In these situations, we must emulate the Prime Minister. Dave:
What, cock it up and then blame someone else?
It is not easy to admit that we are responsible for our actions and deserve to be blamed—in fact for some people it's one of, if not the
most difficult thing(s) to do—and it is often far more comfortable to play the Blame Game
and convince ourselves that it is the fault of another, even though this is the coward's way out. We may blame others even when we know deep down in our hearts that it is our fault. Due to the Rule of Drama
, fictional characters will blame themselves
for things going south most of the time, but there are some cases where, just like in Real Life
, the character who really
is to blame will blame everyone else instead. Common variations include:
This is a frequent component of Comedic Sociopathy
. Also tends to involve Psychological Projection
and Moral Dissonance
. The diametric opposite
of It's All My Fault
. A character prone to this will likely try Glad I Thought of It
too. Compare Hypocritical Humor
, which can involve a similar blindness to one's own flaws, and Implausible Deniability
. See also It's All About Me
, which are key reasons why a character would fall into just about any of the above. If the character doesn't blame others, but isn't sorry for what s/he's done, see The Unapologetic
(however, the two tropes can overlap). This trope is the defining characteristic of The Unfair Sex
The formal term for this is "self-serving bias."
NOTE: Please remember that examples of people blaming others for something that's clearly someone else's
fault is not an example of this trope. This trope is only for when people attempt to shift the blame off of themselves.
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Anime & Manga
- Happens all the time in Ranma ˝. When something bad happens, the characters demand that the fault lies with someone else. Similarly every argument Ranma has with Akane is somehow always Ranma's fault. This trope is to be expected since the author herself describes the series as a Gag Manga.
- Taken a bit further than normal in Fushigi Boshi No Futago Hime: An episode has Altezza blaming Sophie for losing at a track meet, even though it's Altezza who started the whole thing by knocking over Sophie's basket with a ball. It's taken a bit further because she decides to retaliate in the following episode at a balloon race between their kingdoms. Amusingly, instead of getting all defensive against Altezza's accusation, Sophie brushes off her threat of retaliation with "You don't have to pay me back"... she's that kind of character.
- Bulma during the Shadow Dragons Arc in Dragon Ball GT somehow manages to blame Goku for starting the cycle of looking for the Dragon Balls, despite him not even knowing about them until she showed up looking for them in the original Dragon Ball.
- Akito of Fruits Basket cannot fathom being to blame for anything. Have sex with Kureno, while most can see that Shigure clearly loves her and then kick said lover off the Sohma estate when they sleep with Ren, Akito's mother as Revenge? It's her Zodiac to do with as she pleases. Lock somebody in isolation when they try to steal a "special" box that Akito knows is clearly empty? It's perfectly justified to put somebody's life in danger and what on earth is Kureno thinking betraying Akito and freeing said person from harm? And then Hatsuharu calls her out for almost killing Isuzu twice because she hates women for no good reason. Akito counters with telling him that it was really his fault that she was put in danger at all because he dated Isuzu anyway knowing that Akito hated her. Surprisingly, Hatsuharu agrees that he is partially to blame for Isuzu's suffering. Justified, since it's difficult for members of the Zodiac to think badly of Akito due to her supernatural influence over them as their "God".
- A particularly vicious example can also be found when Akito attacks Hatori with what looks like a vase, blinding him in one eye, and immediately starts asking the maimed doctor "Hatori, what's wrong?" before accusing Kana, Hatori's innocent would-be fiancee, of being responsible for Hatori's pain. Kana ends up agreeing, and the whole situation goes downhill from there.
- To an extent, Kyo also qualifies, externalising all of his (many, many) issues and blaming other for them, finding convenient scapegoats instead of dealing with his own self-hatred. Interestingly, he seems to have picked this up from his biological father, who in turn blames KYO for everything. Unlike his father, Kyo eventually gets over this and learns to accept responsibility for his actions.
- Rosario + Vampire: The whole reason Akua is convinced that Humans Are the Real Monsters is because her best friend/surrogate sister Jasmine was brutally murdered by an angry mob just for being a vampire. Of course, her reasoning falls a bit flat when one considers that the only reason said mob was formed was because Akua exposed herself and Jasmine as vampires by attacking a human boy who tried to befriend them out of paranoia.
- Azumanga Daioh: Tomo just can't take a lesson about her Jerkass behavior when she gets bitten by Mayaa. She'll "never trust an animal again" after she was the one treating it aggressively.
- In an early Pokémon episode, Ash is right on the verge of capturing a Weedle, when he is rudely interrupted by a samurai, who challenges him to a Pokémon match. During said match, which is a Mirror Match between their two Metapod taking Harden commands, the Weedle manages to escape back into its tree and alert the Beedrill, who capture Ash's Metapod. In one of the series' earliest Broken Aesops, Ash is forced to learn a lesson about not making excuses about not finishing what he started, even though it was the fault of the samurai, who berates him for all of this, that Ash wasn't able to finish in the first place, all because he didn't have the courtesy to wait until Ash was done. Even after all is said and done, and Ash rescues Metapod, he's still short one Weedle, which would eventually evolve into a Beedrill.
- From Code Geass:
- Suzaku demonstrates the more banal deflection of blame. Whenever the resistance takes lives/breaks the law/etc., they're bad and wrong. Yet the Empire is easily ten times worse in its treatment of Numbers, but everyone has to deal with that because they're in charge. Likewise, whenever his own culpability in such events is brought up, he acts like he doesn't have any choice in the matter, using his past as a shield.
- A partial example: Ohgi holds resentment towards Zero for his abandonment during the Black Rebellion and subsequent one-year disappearance, yet never takes his relationship with Villetta, the person linked to at least some degree with the two, or his resulting carelessness, into account.
- Another short-lived example is with Lelouch himself at the beginning. After he badly underestimates an opponent to the point where he would have been beaten if C.C hadn't saved him, he blames his subordinates for not following his orders (and while it is true that they didn't, he knew they were a bunch of untrained, undisciplined freedom fighters rather than a professional army, so he should have expected it,) and for his forces being so heavily at a disadvantage (again true, but again he knew that would be the case before going into battle, but went anyway). C.C just laughs at him, and points out that a good commander would make sure the battlefield was set to his advantage before starting. To his credit, Lelouch takes this advice very much to heart, and never lets himself get outmaneuvered to that extent again. Later on in the series, he shifts far to the other side of the self-blame spectrum.
- Persona 4:
- The entire plot of Paranoia Agent completely revolves around this. Japanese society has become so apathetic and uncaring, that everyone just makes excuses for why they couldn't get anything done, like being late for a delivery due to traffic. This creates an urban legend Eldritch Abomination whose concept quickly spreads memetically as a scapegoat to allow everyone to feel better for not owning up responsibility for their own actions. Said abomination eventually grows and causes catastrophic devastation. The kicker? The first victim created the concept to avoid facing the consequences of a puppy dying by her mistake. And only revived it years later as a way to deal with a deadline she couldn't make at work. Everyone else just picked up on it and it became real. Once she finally admits to her responsibility, the abomination goes away for good.
- In the first chapter of Samurai High School, Tsukiko says the reason she's mistaken for a guy is that her brother doesn't act like one.
- Haruna in Is This a Zombie? refused to accept that the reason Ayumu revealed Maelstrom's gender the way he did was because she impatiently pushed him into the vampire ninja.
- Dewey in Eureka Seven blames Holland for the failure of the sacrificial ritual, even though it was his own anger and impulsively trying to carry it out in response to being denied the right that caused it in the first place.
- Vincent Nightray from Pandora Hearts. Of course it's not his fault, he does it all for Gil. Besides, he is going to ask the Will of the Abyss to erase his own existence and past deeds.
- Lancer in Fate/Zero is magically cursed so that women automatically fall hopelessly in love with him; he has no control over this. When Saber (who has enough magical resistance to No Sell the attack) brings it up, he engages in some victim blaming, claiming it's her fault for being born a woman. However, later we see women who it does work on, and he clearly pities them deeply and regrets the curse.
- Mobile Suit Gundam: Char Aznable is pathologically incapable of accepting any accountability for his own actions. When Lalah, a former child prostitute who he turned into a Super Soldier is killed in action, it's the fault of her killer Amuro Ray. When Haman Khan, a traumatized sixteen year old girl whom he forced into being leader of Neo-Zeon, and then abandoned, becomes a tyrant, it's all on her. When the human race as a whole won't go in the direction he wants them to, they're the ones to blame for the meteor he tries to throw their way. Given Char's own mental instability it's quite likely that accepting responsibility for what he's done would break him.
- In Future GPX Cyber Formula, Naoki Shinjyo starts blaming his failures in the races on his mechanics during the latter half of the TV series, ignoring the fact that it's his recklessness and deliberately ignoring his boss's advice that caused it. It takes Miki talking some sense into him that makes him realize that his problems are his own doing.
- At one point in Calvin and Hobbes, Calvin blames Hobbes for breaking the battery case of a beanie, even though Calvin was the one who broke it. Played with in that after Hobbes calls him out on it, saying he had just been sitting there watching Calvin work when it snapped. Calvin then tearfully admits that he knows, and that having Hobbes take the blame will make him feel better.
- On top of that was Calvin's decision to not take part in elections when he's an adult, with the final reasoning of "It's easier to blame things than fix them."
- Really, this is a major part of Calvin's character. It's likely not a coincidence that he shares his name with John Calvin, who believed in predestination and thus that free will and responsibility were mere illusions.
- Dilbert: The Pointy-Haired Boss. In one comic he says that every time he and Dilbert disagree he ends up yelling, which is obviously Dilbert's fault, so he's sending Dilbert to a socialization class. Dilbert responds, "It looks like you've gained weight. Would you like me to start jogging to take care of that?"
- Nothing that the Pattersons of For Better or for Worse do is ever their fault: Mike blames his mistreatment of Liz on his parents for not giving him a kid brother like they were supposed to, Elly spends her life behaving as if she was somehow forced to become a wife and mother, John whines that people are simply too full of themselves to appreciate his gentle kidding around and not at all hateful verbal abuse, Liz blames fate for not guiding her properly when she messes up, and everyone blames April for killing Farley (who died saving a toddler aged April from drowning in a swiftly-moving river that she only got into because her mother neglected to lock the gate). It goes hand in hand with their refusal to apologize for anything; since nothing can ever be their fault, they can't apologize.
- While the writer was trying to force Anthony and Liz together, she turned him into a Jerk Ass who dogged his wife into having a kid she didn't want, and then blamed her for not being the perfect mother and having their marriage fall apart as a result. Many readers were not fooled (or amused).
- Lucy from Peanuts is quick to blame others for things that were often her fault in the first place, the worst example of this being "It's Your First Kiss Charlie Brown" (see Western Animation, below).
- Evangelion 303: Asuka suffered a minor case of this in third chapter when she complained that she was being blamed for hitting Shinji even though he had got her nearly killed (forgetting that Misato clearly told her that getting angry and shouting at him was reasonable but hitting a fellow pilot was utterly unacceptable and THAT was what she was being scolded for) and for botching the latest mission (which was completely her fault). In her favor, she was under much distress at the moment and not thinking clearly, and she got over that attitude straight after.
- In The Lion King Adventures, Simba tries to pin the blame on others a couple of times.
- Assumptions: Rainbow Dash's huge ego makes it downright impossible apologize to Caramel, who has been nothing but kind to her, after he find out she nearly killed him with a botched aerial trick. Rainbow chooses to fly away in shame rather than admit she wronged him, but later halfway-apologizes, which Caramel accepts.
- There have been quite a few Harry Potter fanfics written from the point of view of the Slytherin students. Very often in these stories, the Slytherins view themselves as the victims of injustice, of rampant "anti-Slytherin prejudice." The fact that people dislike or distrust the Slytherins never seems to be the Slytherins' fault for being bigots, bullies, or otherwise openly cruel and hostile to other students, particularly Muggle-borns.
- In The Blue Blur of Termina, Tatl stops Sonic from going after the Skull Kid and, as a result, gets left behind and accidentally injured by the imp. She immediately blames Sonic who, in turn, immediately calls her out on it:
Sonic: If it weren't for you and your friend, you wouldn't even be in this mess!
- Elly Patterson loves doing this in The New Retcons though the rest of her family isn't exactly innocent either. One example is blaming April for letting Farley and Sera get together while Sera was in heat when neither Elly nor Sera's owner Connie had bothered to spay/neuter their dogs. (And remember, April was four at the time.)
- Death Note Equestria: Twilight admits that she's had to kill a lot of innocent ponies in order to protect her identity, but says it's all L's fault — if she wasn't hunting Twilight, Twilight could have just focused on criminals.
- Equestria: A History Revealed:
- For an In-Universe example, the Lemony Narrator often does this when explaining the clear holes in her conspiracy theories, choosing to blame either the reader or traditionalist historians, even when the fault clearly lies in the Insane Troll Logic she used to get these theories.
- One of the chapters starts out with a lawsuit to a publishing company of a book she had previously used, stating that the love potion she made following its instructions was faulty, even though it was clear earlier on that she had completely botched the recipe. It is also Hilarious in Hindsight knowing that even the Cutie Mark Crusaders in the show somehow did a better job than her in following the recipe. It becomes even worse when she says that she was aware of the "Do Not Try at Home" section prefacing the book, but states that she "chose not to read that part, so she can't possibly be held accountable for that."
- In the Vocaloid fanfic, From Concert to Chaos, Miku Zatsune and Rin Arakawa use this excuse to justify their attack on Miku and Rin during a concert AND in front of over 16,000 fans. They genuinely believed that their boyfriends, Mikuo and Len, broke up with them because of Miku and Rin interfering, even though Miku and Rin were completely and utterly innocent.
- In Mega Man NT Warrior fanfic, Maylus Revenge, has Maylu pinning the blame of Roll turning against her in "Evil Empress Roll" on Roll all because she said she's ready for the "Super Great White Angel" when in fact, it was Maylu who suggested this strategy.
- Contract Labor: After attacking Keitaro over a misunderstanding, Motoko adamantly refuses to take responsibility for her own actions and instead blames Keitaro, the victim in the whole situation, for everything, electing to challenge him to an honor duel... which ends badly for her.
- Tenten and Neji in The Darkest Light have this regarding Naruto/Naruichi.
- Tenten badmouthed Naruto, who's considered a favorite grandson by the local quadrant boss, and said quadrant boss right in front of both. She's flat-out told the sole reason she wasn't killed is because Naruto knocked her out and asked for mercy. But all Tenten cares about is that he beat her effortlessly at swordsmanship (Naruto gave her a sword then used a stick to beat her for an hour). As a result she wants him dead for humiliating her.
- Neji tried to humiliate (and possibly traumatize) Hinata by having her "manhandled by a commoner" and having her father find out when he hired Naruichi to give her a massage. Unfortunately for him, Hiashi not only found out immediately, Naruichi also had a receipt showing exactly who hired him. While Hiashi was "training" Neji in the dojo, Naruichi fixed a problem with Hinata's spine, leading her to be both more skilled and more confidant. Like Tenten, Neji has had it explained to him that what happened (particularly Hinata activating his seal while thanking him) is his own fault but instead only cares about making Naruichi pay.
- The Immortal Game: Titan blames the ponykind for the deaths of his wife and sons, although it was Discord who was responsible for First Empyrean's death, and Titan himself was responsible for the deaths of his first wife, Harmony and Empyrean II.
- Most of the girls at the Hinata Inn suffer from this in An Alternate Keitaro Urashima. Naru, Motoko, Haruka and Granny Hina are all especially bad about this.
- Naru and Motoko also suffer from this to an extreme in For His Own Sake. No matter how badly they screw up, they both adamantly refuse to take responsibility for their own actions and will always pin the blame on somebody else, typically Keitaro. This tendency has caused them all manner of grief, but they still refuse to learn their lessons. However, as of chapter 24, Motoko has finally begun to avert this and realize just how much of her misery was her own damn fault.
- In Mega Man: Defender of the Human Race, Wily has this problem big-time, blaming everyone for failures except himself.
- He finally (and rightfully) blames himself for ProtoMan leaving in the episode 11 epilogue.
- A Shadow Of The Titans: HIVE Academy has a class named "Irrational Blame Assignment". According to Mammoth, "you can get a pass even if you fail by just making a good argument on why your lousy grade somehow wasn't your fault".
- In this Harry Potter Fic, Sirius blames Dumbledore for getting the Potters killed because he didn't warn them about Voldemort until a week before he showed up, seemingly forgetting that he had a much bigger role in causing their deaths: he suggested they make Peter Pettigrew the Potter's secret keeper, and Pettigrew subsequently betrayed them to Voldemort. Bizarrely, the author didn't think that Sirius would admit his responsibility for this, even though he does exactly that in the third book.
- In the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fic Running From Myself, two former classmates of Twilight's blame her for getting them suspended. The entire reason for their suspensions were because they were bullying Twilight to the point where she suffered problems well into adulthood. When they try to get sympathy from Rarity, she calls them out on this. Not that they listen.
- Rosario Vampire: Brightest Darkness Act VI:
- In chapter 27, Arial, Dark's guardian angel and now mother figure, insists that Mizore is not good enough for Dark in part because Mizore doesn't respect her. As pointed out by the others, Mizore has good reason not to respect her, especially considering the fact that Arial nearly killed Mizore in a jealous rage less than twenty-four hours ago.
- In chapter 44, after Kokoa and Sun's conflict over Gin spiral out of control to the point where Kokoa attacks Sun and beats her so brutally that Sun is left brain dead, Kurumu joins in with the others in lambasting Kokoa; while Kokoa did indeed go too far, it was Kurumu's own teasing over seeing Kokoa have sex with Werewolf!Gin, which Sun was spying on, that set Kokoa off in the first place.
- Shadow of the Dragon: In her Establishing Character Moment, Satome's mother shatters a plate of food while yelling at her son, and then blames him for it before beating the crap out of him.
- In Sun & Moon: Ascending Star, Aqua notes this tendency in Celestia during their training and endeavors to stamp it out.
- Ultra Fast Pony:
- Twilight Sparkle blames others (specifically Spike) for her mistakes occasionally. In "The Canon Has Misfired", she lets her mission to prevent the apocalypse get completely derailed. When the apocalypse comes, she says, "Dammit, I knew I forgot something! Why didn't Spike remind me?!" (completely ignoring the fact that Spike did try to remind her). In "Ponynet Fight!" she insists that her magic isn't working because Spike isn't concentrated hard enough (and she pointedly refuses to explain why her magic needs Spike's concentration).
- And "Pirate Shipping" has this gem:
Sweetie Belle: Just because something is my fault doesn't mean I'm not allowed to blame anyone else.
Films — Animation
- In The Incredibles, Syndrome's motivation falls kind of flat when you realize that even though Mr. Incredible told him he worked alone, Buddy had distracted him repeatedly, let Bomb Voyage escape, and had nearly gotten killed because he repeatedly tried to "help".
- In The Lion King, Scar tries to shift the blame for the lack of food to the lionesses who won't hunt, instead of admitting that letting the hyenas eat the lions' game was what caused their food shortage. When Simba has Scar at his mercy, Scar tries to shift blame onto the hyenas. They overhear, and become extremely anger. Anger is a hell of an appetite stimulant.
- In The Lion King II: Simba's Pride, Zira blames Kovu for Nuka getting himself killed trying to get the attention and praise she never gave him. She even weeps for her elder son briefly before turning her sorrow into anger at her youngest.
- Merida spends most of the film refusing to acknowledge her own role in the political disaster and her mother being turned into a bear. Actually admitting her fault is an essential bit of Character Development for her.
- Her mother, Queen Elinor, fits this trope as well. Elinor never seems to realize that most people, her daughter included, would react badly to being forced into marriage, and Elinor behaves as though she cannot understand why Merida would object. She does eventually have a My God, What Have I Done? moment... over a completely different misdeed, that of almost killing her daughter while in bear form.
- Played very darkly in the Disney animated movie The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Combine this with Sex Is Evil and I Am Horny, and you have Judge Claude Frollo.
- Frollo, a pious, merciless man, develops an obsession with the gypsy Esmeralda, rationalizing his lust by claiming she seduced him. All she did was flirt with him a little during her dance.
Frollo: It's not my fault! / I'm not to blame! / It is the gypsy girl, the witch who sent this flame!
- He then goes on to blame GOD.
Frollo: It's not my fault, / If in God's plan / He made the devil so much stronger than a man!
- Of course, the Ominous Latin Choir in the background doesn't seem to agree, singing the Act of Contrition during his song.
Choir: Mea Culpa/ Mea Culpa/ Mea Maxima Culpa (My fault/ My fault/ My most grievous fault)
- This accompanies Frollo's "It's not my fault!/ I'm not to blame!/ It is the gypsy girl, the witch who sent this flame!"
- Frollo also chases a woman through the city on his horse because he thinks the bundle she's carrying is stolen property, only to unintentionally kill her in front of Notre Dame; his excuse to the Archdeacon is that wouldn't have happened if she hadn't run from him in the first place. He also orders his men to burn down a home, with an innocent family still inside, with the excuse that they were harboring gypsies (despite the only "proof" being that someone had found a gypsy emblem on their property).
- Done by Goofy of all characters in A Goofy Movie. When their car starts rolling down the mountain he blames Max for both the car running away, (Goofy should have put the brakes on) and the door being locked. Max retorts that the locked door was on Goofy's side. Goofy then blames Max for distracting him and tells Max he should have put the brakes on himself, then he accidentally breaks it. Max use that to show that Goofy "ruins everything". Then Goofy blames Max for "ruining the vacation". Then Max told him he never even wanted to come and should have just let him stay home. The argument ends with Goofy saying all he wanted was to spend time with him and doesn't want them to become any more distant.
- Governor Ratcliffe from Pocahontas blames the American Indians for not finding any gold, John Smith for Taking the Bullet, and his own men for treason when they have him arrested.
- Played for very dark laughs in Alice in Wonderland; when the Queen of Hearts confronts a trio of cards for painting her roses red (after they accidentally planted white ones), the three of them start placing the blame on each other in a desperate attempt to keep their heads. By the end of their blame game, however, the Queen has had enough and cuts the knot by demanding that all of them get executed for it.
- In Monsters University, Sulley initially blames Mike for getting him kicked out of the Scare program, even though it was really his fault for neglecting his studies.
- Toy Story 3 has Jessie admit to Woody that the toys were wrong not to believe him. When she says that she was wrong specifically, Mr. Potato Head adds, "Jessie's right, Woody. She was wrong!"
- The Jungle Book 2 Shere Khan believes that Kaa knows where Mowgli is (after hearing the snake grumble "man-cub"). But truthfully, Kaa has no idea where Mowgli is, but Shere Kahn won't believe him and continues to threaten the snake. So to save his skin, Kaa fearfully lies to the tiger that Mowgli's at the swamp, allowing him to flee. When Shere Khan arrives at the swamp with Mowgli (of course) nowhere to be found, he angrily growls "That snake lied to me!" Well, Shere Khan, you didn't believe Kaa when he told you the truth. Sometimes you just gotta believe the snake when he tells you the truth for once.
Films — Live-Action
- Annie from Bridesmaids heaps a great deal of blame on her best friend's newer, richer, prettier friend, but not all the disaster that befalls Annie in the film — losing her job because she called a customer a C-word, wrecking her car because her taillights were broken, chewing out a potential love interest who was only trying to help her find her feet — is the fault of the new woman.
- In Caddyshack. Rodney Dangerfield drops his anchor into another boat. The other boat sinks, yet all Rodney says is "You scratched my anchor!"
- It's "okay" because the other guy is a gigantic dick, and though Dangerfield is even more of a dick than that to him, he's a charming, amicable schmoozer to everyone else.
- Epitomized by the comic duo Laurel and Hardy. Whenever things went wrong, Hardy would blame Laurel (regardless of what part of the blame he truly carried) with a reproachful "Here's another nice mess you've gotten me into!"
- This schtick is borrowed by Illuminatus!! where various different figures appear dressed as Laurel and Hardy, e.g. The Flood, everyone except Noah and Co have been drowned for their sins by a vengeful God. Jehovah (as Ollie) turns to Lucifer (as Stan) and says, "Now look what you made me do!" Lucifer cries. Hiroshima, a mushroom cloud rises above the city. Tens of thousands have been killed in a split second. President Truman (as Ollie) turns to Albert Einstein (as Stan) and says, "Now look what you made me do!" Einstein cries. etc.
- Likewise, Moe of The Three Stooges was quick to pin blame and administer physical punishment against Larry and Curly (or Shemp), even when whatever hilarious accident that had happened to Moe was his own fault.
- Spider-Man Trilogy:
- Harry blaming Peter for his father's death, even after finding out that his father was the Green Goblin. And in the third movie he at first refuses to help Peter save MJ at the end, blaming Peter for disfiguring his face. It was Harry's own stupid fault for throwing a grenade at Peter in the first place!
- Also Doctor Octopus in both the novelization and the videogame of the second movie blames Spider-Man for his wife's death, when it was the Doctor's own experiment that led to Rosie's death. The videogame adaptation has him snap out of his evil personality and admit that it was his own vanity that killed her. Ironically, his film incarnation avoids this completely by having Doctor Octopus completely uninterested in Spider-Man up until he's paid to kidnap him.
- Eddie Brock hates Peter for costing him the staff job at the Bugle. There are consequences to framing a man for robbery and falsifying journalistic documents, Eddie. This is actually Truth in Television: people who plagiarize rarely admit that what they're doing is wrong, and/or tell themselves they're a special case.
- Star Wars:
- C-3PO is famous for this, especially in A New Hope when he decides to go a different direction than R2-D2 in the Tatooine desert.
R2-D2: [beckoning whistle]
C-3PO: Where do you think you're going?
C-3PO: Well, I'm not going that way. It's much too rocky. This way is much easier.
C-3PO: What makes you think there are settlements over there?
R2-D2: [beeping and whistling]
C-3PO: Don't get technical with me.
R2-D2: [angry squawks]
C-3PO: What mission? What are you talking about?
R2-D2: [beeping and whistling]
C-3PO: I've just about had enough of you. Go that way. You'll be malfunctioning within a day, you nearsighted scrap pile. (kicks R2)
R2-D2: [startled beep]
C-3PO: (walks off) And don't let me catch you following me begging for help, because you won't get it.
R2-D2: [sad whistling leading into a loud yelp]
C-3PO: (turns around) No more adventures! I'm not going that way.
R2-D2: [angry honk and some muttering]
C-3PO: That malfunctioning little twerp. This is all his fault. He tricked me into going this way. But he'll do no better.
- In Revenge of the Sith, Anakin Skywalker blames Obi-Wan Kenobi for turning Padmé Amidala against him. It couldn't have been your sharp descent into violent murder and villainy, no...
- Later on, Anakin, waking on the slab, initially has this reaction to being told that he had killed Padmé. He thinks that he loves her, always will, could never will her death — but he remembers the cold terror he felt when thinking of her death (said terror is called "the dragon" in the text. It Makes Sense in Context) that made him create Darth Vader, and he remembers Vader's fury and hatred...
''And there is one blazing moment in which you finally understand that there was no dragon. That there was no Vader. That there was only you. Only Anakin Skywalker.
That it was all you. Is you.
Only you. You did it
- Used rather darkly in The Last King of Scotland, after Idi Amin has realized that exiling the Asian population of Uganda was a serious political mistake.
Amin: You should have told me not to throw out the Asians in the first place.
Nicholas: I did!
Amin: But you did not persuade me!
- The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause.
Jack Frost: (examines a sign he's "supervised" the elves putting up) Very nice! I've done it!
(the sign falls down and shatters, and he glares at the elves)
Jack Frost: Look what you've done!
- A non-comedic example can be seen in Repo! The Genetic Opera where Rotti and his kids use a constant (and catchy) chorus of this to convince Nathan that It's All My Fault.
- In the first Ghostbusters film, Walter Peck gets the Ghostbusters arrested for causing an explosion he himself had caused, in spite of their explicit warnings. Egon's response? "Your mother!"
- In X-Men: First Class, Erik blames Moira for Xavier getting shot, even though she was aiming for Erik who deflected the bullet. Xavier then tells Erik that it wasn't her fault, but his. He quickly relents. And in general, it's only perfectly rational that he's dedicated his life to hunting down and brutally killing a series of individuals, to the point that he not only believes that these men are irredeemable, but that ALL humans are essentially just as bad, and hate mutants for what they are, secretly or openly. He's certainly not to blame for both his own descent into madness, nor single-handedly almost causing WWIII after just having prevented it. Given exactly WHO is responsible for his descent is a bit more valid of a Freudian Excuse than usual, even if it ends up with him being Not So Different, up to the point of agreeing with the primary target of his hunt.
- Sean from The Social Network particularly has this problem. He blamed the Winklevii and/or Manningham for "planting" the coke and calling the cops for catching him with underage interns. He also doesn't seem to get how record companies would be pissed to see you take money away from them, chalking it up to the companies not having a sense of humor.
- The Richest Cat In The World: Oscar Kohlmeyer left the bulk of his estate (five million dollars) to his cat while his nephew got only twenty-five thousand dollars and only if he didn't contest the will. The nephew's greedy wife forced her Henpecked Husband to contest and, after they lost the case, she blamed him for losing the twenty-five thousand dollars.
- Pick a film. ANY film by Uwe Boll. Listen to the DVD Commentary. He never places the movies' failures on himself but rather on petty grievances from the actors. i.e. Blaming the failure of Alone in the Dark (2005) to actress Tara Reid refusing to show her breasts on screen.
- At the end RoboCop 2, after Robocop's intended successor has killed hundreds of people and injured thousands, Johnson from OCP suggests blaming Dr. Faxx. It's a twisted example in that it actually was her fault, but OCP brought her in and her superiors turned a blind eye to what she was doing while her subordinates were too afraid to challenge her.
- Major Frank Burns in the movie, M*A*S*H, was a terrible doctor and would often have patients die on him, causing him to claim it was God's will, or someone else's fault. In the case we see in the movie, he placed the blame on Private Boone for bringing the wrong instrument (in actuality, the patient died before Boone even got back). Even so, poor Boone was reduced to tears thinking he killed him, leaving Trapper, who saw what happened, to give Major Burns a well deserved punch.
- In Cliffhanger... well, let's just repeat what's on the film's page: "Oh sure, Hal, it was Gabe's fault you brought your girlfriend, who had no experience in climbing whatsoever, on a climbing trip. Or never bothered to check her harness, and assured her it was safe to go across a cliff. Oh, but I'm sure you could've saved her when the harness failed when she was halfway across with little to no chance of reaching her or being able to pull her up. But hey, Gabe at least bothering to try was certainly something to blame him for. Yeah, great reasoning pal."
- How the Grinch Stole Christmas!: After the Grinch steals their Christmas, Augustus blames Cindy Lou for inviting the Grinch to their Whobilation, when it was his own taunts that drove the Grinch to do so in the first place.
- Jurassic Park: In Michael Crichton's novel, Hammond note has a long internal monologue in which he blames everyone except himself for the disaster. Then he gets eaten.
- Gennaro, too, is a largely irresponsible man who has allowed significant monetary investment in a project he did very little checking on, under a man (Hammond) he knew to be unsavory, and yet whenever something goes wrong he's the first one to start bitching at someone else. Eventually Grant calls him on it by slamming him into a wall and spitting it all into his face.
- In The Magicians, Emily Greenstreet disfigures herself while trying to alter her face with magic; when her boyfriend (who she'd dumped for one of the professors, by the way) tries to help, he loses control of a spell due to being too upset to concentrate and dies in the Magic Misfire. When Quentin meets Emily late in the novel, she blames magic for the disaster, claims magic is the source of all the sorrows in her life and Quentin's life, and accuses all of her fellow magicians of being nuclear bombs waiting to go off. For added hypocriisy, her day job requires magic performed by said nuclear bombs to disguise the fact that she does absolutely nothing.
- In John C. Wright's The Golden Age, the basic stance of the cacophiles. Particularly, they blame their parents for not dying and thus shutting them out of an inheritance.
- The Napoleon character does this in The Great Divorce: "It was Soult's fault. It was Ney's fault. It was Josephine's fault. It was the fault of the English. It was the fault of the Russians."
- Which is captures in a nutshell the way Napoleon blamed all his defeats and failures on his subordinates in the memoirs he dictated to his companions Las Cases, Montholon and Gourgaud on St. Helena. Even those of his admirers who take that at face value have to point out that it generally was Napoleon himself who appointed those subordinates and put them in the position where they allegedly did so much damage.
- This is also a hallmark of a great many memoirs written by generals and politicians. For instance, after World War 2, a number of German generals etc. tended to blame Hitler for their own defeats and would of course deny any involvement of the Wehrmacht in war crimes.
- Very common in the The Railway Series. Because the Rev Awdry didn't want to make railwaymen look foolish, the locomotive characters are usually blamed for whatever goes wrong on the railway. Unfortunately, by doing this, the railwaymen look not only foolish, but get off scot-free with endangering lives.
- In Percy and the Trousers, Percy crashes into some luggage, but the porters were just as much to blame for not keeping an eye on the track.
- In Paint Pots & Queens, the painter loses his footing, spilling his paint, and he blames Henry.
- In The Twin Engines, The Fat Controller rips into the twins for accidents that aren't even their fault (for Donald, crashing to a signalbox and for Douglas, being late due to The Spiteful Brake Van putting on his brakes).
- In Thomas Comes To Breakfast, The Fat Controller blames Thomas for crashing a stationmaster's house, even if it was the cleaner fiddling with his controls.
- Also in Percy's Predicament, The trucks cause Percy to crash to a brake van, his driver and Fireman can't stop him in time and the Fat Controller still blames Percy.
- In Wrong Road, The Fat Controller blames Gordon for the mix up, even though it was the fireman's fault for starting the train before everything was ready.
- In Buffer Bashing, Donald crashes into some buffers, but the Fat Controller knew it wasn't his fault since he couldn't stop in time. But when Douglas does the same, The Fat Controller scolds him.
- In Spock's World, the Big Bad, Spock's former fiancee, seems to have this problem. "My mate took a suicidal risk because my mate thought that my constant brooding about my last encounter with you was romantic? Obviously, it's all your fault."
- Aliens Ate My Homework: A bully tries to beat up Rod, but aliens super-accelerate the intended victim so he dodges. The bully breaks his hand on the hard surface behind Rod, and later gets his father to sue Rod's family for damages. Later, fortunately, when the bullies' ringleader, a disguised evil alien, is brought to justice, the alien's "father" confronts the bully and his father with the true story.
- The Mass Effect EU book Ascension had an exiled quarian cooperate with Cerberus as revenge for (as he thought) his people banishing him from the Flotilla for no reason. This same quarian had tried to sell his people to the Collectors.
- The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde: Even when writing his final letter, Jekyll refers to Hyde (mostly) in the third person, insisting Hyde's actions were not his actions. "[E]ven now I can scarce grant that I committed [them]."
- Oblomov is completely unable to change his life by himself; when he gets unhappy he decides to blame Sachar instead. Now Sachar is a Jerk Ass and whatnot, but still Mis-blamed.
- In Death series: A number of the villains will always blame everyone but themselves when something goes wrong. Divided In Death had Dr. Mira explicitly telling Eve that Blair Bissel refuses to blame himself and that he has to blame someone else for everything going wrong for him.
- Lolita: Humbert certainly qualifies. The entire book is basically his attempt to convince a jury that he is not responsible for the events of the book.
- Sisterhood Series by Fern Michaels: A number of villains essentially go around with this attitude. Senator Webster in Payback stands out with refusing to accept the blame for having multiple affairs, and then feebly trying to blame his wife Julia Webster for giving him AIDS. She had to shove the evidence in his face and spell out that recklessly having sex with women caused him to get AIDS, and he passed it on to her, plain and simple! Owen Orzell AKA Jody Jumper in Home Free actually averts or defies the trope by coming out and admitting that he is responsible for what he has done and nobody else.
- In Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand, this trope is played straight by every single villain.
- Jaime Lannister from A Song of Ice and Fire, likable though he is, has a pretty bad case of this. It gets a bit better with time.
- Cersei also has this problem. And unlike Jaime she gets worse. After Joffrey's death, she becomes insanely paranoid and thinks that everything bad happening in Westeros is a conspiracy against her masterminded by her hated brother Tyrion. Even when she confesses her sins in A Dance with Dragons she blames other people for "driving" her into sin.
- Ring Lardner's novel "You Know Me Al" is a collection of letters from a young pitcher trying to break into the big leagues. Whenever he writes about one of his poor pitching performances, he starts by saying that he always takes responsibility for his failings (usually with a Title Drop), and then immediately blames everyone else on the team for his loss.
- The bully ringleader in Let the Right One In, Johnny, feels this way towards the protagonist, Oskar, smashing him in the head with a piece of wood... while he and a lackey were throwing him into a frozen lake. He retaliates by holding Oskar's head in the path of an oncoming train. Oskar in turn retaliates by burning the bullies' school desks. Unfortunately, the scrapbook with Johnny and his older brother Jimmy's only photos of their father is in his desk. They respond by nearly drowning him, then preparing to cut out his eye. Never once does Johnny acknowledge his horrible treatment of Oskar which drove him to this.
- The Onion's Jean Teasdale is an odd example since she does this not out of egotism but out of her complete lack of understanding about how the real world works, even when the evidence is right in front of her face. She got fired for browsing eBay instead of working, but she insists it's because the boss just didn't like her. In a more extreme example, another article has her talk about how a local magazine called her the worst columnist ever, and she proceeds to completely ignore the reasons they give (which she demonstrates perfectly in that very article) and conclude that they can't handle her sassy, in-your-face style.
- In the book of Genesis after Adam and Eve eat from the tree, God finds them hiding under a bush, and he asks what happened. Instead of fessing up, Adam blames Eve for their sin, and Eve blames the serpent. Good thing God couldn't see through that one...
- It's actually worse than that; Adam does blame Eve, but does so in a way that implies that God should ultimately take the responsibility: "The woman you put here with me — she gave me the fruit, and I ate it."
- Interestingly contrasted with King David, who never blamed Bathsheba for his having an affair with her or sending her husband Uriah to die on the front lines to keep him from knowing about it, but openly confessed, "I have sinned against the Lord" when Nathan the prophet revealed that God knew about the affair and was now going to take action against him.
- In Artemis Fowl: The Last Guardian, Opal Koboi has found a way to blame her arch-rival Foaly for her decision to implant a human pituitary gland in her skull in an attempt to make her body generate more growth hormone, which had the side effect of sapping her magic. The logic involved in her conclusion isn't shown, but is probably of the insane troll variety.
- The title character of Tom Gleisner's Warwick Todd books is an Australian cricketer who writes memoirs of his tours with a fictionalised version of the real Australian cricket team. He blames the team's and his own failures on anyone but himself. One subversion involved Todd not joining in on an appeal for a caught behind. "My fault, no question. When Heals goes up, everyone goes up". If you're not from a cricketing nation, you have no idea what you just read.
- The title character of The Picture of Dorian Gray is never able to hold himself accountable for his sinful actions. When Sibyl commits suicide, Dorian Gray views her death as a tragic drama in order to avoid responsibility. He even blames Basil for what he has become, and kills him. From Dorian's perspective, it was the knife that killed Basil, leaving Dorian himself blameless.
- The unnamed student in Decision Of Fate blames his professor for his drug use. His reason? The professor gave an assignment that said the student was supposed to do something he had never done before. Somehow, it completely escapes him that not a single word was said about trying drugs.
- The protagonist of Klaus Mann's Mephisto, Hendrik Hoefgen, is a German theater actor who uses Nazi connections to advance his career. Though he uses this influence to imprison his ex-girlfriend and murder his primary rival, Hoefgen is dumbfounded when his friends, wife and colleagues disgustedly desert him. The book's concluding line has Hoefgen wondering "What do they expect of me? After all, I am just an actor."
- Bianca from The Dresden Files has this pretty hard. In Storm Front, the title character comes to talk to her, and she attacks him. After he defends himself and leaves, she's emotionally out of control to the point that she kills her lover/slave. And that's entirely Dresden's fault because he dared to defend himself. In Grave Peril she has the Red Court trick Dresden into an outright war because it was his fault that the woman died. Not Bianca's fault for actually killing the woman. It was Dresden's fault for making her angry by defending himself.
- The Bosses in Clocks that Don't Tick refuse to accept any responsibility for the state of the world despite, well, everything.
- The main villain in Stephen King's Mr. Mercedes is this. A hateful psychopath with a very disturbing relationship with his alcoholic mother, Brady Hartsfield opens the book by driving the titular Mercedes through a crowd in a spree killing, then attempts to further get his jollies by driving people close to the case to suicide through manipulation. Unfortunately, he greatly underestimates Detective Hodges, the book's main character and the now-retired detective who was on said case until he retired. Instead of pushing him over the edge, Hodges is reinvigorated and begins investigating the case on his own, turning the manipulation game around and driving Brady into a mad rage. Brady decided to try and regain the advantage by surreptitiously poisoning the dog that belongs to the family of Jerome, a young man who helps Detective Hodges, which he figures Hodges will grasp as being done by him. Unfortunately, his drunken mother gets into the poisoned hamburger and makes herself a fatal meal. Whose fault is this? Detective Hodges, of course.
- Honor Harrington:
- Captain Lord Pavel Young is a poster child for the Aristocrats Are Evil trope and assumes that everything bad that happens to him is the fault of other people because, for him, It's All About Me. Usually, the target of his blame is Honor herself (whom he never calls by name, always "that bitch"). It starts with his receiving a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown by Honor in their academy days when he tried to rape her. Years later, he leaves Honor horribly understaffed at Basilisk Station but blames her when she proves far more effective than he himself ever so much as tried to be.
- This is a large part of the reason the situation with the Solarian League escalates as far as it does in the later books. The League's governing bureaucracy fears that openly admitting it was in the wrong with regards to incidents where Solarian naval officers attacked Manticoran ships would be seen as a sign of weakness the systems they oppress in the Verge would capitalize on. This leaves them compelled to fight what is, in many ways, a hopeless war against the far more technologically advanced Manticore, and forces Manticore to have to fight an enemy that won't even consider a peaceful resolution.
- On a personal level, the Solarian Battle Fleet Admiral who started this conflict, Josef Byng, is shown in his own thoughts trying to justify to himself his panicked destruction of three Manticoran ships that were not threat to him while also trying to figure out how to pin the blame elsewhere.
- Almost every single reality based competitive show will have this when teamwork is involved. If a team loses, everyone is quick to blame each other and not themselves.
- Being Human: Mitchell takes this position over the Box Tunnel Massacre when he is confronted with his victims. First he blames Lucy for betraying him, then Daisy for egging him on. When Lia pushes him far enough, he finally takes responsibility and admits that he doesn't deserve forgiveness.
- Jimmy McNulty from The Wire is a Cowboy Cop with Chronic Backstabbing Disorder; nonetheless, "What the fuck did I do?" is practically his Catch Phrase.
- On The Tudors, this is one of Henry VIII's defining character traits. If he no longer loves his wife, it's her fault (and she probably tricked him into marrying her in the first place). If he can't get a divorce from his wife, it's Cardinal Wolsey's fault. If his unborn son was deformed, it was his wife's fault. If he doesn't like Anne of Cleves, it's Cromwell's fault. If he married a woman who wasn't a virgin before she met him (even though she was introduced to him as his mistress), it's the other man's fault. If he comes to regret banishing Wolsey and executing Cromwell, it's the Privy Council's fault. And so on and so forth.
- ER's Kerry Weaver, rarely, if ever, took any responsibility for the contentious relationship that she had with the rest of the staff, despite the strict, patronizing way she tended to treat nearly everyone. The worst example might be when she not only allowed, but actively schemed to make two doctors take the full blame for the death of a patient, knowing full well that as their supervisor, she should have been present to correct their mistakes. When one of the doctors finally calls her on this, not only does she display no remorse for her actions, she seems to think she was completely justified in what she did because of the others errors.
- Amy Duncan from Good Luck Charlie exemplifies this trope in "Amy Needs A Shower," when she arranges her own baby shower, badmouths the people she invited within earshot of Charlie who then repeats what she said about them to their faces, and when this fails to end well blithely says "It's nobody's fault." Twice. Er, actually it's your fault, Amy.
- On Moesha, her stepmother signed her up for modeling classes without telling her. Her father asked Moesha as a personal favor to keep peace to go along with it. She has fun at first, but finds both her discipline and her patience with the stepmom trying to live a modeling career through her runs out. When she angrily backs out of going along with this any further, the stepmother asks why Moesha ever asked her to sign her up. Flabergasted, Moesha reminds her she *never* asked for any of this, to which Step Mom sarcastically treats her as being ungrateful. Now, could this have been avoided if Dad had just cut it off to start? Maybe. But now he steps in and plays peacemaker, looking good for doing so. Combines this trope with Karma Houdini, to say the least.
- In Fresh Meat, Josie has shades of this, particularly in the episode where she breaks another girl's arm in a fit of jealousy:
Josie: We had to take her to the hospital because her arm got broken.
Kingsley: How did her arm get broken?
Sabine: Josie broke her arm.
Kingsley: Why did you break her arm?
Josie: I didn't break her arm! I used her own weight against her, so in a way, she broke her own arm.
Kingsley: She broke her own arm?
Vod: No, Josie broke her arm.
Josie: No, I was doing self-defense on her. Sabine showed me, so Sabine must have shown me wrong.
Sabine: You were aggressive. I told you not to be aggressive.
Josie: Anyway, Heather attacked me, I defended myself, and her arm got broken.
Vod: Defense is the best form of attack.
Josie: I didn't attack. I did defense. Because defense is the best form of defense.
Kingsley: How bad is it?
Vod: Oh, it's really bad. Monster mash, mate.
Josie: Yes, but, you know what they say: Broken bones may break my bones, but they will never hurt me!
Sabine: They don't say that because it's not true. And doesn't make sense.
- In Roseanne, when Roseanne confronts her mother Bev over the latter's alcoholism, Bev goes on a rant, blaming everyone around her for her problems. Roseanne shoots back "Well, that's good, Mom. The first step is admitting that everyone else has a problem." Not that Roseanne is exactly immune from this trope herself...
- In Babylon 5, Centauri ambassador Londo Mollari has problems apologizing, stemming in part from the fact that he indirectly caused the deaths of millions as a result of his political maneuverings. However, because the dead were Narns, and to most of Londo's people Narns are seen as vile, aggressive, uncivilized animals, he compensates for his private shame by being more aggressively anti-Narn in public. Even after his conscience catches up with him and he uses his influence to free Narn, he makes up excuses that it was for the good of the Centauri, and had nothing to do with feeling sorry for the Narns. After that, it takes him a year before he can apologize to anyone about what he did. When he finally does, he admits, "I've never apologized for anything in my life." He was just too prideful and ashamed to admit that he was sorry, even to himself.
- JAG: Lt. Williams in "Desert Son" is incapable of taking responsibility for his own actions. His dying words are "Why me?", unable to accept that everything that has happened to him has been his own doing.
- In episode 8 of The Musketeers, the Red Guard were quick to pin the blame of their captain's death on the Musketeers for not helping them, despite the Musketeers warning them that the prisoner Labarge wasn't to be taken lightly and it was the resulting fight between Labarge and the Red Guard that led to a Guard accidentally killing the captain.
- Liv and Maddie: Maddie says she can't get a driver's license because the driving school discriminates against people who can't turn left.
- An early Straylight Run demo includes a track called "It's Everyone's Fault But Mine". Which, given its subject matter (the singer's estrangement from his old band, Taking Back Sunday), might be a fairly accurate title.
- This is a common criticism of female pop singers known for breakup songs, where they'll release a dozen singles about kicking a no-good man to the curb, but never one about their own regrets or wrongdoings in a relationship. These songs do exist, but they're never released as singles ("Back to December" by Taylor Swift comes to mind), since women showing emotional weakness has become something of a taboo in pop music.
- The song "Gangsta Rap Made Me Do It" by Ice Cube addresses this in its subject matter, which is about people blaming the bad things they do in life on rap music rather than out of personal choice.
- In one episode of Im Sorry I Havent A Clue, Jeremy Hardy makes a joke which could be seen as offensive. Tim Brooke-Taylor immediately follows it with the comment "That was Jeremy Hardy who said that..." Moments later, Tim makes a joke which is groaned by the audience and follows it, again, with "That was Jeremy Hardy who said that..."
- And in another episode, Tim makes a joke which gets a mixed reaction, before saying "Oh, you shouldn't say that. Shush, Jeremy." note
- In Paranoia, the mission debriefing tends to devolve into everyone doing this at once.
- More than "tends," it's totally expected and even encouraged. The official Mission Report form (included in the rulebook) has a series of yes/no checkboxes. One of them is "Did you accuse a fellow team member of being a traitor? If no, explain:_______."
- Part of the history of Wilson's Hussars in BattleTech. Their second commander is panicky, selfish, cowardly, and horribly incompetent; in other words, everything that a mercenary 'Mech commander shouldn't be. When he panicked in the middle of a bad situation and called for their Drop Ship to pull him out, it was shot down and crashed on his lance's position. Miraculously he survived, blaming everyone but himself for the string of bad choices that led to the losses. It earns him a double PPC shot in the back from the man who would be the unit's much more reasonable and much better liked but long-suffering third commander.
- When Clan Steel Viper joins the invasion of the Inner Sphere they try to "enlighten" the people of the IS of their Clan ways, initially no one buys it. They mostly blame Clan Jade Falcon on why the IS don't like them, but in truth its because of the Steel Vipers low view of freebirths.
- Into the Woods has a song named "Your Fault", which involves all the 'heroes' placing the blame for the Darker and Edgier second act on each other. (See here). The witch proceeds to call all of them out on their behavior in a Crowning Moment of Awesome The Reason You Suck Song, particularly after they tried blaming her for everything that happened.
- In Notre Dame De Paris, Phoebus's song Je Reviens Vers Toi (To get back to you) is this song in trope form, he tells his fiance, that the gypsy bewitched him into cheating on her, that she only wanted his money and that he's a changed man, as he flirts with temptation.
- Joe Keller of All My Sons. Yeah, people might have been shopping faulty parts to the military in World War II for the contract money, but Joe not only did it knowingly, he then pinned the crime on Steve Deever, his best friend and business partner, by pretending he had been sick the day the parts were shipped out when his greed gets 21 pilots killed. Said friend gets life in prison and Joe gets off, retaining the parts business for himself. Not only this but it also causes Steve's own family to turn against him, and Joe has no problem with letting everyone believe he was both a hero who uncovered Steve's incompetence and an innocent victim who had conveniently been sick at home when he wasn't. And he allows this to go on for years. When the truth comes out, he's not very remorseful about it and tries to justify his actions and get out of it as being "for the family" and that lots of others were doing it at the time, so if his son Chris was going to turn him to the police he might as well turn over everyone else who did it. Finally, when Chris confronts him with the suicide note Larry, his other son, wrote because he couldn't have the shame of what his father did, he goes into the house as if to get his coat so he can be taken into the police to atone for what he did... where he promptly shoots himself in the head just so he wouldn't have to go to jail and be exposed for what he did, or have to deal with the fact his son's death was his fault.
- Zachary Hale Comstock, the Big Bad of Bioshock Infinite has severe trouble facing his own guilt, to the point that this is arguably his most defining trait. He only exists because he's a version of the main character that accepted baptism and created a new identity to bury his guilt over Wounded Knee. Driving the point home further, Burial at Sea features an alternate Comstock who accidentally killed Elizabeth when he tried to take her from her own world, and then had the Luteces move him to another world so that he could escape his guilt over that, too.
Rosalind Lutece: Comstock was never one to own up to his errors, was he, brother?
Robert Lutece: Never comfortable with the choices he made.
Rosalind: Always seeking someone else's life to claim as his own.
- Stross from Dead Space 2. He was unintentionally responsible for the death of his wife, Alexis, and their son. Unable to accept it, the Marker slowly drives Stross more and more insane as time goes on, eventually becoming actively antagonistic and trying to kill Isaac and Ellie. It's not that Stross wants to hurt them, it's just that Stross wants someone, anyone, to validate what he's seeing and tell him his family's deaths wasn't his fault, which is why he listens to what the symbols from the Marker are telling him.
- Dynasty Warriors 4. Dong Zhuo's campaign. If Lu Bu defeats Diao Chan in the final act of the campaign. "Why did you take Diao Chan into battle. You are the one that killed Diao Chan!"
- Part of Siegfried's backstory in Soul Calibur: He and his gang attacked a band of knights, returning from a campaign, with the intention of robbing them. Siegfried beheaded the Knight's commander and held his severed head up to gloat. It turned out to be his own father. His mind became so warped that he psychologically convinced himself that someone else killed him. Some of his endings in the games show him taking responsibility for this.
- In Scarface: The World is Yours, some of the truly hilarious insults Tony can scream at pedestrians as he runs them over include "You fucked up my grill, you stupid fuck!", "Hey! You cracked my fucking windshield, man!", and "Next time maybe you look both ways, you fuck!"
- Done twice in Episode 3 of Phantasy Star Universe. First the Parum refugees hate the GUARDIANS because of the GUARDIANS Colony crash-landing on Parum, which killed thousands and left the survivors homeless with hardly any means to survive. Then the New Rogues leader, Tylor refuses to work with the GUARDIANS because they did nothing while the SEED-Virus was unleashed on Beasts. Turning them into SEED-forms which lead them to be purified. Both events were beyond the control of the GUARDIANS.
- Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door: Beldam twice blames Vivian for losing something that she'd earlier insisted on hanging onto herself because Vivian "couldn't be trusted with something so important". After the second time, Vivian gets fed up with Beldam's mistreatment and joins forces with Mario.
- God of War has this going on on both sides. Kratos relentlessly rages against everyone and their grandmother for tricking him into brutally murdering everything in sight at the drop of a hat while the gods refuse to admit their culpability in actually manipulating Kratos in the first place, deceiving him about the rewards for following their orders and generally being the jerkasses they've always been, resulting in most them having the crap murdered out of them.
- In both Persona 3 and Persona 4, each bad guy before the final Cosmic Horror/Knight Templar-goddess boss says something to the effect of "If this all happened because the world is a crappy place, then it's all your fault for making it this way, isn't it?", completely ignoring the fact that 1) Nyx was prematurely summoned because the Kirijo Group screwed with the Arcana Shadows, namely Death and 2) Adachi's murder spree helped convince Izanami that her Assimilation Plot was the right idea. Takaya truly believes this is the reason and doesn't care either way; Adachi is blaming you because you have him cornered, and he's been partially possessed by Izanami's right-hand man at the time.
- Tales of the Abyss:
- The main issue the party has with Luke unwittingly destroying Akzeriuth is his refusal to accept responsibility for it. Once he realizes that he is responsible and vows to change himself and make amends, the party begins to forgive him, some more quickly than others. After they've had time to cool down and think things over, the team actually realizes that unlike Luke, they were more aware of the situation and in a better position to stop it. That's why they decide to give him a second chance. By the time the team is all together again, the only person who's blaming him for "the incident" is Luke himself.
- There is also a sidequest involving a character named Casim, who tries to use a forbidden fonic art. Jade and Tear manage to stop him from causing an explosion, but as a side affect, Casim loses his eyesight. Casim blames Jade for not stopping him in the first place. Thankfully, Luke sets him straight with punch in the face.
- Another example that's played entirely for laughs: one skit that's activated by sleeping at the inn in Daath has Jade say that Anise is pretty thin, flat, Luke adds. Anise says "Oh, just...just shut up! It's not all about size, you know! Big blobs of fat like that'll just droop down and look ugly before you even hit thirty!", just as Tear walks in. She leaves in a huff. Jade and Anise scold Luke for hurting Tear's feelings to which Luke bellows "There is no way in hell that this is my fault!"
- In The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, Tatl stops you from following the Skull Kid in the beginning, and as a result gets left behind by him. She immediately blames Link for it.
- Maribel from Dragon Quest VII is known to berate the hero for getting her stuck in trouble with him, even though she forced her way along in the first place!
- James Tobin is just made up of this trope In the 1st Degree. He is charged with murder and grand theft. If you ask the right questions, then Tobin and his lawyer Charleston will try to make a story in which Tobin admits a number of things Yvonne, Simon, and Ruby said and tries to spin it so it was all the murder victim Zack's idea, and Tobin was just the poor guy who was dragged into it against his will. Even at that point, he still obeys this trope. Fortunately, you, as the prosecutor Granger, get to pick apart the details of his new story and have him lose his cool at a couple points. If you do it right, you then get to watch Tobin have a total meltdown right there in the courtroom and reveal a little too much information. If that happens, then you have won the game.
- G0-T0 of Knights of the Old Republic II gives the PC several repeated What the Hell, Hero? speeches over the destruction of Peragus mining facility (as well as, well, Peragus) — even though the PCs' presence on Peragus was entirely the result of being abducted by G0-T0's bounty hunter, who also gratuitously slaughtered all of the facility's personnel before the PC even came to. And said slaughter, along with keeping the PC drugged, delays the escape long enough for the Sith to catch up, and destroy Peragus in the confrontation.
- Professor Kuriakin in Fahrenheit tells Lucas Kane that the Oracle must never kill directly. Instead, he possesses a random proxy to commit the murder.
- Portal 2:
- By the time of the final battle, Wheatley's incompetent management has left the Enrichment Centre on the brink of self-destruction. Wheatley rants at Chell for running off with Glados after he "reluctantly" assumed power, when in reality he jumped at the opportunity to take over and then tried to kill them. He even claims that there's nothing wrong with the facility, and all the alarms and warnings going off are just a conspiracy by the two of them trying to sabotage him, even as his lair starts to catch fire and the ceiling collapses around him.
- After the final fight, Wheatley finally realizes he screwed up and admits to the camera that if he could see Chell again, he would apologize.
- GLaDOS also shows signs of this, from the incinerator trap on through Portal 2. She acts like her destruction by Chell was an act of unprovoked aggression, even though she was blatantly trying to kill her, and treats Chell like a violent, ungrateful lunatic lashing out at the people trying to help her.
- Cave Johnson. He blames Black Mesa and life for his company's failure, completely ignoring the fact that his continued abuse of ethics and ridiculous spending was what really got it done.
- A rather dark example in Spec Ops: The Line. After committing numerous atrocities in Dubai, Walker develops a Dissociative Personality Disorder and starts hallucinating an imaginary colonel Konrad over the radio, on who he blames all the things that he himself has done, even though the real Konrad committed suicide quite some time ago after he couldn't deal with the consequences of his own actions. Even when confronted with Konrad's corpse Walker can still disbelieve that he is hallucinating by shooting the hallucination.
Konrad: It takes a strong man to deny what's right in front of him.
- In Bully, the nerds' leader Earnest hires Jimmy to take some dirty pictures of the head cheerleader as part of his plan for revenge against the jocks. Later, after he blows the pictures up to poster size and posts them all over town, an angry mob of jocks storm his hideout. Gripped with panic, he quickly blames Jimmy for taking the pictures, even though he was the one who asked for them. This happens all through the game. Everything bad that ever happens is Jimmy's fault.
- Played with in Batman: Arkham City. The Joker seems to partially blame his impending death from the poisonous side-effects of the Titan Super Serum on Batman, because he "left [him] to die" after their climactic battle at the end of the first game. He then immediately acknowledges that Batman probably doesn't remember it that way, and then just moves on with trying to constructively fix the problem without wasting any more time. Given that the Joker is the Trope Namer for Multiple-Choice Past, it is unclear whether he truly thinks he remembers Batman leaving him to die, or if he's just screwing around (and possibly Lampshade Hanging the villain's tendency to use this trope).
- Also occurs when he gives his origin story to Hugo Strange (it's the same story from The Killing Joke). Strange points out the Joker has many different versions of his origin, and the only consistent thing is that he blames Batman for his condition in every one.
- A more clear-cut example happens during the ending when Joker stabs Batman, causing him to drop the cure. His last hope for survival lost, Joker bitterly asks Batman if he's happy now, as if Batman had done it on purpose.
- Though Mr. Freeze is treated sympathetically overall, Hugo Strange (fairly accurately) accuses him of this. Though he is fundamentally well-intentioned, Freeze's current condition and supervillain career- and his wife Nora's present state- is at least partly grounded in his inability to admit to his mistakes, misdeeds or personal flaws. This is also demonstrated during your boss fight with him; there are breakable statues of Nora scattered around the room, and if Mr. Freeze accidently destroys one while shooting at you, he'll claim that you made him do it.
- Likewise with the Penguin and his backstory who constantly blames the Wayne family for financially ruining his family. When in truth it was his own decisions that lead him down his path.
- In Ghost Trick, Yomiel blames everyone but himself for having a hand in his death. Yes, his vendetta against Detectives Jowd and Cabanela are kind of understandable, seeing as they arrested him, subjected him to merciless interrogation, and were going to shoot him when he tried to escape, all while he was innocent. But then, he also blames Lynn, who was just a little kid playing in the park when he was being chased by the police, and who only was involved in the situation because he chose to take her hostage. Which he blamed her for, by simple fact that he wouldn't have thought to take a hostage if she hadn't been there! It is played with later, as Yomiel admits that he knows Lynn was innocent, and knows that he screwed up his life.
- In Harvest Moon: The Tale Of Two Towns, the cooking competitions are Serious Business. If you don't take part yourself, you can choose to just cheer your town's cooking team on. If you're a resident of Bluebell and the team loses, Jessica will say "If you'd been a bit more supportive we..." but she stops herself before finishing. Grady will also claim that the cooking team lost because you weren't cheering properly, but he apologies right away.
- Averted with Gray Mann of Team Fortress 2. While he seethes at the fact all his robots are imbeciles, he admits it's his fault for designing them, and claims that the "hailing circuit" was his one moment of weakness. The new Mecha-Engineers are where he once again shows he's ultimately Dangerously Genre Savvy.
- Any game that has a focus on team gameplay (or, more often, just team gameplay in theory) will always have someone falling into this trope whenever they screw up and costs the team the win. Crosses with Small Name, Big Ego if they promptly take all the credit for when their team actually wins.
- Tomb Raider (2013): After Alex's death, Reyes blames Lara for failing to save him, apparently forgetting that she was the one who let Alex go off on his own in the first place.
- Starscream of Transformers: Fall of Cybertron despite being the main reason for the loss of a large amount of Decepticon forces and the failure of a huge operation, he blames his soldiers, the Combaticons (who were the ones who bailed said operation out and cleaned up after Starscream) and tosses them into jail for insubordination when they protest.
- Megatron considers Cybertron's state of shutdown all Optimus's fault, saying that he's stopped him from returning Cybertron to its natural state when he stopped the Core's corruption from Dark Energon. Already an absurd statement which is even more absurd when Dark Energon literally is Unicron's blood.
- The krogan in the Mass Effect series have this as a pretty big part of their species' feelings. They blame the Citadel races exclusively for them being effectively neutered into neutral population growth even after helping with the rachni, despite the fact that the krogan were aggressively expanding, overrunning the galaxy, and eventually started to "colonize" worlds that were already under the ownership of another species, then outright daring the Citadel races to take their worlds back. If he survives Virmire in the first game, Wrex realizes that the genophage also worked as a Break the Haughty for the krogan, and he acts as a moderating influence on them when he becomes their leader in the third game. This in stark contrast to Wreav, the replacement in that case, who outright admits that as soon as the Reapers are defeated he's going to raise an army of krogan and take revenge on the galaxy.
- The quarian race also applies. They despise the geth for driving them off their homeworld, apparently ignoring the fact that the only reason the geth did that was because the quarians were trying to wipe them out. If Shepard points this out to Tali in the first game, she claims that the quarians had no choice, which the third game shows is complete bullshit. Not only did the quarians provoke conflict with the completely docile and friendly geth, but the old quarian government killed off any quarians who spoke out against this state-ordered genocide. In the third game, this leads to the Flotilla going into an idiotic war with the geth thanks to one warmonger of an admiral who refuses to accept that he may be making a mistake. At that point Tali has gone through Character Development and realizes what a bunch of hypocrites/idiots the admirals are.
- Liara has a small moment near the end of Lair of the Shadow Broker if the player chooses a certain dialogue option. She criticizes Kaidan/Ashley for not trusting Shepard after the latter was brought Back from the Dead by a known terrorist organization, conveniently leaving out the part where she was the one who left them in the dark on the subject, which allowed the Illusive Man to poison them with false information.
- In League of Legends, it is common that a player will yell at his teammates in a losing game, then proceed to say that he is the only competent person on said team., even if he is doing the worst and/or hardly contributes and judges solely on his KDA ratio.
- Mega Man Zero: Dr. Weil blames the reploids for causing destruction all the time, but he considers it "the right thing" when he enacts Project Elpis and causes Elf Wars (decimating 90% of reploids and 60% of human population), and then blamed humans for punishing him. He might be right, considering that the humans are basically going vigilante... if not for the fact that the judges are reploids made by Weil himself.
- Scylla Cartier-Wells from Remember Me. While she constantly blames her daughter, Nilin for a car accident that cost her a leg, it was her fault for turning around to talk to her daughter while driving, instead of stopping at the red light just up ahead. While it is true that Nilin was misbehaving before, she wasn't misbehaving for about a minute before the crash, which doesn't justify Scylla's behaviour.
- In Sonic Rivals, Eggman Nega's motive is that the failures of his ancestor, Dr. Eggman, caused the world to refuse to recognize genius, motivating him to travel back in time, and kill his ancestor, erasing his failures and altering his family history. According to Shadow, though, this is just Nega blaming his own failures on the past.
- Lyric, the Big Bad of Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric, blames the other Ancients for his incurable disease, which necessitated his conversion into a cyborg, when in reality, it was his own reckless experiments with the Chaos Crystals that led to him contracting said disease in the first place.
- Ace Attorney — both humorously and seriously.
- In the third case of the first game, Gumshoe blames Phoenix for Edgeworth's state of depression. Maya aggressively counters "If he's depressed it's all your fault for doing sloppy detective work!" this leaves an embarrassed and humbled Gumshoe lost for words.
- Also played seriously in Trials and Tribulations in the final case of the game. Godot blames Phoenix for Mia's death, despite the fact that there was nothing he could do to prevent it. Godot then blames Phoenix for Maya currently being in danger, when it was actually his plan (that he didn't tell Phoenix or Maya about) to save Maya that put her in that situation in the first place, also resulting in the death of her mother. At the end of the game, he admits that it wasn't Phoenix's fault, and that he just needed someone to blame. He also admitted that if he had come to Phoenix in the first place, Misty Fey would still be alive.
- In Justice for All Edgeworth also puts Franziska down for 'Still blaming others when things go wrong''.
- Every time the prosecutors lose, they cut Gumshoe's salary.
- Monokuma from Danganronpa traps 15 students in a school, explains that the only way for them to escape is to start killing each other, and then if they don't, starts providing incentives for them to do so and generally psychologically tortures them until the body count rises. If he's ever called out on this, though, he'll act offended that anyone would even think to make such an accusation. After all, they're the one's doing all the killing.
- Homestar Runner: In the Strong Bad Email "long pants," Strong Bad edits down a lengthy email into nothing like what it was originally (by drawing on his laptop's screen with white-out fluid), then blames the sender when Homestar appears wearing Daisy Dukes and later freaks out over a remark regarding his apparent lack of pants (and The Cheat for covering his screen in white-out fluid).
Original email: Why doesn't homestar ever wear pants? It's kind of creepy how he walks around with no pants on all the time. Anyway, I think you should get him some pants...
Edited email: Why wear pants? Creepy pants all the time get some...
Strong Bad: Noice work, Clanky. You made Homestar go nuts, and you've seriously creeped me out. And how am I supposed to get this crap offa here? Stupid... made-up technology... that I made up... paint pen... The Cheat! Call tech support and tell 'em you broke the Lappy again!
- Red vs. Blue:
- Caboose will often quip "Tucker did it" whenever something bad happens — regardless of who is actually to blame.
- He later fumbled a grenade toss, leading to this immortal exchange:
Washington: That, was the worst throw. Ever. Of all time.
Caboose: Not my fault. Someone put a wall in my way.
- Caboose once switches from gloating to this mid-sentence when things suddenly go south after he stops Tex from curb stomping the Reds and Tucker:
Caboose: I did it! I beat up the girl! I—Not my fault! Not my fault! The computer made suggestions! And the default option was yes!
- In Motherly Scootaloo and its spin-off, although Rain Catcher does admit that he made a few mistakes, he blames Scootaloo for it overall, even though he was the one who gave her the idea, saying it would make her "cool", and pressured her into continuing when she had second thoughts at the last minute.
- Girl Genius:
- In Strays, in Meela's dreams, after a Stalker with a Crush kills the mother, he sees the child and — blames him.
- The Order of the Stick:
- This is Miko Miyazaki's downfall; when the gods strip her of her powers for killing Lord Shojo, she refuses to believe it was her own fault and places the blame on a conspiracy by the Order. When she dies, the spirit of the paladin Soon tells her that her inability to admit responsibility for her deeds is one of the reasons she will die unredeemed.
- Start of Darkness posits that this is Redcloak's major flaw. If he admits that allying with Xykon — let alone making him a lich — was a mistake, then the deaths of all the goblins who aided him in executing "the Plan" will be on his shoulders. During "The Reason You Suck" Speech that Xykon delivers to Redcloak, Xykon bluntly states that Redcloak will never betray him because Xykon is Redcloak's excuse for his inexcusable deeds. Though it turns out that "the Plan" has involved betraying Xykon all along. Redcloak sees Xykon as just a pawn (though he was perfectly willing to let Xykon live until Redcloak killed Right-Eye). A very dangerous pawn who could kill him almost instantly if things go wrong, but a pawn nonetheless.
- When Sabine's buffs start wearing off because she was given them by a low-level caster, she asks herself whose dumb idea it was to hire an apprentice wizard. Just over a hundred strips earlier, guess whose idea it was?
- A comedic example is Mr. Jones and Mr. Rodriguez. Whenever they lose a case, Mr. Jones declares that the trial transcript clearly shows that Mr. Rodriguez was representing their client. Mr. Jones proudly noted his 5-0 record, while lambasting Mr. Rodriguez's 0-147... even though the two always work together and it's the same record.
- Vriska from Homestuck. She initiates a Cycle of Revenge that leaves three of her companions paralyzed from the waist down, blind, and dead, respectively, then she says the other trolls are jerks and weaklings for not wishing to associate with her anymore. She amasses large numbers of pointy dice which she scatters across her floor and never cleans up, and then she says it's just bad luck that she keeps stepping on them. It's only in the last hours of her life that she admits to anyone else that there might be something wrong with her. At one point, she literally demands that Tavros (one of the aforementioned companions) apologize to her for being paralyzed.
- Lark in Mike Bookseller will blame anyone or anything to get out of trouble: "Lark, that's a cardboard display of Henry Winkler".
- In Jack, this is a consistent trait among the damned. None of them will ever admit full guilt in their actions; doing so is actually the first step in getting out of hell, which most of them simply can't take. This is one of the reasons why the damned can't stand angels; easier to blame and hate an authority figure who sent you to hell (even if they didn't) than admit you might actually deserve being where you are.
- In Dominic Deegan, Siegfried's inability to admit guilt for his misdeeds is ultimately what keeps him trapped in hell.
- Ollie from Something Positive considers Davan to be his Arch-Enemy much to Davan's confusion. Ollie claims that Davan is the reason his theater career never took off, when it was Ollie's own mistakes that caused the sponsor (who later gave Davan a job because he was impressed by Davan) to drop Ollie like a hot potato. It's not certain whether Ollie actually believes this or if he's just in severe denial.
- In True Believers Joe Quesadilla tells Spider-Man and Mary Jane that he is breaking up their marriage because he thinks she is the reason people are losing interest in the comics. When Spider-Man points out the problem might be Quesadilla's own writing, he quickly defends himself and says that could not be the case.
- Psionic Minmax in Goblins feels no guilt over the fact that he regularly tortures and kills others in order to advance his plans, because he has convinced himself that the universe itself is to blame if the fundamental rules that govern it allow things like pain and death to occur.
- Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog: Robotnik demotes Coconuts after being tricked by Sonic, despite Coconuts not being around when it happened. "I'M the boss! I can blame whoever I want!"
- The Buzz Lightyear of Star Command episode "Plasma Monster" has Mira and XR building a really big gun, which they then use to shoot a laser at the monster of the episode's title. The conversation that follows:
Mira: Hate to pat myself on the back, but how about that laser shot?
XR: We fried that monster but good! Ha ha!
Petra: You idiot! That monster is my boyfriend! (pushes XR down)
XR: (to Mira) You idiot! That monster was her boyfriend!
- Codename: Kids Next Door:
- This was Numbuh 86's beef in her introduction episode, going hand-in-hand with her Drill Sergeant Nasty and Straw Feminist persona. She constantly blames Sector V (well, the men of Sector V) for everything going wrong in the mission despite the fact it was her overzealousness that hampered their efforts. Thankfully karma stepped in at the end of the episode when she finds out she inadvertently screwed up an undercover mission of another operative (a girl operative at that, and one of the highest ranking ones) and harshly gets chewed out for it.
- When the Delightful Children have acquired the 4th flavor ice cream, they decide to add sprinkles to it. Numbuh Five warns them not to do it, saying it's wrong to add topping to good ice cream. They ignore her and add it, they end up causing the the cave they're in to collapse, they blame Numbuh Five for tricking them even though she warned them.
- Numbuh Five's rival, Heinrich, constantly does this whenever something bad happens to him through his own mistakes. Such as in his first episode where he locates a headpiece but is warned by Numbuh Five that any candy he eats will taste like asparagus if he's greedy. He doesn't believe her, puts on the headpiece, turns into a candy monster (just roll with it) and... the curse goes into effect. To which of course he blames Numbuh Five. When he got turned into a chocolate monster while trying to make real live chocolate bunnies. Nope, not his own actions, it's Numbuh Five's fault. But the real kicker is his last appearance where we learn of the "Guatemala Incident" he keeps sprouting on about. He was actually a girl that got turned into a boy due to a curse that took the best attributes a person cared about (in his-er her case, her beauty) and turned them into caramel. He nearly ate all of them and thought he was stuck like that, thus blaming Numbuh Five for "abandoning" her. Uh... yeah. It's a good thing this brat still has Numbuh Five as a friend after all of this.
- Danny Phantom: Valerie in the Chained Heat episode, though at least Danny has the nerve to call her out on it:
This is all your fault! Danny:
Right, 'cause clearly the maniac
who cuffed us and dragged us in here didn't have anything to do with it!
- Family Guy:
- Fanboy and Chum Chum: Boog and Lenny blame Fanboy and Chum Chum in "Monster in the Mist" for pretending they were the eponymous monster, when in fact it was Boog and Lenny's impaired vision that made them see it. Lenny could be forgiven, though, since his eyesight was handicapped by them.
- The Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends episode "Eddie Monster," in which Eduardo runs away, needs to be listed, because in it, Bloo refuses to accept that it's actually his fault Eduardo ran away, and instead blames the others for it. Even at the end of the episode, he tells the big guy that "I am very sorry for all the mean things... that all the others said about you."
- Futurama does this from time to time.
- Most memorably after Leela is blinded, she crashes the Planet Express ship through the roof of the building. Hermes, having seen everything, turns to Zoidberg and says: "That's coming out of YOUR pay." Zoidberg is reduced to tears. This is normal for the show, as Zoidberg is the primary Butt Monkey.
- Also done by Zapp Brannigan, usually blaming his egregious mistakes on Kif, his beleaguered lieutenant.
Zapp Brannigan: Prepare to take the blame in 3, 2, 1...
- In the episode, "That's Lobstertainment", Calculon grows vengeful against Bender, Zoidberg, and Harold Zoid for having him fund and star in a bomb of a movie that Bender promised would win him an Oscar. As things get worse for them, Bender puts it this way:
Bender: Calculon's gonna' kill us for sure. And it's all everyone else's fault.
- Used for much more serious effect twice in identical instances with two different characters, Demona and Jon Canmore, as each realized (and then immediately denied) the full scope of the consequences of their actions:
- This is one of Demona's defining character traits — she constantly finds a way to blame humans for her problems, even when things are clearly her own fault. It's Lampshaded in the final episode of the "City of Stone" arc, when the Weird Sisters put her in a magically-induced trance and ask a series of questions that reveal that the destruction of her clan — the whole reason she hates humans in the first place — only happened because of her own selfishness. True to form, once the trance is lifted, Demona wastes no time in declaring "None of this was my fault!"
- In an episode of House of Mouse, Donald offers to give Mickey the money he needs to pay the club's rent if he'll let Daisy do an act tonight. Mickey reluctantly accepts the offer, but after Donald reveals to Daisy that he paid Mickey to put her on stage, she declines, saying she wanted to get her act because she would be good at it, not out of monetary reasons. As she walks out, Donald complains to Mickey, "Now see what ya did?"
- Lucius on Jimmy Two-Shoes once destroyed every washroom in Miseryville to torment Jimmy...including his own. He immediately hands the detonator he used to Samy and says "Look what you've done!"
- Justice League:
- The Atom is battling a (relatively) large nano-machine, and jokingly blames it on his assistant.
The Atom: He's bigger than my car now, Katie. Personally, I blame you.
Katie: How can it possibly be my fault?
The Atom: Because otherwise it would be my fault. That can't be right. I'm a professor.
- Just like his comics incarnation, Luthor tends to do this. For instance, when he finds out that he's got radiation poisoning from exposure to Kryptonite, he blames Superman for it, despite Luthor being the one who carries the radioactive rock around in his pocket at all times. And before he blames him Superman even states he is willing to do whatever he could to help him.
Luthor: This is all your [Superman's] FAULT!
- Emil Hamilton justifies siding with Luthor by blaming Superman for threatening his life at the end of Superman: The Animated Series. The reason Superman had threatened him is because Hamilton had initially refused to help save a wounded Supergirl's life due to Superman being treated as a criminal due to him being temporarily Brainwashed and Crazy and was more concerned about saving his own ass than helping someone he'd previously called a friend.
- In King of the Hill, when Hank makes Bobby take up a summer job, which involves him being Buck Strickland's personal caddy. Hank tells him to respect what Buck does and says, which escalates from receiving Buck's prized watch to doing some unethical things, even though he fails to realize what he is doing ia wrong and enjoys the perks he mistakenly believes he is entitled to. When Hank is furious over this, he tells Bobby to return the watch, not believing Buck would willingly give it away. When Bobby refuses, Hank responds by telling him to live with him, since he believes he won't stay with him. The episode ends with Bobby getting grounded for the rest of the summer. Now, Bobby, along with Buck, were under serious danger from the people who Buck had tried backing out of giving his lost pool ante (including his watch), but Hank never accounts for any of his own parenting negligence here involving Bobby's said naivete, and that he was indirectly responsible for many of the events that transpired here in the first place, so the grounding just seems wrong and inordinately excessive, especially since he was already forgoing idle rec time for his job, and seeing how that did not work out, one would hope he would have that at the very least as a safe alternative, but no.
- Looney Tunes:
- In the short The Turn-Tailed Wolf, the Big Bad Wolf gives his nephew a VERY biased account on his encounter with The Three Little Pigs. At times, he even accidentally breaks character while telling the story, making it pretty clear to the audience ( and, by the end of the short, his nephew) that it's a fabrication.
- 1941's The Trial of Mr. Wolf, taking place in a courtroom trial, has the Big Bad Wolf telling of how he was terrorized by the grandmother of Red Riding Hood, who was after his pelt. The jury is comprised on twelve wolves who are ultimately agreed to finding the Big Bad Wolf not guilty. When Big Bad finishes his testimony, the jury finds it so far-fetched that they're now skeptical.
Big Bad: (groping) And if that ain't the truth, I hope... uh, I hope I get run over by a streetcar! (a streetcar bursts through the wall and runs over him) Well... maybe I did exaggerate just a little.
- In Moral Orel, Clay Puppington practically lives by shifting blame. In one episode, he teaches Orel the same (thankfully, Orel didn't keep that lesson for long). Orel counsels Principal Fakey to do the same, regarding Fakey's infidelity. This extends to claiming he's been faithful and accusing his wife of cheating on him and giving him gonorrhea, while he's having sex with the woman who gave the disease, as she tells him it's not that bad. He then states there's no decency in the world and goes home from school to throw her out. With his pants around his ankles the whole way.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
- In "Testing Testing 1, 2, 3" Rainbow Dash realizes she's going to fail the Wonderbolts history test, then turns around and blames Twilight for it, even though it was clearly her fault for not paying the slightest bit of attention when Twilight was trying to help her.
- Lord Tirek hates his brother Scorpan for betraying him... despite the fact Scorpan tried his hardest to get Tirek to join him in performing a Heel-Face Turn with him, and Scorpan only betrayed him when Tirek left him with no other choice and thus Tirek has no-one to blame but himself.
- Lucy in Peanuts. In the animated special It's Your First Kiss, Charlie Brown, she pulls the football from Charlie Brown in an actual football game with a game-deciding last-second field goal on the line, and then later (with Peppermint Patty) blames him for missing. (Charlie Brown himself feels let down by this miss, even though it clearly wasn't his fault).
- The Simpsons:
- "Bart Star": Homer has a flashback to a floor gymnastics routine. Abe yells "You're gonna blow it" at him... and so he does, and Abe then gets mad at him. To add insult to injury, Abe's bitter condemnation to Homer — immediately after yelling this out — are "This is what I get for having faith in you."
- In the episode "Rosebud," Adolf Hitler blames losing World War II on a teddy bear.
- Homer in full Jerkass mode always finds someone else to blame:
Homer, your problem is quite simple. You're a drunken, childish buffoon. Homer:
Which is society's fault because... Gabriel: It's your fault!
- When Homer tried to back out of donating a kidney to his dad (whose kidneys Homer was responsible for damaging):
Homer: Oh, but I don't want them cutting up my soft, supple body! Why didn't someone tell me what I was volunteering for? This is everybody's fault but mine!
- Sideshow Bob gives a slight variant in "Funeral for a Fiend".
I did try to kill the Simpsons. I really did. But I would like to plead not guilty, on the grounds of insanity. Insanity, caused by my persecution, at the hands of (points at Bart
) this- young- BOY!
- In "Pokey Mom", Principal Skinner demands reformed prisoner Jack Crowley paint a cutesy mural on the school wall. Jack, under protest, does as he's told...and it's very poorly received by the crowd. When fingers point at Skinner, to save his own ass he neatly swings the situation around to make it Jack's fault. And then Jack himself does this when he burns both the mural and Skinnner's car in retaliation, the latter of which he does so in full public view. Even after that Jack tries to insist that he didn't do it.
- In "Bart the Lover", Bart plays a prank on Mrs Krabappel which affects her more deeply than he expected and comments "I can't help but feel partly responsible".
- In "Lisa the vegetarian", Lisa uses heavy machinery to destroy a barbecue organized by her father. She admits his fault but not completely. Of course, Homer was a bit of a Jerkass to her but this doesn't justify Lisa's behavior.
Homer: Ohhhh. Lisa. I was looking for you. I wanted to apologize. I don't know exactly what went wrong but it's always my fault.
- South Park:
- Butters is used to being a scapegoat.
Butters: It's great, you get to throw rocks at cars and if the driver gets angry, you blame me.
Cartman: (after sending Butters to the store and then destroying the TV) It was just... I was just... BUTTERS YOU ASSHOLE!
- Also done in The Movie, as the end of the song "Blame Canada" has the line We must blame them and cause a fuss/before somebody thinks of blaming us! due to them allowing their children to go see a movie with foul language, vulgar jokes, and various other things and blaming Canada for it instead of themselves.
- In "Proper Condom Use", the parents are angry that the school is not teaching children about sex, something that is usually the responsibility of parents. At the end of the episode, they get called out on that by Chef, as the teachers they pick to explain are Mr. Mackey (who hasn't had sex in decades), Ms. Choksondik (who Does Not Like Men and thinks Sex Is Evil), and Mr. Garrison (no explanation necessary).
- Butters is often a scapegoat for his own parents. In one episode, Butters is grounded because his dad mistakenly put Hamburger Helper in his coffee.
- In "Fishsticks", Jimmy comes up with the funniest joke ever (according to the show, at least) while Cartman is lounging on the couch eating pretzels. Cartman quickly takes half the credit. When Kyle rightly questions Cartman's involvement in writing the joke, Cartman has a flashback and decides that, yes, he did do the lion's share of the work, and Jimmy's the one who is taking more credit than is due. Naturally, he blames Kyle for being jealous. Kyle tells him that Cartman is exactly this trope and is able to easily fool himself. Another flashback later, and Cartman is convinced that he did all the work (while fighting off Jew-bots as the Human Torch) and uses Kyle's logic to convince Jimmy that he's this trope.
- "Pinewood Derby" has Randy cheat on the soapbox derby race he and Stan are participating in by stealing a hadron collider. After the winning boxcar launches into space and is found by aliens, things escalate into a Fawlty Towers Plot where everyone lies about not finding "space cash" while hiding it. When things come to a head, Stan, who never wanted to cheat in the first place, comes clean about the car they used not using the approved items in their kit. Randy praises him for telling the truth before punishing him, clearly not taking any responsibility.
- The Spectacular Spider-Man:
- In season 2 episode 3 Gwen gives Peter The Look and chews him out for not talking to her after their first kiss at the end of season 1. Petey did try to talk to her, but she was the one who was avoiding him.
- Harry does this in season 1, claiming that he failed a test "'Cause Pete abandoned me!" In this case, his father Norman actually called him out on it. "You didn't fail because of Peter. Take some responsibility. If you want to pass a test, then study. You want to be popular? Be popular. Take control of your own destiny."
- Also Sally blaming Peter for Liz breaking up with Flash in season 1, and then in season 2, claiming that he messed up the social order of the entire school.
- Even Black Cat tears into him in "Opening Night", although this version is much more dramatic than most of the other examples. She yells at Spidey for her father choosing to stay in prison rather than escape with her. The man killed Uncle Ben, and she's crying because he didn't get away with it. Especially unfair, since she expected Spidey to pull off the Heroic Sacrifice to gas the escaped villains.
- And Harry blaming Spider-Man for Norman's "death" at the end of season two, claiming Spider-Man "should've helped him" despite the fact that one, Spidey had just figured out Norman was Green Goblin. 2. Norman was trying to kill him. 3. Norman had hired the Chameleon to be him to throw Spidey off his tail and lie to Harry. Oh yeah real nice reasoning Harry. note
- Also, when they try out for the football team. Harry whines about Peter being better than him in the try outs. He was the one who asked Peter to come along.
- In general, Harry tends to do this quite a lot, which is likely a trait he picked up from his father Norman, who's catchphrase is "Don't apologize. I never do.". This nearly gets Norman killed in the very first episode where he refuses to apologize to the Vulture for stealing his life's work-while he's being flown above the city and being threatened with a long drop to the pavement. It may be possible to be a Magnificent Bastard and still be Too Dumb to Live, but you have to have to admire his dedication to that principle.
- Spider-Man: The Animated Series:
- Eddie Brock always blamed Spidey for anything that went wrong with his career as a journalist. Being unable to expose Kurt Konnors as the Lizard was the only thing he could actually blame Spidey. As for the others:
- "The Spider Slayer": Eddie Brock announced on Jameson's TV network that Spider-Man was Flash Thompson. Sure, Flash might have decided to dress himself like Spidey to scare Peter Parker but it was Spidey's fault Jameson became laughingstock for all his competitors (even FOX). Jameson agreed it was Spidey's fault but fired Brock because he (as far as he knew) couldn't fire Spidey.
- "Return of the Spider Slayers": Eddie Brock had just got another job as a journalist when a Spider Slayer sent after him by someone who put him (and several others) in the trope's other end. Alistair Smythe blamed Spidey, Eddie, Jameson and Norman for his father's "death" despite it being his father's fault for sending the first Spider Slayer after Spidey and the Kingpin's for being The Man Behind the Man in that case. (Ironically, the Kingpin was sponsoring this revenge) The incident caused Eddie's new boss to believe him to be the trouble Jameson described him to be and fired him. Eddie blamed Spidey for losing this other job despite Spidey's only role in the whole thing was saving Eddie.
- In the three-part episode "The Alien Costume", Eddie Brock was near the site where a space shuttle crashed and had the chance to photograph Rhino stealing something and Spidey trying to catch him. When Jameson arrived there out of concern for his son (who was one of the astronauts), Brock didn't mention Rhino and lied that Spidey stole something from there and offered photos to prove it if Jameson rehired him. Spider would later confront Eddie and Jameson, telling the truth and demanding Jameson to call off the reward. Jameson didn't believe there was a man in a rhinoceros suit. When Jameson's son recovered consciousness and confirmed Spidey's version, Brock was fired, lost his reputation, his health (he sneezed while muttering about everything he lost), and his apartment (he found a notice of eviction at the door) and blamed Spidey for all those losses.
- Spider-Man: The New Animated Series has it's fair share (this being a Spider-Man cartoon and all). In the second episode, when Kingpin tricks Spidey into stealing a very important chip, Peter is kidnapped by an FBI agent who interrogates him, and confiscates a videotape of a science lesson that Peter recorded for Mary-Jane, accusing Peter of being involved in Bio warfare. The agent later calls Peter and berates him for wasting time giving him the tape.
- Thomas the Tank Engine frequently shows railwaymen screwing up, causing no end of crashes and delays. But the engines will nearly always be blamed for it.
- In "Thomas Comes to Breakfast", Thomas crashed through the station master's house because a cleaner had fiddled with his controls, but the Fat Controller still chewed Thomas out for it.
- In the episode "One Good Turn", everyone blames Bill and Ben for the incident with the turntable, when the narrator very clearly said that it was the foreman's mistake.
- Averted in "Wayward Winston". While the Fat Controller scolds Winston for rolling away, he also admits that it's partially his fault for not putting the brake on.
- Played for Drama in Transformers Animated:
- Exemplified by many of the villains in Batman: Who didn't have someone other than themselves to blame, might be a better question. Even Bruce blames himself for the death of his parents which was beyond his ability to have stopped. Beautifully pointed out by the DA in The Animated Series episode, "The Trial", when she concludes, "Batman did not create any of you, you created him!" after all of the villains played the trope straight in their testimonies.
- The Powerpuff Girls:
- One episode has a fat cop who did nothing but sit around and eat donuts get fired for that very reason. He then believes he was fired because the Powerpuff Girls are cleaning up all the crime in the city and making the police obsolete, rather than think it is because he was lazy and didn't do any work.
- Princess Morbucks always blames the girls for not accepting her as a Powerpuff Girl, and then blames her father for not giving her enough money for "cool gadgets".
- Phineas and Ferb:
- Dr. Diminutive once "borrows" (read: stole) Doofenshmirtz's Schmaltz-inator and uses it for something he is arrested for. He blames Doof for his arrest just because it was Doof who invented the inator.
- Doof blames Perry for his plans failing, even when he screws them up himself. In "That Sinking Feeling" he curses Perry when his lighthouse rocket ends up lodged in the Evil, Inc. building even though Perry had completely failed to foil him that time.
- Also, when Doof faild to destroy the adult diaper factory, he blamed Perry despite acknowledging Perry had no role on it whatsoever.
- Jackie Chan Adventures: In "Queen of the Shadowkhan", Finn, Ratso, and Chow pin the blame of their failure in stopping Jackie from escaping with the archive on the Shadowkhan themselvesnote . Shendu is not particularly happy with this.
- My Life as a Teenage Robot: The Crust Cousins have it in for Jenny for getting them arrested by the police. The reason they were arrested: for causing a fire that burned down the school by interfering with Jenny's circuitry while operating a laser, in order to ruin her.
Shendu: The Shadowkhan are my puppets. They do only what I command. Are you suggesting this is my fault?!
- SWAT Kats:
- As revealed in the Origins Episode, when Chance and Jake (a.k.a. T-Bone and Razor) were still in the Enforcers, they were pursuing Dark Kat with their jet, only for Feral to order them to fall back and leave Dark Kat to him. When they refused, he actually knocked their jet out of the sky and into Enforcer headquarters, causing significant damage to the building and allowing Dark Kat to escape. Feral flat-out refused to acknowledge that the entire mess was his fault for interfering in the first place, even after Chance point-blank told him so, and placed all the blame on Chance and Jake, kicking them off the force and sentencing them to work at the salvage yard until they pay off the damages. It actually makes Chance and Jake upstaging him as the Swat Kats throughout the series very satisfying.
- Chance and Jake themselves pull this off in the second episode of the series, though. They manage to capture a villain named Morbulus, but decide to simply dump him in the sea so the Enforcers could pick him up there, this despite the Enforcers not being near them yet and the area where they dumped Morbulus being close to a rocky shore with access to the sewers. Naturally, Morbulus easily escapes into the sewers, and Feral calls the Swat Kats out on it. The one time Feral is right about them screwing up, they get angry and blame him for it (though not to his face), and to take it even further, even Callie blames Feral for what was clearly the Swat Kats' fault.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012):
- In a first season episode, after being turned into Spider Bytez, Vic attacks the Turtles in a rage, blaming them for his mutation. However, if he hadn't been acting like such a Fat Bastard to them throughout the episode, and screwed up their attempt to save him from the Kraang, he never would have come in contact with the mutagen in the first place.
- In the second season, Mutagen Man begins blaming the Turtles for his transformation into this horrific Blob Monster, except that he ended up that way despite their attempts to stop him deliberately exposing himself to mutagen. It may be justified, since it's implied that his mutation has destroyed his sanity.
- The exact same thing happens with Michelangelo in a season two episode where he intentionally exposes himself to mutagen to make himself cool, even ignoring the warning labels on the can and his own common sense from experience. The end result has his mutation going out of control so much it nearly kills him, and continues to blame the others for not warning him of its effects, even after Donatello points out that there were indeed warnings on the can.
- Shredder has this mentality constantly. More than once, he has attempted to hurt Splinter, had it backfire in his face, hurt a bystander Shredder did not want hurt, and blamed Splinter for it.
- The Fairly OddParents: In one episode, Vicky causes an avalanche that leaves Timmy and herself trapped in a cave and freezing to death, and then angrily tells Timmy that it's all his fault. Timmy, however, quickly points out that she was the one who caused the avalanche in the first place, and goes off on a "The Reason You Suck" Speech about how Vicky is responsible for all of his misery and how, even if he dies, at least Vicky is going down with him.
- Camp Lakebottom: In one episode, Suzi and Buttsquat have jet skis. Suzi invites her brother to join her only to close a glass door on him every time he tries to accept her invitation. She blames him when the mechanism that opens and closes the door breaks.
- According to Thucydides, the Athenian democracy was like this. Generals who survived a failed expedition were often put to death by democratic vote, despite the fact that the people had voted for the expedition.
- When Denmark became an absolute monarchy, a "King's law" stated that the king was "above all human laws", and therefore faultless. This rule was executed in Denmark all the way to 1848, when a democratic constitution was drafted. Kind of an Enforced Trope. Any Danish king from 1665 up to 1848 and onwards could argue with Never My Fault as a legal right.
- Psychologists call this self-serving bias. It is also one of the defining traits of a sociopath.
- A lot of politics can be seen like this, depending on how cynical you are. Politics is, in a lot of ways, a popularity contest. If you plan on moving up the political ladder, you need to try and keep something of a clean record. When a large political blunder occurs (like the current debt crisis) there tends to be a lot of shuffling blame to avoid being the ones with egg on their faces when it's time for re-election season.
- The United States Congress regularly gets low approval ratings from the public (usually around 10-20%, less than half of whoever is President). When asked about their own Congressman or Senator, however, voters rate them much higher the vast majority of the time.
- Actually a very common argument many convicts make to justify their crimes. Most people who watch enough crime documentaries can list at least one criminal who for either Lack of Empathy or desire to eventually be proven innocent blames other people. Admitting to guilt might also jeopardize their chances in a retrial or parole hearing.
- This is how the chocolate companies try to justify doing little or nothing to help the many child slaves that gather cocoa. They claim they have no control over the cocoa farms they buy from, when they could just stop buying from said farms and/or spend some of the billions they have to help those children.
- Governments can play this game with other countries, such as in what prompted "Operation Paul Bunyan". Two US soldiers were attacked by around 40 North Korean soldiers. North Korea then claimed that the Americans attacked them.
- This can be a particularly insidious justification / tactic used by bullies and abusers to dominate their victims and avoid having to take responsibility for their own actions and tempers — choosing something small the victim does (or inventing something entirely) to use as an excuse to lash out, and then blaming the victim for the bully's own abuse. The classic examples are the abuser who hits the victim and then asks "why did you make me hurt you?", or the bully who makes fun of something they know the victim is sensitive about and, when the victim gets upset, protests that "it's just a joke; why don't you have a sense of humor?". A response of "it's not funny, you asshole" is likely to be written off as either further proof of the victim's humorlessness or evidence that they're a "drama whore" who needs conflict to make themselves feel special. Of course, this is why teachers are taught to make children responsible for their own behaviour.
- There's another particularly insidious justification / tactic used by bullies and abusers, and it's almost impossible to beat because the tactic relies on group perception to work: they frequently accuse the other person of not taking responsibility. In other words, an abuser might go home and beat his wife, and if his wife complains, he might accuse her of shifting blame for provoking him into doing it. This is obvious nonsense, since the wife does not control her husband's behavior—but where "personal responsibility" is repeated as a mantra, the strategy works. The wife's friends may then accuse her of "blaming others", just because her husband was the first one to bring up the magic phrase of personal responsibility, when it should be clear to a calmer head that the husband is shifting blame and the wife is the one being blamed.
- All victim-blaming has this trope at its roots. An abuser characterizes themselves as "reacting" to a behavior displayed by their victim, shifting the blame for a perceived initial transgression onto them, especially in situations where aggression is socially acceptable and a victim "has only themselves to blame" for putting themselves in a dangerous situation, or for "provoking" an abuser by not going out of their way to placate or mollify them. If you've ever heard someone say "Well, it's your own fault for (whatever), you know how they are," you've run into this trope.
- Likewise, some conmen run a similar line that attempts to put the blame of their crime on the victim. In these cases, however, the line is less "X (the victim) provoked me and therefore its his/her fault" and more "X was Too Dumb to Live since X didn't ask one specific question or wanted something they hadn't earned; X therefore deserved to get ripped off." Or in short - "A fool and his money are soon parted". Alternately, many confidence games lure in their intended "mark" with the prospect of cheating the con artist out of some money, which lets the con artist justify it as "If they hadn't been greedy, they wouldn't have lost anything." The hypocrisy of this argument is self-evident, given that the con artist set up the scenario specifically to rip the mark off in the first place.
- Trolls also rely on this trope whenever they piss off the community or the moderators and then act all surprised that people are reacting so negatively towards them. In other words, it's everyone else's fault that they are reacting to someone making a questionable comment. According to an article by a former commenter on one political website, anyone who showed up to disagree with them was a "troll". The response to "trolls", among other things, was to deliberately provoke them - in other words, troll them - until they either left the site or said something bannable. The website in question actually linked to and endorsed this guide to dealing with "trolls". The guy running the site later said that he would never, ever endorse harassment of people on the other side. It's not clear whether he was lying, or his bias is just that severe.
- Whenever a PC port of a game doesn't sell well due to being buggy, missing important features, or just burdened by unmanageable Copy Protection, the publisher always puts the blame on piracy. Which usually leads to the copy protection on future games being even more unmanageable. Conversely, pirates themselves may fall into this trope when trying to justify their behavior, claiming that the media industry (games, movies, music, etc.) has driven them to piracy due to detrimental practices such as the aforementioned unmanageable Copy Protection. The industry in general can do this, blaming piracy, the economy, etc. for when big budget games don't sell as much as hoped, conveniently forgetting the fact that they frequently budget far beyond what could be reasonably expected of said game, go for widespread appeal and fail at it, badly, focus on one aspect of the game above others, ignore the reasons that people like the genre and/or series, just making a crappy game period, and many other reasons on their end that cause this lack of needed sales.
- On the flip side of the coin, some pirates can and will blame everything and everything for "forcing" them to pirate stuff, such as, say, the latest episode not being available for their cell phone legitimately...yet. Or a game company selling "expensive" DLC for the game, even if they didn't want to buy any DLC in the first place. Or even offering a season pass for DLC which the pirate, again, doesn't want. The ugliness of this was shown when an independent developer allowed the buyers to pay whatever they thought a game was worth, going as low as 1 cent: about a third of the downloads were still pirated. Apparently, even paying a single cent is too much for some people. Some defenders, of course, argued that the pirates may have been people without credit cards, possibly in third-world countries.
- Plenty of movie executives and network executives are this way. They'll demand unnecessary changes to a film or TV show thinking it will improve it. The changes the executive wants are horrible, the fanbase hates, and the show is cancelled. Who takes the heat? The creator of the show, instead of the executive who demanded the changes in the first place! This one goes both ways. It's never the creator's fault when a movie or show fails, always the executive's.
- This can even stretch across generations and is being increasingly seen regarding modern youth.
- Many older people criticise young people today as being entitled and self-obsessed, often forgetting where they would have gotten such traits from. In the aftermath of the global economic crisis, many young people are criticised for being unwilling to take jobs involving manual labour or working minimum wage even though many were taught that such jobs were solely for people who didn't go to college or have much ambition in life. Listen to most commentators and they will often say something along the lines of "We ruined this generation" and yet act completely shocked that children act and think in the way they trained them to.
- More than a few articles mention the idea of the "participation trophy", and how many of today's youth have received too many of them to understand how real competition in the workplace operates, but they never seem to ask who was giving those trophies out.
- Also, the people who complain about entitled and self-obsessed attitudes among the young tend to cheerfully support those attitudes (or at least deflect criticism away from those attitudes)—when they come from those they admire. Corporate CEOs give themselves huge bonuses while laying off whole companies, and the people cheer them as entrepreneurs and successful businessmen. Then, they wonder why the young seem to think they'll be similarly rewarded if they wreck others' lives after they graduate with MBAs. Tyrants of various sorts are consistently rewarded for tyrannical behavior since their victims are told by the community not to complain. Then when the young decide to worship the strong, these communities are actually stumped as to why.
- It can go both ways. Younger generations blame older people for all the problems in the world without working to change things themselves.
- Michael Jackson had a bad habit of blaming others for problems he was partially responsible for.
- He continually railed against the tabloid press (and mainstream media as a whole) for presenting him as an Eccentric Millionaire. But in The Eighties, he actually planted the "hyperbaric chamber" and "Elephant Man's skeleton" stories in the tabloids himself because he thought there was No Such Thing as Bad Publicity, and his actual behavior was putting him in The Tyson Zone by that point. Not only didn't he change his behavior, he claimed that they were the ones who came up with the aforementioned stories. Barbara Walters called him out on his strange, attraction-getting behavior in a 1997 interview, but he insisted that it and his fame were no reason for the Paparazzi to hunt him down or for journalists to not write only "kind" things about him. (He may have had a point on the former, especially so soon after the death of Princess Diana, but the latter?)
- As his behavior and allegations of criminal activity — most infamously, multiple accusations of child molestation being leveled against him (one accuser's case went to court and Jackson was found not guilty, while other accusers received out-of-court settlements) — eroded his fanbase in North America, his record sales went into decline, not helped by his general unwillingness to do concerts or press junkets. But in 2002, he blamed the disappointing sales of Invincible on institutionalized racism at his label and in the music industry as a whole, going on to claim that his topping Elvis Presley and The Beatles in popularity motivated sinister industry forces to bring him down with wild rumors and allegations. This earned him much scorn both within and without the industry.
- Following his 2009 death from a prescription drug overdose, his doctor Conrad Murray was convicted of prescribing him the drugs; as a doctor, he could not excuse this by claiming that Michael insisted on taking the drugs. In 2013, Michael's family sued his concert promoter AEG Live for hiring Murray and pressuring him into prescribing the drugs in order for Michael to be able to perform. AEG Live fired back by saying that Michael hired the doctor himself, so they couldn't be blamed for this. The jury found in favor of AEG Live: While they agreed that the company hired Murray, they did not think he was unfit and/or incompetent to perform the duties the company assigned him to do, which did not include administering the drugs. (They thought he acted unethically but that wasn't part of the question they were answering.) The family's case went over poorly in the court of public opinion, as they knew that Michael had problems with addiction for decades; thus it came off as hypocritical to blame others for not doing anything about it when they did so little themselves. The family and fanbase's attempts to absolve Michael himself of any blame for his demise, when he was the one who became addicted, haven't helped.
- Invariably the result of disputes between cable companies and cable networks. If an important event is on the line, it may help. There is also an unending argument of who's entitled\responsible for what between ISPs such as Comcast and Verizon and content providers such as Netflix and Google.
- Any cat owner will tell you that they live this Trope. When your cat breaks something or knocks something over, their first reaction is invariably to move a few feet away and start looking around nonchalantly, as if they're thinking, "What? No, that wasn't me. I'm all the way over here."
- Likewise if they trip or stumble when attempting a jump. Cats tend to look right at you afterward, their expression reading, "The bookcase was greased up."
- Lord Cardigan's first words to his troopers after the Charge of the Light Brigade: "It was a mad, harebrained trick but no fault of mine!" Strictly speaking he was correct, since his commanders Lord Raglan and Lucan ordered the Charge. Still kind of a dickish comment after losing half of his command in battle.
- A lot of terrorist groups like to play the victim card when the world finally has enough of their shenanigans, willingly forgetting that many anti-terror operations are in retaliation for their own works.
- The inverse has proven true: when a democratic government's actions have created or galvanized a terrorist movement, said government will likely take no responsibility for this and declare that they have been fighting them.
- Many have blamed "media bias" for reporting a nasty comment.
- When someone gets caught breaking a rule of any kind, most often their first reaction is to blame the catcher or the rule itself.
- John Landis has been pulling this trope for years ever since The Twilight Zone film adaptation where Vic Morrow and two illegally hired child actors were killed during shooting of an outdoors scene at night when an explosion went off too soon, causing a hovering helicopter to crash on them. From the start of the trial to the finish Landis blamed everyone else but himself, as did the film's own producers and crew members.
- Most people have noted that members of the Obama Administration still continue to blame the Bush Administration for new problems despite the Bush Administration being out of office for over 6 years. The inverse is also true; former members of the Bush Administration and Republican congress members tend to blame Obama and his administration for things they themselves caused, sometimes intentionally. And of course, members of the Bush Administration had previously spent a fair amount of time in office blaming their problems on the Clinton Administration.
- Similar to the above, David Cameron has acquired a reputation for blaming absolutely everything that goes wrong on the previous Labour government. The economy is poor and unemployment is skyrocketing? All Labour's fault for handing him those problems. One of Cameron's own policies implemented after he came to power has failed? Labour's fault again, since if they hadn't handed him such a broken, dysfunctional country he would never have needed to implement that policy in the first place. It eventually got to the point where after he twisted his ankle by slipping on one of the staircases in 10 Downing Street in 2013, it was widely joked that the first thing he did was blame the floor polish that Gordon Brown's cleaners used.
- Repeat criminals and gangstas tend to hold grudges against or despise the police for arresting them. Naturally it rarely occurs to these individuals that the police probably wouldn't bother with them if they weren't breaking the law. Police also do this to some extent. It's not unheard of for officers accused of brutality to claim that the victim was "resisting arrest."
- Numerous people have tried to sue creators of various "vices" like cigarettes, alcohol, and fast food for contributing to the plaintiff's self-destructive lifestyle. The lawsuits never get very far in court, for the simple reason that consumption of these companies' products is always personal choice. No-one is putting a gun to anyone's head and forcing them to smoke, drink and eat too much junk food.
- Certain controversies have involved someone publicly badmouthing large groups of people, then trying to deflect blame when said people get offended. Often by accusing them of "harassing" them.
- Anyone who resorts to an Ad Hominem; the basic logic is "somebody doesn't like us? Well that can't possibly be our fault! No no, it's clearly because the people who don't like us are terrible people."
- This is a striking feature of Spanish-speaking cultures, especially in some Latin American ones, to the grade there's no equivalent in Spanish of the English word accountability.
- There's actually one: Responsabilidad (which has not the exact meaning of the English word "responsibility").
- Eminem had a tendency of blaming his mother for his prescription drug addiction. Not the case anymore since the release of Recovery.
- Sonichu creator Christian Weston Chandler has a general habit of this, but took it to ludicrous extremes after being arrested for pepper-spraying a GameStop employee in December 2014. Saying it was the employee's own fault for trying to enforce a previous ban was bad enough, but Chandler tried to put the blame mostly on Sega of all people, for changing Sonic the Hedgehog's arm color from tan to blue in the Sonic Boom games, with said ban being a result of Chandler defacing the game's posters and boxes to try and make Sonic's arms look right.