Follow TV Tropes


More Hypnotizable Than He Thinks

Go To

"But I haven't even hypnotized him yet! I just said the word 'Chicken!'"
Stage Hypnotist in regards to Dick Daring, The Replacements

Alice has the power to (or has acquired a device that can) hypnotize a person, and she wants to try it out on Bob. Bob merely scoffs at this, saying that he cannot be hypnotized. However, Alice tries anyway, and ends up successfully hypnotizing Bob.

If the character snaps out of hypnosis, expect them to say something along the lines of, "See? I told you I can't be hypnotized!"

Distantly related to Tempting Fate. See also Unpaused. A form of Irony. This is somewhat Truth in Television, but also not — trance is a state of consciousness that people enter and leave many times a day, so someone can be hypnotized and not recognize it, largely because the memory blackout and loss of free will are complete myth, but if they know someone is trying to hypnotize them, it won't work if they don't want it, as all they need to do is not focus on whatever the hypnotist wants them to focus on.

See also Hypno Fool.


    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA: Angelica Ainsworth and Beatrice Flowerchild kidnap Rin Tohsaka and Luvia Edelfelt and decide to brainwash them into slaves. Rin and Luvia boast that they are first-class magi and it won't work, only for them to instantly go into a trance, twice. When Beatrice accidentally snaps them out of it, they boast that they won't fall for it again now that they have seen the technique, but they instantly go into trances both times.
  • Galaxy Angel: In one episode, Forte is obliged to go to a resort wearing a frilly dress, flirt with a strange man and pose for a photo with him. She's not comfortable with this, so Normad proposes to use a Hypno Pendulum to make it easy for her. She laughs it off, doubting that even a monkey would fall for that... and on the count of three, her head instantly droops, and she jumps back up with a Bishie Sparkle, ready to chat up the first guy she sees.
    Normad: She's more simple-minded than a monkey.

    Comic Books 
  • Disney comics:
    • In the Mickey Mouse story "The Beast Within", as Mickey scoffs that it's impossible to hypnotize an uncooperative person, the hypnotist in question hypnotizes him in mid-sentence. When Mickey comes to, he finishes the sentence he was saying.
    • In the Donald Duck story "An Eye for Detail" by Don Rosa, the hypnotizing of Donald goes so fast that even the hypnotist is surprised.
    Donald: Hypnotist? I can't be hypnotized!
    Hypnotist: I shall try nevertheless! Mr. Duck... look deep into my— [Donald is hypnotized]
  • A memorable one in Deadpool Annual has Madcap try to hypnotize Thor.
    You attempt to enfog the mind of a God? Thine attempts are laughable . Also, thine attempts succeeded.
  • Chuck Billy: Chuck's cousin buys a hypnosis book and Chuck refuses to believe it works. Trying to prove otherwise, Chuck's cousin decides to hypnotize him into believing he's a dog. At first, it seems it doesn't work but then it's revealed the hypnosis doesn't have immediate effects.

    Fan Fiction  

  • In Lauralot's fic The Doctors and the Nurses They Adore Me So Jonathan Crane believes he cannot be hypnotized. He is incorrect. Actually something of a deconstruction, as the repeated loss of control proves very damaging to him.

  • In Nights of Cabiria, Cabiria laughs at the notion that the stage hypnotist could hypnotize her. He then rather cruelly hypnotizes Cabiria into believing she is meeting her dream lover.
  • In Dark Shadows, Dr. Julia Hoffman proposes a hypnotism session to get to the heart of whatever issues Barnabas Collins suffers from. Barnabas expresses doubts that it's possible to hypnotize him, but is cut off mid-sentence after the medallion is dangled in front of him for a few seconds.
  • In Now You See Me Merritt is a mentalist who manages to hypnotize several people who doubt his abilities, the audience, FBI agents, the other horsemen...
  • In The Story of Adèle H, a heckler who denounces the hypnotist Adele is seeing as a fraud is called up on stage and is easily hypnotized. Subverted when Adele later discovers that he was a paid actor, and the hypnotist is a fraud.

  • The Berenstain Bears: In the chapter book The Berenstain Bears at the Teen Rock Café, Ralph Ripoff offers to do a hypnotist's act as part of the opening of the titular café. While he's practicing with willing volunteers, Ferdy Factual claims he can't be hypnotized, but is easily put into a trance, after which Ralph has him act like the bear he most admires. This gets some laughs when he starts acting like himself. Subverted with Too-Tall Grizzly, who also claims he can't be hypnotized, but appears to fall under Ralph's control easily; it soon turns out he's faking it in order to scare one of his gang who'd laughed at him earlier (Ralph, for his part, figured out Too-Tall was faking as soon as he started talking while still in his "trance", but played along).
  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Third Wheel: After a school assembly featuring a hypnotist, a kid who thinks he was a fake tries hypnotizing two other kids into thinking they're superglued together. It works a little too well, and they have to track down the hypnotist at his job to unstick them.
  • This happens to Charles Wallace in A Wrinkle in Time when he opens his mind up to the Man With Red Eyes out of arrogant curiosity.

    Live-Action TV 

  • On at least two separate occasions on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Buffy is completely oblivious to the fact that she is under a spell. In both cases, she is fully aware that a spell is in effect on the people around her, but she's convinced that she has "Slayer Immunity" protecting her from it. The results are pretty hilarious.
  • In the season 1 finale of Eureka, Beverly hypnotizes Fargo so she can interrogate him.
    Beverly: When I snap my fingers, you will wake feeling refreshed and remember nothing about what we discussed here today. One... two... three. [snaps fingers]
    Fargo: [smugly] ...which is why it's not even possible for me to be hypnotized.
    Beverly: Well, Fargo, we'll just have to keep working on it.
  • Smallville: In "Hug", Chloe and Clark go to see this man affected by meteor rock who claims he can hypnotize people. Chloe disbelieves him, he promptly does it to her, and he makes her kiss Clark. Afterward...
    Chloe: [even smugger than Fargo] See? Not even possible. [pause] Why do I taste mint?
  • The hypnotist episode of Murder, She Wrote has somebody do this to Jessica.
  • Star Trek original episode, "Dagger of the Mind," had Kirk try out the Neural Neutralizer, complete with him not realizing he blanked out for a second when it was turned on.
  • In the Star Trek: Voyager episode "Spirit Folk", the holodeck is malfunctioning (again) and the characters in the holonovel start noticing things outside the constraints of the program. They try to hypnotise the Doctor to get answers, which the Doctor points out won't work on him and it doesn't, until the characters remove his mobile emitter (believing it to be a magic talisman) which automatically transfers him to the same malfunctioning hologrid as they are on and he is immediately hypnotised.
  • In Happy Days, the cowardly Ralph Malph is terrified by an approaching tornado, so a doctor hypnotizes him despite that he says he's too strong-willed; the doctor then makes him completely fearless, leading to his almost getting killed — not only by the tornado, but also the Fonz.
  • From 30 Rock:
    Lemon: Pete, no. I listened to you when you wanted to take the staff to that R-rated hypnotist, and that sucked.
    Pete: It was pretty bad. Nutmeg.
    [Lemon stands up like a zombie and starts to pull up her shirt.]
    Pete: Aaaah!! Rodeo rodeo rodeo!
    [Lemon stops stripping and looks around in confusion.]
  • Urkel on Family Matters stated to a therapist that he cannot be hypnotized. All the therapist had to do was show him a pocket watch, and he was immediately under.
  • In one episode of The Odd Couple (1970), Felix confidently declares that he's immune because "persons of superior intellect cannot be hypnotized". After he goes under and Oscar asks what happened, the hypnotist jokes, "Since his intellect is too strong for hypnosis... he must be dead!"
  • Subverted in an episode of Perfect Strangers, where Larry claims he can't be hypnotized and — after briefly faking out the hypnotist — turns out to be right. Of course, poor Balki standing next to him was a little more susceptible.
  • This was recycled from an episode of The Dick Van Dyke Show, where the genuinely un-hypnotizable Buddy briefly fakes being hypnotized while Rob, in the other room, accidentally goes under for real.
  • NTSF:SD:SUV::: There's a cameo by a character known as "The Mental Man" (a parody of The Mentalist), who assists the team with his psychic powers. Trent Hauser calls him a Phony Psychic and claims to be impervious to being hypnotized, but is then made to think he is a dog.
  • The Flash (2014): A hypnotherapist does this to Ralph Dibny to jog his memory of the bus accident that resulted in a new crop of metahumans (including himself). Before he went under, Barry and Iris were sitting on either side of him. When he snapped out of it, they were sitting next to the therapist.
    Ralph(coming to): This hocus pocus is never gonna work on me, but we can try it if you did you get over there?
  • The Greatest American Hero: Bill Maxwell sees himself as a hardened, tough as nails FBI agent and, as such, impervious to any attempts to be hypnotized, but he gets in trance just by listening a stage hypnotist condition another person. What's funnier, the trigger is a word Bill uses constantly to the chagrin of Ralph and Pam, scenario, so after Bill wakes from the trance, they say several phrases with the trigger just for fun. It turns out that Bill was so thoroughly conditioned that he falls in trance even when he says the word himself.

    Newspaper Comics 
  • One arc in Big Nate centered around Nate trying to cure his pigpen habits with hypnosis. He claims that it won't work at first because his mind is too sharp...and immediately goes into a trance-induced sleep when someone snaps their fingers in front of him.

    Video Games 
  • The Mass Effect series:
    • There are many characters, of various levels of intelligence and willpower, who believe they will be safe from the effects of Reaper Indoctrination. Often, they take some kind of precaution against it, and think that this precaution will stop them succumbing. By the end of the series absolutely nobody has has been able to resist the effect once they are exposed to it, and the most that any indoctrinated character can manage is to commit suicide, and even that requires an extremely strong will and a lot of encouragement from Magnetic Hero Shepard to make them realise they've succumbed and break free for just a short while.
    • Only one character is shown to actually recover from Indoctrinationif you spare her. And even then it's only possible because a second Eldritch Abomination overwrites it with its own version, which wears off after it dies.
    • Shepard him/herself can run afoul of this trope depending on how one has role-played in Mass Effect 2 during Samara's Loyalty Mission. Acting as the bait for Morinth, Shepard will be given three conversation prompts as Morinth attempts to assert power over Shepard's mind. The first two are fairly reasonable reputation checks that let Shepard blithely ignore Morinth's attempts to manipulate their thoughts, but when Morinth gets serious, the third prompt hits you with one of the two most difficult reputation checks in the game; a Shepard that does this mission early or was mixing Paragon and Renegade options will likely be stunned by Morinth before Samara bursts in to save them. A very powerful Paragon or Renegade, however, can avert this by being too badass for Morinth's mind-trick to have any power.
  • Happens to the player in one side mission in Assassin's Creed Syndicate. Evie is investigating a series of incidents where apparently law-abiding people suddenly committed crimes claiming no memory of what happened, and eventually tracks down a mesmerist who is hypnotizing ordinary people to steal and bring him the loot. Evie is dismissive that he has such skill, and the player probably thinks that of course the badass assassin they're currently controlling will easily take care of this crimin-...why did the screen just fade to black, and when it comes back, why is Evie sitting in a police cell with utterly no idea why she's there, what she was previously doing, or that she was investigating anything at all?

    Web Animation 

  • In a segment of RWBY Chibi, Ruby attempts to hypnotize Weiss to be her BFF and wear matching outfits with her by talking to her in her sleep. She’s successful in not only doing this to Weiss, but Yang as well. Cue Blake commenting on how weak-willed they are before it’s revealed that she’s wearing a matching outfit as well...

    Western Animation 

  • In the Looney Tunes short "The Hare-Brained Hypnotist", Elmer Fudd uses a book on psychology to learn hypnosis and attempts to use it on Bugs Bunny. While Bugs turns the table on him, they eventually start shooting hypnosis beam things at each other until Elmer runs away, leading to this line:
    Bugs: How's about that, thinkin' he could hypnotize me! Ha! [looks at watch] Ooh, I'm overdue at the airport! [jumps into the sky and starts flying] I'm the B-19!
  • In a Courage the Cowardly Dog episode, Courage attempts to use past-life regression hypnosis on Muriel and Eustace in order to get rid of a mummy that is coming to kill them. Eustace says that he can't be hypnotized, right before Courage ends up turning him into a monkey. When Courage ends the hypnosis, Eustace, with no memory of what just happened, smugly says, "Told ya, can't be hypnotized."
  • In The Fairly OddParents! episode "Crocker Shocker", when Crocker's therapist decided to hypnotize him, Crocker fell asleep in the middle of the bragging.
  • The Garfield Show: Garfield also fell asleep during his bragging. Jon claimed Garfield falling asleep was news to him.
  • In a U.S. Acres segment of Garfield and Friends, Orson attempts to hypnotize Wade into being extremely brave. Wade claims he's too smart to be hypnotized, but goes under in the middle of his claim, and continues it after he wakes up, even though it's succeeded.
  • In the Ben 10 episode with the evil hypnotist, Ben thinks that only someone with 'half a brain' could be hypnotized. Gwen volunteers him, and sure enough, the hypnotism works.
  • In the Recess episode "The Hypnotist" Principal Prickly falls victim to this despite not being the intended target.
  • Star vs. the Forces of Evil: In "Deep Dive", Janna offers to hypnotize Star to get to the bottom of her acting out in her sleep. Marco dismisses hypnotism as nonsense, but Janna reveals she had already hypnotized Marco so that he falls asleep when she says, "Chicken Butt".
  • Beetlejuice: BJ has gone on record saying that he is perfectly immune to hypnosis...only for him to fall under numerous times throughout the series.
  • DC Super Hero Girls 2019: Inverted in the episode "Anger Management". Zatanna states that hypnotizing someone isn't easy, only to then be proved false by Jessica hypnotizing Supergirl in a matter of seconds.

    Real Life 
  • In her 11/23/14 Parade magazine column answering a reader's question about hypnotism, Marilyn vos Savant states "People who can be hypnotized — not everyone can be hypnotized, among them yours truly— ...." Unknown if she's merely bragging or if she did indeed once give someone a fair shot at putting her under.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Hypnotism Cut, You Cant Hypnotize Me



Mr. Crocker brags about having immunity to hypnosis, but him falling asleep proves otherwise.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (10 votes)

Example of:

Main / MoreHypnotizableThanHeThinks

Media sources: