"So not only do you get to die, you get to feel like an idiot too."Death sucks. That's why most people are afraid of it. Some people die of old age, or gradually succumb to one of a number of illnesses. When death comes, the lucky among us will go out peacefully with dignity. Some of us might go out fighting the good fight, saving the lives of some unfortunate person whom our consciences cannot ignore and force us to help. They'll all die "good deaths" (and in some cases, heroic deaths), and in Video Games, they'll be quite the spectacle. This trope is not about those people. This trope is about the people who die in ways that are, to put it completely bluntly, ridiculous and embarassing. The manner of their demise are the things you read about on websites dedicated to the Darwin Award. The kind of death that ends up the punchline of a joke told by a standup comedian who specializes in Black Comedy. This is a somewhat Subjective Trope in that, while we might find the way a person joined the Choir Invisible to be humorous and worth a laugh, to the person's family it is a tragedy. The bereaved naturally think you cruel and inhuman for laughing at such a tragedy. And it is a tragedy... someone has died, after all. But that doesn't stop it from being funny, when you think about it. And, well, in some cases, even grieving friends and relatives might readily admit that it is Actually Pretty Funny. Sometimes overlaps with Cruel and Unusual Death when the death is not just embarassing, it's also horrific. Often overlaps with Death by Falling Over. Another likely category of undignified death are victims of The Can Kicked Him, both because a bathroom is usually safe and it takes bizarre circumstances to die there, and because you're likely to be unclothed and/or performing bodily functions. See also Dropped a Bridge on Him. Contrast Dying Moment of Awesome, which may well be the exact opposite of this trope, as well as Great Way to Go, which is never combined with this trope. A Good Way to Die is pretty much the polar opposite of this trope. As a Death Trope, all Spoilers will be unmarked and unconcealed ahead. Beware.
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- Akame ga Kill!: In the manga, the Big Bad Prime Minister Honest is caught by the enraged rebels after years of manipulating and oppressing the kingdom. Unleashing their rage upon the terrified, powerless and captive oppressor, they line up to injure and mutilate his body while he wails in terror, restrained to a table. The last we see of him, his limbs, genitals and nose have all been cut off, the blubbering man sobbing and pleading for his life.
- The extremely beautiful and sweet Kanako Tsutsutori. An Elder Bairn first chomps down on her neck, drawing a spray of blood and causing her to shriek, after which it rips off a chunk of a shoulder and drains her blood, killing her and casting her corpse down to the ground. Her dead body is then shown lying with her thighs spread and her skirt hiked up, exposing her purple panties, while her camisole top has been partially torn, exposing one of her breasts.
- Before the previously mentioned example occurs, Nene Motoe, after trying to escape an Elder Bairn by pushing her twin sister in its path, gets her just desserts by being hoisted up in the air, her underwear exposed, before being violently torn in half, starting at the crotch, screaming her lungs out all the while.
- Death Note has this happen at the end of the manga with Light. After spending the entire series as a megalomaniac with a serious god complex, he spends the final chapter going through a massive Villainous Breakdown that ends with him lying on the floor in a pool of his own blood, screaming and begging for someone to save him as Ryuk makes good on his promise in the first chapter and writes Light's name in his own Death Note. The anime at least lets him get the slip from the investigation team eventually to die more quietly somewhere else.
- Death Parade: Mayu Arita died from slipping in the shower and hitting her head.
- Dragon Ball Z: During the Frieza Saga, after being beaten to a pulp by Frieza and shot through the heart, Vegeta dies while crying his eyes out and begging Goku to kill Frieza and avenge the Saiyans.
- Fate/Zero: In life, Diarmuid never got the chance to fulfill his dream of serving his lord faithfully and dying with honor. When given another chance as the Servant Lancer to fight as a knight and serve his Master, history repeats itself when circumstances similar his first death leads to his second. Before he could finish his duel with Saber, Saber's Master holds the fiance of Lancer's Master hostage and forces him to use his remaining Command Spells to have Lancer commit suicide. He does this by stabbing himself with Gáe Dearg which causes him to slowly die in a pool of his own blood. His one wish of falling in battle like an honorable knight crushed, he ends up cursing his fate, the grail, and all those present as he dies.
- In Fullmetal Alchemist the Big Bad, who had previously almost always held himself with a stoic demeanour, is left weeping and begging to the in-universe God not to send him back beyond the gate he came from. His pleas fall on deaf ears and spends his last seconds screaming in terror.
- Incognito, the Big Bad of the first TV anime, is treated to the traditional form of impalement for Vlad Tepes' victims. That is to say: he's left with a spear jutting up his ass and coming out his mouth, atop the Tower of London for all to see.
- In the manga and OVA, The Major has his vampire soldiers kill his superior officer by eating the man's entrails while he's Bound and Gagged, dying a sobbing mess.
- Hunter × Hunter: While Chrollo Lucilfer was borrowing his Nen abilities, Hisoka effortlessly decapitated Kortopi as he was relieving himself on the john.
- Kakihara, the Villain Protagonist of Ichi the Killer has something of a Rasputinian Undignified Death: He's horrified to have to fight the ferocious Ichi but when he finally gets the guts to go and attack he triggers his opponents fury and a swift kick from Ichi's razor-bladed shoes leaves him stripped naked and with his dick cut in two. Not cut off, just mangled horribly and painfully. Following this, Kakihara decides he's had enough and tries to flee, managing to jump from the apartment building they were fighting on to end up hanging on another. Ichi pelts him with projectiles while he screams in terror before a bird finally comes to finish him off by shitting on his fingers holding himself up, causing him to lose his grip and fall to his death. Yeah...
- In Konosuba, Kazuma Satou sees what is apparently a truck about to hit a girl, so he rushes over and shoves her out of the way. He wakes up in the afterlife and assumes he sacrificed himself to save her and got run over. Aqua, the goddess who greets him, informs him that it was a slow moving tractor that was going to stop and the girl was in no danger. He suffered cardiac arrest out of fright because he thought he was about to be run over, and soiled himself. To add insult to injury, the doctors and his own family all laughed and mocked him for dying in such a pathetic way. At least he got to come back to life as a hero in a fantasy world.
- The Big Bad, Apos, in Mnemosyne is a Serial Rapist who wants nothing more than to violate Rin, The Heroine and devour the Time Spores of immortal women, killing them and enjoying the flavor of their agony in the process. When he's about to be absorbed by the tree Yggdrasil, Rin takes advantage of his helplessness to shove the Time Spore of a deceased immortal into his vaginanote before sending him off screaming into the depths of the abyss within Yggdrasil.
- Resident Corrupt Corporate Executive, Nobliss Gordon of Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans finally has fate catch up with him for all the evil he caused in the name of profit. While leaving his bodyguards to use the washroom, one of the titular orphans he had hurt in the past comes back to shoot him to death through the stall while he's sitting on the toilet.
- The stone giant Tessai from Ninja Scroll dies by cleaving his skull open with his own double edged blade after Jubei cuts off his fingers. On top of that, the reason he dies this way was because he had accidentally poisoned himself trying to rape Kagero, who's body is so toxic she can lethally poison a man with a kiss. The poisoning makes Tessai's stone skin fall apart and makes him reckless and demented, leaving himself open to attack and forgetting to catch the blade on its rebound.
- Magistrate Wolfram of Ookami no Kuchi: Wolfsmund is finally caught by rebel forces after subjecting countless men, women and children to Cruel and Unusual Deaths in the pass he governs. The masses he oppressed for so long roar in approval as he is sentenced to death by impalement through his ass until the stake comes out his mouth. He smugly tries to talk the rebel forces into sparing him, lest they face the wrath of his master, Duke Leopold until it becomes clear they won't barter with him and he brakes down screaming and crying until he is gagged and his punishment carried out. The execution itself is long and drawn out, with Wolfram holding a pained and terrified expression the whole time.
- Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The graceful, dignified Mami Tomoe, who gets overconfident in a fight with a witch. Said witch morphs into a giant head, which clamps its jaws down over Mami's face, eventually biting off and devouring Mami's head, throwing her twitching body to the ground. Then said head comes after the body and devours it too.
- When Johnny the Homicidal Maniac isn't giving a Cruel and Unusual Death, it's this. In his twitter, he mentions he killed someone with a cheeto.
- Cypher getting shot in New Mutants had shades of this. He died in the background from a gut shot while a massive battle was being waged.
- Baron Strucker in Secret Warriors.
- Garth Ennis likes these:
- Marseille, having learned that the organization he's been serving most of his life is a sham, and the heavily inbred descendant of Jesus dies when the Allfather, a man so enormously fat he caused a plane to fail a landing because he wasn't sitting in the middle is pushed from a helicopter, landing on them.
- The racist asshole sheriff was forced by Jesse's voice-of-God command to "go fuck himself", and committed suicide after he severed his penis and, well, fucked himself.
- Jesus did not die on the Cross. His resurrection and ascension into Heaven is a well-fabricated lie to cover up his escape. He lived until he was 48 years old and was ran over by a offal cart and then, in fact, died.
- Tulip's father Jake was shot in the back of the head while taking a shit in the wood. A fellow hunter confused him with a deer.
- The Punisher: The Russian is (eventually) defeated when Frank manages to trip his morbidly obese neighbor onto him and weighing him down for twenty minutes. His second, final death is better, dropped out of a plane while chained to a nuclear bomb, laughing all the while.
- In the side-story to The Authority, Kev, an important British government official (actually an alien in disguise) demands to be given a prostitute. Kev's team take him to one of their houses, where the girl freaks out and runs away to reveal the guy wearing garters, tights and an orange shoved up his ass. The team shove him into the basement as they've been followed by paparazzi. Unfortunately, it also turns out the house's owner had rescued and kept an adult male tiger in the basement...
- The Boys: Butcher reveals the less flattering details of superheroes deaths, including one who drowned in jizz. Another had a live hamster in his rectum.
- George W. Bush decapitated himself in a bizarre incident involving a chainsaw at his ranch in Texas.
- Incumbent President Robert "Dakota Bob" Shaefer was killed by a rabid wolverine released by Vic the Veep (he thought it was a pet rabbit). A Vough executive was chewed out for joking the animal was "the best at what he does".
- Fanatical Nazi superhero and Captain Marvel/Thor knockoff Stormfront was stomped to death, in true Skinhead fashion, by people representing the allied forces during World War II.
- Jennifer Blood: An Amoral Attorney is killed dressed in, again, tights and an orange up his ass, and seemingly while engaged in autoerotic asphyxiation.
- Few would have called Captain Mar-Vell's death undignified; he died with every important hero in the Marvel Universe, and even his hated enemies the Skrulls at his side, mourning and paying their respects. However, when his spirit was met in the afterlife years later, he was rather upset to have died of cancer and not having fallen in battle, being a Proud Warrior Race Guy.
- Some characters in Watchmen die with in some inconvenient ways. Dollar Bill was killed by a regular thug when his cape got stuck in a revolving door. The Silhouette was found dead with her lesbian lover hacked up in their bed. Masochistic supervillain Captain Carnage (who gets his kicks off of provoking superheroes into beating him up) died when tried this tactic on Rorschach, who promptly dropped him down an elevator shaft.
- In Spider-Verse an alternate version of Spider-Cat is drained of its life force by Bora after being used to taunt Brix that she got the kill and he didn't.
- All "Joker Venom" deaths in Batman qualify. You die with a huge grin on your face. This all but guarantees your funeral will have to be closed-casket, because otherwise the mourners will be screaming in terror or laughing their heads off.
- It's hard to imagine a more undignified death than having your gonads bit off by Lesbian Zombies from Outer Space.
- The Walking Dead: Father Gabriel's death is a mix between being undignified and Epic Fail. After finally being trusted to go out on the battlefield on his very first mission, Gabriel is assigned to be a lookout for Alexandria, but manages to immediately screw up by falling off his guard tower, breaking his leg, getting said broken leg caught on the ladder which suspends him in the air flailing helplessly while he desperately cries for help, and ultimately ends with him being found and Gutted Like a Fish by Beta. To add even more insult to injury, his corpse is then devoured by walkers.
- Cyclops, the first X-Man, leader and revolutionary, is believed by some to have died in his attempt to stop the Terrigen Mists from killing Mutants. Death of X reveals that he actually died by M-Pox, suffocating when he first encountered the Terrigen Mists. His death horrified Emma Frost so badly that she essentially created that lie.
- Kimura's death in All-New Wolverine isn't particularly embarrassing, but it's not pretty, and certainly not a grand final struggle between her and Laura. Instead, Laura takes advantage of the fact that for all her modifications and immunities, Kimura still needs to breathe, and unceremoniously drowns her in the ocean off Madripoor.
- This is a staple of Revenge Fics. If a character is hated enough by the creator to avoid bridges, their death is likely to be the culmination of a Humiliation Conga.
- A lot of deaths in the Homestuck fancomic Alabaster: The Doomed Session are ridiculous and demeaning, but the Award goes to the thousand guys who were killed during their orgy. Also, special mention to the trolls who managed to get impaled on Ophiuchus' ridiculous oversized horns.
- Hivefled: the top three are probably Dualscar's death via being raped with a gun barrel, Rasasi's drowning in a bucket of semen, and Vanate's death by prolapse of most of his digestive tract (his ghost is still lacking pants and forever trailing his guts behind him).
- In Massacre in the Dungeons Voldemort trips over a peacock and vents his rage by using the Killing Curse on it, sending an explosion of feathers into the air. He dies by choking on one.
- Jabba in Return of the Jedi is choked to death by a slave (Leia of course) using the very chain he restrained her with.
- From the same movie, and a major point of contention among fans, Boba Fett's demise. He gets unceremoniously knocked into the Sarlacc pit by a Han who can barely see. Which then belches loudly.
- In Amélie, the title character's mother dies when a tourist committing suicide via freefall lands on her.
- In Hot Rod, Rod had always thought his father died testing a jump for Evel Knievel. In reality, he choked on pie.
- In the 1966 all-star comic adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson's The Wrong Box, ten of the twenty competitors for the tontine fall victim to this in a series of vignettes at the beginning of the film. In order:
- Artillery sergeant Brian Allen Harvey orders his men to fire a cannon, oblivious to the fact that he is standing directly in the line of fire.
- Amateur falconer Sydney Whitcombe Sykes is attacked by his own bird when he gives the order to kill.
- Intrepid explorer Ian Scott Fife plants a Union Flag on a mountaintop which promptly gives way under him.
- Naval officer Leicester Young-Fielding is hit squarely in the face by the ceremonial bottle of champagne at the christening of a ship.
- Army officer Alan Frazer Scrope is sounding the charge on a bugle when a native arrow flies down the bell of the instrument.
- Industrialist James Whyte Wragg, investigating claims that his coal mine is unsound, is crushed by falling debris after he taps a support post with his cane.
- Big game hunter Oliver Pike Harmsworth tells his guide that he will not shoot a rhinoceros until it is actually charging, unaware that it has long since started doing so.
- Vyvyan Alistair Montague, upon dropping a handkerchief to signal the start of a pistol duel, is turned on and shot by the two duellers.
- Elderly, wheelchair-bound industrialist Derek Lloyd Peter Digby is pushed down a hill by his son, who wishes to inherit his fortune early.
- Newly-knighted Sir Robert Park Collingwood is accidentally decapitated during the conferral of his knighthood by Queen Victoria.
- "Ditto" Stiles, one of the High School teachers in the Nick Nolte/Ralph Macchio black comedy Teachers, suffers a fatal heart attack at his desk, in the middle of class. What makes his death qualify for this trope is that the class period ends, and three more class periods come and go, before anyone (be it a student or a fellow teacher) notices that he's dead.
- Pincus of Ghost Town acquired his ability to see ghosts after a near-death experience during a colonoscopy.
- Donald Gennaro from Jurassic Park getting eaten by a T-Rex while on the toilet.
- All of the jihadis in Four Lions end up blowing themselves up in stupid ways.
- The plot of World's Greatest Dad kicks off when the protagonist finds his Jerkass teenage son dead from auto-erotic asphyxiation and makes it look like a romantic suicide to avoid embarrassment.
- In Clerks, Randal's cousin Walter.
Dante: What an embarrassing way to die.
Randal: That's nothing compared to how my cousin Walter died.
Dante: How did he die?
Randal: He broke his neck.
Dante: That's embarrassing?
Randal: He broke his neck trying to suck his own dick!
- In Captain Ron, Martin and Katherine are having sex in the shower when: the door gets stuck, the drain gets clogged, and the shower handle breaks. The shower starts rapidly filling with water. They get rescued before they drown, but Katherine comments that would have been a very sucky way of dying.
- The Ruling Class begins with Ralph Douglas Christopher Alexander Gurney, the thirteenth Earl of Gurney, accidentally hanging himself attempting auto-erotic asphyxiation. While wearing a tutu.
- In This Is Spinal Tap, the band members are embarrassed to recall that their second drummer, Eric "Stumpy Joe" Childs, died of choking on vomit that might not have been his own.
- In Quantum of Solace, Elvis is killed by an explosion that destroys his pants.
- In "The Ballad of the King's Mercy," by Rudyard Kipling, the King of Afghanistan humiliates his Captain of the Guard and provokes him into an unsuccessful assassination attempt. His punishment is to be stoned almost to death...but not to die until he swallows his pride and calls out blessings on the King's name.
- In The Tomorrow Series, Chris goes missing for most of a book. At the end of said book, the group find his totalled car and decomposing body, and it becomes apparent that he got drunk and rolled the car. Most of the other main characters die from Heroic Sacrifices.
- Machine of Death has at least a couple.
- Many of the villains in Carl Hiaasen's novels. The stand-out is one who drowned by being held underwater by a sexually-deviant dolphin that wanted to have its way with him.
- Adrian Mole once met a somewhat mentally disturbed woman whose father died because a dog fell on his head in Torremolinos. Of course, everyone she tells this story will laugh about it, Adrian included.
- In one Warhammer novel, an empire soldier is killed by the way of being impaled on the spikes of an ork warboss helmet. As in, the ork warboss discarded the helmet and it just happened to land on the soldier.
- Graham Greene's humorous story "A Shocking Accident" involves a young man whose father died in an embarrassing manner- a pig fell out of a window and hit him on the head. The story describes the man's futile efforts to describe the circumstances of his father's death in a way that won't cause the listener to crack up with laughter. At the end of the story, he realizes that his girlfriend is the right partner for him when she listens to his description and responds seriously and with empathy. In a case of Strange Minds Think Alike, she inquires about what happened to the pig, which is the first thing the guy wondered when he was first told about his father's death.
- In Anansi Boys, Mr. Nancy's was singing karaoke at an island bar at the time of his death, and as he dies, his last act is to pull off the bikini top of a comely audience member. It's clear that Nancy thinks of this as a great joke, but when his son, the protagonist learns about it, he sees it as yet another example of his father being embarrassing.
- This occurs frequently in Tim Dorsey's Serge Storms books.
- In David Eddings' The Shining Ones, a hit is put out on one Avin Wargunsson: diminutive and little-loved heir to the Thalesian throne who was abusing his power and was a general embarrassment to his country. The people assigned to the job decide on a whimsical method. They bring in a barrel of expensive red wine, claiming it is for him, open the barrel, then proceed to stick him inside and nail the lid shut. Given the general dislike of the guy, he isn't found until several days later. He was described as still being significantly purple during the funeral, and despite their best efforts, the entire congregation ended up breaking down in laughter. Anyone else who heard the story eventually ended up doing the same; it was that funny to them. There was some regret by at least the two killers. They wasted a perfectly good barrel of wine!
- In Illuminatus!, one of the old Nazis (presumably Hitler), who is hoping to gain immortality through a mass-sacrifice ritual, dies on the toilet with his pants around his ankles when the plan is foiled.
- In Ian Fleming's The Man with the Golden Gun, Scaramanga is said to have forced one of his wounded victims to crawl over and lick his boots before he'd finish him off. (The film version of From Russia with Love has Grant threaten James Bond with this same death.)
- A Song of Ice and Fire:
- Tyrion kills his father while the latter is on the privy. He even shits himself when he dies. Making it worse, Tyrion killed him by shooting him in the bowels with an arrow. The dead prostitute in his bed didn't help.
- Viserys dies after getting molten gold dumped on his head by Khal Drogo, after whimpering and begging for his life.
- In the book Straight to Hell by Michelle Scott, Lilith Straight is killed while crossing the street because she was so busy texting a dirty picture to her stepsister that she walked in front of an oncoming car.
- In Ptolemy's Gate from The Bartimaeus Trilogy Bartimaeus is forcefully trapped in a silver tureen of fish soup and has a ceiling dropped on it to prevent him from prying the lid off, his final thoughts before blacking out are lamenting what a pathetic way to die this was. The death part is subverted when the soup insulates him from the effects of the silver long enough for his master to summon him back.
- James' parents in James and the Giant Peach were eaten by a rhinoceros. Not merely killed by a rhino (which is improbable enough given that they lived in southern England), but eaten by one.
- The poem "Problems with Hurricanes" by Víctor Hernández Cruz suggests that the biggest danger people face from hurricanes is the chance of being lethally impacted by flying fruit.
- Several characters in ghostgirl have this in their backstories. For example, Charlotte choked on a gummy bear while CoCo got drunk, vomited in her handbag, and ended up drowning in her vomit when she passed out into the bag.
- Arrow: Laurel Lance/ Black Canary dies while being helplessly immobilized by a telekinetic villain before getting Impaled with Extreme Prejudice by one of Green Arrow's arrows, but is taken to a hospital where she dies flat-lining right in front of all her friends.
- Game of Thrones:
- Life has not been very kind to House Stark in that they leave it harshly. Their deaths were so brutal that it came to a point where some of it disgusted even some of their enemies.
Robert Baratheon: (to Ned) What her [Daenerys] father did to your family, that was unspeakable!Jaime Lannister: (to Ned) Nobody deserve to die like that.
- Lord Rickard and Brandon's infamous cruel and unusual deaths which disgusted several characters long after it happened.
- Lyanna was said to be found bathing in her own blood before she succumbed. Subverted when it turned out this was a euphemism for her Death by Childbirth.
- Ned's execution has him give up his honor under false charges, with his head being mounted on a spike immediately after.
- Robb, Catelyn and Talisa's is as infamous as Lord Rickard and Brandon above, if not more. To specify, Robb's corpse was beheaded and has his direwolf's head sewn on it. Catelyn was stripped naked and thrown in a river, denied of her family's tradition of Viking Funeral. Talissa was repeatedly stabbed in the womb, while pregnant.
- Jon bleeds to death (if he's not dead already because of the stabbings) after he is unceremoniously executed by a few of his brothers at the Night's Watch. He got better, though.
- Rickon is fatally shot by an arrow to the heart, with his corpse being hit by a few more arrows immediately after.
- The Starks are not the only ones affected. Tywin Lannister himself was killed by his own abused and loathed son Tyrion via getting shot with a crossbow while sitting on a toilet. Unlike in the books, we never know if he indeed shit gold. While he even lampshades it, thanks to Tywin being Tywin, he is still able to bring forth some gravitas during the whole debacle.
- Roose Bolton. After four seasons worth of scheming, treachery, and consolidating power, the butcher of House Stark and ascendant Warden of the North is unceremoniously betrayed and murdered by his son after one taunt too many.
- Ramsey had the chance to die with dignity by engaging Jon in one on one combat but instead ran away when his army was defeated and attempted to snipe Jon at a distance with his bow. Ramsey ultimately meets his end getting devoured by his own hungry dogs much like his various victims over the years with Sansa telling him that no one will remember his name.
- Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish may have gone the entire show's run being utterly unflappable, scheming his way out of every little problem and grinding his enemies down through his various plots. But when he went down, he went down begging on his knees after getting outsmarted so horribly he couldn't even react properly.
- Life has not been very kind to House Stark in that they leave it harshly. Their deaths were so brutal that it came to a point where some of it disgusted even some of their enemies.
- In the classic The Mary Tyler Moore Show episode "Chuckles Bites the Dust", while dressed as "Peter the Peanut", Chuckles the Clown is killed by a rogue elephant who tried to "shell" him.
"You know how hard it is to stop after just one peanut!"
- In Monarch of the Glen, an eccentric elderly character is pike-fishing with dynamite, when his dog (which he was training to fetch unsuccessfully all episode) decides he wants the explosives back. His last words are "Oh."
- Dead Like Me:
- In the very first episode, George dies after getting hit by a toilet seat that broke off of Space Station MIR as it reentered Earth's atmosphere.
- The Gravelings caused Rube Goldberg-esque chain reactions that caused bizarre, comical, and very undignified deaths for many of the show's victims.
- NewsRadio: A coworker no-one can remember, "Ted", is asphyxiated after hours when his tie gets caught in the copy machine.
- In The X-Files episode "Clyde Bruckman's Final Repose", there's a psychic who can see how people are going to die. When Mulder asks how he's going to die, the psychic won't give a straight answer, but comments, "You know, there are worse ways to go, but I can't think of a more undignified way than autoerotic asphyxiation."
- Mad Men:
- Miss Ida Blankenship dies suddenly of unknown causes and has to have her copse removed from her desk by Joan and Pete while under afghan made by Harry's mother.
- Lane Pryce tries to kill himself by pumping car exhaust into his brand new Jaguar but the car will not start. He ends up hanging himself on his office door and is not discovered for 12 hours. The other partners have to force his body aside to open the door so they can cut him down. It's definitely not how the dignified British gentleman would want to be remembered.
- Roger Sterling's mother:
"How did she die?"
"She had a stroke, in the bathroom."
"Well, I asked, didn't I?"
- 1000 Ways to Die frequently showcases this trope, as the show is all about deaths that are unusual, gruesome, or both. Examples include men being killed in toilet-related accidents, and other people being killed by or during sexual acts.
- Supernatural has this exchange while Sam is stuck in a "Groundhog Day" Loop in which Dean dies everyday:
Dean: (on getting hit by a car): Did it look cool, like in the movies?Sam: You peed yourself.Dean: Of course I peed myself! Man gets hit by a car, you think he has full control over his bladder? Come on!
- Gigi Cestone from The Sopranos suffers a heart attack while constipated on a strip club toilet and surrounded by porn magazines. The series finale puts it best:
Tony (to Agent Harris): Gigi died takin' a shit!
- In Cheers, Carla's former Boston Bruin goalkeeper husband Eddie LeBec died after being run over by a Zamboni while trying to push a fellow cast member of the ice show he was reduced to working at out of the way. This death along with the subsequent revelation that he was a bigamist was deliberate on the part of the writers after Jay Thomas insulted Rhea Perlman's attractiveness on his radio show.
- In Frasier, Roz tells Frasier the following story:
"Lupe Vélez, the movie star in the '30s. Well, her career hit the skids, so she decided she'd make one final stab at immortality. She figured if she couldn't be remembered for her movies, she'd be remembered for the way she died. And all Lupe wanted was to be remembered. So, she plans this lavish suicide - flowers, candles, silk sheets, white satin gown, full hair and makeup, the works. She takes the overdose of pills, lays on the bed, and imagines how beautiful she's going to look on the front page of tomorrow's newspaper. Unfortunately, the pills don't sit well with the enchilada combo plate she sadly chose as her last meal. She stumbles to the bathroom, trips and goes head-first into the toilet, and that's how they found her."note
- In The Borgias, the king of France (having managed to get home safely after several encounters with the eponymous family, which is quite a feat in itself,) dies by accidentally bashing his head on a door lintel, which he somehow managed despite being very short. The two cardinals who bring this news to Rodrigo are trying unsuccessfully not to laugh, but Rodrigo himself doesn't see anything remotely funny about it, says the dead king had more steel in him than both the cardinals put together and gives them a penance for their lack of respect.
- True to the name, the "Stupid Deaths" skits on Horrible Histories showcase historical deaths that were extremely embarrassing.
- Doctor Who
- Would have happened to the Doctor in the new-series episode The Empty Child, had his ploy not worked.
Doctor: Go to your room! I mean it. I am very, very angry with you. I'm very, very cross. Go... To... Your... Room!
(monsters turn around and go)
Doctor: I'm really glad that worked. Those would have been terrible last words.
- Also barely averted by Jackie in The Christmas Invasion
Jackie Tyler: I'm gonna be killed by a Christmas tree!
- Would have happened to the Doctor in the new-series episode The Empty Child, had his ploy not worked.
- The Vorta Keevan in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine is introduced in a dramatic episode where he casually sacrifices his Jem'hadar troops to ensure his own survival. Then he dies in "The Magnificent Ferengi", in a chain of events that involves being hauled along to be traded for Quark's mother, accidentally shot during an argument over money, reanimated by remote control so they can trade him anyway, and finally left to continue bumping into a bulkhead on a deserted space station until either the electrical stimulation of his brain gives out, or his legs do. It's hard to feel sorry for him at any point in these proceedings.
- A Running Gag in Pearls Before Swine
- Rat's father died when a circus clown hit him with a seltzer bottle.
- Hobarth, a model train engineer, died when a balloon he was holding lifted him up into a ceiling fan.
- Leonard got his head stuck in a toilet and drowned.
- To say nothing of the embarrassing ways many, many Crocs have met their ends.
- In a Kat Williams stand-up comedy routine, he says that his neighborhood is so bad that even the squirrels are dangerous and that if he does ever get killed by a squirrel, please lie about it.
- Dave Chappelle claims he does not like those TV shows that feature real 911 calls because of the potential for embarrassment, acting out a hypothetical call made by himself where he is crying and shitting his pants in terror because there is a murderer in his house, followed by his hypothetical funeral afterwards where his friends look down on him for it, having heard the call on TV.
Friend 1: You hear Dave shit himself right before he died?
Friend 2: [shaking his head in disappointment] Went out cryin' like a little bitch.
- While Warhammer 40,000 is predictably full of horrifying and astonishingly unpleasant ways to die, the death of the Eldar Craftworld Lyanden's Avatar of Khaine (the physical manifestation of a literal god) stands out for sheer humiliation. Losing a desperate battle against the Tyranid swarm, the Eldar sacrifice one of their Exarchs to summon the Avatar, who challenges the leading Hive Tyrant to a duel- and is promptly stomped to death by twelve rampaging Carnifexes while the Tyrant ignores it.
- In Hedda Gabler, the Villain Protagonist Hedda tries to drive Lovborg into suicide by giving him an heirloom pistol and waxing eloquent about how to "do it beautifully", preferably via Pretty Little Headshot. When she later learns that he was accidentally shot in the bowels while visiting a brothel, she is appalled.
- One of the worst ways to die in a video game, period, happens in the Older Than the NES text adventure The Oregon Trail. One bad end you can come to is to die of dysentery. For those who missed that day in biology class, dysentery is an inflammatory condition of the intestines caused by bacteria, viruses, parasitic worms, or protozoa. Symptoms include diarrhea with blood, include fever, abdominal pain, and rectal tenesmus.note Suffice to say, it's a very unpleasant and disgusting way to die.
- The biggest Player Punch from the second game comes when Big Good Roland, who was also a playable character in the first game, is unceremoniously shot in the back by Handsome Jack.
- On a more humorous note, Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain Professor Nakayama from Sir Hammerlock's Big Game Hunt trips down a flight of stairs and dies shortly after the Vault hunters confront him at the end of the DLC.
- In Disgaea, Laharl's father King Krichevskoy apparently dies by choking on a black pretzelnote . In the Japanese version, he dies by choking on a dark manju; the localization change to pretzel is an obvious Shout-Out to the incident when US President George W. Bush choked on a pretzel and fainted. We later find out that this was slander, and Krichevskoy actually died from wounds from fighting Baal, the absurdly overlevelled Bonus Boss of the entire franchise.
- There are a couple of these in Ghost Trick, but the prize has to go to Lynne being crushed to death by a giant plastic chicken. And that's not even going in to the ways you can make some deaths into this, such as reclining a driver's seat, leaving him flailing helplessly on his back while his truck plows into a building, or Cabanela dying from a hard hat launched at his face at bullet speed. It Makes Sense in Context.
- In Halo: Reach some Spartans sacrifice their lives to blow up enemy motherships. Some kill their slayers while impaled on their energy sword. And some... get shot in the head running from cover to cover.
- If you're rude to Conrad Verner in Mass Effect 2 he eventually storms off. A later news report states that while attempting to catch some youths riding the top of a bus, he fell off, struck several cars, and fell into the turbine of a bio-mass recycling center. That may or may not be a euphemism for a sewage treatment plant.
- In Dangan Ronpa, this trope happens many, many times over. It is to be expected of a Deadly Game. In one example, Celes is supposed to be burned at the stake, and is even seen standing at her own pyre... and then Monokuma kills her via running her over with a firefighter truck.
- Devin Weston can have one of these, if the player chooses him to. A Corrupt Corporate Executive who uses his money and connections to bribe and intimidate the protagonists into doing a series of car theft jobs for him, then stiffs them on their final payoff just because he's important enough to do so. Later, when Michael thwarts another of his crooked business ventures, Weston sics his private army on them, then tries to turn the protagonists against each other. If ending C is taken, his private army is lured into an ambush and annihilated, and he's kidnapped from his mansion and stuffed into the trunk of his own luxury car, bound and gagged in his underwear, as the protagonists stand over him, taunting him over his failures to manipulate them and lecturing him about what an asshole he is and why America doesn't need men like him, before shoving him off a cliff. Shortly after, said car explodes (Which is a Call-Back to the 3D Era games, where cars that ended up upside down exploded.)
- Some of the Psychopaths in Dead Rising 3 get rather humilating deaths. Teddy is so shocked from Nick breaking into his room that he dies from a heart attack from his sedentary lifestyle. He then farts upon death. Twice. Darlene gets trapped underneath her scooter and chokes to death on her own vomit, while Dylan asphyxiates on the fumes from his incredibly phallic flamethrower, which even lets out one final puff as he dies.
- While Alastor does get somewhat dignified deaths in both Viewtiful Joe games, they're kind of undermined by him complaining in a whiny voice afterwards that he didn't get a bigger part and begging for more screentime.
- Shinji's death in Fate/EXTRA. He falls down, cries, and pleads with the protagonist for his life, citing that he's really only eight years old, and thus too young to die. Rider tells him that that's the way villains like them exit, making pathetic displays of themselves, despite the fact that she stays fairly composed. Later on, Julius seems like he has one of these, falling to his knees, refusing to accept the loss, and screaming in constant pain, though Assassin is amused that he finally found a Worthy Opponent. However, this is in fact a Disney Death. They die for real later, in a more dignified manner.
- Between the events of Shin Megami Tensei IV and Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse, it turns out that Navarre accidentally drowned himself in a river while peeking at a female hunter bathing.
- In Hitman (2016), you can spike your targets' drinks with rat poison, then follow them to the bathroom and drown them in the toilet bowl, while they're throwing up.
- In Don't Shit Your Pants, where the goal is to... well... typing "kill yourself", "suicide" or "die" will make the player kill themselves. In an aversion to No Dead Body Poops, it also causes the player to lose by making them shit their pants as they die due to loss of bowel control. Unless they took their pants off beforehand, in which case they shit on the floor as they die.
- This Irregular Webcomic! strip.
- In "[S] Wake", Dream Feferi barely has time to notice Jack before he unceremoniously slices her in two and leaves her for dead. The look on her face "kind of" diminishes the impact.
- Dream Nepeta was stabbed three times, then kicked over with a "DOOF" sound effect.
- In the same Flash (and the pages afterward), we also have Tavros, who challenged God Tier Vriska to a fight and lost immediately, despite being given a free shot—then was impaled on his own lance and pitched into an abyss to land hard enough to burst his new robo-legs with a look of dumb shock on his face.
- Equius himself died with the most idiotic look on his face after being strangled.
- Jade may well have topped all of the above: she was killed by bombs delivered via several tonnes of highly flammable shaving cream. SHAVING CREAM.
- In Unsounded, Stockyard starts off as an imposing and dignified crime boss. He dies while blubbering about his father and begging for a child to save him. The smoke eels in the area are quick to mock him for this.
- The Darwin Award, as noted, are pretty much built on this trope. With the added criterion that it has to be self-inflicted.
- A piece called Australia: The Confusing Country (widely suspected to have been written by Douglas Adams) advises against putting your arm down a wombat's burrow as the wombat will think its burrow is collapsing and push up; crushing the arm between the wombat and the burrow roof and causing you to bleed to death. It then adds, "This is considered the third most embarrassing known way to die, and Australians don't talk about it much."
- "Undignified Deaths" is a category in Chuck Shepherd's News Of The Weird column.
- Survival of the Fittest has had a few of these over its run. The most notable example would be that of Carson Baye's in v3, where he stops to take a dump... only to learn that the area he's in has become a dangerzone. Cue Oh, Crap!.
- Cracked gives us "The 5 Most Humiliating Ways the Wilderness Can Kill You".
- SCP Foundation
- Wikipedia's list of unusual deaths.
- Cyanide & Happiness videos, Speed Racist and Ted Bear.
- In The Savage Sword Of Sharona, Sharlatin was found stabbed to death on the floor of his bedroom by his slave girl. Engorgia was devoured by the Kharnivors which she used to control.
- Death Battle:
- In one of the biggest stomps in the show's history, the battle between Shadow and Mewtwo ends with Mewtwo erasing Shadow's mind so thoroughly that Shadow forgets about all his powers, and then skewering him with a giant spoon. Talk about humiliation.
- In Android 18 and Captain Marvel, the fight ends with 18 breaking both of Carol's arms in a homage to how she broke Super Saiyan Vegeta's arm, spiking her into the ground, and then, as Carol weakly struggles to stand up, she's Killed Mid-Sentence when 18 caves her skull in with her boot, all while smugly blowing off her opponent's previous boasts and leaving their corpse in the crater with its ass sticking up in the air.
- Dumb Ways to Die is an Australian PSA about keeping safe around trains. It's also Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
- They've added enough additional shorts by this point to justify creating a YouTube Channel
- Frequently Played for Laughs in Dragon Ball Z Abridged:
Jeice: Define "dignity", sir...
- After Captain Ginyu asks if Recoome died with dignity, the camera cuts to his unmoved body (whose buttocks are exposed due to a rip in his body suit) with the sound of flies buzzing.
- After being turned into a frog, instead of Ginyu being left to go free like in the original, Vegeta squashes him under his boot, like he wanted to in the original.
- It's later revealed that the main cast never bothered to bury Yamcha after he was killed by an exploding Saibaman. Because he's Yamcha. Even after he's revived with the Dragon Balls his rotting corpse is still sitting in the field. At least they kept Yajirobe from eating him.
- South Park loves this trope. In the episode "Reverse Cowgirl", Clyde's mom dies by falling in the toilet when the lid is left up. The pressure of the toilet sucks out her internal organs.
- Metalocalypse is another prime example: fans, employees, and other people who come into contact with Dethklok are constantly killed (or maimed) in some of the most ridiculous, unrealistic ways imaginable. This happens usually by accident.
- The end of the Warner Bros. cartoon "Rebel Without Claws" has Sylvester getting shot down by his own firing squad instead of the intended victim Tweety.
Sylvester: (to us) It's a good thing I've got nine lives. With this army, I'll need 'em!
- David Carradine died from auto-erotic asphyxiation and became the butt of blacker internet humor.
- Elvis Presley famously died in the bathroom, which got altered in the popular imagination to him dying while sitting on the toilet. Either way, it's hardly dignified.
- William the Conqueror, descendant of vikings and first Norman King of England, died from intestinal damage after his horse reared and he was slammed into the pommel of his saddle. The funeral was even more embarrassing than his death. For various reasons, the funeral was delayed and the already swollen body of the king got even bigger from expanding gasses. When they attempted to lower him into the stone coffin, his body wouldn't fit. So they tried to cram his body into it. It exploded. The putrid smell caused the mourners to flee and the rites were conducted hastily.
- Hundreds of people die each year by straining so hard to get a poo out, they burst a blood vessel in their brains.
- George II of Great Britain died roughly in this manner: after having his morning hot chocolate, he went to the royal loo to work on his morning exertions (which were always rather difficult, as the royal diet was rich in meats and low in fibre). However, instead of bursting a blood vessel in the brain he blew out the right ventricle of his heart; he was on the verge of an aortal aneurysm and the walls of his heart were rather weakened.
- Most of the entries in Wikipedia's List of unusual deaths.
- A number of rock stars, including Jimi Hendrix, John Bonham and Bon Scott, died by choking on their own vomit.
- Despite popular myth, Catherine the Great did not die from being crushed while having a horse lowered onto her with pulleys for erotic purposes. Nor was she so overweight that she shattered a toilet and died of blood loss from the resulting injuries. She did have a stroke on the toilet, but died in bed the next evening.
- On a related note, a mercifully unidentified individual had an unfortunate fatal accident at a ranch offering... very unusual services in Washington State demonstrated that a) going Out with a Bang is not always a Great Way to Go and b) it's surprising what there Ain't No Rule against in some jurisdictions. (Though the state government fixed that very soon afterwards.)
- There are more rumors surrounding the death of Attila the Hun's death than fan-rumors about deaths on Game of Thrones. Most historians agree he died during his wedding feast to his latest wife, Ildikó. (Far from his first.) While some claim she murdered him and as a result, was killed by his soldiers, this is unlikely. (Given the ruthlessness the Huns show to traitors, her fate would have been far worse.) A more likely reason was that he ate and drank too much at the feast and later suffered from internal bleeding or choked on his own blood, or maybe injured himself while drunk and bled to death. The most undignified rumor, however, was that he was into Casual Kink, and that Ildikó playfully punched him in the nose during sex, causing a nosebleed which made him choke until he choked to death. If true, this means one of the most dreaded and feared barbarian lords in history died after being punched in the nose. By a girl. During sex.
- Genghis Khan supposedly supposedly died from falling off his horse and landing on his head. Not really embarrassing, but kind of a lame death for such a feared leader
- British MP and "rising star" of Conservative Party Stephen Milligan died due to a mishap involving auto-erotic asphyxiation while wearing nothing but a pair of stockings and suspenders, with an electrical flex tied around his neck and a black bin liner over his head, with an orange segment in his mouth. This is what mostly likely inspired the The Authority and Jennifer Blood examples in the comic folder.