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Stupid Good

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"Um, I'm just wondering if it's OK if I hold you down against your will for a little bit?"

More than a few people have recognized the Fridge Logic in the behavior of the average Lawful Stupid character. After all, smiting someone merely because your magic radar told you he was evil seems more sociopathic than heroic to many. Someone can be evil without being a threat; maybe they're just out shopping or playing a friendly game, or dream of ruling the world, but don't necessarily want to harm anyone, or are working on their good-impairement issues as a regular in the local Monsters Anonymous meetings. In order to avoid this, however, some people take things too far to the other side, resulting in the All-Loving Hero taken to its illogical extreme.

The Stupid Good character is "good" to the point of being unable to comprehend that someone else might be bad. As such, they're a Friend to All Living Things, unliving things, and things that ought not live. In short, goodness without using any sense of proportion.

This often extends to such utter pacifism that they refuse to kill, attack or even defend themselves from anything. While most people would flee or fight back when faced with a foe which cannot be reasoned with, this person will attempt to talk down the enemy even as they're charging with swords drawn, howling for their heads, and if they do fight, they will make sure to get the guy healed afterwards.

It also often means extreme gullibility. A Stupid Good character will spare the villain if he pleads, no matter how obvious it is that they intend to return to villainy. After all, forgiveness is a good thing, right?

This is the kind of person who would attempt to convince the devil himself that his evil crusade is wrong and that he and his good counterpart should resolve their differences with a kind word and a handshake. It is difficult, if not impossible to reason with hardened criminals or terrorists of any sort (at least, in most cases, without a credible threat of force that this sort of personality would naturally be unwilling to provide), both in reality and in fantasy. It gets even more ridiculous when one tries negotiating with entities whose goals include the conquest/destruction/domination of the world, or pure manifestations of evil. Yet the Stupid Good character attempts to convert the villain to the side of good using The Power of Friendship anyway — cue everyone complaining when the predictable bloodbath ensues.

The other players often see this kind of character as a nuisance, especially when they just want to crack some heads and the Stupid Good character won't let them because the character doesn't want to make orphans of the "cute little baby orcs". Such a player may be bringing too much of a rigid stance into an action-adventure series where creatures can be Always Chaotic Evil, and thus may be ruining the other players' fun. They don't want to have a huge moral quandary on their hands every time enemies attack.

Suffice to say, this isn't really the intended way to play a paladin either (though the Book of Exalted Deeds did provide vows of non-violence for those who wanted to play a pacifist character). The Book of Exalted Deeds didn't provide so much advice for these players (indeed, they left a paladin to choose between "destroying evil and honoring love" when said love was between two Always Chaotic Evil succubi), but they did indicate a good character could ask "How big is that dragon, and does it have any friends?" with an eye towards knowing if they stand a chance at all. Guess Wizards of the Coast thought it was more important to avoid being Miko Miyazaki than it was to avoid being Piffany.

In some settings, however, Stupid Good behavior may actually work — though these settings also tend to be so high on the idealistic end of the Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism that they crap sunshine and puke rainbows. The Purity Sue also has a tendency to convert any villain — no matter how loathsome — to the side of Light.

This approach can even work on occasion in more cynical works, but in a completely different way: A character may turn out to be a Fluffy Tamer, befriending things that have been assumed to be Always Chaotic Evil, but are actually Reluctant Monsters or Non Malicious Monsters responding to violence with violence. In truly cynical works, this may still actually work, but go horribly right: the monster may be so taken with the Stupid Good character that it decides to give him a hug, the Gentle Giant may be a Lethal Klutz, or they may discover that Nature Is Not Nice when one of their new friends eats another new friend. Arguably the darkest variant is when Hands Off My Fluffy! crosses paths with a crowd carrying Torches and Pitchforks chanting Burn the Witch!.

One fairly awesome way that a Stupid Good Fluffy Tamer can be played completely straight even in the most cynical of works with little to no narm, however, is by a pairing that results in a Badass and Child Duo. In a Death World, this is typically the only way a child or equivalently naive character could plausibly survive, and the mere existence of a Wide-Eyed Idealist can be enough to rouse an antihero into a Knight in Sour Armor, devoting themselves to the preservation of this innocence.

If becoming good results in Stupid Good, see Hero Ball.

Despite the implications, not actually related to Dumb Is Good, which is where a lack of intelligence means a person is innately inclined to be good, as opposed to taking Good to such extremes as to act in a stupid manner (so this is more along the lines of Good Is Dumb). Not be confused with the implications with the Kindhearted Simpleton (whose level of stupidity and gullibility mixed with their compassion and goodness can relate, except that the Kindhearted Simpleton is thoroughly kind to the point that it redeems their acts of stupidity instead of having perpetual kindness as a flaw.)

Not necessarily a perfect mirror to Stupid Evil. Many fictional characters (and real people) see good as being worthy of pursuit for its own sake, even when it seems illogical; evil characters are expected to place self-interest above the desire to merely be perceived as "evil". After all, part of being evil is not caring about what other people think about you (in most cases). However, there is no universal agreed-upon-by-everyone "good" or "bad".

Supertrope to Overly Generous Fool. Compare Honor Before Reason.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Bleach:
    • Orihime, oh Orihime... Your heart is always in the right place: you want to save your friends, those arrancar were hurt and one was even killed because of you, and you can't just sit back and let your friends get hurt for your sake. But honey, maybe you should use the brain that we know you have in there and think: your friends have already displayed their rescue fetishes, those arrancar were trying to kill you and one was still hitting you while you were healing her, and Aizen is a Magnificent Bastard who has probably planned for you to do all of that (and you know it, heck, you lampshaded it after he showed you the Hogyoku)!
    • There's also the protagonist Ichigo, with his habit of sparing and even saving the enemies who try to kill him. As an example of how bad Ichigo can be with this, after waking up from his Hollow-side taking over, he saw that Ulquiorra, an already viciously powerful opponent, had been dismembered by his outburst. His logical reaction was to offer that Ichigo could injure himself to an equal extent to have a fair fight with him. The Ulquiorra incident is particularly bad because Ulquiorra demonstrates that he has the ability to regenerate limbs... Yeah, it wasn't a smart time for him. Granted, Ulquiorra was currently suffering from a fatal wound regardless, but Ichigo wasn't aware of that at the time he made the offer.
  • Code Geass:
    • Suzaku has an instance of this, by offering to consider Ashford a neutral place for himself and his bitter rival, Kallen, even going so far as to not mention her illegal actions to his superiors. It doesn't go poorly, but he only barely avoids a violent confrontation.
    • His opinion of Britannia falls into this. He believes that the wrong means will not lead to anything good... despite the fact that Britannia conquered Japan with those means, and control the Japanese citizens through those means. He thinks that by joining them, he could change it for the better. Yeah, that turned out well.
  • Dragon Ball: Son Goku, who along with his childlike naivete, is notorious for his desire to get stronger and have fair and challenging fights, even it puts his friends, his family, and the entire world at risk. Stand-out examples include believing Raditz when he begs for mercy and letting go of his tail even though he's just lying to save his own skin, letting Vegeta live after he had Nappa kill several people (including some of Goku's friends) and tried to conquer the planet because he sees Vegeta as a Worthy Opponent and wants to fight him again, healing Cell with a Senzu bean to make his fight with Gohan more fair, and convincing Zeno to hold the Tournament of Power even though the losing universes get destroyed. Zeno was planning on destroying all the universes, so this actually gave them a fighting chance, but no one knew that.
  • Weed from Ginga Densetsu Weed sticks himself with an extreme "killing as a last resort" ideology, which tend to do him bad more than good due to the Crapsack World he's living in. He's willing to sack his own men for not complying to his order, while the spared villains rarely have a change of heart. Weed's idea, while being praised as a better way of living, is also criticized for being incredibly naive.
  • Kinnikuman: The titular hero blunders into being Stupid Good a number of times. Some instances it's acceptable, like in the Throne arc when Kinnikuman Super Phoenix deliberately kills his subordinates who have become useless to him. Other times, like saying Warsman was the "better man" throughout their whole fight in spite of blatant cheating and nearly killing him, are not so acceptable.
  • Yuuri from Kyo Kara Maoh! falls into this category. Even if the series is on the idealistic side, it doesn't change the fact that he forgives EVERYBODY (including traitors) and is willing to give the villains a second chance along with sparing him. It gives his friends a huge headache.
  • Kio Asuno from Mobile Suit Gundam Age. The kid already is rarely able to hold his own, but his sudden pacifistic attitude makes things worse. He now more or less cares more about the enemies than his wingmates; his stubbornness causes him problems with his commanders; his ideal doesn't work against ace pilots; he's still beaten senseless at times; finally, it's only Deus ex Machina that allows him to have any legitimate high moral ground among Diva's crew.
  • Naruto. He considers Sasuke his friend and insists on trying to save him when it's blatantly obvious that Sasuke does not want to be saved, and later on snapped and wasted no time Jumping Off the Slippery Slope. When he finally does get through to Sasuke, it's only after Sasuke has tried to take over the world (in a misguided attempt to save it) and they've beaten each other so badly that they both lost an arm.
  • In the Sailor Moon anime, Sailor Moon actually offers the Big Bad of Sailor Moon S the MacGuffin she wanted all along to destroy the world because she refuses to sacrifice anyone. The show actually acknowledges how dangerous this gambit was when two of the Sailors, who were less than thrilled with the world coming so close to assured destruction, attacked her after the battles were over as a Secret Test of Character. In Sailor Stars, she does the same thing for that series' Big Bad, though by the time she actually has to confront her, it is after the Big Bad has killed her entire Sailor Team in combat. It actually works in her universe, but had it been slightly less on the idealistic side of the Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism, she would have just pointlessly died and failed to save the world in the process.
  • Vash from Trigun ventures into Stupid Good territory. He's absolutely iron-willed in his conviction to never kill anyone, even if they're coming at him in droves with guns blazing. However, Vash is a deconstruction of Stupid Good, seeing as how the series plays Vash's Stupid Good tendencies for drama and shows their realistic consequences. Vash suffers rather heavily to save people without hurting others to the point that when you see his bare chest, it is almost all either scar tissue or metal braces holding it together. He had plenty of opportunities to save many lives by ending a few, but always chose to resolve conflicts peacefully. Being forced to confront that choice when it concerned people that he knew personally was what finally broke him. Vash was caught in a Sadistic Choice by a bad guy between letting his friends die a pointless death from being killed by innocents that the bad guy was controlling, or killing the villain but stopping the murders from happening. Eventually, Vash pulls the trigger and kills the bad guy. However, having to do this in spite of the nightmare of circumstances that led to it still haunts Vash for the rest of the series. Even at his lowest point, when faced with an enemy he simply can't defeat, mentioned above, he never gives up his ideals, but he does realize by the end that there are some forces he cannot overcome and he can't be everywhere at once, the last scene of the anime is him basically accepting this fact and moving on to try and live a more reasonable life.
  • The kirin of The Twelve Kingdoms are uniformly Stupid Good, but this is an accepted fact in-universe: as the kirin are supernatural creatures of mercy, it's something that is hardwired in their nature, and one of a ruler's most important challenges is learning when to ignore the advice of his kirin since a kingdom cannot be ruled on compassion alone.

    Comic Books 
  • This applied to many superheroes in the Silver Age. When Superdickery wasn't in effect.
  • Because of his refusal to kill villains, and especially the fact he often saves villain from death (sometimes even allowing them or others the opportunity to escape), many readers have accused Batman of falling under this trope. Mainly because whenever he sends villains (especially The Joker) to jail or Arkham, they always break out and go back to their old ways over and over again while they continue to make Gotham the dangerous place it's always been to live in. And yet Bruce, along with his sidekicks, still can't bring themselves to kill him or at least let someone else do it.
    • As a counterargument to this, many others have argued that Gotham's official law enforcement falls under this even more and that dozens of authority figures should be held accountable before even beginning to look at the volunteering vigilante. With Batman, there at least exists the excuse that he doesn't want one vigilante to take the role of Judge, Jury, and Executioner, and that the whole point of his crusade is to support law enforcement, not supplant it. With Gotham's official authorities, however, there exists no excuse why Joker hasn't been shot to death by cops (or some bystander sick of his shenanigans), declared accountable for his actions by a legal psychiatrist (he clearly knows what he's doing is wrong), or just plain given the death sentence by a judge yet. Possible corruption isn't even a part of it, as Joker doesn't seem to be wielding any significant clout. During No Man's Land, a storyline where Gotham becomes ravaged by an earthquake and is declared legally lawless and no longer part of the U.S., James Gordon actually has the Joker at gunpoint, after the latter killed his wife, and still chooses to just kneecap him rather than finally doing what needs to be done, no laws holding him back in this one instance and with Batman outright declaring that he wouldn't stop Gordon.
    • Batman has at least offered a somewhat reasonable justification for his "no-kill" rule. Batman isn't exactly the most stable of individuals, often being depicted as being just as or more insane than the people he fights, a fact he's painfully aware of. He knows that killing some of his foes would probably solve a lot of problems, but he also knows that if he starts killing people then he can't be trusted to know when to stop.
  • The Guardians of the Universe from the Green Lantern franchise waffle between this and Lawful Stupid; although they are successful in creating the Green Lantern Corps, many of their other decision are the cause of most of their problems (like the Man Hunters, or Sinestro), and they tend to be too busy arguing with each other and their own Lanterns, that they take forever to decide on a proper solution.

    Fan Works 
  • In Acceleration, Dean/Gallant's insistence that Taylor should behave more heroically only succeeds in annoying her and later makes her hesitate in striking the killing blow against Lung, allowing him to grow stronger and cause significant collateral damage before she managed to stop him.
  • In Curse of the DualShock, Chase "used the cursed controller out of Stupidity and trapped the 9 pups in their console, setting off the events of the story".
  • Tirion Fordring in Frostblood straddles the line between Stupid Good and Lawful Stupid. Being a paladin, he abhors Jaina's decision to learn necromancy despite her reasonable explanation that she needs to learn about her new powers to control them. Worse yet is his readiness to execute Jaina for "killing a man on holy ground", ignoring that said man was a ghoul who was being destroyed just by being on holy ground and the vessel for Ner'zhul.
  • In The Havoc Side of the Force, after Harry Potter saves over a hundred slaves from the Hutts, he's absolutely pissed to be outed as such in the middle of the throne room despite his efforts to remain anonymous. Padme insists no one there would sell him out and that she trusts all of them implicitly. Even worse, afterwards, Padme tells Palpatine this but asks him to keep it a secret. Naturally, Palpatine forwards this information to said Hutts, resulting in Harry being attacked before he even arrives at his next destination.
  • Played with in The Keys Stand Alone. A lot of people think the four are Stupid Good because they won't harm monsters and evil creatures (and actually save them once in a while), but there's a big difference between Stupid Good and Actual Pacifists, especially since they're the Only Sane Men in the world and don't want to be there at all and can't support genocide on either side. Besides, they're perfectly willing to restrain, knock out, mind control, and otherwise find creative nonlethal solutions to the problem of evil. Case in point: George realizes he can get the Tayhil race to stop waging war on humans by becoming a Leader Tayhil, since the lower orders are genetically obliged to obey Leader Tayhil to the point of mindless death. In theory it might work, and George is the only one capable of enacting his proposed plan, but he notes that there's so much magic and high tech floating around that there must be other ways of becoming Leader Tayhil. Everyone else has refused on the claim that they already thought of it and discarded the idea.
  • In Leader of Men, the Dementors were breeding out of control, and in response, Hermione joined a group called the Peacekeepers which believed that they could be negotiated with. She soundly deplored Harry's resistance group's more successful tactics, even though people were getting themselves Kissed in the attempt to destroy the soul-sucking little fiends. Even after they finally won, Hermione commented that it was pure genocide, which prompted Harry to snap that maybe she should've talked to the Dementors about not killing them.
  • Harry Potter in To the Waters and the Wild. He was raised in the woods by rebel fairies and grew up learning how to talk to animals and trees and he just wants to befriend everyone he meets, even trolls, giant spiders, and Dark Lords... though since Harry has learned faerie magic, he is powerful enough to get away with it.
    "I will eat you up! I will eat... I will rip.. Tear..."
    "Oh, are you hungry, then?" Harry reached out and petted the hard greenish scales gently. "That's not surprising, actually. It's got to be hard to find enough food when you are this size..."
    "I will eat you!" insisted the serpent.
    Harry had to laugh. "Oh, no, Mr. Basilisk, I'm not food. And neither is Tom, of course. But if you hang on a minute, I'll find you some sausages or something — the Slytherin boys always sneak some up to the common room with them after lunch. Ron always seems to get hungry in the late afternoon, and Crabbe and Goyle as well. Oh, but I do have an apple in my pocket." Harry produced the apple and handed it to the poor snake. The apple looked ridiculously tiny compared to the vast green serpent.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Ironically enough, Satan himself (as his human alter ego John Milton) depicts himself as this in The Devil's Advocate. Claiming that God Is Evil because he cruelly tempts human beings and then punishes them when they can't resist, Satan declares himself "the last humanist" because he accepts human beings despite all their flaws. It is difficult to judge whether Satan is outright lying or has talked himself into believing his own lie, but in either case, he should know that — especially when it comes to sin — tolerance isn't always a virtue. Unless he's right.
  • Subverted in the movie Dogville — after being insanely passive for the entire movie, Grace shows that it was a very irrational philosophy that led her to this which included treating everyone else as not responsible for their choices and finally comes to the conclusion that their responsibility as human beings cannot be denied any longer and that arson is a more appropriate reaction than turning the other cheek.
  • Forrest Gump: Sometimes, Forrest Gump's efforts at actively opposing evil come off as this trope. For example, when he sees Jenny getting groped while playing folk music at a strip club, Forrest angrily attacks her tormentors — and Jenny herself tells him off for spoiling the performance.
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home happens because both Doctor Strange and Spider-Man screw up - the former starts doing a memory-erasing spell (to make people forget Peter Parker is Spider-Man) without properly communicate the details of it beforehand, and the later starts remembering people who shouldn't forget and his tampering mucks up the ritual. As a result, five Spider-Man adversaries from other universes show up - three attack Peter on sight, one turns on him when he notices it's not the Spider-Man he knows, and the last one shows animosity as well. Strange wants to simply send everyone back. Peter is revolted that three of the villains are fated to die and opts against returning them to their worlds, even though they were never supposed to be there and are hostile towards him. This sudden burst of morality makes him fight Strange and strand him away so Peter can try to save the villains. And it costs him everything.
  • In Street Fighter, Zangief is this, and hilariously so. He believes in friendship, loyalty, honor, fighting for freedom and peace, and saving the world, and ends up working for the villains because he actually believes General M. Bison's insane A God Am I complex and takes his psychotic rants purely at face value. It takes him all of about a second to turn face and save the lives of about half the main cast once Deejay spells it out to him that he's an idiot and Bison is the enemy of freedom and peace, not the A.N.
    Bison: But why? Why do they still call me a warlord? And mad?! All I want to do, is to create the perfect genetic soldier! Not for power, not for evil, but for good. Carlos Blanka will be the first of many, they shall march out of my laboratory! And sweep away every adversary! EVERY CREED! EVERY NATION!!! Until the very planet is in the loving grip of the Pax Bisonica. And then peace will reign in the world, and all humanity shall bow to me, in humble gratitude.
    Zangief (Brought to tears): That was beautiful...
  • In the movie Sunshine, a spaceship is trying to reach the Sun (which is extinguishing) to detonate an uber-nuke into it (don't ask) and reactivate it. After a dramatic incident, it turns out there isn't enough oxygen for the crew to survive and complete the mission. The solution would be to kill one of them, who has gone insane — with his death, they would spare enough oxygen to complete their task. The female protagonist, Cassie, takes the moral high ground and refuses to give her consent to the killing. Keep in mind that not only it was the sacrifice of one person versus the destruction of Earth and of the whole human race on it, but that they were all going to die anyway since they had no chance to go back to Earth, whether they completed the mission or not.
  • The Third Saturday In October Part V: Played for comedy. After implacable slasher villain Jack is finally defeated, we cut to Jack getting wheeled down a hospital hallway right alongside Final Girl Maggie, with the resident doctor insisting that he try to save the unstoppable killing machine as Plucky Girl PJ ineffectually protests.

  • In some versions of the famous "The Scorpion and the Frog" tale, the frog is depicted as this rather than the scorpion being Stupid Evil. The frog knew beforehand that the scorpion was dangerous and untrustworthy but let the scorpion ride on him anyways. The kicker is that the scorpion knew how to swim and didn't need the frog in the first place; he was just exploiting the frog's overly altruistic nature to kill his hated enemy.

  • Subverted in one of Fred Saberhagen's Berserker short stories. Everyone tells the main character he's being stupid by trying to talk with the Berserker that's approaching the planet he lives on because Berserker are giant automated spaceships programmed to destroy all life and you can't argue with the pre-programmed directive of a machine. The Berserker does agree to talk, which is consistent with other stories in which they try to study humans so they can learn how to destroy them more effectively. During the conversation, the Berserker asks the man for a cell sample, which he provides. Eventually, the Berserker says it's going to leave to consider his arguments some more and offers the man a gift, which he accepts. After the Berserker leaves, other people, fearing an obvious Trojan Horse, ask him about the "gift". The last line of the story provides the twist ending: "I think it's killing off my cancer."
  • The Wild Turkeys in The Book of the Dun Cow are friendly to a fault but are too stupid to understand danger until it is too late. Because of this, they all die en masse.
  • Averted by the main character in Elizabeth Moon's The Deed of Paksenarrion, which was written explicitly as a guide to being a Paladin without being Lawful Stupid, because the author was tired of constantly running into Lawful Stupid paladins at conventions.
  • In Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Rowley Jefferson is one if not the nicest character in the stories, but also one of the dumbest.
  • Carrot Ironfoundersson, Captain of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch in Terry Pratchett's Discworld series, often appears to be this way; in fact, were he anyone else, he would be this way. But because he happens to be the lost One True King of Ankh, his natural innate charisma means people tend to behave toward him as he expects them to, whether they intended to or not.
  • Played with in The Dresden Files about the Knights of the Cross:
    • On the one hand, their complete refusal to compromise even slightly on their principles would almost certainly have caused disaster for innocent people if Harry himself hadn't been more willing to be an Anti-Hero; in Death Masks they threaten to kill a millennia-old sorcerer who is in a Willing Channeler Symbiotic Possession with a Fallen Angel unless he gives them information that would save literally millions of people from a magic-powered plague. However, as soon as the man in question relinquishes the Artifact of Doom containing the angel, they immediately withdraw, despite it being clear to everyone (including them) that the man is evil even without the influence of the angel, and they would have left without the apocalypse-averting information rather than interfere in the man's (to all intents and purposes nonexistent) chance to seek redemption had Harry not beaten the information out of him.
    • On the other hand, they are prevented from falling firmly into this trope for two reasons; one, in the above example, Harry totally refutes the villain's assertions that they are too "weak" to do the pragmatic thing, since he is fully aware that it takes enormous personal strength to be so dedicated, and he greatly admires them for it even in the midst of his exasperation. Two, it is explicitly confirmed and proven that the knights have a Bargain with Heaven that works through Contrived Coincidence, and consequently nothing too terrible has ever come of them sticking to their principles, even if it takes something spectacularly improbable (or Harry's willingness to do the dirty work) to make things turn out mostly OK.
  • Pharoah Akhnaton in The Egyptian. He attempts to disband the army, confiscates the land of the priests of Ammon, causing them to curse it, distributes it to the poor without regard for whether or not they know how to farm and then when the Syrians revolt and the Hittites invade wants to bankrupt what little of the treasury is left to buy them off despite being told by several sources that this will only convince them of Egypt's weakness and encourage their invasion.
  • In one of C. S. Forester's Horatio Hornblower novels, Hornblower can save his ship only by lying to a French officer that Napoleon has recently died. To make the enemy believe him, Hornblower has to support the lie by taking an oath on his honor as an officer. He plans to resign his commission in disgrace at the next port because he has permanently dishonored himself. Fortunately for him, he finds out, by Jove, Napoleon really IS dead, so the lie was the truth all along. In Forester's defense, he conveys the standards of that culture so vividly that the reader can believe in Hornblower's scruples. This incident subverts the Stupid Good trope on a couple levels. Hornblower is arguably being "stupid good" in that he expects his enemies to completely ditch their plan solely because Hornblower gives his sworn word. However, he's not being "stupid" because they do take his word, and he's not being "good" because his actions are utterly shameful in his culture.
  • In Romance of the Three Kingdoms. Liu Bei. Worse yet, he combines it with Values Dissonance. And he's the main protagonist for at least the first half of the book, people.
  • The Valar in The Silmarillion. They're unable to comprehend that Morgoth is evil and especially that he is irredeemably, permanently evil, and believe him instantly when he claims to be reformed, only to have it blow up in their faces quite spectacularly later on.
    • Not really all the Valar (Varda, for example, caught on to Morgoth’s wickedness early on and never liked him, and Tulkas vocally opposed giving Morgoth a second chance) but specifically Manwë, whom it was said had a limited understanding of evil because he was so close to Eru, and the rest of the Valar sort of had to go along with his greater authority. It's also said that because they swore to let him out, they then had to do so.
  • Sisterhood Series by Fern Michaels: Averted for the most part. Subverted, however, in Lethal Justice. Alexis Thorne a.k.a. Sara Whittier goes to see Arden Gillespie and Roland Sullivan after they have been caught embezzling and are soon to be arrested. She offers them some wine and tells them that she forgives them for framing her for their crimes and ruining her life. However, after Roland and Arden drink the wine, when asked why she's not drinking, Alexis reveals that she doctored the wine with tranquilizers and states that she's not stupid! Yep, she was just pretending to be Stupid Good just to get them to let their guards down! She follows it up by having a tattoo artist put "BASTARD" on Roland's forehead, "BITCH" on Arden's forehead, and tattoo Arden's body with snakes.
  • In general, it's safe to say that A Song of Ice and Fire isn't kind to any who entertain the notion of being really, really nice people before engaging either their brain or general-purpose cynicism. Whichever.
    • Eddard Stark is bound by an inflexible code of honor. It isn't as irksome in the otherwise Crapsack World as one might expect. His flaw isn't his code of honor, but his belief that other people are better or more honest than they actually are and that they can be shamed into doing the right thing; he's willing to do the right thing, no matter how hard that may actually be.
    • His son, on the other hand, falls into this category towards the end.
    • Roose Bolton's legitimate son Domeric was an earnest and kind soul, who ended up being killed by his sadistic bastard brother Ramsay because he believed they could be best friends if they just got to know each other. In Domeric's defense, this was some time before Ramsay acquired his reputation.
    • Lord Edmure Tully is also a prime example: he rushes out and repeatedly gets himself into boiling hot water when it comes to longer-term strategy, for all he can pull wonders off tactically and in the very short term. He just can't hang back and watch his people get hurt in a bid for longer-term or multiple-step solutions. Or, can't bear the thought of the smallfolk having nowhere to find safety while he is fine behind thick walls. Accepting more mouths to feed when you're facing a castle-siege is... really nice, but not very wise.
      • Of course, this is only the case in-universe. In real life, protecting the peasants was the whole point of having a huge castle with thick walls. After all, if the besieging enemy kills all your peasants, then who's going to farm your lands?
  • Star Wars Expanded Universe: Mon Mothma is so utterly determined to restore the former Republic exactly as it had been (i.e. utterly dysfunctional) that she basically writes the New Republic constitution so that the reformed Senate immediately becomes a Not-So-Omniscient Council of Bickering out of her desire to try and prevent anyone from ever again seizing power the way Palpatine did.
  • Star Wars Legends: To be honest, the New Republic and Luke Skywalker's Jedi Order have fallen victim to this. The trilogy that introduced Natasi "I Satan" Daala and Kyp Durron is particularly notable for this. Mon Mothma tried to negotiate peace between the New Republic and the Empire with Ambassador Furgen, who made it no secret that he was pure evil. In fact, he throws his drink in her face and says that there will never be peace between the two governments. Then it turned out later that the drink contained nanobots that were destroying her from the inside out! You would think Mon Mothma would have had more common sense by this point in time, but apparently not. Then there is the matter of Kyp Durron going around blowing up solar systems containing Imperial citizens with the Sun Crusher. Mon Mothma and her council know what he has done, but instead of punishing him, they hand him over to Luke Skywalker, who welcomes him back with open arms. Several characters were more than happy to point that this is not how life works, and Kyp now has the pleasure of never hearing the end of it for the rest of his life!
    • The New Rebellion has a character named Femon reveal in her thoughts that she considers the New Republic too weak. She feels that the NR is too lenient with its enemies by practically never punishing them for their crimes. Femon is The Dragon to Big Bad Kueller/Dolph (think Adolf Hitler), who is Putting on the Reich, and she turns on him because she perceives that he has fallen to the same weakness as the NR, and he kills her for turning on him. On one side, this seems to say that everything she thinks is supposed to be dismissed and blown off. On the other side, this qualifies as Strawman Has a Point, because the NR has done more reacting than acting.
    • Indeed, it is remarkable that the NR lasted for around 30 years living on this trope! At least the Yuuzhan Vong series did one thing right, and that was to tear this trope into tiny shreds!
  • The eighth book of the Sword of Truth series features a culture of people that are so Stupid Good that they won't even defend themselves when The Empire invades and starts with the evaile. When the Designated Hero shows up, some of them even serve as willing human shields for the Bad Guys, because war is bad, mmkay? Too Dumb to Live doesn't even begin to cover it.
  • Mackenzie the half-demon, from Tales of MU, because of demons being stereotyped as Stupid Evil. She's getting better, though.
  • In 20 Years After, while on the run from the Queen (who wants to throw them in the Bastille), Athos learns that d'Artagnan and Porthos have already been captured. His response is to go to the Queen and ask her to release them, which — surprise, surprise — leads to him being imprisoned too. (And that's not even mentioning the times he stops his friends from killing the villain.)
  • Eve Forward's Villains by Necessity has the Balance Between Good and Evil central to its plot — if it's not maintained, the world will be sublimated into either a big light blur or a big dark blur with a possible domino effect for other worlds — but supports this mostly by populating the side of Good with Lawful Stupid Knights Templar, with some Stupid Good lackeys for variety. This has the unfortunate effect of undermining the premise, since the "good" antagonists really aren't particularly good people, and the "evil" protagonists mostly aren't particularly evil either. Notably, one such Stupid Good lackey, the centaur bard Robin, eventually clues in and performs a Face–Heel Turn to side with the "evil" protagonists, and the Black Knight called Blackmail turns out to be a legendary paladin who has sided with the protagonists for the sake of saving the world and in disgust at his former True Companions' Lawful Stupid behavior.
  • Subverted by the Tinkers in The Wheel of Time. They're incredibly strict Actual Pacifists who never commit an act of violence no matter the provocation. Not in self-defense, not in defense of each other, not in defense of little helpless bunny rabbits. The thing is, they're not stupid: they're well aware that this means that they're going to spend a lot of time running away if they're lucky, and a lot of time dying if they're not, and they stick with it anyway because they prefer it to the alternative.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In The A-Team episode "Semi-Friendly Persuasion", Karl Peerson, the leader of the Society of Man, falls into this. He runs an Amish-esque commune which is sworn to non-violence, but his community is threatened by a gang of local thugs who view them as "freaks." Karl fully intends to give in to the bullies and even openly insults the A-Team when his son calls them in, claiming their violent ways make them just as bad as the villains. He then asks them to protect his people while figuratively tying both hands behind their backs and calling them murderers and villains the whole time. Even at the end, when the actual villains have been defeated, he holds to his stance and makes it clear that he intends to leave town anyway, feeling that he can't possibly stay in his new home knowing that it was won by violence.
    Hannibal: You can build your meeting house now. You don't need us.
    Karl: Here? After this?
    Hannibal: Why not? Sykes and his buddies will be in jail for a long time. You're safe, and you earned it.
    Karl: Earned it? With all the anger and destruction and injury around us? Not even you can believe we earned it with that... Are you expecting me to thank you?
    Hannibal:, even though you're one of the most narrow-minded men I've ever met in your own way, I admire you for one thing, Karl. You don't change your tune when you win. Most people do. Did it ever occur to you where people like you would be without people like us?
    Karl: Goodbye, Colonel.
  • Subverted in the Adam West Batman (1966) when Batman seems to let the gun moll for the Minstrel go simply because she said she was going to turn over a new leaf. Even Robin is aghast at how incredibly naïve Batman (even for this version) is for doing it until Batman reveals that he placed a listening bug in her purse and let her go so she'd return to the villain's hideout.
  • Better Call Saul reveals that Jimmy and Chuck's father was this. He ran a convenience store and would hand out money and/or free merchandise to anyone with a sob story just in case it was true. In a flashback, he's shown handing an obvious scammer ten dollars out of his nearly empty register and offering the guy a free spark plug for his car. When the very young Jimmy sees through the scam and protests, his father reprimands him for daring not to believe the poor man's story. In another instance, his father spends a lot of time and effort tracking down a customer who unknowingly paid him with a collectible coin. The coin wasn't even all that rare and was only worth about $3-4 if sold to a collector. Jimmy's father seemed incapable of accepting any sort of windfall if he did not think he earned it 100% through hard work.
  • In Chernobyl, Lyudmilla Ignatenko bribes her way into the ward where her husband is slowly and horrifically dying from radiation sickness and spends days tending to and caring for him. Problem? She's pregnant and lied about it to the doctors to let them see him. Her repeated exposure to her husband's secretions caused her baby to die shortly after birth.
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Thals in the first-ever Dalek story, "The Daleks", initially refuse to fight against the Daleks in any way.
    • In "The Gunfighters", the Doctor refuses against all logic to accept that Doc Holiday isn't a thoroughly decent gentleman or is obviously trying to manipulate the Doctor into getting shot in his stead.
    • The Dulcians in "The Dominators" are more extreme than the Thals. As Actual Pacifists, they are so dedicated to pacifism that they sort of just mindlessly do whatever they're told with no resistance at all, which allows the two Dominators to enslave them to a pathetic degree. The Dulcian council is particularly bad. Despite agreeing with themselves that "pacifism is itself a course of action" before the Dominators break into their council chamber and threaten them with death, they can only pick up the Dominators on using a rude tone of voice. Rather than, say engaging in proper negotiation, instead of doing pacifistic but noble actions like sticking to their principles or protesting. (This, of course, ends horribly for them.)
    • The Doctor can veer between Lawful Stupid (wrathful Doctor) and Stupid Good (overly forgiving Doctor) on occasion, particularly in the new series. Most notably, he forgives and/or seeks to save the Master and Davros, respectively, each of them an Omnicidal Maniac. In the original series story "Logopolis" the Master destroyed most of the universe and all the people living in it. (Back then, the Doctor tended more to kill or try to kill his enemies, including, often the Master himself.) It's worth noting that those in the second group tend to be long-time recurring foes with Joker Immunity.
  • Highlander: The Series has a guy who called himself Methos (not the real Methos, played by Peter Wingfield) who wanted all Immortals to lay down their swords, embrace peace, and help little old ladies across the street at every opportunity. He didn't last through half the episode, getting decapitated by the Villain of the Week.
  • In NCIS, season 13, episode 13, Abbey's brother Luca is a prime example. He takes in a woman who "needs his help" and refuses to give her phone number, be in any pictures, or even reveal her last name.
  • Leslie Knope of Parks and Recreation seems like this much of the time. In the first season, her attempts to do good almost always backfired. She grows more savvy after that, and also has friends who are less scrupulous.
  • In Red Dwarf episode "Demons and Angels", the characters meet their good and evil duplicates. Their "high" selves are so naive and trusting that they don't realise they are being deliberately shot, stabbed, and crushed, and the High Kryten thinks a grenade is a "welcome gift".
  • Stargate SG-1: The Nox. At first, they seem to be this trope, causing the SG-1 team deep concern over the Goa'uld's desire to take over their planet. As the team goes to leave, we find the Nox are pacifists who can make things invisible, revive the dead, yet prevent any fatal violence in either direction. Suffice it to say they are also Sufficiently Advanced Aliens who make the Goa'uld look like cavemen. So they aren't exactly stupid, but they do fail to see the contradiction in how they look down on anyone who would resort to violence even in self-defence as primitive savages while keeping to themselves the technology that allows their culture to protect itself non-violently or undo the deaths caused by aggressors.
  • Subverted in the Star Trek TOS episode "Errand of Mercy". The Organians appear to fit this trope for most of the episode, but it's eventually revealed that they were powerful Energy Beings and they were just humoring the Klingons when they let them take over their planet.
    • Double subverted with Edith Keeler from "The City on the Edge of Forever". She knows who's a bad risk for her soup kitchen, but does not get that you cannot negotiate with a Hitler.
  • In the Star Trek TNG episode "Peak Performance", Jean-Luc Picard demonstrates this attitude when he disdains the idea of participating in a war simulation because he believes that Starfleet's primary role should be diplomacy and exploration. (But Jean-Luc, what are all those torpedoes and phasers for?)
    • A visiting scientist regards Picard as showing this in "Silicon Avatar," when he says that he doesn't want to attack a crystalline entity responsible for the destruction of an entire colony (where the scientist's son was killed), but instead wants to try to communicate with it as a means to prevent further attacks. As he puts it, the creature is so different and on such a larger scale than humanoids, it may just be operating an animal-like intelligence rather than malice, or unaware that these little specks it eats up are thinking, feeling beings as well. She thinks he's naïve and kills the unique entity out of vengeance.
  • Herschel in The Walking Dead who is very protective of Walkers and keeps several of them in his barn. He regards them as just "sick people". Admittedly two of them were once family members but still.
    • He's cured of the Stupid part rather quickly.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Sting's ridiculously trusting behavior. Just count how many times he's been betrayed by Lex Luger... or look at the time he actually joined the Four Horsemen, not even suspecting that the whole thing might be a set-up to destroy him despite having spent the last two years feuding with their leader, Ric Flair. This seemed to change for a while when he adopted the Crow gimmick... and then he turned around and joined up with the Wolfpac the instant they split off from the nWo. Needless to say, they punked his ass out in a few months. Right through to his run in TNA over the last few years, Sting has virtually never had an ally who did not betray him. The most recent of his betrayals came after he made a Face–Heel Turn, joining up with the Main Event Mafia to teach the young wrestlers some respect. They eventually turfed him for not being evil and greedy enough, which, to his credit, he did admit he expected.
    • It's now been epically subverted with the advent of Immortal.
    • Only for him to turn right back around and trust Bully frickin' Ray to help him lead the way in fighting back the Aces & Eights outlaw biker gang. No points for guessing who their President turned out to be.
  • Usually it is more socially acceptable in pro wrestling for the WWE Divas to exhibit Stupid Good behavior - because, well, they're women, so they're "dizzy dames" who don't know any better. Special mention must go to Maria Kanellis, who was portrayed as extremely naive from day one, but who in the summer of 2009 made a judgment call that was pretty boneheaded even for her. Dolph Ziggler (formerly "Nicky" Nemeth of the Spirit Squad) was ruthlessly tearing his way up through the midcard (after himself starting out as a Stupid Evil Naïve Newcomer who tried to shake all his opponents' hands before their matches). It was apparent to anyone with half a brain that Ziggler was self-centered, arrogant, and prepared to do whatever it took to win the Intercontinental Championship. But Maria genuinely loved him, accompanied him to all his matches, and constantly made excuses for his behavior, even insisting that his bully shtick was just part of the kayfabe act and that away from the ring he was a completely decent person - in short, a Jerk with a Heart of Gold. She even became paranoid of other Divas who tried to warn her away from Ziggler, assuming that they were jealous of her. Maria's stubborn defense of Dolph eventually put her across the ring from his opponent for the Intercontinental Championship: Rey Mysterio, WWE's ultimate babyface. Fortunately, Maria took a brief hiatus from WWE and broke off her relationship with Dolph before he could totally corrupt her.
  • John Cena came off as this a bit during his mid-2011 feud with CM Punk. John was adamant that he defend his WWE title against Punk at the next PPV, despite Punk saying he was going to leave the company at midnight, just a little bit after said PPV. Yes, Vince McMahon seemed corrupt for trying to meddle in it and suspending Punk, running parallels to the Montreal Screwjob. John got his way....and Punk won, leaving the company with the title, exactly what Vince was trying to prevent.
    • Cena also won the 2012 Money in the Bank, giving him a title shot at any time of his choosing. Almost all previous winners have cashed in their opportunity on a weakened opponent, normally after they have been through a grueling match or have suffered a beat down,note  but Cena insisted on giving the champion fair warning because he wanted the fans to see a more exciting match. He won the match... but it was by disqualification, which means he was the first to cash in the Money in the Bank Contract and fail to win the title.

    Tabletop Games 
  • In the Old World of Darkness:
    • In Werewolf: The Apocalypse, members of the Children of Gaia tribe can be Stupid Good at times. The dichotomy of peace-loving werewolves is certainly interesting, but some of these hippies would sooner talk politics over tea with the creatures they're supposed to kill. The worst part is the tribebook for the Children of Gaia seems to encourage portraying them as the hippies of Werewolf-kind with no real pragmatism to counterbalance their idealism. On the other hand, the other werewolf tribes tend to take Lawful Stupid to gory new heights. If they so much as think someone is tainted with the slightest bit of evil, GROWLSLASHKILLBITEMAIMKILLSLASH...
    • In Hunter: The Reckoning, several groups of hunters seemed to fall exclusively into the realm of Lawful Stupid (Zeal) or Stupid Good (Mercy). This was meant to refer to the extremes in philosophy of the groups.
      • Anyone with a virtue rating higher than 7 becomes incurably insane and the Vision castes are, by design, meant to guide the others in looking at the bigger picture. So the issues with the Zeal and Mercy castes are more crippling overspecialization than anything. Furthermore, anyone who does anything has some horrible retribution waiting for them anyway.
      • The Innocent Creed (the ones who believe monsters can be people, too) had problems with this. Creed Book: Innocent had a viewpoint character who tried to help a vampire with her condition. After she ripped his legs off. As you can tell, White Wolf had problems with the "hippie" classes of the old line.
  • In the New World of Darkness, pretty much everyone with a Morality above 8 probably counts, considering you can ding a Morality 9 rating by simply refusing to do a good act when presented with the opportunity, and ding a Morality 10 rating by just thinking about doing something bad.
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • The Healer class. Healing is all you can do in a game where fighting is pretty much mandatory (you can only fight undead). Nothing prevents the rest of your party from indiscriminately slaughtering everything they see, though, making Healers more "conscientious objector/Combat Medic" than "Stupid Good/completely useless".
    • The Vow of Nonviolence from the Book of Exalted Deeds forbids attacking enemies... again, much like combat medics, who forfeit their special Geneva Convention protections against being knowingly fired upon if they carry combat arms or use their sidearms (which they are allowed to carry) as weapons of offense. The Vow of Peace requires that you work to stop other people doing violence even if they're on your side. This is both a purer form of the trope and unlikely to go down well with the rest of the party.
    • Book of Exalted Deeds also profiles several godlike celestial beings, including Queen Morwel and the Court of Stars, the Chaotic Good rulers of the eladrins. One of them, Gwynarwhyf, the Whirling Fury, is the patron of Good-aligned barbarians, but one legend about her claims she showed signs of this Trope and Chaotic Stupid, claiming she tried to storm the Maw of Demogorgon and challenge the Prince of Demons (by herself). She was taken captive and survived only because Faerinaal (a more sensible member of the Court of Stars) was able to mount a successful rescue while Demogorgon's dual personality was in disagreement over the best way to torture her to death, and since then, Morwel has kept Gwynarwhyf "on a short leash". (As she says.)
  • Pathfinder inherited Paladins, but Second Edition splits them into three, Lawful, Neutral, and Chaotic champions, all of whom are Stupid Good in their own way. For instance, the Liberator is Chaotic Good, and not allowed to threaten people or demand that they change their ways. They must also demand that other people be set free if unjustly imprisoned, and attack those who won't stop being evil. Confused yet?
    • That said, while a champion is expected to operate under the dictates of their creed, the creeds aren't entirely iinflexible. For example, a Lawful Good champion has a prohibition against lying. Protecting the innocent takes a higher priority, so if they find themselves in a position where they can only keep innocents from harm by deceiving someone pursuing them, this is allowed (if not something to be done lightly).
  • The little-known Italian fantasy RPG Kata Kumbas has a playable class that is a Jesus-expy. In a game where experience is mostly gained by killing things, any player with this class forfeits ALL experience for the whole adventure if anything gets killed during the adventure itself. In other words, you lose all hope at gaining EXP if the other players kill even one of the Always Chaotic Evil monsters you encounter. Thus, this trope will come into play a lot.
  • The closest thing Warhammer 40,000 has to a good (rather than necessarily evil) faction are the Tau, who will make join-the-Greater-Good offers to other races and honestly expect them to say yes. In one particularly staggering example, one planet was under attack by Tyranids, when a Necron fleet showed and proceeded to vaporize everything. The Tau immediately sent a welcoming delegation (including an Ethereal) to the landing Necrons, who proceeded to vaporize everything.
  • Those with exceedingly-high Compassion in Exalted are urged toward this trope, especially if their Compassion isn't balanced by one of the other Virtues. In particular, uber-high Compassion forbids killing, even of... say, an all-consuming eldritch horror whose single-minded goal is to drive all of existence into the unending void. High-virtue characters can act against their Virtues (if they have enough willpower points), but if the virtue in question is the character's most prominent one, doing so can lead to a Heroic BSoD.
  • Some of the churches in The Dark Eye expect this behaviour of their followers. Members of the Rondra Church are expected to put Honour Before Reason, the Travia Church demands its followers provide shelter to everyone (though they also demand that the peace of the shelter be respected), followers of Peraine will heal everybody after a fight, and members of the Tsa Church are pure pacifists who may insist that their companions follow the same path.

  • The Red pieces from Checkmate, especially the Red Knight. The Red Knight refuses to kill the Black Queen because he has fallen for her. When he dies from her stabbing him in the back, the other Red pieces carry him off in a funeral procession, instead of protecting their incredibly vulnerable and feeble King.

    Video Games 
  • Plays heavily into the backstory of Baldur's Gate II. An elf named Jonoleth committed heinous crimes in pursuit of power, culminating in an attempt to usurp the divinity of an elven god. As punishment, Queen Ellesime stripped him of his elven soul (rendering him mortal), and banished him from her kingdom. However, she allowed him to keep his tremendous magical power, hoping that living among humans would teach him the error of his ways, and he'd use said power for good. Suffice it to say, he did not. When you meet her, she admits she was naive, and many innocent people have suffered horribly for her mistake.
  • Mayor Dobe of Fisherman's Horizon in Final Fantasy VIII is committed to pacifism and talking things out. When the town is attacked by a hostile army threatening to raze the entire place, he goes out alone to try to reason with the army's commanding officer - and when the officer physically attacks him and the heroes step in, he criticizes them for using violence.
    • After the battle, you have the option of trying to talk to him, which results in Squall trying to explain why they fight and essentially saying "Pacifism is great and I wish we could live in peace. But I won't let anyone get hurt because their enemy refuses to respect their pacifism. I'm sorry that we fought, but I'm not sorry we saved your life." The mayor doesn't say anything, and it's implied that he's unable to reconcile his pacifism with his gratitude for SeeD's help.
    • Similarly, in Final Fantasy IX, the Cleyrans that lived in a big tree in the desert for hundreds of years without any fighting, thus they forgot how to defend themselves. When Brahne's forces invade to kill everyone in the tree in order to get a MacGuffin, the Clyerans try to reason with the soldiers as the soldiers are attacking! Unfortunately, unlike the above example, this gets them killed very quickly.
    • Edward nearly bankrupts his country in Final Fantasy IV: The After Years by sending reconstruction aid to other kingdoms who clearly don't need it. This is especially stupid considering his own kingdom is in pretty bad shape as it is, what with the Red Wings bombing his castle to hell in the original game.
  • Flonne from Disgaea. If her nickname doesn't say it all, nothing will.
    • Valvatorez of Disgaea 4 also has a large streak of Stupid Good in him, as he is happily willing to put blind faith in people he knows to be duplicitous and untrustworthy in the name of the Power of Friendship.
  • The elves in Overlord II are incredibly Stupid Good. Excluding Queen Fay, their only concern is saving cute and fluffy animals. When Queen Fay, as part of her Enemy Mine, attempts to perform a Heroic Sacrifice to save her people from destruction by the Glorious Empire, they even try to stop her, which they attribute (correctly) to the influence of the Overlad.
  • Fate/stay night has Emiya Shirou, who takes his Stay in the Kitchen attitude towards his Servant Saber to the point of refusing to summon her in a battle where he would clearly die without her; only a Deus ex Machina saves his sorry hide. Though it can be inferred from this that Shirou's Stupid Good status is more properly a case of Always Save the Girl; he's trying to keep Saber from fighting in the hopes of keeping her from getting hurt. During the Unlimited Blade Works route, Rin comes to realize that his almost-suicidal altruism is largely the result of his survivor's guilt and attempting to justify surviving an accident that claimed the lives of many others.
    • Much like Shirou himself, Saber is also willing to sacrifice everything about herself for others. From the moment that she took up arms and became "king" of England, Saber spent her entire life fighting for others only to be betrayed near the end of her life. Her appearance in the Grail tournament was the result of her dying wish for her kingdom to prosper. Ironically enough, Shirou of all people is amazed at her selflessness, which only goes to further encourage his protective attitude towards her.
  • Daniel, Mordin Solus' assistant in Mass Effect 2 can be considered Stupid Good; if the player kills the thugs that were threatening Daniel's life, Daniel accuses the player of cold-blooded murder. Conversely, if the player lets the thugs go after they release Daniel, Daniel gets angry at Mordin, who says that he would have killed the thugs. Perhaps partially explained by Daniel being human; he likely swore the Hippocratic Oath while learning to be a doctor, and shooting people when you don't have to certainly qualifies as doing harm. Mordin, on the other hand, literally comes from a different world than Daniel, and the chances of its rules for physicians being exactly the same as those of Earth are quite slim.
    • A dossier conversation given by Lair of the Shadow Broker also shows that Daniel's Stupid Good tendencies actually make him a bad doctor. During the plague, he becomes far too emotional to actually focus on treating patients effectively. He is only an assistant, sure, but the first concern of a doctor during an epidemic sure as hell isn't going to be asking about the burial or death rituals of an already dead patient - it would be on quickly moving on to save the people who can be saved. Not to mention the Stupid Good-ness of leaving the clinic in the first place. The good intentions of getting the cure to the air control are undermined by a) high risk of death for an untrained medic and b) abandoning the many sick patients who need his medical help, even if the treatment he can offer is ineffective.
    • Averted by a Paragon Shepard. S/he may try to help as many people possible but s/he will not hesitate to gun down anyone who gets in his/her way while doing so.
  • Fenthick in Neverwinter Nights, to the point that he gets himself hung for treason because he vouched for a deceptive but Obviously Evil lunatic that turned out to be spreading the very plague that he claimed to be trying to cure. Massively averted by the rest of the cast, though.
  • Grand Cleric Elthina from Dragon Age II is calm, patient, generous, genuinely pious, and a devoted mentor to DLC character Sebastian Vael. She also does nothing to fix—or even lighten—the situation between Meredith and Orsino, even though Meredith is technically under her command, preferring to leave the situation up to the Maker (when it's obvious that things have gone way, way beyond that point). Her passivity eventually gets her killed when Anders plants a bomb in the Chantry, to remove any hope of compromise.
  • Pokémon Black and White gives us N, who leads Team Plasma on a crusade to "save" Pokémon from human enslavement, according to the ideals daddy taught him as he was growing up. He falls in this category because [A] Pokémon enjoy human company for the most part (though the abused probably wouldn't want to be around their tormentors for long, just like most anyone else) and [B] daddy happens to be Ghetsis, who intends to take over Unova once humanity is disarmed and is using all of Team Plasma, including his own son to achieve this end. The kid is to be pitied; the rest, not so much.
    • It didn't help that Ghetsis made sure to expose him exclusively to Pokemon that HAD been abused by Trainers.
  • From the Mega Man (Classic) series, we have Mega Man himself. He refuses to believe Bass is an enemy, even as he's attacking. He knowingly walked into a trap to save Dr. Light, even after being told it was a fake because it might be real. When learning that Dr. Wily has a cold, he takes him to the hospital instead of bringing him to justicenote .
    • Mega Man 7 (the American version) attempts to avert the trope at the very end by having Mega Man attempting to kill Wily after being so fed up with all of the doctor's evil doings. While it makes logical sense to get rid of Dr. Wily, it also makes Mega Man look totally out of character, especially since he goes back to his good-natured ways in the later sequels.
    • Dr. Light himself, despite not being the action hero, is also quite gullible and possibly just as stupid as Knuckles. A grand example of this is in Mega Man 10 where Dr. Wily begs Dr. Light and Mega Man to help him find a cure for the Roboenza virus after his own robots attacked him. Along with Mega Man, Dr. Light agrees to help Dr. Wily while ignoring the fact that Dr. Wily has ALWAYS gone back to his evil ways shortly after being released or broken out of prison (though one could argue that the Roboenza virus was dangerous enough that Light took the risk of trusting Wily, who did have a cure).
  • Knuckles' main character trait from his debut in Sonic 3 & Knuckles all the way to Sonic Adventure 2 (at least) was his extreme repeated gullibility concerning who the bad guy was.
  • The Pkunk from Star Control II edge into this territory at times, blithely accepting their fate of being wiped out by the Ilwrath and outright ignoring the danger of contacting their estranged Yehat kin because they're too busy being irritatingly benign space hippies.
  • Uther the Lightbringer in Warcraft. He is so honorable and decent, that he refuses to kill an entire city filled with people that could, at any moment, turn into the undead. He suggests that there might be another way, even though there likely isn't. The only alternative would be to let the Dreadlord Mal'Ganis collect them all, and nobody wants that. Arthas is so disgusted that he relieves Uther of his command and suspends the Paladins' from service. Jaina also refuses, even though, being a sorceress, should know that there is no curenote .
  • Some World of Warcraft players feel this way about the current state of the Argent Crusade. In Wrath of the Lich King, they were the Only Sane Men who were pushing the fight towards the Lich King while the Horde and Alliance bickered. Come Cataclysm, they remain on good terms with both factions. It wouldn't be a problem if the Crusade hadn't specifically stated that they've re-focused their main goal as claiming Lordaeron for the living. This comes into conflict with the Forsaken, who are quickly turning into the Scourge 2.0 by killing the living to raise as new undead, all while plague-bombing and defiling a lot of the landscape. Tirion Fordring's apathy and unwillingness to act against them has been interpreted as either not wanting to provoke the Forsaken so he doesn't provoke the rest of the Horde - thus sacrificing his values for politics - or as him believing that the Forsaken deserve a chance - thus falling squarely into this trope.
    • Jaina Proudmoore often gets similar criticisms. In a recent short story, she was trying to talk to Varian to convince him to keep peace with the Horde. This took place after the novel that made it clear that Garrosh would stop at nothing to claim the entire planet for the Horde, and considering Thrall has so far done exactly nothing about that, one has to wonder what, exactly, she expects Varian to do.
      • However, this has been completely averted in Mists of Pandaria, where Garrosh decides to destroy Theramoore and kill most of its inhabitants in the process. Jaina finally breaks, and spectacularly so by going full-on the *other* way, questioning why the Horde should be allowed to exist and going on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge against Garrosh. The criticisms are now aimed at whether this character development is either believable or just too extreme.
    • Varian himself may have had such a moment in the Siege of Orgrimmar when he stopped Thrall from executing Garrosh, not considering that he could escape to commit more atrocities. And he does. He then decided to give the Horde another chance under Vol'jin after disposing of Garrosh instead of taking advantage of their weakened state to defeat them once and for all. While such an outcome was inevitable (obviously a faction-based MMO can't have one of its factions completely destroy or conquer the other) some, including a few of his fellow Alliance leaders, like Jaina, still question whether Varian truly had the interests of the Alliance at heart when he made this choice, or if he was just making a moral decision at the expense of his own faction. On the other hand, Wrathion alludes to how the rest of the Horde would not have gone down without a long and bloody fight, albeit one he sees as an acceptable sacrifice to unite all of Azeroth.
      • In all fairness, it would have been wrong to murder them after they fought alongside the Alliance to stop Garrosh.
    • And beforehand, similar arguments can be thrown at Malfurion Stormrage. He is the protector of the wilds, but absolutely does not condone the usage of underhanded means even when it's saving the wilds, especially when dealing with his brother Illidan. He turns into a demon in order to save the forest? He's just as bad as the demons and must be banished for his crimes. What was that, Illidan is trying to cast a disastrous spell and in a way put a harm on his lover Tyrande (somewhat. The truth was being twisted by Maiev)? Even if that was aimed to destroy the common enemy, the Lich King? He must pay for his crimes... though he backpedals when there are chances that Tyrande might live, and Illidan genuinely offers to work together to save her. When he woke up from his Emerald Dream, he didn't realize that the Horde as of current were no longer the same good Horde that fought with him to stop Archimonde (it was under Garrosh) so he didn't lift a finger when his forests were razed. He may be a Reasonable Authority Figure at times, but sometimes, that can be questioned.
    • Anduin (the current High King of the Alliance after his father died fighting the Legion) is squarely falling into this trope - and some would say the poster-boy for it. Where do we even start?
  • In Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn, the main character Micaiah epitomizes Stupid Good. She throws herself into hopeless battles in order to save random peasants and spares the life of a mass murderer at one point. In the former case, her victories in these missions make everyone look upon her as a savior; in the latter case, said mass murderer proceeds to mass murder civilians at the capital, forcing her to fight one last battle to correct her error.
    • Elincia, queen of Crimea from the same game, ends up paying for this attitude. She has proof Ludveck is rallying the rebellion to usurp her throne. Upon hearing that his army has mobilized, her first thought is diplomacy. Her hesitance to resort to violence allows her childhood friend to be captured and used as a bargaining chip for the throne of Crimea. She picks this moment to develop from stupid good to Badass Pacifist. She refuses to surrender the throne to an obvious tyrant, no matter the cost, even if that is her friend's life. (Cue Ike.) In fact, Ludveck's entire recruitment strategy is that he accuses her of this.
    • Corrin repeatedly exhibits this in Fire Emblem Fates, such as trying to reason with Garon, despite all that doing is incurring his wrath and having to prove several times they aren't a traitor to the throne, or trusting Zola, despite Zola impersonating Izana earlier on in an attempt to trick the party, and sure enough, Zola stabs Corrin in the back a couple of chapters later by selling them out to Garon.
  • In Soraka's revised background in League of Legends, she's become this. Warwick tricks her into sacrificing her immortality to save him, so he can kill her and steal her heart. Soraka, an immortal being many years old whose own omnipotent guiding voice told her not to save him, believed the best of Warwick and didn't see through his ruse. Though she survived his elaborate trap, she must now live as a mortal without the voice of the stars guiding her.
  • In Tales of the Abyss, this is viciously deconstructed with Anise's parents Pamela and Oliver, whose Perpetual Poverty is caused by donating their entire salaries back to the Order of Lorelei and Oliver's tendency to fall for scams. Neither of them minds, because their faith protects them from harm, and if anyone's so desperate for money that they have to scam others, surely they deserve the charity, right? However, because of a scam Oliver fell for in the past, they're deeply in debt; Anise's precocious Gold Digger behavior, Played for Laughs most of the time, takes on a rather less pleasant cast when it's understood that she's actually just trying to bail her parents out of their own idiocy. Later, we discover that it's even worse than that: Grand Maestro Mohs has been using their debt to practically enslave Anise and force her to act as The Mole for the sake of her parents.
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic:
    • It deconstructs this in the Jedi Knight storyline with Jedi Master Tol Braga, a Jedi Council member who, while not a pacifist, seems to believe any Sith can be redeemed. He justifies this belief based on an experience of his during the Great Offscreen War when he became locked in a duel with a member of the Dark Council, whom he dueled for more than a day. At the end of the fight, his opponent, who drew on strong emotions to fuel his power, was completely exhausted and drained of his hate and other powerful emotions, while Braga was still sustained by the Light Side. He then proceeded to redeem said Dark Council member, bringing him into the Jedi Order. However, this approach backfires spectacularly in the case of The Sith Emperor. During the conclusion of the second story act, an assault on the Emperor's secret fortress is planned, with the goal being to capture him and take him back to the Jedi Temple on Tython so that he may be redeemed, which would undermine the very fabric of Sith society were it to succeed. However, Braga fails to realize that the Empreror is much closer to an Eldritch Abomination than "just another Sith" as he claims before the mission. This results in every member of the strike team being overpowered easily by the Emperor and being mind-controlled into doing his bidding. The player escapes what is implied to be a few months later with the help of the spirit of their deceased master Orgus Din. This results in them confronting the corrupted strike team members and freeing them one by one during the third act, all the while foiling the Emperor's galaxy- annihilating plans, until a final confrontation with Tol Braga himself. During this confrontation, it is revealed that Braga did not need to be mind manipulated by the Emperor into falling to the Dark Side, instead, being faced with complete and utter failure to redeem him, sunk into despair and decided the galaxy was not worth trying to protect.
    • The player can play this trope straight themselves in the conclusion of the Jedi Knight storyline depending on their decisions, though it fails, as well as some of the other storylines.
  • In Eternal Sonata, when Prince Crescendo of the kingdom of Baroque decides that he can no longer support the Andantino resistance against the empire of Forte, he decides to simply travel to Forte to throw himself upon the mercy of the nation's leader, Count Waltz in the hope of negotiating. Anyone in the player party could have told him this was a horrible idea, as Waltz is a petty teenage tyrant who's been poisoning the people of realm with mineral powder that makes them into magic soldiers in an attempt to gain supreme power. The party immediately chases after him and upon finding him chews him out for his reckless action, but unfortunately, the next thing that happens is that said tyrant appears before the group with his right-hand man and a thunder of magical dragons.
  • Fallout 3 pulls some rather controversial stunts to try and force the player to play this way during the ending. The final challenge of the game is that someone has to go into the Project Purity control room and activate the purifier, sacrificing themselves in the process because of the blast of lethal radiation that would come after. The only heroic choice in the game is to make this Heroic Sacrifice yourself, even though you can have up to three party members (a super mutant, a robot, and a ghoul) who should be able to survive the radiation. If you ask them, though, they'll just tell you that this is your destiny, call you a coward, or just flat-out refuse in a very out-of-character manner. Partially averted in the Broken Steel DLC, which allows the super mutant to do the deed for you, and though he does survive, the game still calls you a coward for not performing a Stupid Sacrifice for the greater good.
  • In Devil Survivor, this is Midori Komaki's Fatal Flaw. She will often rush in recklessly to attack demons in the name of helping people, unaware that she is cultivating a reputation as a demon-summoning witch. It comes to a head when you have to save her from an anti-tamer lynch mob, after which you talk some sense into her.

  • Grace of El Goonish Shive. Despite being a Tyke-Bomb, raised in a laboratory by unethical scientists, and then later by a ruthless, murderous mutant, she's a complete pacifist and can't stomach ANY kind of violence. In the end, facing down Damien — a mutant supremacist who intends to annihilate all of humanity, used to savagely beat her while she was a child, intends to rape and forcibly impregnate her to create a race of superhumans, killed her father and then showed her his severed head when she was five and is now about to kill all her friends — she FINALLY snaps and goes Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass on his ass. Halfway through tearing him a new one, however, she regains her self-control, apologizes for attacking him, asks him to surrender (pretty please with sugar on top?) and refuses to attack him further. The only reason he still managed to wind up dead is that he attempted a Taking You with Me gambit, only to have Grace saved by a Deus ex Machina. And afterwards, Grace is traumatized for DAYS about having acted violently.
    • Lampshaded somewhat later when history class introduces Grace to World War II, Nazis, Hitler, and concentration-camps. Making her realize that Damien was basically a second Hitler (with superpowers), and that offering him a chance to surrender and walk away was probably really stupid.
    • Those incidents apparently left their mark, since she's thrown this characterization off entirely. Perceived threats to her friends have become an official Berserk Button, and while she admits that she'd still prefer nonviolent solutions, in worst-case scenarios she's perfectly willing to use lethal force.
  • Helix, the robot from Freefall definitely qualifies as Stupid Good, but it sometimes works out as it causes him to derail Sam's more Chaotic Stupid schemes. (In fairness, most if not all of the robots in the comic come across as a bit naive at times, Helix just perhaps a bit more so than most. Justified in that their individual neural networks are still evolving and a lot of things simply are intellectual new ground for many of them as of yet.)
  • The Gods of Arr-Kelaan has Mike lampshade a subversion of this after catching a thief.
  • Piffany from Nodwick is, in fact, not this trope. While she is The Pollyanna, she is also just so Badass Adorable that she can get away with it. Or perhaps she is this trope, but she has such a "reality distortion field" around her that evil creatures in her presence can be forced to behave if they are told she would cry if they didn't. It's stated by The Powers What Is that her Incorruptible Pure Pureness level is so high that she slides the world toward idealism just by the strength of her happy thoughts.
    • She did, at one point, hire a Stupid Good paladin for the party to serve as a role model for Yeagar. Who insisted on challenging every Undead Mook they found so they couldn't harm the population, instead of making a beeline for the leader, getting Nodwick killed even more than usual. Even Piffany herself realized he was Too Dumb to Live.
  • Celia of The Order of the Stick became increasingly Flanderized as a Stupid Good Pollyanna, though she does at least have enough sense to fight when she or her friends are in imminent danger (with no Third Option available).
    • On the other hand, Celia's reaction to the unnecessary killing of goblins could be interpreted as being the Only Sane Man; she reacts like a real person to real deaths, not like an RPG character. Her inability to recognise that Greysky City is completely evil is another matter, though...
    • Her rationale is explained later. Because she (and everyone in her native plane) is not a mortal/PC race, she does not have a soul. So no afterlife or possibility of Raise Dead for her. As a result, she has a much different view of the results of dying than Humans, Elves, or even Goblins do.
    • Celia's Stupid Good tendencies were subverted in this strip with her rather ruthless reason for not wanting to abandon Belkar.
      • Then there's Elan. The adventure game even lists his alignment as "Foolish Good". That said, most of his actions that really fit this trope are based on willful ignorance and his belief in following narrative conventions about how heroes are supposed to act rather than his very real stupidity or an inability to understand why it might not be a good idea.
  • Pretty much everyone in the "Dimension of Lame" from Sluggy Freelance is Stupid Good — so pacifistic that one mage attempted to heal a demon that was attacking her friends, and that they can be convinced that throwing food at the demons is as bad as the demons eating people alive. Torg ends up describing them as "not as good as they think they are."
  • Rusty and Co.'s Madeline is truly a ditzy do-gooder — who is absolutely badass. However, she has her Stupid Good moments, as when she condoled with a monster that was, indeed, complaining of its trouble but, on the other hand, still had a chokehold on one of her companions.
  • This Harry Potter fancomic.

    Web Original 
  • While alignment seems to not be an issue in the MMORPG Noob takes place in, Sparadrap slips naturally into that by several attempts to adopt monsters as pets, not taking factions into account when he randomly asks other players to join the guild, being friendly to hostile NPCs (notably asking them if they want to join the guild) and playing a healer class.
  • In Puffin Forest's version of the Forgotten Realms, the top of Mount Celestia is guarded by baby harp seals who are apparently the embodiment of this trope.
  • In this story on Not Always Learning, a middle school principal seems to think that the only reason bullies bully others is because they don't know it's mean, and they'll immediately and cheerfully stop as soon as their victim asks them to.
  • Yang in RWBY Abridged is the most selfless and friendly character in the cast, going out of her way to help Ruby and is quick to befriend others. She's also the stupidest and has a tendency to annoy everyone around her.

    Western Animation 
  • Silverbolt of Beast Wars is a Maximal with a sense of honor and nobility so overdeveloped that even the most idealistic of his comrades sometimes roll their eyes at his speeches and secretly wonder if his processor has a glitch.
    Scott McNeil: And then of course, Silverbolt: strong, proud, brave, and smart as a sack of hammers.
    • He also consistently expects the (nominally evil) Blackarachnia to covert to the light side, despite her protestations. Even after she shoots him, he optimistically notes it was non-lethal. (In the end, he's right about her, but she gives him very little reason to believe in her.)
  • The ghost character Poindexter from an episode of Danny Phantom. Even though Danny is getting his revenge against Dash's bullying, Poindexter seems to think that Dash, the muscular jock in a lettermen, is the victim.
  • Surprisingly, Gadget Hackwrench from Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers, despite being The Smart Guy of the team. Gadget is sweet, gentle, and compassionate almost to a fault, and several episodes have it lead to Amusing Injuries among the team or other difficulties solving the case simply because Gadget was so willing to give the Villain of the Week the benefit of the doubt. A couple villains (Thaddeus from "Dirty Rotten Diapers" and Lahwhinie from "Gadget Goes Hawaiian") even directly took advantage of her trusting nature for their own ends. That said, there's no force on earth that can save you from her wrath should she find out, as she will very quickly put her staggeringly high IQ to work utterly destroying you.
  • An episode of Darkwing Duck has the title character split into good and evil halves by a ray gun. The evil half becomes the first appearance of recurring villain Negaduck, while the good half is ineffective because he's unwilling to actually fight.
    • Then there's Binkie Muddlefoot, who tends to be this way a lot in the series. For example, one time when Darkwing tries to use his gas gun on Megavolt, she tries to stop him, claiming that guns are bad (despite the fact that it's a non-lethal weapon and the villain was trying to kill both of them).
  • The eponymous hero of Dave the Barbarian is "huge, but a wimp" says the theme song. The episode "Horders and Sorcery" begins with a puppet play of heroics to recruit Mongol Horders.
    Dave: Awww, the monster got hurted!
  • Elisa from Dead Space: Downfall, who was more worried about saving the crew than quarantining the ship. She also stopped Dr. Kyne from destroying the ship because there are about 10 other people still alive (and they all die, anyway).
  • In the Family Guy episode "Brian Goes Back to College", Brian Griffin is given the chance to cheat on an exam, but chooses not to and fails the class. He then says that "at least I failed honorably" and "at least I didn't quit". The entire family immediately calls him out on that, saying that he should've just cheated and passed. The whole point of taking the class was to get a college degree that would allow him to be hired for a dream writing job he was otherwise completely qualified for. True, it is morally preferable that he be honest, but it is rather pious of him to swagger like that about failing a class for a degree that was going to be purely superficial.
  • Hego from Kim Possible. He hides his identity with glasses and a tie, talks on and on, giving the enemy the chance to attack, and follows the rules of hero/villain interaction to the T, even lecturing the other heroes on the 'proper' way to do things while they were all in danger from the villain. By about halfway through his introductory episode, the heroes completely understand why his little sister turned evil.
  • Charlotte of Making Fiends. She remains convinced that Vendetta is her best friend (despite Vendetta's constant attempts to kill her).
  • Fluttershy from My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic seems to have some Stupid Good tendencies. She has a habit of appending "please," "if it's okay with you," and "if you wouldn't mind" to every request, be it "do me a favor?", or "quit bullying my friends," or "stop destroying my home" (although the last of these was actually quite effective). In part two of the second season premiere, she snuck up on a sleeping Rainbow Dash who had been brainwashed to be disloyal and hateful to her friends, only to politely wake her and ask if she wouldn't mind sitting still so they could forcibly tie her up and remove the curse, prompting a facehoof from Twilight Sparkle. It's finally addressed directly in the season 4 episode "It Ain't Easy Being Breezies" when it's made clear that sometimes one must be Cruel to Be Kind.
    • Although Fluttershy had already begun to deviate from her pure path in "Putting Your Hoof Down" (episode 45, or s2e19) when she dropped her stupid goodness in favour of asserting herself, initially to excess but in the end found a useful compromise and was able to politely refuse Iron Will the minotaur.
  • Phineas from Phineas and Ferb is such an optimist that he has a hard time comprehending that the bad guys aren't his friends. A particular example occurs in "The Chronicles of Meap", where villain Mitch tries repeatedly to explain to Phineas that he's a villain and a poacher, and that he should be feared, but Phineas doesn't get the hint, much to his annoyance.
  • An episode of Rocko's Modern Life began with a fairy breaking Earl the Tough Dog free from the science lab in hopes that he will mend his ways. As soon as she does, he promptly eats her.
  • Fans have pointed out that Samurai Jack tends to act this way sometimes. Frequently, when having to choose between going home and forfeiting his chance to do so in order to save an innocent from death, imprisonment, slavery, or something worse, Jack will choose the latter without hesitation, because well, that's what he does. He never seems to stop to consider that if he were to keep going and take the opportunity, he's succeeded in his goal to Set Right What Once Went Wrong, and save everyone in this Crapsack World, including said innocents whom he selflessly puts first. Of course, because Failure Is the Only Option (if he ever succeeded, the show would end) this is necessary.
  • The Simpsons: Lisa Simpson, so many times:
    • In "The Old Man and the Lisa", Mr. Burns loses his fortune and befriends Lisa, who encourages him to be more eco-friendly. He somehow warps this into making a gigantic net that dredges the ocean for fish, then grinds them into a slurry, which makes him rich again. Burns offers Lisa a 10% of the profits ($12 million total) as his way of saying thanks, and she tears the check up because it's "the right thing to do". The idea that she could have donated the money to actual environmentally-friendly charities never seemed to enter her head; she just wrote it off as "blood money" and dismissed it as inherently dirty. On top of that, the sight of Lisa ripping up the check gives Homer simultaneous heart attacks. In the hospital, he says that he understands why Lisa did it but adds that they really could have used that "twelve thousand dollars". Lisa quietly tells him that it was twelve million. Cue another heart attack.
    • It's not the last time. In "I'm Spelling as Fast as I Can", during the Spellympics she is offered a scholarship to any of the Seven Sisters colleges to throw the tournament (And a hot plate!). Obviously this is a moral dilemma, so she asks Marge if the family can afford to send her to college. Marge admits that it would be very hard on the family. Regardless, Lisa decides it's the 'right' thing to win anyway, even though her real reason for competing was for popularity and attention. As with the Family Guy example, it's better that she's honest, but she could have decided to spell to the end honestly and see what came of it without risking the scholarship, or she could have outed the rigged contest to officials anonymously, but elects to give a loud public speech about how she's been bribed. This backfires in a way reminiscent of A Boy Named Charlie Brown's misspelling "beagel" when she misspells "intransigance", and George Plympton tells her the word is spelled "...E-N-C-E!" and she loses the spelling bee. It's just arrogance that she assumes she can win the Spellympics even when they're rigged against her.
    • "Lisa Gets an 'A'", has Lisa cheating on a test, earning an A+++, which bumps up her school's average GPA to the point that the school earns a federal grant. However, at the ceremony for Lisa, she reveals to the audience that she cheated on the test. Yes, she's once again being honest even if it means that the other students won't get as good of an education because of it. However, Principal Skinner and the rest of the school staff anticipated that she'd do this, as the whole ceremony was a fake. They hold the ceremony a second time (without Lisa) and accept the grant money.
    • All of those are more examples of What You Are in the Dark. A straighter example is in "Bart Star" when Lisa wanted to join the Pee Wee Football league so she could make a statement about sexism. Flanders gladly welcomes her to the team, revealing that there are already some girls on the team. Surprised, Lisa tries to make it about animal cruelty (since footballs are made of "pig skins"), but they explain that the balls are synthetic and part of the profits go to Amnesty International. Her moral high ground utterly shattered, Lisa runs off in tears.
  • Due to his naïveté, Butters Stotch from South Park can teeter anywhere from mildly oblivious and gullible to Too Dumb to Live. This happens especially in "Butters' Very Own Episode".
  • SpongeBob SquarePants considers everyone his friend, no matter how many times they tell him to his face that they hate him. The one exception is Plankton, but even then only sometimes.
  • Wander over Yonder often has Wander taking this role, always being a loving and positive character, even to his enemies (or friends, as Wander considers them), which sometimes just makes things worse. In the end, however, he is usually right all along and earns his happy ending, perhaps due to Laser-Guided Karma.
    • This is especially emphasized in Season 2, where Wander desperately attempts to redeem the omnicidal Lord Dominator, despite everyone's warnings. He even saves her life when her ship blows up in the season finale. That said, this season also reveals that he's much more aware than he lets on, and also potentially justifies this by revealing that he has actually redeemed villains in the past by the same methods.