And just as you started to come to grips with that, you discovered you were The Chosen One and that this world depended on you.
Imagine you found yourself Trapped in Another Worldfar removed from everything you know with no promise you could ever go back. And just as you started to come to grips with that, you discovered you were The Chosen One and that this world depended on you.
And then your band of quirky companionswho had been your support, started to disappear one by oneleaving you alone with The Mole. And then the person you thought was your last friend betrayed you to the Big Badwho threw you into his dungeon and promised to execute you at dawn.
As you sit there in your chains, how do you feel?
If your answer is "well, a little sad — but who cares about that, it's escapin' time! The polar opposite of Wangstthis is when a character has been given every reason to fall into depression or go Ax-Crazybut They aren't The Stoic or the Determinator ; they aren't holding off their real feelings by an effort of will.
Nor are they putting on a brave face because they can't endure pity. They're just sort of rolling with it, riding out the adventure as it comes and looking ahead to the next plot event. This trope appears frequently in children's media, particularly adventure stories featuring young heroes who never Freak Out!
These protagonists take everything in stride. If anything, they think it's all impossibly cool and wish it would never end. Standard children would be forgiven if they burst into hysterics, but it isn't fun for usual children to read about other kids screaming in terror as their lives fall apart.
So fictional children don't. That said, it doesn't have to be an adventure story or a work specifically aimed at children, as any genre with horrible suffering is a good environment to show off this trope except the ones that thrive on the characters angsting, like soap operas.
The Deconstructed version of this trope exposes the calm protagonist as a Stepford Smilershowing nothing on the surface but breaking inside. Another alternate route goes that they may genuinely not be able to experience angst, whether through emotional detachment or social conditioning.
It is also possible to combine this trope with the Law of Disproportionate Responsecreating a character who overreacts to little things and underreacts to big things, all to show how mentally unstable they have become. Given how disliked Wangst is, you'd think this would be preferable, but any trope can be mishandled.
A character shrugging at trauma that would reduce an average Real Life person to emotional collapse or at least a few honest tears can definitely strain the audience's Willing Suspension of Disbelief and may even make some characters respond with genuine shock or confusion.
A character who does not react to suffering at all can come across as The Sociopath — hardly what this trope meant to express. Of course, similar to Wangstthis trope can be Played for Laughs as well.
Possibly Truth in Television for the more extreme cases. If you're fighting for your life, you don't have time to think about how awful it is — not at that very second, anyway. Afterward, all bets are off.
Also in some cases it could be presumed that mourning did happen, just offscreen. Compare Plot-Powered Staminawhere characters shrug off physical rather than emotional trauma and stress like it's nothing. Although she doesn't have any actual tragedy in her past, this still leaves her feeling a bit She might even fool herself, but she isn't fooling the viewers.
In Fruits BasketTohru is usually extremely cheerful and amiable, despite having a dead mother, working to pay for her own tuition and having been ostracised by her peers from an early age. She has a few lines, especially in the first couple of chapters, which reveal she's forcing herself to be strong because her mother wouldn't want her to be sad.
As it turns out, it's justified ; she is hurting inside and had closed up everything in a box that she didn't want to open, continuously happy so she can make other people around her glad. The anime however, which did not adapt the manga's latest chapters and therefore cut out a lot of Tohru's Character Development left out this bit in favor of making her a Purity Sue with no motivation.
Even though Naruto has no family and everyone around him hates him just for existing, he doesn't seem to have any angst at all, and further displays this trope in regards to being the jinchuriki of the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox, expressing little angst over the matter after he initially found out.
Probably the most shocking instance is in an event where he is confronted with the villain that's the direct reason he grew up an orphan and had the fox sealed inside of him.Latest breaking news, including politics, crime and celebrity. Find stories, updates and expert opinion.
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