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Playing With / Subculture of the Week

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Basic Trope: A social subculture is reduced to a stereotype.

  • Straight: Seamus O'Taku spends all his money on anime and manga, sleeps with a body-pillow emblazoned with a naked Sailor Moon, subsists on pocky and ramen, and is a virgin who still lives with his mother well into his 40's.
  • Exaggerated: Seamus does all of the above, plus wearing cosplay to go buy milk and bread, working gratuitous Japanese into every conversation, rarely showering, and being heavily into lolicon and/or tentacle hentai.
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  • Downplayed: While Seamus does appear at first glance to be the stereotypical otaku, once others get to know him better they discover that he does have other interests, even though anime and manga are his favorites.
  • Justified: Seamus is mentally ill.
  • Inverted: Seamus O'Taku is, because of his fondness for anime and other geekdom, the Only Sane Man in the show.
  • Subverted:
    • Seamus likes anime, but leads a functional and productive life.
    • Alice And Bob: The Series airs an episode where it looks like Will B. Victim, the Victim of the Week, was killed because of his love of arcade games (with all of the Anti-Escapism Aesop pontificating that it will involve)... and the Halfway Plot Switch is that he was killed for a completely different reason (he saw some other guy getting mugged and had to die). The subculture that he's involved with, at best, gets a passing mention.
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    • Seamus is an otaku who spends a lot of money on geeky collections, but later on, we see him on a date with his girlfriend, Emmeline.
  • Double Subverted:
    • But he is mentioned as being in financial trouble, or facing the threat of a divorce or breakup, because he allocates all his money towards his geeky collections rather than food, rent, bills, etc.
    • The third-act switch is that the mugger that killed Will did it because Will was a better arcade player and the fact that he steals people's money to afford the massive quantities of quarters it takes to practice and Will ran into his latest mugging and thus became "He Knows Too Much" fodder was a coincidence too good to pass up in order to eliminate some competition. Once everything is explained the Schiff One-Liner is used to decry how silly it is to be so addicted to a dumb-ass subculture.
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    • Emmeline mentions in passing in one scene that Seamus loves to place her in a bungee rig and make her pretend that she is Mikasa Ackerman as foreplay. Emmeline is perfectly okay with this, but the reactions of everybody else in the room imply that they are creeped out by this revelation.
  • Parodied: Seamus has a very weird love for Hello Kitty, even for a four-year-old.
  • Zig Zagged: Seamus at first finds anime and manga incomprehensible, but then gets a job teaching English in Japan, where he discovers several anime series that he likes. He then immerses himself in otaku culture to the point where it becomes an obsession before his friends arrange an "intervention" to bring him back to reality. They accomplish this, but after Seamus breaks his leg and has to spend a whole week lying on his sofa playing X-Box he develops an equally unhealthy obsession for battle royale games, and when they wean him out of that they discover that he makes money on the side writing Tabletop RPG material by request for a... shall we say... unusual (and maybe unsavory) clientele...
  • Averted: Seamus isn't part of any particular subculture, unless Office Drone or "average joe" counts.
  • Enforced: Acceptable Targets
  • Lampshaded: Even though Seamus lives in his parents' basement because he can't afford an apartment of his own, he mentions to his friends that since he doesn't have to pay rent, he has more money to spend on anime merchandise.
  • Implied: Seamus is the fifth man interrogated by the cops about the horrifying crime of the week when his Embarrassing Ring Tone (Opening #1 of Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, "Just Communication") goes off (a similar scene happened before, but the ringtone was Al Hirt's "Flight Of The Bumblebee" (s.k.s. the theme of The Green Hornet)). While Seamus is sheepish about the cell phone going off in the middle of an interrogation (as did the other man), the cops showcase even more loathing of Seamus' ring tone than they did for the other man's.
  • Invoked: While cosplaying as his favorite anime character, Otaku-Man, Seamus goes to a nearby bank to make a withdrawal only to run into a bank robber. After stopping the robbery, Seamus explains to the police that he stopped the robbery because "that's what Otaku-Man would do."
  • Exploited: A lady friend of Seamus', finding him attractive, decides to dress up as a character from one of his favorite Harem Genre or Magical Girlfriend anime in order to get his attention.
  • Defied: Seamus decides to branch out a bit more and find some interests and friends that don't necessarily have anything to do with anime, manga, Japan, etc.
  • Discussed: "Isn't this the part where you guys are going to treat me like I confessed to be the pedophiliac John Kramer rip-off you've been looking for, and badger me with every kind of vocal type of Police Brutality act and 'get yourself a normal life, you weirdo!' speech under the sun, just because I said I like to play Dungeons & Dragons?"
  • Conversed: Seamus' best friend Terry calls up to ask if Seamus watched the episode of their favorite Crime and Punishment Series last night. The two then discuss how the writers showed the guest otaku character as a typical geek instead of a real person, and how the writers could have done better that episode.
  • Deconstructed: The series on which Seamus appears, as a Law & Order rip off, goes out of its way to show Seamus as the most disfunctional sleazebag this side of a pedophile (and probably will end up looking worse that the actual pedophile that is the Monster of the Week), and overall preaches that, if Mr. Red Herring over there could get his head out of the clouds for a few minutes, the world would be a better place.
    • On a more meta level, the show becomes mocked due to failing to recognize that not all people of a certain subculture are like this.
  • Reconstructed: The series makes it clear that not all nerds and geeks are like this, and that most are, in fact, quite happy, productive, and well-adjusted people.
  • Played For Laughs: After Jerk Jock Seamus O'Taku admits to like to watch Dragon Ball Z in an episode of Alice And Bob: The Series, the episode that follows is essentially a Whole Plot Reference of Revenge of the Nerds with Seamus and the local Dragon Ball Z cosplay group being the "jocks" and Bob and his friends (who like "My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic") being the "nerds".
  • Played For Drama: Seamus O'Taku appears in a Very Special Episode with an Anti-Escapism Aesop of Alice And Bob: The Series that is essentially ripping off Requiem for a Dream and switching out drugs for an obsession to obtain the highest score in a Call Of Duty rip-off. Absolutely nothing else is changed, and what follows is a forty-five minute vision of a man destroying his mental and physical health and what few relationships he has just to get fifteen minutes of fame in a subject very few people give a shit about.
  • Played for Horror: Seamus O'Taku is a Theme Serial Killer and his "theme" is to scope out conventions for people who hate his show, kidnap then, drag them to his own reproduction of Room 101, apply 2 + Torture = 5 until they proclaim their love for the show, and then kill them.

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