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[[quoteright:300:[[{{Franchise/Superman}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/111_8082.png]]]]
[-[[caption-width-right:300:[[NarratingTheObvious This guy must be tough; he's beating up Superman!]]]]-]

->''"He's the guy who's here to act tough so new characters can wreck him when they're introduced thus proving to the rest of us how amazing they are! Like [[Franchise/XMen Wolverine]] or [[Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration Worf]]."''
-->-- '''Red Mage''', ''Webcomic/EightBitTheater''

Want a quick way to show how dangerous one of your unknown characters is? Simple, make him do well or win in a fight with a character that the audience already knows is tough. This establishes him as willing to fight and marks him as sufficiently dangerous.

For new villains, it's common for them to pick up the toughest character among the heroes and hurl him across the room or otherwise take him out in one blow, thus showing that they are the real deal. When used sparingly and appropriately, this is a powerful way to establish said villain as a serious and credible threat, leaving the audience thinking, "Wow, he just beat up ''Worf''! He must be bad news!" Of course, if the same character is repeatedly used as the target of displays like these, it can result in BadassDecay, and if abused, his toughness could become an InformedAbility.

WorfHadTheFlu is sometimes used to {{justif|iedTrope}}y Worf's poor showing. TheWorfBarrage is when an "ultimate" attack or technique is defeated this way instead of a character. If a new villain introduces himself by beating the previous villain, that's MakeWayForTheNewVillains (a {{subtrope}}). When Worf gets beaten ''emotionally'' rather than physically, that's BreakTheBadass.

Compare BadassInDistress and TheWorldsExpertOnGettingKilled, both of which can overlap. Killing off a RedShirt or two is a slightly different method for achieving a similar effect. If the character beats up a whole ''army'''s worth of Worfs, ConservationOfNinjutsu is probably at work. Contrast FightDracula, in which a writer has a pre-established character (as opposed to a new one) demonstrate their awesomeness by fighting Dracula (but not necessarily winning). See also [[Analysis/TheWorfEffect the analysis page]] for some side analysis of this trope.

Named for the tendency in ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' for hostile creatures [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nXrlhN9rPoc to do that very thing to Worf.]]

[[noreallife]]
----
!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[index]]
* TheWorfEffect/AnimeAndManga
* TheWorfEffect/ComicBooks
* TheWorfEffect/LiveActionTV
* TheWorfEffect/VideoGames
* TheWorfEffect/WesternAnimation
[[/index]]

[[folder:Advertising]]
* One of the cause-and-effect-chain [=DirecTV=] commercials goes thusly, with lines 5-7 exemplifying this:
--> When your cable TV company keeps you on hold, you get angry …
--> When you get angry, you go blow off steam …
--> When you go blow off steam, accidents happen …
--> When accidents happen, you get an eye patch …
--> When you get an [[EyePatchOfPower eye patch]], people think you’re tough …
--> When people think you’re tough, they want to see how tough…
--> And when people see how tough, you wake up in a roadside ditch …
--> Don’t wake up in a roadside ditch
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fan Fiction]]
* In general, whenever there's a new character(s) created by the author or characters from other works in {{Crossover}}s to show how tough they are by [[CurbstompBattle easily defeating the oppoenents]] that the canon characters have trouble with.
* Original-creation and self-insertion characters in ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'' fanfiction are obligated to prove their worth by making mush out of Kuno when they first meet him. And although he's more of an IronButtmonkey than a Worf, that's only on a relative scale: even someone at the bottom of the ''Ranma'' totem pole is still superhumanly strong, fast, and skilled by real-world standards.
* Similar to the ''Franchise/JurassicPark'' examples below, ''Fanfic/RiseOfTheGaleforces'' applies this trope to the [[NinjaPirateZombieRobot Turret Raptors,]] who are quickly defeated by even the youngest members of the main cast. Ditto for the local {{Eldritch Abomination}}s, e.g. Dynacide.
* Epic from ''Disgaea: Jewel of the gods'' is an example. He's introduced by taking out an immortal, giant enemy that Laharl, Adell, and Mao couldn't beat. After that he get's dominated by Etna, a reaper, Baal's minions, Baal's right hand man Fried, Baal, Raiden, and Alex, mixing in some ButtMonkey status along the way.
** Well, what would you expect from a [[ChewToy Prinny?]]
* Deconstructed in the ''FanFic/PonyPOVSeries'' with [[spoiler:Spitfire. The repeated failures of the Wonderbolts to actually succeed in their heroic attempts begin to take their toll on her confidence and send her into a HeroicBSOD. Rainbow Dash snaps her out of it by reminding her that, even if the Wonderbolts can't do the ''actual'' heroics, they are still heroes because they ''inspire'' ponies who ''can''.]]
** [[BadFuture Dark World!]]Spike gets hit with this pretty bad for a while, as his superior strength and flame breath are one way or another made ineffective -- [[{{Golem}} Tom]] is literally MadeOfDiamond, the blackbirds could regenerate near instantly, and by the time [[TheStarscream the Valeyard]] was out of his protective shield, Spike had already been disabled (he lampshades the last one). However, the trope is ironically subverted during the fights with [[spoiler: [[OneWingedAngel Odyne!]][[TheDragon Cruelty]]]] and [[spoiler: [[TrueFinalBoss Nightmare Eclipse/Paradox]]]], the two strongest opponents in Dark World, as Spike manages to be as effective as everyone else.
* [[spoiler:Abyssgreymon]] in the Digimon fanfic [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/7623289/1/ Transcendence: Digital Curse]] worfs everyone from the first two digimon adventures plus two other champions without even being touched. He apparently does this without wanting to or trying.
* Each of the {{Big Bad}}s in the ''FanFic/AzulaTrilogy'' prove themselves to be threats by being able to match or defeat one of the heroes -- Azun defeats Zuko in ''Heart'', Wei Ming goes toe-to-toe with Azula in ''Path'', and Jian Chin defeats Aang in ''Soul'' (though the latter two were [[DemonicPossession possessed]] by [[TheManBehindTheMan true]] BigBad [[spoiler: Zhan Zheng]] at the time, so this trope more works for him than them).
* In ''Fanfic/TheTrollWar'' series, after Equius Zahhak resigns from the human starfleet and then explains his reason: "I have been...[[AliensStealCable reviewing your documentaries and the history of your spaceships]], John. And I will not be the 'Worf'." John Egbert convinces Equius to stay, not by telling him that ''Star Trek'' was fictional, but by promising he won't let the fleet "Worf" him.
* In ''Fanfic/UninvitedGuests'', this is ''[[InvokedTrope invoked]]'' by Hitsugaya in order to beat Aizen's PlotArmor. Enter "[[FillerVillain the Dark Lord Wolfington]]," who is [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial definitely not Komamura in a mask.]]
* ''FanFic/InnerDemons'': Twilight manages to [[spoiler: turn Princess Celestia [[TakenForGranite to stone]]]] by ''accident'' even before her FaceHeelTurn, which gives a good idea of just how powerful and dangerous her [[EnemyWithin Queen persona]] will later be. Which is proven true when one of the first things Queen!Twilight does is [[spoiler: completely [[CurbStompBattle wipe the floor]] with Princess Luna]].
** The first time we see one of Queen!Twilight's lieutenants fight the protagonists, [[spoiler: Scootaloo not only beats Rainbow Dash in a race, but leaves her unconscious in a ditch]]. Said lieutenant goes on to successfully fight the rest of the Element bearers and their allies, and very nearly defeats them, only being stopped by [[spoiler: Rainbow Dash and Pinkie Pie's Elements evolving to armor]].
** Speaking of which, an inverted example -- every time one of the Element bearers succeeds in [[spoiler: getting their elements to evolve to armor]], they easily Worf whatever they're fighting. The only exception is Rarity's offscreen fight with [[TheDragon Trixie]], which she loses, but even then it's implied that the fight was even enough that Queen!Twilight had to step in to end it.
* In ''Naruto Mysterious Power'', when [[spoiler: the Sakura from the future]] confronts the main characters at the end, she demonstrates her power by proceeding to defeat [[spoiler: Temari, Naruto, Fu, Hinata and Haku]] in quick succession, despite [[spoiler: Naruto attacking her with over 50 different jutsu using his shadow clones and Jinchuriki chakra]], which she easily blocks and nearly kills the real one with just two raikiri in each hand. The fans were immensely shocked and compared her to a Dragon Ball Villain. Earlier, the main villian [[spoiler: the Sasuke from the same future]], demonstrated this by using [[spoiler: His Susanno to fight off a transformed Gaara, Yugito and Killer Bee at once]]
* In ''Naruto and the Last Vampiress'', Orochimaru shows off how powerful he is by defeating [[spoiler: Sasuke, Naruto and Hinata]], despite the first two being much stronger than normal and the third being turned into a super powered vampire. Despite having his spine repeatably broken, being set on fire and suffering an exploding 1000 years of death, he just would not die.
* In ''Percy Jackson; Olympus Divided'', Artemis suffers this, being brutally defeated by, out of all people, [[spoiler: Apollo]].
* In ''Moon Heir Part 1'', to demonstrate how dangerous Ragnarok is, their first big action in the series was to [[spoiler: destroy Camp Half Blood]] taking down baddass demigods like [[spoiler: Nico, Annabeth, Clarisse and Thalia]].
* ''[[FanFic/UltimateSleepwalker Ultimate Sleepwalker: The New Dreams]]'' features an example between the villains Bullseye and 8-Ball when they fight after being hired by rival crimelords who are having a MobWar. In the official Marvel comics, Bullseye is an AxCrazy sadist who's seen as one of the most dangerous street-level villains in New York. 8-Ball, on the other hand, is a classic example of CListFodder. When they fight, Bullseye plays up his supposed A-list status and mocks 8-Ball for his supposed C-list status, but 8-Ball wins the fight and ends it by knocking Bullseye's severed head into a trashcan like a billiard ball.
* ''FanFic/ThePowersOfHarmony'': First time we see [[BigBad Cetus]] in action, she [[spoiler: defeats Celestia, and kills Grovi.]]
** Likewise, [[TheDragon Eclipse's]] first fight has her [[CurbStompBattle curbstomping]] Applejack, Granny Smith, Big Macintosh, and their Guards, [[spoiler: even killing Strauss.]]
** And the two of them working together easily defeat all of the remaining Mane Six and all their Guards, [[spoiler: including killing Elo.]]
* ''[[Fanfic/AFutureOfFriendshipAHistoryOfHate A Future of Friendship, A History of Hate]]'': When [[BigBad Ruinate]] gets loose, he quickly overpowers the Princesses and takes the Mane Six (minus Twilight) prisoner. And then, when they actually have a chance to use the Elements on him, he's already attuned himself to them and shrugs the attack off. It takes [[DivineIntervention help]] from [[BigGood Amity]] to give the ponies a chance to defeat him.
* In ''Fanfic/MassEffectHumanRevolution'', the AIA's Blacklight commandos have gotten their arses handed to them easily in three separate encounters with Adam, Johann and Hannibal.
* ''FanFic/JusticeLeagueOfEquestria'':
** ''Mare of Steel'': Rainbow Dash/[[Franchise/{{Superman}} Supermare]]'s first fights with [[DiscOneFinalBoss General Zod]] and {{Brainiac}} both go poorly for her, showing just how dangerous both villains are.
** ''The Princess of Themyscira'': [[WonderWoman Diana]]'s first fight with the [[ArtifactOfDoom Alicorn Amulet]]-powered [[GodOfEvil Ares]], while evenly matched at first, still ends with her beaten into unconsciousness and needing to be saved by Soarin'.
* In ''FanFic/ANewOrder'' the first fight after Haruka's awakening as [[Anime/SailorMoon Sailor Uranus]] is also the first operation Jadeite is put in charge of. Haruka is several years older than the other senshi, trained in hand-to-hand combat, and an outer senshi (meaning she's supposedly stronger than the inners). In spite of this, the battle ends with her [[spoiler: near death and in the hospital for several chapters]] though she did manage to kill the youma she was facing.
* In the ''WesternAmination/JackieChanAdventures'' and ''WesternAnimation/{{WITCH}}'' crossover fanfic ''Fanfic/{{Kage}}'' (part of FanFic/ProjectDarkJade, like ''FanFic/ShadowsAwakening'' below), [[EnemyWithin The Queen]] briefly manages to take control of Jade and uses [[CastingAShadow shadow-based]] CombatTentacles to capture [[BadassNormal Caleb]] and the {{Elemental Power|s}}[=-=]equipped Guardians, with perhaps the only reason they survived being Jade retaking control when she saw her reflection in a puddle.
** She later ends up on the receiving end when Elyon nearly kills her in a fit of rage (note that [[PsychoactivePowers rage makes Elyon more powerful]]).
* ''FanFic/ShadowsAwakening'': The first fight between the J-Team and [[BigBad Daolon Wong's]] new [[QuirkyMinibossSquad dark chi warriors]] ends with the heroes being forced to retreat and escape.
** Jade's tribe of [[AmazonBrigade Kunoichi Khan]] inflict this on Won's wizard Shadowkhan in turn, showing just how effective they are as {{Mage Killer}}s.
* In the first chapter of ''WakingNightmares'', one of the Nightmare Dogs (not even a named character) nearly kills [[PhysicalGod Princess Celestia]] with one unexpected strike. In a later scene, Slenderman kills [[=RED=]] Demoman and [[=RED=]] Medic in one hit ''while they're ubercharged''. (For non-''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' players, that means they're completely invulnerable.) The Doctor is hit by a verbal version when their enemies reveal that they know who he is... and aren't the slightest bit afraid. Until then, everything that has ever faced him and survived has learned to fear The Oncoming Storm.
* In chapter two of ''Fanfic/{{Bait and Switch|STO}}'' and [[Recap/StarTrekOnlineFoundryBaitAndSwitch the Foundry mission it's based on]], this happened offscreen; only the aftereffects are shown. To drive home how much trouble Starfleet's having in the Beta Ursae sector block, the USS ''Defiant'' was badly damaged, but not irreparably, by a rogue Cardassian legate playing warlord.
* In ''Fanfic/TheSwarmOfWar'', the Overmind’s first mental battle is against [[http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Ahzek_Ahriman Ahzek Ahriman]]. That’s a ten thousand years old Badass with knowledge and power only surpassed by the Greater Daemons and Primarchs… and he barely manages to flee.
* {{Fanfic/Nightfall}}: When Hades shows up he easily lays out Dave and Rose, and overpowers John and Vriska. With only Vriska and Dave managing to hit him. Jade steps in and brings the battle to a stalemate, and he's later whisked off by one of his "allies."
* ''FanFic/TheInfiniteLoops'' will usually play this for laughs, showing how a dangerous threat in canon is curbstomped by competent Loopers. It's been inverted on occasion, though, either to show that a Looper has ''no idea'' what they're facing or that things are just that serious.
* In the ''FanFic/FacingTheFutureSeries'', Vlad Plasmius and Dark Danny, two of the most powerful villains in the the ''WesternAnimation/DannyPhantom'' series that Danny would normally have problems against are completely overpowered by Danny's feral SuperMode on two occasions. He nearly would have destroyed them both (and himself) if not for Sam talking him down.
* In ''FanFic/DiamondInTheRough'', [[spoiler:Flandre is subject to this. She agrees fighting according to the spellcard rules, but when the Diamondback's beasts start to cheat, she loses because she refused to disobey the rules.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* ''Franchise/StarTrek''
** Worf himself did not escape this trope when it came time for the cast of ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' to make it to the big screen. In ''Film/StarTrekFirstContact'', his ship ([[Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine Deep Space 9's]] ''Defiant'', a SuperPrototype originally designed with the Borg in mind, if you're keeping track) is damaged early on against a massive Borg Cube and he is forced to hang out on the Enterprise for the rest of the movie. But averted for most of the movie when he proceeds to wreck every Borg drone he encounters.
** Worf's grandfather suffered from this in ''Film/StarTrekVITheUndiscoveredCountry'', only instead of getting physically beaten up he got owned in court whilst trying to defend Kirk and [=McCoy=].
** Other Klingons suffer from this tendency, too. In ''Film/StarTrekTheMotionPicture'', the opening sequence is three Klingon ships, all looking quite badass...and all three get taken to pieces in about ten seconds by V'Ger. For that point forward, Birds of Prey were about as [[BadassDecay durable as tissue paper]].
** In ''Film/StarTrekIntoDarkness'', a bunch of Klingons (of course) ring it in as jobbers to show how powerful John Harrison is.
** And the ''Enterprise'' itself, boasted as one of the most advanced ships in the Federation fleet, [[spoiler:gets curbstomped by the ''Vengeance'' without even being able to fire a single shot back]].
* Just like his comic counterpart, {{Wolverine}} gets this treatment in the [[Film.{{X-Men}} X-Men movie series]]. {{Magneto}}, Mystique, Sabertooth, Lady Deathstrike, and the Juggernaut all had their way with him throughout the series to show how tough they are. [[GoodThingYouCanHeal Good Thing He Can Heal]]!
** In ''Film/XMenFirstClass'', [[spoiler:When he confronts the First Class, Shaw kills one of them in the conflict. Who does he kill? The guy whose power is gaining the traits he needs to survive in any situation.]]
* ''Franchise/{{Terminator}}'':
** In ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay'' we see the T-800 (Arnold), the 6'2" unstoppable killer robot who for the whole last movie was one of the most menacing things ever put to film, get thrown around like a rag-doll by the considerably shorter and skinnier T-1000. Mainly at the end of the movie, though; earlier in the film he tends to keep the upper hand. For the most part, if its a gunfight, the impervious T-800 will win. If it's a fistfight, the intangible T-1000 will win.
** Even more pronounced in ''Film/Terminator3RiseOfTheMachines'', in which the ''even stronger'' T-X repeatedly defeats the Arnold Terminator in direct combat. He gets blasted inactive by a bolt from her plasma cannon, thrown through walls, gets his head knocked off and reprogrammed by her, [[spoiler:and only defeats her by blowing himself up as well.]]
* The ''Franchise/JurassicPark'' movies gauges the danger-levels of characters against the [[TyrannosaurusRex T-Rex]] ([[StockDinosaurs the most well-known dinosaur even before the movies came out]]) in order to let the audience know how tough they were:
** Muldoon takes on a T-Rex early in [[Film/JurassicPark the first film]] and holds his own, but is then easily outsmarted and killed by the Velociraptors in order to establish them as more of a threat. Ironically, the T-rex later kills the Velociraptors.
** A T-Rex is killed by the Spinosaurus in ''Film/JurassicParkIII'' to show that it's tougher.
* Gandalf in ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'' is a powerful wizard, respected and feared by all. It is thus a very big deal when he is terrified of the [[spoiler:Balrog in Moria]] and showcases the [[spoiler:Balrog's power and the tragedy of Gandalf's defeat]]. Though he doesn't fight it, Legolas' reaction to [[spoiler: the Balrog]] is this: when the camera cuts to his face after Gandalf says the name of the new threat, the elf prince who is unflappable and composed throughout the trilogy, who stares down massive armies, mighty trolls, and rampaging mumakil without batting an eye, is ''[[http://www.freewebs.com/the_leaves_of_lorien/legolas_fear.jpg absolutely terrified]]''.
** Gandalf gets Worfed quite a bit throughout the movies. In ''The Fellowship Of The Ring'', he's [[CurbstompBattle curbstomped]] by Saruman, though he gets to pay that one back in the sequels when he [[CameBackStrong Comes Back Strong]]. The extended edition of ''The Return of The King'' has the Witch King shatter his staff, in the theatrical cut he 'merely' expresses apprehension at the thought of having to fight him. And in ''The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug'', he's easily defeated by the Necromancer/[[spoiler: Sauron]].
* Obi-Wan Kenobi had his fare share of worf effects through the ''Franchise/StarWars'' series. Obi-Wan was killed the first time we got to see Darth Vader in action, was getting beaten by Darth Maul (alongside his mentor) until Maul picked up the IdiotBall, and was beaten by Count Dooku twice.
* In ''Film/EnterTheDragon'', we get introduced to Williams' ability to kick butt. He then faces the BigBad, Mr. Han. It is the first time we actually see Han in action so naturally, this trope in invoked.
* In ''Film/TheRock'', the elite SEAL team sent in against the renegade Marines is quickly ambushed and massacred, leaving behind only the two non-[=SEALs=] that were accompanying them.
* In the 2011 film ''Film/{{Warrior}}'': We see Mad Dog crush his sparring partner with a spinning back elbow, only to be crushed himself by Tommy the first time we see him fight.
* This is played with on a meta level in ''Film/{{Wishmaster}}''. The evil Djinn's victims include people played by horror film icons such as Creator/RobertEnglund (Freddy Krueger from ''Franchise/ANightmareOnElmStreet''), Tony Todd (the eponymous ''Film/{{Candyman}}''), and Creator/KaneHodder (Jason Voorhees from ''Franchise/FridayThe13th''). It's a little hard to believe that this casting was not deliberate.
* In ''Film/PacificRim'', when Crimson Typhoon is introduced, its impressive combat record is listed along with a description of its ace pilots. When Cherno Alpha is introduced, it's revealed that not only is it a Mark 1 Jaeger, making it the oldest still functioning, but it's the largest and heaviest Jaeger around. It's also stated that the perimeter it was assigned to went 6 years without being breached by a {{Kaiju}} attack. [[spoiler: During the Hong Kong attack, both Alpha and Crimson get to show off their skills, but are completely destroyed by the two attacking Kaiju, effectively spelling out just how dangerous they must be to eliminate such powerful Jaegers with so little effort. Gipsy Danger's ability to defeat both by itself (albeit one at a time, ''after'' they had split up) illustrates just how powerful it is, despite the rust it has in some inconvenient places.]]
* From ''Film/VanHelsing'', Anna by Aleera, repeatedly throughout the movie. The above problem actually becomes an issue, as it turns Anna into a FauxActionGirl. For what it's worth, she gets even.
* In ''Film/DieHard2'', Colonel Stewart's men kill the SWAT team sent to protect Chief Controller Barnes when he goes to activate the antenna array in the Terminal Annex. Only [=McClane=] is able to kill all of them to prevent them from killing Barnes, too.
* In ''CaptainAmericaTheWinterSoldier'', anyone who faces against the titular villain is easily dealt with. Falcon suffered a CurbStompBattle while ''in his wing suit'', and Natasha, who put up one hell of a fight, was quickly overwhelmed by his combat ability and shot in the shoulder. The only exception to this is Steve, who early on defeated [[BadassNormal Batroc]] and an entire elevator filled with SHIELD agents entirely on his own. It's shown that Steve and the Winter Soldier are equals in one-on-one combat, due to being the only physically enhanced humans in the entire film. This is all to build suspense, as while Steve is the only one capable of defeating the Winter Soldier in combat, [[spoiler:he is also the ''least'' capable person of facing against him, due to the Winter Soldier's true identity as Bucky Barnes, Steve's long-thought dead best friend.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* In the ''{{Dragonlance}}'' series, kender are supposed to be immune to fear. Consequently, they're almost constantly having a strange, new, unfamiliar feeling to let the reader know something is so scary that even they got scared!
* Feral of ''SoonIWillBeInvincible'' is a rare literary example of this. A ferocious tiger-man who's ended the entire careers of supervillains, and his entire plot importance consists of being beaten up by a baseline human, being blown away by a mad scientist, being knocked out by a mad scientist, being beaten up by mecha-insect aliens in a flashback, and being beaten up by a mad scientist again.
* In the later novels of Creator/AlanDeanFoster's ''[[HumanxCommonwealth Flinx and Pip]]'' series, [[ABoyAndHisX Pip]] suffers from this trope. Any time a serious threat to Flinx presents itself, the very first thing it does is restrain or otherwise deal with his minidrag.
* The Giants in ''Literature/TheHeroesOfOlympus''. Despite being stated to be the greatest threat Olympus has ever faced and three revealed being so far created as direct counters to the most powerful Olympians they have all be defeated fairly easily. Possibly justified in Porpheryion at least was not at full power. That and Percy is just that badass, so a villainous example of OvershadowedByAwesome?
* In the final book of the original story arc in ''Literature/WarriorCats'', [[spoiler: the newly-introduced villain Scourge kills [[BigBad Tigerstar]] when all of the Clans are gathered, for spite, to intimidate the Clans into complying with his demands, and (we learn later) for revenge.]]
* The Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse has the Nohgri, silent-stalking little commando people who are ''very'' good fighters. The same [[TheThrawnTrilogy trilogy]] which introduces them has them accept Leia as the Mal'ary'ush, the Lady Vader, so some of them become her bodyguards. Very nearly every work set after that has them either inexplicably not present or getting tricked, out-tracked, and out-fought by ''everyone''. [[HandOfThrawn Shada Du'kal]] even wonders if their reputation is exaggerated, although she at least is a Mistryl shadow guard, only had to get past one of them, and had a very novel way of tricking him. This is taken to ridiculous depths in ''NewJediOrder''.
** For Karen Traviss, the Jedi are hateful incompetent death-deserving people fit only to [[CreatorsPet puff up her Mandalorians]]; hence they either convert, sit quietly and accept really pathetic {{Hannibal Lecture}}s while being very impressed, or are curb-stomped. Every. Time. A connection to TheForce which binds all things, shaves reaction times, oxygenates blood more efficiently, provides telekinetic abilities, enhances strength, and gives battle precognition sufficient to deflect blaster bolts into enemies with the narrow blade of a lightsaber is no match at all for the perfect warrior people with their beskar'gam armor!
** What's the best way to show how strong a villain in the Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse? Make him toss some Jedi around the room with his eyes closed and one hand behind his back. What's the best way to show how serious the situation is? Kill a few Jedi. In books, games, and comics, if a Jedi isn't a protagonist, he's fucked. ''Especially'' if he happens to meet [[StarWarsLegacy Sith]], [[KnightsOfTheoldRepublic Mandalorians]], [[StarWarsCloneWars Grievous]], [[StarWarsTheCloneWars Cad Bane]], or [[NewJediOrder extra galactic invaders]].
** In ''Literature/LegacyOfTheForce'', they have their villain stab [[VideoGame/DarkForcesSaga Kyle Katarn]] through the chest. Thankfully, this get's reversed, and Kyle's shown much more respect, in the ''FateOfTheJedi'' books.
** Played rather straight in the ''Revan'' prequel to ''StarWarsTheOldRepublic''. [[spoiler: The Sith Emperor casually kills a number of major supporting characters from KnightsOfTheOldRepublic, disfigures Revan and leaves him as little more than a charred mess. He is then kept alive as a power source for the Emperor, admittedly having some small influence over the Sith's mind which does help end the Great Galactic War, and is rescued during the game. But only so it can happen to him ''again'' at the hands of Imperial characters because his 300 years of imprisonment have driven him mad.]]
** In ''Literature/GalaxyOfFear'', ''Darth Vader'' is this once or twice. But it's used pretty carefully, considering - he's not part of the regular cast and never actually gets ''defeated'', but he's definitely brought in so the reader can go "Whoah! Vader {{Curb Stomp Battle}}s everyone! This guy must be tough!" In ''Army of Terror'' [[spoiler: Eppon]] holds his own against him in a lengthy fight, countering his best moves but having his countered in turn, and that fight never concludes. The [[spoiler: literal DarthVaderClone]] is also on nearly-equal footing and is only beaten because he has no lightsaber, but that might be expected.
* In the ''Franchise/StarTrek'' novel ''The Return'', Worf is pwned by, of all people, [[spoiler:the risen Kirk]], using a Klingon's best weapon. Consider who these novels are written by...supposedly.
* PeterDavid uses this sparingly in ''StarTrekNewFrontier'', mainly because the Excalibur's version of Worf, Kebron, is a veritable walking landmass. But being used sparingly, it's much more effective: When someone can topple Kebron, you know they're trouble.
** In addition, in David's Starfleet Academy novels, guess which Klingon gets in a fight with which Brikar on their very first day there?
* ''Literature/HarryPotter'':
** Mad-Eye Moody, master duelist who's put more Dark wizards in prison than any other Auror, has never won a serious fight in the text. True, his opponents are always either Voldemort's hardest core or Voldemort himself, but you'd think he'd save ''someone's'' butt given his street cred. [[spoiler: He is killed in the first few chapters of the seventh book, for the sole purpose of showing how ''serious business'' everything now is, embodying this trope.]] In one of [[Film/HarryPotter the movies]], we at least get to see him briefly knock over a [[{{Mooks}} random Death Eater]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pZWtt1oAPCM&t=1m50s using some sort of magic from his cane]].
** John Dawlish is even worse: he was introduced by Dumbledore [[InformedAbility praising his combat skills]] before warning him that he was no match for him, and since then he has lost every single fight he had, getting [[CurbStompBattle trounced faster than anyone could see]] by Dumbledore, either summarily manhandled by Hagrid or terrified into helplessness when he beat up a group of Aurors that underestimated him, defeated off-screen by Dumbledore a second time, defeated off-screen by the Order of the Phoenix to lay a false trail, summarily curbstomped by an extra, and when he was sent to take Neville's grandmother hostage...
--> '''Neville:''' Little old witch living alone, they probably thought hey didn't need to send anyone particularly powerful. Anyway, Dawlish is still in St. Mungo's and Gran's on the run.
* The ''Literature/Goosebumps'' novella, ''Attack of The Mutant'', has three ridiculous examples in a row. First, the Galloping Gazelle, an animal themed superhero with SuperSpeed, gets beaten by villain Molecule Man when the latter trips him and morphs into a leopard. The Gazelle runs in fear, while the titular mutant kills Molecule Man in the form of ''a pre-teen girl.'' Finally, the Mutant himself is destroyed when the protagonist Skipper tricks him into becoming a liquid([[RequiredSecondaryPowers he can't reassemble himself in this state]]). And Skipper is ''twelve-years old.''
* In ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'' Nynaeve in canon is one of the strongest channelers in the world. When a channeler comes along who is the ''best'' at something, this is often established by noting that they're better at it than Nynaeve. This isn't as egregious as it might be, because she has very little training, and raw power is often shown to not be equal to skill or technique.
** [[RetGone Balefire]] let the authors do this without actually losing the characters.
* There are many examples in Steve Alten's ''{{Meg}}'' series where a {{Megalodon}} defeats equally large and dangerous predators (to the point of bordering on VillainSue), but only the opening scene of the first novel qualifies (wherein Meg eats a TyrannosaurusRex) because the marine reptiles are too obscure to the general public to be this trope.
* Possibly lampshaded in ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' novel, ''Daemon World''. When a group of Word Bearer Chaos Marines board his ship, [[spoiler: Arguelon Veq]]'s first target is Vrox, an Obliterator (which, for the uninitiated, is a mutated monstrosity twice the size of regular Chaos Space Marines and can spawn weapons and armor from his body). After he kills Vrox with relative ease, he even comments that he was the least threatening of the Chaos Marines on board.
* ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'',
** In ''Discworld/GuardsGuards'' Carrot goes into the Mended Drum to break up one of their regular bar fights. The other Watchmen with him expect to see bits of him start flying out at any moment. Instead, Detritus (a troll, which on Discworld are made of solid rock) is the first to fly out. Unconscious. Softer targets follow. (It was previously established that Detritus was employed at the Drum as a Splatter. Like a bouncer, but people thrown by a troll tend not to bounce.)
** In ''Discworld/{{Sourcery}}'', the Sourceror Coin upon entering the Great Hall of the Unseen University asks the wizards who is the most powerful of them, so that he can duel him. Skarmer Billias, an eight grade wizard, steps up, seeing the challenge as a joke. After displaying his most powerful spell, creating a miniature of Maligree's Wonderful Garden, Coin counters by making the garden life-size and bringing all the wizards with him into it. After this display he incinerates Billias with a single thought.
* In ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'', [[SixthRangerTraitor David]] subjects [[TheLeader team leader]] Jake to this during their duel. Up until this point, Jake's tiger has been one of the most lethally efficient morphs the team has. Despite having a year's worth of battle experience David doesn't, Jake still loses. Badly.
* ''Literature/SeptimusHeap'': Nicko Heap in ''Physik'' is mentioned to be strong enough to tackle virtually anybody, but when he tries to attack Queen Etheldredda, she just swats him out of the way.
* Anyone Roran is sent to replace in ''Literature/InheritanceCycle''. Especially with [[spoiler: Queen Islanzadi near the end of the final book.]]
* ''Franchise/TheDarkTower'' [[spoiler: is an example of this trope taken UpToEleven. Mordred Deschain, who was recently born (not just introduced, but actually born a few hours earlier) was able to take out Randall Flagg, Stephen King's ubervillain, within about three pages.)]]
* ''{{Dune}}'': The Imperial Sardaukar are the most terrifying and deadly warriors in the known universe, and their only real purpose is to establish how much deadlier the Fremen are by getting their asses handed to them at every encounter. When they attack Paul's sietch, they take devastating losses fighting Fremen who are not even warriors. The Sardaukar are never a real threat when Fremen are involved.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Mythology and Folklore]]
* Tigers in East Asian fables tend to get sacrificed to show the badassery of various characters.
** Oni are almost always depicted as wearing a tiger skin on some part of their body, or at least tiger-teeth jewelry.
** The first thing [[JourneyToTheWest Sun Wukong]] does when released from his imprisonment is beat a tiger to death and fashion a kilt out of his skin. Before that, he beat up the entire army of the Celestial Court. The ''really'' powerful beings that finally subdued him weren't in the mood to interfere until personally insulted or their [=IOUs=] were tapped.
* In [[ClassicalMythology Greek Mythology]], Ares is recognized as the god of war and embodiment of physical power, but tends to lose or get humiliated in nearly every story about him. He gets trapped and humiliated by Hephaestus when Ares and Aphrodite (Hephaestus' consort) are caught in an illicit love affair, fled from the monster Typhon, lost a boxing match to Apollo, wounded by the hero [[Literature/TheIliad Diomedes]] with the aid of Athena forcing him to flee the battle, defeated by Hercules twice and stripped of his armor in one instance, locked in a bronze jar by the Aloadae requiring Hermes to free him, and defeated in battle with [[GeniusBruiser Athena]] by a rock to the head. Athena had a habit of humiliating him and Zeus generally said he was worthless. His humiliations are usually attributed to the Greeks preferring the more intellectual Athena and Ares being hated for embodying the chaotic and destructive nature of warfare. Oh, and Nike (Victory) usually sided against him. (In fact, the only gods who liked him were probably Eris, Aphrodite, and maybe Hades, seeing as deaths caused by war gave him more subjects.)
* Aphrodite was the goddess of beauty and love, and the most beautiful goddess of them all, yet a lot of really beautiful women or semi-goddesses were frequently compared to her and proclaimed to either equal to her or even surpass her. For instance, there is Psyche who charmed Eros, Aphrodite's son, or Helena, Zeus's illegitimate daughter, whose beauty contributed to enhance, if not cause, the Trojan war.
* Indra from HinduMythology started off as the supreme god, lord of heaven, and ultimate warrior. He rose to power by saving the world from an endless drought through slaying the demon snake Vrtra after breaking through the demons 99 fortresses with his Vajra or thunderbolt. Nowadays it's hard to find a story where he does not lose his throne, is completely ineffective in battle, or in some way humiliated. Even his one claim to fame has been retold with either Vishnu having to save him and practically handing him his victory.
* In RussianMythologyAndTales, the Firebird is a magical creature that is supposedly nigh-impossible to catch. Some stories about hunting the Firebird do portray the hunt as just such an impressive quest, but almost as often the hero catches the avian almost as an afterthought.
* This happens in virtually every text in Arthurian Legend. Every time a new knight is introduced, they prove how great he is by having him defeat a line-up of more established knights. Gawain gets this a lot, as does Percival.
* Nearly every Robin Hood Child Ballad is a variation on the plot of a stranger defeating Robin in combat and thus earning his respect and being invited to join his merry band of outlaws. Read or listened to all at once, they become one long catalog of failure, with the great Hood getting his ass handed to him over and over and over. He even loses to Maid Marian.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* WWE has always had a "Big Man Who Loses" for new people to demonstrate their ability over. In the 80s, they used jobbers Dave Barbie and Rusty Brooks. In more recent years Wrestling/{{Kane}} has played this role. Sometimes Kane gets pushed and Wrestling/TheBigShow or Wrestling/MarkHenry fills in for him.
* Wrestling/TheUndertaker is often the victim of this (as opposed to more conventional jobbing), which causes most viewers who have been watching ''[[Wrestling/{{WWESmackDown}} WWE [=SmackDown!=]]]'' for more than a few months to conclude that Wrestling/MichaelCole has a very short memory.
** The Undertaker is so good in this role, he doesn't even have to get beat to prove the new guy is credible. From Wrestling/{{Yokozuna}} to [[Wrestling/StoneColdSteveAustin "Stone Cold" Steve Austin]] to Wrestling/JeffHardy, the easy way to establish a WWE wrestler as a legit main-eventer has been to have him stare into the Dead Man's eyes and refuse to flinch. (And when [[Wrestling/MickFoley Mankind]] proved himself Taker's equal in psychological warfare, it made him an instant star.)
* [[Wrestling/HacksawJimDuggan "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan]] practically made a career out of setting up the Big Invincible Monster for Wrestling/HulkHogan.
* When Wrestling/BrockLesnar debuted, within a week he was throwing the 350lb Rikishi around like a ragdoll. Within a month he was doing the same to the near-400lb Wrestling/MarkHenry. Within a year he was throwing the 500lb Big Show around with suplexes.
** Lesnar also got to Worf Effect ''for'' The Big Show. Show went from being the Big Man Who Loses to the man who broke Lesnar's -- the man who slaughtered ''Hulk Hogan'' -- winning streak (with a little outside interference) overnight. That was partly because the tag line for the angle was "don't wake the sleeping giant" - a particularly unconvincing version of WorfHadTheFlu.
* Speaking of Mark Henry, that may actually be the ''best'' pro-wrestling example of this trope. Henry's been with the company for longer than anybody but [[Wrestling/{{DGenerationX}} DX]], Kane, and The Undertaker, yet has been in the 'monster jobber' role for a long time even while being simultaneously pushed as legitimately the world's strongest man. In 2008 he even got his hands on the ECW Championship, and still lost a greater number of matches than any single person on that brand. Then in 2009, they suddenly bring him over to the A-show Raw, switch him to a good-guy role and have him cleanly pin the then-WWE-Champion Wrestling/RandyOrton...[[RedemptionDemotion only to quickly drop him back down to the losing end of over half of his matches]], even while he's a supposed "powerhouse" and the fans couldn't be cheering for him more.
** Henry might have finally become an aversion. Since the Draft this year, he has been tear-assing through Smackdown, booked like the Juggernaut, culminating in his dethroning the aforementioned Randy Orton for the World Heavyweight Title at Night of Champions. The promos have made heavy mention that it's his first title reign in his 15 year (on and off) WWE career, so we may get a decent run with Henry as champ.
* When Kane debuted, WWF had several wrestlers Worf Effect for him, most notably Ahmed Johnson and Wrestling/{{Vader}}. Using Vader for this was very controversial at the time, as Vader had built up ''years'' of [[WrestlingMonster monster]] credibility, and a lot of fans just plain didn't buy Vader being dominated in the ring at all.
* In a very unusual setup, WCW had Wrestling/{{Goldberg}} and Meng Worf Effect for each other. Wrestling/{{Meng}} (Haku in [=WWF/E=])would batter Goldberg all over the ring for roughly three quarters of the match, when Goldberg usually tossed opponents around effortlessly. Then at the point where Meng would usually apply the Tongan Death Grip and win the match, Goldberg would rally back, spear, jackhammer, pinfall. The two of them had surprisingly good chemistry in the ring together, and despite Goldberg winning every single battle between them, the fights were popular enough that Little Caesars [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xypaN3Fvuz0 shot a commercial]] with Goldberg and Meng [[SoBadItsGood putting aside their differences over a pizza]].
* Going into 2010, Wrestling/BethPhoenix had been de-emphasized as the dominant monster heel due to her angle with "Santina" Marella as well as losing cleanly to other divas on the roster. In order to elevate her to the top of the women's division, WWE had two Worf Effect moments for her:
** She entered the Royal Rumble and eliminated the Great Khali.
** Delivered an almighty Glam Slam to the Women's Champion [[Wrestling/{{LayCool}} Michelle McCool]] and became the first person to pin her cleanly in over five months. To this day Michelle still hasn't beaten Beth cleanly.
* It's a pretty standard formula for starting up a feud over the title. The champion is in a tag team match (sometimes it's a singles match) and the wrestler they want to push will get a surprise win with the champion taking the pin. Usually another tag match will follow with the same thing happening again. Next there will be some kind of #1 contender's match and the wrestler will get his/her official title shot (sometimes they don't even use a #1 contender's match if the wrestler beats the champion in a non-title singles match). However it can go either way whether or not the wrestler actually wins the title.
* This is a very common way of establishing a new star in wrestling. Have him or her beat an older wrestler that fans know is tough. It doesn't always work, and it can [[XPacHeat backfire]] if fans are unwilling to accept the new wrestler as an equal of the older one.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Roleplay]]
''Roleplay/YuGiOhEastAcademy'': Skull Knight seems to have been introduced solely for Sigmund to get his official BadAss license.
** Marcus has been subjected to this no less than ''three'' times, being curbstomped by Peter, Yikzhekel and Haine.
** And Denero gets his ass handed to him by [[spoiler: David]] in the latters first duel in the show.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Sports]]
* In combat sports such as boxing and MixedMartialArts, contenders on the rise are often matched up with "gatekeepers," who are reasonably tough veterans of the sport who will not be challenging for the title any time soon. Defeating a gatekeeper gives fighters experience and raises their stock in the public's eye.
** This works even better - and is even truer to trope - when an aging former champion is used as a gatekeeper. The public recognizes the former champion, but doesn't know he's less capable than he used to be, so when the young gun mops the floor with him they easily believe he's championship material as well.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* Used regularly in ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' fluff and books. If the faction's not on the [[{{Sourcebook}} Codex]] cover, you'd better believe they'll be getting their asses kicked by whoever is[[hottip:note:With the odd exception of the 5th edition Tyranid codex, which was mostly about Hive Fleet defeats, including that time the Phoenix Lord Maugan Ra took out a whole swarm by himself]]. This can naturally lead to problems when the development cycle leaves factions OutOfFocus for years to accumulate a long string of defeats, with no victories to counteract them.
** Daemon Lord M'kar is a case that [[DependingOnTheWriter Depends on the Writer]]. Sometimes he's a terrifying threat, or when written by the [[ScapegoatCreator infamous]] Matt Ward he exists to show up and get pantsed by the latest new special character needing some badass cred.
** The most consistently Worfed thing in ''40k'' has to be the the Avatar of Khaine, the physical representation of the Eldar's god of war. To date the Avatar has been killed by two different Primarchs, a Greater Daemon of Slaanesh (via [[DemonicPossession possession]], [[FridgeLogic somehow]]), Marneus Calgar of the Ultramarines, the Blood Angels' Sanguinor, twelve bum-rushing Tyranid Carnifexes, the Blood Ravens ''four times'' over the ''VideoGame/DawnOfWar'' games, and Maugan Ra, ''an Eldar''.
** Materials can be Worfs too: [[MadeOfIndestructium Adamantium]] is only ever mentioned in terms of how a given weapon can effortlessly slice through, while Terminator armor has a similar tendency to get ripped apart to show how dangerous a threat is.
** An odd example is Ollanius Pius, who dates back to the oldest fluff. This [[PunyEarthlings mere human Guardsman]] intervened during the GodEmperor's duel against his [[FallenHero fallen]] [[ParentalFavoritism son]] [[TheParagonAlwaysRebels Horus]], and though slain effortlessly, Pius' death showed the Emperor that his son was past redemption, inspiring him to defeat Horus once and for all. Later {{retcon}}s tried to be true to this trope, and turned Pius from a human to a SpaceMarine [[ElitesAreMoreGlamorous Terminator]] to a [[PraetorianGuard Custodian Guard]], but this is arguably missing the point: Pius' death was meaningful ''because'' he was no threat to Horus, yet [[HeroicSacrifice he acted anyway]] and was [[ForTheEvulz killed for it]]. As of the HorusHeresy books, Pius is back to being a Guardsman, albeit an immortal warrior and peer of the Emperor instead of a normal human, perhaps as a weird compromise.
** The AmazonBrigade Sisters of Battle have done this so often, some fans have accused Matt Ward of misogyny.
* In the ''{{Ravenloft}}'' product line, a remarkable number of adventures require the {{player character}}s to rescue Dr. Rudolph van Richten when he's kidnapped, mind-controlled, committed to an asylum, or otherwise incapacitated...so much so, it mars his reputation as a shrewd and competent monster-hunter, to have gotten himself captured so many times. Probably a side effect of his being the most prominent non-evil {{NPC}} in the game setting, whom writers can't resist using in their scenarios, yet must hamstring to ensure he won't outshine the players' characters. This actually gets explained in ''Van Richten's guide to the Vistani''. He's under a [[GypsyCurse Vistani curse]] that compels him to go into dangerous situations and fail horribly in ways that get all his friends killed, but allows him to survive.
* The eponymous ''{{Champions}}'' were shown lying beaten alarmingly often for the world's premier heroes in the game's 4th edition, in the interests of making whichever villain they were trying to promote look nastier. Nowadays the art usually shows the heroes putting up a fight rather than just having lost one.
* ''Franchise/YuGiOh'' has the Monarchs. Any time they appear on a card, it's them [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Prideful_Roar getting their asses]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Intercept kicked or about]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Inverse_Universe to get their]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Screen_of_Red asses kicked.]] This may be something of a backlash against their former GameBreaker status.
* This is actively subverted in White Wolf's ''WerewolfTheForsaken''. The Rahu Auspice are the designated tough guy in any pack. What inborn ability do they gain for being Rahu? The ability to tell at a glance whether or not they could take a given opponent in a fight.
* In ''MagicTheGathering'', a variation occurs, because of the {{metagame}}: If a card turns out to be a GameBreaker, there will be instant answers to it next set, though (as per the rules) there are always answers to everything. Storyline-wise, Lin Sivvi was a GameBreaker in the Masques block; she died at the very beginning of the Invasion block.
* ''{{Exalted}}'': the Bull of the North is recommended for this in Compass: North, while Return of the Scarlet Empress sets up [[spoiler:as much of the Fivescore Fellowship as the Storyteller wishes to take out]], and especially Chejop Kejak.
* The [[http://www.rpgnow.com/product_info.php?products_id=3481&it=1 first book]] in the Immortal Handbook series (an UpToEleven modification of DungeonsAndDragons) shows two monsters battling on the cover. If you look, you can see the ''Tarrasque'' cowering on the background.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* ''VisualNovel/FateStayNight''
** Happens especially on Servant Berserker. His Master makes no secret of his true identity as Hercules. He's called ''The Strongest Servant'', he's top-tier in all the main factors that determine a Servant's strength (age, fame, and mana stores of his Master), with his Class enhancing his already insane power, attacks below 'A'-rank barely scratch him, and [[spoiler:he revives 12 times before he can be KilledOffForReal]]. You'd think he's a shoe-in to win [[ThereCanBeOnlyOne the Grail War]]. However, he is always eliminated half-way through any scenario, all to show how impressive some other character is or has become. Taking from a modified text above...''"If those things took down Berserker in less than two minutes, what chance do we have?"'' [[MemeticMutation Isn't it sad,]] [[GratuitousEnglish Bahsahkah?]] To be completely fair, in the Fate arc, [[spoiler:he took out Archer and nearly killed Shirou and Rin]] and he went out in a blaze of glory in Unlimited Blade Works [[spoiler:tanking Gate of Babylon after Gate of Babylon to shield Ilya]] cementing how badass he actually is.
** Although he's Hercules, having him become the Berserker Class may not have been Ilya's brightest decision - while it beefs him up in stats, the fact that Hercules already ''has'' the greatest physical statistics of any legendary hero makes these boosts minimal compared to most Servants who agree to be compatible with the Berserker class (most are ''considerably'' weaker fighters who gain a ''much'' bigger stat boost). Trading in your strategic and tactical fighting skills (and possibly a Noble Phantasm or two) in for almost worthless stat gains doesn't exactly make for the most balanced fighter in the conflict.
** The true master of this trope is ''Lancer''; he is established early on as being a {{Badass}} while fighting Archer and almost kills Shiro and delivers a badass one-liner immediately following, but it's all downhill from there. In the Fate route he is [[spoiler:killed by Gilagmesh to establish how powerful he is]]. In Unlimited Blade Works he is [[spoiler: forced to kill himself by Kotomine ordering him to do so with a Command Spell]], though he does have his [[SugarWiki/MomentofAwesome chance to shine]] immediately following this. Finally in Heaven's Feel he [[spoiler: dies to establish True Assasin's cred.]] Although, his death in ''Heaven's Feel'' is because [[spoiler:Dark Sakura cornered him, meaning he would've died by either True Assassin or Dark Sakura. If Dark Sakura weren't there, True Assassin would've been gone as fast as he arrived.]]
*** That said, failing to actually kill Shiro, who had next to no fighting and magical ability at the time, shows how terrible Lancer is to begin with, despite Shiro escaping the fight by summoning Saber.
*** His Gag in the SpinOff CarnivalPhantasm is essentially The Worf Effect taken UpToEleven to ButtMonkey proportions.
** Ultimate Example: [[spoiler: Dark Sakura]] kills [[spoiler: motherfucking GILGAMESH, the strongest guy in the whole series up to that point]], while seriously wounded, confused, and scared. [[spoiler:Then EATS him, taking his power.]]
** Even ''Gilgamesh'' suffered from this. At the end of UBW, he and [[spoiler: Shirou]] have an epic fight [[spoiler: in Shirou's newly discovered Reality Marble]] and he loses. Admittedly he wasn't really trying(i.e. wasn't [[GameBreaker using]] [[OneHitKO Ea]] or wearing armor or taking advantage of his Gate of Babylon nearly as much as he should have been) until it was too late, but as a Warrior-King of Sumer, you'd think he wouldn't be outfought with ''swords'' by a guy who specializes in ''archery''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* As [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/09/18/episode-895-the-punching-bag/ this strip]] explains, Black Mage of ''Webcomic/EightBitTheater'' functions as both the Worf and the ButtMonkey. Probably from how he almost always uses [[KamehameHadoken one spell]], that while powerful, can only be used once a day.
* In ''Webcomic/GrrlPower'', Concretia makes [[http://www.grrlpowercomic.com/archives/1303/ an entrance]], complete with stats, an immediately blows away Mr. Amorphous and Achillies to show how [[BadAss bad arsed]] she is. Then in [[http://www.grrlpowercomic.com/archives/1304/ the very next page]] she is taken down by Math to show just how [[BadAssNormal bad-arsed normal]] he is.
* In ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'', Bun-Bun found himself used like this during "Dangerous Days Ahead". Getting his butt kicked by the monstrous CEO form of [[spoiler:clone!]]Aylee was a major plot point because in the past, Aylee was not strong enough to win a fight with him.
** Their first battle ended in a draw as they both collapsed from exhaustion, although Bun-Bun managed to slice off Aylee's arm before the end (it regenerated). [[spoiler:The fact that "Aylee" was a clone whose evolution was controlled to make her stronger helps]].
** Oasis sometimes falls victim to this, as while she is a deadly assassin, she also loses against [[spoiler:Clone!]]Aylee, and previously lost to [[SuperPoweredEvilSide demon-possessed Gwynn]].
*** Finally, in June 2009 Bun-Bun and Oasis faced each other in a full-out fight. Who would be the Worf this time? [[spoiler:Bun-Bun. It was likely decided by the fact that the storyline at the time was all about Oasis and it would have been cut anticlimactically short if she'd been the one to lose. Bun-bun had taken the advantage when it was solely about conventional means of fighting, but when Oasis' pyrokinetic powers are shown, the fight goes the other way]].
* In one of the prequel books of ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'', the Order is about to face a guard monster, only to have it hit Roy with a roll of 2. Upon realizing that it can nail the party member with the probable highest Armor Class with such a low roll, they flee.
** Explicitly lampshaded in [[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0736.html this strip]].
* Sara and the other Time Monks from ''Webcomic/ErrantStory''. The author directly invokes the trope in a [[http://www.errantstory.com/2009-04-29/4173 commentary comic]].
** Sara's jobbing seems restricted to magic-using enemies. For example, she gets caught by an unexpected bind spell, but once Meji frees her she takes down three elves in a handful of seconds.
* In ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'', [[NobleBigot Equius]], the strongest of the trolls, (he ''[[TestosteronePoisoning punched the head off an ogre with his bare hands!]]'') is [[spoiler: easily strangled to death by [[MonsterClown Gamzee]] as his first victim]]. This is arguably both a [[PlayedStraight straight play]] and a subversion, since WordOfGod says [[spoiler: he could have easily broken the bowstring with his STRONG neck, but didn't because [[FantasticRacism Gamzee is a highblood]] and therefore had the right to kill him]], [[CombatSadomasochist at least in Equius' mind]].
** [[DemotedToExtra Hegemonic]] [[TheBrute Brute.]] Biggest, toughest, meanest of the Derse agents, save Jack once he gets the ring. His [[AlternateUniverse Midnight Crew counterpart]] Hearts Boxcars devours the heads of his enemies whole and rips huge safes out of brick walls. Yet in the first iteration of the kids' game he's slain off-screen by the [[BewareTheNiceOnes relatively harmless-looking and meek Parcel Mistress]] (using the sword his boss gave her, no less), and in the post-[[ResetButton Scratch]] session decapitated in one sweep by Dirk Strider with only three panels worth of screen time.
* Generally, the first action of a villain during the Yearly ''BobAndGeorge'' Villain Kills Everyone storyline is to take out Protoman, who could be loosely described as a sort of robot Franchise/{{Batman}}.
* Elliot from ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'' suffers from this, even though the series isn't focused on combat. He built a reputation as a BullyHunter and befriended two of the main characters through saving them from bullies and defeated the first antagonist of the strip. He then lost to [[spoiler:Grace's brother Hedge]], and embarrassingly so having been knocked out after one blow[[note]]and the exhaustion from one involuntary transformation that may have been precipitated by that blow[[/note]].
* Subverted in ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'' where a Dreen is described as powerful and scary by Jagermonsters, [[http://www.girlgeniusonline.com/comic.php?date=20121029 immediately before being squashed]] by a mecha of [[spoiler: the Knights of Jove]]. Except in the [[http://www.girlgeniusonline.com/comic.php?date=20121031 next panel]] the Dreen is entirely unharmed and explodes the mecha.
** The Jagermonsters themselves tend to suffer from this a lot. They're a ProudWarriorRace whose three favorite pastimes are [[BoisterousBruiser fighting enemies, fighting friends, and fighting each other,]] but they have a tendency in the series to encounter menaces that can lay them low, sometimes without even noticing them.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Original]]
* Every MemeticBadass is able mop the floor with God. Or, at least, engage in some sort of contest wherein the winner would be impossible to determine. (Or could not engage in the contest at all except as a form of solitaire.)
* This would apply to the way Tex dominates Maine, Wyoming, and York in season 9, episode 10 of ''Machinima/RedVsBlue'' were it not for the fact that we're already well aware of Tex's badassery. To the other Freelancers, however, this is exactly what's going on. The show does a good job of averting this for the most part, however. Those that are skilled all appear completely competent even next to the absolute badasses, but the most badass of them still show clear superiority.
* This particular effect happens to Yellow in ''SuperMarioBrosZ''. Supposedly the toughest of the [[PowerRangers Axem Rangers X]], not only does he get his first strike turned into a dud, he's also the first one of the group to be killed off when [[BigBad Mecha Sonic]] comes calling, followed quickly by the other four. Also, this effect happens earlier with the [[Franchise/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles Koopa Bros]]. A couple episodes earlier, their [[GreenRocks Chaos Emerald]] fueled special attack decimated the heroes. Mecha Sonic blew through them like they were wet rice paper.
* In the second season of ''Series/LegionOfExtraordinaryDancers'', they introduce Organization X, a group of Evil Counterparts to the heroes set up as the main antagonists. When episode 16 rolls around, they haven't actually gotten a chance to show off their skills in a fight just yet (Except for Fangz, who isn't actually in the episode). Episode 16 has them facing off against The Umbras, a group of identically dressed Mooks working for the Dark Doctor who are only introduced a minute or two before OX shows up, just enough to show that they're actually pretty good. It's a perfect set-up for this trope, [[spoiler: [[SubvertedTrope but The Umbras end up wiping the floor with them]]]].
* In the ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYxu_MQSTTY David Blaine Street Magic]]'' parody videos, David Blaine starts out as a RealityWarper who keeps playing tricks on two L.A. idiots. Then, in the fourth video, [[CreatorsPet Zaoza]] appears.
* ''Literature/{{Worm}}'':
** On her very first night out in action, the protagonist plays a critical role in defeating supervillain and gang warlord Lung, who usually can take on many heroes by himself. To make things better or worse, we later learn that Lung once dueled and drove off a HeroKiller {{Kaiju}}, a feat that normally needs the local PhysicalGod's attention.
** Dauntless is a superhero who is able to imbue items with power. InUniverse, it is speculated that he will one day be able to surpass [[WorldsStrongestMan the Triumvirate]]. So naturally he is TooPowerfulToLive and [[spoiler:bites it fighting Leviathan.]]
** The Interludes for arc 11 have the various members of the Slaughterhouse Nine kicking around both heroes and other villains, showing just why they're so feared.
** [[spoiler:The protagonist herself]] plays Worf's role for the supervillain Contessa in [[http://parahumans.wordpress.com/2013/06/11/crushed-24-2/ Chapter 24.2]].
* ''Series/{{Noob}}''
** Want to show how difficult the new bosses in ''Horizon 1.1'' are ? Have one of them beat [[TheAce Fantöm's]] team.
** Ystos, the healer from Fantöm's team, worked as that for a radom Order player who quickly turned out to be [[LivingLegend Spectre]] (who hadn't even unlocked his new character's prestige class yet).
[[/folder]]

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