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Walking Spoiler

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A character or thing who has most of the tropes underneath it as spoilers. Mentioning anything about this character/thing at all — worst case scenario, this includes its name or even its existence alone — will often reveal spoilers about the work they feature in, which predictably makes talking about it difficult. Some fans reconcile this by using euphemisms, others by avoiding talking about it at all, others just by placing a warning that the following will contain massive spoilers.

Can overlap with It Was His Sled, if the work in question is old or culturally engrained enough that pretty much everybody already knows about the various plot twists. Often will overlap with Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer if the marketers don't decide otherwise.

Also, this is not about characters that are involved in many plot twists but the mere existence of the character within the narrative is a spoiler itself, that makes it impossible to talk about the character without spoiling the plot.


This is a Spoilered Rotten trope (on character pages), that means that EVERY SINGLE EXAMPLE on this list is a spoiler by default and most of them will be unmarked. If you don't know what that means, then you should probably take a good look at the page image for reference. It'll all become clear.

Example Subpages:


Other Examples:

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    Films — Animation 
  • Chester V is the Big Bad of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2.
  • Frozen (2013) builds up Hans as the Love Interest for Anna, and then turns out he's a sociopath who wanted to marry himself into the throne - and thus doesn't find a disadvantage in letting Anna die.
  • Home has the Gorg, who only attacks the Boov to repopulate his species with the children taken by Smek.
  • Bringing up either Valka or the Bewilderbeast from How to Train Your Dragon 2 spoils half the plot.
  • The live action characters from The LEGO Movie due to introducing a whole new level of depth to the movie and coming right smack out of nowhere, with only the briefest of foreshadowing leading up to their appearance.
  • Meet the Robinsons:
    • Cornelius Robinson is this due to his appearance; since he's actually Lewis in the future, any depiction of him before this is revealed would have spoiled the plot significantly. Before the revelation, he is never actually shown with Wilbur lying and claiming he looks like Tom Selleck to Lewis.
    • Lewis himself would have been this to the Robinsons in-universe thanks to his hair, hence Wilbur forcing him to wear the hat.
  • My Little Pony: Equestria Girls:
    • It's impossible to talk about the first film's Big Bad Sunset Shimmer without talking about her redemption arc in the second film, which in turn leads to her becoming The Leader of the human Elements of Harmony from the third movie onwards.
    • You can't talk about Human Twilight Sparkle without discussing the events of the third movie, with her undergoing a similar One-Winged Angel transformation that Sunset did in the first film.
  • It's hard to discuss King Candy without spoiling all the twists in Wreck-It Ralph.
  • The Smurfy Grove Smurfs in Smurfs: The Lost Village. The premise of the movie relies on the main cast discovering evidence of another Smurf village somewhere in the Forbidden Forest. It's who these new Smurfs actually are that is in spoiler territory.

  • The Adventure Zone's Balance Arc has quite a few. It's safe to say that anyone involved with the IPRE is extremely spoiler-heavy, but especially:
    • Barry Bluejeans and Davenport, minor gag characters with seemingly no impact on the story at first glance, are nearly impossible to talk about without mentioning that they're respectively the Red Robe and the former captain of the IPRE.
    • John's mere existence is a threefold spoiler: the identity of the mysterious Big Bad, the fact that said Big Bad is sentient rather than a mindless malevolent force, and the true reason behind the protagonists' mission to reclaim the Relics.
    • Simply talking about Lup and her relation to other characters reveals nearly the entirety of the protagonists' spoiler-heavy backstory (which involves, among other things, the revelation that the Red Robes are good and a Genre Shift from high fantasy to a Space Opera.)
  • The Magnus Archives:
    • Saying anything about Jonah Magnus will inevitably lead to at least one of three things being spoiled: that he founded the Magnus Institute in service to Beholding, that he's currently possessing Elias Bouchard, or that he's been working throughout the series to cause the apocalypse, which he finally achieves at the end of Season 4.
    • To a lesser extent, it's impossible to talk about Oliver Banks without revealing that Antonio Blake (one of the earliest plot-relevant statement givers) is a fabricated persona.
  • The Penumbra Podcast:
    • It's impossible to talk about Peter Nureyev without revealing the fact that he's also Rex Glass, and thus spoiling the First-Episode Twist that "secret agent" Rex Glass is actually a Con Man trying to steal from Juno.
    • Ramses O'Flaherty. He's introduced as a kindly mayoral candidate who hires Juno as a bodyguard... but his narrative importance comes from the fact that he's a) secretly evil and trying to mind-control the entirety of Hyperion City with the THEIA Soul and b) actually Jack Takano, the Northstar employee that ruined the Steel family's lives when Juno was four years old.

  • It is impossible to discuss the full importance of Baron Typhonus in Dino Attack RPG without revealing some major spoilers.
  • As of version 5, Tracen Danya has taken up this role in Survival of the Fittest, in that while he was mentioned as early as v1, it's hard to mention his current status without mentioning his taking up the mantle after his father (the Big Bad starting from v1) who died partway through v4.

  • The original West End version of the musical Charlie and the Chocolate Factory had several Canon Foreigner minor characters added to the first act — and one who seemed to be one. That would be the elderly tramp at the junkyard, who performs a small but vital role in encouraging Charlie Bucket to use some dropped money to buy a Wonka Bar that turns out to have the last Golden Ticket in it. In the show's final moments it's revealed that he was actually Willy Wonka in an elaborate Wig, Dress, Accent disguise, a big twist on the familiar story. Since the show did not Cast as a Mask, the tramp wasn't mentioned in the cast list, further concealing the spoiler to the casual observer. The subsequent Broadway Retool dropped this in favor of establishing at the top of the show that Wonka is heading out into the world King Incognito as a candy shop owner for Act One.
  • You can't really describe the plot of Finale without including the big reveal that the world is ending.
  • In Next to Normal, it's very hard to define Gabe Goodman's actions without revealing the fact that he's either a ghost or the hallucination that embodies Diana's grief over the death of the real Gabe.
  • In Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, after Sweeney Todd comes ashore in London, he is approached by a half-mad, disheveled beggar woman that claims to recognise him. Later she shows up to tell Anthony about Joanna and Judge Turpin and makes herself a nuisance around the pie shop, babbling about the suspicious smoke and scent. It turns out that she is actually Sweeney's wife, Lucy, whom he was led to believe to have swallowed arsenic and died after being raped by Judge Turpin. Sweeney kills her when she wanders into his tonsorial parlour (and her past home) to get her out of the way before the Judge arrives. After he realises what he's done, he angrily confronts Mrs. Lovett, who admits she knew Lucy lived. In a rage, he throws Lovett into her own oven and holds Lucy one last time, before accepting death.

    • Mata Nui, two-fold: first, the story's biggest secret was that he was, in fact, the universe-sized robot that the first 8 years of storyline took place in/on. Second, he only came into the forefront as a character after being usurped by the Big Bad. By talking about him, you not only reveal his identity and nature but also that The Bad Guy Wins at the end of the first Myth Arc.
    • Velika becomes this after the Voya Nui arc is over, although it's sort of subverted as the revelation he was a Great Being and responsible for the problems with the Bota Magna group the murders Kopaka and Onewa were investigating were from Word of God.

    Web Animation 
  • If the Emperor Had a Text-to-Speech Device packs a double punch at the end of Season Two with near-simultaneous arrival of Vulkan and Rogal Dorn, the latter of which comes pretty much out of nowhere.
  • Inanimate Insanity: Pretty much everything about Taco is a major spoiler: her Obfuscating Stupidity for the entireity of Season 1 in order to gain viewer support, her true nature as a manipulative and snobby Evil Brit, her surprise return in Season 2, and her significance therein.
  • Red vs. Blue: Due to the fact that this series has been running since 2003, it should be expected that a lot of characters could be considered Walking Spoilers. Here are the highlights:
    • For characters who are this in The Recollection:
      • Church, due to being the center of two of the biggest twist in the series, the reveals that he's the Alpha A.I. and that he's based on the Director. Those two alone make him this, but he becomes an even bigger Walking Spoiler when the Alpha-Church gets Killed Off for Real midway through the arc and gets replaced by Epsilon-Church as the main protagonist of the series.
      • Tex, due to the reveal that she's the Beta A.I., as well as her connection to fellow Walking Spoiler Allison.
      • The A.I.s in general are this, due to the reveal that they're actually fragments of the Alpha A.I..
      • The Director, due to him being the original Leonard Church as well as being the template for the Alpha A.I..
      • The original, human Allison is the biggest spoiler in the series, as she reveals the truth about Tex, the Director, and everyone caught in his plans.
    • For characters who are this in The Project Freelancer Saga:
      • Agent Carolina becomes this from this arc onward. Up until the final few seconds of Season 9, she was assumed to be dead, so her appearances in the present day are impossible to talk about without spoiling that she, in fact, is truly not dead at all.
      • The Insurrectionist Leader is this, due to the reveal that he's actually the C.T. the Reds and Blues encountered during The Recollection, rather than Agent Connecticut like implied.
      • The Blue Freelancer who participates in the assault on the Insurrectionist base is this, due to the reveal that he's actually Agent Florida, as well as the fact that his true identity is Captain Butch Flowers, retroactively painting the character in a much darker light.
    • For characters who are this in The Chorus Trilogy:
      • Felix is built up as a good guy, then he is revealed to be Evil All Along. The fact that his characterization does a near complete 180 after the reveal makes this even worse.
      • Control, the person who hired Locus and Felix to wipe out Chorus' people. It's a spoiler to even mention that they're part of a third party in the Chorus Civil War. And then there's the reveal that they're true identity is Chairman Hargrove, revealing him to be the Greater-Scope Villain for the entire series up to that point.
      • Charon Industries and the Space Pirates in general are this, given the mere mention of them reveals that there's a third-party in the Chorus Civil War.
      • Mentioning Sharkface's appearance in this arc spoils the reveal that he survived his supposed death in The Project Freelancer Saga.
    • For characters who are this in The Shisno Trilogy:
      • The trilogy's first season parodies this with an ominous looking FOTUS soldier that turns out to be a process server... and plays this straight with the real villains, the Blues and Reds, specifically their leader, Temple, whose entire character is a major spoiler for the second half of the season.
      • The reveal in The Shisno Paradox that Genkins is The Dragon to Chrovos is a major spoiler. It gets even worse with the reveal in Singularity that he's a past version of Chrovos via a Stable Time Loop.
      • Similarly, Chrovos' mere existence spoils the reveal that Atlus isn't actually the season's Big Bad. And, as with Genkins, the reveal in Singularity that the two are the same person via a Stable Time Loop makes them an even bigger one.
      • While the fact that Four Seven Niner and Recovery Command are the same person was something the fandom assumed for a long time, the reveal in Singularity that this truly is the case is still a big enough twist to consider her a Walking Spoiler.
  • Sam & Mickey have Barbie's personal assistant Tinka Reynolds, whose debut episode revealed her at the end as Barbie's presumed-dead sister Tutti, who suffered amnesia and gained new parents after Barbie's parents lost her.

    Web Original 
  • Dr. Josh Sharman of Lightning Dust. His placement on the character page alone reveals his true status.
  • TV Tropes: In works pages, some tropes themselves in the right context are Walking Spoilers, such as some Death and Ending Tropes. For example, in a Character Page, seeing "Disney Death" under a certain character is almost a dead giveaway that they will survive at least one apparent death. Subverted Disney Deaths are possible, but not common.

    Web Videos 
  • Critical Role has several:
    • Probably the biggest is Taryon Derrington, whose very presence and who plays him spoils that Scanlan Shorthalt, Sam Riegel's previous character, left the party. Caduceus Clay serves as the same in the second campaign.
    • Kaylie is hard to talk about without revealing that she's Scanlan's daughter from a one-night stand and a major catalyst in his Character Development.
    • Cassandra de Rolo, Percy's sister, is impossible to talk about without spoiling something, especially since we're lead to believe she was just a Death by Origin Story. The fact that she's still alive is just the beginning though, she's also a Heel–Face Revolving Door.
    • Orthax, the Shadow Demon. Simply talking about him spoils that Percy's Sanity Slippage and Roaring Rampage of Revenge against the Briarwoods is actually a case of Demonic Possession, that he's the real Final Boss of the Briarwood arc, and that Percy successfully overcomes his influence. Later reveals also show that he consumes the souls of everyone Percy kills, which puts all of Percy's earlier battles in a much darker light.
    • Anna Ripley is also difficult to talk about without revealing that Percy sparing her during the Briarwood arc had major consequences, with her coming back later on seeking the Vestiges, becoming the new host of Orthax, and her being the first villain to kill a party member. From the same arc, Kynan Leore was just introduced as a young Vox Machina fanboy earlier on, before coming back many episodes later working for Ripley.
  • Don't Hug Me I'm Scared:
    • Malcolm's existence spoils the true nature of the Love Cult.
    • The appearance of the Puppeteers spoils the ending to the fourth.
    • It's hard to explain who the Cans are without spoiling the death of Duck Guy.
    • The other Red Guys seen in the sixth installment are impossible to discuss without spoiling Red Guy's escape.
    • The other teachers seen in the finale, to a lesser extent: discussing them reveals the true nature of the puppets' world... maybe.
  • Almost any rapper in Epic Rap Battles of History who arrives late in the battle, either to back up another rapper or take on both of the other participants at once. Usually, their mere existence is a spoiler.
  • In Mr. Buddy's "If England Was a Pokémon Region" video, Victoria of the region's Elite Four is difficult to talk about given that she's the one that gave Team Imperium the plan to awaken Toxygen and may also have had a role in the Australia region's story.
  • SMG4's Mario Bloopers: The villains for two of the arcs happen to be this:
    • Waluigi, who was previously depicted as just the sidekick to Wario, unlocks The Power of Rejection when trying to get into Smash, causes the T-Pose Virus outbreak, and eventually becomes one of the most powerful villains in the series.
    • Francis, the head of the Anime Cartel, becomes this after the anime ban is lifted, as he decides to kidnap Axol and take Inkweaver from him, then abduct all the Inklings in Inkopolis with the intent of harnessing their ink to create as many "anime waifus" as he pleases. His actions also cause the death of Desti and Meggy becoming human.
  • Doug Walker in To Boldly Flee. Not The Nostalgia Critic, Doug Walker. The Nostalgia Critic himself becomes this in post-To Boldly Flee canon (before he was Un-Canceled, of course).
  • Firebrand in Tribe Twelve. Assumed to be a malevolent member of collective, Firebrand's Heel–Face Turn in INTERCEPTION and reveal as a future/alternative timeline Noah make his identity a major spoiler.
  • Vinesauce Tomodachi Life has several:
    • Isaac is most famous for causing the game to crash when being added to the island, causing the birth of an Alternate Dimension and the earliest indication of Cerebus Syndrome.
    • HOTDOG is initially a fairly one-note character that gets removed very shortly after his initial appearance. Then he shows up again much later with no explanation, introducing Vinny's willingness to alter things off-screen (which shapes the entire plot not long after).
    • The Jahns are the most prevalent example — a lot of their character in the later part of the series is shaped by their race invading the island and enacting an Assimilation Plot.
  • Yandere High School has SirCutieYuki, who at the start of the series comes off as no different than most of the other students in Samgladiator's class, but much later is revealed to be the titular Yandere and responsible for all the deaths that happen in the series, plus being a Yakuza boss's daughter.
  • Similarly, MangoTango's Yandere Middle School has RicherKidRichard, who can only say "Yeah", but in the finale is revealed to be the one behind the deaths and disappearances in the series as well as an Omnicidal Maniac.


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