Big Brother Bully

Older siblings as bullies towards their younger siblings as well as others.

Related tropes: Kids Are Cruel, Teens Are Monsters (because the big brother/sister is often a teenager as compared to the younger more sympathetic protagonist).

Compare Aloof Big Brother, Sibling Rivalry. Contrast Big Brother Instinct; oftens mixes with it in the "The only one allowed to bully my little brother is me!" sense.

Unfortunately, very Truth in Television ... and sometimes even a big sister.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Card Captor Sakura: Touya Kinomoto is both this and an overprotective older brother.
  • Played for Laughs in Futari Ecchi, where male lead Makoto's older brother Akira keeps butting into his and Yura's sex life whether Makoto wants it or not.
  • Bokurano and Kodomo no Omocha play it for drama, as both Jun Ushiro and Natsumi Hayama abuse their siblings Kana and Akito because each one blames their kid sibs for their moms falling victim to Death by Childbirth. And in Jun's case, Mrs. Ushiro wasn't even his mom, as he grew up believing that she was his birth mother but she only was his aunt or the wife of his birth mom's teacher (depending on whether you're watching the anime or reading the manga).
  • Raditz from Dragon Ball Z so very, very much. Upon finding his younger brother Kakarot he tries to force him to join the other Saiyans by kidnapping his son and then attempted to kill him when he refused. There's no love lost when Raditz is killed and Goku never thinks of him again.
  • Inverted with the Kongo Bros in Eyeshield 21; the younger twin tends to pick on the older one.
  • Ace from One Piece started out as this. When he first met his adoptive brother Luffy he spat at him. When Luffy followed him through the mountains he attempted to kill him several times and outright contemplated murder when Luffy learned of Sabo and his treasure stash. Eventually, he graduated to Aloof Big Brother and finally Big Brother Mentor by the time of the main story.
  • Maho from Wandering Son is also picking on her little brother Shuuichi. She also has a Big Sister Instinct though.
  • Durarara!!: Mairu and Kururi's more unusual... quirks probably stem from having one. Let's face, growing up with Izaya as an older brother can't be easy.
  • Gender Inverted by every big sister in Daily Lives of High School Boys. The only big brother in the series is just Not So Different to the main characters.
  • From Nichijou, we have Mio's older sister Yoshino. She loves playing pranks on just about everyone, but her little sister is her favorite victim.
  • Bakemonogatari: The protagonist, Koyomi Araragi, is this towards his sisters.
  • YuYu Hakusho: Kazuma Kuwabara's older sister Shizuru. While she's sometimes abusive towards her brother, she also has a Big Sister Instinct.
  • InuYasha: Sesshoumaru was a bully to Inuyasha when Inuyasha was growing up, mainly due to Inuyasha's half-human heritage which youkai view as a stain on their family reputation and Sesshoumaru completely believing that he was The Unfavourite. Once the brothers learn their father's Infinity+1 Sword Sesshoumaru's spent years searching for is Inuyasha's, their Sibling Rivalry escalates into Cain and Abel territory. By the time the inheritance issue is resolved, Sesshoumaru has morphed into the Aloof Big Brother who never protects his brother, he just happens to be passing through whenever his brother is in trouble...

    Comic Books 
  • Sonic in Sonic the Comic is this to Tails, though they're not blood related. He's constantly calling him "Pixel Brain" and berating him, though it's shown he does care for him.
  • In the last arc of Runaways, Chase nearly becomes this towards Klara, because he resents the fact that she survived the accident that killed Old Lace. After realizing what he was turning into, he decides that he needs to get away from the others for a while.
  • Blue Devil had an evil older brother who sold the souls of his entire family in order to get power, and thus played a role in Blue Devil being transformed into a demon.
  • Etrigan was this to his brother Scapegoat.
  • The Spider-Man/Black Cat: The Evil That Men Do miniseries introduced a minor supervillain named Francis Klum, whose slide into evil began after his older brother started sexually abusing him and then forced him to use his low-level teleportation abilities to help create a criminal empire.
  • Speaking of Spider-Man, his old foe Kraven the Hunter was technically like this towards his younger half-brother Dmitri. (Who would grow up to be the Chameleon, his occasional partner in crime.) "Technically" because Dmitri didn't know they were brothers at the time, Dmitri only learning this from Kraven's son Alyosha decades later.

    Fan Fiction 
  • Gender-inverted in Divided Rainbow, with Pinkie Pie starting out as a verbally abusive older sister to young Apple Bloom, (It Makes Sense in Context.) She gets better, though.
  • In Frozen Hearts, some of Prince Hans' brothers fall into this. Harald beats up Hans when two of his best men get dismissed over how they treated him. Harken is eager to punish Hans with a whipping, even though people have died from his whippings before, largely as a means of saving face. Both of them were participants in the "pretend Hans is invisible" game that Hans referenced in the film.
  • Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja fanfic "Killer Chimps In Norrisville" introduced the OC Robert Warburton as brother to other OC Niall Warburton who also debuted in KCIN. Robert didn't appear in person though until "The Good, the Bad and the Randy" where he was established to be physically abusive and even tried to strangle Niall with a scarf or sock. Needless to say, Robert is very much hated by readers.

    Film - Live Action 
  • Inverted by the film Little Sweetheart. The younger sister blackmails and bullies her older brother with the information that he's sleeping with an older woman in secret.
  • E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial: Elliot's bro normally. He improves.
  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick, Rodrick, RODRICK.
  • Home Alone: Buzz McCallister. He had a tarantula.
    • In the first movie, everyone shows concern for Kevin being alone at home. Everyone, that is, except Buzz, who is entirely unsympathetic of him.
      Megan: You're not at all worried that something might happen to Kevin?
      Buzz: No, for three reasons: A, I'm not that lucky. Two, we use smoke detectors and D, we live on the most boring street in the whole United States of America, where nothing even remotely dangerous will ever happen. Period!
      • And yet at that time, Kevin is trying to defend himself and his house against two burglars.
  • Fanboys: Eric Bottler's older brother constantly belittling him and his friends for their love of Star Wars. In the end of the movie, he shows up while they're in line for The Phantom Menace and chases off two guys who were harshly criticizing Eric's new comicbook.
  • Sex Drive: with the big brother constantly giving his brother crap about his supposed sexuality (or lack thereof). On the other hand, the brother does give him a ride to work in his Pontiac Judge and helps him out in the end.
  • Weird Science: Wyatt's Jerk Jock older brother Chet.
  • Pino to Vito in Do the Right Thing.
  • Michael Wormwood in the film version of Matilda. He acts very similar to their parents towards his younger sister Matilda, throwing food at her and calling her names when they're alone.
  • Little Nicky: both of Nicky's older brothers have spent most of their lives picking on him, from hitting him with a shovel (giving him a speech impediment) to psychically forcing him to crotch-punch himself. Their father steps in when this goes too far:
    Dad: Cassius, didn't I tell you to stay out of your brother's mind?
    Cassius: I forgot.
    Dad: Maybe this will help you remember. (Cassius punches himself so hard he goes flying)
  • Victor Creed, once he's required to fight Logan in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

  • A Brother's Price starts with Corelle bullying Jerin. Later, there is a moment where he mentions that it's the first time in some weeks that he felt love for Corelle. He gets along better with his eldest sister, though - it's a big family.
  • The Adventures of Tom Sawyer starts off with the suggestion of this, when Tom scraps with the local dandified boy; each boy swears he'll get his big brother to beat up the taunter, with Twain adding that both big brothers were imaginary.
  • Enderís Game: Peter to Ender and Valentine.
  • Harry Potter's cousin/adopted brother Dudley Dursley. He improves, though.
    • The Weasley twins, while not as thuggish or mean-spirited as Dudley, could be hard to live with for Ron. They turned his teddy bear into a spider, used one of his pets as a bludger, nearly had him make an Unbreakable Vow, and didn't do much to help his Performance Anxiety on the Quidditch team.
    Hermione: I think Ron might do better without Fred and George around. They never exactly gave him a lot of confidence...
  • A Song of Ice and Fire has many examples.
    • Gregor Clegane, towards Sandor and their unnamed baby sister. He kills the little girl and almost does the same to the little boy, leaving him badly scarred.
    • Viserys Targaryen is this towards his younger sister Daenerys. For 14 years he did the best he could before bitterness, paranoia, and possibly genetic madness turned him into what he was. Dany thought well enough of him to name one of her dragons, albeit the smallest one, after him after all.
    • Also, Joffrey Baratheon to his brother Tommen.
    • Theon Greyjoy's memory of his brothers Rodrik and Maron are cheifly of "Rodrik's drucken cuff and Maron's cruel japes. It seems to run in the Greyjoy family. Theon's uncle Aeron still has nightmares about his older brother Euron Crow's Eye. It's strongly implied Euron actually raped Aeron.
  • Edmund Pevensie is this to Lucy in the beginning of The Chronicles of Narnia, despite not being the oldest. In fact, Peter harshly calls him out on it when he pretends to side with her and then humiliates her.
  • Played for Drama in When She Was Good by Norma Fox Mazer. Em's older sister Pamela brutally abuses her, physically and emotionally. In fact, she is suspected by psychologists to have some sort of mental illness. Em and Pamela end up moving out, and Em works while Pamela stays at home and forces her to have a very strict routine, cooking for her and cleaning for her. The book deals with what happens after Pamela unexpectedly dies of a stroke.
  • In Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Rodrick. Just like in the movies, he's a complete Jerk Ass who just abuses Greg and his friends gets away with it. Greg has his moments and had intended to become this to Manny, but he's much less of a jerk than his brother and a couple times when he's done stuff to Manny it was usually good-natured. (Likely because he can't get away with a thing with Manny.)
  • Fisk claims that his older sister Judith in the Knight and Rogue Series was and perhaps still is one of these (he expresses a desire repeatedly for her to turn out to be the criminal they're tracking). While some of the past actions he claims sound rude at best, she does nothing worse than one-up him in arguments while present in the story.
  • Amelia Peabody got this from pretty much all her brothers, but especially her oldest brother James:
    "Dear Amelia. You haven't changed since you were a little girl. Do you remember the time..."
    There he stuck, probably because he couldn't recall any fond memories of our childhood. I certainly had none that included him.
  • Charlie Angelfield in The Thirteenth Tale intends to make a victim of his much younger sister. This doesn't work as planned, and they instead become more like partners in crime.
  • Corelle enjoys picking on and deriding her slightly younger brother Jerin in A Brother's Price. Frustrated, he wants to hit her but is afraid of her retaliation. As the book goes on and under the eye of Eldest, she becomes more protective of him and less hostile.
  • Aun in The Shamer Chronicles beats his younger half-sister, Rose.
  • Paddy Clarke in Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha is this in the first half of the novel, letting his friends pick on and bully his younger brother Francis, making him pop a capsule of lighter fluid in his mouth only to then light it on fire to make it seem as though he's breathing fire. Later in the book, as it becomes obvious that his parents are going to get divorced he and his brother become extremely close.
  • Patricia AKA "The Troll" in Patrick McManus's humorous stories of his childhood.
  • Kindling Ashes: Huw taunts Corran, deliberately injures him during sparring, and later tries to kill him for being a firesoul.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Ian and Paul Branagh to Robin in Young Dracula.
  • The Wonder Years: Kevin's big brother Wayne.
  • Malcolm in the Middle plays this quite well. The real oldest brother, Francis was implied to be this before being sent to military school; however he's more of a Big Brother Mentor during the series though he can still have moments that fall under this trope. The next eldest brother, Reese fills this role for Malcolm & Dewey for the majority of the series, although Malcolm gives as much as he he receives and joins in with bullying Dewey. Dewey, being the youngest for most the series, doesn't fall under this but gets a few The Dog Bites Back episodes; and after Jamie's born, complains that it's not fair that Reese & Malcolm got the Cool Big Bro Francis when they were kids, but Francis left for military school before Dewey form any memories of having a cool big brother {{Note: Dewey was actually six when Francis got sent to military school, so it's likely he was exaggerating.) - Francis then reveals that he treated Malcolm & Reese the same way they treat Dewey when he was younger.
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation: Robert Picard to Jean-Luc, as shown in "Family".
    • Also Lore to Data.
  • That '70s Show: Female example, with older sister Laurie being this to Eric. No wonder he and his friends call her "the witch".
  • Brad and Randy to Mark on Home Improvement, especially in the earlier episodes, when they were too young to really know better.
  • The eponymous character from Frasier has elements of this towards his little brother Niles. However, Niles is far from a poor helpless victim of his brother's torment, and can usually give as good as he gets.
  • Inverted in Drake & Josh in which their little sister Megan is very much the bully to her two older brothers, and she also is often able to make it look like they are bullying her by being a Bitch in Sheep's Clothing that her parents don't see past.
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Ward's older brother. It was his older brother's bullying of both Ward and his younger brother that convinced Ward to learn how to fight and made him the man he is today.
    • In season 2 we actually meet Grant Ward's older brother, Senator Christian Ward who claims that Grant tortured their little brother and blamed him for it. It's not clear whose story is more trustworthy, the HYDRA mole who fooled a lie detector, or the politician.
  • In the Supernatural episode "Heart" (S02, Ep17), Dean uses his status as the older sibling to bully his way into staying with an attractive woman.
  • In The Worst Year of My Life, Again, Alex's older sister Sam is a female example.

    Video Games 
  • In Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge, Guybrush Threepwood's creepy brother Chuckie is a tormentor. It's also the true identity of the villain LeChuck. Because the entire two games were just one big daydream by a young boy in an amusement park. This was thankfully retconned later.
  • Leon in Yggdra Union and its related games. In Blaze Union it's pretty clear that this is just a part of his tsundere nature, but it's Played for Drama in Yggdra Union, where his being a jerk to his little sister Elena and everyone else is representative of the fact that he recently took a dive off the deep end.
  • Female example: Beldam from Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door towards her little sister Vivian.
  • Another female example in Persona 3 and its assorted spinoffs: it's implied that Elizabeth, one of the Velvet Room attendants, harasses and pulls off cruel pranks on her younger brother Theodore, which include things such as force-feeding him dog food and soybean powder. Gets taken Up to Eleven in Persona Q, where their mutual older sister Margaret also treats him poorly, and their treatment of him dips into outright abuse at times.
  • In Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay Tony Mori Kibbutz plays this role towards his brother Brucie from the main game.

    Visual Novels 
  • In the first season of Cause of Death, constant abuse from his sister eventually causes Brian Resler—better known as Eric Mills—to snap, kill her, and ultimately become the Serial Killer known as the Maskmaker.

  • Mike to Angel in The Good Witch, but only in their original history; his memory of that has been erased. In the reality created after Angel is given the powers of the Good Witch, it's inverted into "Little Sister Bully" instead, since she's a sociopathic Reality Warper who loves to turn him into a girl for what is ostensibly "punishment" for his behavior in their old timeline, but is really for her own amusement.
  • Bro almost certainly is this to Dave in Homestuck. Subverted because Bro is actually his dad.
    • "uu"/Caliborn is this to "UU"/Calliope in the later acts; he takes it to the extreme, though, as later he sends someone to murder her. Double subverted because they're actually sharing a body, but still see each other as siblings.
  • Jeri Keene in PreTeena tries to be this with younger sister Teena, but her heart isn't really in it. Besides, Teena gives as good as she gets. Jeri does behave predictably abominably to Teena's best friend, the A Dork Able Stick, though.
  • Matilda's older brother Gordon is this in Step Monster, with Gordon being such a Jerk Ass that he actively visits his sister for the sole purpose of taunting her about how she's an overweight loser with no real friends or family who most recently had a job as a Closet Monster, which is the monster equivalent of being a Burger Fool, whilst he's a top executive in a prestigious company and has an exotic foreign wife.

     Web Original 
  • The Other Guy to The Nostalgia Critic. Of course this is only in-character, Rob and Doug play around but could easily be classed as Heterosexual Life-Partners.
  • Ares was this to his half-brother Apollo in Thalia's Musings.
  • In Homestar Runner, Strong Bad is very abusive and cruel to his younger brother, Strong Sad. To a lesser extent, so is the oldest of the brothers, Strong Mad, but he mostly just follows orders.
  • Some of the (as yet unfinished) "Tales" by the DeviantArt user verDerbt, in particular Aaron's Tale, have Aaron being severely bullied by his big brother Thomas, although Thomas is actually being manipulated by a psychopathic third party. Warning: Mature themes. The stories are not intended for children and although non-explicit, are definitely adult in nature and emotionally disturbing.

    Western Animation 
  • In The Simpsons, Bart is sometimes like this toward Lisa.
    • Although more often than not, Lisa is smart enough to outmatch Bart, and turn the table on him.
    • On the other hand Bart's physical abuse of Lisa is usually more harmless. When the two truly get physical, Lisa often overpowers him easily.
    • The situation also appears in reverse. Lisa has inflicted physical, verbal and psychological abuse on her brother repeatedly.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy:
    • Eddy's brother.
    • Lee and Marie Kanker to their younger sister May.
    • Inverted with little sister Sarah bullying big brother Ed.
  • Mac's cruel older brother named Terrence from Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends.
  • Kick Buttowski's older brother Brad.
    • In one episode, Kick gets wrestling lessons from a former wrestler, whose wrestling school was taken over by his own Big Brother Bully, who in turn is teaching Brad as well.
  • Raphael in the second Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon was shown to bully Michelangelo when they were little, although he is a bit nicer to him when they're older he does smack him when he says something stupid.
    • The tradition continues in the new Nick Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, where Raphael's tendency to smack Mikey around a bit extends to Donatello and even Leonardo (the last of which, at least, will hit back). A lot of Raphael's humor involves various insults leveled at his brothers.
  • South Park:
    • Stan's older sister Shelly.
    • Also Kyle to Ike in the first season. "Kick the baby!" (This seems to be done more for his and everyone else's amusement. He is still very protective of his little brother.)
    • Scott Tenorman to Cartman, though they don't know they're half-brothers at the time. Incensed at being pushed around by Scott, Cartman eventually gets his own back.
  • Tommy Turnbull's older brother, Donnie, from Robot Boy.
  • Duncan Douglas, the older brother of Dexter Douglas.
  • Inverted in Avatar: The Last Airbender, where the little sister, Azula, bullies her big brother Zuko. Eventually this turns into a Cain and Abel relationship.
  • Bobby's World: Bobby's older brother Derek
  • Hey Arnold!: Gerald's older brother Jamie-o.
  • In the Mega Man cartoon, Proto Man was this.
  • Recess: Averted with Vince's older brother Chad, subverted with T.J.'s older sister Becky, since she's nicer to him at the end of Recess: School's Out, but mostly just a Bratty Teenage Daughter, and as for Spinelli's older brother Joey, not much is known about him...except that he's in prison.
  • In Rugrats, Drew was like this to Stu when they were kids and doesn't quite seem to have grown out of it.
  • Vicky is this to her little sister Tootie in The Fairly Oddparents.
  • The first few episodes of Stanley depicted Lionel as this; He turned into a Cool Big Brother after that.
  • Family Guy inverts this with Chris, Meg, and Stewie. Meg is the eldest sibling, but she is constantly abused and bullied by Chris, who is the middle child. Stewie, being the youngest (and a baby) of the three, also abuses Meg, but not as much as Chris and has made attempts to stick up for Meg on a few occasions.
  • Fred's brother from Time Warp Trio.
  • Gart DeFault from Robot and Monster is a rare example. Rather than physically threatening his younger brother Robot, he uses Alpha Bitch tricks to ruin his life.
    • Also, the DeFault family are also mean to him and the others. The only one (apparently) to have a kind heart of this "family" is Gizmo... even if he's schizophrenic.
  • The third season of Superjail! introduced "The Triplets", a group of older brothers to the Twins. Immediately in their introduction, they proceed to verbally intimidate the Twins. After they all meet face-to-face, the Triplets proceed to beat the Twins up and humiliate them. We then learn that sibling rivalry can escalate to the point of wars on their planet if the younger siblings don't properly respect their elders (that is, to hand over anything said elders demand from them).
  • Total Drama: In the finale of World Tour it's revealed that Alejandro despises being called Al due to the fact that his older brother Jose (who is apparently better than him at everything) has called him that all his life. It came to a head in an episode of All Stars when Jose made an appearance and the two had a boxing match (the challenge of the episode was a boxing match with everyone's worst fear). During that fight, Jose proceeded to call his brother Al the entire time and then insulted Heather by calling her personality unattractive. Alejandro snapped after that point, and needless to say, it didn't end well for Jose.
    • In Pakhitew Island, Amy is this to her twin Sister Samey.
  • It's mentioned in the backstory to The Legend of Korra that Tenzin was often beaten up by his older siblings as a child. It's implied this is because they were jealous of him being their father's favorite kid (being the only Airbender), and even as adults their relationship is less-than perfect.
  • The Powerpuff Girls:
    • Although they're technically the same age, Buttercup sometimes veers into this territory towards Bubbles, like destroying her chalk in "All Chalked Up," but she shows that she cares for Bubbles. Occasionally, Buttercup merely teases her sisters a bit and sometimes, she doesn't intend to make them feel bad.
    • The "Forced Kin" episode features one who repeatedly calls his brother "stupid." Similarly, in the next scene, a military officer is also shown to call his subordinate "stupid."
  • Grojband: Trina to Corey, as she is rude to him.
  • Inverted in Dexter's Laboratory with Lalavava and Mandark. Even though Lalavava had one appearance, she proved herself to be dominating and demanding towards her older brother. It had reached a point where she threatened to beat him up if he didn't help her, which had Mandark begging her not to hurt him.
  • In the U.S. Acres segments of Garfield and Friends, Orson is unlucky enough to have three big brothers who are like this. (And they don't limit their bullying to him; the whole farm is afraid of them.)
  • One episode of Kim Possible shows that this is how Bonnie's sisters behave towards her.

Alternative Title(s):

Big Sister Bully