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[[caption-width-right:318:Your Fault! No, ''your'' fault!.]]

-> '''Jack''': Wait a minute though, I only stole the gold to get my cow back from you!\\
'''Little Red Riding Hood''': ''(to the baker)'' So it's your fault!\\
'''Jack''': Yes!\\
'''Baker''': No, it isn't! I'd have kept those beans, but our house was cursed. [[VainSorceress She]] made us get a cow to get the curse reversed!\\
'''Witch''': It's your father's fault that the curse got placed and the place got cursed in the first place!
--> -- ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods''

This is when something has GoneHorriblyWrong and it's time to determine who is at fault, but the consequences for this blame can wreck careers and reputations, or even get people killed. Either that or just stubborn pride.

So when someone is blamed, that person tries to pass off the blame to another plausible person, and that person either tries to put the blame back on the first person or pass it to someone else. Essentially the blame is now like a game of "hot potato", hence we call it the Blame Game.

This can happen in comedy as well as drama. In RealLife, a staple of politics, right after any tragedy. Also common among young children when somebody has done something naughty. As well as every other age group.

The truth of the matter is either the original accused is at fault, or some of/the whole group are at fault. On rare occasions it really was an unforeseen person or event.

Compare NeverMyFault, when someone consistently tries to avoid taking responsibility for his or her mistakes.

'''Remember, this isn't just trying to pass off blame once. There has to be at least one return volley.'''


[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* Played for laughs in ''Anime/SonicX'' episode 46:
-->'''Eggman''': I could have got the Chaos Emerald if it wasn't for you two lead heads!
-->'''Bocoe''': Why is it our fault?
-->'''Decoe''': Why do we always end up losing the blame game?
** Doubly funny when you realize that, because he built and programmed them, [[FridgeLogic it's entirely Eggman's fault that they're "lead heads" in the first place]].

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* In ''ComicBook/TheSmurfs'' comic book version of "The Astro Smurf" (and its AnimatedAdaptation), when Astro Smurf climbs up what's supposed to be a greased pole effortlessly and Grandpa Swoof finds out that it wasn't greased, one Swoof blames another for not greasing it, and that Swoof blames another, and so on.

* In the first ''{{Film/Toy Story}}'' movie, Woody and Buzz pull this when their EscalatingWar gets them stranded at a gas station. It loses track a little by the end:
---> '''Woody:''' ''It's all your fault!''
---> '''Buzz:''' ''*outraged*'' ''MY-my'' fault? If you hadn't pushed me out of the window in the first place...
---> '''Woody:''' ''*fumes indignant*'' Yeeeaaahh? Well, if ''you'' hadn't shown up with your stupid little cardboard spaceship and taken away everything that was important to me...
---> '''Buzz:''' Don't talk to me about importance! [[ItMakesJustAsMuchSenseInContext Because of you, the future of this entire universe is in jeopardy!]]

* Four generals at the end of a film version of ''The Charge of the Light Brigade'' all try to avoid blame for the order for the charge.
* ''Film/MysteryMen'' features a blamethrower that ''makes'' a couple groups of [[{{Mook}} mooks]] do this, allowing the heroes to beat them while they're distracted.
* Lampshaded by Joe Cabot in ''Film/ReservoirDogs''.
-->"Well, let me tell you a joke: Five guys sitting in a bull pen, San Quentin. Wondering how the fuck they got there. What'd we do wrong? What should we've done? What didn't we do? It's your fault, my fault, his fault. All that bullshit. Finally, someone comes up with the idea, wait a minute, while we were planning this [[TheCaper caper]], all we did was sit around and tell fucking jokes. Got the message?"

* In ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'', every time a plan formulated by the Auditors goes wrong, some time is spent on this one. The outcome inevitably goes like this: the plan was a group effort, therefore it's everyone's fault, and if it's everyone's fault, it's no one's fault, because the amount of blame that attaches is as close to nothing as makes no difference. They're very corporate that way.
* In ''Literature/TheBible'' (Genesis 3), {{God}} confronts Adam about his having disobeyed His commandment not to eat the ForbiddenFruit. Adam says, "The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit from the tree, and I ate," thus passing the blame not only to Eve, but to God. Eve, in turn, says, "The serpent tricked me, and I ate." God punishes all three of them.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* In an episode of ''Series/TheTudors'', Cromwell and another lord try to pass off blame for Henry's displeasure with Anne of Cleves. Unsurprising, given that they could well [[OffWithHisHead get in quite a lot of trouble]] if the king's wrath falls on them.
* In a skit on ''Series/MrShow'', a group of film executives each try to pass the buck for greenlighting ''Coupon: The Movie'', an abysmal flop. Each time the buck is passed, the group starts chanting the name of the new accusee, until the last man in the room realizes that he's chanting his own name.
* This seems to be the main skill that they are looking for on ''Series/TheApprentice''. UsefulNotes/DonaldTrump is most likely to send home the Project Manager of the losing team, so [=PMs=] will find someone else to blame for the loss.

* As Music/{{Skyclad}} put it in "Eirenarch",
--> Successes have fathers -- but failure's a bastard.
* Music/KanyeWest has a song called "Blame Game", about a couple that doesn't get along.
-->Let's play the blame game, I love you, more\\
Let's play the blame game for sure!

* An episode of the ShowWithinAShow on ''Radio/AdventuresInOdyssey'' deals with a cat burglar who pleads "Not Guilty By Reason Of Temptation": "The devil made me do it!" Investigators interview several witnesses, including the above-mentioned Adam and Eve, who have also tried to shift the blame for their sins to the devil.

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* Debriefings in ''TabletopGame/{{Paranoia}}'', unless you [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder kill everyone else first]] and [[DeceasedFallGuyGambit perjure yourself on a Biblical scale, without needing to worry about their testimony]].
* ''TabletopGame/AyeDarkOverlord'' is made of this trope. Literally: one player plays the [[EvilOverlord Dark Overlord]], and the rest play a group of goblins who just failed yet another mission. The entire gameplay consist of deflecting blame on another player through making up excuses. It is a [[LiteralMetaphor literal blame game]].

* The second act of ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods'' has the songs "Your Fault" (where the protagonists try to name the source of the problem) and part of "Last Midnight" (where the Witch calls the protagonists out on wasting time placing blame rather than solving the problem). It's also a DarkReprise of the song "Ever After," where everyone had congratulated themselves on their bravery and cleverness to find their HappilyEverAfter.
* The musical ''Theatre/{{Titanic}}'' has the ship's captain, owner, and builder singing "The Blame".
* [[UsefulNotes/DichterAndDenker Friedrich Schiller's]] ''Theatre/IntrigueAndLove'' ends like this, until the hero's father finally accepts responsibility for his actions.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* A strip from WebComic/CtrlAltDel has a team of players from VideoGame/LeagueOfLegends playing the blame game. When someone actually takes responsibility for why they lost, the entire game crashes due to the breaking of the blame game that powers the servers.


[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/TheAmazingWorldOfGumball''
** In the episode "The Responsible," the Blame Game is played as Gumball is too scared of his mother to take the blame for Anais flooding the house by accident, so he blames Darwin, who in turn blames Anais, since she actually did flood the house. Anais, however, blames their mother for leaving Gumball in charge, who, in turn, blames their father for not finding a proper babysitter. Richard, not having anyone else to blame, blames the internet. [[SureLetsGoWithThat Everyone else agrees.]]
** In the episode "The Prank," after the prank war between Gumball, Darwin, and Richard goes a little too far and wrecks the house, Nicole angrily demands to know who caused all the damage. All three of them immediately yell "It was him!" and point at each other.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'' episode "The Chase," Katara blames Toph for them being on the run for days without sleep because she never helps them set up camp when they land, Toph blames Appa for leaving a trail of shed fur, and Aang blames Toph for making Appa carry extra weight after she joined the group, leading to fun exchanges like this one:
-->'''Toph:''' You're blaming me for this?
-->'''Aang:''' No, she's not blaming you.
-->'''Katara:''' No, I'm blaming her!
* In the ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales1987'' episode [[Recap/DuckTalesS1E5NothingToFear Nothing to Fear]], Huey, Dewey and Louie get into an argument about responsibility when Nightmare!Quackenbush shows up.
-->'''Huey''': Whose idea was it to not to do our homework?
-->'''Dewey and Louie''': YOURS!
-->'''Huey''': Whose idea was it to ''listen'' to my idea?
* ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'': The first ChristmasEpisode explodes into a violent one of these when the audience is dissatisfied with the [[PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad the changes made to the yearly Christmas pageant]].
-->'''Priest Maxi:''' This is the most godawful piece of crap I've ever seen.
-->'''Mr Garrison:''' Hey, you're the ones who made it this way!
-->'''Priest Maxi:''' Yes, because the Jews said it couldn't be Christian.
-->'''Gerald:''' It wasn't ''our'' idea to get rid of Santa Claus!
-->'''Nature Activist:''' All you bastards ruined Christmas!
-->'''Audience Member:''' Damn treehugger! ''*pounces activist, riot begins*''

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Politicians, political parties, and even countries seem to love to play the Blame Game at each other for all the political problems that they have to face, even if all or even no parties are at fault. Even if it isn't political, the Blame Game can still occur whenever an argument devolves into an argument about who started the original argument. We won't list examples; that would be [[SelfDemonstratingArticle playing the Blame Game in itself]].
* In a corporate environment, this is called "blamestorming". A Direct TV commercial even uses that phrase.
* "[[PlaygroundSong Who stole the cookies from the cookie jar?]]"
* Everything associated with the ButNotTooBlack trope. Especially when concerning the lack of dark skinned models in the fashion industry, or the entertainment industry as a whole. The industry blames the agencies for the lack of hiring, the agencies blame the industry for not booking said models, thus causing the agency not to hire them. It becomes a "Chicken or the Egg" argument.
* This happens whenever anyone complains about the types of movies being made today, whether they're arguing about unoriginal ideas, racial stereotypes, or anything else. Is it the movie industry's fault for making those kinds of movies, or is it the people's fault for making those kinds of movies popular?