When there's a character that needs to be taught a lesson, sometimes another character doesn't wait for karma to take its toll. The Aesop Enforcer purposefully and forcefully inflicts some sort of change in order for the subject to learn An Aesop, usually sticking around to watch the subject's behavior or even inform them of their progress towards redemption.
Common examples include a Beauty being turned into a Beast because they refuse to see inner beauty; The Protagonist is approaching an event horizon, when they get a Wonderful Plot to show why they need to stay the way they are; A Jerkass gets a Karmic Transformation, becoming what they hate, or a Baleful Polymorph that puts them at the mercy of their victims. When there's someone behind it all, ensuring that the subject learns their lesson, or suffers for their hubris, then you have an Aesop Enforcer.
In straight examples, the Enforcer will be supernatural in some way. Mundane Aesop Enforcers run the risk of having their plan backfire, possibly getting An Aesop of their own once the subject realizes they're being manipulated, or takes their lesson to the extreme. When an Aesop Enforcer's lesson also affects those who had nothing to do with the character's wrongdoing (usually by making them suffer in order to teach the lesson) then we have a case of Aesop Collateral Damage.
- New Mutants had Emma Frost and Dani Moonstar team up to show Prodigy a possible future where the mental blocks on his powers are removed, allowing him to keep all the knowledge his powers absorb from others. He becomes a genocidal dictator, creating a utopia at the cost of thousands of lives, including all the X-Men. After seeing this telepathic illusion, Prodigy decides to keep his mental blocks in place. Considering that neither Dani nor Emma have any ability to predict the future, one has to wonder where the hell they were pulling this Wonderful Plot from.
- After M-Day, Prodigy lost his powers entirely, but the Stepford Cuckoos were able to unlock all the knowledge he had forgotten. He has yet to pursue global domination, further discrediting Emma and Dani trying to enforce Ignorance Is Bliss. note
- Brother Bear. Sitka, the main character Kenai's brother. Kenai gets Sitka killed due to his obsessive bear hunting, causing Kenai to hunt down the same bear again to kill it in vengeance. Sitka's spirit appears in the form of an eagle, and transforms Kenai into a bear as punishment. Once Kenai has learned his lesson, Sitka appears again to change him back. Kenai insists on staying a bear to protect Koda, the son of the bear he killed.
- The Witch in Brave is this to both Merida and Mor'du. The transformation is flipped with Merida, transforming her family members instead of her, while Mor'du was played straight. Considering how Mor'du's story wound up (murdering his family, most of his kingdom, and allegedly dozens of others), she either thought that granting Merida's request would release Mor'du and end well for her, or just didn't care.
- It's a Wonderful Life. Clarence the Guardian Angel grants George Bailey's unintentional wish, showing him an Alternate Universe in which George never been born. After seeing tragedy after tragedy due to him not being alive, George recants his wish, wanting to live. He is returned to his own world, filled with a renewed vigor for life.
- Morozko. Father Mushroom inflicts Ivan with the appearance of a Werebear when Ivan refuses to bow out of respect. Ivan assumes that all he has to do is a good deed to restore himself, but a watchful Father Mushroom waits until he shows true selflessness to change him back.
- The Mr. Men books has enforcers appear in titles involving the negative trait characters. Some of them are fantastic beings like the giant in Mr. Greedy and the goblin in Mr. Uppity. Others are mundane; Mr. Nosy is dealt with by the townspeople while Mr. Happy has Mr. Tickle tickle Mr. Grumpy any time he acts mean to anyone. Of course, later books have some of these characters reverting back to their old traits.
- M*A*S*H had an early episode with a racist soldier who tells them to make sure he gets "the right color blood". To teach him a lesson, Trapper darkens his skin and Ginger (the resident black nurse then) comes on to him. To drive the Aesop home, Hawkeye tells him about the doctor who invented the process for storing blood, and died after a car accident because he was black and the hospital was "whites only". The soldier learned his lesson.
- One Hundred Deeds For Eddie Mcdowd. The Drifter. The titular Eddie McDowd is a Bully and a Jerkass about to pass the Moral Event Horizon whom the Drifter turns into a dog. The Drifter explains that Eddie must perform 100 good deeds in order to be changed back into a human. In the meantime, only one person can understand him — the last boy he bullied. On top of this, Eddie's entire family vanishes from the face of the earth until he can complete his deeds. At the end of most episodes, the Drifter appears to inform Eddie that he's accomplished a good deed and how many he has remaining.
- Sabrina the Teenage Witch constantly found herself victim to one of these, usually her aunts Hilda and Zelda. Some of them bordered on Scare 'Em Straight or outright Mind Rape, usually for the sake of mundane and petty lessons. They've occasionally become this trope for mortals as well.
- In the The Saint episode "The Golden Journey", Simon Templar encounters his friend's beautiful, rich, and very spoilt fiancee Belinda. He sets her up for a life-changing lesson by stealing her money and possessions, leaving her no choice but to undertake a long journey with him on foot. After encountering many hardships on the way, she learns that there are more important things than money, and becomes much more pleasant.
- In the episode "Showdown with Rance McGrew" of The Twilight Zone (1959), the title character, an arrogant primadonna, meets up with Jesse James; James threatens McGrew to the point that McGrew shows his true colors as a Dirty Coward. Unlike other examples of this trope though, James doesn't go away after McGrew learns his lesson; he becomes The Kid with the Leash by returning as McGrew's new agent to make sure he behaves himself.
- The Guest Book features "Rock Bottom Enterprises", who manufacture situations wherein drug addicts realize they've hit rock bottom and need to go to rehab. It does backfire, as one of them eventually becomes addicted to drugs herself and eventually kills a target. Or not. Turns out the target was also an enforcer, who faked her death, at the woman's husband's request, to get the woman to go to rehab.
- Invoked by George Bluth in Arrested Development, who throughout his kids' childhood frequently hired a one-armed man to pretend to get horribly injured in elaborate scenarios designed to teach them trivial lessons ("And THAT'S why we don't eat ice cream in the car!"). As an adult, his son Michael attempts to invoke the trope himself to teach his own son a lesson, only for things to go horribly wrong when the one-armed man shows up to deliver a lesson from George about not teaching lessons via ridiculous scenarios.
- Stokely Hathaway pestered Ring of Honor matchmaker Nigel McGuinness to give Moose a continuous string of the toughest opponents possible, ones he knew Moose wouldn't be able to beat, with Mr. Wrestling III chastising Hathaway at times for not giving Moose enough coaching during the resulting matches. This all ended up being done to teach Moose (and the fans) that winning and losing are not the only things that matter. Experience, and respect, can be gained more quickly if you aren't afraid of losing.
- The Magic Man from Adventure Time is a parody of this type, in that the Aesop is usually just an excuse and he just loves screwing around with people. In his first appearance, he turns Finn and other characters into body parts until they learned their lesson, and although they learn about working together, the real lesson was to realize what a big Jerkass Magic Man is. He plays it a bit more straight in the episode "Food Chain", where he transforms Finn and Jake into birds, plants, and caterpillars so that Finn would learn about the importance of the food chain.
- In the Fairly OddParents episode "The Boy Who Would Be Queen", Timmy makes a disparaging remark about never wishing to be a girl, which Wanda creatively interprets as exactly that. Timmy decides he can use this to his advantage, but wishes for Cosmo and Wanda to switch genders. They have no choice but to grant his wish, making Timmy the Enforcer after Wanda's attempt to force one on him.
- The mystical island of Avalon. Anyone who tries to leave is never sent where they want to go, but where they need to be.
- Queen Titania in the non-canon third season, showing Goliath a world in which he's a human, not a gargoyle. He is married and has children with Elisa Maza, who is a staunch gargoyle hater. Goliath tries to find his old clan to figure out what's happening, only for them all to be killed before the deception is revealed. At least it was done for a better reason than Puck.
- My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic
- The infamous episode "The Mysterious Mare Do Well" deals with this. When Rainbow Dash starts acting a bit too arrogant about saving the day, the title character shows up and starts to outdo her at every turn. It turns out that the Mare Do Well is the other five ponies, who concocted this scheme to teach Rainbow Dash a lesson about humility. Whether this plan was justified or too cruel remains the subject of debate.
- Also Played With in the episode "Lesson Zero". Realizing she hasn't got her usual Aesop to give to Princess Celestia for her weekly report, Twilight Sparkle goes insane fearing repercussions. She then goes around looking for any dilemmas between other ponies (and later trying to cause it) in order to enforce An Aesop for her report. Naturally, the chaos she causes only leads to one concerning her work zeal.
- "Green Isn't Your Color" features Twilight Sparkle learning about keeping secrets her friends entrust to her. Enforcing this aesop is Pinkie Pie, who asserts that losing a friend's trust is the fastest way to lose a friend (FOREVER!!). Pinkie appears in increasingly odd places throughout the episode, stopping Twilight from spilling the beans.
- South Park. Cartman starts a crusade against gingers, causing the other boys to use makeup and hair dye on him in his sleep to convince him he's become a ginger. The plan backfires when Cartman starts a "ginger power" movement due to him refusing to live as a minority, and nearly has the other boys publicly executed for not being ginger. Until Kyle quietly confesses to him that he's not really ginger, leaving him aghast in front of a mob of children he's riled into hating non-gingers.
- Tiny Toon Adventures. In one short, Shirley the Loon gives Dizzy Devil a Karmic Transformation into a bug to force him to realize the value of animal life. It doesn't last.
- Freakazoid!. One episode had a mini-segment, "Fatman & Boy Blubber," in which an overweight boy named Louis almost has his lunch stolen by bullies, but the titular overweight superheroes rescue him and express how kids like Louis have every right to have their lunch. However, Fatman then discovers that Louie has a delicious sweetbun in his lunch, and end up trying to steal it himself.