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There's snow way he'll survive that.

"Yeah, that's your spinal cord, baby! Dig it!"

It's never enough to kill someone by tearing out their heart. You always, always have to hold it up in front of their eyes as the life goes out of them. Bonus points if the victim doesn't actually die until the heart is destroyed somehow.

While the heart is the most common organ by far, this can be done with almost anything that it will clearly mean certain death to remove.

For bonus points feel free to insert it into the orifice of your choice.note  Or crush it in your hand. Or simply beat them with it. Or even eat it.

This trope often turns up among the Mayincatec. For extra creepy factor, add a Beat Still, My Heart effect.

A type of Attack on the Heart.

Unmarked spoilers. It's a death trope.



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    Anime and Manga 
  • Revy from Black Lagoon threatens to show kid hostage Garcia "the colour of his breakfast" after he throws food at her.
  • Happens to most of the main cast in Captain Harlock: Endless Odyssey (though they didn't actually lose their hearts, the Big Bad was trying to trick them into making them think it had happened so it could possess their bodies.)
  • The fifth episode of Dorohedoro has Fujita and Ebisu attacked by by a duo of rival magic users. Things look pretty bleak until Always a Bigger Fish comes into play and the duo is slaughtered by Shin and Noi, who hate bullies. One dies when Shin stabs his hand through the guy's chest, ripping his heart out in the proccess and the other is split in half by Noi's hand chop. Then they take the corpses, arrange them together and gleefully call the abomination "bully sandwich". A perfect summation of what Dorohedoro is generally like.
  • Araya Souren does this to Touko in the fifth movie of Kara no Kyoukai. This being the Nasuverse they still manage to have a philosophical conversation before he crushes it. She gets better.
  • Young assassin Killua from Hunter × Hunter tears a gruesome serial killer's heart out with his bare hand, without spilling any blood for good measure. The serial killer turns to Killua, motioning in terror to his heart, and basically says, "Hey! Give it back!", before he watches the assassin crush it. Somehow, the man doesn't die until Killua has crushed the (still beating) heart in his hand. The anime censors this scene a little, and arguably makes it worse, having Killua put the heart in a little bag, and making him watch it sloooowly stop beating. Then he puts the bag in the dead man's hand.
  • In One Piece we now have Trafalgar Law using his powers to remove the heart of - of all people - Smoker. Yes, that Smoker - the badass that series protagonist Luffy never managed to defeat in a one-on-one. He had his heart taken from him by Law shortly after they started fighting in the form of cube type object with his heart inside flying from his body, leaving a square shaped hole in his chest. Law, annoyed by Smoker's questioning, then coldly quipped to him "I don't have to tell you anything..." before he slumps to the ground, presumably defeated.
    • This ability allows Law to take the target's heart without killing him, and Smoker eventually gained his back. Presumably this ability was what allowed Law to acquire the one hundred hearts that he sent to the World Government to gain a position among the Seven Warlords of the Sea.
  • Kill la Kill had Ragyo Kiryuin do this to Ryuko in episode 18, revealing to everyone (including Ryuko) that her body was infused with Life Fibers, and that she was the second child that Ragyo and her husband conceived, experimented with Life Fibers, (presumably) failed, and dropped down a garbage chute. Oh, and this episode aired the day before Valentine's Day.
  • In Bleach chapter 666, Grimmjow impales his arm through Askin De Le Vaar from behind and pulls his heart out in the process, then crushes it. Surprisingly, this does not kill him...not right away at least.
  • Invoked in, of all series, Ranma ½, where the Yamasenken style features a technique explicitly used to rip out an opponent's heart.
  • Invoked in 3×3 Eyes: in the Egyptian Kunlun, Yakumo and Pai find some murals depicting the Egyptian trial of the soul, with Anubis weighting the heart on the scales. While Pai mocks it as a misguided human attempt to mimic the arts of Immortality the Sanzhiyan possess ("I mean, if you gouge out your heart you'll die for real!), Yakumo realises that the murals are actually instructions left by a Wu on how to open the passage: namely, a Wu must cut out his own heart and offer it to the Stone Anubis guarding the dungeon.
  • In what is almost undoubtedly an homage to the Dungeons & Dragons spell Heartclutch (below), Overlord has the titular Villain Protagonist's favorite Death spell "Grasp Heart", which causes the target's heart (or a projection thereof) to appear within the lich's bony hand, whereupon it attempts to crush it, killing the target instantly upon success or stunning it briefly otherwise.

    Comic Books 
  • In Angel & Faith, a flashback shows Angelus killing Drusilla's father by tearing out his heart with his bare hands.
  • A Batman villain named Midnight had this as his actually a her gimmick. Everyone in Gotham seemed to be Made of Plasticine in that issue, because he could remove people's hearts just by poking them with his pointed cane. The sheer impossibility of this, coupled with Midnight's Large Ham nature, made him far too Narmy to take seriously.
  • Near the end of Emperor Joker, The Joker, as a Reality Warper, rips out Superman's heart. Superman survives for minutes, apparently either because of his super-durability or thanks to Joker using his omnipotence for keeping him alive. Supes actually hugged the sun to his chest (he and the Joker were enlarged at the time) to counteract this.
  • This is the M.O. for the Black Lanterns. Atrocitus survives due to the powers of his red ring.
  • In The Darkness, Jackie took out some dude's skeleton and showed it to him. "Pop."
  • Annihilation has Drax the Destroyer kill Thanos by punching through his back and shoving his heart out of his chest. Thanos simply looks down at it and says "Interesting."
    • Thanos gets it again in Secret Wars (2015), with a powered-up Doom ripping out his spine.
  • Spider-Man, like many other heroes in Marvel's Mys-Tech Wars miniseries, is killed when he is overpowered by invading demons and his heart is ripped out.
  • The Punisher: Among Barracuda's many, many horrible deeds, there was the time Ebbing paid him to ensure his peace and quiet. Two convicts who'd been bothering Ebbing were later found with their eyes plucked out, their testicles in each other's eye sockets, and their eyelids sewn up. Their eyeballs were never found, and they were still alive after that.
  • Black Moon Chronicles: Wismerhill finally defeats Haazheel Thorn by tearing his heart out of his chest.
  • In a particularly convoluted example, the Batman villain Hush kidnapped Catwoman, used his surgical skills to remove Catwoman's heart, leaving her on life support, and showed it to Batman. Luckily, he was able to get it back.

  • In the Homestuck fanfic "A Wound For Two," Vriska rips out Karkat's heart. Incredibly, he still lives long enough to kiss her (and, it's implied, to be saved through cyber-prostethics).
  • In the infamously gory My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fanfic, "Cupcakes", Pinkie Pie does this to Rainbow Dash's entrails while cheerfully cracking jokes. The fact that the jokes are entirely in-character makes it that much creepier.
  • In Fellowship of the Raven, the Baron of Vallaki dies this way when he attempts to lie to Strahd von Zarovich and blame the injuries he inflicted on Ireena while interrogating her (for information she didn't even have, no less) on her monstrous older brother Izek, his own enforcer, before he realized who she was to Strahd. Strahd sees through it in an instant and tears the Baron's heart out before crushing it and feeding his body to his vampire spawn.
  • The Pony POV Series has this as one of the only ways the Dark World mane cast can actually die, due to having Complete Immortality and their hearts replaced with the Elements of Chaos, the other being destroying their Element (easier said than done). Ironically, the only two its actually happened to ended up surviving. Angry Pie ends up doing it to Twilight, leaving her to die afterwards, but Twilight finds a replacement. Rainbow Dash later inverts this by tearing her own out and showing it to Rarity to shock her out of her self delusion, but puts it back.
  • It's pretty much routine in any snuff fiction that involves decapitation for the victim (almost Always Female) to be shown her own headless body before she loses consciousness. Usually while someone is still...making use of it.
  • This is how Voldemort bites it in Mutant Storm, as Harry uses his mutant ability to pull out the former's heart out of his chest.
  • In Unnatural Disaster 2.8, Sophia pulls Egbert's heart out of his body and lets him see it, finishing him off.
  • In the Final Fantasy VII fanfic Cissnei's Path, Rosso the Crimson rips the Protomateria out of Vincent's chest. Since he's undead and that was the only thing allowing him to control Chaos, she's as good as killed him unless he gets it back.
  • The Pieces Lie Where They Fell: Sunset Shimmer threatens to do this to Princess Celestia's killer once she returns to Equestria, unaware (until Page informs her) that Chrysalis has been dead for a thousand years.
  • Doing this is a necessary way to create veidrdraugrnote  in Child of the Storm. Gravemoss does this to Sif under Paris, but thankfully Harry Dresden blows him sky-high before he can do anything else. (This is Not Hyperbole, by the way. He literally punted Gravemoss into the stratosphere. Because he's awesome like that).
  • In Never Betray A Fox a feral Harry rips out Bellatrix's heart and then taunts her husband and brother-in-law with it.
  • In Time out of Place Death Eaters cut out a Muggle's heart and he dies watching its final beat.

    Films — Animated 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Vampire in Brooklyn: Combined with an invitation to "Put a little heart in it"
  • Wayne's World
    • Ed O'Neill's character suggests that a man who got fired do it to his boss. The man replies that he'd rather file a grievance with his union.
    • Wayne does it to Cassandra's father in the sequel during a daydream sequence.
  • Give 'Em Hell, Malone: Malone has a fearsome reputation from hunting down the people who killed his family and ripping their hearts out with his bare hands. Though since his family are not dead, he probably never killed anyone that way.
    Whitmore: And, Boulder... ripped out a man's heart and ate it? The physics of punching through a man's sternum alone make that an impossibility. Next time, spare me the hyperbole.
  • Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom features a famous scene in which the villain pulls a man's heart out during a Human Sacrifice ritual. Due to the supernatural nature of the ceremony, the victim survives for several minutes before being lowered into lava, at which point his still-beating heart burns up in the Big Bad's hand as the body is incinerated below.
  • Stamper planned to do this to James Bond in Tomorrow Never Dies. Bond escapes before he can, obviously.
  • Viktor from Underworld (2003) doesn't even realise that Selene's swing had hit until she shows him the blade covered in his blood. He then dies.
  • In Dumb and Dumber, Jim Carrey's character daydreams about fighting the staff of a restaurant, culminating in him ripping the chef's heart out, putting it inside a doggy bag, closing the bag up, and handing it back to the chef just before he falls over.
  • In Kenneth Branagh's adaptation of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, the monster does this to Elizabeth, and holds it up to Victor before diving out a window.
  • The character Frost in From Dusk Till Dawn rips out the heart of one of the vampires, paired with Beat Still, My Heart, after which, Sex Machine kills the vampire by stabbing the heart with a pencil.
  • In Last of the Mohicans, the warrior Magua cuts out the heart of Colonel Munro in the midst of a pitched battle.
  • Once Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon shifts from documentary into full-blown slasher film, Leslie Vernon does this to one of his victims with a post hole digger.
  • The single goriest moment of the first Psycho Cop film has this, but it's not saying much.
  • In The Chronicles of Riddick, the Lord Marshall does this to a Helion Prime native who refuses to convert. Except instead of his heart, he pulls out his soul.
  • In Electra (no, not that one, the 1996 film with Shannon Tweed), the hero's Love Interest tears off the heart of a female Mook, setting up a "heartless bitch!" line.
  • The Toxic Avenger does this sort of thing with various body parts. However, the first and arguably funniest instance occurs in the first movie, in which he grabs a man's arm and rips it off with such ease that the man has time to break out of a grapple and shout a threat to the titular monster before he even realizes his arm is still in Toxie's hand. As soon as he notices, Toxie smacks him to the ground with the disembodied limb.
  • Braindead : this happens to a victim when the zombies crash the party.
  • In the film Hannibal, the title character cuts out parts of Ray Liotta's brain and feeds it to him while still alive.
  • During the climax of RoboCop 2, Murphy defeats the Robocop-ified Cain by detaching the module containing the villain's brain, then smashing it on the ground. The module is still wired up to Robocop 2's cameras, and Cain's Oh, Crap! expression can be seen on a video screen, confirming he's watching his own brain being spiked.
  • Iron Man: Obadiah Stane pulls out Tony's artificial "heart", the arc reactor, and then taunts the hero while holding it out in front of him.
  • In the climax of The Woman the feral woman kills Chris by stabbing her hand into his gut, rifling around with his innards, ripping out his heart, and eating it in front of him just before he dies.
  • Subverted in Crank: High Voltage. While Chelios does wake up during the operation that installs his artificial heart, and see his original heart being examined, he gets up and clobbers the surgeon before his other parts can be fatally removed.
  • In Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives, Jason punches his hand through Hawes' torso, grabbing his heart in the process.
  • Pro Wrestlers vs. Zombies has Angus eating the still-beating heart of a woman in front of her as she dies. Twice.
  • In "The Fright Before Xmas" segment from Campfire Tales (1991), Satan Claus lifts Steve by the neck and rips out his heart.
  • An organ donor in Monty Python's The Meaning of Life answers the door only to get his liver ripped out painfully, despite his protests that "I'm using it." Not only does his wife stand by watching impassively, but one jaunty musical number later, she's agreed to donate her liver as well.
  • A variation is done in the Tales from the Crypt segment "Poetic Justice". Arthur Grimsdyke rips off James Elliott's heart, and although he doesn't show it to James, he does leave it as a nasty surprise for James' father.
  • In Avengers: Age of Ultron, Scarlet Witch destroys Ultron Prime's vibranium body by pulling his "heart" (really a power source) out through his chest. Ultron is an AI, though, so he manages to exist through one final drone before he meets his final fate upon encountering The Vision.
  • In the Chuck Norris supernatural thriller Hellbound, the demonic villain Prosatanos murders a Rabbi by ripping out his heart and laughing at the old man.
  • In Sinbad of the Seven Seas, Sinbad defeats the leader of the demonic ghouls attacking his ship by ripping out its heart and crushing it in front of it.
  • At one point in Alita: Battle Angel, Alita takes out her own still-beating heart, attached to her via wires, and shows it to her beloved Hugo, suggesting that they sell it to earn enough money to get to Zalem, where she thinks they could get a cheaper alternative. Hugo is understandably befuddled.
  • At the end of Rambo: Last Blood, Rambo kills Hugo Martinez by disemboweling his chest then ripping his heart out.

  • Referenced in Discworld's Interesting Times (they're discussing the meaning of "drawn and quartered"):
    "I think your innards are cut out and shown to you."
    "What for?"
    "I don't really know. To see if you recognize them, I suppose."
    "What... like, 'Yep, that's my kidneys, yep, that's my breakfast'?"
  • Roger Zelazny's Creatures of Light and Darkness had a very darkly humorous scene in which the god Horus consults a fortune-teller, specifically a reader of entrails. The entrails belong to the fortune-teller's chief rival, who gives accurate predictions while berating the fortune-teller for messing up. (Classic Line: "Those are my entrails! I will not have them misread by a poseur!")
  • Sword of Truth - Wizards' First Rule
    • The Big Bad Darken Rahl practices divination by reading the entrails of living humans. If his prisoners won't talk, he can use this as a last resort to get information from them, but can only get one or two words, like a name or the answer to a yes/no question.
    • Later, Kahlan castrates Demmin Nass and feeds him the removed parts. Before you feel pity for him, a minute before that she asked him how many little boys he raped and murdered, and the only answer he could provide was "a hundred or so".
  • In Forgotten Realms - Spine Of The World, a guard grabs a decapitated man's head and turns it towards the rest of the decapitated body in the hopes that the severed head lives long enough to see it.
  • In The Subtle Blade, there's a character in Artemis's old assassin's guild who claims he can rip a man's heart out so quickly that he can show it to the victim while it still beats. Artemis isn't remotely impressed and kills him with little effort.
  • Apparently occurred in the Doctor Who Expanded Universe Eighth Doctor Adventures novel The Adventuress Of Henrietta Street. The Doctor lived to have nightmares about it.
    • In the Ninth Doctor Adventures novel Only Human, the batshit insane villainess removes one of the Doctor's hearts and shows it to him. This actually isn't a problem for him, as said villainess comes from a future where medical science is ridiculously advanced, to the point where they can separate a head from a body without killing the victim, with the two parts still somehow remaining connected. The Doctor is also drugged up with some pretty trippy stuff to the point that he only registers mild discomfort at this. The scene is still strangely horrific, what with the description of the Doctor feeling his insides being mauled about and feeling that he maybe ought to be upset by this.
  • Anna Nimity from In the Realm of Carnal Horror does this several times in a row to multiple victims.
  • In Jurassic Park, Nedry gets his stomach slashed open and gets to see/feel his own organs before he dies. This is decidedly more graphic than the movie, which used a Gory Discretion Shot.
  • Mother Lenka, in Paladin of Shadows - Unto the Breach, rips the heart out of a captured Chechen fighter, and bites into it while the former owner is dying.
  • American Psycho: Patrick Bateman does this with a chainsaw and a woman's entire lower half. Maybe.
  • Non-fatal example in the My Teacher Is an Alien series: Peter undergoes a voluntary surgery to allow the aliens to study his brain, only to wake up and have them off-handedly show him it in a jar, connected back to his body with wires. He's a bit freaked out, but they put it back in shortly thereafter and he's no worse for the wear.
  • Silverwing: The Vampyrum do that to their sacrificial animals in the second book. At one point (after a dream) Goth becomes obsessed with ripping Shade's heart out of his chest and eating it while Shade watches.
  • In Monster Hunter Nemesis, a security guard's heart is ripped out of his chest by Kurst, and briefly stares in disbelief at the still-beating organ before he dies.
  • In The Nekropolis Archives, in the novel Dead Streets, the Frankenstein creation Baristastein rips out a minotaur's heart and holds it up so he can watch it stop beating.
  • Occurs twice in Watersong. In Lullaby, when Lexi kills Sawyer by thrusting her arm through his chest and ripping his heart out, holding it for a moment before sliding her arm out and letting him fall. She then considers eating his heart, but decides that would take too much time when she has more important things to be doing. In Tidal, Penn kills Lexi in the same manner. Since sirens don't die until they both have their heart torn out and are decapitated, Penn lets Lexi take a good, long look at her heart before finishing her.
  • In Void City, Eric kills some werewolves by using his super-strength to rip their hearts right out of their chests, holding the organs up in front of them as they die.
  • About a third of the way through the first The Paper Magician book, a villain shows up and rips out the heart of magician Emery Thane. Thanks to some hastily-crafted magic from his apprentice, this is not immediately fatal, though it's made clear he has only a day or so to live unless his heart is returned.
  • In the Warhammer Gotrek & Felix book Demonslayer, a greater demon was defeated and banished by a dwarf lord a century ago, at which point the demon promised it would one day return to eat his liver while he watched. The eponymous heroes arrive just as the demon has returned to make good on its promise. It does so, shortly before they manage to kill it.
  • In the first poem of the Vita Nuova, Love appears out of thin air holding Dante's heart in his hand while it burns. Dante doesn't seem to be mind losing the heart and seeing Love feed it to someone, because dreams are weird like that.

    Live-Action TV 
  • True Blood
    • Sam VS Maryann in the season 2 finale. Transformed into a giant bull with enormous horns, he tricks her into coming closer and dropping her guard. As soon as she's close enough, he rips through her body with his horns, shifting back into a human which changes the horn into his arm. He grasps Maryann's black heart while she is still alive. She utters "Was there no God?" before he finally destroys the heart, turning her into a corpse.
    • Eric did this to Marnie's companion Roy in episode 4x11 who attempts a: "You'll have to Go Through Me " tactic. Bonus points for casually sipping his blood through the detached aorta while looking Marnie in the eye.
  • Painkiller Jane: In the TV adaptation they quickly show that a neuro who can walk through walls is no Kitty Pryde expy by having her use her power to kill needlessly.
  • In a detention-level in Angel, prisoners have their hearts torn out and shown to them regularly (once a day?) by a torture demon. They recover with no ill-effects and almost no memory of the event except a lingering sense of dread about going into the cellar.
    • Notably, Spike invokes this trope on Lindsey without even realizing it, as he holds up a human heart from a pile of them and asks whose it is.
  • In a 3rd Rock from the Sun episode, Sally asked her boyfriend how he would feel if she were suddenly out of his life. When he said he would be unhappy, she asked if it would be like "someone ripped out your heart and showed it to you", to which he replied "well... not showed it to me."
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
    • Buffy kills Adam, the Season 4 Big Bad, by ripping out his Uranium-235 power core and holding it up in front of him. Adam promptly keels over dead.
    • Much earlier, Buffy threatens Whistler with something similar. Specifically, she threatens to pull out his ribcage and wear it as a hat.
  • The Evil Queen of Once Upon a Time does this with the Huntsman's heart after she pulls it out of him. However, because of her magic, she's able to do it without killing him At least not then...
    • Her mother Cora was also fond of this, and used it to Regina's one true love. In front of Regina. Cora and Regina both learned this from Rumplestiltskin.
    • Rumplestiltskin used this on his ex-wife, after she tells him she never loved him.
    • Cora does this to herself in her youth due to her belief that Love Is a Weakness.
    • As noted above, ripping the heart out isn't fatal. Destroying the heart afterward is.
  • A non-fatal example occurs in the Lexx episode "791". The prisoners on the crashed transport have their hearts removed and their bodies put on life support to make sure they can't escape- and to make matters worse, they're fully conscious when their hearts are removed.
  • In Heroes the legend of Takezo Kensei features a self-inflicted version of this. Kensei learns his sword skills from a dragon, who returns years later to take Kensei's wife as payment. Instead, Kensei cuts out his own heart, hands it to the dragon and tells him, "My love is in here. Take it", before dying.
  • 2 Broke Girls. Mentioned metaphorically when Caroline meets David in the episode "And the Broken Hearts". He jokingly says she, "tore his heart out and shook it in front of his face."
  • The Masters of Horror episode "Imprint". After Christopher shoots Komono through the head in his madness, she picks out a few pieces of her brain in shock before she dies.
  • Michael Kepler on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation has a Catapult Nightmare in which he reaches into a woman's chest and withdraws her beating heart. As it's a dream, she just keeps standing there.
  • A Stargate SG-1 episode shows a girl with the Genetic Memory of the Go'uld System Lord Sekhmet threatening the evil scientist who created her with ripping out his heart and making him eat it.
  • Probably as a reference to a similar event in the novel, Hannibal's title character feeds Abel Gideon his own severed and cooked leg. The victim is surprisingly cordial throughout the whole event.
  • Mary Rice Hopkins and Puppets With a Heart, a Christian children's show airing on Smile of a Child TV, has the titular singer rip out some of her puppet friends' hearts, then open them to show what symbolic objects are inside, i.e. insects to indicate that they're "bugged" by something. It makes a lot more sense in context, especially for a kids show.
  • In the Bizaardvark episode "Unboxing", this is one of the techniques Frankie does while shadowboxing after joining a mixed martial arts program. When Paige later considers having to break it to Frankie that she doesn't want to train with her because she specifically turned to MMA to have some alone time, she has an Imagine Spot of Frankie screaming hysterically at Paige before ripping out her heart.
  • The Vampire Diaries and The Originals abuse this trope. It appears almost every time a vampire wants to kill another vampire, a werewolf or anyone else, for that matter.
  • In Legends of Tomorrow "Aruba", Thawne murders Doomworld!Ray by ripping his heart out.
  • Hemlock Grove: Olivia rips out Norman's heart after he turns against her, complete with corny Bond One-Liner.
  • The X-Files "Milagro", Mulder and Scully begin discussing a case the pair are working on, wherein the heart of the victim had been removed with the absence of any significant physical evidence. Mulder believes the heart was removed with a technique known as psychic surgery. Meanwhile, Padgett, who is Mulder's neighbor, stands on a chair with his ear to an air vent, listening to the conversation. Padgett converses with the killer from his book, a deceased Brazilian surgeon named Ken Naciamento (Nestor Serrano). It is revealed that through some sort of psychic connection, Padgett's Naciamento has come back to life and has been removing hearts from victims.

  • The cover of Eagles of Death Metal's album Heart On.
  • The video for Gnarl's Barkley's "Who's Gonna Save My Soul Now" has a guy doing this to the girl that dumped him.
  • Rarely seen with GWAR.
  • Green Day's "American Idiot"
  • "And the last thing I see is my heart still beating uh breakin' outta my body and flyin' away" from Meatloaf's Bat Out Of Hell
  • According to Weird Al's song "CNR" and as demonstrated in the music video, Charles Nelson Reilly can do this to you.
    • Weird Al also proposes this as a method of suicide in "One More Minute": "I'd rather rip my heart out of my ribcage with my bare hands and then throw it on the floor and stomp on it 'till I die."
  • In the Avenged Sevenfold song A Little Piece of Heaven, there is a line which says, "Ripped her heart out right before her eyes! Eyes over easy, eat it, eat it, eat it!"

    Stand Up Comedy 

    Tabletop Games 
  • One of the many bizarre things you can do in Exalted with high-powered Supernatural Martial Arts is to inflict "Jigsaw Organ Condition" on a person. This will allow you to pull their heart out and show it to them, without this necessarily doing them any permanent harm.
  • Flavor text for the Netrunner card "Black Dahlia":
    She broke my heart - but at least she showed it to me first.
  • Warhammer 40,000 Black Crusade describes a drug that is made from a space marine's organs while he is made to watch. It is never clarified if making him watch actually does anything to the drug itself; but then, the Emperor's Children and their kind would do it anyway.
    • Roboute Guilliman does this to Kor Phaeron as a truly epic Shut Up, Hannibal! in the Horus Heresy novel Know No Fear.
    • Less lethally, at the end of Fear to Tread, Horus peels off Erebus's face and waves it in front of him.
  • Dungeons & Dragons: the Book of Vile Darkness supplement featured a Cleric spell called Heartclutch which magically transported the target's heart to the caster's hand, causing the unfortunate victim to die within 1 to 3 rounds. (Or just take a chunk of damage if the target succeeded on its save.)

    Theme Parks 
  • At Universal's Halloween Horror Nights, this is the signature kill of "The Caretaker", who will slowly and painfully rip out the heart of his victims and then show it to them (and to the watching audience) just before they die.

    Video Games 
  • In Mortal Kombat, Kano and his various imitators can rip people's hearts out, while they don't directly hold the hearts in front of their victims, they do hold the hearts up for everyone to see (Including the victim, if that particular game makes him fall backward afterwards). Kobra takes it one step further by shoving the heart into the victim's mouth.
    • In Undercover Brother token white guy Lance is so enraged at being called a sissy towards the end of the movie, he performs various fatalities from Mortal Kombat on the guards; including Kano's And Show It to You move.
    • In Mortal Kombat 9, Kano's heart rip fatality actually fits the "Show it to 'em" criteria, as he spins them around, so he faces his opponent's back, and then rams his fist through their back and out their chest, clutching their heart in his hand right in front of their face.
    • This move even managed to get into the PG-rated Wreck-It Ralph, although it may have helped that Kano used it on a zombie.
    • In Mortal Kombat X, Kotal Kahn's fatality has him cut a hole in his victim's chest, rip out their heart, hold it up high and pop it with a squeeze so that he can drink their blood.
  • One of the many, many over-the-top finishers available in MadWorld. And it's one of the tamer ones.
  • In Revenant the player's character repeatedly threatens people with the sight of their own organs.
  • One of the Stealth kills in Legacy of Kain: Blood Omen 2 involves sneaking up behind an enemy, punching through their back, grabbing their heart and pushing it out through the front of their ribcage, where presumably the victim has a good view of it.
  • Beating people to death with their own severed limbs is extremely common and satisfying in Dwarf Fortress adventure mode. Even better is to beat a mother to death with the body of her child you just killed in front of her.
  • In Shadow Warrior Rippers, gorilla-like monsters who love to rip you to shreds with their claws, rip out your heart while killing you. You still see it beating in their hands as you lie dead.
  • The only reason why Gilgamesh manages to avoid this, in Fate/stay night's UBW route, is because he forcibly removed Illya's eyes before ripping out her heart. Yes, he far worse this route than the others.
    • Oh, and here's the scene from the movie adaptation. In the adaptation, it fits better as he doesn't 'forcibly remove' Illya's eyes first, so the sobbing girl has to see him "de-heart" her before dying. No wonder Shirou was horrified.
  • During the endgame of Dragon Age: Origins, Oghren caps off a surprisingly touching speech (for him, anyway) to the Warden with "Let us show them our hearts, and then show them theirs!"
  • At the beginning of Dragon's Dogma, the Dragon plucks out your heart. You get to witness the Dragon then eat your heart before passing out. The game then becomes about slaying the Dragon and reclaiming your heart as the Arisen.
  • In the Team Fortress 2 video "Meet the Medic", the Medic has removed the Heavy's heart in order to connect it to a scientific doodad that, in conjunction with a surge from his medigun, can render the Heavy invulnerable. The Heavy is awake the whole time, being kept alive by the running medigun mounted over the operating table. Too bad the Heavy's heart couldn't handle the power and it blew up. The Medic replaced it with a spare Mega-Baboon's heart with the Heavy none the wiser. The Heavy does wonder if he really should be awake during this procedure.
  • In Serious Sam 3: BFE, you can do this to Beheaded Rocketeers. And then you can toss it at others for an achievement.
  • M.U.G.E.N has a modified version of Elque, who rips out his opponent's heart, shows it to them, then crushes it as a special finisher.
  • In Charlie Murder, at later levels you can choose a skill called, appropriately, "Heart Rip". It can only be done as a Finishing Move on especially weakened enemies. During that ability, your character rips out the enemy's heart, shows it to them, and eats it. A later version of the skill eventually provides healing for eating the heart too.
  • Raiden kills Senator Armstrong in this manner in Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, but said character is too busy giving a Motive Rant and Not So Different speech to even notice.
  • Wind Child Black has the Black Knight do this to a military commander as revenge for the commander's participation in the genocide of the Knight's people. Being a sprite-based game made with RPG Maker, it's not terribly graphic.
  • Tenchu: Wrath of Heaven features Tesshu as an unlockable character. While he uses needles as his main weapon, he also uses his brute strength for stealth kills, the most brutal is perhaps the one performed from the front of a target, where he rips out their heart and crushes it, accompanied by an x-ray of their beating heart as Tesshu grabs it.
  • In Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs, when you finally find your children (or visions of them), they tear out their own hearts to show you. And do it again in subsequent meetings.
  • Done in Super Cosplay War Ultra, where one attack by Erus has her re-enact Killua's heart-ripping scene in Hunter × Hunter with her opponent. The attack only takes a 5th of their lifebar, and can be done multiple times.
  • In DOOM (2016), the Glory Kill for the Mancubus involves ripping its heart out of its bloated gut and shoving it down its mouth.
  • At the end of Deltarune Chapter 1, Kris falls out of bed after having a seizure-like fit, slowly struggles to their feet, shuffles around like a zombie, and then plunges a hand into their own chest and tears their soul out of their body! They hold it up almost triumphantly, before flinging it into a bird cage in the corner of their room.

    Web Animation 

  • Looking for Group: Done by an Enfant Terrible Undead Child, no less.
    "The look on your face when a toddler rips out your heart and shows it to you. Priceless."
  • In the Great Outdoor Fight story arc on Achewood, one of the competitors threatens to tear off [Ray's] Legs and piss up the stumps, to which Ray replies thusly
    "Man, that's crazy talk! A leg ain't got no holes where your urine can go."
  • Butch R. Mann of Chopping Block has tried this, but the victims never live long enough to see their own hearts.
  • Stories exist of Jeanne Noelle from The Dreadful force-feeding people pieces of themselves.
  • In Girl Genius, Bangladesh Dupree was a terrible patient until the head doctor explained he was willing to use this trope if she didn't behave.
  • Questionable Content has a non-lethal foot example where a robotic law enforcement agent, Officer Basilisk, goes to a repair shop run by Faye and Bubbles due to her malfunctioning foot. She expresses discomfort about seeing people work on her foot, which eventually results in her actually fainting when Faye disconnects her foot and shows it to Basilisk. (The intent was benign but still traumatic).

    Web Original 
  • "Dude, that's my heart."
  • The SCP Foundation has SCP-953, which does this with her victims' livers, and eats them.
  • The Angry Video Game Nerd does this to himself after playing a 3-in-1 NES game based on The Bible:
    Nerd: But I'm aware that the last screen is supposed to be plain text that says "Give your heart to Jesus", but I'm not seeing it, so I'm assuming I'm supposed to beat all 3 games to see the true ending, and I'm not going through all that trouble, although I will give my heart to Jesus. [plunges his hand into his chest and rips out his own heart, then starts screaming in pain] GAH! AAHH JESUS!
  • Inverted in the Alice Isn't Dead episode "Omelet," when Humanoid Abomination The Thistle Man slowly and casually inflicts a mortal injury on a hapless victim as a private "demonstration" for the Narrator after asking if she wants to "see sumthin' funny." He bites off a chunk of a man's flesh at the site of an artery, and as his victim exsanguinates, keeps digging out flesh from the wound to eat, purely to show off.

    Western Animation 
  • The Simpsons
    • In "New Kid on the Block", after Bart learns the girl next door (whom he has a crush on) has a boyfriend, Bart imagines her ripping out his heart and kicking it away to land in a wastebasket.
    • After angering a temple of Shaolin monks in "Goo Goo Gai Pan", one of them rips out Homer's heart, shows it to him, and puts it back. Homer just hopes he washed his hands first.
    • Conversational Troping about Bart's karate lessons:
      Bart: I learned that thing where you rip out a guy's heart and show it to him before he dies!
      Homer: That'll learn 'em!
    • There's the time Homer becomes a tow truck driver and is warned by a rival;
      If I catch you on my turf, I'll rip your head off, vomit down your neck, rip out your heart, show your heart to your head, and shove 'em both down your neck-hole, to which I previously alluded.
    • In the "Treehouse of Horror IX" segment "Hell Toupee", Homer, possessed by the recently deceased Snake after obtaining a hair transplant from him following the latter's execution, kills Moe by removing his heart with a corkscrew.
    • In the "Treehouse of Horror XXVI" segment "Wanted: Dead, then Alive", after impaling Bart with a Harpoon Gun, Sideshow Bob adds insult to injury and twists it further by yanking the projectile from Bart's chest, ripping out his heart as he does so! Bonus points as Bart sees the hole in his chest, then looks at Bob holding his heart as he utters out his Famous Last Words before dying.
    • When Homer found himself wetting his bed and thought it was guilt-induced, he threw a barbecue with a piñata of himself that was complete with a papier-mache heart. Carl removes it and then beats it with the bat that he hit the piñata with.
  • Futurama
    • Done for comedy in the episode "Roswell That Ends Well". Apparently, Zoidberg has a LOT of redundant organs, as he is able to provide a running commentary on his autopsy, while the doctors take out at least 5 organs and place them aside.
      Doctor: One heart.
      Zoidberg: Take, I've got four of them!
    • Also:
      Zoidberg: Get ready Fry; I'm going to rip your swim bladder out AND SHOW IT TO YOU!
    • And during a war reenactment:
      Darth Trocious: I shall rip out your heart and show it to you! [taps Scruffy with toy lightsaber] It is done!
  • In the extended version of "Robot Riot" from Phineas and Ferb the Movie: Across the 2nd Dimension, Danny of Love Händel gets one of these on a Norm-bot:
    Danny: I'm gonna shut you down, I'm teaching you a lesson: Rip out your CPU and show it to you still processing!
  • Family Guy
    • "Family Guy Viewer Mail No. 1" has a scene where, as his first wish from a genie, Peter wishes to see what Kelly Ripa is like off-set. She's revealed to be an alien who rips out the heart of a guy who's Bound and Gagged in her dressing room before eating it.
    • "Family Goy" does this as a throw-away gag/Temple of Doom homage: Stewie, annoyed by Meg's interrupting his pre-meal prayer, rips out her heart, turning her into a chanting zombie.
  • In the Beavis and Butt-Head episode "Tornado", this is what Beavis thinks tornadoes can do to people.
  • One episode of Xiaolin Showdown showed Past!Good!Chase Young ripping a heart-shaped rock out of a golem in one move. The next shot is from the golem's POV, which blurs and dims as it collapses. The only possible way they got away with that is because it was a rock monster rather than a flesh-and-blood human.
  • In The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes!, Ultron is defeated (the first time) by the Hulk ripping his body open and Ant-Man tearing out his power source, which is located where his heart would be.
  • This is the nightmare demon Spooky Dookie's M.O. in Major Lazer. Of course, when you die in your dreams, you die for real.
  • In Transformers: Prime, Bulkhead once tore the spark chamber out of a Vehicon he was fighting. The round object with several wires attached to it very much resembles a heart.
  • A variant in the SpongeBob SquarePants episode "No Weenies Allowed": in order to be allowed entrance into the Salty Spitoon, Reg the doorman asks people how tough they are. When Sandy comes up, she proves her toughness by ripping the "MOM" heart tattoo off Reg's chest and putting it back on upside-down so that it now reads "WOW".
  • A variant in Teen Titans Go! when Raven pulls Beast Boy's heart out through his mouth, but it's still connected to his circulatory system and it slings back into place when she lets it go.

    Real Life 
  • The old English execution method of hanging, drawing, and quartering reserved for male commoner traitors and a few particularly odious male noble ones, did this with the condemned's intestines and "Privy-Members" as part of the "drawing" section of the punishment (which started before the hanging could kill the victim). In many cases, they would set the aforementioned organs on fire as they did so.
    • Other organs could get into the "drawing" as well, at least according to some accounts: One story has it that when Sir Everard Digby, one of Guy Fawkes' gunpowder plotters, was hanged, drawn, and quartered, the executioner got really into the "drawing", tore out Digby's heart, and cried, "Here is the heart of a traitor!" The slightly implausible part of the story is that Digby came back to life just long enough to shout "Thou liest!"
  • The Khmer Rouge (allegedly) used to cut out their enemies' livers and gall bladders, and sometimes are reported to have put the liver on a stick and parade around with it. It's apparently surprising how long someone can survive while their liver is outside their body.
  • MMA fighter Jarrod Wyattapparently ripped out his training partner's heart (along with tongue and most of his face) because he thought Satan was in him after getting high on "mushroom tea". According to the Daily Mail (so take that as you will), Taylor Powell was still alive when the heart came out, so it might fit under here as well.
  • The Aztecs did this on a daily basis with their captives. They thrust a dagger under the ribs of the victim, yanked their heart out, and held it up as an offering of blood to their gods.
  • A prisoner named Henri Languille, condemned to the Guillotine, became part of a scientific experiment. Immediately upon decapitation, Dr. Beaurieux took the head and spoke the prisoner's name until the eyes stopped responding and looking in the doctor's eyes. Because no EEG was attached, nobody knows whether it was a conscious mental or unconscious muscle/nerve response. One might assume the prisoner got a glimpse of his own body in those few seconds between being severed and unconsciousness. Since it takes a few seconds for the brain to run out of oxygen after blood flow is cut off (either literally, as in the case of decapitation, or in the form of the heart stopping), it's at least possible that a severed head would be able to see and recognize its own body in that brief time.
    • Which is why the Guillotine is now considered by many to be an unnecessarily cruel death, despite having been specifically chosen for the opposite purpose: in a search for a painless execution method, it ends up being mentally painful because it's not physically painful enough. Of course, it could be averted by simply, you know, not lifting the head up for everyone to see.
  • Occasionally, a heart-transplant patient with sufficient scientific and/or morbid curiosity will request, and perhaps even be granted, the chance to see their original heart after their operation.
    • Some, mostly biology teachers, even keep their original hearts in tupperware containers.
  • When the leaders of the Dutch Republic caught Balthasar Gérard, the assassin of William the Silent, they decreed that among other things his heart was to be cut out and flung in his face.
  • In 1966, American Dr. Sam Axelrad amputated the arm of Viet Cong soldier Nguyen Quang Hung, who had been shot by American soldiers. The arm was amputated to prevent further infection, and Axelrad took the arm home as a souvenir. 47 years later, Axelrad returned the bones of the arm to Hung.


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Brutal Legend

Doviculus disposes of Drowned Ophelia after she outlives her usefulness.

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