Sometimes, a narrative convention is so ingrained in literature that writers reach for it even after it becomes clear that it's not so much "classic" as "offensive." What trope do you see time and time again that simply makes you cringe?

A big one that bothers us is the convention that has become known as "fridging" after the scene in Green Lantern #54 in which Kyle Rayner discovers that Alex DeWitt has been murdered and stuffed into a refrigerator. Gail Simone coined the term "Women in Refrigerators" to describe the frequency with which women are killed or injured, often for the sake of motivating a male character. The fact that it happens so often is, frankly, obnoxious, because it turns women into mere props in men's stories. It's a story device that writers should think hard about before using.

Advertisement

What about you? What trope do you find so offensive (not merely irritating) that you feel it should be put out of its misery—at least for a while? Tell us why it's offensive and offer an example in the comments.