Follow TV Tropes

Trope Finder

Go To

The TVTropes Trope Finder is where you can come to ask questions like "Do we have this one?" and "What's the trope about...?" Trying to rediscover a long lost show or other medium but need a little help? Head to You Know That Show and try your luck there. Want to propose a new trope? You should be over at You Know, That Thing Where.

Find a Trope:

Describe the Trope:

14th Jan, 2020 05:35:50 PM

It is NOT a villain protagonist trope, but rather a very narrow subtrope of it. In the trope description it is clearly stated that "If a heroic protagonist is revealed to be Evil All Along towards the end, this is The Killerin Me." Yet the latter trope describes only the killers. I am looking for examples of the trope in which the protagonist does supposedly good things for most of the story right until The Reveal in which the readers/watchers learn that he was the bad guy all along.

So, as an example. Bob is a cop. He's investigating a case of a stolen jewelery. He's quite a capable investigator and after following clues he gets some evidence and quickly arrests the thief. But at the end of the story it is revealed, that he himself was a thief and the investigation was a set-up hoax since the beggining.

14th Jan, 2020 05:38:53 PM

Tomato Surprise possibly? Edit: oh wait didn't read the whole prompt. But that's a subtrope of tomato surprise I think.

Edited by Florien
14th Jan, 2020 06:02:57 PM

Does it always have to be a subtrope of Tomato Surprise though? As we read in the description:

"The Tomato Surprise, however, is only a surprise due to the narration withholding important information that the reader might reasonably have expected to have been told up-front, like "the story is not, as you probably assumed, set on Earth" or "the protagonist is not, as you probably assumed, a human being"." followed by "If the twist comes as a surprise to any characters, it is not an example of this trope.".

There are surely some stories in which that does not apply.

Edited by ThomasWard
14th Jan, 2020 06:30:02 PM

I would think that there wouldn't be an exception, as there is a reveal that the hero was actually evil. That is by definition a Tomato Surprise, because the information that the protagonist was actually not doing good things was withheld until that point of the story.

14th Jan, 2020 06:35:49 PM

I think you are wrong, since it all depends on the story narrative. If the story is told in first person by Bob who avoids some detail then you are right. But, for example, if the story is being told from the point of Bob's wife/captain and in The Reveal they find hidden stolen jewelery/some other proof of Bob's guilt, this will not be a Tomato Surprise. Am I right about that?

14th Jan, 2020 07:19:36 PM

Ties into Protagonist-Centered Morality you assume the protag is sympathetic and the story goes along with this assumption.

^^ Detective Mole is a closer fit.

15th Jan, 2020 04:06:09 PM

The killer in me is the name of the trope

15th Jan, 2020 06:09:54 PM

The Killerin Me, as I said, refers only to the stories focused on murders.

16th Jan, 2020 04:19:57 AM

And again, the trope I am speaking of is a supertrope of Detective Mole. I think That Synchronicity was the closest one here.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: