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Agony of the Feet

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Now that's creative.

"Enemy: I hope you die. Me: I hope you step on a Lego in the dark. Enemy: *gasps* take that back!"

Primarily an Animation Trope, but has been known to turn up in other places, Agony of the Feet is a trope particular to Amusing Injuries.

A character is minding his own business and someone (or himself) drops something heavy on his foot, or he's angry about something and kicks the source of his frustration a little too hard. Or she's angered a cute kid and the kid kicks her (in the shins/stomps on her foot). Or there's a misstep, resulting in a stubbed toe... Or you stepped on Caltrops or something else sharp on the get the idea. A common live-action variant is a character buying shoes too small for their feet, either through foolish pride of refusing to admit that they have large feet or being too cheap to buy full price, insisting that their low-price leather shoes will extend with wear.


Whatever the situation, the result is the same. The character in question ends up hopping on one foot while clutching the other one, shouting in Angrish for a few seconds to indicate their pain.

Variants can occur with other body parts, but some part of the foot or leg is most common. This is likely because the foot is considered one of the body's more vulnerable areas, and while foot injuries can be extremely painful, they're hardly ever life threatening. For situations in which the knee itself is injured, see Knee-capping.

Can occur before, while, after, directly as a cause for, or as a result of Losing a Shoe in the Struggle.

Not to be confused with the agony of defeat or "Agony of Defeet."


Example subpages

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    Comic Strips 
  • Calvin and Hobbes has a strip where the title characters hear a crashing noise on Christmas Eve and assume it's Santa. They listen to see if they can hear what he's saying. Cut to the living room:
    Calvin's Dad: (stands on one leg, clutching his foot after dropping a heavy present on it) Slippin'-rippin'-dang-fang-rotten-zarg-barg-a-ding-dong!
    Calvin's Mom: Quiet dear! Calvin will hear you!
  • Mickey Mouse: In a scene from "Mickey Mouse in Death Valley" (that was written by Walt Disney himself), Peg-Leg Pete tries to attack Mickey from behind with an axe. However, a mysterious figure known as "The Fox" lops off the blade with scissors, causing Pete to instead hit himself on the toe with the handle.
  • The "too-small shoes" variant is used in a Herman strip, showing a man with his feet in a bucket of water being told "I told you not to buy size ten!" by his wife.

    Fan Works 

  • In GrailQuest 4: Voyage of Terror, when Pip is given the option to pick a lock or kicking the door open, kicking is a bad choice:
    That hasn't done your foot any good. Didn't you remember you were only wearing light little sandals? Deduct 3 from your current LIFE POINTS and limp a little.

  • The subject of a back-page gag in an issue of MAD. A man buys magnetic insoles for his shoes, but they end up being so powerful that they pull an entire drawer full of sharp knives down, causing every knife to impale itself through his feet. Followed immediately by the fridge crashing down on him.

  • Although it can't be seen in the finished video, the behind-the-scenes for Lindsey Stirling's "Elements" shows it was rather painful to make; she wore thin sandals in a forest full of prickly plants, and had to dance and spin barefoot on a salt flat.
  • Train's music video for "50 Ways to Say Goodbye" sees this happen to Taryn Manning. After stepping on a pin, she clutches her foot and hops in pain, causing her to trip and falls down some stairs.
  • Seen in the Reagan / Chernyenko bout in Frankie Goes to Hollywood's "Two Tribes."
  • Duran Duran:
    • In the music video for "Rio", a crab claws Roger Taylor's foot, causing him to hop in pain, and embarrass himself in front of the titular woman.
    • The "Save a Prayer" video provided a real life example, regarding the shot of Duran Duran standing barefoot in front of a Buddha statue. Forbidden from wearing shoes while at the shrine, the members burned their feet on the hot stone ground, though they managed to hide their pain in the vid.
  • In the last verse of Jimmy Buffet's "Margaritaville", the singer steps on a discarded pop-top pull tab, having previously damaged and discarded his flip-flop footwear. His heel is cut, and he returns home to drink more margaritas.

  • White Water has the Bigfoot Hot Foot, where a lit match between Bigfoot's toes is used to distract him, allowing the player to sneak into his cave.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • In February 1995, there was a battle royal on WWF TV. During the match, Jerry Lawler went over the top rope and landed on one foot (the rule is a wrestler has to go over the top rope and have both feet touch the ground to be eliminated). Lawler hopped around ringside on one foot avoiding the other wrestlers until Bret Hart came down to ringside and stomped on Lawler's foot, causing him to put his other foot down and officially be eliminated. For weeks afterwards, when Lawler was appearing on commentary, he was shown with his one foot bandaged.
  • On Saturday Nights Main Event, Jake Roberts faced Kamala. During the match, Jake repeatedly stomped on Kamala's bare feet.
  • A quick comedic moment came on the third Ring of Honor show Low Ki and then new comer AJ Styles tried to kick each other at the same time and instead sent each other's ankles together, causing them both to stagger.
  • "A barefoot match" is a rare gimmick match usually played for laughs. LLF Noche Extrema Vol. 8, which featured a tag team extreme rules barefoot match was played a bit more seriously though.
  • In a 2005 match, Jushin Thunder Liger tried a Vertical Suplex on Samoa Joe, but seemingly couldn't lift him. Then Liger stomps on Joe's foot, and when Joe jumps up in pain, Liger uses that momentum to lift him for the suplex.
  • Stomps and punches to the toes are calling cards of Fred Yehi, who spends most of his matches attacking the very weakest parts of the body. If the promotion in question doesn't slap him for small joint manipulation anyway.
  • In a 2014 match, Joey Ryan pulled off Matt Jackson's shoe and then dropped him onto a pile of thumbtacks.
  • At Payback 2015, Rusev tried to stomp on John Cena, but Cena rolled out of the way and Rusev's foot hit the steel steps, making him stagger and clutch it.
  • One time, Randy Orton dropped a sledgehammer on Eric Bischoff's foot.
  • At Mystery Vortex IV, The Young Bucks stomped on Matt Riddle's bare feet, and even Superkicked his foot. The damage made Matt hurt himself when he tried to kick them.

  • Just missing the hop in Bleak Expectations: Protagonist Pip Bin is meeting with the King of England and having a nice conversation when the king suddenly yells out in pain.
    King: Arrgghh, the pain, the damnable pain! Sorry, it's just this gout, it feels exactly like a child stabbing me in the foot with a fork.
    Pip Bin: Umm... Sire, you do have a small child stabbing you in the foot with a fork.
    King: Yes, I know that. The gout is in the other foot. The child is to equalize the pain across both feet.
    King: Arrrgggh, the pain, the damnable pain! Sorry, it's just this child stabbing me in the foot with a fork. Feels just like gout. Aaaaggghhhh, the gout! Aaagggh the child!

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons: In addition to caltrops, several spells have the ability to turn the ground spiky, making the terrain difficult to travel through (unless, of course, you can fly) and do damage.
  • Anyone who's ever stepped on a D4 barefoot can attest to the fact that these things can hurt.

  • A gag in the stage version of Animal Crackers (not included in the movie version) involves this during the scene where Chico and Harpo plan to steal the painting, and Harpo has the fold-up latter set upside-down.
    Chico: You gotta put in on da feet first.
    (Harpo slams the ladder down on Chico's foot)
    Chico: AAUGH! Not my feet!
    (Harpo slams the ladder down on his own foot and hops in pain)
    Chico: Not your feet, the ladder's feet.
  • Played for Drama despite the semi-comic singing of the scene in The Magic Flute. Monastatos brags about having captured Papageno and Tamina, as they were escaping, and Sarastro "rewards" him with "only seventy-seven strokes on the soles".

  • Finding a LEGO brick with a bare foot is always a painful experience.

    Web Animation 

    Web Original 
  • The Atari 5200 episode in The Angry Video Game Nerd has James picking up an old TV. The cord for the plug gets caught in the radiator valve and as soon as he pulls it away from the window...
  • During a battle in The Princess Thieves, Robin ends up without shoes and winds up cutting his feet up badly and has them stamped on by an opponent.
  • In Smosh "Playing With Guns" Ian shoots Anthony's foot by accident, Ian tries to stop the bleeding by hammering it with a chisel. Then the whole thing was just a theoretical tale by Anthony to which he would only let Ian give him a piggyback ride if it happened. Ian then does it.
  • In Worm, Skitter cuts off several of Bakuda's toes, as she was using toe rings to set off her bombs.
  • Shawna Howson, AKA Nanalew, likes going barefoot and eschewing footwear. Unfortunately, on the first of a trip to the Bahamas with her friend Naomi, where they walked barefoot across a beach and the nearby crags, Shawna slipped while standing atop one of the rocks bordering the ocean and it cut the bottom of her foot. The two had to go to a nearby drugstore and find the closest thing to disinfectant, rubbing alcohol, so Shawna's cut wouldn't be infected. Surprisingly, the rubbing alcohol didn't sting or burn when she swabbed the cut. Shawna's cut did not stop her from enjoying a proper walk across pleasantly soft sand later on the trip, and she updated viewers that it was healing well. Ironically, in this follow-up video, Naomi kicked off her uncomfortable sandals on the path to a second beach and complained that she wore the wrong shoes for the walk and removed them earlier than planned on the beach, where Shawna removed hers to enjoy the sand and do some gentle rock climbing. Of course, Shawna and Naomi later used common sense and donned protective sneakers for a beach made out of glass.

Alternative Title(s): Agony Of De Feet