'''Basic Trope''': The villain unwittingly gives the hero an advantage.
* '''Straight''': Emperor Evulz kidnaps and holds [[TheHero Bob]]'s sister Alice for ransom. Turns out Alice was planning to kill her brother and join Evulz, but she can't very well do that now that she's in captivity, and this gives Bob the opportunity to figure out her plan. Now Bob realizes that his sister is a villain and Evulz's mistreatment of Alice means that there's no way she would help him even if he did let her.
* '''Exaggerated''': Emperor Evulz turns on a light-switch. [[ForWantOfANail Doing so causes a chain reaction]] that eventually leads to a power outage. This cuts power to his base's [[ForceFieldDoor energy barriers]], allowing Bob (who was held prisoner) to escape and basically get free access to ''all'' of Evulz's base.
* '''Downplayed''': Evulz holds Alice for ransom. Alice was a GuileHero who was trying to get close to Evulz to figure out his secrets, but she had no way to enter his base.
** Alice [[VillainWithGoodPublicity was able to hide her villainy]] from even her close friends and family. How was Evulz, who has no personal connection to Bob, supposed to know what she was up to?
** Evulz actually ''wants'' to help Bob so that Bob can defeat [[EvilVersusOblivion another villain who wants to destroy everything, unlike Evulz who only wishes to rule]]. However, since Bob [[HeroWithBadPublicity is currently known as Public Enemy #1]], Evulz openly helping him would be a PR disaster. So he kidnaps Alice, supposedly to cause Bob to capitulate but really because he knows her plan to kill Bob would doom the world to destruction at the hands of an OmnicidalManiac.
* '''Inverted''': NiceJobBreakingItHero
* '''Subverted''': Evulz at first seems like he's going to kidnap Alice, who's secretly plotting against Bob, but then changes his mind and kidnaps Bob's loyal sister, Carly.
* '''Double Subverted''': However, Carly was [[UnwittingPawn unwittingly instrumental]] in Alice's plan to kill Bob. Her kidnapping throws the plot completely out of whack, and Bob's efforts to get Carly back eventually lead him to realize Alice's villainy.
* '''Parodied''': ''Everything'' [[HarmlessVillain Evulz]] does gives Bob an advantage. He kidnaps Alice? Turns out she was a ''much'' more competent villain than he and was about to kill Bob before he intervened. Attack Bob's base? Turns out several other villains had captured it, and Bob is easily able to get it back after the Evulz-caused EnemyCivilWar. Turn on a light switch? The power drain turns out to be ''just enough'' that his DoomsdayDevice doesn't get off the ground.
* '''Zig Zagged''': Whether Evulz accidentally helps Bob [[DependingOnTheWriter Depends On The Writer]].
* '''Averted''': Evulz kidnaps Alice. She had no plans against her brother, but they weren't close and even after escaping she doesn't want to get involved in the conflict.
* '''Enforced''': "Oh, ''[[PrecisionFStrike shit]]''... Evulz is gonna win at this rate, and it's too late to change it! Oh, I know! Let's have one of his actions accidentally help Bob!"
** "Nice job helping Bob, Evulz!"
** "You know, I really thought that would end with you dying horribly and me not feeling like a complete idiot..."
* '''Invoked''': Evulz wants to end his career as a villain, so he starts "accidentally" aiding Bob so that Bob can 'defeat' him and let him retire.
* '''Exploited''': Evulz plans to kidnap Bob's sister Carly. Dan, TheStarscream, realizes that while Carly is firmly on Bob's side, Bob's other sister Alice ''isn't'' and kidnapping her would actually ''help'' Bob. He uses his role as [[TreacherousAdvisor Evulz's advisor]] to nudge Evulz into kidnapping Alice instead, and using Bob to help depose Evulz.
* '''Defied''': Evulz makes sure he knows ''everything'' about Alice before he goes ahead with his plan to kidnap her. When he realizes she's plotting against Bob, he instead offers to help her.
* '''Discussed''': "Are you ''sure'' kidnapping Alice is a good idea?" "You know, now that you mention it, she does seem to have a history with Bob. Oh well, I'll go ahead with it anyway. Maybe I can convince her to join my side if she ''does'' hate Bob."
* '''Conversed''': "Did Evulz just ''kidnap'' Alice? But... what about that plan to kill Bob she'd been prepping for the last season and a half?"
* '''Implied''': Alice and Bob have a very rocky relationship. After Evulz kidnaps Alice, Bob suddenly starts succeeding more often, and doesn't seem all that inclined to help Alice.
* '''Conversed''': ???
* '''Deconstructed''': Evulz becomes rather paranoid about how much he does that helps the heroes. Soon enough he goes on a rampage that ignores both his main objective and kills many people on all sides.
* '''Reconstructed''': Before breaking down, Evulz starts to think, and realizes that the heroes do this for him as well. Soon enough he has an ever better plot that uses the heroes to his advantage.
* '''Played For Laughs''': Evulz kills all of Bob's allies, and is about to finish him off when he steps on a twig. This somehow revives everyone, including Bob's long dead missing parents and pet dog.
* '''Played For Drama''': ???
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