History Main / ThouShaltNotKill

24th Mar '18 9:33:56 PM ChaoticNovelist
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With superhero characters, attitudes toward no-kill policies range from utterly ignoring it (such as the protagonists of ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}''), to treating it as a [[BewareTheNiceOnes preferred outcome]] (such as Superman), to strict adherence to it in all cases (such as Franchise/{{Batman}}). Whatever the moral case is, this trope is often used to show off the hero's incredible precision, whether it be with a fist or a gun. This can include things like [[BlastingItOutOfTheirHands separating the mook from their weapon with a precisely aimed bullet]], or possibly [[TapOnTheHead knocking an opponent out]]. Whatever the case, their non-lethal attacks are due to their incredible skill. Note that this often a case of RealityIsUnrealistic as many of these attacks are very capable of causing serious injury or death.

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With superhero characters, attitudes toward no-kill policies range from utterly ignoring it (such as the protagonists MainCharacters of ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}''), to treating it as a [[BewareTheNiceOnes preferred outcome]] (such as Superman), to strict adherence to it in all cases (such as Franchise/{{Batman}}). Whatever the moral case is, this trope is often used to show off the hero's incredible precision, whether it be with a fist or a gun. This can include things like [[BlastingItOutOfTheirHands separating the mook from their weapon with a precisely aimed bullet]], or possibly [[TapOnTheHead knocking an opponent out]]. Whatever the case, their non-lethal attacks are due to their incredible skill. Note that this often a case of RealityIsUnrealistic as many of these attacks are very capable of causing serious injury or death.
18th Mar '18 8:28:49 PM Schol-R-LEA
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** It has been mentioned that in addition to several deadly encounters with [[spoiler:Nazi spies during WWII]], a number of villains have died fighting [[BigGood Lady Astarte]] due to accidents; like most superheroes, she doesn't choose to kill ([[spoiler:and it is a major CharacterDevelopment moment that she would actually try to kill Deathlist during his attack on the school]]), but supervillainy is a dangerous field at the best of times, and even in cases where she could do something, she sees herself as being under no obligation to save them from their own mistakes if it would put others at risk.

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** It has been mentioned that in addition to several deadly encounters with [[spoiler:Nazi spies during WWII]], a number of villains have died fighting [[BigGood Lady Astarte]] due to accidents; like most superheroes, she doesn't choose to kill ([[spoiler:and it is a major CharacterDevelopment moment that she would actually try to kill the AxCrazy BloodKnight Deathlist during his attack on the school]]), but supervillainy is a dangerous field at the best of times, and even in cases where she could do something, she sees herself as being under no obligation to save them from their own mistakes if it would put others at risk.
18th Mar '18 8:26:05 PM Schol-R-LEA
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* Averted with extreme prejudice in the Literature/WhateleyUniverse. It's a sad commentary on a superheroic [[TheVerse 'verse]] when the person best known for having a code against killing is a super''villain'' (Mimeo, a very high-end [[PowerCopying Power Mimic]], so it is not just out of good intentions - he wants to be able to keep getting the power-up from fighting superheroes so he can go after his real targets, meaning that killing his 'donors' would be counterproductive).

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* Averted with extreme prejudice in the Literature/WhateleyUniverse. It's a sad commentary on a superheroic [[TheVerse 'verse]] when the person best known for having a code against killing is a super''villain'' (Mimeo, a very high-end [[PowerCopying Power Mimic]], so it is not just out of good intentions - he wants to be able to keep getting the power-up from fighting superheroes so he can go after his real targets, meaning that killing his 'donors' would be counterproductive).counterproductive; also, he grew up around mobsters, and was disturbed by the psychological effects becoming a 'made man' had on people he knew).
11th Mar '18 8:15:10 PM Discar
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Thou shalt not kill."'' [[note]]The phrase actually translates to "Thou shalt not murder." "Thou shalt not kill" is an Elizabethean translation, and there's been some semantic drift since. It would be strange for the Old Testament to forbid every manner of killing, given the times when God is said to have ordered the Israelites to kill, e.g., wiping out the Amalekites.[[/note]]

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Thou shalt not kill."'' [[note]]The phrase actually translates to "Thou shalt not murder." "Thou shalt not kill" is an Elizabethean translation, and there's been some semantic drift since. It would be strange for the Old Testament to forbid every manner of killing, given the times when God is said to have ordered the Israelites to kill, e.g., wiping out the Amalekites.[[/note]]"''
4th Mar '18 6:55:18 AM Kazmahu
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* Defied in ''TabletopGame/SentinelsOfTheMultiverse''. In fact, the resident Batman {{Expy}} has a FlavorText quote warning against the perils of mercy that originally comes from one of the Caped Crusader's villains. Taken in context, this appears to be a proportionate response thing, since most of the game's villains are potentially apocalyptic threats and and there are examples in the wider lore of heroes [[TheFettered limiting themselves]] (the example given is that everyone's happy to have [[AllCrimesAreEqual Fanatic]] on their side against villains, but nobody's in a hurry to let her deal with a bank robbery).
21st Jan '18 11:11:18 AM Schol-R-LEA
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* Averted with extreme prejudice in the Literature/WhateleyUniverse. It's a sad commentary on a superheroic [[TheVerse 'verse]] when the person best known for having a code against killing is a super''villain'' (Mimeo, a veru high-end [[PowerCopying Power Mimic]], so it is not just out of good intentions - he wants to be able to keep getting the power-up from fighting superheroes so he can go after his real targets, meaning that killing his 'donors' would be counterproductive).

to:

* Averted with extreme prejudice in the Literature/WhateleyUniverse. It's a sad commentary on a superheroic [[TheVerse 'verse]] when the person best known for having a code against killing is a super''villain'' (Mimeo, a veru very high-end [[PowerCopying Power Mimic]], so it is not just out of good intentions - he wants to be able to keep getting the power-up from fighting superheroes so he can go after his real targets, meaning that killing his 'donors' would be counterproductive).
17th Dec '17 11:23:58 AM sgamer82
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* In Creator/GeorgeCarlin's routine on The Ten Commandments, he ends with this one and says that, because more people have been killed in the name of God than for any other reason[[note]]Untrue, of course. Neither Hitler nor Stalin nor Mao invoked any God before killing millions of their own people, Jenghiz Khan didn't care two hoots about religion, and we could go on and on with this.[[/note]], it really comes down to who's doing the killing and who's getting killed. He decides it should be renamed "Thou shalt try ''really'' hard not to kill anyone, unless they prey to a different invisible man from the one you prey to."

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* In Creator/GeorgeCarlin's routine on The Ten Commandments, he ends with this one and says that, claims that because more people have been killed in the name of God than for any other reason[[note]]Untrue, of course. Neither Hitler nor Stalin nor Mao invoked any God before killing millions of their own people, Jenghiz Khan didn't care two hoots about religion, and we could go on and on with this.[[/note]], reason, it really comes down to who's doing the killing and who's getting killed. He decides it should be renamed "Thou shalt try ''really'' hard not to kill anyone, unless they prey pray to a different invisible man from the one you prey pray to."
20th Nov '17 2:53:07 AM Enter_User_Name
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[[WhatMeasureIsANonHuman Opinions differ on how this applies to sentient life other than humans.]] In general, it's still up to BigDamnVillains to kill other villains. It's perfectly fine to [[ImmortalLifeIsCheap "kill" immortals though]] as it is to kill the undead. The MercyKill sometimes winds up as an exception. KarmicDeath, SelfDisposingVillain, and HoistByHisOwnPetard provide alternate ways to kill off villains without forcing the hero to get his hands dirty.

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[[WhatMeasureIsANonHuman Opinions differ on how this applies to sentient life other than humans.]] In general, it's still up to BigDamnVillains to kill other villains. It's perfectly fine to [[ImmortalLifeIsCheap "kill" immortals though]] as it is to kill the undead. The MercyKill sometimes winds up as an exception. KarmicDeath, SelfDisposingVillain, and HoistByHisOwnPetard provide alternate ways to kill off villains without forcing the hero heroes to get his their hands dirty.
5th Nov '17 9:32:10 AM Discar
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* ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'': Petey avoids killing if at all possible, and at one point refuses to let a spy go back home because she'll just get needlessly mind-ripped. After [[spoiler:the oafans give everyone immortality]], he starts going to truly absurd lengths to avoid killing, like teraporting entire fleets that are in the middle of a massive fight. As he says, he can't be sure these people will still be his enemies in hundreds or thousands of years, so killing ''anyone'' is like killing future allies.
4th Nov '17 9:50:04 AM sgamer82
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* The Red Panda and Flying Squirrel of ''Podcast/RedPandaAdventures'' go out of their way to avoid using lethal force. Though the Red Panda owns a katana, for example, he won't take it into battle so as to not even have the option. They fight with fists, gadgets, and hypnosis. They aren't as firmly wedded to it as other superheroes with a "no killing" code, however. They can and will employ lethal force if the situation calls for it. Fighting non-living foes such as Professor Zombie's undead minions naturally falls into this, but the pair have also been willing to kill if the entire city, or even world is at stake, such as killing the Nazi Ubermensch, Tevas, to keep him away from the Normandy invasion. The one thing that will make either the Red Panda and Flying Squirrel outright ''abandon'' this edict is if a villain seems to have killed one or the other. A developing VillainTeamUp decides against killing the Squirrel to get to the Red Panda precisely because they know it ''will''.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.ThouShaltNotKill