"To see him obviously framedFraming someone means providing fake evidence in order to falsely prove someone guilty of a crime. "Frame" here means making someone innocent look guilty by "putting the person in a picture frame of suspicion". Of course, it results in a need for the Hero to Clear My Name. If the hero has to clear someone else who has been wrongfully accused of a crime, it's Clear Their Name. Framing the Guilty Party is a subtrope where the party framed is actually guilty. It can be a Subversion or even a Double Subversion of the classic Frame-Up depending on the convolutions of apparent and actual guilt. In a similar vein, in Noir-themed crime dramas the frame can be rehung many times: a white-knuckle version of pass-the-parcel. If the framed party is an animal, This Bear Was Framed. If the framed party is dead, then it's a Deceased Fall-Guy Gambit. If the accuser turns out to be right by complete accident, it may overlap with Accidental Truth and Right for the Wrong Reasons. As for WHY someone was framed, the most common reason is because it was to ruin the reputation of a rival, someone whom they think is a bad influence, or someone with good publicity who has not been very good to them. However outright murdering them (even if it's meant to look like an accident) would make them a martyr in the eyes of the public and might make things worse for the culprit. See also: Taking the Heat, where an innocent person attempts to put himself in the frame to save someone else, False Flag Operation, where it is an entire organization or nation that is being framed by another, Then Let Me Be Evil, when the framing eventually drove the innocent person into evil, especially what exactly they were framed for, and Mistaken for Murderer, where the misleading evidence arises out of unplanned circumstances. Compare and contrast Abomination Accusation Attack, where the accusation just mentions a type of crime, not any specific instance. Certain forms of a Motivational Lie can be related in spirit.
Couldn't help but make me feel ashamed to live in a land
Where justice is a game."
Couldn't help but make me feel ashamed to live in a land
Where justice is a game."
— Bob Dylan, "Hurricane"
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Anime & Manga
- In Akagami no Shirayukihime Mitsuhide is framed as being responsible for the attacks on Kiki's suitors. Everyone who knows him realizes that this accusation is insane but he is arrested and forced to hand over his sword anyway. The reason he was chosen to be framed was unexpected in the end, even after Zen, Kiki, Obi and Hisame know for sure who it was that caused the attacks they still fall for the pretense that it was about who would marry Kiki, the sole heir of a very powerful noble family, when the aim was to separate Kiki and Mitsuhide from prince Zen and replace them with retainers loyal to the guilty party so they could quietly assassinate him.
- In Billy Bat Oswald is set up as JFK's assassin, thanks to three doubles.
- In the "Wordsmith" whodunnit arc of Black Butler, Ciel and Sebastian frame a blood diamond/arms smuggler for the death of a German ship builder who would've made his country's navy more powerful than it should've been at the time. Sebastian's death was just a "joke" by Victoria, who didn't like Ciel's "prank" of completely burning the last Big Bad and his unsuspecting henchmen and victims.
- In Blade & Soul Alka is accused by Palam of murdering her master.
- One of Cat's Eye enemies once framed them for murder. The police saw through this easily (he had described Cat's Eye as tall men, while the police already knew they were women), but played along to both gather more evidence against him (they had already arrested him once for theft of some of Heintz's paintings and arson, but the evidence disappeared and the higher ups had ordered him free) and to try to get the girls careless, only moving for the arrest when they had enough evidence to pin him with murder, perjury and attempted murder of the Cats and after Ai decided she had enough of his shit and started tossing armored dogs around.
- Deadman Wonderland begins with Ganta being framed for slaughtering everyone in his class, complete with a doctored recording of him confessing and bragging about the deed.
- This happens a lot in Detective Conan, the murderers make fake proofs to frame up innocent people.
- Similarly in The Kindaichi Case Files a lot of murder rely on this. This was even done by Kindaichi (albeit, not a murder case), of all people!
- In Dragon Ball Super, Barry Khan, a super-vain actor, attempts to frame Gohan with cheating on Videl with the actress Cocoa. Unlike most examples, Videl sees through his BS and promptly shuts him down with "The Reason You Suck" Speech.
- In Hell Girl Two Mirrors, Takuma is suspected of killing his father, who was murdered by another man. Unfortunately, the murderer was Dragged Off to Hell just before the police could even see him. That event gives the poor Takuma the nickname "Devil Child". And because of his reputation, the other citizens frame him up whenever they send someone to hell with the Hell Correspondence.
- InuYasha: Naraku has tried to frame Inuyasha for his own crimes on three separate occasions: the murder of Kikyo, the destruction of Sango's hometown, and the slaughter of Koga's pack. After initially attacking Inuyasha in retribution, all three soon discover Naraku's involvement and promptly focus their efforts on him.
- The Great Cleanup in Mob Psycho 100 starts with Student Council members Shinji and Ritsu hiding girls' recorder mouthpieces in the desk and bags of local delinquent leader Tenga, getting him labeled as a pervert and driven out of school.
- Rosario + Vampire: In his introductory arc, Gin sets Tsukune up to look like The Peeping Tom to cover his own trail; while Moka easily falls for it, Kurumu and Yukari play detective and manage to expose Gin as the real peeper to the entire school.
- In the series The Seven Deadly Sins where the main group, Seven Deadly Sins were framed for killing the Great Holy Knight and Gilthunder's father, Zaratras, and trying to overthrow the kingdom. It's not yet known who framed them but it's either a Holy Knight or a traitor amongst the Sins.
- In Starzinger, ex-Jerk Ass Jan Kogo is framed by some villains with time-freezing powers for destroying a spaceship where a bunch of girls were escaping from their doomed planet. It almost works, but Kogo's companion Djorgo realizes that Kogo would NOT fall that low and decides to investigate... Turns out it was a demon lord who happened to get lucky, possessing a high-level general.
- Underdog: The Serial Killer Hiyuchi's first action in the tournament is to steal the protagonist Naoto's wallet so that he can plant it on the body of a high school girl Hiyuchi just murdered. He then breaks into Naoto's house to place her student ID on his desk.
- In Vinland Saga Canute has this done to Ketil and his son, to take over his farm, who is one of the most prosperous in the region.
- Batman, or rather Bruce Wayne, has to deal with this in Bruce Wayne Murderer and Bruce Wayne: Fugitive after his ex-girlfriend Vesper Fairchild is found dead in Wayne Manor. Lex Luthor hired the assassin David Cain to frame Bruce Wayne for a murder after Bruce ruined his scheme to acquire Gotham's real estate in the aftermath of No Man's Land. The frame-up goes even further than that, though: when Cain deduced that Bruce and Batman are one and the same, he also planted fake evidence suggesting that Vesper discovered Bruce's secret and was about to expose him. This actually makes some of Bruce's allies (except Dick and Alfred, who remain convinced that Bruce is innocent) briefly suspect that Bruce snapped and killed Vesper to hide his secret. The story arc goes on for as long as it does because Bruce doesn't even try to clear his name; rather, he uses this as an opportunity to ditch his identity as Bruce Wayne and become Batman full-time.
- Invoked in Birthright: A mage disguised as a FBI agent tries to capture Mikey Rhodes (who is pursuing him and his associates) with a SWAT team. When they fail to bring him, the mage then incinerates the whole group, hoping to pin their brutal murders on Mikey and turn him into a national-level terrorist.
- Judge Dredd: Early on in The Day the Law Died arc, Dredd is framed by the corrupt SJS Judge Cal(igula) for murdering several citizens. Dredd is sentenced and shipped to Titan, but he escapes the transport and clears his name by finding and destroying the robot duplicate that Cal secretly used.
- Manor de Sade starts out with the protagonist bragging to herself about how she managed to advance in her career by backstabbing his boss with a trumped-up accusation of sexual harassment. He had simply been friendly, but she had pretended to feel harassed. This resulted in him getting fired and her getting his job, just as she had planned. Only the audience (and her mirror) gets to know the truth. Or maybe not.
- Preacher: Cassidy finds himself in a Serial Killer's apartment just as the cops bust down the door (both sent by the real killer). He gets out of it by stabbing himself in the neck, and is taken out with the rest of the corpses, bumming a cigarette off the morgue employee and leaving. Being a vampire can have advantages.
- Robin: When Cass was drugged and brainwashed she killed Lynx and framed Robin for the murder by using his R shaped batarangs.
- In Robyn Hood: I Love NY, the mysterious Big Bad frames Robyn for the murder of a columnist who had been very vocal is his criticism of her.
- Runaways: The Pride frame their kids for all their own murders in an attempt to get them to come back to them. Amazingly, it doesn't help their case.
- In Sherwood, Texas, Rob and the Jesters frame Gisburn so that the Nobles think that he is The Mole who is betraying their operations.
- Sin City has two protagonists framed: Marv and John Hartigan. In a rare Gang War example, Dwight framed one crime family for attacking another in order to protect the Old Town girls.
- Done to Spider-Man on a disturbingly regular basis, and considering his own reputation as a Hero with Bad Publicity, it's not at all a surprise that villains would try and frame him as a bad guy so often.
- Hobgoblin twice does this framing innocent peoples as Hobgoblin's true identity. The first time with Flash Thompson as revenge for insult the villain on television. Later with Ned Leeds that is Brainwashed and Crazy in believe to be Hobgoblin.
- In X-Men Noir, Anne-Marie Rankin framed Captain Logan for the murder of Jean Grey by killing her with Wolverine Claws. However, between this and the Orgy of Evidence she provided, Thomas Halloway had her figured for the killer almost immediately.
- Disney Mouse and Duck Comics: A peculiar one in the story "The League of The Zombies" (1994) by writer Bob Langhans. Throughout the story Mickey Mouse sees monsters (specifically zombies) than nobody else can see. He has strange and humiliating things happen to him, and people do not believe him. An increasing number of characters are convinced that Mickey is hallucinating and/or going crazy. The situation is specifically set up by the Phantom Blot to convince the public that the famous detective has gone mad. The rest of the Blot's plan is killing someone close to Mickey and framing Mickey for the murder, counting on the public's belief that Insane Equals Violent.
- Frank Miller's RoboCop, based on Frank Miller's original RoboCop 2 script sees Dr. Love and the Rehabs have Sgt. Reed killed, Kong as RoboCop 2 massacre a subway station, and blame Murphy for both to discredit him.
- Modesty Blaise: As the title indicates, "The Murder Frame" involves a particularly expert frame job that puts Willie in the frame for murder. He goes on the run and he and Modesty have to employ all of their resourcefulness—plus the aid of some friends in high (and low) places—to prove his innocence and bring the true culprits to justice.
- Used in some The Brothers Grimm stories:
- Clouded Sky protagonist Tobias Talltree is at one point framed for stealing and abusing another Guide's Pokémon.
- In Death Note fanfic If It's Not Me, It's You, Light, after giving up his memories of the Death Note, comes up with a theory that Ryuzaki is Kira and framed him for it.
- The Tainted Grimoire has two separate instances.
- Crockett was framed for poisoning Micaiah.
- An innocent man named Hans was framed for poaching.
- Dirty Sympathy have Klavier, disguised as Kristoph, helps Olga Orly kill Shadi Enigmar in self-defense and pin the blame on his brother. Apollo frames Daryan for the murder of Romein LeTouse after his Batman Gambit on Machi killed the wrong man.
- In Book 2 of Event Horizon: Storm of Magic, the Company has VIDI kill King Theodred and plant evidence to make it look like Grima Wormtongue did it.
- In the Alternate Universe Worm fanfic Intrepid, Vociferous uses Shadow Stalker's powers and appearance to break into the Rig, poison Piggot, and kill Armsmaster.
- The Unabridged Memoirs of Darth Plagueis the Wise: Plagueis uses his connections to frame Chancellor Farr for embezzling funds from a relief organization and diverting them to a Rim Liberation Front-aligned group on his homeworld, thus leading to his impeachment and weakening the Republic even further.
- ...And Justice for All: Jeff had the knife which a guard was stabbed with planted in his cell, leading him to be sentenced to five years in prison.
- Babes in Toyland: When Barnaby frames Tom-Tom from Pig-Napping Little Elmer.
- A unique case in Beyond a Reasonable Doubt as author Tom has himself framed for murder in order to expose how the system can get the wrong man. However, it turns into a classic case of Gone Horribly Right as the only person who knew the truth is killed before he can provide the evidence of what's happened and thus Tom faces the electric chair.
- The Bullfighters had a flashback when Richard K. Muldoon was framed for a crime he did not commit. And was upset that the boys ruined his life. Now, He threatens to skin them alive.
- In Crooked House, the murderer stages a very effective frame-up of Brenda and Laurence; creating some extremely damning evidence and carefully leading Charles to it in such a way that it seems like he discovered it. It probably would have stuck if they had not committed another murder.
- The Crush: When Nick refuses her advances, Darien frames him for raping her, which results in his arrest and losing his job.
- Disclosure: Tom Sanders is passed on his expected promotion as vice president of Digicom by his ex-lover Meredith Johnson. She invites him to a meeting in her office later that day under the pretense of discussing recent problems with a CD-Rom drive and instead aggressively sexually harasses him (seemingly interested in reviving their former relationship), and he ultimately turns her down. The next day, he discovers she has falsely accused him of the harassment, which puts his career and family life in jeopardy. Turns out she did this in order to distract him to actually frame him with the CD-drive problems, considering she changed and sabotaged the production line, which was his responsibility. In short, she framed him for the sake of just cutting costs to appease the ongoing merger.
- Two of the leads in Down by Law end up in prison due to this.
- Extreme Measures: Luthan has medical cocaine planted in his apartment when it's broken into by the dirty cops, to get him arrested and fired from the hospital so he can't investigate the disappearances further.
- Firewall: Bill Cox proceeds to frame Jack for the bank robbery, leaving a false motive for his bank that he is a gambler, and even after he plans on killing the family and ordered Jack to be killed, he proceeds to frame the wife for having an affair with Harry and framing Jack for killing him in a jealous rage.
- Subverted in Framed, because the title would make you expect it to happen but it doesn't. (At least according to the review at Something Awful.)
- The Fugitive revolves around Richard Kimble trying to prove his innocence, after escaping from the crashed prison bus that was transporting him to death row after being convicted of murdering his wife.
- In The Hand That Rocks the Cradle, the villain Peyton considers it convenient to get rid of Solomon. So she steals the panties of their employer's five-year-old daughter and plants them in his room. With this "evidence" in place, she starts accusing him of pedophilia.
- The Hurricane, 1999 American biographical film starring Denzel Washington as Rubin "Hurricane" Carter.
- An Innocent Man has main character James Rainwood framed by two DirtyCops after they raid his house by mistake due to mixing it up with a drug dealer's, to cover themselves, and must then clear his name.
- In the first Legally Blonde movie, Elle Woods' client is a fitness guru who maintains innocence of killing her husband to get ahold of his business assets. In the climax of the trial she questions the stepdaughter, about the day of the murder, and reveals that she was taking a shower after a hair treatment. Elle then says that showering within 24 hours of the treatment would have neutralized and washed off the active ingredient. Further questioning reveals that the stepdaughter was disgusted with her father marrying someone as young as her, and on the day of the murder, she planned on ambushing her stepmother, but ended up killing her father.
- Minority Report starts as John Anderton thinks he was set up when the Precogs see a vision of him committing a murder 2 days later. When he arrives, it turns out that the victim himself is being framed, with many pictures of Anderton's disappeared son to rope Anderton into killing him. He tries arresting the victim instead, but since the guy's family would be handsomely paid if he died, he commits Suicide by Cop. Danny Witwer names the trope Orgy of Evidence in response to the crime scene, but a little later, Anderton is framed for Witwer's murder when the Big Bad shoots him with Anderton's gun.
- In Napoléon, Pozzo di Borgo agrees to fabricate evidence for Saliceti when the latter wishes to accuse Napoleon of espionage.
- Payback: Porter takes care of two corrupt police officers with this method. He shoots a man with a gun with Cop A's fingerprints (which he leaves at the scene), then plants Cop B's badge (which he had earlier stolen) on the corpse.
- In Road House, Jefty frames Pete for grand larceny and presses charges against him. Jefty then convinces the judge to make him Pete's parole officer, so he can control Pete’s every move and make sure he doesn’t run away with Lily.
- RoboCop 3 sees Rehab commander Paul McDaggett publicly blame his murder of Murphy's partner, Lewis, on Murphy himself.
- A lighter version in Shall We Dance? (1937): Desperate to keep musical star Linda from marrying an Upper-Class Twit and retiring from the stage, her penniless producer frames her for being already secretly married to Peter, a ballet dancer. He does this by sneaking into Peter's hotel suite with a wax dummy of Linda (made for one of her stage shows), photographing a scene that appears to be Linda in a nightgown hovering over her sleeping husband, and then sending the photographs to the newspapers.
- Played With and played straight by the titular Serial Killer of The Snowman (2017). The first time he murders a detective who is getting too close by blowing his head off with a shotgun and leaving his Calling Card of a snowman behind (playing the head of a snowman on the remain of his victims neck) but as the body is not discovered until after the snow had melted and since the detective in question was largely disliked by the incompetent police that found him, it was written off as a suicide. Years later the killer, having realis=zed this happened, murders another man in the same style and frames him intentionally, this time leaving some of the mutilated remains of his victims in the man's home for good measure.
- Talk of the Town involves an unscrupulous mill owner burning down his mill for the insurance and framing Leopold Dilg (Cary Grant), who was blowing the whistle about unsafe mill conditions.
- The Thin Blue Line is a documentary of the Real Life case of Randall Adams, framed by the Dallas police for the murder of one of their own by a teenage boy.
- In Tragedy Girls, this is basically Sadie and McKayla's Evil Plan: go on a killing spree, report on their own murders for their website, thus achieving international fame, and then pin the blame for the killings on Lowell, who they're currently holding hostage. Of course, Lowell is a Serial Killer, too, so it's not like he's an innocent in all this. While it doesn't go quite as smoothly as they anticipated, the plan works. The last scene shows that the cops did indeed blame Lowell, who is by then too dead to care.
- In True Believer it turns out that Shu Kai Kim was framed to protect a confidential informant by the district attorney and police.
- In The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll, after killing Littauer, Hyde stages a struggle and frames Jekyll for his crimes.
- Vabank is about an elaborate frame-up of Kramer, who actually does regularly steal from people, just in much less showy ways than what they nail him for.
- In Watchmen, Rorschach is framed for the murder of Moloch.
- In Whirlpool, Korvo uses hypnoses to frame Ann Sutton for the murder of Teresa.
- Who Framed Roger Rabbit: As the title indicates, Roger is framed for the murder of Marvin Acme.
- In Who's That Girl, as seen in the Animated Credits Opening, Simon Worthington's lackeys Raoul and Benny kill Nikki Finn's boyfriend Johnny, stuff him in the back of Nikki's car, and make it look like Nikki had killed him in a crime of passion.
- Dashiell Hammett's detective The Continental Op treats all investigations as a frame-up: he gathers evidence, discovers likely victims, and then attempts to get one into the frame. If they are guilty, then that's nice but incidental to getting paid.
- The Crowner John Mysteries: In Crowner's Quest, the conspirators frame John for rape so he can be tried in a Kangaroo Court and executed.
- The backstory of the Dr. Thorndyke novel Mr. Pottermack's Oversight involves a bank clerk being framed for a series of forgeries that were actually committed by one of his colleagues.
- In Speaking with the Dead by Elaine Cunningham (Realms of Mystery) Elaith Craulnober (of all people) was accused of a murder but swore that he didn't do it. And Danilo Thann (of all people) had to defend him...
Danilo: Consider my dilemma. Even under the best of circumstances, "innocent" is not the first word that comes to mind when your name is mentioned.
- In Gone Girl, the plot centers around a man being framed for the murder of his wife. Framed by whom, you may ask? By the wife herself.
- In At All Costs, the Republic of Haven is framed for several assassinations. This is so successful that it prevents the peace talks from happening, which leads to the biggest battle in the entire series of books, with the Manticore system itself under attack.
- In Last Sacrifice, Rose is framed for the murder of Queen Tatiana Ivashkov.
- In The Machine Gunners, Chas McGill tries to place his school rival and fellow war souvenir collector, Boddser Brown, at the top of the police's list of suspects for having stolen a downed bomber's rear-turret gun by specifically mentioning Brown and the things Chas knows Brown got from the same downed bomber in an essay.
- In Pact, Duncan Behaim frames Blake Thorburn for the murder of an eight-year-old boy by the simple expedient of sending police to find him when he's trying to find the corpse of said boy while consulting the boy's ghost. The ghost isn't very happy about this, but as Duncan is an experienced wizard as well as a police officer he is unconcerned. Unfortunately for him, Blake is able to subsequently break out of his cell and frame Duncan for stealing evidence related to his case (Duncan had, in fact, taken the evidence so that Blake could not use it to arm himself), and when he tries to hit the Reset Button using his chronomancy to remove all memory of the incident from his fellow officers, he discovers that the ghost boy has stolen the charm that he needed to power such a potent effect.
- In Rock of Ages, Drake Maijstral is a burglar, and famous for it. But he came to Earth for a vacation, not to steal. And if he were here to steal things, he wouldn't be so obvious about it — hiding things in the air ducts in his own room! That's an amateur move, and he's a professional! But somehow, the police aren't convinced by this argument. And jail's not the only danger here. Some of the people whose things have been stolen want him dead. If Drake can't find out who the actual thief is, and prove it, his career and his life may both be over.
- T*A*C*K: Judge Sweet's daughters pull some destructive Halloween pranks, then try to blame them on two kids who happen to be wearing the same costumes. Unfortunately for them, they pick Will and Toria, who promptly prove their innocence.
- Twice in Towards Zero. When Lady Camilla Tressilian was found dead, all the immediate evidence points to Nevile Strange, who was heard arguing with her before her death. However, he turned out to have an alibi, as the maid saw that the lady was still alive after Nevile had left the house. Discovery of new evidences then points to Audrey Strange, Nevile's ex-wife... except that turns out to be false as well.
- In the Transformers: TransTech story "Gone Too Far", Jackpot & Hubcap are framed by the actual killer for the murder of a popular revolutionary, putting them in danger from the victim's gangster friends. To make matters even more fun for the duo, the police know they're innocent but play along with pretending they're guilty anyway, because they hope the duo will come across the real killer while trying to escape/clear their name.
- Vorkosigan Saga: In Memory the criminal needs to frame someone, and initially tries the recently cashiered Lieutenant Vorkosigan. This backfires when the investigator who discovers the faked evidence is none other than the intended target.
- In Terra Ignota, the story is kicked off when someone frames the Saneer-Weeksbooth bash' for stealing the Seven-Ten list from the Black Sakura newspaper by smuggling the list into their house. Interestingly, the investigators realize very quickly that it's a frame-job, and immediately start asking why anyone would bother to frame the bash'. It turns out to be part of a gambit to get another Seven-Ten list into the public eye, since it wasn't going to be published due to a poorly timed retirement.
Live Action TV
- Accused: In "Alison's Story" Alison is framed as a drug dealer by her husband and his police captain father so she'll lose custody of their kids. Thankfully, this is revealed, she's acquitted, and they get arrested.
- Arrow: In season 3, Ra's al-Ghul, impressed with Oliver Queen's tenacity, desires for him to be his heir and the new leader of the League of Assassins, making a threat-veiled-as-prediction that Starling City would turn on him. When Oliver refuses, he decides to have his men dress up like the Arrow and start killing criminals, making good on his threat.
- Babylon 5: Garibaldi is framed for sabotaging one of the station's hangar bays, and has to find who is responsible before he gets cornered by the Security staff... or the numerous enemies he's made amongst the criminal world of the station. The bad guys turn out to be members of a xenophobic "Pro Earth" organization, including the second in command of the security detail sent to capture him.
- The fourth season finale of Brooklyn Nine-Nine has Jake and Rosa trying to bust a corrupt cop only to have her expertly frame them for robbery. At the trial, the woman brilliantly manages to not only destroy their "airtight" alibis but make it look like both are on the take and then sets up a "surprise witness" for the unit to find only to have him testify the duo are corrupt. The season ends with the two sent to jail and season five opens with the rest of the gang trying to prove them innocent.
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer: In the second season finale "Becoming", after Kendra is murdered by Drusilla, Buffy shows up at just the right time for the cops to assume that she was the one who killed Kendra, with Principal Snyder being all too eager to support that thought. By the time of the third season, Buffy has been cleared of all charges.
- Colony: In the past McGregor was framed for trying to blow the lid on the government conspiracy with the aliens. A huge amount of child porn was planted in his bunker.
- Conviction (2016):
- The wife of a victim in "Dropping Bombs" murdered him for having an affair by using a bomb a militant Islamophobe designed, implicating him in the process.
- Earl Slavitt in "A Different Kind of Death" was framed not only for murder, but the original crime he supposedly committed it in revenge for.
- CSI Warrick Brown in "For Gedda". He cleared his name only to get shot just afterward by the real killer.
- CSI: NY: Sheldon Hawkes in "Raising Shane". Serial killer Shane Casey paid a guy to dress like Hawkes and rob a bar, then the money was planted in Hawkes' own hoodie.
- Probably also applies to Mac, when Clay Dobson jumped of a building and framed Mac for pushing him
- Played distressingly straight in Dancing on the Edge when Louie, who was initially excluded as a suspect since he was across town when it happened, becomes the prime suspect in Jessie's murder.
- Daredevil (2015):
- The plot of season 1 is kicked off when Wilson Fisk has Karen Page framed up for murder when she attempts to blow the whistle on corrupt activities at Union Allied.
- After Wilson Fisk kills Anatoly Ranskahov, he has a piece of fabric planted on the body so that Anatoly's brother Vladimir will think Matt is responsible. This is to distract Vladimir while Fisk makes preparations to send bombers to wipe out Vladimir's entire operation. After the bombings themselves, Fisk runs a smear campaign with his connections in the Bulletin to paint Matt as responsible for the shooting of Detective Christian Blake.
- Subverted on the first season finale of Designated Survivor. FBI agent Hannah wakes up in a van filled with explosives in the parking lot of FBI headquarters. She manages to drive the van to the river to explode but is arrested with agents saying they found blueprints, explosives and other evidence in her apartment. The conspiracy had assumed that Hannah was investigating them on their own and this will destroy her credibility. What they don't know is that Hannah reports directly to President Kirkman who trusts her completely and doesn't buy this set-up for an instant. Thus, Hannah is only in handcuffs a few minutes before her boss shows up with a Presidential order to let her go.
- Doctor Who:
- In "Voyage Of The Damned", Max Capricorn plots to crash the space Titanic on Earth destroying billions of lives in order to frame his own company who voted him out.
- In "Face the Raven", Rigsy is framed for murdering an alien woman named Anah, as part of Ashildr's plan to lure the Doctor to the trap street.
- A major plot point in Dong Yi — the innocent secret society Geom Gye are framed for murders they didn't commit, and are exterminated.
- The Family: Willa framed Hank to insure he was convicted of Adam's murder. It turns out he was innocent. Hank later makes it look like John beat him up as revenge for crossing him.
- The Flash (2014):
- Barry's father Henry Allen was arrested for the murder of his wife Nora after the Reverse-Flash stabs her with a knife.
- In the Season Four mid-season finale, Barry himself ends up in one. Clifford DeVoe, AKA "The Thinker" transfers his mind to a new body and leaves his old one in Barry's apartment to frame him for his murder.
- Forever Knight in one of the early season 2 eps, Nick is framed for murder by LaCroix, whom Nick still thought was dead. Things got worse when the DNA Natalie substituted for Nick's vampire blood turned out to belong to the real killer.
- The Frankenstein Chronicles: Lord Hervey frames John for Flora's murder near the end of the first season.
- Both the TV series The Fugitive and the film start with a medical doctor framed for murder.
- Game of Thrones: Tyrion finds himself the victim of this twice. He is framed for Joffrey's poisoning, even though Tyrion looks extremely confused after his nephew's death. It's ultimately a rather poor job, considering that anyone who knows Tyrion would know that, if he did have Joffrey killed, he'd be smart enough not to be holding the poisoned goblet and looking on in Stunned Silence not five feet from the victim.
- The Handmaid's Tale: Serena has Nick frame Ray Cushing after he starts looking into June's escape too closely, to get rid of him.
- The title character of Hannibal is fond of this tactic. Early in season one, he implicates Nicholas Boyle (whose sister was killed by Garret Hobbs) in one of his copycat killings. He later pins the death of Dr Sutcliffe on Georgia. In the finale, he frames Will for several of his murders. When Will is exonerated partway through season two, he switches targets to Chilton. That last one involved a drugged FBI trainee he'd been holding prisoner for years in advance.
- JAG: In "Ares", The Mole planted floppy discs with corrupted software code from the eponymous weapons system with an innocent colleague, to steer attention away from his own planned escape.
- In the episode "Watching the Detectives" of Justified, Detroit criminal Robert Quarles conspires with Dixia mafia foot soldier Wynn Duffy to frame lawman US Deputy Marshal Raylan Givens for the murder of Raylan's ex-wife's estranged husband. Quarles actually murdered Gary (the estranged husband), but Quarles and Duffy get their crooked FBI connection, Special Agent Barkley, to launch simultaneous local and federal investigations which keeps Raylan stuck in the Marshal's office in Lexington while Quarles and Duffy are free to operate their fledgling criminal empire in Harlan.
- Kamen Rider Dragon Knight : Kit earned a reputation of a thief during the year following his father´s disappearance prior to the story´s start. He is a troublemaker, all right, but not an actual criminal. His supposed criminal records were set up by Xaxiax as a bad reputation would keep people away from him, which would make him easier to manipulate.
- Brad Barett, a former motocross racer was framed for sabotaging his rival´s machine to win the race. Xaviax has evidence that can prove Brad´s innocence. Interestingly enough, Brad is essentially a good guy like Kit and while brash and obsessed with winning, he would not cross the line into criminal offense.
- Guilt: Bruno is about to do this with Neville, then sees he's left-handed. As the killer was right-handed, it wouldn't stand up. Later Grace attempts to do this with Finch, putting Molly's missing phone in his car. However, a video recording uncovers this.
- Law & Order: SVU:
- In two episodes, Stabler gets falsely accused of being sexually abusive.
- In the episode "Doubt", the accusation is made by a emotionally disturbed woman who is either traumatized by a real case of abuse or simply an attention-whore who realized just how much attention a false accusation can give her. In either case, she recants her accusation against Stabler and the audience never gets to know if the guy she accused of rape got convicted or not - the episode ends as the jury is about to read the verdict.
- In the episode "Delinquent", a young sex offender makes up a nonsense accusation against Stabler, and then tries to get his own charges dropped in return for dropping those he made against stabler.
- In two episodes, Stabler gets falsely accused of being sexually abusive.
- Happens a lot on Melrose Place from making someone look like they're cheating on a lover to screwing up a business deal with a lot of wild stuff.
- Matt gets involved with Paul, a doctor who says his marriage is over as he knows he's gay. Coming to the house, Matt finds the alarms on and the police show up just as he discovers the body of Paul's wife. Interrogated, Matt confesses to the affair but is thrown when the police say they have reports of Matt stalking Paul and his wife. Paul bursts in to angrily snap at Matt, who claims his innocence. But when Paul rants on how Matt has been stalking them and now has killed his "beloved" wife, Matt realizes Paul did it and has been setting up Matt this whole time.
- It's bad enough in season 4 when Peter is wrongfully accused of killing a patient. But then he finds himself carted off by a nutso Kimberly (who is under another personality called "Betsy") who puts him in an insane asylum with the idea he's crazy and thinks he's a famous surgeon.
- Merlin "Queen of Hearts": Morgana frames Gwen for using magic on Arthur.
- Double subverted in the fifth-season Modern Family episode "Spring-a-Ding Fling." Gloria accuses Lilly of having broken the glass on her phone. Lilly maintains to both Gloria and Jay that, contrary to what they believe, Joe (an infant at the time) can walk and reach high enough to have gotten to Gloria's purse. When they see Joe walk for the first time at Lilly's prompting, they believe her. Later she confesses to the camera that she actually did it and framed Joe, to the point of taking Joe's shoes off and making fake footprints in spilled baby powder.
- But in the show's stinger one of her dads asks her why Joe's shoes are on the wrong feet.
- Murder in the First: Ernie Knubbins plants evidence making one of his subordinates appear to be behind the murder of an undercover cop, then has him murdered while in custody so he can't say otherwise.
- Once Upon a Time: In the late first season, Regina frames Mary Margaret for killing Kathryn. The case is about to go to trial, and looks hopeless, when Kathryn is found alive.
- Happens in Orange Is the New Black, when Daya frames the prison guard Mendez for rape. Daya is pregnant by Bennett, another prison guard, and since inmates cannot legally consent, Bennett would possibly be arrested for rape. She has sex with Mendez and then deliberately gets caught so that Mendez(who none of the inmates like) will be the one punished. It backfires somewhat when Mendez is simply suspended without pay. In Season 2, Bennett takes things into his own hands and reports Mendez himself, which leads to Mendez's arrest.
- Every episode ever of Perry Mason and Matlock (since they're defense attorneys and all "good" defense attorneys have innocent clients...right?).
- The first half of the first season of Quantico deals with Alex being framed for a terrorist bombing and having to clear her name.
- Renegade is about a cop framed for murdering his lover, and is constantly trying to confront the bad cops who framed him.
- Happens in the Star Trek episode "Court Martial" - Ben Finney fakes his death and frames Captain Kirk for his murder. However, Finney did not count on a) Spock discovering the computer that held the damning evidence had been tampered with and b) Finney's daughter turning over the letters he had written blaming Kirk for denying him his own command.
- Played with in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "A Matter Of Perspective" - Riker is accused of murdering a scientist working for the Federation in a fit of jealousy. It turns out the scientist was trying to murder Riker (via transporter accident) because he feared his plan to sell his research to another galactic power would be exposed. But the energy beam he used reflected off Riker's transporter beam and destroyed the station's power core, which made it look like Riker used his phaser to blow up the core. Attempted murder of the innocent party turned into a frame job of the same one!
- In the Supergirl episode "The Darkest Place", Vigilante Man Philip Karnowsky murders a crook that Guardian has just captured, making National City think that Guardian is responsible.
- The Bob Dylan song "Hurricane" about the imprisonment of Rubin "Hurricane" Carter.
Here comes the story of the Hurricane,The man the authorities came to blameFor somethin' that he never done.
- In mothy's vocaloid song The Escape of Salmhofer, the Witch, Meta Salmhofer is framed for the murder of Eve Moonlit's children.
- Dice Funk: The party is framed for kidnapping the lord's son, despite spending the entire adventure trying to save him.
- Paranoia specifically encourages this. Depending on play style, this can fall anywhere from "Traitor!" *ZAP ZAP ZAP* to planting and doctoring evidence in advance.
- In Dragon's Dogma, after slaying the dragon, Duke Edmun frames you up for bargaining with the dragon while he was the one who sacrificed his love on the first place. You will then be branded as a traitor and every guard will kill you on sight, there's no way you can clear your name, and you can't kill the Duke either. But here's a twist: If a traitor is what they want, then why not become one?
- In Ghost Trick, Lynne is framed for the murder of Yomiel by Yomiel. He controls her to shoot his immortal shell, makes sure it's caught on tape, then leaves his body to be found by the police. Since few people see the corpse before Cabanela steals it, no one else notices that it's a person who supposedly died ten years earlier.
- Happens to the player twice in GoldenEye Wii — first for the death of Valentin Zhukovsky, then later for Russian Defense Minister Mishkin.
- Knights of the Old Republic: Subverted. Sunry is accused of murdering a Sith woman and he says that the case is a complete Frame Up. Evidence reveals that he did do it, and when you confront him with this, he will explain himself. It's up to you if you want to get him free or send him to his death. One interesting element is that the Sith did frame him, but only after the Republic covered up the crime.
- Shiver: Poltergeist: James the butler, so incensed by Richard Kangale's intent to marry Brenda, a servant-girl, fakes a letter from Richard summoning her to the lighthouse, where she is burned alive. Richard himself dies in a lightning strike trying to summon her spirit, meaning that Brenda, now the poltergeist, never gets the chance to find out he's innocent until Ricardo shows up.
- Yandere Simulator:
- One way to get rid of rivals is to frame them for murder by wearing gloves (to keep Yandere-chan's fingerprints off) while wielding a weapon that the rival previously used (such as a knife from the Cooking Club). As long as Yandere-chan doesn't get her fingerprints on the weapon and burns any other possible evidence that could tie the murder to her, the rival will become the primary suspect.
- A non-murder elimination method is to frame the rival for being a delinquent and get them expelled. Ways to do this is planting contraband, stolen goods, or answer sheets in their desk, or steal their phone and take panty shots with them to make them look like a pervert. Present enough 'evidence' to the guidance counselor, and the rival will be expelled.
- A common occurrence in Deceit. In fact, it is outright encouraged (the game is called "Deceit" after all...). It usually takes the form of an Infected player getting their hands on a scanner and using it on an Innocent player before declaring them Infected over voice chat, but particularly brazen players have been known to drink blood bags in plain view of an innocent player and scream that said player just drank the blood bags over voice chat while starting to shoot them.
- Dead Rising 2: The bad guys frame Chuck Greene for triggering the zombie outbreak by showing a video of someone disguised as Chuck releasing the zombies.
- Ace Attorney has several cases where someone is framed: three of five cases in the first game ( Rise from the Ashes doesn't count, since the framed person was still complicit), two of four cases in the second game, and a whopping 4 of 5 cases in the third game. The trend continues in the second trilogy. In Ace Attorney Investigations, however, it's mostly averted because you're playing as a prosecutor; the only straight plays are when your friends are accused of murder. It's also important to note that the darkest cases of Ace Attorney may cross into Framing the Guilty Party territory.
- Dangan Ronpa:
- Naegi is nearly framed during the first case by Sayaka Maizono, the victim. She had intended to kill someone on the night they swapped rooms, but ended up being killed by her intended victim. The culprit, who only found out about the room swap afterwards, went with it when everyone thought he was guilty.
- Chapter 3's case begins with nearly everyone thoroughly convinced Yasuhiro Hagakure is the killer, but details regarding the costume he supposedly wore while carrying out the murders would have made those crimes impossible.
- Chapter 5's case is a set up intended to make everyone vote Kyoko Kirigiri as the culprit, set up by the Mastermind themselves since she is potentially the biggest wrench in their plan. And it likely would've worked if the Mastermind had killed Naegi to frame Kirigiri as was initially planned, instead of them being forced to improvise after Kirigiri intervenes in the scheme.
- Super Dangan Ronpa 2: As the second case unfolds, the evidence starts to pile up against Hiyoko Saionji, but a few incorrect details and how perfect the evidence is makes it obvious that it's a set up.
- New Dangan Ronpa V3:
- The culprit of Chapter 2 frames Himiko Yumeno by rigging her magic show to reveal Ryoma Hoshi's body halfway through, making it look like she was reponsible.
- The culprit of Chapter 3 frames Yumeno (again) by rigging three different rooms with the same deathtrap used to kill Tenko Chabishira, and asking Yumeno to choose which room they will use to perform the occult ritual, making it look like she set it up.
- During the fourth trial, it is eventually revealed that the victim, Miu Iruma, had planned to kill Kokichi Ouma and frame Kaito Momota for it. However, Kokichi saw right through her plan and was able to prevent her from carrying it out by getting one of the others to kill her.
- Chapter 6 reveals that Kaede Akamatsu's shot put missed Rantaro Amami, and the Mastermind hit him with an identical one afterwards, fooling everyone - including Kaede herself - into thinking she was guilty.
- In Shall We Date?: Ninja Shadow, Makoto's route has him framed for at least four murders. The Player Character is one of the few who fully believes that he's innocent. It turns out his Anti-Villain brother Toru is the real killer, looking to frame Makoto to force him join his plans to destroy the Shogunate.
- In the RWBY episode "Fall", Yang is framed for breaking Mercury's leg after she wins their tournament fight. Emerald uses her illusion semblance to make Yang believe that Mercury is attacking her, and she defends herself accordingly. However, all the stadium and television audience sees is her brutally attack an unsuspecting, passive combatant after the fight was already over and without provocation.
- Girl Genius: Beausoleil murders the Master of Paris, doing the deed with a sword decorated by the Heterodyne symbol in order to frame Agatha.
- In El Goonish Shive, Ellen, shortly after being created, tries to get Elliot in trouble by pretending to be him but Can't Get in Trouble for Nuthin'.
- Shadows Of Enchantment practically starts with Serris being framed for conspiracy to assassinate The Captain of the Aldrian Royal Guard. The real goal was to get Tyrus to come rescue her so that Aldria could find him to make a deal with him.
- In Sinfest, Slick tries to claim this when in Hell.
- Torg from Sluggy Freelance accidentally does this to a garbage robot.
- In S.S.D.D this is a favorite tactic of "the Gov'nor" on people who refuse to cooperate with him.
- The Most Stupid Deaths In Super Mario 64: Clone 2, in the 10000 view celebration, is framed for messing up Hyrule Castle. Though, he may be partially guilty for it, seeing as Mario and the three clones had a battle on it.
- In the 20000 view celebration, Link finds and attacks Clone 2 for this.
- You Have Become Your Avatar: Josh comes up with the idea of framing Identical Strangers in order to get the money and get the cops off their back. Storm suggests that they use cosplayers for the frame-up.
- In the Adventures of the Gummi Bears episode "The Crimson Avenger", a thief frames Cavin for stealing the king's ruby studs by slipping one of them into the boy's pocket, leading to Cavin's arrest. After a few false starts (including Calla being accused of being a crook after she's caught dressing as the Crimson Avenger), Cavin's innocence is eventually proven and the true thief is imprisoned.
- This was how Danny Phantom became a Hero with Bad Publicity thanks to an old enemy of his creating a thorough version of one of these.
- The plot of the Defenders of the Earth episode "The Defense Never Rests" revolves around Ming creating android clones of all the Defenders except Kshin and using them to create fake news footage in order to convince the Ilyrians, a race of staunch pacifists, that the Defenders are a terrorist organisation. As a result, the Defenders are put on trial, but Rick, LJ and Jedda (along with Kisa) manage to escape and head for Ice Station Earth, where they find Ming's androids. Having obtained proof that Ming faked the evidence he presented to the Ilyrians, they return to the trial, arriving just in time to prevent their elders from being banished to a distant galaxy. (Though Mandrake appears to have been banished already, he's actually casting one of his illusions.)
- John Stewart is framed for destroying an entire planet in season one of Justice League — and framed so thoroughly that even he thinks he's guilty. While the few other Green Lanterns who show up for his trial treat him with scorn (except Kilowog), the Leaguers aren't in a hurry to give up on him.
Superman: It was all an illusion — a frame-up, as they say on my planet.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
- In My Little Pony: Equestria Girls, Sunset Shimmer, Snips, and Snails doctor some photos to make it look like Twilight Sparkle trashed the Fall Formal decorations. Flash Sentry manages to find the original photos and clear her name.
- In "Rarity Investigates!", Wind Rider goes as far as to disguise himself as a mare to frame Rainbow Dash for trying to eliminate Spitfire from a competition. Rarity manages to clear her name.
- Parodied in Phineas and Ferb where Dr. Doofenshmirtz's plans an action series titled "Doof 'N' Puss", where the opening explains that Perry is framed for a crime he didn't commit, The 1865 assassination of Abraham Lincoln! It even shows a historical drawing of Lincoln at the Ford Theater with a cutout of Perry crudely taped to it.
- The classic The Simpsons episode "Krusty Gets Busted".
- The events of Skysurfer Strike Force start out when the Big Bad blows up an artificial intelligence lab and pins the blame on the main character's father.
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars:
- In the movie, Dooku framed the Jedi in front of Jabba for the kidnapping of his son, Rotta.
- In "Duchess of Mandalore", Satine got framed for murder when the Death Watch assassin hunting her shot the informant she was having a meeting with.
- In the final arc of season 5, Ahsoka is framed for the bombing of the Jedi temple and the murder of Letta, who was used as a proxy to deliver the bomb. She's then aided in escaping but further framed with the murder of several clones. On top of that, the real bomber then knocks out Ventress and borrows her helmet and lightsabers, in order to fool Ahsoka into thinking that Ventress is the bomber.
- Star Wars Rebels: In "Through Imperial Eyes", Agent Kallus frames Lieutenant Lyste as being Fulcrum. It doesn't quite go as planned, however, as Thrawn was already suspicious that Lyste wasn't smart enough to pull something like what happened in the episode, and ends up figuring out Kallus is Fulcrum thanks to something completely different. However, Thrawn and Yularen let the other Imperials, including Governor Pryce, believe that Lyste is the traitor in order to lull Kallus into a false sense of security, leaving Lyste's fate uncertain.
- On the Wallace & Gromit short A Close Shave Preston frames Gromit for sheep rustling. It even involves a literal frame-up, tricking Gromit into sticking his head through a picture of a butcher and taking an incriminating photo with one of the sheep.