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Agonizing Stomach Wound

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Charley didn't say anything but knew it was true. Stomach wounds were fatal. The surgeons could do nothing. The ambulance drivers would go through the wounded when and if they got to the field and jerk shirts up checking for stomach wounds. Those soldiers would be left. The surgeons were too busy with amputations and treatable injuries to spend time on those with stomach wounds. It was an agonizingly slow death it might take two days and the pain left men screaming until they were too hoarse to make another sound.
Soldier's Heart

Gunshot wounds in fictionland are a strange matter. Often, a shot to the head or chest is almost always immediately fatal. Shot in the shoulder or leg? Usually Just a Flesh Wound. Likewise, being Shot in the Ass is typically both non-lethal and Played for Laughs.

Then there's this trope.

A character who is shot or otherwise wounded in the stomach is in for a slow and agonizing death, especially if medical assistance is not available. More often than not, this is Truth in Television, especially in a pre-modern setting. The danger here comes from damage to internal organs with all the nastiness that comes with it. Rupture of the large intestine, for example, sends toxins into your bloodstream which can poison the rest of your system leading to organ failure and death. Unfortunately for the victim, this can mean hours or days of agonizing pain.

When inflicted intentionally, such wounds are typically only employed by villains to inflict a Cruel and Unusual Death or For the Evulz. Sometimes, an Anti-Hero of the Unscrupulous or Nominal variety may threaten to inflict one as a negotiating tactic or to ensure the villain suffers a suitable death. When the wound is accidental, this trope can be used to show that War Is Hell or that being wounded can be a Fate Worse than Death. Quite often, the victim of such a wound will beg to be put out of their misery rather than be left to die.

This trope tends to exist on the mundane extreme of the Sliding Scale of Realistic vs. Fantastic. When the trope is not played straight, a Torso with a View or Invisible Holes may result. As such, this trope is frequently seen in Westerns, War Movies, and other serious works wherein the Time-Delayed Death can be Played for Drama.

While this trope is similar to Gutted Like a Fish, that trope usually implies extreme bodily harm (i.e. internal organs spilling out) sufficient to cause immediate death. Being wounded in the stomach is the opposite of Instant Death Bullet, Off with His Head!, Half the Man He Used to Be, and Impaled with Extreme Prejudice, all of which result in a quick (although not necessarily painless) death.

As this is a Death Trope, unmarked spoilers aplenty are ahead. Beware.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In the first episode of Goblin Slayer, Rookie Mage gets overwhelmed by a pack of goblins and stabbed in the stomach with one of their daggers. She lets out a blood-curling scream as it happens, and Priestess is forced to flee as a result. When Goblin Slayer finds Rookie Mage, she's so badly hurt that all she can do is beg for a quick death instead of a slow one by a stomach wound. Goblin Slayer obliges.
  • In Golden Kamuy, Kiroranke's group are attacked by a Russian border patrol in Sakhalin who had been tipped off that a fugitive was trying to cross into Russian territory. Ogata shoots one of the border guards in the stomach, giving them an opportunity to escape. Vasily, the patrol's own sniper, deduces that he did this to slow them down; he could have easily gone for an immediately fatal shot, but by forcing his target to die a slow, agonizing death, the rest of the patrol would be inclined to stay back to try and help him rather than give chase.
  • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Sayaka is artificially subjected to the agonies of a stomach wound after she finds out the truth about Soul Gems and demands to know why Kyuubey does this to magical girls. It replies by asking how long she thinks she could last in battle if she was impaled with a spear and presses on her Soul Gem to subject her to the full sensation. Sayaka immediately falls to the floor, writhing in agony.
  • At one point in Street Fighter II V, Ryu is thrown in a Thai prison where he meets Sagat. The prison warden using whippings to keep the prisoners in line, and towards the end, threatens to the pair of fighters with a gun, contemplating aloud where he should shoot them, saying that being shot in the gut could take weeks to kill you.
  • Vinland Saga:
    • After an attack on London is repelled by Thorkell's forces, a short sequence shows the large numbers of wounded in the Danish camp. Anyone with a gut wound is offered a Mercy Kill since a gut wound in the early 11th century means certain and very painful death.
    • Bjorn, Askeladd's Number Two suffers a gut wound when trying to defend Prince Canute. Everyone knows this means certain death for him, but he manages to arrange to die in a proper warrior's duel before sepsis from the gut wound can kill him.

    Comic Books 
  • In Locke & Key: Clockworks, Mark Cho is stabbed in the stomach by Lucas "Dodge" Caravaggio after a valiant but failed attempt to save the day with the Crown of Shadows; the victim is clearly left in a lot of pain, and even more so when Dodge jams a toe into the open wound to torture him for information. Mark is then left there to slowly bleed to death, ultimately Dying Alone and in great pain before any of his friends can reach him.
  • Marshal Bass: This trope comes up very often:
  • The Punisher MAX:
    • This is how Nicky Cavella goes out after he makes the mistake of digging up Frank Castle's family and pissing on their remains. Castle was not happy about this asshole doing this, and did not want to make his end a quick one, leaving him in the wilderness to die of infection or blood loss after gut-shooting him. He's found about a week later, with birds having eaten the eyes from his corpse.
    • Later, Frank kills an Eastern European gangster by drugging him, cutting a hole in his stomach and draping his intestines around a tree. This was less about giving him a painful death, and more because said gangster was a veteran of the Yugoslav wars, and Frank had to pull out all the stops from the start to even have a chance of getting any information out of the guy, as the usual methods of Cold-Blooded Torture Frank normally uses on criminals would be like tickling him with a feather. It still only barely works, and the gangster calls Frank a coward the entire time.

    Fan Works 
  • Happens to a poor young Talon Company Red Shirt in Children of the Atom. He gets killed as an act of mercy by his much more experienced sergeant, who then elaborates on this trope to the other recruits.
  • In the Turning Red fanfic The Great Red Panda Rescue, Mei is kidnapped and gets her appendix removed resulting in a non-fatal version of this.
  • The protagonist of the story I Did Not Want to Die is a soldier that gets shot in the gut during a major battle and spends the rest of the story trying to endure an increasing level of agony and seeing his squadmates trying (futilely) to help him and get him to a safe place. At the end of the tale, he finally convinces them that he's a lost cause and spends his final couple of minutes shooting the enemy in a Last Stand to cover their retreat.
  • In Mass Effect: End of Days, a Batarian slave has his revenge upon his former master by giving him one of these and leaving him locked up.
  • Robb Returns: Balon Greyjoy takes an entire day to die from the stomach wound inflicted by Euron, with his screaming echoing through the castle on Pyke.
  • Snow Blind: A variant. Donatello gets stabbed in the side (the stabber was aiming for the stomach but Donnie's plastron deflected it), and it's treated like this, as he's bleeding heavily and is still in pain even after being stitched up and spending two days in bed.
  • In The Victors Project, about the past Victors of The Hunger Games, Brilliance, a District 1 Victor, is executed by the District 13 Kangaroo Court. His executioners "accidentally" shoot him in the gut, so that his death will be more painful, as punishment for not being contrite enough about his crimes.
  • Vow of Nudity: When Spectra gets stabbed in the stomach during a fight in the bandit hideout, she quickly falls unconscious and would have died had Mona not [[Transflormation turned her into a tree]] until their teammates could arrive to provide medical aid.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Casualties of War. The sadistic soldier Clark gives this to Oahn, a young vietnamese peasant girl, who was taken by the soldiers before as a sexual slave. He stabs her many times in her belly, but she survives and got a agonizing pain crying and in shock try to scape in vain. This is before the rest of the soldiers shot her and falls to her death.
  • Death Wish. The first mugger shot by Paul Kersey—just once in the stomach—thrashes on the ground in clear pain. Paul stares at his handiwork and then runs off, throwing up once he returns to his apartment. The experience doesn't stop him going out the next night looking for more criminals to avenge himself on.
  • In Full Metal Jacket, a Vietnamese sniper intentionally shoots an American soldier in the groin with the intention of drawing the other soldiers in the unit into the open as they try to prevent the wounded soldier from slowly dying.
  • The Hit List: The police report that after shooting Gates in the stomach, his killer allowed him to writhe around in agony on the floor for an hour before finishing him off.
  • Kate. In a flashback, Varrick tells Kate that a gut shot hurts more, and is a good way to tell the target It's Personal. Three guesses where they shoot each other in the end.
  • In The Shape of Water, Dr. Hoffstetler is shot in the stomach by Russian spies for his failure. Strickland, furious over being doublecrossed twice, manhandles Hoffstetler's wounds to get him to reveal who stole the asset.
    Strickland: Don’t lie. You don’t need to. Bullet went through your gut. Shit is mixing with your blood right now, poisoning it. Blood and shit. Can you imagine? You’re dead.
  • In Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, the villain shoots Indy's dad in the stomach specifically because he wanted him to die slowly, forcing Indy to recover the Holy Grail to save him.
  • Discussed Trope in Kiss of Death, where Tommy Udo the unhinged Giggling Villain says he likes to shoot his victims in the stomach, so they'll suffer.
  • In the movie Love And A 45, one of the viscous loan sharks takes a magnum shot to the gut, and slowly bleeds out in the backseat of a car while complaining about his guts falling out.
  • The character Chester in D.O.A. was likely intended as an imitation of Tommy Udo, and spends much of his scenes gloating of how he enjoys shooting into the belly.
  • As depicted in the page image, in Reservoir Dogs, Mr. Orange is slowly bleeding out from being gutshot by a woman he attempts to carjack, which is a running plot point.
  • Early in T2 Trainspotting, Francis Begbie plans to escape from prison by getting himself transferred to a civilian hospital; to this end, he has a fellow inmate superficially stab him in the belly. Unfortunately, the "hitman" gets a little bit carried away and skewers his client's liver, leaving Begbie (no stranger to pain) lying on the floor in a pool of blood, howling in agony. Only immediate medical attention saves his life.
  • This happens in The Princess Bride to Inigo Montoya near the end, through a thrown knife. He gets back up and kills the man who murdered his father anyway. The story ends without elaborating on his fate, but as the setting is pre-antibiotics, he would probably be dead of infection inside a week.
  • In The Jackal, Major Koslova is shot in the liver when she runs into the eponymous villain. He proceeds to gleefully describe to her the agony she's about to suffer before her inevitable death, only so she can pass on another gloating message to the surviving protagonists.
  • In Harry Brown, the titular vigilante gut-shots a drug dealer, then spends the man's last few minutes explaining it to him.
    Harry Brown: I don't reckon you've got long. Seen that before. Gut wound. The slug's probably torn right through your liver. Mate of mine in Ulster got caught in sniper fire. Bullet blew his insides out. He screamed for a good 10 minutes. We couldn't send a medic in; the section was too hot. So we all took cover... and watched him die. I've never told that... to anyone... You should've called an ambulance for the girl...
  • Count Yorga: When the titular character end up impaling himself on a stake while trying to choke the last surviving hunter after him. His death is very drawn out in which he reels back, before yelling in agony with a lot of schizophrenic jump cut as he writhes in pain and falls to the floor before finally expiring.
  • Left for Dead: Big Bad Mobius Lockhart likes to inflict stomach wounds on his victims because they are painful and the victims take a long time to die. After he gut shoots a Bounty Hunter, he tells Blake that it will take at least two days for the man to die. (Clem later performs a Mercy Kill on him.)
  • In The Sixth Sense, Malcolm Crowe is shot by an ex patient in the stomach, and is in agonizing pain, but manages to survive. During the Once More, with Clarity segment, his wife, Anna, can tell by the wound that he won't survive, and his shirt is permanently stained with blood as a ghost.
  • In 1917, Blake gets stabbed by a German pilot he'd rescued from a burning plane. Despite Schofield's attempts to get him back on his feet, every small movement makes him scream or groan in agony and he continuously falls back over. In the end, there's nothing that can be done to save him, and he dies slowly and painfully while Schofield stays by his side to make him feel better.
  • Jumper: The Paladins stab captured Jumpers in the gut and leave them to die.
  • Discussed in Back to the Future Part III when Buford "Mad Dog" Tannen pulls a derringer on Doc Brown and crows that the last guy he used it on bled to death over the course of two days. In the original timeline before Marty interfered, such a fate befell Doc (they operated under the assumption that Buford would shoot him on September 7th, turns out Doc got shot on September 5th and took two days to die).
  • Referenced in White House Down where Walker threatens to have Emily Cale shot in the stomach if her father John does not surrender.
  • Jagged Mind: After dropping her guard near a seemingly subdued Billie, Alex is stabbed in the stomach by the broken end of the wine bottle she hit Billie with. It's unknown whether the wound would have been fatal, as Billie successfully resets time with the crystal before Alex can bleed out.

  • Able Team. In "Amazon Slaughter", the former-Khmer Rouge bodyguards of the Big Bad crucify a mercenary pilot after he mistakenly bombs his own side. Their commander decides he's dying too quickly, so has one of his men gut the pilot to increase his suffering.
  • The Da Vinci Code begins with one of these: Silas opts to shoot Jacques Sauniere in the gut and leave him to it, trusting that being trapped behind Louvre's active security gates will make it impossible for Sauniere to reveal anything to anyone before he dies. However, Sauniere is able to get around this through inventive use of his own blood.
  • In the second Deathworld book, Jason gets a sword stab in the belly while stranded on a primitive planet. Luckily, his beloved hears his emergency signal in time, because the technological level of the locals makes the wound completely untreatable.
  • In the Deryni novel King Javan's Year, evil lord Murdoch of Carthane takes a serious belly wound during his Duel to the Death with the vengeful Duke Hrorik Claibourne. Everyone knows that the wound is mortal; even a Deryni Healer can't save him. Knowing the kind of death he faces, Murdoch asks for the coup de grâce, and his friend Rhun obliges.
  • Mentioned in the Horrible Histories book The Vicious Vikings. If a warrior was wounded, his comrades would feed him an onion porridge, and then sniff the wound; if the wound smelt of onions, it meant his guts had been pierced and there was nothing they could do except pray to Odin for a swift journey to Valhalla.
  • In the first Mike Hammer novel I, the Jury, Mike deliberately shoots the female murderer (who killed a friend of his) in the stomach to make her die as painfully as possible, something that was seen at the time as a shocking and reprehensible new frontier in Anti-Hero behaviour.
  • In The Long Walk, the soldiers shoot Olson multiple times in the stomach rather than the head when he tries to attack them in order to make his death extra agonizing, as well as to discourage the other Walkers from getting similar ideas of approaching them. His wounds are so severe his intestines fall out of his body.
  • Invoked in the Modesty Blaise novel I, Lucifer. Modesty and her sidekick Willie are forced by the villains to have an Involuntary Battle to the Death, and Modesty apparently shoots him in the stomach. He reacts with horror at the lingering death facing him, and she tearfully says she couldn't afford not to aim for his center of body mass, and then he staggers to the nearby cliff edge and throws himself off, seeking a quicker death. Actually, the whole thing is an act to give Willie an excuse to escape over the cliff, which he knew something the villains didn't about his chances of surviving.
  • In Patriot Games, terrorist Sean Miller has a grudge against Sgt. Highland, so he makes a point of shooting Highland in the gut and leaving to die in slow agony instead of killing him outright. Ironically, this means Highland survives long enough for medical help to arrive and save his life.
  • In Rainbow Six, Homer Johnston delivers a deliberately fatal and painful gutshot (to the liver, specifically) to a terrorist who had previously murdered a cancer-ridden little girl.
    Homer: Die slow, you fuck.
  • In Sarny, Sarny mentions how soldiers during the American Civil War left soldiers (many only teenagers) to die if they were wounded in the stomach. It often took a day or more for the soldiers to die.
  • In Passage, the third book of The Sharing Knife, one character is knifed in the stomach during a fight with river bandits, leaving him in agony. Unusually for this trope, he survives, though not without a nasty battle with infection.
  • Professor Moriarty Series: Michael the Peg takes about twenty minutes to die from a pistol shot to the stomach, and spends most of that time begging and raving as Moriarty coldly watches him die and refuses to let any of his men give Michael a Mercy Kill.
  • The Scholomance: An Evil Sorcerer ambushes El in her dorm and stabs her in the gut, intending to drain her life while she's incapacitated. She gets rescued and is fixed with healing magic, but the pain and damage leave her defenseless for a while.
  • The protagonist in Gary Paulsen's Civil War novella Soldiers Heart comes across a soldier dying from a stomach wound. Since the field surgeons won't even attempt to treat the wound, the soldier begs the protagonist for a loaded rifle to end his suffering.
  • In A Song of Ice and Fire, King Robert Baratheon ends his reign by getting gored in the stomach and ripped open by a boar during a drunken hunting trip; he's left in so much pain that he can barely issue his final orders. Needless to say, he's mercifully anesthetized once he's finished, and remains unconscious until he finally expires the next day.
    • Gregor Clegane suffers a similar one, impaled through the stomach by Oberyn Martell's spear. Unfortunately for him, his freakish durability keeps him alive for weeks as the Maesters unsuccessfully try to treat it; unable to even take painkillers due to his tolerance for them.
  • Station Eleven: The Prophet shoots a woman in the stomach "just to cause her pain" after she refuses to become the wife of one of his followers. In a post-apocalyptic world without antibiotics, such a wound is potentially fatal.
  • It's brought up a couple of times in Tortall Universe that a gut wound is almost always a death sentence, even with healing:
    • Protector of the Small: when Kel fights a centaur and wounds him in his human torso. The smell alerts her that she's pierced his intestines, so she immediately cuts his throat as a Mercy Kill.
    • Trickster's Duet: Duke Mequen is run through the stomach in Trickster's Choice; despite immediate attention from a healer, he's dead within the next few pages.
  • Warrior Cats has a slight variant. When Scourge slices Tigerstar up the belly, the wound is deep enough to make him die nine-times over, in slow, agonizing pain.
  • The Wise Man's Fear: After Kvothe fights a group of bandits/kidnappers, one survives but has a horrible stomach wound. Kvothe specifically invokes this trope, and gives him a water bottle so that his death will last longer. Kvothe still considers it the cruelest thing he's ever done.
  • Elend receives one of these from the Mist Spirit at the climax of Well of Ascension, to tempt Vin into using the titular Well's power to heal him instead of freeing it to save the world. After agonizing moments, she chooses to save the world. Too bad freeing the power only frees the Sealed Evil in a Can. Elend is saved by a different means of healing. Mistborn: Secret History elaborates on this, revealing that the gut wound was invoked by the deceased Kelsier. As he explains to the real Mist Spirit, it's lethal enough for Vin to need the Well, but he'll live long enough for her to think over the decision.
  • In Kathleen and Michael Gear's People of the Masks, Blue Raven gets gutshot with a barbed arrow. He knows he's doomed, and is essentially resigned to a slow and painful death (and potentially being tortured for information in his final hours by the bad guys). That doesn't happen; he gets ahold of an obsidian shard and makes it quick.
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events: In the final book of the series, this is how Count Olaf finally buys it. Couldn't have happened to a nicer guy. For further karma points, he gets stabbed through the gut immediately after ingesting antidote for the Fungoid Mycelium, the deadliest mushroom in the world.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Discussed in 1000 Ways to Die when a man is put on an unsecured gurney by negligent EMT workers, rolls down a hill, and is impaled on a sign. The doctor notes that stomach wounds actually kill quickly, as there is a large artery parallel to the spine. This of course ignores the fact that the aforementioned artery might not get slashed if the wound is caused by something much smaller than the sign.
  • In the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. episode "T.R.A.C.K.S.", Quinn shoots Skye in the stomach, not so that she will bleed out slowly and die, but so that Coulson and his team will have the incentive to find a cure for her using the same means that brought Coulson back to life.
  • In Criminal Minds, one female unsub within a gang of bank robbers is seen shooting her victims in the gut and relishing in their agony. She even berates one of her colleagues about his own tendency to go for the headshot.
  • CSI: NY: In "Communication Breakdown", a (fictional tribe) Native American perpetrator kills his victim (a member of the same tribe) by slipping a small weapon designed for killing wolves into an oyster on the man's room service tray. The barbed object is folded and secured with a tie that dissolves in stomach acid. When the tie is gone, the object opens up and causes severe damage to the intestines. The man dies of sepsis a few days later.
  • In the second season of The Expanse, Drummer is shot in the gut when an extremist OPA faction attempts to seize control of Tycho station. As if that wasn't bad enough, the leader of the attempted coup later deliberately puts pressure on her midsection to torture her, which makes her scream in agony. She later pays him back with a summary execution via a bullet to the brain.
  • Farscape:
    • In the episode "A Bug's Life", Aeryn is stabbed in the belly by the possessed Captain Larraq. Following a brief Hope Spot in the following episode, during which she pretends to be well enough for her usual workout, she's found to be suffering from chronic organ failure; though Aeryn asks permission to kill herself rather than suffer through the remaining fifty hours of her life, Crichton instead opts to infiltrate a top-secret Peacekeeper base in order to retrieve the peripheral tissue graft she needs in order to survive.
    • In "The Hidden Memory", Gilina is shot in the stomach by Scorpius while helping Crichton escape from the aforementioned base. This time, the wounds are far more devastating: she dies in agony over the course of the next few hours, and Stark is only able to ease her passing by giving her some of his Care-Bear Stare.
  • In Firefly :
    • "Serenity", Kaylee gets shot in the stomach, forcing the crew to afford newcomer Simon enough trust to perform surgery on her as he's the only doctor for millions of miles.
    • Mal gets one in “Out of Gas”. He shoots up with an adrenaline Shot to the Heart and drags himself to the engine room, where he gets the needed engine part replaced. But once the ship is powered up, he passes out trying to drag himself to the bridge to press the button to recall the shuttles. He wakes up in the infirmary with Simon treating him and Wash giving him a direct blood transfusion.
  • In Forever (2014) this is how Adam says he died the first time, having been stabbed in the belly with a pugio while trying to stop the assassination of Julius Caesar.
  • One murderer in Foyle's War gave his victim a Sadistic Choice between either swallowing a cyanide pill or being shot in each limb and the stomach to die a drawn-out and agonizing death.
  • In iZombie, Don E. is treated to such a gutshot when some henchmen from a rival crime lord arrive at the funeral home looking for Blaine, fortunately Don E. just happens to be a zombie and is only minorly inconvenienced by the whole thing.
  • In Mr. Robot, both Elliot and Tyrell were shot in the stomach. But while Elliot survived despite being waited for a few hours before surgery, Tyrell possibly slowly passed away as he did The Dying Walk in the woods.
  • One of the Shelby brothers in Peaky Blinders, when threatened with a gun, asks the assailant to please aim for his head because he has seen what abdomen wounds do to people. For context, he is (like all older Shelbys) a Shell-Shocked Veteran of World War I.
  • The Sopranos: In the first episode of Season 6, Uncle Junior shoots his nephew Tony in a dementia-addled haze, mistaking Tony for a long-dead rival, nailing him in the gut. Junior panics and hides in a closet, forcing Tony, in immense pain, to slowly crawl to a phone and dial 9-1-1 before he bleeds out. He spends the next few episodes in a medically-induced coma, on the brink of death.
  • In Squid Game, Sae-Byeok is struck in the belly by a shard of glass in the aftermath of the fifth game; with the guards uninterested in helping, she's forced to remove it herself and bandage the wound as best as she can, clearly in great pain throughout. However, it's clearly not enough to save her: she's barely able to eat during the climactic steak dinner, begins bleeding profusely during the night, and only manages to hide her worsening condition from the other players due to being an expert Emotionless Girl. When Gi-hun notices her bleeding and tries to call for help, the guards show up with a coffin.
  • Supernatural: Season 5's "Abandon All Hope" sees Jo Harvelle get attacked by hellhounds that tear apart her stomach. Knowing she won't survive, Jo offers to make a Heroic Sacrifice and detonate an improvised bomb. Her mother Ellen decides to stay with her, and Jo dies in Ellen's arms and Ellen detonates the bomb, dying in the process.
  • The titular Wednesday Addams gets stabbed in the stomach by Marilyn/Laurel in Wednesday during the last episode. She's dying slowly, and visibly in a lot of pain, by the time Goody Addams saves her.

  • Black Jack Justice: The episode "A Simple Case of Black and White" sees Jack and Trixie's client, Jim White, shot dead from a gunshot to the stomach. Multiple characters, some of them WWII veterans with experience with such wounds, comment on what kind of death that had to be. White hired the detectives to find the woman and child he ran out on. At first, it seems like White's murderer was his ex's current husband, Donald Black, as the gun used to shoot him was registered in Black's name. Then it comes out the gun went missing over a year ago. Jack and Trixie eventually determine that White stole the gun and shot himself with it, intending to frame Black for his death for taking his family from him. They further realize that White deliberately shot himself in the stomach precisely because it would be a long and painful death. He used the time he was dying to flush the evidence it was Suicide, Not Murder down the toilet.
  • Wolf 359: In the last episode "Brave New World", during the final confrontation Lieutenant Rene Minkowski gets shot through the stomach, with Marcus Cutter mockingly pointing out how agonising that is. The wound eventually causes her to lose consciousness due to blood loss, right as everyone else is disabled and the station is falling into the star. Thankfully Jacobi rescues them all.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer: One of the main reasons Ogres use gutplates is because gutshots tend to be especially agonizing for them if they're enough to be lethal. Disembowelment is the worst; it's inevitably lethal and incapacitating because there's so much intestine involved, but it takes days for the ogre to die, screaming the whole time. Ogres naturally find this to be one of the few horrifying things out there (on par with Crippling Castration for humans), and any ogre that actively goes for gutshots to be someone to fear and hate.

  • In Hedda Gabler, Hedda tries to drive Lovborg to suicide by giving him a pistol and telling him to "make it beautiful". Instead, the gun accidentally discharges while Lovborg is in a brothel, striking him in the bowels and causing a slow, Undignified Death.

    Video Games 
  • Like a Dragon:
    • Yakuza: Like a Dragon; Tendo shoots Arakawa in the gut when he double crosses him, making sure he has a long, drawn out death so Tendo can smugly gloat over Arakawa in his final moments.
    • Like a Dragon: Ishin!; Takeda shoots Todo in the stomach when he spots the latter plotting against the faction they are both a part of. While time isn't really consistent in the Like A Dragon games, it still takes Todo a long time to bleed out from his injury, long enough for Ryoma to track down and kill Takeda in retribution.
    • Downplayed in Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name. Just before Watase goes to Omi HQ to read the declaration of dissolution for the Tojo Clan and Omi Alliance, he takes a knife to the gut courtesy of Nishitani. He lives, but Watase says it's the worst pain he's ever felt, hence why he didn't fight to defend himself after reading the declaration in Y:LaD.
  • In Persona 2, Maya dies from this, at least in Innocent Sin. In Eternal Punishment, she gets a stomach pain and wound from running into Tatsuya in the real world; and thus part of the events of the game is to prevent the new timeline from becoming the old timeline, which if it happens, kills Maya all over again as the wound and pain from her chest is actually from the spear that pierced Christ in Innocent Sin.
  • In The Secret World, Illuminati handler Kirsten Geary can be heard speaking to one of her agents over the phone in one scene: apparently, the guy's just been shot in the stomach and is in agony, while Geary is admonishing him for crying, irritably reassuring him that he won't die for several hours. As she puts it, "it's a total drag".
  • At the start of Space Quest I: The Sarien Encounter, the Sariens have slaughtered almost everyone on the starlab Arcada by laser blast to the stomach, and one of the head scientists only lasts long enough to give Roger Wilco a clue to a data cartridge, before he too succumbs to this trope. For bonus points, the VGA remake allows Roger to smell and taste these corpses if the player desires.

  • Niels: Niels shoots 250 in the stomach at point-blank range as a means of claiming 300 for himself. Luckily, Niels is just dumb enough to do this in front of 300 and after 300's Roaring Rampage of Revenge, he gets 250 to the hospital. Since it's a modern setting, 250 survives, but the fallout from the injury is fairly realistic: he has surgery, has to stay in the hospital for several days, spends weeks on a liquid diet, and now has a massive scar where his belly button used to be.
  • Unsounded: The sociopathic Hate Sink Starfish stabs a woman in the gut and leaves her to die just for getting in his way. The next day, the Anti-Villain Bastion helps her out with some medical and magical treatment.

    Web Videos 
  • The Cry of Mann: This happens twice to Jouglat.
    • The first time is a war flashback of his Near-Death Experience, in which he not only had a major stomach wound, but a wound so bad the medics had to stuff his organs back into his chest as he was only barely staying alive with the help of his callers, and was left a bloody, bandaged mess.
    • The second time, Frank stabbed him in the gut, and he bled out. Though the death was implied to be instantaneous, the wound was so bad he didn't move even after "waking up" again; he just laid with Ghost Lady, eating and talking to callers, too shocked and agonized to do anything else.
    • At the end of Call Of Warr, Prince manages to be knocked over...onto his knife. He spends the rest of the scene flailing around and screaming in agony with his blade sticking out of his stomach. Gravesite's attempt to help is only met by shrieks and Prince's constant collapsing.
  • Dinosauria; in the short "Old Buck", the titular Styracosaurus flips his younger opponent before running him through on his horn. Fortunately the younger Styracosaurus doesn't suffer long, for a trio of Daspletosaurus that had been watching the fight move in to finish him off shortly after.

    Western Animation 
  • Amphibia: Played With. In the penultimate episode "All In" King Andrias not only loses his left arm and leg, and the tip of his tail. He also gets a massive hole in the left side of his belly when Anne rammed throught him, after he left himself open to defeat, and in the process exposing his cybernetic insides. Although he survives the blow witout any lasting pain, the damage to his body does take its toll on him as the gap in his stomach is still there, and it caused him to lose his eyesight by the 9 month timeskip in Amphibia because he refused to get it repaired. Matt Braly later confirmed that his injuries left his days numbered.
  • Archer: Strangely averted in the season 7 finale, after Archer is shot in the stomach by Veronica Deane. He's clutching his bleeding gut wound, but only seems to be in moderate pain, and can otherwise move and talk just fine. This is because he's actually one of Krieger's robot copies that Archer activated to help him earlier in the episode, and the REAL Archer is the man currently bleeding out face down in the pool. The injury and resulting brain damage leaves him in a coma for three years.


Video Example(s):


Nightmare Pt. 1

A crew, captured by aliens, is brutally interrogated, until finally, one of them snaps, believing another one is a traitor and stabs him in the stomach. Its then that something shocking is revealed.

How well does it match the trope?

4.8 (5 votes)

Example of:

Main / CruelTwistEnding

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