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Butt Monkey / Live-Action TV

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  • 2 Broke Girls:
  • Tony Lewis of The 10th Kingdom is a Butt Monkey for pretty much three-fourths of the miniseries, culminating when the seven years of bad luck he receives for breaking the Traveling mirror causes him to break the entire complement of the Dwarves' mirrors, compounding his bad luck by thirty times so that he ends up falling and breaking his back. After this, aside from continued snarkiness, he even Took a Level in Badass during the climax, sort of.
  • Rick Geddes on 15/Love was used and manipulated by Squib and Cody, disrespected and mocked by his nominal boss, President Bates, and insulted frequently by the coaches. At least he managed to score a hot girlfriend in the last season.
  • Increasingly, Lutz on 30 Rock. When Jack asks the writers what their parents tell people they do for a living, the others' answers are things like "surgeon". Lutz's response: "Died".
    • "Shut up, Lutz."
    • Jenna is also the butt of many jokes. Such the writers all acting like she is ugly when she clearly isn't.

  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has Fitz, at least early in the series. In addition to the Running Gag that has him getting knocked out all the time, he's almost always the one who's held hostage, trapped (unarmed) in the middle of a siege, inadvertently helping out the Villain of the Week, or some combination of all the above. Added to that is the fact that seemingly nearly every guy they meet feels compelled to hit on his Love Interest (who is herself Oblivious to Love, while he simply Cannot Spit It Out). Whether all this is played for laughs or drama generally depends on the overall tone of the episode. In the Darker and Edgier second season this is taken Up to Eleven and exclusively played for drama with his brain damage leaving him Tongue-Tied. It's finally averted starting with Season 3, by which point Fitz has taken a level in badass, is more forward in his relationship with Simmons, and is overall a tougher character.
  • ALF:
    • Alf can be a butt monkey, humans dislike him a lot since he can't help being an alien and treat him with disdain such as with Kate often locking him in the basement or wrongly accusing him of breaking the Ochmoneks window with a football with no proof even though Alf never plays football and spends all day watching TV. Alf will also go depressed from being cooped up in a house all day and having been separated from his Melmacian love Rhonda for so long, ALF starts to desire Lynn's affections.
    • Willie, he's the fall guy for any trouble ALF causes, and he has to empty his wallet for ALF's appetite and excessive TV watching. And let's not forget the times Alf broke Willie's foot, stole his dinner, got him thrown in jail, etc.
  • Tristan tends to serve this purpose on All Creatures Great and Small. It's usually his own fault, but this just makes the times when he's genuinely trying (to take out a girlfriend, for example, or to do his job) more painful, as we count the seconds to the inevitable catastrophe. Fortunately he bounces, and never seems to suffer lasting damage.
    • This is consistent with his portrayal in the books which are based on James Herriot's personal memoirs.
  • In Almost Live!, John Kiester got saddled with it, because Ross Schaffer's comedy persona was an obnoxious, smug Eighties yuppie, and they wanted "the anti-Ross" to act as a foil. When Schaffer left the show, and Keister became the host, he still suffered a bit from it, now mixed with some Only Sane Man.
  • Deputy Ben Healy in American Gothic. Anytime his conscience looks to be getting the better of him, Lucas Buck will subject him to a cruel and elaborate joke to get him to keep his mouth shut.
  • Amigas y rivales:
    • Luis becomes this in the second half of the telenovela, after leaving his mother's house and being abandoned by his girlfriend Tamara.
    • Irene, a fat woman with a sad life, who is constantly humiliated by her schoolmates and even some friends. And to make matters worse, the man she fall madly in love with is dating her best friend.
    • Tamara. All her romantic relationships fail miserably.
  • Arrested Development:
    • Anne is constantly belittled and she gets abandoned in Mexico.
    • Buster Bluth, especially in the episodes after he got his hand bitten off and replaced with a hook. Well, he is a monster.
    • Tobias. Over the course of the show he is run over by a car on several separate occasions, has his hair plugs reject his body (resulting in a near fatal condition), and to add insult to injuries, his wife constantly attempts to have an affair.
    • GOB. He’s been beaten up, tazered, stabbed multiple times, thrown into the ocean, had two of his fingers cut off at one point, and spend two weeks handcuffed and trapped in a storage lock-up as the result of one of his acts going haywire. Not to mention he's The Unfavorite of the family and practically everything he tries to do ends in complete failure.
  • Tommy Merlyn on Arrow. The poor guy was just a lightning rod for bad luck and every time something good happened, something horrible was waiting around the corner to beat him down again. Before the series started, he saw his mother murdered and was neglected by his father, who simply abandoned him for two years. As an adult, he loses his best friend for five years, loses his fortune after his father cuts him off and then tries to make him close down a clinic that his mother cared about, he finds out Oliver and his father are both murderers, his relationship with Laurel falls apart because he can't keep Oliver's secret and she still has feelings for him and he gets beaten up and nearly murdered by Huntress. And then he dies saving Laurel by being impaled and crushed by concrete.
  • In Auction Kings, Jon and Cindy. Jon typically gets teased for being the new guy, while Cindy hurts seemingly whenever she tries using an old toy.

  • Babylon 5:
    • Dr. Stephen Franklin who, despite always trying to do the right thing, generally winds up suffering for it, especially in later episodes.
    • Centauri ambassadorial aide Vir Cotto who seems to be a Bumbling Sidekick (at least in the early seasons), The Un-Favourite (by his own account (the only reason he got such an important job is that his family didn't want him at home), the Guilt by Association Gag and The Woobie.
    • Delenn's lackey who was in love with her named Lennier. Unrequited love is a bitch.
    • Marcus Cole deserves an Honorable Mention, what with having to do incredible amounts of risky dirty work that he can't even talk about for most of Season 3, and (yet again) his unrequited love for Ivanova...]]
    • Zathras. That poor guy. His immortal line from "War Without End" about sums it up: "Zathras is used to being beast of burden to other peoples needs. Very sad life. Probably have very sad death, but at least there is symmetry." Or "But only Zathras have no one to talk to. No one manages poor Zathras, you see. So Zathras talks to dirt. Sometimes talks to walls, or talks to ceilings. But dirt is closer. Dirt is used to everyone walking on it. Just like Zathras, but we've come to like it. It is our role. It is our destiny in the universe. So, you see, sometimes dirt has insects in it. And Zathras likes insects. Not so good for conversation, but much protein for diet."
  • Battlestar Galactica:
    • Chief Tyrol. The list is frighteningly long, so we'll just run down the list: Finds out his girlfriend is a Cylon. Girlfriend gets shot by co-worker. Girlfriend's clone has baby with someone else. Loses everyone he loves. Mercy-kills Socinus. Almost executed, multiple times. Freaky dreams. Accidentally hurts people. Almost Thrown Out the Airlock. Populist leanings are inevitably doomed. Married to fan-hated Cally, the co-worker who shot his Cylon girlfriend. Enough for you? Did we mention he's a Cylon? And when Cally finds out, she nearly goes insane and attacks him. Then she gets Thrown Out The Airlock by another person who recently found out that she's a Cylon. And he thinks she committed suicide. Then, in a fit of drunken emotions, loses the commander's good will and forfeits his post, finds out he's not the father of his child. Gets played by his old girlfriend, who manipulates his feelings into springing her from the ship's brig, leading to her almost destroying the ship. Poor bastard.
    • If there is one hapless character who just sort of happens to be the butt of all the jokes, it's undoubtedly Gaius Baltar, especially in the first season when he's still trying to get used to seeing Number Six everywhere (and, in one episode, is surprised that everyone else can see her, and Hilarity Ensues). Whether or not he deserves it depends on which side of the Face–Heel Revolving Door he is that episode.
  • The Big Bang Theory:
    • Leonard. The show has gone out of its way, particularly in later seasons, to make his life MORE AND MORE miserable... and it's always Played for Laughs, regardless of Leonard's progressively damaged psyche. His mother barely loves him, his roommate is always out to attack and insult him, and his girlfriend has no qualms hurting his feelings such as pointing she makes more income or feeding him uncooked spaghetti for dinner.
    • Stuart Bloom. Everything he says is depressing. His idea of being "cocky" is to claim that he's "unobjectionable". He can be stood up by a stray cat.
    • Sheldon is often on the receiving end of a lot of humiliation and punishment, not that he doesn't bring it onto himself, though. But he's far luckier than Leonard, mainly because Leonard is too cowardly to stand up to him.
    • Howard is often made fun of by Sheldon and everyone else (sometimes, even Penny) for his lack of a doctoral degree, his short height, his relationship with his mother (until he finally moved out after marrying Bernadette) and his Casanova Wannabe status. He was also the Butt Monkey to the other astronauts when he went to space.
    • Raj's inability to speak around women occasionally makes him this, as he has to whisper his comments to Howard, who pretends he said something completely different.
    • Alex, who only appeared in Season 6. Only natural since she has to be Sheldon's assistant. So she's a brilliant scientist, but her errands for him are demeaning such as buying presents for his girlfriend and similar.
    • Amy has often been this. She once ended a date with more clothes on.
    • So to put it plainly, the whole main cast except for Penny, who serves as a bully and Jerkass always freeloading off her friends for free food, money, Wi-Fi and verbal compliments about how great or smart she is.
  • Blackadder:
    • The Black Adder: Prince Edmund's attempts to take over the throne are thwarted in the most humiliating way possible (most usually by his own bumbling).
    • Blackadder II: Lord Percy is Lord Edmund's guinea pig in his cunning plans. For instance, once he had to sleep with the Baby-Eating Bishop of Bath and Wells.
    • Blackadder the Third: Baldrick gets the same treatment, having to endure Blackadder's abuse as well as face real dangers.
    • The whole cast of Blackadder Goes Forth is this except General Melchett, and that's becasue he's the one who makes the others Butt Monkeys in the first place.
  • The entire FBI Task Force on The Blacklist succumbs to this trope. Personnel keep dying everywhere and are constantly manipulated by Red. The saving grace is that they keep reeling in criminal after criminal on the list.
  • Vila from Blake's 7 an old-school comic relief character, given relatively little in the way of consistent development or opportunities for sympathy. He always gets disproportionate punishment for his cowardly and hedonistic nature, and Avon insults him daily (by the fourth season, so does almost everyone else). The one heroically Vila-centric episode came about because the actor's young daughter told him, "Daddy, you're stupid!" while watching the show. He is usually the victim of Ker Avon's caustic putdowns.
    Vila: I can't go out there. I'm very susceptible to low temperatures. I've got a weak chest!
    Avon: The rest of you's not very impressive either.
  • Bones:
    • Dr Sweets. every episode involves someone mocking his last name, demeaning his subject of expertise (psychology) and conclusions despite the fact that he is usually right, or just plain treating him like some doormat. Not to mention the terrible childhood he had. And then he dies, horribly and needlessly, leaving the show's Scrappy to raise their child alone.
    • Zach and later the rotating interns sometimes took turns at it when they became the the subjects of the week’s experiments or re-creations. There was frequent mock hitting, weapon use, demonstration of attacks, and other things. It’s often amusing to watch.
  • Boy Meets World:
    • Eric became Butt Monkey in the later seasons after he Took a Level in Dumbass. In one episode he gets struck by lightning. While indoors.
    • Shawn in the earlier seasons. Pretty much every misfortune, big and small, that can possibly befall a kid and still be appropriate to be shown on a family sitcom happened to him. However, he alternated between this and The Woobie, as some of his problems (such as Parental Abandonment) would have verged into Dude, Not Funny! had they been Played for Laughs.
  • The Deep in The Boys (2019). Despite being an accomplished celebrity, he's essentially the embodiment of the "Aquaman is lame" sentiment spawned by Super Friends as his teammates belittle him for just having above-average strength and being able to talk to fish. Homelander even uses an action figure of him when trying to teach his son to use his Eye Beams. After his sexual assault of Starlight is revealed to the public, he's Reassigned to Antarctica and suffers a well-deserved Trauma Conga Line as a result. He spends the course of the second season going through a redemption arc and realizing the error of his ways with the help of the local Church of Happyology (who forces him to sign over his bank account to them and marry a strange woman who "gives terrible blowjobs"), only for A-Train to steal his chance at reinstatement into The Seven, leaving him with nothing.
  • Breaking Bad:
    • Jesse Pinkman is the punching bag of this show. After five seasons you can count all the good things that happen to Jesse on one hand. As Walt has a family to look after, he often forces Jesse to do a lot of dirty work from retrieving stolen meth and money from a dangerous junkie husband-wife pair to selling the meth himself. He was also subject to Parental Abandonment after failing high school (though he disputes this in the movie) and getting arrested for doing drugs, thus forcing him to stay at his aunt's place before she died of cancer and then his parents kicked him out yet again to put the house on the market. He very narrowly escapes homelessness with help from Walt and Jane Margolis, though his luck goes downward again following Jane's death from overdosing on heroin. Though Saul does help him get his house back from his parents (Jesse even proudly dangles the keys in front of his parents after they swiped them from him about a year ago).
    • Walter White, on the other hand, is a clear Deconstruction. It's implied that everything he's doing stems, in part, from his feeling that he's been a Butt Monkey throughout his entire life, and that he's out to make his mark and get revenge on the world that mistreated him. To an extent, he may be right, but it also ignores the fact that many of his misfortunes were a direct consequence of his own poor decisions and flaws, particularly his Pride.
    • Walt Jr. at times, as if his cerebral palsy isn't enough, Skyler's there to make his life more miserable such as veggie bacon for breakfast or renaming him Flynn which he doesn't like. And then there was that time Walt forced him to down tequila till he vomited into the pool.
    • Saul Goodman is one in his spin-off show Better Call Saul. Saul, then going by his real name Jimmy McGill, has his Butt Monkey status courtesy of his older brother Chuck sabotaging his legal career so that he can't work for the mega-corporation HHM (Hamlin, Hamlin & McGill) that has dominated the law market of Albuquerque, reducing Jimmy to a very poor lifestyle; having to drive an outdated, near-broken down 1998 Suzuki Esteem and sleep in a boiler room of a nail salon. The show centers on Jimmy descending (or relapsing) into a life of crime pulling off notorious scams, rip-offs and blackmails to get money. Though he does get back on his feet through cunning, daring schemes willing to take on bold, illegal and dangerous tasks in order to boost his standard of living.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • Xander introduced the term, with his line "I'm sick of being everybody's butt monkey." in the Dracula episode. The term first appeared on TV in BtVS, but was heard "on the street" well before that.
    • Andrew also frequently abused in the seventh season, though really no more than he deserved.
    • Harmony gets this occasionally as well on the evil side of the fence, but never more than in Angel's episode "Harm's Way".
    • Cordelia frequently gets this treatment in the Sunnydale High episodes, almost as much as Xander. Perhaps even more so, seeing as everyone, including Xander, makes sarcastic quips at her expense.
      Buffy: Cordelia, your mouth is moving. Words are coming out. This is never good.
      • Also:
        Cordelia: Why are these terrible things always happening to me?
        Xander: *cough* Karma! *cough*
    • Spike, after his badassery softened a bit, started being humiliated constantly - hated by Buffy, distrusted by the rest of the main cast, and mocked at every turn. This was justified, given that he spent the majority of it insulting everybody back and telling them that he was going to kill them all as soon as he got the chip that prevented him from harming humans out. Also, when he was wheelchair bound, Angelus persistently kept making fun of him and taunting him.
    • Early on, Jonathan became the show's go-to victim for anything non-lethal. As bad as high school was for everyone else at Sunnydale, Jonathan just got screwed.

  • Sly Winkle of California Dreams was pretty much this, even though he had a greedy streak and was a literal embodiment of The Complainer Is Always Wrong. But because it was a Peter Engle Saved by the Bell clone, that type of character was just frowned upon.
  • In Mexico, Margarito Perez from La Caravana is a textbook example, to the grade the catchphrase used against him became synonymous of Epic Fail.
  • Cases of the 1st Department, Vita Srsen is an outsider in the team and their resident butt monkey. He is usually assigned to find related cases in the archives or he helps Major Plisek with computer systems but he dreams of leading investigation of a homicide case. Martin Prazak and especially prankster Petr Andel make fun of him on a regular basis. For instance, Andel gave Srsen's phone number to homeless guys and told them to call him because he would rent them a cheap flat.
  • Detective Kevin Ryan in Castle seems to be a low-level version of this; he'll be the one who has to stop drunken rock stars from peeing into hotel lobby plant pots while his partner (successfully) chats up the pretty concierge he wasn't getting anywhere with, will be left with an entire room of files to pack up after everyone ditches him to follow a lead, will sit down to finally drink a cup of coffee before being dragged out by everyone before he can...
  • In Central Park West, Rachel Dennis (the fashion editor for a fashion magazine called Communique) suffers the brunt of almost every humiliating incident - if something bad happens, it's usually to her. Even though she tries many plans during the series, almost all of them backfire on her (and leave her worse off than before). From the time she's introduced, she gets hit with a divorce settlement, gets thrown out of her hotel because she can't pay her bills, is scared that she'll be deported because she doesn't have a valid passport, gets rejected twice by lead character Peter Fairchild (even after she openly admits her feelings for him), her co-workers belittle and insult her, she gets fired shortly after she assumes control of Communique during a staff shake-up and the new editor humiliates her when she's gone by producing better material. And that's just the first season - she then goes on to humiliate herself (by getting covered in mud) to get her job back, and then disappears into the background because of the plot.
  • Due to the rotating panel format, Chelsea Lately has a regular selection of Butt Monkeys to choose from. It's usually either Jo Koy or Loni Love that get the most abuse from Chelsea.
  • Chuck:
    • Morgan Grimes, the titular Chuck Bartowski's sidekick and Heterosexual Life-Partner. Other than the occasional episode, Morgan generally ends up playing second fiddle to Chuck... and that is ignoring Chuck's sans Masquerade identity as the ultimate Accidental Badass.
    • On the villain side of things, there's FULCRUM's sauve agent Vincent Smith. He was, in direct order blown up, shot, poisoned, shot again, beaten up by Stephen, run over by Chuck, knocked out by Sarah, then finally blown up by an air strike. It's all due to just horrible luck.
  • Every single character the Canadian series Le Cœur a ses Raisons has suffered an outrageous amount of abuse due to the parodious and borderline slapstick nature of the show, but the maid Madge REALLY takes the biscuit. She has amongst others been run over by a car, poisoned, crushed by a safe thrice, sprayed with teargas, thrown in a Christmas tree as per a "family tradition", used to extiguish a fire, beat up with microphones, abandoned down a well, shot with tranquilizing darts, and hit with an impossibly wide array of objects like a metal plate, a glass bottle, a shovel, a car muffler, a wooden stool, a present or a fan. And that's not even counting every punch ad slap the woman received.
  • Jerry Lewis and Lou Costello, typically, when they appeared on the Colgate Comedy Hour.
  • Community:
  • Josh, Jules' younger boyfriend in Cougar Town, is a perfect example. It's galling that he falls for her with all the abuse she and her friends put him through (for no apparent reason), and when she eventually breaks up with him, everyone joins in on the mockery and cruelty.
  • Spencer Reid in Criminal Minds isn't abused by his friends (they do treat him like a younger brother, but he's not abused), but he is abused by the writers, so much so that whenever another character is the victim, fans rate the trouble on how close this is to a "Reid Trauma". Reid's been kidnapped, beaten, drugged, held at gunpoint, forced to dig his own grave, and poisoned by anthrax, just to name a few.
    • The one time that he was present at an issue but wasn't the one that got the trauma? He got to listen while one of his coworkers was dragged into a nearby room and beaten because she took the fall so that the cult they were being held hostage in wouldn't know he was with the FBI.
    • While it's obviously a much smaller issue than everything listed above, no-one ever seems to want to hear any of his interesting facts. Poor guy.
      • Oh yeah, what about Kevin Lynch, played by the original Butt Monkey, Xander? He's one who got accidently seen in the buff—by Rossi!
    • One word for you: Maeve.
  • Nick Stokes from CSI got buried by a madman, got molested by his babysitter, had a stalker, was accused of murder when his prostitute girlfriend was killed, and is one of the few people who ever cries on the show.
  • Ryan Wolfe has become the Butt Monkey of CSI: Miami. He's frequently shown at the crime scene making the wrong conclusions (which another character quickly points out), if anyone's evidence turns out not to be what was expected, it's his, other characters make fun of his wardrobe...basically, everyone except Horatio treats him with total contempt.
    • Don't forget when he got shot in the eye with a nail gun. Yeouch.
  • Essentially the entire premise of Curb Your Enthusiasm seems to be that horrible things are funny when they happen to Larry David.

  • Jon Stewart is frequently tormented by correspondents and guests alike on The Daily Show, from jabs about his height to insinuations that the departure of previous host Craig Kilborn was the worst thing to ever happen to the show.
    • Recently there was John Oliver's particularly brutal criticism of Jon Stewart's hosting the Oscars.
      John Oliver: You know the only thing you'd be good at hosting, Jon? The funeral of fun. No, you're right, I take that back. You know who'd be better at that? Hugh Jackman. The guy's amazing!
    • Let's not forget the line "...the George W. Bush of comedy" Oliver said to Stewart in the same bit.
  • George from Dead Like Me. Oh so many ways...
    • Killed by a deorbiting toilet seat on her lunch break of the first day of a job she hates at a temp agency.
    • Finds out that since she never made anything of her life, she is now doomed to serve as a Grim Reaper, helping to ferry souls to their individual afterlives.
    • Has to find somewhere to live, as she can't live with her mother.
    • Ends up working at the same office, under her "new" name.
    • Is called "Toilet Seat" by everyone but the supervisor of the reapers, who affectionately calls her "peanut".
    • And that's just the first episode or two...
      • Also, Mason, who is ridiculed by his colleagues, shot at, run over and hurt in various other ways, and once had a stash of drugs dissolve in his anal tract. Oh, and he died drilling a hole in his head.
  • E.B. Farnum from Deadwood is the camp's resident Butt Monkey, who constantly suffers physical and verbal abuse and degradation from just about everyone, even his hotel guests. At one point, one of the villains spits in his face twice and tells Farnum that he will kill him if he wipes it off, so Farnum has to walk around with spit and mucus on his face for a while. After justifiably being frozen in terror for hours.
    • Richardson is usually the victim of Farnum's impotent rage.
  • The Defenders (2017) makes Danny Rand the Butt Monkey of the group. His naive and pompous demeanor and fantastical backstory to how he got his powers causes everyone to shit on him at every turn. Even Stick, the last of the Chaste who are supposed to defend him, calls him a "thundering dumbass".
    • The Netflix MCU shows as a whole have Turk Barrett. Virtually every scene he shows up in, no matter the show, involves him getting his ass kicked.
  • Everyone (even the husbands) on Desperate Housewives gets this treatment at one point or another during the show, but Tom Scavo takes the cake. The ideas he comes up with seldom ever last in the long-run (such as his pizzeria which was successful for, oh, two or three seasons at most). Then his lovechild with a former one-night stand turns out to be borderline-sociopathic and he ends up having to send her to live with her grandparents. Then the Flanderization for both him and his wife kicked in full-force in season five, and the two got caught in a seemingly endless loop of arguing over every little thing that would've led most married couples to divorce in real life.
    • On the female side, you have Bree who among other things: had her husband murdered, had one child turn into a sociopath bent on his mother's destruction (though he ultimately gets redeemed), stalked by a psychopath who tried to kill her therapist, lost the grandson she was raising as her own third child to her daughter (the child's biomom) who then decided to raise him in an ultra-liberal form just to spite conservative Bree, the loss of said (grand)child causing her marriage to her second husband to collapse, and nearly being killed by said second-husband's psychotic mother not once but twice.
      • And then there's season six: Getting caught up in an extramarital affair over a miscommunication with her husband, having her lover killed in a bizarre plane crash, and her husband being paralyzed as a result of said affair/plane crash is the least of her worries by the time we reach the last few episodes: Her attempts to make her first husband's lovechild feel welcome ultimately result in said lovechild blackmailing her, and her husband leaving her over giving in to said blackmail.
  • Mel Cooley on The Dick Van Dyke Show. If Buddy Sorrell isn't treating Mel like this, Alan Brady is.
  • In Didi's Comedy Show, almost anyone played by Eberhard Prüter. No wonder he landed the role of Thaddäus!
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Doctor, particularly Eleven, really is "everybody's butt monkey", even his own. See: "Amy's Choice", in which the Doctor, as the Dream Lord, makes fun of himself for his "tawdry quirks" (vegetarianism, stupid costumes, dragging around a cutesy space dog, etc.), and the Doctor admits, indirectly, that nobody hates him as much as himself. Amy, via Bait-and-Switch Comparison, says he "could almost be mistaken for a real person". River keeps shooting his hats. Going back a little, Donna kept calling him "Martian boy". And the Worf Effect has its way with him about Once an Episode, and he has (recently?) developed a habit of getting killed off constantly even between regenerations.
    • The Fifth Doctor. He is a particularly noble and sensitive incarnation, who is perhaps the stoutest pacifist of all the Doctors, and the universe just seems to love to spite him for these traits by throwing him into highly dangerous adventures where people around him often die and he frequently gets the crap beat out of him, both physically and emotionally.
    • The Eighth Doctor. He keeps getting tortured, losing his memory, and his shirt. He has his companion and great-grandson get killed by the Daleks and finally dies due to his race becoming so terrible a woman would rather die then be saved by him.
    • Adric: He just never seemed to be particularly well liked by the other characters, if someone was going to get captured or injured in a story, it was usually Adric, and he was eventually killed while trapped aboard a runaway space freighter. The Butt-Monkey status even seems to extend to actor Matthew Waterhouse who was kept in the dark about his character's demise until Peter Davison (the Doctor) had some pity and told him that he would be out of a job once the production had concluded. Poor Waterhouse doesn't even get much respect on the DVD commentaries where the other actors will often interrupt him and tease him.
      • After his character was killed in the final episode of "Earthshock", Matthew Waterhouse was given a thankless cameo as a mirage in the following story just so producer John Nathan-Turner could put Waterhouse's name as a teaser in the television listing. Since his character had apparently died, the expectation was that viewers would tune in to see his miraculous survival. Waterhouse's glum performance in the 15-seconds he was on screen makes it evident that he had no enthusiasm for the job.
    • Turlough, who was constantly getting captured/locked up or otherwise abused, predominantly because the writers at the time had no real clue what to do with a male companion who was meant to be both intelligent and technically apt. He at least partially brought it on himself through being a devious and treacherous coward.
    • Mickey Smith eventually realizes that he gets less respect than the Robot Buddy. In an Author's Saving Throw, he promptly decides to Take a Level in Badass.
    • "Partners in Crime": Penny Carter, in the course of Going for the Big Scoop, is captured and tied up twice, forgotten by the heroes, and ultimately has to bring the chair along. She's last seen telling the Doctor and Donna that she's going to report them for "madness".
    • Rory Williams has a lot in common with Mickey in this sense, though he progresses to The Woobie level with surprising speed and doesn't so much take a level in badass as bypass the concept of levels completely and end up becoming a near legend in plastic, guarding an ancient box for two thousand freaking years.
    • The Doctor even lampshades this in "The Doctor's Wife", after accidentally vapourising an Ood. He casually says 'Another Ood I failed to save' in a mildly regretful tone.
    • Fitz, of the Expanded Universe Eighth Doctor Adventures, is a reconstruction of this trope. His friends all constantly make fun of him for the fact he's Book Dumb and a Lovable Sex Maniac. The Doctor, who kind of doesn't know any better, makes quite a habit of telling him to his face he's not the brightest bulb in the chandelier. Despite the fact he's just a normal human Action Survivor, he suffers about as much as the Doctor does, which is setting the bar really high. But his friends only mock him affectionately (or in the Doctor's case insult him with no malice intended); even grumpy-to-the-bone Compassion trusts him and is almost content to tolerate him. It almost seems like some of his fellow companions like him because, for one thing, they do genuinely like him, and for another, they enjoy picking on him. And since he's had such a hard life, learned to take a rather sensible attitude to all the crazy, scary shit that goes on, and isn't an emotionally-stunted stoic like the Doctor, he eventually takes up the role of Team Mom.
  • Drake & Josh:
    • Josh Nichols gets taken advantage of by Drake quite a lot and is the butt of many jokes, and on some occasions Megan will say that he has a huge head- when in actuality there's nothing wrong with his head at all. In one episode, he's literally assaulted in the streets several times. He has been arrested several times, in fact.
    • His dad, Walter, is an even bigger one.
    • To a lesser extent, Craig and Eric.
    • Even Drake, while nowhere near Josh's extent, has his moments where he ends up as this, such as being a victim of Megan's gratuitous pranks along with Josh and hated on by his English teacher, even when he actually does do his work in class.

  • Janine Butcher in EastEnders, after her return in December 2008 devolved dramatically from her previous Magnificent Bitch status, ended up as a janitor for Ronnie's club, her Evil Plan to take control of it blew up in her face and she lost her job, she got kicked out of the house she was sharing with her aunt, Pat and then had to go an live in a shabby flat. Eventually things started looking up for her when she took over her father's business but Pat just couldn't stand seeing her do well and smashed a picture of her father over her head. Then Libby Wicks threw a tub of paint over her. Somehow she eventually lost the business, was savagely beaten by Stacey Slater of all people (in the middle of the square with everyone watching!), the man she loved left her for Stacey Slater, her suicide attempt failed and her loving grandmother died. Then she finally got the break she deserved when she inherited her grandmothers millions. She could have just left Walford and lived the life of a millionairess somewhere else but no, she still lives in her pokey flat for some reason and these days just goes around the square trying to talk down to people but generally getting her ass handed to her.
  • John Gage on Emergency!. He never had any luck with his dates, his ideas always went wrong, and he got,the most severe physical injuries. He got hit by a car,sick from a monkey flu and bit by a rattlesnake at various points.
  • ER's Dr. Mark Green, who within 8 seasons on the show, experienced his wife leaving him for another man, his friend Susan leaving him before they get a chance to explore their feelings for each other, mishandling a routine delivery resulting in the death of the patient and a malpractice suit, being brutally beaten (which is left unsolved) and another malpractice suit for a case that he did not mishandle, the death of both parents within months of each other, and finally a brain tumor that he battled for a year and half before it finally killed him. And did I mention that during that he was grappling with his bratty teenage daughter, whose recklessness nearly killed his other daughter and trying to support his second wife through her own malpractice suit? Yeesh.
  • Fargo from Eureka is the Butt-Monkey. He's probably responsible for half of the accidents/disasters Eureka has to deal with, almost dying or getting the whole town killed countlessly times. Also, Fargo will inevitably find himself in an embarrassing situation every other episode. However, in the last two seasons he matured and moved beyond his Butt-Monkey status.
  • Chris from Everybody Hates Chris. The title should already give you a clue about how the show treats him.
  • One of the most prominent gags of Everybody Loves Raymond is Robert being the entire family's Butt-Monkey.
    • Although he didn't start out as such, Ray becomes Debra's Butt Monkey by the middle and later seasons.
    • Debra herself is one to Marie who always criticizes her and treats her very poorly, even worse than her Parental Neglect of Robert.

  • Father Prestwick in Father Dowling Mysteries. He rarely gets a line of serious dialogue, and his efforts to impress the Bishop often have comically disastrous results, such as a computer inventory system that he developed ordering waaaaaay more votive candles than they need.
  • Dr. Simon Tam on Firefly. The other characters frequently point out how much he doesn't fit in and he's the only one who gets pranks played on him.
    • In "Bushwhacked", Jayne tells Simon that Mal wants him to get suited up to treat survivors on an abandoned ship they found. Cue Simon showing up, uncalled for, in a spacesuit he put on incorrectly, with everyone staring at him as if he'd grown a third eye.
    • An even meaner prank was played on him in the pilot by Mal, who told him that Kaylee had died when she had actually completely recovered from the bullet wound Simon had been treating her for. Note that Mal had earlier threatened to space him if Kaylee didn't make it.
  • Murray, the incompetent "manager" of Flight of the Conchords. The Conchords number "Cheer Up, Murray" practically lampshades this, as the list of things that are supposed to cheer him up includes "You've got a wife... but she comes and goes" and "You've got all of your limbs" before the song just puts him down again: "Some people don't return your calls, they don't return your calls/ And some people call you Gingerballs, they call you Gingerballs..."
  • Twist on The Fresh Beat Band, full stop.
  • Ross on Friends, beginning with his three divorces, nervous breakdown, and job loss, he was also to be humiliated by the writers in front of women again and again and again. No matter what situation he is in, his so-called friends will not have much of a problem with reminding him how many times he has been divorced or how much of a failure he is. Sometimes he brings it on himself, but even just feeling a bit good and smug about himself is enough for them to forcefully bring him down.
    • Chandler, while not normally suffering as directly as Ross was also a Butt Monkey of sorts. He is the one character who is constantly belittled behind his back and sometimes to his face, usually by Rachel and Phoebe. In one episode Rachel even admits that she often wants to punch Chandler — and she doesn't know why. This is always played for humor. One episode actually has Phoebe and Rachel discussing a guy who they think is Monica's soul mate. While Chandler is RIGHT THERE. Rachel even says "It's a shame they never had a chance to meet". Of course, this is Played for Laughs.
    • Another Butt Monkey is the minor character Sophie. Rachel's boss, Joanna, verbally abuses her every single time she appears. It is implied that Joanna was bitter over Mark's resignation, and she took it out on Sophie. Sophie is delighted when Joanna dies, but that scene is her last appearance on the show, as the department they, as well as Rachel, were in is eliminated shortly after.

  • Even though everyone gets their fair share of having this role in Gaki no Tsukai ya Arahende, the two that stand out the most are Hosei and Tanaka Naoki, especially in the "No Laughing" New Year's Eve specials where the former somehow gets slapped by Chouno, and the latter gets Thai Kicked, as the mysterious DVDs contain a trap in which he gets called out for one. As of Prison, one of them has become a series staple.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • Everyone hates House Greyjoy, and they're always making incredibly poor decisions that lead to them getting their asses kicked in one way or another. In the books, it's even worse when you consider that, when the Targaryens invaded, the Ironborn (though not the Greyjoys; at the time they were ruled by House Hoare and Harren the Black, builder of Harrenhal) ruled the whole Riverlands, and then lost it all, thanks to Aegon's dragons. The Tullys, the current lords of the Riverlands, earned their title for leading the rebellion that helped oust Harren during Aegon's conquest.
      • Theon Greyjoy. Its not just that he's grown up as a hostage of the Stark family to keep his once-rebellious father in line. When he goes home at the behest of Robb Stark to secure an alliance between the Starks and Greyjoys, he gets scorned right off the docks when he first arrives. Things get progressively worse for Theon as he gets snubbed by his own father multiple times until he accepts his place as a Greyjoy and works with his father to conquer the North, including the very Starks that raised him. He gets a single small ship and is ordered to harass small fishing villages, gets disrespected by his own crew, and when he invades Winterfell, Bran Stark, a young crippled boy, drives Theon to total exasperation by refusing to yield. And he can't even execute a man right, as it takes four swipes with his sword and a bunch of kicking to get Ser Rodrick's head severed, and this is before he gets made a complete fool of by Osha who sleeps with him just so she can slip out of the castle with the Stark boys, Hodor, and the two direwolves. That's right: Theon managed to turn a flawless, audacious conquest into a massive Humiliation Conga... which continues over the next few episodes, beginning with his attempt to save face: it results in him being manipulated by his right-hand man into killing two children and making it look as they were the Stark boys. After being driven half-insane over the next few days by the horn-blowing of the Stark bannermen marching on Winterfell he tries to rally his men to go down fighting, even delivering an impressive Rousing Speech to that end, and for a moment it looks as though he's finally earned their respect... And then he gets knocked out by his own treacherous right-hand man and left to face to the approaching army while his own men retreat. He's then captured and mercilessly tortured, only to be rescued by a man claiming to be sent by his sister, only to be re-imprisoned and tortured even more heinously by him. After enduring more heinous torture, Theon is taken off his wooden cross by two women, who start to seduce him, only to reveal that it was nothing more than an excuse by his new captor to torture him even further by appearing to castrate him.
      • Balon Greyjoy is a bit more formidable than the usual type. Ned Stark and Robert Baratheon utterly destroyed Balon's rebellion, and nobody seems to have considered the Ironmen to be much more than a nuisance ever since. Come Season 6, he's rather unceremoniously killed off by his own brother.
    • Lancel Lannister even more so. He's sent on a Snipe Hunt by King Robert, mocked by the same for his alliterative name, and things go downhill from there.
      Tyrion: Lancel, tell my friend Bronn to please kill you if anything should happen to me.
      Lancel: Please kill me if anything should happen to Lord Tyrion.
    • Tyrion is constantly ridiculed for being a dwarf, gets the worst treatment from his father by far, and almost all of his actions are undone in the long run. He spends much of Seasons 3 and 4 being on the receiving end of jokes and undesirable tasks, chiefly because he's the Token Good Teammate and Only Sane Man who doesn't think killing your enemies in underhanded brutal ways and expecting people to live with it is realistic or healthy in the long run. He complains to Shae at the start of Season 4 for essentially reduced to being the Lannisters' PR man when it comes to dealing with Sansa and Oberyn Martell while receiving nothing but scorn from his father, sister and nephew. By the end of Season 4, we only know of two allies he can really count on, barring potentially Sansa: Jaime and Varys.
    • The Starks are a rare and excruciating heroic example, as nothing ever seems to go well for them (except during the times of Robert's Rebellion — and even then Ned and his younger brother Benjen were the only surviving Starks of their generation — and the early part of the War of the Five Kings, when the Starks and Tullys were militarily unstoppable). By Season 4, they've lost almost everything, both in human and social (i.e. titles) terms, including Winterfell, the Lordship Paramount of the North, and the Wardenship of the North, with the only remaining Starks in no position to reclaim their previous rank, until Season 6, where despite all that, they do, re-establishing their Kingship in the North.
      • In particular, Sansa's life in King's Landing is a long stream of hope spots and Yank the Dog's Chain. Just when it seems her luck may be changing thanks to an Arranged Marriage to Loras, the political machine conspires against her. After returning to Winterfell, she reaches a point where she believes that things can't possibly be any worse. Theon rightly points out that with Ramsay around, things can always get worse.
    • The Tullys are also a heroic example, as nothing ever seems to go right for them either.
    • Orell gets no respect for his nagging suspicion of Jon despite being right the whole time.
    • Jaime becomes this in Season 4 among his family, having sat out of the war as a captive and Noble Fugitive, getting his hand chopped off in the process while the war was won without him doing anything significant and gets only coldness from Cersei, disappointment from Tywin in his continual insistence to serve in the Kingsguard, and disdain from his "nephew" Joffrey for being a Failure Hero. Not as much as Tyrion, but a drastic comedown from being his father's favourite. Even Loras, his future brother-in-law, easily defeats him in Passive-Aggressive Kombat which Jaime himself had initiated.
    • Hizdahr zo Loraq is pretty much this in Meereen. Daenerys marches into his home city, conquers it and has his father crucified along with many others - only to find out afterwards that Hizdahr's father was indeed one of the people who actively protested against the crime she executes them for. As he tries quite respectfully to have her communicate with the city's masters instead of antagonizing them, she usually belittles him and has no regard for what he has to say about Meereen's traditions and social, economical and cultural specifics. Then she threatens to feed him to her dragons because she accuses him of cooperating with those who rebel against her reign, enforces an engagement (she still is the woman who killed his father, remember?), yet always brings her lover with her in public, having no respect for their betrothal, and even allows said lover to mock Hizdahr and threaten him with a knife. When Hizdahr is killed in a revolt, Daenerys couldn't care less.
    • Hot Pie is the timid, klutzy, none-too-bright, tag-along member of Arya's companions.
    • By Season 4, Pycelle's scenes consist largely of him being derided publicly, culminating in him being booted from his own laboratory in favour of Qyburn. This derision extends to scenes he isn't even in, such as when Cersei describes him as smelling like a dead cat in "Two Swords".
    • Mace Tyrell, despite being Lord Paramount of the Reach, Warden of the South, and the dual Master of Ships and Coin, is ignored or belittled at every turn even by his own mother and his tangible contributions to the Small Council consist of fetching quill and paper and operating the door.
    • The Riverlands are pretty much the red-headed stepchild of the Seven Kingdoms, as they not only get dragged into wars they never caused and are a primary raiding target of the Ironborn, but most of those battles and wars are fought in The Riverlands rather than in the regions that started them. They're basically World War II era Poland, and the rest of the Kingdoms are either Nazi Germany or Soviet Russia.
    • Orson Lannister was the only Lannister even less respected than Tyrion. In fact, Tyrion often picked on Orson and was one of the most vocal bullies, since tormenting the mentally ill was the only time Tyrion could feel like All of the Other Reindeer.
    • Season 5-7 is hilariously unkind to poor Bronn.
      • After rising up the feudal ladder from sellsword to Knight and inches away from becoming Lord Bronn of House Stokeworth, in the space of a few episodes, he has his marriage into nobility annulled, plays escort and chore boy to Jaime, ends up poisoned and subsequently humbled by Tyene Sand, and gets elbowed in the face by Areo Hotah and ends up more or less right back where he started, a tag along sidekick and bodyguard to a Lannister boy.
      • By Season 6, Bronn is bitter about his predicament because Jaime has not delivered on his promises of a better castle and a better girl, and is accompanying him to a siege to boot. In Season 7, he has yet to be decently rewarded and is forced to fight dragons and whip peasants if he wants to be more than a cutthroat all his life, and even the pittance of gold Jaime offered him gets lost in the battle and he's risked his life for nothing.
    • Gendry is openly treated as this during the wight hunt. Tormund grosses on him and straight up weirds him out with the promise of Situational Sexuality, Lord Beric and Thoros are unrepentant about selling him to Melisandre, and Sandor tells him to "quit whingeing" and get with the program. Even Jon Snow (who was visibly weirded out by the latter trying to act like his best friend last episode) expresses skepticism about Gendry's inexperience traveling in the cold and fighting (snarking to Tormund that Ser Davos told him he could fight, in a tone that says, "He's a Tagalong Kid, humor him."). Sure enough, the minute they meet a real fight, Jon designates Gendry as errand boy (and Tormund grabs his hammer, noting that it would slow him down and they have more use for it). Of course, Gendry's sprint through the snow and winter really does save everyone's bacon.
  • There's also Gilligan, from Gilligan's Island. Everything he touched failed, pretty much, and the other six castaways rarely let him forget it.
  • Rachel Berry from Glee is actually such a Butt Monkey that even within a club full of Butt Monkeys, she still gets frequently insulted and snarked at for laughs over how irritating her fellow glee club members find her.
    • Sandy could also qualify for this trope toward the beginning of the series. He deserves it though, considering how he inappropriately touched a student.
  • Gossip Girl:
    • Chuck Bass. His father hated him, his BFF Nate is a hot candidate for Worst Friend Ever, his adoptive sister Serena verbally abuses and sabotages him except for when she needs his help, his uncle wants his company so bad that he didn't particularly mind when Chuck was wobbling on the edge of a building after his father's faked death, and now most recently the not-so-dead-mommy storyline. The only two people who don't treat him like crap are Lily, who still tends to forget that he exists most of the time, and Blair.
    • Chuck has it bad, but Dan Humphrey takes the cake on this one. He is constantly looked down upon and mistreated for being from a lower income family, his relationship with Serena falls apart, he is often manipulated by other characters, he's often at the center of scandals he had no involvement with, and Chuck and Blair seem to have made it their life's work to ensure he never has a happy moment. And what has he done to earn this? Aside from being one of the few decent, likeable and honest characters on the show (although a lot of fans dispute this), not a damn thing. Chuck is so horrible to him that it makes Chuck's moment of suffering seem a little karmic. Then again, given that Dan turned out to be the Creator's Pet and the show's ultimate bastard due to his having been Gossip Girl all along
  • The Great British Bake Off: Poor Howard in series 4. He accidentally cut his fingers in week one, Sue flattened his muffins in the second week, then Deborah mistook his custard for hers and put it on her trifle before realising it was his (to be fair she was mortified and he was allowed to use hers). He forgave Deborah and Sue, but he did audibly wish for just one uneventful bake.
  • While there are probably a few in Grimm, the most obvious one is poor Sergeant Wu. He has been attacked and beaten by most of the Wesen that have appeared, infected by a cursed cookie that made him sick and then the cure for that made him eat pillow stuffing and paper clips, put in a loony bin and treated like a crazy person when he faced the monster from his childhood legends for real, generally humiliated since the first season, and most recently scratched by a Lycanthrope, possibly making him into a wild wesen himself with no control over his woge now.

  • Hannah Montana:
    • Oliver is commonly a dumbass who gets into Amusing Injuries and is made fun of for his idiocy, mostly by Miley and Lily.
    • Jackson is no less dumb than Oliver as he usually gets in trouble and is a slob who never cleans his room.
  • Numerous Characters on Heroes have superpowers which give them nothing but grief...
    • Ted, whose unchecked radiation powers give his wife cancer before killing her, force him to go on the run after he's accused of being a terrorist, imprisoned by The Company and eventually getting killed by Sylar.
    • Niki, who develops Multiple-Personality Disorder as a response to her powers manifesting. The product of an abusive home, she is forced into a job stripping to pay back the money she owes a gangster, commits herself to an asylum (where she is, naturally, hassled by the evil redneck guards) after she realizes just how much control her alter ego has, indirectly causes the death of her husband D.L., and is generally manipulated by The Company, the gangster who runs it, and her alter ego up until the point where she is Stuffed in the Fridge.
    • Maya, whose power to poison people from a distance cannot be focused at all. After killing most of her family and friends at her brother's wedding, she flees to a church to become a nun, kills everyone in the church and then lives the harrowing life of an illegal immigrant trying to get to America and the one scientist she thinks can cure her. She has the misfortune to cross paths with Sylar, indirectly causes her own brother's death when he realizes what she fails to regarding Sylar being dangerous. And then she gets in a relationship with Mohinder, who puts her in a cocoon in his lab as he's turning into a spider.
    • Matt, whose telepathic powers lead him to discover his wife has been cheating on him with his former partner. Over the course of the first season, Matt is also mistakenly , kidnapped, manipulated by Eden's power, suspended from his job, thrown out a window by Jessica, and SHOT WITH HIS OWN BULLETS.
      • Somewhat subverted in the second season when he rebuilds his life, gets a new job as a detective in New York City, adopts Molly, and learns the extent of his powers but he still gets his ass kicked on multiple occasions.
      • Back in full force in Chapter Three, where Matt is forcibly teleported around the world, left for dead and he finds out that he is destined to get married in the future but that his wife will die.
      • Back with a vengeance in Chapter Four, when Matt is illegally arrested, framed as a terrorist on national television, finds out that he has a son and that, oh yes, he really IS a dead-beat dad like he was afraid of becoming. He's also blackmailed into saving the Big Bad's life. Also, he's Blessed with Suck in that he also gains the power to draw the future... but it doesn't do him a lick of good. And in a final crowning blow, the future where his true soul mate dies is averted... but only because said soul mate (Daphne, his girlfriend) is killed from complications due to multiple gunshot wounds she received while trying to save him.
      • And taken to its final logical conclusion in Chapter Five, where Matt tries to imprison Big Bad Sylar's mind inside his own body... only to have Sylar prove to be better at using Matt's powers than Matt is, with Sylar proving capable of making Matt see things within one episode and taking total control of Matt's actions within two episodes.
    • And then we have Sylar, whose ability to literally NEED to know how everything works led to him turning from what might have been a brilliant genius into an attempted suicide case, followed by a psychopath who just can't lead a normal life even when he tries his damnedest.
  • Col. Klink in Hogan's Heroes. Constantly duped by Hogan and his men, threatened and intimidated by his superiors and held in contempt by his own men who lined up to volunteer when he was imprisoned and facing a firing squad. Admittedly, he was a Nazi, but...
    • Oddly enough, Klink's Butt Monkey status was deliberate on Werner Klemperer's part. Although when you consider that Klemperer was a German Jew whose family had to flee the Nazis before the war or risk getting killed, and that he took the role partly to take revenge by making Nazis look utterly ridiculous, this suddenly makes a lot more sense.
  • In House, you can't help wonder why, why Wilson is still House's friend. Every scenes between the two show sarcastic arguments and in later seasons crazy pranks, with House always having the last laugh. Poor Wilson is his most cherished victim because even though he always reads House's character, he's overall too nice to get back at him. Even the rest of the staff sometimes make fun of Wilson, and Cuddy often punishes him for covering House! They all get their share, however. If having House as a friend is already a pain, you see in every episodes what it's like to have him as a boss! (Especially Chase) Cuddy always had to deal with his antics, even more when they were dating.
  • Alfie on House of Anubis. In the span of three seasons, He has been pranked numerous times by his best friend, was locked in the cellar, nearly died from poisoning, de-aged/shrunk, was pushed around by his girlfriend, and would have died at the end of season 1 if Fabian didn't switch the elixir. Note that in season 3 these things don't happen to Alfie nearly as often, but sometimes it feels like he is the only character to go through these kinds things.
  • How I Met Your Mother has Barney Stinson constantly being made fun of (sometimes, in a cruel way to the point of getting him to tears and storming out of the scene) by the rest of the gang. In some cases, it is justified by him being the one trying to make fun of his friends first.
  • Hustle: Eddie. Poor, poor Eddie. The gang treat him like a chew toy. In one episode he had a highly unusual streak of luck, and Mickey deliberately sabotaged it.

  • Freddie in iCarly. He has a hopelessly unrequited crush on Carly, which she exploits for all it's worth in order to get him to do things he doesn't agree with. The first time he actually goes against what Carly wants (to do something he really likes), she insults him then tells his mother about it. The main source of his buttmonkeyness lies in Sam who endlessly insults, harasses, physically abuses him, humiliates him in front of other people at school and on the webcast, breaks his possessions and causes him constant problems. And then there's his monstrously overprotective mother.
    • Pilot episode: Freddie doesn't have a single appearance in the episode that doesn't involve Sam insulting him, Freddie being reminded that Carly doesn't love him back (by both girls, Sam does this especially harshly) and being physically abused by Sam for making a simple mistake. Carly convinces Freddie to keep helping the girls, not by getting Sam to stop insulting him, but by manipulating Freddie through his crush on her. It doesn't get better.
      • It's finally goes downhill again in Season 4.
    • Gibby sometimes, the writers invented the "Texas Wedgie" just for him!
    • Spencer can be an even bigger Butt Monkey than Freddie is, given that many people like to beat up or bully Spencer, even for no reason. Chuck locked Spencer up inside a cage for a few days deprived of food and sprayed him with a toxic liquid that feels like but isn't water, got his back broken by professional MMA wrestler Jackson Colt, he got rolled inside a giant pumpkin by kids on Halloween into a street and some crazy psychopath Spencer tried teaching art to in prison just grabbed Spencer and strangled him for fun. Not to mention the fact that a lot of his inventions catch fire, even if it isn't physically possible.
    • Carly herself also gets this treatment from time to time. In Carly's case, it's dealing with stuff such as trying to promote a crappy shoe line, suffering through a bitchy teacher taking her heartbreak-induced rage out on her students and her model city project for school being sabotaged by rude senior citizens. It's enough to make Carly a woobie.
    • Lewbert the lousy doorman at Bushwell Plaza is the dumping ground for the 2 girls' pranks. Other than just Carly and Sam, he's gotten his steak dinner stolen out of his hand by some mean kid, receives death threats from people regularly (including if not mostly his mother), tries to take refuge from a crazy ex-girlfriend who wants to boss him around non-stop, and then there was that incident with Porkchop and Sludge Hammer who Spencer heckled over Lewbert's radio under the alias "The Doorman" then the two show up at Bushwell Plaza looking to find this alleged doorman for violent purposes.
  • The guys of Impractical Jokers take turns being this, usually culminating in the humiliating punishment.
  • In The InBESTigators, Amelia frequently seems to get the short end of the stick, whether it's inadvertently flooding Miss Maniaci's rose garden, flubbing her audition for the animal shelter commercial, or getting left out during Ava's sleepover.
  • Roy from The IT Crowd. Essentially about half the show's comedy is seeing how much the writers can get Roy to suffer. This reaches ridiculous levels in the finale.
    • Richmond. Moreso than Roy, which is really saying something.
  • Insane Clown Posse Theater has wrestling legend Greg Valentine in this role for J and Shaggy's jokes. At the same time, they put him over as a badass.
  • Deandra, or Sweet Dee, on It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is the Butt Monkey for her entire group of friends. They destroy every vehicle she's ever owned, ignore her, and generally crap all over her. In a special where the gang invents an alternate story about how their ancestors cracked the liberty bell, they call Sweet Dee their Witch Slave and force her to wait on them, threatening her with calling her out on being a witch if she doesn't comply.
    • However, Dee's one-way love interest Rickety Cricket is even more of a Butt Monkey. Dee convinces him to leave the priesthood to be with her, then loses interest. Later, she and her friends recruit him to sell crack for them and he becomes a homeless crack addict. Eventually, they even end up conducting a manhunt for him, just for fun.
    • The Waiter also counts, as his every appearance has him lamenting running into the gang again before being belittled or humiliated. In his first appearance they tied his shoes together and made him spill spaghetti on himself, and later on Frank helps him re-enroll into flight school and puts his mother in a home (that he lied about being nice) before going back on his promise to pay for it and putting him over $40,000 in debt.
    • Charlie also counts, to an extent. He and Dee are generally the two who receive the most crap from the other members of the gang. It's heavily implied that he was molested as a child, the unpleasant jobs like cleaning the toilets are referred to as 'Charlie Work', both his legs are broken when Dennis runs him over with his car, and there is even an episode in which Dennis and Mac punch him repeatedly and ultimately break bottles and chairs over his head so they could enter him as an underground street fighter.
    • Basically nothing good ever happens to the entire cast. But hey, it's funny!
  • The Singaporean talkshow It's A Small World, about foreigners working in Singapore and learning Mandarin, has designated Hongkonger Douglas Kung as this from the get-go. It's worth noting at this point that Douglas is a director and martial arts coordinator, credited with directing Shaolin vs Evil Dead, now working with the very TV station that made this show. He's probably the most Genre Savvy of the lot, his Mandarin is little more than his Cantonese being hammered into shape, and he's very much a Manchild who's prioritised having a ball over anything else. It does bite him especially in the ass one time, when he has to taste wasabi as a forfeit, and does it while holding his nose. Try that sometime.

  • Kingdom (2019): Lord Beom-pal. From repeatedly getting caught in zombie attacks to his diagnosis of gonorrhea, the only bit of luck this guy has is that he keeps managing to survive through sheer chance.
  • Kirby Buckets:
    • Kirby's older sister Dawn almost never has anything go her way. She's the constant butt of Kirby's cartoons as the dinosaur caricature Dawnzilla, her parents show clear favoritism towards Kirby over her, she's much less popular at school than Kirby, and she's never been able to win the affections of any of her love interests, and every episode of the show seems to end with her being embarrassed in some way. She was designed to give boys with annoying sisters someone to laugh at, but she can come off as Unintentionally Sympathetic instead, especially to female viewers.
    • Kirby's animated character Scrunch-Face, on the other hand, seems to apply more as The Chew Toy.

  • Phil Miller on The Last Man on Earth spends two years thinking he's, well, the eponymous individual, knocking more than a few screws loose. Then he finally meets up with some other plague-survivors, and proceeds to suffer one relentless humiliation after another.
  • Andre from The League receives far more ridicule and taunting than any of his friends.
  • Chris Skelton from Life on Mars; his condition's improved slightly in Ashes to Ashes, in which he's acquired a steady girlfriend, learned to shoot straight, and stopped falling into goal nets, but he's still the go-to guy when it comes to fishing abandoned guns out of chemical toilets.
  • Lost:
    • Off-island Locke. His flashbacks are one agony after another. He's abandoned by his teenage mother, raised in foster care, foster sister and mother die, bullied in high school, and then it gets bad. His biological parents team up to con him out of a kidney. He loses the love of his life. He's kicked out of his commune "family". Finally, his own father pushes him out an 8th-story window, paralyzing him. Crashing on the island is probably the best thing that ever happened to him. After he leaves the island, he's again in a wheelchair, everyone mocks him for being pathetic and lonely, he finds out his ex-girlfriend is dead, and he's unable to convince the Oceanic 6 to return. He's ready to hang himself when Ben arrives, talks him out of it, and then strangles him. On return to the island, Locke turns out to be the biggest Unwitting Pawn Chew Toy of the universe. He's still dead, the Big Bad's using his body as a suit and everything he believed about the island led him to that end. The only good thing that can be said is that there is literally no possible way for things to get worse for the poor bastard.
    • Michael does not have a single good thing happen to him throughout the entire show. He has to quit his true passion of art when his girlfriend gets pregnant, then she cheats on him before essentially stealing their son away to Europe, preventing him from contacting Walt all the while. Then, out of nowhere, his girlfriend dies and Michael has to take Walt because his stepfather doesn’t want him. They promptly crash on an Island complete with monsters and polar bears. Michael is the most proactive at escaping the Island but his first attempt at a raft gets completely destroyed in the night. Their second attempt is successful, but leads to the Others kidnapping Walt and destroying the raft, leaving him and Sawyer drifting back to the Island in shark infested waters only to be kidnapped by the tail section survivors. When they finally reunite with the others, he’s promptly forced to help the Others to rescue his son. To do this, he frees their leader and kidnaps high ranking survivors, killing Ana Lucia and Libby in the process and leaving him riddled with guilt. When he and Walt finally escape, he tells Walt what he did to save him, but Walt is disgusted and leaves him, driving Michael to kill himself, first with a car crash and then with a gun. When the Island won’t let him die, he’s forced to return to the place he tried so hard to escape knowing that he’s going to die, most likely by his own hand with a bomb. He gets a chance to make up for his mistakes by staying behind on the frieghter to keep the bomb on it frozen for as long as possible, saving all of the Oceanic Six plus Lapidus, Desmond, and Jin in the process, but that isn’t enough for the Island, who force his spirit to stay on the Island within the Whispers instead of letting him move on to the afterlife (although the epilogue implies Walt may be able to help him move on). Even after death, Michael can’t catch a break.
    • When it comes to purely gleeful buttmonkeys, there's no better example than season 3's Mikhail, who gets severely and bloodily beaten in every episode that features him - and apparently killed in most of them. And the audience cheers every time.
    • There's also Ben Linus who is beaten up so many times that it's Lampshaded more than once. Turns out that he got so tired of being the butt monkey that he killed Jacob because of it.
    • Then of course there is Jack. He gets thrust into a leadership role he never wanted, is forced to deal with psychological abuse from his parents, his father was an alcoholic who never showed him approval or love, his relationships with Kate, Juliet and his wife collapse and the flashforward reveals that, upon leaving the island, he became a broken miserable alcoholic with a death wish.
    • Eko as well, particularly in season 3. As if being inside the Hatch when it explodes and barely making it out alive isn't enough, he gets dragged to a cave by a polar bear where he is slowly being killed by it (and is miraculously saved by Locke and Charlie). And it only gets worse from there. And that's without mentioning his crappy childhood.
    • This trope applies to all of the main characters, really. The whole premise of the show is that all of the characters had miserable lives, and crashing on the island - whether they realized it at first or not - was a blessing, giving them each a fresh start.

  • Mad Men:
    • Lois the incompetent secretary. She screws up and humiliates herself over and over, including accidentally running someone's foot over with a lawnmower...though somehow she's still there after that.
    • Pete Campbell. Everyone hates him. Viewers included.
  • Atsuko Maeda (having the same name as her actress) of the Japanese drama Majisuka Gakuen. She is just a quiet, reserved girl who is so desperate to avoid fighting that she lets the bullying girls harass her like taking away her wallet without resisting. This proves useless as later on she decides she has to stand up for herself through impressive combat skills.
  • Married... with Children: Save for Peg, the whole Bundy family counts. They're all starving because Peg spends all of Al's income (their only income) on herself such as new clothes and fast food.
    • Al is the biggest one on the show. To list all the atrocious events that have happened to him would require its own website. He always goes hungry, he makes about (or less than) minimum wage, his wife never makes him any dinner, and always steals the money he could've used to buy dinner to instead go out and shop for useless trinkets like a dead bird or a painting that only has a black square on it. No, Al's not even broke. He's worse than broke. He has more than hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt!
    • Kelly isn't much better off. Whether it's going from being the most popular girl in school to being reduced to working as a waitress in a miserable run-down diner, having her potentially hit TV show destroyed by Executive Meddling, being fired from her job for refusing to wear a bikini in a TV ad, losing all her hair and growing a beard when she tries an experimental zit remedy, getting bitten by poisonous insects that either force her to tell the truth or drive her insane, being forced to take the Bundy dog's place in a dog food commercial, being rejected by a hot rich guy because of the expensive makeover that was meant to attract him, being tricked by Bud into babysitting a group of bratty children while he takes all the money for his date, getting electrocuted after accidentally stepping in a fountain while wearing Al's "shoe headlights", or suffering through consuming a series of bad-tasting diet drinks for a commercial and then being digitally replaced by the company president's daughter when the ad actually airs, Kelly is proof that the women of the family are just as apt to fall victim to the Bundy Curse.
    • Bud Bundy. If he isn't having his scholarship money stolen by his parents or missing out on a once in a lifetime chance to meet the president, he is getting fired from the Department of Motor Vehicles for working too hard and being forced to work as a chimney sweep, losing a toe to frost bite after being tricked by a girl, getting caught masturbating in the library, being raped by a huge fat woman while trying to sneak past a bodyguard to have sex with a hot female singer, growing breasts from an allergic reaction to an experimental pesticide or being dumped live on radio in front of his entire college. Still, he is marginally luckier than his father....
  • Major Frank Burns from M*A*S*H. Although he usually deserves it by virtue of being Frank, being accused of rape by a female superior officer who was trying to seduce him is a bit over the top.
    • Also Major Charles Winchester after Frank's departure. He too often deserved it, just not quite as often.
      • Ironically, it was because of his Butt Monkey status that Frank Burns was written out: Larry Linville expressed his opinion that Frank Burns had been developed about as far as possible, and could never advance beyond the uptight, reactionary portrayal that had become so well-known.
    • Igor is this as well, taking constant abuse from people dissatisfied with the food, despite the fact that he only serves it and does not cook it.
  • Merlin:
    • Merlin, especially when "helping" Arthur with his training exercises.
    • Morgana Pendragon. Even before her Heel–Face Turn, the writers did not seem to like her. Unlike Merlin, however, it's never Played for Laughs.
  • Detective Randy Disher on Monk is definitely that series' Butt Monkey. When the show doesn't need comedy relief, Randy has been shown to be on the level of his friends, able to keep up with Monk himself at one point. When they believe they need a joke, however, which is most of the time, you can be assured he will be the butt of it, even if that means portraying him as someone literally Too Dumb to Live, let alone get a job as a police officer.
  • Beaker is the resident Butt Monkey of The Muppet Show, always the victim of the experiments of his "friend", Dr. Bunsen Honeydew.
    • Sesame Street, too, has its resident Butt Monkey in Bert, who is usually the butt of Ernie's antics. Also, Oscar the Grouch is treated this way occasionally. Mr. Johnson is probably the biggest Butt Monkey of all on Sesame Street is Mr. Johnson, as his role is to be the foil for Grover's occupational incompetence.
    • The Muppet Show also has Gonzo the Great, the hapless and luckless daredevil stunt artist. Not only do all of his stunts fail spectacularly but, especially in the first series, he was incredibly unpopular and was often the butt of many jokes backstage. His original design in series one was small, furry and wonky-looking which made him look very vulnerable and small; however, as he began to get even more enthusiasm, he evolved into his more upbeat and lively personality. However, he is still luckless and the butt of jokes, he is just much more oblivious to them.
  • Joel, and later Mike and Jonah, from Mystery Science Theater 3000 usually ended up being the butt of most of the jokes made by robots Crow and Tom Servo. This didn't only happen in the host segments, sometimes the robots manage to include mockery of their human friend in their movie riffing. Mike and Jonah are particularly frequent targets, since Joel at least built them.
    • On the villainous side, this is the default role of the Mads' second banana. Clayton used TV's Frank as a combination punching bag and experimental subject, to the point where Frank's departure led to Forrester singing a song called "Who Will I Kill?"; Pearl treated both of her minions like dirt (splitting it into primarily-verbal abuse towards Observer and slapstick violence towards Bobo); and Kinga views Max as some sort of furniture that occasionally speaks.
  • If it's possible for an inanimate object to be a Butt Monkey, Buster the dummy from MythBusters qualifies. (And if he doesn't, Tory from the build team comes close at times.)
    • Isn't Grant usually the guinea pig?

  • C.C. Babcock on The Nanny is equal parts snobby and unlucky, from constantly getting outwitted by Niles to suffering the most slapstick humor throughout the show (much of it often caused by Niles, as well).
  • Tony DiNozzo on NCIS tends to be the team's Butt Monkey, often justified in that he is a Jerk Jock with a very Hidden Heart of Gold. Sometimes McGee fills this role instead; either way, at least one of them is often the butt of an episode's Running Gag.
    • FBI Agent Tobias Fornell started off as a frienemy, but eventually morphed into a reliable friend, partner, and Butt Monkey. This is rather extreme: there has never been a character who must not only put up with embarrassment from the ex-wife regularly, but who must be shot through the buttocks to stop a terrorist attack. Much more later on.
    • Jimmy Palmer has plenty of these moments as well.
    • Marty Deeks on NCIS: Los Angeles just loves this trope to bits. Though, Callen, Nell and Eric could fill this trope just as easily as well. It's even more hilarious in staged missions where the characters are under a different alias other than their main name.
    • Agent Percy is this on NCIS: New Orleans. Once she becomes an official NCIS Agent, she gets hazed regularly by the others, including Patton and Sebastian.

  • Odd Squad: While the show regularly subjects its characters, both kid and adult, to comedic slapstick, Oscar is the one who gets it the most throughout Season 1. He may help out agents with his gadgetry skills, but he absolutely cannot escape criticism from Olive, Otto and Ms. O in particular whenever he screws something up. In Season 2, Otis takes over the Butt Monkey role from Oscar following his departure from the show, being the target of pranks from his co-workers in at least two episodes. Season 3 divides the role evenly among the members of the Odd Squad Mobile Unit.
  • The Office (UK):
    • Gareth is set up for pranks at his expense regularly by co-worker Tim, some of which can seem quite mean-spirited... However Tim often gets away with it because Gareth is depicted as being gormless and irritating, and often mean-spirited himself along with it, so you could say that Tim is simply giving him payback. Gareth still catches a break every now and then, though.
    • Dawn is portrayed as such, at least later in the series where David Brent is constantly leaving her to clean up after him. She is much more sympathetic than Gareth though.
  • Toby in the US version of The Office. Pretty much anything he says is guaranteed to get an undeserved nasty and insulting response from Michael. And sometimes his just being there can provoke Michael.
    Michael: Toby is from corporate, so he's not really a part of our family... also he's divorced, so he's not really a part of his family.
    • Even when he agrees with and/or helps Michael, he gets this.
    • Michael's reaction to seeing that Toby has returned after an aborted escape to Costa Rica:
    • To a lesser extent, Phyllis also fulfills this role, having Michael constantly belittle and humiliate her. And let us not forget the time she got flashed by a pervert in the office parking lot and when Dwight drove her to a bad side of town to only leave her there without a phone, forcing her to walk miles back to the office.
  • Once Upon a Time: Belle is a sweet, kind-hearted girl who prefers to see the good in people. She has the cosmic bad luck of falling in love with Rumplestiltskin, who is not only the Dark One, the living vessel of all Dark Magic in the Enchanted Forest, but whose varied desires and insecurities have left him permanently stuck in the Heel–Face Revolving Door. Over the course of the series she's been lied to, manipulated, enchanted, and kidnapped several times by Rumple's assorted enemies. And she keeps taking him back, because they really do love each other.
  • Practically everyone at different times in One Foot in the Grave, with the exceptions of Margaret and Mr. Swainey. The show's entire raison d'être is little more than a demonstration of the permanent surreal sadism of the universe towards Victor, and to a (marginally) lesser extent Mrs. Warboys and Patrick.
  • Only Fools and Horses has its fair share of this trope:
    • Denzil, who is a perpetual victim of Del's schemes. As with every other Running Gag on the show, this is lampshaded no end, with Rodney frequently sympathising with his plight and Denzil himself trying hard to stop it happening. Trigger is arguably a subversion of the trope, because he's a victim of Del just as often but doesn't appear to realise he's being messed about, happily (though unwittingly) acting to his own detriment in the interests of "helping out a friend". Moreover, Trigger's sporadic attempts at trading usually result in Del somehow getting screwed over, so they're probably pretty even on that count.
    • Rodney, since Del both uses and teases him quite a lot.
    • Roy Slater in the first chapter of Rock And Chips was one, being eternally victimised by Del and all his friends, hence giving him a good reason to join the police force after leaving school.
    • Grandad and Uncle Albert also qualify.
  • Oobi has Grampu, the well-meaning yet unlucky grandfather of the title character. His Amusing Injuries are often played for laughs.

  • Gary "Jerry/Larry" Gergich on Parks and Recreation seems to exist primarily to be abused by the rest of the cast. Part of the humor comes from the fact that he seems like a totally normal, likable guy, but he is quite clumsy and is often the perpetrator and the victim of countless office blunders. Additionally, he's treated as a Butt-Monkey not only by the insensitive or thoughtless characters, but by everyone, even the "nice" characters. Even Chris manages to be mean to him, if only by being Innocently Insensitive and obliviously forcing him into a leadership position where he can't perform.
    Ron: "A schlemiel is the guy who spills soup at a fancy party. A schlemazel is the guy he spills it on. Jerry is both the schlemiel and schlemazel of our office."
    • On the other hand, he does have a great family life to balance it all out. He's been Happily Married for over 25 years to his wife Gayle (played by the beautiful Christie Brinkley) with three sweet daughters who absolutely adore him, and has the largest penis one doctor has ever seen.
    • Kyle, another government worker (though not in the Parks Department), is even more of a Butt-Monkey. It's telling that in their only scene together to date, Jerry treated Kyle like everyone else usually treats Jerry (all because he thought a turkey burger was better than a regular beef burger).
    • In the episode with the Time Capsule, Leslie ensures Jerry's loserdom will be his legacy in the future:
      Leslie: So enjoy watching it. Assuming you still have electricity. And sorry about the weird blank gap in the middle. A man named Jerry Gergich screwed up the recording somehow. He had one job to do.
    • In the seventh and final season, he does get three significant Throw the Dog a Bone moments: 1) In "Donna and Joe", Donna marks his banquet card with his real name Garry, making everyone finally call him by his actual name, 2) getting to become intermediary mayor of Pawnee in "Two Funerals", and 3) the Distant Finale in "One Last Ride" showing him getting elected as mayor of Pawnee for real and apparently doing such a great job at it that he ended up filling out the seat for the rest of his life.
  • In the mockumentary series People Like Us, documentarian Roy Mallard often falls prey to accidents in the course of filming.
  • Person of Interest. Initially, Detective Lionel Fusco fits this role, as he rolls with a dirty cop crew simply out of loyalty. At some point, he gets shot in the ass. He eventually outgrows this role and becomes a competent cop.
    • Poor Leon Tau. Trouble always finds him.
  • Power Rangers, being a long runner, has several of these. Though most of these grow out of this near or during the season finale.
    • The most popular are probably Bulk and Skull, the comic relief duo from the original Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers. They frequently tried out harebrained schemes for their own gain, or to humiliate the main characters. Said schemes always backfire. Bulk and Skull are also frequent victims of monster attacks or other schemes thought up by the villains, to the point of noticing this themselves. And when they do succeed at something, they are kind of surprised at this. They do lose this position in Power Rangers in Space. In what was supposed to be the franchise's Grand Finale , they lead the human resistance against legions of Mooks, showing you don't need to have superpowers in order to be a hero.
    • Joel Rawlings, the Green Ranger in Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue. Almost every episode, he tries to hook up with Hot Scientist Angela Fairweather, only to be turned down at any opportunity in rather comical but humiliating ways. When he is not paying attention to Miss Fairweather, he tries to play pranks or otherwise undermine the authority of The Captain, which backfire with similar results. He does finally hook up with his crush after the Grand Finale of the season.
    • Power Rangers RPM. Poor Ziggy. It seems that barely an episode can go by without the Green Ranger totally embarrassing himself in some way. Best reflected by his first ever morph. Previous rangers, whether they Jumped at the Call, were thrown in the cockpit or even stole their powers, always morphed with a fair amount of dignity and grace the first time. What's Ziggy's first line upon realizing what he has become?
      Ziggy: Woah! I'm a Power Ranger! I don't wanna be a Power Ranger! I do not want to be a Power Ranger!
He then proceeds to get kicked all over the place.
  • The Whammy from Press Your Luck is often bashed, kaboomed, or otherwise dealt comeuppance in various animations.
  • Toby Cavanaugh from Pretty Little Liars. Nothing good happens for the guy: being forced into a sexual relationship by Jenna, then being framed for a murder he didn't commit, falling off a staircase, blackmailed by A to learn the truth about his mother's death, almost getting arrested twice... the list goes on and on.
  • Connor in Primeval's employment contract must have Butt Monkey in the job description. He doubles up as the Plucky Comic Relief and part time Woobie as well.
  • Post-season 1 Bellick in Prison Break. He was something of a Smug Snake in season 1, definitely not likeable. But the payback he gets is far worse than what he deserves. It is implied that he got raped by a prisoner at the end of season 2, was forced to drink water from a mud-puddle in season 3 and all such stuff, despite actually starting to become more likeable. In season 4 he seems to have regained a "good guy" status (and is on the team) and occasionally actually helps the plot.
    • Can't mention PB without touching on T-Bag...sure he deserved all the crap heaped on him,and if anything, showed himself to posses a rather preternatural ability to survive, but crikey the man took more than a fair few blows.
      • Or even better- Mahone. Starts out as Michael's only real mental rival with possibly the same condition/disorder as Michael. But he's a junkie. And a Government flunkie. They break his kids leg to force his compliance(he kills the agent responsible in a Crowning Moment of Awesome) He's shot. Then he's fired. Then arrested and imprisoned. And that's just season TWO! Season Three sees him trapped in prison, getting addicted to heroin to replace his ANTI PSYCHOTIC MEDS, getting OFF the heroin, escaping (barely) from the Panamanian prison. Season 4? Well to force him out of hiding the One World conspiracy has his wife and son attacked. His wife is made to watch their SEVEN YEAR OLD SON be slowly beaten to death.(The scene in the diner when he promises her revenge is award worthy, seriously, William Fichtner...god damn) Eventually though, he gets his revenge-he slowly tortures the guy who killed his son, to make the man APOLOGISE to Mahone's wife. Then he kills the guy. It's made even more awesome because the man is literally mid sentence, launching into a 'we're not so different, you and I' speech when Mahone kicks him off a jetty and into the ocean. Crowning Moment of Awesome indeed
  • Detective Carlton Lassiter in Psych. He's constantly being upstaged by a Deadpan Snarker Slacker who, despite having no formal police training or official standing with the department, effortlessly sweeps him aside in any investigation they become involved in, usually managing to charm the socks off everyone present in the process. Whatever leads he follows or moves he makes in those cases usually turn out wrong. And the Deadpan Snarker he loathes so intensely is usually proved right. None of the other characters seem particularly inclined to show him any respect whatsoever (which is something that, admittedly, is partly his own fault, given how abrasive and uptight he is), and any misfortunes or unhappy circumstances that occur, will usually occur to him.
    • To a lesser extent Gus, as part of his role as the Straight Man, usually finds himself taking this role when Shawn manipulates him into doing something he doesn't particularly wish to do.

  • In QI, Alan Davies, especially to start with. He was clearly placed on the show to serve as a foil for genius host Stephen Fry, making inane points and earning forfeits with practiced ignorance. As such, he is commonly on the receiving end of numerous traps, into which he glibly walks. Later seasons have shown that he can play well, though, if he wants to and the studio happens to be lenient; he actually has the most wins, although the fact that he's present in all the episodes likely has something to do with that.
    • Alan is also the most likely to give answers that are marked wrong but proven right after the episode, when it doesn't matter. In "Knowledge", the contestants are given refunds for points lost to Science Marches On, resulting in Alan finishing the episode 600 points ahead of everyone else.

  • Ben on Reaper. If something nasty is going to happen to one of the trio of Sam, Sock, and Ben, it always heads straight for Ben.
  • Arnold Rimmer from Red Dwarf spends his entire life trying to live up to his parents' insane expectations. After legally divorcing them, he spends the rest of his life trying to become an officer in the Space Corps. And things don't go much better for him after his death.
    • One episode ends with a Reset Button and the crew realise that they'll have no memories of that episode's events and can do anything they want. Kryten chooses to insult Rimmer. The worst part about it was later on we find out the Reset Button didn't work and they do remember what happened.
    • And then he finds out that his real father was the unintelligent gardener nicknamed Dungo, making Arnold's life as a lowly technician on a spaceship a relative success.
    • Lister is this as well. Besides being the last human being alive stuck on a ship with someone he hates, he's also gone through tons of Amusing Injuries, stuck with space mumps for three weeks in one episode,given birth to twins fathered by his female self, been married to an ape-like mutant, made out with a giant mutant insect, made out with Rimmer, though thankfully It Was All A Dream, and found out that due to Time Travel he's his own father and Kochanski, the love of his life, is his mother.
  • Bill Schulz on Red Eye w/ Greg Gutfeld (Fox News' Daily Show-esque late-night talk show). Bill is Greg's "disgusting sidekick", Red Eye's New York Times Correspondent. He is constantly derided, especially when Greg introduces the panel and closes the show, to the point that he goes along with it.
    • "He smells of cat urine and broken dreams. I'm talking, of course, about my disgusting sidekick, Bill Schulz."
    • "Bill Schulz, you suck."
      • While it's easy to call Bill the show's Butt-Monkey due to how often Greg goes after him (due to Greg portraying himself as a Comedic Sociopath), the show is more of a revolving door of Butt Monkeys. Bill is a Butt Monkey to Greg, Greg is a Butt Monkey to the show's Libertarian Ombudsman Andy, and Andy is often the target of Bill's ridicule, as well as Greg's. Then there's all the regular panelists who are often nice to Bill while poking fun at Greg (most notably the show's interplanetary correspondent; GWAR frontman Oderus Urungus).
  • Red's nephew Harold suffered through this role for the first several seasons of The Red Green Show.
  • Tommy Gavin on Rescue Me. Every. Single. Episode. By the end of the second season, his wife has left him, twice. The first time, she took the kids with her and didn't tell him where she went. The second time, it was because she blamed him for the death of their son. Said son was killed in front of him by a drunk driver. Another child is miscarried, and he has seen two people shot to death in front of him. He is constantly haunted by the ghosts of people close to him who have died.
  • Retro Game Master:
    • Nakayama, particularly during the 24-hour live special. Cameraman Abe forcibly stays overnight at his house, then makes him pay for the pricey ingredients for Arino's lunch. On top of that, he is mocked for a minor error during the previous live special. The Fatal Fury Special is Nakyama's time in the spotlight for Nakayama. Admittedly, FFS is Nakayama's favorite game, but the episode allows him to show off while he gets Arino to the Ryo Sakazaki fight.
    • How about Watanabe? Seems like she can't go one episode without Arino poking fun at her weight, not that the way she acts helps her much in that regard.
  • Reviews on the Run host Tommy Tallarico frequently makes jokes at the expense of co-host Victor Lucas, implying he has a huge head when in fact his cranial proportions are quite normal.
  • In Round the Twist, who gets targeted by bullies, attacked by rubbish and mauled by pigs? Poor Pete Twist. Out of all the characters in the show, even including the bad guys, he probably gets the worst deal.

  • Dice from Sam & Cat turned into this in some later episodes. One has a subplot that revolves around everyone refusing to let him drink (he literally licks a stone in the end to get some liquid), in another Sam sprays him with a water hose for no reason and both Cat and Nona threaten to punch him in the face- again for no reason. Sam once threw a book in his face which gave him a bloody nose, Cat almost broke his wrist and yelled at him just because she wanted him to find a damn shoe. Seems like unfortunately, Dice started to become the new Freddie Benson
  • In most Sketch Comedy, one of the actors fills in this role more often on the set. In the case of Saturday Night Live's early days, it was either a female cast member or one of the token black cast members (if any). These days for SNL, it's a crapshoot as to who gets buttmonkeyed (usually it'll be a cast member who's not very popular with the audience [like Chris Kattan whenever he plays Paul Begala on the "Hardball" sketches], but even that doesn't happen much).
  • Godehard Wolpers, producer on the German show Schmidteinander with Herbert Feuerstein, long-year editor-in-chief of the German MAD. Whenever something went wrong in the show, they used to shout: "Whose fault was it? 1 - 2 - 3 - WOLPERS!"
  • Ted, the lawyer on Scrubs, is so often the victim of abuse he was dubbed in one episode the hospital sad sack.
    • J.D. himself gets the Butt Monkey treatment often, usually in the form of the Janitor pulling some kind of prank on him.
    • It is even law that every intern is a Butt Monkey.
  • George on Seinfeld particularly in scenes involving his parents/childhood, although all the other characters routinely mock his character flaws and his elaborate schemes always end in the most humiliating way possible. Some episodes, like The Puffy Shirt seem designed to set him up for a fall.
    • An even bigger example is George's longtime girlfriend, Susan. She goes from being a respected NBC executive to getting vomited on, getting sexually harassed by the Bubble Boy, having her father's cabin burn down, finding out her father was gay, losing her job, and then, in the season 7 finale, getting Killed Off for Real as a result of poisoning from licking cheap wedding invitations.
  • The Shield has two dueling butt-monkeys:
    • Detective Ronnie Gardocki is largely treated like a red-headed stepson of the Strike Team, forced to run the other guy's errands, had his car shot up by gangsters, mocked for his lack of a sex life, and suffers great physical harm over the course of the series (disfigured, mauled by dogs, hit over the head with a large cross) and ultimately made to be the fall-guy for Vic Mackey's crimes, as so far as Vic refusing to let him flee town when he wanted to leave, as far as Vic basically telling Ronnie that he had put his life in Vic's hands and trust him, lest he fuck up Vic's own quest to get immunity/a job working with the Department of Homeland Security after getting run out of the LAPD.
    • Holland "Dutch" Wagenbach was "The Barn's" go-to target for derision and disrespect, despite probably being the best actual cop in the building. In the pilot episode (later confirmed on DVD commentary) it's shown that his own partner, Claudette Wyms, is responsible for a continuous wave of mean-spirited pranks pulled on him (including putting dog shit in his desk drawer) as part of a long-standing LAPD tradition to keep certain talented officers "humble". Dutch's relationship with Claudette is tense on a good day, due to Dutch having his various overtures of friendship and concern rebuked by his partner, who wouldn't even tell Dutch that she had a potentially fatal medical condition (lupus) until several years into their partnership. When Claudette gets promoted to Captain, Dutch is forcibly partnered up with Steve Billings, a lazy detective determined to spend his last years on the force doing as little work as possible and forcing Dutch to cover up his attempts to scam the department (most notably with a fake disability lawsuit). His relationship with series main character Vic Mackey is more complicated: while Vic acknowledges that Dutch is the precinct's best detective (and is terrified of him possibly uncovering the Strike Team's crimes), Vic generally goes back and forth from bullying Dutch for sport and feeding his ego, in order to manipulate Dutch to do his dirty work for him. Dutch's butt-monkey status also extends to his relationship with women; the few successful relationships he has are with women formerly involved with Vic, furthering the rivalry between the two men.
      • Dutch's personal life is even worse, especially since he's one of the few characters on the show whose private life has been revealed in graphic detail: spent his youth/teenage years being mercilessly bullied, raised by an emotionally distant father for whom Dutch became a police officer in order to try and gain his father's approval, failed marriage to an alcoholic who got knocked up by a guy she met while in rehab (which led to him becoming the Butt-Monkey of the Barn in the first place, when another detective revealed this to the other officers), and generally has crappy relationships with women in general as far as women seeing him mainly as a friend/mentor and not a love interest.
      • He also has an unhealthy obsession with serial killers and strangles a cat
  • Jerry the perpetual understudy from Slings & Arrows, who averages a hilarious injury every three or four episodes and inevitably gets parts snatched away from him as soon as he starts enjoying them.
  • Smallville's version of Jimmy Oslen becomes something of a snowballing butt monkey, especially once Lex the Woobie left the show after Season 7.
    • Apart from getting his share of the standard amount of grievous physical trauma experienced by most characters on the show, Jimmy's buttmonkeyness was evident early on by his being generally treated like dirt as the designated love interest for Chloe Sullivan, but ballooned in Season Eight, where his not-unfounded jealousy over Clark is the least of his problems, what with getting constantly and very obviously lied to by everyone and most especially by his fiancée. His joy at discovering that Clark is the Red-Blue Blurr is crushed through an elaborate deception by his closest friends, and his boss refuses to take him seriously. Things ratchet up several notches when his wedding gets literally crashed by Doomsday who just about eviscerates him. After being thus benched for a good chunk of the season (in which his wife oddly does not seem to spend much time visiting him in hospital), he becomes addicted to painkillers, discovers that Davis Bloom is a serial killer and when he tries to warn his friends nobody believes him, not even his wife. He gets repeatedly beaten, tortured and tied up, keeps getting lied to over and over again by Chloe, is dismissed as a crazy junkie by all his friends, even witnesses that Chloe apparently has romantic feelings for the guy he discovered is a killer, precipitating the total collapse of his marriage (which doesn't even rate more than a handwaved mention of their divorce). To top it all off, gets gratuitously murdered in the finale by the same guy he tried to warn everyone about. To add insult to injury, his funeral scene reveals that he wasn't even the "real" Jimmy Olsen from the comics that he had hitherto been presented as being, but rather a "Henry James Olson", evidently an older brother to the canonical "James Bartholomew Olsen".
    • Apparently it really sucks to be Jimmy Olsen, even when you're actually not.
    • Lana Lang is supposed to be The Woobie, but really comes off more like this. Of course, given many fans' opinions of her, this also makes her The Chew Toy.
  • Frank Spencer, the main character of the classic BBC sitcom Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em, is a likeable disaster magnet who has at one point rollerskated under a semi truck and hung off the side of an airplane.
  • In Sons of Anarchy Half Sack, as SAMCRO's probationer is the club's ''official Butt Monkey. After his death,he loses this spot to Chucky. And then there are the unofficial Butt Monkeys of the show, who are generally just plain unfortunate.
    • #1 is Otto Delaney, who is imprisoned at the beginning of the show and has enough felonies racked up to stay there indefinitely, most of them assaults and/or killings on behalf of the club against other inmates. Then he, being the most vulnerable member of the club, gets blinded by enemies of the Sons in order to provoke them. His wife sleeps with another member of the MC. His wife gets killed by a competitor of hers. He is discovered while killing another inmate as retaliation for an attack on Jax, going to death row. As season four Anti-Villain Lincoln Potter points out: "I've never seen another criminal who has suffered that much for his organization." (and then he tells him that his wife slept with another member and her killer hasn't been taken out yet). By season five, he's basically gone insane since he doesn't care anymore what happens to him or his surroundings. After Tara convinced him to withdraw his testimony against the club, he opts to do so in an especially twisted way by killing an innocent nurse (thereby invalidating his testimony)... and later bites of his tongue when he is questioned for the ongoing investigation. However, the brother of the nurse he killed, a retired lawman, vows to make the remainder of his life as bad as possible and has blind and mute Otto repeatedly raped by other inmates. It says a lot that him finally getting the upper end and killing him, only to be shot moments later by the prison staff, is the most satisfying and relieving ending for him (and probably the audience as well).
    • #2 is Opie Winston, being out of prison at the beginning of the show after a five year-sentence (because his getaway driver abandoned him to the police), with his wife constantly trying to make him turn his back on the club. Then he is spotted during a hit, and an ATF agent uses this to pressure him to cooperate, framing him as a snitch. Some mistrustful members of the club think he is going to rat them out, planning a hit on him but accidentally killing his wife instead. As a consequence, he gets deeper into the club business but finds out that his brothers were responsible for her death. He remarries and finds out his new wife aborted his baby. His father is killed when he threatens to expose the machinations of another member. Finally, after the same member that killed his wife accidentally kills yet another significant other of his target, Otto gets beaten to death in prison as part of the retaliation for the attack.
  • The Sopranos:
    • Tony Soprano once told a story about a boy with a speech impediment he and his bully friends used to abuse in school (namely, made him sing silly songs and laughed their asses off). It took him quite a while to understand this wasn't the nicest thing to do. More recently, Artie Bucco serves as the resident Butt Monkey; he becomes increasingly pathetic to watch as the show progresses.
    • Also, Bobby Baccallieri, who, along with Vito, is constantly mocked due to his weight and his non-mobster-like niceness toward others. Even Tony, who isn't exactly a male model, can't seem to stop harping on how fat Bobby is - to his face, of course, as often as possible.
    • Adriana, once the feds get their meat-hooks in her.
  • Speechless: Poor Ray Dimeo being a smart, but nerdy Only Sane Man constantly get large amounts of crap from everyone around him and that includes his disabled brother J.J. The majority of it comes from his obnoxious and mean-spirited sister Dylan though.
  • Paul on Spin City, most memorably when he was sued for being shot in the head. (And the plaintiff was rewarded more than he asked for.)
  • Stargate SG-1:
    • Daniel Jackson is often getting killed, captured, kidnapped, or injured.
    • During his short run, Lt. Colonel Mitchell also seemed to get more than his fair share of beatings, so much so that the actor even described the character as the "whipping boy". This may have been a way of presenting his relative lack of experience in comparison to the older characters. And possibly a way to cheer up fans who didn't like seeing Jack replaced.
    • And amongst the supporting characters, there is Sergeant Siler. After the first few seasons, whenever he appears on screen, there's a good chance something bad (or at the very least, painful) happens to him.
    • In the series as a whole, the Malps get this treatment. Being robots, this is to be expected. But throughout the series, malps have been shot, kidnapped, eroded, and even dropped off in space!
      McKay: Well, there goes that MALP.
  • Miles O'Brien from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine was the character of choice when the writers needed to put somebody through hell for an episode. This led to the "O'Brien Must Suffer" in-joke among the writers, who intentionally tried to inflict something truly awful on him at least once per season. If an alien attacks one crew member, it's almost always either O'Brien or Worf (although the latter is for a different reason).
    • In one particularly impressive run, season 2 has three episodes in a row that make O'Brien miserable:
      • "Armageddon Game": O'Brien gets infected with an alien bio-weapon and (along with Bashir) nearly gets assassinated twice.
      • "Whispers": O'Brien gets kidnapped and replaced with an exact duplicate, who goes through his own brand of hell.
      • "Paradise": O'Brien and Sisko get stuck in a Cult Colony led by an Evil Luddite (although Sisko suffers a lot more this time).
    • Weyoun is a bit of one in the later seasons, since every character hates him so much. He's particularly known for being repeatedly killed and re-cloned — until Damar's forces destroy his cloning facility and then Garak kills him for the last time.
  • On the original Star Trek, Chekov did more screaming-in-pain than the rest of the crew combined. He even got a torture scene in the episode "Mirror, Mirror". This was explained as a convenient way to show there was mortal peril. Apparently, Kirk, Spock and McCoy all being older, dignified men would have made it improper for them to scream, but Chekov is in his early twenties and still very boyish, so it's all right for him. Doesn't make it any easier on the poor guy, though. In a nice inversion, he's the only one who doesn't get hit with the aging disease in "The Deadly Years". He still ends up getting subjected to a thousand and one medical checks, though.
    Chekov: "Some more blood, Chekov! The needle won't hurt, Chekov! Thake off your shirt, Chekov! Roll over, Chekov! Breathe deeply, Chekov! Blood sample, Chekov! Marrow sample, Chekov! Skin sample, Chekov!" If – if I live long enough, I'm going to run out of samples!
    Sulu: You'll live.
    Chekov: Oh yes, I'll live. But I won't enjoy it!
    • Sometimes Scotty, whenever he was left in charge of the Enterprise. He more than made up for it on several occasions, usually managing to outsmart the villain of the week.
  • Geordi from Star Trek: The Next Generation who gets pwned nearly as much as Worf (suffering from The Worf Effect). He's even hopeless with women. One particularly cruel episode, "Skin Of Evil", had an alien taunt his blindness by moving his visor around, just because. The series seems to never let us go on the fact that he's blind (until the movies, well actually he gets taunted again in Star Trek: Generations, which may or may not have led him to go get cybernetic replacements by Star Trek: First Contact.). In "Interface", his mom disappears as some plot of the week. Worst yet is that nobody gives a damn about his mom afterwards. And to add insult to injury, in Voyager's "Timeless" he tries to stop Harry Kim and fails. Ouch. In "The Mind's Eye", he's heading on his merry way to Risa for some rest, relaxation and poontang. He gets kidnapped by Romulans and brainwashed into being a Manchurian Agent. See here for further proof of his incredibly poor luck.
    • This compilation of Geordi getting hurt is 10 minutes long. This compilation of Worf getting hurt (throughout the entire franchise!) is only 6 minutes long. Think about that...
    • Next to Worf and Geordi, Deanna Troi filled this role many times. She was always being possessed by aliens, abused by aliens in crashed shuttles, abducted by aliens for political gambits, being nearly forced to marry an alien, having her psychic powers robbed by aliens, suffering nightmares at the hands of aliens, forced to listen to a virtual music box in her head for days by an alien, being impregnated by an alien without her consent, the list goes on. Her only real use on the show was to counsel the random crew member of the week and to tell Picard when she sensed weird things happening while on the bridge– apart from being this show's Ms. Fanservice, that is.
    • And when Troi actually said something useful, she was often ignored. In the second season episode, "Samaritan Snare," Geordi is beamed over to a disabled ship to help the apparently dim-witted aliens out. Troi walks onto the bridge, see Geordi on the ship through the viewscreen and tells Riker Geordi is in danger and needs to be beamed back immediately. Riker ignores her warning because those aliens are just so stupid and what harm can they do? Well, let's just say the main plot of the show is Riker's efforts to get Geordi back, which could have been avoided if he'd listened to the empath!
  • Star Trek: Voyager:
    • Fans were fond of observing that Ensign Harry Kim was killed and brought back to life with something approaching regularity (one unauthorized Star Trek: Voyager episode guide book even compared him to Kenny McCormick). Seems even being a major character isn't enough for an Ensign to survive. And even when death was not in the cards for him, Harry has also been tormented by a Monster Clown, stabbed and nearly eaten alive from the inside by Species 8472, sent to a violent space colony prison, and manages to catch an alien STD. Speaking of which, there's his terrible luck with women. And for all the varieties of hell he's put through over the course of seven years, the poor dude never gets a promotion above Ensign!
    • Subverted in the episode "Timeless", where everyone BUT Harry Kim (and Chakotay) dies. Until the end of the episode, when, of course, they both die.
    • In universe, one of the show's longest running gags among the crew, is Neelix's supposedly terrible cooking. Among the audience, his reputation was summed up by a game reviewer for Elite Force, saying that one of the best things about the game was the fact that, "you can shoot Neelix."
  • Star Trek: Enterprise: Most of the captains of Star Trek have their moments of buttmonkery, but ol Jonathan Archer is one of the worst of the lot. All he wants to do is peacefully explore the galaxy making friends of the many species across the galaxy in the ship his father built, but he continuously ends up putting himself and his ship in ludicrously dangerous situations both by chance and due to his Chronic Hero Syndrome, gets captured constantly, nearly gets killed or sentenced to death countless times, and if the plot requires somebody to get badly injured and/or beaten up by the Villain of the Week that episode, it's him, especially during the first season.
    • Almost as frequently, it's Malcolm Reed who is the designated victim, although he's more an accident prone victim of circumstances than a constant villain target. He seems like a Redshirt with Plot Armour, forever doomed to be injured or trapped in order to provide dramatic tension. This may also be a symptom of The Worf Effect, given that he is the ship's tactical officer and thus the one who should be most capable at looking out for his own well-being.
  • Boomer (David Morse) on St. Elsewhere was the ultimate Butt Monkey; losing his wife, having his son abducted, and even getting raped in prison. Kind of puts the "butt" in Butt Monkey. Poor Boomer.
  • The Strange Calls: Main character Toby is constantly put down and taken advantage of by his boss, his sidekick Gregor, and almost anyone they meet on a case. One gag has Gregor giving a very long list of people in town that hate Toby (including one couple who like everyone).
  • The Suite Life of Zack and Cody:
    • Cody often has trouble brought onto him by Zack.
    • Maddie. If something bad will happen, it WILL happen to her. If there's someone to blame for anything, it will be her. Especially when she's trying to keep London or the twins out of trouble. Or when trying to teach London or the twins a lesson.
    • Mr. Moseby's smug/curmudgeonly mannerisms aside, he most certainly has his hands full between managing the hotel and keeping the twins, Maddie, London and the other main characters in check, and certainly deep down cares for his friends and residents. He also takes a great amount of the pratfalls and humiliation when things go wrong, and has to deal with Mr. Tipton's domineering on a regular basis. It doesn't get much better on The Suite Life on Deck.
  • Supernatural:
    • It's usually played quite serious with Dean (in that he really doesn't like himself much either) but, bloody hell, in "Sin City"? Dean, sweetie, remembering an exorcism that will send a demon back to hell should really be one of your top priorities, you know? Slightly justified at this point because it was still the early days and demons weren't necessarily any more important than other supernatural beings (except the Yellow Eyed Demon, and they were using the Colt for that, not an exorcism) Dean still is a serious Butt-Monkey, though.
    • In season 5, Sam seems to be turning into this. A Groin Attack and being forced to do a commercial for genital herpes, as well as getting chlamydia (from a 500-year-old witch, no less) all within episodes of each other.
    • Castiel arguably suffers the worst on a more regular basis. In his first season, he gets the crap beaten out of him twice, is disturbed and disillusioned by the betrayal of a sibling and the intentions of his superiors, is ripped from his vessel and tortured for it when he considers trying to help the Winchesters, betrays one of his only friends because he thought he had to, and is finally forced to turn his back on his entire family and the only way of life he ever knew in order to do the right thing and help Dean. And then things get worse for him after he joins the heroes. He's been killed, depowered, tortured multiple times, had to fight a civil war (and do regrettable things), Mind Raped, manipulated, hunted and ostracized by his family, wracked with guilt over his mistakes, rejected by the few people he cares about, driven insane by absorbing over a century's-worth of Hell memories, watched his siblings slaughter each other, turned forcibly human and made homeless and alone, been cursed by a witch, and in season 11, becomes so emotionally destroyed that he decides the only way he can be useful to Sam and Dean with their current problem is to agree to be Lucifer's vessel. He's like the writers' go-to punching bag when they need to mess somebody up, particularly if it involves getting bloody.
    • Prophets in general. They were BORN to be butt monkeys for the angels. Kevin is a normal kid with a great future ahead of him and wants to be the first Asian-American President...then he gets turned into a prophet after the Leviathan tablet is uncovered. Kevin goes through a host of awful things, such as getting sold at an auction, having a finger cut off by Crowley, being tortured by Crowley, having his mother kidnapped and tortured by Crowley...basically, Kevin is Crowley's punching bag. And then in S9 he gets killed by Gadreel, an angel possessing Sam Winchester.
      • Then we have Donatello and Chuck. Donatello is a random professor with a normal job and a cat. He's also an atheist. He gets struck by lightning, becoming God's prophet. No more atheism...but he gets tortured by Amara and ends up losing his soul along with various other horrible things that happen to him throughout the rest of the series. Chuck...oh, sweet Chuck...the poor guy hates writing. He's terrible at it. He wants nothing to do with the supernatural. He gets visions of literally everything the Winchesters do, including lots of sex. Chuck is seeing their lives non-stop and having massive headaches, along with angelic torture being promised if he kills himself. Of course Chuck is God Himself and the prophet thing is an act and he ends up defying the angels orders and saving the Winchesters anyway, and seems to end up dead since one prophet can't exist if one is already alive. Being God, Chuck can't die, so he is very much alive and just goes away for family time with his sister at the end of S11. Even spoilered Chuck has a few butt monkey moments, mostly involving his pre-Winchester life with his sister.
  • Super Sentai has made a couple throughout its 40+ run:
    • Kaoru's retainer Tanba from Samurai Sentai Shinkenger exists to be told off and hit with a Paper Fan of Doom. Of course, given how abrasive he is towards everyone, its not hard to see why.
    • Joh Ohara of Choujuu Sentai Liveman got more heartbreaks than anyone else in the season, which is REALLY saying something. He was also the one to get bitten by a dinosaur. He starts to lose this in time for the show to get much Darker and Edgier than it was before. He did get some breaks beforehand, however, such as being the only one whose rival and former friend in Volt performs a Heel Face Turn and lives. Additionally, Joh was the member to appear on Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger when it did its tribute episode to Liveman.
    • Speaking of Gokaiger, Doc Dogoier is this in spades. No one, not the Zangyack, not the Monster of the Week, not even his own teammates give him any respect. He's also a poor fighter compared to the rest of the Gokaigers. Gai Ikari also counts.
    • In Kaitou Sentai Lupinranger VS Keisatsu Sentai Patranger, has Keiichiro Asaka who is apparently the shows residental Butt-Monkey and he never catches a break when it comes to capturing the Lupinrangers.

  • On Talkin' 'bout Your Generation, Generation Y is generally the Butt-Monkey, but mainly Josh.
    Josh: "I never thought we had a problem, Shaun, but people keep telling me on Twitter that it's obvious you don't like me."
  • Alex in Taskmaster sometimes became the Butt-Monkey. Amongst other things, he has been made to eat several pies full of unusual fillings; dog food in another task; and for a blooper reel, had his face shoved into a cake before falling into a paddling pool full of water.
  • Teen Wolf:
    • Derek Hale. Shot, poisoned, apparently murdered, tortured, and beaten by way of setting the stakes and showing off the worst the baddies can offer. Nothing good happens to him. Even becoming an Alpha by Season One's end only makes his situation worse. Derek Hale can just can't have nice things.
    • Greenburg from the lacrosse team. He seems to be the bane of Coach Finstock's existence. Although between his status as The Ghost and the coach's... questionable mental state, it's not 100% certain that Greenburg really exists. And Word of God states he may not even exist.
  • Fez from That '70s Show, ever the effeminate, unlucky-with-the-ladies guy. Kelso also fills this role to some extent out of sheer stupidity.
  • AJ from That's So Weird is prone to mishaps from getting injured after a fall for being a human yo-yo to being infected with a syndrome.
  • In The Thick of It Glen Cullen is a pretty extreme example of this trope. He's regarded as an aging, irrelevant joke despite all his attempts to claim his 'experience' (read: age) has given him connections, sex-starved to the point where even his friends don't hesitate to point out "the last time you saw snatch was Basic Instinct" and scapegoated numerous times for the screw-ups of other people in the department. By the second series, it's become enough to give him a pitiable but quite hilarious mental breakdown.
    • In "Spinners And Losers", the less sympathetic Ollie Reeder becomes a Butt-Monkey, bullied left and right by Malcolm Tucker, sucking up to the various Smug Snakes, forced into embarrassing himself trying to rekindle a relationship he just broke off and then reduced to the status of cheese monitor while his ex-girlfriend and Arch-Enemy laugh at him.
  • The Tom Green Show had Glenn Humplik. To be Tom Green's butt monkey is not an enviable position.
  • John Melendez as portrayed in sketches on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.
    • Before that Branford Marsalis. Like in the Beyondo segment where Jay played a floating head that made predictions.
  • The Tony Randall Show had Mario Lanza (Zane Lasky). The Running Gag with the character was that Randall's character constantly insulted, belittled and hated him for no clear reason.
  • The presenters on Top Gear pass this around: Richard Hammond tends to suffer physical abuse and has become ever-so-slightly Woobiefied as a result; James May (aka "Captain Slow") has to deal with the ridicule of his co-presenters and their occasional (okay, frequent) attempts to sabotage his efforts; and Jeremy Clarkson seems completely unable to cope when he's out of his depth. However, since this so seldom happens, and since Clarkson is such a self-assured character most of the time, watching him suffer is highly entertaining.
  • Captain Jack Harkness of Torchwood, being unkillable, is repeatedly subjected to Fates Worse Than Death over the course of the show, especially in Children of Earth.
    • We see your Children of Earth and raise you one Miracle Day.
  • Corey and Trevor fulfil this role on Trailer Park Boys, constantly screwing up when they try to help the Boys commit their crimes, being tricked by the Boys into taking the fall when they're busted by the cops, and being insulted and humiliated despite their idolizing Ricky and Julian.
  • Kopelman on True Jackson. Mr. Madigan constantly kicks him out of meetings for no reason, and everyone in the show treats him like dirt. This is even funnier when you learn that the character is named after and played by the writer for the show.
  • Leo Johnson on Twin Peaks was interesting because he was a terrifying and menacing figure all through the first season, but after his injury in the finale, he became a butt-monkey for everyone from his wife and her boyfriend to Windom Earle in the second season. It just never stopped! Certainly it was warranted, given his status as an abusive Jerkass for the first bit of his existence, but after a while you couldn't help but notice it was getting silly.

  • The Vampire Diaries brings us multiple examples:
    • Jeremy Gilbert loses his parents, has a girlfriend who is openly jerkish to him die and is made to forget it, he has a teacher who dislikes him enough to keep a file on him, he meets a girl who has manipulating him for his family journal (She develops genuine feelings for him and then dies too), he is openly insulted, abused and even murdered by resident jerkass Damon (He got better), he is killed again at the end of the second season, and has to be sent away to avoid being murdered and is then betrayed and killed again by Katherine in Season four.
    • Caroline Forbes seems to be the go to girl for kidnappings, tortures, and general mistreatment.
    • Bonnie Bennett has a mother that abandoned her, loses her grandmother, nearly dies multiple times and seems to only be used when her friends need something from her before dying at the end of season four.
    • Matt Donovan has been abandoned by both parents, works a deadend job, fears being left behind when his friends leave for college, is often beaten up and insulted by other characters, has to put up endless bad luck and loses his best friend Jeremy in season four.
  • Van Kooten En De Bie: Mr. Foppe, a shy man who is always the target of De Vieze Man's pratical jokes. You automatically feel sorry for him, thus making him The Woobie too.
  • Logan Echolls from Veronica Mars. With all the crap that's happens to him before and during the events of the show, it's no wonder the dude's a Death Seeker.
  • Robbie from Victorious. every episode sees him either injured, insulted, or otherwise shown in an unfairly negative light. For example in "Helen Back Again," he buys Sinjin's bike and Helen promptly runs over it with her car, but only AFTER he pays for it.
    • Trina, Sinjin, sometimes Cat, and Tori to a certain extent. Lampshaded in "Tori Gets Stuck" where Jade complains about being cheated and humiliated. Sinjin tells her that it was something to get used to and Robbie nods in agreement.

  • Trivette from Walker, Texas Ranger. Next to frequently kidnapped district attorney Cahill, he's the most hapless character in the show, being the butt of every joke and the victim of every attack by redneck thugs.
    • It should, however, be noted that Trivette is also quite a Deadpan Snarker and said redneck thugs are usually very sorry afterwards.
  • In the second episode of the Walking with Monsters "documentary", the giant Mesothelae spider is something of a Butt Monkey. When it returns to its burrow after catching a lizard, the burrow is flooded. On its way to find another burrow, a giant dragonfly steals the dead lizard. It goes to get a drink, only to be scared off by a giant predatory amphibian. It finds a good number of other holes, but they're all occupied by other spiders. It gets chased off by a giant millipede. Finally, it finds a hole... which is struck by lightning once the spider's done building the web inside. The spider is roasted, and later eaten by another of the lizards.
    • And, in a meta example...the Mesothelae probably didn't even *exist*. It was based on Megarachne, which was found to be a eurypterid rather than a spider.
  • Claudia Donovan spent most of her first episode of Warehouse 13 pointing a gun at Artie's head, but later on became a tool for physical comic relief, usually through messing with an artifact, and was revealed to be socially inept. They toned that down in season 2 though, as she gained more skill at and respect for her job. She remains socially inept, but that's justified by her backstory.
  • Weeds
    • Celia Hodes. In the first season, she suffers from breast cancer; then in the second season she goes through a divorce (in order to pursue a relationship with Doug, only for him to go back to his wife); in the third she falls in love with a man who is double timing with her and her best friend (kind of) Nancy; then she gets jailed all thanks to her own family and friends in the fourth, and nearly gets shot by Nancy's employers once they discover her spying on them (Nancy saves her life by hitting her on the face with a gun, resulting in her losing a front tooth), and her eldest daughter tries to kidnap her and tries to cut her up and sell her body parts on the black market (only being unable to do so because her organs are tainted from her chemotherapy). Then she gets addicted to cocaine.
    • Celia's (ex)husband, Dean, is also a butt monkey, usually in a more slapstick fashion than Celia, and rarely without the high points Celia experiences between her bouts of bad luck. He even gets peed on by a wolf.
  • Whose Line Is It Anyway?: They had Colin, who was constantly being made fun of for being bald. And Canadian. And having strange shirts. note  He knew it, too, and even lampshaded it in an episode when Ryan and Drew's picking on each other went on a little too long.
    Colin: I'll be your lightning rod of hate!
    • One episode had a game where Colin ended up doing a handstand and not being able to get all the way up, with him saying that his battery pack got wedged up his ass, and Drew thought it was the funniest thing in the world for some reason, topping it off by saying "I don't know why I find it so funny whenever you get hurt."
  • Ziggy Sobotka from The Wire acts like a clown to entertain his coworkers and is usually put in bad situations for it. Later he gets a moment in the end of the second season which puts him in jail, probably for a very long time.
  • Wonder Woman: Harold Farnum spends most of his time being an annoyance that is only barely tolerated due to his father being a Senator. His one contribution was, while trapped in a locked cell, to make an arc pencil that would possibly free them in a few hundred years. Wonder Woman breaks the door open to save the audience from watching him grow old and die before escaping.
  • On the comedy panel show Would I Lie to You??, regular team captains David Mitchell and Lee Mack are often stereotyped as being extremely posh/weird, and really stupid, respectively. Most of the lies, as well as most of the truths, given to David are things to do with how "posh", or weird he is; such as the fact that as a kid he dressed as an 18th century nobleman, and that he used to have a bucket with a face painted on it as a friend. While most of the lies given to Lee are obviously made so ridiculous on purpose to make it impossible for Lee to look like anything but an idiot, such as the fact that he can smell if a dead fly is in the room, or that he can tell if someone prefers to drink tea or coffee by listening to their stomach.
    • Lee's well aware that he's always given the hardest lies. In one episode, he went into a rant after he failed to convince David's team that his story about placing a dot marker on a map of the UK for every service station he's ever visited was true.
      Lee: Can I just say, to the idiots who come up with the question: As if it's not hard enough that I place little stickers on a map because I filled up there and like to—You go, 'how can we make this harder. I know, we'll have 4 of them blue, one with an F and one with a bloody asterisk! How the hell am I supposed to do that?! Why don't you just stick one in the middle of Atlantic Ocean?!
      [Throws the folded map]

  • Joxer on Xena: Warrior Princess. Nearly every climactic scene involving "Joxer the Mighty" invariably has him getting knocked unconscious. No one hesitates to insult him, be it Xena, Gabrielle, Autolycus or even his murderous brother Jett. This is coupled with his affection for Gabrielle, who barely tolerates his existence. He's even reviled on fansites.
  • During the middle seasons of The X-Files, A.D. Skinner suffered a lot of abuse: being shot, framed for murdering a hooker, blackmailed, and poisoned with nanotechnology (this last was never really resolved). There was an episode where he has the crap kicked out of him by a woman. But some men would pay good money for that.
    • The woman in question was herself a one-episode Butt-Monkey. She was knocked down by a mugger and left with a prominent bruise on her face, then hypnotized into believing that her boss was responsible, so she pepper sprayed him and then kicked the crap out of him, only to be mortified by her actions when the hypnosis wore off.
  • X-Play's Roger: The Stan Lee Experience uses Bob Kane as this due to his hatred for him.

  • Zoey 101: Stacey Dillsen. Few characters have been as humiliated as poor, sweet Stacey, treated by characters and writers alike a highly kickable nerd. Even her parents dumped her, leaving her at Pacific Coast Academy over spring break without as much as a phone call rather than picking her up for vacation as anticipated. She generally was treated as less-than by even otherwise nice kids, for no good reason. The writers seemed to have it in for her. although they did ultimately let her enjoy some happiness.


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