Top Story Clichés
Gathered and Organized by Haidan Dong
The Main Character
1. Is without question an orphan.
2. If main character is a girl, she is clever, pretty and resourceful.
3. If main character is a boy, he is brave, sensitive and good at solving riddles.
4. May have had their parents divorced or moved recently to a new town.
1. Either has twice the amount of skills as the main character, or none at all.
2. If first choice, he/she is very annoyed at the main character.
3. If second choice, he/she provides 80% of all the comic relief.
4. Will always be the opposite gender of the main character.
1. Great heroes come in trios. Period.
2. If the main character is a guy, the other two will be a girl and a guy.
3. If the main character is a girl, the other two will both be girls as well.
4. The Trio will have someone who is brave (main character), someone who is funny and someone who is annoyed at the other two.
The Person Who Likes/Is Liked By the Main Character
1. If main character is a girl, the guy will be mysterious with blue eyes.
2. If main character is a guy, the girl will be smart and occasionally annoying.
3. He/she will not be in the Trio.
4. If he/she does happen to be in the Trio, their liking of one another will not be emphasized in the story.
1. The Ultimate Bad Guy wants to: a) Take over somewhere or b) Destroy a certain place.
2. If male, has either a beard or a goatee.
3. Has magic ten times more powerful than the good dudes have.
4. Has a sidekick as well.
5. They tend to like to wear long flowy things.
The Villain’s Sidekick
1. Appears very pathetic and cowardly until otherwise proven.
2. Is often more evil than the villain.
3. Is alarmingly good at flattery.
1. Is ancient and has a one-meter long beard.
2. If the mentor is not old, then they are the main character’s parents.
3. Often has magical powers that match the villain’s.
4. Also likes to wear long flowy things.
1. Is the villain’s sidekick.
2. Is a good acquaintance of the main character, never the main character’s best friend or worst social life enemy.
3. Is good-looking.
4. Backstabs the main characters and the next time he/she appear is with their master, the villain.
5. Only characters from the good side betray their team. Evil characters hardly ever become good.
1. There will be a young person who can or is trying to work with magic.
2. If there is a slight chance that there might be dragons, there will be.
3. Female magic-users are always smart.
4. Aside from the main character, all guys will use large, heavy weapons and all girls will use small, convenient weapons.
5. The main character uses a sword.
1. The prince is meant to be good-looking. Even after all these years. And the princess always wants to get out of the castle.
2. The chief advisor is ALWAYS evil.
3. Slaves are always on the good side, and if they’re not, they will be by the end of the story.
4. The guards will make a terrifying racket when trying to catch the main character, but they are never successful.
· Red: Courage, honour, the main character
· White: Tranquillity, goody-goodies, mystical people
· Black: Evil, mastery, the villain
· Green: Elves, nature, wilderness
· Blue: Powerful allies, secrecy, mysteriousness
· Gold: Power, justice, awesome sight
· Purple: Royalty, wealth, luxury
· Grey: Sadness, old age, secondary villains
· Pink: Little kiddies, girlishness, romance
· Yellow: Thirsty, frying, warm
· Brown: Toughness, practicality, strength
· Turquoise: Beauty, rarity, mystic components
· Other colours appear very seldom in story clichés
1. If the story has a Trio, it will be either a mystery or adventure story.
2. If it takes place in a setting where the wizards’/ mages’/ other magic-users’ names are unpronounceable with too many accents, it’s going to be a “stereotypical fantasy.” (e.g. dragons, elves…)
3. For love stories, you can predict who the main character is going to end up with the very first time they meet.
4. In every story, there is a time when the main character hits rock bottom and it will be up to either the sidekick or another very close and wise friend to comfort them.
5. The villain will never convert to the good side in the end. They’ll always die or get captured.