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Basic Trope: Overly genericizing a description, line of dialogue, or thing's name to the point of resembling a blank template.
  • Straight: The town of Town's Name has a welcome sign that says "Welcome Sign: witty slogan for Town's Name".
  • Exaggerated: Everyone talks like an unfilled Mad-Lib.
  • Downplayed:
  • Justified: Town's Name was founded by an overly Literal-Minded robot.
  • Inverted: The description of the town is overly specialized to the slang of the town—"Tropesburg: BUPKISsed YKTTW Wicks!"
  • Subverted: The sign that appears to say "Town's Name" is covered in vegetation. When brushed aside, the sign reads: "This town's name is..."
  • Double Subverted: The full message turns out to be "This town's name is Town's Name."
  • Parodied: The name of the town is "Just input 'Town's Name'. I'll edit it later."
  • Zig-Zagged: One resident reveals that the sign is outdated since they changed the name. The new name is ... "City's Name".
  • Averted: "Welcome to Tropesburg, where your life being ruined is the least of your worries!"
  • Enforced: The Meddling Executives genuinely believe that their target demographic is dumb enough to the point where they won't realize the sign hanging over the entrance to the town is supposed to be the name of the town unless they use it to explain itself.
  • Lampshaded: Who Names Their Kid "Dude"?
  • Invoked: Someone names a town "Town's Name".
  • Exploited: Alice goes to Town's Name to hide from a Corrupt Bureaucrat chasing after her, as he wouldn't think of taking the name written on the forms he forces people who know where she's gone to to fill out literally.
  • Defied: Bob suggests naming the new town "Town's Name" but is voted down by his fellow councillors in committee and/or the people in a plebiscite.
  • Discussed: "We're going to Town's Name." "That can't be its real name." "Believe it or not, it is." "That's got to be just about the Stupidest Thing I've Ever Heard."
  • Conversed: "Did the creators of the show forget to fill in their template or something?"
  • Played for Laughs: The sign is praised as the most complex and interesting town sign in the universe.
  • Played for Drama: Cut to the mayor of Town's Name crying in his office due to his lack of creativity.
  • Played for Horror: Anyone who reads the sign is magically controlled into submission.

Courtesy line returning you to [Trope Name].

Basic Trope: A trope (a common convention that you can expect to show up in certain works).
  • Straight: The trope is played out normally.
  • Exaggerated: The trope is played to a larger extent than normal.
  • Downplayed: The trope is played to a smaller extent than normal.
  • Justified: The trope has a logical In-Universe explanation.
  • Inverted: The trope happens the other way around.
  • Gender-Inverted: A gender-specific trope is used on the opposite gender.
  • Role-Inverted: A role-specific trope is used on the opposite role.
  • Subverted: The trope is expected to be played straight, but isn't.
  • Double Subverted: ...until later, when it is.
  • Parodied: The trope is mocked, spoofed, or played straight to ridiculous levels for specific humour value.
  • Zig-Zagged: The trope is simply "played with" in another way.
  • Averted: The trope is not used, implied, or mentioned at all, and there may or may not be a situation where it would be possible.
  • Enforced: Something in Real Life that causes Executive Meddling and/or the authors to use the trope.
  • Lampshaded: A Genre Savvy character calls attention to the trope as it's occurring or after it has occurred, then carries on.
  • Invoked: A Genre Savvy character sets up a situation where the trope can occur.
  • Exploited: A Genre Savvy character takes advantage of a trope, or the fact that the trope will occur, possibly — but not necessarily — Invoking it in the process.
  • Defied: A Genre Savvy character tries to prevent a trope from happening.
  • Discussed: Genre Savvy characters talk about the trope in a situation where it is likely to happen.
  • Conversed: Genre Savvy characters talk about the trope in a Show Within a Show.
  • Implied: The trope isn't shown, but the audience is indirectly led to believe that it happened off-screen.
  • Deconstructed: The trope is played in a way that shows various logical and moral problems with the trope as normally played.
  • Reconstructed: The trope is played straight, but with the problems raised by the deconstruction dealt with or addressed.
  • Played for Laughs: The trope is played straight in a comedic way.
  • Played for Drama: The trope is played in a melodramatic or serious way.
  • Played for Horror: The trope is played in a horrifying way.

Another courtesy line returning you to [Trope Name].

Basic Trope: [A one-sentence summary of the trope... stolen from Laconic Wiki]
  • Straight: Example of the trope using bizarre names on the basis that Alice and Bob is too boring.
    • Unnecessary additional straight example that's pretty much just a rewording of the above. Failure to fix the indentation after adding another example.
    • Example using two names that are almost identical, which makes it impossible to keep track of who is who. (The indentation is still not fixed.)
    • Example using Alice and Bob for the umpteenth time, grating on the nerves of the long-time Playing With Wiki users who are sick of seeing them everywhere.
    • Example using Alice and Bob even though such mundane names sound silly or don't make sense in context.
    • Example using names like Alice, Bob, Charlotte, Daniel and Elise, even though it could benefit from Meaningful Names.
    • Example of a Morality Trope using Hiro and Emperor Evulz as characters.
    • Example introducing half a dozen characters who won't serve any purpose in the rest of this page.
    • The trope being Inverted, but only a certain aspect of it that nobody pays attention to.
    • Example using Funny Animals, always linking to the same four or five animal-related tropes.
    • Example from a fictional work with "Trope" in its title.
    • Example that happens to resemble an example from a real work, so someone decided to pothole the whole thing to that work.
    • Actual example from a real work, because This Troper thought they were being clever, or just wanted to Entry Pimp the page.
    • Random example that has nothing to do with the trope or anything else on the page. It's only here because whoever created the Playing With page copied and pasted another Playing With page instead of just using the template, and then forgot to replace (or at least remove) this example.
  • Exaggerated:
    • An instruction to See Parodied, even though the point of this page is to point out the differences between them, and that examples should never point to other examples.
    • The trope played to at least two orders of magnitude more than you will ever see.
  • Up to Eleven: An attempt to transform a trope using a different trope, complete with a pothole to said different trope.
  • Serial Escalation: Even more extreme version of the Up to Eleven example.
  • Beyond the Impossible: Attempt to push the Serial Escalation even further than the above by misusing Beyond the Impossible (or using its old definition, which is redundant since that definition now belongs to Serial Escalation).
  • Downplayed:
    • The trope played perfectly straight, but with the addition of words like "a bit" and "slightly".
    • The trope being Zig-Zagged.
  • Justified: An excuse for why the trope makes sense in the works of This Troper's favorite author.
  • Inverted:
  • Gender-Inverted:
    • Literally just the straight example with names and pronouns swapped.
    • A gender inversion of a trope that has nothing to do with gender.
  • Subverted:
    • Something that is Not a Subversion...
    • An additional example with no Double Subverted counterpart, thus breaking up the paired ellipses.
  • Double Subverted:
    • ...and leads to the trope being played perfectly straight.
    • The trope is Subverted. However, a detail not mentioned in the Subverted example means it's not actually Subverted.
  • Parodied: An instruction to See Exaggerated.
    • The trope being Played for Laughs.
    • The trope being played straight, but with some degree of Poke the Poodle thrown in.
    • The trope being Lampshaded, but less subtly than normal.
    • The trope being Inverted in a humorous way.
    • Claim that the trope cannot be parodied because it is already (supposedly) a parody of another trope. Clearly, a parody of a parody is not permissible and would cause the universe to collapse on itself.
    • This trope is really, really exaggerated, but none of the characters notices.
    • This trope is really, really downplayed, but the characters act like it's exaggerated.
    • This trope is in a show some characters are watching, and they make fun of it.
    • Statement that the work this trope appears in is being satirical. No specifics on the example itself.
  • Zig Zagged (or Zig-Zagged, or Zigzagged, or even ZigZagged. Who cares?):
    • A confusing mess that would justify any professional writer being taken out and shot.
    • The work sometimes plays the trope straight, and other times it does not.
    • Several played with versions of this trope, copy-pasted from other parts of this page.
    • ...a direct continuation of the Double Subverted example that subverts it again.
    • It is difficult to tell whether or not this trope is being subverted.
    • The trope being Downplayed.
    • The trope being Double Subverted, except it's not split into two examples, so it's Zig-Zagged.
  • Averted:
    • Metaphysical proposal of a universe in which the trope's existence would be logically impossible.
    • The trope being Inverted.
    • The trope being avoided in a work that has no reason to use it in the first place.
    • The setup for the Straight example being removed.
  • Enforced: The trope being played perfectly straight, but with emphasis on the fact that the writers knew they were doing it.
    • The trope being Invoked.
    • The trope played straight, but with the writers depicted as Single Issue Wonks who feel the need to complain about something.
    • An executive telling the writers to play this trope straight in order to connect with their target audience.
    • An instruction to See Justified, meaning someone managed to mess up the definition of at least one of the transformations.
  • Lampshaded:
    • "A description of the trope being played perfectly straight, but in quotation marks!"
    • "Gee, Bob, you just showcased this trope!"
  • Invoked:
  • Exploited: The trope being Invoked.
  • Defied:
  • Discussed:
    • "The trope actually being Conversed!"
    • "The trope actually being Lampshaded!"
    • "Lol, the trope is dumb and unrealistic!"
  • Conversed:
    • "More of the same, proving that This Troper thinks all three are the exact same thing!"
    • A direct reply to the discussed example above.
    • "Lol, the trope in this show we're watching is dumb and unrealistic!"
    • A fictional Caustic Critic complaining about the trope.
  • Implied: The trope explicitly not happening, but someone with a chip on their shoulder wants to complain about it anyway.
  • Deconstructed:
    • The trope played perfectly straight, but with several horrible twists that put the characters through hell and give unwanted insight into the darkest recesses of This Troper's psyche.
    • Some mildly bad thing happens because of the trope.
    • The audience reacting negatively to this trope.
    • The trope being played straight in This Troper's favourite dark and edgy work.
    • The trope being Defied by a Knight of Cerebus.
    • The trope causing a character who demonstrates it to have a horrible social life.
    • The trope being Subverted, Averted, Inverted or otherwise Not a Deconstruction.
  • Reconstructed:
    • The trope played perfectly straight, but with lashings of Tastes Like Diabetes and/or Glurge.
    • The audience decided they like the trope after all.
    • As Deconstructed, but in the end Everything Turns Out Just Fine — even if the deconstructed trope isn't reinforced.
    • A "reconstruction" of an aversion, inversion or subversion.
  • Untwisted:
  • Plotted a Good Waste:
    • A bunch of ???s because nobody knows what to do with this category.
    • A random transformation because no one really knows what this means.
    • The trope is done on purpose by the creators, even though the trope is normally done intentionally.
    • A %% at the start because the Playing With page was created before this category was removed from the Playing With template in 2015,note  and no one bothered to delete the whole line.
  • Played for Laughs: An instruction to See Parodied.
    • The trope being mocked by This Troper's favourite comedian.
    • Claim that this trope cannot be played for laughs, because it is already comedic.
  • Played for Drama:
    • An instruction to See Deconstructed, despite the fact that they're entirely different things.note 
    • The character(s) is/are Driven to Suicide.note  Bonus points if it was triggered by something relatively mundane/not-worthy, therefore coming up as extremely jarring or even darkly humorous.
    • Claim that this trope cannot be played for drama, because it is already dramatic.
  • Played for Horror:
    • A %% at the start because nobody cares about this category.note 
    • The character(s) is/are driven to murder someone over the trope.note  Bonus points if it was triggered by something relatively mundane/not-worthy, therefore coming up as extremely jarring or even darkly humorous.
    • Claim that this trope cannot be played for horror, because it is already scary.
  • Everted: No one knows what this means, but someone thought it'd be clever to add it.
  • Obscure transformation that This Troper probably made up: Example that couldn't be shoehorned into any of the above.

A link to [Trope Name] shoehorned into a vaguely self-referential joke.

Alternative Title(s): Trope Name Injokes


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


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