There are some tropes I just never get tired of! This is a list of the five tropes in fiction that I personally love, so let’s get started!
#5: The Reluctant Hero/ Anti-Hero
I like this one a lot, particularly because the characters often seem rounder. You don’t get the pure, “good-two-shoes” stock hero with this trope, or as much self-righteousness. I like that there’s room for them to surprise the reader a bit with their actions. With a typical hero, you pretty much know what they will do/say a lot of the time, because it is the good/right thing. A reluctant hero questions the boundaries between the right/wrong decisions, and might not always do things that seem to fit the “good-guy” profile (Jessica Jones, anyone?). Don’t get me wrong, I like a good old-fashioned hero now and then, but I find that reluctant heros just often have a unique layer of complexity.
#4: Small Kinds With A Lot of Power
Again, I like this one because it challenges our expectations. Also, it’s usually pretty adorable.
I like that the five-year-old everybody thinks is just a cute little kid can throw a grown man across the street. I especially like this trope when the kids have the best powers, the ones that are kinda scary for anyone to have, let alone a child. If you’ve read the Maximum Ride series, you’ll remember Angel and her mind control/manipulation. This trope is a fun one, and I don’t think I’ll get tired of seeing it anytime soon.
#3: Friends to Couple
I think this trope can work very well–though I have to mention that sometimes it doesn’t work at all. I like that the relationships here are usually more well-developed because they were already friends. The platonic chemistry for a friendship has already been developed, so you won’t get any insta-romances, and the trust is usually well established. You don’t get as many of the relationships that make no sense, where the two have zero in common, don’t get along at all, only like each other for looks, etc.. Although that’s not to say they don’t happen. I like this trope a lot when it is done well, and the author has taken the proper time to make romantic chemistry for the love interests, but sometimes it can feel too forced or awkward, so just be forewarned of that if you decide to use it.
Another thing I like about this trope, is that the characters are made to navigate new relationship dynamics, and there is more risk involved. They have to figure out how things are different from how they used to be, and it has a way of making the familiar strange again. There is also more at stake for the characters, because they are often risking their friendship to explore these new relationships. It isn’t like starting from scratch as a romantic couple–if things go south, they could ruin that decade-long friendship.
#2: Villain Redeems/Hero Falls
I know these aren’t quite the same trope, but I love them for the same reasons. I like that it challenges our black and white understanding of good and bad. It shows that each person has the potential for both, and gives a more 3D outlook on the characters (similar to the reluctant hero). A villain redeeming themself or a hero falling to the dark side shows that people are often deeper than we expect. All people have human flaws and strengths, and there is reason behind both “good” and “bad” actions. It shows the reader that people who have done wrong can grow and change to be better, and also that nobody is incapable of choosing the wrong path/falling to temptation.
A villain isn’t a villain because they like to be “evil”, they justified their actions/choices to themselves somehow. Whether a villain redeems or a hero falls, we get to see the other side of the story. Overall, I like that it makes the characters more human, and shows the struggle of morality they face.
#1: Hero/Villain Frenemies
I could not love this trope more. I love it when the hero and the villain seem to really enjoy each other’s company/joke a lot, even though they are always fighting to the death and such. Think the Master and the Doctor from Doctor Who, or Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty. I just love the dynamics of this trope, and especially the humour that always accompanies it. It’s also nice to see a more complicated dynamic between the hero and villain, where killing the villain isn’t always pure celebration, but almost a sacrifice on the hero’s part.
Those are my top 5 tropes in fiction! Are any of these your favourites, too? Should I do a post on least favourites?
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