In fiction, its apparently very hard for the wealthy to avoid being either aRich BitchorSpoiled Sweet, both are scorned by the average man. Many savvy characters spot this trend and hide their wealth. For some, theyve even been separated from the family, and are wealthy in name only. Expect these characters to be kind, caring and generally the opposite of aRich Bitch, so that the reveal of their wealth is more shocking.
InReal Life, there are several advantages to attempting this. Large wealth disparity tends to create serious rifts in casual social interaction; friends of a lower income class may secretly resent you, or expect large monetary gifts and favors. On the other side of the coin, it is also hard to know who likes you for yourself, and who only likes you for your money (this is a reason many rich people only cavort amongst their own class). In addition, those who are known to be wealthy arefrequent targets for lawsuits, and family members may even be targeted for kidnapping by those looking for a ransom. Hiding your wealth can prevent many problems like these.
CompareKing Incognito, where the secret might be some other type of power besides wealth,Slumming It, where this is donefor fun, andAffluent Asceticwhere a person whos known to be rich chooses to live modestly or even spartanly. See alsoNon-Idle Rich, for when the wealthy person works a regular job for fulfillment and/or helping others. ContrastMock Millionaire.
has Lucy, who ran away from home to get away from her overbearing father, whose thoughts were only about profit.
, specifically, hes the heir to the Rock Foundation. AndHe Cleans Up Nicelytoo.
is from a wealthy family but nobody at her high school knew about that until her younger sister came for a visit.
lives in near poverty with her daughter. She makes plastic flowers and such for money and often needs help from Ryushi to complete whatever junk she and her daughter are making to survive. Their furniture and bedding are the cardboard boxes for shipping the flowers. Turns out she ran away from home to marry someone her father disapproved of. She comes from an extraordinarily wealthy family and she and her father appear to make up their differences though she continues to live with her daughter in poverty.
is very rich, with only the fabulously wealthy Ayaka even coming close. Not that youd ever know this by looking at her. Even her roommate was unaware until she actually visited KonokasBig Fancy House. Even after the reveal, she never makes a big deal out of it, the only real mention of her wealth was when Jack Rakan nonchalantly billed her father 5,000,000 drachmae for helping her friends.
Very late in the manga, its revealed that Chizuru is also extremely wealthy, but like Konoka, she never makes mention of it or flaunts her wealth.
Fate Averruncus might be an example also. Hes taken in and given shelter to
girls who are all war orphans and sent them all(minus his minstra) to good private schools.
, Kumin mentions that Dekomori drove them. Cue them panning to a Mercedes-looking car with a stern looking MIB next to it.
hes rich, being the heir to a powerful family empire and all, just not to what extent. Hes also not aRich Bitch, considering he uses his cash to try and be the top delinquent at Ishiyama High and does
how to fight, rather than stick with his friend and try to rule the country.
is extremely sensitive about the fact that her family is filthy rich. She is unable to hide that fact completely, but she does her best to not draw attention to this. At one point in the manga, the other girls thank her for all shes done for them with her wealth
such as getting them good deals at her familys music store or letting them practice in one of their many vacation houses
. She actually gets upset by this,wondering how they figured out shes rich(Mio wonders how she believed they
:Child ProdigyChiyo skipped some grades and attends High School despite being of grade school age. Shes so excited about being a high schooler she decided to get a part-time job because highschoolers usually have that sort of job. Her employer hired her because he thinks she must be poor to be desperate enough to forge a high schooler card. Since he never told her what he thinks, shes oblivious to the misunderstanding. Shes actually wealthy (though she never sets out to deliberately hide that fact, its just unimportant to her so she rarely ever brings it up).
, Kanades savings account is on par with the national budget.
This is an indirect side effect of herPower of Creationit has theNecessary Drawbackof having the created objects price immediately deducted from the said account.
Her sister Akane doesnt even know that until Kanade tells her.
is revealed to come from a wealthy family with several mansions and butlers at his disposal. James, however, is not proud of himself for this at all as his parents are, who are more concerned about having their son inherit their fortune and continuing the family line, even if it means having him marry.
: In the mangas twelfth chapter, Tanukichi and the others are surprised when they find out Ayame is the adoptive daughter of the Kiyomonsou Family, which owns a luxurious ousen hotel.
: Misty is rich but you wouldnt know this by looking to her. Red is surprised by herBig Fancy House.
, one would never guess that Changeling (Beast Boy) was heir to his adoptive fathers estate – and Steve Dayton made Bruce Wayne look middle-class by comparison!
one of his heirs. Thanks to this, she was able to buy shares in
Sugarcube Corner and keep it running (and able to live in the cupcake).
to be a secret. She just forgot to mention it. Also, consider
she lives with the Cakes, works with them, and frequently foalsits their children. All because shes passionate about sweets.
Nelson made a fortune from an internet business
but keeps a low profile to preserve his street cred.
: Ben reveals that when he was 10 years old, he usedGrey Matterto file a highly successful, multi-million dollar cease-and-desist lawsuit against the creators ofSuper Alien Hero Buddy Adventures, which illegally used the likenesses ofHeatblastFour Arms, andWildmutt. Ben also adds that he regularly uses Grey Matter, whos apparently really good at bookkeeping, to handle his fortune. Ben doesnt want anyone to know this because he already has enough problems being famous, if everyone knew he was also rich, hed get no peace.
: Investing his combat pay wisely (precognitioncertainly helped to make wise investments) Shinji became very rich in a short period of time. And no one knew how much money he had.
Shinjis net worth had tripled in the past four days, and he was already covertly moving to expand that wealth further still. Money attracted more money, and within another two to three months his income from his investments would start exceeding his income from his NERV salary, to say nothing of his net worth. Within a year he could easily become one of the richest individuals in Japan.
And no one would know just how much money he had. Offshore accounts were a wonderful thing.
is the daughter of Ryota Go, a crazy rich politician thats running for mayor of San Fransokyo. She never told anyone except Honey Lemon because her father is about as warm and friendly as an iceberg and they have been estranged ever since she moved out.
turns out to come from a wealthy family with a mansion, butler and private helicopter. He uses his money to fund the teams armor upgrades. Before that, he was just seen as a local nerd with a huge fascination forKaijuwith absolutely no hints of his rich side; one of the other cast members even said that she thought he lived under a bridge somewhere.
. He started out rich, goes on to be a tramp, makes the money back and uses it to help the other tramps.
. Even when we first meet him, its clear that hes reasonably affluent, but whenCleofinds out exactly how wealthy he is, she decides to marry him. This goes poorly for everyone involved.
. This guy starts out as a handyman, but we find out later that he owns oil wells and some nice property.
. Looks like an everyday working joe, but is actually the son of a rich New England family.
, it is revealed that Nicolas, whos the owner of a small shop, after his death left a sizable inheritance to his wife, Andrea, this is why the cop of the movie suspects Andrea of conspiring with her lover to murder both Nicolas and
her lovers wife, although it is later revealed that both Andrea and her lover were truly ignorant of all the money Nicolas had in his name
, comes from wealth, but ran away from home. His wealth comes back to his advantage by the end of the film.
: In the third movie, Ma Flodder almost marries a hobo that she fell in love with. It turns out that hes actually the head of an incredibly wealthy family and he wanted to get away from his demanding heirs for once.
, the main characters are under the impression they have about eleven euros between them after running away from a mental institution together. Then one of the group reveals that he has about 17,000 euros (about 20,000 USD) from his orphans pension.
becomes very wealthy from his shrimping business but continues to live a modest lifestyle in spite of it. When he tells his story to some strangers at a bus stop, no one believes hes wealthy until he shows them a picture of himself (actually a picture of Lt. Dan, but he was in the picture as well) on the cover of Fortune magazine.
: Angiers works as a humble magicians assistant, but secretly comes from an aristocratic family.
byIain Banksis a former member and principal songwriter for a highly successful rock band in the 70s and 80s. When we meet him, he lives as a lonely recluse in a Scottish castle (which he owns) writing advertising jingles to stave off the boredom. His only real friend is aviolently passionate socialistwith whom he spends regular drinking time, and who is unaware of his fame and fortune, having led him to believe that he is the castles caretaker instead of its owner.
is Rachel rocked to discover her boyfriend Nick isnt just from a wealthy family. Rather, his family has more money than God but often downplays how amazingly rich they are. Nick himself explains he wanted to make friends in America without them knowing he was so well-off and actually enjoys how even rich people have no idea hes the one percent of the one percent.
byTerry Pratchett, William DeWorde has had a falling out with his family and lives on around $50 a month, although since
is a pastiche of Middle Ages/Renaissance fantasy, 50 Ankh-Morpork dollars ($AM) a month is a fair amount of money.
For comparisons sake, members of the Watch, the police force, make 30 dollars a month and are considered reasonably well paid.
William gets his income from various rich and powerful individuals outside Ankh-Morpork who pay him for writing to them about the general goings-on of the city. He figures out that the rich do not really want to see a member of their class live in poverty so they support him under this pretense. Only later does he realize how powerful what he does can be.
Susan Sto Helit is technically a Duchess but has no patience for the job, and instead takes jobs like governess and school teacher. Her employers, a wealthy couple in their own right, were rather shocked to discover that one of their servants was posher than them.
rich can afford to act poor. Those who are only pretty rich will buy fancy clothes and jewelry and homes to try to make themselves seem much richer, but those who are supremely wealthy dont need to. Why buy new furniture when the stuff your grandparents bought was so good that it has lasted all these years? Why dress nicely when you dont need to work so you can devote all your time to messy hobbies like raising swamp dragons? And ironically, this allows them to
rich. Sybil Ramkin is the best example, but Lady Margolotta and the Dowager Duchess of Quirm also qualify. And Sybils husband Sam Vimes was born poor but is now the richest man in the city. So naturally, he prefers dented armor and cheap boots to the finery his station allows.
Except cigars. He likes the good cigars he can afford now that hes loaded.
On an organizational level, the impoverished-seeming Beggars Guild is actually by far the wealthiest guild in Ankh-Morpork, simply because its existed for centuries and never pays for
its members can beg or scrounge. Even their Guilds coat-of-arms was begged off somebody else.
,Rachel Elizabeth Dareis pretty much an enigma, but one time she walks up to a random chauffeur, says a few things, and suddenly he ditches his customer and takes the Olympians where they want to go. Turns out shes this trope.
, we havePiperandFrank. Pipers classmates at her old school
caught on that her dad is a famous Hollywood movie star, while Franks initial awkwardness and insecurity belie his familys old money.
byDean Koontz, Christopher Snows best friend Bobby is this.
. Two Okies discuss a Broadway play about a rich man and a rich woman who pretend to be poor in order to find true love. The entire premise confuses the heck out of the second Okie, who doesnt understand why a rich person would screw out with such a ridiculousZany Scheme. Theres a depression going on, and the Okies are standing in line hoping to get work so they dont starve to death. The second Okie explains, very annoyed, that if he were rich hed just sit in his penthouse eating steaks all day and hes incredulous that an actual rich person would do anything different.
Alexander Koreiko is hiding his millions because he cant use his money in the Soviet Union and so he lives like a poor man (almost bordering on poverty), working on extremely low pay job, and basically all his possessions are two iron kettlebells to keep himself in good health all to live for the day Soviet regime falls. The book is set in the 1920s…
Jill Mastrano was left heiress to a fortune by her father Eric Dragomir. She will inherit this when she reaches adulthood. Her mother Emily, however, kept this a secret from her and raised her as a middle-class child. So Jill was secretly wealthy but was unaware of the secret, herself
, Jerin meets Cira and almost immediately knows that shes richer than she seems. His family has worked as spies for some generations, and keep up the traditions, so he knows what to look for.
has what looks to be a minor subplot of Albert Wells, an elderly guest, having health issues. Christine, secretary to the hotels owner, looks after him, concerned about his worn-down clothing and has a manager checking on his money to be told hes ok. Wells is nursed to health and upset when Christine tells him the hotel is going to be sold to Curtis OKeefe who will turn the classic hotel into just another one of his chain. Over dinner, Wells tells Christine and boyfriend/manager Peter a tale of how he seemed to be ripped off in a gold mine by his partner only for his partner to reveal he had actually made sure he kept his fortune. Wells thus informs the dumbfounded pair that hes actually one of the richest men in the country who owns several properties…and just bought this very hotel.
The staff is naturally thrown by this with the accountant moaning over actually calling about Wells credit. Chuckling, Wells lawyer says that because the man like a low-key appearance, his bank is long used to people calling unaware of how rich Wells is.
. A trio of adult children tries to find a boyfriend for their widowed mother Phyllis so shell stop interfering in their lives. They seem to find a suitor in Monty, a man known for his rich life who promises Phyllis some terrific times and whisks her to the islands. The kids then discover the guy lost all his money and are thus convinced hes a con artist about to bilk her. They race to stop the wedding only to learn Monty did lose his cash but ended up becoming richer than ever. As Phyllis explains, his first bankruptcy made him realize who his friends were andwho they werentas his wife of the time dumped him without a second thought as soon as he was poor. So Monty decided to keep his new wealth quiet to find a woman who loved him for himself and now Phyllis can enjoy her senior years married in wealth.
: Past the first book, Ender has sufficient money tobuy entire planetsif he felt like it, but he lives very simply and never uses more than he needs. Several characters assume their computer has malfunctioned when they see exactly how much money Ender has, and are amazed that
, partly because hes a conspiracy theorist who thinks that old money, like his family, totally controls the world. Considering how influential his family is as major supporters of the Jeffersonian Institute, he probably also hides his connections so he will be judged on his own merits. He actually lives in a mansion, but since nobody from work ever visits him at home, nobody realizes that he has lots of money. This is gradually averted over the course of the first two seasons as all the other major cast members find out about his wealth. Finally becomes
no longer the case after serial killer Pelant forced him into aSadistic Choice: shut down a computer server to keep Pelant from draining his accounts, or keep the server running in order to stop the military drone that would blow up a school in the Middle East. Hodgins doesnt hesitate to sacrifice his wealth to save the innocent lives.
He does end up somewhat rich again later, but its known then.
, Summer meets and is courted by Che (played byChris Pratt), a hippy student who claims to have grown up on a reservation and is generally very mellow and seemingly down-to-earth. After his final failed attempt to win Summers heart, his chauffeur turns up to escort Master Winchester home.
. She serves as a police detective and this fact becomes quite useful when someone attempts to bribe her. It is also the reason she is in homicide as the captain doesnt totally trust his people and knows that she would be incorruptible because of this.
turned out to be this; in a subversion ofVampires Are Rich; the Vampire world discouraged it because it led to unfortunate questions that threatened theMasqueradeif ones current role didnt match the funds they had. He was slowly and secretly giving it away.
Shawn is shocked to discover that Mr. Turner comes from big money and became a high school teacher after turning his back on his parents wealth.
comes from a very wealthy family, but is estranged because his father was so eccentric and childish that Hal felt he was never a very good parent, while the rest of the family strongly disapproves of Hals wife. Hal and his family dont seem to receive any financial support from the family, despite their frequent money troubles. It is later revealed when Hals father dies that his father lost it all.
, London Tipton pretended to be poor to date a man who hates rich people. However, when she had enough of the poor lifestyle, she confessed the truth and her boyfriend said he doesnt mind because she turned out to be nicer than he expected from rich people. She was just acting nice but didnt believe when people told him that.
. Harry Dresden, as in the book series, lives in a small apartment without much in the way of amenities. However, here he is the sole surviving heir of Justin Morningway, Harrys uncle and an extremely wealthy and powerful wizard in his own right. Justin died after attacking Harry after Harry found out he had killed his father several years earlier. Both out of guilt and contempt, Harry has always refused to claim his inheritance, sticking to his apartment, refusing any money from his uncles estate, and keeping Morningways mansion in mothballs.
appears to be this at least in part. Jo knows about his success, and its possible Mac knows, but no one else has given any indication of knowing it thus far. Although as of Kill Screen, the piano in the morgue might have been a tipoff…
More of the team has found out, but he also gave a lot of his money away after learning he had cancer.
: Bud Roberts is at first shocked upon realizing that his then-fiance Harriet Sims comes from a wealthy family when visiting her parents in Florida for the first time in Yesterdays Heroes.
is revealed to scrimped and saved money over the years, to the point where he currently has a few thousand pounds in his bank account.
. His friends know that his parents in India are well-off (his father is a gynecologist), but a later episode reveals that, in Sheldons words, Theyre not just rich. TheyreRichie Richrich.
is a hipster who pretends to be as working class as her housemates, but actually isfinanced entirely by her parents, owns a horse and was raised in a huge house. Shes mortified when this becomes public, but its not all that surprising considering shes incrediblyRich in Dollars, Poor in Sense.
lives in a small apartment and works as a teacher, but his family is actually very wealthy
, Schultz revealed that he was the owner of the Schotze company, one of the oldest and most successful toy companies in Germany.
. There was even a B-story in which Detective Green notes that Fontana dresses in tailored suits, drives a $100,000 car, and lives in a penthouse condo and wonders how he can afford all that on a cops salary. Turns out that Fontanas grandfather was the original Chef Luigi (aBland-Name Productversion of Chef Boyardee) and Fontana has been living on his share of the family fortune since he was a teenager.
a young teen is with a family of homeless people whose father just murdered a rich girl for insulting him. The detectives are shocked when the girls parents arrive, revealing that shes from a posh Park Avenue complex. Benson and Stabler (who have met countless abused kids) clearly cant believe it when this girl complains that her life in a penthouse and private schools was torture that she wanted to escape. It takes a turn when her mother reveals that her daughter and the victim once went to the same school. Benson and Stabler realize that the girl encouraged her father to kill the other teen before she could reveal her secret.
The man is outraged when he learns this as at the girls own trial for second-degree murder, he snaps on how she now sits in an expensive dress and jewels when he knew her as a street urchin. He points out that he may be a killer but at least hes not a hypocrite.
Special Agent David Siegel, Neal Caffreys new handler in Season 5 of
The moment they meet, Neal pegs him for this, which Siegel confirms when he says he can afford an apartment in a pricey part of New York (albeit not on his FBI salary), and that he has a yacht.
, just as Max is getting close to fellow chef Deke, Caroline discovers the supposed weed-smoking slacker who lives in a garbage bin apartment is actually from a wealthy family. Max is furious at the truth and does her best to break up with Dekes who refuses to listen.
: I could never date someone who has tons of money!
: We are massively, monumentally different people.
Dekes teaches her a lesson by giving Max a million dollars and Max realizes how the temptation of so much money can affect her dreams of her own cupcake shop. However, she decides Dekes is better off without her and they break up.
Billy meets Zoe, a streetwise tough gal in jeans and jackets who talks of a rough life. He is worried about her behavior and follows her one night, finding her entering a huge mansion. Billy races in, assuming Zoe is planning to rob the place and trying to get her out before the cops arrive. He stops when he sees a portrait on the wall of Zoe in a posh riding outfit and realizes this is her house. She explains that she puts on her street act because, at her old school, she was either an outcast due to her wealth or people just wanting to be friends with her because she was rich. She thus took advantage of being transferred for a fresh start.
have the gang trying to help a seemingly middle-class guy get with his true love, due to marry a rich man. At first, they seem together until her mother threatens to cut her off and she dumps her love without a thought. Harry tries to get through by pointing out how much the man loves her but she ignores him…at which point, the guy reveals hes even
: I wanted to see if she loved me for myself or my money.
: Sure, long as you dont cheat, well be okay.
They kiss and embrace as the gang walk off in disgust. All except Dan, who cries what they have…is so beautiful!
; in the former, a millionaire moves into an impoverished community for a week to do volunteer work and find someone to give a large sum of money to as a reward for their good deeds or to help end a string of bad luck; in the latter, a high-ranking member of a company gets themselves hired incognito as a low-ranking member of their own organization to investigate life on the ground floor (the latter might not actually be all that wealthy, but they are always wealthi
, and more powerful, than they are letting on).
is revealed to be this in season 4 after theBig Badsteals $117 million from their bank vault. They werent necessarily hiding it from the heroes, it just never really came up, and
dont make it a habit to talk about their personal lives.
temporarily struck it rich after his first novel (published under a pseudonym) became a smash hit. He kept this from his colleagues for a while out of embarrassment, not because he was ashamed of his new-found wealth, but because telling them would entail admitting hed written the book, whose characters bore an all-too-suspicious (and not always complimentary) resemblance to his fellow agents.
Abbis purse is stolen by a runaway teen boy. A chase ensues and leads Abbi and Ilana to his home, a large and lavishly decorated townhouse he lives in with his mother. They overhear an argument between him and his mother revealing hes actually a grad school dropout.
, Shin got five female housemates imposed upon him by someone who invited to come and live with him. As an incentive to have Shin go along with it, the inviter also asked the housemates to pay Shin one million yen (the Japanese equivalent of ten thousand dollars) of rent per month. At the beginning of the series, all five of the women have been living with Shin for six months and paying the money from their own pocket. In such a situation, they inevitably all turn out to be this to a degree.
when he confides in Sophie that I won the lottery when Maggie [hisdeeply missed ex-wife] left me… which is then strung out into anOverly Long Gagas Sophie insists on assuming hes talking metaphorically. He later finds out that Maggie and her new man have known the whole time after she long ago read a letter addressed to Lance all the excuses to keep him around doing little jobs for her, which he assumed were signs of lingering affection, were really because of the money.
, Midge meets Sophie Lennon, a hefty comedienne whose act centers on her working-class attitude as a housewife in Queens. When Midge goes to meet Sophie at her home, shes shocked to discover that Sophie is actually a slender, refined and fantastically rich woman who lives a comically snobby lifestyle in secret. She explains that her comedy persona would only work if the public doesnt know the truth about her, and her publicist works very hard to keep it that way. Midge notably decides to base her own act on her real life as a wealthy, Jewish socialite.
, Morn the barfly spends over ten years hiding 1,000 bricks worth of gold-pressed latinum in his second stomach.
comes off as a fairly typical slacker college student, until he brings Michael with him on a visit home and turns out to be from an exceedingly wealthy family. He doesnt think much of it, because its also a cold family.
: John B. McLemore lives like a pauper in rural Alabama, but is also known to make large purchases and never seems to worry about money. He occasionally makes oblique references to burying gold around his property and having to dig up some funds for an impending purchase. He made excellent money restoring old clocks, so its widely speculated that John might have lots of money, maybe even millions of dollars, stashed on his property in gold bars.
, while you get a few hints that Sherman Shellancer is a man of means,
a conversation between him and his fairy in the Vile God route of
after several members join your party reveals that if necessary, he could afford to pay for them to all stay at the inn for 285-410 days, and thats even factoring in for the rate at which theyve been growing.
Leisure Suit Larry 1: In the Land of the Lounge Lizards
has Larry lampshade this if the player has blown all of Larrys money and had the vagrant give Larry more money enough times. Larry addresses the absurdity of a derelict somehow being able to keep giving Larry money by asking him if hes secretly wealthy.
sNagito Komaedais revealed to be this in his Free Time Events. He won the lottery a few times due to his Ultimate Luck,
and, due to said luck working in cycles, his parents died when he was a child, and he inherited all of their money.
: When Blake shows Sun where her family home is, Sun is shocked to see its the largest residential building in the area. Its a huge, sprawling mansion with steps leading