A foul beast from the depths of the abyss terrorizes a small peasant village. It devours their livestock, it kidnaps their children, and the less said about what it does to their women, the better. A band of purehearted heroes hears of their plight and sets off to slay the monster. The town mayor meets them at the gates to greet them...and insist that they leave immediately.
"Kill the beast?" he laughs. "Why would we ever want to do that? Ever since he showed up, the king has paid us more in aid money than we'd ever get through farming! Now turn around and head home, before I have to send the mob after you with Torches and Pitchforks
Sometimes it happens: the monster makes money, and its purported "victims" — or a single shrewd (and often heartless) member of the public — will put up with it, or even harness it for the sake of the benefits it brings, despite the harm it causes.
Compare Monster Protection Racket
, in which the profiteer has a more active role in the matter, and Mainlining the Monster
, when the profit doesn't come from the monster's mere presence but from a substance generated from the monster.
- In the finale of Ernest Scared Stupid, Chuck and Bobby take photos of the rampaging trolls in the hope of making a fortune off the merchandise. Then a troll grabs the camera and eats the film.
- In the novel Star Surgeon by James White, the Monitor Corps goes to help a planet where disease runs rampant. Dr. Conway figures out that the reason the planet has so much disfiguring disease is that the Empire that controls it is using it to get aid donations from other planets and is pocketing the donations. The Empire is also introducing new disease to keep the cash coming in.
- In The Icewind Dale Trilogy, Drizzt goes to steal a magical mask from the lair of a banshee and is surprised when the local townsfolk ask him not to kill her. They explain that her presence provides some protection from orcs and other monsters, is good for tourism, and she mostly just wants to be left alone, only attacking people who invade her lair.
- A twisted version appears in one episode: the "monster" is actually harmless, something along the lines of a tremendous alien bovine with an incredible Healing Factor. The people who capture it harvest it as an endless source of meat. True, the meat is apparently safe for human consumption, but in contrast to the show's tendency for Aliens Are Bastards, this monster is actually a non violent, peaceful slug like being that is being cut apart for meat while it's still alive, and the true villain is the asshole in charge, who ignores the Torchwood-3 team, his own conscience ridden Mooks, not to mention his own conscience, blithely ignoring the agony he's causing a perfectly innocent alien by telling everyone "it's only meat."
- In the episode "Reset", a medical firm that is in some way an Evil Counterpart to Torchwood-3 harvests alien material to make medical advances for the benefit of humanity. Unfortunately, the leader is a Mad Scientist who coldly tortures and exploits aliens like the villain of "Meat", and he callously eliminates humans he has used as guinea pigs for his alien derived treatments if it might expose what he has done.
- Married... with Children: In the season 2 opener, the Bundys vacation to a Florida town with only two tourist attractions: an axe-murdering serial killer, and a man who met Andy Griffith.
- In Dwarf Fortress, giant cave spiders are very dangerous, but giant cave spider silk produces the second most valuable cloth in the game (and the most valuable cloth from a renewable resource). Clever players look for ways to corral one into an inescapable area where it can still see and spit silk at their Dwarves, domesticated animals, or captured prisoners.
- In Spore, it is possible to tame and domesticate wild animals once you're in the Tribal stage. This even includes "Epic" creatures!
- In Baldur's Gate, you are admonished to not kill more than five ankhegs in the area south of Baldur's Gate by a local, the reason being that ankheg tunnels areate the soil and improve crop yields by about 5%.
- A recurring event on Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated. The Scooby Gang exists to solve mysteries; unfortunately, Crystal Cove's primary source of income is spooky tourism, and the mayor (Freddy's dad!) and the eternally ineffectual sheriff don't appreciate them exposing every Monster of the Week for the hoaxes they really are.
- A variant appears in the Adventure Time episode "Donny". The eponymous character is an obnoxious grass ogre who enjoys terrorizing a town of house-people: Finn and Jake manage to make him mend his ways, but it turns out that his noxious presence was the only thing keeping a ferocious pack of whywolves at bay. In the end, they have to convince Donny to go back to his old self, or else the whywolves will devour the entire town.