->''"I never ''could'' tell if you wanted to win or if you wanted me."''
-->-- '''Sarah''' to '''Jarath''', ''Webcomic/GirlsNextDoor'', [[https://pika-la-cynique.deviantart.com/art/GND139-A-Conversation-part-2-206383670 "139 - A Conversation"]]

There's this one person. They're not very nice, although they're probably very [[FauxAffablyEvil polite]], and they can be very [[TheCasanova charming]]... in their own way. The thing is, they like [[ManipulativeBastard playing with your mind]] a lot. They like [[FlawExploitation pushing your buttons]] [[ItAmusedMe for kicks]], and [[TheChessmaster playing you like a puppet]] in some kind of elaborate game.

For some reason, they've got a [[StalkerWithACrush special interest]] in playing someone in particular. Maybe that someone is especially [[TheWoobie pure and innocent]], at the start, in which case they can expect their personality to be [[BreakTheCutie broken]] or at least [[CorruptTheCutie corrupted]]. Maybe that someone is seen by the ManipulativeBastard as a WorthyOpponent and even a [[TheApprentice potential player]] themselves, in which case there will soon be GambitPileup in the future. TheSvengali will tend to have this kind of relationship to their protégé(s).

In any case, for [[FanGirl some]] people in the audience, they find all those mind games kind of sexy. Could be the StockholmSyndrome kicking in, or having a too literal interpretation of the expression "MindScrew" or could be the fact that getting to know someone well enough to play with their mind that way is kind of... intimate. And an excellent fodder for {{Dark Fic}}s.

Usually a subtrope of FoeYay. Not to be confused with the MindScrew (where it's the author who screws with the mind of the audience). Not related to ''Anime/MindGame'' the movie. See also AngelDevilShipping and DrivenToMadness.

!!Canonical Mind Game relationships:

[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Seishirou/Subaru from ''Manga/TokyoBabylon'' and ''Manga/{{X1999}}'' are a very iconic and canonical example of this trope. In ''X'', [[spoiler:Fuuma]] also invokes this trope with Kamui.
* ''Manga/{{MAR}}'': Phantom and Alviss. Made canon in the anime.
* ''Manga/YuuYuuHakusho'': Kurama/Karasu canonically.
* Somewhat benign case, but entirely canon, ''Manga/HayateTheCombatButler'' Miki has a stated crush on Hinagiku, and she's shown that she plays a lot of mind games on her. It's even on her profile as one of the things she likes. Luckily for the [[UnwantedHarem harem]], it seems that she's using these powers to push Hayate and Hinagiku together.
* Creator/OsamuTezuka's Michio Yuki from ''Manga/{{MW}}'' actually ''did'' have an explicit relationship with his MindGameShip target, Garai. Make of that what you will.
* Akio and Touga in ''Anime/RevolutionaryGirlUtena''. With [[YaoiGuys each other]], and with [[EvenTheGuysWantHim both boys and girls alike]]. Particularly [[BrotherSisterIncest disturbing]] is Akio/Anthy and Touga/Nanami.
* From ''Manga/DNAngel'', Krad/Satoshi. Whenever we see the two together alone, it's generally Krad cuddling Satoshi from behind, or declaring that "You are my everything, Satoshi-sama". Would be incredibly sweet if not for the fact that Krad is also a homicidal blonde angel, who only really wants Satoshi for his body.
* Albert and [[MagnificentBastard the Count]] in ''Anime/{{Gankutsuou}}''.
* This is the plot of ''Manga/KaguyaSamaLoveIsWar'' in a nutshell. Kaguya and Shirogane spend their time messing with each other in hopes of forcing a LoveConfession because they're too prideful to give one themselves.

[[folder: Film - Animation]]
* ''Disney/{{Frozen}}'': [[spoiler:Prince Hans]] is a villain who intends to kill Elsa and Anna to usurp the throne and [[spoiler:acts [[ManipulativeBastard manipulative to Anna]] by making her fall in love with him]].
* Frollo of ''Disney/TheHunchbackOfNotreDame'' has a disturbing infatuation with Esmeralda where he gets close to her, [[PervertedSniffing smells her hair]] and gives her a SadisticChoice of "choose me or the fire". (She either chooses to become his and is freed or he burns her to death)

* Rhett/Scarlett from ''Literature/GoneWithTheWind'' comes across as this at times; Rhett is definitely manipulating her and toys with her emotions. Subverted in that she causes him significantly more angst than he does her, despite hardly manipulating him consciously at all.
* ''Literature/KushielsLegacy'': Melisande Shahrizai is like this with Phèdre. There appears to be some genuine love buried amidst the casual backstabbing.
* ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'': Littlefinger/Sansa is a one-directional example. The trope is in full effect, given that Littlefinger is a MagnificentBastard--''so much so'' that he's prominent in his status as one even in a series that's chock full of them by normal standards--and that he seems to be trying to CorruptTheCutie.
* In the novel ''Literature/{{Hannibal}}'' Hannibal Lecter hypnotizes and brainwashes Clarice Starling, though there is some implication she has in part turned the tables on him and he's created a monster he can't control. [[spoiler: Specifically, when Hannibal springs his notion of Clarice "making a place" for his dead small sister Mischa, Clarice not only suggests perhaps it's Hannibal who should "step aside" for Mischa, she ultimately turns his own BreakThemByTalking on him, including a Freudian analysis of a comment he made to Senator Martin back in ''Literature/TheSilenceOfTheLambs.'']]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* The entire second season of ''Series/GossipGirl'' saw [[BelligerentSexualTension Chuck and Blair]] competing over who could invoke this trope the most. {{Deconstructed|Trope}}, when Chuck points out how the real reason they ''can't'' be together is that the the entire foundation of their relationship is built on screwing each other over--with normal dating, that would just crumble.
-->'''Chuck''': I think we both know that the moment we do,[[note]](say they love each other)[[/note]] it won't be the start of something: It will be the end. Think about it. ''Chuck and Blair, going to the movies. Chuck and Blair, holding hands.''\\
'''Blair''': We don't have to do those things. We can do the things that we like.\\
'''Chuck''': What we like is this.\\
'''Blair''': The game.\\
'''Chuck''': Without it, I'm not sure how long we'd last.
** Later it's {{reconstructed|Trope}}, and with a combination of the PowerOfLove and BrainsAndBondage, they make it work.
* ''Series/OrangeIsTheNewBlack'': [[LesYay Alex and Piper]] are described by reviewers as being in an epic, if psychotic, love affair. Initially, Alex manipulates Piper into joining an international drug ring after beginning a relationship with her, naming Piper in her indictment and lying about it, and ultimately cutting a separate deal with the prosecutor for release for her testimony after convincing Piper to lie under oath. The last one burns back though, as Alex's testimony is not enough to convict the ringleader, and she is forced to live in fear of retribution. Piper then betrays her back, revealing her plan to skip parole and gets Alex arrested again. There's also season 3 which includes a scene where Piper mocks Alex in a cruel KickTheDog moment for being fearful for her life and she seems insistent on making Alex mad so that they can engage in "hate sex".
* ''Series/{{Hannibal}}'' is based around the back and forth between manipulative SerialKiller [[ImAHumanitarian Hannibal Lecter]] and [[TheMentallyDisturbed unstable]] [[TheProfiler FBI Profiler Will Graham]]. Hannibal's interest in Will becomes more of that of a StalkerWithACrush and [[TheCorrupter inspires]] him to [[DrivenToMadness drive]] Will towards SanitySlippage. As the series progresses, other characters start to comment on Hannibal and Will's obsessions with one another, with one even confirming that Hannibal loves Will and implying Will feels the same. The end of the series confirms that Will returns Hannibal's feelings, right before [[spoiler:[[TakingYouWithMe he throws them both off a cliff]] (although WordOfGod is that they survived and had the series continued, would've been on the run together)]].

* A canonical example in ''{{Theatre/Heathers}}'' with Veronica and her SerialKiller boyfriend, J.D. Even after she gets sick of his shit and dumps him, the mind games and sexual tension continues.
* ''Theatre/AStreetcarNamedDesire'': Stanley/Blanche. They are somewhat attracted to each other at first, but Stanley eventually sees through [[StepfordSmiler Blanche's mask]] and his continued involvement in her life causes her to descend into permanent insanity.
* ''Theatre/{{Elisabeth}}'' has Death/Elisabeth and Death/Rudolf. However, the Mind Games and MoreThanMindControl aspect really comes to the fore with the latter ship. Death always bodily manipulates Rudolf during their seduction duet, with the level of physical contact and mind control subtext differing between actors/productions.

* ''Webcomic/GirlsNextDoor'': This is part of the dynamic between Jareth and Sarah, which is inherited from their canon (''{{Film/Labyrinth}}'', see in the fandom film examples below). In the comic Jareth's romantic interest in Sarah is more clear cut... but him courting her still basically amounts to him screwing with her and trying to trick her. Deconstructed when she points out that ''this'' is precisely why she can't just get with him.
-->'''Sarah''': Your problem is, you think we're still waltzing about in your crystal ballroom--you want me dazzled and confused, you want to lead the dance, and you've already planned the cushion pit ready for things to get decadent. ''[beat]'' You don't care weather I'm... ready or not, or how foolish you make me look in the process. ''[beat]'' And I know you're all fae and goblin king and make-it-so, but ''see this my way!!'' ''[beat]'' That's... scoring a conquest. It's not trying for a relationship. ''[beat]'' I never ''could'' tell if you wanted to win or if you wanted me.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* ''GrandmasterOfTheft'' has Deus canonically doing this towards Cassidy. While he generally enjoys causing trouble to anyone for sake of drama, she interests him more than anyone else because of her abilities as MagnificentBitch and drive to capture him.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans'': Terra/Slade is canon in the comics.
* ''WesternAnimation/GeneratorRex'': Breach starts canonically trying this on Rex after she decides that messing with his head is far more fun than [[CollectorOfTheStrange adding him to her "collection"]]. Naturally, he's not pleased.

!!Fandom examples:

[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'': [[IdiosyncraticShipNaming SommelierShipping]] (Cilan/Cabernet) comes off as this, with Cilan being the manipulator.
* Johan Liebert (the eponymous ''Manga/{{Monster}}'') and Dr. Kenzou Tenma.
** Also, Johan and Anna/Nina. She is probably the only person in the world that he cares about, but he's not above [[spoiler:mind raping her, allowing his henchman to kill her, and manipulating her into nearly shooting herself.]] And not to mention those certain "emails" he sent her about being "born to smother [her] with flowers" ...whatever ''that'' means.
* Griffith/Guts in ''Manga/{{Berserk}}''
** Griffith/Casca.
* Creed and Train in ''Manga/BlackCat''.
* ''Manga/HunterXHunter'': Hisoka/Gon.
** Hisoka/anyone, really. And Chrollo/Kurapika is pretty common in fanfiction.
* While not foes in most arcs, Mion and her [[{{Twincest}} twin]] Shion from ''VisualNovel/HigurashiWhenTheyCry'' count, especially in Meakashi-hen and Watanagashi-hen. Before you [[YuriFan get too excited]], you should know that [[spoiler:it ends badly for both of them in both arcs.]]
* Alucard and Integra in ''Manga/{{Hellsing}}'', especially in the manga.
** In the manga Alucard and Integra have something like a BodyguardCrush dynamic since their meeting. The Gonzo Anime, on the other hand, they did have head games with Alucard ''testing'' her when they met (which never happened in the manga, she wished for a knight to rescue her and got it). Alucard's loyalty to Integra is unquestionable without setting her BoundandGagged in an illusion.
** Despite their BodyguardCrush dynamic and his UndyingLoyalty, there ''are'' still shades of this. Alucard tests her quite a few times and constantly goads her, spurring her onwards into killing humans and the undead and then expressing his, erm...''excitement'' over it when she allows him to give them hell. In the {{OVA}} official (Creator/{{FUNimation}}) subtitles, he even asks her if declaring war excited her. Alucard has [[InterplayOfSexAndViolence interesting ways]] of [[InLoveWithYourCarnage declaring]] his UndyingLoyalty to her. While it might not be 'mind games' per se, there are definite undertones of powerplay in their interactions in both the manga/OVA and the anime and they certainly apply.
** Seras and Zorin Blitz, with Zorin's particular interest in mind raping her.
* ''Manga/PeacemakerKurogane'': Later on, after Suzu goes insane, his love/hate towards Tetsunosuke makes their relationship prime MindGameShip fuel.
* Naoe/Takaya in ''LightNovel/MirageOfBlaze''. They both have been known to give as good as they get.
* Allen/Tyki in ''Manga/DGrayMan''.
** Don't forget Road/anyone, although Allen is the main target of her warped affection.
** The Earl tends to play mind games with a lot of people especially Allen.
* ''Anime/CodeGeass'': Lelouch with a good number of people, especially Rolo and Suzaku. And to a lesser extent, there's also Mao/Lelouch.
** Some fans like Mao/Shirley as well (make of ''that'' what you will....)
** Not to mention Lelouch/C.C., which persists for the very same reason WordOfGod gave when they tried to [[ShipSinking sink]] it: they see each other as intellectual equals.
* Melfina/Harry in ''Manga/OutlawStar''. Thank ''God'' his MindRape hacking attempts failed. [[spoiler:She still expressed pity for him when he died.]]
** [[spoiler:He died heroically charging the BigBad in a vain attempt to save her. Or out of righteous anger that the BigBad would dare to treat her like a thing. AlternateCharacterInterpretation and all that.]]
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'' is practically brimming with this sort of thing. It doesn't help that most of the characters show signs of having Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Of exceptional note is Orochimaru with ''many'' people, especially Sasuke. Later on, Pain and Naruto have traces of this, to an extent. As do Itachi and Sasuke. Additionally, any Kabuto pairing is bound to have some of this- he usually presents himself as this harmless, bumbling oaf with NerdGlasses, but is in fact in league with this villain, and...well...poor Naruto's look of betrayal when he realizes this is almost too much.
** Naruto's whole innocence, gullibility and inspiring-Messiah-like outlook are a lot of reasons why a lot of fanfics either a) mind-screw him over, or b) pair [insert name here]xNaruto ... and not the other way around... It's probably why the author likes to break him so much too.
** Naruto also gets this with Obito. The latter tries to pull a WeCanRuleTogether on him and is determined to break his ideals down since he used to be a lot like him. The Naruto wiki even refers to it as a "fixation".
** Orochimaru/Anko; namely in episode 30, where he hits her where it hurts with his words while stroking her cheek.
* ''Anime/YuGiOh'': Dark Marik and Dark Bakura with just about everyone.
** To a degree, normal Marik has this kind of relationship with Yugi/Yami Yugi, as he's explicitly challenging him and playing games with his mind, presumably so that killing him would be more interesting.
* During the third season of ''Anime/YuGiOhGX'', the Judai/Yubel ship was also very messed up, though rather one-sided, until the very end when Juudai returns her love and fuses their souls.
* And in ''Anime/YuGiOh5Ds'', we get Divine with Aki playing the trope to the hilt.
* Mukuro/Tsuna in ''Manga/KatekyoHitmanReborn''. Based on Mukuro's obsession with [[GrandTheftMe obtaining Tsuna's body]] at any cost and screwing with his head. And Mukuro/Chrome.
** Also, Byakuran/anyone but especially with either Tsuna or Uni.
* Several interpretations of Light/L (''Manga/DeathNote'') seem to portray their love/hate/manipulate relationship as culminating in a [[DoubleEntendre Two Xanatos Pileup]].
** Shoot, if you paired Light OR L with different people, it could exhibit this trope.
** Also, Beyond Birthday/anyone.
* An example of this that's not FoeYay: Sensui and Itsuki from ''Manga/YuYuHakusho''.
** Any halfway ''realistic'' Kurama/Hiei, considering Hiei dislikes almost everyone, including himself, and kitsune play games practically obsessively. Considering Hiei seems to enjoy being around Kurama beyond anyone, one could say he enjoys partaking in Kurama's teasing.
* The majority of ''Webcomic/AxisPowersHetalia'' shipping-based fics featuring [[PsychopathicManchild Ru]][[CuteAndPsycho ss]][[{{Yandere}} ia]] use this approach.
** Some {{Alternative Character Interpretation}}s of certain nations can also invoke this trope in shipping fics, like England being a ManipulativeBastard (especially in England/China and England/Spain fics, and some ''ostensibly'' England/America and England/Japan fics have shades of this) and Japan being CuteAndPsycho or a {{Yandere}} (especially in Japan/China fics).
** At least three-quarters of all [[FoeYay Turkey/Greece]] fics run on this trope and TheMasochismTango, with Turkey as the one pushing Greece's buttons and [[ManipulativeBastard loving to rile him up]] or [[IHaveYouNowMyPretty make it clear to him]] just ''where'' his place is in their dysfunctional relationship.
** And then there's [[{{Yandere}} Belarus]], about the only character who can [[MadLove top Russia regularly]]. Or make [[HorribleJudgeOfCharacter poor unsuspecting]] [[DoggedNiceGuy Lithuania's]] life hell if she wants to. And that's not even mentioning when she's paired up with ''[[FoeYay America]]''.
** And let's not forget the [[TheMasochismTango America/Vietnam]] fanworks out there.
** Any Russia/America fanfic will almost certainly either take place during the UsefulNotes/ColdWar or make numerous references to it. Mutual MindRape ensues.
** If China is portrayed as a ManipulativeBastard during [[ImperialChina Imperial]] or [[RedChina Red]] times, this will ensue almost doubtlessly.
* ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'':
** The relationship between Roy and Ed can be interpreted as this. A ''lot'' of people love pairing them together, quite a bit of it having to do with how Roy knows exactly which [[BerserkButton buttons]] to push to make Ed angry, and how much he enjoys doing so. Since they're more like VitriolicBestBuds in canon, it's usually a relatively mild, comedic version of the trope, unless it's a DarkFic.
** Envy/Ed is a [[FoeYay much more straightforward version]] of this trope. They're especially popular in popular in fics based off the [[Anime/FullmetalAlchemist 2003 anime]], where Envy's hatred of Ed is much more personal.
* The interactions between Gauron and Sousuke in ''LightNovel/FullMetalPanic'' are this. Gauron constantly taunts Sousuke and tries to make him [[BerserkButton go berserk]]. He loves reminding him of the past, and makes him feel uncomfortable by being [[StalkerWithACrush creepily]] and [[HoYay overly affectionate]] with him (including calling him "Kashim" and "Honey"). Especially noticeable during the the third season, where [[spoiler:Gauron pretty much mind screws Sousuke by rubbing in how Sousuke's friends caused him to become weaker, and telling him that he had his minion kill Sousuke's love, Kaname. He takes much delight in seeing [[HeroicBSOD Sousuke's reaction]], and continues to goad Sousuke into killing him (which apparently is his idea of consummating their relationship)]].
** [[spoiler:And then there's the whole conversation in the light novel where Gauron says that back when he was fighting Sousuke at the beginning, he fantasized about killing him and then raping his dead body. Sousuke did not react well...]]
* ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'' has lots of this:
** The relationship between Ulquiorra and Orihime is a textbook example. She's a naive and kindhearted girl [[StepfordSmiler with hidden issues]], who is forced to go into a strange land upon [[spoiler:Aizen]]'s orders. He's the one who relayed said orders to her, was made into her jailed and interacted with her the most -- and was also caustic, cynical and emotionless to inhuman points.
** [[spoiler:Aizen]]/Ichigo. [[spoiler:Aizen]]/''anyone'', period. (Except [[spoiler:Gin]], maybe.) We all know what happened to the ''one'' person who gave in... [[spoiler:''Poor'' Momo.]]
** Depending on what sort of...alterations were included in his healing process, Mayuri/[[spoiler:Uryu]] as well.
** [[ManipulativeBastard Gin Ichimaru]] gets his own subsection, because he gets this with EVERYONE he's paired with:
*** Gin/Ichigo. Gin demonstrated that he ''really'' loves fucking with Ichigo's head by [[BreakingSpeech picking at his fear and insecurity.]]
*** Long, long before Ichigo, Gin was already messing with Kira's head.
*** Gin/Rukia. It's canon that Gin scares the shit out of poor Rukia. When she was in Soul Society waiting her execution she stated that even if he wasn't talking to her, she'd get this ominous feeling like "snakes were curling themselves around her" and she could feel "every bead of sweat" on her body whenever he was in her presence. There's the fact that Gin was a total asshole and told her that he would save her from being executed before squashing her hopes down flat, sending the [[BreakTheCutie emotionally broken girl]] into an HeroicBSOD.
** Rangiku, Gin's OnlyFriend, doesn't have it much better. [[spoiler: Yes, his plan was all centered about protecting her since she was the only person consistently kind to him but he '''still''' emotionally screwed her over while trying to protect her.]]
** [[ManipulativeBastard Tsukishima]]/''anyone''. Specially [[spoiler: Ichigo, Orihime, Chad, Shishigawara]], or even [[spoiler: Ginjou]].
* Kira and Flay in ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamSEED''. [[spoiler:Though Kira was genuinely in love with her without knowing she initially was just using him, and this becomes a moot point due to her BecomingTheMask. Eventually, she dies before she gets to set the record straight and make it official, so Kira never finds out the relationship was originally a lie.]]
* [[spoiler:Akito and Shigure]] in ''Manga/FruitsBasket''. [[spoiler:Though they got their happy ending in the manga.]] Akito/Anyone qualify, considering how [[NoSenseOfPersonalSpace touchy-feely]] [[spoiler:she]] gets with everyone in the Zodiac, and even [[spoiler:her]] demeanor around Tohru [[spoiler:until she [[CharacterDevelopment gets better]] thanks to Tohru herself]] could be interpreted thusly.
* [[ManipulativeBastard Muraki]], of ''Manga/DescendantsOfDarkness'', with ''everyone'' he interacts. '''And how.'''
* ''Manga/MajinTanteiNougamiNeuro'': Neuro to Yako. (As the image on the show's page suggests.)
* Both Sae Sasaki and Ryo Okayasu from ''Anime/PeachGirl'' play with people's minds by relying on their ability to charm people into doing what they want. [[spoiler: Ryo's manipulation/mistreatment of Sae herself is so bad, though, that it's enough for her to [[HeelFaceTurn change her ways]]. Sort of.]]
** Sae/Momo. The major plot point of the series is how Sae pretends to be Momo's friend and secretly attempts to undermine her because of her own insecurity and jealousy of Momo.
* ''Manga/DeadmanWonderland'' has Genkaku/Nagi.
* ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'': [[StalkingIsLove Tsukuyomi/Setsuna]] and Fate/Negi at least before Fate's HeelFaceTurn.
** As well as Kurt Godel/Negi.
** And Tsukuyomi/either [[spoiler:Fate or Negi]].
* Prince Dimande and ''Franchise/SailorMoon'', coming from Dimande's ''really'' obsessive StalkerWithACrush behavior towards her in both anime and manga.
* [[DevilInPlainSight Xellos]] / [[PersonOfMassDestruction Lina]] from the ''LightNovel/{{Slayers}}'' adhere to this. It doesn't help that Xellos apparently knows all of her weaknesses either, even the stuff he shouldn't [[StalkerWithACrush technically]] know about.
* From ''Manga/{{Loveless}}'' any ship involving Seimei ''will'' be this. Most notably the [[BrotherSisterIncest Seimei/Ritsuka]] pairing.
* ''Manga/PokemonDiamondAndPearlAdventure'' has two instances of this at the ''same time'', when Cyrus manipulates [[spoiler:Mitsumi into rejoining Team Galactic and forcing her to battle Hareta, while all the while taunting her over her headset about how she's alone in the world. By the end, she's so distraught that she basically [[ICannotSelfTerminate asks Jupiter to kill her]].]] Later on she [[spoiler:forgives him and helps facilitate his recovery]]. But the manipulation was intended for Hareta, and so Cyrus launches into an 11-page tirade about how hatred is the only thing humans can feel and that's why he's going to set things right by ending the universe and starting it again under his tight control, concluding it with "You must hate me even more now." Hareta looks up at him and [[spoiler:cries his eyes out, saying "you do bad things, but I don't hate you." Cyrus asks himself if, after all he's done to Hareta, this boy still cares about everyone--and nearly stops his plan until Saturn intervenes. Basically, Cyrus managed to mind game HIMSELF]]. This, of course, doesn't stop Cyrus from trying to kill Hareta again later that volume, but given that this is the only continuity where he manages to [[spoiler:redeem himself]], it's obvious what impact this had.
* ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'': Kuno/Nabiki, Ranma/Nabiki, and pretty much any ship with [[TheTrickster Nabiki]].
* Aion and Chrono in ''Manga/ChronoCrusade'' tend to be written like this in yaoi fanfic. And some of the scenes in the anime actually border on this without the need of fanfic to back it up.
* ''Manga/GetBackers'': Takuma and Ban. It's a bit one-sided on Takuma's part though.
* ''LightNovel/{{Durarara}}''
** Izaya explicitly states in the light novel that he despises Shizuo and would rather be as far away from him as possible. He also hates talking about him in general and seems to get pissed whenever anyone mentions him. Shizuo's the ''last'' person Izaya would try to play mindgames with face-to-face - he just wants him dead. None of this stops the slashers, be they in-universe or not.
** Seiji Yagiri and [[spoiler:Mika Harima]], either. They look like SickeninglySweethearts... and are anything ''but''.
-->'''Seiji''': I'm so in love with [[spoiler:[[ALoveToDismember the scars on your neck]]...]]
* ''Manga/SoulEater'': Medusa/Stein. Canonical seductive touching while Medusa tries to drive Stein [[SanitySlippage insane]]? It's all hallucinated, but that just means it's ''working''. Naturally, fanfic-writing proponents of the couple have taken this concept and run with it.
* This is the main appeal of shipping Keith and Matsuka in ''Manga/TowardTheTerra'', given that Keith seems to exert every effort to give Matsuka a vicious case of StockholmSyndrome, and if anything it works a little too well - by the end of the series, Matsuka is willing to [[spoiler:sacrifice his life to save Keith]]'s.
* ''Manga/WolfGuyWolfenCrest'': Haguro towards Inugami. To a lesser extent, Ryuuko towards Inugami.
* Sebastian and Ciel in ''Manga/BlackButler'', in the sense that all the moments of HoYay between the two come off more as nightmarish threats considering that Sebastian is a demon and is merely killing time until he gets to eats Ciel's soul.
** Sebastian/anyone. It's one of the many things he does best.
** Season two gives us [[AxCrazy Alois]]/Ciel, which is practically canon. On Alois's side, at least. Also, Alois/Hannah.
** And Claude/Ciel. Thanks to episodes 7 and 10 which has him basically orgasming over Ciel 9 which has him practically mind raping Ciel, and declaring how he wants to "stick [his] needle into his soft skin and suck out his sensual soul".
*** Claude/Alois since Claude is a MasterOfTheMixedMessage and alternates between getting his HoYay on with Alois and considering his instability arousing or scheming against him and [[spoiler: killing him]]. Alois meanwhile compares Claude to a butterfly and wonders if he should remove his wings so he can't leave him.
** Grell/Sebastian. Grell talks within the same few minutes about wanting to cut Sebastian into pieces and wanting to bear his child.
* [[{{Twincest}} Knives/Vash]] and Legato/Vash in ''Manga/{{Trigun}}''.
* ''Manga/{{Vassalord}}'': Barry and Rayflo, though Rayflo wants no part of it.
** Rayfell and Charley have a bit of this going on as well. Charley also wants no part of it.
* In ''Manga/PandoraHearts'' Vincent has traces of this going on with Gil and everyone else, but especially with Gil and Ada. [[spoiler:Though, after discovering Ada is actually a NightmareFetishist, he started to regret his mind game with her; and after she said she would willingly put her life in danger to protect him, maybe his MindGameShip with her started to grow to a complete love or at least crush]].
** Jack/Oz can be seen as this, based on Jack's tendency to [[KickTheDog screw Oz over]] while getting physically close to him and touching him.
* [[Anime/MawaruPenguindrum Sanetoshi Watase]] and ''anyone'' he interacts with. Specially with Himari, [[spoiler:the Princess of the Crystal]], and DOUBLE in the case of [[spoiler:[[HoYay Kan]][[FoeYay ba]].]]
* Hino and Yunoki of ''VideoGame/KiniroNoCorda''.
* Shiki and Akira of ''VisualNovel/TogainuNoChi''.
* Yuno and Yukiteru in ''Manga/FutureDiary'' have shades of this.
* Ren and Aichi in ''Anime/CardfightVanguard''. Ren mind rapes Aichi and gets physically close while doing so.
* Rei and Kyoko from ''Manga/SangatsuNoLion''. Kyoko often manipulates Rei when she meets up with him or drops by his place, veiling her words with signs that she may actually care for him despite it all.
* This is how some fans interpret Slaine and [[spoiler: Princess Lemrina]]'s interactions in the second season of ''Anime/AldnoahZero''.
* ''Manga/TokyoGhoul''
** Tsukiyama gets FoeYay with everyone and toes the line between amorous and murderous affections when it comes to Kaneki and also likes to act friendly around Touka who he admits he had a thing for before declaring he'll decorate the church with her organs.
** Yamori and Kaneki, given how he psychologically and physically tortures Kaneki and gets close to him while doing so.
** Eto effectively mind rapes and tortures Kanae via sewing his [[EyeScream eyes open]] and sewing his mouth into a GlasgowGrin. She does this while naked and he's in a vulnerable state due to suffering over unrequited love and calls him sweet and cute when he's like this. Her torture warps his mind, making him AxCrazy, and leading to him to call her "Queen" and worship her.
** Eto tries manipulating Kaneki and is revealed to have a twisted love for him as she's both trying to kill him and [[{{Squick}} licking his eye]] before declaring affection for him again as he tosses her mutilated body from a building.
*** Eto finds herself in one with Furata who mentions finding her attractive, saying he likes woman like her, and saying he wants to dominate her while putting a hand to his crotch. He's also [[{{Jerkass}} horrible]] towards her and when she rebuffs and insults him he repeats to her [[MadnessMantra "Die...die...die...die...die...die..."]]. He later plots to torture her.
** Romo wants to screw with Sasaki's life so he turns back into the beautiful tragic Kaneki she adores.
** Rize seems to have a standard crush on Kaneki before she takes a chomp out of his shoulder and waxing horrifically about how she wants to scramble his organs.
** Furuta loves to tease and mock Kaneki/Sasaki and calls him "my dear Kaneki" all while trying to kill him and [[EyeScream gouge his eyes out]].
* The fight between Ladd Russo and Chane Laforet atop the Flying Pussyfoot in ''LightNovel/{{Baccano}}'' is punctuated with this, as Ladd repeatedly declares his love for Chane and monologues about how she loves him back. [[InterplayofSexandViolence Even while he's trying to blow her to bits with a shotgun.]] It's implied that Ladd's just trying to mess with her, but when he starts to caress her cheek and play with her hair, [[VillainousCrush one can't help but wonder.]]
-->'''Ladd''': I'll take it. I accept this love from you, young lady! But you have to accept my love, too...\\
* ''Anime/ProjectK'': Fushimi is pretty much a walking BerserkButton for Yata, takes great delight in messing with him and is hinted to be {{Yandere}} for him.
* Embryo and ''Anime/CrossAnge'' Ange. Embryo loves Ange for her defiance towards him and mind rapes her a couple times.
* Ferid of ''Manga/SeraphOfTheEnd'' takes great pleasure in screwing with people's emotions what with him being a sadistic vampire. In particular, he has a peculiar fixation with doing this to Yuu, Mika, and Crowley. The fanbook also states his greatest fantasy as being to suck Guren's blood before his comrades when he's at the height of his glory.
** In chapter 46 Ferid drives up in his car and holds out his hand to Mika and Yuu, with a flirtatious look and teasingly saying "I heard you two were being attacked by a dangerous vampire so I came to your rescue. Come take a ride with me. I'll save you." He plays mind games with Yuu and Mika throughout the chapter, and when Yuu turns into a demon to attack Ferid for [[spoiler: showing them Akane's head]] Ferid tells Mika he's "worried for the poor guy (Yuu)" because he's says Yuu could turn into a full demon. He states he has an antidote to cure Yuu and tells Shinoa "Let us go rescue dear Yuu." Mika is adamant to keep Ferid from getting near Yuu and says "I won't let you have your way with him!" Ferid smiles and says he just wants to help Yuu. Mika says he's not going to let Ferid touch him. Crowley engages Mika in a fight while Ferid states cheerfully "Now precious Yuu is all mine." Ferid approaches Yuu and blushes saying "Wow! [[ShesAllGrownUp Haven't you grown ]] into the [[{{Bishonen}} cute one!]]! Your demon is on the verge of rampage yet you still have [[WhatBeautifulEyes such clear and beautiful eyes.]] No wonder you are the extra special guinea pig." He then lifts Yuu's face by his chin, rubs his lips with his thumb, and gets close saying "Perhaps before I heal you I'll take a little sip of your blood." Yuu asks if there's something in it for him if he allows Ferid to suck his blood. Ferid says he got the curse supresent from Guren and it's the same one he takes. Yuu demands Ferid tells him everything he knows and Ferid smiles, covers Yuu's mouth with his hand, says "Oh, you ''are'' cute" and bites him while gripping his shoulder and hand. He then "cures" Yuu of his advancing demon curse while holding him close and leaning his head on Yuu's shoulder.
* Kuroi from ''Manga/ThouShaltNotDie'' like to play mind games with Mashiro because she is the only mind he can't read, he takes pleasure into finding any side of her from her gentle side to [[spoiler: her berserker split personality]] and will keep teasing her even in the middle of a war zone.

* ''ComicBook/SpiderMan'' with the Venom symbiote, of course.
* The Joker and ''Franchise/{{Batman}}''. Especially in ''Film/TheDarkKnight''.
** There's an awful lot of Joker/Batman shippers out there that find the comic version more fitting of this trope than the version in that film. Especially since in the comics, ComicBook/TheJoker [[TermsOfEndangerment just]] ''[[TheNicknamer loves]]'' [[InLoveWithYourCarnage to play around]] with FoeYay so the fans don't have to, which the Nolanverse Joker never really does in quite the same way.
** To a lesser degree, Joker/Harley Quinn, although given that their relationship has pretty much always been depicted as a physically and emotionally abusive one even in canon, there's a good bit less support for it than Joker/Batman. Even ''Harley'' has internalized this and moved on in the comics.
* Daken and Bullseye in ComicBook/DarkAvengers. Daken's a manipulative freak with mind-control pheromone powers, Bullseye is [[PsychoForHire utterly psychopathic.]]
* Loki and ''Franchise/{{Thor}}''. Them being brothers does nothing to detract from this.

* Dean and Jimmy Novak/Castiel in ''Angelface'' and its sequels.
* A lot of [[Literature/HarryPotter Draco/Hermione]] fanfiction ends up like this.
** So does a lot of Tom Riddle or Voldemort/Harry, Draco/Harry, and Snape/Harry.
** ''FanFic/TheVerySecretDiary'' takes the Tom Riddle/Ginny Weasley "relationship" as far as it can go without it actually being an explicit pedophile rapist/victim scenario. The whole thing reads like an internet predator "grooming" their newest victim, played for all the horror it's worth.
* [[http://sympathy-crime.livejournal.com/ Sympathy Crime]], a ''VideoGame/{{Persona 4}}'' fic, features the pairing of [[spoiler: Yosuke/Adachi, where Adachi manipulates Yosuke's emotions in hopes of breaking up the investigation team, and also for his own sick enjoyment.]]
* The ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' {{Fanfic}} ''[[Fanfic/MLPTheGamesWePlay The Games We Play]]'' sees Mare Do Well making [[TheBet a bet]] with Rainbow Dash: that she can get the pegasus to fall in love with her before Dash can unmask her. To this end, she teases and misleads her to suspect all of her friends, and takes a lot of enjoyment in how much she screws with Rainbow's head.
* The main character does this with everyone in the ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'' fic ''[[FanFic/KakashisKid Kakashi's Kid]]''. Being the narrator helps even more.
* In ''FanFic/DesertedDistractions'', this happens in-universe with Yami Bakura and Tea; she knows ''exactly'' how manipulative Yami Bakura is, knows he's manipulating her, and ''still'' can't stop herself from being physically attracted to him.

[[folder:Film - Animation]]
* WesternAnimation/{{Coraline}}/The Other Mother. ''Very'' disturbingly {{squick}}-inducing that is.
* Scar and Simba in ''Disney/TheLionKing''.
* Ratigan/Basil in ''Disney/TheGreatMouseDetective.''
* In ''Disney/ThePrincessAndTheFrog'' Dr. Facilier offers to make Tiana's dreams come true in exchange for his talisman. He shows her illusions of her restaurant while circling her and making his offer. He also gets really close and speaks with a seductive voice into her ear. Also, Facilier practically seduced Naveen into making the deal.
* Mother Gothel and Rapunzel in ''Disney/{{Tangled}}''. She manipulated Rapunzel into staying in her tower and kept her there for many years because she needs Rapunzel's hair to help her stay young, it having been filled with the power of magic flower. She [[FauxAffablyEvil plays a doting mother]] and tries to convince Rapunzel that Flynn is no good when he really wants to help her. She also ties Rapunzel up at the climax and stabs Flynn purely because Flynn is in love with Rapunzel.
* Gaston in ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast'' wants Belle, the most most beautiful girl in town who refuses to be swayed by him. This is compared to a hunter going after his prey. He also threatens to throw Belle's father into the asylum to try to force Belle to marry him and [[MurderTheHypotenuse stabs Beast because he's angry Belle's in love with him]].
* Mr. Incredible/Syndrome from ''WesternAnimation/TheIncredibles'' and Syndrome/Violet.

[[folder:Film - Live-Action]]
* ''Film/TheWatcher'': David/Joel. Full fucking stop.
* Hannibal Lecter and Clarice Starling from ''SilenceOfTheLambs'' are often portrayed like this. Including [[spoiler:in the novels]].
* O.W. Grant from ''Interstate 60'' does this with EVERYBODY. Other characters in this movie also prove to be able to do that.
* ''Film/RedEye'' anybody? The Jackson/Lisa relationship is ''built'' on this.
* Creator/HeathLedger's portrayal of the Joker from ''Film/TheDarkKnight'' has shades of this with everyone he comes into contact with, especially with Batman, Harvey, and Rachel.
* The Green Goblin and Film/SpiderMan1 in the first movie.
* Lili and [[strike:Tim Curry]] Satan from ''Film/{{Legend 1985}}''.
* ''Film/{{Inception}}'': At times, Cobb and Mal can become this. ''Especially'' on Mal's part.
** ''Especially'' when you realize the "normal" Mal is never shown, only the Mal after Cobb's first inception and the Mal Cobb created in his mind. [[MindScrew Mind games]] indeed.
** Since everyone Robert Fischer interacts with in the movie is messing with his head in one way or another, {{Shipping}} featuring him tends to end up this way.
* ''Film/TheChroniclesOfNarnia'': The White Witch and Edmund.
* ''Film/NineAndAHalfWeeks'': ''Everything'' about the relationship on John's part is a MindGameShip -- emotionally, intellectually, sexually.
* ''Film/PeterPan'': Wendy and Captain Hook, as well as Peter Pan and Captain Hook.
** Tinkerbell to Wendy as well.
* ''The Stunt Man''.
* ''Film/TheWizardOfOz'': The Wicked Witch and Dorothy.
* Marissa's obsession with ''Film/{{Hanna}}''.
* ''Film/{{Unbroken}}'': Watanabe is fixated on Zamperini. He even tells him that from the moment they met, he knew they were alike and that they could have been friends if not for their opposing sides. Zamperini mainly just seems creeped out by the attention, especially since Watanabe spends a lot of his time trying to break Zamperini's spirit.
* Kim Jong-un, the leader of North Korea in ''Film/TheInterview'' and David Skylark. He pretends to be friends with David and even [[HoYay kisses him on the lips]] when playing spin the bottle but is well known for being AxCrazy and manipulative to practically everyone he comes into contact with.
* Dracula's behavior towards ''Film/VanHelsing'' and way of approaching him comes across as this.
* ''Film/{{Labyrinth}}'' has Jareth/Sarah with Jareth trying to tempt Sarah to stay with him with promises of love if she becomes his slave. He also torments her during her run throughout his labyrinth and tries his hardest to turn her brother into a goblin after she accidentally wishes for it. At one point he throws a snake at her while telling her "Don't defy me!" Various fanfics take this further.
* ''Film/StarWarsTheForceAwakens'' hints at this dynamic between Kylo Ren and Rey. Especially with the interrogation scene.

* ''Literature/HarryPotter'':
** Harry with Voldemort, and Snape to a lesser extent.
** Tom Riddle with Ginny in the [[Literature/HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets second book]].
** Dumbledore, in a benign sort of way, to Voldemort.
* ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'': Lara Raith seems to enjoy manipulating Harry Dresden a bit more than can be considered strictly professional.
* ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' Watch books
** Vetinari with ''anyone''. Namely Vetinari and Vimes, and also Vetinari and Moist, although they get less screen time together.
** This is usually how Susan/Teatime is played in FanFic.
* The relation between Valmont and Merteuil in ''[[Literature/DangerousLiaisons Les Liaisons Dangereuses]]'' can be interpreted as this.
* ''Literature/WarriorCats'': Presumably the basis of pretty much any shipping with [[ManipulativeBastard S]][[CompellingVoice o]][[ForTheEvulz l]].
* ''Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse'': When people ship Mitth'raw'nuruodo without making him into a DracoInLeatherPants, this tends to be his characterization. It's not uncommon to see him shipped with [[Literature/OutboundFlight Maris Ferasi]], a WideEyedIdealist who sees him as completely honorable and good.
* Hannibal Lecter and Clarice Starling. It started out with mild hints in ''Literature/SilenceOfTheLambs'' and then went full-bore into this trope in the next book. [[spoiler: In the end, Hannibal gets the girl.]]
* ''Literature/ForgottenRealms'': Jarlaxle and Entreri are this, though the platonic version. Unless it's SlashFic, in which case there's a 50/50 chance or better of Jarlaxle seriously screwing with Artemis' head for... other purposes. Though in all fairness, he ''is'' a [[MagnificentBastard drow]].
%%* ''Literature/ASeriesOfUnfortunateEvents'': Count Olaf and Violet.
* ''Literature/MaloryTowers'': Gwen and Mary-Lou and later Gwen and Clarissa (until she develops a spine). To what extent this applies depends on your personal take on the canon, but the "pushy, dominant partner in a near-exclusive friendship" theme is very much there, even if you're not prone to [[SchoolgirlLesbians subtextual interpretations]].
* ''Literature/ThePictureOfDorianGray'': Harry/Dorian and Basil/Dorian with all the HoYay implications too.
* ''Literature/GoneGirl'': Amy and Nick. Nick even says Amy's known for playing "mind games".
* ''Literature/{{Ripliad}}'': Tom and anyone. He's quite manipulative to Dickie, Marge, Peter, and Meredith while also appearing to care greatly for them in his own twisted way.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* The Blake/Avon and Avon/Vila ships in '' Series/BlakesSeven'' have shades of this: Avon's something of a LauncherOfAThousandShips.
* ''Series/BurnNotice'' Michael and Anson. Anson enjoys torturing Michael with his insights way too much.
* T-Bag/Michael from ''Series/PrisonBreak''. T-Bag/anyone really,
* In ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'', Angelus was apparently fond of it, doing it to Buffy during season 2 and Drusilla sometime in the 19th century. When they bring him back in ''Series/{{Angel}}'', he seems to take a special pleasure in playing with Fred and with Faith. Angelus just loves breaking hotties.
* ''Series/{{Lost}}'': Ben Linus. With just about everyone. [[MagnificentBastard And it is awesome.]]
* ''Series/{{Oz}}'': Ryan and Dr. Nathan. Then there's the chaotic Chris/Beecher relationship and the FoeYay-tastic rivalry between Schillinger/Beecher.
* In a much milder way this is how all of ''Series/{{House}}'''s relationships need to work, from the love of his life to the one-off characters he flirts with. Shipping him with Cuddy depends on this.
* Before their FoeYay became so unsubtle it could be carved with a [[ChainsawGood chainsaw]], the Doctor and the Master of ''Series/DoctorWho'' fit this trope. Their Jon Pertwee and Roger Delgado incarnations in particular took a certain amount of delight from their mutual manipulations and betrayals.
* ''{{Series/Firefly}}'':
** The fandom's tendency to ship River and Jayne often uses this as an aspect of it, as River ''does'' like to screw around with people's heads, when her own head isn't screwy itself.
** Ditto for Simon/Jayne, and even for Mal/Jayne.
* Lots of (good) [[PortmanteauCoupleName Mylar]] ([[Series/{{Heroes}} Sylar/Mohinder]]) will fall into this category. It's that screwed up a pairing.
** Sylar/Claire and Sylar/Peter are also rather heavy in this, with the ship element of the first being practically canon, at least from Sylar's side. That's just what Sylar's like.
** After gaining immortality, Sylar points out to Claire that as much as she might hate him, unless they both lose their powers, eventually it's going to be just the two of them for the [[WhoWantsToLiveForever rest of time]].
** Now that there's Elle, she's sometimes the aggressor with Claire, sometimes the subject with Mr. Bennet, and at least once even with [[CrackPairing Monica Dawson]].
* Patty and Ellen from ''{{Series/Damages}}'' are the definition of this, except now Ellen is also showing her ''ManipulativeBastard'' skills too.
* ''Series/{{Justified}}'' Raylan and Boyd. Boyd is one of the few people who can really push Raylan's buttons due to their shared past.
* ''Series/TheMentalist'' has Patrick Jane, the man who flirts with everyone while screwing with their heads. He reserves his most magical bits of mind-screw for Lisbon.
* Series/{{Sherlock}} gives us Sherlock/Irene and Sherlock/Moriarty.
** As does ''Series/{{Elementary}},'' especially since [[spoiler: that is in fact the same 'ship.]]
* Justin and Alex fit this trope to a tee in ''Series/WizardsOfWaverlyPlace''.
* The developments between [[MagnificentBastard Jim Keats]] and [[FishOutOfTemporalWater Alex Drake]] in season three of ''Series/AshesToAshes'' makes this one near-canonical. Keats wants to [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything tempt Alex away from Gene]] and [[TheCorrupter use her to bring Gene down]]. While there's no explicit sexuality in their relationship, they flirt during multiple episodes, and in the finale [[spoiler: Keats gets ''very'' touchy-feely with her under the guise of "comforting" her. Of course, it's revealed that he's quite possibly ''the Devil himself'', so the mind game elements are a lot less surprising]].
* Head Six to Dr. Gaius Baltar and Head Baltar to Caprica-Six in ''Series/{{Battlestar Galactica|2003}}''.
** [[StalkerWithACrush Leoben]]'s obsession with [[ByronicHero Starbuck]] has elements of this, most obvious in the first season episode Flesh and Bone. It's made explicit that he managed to get to her after all in her dream sequences later in the series.
* ''Series/RizzoliAndIsles'': In canon Hoyt has this kind of relationship with Jane. Jane wants no part of it.
* ''Series/{{Supernatural}}''
** [[MagnificentBastard Crowley]] tends to toss around double entendres like they're going out of style, but whenever he faces off against Castiel, the "sub" just goes out of the {{subtext}}.
** The Meg demon has now kissed Sam, Dean, and Castiel (two of them against their will, though). She also has creepy sexual-predator-esque vibes when she's got Sam tied-up in "Shadow" and with Jo when she's got her in the exact same situation in "Born Under a Bad Sign".
*** Castiel/Meg: he's an angel, she's a demon; she calls him "Clarence", he calls her an "abomination"; she eye-fucks him from the second they meet and she kisses him in an attempt to steal his angel blade when they first kiss (in true TakeThatKiss form). In Season 7, she reluctantly assists Team Free Will by acting as Castiel's caretaker when he goes insane from absorbing Sam's Hell-pain and he develops a kind of StockholmSyndrome-like crush on her. Meg's actress actually admits to Meg having a genuine crush on Castiel, something the demon is obviously not used to.
** Azazel gets chemistry with both Dean and Sam. He just loves to pin Dean to walls/graves and lean in far too close when emotionally tormenting him. It's especially disturbing/sexy/twisted when he's possessing Dean's Daddy in "Devil's Trap". Continued when Azazel possesses Dean's grandfather and moves into his personal space. There's also when he acted like a pervy uncle to Sam, calling him his "favorite". He canonically has this with both of their parents, too; he flat-out told Dean that he would have sex with Mary if he could and actually kissed her to seal a Deal with the Devil while wearing her father's corpse like a cheap suit. It's more of a case of FridgeHorror where John is concerned: he also made a deal with Azazel, meaning he also had to kiss him in order to seal it.
-->'''Azazel''': ''[walking up to John with an intense look on his face'' There's something else I want, as much as that gun. Maybe more...
** In the third season finale, Lilith kissed Sam and childishly told him that his lips were soft, right before killing Dean in front of him. Then there's the fact that she tried to seduce Sam into sealing a deal by having sex with her in "The Monster at the End of This Book"—it's a good thing that Dean and Chuck showed up in time, or she might've just raped him anyway. When she first appeared, though, she labelled Dean as the cute one. (And God knows what she did to Dean if she visited/tormented him in Hell.)
** And then there was also Alastair and Dean. With all the implications of "poking and prodding", Alastair acting like an stalker ex-boyfriend and even calling Dean "Daddy's little girl", as well as the implication that's gotten around to tormenting Dean in ''[[RapeAsDrama that]]'' way at some point.
** There's also a bit of Gordon/Dean going around. After all, Dean did get manipulated pretty badly by him in Bloodlust and wanted him as a Daddy figure. When Gordon becomes a vampire in Fresh Blood, he can sense Dean's scent all over the phone shop and before Sam beheads him with barbed wire, he slams Dean up against a wall and bites him, prompting an honest-to-god orgasm face.
** When Lucifer confronts Sam in "Free to Be You and Me", he tells Sam how he will hunt Sam down and force him to give consent to go into Sam. The threat sounds so much like a rape threat that the text and subtext are nigh interchangeable. Then when Lucifer finally possesses Sam, he spends most of his time taunting him, stating at one point that he's "taking the gag off" to allow Sam to speak and that they are "two halves made whole" and "MFEO" (made for each other).
*** Gets taken up to unbelievable levels after Sam gets stuck in the cage in Hell with Lucifer for well over a year. Balthazar says that Lucifer and Michael have probably been "hate-banging" Sam, and in "Hello, Cruel World" it's outright stated that Lucifer made Sam his "bitch in every sense of the term." Let's be honest, here: Sam's PTSD-induced hallucination of Lucifer spends half his screen-time acting like Sam's super-clingy girlfriend and the other half acting like his rapist. You can see it best in "Repo Man", where he goes from pouting about Sam's attempts to ignore him to talking about "the rapier wit; the wittier rape!"
** And now we have Abaddon/Dean which became canon after Abaddon kills several people to get Dean and Sam's attention, sends her minions after Sam and the other hunters with them, and zones in on Dean. Her first words to Dean? "I missed you. Did you miss me?" During their fight Dean tells Abaddon she's sending mixed signals and Abaddon explicitly states that she has wanted Dean since the moment she saw him and as soon as she gets the chance she will "Rip off this little no demons allowed tattoo and take you for a ride." Abaddon finally gets the upper hand and starts to make good on her threat until Ezekiel!Sam senses danger and comes to the rescue.
* ''Series/{{Hannibal}}''
** Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham [[spoiler: and confirmed canon season 3]].
** Lecter/Abigail is the het version, with a bonus mentor angle.
** Hannibal and Bedelia Du Maurier as well.
** It's safe to say that any ship involving Hannibal Lecter will involve this.
* ''Series/TheFollowing'': From the moment they meet Carroll seems to find Ryan fascinating. When Ryan's stops him in the flashback Carroll's every action from that moment on is to draw Ryan back to him: the cult; the book; even his ex-wife are all bait to bring Ryan to him. He even goes so far as to set up one of his cultist to be Ryan's friend with benefits; has her report to him about Ryan's well being and has her bug EVERY room of Ryan's home so when he escapes he has video of everything Ryan has done that he can watch at his leisure. Including having sex.
* ''Series/{{Blacklist}}''
** Raymond Reddington gets this vibe with other characters occasionally, especially with Lizzie.
** Tom and Liz have this at first when he pretends to be her loving husband but later shows his true colors. He also is shown to have developed feelings for Liz in the time he was with her.
* ''Series/{{Gotham}}'': Oswald Cobblepot and James Gordon. He is a ManipulativeBastard, seems to have a thing for Gordon, and they tend to have NoSenseOfPersonalSpace around another. Seems to be NoYay for Gordon though.
** Richard Sionis develops a major interest in Gordon the minute Gordon steps into his office. He comments on his fiery attitude with an almost seductive voice and wonders if Gordon has a natural knack for killing.
** Fish Mooney and Cobblepot's manipulative relationship.

* ''Music/MindGames'' by Music/JohnLennon: the title track deals with mind games between people and says that "love is the answer".

* ''Theatre/{{Othello}}'': There are interpretations of Iago and Othello like this.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* This role can be played by [=GLaDOS=] from ''VideoGame/{{Portal}}''.
* Sephiroth from ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' did this to Cloud quite a bit in the original, but by the Compilation his sole ''raison d'etre'' seemed to be to touch Cloud's brain in intimate places, and it's marvelous fuel for the [[FoeYay Cloud/Sephiroth]] shippers.
** It gets played up even more in ''KingdomHearts'' and ''VideoGame/DissidiaFinalFantasy'', with Sephiroth exhibiting definite StalkerWithACrush tendencies toward poor Cloud.
* This is also how the [[FoeYay Gary/Petey]] couple in ''VideoGame/{{Bully}}'' is usually played. It probably helps that one of the earliest times we see Gary and Petey interact it's Gary getting up in his face to taunt him about liking to watch the swim team and alternately calling him a sick sad pervert and sick, sad and closeted gay. And he expresses a desire to make him into a real man. (Or a woman. Or ''something''.) ''Un''fortunately, some people don't seem to quite grasp the subtle delights of a good old-fashioned mind game, and [[DracoInLeatherPants turn Gary into just a misunderstood, gentle, good-hearted woobie]].
* Any pairings involving [[ImplacableMan Pyramid]] [[MemeticMolester Head]] of ''Franchise/SilentHill'' will inevitably be this trope, due mostly to his role of penetrating (ahem) a character's mind and doing all sorts of nasty things with it.
* Maleficent and Riku in ''KingdomHearts''. Well, it's either that or a MrsRobinson deal, depending on your perspective...
** [[TheStarscream Marluxia]] and Namine have ''definite'' [[{{Squick}} undertones of this.]]
* Alma and Becket in ''VideoGame/FirstEncounterAssaultRecon 2'': Project Origin to a very disturbing degree.
* This is generally accepted by the ''VideoGame/TheWorldEndsWithYou'' fandom to be Joshua and Neku's relationship and primarily because Joshua mixes MindScrew with HoYay like Reese's mixes peanut butter with chocolate. This comes from [[AlternateUniverse Another Day]], which uses alternate universe versions of the main characters. {{Yaoi Fangirl}}s have picked it up and run off with it anyway.
-->'''Joshua:''' I could never live with myself if I let you go alone. Let's spend some quality time.\\
'''Beat:''' Whoa ho ho! You guys are... Like, you ain't...\\
'''Shiki:''' Blue and Pink!? Sure, they go.. but I didn't know they went LIKE THAT!\\
'''Neku:''' Now look what you've done!
** Joshua also lays it on thick right from their very first meeting, after he forces them in to a pact:
--->'''Joshua:''' The name's Yoshiya Kiryu. But Mother and Father call me Joshua.\\
'''Neku:''' Please don't tell me...\\
'''Joshua:''' I guess you can call me Joshua, too - seeing as how you're my dear, dear partner. Hee hee...
** He openly admits in the same conversation that he was watching over/stalking Neku, and was impressed with him. The HoYay continues with Josh's teasing and Neku's attempts to fight it dwindling as he starts to finally get used to his eccentric 'partner'. When [[spoiler: [[TearJerker he "dies" saving him from Sho]]]], we all end up liking him, and it makes the MindScrew elements that much harder to deal with. It's revealed that [[spoiler:he escaped to a parallel world (one obsessed with Tin Pin, according to the Reports) during his HeroicSacrifice]], and he glibly tells Neku that [[spoiler:he ''had'' tried to kill him before the Game]], after Neku had been guilt-ridden for the whole week thinking that [[spoiler:Josh was innocent and that his mistrust got him killed.]] Despite this, [[spoiler:Neku risks his own life and the existence of Shibuya to avoid shooting Josh]], even after he's revealed himself to be [[spoiler:the [[BigBad Composer]] who wants to destroy Shibuya (to save the rest of the world from its corruption) and challenged him to a duel with pistols. [[KickTheDog Josh ''does'' shoot]], but he also [[PetTheDog resurrects them all and leaves Shibuya alone]], [[HeelFaceTurn changing his mind]], and in the ending, while Neku says that while he can't forgive him, he still trusts him.]]
* While [[BigBad Mephiles]] from VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog2006 probably [[CanonDiscontinuity won't be showing up in any other Sonic games any time soon]], there are those who like the character enough for him to fit in this trope as the manipulator. Being one of the biggest [[ManipulativeBastard manipulative bastards]] the franchise has ever seen (meta-wise) doesn't hurt.
* ''Franchise/AceAttorney'' FanFic likes to do this with Kristoph Gavin/anyone (especially Phoenix).
* In ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'', [[MagnificentBastard The]] [[MemeticMolester Spy]] in pretty much any pairing, and the Medic when {{wimpifi|cation}}ed.
** Ironically enough, this is [[SubvertedTrope subverted]] with the (RED) Spy's canonical love interest, [[BrattyHalfPint Scout's]] [[YourMom mother]]. Despite the initial implication he's just with her [[ItAmusedMe to piss off Scout]], [[PetTheDog he's shown to actually care for her.]]
* In ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'' fic, this is involved in pretty much any pairing that includes [[BigBad Yggdrasill]].
* In ''VideoGame/TalesOfGraces'' anything [[HoYay between Richard and Asbel]] could be seen as this [[spoiler: if Lambda gets involved. Particularly when he's in Richard, since that spices Richard's obvious crush on Asbel with flavours of {{Yandere}}]]
* Link and Ghirahim of ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaSkywardSword''. In a strange case, Ghirahim isn't really that manipulative, but he gets really close with Link when they meet.
* No subtext needed, this is pretty much the ''actual'' relationship between the PC and [[spoiler: Damien]] in ''VisualNovel/MagicalDiary''. It starts as a romantic pairing, and gets [[FalseFriend progressively]] [[MoralEventHorizon more]] [[BecomingTheMask messed]] [[BastardBoyfriend up]].
* Vamp and Raiden in ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid''. Shows up in canon too.
* Batman and Joker, naturally, in the ''VideoGame/BatmanArkhamSeries''. Hugo Strange, Bane, Scarecrow, and most of the Rogues' Gallery all get in on the act with Batman at certain points too (which isn't too surprising, considering Batman's overall themes around detective work and mental illness, and Batman's own intellect being his most defining trait), but Joker's the most consistent and prominent:
** Joker goes beyond mere MindScrew and actually manages to get his ''blood'' inside Batman, [[spoiler: which then naturally leads to Batman hallucinating Joker throughout the entirety of the final game, as being ''part of'' him now - MindGameShip taken UpToEleven!]]

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* Battler and Beatrice from ''VisualNovel/UminekoWhenTheyCry''. Beatrice is a witch with absolute power of life and death over Battler, to the point of casually killing and resurrecting him to prove a point, and is always gloating over new and extravagant ways to make him question his grasp on reality. Battler, in return, adamantly refuses -- to her face -- to believe in the existence of witches or any power these nonexistent beings might or might not have over him. By the end of the fourth chapter, though, the one thing neither can deny is the heaping amounts of {{UST}} that exist between them. [[spoiler:They get married at the end of Episode 6.]] In Beatrice's own words: [[LargeHam "Let's start torturing each other, USHIROMIYA BATTORAAAAAAA!!"]]
* Taichi and [[spoiler: Touko]] from ''VisualNovel/CrossChannel'', albeit a surprisingly ''real''/different example where both parties are insane. Taichi's the only one playing mind-games, but after he realizes what [[spoiler: Touko]]'s "problems" are, he hurriedly tries to cut the relationship short, leading to [[spoiler: Touko ''stabbing herself'' in an attempt to get Taichi to love her again.]] Given that the story takes disorders very seriously, this example is especially tragic.

[[folder: Web Comics ]]
* ''Webcomic/MegaTokyo'': Miho/Anyone.
* Rojo of ''Webcomic/CuantaVida'' keeps talking about how he likes Bleu. The first time he said this was immediately before putting out a cigarette on Bleu's face.
* Wanda of ''{{Webcomic/Erfworld}}'' has a definite thing for Jillian Zamussels, her "favorite prisoner" and frequent torture subject. There are explicit instances (such as their first interaction in the strip) and constant overtones of FoeYay and LesYay, not to mention MoreThanMindControl when Jillian is later released with the intent of becoming TheMole. Even after all this, Jillian still feels strongly for Wanda and continually tries to persuade her to defect.
* In ''Webcomic/TheAdventuresOfDrMcNinja'', King Radical towards Dr. [=McNinja=] (in a totally awesome way).
* ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'' features a veritable queen of this trope, [[Characters/HomestuckTrollsThree Vriska Serket]], who has mind control powers and throws them around in a frankly cavalier manner. When she's not forcing people to cripple themselves for her amusement, she's systematically undermining their self-esteem and basically just making them cry. Naturally she gets shipped with everyone. We also have [[BlindSeer Terezi Pyrope]], who doesn't even need mind control powers to manipulate you, and gets under Vriska's skin more than anyone else in the universe. Naturally she gets shipped with Vriska and also everyone else. In fact, a good quarter of ''Homestuck'''s main cast is populated by [[OurTrollsAreDifferent members of an alien species]] [[BizarreAlienReproduction whose romantic lives revolve entirely around this]].
** Dirk Strider seems to make [[InvokedTrope more or less deliberate attempts]] to fit into this trope towards his crush Jake, but rather than the ironic puppetmaster he wants to be seen as, [[WrongGenreSavvy he comes off as]] clingy, overbearing, socially awkward, and stalker-y. All of which is accurate.
* From ''Webcomic/{{Roommates}}'' the Mr. King / Mrs. Norrington ship qualifies and they are pretty evenly matched in the mind games department. MagnificentBastard / TheGadfly, one manipulates for his own agenda the other ForTheLulz (and because she can).
* Billy Thatcher and Amical from ''[[{{Webcomic/morphe}} morphE]]''. Amical is a kidnapper who flirts aggressively with his captives and uses a number of kind and cruel tactics to turn his students in to friends, allies and sometimes (at least it is implied) romantic partners. Billy is desperate to use all the weapons at his disposal, including Amical's tendancy to flirt, to help him win freedom. Any scene that involves them throwing barbs and trying to work the other has a very noticable undertone of this trope.
* [[ManipulativeBastard Jassart]] and [[TheChessmaster Vivienne]] in ''Webcomic/SnowByNight''. Both are obviously playing each other to obtain what they want: Vivienne wants information while Jassart wants social and/or political power. The thing is [[http://www.snowbynight.com/pages/ch10/pg20.php who's getting ahead.]]

[[folder:Web Original]]
* Any pairings with [[WebVideo/AskThatGuyWithTheGlasses Ask That Guy]] ''will'' be this trope, especially when the fandom ships him with WebVideo/TheNostalgiaCritic or [[WebVideo/TheSpoonyExperiment Dr. Insano]].
* ''WebAnimation/HappyTreeFriends'' fandom sometimes does this with [[AxCrazy Evil Flippy]] and Flaky, or [[ScrewYourself Good Flippy and Evil Flippy]].
** This is carried on in the show as well, especially in the latter episodes, where Flaky becomes terrified of Flippy and tries to get rid of him in any possible way, even though he doesn't kill her anymore and acts really nice to her. In ''Without A Hitch'' he acts nicely and tries to help her, but she constantly thinks he's following her to murder her so she ends up [[spoiler: stabbing him]].

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'': Eric Cartman/Kyle. And Cartman/Butters.
* The eponymous WesternAnimation/InvaderZim's rivalry with his archenemy Dib has shades of this.
* Slade/Robin, Slade/Raven, Blackfire/Starfire, and Slade/Terra from ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans''. There's also Red X/Robin, Red X/Starfire, Malchior/Raven, Jinx/Raven, Trigon/Raven, and Cyborg/Brother Blood. The show has definite [[FoeYay undertones]] to support each shipping. Red X/Raven is getting to be a popular MindGameShip on Website/FanFictionDotNet.
* Similar to [[WesternAnimation/TeenTitans Slade/Robin]], ''WesternAnimation/DannyPhantom'' gave us Vlad/Danny.
* ''WesternAnimation/ThePowerpuffGirls'': It looks like some might see this in Him and Bubbles, since Him tends to target Bubbles before the group as a whole.
* ''WesternAnimation/CodenameKidsNextDoor'': Numbuh 1 has a bit of this going on with the [[CreepyChild Delightful Children From Down The Lane]].
* ''WesternAnimation/GravityFalls'': Bill Cipher and Dipper Pines. Ships involving Bill in general tend to be this, if he stays at all in-character. Some people like to portray the way Bill manipulated [[spoiler:Ford into unwittingly helping to bring about TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt (which Ford doesn't like discussing [[MyGreatestFailure for obvious reasons]])]] as if it was a very unhealthy relationship.
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'': Discord and... [[LauncherOfAThousandShips any of the Mane Six]] or Celestia.
** In the both the show and fanon, [[ManipulativeBastard Discord]] has this going with any other character he interacts with.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* UsefulNotes/PeterMandelson towards then-Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer "Boy" George Osborne. They've since apparently made it up. No, [[RealityIsUnrealistic probably]] not like that. [[TemptingFate Who knows]].


''Roses are blue\\
Violets are red\\
It's cute how you squirm\\
When I get in your head''