open/close all folders
- Batmite and Mxyzptlk usually just end up being sent back to their home dimensions in the end, since they are well-intentioned playful tricksters and not outright evil.
- The Micro-Puffs were specially created for The Powerpuff Girls comic book (never appearing on the TV series). They were essentially distaff Mxyzptlks for the girls.
Live Action Television
- In the various Star Trek series, the Romulans invoke this Trope in their foreign relations. They often don't try to outright start wars, but instead to provoke or more often trick the Federation into doing so. This lets them cling to the moral high ground as they battle. Naturally, the various Trek captains like Kirk and Picard know they're full of crap.
- Omnipresent and occasionally played with in Animaniacs:
- One episode had a nanny parodying The Sound of Music, who greatly annoys the Warner Brothers with her happy demeanor and niceness. The show then breaks the Fourth Wall by showing a kid asking his dad why they don't simply take care of her like they do most of their enemies. The dad answers that she hasn't actually done anything bad to them and genuinely means well. Eventually, the Warners called in a cameo appearance from Slappy Squirrel to deal with her.
- When they occasionally do pester someone who wasn't mean to them first, the character is previously established as a Jerk Ass (mocking his staff, withholding food, kicking nuns).
- Bugs Bunny was not like that originally, he was more of a Screwy Squirrel, but was turned into this later on.
- Director Friz Freleng created Yosemite Sam to directly upkeep the trope, and utilize a clearly belligerent villain Bugs could freely torment compared to Elmer Fudd, who Freleng feared was pitiful enough to make Bugs look like an unheroic bully.
- Similarly Dick Lundy invented Buzz Buzzard as a more callous foe for Woody Woodpecker, evolving the latter away from his unpunished Screwy Squirrel persona he had against non-provocative victims like Wally Walrus.
- Similarly Jerry of Tom and Jerry fell victim to this more and more in later Hanna-Barbera shorts. In shorts he was defensive and being antagonised by Tom, he usually won. The odd time he started a feud or went overboard in his retaliation, Tom was allowed to have the last laugh.
- There are elements of this in an episode of Kim Possible where Yori and the Sensei convince Ron to go back and help Monkeyfist because even though he's a bad guy, he hasn't meant them any harm this time round.
- Averted in early episodes of The Dreamstone, where the heroes always got a free pass for brutally beating or leaving for dead mundane Minions With An F In Evil, the Urpneys. Later seasons started to inflict the trope, the Urpneys were retooled from pitiful slaves to more Not So Harmless lazy employees, with the heroes rarely taking their retaliations outside the bare means of defensive (one episode their over zeal returned ended on a rather sour note). In a lot of the Urpneys particularly ineffectual schemes, the heroes were retooled into The Fools oblivious to their foes undoing their own schemes for them.
- Generally SpongeBob SquarePants can get away with creating all sorts of havoc (ranging from mild irritation to destroying lives) so long as it's in his well intentioned giddiness. On rare occasions Spongebob deliberately acts like an arrogant or mean spirited Jerkass however, he ends up the Butt Monkey instead.