Created By: rt2012 on January 25, 2012 Last Edited By: rt2012 on September 15, 2013

Jerkass Butt Monkey

A Butt Monkey who deserves everything they get

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Trope
This is a Butt Monkey whose misfortune is cheered by the audience because he or she is a total Jerk Ass, if not an outright villain. Similar to Asshole Victim, except they don't die. Examples would include Harry and Marv from the Home Alone flicks, Dolores Umbridge and Draco Malfoy from Harry Potter, and Dr. Robotnik from Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog.
Community Feedback Replies: 26
  • January 25, 2012
    Jordan
    I've tried to launch this kind of thing in the past, never seemed to get replies. I think I was going to call it Karmic Butt Monkey or something like that.

    I've noticed that Ted Baxter characters often fall into this- i.e. Sam The Eagle on The Muppet Show and Malvolio in Twelfth Night.
  • January 25, 2012
    Psi001
  • January 25, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
    "whose misfortune is cheered by the audience"

    Take that out. It's basically asking for this to be subjective. This just needs to be In Universe a clear jerk getting things happen to him/her.

  • January 25, 2012
    ZombieAladdin
    • Eric Cartman in South Park seems to get the worst of most situations, but he tends to either cause or exascerbate them anyway.

    • Eddy in Ed Edd N Eddy gets picked on by the rest of the kids in the neighborhood, though the cause is that he keeps trying to scam them out of their money. Eddy frequently winds up poorer than before he starts his scams.
  • January 25, 2012
    Psi001
    Granted such a trope also tends to overlap as a Jerkass Woobie to many. May become Unintentionally Sympathetic if the Butt Monkey part overlaps too much the Jerk Ass part.

    • Urpgor of The Dreamstone is arguably the one genuinely evil Urpney Zordrak has, being treacherous, bullying and sometimes just outright psychotic towards other Mooks below him. He also seems to get the most abuse from his master and tends to suffer just as much as the others in failed schemes.
    • Squidward started off this way in Spongebob Squarepants, being a naricisstic grouch who hated his neighbours somewhat disproportionately (and sometimes played cruel pranks to be rid of them). As the show became more sadistic however, Squidward's treatment became more disproportionate and his hatred towards Spongebob became more justified as he increasingly made his life a genuine hell.
    • Starscream (at least his G1 form) in Transformers is the infamously treacherous little Bastard Understudy of the Decepticons. He's also a cowardly Smug Snake that takes a lot of comical poundings, with most of his defiancies or attempts at usurping Megatron's position failing miserably.
  • January 25, 2012
    elwoz
    This sounds awfully close to Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist -- the only difference I see right now is that this character isn't necessarily the protagonist.
  • January 25, 2012
    FrodoGoofballCoTV
    ^There might be a valid trope here where the antagonist is a Harmless Villain and Butt Monkey / Chew Toy, but it's OK to cheer their misfortune because they're also a Jerkass and thus arguably just getting what they deserve.

    Also compare Jerkass Woobie, where being a Butt Monkey / The Woobie makes a Jerk Ass more sympathetic.
  • January 25, 2012
    Bisected8
  • January 25, 2012
    ParadiscaCorbasi
    • The Titular Character in Dan Vs
  • January 25, 2012
    azul120
  • January 26, 2012
    rt2012
    Peter Griffin from Family Guy
  • January 26, 2012
    HaggisMcCrablice
    Who could forget Candace Flynn?
  • January 26, 2012
    Ryuuma
    Jaken from Inu Yasha.
  • January 26, 2012
    Psi001
    ^^^ Peter Griffin flip flops with this since he is also a frequent Karma Houdini, but yes the majority of times he is made to suffer he deserves it. The majority of the Family Guy cast are similar (par perhaps Meg and sometimes Brian).

    • Wile E Coyote plays with this. As Chuck Jones stated Wile is supposed to be sympathetic in the disproportionate torture and abuse he goes through, however another stated rule is that Wile could give up on chasing the Road Runner any time he wants, implying he brings it all on himself.
    • The Cartman example is played with in Scott Tenorman Must Die in which Cartman is bullied and humiliated by an older kid with no provokation. His attempts to get revenge all end up with him getting tortured again, with even Kyle and Stan later siding with Scott against Cartman out of sheer spite. However by the time you almost end up feeling sorry for Cartman, he reveals a deadly gambit against Scott involving his parents and a chilli cookoff, at which point we realise why Cartman is rarely made to win in the first place.
  • January 26, 2012
    ZombieAladdin
    That episode was followed up later when Scott organizes all the Gingers of South Park, whom Cartman relentlessly teased and bullied, to sic Mecha-Streisand on him. It got kind of complicated...and I forgot what happened to Cartman at the end of that one.
  • January 27, 2012
    Rognik
    Total Drama, Revenge of the Island has Scott. Only 4 episodes in, but it's pretty much established that he's a jerk, and virtually every scene has him getting injured in some manner.
  • June 25, 2012
    Noah1
  • March 23, 2013
    313Bluestreak
    James The Red Engine from Thomas The Tank Engine suffers from a lot of misfortunes such as getting himself into a mess with tar trucks, getting himself dizzy on the turntable, and being stung by a bee. Most of this happens due to him being rude and arrogant towards the other engines.
  • March 23, 2013
    Psi001
    ^^ Gordon the Big Engine under similar situations. Some others such as Henry, Sir Handel and even Thomas himself started off as such, but tamed into more well intentioned (if still sometimes luckless) characters.
  • March 23, 2013
    azul120
    Candace from Phineas And Ferb isn't much of one on the Jerkass side. Even though she tries snitching on her siblings, she still cares for them. Heck, a lot of the time, she's straight Butt Monkey if not Cosmic Plaything.
  • March 23, 2013
    Tuckerscreator
    Related to Laser Guided Karma.
  • March 23, 2013
    VPhantom
    Compare with the Chew Toy; sometimes they overlap, though.
  • March 23, 2013
    oneuglybunny
    "Jerkass" is a trope. "Butt Monkey" is a trope. In theory, combining the two should equal another trope, but it doesn't always work like that. Plus, this comes awful close to Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist; perhaps "Jerkass Butt Monkey" is a better name for the same principle. Motion to Merge.

    Western Animation
    • Alexandra Cabot is often a subversive glory-hog in the Josie And The Pussy Cats cartoons. Her efforts to displace or humiliate Josie always backfire. However, though Alexandra dislikes Josie, she abhors villains.
  • September 15, 2013
    313Bluestreak
  • September 15, 2013
    BibsDibs
    Live Action TV

    Web Comics
  • September 15, 2013
    DAN004
    • Squidward and Plankton from Spongebob Squarepants. Most of the time, they deserved everything bad that goes to them because they're such an unrepentant asshole, but sometimes they don't.
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