History Main / ShootTheRope

14th Mar '16 5:54:14 AM foxley
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* ''Series/TheNewAvengers'': Done as part of a TwangHello by a bow-wielding assassin in "Faces". He uses an arrow to sever the the rope holding up a training dummy next to Purdey as a way of announcing his presence.
1st Jan '16 7:36:38 PM nombretomado
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* An episode of ''Series/{{Smallville}}'' has a variation, not with a bullet but with [[{{Smallville}} Clark]]'s heat-vision in an attempt to save his girlfriend Alicia. [[spoiler:[[TearJerker It didn't work.]]]]

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* An episode of ''Series/{{Smallville}}'' has a variation, not with a bullet but with [[{{Smallville}} Clark]]'s Clark's heat-vision in an attempt to save his girlfriend Alicia. [[spoiler:[[TearJerker It didn't work.]]]]
7th Nov '15 3:51:36 PM Prfnoff
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* This is done at the starting of ''BraveFencerMusashi'', although they were magic machine gun bullets coming straight from your [[FingerGun hand]].

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* This is done at the starting of ''BraveFencerMusashi'', ''VideoGame/BraveFencerMusashi'', although they were magic machine gun bullets coming straight from your [[FingerGun hand]].



* In ''AnakshaFemaleAssassin'', [[spoiler:this is how you beat the last stage. Your target is fully armored and [[KungFuProofMook can't be killed by your bullets]], but there's a steel girder tied to a rope that's hanging over the street...]]

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* In ''AnakshaFemaleAssassin'', ''VideoGame/AnakshaFemaleAssassin'', [[spoiler:this is how you beat the last stage. Your target is fully armored and [[KungFuProofMook can't be killed by your bullets]], but there's a steel girder tied to a rope that's hanging over the street...]]



* Walker uses this trope in ''SpecOpsTheLine'' to save [[spoiler: Lugo from being lynched by an angry mob. It doesn't work; Walker manages to sever the rope, but Lugo dies anyway.]]

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* Walker uses this trope in ''SpecOpsTheLine'' ''VideoGame/SpecOpsTheLine'' to save [[spoiler: Lugo from being lynched by an angry mob. It doesn't work; Walker manages to sever the rope, but Lugo dies anyway.]]
17th Sep '15 12:05:39 PM StFan
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[[folder:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
* Dr. Manga/BlackJack manages to pull this off by throwing a ''scalpel''.
* In ''TrinityBlood'', Father Tres once frees Abel this way when the latter is tied to a chair.

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[[folder:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''Manga/BlackJack'': Dr. Manga/BlackJack Black Jack manages to pull this off by throwing a ''scalpel''.
* In ''TrinityBlood'', ''LightNovel/TrinityBlood'', Father Tres once frees Abel this way when the latter is tied to a chair.



* In the 3rd volume of the comic book series ''DeCapeEtDeCrocs'', a villain shoots the rope the good guy is hanging from, effectively sending him into the shark infested ocean. When congratulated on his skills, he answers "Well, [[AccidentalAimingSkills I was aiming for his head]]..."
* Red Arrow does this (from horseback) to save GreenLantern's life when they are trapped in the Old West and Green Lantern is about to be lynched in ''JusticeLeagueOfAmerica 80 Page Giant''.

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* In the 3rd volume of the comic book series ''DeCapeEtDeCrocs'', ''ComicBook/DeCapeEtDeCrocs'', a villain shoots the rope the good guy is hanging from, effectively sending him into the shark infested ocean. When congratulated on his skills, he answers "Well, [[AccidentalAimingSkills I was aiming for his head]]..."
* Red Arrow does this (from horseback) to save GreenLantern's life when they are trapped in the Old West and Green Lantern is about to be lynched in ''JusticeLeagueOfAmerica ''Franchise/JusticeLeagueOfAmerica 80 Page Giant''.



* After the ''ZeroHour'' storyline, this was revealed as [[{{Nightwing}} Dick Grayson]]'s [[MyGreatestFailure Greatest Failure]]. In his early days, Dick as Robin had to save Batman and the DA who replaced Harvey Dent after his transformation into Two-Face from a deathtrap the aforementioned villain had made. Dick thought it was easy - cut the rope when the trap was sprung. [[spoiler: He didn't realize that Two-Face's deathtraps followed his ''modus operandi'' - he saved the DA from hanging, only to drop him into the ocean below.]]

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* After the ''ZeroHour'' ''ComicBook/ZeroHour'' storyline, this was revealed as [[{{Nightwing}} [[ComicBook/{{Nightwing}} Dick Grayson]]'s [[MyGreatestFailure Greatest Failure]]. In his early days, Dick as Robin had to save Batman and the DA who replaced Harvey Dent after his transformation into Two-Face from a deathtrap the aforementioned villain had made. Dick thought it was easy - cut the rope when the trap was sprung. [[spoiler: He didn't realize that Two-Face's deathtraps followed his ''modus operandi'' - he saved the DA from hanging, only to drop him into the ocean below.]]



* ''Film/TheGoodTheBadAndTheUgly'' had this as part of a scam with the hero turning in his partner for the bounty and repeatedly saving him from the gallows before the sentence could be carried out in this fashion. The comedic variation also occurred at one point.
** It's a RuleOfThrees: first time played straight, second time the rope is only partially severed; by the time the rope breaks, the horse has run off and Tuco has to catch a lift on Blondie's horse; this incident leads to an acrimonious breakup. By the time Tuco catches up with him intent on revenge, Blondie is about to do the scam with a new partner. Tuco refuses to allow Blondie to shoot, and the man is hung.

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* ''Film/TheGoodTheBadAndTheUgly'' had this as part of a scam with the hero turning in his partner for the bounty and repeatedly saving him from the gallows before the sentence could be carried out in this fashion. The comedic variation also occurred at one point.
**
point. It's a RuleOfThrees: first time played straight, second time the rope is only partially severed; by the time the rope breaks, the horse has run off and Tuco has to catch a lift on Blondie's horse; this incident leads to an acrimonious breakup. By the time Tuco catches up with him intent on revenge, Blondie is about to do the scam with a new partner. Tuco refuses to allow Blondie to shoot, and the man is hung.



* ''Film/RobinHoodMenInTights'' also had this (when someone comments on the [[LampshadeHanging improbable shot]], the shooter admits he was really [[AccidentalAimingSkills aiming for the hangman]]).
** This may have been a parody of a similar scene in ''Film/RobinHoodPrinceOfThieves''.
** Every version of ''RobinHood'' features this in some fashion. It is very much a staple of the current ''Series/RobinHood'' series.

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* ''Film/RobinHoodMenInTights'' also had has this (when someone comments on the [[LampshadeHanging improbable shot]], the shooter admits he was really [[AccidentalAimingSkills aiming for the hangman]]).
**
hangman]]). This may have been a parody of a similar scene in ''Film/RobinHoodPrinceOfThieves''.
** Every version of ''RobinHood'' features this in some fashion. It is very much a staple of the current ''Series/RobinHood'' series.
''Film/RobinHoodPrinceOfThieves''.



* Every version of ''Myth/RobinHood'' features this in some fashion. It is very much a staple of the current ''Series/RobinHood'' series.



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* Turned UpToEleven and then [[ZigzaggingTrope quadruple-subverted]] in ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick''. Roy [[ThrowingYourSwordAlwaysWorks throws his sword]]--which is ''broken''--at his assembled, about-to-be-hanged teammates, and ends up freeing ''all'' of them...except Belkar, whose rope he misses. However, it ''does'' hit the hangman...[[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0164.html who falls over and pulls the switch as he dies.]] Fortunately, Belkar is too light for the fall to break his neck or even strangle him (the non-human Belkar notes the absurdity of assuming the same execution methods will work on all species), so he just ends up hanging upside down for a while.

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* Turned UpToEleven and then [[ZigzaggingTrope quadruple-subverted]] in ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick''. Roy [[ThrowingYourSwordAlwaysWorks throws his sword]]--which sword]] -- which is ''broken''--at ''broken'' -- at his assembled, about-to-be-hanged teammates, and ends up freeing ''all'' of them...them... except Belkar, whose rope he misses. However, it ''does'' hit the hangman... [[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0164.html who falls over and pulls the switch as he dies.]] Fortunately, Belkar is too light for the fall to break his neck or even strangle him (the non-human Belkar notes the absurdity of assuming the same execution methods will work on all species), so he just ends up hanging upside down for a while.



[[folder:Web Original]]
* ''[[WebVideo/TheAnnoyingOrange The High Fructose Adventures of Annoying Orange]]'': In "Spaghetti West", Al Dente's bullet ricochets off Orange's sheriff's badge and cuts through the noose around Pear's neck.
[[/folder]]



* ''[[WebVideo/TheAnnoyingOrange The High Fructose Adventures of Annoying Orange]]'': In "Spaghetti West", Al Dente's bullet ricochets off Orange's sheriff's badge and cuts through the noose around Pear's neck.



* Supposedly during Operation Enduring Freedom, Spanish Navy Marine snipers shot cables hanging from the mast to the bridge of the North Korean freighter So San. The shots were made at a range of 400 yards (370 m), with rough sea, from the deck of SPS Navarra (F85), and the Marines were armed with Barrett M95 rifles.
** Which makes sense. The M95 shoots [[{{BFG}} a .50 caliber round]], so it could theoretically be used to sever a rope. On the other hand, if you're using that big a round, it'd probably be an easier shot to just shoot the beam the rope is hanging from.

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* Supposedly during Operation Enduring Freedom, Spanish Navy Marine snipers shot cables hanging from the mast to the bridge of the North Korean freighter So San. The shots were made at a range of 400 yards (370 m), with rough sea, from the deck of SPS Navarra (F85), and the Marines were armed with Barrett M95 rifles.
**
rifles. Which makes sense. The M95 shoots [[{{BFG}} a .50 caliber round]], so it could theoretically be used to sever a rope. On the other hand, if you're using that big a round, it'd probably be an easier shot to just shoot the beam the rope is hanging from.



17th Sep '15 11:43:10 AM StFan
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* ''Series/{{Zorro}}'': In an episode, Zorro saves an old friend of Don Diego from hanging by shooting the rope with
a [[ArrowsOnFire flaming arrow]]. He does so before the trapdoor is opened, though, leaving time enough for the fire to burn the rope. He also [[PinnedToTheWall pins the executor's sleeve to the gallows]] by firing another arrow to prevent him from interfering.

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* ''Series/{{Zorro}}'': In an episode, Zorro saves an old friend of Don Diego from hanging by shooting the rope with
with a [[ArrowsOnFire flaming arrow]]. He does so before the trapdoor is opened, though, leaving time enough for the fire to burn the rope. He also [[PinnedToTheWall pins the executor's sleeve to the gallows]] by firing another arrow to prevent him from interfering.
17th Sep '15 11:42:35 AM StFan
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The hero's been [[PublicExecution led to the gallows]] and is about to do the metaphorical 'hemp fandango'. He looks pretty much boned, right? Nope, the BigDamnHeroes are on the way! They'll save him by [[ImprobableAimingSkills splitting the rope]] on the noose with a well-timed arrow (or a blade, or a bullet, if the time period's a bit later), just as he's about to take a long drop on a short rope.

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The hero's been [[PublicExecution led to the gallows]] and is about to do the metaphorical 'hemp fandango'."hemp fandango". He looks pretty much boned, right? Nope, the BigDamnHeroes are on the way! They'll save him by [[ImprobableAimingSkills splitting the rope]] on the noose with a well-timed arrow (or a blade, or a bullet, if the time period's a bit later), just as he's about to take a long drop on a short rope.



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[[folder:Film - Live Action]]

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[[folder:Live Action TV]]

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** The History Channel show ''Extreme Marksmen'' noted that there were no documented examples of this trope actually being done (or even attempted) with a gun. But they had expert shooter attempt to do it anyway, just to see if it was possible. On his first attempt he eventually broke the rope, but it took about 5 or 6 shots. Naturally, that wouldn't have been fast enough to save the victim. He tried again, this time using wadcutter bullets (normally used only for shooting paper targets) which hit a slightly wider area than pointed or rounded bullets, and this time took only 2 shots to break the rope. Since he fired the first shot at the exact moment the "victim" (a sack of potatoes) was dropped, this left at least a slight chance that he could've survived, as the follow-up shot came very quickly due to the shooter's great skill. So with the right ammo and an exceptional shooter, it was possible (though extremely unlikely) that it could be done. It was mentioned that hangman's rope is roughly a half inch wide, which is wider than most bullets. And aside from some machine guns, sniper rifles and super-magnum hunting rifles (that almost all came onto the scene after hanging had begun to fall out of favor and was certainly no longer used in in places public enough to be disrupted), most guns with bullets larger than a half-inch in diameter have poor accuracy. So there's no realistic way to take out the rope in a single shot.

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** * The History Channel show ''Extreme Marksmen'' noted that there were no documented examples of this trope actually being done (or even attempted) with a gun. But they had expert shooter attempt to do it anyway, just to see if it was possible. On his first attempt he eventually broke the rope, but it took about 5 or 6 shots. Naturally, that wouldn't have been fast enough to save the victim. He tried again, this time using wadcutter bullets (normally used only for shooting paper targets) which hit a slightly wider area than pointed or rounded bullets, and this time took only 2 shots to break the rope. Since he fired the first shot at the exact moment the "victim" (a sack of potatoes) was dropped, this left at least a slight chance that he could've survived, as the follow-up shot came very quickly due to the shooter's great skill. So with the right ammo and an exceptional shooter, it was possible (though extremely unlikely) that it could be done. It was mentioned that hangman's rope is roughly a half inch wide, which is wider than most bullets. And aside from some machine guns, sniper rifles and super-magnum hunting rifles (that almost all came onto the scene after hanging had begun to fall out of favor and was certainly no longer used in in places public enough to be disrupted), most guns with bullets larger than a half-inch in diameter have poor accuracy. So there's no realistic way to take out the rope in a single shot.


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* ''Series/{{Zorro}}'': In an episode, Zorro saves an old friend of Don Diego from hanging by shooting the rope with
a [[ArrowsOnFire flaming arrow]]. He does so before the trapdoor is opened, though, leaving time enough for the fire to burn the rope. He also [[PinnedToTheWall pins the executor's sleeve to the gallows]] by firing another arrow to prevent him from interfering.
25th Aug '15 9:10:23 AM DeisTheAlcano
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** Shay, from ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedRogue'', can do this to Gist from being hanged by the gangs of New York. Just like in ''Black Flag'', the bonus objective demands it for the OneHundredPercentCompletion.

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** Shay, from ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedRogue'', can do this to save Gist from being hanged by the gangs of New York. Just like in ''Black Flag'', the bonus objective demands it for the OneHundredPercentCompletion.
25th Aug '15 9:09:30 AM DeisTheAlcano
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You see, people may have only figured out how to do hanging consistently correctly in the nineteenth century, but then they started to do it the scientific way. Normal, "long drop" hanging kills by '''breaking the neck''' when done ''correctly'' -- that is, in a Robin Hood story the slowly strangling victim is not so implausible, because they haven't yet figured how much rope to use, and this often resulted in "short drop" hanging, where the body's energy is not enough to break the neck, and the rope just slowly strangles the victim.

But this is unlikely to be the case when bullets are used, because at this point executioners have already learned the proper method. Though in a few cases hangmen have ''deliberately'' "botched" the hanging to make the victim's death more painful (for example, after Nazi journalist and war criminal [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julius_Streicher Julius Streicher]] yelled "Heil Hitler" ''and'' insulted the executioner just before his execution, it is widely believed that the hangman [[KicktheSonOfABitch repositioned the noose so that he would be strangled]], nevermind how said hangman always denied having done so). Another possibility was to pay out so much rope that when the drop finally ends, the body energy gets so high that [[OffWithHisHead the head]] ''[[OffWithHisHead tears off]]''.

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You see, people may have only figured out how to do hanging consistently correctly in the nineteenth century, but then they started to do it the scientific way. Normal, "long drop" hanging kills by '''breaking the neck''' when done ''correctly'' -- that is, in a Robin Hood story the slowly strangling victim is not so implausible, because they haven't yet figured how much rope to use, and this often resulted in "short drop" hanging, where the body's energy is was not enough to break the neck, and the rope just slowly strangles strangled the victim.

But this is unlikely to be the case when bullets are used, because at this point executioners have already learned the proper method. Though in a few cases hangmen have ''deliberately'' "botched" the hanging to make the victim's death more painful (for example, after Nazi journalist and war criminal [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julius_Streicher Julius Streicher]] yelled "Heil Hitler" ''and'' insulted the executioner just before his execution, it is widely believed that the hangman [[KicktheSonOfABitch repositioned the noose so that he would be strangled]], nevermind how said hangman always denied having done so). Another possibility was to pay out so much rope that when the drop finally ends, ended, the body energy gets got so high that [[OffWithHisHead the head]] head ''[[OffWithHisHead tears was torn off]]''.



* ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedIVBlackFlag'' has an early mission in which you run around Nassau saving pirates from British soldiers in order to recruit them into your crew. The final pirate you're made to save is about to be hanged; one of the missions' bonus objectives is to shoot the rope to free him. Definitely a CrowningMomentOfAwesome if done correctly.

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* ''Franchise/AssassinsCreed:''
**
''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedIVBlackFlag'' has an early mission in which you run around Nassau saving pirates from British soldiers in order to recruit them into your crew. The final pirate you're made to save is about to be hanged; one of the missions' bonus objectives is to shoot the rope to free him. Definitely a CrowningMomentOfAwesome if done correctly.correctly.
** Shay, from ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedRogue'', can do this to Gist from being hanged by the gangs of New York. Just like in ''Black Flag'', the bonus objective demands it for the OneHundredPercentCompletion.
19th Jun '15 11:24:31 AM StarSword
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* One scene in ''Series/{{Intelligence 2014}}'' has Gabriel and Riley practicing in the the shooting range. Then Chris Jameson, who up to now has just been presented as a techie, comes up to the bar and knocks down his entire target sheet by shooting the strings it's hanging from. Lest the full implications escape you, Riley is a US Secret Service agent, and Gabriel is former Delta Force and a {{cyborg}}.
29th May '15 6:34:54 PM Odon
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* ''Film/MacheteKills''. Our MadeOfIron hero is hung by a redneck sheriff, but it [[TheManTheyCouldNotHang doesn't kill him]]. The sheriff then gets a phone call, draws his pistol in an [[BaitAndSwitchGunshot apparent attempt to finish off Machete]], shoots the rope and hands him the phone.

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* ''Film/MacheteKills''. Our MadeOfIron hero is hung by a redneck sheriff, but it [[TheManTheyCouldNotHang [[TheManTheyCouldntHang doesn't kill him]]. The sheriff then gets a phone call, draws his pistol in an [[BaitAndSwitchGunshot apparent attempt to finish off Machete]], shoots the rope and hands him the phone. It's the President of the United States, offering a pardon for Machete.
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