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Beauty Is Never Tarnished Threshold
A significant, but not life threatening injury makes it super likely characters get killed.


(permanent link) added: 2012-12-29 18:21:50 sponsor: Earnest (last reply: 2012-12-29 18:21:50)

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Yeah, needs a better name.

Basically, Beauty Is Never Tarnished means that it's unlikely for a character to get meaningfully scarred beyond scratches. However, if a character gets a pretty bad injury that isn't immediately life threatening-- like losing a finger or a pretty bad scar across the face, basically anything that takes chunks out of them-- they are much more likely to die. Why? Maybe the author thinks it's sort of a mercy; the character doesn't have to live permanently scarred. Maybe they get killed off because caring for them would realistically doom the rest of the cast.

Whatever the reason, the presence of this trope ends up creating a sort of threshold for survival that only the (relatively) unharmed can ever hope to cross.

Compare Scars Are Forever.

  • Averted in House of Wax, where the lead girl loses a finger yet makes it to the end.
  • In Sin City, Marv's case worker Lucille loses a forearm to a cannibal only to get killed later. Notable in that the sadist was careful to make sure the amputation was clean and she'd live.
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