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Calling the Old Man Out
Fire Lord Ozai: GET OUT! Get out of my sight right now if you know what's good for you!
Zuko: That's another thing. I'm not taking orders from you any more.
Ozai: You will obey me, or this defiant breath will be your last! (starts bearing down on Zuko)
Zuko: (draws swords) Think again! I am going to speak my mind... and you are going to listen.

Did Mom and/or Dad leave you without an explanation, only to pop up years later expecting hugs and kisses? Are even YOU tired of listening to your Freudian Excuse? Is endlessly sucking up to the "Well Done, Son" Guy for a tiny crumb of respect really starting to get on your nerves?

Right. Time to take a page from Oedipus Rex and let your parental figure know how you REALLY feel.

It's time to Call The Old Man Out. Or the Old Woman, if it's your mother you have issues with. Time for a real shout-down with that dysfunctional parental figure. Possibly even a beat down, if you really get into it. (We suggest you try not to go any farther than that; killing a parent, even one who arguably deserves it, tends to put you in the villain camp by default. Even Oedipus got nailed for it eventually, remember. And he didn't even KNOW the man was his father.)

You see this trope whenever a child figure (who is most often actually fully adult in age, but in rare cases may still be a child or teenager) goes into full-on confrontational mode with a parent figure they feel has severely wronged them. "Child" and "parent" can be fairly loose here — it's the power relationship that's key, not the genetics. Although the confrontation can be quite longwinded as it plays out, the actual semantic content usually boils down to "Daddy, you SUCK!" Or, less often but still seen, Mommy. For some reason, father figures are far more often targeted for this, due to the general belief that most women tend to be better parental figures than fathers. Or maybe it's just not considered nice to yell at Mom. This can be a double whammy if the "parent" is also The Caretaker, since they're essentially the child's lifeline and are wronging them.

Also, for this trope to come into play, the parental figure must actually have transgressed, or the child figure must have good reason to believe the transgression has happened. If the child figure is not at least somewhat justified in their accusations, it's not Calling The Old Man Out — it's just throwing a temper tantrum.

Bonus points are awarded if the child is able to (correctly) point out that they have managed not to repeat the parental mistakes with their own offspring. Might be subverted if they have tragically repeated exactly the same mistakes with their own offspring. Of course, the parent may be happy either way.

Sometimes, the writer may not want the child figure to be the one actually doing the calling out. Maybe they want to keep the child figure Really Nice, so nice they won't even yell at an abusive parent. Maybe they want to show that the child figure is still so thoroughly whipped by the abusive parent that they are still incapable of facing them. Maybe the child is hoping that Daddy may still turn out to be good after all, despite the abuse, and is therefore holding back on giving him the what-for. Maybe they feel that the accusation will seem less whiny if an outsider delivers it, thereby validating the abuse in the eyes of a third person. In such a case, someone who loves the child figure may step in and deliver the calling out vicariously — "How dare you treat your child like that, you monster!" Spouses, boyfriends/girlfriends, aunts/uncles, mentors, best friends, or possibly even older siblings may step in and take on this job for someone unwilling or unable to do it for themselves.

The actual results of Calling The Old Man Out can vary widely. Clearing the air might be a good thing, and result in some kind of parent-child reconciliation. (A common variant is when the parent can provide some kind of reasonable explanation for why bad things were allowed to happen that the child was not previously aware of.) It might result in a permanent break between parent and child. It might even provide a powerful catharsis for the child figure, allowing Character Development to take place through resolving that Freudian Excuse, Parental Abandonment issue, or "Well Done, Son" Guy obsession the character has been carrying around most of his or her life. If the parent being called out is a villain, it might result in that parent having a breakdown (if the parent hasn't had one already) and going on the warpath against the child. In extreme cases, the parent, the child, or both, might end up dead. Or maybe nothing at all changes.

Just out of fairness, it should be mentioned that good old Oedipus himself is not truly an example of this trope, as he did not know he was killing his father when it happened, and was not intentionally doing it as revenge for his father spiking his feet and leaving him to die on a hillside as a baby; Oedipus killed the old man for cutting him off in traffic.

Compare Rage Against the Mentor. Also see I Hate You, Vampire Dad. As noted, Abusive Parents will likely be on the receiving end, putting this on the far side of the Sliding Scale of Parent-Shaming in Fiction. Often a subtrope of "The Reason You Suck" Speech.


Examples:

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    Anime and Manga 
  • Bleach: Uryuu walked out on his father Ryuuken by the age of 15 due to his father's intolerance of the family's Quincy heritage while Ichigo has received a very physically aggressive upbringing from his father Isshin. When the two fathers discuss their sons' latest quest, they call each other out on their bad parenting. The scene makes it clear they've been forced by circumstances into parenting roles they loathe but seem to feel is necessary.
  • In Higurashi No Naku Koro Ni Kai, Satoko Houjou pulls off one of these during Minagoroshi-hen, despite being terrified of the old man in question. It took all of Keiichi's fate-crushing oratory skills and all of Hinamizawa backing her up, but Satoko finds the courage to oppose her abusive uncle and ask for the help she so desperately needs. Doubles as one of the series' biggest Crowning Moments of Awesome, to boot.
    • Umineko no Naku Koro ni has a rather horrific one of these in its fourth arc. Maria, as a full-fledged witch, finally gets revenge on her abusive mother, Rosa. In between each round of bringing her back from the dead and killing her again in inventively horrible ways, the two of them are yelling about how much they hate each other and accusing each other of ruining their lives.
  • In UFO Robo Grendizer (one of the Mazinger Z sequels), Rubina, daughter of Big Bad King Vega, calls her father out TWICE in the same episode (and it was quite awesome): The first time she -rightly- accused him from lying to her -about her fiancé's fate-, and bluntly states finding out that lie had turned her life upside down. And later she told him his wars to conquer other planets were stupid and they just should find another world to settle on.
  • Despite REALLY deserving it, Gendo Ikari never got Called Out by his son Shinji in Neon Genesis Evangelion, although his wife's ghost did confront him about his behavior close to the end and his last words before dying were "I'm sorry, Shinji". But by then, everyone had a few words for him, including other dead people.
    • The manga version, on the other hand, has Shinji wordlessly lunge and punch at Gendo — but is (unfortunately) stopped by Kaji holding him back. The audience does get to savor Gendo's look of complete shock, however, as the punch was less than an inch from connecting with his nose.
      • He does land a punch on old Gendo 20 issues later. But Gendo verbally owns Shinji over the next few pages.
    • Shinji calls the old man out spectacularly in Rebuild of Evangelion by thrashing NERV HQ after the Dummy Plug that Gendou ordered activated nearly kills Asuka. Repercussions come after, but Shinji didn't regret his actions, not after that.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist, Edward Elric berserks all over his runaway father, Hohenheim, going so far as to punch him with his automail arm. They sort of get reconciled later.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! GX: Judai first calls Manjyome's older brothers on the way they mistreat and disrespect him, and Manjyome later finally gives them what they have coming in a duel.
  • Fate Testarossa in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, after years of abuse by her mother Mad Scientist Precia, subverts this when instead of calling her mother out, she tries to redeem her to the very end. Instead, Nanoha and Lindy Harlaown are the ones to call her out. Psycho lady is so far gone that she just shakes their insults off and commits suicide with the jar containing the dead body of little Alicia, the daughter Fate was supposed to replace.
  • Although Ranma and Genma from Ranma ½ routinely fight as part of both their training routine and their personal interaction, the former really let the latter have it when he recalled that his father regularly bullied him for food... merely because Ranma was still comparatively weaker and couldn't stop the then-older, stronger martial artist from taking his meal. And the incidents with the Cat Fist or the very fact that Ranma turns into a woman because of him...
    • In a rather surprising instance, Kasumi, of all people, gets angry enough to yell at Genma and demand explanations for why he took Ranma to a place as dangerous as Jusenkyo.
    • In the anime, an exclusive episode has Tatewaki Kuno call out his father, when the latter attempts to return to their estate and retake command after having abandoned them to their own devices for at least three years. Between this and the downright abusive way that his father treated him early in life, Kuno refuses to allow this to happen, actually challenging his father to a fight. Kuno technically wins the fight, but the principal decieves him and kicks him off the roof when Kuno has him almost beaten. While this doesn't do anything serious to Kuno, the principal declares that he will not return to the estate and goes back to Furinkan High, possibly afraid after having realised that his son A: truly hates him, and B: is quite capable of kicking his ass. The two do seem to get on a little better afterward, but they're still a dysfunctional family to the core.
      • Also revived in the anime, when the Principal goes back home to attend Kodachi's school conferences instead of Kuno, whos had to raise his little sister himself ever since Daddy left. Kuno, no matter how he can't get along with Kodachi and how she actually is a Daddy's Girl, refuses to just take it and again challenges his dad. Again, Kuno wins.
    • Noticeable in how these two episodes are among the very few times when Kuno, nornally a Jerk Ass Small Name, Big Ego who's hated even by the plot, comes out favorably. Very much.
  • In Digimon Savers, Touma calls his father Franz out for never standing up to his grandmother for him, for further endangering his half-sister Relena's life, and for being manipulated by the Manipulative Bastard Kurata.
  • Ryuunosuke in Urusei Yatsura does this to her father on a regular basis. Considering that he's raised her all her life as a boy and goes to great lengths to keep her away from anything feminine, this is somewhat understandable.
  • Code Geass: The whole point of Lelouch's rebellion is to call his Social Darwinist Old Man The Emperor out. And after he fails epically at the first attempt, he starts it all over again in the second season.
    • However, when he does finally get to call out the Emperor (and his own mother!) in person, it becomes one of his many moments of pure awesome.
      • Lelouch does it before the series even starts. Unfortunately, that tells you exactly how it went down: He gets abandoned in a war zone.
    • Also, Lelouch's Forgotten Friend, New Foe Suzaku tries to do that to his dad, Japanese Premier Genbu Kururugi, when Genbu decides he'd rather sacrifice the whole of Japan than surrender. It horribly backfires as young Suzaku kills his father in the process, which allows Britannia to invade the country. Suzaku himself is so traumatised that, despite never being formally punished, ends up with Trauma-Induced Amnesia and attempts to become The Atoner... with even worse results.
      • In the Suzaku of the Counterattack manga, Genbu does the opposite; he schemes with the Emperor to eliminate the remaining Japanese officials who supported continuing the war. Suzaku overhears it and ends up killing his father. In the Knightmare of Nunnally adaptation, this is averted. C.C. kills Genbu when he's about to kill Lelouch.
  • Near the end of Princess Tutu, Rue rebels against the Raven—who had raised her after he kidnapped her as a child—by saving Mytho from him and shouting at him "You're Not My Father!" Later, Mytho and Rue deliver the final blow to the Raven together.
  • A regular occurrence between Hachimaki and Goro Hoshino in Planetes, because the latter abandoned his family on Earth to pursue his career as an astronaut. Not that it actually works, since Hachi shares Goro's all-consuming passion for space.
  • In Narutaru, Akira Sakura eventually calls out her father, who is heavily implied to have sexually abused her when she was younger, by stabbing him to death. This is a Shrinking Violet we're talking about here, by the way.
  • Bunny Drop's Daikichi calls out his family after each and every one of them are either unable or unwilling to take in his grandfather's illegitimate daughter Rin (age 6) by telling them that she'll grow into a much better adult than any of them, then asking Rin if she wants to come live with him.
    • One of the subplots is also finding out where Rin's mother Masako has gone and call her out on her abandonment of the little girl.
  • In chapter 440 of Naruto, Naruto calls out his father Minato Namikaze (quite physically at first), the 4th Hokage, (or the spirit of the 4th, it's not really clear) on his decision to seal the Nine-tails in Naruto, which led to his early years of loneliness and becoming a target of Akatsuki. Minato goes on to explain his reasons (which are pretty good, by the way), but he does acknowledge that he caused Naruto a great deal of pain and that he probably doesn't have a right to act like a father anymore.
    • Considerably earlier, we have his chewing out and calling out Tsunade as a drunken coward unworthy of the title of Hokage after Sarutobi dies. As the whole reason he and Jiraiya found her was that she was supposed to be his new boss, this would have to count. Admittedly, she does smack him around in the fight, but he makes her go beyond her boast of doing it with but a single finger. Naruto's a master of taking every victory he can.
    • As of episode 546, it's Gaara's turn to call out his abusive father (whose treatment of his son was enough to get an entry on the Archnemesis Dad page), recently revived via Edo-Tensei. In that case, they both fight and Gaara ultimately wins, the former Kazekage fully admits to being an awful parent, to the point of shedding tears before being re-sealed.
  • In Oishinbo the main character and his father are rivals and the relationship is not pretty.
  • Full Metal Panic!. Seina, the leader of the A12 terrorist group, spares Andrei Kalinin because he reminds her of her own surrogate father, a former mercenary who trained the group of delinquent youths in survival and warfare, but who failed to prepare them to live in a Japan at peace. Her dying words as she's cradled in Kalinin's arms are "You speak like you know everything. I hate you. You make me sick." It's obvious who she's really referring to.
  • The second major arc in Fairy Tail, dealing with the rival guild Phantom, was set in motion by Lucy's father. Lucy doesn't get to do much during this arc and instead spends most of the time being depressed about how she's causing them problems. After the end of the arc, she decides to go home... whereupon she tells him to stop interfering with her life and her new family or they're going to declare war on him.
  • In Fushigi Yuugi (especially the manga version), Miaka Yuuki's very strict single mother is screaming at her for "seeing a guy" instead of studying for high-school entrance exams (after reading and misinterpreting Miaka's diary.) In the manga, Miaka screams back at Yuuki-san about how she can't possibly pass the exams despite studying hard, and that she's tired of playing her mother's agenda to get her praise, and that it's not fair of her mom to criticize her for being interested in a guy Tamahome when her mother is seeing someone herself. Yuuki-san responds with an Armor-Piercing Slap, causing Miaka to run away and go inside the Book. When she return to Tokyo after the first part of her adventures, after some tense moment her mom apologizes to her.
  • In the second part of Kaleido Star, Rosetta Passel wants to join the Kaleido Stage but her Stage Mom won't let her. She first runs away from home and hides in Sora's dorm room, then Mrs. Passel comes searching for her and she has to confront her mother on how she wants to start taking control of her own life and decide what she wants to do. It ultimately works and Rosetta is allowed to stay at the Stage.
  • Subverted in an early episode of Pokémon. Flint presents himself upon his son Brock after having abandoned him and his nine siblings some time ago, and tells him he's going to take care of them again. Brock approaches Flint while he braces himself, preparing for the worst, when Brock gives him...a needle and cloth. Brock then proceeds to list all the tasks his father has to do daily to care for the children, while Flint struggles to take notes of them all. Afterward, Brock is free to leave with Ash and Misty.
    • Not so much subversion as letting the facts slam Flint for him..
  • In Men's Love, after years of working for his father doing everything he's been told to, Daigo finally stands up to him with regards to an Arranged Marriage and keeping him from going back to Japan. With a conveniently timed threat from another CEO about Daigo's father threatening his employee (Daigo's lover), it works pretty well.
  • In One Piece, one of Whitebeard's allies Squardo stabs Whitebeard and angrily calls him out for selling out his allies to the Marines, which was a lie that Akainu made up. His bitter resentment towards Ace's father (who had eliminated his crew, leaving him the sole survivor) and discovering just who Ace's father was also led to the calling out.
    • In Chapter 620 of the manga, Sanji angrily confronts Jinbe over the fact that he (Jinbe) was responsible for letting Arlong run loose in East Blue, which led to Nami's Dark and Troubled Past. Jinbe doesn't try to deny it, and apologizes for Nami's anguish even as he reveals the series of incidents that led up to Arlong's actions.
  • Horribly and massively subverted in Soul Eater. Medusa starts treating Crona kindly after s/he kills Tsar. Crona is so shocked that s/he kills Medusa brutally, saying that his/her abusive mother wouldn't treat him/her so kindly ever. But actually, it was a Thanatos Gambit from Medusa, who by making him/her throw away the last one s/he relayed on by killing her (Medusa), Crona completed the whole Black Blood process, thus making Crona crazier than ever. Just like Medusa wanted. Hoo. Lee. Sheeeeeet.
  • Kaoru of Nana to Kaoru does this twice for Nana. First he barges into a police box and yells down a phone at her police chief mother to come home and take care of her sick daughter. Then, because Nana is The Ace, everyone at school relies upon Nana to do their activities - so much so they go round to her house when she isn't answering her phone. Going over to Kaoru's house, Kaoru chews everyone present out for not taking care of their own business, even the teacher. The fact that he's hiding a Nana in full bondage gear underneath his sheets while pretending to watch porn is almost beside the point.
  • It happens twice in Bakuman。
    • When Takagi's father gets fired, his mother goes becomes an Education Mama, telling him to "avenge" his father by succeeding. He angrily yells "I'm not your puppet, Mom! I'll live my life the way I want to!". As a result, she became an Open Minded Parent who did not oppose his going into manga.
    • Shun Shiratori, one of the main characters' assistants, has to deal with a mother who wants him to either go to work for his father's company or go to art school. Faced with this decision on the eve of his manga series being launched, he leaves home and lives on his own, but she tracks him down. She tries to remind him of everything she did for him, but he points out that she only cares for the Shiratori family's reputation. With his father and older sister supporting his career, she's forced to yield.
  • In Girls und Panzer, so far Miho has not called out her mother Shiho on her cold personality and insistence on upholding the "victory at all costs" ideology of the family tankery school to the point of planning to disown her for being an embarrassment. In the "Little Army" prequel manga, though, when Miho notices her older sister Maho acting cold and distant when the truth about her shooting an enemy flag tank that was rescuing one of her teammates comes to light, Miho summons the nerve to ask Shiho whether it was necessary to do so. Shiho shrugs it off as a "foolish question", but Maho, noticing that Miho must have been desperate, goes to Miho afterward to apologize and urge her to follow her own path.
  • Nicely subverted in Sakura Gari. Souma starts to call his father out loudly for his Loving a Shadow obsession with his Missing Mom Abigail... but what works is to kindly speak to him and tell him that Abigail has forgiven him.
  • Ian does this a couple times in A Cruel God Reigns, although it is long after Greg has died and after Jeremy finally confesses what Greg did to him.
    Ian: Have you never cried for longing? Why did you do such a thing to Jeremy? Lilia, whom you loved, Lilia, who hanged herself in front of you- How could you laugh while she killed herself?
  • In Gundam SEED Athrun does this to his dad Patrick. Totally justified, considering that his father is becoming increasing unstable and trying to kill all the Naturals . Athrun gets shot for his troubles , and is unable to stop him.
  • In the final episode of Kotoura-san, Haruka calls out her mother Kumiko on her treatment. After having enough of her insults, not to say the Kumiko had caused a very long-term breakage of Haruka by disowning her. Haruka even assaults Kumiko with a pillow.
  • The entire plot of Baki the Grappler is Baki's quest to acquire enough Charles Atlas Superpower to do this to his insane and abusive, super-strong killing machine of a father, Yujiro, and survive. Sadly, he never really thinks of giving the same treatment to his equally insane mother, who treats him even worse than his father does because Baki isn't as strong as Yujiro.
  • In Detective Conan, the "Small Client" case is about Conan, Ran and Kogoro helping Child Prodigy Kazuki Kinukawa to find his long-lost mother who abandoned him. Kazuki wants to call his mom out on that and warn her that he won't let her have access to the money he's making as a child star. What Kazuki actually wants is to regain contact with her, as she used to write him unsigned postcards. He does so once his mom's identity is confirmed and she's cleared off from a murder charge.
  • Subverted with Allen and Leon Schezar in Escaflowne. Allen badly wants to call Leon out for having abandoned his mother to pursue his investigations on the Draconians, which alongside the disappearance of his younger sister Serena contributed to her Death by Despair years ago. When he finally gets the chance to do it... he does that to Leon's spirit. And Leon's soul explains that he never abandoned the family... but he actually was murdered by the Zaibach Empire to both silence him and steal the information he had gathered about the Draconians before he could come back home. (And Mrs. Schezar herself knew that Leon had died.) With this knowledge, Allen manages to make peace with his father and himself.
  • My Bride Is a Mermaid: A minor example; when Sun discovers that her father arranged for Shark Fujishiro to attack Nagasumi at the Obon festival, she confronts him and demands that he apologize to Nagasumi, remarking that she "can't respect a father who won't even act like a man."
  • In one chapter of With The Light, Masato's mother, Takako, while well intentioned, can't seem to accept Hikaru for who he is, especially when Kanon gets older and the differences between the siblings become more apparent. When she suggests taking custody of Kanon and sending her to a special private school, Masato is very appalled by the idea and awesomely tells her to stay out of his family business.
  • Elfen Lied: Upon finally meeting her father Kurama in person, Mariko is heartbroken when he pulls a gun on her and tearfully recounts how often she hoped they'd meet, demanding how he could do this to her. Discovering that he had treated Nana as his own daughter while she was locked in confinement with barely any human contact only pisses Mariko off even more.

    Comic Books 
  • Invincible calls his father out for lying to him and for the whole "world domination" bit. They eventually come to blows and they wreck a few continents in the ensuing, bloody brawl. It later turns out that said Calling Out ended up in the old man's Heel-Face Turn.
  • This is the entire driving motivation for Jesse Custer in Preacher, except instead of calling out his father, he wants to call out the Father of all Creation.
    • It's true that the overall Rage Against the Heavens plot of Preacher fits this trope, but long before the end of the series there's another example of it. Jesse had a great, happy childhood until he was around six or maybe even younger, when Jesse's father was killed in front of his eyes by Jesse's uncle Jody. Jody raised Jesse brutally for the rest of his childhood, also taking Jesse's mother aside to shoot her and using horrific child abuse. All this is revealed in the third or fourth story arc of the series, and by the end of it Jesse has finally killed Jody and everyone else on that side of the family responsible for his misery.
  • X-Men: Scott Summers' father Christopher aka Corsair was abducted by aliens when he and his brother were fairly young; when Dad showed up many years later, Scott vented his displeasure that a) he hadn't bothered to come back and look for them earlier, despite having plenty of opportunity, and b) he'd become a ruthless space pirate in the interim. The animated series used a similar storyline, with even more shouting on Scott's part.
    • Any time Quicksilver and Magneto appear in a book together, Quicksilver issues one of these, since his dad recruited him into a terrorist supervillain team and all. Magneto actually tends to take it in stride because he knows he was a terrible father (and, frankly, doesn't seem to care that much about Quicksilver's opinion), sometimes offering a token "I was trying to toughen you up" defense.
    • Gambit delivers one to Wolverine on X-23's behalf in her solo series, telling him off for allowing the reforming and emotionally damaged Tyke Bomb to participate on X-Force, when she really needed someone to help her cope with the things that she'd been made to do, rather than be allowed to do them all over again.
  • In Astonishing X-Men Cyclops "fires" Professor X after he finds out that Xavier knew the whole time that the Danger Room had become sentient, and that he continued to use her (and keep the secret to himself).
  • Happens with distressing and perfectly typical regularity to Batman. The ones doing the calling out tend to be Nightwing and Oracle — the oldest son and the not-quite-daughter with the most equal standing with Batman. Oracle criticizes him openly a lot more than Nightwing does, whereas Nightwing's are more violent. Stephanie Brown unleashes on Batman in the Road Home for all the manipulation crap she's been through. Jason Todd has called him out on his moral selfishness.
    • Now that Batman has an actual son, Damian, it happens with a good deal of regularity with him too. It helps that Damian's mother, Talia, is the the heir of one of Batman's arch-nemeses, so no matter what the kid does, one or the other of his parents it going to give him grief about it.
  • In the Spider-Man story "American Son" Harry Osborn finally does this to his father Norman Osborn (aka Green Goblin, aka Iron Patriot, aka Worst Father in Comics).
  • Rose Wilson aka Ravager does this to her father Deathstroke every time they meet. She never really got over the whole " injecting me with Psycho Serum and shoving a piece of radioactive Kryptonite into my eye socket" thing that Deathstroke pulled the last time she trusted him. That, and he's an amoral and ruthless mercenary who inevitably ruins the people close to him. In Blackest Night, after circumstances force them to fight side by side again, Rose calls him out one last time. While Rose acknowledges that part of her will always love him because he is her father (and only for that reason), she never wants to see him again. Rose also swears that if Slade tries to track down Rose's Missing Mom she will kill him.
  • Captain Cold, one of The Flash's staunchest foes, had a violent confrontation with his father after the old man had been abducted by the New Rogues. To teach everybody a lesson, Cold and his team searched for the impostors, trouncing each with their own weapons until Cold found his father in a meat locker. He proceeded to call him out for every indignity he had ever visited upon the family. The old man, clearly not impressed, shot back with his own opinions on how weak Cold and his mother were for not taking it. Cold, furious but unable to kill him, asked fellow Rogue Heat Wave to incinerate him.
  • In Viz, this happens with a lot of characters. Spoilt Bastard is constantly insulting his mother in order to get what he wants. Biffa Bacon often insults his parents and gets beaten up by them. In The Modern Parents, Tarquin is always insulting his parents because of their hypocritical beliefs.
  • In The Incredible Hulk #319, General Ross comes in to stop the wedding between Bruce Banner and Betty Ross. After he accidentally shoots Rick Jones, Betty calls him a stupid, miserable, interfering, old fool. And that's not all she also calls him out for being less of a parent and more of a strict, tyrannic bully and that the real reason why Ross didn't like Bruce (even before Bruce became the hulk)was because Bruce was kind and supportive to Betty than her own father. Also Betty gave her father an awesome ultimatum, if he really wants keep Betty away from Bruce, then he has to kill her. Of course he doesn't do it and instead breaks down emotionally while Bruce and Betty finally get married.

    Fanfiction 
  • Langxue does this to Iroh in the Avatar: The Last Airbender fanfic Embers, in proxy for Zuko, over how Iroh's well-intentioned but ultimately misinformed actions are just causing more and more problems for Zuko.
    • Unfortunately for Iroh, he doesn't take it to heart, and the results are an implicit disowning by Zuko in chapter 85.
      • In chapter 88, Aang does this to the whole White Lotus, calling them out on various inefficiencies of theirs — Bumi's stupid tests that accomplished nothing when he could have directly helped Aang by being straightforward, Pakku over his refusal to train Katara (something that came back to bite them both in the fanfic), Iroh refusing to trust that his nephew's trust of Iroh could have led to Zuko making a Heel-Face Turn if Iroh had just been honest about why Zuko's loyalty to Ozai is misplaced...
  • Past Sins has a heartwrenching scene that plays with this trope...
  • In Nine Months, April does this to her mother, Artemis.
  • The Treasure Planet fanfiction "Picking Up the Pieces", Jim pulls an excellent one of these on his Disappeared Dad, with whom he briefly and bitterly reunites through a chance encounter. Summing it up, he says "I wanted your love but you never did a thing for Mom and I; and I found out I didn't need it to be awesome, and it's because of that I'm graduating from the most high-class academy in the galaxy. And it's after all this when you want to be my father again. We don't need you anymore, so screw you, in-name-only Dad." Wow.
  • Naruto fan fictions often have a habit of calling out Naruto's father on sealing the Kyuubi into him, Naruto's mother depending on if they see her as alive or dead, and Naruto's erstwhile godfather, Jiraiya, who failed to carry out his duties as guardian for 12 years. Results vary from heartfelt reunions to permanent shattering of familial bonds depending on the author's inclination.
    • Case in point Naruto: Asunder except to BOTH parents (the fourth was in a form of stasis until his spirit was returned to his body. Kushina was forcefully sent back to Whirlpool to make it a Plan B safe haven if Konoha gets trashed.). Naruto, to his credit, says he understands fully WHY they sealed the Kyuubi in him but while they (Minato and Kushina) try to justify their actions Naruto points out that A) His mom SHOULD HAVE fought harder to stay with Naruto B) Thanks to their excellent parenting, he doesn't understand the concept of love in any form C) His life was shit because of what they did. Naruto even questions why the 4th didn't let the 3rd seal the Kyuubi, only for the 4th to say it was his burden to bear. Naruto FLIPS, calls bullshit and says the 3rd would've been happy to save the village. Naruto ends off saying that they shouldn't have had him if they were going to give him up and "It doesn't matter if you're back. I made it fine without you and still don't need you. Don't bother me again.". Even at the end of the story Naruto never forgives them but extends a "I don't completely hate your guts" gesture.
    • These days the Fourth gets the brunt of the blame, since it has been revealed that regardless of whatever happened, Kushina wouldn't have survived the tenth of October. Even then, since the sealing was an impromptu instead of prepped, like most fics have speculated the sealing was, the blame is considerably lessened, since it's clear that Minato didn't really have much of a choice in the matter. The fact that Kurama would eventually be allowed roam around again and cause havoc wherever he went (especially considering that he hadn't had his Heel-Face Turn yet), plus being free pickings for whoever caused the attack in the first place was too much of risk for them to do anything else.
  • This occurs in the KaBlam! fic Goodbye June. June's dad reveals that he's been fired from his new job for stealing money (in order to take her to fun places that he wouldn't be able to afford otherwise), and she snaps and chews him out for moving them to New York just to go and get himself in trouble. Sure, they make up later, but it's still quite an outburst.
  • There are a few Dragon Ball Z fics that had Gohan calling out his father for constantly leaving. Like No More Forgiveness by The Masked Otaku.
  • Averted in a CMOH for DC Nation. Connor Hawke discovers the pictures and birth announcement that proved Ollie knew about him. He's not exactly pleased about the knowledge that Ollie had never made effort to find him, and while Ollie braces for the chewing out...
    Connor: If I'd found this when I was a boy at the ashram, I would never have partnered up with you. If I had found this when I was the only Green Arrow, then I would have been VERY angry. But, now? ... Because of those things, I've had a chance to know you, to follow in your footsteps, to be the son of a good man. Because I didn't know, and because of those things I didn't trust, I have what I always wanted.
  • Almost every Evangelion fanfiction where Shinji has a spine.
    • The Second Try gives us several examples. Even more awesome because Shinji is a great father in his own right.
      Shinji: You know, [...] I thought I might be able to understand you better by now. But actually I understand you even less than before. How... [...] How can anyone really want to send his own child away?
      Gendo: I have no reason to explain myself if you are already aware that you cannot understand.
      Shinji: No, maybe not. You'd just blame everything on the pain of losing her anyway. Do you really think you're the only one who ever felt like that? You're not the only one who lost a loved one! [...] But unlike most, you didn't hold dear what was left of her. Instead of using it to remember the love she gave, you just saw it as reminder of her loss. So you just threw it all away, because the very existence hurt you.
  • The My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fancomic "Perfect Harmoneigh" (which can be found here on Deviantart). Octavia brings her girlfriend to a party her overbearing mother is throwing in order to find her a husband. Things are going badly, and then mum demands to know "Why don't you want to be happy?!" and it. Is. ON.
  • Subverted in The Basalt City Chronicles. In Daniel Clydesdale's backstory, he was utterly different from his father and ran away from home at 13 because Theodore (the father) wanted Dan to be part of the Clydesdale political legacy, while Dan was always itching for a fight. When they meet up again, Daniel's in Juvie. When he hears his father has come to visit, the kid's ready to let loose—but Theodore unwittingly yanks the rug out from under Daniel by begging for forgiveness and calling himself out.
  • Ember does this to Terrador in the Spyro Madness Saga. After Terrador completely destroys her life, up to and including kidnapping her before she even sees her children, Ember has a chance to kill him, which everyone says she should. Instead, Ember gives him a brutal "The Reason You Suck" Speech and allows the authorities to deal with him.
  • In the Katawa Shoujo fic Lilly Epilogue (Good Ending): Family Matters, Akira reminds her father that he had left her and Lilly to fend for themselves in Japan when he and their mother had moved to Scotland, in response to him trying to persuade Lilly to return to Scotland, resulting in an argument. After a little while, even Lilly gets in on it, as she is infuriated by her father insulting Hisao and Hanako, and at the peak of her anger, yells "YOU HARDLY RAISED ME AT ALL, YOU BASTARD!!" before ordering him out of her apartment. She later reconciles with him, though.
  • The Immortal Game: When Rarity is finally confronted by her father, Esteem, he offers her a chance to join him and live like royalty in the new Social Darwinist society he and Titan are creating. Rarity not only refuses, she calls him out on all the terrible things he's done — including but not limited to putting her through Training from Hell as a child, killing her mother, and being the one who let Titan out of his can in the first place. She tops this with completely disowning him and swearing to defeat him and his master.
  • In White Devil of the Moon, Nanoha, who in this story is the reincarnation of Princess Serenity, calls out Queen Serenity for her lax attention in raising Princess Serenity, both as a mother and as a queen, saying that if she had prepared her for her duties better and not let her sneak away to Earth so much, Serenity might not have committed suicide upon Endymion's death. She also points out that there were several other possible negative outcomes to Serenity and Endymion's relationship, which Serenity did not foresee due to not being raised well.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! Forever, which is set several years after the canon series, has this happen with Zane Truesdale, who by this time has two children of his own but has failed to be a proper parent to either of them, leading to his son becoming The Resenter and his daughter being a Shrinking Violet. Zane gets two callings-out for it—one by Alexis for his failure to set a better example for the two children, and the other by his son for making him keep quiet for several years about the fact that their mother died while pregnant with the daughter and burying his own grief for the sake of his sister, who he hates because of that incident.
  • A Growing Affection: Hinata to Hiashi, after he tries to come between her and Naruto.
    Hinata: Lord Hiashi. Your actions today were shameful. To go to the Hokage with a personal matter, and attack a fellow ninja… You are fortunate Naruto is not holding you accountable for the assault. Please do not disgrace our family in this manner again. Do not make me choose between you and Naruto. You will not like the results.
  • Subverted in The Legend of Link: Lucky Number 13. Link's father killed Link's mother and nearly Link himself, just for being born, thus causing Link to grow up as a Hylian instead of a god. The reason it's subverted is because Link doesn't take it personally; he's never known either of his parents, so to him, his father's just another monster that needs killing.
  • A fan contribution to Hivefled has Feferi calling out her Abusive Parents in song.
  • TheMightyOz's still in progress Nine Lives One Love gives a view of human Meulin and her painful relationship with her parents. In a few chapters, she inwardly states how awful her parents are for leaving her and her little sister, in this case Nepeta, alone for years without a word. Seeing as they are now both dead for unknown reasons, Meulin never got the chance to actually say anything to their face.
  • Queen Of All Oni: Jade has her father abducted so that she can chew him out for all the years of Parental Neglect she suffered. And then she disowns him.
  • Justice League of Equestria:
    • Mare of Steel: When Thunderlane's father Steel Wing tries convince him of his paranoid delusions about Supermare (Thunderlane's Love Interest), Thunderlane brings up how he's always been a lousy father, then throws him out of the house.
    • Princess of Themyscira: Diana gives a more subdued one of these to her mother Hippolyta for putting her personal feelings over the will of the gods.
  • In the Rise of the Guardians fic Guardian of Light, the main character, Helen, does this rather epically to Pitch, her biological father.
    Helen: Whoa! Who are you to tell me what to do?
    Pitch: I'm your father!
    Helen: Oh, that makes perfect sense! Yes, you're my father! Who, for the last couple of centuries, has been parading across the planet scaring the pants off little kiddies and trying to plunge the world into darkness! And when you finally realize that you have a daughter you not only kidnap me and try and turn me into a creature of darkness, but you also think you have the right to tell me who I can and can't date! Actually, just who I can't date!
    Pitch: It is a parent's job to make sure their child does exactly as they say!
    Helen: (punches him) What kind of father tries to turn his own daughter into some kind of shadow being? If you really cared about me you would do what was best for me, instead of what's best for yourself. I can't be forced to be someone I don't want to be.
  • In Boys Und Sensha-do, Shiho gets this twice.
    • The first comes in Chapter 7, from Miho's Love Interest Akio, (whose family despises Shiho), after Shiho visits Miho in the hospital and disowns her.
    Akio: The only one here that’s a disgrace here is you, Nishizumi. Victory or nothing? If that was true, wouldn’t Maho’s defeat have been enough for you to give her a chance? Miho is twice the tank commander you ever were Shiho.”
    Shiho: I will not be spoken to in such a fashion!
    Akio: It’s the only fashion you deserve to be spoken to. Sensha-do isn’t just about victory. It’s about camaraderie and friendship. Miho faced your team outnumbered more than two to one and she won. With her leadership a team made up of inferior tanks bested yours with their King Tigers, Maus, and Panthers. She beat Maho herself in a singular duel with a Panzer IV. Why are you punishing her for doing well?
    Akio: GET OUT! If you’re not claiming her as your daughter you have no right to be here.
    • In Chapter 8, Miho's older sister Maho does this to Shiho.
    Maho: Mother, when you considered this, did you even think about Miho's feelings?
    Shiho: Sentimentality is a grave extravagance for a soldier, Maho. Miho has blossomed outside our family... could you see her taking a post in the Self Defense forces? Becoming an officer? By disinheriting her, I have done the best for her...She will no doubt find her own way forward.
    Maho: But what about her happiness, mother? She loves you and you cast her out... don't you see how much that has hurt her. She wants to make you proud... why do you think she persisted in sensha-do as a freshman? You have hurt her mother.
  • Happens in the sixth flashback chapter (forty-sixth overall) of The Twilight Child, when the main character finally snaps at her mother. Neither of them were on a good basis with each other anyway, but from thereon out neither speaks to each other until the very end of the story. Even worse since the mother is actually trying to get on with her daughter. The name of this person? Twilight Sparkle.
    Twilight Twinkle: Or what? What can you do to me? What will you do to me that Discord and Star-Swirl the Idiot haven't already done, hmm? Or Princess Celestia for that matter? Do you think you're going to wave some magic about and hope you're going to get "your little girl" back? Do you think there's something wrong with me, that I'm making up all these things about dad for attention? Do you think I want to look at you? Do you think I want to spend any time with you now, when you seemed barely bothered to teach me about magic? When you only ever showed up to lecture me about the fact that I was picked on for being your daughter? No wonder Discord went for dad. Heck, if he'd erased you, I'd probably have cheered with JOY!

    Films — Animated 
  • Kung Fu Panda: Tai Lung angrily calls out his adoptive father, Shifu, when he returns to claim the Dragon Scroll. Angrily relaying that everything he ever did was to make him proud. And his fury over Shifu not doing anything when he was denied the scroll:
    Tai Lung: All I ever did, I did to make you proud! Tell me how proud of me you are, Shifu! Tell me! (Punch) Tell me! (Punch) TELL ME!
  • In the Disney film The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Quasimodo gives an incredible speech to Frollo, the churchman who raised him.
    Frollo: Now- now, l-listen to me, Quasimodo-
    Quasimodo: No, you listen! All my life you've told me that the world is a dark, cruel place! But now I see that the only thing dark and cruel about it is people like you!!!
  • Finding Nemo: Nemo has done this to his Overprotective Dad Marlin.
  • The Lion King II: Simba's Pride: Five words: You. Will. Never. Be. Mufasa.
  • In Tangled, once Rapunzel is dragged back from Corona and realizes she's the lost princess, she calls Mother Gothel out on stealing her and claiming to protect her when she was using her all along. Gothel responds by revealing just how evil she can really be.
    Gothel: You want me to be the bad guy? Fine — now I'm the bad guy...
  • In the The Fairly OddParents movie Wishology, Timmy Turner directs this, combined with What the Hell, Hero?, at both Jorgen Von Strangle and Turbo Thunder about always attacking the Darkness because it looked "scary", not because it did anything. Both Turbo and Jorgen are at least thousands of years old, making it kind of calling the really old men out.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Addams Family: Used with Fester/Gordon after his fake mother pushes him just a little too far....
  • Black Snake Moan: For a female example, Christina Ricci's character Rae calls out her mom in the middle of a Quick Stop over her mother willfully ignoring years of sexual abuse. This leads to a full out brawl in the middle of the store aisles.
  • Braindead: In Peter Jackson's film, Lionel finally stands up to his manipulative, possessive mother. Unfortunately he's waited until she's turned into a gigantic monstrosity, but he's still properly equipped to take her down the old-fashioned way.
  • The Celebration (Festen): This Danish film centres on eldest son Christian very publicly calling his sexually abusive father out at the latter's 60th birthday party. His mother gets her fair share of his contempt as well.
  • Cherrybomb: Luke steps in to prevent his raging alcoholic father from killing himself and the father responds by punching him. At this point Luke snaps completely (having put up with a LOT of crap by this point), hitting his dad back and berating him for being such a useless parent. As if to illustrate this point, the next day the father uses this incident as an excuse to leave town and abandon his son (who is 16, and has no mother) entirely, despite Luke apologising for what he'd done and pleading with him to stay.
  • Citizen Kane:
    • Sees one delivered to Kane's adoptive guardian, Mr. Thatcher:
      Kane: You know, Mr. Bernstein, if I hadn't been very rich, I might have been a really great man.
      Thatcher: Don't you think you are?
      Kane: I think I did pretty well, under the circumstances.
      Thatcher: What would you like to have been?
      Kane: Everything you hate.
    • This is displacement. Kane's really angry at his mother, for sending Kane away when he was young, and putting him into Thatcher's hands. Implicitly, Thatcher is a decent (if very conservative) middle-aged banker who did his best while (ahem) raising Kane.
  • City Slickers: Mitch (Billy Crystal) asks his buddies Ed(Bruno Kirby) and Phil(Daniel Stern) to describe "the best day and the worst day in your life". Ed recalled when stood up to his father, a serial adulterer:
    Ed Furillo: I'm 14 and my mother and father are fighting again... y'know, because she caught him again. Caught him... This time the girl drove by the house to pick him up. And I finally realized, he wasn't just cheating on my mother, he was cheating us. So I told him, I said, "You're bad to us. We don't love you. I'll take care of my mother and my sister. We don't need you any more." And he made like he was gonna hit me, but I didn't budge. And he turned around and he left. He never bothered us again. Well, I took care of my mother and my sister from that day on. That's my best day.
    Phil Berquist: What was your worst day?
    Ed Furillo: Same day.
  • Gladiator: After years of neglect and paternal disapproval, Commodus delivers a truly heart-wrenching one to his father, Marcus Aurelius.
  • Finding Neverland: Emma spends most of the movie trying to control the lives of her daughter and school-aged grandsons, attempting to keep James Barrie out of their lives. Near the end of the movie, George, the eldest brother, finally takes a stand against her meddling.
  • The General's Daughter:
    • This is the entire reason for Campbell's undermining of her father's position by seducing most of his staff, as revenge for the cover-up of her rape at Westpoint.
    • Subverted Trope by Brenner in an offhand comment when questioned if he likes his own father:
      My father was a drunk, a gambler, and a womanizer. I worshipped him.
  • Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?: John Prentice (Sidney Poitier) delivers a scathing speech to his father in one of the only dramatic scenes in this comedy:
    "You listen to me. You say you don't want to tell me how to live my life. So what do you think you've been doing? You tell me what rights I've got or haven't got, and what I owe to you for what you've done for me. Let me tell you something: I owe you nothing!"
  • The Hairy Bird: Abby, to Page Singer. After Page announces that the school is going coed, the girls rebel, but Page wants Abby to take charge of them, at which point Abby tells her off.
  • The Heiress: Towards the end, Catherine Sloper calls her father out on his lifelong emotional abuse of her—treating her as a socially incompetent waste of space, driving away her Gold Digger fiancé (only to protect his money, not her) and telling her that the only thing interesting about her is her $10,000 a year inheritance. She even calls him on his bluff to disinherit her:
    Catherine: You have cheated me! You thought that any handsome, clever man would be as bored with me as you are were. It was not love that made you protect me—it was contempt!
    Dr. Sloper: You have found a tongue at last, Catherine. It is only to say such terrible things to me.
    Catherine: Yes. This is a field where you will not compare me to my mother.
    Dr. Sloper: Promise me you are done with him!
    Catherine:I won't promise.
    Dr. Sloper: Then, I must alter my will.
    Catherine: You should... you should do it immediately!
    Dr. Sloper: I don't want to do it. I don't want to disinherit my only child.
    Catherine: You'd like to think of me sitting in dignity in this handsome house—rich, respected and unloved. But I may take your money and chase after Morris and squander it on him.
    Dr. Sloper: I don't know what you would do, Catherine.
    Catherine: That's right, father. You'll never know, will you?
  • In Hot Fuzz, when the rest of the Sanford Police come in and try to arrest Nicholas, Danny refuses to obey his father's orders, even when he threatens to have them both arrested.
    Frank Butterman: This is ridiculous!
    Danny: No it's not, Dad. It's all very un-ridiculous, and it's only now that I'm starting to realize how un-ridiculous it all is!
    Frank Butterman: SILENCE, DANNY! Think of your mother!
    Danny: Mum is dead, Dad. And for the first time in my life, you know, I'm glad. If she could see what you've become, I think she'd probably kill herself all over again!
  • James and the Giant Peach: In the book, James's Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker were run over by the peach and killed. In the movie however, they catch up to James when he finally makes it to New York City. James is alone, no idea where his friends are, and the townspeople who witnessed his arrival are too flabbergasted by what's going on to do anything but stand there and watch, yet he tells his evil aunts "I said, no. I'm. NOT! I hate that house and that cold room, and how I'm always hungry! (crowd gasps) And how you beat me! (crowd gasps again and turn to Sponge and Spiker) AND TELL ME I WAS NOTHING!" When Sponge and Spiker tell him to shut up, he replies, "No, not this time! I flew a giant peach across the ocean. I landed on the tallest building in the world! I made it! I'm not the one who's nothing, YOU are, and I'm never going back with you! Not me, and not the peach!" They retaliate by attempting to attack him with axes only for the bugs whom James has grown to consider family to descend from the sky and help James deliver much overdue justice to Spiker and Sponge, who can only freak out at the sight of the bugs, screaming their heads off. The movie seems to be a much more satisfying way to see them go down.
  • Kiss Kiss Bang Bang: A somewhat Kick the Son of a Bitch example is found in the end, where a father in his deathbed is slapped around and insulted by Gay Perry for sexually molesting his daughter. Harry at the end justifies this by saying, "Don't worry, he was creepy."
  • Lifetime Movie of the Week: While not always featured, this trope is nonetheless still a given in any movie of this kind (although many non-Lifetime TV movies have done this as well).
  • Little Odessa: Joshua does this several times to his father, with escalating hostility and violence. The reasons are numerous: his father is a strict, belt-wielding figure, harsh on his younger son and harsher on the elder (for good reasons, though). Moreover, he cheats on his wife. However, Joshua is definitely not the victimized party: he was banished from home for being a hitman and not due to some insignificant offense.
  • Meet the Parents (Meet The Fockers): The entire family calls out Robert De Niro's character for using truth serum on his future son-in-law.
  • Moulin Rouge!: Satine to Harold Zidler, a man who has been like a father to her, when he tries to prevent her from running away with Christian. Naturally, her outburst prompts him to make The Reveal (known to the audience already) that she is dying of tuberculosis.
  • The Quick and the Dead: A subplot of the well-cast film. Leonardo diCaprio's young, confident gunslinger spends most of his time in a gunfighting tournament provoking his father (Gene Hackman) into a duel. Hackman asks diCaprio not to duel him, but when diCaprio refuses to back down, Hackman shoots him down immediately.
  • Revolution 1985: Ned, seeing Tom going along with the British without a fight, accuses him of being a coward and runs off to join a gang of youth named Mohawks.
  • Scanners: Dr. Ruth doesn't get this treatment until after he's dead. Once Cameron learns that Dr. Ruth was his father who had him left as a street-wandering pariah his whole life, he is horrified, and does nothing to defend Ruth from the insults of Darryl Revok ("That was Daddy."). And when the inevitable Not So Different moment comes up, it's not Big Bad Revok comparing himself to Cameron; it's Cameron comparing Revok to Ruth. And Revok is outraged.
  • Star Trek Into Darkness: When Admiral Marcus is about to destroy the defenseless Enterprise, Carol slaps his face, shouting, "I'm ashamed to be your daughter!" She still screams when Khan kills him.
  • Star Wars: The whole issue of "Jedi truths" ought to count.
  • The Waterboy: In this Adam Sandler comedy, Bobby Boucher finally stands up to his overprotective Mama:
    Mama Boucher: (furiously) You gonna lose all your fancy foosballs games! And your gonna fail your big exam! Because foosball and school are-
    Bobby: (interrupting, bitterly) The devil?
    (Mama is taken aback)
    Bobby: Everything's the devil to you, Mama! Well, I like school! And I like football! And I'm gonna keep doin' them both because they make me feel good!
    (Bobby grabs his things and walks to the door)
    Bobby: And by the way, Mama. Alligators are ornery 'cause of their "Medulla Oblongata"!
    (Bobby slams the door behind him, but he opens it a few seconds later)
    Bobby: (almost in tears) And I like Vicki, and she likes me! And she showed me her boobies, and I like them too!
    (Bobby slams the door for the last time)
  • Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins: Roscoe (Martin Lawrence) finally deals one out to his father (James Earl Jones) towards the end, during a meltdown at the family obstacle course, for mistreating him for so much of his life.
  • When Did You Last See Your Father?: The whole of this film is a flashback onto this guys life story which (?) leads up to a massive subversion where he should have called his father out but forgives his father on his death bed.
  • In Greedy, Danny ends up calling out his father's anti-materialistic attitudes, taking the side of the rich Uncle Joe over his father's pompous self-righteousness. It was actually a dishonestly Invoked Trope: Danny hired an actor to pose as his "father", with the whole confrontation set up so that Danny could choose Joe over his father.

    Literature 
  • Carmen in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. Her dad definitely deserved it, seeing as he didn't tell her he was engaged, living with his fiancée and her two kids, and getting married that August before she came to spend the summer with him for the first time since the separation.
  • William de Worde does this to his father at the end of the Discworld novel The Truth.
  • In the Harry Potter series:
    • Harry himself throws a Grand Mal fit in Dumbledore's office at the end of Order Of The Phoenix over a combination of the shock of Sirius' death, Dumbledore's misguided avoidance of him for the entire book, and the revelation that Dumbledore had been hiding even more information from him than he suspected (information that might have helped avert the aforementioned death). To his credit, Dumbledore does let him vent his rage before apologizing and promising to tell Harry the whole truth. (It still wasn't ''the whole'' truth, but still things he admits he should've told Harry from the start.)
    • In Deathly Hallows
      • Harry gets to confront Lupin, who just abandoned his wife and unborn child. To his credit, Lupin realises he's being an idiot and, next time he sees Harry, asks him to be godfather to his newly born son.
      • He also gets to call out Dumbledore again, when they meet in Harry's dreamworld limbo train station, towards the end of the book.
  • In the Honor Harrington series, Honor makes an enemy of industrialist Klaus Hauptman when she confiscates one of his freighters with contraband aboard. He continues to sabotage her career for several books, and when Honor saves his life and that of his only daughter, Stacey, in Honor Among Enemies, he still won't bury the hatchet. At that point, his daughter calls him out, threatening to never speak to him again unless he makes peace. He does, and the Hauptmans go on to become two of Honor's most powerful allies on Manticore.
  • In The Gunslinger, Roland calls out Cort for the ritual coming-of-age challenge of every gunslinger. Due to a plot by Walter, Roland is only 14 when he issues the challenge. Walter expects Roland to be disgraced and exiled. Some creative thinking on Roland's part plays a key role in the outcome of the challenge.
  • In A Song of Ice and Fire, the unfairly despised but worthy youngest son Tyrion Lannister finally tells off his father, Lord Tywin Lannister. And then kills him. Tywin deserved it.
  • In The Brothers Karamazov, Dmitri Karamazov calls his father out and ends up beating the everliving crap out of him in a fit of rage. It's part inheritance money and part Love Triangle which spurs him.
  • In one of the Teenage Worrier books, Letty mistakenly believes her father is planning to leave his family for a male lover. She imagines confronting him in a humorous scenario, finishing with:
    And the great noble Hand of God will wag its finger at Dad and say "Look after your kids, punk."
  • In the Jumper novel, the Abusive Parents subplot culminates in an epic Calling Out. Davy jumps his father to his mother's grave and then subjects him to a Breaking Speech. While using Daddy Dearest's whipping belt as a prop to emphasize just how horrific and wrong the abuse was.
  • Not sure if this was included in Romance of the Three Kingdoms, but Cao Pi (son of Magnificent Bastard Cao Cao) ordered one of his concubines (Zhen Ji, for those of you familiar with Dynasty Warriors) to commit suicide on the pretext that she was too jealous of his other wives. One day he takes his heir apparent (and Zhen Ji's son) out for a hunt and manages to bag himself a nice doe; in high spirits, he tells his son to capture the fawn as well, at which point the son answers: "You have already killed the mother; I see no need to murder its child as well".
  • In Prince Roger, near the end of March Upcountry Prince Roger's father tried to pull off a coup before Roger was born. Roger, unfortunately, looks almost identical to the man. Worse, no one ever told Roger what happened, or why his father was banished - or even why his mother seemed to hate and distrust him. The resulting spoiled-lonely-brat-who-wants-some-loving-attention behaviour did nothing to improve anyone's attitude towards him. And to top it all off, once he finally finds all this out...he can't even Call Out his mother for her actions, because she's several solar systems away — so he has to settle for throwing a tantrum of epic proportions, ending up trashing his room and mistreating his sword badly.
  • Mercedes Lackey does this one to a turn in Magic's Pawn: after a series of traumatic experience that include the death of his first love, a failed attempt at suicide, and the sudden acquisition of a massive array of powers that he doesn't really want, Vanyel is drugged to the gills and barely conscious but still able to pull a mild Carrie on his abusive father for spending his entire childhood trying to have the "weakness" beaten out of him and make sure that he became a "real man." He repeatedly uses his new telekinetic powers to knock his father to the ground, demanding to know if he's finally "strong enough" and how his father likes being pushed around by someone bigger and stronger than he is. (His father gets the message, and by the third book of the trilogy, the two of them manage to reconcile.)
    • The "calling the mentor out" version happens in Winds of Fate, when Elspeth realizes that her companion Gwena is herding her, fat, dumb and happy, toward a Glorious Destiny while trying to foist Skif on her as an ideal mate. Her response, paraphrased: Screw Destiny, stop manipulating me, and if you don't like it, you can go back to Haven without me! Gwena is so shocked at Elspeth's behavior that she actually acquiesces (more or less). It turns out pretty well for all involved.
    • Bear calls his father out by proxy in Changes. He goes all-out on the spy his father planted in Haven to keep an eye on him, knowing the spy will send a full report home. He gets to do it face to face in Redoubt.
  • In Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Luke is...very ticked with his father.
    • And in The Last Olympian, Percy does this to all the gods, telling them they should accept all demigods (including checking in time and time on their children) and take responsibility for their actions. And he even extends it to telling them that even the minor gods and their children should have a place at the camp.
    • Also in The Last Olympian, Hades calls out his father.
      "And if there is one thing we agree on - it's that you were a TERRIBLE father."
      • Leo does this to his dad, Hephaestus, in the sequel series, The Heroes of Olympus, to a degree that not even Percy would have.
  • Mark does this to the Emperor, his biological father, when he finally meets him in the Third Book of Swords by Fred Saberhagen. Since the Emperor is really God, it is not very surprising that His response is, in effect, when you're as old as I am and know as much as I do, you can question what I do and why I do it.
  • Coin of the Realm: Rosalind calls out her father, The Ruling Monarch and The Man Who Thought He Knew More About Everything Than Anyone Else, upon assassinating her newly-wed husband at the wedding itself, in front of everyone, and boldly claiming her prize as his new royal assassin.
  • In The Dresden Files book Proven Guilty, Carlos Ramirez confirms his brass-balls-itude by calling out the Merlin himself - the single most powerful wizard in the world - on how much of a hypocritical Jerkass of a bastard he's being. It's also done movingly by Molly, to her mother Charity.
    • Harry himself calls out his de facto father, Ebenezar McCoy, several times in the series. He later finds out that McCoy is his grandfather, making it "Calling the Even Older Man Out."
  • I, Lucifer has many instances of Lucifer calling out "The Old Man" on a few of his perceived jerkass qualities and actions.
  • Senna Wales, when she finally meets up with her mother during her Villain Episode book, Inside the Illusion. Apparently, she's been imagining the moment since she was a small child.
    Senna: How have I been? For the last ten years after you dumped me off? How have I been, the only one like me stuck in a world full of deaf, dumb, and blind fools? Fine, Mom. Fine. How have you been?!
  • In John C. Wright's The Golden Transcedence, Ungannis declares that Humans Are Bastards because her father didn't give her everything she wanted when she was a child. It does not go over well.
  • Inverted in Leven Thumps when Elton calls out his son Leven for killing his wife Maria in childbirth. Then they fight. Afterwards, it's played straight as Leven gets to call Elton out.
  • In the second Night Huntress book, Cat tries to call her father out. Unfortunately, vampire politics get in the way.
  • While still a child, Jane Eyre eventually calls out her aunt and caretaker for being abusive and unfair towards her, and it actually seems to have some effect.
  • In The Corrections, all three of Alfred and Enid's children try to call them out on their various issues and problems. It does not take.
  • The Star Trek Expanded Universe novel The Captain's Daughter has Admiral John "Blackjack" Harriman, father of Enterprise-B captain John Harriman, and heavily implied to be the reason such a young, inexperienced officer is in command of the Enterprise, accompany his son's ship. He spends the entire time boasting about how he got his son such a prestigious command, complaining about James Kirk, and overriding the captain at critical moments. When Captain Harriman finally stands up to him, the admiral unloads on him, calling him names and saying he's worse than Kirk ever was, before sitting in the command chair. The captain's response is to beam him to the brig.
  • Jenna from Septimus Heap does this to Milo Banda, her father who's always absent, in Syren:
    Jenna Heap: And you are not my father. Dad is.
  • Count and Countess tells the story of Vlad Tepes and Elizabeth Bathory, who, though living 100+ years apart, start writing to each other in childhood. At the start of the story, Vlad's father, Vlad II Drakul, has surrendered his three sons to the Ottoman Empire as war hostages. Vlad and his brothers endure unspeakable cruelty while there, and only Vlad survives it seemingly. When Vlad escapes life as a Janissary and walks all the way home to Wallachia, he calls the old man out by murdering him.
  • In Jane Austen's Love and Freindship, Edward does this in face of a marriage to a lovely and agreeable woman.
    "No, never," exclaimed I. "Lady Dorothea is lovely and Engaging; I prefer no woman to her; but know, Sir, that I scorn to marry her in compliance with your Wishes. No! Never shall it be said that I obliged my Father."
  • Tash and Zak Arranda, in Galaxy of Fear: Army of Terror, finally tire enough of their uncle's standoffishness and stubborn secrecy to call him out. Turns out he's The Atoner. It works out well for them in the end.
  • The Mortal Instruments: For the entire duration of Jocelyn's kidnapping and subsequent coma, Clary is completely devoted to bringing her back. When Jocelyn finally is cured and returned, the very first thing Clary does is tear into her for depriving Clary of her Sight and not preparing her for the Shadowhunters' world.
  • Both played straight and subverted by Zephyr in The Windwater Pack: His father Stone Voice is at the top of his list and he never hesitates to let him know it. However, when he has the chance to really put him in his place, he simply says “Good-bye” and walks away.
  • Happens at the end of Gifts, the first book in Annals Of The Western Shore. Orrec confonts his father on faking Orrec's supposed "wild gift" to give Caspromant a fearsome reputation when Orrec really has no gift at all. His father can't even answer, having convinced himself that Orrec really did have a wild gift.
  • In Kristy's Big News, the title character - founder of The Babysitters Club - and her older brothers get to finally do this to the father who walked out on them six years earlier, letting him know exactly how difficult he made life for them by abandoning the family.

    Live Action TV 
  • One moment from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air pops up in "You cry, you lose" threads on forums more than possibly any other scene in TV history: Will's father deciding to abandon him once again, leading Uncle Phil to deal him a scathing remark before Will walks in. After his father leaves, Will vents his anger to Phil, calmly at first, before eventually breaking down into tears and hugging Phil as the episode ends. "How come he don't want me, man?"
  • Sam and Dean Winchester spent about half a season calling out their father John for his various sins toward them on Supernatural, until eventually he died, saving Dean's life in the process. Well, that's one way to make it up to the kid.
    • Bobby gets a moment like this in "Death's Door" as part of his Dying Moment of Awesome. As he lies comatose from a gunshot in the previous episode, Bobby is forced to watch/relive many of his memories. Through this, we learn that his father was a total asshole who physically and emotionally abused Bobby and his mother until young Bobby shot him in self-defense. Near the end of the episode, Bobby full interacts with a memory and confronts his father in a conversation that ends with the below (paraphrased) dialogue:
    Bobby: I was so afraid of becoming like you, I never had kids of my own!
    Bobby's Father: Good. You break everything you touch.
    Bobby: Oh yeah? Well, as fate would have it, I adopted two boys, and they grew up great! They grew up heroes! So you can go straight to Hell!
  • For some reason, this happens a lot on Heroes:
    • In the first season, Nathan Petrelli made it clear what he thought of his mother for her willingness to sacrifice her younger son, Nathan's brother Peter, for the "greater good". They're still on (somewhat strained) speaking terms in Season Two, however.
    • Matt Parkman found out he shared mind powers with the father who abandoned him at age 13. He then engaged his father in a mental battle in which he locked the man in a mental version of the very apartment where the abandonment took place many years in the past. Matt added a "And unlike you, I'M a good father!" kicker to all of this as well.
    • Claire Bennet read the riot act to her father when his increasing paranoia caused serious problems for his family and particularly for Claire. While she made some good points, the unfortunate truth was that his paranoia was actually justified...
    • Sylar does this to his biological father. Though he failed at that. He goes in ready to kill him for killing his bio-mom only to find that he's dying of cancer and he'd be doing him a favor. He learns that he has already made the same mistakes as his father and when he demonstrates that he's already surpassed him in terms of power and is effectively immortal Samson simply replies, "You just have that much longer to suffer." In the end he is still living in his parents' shadow by going after the "Big Game" to prove him wrong.
  • In a surprisingly serious moment in an otherwise pretty funny episode of a pretty funny series, Charlie of Two and a Half Men, having been bugged all day by his mother to try and get him to tell her why he hates her, finally calls out his mother on how horrible she was to him and Alan and blames her for their father's death. Evelyn, true to character, acts as if Charlie is being a whiny brat and walks out.
  • Rita in Dexter lets her mother have it after her mom moves in and starts rearranging her life.
  • Lee Adama's closing speech at Baltar's trial on the new Battlestar Galactica included Calling The Old Man Out (for a twofer, as father and as "the Old Man" as commander of the ship) for some of Adama Senior's actions (however justified they might have been), and at mother-figure Laura Roslin.
    • Lee has called out his father several times - for example, he believed Adama was the main cause of the death of his brother Zak - pressuring him to become a Viper pilot despite his lack of aptitude. Lee also opposed his father on the issue of martial law to the point of being sent to the brig for it.
  • Sawyer unknowingly does this for Locke's father in LOST which culminates in Sawyer killing him. When Sawyer learns of this revelation, he finds out that's precisely why Locke wanted him to meet him since the man had done terrible wrongs of the same nature to the both of them.
    • In a flashback, Ben kills his father during the DHARMA-ville purge as retribution for years of Parental Abuse and neglect (such as forgetting his birthday every year) by his alcoholic father who was constantly blaming him for the death of his mother (who died giving birth to him). May or may not be Disproportionate Retribution, but after seeing Ben being battered around by his father (later seeing him with broken glasses and a black eye for no reason other than doing as he was told) and how he is terrified at being taken back to him after being healed by The Others, he may have deserved it.
    • Later on, Sun does this to her father, chewing him out for his treatment of her husband. She also informed him that she had bought a controlling share in his company. It was awesome.
  • Comes up many, many, MANY times in Alias. To the point where it's maybe half of Sydney's interactions with Jack, Sydney's interactions with Irina, and, eventually, Nadia's interactions with Sloane.
  • Lex Luthor does this to Lionel every other Sunday in Smallville. Well, he did it before he threw the old man out a window.
    • The Voice of Jor-El's been called out a few times as well, both by Clark and by Jonathan on Clark's behalf.
      • In the episode "Abandoned", Lois called out Jor-El's voice as well for abandoning Clark, at one point shouting, "You're not one tenth the Kryptonian he is! He's lucky to be rid of you!". When the Fortress's computer systems threatened her in response, Clark angrily announced to Jor-El, "After this, we're done!"
  • On Frasier, the reverse is usually true; Martin (the Old Man) often ends up calling out his two sons Frasier and Niles for their poor behaviour, especially towards him. Martin isn't the perfect father, however, and on occasion Frasier and Niles call him out with justifiable complaints; such as the time Martin berated Frasier and Niles for not welcoming a woman Martin liked with open arms because they didn't like her, only for Frasier and Niles to angrily point out that Martin himself never bothered to make the effort to be welcoming to any of their love interests if he didn't like them.
  • Near the end of OZ, Ryan O'Reilly confronts his father, whose abuse arguably shaped him into the sociopathic Manipulative Bastard that he is and probably led to the current conditions that he and his brother Cyril are in. He promptly tells him that if he ever comes out of prison, he will immediately hunt him down and murder him.
  • Parodied on The Colbert Report - when mentor and father figure Bill O'Reilly makes a derogatory comment about how badly the show is coping during a writer's strike, saying that Colbert "can't even find the cameras", Colbert reacts with a violent "FUCK YOU, OLD MAN!!" tirade... to the wrong camera. He realises this, and immediately apologises - "Busted."
  • Done for laughs on Titus. Titus has a flashback, when he tried to do the 'coming of age' thing by picking a fight with his father. Cut to the 'fist cam' of dad knocking Titus on his ass. Dad happens to be played by Stacy Keach. If you have ever seen the film The Ninth Configuration, you know what a bad idea it is to mess with 'Killer Kaine'.
    • Having seen his run as Mike Hammer, it always was a bad, bad idea.
  • In one episode of Wings, Joe and Brian's mother, who abandoned them as children, returns to the island. Brian is thrilled to see her, but Joe is not so forgiving:
    "I was twelve years old; you left me with a sink full of dirty dishes and two kids to take care of, Brian and Dad. I have taken crap my whole life for being too serious, for being a worrier. Well, why do you think that is, huh?"
    • Made stronger by the fact that, just after arriving, the mother makes light of Joe's non-forgiveness, saying he was 'anal even in the womb'. She slinks out of his anger by admitting the stunningly obvious - that she's just a lousy mother. One basic rule of Wings: Joe is never allowed to successfully call out anyone, ever.
  • In the last ever episode of The Fast Show Competitive Dad's father comes round for Christmas, and is an even worse bully than his son. In a touching moment for a comedy sketch show, the grandson snaps and tells the old man off... only for his dad to start with the 'How dare you talk to my father like that' routine. A moment later when granddad has left he finally tells his son he loves him.
  • Dinah does this to her mother, Black Canary, in Birds of Prey when she comes back and says she wants to "make things right."
  • In an episode of HBO's True Blood, Tara's alcoholic mother will not bail her our of jail after she had done the same thing for her many times before. "The first time I'm in trouble you turn your back on the one person whose stood by you. After all the times I cleaned you up? All the times you beat me, and stole my money? My whole life is shit because of you! You're not my mother. Get out my sight, you evil bitch!" Tara's mom tries to say, "I love you." Tara won't have it. "No, you don't. You never did."
  • Subverted in The Sopranos: After Tony finds out that mother tried to have him killed, he goes to her retirement home to Call The Old Woman Out, only to find that she's had a stress-induced stroke, and is probably unable to consciously hear any of his rage-fueled confrontation.
    • This continues in later seasons, as Tony tries to call her out more than once about her attempt at killing him, and the heaps of psychological abuse she's put on him and his family over the years. Each attempt never comes to any kind of definitive resolution of their issues. In the end, she dies at the beginning of the third season, leaving Tony psychologically scarred with no clear picture or resolution of his feelings of his mother, and this affects him for years afterwards.
  • In the second season finale of Weeds, Shane uses the occasion of his elementary school valedictory speech to Call Out The Entire Community.
  • In Firefly, Simon calls out his father on his callous disregard for River's abuse at the Academy.
  • South of Nowhere has Spencer calling out Paula after the latter has spent too much time at the hospital (fueling speculation that she may actually be having an affair).
  • In Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Bashir calls out his father for not only running away from his problems, but for having him undergo an illegal genetic enhancements operation so as to avoid the shame of having a special-needs child.
  • Not entirely sure that Gregory House is physically capable of going a week without calling the parent(s) of a young patient insensitive, incompetent, overprotective, a Jerkass or any of a thousand other kinds of general idiot.
    • When it came to calling out his own dad though, Greg did it when he was twelve, point-blank telling Daddy-House he wasn't his father. Greg half-deduced, half-convinced himself this was true after taking years of borderline-abuse of neglect. After this happened, his father didn't speak to him for months, and their relationship never improved before Daddy-House's death.
      • He was right.
  • On That '70s Show, Eric gets a Crowning Moment Of Awesome when he finally stands up to his overbearing father Red, who is particularly bitter over having sold his Corvette to raise money for what he thinks is his wife Kitty's pregnancy, only to realize he did it for nothing when Kitty's actually going through menopause. After Red snaps at Eric one too many times, Eric finally loses his temper and tears a strip off Red for whining about losing his Corvette, when Kitty is extremely upset and needs his support. Eric concludes by reminding Red of all the times he'd told Eric to "be a man", and then tells Red to practice what he preaches and "be a man" for his wife.
    • Also, when Hyde's father comes back to town. Hyde eventually calls him out on abandoning him, but it's subverted when he readily acknowledges that he pulled a dick move. It ends with them calmly discussing it over a beer, then getting smashed.
  • Hugo's Crowning Moment Of Awesome on The Vicar of Dibley is when, after being told by his emotionally and mentally abusive father David that if he marries Alice then "you will no longer be welcome in this house, you will no longer be my son, and as this will attests, you will have nothing!" he actually stands up to David (a rare feat for him), shoves the will back at him, and says, respectfully but coldly, "On the contrary, sir, I shall have everything in the world that I desire."
  • Happens a few times on series/Veronica Mars, given how common terrible parenting is in Neptune:
    • Logan hates his Dad, and is calls him out a few times - once on Lynn's death, which Aaron is held accountable for, given how he cheated on her until she couldn't take it, and threw herself off a bridge. Later, in season 2, the two are put in a jail cell together, and Logan yells at Aaron about the fact he slept with then killed Logan's girlfriend, then tried to kill Logan's next girlfriend, despite Aaron's denials.
    • Dick gets a pretty epic one in season 3, when his Dad suddenly returns and he calls Dad out on the way they treated Cassidy, how much responsibility they have in Cassidy killing a dozen people and throwing himself off a hotel roof, and why Dad didn't come back for Cassidy's funeral.
    • In the season 1 finale, Veronica has become completely disillusioned with her mother, yells at her for not going through the rehab Veronica put her in, and making Veronica's college money a waste. She's so angry she kicks Lianne out.
    • In season 2, Trina finds out who her biological father is, and calls him out for abandoning her in a bathroom at the school he taught at.
  • Gloria Stivic does this a lot on All in the Family. She chides Archie for his treatment of Edith, and takes him to task for his bigoted remarks, particularly against women. At times she hits him on top of the head. Despite this, however, and unlike most other examples on this page, they love each other dearly and it shows.
  • Parodied on Buffy the Vampire Slayer when all the Main Characters are hit with a memory erasing spell, and amnesiac Spike starts thinking Giles is his father. (They both have British accents, physically they're the right ages...)
    Spike: Oh God, how I must hate you.
    Giles: What did I do?
    Spike: There's always something.
    • Later circumstantial evidence seems to indicate that Spike's first name is "Randy" (which means "horny" in British slang).
      Spike: I knew there was a reason I hated you!
      Giles: Randy's...a family name, undoubtedly.
  • On the Angel end, we have Connor, who spends most of season 4 doing this repeatedly to Angel.
  • Done with a slight twist in one episode of M*A*S*H. Colonel Potter calls out Margaret's father for making her feel, in spite of her excellent service record and profound diligence as head nurse, like nothing's ever good enough. Daddy Houlihan had actually fled the operating room because the blood made him sick, but Margaret mistook it for his being disappointed in her. She didn't have the heart to call him out herself, so Potter did it for her.
  • NCIS - Cementing his status as Papa Wolf to his team, episode 7x12, "Flesh and Blood" features Gibbs calling out the elder Anthony DiNozzo, on Tony's behalf. Specifically for one incident, and implicitly for a lifetime of neglect.
    Papa DiNozzo: We keep in touch.
    Gibbs: Really? Four years ago, Tony almost died of pneumonic plague. I expected to see you then. I didn't.
    Papa DiNozzo: He never told me he was sick.
    Gibbs: Well, Tony gets his personality from somewhere. I'm betting there's a lot of things in your life you don't share.
    • He also does this for Ziva, although he delivers the speech to a messenger instead of her actual father.
    • And now, as of season 10, Gibbs has called out McGee's father, a Navy Admiral who was up for a Presidential cabinet post and seemed to have little problem being verbally demeaning to Tim right in front of Gibbs. Ever the Papa Wolf, Gibbs finally told the man rather scathingly what he thought of him.
      Gibbs: You make him think he's nothing. You're the one worth nothing.
  • Malcolm in the Middle. Francis's final words to Lois before moving to Alaska were nothing short of hateful.
    • Hal also berates his dad. It starts out with how his entire family is being horrible to Lois at his dad's party and and his dad is doing nothing about it. It then extends to how his dad doing nothing is a running theme; while his dad was always joking around with him, they never had an emotionally close relationship because of this. He goes on to list problems he had while growing up that were made worse because they were ignored (Interestingly, Hal himself ignored one of these same problems in Francis, Reese, and Malcolm just a few episodes before.).
  • It's a Crowning Moment Of Awesome for Eric Van Der Woodsen when his father reappears, after having been gone for fifteen years.
    Eric: Please stop acting like you and I have any kind of relationship.
    Will: You're right, I have a lot to make up for.
    Eric: I'm sorry. The window for that closed somewhere between my twelfth birthday and my suicide attempt. Don't worry, I'm fine now. Going through all that without a father made me realize that I don't need one.
  • The Magnificent Seven: Resident gambler and con man Ezra Standish does this the first time his mother—from whom he learned all his less savory skills—shows up.
    Ezra: You didn't raise me as well as a... as a stray cat raises a litter. You-you dumped me. Remember? At every aunt and uncle's house you could find. Unless, of course, you needed me... for a con.
  • This happened in Glee - when Sue's mother shows up for her daughter's "wedding" and starts making all sorts of demands, Sue demands to know how she could just up and leave her daughters for years before coming back and trying to call the shots. And all the mother could say was "Oh, you don't know how hard this has been on ''me'', the sacrifices I had to make for a life of adventure!".
  • Reid finally gets his moment in Criminal Minds Season 4 when he meets his father for the first time in twenty years:
    Dad: You don't look like me anymore. You used to - people always said so.
    Reid: They say people look like their dogs, too. They put it down to prolonged mutual exposure - if you live with someone long enough, you start to mimic them. So it's really not that surprising that I don't look like you. I haven't seen you in twenty years.
  • In the first episode of the Seventh Season of Gene Simmons Family Jewels, Sophie confronts her father, Gene, about how he was always with gorgeous scantly clad women and that it hurts her and family. She told him that she loves him but she doesn't have to talk to him.
  • Doctor Who - Shows up in "The Idiot's Lantern" (the full exchange is on the quotes page). The son finally giving his dad the put-down he deserves encourages his mum to throw the dad out at the end of the episode.
  • In the Beverly Hills 90210 sequel series, when Navid tells a school counselor that an underage student from the school starred in one of his father's porn films, the police investigate his father. His father blames Navid for that, who retorts that his father broke the law.
  • Inverted in a season 4 episode Sons of Anarchy, when Opie's father Piney calls him out for cheating on his wife by punching him in the face.
  • On Merlin, Arthur has called out Uther a time or two, although since Uther's the king, it didn't make a whole lot of difference. Morgana did this in a way as well after she found out the truth in season 3, and it ended with Uther in the dungeon.
  • Catherine has gotten into this a time or two on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation... once, she didn't hesitate to call Sam a murderer for ordering a showgirl killed, and another time, when her daughter was kidnapped by one of Sam's rivals, Catherine angrily calls him a "thug in thousand dollar shoes".
  • Ray Vecchio on Due South "North". He gives it to his (dead ghostly) father big time when Vecchio Sr won't stop belittling and annoying him about his actions in the woods.
  • Nathan Young delivers a spectacular one of these speeches to his father in a second-season episode of Misfits, after finding out that he cheated on his mother, went on to abandon his illegitimate son, Jamie, once the affair was over - and refused to even speak to Jamie when they met again. It's one of the few times in the entire show Nathan sounds genuinely emotional and not just sarcastic:
    You know what? He's better off not knowing you! I wish I was him!
    (A pause, and then Nathan's father leaves the room)
    Where're you going? That's right, dad, walk away with your tiny little legs, you FUCKIN' midget!
  • Boyd Crowder goes all Badass Preacher on his father by calling him out on how his drug peddling has ruined Harlan County in Justified.
  • In the Game of Thrones TV series, there's a scene which wasn't in the books where Theon Greyjoy calls out his father Balon for his hypocrisy in complaining about the way Theon's changed during his time with the Starks (despite Balon being the one who gave him to them as a hostage,) and for calling Theon weak for not espousing the Might Makes Right traditions of their people (despite Balon being comprehensively defeated on his own terms and clearly considering his conquerors wrong). Balon clearly looked guilty about this (a ''really'' big deal for him), and the fact that he immediately backhanded Theon for his impudence in no way detracts from Theon's awesomeness in this scene.
    • Subverted with Lord Tywin Lannister; his son Tyrion and daughter Cersei try to call him out on his ruthless behaviour or his coldness towards them, but he always has a devastating Shut Up, Kirk! response.
  • Suki does this to her father in Tower Prep
    "If my family built this school...then I have no family. You are not my father."
  • Once Upon a Time: Belle calls her father out when he has her kidnapped and then tries to force her over the Storybrooke town line (which would erase her memories) in order to get her away from Rumplestiltskin.
    • Then Baelfire/ Neal does this to his father later in the season. It's both awesome and heartbreaking.
  • Happens in Pawn Stars.
  • In The Borgias, Cesare and Lucrezia both try to call out Rodrigo for not letting Vannozza come to Lucrezia's wedding. In the end, it doesn't quite work; Vannozza still can't go to the actual wedding, but Cesare brings her to the party afterwards and Rodrigo doesn't really care, although Giovanni Sforza does.
  • Jeff from Community has a lot of resentment towards his deadbeat dad. After over twenty years, he finally meets him - and his half-brother, who is a neurotic wreck. Eventually Jeff's father confides that he's proud of how Jeff turned out, and how it was better he wasn't there... to which Jeff spells out just how emotionally maladjusted, hurt, and bullied he became because of him.
  • Adam does it in CSI NY. His dad was in New York for treatment and was essentially senile, at least part of the time. Adam eventually breaks down and can't keep from letting out his rage about the abuse he suffered, even though his dad can't remember it anymore.
  • Ellie Bartlet, who believes herself to be suffering from Middle Child Syndrome, tells her father she doesn't know how to make him happy after she calls a reporter to offer support for her godmother, the Surgeon General, who made waves by essentially reversing the administration's position on marijuana. The end of the episode reveals that this isn't the case.
    President Bartlet: The only thing you ever had to do to make me happy was come home at the end of the day.
  • In Arrow Laurel calls her father out for using her as bait to catch the Vigilante. She tells him that the most frigthening part, the most dangerous part, was having guns pointed at her (by the police).
  • In Salem, Anne expresses outrage at her father's duties involving the witch hunt, particularly killing people only presumed guilty. John Alden lives for this trope, though he doesn't do it to his father (who's died by this point).

    Mythology/Religion 
  • A recurring theme in Greek Mythology. Cronus does it to his father Uranus, as punishment for imprisoning his children, and Zeus does it to his father Cronus in turn, for doing his damnedest to swallow all of his own children at birth. In both cases, it ends in a rather permanent Groin Attack.
  • Achilles does it to Agamemnon, the commander of the Greek forces at large, in The Iliad. Agamemnon responds by taking Achilles' war prize, kicking off the plot.
  • In The Book Of Job, Job cries out to God and asks him for an answer as to all the horrible things that have happened to him. God's response: Because I Said So.

    Music 
  • The Trope Namer is the Garth Brooks song "The Night I Called the Old Man Out", in which the narrator and his father come to blows. It's never quite revealed what exactly the father is being called out for, but by the end of the song the son relents, realizes his father is right, and "prays someday he's half the man he is."
  • Either a songwriter, singer, or someone closely associated with the band Simple Plan must have had some serious father issues, because a fair number of their songs are about just this: "Shut Up", "Perfect", "One Day", "You Don't Mean Anything". And isten to the song "This Song Saved My Life." There is a line which says that he became closer with his dad than he used to be.
  • The Johnny Cash song "A Boy Named Sue" deals with a man on a search to find his old man, who abandoned him at a very young age and left him with the titular name (which led, as you might expect, to a lot of bullying for the kid). When Sue finally finds his father, he calls him out with "My name is Sue! How do you do! Now you gonna DIE!", then starts throwing punches.
  • Skillet's song "Open Wounds" is essentially about a young man calling his father out for being emotionally distant in his life (with lyrics like "How could you hate me/When all I ever wanted to be was you?") The song is based on frontman John Cooper's rocky relationship with his father after his mother died of cancer, but they've since made up.
  • Dream Theater's "Honor Thy Father" is exactly this. Directed towards a stepfather, but a pretty venomous rendition of the trope nonetheless.
    • Drummer Mike Portnoy wrote this song about his stepfather. He explained, "I'm not very good at writing love songs, so I decided to write a HATE song!"
  • The Mountain Goats song "Lion's Teeth" describes a terrifying confrontation with the singer's abusive stepfather, imagined as a literal lion.
    • The whole album is an example of Calling The Old Man Out. There's a reason why the album is dedicated to those who are living in broken homes.
  • Metallica's "Dyers Eve" is mostly this, with both parents being called out.
  • Reversed in Ayreon's "Day 16: Loser" off "The Human Equation". Here we have the abusive, alcoholic, jerkass of a father berating and calling out his own son while in the hospital. He goes on about how weak, helpless and pathetic his son is before leaving. The closest we get to a response is when the son's rage persona freaks out and screams at the father.
  • Pearl Jam's "Better Man" is a good example. It's inspired by Eddie Vedder's abusive stepfather, whom he referred to as "the bastard who married my mama".
  • Lifehouse's "Walking Away" and "Blind" are both good examples of this.
  • Nickelback Never Again: "Father's a name you haven't earned yet / You're just a child with a temper / Haven't you heard you don't hit a lady / Kickin' your ass would be a pleasure."
    • Not surprising, the wife busts a cap in her abusive husband.
  • 3 Doors down. Sarah Yellin' at the whole family.
  • Iron Maiden's "Wrathchild".
  • Korn's "Daddy"
    • There has been some confusion over this one, given the title. Jonathan Davis has clarified (in the few interviews where he discusses this song) that his father did not abuse him; rather, the song is about a neighbor who abused him, with the line "I'll be your daddy" being some sort of sick come-on and not at all literal. The reason he was so ticked off at his parents was because they didn't believe him when he told them about it.
  • Disturbed's "Down with the Sickness", though done symbolically - the "mother" in question represents society.
  • The whole point of Everclear's "Father of Mine."
  • Any Eminem song about his mother, especially "Cleanin' Out My Closet".
  • 2Pac's second album has "Papa'z Song", featuring 2Pac and his half-brother Moprene raging at 2Pac's stepfather and Moprene's father at abandoning his family.
  • Martha Wainwright's "Bloody Motherfucking Asshole" is about her father Loudon Wainwright III.
  • Death Cab for Cutie's "Styrofoam Plates" consists entirely of a boy/young man calling his father out in the bitterest way imaginable at said father's funeral. Naturally, averts Never Speak Ill of the Dead.
  • Demi Lovato's song "For The Love Of a Daughter" is about her biological father's drinking & abusiveness, directed at him. It includes lines like "Lied to your flesh & your blood, put your hands on the ones that you swore you loved," and says "You're hopeless" as part of the chorus.
  • A bittersweet example is Martin Simpson's Never any good, where the narrator is saying his dad was no use, but without those traits he'd have never been born
    You were never any good with money / couldn't even hold a job / not steady enough for the office / not hard enough for the hod ... If you'd have been a practical man / If you'd have been forewarned / you would have seen that it never would work / And I would have never been born
  • James Durbin's song "Screaming" has him calling out his parents for being "liars" because they said that his life would improve with time.

    Tabletop RPG 
  • The Horus Heresy, where Calling The Old Man Out resulted in a galaxy-splitting civil war which left trillions dead, trapped a comatose Crystal Dragon Jesus on life support, and started ten thousand years of the worst regime imaginable as mankind slowly shudders its way towards extinction. Never let it be said that Warhammer 40,000 does anything by halves.
    • Well, it does a few people by halves, but only after the chainswords have been shut down.
  • Very common in a game of Bliss Stage, where someone is almost certainly going to get sick of the Authority Figure's crap and tear them a new one.

    Theater 
  • Hamlet:
    • Hamlet, in his Crowning Moment Of Awesome, absolutely rips his mother to shreds for her quasi-incestuous ways.
      Hamlet: Now, mother, what's the matter?
      Gertrude: Hamlet, thou hast thy father much offended.
      Hamlet: Mother, you have my father much offended.
    • And again, a few lines later:
      Gertrude: Have you forgotten me?
      Hamlet: No! By the rood, not so. You are the queen, your husband's brother's wife, and — would it not be so! — you are my mother.
  • Into the Woods: The Baker does this to The Mysterious Man at the end of act two, resulting in the eleven o'clock number "No More'', in which the absent father helps his son to not repeat his mistakes.
  • The Glass Menagerie: Tom tells his mother off before leaving.
  • Wicked: "Defying Gravity" is an indirect example, as the requisite Old Man isn't there to call out. Not that that stops Elphie...
  • Jesus Christ Superstar: "Gethsemane". The Old Man in this case being God, although Jesus relents and goes along with the original plan.
  • In You Can't Take It With You, Tony tells off his father for giving up on the dreams of his youth, including being a trapeze artist and a saxophone player. Tony Sr. still has the sax in the back of his closet, though.
  • At the end of Mrs. Warren's Profession, Vivie Warren calls out her mother for not being very maternal and for her *ahem* profession.
  • In All My Sons, Chris Keller turns on his father for shipping 128 cracked engine heads that caused the deaths of 21 men. When he finds out his father knew about it but told nobody until it was too late, he asks him what kind of a man would do such a thing. His father says it was for him, and Chris explodes with rage:
    "For me! Where do you live, where have you come from? For me!—I was dying every day and you were killing my boys and you did it for me? What the hell do you think I was thinking of, the Goddam business? Is that as far as your mind can see, the business? What is that, the world—the business? What the hell do you mean, you did it for me? Don't you have a country? Don't you live in the world? What the hell are you? You're not even an animal, no animal kills his own, what are you? What must I do to you? I ought to tear the tongue out of your mouth, what must I do?"
  • The Wild Duck: Gregers Werle has an entire scene where he calls his father out on his schemes. When he comes to the fate of his mother, it almost goes into Tear Jerker territory. Not that old Werle minded, though.

    Video Games 
  • The father and son of Final Fantasy X set up a Calling The Old Man Out throughout the entire game (case in point: in a Flashback where a young Tidus doesn't show any grief for his missing father and wishes that he'll never come back, his mother asks him if he won't wish for his return so that he can tell him how much he hates him). Near the end of the game they subvert it when Tidus, who has sympathized too much with his father to resent him anymore, tries to call out Jecht despite the tears from his eyes and the knot in his throat. He's barely able to say that he hates Jecht, but does choke it out, only to immediately follow it up by saying that he doesn't mean it, but doesn't know what else to feel. To his credit, Jecht had already acknowledged what a horrible father he had been, and that Tidus was justified in his hate.
    • Dissidia: Final Fantasy changes their dynamic a bit; Jecht is more or less something of a Posthumous Character (kind of, it's complicated) in Final Fantasy X, but in Dissidia, he's fully alive and his normal self. Tidus's showdown with Jecht has Jecht initially beating the tar out of Tidus, only for Tidus to recover and yell, "There's no tomorrow for me until I beat you today!" It's actually pretty cool.
      • Before the fight he did get the chance to call him a "no good, self-centered old bastard."
      • And his antagonistic relationship with his father is never actually explained in Dissidia, beyond the need to settle things with Jecht. It's unclear if it's a case of hatred and loathing or anger at living in the old man's shadow and disgust at his father's being manipulated.
  • In the last chapter of Max Payne 2, checking Senator Woden's phone messages will reveal a recent one where Vlad, who saw Woden as a father figure, rants about having never received a word of thanks from him. This is a rather extreme example of the trope, as Vlad was planning to kill Woden.
    • Vlad is also pretty egotistical about it. "Would it have killed you to say 'thank you' for once in your life? 'Vlad, my son—can I call you my son, because I sure do love you like one. Vlad, my son, you are a true prodigy. Everything you touch turns to gold!'"
  • Kazuya Mishima from Tekken, after being thrown to a ravine by his father Heihachi, when in tender age of 5 nonetheless, made a Deal with the Devil to get back up, build up his strength, topple his father, and then throw him back to the same ravine he was thrown.
    • There's also his son, Jin Kazama, to both of his father and paternal grandfather.
  • Oswald does this to Odin at the end of the first episode of Odin Sphere.
    • Velvet and Ingway had a few moments of chewing out their illegitimate daddy Odin as well, although they went about it in entirely different ways: Velvet outright rejected him; Ingway whipped up an army of Netherworld denizens, learned a secret transformation, and then stormed his kingdom and tried to kill him.
      • Cornelius arguably has a moment like this with his dad: After one royal blunder too many, King Edmund tries to abdicate the throne and give the crown to his son. Cornelius tells him that he can't - the people will never accept a cursed Pooka as their king - and while Edmund never deserved the crown in the first place, now is the time for him to stop being a coward and act like a true ruler.
  • Balthier tries to call out his father in Final Fantasy XII, but Cid just ignores it.
    "How could you do this? How could you fall so far?"
  • You have exactly one chance to do this in Fallout 3 after rescuing your father from Tranquility lane, but disappointingly it changes nothing.
    • This is chiefly due to the disappointingly small range of dialogue options that would allow you to truly Call The Old Man Out. You're never able to mention that his leaving created too much turmoil and danger for you to remain in Vault 101 as he intended and the option that comes closest requires you to have performed one of the game's more evil acts (blowing up Megaton, which allows your father to maintain the moral high ground. Similarly, you're unable to explain to Doctor Li why you left the Vault against James' wishes, except with a childish "I do what I want" kind of answer.
    • You can also do this when talking to Sentinel Cross. She calls you an Ungrateful Bastard and is so offended she will not be your companion.
  • In Dragon Quest VII, Winged Humanoid Pendragon gets called out by his elderly mother on behalf of his adopted daughter, Firia. She isn't adopted, mind - she was just born without wings, and he pretended she was just an abandoned orphan because he was too scared to admit his 'flesh and blood was flawed'. This included standing by while his other daughter treated Firia like a slave, and while the other kids in Gorges mocked and abused her — at one point their 'pranks' almost cause her to fall to her death.
  • Inverted in Dragon Quest VIII by King Clavius and Prince Charmles. Having given his son every opportunity to grow into a good heir, only to watch the Entitled Bastard screw the rules, he finally calls him out by publicly revealing he knew all along that Charmles had bought his Argon Heart instead of finishing his Rite of Passage, and had kept silent as a Secret Test of Character and declaring he had proven himself incapable of serving as heir.
  • The penultimate mission in Oni is something like this: Konoko raids the TCTF headquarters in an attempt to call out Griffin (her nearest thing to a father figure, save her dead uncle, after years of systematically lying to her and using her, and ultimately trying to have her killed. Once he is cornered, the player is given a choice: you can kill Griffin or let him live. If you choose the latter option, the final boss is much easier as a consequence, and Griffin redeems himself at the very end.
  • Two of the "messenger quests" on Knights of the Old Republic have this trope, and a third has an arguable variant on it. The most literal one is Carth's seems the son he thought dead has actually joined the Sith. Cue one awkward moment in the Korriban academy with two hot-headed Onasis. Bastila's is a female version her terminally-ill and rather ill-tempered mother on Tatooine needs help retrieving a data holocron made by Bastila's late father. The arguable one is Mission's, as her deadbeat brother was the one who more or less raised her. She finds out it was his idea to abandon her at the age of twelve. Cue a lot of players wanting to kick the guy's blue butt into orbit!
  • In Mass Effect 2, Jacob's personal mission has him learning that after being promoted to acting captain and crash landing on a planet where the local flora leads to mental decay, his father eventually set up a Lord of the Flies-esque "paradise" for himself, killed off his fellow officers, made the women his personal harem and sabotaged attempts at outside contact. Jacob for his part is absolutely disgusted, no longer accepting the man before him as his father and depending on what Shepard recommends him will either have him arrested by the Alliance, leave him to the survivors, or force him to commit suicide.
  • Not necessarily calling the Old Man out, but the Old Woman. In BioShock 2, Eleanor Lamb is being turned into a one-person hive mind by her mother, and is terrified of what she sees as a plot as mad as Andrew Ryan's. With her "Father"'s help (IE: You, her former Big Daddy), she frees herself. The kind of person she becomes depends largely on your moral choices concerning Little Sister disposal and a few Kill/Spare choices along the way.
  • In Persona 2: Innocent Sin (and seen in a flashback in Eternal Punishment), you discover that Philemon helped orchestrate the events of the series up to this point to test whether he or Nyarlathotep was truly the more powerful aspect of humanity. Events that involved creating an ill girl, the deaths of numerous people — both innocent and not-so-innocent — and an Earth-Shattering Kaboom before he offered the opportunity to perform a Cosmic Retcon that made that an alternate timeline. The game gives you the option of punching him for what he's helped put everyone through.
  • Raziel from Legacy of Kain has this trope as one of his primary motivations throughout Soul Reaver, the first half of Soul Reaver 2, and continues as a lingering issue right up until the end of Defiance in regards to Kain, his vampiric "father".
  • Krista Sparks has this in her Twisted Metal: Head-On ending to her father, Calypso.
    Krista: What's the problem? You didn't want to help me! You just want another contestant to kill all those innocent people! You destroy everything and run around like you own the world!
    • The tragic irony is that he did want to help her more than anything, but is unable to do anything unless someone wishes for it and could only wish if she won the contest. You can clearly see how utterly heartbroken he is by having to put her through this.
  • In Seisen no Keifu, there are many examples:
    • First Generation: Lex calls out his father, Langobalt, if you make them fight.
    • Second Generation: If Levin is the father of Phee and Sety, they call him out for abandoning their mother Ferry. If Nanna's father is Fin, she will also call him out on letting her mother Lachesis leave Lester and try crossing for the Yied desert in search of her eldest son Delmud. And last, Altenna calls out her adoptive father Trabant and mixes it with You Killed My Parents.
    • Thracia 776: Averted, as Mareeta isn't upset with her father Galzus, and in fact she's overjoyed to see him and manages to recruit him for the group. Justified as Galzus had saved her life before and tried to hide it, but she could see through him anyway.
  • Deconstructed HARSHLY in Fire Emblem Awakening. Severa idn't take kindly how her mother Cordelia held an Undying Loyalty to Prince Chrom, the guy whom she once held an Unrequited Love for. At some point, she was both so upset at what she saw as a borderline betrayal to her dad (whoever he is) and so scared about Cordelia possibly dying in the war, that she yelled at her mother for it. The result? Cordelia went out to fight, died in battle and never returned home, and Severa was totally traumatised for that. When Severa returns to the past with her friends and she's recruited by the Shepherds, she again questions Cordelia and her throughts on Chrom... but this time it's more of a desperate Jerk Ass Facade, as she's very aware that this Cordelia isn't the same mother she lost (Timey-Wimey Ball and all) and doesn't want to emotionally connect to her only to probably lose her again.
  • In Chrono Trigger, if he's present, Magus tells Queen Zeal how pathetic she really is, and that killing her would be the merciful thing to do. She doesn't know he's her son, though. To emphasize how personal the battle is for him, the boss music is replaced by Magus' battle theme.
  • In the manga version of Tales of Symphonia, Zelos tries this by calling out Lloyd's father Kratos for betraying his own son and pushing all his problems onto him. It's not very effective as he receives the brush off and Zelos admits he was channeling his anger at his own parents who would do the same thing to him and his hatred towards himself for having the same tendencies.
    • In the game itself there's an example that teeters right on the level of Narm Charm. You'd think Lloyd would want to call Kratos out for not admitting he was Lloyd's father, or for betraying Lloyd to Cruxius, or any number of things. But no, Lloyd's tirade of choice is after the Duel Boss encounter, when he lectures Kratos for being a Death Seeker.
      Lloyd: What will you accomplish by dying? Nothing! There is no meaning in dying!
      Kratos: You're...right...to think, I had to have my son teach me such an obvious lesson...
  • Silver essentially does this in Pokemon Heart Gold And Soul Silver, in the Celebi time travel scene. It's not quite as obvious he's Giovanni's son in the US version as in the original Japanese, but the trope is still in evidence.
  • In Borderlands 2, Angel has spent her entire life as essentially a slave to her father, Handsome Jack. At the end of her final mission, where she has the player destroy her life support system so she can die is to call him "an asshole." Since her father apparently kept constantly chiding her for using "bad language", and ordered the death penalty for anyone else who used profanity, this is one of the deeper insults she could offer him.
  • In the Dawnguard DLC for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Serana calls out both of her parents for treating her as a pawn rather than a daughter. She is actually more vicious towards her mother Valerica because she had already given up on her father, the evil Lord Harkon, a long time ago. If the player has been supportive towards Serana in dialogue and kept her as a Follower for a long time, she will mention that the Dragonborn has done more for her in the short time they've known each other than her mother has done in the last few millennia. Later she'll comment that her mother was, in a way, just as bad as her father. Valerica, to her credit, is sane enough to apologize to Serana and admit her mistakes. Lord Harkon is too far gone to care.
  • Jude in Agarest Senki 2 does this to his father Jainus calling him on his Chronic Hero Syndrome when he offers to help Yumil. While Jude says he has no problem helping Yumil, he tells his dad that they can't go risking their necks for a job (they're mercenaries) that either doesn't pay or pays little as they are working to support Chloe (Jainus' wife) and can't afford to play hero. The

    Web Comics 
  • Roy does this several times over the course of The Order of the Stick to his father's ghost, most recently in comic 500. Which ends up being a variation: Roy only gets to "You pathetic little—" before stopping himself, calming down, and explaining that he won't be bullied by his father anymore.
    • And strangely enough, it works better than any rant Roy could have attempted.
    • But he did it best in comic 293
      Roy: Yeah? Well, I think there may be a flaw in your plan, Dad, because... Well, because screw you.
      Roy: I just want you, personally, to know: If it weren't for the threat to the entire world, I would tell you to shove your 'blood oath' against Xykon up your wrinkled incorporeal ass.
    • When Elan finally realises what his father is he calls him out on causing the suffering of countless slaves, and when he learns that he fought and exiled Nale, not solely because he betrayed him, but because he did not do it the way Tarquin approved of, he draws his sword, outraged.
    • Haley gets in on it in the same arc after being reunited with her father. He raised her never to trust anyone except family, and she lets him know in no uncertain terms how close that came to wrecking her life.
    • Nale does this as well to his father. He frequently accuses him of having lost his nerve and just sitting around doing nothing with his power. Eventually he yells that he is his own person, not a cog in his schemes, and that he wants NOTHING from his father. And Tarquin kills him, saying that he would have been dead years ago if he hadn't been protecting him.
    • In response to the above, Elan does this again when Tarquin dismisses Nale as a B-villain that Elan had already outgrown. Elan furiously shouts that Nale wasn't just a plot element, he was Tarquin's son. He also points out that Tarquin is the one responsible for Nale growing up to be a crappy person.
  • Sluggy Freelance - Any time Riff and his mom are in the same room together. Still waiting for Zoe to do the same, though
  • Fairly early on in Sabrina Online, Sabrina tells her passive-aggressively controlling mother, Endora, gently, but in no uncertain terms to quit trying to control her life or sooner or later, she'll find herself completely shut out of her life.
  • In Flipside, Crest lets his former mentor, Orransong, know exactly why he dropped out of Knights of La-Shoar training: because he saw Orransong strike his (Crest's) blind mother for daring to question the Knights' prohibition against magic (magic that could've restored her sight years ago). That he was expected to emulate and uphold that sort of behavior was too much for Crest, and he lets Orransong know it, in so many words.
  • Roast Beef, after one insult too many from Grandma K, finally snaps at her for being a control freak and leaves her to take care of herself.
    Roast Beef: Old woman, listen to me. You have forbidden me from pleasure since the day I was born. Now I pay for this house and I pay for your wine. So as of this day I am the LAW and I am the LASH, do you hear me!?
  • Will Erixon of Fans! has a confrontation with his abusive wife murdering father after he gets sprung from jail as part of a greater conspiracy against him and his friends. To add insult to injury, after Will beats the bastard into the ground, he gets shot full of bullets by FIB agents, and then his corpse gets pistol whipped by Will's girlfriend Shanna.
  • Fred, who later becomes Monette's adoptive father, gives her derelict biological father a beautiful chewing out when the bastard shows up at the MacIntire residence for Thanksgiving and treats her terribly, in one arc of Something Positive.
    • And then there's Jason's father. When he shows up again, Jason remains dumbstruck, untill his father says he finds some form of physical greeting appropriate for a 'long lost parent'. Jason immediately punches him.
  • Dominic Deegan. Here, Miranda Deegan calls both of her parents out for their behavior (and their attacks) on Donovan for him being her choice of a future husband.
  • In The Dreamer, Freddy Knolwlton does this in issue #8, stands up to his father and voices his own opinions about the war, and the eventual burning of New York.
  • Butt Monkey Syphile from Drowtales gets what possibly may be her one and only moment of awesome in her entire life when she finally tells Quain'tana what a truly godawful mother she is. Then she gets killed. Ironically, her doing this is what finally earns her Quain'tana's respect.
  • In Goblin Hollow this occurs at Lily's family reunion with Ben and Lily's grandfather. The old man makes a threat to Ben to "get out of the picture or else". But Ben indeed DOES call the old man out, not once, but twice, with Ben telling the old bigoted codger that he won't tolerate him making threats.
    Ben: "When it comes to threats, don't bring a tomahawk to a shootout."
  • Mistress Sixx calls the old lady out in this page from Collar 6
  • In Misfile, Emily gets chewed out royally by her beloved smother for running away, and her friend Molly returns the favor (as she'd be leaving town soon anyway) while defending her.
  • In Endstone, Cole greets Jon with a punch because he used her against her own mother and caused her to be alone in the world.
  • In Kevin & Kell, the first time Lindesfarne appears together with Angelique, her adoptive mother until she divorced Kevin, is when Angelique hires her as a babysitter. Lindesfarne starts out unsure of whether she should continue calling her "Mother" like she used to, and then lays into her over being distant while raising her (resulting in Lindesfarne becoming a Well Done Daughter Gal), and then abandoning her. Later on, Rudy gets this with the memory of his deceased father after he learns that his rival Vin Vulpen is his half-brother on his father's side, meaning that his father had an affair ("So who do I turn to now for a moral, ethical male role model?"}.
  • Ame from Heart Core does this on a daily basis against her father Royce ever since that day when he forced her into a painful and permanently scarring ritual. She doesn't care if she gets denied Heartcores from humans, loses royal priviliges or gets locked into the castle dungeon. She just keeps defying and messing with him in every way possible just for the sake of getting any sort of payback at him.

    Web Original 
  • Firestorm's defining character trait seems to be that he hates his father Napalm in LessThanThee Comics' 'Brat Pack'. Firestorm has to be held back from attacking Napalm when he finds out they have to work together.
  • The Nostalgia Chick's (not Lindsay's) real father is a distant alcoholic who never gave her any love. She gets him back by gushing over manly overprotective Disney fathers like Mufasa and Triton.
  • I'm a Marvel... And I'm a DC's version of Harry Osborn seems to be less angsty and more bitter than in most incarnations; he's only ever heard when arguing with his father from off-screen.

    Western Animation 
  • In the King of the Hill episode "Death Picks Cotton", Peggy Hill finally gets to chew out her father-in-law, Cotton, for how much of a complete jerk he's been to his son (Hank) for all of his life. The kicker? She waits until he's on his deathbed to let him have it.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender :
  • In The Legend of Korra:
    • When Hiroshi Sato reveals that he's working for the Equalists, he spends quite a bit of time trying to get his daughter, Asami to undergo a Face-Heel Turn and join him. She refuses, repeatedly, before saying that his wife would have hated him for what he's become, and that he has no more room for love, he's so filled with hate. Even as he tries to kill his once beloved daughter, and she strikes him down, she's crying.
      Asami: You really are a horrible father.
    • In Amon/Noatak and Tarrlok's backstory both of them get a chance to do this. After being forced to bloodbend innocent animals and then each other by their father, Tarrlok refuses as says he doesn't want to do that to anyone. When their father (Yakkone) is about to attack him, Noatak calls him out too, and stops him from hurting his little brother.
  • Legion Of Superheroes: Timber Wolf was calling out his father twice in the series, the first time where he confronts him in the lab after the Legion helped restore his humanity (also counts as his CMOA), was when he points out that his father wasn't a good parent to him and destroys his lab, the second time he was Brainwashedand Crazy and was confronting him at a science convention in front of a huge audience, where he accuses him of manipulating people around him and experimenting on sentient beings as well as destroying their lives and families. This time he makes himself into a Self-Made Orphan.
  • Jackie Chan Adventures has Jackie's Hyde side doing this in one episode.
    Dark Jackie: Pull your tongue out of your mouth and wring out the spit.
    Uncle: (gasps) You call Uncle an eel!
  • In Justice League Unlimited, upon his resignation, Captain Marvel does this to his former idol Superman, citing how the man of steel and the team, or rather organization, as a whole have become infatuated with their power, distracted from their original purpose, and forgotten how to be heroes.
    • Invoked then derailed in Season 4's last episode, "Epilogue", which kept the title as it also served as the series ending for Batman Beyond; A grown Terry imagines himself reaming Bruce on his control issues and emotional distance. In the end, he doesn't actually go through with this.
  • Clay Puppington, Moral Orel's father, got double-whammied. Already a less-than-stellar father, in the second season's finale he sunk to new depths. He got progressively drunk throughout the day, went into a mad rant that night, accidentally shot Orel, blamed Orel for it, tore Orel's lucky shirt for a tourniquet, then drank the rubbing alcohol Orel had brought for exactly that kind of emergency. The drinking alone had gotten Orel to anxiously tell his father he didn't like it when Clay drank, but all the other stuff forced Cheerful Child Orel to utter the three magic words: "I hate you." Clay's response: "Hate away, Sister. Hate away..." The second whammy comes at the end of the third season's premiere, when we learn he overheard the tail-end of a conversation between Orel and his mother, in which Orel sincerely questioned why his mother married his father, and his wife dismiss Orel's claims that Clay became a different man when he drinks as "his true nature coming out." Clay got into bed soon after with an expression this troper hopes meant he was thinking "My God, What Have I Done?."
    • Most of the season tries to show Clay getting worse, up until finally the only man who cared for him decided to abandon him, forever dooming him to a miserable marriage, though his kids do grow up and have relatively happy lives.
  • The Teen Titans' Raven got in on the act, too, in her CMOA for the final act of "The End, Part 3." Anything else would be Spoileriffic.
    • Unless you read the comic it was based on, then you already know how it goes.
  • Earl of Lemongrab does this to Princess Bubblegum in the Adventure Time episode "You Made Me!", several times:
    Lemongrab: No one... No one understands! I am alone! And you made me like this! YOU MADE ME!!! YOOOU MAAADE MEEE!!! You're... my... glob! You're my glob!
    Lemongrab: It's gross! And who says your way's right, anyway? I look in the lemon heart you gave me and see my lemon way to act - and that must be right!
    Lemongrab: NO! No more helping! You unload your punkest boys on me?! Tryyy to change my ways?! YOU'RE POISON! YOU'RE POISON!!! YOU NEED RECONDITIONING!!! REEECONDITIIION YOOOU!!!
  • As mentioned above, the '90s Animated X-Men series condensed and distilled Cyclops' resentment of Corsair (originally a 3-issue-long storyline) into one Tear Jerker of a rant about his pre-Xavier school Dark and Troubled Past to a shamefaced Corsair, even as he helps him escape a crooked Shi'Ar cop so he can clear his name.
    • The time Magneto got called out by Wanda and Pietro, while they're kept as prisoners alongside Beast and Professor X. Up until then, neither the twins nor Magneto had an idea of this, and worse, the twins had just learned that the Maximoffs were only their adoptive parents. Yeah, that scene was just as sad as the former one.
  • Possibly, the final reaction of Timmy toward his parents near the end of the episode Freaks a Greeks in The Fairly OddParents.
    • Cosmo gets an awesome one against Mama Cosma in Apartnership.
    Cosmo: Let's get something straight! I'm not bright! Big words confuse me! I have the attention span of a rodent! But Wanda loves me anyway. She makes me happy and THAT SHOULD BE ENOUGH FOR YOU!
  • In American Dragon Jake Long, Jake gets fed up with his job after two years of endless mind-numbing training and threats, repeatedly getting grounded by his father (who isn't in on The Masquerade and thinks he's just been goofing off — which, to be fair, sometimes he is), and ultimately losing his girlfriend twice while still being expected to face all the trouble of youth with without any time to enjoy himself whatsoever and deliberately gets his responsibility removed so he can relax for the final week of middle school. The reins get passed to Haley, who at first claims she will do a far better job than her brother, but goes from a calm collected child genius to a frazzled, gibbering mess within days. When Haley overhears Lao Shi start to criticize Jake for being irresponsible and not flawlessly rising to the thankless job, she snaps and tongue-lashes him declaring that it might have been stupid, but it wasn't selfish for him to want to actually want to be a kid for a few days— generally considered her finest moment in the series.
    Haley: HEY! When's the last time either of you were the American Dragon? Well as the little troll girl currently filling the position, let me tell you it's stinkin' hard! I can't imagine doing it two more days let alone two more years. And to think about everything Jake's gone through; he's had to save magical creatures on a daily basis, lie to his own dad about who he is, say good-bye to the girl he loved, all to protect a mystical world that nobody knows about. He may be the American Dragon but he is also a 14 year old kid who just wanted a couple days off. If that makes him immature, fine, but self-serving? With all due respect to both of you, STEP OFF!!
  • Metalocalypse plays with this trope in season 1. The Bandmates are forced to deal with their overbearing parents/guardians who force them to spend quality time with them. When the band is confronted with the idea of a Family Album, they angrily state that they are the most brutal band in the world, and that their parents know nothing about being brutal. Suddenly, the trope becomes an Inversion and all the parents berate their kids for taking them for granted.
    Grandma Murderface: "You little bastards think you know about brutal? Let me tell you something, there is nothing NOTHING in this world more brutal than raising a child!"
    • Also briefly parodied with an absurd non-sequitir (par for the course, really, considering what show this is) in Skwisklok:
      Nathan Explosion: "I guess I always hated my father. But then Explosion Sauce changed all that. (*chugs barbecue sauce straight from the bottle*) Explosion Sauce: It's good on its own."
    • In "Motherklok," Pickles finally has enough of his mom's attitude and, after being told by just about everybody that he should tell her to go fuck herself, he finally does exactly that.
      Pickles: Hey mom? GO FUCK YOURSELF!
  • In Ōban Star-Racers, after Don Wei tells Molly that he knows that she's really his daughter, Eva, she unloads on him for abandoning her at a boarding school for most of her childhood (without so much as a letter) and not even recognizing her when she first joined the team.
  • In The Spectacular Spider-Man, Harry actually throws his father across the room in "The Uncertainty Principle," screaming that it was his fault that he took Globulin Green and became the Green Goblin. Harry doesn't go much farther with it, though, because Norman actually listens to him and starts acting like a decent father for once. Or at least, he seems to be...
  • Family Guy: In "Seahorse Seashell Party", Meg finally blows up at her family during a hurricane. While Lois gets attacked pretty hard, Peter gets the brunt of it. What she essentially says is that Lois is a callous jerk and Peter is a self-centered failure of a man.
  • In The Boondocks episode "The Color Ruckus" at his grandmother's funeral, Uncle Ruckus finally tells off his father for abusing him as a child and what a horrible father he was to him, this enrages him and he tries to smash a bottle on him. But his back gives out and he ends up falling into an open grave and breaking his neck.
  • In the Goof Troop episode "From Air to Eternity", Pete lies and says he's not afraid of heights and then belittles PJ for his lack of accomplishments, makes him feel insecure and inadequate about his own fear of heights, coerces him into dangerous stunts for his own profits, yells at him and insults him for doing them wrong, and shames and rejects him for "lying" because Pete made an incorrect assumption which PJ didn't know he needed to correct. Then PJ and Max discover that Pete is afraid of heights and lied to PJ, which meant what he did wasn't just needlessly cruel, it was also hypocritical. PJ is a bit too meek to call Pete out directly, but with Max's help, he manages to call Pete out indirectly by tricking him into confessing to the original transgression. PJ pretends to be surprised and shames his father with all the "new information that comes to light."
  • In the second episode of the original 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series, Shredder says the Turtles should join his forces because their existence as mutant ninjas is all due to him framing their master Hamato Yoshi and getting him banished from the Foot Clan, then following him to America with the purpose of finishing him off for good, which he attempted to do with the mutagen that did at least turn Yoshi into a mutant rat while giving the turtles their humanoid form. All the Turtles need for a response is one line from Raphael to sum up their feelings toward that:
    "Does the phrase 'go suck a lemon' hold any meaning for you?"
  • Late in Code Lyoko, Ulrich's emotionally and verbally abusive father shows up to talk to his son about his poor academic performance. Ulrich calmly tolerates his father's lecture until his father implies Ulrich's friends (the only people who keep the poor boy sane) are behind his poor grades. Ulrich is visibly angry and snaps that his father doesn't know his friends... or him for that matter. Then when it's revealed the team needs him, Ulrich stands to leave and rebuts his father's command of "I'm not done talking to you!" with "Yeah? Well, I'm done listening.", slamming the door on his way out. The fans were pleased.
  • In the Super Mario World episode "The Night Before Cave Christmas", Oogtar takes a peek at one of the presents King Koopa wrapped for the Koopa Kids. Upon discovering Koopa is giving Bob-ombs to his children for Christmas, Oogtar calls him out and laughs when the Bob-omb explodes in his face.
  • In The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy episode King Tooten Pooten, Irwin's mom Judy calls her father Poppin Lockin out for his cruel ways in the past and trying to make Irwin the next Pharaoh in his family instead of letting him decide what he wants to do. Irwin accepted being the Pharaoh when Poppin Lockin told him that Mandy would love him.
  • In the Batman Beyond episode "Inqueling", it's revealed that before her mutation, Inque gave birth to a daughter named Deanna, whom she subsequently gave up for adoption. When the two reunite in the show Inque explains that she had grown up poor and let herself become Inque all for the money, and she wanted to give her daughter an easier life with normal parents and a large trust fund. When Inque reveals just how much money she has, however, her daughter tries to kill her in order to get control of her bank accounts.
    Deanna: You never gave me anything except money, Mother. How did you expect me to turn out?


What the Hell, Hero?Blame Tropes    
Because I Said SoParental IssuesChocolate Baby
Calling Me a LogarithmInsult TropesCarload of Cool Kids
Cain and AbelOlder Than DirtCessation of Existence
Cain and AbelUnisex TropesCan't Hold His Liquor

alternative title(s): Calls The Old Man Out
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