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* In ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of [[CrazySurvivalist Harlan]] shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.

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* In ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' ''Film/WarOfTheWorlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of [[CrazySurvivalist Harlan]] shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.


* In ''Film/War of the Worlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of [[CrazySurvivalist Harlan]] shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.

to:

* In ''Film/War of the Worlds'' ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of [[CrazySurvivalist Harlan]] shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.


* In ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of [[CrazySurvivalist Harlan]] shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.

to:

* In ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' ''Film/War of the Worlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of [[CrazySurvivalist Harlan]] shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.


* In ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of CrazySurvivalist Harlan shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.

to:

* In ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of CrazySurvivalist Harlan [[CrazySurvivalist Harlan]] shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.


* In ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of CrazySurvivalist Harlan shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing that they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.

to:

* In ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of CrazySurvivalist Harlan shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing that they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.

Added DiffLines:

* In ''Film/WaroftheWorlds'' when Tom Cruise and his daughter (Dakota Fanning) take refuge in the basement of CrazySurvivalist Harlan shortly after his son is killed in a doomed military operation. Harlan, gone [[ObfuscatingInsanity insane]] after realizing that they were surrounded by the aliens, decides to tunnel his way out toward the city but instantly unsettles Tom Cruise due to the noise and his daughter's safety and kills Harlan.


In essence, the pragmatist must die because he is the most dangerous character in the work: his mere existence challenges the will of the god of his universe, The Author Himself. If the pragmatist gets free rein, then the author cannot tell the story in the way that he wishes, and so [[WriterOnBoard he will eliminate the pragmatist at the earliest possible opportunity]].

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In essence, the pragmatist must die because he is the most dangerous character in the work: his mere existence challenges the will of the god of his universe, The Author Himself. If the pragmatist gets free rein, then the author cannot tell the story in the way that he wishes, and so [[WriterOnBoard [[DivineIntervention he will eliminate the pragmatist at the earliest possible opportunity]].


* ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' had an episode where the kids all get stuck on a bus teetering over the edge of a cliff. The only reason they don't leave is due to a fear of a monster outside (which the driver made up). The only child (who also happens to be wearing a RedShirt) to leave the bus promptly gets eaten by said monster.

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* ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' had an episode where the kids all get stuck on a bus teetering over the edge of a cliff. The only reason they don't leave is due to a fear of a monster outside (which the driver made up). The only child (who also happens to be wearing a RedShirt) to leave that questions the existence of the monster and leaves the bus promptly [[RealAllAlong gets eaten by said monster.monster]].


First, it serves as an easy way to bring up and dismiss 'obvious' solutions, often via what amounts to a strawman -- it often wouldn't be a very long movie if the pragmatic character calls the authorities, has everyone sit together someplace safe until they arrive, and resolves everything in the first half-hour, would it? So the pragmatic character has to be dealt with, often accompanied by [[{{TheWarOnStraw}} excessive vilification]] to try and [[StrawVulcan tar their sensible ideas along with them]]. NeverRecycleYourSchemes is applied in spades here, too -- often the pragmatic character will be shown attempting to do some obvious thing that could ruin the movie (call the cops, [[ClosedCircle leave the area]], [[NeverSplitTheParty keep everyone from splitting up]], whatever); they'll fail and die gruesomely, and nobody will ever mention the pragmatic solution [[ShownTheirWork again]].

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First, it serves as an easy way to bring up and dismiss 'obvious' solutions, often via what amounts to a strawman -- it often wouldn't be a very long movie if the pragmatic character calls the authorities, has everyone sit together someplace safe until they arrive, and resolves everything in the first half-hour, would it? So the pragmatic character has to be dealt with, often accompanied by [[{{TheWarOnStraw}} excessive vilification]] to try and [[StrawVulcan tar their sensible ideas along with with]] [[ReminderofImpossibility them]]. NeverRecycleYourSchemes is applied in spades here, too -- often the pragmatic character will be shown attempting to do some obvious thing that could ruin the movie (call the cops, [[ClosedCircle leave the area]], [[NeverSplitTheParty keep everyone from splitting up]], whatever); they'll fail and die gruesomely, and nobody will ever mention the pragmatic solution [[ShownTheirWork again]].


First, it serves as an easy way to bring up and dismiss 'obvious' solutions, often via what amounts to a strawman -- it often wouldn't be a very long movie if the pragmatic character calls the authorities, has everyone sit together someplace safe until they arrive, and resolves everything in the first half-hour, would it? So the pragmatic character has to be dealt with, often accompanied by [[{{TheWarOnStraw}} excessive vilification]] to try and [[StrawVulcan tar their sensible ideas along with them]]. NeverRecycleYourSchemes is applied in spades here, too -- often the pragmatic character will be shown attempting to do some obvious thing that could ruin the movie (call the cops, [[ClosedCircle leave the area]], [[NeverSplitTheParty keep everyone from splitting up]], whatever); they'll fail and die gruesomely, and nobody will ever mention the pragmatic solution again.

to:

First, it serves as an easy way to bring up and dismiss 'obvious' solutions, often via what amounts to a strawman -- it often wouldn't be a very long movie if the pragmatic character calls the authorities, has everyone sit together someplace safe until they arrive, and resolves everything in the first half-hour, would it? So the pragmatic character has to be dealt with, often accompanied by [[{{TheWarOnStraw}} excessive vilification]] to try and [[StrawVulcan tar their sensible ideas along with them]]. NeverRecycleYourSchemes is applied in spades here, too -- often the pragmatic character will be shown attempting to do some obvious thing that could ruin the movie (call the cops, [[ClosedCircle leave the area]], [[NeverSplitTheParty keep everyone from splitting up]], whatever); they'll fail and die gruesomely, and nobody will ever mention the pragmatic solution again.
[[ShownTheirWork again]].


* In the ''WesternAnimation/LoveDeathAndRobots'' short, "Lucky 13", three dropships land to deploy their ground troops when they're suddenly ambushed by enemy fighters. After the first is destroyed in the initial attack, the pilot of the second [[DirtyCoward tries to take off immediately, leaving their soldiers behind]] only to get immediately shot down when the fighters make another pass.
* ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' had an episode where the kids all get stuck on a bus teetering over the edge of a cliff. The only reason they don't leave is due to a fear of a monster outside (which the driver made up). The only child (who also happens to be wearing a RedShirt) to leave the bus promptly gets eaten by said monster.



* ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' had an episode where the kids all get stuck on a bus teetering over the edge of a cliff. The only reason they don't leave is due to a fear of a monster outside (which the driver made up). The only child (who also happens to be wearing a RedShirt) to leave the bus promptly gets eaten by said monster.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/LoveDeathAndRobots'' short, "Lucky 13", three dropships land to deploy their ground troops when they're suddenly ambushed by enemy fighters. After the first is destroyed in the initial attack, the pilot of the second [[DirtyCoward tries to take off immediately, leaving their soldiers behind]] only to get immediately shot down when the fighters make another pass.


* ''Series/FatherBrown'': In "Crackpot of the Empire", Father Brown and a number of others are invited to a NastyParty in an abandoned mill. When it is revealed what is happening, one of the guests--a pompous, bullying, autocrat--demands that they find a way out and orders everyone to search. When a freight elevator is found, he shoves his way past the others to be the first on board. However, the killer has anticipated his actions and the lift is rigged to crash straight into the basement, killing him.
* The ''Series/MastersOfHorror'' episode "Dance of the Dead" did this, although the victim's pragmatic decision was unquestionably one of the coldest things on this list. A mother of two sold her older daughter, who was a strung-out junkie in the process of overdosing to a man who would reanimate her lifeless body to dance in his freak show, so that she could support her younger daughter. In the end she was killed and the surviving daughter traded the mother's body for the sister's so that the sister could be buried.
* On ''Series/StargateAtlantis'', the heroes frequently ShootTheDog as needed (although it sometimes seems they do it [[DesignatedHero even when a perfectly workable and non-morally compromising solution is available]]). Doing so also [[WhatTheHellHero frequently comes back to bite them in the ass]] a season or so later. Oddly, the otherwise highly GenreSavvy characters don't seem to have picked up on this pattern yet.
** This turned up in ''Series/StargateSG1'' as well, although not as often.



* On ''Series/StargateAtlantis'', the heroes frequently ShootTheDog as needed (although it sometimes seems they do it [[DesignatedHero even when a perfectly workable and non-morally compromising solution is available]]). Doing so also [[WhatTheHellHero frequently comes back to bite them in the ass]] a season or so later. Oddly, the otherwise highly GenreSavvy characters don't seem to have picked up on this pattern yet.
** This turned up in ''Series/StargateSG1'' as well, although not as often.
* The ''Series/MastersOfHorror'' episode "Dance of the Dead" did this, although the victim's pragmatic decision was unquestionably one of the coldest things on this list. A mother of two sold her older daughter, who was a strung-out junkie in the process of overdosing to a man who would reanimate her lifeless body to dance in his freak show, so that she could support her younger daughter. In the end she was killed and the surviving daughter traded the mother's body for the sister's so that the sister could be buried.
* ''Series/FatherBrown'': In "Crackpot of the Empire", Father Brown and a number of others are invited to a NastyParty in an abandoned mill. When it is revealed what is happening, one of the guests--a pompous, bullying, autocrat--demands that they find a way out and orders everyone to search. When a freight elevator is found, he shoves his way past the others to be the first on board. However, the killer has anticipated his actions and the lift is rigged to crash straight into the basement, killing him.


* ''Literature/{{Daemon}}'': [[TheHeavy The Major]], and by proxy the entire anti-Daemon movement. [[KickTheMoralityPet Shooting Merritt]] to [[KilledToUpholdTheMasquerade Uphold the Masquerade]] hurts him in numerous ways that lead to the end of pre-Daemon civilization. Obviously it costs him a skilled and determined operative, but not only does it also lead to the {{Heel Face Turn}}s of first Ross and ultimately Phillips, and martyr Merrit in the eyes of the darknet, but it also pisses off Loki so badly that he vows to kill the Major at any cost. In short, the entire plot of ''Freedom™'' occurs because he decided preserving the Masquerade was more important than capturing a OneManArmy so deranged even the darknet eventually censures him.



* ''Literature/{{Daemon}}'': [[TheHeavy The Major]], and by proxy the entire anti-Daemon movement. [[KickTheMoralityPet Shooting Merritt]] to [[KilledToUpholdTheMasquerade Uphold the Masquerade]] hurts him in numerous ways that lead to the end of pre-Daemon civilization. Obviously it costs him a skilled and determined operative, but not only does it also lead to the {{Heel Face Turn}}s of first Ross and ultimately Phillips, and martyr Merrit in the eyes of the darknet, but it also pisses off Loki so badly that he vows to kill the Major at any cost. In short, the entire plot of ''Freedom™'' occurs because he decided preserving the Masquerade was more important than capturing a OneManArmy so deranged even the darknet eventually censures him.


* In the new ''Film/DawnOfTheDead2004,'' the security guard who wanted to barricade themselves in the mall, rather than letting others in at risk of also letting zombies in, died near the end, after having been [[RedemptionEqualsDeath "redeemed."]] Tellingly, he was a CrazySurvivalist who prioritized the survival of himself and the three guards over the other refugees, even making them sleep in a separate and locked store for the trio's protection. Granted, he was a huge dick, but one of them ''was'' a latent ZombieInfectee.



* In the new ''Film/DawnOfTheDead2004,'' the security guard who wanted to barricade themselves in the mall, rather than letting others in at risk of also letting zombies in, died near the end, after having been [[RedemptionEqualsDeath "redeemed."]] Tellingly, he was a CrazySurvivalist who prioritized the survival of himself and the three guards over the other refugees, even making them sleep in a separate and locked store for the trio's protection. Granted, he was a huge dick, but one of them ''was'' a latent ZombieInfectee.
* In ''Film/TheReturnOfTheLivingDead'', the characters are finally killed because they decide they can't deal with the zombies themselves, and decide to risk prosecution by calling the military. The military nukes the whole town...take that as you will.



* In ''Film/TheReturnOfTheLivingDead'', the characters are finally killed because they decide they can't deal with the zombies themselves, and decide to risk prosecution by calling the military. The military nukes the whole town...take that as you will.

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* In ''Film/TheReturnOfTheLivingDead'', the characters are finally killed because they decide they can't deal Justified in ''Film/TheGingerdeadMan.'' The RichBitch comes up with the zombies themselves, entirely sensible option of leaving the bakery where the [[AttackOfTheKillerWhatever homicidal gingerbread man]] is hiding. Unfortunately, the monster is clever enough to have trapped all the exits, and decide she is paid for her pragmatism with a knife to risk prosecution by calling the military. The military nukes the whole town...take that as you will.face.



* Classic example in ''Film/JurassicPark''. Just before the ''Tyrannosaurus rex'' breaks out of its paddock, AmoralAttorney and DirtyCoward Gennaro panics at the first sight of the beast and flees into a nearby toilet, leaving Hammond's terrified grandchildren in the car by themselves. The giant predator begins attacking the car and ends up flipping it, trapping them inside, and prompting Grant and Malcolm to try and distract it with flares. The ''T. rex'' catches on to Malcolm and begins chasing him towards the toilet where Gennaro is hiding, demolishing the straw structure and knocking Malcolm under the bales, leaving Gennaro to face a particularly well-deserved and humiliating death when the ''T. rex'' finds him sitting on the can and devours him. He's the only person who ''doesn't'' survive the encounter.
* In ''Film/JurassicWorld'' we have the Paddock 11 supervisor, Nick. Although portrayed as a SurveillanceStationSlacker and a FatIdiot, he is the only one of the three men (which includes TheHero) inside the paddock who notices ''Indominus rex'' is about to cut them off as they run for the human-sized door. So he goes instead for the big maintenance door which is about to become the sole avenue of escape, managing to be the first person to [[HopeSpot get free]] and [[ConcealmentEqualsCover find somewhere to hide]]. [[spoiler:He untentionally lets ''I. rex'' free in the process, and one of the first things she does is knock aside the truck he's hiding behind and eat him.]]



* Justified in ''Film/TheGingerdeadMan.'' The RichBitch comes up with the entirely sensible option of leaving the bakery where the [[AttackOfTheKillerWhatever homicidal gingerbread man]] is hiding. Unfortunately, the monster is clever enough to have trapped all the exits, and she is paid for her pragmatism with a knife to the face.



* Classic example in ''Film/JurassicPark''. Just before the ''Tyrannosaurus rex'' breaks out of its paddock, AmoralAttorney and DirtyCoward Gennaro panics at the first sight of the beast and flees into a nearby toilet, leaving Hammond's terrified grandchildren in the car by themselves. The giant predator begins attacking the car and ends up flipping it, trapping them inside, and prompting Grant and Malcolm to try and distract it with flares. The ''T. rex'' catches on to Malcolm and begins chasing him towards the toilet where Gennaro is hiding, demolishing the straw structure and knocking Malcolm under the bales, leaving Gennaro to face a particularly well-deserved and humiliating death when the ''T. rex'' finds him sitting on the can and devours him. He's the only person who ''doesn't'' survive the encounter.
* In ''Film/JurassicWorld'' we have the Paddock 11 supervisor, Nick. Although portrayed as a SurveillanceStationSlacker and a FatIdiot, he is the only one of the three men (which includes TheHero) inside the paddock who notices ''Indominus rex'' is about to cut them off as they run for the human-sized door. So he goes instead for the big maintenance door which is about to become the sole avenue of escape, managing to be the first person to [[HopeSpot get free]] and [[ConcealmentEqualsCover find somewhere to hide]]. [[spoiler:He untentionally lets ''I. rex'' free in the process, and one of the first things she does is knock aside the truck he's hiding behind and eat him.]]


* Jeff, in Scott Smith's ''Film/TheRuins''. From the beginning, he is painted as something of a Jerkass due to his cold and calculating nature. In retrospect, this makes him seem like the ideal hero of the situation after the horror kicks in at the second act. Turns out he embodies this trope as well as DecoyProtagonist. He is certainly pragmatic, what with being a medical student and all, and when one of the protagonists (the non-English speaking Woobie of the cast), becomes horribly injured, it is he who suggests an improvised amputation of ''both'' that character's legs, in order to prevent infection. Naturally, given their limited resources, his friends reject this idea. He is also the one later on who makes the discovery that this is the ''least'' of their worries, namely the ManEatingPlant covering the hill they are trapped on. After a few more deaths, he ''additionally'' suggests cooking and eating the bodies of their fallen friends, in light of the fact they have next to no food or water. The remaining survivors are not thrilled with the idea, and neither is the audience, despite him simply demonstrating the need to survive. One could label Jeff as a CrazySurvivalist, but when you compare him the other heroes, he seems to be the only one with a brain. Naturally, he is not rewarded for it; despite attempting the only logical solution of trying to sneak past their Mayan captors at nightfall. True to the trope, it doesn't work, and he takes 3 fatal arrows for his troubles, as well as being finished off by the sinister vines.

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* Jeff, Jeff in Scott Smith's ''Film/TheRuins''. From the beginning, he is painted as something of a Jerkass due to his cold and calculating nature. In retrospect, this makes him seem like the ideal hero of the situation after the horror kicks in at the second act. Turns out he embodies this trope as well as DecoyProtagonist. He is certainly pragmatic, what with being a medical student and all, and when one of the protagonists (the non-English speaking Woobie of the cast), becomes horribly injured, it is he who suggests an improvised amputation of ''both'' that character's legs, in order to prevent infection. Naturally, given their limited resources, his friends reject this idea. He is also the one later on who makes the discovery that this is the ''least'' of their worries, namely the ManEatingPlant covering the hill they are trapped on. After a few more deaths, he ''additionally'' suggests cooking and eating the bodies of their fallen friends, in light of the fact they have next to no food or water. The remaining survivors are not thrilled with the idea, and neither is the audience, despite him simply demonstrating the need to survive. One could label Jeff as a CrazySurvivalist, but when you compare him the other heroes, he seems to be the only one with a brain. Naturally, he is not rewarded for it; despite attempting the only logical solution of trying to sneak past their Mayan captors at nightfall. True to the trope, it doesn't work, and he takes 3 fatal arrows for his troubles, as well as being finished off by the sinister vines.

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