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Two-Faced Aside

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Actually, they do.

"Dear rich Dora Stanpipe, How I love her!... father's money."
Dan Backslide, The Dover Boys

This trope is when a character says something to another character but then will immediately whisper or silently mouth the opposite sentiment, but done so in a way that the other character doesn't hear/see. This might be done because they don't want to hurt the person's feelings; they'll tell a white lie but then immediately reveal their true feelings in an aside to a different character. This might also be done purely to deceive, such as a villain agreeing to a hero's demands but then quietly ordering his mooks to attack the hero when his back is turned.

A generic example with, say, Bob and Alice, will have Alice asking Bob if he likes a particularly gaudy outfit. Bob doesn't want to hurt Alice's feelings, so he'll tell her, "Oh, yes! Love it!". However, as soon as she turns away, he'll look over at his friend Charlie and shake his head while mouthing, "Noooo..." An alternate example might be Alice asking Bob if he wants to go shopping. Bob, not wanting to anger her, will exuberantly say, "Sure! I'd love to!" As Alice turns away, Bob then desperately whispers, "Help me!" to passersby.

A work or character fond of Breaking the Fourth Wall may direct this remark straight to the audience.

See also Hypocritical Humor, for the more comedic use of this trope. For the more dramatic use, compare False Reassurance and I Lied. Also see I've Heard of That — What Is It?. Compare *Cough* Snark *Cough* for a more blatant way to simultaneously express and obscure a statement. Not to be confused with literally being Two-Faced.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • The Castle of Cagliostro: After being cornered on the roof by the Count and his men, Clarisse offers to surrender her ring to him on the condition they let Lupin and Fujiko go. Cagliostro pretends to agree to these terms. Yet when his right hand man, Gordo, asks, he promptly replies low enough so only Gordo can hear him: "When she moves away, shoot 'em."
  • In Non Non Biyori, Kazuho tries to comfort Komari — who was angsting about her shortness — by saying that Komari's height is normal for a 14-year-old. When the latter appeared to brighten up from this statement, Kazuho mutters about how she was using the average height standard of the Meiji era. Unfortunately Komari heard this and becomes even more depressed.
  • Project A-Ko: At the end of Uncivil Wars, A-ko slyly asks B-ko "how far" Gail managed to get with her. B-ko catches the insinuation and hastily replies nothing happened, which A-ko accepts. That is, until B-ko smirks at the viewer and adds "nothing at all."
  • So, I Can't Play H!: During Iria's battle against Lisara, Iria taunts her by threatening to seduce Ryosuke away from her. Lisara falls for it and plays right into her hands.
    Iria: Anything that belongs to Lisara is something I feel like stealing. (winks at the audience) Kidding.
    Lisara: Why you... YOU FRIKIN' WHORE!!

    Comic Strips 
  • The very first Peanuts strip may qualify.
    Shermy: Well, here comes good ol' Charlie Brown! Good ol' Charlie Brown, yes sir! Good ol' Charlie Brown... (after he walks past) how I hate him!

    Film — Animation 
  • In Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, the mayor, venting to Brent, calls the town's inhabitants "sardine-sucking knucklescrapers." Brent chimes in, "But not me, right?" The mayor assures him that he didn't mean him, but immediately grimaces and rolls his eyes once he turns away.
  • From Ursula's Villain Song "Poor Unfortunate Souls" in The Little Mermaid (1989):
    And I fortunately know a little magic
    It's a talent that I always have possessed
    And dear lady, please don't laugh, I use it on behalf
    Of the miserable, the lonely, and depressed!

    (aside to Flotsam and Jetsam) Pathetic.
    • A slightly more blatant example is when she says the following toward the end of that song:
      (whispering) Flotsam, Jetsam, now I've got her boys!

    Film — Live-Action 
  • The opening of Avengers: Age of Ultron has Baron Von Strucker addressing his men as the Avengers attack his facility.
    Strucker: We will not yield. The Americans send their circus freaks to test us. We will send them back, in bags. NO SURRENDER!
    Strucker: (quietly, to Dr. List) I'm going to surrender...
  • A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum: When Pesudolus tells Miles Gloriosus that his bride-to-be, Philia, is dead, he first shouts to the skies that she is ugly! Ugly! UGLY! But then whispers that he only said that so the gods wouldn't get jealous.
  • In Galaxy Quest, Jason attempts this when Sarris gives him ten seconds to retrieve the Omega-13. He gives a throat-slashing signal for Gwen to cut the transmission and uses that time to plan an attack on Sarris' ship instead, saying "he is as stupid as he is ugly." However, Sarris heard the entire thing because Gwen thought the signal meant "we're dead."
    Sarris: Perhaps I am not as stupid as I am ugly, Commander!
  • In the Beatles movie Help!, when Ringo is about to have his finger shrunk with a potion so a magic ring can be removed, George speculates that there might be some insurance they could get out of it. John indignantly says "I wouldn't think of such a thing!", before whispering "Find out, eh?"
  • Home Alone 2: Lost in New York had Buzz doing this, apologizing and being very contrite to the family for his part in the choir debacle, and then when Kevin is ready to do the same, he whispers, "Beat that, you little trout-sniffer."
  • Mean Girls featured this. Cady is talking to Regina, who calls out to a passing girl that she loves her skirt. Once the girl has moved on, Regina says to Cady, "That is the ugliest effing skirt I've ever seen." Cady laughs... and then flashes back to their first conversation, when Regina complimented her bracelet in exactly the same tone.
  • The Princess Bride. When Buttercup asks Humperdinck to promise he'll return Westley to his ship:
    Humperdinck: I swear it will be done. (aside to Count Rugen) Once we're out of sight, take him back to Florin and throw him in the Pit of Despair.
    Count Rugen: I swear it will be done.
  • Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan: Khan has successfully ambushed the Enterprise and is demanding Kirk give him information on Project Genesis. Kirk pretends to give into Khan's demands while quietly buying time to prepare a counterattack.
    Kirk: Stand by to receive our transmission. [quietly] Mr. Sulu, lock phasers on target and await my command.
  • Star Wars: Grand Moff Tarkin employs this with Princess Leia in A New Hope just before he orders the Death Star to blow Alderaan to smithereens:
    Tarkin: You would prefer another target, a military target? Then name the system! I grow tired of asking this so it will be the last time: Where is the rebel base?
    Leia: Dantooine. They're on Dantooine.
    Tarkin: There. You see, Lord Vader, she can be reasonable. Continue with the operation; you may fire when ready.
    Leia: What?!
    Tarkin: You're far too trusting. Dantooine is too remote to make an effective demonstration... but don't worry; we will deal with your rebel friends soon enough.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: As Colonel Talbot says he's going to visit to get some answers, Coulson replies "Sounds good!" But as soon as the call ends, he comments "That doesn't sound good..."
  • In the Babylon 5 episode "The Quality of Mercy", Mollari goes to a bar with Lennier (mostly so he can rip him off, making him pay everything). Lennier then proceeds to bore him with his entire life story. Mollari, looking pained, says: "Really? That's really interesting." Then he whispers to the female bar tender: "Kill me?"
  • In one segment of Chappelle's Show, a reporter is investigating a "Jedi abuse scandal" analogous to the Catholic priest pedophilia scandals. While interviewing a "Jarth Mader", an anonymous victim who wears a helmet and has a respiration problem, Mader breaks down and puts his head in his hands in tears. The reporter says, out loud, to the cameraman, "Cut", but mouths the words "Keep rolling" when Mader's not looking.
  • Doctor Who:
    • Inverted in "Smith and Jones", when Martha steps into the TARDIS for the first time:
      Martha: It's bigger on the inside than it is on the outside!
      [midway through Martha's line, the camera cuts to show the Doctor mouthing her words at the same time]
      The Doctor: Is it? Hadn't noticed.
    • "The God Complex": The Doctor is very impressed with Rita.
      The Doctor: Oh, you're good... Amy, with regret, you're fired.
      Amy: What??
      The Doctor: Kidding! [mouthing to Rita] Call me.
  • In the Everybody Loves Raymond episode "Turkey or Fish", Ray tells his mother he'll eat her turkey and then mouths to Debra that he won't.
  • Hannah Montana: A judge tells the defendant he'd have a chance to explain himself but later he whispers to Miley and Lily he actually won't.
  • Malcolm in the Middle: Parodied. When Francis asks Otto about Paintcan's condition in front of her, he replies that she's just fine. He and Francis move to the side, where he tells him that she's actually terminal. Thing is, Paintcan is a horse who can't understand them.
  • In episode 24 of Mimpi Metropolitan, Alan tells Pipin that she and her aunt are similar, which Pipin takes as a compliment. Alan then turns his face to the camera and comments that they are similarly weird.
  • In Slings & Arrows, Holly is introduced as the nice lady taking over a company, then, whispered, "She's the devil".
  • Parodied in the Studio C sketch, "Evil Asides" where the creepy old lady says many ominous things in her asides...and the other people can hear her—they can even hear the creepy music that accompanies it!
  • From Survivor: South Pacific:
    Cochran: I have a chance, right?
    Ozzy: Of course you have a chance. Everyone has a chance. [Cut to the Confession Cam] He doesn't have a chance...
  • In Whose Line Is It Anyway?, the game Narrate has two people acting out a Film Noir scene in an unconventional setting (usually Colin Mochrie and Ryan Stiles), complete with aside narration.
    Ryan: "Fresno, eh? That's a lovely town.
    Aside Glance
    Ryan: It wasn't.

  • Dimension X: In "Hello Tomorrow", the Director of Emotional Stability tells Lois, his fiance, that he will prevent XJ12's execution. As soon as his fiance leaves, he calls the genetic cages back and orders them to continue with the execution.

    Stand-Up Comedy 
  • Suzy Eddie Izzard: A running gag from Dress to Kill involves turning a Blatant Lie about just having found out that a certain person has died, then admitting to lying, into an endless cycle of these.

  • Older Than Steam: William Shakespeare is fond of employing this trope with his villains.
    • In the second scene of Cymbeline, two lords collectively do this to Cloten, with one sucking up to him and the other making the snarky asides.
    • Iago does this in Othello.
    • Richard III does this, most notably after wooing Lady Anne.
    • Fabian does this in Twelfth Night.
      Fabian: Very brief, and to exceeding good sense—less.

    Video Games 
  • Broken Sword II: The Smoking Mirror: When he's first introduced to Sharon Kowalski, George acts as though he already knows her, then whispers to himself that he's never heard her name before.
  • In Diablo III, the Scoundrel has a personality that can easily apply these.
    Lyndon: Fair price indeed! (aside) You're getting swindled!
  • In A Hat in Time during the Picture Perfect level, DJ Grooves will help Hat Kid gather fans by helping her in various endorsements, in one of which he asks you to not say the word "Peck" as there is a terrible record of cooking show guests cursing on-camera. If you choose to answer the question he makes with "PECK!" he'll try to save face by telling the audience "Look at the mouth on this girl! She's really something!" before he quietly mumbles to her to get out of the endorsement before the older penguins realize what just happened. The fun part is that you get a lot of fans anyway.
  • NEEDY STREAMER OVERLOAD: Whenever Ame does something she deems noteworthy enough for Tweeter, she posts about it on her KAngel account with a cheerful, sugary caption. She then usually follows up with another post on her private account, making a much more cynical remark or observation about the same incident.
  • GLaDOS does this in Portal 2, when Wheatley begins to recycle GLaDOS's You Are Fat and Adoption Diss insults—badly—GLaDOS asks him what, exactly, is wrong with those things. As Wheatley is at a loss for words, GLaDOS says to you:
    GLaDOS: For the record, you are adopted And That's Terrible. But just work with me.
  • Team Fortress 2:
    • In the video "Meet the Medic", the Medic tells the Heavy that "Ribs grow back". Then he whispers to his dove: "No they don't." note  That said, his medigun can probably grow them back anyways.
    • The Mann vs. Machine update revealed a few post-WAR! event domination clips that reveal the enemy Soldier and Demoman never stopped being friends, even though they were hired to kill each other.
      Demoman: Everyone, I do not like this man! He is a soulless monster! (aside) I really do like you, though; it's just for show.
  • Tyranny: The Voices of Nerat can communicate telepathically and do so during verbal communication. During the initial discussion between the Voices and Graven Ashe, they make a few of these to the Player Character through highjacking the green text.

    Web Animation 
  • In season 3 of RWBY, Emerald is shown very friendly to team RWBY at the fair. Once they're out of earshot, Emerald tells Mercury she hates them. She's only acting nice on orders from Cinder.

  • 8-Bit Theater: this episode is based around lampshading this trope in various ways.
  • In El Goonish Shive, Sarah tells Grace and Susan that she doesn't resent any of them for their magic then turns aside and whispers "...except maybe Elliot." Naturally, since they're in a car, Susan hears her and calls her out on it.

    Web Video 
  • StacheBros: In "Episode 1-6 - Voyage to Yoshi's Island" of "Mario & Luigi! Stache Bros", Boo gets the idea to possess Bowser so they can catch up to the helicopter that Mario and Donkey Kong stole from him. When Bowser asks if it'll hurt, Boo tells him it won't, but then whispers to the audience that it will.

    Western Animation 
  • American Dad!: In "Finger-Lenting Good", Roger makes a comment about wanting to see everybody's 'ta-tas' during his Mardi Gras party - except Haley's, saying that they're ugly and "90% nips". Jeff (Haley's husband) pulls this trope.
    Haley: They're not ugly!
    Jeff: (reassuringly shakes his head, to Haley)
    (Haley looks down to her plate)
    Jeff: (also reassuringly nods his head, to Stan and Francine)
  • The Critic: Vlada Veramirovich will always greet the cast kindly, but then insult them to his waiter in a foreign language. Parodied in From Chunk to Hunk.
    Vlada: I do it because I love you.
    Announcer: Vlada Veramirovich is paid 5 million dollars for his service and does not love any of you.
  • In the Futurama episode "The Sting", Farnsworth is seated between Leela and Bender:
    Leela: (tearfully) This is all my fault!
    Farnsworth: Oh no... no.
    Farnsworth: (to Bender) I'M LYING TO MAKE HER FEEL BETTER.
  • Metalocalypse. Ofdensen offers Dr. Rockso the Rock-and-Roll Clown a ride home from the compound, telling a minion "Give him whatever he wants", then quietly, "Put the boots to him, medium-style."
  • In the UK dub of The Mr. Men Show episode "Cooking":
    Miss Naughty: Did you enjoy the salads?
    Mr. Grumpy: Oh, yes, it was delicious.
    Mr. Quiet: It was?
    Mr. Grumpy: (aside) That's not true.
    Mr. Quiet: Oh.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Parodied in the episode "Homer the Whopper" when Homer has a fitness trainer. Whenever the trainer is on the phone, he says nice things to the person on the phone, then immediately tells Homer that he really felt the opposite way, and hates that person. He even does it when he says goodbye at the end of the conversation, turning to Homer and saying, "Bad bye." This is driven to the extreme when he does this while having a conversation with Homer in person and still making opposing statements as asides. When Homer asks him to stop, he says, "I'm sorry," then as the aside, says, "I'm not sorry." Remember: he's only talking to one person here.
    • This was a Running Gag with stereotypical Italian chef Luigi Risotto: he would be incredibly polite to his customers, run in the kitchen and immediately badmouth them to his unseen cook Salvatore unaware that they can hear him.
      Luigi Risotto: Oh, you miss you friend, huh? Don't-ah you worry, my cook can surely cheer you up-ah. (enters kitchen) Hey Salvatore, give-ah the ugly kid a plate of the red-ah crap-ah!
    • Krusty tries to do this in "A Star Is Burns," but ends up inverting it. Springfield is hosting a film festival, and Burns makes an autobiographical biopic that is self-indulgent and obviously plagiarized. After Krusty votes for it, the others are incredulous and he responds:
      Krusty: Let's just say it moved me. TO A BIGGER HOUSE! ...Uh-oh, said the loud part quiet and the quiet part loud. Eh heh heh.
  • Total Drama: A lot of examples are courtesy of the confessional.
    • With some heavy demands, Harold accepts a new alliance with Heather in "Total Drama Drama Drama Drama Island" and allows her to get in the back of his canoe. He asks her if she thinks they'll become friends after all this is over, which Heather answers with an affirmation. As Harold paddles back to camp, however, Heather turns to the camera, sneers, and shakes her head.
    • Sierra becomes injured and loses all of her hair during the explosion of the Total Drama Jumbo Jet. In "Planes, Trains, and Hot Air Mobiles", Heather helps her out by giving her a wheelchair and a Rapa Nui headdress. A hesitant Sierra asks if it looks okay and Heather, who stands behind her, quickly affirms that she looks gorgeous. She then signals to Cody, who stands in front of Sierra, that the new look is pukeworthy but that this is for the best right now.
    • In "Moon Madness", Gwen saves Courtney from a ferocious deer in the nick of time. Courtney expresses surprise, which Gwen counters by saying that Courtney would've done the same in the reverse scenario. Courtney agrees on the spot, but she reveals in the confessional that she would've let Gwen become deer food without hesitation.
    • Upon hearing Jasmine's idea to open a combination cage-fighting school and flower shop in "Lies, Cries, and One Big Prize", Dave chimes in that he thinks that that's an amazing idea. In the confessional, he notes that it's a horrible idea and demonstrates that he misunderstands Jasmine's idea to begin with by asking who would ever get into a fight with flowers.
  • The Transformers - Punch, in his disguise as the Decepticon Counterpunch, did this once.
    Counterpunch: (to some Decepticons) You deal with my Autobot counterpart. I've heard he's nearby.
    (leaves the room and transforms)
    Punch: ...Real nearby.
    (runs back into the room)


Team Fortress 2 - Medic

Don't be such a baby, ribs grow back.

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