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A cliché is anything that is overused, often to the point of being rendered meaningless. Although the use of clichés is generally avoided in great pieces of literature, film, and theater, they can also be employed for humor in satire. Clichés often grow from archetypes.

In literary fiction, clichés often take the form of predictable characters, situtations, or settings; for example, the stereotypical peg-legged pirate searching for treasure.

Movie clichés are similar to the ones found in literature, with a particular focus on predictable situtations. For example, a common film cliché is for a fruit stand to be knocked over during a chase sequence. Another cliche, it could be said, is when a killer is killed in an horror movie, only to be revived for the next sequel.

Clichés vs. Archetypes

See also List of clichés.