06:25:13 AM Apr 16th 2011
Examples removed for being actual fiction:
- "The Thousand-and-Second Tale of Scheherazade", by Edgar Allan Poe, runs on this trope, getting the titular princess beheaded after her canonical reprieve. Most of the examples listed are either common knowledge now or disproven.
- You sometimes see people with superpowers make a single stand against an army. You never see normal people do it. And yet, that is what one Viking did to an English army. He stood on a bridge with his axe and held off the entire army, on his own. It got to the point that they sent someone out in a boat to attack him from below the bridge, because they couldn't kill him. This is not something you will ever see in a movie—a single, normal person fighting an army to a standstill.
- That should be the Battle of Stamford Bridge, at least, according to a folk story. But since it's an extremely awesome story, then it must be true. May the internet be pleased.
- The Romans did it first. Behold the tale of Horatius Cocles.
- Also, Zhang Fei at the Battle of Chang Ban. Well, not quite, as he had a bit of help in real life, but the Romance of the Three Kingdoms / Dynasty Warriors version has him single-handedly defending the Chang Ban Bridge from 10,000 men, as well as literally scaring a general to death.
- And Zhang Liao's defending a castle aginast 100,000 enemy troops with only 8000 men.