Zulieka is about to be punished -- anything from being dumped by her Love Interest
to a Fate Worse Than Death
. She'd really like to know one thing: what did she do
Unless the character is showing It's All About Me
or Moral Myopia
-- which are possible -- this is a sympathetic characterization. An innocent character taken for a crime that no one will identify is common, especially in Revenge by Proxy
, Sins of Our Fathers
, and Criminal Doppelgänger
, but not the only possibility. Disproportionate Retribution
will often inspire it. Even if the crime was real, and the punishment not disproportionate, punishing an amnesiac character tends to come off as wrong. Those with ignorance of the law, stemming child-like innocence
or unfamiliarity with the location
, generally come off almost as well. Especially if You Know What You Did
This almost always occurs when a character tries to Set Right What Once Went Wrong
by killing someone before they commit their crimes (particularly in regards to Hitler's Time Travel Exemption Act
- In the second Terminator movie, they track down the guy who'll invent the chip which leads to the Robot War in the future and Sarah immediatly tries to kill him in front of his family even though he hasn't even began his research (much less known what would come of it). He calls her out on this after the situation's explained, but agrees to help destroy his work.
- In A Christmas Story, After Ralphie's punishment for swearing, he must tell his mother where he heard the word. Not wanting to tell the truth that it was his dad, he blames his friend. Ralphie's mom informs the friend's mother and we hear that friend being smacked and asking "what did I do?" coming from the other end of the phone.
- In The Empire Strikes Back, Han and Chewbacca are being tortured by Vader (Han by electricity and Chewie by sound), and neither have any idea why. Vader was counting on Luke psychically sensing their torture and coming to rescue them.
- Poor Gale has no idea what hit him in the Breaking Bad 3rd season finale.
- Franziska von Karma of Ace Attorney fame likes to whip people for reasons which may or may not be valid. At least once, she whipped Phoenix instead of the actual target.