My Least Favorite Tropes
Faux Action Girl: It’s okay for a action girl to be the one in danger and need of rescuing sometimes, but stop with the fake outs. Faux Action Girls tend to be stupid and incompetent and their other strengths gets put on the back burner in favor of making them the damsel in distress. It’s even more frustrating when the narrative tells us that she’s strong but doesn’t actually show us how and why.
Designated Hero: Don’t expect me to root for someone who is a complete asshole. I don’t care if he’s “flawed and unique” if he doesn’t have anything to give him redeeming qualities or character development I won’t care. Especially if his shitty actions are never called out, or they’re portrayed as a positive thing.
Token Pink Female/Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Can’t girls be any color other than pink/light red/purple? Now I like pink but I’m so fed up with female characters especially the Token Girl being pink, especially if it only serves as an code for them being the distaff of the male character? I get it if it’s To Sell Toys but, that gets annoying and turns into a stereotype that female characters must always be pink. Why not orange or green? It’s more irritating when the Token Pink Girl ends up having no personality beyond Strong Female Character™ or a trophy between the male characters. She’s essentially “the color pink the character.”
Sassy Black Woman: Because black women can’t have any other personality trait. She can’t be spunky but also knowledgeable, or shy and docile, she has to constantly spit out salty one-liners and act all ratchet and ghetto in order to be relatable. I’m more annoyed that dark skinned girls get pigeonholed into this type of role.
Derailing Love Interests: Screwing up a perfectly normal character in an attempt to shove a pairing in the audience’s faces is one reason why people hate shipping wars so much. You don’t have to warp characters just to make a potential partner look good. Everyone has good and bad traits. It’s especially aggravating when it’s used to promote a toxic pairing/character over a nice character who can be part of a healthy relationship. Quit pitting people, more specifically women, against each other for the sake of pointless romantic drama.
The Complainer is Always Wrong even when he’s right and provides good arguments for said complaints.
Creator’s Pet: I have a special list coming up for this trope because I really hate it. In short, a genuinely awful character is given love and support by their original creator or author yet has done little to nothing to receive said praise. Also the good and popular characters get shafted or demonized to make this character look good. I happen to share my birthday with one of the biggest Creator’s Pets in Western media (Brenda Barrett from General Hospital).
Human Focused Adaptation: If I want to see a movie about say, Road Rovers, I want to see the dogs in action, not their owners in their world of boring politics. If I want to see a movie about Bionicle I don’t want some crummy and cliche white kid sucking up the spotlight from the Toa. Basically, this takes the characters from the original franchise and regulates them to special guest stars IN THEIR OWN MOVIE!!!!
What’s more, the humans from the original franchise are forgotten or never given expanded roles; alternatively they end up hogging spotlight from the actual cartoons and given a stupid and forced romantic arc over helping their friends saving the world. In fact if the original show was about saving the world, expect that to take a backseat to “I gotta impress the person I like so much” or “I have a crummy job” plot. I’ll write more about this trope later on, but for now it’s the one thing about these types of “cartoons to live action” aspects that I hate.
Bratty Teenage Daughter/Dumbass Teenage Son: Again, teens can’t have unique or complex personalities. If they’re a girl expect to always be a brat or bitchy or so stupid in life they can barely function. If they’re a guy then they always spend their time talking about girls and being dicks and failing school. The teenage girl can’t be nice or nerdy or smart, and the teenage boy can’t be competent or selfless. This perpetuates harmful stereotypes on both ends.
Other Tropes I hate or find irritating
- Strangled By the Red String
- Woman Scorned
- With Friends Like These
- Badass Decay
- Villain Decay
- Mentor Occupational Hazard
- Freudian Excuse
- Draco in Leather Pants
- Ron the Death Eater
- Spotlight Stealing Squad
- Designated Love Interest
- Official Couple
- Revenge by Proxy
- Idiot Hero
- Karma Houdini
- Jerk Sue
- Flat Character
- Darker and Edgier
- Dumb Muscle
- Love Dodecahedron
- Superhero fights another superhero
- Smurfette Principle
- Disproportionate Retribution
- Tangled by the Red String