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Likes Clark Kent, Hates Superman

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And I heard Harry's said he wants Spider-Man dead
Ah, but his buddy Pete he can trust

Many people have a Secret Identity, and since the whole point of a secret identity is to have as few people know it as possible, sometimes you might get a person who likes that guy in the office without realizing he's actually the superhero they absolutely hate, and in the worst of cases are trying to kill.

See Loves My Alter Ego and Hates My Secret Identity, both of which play with inverting the dynamic of this trope, the former being summed up as "In Love With Superman, Indifferent to Clark Kent" and the latter, "Adores Superman, Hates Clark Kent." Contrast Two-Person Love Triangle.


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    Film — Animation 
  • The LEGO Ninjago Movie: Lloyd is hated by nearly everyone because his dad happens to be an evil supervillain, although they don't know that he's actually part of the superhero group that fights against him.
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse:
    • Miles' father is a By-the-Book Cop who loves Miles but disapproves of the new Spider-Man's vigilante antics. Escalates when he sees Spider-Man standing over his brother's body and immediately puts out an APB. Zig-zagged when he comes to appreciate Spider-Man's heroism and realize that he's innocent of the murder.
    • Miles' uncle, Aaron, is a Cool Uncle and supportive mentor to him, but as the Prowler, he is an enemy to Miles' Spider-Man.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • Spider-Man: Norman Osborn is impressed with his son Harry's best friend, Peter Parker, and sees him as a kindred spirit. He hates Spider-Man, however, and eventually turns against Peter when he realizes they're the same person. His respect for Peter comes back just a bit as Norman dies at the end, as he begs Peter not to tell his son about his double identity.
    • In Spider-Man 2 Harry continues to be friends with Peter, despite having sworn revenge on Spider-Man for his (supposed) role in Norman's death. Naturally, Harry is not pleased to learn that Peter and Spider-Man are the same person, and spends Spider-Man 3 trying to kill his (former) best friend. Similar to Norman, he decides to help Peter in the final battle after figuring out what really happened to his father, ultimately pulling a Heroic Sacrifice and letting him know that he forgives him before dying himself.
  • Spider-Man: Homecoming downplays this.
    • Adrian Toomes, a.k.a. The Vulture, likes Peter Parker, the teenage boy who is trying to date his daughter, and doesn't really hate Spider-Man, who he respects for his heroism but is annoyed that he's starting to interfere in all his nefarious plans. Soon after meeting the boy in his civilian identity, Toomes figures out that Peter is Spider-Man, but has enough respect for the young hero that after Spidey sends him to jail, Toomes lies to another inmate about knowing Spidey's secret identity.
    • Flash Thompson appears to admire Spider-Man despite hating Peter Parker in real life.
  • The Batman (2022) inverts this, as the Riddler is a Loony Fan of Batman but hates Bruce Wayne.


    Video Games 
  • The Wonderful 101: Luka despises the Wonderful 100 due to blaming them for the death of his mother. However, he does seem to like his school teacher, Mr. Wedgewood, who happens to be the leader of the Wonderful 100, as Wonder Red.


Video Example(s):


Ken's Secret

After meeting his opponent in their civilian roles in the real world for the first time, the Digimon Emperor shatters Davis' faith in his idol by revealing he's the same Ken Ichijouji Davis has always looked up to.

How well does it match the trope?

4.75 (4 votes)

Example of:

Main / TheUnmasking

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