So, Wing and I have decided to use counters in our recaps going forwards, just to see how often tropes crop up and which books/authors are the worst offenders. I suppose this means we’re going back through our old recaps and adding them in. Believe it or not, Wing and I lead very busy lives.
Edit: Wing and Dove have already, after only a week, added four more counters.
The counters may not be entirely accurate for any books before Arcadia 2: Room 13, because we brought them in, and then scored previous books based on our recaps. I happen to know that Beach House has dozens of “Dun-Dun-DUNNNNN!”, but I got bored of mentioning them all the time.
The terms and definitions are as follows (more as they become necessary):
An evil woman that commands the attention of men.
Cheer on the killer
Because the protagonist is such an insufferable wretch that you can’t help but side with anyone who wants him or her dead.
Continuity? Fuck that shit
Because why stick to what was said last chapter? Or even last sentence. Make it up as you. If your lead character says it, it MAKES IT SO!
Cultural Appropriation, Ahoy!
Headdresses and bhindis and tribal tattoos, oh my.
DED FROM STUPID
Exactly what it says on the tin. If you do not understand this trope, then you are the cause of this trope.
Dexter would not pull this shit
When the idiotic killer leaves evidence around to fuck with the protagonist, rather than cleaning up after him/herself and trying to get away with it.
Yes, I know there is a later episode where Dexter does, in fact, leave a body lying around. Let’s move on.
Cliffhanger endings of chapters for no reason other than to build false tension and piss me and Wing the hell off.
If you need this explaining, you probably live a life filled with #FirstWorldProblems
Fuck My Little Pony! Friendship is not magic! (previously All my friends are a bag of dicks)
Something strange and evil is happening. Since I hate all of my BFFs, it’s bound to be one of them. This trope changed to a much cooler (and grammatically correct) phrase on 23 August 2014. Anything before that might have the old trope name in the post, but will be appropriately tagged in the trope-specific tag list.
Gimme a blindfold and some stupidity
“I didn’t see anything” or “I’m sorry, I don’t remember anything about the accident”, because either would lead us to the bad guy, and we’ve still got twelve chapters to go.
He’s dead! He’s dead! HE’S FUCKING DEAD! … oh wait, he survived
Where the story tries to convince us that there really is a body count, only to later reveal the victim only sustained minor injuries.
He’s the killer! He’s the killer! He’s … my LOVAH!
The protagonist has spent 200 pages convinced he’s the bad guy, but now we’ve found the real killer, they’re going to start a relationship. Uh-huh.
Head injury? Walk it off
Because a concussion is a mild inconvenience, not a medical situation and it can be cured by grit and determination.
Hypocrites are hypocritical
Because it’s ok, when you do it.
I beat you because I love you
Abusive relationships in any way, shape or form.
I hate the hot chick! (And she hates me.)
Because girls can’t be friends, AMIRIGHT? For some reason, this girl, who is utterly desirable in the looks department, hates the ever-loving fuck out of our protagonist. And, despite claiming to not care, our protagonist makes digs about her all the time.
Incest is relative
Yeah, so his dad is dating my mom, but I would totally give him one.
ME! It’s all about ME!!!
All the horror the characters are going through? It’s all about ME.
An attempt is made to casually reference something that is clearly going to be a plot point at a later date. And it fails to be casual.
Mental health: with tact and sensitivity
Essentially, “crazy” is a blanket term for a bad person with no qualms about killing anyone and everyone. Often because they are “crazy”. Because that’s how mental health works.
Misogyny is for pussies
Ah, fuck wimmin, right? I mean, they’re only good for being hysterical weird creatures. It’s not like they’re people or anything.
Bad guy POV. Double points if the bad guy actually does an evil laugh.
My, that’s awfully convenient
“Oh, gee! You mean Billy-Bob has the exact information we need? What are the odds?”
Oh you wacky kids, with your hi-jinks and your pranks
“You say you found a corpse of a thirteen year old girl on the beach? Oh, you’re just pulling my leg.”
When the protagonist experiences something genuinely frightening, such as finding a corpse, or that someone has been in their room while they were home alone, and it is treated as an attention-seeking prank.
Or, when something is done that is written off as a prank or a joke, but is actually pretty damned spiteful.
Parents? What parents?
They’re in fucking Europe. They’re always in fucking Europe.
Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit
What it says on the tin. Foreshadowing that is pointless.
Racism: business as usual
If you’re lucky enough to see a person of colour in any of these books, they’ll be stereotyped to the hilt.
Fairly obvious, but in Point Horror, there’s basically a neon sign above them stating “sinister as fuck”.
Roses are red, Violets are blue, I’m going to fucking kill you
When the bad guy leaves whimsical notes for no apparent reason. Possibly he or she only does it to piss Wing off.
This recap is sponsored by the WWE
Recap! Recap! Recap! Something happened last chapter. Tell us about it! Tell it again. Then tell it one more time. Because otherwise we’ll forget. (Named because if you watch WWE, you only need to watch 20 minutes a week, the recaps will take care of the rest.)
Too cool for school
When the character is just too fucking cool to be dealing with mundane shit.
Well, that escalated quickly
Yeah, ok, so maybe the bad guy motivation isn’t quite as strong as you might hope.
World of fail
It’s meant to be scary or threatening or disturbing, and, in all honesty, it’s kinda boring.
[Wing: Updated World of Fail because “lame” is ableist. I apologize for our use of it, and we will do better going forward.]
[Dove: I am someone who is literally lame, I have a 1.5 inch difference in the length of my legs, I walk with a permanent limp. I always have, I always will. I have a mobility-related disability. I have been called “limpet”, “lame-o”, “hopalong”, “carousel”, “up-and-down” and plenty of other names all my life. I have been bullied and mocked during PE by everyone from the teachers to my own friends. I have been told by able-bodied people that I’m just putting it on, because a real disability would mean I couldn’t walk at all. I’ve been told I’m just not trying. I’ve been told I’m attention seeking. I’ve had a lot of words thrown at me, so fuck that shit. I’m keeping the use of “lame” in my vocabulary. I’ve earned it.]
[Wing: Dove and I clearly disagree about the use of ableist terms in our tags, and though I do not argue with whether she can reclaim it, I don’t think that using it as a negative term in the tropes is returning power to people who can reclaim it, and I will not be using it.]