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Genre Savvy

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Relax, it's just a squirrel.

Angela Moore: This doesn't make any sense.
Shawn Hunter: It does if you've seen as many horror movies as I have. This is classic. The locked door, the scary janitor, the bloody warning and… our soon-to-be first victim.
[everyone looks at Kenny]
Kenny: Me? Why me?
Cory Matthews: Well Kenny, it's certainly not going to be any of us!

A Genre Savvy character doesn't necessarily know they're in a story, but they do know of stories like their own and what worked in them and what didn't. They may attempt to apply the lessons they've learned from movies, books, or other fiction to their own situation, or they may restrict themselves to snarky asides and observations. The exact opposite of Genre Blindness.

For cases when a Genre Savvy character attempts to apply the tropes of a different genre of story to their own situation, see Wrong Genre Savvy. When a person becomes too Genre Savvy for their own good and offs themselves, see Death by Genre Savviness. If a character uses his Genre Savviness just to make humorous observations, he's a Meta Guy. When characters are not consciously Genre Savvy but regularly act within the limitations of the genre they're in anyway, they are Functional Genre Savvy. If a character acts like a Genre Blind person due to their Genre Savviness, this is Contractual Genre Blindness. Compare with Medium Awareness where the character knows that they're in a story and what medium they are in. May result in You Watch Too Much X.

Not to Be Confused with a character who has observed what works and what doesn't in their own world, which is Taught by Experience.

For specific tips on surviving the world of fiction, see The Universal Genre Savvy Guide.

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Other examples:

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  • Some characters from Cool Kids Table games are destined to be savvy towards the setting, and sometimes the players themselves become wise to what Alan might be planning when he GMs.
    • Creepy Town has Oliver Kennedy, who of course is this as he's based around Randy Meeks from Scream.
    • Since they've all read the books, or are at least familiar with the Potterverse, the players in Hogwarts: The New Class are well aware of all the things that can go wrong in the magical world and plan accordingly.
    • Yuki from Sequinox is well aware of many Magical Girl tropes, likely because her mom works as a localizer. This helps when she discovers she and her friends are magical girls themselves. Unfortunately this also dips into Wrong Genre Savvy since the presence of Chel and Syd pushes the series more towards an Affectionate Parody.

  • X Minus One's "The C-Chute": Stuart describes Mullen's plan as something that you might see in a "video" (that is, a film).

  • No Matter What Happens I Still Won't Become An Anime Character has Sakura Kokoro who has anime plot hook spotting down to a science. Justified, as the whole point of the game is to avoid being entangled in an anime plot.
  • In Survival of the Fittest, v4 character Bounce had been a massive fan of the series prior to her own involvement in it and as such references things like The Power of Friendship never working in SOTF and the fact that, as an unfit, unpopular nerd, there's no point in her making plans because people like her never stand a chance.
  • In We Are Our Avatars, Awe Striker and Ozbourne, due to being humans from worlds very much like ours, often have familiarity with the fictional universes that many of the other characters come from. This is fairly common amongst most Author Avatars, but a lot of other characters happen to be as well.
  • Both the players and the Godmodder in Destroy the Godmodder are this, and this may be one of the reasons why they are so powerful.
    • Taken up to eleven by the dangerously meta Crystalcat, who is able to exploit his status as a character in a forum game.
  • On r/DanganRoleplay, participants play out their own Danganronpa Class Trials in which a mix of characters from the games participate in Class Trials try to figure out who among them committed a murder. The Class Trials are typically treated as taking place in their own strange continuity where the characters remember the events of the games, even if they were killed during them. This tends to lead to some rampant Genre Savviness on the cast's part as they often point out repeated Killing Game tropes due to their familiarity with the original games.

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  • RWBY: In Volume 6, the heroes are forced to fight a Humongous Mecha. As Oscar uses his vantage point in the airship to try and identify the location of the mecha's shield generator, Ruby suggests over comms that it might be on the back because, in the video games she plays, that's where they're always located. Weiss interrupts the conversation to complain that Ruby's being stupid because this isn't a video game. However, Ren identifies the location of the shield generator to be exactly where Ruby anticipated.

Alternative Title(s): Dangerously Genre Savvy


Trixie Wall

Crocker devises a scheme to lure Timmy into a trap by painting Trixie on a wall.

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Main / PaintedTunnelRealTrain

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