Major Injury Underreaction
The Earl of Uxbridge:
By God, sir, I've lost my leg. The Duke of Wellington:
By God, sir, so you have.
In webcomics and cartoons especially, characters in great pain will demonstrate this pain by making frequently deadpan statements
, along the lines of "The truck lodged in my stomach is excruciating" or some such.
by the character being resistant to pain in some way
or a Badass
. In Real Life
, a person might not notice an injury right away due to adrenaline, shock, or panic, all of which can eclipse pain. This may be used to make a Mortal Wound Reveal
all the more shocking.
Contrast with Minor Injury Overreaction
, which is a direct inversion
of this trope. Compare Only a Flesh Wound
, I Ain't Got Time to Bleed
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- One "Got Milk?" commercial had a mother telling her kids to drink their milk when they refuse to. One of the kids tells her that their next door neighbor, who was outside working, never drinks milk. Then, when the neighbor attempts to lift up a wheelbarrow, his arms snap off from their sockets. While the mother and kids scream in horror, the old man simply replies "Oh, that's not good..."
- A whole campaign for Mike's Hard Lemonade revolved around these; one, for instance, had a guy impaled with rebar. It gets used as a bottle opener.
- Another advert had two guys working at an aquarium. However, one of the guys had one of his hands bitten off by a shark, while the other guy watches. The second guy asks about the incident and the first guy responds "Talking about your bad luck" in a calm matter.
- Yet another has a guy at the doctor, calmly discussing his life expectancy as a horrible alien parasite of some sort is visible on an X-ray (or something), gobbling down his internal organs.
Anime & Manga
- Played with in Higurashi no Naku Koro ni. When Shion tears off her own fingernails, she at reacts realistically to the first one. When told she has two more to go, she insists it doesn't hurt. When she misses the second nail and doesn't tear it off completely and is told she needs to do it over, she flips out and starts screaming and flailing. She's restrained with a blanket over her head and it's implied that the task is completed by force.
- In one of the answer arc episodes, after getting hit in the head by a chair, Keiichi and his friends don't seem to care, compared to their fear before he got hit in the head, especially considering that it was Shion doing the hitting, of all people. A very angry Shion.
- Corporal Oland from Pumpkin Scissors doesn't feel pain when under the influence of the the Blue Lantern, and is so used to coming out of it with horrific injuries that he barely even notices them anymore. For example, during the ballroom arc he gets hit in the head and shoulder with a sledgehammer, hit in the face and stomach with a mace, run over by horses, and thrown through a window. He barely even acknowledges most of these.
- Suzumiya Haruhi: Yuki Nagato's reaction to six sharp poles passing through her body: "I am fine". Shortly after, she turns her opponent into a pile of sand. Her opponent likewise has minimal reaction to this.
- In general, characters in Naruto don't seem to consider losing limbs anything other than a minor annoyance:
- Inverted by Hidan, who is relatively immortal and is extremely whiny about the pain caused by deadly injuries. Interestingly enough, it's often not the pain he should be complaining about, such as when he complains about Kakuzu picking up his head by the hair, whereupon Kakuzu notes that being decapitated should have hurt more.
- Taken to ridiculous levels at the start of the encounter. Hidan's only reaction to being impaled by two large swords is "Who the hell are you?"
- Deidara takes to an extreme, even knowing that he could probably get his limbs replaced by Kakuzu or use it as part of his plan. Gaara rips his arm off and he merely grins, Kakashi sends the other arm to an alternative dimension and he barely even acknowledges it. Nutter.
- Done in a completely badass way when the Raikage has his arm set on fire by Amaterasu and is forced to cut it off to keep the fire from spreading which happens without him even flinching and his next line is to tell his medic to quit gawking and stop the bleeding.
- And Kisame barely reacts at all to Killer Bee throwing a sword into his shoulder, apparently just because it would have gone even further in if Samehada hadn't eaten the chakra the blade was enhanced by. Likewise, his reaction shortly afterward to Killer Bee launching an attack so strong it smash through Samehada and blew open his chest was to calmly let his opponent know this surprised him before Samehada fused with him to heal his injuries. And his reaction to getting his head popped off was to compliment Raikage and Killerbee's speed.
- Shortly thereafter, Tobi did pretty much the same thing as the Raikage, except he didn't even stop: he just notice his arm was infected with microscopic poison insects, snapped it off at the shoulder with his one other hand, and then drop-kicked it at his opponent. This is probably because, as we later discover, he can regrow the thing. When fighting Konan the same arm gets destroyed again, and he just seems slightly annoyed.
- Shisui Uchiha was just a bit exhausted when Danzo ripped out his right eye. To top of that, Shisui then ripped off his remaining eye by himself and gave it in Itachi's care, so Danzo wouldn't get it. Shisui did that like it was nothing.
- Madara Uchiha gets swiss-cheesed by Shukaku, smacked around by the tailed beasts, dropped into corrosive slime, suffocated by a sand seal, and smashed by a collaborative tail-attack. He comes out with a lost arm, many bleeding holes, and several broken bones, yet is only exhausted and showing excitement over being able to fight as a living human again.
- It's not just with missing limbs, the Naruto characters in general seem to have an inhumanly high tolerance to getting thrown around like ragdolls. Even being pulled out of the air by the ankle and hulksmashed into the hard earth repeatedly did very little to stop Kakashi in episode 85.
- Speaking of Kakashi, he didn't seem to mind too much when Madara plucked his left eye from his socket. In fact, while Sakura clearly worried about it Kakashi seemed wholly unconcerned and more focused on what was happening around him. In real life, such injuries tend to lead to death from shock and blood loss if left untreated.
- In Katekyo Hitman Reborn!, Gokudera, while rushing over to the hospital to give Tsuna roses, got run over by cars a couple of times and is covered in blood. This didn't seem to deter him, and when told by Tsuna that he should go see a doctor, he replies that "this is nothing."
- In Axis Powers Hetalia, Lithuania gets all his fingers broken by his date, Belarus. He considers the date to be pretty good and goes to tell his friend Poland about it. While she's still doing it.
- In one comic, Russia's heart falls out of his chest. While the other nations are freaked out, not only is he unconcerned, but says that this happens on a semi-frequent basis.
- Hellsing often has Seras getting stabbed and wounded but barely reacting, 'cuz you know, she's a a vampire-hunting vampire and she's freaking cool. And let's not even talk about Alucard. Most grievous injuries will at best make him laugh. Sometimes, he'll pretend to be defeated, then suddenly regenerate and start killing the enemy much harder, taunting him to also up the ante. Sir Integra gets Shot in the eye by Major in OVA 10 and barely flinches.
- In Trigun, Knives had an odd reaction when Vash shoots him for the first time: instead of writhing in pain, he became totally distraught that his own brother would raise a gun against him.
- Mahou Sensei Negima!. When Negi gets his right arm chopped off in a fight, he just exclaims that he still has his left and continues to fight. Granted, a severed arm can be re-attached with only moderate difficulty in the Magic World, but he didn't know that!
- Fate Averruncus is completely unconcerned when Tsukuyomi cuts off one of his arms (basically for giggles). He actually uses the severed limb as a comedic prop via patting one of his minions on the head with it when she (rather understandably) freaks out, and seems more worried that he did the joke wrong than the fact that his arm is severed. Especially odd considering his earlier reaction to being punched in the face for the first time.
- While the setting in Angel Densetsu is pretty much realistic, and it was not a very deep wound, usually you do at least notice when you're being stabbed in the face!. Bloody-faced Kitano is even scarier than normal... if such a thing is possible.
- In the Fate/stay night anime, Shirou and Saber open the door to their house to see Tohsaka Rin beaten to a bloody pulp in the corner by Kotomine. She's smiling when they walk in. Admittedly, this is because they finally got here to help her, but the image is quite jarring. Shirou is an actual example; for instance, in the game's Unlimited Blade Works route, Shirou takes a spike to his hand defending Tohsaka, and his utter lack of reaction to having a hole in his hand (instead being more concerned about her condition) completely freaks Tohsaka out. It is around this point that she realizes that Shirou is a completely broken person, and begins to take measures to fix this deficiency.
- Another example, later in the same arc, is when Saber, under mind control, cleaves into his shoulder before cutting towards his neck, and his first thoughts are "That's.....not good".
- The best is in Heaven's Feel, with this direct quote:
Shirou: Man, I panicked too much. All I lost was my left arm.
- Rin from Mnemosyne does a preemptive snark: just before being sucked into a running airjet turbine, she utters with hysterical calm, "This... may be too much even for me..." Makes sense, since she doesn't exactly have anything to speak with afterwards. Of course, being an immortal helped her a lot, but she still felt every millimeter of her body being ripped into watery dust.
- Most people scream in agony when someone drives ballpoint pens through their hand and thighs. Durarara!!'s Shizuo Heiwajima, on the other hand, casually wonders if it would be better to patch the wounds up with band-aids or superglue.
- Taken Up to Eleven in a later episode where, after Horada shoots him, Shizuo casually strolls into Shinra's house drenched in his own blood.
Shinra: Oh my God! What happened to you?
Shizuo: Eh, you know. Got shot.
Shinra: Your leg and abdominal muscles have taken considerable damage. How are you even walking around like this!?
Shizuo: Why? ...'Cause I can.
- In Hunter ◊ Hunter, Hisoka's response to getting his arm ripped off in a tournament fight is to, grin, take a bite out of it, and wave it around for a while with his other arm while mocking his opponent. He then fakes reattaching it to mess with the guy's mind, plays with him until he breaks, and then leaves and calls in a specialist to sew it back on with microscopic energy stitches. Then he has a shower scene.
- Chad took a steel girder to the shoulders and a head-on collision with a motorcycle without even the slightest complaint (the cyclist was hurt more than he was) before he even developed his powers.
- Also, Ishida is surprisingly calm after losing use of his left hand (cut off in the manga, badly broken and burned in the anime), especially considering he needs two hands to operate his main weapon. He later feels well enough after being impaled to (albeit gently) snark at Ichigo.
- Orihime too. In her introductory arc she gets hit by a car (one too many times, according to her) yet she laughs it off, claiming that the driver didn't mean to hurt her on purpose.
- Then there's Kenpachi. Stabbed with twelve blades at the same time.◊ His response?
"Is that all? I'm disappointed."
- The main character of Bludgeoning Angel Dokuro-chan says something like "I wish you'd stop doing that!" every time his head is ripped off... and immediately resurrected. An even more outrageous reaction we get at one point is, while his head has been ripped in half, his mouth remaining, and the stump is spewing blood in a geyser-like fashion, he /thanks/ Dokuro for saving him from the other angel trying to kill him.
- In chapter 15 of Franken Fran, Fran is nearly decapitated. Her reaction is to croak out "Begin... oper...ation" and sew her head back on. By the time her sister/bodyguard Veronica shows up, Fran is more worried about the woman who hired the guy to kill her because she's afraid an experimental medical treatment might not work properly. Justified in that Fran's an Artificial Human, it's not even a given that she feels pain and having backup systems in case of decapitation is not out of the question, so her lack of reaction makes sense.
- In episode 4 of Uragiri wa Boku no Namae wo Shitteiru Zess's response to getting stabbed in the chest with a BFS and bleeding all over the ground is to smile softly at Yuki and say "I'm fine."
- And in episode 13, Takashiro's response to getting four ice spears stabbed into his back is to wince and tell Yuki "I'm fine." (Turns out he has a Healing Factor).
- In Muhyo And Roji, Vector, a powerful half-ghast, barely survives getting crushed by the Hands of Hades, which results in him bloodied and having Blood from the Mouth. He remarks that he's glad the rest of the Magical Law practitioners he's up against aren't as powerful as Muhyo.
- Legend of Galactic Heroes gives us this. If you haven't noticed yet, Reuenthal is kind of badass.
- Avoided in Blood+. Several Chevaliers avoid any major reactions (screaming in pain, etc) when they undergo injuries. These injuries include having arms sliced off and giant holes ripped through their stomach. However, many of these aren't major injuries in the first place as they heal extremely quickly.
- Claymore: Lose an arm? Don't worry: Claymores will look shocked for a moment and continue fighting. If they're offensive, they can easily reattach the limb, or even better, if they're a defensive type, they'll just regenerate the limb later. Legs are a different deal entirely - because they won't be able to escape without them! Also when they lose both arms, so now they can't hold their sword or reattach their other arm. The realization hits them at that point.
- Perhaps best exemplified by Roxanne's reaction to Awakened Cassandra biting off and eating her left arm: "Oh?" Her facial expression at that moment amounts to what one usually has upon someone calling out to you by name.
- In Fullmetal Alchemist most of the Homunculi embody this trope. Being practically invincible they don't have to worry about things that would kill any normal human. The exception seems to be Envy, who reacts quite realistically to having his eyeballs boiled and blown apart multiple times, and Lust, who seems to be reacting rather realistically to being burned over and over, albeit as long as she's actually on fire. Once she heals, she seems to stop feeling the pain.
- Also Lan Fan for when her arm is cut off she cares nothing of hers own safety. Further reinforced by the fact she was the one who cut her own arm off without a second thought.
- Major Armstrong gets into a bit of this as well, while fighting Sloth; Sloth dislocates his shoulder. His response? He lets Sloth continue to hit him there until Sloth knocks it back into place.
- In Haou Airen, Hakuron is shot to death. His reaction is to calmly go towards the church where he was supposed to get married. There, he spends his last moments next to his weeping bride Kurumi, comforting her about the fact that they won't spend the rest of their life together.
- Thanks to their super pain-nullifying pills, the baddies in Sword of the Stranger do this several times, often getting shot by multiple arrows and just continuing to fight or casually chat about something else. In one scene, a man's arm gets lopped off; he hardly notices, and seems more upset that he didn't get to finish firing his gun.
- Ai no Kusabi has Iason Mink who doesn't even wince when his legs are cut off just above the knees.
- Justified. Iason is a member of a race of "engineered" men, and, among other things, it isn't exactly a given whether they feel physical pain at all.
- Also Riki who is rather calm and even understanding when he wakes up to find out he got an impromptu penectomy.
- In episode 20 of Mirai Nikki, Uryuu Minene gets her hand blown off. Her reaction? "My hand..." Spoken in a whispered voice, with only a slight wince.
- Muteki Kanban Musume: Kankuro hits the ball Miki was pitching himÖ with his arm. It breaks:
- Medaka Box breathes this trope in regards to its often absurd and unorthodox "fight" scenes. Characters will sometimes make it a point to state that they are suffering from several severe injuries (and often with abnormal specificity), but will typically continue fighting at full force, throwing punches with shattered fists and taking hits in disintegrated shoulders, then hop on a gurney and into an ambulance with a reaction that boils down to "I'm gonna go get patched up now" once all the fighting is over.
- In JoJo's Bizarre Adventure Part 1, Dio Brando pretty much ignores the fact that he's been vertically sliced in half for nearly a whole chapter. Once he gets the opportunity to patch himself up, he expresses some annoyance at getting himself to line up again.
- In Love Hina, whenever Keitaro's mentor Seta crashes his van (which is quite often), he emerges from the wreckage cheerfully oblivious to whatever gruesome Amusing Injuries he's suffered.
- In Gamaran, a member of the Muhou Ryu's 47th Division punches a stone boulder so hard that his whole hand turns into a pathetic, broken waste. He reacts with a dull "Uh... Broken...". Justified as, like all the members of the 47th, he uses a deadly drug that prevent him from feeling pain at all.
- Early in Space Adventure Cobra, Cobra gets impaled on his chest by a sword. He nervously acknowledges his luck that it isn't fatal, but not before turning to his enemy like nothing happened to mock and immediately kill him. The other two times he's seen being Impaled with Extreme Prejudice, however, do knock him out a little more.
- In Soul Eater, Chrona does this at times. Chrona's reaction to a surprise scythe to the gut is, "Where did that come from?"
- Reiner Braun, from Attack on Titan, does this on multiple occasions. The first time, a smaller Titan chomps on his arm and breaks it. He throws it over his shoulder in a fireman's carry and helps chuck it out the window. Hours later, after revealing himself to be The Mole, he's brutally attacked by Mikasa and ends up with one arm missing and the other badly mangled. He still manages to get back up and fight, which is justified since he's noted to be tough as an ox and has a Healing Factor.
- Levi, humanity's legendary strongest soldier, breaks his ankle during a mission. His response is to wince slightly and keep going.
- Erwin Smith proves just why he's in charge of the Survey Corps, when a Titan bites into his arm and starts carrying him off. He continues shouting orders without pause, because he doesn't have time to react to his injuries. He shows up a short time later with his arm completely severed from just below the bicep and saves the day.
- In episode 5 of The Devil is a Part-Timer!, Ashiya is shot by Lucifer with a magical beam, and has a rather large hole in his chest. In his dying moments, he tells his friend Maou different ways to save money. He actually managed to recover later.
- A Running Gag in early Ranma Ĺ was Kuno would suffer massive damage and only respond with a deadpan "That hurt, you know."
- Also, Ranma once got his neck sprained by Akane after he again angers her enough to get beaten up by her. He jogs to Dr. Tofu's clinic with his head still bent, even talking as he goes get fixed.
- In Dragon Ball Z, Goku accidentally injured his wife Chi-Chi by attempting to give her a reassuring pat on the back, only to send her flying through a wall, a tree, and half a boulder. Normally Goku does know his own strength so such accidents don't happen, but he forgot that he was in Super Saiyan form at the time. Chi-Chi doesn't even scream in pain or go to the hospital. However, in the next scene, she's seen with a few bandages and her arm in her sling.
- Calvin and Hobbes did a parody of Dark Age comic books, in which a character having a huge hole blasted through his torso says: "I could feel my spine shatter. It hurt... a lot."
- Thanos' reaction as he sees his own heart being torn out by Drax the Destroyer ?
Thanos : Interesting...
- In the horrendous comic Silent Hill: Dying Inside, Christabella is shot in the eye, but is only angry because the blast set her hair on fire. She also says that she doesn't mind the giant gash in her stomach, just the flies that constantly get on her and when dogs try to eat out of it in her sleep.
- In his MAX series, The Punisher once lost - didn't break, lost - a rib to a shotgun blast. Didn't slow him down.
Frank's monologue: That's a rib gone. Not broken. Gone. [keeps fighting]
- Not so much an injury as a change, but when Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America (Bucky) are turned into frogs in one comic, Thor (to whom this has happened before) is annoyed, Iron Man freaks out, and Bucky, the least-experienced of the three, has no real reaction to it at all (his first comment is to tell Tony to relax).
- Stuka in Sin City. Got an arrow right through his body and seems entirely unconcerned, even though he states that "it's really starting to hurt".
- All of his friends seem unconcerned as well. They calmly read the note attached to the arrow, then file out of the room to look for the archer, leaving Stuka standing there, confused.
"I don't know, guys. Maybe I should see a doctor or something. I don't think this is the kind of thing you can just ignore."
- The eponymous character of Johnny the Homicidal Maniac is perfectly fine when his 'spine explodes.'
- Defused Tyke Bomb Cassandra Cain was prone to this. It was explained in her backstory.
Tim Drake: How can you take a bullet and not bat an eye?
Cassandra Cain: You know that... kid game, "Two for Flinching?"
Tim Drake: Yeah. Oh, no. Don't tell me.
- Played for laughs in a one panel comic in an early issue of Toy Fare Magazine. The comic depicted action figures of Cloud and Vincent from Final Fantasy VII pulling the arms off a Sephiroth figure. Sephiroth's response is simply "Y'know, once this sensory overload isn't overwhelming my capacity to feel pain, I'm gonna be screaming like a girl."
- When Jack Russell a.k.a. Werewolf by Night is run through with several silver katanas in Punisher vol. 7 #13, he tells his attackers: "Acupuncture. Tickles."
- Deadpool, upon being impaled by an elephant tusk: "Gross, my body's never gone 'sploorp' before."
- Deff Skwadron: Quoth Killboy: "Beg pardon, sir, but you couldn't 'elp me with the take-off? Lost one of me arms in the crash again, an' I'm 'avin trouble usin' all the controls..."
- In the Birds of Prey story arc where they go up against the Secret Six, Scandal Savage takes a .45 caliber bullet to the back from near point blank range and spends a few pages apparently bleeding to death in the snow before rejoining the fight. Afterwards, when she's being helped into the back of their transport, she makes a muttered comment about how she hates regrowing organs. Plays with the Healing Factor tropes as well.
- Transformers: Robots in Disguise: Shockwave blows a hole in Dreadwing at the start of issue 17, killing him. At the end of the issue Dreadwing comes back to life through the use of Shockwave's experiments. His reaction is a small "ow," asking for some warning next time, and then wondering what they're going to do next as the hole in his chest closes up.
- Transformers Dark Cybertron: Galvatron tears Megatron in two. Megatron proceeds to shoot him and orders Bumblebee to take him away, and bring his legs. He refers to the injury as a scratch and says he's had worse. If one's read The Transformers IDW they'd find this isn't an exaggeration; he has had worse, having been sliced shoulder to crotch (missing his spark, and thus a fatal blow, by inches) and one time being consumed by living explosions.
- One yakuza member in Kyon Big Damn Hero was terrified about how little desire for retribution Kyon possessed after being shot. Justified because he had been healed afterwards and only one of the bullets actually got through, after the skinsuit inside his Yuki-altered wristwatch activated reducing damage.
- In Halo: Halos in Space, Joe Chief leaps at the Spines Alien and gets pierced by the spines, but breaks them off in the process. Both respond with an "Ow."
- In the Homestuck bloodswap AU fan fic Red Dead Virgo, Kanaya is more concerned with her rapid blood loss leaving an easy trail to follow and worrying her friend Vriska, than the fact that she is losing so much blood that it causes her to pass out.
- Ichigo in To Prey Upon the Dead get his arm broken during a spar with Tatsuki. He mutely snaps the bone back into place to heal. Justified however in that he's Covered with Scars and only one of them (his pinky and part of his left hand were melted off by a Xenomorphs acid) isn't from training or sparring sessions.
- Note: one of his spars against "Mother Masa" ended with him impaled.
- Fire Emblem Rekka No Ken: A Story Retold: In chapter 2, Lyn gets bashed over the head with the flat of an axe, but simply shrugs it off to save Michael from another bandit, completely failing to notice her head wound until Michael inspects the back of her head and sees that her hair is covered in blood; Lyn promptly takes a sip of a vulnerary, and it's only when the wound closes that she feels the pain.
Lyn: Oh yes, I was hurt!
Films — Animation
- In the first Shrek, after Fiona fights off Robin and his Merry Men, both she and Shrek are surprised to discover he'd sustained an injury. Justified in that Shrek's thick skin wouldn't necessarily feel the arrow going in.
Fiona: There's an arrow in your butt!!
Shrek: (looks at butt) Oh, would you look at that.
- Olaf the Snowlem from Frozen gets a lot of these. His reaction to accidentally walking into a needle-sharp icicle sticking out of a wall is a nonchalant "Oh, look at that. I've been impaled."
- In South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut, this is Invoked in one of the songs, "La Resistance":
And though it hurts you'll laugh, and dance a dickless jig!"
Films — Live Action
- Avatar: Grace looks down at her blood-drenched hands and the bleeding wound in her side. Voice deadpan, she says "This is gonna ruin my whole day." Quaritch also only deigns to acknowledge that his shoulder is on fire once his walker is deployed.
- A bit of a dark Running Gag in Chopper is for the title character to do this. He expresses only annoyance when his ears are being hacked off as part if a prison ploy. When he's being shanked multiple times by his former friend, Chopper's only reaction is to talk about how hurt his feelings are that his friend is betraying him.
- Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
- The Black Knight. He has all his limbs cut off one by one and the reaction each time is to deny that it would keep him from fighting.
- As well as Lancelot's squire Concord, whom upon being tragically, fatally wounded by an arrow bearing a note, calls out "Message for you, sir!"
- In Monty Pythons The Meaning Of Life, a British officer based in Africa takes a very blase attitude about losing a leg to a tiger. However, part of that might come from the fact that he seems to believe that his leg will grow back.
- Red from Pineapple Express sustains injuries that should, by all logic, kill him and only agrees to go to a hospital after breakfast, which may be several hours after the climactic fight. Though, he was stoned out of his mind so he didn't feel it.
- In Zombieland, Bill Murray reacts to the buckshot to the chest in an "oh, this is unfortunate" sort of tone and goes out pretty calmly. Being high as a kite might've had something to do with his nonchalance.
- In the narmful classic Death Bed: The Bed That Eats, one of the protagonists gets all the flesh melted off his hands when he foolishly tries to pull a victim out of the Death Bed. Instead of showing any sign of pain at all, he just stares at his skeletal hands in Dull Surprise for a long time and offhandedly remarking how the way the bones detach from the ligaments means the tissue's died. Gee, you think?
- Another character remarks on being eaten alive in the same tone most people would note their shoe is untied.
- One of the police officers in Mystic River recounts a story about a guy who walked into the emergency room with a knife sticking out of his shoulder and asked the nurse where the Coke machine was.
- In The Hangover: Part 2 Teddy is more curious than concerned about his missing finger. What makes it worse is that he's a talented musician and training to be a surgeon, two professions that generally require skillful hands with all fingers intact. Not only has he irretrievably lost a digit - and could possibly have any number of infections from the wound - but his career is pretty much down the drain.
- In Rubber, Lieutenant Chad asks to be shot in the chest twice and does not react at all. In fact, he doesn't seem to be actually injured at all. He does it to demonstrate to his fellow officers that they are all fictional characters in a film.
- The shock/panic variant of this trope occurs in Saving Private Ryan, in which Sgt. Horvath says "Just got the wind knocked out of me" after being shot several times and mortally wounded, and a GI in shock on Omaha Beach picks up the arm that just got torn off his shoulder and walks away.
- Mickey Blue Eyes provides a subversion. Frank is aiming a gun at Michael, and the latter asks if this is going to hurt. Frank says, "Not a bit." BANG BANG! Two red spots appear on Michael's chest, while he calmly says that it actually did hurt quite a lot. The subversion? They were practicing for a fake assassination. The gun was loaded with blanks, and the bullet holes were fakes rigged by a mechanism Michael was carrying.
- In Jason X, a teen gets his arm chopped off, has his wound sealed temporarily, and then is brought back to the medical bay to have the limb reattached. Granted, he's a bit of a stoner, and it's far enough in the future that painkillers are probably excellent, but seeing him carry his own arm back with him (and crack jokes about it while doing so) is definitely this trope.
- The shop teacher in UHF cuts off his thumb while demonstrating a table saw. His reaction, as (fake) blood sprays all over George: "Would you look at that? Just call me 'Mr. Butterfingers'. I think it's on the floor somewhere. Is my face red!"
- In Spider-Man, the Green Goblin, played by Willem Dafoe, spends much of the film chewing as much scenery as he can. At the end, when he is about to be impaled by his own glider, his only reaction is a soft "Oh".
- In Johnny Dangerously, a gangster gets shot, but his only reaction is to note that he's got a hole in his suit. Soon after, he keels over from smoking. Don't smoke, kids!
- Tony Stark in the first Iron Man movie is remarkably calm when he tells Pepper that she's just caused him to go into cardiac arrest.
- Iron Man 2: Played with when Tony's palladium poisoning is clearly causing him discomfort, but he chooses not to tell anybody about it, instead making subtler preparations for his death such as appointing Pepper CEO and letting Rhodey take the Mk II. Of course, Tony was going to make Pepper an omelet and tell her, but he never got a chance.
- In The Fellowship of the Ring, Boromir merely grunts, drops to his knees, then gets right back up and keeps fighting after being shot with an arrow. It's not until the third that he stays down, and even then he's more concerned about failing the Fellowship than the fact that he has three arrows sticking out of his chest.
- In The Hobbit, upon having his belly slashed open, the Great Goblin remarks, "That'll do it."
- In Waterloo, toward the end of the battle the British general Wellington and his Number Two Uxbridge seem to survive a near miss from a cannon shot intact, when suddenly Uxbridge looks down...
Uxbridge: (calmly) My God sir, I've lost my leg.
Wellington: My God sir, so you have.
- During Night at the Museum, Teddy Roosevelt gets cut in half by a wagon wheel. His response goes along the lines of "Well, that's problematic." Justified, as he is a wax replica.
- In Wrongfully Accused, Hibbing Goodhue is shot several times by an assailant. His response: "Ouch." He then tries to get a Band-Aid while he continues to be shot. His final words are "Have you quite finished?"
- Elysium: Carlyle, though possibly justified as he was shot in the heart, and probably immediately went into shock.
- Dr. Ferreiro from Pans Labyrinth, when he is shot in the back by Captain Vidal he doesn't even flinch and continues walking.
- Though it doesn't involve actually injuring, the reaction of our hero and heroine in Attack Of The Puppet People to being shrunk, put into suspended animation and only being let out for the toymaker's amusement, as well as almost getting killed by the puppet maker in a murder-suicide due to the cops getting suspicious... Tell him to move out from in front of the door (which he does) and storm out of the room like he had insulted them.
- In Dirty Work, Mitch (Norm MacDonald) has this reaction to being raped in prison:
You fellas have a lot of growing up to do, I'll tell you that. Ridiculous. Completely ridiculous. Can you believe these characters? Way out of line. Way out of line. Have a good mind to go to the warden about this. You know what hurts the most is the... the lack of respect. You know? That's what hurts the most. Except for the... Except for the other thing. That hurts the most. But the lack of respect hurts the second most.
- In Pulp Fiction, immediately after a rape:
Naw, man. I'm pretty fuckin' far from okay.
- In The Matrix Revolutions Trinity is run through with a huge piece of rebar. There's little to no blood, she doesn't even cough or moan, just gives a quite but loooooong parting speech before finally dying. Neo is also commendably indifferent to the fact that his eyes have been burnt out.
- The Pink Panther: Whenever Chief Inspector Dreyfus suffers his accidental Amusing Injuries, such as stabbing himself with a letter opener or shooting his nose off, he gives surprisingly subdued reactions.
- And, of course, the classic old joke:
Two young subalterns are sitting in the officers' mess, talking about what wonderful chaps their troops are, how brave and hard-working and loyal to Queen and Country. And sitting nearby, the grumpy old colonel looks up and tells them: "Nonsense. You young whipper-snappers don't know quality. Why, I remember when I was at Poona in '76, after a battle I found one of my men pinned to a tree. One of the enemy horsemen had driven his lance clean through the fellow's belly. He was still alive, poor fellow."
"Good God, man," I said to him, "does that hurt?"
"Only when I laugh, sir."
- Ardal O'Hanlon does a bit about how people are not as tough as they used to be and older folks have a higher tolerance for discomfort even when terminally ill.
"How have you been?"
"Oh, not bad."
"What about the terrible searing pain?"
"Well, it helps to pass the time."
- In Redliners, David Drake has a character mention that a bad sunburn can cause more pain than some combat injuries. Doubtless due to the sunburn being restricted to nerve-rich skin.
- In Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor, X-wing pilot Hobbie Klivian, disabled in combat, has a shot fired through his cockpit that takes off his hand. He sighs, the narration says that it's been quite some time since he had a real left arm, and sticks the sparking stump into the new hole in the ceiling so that his pilot's suit will seal off the hole. Then he sticks his right foot into the new hole in the floor, and although his boot gets sucked off this gets sealed too. At some point he collides with something and thinks that his foot may have just been sheared off, but that's okay. It's been a long time since he's had a real right foot.
- In Darklighter, Hobbie is utterly nonchalant◊ about losing his entire left arm and needing an Artificial Arm. In the same issue he ejects only to have a passing TIE fighter swipe off his leg. His reaction?◊
"I lost — I don't believe this! — My right shin and foot got clipped off! My suit's self-sealer worked... the wound's frozen already
. No bleeding, minimal pressure loss. But it's starting to hurt."
- K.J Parker's The Scavenger Trilogy: several characters maintain cool, sophisticated conversations after traumatic injury.
- In Angelfall, after a few days, the amputation of his wings doesn't seem to bother Raffe much, as least physically.
- In the fourth book of A Series of Unfortunate Events, the character Phil gets his leg crushed. He reacts to this with, "Well, this isn't too bad. My left leg is broken, but at least I'm right-legged." Somebody comments, "Gee, I thought he'd say something more along the lines of 'Aaaaah! My leg! My leg!'
- Codex Alera: Aquitainus Attis matter-of-factly describing his mortal injuries to Amara and Ehren in excruciating, even slightly snarky, detail. Justified here by magic: Metalcrafters have the ability to suppress their own feelings, including pain.
- In The Dresden Files novel White Night, Ramirez looks down and says, "There's a knife in my leg", then "There's a knife in my gut", then "Holy crap, they match". Justified, because he's in shock.
- Later on, in Cold Days Mac gets shot in the stomach. He just looks mildly perturbed for a Beat, then seems to remember this should incapacitate him and drops to a knee.
- Which could be foreshadowing, depending on what WMG one subscribes to regarding Mac's identity.
- There's a double instance also in Cold Days. Thomas, Harry and Butters talk for several pages after a fight, while Butters stitches up Harry's wounds. Harry doesn't even notice having a three-inch gash in his ribs stitched up without anesthetic, a side effect of the Winter Knight mantle. After finishing, Butters finally notices Thomas had been walking around and talking for close to an hour with a gunshot wound in his torso.
Butters: You've been shot!
Thomas: Well. A little.
- Dave Barry's Guide to Guys: "Guys always say it's 'just a sprain,' because this way they can avoid falling into the clutches of medical care. A guy could have one major limb lying on the ground a full ten feet from the rest of his body, and he'd claim it was 'just a sprain.'" To illustrate this point, Dave Barry offers an anecdote about a guy who broke his ankle while on a fishing trip with some other guys, and neither he nor they noticed the seriousness of his injury until the next day, when his wife observed that one of his legs had become so swollen he could hardly walk.
- The second of Jenő Rejtő's Dirty Fred books starts with the Jimmy, the main character, looking for his knife, and finding it in the back of the guy he was asking. The guy insists on keeping it there, or replacing it with a bigger one to prevent any bleeding, until he gets medical attention. He got better.
- In His Dark Materials, Will Perry's first reaction to seeing his severed fingers on the ground is to note their resemblance to a bloody quotation mark and laugh.
- The Fire Swamp scene in The Princess Bride is much darker in the book. After being attacked by a trio of R.O.U.S.es, Westley begins packing mud onto his wounds, lest more of the creatures smell the blood and come after them. He screams at Buttercup (to pull her out of her shocked stupor) to help him. As they continue their journey, she asks about his wounds.
Westley: "I'm in something close to agony, but we can talk about it later."
- Somewhat subverted with Arthur Dent in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, where upon activation of the Infinite Improbability Drive, causes him to lose an arm and overreact... because he wouldn't be able to operate his digital watch. (The old kind, with red LEDs which only light up when you press a button.)
That's all right, I've got them back now...granted, they're longer than I usually like them, but...
- This image◊ from the 1965 dinosaur book Dinosaurs of the Earth. The dinosaur blog Love in the Time of Chasmosaurs dryly comments:
....although [Monoclonius] looks rather unconcerned about the whole thing, just standing idly by while T. rex takes a nibble.
- In Lolita, pedophile Quilty is shot several times but continues to speak to his killer politely while dying.
- In A Song of Ice and Fire, the Greatjon insults Robb Stark and has two of his fingers bitten off by Robb's direwolf. Defeated, the Greatjon grips his bleeding hand, makes a wisecrack and laughs it off. Bran, who watches the whole thing, is flabbergasted.
- In the Discworld novel Men at Arms , Detritus is injured. The fact that he's injured at all is remarkable, as he's made of stone. When asked if it's normal for his cracks to be oozing a thick liquid, his only reaction is "Dunno, sir. Never oozed before."
- Later followed up with 'Ain't got time to ooze.'
- From the same novel, Vetinari trying to dismiss the gunshot that's just shattered his thigh with "No need, it's just a flesh wound."
- In The Wheel of Time Rand's reaction to having one of his hands burned off is remarkably casual, which the other characters find very disturbing.
- Talmanes indulges in some Gallows Humor in the last book of the series after he gets stabbed by a Myrddraal's blade, which is always fatal. He gets better, thanks to timely Aes Sedai intervention.
Talmanes: Oh, that? I'm dying, unfortunately. Terribly tragic. You wouldn't happen to have any brandy, would you?
- In the third book of The Seventh Tower, Milla stabs Shadowmaster Sushin through the chest with her sword. His response? He laughs it off, yanks the sword out, and proceeds to go about his business for the rest of the series ignoring the hole in his chest (greatly unsettling his minions, who do their best not to stare). Justified; he was possessed by Sharrakor at the time. Milla didn't actually injure the intangible Sharrakor, and he could make Sushin's body continue to function no matter how beat up it got, so why should he have made a big deal about it?
- Drake from Gone might as well be the poster boy for this trope. We see signs of it in book 1 when he gets his arm cuts off, and the only real result is his Combat Tentacles. But it doesn't really show up until Plague when he leers while pulling a knife out of himself and shows no sign of pain while being literally cut to bits. It was pretty creepy.
- In The Outsiders, Ponyboy takes part in the huge greaser/Soc fight and then hitchhikes to the hospital to see his dying friend. On the way, the driver comments that Ponyboy is bleeding all over the car's seat. Ponyboy, who hadn't even noticed the injury, looks at the blood and dully apologizes.
Live Action TV
- There is a particularly harsh example in the German Crime Series Polizeiruf 110, where a bomb explosion in a crowded Munich pedestrian underpass throws a brick against the back of the head of a young woman. In the minutes following the detonation, she stumbles around among the dead and dying, nonchalantly looking for her purse. A few minutes later, she is dead herself.
- In one episode of Scrubs, Jordan gets her face Botoxed so much that she isn't able to make facial expressions. At one point, another character accidentally hurts her and she says with a straight face (and a fairly monotonous voice): "I think you separated my shoulder. The pain is excruciating."
- Similarly, when Cox tests this by asking her to show him "funny, sad, etc". When he asks for angry, she kicks him in the nuts and he remarks "you got angry down" as he falls.
- There was also a brief sequence in an earlier episode in which a Japanese chef with a butcher's knife embedded in his shoulder flatly replies to the obvious question: "Does what hurt?" This is part of a series of examples of how different people deal with pain differently, another example given was a husband standing next to his wife who is in labor when he happens to bite his lip and exclaim "Nothing has ever hurt this much!"
- The first appearance of Ben has him act non-chalant despite having accidentally nailed his hand to a plank of wood. In fact, it's actually J.D. who faints at the sight of it. Dr. Cox mentions doping Ben up with drugs so he wouldn't feel it, but he's still fairly blase about the whole thing, at one point even telling JD to lick the tip of the nail.
- In one fantasy sequence, Janitor cuts off J.D.'s arm with a circular saw. As blood comically squirts from the wound he simply replies "Aw, man... Give it back" while Janitor slaps him in the face with his own hand asking him "Only after you tell me why you're hitting yourself"
- Jack O'Neill, Stargate SG-1. The episode where Carter and O'Neill discover the second Gate. When Carter sets O'Neill's broken leg, he groans, "Jagged bone grinding into nerves hurts. Who knew?"
- From Red Dwarf:
Lister: Kryten! Are you OK?
Kryten: I have a medium-sized fire axe buried in my spinal column. This sort of thing can really put a crimp on your day.
- A dramatic example comes from Battlestar Galactica episode "Faith". A Number 6 encounters Barolay who had tortured and killed the 6 on New Caprica. After an exchange of insults, the 6 gives Barolay a brutal beating, including grabbing her head and slamming it to the side of a Raptor. After the fight is broken, Barolay gets up and says "I'm ok. I'm ok" before collapsing and dying of a fractured skull.
- Doctor Who: The Doctor's reaction to having his hand cut off is a mildly annoyed "You cut off my hand!" Of course, he immediately proceeds to grow himself a new one, which probably accounts for his lack of concern (though you'd think it would still hurt).
- Auton Rory gets one when relating his own death when he reappears to the Doctor's shock in "The Pandorica Opens"
Rory: Well, I died. And then I was a Roman. It's very distracting.
- This seems to run in the family. Rory's daughter River Song reacts quite similarly throughout "Let's Kill Hitler". She gets shot in the chest and doesn't tell anyone for minutes, before finally saying, "Hitler. Lousy shot." Later, after regenerating, she gets riddled with bullets, but just smiles smugly at the Nazi guards.
River Song: Here's a tip. Don't shoot a girl when she's regenerating!
- The Greatjon, in Game of Thrones, has two fingers bitten off by a direwolf when he draws his sword on Robb Stark. He then has the presence of mind to de-escalate the situation before it gets further out of hand by making a joke at his own expense while he stands there with a bleeding maimed hand.
Robb: My Lord Father taught me it was death to bare steel against your liege lord. Doubtless, the Greatjon only meant to cut my meat for me.
Greatjon: [holding a hand with two ragged stumps] Your meat... is bloody tough. [laughter]
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
- MythBusters: In keeping with his role as The Stoic, Jamie Hyenman is prone to these. Example from the "Exploding Jawbreaker" myth:
Ouch. Okay, that's really hot. Yeah, you could get a serious burn from that. [Beat]
In fact, I think I just did.
- In the fifth season of The Wire, a homeless marine suffering from PTSD tells one of his war stories that haunts him to a reporter. The story is about a friend of his being wounded by an IED and having both his hands blown off. The friend responds by laughing hysterically and shouting "Look, ma! No hands!"
- In Star Trek: The Next Generation, during the episode "Samaritan Snare", Captain Picard relates the story of how he recieved his artifical heart, explaining that when he was a rebellious cadet, he got involved in a barfight and ended up getting stabbed through the heart. Strangely, the thing he remembers most about it, is wondering why he started laughing?!
- This is later shown in a flashback in "Tapestry", where even Q seems oddly disturbed by this bizarre reaction.
- In the Smallville episode "Nemesis", Clark is weakened enough by Kryptonite dust that his left arm is skewered by a piece of shrapnel, but doesn't even notice it until Lex calls his attention to the blood running down his arm.
- LOST: In "Sundown" Sayid stabs "Locke" right in the chest; his reaction?
"Locke": Now, what'd you go and do that for?
- In one season of The Amazing Race, Gretchen fell down in a cave and was shown with blood on her face from a head wound. Her response was more of "I always wanted a facelift."
- Season 17 had Claire trying to topple a knight's armor with watermelons thrown from a slingshot. One of the watermelons backfired and hit Claire point blank in the face. It didn't slow her down one bit as her and Brook ended up finishing second during that race.
- Played for Drama in Prison Break when Charles Westmoreland is stabbed by Brad Bellick. He can't go to the infirmary or he'll blow the escape plan, which seals his fate, but he's able to stay alive and conceal his injury long enough for the Fox River Eight to enact their escape plan.
- In The Invisible Man, Darien and Hobbes come across a young woman who has been injected with a retrovirus designed to make her smarter. In addition to her tattered clothes and off-putting manner, the fact that she's walking across glass barefoot without noticing makes it clear that something is very wrong.
- In CSI: NY a bike courier pedaling at top speed was stabbed, resulting in a severed artery and a hairline fracture of the pelvis. He was so high on adrenaline he didn't even notice he was bleeding out.
- In Justified's Season 3 finale, Big Bad Robert Quarles has his arm severed by Elston Limehouse's meat cleaver. His reaction is to stare at it in shock and then try to grab it back from Raylan Givens, who is holding it. Likely justified by the amount of pain killers in Quarles' blood stream at the time, coupled with his blatant insanity.
- The related shows Hercules The Legendary Journeys and Xena: Warrior Princess had most of the protagonists be incredibly tough because they were half-gods or hung around with and battled half- or full-gods, so most injuries that were less than lethal were usually shrugged off as par for the course. One of the more specific incidents involved Xena having her shoulder dislocated mid battle; she didn't even notice until someone pointed it out, banged against a wall of the cave they were in (strongly enough to cause a tiny tremor) to pop it back into its socket, and then continued on without breaking pace. At least everyone around had the decency to have "did that just happen?" expressions on.
- One episode of House opens with a girl receiving a compound fracture in her leg during a car accident. When asked if she's hurt, she looks down, sees the shard of bone sticking out, and declares "I'm fine." Justified here in that she has Congenital Insensitivity to Pain.
- Professional wrestlers have a concept called "kayfabe," originally meaning the portrayal of the events as real, but has come to mean the ability to stay in character despite anything that might happen, including horrific injuries that should lay someone out for months.
- 5 Reasons Pro Wrestlers are the Best Actors in the World
- Akira Hokuto broke her neck during a tag team match in 1987. She went on to finish the match holding her head in place with her hands. She would also incur a number of other painful injuries (broken ribs and smashed knee, to name a few) where she would either wrestle through the pain or the match would be stopped by the promotion itself.
- Cactus Jack lost an ear mid-match with Vader. He kept going.
- Mick Foley made a career of this sort of thing. His Hell in the Cell match with The Undertaker he suffered a dislocated shoulder, a concussion, had a tooth pop out through the roof of his mouth and get stuck in his nose, a hole was torn in his lower lip, and he had dozens of thumbtacks stuck in his body by the end of the match. His reaction to all of that was not having one.
- Not to be outdone, Vader had his eyeball pop out of its socket during a match. He popped it back in and continued.
- This was one of Sabu's claims to fame, or infamy as the case may be. He was known for doing things like unwrapping the tape around his wrist to instead put it around his head hold his broken jaw shut, seriously injure a leg/knee/ankle and STILL do a half dozen jumping moves, or nearly cut his entire stomach open and just run out to the ringside and superglue the wound shut. The only time he actually seemed to care about being hurt was when he realized he broke his *neck* taking a back body drop wrong... And just left the ring long enough to be sure he wasn't completely paralyzed and then finished the match.
- In at least one version of the script of Othello, Cassio's line "my leg is cut in two" is written without an exclamation mark, making him seem like he's just plainly stating the nature of his injury instead of having an actual emotional reaction.
- In Romeo and Juliet, Mercutio says his wound from Tybalt is "just a scratch" before dying. Also counts as Sarcasm Mode.
- Dante from Devil May Cry is impaled with his own sword on a regular basis. He barely flinches. In fact, he barely reacts to any damage at all.
- An example of this happened during one of the first cutscenes in Devil May Cry 3 where several Mooks slashed and skewered Dante with scythes. Some of the scythe blades broke off and were stuck in his body... yet he shrugs it off as he casually walks over to his jukebox to turn on some music! During his stroll, he picks up a slice of pizza and pulls a blade out of his chest without even flinching! He turns the music on and precedes to slaughter the mooks effortlessly.
- Persona 4: "I think mine cracked too... Critical Hit to the nads..."
- in Persona 4 Arena the character Elizabeth brings this Up to Eleven by only reacting to pain with "hmm" or "interesting", also when getting knocked down from a particularly heavy blow, she will lay there on the ground simply daydreaming.
- Quoth the Spy of Team Fortress 2: "I appear to have burst into flames./I do believe I am on fire." This is made only more funny by the Spy's third reaction being the complete opposite, panicked like all the others ("Fire, fire, fire!"). As he's running around burning to death, he'll mix them. "I do believe I'm on fire. ...FIRE, FIRE, FIRE!!!"
- Likewise, most of the Heavy's reactions to fire are suitably loud, except one which is just him saying "Ooh!" as if he stubbed his toe or something.
- "You call that breaking my spine? You RED team ladies wouldn't know how to break a spine if- (crack) AAAAAAHHHHH MY SPINE!!!
- Because of the way the game assigns vocal responses, players can die with varying levels of noisiness...but it's hard not to chuckle a little at the Demoman's quiet, hissed "Oh, that smarts!" even as he's being blown into a dozen bloody pieces by a rocket. Given that Death Is Cheap though, this is more comical than morbid.
- The Soldier could be considered a variation on the trope; since he says pretty much everything in the same deranged bellow, it's hard to tell when he's shouting because he's been hit and when he's shouting because that's just the noise he makes when things happen.
- Near the end of the "Meet the Medic" video, the Scout steps out after having undergone extensive heart surgery (including, as it is revealed, accidently having a live pigeon inserted) and cheerfully announces to his allies, "You would not believe... how much this hurts."
- With the addition of Pyrovision, any time a player is hurt (or even killed) all voice responses are replaced with laughter.
- The comic Ring of Fired includes Pyro cutting off Soldier's hand, and Soldier complaining to Miss Pauling in the manner of a child tattling about a sibling. Miss Pauling's response is just as nonchalant.
- A Left 4 Dead survivor's response to friendly fire is usually just an irate "Quit shooting me!"
- Zaeed Massani of Mass Effect fame survived being shot in the head. He put it down to his own inherent badassitude. Granted, he's on a team with Garrus Vakarian (who survived taking a fighter jet's missile to the face) and Commander Shepard (who, by the time of conversation, has just bounced back from being dead for two years), so maybe a mere bullet doesn't deserve that much of a reaction.
- In Hellgate: London, the ending involves Murmur revealing his purpose in the story line, and thanking you for your help. During the whole speech, however, he is literally torn apart with gaping graphic wounds.
- The Mooks in No More Heroes, upon being brutally sliced in half, will sometimes scream "my spleen!"
- Another possible line is "I don't feel shit."
- The 51st ranked assassin from the second game reacts to being decapitated by waiting silently for several minutes before giving a speech.
- In Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance, there is a support conversation between Kieran and Rhys, who notices that Kieran has an axe lodged in his head.
Kieran: Hey, Rhys! Nice day, isn't it.
Rhys: Oh, hello, Kier... Yaaaa! What happened to you!?
Kieran: Huh? What is it?
Rhys: Th-there's blood gushing down the side of your head!
Kieran: Hm? Why, so there is... Isn't that odd?
Rhys: Odd? Please, hold still! Just stay there! Let me get my heal staff.
Kieran: Heal staff? Bah! I'm fine. A scratch like this will heal itself! You should have seen the time I fought the Giant Scorpions of...
- In Fire Emblem Awakening, Henry barely seems to notice when he's injured in battle. Maribelle once finds him bleeding all over and almost freaks out, but he laughs it off.
- Agro, the horse from Shadow of the Colossus, could be counted. If he's hit with an exploding arrow, falls from a low cliff (which could permanently cripple a real horse), or gets shot by Basaran, the most he'll do is limp for a while — and he'll even stop early if you jump on his back.
- Yuri Hyuga in the first Shadow Hearts game had his arm sliced off by a minion. He doesn't flinch, instead he crushed the imp with his remaining hand, and just reattaches his own arm.
- In Mega Man & Bass, King chopped Proto Man in half. His reaction? "It's just a scratch..." Justified in that he's a robot and has a shiny new pair of legs by the end of the game, but his reaction is still eyebrow-raisingly blasť.
- In Dwarf Fortress, dwarves tend not to notice that they've caught on fire. This can be troublesome, as fire will eventually kill them, and they can easily spread it as they go about their business.
- When they do notice, very often this will take the form of them deciding they're a little tired and need a lie-down... on a flammable wooden bed...
- Or that they're awfully thirsty and would like a drink... from the booze stockpile.
- In the Bonus Stage of Touhou Eiyashou ~ Imperishable Night, Mokou's reaction to being repeatedly killed and resurrected is "Ow, it hurts!". Thank you Mokou, we never would have known otherwise. This is hinted to be due to doing the same thing with Kaguya nearly every single day for several centuries, which would certainly build one's tolerance for pain.
- American McGee's Alice has the Dormouse and the March Hare who have gone under some serious Body Horror. They barely react to that fact, simply asking for tea. The Dormouse is the extreme example, though.
- The Dormouse is arguably justified, given the implication that he's being drugged as well as undergone physical experiments. Of course, the Griffin also claims that their failure to comprehend their situations are because "they're blithering idiots".
- Quake IV: An overheard radio conversion (paraphrased)
Marine: (requests medical evac)
Radio operator: Who is this? I can't get a read on your ID chip.
Marine: My chip was damaged.
Radio operator: What? those chips are implanted near your heart.
Marine: I know, I'm looking at it.
- Cultists in the original Dawn of War have the tendency to announce "Oh! My spleen!" after being slammed by a Space Marine (as in, 7 feet of equal parts cybernetics, genetic engineering, and extreme prejudice, with power armor overlaying the whole mix) hard enough to land a good thirty feet away.
- A story-wise broken character in a fighting game that involves Arc System Works usually had their 'downed' sprite to be actually relaxing as if giving the impression of "Look at how much damn I give.", which you will see a lot when they've already taken a good dose of beating. Examples include Slayer, Rachel Alucard and Elizabeth.
- Most people (including the player character) in The Town With No Name are simply annoyed by getting shot in the chest. They still fall over and die, however.
- During the events of Metal Gear Solid 4, resident Depraved Bisexual Vamp gets shot in the head while on the phone. He then pirouettes on the spot throwing his phone into the air, catches it, finishs the conversation and hangs up, gives some orders to his troops, then finally says that he'll "be taking a nap," before collapsing. It should be noted that Vamp has a crazy powerful Healing Factor.
- In Dead Space 2, Ellie gets her Eyeball gouged out with a screwdriver by Stross, who has completely lost his marbles. Seconds later, Stross confronts Isaac, holding up the screwdriver with the eye still in it... Ellie then clubs him with a length of metal pipe, glares at Isaac, and tells him "You owe me an eye, you bastard!".
- In The Walking Dead, a certain character fails to realize that he has been fatally impaled on a fence spike after falling off a balcony, thinking he has only hurt his leg. It's Ben.
- In the first mission of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, Raiden meets Jetstream Sam, who then proceeds to trounce him in a Hopeless Boss Fight. During a cutscene after all your health runs out, Raiden gets his left eye slashed out shortly before losing an arm. His reaction? An irritated "Shit! Not again!" Justified in that he has Nanomachines coursing through his body that prevent him from feeling pain. And because he's a cyborg.
- There are a lot of underreactions in this game, with bosses often talking about anything other than the fact that they've just been cut to shreds, and with Mooks reacting to leg slices with almost funny lines.
Enemy: My legs! You fuck!
Enemy: I'll still kick your ass!
- Somewhat of a running joke in Silent Hill 4. Richard Braintree's first meeting with Henry has him falling off of at least a thirty foot drop, to which his reaction is "Ouch! Dammit!" before promptly getting up and pointing a gun at Henry. The Gum Heads show just as little reaction to falling out of the sky, and later, near the end of the game, it's done again, this time with Richard as a ghost, and the only one that can't fly or float around.
- Sakazaki Yuuya of Hatoful Boyfriend is so much more concerned about the people he wants to protect than he is about himself that he successfully hides pain of any sort, including physical. In Holiday Star he shoves the protagonist out of the way of a tank shell and is burned in the process to the point where he smells delicious and can't stand, but he downplays it and is more concerned about her.
- Kengo in Little Busters! is awfully calm about the whole arm being broken thing, and even insists on still playing baseball with the other Little Busters, claiming that he can still swing the bat with one hand. Later, it's revealed that he was faking it so he could get out of having to do kendo anymore.
- In Umineko no Naku Koro ni Episode 7: Requiem of the Golden Witch, the following exchange:
Lion: Will... your left arm!
Will: Ah, right. Must have forgotten it. It'd be a pain to go back and get it now.
- In Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth, Shi-Long Lang gets shot in the leg... and doesn't even acknowledge it.
- As said above, Emiya Shirou in all the Fate/stay night routes tends to not worry overly much about incredible bodily harm, due to an extremely potent Healing Factor. However, in one route wherein he doesn't have access to said Healing Factor, he gets caught in a kind of mana explosion and panics for a moment because he can't feel anything... then realizes that "all" that happened is his left arm got blown off. Rather than freak out about that, he express great relief. It's still treated as a life-threatening injury, though, which has consequences for the rest of the story since it's replaced by someone else's arm
- The Adventures of Dr. McNinja: Dan McNinja sets himself on fire to escape other ninjas, and you would expect someone as badass as him to be able to shrug it off, and he did, but his son seems genuinely worried about him being set ablaze.
- Axe Cop irritably declares "This is the worst day of my life!" in response to having his head chopped off.
- Clan of the Cats: The wizard councilor Timon, Back from the Dead after having his throat slit, remarks he's done worse damage shaving.
- From Concerned: Quick, pull this pipe out of my midsection! It got stuck there when I accidentally shot myself in the hip and then fell off a ledge!
- Darths & Droids has Ponda Baba reacting this way after his arm gets sliced off.
Ponda Baba: What the hell are you doing? I was just messing with the kid! That arm's gonna take me hours to grow back!
Obi-Wan: Uh... I'm sorry... but...
Ponda Baba: Nah, just kidding. It's gone forever. And it hurts a lot.
- Digger brings us its eponymous protagonist's reaction to being shot in the shoulder with an arrow: "I can feel the thing wiggling around. It's reasonably excruciating."
- Dominic Deegan gives an interesting version, in that both characters are relatively nonplussed. Given their environment, this is understandable.
- "It hurts and stings" was a Running Gag in the webcomic Elf Only Inn for a while.
- In Girl Genius, it takes four panels for Higgs to react to getting stabbed straight through his torso (Needless to say, gore warning.) . Of course, this is the "Unstoppable" Higgs, and the Girl Genius WMG page has a load of theories of him being more, or other, than a simple squishy human.
- In Homestuck, alternate Dave only has one response to a slashed throat:
- Also, Tavros, when he gets paralyzed.
AT: vRISKA JUST PUSHED mE OFF A CLIFF
AT: tHAT'S REALLY ALL THERE IS TO SAY ON THE MATTER.
- Whenever something like this happens to Richard in Looking for Group, he nearly always makes a snarky comment or just ignores it unless it gets utterly annoying. Loses both his arms? Steals a bear's. Gets his back full of arrows? "Is there something on my back?" Axe in his forehead? "Good was shot a that. Toast. HEHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHE!" (he then goes on with his day as such). Justified because he's undead.
- Recent developments have shown that Richard is not undead, and something actually hurting him is a sign that he needs to recharge his powers.
- This Nerf NOW!! strip has the female engineer rather nonchalantly and seductively asking the Pyro if he could help her. While on fire.
- Elan does it in The Order of the Stick:
- Similarly in this. How does a demon roach react after being impaled by a jail bar during O-Chul's prison break? "Ah, crap."
- Early on in the strip, Roy throws Xykon into Dorukan's Gate. Just before he explodes, Xykon calmly states "Y'know, actually, this isn't that bad." Justified, like Richard's case, because he's undead, a lich to be exact, and regenerates from his phylactery over the next few weeks.
- Nancy from Ow, my sanity gets a little annoyed when you cut her in half.
- From Penny Arcade when Cliff Bleszinski is being burnt at the stake: "The heat is tremendous. I believe it is fire-related."
Tycho: 911? I've cut off all my fingers. They are all gone. It is excruciating, yes! Please send an ambulance to...Oh. Well yeah. They should definitely finish their quest first.
- In Pv P: "What was that?" "That was the sound of a broadhead arrow piercing my arm and embedding itself into my humerus."
- Riff from Sluggy Freelance has one of the most extreme examples.
Riff: Nobody panic, but I may have just killed myself. Let me check my notes.
- Schlock Mercenary. Captain Tagon treats his ocular cutlery (read: fork in eye) this way.
- After being sniped with a headshot, Sergeant Ebbirnoth starts making snarky commentary to distract himself from the pain. As an Unioc, his brain is in his pelvic cavity.
- Sebastian of True Villains has a hole in his aura, constantly draining his energy out into nothingness, and if left unchecked, he will wither away and die. His reaction? "... Well. Crap."
- Played for Drama in Drowtales, when Rann'dirk gets a hammer directly to his (helmeted) head and keeps fighting right up until his opponent detonates a golem core as a kamikaze attack, and once the action has ended he takes off his helmet and is bleeding profusely and horrifies his comrades due to the fact that he doesn't feel it. While he's been "tainted" or subject to a procedure that naturally dulls pain this is pretty extreme, and foreshadows that he, like most of his clan, was giving an intentionally faulty procedure that will eventually kill him.
- Done several times by the title character of Nimona, who doesn't even notice the arrow sticking out of her leg until her boss points it out to her - to which she responds with a flat "Oh." This gets a lot less funny and a lot more suspicious when she shows Ballister exactly the same nonchalance a week after having her head chopped off and DYING.
- Late in 8-Bit Theater, our "heroes" have... "acquired" some holy weapons, which harm any evildoers that try to wield them. When Black Mage grabs one of the weapons... "I appear to have come aflame."
- In the Adventure Time episode "No One Can Hear You", Finn gets his legs snapped backwards by a rampaging deer. His reaction before passing out? "Whatever." The look on his face, however, tells a different story.
- The Ice King in "Lady and Peebles" has been torn open by Ricardio and his living tissue used to grow a fortress of flesh.
Princess Bubblegum: (Screams).
Ice King: Hey.
- In "Escape from the Citadel", Finn has his arm torn off at the elbow, but doesn't even mention it, being far more concerned with his dad abandoning him again. Earlier in the same episode, Finn's dad Martin has his legs Stripped to the Bone and calmly asks Finn and Jake to treat the injury with healing blood of the citadel's guardian; the most he says about the wound is that it "really stings."
- In Avatar: The Last Airbender, Iroh can't decide whether a plant he found is a type of tea leaf, or poisonous.
Iroh: Zuko, remember that plant I thought might be tea?
Zuko: You didn't!
Iroh: I did. (Turns around to show his face has become red and swollen) And it wasn't.
Zuko: (Repulsed) Yah!
Iroh: When the rash spreads to my throat, I will stop breathing.
- Courage the Cowardly Dog: Katz's normal reaction to getting hit? A deadpan delivery of one of his Catch Phrase, "I wish you hadn't done that."
- Occurs numerous times in Drawn Together, most notably in the montage of Captain Hero's "adult childhood" where he falls off of his bike and scrapes his knee in a stereotypically childish manner. When he reveals the scrape, a large section of his leg is missing with his bone snapped but it is treated as a scrape anyway.
- Happens all the time in Ed, Edd n Eddy. For example, when Ed's toy makes a hole in Eddy's belly, he just complains "Ed, your stupid toy ate my breakfast!"
- A cutaway gag in Family Guy shows what the family would be like if they were stereotypical high class gentlemen. Halfway through the scene, Peter spontaneously combusts and calmly says "Oh dear." then describes it in an incredibly casual manner.
- Another cutaway features Brian talking to a disfigured WWII veteran. Disfigured as in, he's only a head.
Veteran: I'm glad I could do my part.
Brian: I think you might have done too much.
- Yet another one features Peter asking Chris to turn a firehose on so he can take a drink. Chris accidentally blasts the flesh off of Peter's entire head, and he complains that he got his shirt wet.
- In Frisky Dingo, Killface is somewhat concerned about the giant pipe impaling his left lung, but he insists that the doctor treat the shallow cut on his son's arm first.
- A later episode has a rocket pierce him through the chest. He's only mildly annoyed at the whole situation. Even the gaping hole it left after the explosion doesn't faze him much.
- On Futurama, after Planet Express's boiler blows up, we see Fry (and Zoidberg) in a hospital, seeming rather nonchalant, then it pans down to show he's been impaled with a pipe.
Zoidberg: Oh, the hypochondriac's back! So what is it this time?
Fry: Well, my lead pipe hurts a little.
Zoidberg: That's normal.
- Fry losing limbs, or being otherwise grievously injured, and not being fazed has become a running gag at this point.
- This is pretty typical for Zoidberg. Even his own autopsy struggles to hold his attention.
(surgeon removes Zoid's heart)
Zoidberg: Take, I've got four of them.
(surgeon starts cutting something with a hacksaw.)
Zoidberg: Don't cut that! I need that to speak!
(surgeon pauses, then resumes cutting. Faster.)
- Squidward, after seeing that SpongeBob saved an exploding pie throughout the entire episode and being hit with the pie in the face, causing the entire city of Bikini Bottom to explode, just says "ouch."
- In the episode "Dunces and Dragons", SpongeBob goes to a blacksmith for armor and the blacksmith finishes his knight look with a sword, but it's too heavy for SpongeBob to lift so he ends up tossing it into the blacksmith's chest. He shrugs it off like it's nothing saying that it'll require a few stitches.
- G.I. Joe: Renegades has Major Bludd losing an eye to an explosion in one ep, then an arm to an alligator in another, only pausing long enough in both instances to make a Badass Boast. "Hope ya choke on it."
- When Billy fell off his bicycle on his way over to a lemonade stand on The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, he scrapes his face along the pavement. When he slides up to the stand, he raises his head and reveals that his entire face has been scraped off and is now skeletal. He seemingly didn't notice.
- In the very next scene, his face is back to normal, with only a pair of bandages on his nose to show for it.
- Ray, a character on the cartoon The Head (shown on MTV's Oddities), has a lawnmower blade lodged in his skull. He's been told that he'll die if it's removed, so he's stuck with the thing.
- Hulk Vs Wolverine we get Deadpool who lost an arm, and being stomped by Hulk. His reaction? A joke ("Could you give me a hand?") And "Ow...".
- Justified by his Healing Factor. All he has to do is reattach it.
- Deadpool was more depressed that Wolvie slashed his favorite gun than losing his arm.
- During a supervillain trust building exercise in Justice League, Killer Frost is expected to use her ice powers to catch Giganta—falling from a cliff—who warns that she's heavier than she looks. We then hear a giant crash from offscreen, followed by Killer Frost saying "Ow."
- A subplot on one episode of Mission Hill had Wally attempting to persuade his boyfriend to go to the hospital after getting a knife stuck in the top of his head. Gus continues to act like everything is perfectly normal, the only concession to his injury being a giant hat so he stops frightening customers.
- Misery from Ruby Gloom often says "Ow." whenever she's randomly struck by lightning. A Friday the 13th episode revealed that she's so used to bad luck that it's quite comforting for her.
- In Sealab 2021, Sparks and Captain Murphy don't seem to mind their "mind-blowingly painful" tortures during their stay in Hell. For the record, the latter was in a lava bath, while the former allegedly had burning coals shoved up his ass.
Sparks: Right to the rim, baby.
- The Simpsons:
- In Halloween short "In the Belly of the Boss", the Simpsons drop a bomb from the ship into Mr. Burns' stomach and it goes off inside him, causing his stomach to swell momentarily. Burns' reaction was a flat "Well, that hurt like hell."
- In a regular episode Lenny once gets a coin embedded in his forehead. After a moment's panic "Get it out! Get it out!" it only succeeds in starting to spurt blood at an alarming rate, leading to "Put it back in! Put it back in!". He then promptly shrugs off going to a hospital and continues about his business, leading to an even more hilarious moment where he tips his hat to a passing woman, by removing the coin.
- During "Realty Bites", Snake attempts to get his car Li'l Bandit back from Homer by setting up a line of piano wire to decapitate him. Homer ducks in time and the next car shown passing is Kirk Van Houten angrily complaining that his deli sandwich wasn't cut while waving his arm out. The wire takes his arm off from the elbow. Kirk's response is an "Ow" in a disappointed tone.
- In Brother from The Same Planet Homer falls backwards onto a fire hydrant and has his body bent. He casually states that its "Even more painful than it looks."
- When South Park's Mr. Garrison gets his first sex change (from a man to a woman), we see live-action footage of genital surgery. He doesn't even get anesthetized and his reaction to the pain is a flat "Ooh, that stings".
- During a Fairly OddParents episode in which they parody Star Wars (Timmy being Skywalker, naturally), Timmy's hand gets light saber'd off like in the movie, but his response is different: "Hey, I've only got two of those!"
- In the Regular Show episode "Death Bear", after Animal Control is brought in to take on the titular creature, all of who are no match for the bear, the third member gets his arms ripped off.
Animal Control Officer #3: I wanna go home.
- Done very creepily in one episode of Teen Titans. While fighting Slade, Robin kicks him in the head so hard it snaps his neck. Slade's response is to stand still for a moment, then snap his neck casually back into place and keep coming, much to Robin's shock and squick. This is foreshadowing that Slade is actually undead at the time.
- Waspinator from Beast Wars does this a lot. He seems to care less about the excruciating pain of being crushed, impaled, blown to bits, etc., than the frequency with which it happens to him and the fact that nobody else seems to care when it does. That, and he's annoyed about having to put himself back together all the time.
- In Not Without My Handbag, Auntie considers being dead (and buried for six months) to be a minor inconvenience at worst, unlike leaving her handbag behind.
- Truth in Television, in some instances. Superficial wounds tend to hurt more than deep ones, both because of the greater concentration of nerve endings near the surface of the skin and because injury makes the body release natural painkillers. Handgun bullets for example are very likely to kill you but on the whole don't hurt much more than a mild burning sensation. People can often be completely unaware of multiple gunshots to the trunk and instead will complain about the graze (which hurts like hell).
- Some people do not possess the ability to feel pain. This can lead to them suffering serious injuries and only realizing it when their bodies stop functioning. The condition is called Congenital insensitivity to pain with anhidrosis or CIPA. (Very rare, and the victims don't often survive to adulthood.)
- Leprosy degenerates the nerves in the extremities of the body i.e. fingers, hands, toes, feet. Skin sores, high infection, and no pain is just a recipe for unintentional gangrene; which is the actual cause of lost limbs.
- As an subversion the Order of Saint Lazarus was originally an order of knights infected with leprosy. They had a reputation for being extremly hard to kill since they did not feel most of their wounds.
- Major injuries tend to cause shock, which can lock out pain (and also cause odd behavior in general).
- In the real world, panic doesn't just mean screaming and running in circles; it can produce an assortment of odd behavior including ignoring the situation entirely. (Whether or not the person is injured.)
- Go to YouTube and look up a faceplant or epic fail compliation of video (it should be easy; there's thousands of them). More often than not, there's several people who, after scraping off a portion of their arms or faces, get right back up and pick up their skateboard or bicycle. Some even make light of their situation (groaning like a zombie after seeing their bloodied faces is a popular one). This may be because the adrenaline in their bodies turns what would be an incredibly painful wound into a mildly annoying itch.
- Similarly, a readers digest story was submitted wherein a teacher at a school warned the kids about how high they were climbing in a tree. Sure enough, not long after she walked away, one of the kids fell a good six meters out of a tree (around Twenty feet), landed on his back, and ran over screaming because cut under his fingernail. When she pointed out that he was bleeding all over his leg, he just said "Oh. That too."
- An anecdotal occurrence came from the Napoleonic Wars — specifically near the end of the Battle of Waterloo, with the British command staff observing the French attacks from a hilltop. Cannons fire, and:
Lord Uxbridge: By God, Sir! I've lost my leg!
Wellington: By God, sir, so you have!
Uxbridge: (while getting his stump amputated on the field) The knife appears somewhat blunt.
- A similar bit of battlefield black humor occurred during or after the Battle of Trafalgar. A British sailor's injury was so grave as to require the amputation of his leg. Said sailor's reaction was: "Never! Where shall I find another match for this one?"
- When Nelson was fatally shot in the back at Trafalgar, he said: "Why my dear Hardy, I do believe they've done it at last. My backbone is shot through. Take care of Lady Hamilton for me."
- In real life, while campaigning for re-election, US President Theodore Roosevelt was shot in the chest and the bullet went through his steel glasses case and the folded speech he was about to give before it hit him, but by that point, it had been slowed enough to not be a life-threatening wound. Declining suggestions that a hospital visit might be in order, Roosevelt instead proceeded to give a 90 minute speech, opening with the lines:
"Ladies and gentlemen, I don't know whether you fully understand that I have just been shot; but it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose." note
- Roosevelt became president after the assassination of William McKinley, who died not from the gunshots themselves but 8 days later from gangrene after surgery in early 20th century conditions. Avoiding the operating room when he knew it wasn't necessarily life threatening was probably very high on Roosevelt's priority list.
- His cousin Franklin D. Roosevelt simply said "I have a terrific pain in the back of my head." before dying from a cerebral hemorrhage.
- Leon Trotsky, formerly Vladimir Lenin's #2 man, was seeking asylum in Mexico City. An assassin sent by Josef Stalin broke into his home, and buried an ice axe in his head. Trotsky stood up, ice axe in head, spat on his assailant and then fought off the assassin before he was subdued by his bodyguard. He was rushed to the hospital, and died a day later. "Hopefully he lived long enough to fire his bodyguards..."
- Douglas Bader's diary entry after losing both his legs in a plane crash: "Crashed slow-rolling near ground. Bad show." Of course, being an RAF pilot he had both Stiff Upper Lip and working Danger Deadpan in his favour.
- When the sheer scale of his injuries sank in, however, Bader reacted to his predicament about how you'd expect someone would in Real Life. Badly.
- After recovering from his Heroic BSOD (and getting back his flight status) he eventually had another crash that he survived only due to having previously lost both legs: His artificial legs were pinned in the plane, and it took a considerable time to free them. While walking away from the wreckage, he noticed his legs didn't seem to be working properly. It turned out both lower leg sections had been crushed. Had they been his original legs, he would likely have bled to death before he could have been freed.
- After John Hinkley's attempt on his life, Ronald Reagan was unaware that he'd been hit by a bullet note until he started coughing up blood on the way back to the White House.
- Following the 1985 Tampa Bay Buccaneers season, punter Frank Garcia was diagnosed with a broken leg. He'd been playing that way for half the year.
- During his No Cure for Cancer special, Denis Leary relates how his father, an Irish immigrant, reacted to nearly cutting off his thumb with a circular saw. Mainly, patching it up with electrical tape and driving himself to the hospital because his sense of masculinity wouldn't let him let himself be driven there by a woman. Denis then says the following:
I turned to my brother and said "Hey pal, forget about crying, okay? Crying is over. We're never gonna be able to cry about anything ever, okay? Our father figure is a man who could sever his own head with a chainsaw and he'd staple gun it back on *staple sound effects* 'Fuckin head came off!' *staple sound effects*"
- There were multiple cases of labor (or car) accidents when the victim reacted like this - shock masks the pain of the wound at first and allows the person to use first aid. The truly excruciating pain comes about 30 minutes later, when first shock wears off.
- He also relates how during a visit home Denis once saw his father shoot a nail through his hand with a nailgun, and without missing a beat pulled it out with his teeth. Mr. Leary was quite the man.
- This Cracked article has 5 rather notable real life cases of this trope.
- Actress Natasha Richardson hit a tree while skiing and whacked her head. She felt OK and sent the medics away. An hour or so later help was summoned again due to increased pressure from the bleeding in her brain, but by then it was too late and she died in the hospital.
- This is actually the classic presentation of an epidural hematoma, which Ms. Richardson died from, and one of many reasons why they are almost always fatal—the person genuinely feels okay initially and only as time goes on do the symptoms worsen, by which point it's too late to save the person.
- A Truth in Television - as mentioned above, some injuries (namely losing a limb) are so severe that people go immediately into shock, and often talk quite calmly about the lost limb while not feeling any pain at all.
- Severe burn victims often do not have pain in the most badly burned areas, as the nerve endings are destroyed. Of course, the edges of the burned areas are still very much alive. The nerve endings at the actual burn site will eventually grow back, and then the victims will feel them.
- Empress Elisabeth of Austria was stabbed in the heart by an assassin. She fell over but was able to get back up and stated that she felt no pain, believing that he had simply missed (in reality, the 4-inch blade had gone all the way in). Later when she removed her clothes she promptly died from her wound, her corset being the only thing keeping her from bleeding out.
- While not nearly as serious as some others on the list, Sean Bean was assaulted and stabbed with a broken glass bottle in a bar fight. His response? He refused medical attention, patched himself up with the bar's first aid kit, and ordered another drink.
- Subverted in one Story Corps interview- the interviewee's father had a wooden leg which broke one day while he was working on a farm. The man cried, "Oh darn, I think I broke my foot!" and then just snapped it back in place and kept working. The person who was helping him didn't know the leg was a prosthetic, and turned white as a sheet and later called the man "the toughest man I've ever seen."
- New Zealand rugby player Wayne Shelford had his scrotum torn open during a ruck, leaving his testicle dangling. He simply told the medic to sew it back up and continued the game until he was knocked out later by a blow to the head.
- A man named William Striler pulled a revolver from his coat outside a courthouse and fired six shots at 53 year-old attorney Gerry Curry. Despite being covered in blood from several gunshot wounds to his upper body, Curry just walked away, shrugging.
- Happens often in professional cycling. The Other Wiki explains this about stage 6 of the 2012 edition of Tour de France:
"Vacansoleil-DCM's Wout Poels, who tried to ride on for 10 km but eventually had to abandon; he was later diagnosed with a ruptured spleen and kidney, as well as three broken ribs and bruised lungs. After completing the stage, Team Katusha's ”scar Freire (broken rib and punctured lung), Imanol Erviti of the Movistar Team ("loss of muscle mass"), and Maarten Wynants of Rabobank (broken ribs and punctured lung) had to withdraw as well."
- This is one single crash. Crashes happen often, and people will do anything to complete the race.
- A man shoots himself accidentally in the arse, apologizes to the people around him, and drives himself to the hospital.
- Tablesaw blades are so fast and so sharp that by the time you cut your entire hand off with one the sensation hasn't even reached your brain. To fix this one company has made a line of tablesaws that can distinguish between wood and human flesh. The creator showing his faith in his machine by putting his finger up to a turning saw blade with ultra high speed cameras showing how the safesaw stops the blade.
- Athletes in general. Injuries that would freak people out most of the time tend to be shrugged off or flat out ignored.
- In Virginia, a gymnast misjudged a distance and rammed her foot into a metal strip so hard three toes stopped moving. She looked at it, debated on whether she could keep going, and went so far as to ask her friends what they thought. When told to go home, she sat down, waited to see if her toes would start working again, and was forced to go home by the instructor. She didn't even limp as she left.
- The toes never worked quite right ever again.
- Can happen with musicians doing live performance, out of the adrenaline factor, that many of the worst injuries a live performer is prone to (falls, electric shock, ruptured or damaged eardrums or vocal cords, neck or back injuries) can induce a degree of shock or panic, affect nerves, or seem mild at first and worsen over time, and that some are concerned with looking as if the "stunt" was All Part of the Show or with upsetting fans.
- A possibly extreme example was the drummer of X Japan, Yoshiki Hayashi, who, during a 1995 show, suddenly stopped playing drums, reached up to rub his neck and shoulder, tried again but looked confused in a second when he couldn't move or hit the kicks, then collapsed. It seemed like his usual dramatic stage collapses for show, until the show was stopped and he was removed from the stage and taken away in an ambulance. It was later determined that he'd broken his neck, sustaining the split cervical spine discs that never would heal properly and required surgery years later - and most likely only avoiding death or quadriplegia out of sheer luck as to which split.
- Army Cpl. Josh Hargis suffered the aftermath of a suicide bomber. Through his injuries were bad enough to be in ICU and was on a respirator at the time, Hargis fought back against the doctors, who was trying to keep his hand down, as he gave a salute upon receiving a purple heart, given to soldiers injured in the line of duty. When other soldiers saw this, they were left in tears.
- Any direct injury or damage to the brain will not be felt because the brain lacks any sense of feeling. There might be a story or two out there about people who have had such traumatic injuries or other bodily issues (cancer/tumors) to the brain that they couldn't feel.
- True in almost all cases involving brain tumors. There are many people who have lived full, normal lives before dying of another cause with small benign pituitary tumors, never diagnosed until death (or diagnosed in an unrelated MRI or the like, but where watchful waiting was chosen as treatment because said tumors often never grow enough to require brain surgery, and their effects on hormones and the like can often be treated with less drastic pharmaceutical means). Unfortunately, malignant brain tumors (and benign ones that don't stop growing) are also often unnoticed until they have grown so big they actually affect brain function itself (e.g. vision deficits, apparent mental illness) or press on the skull or the spinal nerves enough to create headaches. (This is also why, if you have ever had a variety of cancer that even theoretically could metastasize to the brain, until you are pronounced cured and sometimes even after you have been, your doctor will usually insist on regular MRI or PET scans of your brain to make sure that it hasn't metastasized there - because unlike a bone or liver metastasis, there is no early physical warning sign.)
- Although he wasn't actually harmed, making this a downplayed example, Michael Jackson was driving his Rolls-Royce down the Ventura Freeway in California and was apparently so absorbed thinking about the lyrics to 'Billie Jean' that he didn't notice his car was on fire.