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Playing With / Ambiguously Trained

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Basic Trope: A character may or may not have been in some form of military or law enforcement service.

  • Straight: Bob is a competent fighter and displays significant knowledge about military equipment.
  • Exaggerated: On a single occasion, Bob demonstrates remarkable proficiency with his country's service weapon.
  • Downplayed: Bob wears a patriotic tattoo, is in therapy for PTSD from something in his past, handles guns extremely well, and has several friends who were previously in the military, all but stating that he served as well.
  • Justified:
    • In the writer's notes, Bob was in the military, but is quiet about his past and doesn't mention it in the story.
    • A regime recently shut down, leaving Bob and a lot of military, police, and military police types jobless.
  • Inverted:
    • In a group of former soldiers, Bob is slower with his gun than his friends at the shooting range, and has different political views than his friends do, implying that he might not have been in the military at all.
    • Ambiguous Criminal History
  • Subverted:
    • Bob talks about the time he served in the military or shows someone his military ID.
    • Dan, who is openly a veteran, asks Bob if he ever served, but Bob denies it, explaining that he's a military enthusiast.
  • Double Subverted:
    • Someone accuses Bob of being a Phony Veteran or forging the ID.
    • Dan tells Bob that some of his behaviors remind him of what he learned in basic training.
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  • Parodied: Despite showing some skills essential to the military, not even Bob can tell if he was ever a soldier or not.
  • Zig Zagged: Bob has an interest in the military, then explains he's an enthusiast. He's shown to know Krav Maga pretty well, but explains he learned it in a civilian self-defense course. When Bob goes to a shooting range, he handles military-style weapons comfortably, but he handles civilian weapons just as well.
  • Averted: From his introduction, Bob is shown to be or explains himself as a war veteran.
  • Enforced: The writer is a military enthusiast, and writes a character with a possible military background as Author Appeal.
  • Lampshaded: "You really think I'm good enough with a gun to be a soldier? That's an honor, thank you."
  • Invoked: Bob's friends go to a shooting range to find out if he knows how to use military-style weapons, knowing that he hasn't gone to one before.
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  • Exploited: Alice hangs around Bob for her own protection, knowing that his combat skill will prove useful in a fight, regardless of if he learned how to fight in the military or not.
  • Defied:
    • Bob actively makes it known that he was in the military, wears camouflage, combat boots, and military paraphernalia as everyday wear, and shows off numerous military-related tattoos.
    • Bob makes a point of telling people that he learned martial arts and weapon use from civilian channels.
  • Discussed: "How do you know how to operate an M16 that well? It's impressive."
  • Conversed: "I get the impression that Bob's interest in the military is more than coincidental."
  • Played For Laughs: Dan makes an inside joke about the military, and Bob laughs in response, but it's never stated if he was just laughing along or if he got the joke.
  • Played For Drama: Bob is in therapy to treat PTSD from some traumatic violence in his past, but it's never told if he was a soldier or police officer at the time of the attack.

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