* CrossesTheLineTwice: If it were a simple death, then these people would be tragedies. Because they are complicated and/or stupid deaths, they are black comedies.
* DontTryThisAtHome: If everyone else went jumping off a cliff, would you go, too?
* DudeNotFunny: Naturally, everyone's black comedy threshold can vary and so there are people who will see these deaths as tragic.
* HilariousInHindsight: The story about the man who lost his reproductive capacity due to an attempt to shag a porcupine is much funnier to those who've read the ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' series and are familiar with a certain song from it, first printed before the Darwin Award story. ''The hedgehog can never be buggered at all.''
* SignatureScene: The famous JATO story (about a guy who supposedly strapped a jet engine to his car, with predictable results), which is without a doubt the most famous Darwin Award of all time. Even after it was proven to be an urban myth, it's still beloved and the JATO guy is considered by some to be an unofficial mascot for the Awards.