Playing With / Revenge by Proxy

Basic Trope: A character kills the friend or relative of someone he wants revenge on.
  • Straight: Jack accidentally killed Tom's wife, so Tom kills Jack's wife.
  • Exaggerated:
    • Tom kills everyone in Jack's family.
    • Jack is dead so Tom kills his family.
    • Tom starts killing people indiscriminately, thinking they're probably related to Jack somewhere along the line.
  • Downplayed:
    • Jack accidentally ran over Tom's cat, so Tom poisons Jack's dog.
    • Tom kills Jack's third cousin twice removed.
  • Justified:
    • The victims were accomplices, or are wittingly profiting from the original crime.
    • They both intended it. No one would expect it if they killed each other's wives.
    • Killing Jack isn't an option, for whatever reason.
    • Tom is a coward who wouldn't ever dare to confront Jack directly.
    • Tom wants Jack to feel the pain he felt when his wife died.
  • Inverted:
    • Avenging the Villain
    • Tom seduces Jack's wife and she ends up divorcing Jack.
    • Harry kills Jack's wife. Tom kills Harry on Jack's behalf because for some reason Jack can't.
    • Jack saves Tom's wife, so Tom saves Jack's wife.
  • Subverted:
    • Tom actually wants to eliminate the characters because of a prophecy but without Jack realizing it.
    • Tom finally has Jack's wife at gunpoint, but can't bring himself to kill an innocent person.
  • Double Subverted:
    • On the other hand, he considers the Revenge part of the fun; he could have worked out another way around the Prophecy.
    • Even though he hates himself for that, after a few moments of hesitation he shoots her anyway.
  • Parodied: Jack's wife is much stronger. Tom gets hospitalized trying to kill her.
  • Zig Zagged: ???
  • Averted: Tom goes only to the culprit himself.
  • Enforced: "We need a reason for Jack to go after Tom, and a Cynicism Catalyst is just the thing.."
  • Lampshaded: "Okay, seriously, I'm the one who wronged you, so why are you going after someone else?" "Because death is too good for you."
  • Invoked: Tom decides to murder Jack's wife, because he believes that two wrongs make a right.
  • Exploited: Jack suspects Tom might go after his wife, so he waits with her and when Tom shows up, he defeats, handcuffs him, and locks him up.
  • Defied: Tom sees and scorns the chance to kill the other character.
  • Discussed: Jack feels so guilty he tells his friend Arthur he'd deserve it if Tom killed him. Arthur points out that Tom might go after Jack's wife instead.
    Tom: The thing about you 'hero types' is that from the very beginning, you're willing to endure harm if it means getting what you want. You're willing to sacrifice yourself if need be, and so I can't truly frighten you with a threat on your life. But what about your family? Do you see them as expendable?
  • Conversed:
    Jack: "Let her go! She has nothing to do with the things between us!"
    Tom: "Why should I?! You took away everything I have, I'll take away everything you have!!"
  • Deconstructed: Tom's plot is foiled — and the saved characters sit about, in a place that Jack stole from Tom, eating food bought with money stolen from Tom, and talk about how much worse Tom was.
  • Reconstructed: Then again, Tom had no right to the stuff in the first place.

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