other magical creatures.
  • Supernatural: Dean and Sam are hunters. They fight demons, astral creations, angry angels, pagan gods, ghosts, etc.
  • The X-Files: Earliest TV example of this trope; from Monster of the Week to aliens in the basement with werewolves, wild men, demonic beings, and eventually Body Horror and evil spirits... this series had it all.
  • True Blood: Vampires first, shapeshifters, then goddesses, werewolves, fae, werepanthers, and witches.
  • The Vampire Diaries: Again vampires first then we learn that witches and werewolves also exist.
  • My Babysitter's a Vampire: The main characters have a babysitter that is a vampire. They also find out that one of them can see the future and that witches exist.

    Video Games 
  • Persona: Well, it's more Fantasy Kitchen Sink at times. Spirits (demons in Japanese) exist, but that's merely the catch-all term for supernaturals. And they ALL are very real projections of one's psyche.
  • Shin Megami Tensei I: Angels, demons, and god....yes, it's all real.
  • Played for Laughs in Catherine. All Vincent wanted to know was whether Catherine was real or a hallucination. Thanks to some ambiguous phrasing, he found out that she was real, she was actually a succubus, that demons and gods are real, his strange dreams are the result of a curse, and that the bartender is the Big Bad... over the course of one conversation. With the bartender. Who didn't realize that Vincent hadn't caught on to his schemes until it was too late.
  • In the Zero Escape series, the games tend to build up multiple mysteries involving multiple characters over multiple routes. Many of the routes hit temporary dead ends that require info gained in other routes to continue. However, once you start moving past these dead ends, they tend to turn into chains of reveal after reveal. Especially in the final route where all the major mysteries finally get revealed.
  • In the first Yakuza game? It is revealed that Reina's twin sister is actually her, Haruka is HER daughter, she stole the money from a poltician, and he is coming to kill her...In about 30 minutes of gameplay, all over the course of about two conversations. After about an entire game of no real progress.

    Visual Novels 
  • In Double Homework, the protagonist getting put in a different summer school program, which seems more real than his original one but of which he himself was previously unaware, leads to the realization that his original program is part of a sex experiment, and the school counselor is the scientist running the experiment.

    Web Original 
  • Noob has had this happen a few times:
    • Season 3 Wham Episode and aftermath: Fantöm's avatar has been illegally enhanced all along. By the game's creators themselves, who put the blame on Fantöm (who knew nothing) the second the secret is made public. It's Master Zen who revealed the fact and the protagonist's new recruit Nazetrîme has been working for him all along.
    • Late Season 5: Judge Dead is Tenshirock's son and the person he's actually trying to drive away from MMORPG. On a side note, Teshirock's wife/Judge Dead's mother is dead and Spectre has the condition that is implied to have caused her death. Tenshirock figured it out and convinced him to retire a few years ago. This is the reason Spectre was retired until Season 3.
    • Noob: La Quête Légendaire: Sparadrap's father is not a priest as he's been telling everyone, but a mafia big wig passing as one. Elyx, Master Zen's second in command, may be his mother... or Ystos'... or that of a third son of his father's. His father forgot and Elyx can't help because she got a lobotomy between giving birth and the present day.

    Western Animation 
  • Gravity Falls: The first episode of the show ends with Stan retreating into a secret passage behind the Mystery Shack's vending machine. At the end of the first season, we learn that it leads to a secret laboratory, where it is then revealed that Stan has had Journal #1 this entire time, before using a secret code spread throughout all three books to activate a mysterious device, cementing that not only is Stan fully aware of the town's strangeness, but that he's working on a project that's directly connected with the elusive Author.


Video Example(s):


Here We Go

In the final scene of the first season of Gravity Falls, Grunkle Stan's secret from the first episode is finally revealed, and it leads to a few other revelations.

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