[[quoteright:179: [[Franchise/StarWars http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/180px-Dengar_and_Fett.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:180:[[Quotes/TheEmpireStrikesBack "Their kind of scum," in person.]]]]

->''"Where life had no value, death, sometimes, had its price. That is why the bounty killers appeared."''
-->-- ''Film/ForAFewDollarsMore''

Born of the [[TheWestern Old West]] but found in many other genres since, the bounty hunter makes a living pursuing criminals for the price on their heads. His line of work often makes him gruff and cynical, if he lives long enough, and in the eyes of some citizens, he may be only slightly better (or worse) than the criminals he hunts.

Sometimes, the bounty hunter captures criminals and brings them back to face trial (which is how real bounty hunters operate nowadays). But other times, especially in Westerns, the bounty hunter's reward is of the "Dead or Alive" variety, and many bounty hunters of the latter type kill their bounties rather than let them RunForTheBorder. These kinds of bounty hunters are often called "bounty killers" or, more pejoratively, [[ProfessionalKiller "assassins" or "headhunters"]]. This has almost never been TruthInTelevision, though that problem can be {{Hand Wave}}d if the bounty in question is exceptionally dangerous, put out by a criminal, or wanted by a corrupt, tyrannical, or failed state. Or if this occurs in a fictional setting, obviously.

The bounty hunter is one of the most diverse roles and depending on his choices (and his employers) he can be ''anything''. Sometimes the Bounty Hunter is a villain, a sadist who profits off the death and suffering of others and who couldn't care less about justice. In that case, the best he can possibly be is a NominalHero who may hunt villains and do the right thing for all the wrong reasons. If that's the case then it is almost guaranteed that he will come in conflict with the heroes either because their head promises the biggest paycheck or because he wants to be the one to capture the criminal and won't hesitate to kill and become himself a criminal over it. Sometimes he's a GlorySeeker who wants to bring down the toughest targets. More often, though, he is a just a working stiff who tries to do the right thing -- or something close to it. Buried deep within his grizzled, world-weary exterior is still an idealist with a heart of gold. Because there is nothing that prevents a Bounty Hunter from taking both legal and shady bounties, this character is usually a LawfulNeutral.

The Bounty Hunter is increasingly popular in SpeculativeFiction ever since [[Franchise/StarWars Boba Fett]] made it cool. It helps that space is thought of as ''another'' "frontier", and Western tropes [[SpaceWestern go well with science fiction]]. And since it's so cool, most often bounty hunters in fiction are depicted as extremely skilled individuals and will prove a challenge for the main characters unless they are either there just to show us how overpowered our hero is or if the bounty hunters are themselves the main character(s).

When in the company of actual bounty hunters, you will speak of them as [[InsistentTerminology "bail enforcement officers"]]. Except for [[ComicBook/DeathsHead that one robot]] who prefers the term "freelance peace-keeping agent".

See also: InspectorJavert, PriceOnTheirHead and WantedPoster.



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Bounty hunting is the occupation of Jet Black, Spike Spiegel, Faye Valentine, and about 300,000 folks in the ''Anime/CowboyBebop'' universe. In fact, so many people make a living chasing criminals in the future that a cheesy Western-themed TV series (a cross between ''{{Series/Bonanza}}'' and an interplanetary ''Series/AmericasMostWanted'') exists to provide them with intel on known bounty heads. All bounties must be taken alive and bounty hunters are liable for any damage they cause to bystanders or property, which is why [[DestructiveSavior the cast]] [[PerpetualPoverty miss almost every big bounty]], as well as in one particularly unlucky case, ''crashed into a police station'', and once when they weren't given a bounty for stopping an AI in a satellite as it technically doesn't count as "alive".
* ''Manga/{{Gunnm}}'''s leading characters Ido and Gally/Alita are both bounty hunters, along with half the cast in the early books.
* Nagi from the ''Anime/TenchiUniverse'' TV series is a bounty hunter who acts as Ryoko's InspectorJavert- and her [[TheMinnesotaFats Minnesota Fats]].
* The ''Manga/GunsmithCats'', Rally Vincent and Minnie-May Hopkins (and friends), spend most of their time as bounty hunters when they're not running their titular gun store. Rally and Minnie-May hold the distinction of being one of the most accurate portrayals of real-life bounty hunters that can be found in anime, or at least getting a lot closer to the real thing than most shows do. Unlike most other hunters, they maintain very close ties with their local police forces and are ''not'' regarded as being above or outside the law by any means; on one memorable occasion, a crook managed to kidnap Minnie-May because his and Rally's high-speed chase caught police attention and ended with Rally being arrested for breaking traffic laws.
* ''LightNovel/VampireHunterD'' is a sort of the old west-style bounty hunter - [[VampireHunter albeit of a very specific type of quarry]]. Though as the books and {{The Movie}}s went on, he evolved from bounty hunter to a mercenary, or even an odd-job man. There's other bounty hunters in the canon, but they're usually of the sadistic type.
* In ''Manga/HyperPolice'', all law enforcement in their post-magical-apocalypse world is handled by private companies of bounty hunters. The main characters make their money by claiming bounties. Licensing procedures are exacting and complex. And ''anyone'' can stick a bounty on the internet and expect the person to be delivered.
* Train, Sven, and Eve from ''Manga/BlackCat'' are "sweepers," which are essentially the same thing as bounty hunters.
* Inverted in ''Manga/{{Trigun}}'', where the main character Vash is the one that has a bounty on his head. A sixty billion double dollar one at that. However, there are many unimportant side characters that are bounty hunters in there, and most of the destruction that follows Vash around is caused by people interested in the price on his head. The secondary protagonists, Meryl and Millie, seem like bounty hunters at first but are in fact insurance agents sent to minimize the massive collateral damage that bounty hunters after Vash always cause.
* Nadie of ''Anime/ElCazadorDeLaBruja'' is nominally a bounty hunter, but her actual job seems to blur the lines between bodyguard, hired gun, and assassin.
* There's a large presence of bounty hunters (for relatively small bounties; large bounties are almost always for OneManArmy[=/=]PersonOfMassDestruction types that few people outside high-ranking Marines and fellow pirates could possibly take down) in the ''Manga/OnePiece'' world, given that one of the ways the government keeps crime in check is by offering rewards for captured or killed criminals. They, however, pay 30% less if the criminal is killed, as only a live criminal can be given a public execution. It is possible for a bounty to be for live capture only, though to date there is only one known example of this [[spoiler:involving a criminal who is also royalty]]. While given the nature of the story, most bounty targets are pirates, land-based criminals and the anti-government Revolutionary Army also qualify.
** Roronoa Zoro, one of the protagonists, chased bounties for a living before joining with Luffy, and his past helped the Marines give him the epithet "Pirate Hunter". His former partners Johnny and Yosaku remain bounty hunters, though seeing as they operate out of the East Blue they mostly chase small-time criminals.
** The pirate and former Warlord of the Sea, Sir Crocodile led the Baroque Works, a fearsome organization of bounty hunters. Infiltrating the Baroque Works, Vivi and Igaram went undercover as bounty hunters as well, one of the reasons why Vivi met the Straw Hats in the first place. The top 5 of them were very strong bounty hunters, particularly Daz Bonez (Mister 1) and Bon Clay (Mister 2).
*** After the outbreak from Impel Down, [[spoiler:it's suggested that Daz Bonez is now a pirate like Mister Crocodile because he joined him. Galdino (Mister 3) is pretty much confirmed as a pirate since he joined Buggy who is now one of the new Seven Warlords of the Sea. Bon Clay is still in Impel Down, but he's now the "queen" of Newkama, the 5.5th level]].
** While their primary job is scrapping retired ships, the Franky Family of Water 7 also did bounty hunting work on the side. This came to an end after the Enies Lobby Arc, when their leader Franky was issued a bounty of his own and joined the Straw Hat Pirates. The rest of the group move into other, less dangerous jobs.
* Machika in ''Manga/ImmortalRain''. She's following in her grandfather Zol's footsteps, although the bounty hunting part doesn't come up all that much.
* Yuya of ''Manga/SamuraiDeeperKyo'', hunting down "the man with the scar on his back" who killed her brother. She periodically threatens to turn in Benitora or Kyo for their bounties.
* ''Anime/OutlawStar'' deconstructs several aspects of the trope. Gene Starwind and his kid partner Jim are technically odd-job men rather than bounty hunters, not least because [[PerpetualPoverty bounties occur far too infrequently for them to make a living on hunting alone]]. And in the rare case where a bounty is put out, the reward they get is usually far less than the trouble they spent on it. In the end, most of their time is spent on unrelated activities like treasure-hunting and squaring off against the pirate clans.
* The Warriors of the Organization in ''Manga/{{Claymore}}'' function a lot like the example of ''LightNovel/VampireHunterD'' above. When a yoma preys on a settlement, the citizens round up money and make a request to the Organization. They dispatch a Warrior who slays the yoma and one of the handlers appears later to pick up the money. Reasonably, if the Warrior is slain, the Organization does not collect the fee until another Warrior successfully completes the mission. Blurring the lines of the trope, however, is the fact that while the Warriors do seem to have money (Clare once dumped a huge sum on Raki's lap when she was assigned to fight an Awakened One and Theresa could afford rather fancy clothes for a certain TagalongKid), they do not actually seem to want or even need the money. Their job is to kill yoma; it's what they do. Various motivations have been shown, but a pure mercenary motive has yet to be evident in any of the Warriors.
* Almost all ninjas in ''Anime/{{Naruto}}'', good or evil, are this in one way or another. Successful ninja almost invariably have somebody who will put a bounty on their head, be it the legitimate government of a rival nation or a criminal organization. And capturing criminals is one of the many missions that a ninja could be hired for.
* In ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'', after the case gets [[ClearMyName wrongly accused of blowing up a Gateport]], they have occasional encounters with bounty hunters who want to bring them in. The one group that appears on screen, the Canis Niger hunters, nearly capture Nodoka before being [[CurbStompBattle utterly annihilated by Negi]].
* [[Anime/MobileSuitGundamWing Duo Maxwell]] is this in the ''Frozen Teardrops'' novel.
* Some hunters from ''Manga/HunterXHunter'' are bounty hunters. In-universe, this type are called blacklist hunters. Not only that hunters in general are strong, hunters are also rich, thanks to their hunter licences.
* In ''Anime/LupinIIIDeadOrAlive'', when Crisis puts out the "Dead or Alive" bounty on Lupin, at least three bounty hunters enter Zufu to attempt to capture/kill him. Lupin is so busy trying to escape from them that Inspector Zenigata manages to arrest him.
* Hazuki is one in ''Anime/BladeAndSoul'', and is drawn to the prospect of Alka's 7000 gold bounty Palam put out on her. There are others, but they're killed within moments of seeing Alka.
* ''Anime/SpaceDandy's'' job is a variation of this, hunting down undiscovered alien species and cashing them in to the Alien Registration Center for sizable bounties. He's generally fairly inept at this and often fails due to incompetence, bad luck or (in some cases) letting the bounty go for their own good. What exactly happens to the aliens after they're brought in for registration never specified and seems a bit inconsistent. While deliberately letting aliens he's befriended go might imply that it's something unpleasant, it could just as easily imply that Dandy is too stupid to know since Alien Registration Center are certainly not portrayed as villains.
* Ryo Saeba of ''Manga/CityHunter'' is stated to have worked as this near the end of his stay in the US.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* Creator/DCComics' SelfDemonstrating/{{Lobo}} catches interstellar fugitives, whether they're running from the law or just rich crime lords. It's a job that basically allows him to be a complete ass to everyone around him and still get paid.
* DC also had a comic called ''Manhunter'' about a superpowered bounty hunter that retrieves super villains who jumped their bond, strictly for the money.
* In the ''ComicBook/{{Preacher}}'' series of graphic novels, the Saint of Killers spent a while working as a Headhunter in the old west, long before transmuting into the ImplacableMan he is today...
* In ''ComicBook/JonSableFreelance'', Jon would supplement his mercenary work by undertaking bounty hunting jobs.
* ComicBook/JonahHex, discussed in the WesternAnimation examples below, first appeared as a [[TheWestern Western]] character in Franchise/TheDCU.
* Johnny Alpha, the protagonist in the ''ComicBook/StrontiumDog'' stories from the British AnthologyComic ''ComicBook/TwoThousandAD''.
* ComicBook/{{Deadpool}} was employed to hunt down unregistered superheroes, for about an hour, during ComicBook/CivilWar. Then he was sacked, mainly thanks to Cable. It didn't help that the first heroes he went after were the ComicBook/GreatLakesAvengers, who were ''registered''.
* After Comicbook/SheHulk's disbarment in her late-2000s series, she became a Bounty Hunter employed by a bail bonds company owned by her former law firm.
* The title character of the graphic novel ''ComicBook/{{Jinx}}''.
* Exeter from ''ComicBook/{{Scion}}''. A "Lesser Race" being who hunts fugitive Lesser Races out of a sense of self-loathing.
* ComicBook/DeathsHead, though [[BerserkButton he insists]] on being called a "[[InsistentTerminology Freelance Peacekeeping Agent]]". People don't make the mistake twice.
* The ComicBook/SavageDragon was briefly a bounty hunter shortly after being kicked off the police force.
* The 21st century version of Nighthawk in Franchise/TheDCU is a bounty hunter.
* In the 2005 ''ComicBook/DaughtersOfTheDragon'' miniseries, Colleen Wing and Misty Knight ran their own bail bonds firm.
* ComicBook/LuckyLuke book ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chasseur_de_primes The Bounty Hunter]]'' (in French ''Chasseur de primes'') is a hilarious parody of the trope. Following a short introductory treatise on the general status of bounty hunters in the [[TheWestern Old West]], we get introduced to the titular character, Elliot Belt, a notorious and unscrupulous representative of his trade. NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Elliot Belt's appearance is an obvious nod to Western actor Lee Van Cleef, particularly his acting roles as merciless bounty hunters.
* In the ''ComicBook/AstroCity'' legal system, some superheroes make a living by registering as bounty hunters with the local authorities. They are sanctioned to capture criminals (super-powered and otherwise), and are paid by picking up checks made out to their real identities (which are kept secret from the public).
* As the series is a Western, bounty hunters often show up in ''ComicBook/TexWiller'', with more than a few forcing confessions out of their quarries (in case they're just suspects) and, in at least one occasion, using the body of some random man to try and claim a bounty on another criminal.
* An alternate universe had ComicBook/ThePunisher as a licensed bounty hunter in a WildWest version of the Marvel Universe.

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* In ''FanFic/OffTheLine'', countless of them are constantly chasing after Cloud/Rainstorm for his massive bounty which they need to kill and loot him to get. They are noted to be an opportunistic and unpleasant bunch who often hunt after lower level players instead of the more stronger players. Rainstorm would kill them in order to defend himself or for sport.

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Shrek}}'':
** Pied Piper is described as one of the best bounty hunters in ''WesternAnimation/ShrekForeverAfter''. He is hired by [[BigBad Rumpelstiltskin]] to capture Shrek. Piper uses a [[MagicMusic magical flute]] with a dial that can be set to any creature, among which are rats, witches, and ogres. When set to a creature and played, all of these within earshot start dancing uncontrollably and follow Pied Piper.
** Puss in Boots can also be described as this, although his job in ''WesternAnimation/Shrek2'' is to kill Shrek, not capture him. This would make him more of an assassin.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* ''Film/{{Domino}}'' staring Creator/KeiraKnightley, based (very loosely) on real-life bounty hunter Domino Harvey. Unfortunately, it basically deletes or downplays all of the things that make Domino's story unique, and turns the character into a typical Hollywood cliche.
* [[Creator/JimmyStewart James Stewart]] plays one in ''Film/TheNakedSpur''; he's trying to catch a fugitive to get a $5000 reward so he can buy back the ranch that was stolen from him.
* ''Franchise/StarWars'' features a number of bounty hunters. It may be the definitive example of the name being misapplied; "mercenary" or "hired gun" may be a more accurate term, as they are commonly hired for purposes like guarding, theft and assassination.
** Greedo shows up first, trying to capture Han Solo and cash in on the bounty Jabba the Hutt has placed on him.
** The Empire eventually hires the services of a number of bounty hunters, most notably [[EnsembleDarkhorse Boba Fett]]. (Pictured above with fellow bounty hunter Dengar, who he occasionally teams up with.)
** ''Film/AttackOfTheClones'' features Boba's father, Jango. Like Boba, he's supposedly the best bounty hunter in the galaxy. Also like Boba he operates more as an assassin and mercenary than an actual bounty hunter. Or at the very least, he's not choosy about whether the bounty he's pursuing is a legal one, so long as the credits are good.[[note]]Technically, the bounty/assassination contract he's working ''is'' legal in the eyes of the Neimoidian government, but very much illegal in the eyes of the Galactic Republic government.[[/note]]
* Creator/SergioLeone's {{Spaghetti Western}}s, especially the latter two movies of the ''Film/DollarsTrilogy'', have bounty hunters as protagonists.
** In ''Film/ForAFewDollarsMore'', the [[NoNameGiven Man With No Name]] and his rival and partner Mortimer were bounty killers.
** In ''Film/TheGoodTheBadAndTheUgly'', the Man With No Name engaged in a con involving turning in his partner for the bounty on his head, freeing him from the noose by shooting off the rope, and then splitting the take between them. The villain Angel Eyes is a much darker version. His very first scene involves his target trying to pay him to kill his employer by offering ''more'' than what he was paid. Angel Eyes takes the money but simply tells him "When they pay me, I always see the job through" and shoots him. In the very next scene, he collects his money from his employer and says the exact same line before brutally murdering him. They don't call him "The Bad" for nothing!
* Bernardo O'Reilly (Creator/CharlesBronson) from ''[[Film/TheMagnificentSeven1960 The Magnificent Seven]]'' used to be well-paid bounty hunter but by the time he's recruited to the seven he's so broke that the measly pay for what is likely a SuicideMission is a fortune to him.
* In Creator/ClintEastwood's ''Film/TheOutlawJoseyWales'', the title character guns down a number of bounty hunters looking to collect on his $5,000 head.
* In ''Film/TheHatefulEight'', two main characters are bounty hunters with differing methods: Major Marquis Warren, a black former Union soldier who prefers to shoot first and turn in the bodies, and John "The Hangman" Ruth, who is famous for his insistence on delivering his prisoners alive so he can watch them stand trial and hang. When they meet each other at the start of the film in a snow-covered wilderness, Major Warren is sitting in the middle of the road on top of the frozen bodies of three dead criminals, while Ruth is riding in a stagecoach with his fugitive Daisy Domergue handcuffed to him to prevent her escape.
* John Hurt's character, Jellon Lamb, in ''Film/TheProposition'' is a drunken bounty hunter who believes in neither God nor evolution, but ''is'' a big racist. He has a lot of fun with the [[OneSceneWonder role]].
* In ''Film/TheGreatSilence'', another Spaghetti Western, the majority of the villains are bounty hunters, and they operate exactly like assassins. The protagonist is a bounty hunter paid by the families of their victims to bring them to justice. The film is often seen as an intentional counterpoint to the Leone Westerns.
* Beck, the main character of ''Film/TheRundown'', is a "retrieval expert" hired mainly to collect debts or other stuff that his boss wants from people, or in the case of the main plot of the movie, track down people who have cut and run and bring them back to him. He's described in many summaries as a "bounty hunter."
* Steve [=McQueen=] plays a bounty hunter in the 1980 film ''The Hunter'' where he gives Levar Burton, a fugitive who can't believe the guy can just up and grab him off the street, a copy of the quote from the U.S. Supreme Court decision in ''Taylor v. Taintor'' (please see the [[Quotes/BountyHunter quotes page]]), which Burton incredulously reads out loud. The movie is about a real-life bounty hunter, Ralph "Papa" Thorson (who can be seen in a cameo serving Steve [=McQueen=] a beer).
* In ''Film/BladeRunner'', Rick Deckard and other "Blade Runners" who hunt down and kill replicants on Earth are essentially bounty hunters. In [[Literature/DoAndroidsDreamOfElectricSheep the original novel]], they are, in fact, called bounty hunters.
* Over-the-top BadassBiker Leonard Smalls in ''Film/RaisingArizona''.
* The repo men in ''Film/RepoMan'' seem to like exoticizing their jobs by thinking of themselves as bounty hunters of cars.
* In ''Film/MidnightRun'', Robert De Niro plays a former cop turned bounty hunter who catches a former mob bookie and must make a moral choice of whether to collect the bounty or turn the bookie back over to the crooked cops who got him kicked out of the force. A competing bounty hunter constantly tries to steal the bookie away from him.
* Gerard Butler plays one in ''Film/TheBountyHunter''
* Bounty hunters are sent to eliminate the titular creatures in ''Film/{{Critters}}'' and are featured to some extent in all of the sequels.
* One drops in partway through ''Film/HunterPrey''.
* Jake Sharp (Woody Strode) in ''Film/TheProfessionals''.
* Many bounty hunters show up in ''Franchise/TheChroniclesOfRiddick'', all in pursuit of the title character. Johns and Toombs are among them. ''WesternAnimation/DarkFury'' is almost entirely set on a ship full of them, which is where Toombs came from. The ship in ''VideoGame/AssaultOnDarkAthena'' is half this, half private military force/slave ship.
* Rutger Hauer plays one in ''Film/WantedDeadOrAlive''.
* Creighton Duke in ''Film/JasonGoesToHellTheFinalFriday'' is a bounty hunter who specializes in capturing serial killers.
* Dr. King Schultz (Creator/ChristophWaltz) in ''Film/DjangoUnchained'' is a bounty hunter who kills his bounties and brings their bodies back to get paid. Django himself becomes one when he starts to assist him.
%%* ''Film/JonahHex''
* Sekulik in ''Film/WildWind'' is paid by the Germans to hunt down partisans.
* In the Creator/JohnWayne VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory Western ''{{Film/Chisum}}'', Dan Nodeen (Christopher George) is a bounty killer.
-->Mook: Deader than a can of corned beef.
-->Sheriff Brady: You just had to kill him, huh?
-->Nodeen: A whole lot less trouble that way.
* The Accountant from ''Film/DriveAngry'' is essentially one for Hell. His job is to track down those who have EscapedFromHell and bring them back.

* OlderThanFeudalism: Likely the UrExample is Saul from the [[Literature/TheBible Book of Acts]], who was first shown accepting payment for arresting the followers of Christ. This is before Christ struck him blind and he had a HeelFaithTurn, changing his name to Paul.
* The titular character in Janet Evanovich's ''Literature/StephaniePlum'' series is a bounty hunter, albeit a spectacularly bad one. She's in terrible shape, dresses more Jersey Girl than SWAT, frequently has her cars blown up (and a funeral home, once), and keeps her gun unloaded in the cookie jar (not that she's licensed to carry it anyway). Luckily for her (and fans), she's got Ranger, an ex-Special Forces "primo bounty hunter", and his "Merry Men" to clean up after her. Ranger jokes that his company's budget has a line-item for Stephanie's misadventures, listed under "Entertainment".
** Pretty much everyone who works for Vincent Plum Bail Bonds falls into the same description. Luckily for them, their clients are just as woefully inept at jumping bail as they are at recovering them.
* Just about everyone in Mike Resnick's SpaceWestern ''Literature/SantiagoAMythOfTheFarFuture'' are bounty hunters. The largest bounty in the universe, the one they all secretly (or openly) hunt after, is Santiago himself. [[spoiler:Some have actually succeeded, but they don't live long enough to boast of it, because Santiago is a LegacyCharacter and has a ''lot'' of allies.]]
* In ''[[Literature/ArtemisFowl Artemis Fowl and the Lost Colony]]'', Holly and Mulch are forced to become bounty hunters in order to pay the rent for the offices to their PI business. Unusually for this trope, the bounty hunting is portrayed accurately, in that they're searching for a criminal who has skipped bail and are forbidden to carry weapons.
* In Creator/MichaelCrichton's ''Literature/{{Next}}'', a bounty hunter is trying to grab a relative of a man from whom they had obtained the right to own his gene sequence, but when it was lost, they are of the impression they can obtain a DNA sample from one of his relatives by suing her, then filing for a writ to have her brought into the court where they were located.
* ''Literature/TheWitcher'' novels introduced the character of Leo Bonhart, who is really good at his job and so utterly vile at the same time that he makes [[Series/{{Firefly}} Jubal Early]] look like a puppy.
** The titular Witchers also qualify to a degree, taking out monsters with bounties on their heads.
* Lots of Richard K. Morgan's characters, including but not limited to Takeshi Kovacs from the ''Literature/TakeshiKovacs'' series and Carl Marsalis from ''[[Literature/BlackMan Thirteen]],'' fall into some flavor of this trope. Kovacs is an ex-UN Special Forces operator who works as a private investigator, mercenary, and general hired gun, while Marsalis is ex-British Special Forces who specializes in hunting down genetically modified people on behalf of the government. Neither is a particularly nice guy, but then again, they don't inhabit very nice worlds either.
* ''Literature/TheCityOfDreamingBooks'' by Walter Moers has ''Book Hunters'', who could have been taken straight from ''Franchise/StarWars'', except that they make underground raids for old books. They got the patchwork armor and rusty swords and like to prey on each other for the greatest prizes.
* Velith Il-nok of ''Literature/TheSiranthaJaxSeries'' is definitely a stand-up individual who is in the profession for the good it does rather than just getting paid. It's interesting in that, even while being alien, he is more "human" than some actual human characters.
* In the short story [[http://www.ac-mag.com/story.php?issue_id=5&story_id=25 "A Good Boy"]] by Desmond Warzel, Stitsky is a Bounty Hunter of the contemporary sort who makes his living retrieving bail-jumpers; as the story commences, however, he's overstepped his jurisdiction, having accepted a couple's commission to locate and retrieve their runaway son.
* ''Literature/DoAndroidsDreamOfElectricSheep'' features bounty hunters who track down and kill [[ArtificialHuman androids]] who have escaped into mainstream society and are posing as humans, much like [[Film/BladeRunner the film it was later adapted into]]. Many characters express distaste for bounty hunters and their role in society. Unlike in the movie, they are known simply as "bounty hunters", rather than "blade runners".
* The sci-fi anthology ''[[Literature/RieselTalesTwoHunters Riesel Tales: Two Hunters]]'' centers around the adventures of the two titular bounty hunters on the [[CityPlanet city-covered]] [[WretchedHive criminal world]] of Riesel.
* ''Literature/WaxAndWayne'': Wax was one of these when he went out to the Roughs. He called himself a "lawman for hire," and in his early years he was known for grabbing the most dangerous bounties off the board and coming back a few days later with the target tied up on his saddle. The truth is that in those early years, he was short on money, so he just grabbed the biggest bounties he could find. Either way, he did such a good job that when the sheriff of Weathering eventually retired, he gave Wax his badge.
* ''Literature/TheHanSoloTrilogy'': a number of them are sent after Han over stealing from the Besilijic clan, including Boba Fett, who becomes his nemesis.
* ''Literature/TheSpiritThief'': in the Council Kingdoms, bounties and, by extension, bounty hunters are how most criminals are pursued and imprisoned. Most notable bounty hunter in the series is Josef, who actually left the job a year prior to the beginning of the story, when Eli convinced him that going with him would let Josef find better opponents.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/TheAdventuresOfBriscoCountyJr'': The eponymous star was a Bounty Hunter hired to capture the outlaw gang who murdered his father. His rival, Lord Bowler, was also looking to collect the bounty on those outlaws.
* ''Series/BurnNotice'': In one episode, Fiona is working as a bounty hunter and ropes Michael into helping her, only to have the man they capture hire them to prove his innocence. Bounty hunting seems to be Fiona's primary legitimate source of income when she is not working as an illegal arms dealer.
* ''Series/{{Castle}}'': [[LoveInterest Beckett's]] former mentor and flame returns as a bounty hunter. He tries to get her to work for him to catch crooks, get better pay, and avoid the red tape. Beckett refuses. [[spoiler:He is later killed, causing Beckett to go on a RoaringRampageOfRevenge]].
* ''Series/{{ChaseNBC}}'': Ben Crowley.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'': One reports the whereabouts of the fugitive Chimeron princess to the Bannermen in "Delta and the Bannermen".
* ''Series/DogTheBountyHunter'': This show is a RealityShow following Hawaiian-based bounty hunter Duane "Dog" Chapman. His brushes with the law and use of [[NWordPrivileges racial slurs]] have made him something of a controversial figure.
* ''Series/TheDukesOfHazzard'': Jeffrey Steele, the VillainOfTheWeek in the 1981 episode "The $10 Million Sheriff," who pursues the innocent Bo and Luke as though they were No. 1 on the [=FBI=]'s 10 Most Wanted List.
* ''Series/TheFallGuy'': This show is about a team of stuntmen who moonlight as bounty hunters of bail jumpers, for a bail bondsperson.
* ''Series/{{Firefly}}'': Jubal Early from the episode "Objects in Space" was a bounty hunter sent to collect on the bounty for Simon and River. He quickly proves himself to be a PsychoForHire who is in it for the sadism, and is not above threatening to rape Kaylee- or threatening Simon with raping her if he won't reveal where River is hiding- in order to get what he wants.
* ''Series/GameOfThrones'': Cersei offers a lordship for whoever brings her Tyrion's head, leading to the death of at least one innocent dwarf.
* ''Series/KamenRiderKiva'': Likewise, Keisuke Nago was a bounty hunter shortly before becoming Kamen Rider IXA.
* ''Series/KamenRiderOOO'': In some ways, Kamen Rider Birth could be seen as a Bounty Hunter. He was hired to retrieve a huge amount of Cell Medals, and in order to get them, has to destroy Yummy or Greeed. This had shades of real world bounty hunters, who are, by law, technically hired to retrieve the bail, which is physically represented by the criminal they're capturing.
* ''Series/{{Killjoys}}'': The shows revolves around a crew of interplanetary bounty hunters in a distant star system. They work for an organization of bounty hunters called the '''R'''eclamation '''A'''pprehension '''C'''oalition, commonly known as The Rack. The Rack is highly organized with their members only allowed to take bounties that fit their certification. A Level One warrant is a property retrieval bounty and only allows violence in self defense. A Level Four warrant is issued against the most dangerous criminals and is dead-or-alive. A Level Five warrant is a straight up assassination mission. The Rack acts pretty much as a secondary law enforcement agency for the star system.
* ''Series/LawAndOrder'': Devoted an episode to bounty hunters; the hunters in question were violent thugs though.
* ''Series/{{Lost}}'': Ilana is (or claims to be) a bounty hunter hired to bring Sayid to Guam.
* ''Series/{{Lucifer}}'': After leaving her job at Lux nightclub, Mazikeen becomes a bounty hunter with the LAPD.
* ''Series/MacGyver1985'': Frequently crossed paths with the Coltons, an entire ''family'' of bounty hunters. They only all appeared together in the PoorlyDisguisedPilot for an aborted SpinOff.
* ''Series/TheMagnificentSeven'' [[TheSeries series]]: Vin Tanner used to operate as a bounty hunter; dramatic irony kicked in when he was framed for murder and had to go on the run himself.
* ''Series/{{Merlin}}'': Halig.
* ''Series/MyNameIsEarl'': Jesse in the episode "[[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin The Bounty Hunter]]".
* ''Series/{{Person of Interest}}'': In episode 4.18, Frankie Wells is this, using the title as a pretense to hunt down her brother's killer.
* ''Franchise/PowerRangers'':
** ''Series/PowerRangersNinjaStorm'' features Vexacus, one of the later villains to join Lothor's crew. It's mainly used as shorthand for "this season's [[TheStarscream backstabber type]]" - the one being we see Vexacus hunt is an alien whose power he wants to take for himself, not an employer.
** ''Series/PowerRangersDinoCharge'' features the BigBad, Sledge, who is after the Ener-Gems for his own ambitions for domination. The monsters he sends to destroy the rangers are other criminals he's captured and promised freedom to the one who brings him an Ener-Gem.
* ''Series/{{Psych}}'': Has an episode called "Bounty Hunters!" where Shawn and Gus try their hands at the job. HilarityEnsues. Though the incompetent [[spoiler:and crooked]] "Dog" parody who kept spooking the fugitive before Shawn and Gus could get him didn't help.
* ''Series/QuantumLeap'': Sam leapt into a Bounty Hunter in one episode.
* ''Series/{{Reaper}}'': Sam works as a bounty hunter for the Devil: instead of escaped criminals, he catches escaped souls.
* ''Series/{{Renegade}}'': This show is about a cop-turned-bounty hunter, a bounty hunter, and the latter's sister, who helps them hunt bounties.
* ''Series/{{Revolution}}'': Jacob from "[[Recap/RevolutionS1E2ChainedHeat Chained Heat]]", [[spoiler:Mia Clayton]] from "[[Recap/RevolutionS1E8TiesThatBind Ties That Bind]]", and Steve from "[[Recap/RevolutionS1E15Home Home]]". Jacob was spared by Miles at Charlie's urging, Jacob repays that by revealing their location to the militia, and Miles kills him off later on. [[spoiler:Mia Clayton]], despite being Nora Clayton's sister, proved to be extremely selfish, sold out her sister's friends to the militia, and Nora decided to just abandon her and let her walk back to Texas on her own. Steve tried to bring in [[spoiler:Priscilla Pittman]], whose only crime was killing a militia sergeant who tried to molest her 11-year-old-daughter in self-defense, but between Aaron and her, he got killed off. This show portrays bounty hunters in an extremely unsympathetic light.
* ''Series/RockyMountainBountyHunters'' follows two teams of real life fugitive recovery agents, Clint and Dayson from Colorado, and Rob and "Animal" in Minnesota as they bring in bail bond jumpers who have ceased contact with authorities or the bail bond companies, and are hiding out in the Rocky Mountains region of the United States.
* ''Series/{{Sinbad}}'': Tiger.
* ''Series/StargateSG1'': Has had a few. Aris Boch in season 3 and then several more in the season 10 episode "Bounty".
* ''Series/StarTrekEnterprise'': In "Bounty", Captain Archer is captured by a Tellarite bounty hunter who wants to hand him over to the Klingons in exchange for enough money to buy back his spaceship. [[spoiler:Archer eventually convinces the Tellarite to give him the means of escaping the Klingon cell once he's been handed over.]]
** Before that, Series/StarTrekVoyager featured the Hazari, an alien species from the Delta Quadrant who's [[PlanetOfHats hat]] is bounty hunting.
* ''Series/WantedDeadOrAlive'': Josh Randall.
* ''Series/LegendOfTheSeeker'': A bunch of them go after Richard in "Bounty" after a reward is offered to kill him by Darken Rahl. One in particular manages to get ahold of his pendant and use it to have a {{magic map}} created that shows Richard's location.
* ''Series/{{Colony}}'': Will's former partner works as one in the Santa Monica bloc to make ends meet.
* ''Series/OnceUponATime'': Emma's job before Storybrooke was as a bail collector. Those who skipped out on their bail, she would hunt down to arrest herself.
* ''Series/{{Flash Gordon|2007}}'': Baylin is a female bounty hunter from Mongo.
* ''Series/ChicagoJustice'': The Spanish government sends one to arrest a young woman based on Amanda Know and return her so she can be tried again on murder charges. Realistically, this is quite unlikely, since it would damage relations with the US. The US and Spain have an extradition treaty already (which they are shown invoking later) so going outside official channels like this makes no sense given that too.
* ''Series/BlakesSeven''. Given that the crew had a PriceOnTheirHead, plus Creator/ChrisBoucher's fondness for Western themes, these made an obligatory appearance.
** In "Bounty", the Liberator is seized by the Amagons, SpacePirates who engage in a variety of criminal activities including bounty hunting.
** In "Powerplay", Zee and Barr are the nicest and prettiest bounty hunters you could meet. [[spoiler:Pity their job is capturing people so they can be dissected for their HumanResources.]]
** In "Blake", the planet Gauda Prime is a CrapsackWorld where all laws have been suspended by the Federation High Council, in order to kill or drive off the colonists who legally owned the land. This naturally attracted a large number of criminals and psychopaths [[YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness who now have to be disposed of]] before law and order can be reintroduced, so they're being used as bounty hunters to [[WantedDeadOrAlive catch or kill]] their fellow lawbreakers. Our rebel anti-heroes are not pleased to hear that Blake, ostensibly their leader but who's been [[PutOnABus missing for the past couple of seasons]], is now [[TookALevelInJerkass working as one of these bounty hunters]]. [[spoiler:It turns out he's secretly recruiting another rebel force from among the criminals he's capturing.]]


[[folder:Pro Wrestling]]
* Goldenrod was described as being similar to a bounty hunter in Wrestling/KaijuBigBattel. She was on a mission to stop all city destroying kaiju, [[EnemyMine which made her an ally to the heroes]].
* The New Bounty Hunters, Ricky Murdock & Big Nasty Bill, the Wrestling/{{N|ational Wrestling Alliance}}WA Mid-South {{tag team}} champions who vacated the belts after doing their job and beating the Black Birds.
* David Shultz became a bounty hunter after his wrestling career ended in the mid-80's.
* Former Wrestling/{{ECW}} wrestler Wrestling/NewJack claims to have been a bounty hunter in RealLife and that he committed four justifiable homicides. However [[TakeOurWordForIt there is no outside evidence that proves either one of these claims to be true.]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* The ''TabletopGame/BattleTech'' universe has numerous Bounty Hunters; the most infamous is known simply as [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin The Bounty Hunter]], an enigmatic figure who never shows his face and rarely speaks. He's famous for his relentless nature, for never once letting a bounty escape, his unfailing loyalty to his employer, and his signature emerald-green ''Marauder'' Battlemech. In truth, the Bounty Hunter is a legacy of individuals who have been passing the title (and Mech) for over a century.
** [[spoiler:Recently, the Bounty Hunter betrayed his employer and seems to have been replaced by an impersonator]]
* Mongoose Games' ''Strontium Dog'' RPG, based on the ''Strontium Dog'' entry under [[AC:ComicBooks]] above.
* The "Bloodhound" prestige class in ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons''. The "Justicar" was similar.
** In the ''TabletopGame/{{Eberron}}'' setting House Tharashk dominates the market in this field, thanks to their [[PowerTattoo Dragonmarks]] of Finding.
* In ''TabletopGame/EclipsePhase'' they're known as Ego Hunters, and their job is a bit more difficult since many people change bodies like wardrobes.
* Quite a few of ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer}}'''s [[TheWitchHunter Witch Hunters]], despite the name, are basically petty thugs who only signed for the chance to exercise church-sanctioned bullying or bounty hunting.
** Bounty Hunter is an actual job in ''TabletopGame/WarhammerFantasyRoleplay''. It's actually one of the jobs that can lead to becoming a Witch Hunter (which is an advanced career). Bounty Hunters also shows up in some of the more rpg-oriented WH40K games like ''TabletopGame/{{Necromunda}}'' or in outright rpgs like ''TabletopGame/DarkHeresy''.
* The initial book for [[Creator/FantasyFlightGames Fantasy Flight's]] 2014 [[TabletopGame/StarWarsRoleplayingGame Starwars RPG]] has Bounty Hunter as one of the playable classes with three specializations. Gadgeteers in the vein of Boba Fett, who modify their weapons and armor to give them an advantage. Assassins adept at stealth and dealing ranged damage, and Survivalists skilled at tracking and surviving in the wild. With the Martial Artist, Operator, and Skip Tracer specializations being added in the "No Disintegrations" SourceBook. As well as rules for running bounty hunting focused missions.
* TabletopGame/{{Rifts}} had a few variations on this; the core rulebook featured the "Tracer" class which was generically Bounty Hunter-themed (and featured a picture of a guy in vaguely Fett-like armor), but the "New West" SourceBook actually contained a Bounty Hunter class patterned after the classic Western archetype.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'' features several quests where [[PlayerCharacter Hawke]] acts as a bounty hunter/mercenary for the Viscount, the Templars, the Qunari, or the occasional random bystander.
* ''Franchise/{{Metroid}}'' series heroine Samus Aran is usually described as a bounty hunter, although "mercenary" would probably be a more accurate job description, as her primary employer appears to be the [[TheFederation Galactic Federation]] and the jobs they assign her usually tend toward infiltrations, search-and-destroy, and other military operations. Other "bounty hunters" with vastly different motivations appear in the aptly named ''Metroid Prime: Hunters'' and ''Metroid Prime 3: Corruption''.
** Samus' missions for the Feds typically take the form of "kill X", where X is the enemy du jour. This makes her description as a bounty hunter slightly more accurate, as a bounty is paid for the things she kills. The only exceptions to the "kill X" missions are Metroid Prime 3, Hunters, and Fusion. Prime 2 can be an ''inferred'' mission: she's told to investigate the disappearance of a GF SpaceMarine squad, and she's "hired" by the Luminoth to eradicate the Ing. Super Metroid is debatable, since she's doing it all of her own accord (she doesn't ''have'' to chase Ridley down and get the baby Metroid back... [[RoaringRampageofRevenge but that's what she wants to do]]).
** The same can be said for Metroid Prime. She didn't have to follow that distress beacon, and then chase Ridley to Tallon IV. So really, she is a technical bounty hunter (as evidenced in the opening for Super, when she decides to hunt smaller bounty), but her ties with the Chozo and the Space Pirates keep getting in the way.
*** Thanks to the AnachronicOrder, there's [[{{Fanon}} plenty of room in the timeline]] for Samus to make a healthy living catching renegades and/or killing dangerous wildlife, both of which count as "bounty hunting".
*** There's also ''Metroid II: Return of Samus'' for the UsefulNotes/GameBoy, where her whole mission is to kill lots and ''lots'' of dangerous wildlife, namely the entire Metroid species, along with any creatures that get in the way.
** Incidentally, Creator/RetroStudios planned on having Samus fulfill more of a bounty-hunting role in ''Prime 3'', namely by having the player pick out actual bounties to go after. The higher-ups vetoed this, in part because of the GenreShift it would entail and in part because Samus doesn't really fit the role of bounty hunter to a T. The guys at Retro jokingly referred to her as a "pro-bono hunter" instead.
* In ''VisualNovel/{{SNATCHER}}'', due to understaffing, JUNKER is forced to hire bounty hunters to help in taking down the eponymous [=SNATCHERs=]. However, only one (named Random/Randam Hajile) plays a major role in the story.
* When they aren't racing on the ''VideoGame/FZero'' tracks, Captain Falcon and Samurai Goroh are rival bounty hunters.
* ''VideoGame/GuiltyGear'''s Bridget is a self proclaimed bounty hunter. However, he's not exactly very competent at it. His only real successful bounty to date happened to consist of innocent people. Ky Kiske only paid him due to feeling bad for the poor little guy.
** Sol Badguy is a more experienced and competent example, [[spoiler:and it's a career that fits nicely with his "hunting down and killing all other Gears" thing]].
** The Whole premise of ''Guilty Gear X'' was that a large bounty was placed on mysterious command-type Gear [[TechnicalPacifist Dizzy's]] head, so most of the characters introduced in that game and its derivatives are also Bounty Hunters, such as Bridget and Jam.
* ''VideoGame/RedDeadRevolver'' includes the protagonist Red as a bounty hunter of the heroic type.
** The sequel ''VideoGame/RedDeadRedemption'' John is pretty much a Government Bounty Hunter, who has to hunt down the rest of his old gang dead or alive, or he'll never see his family again.
*** Also allows the player to accept bounty hunting side-missions by collecting the Wanted Posters he finds. The player then tracks the bounty and has the choice of capturing them (for a bigger reward) or simply killing them. Also, committing crimes will create a bounty on the player himself, and bounty hunters will come after you hoping to collect.
* ''VideoGame/StarWarsBountyHunter'' features playing as Jango Fett. Guess what the game revolves around.
* ''VideoGame/StarWarsTheOldRepublic'' has an entire Bounty Hunter class, complete with its own story and companions, for the Imperial faction. You start off as a competitor in a Mandalorian Bounty Hunting competition, to hunting high-profile targets from an exclusive list and ultimately ending up as [[spoiler:the most wanted criminal of the Galactic Republic]].
** The Bounty Contract in-game events allow other classes to engage in this as well, capturing bounties dead or alive to earn rewards from the Bounty Hunter's Guild.
* The ''VideoGame/DarkForcesSaga'' features Kyle Katarn and Jan Ors, who are these at least in the general sense that ''Star Wars'' doesn't really distinguish between mercenaries, which the duo are actually labeled as, and bounty hunters; the main difference is that they do jobs for the Rebellion and later New Republic rather than the Empire or unaffiliated criminals like Jabba. Specifically, they're doing a job for someone else for the entirety of the original ''VideoGame/DarkForces'' (the opening level has them stealing the Death Star plans to [[Film/ANewHope deliver them to Leia]], then the rest of the game is a more involved mission to investigate a Dark Trooper project) and the first two levels of ''VideoGame/JediKnightIIJediOutcast'' (investigating transmissions coming from an Imperial outpost thought to have long since been abandoned, then the source of power crystals Kyle found samples of in that outpost).
* The Stranger of ''VideoGame/OddworldStrangersWrath'' starts out as this, capturing/killing enemies in order to earn Moolah (currency of Oddworld) for a life-saving operation. Later on, after [[spoiler:The Stranger is [[TomatoSurprise outed as a Steef]], a [[LastOfHisKind beast hunted to near extinction]]]], the townsfolk automatically turn against him and he spends the game helping the Grubbs (the Native American FantasyCounterpartCulture) retake their land from [[CorruptCorporateExecutive Sekto]].
* In ''VideoGame/PopfulMail'', Mail often goes after big-time criminals (the bigger the reward, the better), but never manages to ''catch'' any of them.
* Inverted by Wrex of ''Franchise/MassEffect,'' who describes himself as a mercenary, but his actual role is much more similar to that of a bounty hunter. The jobs of his that you see or he describes in-game usually involve tracking down and kidnapping or killing one person (Fist, Aleena, the unnamed volus, etc) at the behest of a private employer.
** He's also done bodyguarding and space piracy according to his stories, so he's pretty much an all-around hired gun. However, he found bodyguarding to be boring (but easy money, naturally) and prefers to work in smaller groups or alone, so he's arguably a Bounty Hunter foremost.
** The sequel plays it a little straighter while still being flexible in the form of Zaeed Massani. The guy is described as the best bounty hunter in the business. Even when Shepard first meets him, he's cornered a Batarian bounty. (As well as shooting him in the back of the knee when he tries to run.) That said, Zaeed also co-founded the Blue Suns mercenary corporation and has fought in many battles as a soldier for hire. Ultimately, Zaeed burns this trope's candle at both ends. The only difference being if the contract in question says "capture" rather than "kill", "secure", "breach", or other more strategic terms.
* B.B. Hood/Bulleta of ''VideoGame/{{Darkstalkers}}'' is a bounty hunter specializing in monsters (called a Darkhunter in the fluff). She very much falls under the "villain" category, being a greedy, sadistic, amoral AxCrazy EnfantTerrible PsychoForHire.
* Bounty hunters are recurring antagonists in the ''VideoGame/MegaManX'' series, with Dynamo in ''X5'' and ''X6'', Red Alert in ''X7'', and Spider in ''VideoGame/MegaManXCommandMission''.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Mercenaries}}'', the player characters (a trio of [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin mercenaries]]) are often dispatched to capture or kill selected targets with prices on their head. In fact, in the original game, the players' primary reason for being there was the massive bounty on the BigBad's head.
* In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXII'', one of the {{Sidequest}}s involved killing of various "marks" in order to get prizes.
* ''VideoGame/{{Freelancer}}'' has an entire faction of these, which the Discovery GameMod expands upon. You can take up bounty hunting side missions as well; they're similar to the assassination ones except you grab the target's escape pod after the battle.
* Hachimen from ''VideoGame/{{Sacrifice}}'' works entirely for the highest bidder. Presented due to him having an array of different spells, mostly early [[CorruptCorporateExecutive Pyro]] units, and later, [[MagnificentBastard Stratos]] units.
* The Regulators in ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 3}}'' are bounty killers who target evildoers and turn in their [[{{Fingore}} fingers]] for caps. Players with very good karma can join them, while evil players will be hunted by them. The Talon Company Mercs likewise are hired to hunt down players who do [[NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished too many good deeds]].
* In ''VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas'', the player can pursue bounties for [[AlwaysChaoticEvil Fiend]] leaders for the NCR, who will pay for their heads. The catch is that the player must leave the head intact and recognizable (IE no [[BoomHeadshot headshots]] or any attacks that [[LudicrousGibs gibs]][=/=]disintegrates them) or else the Major in charge of the bounties can't verify them and cannot pay you full price.
* Many {{MMORPG}}s have a large proportion of their {{Side Quest}}s involve collecting bounties on named monsters or [=NPCs=].
* ''Videogame/VampireTheMasqueradeBloodlines'' has a small tree of sidequests where the player takes the role of Bounty Hunter while working for a somewhat sleazy bail bondsman in Santa Monica. Unusually, part of the quest line is finding out what happened to the bondman's regular bounty hunter, and then [[spoiler:freeing him from the basement where his quarry's murderer is torturing him]].
* Although ''[[VideoGame/WingCommander Privateer]]'' has AI pilots referred to as bounty hunters (and the PlayerCharacter occasionally takes on jobs with the label), the actual task is never to actually capture them, just shoot them down.[[note]]On the rare occasions a bounty mission target ejects, they only show up as generic pilots, and once you land, they're just regular slaves to sell.[[/note]]
* In ''VideoGame/BlazBlue'', the [[AllThereInTheManual Teach Me Miss Lichi]] segments explain that "Vigilantes" are (despite the name) this. Criminals the [[TheEmpire NOL]] want to capture are given bounties which anyone can turn in (although it's noted that their bounties don't always tally with the threat the individual presents and they may or may not be of the "dead or alive" variety) and the NOL allows citizens to collect them (they even offer a service where they dispatch an agent to collect the bounty and freely teach otherwise restricted [[FunctionalMagic ar magus]] which can be used to bind criminals and drag them to the nearest NOL outpost).
* ''[[VideoGame/EscapeVelocity EV Nova]]'' has a Bounty Hunters' Guild that the player can join. Their missions mainly involve killing and capturing {{space pirate}}s. They start out working only in [[TheEmpire Federation]] territory, but the Guild storyline allows you to expand their operations into the [[ProudWarriorRaceGuy Auroran]] [[TheAlliance Empire]].
* In ''VideoGame/{{Borderlands 2}}'', Axton worked as one on Pandora in-between leaving the Dahl military and becoming a Vault Hunter.
* ''[[VideoGame/LegendOfLegaia Legaia II: Duel Saga]]'' features a Hunter's Guild which the player can access about halfway through the game. Though some of the requests are more reminiscent of {{Fetch Quest}}s, the majority present marks that the party must track down and eradicate.
* The protagonist of ''VideoGame/ThreeTheHardWay'' works as one.
* Gondar the Bounty Hunter in ''VideoGame/DefenseOfTheAncients'' is a rather ninja-ish hero who specializes in tracking the enemy heroes and assassinating them. Treating his targets as his bounties, his Ultimate lets him net an even bigger amount of gold in case he killed a tracked hero, which he shares with his nearby teammates if able.
* Miss Fortune in ''VideoGame/LeagueOfLegends'', by lore, is a bounty hunter, specifically she hunts pirates. It's her class/title name.
* The various Hunter organizations of ''VideoGame/{{Solatorobo}}'' are this in all but name. Though most of the jobs the guild offers are along the lines of {{Fetch Quest}}s or TwentyBearAsses.
* An upgrade in ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquerGenerals'' allows the GLA to make money whenever they kill an enemy.
* ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls''
** Hunting down dangerous criminals to collect the bounty on their heads is a common quest for the [[AdventureGuild Fighters Guild]], as seen repeatedly in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIDaggerfall Daggerfall]]'', ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]]'', and ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]''.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'':
*** As the Fighters Guild [[SupermanStaysOutOfGotham does not operate in Skyrim]] due to the presence of the Companions, the Companions fill this void instead.
*** The Jarls of the various holds in Skyrim will often put out bounties on threats to their citizenry, including bandits, giants, and even Dragons.
*** If ''you'' commit crimes, even if you aren't caught by the actual CityGuards, those you've committed crimes against may send Hired Thugs and even [[MurderInc Dark Brotherhood]] assassins after you.
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarII'' gives you two flavors of bounty hunter as party members. Rudolf Steiner hunts Biomonsters as a profession as revenge for the deaths of his wife and child. Anna Zirski is said to hunt ''people'', but it's never explored as a facet of her character.
* Tokyo Hunters in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV''. Functionally, Samurai who take quests from K are pretty much the same, though from a trained fighting force instead.
* ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAutoV'' has an entire questline dedicated to [[BloodKnight Tre]][[AxCrazy vor]] working as a bounty hunter. Notably, he has to work for a bail bondsman and gets more money for ''not'' killing his targets (which is asking a lot from Trevor).
* Abe Presley of ''VideoGame/{{Evolve}}''. Played differently than usual as he doesn't really care for bounty hunting, considering it something that you do because you don't have many other options. On the other hand, he does have a healthy respect for the money it can bring.
* ''VideoGame/DarkestDungeon'' features the Bounty Hunter class, a unit whose primarily uses are marking enemies for {{Armor-Piercing Attack}}s and for pulling units from the back to the front among others.
* ''Videogame/GranblueFantasy'' nods to this with the "Bounty" status effect, which can be stacked on an enemy to increase the chance of getting a chest with good loot from defeating them. The skills available to the player that increase the bounty level on an enemy are even outright called "Bounty Hunter".

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* ''Webcomic/TwiceBlessed'': The comic [[http://www.twiceblessedcomic.com/?webcomic_post=2 starts]] with a room full of bounty hunters who are out for Cade's head.
** It then follows up with close-ups of three of them: a pixie, a [[CigarChomper cigar]]-[[SmokingIsCool smoking]] kobold with a big gun, and a pair of drow twins. Any guesses on which bounty hunters from this group are going to be most relevant to the story?
*** [[ShoutOut Bossk]]
* ''Webcomic/TheCyantianChronicles'': Genoworks Exotica wants its creations back. This is their preferred method.
** Mercial, though she doesn't work for Genoworks Exotica.
* ''Webcomic/DreamCatcher'' Lunos' belief is that as a [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent werewolf demon]], this type of stuff is in his nature and is what he does best. Naturally, it's his job.
* Clark and Tonya from ''[[http://www.shapequest.net Shape Quest]]'' are bounty hunters.
* A Bounty Hunter picks up the girls' DistressCall in ''Webcomic/GirlsInSpace'' and tracks them back to Earth
* [[ThoseTwoBadGuys Ganji and Enor]] from ''[[Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick Order of the Stick]]''.
* The Ambis Empire in the comic ''WebComic/{{Jix}}'' has a lot of bounty hunters; however, the only two seen are Pratos (who is really named Aranis, Jix's cousin), and Maricax, both of whom hunted the main characters.
* Feral in ''Webcomic/{{Strays}}''.
* In ''Webcomic/{{Roza}}'', Esten appears to be this.
* ''Webcomic/{{Banished}}'': Luger, who wants to claim the bounty on Rak's head.
* 'Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'':
** Doyt (and later Doyt-Haban). When the crew rescues some hostages, he explains the way to turn a profit. Ransoming them back to their families is wrong, but selling them to interested governments is fine.
--->'''Tagon:''' That's actually a pretty fair idea, once you get used to the odd distinction.\\
'''[=DoytHaban=]:''' How is the distinction odd?\\
'''Tagon:''' It's ''not'' okay for us to sell a guy back to the people who love him, but it's ''just fine'' for us to sell him to a body politic that wants to ''incarcerate'' him or ''execute'' him?\\
'''[=DoytHaban=]:''' Bounty-hunting is like that.
** Arguably the Toughs as a whole, given that they have a standing payment for killing attorney drones.
* The title character of ''Webcomic/TheLegendOfLucy'' is a bounty hunting [[PigMan pig girl]], although multiple characters have pointed out her actions are more akin to that of a vigilante.
* ''Webcomic/{{Plume}}'' has the bounty hunter known only as the Hunter, who, true to more realistic depictions of this trope, does more than just killing for money, working as a private investigator as well.
* ''Webcomic/WinterMoon'' takes place in an MMORPG. Florence is an extremely powerful mage that has managed to piss off almost every important high-level player in the game. So he regularly has players trying to kill him to collect the rewards on his head.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* The web series ''WebVideo/{{Chapel}}'' has [[StealthPun Butch Sauft]], the man who originally caught Chapel. But [[PunchClockHero it wasn't personal]].
-->'''Butch:''' Sorry I caught you.\\
'''Chapel:''' Sorry I ''ran.''
* ''Roleplay/TheGunganCouncil'', being in the ''Franchise/StarWars'' universe, has had tons of bounty hunters. Kane E. Smart is one of the more prolific and dedicated bounty hunters flying around, having faked his death for months in order to get a mark.
* Elliot Bishop in ''Literature/ChronoHustle'' is a bounty hunter in the old west, in addition to working for the TRD.
* Mage-knights in ''Literature/VoidDomain'' are explicitly stated to work as bounty hunters on occasion. The mother of one of the main characters is a retired mage-knight.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* In the ''WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries'' episode "Showdown", the real hero of the story is Jonah Hex, a cynical [[TheWestern Wild West]] bounty hunter with a hideously scarred face and gruff manners that hide his heroism.
* And, in sharp contrast, we have the villainous Lockdown of ''WesternAnimation/TransformersAnimated'', who [[OrganTheft takes parts of his quarry]] [[CreepySouvenir as trophies]] before turning them over to his employer. PsychoForHire with a dash of creepiness to boot.
-->'''Lockdown:''' Some 'bots are in it for the glory, some for the adventure, some even actually believe in the "cause." Me, I'm in it for the upgrades.
* ''WesternAnimation/BountyHamster''. Marion the hamster and The Horse With No Name (a double spoof, on Creator/ClintEastwood's [[NoNameGiven Man With No Name]] along with the song by the band America).
* From ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'':
** In the first season, Zuko hires a female bounty hunter named June to track down the heroes. She proved to be [[EnsembleDarkhorse unexpectedly popular]], which lead to a couple more appearances as an ally during the series finale.
** Zuko also hires The Combustion Man in the third season. Though since he was only ordered to kill, makes him an assassin.
** While it's technically not their job, Xin Fu and Yu, a pair of professional Earthbenders, were also hired to capture Toph and return her to her parents (serving the role but never being called bounty hunters), but they had no experience bounty hunting. Xin Fu, however is willing to sell anyone out to the Fire Nation, because they pay more. This is one reason they were so unsuccessful at capturing and returning her. The other reason is that Toph Bei Fong is just too badass to be contained. [[ItMakesSenseInContext Not even by metal]].
* ''WesternAnimation/SamuraiJack'' has faced many bounty hunters due to a high reward on his head set by Aku; a good part of why Jack is such a badass is because ever since arriving in the future, his already considerable skills have been tested and improved upon by constant surprise attacks by seasoned bounty hunters. In one episode, Jack faced 6 highly-skilled bounty hunters all at once, and they'd even had a fair bit of lead time to plan out and prepare a multi-pronged trap. [[CurbStompBattle They went down easily in less than a minute]]. After it was over, Jack just kept on walking as if nothing had happened. Another episode revolves around an encounter with two of these on a train; it laters turns out the pair are a former married couple, and [[SouthernBelle the female hunter]] very nearly succeeded in capturing Jack.
* ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsTheCloneWars'' gives us Cad Bane. That particular season was actually prolifically advertised for the inclusion of lots of bounty hunters.
* Dale in ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'' becomes a bounty hunter after a one day class.
* ''WesternAnimation/SpongebobSquarepants: TheMovie'' introduced Dennis the bounty hunter, who was out to kill Spongebob on Plankton's orders. Although his method of murder was stomping people with a cartoony spiked boot, Dennis was a surprisingly menacing villain.
** He states he has other ways he could do it, but his employer specifically told him to kill them in that fashion. Makes sense considering the employer was Plankton, who gets stepped on... a lot.
* Skeletor hires two bounty hunters to capture He-man in ''WesternAnimation/HeManAndTheMastersOfTheUniverse2002''. If nothing else, they were a lot more competent than his usual minions.
* In an episode of ''WesternAnimation/AdventuresOfTheGummiBears'', [[BigBad Duke Igthorn]] hires the bounty hunter Flint Shrubwood, a CaptainErsatz of Creator/ClintEastwood's [[Film/DollarsTrilogy Man With No Name]]. He ended up turning on his client for welshing on his deal.
* Homer Simpson and Ned Flanders once became bounty hunters on ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons''.
* Nick Logan, the main character of ''WesternAnimation/RoswellConspiracies'' starts out as a bounty hunter. He gets pulled into the Alliance when one of his marks turns out to be a lycanthrope.
* Baba Ghanoush -- a parody of Boba Fett -- who appears in several episodes of ''WesternAnimation/{{Dogstar}}'' (and turns out to be Gemma's uncle).
* The ''WesternAnimation/WanderOverYonder'' episode "The Waste of Time" reveals that Sylvia was working as a bounty hunter when she first met Wander... in fact, he was her quarry at the time! We have yet to see exactly [[NoodleIncident how Sylvia went from]] [[HeelFaceTurn trying to turn Wander in for a reward to being his best friend and travel companion]].
* ''WesternAnimation/AdventuresOfTheGalaxyRangers'': Shane is accused of being this by his fellow Supertroopers, who went renegade while he stayed loyal to Earth. The truth is harsher; the only reason Earth ''didn't'' throw Shane in cryo or kill him was because of TakesOneToKillOne, and they wanted the others hunted down.
* In ''WesternAnimation/SpacePOP'', Geela hires a bounty hunter named Khang to capture the girls and retrieve the Ring of Grock.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Today, civilian bounty hunting is legally practiced only in the United States, and its former colony, the Philippines. Though it should be noted that modern bounty hunting is a very different practice than in the old days. In the United States a bounty hunter is usually under contract with a bail bondsman and can't work without their sanction. The US and the Philippines are the only countries which allow for corporations to make bail on behalf of criminals, which means that a) many more people in America can make bail, and thus b) more people in America skip bail than the police can handle on their own; also bail in America can get ludicrously expensive, which makes bounty hunting a lucrative career. Most states also require strict licensing and training for bounty hunters, and a few states ban bounty hunting entirely. And of course, "dead or alive" bounties are completely illegal. A bounty hunter who killed their quarry would have to face a lot of questions from the police and could easily find themselves blacklisted in the bail bondsman industry for it (especially since killing the bounty would mean the bail bondsmen wouldn't be getting their money back). As it is, unlike law enforcement they don't have quasi-immunity and can be much more easily sued or prosecuted for any excessive force against fugitives.
** Speaking of the Philippines, bounty hunting is starting to make a comeback in the middle of TheNewTens, especially after the election of President Rodrigo Duterte in 2016, and [[http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/05/20/philippine-mayor-offers-1000-bounty-for-killing-criminals-after/ it looks a lot more]] like the classic [[WantedPoster "dead or alive"]] style.
* Bounty hunters do exist somewhat like they are portrayed in fiction over in the Middle East; most of the detainees in Guantanamo Bay came from these guys.[[http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15361458/page/2/]] At least have been alleged to be innocent, rounded up due to {{mistaken identity}} or just false accusations by enemies that they are terrorists.
* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Domino_Harvey Domino Harvey]], whose real life story is significantly more unique than the cliche Hollywood turned her into.
* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dog_the_bounty_hunter Dog the Bounty Hunter]] is probably the most famous contemporary example, in no small part thanks to his [[Series/DogTheBountyHunter hit reality TV show]].
* A Bug Bounty Program is a type of bounty for programmers to deal with bugs and exploits, in which the Bug Bounty Hunters search for the bugs with their programming skills and resolve them for a reward.