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Alice (or sometimes Bob) is trying a bit too hard to make herself look good at the expense of other women (and maybe men), claiming superiority on the ground that she doesn't have as much sex as they do, doesn't dress as sexily as they do, or something like that. Accusing other women (or sometimes men) of being "skanks", "sluts", "cheap" and whatnot.

Often a tragic character portrayed as being overly prudish as a kind of Sour Grapes: "I deny myself my sexuality, so why don't these people do the same thing?". Thus "Sour Prudes". For extra irony, Alice might be pulling the Entitled to Have You card, based on being such a good girl. This can be especially tragic if she lives in a society where women are economically dependent on men, making her come across as justified -- or at least as a Troubled Sympathetic Bigot who is only trying to survive in No Woman's Land. In some cases, this might go hand in hand with Marital Rape License. For example, let's say that Alice is outraged at Charlene for saying that oral sex is okay -- and that the real reason for this outrage is that Alice fears that Charlene's opinion may encourage Alice's husband Bob to try to pressure Alice into having oral sex.

If this Alice has taken a vow of chastity (and she usually hasn't), she might also be a Strawman Political of the conservative kind. Note that a character who chose to be chaste -- without being a Jerkass about it -- is not this trope. If a character is accused of being this trope by another character, without being portrayed as such by the narrative, it counts as "invoked" and does not go on character sheet pages.

Compare My Girl Is Not a Slut, Internalized Sexism, Lie Back and Think of England, Heteronormative Crusader and Sex Is Evil and I Am Horny. Contrast Ethical Slut, For Happiness and Safe, Sane, and Consensual.

Examples of Sour Prudes include:

Anime and Manga

Comic Books

  • Bitchy Bitch invoke this quite often. Her accusations is never portrayed as justified. Unlike her lesbian counterpart, she is not portrayed as being a prude herself.
  • Bitchy Butch never seem to quit whining about supposedly prudish women, mostly because she's frustrated that they won't leave their boyfriends and start having sex with her instead. Ironically, it's hinted that Butchy herself has been quite the Sour Prudes to her previous girlfriends (only hinted, since the stories are all told from her biased perspective where everything was always their fault and never hers) .
  • Whatever Love Means portrays this mindset as an effect of patriarchal repression: Everyone want to have some control, and having been denied any other way to power a woman's only remaining option is trying to control her own sexuality and the sexuality of others. Also, women who are not sexually repressed becomes a very real threat when your sexuality is the only thing you have to bargain with: Like any other market, it's a matter of supply and demand, and minimizing supply is their only way of increasing her market value.
  • The Piranha Club has a male example with the protagonist Ernie Floyd trying a bit too hard to convince his girlfriend's father that he doesn't pose a threat to the old man's daughter.


  • In Easy A, the main antagonists have this mindset and bring it down hard on our poor protagonist.
  • In The Fast and the Furious, Dom's girlfriend Letty chases off two girls hitting on Dom at the first race.

  Letty: I smell [sniffs] skanks. Why don't you ladies pack it up before I leave tread marks on you faces?

    • Bonus points for not looking very wholesome herself. Being a story focused on Bromance, this scene mostly serve to establish women as something annoying in the background.
  • In Attenberg, it is established that Bella is more sexually experienced and that Marina feels inadequate. And then hardly a conversation goes by without Marina calling Bella "whore", "stupid", or (depending on translation) either "wild animal" or "predator".
    • Of course, this doesn't stop Marina from using Bella for advice, kissing practice, and even lending her out to her dying father (who had *not* asked his daughter to provide him with women) for a one-night stand.
  • In Stagecoach, the women who hate Dallas are given no characterization or social context beyond being hateful out of pure prudishness. No hint of them feeling fear or humiliation that their husbands may be unfaithful to them and that they are at too much of a social disadvantage to dare blaming it on them.


  • A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is pretty heavy on the "women treat each other worse than men treat women" idea, with the obvious example being the neighborhood women who harass and eventually stone a girl who has a baby out of wedlock. The narration explains how miserable these women's marriages are.

Live Action TV

  • Both Ziva and Kate could be prudish toward Tony in NCIS (not that it's all that hard to be prudish toward Tony).
    • Caitlin Todd was somewhat prudish towards him, despite a wild past, but Ziva David averts this trope on a regular basis. She's not a prude to him, she's just not sailing on that particular ship, so far as I know.
  • Angela in The Office. She also had an affair with Dwight while engaged to Andy, making her a full-fledged Straw Hypocrite
  • Chance from Noah's Arc has moments of this, often to Eddie's dismay.

Web Comics

  • In Sabrina Online, Zig-Zag sometimes (jokingly, one should hope) calls Sabrina a prude because she refuses to become a porn star and because she can sometimes get embarrassed.

Western Animation

  • Inverted in one episode of Family Guy, where Lois moralizes over teenage abstinence. Her argument is not that teenagers should be empowered to make their own choices. Instead, she preaches that abstaining from sex is "just wrong". In other words, the show inverts the "Sex Is Evil" stance for laughs. The inversion is not of the "Sex Is Good" kind, but rather "Not-having-sex Is Evil".
    • The show as such wasn't criticizing abstinence, it was criticizing abstinence-only education that uses scare tactics. At the end of the show, Lois did give a nice speech where she told the students that they shouldn't have sex until they're ready. And if/when they do, to please 'use a condom'.
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