A montage of a character (or characters) being killed repeatedly. Can be played for drama with multiple characters who die for good. In other cases this is done with the same character dying repeatedly, only to be brought back to life
for whatever reason (just to die again). The former often leads to Everybody's Dead, Dave
, while the latter is more often than not played as Black Comedy
because of the impermanence of the deaths.
Not to be confused with the Really Dead Montage
As a Death Trope, may have unmarked spoilers ahead. Beware.
Anime and Manga
- This happens a lot in the Death Note anime, when Light and the other Kiras go on killing sprees.
- In Best Picture-winner Cavalcade, World War I is illustrated with repeated shots of British soldiers marching under the same bridge, superimposed with repeated shots of individual soldiers getting shot and killed.
- Occurs in Groundhog Day, when Phil chooses to kill himself pretty much just to see if it will stick. It won't.
- In Revenge of the Sith, we see several Jedis get massacred by Clone troops.
- Goodfellas has one after Jimmy decides to cut off his connections to the Lufthansa heist by killing off everyone else involved. Especially memorable as the piano section of Derek and the Domino's ''Layla'' plays throughout the entire scene over Henry's narration.
- Casino closes most of its narrative with a very effective one, a great number of characters get taken care of to the music of The House of the Rising Sun.
- Forrest Gump explains Lt. Dan was from a long military tradition. Then we see a montage of Gary Sinise (the actor playing Lt. Dan) playing a different ancestor just at the moment of his death, in a different battleground, with a war uniform more modern that the last.
- Played for laughs in Get Smart. Chief says that the identities of every CONTROL agent has been compromised, and we cut to a shot of all the CONTROL agents dropping like flies in some of the most hilarious ways possible.
- Also played for laughs in The Incredibles, to explain why wearing a cape will inevitably lead to a Cape Snag, and why Edna Mode is very, VERY adamant about her "NO CAPES!" policy. And to be clear, these are deaths. The database on every hero in the Special Features disc for the DVD does confirm they all died due to "Suit Malfunctions."
- The Wrong Box starts with a montage of various tontine members meeting grisly and hilarious ends, setting up the film's premise wherein only two are left.
- The Many Deaths of Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt in the "Groundhog Day" Loop war movie Edge of Tomorrow. Sometimes played for laughs (usually Cruise), sometimes for drama (usually Blunt).
- Mortal Kombat has multiple Kombatants dropping like flies when Shang Tsung decides to unleash Goro on the tournament.
- In the "Groundhog Day" Loop episode of Supernatural, we are treated to a series of Dean's deaths in increasingly unlikely and frankly, hilarious ways.
- Played for drama in an episode of House where recipients of someone's organs all died at approximately the same time and their deaths are played rapid-fire in The Teaser.
- A variation in Torchwood: Miracle Day when the immortal Captain Jack Harkness is tied up in a basement and killed over and over - except it's not just a montage; he really is being killed that many times per minute.
- Happens in the alternate universe episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer called "The Wish", where Oz stakes Willow, Angel gets staked by Xander, Buffy stakes Xander, and then the Master kills Buffy. Then the wish is reversed and the audience suffers Mood Whiplash.
- VERY dramatic example in Doctor Who "Journey's End" when Davros reminds the Doctor of the number of people who have died helping him. It's a lengthy montage even though it only includes deaths in New Who.
- The fifth season of Breaking Bad has the simultaneous assassination of all eight of Fring's former employers currently in jail.
- The famous ending montage of Six Feet Under shows how all the main characters die in the future.
- Season 9 of Red vs. Blue has a non-fatal example, showing York and the Freelancer's numerous "deaths" in a training match against Tex.
- The final part of the original Natraps X video, "Rockmad," shows Rockman losing all his numerous lives to Sylvia, Princess Peach and other video game characters. The deaths continue in the sequel video, "Silvia ga Taosenai."
- The Venture Bros. has one when it is revealed that the boys are clones, and have died over a dozen times before. Humorously, one of the deaths was a gas leak that hit while they were asleep, which is neither exciting to look at or interesting to hear about.
- Transformers Animated has one when Starscream discovers he is immortal and attempts to overthrow Megatron... only to fail repeatedly.
- Poor Batman suffers through this in Batman: The Brave and the Bold's Lighter and Softer Animated Adaptation of Emperor Joker. Throughout this montage he gets crushed by a giant hammer, dropped into the Acid Pool, incinerated to ashes by a flamethrower, Chained to a Railway and run over by a train, guillotined, Eaten Alive by a Threatening Shark, etc. And at each painful, comedic death he goes through, The Joker brings him back to life only to kill him again. It is not until the Dark Knight gets worn out from all the deaths he endured that the new Clown Emperor decides not to kill him again, as his repeated killings start getting rather boring.
- Anton of The Amazing World of Gumball is subject to a death montage in "The Recipe" when Gumball and Darwin repeatedly kill him to figure out how he keeps coming back.
- Played for Laughs in The Simpsons' Treehouse of Horror segment "Wanted: Dead, Then Alive", a few weeks after Bob has killed Bart with a Harpoon Gun, the villain realizes that it's not Bart's death that makes him happy, and that he would be truly happy if he kills Bart again. To remedy this, he creates a Reanimator machine and uses it to bring his longtime Arch-Enemy Back from the Dead so that he can kill Bart again and again, in a manner worthy of the aforementioned Emperor Joker adaptation. And all his methods are: whacking him with a sledgehammer not once but many times in the manner of Monty Python and the Holy Grail; blowing his head clean off, feeding him to a lion; squashing him flat by a steamroller, then folding him into a paper plane before throwing him into a Deadly Rotary Fan, then picking up his pieces and tossing them into the cremation furnace; handing him a shockingly expensive electric bill for the Reanimator that induces a Hollywood Heart Attack; liquefying him into juice (which has happened offscreen); and hacking him into pieces with an axe (also happened offscreen). And all of this is set to Elvis Costello's "Accidents Will Happen".
- Many challenge Let's Players tend to tack on at the end of their successful run videos a bunch of outtakes or deaths, usually in a montage like fashion.