A form of Pre-Mortem One-Liner
where the utterer has determined in advance that he is going to kill someone, indicating to the other person that he has no chance to survive
. Frequently uttered by villains, but may also be uttered by heroes depending on their Character Alignment
. If It's Personal
for the hero, someone may say that If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him
Variations in this Stock Phrase
frequently manifest as substitutions for the word "die," depending on the situation, or the age group its catering to
. Its most common variation is "Prepare to be destroyed!"
Surprisingly, nobody explores exactly how
you prepare to die. Perhaps you're supposed to do it by borrowing large sums of money and unloading long term stocks. Or leaving a note to the police explaining who killed you and why, thus saving some hard-working public servant a lot of effort. Traditionally, you did it by making peace with God
, hence this line's occasional substitutes, "Say your prayers!" or "Prepare to meet your maker!" Still, the person who says it usually never gives them enough time to prepare.
When done against a hero, expect the Big Damn Heroes
to swing in at any moment. Sometimes it's the Big Damn Villains
instead. A Thwarted Coup de Grâce
is sure to follow.
Compare I'm Your Worst Nightmare
. Contrast Ineffectual Death Threats
. Also, contrast Don't Make Me Destroy You
, where the character is actually trying to put off the impending death (Or, at least, he is claiming that). A frequent, if highly unimaginative, Pre Ass Kicking One Liner
or Pre-Mortem One-Liner
. Contrast You Have No Chance to Survive
, where the character telegraphs his death threats
well in advance. Contrast I'll Kill You!
, where the act wasn't premeditated.
Other phrases that mean the same thing include "and now you die" and "time to die."
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Anime & Manga
- Fullmetal Alchemist
Roy Mustang: No need to say anything more, Envy. The first thing I'm gonna incinerate is your tongue.
- Before that, there was Scar:
"Now tell me, for what purpose did you choose to slaughter all of my people!? Depending on your answer, I'LL SEND YOU TO JOIN GOD!! NO, you don't deserve to stand by God alongside my fallen brothers! YOUR ONLY SOLACE FROM MY WRATH WILL BE DAMNATION!"
- First episode of Basilisk.
- Dragon Ball Z:
Gogeta: I am neither Goku nor Vegeta, I am the one who will destroy you!''
- Claymore gives us Teresa of the Faint Smile, who goes against the ironclad rule of not being allowed to kill humans.
Teresa: Damn your existences, for they are lower than that of a yoma. I will kill each and every one of you.''
- The Soul Eater anime has Medusa do this to Chrona right before Maka's Big Damn Heroes moment.
- In Suzumiya Haruhi (Melancholy to be specific), Kyon is about to be killed by Ryouko Asakura - before Yuki steps through just in time to stop Ryouko in her tracks.
- Ryouko also does this in The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya, after stabbing Kyon, telling him to savor the pain, since it's the last thing he'll feel.
- In FAKE, this is combined with Big Damn Heroes and Crowning Moment of Funny:
- As seen in the pic, Kenshiro often uses this as his way of declaring that a particular villain's actions are unforgivable. And when he says something like this? He means every word.
- A variation used sometimes in InuYasha: "Wash your neck!" (The translation notes explained, as in preparation for execution.)
- The Big O: "I will reset the world in my own image with my own will. But before I do that, I'll eliminate everyone who doesn't deserve to exist in my new world. And that includes you filthy scum!" It's not entirely clear whether he was talking about the poor people or the Union, but either way, it was just a little uncalled for.
- In One Piece, Luffy is talking to a marine on a Den Den Mushi. He tries to tell them to "Wash your neck and wait", but gets it wrong and instead says "Wash your potatoes".
- Most of the Straw Hats refrain from this (prefering to just go straight to murdering their enemies) which makes it all the more beautiful when they do
Luffy: Which one of you is Arlong?
- RanmaOneHalf's Ryoga brings us the fandom-memetic "Ranma, prepare to die!". Flanderization has us believe that it's his catchphrase, but he really only uses it a couple of times.
- In Cowboy Bebop: The Movie, Vincent confers with his hacker subordinate about the status of their plan, and leaves with the cryptic command, "Say your prayers." Later, after the hacker confirms that he's done everything asked of him, Vincent asks if he said his prayers, and kills him.
- A Certain Magical Index has Mugino say a variant after Hamazura pisses her off: "I will fucking kill you!" Between the expression on her face and her general personality, it's terrifying.
- In Code Geass, this is practically Luciano Bradley's MO, but only because he enjoys it. Unfortunately for him, he runs into the receiving end of this trope courtesy of Kallen during the second battle over Tokyo.
- In that same battle, Lelouch, who has otherwise been lenient with Suzaku given their past friendship and various circumstances, sets his sights on killing his once best friend following the arrest during their would-be truce, which was made to look like Suzaku was responsible, and in Lelouch's eyes, made him out to be a full-bloodied backstabber. Well, not on his own, but he orders Kallen to kill him.
Films — Animated
- At the end of The Pebble and the Penguin, Drake yells out "Say your prayers, Hubie!'' just right before being crushed by the very boulder he was going to use to kill Hubie.
- Beauty and the Beast has an interesting aversion, as Gaston originally said "Time to die!" in the rooftop duel, but was changed to "Belle is mine!" due to it being too harsh for a kids' film.
- Not that they were afraid to trot out the phrase in the past — Peter Pan's Captain Hook uses this line word-for-word when he's finally got the title character cornered:
Captain Hook: Insolent youth! Prepare...to die!
- Shrek 2: "Pray for mercy from... Puss in Boots!"
- Toy Story 2: Emperor Zurg says this after he cranks his ion blaster (really a ball launcher) literally Up to Eleven, aimed right at Buzz Lightyear. But in a fit of panic, Rex knocks Zurg off the elevator they're on and makes him fall down the shaft. He survives, being a toy, and apparently had a weird change of heart in the process.
Films — Live-Action
- Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End: "I shall pry the chest away from your cold, dead fingers."
- The Princess Bride:
- Road House:
Jimmy: Prepare to die!
Dalton: You are such an asshole.
- The rather cheesy 1990 comedy Spaced Invaders shows no mercy:
(sarcastically) "Prepare to die, Earth scum. Prepare to die, Earth scum." I'm gonna make sure they carve that on your tombstone!
- Scott Pilgrim vs. The World:
- Blade Runner:
Leon: Wake up! Time to die!
I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate
. All those moments will be lost in time... like tears in rain... Time to die.
- Emperor Palpatine in the climactic scene of Return of the Jedi: "And now, young Skywalker, you will die."
- The Sorcerer's Apprentice has Horvath say "And now, young Dave, I will kill you. Yes, right here in this dreadful bathroom. Quite un-stylish, but you know, these things happen."
- Among the hammiest examples is Jeremy Irons spitting clear across the set to say "Now is your time to die!!" in the Dungeons & Dragons movie.
- From Goldfinger, as James Bond is about to be cut in two with a laser (lengthwise):
Bond: You expect me to talk?
Goldfinger: (laughing) No, Mr. Bond. I expect you to die!
- Bond talks Goldfinger into shutting off the laser.
- Galaxy Quest When the Thermians are showing a smuggled tape off Sarris' ship to the 'crew' of the Protector:
Thermian: I have told you all I know. If you have any mercy within you please . . . let me die.
Sarris: When I grow tired of the noises you make, you shall DIE!
- Lost in Space: When Dr. Smith is transformed into a self-proclaimed god and begins to eat the older Will Robinson:
Smith: Time to die . . . son.
- From Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom'', there's Indiana Jones's "Mola Ram, prepare to meet Kali, IN HELL!". Because he prefers to use the Hindu deities.
- Sark says this to TRON before their final battle (specifically, he says "Prepare to terminate!").
- The Crow: When Eric Draven faces down Top Dollar's entire gang at the club, just before the biggest shootout of the movie.
Eric: You're all going to die.
- Invasion USA (1985): Chuck Norris's character said "It's time to die..." to the Big Bad in the past, before kicking him into unconsciousness. This caused the Big Bad to have nightmares and to wake up screaming every night. When the final showdown occurs, Chuck's character just says "It's time...". And then he blasts the Big Bad out of the top story window with a rocket launcher.
- Highlander The Kurgan says this to Connor.
The Kurgan Now you die!
- The Princess Bride, near the end. Inigo Montoya says this to the six-fingered man, as shown in the page quote.
- Paul Tobin's Prepare To Die plays this straight for about ten pages, after which it is massively averted. The hero, Reaver, is at the mercy of his arch-nemesis, the Octagon, who tells him to prepare to die. The hero, surprisingly, agrees, on condition that he gets a month to do so. Astonished, Octagon instead gives him two weeks. And that's just the beginnning...
- In the Warrior Cats series, Brokentail shouts "Prepare to die!" at a bunch of rats at the end of a chapter in Yellowfang's Secret when the ShadowClan cats attack them.
- Stephen King's Night Shift: In "Children of the Corn," one of the Children tells Burt, "Remand your soul to God, for you will stand before His throne momentarily."
- In Pact, doing this is encouraged by the way in which the karmic system works. Telling someone that you are going to attack or kill them before you do it is tantamount to making a promise and then carrying it out, which has a positive effect on your karma and personal power. This is also used to justify Bond Villain Stupidity such as monologues.
- In A Song of Ice and Fire, during the duel between Oberyn Martell and the massive Ser Gregor Clegane, Oberyn begins by asking his opponent if he knows who Oberyn is. Gregor, never one to stand on ceremony, responds with "Some dead man." and immediately attacks.
- In The Zombie Knight, in the Eighth Oath a rogue Vanguard faction has kidnapped a prominent Rainlord, and the rest of the Rainlords are gearing up to attack. When the enemy general sends them a message offering to trade the hostages he has for the one he wants, the Rainlords respond by sending him an umbrellanote .
Live Action TV
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Subverted in "All The Way". A vampire rushes at Buffy shouting, "Die, Slayer!" Buffy casually stakes him and goes, "Mm-hmm."
- In an episode of Star Trek: The Original Series, the Enterprise is confronted by a powerful alien vessel that announces its intention to destroy our heroes, and goes on to say — "we assume you have a deity... or deities," and politely offers to give the Enterprise crew time to make "whatever preparations" they deem necessary. An unusually explicit example of this trope, where the opponent says "prepare to die" and clearly actually means it. And they're all the scarier for that.
- In an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, Where Silence Has Lease, the Enterprise-D encounters a similar situation, but the alien claims that between a third to half of the ship's crew will be killed as part of the alien's experiments about death. Picard tries a Take That and starts the self-destruct sequence. Subverted in that the alien's experiments related to monitoring how humans reacted to the imminent threat of death without actually intending to kill them. Double-subverted in that the biggest threat to the ship and the crew in this context was Captain Picard himself, since he threatened to kill the entire crew, as opposed to letting the alien choose which of them would survive.
- The ending reveals that it's actually a TRIPLE subversion: Picard knew that the alien was actually interested in how humans react to the threat of imminent death, and calls the alien out on it, and gets the alien to confirm he was right by appearing to him.
- The Borgs' well-known stock phrase is a variation, as it implies a form of death, at least on a metaphysical level (the death of the individual).
- Power Rangers often uses the more family-friendly "Prepare to be destroyed!"
- "Say your prayers, Blackadder, it's POKER TIME!
- In Boy Meets World, Eric Matthews acts in a Shakespeare play, performing magnificently so... and then he privately utters the words to Jack, his co-actor and whom he's swordfighting with, "Prepare to die, Jedi Master!"
- Horatio Hornblower, "The Even Chance": Before duelling with Hornblower, Jack Simpson, a midshipman of a bully and the most despicable villain, takes some joy to boast, and actually blabs that he attempted to murder Archie Kennedy. (He killed Clayton in another Duel to the Death.)
Simpson: I am going to kill you, Snotty. Just as I killed Clayton. And your little pal Archie.
- Game of Thrones, 'The Mountain and the Viper': At the beginning of the duel between Oberyn Martell and Gregor Clegane, Oberyn stops to ask his opponent if he knows who he is fighting, resulting in this exchange:
Oberyn: Have they told you who I am?
Gregor: Some dead man.
- Tenacious D's Beelzeboss.
: Yes you are fucked
, shit out of luck,
Now I'm complete and my cock you will suck!
This world will be mine, and you're first in line
You brought me the Pick and now you shall both die!
- Johnny Cash's A Boy Named Sue.
Well, I knew that snake was my own sweet dad
From a worn-out picture that my mother'd had,
And I knew that scar on his cheek and his evil eye.
He was big and bent and gray and old,
And I looked at him and my blood ran cold
And I said: "My name is Sue! How do you do!? Now you gonna die!"
- Kaientai (TAKA Michinoku specifically) says this to Lowdown on Sunday Night Heat.
- Hector from Fire Emblem: Rekka no Ken uses this line when fighting Wire, the leader of the group of Black Fang assassins that attack him in the first chapter of Hector's story.
- In Dark Souls, this is literally the tagline of the game. And you will die. A lot. And then, you will die again. Whether it's from a booby trap, a fire-breathing dragon or a sword-wielding wolf, there are so many ways for the game to kick your ass at every turn.
- While not a terrible a offender as it's successor, Demon's Souls manages to kill the player so many times that will make the casual, inexperienced gamer die over and over. Then again, both games are "love letters" of sorts to Nintendo Hard old school arcade games.
- "All your base are belong to us. You are on your way to destruction. You have no chance to survive make your time."
- In the .hack// video games for PS2 there's a weapon called "Prepare to Die"
- In Star Control, the Ur-Quan give you a little time to prepare for death.
Kohr-Ah: We are the Ur-Quan Kohr-Ah. We cleanse our destiny. You will soon die. Make whatever rituals are necessary for your species.
- READY! TO DIE
- In Ascendancy, whenever you declare war on another species, the option you choose is labelled "We declare war on you. Prepare to die."
- Hazama is quite likely to utter this if a given character pisses him off enough. Count on it happening if Makoto is involved.
(after Makoto breaks his plans in Slight Hope
): "Relius was going to take care of you, but shit
... I just don't think I can WAIT that long..."
(after Makoto almost does it again in Friendship
): "Hehehehahahahaha! Let's go, you little bitch
(after Jin parries a hit on Makoto in Decision
): "Now then, if you'd please do me a favor and DIE!"
- Neff from Altered Beast: "Welcome to your doom!"
- Said verbatim by Shao Kahn in the Mortal Kombat series as one of his many taunts: You will die!
- You DARE bring light to my lair?! YOU MUST DIE!! -disco fingers-
- In The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon, Malefor says the line directly before his final showdown with Spyro and Cynder. What makes this note worthy is his general all around character makes it come off as truly threatening. It also helps that regardless of whether or not he wins, the Destroyer might finish them off with the world anyway, so he has a pretty good reason for telling them this.
- What makes it more effective is the simple fact that Malefor says this during the only time in the entire trilogy that he gets angry due to Cynder breaking free of his control thanks to the Power of Love.
- I am SPARTAN-B312. You killed my teammates. Prepare To Die.
- Note that Noble Six (SPARTAN-B312) does not say this out loud, but it is the title of a sub-level/section of the level "The Pillar of Autumn."
- Magneto needs to work on his grammar. From the X-Men arcade game: "Hahahahaha! X-Men, welcome to DIE!
- One of the infested terran's quotes in Starcraft. Considering their role of suicide bomber, it's not exactly an empty threat.
- My name is Guybrush Threepwood. Prepare to die!
- One of Lyude's possible pre-finisher quotes. "You won't live to see the light of day!"
- Also said word for word by a Malpercio-tainted Kalas to Xelha and the others.
- In the original Kirby Super Star, Meta Knight actually said this to Kirby before their duel.
Meta Knight: Kirby, this is it! Prepare To Die!
- Sir Ano does this in one of the Oaklore quests in Dragon Fable.
Sir Ano: My name is Sir Ano de Berg'rac. You're planning to kidnap my princess. Prepare to die.
- Fallout 2:
- The Fallout games in general will have little one-liners like this for the players that want to skip the conversation and get right to the shooting.
- In Fallout: New Vegas, if you see Caesar on his invitation after accumulating a bad rep with the Legion, he'll tell you that it's all a trap and he's going to have you killed on the spot. Shortly after:
- "You crossed the NCR one time too many, now you die!"(NCR Ranger hit squad), or "The Caesar has marked you for death, and the Legion obeys. Ready yourself for battle!"(Legionary assassin squad).
- "Mother...time to go!"
- In Dragon Age: Origins when playing as a human noble, you eventually run into Arl Howe, the man responsible for betraying and killing your family at the beginning of the game. He's now the ruler of Denerim and acting as The Dragon to the game's Big Bad. When you try to call for blood rights against him, he laughs in your face about how he's framed your family as traitors to the country, meaning you no longer have any right to vengeance against him. Among several dialogue options, one is to tell him: "I'm going to enjoy slitting your throat." And in the game's next mission you do.
- In camp, a drunken Oghren tells the Mabari this line when he thinks that the dog took his pants.
- One of the dialogue options for confronting Ser Alrik in Dragon Age II's "Dissent" quest: "Die!"
- The Shin Megami Tensei series brings us Alice: "Would you please die for me?"
- The bosses of Einhänder are a pretty mean lot; most of them say things such as "I'll send you to Hell", or "Welcome! Here you will find only your grave.", with a later one even using this trope almost by the letter. All in German, though.
- Pokémon of all series uses them...but of course, Never Say "Die" is nearly always in place, so. It's pretty common in the Ranger games particularly, with things like (major spoilers ahead):
Kincaid: This will be your final lesson. Fufufufu...Drapion! Show them no mercy!
- And soon after...
"This will be your final resting place! And for the Pokémon onboard, too!"
- And from Purple Eyes, we have this:
"Any last words?" "OK, so those are your last words then." "...That's it. It's all over. Oh, don't get me wrong, it's all over for you too."
- And for a non-Ranger example, we've got Ghetsis from Black and White:
"And since you now know the truth...you must be eliminated!"
- In Tales of Vesperia, Karol yells these very words at an eggbear in a demonstration of false bravery. Which are later mockingly repeated by Yuri in a comically high-pitched voice.
: Die, monster
! You don't belong in this world!
Julius: Nothing you can say will stop me! Prepare to die!
- In Hellsinker, if you meet certain conditions upon defeating Scarlet Queen, the Segment 2 Lead boss, she threatens, "You will die here." Cue One-Winged Angel Bonus Boss form.
- Resident Evil 5 has Wesker say this word for word during the final battle.
- I Wanna Be the Guy parodies the Symphony Of The Night quote, word for word. The Kid attempts it a second time, but is cut short after two words.
- The DonPachi series has "Shinu ga yoi" (lit. "Dying is good", often interpreted to mean "Die!") as a recurring Catch Phrase by the Big Bad.
- Gothic 2: As you're trying to become a Fire Mage, a competing novice trying to kill you for a quest item WILL give you time to prepare to die. Specifically - and hilariously - if you choose to ask him if he has something to smoke, he'll give you a joint and wait patiently until you're done smoking it (the animation takes a while) before attacking you.
- Killtron the "magic death robot" is full of this in Stay Tooned. Ironically, at the end of the Kartoon Kombat minigame, he says, "But I cannot beat you! I am not a fighter, I am a dancer! *sudden Mexican dance*" And then he promptly self-destructs simply "for your pleasure".
- Said word for word in Avatar: The Last Airbender, from Ozai to Aang:
- Ozai being voiced by Mark Hamill and waiting until he had a very good claim to actually winning help keep this out of the narm zone.
- The Avatar Spirit/Raava later counters this with her own when she takes control of Aang when he enters the Avatar State.
- Ben 10: Alien Force: "My name is Kevin Ethan Levin. You Killed My Father. Prepare to die."
- Emperor Zurg often says this to Buzz Lightyear. It's practically one of his Catchphrases.
- Shouted by Flarigan in Aqua Teen Hunger Force during one of the first episodes after Frylock destroys the former's "Rainbow Machine". However, he quickly changes his tune after Frylock launches him into the air.
- From Ed, Edd n Eddy's Big Picture Show:
Rolf: Rolf has had enough of your plat-doodle, elder one. PREPARE YOURSELF FOR A MERCILESS THRASHING!!!
- The Transformers has several examples. Galvatron says, "Prepare, Autobots, to DIE IN DARKNESS!" at the beginning of Five Faces of Death Part 5, and Cyclonus says, "Autobots, prepare to die!" in The Rebirth part 2.
"I've got better things to do tonight than die!"
- Transformers Prime - Predaking tells Ultra Magnus and Wheeljack, "Prepare to perish" after curb-stomping them both. He's interrupted by Optimus before he can follow through.
- From Dan Vs. when Elise under the effects of a Mind-Control Device:
Prepare to be terminated.
Dan: How does one prepare to be terminated?
- In the Rocko's Modern Life episode "A Sucker for the Suck-O-Matic", Rocko and Heffer desperately try to figure out how to shut off Rocko's new vacuum cleaner when it goes on a rampage and starts sucking up his entire house. The Suck-O-Matic then starts sucking the pages out of the instruction manual, and the manual's only advice as to what to do "if Suck-O-Matic sucks instructions" is "Prepare to die!", much to their horror.
- In the Johnny Bravo episode "Bungled In The Jungle", the evil gorilla King Raymond yells, "Prepare to die, you hairless ape!" before throwing logs at Johnny.