Trope Talk: Fates Worse Than Death

26 mar. 2021
572 828 Vizionare

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Today let's talk about everyone's favorite Stock Nightmare Fuel trope - and no, I wasn't expecting to use so many DCAU examples either! You know, for a colorful kid's cartoon, those bad guys sure end up in their own personal hells a lot.
This extremely cheerful topic was requested by patron Glen Taylor! Thanks, I think.
"Scheming Weasel" Kevin MacLeod (
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  • Hiriko Araki: 👁👁

    CherubCherubAcum o Zi
  • Pokey Minch

    SpencerSpencerAcum o Zi
  • Me listening to this: Mind Manipulation- Check Possible Torture- Check Irreversible Body Morph- Check Psychological Torture- Check MCU Loki and Bucky- Check Edit: OMG she used the bucky example!

    Lokitty1209Lokitty1209Acum o Zi
  • Red, I think you're kind of underselling the vital component of a fate worse than death in fiction, the essense of having an unhealable wound. The real worse fate than death is mainly the fact that death is the only thing that could end the impact of an event. PTSD, emotional damage, trauma, and the mere fact that you'll never be the same person you were before whatever scarring thing happened, that is the awful fate because it brings us in direct RAW contact with the fact that the world is fundementally broken. Existentially, the fate worse than death is having to live life with XYZ having happened to you. I think the examples you chose were a bit more on the comic side, and don't really get at the horror that is being conveyed. The emotional fears of having been no one important, or having to betray morals, these are what are actually impactful and horrifying, not really whatever medium this is portrayed through. Being frozen in ice is not what hurts, being ALONE is what hurts, or being unable to interact with the world. This the fate, the frozen in ice thing is just the plot medium to bring about that charcater distress. I think you're mistaking plot device for the actual trope, when really, the author picks this trope for a specific emotional wound, (at least if they are doing a good job) sorry if this was a bit of a ramble, I've enjoyed the work you've done on other videos and was just a little dissapointed after watching this one as it seemed a bit trite and surface level.

    A. ForgetA. ForgetAcum 2 Zile
  • It was both the catalyst for him deciding to be a good person instead and left him with crippling bibliophobia.

    Cody HinesCody HinesAcum 3 Zile
  • I just realized that the Stargate franchise regularly dealt with the "you wouldn't ACTUALLY blow up the world" problem by repeatedly showing us ways that the story could continue if they did in fact blow up the world. The episodes where they actually start sending people to the Beta site are a good example, but there's also the many, many alternate reality episodes where they see a version of Earth that has lost big in some way but is still fighting. The reaction is always "Oh my God, that is HORRIBLE, I'm so glad we don't have to deal with that version of things." But I never considered it as a way of the writers saying, "See? We really could blow up the planet! FEAR US, FOR NOTHING IS BEYOND OUR POWER!"

    Oberon4278Oberon4278Acum 3 Zile
  • Honestly, identity death is one of my personal obscure phobias. Basically any scenario where your brain or soul or whatever is just... deleted. Your body is still there but it's just a flesh vessel to be used by something else. You're just gone, and all that remains is this cheap puppet of what you used to be. I dislike the porn of this.

    Theo the DergTheo the DergAcum 3 Zile
  • This made me realize that almost everyone in hollow knight is experiencing the far end of the spectrum of fate worse then death and that is terrifying to think about

    Seal BringerSeal BringerAcum 3 Zile
  • the truely worse fate than death: being expelled from Hogwarts

    Nam NgôNam NgôAcum 3 Zile
  • Every time i think of this i think of the iron guy from game of thrones, becoming a pain puppet forever would definitely be worse than death

    Cameron JordanCameron JordanAcum 4 Zile
  • Jesus loves you

    free headdfree headdAcum 4 Zile
  • this video for some reasons explains jjba in some areas in great detail, like the whole different protagonist and spin offs, ex: part 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, etc. ex2: thus spoke kishibe rohan, purple haze feedback. And this is not all, other stuff like infinite time loop and so on and so on.

    Spider LuciferSpider LuciferAcum 4 Zile
  • Two of my favorite examples of this are diavolo from jojo and chisaki from my hero

    the Piganaitorthe PiganaitorAcum 4 Zile
  • I can't imagine it would be very fun for a human to spontaneously experience the entire history of the multiverse in a single instant and forced to somehow process all of it with time being unable to pass until they have.

    angeldude101angeldude101Acum 5 Zile
  • Sometimes a fate worse than death is also a tool a writer can use to get back at a shows producer for banning death as a viable option. "What do you mean the Joker isn't allowed to kill anyone? Well, he won't be killing anyone, but you'll wish that he had!"

    Pauciloquent FlibbertigibbetPauciloquent FlibbertigibbetAcum 5 Zile
  • "Some sexy scars" Me who wrote my main character throw two weeks of horror, just so she can have cette scars and a excuse for being irrational and mentally strange: 😁

    Artemis NightflameArtemis NightflameAcum 5 Zile
  • “If you kill off the hero what will you do for the next season? Try and sell us on a new protagonist?” JoJo: Yes.

    SpraghootSpraghootAcum 6 Zile
  • Not getting more videos on Journey to the West is a fate worse than death.

    Renato CorvaroRenato CorvaroAcum 6 Zile
  • Me: *Planning to kill off the heart, the replacement lancer/romance interest for side character, and the main love interest by the end of all the books* Also me: *Laughs in readers face*

    Zachary SalasZachary SalasAcum 7 Zile
  • Worm refrigerator scene. That's all I have to say.

    Fireice2929Fireice2929Acum 7 Zile
  • I’m surprise red never brought up situations like the dementors from Harry Potter. Since they have the ability to rip someone’s soul out of their body. so the person isn’t dead dead they just kind of empty for the rest of their life, wondering the world without a soul . j.k.Rowling said that this is “a fate worse than death”.

    My NikkiMy NikkiAcum 8 Zile
  • Can you do a video on Well-Intentioned Extremists?

    Nia Abejero - Mc ConnellNia Abejero - Mc ConnellAcum 8 Zile
  • One thing I never got used to was how the heroes would sometimes seal the villain away. To me that was a bad idea yes the bad guy can be very very powerful but most seals tend to break too easily

    maverick803maverick803Acum 8 Zile
  • :3 The "KID-FRIENDLY: An eternity of suffering awaits you!" illustration is beautiful ~

    William MilhansWilliam MilhansAcum 8 Zile
  • as soon as i heard red speak of body horror my first thought was about the made in abyss cast

    Yūi O'NeilYūi O'NeilAcum 9 Zile
  • Faith worst than death in Dark Fantasy for Grown ups can be more graphic and traumatized to read or watch. For example: Like Goblin Slayer: Berserk, I haven't seen much of Berserk than Goblin slayer. This happens a lot of in fantasy for grown up audiences. People don't whine about death but they do whine up faith worst than death when it comes to story that are for grown ups. If haven't see Goblin Slayer, goblins are all males in the series, they are foul monsters that kidnapped woman and you can guess what will come next, that is a common thing in faith worst in death when it comes to novels for grown ups. It doesn't bother me when it happens in fiction I like grim stuff and if I get better at writing and get started. I will write faith worst than death into my novels for grown ups.

    The Gremlin DukeThe Gremlin DukeAcum 9 Zile
  • Kinda disappointed the duel to the marr from the princess bride wasn't brought up

    Josiah AutryJosiah AutryAcum 9 Zile
  • Wait... my precious shadow realm was just a censor? 🥲

    Dead Ringer -Cult of DeathrattlesDead Ringer -Cult of DeathrattlesAcum 9 Zile
  • Spoilers for Higurashi: When They Cry (2006&2020 anime, at least) Rika’s “fate worse than death” via reliving the summer of 1983 is already horrible enough, as she lives through a century’s worth of being horrifically murdered at the end of each two-week time span, never retaining the knowledge of her killer when she is reincarnated (at least until the later arcs). It’s made even worse in Hou/2020 anime, as now Hanyū is gone and her best friend is now a looper as well, deciding that she’s going to torture Rika through infinite loops until she gives up on her dream of leaving the village and moving on with her life Shit sucks, man.

    Zach SZach SAcum 10 Zile
  • I'm a bad person. I saw Body Horror on the scale and said, out loud: 'Eddd Wooooddddd'

    Mach1048Mach1048Acum 11 Zile
  • Red's unnamed hometown "Oh... oh I see how it is..."

    Jo RobearJo RobearAcum 11 Zile
  • Yo Angelo.

    SSSSSSAcum 11 Zile
  • Loving the Batman Beyond references

    Embersof AmberEmbersof AmberAcum 11 Zile
  • "He's got no mouth, and you better believe he's gotta scream" sent me

    Marina AtkinMarina AtkinAcum 11 Zile
  • Red: The body horror "fate worse than death zone" Me: flashbacks to jujutsu kaisen Me: 🥲 too soon. too soon.

    Jasmine NinjaJasmine NinjaAcum 11 Zile

    AramKaizerAramKaizerAcum 11 Zile
  • I’m pretty sure the ending to Barbie’s 12 Dancing Princesses forced the villains to keep dancing forever and if that’s not worse than death idk what is.

    Veronica HolmeVeronica HolmeAcum 12 Zile
  • Yay Yu-Gi-Oh. The 2nd season actually terrified me as a kid. Mostly cause the bit with Mai being trapped in an hour glass while the people who care about her appear to have forgotten her completely. That was a fucking nope.

    NightRocker13NightRocker13Acum 12 Zile
  • Shou Tucker is the best unmentioned fate worse than death

    Matthew OswaldMatthew OswaldAcum 12 Zile
  • A fate worst then death sounds like a snap of the fingers

    Brigadier CouchBrigadier CouchAcum 12 Zile
  • AoT is an entire series of "A fate worse than death"

    Khai RoseKhai RoseAcum 12 Zile
  • So Whatever happens to a jojo's villain, got it

    Warf, Local TrashWarf, Local TrashAcum 13 Zile
  • Considering Red's loyalty to "my man, Thor", I was waiting for a reference, at least a screencap, of Loki's final punishment in 'Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes'. Fits under the 'immortal gets tortured for an indeterminately horrible length of time' category.

    Justin J. SmileyJustin J. SmileyAcum 13 Zile
  • Unpopular opinion: Avengers Endgame should have ended with a Thanos win to make room for the next wave of marvel heroes instead of just having the extablished ones inexplicably not show up to deal with things they would have normally, but would get in the way of the "new talent" so they can't show up for plot.

    SteelSteelAcum 13 Zile
  • coincidentally my one of my MC's suffers a fate worse than death at the end of the book. Fun stuff.

    Eliyah SEliyah SAcum 13 Zile
  • what about the amorphous blob fate, except the character doesn't get taken out of the picture and instead keeps awareness and gets used (against their will) for someone else's goals? would that be a fate worse than death that isn't death with extra steps? consequently, would this scenario not give extra credibility to even higher stakes as the now-blob character serves as a constant reminder of bad shit?

    quincy wijnhardquincy wijnhardAcum 13 Zile
  • The ultimate fate without death: Eternity without entertainment.

    James SavantJames SavantAcum 13 Zile
  • Both _Preacher_ and _Lucifer_ (the shows, not the comics) featured timeloops as their versions of Hell: specifically, reliving your worst moment in life over and over again. I dunno why, but I find it interesting that both shows would choose that as their ultimate idea of torment.

    Sept77Sept77Acum 14 Zile
  • I remember that story you referenced that has the guy who gets stuck being immortal as a statue or something like that. I feel like I probably read it in middle school and remember finding it particularly unsettling to me. It was probably the claustrophobia and not being able to breathe aspects of it. I can't remember what the heck the story was called, though. You mentioning it just dinged a memory for me, though. I haven't thought about that story I can't remember the name of in years, but I remember that ending.

    MoonstonePearl21MoonstonePearl21Acum 14 Zile
  • A lot of fate worse than death scenarios I've seen tend to be extremely disturbing.

    MoonstonePearl21MoonstonePearl21Acum 14 Zile
  • little devastated we didn't get a clip of hermione's "or worse expelled" moment. and one other example of this trope is the doctor who two-parter human nature / family of blood where the doctor punishes aliens who had been immorally seeking immortality by imprisoning them in specific timeless prisons, which is a be careful what you wished for situation. It's particularly creepy because the doctor is supposed to be a pacifist, but we've learnt that he can be furiously powerful too.

    CaitlinCaitlinAcum 14 Zile
  • It’s so interesting to see how the different versions of Yugioh handles this trope. In the original manga there was death and just straight up mental insanity. Japanese version of the anime Anime had death as a consequence and mental torture. And the 4Kids version had the mentioned realm of eternal suffering.

    sanddrysanddryAcum 15 Zile
  • Perame en ese si estamos de acuerdo, libertad y las infinitas posibilidades de existencia, libre albedrio o libre elección, junto con dimensión 10 o más allá de las 10 dimensiones, dimensión 11 y más allá, digo no es como se pares a a udo en xenosaga y xenogears, junto xenoblade chronicles sagas pff o la teoría de cuerdas, los 9 tipos de universo y otros de ciencia real pff no, además por que razón se permite existir y desidir en primer Lugar? Que propósito tiene sino solo existir y ya lo demás parece subjetividad y objetividad colisionan do, sugerencia buen video y ya mejoró mucho tu canal junto red blue.

    Al ToAl ToAcum 15 Zile
  • This reminds me of the Malazan books where dying once is considered to be on the "lucky" side because a not small amount of characters died more than once or got "thousands of years of torture" or something else.

    Revan JiRevan JiAcum 15 Zile
  • My favorite fate worse than death: in Justice League, Morgan le Fay's kid Mordred is immortally young. He gets tired of being told what to do for thousands of years and does what any bratty kid would do: banishes all the adults to another dimension, so the kids can all have fun. Batkid makes fun of him for being a baby, and Mordred transforms himself into a man, thereby breaking his eternal youth spell - but not his immortality spell. He spends the rest of his life tended to by his mom as an ancient drooling man, incable of moving. Way to get out of being constantly controlled by your mama, dude.

    Holly JHolly JAcum 15 Zile
  • "So you will do nothing? Apathy is death, worse than death, because at least a rotating corpse feeds the beasts and insects."

    Lucas WingellLucas WingellAcum 15 Zile
  • You better bring up reek or I swear to god

    Henny DaWillowHenny DaWillowAcum 15 Zile
  • Virgin: Fate Worse than Death Chad: You Cannot Kill Me in a Way that Matters

    Katey ArntKatey ArntAcum 16 Zile
  • Two examples of how LITTLE it matters from two recent games. One character in Monster Hunter Stories has his mother tragically killed by a monster. And his mother is LITERALLY NEVER SEEN. He just looks at the house, yells "MOM!" And the house is crushed, and it's made clear "Yup. HIs mom was in there." Like, it migth even bet he first mention of him HAVING a mom. She could be replaced with "Yu-Gi-Oh cards" and it's not different. IN Dragon Quest XI, the main hero's village is destroyed to motivate him...and it's later revealed NOBODY DIED. They end up moving back later.

    Mitchell AndersonMitchell AndersonAcum 16 Zile
  • Immortal Infini-Death probably also covers the 'Eternity in hell" thing. (IE Shadow Realm.) It's that, crossed with Pain Zone. Eterntal pain...but they COULD get out of it...maybe.

    Mitchell AndersonMitchell AndersonAcum 16 Zile
  • Would a story work if the main hero dies at the climax without heavy or any foreshadowing and the resolution of the story is just showing how the other character cope and move on?

    meme machinememe machineAcum 16 Zile
  • I kinda want to see a novel that is 100% decided by a D20

    ShadowmarkReturnsShadowmarkReturnsAcum 16 Zile
  • Tbh as much as i love Avatar, i think Legend of Korra pulled off this trope beautifully in seasons 3 and 4.

    meegle.teedlemeegle.teedleAcum 16 Zile
  • This is,, this is the Magnus Archives

    ZestyZestyAcum 17 Zile
  • What about Aang taking away Ozai's bending? Its a fate worse than death that served the plot

    Vincent IannicelliVincent IannicelliAcum 17 Zile
  • Avatar Fates worse than death: Zuko's scar, loss of bending, There is no war in Ba Sing Se, and many more. Star Wars: Vader in general.

    Helen MersekHelen MersekAcum 17 Zile
  • Imagine getting the episode descriptions that straight up say the m/c dies in the finale. Then prior episode hint a really painful death. That's when all hope is lost?

    NearNearAcum 18 Zile
  • Fates worse than death: Being turned into a human walrus.

    Jimmy McDonald's UniverseJimmy McDonald's UniverseAcum 18 Zile
  • Can we have some good stories where either we have a MC actually die, experience a PERMANENT fate worse than death that's irreparable, or have a bad guy win?

    básmbeebásmbeeAcum 18 Zile
  • body horror? mutations? wait... like in made in abyss?

    benjamin reedbenjamin reedAcum 18 Zile
  • Leverage

    LykosLykosAcum 18 Zile
  • This is...Requiem. What you are seeing is indeed the truth. You are seeing the movements created by your abilities, but you will never arrive at the truth thats gonna happen. None who stand before me shall ever get there, regardless of their abilities, this is the power of Gold Experience Requiem, this is even unknown to Giorno Giovanna, who controls me. (BTW, if you don't know, this character puts the villain in an infinite death, where he dies, but then wakes up, and dies again in a different way. Forever.

    Haunted_SyrupHaunted_SyrupAcum 18 Zile
  • I want to talk about Flowie from Undertale, but spoilers. It occurs to me that the very high mortality rate of transgender people at their own hands is strong indicator that living as the wrong gender is a fate worse than death. It tends to give the people who survive a tragic backstory, too.

    JMP4itJMP4itAcum 18 Zile
  • good

    Vera ChoiVera ChoiAcum 19 Zile
  • Considering a lot of anime is meant for children there sure are a lot of fates worst than death

    it's a secretit's a secretAcum 19 Zile
  • "...but there is always the risk of the main character dying in a heroic sacrifice." *Goku's 38th death be like*

    RacoonRacoonAcum 20 Zile
  • Surprised bootstrap bill from pirates of the Caribbean wasn’t mentioned.

    DriftingsiaxDriftingsiaxAcum 20 Zile

    Eliot FlemingEliot FlemingAcum 20 Zile
  • i got a headache googling i have no mouth and i must scream...

    spacemanspacemanAcum 20 Zile
  • "Frozen as an immobilized statue, still capable of thinking and feeling as they witnessed eternity roll by" Christing hell...

    The Real Red RabbitThe Real Red RabbitAcum 20 Zile
  • best youtube channel btw

    Shoaib AlamShoaib AlamAcum 20 Zile
  • 3:04 fates worse than dying Diavolo: yes but no

    Udai VirUdai VirAcum 21 o Zi
  • i know of a certain guy of a certain game that was strapped onto a certain chair for a few thousands of years stuck listening to a certain rag song on a certain gramophone

    Octavio LópezOctavio LópezAcum 21 o Zi
  • 2:07 Jojo fans are sweating heavily

    Hunter SparkaHunter SparkaAcum 21 o Zi
  • I know this isn’t the point, but I usually leave these videos feeling afraid to use these tropes at all. Some examples of when this trope was effective and actually added to the story would be really nice.

    IzstrellaIzstrellaAcum 21 o Zi
  • How about you follow up with a video on 'Cool and Unusual Punishment'?

    Quinton ThornesQuinton ThornesAcum 21 o Zi
  • If death seems like an inadequate punishment for a villain's *really bad* crimes and a FWTD is called for, it seems like a narrative opportunity. The villain dies, and the protagonists are forced to realize that their justice/vengeance may have ended the threat, but not given them peace or closure.

    JohnalogueJohnalogueAcum 21 o Zi
  • "Most writers won't actually blow up the world" *Flashbacks to The Magnus Archives*

    Fire TarrasqueFire TarrasqueAcum 21 o Zi
  • Life is a fate worse than death.

    Build_n_stackBuild_n_stackAcum 22 Zile
  • Ironically, even though Supernatural is known for killing the characters over and over, I think the show also does a LOT of ‘fate worse than death” stuff (even if the fate is death)

    Emily LeceaEmily LeceaAcum 22 Zile
  • On the body horror example would be Nina from Fullmetal Alchemist

    lpezlpezAcum 22 Zile
  • So I have a campaign that ended in the actual end of the world in a DND type roleplay. The BBEG won and due to the way the world works the protagonists got a second chance a few thousand years later. Well the party's adopted NPC (A Kobold who took an interest in a especially shiny rapier that one of the party members had.) was actually a high enough level to resist the BBEG's soul consuming attack, and was the only character to roll high enough to survive. So the BBEG took interest in the little creature that managed to fight him despite the ones sent by his rival dying instantly. And decided to use her as the "artifact" that summoned him back to the world. This made her immortal, and so she had to walk through an empty world for over 1000 years before Astral (The main good guy) came back. Needless to say, the party took the quest to defeat the BBEG a little more seriously after hearing about her walking through streets full of bodies, trying to wake up her friends, trying to commit suicide but not being able to while still feeling the pain of each attempt. I felt bad for doing it to that character, but the party were literally murdering or destroying *all* of their leads.

    Dean HouseDean HouseAcum 22 Zile
  • Mmmm stakes.

    joe ligmajoe ligmaAcum 22 Zile
  • Honestly, fits any of the Sith pretty well, ESPECIALLY Vader and Maul. Both become so broken and tormented that they secretly wish to just die and be free from their pain.

    MisterTwisterMisterTwisterAcum 22 Zile
  • 0:00 to 0:04, so campfire blaze is death? BOI IMMA GONNA CHECK IT OUT!

    Checkmate DinoCheckmate DinoAcum 22 Zile
  • is this video a jojo reference?

    OliAnimsOliAnimsAcum 22 Zile
  • Fates worse than death, specifically the permanent kind where it changes and deforms who you are in a way that you become a husk of yourself which is then the most deadly thing to your loved ones while you can see to an extent what's happening. I've been mortally sick and terrified of that all my life, I would choke up and get stomach aches because the thought of it was so awful. It's way more scary than dying, and if gives more emotion in my opinion in stories

    Blossomness StudiosBlossomness StudiosAcum 22 Zile
  • MASSIVE AKAME GA KILL SPOILERS When you mentioned the protagonist dying, I would say Akame ga Kill is a good example of it. Tatsumi dying was unexpected at first. Once he gets ALMOST executed, it feels like your good ol' fake-out. It was. But that anime was so sad. Every time someone on the team died, I had tears running down my face.

    SaveTheAmazingCakesSaveTheAmazingCakesAcum 22 Zile
    • @hunter of strength oh cool! I've recently started the manga, and now I can mentally prepare for that

      SaveTheAmazingCakesSaveTheAmazingCakesAcum 21 o Zi
    • I'm pretty sure that's the reason *why* people hated it, that's reverse plot armour and it sucks just as much as the ladder if not done right. Also Tatsumi actual lives in the manga along with, Mine or whatever her name was.

      hunter of strengthhunter of strengthAcum 21 o Zi
  • >Fates Worse Than Death TAKE HIM TO DETROIT

    Bill WilsonBill WilsonAcum 22 Zile
  • Fate worse than death, The last DC animated movie. That is full of fates worse than death.

    Saint LucusSaint LucusAcum 22 Zile