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Playing With / Mistaken for Dying

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Basic Trope: Somebody mistakenly believes that either another person or themselves is dying, usually from a disease.

  • Straight:
    • Alice overhears Bob, who is a doctor, tell Carol that "there's nothing he can do". Alice thinks he means that Carol is dying, but he really meant that she's pregnant and is too far along for an abortion.
    • Alice is allergic to her neighbour's new tree but when she Googles her symptoms, she thinks she has a strange, terminal disease with no known cure.
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  • Exaggerated:
  • Downplayed:
    • Alice overhears Bob the doctor tell Carol that "it looks serious", which makes Alice think that Carol might die, but in reality, she just has a sinus infection that's only serious as far as sinus infections go.
    • Alice Googles her allergy symptoms and gets results related to several diseases and conditions, a few of which are terminal, so she thinks she might be dying.
  • Justified:
    • Carol doesn't really look pregnant because she's tall or wide or already kind of fat or wears baggy clothes or a combination, so Alice wouldn't guess that she was pregnant by hearing a doctor say that there was nothing they could do. Besides, she's heard that line in medical dramas and knows the implications.
    • Alice is a bit paranoid.
  • Inverted:
  • Subverted:
    • It later turns out that Carol really is dying.
    • It later turns out that even though Alice doesn't have that disease she found on The Internet, she really does have a disease.
  • Double Subverted:
    • Correction— Carol is having a miscarriage.
    • ... Namely, a cold.
  • Parodied:
  • Zigzagged:
    • Alice overhears Bob tells Carol that there's nothing he can do. Alice assumes Carol must be dying, but then Carol informs Alice that she's not dying, but is pregnant. Alice assumes that Bob meant Carol was about to have a miscarriage, but it turns out that the baby will be fine, Carol just wanted an abortion but it was too late for that.
    • Alice "diagnoses" herself with leukaemia, then a cold, then the flu, then allergies, then...
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  • Averted: Nobody mistakes anyone for dying.
  • Enforced: To teach An Aesop about not jumping to conclusions.
  • Invoked: Dave pranks Alice to make her believe that she or Carol is dying.
  • Exploited:
    • Alice is being very nice to Carol while she's "dying", which includes giving her a lot of money. Carol uses this money to buy supplies for her soon-to-be baby.
    • Alice decides to be more productive while she's "dying".
  • Defied: Alice asks Bob directly what he means by "There's nothing I can do", or asks what her symptoms mean.
  • Discussed: "Yesterday, my neighbour thought she/I was dying!"
  • Conversed: "Is she gonna think she's dying now?"
  • Implied:
  • Deconstructed:
  • Reconstructed:
  • Played for Laughs:
    • Carol has no idea why Alice is acting so awkward around her.
    • Alice's "dying wishes" are completely ludicrous.
  • Played for Drama:
    • Carol mistakenly thinks Alice doesn't like the idea of her being pregnant.
    • Alice seriously injures herself while doing something risky on her "last day".

Back to Mistaken for Dying.

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