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Playing With / The Dulcinea Effect

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Basic Trope: The Hero becomes The Champion of a girl he just met.

  • Straight: Bob meets Alice and immediately falls hard for her, deciding that he'll do anything to protect her.
  • Exaggerated:
  • Downplayed: Alice is one of the girls from Bob's village. After he protects her as a knight, he finds he's attracted to her.
  • Justified:
    • Alice is some sort of celebrity, and Bob is one of The Knights Who Say "Squee!".
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    • Bob only acts as Alice's knight because of a reward.
    • Alice is the daughter of a very powerful king, so Bob decides to get on her good side in order to gain the sovereign's favor.
    • Bob is a bodyguard android. When Alice reactivated it, (either intentionally or not) his guardian mode did so with him, and it dictates he must protect whoever set him on-line.
    • Bob was raised to treat women with the highest respect so it feels natural to him.
    • Bob feels attraction for women because they are beautiful and he feels compassion for those in distress because he is a Nice Guy. Alice is both a woman and in distress; what more need be said?
    • Bob was assigned to be Alice's bodyguard by her relatives and they didn't expect a Bodyguard Crush.
    • Natilie is a Fairy Maiden and has Bob under a spell.
  • Inverted:
  • Gender Inverted: Alice the warrior woman sees Bob, and he reminds her so much of her dead little brother that she is willing to lay down her life to protect him.
  • Subverted: It seems Bob is about to defend Alice, but she makes a bad first impression on him, snapping at him and driving him off.
  • Double Subverted: ...However, he decides she must be a Tsundere and decides to help her out anyway in hopes of winning her favor.
  • Parodied: Falling at least once for a complete stranger is a requirement to be known as a knight.
  • Zig Zagged: Bob meets Alice, who makes a bad first impression by being snappy and surly. Bob gets snappish back, but ends up helping her out, because she's in serious trouble with The Empire and helping her coincides neatly with his interests. His friends suspect there's something more to it, but he denies it all. After they help her out, Alice joins up, and it's eventually revealed that they've fallen for each other after all... but it's left ambiguous whether or not it was Love at First Sight.
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  • Averted: Bob doesn't help Alice because they have just met.
  • Enforced: The executives thought Bob needed a love interest, so they introduced Alice. Because the series is otherwise not about romance, Bob declares his love immediately upon seeing her and vows to protect her.
  • Lampshaded: "Let me see if I get this straight: You've just sworn to protect a girl that you have met a few seconds ago? How many chivalry books have you read?"
  • Invoked: Bob admires knights and wants to become an Ascended Fanboy so he looks for a girl worthy of championing.
  • Exploited: Aware of Bob's tendencies, Alice plays Decoy Damsel in order to get him to play right into her hands.
  • Defied: In an effort to keep Bob to herself, Alice tells Bob about all of Olivia's personality flaws before she introduces them.
  • Discussed: "Greetings, milady. By The Order of Chivalric Tropers, I will be your champion from now on."
  • Conversed: "These Medieval Morons seem to think Love at First Sight is a good enough reason to run off on one Suicide Mission after another. For God's sake, he's never even talked to her face-to-face!"
  • Deconstructed:
    • Bob makes a snap judgment that Alice must be as nice as she looks, only to either be disappointed by her human flaws or ignore them entirely in favor of some idealized image. Alice's irritated at having some stranger declare himself her protector, but decides to take advantage of his kindness anyway.
    • Bob only acts as Alice's knight because he's hoping he'll get laid for it.
  • Reconstructed:
    • Bob immediately falls for Alice, and is willing to accept all of her flaws. Over time, he helps her overcome them (one of them being taking advantage of the kindness of others) and she becomes worthy of his devotion. One of the ways she does so is pointing out truly noble things he "do for her" that he might not do otherwise.
    • Bob only acts as Alice's knight because he's Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life.
  • Played For Laughs: Bob's a bumbling Nice Guy who falls all over himself trying to impress Alice immediately upon meeting her, with little obvious success (at least, to him; it's made clear to the audience that Alice is falling just as hard for him, but is also in serious denial).
  • Played For Drama: Alice is horrified by Bob's decision to fight for her, as she's already having difficulty dealing with The Empire and doesn't want to draw any further attention to herself. Plus, the empire has powerful soldiers, and Bob's just one man; he could wind up getting killed...! Or getting them both killed...!

Back to The Dulcinea Effect.

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