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[[quoteright:350:[[ComicBook/TheBatmanAdventures http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/JustShoot.JPG]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:[[WesternAnimation/BatmanTheBraveAndTheBold Where's the fun]] [[VillainSong in that?]]]]

->''That's one thing I like about the bad guys - there's always a lot of discussion before they get round to pulling the trigger.''
-->--'''Ullman''', ''VideoGame/{{Metro 2033}}''

Villains frequently find themselves in conundrums that could easily be solved by [[MundaneSolution finding the right person and shooting them]] but refrain from doing so.

There may or may not be some in-story justification for this failure to take the direct approach. The {{Doylist}} explanation will always boil down to the fact that if he ''did'' just shoot him, then the story would be much shorter and would end with the bad guys winning.

{{Subtrope}}s include:
* BondVillainStupidity: The villain has the opportunity to kill the good guy, but leaves them alive anyway, sometimes for no adequately explained reason.
* ComplexityAddiction: The villain ''does'' try to kill the hero, but employs some ridiculously elaborate (and thus easily-foiled) method, rather than just shooting them.
* EvilGloating: Even when the villain intends to kill the hero in a straightforward fashion, they still feel the need to gloat about it immediately beforehand, thus giving the hero time to escape or fight back.
* StatingTheSimpleSolution: Someone in the story [[LampshadeHanging points out]] that the above three options are stupid and that a simpler, more direct solution exists. The villain may or may not take their advice.

Compare ThirdActStupidity, ContractualGenreBlindness. Contrast DangerouslyGenreSavvy, CombatPragmatist, and NoNonsenseNemesis.

If you, the viewer, are wondering why someone won't just shoot someone else, {{Headscratchers}} is the place to ask.