Created By: MCE on June 4, 2012 Last Edited By: MCE on June 30, 2012

Vehicles Bane

A character can't keep a vehicle intact, frequently having to climb/fall out the wreckage.

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Trope
A trope about a character repeatedly having to crawl/ being thrown out a vehicle that has crashed/ exploded or otherwise loosing their vehicle to bad external influences. If this happens once its bad luck, if it keeps happening they may have to admit they have a problem. Most examples should have a least two broken vehicles, ideally they should have three or more.

Re-Rethink: Considering the existence of the Captain Crash trope I could use this trope for example where is definitely isn't their fault, this could be separated into two categories,

1. Vehicle is destroyed with the character inside

2. Vehicle is destroyed shortly after the character leaves it.

What are people thoughts on this?

Examples:

  • Isaac Clarke of Dead Space and Dead Space 2 has been thrown out of a
    • space shuttle which exploded with him exiting it.
    • (A train has crashed, left him hanging upside down, nearly fallen on him and exploded)
    Isaac: Daina, I need a new route.
    Daina: What happened? I thought we lost you.
    Isaac: Unscheduled stop. Where am I?"
    —Conversation between Isaac and Daina
    • escape pod which knocked him out briefly on landing
    • and a drilling machine when in crashed though a floor.
    • From the dead space 3 trailer a a spaceship explodes during re-entry
  • The point man from the FEAR series doesn't have the best luck with helicopters, two he's been flying in have been taken down by the same person (Alma) and third was blown up in front of him. He also had a minimech nearly fall on top of him after it fell off a bridge with him in...which happened because a helicopter crashed into it and the bridge crumbled. (Alma again) Oh and a drop pod he was in fell out of the sky. (Yet again, Alma)
  • A-Team (series) I seem to recall that basically any car they were driving which wasn't either the Van or Face's corvette was not long for this world.
  • Angel season 5 might count, but I'm not sure. Spike was confirmed to have destroyed like two or three of Angel's car fleet, but as it wasn't shown onscreen, IDK if it counts or not.
  • Stephanie Plum goes through so many cars that Ranger simply writes them off his budget under "Entertainment". His men run a betting pool on how long the latest car will last.
  • The LiveJournal Site Scans Daily inverted this, claiming that Carol Danvers was the mortal enemy of Car's everywhere, apparently due to either hitting someone with, or getting hit by cars a-lot.
  • Usually James Bond wrecks his cars on purpose, but occasionally they get destroyed without his help. In The World Is Not Enough he loses a car to a saw blade wielding helicopter, a Lotus Esprit is destroyed in For Your Eyes Only because the self destruct system is linked to the car alarm. He has also had to escape two airplanes, on on fire (Jinx's fault) and one about to crash into a mountain.
Community Feedback Replies: 20
  • June 4, 2012
    Mauri
    Launchpad Mac Quack from Ducktales and later Darkwing Duck might be the codifier for the self caused crashes.
  • June 4, 2012
    chicagomel
    Angel season 5 might count, but I'm not sure. Spike was confirmed to have destroyed like two or three of Angel's car fleet, but as it wasn't shown onscreen, IDK if it counts or not.
  • June 4, 2012
    HandsomeRob
    The Live Journal Site Scans Daily inverted this, claiming that Carol Danvers was the mortal enemy of Car's everywhere, apparently due to either hitting someone with, or getting hit by cars a-lot.
  • June 4, 2012
    Koveras
    Dunno if it counts but...

    • Harry Dresden from The Dresden Files cannot drive any modern cars because his mere presence jinxes them (wizards tend to have this effect on tech). He only ever drives a pre-WW 2 VW Beetle but manages to damage it in some way in almost every novel until it is destroyed for good in in Changes.
  • June 5, 2012
    Lumpenprole
    Stephanie Plum goes through so many cars that Ranger simply writes them off his budget under "Entertainment". His men run a betting pool on how long the latest car will last.
  • June 5, 2012
    JohnoTheTeacher
    Would the A-Team (series) count? I seem to recall that basically any car they were driving which wasn't either the Van or Face's corvette was not long for this world . . . type 1 mostly.

    (I was a little kid watching this, so I may remember wrong! :) )
  • June 5, 2012
    MCE
    ^ If it was external influences, rather than their own fault it would be a type 1.
  • June 5, 2012
    astryll
    James Bond often has to do this. With the number of expensive cars he's wrecked since he started it's no wonder Q is often reluctant to hand over the years to the next one.
  • June 5, 2012
    dalek955
  • June 5, 2012
    MCE
    ^ Dammit, I asked about this on lost and found and now it turns out to already exist? Do the dead space and fear examples fit the frame work?
  • June 5, 2012
    SuperLlama
    Joesph Joestar being unable to land a plane without crash landing becomes a Running Gag after a while.
    Joseph: Hey, Jotaro. This'll be my third crash landing. Heh, have you ever known anyone that crashed three times?
    Jotaro: I will never fly with you again!
  • June 5, 2012
    Dacilriel
    ^^^^ James Bond as an example of this trope was lampshaded in Golden Eye.

    Natalya Simonova: What is it with you and moving vehicles?

    I think this was after he caused a lot of damage crashing a tank, if I remember correctly.
  • June 6, 2012
    foxley
    External influences might be a new trope, but the other two are covered by Captain Crash.
  • June 6, 2012
    Lumpenprole
    Captain Crash seems to be about people who wreck vehicles while driving/piloting them. In Stephanie Plum's case almost all her cars are destroyed by various causes while she's not in them.
  • June 6, 2012
    TwoGunAngel
    Yeah. And I could also see this working with four-legged transportation as well.
  • June 8, 2012
    MCE
    I'll give it a day or so but there might be enough examples here to launch.
  • June 8, 2012
    Lumpenprole
    linkified Stephanie Plum.

  • June 8, 2012
    nitrokitty
    Hmm, Captain Crash and Drives Like Crazy seem to cover this, but lets see how this plays out.
  • June 9, 2012
    MCE
    It seems to me that Captain Crash and Drives Like Crazy both seem to relate to lack of skill on the part of the driver and lack of awareness of that lack of skill. Vehicles bane examples often have the character in question a reasonably competent driver, its just fate/luck has other ideas. Some times their not even in the vehicle when it meets it end, just the fact they were in it a some point is enough to doom said vehicle.

    In the Stephanie Plum he's not even in the vehicle when it is destroyed. The dead space examples are caused by equipment failure, somebody else driving and enemy damage. The F.E.A.R examples are mostly caused by enemy fire (both accidental and on purpose).

    Some Bond vehicles 'die' in the line of duty.
  • June 30, 2012
    planswalker
    • Halo 2 included this as a gameplay upgrade from the original. In the original, vehicles could not be destroyed, although they would respawn in multiplayer if left abandoned long enough. In the sequel and all following games, the vehicles could be destroyed whether or not the player was inside. This meant that you'd see a lot of players jump out of a vehicle once the engine was on fire right before slamming it into a wall to deny it to the opponent.
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