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Playing With / Break Them by Talking

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Basic Trope: A character is emotionally damaged just by another character's words.

  • Straight: After receiving a Breaking Speech from Alice about his behavior, Bob suffers from a Heroic BSoD.
  • Exaggerated: Bob is Driven to Suicide just by a few insults from Alice.
  • Downplayed: While not causing emotional harm, Bob manages to make Alice unsettled and rethink her beliefs with a few words.
  • Justified:
    • Bob has low self esteem.
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    • Alice has such a powerful way with words that she has broken even greater Determinators than Bob in the past.
    • Alice has a Compelling Voice that brainwashes Bob.
  • Inverted:
    • Bob is proud that Alice made the speech, and returns the favor by giving her one.
    • The speech makes Bob proud for some reason.
    • Alice's speech makes HER have a Heroic BSoD.
    • Bob's undergoing a Crisis of Faith when Alice delivers her speech, which, among other things, includes Virtue Is Weakness and Belief Makes You Stupid. Instead of breaking Bob, it speeds up the process of sorting through it, inadvertently giving him a Heroic Second Wind.
  • Subverted: Alice's speech affects Bob, but he's not broken by it.
  • Double Subverted: Bob just managed to keep a calm composure because he was in public. His Heroic BSoD first hits him the moment he is alone.
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  • Parodied: Alice calls Bob a "big stupid doodoo head" (or something to that effect). This causes Bob to go through a major (and very melodramatic) existential crisis.
  • Zig Zagged: Bob tells Alice why she sucks, and Alice is harmed, only for her to recover and give Bob a similar speech that he shrugs off, and he replies with another speech that actually has the unfortunate affect of fixing what damage he had done to Alice.
  • Averted:
    • Alice's speech doesn't even faze Bob.
    • No speeches are made.
  • Enforced:
    • "We've been getting complaints that Bob is too violent to be a good role model. Let's have him solve this next problem with words for some better ratings."
  • Lampshaded: "You're telling me you hurt him by just speaking?"
  • Invoked: Alice falsely offers to join Bob's side if he tells her why she should, and then uses his reasons and motivations to Sherlock Scan him and pick him apart.
  • Exploited: Alice knows that Bob likes doing this to people, so she feeds him false information about herself to goad him into giving an ineffective talk.
  • Defied:
  • Discussed: "Can't you talk her down like you usually do?"
  • Conversed: ???
  • Deconstructed: Bob is affected by the speech... and snaps rather than breaks, throttling Alice while making a speech about how he doesn't care he's pathetic so long as she dies.
  • Reconstructed:

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