Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Tuesday Talkback: Cliches you're sick of

If you come here regularly, you're pretty familiar with this blog being a sounding board for the bad writing cliches that I encounter daily.  What are your least favorite cliches?

Writers who only seem to tell stories to get on their particular hobby horse?

Gratuitious gross-out gags?

Gratuitious sex scenes?

Sex scenes that aren't gratuitious enough?

Protagonists who are irritatingly flawed?

Protagonists who are irritatingly perfect?

Weak female characters?

Strong female characters?

Airhead bimbo characters?

Panelists from Chelsea Lately selling sitcom pilots at an alarming rate?

People who use the comment sections on blogs to either shamelessly plug their 50 unsold scripts or state their personal pet peeves as if something that offends them was put there as a direct attack on their values?


  1. Or maybe it's not that they think it's a personal attack but rather they're bored/disgusted with seeing the same old thing all the time and are trying to convince writers to think of something new. I know that's what it is for me. Tired of the goofy fat best friend of the skinny chick. Tired of effeminate "b**ch please!" type gay guys. Tired of religion bashing. Just tired of the same old tropes every single movie and tv show.

    It's time for something new.

  2. This might be controversial, because some people LOVE this genre, but:


    Find a different monster folks! That's the cliché I'm sick of and I'm sticking to it!

  3. For me it's the female cop getting a call because her kid's sick and needs picking up from school in the middle of the day.

  4. @ Stephen - Totally agree with that one, only ever bought it in the Danish TV series Anna Pihl, every other time it's stupid.

    Personally it irritates me when so often it's the 'unattractive' girl who is 'the best person' in a show/film. From personal experience, ICB! You're not making a clever point about values!

  5. The manic pixie dream girl – ie, anything starring Zooey Deschanel. Oh she's so kooky!

  6. Cop shows in general. Okay there is drama and violence In the life of a police department but there are a lot of other stories out there in other areas of society which are worthy telling. Yet another police drama seems like an easy way out.

  7. I wince every time I see the device of a TV reporter and crew shooting a to-camera piece in front of a crime scene, conveniently laying plot pipe as we move on by them and find our actual characters.

  8. 'Hey, hey, I saw this movie. The black dude dies first!'