Playing With / Due to the Dead

Basic Trope: Respect for the dead is a sign of morality, while desecrating the dead is a sign of immorality.
  • Straight: The hero buries the dead after a skirmish, and the villain throws the bodies to the vultures.
  • Exaggerated: Tombs, funerals, commemorations, etc. all are more important than any other duty to the hero, but the villain eats the dead.
  • Downplayed: The hero buries each body in its own grave and gives them full rites; the villain puts them together in a mass grave and says a few quick words before moving on to more pressing matters.
  • Justified: Failure lacerates the feelings of the living, and sometimes brings back the dead as ghosts.
  • Inverted:
    • The villain parades his mourning and arranges lavish funerals for his victims, where the hero leaves behind corpses to care for the living.
    • The Anti-Villain was driven by necessity to the deaths, and is deeply grieved, where the Knight Templar hero doesn't notice how he hurts the living.
  • Subverted:
    • Jack grieves so much over Jill than he doesn't even notice Janet.
    • It turns out that, in the villain's religion or culture, consumption by carrion eaters is considered the most honorable way of disposing of a body.
  • Double Subverted:
    • Janet doesn't have any claim on Jack's attention; she's just blaming Jill because she wants to blame someone.
    • But he knows full well that the dead people in question considered being eaten by ravens a horrible fate, and allows it anyway just to spite them.
  • Parodied: Mourning is a big business, pursued with no interest in the dead.
  • Zig Zagged: Jack grieves so excessively that he neglects the living, Jill ignores the dead, James practices strange customs that no one can recognize, Jeff sticks stolidly to the local custom and doesn't recognize anyone else's.
  • Averted: No one dies in the story, so no one notices what people do.
  • Enforced: "We can't let Bob just ignore the dead girl's body or he'll come across as a callous monster and lose the audience's sympathy."
  • Lampshaded: "Yes. Yes, I'm buying flowers, and yes I'm driving to the cemetery to put them on Mom's grave. Good guys do that."
  • Invoked: "We have to bury them, what sort of people do you think we are?"
  • Exploited: The villain makes sure to slaughter any innocents in his path as he flees the hero, knowing that the hero will feel compelled to give them final rites and a proper burial.
  • Defied: "I'm going to save the Damsel in Distress even if the bodies get eaten by wild animals!"
  • Discussed: "I can't believe he goes out there every week. He's so devoted."
  • Conversed: "Okay.. yep.. cemetery. Lots of people. There's one kneeling down gently brushing the dirt off a tombstone.. that must be our good guy."
  • Deconstructed: Mourning is a way for Hypocrites to parade their concern about people they never cared about, living, and empty forms.
  • Reconstructed: Characters may truly be concerned for those where it did not show publicly — perhaps they were alienated from the dead character and are doubly grieved that they can never make up in this life — and the forms of mourning give structure to people suffering from such emotions they can not think of what to do.

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