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"Some delicacies are not to be savored, save by the callous."

So a character relishes in the outcomes of their evil actions. Maybe they stew in their own evil juices. Perhaps they are the kind that has a menu of dastardly deeds to choose from, or maybe they've just got a select few on speed dial to take-out.

I'm hungry. We got anything eeeeeevil to eat? Yes, Reptiles Are Abhorrent, but that's just for a pet. Or my Final Form. There's no evil animals? Damn, I'll have to do the next best thing: eat something that makes me more evil for even thinking it.

Bad people thus eat the meat of exotic animals, especially those that are endangered. The concept is generally that they are so heartless, they would help a species go extinct or sink their teeth into something that's generally considered a rare beauty, when they could just as easily get some chips. Fridge Logic issues as to how they'd know how to cook an exotic animal they'd never tried before, or that it wouldn't taste like crap, seldom come up.

Since different cultures and ethnic groups have different food cultures and food taboos, this trope is often invoked in propaganda to either lampoon or demonize opposing groups.

Overlaps quite nicely with the Evil Poacher, and is often the meal of the Card-Carrying Villain. For the clothing equivalent, see Fur and Loathing.


Examples

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    Card Games 

    Comics 
  • In the Dilbert comic, Dilbert was once temporarily transferred to Marketing, which appears to be a 24-7 Toga party. Lunch that day is barbecued unicorn.
    Dilbert: (staring at the unicorn horn on a bun) I don't think this is really the "best part".
  • The futuristic setting of Transmetropolitan allows for many (usually vat-grown) delicacies such as caribou eyes or "Leg of Bastard" (that is, human). Some humanitarians prefer to save money by catching door-to-door political canvassers or other easy prey.

    Films — Live Action 
  • The Protector has the bad guys running a restaurant with meals like this. When they served the main character's elephant as a main course, that went a bit too far. Sending him the bill didn't help...
  • In the film The Freshman (not that one) with Matthew Broderick and Marlon Brando, the evil, jaded rich people regularly dined on endangered animals as a thrill. Or at least, they thought what they were eating were endangered animals.
  • From the Disney version of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea comes the following:
    Captain Nemo: Eat your pudding, Mr. Land.
    Ned Land: I ain't sure it's puddin'.
    (Ned cautiously samples his "pudding" and seems to enjoy it)
    Ned Land: What is it?
    Captain Nemo: It's my own recipe: sauté of unborn octopus.
    • Subverted a bit here, as Nemo is more of an egomaniac than actually evil, and the original story makes it quite clear that Nemo's whole point with the odd meal is that there's no real need for land-based farming, as the sea is perfectly capable of supplying good-tasting and nutritious food.
    • Also subverted in the novel, in which the Nautilus crew collect milk from a whale for their own consumption, but one that they found freshly-dead rather than killed themselves.
  • The David Lynch film adaptation of Dune had an inexplicable throwaway scene of Rabban crushing a live mouse in a small device and then drinking the resulting mess with a straw. Yes, the man is generally referred to as "The Beast Rabban", but still.... subtle, Lynch.

    Literature 
  • The Patrician in the very first Discworld book, The Colour of Magic, dined on candied jellyfish. Strangely enough, Word of God says that this is actually Lord Vetinari, perhaps written by a younger and less experienced author (in later books, he eats only bread and water).
    • The unnamed crazy gluttonous Patrician in The Colour of Magic almost exactly matches later descriptions of Mad Lord Snapcase, Vetinari's predecessor, and in fandom's consensus is Snapcase. He might've indeed been the original Pratchett's image of Vetinari, but it's evident that the character was heavily retooled for the Watch subseries. Apparently, the original fat and crazy Patrician lost the Vetinari's name and became Mad Lord Snapcase, while Vetinari became the Magnificent Bastard we all know and love.
    • Also, jellyfish is neither exotic (at least in some places on Earth), nor endangered. Jellyfish salad is a common hors d'oevre in Chinese cuisine, and jellyfish biomass is species-wise comparable with true fish.
  • Hagrid comments that in the Harry Potter-verse, only the evil or desperate harm or eat a Unicorn. Voldemort had his reasons, but the implication is that others had done it too.
    • His own cooking may not be evil, but it still seems somewhat strange, i.e stoat sandwiches.
  • Scott Adam's Clues for the Clueness: Dogbert's Big Book of Manners has a sort of nonvillainous example (Dogbert's evil but Dilbert isn't): According to Dogbert, it's customary to order the most expensive entrees when ordering a meal on your company's tab.
    Dogbert: I'll have the endangered species kabob.
    Dilbert: I'll have the Bigfoot sirloin grilled over moonrocks.
  • One Remo The Destroyer book featured an authentic dinosaur. The Corrupt Corporate Executive who organized its capture and transport to America planned to use it for an "Authentic dino burger" marketing scheme. Admittedly the majority of the "authentic" burgers would be fake, but they did honestly plan to make processed meat out of the zoological find of the century. Remo killed them.
  • In the Narnia book The Silver Chair, it is discovered that the venison served at the table of the "Friendly Giants" came from a Talking Stag. The author notes that for anyone of Narnian culture, this is the equivalent of cannibalism. If that weren't enough, the characters later find out they are on the menu for the following night.
  • In the Doctor Who Expanded Universe novel St. Anthony's Fire, the Big Bad offers the Doctor candied baby cheeks. After torturing a kitten in an earlier scene.
    • Kind of played with in The Infinity Doctors: The Big Bad mocks the Doctor for sticking to vegetarianism in a world created by the minds of the inhabitants by offering him minotaur steak and dragon soup. The Doctor feels this is missing the point.
  • A Batman short story has Batman and Penguin united in putting a stop to a club where rich people eat endangered birds.
  • In Oryx and Crake and the companion novel The Year of the Flood, there is a restaurant called Rarity which is supposedly named that because they have the right sanitary practices to serve rare meat, but in fact have a back-room business in the meat of endangered or extinct animals.
  • Rick's, a restaurant in the Nightside, specializing in meals made from extinct or imaginary animals. Not as bad as most examples, as the Nightside is a nexus for hundreds of alternate and fantastic worlds, so Rick can presumably procure his meats from worlds where the animals in question are abundant.
  • The Neil Gaiman short story "Sunbird" follows a society of epicureans that pursues only the rarest meals. They don't seem to delight in suffering, but do take pride in the fact that they may be eating something right off the face of the earth. Trying to sample phoenix doesn't go as they expect...

    Live Action TV 
  • Angel has an episode where the villains are a club who like to dine on werewolves. Note that every werewolf is a human with a curse, and the curse dissipates (returning the werewolf to human form) when the werewolf dies.
  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit has a character with an animal smuggling ring, whose members ate several of the animals. The first animal shown prepared definitely didn't get a Gory Discretion Shot.
  • In the Red Dwarf episode "Out of Time", the crew's evil future selves use their time machine to travel through history, eating delicacies like dolphin sweetmeats and baby seal hearts with hosts such as Louis XVI and Adolph Hitler.
  • The Goodies: In "Dodonuts", Bill attempts to stop Tim and Graeme from hunting and eating the last dodo.
  • In the Supernatural season 9 episode "Dog Dean Afternoon", a chef has learned hoodoo, and uses it to eat animal parts and take on their powers, in an effort to stave off lung cancer. Of course, he gets eaten alive by dogs by the end of the episode.
  • In the Hannibal episode "Ko No Mono", Hannibal and Will eat traditionally-prepared ortolan (a protected species of bird) while discussing their shared Humanitarian Interests.

    Music 
  • In the Capitol Steps' "Loonies of the Right," Bob Dole sings:
    How we love the endangered spotted owl
    In a cream sauce, it's a tasty little fowl

    Tabletop Games 
  • The Arduin Grimoire IV (The Lost Grimoire): Dirty Dorg's restaurant (a haven for evil creatures) has a menu featuring the meat of various monsters, including those of good-aligned creatures such as unicorn and hobbit.
  • One old D&D supplement full of many very short adventures included one in which the source of steaks being served at a newly-popular inn turns out to be either unicorns or purple worms, depending on the DM's preferences. The latter aren't sentient, but they were "harvested" by sawing segments off the rear ends of still-living worms.
  • It's not unheard of for the more extreme members of Ashwood Abbey from Hunter: The Vigil to eat, drink the blood of, or make drugs out of supernatural creatures.

    Theatre 
  • Variation: In Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mamma's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feelin' So Sad, Madame Rosepettle insists on a diet of nothing but Siamese cats for Rosalinda, her silver piranha fish. She is outraged that one of her bellboys has fed a common alley cat to Rosalinda, and waves aside the objection that there were no Siamese cats in the vicinity.

    Video Games 

    Web Comics 
  • The Order of the Stick: Official banquets in the Empire of Blood include dishes such as phoenix pâté (with liver taken from the still-living bird, since phoenixes burst into flames when dying) and pegasus flank. Even though the diner is in his honor, Elan loses appetite very fast.

    Web Original 
  • In Ramenz mocumentary on Japanese sushi, they suggest asking the chef for "off-menu" recommendations. Then they pan across various meats on the sushi bar, some obscured with pixelation, while cutting away to photos of various protected species of animals.

    Western Animation 
  • One episode of the Ace Ventura cartoon has a Villainous Glutton who is kidnapping endangered species as part of a planned seven-course meal.
  • On Futurama, just to show how messed up the future is, some animals not considered food today, are eaten regularly, like parrots. Not dolphins though, since they're intelligent. Unless they blow all their money on lottery tickets, then it's OK.
    • It should be noted beverages made from humans are also prominent, which shouldn't be surprising given the number of suicide booths there are. And then there's the Executive Powder.
    • Of course, in the Futurama future, rats are endangered and spotted owls are pests.
    • Human noses are apparently both an exotic treat and an aphrodisiac. This trope was invoked during a in-universe news report. However, it turns out that the reason why they went for the nose was because the aliens thought the noses were the genitals.
  • Jackie Chan Adventures had this in the episode where the cast found the Rabbit Talisman. On an endagered Tortoise that a villain was planning to dine upon.
  • The film The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists has this as a recreational hobby for all the world's leaders. Queen Victoria somewhat uses this in an Eviler than Thou speech aimed at the Pirate Captain.
  • One villain in The Secret Saturdays only wants to eat cryptids.
    • Another minor character ate panda dumplings.


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