Taking You with Me

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"From hell's heart, I stab at thee. For hate's sake, I spit my last breath at thee."
Captain Ahab, from Moby Dick [1]
"If I go down, I'm taking you with me!!"
Real Andross, from Star Fox 64

You're really in trouble now. You've been defeated, captured or otherwise humiliated by your enemies, and are now at their mercy. But you've got one last ace up your sleeve. The only problem is, this final attack is going to spell death for you as well as your enemies. But hey, you're going to die anyway! Might as well try to take some of them down with you.

Cue Earthshattering Kaboom via a Superpower Meltdown by using a Dangerous Forbidden Technique involving a Painful Transformation into a One-Winged Angel, or anything that suits your tastes, really. Don't forget, however, to growl in a menacing tone: "If I'm going to die, I'm Taking You With Me," or perhaps "See You in Hell."

When this trope is invoked, the hero usually survives, and the villain nearly always dies, regardless of who is trying to take who with them. If it's the villain trying to take the hero, the attempt inevitably fails. If it's the hero trying to take the villain, the attempt inevitably succeeds, and it's likely (but not certain) that the hero will find a way to come out of it alive. (Exception: If the hero is a redeemed bad guy, the attempt inevitably succeeds and kills both of them.)

One form of Taking You with Me is when a villain deliberately sets up a Load-Bearing Boss situation, hoping to collapse his lair on the victorious heroes (over cries of "You'll kill us both\all!"). When cornered, one might decide that it's Better to Die Than Be Killed, and take a Cyanide Pill; too bad that those don't bring down the opponent with you. If this action is taken by a usually stoic villain, may have been preceded by a Villainous Breakdown. If all of the universe/reality is included with "you", this becomes a Suicidal Cosmic Temper Tantrum.

A Last Stand is a prolonged version of this, involving more characters. It may, in fact, have several Taking You with Me incidents in it.

See also Sealed Evil in a Duel, Self-Destructive Charge, and Mutual Kill. The Double Knockout is a nonlethal cousin of this trope. May be the purpose of some variants of a Deadman's Switch. Compare Last Ditch Move for (not necessarily lethal or even offensive) scripted final actions. Contrast Villain's Dying Grace. Not to be confused with Taking Them Home With Me. It also should not be confused with Backstab Backfire, where the death of the person trying to do a last ditch effort in killing his enemy did not plan the possibility of death when attempting to backstab them after being defeated.

As a Death Trope, all Spoilers will be unmarked ahead. Beware.

Examples of Taking You with Me include:

Anime & Manga[edit | hide | hide all]

  • Done several times in Ginga: Nagareboshi Gin.
    • The Iga dogs seem somewhat fond of this: both Tsukikage and Hayato meet their makers this way.
    • Ben attempts to do this with Sniper. Both of them survive, though.
    • Benizakura kills Mosa in this fashion.
    • Akakabuto rises from the dead to take Gohei, Riki and Gin with him. Thanks to Gin, though, he doesn't succeed. At least not entirely, as he did manage to kill Riki.
    • In the wolf arc of the manga, Thunder Wolf manages to render Mukonga's front paws, his most effective weapons, useless. In response to this Mukonga tears his nonfunctional paw off and skewers Thunder Wolf with the bone of his leg before succumbing to his own wounds shortly after.
  • Sir Penwood from Hellsing was presented as being mostly an incompetent Modern Major-General at best. But then, after nearly being assualted by Millennium infiltrators, he reveals himself as a Cowardly Lion and offers to remain behind in the complex the SS Waffen vampires were bound to attack to give time for the rest of the staff to flee. Nobody takes him up on this offer; they all stay behind with him. After the attack has killed everybody, he waits until the vampires are too deep into the complex to escape, and pulls out a thin cylinder. He laughs at the enemy commander in his face...and reveals the stacks of C4 he'd wired into the building. He gets shot. Twice. And he still presses the detonator.
  • Hilda from Outlaw Star, upon realizing she's caught in a star's gravity pull and that there was no way her crew could save her, decides to go down like the badass she is, grabbing one of the Big Bad's Dragons with a metal clamp and blowing up the both of them with the explosive equivalent of a Cyanide Pill.
  • Jin from Samurai Champloo has a specific technique, handed down from his sensei, for taking down an opponent who completely outclasses him: he creates an intentional opening in his defense, and fatally strikes the opponent once he's fully committed to his attack. The technique generally leads to the death of both the user and the opponent, and Jin is lucky to make it out with only a grievous but non-fatal wound.
    • Likewise, after Mugen slays his brothers and fails to die to a gunshot, Toube waits until just before Mugen staggers to him before detonating a cache of explosives hidden in his wheelchair. Mugen survives this too, because he's pretty much invincible.
  • This occurs several times in Dragon Ball:
    • Tried (unsuccessfully) by Chiaotzu and Vegeta. In Vegeta's case, Buu simply regenerated himself, and Chiaotzu just wasn't strong enough to kill Nappa.
    • Ironically, the only time this worked was when one of the Saibamen, essentially cannon fodder, detonated itself to kill Yamcha.
    • Subverted with Frieza: At first, Goku (and the viewers) think that Frieza is attempting to blow up Namek and kill himself in the process just to destroy Goku in a last ditch effort, only to end up unable to use the full power of the attack. However, he reveals that he was actually intending to escape Namek's explosion and leave Goku to die on the planet, knowing full well that he can survive in space, unlike Goku.
  • Saint Seiya: In the first case, Ikki uses this to defeat Virgo Shaka, but Worthy Opponent Shaka is so impressed by his courage that with the help of Aries Mu, he brings Ikki back to the Sanctuary and does a Heel Face Turn. On the other hand, both Shiryu and Siegfried from the Asgard Saga try this on Capricorn Shura and Siren Sorrento, respectively, by holding them and ascending to space with them. The latter fails since Sorrento survives, and the former succeeds (but ultimately returns). Gemini Kanon takes it one step further on Wyrvern Radamantys by ascending to space AND using his Galaxian Explosion at the same time.
  • Sailor Moon: Sailor Jupiter does this near the end of the first season, electrocuting herself along with the DD Girl who captured her. Sailor Venus takes out another in a similar way, with a powerful kamikaze overload of her Crescent Beam attack, and Sailor Mars completely immolates the last with the remainder of her power. "Fire...SOUL!" They all got a Dying Moment of Awesome.
  • X 1999 has Karen Kasumi do this with a combination of this and a straightforward Heroic Sacrifice, complete with explosive Superpower Meltdown.

Aoki: "Maybe you're right. Yes, maybe the Earth should be destroyed. But even then, I will protect those that I love, and that's why I'll defeat you at the cost of my life!"

  • Speaking of Clamp, in Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle: Near the end of the Celes arc, Fai tries to kill Ashura and himself with an explosion of killer magic, but both survive (for the moment). (Of course, if you've read all of the Celes arc, then you see why Fai didn't just do it from a distance, so it's more of a Broken Character Wants To Die And Save His Friends via This Trope.)
  • My-HiME: The second-to-last episode has Natsuki sacrificing herself against her love-crazed best friend Shizuru by blasting Shizuru's CHILD (Kiyohime) while her own CHILD (Duran) is in Kiyohime's clutches, which destroys both CHILDs and kills them both. To further drive the point home, Natsuki tells Mai ahead of time that she knows she's not going to make it, and when she actually does so, hugs Shizuru for the first (and last) time as they both disappear, literally taking Shizuru with her (though they ultimately get better).
  • Hunter X Hunter: President Netero, nuking himself along with the Chimera Ant King in the manga.
  • Dewey from Eureka 7 has a dead mans switch embedded in his chest that will activate the necklaces that Anemone and Eureka wear to prevent them from becoming the next Coralian hive mind. Fortunately for them, it doesn't work too well, and they both survive, if in a very bad way immediately afterwards.
  • Zeta Gundam: Paptimus Scirocco does this, in a rare villainous example that works. When his mobile suit is impaled by the Zeta Gundam, he gets the lower half of his torso crushed by the Zeta itself. With his dying breath, he curses his killer, Kamille Bidan, and using his newtype abilities, mentally lobotomizes Kamille. His mobile suit then explodes, and Kamille is left blabbering like a five-year old. Lest I forget to mention, this is how the series ENDS. It takes Kamille almost the whole sequel, Gundam ZZ, to start getting better.
  • The Mariages of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS Sound Stage X will liquify its entire body into a combustible liquid that will turn the area they're in into a raging inferno in an attempt to incinerate their enemy together with them if they've been subdued and unable to retaliate in any other way.
  • Non-fatal version in Code Geass, where C.C. uses the Gawain, running low on power, to grapple Jeremiah and his Siegfried and forces both of them to the bottom of the ocean. Non-fatal since C.C. is immortal while Jeremiah, who was altered by Britannia in an attempt to recreate C.C., is insanely tough; both characters return for the second season.
    • In the same episode, Lelouch straps a liquid sakuradite to his chest and threatens Suzaku that if he shoots it, they, along with Kallen, will die. Suzaku manages to get it off him without it detonating.
    • In the second season, Lelouch goes into the Sword of Akasha after his father, then destroys the gateway from the inside, effectively trapping them forever. He even gets to say See You in Hell:

"Now, let us suffer together in this eternal repentance!"

    • Of course, considering Lelouch wasn't a code bearer and the emperor was, Lelouch would eventually die of thirst if things had gone according to plan. The Emperor wouldn't have been so fortunate.
    • Nevertheless, this didn't stop anyone from entering or leaving, so he had to kill him while in there.
  • In Digimon Adventure, Apocalimon was willing to kill himself and destroy everything in the process.
    • This trope was also evidenced during the final fight on Infinity Mountain, where Angemon fought Devimon.
    • In Digimon Xros Wars, Beelzebumon pulled this on Lillithmon.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's, after his defeat at Yusei's hands, Rudger detonates his robotic arm, destroying the bridge they were duelling on, and sending Yusei plummeting into the depths of Old Momentum. Sore loser.
    • The dub of course, HAS to change this as Rudger/Roman's arm detonation is technically suicide. It's changed so that Earthbound God Uru's destruction blows up the bridge.
    • This trope is also invoked during Jack's duel with D-Carly. Jack plans to activate a trap that will take them both down at once. This is however foiled by Carly, who manages to gain control of herself at the last minute and knocks her own life points down to zero in order to save Jack's life.
  • In Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles Alex Romero dies this way taking many of enemy fighters with him.
  • Macross Plus has Guld going up against the Ghost X-9 alone. Despite his Super Prototype Cool Plane, he's clearly outmatched... until he switches his plane to Heroic RROD and rams the sucker into the Ghost. In the OVAs, they both explode on impact; in the movie, Guld's fighter survives but he's plastered all over the cockpit due to G-forces.
  • In Deadman Wonderland, Nagi does this with Genkaku, holding him down so that Ganta can kill him. His words: "I'm your guide to hell." Genkaku really doesn't seem to mind, and appears pretty happy.
  • In the first season finale of Full Metal Panic!, Gauron attempts to do this to Sousuke while they're in their Humongous Mecha. He sets his AS to self destruct in 2 minutes, and pins Sousuke down. Right before the dramatic explosion, he takes the opportunity to confess his love for Sousuke, which sort of falls flat when Sousuke blasts him off the ship they're on so only Gauron's AS explodes. Of course, in season three, Gauron lives up to his legend of being impossible to kill by showing up alive again.
  • In the middle of the Konan/Kutou war in Fushigi Yuugi, Tamahome tells Miaka, "If I die, I'm taking them with me, but I won't let you die!"
    • Played tragically straight with Chiriko's death, a case in which the hero does take the villain with him at the cost of his own life.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist: Kimbley turns Al into a bomb shortly before he dies from the mortal wound Scar inflicted on him. Unfortunately for him, Scar manages to deactivate the bomb by giving Al his right arm, turning him into the new Philosopher's Stone and saving his life.
    • In the manga, Fu and Captain Buccaneer, who was the temporary leader of the Brigg's Fortress at the time, tried to sacrifice themselves to take down King Bradley before their deaths.

"Old Man, we'll walk him down the path to Hell together."
"Yes, thank you."

      • A particularly unique example, as Fu intended to blow up himself and Wrath, but Wrath just cut the fuses off the bombs strapped to his chest. Captain Buccaneer arrived to help avoid a Senseless Sacrifice.
  • In Inuyasha, Naraku orders Kanna to do this, after she sustains heavy damage from protecting her Mirror-Demon. Although Kanna fails to take anyone with her, in her final moments, she Heel Face Turns slightly, and manages to tell Kagome how to defeat Naraku. In the anime it is shown quite clearly that Kanna completely refuse to do this.
    • Naraku himself also tried this when his time came, to the point that he was willing to subject himself to a Fate Worse Than Death if that meant that the protagonist's girlfriend comes with him.
  • Darker than Black. Huang deliberately got into a car chase with Syndicate agents so he could lure them off and blow them up with a bomb he'd planted in his car. And November 11 took down his boss and an entire roomful of bodyguards (probably even more, since he made it out of the building before the bullet wound got to him). And he did it with a bottle of bourbon.
  • Either inverted or subverted in JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, depending on how you look at it. A dying Jonathan, the hero of the first arc, attempts to take Dio, the closest thing the series has to a central antagonist, with him. It does appear to be played somewhat straight for a while, until Dio returns in the third arc.
  • Johan of Monster, in a non-literal, very extreme variation of the trope. He knows he has to die, and he's going to take pretty much everyone with him.
  • In Naruto Shippuden Deidara fights Sasuke, and when he loses use of his legs and realizes his opponent can cancel out the effect of his Earth-based attack with lightning he opts to swallow the exploding clay and set it off inside himself (where it can't be rendered useless) so he wouldn't be taken alive. It didn't work.
    • Sasuke himself attempts this when the Raikage is about to crush him and he makes a fire shield, but Gaara stops them both.
    • Danzo attempts this on both Madara and Sasuke using a death-actived sealing techniques, but they both managed to avoid it. However, the threat of it did give him enough time to destroy the eyes of his which Madara was after.
    • In the original series, Zabuza also attempts this on Gato during the Land of Waves arc.
  • In Bleach, Yamamoto - the last captain standing - tries to do this to Aizen in an extreme example that would not only take out them, but EVERYONE ELSE in the area. Naturally, it fails, as Aizen made one of his minions specifically able to cancel that ability. Sort of justified, because as prideful as Aizen is, he even outright admits that Yamamoto would beat him in a fair fight.
  • Yusuke tries this a couple times in Yu Yu Hakusho, but it's subverted both times. His first usage of this is when he uses almost all of his life energy to kill Suzaku, and is revived by Kuwabara before the rest of his life fades away. The second time is in his fight against Jin, where Yusuke was about to fire a Spirit Gun into a point-blank Tornado Fist, which would have created a tornado of spirit energy that would kill both of them. Luckily, Jin noticed this and decided to dodge instead.
    • One fight later after the Yusuke/Jin battle the exact same thing happens: a heavily wounded and near exhausted Kuwabara attempts to do this while fighting against Risho to allow one final win for his allies in the current round of the Dark Tournament. He even says the line, "It doesn't matter if I die, as long as I take you with me!" Like in Yusuke's case it gets completely subverted: Yukina happens to show up in the audience and thanks to The Power of Love he has for her, Kuwabara instantly regains all his energy and defeats Risho in one hit.
  • In the Festival Arc of Mahou Sensei Negima, Mana goes around sniping people with bullets that send whatever they hit three hours into the future, so that they cannot interfere with Chao's plan, as she would have already won. When she shoots Kaede, Kaede manages to grab her, warping her three hours into the future as well and neutralizing her for the rest of the battle.
  • Hilarious subversion: A Heterodyne tried to do this in Dai-Guard while it was falling into the ocean by grabbing the titular robot's arm, so Akagi just detaches it.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion shows this during the flashback to the fight with an Angel in the previous episode (the first, to be precise). After Unit 01 goes berserk and beats the crap out of the Angel, the Angel latches onto it, and blows itself up. While this damages the Eva, it doesn't kill it.
    • Rei Ayanami also does this to take out the 16th Angel and save Shinji, and Mari does this in Rebuild of Evangelion to take out the 3rd Angel. Whilst Mari survives, her Eva certainly doesn't.
    • The manga version of the invasion of NERV features a wounded Misato waiting with a primed grenade for the soldiers tracking her.
  • RahXephon has Kuki cornering Kunugi in TERRA's control center. Kunugi is heavily injured, his opponent is inside a huge, invincible Dolem that just laid waste to the entire island. His solution? Activate a failsafe in the teleporter between the control center and the Xephon's holding pen that causes the entire island to erupt into a second Tokyo Jupiter. Cue Kuki going Oh Crap when he sees his opponent's half-smile that just reeks of saying "Checkmate, sucker."
  • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Kyoko does this to Sayaka, to save both of them and to make sure she doesn't die alone.
  • The first Tenchi movie, Tenchi Muyo In Love: villain Kain, while being sucked into an alternate dimension, exclaims "If I have to go... I won't go alone!" and grabs the hero's parents.
  • During the Enies Lobby Arc of One Piece, Franky subverts this by saying he's going to blow himself up, taking Enies Lobby and everyone else in a three-kilometer-wide explosion with him. While all of the Marines are trying to escape he grabs Robin and explosively farts his way out of the building, in an attempt to escape.
    • After the Time Skip, Brook, now a famous rock star, tells his managers that he plans to return to his pirate life. It doesn't take long for the Navy to show up.

Manager: Your popularity is still on the rise! We could've made a fortune off you! But you betrayed us! Our company is dissolved! Let's all die together, Soul King!

    • Another example occurred way back on Drum Island when Dalton planned on stopping Wapol doing this, via going into Wapol's castle with a load of dynamite strapped to him. However, he never gets the chance to try, as Luffy had already forcibly banished Wapol by the time he arrived.
  • Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro: The titular character takes down the Big Bad because he wants to protect his food supply, even if he ends up dying. The logic is a typical Mind Screw but he IS a demon. Subverted when he gets better.
  • In the fourth season of Bakugan, Mag Mel tries this after being beaten by Dan and Drago, revealing that all the energy he's absorbed means his death will result in it all being released in a massive explosion, which he attempts to use to kill them all. They survive though.
  • In most continuities, this is how Musashi Tomoe goes out, detonating the Getter Core and eradicating the Dinosaur Empire.
  • Rurouni Kenshin: When opium dealer Kanryuu Takeda was caught by the police and knew there was no way he could avoid death penalty, he tried to exact revenge on Megumi Takani, who made opium for him until she decided to leave his service, by denouncing her as a member of his drug ring but Kenshin told the police she was an innocent whose medical knowledge led Takeda to try to force her to make opium.

Card Games[edit | hide]

  • Doomtown has a card called Take Ya With Me. Which was part of a cheesy strategy dubbed "lose to win" (use it with a Mook to give your opponent a Pyrrhic Victory, maybe healing the mook afterward to add insult to injury) until it received errata that you can only target someone who's more of a mook than one of your dudes getting killed.
  • Nuclear War has the "Retaliatory Strike" rule where a player who has lost the last of his population may immediately launch all of his missles and warheads at whomever he likes. If one of his targets is eliminated in the process, then that nation may make a retaliatory strike of his own. It's possible to launch the unique 100 Megaton warhead in the hopes of getting a lucky roll and destroying the world in the process.
  • In Magic: The Gathering any spell that deals damage to both you and an opponent such as Earthquake or Pestilence can be used for this.
  • Poo: the card game (a game based around monkeys throwing you-can-guess-what at each other) contains two copies of a card called Blaze of Glory, which allows a player, when eliminated, to fling all the poop he currently has at whoever he chooses. This tends to be hoarded along with all the really good poop, and has been known to produce a game which nobody wins thanks to chain reactions.
  • There are several cards that invoke this in the Yu-Gi-Oh TCG. An obvious one is Self Destruct Button, which kills both players if there is a 7000 Life Point difference between players. A couple more would be Ring of Destruction (a card which dealt damage to both players equal to the targeted monster's attack, now Forbidden) and Morphing Jar (if a player flips it when both players have less than five cards in their deck.)

Comic Books[edit | hide]

  • The Punisher, Suicide Run sub story. The Punisher has just finished killing all the heads of the big Mafia families from around the world (again). He is helped by the fact he's carrying a dead man's trigger in his left hand, connected to a huge bomb in the otherwise empty building. But wait...there's one guy left. A jerk-ass nobody who runs some gangs out of New York. The punk points out it's just him and the Punisher and maybe both could walk away. Nope. No deal. BOOM.
  • The end of Crisis on Infinite Earths has the Anti-Monitor coming after Superman of Earth-2 one last time, with the words "Superman... I will not die... unless you die with me!"
  • In the Archie Sonic the Hedgehog series—technically, the side-sides starring Knuckles the Echidna—Tobor (a former Guardian who was unknowingly replaced by a member of the Dark Legion thanks to an accident during battle) emerged from the Legion's former prison with Kragog back into the real world and proceeded to slam themselves into an energy cannon being used by the Legion. This turns into a Stupid Sacrifice when you realize that the energy cannon was being used to rescue the trapped citizens of Echindaopolis on Knuckles' orders.
  • In Blackest Night, this is how Kyle Rayner takes out the Black Lanterns assaulting the Green Lantern Central Power Battery—he traps them in a forcefield with him and an Alpha Lantern Battery on the verge of Going Critical.
  • 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Mirage-the original Eastman and Laird series is far more brutal than the cartoons or movies made in its name. In its climactic Turtles vs Foot Clan scene, the Foot Clan is slashed to pieces (with blood and severed limbs all about) and Shredder beaten to a gasping pulp. Leonardo offers him a dagger with which to perform seppuku, so he could go out like the samurai he dresses like. Instead, Shredder pulls out a grenade and attempts to perform this trope.
  • In Final Crisis, Batman, about to be hit with Darkseid's Omega Sanction, shoots the literal God of Evil with a radion bullet, killing his physical body, starting the process of his final defeat.
  • In X Men, at the end of the Inferno arc, Madelyne Pryor tries to trap Jean in her dying mind and thus take her with her, recreating the incident that awakened Jean's powers in the first place (Jean nearly died inside the mind of her friend Annie, who was run over - Madelyne was given this memory by Sinister). Madelyne would succeed if it weren't for the Phoenix Force offering Jean the opportunity to live if she absorbs both Phoenix and Madelyne's personalities.
  • Warren Ellis and Juan Jose Ryp's Black Summer has Tom Noir use his old girlfriend's gun to blow up a cemetery, taking both John Horus and Frank Blacksmith with him, thus taking out the main people behind the whole situation.
  • From Infinite Crisis, Brother Eye, after being attacked and its stabilizing unit sent hurling down to earth, activated its defense systems on the satellite to bring down its creator Batman with it as well.
  • In the prologue to New Frontier, John Cloud jumps into the mouth of the Tyrannisaurus Rex that killed the rest of his unit while holding two live grenades. It's currently the Page Image for Dying Moment of Awesome. King Faraday takes his place in the Animated Adaptation.
  • There's a were-tiger character in Gold Digger who earned the nickname "Were-Lemming" because as a child, her preferred technique for defending other kids against bullies was to grab onto the bully and pull him or her off a cliff or into some other painful though non-fatal situation. They'd both get hurt ... but the "Were-Lemming" always walked away smiling anyway. It turns out Taking You with Me is still a favored tactic of hers....


Film[edit | hide]

  • The final three survivors in John Carpenter's The Thing realize they have no hope of winning against the alien organism in their camp, and to allow it to retreat as it tries to would mean the end of the world (and presumably every other world it plans to infect). MacReady tells the remaining survivors that none of them are going to make it out of this alive, but "neither is that thing." They decide to blow up their entire camp, ensuring their own deaths in a last-ditch attempt to kill it before it can freeze itself back into the ice until it can infect the incoming rescue team, which would then infect them and everything they come into contact with afterward without anyone's knowledge. After MacReady detonates the cave The Thing is hiding in with a Crowning Moment of Awesome "Yeah, fuck you too!" The two survive the blast itself, but as one character says in the final scene as they realize they're no longer in any shape to fight, the fires are going to go out eventually, and so there's no ambiguity that they'll eventually freeze to death long before the rescue team arrives. Finally, because they both realize that it's still possible one of them is infected, they agree that it's for the best that they both die with it, to make sure that it's truly dead.
  • Shredder, at the end of the second Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie, drank the mutagen, which transformed him into Super Shredder, and attempted to destroy the Turtles along with himself by bringing the pier down on their heads.
  • Debatable if this was what he actually had in mind. Looks more like he was just rather clumsily trying to hit the Turtles, resulting in him hitting the pier supports instead.
  • Bangkok Dangerous has Joe committing suicide to kill his target, Surat, by putting their heads together.
  • Leon: Léon: The Professional has its title character doing this to Stansfield in the climax: "This is from... Mathilda." BOOM!
  • In The Generals Daughter, the killer deliberately steps on a landmine in an attempt to blow up Brenner and Sunhill along with himself. He's the only one caught in the blast.
  • Lieutenant Gorman and Private Vasquez in Aliens.
  • The end of the Wild Wild West movie has Arliss Loveless in a position where he could very well survive along with the hero, but also has the option of pulling this on him, leaving him feeling genuinely conflicted about the issue.

"I'm facing a very difficult problem here. On the one hand, I have an overwhelming love for myself... and on the other, the raw, seething hatred that I have for you. I could kill you very easily, Mr. West, just by pulling on this lever. But I would die along with you, hence my conflict."

    • West makes the choice for him, pulling the lever and sending both down into a very deep chasm. Only West has the option of grabbing a chain.
  • At the end of 1408, Mike Enslin is informed that his only way out of the evil room is suicide, and helpfully provided with a noose. Deciding he'd rather go out on his own terms, he makes a Molotov Cocktail out of a bottle of cognac, sets the bed on fire, then - with some appropriate final words - smashes the window, causing a backdraft to destroy the room. (Whether or not Enslin himself survives depends which ending you're watching.)
  • Predator. One of the key things about the creature is that it has a nuclear bomb in its watch thing, which it activates if it thinks it's near death.
    • In Predators, similar to I Am Legend above, Nikolai takes the pin off a mine while facing a Predator to blow up both of them. While telling it it's an ugly bastard.
  • In Lord of the Rings, the villianous Balrog takes Gandalf down with him. Of course, since Gandalf is one of the good guys, he comes back
    • Saruman also threatens a version of this when Gandalf tries to break the wizard's hold on King Theoden: "If I go, Theoden dies." It's a bluff.
  • Terminator 3 has the T-850 destroying the T-X by removing his "fuel cell" (which gets unstable and explodes outside his body) and putting it in her mouth ("You are terminated!"). Apparently self-termination is only possible by employing this.
  • Star Trek II the Wrath of Khan has a defeated Khan use Ahab's lines as he attempts to destroy Enterprise along with himself.
    • This occurs again in Star Trek: Nemesis when Shinzon tries to use his own deadly superweapon to kill himself and everyone aboard the Enterprise.
      • Not really, because Shinzon's imminent death had nothing to do with setting off the weapon (his genetic decay due to the cloning procedure used to create him would have killed him within hours; he set off the weapon so that he could finish his mission first)
      • Kruge attempts to do this to Kirk in Star Trek III: The Search For Spock, but "I... have had... enough of YOU!"
  • Stealth employed this. The AI plane used this as the Last Act of Sacrifice against a North Korean helicopter. Immediately charged up to hypersonic and boom goes the helicopter. Final words: "Good bye."
  • Russell Casse from the movie Independence Day pulls one of these with his fighter on an alien ship's core after his missile failed to fire, and proceeds to take the entire ship with him. By hitting the ship's charging weapon For Massive Damage. "Hello, boys! I'm Baacck!".
  • Demon Knight, a movie produced under the Tales from the Crypt banner. A seriously maimed mother type and the deputy who loves her decide to go out big-grenade style in order to destroy many of the monster's minions.
  • The film Dragonslayer has sacrifice as the way to, well, slay the dragon.
  • Richter from Total Recall tries to pull one of these on Quaid. Come to think of it, a taxicab tries to pull it on him, too. Neither works.
  • Deep Impact and Armageddon did this to a meteorite.
  • In Advent Children, this happens when Loz and Yazoo shoot Cloud through the back whilst he's having a Redemption in the Rain moment, before making a huge explosion. It partly works, killing themselves, but only sending Cloud to The Lifestream for a couple of minutes.
    • This troper seems to remember that they, having been somehow formed almost exclusively by Jenova, were actively dissolving in the purifying rain—explosion unrelated. Still, the were avenging Sephiroth, Jenova, and Kadaj by killing Cloud even as they went down, so it still counts. Only Cloud had a Get Out of Death Free card for world-saving, apparently.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean, the second one. This trope is invoked (by none other than Jack, naturally). It doesn't exactly go off as planned (because this is PotC).
  • In Dr. Strangelove, the the Soviets build a cobalt bomb capable of annihilating all life on Earth. It will be set off automatically if anyone makes a nuclear attack on the USSR.
  • In The Wrath of God, one of the "heroes" is mortally wounded but grapples his killer—then brings up one hand holding a grenade. Grinning into the other man's horrified face (at about four inches), he says, "Life is just full of surprises!" before pulling the pin with his teeth and holding the grenade alongside their heads. Boom.
  • In John Wayne's film version of the Battle of the Alamo, the hero manages to touch off the fort's powder storage, annihilating the victorious Mexican troops. In the real battle, a soldier tried this, but was killed in the attempt.
  • In Shanghai Knights, Chon Wang is clearly outmatched by Lord Rathbone, so he cuts the ropes supporting the platform they are both standing on and sends both of them through the glass face of Big Ben. Chon is caught by Roy O'Bannon, who was knocked through the same glass a little earlier.
  • In The Wraith, the title character actually allows his own car to be struck and blown up 3 times. He also drives it into the chop shop and blows the place sky-high with it. Packard was also worried that he was trying to do this by firing his shotgun inside the chop shop, mentioning that it was full of volatile chemical fumes. At the end of the movie, Packard tries unsuccessfully to do this to the Wraith.
  • Christine is capable of self-restoration, and thus damages herself multiple times while killing Buddy's gang. Most noticably is when she blows up the gas station while she's inside, effectively turning herself into a driving fireball.
  • A version of this occurs at the end of Stargate: Continuum when Teal'c is mortally wounded during the final battle and primes a grenade as his opponents stand over him gloating.
    • "I think not, Quetesh... I die free!"
  • In Lake Placid 3, Reba kills the croc that kills her...with a hunting knife. As if she wasn't Badass enough as it was.
  • Happens near the end of the otherwise subpar Soulkeeper (2001). One of the protagonists while trapped in the grip of the demonic Big Bad sets off a bomb right in its face, killing them both.
  • The Devil in the form of the Antichrist Franco Maccalusso in the Apocalypse film series pretty much knows he's doomed for the Lake Of Fire, and so decides to take as many souls with him in the Tribulation through the Mark of the Beast.
  • At the end of Aladdin, just before Jafar gets sucked into a lamp after being tricked into becoming a genie, he grabs Iago the parrot by the tail feathers and pulls him into said lamp along with him.
  • Just before the end of |Toy Story 3, Lotso, after Big Baby throws him into a dumpster, actually grabs Woody by the leg and pulls him, Buzz Lightyear, and the rest of Andy's toys into said dumpster as soon as the garbage truck comes to take them all to the dump.
  • Sitka's method of dispatching the bear that was attacking Kenai (after Kenai went after said bear alone for reasons explained earlier) in Brother Bear; they're on top of a glacier, and Sitka drives his spear into the ice, causing a huge block of the glacier to break off and fall into the river below, taking the bear with him. Sitka dies but the bear survives, motivating Kenai to once again track the bear down and slay it in an act of revenge, which in turn invokes the wrath of the Great Spirits and kicks off the rest of the plot.
  • Attempted as a last-ditched effort to buy Han Solo some time by Lando Calrissian in Return of the Jedi once the second Death Star is revealed to be "fully armed and operational":

Lando: Yes, I said closer! Move as close as you can, and engage those Star Destroyers at point blank range!
Admiral Ackbar: At that close range we won't last long against those Star Destroyers!
Lando: We'll last longer than we will against that Death Star! And we might just take a few of them with us!

  • Adapting actual legend, the Excalibur movie has a dramatic scene where Arthur successfully runs Mordren through, and Mordred leans forward and pulls the sword deeper as he dies to get close enough to stab Arthur back. Then they both die.
    • Of course, this has been said to have happened to Arthur since the seventh century, before he was even consistently called Arthur. He and Mordred mutual killed before there was Camelot, or Guinevere, or even Merlin.
  • In the film of Double Indemnity, after being shot by Phyllis, Neff kills her before later succumbing to his injuries.
  • In the climax of The Great Mouse Detective Basil manages to defeat Ratigan by activating the chimes on the Big Ben clock tower, the resulting shockwave sends Ratigan falling from the tower he grabs a hold of Basil and takes him with him, Basil manages to survive by grabbing a part of the blimp he was hanging onto and using it like a propeller.
  • Original production materials indicated that Gaston killing the Beast before falling off the castle was actually closer to this trope than the final version's Backstab Backfire.
  • At the end of Dinosaur, as the Carnotaurus is about to fall into the ravine, he immediately bites onto Aladar's leg, but the Iguanodon manages to shake him off before climbing back up.
  • In Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, as Holmes and Moriarty prepare to fight each other atop Reichenbach Falls, they both use Awesomeness By Analysis to calculate their strategies in the upcoming fight, and both conclude that a victory for Moriarty is almost inevitable due to Holmes suffering a crippling shoulder wound. Upon realising this, Holmes pulls the one move Moriarty didn't anticipate: blowing pipe ash in Moriarty's face to distract him, then dragging both of them over the edge of the falls.
  • Cato in the climax to the film adaptation to The Hunger Games does a variation of the trope. During the final battle between him, Peeta, and Katniss, Cato attempts to use Peeta as a Human Shield against Katniss, and is literally attempting to goad her into shooting him, implying that by that point, he doesn't really care anymore if he survives the games or not.
  • In the film version of Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows, Harry attempts this at one point during the final battle, attempting to throw himself and Voldemort off of a rampart to their death.

Harry: Come on, Tom. Lets finish this the way we started... together!

Literature[edit | hide]

  • Sherlock Holmes practically invented this trope by going down with Moriarty, and successfully pulling this trope twice in one shot! Not only did he drag his arch-nemesis off the edge, but in a Crowning Moment of Awesome he also took his creator Sir Arthur Conan Doyle with him. Doyle's reputation was ruined for trying to kill the greatest literary character of all time, so much so that he was forced to bring Holmes back to life in order to save it.
  • In one of Aesop's Fables, a wasp lands on a snake's head and amuses itself by tormenting and stinging the poor snake. The snake eventually can't take it any more, so it crawls over to the side of a road and places its head underneath the wheels of a travelling cart, killing both itself and the wasp.
  • In The Bible, Judge Samson is captured by the Philistines and blinded, then put on public display in the temple. After praying to God to give him back his strength for a last time so he can go down honorably, he proceeds to tear down the pillars of said temple with his hands, crushing both himself and the Philistines and making this Older Than Feudalism (this being, of course, The Bible), as well as his Crowning Moment of Awesome.
  • The protagonist in the short story version of The Running Man.
  • Agrajag attempts this in Douglas Adams' Life The Universe And Everything, despite having found out that Arthur Dent can't be killed yet. Result: Arthur survives, and Agrajag is dead again.
  • Happens in book 18 of K. A. Applegate's Animorphs.
    • And in the last book, on Jake's orders, and possibly in the last sentence.
      • Which is an Ironic Echo to The Andalite Chronicles where Elfangor pulls the same stunt on Visser Three (although both survive).
  • In Dale Brown's Fatal Terrain Brad Elliot crashes the crippled Megafortress into a Chinese ICBM site.
    • In Storming Heaven a pilot crashes his F-16 into a 747 that was heading for Washington DC and aiming itself at the White House.
  • Wizards of Jim Butcher's The Dresden Files universe have this as one of their powers. Their death curse, cast using their life's energy in their final moments, is a significant threat that keeps most supernaturals from taking them on directly. It's not unavoidable, as sufficient preparation, such as a sniper rifle, can kill a wizard before they know what's happening and, thus, can not bring out the curse. Someone of significant power can also repel a death curse.
  • In the Eoin Colfer novel The Supernaturalist, a hero, Stefan Bashkir, after being mortally wounded at the end of the book, attempts to drag villain Ellen Faustino to a fiery death in a literal dead man's grip. Subverted in that Bashkir dies and Faustino survives (albeit horribly disfigured) to continue her evil plan.
  • In Frank Herbert's Dune, Doctor Yueh gives Leto a fake tooth filled with Deadly Gas with which to try to assassinate Baron Harkonnen. Leto breaks the tooth and exhales, but the Baron is able to move away just in time thanks to his personal shield, leaving Piter de Vries to take a big whiff and drop dead.
    • In the prequels, a Harkonnen does this to eliminate an extremely influential politician who was also Drunk with Power.
    • The witches of Rossak employ this tactic, by using their immense psychic powers to fry all organic brains within a large radius, cyborg and human alike.
  • In the Redwall series, the Badger Lords of Salamandastron frequently invoke this trope. The Badger Lords usually do die along with whatever villain they are trying to kill.
    • Typically they use this as their Crowning Moment of Awesome. One Badger Lord essentially pile-drives a foe off a mountain. While already dying.
  • In Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time, there is a technique wherein you allow your defenses open so your opponent stabs their weapon into your body. Thus hindered, you then counterattack, killing them but likely dying in the process. Of course, the protagonist using it doesn't die.
    • Neither does the antagonist at that time. When the Big Bad can move dead souls into new bodies that doesn't mean much, but the protagonist fights the antagonist who inhabits the same body later in the series. Neither of them die in the first duel, but both are grievously wounded.
  • Mages can do this in Mercedes Lackey's Heralds of Valdemar novels, overloading themselves past survivable limits to deliver a final blow to their enemy or their surroundings in a technique known as a Final Strike. Herald-Mage Vanyel finishes the Last Herald-Mage trilogy in this way, combining his own stored-away energy and his Companion Yfandes' to take out an enemy mage, immolate his army, and glass the entire valley they were attacking through.
    • In Brightly Burning Lavan does something similar after his Companion is killed, destroying the entire invading army, and shattering stone with the heat of his fire. Since she was the control mechanism for his power, it's expected.
  • The villainess from CS Lewis' The Silver Chair enchants her kingdom to self-destruct after her death specifically for this purpose.
  • Moby Dick, as quoted above.
  • Used in the final battle against the Cannibal Welfare Mutants in Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle's Lucifer's Hammer. "At the Academy, they taught us there was one sure way not to miss..."
  • Garth Nix's Sabriel. The bell Astarael sends all who hear it deep into Death. Very much a last resort for the necromancer or Abhorsen who uses it, such as Sabriel's father, cornered by Kerrigor and hordes of Dead in the palace reservoir. Sabriel and Touchstone narrowly escape. In this series, though, dying isn't necessarily more than a minor obstacle.
  • In Nick Perumov's Ordered Universe, a wizard's sacrifice gives him enormous powers at this moment, allowing to take down enemies far stronger than he is.
  • In Snow Crash, the Badass Biker has a hydrogen bomb on his motorcycle, rigged to explode if he dies. It doesn't go off during the book.
  • The Balrog attempts this against Gandalf. Gandalf makes it mutual. Both "succeed", such as it is: Gandalf slays the Balrog, but succumbs to his wounds. Later, he returns.
    • In The Silmarillion, an elf called Glorfindel fights a Balrog at the siege of Gondolin and manages to kill it, but both fall to their doom off the cliff.
  • 1633 has two such moments, sort of, in a single battle. First, Eddie Cantrell (accidentally) rams his crippled speedboat into a Danish warship, followed by Hans Richter, wounded and knowing he can't make it to a safe landing, flying his plane into another warship. Hans is immortalized as a war hero. Eddie, surviving by sheer luck, is captured by the Danes. But he eventually hooks up with the Danish king's daughter and gets made an Imperial count, so he wins.
  • In Legend of Galactic Heroes, Adrian Rubisnky, the former leader of the formerly independent planet Phezzan, dying of a brain tumor, had had a brain wave monitor implanted to his brain that would cause a shitload of explosives to detonate in the event of his death. As the city in question to be blown up was the capital of the former Alliance, the interference of the cultist faction bent on destroying both the Alliance and the Empire is a given.
  • In a metaphorical sense, oil tycoon Ellis Wyatt from Atlas Shrugged, when he sets his oil fields ablaze in response to laws aimed at draining him dry. He even says the trope name in almost so many words beforehand, as foreshadowing.
  • In Wizards First Rule, there's a spell mentioned called "Wizard's Life Fire." A wizard who knows this spell can sacrifice his life and go out in one big fireball.
  • In Stephen R. Donaldson's Gap series, Ciro implodes a singularity grenade to destroy the Amnion warship.
  • In the short story Above It All, some kind of creepy presence possesses the Mir space station and makes a cosmonaut kill himself. An American astronaut gets sent up to recover the cosmonaut's body and the presence gives him a mental Hannibal Lecture and prevents him from reaching the escape capsule. He fires the station's control jets, sending himself, the presence, and the station falling into the atmosphere, where they all burn up.
  • In Mistborn, this is how Vin kills Ruin. In fact, this is implied to have been the only way Ruin could have died, as Vin had recently become a god and Ruin's opposite. Because their powers were equal, only complete self-sacrifice on Vin's part would be able to destroy her opponent's consciousness. As such, both characters die.
  • In the Star Wars book Dark Rendezvous, Count Dooku plans one of these by aiming a missile at his mansion, in case Yoda turned him to the light side. Naturally, Yoda stops the missile from hitting, by pushing it off course.
    • Likewise in The Cestus Deception ARC Captain Nate having discovered his own sense of individuality and a life and family outside of being a soldier in the GAR, commits both TYWM and Heroic Sacrifice by ordering an orbital bombardment down on his own coordinates to ensure Cestus's corrupt leaders don't escape the planet. Some compensation in his romantic interest is revealed to be pregnant with his child at epilogue.
  • Many Sith and Dark Jedi in the Star Wars Expanded Universe have a power that lets them violently explode upon being mortally wounded, like the Emperor did in Return of the Jedi. It's strong enough to be very dangerous at close range - unfortunately for the Dark Jedi and Sith, in all of the books where this happens the people who kill them are also canny enough to get out of the way.
  • In The Coming of the White Worm by Clark Ashton Smith Evagh's slaying of Rlim Shaikorth also means his own death, but he was doomed anyway.
    • In a partial example, the main character's releasing the narcotic gas in Vulthoom also by Clark Ashton Smith means that he and his friend are going to die from dehydration in their drugged sleep, but the bad guys are only going to sleep a thousand years.
  • In Les Misérables, Marius threatens the enemy with this when he arrives on the barricade. He has a powder keg. The National Guard leave very quickly. Unfortunately, they return later...
  • In the Tom Clancy novel Red Storm Rising, the readers (and a Soviet general) are shown the end result of a NATO fighter that crashed into the anti-aircraft mount that shot it down.
  • Good Omens has Agnes Nutter, a 17th century witch who managed to take out the entire village who lynched her. Protip: Don't burn someone at the stake until you've checked their pockets for gunpowder and nails.
  • One of the stories in Assassin Fantastic involves a Complete Monster attempting to do this to his entire world after his death. It's countered by sending an assassin after him to snuff out his soul.
  • The Night Watch series features an uber-spell called "The sarcophagus of times". When used it's supposed to seal both the caster and the victim inside the said sarcophagus till the end of the Universe.
  • In Stephen King's Desperation, the defeat of Tak.
  • In Otherland, the Other enacts its final bit of revenge against the villains who tormented it by crashing the satellite in which it is housed into the headquarters of J Corp, committing suicide in the most dramatic and spectacular way possible.
  • Robyn goes out this way in The Tomorrow Series, taking out a traitorious Australian.
  • In Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian novel The Hour of the Dragon, when Valerius realizes he will never control his kingdom, he decides to ruin all his fellow conspirators in his fall.
  • In the Chronicles of Ancient Darkness, it's necessary, to disable a shard of the fire-opal, to "give" it a human life, which calls for a "taking-*it*-with-me".
  • Septimus Heap:
    • In Physik, Queen Etheldredda unsucessfully tries to do this with Jenna.
    • In Darke, Tertius Fume takes Alther's ghost with him as Marcia banishes him to the Darke Halls.
  • In The Fionavar Tapestry, Diarmuid duels the captain of the evil army, Uathach, but is unable to hurt the monster because Uathach gigantic sword keeps him too far away. He only manages to kill Uathach by letting the gigantic sword stab him full through the left half of his torso, at which point he stabs the evil captain in the face.
  • Codex Alera has two of these. The first is Kalarus rigging the volcano that his city resides on to blow if he dies, by sealing the great fury inhabiting the volcano to him. This will kill not only his city, but any of Alera's Legions in the region. Gaius Sextus proceeds to prematurely detonate the volcano, destroying the city before his Legions could arrive. Sextus gets his own moment when the Vord are assaulting Alera Imperia, and he destroys himself about 90% of their army by detonating another volcano on them.
  • In the Federation of the Hub story The Demon Breed, invading aliens have captured Ticos Cay, a research biologist. Knowing that they'll execute him sooner or later, he manages to stock his prison/laboratory with a large number of innocuous-looking biological specimens—which, given the correct stimulus, aren't innocuous at all.
  • In Jack Campbell's The Lost Fleet novel Invincible, two different alien species go in for suicide attacks.
  • In the Chalion trilogy this is how a Death Miracle works, one prays to the Bastard, who sends a demon for the soul of the target, however the demon must take two souls before it can return, so it takes the soul of the person who asked for the miracle as well.


Live Action TV[edit | hide]

  • In the third season finale of Lost, Mikhail is impaled on a spear, but turns out to be Not Quite Dead and blows himself up, indirectly taking Charlie with him.
  • The alternate Sam Carter, from the Stargate SG-1 episode "There But for the Grace of God." This move (luring her attackers in with an offer of valuable information, then revealing the live grenade in her hand) was a Crowning Moment of Awesome.
    • Apparently, this is the preferred way for alternate Carters to go. Another version, in Stargate Atlantis's "The Last Man", manages to take three whole hive ships with her.
    • Also attempted by General Hammond in the Prometheus during Anubis's attack on Earth. After exhausting all missiles and with shields nearly exhausted, Hammond orders the pilot to set a collision course for Anubis's mothership. While the collision is averted by said mothership being destroyed by other means, Hammond's line describes this trope perfectly.

George Hammond: If we go, they go.

  • In the final episode of Blakes Seven, we are told that Jenna blew her ship up and took a considerable number of Federation ships with her.
    • In addition to this at the series finale After every single living character has seemingly just been killed off, Avon levels his weapon at the Federation troops holding him at gunpoint. He grins, and the screen turns black. The last thing the audience hear is apparently him opening fire and then being gunned down himself.
  • Babylon 5
    • Captain John Sheridan, on the Shadow planet of Z'Ha'Dum. Though he is later revived.
    • Also Jeffrey Sinclair at the Battle of the Line ("In the Beginning"), declaring "I'm taking you bastards with me!" as he prepares to ram a Minbari ship. Instead, his fighter is stopped by a Minbari tractor ray and he is taken captive.
    • When Babylon 5 is attacked by President Clark's forces in "Severed Dreams", one of the Omega destroyers that has arrived to help defend the station is so heavily damaged that her crew cannot even get to the life pods. Her captain (who, somewhat ironically, happens to be of Japanese descent) decides to take one of the opposing destroyers with her.
    • All of them are easily one-upped by Earth President Clark, who, when facing arrest for his innumerous crimes, overrides the Earth defence grid to obliterate all life on the planet and then shoots himself.
    • During one of the first battles of the Earth-Minbari War, the Minbari attacked the Vega colony. At this time, 5 Nova-X prototypes (which would later become the Omega class) were being tested. They were drafted into the defense fleet. All defense ships but one were eliminated by the first Minbari volley. The remaining ship, a Nova-X manages to ram a Minbari Sharlin-class warcruiser, destroying both.
  • In the series finale of Alias, a mortally wounded Jack takes the now-immortal Sloane with him by blowing himself up. While Sloane doesn't die (see: immortal), he's trapped under an immovable mound of rocks in a secluded mountain, which means he isn't going anywhere for a while.
  • A particularly nasty version occurs in an early episode of Battlestar Galactica Reimagined, where a model Five Cylon acts as a suicide bomb. Cylons being Cylons, this didn't kill him permanently.
    • BSG loves this trope; most spectacularly, the entire third season comes about as a direct result of a suicidal Cylon nuking herself and the ship she was on, thus causing an anomalous radiation signature which led the Cylons straight to the humans' hiding place.
      • Not to mention that much of the third season's beginning was concerned with Colonials suicide bombing their Cylon occupiers.
  • In the three-part story occurring just before the Farscape series finale, Crichton builds a nuclear bomb, wearing it on his belt (which was the style at the time...) and linking its trigger to about two dozen different signs of life (body temperature, heart rate, etc.), including some even he wasn't aware of, before crashing a conference attended by his two biggest enemies. It goes off, but not while it's attached to him; still, the threat is definitely there.
    • In The Peacekeeper Wars, a wounded D'Argo stays behind to show the bad guys "who their daddy is!" to cover his friends' escape.
    • Played completely straight in the third season finale. In order to stop the Peacekeeper's wormhole project, Crais and Talyn initiate starburst while still inside the command carrier. The resulting energy dispersion causes the carrier to implode, but tears Talyn to pieces with Crais onboard.
  • Done particularly viciously in the season finale of Ashes to Ashes, when the car bomb that killed Alex's parents turns out to have been planted by her father, who'd suffered a psychotic break after his wife cheated on him; it was originally intended to take out all three of them, and ten-year-old Alex only escaped by accident, having gotten out of the car at the last moment to chase after a lost balloon. And Future!Alex gets there just in time to see it all happen.
  • Red Dwarf: With typical inhumanity, the immediate response of a Rogue Simulant commander on hearing that the Dwarfers have managed to cripple his ship with a fluke hit, and weapons are down, is "Take them with us!"
  • Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future: Jeniffer "Pilot" Chase, alone and mortally wounded against the army of Biodreads storming the Powerbase, waits for the nigh-unstoppable Blastarr to come right up to her before detonating the base's reactor. "Go to Hell," indeed.
  • In Star Trek: Deep Space Nine this was a common tactics of Jem'Haddar - their ships crashed into their enemies ships and self-destructed, taking both.
    • When in one episode Defiant is captured, Sisko rigs it so when the occupants enter warp, the ship will blow, killing everyone on board.
      • Sisko later kills Dukat in that manner, though he ascends as an apparent reward for his vigilance.
    • One of Riker's plans to defeat the Borg after Picard's assimilation was to crash the Enterprise into the cube.
    • In Star Trek: Voyager, said ship once self-destructed, taking a Vidian ship with it—the episode had created a "copy" of the ship. At the end of "Year Of Hell", Janeway took Voyager and rammed a Timeship, destroying both—and activating a Reset Button.
    • In the series finale, Admiral Janeway (from an alternate future) sacrifices herself to infect the Borg with a virus that destroys the Transwarp Hub.
      • And in one novel Admiral Janeway, assimilated by another Borg group, sabotages their firewall, allowing another virus to work.
    • In one episode, Chakotay beams down to a planet with a photon torpedo rigged to detonate, killing him...and all the aliens who had been plaguing the ship with narcolepsy. It's Better Than It Sounds.
  • Kelly, in Dead Set decides to try and kill as many zombies as she can before dying with a single hand axe. This obviously ends with her becoming very, very dead.
  • Being Human (UK): Herrick is about to be ripped apart by George. He is reconciled to his fate because he believes that, by killing him, George will lose his last shred of humanity. If Herrick's going to Hell, he's taking George with him.
  • A variant occurs in the Doctor Who episode "Bad Wolf". The Gamemaster is teleported aboard a hidden Dalek ship, after bringing the Doctor on board the Gamestation and giving him a clue to reveal their location. Her last words before being exterminated are:

The Gamemaster: My masters... you can kill me, for I have brought your destruction.

    • This almost happens (in both directions) in The End of Time, when The Doctor sends the Time Lords back to Gallifrey. Rassilon informs the Doctor that he will die with the Time Lords, to which the Doctor says simply "I know". Luckily, The Master has other plans.
    • Subverted in "The Satan Pit", when the Doctor decides to send the Beast into a black hole. Before the TARDIS can appear and save him, he proclaims that:

The Doctor: This is your freedom. Free to die. You're going into the black hole and I'm riding with you.

  • In Heroes, Matt Parkman gets possessed by Sylar, who is going to use Matt's powerful psychic abilities to get his bloody revenge on everybody who tried to erase his memories in the previous season finale. But Matt pulls one last psychic gambit, and forces his own Suicide by Cop to try and kill Sylar once and for all. It's a shame he's in a series where Death Is Cheap, or it might have actually worked.
  • In the finale of Power Rangers in Space, Darkonda stabs Dark Specter in the figurative back with a planet-destroying missile, twice, since Dark Specter is just that powerful. Dark Specter pulls this on Darkonda, swallowing him just as he's exploding. An odd case where both killed were irredeemably evil villains.
  • This basically constitutes Watson's plan to defeat Moriarty in Sherlock. It doesn't work.
    • Also seems to be Sherlock's plan to take down Moriarty at the pool in the series finale, but knowing him, he's probably got something else up his sleeve. As it is, we'll have to wait until fall 2011 to see...
  • This exchange from the Cold Case episode Knuckle Up: "If you do this... you're going down." "Then you're coming with me." This is followed by the confession that implicated the one making the threat.
  • In Criminal Minds, the initial suspect for a series of arson murders turns out to be innocent, but knows who isn't. He lures the guy to a benzene-contaminated warehouse that's going to be converted into an elementary school on the promise they'll burn it down, in the full knowledge the guy intends to kill him. (He's already dying of leukemia.) On being asked how he's planning to get out, he smiles and says "I'm not". The Oh Crap look on the arsonist's face before the guy flicks open a lighter is beautiful.
  • This was how eliminations worked on the short-lived reality show Boot Camp. After a recruit was voted out, they would then choose another recruit to eliminate as well.
  • In the Rizzoli and Isles episode "Remember Me" Hoyt attempts to kill both Jane and Maura saying that he'll be lonely if he goes to hell alone so he's taking them with him. Jane kills him in response and says "You're going to hell alone!"


Music[edit | hide]

  • Rob Dougan's Left Me For Dead features this as the last line before the final refrain.

I wanted to say
To say that your shot proved the death of me
'Cause now I've reached a dead end
And I can't go back
But if I'm going down you'll come with me

  • Twista's Kill Us All
  • Averted by Emilie Autumn in her song 'Let The Record Show'

"If I'm going down, than I'm going down good"

  • Similar in spirit, but lacking an actual enemy, in Voltaire's "The Ship's Going Down". The ship is utterly destroyed, and the captain takes a small bit of solace in the fact that his crew is going down with him and he's not dying alone. Then he spots the guy no one likes trying to make a getaway on a raft; not having that, he lances a fish-gig into Seaman Shaft's eye.
  • The Dixie Chicks song If I Fall You're Going down with me is an inversion of this trope since the song is actually about falling in love as opposed to dying.

We're hanging right on the edge now baby
The wind is getting stronger
We're hanging on by a thread now honey
We can't hold on much longer
It's a long way down but it's too late

If I fall you're going down with me
You're going down with me baby if I fall
You can't take back every little chill you give me
You're going down with me baby heart and all ooh yeah


Mythology[edit | hide]

  • The Russian bylina tales tell of Chuds, when cornered, digging up dungeons, going there with their valuables, women and children, taking their last stand there and then collapsing them, dying themselves along with their enemies. Several such sites have actually been found.


Stand Up Comedy[edit | hide]

  • Denis Leary, in one of his '90s routines, had a bit (here, starting around 3:00) that could at best be described as "offensively sacrilegious". If the audience's net reaction is even somewhat positive, he adds a denouement, the implication that taking them with him will soften the sting a bit:

"--I'm goin' to Hell for that bit. And you're all comin' with me! 'We didn't laugh at that bit Jesus, pleeeaase!' 'Shut up! Get on the bus with Leary and Scorcese; you're goin' right to fuckin' Hell!' "

  • George Carlin: Of course. On wrathful gods: "If there is a God, IF there is...may he strike this audience dead. See? Nothing happened. Okay, if there is a God, may he strike ME dead. Still nothing." On terrorism: "I think just the concept that a man can blow up a bomb in a crowded market and kill a couple hundred people is exciting and stimulating and I see it as a form of entertainment. I have always been willing to put myself at great personal risk for the sake of entertainment. I'm also willing to put YOU at great personal risk for the same reason."


Tabletop RPG[edit | hide]

  • In Warhammer 40,000 quite a lot of things tend to do this. That is, above and beyond explosion being a fairly common outcome of killing any vehicle larger than a lawnmower.
    • The Brass Scorpion, a Chaos superheavy walker gets + 2 on the table that determines the size of the explosion as the daemon controlling it is driven to spill as much blood as possible, even in death.
    • There is also an ability for the Imperial Guard in the upcoming Apocalypse books called "Fire on my coordinates!" Any Imperial Guard soldier with a radio can basically roll for a leadership test. If he succeeds, an orbital bombardment is dropped right on top of his own position - assuredly killing himself (and his squad) along with any nearby enemies in the process. For the Imperial Guard - who are renowned for their ability to stoically take massive casualties - this is simply a badass way to go.
    • In Battlefleet Gothic and Rogue Trader the spaceships suffering catastrophic damage not only may end up as an enormous fireball, but if the warp drive blows up first, may open a huge portal to hell, sucking everything nearby in along with what's left of the ship. There's even a system for automatic activation of Gellar field if the ship ever finds itself in the Warp unexpectedly, but it's rare, expensive and not very reliable.
    • The Tau leaders are sometimes given a bomb so they can blow themselves up, if they have to, this is viewed as "the greatest expression of the Greater Good one can make" it's only a matter of time until they start using waves of suicide bombers.
    • After losing one of his two hearts, Space Wolf character Lukas the Trickster had it replaced with a stasis bomb. If he's ever killed in combat, there's a chance his opponent will be trapped in a stasis field with him for eternity.
    • Tends to be averted by the Eldar, who see this tactic as an act of barbaric cowardice. They also dislike it because they're already on the verge of extinction themselves, in spite of the fact that they believe that their racial demise will awaken the death god Ynnead, who will destroy Chaos forever and totally play this trope straight.
    • The Grey Knight codex gives us the Brotherhood Champion, an exemplary swordsman of the Chapter capable of going toe to toe with the best fighters of chaos and standing a decent chance of winning. But even when killed, he draws upon all his psychic might and delivers a mutual deathstroke to his foe. this has a fifty fifty chance of succeeding, and it kills anything, even Eternal Warriors and Physical Gods.
  • Dungeons & Dragons
    • The Staves of Magi and Staves of Power, minor artifacts that are a great boon for any spellcaster wielding one of them. In dire straits, their wielder can also break the staff they have... resulting in a retributive strike, which does vast amounts of damage to almost anything capable of threatening them. There's a possible side-effect of a retributive strike that subverts the trope: A 50% chance of the strike opening a rift and casting you into the astral plane...where a thousand years will pass with you only aging a single day.
    • The Draconians in the old Dragonlance setting were evil creatures magically created by evil clerics from the eggs of metallic (good) dragons to fight in the War of the Lance. When mortally wounded, depending on the type, they tended to go up in flames, emit poisonous gas, trap the killing weapon by turning to stone, explode, go berserk and then explode...
    • Lich is not killed permanently until someone destroyed its phylactery, which is supposed to explode immediately.
      • A campaign run by Shamus Young has a lich's phylactery cursed and trapped so while it might be possible to destroy it with ordinary means, it would kill everyone within a 100 mile radius.
    • Forgotten Realms dragonmagic includes "death matrix". Needs to be cast only once, after this the dragon's body will explode upon death, unless disintegrated or something like. As an implanted magic ability, it can't be detected or dispelled like normal waiting enchantments.
      • Red Wizards' "spell lash". It's a spell that kills the caster and makes body explode. Invented during Red Wizards' independence war with Mulhorand theocracy (the experimental variant "mark of Gur", naturally, was castable on another guy).
      • Long before this was "blood dragon", a spell castable only by an elf (not even half-elf): caster cuts down him- or her- self, then the eponymous magical construct rises from the spilt blood and attacks the target. If it as much as touches, it dissolves the target's flesh. They were rather vengeful bunch, those elves.
    • 3.5 edition Complete Scoundrel has "fatal flame" spell which, should its target die before it expires, explode the body in a fireball of power proportional to the target's level. Naturally, can be used on ally or foe alike.
    • In 4th Edition, there is the low-level Boneshard Skeleton that has an absolutely brutal blast for its level that goes off both when bloodied and when reduced to 0 hit points. Worse, if you have a group of them, it's possible that their blast can cause chain reactions with other Boneshard Skeletons caught in the area, with one blast triggering another.
    • In almost any edition, it's become a Running Gag for a person's dying words to be "Hastur, Hastur, Hastur". Canonically, Hastur will then pay a quick visit that results in a good-sized crater where the PC, their party, and whatever they were fighting used to be.
  • The Swedish RPG Chronopia allowed its mages to perform such a manoeuvre. By expending all their remaining Wisdom points (the mana of the game)(which is instant death by itself), they get to spend half their maximum Wisdom points as well, using it all to power a single spell without the usual skill penalties for using high level magic. While it's still possible to fumble the skill throw and not all spells are suitable for a suicide casting like this, a spell like Explosion is sure to cause some severe damage to the topography and anyone unlucky enough to be caught within the blast radius...
  • In Warhammer Fantasy Battle anyone who kills a Tomb King is attacked by voracious beetles. The Heart of Woe also explodes if the wearer is killed, causing a great deal of damage to anyone in range.
    • And Dwarfs have the option to put selfdestruct runes on their war machines.
    • An orc and goblins war machine specifically fires goblins at the enemy, goblins line up for the chance to go out in a blaze of glory as living ammunition. Night Gobbins too have their fanatics, almost certainly a death sentence but nothing is more inspiring and magnificent than a tiny goblin whirling a huge ball and chain around its head.
    • There's also a special Orcish amulet that explodes when the bearer dies. However, it's usually given to goblins, whose default reaction is "Dat wuz nice o' da boss ter give me dis shiny fing, but why's 'e sendin' me orf alone on dis wolf?"
      • This would be the heart of woe - the orc's magic item section includes several items looted from other armies, though only one is called by its proper name.
  • More complex versions of the party game Mafia (as well as its variations, like Werewolf) will often include a "killing role" character, such as Hunter or Rambo. Rules for these characters vary, but they're usual role is to take a set number of other players down with them when they're killed.
  • Dragon-Bloods in Exalted have access to a series of Charms with the Martyr keyword, which become significantly more terrifying when they're used by a dying man, many of which are combat effects. The most notorious is the Essence 7 elemental nuke called As In The Beginning, so a dying DB gets to take entire battlefields with him.
  • An optional rule in Earthdawn allows players to do a "dying act." The character is allowed to spend all of their karma dice on a single roll, after which he or she is dead beyond the reach of any resurrection magic. If the roll in question is a damage roll, it becomes this trope.

Theatre[edit | hide]

  • Camille Saint-Saëns's opera Samson et Dalila ends the same way as the Biblical legend, with Samson bringing down the temple on himself and the entire Philistine cast.


Video Games[edit | hide]

  • The Harkonnen Devastator in Dune II is a large nuclear powered tank which can be ordered to self destruct, potentially taking out nearby enemies. It will also do so automatically once critically damaged.
  • Both players and Grunts in Halo will do this. The Grunts light up two plasma grenades and then run at you. You need to kill them before they get to you, as they will not explode unless they get near you. In Halo 3's matchmaking, people who get stuck will try this, and some even stick themselves if there is a large enough group for it to be worthwile and in the situation bullets are too slow.
    • In Halo 3, the Master Chief does this in order to kill the Gravemind.
      • Halo: Reach has a heroic version in the form of Emile, who after being stabbed from behind by an Elite Zealot whips out his knife and jams it in the Elite's throat, taking the Elite down with him.
        • "I'm ready! HOW BOUT YOU!" is a great example of what one might say on a Taking You With Me or on The Last Dance
        • Noble Six has a similar experience. During his/her Last Stand on Reach, you fight against a small army of Covenant forces; when you finally fail, he/she kills at least half of the dozen or so Elites that finally bring him down.
      • Carter also deserves a mention. After being shot down, he deliberately aims his ship into a Covenant mobile assault platform. This tactic is also present in Halo Wars for the Covenant Banshees.
        • Which may be a Shout-Out to the aforementioned Arvel Crynyd's death.
      • There's also an easy to miss special case near the ending. After Doctor Halsey hands them the package with the vital data she discovered, that could save humanity and destroy the Covenant, Carter orders Jun to escort her to saftey. Halsey says that she does not need an escort, to which Carter only replies by reminding Jun that "nothing must fall into enemy hands".
  • Every time you kill any enemy in (recent) Mechwarrior games, their fusion reactor goes nuclear and does extreme damage to anything near it. Cue players running at each other when their armor is gone, to try and kill the other player when they go nuclear. Taken Up to Eleven in the Crysis mod Mechwarrior Living Legends where the explosion from a damaged reactor is the size of a small nuke, though whether a destroyed 'Mech goes boom largely random.
  • Andross in Star FOX 64. Word for word. But only if you approach Venom from the hard direction - approaching it from the easy one just means he dies when you defeat him (although you still escape his exploding lair in a cutscene, now because he's a Load-Bearing Boss rather than trying to kill you in a last act of spite), and not in his true form to boot.
  • Giacimo's Heroic Sacrifice in the climactic cutscene of the Rise of Legends campaign is preceded by the Cuotl boss trying to drag him into a random bottomless pit with him.
  • It's possible in Super Smash Bros.. Brawl with any character—just grab and execute a leap down a Bottomless Pit
    • Galeom also does this to Lucas and Pokémon Trainer after their fight, trying to take them all out in a self-destruction form of a Subspace Bomb.
    • The Kirbycide technique is probably the most notable example, being included in Super Smash Bros. Melee and its sequel. Skilled Kirby players can pull this off in such a way that their opponent falls helplessly to the blast line, with Kirby floating upward to avoid the same fate.
    • The list goes on and on... Bowser and Ganondorf can both do this with their side-specials, Kirby can inhale an enemy and jump off the edge OR use his up-special, and any character can pull off an epic KO (such as Captain Falcon's famous Sacred Combo) which is impossible to recover from.
  • The climax of The Getaway centers around this after the Big Bad has a Villainous Breakdown.
  • Final Fantasy franchise in general have monsters with the "Self Destruct" ability, Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
    • High level Behemoth-type monsters tend to have final attacks involving Comet or Meteor spells, meaning that when you kill them, you had better have enough health to survive or its game-over anyways.
    • Final Fantasy VII even had the "Final Attack" materia that cast whatever spell it was linked too when that character hit 0 hp. It could be used to immediately revive them (and any other fallen allies) with the right materia combo, but it could also be used to launch any of dozens of devastating attacks to invoke this trope.
  • In Final Fantasy IV, Tellah's short battle against Golbez, which he tops off with Meteor despite Cecil's and Yang's objections. Tellah dies while Golbez walks away.
    • Two Elemental Fiends do this. Scarmiglione comes back from the dead for a second (and harder) round of the boss battle. Cagnazzo uses his last power in attempt to squish you to death by trapping you in a small room with moving walls.
  • In Final Fantasy IX, when you win the battle against Kuja he casts Ultima to kill off your party, but that leaves him drained off and almost dead—something he probably knows. He didn't succeed, but hey, it's the thought that counts.
    • Not to mention that Kuja's ultimate motivation is that, having discovered that his lifespan is limited and he's going to die soon, he decides to take two whole worlds with him and erase all of existence if he can last long enough.
    • Several other enemies in the Final Fantasy series have a tradition of casting that one last spell or ability just before they expire. The Tyrannosaurs and the Magi-Master in Final Fantasy VI also cast Ultima when they're defeated.
      • There's also this one monster called Humbaba in X-2, which is blocking off the Thunder Plains for the concert or trying to eat Cid or something, I forget. Anyway, upon killing it, it got off a Meteor spell and flattened everyone except the Dark Knight.
      • This is the signature ability of the Bomb-class enemies (Bombs, Grenades, Balloons, et al.) They tend to Self-Destruct when damaged, usually with enough force to kill at least one party member. In recent entries, each physical strike that connects with them will cause them to swell up, and swell up, and swell up, until they're gigantic and on the verge of bursting violently, forcing you to kill them in as few hits as possible or use magic.
    • One notable example is Gilgamesh from Final Fantasy V, the one man Goldfish Poop Gang (with awesome theme music) who redeems himself of both villainy and goofiness by switching sides and self-destructing to take out the second to last boss, Necrophobe, if you take too long in your fight with him.
    • Zack charges at an entire army and takes most of them down before being shot to death in Crisis Core.
    • This is also the way Cloud kills Sephiroth the first time, at least in Crisis Core—specifically, he grabs the sword sticking through him, shoves it further to get a good grip, and throws its wielder into the reactor by it. Sephiroth is too startled to let go.
    • From Final Fantasy XII, a fatally-wounded Vayne is so poisoned with the power of his own Nethicite that he laments not being able to fulfill Venat's goals. Unwilling to let him suffer alone, after all they've been through, Venat surrenders its power to Vayne: even if he can't realize his ultimate ambition anymore, he will inflict as much suffering as possible on those responsible.
    • Its implied that Kefka intended to do this in the ending of Final Fantasy VI with Terra Branford, most specifically, after he was defeated, given that he had absorbed the essence of magic and killing him would make Espers cease to exist, which would have included those with Esper heritage. That's also not getting into Kefka's tower threatening to collapse on the Returners as they escape.
  • In Kingdom Hearts II, Axel does this when he, Sora, Donald and Goofy are about to get swamped by Nobodies.
  • This is the entire point of the Destiny Bond, Self-Destruct and Explosion moves in the Pokémon games.
    • Fittingly, Self-Destruct and Explosion are the two most powerful attacks in the game, and that's before you factor in that, before the moves were nerfed in Pokémon Black and White, they halved the target's defense.
    • The entire practice of this type of move in random encounters is lampshaded and justified in this Adventurers! comic.
      • Oddly plausible, for a JRPG trope. Consider the real-world frogs coated in poison that would only hurt a predator that's already snacked on one...
    • Also, the ability Aftermath works like this.
    • It's also the point of the attack Perish Song, which KOs all Pokemon on the field in exactly three turns. Useful if used with a move or ability to stop the opponent Pokémon from switching out/running from battle. Annoying when it's used by a wild Pokémon you're trying to catch.
    • Black and White added a move called Final Gambit., which hits the user and the target for an amount of damage equal to the HP the user has left. Amusingly, it can be used by Shedinja, which is a One-Hit-Point Wonder.
  • At the end of Advance Wars 2: Black Hole Rising, Big Bad Sturm tries to pull this on the heroes. His second-in-command, Hawke, not wanting to die with his boss, shoots him before he can activate his doomsday device.
  • Happens as a Crowning Moment of Awesome in Odin Sphere. When the dragon Belial gets mortally wounded, it frees him from Urzur's control long enough to devour him.
  • Enemies in Ninja Gaiden II who lose their legs to Ryu will attempt to crawl up, grab Ryu and pull out an explosive to blow themselves up with.
  • In Mega Man Battle Network 3, after you beat Flashman, he uses the "Shining Browser Crusher" on Mega Man. Sometime in the next chapter, Mega Man's connection to his Operator is suddenly cut by the delayed effects of the attack, robbing you of your ability to leave the Net immediately and limiting you to the pathetic default weapon. Ironically, you might be attacked by Flashman's stronger, Random Encounter ghost on your way back to the exit point while in this weakened state.
    • Well actually, you would have to be stupid to go down the dead end path that he is on, when this happens.
    • Though at the end of the game you find a suspiciously not-dead Flashman (along with a few other "dead" navis) just in time for the Boss Rush.
  • After defeating Sigma in Mega Man X 3, he becomes his true form and tries to take over your body while lava is flooding the place.
    • Also, in Mega Man X 5, after you defeat his final form, he tries to take Zero down with him, which he does, in a way.
  • Phantom does the Kaizo Trap variation the second time you defeat him in Mega Man Zero, radiating little explosion bubbles about halfway across the screen in both directions. It does moderate damage, but as long as you're attentive the bubbles can be jumped. It also won't hit you if he's killed in a corner and you stand on the opposite side. Copy X does the same thing (in the same level, no less), only his version is scripted for you to escape automatically.
    • At the end of the fourth game, Dr. Weil, having failed to destroy the refugee settlement Area Zero with his orbital laser cannon, decides to use it for a Colony Drop instead, which requires him to remain on the ark personally. Zero, in turn, remains on board to defeat Dr. Weil and detonate the ark before impact, knowing he would not be able to escape.
  • After defeating the Egg Viper in Sonic Adventure, the player is given a few seconds' warning by Tikal before it makes one last attempt to blow up the player in a fiery kamikaze.
    • Needless to say that if you survive, Dr. Eggman (Or Robotnik), who was controlling the machine, apparently survives the attack. Then again, in the Genesis-era and Advance-style games, he showed signs of being burned, and subsequently, somehow, healed as he flies away to the next stage.
  • The final battle between Martin and Dagon in Oblivion could be considered this, although neither really dies—Dagon is only sent back to his own realm, and Martin inexplicably turns himself into a statue.
    • Clarification: Martin, as the last Imperial descendant of Emperor Talos, allows the Dragon-God Akatosh to possess his body. Akatosh then kicks the titanic butt of Merunes Dagon. Martin doesn't survive the process and his dragon-size/shaped remains are left as an eternal statue... right in the courtyard of the Imperial Temple to Akatosh.
    • Also, the Shambles enemy from The Shivering Isles expansion, which upon defeat releases a burst of frost magic in an attempt to kill the player.
  • In The House of the Dead 4, James Taylor defeats The World by setting his PDA to self-destruct and throwing it up at The World, killing both of them.
  • Total Annihilation uses this to great extent. Every single thing in the game, buildings and units both, can self-destruct with a simple key command, allowing the player to surrender in epic form by causing his entire armada to explode. Exploding units also deal damage in a radius whenever they self-destruct or are destroyed-an exploding Commander can clear half a screen.
    • One particular third party unit had more hit points than the game had set for its Self Destruct self-damage. This unit was capable of Taking You with Me TWICE before it actually died.
    • Also the whole point of the first expansion's campaign in which the Core reveals that their plan if they were to lose the great war was to reach an alien artifact, and convert it into an implosion bomb that would destroy the galaxy
    • Both sides also had suicide bomber K-bots (Giant Mecha, but relatively small compared to most units in the game). This is their only form of attack, naturally.
  • Most bosses in Dracula X do this, although their efforts aren't usually instantly lethal unless you have little HP remaining to begin with and aren't sure how to dodge their final attack.
  • Played straight in a Legend of Dragoon flashback. Kanzas confronts an enormous Virage and latches himself on to his head with the quote "Not bad! I'm taking you with me!" Before blowing himself up, and taking the Virage, and a good chunk of a Wingly city with him.
    • Precedes two other examples of this trope by SECONDS, in which Shirley dies to kill the Virage that killed Belzac, and Melbu Frahma petrifies Zieg as he "dies."
    • Also is used by Melbu Frahma AGAIN at the end of the game, where he self destructs to try and kill your party. This is the first time in the game that it actually fails (but STILL manages to kill Rose and the resurrected Zieg)
      • Although Rose and Zieg were intending to die there.
  • In the Mother series, some enemies will self-destruct upon defeat and deal usually-lethal amounts of damage. However, damage works differently in this series; a character's HP, when reduced, slowly drops down instead of instantly taking up its new value, so once the enemy self-destructs, it's a race to go through the remaining lines of text and finish the battle.
  • Some enemies in Personas 3 and 4 can do this with Last Resort. Most of the time it only takes off a large chunk of your health and there's nothing a little healing won't cure.
  • Gears of War 2 - in the multiplayer, if you have your grenades equipped, and you are downed - by pulling the right trigger you can try to take them with you. Great for punks who insist on performing an execution or want a body shield... or an objective. Unfortunately rather unavoidable if a person holding a grenade was downed in a match using Execution rules (downed players may stand back up after some time if not finished off in close-range, though may only stand up again twice).
  • Call of Duty 4 does it twice; once with the aptly-named Martyrdom perk, and twice with the Misery Loves Company challenge, which requires that you kill yourself and an enemy by cooking a grenade and keeping hold of it until it detonates.
  • Eternal Darkness reveals at the end of the game that your three playthroughs, each against a different Cosmic Horror, have allowed Mantorok to drag all three of the elder gods it guards against into a temporal web that lets it destroy all three of them. Mantorok is already dying - in each timeline, Pious Augustus performs a lethal ritual on it - but it's managed to take out all the gods it was supposed to keep in check as it dies.
  • In StarCraft, the Zerg love this trope so much, they evolved the Scourges and the Infested Terrans, which are basically suicide bombers. "Sacrifice me" indeed.
    • And in the end of the first installment Tassadar crashes his ship on Overmaind, finishing it off - in a manner that probably wouldn't make it to shelves after 9/11...or would it?
  • City of Heroes offers an Expansion Pack which includes the ability for any character to obtain a self-destruction power. Although intended to be used as this trope or a Suicide Attack, in game it is more frequently used as a kind of Rocket Jump in order to quickly travel across the zone (to the hospital) or to the character's supergroup base.
  • The King of Fighters has a number of bosses who try this.
    • Rugal LOVES to pull this off and has attempted it at least 3 times: Once in 94, once in 98 and again in 2002 Unlimited Match
    • in 2000, Zero attempts to blow up his hideout (Where you are) with his Zero Cannon. Shame it got busted earlier.
    • 2001 has Igniz combine this trope with Colony Drop. The Colony Drop part fails miserably, but your allies are saved by an unknown group.
  • The end of the losing mission path in Wing Commander III features this, courtesy of Eisen demonstrating that Ramming Always Works with the TCS Victory.
    • A rather important plot point of the second Wing Commander game, Mariko Tanaka's decade long lost fiance is held hostage on a space station. After her bomber is crippled take a wild guess at what the Japanese pilot does.
  • Freeware game An Untitled Story has the final boss do this. In this final phase of the battle, instead of doing damage to him like every other boss of the game and every form of the boss before this, you simply have to survive his bullet and laser patterns for an arbitrary time limit (1 minute 15 seconds on Normal). Strangely enough, the main character could just as well do a heroic sacrifice and still succeed, but that would imply that he doesn't hook up with the pink female bird on the ending screen. Not to mention that you can't save after you beat the final boss.
  • Devil May Cry 1 and 4 have the Shadows and the Blitzes, respectively (going by designer notes, the latter was modeled intentionally on the former, and it shows). Once you hurt a Shadow enough, it turns red and uses its last few seconds of life in an attempt to do this to you. And a Blitz is almost the same way. That, plus how powerful both of these enemies were puts them somewhere between Demonic Spiders and That One Boss (That One Miniboss, maybe?)
    • Though for skilled enough players with built-up characters, "Shadow hunting" could become something like a fun hobby in the original Devil May Cry.
  • In some versions of Nethack, the player can "apply" a magic wand to break it. This results in an area-effect magic blast that inflicts the wand's effect on a 3x3 area centered on the player. Now, to apply this Wand of Death... (It is possible to survive the blast, though. At least if you have a cloak of magic resistance.)
  • Fawful attempts this in Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story. Ironically, his self-destruct ended up saving everyone by blasting them out of Bowser's belly.
    • The Dark Star plays this straight, with it's final attack being a black hole/vortex that Mario and Luigi have to quickly run from to dodge (does about 500 odd damage if they get sucked into it).
  • The state of Manhattan in Prototype was caused prior to the events of the game by the real Alex Mercer. When Blackwatch cornered him in Penn Station, he released the Blacklight virus into the busiest transit station in the U.S. before being shot to death. Since he designed that particular strain of Blacklight, he knew full well what would happen—and apparently considered his own sister (who lives in the city) an acceptable loss. It really says something about a guy when the Lovecraftian, man-eating viral mutant that replaces him is still not as much of a dick as the original.
    • Actually, considering the the Blacklight Virus was engineered specifically to be ten times deadlier than the original Redlight Virus, which was deadly enough on its own to warrant the annihilation of an entire city, and made that way by by the real Alex Mercer himself, this might be a case of an attempt at Taking The Species With Me, or at least the United States or a good chunk of North America. After all, there was no guarantee that Blackwatch/GENTEK would be able to contain the outbreak, something Dr. Mercer had to have guessed; in fact, Dr. Mercer likely had no idea of Blackwatch's true nature, meaning that the man could have been under the belief that it would have been nigh-impossible for them to contain a public outbreak before such an infectious virus spread like wildfire. It's not every day an ordinary, non-powered, essentially no-name guy puts the entire planet at risk.
  • The unique monsters in Diablo II that are Cold and/or Fire Enchanted. Nasty cold nova and fire+physical damage effect upon monster death.
    • Undead Fetishes. One of the game's more infamous Demonic Spiders that reward you with a face full of shrapnel if they die in close proximity to you.
    • Enforced with the Suicide Minions of Act 5.
    • Also, some Uniques have a trait that makes them explode upon dying, and some undead emit a cloud of poison when downed.
  • Seen in the end of Golden Sun, as the final bosses merge together after defeated into a giant dragon, even though they know that they'll be unable to live for a long time after the battle due to the massive amount of energy.
  • Throughout the Metroid Prime trilogy, Space Pirates with jetpacks will kamikaze into you upon defeat. Complete with a scream of agony.
  • In Star Control II, Shofixti's preferred weapon is a self-destruct switch (promptly called Glory Device). Moreover, when faced with overwhelming odds, they turned their own star into supernova just to obliterate a part of enemy armada.
  • Sonic Rush Series had Eggman/Eggman Nega's giant robot. Upon reducing it to its last hit point, Eggman/Nega would ram the robot's shoulder spikes into the stage. If you don't hit him quickly enough after he hits the stage a third time, the stage falls apart, leading you to fall to your death. Not sure if the spikes themselves can kill, but it's a possibility.
    • In the sequel, Captain whisker (piloting the last giant machine of doom)will fire two lasers on both sides that slowly close in on you. This is clearly overpowering the machine (what with it exploding and being forced to lower itself). The lasers are impossible to dodge, and you have to hit the weak point when it's close enough to not get killed in the process. Obviously, it's debatable if Captain whiskers would of survived if he succeeded, but the machine probably would of blown up anyways.
  • Team Fortress 2 gives the Soldier a suicidal grenade taunt that is apparently meant to evoke this, although like all fatal taunts it is unlikely to actually kill anyone unless you sneak up on them first, in which case you might as well just shoot them. It occasionally works—and evokes the trope more directly—during humiliation, though, if it's activated just before the victors rush in for their free kills.
    • Also a vital part of the Pyro—you even get an achievement for causing an enemy to burn to death after you yourself are already waiting to respawn. If you manage to ignite a large group of enemies before you die and no enemy Medics are present, expect most of them to go down pretty soon after you die if there are few medpacks in the area. Assuming you did a fair amount of damage to them before getting killed, that is.
  • The third boss of the Light Gun arcade shooter Razing Storm is a Spider Tank that constantly pesters you throughout the level. When finally defeated, it fires out a TON of missiles into the air. The missiles ain't for you- rather, they're for the skyscraper connector you're precariously standing on in midair. If you fail to shoot enough of them down in time, your platform goes bye bye, and you and your squad fall to your deaths.
  • In Dragon Quest II, the final spell learned by the Prince of Cannock is called Sacrifice, which instantly kills both him and the entire enemy party with a 100% success rate. Since he's the only party member with a revive spell, it's mostly a last resort. Unfortunately, there are also enemies who know this spell, and it works just as well for them. Instant, unavoidable, Total Party Kill from a Random Encounter = Nintendo Hard.
  • There are many examples of this in Resident Evil 4—however, many are involuntary. For instance, El Gigante will crush you as he falls over dead if you get too close, and Del Lago's corpse will drag you to the bottom of the lake via a rope that gets wrapped around your leg unless you act fast. A genuine example would be from the picture at the top of the page: standing around and watching an El Gigante take a lava bath, up close, is a BAD idea.
    • The most frequent examples are arguably the Ganados. Blowing someone's head clean off is an instant kill in most things (video game and real life), but sometimes a Ganado who gets that treatment will sprout a Plaga from his/her shoulder, and sometimes one that can gank you in one hit if you stand around going "what the fu..." for too long.
  • In Resident Evil 5, Wesker says this to Chris and Sheva as they make a three human chain dangling out the back of an assault bomber. It does him little good, because Sheva then shoots him in the face. Too bad he can heal.
    • He also does it again when he falls into a lava pit, while mutating from Uroboros. He uses his Uroboros arms to pull the anti-bioterrorism team's chopper in close with the obvious intention of forcing them into a lavabath with him. Chris and Sheva managed to finish him off with two RPG-7s to the head before he could succeed.
    • The ending of DLC, Lost in Nightmares, has Jill doing this to Wesker. Sadly, it fails.
  • Sho Minamimoto of The World Ends With You uses a self-destruct technique upon defeat. It's called something like "Level i Flare," with i being an imaginary number, meaning the blast obliterates everything in proximity. The trigger? Reciting pi. One hundred and fifty digits of it.
  • Fallout In the first game, upon death the Master self destructs and activates a nuclear bomb. Frank Horrigan in the second game attempts to stall the player from escaping an oil rig about to go down in a nuclear explosion.
    • And in Fallout: New Vegas, a delayed dentonation in the form of a bloodbath that engulfs New Vegas if Caesar dies and his successor rules...
  • Knights of the Old Republic: Calo Nord tried this unsuccessfully, in a Shout-Out to the scene in Return of the Jedi with Bouush's thermal detonator.
  • Another one from BioWare was Sagacious Zu making his Heroic Sacrifice against Death's Hand in Jade Empire, using the pillars supporting the room to make the roof collapse on both of them while buying the Player Character and companion time to escape.
  • In Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey, destroying the physical body of Mem Aleph reduces her to an embryonic, so-called "empty" state, in which she's nothing but raw, naked power. But since she can't take control of the Schwarzwelt in this form, nor create a new future for herself and the Schwarzwelt's demons, she turns on you and exhausts all that power into destroying you before vanishing.
  • In Free Space, that kind of stuff happens alot, especially with capital ships. In a general way, they tend to explode in a mega-blast when dying - which can be considered as a way to take the fighters/bombers down.
    • Canonically, the Colossus. It takes down the Sathanas then get ambushed by a second - and try to take it down as almost all hope of survival is lost. Seems more like a Last Stand though.
    • In "Feint, Parry, Ripost!" - Admiral Koth, the NTD Repulse commanding officer, Attempts to crash his ship into the Colossus. "I have no intention of escaping, Colossus, nor will I surrender. Even if I send my crew to hell with you, this monstruosity will be destroyed! [...] The tyranny of your regime is finished! Admiral Koth Out!"
    • During Free Space 1, the Hammer of Light tend to kamikaze countless times, either fighters or capital ships. Not like this had any effect most of times.
    • In Blue Planet War In Heaven - the opening cutscene - the UEFg Nelson orders other ships to clear a path to one of the enemy capital ships, in order to ram it. Note that this is part of You Shall Not Pass - as they have to defend Artemis Station while evacuated.
      • Another variation, in the last mission, Delenda Est. In the end, the UEFg Yangtze get hit badly and cannot withdraw. They then turn back and attack from front.... obviously getting destroyed in a few seconds.
  • Several creatures in World of Warcraft do this. The batriders in Zul'Gurub would explode when at low health, requiring anyone near them to back away or suffer massive damage. There's a specific variety of undead horror in Icecrown Citadel and the Pit of Saron that channel a "blight bomb" when at low health, and players must kill them before they finish casting. There are also a number of bosses that drop clouds of poisonous gas on death, causing careless players to kill themselves looting it.
    • Vanessa VanCleef does this at the end of Heroic Deadmines, utterng this phrase in the process. In the original version of the encounter, she would detonate one last set of explosives, forcing players to swing on ropes away from it, but a later patch had her detonating explosives on herself, forcing players to walk away from her.
  • In Assassin's Creed 2, Checco Orsi stabs Ezio in the stomach when he is fatally wounded by the latter.
  • Call of Duty Black Ops has a villain version. After you finally find and mortally wound Kravchenko, he reveals that he is wearing a suicide grenade belt and pulls the pin, intending to take you down with him. Woods then makes a Heroic Sacrifice and tackles Kravchecko through a window just before the grenades go off, saving Mason.
  • Done twice in a row by Daos at the end of Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals; first using the last of the energy of the Four Man Band bad guy squad to attempt to destroy the world, then by using the last of his own enmity to crash the floating island in which the last battle takes place on Maxim and Selan's hometown. Made even more powerful in the ending in that no one except Maxim knew about the second effort, and he dies in the process knowing no one ever would. Also accompanied by possibly the best music in the game.
  • Yoshimitsu from the Soul Calibur series have some unblockable suicide moves that deal a lot of damage if he hits his opponent with one of these moves. The emphasis is on "if", however, as most of them have short reach. BTW, Yoshimitsu himself suffers about just as much damage from executing these moves, whether they connect with his opponent or not.
  • Metal Gear has this trope a few times.
    • In the original Metal Gear, Big Boss utters these words when he learns that his plans failed just before fighting Snake.
    • In Portable Ops, Cunningham utters these words shortly after he was defeated by Big Boss (and what he means by that is using the Soviet-made Davy Crockett to destroy Big Boss and pretty much the entire silo, if not the entire peninsula.)
    • Peace Walker also has one: The sphere like device on Peace Walker was a hydrogen bomb whose explosive yield surpasses even that of the Tsar Bomba (which was the largest Nuclear Bomb ever built). The reason why it has it is so that, if its mission requires it to go into a country, it can waltz in and blow the country away to kingdom come.
      • Kazuhira Miller, in the same game, almost did this to Big Boss when his mercenary unit was wiped out by Big Boss's Militaires Sans Frontieres, by drawing Big Boss close and intending to blow himself and Big Boss up by using a grenade concealed in his hand, but Big Boss quickly disarmed him before he could remove the pin, and instead suggested he join the Militaires Sans Frontieres.
  • One interpretation for the finale of Rule of Rose focuses on this trope quite tragically: after losing everything to her own jealousy, Wendy brings the serial killer Stray Dog to the orphanage to kill everybody, herself included. She's the closest thing the game has for a villain and the act is incredibly spiteful and selfish, but somehow you still end up feeling sorry for her.
  • Kirby 64 The Crystal Shards: Bomb + Rock results in a stick of dynamite that hurts Kirby if he doesn't cover himself with his helmet.
    • Snow + Bomb turns Kirby into a walking snowman suicide bomber (though in that case, the explosion doesn't hurt Kirby).
  • In Dawn of War: Dark Crusade, a lot of the races are notoriously poor losers when you beat their home province. The Orks spring a massive series of explosions all over their base. The Imperial Guard overload the core of the weapon they were defending. The Space Marines shoot their own home base from orbit, and (though the bomb was your idea) the bomb that collapses the Necrons' home base also kills every one of your units that was deployed... except your commander, of course. Frankly, given all the do-or-die orders that get issued in this universe, it's probably simpler to list aversions.
    • Shown in Dawn of War II with a skill on Dreadnought Thule that blows it up violently whenever it gets incapacitated. Also using Cyrus' Proximity Mines without the skill that lets him plant bombs without breaking infiltration. In fact, any time a friend-or-foe indiscriminate area of effect attack is used anywhere near your own units.
    • If Jonah Orion is the traitor in Chaos Rising, the daemon possessing Jonah will try to repair his body, but Jonah makes one last ditch effort to stop the daemon from healing him.
  • Ace Combat X - Skies of Deception: after you finish attacking the flying fortress "Gleipnir", destroying it's air-to-air weaponry, the Gleipnir's captain flips the plane upside down to try and use it's air-to ground weaponry, telling the crew trying to physically restrain him "we're gonna die anyway!" Then when you destroy the Shock Cannon, he steers it into Santa Elva, a civilian city, while Mission Control pleads with him not to.

Captain: I will deliver one final blow to the enemy, as commander of the Gleipnir. AM I TO BE DENIED EVEN THAT?!!!

  • RuneScape has a variation with the Retribution prayer: If you have it active and are killed, you deal damage to all surrounding enemies (assuming there are any).
    • There are also some monsters in the Void Knights minigame whose entire gimmick is to walk up to the doors and self-destruct at them.
  • Brink has this as a gameplay mechanic. Operatives can use a bomb inside their heads, called a Cortex Bomb, to blow themselves up when they are incapacitated.
  • The Saga of Ryzom has a group of creatures called Yelks, which are like giant turtles with mushrooms for shells. If you kill one, it will release noxious vapours for a few seconds that do quite a bit of damage, so it's recommended that you kill them at range and wait a while to loot the corpse.
  • Done by Captain Foster in Starlancer when the Reliant is cornered by the Coalition forces and is heavily damaged. After launching the fighters and evacuating the crew, Foster sets a collision course for the enemy flagship and engages full burn. The Coalition ship tries to get out of the way and shoot down the Reliant, but Foster still manages to hit it, taking out his rival in the process.
  • Impossible Mission II has Suicide Bots, who leap into Bottomless Pits with their victim.
  • In Mortal Kombat 9, Nightwolf makes a last stand against Sindel, killing them both.
    • In a normal versus match that has nothing to do with the story, Cyber Zub-Zero's rather unique initial fatality involves him activating some kind of self-destruct mechanism on his arm, and then leaping onto his dazed opponent and exploding, with both him and his opponent immediately exploding into fragments of ice. He doesn't really need to do this, though, since you have to win the match completely to have the opportunity to do it at all, and there's no reason whatsoever at that point for him to self-destruct. But whether you do it or not, it still counts as a win.
  • Endtrails in Turok 2 blow themselves up when critically injured.
  • Killian in Perfect Dark Zero attempts to crash his gunship into you after you defeat him.
  • In Deus Ex Human Revolution, this is how the boss fight against Barrett ends - he pulls the pins on the grenades still strapped to his body while trying to pull Jensen close enough to take him out too.
    • This is also an option to end the game. Instead of telling the world the truth (well, one of them) about the events of the game, you can opt to kill all the leaders of involved parties, including yourself, and leave the rest of the world to figure out everything for themselves.
  • The Safe Ending in Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors features Snake taking SIX bullets from Ace while the incinerator they are trapped in is about to burn them all to death. He STILL has enough strength to keep Ace inside while the others get away...
  • During Cornelius' epilogue in Odin Sphere, the Pooka prince's blade inflicts mortal injuries to the dragon Belial; releasing him from Urzur's control was a side-effect. When Urzur attempts to take control of the situation, Belial acts in full defiance before carrying him to the Netherworld... in his mouth.
  • There was a cut scene in the PS 1 game The Legend of Dragoon showing the final moments of first great war between the humans and winglies. One of the few combatants remaining is the first Thunder Dragoon, who got himself impaled by a flying Virage (the winglies' version of dragons) His reaction? "Not bad, but I'm taking you with me!" before self destructing.
  • This trope works great against Tentaculats in X-COM: Terror From The Deep. Just make sure that all your soldiers always carry two primed grenades in their inventory. If a Tentaculat turns one of your soldiers into a zombie, he will drop the grenades which will then immediately go off. The first grenade kills the attacking Tentaculat and the second one takes out the new Tentaculat that bursts out of the zombified soldier.
  • Conversed in Jak X: Combat Racing. During a TV interview Jak is asked if the death threats he's receiving bother him. He replies that he's probably dead already, "But that doesn't mean I can't take a few scumbags with me."
  • In the N64 game The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Ganondorf does this to you: once you defeat him at the top of his castle, he attempts to use the last of his strength to destroy the castle and crush you and Princess Zelda under it. All three of you, including Ganondorf, survive.
  • In League of Legends Yorick, Karthas, and Kog'maw have abilities that lend themselves to this. Yorick's will temporarily revive a champion if they die, allowing them a chance to revenge themselves on their killer (or someone else.) Karthas remains able to cast spells in place for a few seconds after he dies, allowing him to blast nearby enemies, or channel his ultimate without risk of interruption to damage all enemy champions. Kog'maw's allows him to keep living for a few seconds after he dies and increases his movement speed, so he can get close enough to enemies before he explodes for massive damage.
  • In Evolva, Flame Parasites catch fire, and explode after a few seconds, when they're killed.
  • Taqu'il jumps into the mouth of the giant ant baby while holding a bomb in a possible Shout-Out to either Justice League: The New Frontier or Jurassic Park. the bomb doesn't go off.

Killface: We're gonna die!
Taqu'il: No, fuck that! I got this!
nothing happens
Killface: What do you think his overall plan was?

    • Rila detonates a bomb after a Banshee stabs her in the stomach.
    • Shepard in the Red Destroy Ending.
      • Although if you've earned a high enough EMS score, Shepard is shown to taking a breath in the rubble.
  • A guide book for Doom II noted that a rocket launcher should only be used in close quarters if it was "your last great act of defiance".
  • In Dragon Age, this is revealed to be the only way the Grey Wardens can defeat an Archdemon. If slain by anyone else, it will simply possess the nearest soulless Darkspawn in the vicinity, rendering it effectively immortal. Being slain by a Grey Warden on the other hand, will force it to possess them instead, which because of their already present soul, ends up destroying them both.
    • Although Morrigan offers the Warden a way to avert this.

Visual Novels[edit | hide]

  • Fate Stay Night:
    • The final choice you make in Unlimited Blade Works route is as follows: After beating the Big Bad up, a sphere of nothingness begins to swallow him up. He throws out a chain and grabs Shirou; the choices are "try and break free" or "take him down with me". Picking the second one leads to a Bad End. Of course, this choice is so obviously dumb that once the Tiger Dojo starts up, it begins with Taiga literally beating the crap out of a Super-Deformed Shirou. They then use it to hint towards a way to get the Good End of the route, due to them likely assuming that since the right decision is so obvious that the only reasons someone would do the wrong is is curiosity after beating the route.
    • Also in Unlimited Blade Works, Lancer kills Kotomine, stabs Shinji, frees Rin and sets fire to the castle even after being stabbed by Gae Bolg. Justified, because one of his abilities is called Battle Continuation; it allows the user to continue fighting even at the verge of death.
    • Heavens Feel has one too in Shirou's fight with Saber Alter, if you don't bring Rider along. Shirou kills himself to stop her, to let Tohsaka proceed without interference. Taiga and Ilya in the Dojo are a bit troubled because they can't really call it a bad end due to beating Saber in a one on one fight, which is pretty damn badass.
    • And in the manual on The Dead Apostle Ancestors, El Nahat seems to have this as his shtick. Blowing himself up to kill an enemy. The Church has captured him and turned his stomach into a weapon.
  • Maji De Watashi Ni Koi Shinasai has Cookie, the robot, who gets ensnared in several ropes against class S in the Kawakami War. As a last ditch move, he releases his remaining energy to shock the students holding the ropes, then shuts down.


Web Comics[edit | hide]


Web Original[edit | hide]

  • Kate Modern: Precious Blood: "If it's the end for me, I hope you realise I'm the kind of vindictive bastard that's gonna take as many people with him as I can."
  • The Angry Video Game Nerd at the end of his Crazy Castle review. Woody Woodpecker intends to blow the Nerd up with a bomb, but the Nerd grabs him and holds him in place.
    • "I don't give a fuck, I'm taking you with me! So you like to play with bombs, huh? Well, BOMBS AWAY YOU WOODY BUNNY FUCKING PECKER PIECE OF SHIT!"
  • Premier Jacade in Darwin's Soldiers: Card of Ten blows up Planet Gaman and everyone on it (including himself) to stop the rebels from taking power from him.
  • Melina Frost from Survival of the Fittest kills Beth Vandelinder this way. After the latter stabbed another almost fatally and left her to die in quicksand, the former grabbed hold of her hair in her last act and dragged Beth under with her, killing them both.
  • Parodied in Kickassia, when The Nostalgia Critic makes clear early on that if the others try to overthrow him, he'll blow up Kickassia and everyone in it (including himself) with twenty tons of dynamite, then later on tries to do just that. Pity that The Cinema Snob disconnected the dynamite when he got exiled.
  • In the finale of Red vs. Blue: Revelation, as the Meta is being dragged to his death by a Warthog jeep over a cliff, he grabs Grif along the way down. Sarge starts delivering a eulogy even after Tucker suggests that maybe Grif caught a branch on the way down. He did.
  • In Spoony's review of the failed 70s Captain America (comics) pilot, he sent a copy to The Nostalgia Critic (who hanged himself) and invited Linkara on the show just to waste his time.

"If I have to suffer, I'm taking every one of you bastards with me."

  • The character Riot Breaker in The Guildhall D&D podcast. Notably, he's used this strategy twice, somehow managing to survive both attempts. The first time was against a robotic dragon that, if not for his (attempted) Heroic Sacrifice would have killed the party almost definitely. The second time, a dawning realization of just how badly he'd messed up pushed him beyond the Despair Event Horizon, and as a result he intended to drag the villain into the murky depths with him.
  • In Look to the West, Fox does this to Liseiux.
  • Lord Slug tells Goku this in Lord Slug.


Western Animation[edit | hide]

  • Re Boot played with this trope and subverted it and eventually pretended it never happened. Big Bad Megabyte is trapped in a Room 101 by Bob in an early episode (though Bob later becomes retconned into a Technical Pacifist), and so Megs uses the last of his strength to self destruct himself using a panel on his forearm that appears to be a Shout-Out to Predator. His chamber of doom is ejected into orbit to keep him from destroying everything. Even though Bob would never do something like this later in the series, and Megabyte turned a sickly black blotch as he prepared to kaboom, the chamber lands on the outskirts of Mainframe and we see Megabyte's fist punch through the chamber door in a Finger-Twitching Revival (well, by his standards).
    • The supervirus Daemon has this as her entire purpose. She infects the entire Net and once her personal clock runs out she self-destructs and in sixty seconds everything infected by her gets destroyed as well.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender: "The Boiling Rock" has the warden telling the guards to cut the gondola our heroes are using to escape, with him still in it. Seems he's really that obsessed with keeping a no-escape record.
    • At least some of the Technical Pacifist Air Nomads fought back against the super-powered firebenders before the genocide was completed. Aang finds the skeleton of his mentor Gyatso next to a pile of enemy corpses.
  • Done interestingly in Transformers Armada'. In Armada Megatron, knowing that if he and Optimus Prime both live the war will restart and Unicron will be revived. He ends their final battle by allowing himself to be sucked into the space vortex, even shiving Optimus' hand when he tries to stop his fall.
  • The two-part premiere of Transformers: Beast Wars had Megatron transforming to robot mode and risking fatal Energon exposure, in order to blow up Optimus Primal. Yeah, neither dies.

For if I must die, I shall take you with me.

    • Depth Charge goes out this way, taking Rampage with him by stabbing the crab with a spike of raw energon.
  • In the Justice League: The New Frontier DVD, Agent Faraday has just enough strength to grab and unpin two grenades before the monster swallows him. The Martian Manhunter is moved by his sacrifice and subsequently goes on a nice little rampage.
    • In the comic the film is based on, the action was done by John Cloud instead. While it was insanely awesome, the subplot had little to do with the plot, so it was cut, and the moment was integrated into Faraday's Heroic Sacrifice.
  • In the straight-to-DVD Futurama movie, Bender's Big Score Lars, knowing that he's doomed to die eventually, presses Nudar and himself to the duplicate Bender, which was about to self-destruct. His video will reveals that he was actually a duplicate Fry, and wanted to die doing something useful (neatly wrapping up all the movie's loose ends) instead of causing Leela the pain of dying unexpectedly.
  • In Star Wars: The Clone Wars, this is quite possibly the only Crowning Moment of Awesome ever awarded to a Mook.

Battle Droid: (after critically wounding a Clone Trooper)) Do we take prisoners?
Heavy (Clone Trooper): I don't (cue explosion.).

  • In the Made for TV Movie Scooby Doo and the Witch's Ghost, when Thorn traps the ghost of Sarah Ravencroft back inside her (Sarah's) own spellbook, she takes her great-great-great-grandson Ben with her.

"I'M NOT GOING BAKC ALONE!!!"

  • Used in Galaxy Rangers in the episode "Smuggler's Gauntlet." The antagonist of the episode stole some high-end Psycho Serum, and the Rangers are sent out to retrieve it. They break into the antagonist's hideout and are surrounded by mooks. Queue Zachary activating a neuron bomb capable of wiping out all life in a city block's radius and threatening to detonate it unless the antagonist backs down. Goose may have the Cowboy Cop reputation, but push Zach, and he proves to be crazier.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003): The turtles' Triceraton ally Zog does this to the Shredder by keeping him immobile inside an exploding ship. While he succeeds in his intention of giving the turtles enough time to escape, the Shredder survives, while he himself...doesn't.
    • Villainous example: 2K3 Shredder in Turtles Forever made up his mind to end it this way by ending all of existence if only so he could destroy the TMNTs from Turtle Prime/the original Mirage comic.
  • Demona and Macbath from Gargoyles had a curse placed on them that made them both immortal. The only way either one can die is through the use of this trope, i.e. one must kill the other, which will result in both of their deaths.
  • Captain Marcus tries to do this in episode 11 of Exo Squad, after his attempt to liberate Earth results in catastrophic defeat. Subverted in that he fails: the Resolute is destroyed before it can ram Phaeton's flagship.


Real Life[edit | hide]

  • Fighter pilots often crashed their crippled planes into their intended target. The Japanese kamikaze intentionally set out to do this, flying planes packed with explosives specifically for that purpose.
    • Eventually, tactics were developed so that the ramming attack doesn't necessarily kill the pilot who attempts it. One Soviet pilot, Boris Kobzan, actually managed to do it four times.
    • A particular German fighter group perfected the nonlethal variant in WWII, causing serious casualties to Allied air forces.
  • The Hashashin, from whom we've derived the term "assassin," were known for attacking targets with ritual daggers, usually in a suicidal assault, to ensure that their victims would not escape.
    • It's also possible that instead of their suicidal attacks to ensure the victim dies, it's to ensure that the killer also dies, seeing as how their suicidal attacks show how dedicated to the cause the Hashashin is.
  • Arguably the entire Philipine campaign in 1941 from the American point of view. American contingency plans, despite fifty years of preparation for war with Japan, couldn't figure out how to prevent the Philipines from being captured. Yet no one could abandon them as, if one is going to be an imperialist, one should at least protect one's charges from other imperialists. In a strange sort of way it was an American version of Bushido. Be that as it may the Philipines took a long time and interfered with the Japanese schedule considerably.
  • Exploding ants.
  • Honey bees have barbs on their stingers, which lodge in the body of their target and are ripped out of the abdomen of the bee while continueing to pump venom. Unfortunately for the honey bee, the injury caused by doing this is fatal and they die soon afterwards.
    • It is a rather sad subversion actually. A bee can sting another insect and kill it without any harm to itself, but to a bigger animal its Last Breath Sting will most likely not be lethal.
  • Jan van Speyk was a Dutch naval commander, who fought against the Belgian Revolution. In 1831, Belgians captured his boat, and demanded him take the Dutch flag down. He said "Rather to blow up then!" and fired a pistol into a barrel of gunpowder, destroying his boat, and killing dozens (including most of his own crew).
  • The British destroyer Glowworm rammed the German heavy cruiser Admiral Hipper in WWII, heavily damaging the German ship. The commander of the Glowworm was awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross, partly due to the recommendation of the German captain of the Hipper, who wrote of the incident to the British authorities via the Red Cross.
    • Two Things here: The Glowworm's rudder was busted so the attack was as much misfortune as anything else. Also the Hipper was able to continue its mission and stayed in the drydock for (only?) 2 weeks.
  • Kashmir seperatists and Pakistani Taliban often launch suicidal attacks, with 'fedayeen' fighters, a small unit of 5-10 soldiers sent deep into enemy territory and attack targets with abandon until stopped and killed by the response.
  • Many an animal mortally wounded by a hunter has had time enough to return the favor (or attempt to) before finally succumbing.
    • Brown Bears and African Cape Buffalo are both particularly infamous for this.
      • This is the reason boar spears have the lugs at the head.
  • There have been all too many reported cases of murder-suicides involving "average folk" to name any specific examples.
  • The strategy of "mutually assured destruction" (a.k.a. MAD).
  • Before his death, Sir Terry Pratchett stated that he planned on doing this to his Alzheimers. It wasn't a joke; he lobbied to get assisted suicide panels in the UK.
  • Spetsnaz, the Russian special forces soldiers, always keep at least one grenade on them for this exact purpose in combat.
  • The Samurai had an expression for doing just this: "Taking a souvenir to Hell."
  • The Russian folk hero Ivan Susanin ostensibly lured a squad of Polish soldiers into the thickets of the forest never to be heard about again, after they hired him to guide them to the residence of the Russian tsar they intended to assassinate. During World War 2 the deed was reenacted by another peasant, Matvey Kuzmin. The Nazi who occupied his village wanted him to help them bypass the Soviet defenses. He agreed but then sent his grandson to warn the nearby Soviet troops, and then led the Nazis straight into the ambush. The Nazi were slaughtered or captured, but not before their officer shot Matvey. He was buried with military honors and became the oldest holder of the Hero of the Soviet Union order.
  • The Israeli 'Samson Option' - basically, if all hope is lost and Israel is about to be defeated, launch nukes at the responsible party or parties.
    • Which includes anyone perceived to be hostile, whether or not they're actually attacking. After all, if you're going down in a blaze of spiteful glory, you might as well take revenge for thousands of years of persecution and pogroms. Among notable targets is Moscow, which is liable to trigger the Perimetyr system and cause a Global Thermonuclear War.
  • Has happened to several families in the wake of the recession. For example, a Seattle woman, Chhouy Harm, shot and killed her son-in-law and two of her granddaughters before taking her own life. In many cases, including this one, the killer was already depressed and/or mentally ill, and the economic crisis was the last straw.
  • Inversion. Western Allies often regarded this as senseless spite in Germans and Japanese toward the end of the war. This is arguably Moral Myopia as they found it easier to understand in those times when their own team did such things earlier in the war. Though they could at least say that the war wasn't so obviously lost for them at the time and in that context it served a purpose in weakening the enemy for future campaigns, putting a kink in his time schedule and so forth; and was therefore not just Honor Before Reason , though the latter motive was not unknown among them either. Allies attributed it to fascist indoctrination(with a considerable degree of truth) when their enemies did it, though it can sound slightly ungracious from the comfortable context of peace. They of course did have a point; everyone wanted to go home to their families by then after all. In any case it was another excuse to be angry at their enemies so no one seemed to mind.
    • Considering this the influence of Those Wacky Nazis was not illogical in Germany at least. Before World War II German soldiers were brave enough, but their governments were more willing to make terms, soldiers didn't fight any longer then tradition demanded, and honor did not abolish reason . Furthermore a number of old-school German soldiers really preferred it this way even during World War II and were motivated by the Party's idea of encouragement to fight longer then they would otherwise have. In any case it is less heroic when one considers that it was often more at the orders of people living in luxury who mainly wished to delay their appointment with the hangman, then at the will of those who were actually fighting.
      • In some parts of western Germany, there was almost a three-way war going on between the invading Allies, the Germans who wanted to give up, and the death squads sent to make sure they didn't give up. As the local towns had already left all their young men dead on the Russian Front, stood a good chance of being helplessly flattened by artillery, and in general could hardly be accused of insufficient dedication assuming dedication to Nazidom a virtue, they had good reason to be reluctant about taking people with them.
    • Japan actually made this a large part of its strategy. It assumed they were a Proud Warrior Race and Americans were too wussy to be willing to call their bluff. Part of this was wrong and part irrelevant; Americans were willing to endure just as nasty combat as Japanese at times, but their preference was to bypass them and let them starve when they could and mow them down and forget about them when they couldn't.
  • School shootings. They are usually committed by boys who have been bullied beyond the Despair Event Horizon and who see the whole of humankind as their enemies. School shootings are not mere expanded suicides; they are a similar reaction to a cornered rat who has no other escape but attacking anyone in the vicinity.
  • When the Sun dies in about 5 billion years, its transformation into a red giant will actually destroy a large portion of our Solar System.
  • Several examples can be found in sports, one would be the final round of the Danish Superliga, where one of the matches were between Randers and Esbjerg in Randers, two teams struggling against relegation. Randers had originally said that they would not bring scores from other matches over the speakers, but when Lyngby got a 2-0 lead against Odense in the 80th minute (a result that meant Esbjerg were relegated for sure), Randers were leading 2-1 and the stadium speaker said what the score was in the other match. Tim Janssen, Dutch Esbjerg striker, scored in the 89th minute, relegating both teams.
  • Sun Tzu also talked this on the flip side of To Win Without Fighting. Basically, "if you're surrounded with no hope of victory, cut off your escape routes to encourage your men to fight to the death."