10 Characters From TV Shows Who Hide Their Intelligence (2023)

TV characters are often simpler than real people, and one area where they are simplified is intelligence. On TV, characters are often either "smart" or "stupid" without the range of different intelligences that people can have in the real world.

RELATED:10 movie characters who hide their intelligence

However, some TV characters pretend to be stupid when they are actually very smart. Whether it's for a simpler life, to be underestimated by others, or even for the sake of others, some TV characters act as if they don't have intelligence when deep down they have great intellectual wealth.


10 Merlin is considered a simple drunk

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The main conflict at the heart of theEsmerejonis that the main character is essential to protecting Camelot and its royal family from the magical threats they face, but cannot reveal himself in the process. Uther made the practice of magic punishable by death long before the show began, and the injunction remains throughout the show.

Merlin often has to tell mountains of lies and ends up in situations or absences that he cannot reasonably explain. The result is that most people mistake Merlin for an unintelligent servant who spends too much time in the tavern, when in fact he is one of Camelot's smartest and most passionate defenders.

9 Jimmy McGill is a much better lawyer than he looks

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In the first introduction toBreaking Bad, Jimmy "Saul Goodman" McGill comes across as a sleazy, low-quality small-town attorney that most people would do better to avoid. He emphasizes this look with cheesy TV commercials, scruffy demeanor, and fast speech that often means little.


as shown inBreaking Bad,and much clearerEBetter call Saul, McGill is indeed very intelligent and a very capable lawyer. Working with his clients, he proves to be a master of the legal and illegal means of laundering money and avoiding legal consequences, along with his great ability to think and plan.

8 One of Saffron's disguises is acting without intelligence.

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One offireflySaffron's few recurring antagonists are a con man and crook who appears more than once to manipulate Malcolm Reynolds and his team to his own ends. One of his deadliest abilities is the ability to use a variety of disguises and false faces and act as a completely different person when necessary.

After Mal inadvertently marries Saffron when they first meet, she comes across as a kind but reserved and not particularly bright woman who simply wants to be a good wife. Only after knocking Mal out does she show herself to be very capable and intelligent, setting a trap for the entire crew and almost outwitting them.

7 Moriarty briefly films as "IT Jim"

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When James Moriarty, Sherlock Holmes' nemesis, first appearssherlock, he does so in the guise of "Jim from IT", Molly Hooper's boyfriend.It's only later in this episode.he reveals himself to be the "Napoleon of Crime" from the original stories.

While Moriarty probably played "Jim" quite intelligently, there's nothing to suggest that the character had Moriarty's genius intelligence to make him seem less threatening and allow him to mess with Sherlock.

6 Daenerys Targaryen plays on her inexperience from time to time

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observer ofTo War Two ThronesI know full well that Daenerys Targaryen is an intelligent character and capable ruler who, despite her relatively sheltered life and inexperience when the show begins, shows clear cunning. After time passes and he accumulates his powers, he is not afraid to show his intelligence to the fullest.


However, early on in the show, before Daenerys has established a power base for herself, she sometimes emphasizes her lack of knowledge and experience so that people will underestimate her. The most notable example of this is in Season 3, when he spends his time in Astapor pretending not to be able to speak Valyrian, willingly acting to trade a priceless dragon for slave soldiers. Only after the deal is finalized does she reveal her true ruse.Have Drogon kill the slave traderand ordered his new soldiers to plunder the city.

5 Sergeant Schultz claims to know nothing.

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However, a German POW is an extraordinarily sympathetic character in a sitcom.Hogans Heldenintroduces viewers to Sergeant Schultz, one of the guards at Luft Stalag 13 and a kind of ally of the main characters.

Throughout the show, Schultz's catchphrase, which he utters when he catches the protagonists involved in an anti-German conspiracy, is to loudly declare, "I don't know anything" before looking away. However, he is said to be aware of everything going on, and on the few occasions he does rise to a management role, he is shown to be extremely good at his job.

4 Oliver Queen lives up to his playboy reputation

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A common tactic used by superheroes to protect their secret identity is to highlight the unheroic or unintelligent aspects of that identity, making it seem ridiculous that they could be a hero in disguise. InSeta, which is exactly what Oliver Queen does, like the hard-partying playboy everyone still thinks he is.

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As the audience and many other characters know, Oliver is an intelligent, wise, and responsible hero who, at worst, suffers from occasional lapses in judgment. Over time, he tries to play down that reputation, especially when he'sinterrupt your professional lifeoff your watch.

3 Lydia Martin is a genius posing as Ditz

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When Lydia Martin is first introducedteen wolf, she appears to be something of a teen movie cliché: the popular jock's girlfriend, who is spiteful and manipulative but not very smart. From the third episode of the series, however, he points out some hidden chasms. After a mediocre game of bowling, she lands a perfect hit just as her boyfriend gives chase.

This is just the tip of the iceberg, as Lydia is the smartest character in the cast. She is characterized by excellent mathematical and scientific knowledge, knowledge of Latin and broad general knowledge. She initially hides her intelligence to improve her reputation and keep her friend happy.

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In the first introduction tobuffy dies vampire, and extends to his first appearances inEngel, Cordelia Chase seems like little more than everyone imagines: a frivolous, conceited schoolgirl who isn't particularly bright, even as she becomes a better person.


However, there are cluesleukocytethat he's smarter than he lets on, including near-perfect scores on his SATs, and after character development inEngel, she is almost unrecognizable in this capacity. Definitelythe most emotionally intelligent member of Angel's teamShe is also intuitive and resourceful.

1 Carol Peletier feigns helplessness as a defense mechanism

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After his earlier time inthe undeadthey issuelargely meek and helplessIn the shadow of her abusive husband, Carol Peletier is emerging as one of the show's most capable survivors.Deadly, intelligent and somewhat ruthless., Carol is nobody's fool.

However, when meeting new people, Carol greatly diminishes these aspects of herself, pretending to be shy, inexperienced and insecure. This is best seen when you first visit Alexandria and the Hilltop, but it reappears from time to time. Carol trusts very few people and she does this so that people will look down on her until she can figure out her motives and evaluate her.

NEXT:Cartoon Network: The 10 Smartest Cartoon Villains, Ranked

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