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  • Kanade Tachibana in Angel Beats! fails to express that disappearing isn't necessarily a bad thing. Bad enough that it's caused a war with a nearly 100% death toll for all its participants, regularly. It's a good thing nobody stays dead there.
  • Another: Seriously, you couldn't tell the New Transfer Student that the entire class's lives depended on ignoring a student's existence so you could avoid an evil ghost curse BEFORE he started attending class and tried making friends with said ignored student and not trust you because you chose to be threateningly vague about it until THREE PEOPLE DIED and it became obvious that the "Charm" was no longer an option...
    • Of course Mei acting ambiguously and not letting anyone know her long lost twin sister was actually the first victim in the curse didn't help things either. Nor did Akazawa blaming her for everything since it seemed that at that point in the anime/manga mostly everyone was so past the Despair Event Horizon that they were willing to agree and...well, things just got worse after that...
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  • This is one of the central themes in The Anthem of the Heart. Although it's seen most clearly in Jun's Character Development against her muteness, it's seen in the other characters too. The baseball team is underperforming because nobody is dealing with the tension that's arisen between the injured Daiki and the new ace, and Natsuki and Takumi's relationship ground to a stop because they didn't talk about the problems they underwent in middle school.
  • In Appleseed Ex Machina the government advises the general public to hand over very handy Connexus-devices by saying that they've been "deemed harmful." Instead of simply saying, "These devices turn you into insane cyber-zombies and may force the police to shoot you." Needless to say, few listen.
  • Holy crap, Berserk. This is probably one of the biggest themes of the manga, in that Griffith's downward spiral, leading ultimately to the Eclipse, the merging of the worlds and all that other stuff could all have been avoided had he and Guts ever simply talked things out with one another. The phrase "the world's most tragic misunderstanding" has been used on more than a few occasions to describe the series, and it's pretty accurate.
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  • Most trouble in Binbou Shimai Monogatari stems from the two sisters simply not talking with each other about what's bothering them.
  • Bleach:
    • A filler villain spent the majority of his lifetime becoming a captain so that he could kill Yamamoto for killing his father, spending countless years researching and acquiring a bakkoto, which his father had told him about in his last words, and he assumed Yamamoto had killed him for using one to become more powerful. Then it turns out his father's last words were "Beware the Bakkoto," telling his son to STAY AWAY FROM the things which had killed him. Because Amagai didn't hear ONE WORD, he completely misinterpreted the meaning of his father's last words, and died. Yep. Furthermore, when he confronts Yamamoto about this, Yamamoto doesn't bother to justify his actions and explain what really happened.
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    • Another filler villain got his master sealed away for a hundred or so years because their relationship deteriorated, causing him not to be able to hear his call, and come to his side. SoMuramasa spent a century and a half trying to recruit a force to free his master Kouga.. Only to be stabbed to death by said master because the fact that Kouga was a Jerkass to him before he got sealed away meant that Muramasa couldn't hear him calling him. Again, yep.
    • During the Fullbring arc, half of the problems could have been avoided if Ishida had shared his suspicions about Ginjo earlier. Ryuuken even calls them out on not sharing information. Although he's the one to talk, considering the number this trope's done on his relationship with his kid...
      • Really almost ALL the problems could be solved with proper communication. Ichigo never really tries to explain to his friends that Tsukishima isn't what he appears to be, instead he has emotional breakdowns and attacks him in front of everyone (every bit appearing as insane as they accuse him of acting). Ichigo's father and Urahara never tell him that they're working on a way to restore his powers, instead just having secret back alley meetings behind his back giving him every reason to feel paranoid and isolated. And one of the only major problems that DOESN'T come to pass, that Soul Society has been secretly keeping tabs on him, comes out well BECAUSE Ukitake let Ichigo know about it ahead of time so Ichigo could reciprocate with a little trust.
  • Code Geass' Lelouch, in his arrogance and tendency towards accepting inordinate amounts of responsibility and refusing to make excuses, is guilty of this multiple times. The best (or worst) example is when he decides against telling Suzaku the truth about geassing Euphemia; instead of telling him it was an accident caused by Mode Lock, he instead accepts full responsibility for it. Suzaku can tell he is lying, but the damage has already been done: Schneizel had Kanon secretly spy on the conversation, and later plays the admission by itself when meeting with the Black Knights, which, along with some other questionable evidence presented in such a way to cause distrust, lead the Black Knights to turn on their leader. This also seems to be lampshaded in the Compilation Movie's take on this, where the Black Knights try reasoning with him to just tell the truth instead of putting on an act.
    • Even earlier than that, Lelouch and Euphemia's critical lack of communication results in the situation becoming much worse than it needed to be. Lelouch assumed that he was being undermined, rather than understanding that Euphemia, caring for Lelouch, Cornelia and Nunnally, couldn't accept the idea of Cornelia and Lelouch potentially killing one another, deciding that forcing Lelouch to surrender would be better for Nunnally. She does try to communicate to him beforehand, but their meeting is cut short, and Euphemia no longer has the option to delay. When she actually gets the time to tell him, he agrees with her sentiment, but she has only barely avoided being mind controlled... and Lelouch has already displayed signs of falling into Mode Lock, leading to a lot of unfortunate and unnecessary deaths immediately afterwards.
  • In A Cruel God Reigns, Jeremy tries to tell Sandra, Ian, and William a couple different times that Greg is abusing him. However, due mostly to Cannot Spit It Out, his efforts are trampled and he eventually tampers with Greg's car and kills him, and by accident, Sandra.
  • Many of the skits in Daily Lives of High School Boys could have been resolved in a far less humiliating way if the character(s) involved had actually spoken out instead of Internal Monologue-ing for five or so minutes. The frequency of this theme is actually one of the main points of that brought the suspicion for the author being the "Bomber Grape," as most of the latter's Touhou comics use it for Running Gags.
  • Danganronpa 3. Seiko and Ruruka were great friends, but following their expulsion from Hope's Peak Academy, both got completely different ideas of one another and never spoke to each other again. Come the events of Side:Future, they have a huge fight, and they both died before they could work things out.
  • DARLING in the FRANXX:
    • In episode 3, the Plantation 13 squad was told there was only one klaxosaur they needed to kill. There were dozens of them, which they weren't expecting. The only reason there wasn't a Total Party Wipe was because backup arrived.
    • In episode 14, both Hiro and Zero-Two want to talk after the former almost kill the latter and the two learned they met before. However, they are both stopped by Ichigo and the Plantation 13 Squad. After Ichigo and others finally decided to let Zero-Two see Hiro, he isn't in the hospital room and Zero-Two assume they tricked her and attacks them.
  • In Demon King Daimao, this is Junko's Fatal Flaw; in her Establishing Character Moment, she physically assaults Akuto because she saw him with her grandmother and just jumped to conclusions that he was trying to mug her. After Akuto is prophecised to be the next Demon King, Junko alternates between being friendly with him and just trying to kill him because she constantly misinterprets his attempts to do good as being evil and rarely, if ever, gives him a chance to explain. Her tendency to do this is even lampshaded in episode 3: after Keena causes the lynch mob Junko assembled to turn on Junko as well, Junko insists that it's all a misunderstanding, only for Akuto to inform her that he's been trying to tell her the exact same thing all along, and the mob is unlikely to listen to her any more than she did to him.
  • Detective Conan:
    • One case had an injured American tourist recuperating in a Japanese household and falling in love with a young woman. Because of a mouth injury, at first he could only communicate by writing out Japanese phrases phonetically. As he was leaving, the young woman asked if he loved her, and he wrote down the word "shine", referring to his earlier words that he wanted a "shining bride", but which she quite naturally interpreted as "shi-ne," which happens to be Japanese for "die". The woman committed suicide after he left, and when he came back he ended up murdering her father and a family friend in revenge. What an Idiot!.
    • Another one: A manager murders the lead singer of her rock band because he was an abusive Jerkass. It turns out that the singer was in love with the manager, but was upset over her getting rhinoplasty because he liked her the way she was. His rude behavior was him lashing out when he was really mad at himself for inspiring her to change herself just to please him.
    • Only barely averted in a more recent story about a wife who tends to go overboard and her fed-up husband who thought she was ruining his relationships with his workmates by emailing them with her suspicions she was actually thanking them for taking him out on camping trips but to be careful because of his rare blood type; because they didn't want to accidentally hurt him they stopped asking him out. Unfortunately he didn't realize this until after he tricked her into attacking him to cure his hiccups so he could kill her. Fortunately she survived and even forgave him — after all they're going to be parents!
    • A woman killed her sister because she stole her boyfriend. Turns out the boyfriend was actually the one who initiated everything by falling for his girlfriend's sister and telling the sister to pretend that she was the one who initiated things, not the guy.
  • Given the White and Gray Morality of Digimon Tamers, a lot of problems could have been averted if the various groups and factions put aside their prejudices, stopped pointing fingers and calling each other "evil" and just sat down, come clean and talk rationally about their problems and perspectives, it's the driving force in the series, while perhaps things wouldn't be perfect, between the combined might of Hypnos, the Tamers, the Moster Makers and the Sovereings, they surely could have come with a better resolution than the Cosmic Horror Story they go through.
    • The Sovereings create Calumon as the Anthropomorphic Personification of the Light of Digievolution, but no one bothers to say what he/she really is to anyone, including Calumon themself, until near the end.
    • The Sovereings send the Deva to literally kidnap Calumon by (excessive) force without telling anyone why they need Calumon so badly, simply because they distrust humans and their Digimon (not completely unjustified). This one in particular is what DRIVES the entire half of the series.
    • Hypnos, represented by Yamaki, never tells the Tamers why they oppose Digimon because they're kids, as a result they come across to the protagonists as a Nebulous Evil Organisation.
  • Dragon Ball Z:
    • During the Cell Saga , Goku completely fails to explain his plan for defeating Cell. Had he taken a moment during the several days of prep time that Cell gave them to explain that he intended for Gohan to fight Cell, someone - Piccolo, maybe, or even Gohan himself - could have told him just why this was a bad idea. Yes, Gohan was the only one strong enough to have a chance against Cell, but if Goku had been a bit more open from the beginning, at the very least he might have taken the fight more seriously. Instead, we ended up with the fiasco that resulted in his death and very nearly resulted in his son's.
      • Keep in mind, he didn't exactly drag Gohan towards Cell so that he could fight him. Also, his interaction with Gohan had the latter doubting whether he could take Cell, so Goku was at least aware of Gohan's self-doubt. He chose to assuage his son of it with his support, and some would say, a great deal of pressure. It wasn't just Piccolo yelling at him that got him to consider it might be a bad idea. After all, he and the others were calling him out on it throughout Gohan's fight with Cell. He had to see for himself that his son was in real trouble for it all to sink in.
    • For that matter, Bulma apparently didn't think it was important to tell 16 that she removed the nuke inside his body. This comes back to bite them when he tries to self-destruct in order to kill Cell and can't because the bomb was removed.
    • During the Buu Saga, the Supreme Kai has a very bad habit of neglecting to tell the Z-Fighters certain information until after it's needed, such as Dabura's Stone Spit or certain details on Babidi's fighters. Most notably, he completely fails to mention Buu's absorption abilities.
    • Minor comedic example. When Chi-Chi sees Goku and Gohan as Super Saiyans for the first time, she freaks out and gets pissed, accusing them of turning into Japanese Delinquents and dyeing their hair. For some reason, they don't even attempt to explain or demonstrate that it's a transformation, just awkwardly say they haven't dyed their hair.
    • As recently revealed in Dragon Ball Minus, the circumstances of the Saiyan Saga come from this: Goku's parents sent him to Earth under Frieza's nose because they suspected he was planning something bad for the Saiyan race when he had them all recalled to their homeworld (in fact he had recalled them to kill as many as possible when he blew up the planet) and Earth held no interest to Frieza, and told Raditz (who was away with Vegeta, and thus survived because the Prince decided to ignore the recall order) where they had sent him but neglected to tell him why. So Raditz guessed his little brother had been sent to Earth to conquer it on Frieza's orders, and we all know what happened when he arrived and found that Goku had gone native.
    • During the Red Ribbon Army saga of the original series, Goku neglects to inform Bulma and Krillin that the Army is hunting him down; it's not until General Blue's crew ambushes them at the bottom of the ocean do they realize that they have a notoriously bloodthirsty army pursuing them. Goku is even called out on this, but merely responds with the ol' "you never asked me" excuse; it doesn't matter if they asked you or not, if a bunch of scary men are out for your blood and chasing you down then it's probably a good idea to let your buddies know that piece of information as well.
  • Elfen Lied is also a noteworthy offender. The good guys have almost enough information to explain the whole plot and background story, but never get the idea that any of their friends might be interested in their personal side adventures.
  • Eureka Seven's Holland. If you take a shot for every time he conceals important information from other people (especially Renton), don't expect to be awaken by the end of any given episode. No, nobody necessarily dies because of it, but he was the source of much pain and frustration for everyone just because he wouldn't talk.
    • Possibly one of the best examples: at a point in the series, Eureka tries to "return to the earth" due to her Coralian nature; after that, her body goes through mild modifications and she gets comatose. Nobody wants to tell Renton that Eureka is not human, so nobody tells him anything. This reaches the stupid level when Holland decides to go on a LFO to find a priest who could help her. Renton practically begs for him to tell him what's happening to Eureka. Any normal person would simply say, "Eureka's sick. Rare disease. Gonna get a doctor". Holland, on the other hand, goes "SHUT UP, BRAT!" and punches Renton in the face. Smooth.
      • It's even Lampshaded in Super Robot Wars Z, with several of the other characters (including Garrod, amusingly enough) calling Holland out for his douchebaggery after Renton leaves.
    • Dewey and Dominic go the opposite way. Dominic delivers a report on Gekko State, specifically detailing Renton becoming Eureka's partner. Even after Dominic stresses the importance of his report Dewey either never receives or never reads the report because it wasn't deemed important enough. This massively comes back to bite them in the ass.
  • In Fairy Tail, Lucy, on her way home from the guild, encounters her father Jude, who initially comes off as a stalker. Jude then reveals that he lost his fortune, and asks Lucy for 100,000 Jewels (since 1 jewel equals 1 yen, that's roughly $1,000 USD). Lucy, who's clearly unwilling in addition to being unable to give him that money, accuses him of being an Entitled Bastard, since they'd parted on bad terms the last time they saw each other, resulting in them parting ways on bitter terms once again. It later turns out that Jude thought that was the going rate to take the carriage to his new job, but having to walk saves Jude from being taken hostage by a dark guild and gives him time to think about his actions enough to apologize to Lucy.
  • In Fate/Zero, if Kariya had only bothered to explain to Tokiomi why giving Sakura to Zouken Matou was a horrible, unforgivable idea, rather than just ranting semi-incoherently and attacking, he might have managed to get an ally in seeking to free Sakura from Zouken as soon as possible, rather than ending up with both of them dead (albeit one by a third party) and Sakura in Zouken's hands for another ten years at minimum.
    • On the other side, when Tokiomi explained his reasons for giving Sakura away, he did so in the most condescending way possible that made it seem like he knew what was happening to Sakura, particularly when he mentioned that he was fine with the possibility of Rin and Sakura possibly having to fight and kill each other in the next Grail War, which also gives the impression that he doesn't care about either of his daughters, only his family's legacy. In addition, Tokiomi could have done a better job at understanding why Kariya was so angry to begin with, especially when there were pretty obvious red flags waving right in his face such as Kariya's condition, his verbal anger and disgust towards Tokiomi and Zouken, or even the reason why Kariya left the Matou family to begin with. Had either man bothered to understand the other's point of view, it would have saved Sakura years of suffering.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist, Hohenheim could have said, for instance, "Alphonse. Edward. Dad has something very important to do and might be gone for a long time. Take care of each other and your mom until I get back okay?" Instead, he gives his children what amounts to a Death Glare with the expressions on Al and Ed's face making it look like they think their father hates them and having abandonment issues when their mom dies. That's good parenting right there. This might have been intentional, however, given how much Hohenheim hates himself, and it could have also been meant to be a deterrent to keep them from seeking him out and getting themselves killed.
  • In Gakuen Tengoku, Oshino's inability to articulate the fact that he's a new teacher got him his ass beat.
  • Gundam:
    • The initial fights between the Gundams in Mobile Suit Gundam Wing comes from all of them separatedly ditching the initial plan of executing a Colony Drop and coming to Earth to execute a guerilla campaign while belonging to different cells, thus they had no idea the others had the same idea and tend to attack first.
    • Episodes 6 to 8 of After War Gundam X are driven by this. With Garrod having worked solo up until now, he accidentally injures a crewmate through a moment's inattention and then hares off on his own to try and rectify the problem, without informing anyone where he's going or what his plan is. As a result, he gets in way over his head and Jamil is hurt bailing him out of a nuclear explosion.
    • This was Colonel Badass Sergei Smirnov's Fatal Flaw in Gundam 00. His inability to reach for his son Andrei after the death of his mom Holly, leads to Andrei growing so embittered and hateful that he ends up killing his father in battle, believing him to be a traitor on top of responsible for Holly's death.
      • In The Movie finale to the series, the ELS attempt to understand humanity by absorbing and assimilating them, apparently not realizing that doing so is killing the humans they're trying it on. They also attempt to contact Innovators and proto-Innovators telepathically, but the sheer amount of information they transmit sounds like screaming to these telepaths, and basically Mind Rapes them.
    • In Gundam SEED:
      • A significant amount of the angst had Kira (or anyone else on the Archangel) felt the need say to ZAFT something along the lines of "Hey, there's about 30 civilians on board this ship". Then again, Yzak would most likely just shoot them anyway, believing them to be fleeing soldiers.
      • Athrun telling Nicol that the pilot Strike was a friend of his whom tragic circumstances forced him into reluctantly fighting, and not evil and hell bent on slaughtering them would have likely saved Nicol's life later on. Instead Nicol suicides into Strike in a vain attempt to save Athrun's life, which was never in danger because Kira would likely have just left Athrun alone.
    • In Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny, after destroying the Freedom and apparently killing Kira, Shinn goes up to Athrun (who's his team leader) and says "I got revenge, for both of us"...and Athrun punches him in the face. Shinn was referring to how Freedom destroyed Athrun's Saviour Gundam and left him badly injured, and is completely unaware that Kira and Athrun are childhood friends, so he's incredibly confused and angry at this expression of anti-gratitude.
      • Destiny is good at this. The entire conflict between the old and new cast could have been entirely avoided if both sides would at least have made an attempt to speak to each other. Kira and his friends intervene when Orb faces the Minerva to try to get Orb to back off, but after this fails Kira proceeds to just shoot at everyone (non lethally of course) without even trying to say anything to Minerva. Not even explaintion their intentions or a "Lay off of Orb and we'll help you get out alive." nothing. And Minerva instead of contacting Kira's side to ask what the hell they are doing, just kind of silently glares at them. Later on, when Zaft's invading Orb to get Djbril after the corrupt administration insists on protecting him, Kira and co show up halfway to take over control of Orb again, ordering everyone not currently fighting Zaft to go find Djbril to kick him out. But they don't tell Zaft this. Instead they keep fighting them, while trying to get Djbril with limited manpower instead of trying to work something out. As a result Djbril gets away.
      • There is an unfortunate reason for this: Kira didn't trust Zaft. He had a good reason for this, and his suspicions were (somewhat tragically) proven correct in the end, but he couldn't find a way to explain the situation.
    • Gundam: Reconguista in G enforces this trope with Minovsky particles, which disrupt communcations and are spread as a matter of routine in battle. The only way to get around them is with direct metal-to-metal contact, which early on causes a lot of problems (and tragedy) that could have been averted if pilots were able to talk to each other for half a minute. Later in the show, they're better at grabbing each other's mobile suits so they can chat.
  • In Happiness Charge Pretty Cure, a lot of Iona's grief (as well as a set of powers) would have been spared had she not spent the entire time acting like a Jerkass towards Hime and her Dark Secret and instead asking why it happened.
  • Parodied in Hayate the Combat Butler. There is an episode that has Hayate spending the night at Hinagiku's house; then Hinagiku end up bumping with Ayumu, Hayate's other love interest and Hina's new friend as well. That's when she says this is bad, and the narrator detailedly explains this trope, commenting that Hinagiku fears that Ayumu will find out somehow that Hayate is inside the house, then will run away and get frustrated because of a misunderstanding. And then it happens.
    • Although it hasn't killed anyone yet, Hayate seems to be a master at this. The entire story was started because he couldn't articulate himself correctly.
    • The time it nearly resulted in someone getting killed was in Izumi's arc. Her father asks him if his child, Izumi loves him, and he answers 'yes' Kotetsu. Hayate ends up having to fight in a lava pit, what is supposed to be a fight to the death. Izumi gets closer to dying because she's wearing silk.
  • Used heavily but then averted in Heroic Age, in that the aliens attack and war against humans without warning, but when several actions make it clear they have a hard time understanding each others' motives, both sides enter negotiations and call a truce.
  • In the first volume of High School DXD, Rias tells Issei he is to call her Buchou. Later in the series, after she has developed feeling for him (but not told him in direct, concrete manner), she despairs that he won't call her by name. That despair allows an enemy to take control of her.
  • Higurashi: When They Cry takes a very... er... literal angle on this because most arcs are One Side of the Story, and that the series in general contains proliferation of Cryptic Conversations and characters who Cannot Spit It Out. In fact, the latter point becomes a major Aesop of the series. In some cases the use of this trope is mildly justified by the fact that the 'main' character hasn't really known the rest of the cast for that long — and the things they're not talking about are often rather more serious secrets than is usual for this trope. Like, say, the fact that you just murdered someone.
  • In The iDOLM@STER, The Producer doesn't clear Miki's misconception about her entering the idol unit that Ritsuko created, which almost ends up with Miki quitting being an idol for good a few episodes later.
  • Itazura Na Kiss: Naoki is often guilty of this. A lot of grief in the series could have been avoided had he simply explained the reasons behind his actions beforehand rather than letting Kotoko misunderstand.
  • The Stand user Tizziano from Jo Jos Bizarre Adventure Vento Aureo can actually invoke this with his Stand Talking Heads. It attaches to it's victim's tongue and makes them say the opposite of what they intended. This also extends to writing and gesturing. Useless as an offensive stand, but it works to silence the one witness to another, more offense-based stand.
  • In Kanon, Yuichi Aizawa used to visit his aunt Akiko and cousin Nayuki in their quiet little town every holiday, but one year something happened and he left for seven years. The entire plot would be brought to a halt if not for this and There Are No Therapists.
  • In Katekyō Hitman Reborn!, the newest conflict with the Shimon Family could've been completely avoided if not for an important note that was blown into a bin by a convenient breeze.
  • In Black God, had the Big Bad simply explained that he was out to kill off a whopping third of the entire human population because if he didn't, a Greater-Scope Villain would come along and kill off every single living being on the planet, at the very least, the good guys might have been at least more willing to sit down and talk things out. It didn't help that the Big Bad seemed to only employ Obviously Evil jerkasses into his organization.
  • In Magic Knight Rayearth, Clef's failure to give the girls the full version of the legend of the Magic Knights results in a fair bit of trauma.note  But because he Cannot Spit It Out, he tells the girls a Metaphorical Truth (or, in the Darkhorse translation, an outright lie) and they are subsequently shattered when they learn that they were summoned to kill Emeraude, not save her. The girls spend most of Part II trying to subvert this trope, making sure to discuss with the various invading parties why they're trying to conquer Cephiro.
  • The entire "White Devil incident" from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Strikers and a good deal of angst on Teana's part could've been avoided with either more feedback from Nanoha or a single mention from Teana about Nanoha's own training (presumably leading to her learning about the latter's Heroic RRoD earlier).
    • Poor communication leads to at least three-fourths of the fights in this series. The antagonists usually have very good reasons for their actions, it just takes a few Starlight Breakers before they're willing to talk about it.
  • The two major conflicts in Mahou Sensei Negima! could theoretically have been mostly avoided, had the Big Bads just sat down with everybody else and explained the situation and proposed solution, rather than causing massive amounts of trouble and not telling anyone why they're doing what they're doing. Case in point, if Chao and/or Fate would have taken the time to explain that Mundus Magicus was in danger of collapsing rather than going freelance and causing tons of collateral damage, they probably would have solved the problem by now.
    • In later chapters (300+), Negi seems to have understood this, but most of his opponents are too pissed off against him to listen. He's also been pretty vague about what he's going to do about that, so it at least goes both ways.
  • Mai-HiME. Let's count the ways, shall we?
    • Mai gets involved with the HiME Festival by being told she'll have to risk the most important thing to her. She assumes it's her life, as does apparently every other HiME. Not quite.
    • Nagi informs the HiME that the HiME Star is descending and will continue to do so until someone gains its power. The earthquakes and weather shifts caused by its movement make the HiME consider that it will destroy the world otherwise. Not really, but the perceived time crunch forces several of the more impulsive HiME into actions they might've waited before taking otherwise.
    • Yukariko blames Nao for attacking her after the above revelation, in reality an illusion projected by her CHILD. Nao, already a bitter, cynical girl by nature, assumes the HiME coming to confront her about attacking Yukariko are attacking her first, and loses an eye in the resulting fight, firmly shoving her from Anti-Hero into an antagonist slot.
    • Yuiichi has no idea how deep the feelings his Unlucky Childhood Friend, Shiho, are. Naturally, she ends up trying to Murder the Hypotenuse multiple times, and her defeat in the end causes his death.
    • Mikoto's training and arguable brainwashing at a young age repeatedly spawn Diabolus ex Machina, killing Takumi and Yuiichi both.
    • Shizuru's failure to inform Haruka she was leaving the school to look after her grievously hurt best friend leads to Haruka tracking her down, seeing Shizuru's private actions while Natsuki is asleep, and jumping to all the wrong conclusions. Her eventual accusations of her molesting Natsuki while she slept, in Natsuki's hearing, cause Natsuki to react...poorly to Shizuru's attempts to reassure her, and the perceived rejection causes Shizuru to have a psychotic break and kill lots of people that "could threaten Natsuki", ending in the deaths of Haruka, The First District, Nao's mother, and Shizuru and Natsuki themselves in the final showdown.
  • Maison Ikkoku features a lot of this, while playing with or subverting it at other times. Godai attempts to explain himself several times, but the situations he finds himself in are often so outlandish that Kyoko doesn't believe him. It's played straight for Coach Mitaka and his potential fiancee Asuna by the end, though- it ends up removing him from the picture entirely.
  • In Mayo Chiki! this happens a lot, mainly something to due with Kinjiro trying to hide the fact that Subaru is a girl.
  • Mazinger Z: In episode 26, the conflict between Kouji and secondary character Saijyo could have been averted if the latter had explained that his dog stole Kouji's little brother's chickens because she had puppies to feed.
  • Monster sometimes relies on this trope. The show is full of characters who know bits and pieces of the overall puzzle; two of them will often unknowingly meet up, but fail to say the right things. Examples include Tenma's first meeting with Grimmer and Nina's first meeting with Lotte (who even mentions her friend Johan, just never by name).
  • This happens often in My Bride is a Mermaid, most notably the time when Nagasumi was Mistaken for Cheating with Lunar (he was drying her off), and nearly killed by her father as a result.
  • A filler arc of Naruto ended with the 6 Tails being captured, likely entirely because no one decided to warn him about the Akatsuki. Add to that Utakata being to afraid to tell any of the heroes that he's a Jinchuuriki in the first place in the end did more harm than good.
  • In the manga version made by Yoshiyuki Sadamoto of Neon Genesis Evangelion, this is the sole reason for the tension between Shinji and Kaworu. Kaworu here is a Fish out of Water with No Social Skills rather than an experienced Nice Guy like the anime, so he comes across as quite a Jerkass toward Shinji and the others, which makes Shinji wary of him and even coming across as disliking him at times. Later, this is revealed to not be the case at all, as Kaworu is intrigued by Shinji and wants him to love him back, and Shinji is in fact attracted to him as well, but due to the lack of proper communication (and lack of social skills in Kaworu's case), they just can't show their affection to each other properly. They only come clean with their feelings when Shinji is forced to kill Kaworu because the latter is an Angel.
    • Later in the story, near Kaworu's demise, there is an extremely Played for Drama version of this trope. After Rei II's Heroic Sacrifice leading to her being replaced by Rei's III, and Asuka in a coma, Shinji feels depressed because he now really has no friend. Kaworu approaches him at that and demands Shinji to tell him just what he means to him. This is heavily implied that, should Shinji be honest and tell Kaworu that yes, he considers him a friend, Kaworu won't have any problem in betraying SEELE and joining NERV for real, now that he has Shinji who actually cares about him. But because Shinji decides that he won't get close to anyone anymore so he won't be hurt if they die again, he lies to him. And Kaworu gives up, proceeds with his original plan the next day. Sure, Kaworu still lets Shinji kill him, but if only Shinji had been honest, he would have had another friend.
  • In Not Simple, the protagonist Ian commits suicide after hearing that the woman he loved (and whom he planned to run away together with once they reunited) died since he last saw her three years ago. This was told to him by a girl named Irene, whose mother had recounted the story of Ian and her Aunt to her since the Aunt died. However, it all turned out to be a mistake, as Irene was unaware that it was actually her mother who had met and planned to run away with Ian... she was just lying to protect her daughter's feelings.
  • One Piece:
    • This is a Running Gag with Princess Vivi. She constantly forgets to inform the Straw Hats about very important things from Baroque Works agents to the Alabastian desert wildlife until they have already happened.
    • A more serious example occurs when Luffy and Usopp were arguing about whether to keep the Going Merry, who was beyond fixing. Usopp misinterprets Luffy's decision to not fix Merry as "dumping" whatever became useless (and Usopp had been dealing with confidence issues since the beginning). Usopp fails to mention that he believes that the ship is sentient which goes a long way to explain his behavior. Luffy also tells Nami to stay out of the argument when she mentions that Luffy had a hard time coming to the decision, a fact that might have made Luffy sem a bit more sympathetic.
    • Works to the good guys' advantage at Enies Lobby. Due to a scout being knocked out during Luffy's rampage, Spandam thinks that it's just one pirate running around who only took out five soldiers. Because he didn't hang up his phone properly, the rest of the garrison can't tell him that the Straw Hats and allies have at least fifty men, thousands of soldiers have been taken out, and their two giant guards (Literally, the two were giants) have defected. By the time someone manages to fix things, the Straw Hats are just before the Tower of Justice and ready to take Nico Robin back!
    • A very serious example occurs during the Fishman Island arc. It's revealed that Princess Shirahoshi had known all along that Hody Jones, the local anti-human extremist, was the one who murdered her mother Otohime for supporting human-Fishman coexistence, but deliberately withheld the information in order to honor her mother's last wish to bear no ill will against her killer, and prevent the others looking for vengeance. While her intentions were noble, her decision to keep quiet allowed Hody to gain enough power to easily overwhelm Fishman Island's military and plot a coup; Hody even takes the time to rub it in her face.
  • In the first chronological arc of Ooku: the Inner Chambers, Reverend Kasuga takes every opportunity to convince the young abbot Arikoto that he was selected to become a catamite for the pleasure of the Shogun (with everything from imprisonment up to and including murdering people before his eyes to secure his "consent"). Had she taken him aside and told him that the actual Shogun Iemitsu had been dead for years and she was trying to avoid a catastrophic Succession Crisis by getting his teenaged bastard daughter knocked up to begin with he may have been less resistant to the idea if for no other reason than avoiding civil strife being a better reason to abandon his priestly vows than the amusement of a corrupt rulernote .
  • In the Pokémon movie Pokémon: Lucario and the Mystery of Mew, poor communication between a few non-villainous scientists and a kleptomaniac Legendary who supposedly could have read their minds at any time resulted in a giant tree nearly killing half the cast and Lucario Killed Off for Real.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica:
    • In Different Story, Mami misinterpreted Kyoko's "I see you a little differently than a friend" as she was seeing Mami as senior, whom she will abandon after she got strong. In reality, Kyoko's thinking Mami as family.
    • Subverted with Homura. She uses Cryptic Conversation since the last time she goes open, nobody believes her, and when the truth comes out, it goes horribly wrong.
    • And invoked repeatedly and at length by Kyubey, who specifically withholds Awful Truth revelations until the most dramatic possible moments in order to coerce the girls' despair-driven transformations into Eldritch Abominations.
    • Sayaka hates Homura because she thinks Homura deliberately waited until after Mami was killed before showing up to save the day. Madoka was there and knows that Mami tied Homura up with magic ribbons that only dissipated when Mami died, but is unable to speak up before Sayaka leaves.
    • Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion much of the plot is driven by the fact that Homura misunderstood what Madoka meant when she says she would never want to be apart from everyone she loves. Ultimate Madoka isn't apart from everyone she loves, they just can't see her unless they join her in her magical girl heaven, but Homura takes it to mean that Madoka didn't want to make that sacrifice in the first place. On the other hand, during the end of the anime when Homura asked Madoka if she was alright with being forgotten about, Madoka never really answered yes or no (though the implication was that she would willingly bear with it to save people). The result is that Homura concludes that Madoka is not happy with her ascension to godhood and, wanting to make Madoka happy no matter the consequences, she undoes Moadoka's sacrifice, usurps her god powers, and essentially becomes the Devil.
  • The entire series of Ranma ½ is made of this trope. This is lampshaded at least once, after Akane beat up Ranma who was trying to get a scroll with a secret technique, which was incidentally in the Hotspring Akane was in. After Akane's father explains she says Ranma could have just told her. His rather accurate response is "And just how often do you listen before clobbering me?"
  • The entire plot of Robotech hinges on two things: factions trying to get their hands on the means to produce Protoculture or to destroy it and someone not explaining things when they could:
    • When the Zentraedi first arrived to Earth, the United Earth Government wanted to talk. Then the SDF-1, formerly a Tirolian battlefortress containing a Protoculture Matrix and the seeds of the Flower of Life that Zor didn't want to fall back in the hands of the Robotech Masters or their Zentraedi soldiers, fired the Reflex cannon at them and blew up two Zentraedi scoutships, at which point the Humans guessed the Zentraedi wouldn't be willing to talk anymore and the Zentraedi guessed the Humans never wanted to. Here starts the First Robotech War.
    • When the Robotech Masters arrive to Earth, they sit up in the atmosphere for a while, with them and Earth's Army of the Southern Cross studying each other before trying to communicate. Then a trigger-happy Southern Cross officer fires a volley of missiles at one of the Masters' motherships, damaging it and starting the Second Robotech War. The United Earth Government decided then and there they wouldn't talk to the Masters unless from a clear position of superiority (impossible to achieve, given the Masters' technological superiority), and the Masters only opened communications near the end to demand the evacuation of Earth explaining they needed the Protoculture to deal with the incoming Invid... That the Southern Cross never even heard of (after that ultimatum the supreme commander of the Southern Cross wonder who the Invid are in his thoughts).
    • The Third Robotech War, between the Invid of the Regis occupying Earth and the Robotech Expeditionary Force trying to reclaim it, comes entirely from both sides refusing to talk things out in spite of the Invid's occupation being relatively peaceful (as long as you don't oppose them or try to get your hands on Protoculture without their permission, they leave you alove, and they even repaired the damage done to Earth by the Zentraedi bombardment). This is actually Justified: the Invid Regis thinks of Humans as barbarians who can't understand the marvels of Protoculture and the dangers of having it (and is perfectly right about the dangers), while the REF has just won a very destructive conflict with the Regent's Invid, who devastated the Robotech Masters' former empire and their homeworld of Tirol, and have no reason to think that the Regis' faction, having suffered the same things the Regent's has at the hands of the Masters, are any different. That and the REF was being covertly manipulated by the Haydonites, the ancient enemies of the Invid, but nobody knew until, during the final battle, the Regis recognized a few pieces of Haydonite tech being used by the REF.
    • The Fourth Robotech War between the REF and the Haydonites would have happened anyway, but this trope made it worse: before leaving at the end of the Third War, the Regis left behind a very specific warning about those they call "Children of Shadows" having been manipulating the REF and supplied technology that was likely boobytrapped and being about to launch a genocidal attack, but the REF leadership, given the source of the warning, didn't heed it until after being caught with their pants down. That was after receiving evidence from their own men that one piece of technology coming from the Haydonites was not a giant nuke but a bomb that would have created a black hole.
  • Sailor Moon:
    • A good chunk of the main arc of the '90s anime adaptation's R saga. Mamoru gets a series of dreams that suggest something horrible will happen to Usagi if they stay together. Rather than warn Usagi, Mamoru decides to push her away. It takes him about 20 episodes to finally tell Usagi about the dreams, by which point Usagi is driven to the Despair Event Horizon and nearly killed by the arc's Big Bad in at least one occasion.
    • The Infinity arc, especially in its earliest stages, pretty much runs on the steadfast refusal of Sailors Neptune and Uranus to tell Sailor Moon and her team anything about what's going on, even after it becomes clear that the Sailor Team is involved whether Neptune and Uranus like it or not.
  • In the manga Saitama Chainsaw Shoujo, the main character is a bad speaker with self-confidence issues whose only two friends suddenly stop talking to her after a transfer student joins the school and steals her boyfriend. She doesn't take it well, feeling crushed and friendless, and soon decides that revenge followed by suicide is the only option she has left.
  • In the case of School Days, literally. This trope's role in the series really can't be overstated — every time a misunderstanding can happen, it does. The worst part is that the characters know it's happening ("Wait, he's dating her? But she said..."), yet they never make the effort to sort it out. Lives are destroyed because the right people are never all together in one conversation.
  • In Sekirei, the protagonist's sister gets a Sekirei named Shiina. His goal is to find Kusano, his sister (whether they're actually related is unknown, but Shiina is #107 and Kusano is #108). Yukari proceeds to heartlessly beat any Ashikabi she comes across (she's become a massive bitch in the process somehow, even though some of her victims deserved it) and then ask them where Kusano is. Kusano is one of her brother's Sekirei.
    • Even if she thinks she can't call him (you're not allowed to talk about Sekirei to Muggles, and she doesn't know he's an Ashikabi), visiting Izumo Inn would have resolved this whole subplot and now she's been kidnapped by Higa.
    • There are numerous small scale incidents of this, mainly because everyone likes to keep everyone else Locked Out of the Loop, especially Minato.
  • In Skip Beat!, poor communication between Ren Tsuruga and Kyoko Mogami keeps half the plot running and our main couple apart.
  • The main character in Steins;Gate apparently doesn't think it's worth mentioning to anyone that one of the people they know is a spy and is going to murder one of them and kidnap the rest. He goes through countless iterations without it ever occurring to him at any point that he might want to discuss the situation with his friends, who are directly endangered by their own ignorance. Worse, this means that if he ever screws up, he won't be able to change the past to reverse it and have another attempt; if he made sure to tell a friend on each iteration, they could reverse things even if he were killed. He did end up realizing this and told Kurisu because she was the most reliable and only person he realized would take him seriously.
  • In Suite Pretty Cure ♪, Hibiki and Kanade's friendship is shattered prior to the series starting because they told each other that they'd wait for each other by a tree at the school entrance on the first day of school. Their school has four entrances and they didn't say which one. It takes a year, the two become Cures, and two children doing the same thing to realize where they messed up.
  • Played for Laughs in the manga version of Tenchi Muyo! with one light-hearted comic. Sasami gets her first case of the hiccups and the gang starts trying to let it go its way. However, Mihoshi accidentally took her superior's old wives' tale about how one hiccuping 100 times would kill them as a real threat and tells everyone before he could mention it. The gang quickly tries to figure out how to solve her problem, but as she reaches the 100th hiccup, Tenchi hits a low-grade Godzilla Threshold - he startles her by saying he loves her. It works and later Washu approaches Tenchi and mentions that the whole thing was a old wives' tale and she really was in no danger.
  • In Tiger & Bunny, Kotetsu has a habit of making things more difficult for himself by communicating poorly with people. For instance, When he's helping Barnaby investigate the murder of his parents, he beats around the bush and keeps giving non-answers when trying to tell him that he's losing his powers and plans on retiring. This causes Barnaby to think Kotetsu is only helping to convince him not to retire so he won't feel as guilty. He chews Kotetsu out, goes off on his own and ends up getting captured by the Big Bad. Also Kotetsu promises to retire and spend more time with his daughter Kaede but has to help Barnaby with the aforementioned situation. Instead of explaining to his family that he's in the middle of a murder investigation, he just gives really vague excuses whenever they ask why he hasn't resigned yet, once again hurting the relationship between him and his daughter (who doesn't even know he's a superhero), which had just been repaired an episode ago.
  • Tsukigasa would have no story if it weren't for this trope. Nobody remotely discussed what exactly happened when Azuma cut Kuroe's arm off or their feelings for each other, leading to everyone having a completely different idea of what went on and who regretted what. When Kuroe comes back it still takes them a long time to finally come out with the truth. Kuroe is also nearly arrested by Tatsumi because he was too stubborn to reveal he wasn't actively a criminal in front of Azuma.
  • In Umi Monogatari, Kanon never told Kojima she liked him out of fear and naturally assumed he was going to dump her, which made him grow distant from her because he felt she didn't reciprocate his feelings.
  • This happens all the time in Video Girl Ai, but the events surrounding Moemi's Near-Rape Experience take the cake: Yota arrives in time to stop the attack on Moemi but one of the attackers, a member of Takashi's band, claims that it was Takashi, Yota's best friend and Moemi's boyfriend, to set it up. Given how ambiguously Takashi had acted before at the phone and that Takashi shows up shortly after, Yota is inclined to believe him... And asks to Takashi, but the latter, shocked at the entire situation and the accuse and being completely innocent, can only reply "He said that...?", leading to Yota to believe the accuse and break their friendship. It takes a while, and months in-universe, for things to be cleared, with Takashi's decision to not tell the truth because he wanted Yota to get with Moemi not helping things.
  • Near the end of The Vision of Escaflowne, Van attempts to kill Dilandau and Allen leaps to his rescue, apparently having never bothered to let Van in on the fact that Dilandau is actually Allen's younger sister who has been sex-changed and driven psychotic by Zaibach. Rather than explain, "Hey, don't kill him, he's my kid sister, Allen tells Van that Allen himself should be held responsible for all of Dilandau's crimes. And rather than ask for further explanation, Van's response is along the lines of, "Okay, sure, then let's fight to the death."
    • It could be argued that they just really, really wanted to beat the crap out of each other. Both knew full well that Allen's statements were "crazy" and begging for explanation, but further discussion would take away their long-awaited excuse to fight.
  • This is revealed to be the entire crux of the third year sub-plot in Love Live! Sunshine!!. Kanan finds out that Mari is turning down potential overseas study prospects in favor of staying in Uranohoshi to be with her friends in Aqours. In addition, Mari injured her ankle attempting to practice a cartwheel-double backflip right before the Tokyo live, meaning that any attempt to perform could cause her further harm, but Mari insisted on performing anyways. Instead of confronting her about any of this, Kanan instead fakes stage fright at the Tokyo live, forcing Aqours to drop out of Love Live and eventually disband. Neither Kanan nor Dia ever tell Mari what happened or why, so she ended up leaving for overseas believing that her friends had abandoned her. None of them move past the incident until Chika forces Dia to explain the situation and Mari finds out the truth from her.
  • In Yuri Is My Job, this trope ended up driving a rift between Hime and Mitsuki. The two had been practicing for the piano recital together, but some of their classmates had started spreading rumors that Mitsuki was bullying Hime into doing the recital with her, and they got to the point at which Hime thought she had no choice but to quit in order to quash those rumors. The problem is that Hime never told Mitsuki, who ended up finding out from the music teacher the next day. Mitsuki, unaware of Hime's more altruistic motives and upset by what seemed like a betrayal on her part, overheard Hime talking with her friends, then exposed Hime as a liar, ruining her reputation and ending their friendship.
  • Motoyasu in The Rising of the Shield Hero ends up causing a major catastrophe through poor communication, attempting to solve a village's famine by giving them a magically-enhanced seed he found in a dungeon. It turns out that Motoyasu's seed was a dangerous failed experiment that would sprout a giant killer tree where it was planted, and the chest it was kept in had a sign next to it explicitly warning travelers of its true nature. Althought Motoyasu wasn't able to read the sign due to it being in a language he couldn't understand, he still immediately jumped to the conclusion that it's a beneficial item due to being stuck in the mindset that he's effectively playing an MMORPG, and the villagers, even though they'd heard rumors about this seed, they still assumed that since one of the Four Heroes gave it to them, he obviously knows exactly what it is, therefore it must be safe. Itsuki, meanwhile, travels to a neighboring kingdom and helps a local resistance group overthrow a local despot who's been hiking up taxes to absurd degrees. It turns out that the high taxes weren't just a result of greed; the kingdom actually needed them to stay afloat due to frequent monster attacks, so once La Résistance takes over they end up keeping the high taxes and becoming no different from the despot they overthrew. Naofumi eventually calls out Itsuki on not confronting the ruler first to figure out the reason why he was doing what he was doing (which, being one of the Four Heroes, he would've had the authority to do,) instead of jumping straight into a revolutionary plot.

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