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Compare UselessProtagonist, SuperLoser and SuperZeroes, the latter being the comedic version. Contrast InvincibleHero. Usually falls prey to WhatMeasureIsANonBadass, and may result in DarknessInducedAudienceApathy. Also see IneffectualSympatheticVillain, the evil counterpart.

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Compare UselessProtagonist, HeroicWannabe, SuperLoser and SuperZeroes, the latter being the comedic version. Contrast InvincibleHero. Usually falls prey to WhatMeasureIsANonBadass, and may result in DarknessInducedAudienceApathy. Also see IneffectualSympatheticVillain, the evil counterpart.


%%* Film/TheThreeStooges. Nobody can fail as epically as they can.

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%%* Film/TheThreeStooges.* Film/TheThreeStooges in spades; no matter what kind of situation you place them in, they will always find a way to completely botch up the given task in their own indomitable style. Nobody can fail as epically as they can.


** Anytime an army is victorious over Chaos could count as this, as the Ruinous Powers are actually ''strengthened'' whether or not they win (one is worshipped whenever blood is spilled, another by both pain and pleasure, one has so many {{Xanatos Gambit}}s running that the failure of one just means another can now function, etc.).

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** Anytime an army is victorious over Chaos could count as this, as the Ruinous Powers are actually ''strengthened'' whether or not they win (one is worshipped whenever blood is spilled, another by both pain and pleasure, one has so many {{Xanatos Gambit}}s {{plan}}s running that the [[XanatosGambit failure of one just means another can now function, function]], etc.).


* It's easy to miss, but Ash doesn't win a single Pokemon battle throughout the entirety of ''Theatre/PokemonLive''. He's knocked out by Jigglypuff's song, and Giovanni soundly defeats Pikachu.

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* It's easy to miss, but Ash doesn't win a single Pokemon battle throughout the entirety of ''Theatre/PokemonLive''. He's knocked out by Jigglypuff's song, and Giovanni soundly defeats Pikachu. The only reason he makes it to the end is Mewtwo's sudden appearance.


** In the base game, one member investigates a house, with the help of the Dragonborn, where he thinks daedra worshippers are hiding. Only too late does he discover that said house is being watched over by Molag Bal, one of the Daedric Princes (essentially gods among the daedra), and who forces both him and the Dragonborn to fight each other to the death.

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** In the base game, one member investigates a house, with the help of the Dragonborn, where he thinks daedra worshippers are hiding. Only too late does he discover that said house is being watched over by Molag Bal, one of the Daedric Princes (essentially gods among the daedra), and who Molag Bal forces both him and the Dragonborn to fight each other to the death.

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** The Huntsman is something of a downplayed example, as he'd probably be very competent... if he ever got to do anything.


** Much like Brock, Dr. Orpheus initially seems like anything but this trope, being genuinely a highly skilled sorcerer with a multitude of arcane powers. However, it eventually gets pointed out that he's had to spend his whole life studying to acquire his mystic abilities, neglecting every other aspect of his life, and with them he's ultimately accomplished... absolutely nothing.



* The titular character from ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'' zigzags with this trope. While she manages to save the day a number of times and defeat the [[ArcVillain Arc Villains]], she makes more than a few mistakes. During the first two seasons, she makes a lot of mistakes partly due to how she was raised. During the third season, she matures and learns from her previous mistakes along with playing a vital role in restoring the Air Nation, but the trope is played straight towards the end of the season. [[spoiler:The Red Lotus capture her twice, and her plan to rescue the airbenders almost completely failed. After she is poisoned by the Red Lotus, she is able to prevent them from killing her in her Avatar State right away, but she ultimately needs help from Jinora and the other airbenders to defeat Zaheer. As a result of being poisoned during her capture, she is crippled and it takes her three years to fully recover. This continues into Season Four, where after finally recovering her ability to walk (which in itself was a struggle), she is unable to get back into the swing of fighting right away. This leads to her getting beaten up on multiple occasions in the first half of the season, including by Toph, Kuvira, and a few random earthbenders.]] Ultimately, Korra subverts this trope during the second half of Season Four between [[spoiler: saving Prince Wu from Kuvira's forces, managing to overcome her PTSD by facing Zaheer, taking up a leadership position against Kuvira's forces, and ultimately defeating Kuvira and convincing her to surrender]].

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* The titular character from ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'' zigzags with this trope. While she manages to save the day a number of times and defeat the [[ArcVillain Arc Villains]], she makes more than a few mistakes. During the first two seasons, she makes a lot of mistakes partly due to how she was raised. During the third season, she matures and learns from her previous mistakes along with playing a vital role in restoring the Air Nation, but the trope is played straight towards the end of the season. [[spoiler:The Red Lotus capture her twice, and her plan to rescue the airbenders almost completely failed. After she is poisoned by the Red Lotus, she is able to prevent them from killing her in her Avatar State right away, but she ultimately needs help from Jinora and the other airbenders to defeat Howedefeat Zaheer. As a result of being poisoned during her capture, she is crippled and it takes her three years to fully recover. This continues into Season Four, where after finally recovering her ability to walk (which in itself was a struggle), she is unable to get back into the swing of fighting right away. This leads to her getting beaten up on multiple occasions in the first half of the season, including by Toph, Kuvira, and a few random earthbenders.]] Ultimately, Korra subverts this trope during the second half of Season Four between [[spoiler: saving Prince Wu from Kuvira's forces, managing to overcome her PTSD by facing Zaheer, taking up a leadership position against Kuvira's forces, and ultimately defeating Kuvira and convincing her to surrender]].


* The Deputy in ''VideoGame/FarCry5'': despite undoing most of Joseph’s plans and schemes, none of the endings see them actually defeat him. Even worse, in the canonical ending, Joseph brainwashes them- the results of which can be seen in ''VideoGame/FarCryNewDawn'' as the Judge.



* The Deputy in ''VideoGame/FarCry5'': despite undoing most of Joseph’s plans and schemes, none of the endings see them actually defeat him. Even worse, in the canonical ending, Joseph brainwashes them- the results of which can be seen in ''VideoGame/FarCryNewDawn'' as the Judge.


* The Deputy In ''VideoGame/FarCry5'': despite undoing most of Joseph’s plans and schemes, none of the endings see them actually defeat him. Even worse, in the canonical ending, Joseph brainwashes them- the results of which can be seen in ''VideoGame/FarCryNewDawn'' as the Judge.

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* The Deputy In in ''VideoGame/FarCry5'': despite undoing most of Joseph’s plans and schemes, none of the endings see them actually defeat him. Even worse, in the canonical ending, Joseph brainwashes them- the results of which can be seen in ''VideoGame/FarCryNewDawn'' as the Judge.


** In ''Dawnguard'' they try to take on the Volkihar clan of vampires of screen. Not realizing that they are far, far stronger than any of those they've dealt with before. Resulting in the headquarters and leaders of the Skyrim branch of the order being wiped out.

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** In ''Dawnguard'' they try to take on the Volkihar clan of vampires of screen. Not realizing that they are far, far stronger than any of those they've dealt with before. Resulting in the headquarters and leaders of the Skyrim branch of the order being wiped out. In a quest if you side with the Dawnguard, another of their members gets enthralled by a sorceress and brainwashes the rest of his party into doing her bidding.


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* The Deputy In ''VideoGame/FarCry5'': despite undoing most of Joseph’s plans and schemes, none of the endings see them actually defeat him. Even worse, in the canonical ending, Joseph brainwashes them- the results of which can be seen in ''VideoGame/FarCryNewDawn'' as the Judge.


* While Clare from ''Manga/{{Claymore}}'' is introduced as a badass demon hunter with a cold attitude, it appears most of the reason for her existence the entire rest of the series is to show how much more awesome her comrades are than her.

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* While Clare from ''Manga/{{Claymore}}'' is introduced as a badass demon hunter with a cold attitude, it appears most of the reason for her existence the entire rest of the series is to show how much more awesome her comrades are than her. This is in huge contrast to Vegeta who despite suffering from the WorfEffect all the time still manages to show a much stronger performance than Goku overall.


** Goku has been inflicted with this since ''Anime/DragonBallZBattleOfGods'', despite all the new amazing power-ups he has achieved throughout the new era of ''Dragon Ball''. He loses twice to Beerus, he loses to Freeza in ''Anime/DragonBallZResurrectionF'' and only manages to kill Freeza thanks to a DeusExMachina. However, this is PyrrhicVictory as Goku has a great desire to defeat his enemies in a fair one-on-one fight, and him killing a Freeza was a cheap shot that he didn't earn by himself. This trend continues in the ''Super'' anime, where he manages to lose ''twice'' in the Tournament of the Gods of Destruction, gets another PyrrrhicVictory against Copy-Vegeta (Monaka is the one who saved the day, not Goku), he never wins against Black or Zamasu, and in the Tournament of Power, [[spoiler:Goku ultimately doesn't win the tournament and has to take down Jiren in a mutual triple ring-out with Freeza's help]]. In ''Anime/DragonBallSuperBroly'', Goku gets his ass whooped by Broly for a good portion of their fight and ultimately resorts to [[FusionDance Fusion]] to defeat him, which still counts as a PyrrhicVictory.

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** Goku has been inflicted with this since ''Anime/DragonBallZBattleOfGods'', despite all the new amazing power-ups he has achieved throughout the new era of ''Dragon Ball''. He loses twice to Beerus, he loses to Freeza in ''Anime/DragonBallZResurrectionF'' and only manages to kill Freeza thanks to a DeusExMachina. However, this is PyrrhicVictory as Goku has a great desire to defeat his enemies in a fair one-on-one fight, and him killing a Freeza was a cheap shot that he didn't earn by himself. This trend continues in the ''Super'' anime, where he manages to lose ''twice'' in the Tournament of the Gods of Destruction, gets another PyrrrhicVictory PyrrhicVictory against Copy-Vegeta (Monaka is the one who saved the day, not Goku), he never wins against Black or Zamasu, and in the Tournament of Power, [[spoiler:Goku ultimately doesn't win the tournament and has to take down Jiren in a mutual triple ring-out with Freeza's help]]. In ''Anime/DragonBallSuperBroly'', Goku gets his ass whooped by Broly for a good portion of their fight and ultimately resorts to [[FusionDance Fusion]] to defeat him, which still counts as a PyrrhicVictory.

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** Goku has been inflicted with this since ''Anime/DragonBallZBattleOfGods'', despite all the new amazing power-ups he has achieved throughout the new era of ''Dragon Ball''. He loses twice to Beerus, he loses to Freeza in ''Anime/DragonBallZResurrectionF'' and only manages to kill Freeza thanks to a DeusExMachina. However, this is PyrrhicVictory as Goku has a great desire to defeat his enemies in a fair one-on-one fight, and him killing a Freeza was a cheap shot that he didn't earn by himself. This trend continues in the ''Super'' anime, where he manages to lose ''twice'' in the Tournament of the Gods of Destruction, gets another PyrrrhicVictory against Copy-Vegeta (Monaka is the one who saved the day, not Goku), he never wins against Black or Zamasu, and in the Tournament of Power, [[spoiler:Goku ultimately doesn't win the tournament and has to take down Jiren in a mutual triple ring-out with Freeza's help]]. In ''Anime/DragonBallSuperBroly'', Goku gets his ass whooped by Broly for a good portion of their fight and ultimately resorts to [[FusionDance Fusion]] to defeat him, which still counts as a PyrrhicVictory.

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* ''Film/{{Thor}}'' starts to fall into this from ''Film/ThorRagnarok'' on. Thor struggles mightily and gains a host of new allies against superior foes and unfavorable odds, but consistently comes up short, first against Hela and then twice against Thanos. His meager victories are either overturned immediately or meaningless. By the time of ''Film/AvengersEndgame'' the defeats have worn him down to a shell of his former self.


* ''Disney/{{Frozen}}'': Not only does Elsa's panic attack end up freezing Arendelle over, but she also ends up [[spoiler:turning her sister into a solid block of ice]] despite everything she did to avoid it. She nearly wins her fight against [[spoiler:the Duke of Weselton's soldiers]], but at the last minute, [[spoiler:Hans stops her]].
** After Hans reveals his manipulative plans to Anna, and attempts to seize the throne of Arendelle for himself, Anna becomes more determined to fight off the curse of a frozen heart and be reconciled with Elsa. When Olaf tells Anna that true love involves putting someone else before yourself, she is reminded how Kristoff helped her throughout the journey. Just as Hans is about to apprehend Elsa, Anna steps in front, and Hans's sword is shattered. After Anna is thawed out and Elsa has her magical powers under control, Anna says Prince Hans is the only one with a cold heart, sending him and Duke Weselton out of Arendelle.

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* ''Disney/{{Frozen}}'': Not only does Elsa's panic attack end up freezing Elsa accidentally freeze Arendelle over, but she also ends up accidentally [[spoiler:turning her sister into a solid block of ice]] despite everything she did to avoid it. She nearly wins her fight against [[spoiler:the Duke of Weselton's soldiers]], but at the last minute, [[spoiler:Hans stops her]].
** After Hans reveals his manipulative plans to Anna, and attempts to seize the throne of Arendelle for himself, Anna becomes more determined to fight off the curse of a frozen heart and be reconciled with Elsa. When Olaf tells Anna that true love involves putting someone else before yourself, she is reminded how Kristoff helped her throughout the journey. Just as Hans is about to apprehend Elsa, Anna steps in front, and Hans's sword is shattered. After Anna is thawed out and Elsa has her magical powers under control, Anna says Prince Hans is the only one with a cold heart, sending him and Duke Weselton out of Arendelle.
her]].



* In ''Film/{{Inferno}}'', the main character Mark does absolutely nothing that contributes to the villain's death. The villain died in a fire that she unintentionally set through one of her murders. All that Mark did was explore the building and escape it while it was burning down.

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* In ''Film/{{Inferno}}'', the main character Mark does absolutely nothing that contributes to the villain's death. The villain died dies in a fire that she unintentionally set through one of her murders. All that Mark did was does us explore the building and escape it while it was it's burning down.

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