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This is amazing!

September 2, 2011

Well, to my mind it is – I find lots of things amazing. I promise this is pretty cool, whatever else you may think. It’s a site called Television Tropes and Idioms and is basically an encyclopaedia to the the TV devices that writers often use. Also, it’s just plain funny!  You can search a specific show, and they’ll have analysis of the different idioms the show uses, particularly in regards to characters, or you can just browse. When you think about it, these ‘tropes’ are everywhere – but the site expresses that there is a difference between a trope and a cliche.

These are some of my favourites:

The Worf Effect – Whenever the ‘monster’ or ‘baddie’ of the week shows up, it inevitably picks on the the ‘tough guy’ character, showing him up as…well, not so tough.

The Butt Monkey – That one character who is always the butt of demeaning jokes.

Gadgeteer Genius – There’s always a scientific genius somewhere…

What happened to the mouse? – A minor character or plot line is dropped and never seen again…

Psychotic Smirk – Speaks for itself…

There are literally hundreds, and hundreds of these!


From → Musings

  1. Alright, so I may or may not have spent the last hour lost in this site. It is crazy the amount of detail they have and the level of analysis they go into. This is such a good find!

    I had actually never heard of the term trope before I checked out this site, but it is interesting to see the distinction they make between trope and cliche. And I have to agree with them as well. I would hardly have spent the last hour going through this site if all it contained was a bunch or boring cliches.

    This will actually be a pretty handy resource for the group assignment at the end of semester. It offers some interesting insights and possible lines of argument to take about certain characters and episodes. I’ll definitely be keeping this one on hand.

    But I also like how it extends to a whole range of other media forms as well. And it’s a pretty extensive list as well.

    Probably my favourite tropes to look at are about breaking the fourth wall:

    Once again, nice find!

  2. nnoell permalink

    Like Michael, I spent ages on the site. I was genuinely intrigued. To be honest, I have never come across the term trope and for awhile, I couldn’t really tell the difference between trope and cliche. Then it started to hit me at how oblivious I have been all my life. How genius writers must be to manipulate their audiences.

    Bilingual Dialogues has got to be one of my favourites. It probably took me five minutes just to get through that page!

    Thanks for sharing the laughs!

  3. I got laughs when checking out the site. Nice find! I was also wondering what “trope” was until I checked out the site. I guess this is where most pop culture references were originated from. I laughed even more after browsing for more stuff, definitely made my day! Thanks!

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