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Playing With / Green Rocks

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Basic Trope: Applied Phlebotinum that can do almost anything if it will move the plot along.

  • Straight: Phlebotinum crystals do a different thing Once per Episode in order to keep the plots varied.
  • Exaggerated: Almost everything that happens in the plot is the result of some strange new power the phlebotinum crystals have displayed, occurring several times an episode.
  • Downplayed: Phlebotinum crystals show up in a few earlier episodes as useful for curing a disease, and then in one other episode a couple seasons later as the Monster of the Week's weakness, but otherwise their powers are fairly consistent.
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  • Justified: Phlebotinum crystals are notoriously unstable and their effect is almost impossible to predict.
  • Inverted: There are many different types of phlebotinum in the series, but they all have the same effect.
  • Subverted: The main characters try to use phlebotinum crystals for a variety of purposes ... but none works except for the phlebotinum's main function.
  • Double Subverted: ...Until the main characters discover a new, enhanced type of phlebotinum crystal that actually does all those things.
  • Parodied: The main characters attempt to solve any and all troubles they encounter, from supervillains to flat tires, with the application of phlebotinum crystals, only to find the rocks failing miserably to do anything truly useful.
  • Zig-Zagged:
    • Phlebotinum crystals solve some problems, do nothing for others, and make still others worse.
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    • Alice can use the phlebotinum crystals, but Bob can't.
  • Averted: Phlebotinum crystals do only one thing, and the plot is mostly driven by a variety of other things instead.
  • Enforced: The show is very low-budget and couldn't afford many props, so they have to get the most out of the phlebotinum crystals.
  • Lampshaded: "Is there anything these phlebotinum crystals can't do? It's almost a bit ridiculous."
  • Invoked: Phlebotinum Inc. designs phlebotinum crystals to serve as many purposes as possible, even widely different ones.
  • Exploited: The characters learn how to make their own phlebotinum crystals.
  • Defied: The characters feel that the phlebotinum crystals are interfering too much with their lives and get rid of them to free themselves from dependency on them.
  • Discussed: "If I had phlebotinum crystals, I'd use them as my own Philosopher's Stone."
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  • Conversed: "...I can predict all this show's plots now. The answer is always 'phlebotinum crystals.' This is getting a bit boring."
  • Deconstructed: Phlebotinum crystals may be a source of great power, but their effects are so unpredictable that it's very impractical or dangerous to use them.
  • Reconstructed: The overarching story involves the characters trying to discover a process to refine phlebotinum crystals, tailoring individual crystals for specific purposes to prevent them from experiencing energy fluctuations. This process is eventually found, allowing new derived technologies to be created that are convenient and reliable.
  • Implied: Whenever the characters need something, they grab their phlebotinum.
  • Played for Laughs: Comically inclined people use phlebotinum to make their jokes funnier.
  • Played for Drama: Alice and Bob are dependent on their phlebotinum, and when they can't use it for whatever reason, they angst about everything.
  • Played for Horror: The main functions of phlebotinum are simply to kill and maim innocent people in disgusting ways.

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