"At the end of this puzzle, you have to affix the improbable cat hair moustache to your lip with maple syrup! ... Who killed Adventure Games? I think it should be pretty clear at this point that Adventure Games committed suicide."One order of magnitude greater than Franchise Killer, this is when a work somehow manages to take an entire genre down. A rare and unpredictable phenomenon that can, in extreme cases, cause a genre to become Deader Than Disco. This can happen in a variety of ways.
— Old Man Murray, "Death of Adventure Games"
- A Deconstruction that successfully brings every single flaw and illogical element of a genre to the fore, discrediting any subsequent attempts to play them straight.
- A parody (even accidental) that makes it difficult or impossible for anyone to take the genre seriously again.
- Something so incredibly bad that it leaves a bad taste in audiences' mouths for the entire genre.
- A particularly ghastly sequel runs the entire concept into the ground by the virtue of being thoroughly derivative.
- A work so good that nothing else can live up to it. This is rare, since these usually just attract imitators, but there's only so many derivative works the audience may take before switching to something else.
- Alternatively, a Trope Codifier or Trope Maker is so dominating that it kills off any competing or experimental subgenres that don't adhere to the rules it sets down. For example, Street Fighter II and Double Dragon so completely solidified the rules of the Fighting Game and Beat 'em Up (respectively) that they all but eliminated major gameplay deviations in their genres.
- A Magnum Opus that might not be necessarily good but is guaranteed to become classic due to utterly exhausting the genre and beating every single trope in it to death, making it nearly impossible to create further works within the genre's constraints without being accused of Plagiarism or Creative Sterility.
- Any shallow attempts at the genre's Reconstruction that end up Jumping the Shark due to introducing new elements without rhyme or reason, making the renewed franchise seem like a mockery of its former self.
- A work from outside the genre that exposes some of a genre's necessary weasels as not so necessary.
- Death of a representative icon of the genre, such as a visionary writer/director/musician/etc dying, or a major company with a focus on the genre shutting down.
- Changing sociopolitical trends render common and defining themes in a genre uncomfortable, bigoted, or even offensive, such as Minstrel Shows, which would have white actors in blackface.
- A work that is very good but turns out to be a commercial failure, making everyone afraid to invest in this genre.
- A genre gets so expensive to produce or film convincingly that people aren't willing to lay down the money for it. Sometimes advances in CGI or computer programming can revive the genre — for example, the Epic Movie was briefly dead until advances in computer technology and animatronics were able to tamp down on the costs. Of course, disaster movies are becoming rarer again for the same reason. Alternatively, it turns out that the technology needed to convincingly move the genre forward wasn't as viable as people thought. Gaze upon the many, many aborted attempts to have fully-3D characters replacing "real" actors in a movie or 3D gaming.
- Assorted freak events or coincidences make a genre unviable or unpopular, and a particular work gets perceived as either being a tasteless exploitation plot, Ripped from the Headlines in the worst possible sense, or worse, being directly held responsible for the unfortunate events in question.
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Anime and Manga
- The poor sales and cancellation of Waai! and Otonyan and the failure of the Himegoto anime killed off virtually all mainstream attempts in the Otokonoko Genre. Not helped by the Genre Deconstruction Bokura no Hentai coming along and pointing out the genre's numerous problems, namely the large amounts of transphobia and homophobia.
- Despite its part in revitalizing the Anime industry as a whole, Neon Genesis Evangelion also had the effect of killing off traditional idealistic Super Robot series in the vein of Mazinger Z and Getter Robo. While some revivals, like GaoGaiGar and Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, have proved successful, none have ever stuck, and the angstier, character-driven Humongous Mecha shows styled after Evangelion still predominate.
- The Otaku Killer and the media circus surrounding his deeds in Japan resulted in the death of the ultra-violent Shounen series. Before that, manga like Fist of the North Star, Devilman, Bastard, and JoJo's Bizarre Adventure could get away with large amounts of gore and nudity despite running in magazines that were geared towards the 8-14 demographic. After about 1990, shounen manga, while still able to show more sex and violence than the average American comic targeted at the same age group, would never reach the same level of content they could before, and extreme violence has largely (with a few exceptions, like Apocalypse Zero, Deadman Wonderland, Attack on Titan or Akame ga Kill!) been relegated to Seinen.
- Big Windup was this for sports anime and manga in the American market due to poor sales reported by Funimation. Most anime licensors in North America refuse to license sports anime from that point on until a relatively popular swimming anime about handsome boys and six-pacs (Free!) and a sports anime about volleyball (Haikyuu!!) came into play in 2013/2014, which also led the sports anime genre to a Genre Relaunch.
- Similar to the Evangelion example above with mecha anime, the success of Puella Magi Madoka Magica and its spinoffs have largely killed off the idealistic Magical Girl series. While several concrete examples such as the Pretty Cure series still exist due to the Grandfather Clause (and even then, Pretty Cure itself still defies conventions by being far more action oriented than the usual series), most magical girl series now involve re-imaginings of earlier series (Sailor Moon Crystal) or Darker and Edgier original works (Kill la Kill) that subvert some aspect of the genre. However, the idealistic side of the genre still has a lot of influence on Western Animation, with shows such as Steven Universe, Star vs. the Forces of Evil, and Miraculous Ladybug being immensely popular.
- In a similar manner to the video games below; the success of the Pokémon anime has made it very difficult for any other Mon series to gain a foothold. Usually, they just end up being viewed as imitators.
- Much like the games below, averted in Japan with Yo Kai Watch emerging as a major competitor and going toe to toe with Pokémon regularly in popularity; but played straight outside Japan, where it's nowhere near as popular despite positive reviews from critics and a small Western fanbase. It has managed to shake off the stigma of being viewed as a Pokémon imitator, though.
- The flop of The Asterisk War killed the Wizarding School Battle Harem light novel, which, while not exactly being a critical favorite, was quite a profitable genre for both books and anime. However, A-1 Pictures hyped up Asterisk so much (most notably sinking massive amounts of money into the artwork and getting Maaya Sakamoto to perform the ending theme, with music from Swedish electro-house artist and huge Occidental Otaku Rasmus Faber) that when fans watched the first episode and saw a tired bunch of cliches held together by Fanservice, many began to actively turn against the genre itself, and any subsequent magic-school harem hijinks shows were largely forgotten. While light novels haven't abandoned the Harem Genre entirely, the trend toward Eastern RPG inspired fantasy stories means that they, nowadays, at least have some semblance of a plot rather than one that exists only for cute girl fanservice. Chivalry of a Failed Knight also had aired on the same season, making it a Dueling Works. Not only did both shows' first episode's plot were almost identical to each other, which became a factor in the genre being perceived as being Strictly Formula, that show ended up doing better than Asterisk War in the end despite its lower budget and shorter run time, both critically and commercially. That being said, Failed Knight still failed to sell enough BD/DVD copies to be ensured a 2nd season.
- The original Dada movement of 1916 - which was based on violating conventions and depended on confusing and upsetting audiences - died when people began enjoying it, thus defeating its purpose. However, its influence can still be seen to this day: it contributed to the rise of postmodernism, and Spiritual Successors such as YouTube Poop follow Dadaist ideology to a T.
- Futurism was an artistic and social movement that originated in Italy and spread throughout Europe in the early 20th century. It emphasized and glorified themes associated with contemporary concepts of the future, including speed, technology, youth, and violence, and objects such as the car, the airplane, and the industrial city. The Futurists practiced in every medium of art, including painting, sculpture, ceramics, graphic design, industrial design, interior design, urban design, theatre, film, fashion, textiles, literature, music, architecture, and even gastronomy. Unfortunately, both the fascists in Italy and the Nazis in Germany found the Futurist movement to be subversive and outlawed it. Futurist artists were targeted, and most died in concentration camps. The USSR also clamped down on its own futurist movement in the '30s following the rise of Josef Stalin, favoring Socialist Realism instead. For extra black irony, many (though by no means all) of the most prominent Futurists had been enthusiastic, or at least ambiguously positive, about fascism, embracing the movement due to their admiration of the dynamism of violence, nationalism, and power, at least until they themselves started getting jailed and murdered for creating "degenerate art". This retrospectively tainted the entire movement, and the survivors quickly found new art movements to be a part of. As a result, Futurism was as dead as Julius Caesar by 1944. Nonetheless, the ideals of Futurism remain as significant components of modern Western culture, especially in Science Fiction.
- Watchmen and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns caused a period of Darker and Edgier comic books by starting a trend of comic-book deconstruction and killing off the idealistic Silver Age-type hero (until Kingdom Come made it viable again). Alan Moore, writer of Watchmen, is incredibly aware of this, having spent a majority of his career after the novel trying to undo its influence on comics.
- Deathmate, the Intercontinuity Crossover between Image Comics and Valiant Comics, killed the '90s Anti-Hero, many of the creative elements that led to the archetype, one of its parents, and, in a sense (though it wasn't the only factor here), the entire industry as it existed at that point in time.
- The end of World War II killed most Golden Age superheroes - in the post-war period, people weren't that interested in reading about people fighting to save the world any more, and other genres took over. Among the few survivors were Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman.
- In the '50s, the stringent censorship of The Comics Code killed the crime and horror genres in American comics. This was entirely intentional, as the increasingly gruesome stories had drawn enough fire from the Moral Guardians that comics as a whole were in danger of being prohibited in many states.
- Both De Kiekeboes as well as the works of Raoul Cauvin destroyed the trend of ethnic stereotyping in Belgian Comics and Franco-Belgian Comics respectively. The former because they proved that a realistic portrayal of foreigners and foreign countries is much more profitable (the comic book has a respectable number of readers that read it because the realistic portrayal of foreign countries allows them to feel like if they are going on a vacation). The latter stereotyped jobs and popularized the trend of job stereotyping, making ethnic stereotyping feel rather unnecessary since the trend of stereotyping is already being done, without any Unfortunate Implications included. Some comic books still use ethnic stereotypes (such as Urbanus), but it is more out of tradition (it predated both) than because of anything else. Speaking of which...
- Urbanus killed off most of the family-friendly comedic series in its native Flanders. Before there was a humongous amount of comic books that involved family-friendly comedy (such as Boule Et Bille, Olivier Blunder etc.) that were very popular for being both in color at a time when most comic books were in black and white (or rather: blue and red) as well as not offending to the Catholic groups. When Urbanus (nowadays the 3rd best-selling comic book in the De Standaard) showed Flanders that Refuge in Audacity, Vulgar Humor and Black Comedy could be watched by Flemish families and sell in masses without backlash from Moral Guardians, the lack of them in those comic books, which always used alternative ways for humor, quickly showed how outdated they could become. Nowadays most comedy comic books in Flanders feature one of the above in one way or another. You could even say that this is one of the things that separates the Belgian comic from the Dutch comic.
- There are good Curefics, and there are bad Curefics, and then there are these:
- After Pretty Cure Perfume Preppy, don't expect reference-driven Curefics to be taken seriously again for the foreseeable future.
- Pretty Cure Bukatsudo Energetic, a Curefic masterpiece, has become such a Tough Act to Follow that nowadays, it's impossible to write a Japanese School Club-themed Curefic without being accused of ripping this one off.
- Rhyme And Reason, the first Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers fanfic ever written that was meant to be one in the first place, almost killed off CDRR fanfiction entirely in 1996. The two reasons were its sheer length and its quality. Most Rangerphiles thought, "If that's what CDRR fanfic is supposed to be, sorry, but I can't write anything even close to this." It took the launch of the fanfic series The Adventures of Gadget Hackwrench the next year to get other Rangerphiles into writing (although not for that series) and kick off the CDRR fanfic tradition.
Films — Animation
- The massive commercial failure and mixed reception of Disney's The Black Cauldron, including being beaten at the box office by The Care Bears Movie, killed any studio interest in PG-rated animated films until DreamWorks Animation's successes with Antz, The Prince of Egypt, and especially Shrek. Since then, it's now become a standard to have animated films rated PG to increase their box office chances.
- The failure of The Rescuers Down Under and DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp at the box office against Home Alone and Problem Child (coupled with the success of both The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast) led Disney to focus exclusively on animated musicals throughout the 1990s. While this worked out very well for them in the short term and possibly the very-long term, in the long term it ended up allowing studios like Pixar and DreamWorks Animation to step in and fill the gap of non-musical animated films, just as audiences were beginning to grow tired of the musical formula. Despite Disney abandoning musicals shortly thereafter, this still knocked them down from first to fifth in terms of American animation studios throughout the 2000s, and it wasn't until a decade later that they were finally able to regain the ground they had lost by going back to their old approach of alternating between musical and non-musical animated films (incidentally, the movies that led to the defeat of Rescuers and DuckTales also started the short-lived "kid empowerment" trend of the early '90s - see further down for its fate).
- Titan A.E. is often blamed for putting the era where more mature, artistic animation dominated much of the medium throughout the late 1980's to the 1990's to its coffin. Its inability to be defined as either a film for kids or a film for mature audiences, along with rampant Executive Meddling by Fox over budget and time constraints, led to the studio losing $100 million once the poor box office numbers came in. An immediate side-effect soon took place: studios began abandoning hand-drawn animation entirely in the years that followed, computer-generated imagery began receiving more investments and attention from said studios, and cartoons that were far more cheaper to produce than ever began dominating pipelines throughout the animation world, leading to The Millennium Age of Animation. Of course, Titan A.E. alone isn't solely to blame for the era's end; the release of Toy Story and the under-performance of Pocahontas five years earlier convinced studios that computer animation was worth a look, and that traditional animation was becoming simply too expensive to continue utilizingnote .
- The Fractured Fairy Tale replaced the Animated Musical as the go-to story genre during the 2000s thanks to the success of DreamWorks Animation's Shrek in 2001, resulting (as the Disney musical had in the 1990s) in numerous copycats. Unfortunately, the genre's reliance on crude humor and dated pop culture jokes turned it stale within a few years, and by the time 2007's Shrek the Third came out, the market had become overcrowded with them. Happily N'Ever After concluding that year with a thud and the next major DWA project, Kung Fu Panda, changing that studio's animation strategy, signaled the beginning of the end for the genre. The (perceived) financial disappointment of Shrek Forever After in 2010, a year that otherwise saw a rather successful resurgence of more traditional animated films (Toy Story 3, Tangled, How to Train Your Dragon, Despicable Me...), ended up turning other animation studios off of using the formula, and the box office failure of Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil in 2011 seems to have killed the genre off for good.
- The failure of Mars Needs Moms resulted in the shut-down of Robert Zemeckis's studio and with it, the death of full form motion-capture animation for at least a while (though Serkis Folk mocap animation for live action features is still very much alive).
- The Plague Dogs is known for being one of the most depressing animated films ever made. The Western audience wasn't ready at all, so the concept of dark, almost entirely uncomedic animated feature films was pretty much shelved in the aftermath. It wasn't until the late Noughties until the concept found a revival with works such as Waltz with Bashir.
- The wave of family films specifically aimed at single-parent kids in the 1990s ended with the failures of Titan A.E. and Treasure Planet.
Films — Live-Action
- In 1928, there was a double-header of Genre Killers so extreme that it took out the entire Canadian film industry. The federally-funded National Film Board of Canada was founded in 1939 in an attempt to revive it, but only in the '70s with the Pierre Trudeau government's cultural sponsorship projects did independent Canadian cinema begin to reemerge.
- The first Genre Killer was the 1928 Canadian film Carry on, Sergeant!note , a World War I silent epic about Canadian soldiers in the trenches of France. Thanks to its Troubled Production, soaring budget (about half a million dollars, as large as comparable Hollywood films like The Jazz Singer), and box-office failure, it destroyed Canada's largest independent film studio and made Canadian financiers extremely leery of financing similar big-budget efforts, playing a huge role in reducing Canada's native film industry to an outpost of Hollywood.
- The other one was the Cinematograph Films Act of 1927 (which came into force the following year), a law in the United Kingdom that placed a quota on foreign films in order to protect British film studios. Canada dodged the quota by technically being a part of The British Empire, but rather than nurturing and protecting the local film industry, it instead caused Hollywood studios to set up Canadian subsidiaries that vacuumed up the small pool of local talent for the production of "quota quickies", cheap and often wretched films made for the British market to get around the quota. The scourge of the quota quickies also affected the UK itself, but owing to a larger market and greater distance from the US, their film industry recovered in far less time. While more recent scholarship has reevaluated the quota quickies as the birth of the British B-Movie, a way for aspiring filmmakers to get their foot in the door with low-budget flicks, the Cinematograph Films Act of 1927 is still seen as a textbook case of short-sighted legislation having precisely the opposite effect than what was intended.
- The 3-D Movie genre has been killed three times in the past several decades:
- The first culprit was The Moonlighters, a forgettable Warner Western starring Barbara Stanwyck and Fred MacMurray, in 1953. It didn't help that it had to compete against The Robe, a flat classic in CinemaScope, during its run. The film did the least damage to the genre, though, as it only took Kiss Me Kate later that same year to put 3-D back on the map.
- The second culprit was Phantom of the Rue Morgue the following year, which was just as mediocre as, if not moreso than, Moonlighters was. Its accomplice was The Mad Magician, a cheap House of Wax clone involving stage magic instead of a wax museum, which did well at the box office but earned a sorry reputation. This time, though, the 3-D craze at the time went out not with a whimper, but with a bang: the last classic '50s 3-D film, Revenge of the Creature, capped off this craze with a successful 3-D run, which still wasn't enough to save the craze.
- A third craze was ended nearly thirty years later by Spacehunter: Adventure in the Forbidden Zone, a 1983 flop with a budget similar to the highly successful Star Wars, with accomplices including The Man Who Wasn't There, Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn, and Amityville 3-D.
- Since 2009, there have been numerous false alarms about the current 3D craze dying, brought about by the likes of Battle for Terra, Clash of the Titans, The Last Airbender, The Nutcracker in 3D, and Conan the Barbarian (2011). Despite all the rumours of the dying craze, though, it's still going on, having been kept afloat by 3D theatrical re-releases of several classic movies, including a couple of Disney animated features and a few Pixar movies. That said, studios have more of a vested interest in keeping 3-D around this time — 3-D movies are much harder to pirate, a feature that the industry appreciates very much. Additionally, digital technology has greatly reduced the costs of producing 3-D movies.
- And now, for only the second time, it's been nearly thirty years since the last 3D craze had been shot down, and 3D movies are once again in grave danger of going the way of the dinosaur, this time no thanks to a court ruling over 3D movie patents. Yep, you probably know where this is headed. It now appears the current incarnation of 3D is finally entering its death knell slowly but surely, as the number of movies seeing a 3D release is down to 28 in 2014, and the failure of 3D television by 2017 cuts off the valuable home video market (often blamed for Disney not bothering with 3D Blu-ray in the United States at all in 2014 and 2015 except in regards to Marvel and Pixar releases). While 3D will still find a place in niche areas such as IMAX, its heyday in the wake of Avatar is long gone.
- Many film historians also consider Psycho to be the movie that killed Film Noir, as the purpose of the first hour or so is to continuously set up and subvert the tropes of that genre.
- The disastrous failures of Cleopatra in 1963 and The Fall of the Roman Empire in '64 killed the Sword & Sandal epic for over three decades. It wasn't until 2000 when Gladiator revived the genre; there have been a number of Roman and Greek-era action films in the ensuing years.
- The Greatest Story Ever Told, a 1965 All-Star Cast production of Jesus' life that received mixed reviews and bombed at the box office, was the beginning of the end for the mainstream success of the religious epic. Changes in film censorship (in the era of the Hayes Code, religious epics were notorious for taking advantage of their unimpeachable message to push the envelope in terms of sex and violence) and the general politicization of artistic work with religious themes have further removed religious epics from the standard menu of film genres. When modern examples do appear, however, they're often big hits due to being perceived as novel.
- The epic romance largely disappeared after Ryan's Daughter and Nicholas and Alexandra flopped in the early '70s. While occasional epics cropped up through the '80s and '90s (eg. Out of Africa, Titanic) they're now typically one-off events rather than the box office staple they once were. Titanic actually started a slew of imitators that tapered off in a few years (Pearl Harbor, Pompeii).
- The failure of The Wiz in 1978 caused studios to give up on movies with mostly black casts for some time, outside of comedies, black cop/white cop pairings, and "urban" dramas. The smash success of Tyler Perry's films have helped Hollywood take more note of the African-American movie dollar. Long before Tyler Perry, the 1988 Eddie Murphy comedy Coming to America helped bring back films with mostly black casts.
- The Poliziotteschi, gritty Italian crime films in the vein of Dirty Harry and Bullitt, had their heyday in The '70s, reflecting Italy's "Years of Lead" (a time of political violence from both Marxist and neo-fascist groups) and the wider fortunes of the Italian film industry of the time. But by the end of the decade, the genre was slumping in popularity. One of the genre's key script writers, Dardano Sacchetti, had grown dismayed by what he felt were the fascistic undertones of the genre, and helped undermine the genre from within by steering it towards self-parody and eventually outright comedy.
- Though The Western was already struggling before due to a variety of circumstances for about a decade, the point cited by most film geeks and historians as the ultimate bullet in the genre's head was Heaven's Gate in 1980. That film was such a Box Office Bomb that it killed its studio and its director's career, and Hollywood became very reluctant to release big-budget Western films for several years afterward. Even successful reconstruction films like Silverado couldn't jump-start the genre back to its original prominence. While westerns are still fairly common, they have never returned from their virtual omnipresence of yesteryear. It's also telling that most modern examples subvert some aspect of the genre, as a straight western is still basically dead.
- Heaven's Gate is also usually blamed for the end of the auteur films produced by Hollywood in the 1970s. Other flops, such as Steven Spielberg's 1941, Peter Bogdanovich's They All Laughed, Martin Scorsese's New York, New York, and Francis Ford Coppola's One from the Heart and The Cotton Club, were also used as examples of the danger of giving auteur filmmakers carte blanche when making "personal" or "blockbuster" films. Ironically, the auteur film genre was brought back by another genre killer (see Days of Thunder below).
- It's said that Airplane! killed the Disaster Movie craze of The '70s by making audiences unable to take them seriously anymore. While the genre was revived by The '90s with movies like Armageddon, Deep Impact, Dante's Peak and Volcano, which benefited from the development of modern CGI, the airliner-in-peril/stewardess-lands-the-plane trope won't be taken seriously again. Eventually, 9/11 and the Indian Ocean tsunami killed the genre a second time by way of Too Soon, with very few pure disaster movies being made since then.
- Xanadu and Can't Stop the Music effectively killed the musical, which was already crippled during the 1970s and by then was only kept afloat by the now-extinct disco craze. The genre didn't stay dead forever, however. Moulin Rouge! in 2001 and Chicago in 2002 sparked renewed interest in musicals. Various other films since then have had mixed success, but in general, musicals are not considered particularly standard. Trailers for some musicals will even disguise the fact that the film is a musical. However the genre seems to be making a comeback with the combined critical and commercial successes of Into the Woods (2014), La La Land (2016), and Beauty and the Beast (2017).
- Quest for Fire in 1981 effectively killed the serious caveman movie by setting the bar so high that nobody could hope to compete. Also not helped by the not-serious-at-all Caveman also being a success that year.
- Female-led superhero movies suffered two major blows.
- First came the 1984 film Supergirl, testing the waters for the concept in the wake of the fantastic success of the Superman films. It suffered terrible Executive Meddling and was so horribly received that it took two decades for any studio to try again. (The below-mentioned temporary death of the entire superhero genre during that time didn't help.)
- The result was the one-two punch of Catwoman and Elektra, which were both instantly ridiculed as among the worst comic book movies ever made and sent the studios right back to the safe embrace of male heroes. Even the much-ballyhooed success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe took ages to attempt another, with its most prominent female hero Black Widow notoriously relegated to an occasional supporting role despite massive demand for her to get her own film. Eventually they came back on TV first, with the highly acclaimed MCU series Jessica Jones and (ironically enough) the Arrowverse series Supergirl finally showing tangible support for more female heroes. By this time the MCU had already set up their first foray in film with Captain Marvel, but were beaten to the punch by the newcomer DC Extended Universe and their Wonder Woman film. That one seems well set to finally reverse the trend, immediately becoming one of the best reviewed comic book films ever made and a smash box office success.
- The creation of the PG-13 rating in 1984 killed the family blockbusters of Steven Spielberg et al. that were popular from the late '70s through the mid '80s. The irony is that the rating was intended to save those sorts of films; Spielberg himself came up with the idea of a rating between PG and R as a way to answer concerns over the family-unfriendly violence in films like Gremlins and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, referring to the proposed rating as "PG with a little hot sauce." However, the PG-13 rating divided "family" films into two ghettoes: PG became lumped in with the G rating in both the popular consciousness and that of the MPAA (i.e. a rating for kiddie flicks), while PG-13 became the rating of teen-oriented blockbusters with more violence than would otherwise be acceptable to bring a family to.
- Conan the Destroyer in 1984 and Red Sonja in '85 may well have been the films that killed the "sword and sorcery" Heroic Fantasy as a film genre for quite some time. Their predecessor Conan the Barbarian, however, was a classic example of such brought to film.
- The Slasher Movie genre went through two phases, with two Genre-Killers, roughly ten years apart:
- After a Golden Age stretching from 1978 to roughly 1985, the genre spent the late '80s struggling thanks to a glut of Direct-to-Video crap, but the final nails in the coffin came in 1989, when the "Big Three" slasher franchises (Halloween, A Nightmare on Elm Street, and Friday the 13th) all produced poorly-received installments that sent their respective series into irreversible decline. While a few Cult Classic slasher films trickled out in the early '90s, for the most part the genre was Deader Than Disco, its Glory Days long in the past. In the more cynical '90s, the old slashers were seen as a mess of cliches, misogyny, dumbass characters, and bargain-bin production values, especially with the rise of more intellectual horror films like The Silence of the Lambs and Jacob's Ladder.
- The genre was revived in 1996 by Scream. Ironically, Scream was an attempt by Wes Craven (creator of A Nightmare on Elm Street) to do this deliberately, burying the slasher genre once and for all by making a movie that picked apart and lampshaded the tropes of the genre, which he felt would make it impossible to take seriously anymore. It backfired, though — Scream was a Sleeper Hit that spawned three sequels and a host of copycat films. Given the fact that the genre was relaunched by a deconstruction, however, it should come as no surprise that the genre quickly plunged back into self-parody. A number of lampoon movies, such as the Scary Movie series and Shriek if You Know What I Did Last Friday the Thirteenth, were released, and even some of the older franchises joined in (Jason X, for instance, took the Friday the 13th franchise into space and heavily riffed on the series' formula). The Columbine massacre in 1999 sparking a Too Soon reaction to the mostly teen-oriented slasher genre, among both Moral Guardians and their target audience, also didn't help matters. The finishing blows came in 2002 with the release of The Ring and 28 Days Later, a pair of horror films with adult protagonists that eschewed the slasher formula, both of which were highly successful. While ultraviolent horror films would soon come back into style thanks to the Torture Porn boom, traditional slashers made since are mostly either remakes or Genre Throwbacks, the latter usually either going Direct-to-Video or running the indie/arthouse circuit.
- Film journalist Stephen Metcalf argues that the wretched production excesses of Days of Thunder in 1990, and their attendant impact on the film's profits, killed the kind of blatantly commercial "triumph" movies that producers Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer had made so much money for Paramount with during the 1980s, films that were sort of a backlash against the auteur-era movies that had prevailed before Heaven's Gate. Afterwards, studios would let directors assert themselves creatively again, and it's no coincidence that Days director Tony Scott's critical reputation improved over the course of the '90s.
- Jaws 3D and Jaws: The Revenge not only killed any attempt to continue the franchise centered around the smash hit masterpiece Jaws, but ensured any further movies centered around killer sharks would not be taken seriously anymore. Jaws itself is also partly to blame for killing the genre because many shark-centered films following it couldn't shake off accusations of taking cues from the film. The only serious, shark-centered film to have received a worldwide theatrical release since Jaws: The Revenge was Deep Blue Sea, which despite being a box office success ended up suffering the same problems many post-Jaws films got pinned with, and another serious killer shark movie wouldn't come to worldwide theaters until 17 years later, with The Shallows. While that movie was surprisingly well-received, it ended up getting dumped alongside Finding Dory and Independence Day: Resurgence to generate enough interest.
- A localized killer: the disappointing box office performance of Universal Soldier made it Carolco's third and final yearly science fiction blockbuster following the major successes that were Total Recall (1990) and Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
- Jurassic Park in 1993 is another example of one film's smash success making it impossible for subsequent films to live up to it. Sequels to the original film notwithstanding, no-one has bothered to make a serious dinosaur movie since; and all films and video games that have happened to feature dinosaurs have, without exception, contained conscious nods to the franchise. Even the 1998 American Godzilla film riffed on it in trailers, and featured suspiciously velociraptor-like chase scenes with baby Godzillas.
- Showgirls killed any chance of an NC-17-rated movie being seen as anything more than porn to the mainstream movie-going crowd. The rating is now limited to art house fare such as The Dreamers, Lust, Caution, Killer Joe, Shame, and Nymphomaniac.
- In addition to launching the CG animated movie craze, the original Toy Story in 1995 was also largely responsible for ending the "kid empowerment" movie trend of the early-mid '90s. After Home Alone, there was a glut of kids movies which either ripped off that movie (Mr. Nanny, Camp Nowhere, 3 Ninjas, etc.) or placed kids in absurdly powerful positions and situations (Cop and a Half, Richie Rich, Blank Check, Little Big League, Rookie of the Year, etc.). When Toy Story, which featured a perfectly normal kid doing perfectly normal things, became a much bigger success (both critically and commercially) than any of those movies, the "kid empowerment" style was gradually phased out.
- Cutthroat Island in 1995 was an attempt to revive the swashbuckling adventure movie. Instead, it just sunk it farther down into its grave, along with Carolco Pictures, the careers of almost everyone involved, and (along with their other collaboration The Long Kiss Goodnight) the marriage of star Geena Davis and director Renny Harlin. The genre was not exactly a thriving one at release, but this made sure no one would even attempt another shot at it. Even after the success of Pirates of the Caribbean, no-one seems interested in pirate movies that don't belong to that franchise.
Pirates of the Caribbean is itself an example of the tough-act-to-follow franchise. Those movies have both cost and generated so much money that a rival studio would have to make a major commitment just to play in the same league, and risk a financial catastrophe if audiences say, "Johnny Depp isn't in it? Pass." About the only other pirate-themed franchise that's still doing well is One Piece, albeit for different reasons. And both Pirates of the Caribbean and One Piece have very heavy fantasy elements that make them rather different to the pure swashbuckler.
- Batman & Robin and Steel, both from 1997, are credited for being the reason why Super Hero films were a dead genre for the rest of the decade and some years after. They might have even killed a planned Sailor Moon adaptation at Disney (though its underperformance on the small screen, not helped by clumsy syndication scheduling placements, certainly didn't help matters, either). More importantly, they killed the superhero movie as a form of all-ages family entertainment. Joel Schumacher's Batman movies had undergone heavy Executive Meddling to make them more family-friendly and Merchandise-Driven, which played a huge role in their negative reception by fans, critics, and moviegoers. As a result, the next generation of superhero films in the mid '00s excised all traces of camp and went the Darker and Edgier route — Christopher Nolan's Batman films were pretty much gritty crime dramas with Batman, while even more lighthearted films like X-Men and Spider-Man had substantially darker storylines (and, in X-Men's case, costumes) than superhero films past. Only recently has Marvel begun to explicitly target superhero films at families again.
- A subversion: In the '90s, many Martial Arts Movie makers and fans feared that the upcoming handover of Hong Kong back to China in 1997 would result in this (the Asian financial crisis of the late '90s also played a part). But while the Hong Kong film industry did experience a crisis in the late '90s, others saw opportunity... especially other Asian countries. Countries such as South Korea, Japan, and Thailand began producing their own martial arts films, hoping to fill the void, and creating some new stars in the process, such as Tony Jaa and Jeeja Yanin. And as it turned out, the Chinese takeover of Hong Kong did not signal the death knell of martial arts movies there, either, particularly with the rise of "arthouse" martial arts films such as Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Hero, and House of Flying Daggers. While the Chinese takeover and the Asian financial crisis did mark the end of the "Classic Age" of Hong Kong cinema, China and Hong Kong continue to produce many martial arts films today.
- The 1998 Godzilla movie, along with the remake of Mighty Joe Young that same year, killed off the American giant monster movie for at least a decade. Peter Jackson's planned remake of King Kong, for one, was delayed in the wake of their failures. The modest successes of Cloverfield and Pacific Rim are credited with at least helping the genre regain some niche appeal, enough that a reboot of Godzilla arrived theaters in 2014 and turned out to be a Sleeper Hit.
- When Wild Wild West reared its ugly head in 1999, it was torn apart by critics and the audience. Roger Ebert gave it a spot on his most hated list, it became an Old Shame to Will Smith and Warner, and pushed ideas of westerns that crossed over into sci-fi/fantasy into the far background for over a decade. Eventually, Hollywood tried again with Cowboys and Aliens, which got a better reception but still mixed reception and bombed heavily. Disney had their own fantasy-esque western in the works, a reboot of The Lone Ranger, and nearly pulled the plug on it. When they finished it, studio chairman Rich Ross had been sent packing, and the film bombed even harder and got worse reviews than Cowboys And Aliens, giving the third strike to the idea of making a western with superfluous sci-fi/fantasy/mystical elements in it. No attempt to try this idea again has materialized since.
- The failures of The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle (2000) and Looney Tunes: Back in Action (2003) killed the sub-genre of "cartoon characters living in the real world" that Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988) and Space Jam (1996) popularized.
- In an odd twist, The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle also heralded the above sub-genre being shortly succeeded afterwards by the similar "live-action/CG character" sub-genre, which saw a boom in live-action film adaptations aimed at families/kids that featured non-human characters from popular properties presented in CGI. While these style of films had first taken its roots with Casper (1995), the genre only really took off with the commercially successful 2002 Scooby-Doo adaptation, which was then followed a glut of similar films throughout the Turn of the Millennium.
By The New '10s, however, audiences' perception of these films began to fall in line with reviewers; who had (with rare exceptions) largely panned the subgenre for their increasingly repetitive formulas of narrative beats, low-brow humor, "realistic" depictions of characters, and —concerning adaptations— having little to do with the source material. Combined with increased competition and popularity of CGI animated films (especially due to Illumination's successful entrance into the industry, and Disney's return to form following their 2000s-era Dork Age), and the success of Ted (an adult Deconstructive Parody of the subgenre); the collapse of the genre finally took hold during the mid-2010s, which saw a trio of sequels to previously successful adaptations (2013's The Smurfs 2, 2015's Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip, and 2016's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows) all domestically underperform at the box office. With The Smurfs's third live-action/CG film being nixed for a completely CGI reboot, and no plans for future Alvin or Turtles sequels being put on the table, the sub-genre seems to have entered its death knell.
- The works of Seltzer and Friedberg in the '00s have been blamed for killing parody movies; even slightly better ones like Superhero Movie (probably not helped by being named in the same "<name of genre> Movie" style used by S&F) have been lumped in with their disasters.
- If the 1997 smash hit Titanic created the very specific subgenre of "absurdly big-budget love story used to chronicle a historical disaster"; Pearl Harbor in 2001 sure as hell ended it. Pompeii only confirmed that it was dead.
- School of Rock in 2003, being a send-up of inspirational teacher movies, basically killed that sub-genre and created a new type of sub-genre where the teachers are rather useless (such as Half Nelson and Bad Teacher). Attempts at reigniting the sub-genre (such as Freedom Writers and Larry Crowne) have been critical and box office disappointments. Some may argue that the genre's still alive in the form of "Inspirational Coach Movies" such as Coach Carter, We Are Marshall, and The Blind Side.
- Lara Croft: Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life in 2003, Catwoman in '04, and Elektra in '05 killed off the idea of the female action protagonist in Hollywood cinema for quite a long time, with writer David Hayter claiming that the Black Widow movie that was in the works at the time was shelved for this reason. Later big-budget Hollywood movies did have Action Girls, but usually in secondary roles as love interests or fanservice characters. Haywire and Salt both attempted to revive the genre and did moderately well, but not enough to create a critical mass in its favor. Since then, the massive success of The Hunger Games franchise, as well as the growing demand for superhero movies starring someone other than White Male Leads, has led to WB finally releasing a Wonder Woman movie in 2017, as well as Marvel announcing a Captain Marvel movie for 2018. The critical and commercial success of Wonder Woman solidified the viability of female-led action/superhero films as major blockbusters (see below).
- While, in hindsight, the writing was on the wall for the V/H/S format as a viable platform for major home media releases from the moment DVDs took off, the VHS release of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban in 2004 is said to have sped the process along by several years. To wit: the film was made using Super 35, an extremely open film format that allowed for a variety of compositions, and yet the pan-and-scan VHS release was just that — panned and scanned from an anamorphic Scope print, and horribly so, by some videophile accounts. It's telling that releases for the niche D-VHS format stopped shortly after, and major label releases on VHS stopped by 2007. It's been said that director Alfonso Cuarón hated the Academy ratio so much he deliberately sabotaged the 4:3 composition on the VHS release, with some theorizing Cuaron wanted to give DVD the shot in the arm he felt it needed to definitively secure its then-recent lead over VHS.
- In 2004, the films Fat Slags and Sex Lives of the Potato Men proved so bad that there was actually concern in the UK that the entire British film industry was going down the tubes. The £1 million grant that Potato Men had received from the National Lottery through the UK Film Council was especially criticized. It turned out to be a false alarm, with British cinema surviving into the present day, but it takes a special kind of film to make an entire country think that its film studios are in trouble.
- The 40-Year-Old Virgin in 2005 and Superbad in 2007 are often credited with killing the teen sex comedy. On one hand, the success of The 40-Year-Old Virgin proved that sex comedies aimed squarely at grown adults (with teenagers playing only supporting roles) could be just as successful as teen-oriented films like American Pie. On the other, Superbad mocked and deconstructed the genre so viciously that viewers could no longer take it seriously, cementing the public view of teen sex comedies as being weird, pathetic, lowbrow schlock that toed the line between sexy and sexist. The rise of internet porn, allowing such films' target audience to easily access far more explicit material than what could be shown in an R-rated film (as outlined in this article), merely read the genre's obituary. Subsequent attempts at reviving the genre, like Project X, have been widely reviled.
- xXx: State of the Union in 2005 (according to Mathew "Film Brain" Buck in his Bad Movie Beatdown series) killed the early-mid '00s trend of fast, modern, teen-oriented action films centered on extreme sports (i.e. The Fast and the Furious, the original xXx, and their many copycats). While the Fast film series, which pioneered the trend, is still going strong today, later installments have focused more on straightforward action and car chases as opposed to the earlier, more extreme sports-centered installments.
- Basic Instinct 2 in 2006, besides derailing Sharon Stone's career as an A-list leading lady (ironically while reprising her Star-Making Role), also (at least according to Den of Geek) served as the final nail in the coffin to the erotic thriller genre.
- The 2006 remake of 1974's Black Christmas was so badly received (despite doing well at the box office) that it convinced Hollywood not to give the Christmas Horror genre another chance for almost a decade. Director Glen Morgan blamed the studio for the poor reception, saying he was unhappy with Dimension Films ordering dozens of reshoots and script rewrites to the movie, though backlash from Moral Guardians regarding the film's content and release date (it was released on Christmas Day) could also be to blame. It wasn't until around 2015 when another Christmas Horror movie, Krampus, was released to theaters. Thankfully, Krampus was both favorably received and was an instant box office success, sparking hope that the genre may be headed back to Hollywood interest.
- The twin failures of 2007's Hostel Part II and Captivity marked the beginning of the end for the Torture Porn subgenre of graphically ultraviolent horror films. The Saw series endured for a few more years as a Franchise Zombie, but the only other subsequent standalone theatrical release in the genre, 2009's The Collector, played to empty theaters, and Hostel Part III went Direct-to-Video. The Human Centipede, which was marketed as an inevitable Cult Classic, was only played at midnight in most places, and the notorious A Serbian Film had only a single theatrical showing. Driving the final nails in the coffin was Paranormal Activity in 2009, a film at the complete opposite end of the horror spectrum that, through its mounting word-of-mouth popularity, easily blocked Saw VI from the #1 spot on the weekend before Halloween despite playing in over a thousand fewer theaters than Saw VI did.
- 2007's Bratz singlehandedly killed theatrical films based on doll franchises, a fact not helped along by the frame of mind they were up against to begin with. This was shown very clearly with the fate of Kit Kittredge: An American Girl the following year. Despite critics calling it a far superior film and the franchise having been going strong since the 1980s and thus having a built-in nostalgia market, Kit made even less money, largely due to theatres not wanting to give doll-line movies another chance. Kit Kittredge was barely advertised on TV and in theatres, and it had very short planned runs. Some cinemas even waited up to a month after its release just to make room to show the thing. Since then, all future American Girl movies have been direct-to-video and have followed their modern Girls of the Year rather than the flagship historical line; later Bratz movies are also direct-to-video and do not follow the live-action theatrical movie's canon. Monster High was apparently going to get a theatrical movie in the 2010s, but that hasn't been heard from in a long time and it too is only releasing DTV. The box-office failure of the Live-Action Adaptation of Jem and the Holograms only confirmed it was dead.
- Speed Racer in 2008 killed WB's plans for any future PG-rated blockbusters. It's even been stated that the film killed a proposed Shazam movie that was in the works at the time, in favor of Darker and Edgier superhero flicks like The Dark Knight and Man of Steel. It's also telling that literally nobody expected Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince to be rated PG... not that its success changed WB's mind about PG-rated blockbusters. Furthering this attitude is the box-office failure of Pan in favor of works like Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad (2016).
- Twilight in 2008 and The Hunger Games in 2012 killed the child-led blockbuster franchises that Harry Potter had popularised. The young adult novels featuring child protagonists stopped getting adapted in favour of books with teen protagonists — and films such as The Giver and 7th Son aged up their twelve-year-old protagonists significantly. Not helping matters was the Harry Potter leads also having entered their twenties by the time the final films were made. Disney felt the effects of this too with Alice in Wonderland (2010) and Oz: The Great and Powerful — based on stories with child protagonists, but featuring adults as the leads instead. Pan was an attempt at a child-led franchise that ended up bombing spectacularly. Warner Bros. later focused the film adaptation of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them on adult protagonist Newt Scamander, to much greater success critically and commercially.
- Not one film in particular, but the 2000s trend of remaking Asian horror films for Americans ended soon after 2008, which had no fewer than three movies of this type reach wide release — One Missed Call, The Eye, and Shutter. While they turned a profit, all three were poorly reviewed (especially One Missed Call, which has 0% on Rotten Tomatoes) and none were what you'd call big hits. This, combined with the fact that the found footage horror trend had started that year with Quarantine and Cloverfield, killed off the subgenre (the last entry was January 2009's The Uninvited).
- In the 2000s, most romance movies, with few exceptions (such as Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and (500) Days of Summer), could be split into two camps: a) pandering rom-coms occupied by the likes of Jennifer Aniston and Katherine Heigl, and b) weepy, melodramatic movies that copied The Notebook. How Do You Know in 2010 and Bridesmaids in 2011 killed the first type, the former due to its Troubled Production (the result of director James L. Brooks' perfectionism causing the budget to spiral out of control), and the latter by way of raising the bar and successfully adapting the Judd Apatow style of raunchy humor and character-focused writing to a female-oriented comedy. While straight examples of type B still exist somewhat, if only due to Nicholas Sparks' name recognition, it's commonly accepted that, for most modern films that fall into that category, you have to do something unique like making the guy a teenage alcoholic, making the guy and girl have cancer, or having the girl be an AI system.
- The box office failures of Green Lantern in 2011, Battleship in 2012, The Lone Ranger in 2013, and Tomorrowland and Fantastic Four in 2015 caused many film studios to rethink their strategies concerning big-budget summer blockbusters. One of the most apparent victims was Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, which got delayed for at least another year. Disney in particular announced that it will only make live-action blockbusters based on the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars, and the Disney Animated Canon, while putting a halt to all further development of science fiction films outside those franchises, including a planned sequel to TRON: Legacy.
- This article by Bloody-Disgusting makes the case that Paranormal Activity 4 and The Devil Inside in 2013 killed the found footage horror film, at least within the mainstream. After PA4's marked decline in quality compared to prior entries in the series (which had helped popularize found footage to begin with), and The Devil Inside's misleading advertising and frustrating lack of ending, audiences became skeptical of similar efforts in the subgenre. This led to subsequent found footage films like Devil's Due, the final two Paranormal Activity films, and As Above, So Below underperforming at the box office; most subsequent hits in the genre, like V/H/S and Willow Creek, have largely been on the indie circuit.
- The critical and box office failures of Movie 43 and Inappropriate Comedy in 2013 have seemed to kill the anthology movie altogether, after it had mostly been on life support for the past two decades. Cloud Atlas seemed to be a brief shot in the arm for the genre, but even that failed to be a hit.
- While the triplet failures of Beautiful Creatures, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, and Vampire Academy weren't enough to kill the YA novel adaptation as a whole, they were enough to kill off the Paranormal Romance subgenre, which had been on its way out in YA literature as far back as late 2010. The failures of the latter two were bad enough to cause studios to rethink their YA adaptation strategies, going for the ones that were bound to make a lot of money from the get-go — namely, dystopian Sci-Fi (not helping matters was that the The Mortal Instruments series was already getting flak from the community for being extremely derivative). The Twilight series survived into 2012, but only as a Franchise Zombie. Since 2012, with The Hunger Games popularizing YA dystopian fiction, its success was enough to finally get the long-awaited adaptations of The Giver, Ender's Game, The Maze Runner, and Divergent made.
- The failure of Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse in 2015 ended the zombie film boom that began over a decade prior with 28 Days Later and Dawn of the Dead (2004). With the Zombieland sequel in Development Hell and World War Z failing to launch a franchise, zombie films are rapidly dropping in popularity. Zombie TV shows still remain successful, however, with shows such as The Walking Dead, Z Nation, and iZombie being incredibly popular.
- YA dystopian movies would themselves fall just a few years after YA paranormal romance films with the Box Office Bomb of The Divergent Series: Allegiant in 2016. Not only was this film the final theatrically-released entry in the franchise (there were plans to turn the fourth film, Ascendant, into a Made-for-TV Movie made for television with a reduced budget, that have since been stuck in Development Hell), it seems to have caused studios to take the hint that the genre had grown oversaturated. Perhaps noticing the decline in popularity, 20th Century Fox opted not to split the third Maze Runner book into two films.note It remains to be seen what the new big trend in YA novel adaptations will be.
- The failure of Allegiant movie also put an end to the Movie Multipack trend, after an already lukewarm reception to The Hunger Games: Mockingjay being split in two parts. Shortly after that film bombed, both huge comic-book movie tentpoles Avengers: Infinity War and Justice League were first retitled to lose the words "Part 1" and "Part 2" and then announced to be shooting separately and follow a more traditional model of "a standalone(-ish) movie with a sequel" instead of being a Multipack experience. At this point, the only remaining announced Movie Multipack examples would be Film/Avatar 2 to Avatar 5, which are currently still planed to shoot concurrently and to be released one year from another.
- Yellowface in movies was never really critically popular, especially after the abolition of miscegenation laws that had forced it to take place in such classics as The Good Earth and Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing and the growing presence and influence of Asians in Hollywood. However, the 2017 Hollywood adaptation Ghost in the Shell may very well be the final nail in the coffin, not just for that but also for racial insensitivity in general in mainstream Hollywood movies. Not helping are the successes of such films as Get Out and the ethnically-diverse The Fast and the Furious film franchise, nor a threatened boycott of Netflix over their adaptation of Death Note, due for release in the summer of 2017.
- Don Quixote's deconstruction of the Chivalric Romance, in which the main character (and the archetype he represented) is portrayed as insane and idiotic, is widely credited with helping to kill the genre. The genre was already in its death throes about a decade before Cervantes' novel, but it certainly dealt the final blow. Two hundred years later, Lord Byron complained about this in Don Juan:
Cervantes smiled Spain's chivalry away;
A single laugh demolished the right arm
Of his own country; — seldom since that day
Has Spain had heroes.
- Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert deconstructed romantic fiction archetypes, helping to end the era of romanticism in fiction and making way for realism.
- The American Civil War killed off plantation literature, also known as 'anti-Tom' literature, a genre that emerged in the 1850s in response to the anti-slavery novel Uncle Tom's Cabin. Mostly written by writers from the Southern United States (though a few writers were Northern 'doughfaces' who sympathized with the South and its 'peculiar institution'), these novels were author tracts dedicated to portraying plantation slavery as a benign, benevolent system that was beneficial to the 'childlike Negroes' and served as the bedrock of civilization, and abolitionists as either misguided Soapbox Sadies or the very incarnation of pure evil. Nowadays, the genre is Deader Than Disco together with slavery itself, remembered only as a historical curiosity in the grand scheme of the run-up to the Civil War.
- World War I largely killed the "invasion story" genre, which typically detailed foreign invasions of the British Isles by some flavor of Germans or French (depending on who Britain had higher tensions with at the moment). The War of the Worlds, while a more fantastical spin than the norm, is the most well-known example. The genre still persisted post-WWI, with communists or aliens replacing the Europeans as the go-to foe of choice (covert invasions were a staple of pulp literature right up until World War II), but it never regained anything close to its former popularity. Instead, it was replaced by Spy Fiction during the Cold War and techno-thrillers afterwards, both of which can be seen as spiritual successors of a sort to the genre.
- A Song of Ice and Fire, along with its television adaptation, Game of Thrones, has done this to a degree for traditional high fantasy. It has become much more rare to see new high fantasy since the series' rise in popularity in favor of similarly darker deconstructions of the genre, as well as being Tough Act to Follow. Whether the genre is truly dead remains to be seen.
- The decline of video game strategy guides is sometimes attributed to the official American Final Fantasy IX guide. Square Enix, wanting to promote their site, Playonline.com, forced Prima to gut the entire thing and redirect users to the site for more info. Considering the game came out in 2000, it was outright impossible for many to connect to the internet; those who could found the site was barely any improvement over a print guide, and considering it was rare for people to have their desktop set up in the same room as their TV and game consoles, it was incredibly inconvenient to access while actually playing the game, to boot. Many purchasers ended up finding sites like GameFAQs, and many buyers, figuring it was the general direction of strategy guides from that point forward, stopped buying them. Nowadays, Strategy Guides are usually only found in stores dedicated to gaming, and even then, it's usually only in a small section of it.
- The Quiz Show was discredited for about fifteen years in the US after a series of scandals in The '50s, in which it was learned that a number of popular quiz shows (most notably 21) were being rigged in order to increase tension, bring in ratings, and to give the victory to the contestant the producers wanted to win. After the scandals, the focus of questions generally shifted from knowledge to word games and puzzles, and low-stakes panel games like To Tell the Truth were at their peak. Jeopardy! helped America trust quiz shows again in 1964, but it was not until about 1973 and The $10,000 Pyramid when game shows really began offering five-figure sums again note . Even after the genre came back into vogue, the effects of the scandals left a permanent mark; these new game shows had winnings caps and somewhat smaller amounts of money to be won, and it wouldn't be until 1998 when really big-money games returned in the form of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
- The return to more "traditional" game shows in the 70s and 80s brought new shows that actually had game to them, like the aforementioned Pyramid, along with The Price Is Right, Tic-Tac-Dough, The Joker's Wild, and Family Feud, and thus helped kill off panel games in The '70s and The '80s. That particular death was culminated in 1990 with a short-lived revival of To Tell the Truth that went through five hosts in the course of one season.
- And then the nighttime syndicated versions of Wheel of Fortunenote and Jeopardy! (which began in 1983 and 1984, respectively, and aren't going anywhere in the near future) killed off the concept of daytime game shows by The '90s — between 1992 and 2008, Price was the only game show on daytime network television.
- And on that topic, the saturation of Millionaire, as well as several big-name copycats, mostly killed off the big-money prime-time game show genre by the mid to late 2000s. It was given a shot in the arm with Deal or No Deal (and the 2007 WGA strike helped to extend that shot), but Deal quickly devolving into a gimmick-fest (making its ultra-bare-bones format all the more blatantly obvious) while concurrently falling into Millionaire-esque Wolverine Publicity, combined with the failure of Million Dollar Money Drop and Million Second Quiz, pretty much put the finishing touches on the genre.
- The Variety Show's demise has been linked to the abject failure of NBC's Pink Lady and Jeff in 1980 note , even though the genre (much like the movie musical) had been in life support for yearsnote . There were a few more shows in the genre afterwards, but none was the kind of blockbuster that could make programmers and audiences forget how bad this one was. Pink Lady and Jeff managed to make David Hofstede's 2004 book What Were They Thinking? The 100 Dumbest Events In Television History, which also took potshots at Fred Silverman, who greenlighted Pink Lady and Jeff and got fired from NBC shortly after the show tanked.
- According to Chris "Rowdy C" Moore of TV Trash, Unhappily Ever After killed off the live-action working-class dysfunctional family sitcom that Married... with Children popularized at the start of the 1990s, along with Roseanne and Grace Under Fire, to be replaced by the age of urban single-based sitcoms like Friends and Seinfeld. Some dysfunctional family shows, like Titus and Malcolm in the Middle cropped up in the early 2000s and gained positive to mixed reviews, but it wasn't enough to revive the genre. The American version of Shameless is trying to turn this around (or, at the very least, reinvent the genre for premium cable).
- Married... with Children and, to a lesser extent The Simpsons, killed off the functional family sitcom boom of the late '80s heralded by The Cosby Show. Even shows inspired by Cosby, like Home Improvement or Everybody Loves Raymond are more cynical than The Cosby Show. Averted however for many black family sitcoms of the '90s which came about because of Cosby such as Family Matters and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. See Minority Show Ghetto.
- Though critically acclaimed and considered a Cult Classic today, the ratings failure and early cancellation of Action basically assured that the TV-MA rating is more or less a kiss of death for a network show and there has never been an attempt by the Big Four since for a truly adult-aimed comedic series. It's a different story on cable, where less restrictive rules allow for more creative freedom.
- The failure of Pablo y Andrea (2005) caused Televisa to stop producing telenovelas aimed at children. By the time that telenovela came out, most of the target audience had just lost interest in the limited plots said novelas offered, most of which were of the "kids having magical and musical adventures with a bit of drama" variety that were over-commercialized to the point of Hype Backlash.
Similarly, the lukewarm reception of Niña de mi corazón (2010), seems to have caused the same network to stop producing novelas aimed at a teenage audience, since no novelas of that sort have been produced since then. Said genre had been very popular for Televisa since the late 80s. Both examples can be explained due to the fact that most children and teenagers just prefer to play videogames or be on the Internet nowadays instead of watching novelas (or TV in general).
- The massive failure of The Magic Hour (and to a lesser extent, The Kenan Ivroy Wayans Show and Vibe a season prior) pretty much killed the trend of urban-oriented, syndicated, late night talk shows (and syndicated late night talk shows in general) for the next 15 years, until Arsenio Hall revived his talk show in September 2013.
- A temporary example: The failure of Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior put a halt on shows getting random spin-offs despite the success of shows like NCIS: Los Angeles. It was a combination of a lackluster show and a fandom revolt since to fund the show, they had to end the contracts of two main female characters on Criminal Minds. This outraged not only the fans, but the actresses and the entire production team. It's no surprise that after Suspect Behavior ended, CBS rehired Paget Brewster and AJ Cook. The upcoming NCIS New Orleans and Once Upon a Time in Wonderland in late 2013 look to restore the trend a little bit, but for 2011-12, spin-offs were notably sparse.
Another factor in the death of spin-offs was the show Torchwood: Miracle Day. The show was already in trouble when BBC had to sell production rights to Starz Entertainment, however the show was met with overwhelmingly negative reception from the fans and critics. Torchwood was already a Love It or Hate It show seeing as it was a more adult-oriented spinoff from family-friendly Doctor Who, but added Americanitis in addition to Jack Harkness and Gwen Cooper being reduced to a side-story in their own show and an unnecessary Romantic Plot Tumor with Jack having a new boyfriend didn't help matters either. The negative reception of the show was also enough to put Torchwood as a whole on hiatus, and its future remains uncertain as of 2016 (it can't have a Fully Absorbed Finale in Doctor Who due to its adults-only nature, especially after all this time, but it's not popular enough to warrant closure on its own).
- MTV's Boy Band spoof 2ge+her arguably struck one of the first blows in the slow death of MTV itself by exposing a number of cynical tropes about how their flagship music program, Total Request Live, operated in the late '90s/early '00s. YouTube also killed off their original flagship tradition of showing music videos on the channel. After all, why watch MTV in the hopes that some particular music video will play on it when you can go straight to it online?
- This article by Bob Chipman argues that The Colbert Report killed off the Pompous Political Pundit Talk Show by parodying its form and style so effectively that it became impossible (especially for younger Gen-X and millennial viewers) to take seriously anymore. While The O'Reilly Factor, the main show that Stephen Colbert was parodying, remained on the air, it and shows like it have notably ceased to be the dominant programming on the Fox News Channel, their viewerships notably trending much older while the new faces of the network (like Greg Gutfeld and Megyn Kelly) largely eschew the style. O'Reilly's firing in 2017 furthered this trend.
- The Office, Extras and The Thick of It, while not outright killing the classic Brit Com format, made them seem like quaint relics of the 1960s and '70s, and resulted in critics generally losing respect for the classic style. Fewer and fewer of them have been produced as the 2000s and 2010s have progressed, and some are predicting that the horribly-received The Wright Way, made by Brit Com mainstay Ben Elton, may prove to be the final nail in the coffin for it as an art form, with the few holdouts being critical failures, regardless of how popular they can be. And beyond the U.K. they're even deader: Cable networks/blocks like BBC America, Comedy Central, and Adult Swim used to import/rerun the most popular British sitcoms and sketch comedy shows to North America regularly, but have completely given up on them in The New '10s. BBC America doesn't have one comedy on its schedule as of 2016, preferring to focus on Top Gear, Doctor Who, dramatic series/miniseries, documentary shows, and The Graham Norton Show. (In fact, the last time they aired a British comedy series in any capacity was an after-hours run of the final season of The Thick of It in 2015 — and only because the lead actor went on to be the current lead of Doctor Who.)
- An episode of the very loved Belgian investigative journalism series Basta called De mol in het belspel, known for bringing up the unfair practices of the Belgian phone-in game shows at the time by deconstructing or reconstructing pretty much all the phone-in game show formats that exist, allowed één, who already did not permit phone-in game shows on their own network, to have so much control over the phone-in game show format that Medialaan, the only company that aired those type of shows, was forced to cancel pretty much every single phone-in game show that they ever created. While it only had an effect on the game shows that were airing in Flanders, it killed off pretty much the entire phone-in game show genre there, to the point that some people think that the genre is banned in Belgium.
- Soap operas may be popular in the US, the UK, Latin American countries among others, but one country they'll never be popular in is Canada, thanks to the 2000s notorious flop Train 48. The show was an attempt at persuading networks in Canada to have their own soaps, however the show was, reception-wise and production-wise, a disaster. The show was a loosely-based remake of popular Australian improvised dramedy Going Home, which was about a number of commuters chatting about popular topics at night on a commuter train.
The show had an admittedly novel production concept - the show would be (sort-of) written, filmed, edited and broadcast all in the same day, on an actual replica train traveling from Toronto to Burlington, with improvisation by the actors. This probably would have been a good idea had anyone had a clue what they were doing. The actors clearly had no idea how to make the improv flow, and the discussion topics were both incredibly dull, and inaccessible to people who had no idea what they were talking about. The show also had gotten criticism for its poor audio mixing (the actors couldn't even be heard at times over the trains' loud engines) and Jittercam (which did get better as the show neared its end, but not by much). When the writers had heard of these criticisms, they attempted to spice things up in 2005 by bringing in comedy (which predictably failed - one such case was a mother being fooled into thinking the video game Halo was a game about catching angel halos), "dramatic" storylines about outlandish concepts like a snake getting loose on the train, or someone getting shot, or hostage threats - none of these worked and after 2 years, the show was abruptly halted in 2005 due to increasingly worse reception and ratings. Another criticism was that the show never made it clear where people were going, so the final scene showed the characters getting off the train in Burlington.
The poor ratings (the show was featured in the 7:30 death slot too - this was before digital cable and satellite with "Eastern time channels" were more popular), production costs of $45,000 per episode, and awful reception not only killed the idea as a whole, but also convinced some networks to drop their airings of American or British soaps too, and the show is seen as one of the worst Canadian TV shows of all time.
- Power Rangers was such a success that no other American tokusatsu adaptation has been able to get too far off the ground. Usually they just end up viewed as ripoffs.
- VH1 released a host of popular "celebreality" dating shows in the mid- to late 2000s, starting with Flavor of Love (itself a spin-off of a spin-off), which ran for several seasons, and the next most popular series, Rock Of Love, where contestants would compete to date celebrities Flavor Flav and Bret Michaels, respectively. Popular losing bachelorettes from those shows ended up getting their own dating shows such as I Love New York, Daisy of Love, and Megan Wants a Millionaire, and losers from those shows even got their own spinoffs (Real Chance of Love). Popular contestants from Flavor of Love and eventually Rock of Love would end up on Charm School, while all contestants were eligible to compete for money on I Love Money. Though spin-offs kept multiplying, the genre itself was already suffering — not only were ratings dipping lower as viewers started losing interest in Z-listers whose only claim to fame was being in a genre perceived as seedy and trashy, but many the channel was oversaturated with spin-offs, as well as the fact that the scripted nature of the apparent "reality" series, though always apparent, was getting more and more obvious. The death blow to the "celebreality" genre came at the close of the decade with a contestant named Ryan Jenkins, who was a competitor in Megan Wants a Millionaire and won the third season of I Love Money. Jenkins's wife Jasmine was found dead with Jenkins the only suspected killer; he committed suicide while attempting to flee. VH1 quickly pulled the plug on the remaining episodes of Megan and cancelled I Love Money without showing Jenkins's winning season, broadcasting only the already-filmed fourth season after a year. By then, the passing of time and the shock of the violent incident chilled most interest in the genre, and VH1 has toned down reality programming in general to this day, with most of the celebreality contestants, the majority of whom failed to achieve fame outside of VH1, fading into obscurity.
- In the Philippines, celebrity gossip talk shows used to be dominate the afternoon weekend timeslots and was a favorite past time for the celebrity-obsessed viewers. However on the midst of social networking where many Filipinos rather read the news online and many celebrities rather discuss their views on their social media accounts, the gossip talk shows slowly lost their purpose. As a result, the longest-running talk shows such as ABS-CBN's The Buzz and GMA Network's Startalk ended up cancelled and the afternoon weekend timeslots are filled for Tagalog-dubbed movies instead.
Music — Rock/Metal
- The Day the Music Died: the deaths of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper in a plane crash on February 3, 1959 effectively killed rockabilly and traditional Rock & Roll as music genres.
- Progressive Rock has had several points that are regarded as killing the genre.
- One of the last albums from Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Love Beach in 1978, is one of the most despised albums in music history, which the band was forced to make to meet out their record deal. The album largely abandoned the prog sound in favor of disco and dance music.
- The 1983 album Alpha, the second album of supergroup Asia, featuring members of Yes, King Crimson, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, and several other prog legends, was regarded as a failure musically, and severely damaged prog's reputation. Said reputation was already in sustained free-fall by the time of Asia's 1982 debut (Robert Fripp himself intimated as much back in 1975). Most (surviving) '70s prog bands were already greatly simplifying their sounds by 1980, in response to Punk and New Wave; Asia, by their utter failure to craft anything remotely reminiscent/worthy of prog's '70s heyday, merely confirmed prog's demise for those who hadn't gotten the hint yet.
- In that vein, Styx's 1983 album Kilroy Was Here seems to have been the final nail in the coffin for the Rock Opera and the Concept Album (no successful examples of which had come out since Pink Floyd's The Wall four years earlier, anyway). It took twenty years for another rock opera concept album, Green Day's American Idiot in 2004, to enjoy massive success.
- Shoegazing is a rare example — an album so good it killed its own genre for quite some time. My Bloody Valentine's 1991 Loveless is widely believed to have turned shoegazing into a Dead Horse Genre nonetheless, with almost every other band in the scene receiving a hostile critical reaction for trying to sound like My Bloody Valentine. The fact that My Bloody Valentine's third album, m b v, was 22 years in the making did not help at all, and the scene was soon supplanted by Britpop. This ended up derailing more than a few careers (Slowdive was notably plagued by this, even though Souvlaki is now often mentioned in the same breath as Loveless). Fortunately, it wasn't permanent — interest in shoegazing started to come back in the 2000s and '10s.
- One of the most famous stories in rock music is that the rise of grunge, particularly the sudden success of Nirvana's album Nevermind in 1991, did this to hair metal in the early '90s. In truth, hair metal was already on life support for a couple of years by that point, with at least three connected moments that can each be pointed to as genre killers, grunge only being the last of them. The first was the 1988 documentary The Decline of Western Civilization Part II: The Metal Years, which is often credited with starting the backlash against hair metal thanks to its uncensored display of the hedonistic excesses of many bands and musicians. It's been joked that Warrant and WASP did more to kill hair metal than Nirvana and Pearl Jam ever did, and they're only half-joking. Second, in the subsequent years all manner of Darker and Edgier bands like The Black Crowes, Guns N' Roses, Pantera (itself a former hair metal band that abandoned the genre), and Queensr˙che pushed hair metal off the rock charts. However, what few will argue is that grunge landed the death blow by giving a unified image to the growing backlash. While it didn't kill hair metal, it certainly wrote its obituary and buried its remains.
Since hair metal was the dominant genre of metal music within the mainstream rock scene, metal as a whole faded from the limelight for much of The '90s as a result. Some genres, however, managed to avoid this. The general rule was that, as long as you paid due reverence to '80s Alternative Rock (The Smiths, R.E.M.) and Hardcore Punk (Minor Threat, Black Flag), or you were playing something abrasive and unquestionably anti-mainstream, it was okay to play metal in The '90s.
- Classic heavy metal (Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, et cetera) and its spiritual successors, doom metal and sludge metal, survived mainly because of the heavy influence those genres had on the development of grunge. Black Sabbath, for example, are cited as influences by Soundgarden, Green River, Mudhoney, The Smashing Pumpkins, Tad, and many others, while the sludge metal band the Melvins also had a major influence on grunge, taking influence from '80s hardcore punk.
- Thrash metal didn't even skip a beat, with three of the "big four" bands (Metallica, Megadeth, and Anthrax) enjoying their best album sales shortly after the death of hair metal. Members of Metallica have even mentioned that they saw the rise of grunge as a good thing, meaning that radio stations and MTV were willing to take a chance on heavier music and darker themes. Somehow-these-aren't-hair-metal-for-some-arcane-reason bands like Van Halen and Guns N' Roses stayed popular during grunge's early phase, and fell off more due to interpersonal conflict than chart failure.
- Alternative metal and groove metal, like grunge, emerged as a backlash against hair metal, becoming the defining metal sounds of the '90s for many American listeners. Alice in Chains, Soundgarden, and Faith No More were among the defining alt-metal bands of the era, and were often associated with the grunge aesthetic by mainstream listeners. Meanwhile, Pantera, the biggest groove metal band of the '90s, consistently managed to fill large arenas, and their album Far Beyond Driven even managed to debut at #1 on the Billboard 100 (making it probably the heaviest and least-mainstream album to ever accomplish that feat). Billy Corgan even praised Dimebag as his favorite contemporary guitarist. By the late '90s, the two genres, along with other, smaller subgenres (particularly rap metal), fused together in the mainstream consciousness and morphed into Nu Metal, which has its own section below.
- Death Metal and Black Metal both took off and hit their peaks in The '90s. While they rarely, if ever, received radio airplay, they made for a particularly popular target for the era's Moral Guardians in both the US and Europe due to the brutality of the music itself, the lyrical subject matter, and (in the case of black metal) the musicians' militant anti-Christian messages that often went well beyond the music.
- Grunge itself had two moments in 1994 that can be pointed to as Genre Killers, the trend in both of them being the genre's anti-commercial attitude running head-first into its sudden mainstream popularity. First, Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain was Driven to Suicide over his heroin addiction and his inability to reconcile his values with his success, which not only took out the biggest band in the scene, but made many rock fans leery of the Darker and Edgier attitudes that were synonymous with grungenote . It's probably not a coincidence that Hootie & the Blowfish, a band whose twangy, wholesome, down-home folk rock was the Spiritual Antithesis of everything that grunge stood for, took off just a few months later, as did Blues Traveler, a jam band whose hit single "Hook" was a Take That! at the "hip three-minute ditties" that dominated pop and rock radio. Second, Pearl Jam got into a nasty fight with Ticketmaster over their anti-consumer business practices, resulting in them canceling their tour that summer and finding it nearly impossible to tour nationally afterwards, which dealt a crippling blow to the fortunes of the second-biggest band in the scene.
Grunge continued to limp along in the absence of Nirvana and Pearl Jam, but as a whole, it faded from the limelight over the next few years. Sean O'Neal of the AV Club points to 1996 as the year when grunge and Alternative Rock in general "died a messy, forgettable death", as it was the year the remaining "Big Four" Seattle grunge bands (Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, and Alice in Chains) reached their nadirs of popularity and, in the case of the latter two, ultimately saw the seeds planted for their breakups, while the assorted copycats started falling away. Most importantly, however, by that point what had started out as a backlash against corporate hair metal had essentially been taken over by the record industry, turning into Post-Grunge. A more polished and radio-friendly version of grunge that sanded off many of its more abrasive edges, post-grunge dominated mainstream American rock music for the rest of the decade, eventually converging with hard rock and the remnants of nu metal and dominating the next decade as well. Many years later, post-grunge would follow a similar fate, as detailed below.
- In the UK, meanwhile, grunge only lasted for a couple of years before getting hit with backlash. Britpop emerged in the early-mid '90s as a Lighter and Softer reaction to the dourness of grunge, and quickly supplanted it in mainstream popularity there. By 1994, Bush was the only grunge or post-grunge band seeing any success in the UK, and even then, they were far more popular in the US than they were in their native Britain.
- Be Here Now, the notorious 1997 flop by Oasis, is generally regarded as having killed Britpop. It was actually a major success initially, earning gushing praise from criticsnote and selling eight million copies. However, once people had the chance to actually listen to it, they found that it was nowhere near as good as their first two albums, let alone the masterpiece that had been hyped up for months and which critics had been gushing about. The result was massive Hype Backlash that took the shine off of the biggest band in Britpop. Only a handful of bands wound up surviving the collapse of Britpop for more than a couple years.
- A major factor in Britpop's demise? Probably. However, on top of the above, Blur — the other band most associated with the scene (and Oasis' arch-rivals in 1995's "Battle of Britpop") — had already broken away from it a few months prior with their eponymous album (primarily lo-fi and US alt-rock-influenced). Another arguable factor may be that by 1997 "Cool Britannia" had jumped on Britpop's bandwagon, with (e.g.) Geri Halliwell in a Union Jack dress and honeymoon-era Tony Blair schmoozing Britpop stars. This got old fast, and probably helped kill off the remainder of Britpop when it derailed.
- blur's "Song 2" is often considered to be the last real "Britpop" hit, and even then, it sounds nothing like anything else in the genre, having specifically been written to parody Nirvana-style grunge.
- The death of Post-Grunge came with the backlash towards Creed and Nickelback about their music being overplayed on the radio.
- The 2003 albums Results May Vary by Limp Bizkit and Take a Look in the Mirror by Korn played a huge role in killing Nu Metal. A fusion of Alternative Metal, Industrial Metal, and Rap Metal influences, nu metal emerged in the late '90s and was seen as an antidote to the bubblegum boy bands, girl groups, and idol singers that ruled the world of pop music after the fall of grunge, bringing metal back to the forefront of youth culture for the first time since the '80s. Nu metal reached the peak of its popularity in the years 1998-2001, but before long, came to be stereotyped as a genre of wangsty lyrics, phony machismo, and grating instrumentation that substituted technical skill with sheer noise. By 2002, nu metal was earning the mockery of metalheads as a pale shadow of "real" metal, and albums by major bands like Korn and Papa Roach were producing diminishing returns on the charts. The tipping point came in 2003, when Limp Bizkit and Korn released the aforementioned albums to a reception that ranged from mixed to scathing, with Bizkit's cover of "Behind Blue Eyes" coming in for especially heated criticism as borderline rock sacrilege. By 2004, nu metal's reign on the rock charts was over, with emo and metalcore emerging in its place, and most of the bands involved with the genre quickly changing their sound to get away from it. Papa Roach quickly recovered with their sole Top 40 hit "Scars", and they remain popular on mainstream rock radio to this day. Korn took a beating, only to recover in the new tens, by adapting dubstep into their style and scoring their first-ever #1 rock hit in 2013. But Limp Bizkit fared the worst of all; they became so hated in the USA that they were forced to tour overseas for the rest of their days. Nearly a decade passed before nu metal regained some cultural acceptance, and even then it's not even half as popular as it used to be.
- The Strokes' First Impressions of Earth can be viewed as the breaking point of the post-punk/garage rock revival in the early-mid '00s. This movement had been characterized by elements of punk rock, indie rock, '60s garage rock, and New Wave, combined into a stripped-down, back-to-basics guitar rock that many people at the time felt would be a revolution in rock music comparable to grunge ten years earlier, wiping away the morass of Post-Grunge and Nu Metal just as grunge had wiped away Hair Metal. For a time, it was. Along with The Strokes, bands like The White Stripes, Interpol, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Vines, and The Hives led the movement in both the US and the UK, and from roughly 2002-05 they won widespread critical and commercial success.
By 2006, however, many bands were either gone, had collapsed, or had become more experimental, while in Britain, bands like the Arctic Monkeys, The Fratellis, Bloc Party, and Arcade Fire were leading the way in both Pop Revival and a new wave of indie rock. Only The Strokes and The White Stripes were still active, and even then only barely. First Impressions of Earth's release was repeatedly delayed, and upon its final release was a critical and commercial failure, acting as the final nail in the coffin.
- Broke NCYDE simultaneously codified and killed crunkcore. Their music is just competent enough to have spawned fans and imitators seeing some good in the genre, but hilariously bad enough to make literally everyone else automatically hate the genre.
- Coheed and Cambria's fifth album, 2010's Year of the Black Rainbow, is largely considered to be the final nail in the coffin for the New Prog subgenre of progressive rock, which already seemed to be dwindling as far back as 2005. After a reasonable amount of commercial success from the two Good Apollo albums, the latter of which brought a stadium rock edge to their sound, there was much hype surrounding it (including a reasonable amount of good reviews from people on the Cobalt & Calcium forums who had supposedly already heard the album), with an anticipation level through the roof, leading many to think it could be as heavy and rocking as No World for Tomorrow. Instead, they got the musical equivalent of a Bizarro Episode which largely dabbled in electronic rock, which lead to a very mixed reception and people questioning if they made the album that style just so they could escape the success "Welcome Home" brought them. Their reputation was ruined, and not much had been heard from New Prog bands save for Muse and 30 Seconds to Mars, both of whom had phased out New Prog in favor of Alternative Rock and soon after transitioned to Indie Rock. Fortunately, Coheed survived, but as a result, their following two albums had to be recorded on indie labels.
Music — Other genres
- In parallel with Britpop, the British music press went hot for "intelligent drum'n'bass", the authentic new sound of black inner city Britain. Goldie's Timeless (1995), although a fine album, opened the door for floods of by-the-numbers d'n'b clones, and the genre quickly became a cliché of television background music and film soundtracks. His 1998 follow-up Saturnz Return was slammed by a jaded press as a self-indulgent, pretentious folly. The opening track, "Mother", was over sixty minutes long. Both Goldie and intelligent drum'n'bass subsequently left the charts, never to return.
- Live Earth, a massive benefit concert co-founded by former Vice President Al Gore, was a dismal flop, garnering low ratings (especially for the UK and US) and created a massive "carbon footprint", precisely the type of thing the organizers wanted to prevent. The failure of Live Earth is widely believed to have killed off the concept of the benefit super-concert (in the same vein as Farm Aid and Live 8, though the former is still held annually and the latter had enough of its own issues for it and Live Earth to be considered kind of a one-two punch).
- Depending on where you sit regarding Drum & Bass, Pendulum came close to this, by way of becoming the public face of the genre despite never intending to be in it. Rob Swire himself isn't sure if this has happened, but appears to revel in it, as can be discerned from this extract from his rant on the Dogsonacid forums:
"Oh, and by the way — I'm not sure if drum and bass is dead or dying (I've been in the studio / on tour too long to tell). However, if your genre was flimsy enough to be knocked over by ONE SINGLE RECORDING ARTIST who happened to — god forbid — sell some fucking records for the first time in about 5/6 years, then I'm glad it was us that got to drive the final stake through its stale pig shit heart — and good riddance. Wake me up when your genre is making something that people outside the scene think is worth listening to again."
- Drum & Bass really suffered more from the development and rise of Electro House and Dubstep more than Pendulum; Pendulum even shifted almost completely to a rock style.
- With the recent Electronic Music revival in the United States though, Drum and Bass has seen a (admittedly smaller) comeback of sorts.
- The murder of Tupac Shakur in 1996 and The Notorious B.I.G. in 1997, within six months of one another, put an end to the Golden Age of Gangsta Rap. The Lighter and Softer genre of Glam Rap replaced it in the mainstream for much the same reason why post-grunge replaced grunge after Kurt Cobain's suicide; as The Rap Critic and The Nostalgia Chick put it:
Rap Critic: "[The murder of Biggie and Tupac] was a big wake-up call for hip-hop fans, because two artists that everyone knew were dead, victims of the lifestyle that was promoted in their music. Hip-hop had gone as dark as people wanted it to go, and they wanted something else.
Nostalgia Chick: Suddenly, the dangerous lives and poverty that some of these guys grew up in and rapped about... it was just a little too real. Joe Public wanted something a little nicer, cleaner, you know, still culturally relevant but reminded us of the good old days when rap was fun, and- oh, hey, Will Smith, what's going on? Heard your movie career's doing pretty good! Oh, and what's that you've got there? A new rap song? And it goes with that new summer movie you're in? Oh, and you have a whole album without curse words or references to hard living? Come right on back, Will! We missed you!
- Tupac's death also crippled the West Coast hip-hop scene, which would take over a decade to recover. While the New York-based Bad Boy Records was able to survive Biggie's death (though not without difficulty), the same could not be said of Death Row Records, then the most powerful rap label on the West Coast and running a heated rivalry with Bad Boy. Tupac's death, combined with the myriad legal problems of the label's owner Suge Knight, did irreparable damage to Death Row, causing an exodus of talent in the '00s that culminated in the label going bankrupt in 2006, leaving little more than a shell that survives mainly through Greatest Hits albums and re-releases of its catalog.
* The death of Crunk came with the backlash towards Soulja Boy, whose music was widely considered annoying and a disgrace to hip-hop.
- Tupac's death also crippled the West Coast hip-hop scene, which would take over a decade to recover. While the New York-based Bad Boy Records was able to survive Biggie's death (though not without difficulty), the same could not be said of Death Row Records, then the most powerful rap label on the West Coast and running a heated rivalry with Bad Boy. Tupac's death, combined with the myriad legal problems of the label's owner Suge Knight, did irreparable damage to Death Row, causing an exodus of talent in the '00s that culminated in the label going bankrupt in 2006, leaving little more than a shell that survives mainly through Greatest Hits albums and re-releases of its catalog.
- A notorious case in Canada was Matt Dusk's epic 2006 flop Back in Town, which ended up killing Canada's jazz-pop craze. Yes, believe it or not, there was a jazz-pop craze in Canada that lasted a good chunk of the 2000s. Diana Krall is often credited as the person who started it, with Michael Bublé having furthered it with his international success. Perhaps one of the more unexpected hits was Matt Dusk's debut album Two Shots, released in 2004, which boasted a lead single written by Bono and The Edge. The album was a smash success and one of the top selling records of its year.
Ironically enough, Dusk ended up killing the craze with Back in Town, commonly regarded among Canadian music fans as the textbook definition of a Sophomore Slump. It was much anticipated and hyped, and in fact actually didn't do too bad in its first week of release, debuting at #17 on the Canadian music chart. However, once people actually took the time to listen to it, they got a bizarre, more funk-influenced album that didn't fly well with the public and killed people's interest in him, and jazz-pop as a whole, with his sales taking a spectacular nosedive in the weeks that followed. Only the aforementioned artists ended up surviving the collapse of the subgenre, though Dusk ended up recording two virtually unheard of albums (try naming either of them without looking it up).
- Another Canadian case, which this time seems to have caused the whole world to have taken the hint: Ryan Malcolm, the winner of the first season of Canadian Idol. There was massive hype surrounding him as he has quite the voice, and many voted for him to win, causing Jacob Hoggard (who later would find success with his pop-rock band Hedley, becoming the show's most commercially successful alumnus within Canadian borders) to lose out. What was the result? "Something More", which, despite being successful, was massively hated and even ended up being voted by critics as one of the worst songs of 2003, mainly because of how supremely boring the music was and how cheesy and cliche the lyrics were. The album, despite selling 170,000 copies, ended up being his last, and is often seen as a joke among Canadians. The following year, Kalan Porter suffered the same fate, effectively burying Canadian Idol as a way for future pop stars to be discovered (yes, Carly Rae Jepsen won third on season 5 of Canadian Idol, but her big break came over four years after that show). Since then, very few winners or contestants on any Idol show outside the American version have seen much success — and even then, the last breakout stars from American Idol were season 6 winner Jordin Sparks and season 8 runner-up Adam Lambert. And speaking of him...
- In an example that crosses over with Live-Action TV, Lambert's shocking loss to Kris Allen in season 8 of American Idol, combined with the suspicious circumstances under which Allen's victory took placenote , did lasting damage to the show's credibility and pretty much firmly discredited TV talent shows as a source of future pop music hitmakers. Future seasons of Idol plummeted in the ratings (with season 11 winner Phillip Phillips being a one-off success), the American version of The X Factor was a dud (with Fifth Harmony being the only successful one from said show), and while The Voice has been a ratings hit for NBC, the only real successes from that show have been limited to the Country Music genre, and it's arguably the celebrity judges who get a greater boost from that show. The British version of The X Factor has fared better with its alumni, although even it is starting to slide from its peak.
- Solo teen idols were huge in the '50s and '60s, with artists like Ricky Nelson, Bobby Rydell, Paul Anka, and Fabian Forte dominating the charts through the period. That phenomenon died a quick death in the middle of the decade as teenage girls found a universal idol in The Beatles. A brief revival happened in the '70s with the likes of Bobby Sherman, David and Shaun Cassidy, Donny Osmond, and Leif Garrett, but even then they were stuck in the shadows of groups like The Monkees, The Jackson Five, and the Bay City Rollers, and the second wave died out much faster than the first. For the next three decades, Boy Bands and rock groups would reign supreme whereas hardly any solo teen idols made an impact. A third wave would begin at the turn of the 2010s, when Justin Bieber fever swept the globe. However, the wave would barely last three years, with Bieber ultimately ending up the only major success story in this new generation of teen idols. When a massive backlash against him hit and his public image was destroyed overnight, control of the teenage girl demographic immediately shifted back to boy bands via One Direction, and later, 5 Seconds of Summer.
- Started to shift a bit in 2015, as artists like Shawn Mendes and Charlie Puth became stars.
- In classical music, the symphonies of Ludwig van Beethoven almost killed the genre simply because they were considered so amazing that no composer ever dreamt of surpassing them. Gladly subverted during the 19th century by composers such as Bruckner, Brahms, and importantly Berlioz, who continued the idea of symphonies with programmatic content (which is where Franz Liszt started).
- But then finally, Gustav Mahler is the last big name composer of symphonies. This is probably because his symphonies were so epic and avantgarde (his Symphony of a Thousand in particular) that few people even bothered anymore. The symphony as a genre is nearly dead in Modern Classical, with the most notable exception being Dmitri Shostakovich.
- The Football Association used to release an official anthem for the England team ahead of major international tournaments, to build up hype. That was until David Baddiel and Frank Skinner wrote "Three Lions", performed by the Lightning Seeds for Euro 96. By Baddiel's own admission, it killed off the "football anthem" by virtue of being so good, and becoming so iconic, that no such anthem has been able to surpass it since. The FA stopped commissioning official songs after 2006note , but while unofficial anthems continue to be released, with Dizzee Rascal and James Corden reaching No.1 with "Shout", none of them have achieved anywhere near the lasting popularity of "Three Lions".
- The Milli Vanilli scandal in 1991 effectively killed "traditional" pop music in the United States for nearly a decade. For much of the early-mid '90s, the overnight downfall of one of the biggest pop acts in the nation colored mainstream perceptions of the entire genre, relegating it to dance clubs and fueling the rise of adult alternative singer-songwriters who were seen as more authentic than the manufactured pop acts of the '80s. Only in the very late '90s did bubblegum pop come back into vogue by drawing inspiration from the "Cool Britannia" craze, but it didn't reach mainstream success. Only by the late 2000s/early 2010s pop returned to the musical forefront.
- Thanks to the mixed-to-negative reception of Skrillex's Recess and failure of Knife Party's Abandon Ship, it doesn't look as if Brostep or Electro House becoming a mainstream staple is going to happen any time soon. The former was a case of Hype Backlash and people already having moved on to greener pastures from Brostep, and the music having sounded completely out of place in a music scene dominated by the more hardcore stuff they were known for introducing to the industry. The latter was a result of Knife Party taking far too long to finally release a full LP and instead releasing a string of EPs leading up to it, general band procrastination and "traditional" Electro House becoming Deader Than Disco. Fortunately Skrillex did (somewhat) recover and Jack U (the duo he formed with Diplo), seems to be doing great.
- The most commonly-cited turning point in disco becoming, well, Deader Than Disco was the notorious Disco Demolition Night, a promotion held on July 12, 1979 in which thousands of people brought disco records to a Chicago White Sox double-header in exchange for heavily discounted tickets; the records would be put into a crate and blown up in the middle of the field between games. Most of the people there hadn't come for baseball so much as to watch disco records getting destroyed, and the ensuing riot forced the White Sox to cancel the second game of the night. The affair played a major role in fueling an anti-disco sentiment that had been building for several months by that point (especially among rock fans and people who hated the seemingly effeminate and/or the over-sexualized aspects that the disco lifestyle represented), and disco was virtually gone from the airwaves by the end of 1980. Steve Dahl, the Chicago rock DJ who helped organize the event, has said that, while Disco Demolition Night didn't singlehandedly destroy disco, it did play a large role in hastening its demise. In the UK, disco music began to lose popularity as soon as Margaret Thatcher came into 10 Downing that same year, as her squad of Moral Guardians, which included Ian Paisley and Mary Whitehouse, saw the genre as a symbol of debauchery.
- The genre-killer of the "bro-country" movement is widely considered to be Maddie & Tae's "Girl in a Country Song", a song that satirized and deconstructed all of its stereotypes and became a #1 hit in 2014.
- The rise of the "British Invasion" and the market's shift towards teenagers during the mid-60s did away with many genres, but novelty songs became the hardest hit, not helped by the fact JFK's assassination also affected the genre's popularity. Very few novelty songs have been made since then, although "The Streak" became a #1 hit in 1974.
- Similarly, the "comedy album" genre that became popular during the 60s and 70s was killed off in the 80s by the one-two-punch of the appearance of the "concert film", which made albums redundant. Then came "Weird Al" Yankovic, whose parodies became so popular that few would dare to compete with him.
- The separation of India and Pakistan into two separate countries significantly weakened professional wrestling in both and led to the decline of almost all forms of wrestling, even those invented in India such as Pahelwani, as the Maharajas who enjoyed the contests and ensured the athletes could make a living at it suddenly found themselves without wealth or power. Professional Wrestling retained a cult following and aspiring Indian pro wrestlers such as Dara Singh (Maple Leaf Wrestling), Gama Singh (Stampede) and Giant Singh (All Pro Wrestling) find success after training abroad but new promotions in India itself do not tend to enjoy much longevity, most fans only being familiar with African (World Wrestling Professionals), Japanese (New Japan) or most commonly USA (WWE or TNA) companies and only experiencing pro wrestling live when one of them comes over.
- The commercialization of VHS tapes and cable television had weakened kayfabe and the territorial system by exposing plot holes and reducing the draw of world champions, since fans no longer had to wait to see them come to their region. Both kayfabe and the territories were on their way to bouncing back due to creative effort to counter these developments in the early 1980s but Vince McMahon Jr took advantage of this period of weakness to publicly break kayfabe in a bid to lower his operating costs and further weaken the territorial system.
- ECW made an effort not to do another barbed wire match after Sabu vs Terry Funk. To quote Paul Heyman, "Because no-one could top that! And in good conscience, we didn't want anyone to try."
- Depending on who you ask, WWE buying out the competition brought an end to the popularity of pro wrestling. A combination of the emergence of Mixed Martial Arts and the stagnation of WWE have both played a role in this. The loss of a series of star wrestlers (as in stars even non-wrestling fans knew) and other popular top-level talent over the course of the mid-2000s to injuries, retirement, death, firings, moves to other companies or to other careers also contributed to the decline. That said, pro wrestling is still ongoing and WWE remains quite popular, but it's widely accepted that wrestling will simply never again be as popular as it was during its peak in the mid-to-late '80s and WWE will never be as popular as it was at its peak in the mid to late 90s. That is to say, even as WWE experienced its greatest success, the industry around it had shrunken as a whole, with there being few national promotions left in the entire world, much less the United States.
- WWE can't take all the blame for itself, and neither can the sport of MMA. Things like WCW buying out the contracts of wrestlers it never intended to use just so other people couldn't use them, and the fact no one bothered to, say, file anti trust suits in the face of the WWF and Jim Crocket's antics also helped. The "Rock N Wrestling" Era also brought in a number of admittedly successful businessmen and Hollywood types who saw the money pro wrestling was making but really didn't understand how it worked, such as WCW's idea that Ric Flair couldn't draw and had to be turned into Spartacus. Pro Wrestling is an industry that had been growing through means of questionable legality since the founding of the NWA, then largely screwed itself and let in outsiders it used to adamantly keep out in the name of self protection who screwed it further.
- The foundation of the very first mixed martial arts company, Shooto, in 1985 was the beginning of the end for 'shoot style' wrestling promotions like the Universal Wrestling Federation in particular, as mixed martial arts was essentially "shoot style but better" to the general public. What few shoot style promotions survived either became hybrids that showcase MMA too like the Inoki Genome Federation or openly adopted the tropes of other pro wrestling styles like LLPW.
- While territorial wrestling promotions were already on life support for more than a decade by this time, the final deathblow was arguably the collapse of the Memphis-based USWA (United States Wrestling Association). USWA was one of the few territorial promotions to make a name for itself during the Pro Wrestling Boom of the 1980's, due to its emphasis on younger wrestlers looking to build up their resumes before joining one of the Big Two. Unfortunately, the rise of the Monday Night Wars combined with some horrible company mismanagement doomed the league to the point where, by late-1996, they were reduced to doing shows at a flea market in Memphis. Combined with the relatively poor quality of their matches and wrestling talent by this time (just watch this video of one of their final shows), the USWA finally folded in November of 1997. And the final nail was hit on the coffin of territorial wrestling.(unless you consider WWC the last of the territories, which itself saw a much slower decline for much different reasons)
- Although it had been petering out even before then (the last match of its type occurring in 2006), the adoption of the TV-PG rating by WWE in 2008 probably permanently killed off the "strip" matches (Evening Gown, Bra and Panties) that had been more or less standard fare for fans of the Divas for nearly a decade. The only similar match since then has been the 2012 Tuxedo Match between Santino Marella and Ricardo Rodriguez, and that was obviously played for humor, not sexual titillation. While a Diva might still have her underpants exposed from time to time for a quick laugh, there will not be any more overly hyped, blatant attempts at Fanservice, at least not in the foreseeable future. WWE does occasionally do costume themed matches (usually for the sake of a Christmas Episode) but the focus is usually primarily on wrestling - with Fanservice restricted to photoshoots on WWE.com.
- Wrestlicious killed off the stream of GLOW imitators. While POWW and WOW did decently enough, Wrestlicious's obviously Troubled Production caused it to not reach TV until two years after it had first been taped (and additional tapings had to be done as many of the original girls had signed to major companies since). A second season was announced but has been in Development Hell. With the success of promotions like SHIMMER, SHINE Wrestling and others offering healthy alternatives to WWE programming - and a renewed focus on the Divas in WWE themselves - not many people are interested in Camp wrestling any more. One could argue that WOW started the kill - as Wrestlicious had a predecessor called CRUSH. A pilot was taped and shipped around but never picked up. Wrestlicious was only funded by the lottery winnings of JV Rich.(Then again, WOW did surprise many naysayers with a comeback about a decade later, with two then regulars of SHINE winning its tag team title belts no less. It was nowhere near getting a national TV deal like GLOW before it or the international attention of contemporary SHINE, much less SHIMMER, but GLOW's brand of camp is not dying quietly).
- Paige put an end to the concept of a token non-girly Diva. When she entered NXT, her 'Anti-Diva' character was actually quite popular and she enjoyed great reactions. However not long afterwards on the main roster AJ Lee (who started off with a similar "hey guys, cheer for me because I'm not girly" image) enjoyed a massive push - becoming a Diva with a very interesting character. NXT also added Divas with fun characters like Emma, Bayley, Summer Rae and Sasha Banks. The success of Total Divas also helped flesh out the personalities of many main roster Divas. So that by the time Paige debuted on the main roster, her character was met with lukewarm popularity and crowd reactions gradually died down. Paige wasn't well received until her character was given more depth beyond "I'm not a girl, I'm just like you" - meaning there won't likely be any Divas trying to grab fans by claiming to be The Lad-ette any time soon. That said, former Tag Team partner Ivelisse got a huge pop when she stomped into Family Wrestling Entertainment and announced her hatred of divas.
- The television series Harry Enfield and Chums is credited with killing off an entire genre of radio presenting with its "Smashie and Nicey" sketches about two ageing Boomer music radio DJs with dated musical tastes constantly reeling off the same tired, cliched patter. In 1993-4, a new regime at The BBC's Radio 1 promptly sacked many older DJs who were considered to have been potential targets of the parody. Enfield and Paul Whitehouse themselves later said that they hadn't intended the parody so aggressively and were sad to think that it might have contributed to people losing their jobs.
- Bizet's Carmen was the genre killer of opera comique, blurring the traditional line between opera comique and opera until the former no longer existed as a distinct genre.
- Andrew Lloyd Webber's Aspects of Love is a curious case. While he spearheaded the big-budget, pop-operatic, spectacle-laden "megamusical" trend of The '80s, this show — his first since The Phantom of the Opera, his biggest hit — is not and was never meant to be one of those. It's a Soap Opera about Triang Relations, and with the sole possible exception of the circus near the end of the second act contains no major set pieces whatsoever. It's to Webber's ouevre what The Shawshank Redemption is to Stephen King's. Its 1990 New York production had all the hype of a megamusical though, and it did cost $8 million (a big budget at the time). When it closed in less than a year and lost its entire investment, The New York Times wondered if it was a bad sign for megamusicals. In retrospect, it was right, at least as far as Broadway was concerned; while Miss Saigon proved a huge international success later in 1991, it was the last megamusical to do so. Subsequent megamusicals are mostly limited to European and sometimes Asian runs — though the production values and budgets of such shows as The Lion King, Wicked, and especially Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark occasionally compare to those of the megamusicals.
- The onstage mauling of Roy Horn by a white tiger at Siegfried & Roy's Las Vegas show in 2003 effectively killed the use of wild animals in Stage Magician shows and circuses. It had already been falling out of favor since the '90s due to the rise of Cirque du Soleil (a purely human-focused, acrobatic circus) and protests by animal rights groups, but this incident marked the turning point. By the '10s, even the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus would announce plans to phase out their iconic elephants, a decision that, combined with other factors, killed it by 2017.
- Up through the 1980s, Las Vegas showrooms were dominated by Variety Shows in the mold of Paris' Folies Bergere, alternating beautiful, scantily-clad showgirl routines with a hodgepodge of variety acts that ranged from celebrity impersonators to comedians to acrobats to magicians, with little linking them together thematically. The rise of magicians Siegfried and Roy as Vegas headliners was a bad omen, but the real killer was Cirque du Soleil's Mystčre in 1993 — a circus as lavish, varied, and exciting as any variety show with a cohesive, if surreal, artistic vision holding it all together. The hodgepodge approach of older shows lost its luster quickly, Cirque brought even more spectacular productions to other Vegas showrooms in subsequent years, and the classic format died for good when Jubilee!, which opened in 1981, closed in 2016. Newer attempts at "Vegas-style" shows are really straightforward variety showcases — they might bring out showgirls for a few numbers, but as equals to the acts that once played second fiddle to them at best and as window dressing at worst.
- Back in the 18th century, ballet was a very popular form of court entertainment, particularly in France, where royalty codified it through such standards as the five positions of the arms and feet, around which the whole art form revolves, and it was also used as a measure of human strength, itself still true to an extent today. Then the French Revolution happened, and suddenly ballet found itself Deader Than Disco to the point where it was a common subject of mockery directed towards the excesses of the recently-deposed ruling class. Only in the Romantic period did ballet experience a Genre Relaunch, and only after the rise of pointework, spearheaded by the great Marie Camargo, and the creation of ballets with fantasy elements such as La Sylphide and Giselle.
- The Great Video Game Crash of 1983 is called that for a reason: Caused chiefly by an overabundance of competitors in a fledgeling market and competition from superior micro-computers,note it killed the home console market in the United States for about two years. Perhaps more importantly, it effectively wiped out North American game/console development, to the point where it took over two decades to fully regain the ground that had been lost to Japanese competitors. There wasn't a successful game console from an American company between the Atari 2600, which died around 1983, and the Microsoft Xbox, released in November of 2001, eighteen years later. That's how badly it crashed.
- When Nintendo debuted the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1985, they bundled it with a light gun and battery-operated robot peripheral primarily to disguise the fact that it actually was a video game console. It worked.
- In the UK, meanwhile, it didn't even make as much impact as two years. Brits started using eight bit microcomputers as the main way of playing home videogames in 1982, which would last until the late 80s/early 90s when consoles started taking off (with the Megadrive and SNES)
- After the roaring success of Super Mario 64 in 1996, the platformer genre tried hard to play follow-up and suddenly almost every platformer coming out had to be a collect-a-thon. Despite the trend resulting in some classics like Banjo-Kazooie and Spyro the Dragon, the genre quickly wore out its welcome on one simple fact—all of the imitators only copied the collection aspects of Mario 64 as opposed to the expressiveness of Mario's versatile moveset. But the straw that broke the camel's back is generally considered to be Rare's Donkey Kong 64, which took the collect-a-thon formula and cranked it Up to Eleven with not only 200 Golden Bananas to collect, but hours upon hours of backtracking to collect more items and ridiculously-specific moves (often only used for a single puzzle, whereas Mario's moves could be utilized whenever the player wanted if they could find a use for it) in order to get a full set of bananas for each individual character across every stage and get 100% Completion. Despite being a smash hit in sales, it managed to turn most people off of the already oversaturated genre. Many of the subgenre's pioneers proceeded to abandon it: the Spyro series eventually abandoned the collect-a-thon format in The Legend of Spyro and Skylanders revival. Jak & Daxter started off in this formula, but quickly turned into a third person shooter/platformer with little to no collecting from Jak 2 Renegade and on. And finally, the Mario series gradually phased out the exploration in favor of more linear designs and fully embraced the formula of the 2D games with 3D Land and 3D World. To date, the only holdouts of the Collect-A-Thon are Yooka-Laylee and A Hat In Time, which are both deliberate homages to those kind of platformers. However, Super Mario Odyssey aims to modernize the exploration-based platformer for a new generation, though time will tell if it succeeds.
- The Anthropomorphic Mascot with Attitude platformers started petering out after Bubsy and the Battletoads dipped their toes into the world of multimedia franchising and saw incredibly disastrous results. When Bubsy subsequently crashed into the Polygon Ceiling, the resulting backlash more or less exterminated every radical mascot that was not the Trope Namer Sonic.
- FreeSpace 2 destroyed the space shooter genre born of Elite and popularized by Wing Commander. It was not the fault of the game itself, which most critics consider the height of the genre and for which fans are still putting out new content both graphical and gameplay,note but rather, how poorly it performed commercially: its initial sales were so bad that the genre was assumed dead and further development was halted, which most attributed to Interplay's (lack of) marketing. Attempts were still made to revive the genre, such as 2000's Tachyon: The Fringe having Bruce Campbell for its main character and gameplay additions like lateral thrusters, which was also featured in 2001's Independence War 2, as well as games considered staples of the genre like Freelancer, the X-Series, or Oolite (in and of itself a Fan Remake of Elite), but for a long while the genre was never able to reach the levels of popularity it had seen while Elite or Wing Commander were still going strong.
Thankfully, the advent of Kickstarter and other crowdfunding websites has seemingly restarted the genre, with games like Chris Roberts' Star Citizen, Elite: Dangerous, and other games like Strike Suit Zero leading the charge.
- The unfortunate retail failure of Unreal Tournament III, backed up by many freeware first-person shooters, has led to the end of commercially released fast-paced deathmatch-centric shooters as the Unreal and Quake series, in place of team-based and/or "tactical" shooters like Call of Duty/Modern Warfare, the Battlefield series, and Left 4 Dead. Team Fortress 2 is one of the few "Quake-like" games released in recent years, and it came out in 2007. Due to the continued updates, TF2 could be seen as still being released.
- It could also be said for true tactical shooters in the vein of the older Rainbow Six and Ghost Recon games, the ones with planning and stealth as major elements where the slightest muckup led to the death of your squad, due to the line being blurred between the aforementioned team-based shooters and the "true" tactical ones taking on more actionized elements. Attempts to bring the genre back have had limited success at best; games like Takedown: Red Sabre, marketed as a return to the form of the original Rainbow Six and its ilk, have met with near-universal negative reactions, mostly due to bad gameplay. Rainbow Six Siege, a new entry in that series more in-line with the original trilogy, has been well-received.
- The only high-profile exception seems to be the Halo franchise which, while taking a few elements from Call of Duty, continues to be faithful to its roots. And even then, it's not completely immune when putting its online statistics next to those of its immediate predecessors.
- The insane amount of Capcom Sequel Stagnation for the Guitar Hero franchise did this to the Rhythm Game genre in North America and Europe. Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock and Rock Band 3, released in late 2010, sold less than 1.5 million units combined, and the competition (Power Gig, et al.) outright bombed. While these are respectable figures given that both games come with expensive peripherals, compare this to Guitar Hero III (15 million units sold) and the original Rock Band (6 million), both released in 2007, and you can start to see how oversaturation of the market (a possible reason why Harmonix decided to focus more on DLC than new titles every now and then, unlike Activision) has destroyed the genre's profitability. Following the commercial disappointments of the latest installments, MTV has sold Rock Band developer Harmonix for 50 dollars and Activision briefly pulled the plug on future Guitar Hero games, and other developers, having bled money from their endeavors, have gotten out of the market. Due to its different audience and "real guitar" street cred, Rocksmith seems to be the last man standing. It took five years after their "final" release (or two, considering that Rock Band DLC had still gone on until 2013) for the two main competitors to come back to the market for the eighth generation, via Rock Band 4 & Guitar Hero Live, the latter of which completely overhauled its guitar controller and outright abandoned the bass guitar & drums. Lukewarm sales, however, suggest that even for the creative strides these games took to distance themselves from their predecessors, it's still for nothing. Activision disliked how the new Hero game did on the market to the point that they sold the studio that developed the game to Ubisoft, the publisher of the aforementioned Rocksmith. Talk about ironic.
- Dance-based Rhythm Games still hold popularity however. The Just Dance series may have been instrumental in killing off the once mighty Guitar Hero and Rock Band games. They were a less-expensive alternative, since they didn't require extra peripherals to play (unless you count the non-Wii versions which required a motion control sensor, but it's still cheaper). Also, its casual appeal due to its use of both modern and classic pop songs, not just strictly rock, was part of the why it largely supplanted Guitar Hero and Rock Band as the go-to game for parties.
- The 4X Real-Time Strategy subgenre was killed off when Empire Earth screwed up with its third installment and Age of Empires went bust with Ensemble closing down. Note that Ensemble going bust was Executive Meddling by Microsoft, who shut them down after they cranked out nothing but successful games.
- Sins of a Solar Empire revived the genre a bit, but it's one of the few notable releases and it came out in 2008.
- The Tycoon genre died when RollerCoaster Tycoon title owner Frontier Developments was sued by Chris Sawyer, coupled off with many other famous companies which made such games going bust.
- The execrable World War II FPS Hour of Victory seems to have killed off WWII shooters (at the very least ones that follow the actual battles of the war as they went in reality, as Alternate History-type games like the Wolfenstein and Sniper Elite series are still going strong), with the only successful ones since including Call of Duty: World at War and Day of Infamy - both nearly a full decade apart from each other. However, it should be noted that the market had been absolutely saturated with WWII shooters for about a decade by then and the major franchises had shifted to a modern setting (World at War was itself the final WWII-based Call of Duty game, made mostly as a fall-back because Activision was convinced the modern-day jump wouldn't stick).
- Call of Duty can itself also be linked to the death of WWII shooters and the shift to modern/near-future settings, due to the extreme popularity of the Modern Warfare sub-series - nearly every shooter released since Call of Duty 4 has been, in effect, a Call of Duty 4 clone. And now even the Modern Warfare style MMS note craze seem to be dying down and moving towards 'near future'/sci-fi territory with Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare and Titanfall. Arguably, the combination of Medal of Honor Warfighter's failure, rising sentiment against the US military's involvement in the Middle East, deconstruction games such as Spec Ops: The Line, and a backlash from gamers towards obviously-derivative modern day shooters, has led to this shift in subject. And now the near-future movement of games are gaining some serious backlash with Call Of Duty Infinite Warfare, leading to the entry after that returning to World War II.
- The Point-and-Click genre in its inventory management form was practically killed off by the success of Myst, and was only recently revived via digital distribution as well as the serial format. The failure of the critically praised Grim Fandango in 1998 was seen as the final nail on the coffin for the genre, even though Escape from Monkey Island was released two years later – albeit with considerably less acclaim than prior Monkey Island games.
- An alternative theory as to what killed point-and-click adventure games is presented by this article on Old Man Murray - they committed suicide, in effect, by way of too many contrived and illogical puzzles that no rational human being could conceive the answer to on their own.
- Telltale Games reinvigorated the genre with episodic decision-and-story-focused adventure games like The Walking Dead and The Wolf Among Us, though at the cost of decreased production on traditional moon-logic style adventure games like Sam and Max.
- Resident Evil 4, while highly successful and acclaimed both in its time and now, has been blamed for killing, or at least hastening the demise of, the Survival Horror genre in the '00s. This is largely due to its status as the Franchise Original Sin for the Resident Evil series, introducing many shooter-esque gameplay elements that would take over later games in the series, which other survival horror series would copy until, by The New '10s, most "horror" games were pretty much action shooters with creepy-crawlies and gothic atmospheres. However, the seventh game as well as PT (albeit its full game being canned) seem to be making a movement of harkening back to the genre's roots.
- Though motion controls were always controversial, the Xbox 360's Kinect seems to have been the point where the majority of the gaming public turned against them. By all accounts, the Kinect itself was and is a fairly impressive piece of technology, and has found many awesome applications... but none of those applications were any good for gaming. From controls ranging between unresponsive and completely broken, to the massive pile of shovelware and dance games, the system became a punchline. On top of that, Xbox 360 fans had spent the past few years loudly proclaiming that the Wii's motion controls were garbage, giving the Kinect downright negative pull among the established fanbase. Just a few years later, while Nintendo was introducing the Wii U (which largely dropped motion controls in favor of an evolution of the DS and 3DS' touch-screen) and Sony's PlayStation Move became abandonware, Microsoft's reveal of the Xbox One requiring Kinect received such a serious backlash that they had to release a version of the system that came without it less than a year afterwards — and what's more, this became a celebrated moment (aside from how they announced itnote ) that's often credited with singlehandedly saving the Xbox One and giving it a fighting chance against the PlayStation 4. That would have been the end of motion controls, but the next year brought an unexpected savior as HTC and Valve unveiled the Vive virtual reality system, forever establishing motion controls as a fundamental staple of VR.
- As mentioned in the trope description, Street Fighter II codified so many tropes that most people don't even realize how utterly it killed off any Fighting Game, especially 2D ones, that didn't largely adhere to them. Game mechanics we take for granted nowadays such as being able to attack before completing a walk cycle, having all of your basic moves available from the outset, lack of stage obstacles or crowd interference, or even just being able to jump high into the air, weren't always standard features of fighting games. Today, it's considered noteworthy if a fighting game breaks just two or three of the rules that SFII placed down, such as Bloodstorm, Divekick, and ARMS.
- Relic's Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War and Company of Heroes shifted Real-Time Strategy games from traditional base building with focus on strategy, to focusing more on tactics with emphasis on unit survival and micromanaging. It's telling that even Command & Conquer, one of the progenitors of traditional base-building RTS games, ended with a tactics-based game in Command & Conquer 4: Tiberian Twilight rather than a strategy-based one.
- The day that Rise of the Robots was released is often cited as the moment when British gaming journalism died out. It was difficult before due to the massive oversaturation of video game magazines, which meant that they were all about hyping up the public for whatever game that would hit the store shelves even if it was So Bad, It's Horrible. When an actual so-bad-it's-horrible game, led by the major gaming studio Time Warner Interactive, hit the store shelves, all British magazines that could make a review the day it came out were giving it high scores (Computer and Video Games rated it even as high as 92%) to be able to review the game before any other magazine across the country could get their hands on it, resulting in the game selling massive amounts of copies due to critics being unable to say anything even remotely negative about the game as that would mean that they would receive their review copies at a later date (Amiga Power, who gave the game a 5%, only got the game days after its release, and didn't get a review out until the January '95 issue two months later). After most readers realized that most magazines they were reading were saying that they should buy horrible products, you can expect that most readers stopped caring about what they had to say, resulting in the demise of many of them.
- Pokémon, for various reasons has dominated the Mon genre so strongly it has made it very difficult for any other works in the genre to achieve mainstream popularity or sometimes even get made at all. Some, such as Digimon, are even assumed to be copying Pokémon by the mere name due to the public's lack of awareness that it's a genre that existed before Pokémon, not something pioneered by it.
- Averted with Yo-kai Watch, which has quickly become a massive competitor to the Pokémon games, both of them leading weekly sales charts for months after they come out and has created a comparably large multimedia and merchandising empire — in Japan. Outside of Japan, however, this is closer to a straight example where, while managing to avoid accusations and the resulting stigma of being a Pokémon ripoff, Yo-Kai Watch has failed to gain any popularity above a Cult Classic.
- According to Stan Sakai, the reason the animated series of Space Usagi was never greenlit was because of the flop of Bucky O'Hare and the Toad Wars, with which it shared a rabbit protagonist and sci-fi setting. Networks were apparently reluctant to touch any animals-in-space properties for years afterwards. The saddest part? Word of God of Bucky's publisher says that despite the show's ratings success, Bucky — and thus the genre — died simply because of a toy shipment screw-up leaving stores with more shelfwarmers than "wanted" figures; Bucky was Merchandise-Driven, therefore it was cancelled.
- According to this episode of The Big Picture, the Band Toon and other animated shows designed to promote certain celebrities (such as Muhammad Ali and Hulk Hogan) was killed off twice, first in The '80s by the rise of Merchandise-Driven cartoons that were more lucrative for marketers, and again at the Turn of the Millennium by the rise of Reality TV offering a less expensive, more direct way for celebrities to promote themselves on television.
- For that matter, the merch-driven "half-hour toy commercial" style of cartoon that reached its peak in the 80s was itself killed for over a decade by the Children's Television Act of 1990, which placed strong restrictions on the advertising content of shows aimed at children. It was only with the rise of cable television (which isn't covered by the law) in the Turn of the Millennium when shows designed to sell products to children became big again.
- The above two combined with the Yo Yogi! flop made NBC think that the whole concept of a Saturday Morning Cartoon block was not worth it, turning instead to a teen-based block anchored by Saved by the Bell and expanding Weekend Today. The main reason why the genre still exists on broadcast television is due to the above mentioned CTA requiring three hours of Edutainment a week, with some networks farming theirs out from programming on another network under its corporate umbrella, e.g. CBS getting theirs from Nick Jr.
- Father of the Pride killed off the potential for computer-animated shows for adults, which is now strictly seen as a format for family entertainment while the more "adult" fare is almost always 2D animation. It would be a while before Sausage Party would revive any ideas of CGI adult animation.
- The extreme unpopularity of Johnny Test has seemed to have killed off most mainstream attempts in the "kid uses super science and gadgets to deal with everyday life" genre of cartoons that started with shows like Dexter's Laboratory and The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius.