[[quoteright:315:[[WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/monkey2_3627.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:315:[[CardCarryingVillain A villainous pose]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WgjcvxQjpKA can't hold a candle]] to a NoHoldsBarredBeatdown.]]

->'''Nute Gunray''': The war is over! Lord Sidious promised us peace! We only wanted--\\
''[before Gunray can finish, Anakin finishes him off]''
-->-- ''Franchise/StarWars: Film/RevengeOfTheSith''

A subtrope of EvilVersusEvil, this is for when a previous villain, whether a significant or minor one, is made significantly less of a threat (or in some cases outright killed) with the help of the next villain. The previous villain is put aside, to [[TitleDrop make way for the new villains]].

This often implies that the new villain is more competent, more evil, or for whatever other reason more threatening, but not necessarily. Cases where the new villain is ''less'' threatening instead can qualify as this trope, too. May be the result of BigDamnVillains.

Compare AlwaysABiggerFish, which sometimes overlaps with this but not always and SortingAlgorithmOfEvil, and BaitAndSwitchBoss. Also TheWorfEffect, depending on how they take them out. In video games, this is often the TrueFinalBoss.

Contrast HijackedByGanon.
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!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Anime and Manga]]
* In ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'', Kyubey is, for lack of a better term, unstoppable. Killing him is utterly useless, trying to out-gambit him is nigh-impossible, and while [[spoiler: Madoka's sacrifice]] denies him victory on his terms, he ultimately still gets exactly what he wants. Come ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagicaTheMovieRebellion'', [[spoiler: [[MadGod Akuma Homura]] reduces him to a quivering, traumatized mess by forcing him to hold all the curses of the world.]]
* In ''Manga/DragonBall'', after General Blue returns having failed to kill Goku, he is given a chance if he can defeat Mercenary Tao. After his psychic paralysis fails to have effect on him, Tao proceeds to kill him with a single strike to the head. Using his ''tongue''.
* In the android saga of ''Anime/DragonBallZ'', things are bad enough with three NighInvulnerable killing machines running around. [[FromBadToWorse Then Piccolo encounters a town's worth of slaughtered people]], and the [[SuperSoldier creature Cell]] who wants to absorb said androids to get stronger.
* This is how Phibrizo reveals his identity in ''LightNovel/{{Slayers}}'', by killing current villain Gaav right out of the blue, and after he was already giving Lina and the others an increasingly tough time.
* ''Manga/YuGiOh'' has Yami Marik do this during Battle City, taking over his normal half and then eliminating Yami Bakura who's working with a remnant of regular Marik's personality to take him down.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Comic Books ]]
* After Keith Giffen took over the second series of ''ComicBook/AmethystPrincessOfGemworld'', he did a storyline where Carnelian is killed off to make way for the return of the first series' BigBad Dark Opal. This lasts for one page in that issue and two pages in the following issue before Dark Opal himself is dispatched to make way for the new villains, The Child and Flaw.
* In the buildup to the Great Darkness Saga in the ''Comicbook/{{Legion of Super-Heroes}}'' (which Keith Giffen also worked on -- he seems to love this trope), previous {{Big Bad}}s Mordru and the Time Trapper are found beaten and helpless to show how bad [[spoiler:{{ComicBook/Darkseid}}]] is.
* In ''ComicBook/UltimateSpiderMan'' the first thing Mysterio did when he showed up was shoot the Kingpin out of a window.
* In ''ComicBook/FantasticFour'' when the Marquis of Death appeared he set Doctor Doom on fire and tossed him into prehistory. Unsurprisingly, he came back.
* One of ComicBook/{{Onslaught}}'s first actions was to beat TheJuggernaut to a pulp and hurl him all the way to New Jersey. [[spoiler: Mostly to get back at Juggernaut for the crap he did to Professor Xavier all their lives as Onslaught turned out to be Xavier's dark side run amok.]] At the time the issue was written the writers had no idea who or what Onslaught was, they just wanted to demonstrate he was a threat.
* When trying to establish Kaine as a credible threat during ''ComicBook/TheCloneSaga'', the writers had him kill off longtime {{Spider-Man}} foe Doctor Octopus. [[DeathIsCheap It didn't take.]]
* ''ComicBook/LesLegendaires'' did this in the [[CerebusSyndrome Anathos Cycle]] by having both [[spoiler:[[ArchEnemy Darkhell]] and [[JerkassGod the Guardian]]]] being obliterated by [[GodOfEvil Anathos]] to show how bad the new villain was (though this had already been established by having him effortlessly delivering a NoHoldsBarredBeatdown to the good guys).
* Toyed with in ''ComicBook/CaptainAmerica'', where ComicBook/RedSkull was assassinated by [[ComicBook/BuckyBarnes the Winter Soldier]] during Creator/EdBrubaker's first issue, leading many readers to think the writer was playing this trope straight. Instead, it was revealed that [[SharingABody Red Skull had survived inside the body of the Winter Soldier's employer]], setting up one of the series' longest running PlotThreads.
* For a brief period in the early '90s ''Comicbook/XMen'' comics, the main villains were the Upstarts, a group of bratty rich mutants who competed with each other to kill other mutants in a "contest" sponsored by an [[TheOmniscient omniscient]] mutant called the Gamesmaster; among the casualties numbered the Reavers, the Hellions, Sebastian Shaw, Emma Frost, Selene, and even Comicbook/{{Magneto}} himself. This plotline was not well received, all the dead villains but the Hellions came back, and most of the Upstarts ended up meeting ignominious ends themselves.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Film ]]
* Despite supplying the page quote, [[spoiler:Anakin killing Gunray and his minions]] in ''Franchise/StarWars: Film/RevengeOfTheSith'' could be seen as an inversion of this. It was a prequel after all, so it was more like Make Way for the Old Villains... but well in the story's timeline he is the newer villain.
* A non-lethal example is in ''Film/BatmanBegins'', when vicious crime boss [[SmugSnake Carmine Falcone]] is trying to {{blackmail}} corrupt psychiatrist Jonathan Crane... [[spoiler:who in turn sprays fear toxin in Falcone's face then and there, forcing Falcone into an intense panic attack and leaving him insane for the rest of the movie]].
* In ''Film/JurassicParkIII'', the Spinosaurus kills a T. rex [[WorfEffect for no reason other than to announce how much more powerful and mean she is than the last big evil dinosaur.]]
* In ''GameraVsGuiron'', the titular Guiron is introduced by cutting a space [[GameraVsGyaos Gyaos]] to pieces.
* In ''Film/GuardiansOfTheGalaxy'', [[BigBad Ronan]] offhandedly kills the Other, [[GreaterScopeVillain Thanos']] [[MouthOfSauron representative]] from ''Film/{{The Avengers|2012}}'', for annoying him during his meeting with Thanos.
* ''Film/JemAndTheHolograms'' ends with TheStinger where antagonist Erica Raymond recruits The Misfits to challenge Jem.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature ]]
* Calvin [[spoiler:killing William Henry Harrison]] in ''Literature/TheTalesOfAlvinMaker''.
* In ''MagicTheGathering'', Volrath, the BigBad (actually TheDragon, but for all intents and purposes) of the Weatherlight saga is missing and presumed dead after a climactic showdown near the end of the first half of the story. When he reappears midway through the second half, in sufficiently badass and grandiose fashion, it's only to be killed in a one on one duel to the death by [[spoiler: Crovax]], who becomes the new Ascendent Evincar.
* Happens in the ''Literature/WarriorCats'' novel ''The Darkest Hour'', the final book of the original series. [[spoiler:Tigerstar, the main villain of the series, obtains the assistance of an insane cat called Scourge, and his followers "[=BloodClan=]", in the prologue. Scourge isn't mentioned again until the supposed FinalBattle, where Tigerstar calls him for aid. However, after the protagonist Firestar tells Scourge about Tigerstar's treachery, Scourge realizes that Tigerstar is a terrible boss to have. Stating "Nothing will control me", Scourge rips Tigerstar apart, killing him many times in one blow. Scourge goes on to become the villain of the book.]]
* In ''Literature/TheBookOfTheDunCow'', StarterVillain Ebenezer Rat dies in a fight with the Basilisks, who serve the novel's major villain, Cockatrice.
* In the ''Literature/NewJediOrder'' series, two of the alien species nearly wiped out by [[OutsideContextProblem the Yuuzhan Vong]] are the Yevetha and the Ssi-ruuk, two races with similar, though less vicious, [=MOs=] to the Vong, and which had served as villains in previous books.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Live Action TV ]]
* In ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'', Species 8472 is introduced by destroying an armada of Borg Cubes.
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'':
** The Anointed One (a little kid vampire who was held over from season one) is [[spoiler:shoved into a cage and hoisted into sunlight early in season two by Spike]].
** Spike gets similar treatment in this a quarter into season four where he returns ready to cause trouble for Buffy, only to be tasered and captured by members of the Initiative. He escapes from them in the next episode, but has a chip planted in his head to make sure he can't harm the heroes again, which wound up sending him directly into [[BadassDecay a certain other trope]].
** A few episodes later, Initiative professor [[spoiler:Maggie Walsh]] was impaled on a spike and skewered [[KarmicDeath by Adam, the monster she created.]]
** Twilight killed the Master and Ethan Rayne by proxy.
* ''Series/MightyMorphinPowerRangers'': At the beginning of season two, Lord Zedd, Rita's superior, appears to relieve her of command after one failure too many. Her minions quickly jump ship as he sticks her in another dumpster and launches her into space. She comes back, of course...
* ''Series/PowerRangersZeo'': Rita and Zedd are, in turn, ousted from the moon by the arrival of the Machine Empire. They get their revenge at the end of the season, but then (apart from a cameo in the ''Turbo'' movie) disappear until ''Space''.
* This is done to [[spoiler: Captain Crais]] by Scorpius at the end of the first season of ''Series/{{Farscape}}''. In fact, it's done in three different ways: first, he manages to convince [[spoiler: Crais's]] own bodyguards into obeying his orders and putting their boss in the [[MindProbe Aurora Chair]]; secondly, he takes over [[spoiler: Crais's]] command carrier and has him stripped of rank and office; finally, just to drive home the fact that Scorpius is well and truly in control, [[spoiler: Crais]] tries to kill him and ends up having his ass kicked for his troubles.
* In ''Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000'', Pearl [[spoiler:suffocating a baby-fied Forrester to death, and turning out to be more dangerous]].
* In ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** The old Daleks allow themselves to be killed by the new Paradigm ones in [[Recap/DoctorWhoS31E3VictoryoftheDaleks "Victory of the Daleks"]], agreeing that they're impure and should be destroyed. This doesn't actually stick, however, due to the redesign meeting near-universal scorn: the [=RTD=]-era models have remained the standard ever since.
** The Daleks were also subject to this in the Literature/EighthDoctorAdventures, as they end brutally killed by Krotons. Yes, Krotons. Make way for the [[NotSoHarmlessVillain sixties monsters only remembered as a joke]]...
** At one point it was thought that rights issues would have prevented the Daleks being used in the 2005 series -- in which case, it would have been revealed that they'd been wiped out by the Toclafane.
* Happens in ''Series/StargateSG1'' when the Replicators start picking off the Goa'uld, who, up until that point, had been formidable enemies.
* ''Series/{{Heroes}}'' loved to do this. [[ArchnemesisDad Arthur]] announced his prescence by killing [[AGodAmI Adam]], and shortly afterward killing [[MindRape Maury.]] Arthur in turn was killed off by [[SerialKiller Sylar]], who had previously disposed of [[FourEyesZeroSoul Bob]]. Then [[KnightTemplar Danko]] was killed by [[KnifeNut Edgar]] on behalf of [[ManipulativeBastard Samuel]]. And that's not even counting all the minor villains killed by Sylar.
* [[KnightOfCerebus Nukus]] in ''Series/BigBadBeetleBorgs'' was careful to get rid of [[BigBad Vexor]] and his minions before taking over as the main antagonist.
* ''Series/{{Mutant X}}'' - in the final episode of season 1, new BigBad Gabriel Ashlocke imprisions original BigBad Mason Eckhart and takes over his mutant-hunting facility for his own ends.
* ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'':
** In the season six finale, [[spoiler:God!Castiel]] blows up [[spoiler:the ArchangelRaphael]] with the snap of his fingers.
** Two episodes later, [[spoiler:God!Castiel is momentarily taken over by Leviathans and unintentionally slaughters a room of innocent people, causing him to have a HeelRealization and voluntarily de-power himself. He is then ripped apart from the inside by the Leviathans.]]
* Season 3 of ''Series/SleepyHollow'' literally opens with this, as in its first scene, new BigBad Pandora confronts [[TheHeavy the Horseman]], [[CurbStompBattle defeats him with a wave of her hand]], and [[SealedEvilInACan locks him in her box]] to be used as a power source.
* ''Series/OnceUponATime'''s villains in Season 2, Greg and Tamara, are promptly rendered useless with the introduction of Peter Pan in Season 3. They were working for him, but had been duped about his whole plan. They betray him and are promptly killed for it.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* Generation Next lived up to their name by taking out Special K, The Christopher Street Connection and The Ring Crew Express ''before'' going on to have a successful match in their Wrestling/RingOfHonor debut.
* Wrestling/MercedesMartinez willingly stayed out of Valkyrie's way after it interrupted her match with [[Wrestling/KiaStevens Amazing Kong]] in its debut. They caught up to her after about eleven shows but points for being GenreSavvy.
* One of the first things Lord Siniestro did in The World Wrestling league was take Legio away from El Profe. Not long after this his direction lead to them traumatizing and hospitalizing El Niche of Los Rabiosos, though Rabiosos had become {{face}}s by default at that point. Around the same time "La [[TakeThat Verdadera]] Revolución" made their debut as part of an ambush on Hiram Tua, who held the Mega Television Title Belt for the dominant PowerStable Gentlemen's Club.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/{{Super Robot Wars Z}}2: Rebirth Chapter'', [[spoiler: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHkSmu91PRc Uther does this to Gaioh]].]]
* ''VideoGame/RuneScape'''s "Ritual of the Mahjarrat" quest officially, and properly, introduces the Dragonkin by having them [[spoiler: gang up on a recently renewed and overpowered Lucien by [[TheWorfEffect kicking him to the curb]] and [[ImpaledWithExtremePrejudice impaling him with his own staff]].]]
* In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'', [[MegaCorp Shinra]] is rendered much less of a threat after Sephiroth appears and kills its president.
* The ''Franchise/KingdomHearts'' series has this happen a couple of times. The first was [[Disney/SleepingBeauty Maleficent]] from [[VideoGame/KingdomHeartsI the first game]] being ousted (but not killed) by Organization XIII in ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsII''. Then played with in ''[[VideoGame/KingdomHeartsBirthBySleep Birth By Sleep]]'' where we find out that she was slightly manipulated by [[BigBad Xehanort]] (of whom the leader of Org. XIII, Xemnas, is his Nobody) who told her about the Princesses of Heart. Then in ''[[VideoGame/KingdomHearts3DDreamDropDistance Dream Drop Distance]]'' [[spoiler: the trope happens again with both Xemnas and "Ansem" Seeker of Darkness (the Heartless of the aforementioned Xehanort and ''other'' BigBad of the first game) being DemotedToDragon to Xehanort.]] And even in [[RuleOfThree the first game]], Maleficent herself was manipulated by Xehanort's Heartless. Chances are that in these games it's ether this trope or HijackedByGanon with Xehanort.
* ''Franchise/StarCraft'' has multiple instances of this trope:
** [[TheFederation The Confederacy]], who were the main villains for most of the Terran campaign in the original game, are eventually obliterated when their political opponent Arcturus Mengsk unleashes the [[HordeOfAlienLocusts Zerg Swarm]] on their home planet. This event mark the beginning of Mengsk's MoralEventHorizon, setting up his transition from pragmatic RebelLeader to TheEmperor and the franchise's [[HumansAreTheRealMonsters human]] BigBad.
** Mengsk himself suffers this in ''Brood War'', where the [[TheWarOfEarthlyAggression UED]] establish themselves as a threat by turning him into their punching bag for most of their campaign and eventually overthrowing him. He ''does'' eventually manage to get back in power however, and is still around by the second game, while the UED is obliterated at the end of ''Brood War''.
** Subverted in hindsight in the second game, where [[spoiler:Amon's agents]] scheme to help the heroes take down Kerrigan, since despite being the biggest villain at this point she is [[spoiler:the only one who can potentially ruin his plans]]. They do manage to considerably weaken her, but rather than be killed, she does a HeelFaceTurn, and eventually [[RedemptionPromotion becomes considerably more powerful than she ever was as a villain]].
* ''Videogame/SuperMarioRPG'' begins with the classic showdown between Mario and Bowser - and then Bowser's castle gets hijacked by the Smithy gang, and everyone within is sent flying. Bowser teams up with Mario for the first time in video game history to take down Smithy and reclaim his castle.
* In the first route of Hentai RPG ''[[Creator/AliceSoft Sengoku Rance]]'', shit hits the fan after all the gourds break. TheLegionsOfHell [[TheWorfEffect Worf]] every unconquered house in a dozen or so turns. You then have to capture international territories [[ChokepointGeography at the far end of the map]] before you can have a go at the TrueFinalBoss. At that point, all you can do is [[SaveScumming reload your save]] and hope the RandomNumberGod rolls in your favor.
* ''VideoGame/StreetFighterV'' reveals that [[spoiler:TheIlluminati, the antagonist organization of VideoGame/StreetFighterIII, was involved in the events that led to the final end of Shadoloo.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Web Video ]]
* ''WebVideo/IncognitoCinemaWarriorsXP'': Comically ineffectual, possibly senile Dr. Harrison Blackwood, who has been holding Rick and the 'bots captive, is [[spoiler:knocked out and shipped out for brainwashing in episode four by Jonathan Kincaid]], who promptly reveals that he can shut down the 'bots, give Rick a brain aneurysm with the press of a button, and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking reconnect calls through the viewscreen after being hung up on]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation ]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'', the "evil monkey" getting a NoHoldsBarredBeatdown from Dylan [Brian's son] is a clear case of this. While [[spoiler:the monkey later turns out to be a nice guy]], up until that point he had been a villain, albeit minor. And, in that episode, the point was to show that Dylan was going to be harder to deal with than the monkey.
* In the second season of ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'', [[MagnificentBastard Princess Azula's]] first episode has her telling [[AntiVillain Zuko]] and [[CoolOldGuy Iroh]] of their fugitive status and almost managing to capture them.
* ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice'' begins its second season with a species called the Kroloteans secretly infiltrating Earth, before they're finished off by an unknown "Competitor" after three episodes. PlayedWith because these new foes are actually allies of [[OmniscientCouncilOfVagueness the Light]], the previously-established BigBad of the series.
* ''WesternAnimation/Ben10UltimateAlien'' played straight ''and'' inverted this trope at the same time in its finale: [[spoiler:when [[EldritchAbomination Diagon]] arrives on Earth, he ends up, after a brief fight with Ben, killing previous villain [[HeroAntagonist Sir George]]... and is almost immediately then killed and absorbed by [[TheStarscream Vilgax]], Ben's long date ArchEnemy, who assumes the role of TrueFinalBoss for the remaining of this finale]].
* Subverted in season 4 of WesternAnimation/TeenTitans, where season 1 and 2 BigBad [[DiabolicalMastermind Slade]], after being DemotedToDragon for the whole season following a DealWithTheDevil, is apparently double-crossed and disposed of by his boss [[{{Satan}} Trigon]]. Turns out Slade saw it coming and [[CrazyPrepared made sure he would be able to escape]], allowing him to make an EnemyMine with the heroes and to get what he wanted from all of this. By the end of the season, Slade is alive and free to scheme again, while Trigon has been obliterated by his daughter.
* WesternAnimation/{{Danny Phantom}}'s ''WesternAnimation/TheUltimateEnemy'' played with this trope. Upon being separated from Danny Fenton, the ghost Danny turned malevolent and stripped Vlad of his ghost half, followed by merging with it to become Dark Danny. He then goes on to torment Danny's RoguesGallery.
* In the second season of WesternAnimation/{{Wander Over Yonder}} Lord Dominator makes her first appearance. [[PsychopathicManchild Lord Hater]], the [[BigBad Big Bad]] of the entirety of Season 1 had been for the most part a [[HarmlessVillain Harmless Villain]], at least for the main characters Wander and Sylvia whom he never managed to seriously threaten (despite his fervent wishes of torturing and killing them). However, until that point he had been introduced as a serious threat for the rest of the galaxy, [[GalacticConqueror taking over planet after planet]] trying to prove himself as "The Greatest in the Galaxy", with the help of his second in command [[TheDragon Commander Peepers]] and his army of [[PunchClockVillain Watchdogs]]. Cue to [[KnightOfCerebus Lord Dominator]]. Her first action in the series proper is [[DynamicEntry using her giant ship to slice Hater's ship in two with a gigantic drill]]. From that moment on she takes the role as the show's [[BigBad Big Bad]], dethroning Hater as the Greatest in the Galaxy by overdoing him in every possible way. Hater has an [[PunchClockVillain army of friendly and usually incompetent Watchdogs]]? Dominator has an army of [[MechaMooks highly efficient robots]] which provide a such a great physical threat that not even [[LightningBruiser Sylvia]] can punch them without hurting her hand. While Hater was mainly the image of his empire, showing up for conquests and defeating rival villains or heroes while Peepers was the brains keeping the Empire together, Dominator can manage her entire empire on her own. Hater was powerful enough to punch [[TheRival Emperor Awesome]] through a planet and take down his entire army by himself if [[ThePowerOfHate angered enough]]. Dominator can easily [[NoSell No Sell]] and [[CurbstompBattle Curbstomp]] Hater without much effort (although in their next encounter Hater [[TookALevelInBadass fights her so evenly]] that it is actually arguable that he could have beaten her if he hadn't gotten... [[LoveAtFirstSight distracted]] the moment he took her helmet off). She managed to climb to the top of the Villain Board in a record time and let´s say that her [[OmnicidalManiac final objective]] is bad enough to horrify [[EvenEvilHasStandards her fellow villains]].
[[/folder]]
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