In order to be able to listen to the samples you must install Flash Player 9 or newer version. Popular characters who appear in little more than a cameo on the inside can be larger than the main character on the cover. Film Posters and video packaging are particularly likely to mislead if it's an independent film, or a film in a genre that the marketing people assume most people are unlikely to appreciate.
In non-graphic literature, it is not uncommon for a female character to be portrayed in a Stripperiffic outfit when they would wear nothing of the sort in the story. This trope also applies to album covers, especially singles, which often get their own album art, for one or two songs.
A related subtrope is the practice of creating the cover first, and writing the story based on that. This has occasionally gotten lampshade hung on it, as evidenced here◊, here and here.
Many of these overlap with Sexy Packaging and Contemptible Cover, and often feature Lady Not-Appearing-in-This-Game. Polish and Czech film posters of well known Hollywood films tend to be so infamously abstract that they often bear no clear connection at all to the themes and content of the film in question because the designers usually have almost no idea what the films are about.
Due to Billing Displacement or Retroactive Recognition, well-known actors are often placed prominently on covers for films in which they have only small roles. The cover art for Tealove's Steamy Adventure was deliberately made to be sort of accurate, but in a misleading way. The fan fiction Mobile Fighter Evangelion was inspired by this occurrence: Word of God is that the author, when he was a kid, saw a poster of Neon Genesis Evangelion and assumed things about the Children (and the series as a whole) that was way different from the real thing. Things like recipe books and food packaging has plenty of examples of this, featuring pictures of food made by professionals, presented to be as photogenic and appetizing as possible. Posters and DVD covers will often feature one of valets (or Faux Action Girls) holding a prop that symbolically has something to do with the theme of the show, but is otherwise irrelevant; the woman in question is often barely in the show, if at all. The box for Space Crusade (HeroQuest set in the Warhammer 40,000 universe) depicts an elderly squad commander in entirely white armor with a gold emblem on his left shoulder plate. To be fair, he could be a Star Phantom (though they didn't exist in fluff until many years later), or a Marines Errant apothecary. The old boxed sets for the Basic version of the Dungeons & Dragons game invariably showed a party of heroes engaged in glorious battle with a dragon of some description.
Banner ads for Menage a 3 do a thorough job of explaining that the comic features a lot of sex based jokes.
The second Electric Wonderland comic has a cover page with Aerynn exclaiming, "I said I would shoot, but you didn't believe me! How I Became Yours not only has scenes that don't happen on the cover, but it also has several fabricated positive reviews.
Lampshaded during this review for Master of Magic one of the reviews states "I knew it was a total flop, one could tell that just by looking at the box". The autographed cast picture where everyone was in their costumes was the first spoiler for To Boldly Flee, and taking the cue from Kickassia and Suburban Knights, fans wondered how Doug was going to emote at all with a giant Judge Dredd helmet covering half his face. The Nostalgia Chick's "Top 10 'Hottest' Animated Guys" bumper art shows her surrounded by Megamind, Hades, Nightcrawler and the Beast, all dressed as Chippendales Dancers.

YouTube allows you to upload a photo of just about whatever you want if you decide not to use a still from the video for its thumbnail. The video thumbnail for Smosh Games Alliance's "SMOSH SQUAD TAKES OVER QUIPLASH LIVE (SGA Live)" shows Sohinki and Mari, but the two didn't make an appearance in the episode at all. Pinky and the Brain, mirroring the earlier Animaniacs, was spun off in its own comic book series. Another Excalibur issue had an incredibly boring cover that certainly didn't happen inside the comic, with a morose-looking little man sweeping the floor and telling us that the usual comic-book cover stuff - muscular heroes fighting dastardly villains, and girls with big tits - is actually inside the comic book, and we should stop bothering him. In a Superman comic where the cover says Lobo will make a one page cameo, Lobo responds by swearing at the fact he only gets one page. As seen on the page image for Wolverine Publicity, there existed an alternate cover for an Anita Blake comic Marvel was putting out at the time featuring Wolverine and Anita, with a small caption reading "Wolverine does not actually appear in this issue". This was fairly common in the late-nineties-early-2000s, making fun of earlier covers that played it straight. One of the most common fake-out covers is the image of all the heroes lying dead in a pile while the issue's villains stand triumphant.
This is played for laughs on the cover of the Impossible Man one-shot comic book, where the title character is sunning himself on a beach surrounded by practically every major Marvel hero buried up to their necks in the sand, with Impy making a threat to Doctor Doom (who's behind him) that implies he beat them up and did that because they were blocking his sun.
Cerebus did a parody of this phenomenon by introducing a character named Wolveroach, an obvious spoof of Wolverine.
The cover image for Tealove's Steamy Adventure was deliberately made to be technically accurate (if you tilt your head and squint) but completely misleading.
A spoof of this trope in Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey when the title characters find themselves in Hell used to provide the page quote. The cover of the similar horror spoof Shriek if You Know What I Did Last Friday the Thirteenth intentionally makes it seem like Tiffanni Thiesen plays the main character and the killer.
National Lampoon's Vacation has a cover that parodies Conan the Barbarian (1982), with the family patriarch presented as a Frank Frazetta beefcake who is stabbing the sky with a tennis racket and has leg clinging bimbos. Terry Pratchett's Only You Can Save Mankind parodies this wonderfully with the advertising material for the eponymous game: "Actual games shots taken from a version you haven't bought".
You might also want to listen to the band playing their own music.  Consider the covers your gateway songs to the band at a minimum. A quiet, contemplative issue can be made to seem like an action-packed frag-fest, and vice-versa. For example, an intelligently-written mystery for the whole family may have a cover that implies it's a comedy, or a family film that happens to have a dog in it may emphasize the dog on the cover. Also, virtually any Speculative Fiction book will have either a rocket or an alien of some sort on the cover, and dragons are commonly used on Fantasy, High Fantasy and Sword & Sorcery books, even if there is no dragon in the story at all. This was common practice for comic books, especially at DC, during The Silver Age of Comic Books under editor Julius Schwartz, and was responsible for some of the weirdest stories of the time.
Compare with Never Trust a Trailer, Wolverine Publicity, Bait-and-Switch Credits and Super Dickery, and enjoy this i09 gallery. For instance, a cave troll features in the story, while the cover includes Nepeta, who is a troll girl who lives in a cave, but otherwise has absolutely nothing to do with the story. Even if a male wrestler's image is used, he might be shown wearing a silly themed costume (suggesting that the show will be laugh-a-minute) or depicted with inappropriate iconography.

Not only does this character not exist in the game, the color scheme and emblem are not used by any chapter of the Legions Astartes.
The Basic D&D rules only provided information for advancement up to 3rd level, meaning that if your Basic-level adventurer met up with a dragon of any sort, the resulting Curb-Stomp Battle would wipe you out within a round or two. While those are all characters she admits to liking, the actual list was constructed from a poll of her female viewers, and all but one of those characters (the Beast) failed to place. While the covers of both titles rarely showed scenes or concepts from the stories inside, the first Pinky and the Brain cover was notable for following the guidelines at the top of this page explicitly, with the Brain pronouncing 'This is the way to make it big in the comic business!'. The cover prominently displays our web-headed hero, who brags about how he's taking over this comic book, even though he already has four series of his own.
Ads!" A gritty War Is Hell picture devoid of female characters except for a scene where "for two seconds, a girl jumps out and kisses a soldier" is advertised as a torrid love story, with the woman's face and ballooning bust plastered all over the advertisement. There's nothing like this inside he comic, but given the humor-themed stories that are, it was clearly meant as a joke. One particular issue had Punisher, Wolverine, and Spider-Man featured prominently on the cover, while She-Hulk tells the readers that they only appear on the book, not in it. The cover has the X-Men, but the bottom left-hand corner has a caption saying The X-Men in the New Universe?
So it makes sense that music fans would want to decorate their skin with lyrics to their best-loved songs — or the art from their favorite album. However, it would sometimes result in a story that went off in a totally different direction and disposed of the cover situation in a panel or two.
For magazines that sometimes put a bit of skin on their cover even though the interior is about gaming, sports, or whatever, see Fanservice Cover. Similarly, the cover of the "sequel", Diamond and Silver's Excellent Adventure contains nothing that actually appears in the story other than the two eponymous protagonists and implications of time travel. Famously, the poster for No Mercy in October 2007 showed Randy Orton holding a white dove on the cover, implying that he was about to turn face. None of the members of Excalibur themselves are depicted except for Captain Britain, who is shoved into the background. An ad for an adventure movie depicts scenes taking place in different parts of the world edited together, with quotes from critics' negative reviews just as misleadingly spliced.
The cover pic features Nepeta from Homestuck, who is also a troll and lives in a cave, but is otherwise nothing like the cave troll from the story. After the jump, we round up 20 fantastic tattoos inspired by equally wonderful album covers, from Bob Dylan and The Smiths to PJ Harvey and Kanye West. This is often done intentionally so customers will purchase the product assuming that it relates to their interests in a visual version of Follow the Leader.

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