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Unless there's a test involved, actual kitten-eating isn't this trope, right? So I pulled these:
I feel that this example should go, but am not certain if it aligns with something else entierly
We've got to find a way to fit 'FEED ME A STRAY CAT' either on this page or on the Playing With one.
Okay, Mr. Death, let me help you out. This is the discussion page. Now, as to your memory of the movie, which is really a moot point since I already removed the entry just so you wouldn't turn this into an edit war...
The shooting began. J looked left and right, sizing up the targets while everyone else was firing wildly. Then he got a decisive look and took one shot. Then Zed questioned him on why Little Susie had to die. J gave his explanation, and then concluded with "am I right, or do I owe her family an apology?" Zed said nothing and walked off, and the next line is Zed telling K that J "has a problem with authority" - in other words, the answer wasn't wrong (and it makes sense that Zed questioned him on it, to make sure that J really understood why that was the right shot and didn't just get lucky), it was J's sarcastic tone that Zed had a problem with.
Seriously, why are you operating under the assumption that I don't know what I'm doing? I have been editing this wiki for almost three years now. I think I have proven myself a damn good editor, so how about giving me the benefit of the doubt? If I wasn't 100% sure about something, I wouldn't be talking about it.
Okay, first off, lighten up. I know you said you're sore because I chopped an entry you spent a while editing, but if something's wrong—say, for being another trope entirely, which I pointed out in my edit reasons—then yes, I'm going to cut it.
And believe me, I know what a discussion page is, thank you very much, and I don't appreciate being condescended to just because you took this personally. Let me help you out: Don't take it personally when a troper removes an entry that's not an example of the trope. I've been an editor for a couple years now, so how about giving me the benefit of the doubt and not flipping out at me?
As for my memory of the movie, check the discussion pages for both Hidden Purpose Test and Secret Test of Character where I argued about this before, including looking up the scene in question on YouTube, and finding (what looks like) the shooting and pitch scripts.
To sum up the previous argument, Zed doesn't just "say nothing," he gives J an incredulous look, then shakes his head as he's walking away. If Jay had performed every test correctly, then Kay wouldn't have had to argue the point. Kay's dialogue in the scene with Zed is structured as if Kay is arguing to hire him despite what happened.
I'm sorry I blew my top - it's been one of those days, and since I have to be relentlessly cheerful and calm in RL, I kinda spaz out all the harder online for it. I cleaned up way more than that example, so that wasn't really a problem, and you're right, HPT is the better trope. Still, it seems like it does play with this trope somehow, since letting the big monsters live and killing the cute innocent character is the test of goodness. But since it's already on HPT, it makes more sense to just keep it over there.
As for the movie, I've seen it a few times, and I've paid specific attention to that scene just to see if J's claims make sense. They do. You can actually see Will Smith's body language as he's moving from alien to alien, and how his face hardens as though making a decision right before he takes the shot. Sure, dismissing a monster because it has a handkerchief but killing a little girl for having a bunch of physics books seems crazy, but it's the same sort of craziness that the MIB movies run on anyway.
(If I had to WMG it into some sort of real world logic, I'd say that, being a police officer, maybe he knew this was a sort of recognition test where only one target is the real bad guy, which is why he started looking for what stands out as weird within the setup's context rather than just what looks objectively weird.)
Jay actually shut Zed up by asking if he was wrong, and Zed doesn't strike me as the sort to settle for stunned silence on anything. It seemed like he would have responded with "of course you owe them an apology!" if he honestly could. All the tests seemed to be HPT's for the candidates - giving the honest answer on what they're doing there (none of them actually know, but Jay was the only one who admitted it), taking the initiative to grab the table during the written test, and picking the right target in the shooting range. The novelization apparently backs that up (though I haven't read it), and Zed and Kay's conversation was all about Jay's personality: Zed never brought up the test results, and it seems like he would have hammered that point home if he could.
Plus, the others all flunked out. I guess it's possible that there was only the one opening, but Zed and Kay never even mentioned the other candidates; during that conversation, they seemed to have already been dropped from consideration, so now the focus was on whether to accept the one person who passed.
But anyway, it's all a moot point - it's already listed under HPT like you said, and if it's an example of either trope, it's way closer to being a straight example of that than an inversion of this.
I guess it's open to interpretation. What you see as Jay assessing the situation, I see as him just going "WTF" at all the stuff flying around. To me, it looked like he looked nervous and uncertain when Zed asks "What the hell happened?" and he blurts out that he hesitated.
I don't think it was stunned silence either, but Zed is also not really the type to make an outburst like that, but with a disapproving scowl. Them choosing Jay doesn't mean the others flunked out—it just means that they chose Jay over the others. For all we know, they all aced the other exams, but they were only picking one person for the job.
But yeah, it's already up on the other page, so no point in going back and forth since we've each got our own interpretations.
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