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Cursed with Awesome

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Oh no! She's cursed to turn into a busty green superstrong amazon! Wait...

Io: I was cursed with agelessness.
Perseus: That's not much of a curse.

Sooner or later, that something you really wanted nothing to do with is going to be what saves you.

A character has some "terrible" curse placed on them (if they weren't born with it) that is actually pretty awesome. Often, such characters will bemoan their fate and go to great lengths to be rid of the "curse" instead of taking advantage of whatever cool side effects the curse may have. Other times it's the "reward" for Heroic Willpower. Sometimes a subset of people try to tell him this. The idea that the awesome is a curse may cause some forms of Internalized Categorism.

Immortality has been done to death under this heading, even garnering its own trope. While eternal life does have some understandable drawbacks, excessive emphasis on the negative side can push it straight into Cursed With Awesome territory, where it becomes another trope. The Emergency Transformation of a character often crosses into this, as the condition is considered literally de-humanizing. The Curse That Cures can skirt this depending on the severity of the curse and the illness or injury it's curing as a side effect.


Vampire protagonists are very frequently Cursed With Awesome.

The jury is out on the justification of the "curse" of Awesome being Fantastic Racism; on one hand, superpowers aren't that much fun when the majority of the population believe suffocating you in your sleep is pest control. On the other, it's not like All of the Other Reindeer will have an easy time burning you. But if you keep driving off every Torch-swinging Muggle for a generation or so, you're just reinforcing the Fantastic Racism... On and on it goes.

This trope is a major source of Angst Dissonance — if not used carefully, then a character being Cursed With Awesome carries the risk of plummeting straight into Wangst or Deus Angst Machina territory, as nothing is guaranteed to piss an audience off more than a character complaining about having abilities that are, on the face of it, utterly fantastic and that the audience would kill to have. This is especially a risk if a balance between the awesomeness of the powers and the suckiness of the consequences of possessing them is not maintained; if the drawbacks are outweighed by the benefits, then the character just looks whiny. On the other hand, it can make for some great Character Development if the character is saddled with something that is genuinely difficult to live with, but later figures out a way to benefit from it.


There are also some cases where the drawback is just a straight-up Informed Flaw, or negated by a bit of Fridge Brilliance. The Super Mode can be legitimately terrifying if the person using it loses control of themselves while remaining aware of what they're doing, but not if they only do things that they could just as well have done anyway and are just as beneficial, but now they have an excuse for behavior that might be otherwise unacceptable. The Smart Guy may be so smart that it's said to alienate others and leave him lonely or anti-social, but if he's in a Five-Man Band, he almost certainly has at least four True Companions.

Occasionally leads to a "World of Cardboard" Speech whether or not the character is unhappy about the effects of their curse.

The Punishment is an extreme form of this and usually done to someone that actually deserves it. Also compare Plague of Good Fortune. Compare Unishment, where the "curse" turns out to be something that the character actually enjoys or wanted all along.

See also the inverse, Blessed with Suck, where the ability given is supposed to be good, but isn't. Compare I Just Want to Be Normal (where "cursed with awesome" is taken in a different context). Contrast Super Loser. May result in a Curse Is Foiled Again or Living Forever Is Awesome. Both this and Blessed with Suck may connect with Muse Abuse. If a character actually gets over it by refusing to be tormented any longer by the downsides of their "curse", they usually result in a case of Sweet and Sour Grapes; as the "curse" is merely their own displeasure at their condition, then by moving past it they become purely Awesome.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • While it also goes to show some of the really gruesome downsides of immortality, Baccano!! explicitly lampshades its Cursed With Awesome status: discovering that most of the Martillo and Gandor family gangsters mistook the two bottles of the elixir of life for some celebratory wine, Maiza attempts to apologize for dragging them into "the harshness of having to live for eternity." Their response is summarily summed up as, "Are you kidding? This is awesome." Considering the title of the episode ("Both those who are immortal and those who are not enjoy life equally"), it doesn't look like they're meant to be proven wrong.
  • The god of the Bakugan, Code Eve, decided to imprison Emperor Barodius in a suit of armor created from his own evil and seal him away in an alternate dimension for eternity for trying to destroy the peaceful planet of Neathia. This ultimately made him stronger than before. However, in her defense, Code Eve wasn't aware of the Psychic Link that Barodius had to Dan which let him become strong enough to break free. If it weren't for that, it'd probably have been an And I Must Scream fate.
  • Bleach:
    • Tousen claims that Komamura's Zanpakutou has a huge weakness because damaging the Zanpakutou automatically damages Komamura. Later on, Mayuri Kurotsuchi confirms that it's true that this is the Achilles' Heel of Komamura's Bankai, but it also gives Komamura an advantage over other Bankai-users: his Zanpakutou can be fully restored EVEN IF it breaks while in Bankai. It's just a matter of his own wounds healing, and his Bankai will heal with them. For any other Zanpakutou, damage taken while in Bankai is permanent—and reduces the wielder's raw power permanently as well.
    • The Hell Verse movie features the Togabito Kokuto, who is like any other Togabito chained to hell. However, despite wanting to get free from his chains, Kokuto uses his chains as weapons, offensively and especially defensively. And since the chains are invisible for the most time, his usage of the chains is unpredictable.
  • In Code Geass:
    • Suzaku is Blessed with Suck in the form of the Geass command "live", which subverts his Death Seeker mindset by forcing him to survive by any means necessary whenever his life is actually in danger. This is flipped in Turn 22, when Suzaku has decided to use the command to make himself a better fighter using its effects in his favor.
    • Nunnally too. While she's blind, that also serves as Plot Armor against Lelouch's Geass which requires eye contact (her eyes are permanently closed)... When Charles' Geass loses effect on her in the last episode and she regains vision, Lelouch instantly Geasses her into giving up the FLEIJA controls.
  • The heroines of Coppelion are genetically-engineered humans with various forms of Cloning Blues, and many normal humans wax poetically on their tragic fate of being "puppets." This is hard to rationalize because they're exactly like normal humans, except they're immune to radiation, and many of them have additional powers like super-strength or super-animal-taming. They work for the military organization that created them, but they're treated with the same respect as normal human employees and they get to go on heroic rescue missions. Where's the downside? Courtesy of Clone Degeneration, they're expected to suddenly drop dead around age twenty.
  • Allen Walker from D.Gray-Man was born with a deformed left arm that made his parents abandon him. After his adopted father died, Allen unknowingly had the Millennium Earl turn him into an Akuma, who then cut Allen's left eye and cursed him. Allen's arm can turn into an incredible weapon for destroying Akuma, and his left eye can see the soul bound to them, making him the only person on the planet who can tell which "people" in a crowd are Akuma. A few other Exorcists are Cursed With Awesome too, particularly Krory (who was bitten by a plant and started drinking the blood of what he thought were humans at first) and Miranda (a perpetual loser who can now stop time). Miranda started as full-fledged Blessed with Suck until she was able to control it, though.
    • Remember, though, that when Lavi briefly saw an Akuma the way Allen always does, he declared it to be horrific and said he'd rather be looking over his shoulder all the time than have to deal with that. And when Allen sees whatever the soul of a level 4 Akuma has become, he immediately vomits in disgust.
      • On the other hand, something else that Allen can see that no other exorcist can is the souls bound to the Akuma being released when the Akuma is destroyed. To everyone else, the Akuma can easily be seen as simply monsters that need to be destroyed, but Allen gets a truer idea of what's really at stake.
  • Most of the Contractors in Darker Than Black are either Blessed with Suck or Cursed With Awesome, largely depending on their remuneration. April can cause rainstorms and absolutely loves her remuneration (drinking beer). Louis, on the other hand, has gravity powers but has to break his fingers every time he uses them.
    • And then there's Wei. His power is to destroy things using his blood, and his remuneration is to cut himself, which he'd have to do anyway to use his powers. He might as well not have to pay a price, like the unabashedly Cursed With Awesome protagonist.
  • In Darwin's Game, Suzune Hiiragi absolutely hates her feral Sigil because it gives her cat-ears and a tail. The Sigil gives her the senses of a feral, meaning that she is faster than normal; stronger than she ever was before and managed to use a narwhal-like horn to sense an opponent from afar, despite having been blinded earlier. Oh, it also healed her heart condition, leaving her completely healthy and not in need of an expensive surgery.
  • In Devilman Lady, Jun turns into a female Devilman, which grants her some badass superpowers. Unfortunately, due to the high tendency for Devilman to go Ax-Crazy Always Chaotic Evil, her powers have her nearly constantly suspected of going evil to the point even her allies are ready to turn on her at a moments notice, and even though she's one of the very few of her kind able to retain most to all of her humanity and remains one of the most moral characters in the Crapsack World that is the series, even she feels the bestial urges try to overwhelm her from time to time.
  • In Fruits Basket, everyone that is cursed by the animals of the Chinese Zodiac hate transforming into another animal. Most people would find this very cool, as they get traits from their animal, like agility and strength. Justified in that the curse keeps them from being close to anyone of the opposite sex, aside from those that are also cursed by the Zodiac.
    • Also, pity the poor sod who is cursed with the spirit of the cat...
    • That's probably the reason the author stopped displaying the "animal control" power.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist:
    • Al is an animated suit of armor and can't experience many of the simple pleasures that others take for granted, which does suck. Still, he has limitless stamina, far greater strength than he had as a human, and is impervious to pain. This was even used as a plot point in a chapter of the manga since he was the only person able to brave a blizzard because he couldn't feel cold or run out of energy. We find out later, however, that souls can't be permanently bound to objects, and that Al has a limited amount of time left before he separates from the armor and, having no body to go back to, presumably dies.
    • Hohenheim is an immortal human-shaped philosopher's stone. Admittedly, it is an actual curse, since living forever and knowing that the sole reason for that is entirely because a whole country died, that you helped cause it, and that over half a million murdered souls are still in your body keeping you alive would be horrible. But on the flipside, the awesome part comes in because he can completely ignore the laws of alchemy when transmuting and is bullet-proof.
    • Played straight with the four ex-military chimera who join Ed's group in the second half of the series. Unlike the imperfect chimera seen earlier, they retain their human bodies, though they can transform into their animal forms at will to take full advantage of their abilities. Aside from having enhanced strength and heightened senses (plus a few additional powers depending on what animal they were spliced with), they're exactly the same as they were before. Some of them even state outright that they aren't interested in returning to their original state, as they recognize the advantages that their new bodies give them.
  • Gunnm: introduces us to DR. Desty Nova who likes to experiment with the brains of people who are almost dead and can get the craziest results out of them ranging from pure Body Horror to some great examples of this trope. There is Makaku who is an all kinds of creepy monster that eats brains and steals powerful cyborg bodies to terrorize people with. Which is exactly what he wants since no one ever even noticed his existence. Jasagun is a motorballer who got his brain fixed by Nova after a crash that would normally have been fatal. He only has a few years to live but in the mean time he can be the unbeatable emperor of motorball since his brain developed some truly God-like fighting skills. And then there is Zapan who got humiliated by Alita so badly he only wanted power so he could kill her. And that is exactly what he got an infinite supply of even though the berserker body would inevitably consume him in the long run.
  • In The Hating Girl, the arrow through Asumi's head has caused her a lot of grief and pain (both emotional and physical), but is surprisingly useful at times. It's been used to reflect light, open things, and even saved her life once when she fell off the top of the school but was left hanging from the wall by the arrow.
  • In High School D×D, this is immediately noted In-Universe and capitalized on. In order to access a Super Mode and have any chance of winning an Engagement Challenge he's about to throw down for, Issei has to sacrifice his left arm and have a dragon one grafted on in its place. Dragons aren't devils, and he immediately realizes this means he can now hold holy artifacts in his left hand and packs appropriately. After the Super Mode fails, it's the "cost" that facilitates him delivering a incredibly satisfying No-Holds-Barred Beatdown.
  • InuYasha features Miroku, who is cursed by the series' Big Bad with the Wind Tunnel - essentially a gaping black hole in his hand that sucks in everything in front of it with phenomenal force. Eventually, we're told, it will rupture and draw himself in without warning, along with any friends or loved ones that might be nearby... but until then, he's willing and able to use it as a superweapon against his nemesis. Also subverted, since Naraku unsurprisingly comes up with a way to neutralize it via "hell bees" that can seriously poison Miroku if sucked into the Wind Tunnel, preventing it from becoming a Story-Breaker Power, and by the risk Miroku takes when using the Wind Tunnel on foes wielding sharp-edged weapons (or limbs); one episode had the edge of the Wind Tunnel get cut while sucking in a mantis demon, causing it to begin widening faster than it was supposed to.
  • Subverted beautifully in Kajika, where young Kajika appears to have an awesome curse grants him superhuman speed, strength, and toughness while giving him many special powers. Despite this, he works endlessly hard to break this horrible curse. Why, you ask? Because it's a downgrade from his normal form, which is even more powerful.
  • Magical Project S: Sammy complains of being a magical girl because she has a lame outfit; this despite having reality-bending powers. Misao complains about having to transform into Pixy Misa (granted, it was an evil personality). However, at the end, both learn to enjoy their abilities.
  • Mahou Sensei Negima! has Setsuna, a half-Tengu demon girl with albinism. This made tengu "Bird Tribe" demons shun her as "unlucky" since she has... wait for it... white wings. Her friends think this is awesome. It's hinted that she's never shown anyone her wings, until the Kyoto trip... which makes a certain amount of sense: if you had a trait that had caused your own family to exile you, you'd try to hide it at all costs, right?
  • Mahou Shoujo Nante Mou Ii Desu Kara has this as more or less its central premisenote . Main character Yuzuka Hanami is able to transform into a Magical Girl with the ability to control water. The catch? Her magical girl outfit is a swimsuit. While it does serve a practical purpose - it stops her from getting wet while she's using her powers - Yuzuka finds it highly embarrassing and doesn't like transforming.
  • Mai-HiME has a subversion. In most cases, the HiME really have some awesome powers, but some act like they are curses even before the real downsides come to light. However, once the truth is exposed, it's more of a case of Blessed with Suck... or just Cursed With Suck.
  • Murasakiiro no Qualia has this in the form of Hatou's cellphone arm. She soon finds out she can use it to speak to parallel versions of herself. Plus, it also functions like a regular cellphone. However, she is the phone's battery and overuse leaves her physically drained. She keeps sugary snacks on hand after she loses two pounds in one day from making too many calls.
  • Nabari no Ou: Rokujou Miharu was born with the ultimate ninja technique, the shinrabanshou, which basically gives you control over all the forces of nature plus the ability to learn complex ninjutsu arts in a snap...and he wants nothing to do with it. He doesn't believe in ninjas, he doesn't want to be a ninja, he definitely doesn't want to be the super high poobah of all ninjadom, and he wishes the whole deal would just go away and leave him alone. Which causes his mentor to do a lot of facepalming, since the only apparent drawbacks of being the shinrabanshou holder are that (1) every clan wants to recruit you and (2) everyone, but everyone, has a favor to ask.
    • Unless you're watching the anime, in which case it has less and less of an impact on the plot the more of its powers are unlocked.
  • In Naruto, the character is the "can" part of Sealed Evil in a Can because he houses a malevolent spirit inside him, the Nine-tailed Fox. Said spirit becomes the major reason for his extreme powers because its huge stock of Applied Phlebotinum supplies the chakra energy to all his strongest attacks (and having the Nine-Tails' chakra flowing through him since birth has also strengthened Naruto's own natural chakra, boosting his power even when he's not directly drawing from the beast). Supposedly, the village hates him for it, but most of the named characters (in a series with plenty) don't seem to mind. Oh, and he stops angsting about the beast after the first episode. However, the circumstances did cost him growing up without a family (or many friends), being considered a village pariah and having an organization of dangerous criminals after him by the age 12.
    • Most of the other hosts aren't as lucky: Gaara was ostracized even more from his village while the thing tried to take over his mind when he slept (so he doesn't) and hosts 2-7 were all killed by Akatsuki. Most of the Jinchuuriki were made to be like superweapons, so how they're viewed varies on the village. However, the 8-Tailed Ox host, Killer Bee, has it even better than Naruto: he's able to control his beast and use it however he wants (that might have been something he needed to learn how to do), has no apparently risk of it getting out (even if he uses its full power), and his village actually respects him. It helps in Killer Bee's case that the Eight-Tails is considerably more mellow than the Kyuubi. The Kyuubi is constantly threatening to kill Naruto; the Eight-Tails just occasionally insults Killer Bee. So while Naruto might have gotten off a bit easier, a consistent reminder (big example with Gaara's initial personality when being introduced) was that Naruto could've become a much darker person.
    • Naruto now has control of Kurama (the Kyubi), and later on, he managed to befriend it in the same way Bee did, making him an aloof Tsundere who doesn't need to be restrained anymore, lending Naruto the fullest extent of his power.
  • Shinji Ikari from Neon Genesis Evangelion gets to pilot a Humongous Mecha and hang out with the hottest girls at his school, who also pilot said Humongous Mecha. Evangelion being what it is, it becomes evident what kind of stress comes with fighting monsters without any prior training. That said, that stress is one of his lesser psychological problems.
    • A pair of Shinji's classmates certainly think Shinji is Cursed With Awesome. And then one of them is brought into the project himself. It ... doesn't go well.
  • One Piece:
    • Every Devil Fruit curses the eater with a total inability to swim or, indeed, function at all in water. At the same time, it gives the eater amazing superhuman powers that far outweigh the downsides. Except for a few of them.
    • Word of God says that there are lots of Devil Fruits which either grant powers that are totally useless, or carry a negative side effect so harsh that they essentially ruin the user's life. Since there's no way to reverse the effects, and most fruits' powers are unknown until after you eat them (unless you happen to have access to Vegapunk's catalog of Devil Fruits...and if you're not high-ranking World Government agent, you don't), it makes eating a fruit into a huge gamble. How badly do you want to be cursed with awesome?
    • Another thing to note is that a Devil Fruit doesn't get stronger, the user gets more imaginative, which makes the "cursed" part eclipsing the "awesome" part a fault of the user more than anything. Brook is a perfect example, to his knowledge his fruit let him revive from being dead, once. Post time skip he's learned to bend the rules on what "power over the soul" means to the point he can coat his sword in the cold flames of hell as his deadliest attack.
    • Played straight with Buggy, who complained when he accidentally got the power of Bara Bara no Mi, making him immune to all sharp blades in a world where there are skilled swordsmen loitering around in every direction. He's completely mastered his powers, but still bemoans them and curses Shanks over it because he was an awesome swimmer before he became an anchor. It blew his plans to sell the fruit and claim a valuable treasure hidden underwater.
    • in an aversion of the usual, many would consider being invulnerabe to damage and death to be great, unless you're Kaido so what was supposed to be a cursed with awesome is a very real case of Blessed with Suck for him
  • Saitama, the titular One-Punch Man, is strong enough to defeat any of his enemies with one punch, fast enough to create afterimages, can see things moving at supersonic speeds, and is almost impervious to harm. He's also become bored and depressed with his life, since all he wants is a good fight and there's nobody that can challenge him. When the Subterraneans emerge, destroying the city and slaughtering most of mankind, Saitama actually feels happy and alive for the first time in years now that he can finally has worthy opponents. Then his alarm goes off, and he meets the real Subterraneans, who he effortlessly pulverizes just like all his previous foes.
  • Ashitaka in Princess Mononoke gets cursed by a boar demon, which manifests itself in a gradually increasing nasty-looking scar which will eventually kill him, and turn him into a demon. (He comes pretty close to the deadline). The curse also grants him awesome powers, like super strength, which comes in very handy among all the hostility he gets faced with.
  • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Puella Magi tend to consider themselves no longer human when they learn that the reason they can improve their physical abilities with magic is because their soul is inside their Transformation Trinket and controlling their body remotely. This revelation actually plunges Sayaka into a horrifying downward spiral. Make no mistake, being a Puella Magi can genuinely be considered as being Blessed with Suck, but this is not the worst part of it, and Kyubey notes that if it weren't for Soul Gems, the girls would not be able to fight as the pain from wounds would be too unbearable.
    • As Kyubey points out, it's not a rational response, but it is understandable given that they've basically been turned into liches.
  • Ranma ½. While it's never officially stated that Ranma Saotome has some sort of "May You Live In Interesting Times" curse on him, it's a fair assumption to make in order to explain his status as a Weirdness Magnet. However, Ranma himself has no complaints about this curse, at least in abstract- it draws strong (if weird) martial arts challengers and beautiful girls to him like flies to honey. He complains when they personally get out of hand, but not about the situation itself. Many fans consider his Nyanniichuan curse to be a case of Cursed With Awesome too, but to Ranma it's more a case of Blessed with Suck.
    • It's implied that at least a few Jusenkyo springs can bestow this as well. Pantyhose Taro fell into a spring where a yeti that was riding an ox while carrying a crane and an eel drowned, and consequently transforms into a sort of giant flying minotaur when he gets wet. Perhaps because of this curse's mixed up nature, he's later able to assimilate a Drowned Octopus curse for Combat Tentacles. A character named Rouge fell into a Spring of Drowned Ashura, becoming a demon/goddess with three faces and six arms, a form in which she can fly, breathe fire, and hurl lightning bolts (as long as she has what she needs to keep at bay the killer backache stemming from having six arms).
  • Played straight in Slayers, with Zelgadis Greywords. His great-grandfather, under the influence of a fragment of the world's ultimate Big Bad, cursed him into becoming a chimera: one-third golem, one-third blow demon, one-third human. This gives him Nigh-Invulnerability, superior reserves of magical energy, greatly augmented strength and speed, a much lower requirement for food, and tremendous stamina. However, he also has blue stone skin, rocky protrusions (which look vaguely like scales) all over his body, and weighs more than some boulders. Despite all the awesome powers, though, he just wants to be human again.
    • Even though Zelgadis spends most of the series trying to find a cure to his affliction, this doesn't stop him from taking advantage of his powers every chance he gets.
      • It doesn't stop everyone else from taking advantage of his powers either. Lina once used him as an anchor, for crying out loud.
    • Zelgadis actually admits at one point that he wouldn't mind his "curse" if Rezo hadn't shown him what he was really like by casting it. Until Rezo transformed him, Zelgadis saw him pretty much the same as everyone else did: as an exceptionally kind, powerful sorcerer who made miracles wherever he went. Rezo's experimenting on Zelgadis showed him that that was all a mask, and that he would do anything, to anybody, to cure his eyes.
    • Zelgadis also doesn't seem to mind the reaction of people to his appearance. While it's possible his misanthropy is a result of his appearance, he is often times called horrible things from misconceptions based on his appearance and actions, and he seems to find it at least somewhat amusing.
    Zelgadis: Heartless sorcerer swordsman?! ...Hmm... I think I like that.
  • The "yaka" in Sola closely resemble vampires minus the need for blood: immortality, super strength and agility, regeneration, ability to resurrect people by turning them, and sometimes other awesome unique powers, with only the vampire-like extreme weakness to direct sunlight (and the 'curse' of immortality) as a drawback. Another character has a unique body that overcomes even that, but he spends all his time angsting over not being a real boy. The ending highlights how unappreciated these abilities are by those who have them.
  • Jun in Special A laments about his problem with girls, which explains why he stays away from relationships. When Sakura kisses him, he wakes up - Turns out his shameful secret is that he's got The Casanova Split Personality inside him. The split personality realizes how awesome this is, but the "outer" Jun fails to see this.
  • Tenchi Muyo! GXP plays with this trope. Protagonist Seina Yamada is cursed to be a Weirdness Magnet, with his mere presence causing accidents to harm himself and anyone else in the general area. His curse seems to reach new heights when he gets shanghaied into the Galaxy Police, and attracts a horde of space pirates almost as soon as he leaves orbit. But when he's rescued, it's brought to his attention that his curse led to one of the biggest blows against piracy in history — and he becomes determined to take the chance to have his luck serve a purpose for a change. Of course, the curse also leads to an Unwanted Harem... 'nuff said.
  • Pretty much anyone who is an Accidental Pervert on a regular basis, particularly if they have an Unwanted Harem. Probably the most outrageous example is Rito Yuuki of To Love-Ru, known as the "God of Falling" for his seemingly supernatural ability to trip and end up with his face in a girl's cleavage or crotch, somehow removing their clothes, or both.
    • Seemingly, nothing. The resident Omnidisciplinary Scientist (who is also a gorgeous woman) tests it and notes that a) the "curse" appears to be the will of the universe and b) his constant accidental groping has given him an ungodly talent at it, and any girl he used it on would fall for him. Including her.
  • In Toriko, Midora's curse is an insatiable appetite due to his futile attempts to eat away the pain of causing the death of one of the only people he ever loved. His ultimate attack is fueled by this appetite, giving him an "Instant Death" Radius.
  • Ataru Moroboshi of Urusei Yatsura seesaws somewhere between this and Blessed with Suck in regards his Accidental Marriage to Cute Monster Girl Lum. On the one hand, she is a beautiful alien princess who genuinely does love him and sees his better qualities, and a lot of his protestations seem to be rooted in his being a particularly lustful example of the Casanova Wannabe who doesn't seem to realise how lucky he is. On the other hand, Lum does have her legitimate bad points, including having a bad temper and little tolerance for jealousy, being somewhat ditzy, enjoying higher levels of food spice than humans are comfortable with, and, of course, her ability to generate electricity... not only does she use this to discipline him when he goes skirt-chasing, but she sometimes loses control of this when trying to cuddle him, giving him a painful shock (particularly early on, when she is the unofficial villain). And, on the meta-level, there's the fact he was originally supposed to marry Shinobu Miyake (who ended up crushing on Mendou after he was first introduced, then hooking up with Inaba, anyway), until Lum became the Ensemble Dark Horse.
  • In Unlimited Fafnir, the girls with a D marking on their body, and Yuu, the main hero, can summon things using anti-matter, much like the dragons. Unfortunately they're also viewed with some skepticism and kept isolated from normal humans while learning to use their power for the good of humanity in stopping dragon attacks.
  • In Witchblade Masane tries to remove or destroy the eponymous implant / symbiont... that is, docile piece of jewellery transforming her at will into a Stripperiffic death machine capable of ripping tanks apart and surviving its explosion. Naturally, the poor thing deigns to notice these efforts only when she's about to hurt herself, instantly wrecks an offending power tool and returns to its nap.
    • Note that there are implications in the anime that it is slowly destroying her.
  • In ×××HOLiC, Watanuki constantly bemoans the fact that he is always stuck with Domeki Because Destiny Says So. Considering that Domeki has saved him from falling to his death (badly injuring his arm in the process), spent ten hours in the rain trying to pull him away from the brink of Hell, saved him from getting mauled by a possessed girl and her box cutter, gave his blood to save his life, and keeps him from being mauled by spirits on a daily basis just by being around him, you would think Watanuki would be a little more grateful — even if he does have to make Domeki lunch once in a while.
  • In Re:CREATORS, Yuuya's curse manifests in the form of a Jojo-esque (or Shaman King-esque) spirit entity that gives him supernatural combat prowess and can be invoked seemingly at will. We're never shown any downsides of this.

    Comic Books 
  • Spider-Man would be the trope namer if he had any cool catchphrase that related. Peter Parker is a genius, incredibly powerful (at least compared to us muggles), a successful photographer—who even published a book of Spider-Man photos — and a college student. Despite his poverty, he is able to provide for himself—including crime-fighting gadgets like web-shooters, webbing and costumes—his aged aunt and his supermodel wife. Remember? He bagged a chick so hot she should be using dorks like him as a paperweight. Not to mention Gwen Stacey, Betty Brant, Liz Allen, the Black Cat, Deb Whitman...
    • This is ultimately Deconstructed during the Superior Spider-Man saga. Otto Octavius, having hijacked'd Peter's body, uses it to be a superior Spidey. However, when the Green Goblin opts to bring everything down around his ears, he comes to realize that Peter purposesly stops himself from using his Awesome because of things like this.
  • Subverted with The Juggernaut. Those who are bestowed with the power of Cyttorak through his crimson gem are also compelled to do evil, regardless of their previous nature. However, Cain Marko is a natural sociopath, and doesn't need much prodding. When Cain tried to turn over a new leaf and joined the X-Men, Cyttorak was very unhappy with this development. Thus, Cain's power was greatly reduced and he was pushed into returning to a life of evil to regain the lost power.
  • In its early history, the X-Men themselves tended to have attractive heroes who felt awkward about their powers, while villains who reveled in their powers were ugly. This trend was reduced with the introduction of the Morlocks, who were bizarre but kind, plus the general escalating public fear of mutants because they could look just like anyone else.
    • The first X-Men movie in many ways reflected this; the heroes were all extremely gorgeous people with cool powers played by people like Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry and James Marsden, whilst the bad guys - with the notable exception of Ian McKellen - were all freaks. The later movies began to balance this out a bit more with the inclusion of characters such as Nightcrawler. Other X-Men films, such as First Class imply a number of evil mutants become evil because they're ugly; visible mutations make them bigger targets for prejudice, which in turn makes them more cynical and bitter toward humans.
      • Also, some of the mutants who've wished to be cured over the years (and over the adaptations) have been mutants who looked human and didn't suffer from any lack of control.
    • The X-man Beak became an interesting, fairly literal example. At first, he was simply Blessed with Suck since his only mutant power was looking like a giant plucked chicken. Than the Exiles' boss The Timebroker decides to draft Beak onto the team, and forcibly yank him away from his home reality. Why? Because Beak will supposedly save The Multiverse some day. Essentially, the Timebroker just decided to hand Beak a great responsibility while Beak just wanted his life back, literally cursing him with awesomeness. Of course, the Timebroker turned out to be right when Beak found a way to defeat Hyperion.
    • This point's been lampooned in Toyfare's Twisted Toyfare Theater comic, with a villain exclaiming "rich teenagers with superpowers? Yeah, I WISH I had your problems!"
    • Inverted with recent issues, especially after M-Day which de-powered almost all the mutants. There is, for example, a home dedicated to helping mutants adjust to life without powers. One resident is a former telekinetic who used to use his powers for construction work.
    • During the CinemaSins video of X-Men: Days of Future Past, Jeremy finally has had enough of Mystique claiming humans wouldn't find her attractive in her normal form: a nude, busty blue Action Girl. He retorts it would be almost impossible for a straight man not to be turned on by her.
  • Deadpool was cursed by Loki to have Tom Cruise's face until his father forgave him. Deadpool was not happy at all. Remember Deadpool is ugly!
    • Course, this was before Tom Cruise's name became a dirty word. Who knows? Mebbe Deadpool can see into the future too?
    • Deadpool gets this again, in a sort of subversion. In Deadpool #64, Thanos curses him with immortality. Where's the curse in that? Well, they both love Death, so Deadpool would actually be pretty happy being killable. Torn between Cursed With Awesome and Blessed with Suck - the curse only won out because that was Thanos's original intention.
      • Ironically enough, Thanos receives the same curse in The Thanos Imperative, and he goes completely omnicidally insane as a result.
  • Thor's foe the Flame believes he is horrendously ugly in addition to having superstrength, fire control abilities, indestructible armour and a BFS. Of course, he is horrendously ugly by fire demon standards which makes him extremely handsome by human (or Asgardian) standards, but the Flame refuses to believe this.
  • The Thing in Fantastic Four. Super-strong & nigh invulnerable. Sure he's not the best looking guy around, but despite this he's had several women attracted to him, Alicia Masters, Thundra, the second Miss Marvel, heck even Tigra seemed interested in him. Boo-hoo, poor Ben.
    • Although, this is pretty heavily subverted now. Ben doesn't hate his looks and is actually quite happy to be the "Ever-lovin' Blue-Eyed Thing", as it's brought him great success and many new friends.
    • The most irrational thing he complained about was how he thought the first of these women would flee him if she were not blind. Dude, she has a pretty good idea that you are not normal-looking because your skin feels more like an animate pile of rocks than anything outwardly human.
    • In fact, Alicia played a very big factor in him as a character early on. He doubted that she would fall for "plain old Ben" because she hadn't met him before he became the Thing, and tried very hard to resist his desire to become human again.
      • The Thing goes back and forth on the issue usually presenting himself as someone who has adjusted to the condition and enjoys the benefits, but sometimes something happens to remind him that not everybody accepts him.
    • The big issue comes from the fact that he inadvertably causes damage to structures around him. Buildings would have to be well-reinforced to support him and he probably wouldn't be able to take stairs or elevators. His fingers are too big and powerful to use normal, everyday things like telephones or cups, and everything in the Baxter Building had to be Thing-proofed just so he'd be able to live there. In terms of living his day-to-day life he's essentially handicapped.
    • The Ultimate Universe version of the Thing has his condition played for full angst value but this is a younger version of the character. Aside from looking like a monster, he laments that he can't even figure out how to kill himself because he's too tough.
  • Thunderfoot, a homage to the character of Watership Down, is cursed in the Vertigo comic book series Fables by a dark magician hare to change into a horrendous, disgusting form—that of a human—until he gets the love of a pretty doe (female hare). Actually, Thunderfoot is the most awesome lad the readers may have seen. Ever. But his attempts to woo lady hares are constantly thwarted by their fearful cries of "MONSTER! Monster!"
  • Halloween Man, the eponymous hero of Drew Edwards' indie comic, is a pretty good example; though Solomon Hitch's "origin story" disfigured half his face and left him with a skeletal hand, he gains superhuman strength and agility, virtual immortality, and even vague psychic powers. In addition, his wealthy, attractive, and brilliant girlfriend Lucy and demigod best friend Ron (son of Dionysus) accept him without hesitation, even if many of the other, more "mainstream" heroes of Solar City do not. Subverted to an extent, as Halloween Man is still one of the undead and needs to gruesomely consume fresh organs from other monsters to maintain himself (rather than reverting to eating humans). It is also hinted that in at least some future time lines he flips to the dark side anyway, becoming a Jason Voorhees type slasher.
  • Hellboy:
    • Johann Krauss and his wife died during the Chengdou disaster; fortunately he was in the "Astral Plane" at the time. Now he's an effectively immortal cloud of mist, as long as he can find an empty "body" to inhabit. The movie shows him pondering the difference between him and clockwork Implacable Man Kroenen.
    • Abe Sapien was a human scientist who, while exploring an undersea ruin in the 1800s, became touched by an Eldritch Abomination after finding a mysterious "egg" that turned him into a fishman. Subverted in that he doesn't feel cursed. Usually.
  • In the comic Timespirits, Our Heroes encounter a dinosaur-descended space pirate who has supernatural luck. She can never fail to do anything she tries. And when Our Heroes offer to remove the "Curse of Success" she jumps at the chance. Because, as she puts it, "I am so incredibly bored!". So she gets her luck extracted and has the ordinary chance of success and failure of anyone else - which she considers a blessing.
  • This certainly happens to Watchmen's Dr. Manhattan. Being the only person with god-like powers in the entire known universe is a plus. But he lost his humanity, not really caring about anything but science. On the other hand, he doesn't care.
  • Played with in Sillage. You would think that in a setting where everyone but the protagonist has psychic powers, to the point that she was not recognized as a person at first, might be a bad thing. Turns out it means she's an excellent spy/special agent, because she cannot be psychically detected like everyone else.
  • In All-Star Superman, Lex Luthor endangers a space flight, forcing Superman to fly too close to the sun in the process of rescuing them. The damage to his body leaves him with one year to live. On the upside, it boosts his powers and intelligence, and renders him immune to kryptonite, which helps him deal with all his final year's problems.
    • Of course, in the long run he may wind up considering this to be the best thing that ever happens to him. It's all but outright stated that this version of Superman goes on to become Superman Prime of DC One Million, ensuring he eventually physically resurrects as nothing short of a god, living until at least the year 85200 and resurrecting Lois Lane to be as powerful and long-lived as him, so they can be together forever. Also, he LIVES IN THE GOD DAMNED SUN.
  • Empowered's suit usually is more Blessed with Suck, but the fact it supercharges her orgasms? Gee, what a burden.
  • For most folks who gain powers via Gamma radiation like the Hulk the Abomination, and General Ross, it's the opposite Trope but there are exceptions:
    • The page picture's subject, She-Hulk, started out as Bruce Banner's mousy cousin Jennifer Walters who transformed after being given a blood transfusion from Dr. Banner. She went from a shy, rather nebbish girl into... well, She-Hulk. Eventually, writers realized there weren't any real downsides to it, and she hasn't complained about the situation in years. (The trick is that, as the name implies, they were trying to make a Distaff Counterpart to the Incredible Hulk - but while Bruce Banner turns into a horrific, mindless force of destruction most of the time, Jennifer turns into a friendly, vivacious Amazon who is still mentally herself, just butch as fuck. Hard to see any downsides in that, especially since she didn't like who she used to be all that much to begin with.)
    • Lampshaded as early as the late-80s, when at the end of an issue, Mr. Fantastic sadly informs Jennifer that due to a burst of radiation she absorbed, she is now permanently stuck in her She-Hulk form. A couple of beat panels later she replies, "So, what's the bad news?"
    • Jen isn't the only one to benefit from gamma radiation. The Hulk's enemy the Leader was once nothing more than a janitor until an accident involving gamma radiation turned him into a super-genius with Psychic Powers. (He considered the green skin and enlarged, mutated cranium a very small price to pay.)
    • Doc Samson transformed himself using stored energy siphoned from the Hulk in an attempt to turn the Hulk back into Bruce Banner permanently. Considering that it changed him from a somewhat nebbishy scientist into someone with the physique of a Greek god, the fact that it also made his hair longer and green was unplanned, but overall he admits it's still a good deal for him.
    • Indeed, one theory about gamma radiation is that it transforms the victim into a physical embodiment of deeply repressed emotions. While the Hulk embodies the hidden rage that Bruce felt towards his abusive father, She-Hulk is a liberated, daring side of Jennifer that she had never been able to show before. Abomination is an unlovable bastard because Emil Blonsky is an unlovable bastard (or believes he is). Doc Sampson always wanted to be a paragon-style superhero, so that's what he turned into.
  • ROM and the other Spaceknights constantly bewail the loss of their humanity, even though they can still think, talk, feel, and do pretty well everything else humans can, while also having supercool cyborg armor, the ability to fly, virtual immortality, and, of course, survive attack by the Dire Wraiths.
    • Not being able to get out of their armor probably sucks pretty hard. For one thing, you couldn't have sex. Actually, do there really have to be any other reasons?
    • They also turned out to be right to bemoan their loss of humanity. A second generation of Space Knights was create which were more extremely transformed (and more powerful), and they all went Ax-Crazy and destroyed the rest of their race and the parts removed from all the Space Knights, preventing anyone from ever transforming them back.
  • Zig Zagged with werewolves in Werewolf by Night. At their creation, werewolves weren't "cursed" but merely given a useful ability; it later became a curse when the way to control those abilities got lost over time. So when Jack becomes a werewolf on his eighteenth birthday, it really is a curse: forced to painfully transform three times a month with no control. But when he finally does learn how to control it, he starts to enjoy the abilities it gives him, being able to use his werewolf form to do good. Unfortunately, the curse seems to have a way of striking back. You can transform any time you want? Your uncontrolled werewolf form during the full moons will become stronger and more violent. You're happy you won't have to change at all anymore, not even during the full moon? You'll lose the ability, and from now on you'll be forced to have visions of hell when you transform.
  • In the Astro City story "Lucky Girl," Hummingbird II discovers that her gods-granted powers are tainted with a curse that will eventually turn her into a real bird. She rejects an offer to be cured by having her powers removed, choosing instead to deal with her fate with the help of her Honorary Aunts.
  • As an Expy of Ben Grimm, above, Pig-Iron was transformed into a hulking steel monster. While it made him Nigh Invulnerable and gave him Super Strength, it also makes it utterly impossible for him to have a Secret Identity or live any kind of normal, non-superheroic life. It also resulted in his death from drowning, as unlike the other heroes he couldn't possibly swim. He would be resurrected by Grant Morrison to be a background character in Final Crisis.
  • Legends of the Dead Earth: In Superman Annual #8, the League of Supermen is made up of men and women who are empowered with just one of Superman's many Kryptonian abilities. Unfortunately, they can't shut them off. Shield is completely numb, See-Through has to wear lead shades to block his x-ray vision, Flyboy needs to be tethered when not consciously moving towards something, Pounder has to be fed like a baby, and Heat needs to let off excess heat energy every fifteen minutes or his insides burn up.

    Fan Works 
  • Axis Powers Hetalia fanfics Hakkōna and Kaitō Kokoro: Obake are creatures that can shapeshift into just about anything. Unfortunately, their powers made them feared by humans and massacred as a result with Kiku as the only survivor.
    Obake. A subcategory of Yōkai, supernatural creatures of Japanese Shinto myth. Obake are beings that can take on any shape, from an inanimate household object to the most ravenous of beasts. However, despite that, Obake can be of various species, possessing various base forms; cat, dog, monkey, even human are just some of them. Obake have generally lived in peace, respecting all those around them. Secluding themselves from people, they are one with nature, in perfect harmony with it and each other as they live through existences which aren't limited by the passing of time. Everything was perfect until that fateful day...
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist fanfic Build Your Wings on the Way Down, Ed is burdened by knowing the dark side of alchemy. But he now knows the ins and outs of alchemy and can do feats thought to be impossible by regular alchemists. He knows how to directly bargain with the Gate and what are the set prices and transactions for Equivalent Exchange.
  • The Child of Love: Shinji and Asuka's daughter Teri got her DNA altered when she was still a fetus, and she developed Psychic Powers and the ability to wield an energy barrier. She really does not like her powers, though, because she is afraid that people will think she is weird and will shun her out if they find out.
  • An interesting example occurs in the Project Dark Jade fic Shadows Awakening, Jade actually likes her new powers, and is only trying to remove them because of her Enemy Within/Superpowered Evil Side the Queen, who is slowly corrupting her.
  • Referred to by name in Shinji And Warhammer 40 K, when one of the characters comments that while people could live just fine without the super-powerful, chainsaw-wielding and fruit smoothie making Evas, the current situation of invading giant monsters more or less forces governments to keep them around to survive.
  • Wingfic (in which a character grows wings, wangsts about it and gets reassured by their partner) invariably causes Angst Dissonance because most readers think that having wings would be incredibly cool.
  • The Wise Prince protagonist in Dragon Age: The Crown of Thorns feels this way and even outright explains it when he and his elder brother Trian, who dies in Canon but is only presumed dead in this case, make peace with each other after the dwarven noble returns to Orzammar incognito, while the female human noble plays the leader. Having been clever enough to totally manipulate Bhelen and his lackeys by faking Trian's death and getting himself framed for it deliberately, he admits that he believes he would make a great king but his cleverness would rub off on all the conniving politicians and actually cause them to become even more subtle in their backhanded dealing, meaning that he'd upgrade the game of bloody politics that he wants to see shattered. Add to that the fact that history would cause people to assume that only brilliant leaders like him can do any good, which goes against how he wants to see some luminosity in Orzammar as a whole. He argues that Trian can break the game because he's capable of Obfuscating Stupidity so he can kickstart a chain reaction that would, in the long run, lead to a higher way of thinking. So, he feels he'd make a bad king in the current situation because he'd be too god at it. The answer Trian gave? "That... is just so incredibly stupid!" And this is all before a king is decided upon.
  • The Chronodata in Transcendence: Digital Curse stops Agumon from digivolving, but causes his natural form to grow much stronger. After having it for a certain amount of time, it allows him to evolve anyway, and into a form more powerful than any of his other evolutions. The only downside is that the change is his biology means he is capable of permanently dying in the digital world as well as the real one, and even then its power has saved him multiple times.
  • This is lampshaded and then kicked in the balls in Luminosity with this exchange.
    Edward: No, Bella, any of us would rather be human—
    Bella: What? Okay, Alice said that the three day initiation process or whatever it is is "not fun". I could buy that it is sufficiently not fun that you wish it hadn't happened to you, don't think it was worth it. It'd be a little hard to believe, but not impossible. But why in the world would you want to go back once you've already been through that part? I don't know how old the rest of you are, but you realize Alice would be dead by now, right? Humans generally don't live to be a hundred years old. Whatever it is she misses about being human, she wouldn't have it anymore anyway.
  • A repeated theme in Diaries of a Madman. Particularly so with Discord, but Nav, Celestia, and Luna also stand out.
  • In A Charmed Life Light angsts a bit over L and his father's assertion that Kira is cursed but later decides that if he is "cursed" than he couldn't have asked for a nicer curse to have.
  • In The Fire Bird Act I Fleur Delacour feels this way about her flawless Veela beauty and allure and male humans' resultant inability to see her for her inner qualities.
    • Actually a fairly common problem for Veela in Harry Potter fanfics; given an innate and nearly irresistible allure, veela find it almost impossible to find a partner that wants them for who they are rather than what they are.
  • The CSI / Charlie and the Chocolate Factory crossover fic Death By Chocolate shows how Violet Beaureguard benefited from the incident of the blueberry pie gum from the film section below - she became a contortionist of such skill that she became a star of Cirque de Soleil. Her mother wasn't too happy about it, though...
  • Prince Charming combines this trope with Blessed with Suck. Prince Adrien was blessed at birth with the gift of charm...which means that anyone who interacts with him is brainwashed into his devoted slave within minutes. He eventually summons the spirit of Misfortune to curse himself in hopes that Misfortune's curse can undo his blessing. While it works (albeit with a few side effects), the curse is still a curse. Which is a problem, since true love's kiss will break a curse...
  • In The Institute Saga, Rogue's powers mean that she cannot touch anyone who isn't a Kryptonian, until she finally gets a special bracelet.
  • In Hellsister Trilogy, it happens to Supergirl. More powers than she can keep track of, to the point that she is able to time-travel by just flying fast enough. Yet still she feels those powers mean she can't lead a normal life, and they work as a magnet for every would-be cosmic conquerer/eldritch abomination looking for a pick or heroes needing to be saved from said cosmic conqueror/eldritch abomination.
    Mentally, she kicked herself. All this incredible power, she thought. The ability to fly faster than light, to exist in the vacuum of space, to pierce the time barrier and reappear whenever she wanted to, and most of the time she took that for granted. No wonder that so often, life was stupid, dull, and boring to her.
    No wonder that she'd never really managed to fully give her heart, or her body, to anyone yet. How many potential mates could understand the power and needs of a Kryptonian?
  • Atonement has Ruin. Her power can do some incredible damage and one use is enough to end most battles- but if she makes any sound outside of combat, she'll inadvertently kill everyone around her.
  • Strikers 89 has Merlin. She can't fly Strikers like a normal witch, but she can generate shields, guide missiles, and power up the gun of the plane she's in. She can also talk to machines.
  • Young Justice: Darkness Falls has Cyborg, who does NOT like his mechanized body, even though he is now a one-man army capable of using Apokolips weaponry.

    Films — Animated 
  • Beauty and the Beast: Sure, not being able to go outside of your castle without a mob of angry villagers trying to kill you sucks. And spending so many years locked up inside would surely start to grate the nerves. Plus you'll have to live with the knowledge that dozens, perhaps hundreds of your servants have been turned into household objects because of your jerkassery. But still there are a million cool things a massive gorilla-buffalo-boar-bear-wolf hybrid with amazing strength and agility can do.
  • In Monsters vs. Aliens, the main character starts off believing that being turned into a giantess is a case of Blessed with Suck. However, by the end of the movie she has accepted her size, and uses her powers for good.
  • Hoodwinked has Japeth, this mountain goat who lives in a shack in the middle of nowhere. When Red finds him on the porch, he's strumming on a banjo:
    Red Puckett: I'm looking for Granny Puckett's house?
    Japeth the Goat: [singing] Graaaaaaaanneeee Puckeeeet...
    Red Puckett: Could you stop singing for one moment?
    Japeth the Goat: [singing] No I can't, wish I could, but a mountain witch done put a spell on me, 37 years agoooooooo, and now I gotta sing every thing I saaaaaaaaayyyyyy...
    Red Puckett: Everything?
    Japeth the Goat: [speaking] That's right.
    Red Puckett: You just talked! Just now!
    Japeth the Goat: Oh, did I? [singing] Did I? Dididididodadidididoooo... [Red gives a pissed off Aside Glance to the camera]
    • A moment later, lampshaded:
      Red Puckett: Mr. Goat, my granny's in trouble! I've got to find a way around the mountain, fast!
      Japeth: [singing]' Well you came to the right goat! [pops off his rocking horns]''
      Red Puckett: Oh, good. More singing.
  • Odette in The Swan Princess turns into a swan every day (but can regain her human form as long as she's on the lake when the moon rises). Being a swan does allow her to actually escape from her prison undetected and try to find help - as well as being pretty handy for combat. She's able to do many things she couldn't do as a human. It's sort of acknowledged in the first sequel - she's permanently a human but voluntarily changes herself into a swan, recognising that it has advantages and that her husband needs help.
  • In Penguins of Madagascar, the penguins waste no time putting their horribly mutated bodies to good use in the final battle, their misshapen limbs making excellent bludgeoning weapons.
  • Lampshaded by producer Phil Lord when discussing Batman's life in The LEGO Batman Movie.
    Lord: "Wah, I’m so rich and handsome, and women like me, and I’ve got a Maclaren! Something about my parents!"
  • Elsa from the Disney movie Frozen is able to project ice and snow. The curse portion comes from the fact that she can't control it, but when she's not constantly worrying about hurting people (and when she's finally accepted by her kingdom at the end) it goes straight back into awesome.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Pirates of the Caribbean:
  • The Mummy Trilogy:
    • The 1999 version of The Mummy. Okay, Imhotep got eaten alive by scarabs and had to slumber for a few thousand years, but once released he became an immortal, invincible badass. And, the people who cursed him, and their descendants, were then forced to spend those thousands of years guarding his tomb, waging war on anyone who tried to open it, to prevent the badass from coming out. They thought the Egyptian afterlife was too good for him, but really, it would have been much easier to just kill him. The protagonists even directly state "cursing people just seems to make them stronger, why not just kill them?"
    • In The Mummy Returns, the Scorpion King is cursed to serve the god Anubis for eternity. And as part of this curse, he becomes a humanoid scorpion, only killable by a certain weapon, and 5000 years later is set to revive and conquer the world unless stopped.
    • This was averted in The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. The Emperor already had superpowers while he was alive, the curse just turned him into a terracotta corpse.
  • The main character from Shallow Hal is hypnotized to see a person's inner self. This means that every woman worth hitting on also looks like a supermodel.
  • The premise for Phenomenon. John Travolta's character gains extraordinary mental powers as well as telekinesis all caused by a brain cancer that activates normally dormant regions of the brain. His first big problem is finding out why he got this power—since it scares the locals, it makes his personal life harder than it used to be (he's from a small town). Once he finds out, he takes it much better—yes, he takes a brain cancer that kills him in less than two years, and the inconveniences that go with treating such a cancer, much more peacefully than ostracism.
  • In all three Spider-Man Trilogy movies, Spider-Man is constantly whining about how "cursed" he is. In fact the only time he isn't whining about something is when he has the Symbiote suit, which enhanced his powers and made him far more badass, and therefore, cool. After he loses it he seems to be even more whiny and grating.
  • Jason Bourne in The Bourne Series has had mad assassin training and can read every map, drive every vehicle, speak every language, fire every weapon, can enter anywhere and kill anyone with anything. All that for the little price of his personal memory, however. He also has to dodge a lot of assassins.
  • At the end of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, we get to see what happened to all the bad kids. Violet is let off the easiest, and is pleased to find that she's much more flexible after becoming a blueberry and then getting juiced. Only her mother is bothered that she's still blue.
  • Highlander: All of the immortals have perpetual youth and are nearly indestructible. They enjoy the benefits of many lifetimes worth of experiences, wealth and knowledge. However, they can never have children and must watch everyone they love grow old and die. There's also the whole problem of living your life worrying about other immortals trying to kill you.
  • Batman. Yes, it's so hard to be one of the richest, most attractive, most intelligent men in the world with fighting abilities rivaling most Special Forces, and hi-tech gizmos that NASA would need a decade to reverse-engineer. The Burton/Schumacher movies actually have characters calling out Bruce Wayne on this. The Nolan movies, however, examine how physically and mentally taxing it is to live a double-life as Batman.
  • In Dracula Untold, Vlad's abilities after he becomes a vampire are extremely powerful, being able to curbstomp entire armies in a single battle, but comes at the price of him having blood thirst and being an abomination in the sight of God and man, causing his allies to turn against him.
  • In The Suicide Theory, Percival desperately wants to die, but keeps surviving his numerous suicide attempts, going so far has to hire a hit man, Steve, to off him (he survives three further attempts by Steve to fulfill that contract). Steve tries to convince Percival that as he is essentially invincible, he can do whatever he wants without any lasting consequences at all, but Percival isn't convinced, and his many attempt to die leave him looking increasingly chewed up throughout the movie.
  • In the German film Boxhagener Platz, the cool granny protagonist has already survived five husbands. And number six and seven follow the course.
  • In The Last Witch Hunter, the Witch Queen "curses" Kaulder with immortality in attempt to exploit Who Wants to Live Forever?, but it only turns him into world's best witch hunter. Justified later, as it turns out she used him as "storage" for her immortality, it being necessary to bring her back to life fully.

  • In Christian folklore, the Wandering Jew is ostensibly "cursed" with eternal—or at least unnaturally long—life for taunting Jesus on the way to the Crucifixion. Of course, this could double as a case of Blessed with Suck from the Christian perspective: If the Wandering Jew truly is immortal, then no matter what good deeds he does to atone for his sinful act, he can never go to Heaven, since one must die in order to enter the afterlife.
    • However, without the curse, he would never have had time to repent, and he almost certainly would have gone to Hell. Sure, not being able to go to Heaven sucks, but between the choice of "Live forever and never go to Heaven," or "Go to Hell," he easily got a good deal. As Hell is (pretty much by definition) the worst possible thing, then even floating in an empty universe after it undergoes heat death would be a step up.
    • Also, according to Christianity, second coming will bring kingdom of God anyways (with resurrection of dead and so on.), so technically, it is not necessary to die, the guy just has to wait a bit longer.
  • According to legend, Thomas The Rhymer was captured by the Fairie Queen, and traded his ability to lie for his freedom. Since he could no longer speak an untrue word, every prediction he spoke about the future came true sooner or later.

  • The Heroes of Olympus: Frank Zhang could darn well be the Trope Codifier. To balance out the many gifts granted by his ancestry, including the Zhang family's Animorphism powers, the gods link his life force to a stick. If it burns down completely, he dies. However, the fire from the stick has been shown to be able to free Death himself; who knows what other awesome stuff it could do.
  • James "Demise" Spector of the Wild Cards series. Sure, he has the unpleasant experience of coming back painfully from the dead, but this leaves him with the nifty superpower of being able to kill any opponent (or just plain anyone that he feels like killing) by making eye-contact and having them psychically experience the full, appalling agony of that death. He 's later able to refine his control of this to allow him just to render an opponent unconscious, if he feels like it. He's also indestructible. He does still feel pain like a normal human being, which sucks a bit, but otherwise? Cursed With Awesome.
    • There is the slight drawback of constantly reliving his death, however.
  • Lilith's Brood : The Oankali consider humans uniquely blessed and genetically very attractive because we have . . . cancer. It turns out the same genes that can go so horribly wrong also can be used for regenerative abilities they've never seen before.
  • Vampirism is often an example of Cursed With Awesome, depending on how Your Vampires Are Different. Potential upsides: immortality, super-strength, shape shifting, hypnotic powers, or sometimes just open-ended Functional Magic. Potential downsides: parasitic dependency, social isolation, inability to endure daylight, addictive cravings and/or psychotic need to kill, various Kryptonite Factors, demonic or even decayed appearance, and loss of one's soul (whatever that may mean in your reality). Whether one is merely cursed or actually Cursed With Awesome depends on how much from Column A you get relative to Column B.
    • Sluggy Freelance spoofs this (and Anne Rice's vampires in specific) in this exchange.
    • The comedy Love at First Bite also ends with Cindy Sondheim agreeing to become a vampire because it was pretty awesome. Also, she fell in love with Count Dracula - and she never was a morning person.
    • Interestingly, in Christopher Moore's You Suck, a woman loves being a vampire because she no longer has to be afraid of other people, whereas her boyfriend, whom she turns into one to be with her, realizes he hates having to suck blood and not being able to go out during the day.
      • It's even better when you realise why they take it so differently: the girl had been a living accessory to rich, powerful men all her life, with no real skills, ambitions or capabilities. As a vampire, she is finally important and powerful by default, which is like a dream come true. Her boyfriend, however, despite being a 100-pound-nothing weakling, always knew what he wanted to be and had the guts to leave his home (with his family's blessing) and strike out on his own, taking most things that happen to him with pretty good humor. So vampirism really has nothing to offer to him, it just takes away the things he already had and liked.
    • The vampires in Twilight "suffer" this to the extreme. Yeah, they have to drink blood and they can't go out in sunlight, but they also get Super Strength, Super Speed, super-attractiveness, skin as hard as diamonds, and the only the way they can be fully destroyed is by tearing them apart and burning the pieces. Oh, and the reason they can't go out in sunlight isn't because they'll burn up... it's because their skin sparkles. If they live in an area where the weather is usually overcast, like the Olympic Peninsula, they can go outside whenever they feel like it. And the blood they drink doesn't have to be human blood... the Cullens subsist on animal blood.
      • And Word of God says in the Illustrated Guide that there really is no downside to eating animal blood. It just doesn't taste as good.
      • And hey guys, Twilightverse vampirism doesn't affect your sperm viability!
      • Although your 'true love' is likely to die from the pregnancy.
      • Bella naturally lampshades the Angst Dissonance from start to finish.
    • Werewolves in The Dresden Files are either cursed into it, in which case they're violent murderers who kill anyone they love, which really does suck, or they choose it willingly. All who've chosen it willingly seem to really, really enjoy it.
      • Of course, this is partly because there are four different types of werewolves in the setting, and most people who choose it willingly will choose one of the types that has minimal drawbacks.
    • In The Sookie Stackhouse Mysteries, vampires are legally recognized and citizens. However, they can't marry, and their blood is a popular drug. There are people who kidnap vamps, bind them with silver chains, drain all their blood, and just leave the weakened vamp out in the open. Since they're unable to get to cover before daylight, they generally die. This has the handy side effect of destroying the victim and the witness in one fell swoop. Even if they do survive, it takes them months to recover.
    • In President's Vampire, Cade sulks about the fact that he's a cursed creature of the night forced to drink blood. His human co-worker Zach and his fellow vampiress Tania both point out that being immortal, ever-young super-strong and super-fast predator with eidetic memory and Nigh-Invulnerability is actually pretty cool, even if sunlight burns you.
  • Quite a few characters inflicted with Animorphism will bemoan their fates so Wangstily when they are turned into things like swans, bears, or dragons, you wonder how they'd react if they were turned into worms.
    • In Animorphs, Tobias flat out calls morphing "the Andalite's Curse". Early in the series the characters range from neutral to excited about the power, and even after becoming intimately familiar with the major downside the kids often have moments of delight in being certain animals and in Mundane Utility. Everyone likes flying as birds or experiencing the mindset of dogs and dolphins. The major curse aspect is really because when they were given this power they were drafted into being guerilla fighters in a traumatic, long-lasting war that only they can fight, and the further they get into the series the more likely a given character is to consider their powers grimly.
      • Speaking of Tobias, his home life is terrible and his delight in being a hawk and far removed from human concerns means that within days of gaining the morphing power he gets careless about the time limit and enters Shapeshifter Mode Lock - it's a little ambiguous about to what degree this was voluntary, but it wasn't a careful and considered choice. He loves flying and having sharp eyesight, but the reality of being a bird full-time quickly takes a toll - he has to kill to eat, his social and entertainment life is just about gone, and his lifespan is going to be curtailed. At some point he's given the ability to morph as a hawk, including to temporarily take human shape, and angsts about that still, uncertain if he's happy, both missing his human body and feeling frustrated with its limitations, identifying more closely with the hawk, and knowing that if he became human full time he wouldn't be able to help the others.
    • In Dr. Franklin's Island the castaways are put through Involuntary Transformation. Miranda-the-bird's form seems much easier to live with than Semi-the-fish's or Arnie-the-snake's - she's lost her arms to wings, but can fly with ease and her feet are constructed like hands, albeit scaled and taloned. It's mentioned that she loves being a bird but hates being a bird in a cage. She can't talk, though, and she starts losing her mind when it starts to look like Semi will become human again and she will stay a bird.
  • The Librarian at Unseen University in the Discworld novels was accidentally transformed into an orangutan (NOT a monkey. If you value your life, do NOT call him a monkey.), and he has gone to great pains to ensure he stays that way. Not only is he now strong enough to twist the head off of anyone who annoys him, but he can reach the high shelves without a ladder, and can safely read those books filled with Things Man Was Not Meant to Know, since he's not technically a man anymore.
  • Aristanae and all her female ancestors suffer from this in Darkness Becomes Her. As descendants of Medusa, they are all doomed to either die or be killed before their twenty-first birthday, or become a monster. However, Ari herself is able to control the power to extents no one had seen before, and she is feared by some of the most powerful gods, but still, no one knows what will happen after her birthday...
    • She's also a Gorgeous Gorgon, at least in Sebastian and Violet's opinion.
  • Several retelling of the French fairy tale, "Diamonds and Toads" invoke this trope for the stepsister who is cursed with having reptiles and amphibians fall out of her mouth whenever she speaks. In the Gail Carson Levine story, the stepsister ends up opening a snake racetrack and makes money as a bookie. In the Heather Tomlinson novel, the stepsister's snakes save everyone by eating all the plague-carrying rats. Another continuation of the story has her fall in love with and marry a herpetologist.
  • In The Tamuli by David Eddings, the Delphae are cursed by their God with a horrifically gruesome death touch, and a glow that warns others not to touch them. Since both also come with an off-switch, and since the power eventually evolves into greater magical abilities, the Knights are a bit stumped as to why it's called a "curse", until the Bhelliom explains that there's a literal difference between a blessing and a curse—a blessing's radiance makes those blessed easily detected by anyone who could sense magic, but curses are, by their very nature, concealing, and actually dampen the "sound" of magic near them. Since the Delphae are trying to hide from the rest of mankind a curse was the most suitable... which kinda makes it a curse In Name Only.
    • A downside would be that everyone fears and hates them. Also, the Delphae themselves are not fond of the power, as making people rot when you touch them is not fun, even if they're your enemies. Several have breakdowns during the war as a result of having to use it too many times.
  • Garion in The Belgariad. He's The Chosen One, and he spends most of the series asking "Why me?" He is a sorcerer- sorcerers work by using the Will and the Word (they direct their will at something and speak the word to make it happen.) Although it's pretty awesome as to what he can do, in Queen Of Sorcery, he believes himself to be evil after he burns the killer of his parents to death using sorcery. It's a Running Gag that nobody else thinks there's anything wrong with his situation, and eventually he passes the question on to other characters after he grows up and stops whining. Considering part of his Cursed With Awesome is "Oh, you know that legendary one-eyed god who's psychotically evil and still REALLY mad about his being maimed? Who's indirectly responsible, one way or another, for the horrible death of your parents and lots of your ancestors? You have to confront him. Nope, no one else gets to do it. Nope, no way out. It's all you. Even though up until very recently as far as you knew, you were an ordinary farmboy being raised by his aunt. Good luck!" It's more like he stops whining not because he grows up but because he actually lives to do it and the suck side is drastically reduced.
  • People descended from the Meyerdahl Beta wave of genetic modification in the Honor Harrington 'verse (including the eponymous protagonist) are faster, stronger and gain an intelligence boost, but anytime it comes up the heroine seems to fixate on her increased need for food (from the enhanced metabolism) and the fact that approximately a 3rd of them don't regenerate well (which is only an issue for the main character because she has a propensity towards getting mutilated in the line of duty).
  • You'd think that having a marked tendency to accidentally break every third thing you touch would count as a curse. The protagonist of Brandon Sanderson's Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians certainly does. But what if you learned this "curse" extended to breaking doors that you need to get through, or your grandfather's restraints, or that gun the villain is about to shoot you with ...
    • One of his ancestors who had the same Talent broke time and space in the area around his tomb.
  • Winter Celchu (introduced in the Star Wars Expanded Universe Thrawn novels and subsequently featuring in the X-Wing comics) has a perfect memory, which leads to a curious case of both Cursed With Awesome and Blessed with Suck: in her work as an Intelligence agent her ability to remember conversations verbatim and maps with a single glance (just for a start) was doubtless of endless use, but the pain of such horrible things as the destruction of her homeworld Alderaan never fades. She's very pragmatic about the ability, though.
  • Elva of the Inheritance Cycle is originally purely Blessed with Suck. However, she figures out very quickly how to use her empathetic abilities to her advantage, eventually becoming a Manipulative Bastard antiheroine.
  • The novella "How I Wrote the New Testament, Ushered in the Renaissance, and Birdied the 17th Hole at Pebble Beach" by Mike Resnick has, as the description puts it, "an itinerant Jewish businessman commanded (condemned?) by Christ to "tarry here until I return," spending the next 2000 years trying to keep busy and occasionally helping along the advancement of civilization".
  • Eustace Clarence Scrubb from The Chronicles of Narnia was turned into a dragon, and this is treated as a punishment. Probably because of the ring he had put on as a human, which did not grow and was squeezing his wrist the whole time. There's also the issue that he could no longer associate with humans, since the vast majority would hunt him down and kill him. On top of that, he wouldn't have fit on the ship, and would therefore need to be left behind; and it's strongly implied that dragons are highly territorial and solitary. And before his change of heart, he was an intellectual bully who needed an audience he could abuse and act superior to in order to feel better about himself. So he was facing a long, lonely life in a strange world with no chance of ever returning to human society. Once the pain of the ring had been eased by Lucy's healing cordial, he actually began to enjoy his dragon form and the special abilities it gave him not least because he used those abilities to contribute to the group and for the first time had real friends. Thus began his Heel–Face Turn.
    • He gets a bit of a better deal in the movie version, where he gets the bracelet yanked off pretty early on, is able to fly alongside of the ship, and uses his fire-breathing to help fight the sea serpent.
  • Orson Scott Card's Ender series has Olhado, who lost his eyes in an accident when he was a child, and they were replaced with high-tech metal eyes capable of recording what he sees for later playback. His mother laments his deformity, and his brother marvels that a freak like Olhado could find a wife. Rarely do characters treat Olhado's metal eyes as an advantage rather than a curse. Olhado himself doesn't seem to mind them; he's arguably the most well-adjusted member of his family.
  • In ''The Kingdoms of Evil, the main character is forced to rule half a continent.
  • In the Knight and Rogue Series Michael becomes the only intelligent human with magic abilities after being experimented on by a Mad Scientist. He instantly labels himself a freak when this power is still restricted to heightening his ability to sense magic in nature, and is frightened to the point of nausea when it gives him the ability to... make water wetter, though he calms down somewhat when Fisk points out that this isn't that big of a deal. When he figures out how to use his abilities to basically give his horse superpowers to escape being murdered and save himself from a 300 ft drop, he still thinks it's the worst thing in the world.
  • In the first Sword of Truth book, Darken Rahl curses Richard in what he THINKS is a completely debilitating way: His enemies will see him as himself, and his friends will see him as their worst enemy. This has the expected effect (including being attacked by Zedd and Kahlan), but shortly afterwards, he meets his half-brother, who KNOWS WHO HE IS! Justice ensued.
  • In the Alex Verus series, Luna's luck-stealing curse has the nice side effect of rendering her immune to casual misfortunes and making her generally lucky. Plus, it doesn't just affect people she likes: She brings bad luck to her enemies, too. Justified in that the curse was created by taking a useful (if morally questionable) luck-draining spell and making it permanent.
  • The clockworkers in Steven Harper's Clockwork Empire series have a disease that will drive them insane and eventually kill them, but in the meanwhile they become super-geniuses who can bend time and space in addition to improved strength and reflexes. Could also be considered Blessed with Suck, but not a bad deal overall.
  • In Sukhinov's Emerald City decalogy, eight years old girl Corina is cursed by the Wicked Witch of the East to age ten times slower than normal. A horrible curse when you are eighteen in a body of a nine years old! When you are eighty in a body of a fifteen years old? Not so much.
  • In Emily of New Moon, Emily Starr considers her imprecise and very rare psychic manifestations as awful, never-to-be-spoken-of incidents, when these powers only ever are shown as helping people. However, Justified when one considers Values Dissonance — psychic powers were classified under "insanity" in the Victorian era.
  • This is the linchpin of A Wolf In The Soul. In order to be victorious over the werewolf taking over his body, Greg needs to fully internalize that this isn't the case, even if he already thinks on an intellectual level that it's horrible.
  • In the Hush, Hush series, being a fallen angel means that you don't feel pain, are insanely strong, and can mind control others. All fallen angels still hate what they are.
  • In Watersong, the sirens tell Gemma they view their curse like this, since they get to be eternally youthful and beautiful and spend their days doing the things they love most.
  • The needle-symbiote-infected humans in Eden Green have to deal with painful transformations and potential And I Must Scream scenarios brought about by their new immortality, but on the bright side, they can survive any injury and are able to fight back against the monsters invading their city.
  • The robot Giskard in Robots and Empire has the unique ability to not only read the minds of humans, but alter their thoughts as well. This would be great for a human, but for a Three-Laws Compliant robot (this is an Isaac Asimov story, after all), it's a burden more than anything. Protecting humans from physical harm is easy, but protecting their more delicate psyches is a much greater challenge.
  • The (adult) villain of The Thief Lord wants to use the MacGuffin to become younger. He ends up de-aged all the way to a child. This is treated as Laser-Guided Karma, but if you think about it, he actually got exactly what he wanted - he just has to wait a few years.
  • The Mortal Instruments shows us Simon. He thinks it's bad to be a vampire. Other vampires tell him that they can not understand what he's bothering about, because he has sharp senses, is superhumanly strong, immortal, and in addition one of the few vampires who do not mind sunlight. But Simon is bothered that he will be forever young, while all his friends are getting older. He is also religious, and as a vampire can not longer enter a synagogue.
    • There is also Luke. He was previously a nephilim, but was bitten by a werewolf, and then turned into one. Initially, he finds it terrible to be a werewolf, mainly because he was a fanatical demon hunter, and will be cast out of his friends and sister after his transformation. But later he thinks it's nice to be a werewolf.
    • And there is also Jace Herondale. He is much stronger and more resilient than the other nephilim, because Valentin has experimented with him. However, he believes that he is partly a demon, and thus a dangerous monster. At the same time he is in love with Clary, whom he considers his sister, and considers himself more of a monster. However, when he learns in the course of the action that he is partly an angel (even more than the other nephilim), and that he and Clary are not related, he is pleased.
      • In later books, it turns out that he actually has a small portion of demon blood in him, because he is a descendant of the witch Tessa Gray.

    Live Action TV 
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • Buffy, who is cursed to be a "hot chick with superpowers", as Faith once put it. The curse part is she has to use said superpowers to fight for her life every night, and the world's existence every late Spring. All Evil is waiting for is for its "one good day" to fall on one where they can end the world. And statistically, she's ancient - most slayers die the same year they're chosen. At fifteen.
    • In the episode "Nightmares", Buffy is temporarily turned into a vampire... which gives her the strength she needs to defeat the Monster of the Week.
    • Angel is cursed with a soul. Good in that he's immortal with superpowers, irresistible to young girls, a shoe-in to be a Hunter of His Own Kind and the titular star of his own Vampire Detective Series. Bad in that he has a century of Charles Manson's memories in his head and said soul never lets him forget it.
    • Dawn. While being a giant and centaurette were annoying to her, she at least acknowledged they had some good points. Being turned into a doll though... not so much.
  • Similar to Buffy, Dollhouse, another Joss Whedon project, has Echo, slave to the titular organization and all too aware that she and her fellow Actives are being exploited. This curse, however, comes with the ability to call on skills from any imprint she's ever received.
  • Angel:
    • The Groosalugg was cursed with unmatched combat skill. As he recounts his life's story to Cordelia, he talks about how his human heritage in the demon world of Pylea got him banished to the Scum Pits of Ur, meaning for him to die. Unfortunately, his awesome combat skills prevent him from dying honorably, as he destroys every one of his opponents, making him The Groosalugg, or undefeated champion.
    • Angel is cursed with a soul (see above).
    • Doyle (and later Cordelia) gets visions from the Powers That Be about people who need Angel's help. And when we say "visions" we mean "great splitting migraines with pictures."
  • A number of characters on The Big Bang Theory have this.
    • Sheldon is by far the most brilliant and was a Child Prodigy. This, however, alienated him from his family and classmates and, as such, stunted his emotional development to the point where he has difficulty recognizing basic emotions in others. He's also stated that his eidetic memory causes him to not enjoy much of life because of the lack of challenge.
    • Leonard was driven strongly by academic parents to succeed and became world-renowned as an experimental physicist. But he also was denied basic comfort and affection by his family and has great difficulty relating to women.
    • Raj was brought up in great wealth surrounded by intense poverty. This privileged upbringing (probably caused by being surrounded by Yes-Man servants) causes him to not know how to act around people who aren't required to like him. The selective mutism around women probably came from somewhere in the same area once he had to get girls without his money.
    • Howard's lack of relationship with his father and overbearing mother cause him to act out. He is by far the most outgoing and talkative of the main four but is often unaware of how much he is disliked. He also excelled in school in order to impress and bring pride to his mother. This costs him the ability to take care of his own life and he expects his mother (and later Bernadette) to take care of him.
  • Heroes touches on this a lot.
    • Chronologically, the first offender was Brian Davis, who wished he didn't have his powers. He gets his wish when Sylar kills him. Most other characters are somewhat angsty about the consequences of their powers, but quickly learn to make use of them.
    • But some cry about it throughout the entire series. Such as Claire Bennet: her ability is regeneration, and she cries about it nearly all throughout season one, mourning how she's the freakshow of the cheerleaders, despite the fact that nobody except for a very select few friends and family knows about her ability, nor is her ability all that apparent unless she severely wounds herself in plain sight. Then in season two, it gets even worse, because she cries that she can't go around showing her ability and how restrained she feels. Never mind the fact that the only way to show her ability to others is by injuring herself. Never mind the fact that all she has to do in order to avoid suspicion is lay off her masochistic tendencies. Then she realizes the possibility of the company finding her, because they'll run tests on her and stuff, poking and prodding her. She cries about this too, even though it seems that's all she wants to do to herself; if you find an episode with Claire in it in the first two seasons that doesn't involve a suicide attempt or self mutilation, you get a cookie. And then in season three, she loses the ability to feel pain, and cries about that because it apparently takes all the fun out of self-mutilation. At one point she mentions this to Elle, who is suffering horrific agony due to her Power Incontinence, and is, needless to say, not pleased to hear it.
    • Emma Coolidge in Volume Five, a deaf woman who develops the power to see sounds as multicolored lights. This not only looks pretty cool, but also makes her an Instant Expert at playing musical instruments. Her first reaction (after receiving independent verification that she's not hallucinating) is to demand that it be taken away and spend several episodes Wangsting about it for no readily apparent reason.
  • Lizzie McGuire: Lizzie, after trying to find something she is good at, is not very happy to find out she is a rhythmic gymnastics prodigy, calling it a "stupid talent" to have and does not enjoy taking part in a competition which she easily wins.
  • Scott McCall from Teen Wolf. He doesn't see the awesomeness of lycanthropy when Derek Hale says the bite is a gift, arguing that being turned into a werewolf has made his life much more difficult and now he has to hide it from everyone around him. Justified at first by a Superpowered Evil Side, but now he has full control and seems to have grown out of the angst. His best friend, Stiles Stilinski, rejects the bite later as well because of a similar reasoning and states that he's perfectly happy being a normal human.
  • Clark Kent on Smallville, constantly whines and angsts about how terrible it is to be an alien "outsider" with such and awful secret. Yep, an outsider with: two unbelievably loving parents, some awesome best friends who are totally supportive when they eventually learn his secret (and one's a hottie that's totally in love with him to boot), an acceptable level of baseline popularity in school, gets to looks like Tom goddamn Welling so most chicks think he's hot-as... oh and the small matter of developing a wide array of earth-shattering superpowers that make him a virtually unkillable demigod. He's not even superficially distinguishable from a human. Yeah, boo-frikkety-hoo, Clark; cry me a river... If it weren't for kryptonite it would be win-win-win.
    • Admittedly, his whining becomes slightly more justified in later seasons as some people he loves die or move away, his would-be OTP starts getting really screwy, and increasingly more dangerous and determined adversaries are pitted against him. Still, you wish you could just tell him that a few years down the track he'll get the hot chick, be the universally beloved protector of the planet, hang out with a bunch of super buddies etc... SO JUST PUT A SOCK IN IT!
    • He does have the problem of potentially losing control of his strength at a bad time, like during sex, but he later gets a handle on this, making the lesson here "Stop whining and practice controlling your strength so it won't be an issue."
  • Subverted in Reaper. At first it seems like the devil owning Sam's soul looks like the best thing that's ever happened to him: he gets a cool job as a hunter of escaped souls, powers specially designed for each soul so he shouldn't have too much trouble with them, and the big guy's inside advice on how to get laid. However, the devil also occasionally screws with Sam's life just for the hell of it, and he can't say anything about it to the girl he really loves since it would jeopardize her ownership of her own soul.
  • In Stargate Atlantis, Teyla is understandably freaked out at first when she learns her telepathic abilities stem from the fact she's part Wraith. However, being a no-nonsense Action Girl, she quickly comes to terms with her background and quickly sets out trying to figure how she can use it against the Wraith.
  • To some extent, David Banner of The Incredible Hulk. Turning into a green raging behemoth whenever you get angry is pretty lousy, yes, but as played on the show it nearly always kicked in to save him or someone else from life-threatening danger.
    • Justified in that David has no memory of what he does as the Hulk, and no conscious control over when he'll change or what he'll do when he does, and the Hulk's insane Super Strength means it could very easily kill people. If David could see the Hulk as the audience sees him, he'd be much more relaxed about the whole thing. As it is, put yourself in David's shoes, and you have every reason to be terrified of the uncontrollable giant green rage monster lurking inside you. (Yes, young Clark Kent, that means you.)
  • Openly addressed in the first episode of Being Human (UK). "How noble of you to take on the curse of immortality so that your friends could wither and decay in hospitals and old people's homes..."
    • Similarly, McNair sees lycanthropy as a blessing rather than curse: "When bones break, they repair stronger, when skin tears, it heals tougher."
    • Although in both cases, vampirism and lycanthropy do seriously suck, especially if you aren't prepared for it.
  • "No Grandpa, not the shrinking cap!" from the So Bad, It's Good Grandpa in My Pocket.
  • The Charmed Ones from Charmed seem to fit this. For the first three series they don't half go on about being spectacularly powerful witches (especially Piper) and are all somewhat inclined towards giving up their powers if given the chance (especially Piper...) in fact, they only stop complaining about their abilities (to freeze time or move things with their mind/astrally project or see into the future/levitate) in order to use them to save the day from demon of the week.
    • This may have more to do with the fact the writers set up the entire universe to ensure the sisters would never get to use their powers for anything besides demon-killing. Several episodes are centered around them trying to do something for themselves and getting punished for it.
  • Acknowledged in the promotional ads for The Listener, about a guy who can hear people's thoughts: he used to think his power was a curse, but he's figured out a way to save people with it.
  • Stefan, Damon, Bonnie, Elena and all other supernatural beings on The Vampire Diaries who possess special superhuman powers or abilities.
  • Although Captain Jack Harkness from Torchwood doesn't spend a lot of time bemoaning the fact that he can't die, he has clearly found the drawbacks to it, and there is a fair amount of subtext. He also has to watch almost all his friends, his lover, and at least one member of his family die, then step up and fix everything anyway. He's sort of expected to be emotionless - not cold, just unable to be emotionally hurt or depressed. This, ironically, has got to be depressing.
  • Saturday Night Live: in one skit, a man is cursed to summon a sexy sax player named Sergio who immediately invokes everyone around him to dance.
  • Lost: The Man in Black was thrown into the Island's source by Jacob, which stripped him from his body and turned him into the monster, which was said to be a fate worse than death, and he's trapped on the Island. However, he can shape-shift and impersonate dead people to manipulate others to do his bidding, is immortal and can't be killed by bullets or knives, and in his smoke monster form he can kill an entire group of people with ease.
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation The android Data is stronger than a Klingon, smarter than a Vulcan, doesn't need sleep or food or drink, can survive in open space or on any planet, can interface with anything that moves and doesn't have to worry about fear, sadness, hatred, or any other negative emotions, even if he's constantly the victim of racism. But, poor guy, all he wants is to be more human. And even in Star Trek: Generations, when he finally retrieves his emotion chip from his Ax-Crazy brother, Lore, and it interferes with half of his regular operations, and makes him, frankly, a tool, he is still happy to hear LaForge say he's acting more human—in response to Data's chickening out and leaving LaForge in the hands of Dr. Soran and the Klingons. Averted in the next film, Data gets enough control over his emotion function to turn it off when it gets in the way. Lampshaded by Q in one episode, where he points out a great many species spend millennia trying to be as close as they possibly can get to what Data is by default, as a way of pointing out how absurd his desire to be human is.
    • Star Trek tends to go in for this trope a lot. Odo in Deep Space 9 and Seven of Nine in Voyager are other examples of characters with cool abilities and immunities who go through lots of angst over the fact that they aren't the same as everyone else.
    • Seven of Nine is perhaps an interesting subversion. Initially, she just wants to be a Borg again, since it's almost all she's ever known (she was assimilated as a young child). As the series progresses, she learns she can't go back, but doesn't entirely want to give up the positive things she's learned from the Borg (strive for efficiency and perfection). While she does set out to learn about and understand the positive aspects of humanity, she uses her differences in the best ways she can.
  • The Middleman has a character who was cursed with immortality as a punishment for kicking someone else out of a lifeboat on the Titanic. This rather backfired, because he thinks Living Forever Is Awesome.
  • Babylon 5 psychics, particularly in season 5, when they start whining about how they are all "weapons" created by the Vorlons.
    • Their main issue is with the Mundanes hating them. According to the canon Psi-Corps trilogy, when the knowledge of telepaths first became public on Earth, it was followed by mass Witch Hunts for anyone who even seemed like they may be a telepath. This is despite the Pope (you know, the head of the largest religion on the planet) telling people that he approves of telepaths. The only time shown in the book where he is heeded is when an Italian mob boss lets a telepath go after cheating in his casino, provided he uses his gift to help him.
    • To be fair, there is a lot about being a telepath in Babylon 5 that sucks. In order to keep from hearing the stray thoughts that everyone around them is constantly "shouting," one has to keep one's mind occupied with nursery rhymes, multiplication tables, anything and everything to generate "white noise" inside your own head. Because anything else is an invasion of privacy. Strong emotions are more difficult to block, so if someone's passionately intent on murder, you're going to hear it. And if you're hired to monitor a deal between two people, and one of them is preoccupied with "rather erotic" thoughts, well. . .
  • One episode of House implies that the title character may have Asperger's Syndrome, which allows him to focus intensely on his cases, at the expense of being a complete social incompetent and highly self-destructive (on the basis of an autistic boy he was treating deliberately meeting his gaze at the end of the episode, which he is stated to have never done before). On the other hand, House may just be a brilliant ass.
    • Wilson outright states at the end of the episode House doesn't have it — he's just an ass.
  • The Sentinel's Jim Ellison sometimes feels his super-senses are a curse; his first request of Blair is how to make them go away.
    • There are a number of episodes when they are a detriment to him rather than a gift. There's the "zoning-out" problem, which nearly gets him run over by a truck in the pilot, when he focuses his vision too much on a flying frisbee. Also, after his ears get flushed out from all the wax build-up, his hearing is Turned Up to Eleven, meaning he can't even focus at work thanks to all the tiny noises hitting him with the volume of a heavy metal concert. He's also extremely sensitive to pain, although Blair teaches him how to "dial it down" (specifically, using the "dial" imagery).
      • Funny thing is, it's never mentioned that the same super-sensitivity would also mean he would enjoy sex a lot more. Now imagine if two sentinels get it on...
      • Didn't that actually happen once? And with Jeri Ryan of all people. . .
  • In Once Upon a Time, Rumpelstiltskin is cursed to be the most powerful sorcerer in the land and to have sparkly grey skin—which he may or may not be able to conceal with magic. This also comes with a bent toward dark, murderous urges. That this is a curse is established in the Season 1 episode "Skin Deep," wherein Belle almost ends it with True Love's Kiss. In a slight departure, while the show clearly wants us to see him as cursed, Rumpelstiltskin himself never complains about his powers, and is quite sensibly freaked out at the prospect of losing them and being at the mercy of the Evil Queen, not to mention losing any chance of finding his son.
    • The detrimental aspects are not emphasised as much, but the power of the Dark One is much like that of a djinn in that he has incredible power, but there is a magical item which grants the holder complete control over him (as well as the ability to take on the curse via You Kill It, You Bought It). As long as he has the dagger, he can't be killed or controlled, but the curse also makes you prone to evil and the magic always comes with some kind of cost. What the cost will actually be doesn't seem to be predictable.
  • The Russian mini-series Wolf Messing: Seeing through time, based on the (possibly fictionalized) memoirs of a Real Life psychic of that name, portray Messing's abilities alternatively as a gift and as a curse. It's all fun when he uses them on stage to read people's thoughts or make them do something. The pilot starts with Messing being asked a trivial question during a performance (which hockey team will win the championship), and he ends up getting a vision so disturbing (one of the hockey teams will die in a plane crash) that he cuts the performance short and immediately calls the Kremlin. He also gets horrible visions about the two World Wars before they happen. When a character later remarks about how great it would be to see bad things coming and change them, Messing points out that the bad things he sees are too grand to change by him alone. Even the plane crash still happens, despite him warning Stalin about it. Strangely, he is unable to foresee his own people being exterminated by the Nazis. He is also once asked to find a dead girl's body based on a photograph, and he visibly breaks down after touching the picture and revealing the location. When the cops ask if he'd like to help them full-time, he opts to be in the circus instead.
  • Becoming a zombie is usually treated as a Fate Worse than Death, but in iZombie, zombies like the heroine Olivia "Liv" Moore get a lot of benefits. Liv retains her personality and intelligence as long as she routinely gets to eat human brain matternote , and also gain the ability to absorb the memories, skills and knowledge from the brains they eat. Liv is exceptionally resilient to injury; she can be shot and stabbed multiple times, she doesn't feel pain, she loses very little blood and the wounds eventually heal like they would for a normal person. On top of that, Liv has a "full-on zombie mode" where she gains Super Strength, able to chase down cars and overpower men much larger than her. She also doesn't need to sleep, and her alcohol tolerance is greatly increased. Against all that, the downsides of being a zombie are your taste gets dulled so you can't enjoy normal food again, you look like someone who hasn't seen in the sun and got a tan in years, and it can potentially alienate you from your friends and your career.
  • In the Stick Stickly TV special Stuck, Stick discovers several advantages to having an ice skate stuck to his foot, such as being able to cut out coupons, slice giant marshmallows, and slice potatoes.
  • Farscape: Normally, Jool's metal-melting scream falls into the inversion, as others routinely scare her or injure her specifically for that. But when someone hits on the bright idea of handcuffing her, she makes with the scream, and the cuffs are no more.

  • "Living Hell" by German Rock/Punk band Die Ärzte, in which a successful musician complains about all the sex, money and fame he gets. Inspired by... some real musician's complaint whose name escapes me right now.
  • Kendall Payne's The Prayer is based on this: a series of curses then explaining why they're awesome:
    May you find every step to be harder than the last
    so your character grows greater each stride.
  • Jazz pianist Keith Jarrett had to use a piano in bad shape for his legendary Köln Concert. The unique sound of the piano is seen to have contributed to the quality of the performance.

  • Norse Mythology has the story of Nornagest, a person who, as an infant, was going to be given blessings from the Norns (the Norse goddesses of Fate), but his parents angered one, who, instead of a blessing, gave him the "curse" that he would die when a specific candle finished burning. They manage to turn this "curse" into a blessing by putting out the candle so it would never "finish" burning... until he is forced to light it again three hundred years later.
    • A similar story from Scotland features three witches, a baby, and a piece of peat. No one told the baby, and on her wedding day she found the piece of peat and tossed it on the fire.
    • The Greek equivalent of that story was named Meleager. The Fates appeared to his mother and told her that he would only live as long as a certain stick in the fire remained unburned. Then when Meleager "accidentally" kills two of his brothers, his mom goes insane and burns the stick, which results in him horribly melting in the arms of his wife-to-be Atalanta.
    • A similar situation occurs in The Simpsons, in "Treehouse of Horror IV" -
    Homer: "Hey, wait. If I don't finish this last bite, you don't get my soul, do you?"
    Devil Flanders: "Well, technically, no, but..."
    Homer: "I'm smarter than the Devil! I'm smarter than..."
  • In a Greco-Roman myth recorded by Ovid in Metamorphoses a man named Lycaeon is turned into a wolf as divine punishment for being a cannibal and serving human flesh to the gods. It's strongly implied that he was happier in this form than as a human.
  • According to the Roman writer Ovid, Scylla was a nymph cursed to become one of the most powerful, hideous, and feared monsters in existence, making this Older Than Feudalism. She also raised bemoaning her fate to an art form few since have matched, deciding that if she couldn't be beautiful anymore, she'd stay in the spot she was transformed for the rest of her life, devouring anyone who came near. Having around six wild dogs attached to her may explain the whole 'devouring people' deal.
  • Diarmuid of The Love Spot from Celtic Mythology was "cursed" with the titular spot, which caused every woman who looked upon it to fall madly in love with him. A terrible, terrible curse indeed. It DOES kind of, indirectly lead to his death, though...
    • In fact, the concept of the geas (or geis) often overlaps with this trope; in many stories, it brings great power if the associated certain conditions are not violated, but upon violation a nasty curse does tend to kick in.
  • Egil, from Icelandic "Egil's Saga". Modern interpretation of it see his description as a clear sign of Paget's disease. It leads to many, many disadvantages but to one thing that is extremely useful for a Viking: a head that can even take the blow of an axe.

    Newspaper Comics 
  • In this Dilbert strip, Phil, the Prince of Insufficient Light, makes Dilbert choose between two "hideous fates": having eternal high pay but having to see all his work burned in front of him at the end of each day, or having his work be useful and appreciated but suffering eternal poverty. Dilbert points out that they're both better than his current job and recruits Wally to get in on the deal.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Chris Hero has a naturally elevated testosterone level. Most men would think that would be awesome but in Hero's case, it causes him to fail drug tests.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The "curse" of lycanthropy in Dungeons & Dragons, 3.5 Ed., once the afflicted player character succeeds on a Wisdom check of moderate difficulty. See here.
    • This depends on the player and character, for whom in some cases lycanthropy could ruin the character's access to powers or destroy the player's interest in the character by making him evil. However, many players enjoy playing this sort of brutal character and would not see it as a drawback at all. A player who is playing The Hero, however, would probably see almost no drawback to becoming a werebear. "Let's see; super strength, super toughness, and I remain Lawful Good?"
      • Taken Up to Eleven and toned down in 5th Edition. Regarding werebears, they are still the good werebeasts, but the Monster Manual states that there are some evil ones. On the other hand, lycanthropes now have complete immunity to nonmagical weapons that aren't silver, and they have this regardless of what form they are in. This means that even a good aligned character could still put the "curse" to good use as long as they take the right precautions on the night of the full moon.
    • All editions of Ravenloft, and Paizo in Pathfinder, put the bite back in lycanthrope, where it is not Cursed With Awesome, or Blessed with Suck. It's downright horrific. The GM is practically encouraged to have you one day wake up naked, covered in blood, with a horde of angry peasants brandishing pitchforks and an order of paladins hunting you down. The player does not control his character during his transformed states and has no idea what he did while changed. (This, of course, besides smacking of "Stop Having Fun" Guys, assumes the player character does not like to fight. That is...atypical of players.)
    • D&D 4e has the ability for player characters of level 11 or higher to transform into a lich, provided they have the money to cast the ritual. Oh, truly this is a horrible curse... which bestows the caster with almost doubled hit points, powerful regeneration, immunity to disease and poison, a significant bonus to all defences, and the ability to reconstruct yourself from a phylactery if killed. And there's no gradual drift towards evil in the gameplay mechanics, either. Why shouldn't the PCs try this again?
      • Of course, it does enthrall the player to Orcus. That's a significant downside for some. Besides, there's a far less amoral alternative, with Archliches; you need to be more powerful than a normal lich (level 20 and above, it's an epic destiny), but thanks to mixing in some Life Energy into the deal, you're fully alive and immortal, not to mention you have a nice aura that hurts anything you hate, alive or undead.
    • Conditional CwA, but for a transgender person, the Girdle of Masculinity/Femininity (under rules as written) would be exactly this sort of thing.
    • Up to 3rd Edition, a drow was turned into a drider (a centaur-like creature that was the upper-body of a drow and a giant black widow spider from the waist down) by their dark goddess Lolth as a punishment for failing a Rite of Passage. Exactly why Lolth would turn one of her subjects into a likeness of herself and make them stronger in the process (letting them keep their divine spellcasting ability too if they happened to be clerics) did seem a little strange, and in the 4th edition, this was changed via retcon, making driders a privileged caste bestowed on drow as a reward. In 5th edition, however, this was changed back, playing this trope straight again.
      • Well, there is the agonizing transformation, plus your mind gets wiped in the process. It's not exactly fun.
      • For a while, the idea was that driders got 'stuck' — that is, they got powerful new abilities, but since they were now monsters they couldn't get class levels, so while vastly more powerful than the overwhelming majority of drow they weren't quite as powerful as the most powerful drow (Drow society pushing being The Social Darwinist, this was a valid reason for Driders to be looked down at). The problem came in when edition changes made it possible for driders to gain class levels without changing the drider/drow relationship in settings that had been around before 3E...
  • Point buy based systems tend to allow your character to gain extra points to buy powers if you take disadvantages. Some of the more munchkin-prone players enjoy picking "drawbacks" that may lack a certain sting. "Berserker" may turn you into a rage-driven killing machine that causes you to attempt to destroy anything that crosses your line of sight... which is half the definition of adventurer in the first place. (The other half is taking their stuff afterwards.)
  • Some players have turned some 'cursed' items to their advantage, embracing this trope. The greatest example was the classic D&D Sword -1 Cursed, a Clingy MacGuffin which would, no matter what you did to get rid of it, would reappear in your hand when combat began. Many did not see a disadvantage of dealing with a -1 penalty for a weapon which was always available. This would eventually make an appearance in one of the Ravenloft novels in the hands of a villain.
    • This is parodied in Ninja Burger, where the cursed item card has no drawback, and means the "cursed" item can now never be stolen or destroyed.
    • Another cursed sword (which makes an appearance in Baldur's Gate) actually gets a bonus to hit and damage to encourage people to use it. When practicing with it, there's no problem. When anyone attacks you, it causes you to go berserk and kill anyone in the vicinity, only calming down some time after all attackers are dead or have fled. In theory, this is a curse because of the risk of hurting your allies, but in practice, there are ways around this, and it may very well be your best available weapon if you're going the One-Man Army route.
      • Similarly, the 3.5 DMG goes so far as to list a sword that enrages the user as being boon or bane, depending on the wielder's own views. Seen here.
    • A Necklace of Strangulation chokes to death anyone who puts it on. It sounds like a horrible item to find. No one says you have to wear it. No one says you can't, say, bribe an enemy with it. Oops. There are many similarly wicked items enterprising players can abuse.
    • Another classic example is the Bag of Devouring, a cursed Bag of Holding that tries to swallow anyone who reaches inside it. Many players are quick to see the potential in a portable garbage disposal. The general consensus is that any player who can't find a use for a "cursed" item isn't trying hard enough.
      • Which is why the DM Guide warns the Dungeon Master to never assume that players will "automatically" discard cursed items on realizing their status. It even gives an example - Dust of Sneezing and Choking, which does Exactly What It Says on the Tin, can do it to either the owner... or those orcs over there that just had it thrown over their heads. (The item is only "cursed" because it looks almost identical to Dust of Disappearance, which makes you invisible, and tracks as such when identifying it.)
  • Speaking of Ravenloft, each domain—a subsection of the plane—is ruled, at least in part, by a darklord, an incredibly evil individual, though not always an unsympathetic one. They get all sorts of shiny powers out of the deal, but it also earns them a curse-which, in and of itself, is personally tailored to the person so that, it wouldn't be so bad for anyone else, but the darklord's personality makes it so that it becomes unberable.
    • The demon lord Baphomet, who was supposedly either a human or an animal (presumably a bull, given his minotaur links) "cursed" to be a super-powerful demon lord ruling an entire layer of the Abyss and building his own monsters.
  • Given that the world of Exalted has the Immaculate Order, an entire religion devoted to demonizing the Celestial Exalted, it's entirely possible for a Solar or Lunar with Immaculate sympathies to view having become an incredibly powerful demigod as a curse. (Terrestrials are venerated by the Order, and Sidereals a) have been forgotten by most of Creation, including the Order, and b) are recruited, trained, and disabused of any inaccurate notions about Exaltation and the world in general within days of the Second Breath.)
    • Sidereals have to deal with Arcane Fate... a unique astrological phenomenon that causes any being not Sidereal or in the employment of the Bureau of Destiny to gradually forget that they exist. While this is a grand boon to their ability to operate as covert agents (especially since they can 'invent' cover identities that are unaffected by Arcane Fate), it likewise means that if they don't watch their step, critical allies and loved ones will forget they ever existed.
  • If you're really lucky in Warhammer 40,000, you'll end up like this. Example: The closest thing to retirement a Space Marine might ever get is having their mangled, mortally wounded body put on life support and encased in a Dreadnought, a heavily armed walking tank, for thousands of years. Getting to blow shit up from beyond the grave, and sleeping the rest of the time, seems pretty cool.
    • There's one tale Orks tell of a warband that ventured into the Eye of Terror, ending up on a demon world where they were all slaughtered... only to be raised again every morning to keep fighting, for the Blood God. Orks consider this heaven.
    • The Eldar have an unusual version of this. In order to keep their emotions under control they dedicate themselves to a single career (called a Path), mastering that before leaving it behind and moving onto something else. However occasionally an Eldar will become "stuck" on a particular path and be unable to switch. The downside is that when this happens they risk losing control of themselves, the upside is they become VERY, VERY good at it. In particular Eldar who have become stuck on the path of either the Warrior or the Witch (called Exarchs and Farseers) are the leaders of Eldar society.
    • Psykers in general in the setting. While it ranges from people being able to control their power to ones who would just implode and take half the city with him, most of them have some pretty awesome powers. Alpha-class human psykers are said to be able to destroy titans, Humongous Mecha that would make a Gundam look tiny in comparison, by crushing it with their minds. The aforementioned Farseers are able to see into the future and manipulate the strains of fate, but are otherwise cursed to crystallize slowly over time, becoming one with their own craftworlds.
    • On the other end of the spectrum, Necrons also suffer from a case of this. They're more or less immortal (it's hinted that not a single Necron has ever permanently died, only to be reduced to atoms then teleported to a nearby tomb for repairs), possess strength on par with Space Marines or more, and have guns that strip you one molecule at a time to your bare bones. Necron Lords are even hinted to have sentience, and are able to command legions of his brethren. The cursed part? You're an antithesis to all living beings in the known universe and bar the select individuals (Lords) many Necrons no longer have sentience.
    • The Primarch Ferrus Manus killed a silver dragon in a lava flow and the dragon's metallic skin fused to his arms, covering them with living metal. With his iron hands he could forge weaponry by working the metal with his 'bare' hands and never needed gauntlets in battle, since his hands were already invulnerable. His Space Marines, the Iron Hands legion, have developed a habit of intentionally replacing parts of themselves with cybernetic augmentations in homage to him. However, Ferrus didn't like his metal arms, precisely because they were so useful. In his opinion, he is being made weaker by depending on them and had decided that after the wars were over he would strip the metal off his arms, reassert his own strength and curb his legion's reliance on machine parts. Sadly, he was killed in battle before that could happen and the Iron Hands have gone on trying to fix their 'weakness of the flesh'.
    • The Obliterators embody Body Horror by being a perfect mix of man, demon and machine. It begins with contracting the Obliterator virus, melding with your firearm, generating ammunition for your firearm, developing the ability to absorb other firearms and finally becoming a full-fledged Obliterator. The awesome part is how Obliterators are Walking Armory incarnate, with Bottomless Magazines and the capability to produce and wield any weapon for any situation.
  • Some of the "curses" in the Palladium Fantasy RPG give the character bonuses. For example, Glowing Red Eyes gives you a bonus to intimidation, and Frog Legs allow you to jump great distances.
  • Some cards in Yu-Gi-Oh! have effects that look bad, but can be abused with certain combos. The poster child of this trope, however, is probably Mist Valley Falcon. He can be summoned at no cost, and has a whopping 2000 ATK, which is as high as it gets without drawbacks. The "cursed" part? He can't use that high ATK score without returning one of your cards to your hand. The "awesome" part? Try equipping Big Bang Shot to one of your opponent's monsters before attacking. Yes, you get a powerful attack, and you get to kill one of your opponent's monsters Deader Than Dead! He can also return a Fiendish Chain that you want to use again. That's saving a card. The best part? His effect can be used to trigger Divine Wind of Mist Valley, allowing you to summon something like resident Game-Breaker Reborn Tengu.
    • An even more notorious example is Imperial Order, the only continuous spell negation trap in the game. Its intended downside is that it has a maintenance cost that you have to pay 700 life points during each of your standby phases or it's destroyed. This, however, wound up giving the person using it the option to cancel its effect before their turn really starts, allowing them to play their spell cards when they want to after denying the opponent the chance to play theirs. As spell cards are an important resource to the game (especially in spell based decks), this card gave a massive strategic advantage to the person playing it, resulting in the card being banned.
  • Pathfinder has the Oracle class, divine spellcasters who all are cursed with disabilities. The good news is, these curses come with matching benefits, which get more powerful as you level.
  • Accepting a Geist into your head in Geist: The Sin-Eaters means having a near-demonic old ghost bound to you for the rest of your life and having to put up with seeing ghosts. On the other hand, you get all sorts of cool necromantic powers and, most importantly, if you hadn't accepted the "curse"? You'd be plain old dead. So, naturally, Sin-Eaters tend to see themselves as this In-Universe. Hell, the game's Tagline is "A Storytelling game about Second Chances." It's by far the most optimistic game in the setting (though admittedly, that's a pretty low bar.)
  • The Accursed (subtle!) and Wounded Angel arcs in Chuubo's Marvelous Wish-Granting Engine provide a mixture of neat benefits and unpleasant drawbacks. Wounded Angel relies upon developing physical and mental injuries of various kinds, then gaining powers based on those, while caging something horrible that gets let out if you run out of Divine Health Levels; Leonardo de Montreal, the Wounded Angel pregen, has powers like ripping out his heart to make himself a being of heartless perfection in the dark (it doesn't work in the light because his heart may or may not be fuelling the replacement sun - it's complicated), and holds in that space a nightmare known as the Red World. Accursed, meanwhile, involves becoming imbued with the Power of the Void until you can erase things from reality, but at the same time reality itself is prone to some kind of backlash against you...
    • The tumblr arc Indomitable literally spells out its Curse as something that would be a more legitimate Curse except that it doesn't seem to have any actual drawbacks for you (and there's even a power that lets you inflict the drawbacks on other people).
    Jenna Moran: You’re like one of those vampires whose “dark curse” boils down to being immortal and awesome. Or maybe you’ve got a demon inside you, granting you all kinds of special abilities. It definitely feels very Curse-like but the violins informed people play for you will be pretty small.

    Video Games 
  • Mario Party 3 gave players the Reverse Mushroom as a usable item. When used, it made the target go backwards instead of forwards with their dice roll. While this could be used to hurt a player's progress, it was mostly a Game-Breaker in practice. For one, the most common reason it was used was to move backwards to a Star Space that a player had either just missed, or because it reappeared right behind them when someone else bought a Star. Also, a player under the effects of a Reverse Mushroom could pick which direction they wanted to go if they reached any junction, even if that route could normally not be accessed without a Skeleton Key or a special event. Even the developers realized how broken the Reverse Mushroom was, since it never reappeared after Mario Party 3.
  • The SPARTAN-II and SPARTAN-III super-soldiers in the Halo series are an interesting example. Each one was kidnapped or "recruited" at the age of six (or under), given Training from Hell, and given painful augmentations (which for the IIs, killed or crippled most of them), but became godly badasses in the process. That said, it's a greater than 50% chance of being dead or disabled by your twenties, plus more or less a lifetime of military service against Scary Dogmatic Aliens and La Résistance, even if you can punch through a tank with your bare hands. Not surprisingly, the people who helped create the Spartans, including both the IIs' project head and main trainer, often think about the ethical cost of what they did and sometimes wonder if it was really worth it. However, the Spartans themselves are mostly thankful for the experience and would willing go through it again if they had a choice; of course, they've been pretty much been brainwashed since early childhood be soldiers.
    • When the process of augmentation improves decades later, allowing it to work for adults, there's no shortage of adult volunteers for the SPARTAN-IV program, so even in-universe most think it's awesome and worth the pain and modifications they undergo.
  • The Legend of Zelda has several examples:
    • In The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, you wake a sleeping imp, who curses you for your impudence by halving your magic... although what he actually does is halve your magic cost, effectively doubling your magic. Thanks, buddy!
    • In Link's Awakening, a similar imp "curses" Link with greater inventory room, the idea being that Link now has to carry more stuff, and does this three times.
    • Link's wolf form in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, which he turns into when he enters an area covered with Twilight, and it not only makes a few things a bit simpler, but also has the ability to warp. Although it's played a bit more straight later, when Zant actually does curse Link, locking him in wolf form. When you get the curse removed (and can now freely switch forms), Midna lampshades the fact that the curse has turned out to be quite useful. On the "cursed" side of things, there's the fact that people are frightened of Wolf Link. Besides the first time he goes to Ordon Village in that form though, no one actually tries to attack him or hinder him.
    • Also in Twilight Princess, you see a scene where the Sages attempt to execute Ganondorf, leading him to discover he has the Triforce of Power. Furthermore, the Sages seal him away by sending him to the Twilight Realm, where he ends up turning into a god-like mass of pure power.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, Princess Zelda is cursed into being a ghost. This allows her to fly, turn into a fairy-orb and possess Phantoms, effectively making her physically stronger than she was when she was actually, well, physical.
  • Lampshade Hanging in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door: In order to receive certain (required) abilities, Mario must open locked chests containing demons that dramatically "curse" him with the ability to turn sideways, fold into a paper airplane, etc. Voluntarily, and with no downsides. By the fourth one, Mario can see where things are headed and tellsnote  the chest to just shut up and curse him already. The chest expresses disappointment at not being able to perform his big scene. Mario then relents and lets him do so, after which the chest goes through the motions and then, as an aside, thanks Mario for letting him do his thing. These demons are actually the legendary heroes who sealed away the Big Bad the first time, only to fall victim to said Big Bad's own curse and become demons locked in chests, fated to curse whatever gullible sap they can trick into letting them out. They use a bit of Loophole Abuse to get away with giving curses that are actually beneficial.
  • The Sand Wraith form in Prince of Persia: Warrior Within. The Mask of the Sand Wraith displaces its user in time a few hours, allowing them to meet themselves in the past to avert some unpleasant fate. The mask comes off when the "past" version dies, so you have to end up killing yourself. In gameplay terms, while playing as the Sand Wraith, your health is slowly depleted. While the may sound bad at first, it only depletes to about a quarter of your original health bar. This is at least enough to survive one solid hit from pretty much anything in the game (during the time you use the form). Add on to that the fact that your sand tanks regenerate at a steady rate, and any competent player using this form becomes borderline unkillable because you can just rewind time to heal the tiny bit of health you have.
  • In Pokémon Gold and Silver (and later versions), as an extremely rare occurrence, Pokémon may be infected with Pokérus. This highly infectious disease cannot be cured, though the affected Pokémon will heal naturally in 24 hours. What does this horrible disease do, you ask? They make your Pokémon grow twice as fast than normal, even after the disease goes away (it's actually a bit more complicated than that, but that's the upshot). For this reason, players do well to make sure the disease keeps spreading among their Pokémon.
    • On the subject of Pokémon, the hero in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon never seems to find being turned into a Pokémon really awesome (seeing all the cool powers and stuff they have). However, the hero also rarely ever mentions a desire to go back to human form.
  • In Kingdom Hearts II, when you attempt to use one of the first three (four in the Final Mix/2.5 versions) Drive Forms Sora gets, you occasionally go into AntiForm instead. It comes with dramatically increased agility, the ability to perform absurdly fast and powerful combos that can range across the screen, and of course black, wispy tendrils from your outfit and your hair. The downside? The complete inability to heal while the form is active, receiving double damage, you're unable to kill bosses due to a lacking a combo finisher, and the inability to gain experience while in the form. Thus, while it's incredibly powerful, there are often very good reasons to want to avoid it.
    • On the other hand, after a certain point in the game (the Sora/Roxas fight scene), the number of times you've gone into Anti-Form is directly correlated to your chance of unlocking the most powerful Drive form when you use one of the other three/four Drive Formsnote .
  • Terra in Final Fantasy VI. She considers her magic a curse because it distances herself from others and she fears she may never truly connect with other people. In the meantime, she's the only half-Esper in the world and as such is more or less a demi-god. In fact, until the Big Bad turns himself into a full-fledged god, Terra is arguably the strongest mage on the planet.note  There's also an issue with the fact that magic use by humans really isn't all that weird after the first quarter of the plot. They may not get their powers from the same place she does, but she's not the only human with magic powers, and her existence itself proves that Espers can feel love.
  • Vincent in Final Fantasy VII. He let the chick he was crushing on let her boyfriend turn her into a science project, and when he objected he got turned into one too. He considers it a fitting punishment. The experiments have made him immortal, so he gets to spend eternity in his late 20s, and allow him to transform into various demons that can kill normal enemies in a single hit.
  • Ashton Anchors, in Star Ocean: The Second Story/Evolution gets possessed by a two-headed dragon (Thanks to the party), its heads being fused onto his back. Outside of making him look like a freak, it's not nearly as terrible as it sounds, as the dragons are actually rather friendly (Mostly showing hostility towards one another, which is a source of irritation for him), and while despite being capable of taking complete control of him, only choose to do so on one occasion where they had something important to say. On the plus side, they help him in battle by using symbology and breathing fire and ice at foes with his strongest killer move.
    • When presented with a method of removing the dragons in an optional quest, he ultimately chooses to not go through with it as it would kill them, having developed a soft spot for them in the meantime. However, he's still stuck with them in the sequel game that takes place two years later, in which they've also learned some new attacks, such as a lunging bite that makes their host do a comical faceplant.
  • The main character in Dragon Quest VIII survived the curse placed on Trodain due to a curse placed on him as a baby, that had the side effect of making the cursed immune to any other curses. In an odd case of Gameplay and Story Integration, this even makes him immune to the status effect "Cursed".
  • The protagonist of Baldur's Gate I and II (and his brother) is "cursed" with supernatural powers due to being descended from an evil god. Depending on which character alignment the player picks at character creature, and on later choices during the game, the character's divine powers differ and grow. "Good" characters may view the ability to destroy the universe as a curse, evil ones probably don't.
  • Nero's arm in Devil May Cry 4 is demonic, which makes him go to great lengths to hide it from his fellow demon slayers. He's also not happy with the fact that he has a demonic arm, but in all honesty, it's the main reason why he's such a badass, since it bestows all kinds of asskicking powers. He finally lampshades it at the end of the game, admitting that it's pretty useful in spite of the grief it causes him.
  • In Drakengard, there is an idiosyncratic price a human in a pact with some eldritch creature has to pay for that creature's services. Caim and Leonard have obvious curses - they have lost their voice and sight respectively - but Seere loses his "time", making him immortal. While it is arguable that no one wants to live forever (especially as a six year old child), Seere has already lost anyone dear to him by this point, and it is very hard to say this is a real, immediate curse compared to the others. The hierarch Verdelet also isn't very cursed, since all he lost was his body hair; unfortunately, his condition isn't very awesome either since his dragon pact-partner happens to be petrified.
    • Seere's condition normally would be considered awesome until you take into account that there is a pedophile and an insane cannibalistic child killer in the party...
    • Drakengard II gets some of this, too. The knight generals all have pact partners. One lost her appeal, and is now repulsive in all aspects, making anyone who meets her immediately loathe her. One lost his sense of taste, and now spends much of his time gluttonously stuffing himself in a futile attempt to regain the pleasures of eating. And one lost... his masculinity. "Becoming incredibly effeminate" isn't exactly a huge curse compared to some of the others in the series, or even in the same game.
  • Both Kain and Raziel from the Legacy of Kain series get this, but Raziel is doubly cursed with awesome - first for being a vampire, and second by being thrown into a maelstrom of acid water and turned into a vampire-hunting soul wraith. As a result he loses many of his vampiric weaknesses, such as his aversion to water, weakness in sunlight and need to drink blood, while still keeping his useful abilities, like super-strength and (limited) flight.
    • This is a reoccurring plot point in the series; whether or not vampirism is a curse or a blessing, whether they are parasites or gods, whether they are banished from god's grace or liberated from the wheel of fate. The true result of Raziel's cursed with awesome is that because of his curse, he is the one creature in existence with free will.
  • In NetHack, many "cursed" items can be helpful if applied right, for example a cursed genocide scroll will create monsters instead of kill them, allowing for many useful tactics, such as nurse dancing. (Nurses will raise your HP maximum if they attack you when you have no armor on, surround yourself with lots of nurses and... works best on no teleport levels, so the nurses can't flee.)
  • From the NetHack mod, Slash EM, there's the Lycanthrope character class. Lycanthropes are permanently cursed with randomly turning into a wolf. They take large penalties to how much they can carry in a game where you need to be Crazy-Prepared. They also have greatly increased hunger, requiring them to constantly be on the lookout for more food. Despite that.. It's AWESOME. The food penalty is countered by insane regeneration and being a werewolf is just plain fun. Compared to other classes agonizing choices over how to fight, being able to maul the face off anyone you meet is straight up cathartic.
  • And based on Slash'EM, there is Slash'EM Extended that has enemy werecockatrices. A player infected by them may randomly turn into a cockatrice and turn enemies to stone with melee attacks.
  • The Elder Scrolls
    • Daggerfall has lycanthropy. Becoming a lycanthrope grants massive, permanent stat boosts, and disease immunity in exchange for uncontrollable bloodlusts every week or so. Thing is, "stat boosts" translate to "your character is a god" and "weekly bloodlusts" translate as "a piss-easy quest to get a ring that satisfies them." Or simply mauling some random, nameless NPC on the streets, which are infinite and literally spawn behind you every second. While laughing at the stings of non-silver-weapon-wielding guards. In fact... why even wait a week to do that?
    • Morrowind has the Corprus Disease, created by Dagoth Ur using the power of the heart of a dead god. The disease leaves sufferers as The Ageless with Ideal Illness Immunity, as well as dramatically increased Strength and Endurance, but also serves them with a nasty case of Body Horror and a severe loss of mental faculties. Naturally, the Nerevarine is inflicted with the disease as part of the main quest. After seeking out a wizard who is working on a cure, you'll have the negative aspects of the disease "cured," but the positive aspects of agelessness and immunity to disease remain. This is actually a required part of the prophecy to be the Nerevarine as well. As the prophecy puts it: "Neither blight nor age can harm him/The Curse-of-Flesh before him flies..." ("Curse-of-Flesh" is the prophetic name for Corprus.)
    • Likewise in Oblivion the player can be turned into a vampire by contracting the disease from fighting other vampires. There's a relatively lengthy sidequest to get a cure, but most players won't use the cure even after getting it because the free powers gained from vampirism greatly outweigh the disadvantages.
    • Skyrim has both vampirism and lycanthropy.
      • Vampirism turns the Player Character into a vampire with a number of stat bonuses and useful abilities. Vampires are immune to disease and poison, are harder to detect when sneaking, and spells from the Illusion school of magic become more powerful. You also gain a resistance to frost elemental damage. Finally, vampires have a number of special powers including night vision, Vampire's Seduction, and invisibility. Vampire Lords, added in Dawnguard, are even more powerful, possessing greater combat abilities and Blood Magic, as well as a special perk tree granting even more abilities. That said, vampires have a few notable weaknesses: Vampires can move around in sunlight, but are weakened significantly, fire damage does more damage than usual, and vampires need to feed on blood every once in a while, otherwise their weaknesses (not to mention their inhumanity) become more pronounced, although their powers become stronger too.
      • Lycanthropy allows the player disease immunity and the ability to become a 300-pound killing machine once per day. As with Vampire Lords, Werewolves gain a special perk tree in Dawnguard. Werewolves are absolutely brutal Lightning Bruisers with incredible speed, strength and durability, as well as the ability to heal by eating dead bodies. Werewolves can also use "howls" with special attributes including causing people to run in fear, detect living things from incredible distances, and call in wolves or other werewolves as allies. Unlike vampirism, you have complete control over when and where you enter your werewolf form. The only downside in gameplay terms is that you take more damage from enemies who use silver weapons (which is extremely rare) and you can no longer gain the minor boost effects from resting in a bed. The only reason Lycanthropy counts as a curse is because the Daedric Prince Hircine gets claim to your soul when you die; one Werewolf character, Kodlak, laments that his lycanthropy will prevent him from entering Sovngarde, the Nord afterlife. That said, other Werewolf characters are warmer to the idea of an afterlife of eternal hunting, although given who these characters are... (Also, on another note, another Daedric prince can lay claim to your soul during the main game as well. This throws the final downside of "determined afterlife" in question as well.) And, since the Dragonborn has the immortal soul of a dragon (or several, if you've been busy), rather than the standard mortal affair, it's possible that would never have been an issue in the first place.
    • Player characters in The Elder Scrolls Online are Soul Shriven — their bodies are alive, but their souls have been taken by Molag Bal. The most obvious effect of this being that they can't permanently die, in a setting that normally doesn't operate under Death Is Cheap. While this would border on And I Must Scream if they were a slave in Coldharbour as planned, since they managed to escape, this means that any time they die, they can come back at the nearest wayshrine, or, if they have a sufficiently powerful filled soul gem, use it up to kickstart their body and revive on the spot, in either case without much worse than some banged-up equipment and minor bruising. On top of this, their nature grants them access to Soul Magic, starting off with an innate ability to cast a version of Soul Trap that's better than the version normal protagonists from main-series games can learn. Everyone you meet who is aware of their state still treats them as dealing with a terrible burden, but these are some pretty awesome upsides.
    • From the lore, the story of Wheedle. Wheedle was the 13th child of the king of Valenwood, and so had little chance to claim any wealth or titles, so he sought wealth, power and a legacy that would be remembered for all time. By chance, Wheedle came upon a poor beggar and saved her from some angry townsfolk, only for her to reveal to his surprise that she was in fact Namira, the Daedric Prince of disease and revulsion. After he begged her for power and patronage for a whole month, she laughed at the irony of his situation, and gave him three "blessings": disease, pity, and disregard. He could take up any disease that had visible symptoms, so long as he had one. Horrified, Wheedle saw them as curses individually, and altogether horrible. Forced to turn away from his noble heritage, he became a beggar who wandered Tamriel, only to find that he became so pitiable, so tragic, that no-one could walk by his huddled and wretched form without being urged to throw a coin at his feet, and subsequently Wheedle never needed for money - in fact, he became ironically rather wealthy in his own right. He simultaneously became ignored by all, and the people said things around Wheedle that they wouldn't dare say with anyone else in earshot, and soon Wheedle also knew all the closest secrets of all of Tamriel's most powerful citizens. Wheedle has long since passed on from Nirn, but his name is legendary as the Beggar Prince, his exploits chronicled in books, and to this day it is oft said that if you want to know anything about anyone, you need only ask the beggars, as they know all the little secrets of the people and their lives. In a twisted way, Namira granted him everything he ever wanted: wealth, power and a legacy that would last for all time.
  • Adelle of Final Fantasy Tactics A2, as well as a few other characters are Gifted, which grants them unique powers and nigh immortality, but not all can control it. Adelle initially agonizes over it after her village was wiped out by a plague that didn't affect her. It's also something that makes her desirable by the bad guys, with her consent or not. Many of the other Gifted are outcasts of one kind or another, either because people don't trust them or because of their own desire. Lennart for example states that he couldn't bear being friends with normal people that die within a normal lifespan anymore. She feels that she's been Blessed with Suck at first, but as she meets other Gifted and is given their power for her unique class (Heritor), she comes to realize it's not so bad after all—which allows her to release her own Gift—"the power of life, in all its forms and splendor". Which is just a free Regen spell.
  • In Metal Slug 3's second stage, getting attacked by a zombie turns you into a zetta slow zombie... but in return, you become immune to human attacks and you gain a special attack in which you vomit a powerful blast of blood.
  • In F-Zero X, machines with E-ranked grip aren't that bad... in fact, using one allows you to (ab)use several Game Breakers that will let you take massive shortcuts and gain ridiculous bursts of speed.
  • When Samus defeats the Omega Pirate in Metroid Prime, it falls on her, "corrupting" her Power Suit into the Phazon Suit. The "beneficial side effects" (decreased damage and immunity to blue Phazon) from this corruption are all that the player ever experiences, and the only negative consequences show up in the sequel, in a bit of Retcon. The Phazon corruption of Samus herself in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, on the other hand, has both ups and downs, in that she can use it to enter the very powerful Hypermode, which uses health as ammo and can lead to total corruption if not managed well.
  • Kubikiri Basara, first appearing in Samurai Shodown 3, is a ghost. In the living world, Basara can teleport through shadow, transform into a shadowy bat, and control his bladed disc with his mind. He wants his "accursed" existence to end so he can stay with his beloved Kagaribi in the afterlife. In his SS5 ending, he recovers a repressed memory: he, not Zankuro, had killed Kagaribi.
  • In Mega Man Battle Network 3, the bug associated with the BusterMAX program is basically Power Incontinence; it causes MegaMan to use all of his uploaded chips in rapid fire at the beginning of the turn, aiming and timing be damned. The GameFAQs community held a contest to see who could produce the best character with that glitch as a stipulation.
    • There is another bug in Battle Network 4 where instead of firing of a powerful buster shot, you drop a rock cube onto the field in front of you. (This seems like Blessed with Suck, until you realize that chips like Poltergeist and the JunkMan Soul Synchro both like objects on the field. Also, if timed correctly, an enemy running into a rock cube as it is created takes 100 damage and destroys the rock cube. This is better than most chips in the game.)
  • Corporal Matthew Kane of Quake IV is captured and painfully transformed into a cyborg by the Strogg about halfway through the game, but he is rescued by his squadmates before the mind-controlling chip inserted into his brain during the "Stroggification" process can be activated. You can see the whole disturbing process here. Despite having most of his organic body crudely replaced with cybernetic parts, his increased strength, speed, and resistance to Strogg technology such as teleporters (which are instantly fatal to regular humans, as demonstrated when one soldier attempts to go through and it rips him in two) are huge bonuses - especially as his aforementioned resistance to teleporters and the like render him the only member of the Rhino Squad capable of destroying the enemy.
  • The hero in the platformer game Demon Returns in Game Center CX 2/Retro Game Challenge 2 seems to be a form of this: he's turned into a purple imp-like demon by the Big Bad of the game, but all it does is to give him sharp claws from which he can fire small tornadoes when sufficiently powered up and the ability to use any enemies he runs across as his personal form of transportation. It does seem to hinder him in that he needs to consume apples constantly to stay alive, though.
  • Jak and Daxter: After two years of torture and experimentation, Jak gains Dark Eco powers. The Baron and the Oracle warn that it will drive him insane and kill him horribly, people who watch him in action are terrified, and Count Veger in Jak 3 concludes that because of it Jak is an abomination who deserves only death. Nevertheless, it makes him immensely powerful and exactly what he was intended to be: the only thing capable of taking down the Metal Head leader.
  • The Ghouls in Fallout were created by being subjected to a megadose of radiation, most commonly during The Great War, when most who couldn't get to a Vault were heavily exposed. The downside is that they look like the living dead (which leaves them subject to much discrimination), and their brains may eventually decay, causing them to go feral. The upside is that they are healed by radiation and have much longer lifespans than any other normal human, with pre-war ghouls still common over 280 years later. Almost all cases of ghoulification are against the subject's will though, since in addition to the aforementioned discrimination, exposure to massive doses of radiation usually leads to death.
    • Similarly, Super Mutants are also long-lived, with the added bonus of super strength and even increased intelligence in rare cases. In exchange however, you lose almost all memories of your past self, are stripped of free will, and it is all too likely that you will become far less intelligent than you were before being dipped into the FEV tank. Also worth noting is that all Super Mutants are sterile, and that all current Super Mutants (in the West Coast at least) will most likely die out eventually. All told, becoming a Super Mutant does have its advocates, since some people did volunteer for the process back in the original Fallout game. Marcus himself states that he prefers being a Super Mutant to being human because it leaves him less susceptible to petty emotions like "hatred" and "jealousy".
      • According to Marcus (if you choose to set him up with a hooker at the brothel in New Reno), Super Mutants are not actually sterile, "it just takes a few years for the juices to get flowing again after being dipped," though he might actually be referring to sex drive, rather than fertility. The explanation for why mutants are sterilenote  doesn't leave a lot of wiggle-room.
  • In the PC version of PowerSlave (aka Exhumed in Europe), mummies sometimes launch a spell which turns the player into one of them for a few second - and he can launch a very powerful attack meanwhile.
  • Female lead Reimi Saionji in Star Ocean: The Last Hope was genetically enhanced as part of a project to enable humans to live on the nuclear-wasteland surface of Earth. She has a superhuman immune system and healing ability which even allows her to recover from having most of her body turned to stone. She feels guilty about it because as a little girl, she survived severe radiation poisoning when some of her friends didn't. This was aggravated by the fact that she still felt the effects of the radiation poisoning as her body adjusted and she was then forced to listen to her friends parents rant about how she should have died with them.
  • In Devil Summoner 2: Raidou Kuzunoha vs. King Abaddon, its revealed that Gouto's role as The Mentor is meant to be a punishment for an unknown crime he committed. Because forcing him to help his descendents become true Summoners and protect the world from evil is such a bad thing. That said, he'd probably be happier if it didn't come with the obligatory requisite of being forced to assume the shape of a cat. Also, the "punishment" actually is to live through his protegés' lives... until he inevitably sees them die.
  • Alex Mercer from [PROTOTYPE] begins the game furious and vengeful concerning his condition which lets him run up walls, glide, pick up cars, become immune to falling damage and be generally nigh-invincible. On the other hand, he can also eat people to regenerate faster and gain their knowledge and memories, it also comes with the unpleasant side effect of his victims still existing inside his head...
    • Well, at least James Heller didn't complain about his condition.
  • At the start of the game, the Curse of the Worgen from World of Warcraft transforms the player into a bloodthirsty and mindless werewolf. Shortly after, they receive a partial cure which gives them back their human mind, though it's specifically noted to be temporary, with the risk of reverting to the werewolf mind at any moment still present. But then you get a better cure with the Tal'doren ritual, which permanently "rebalances" the player, allowing the player to not only keep their mind, but also to shift between human and wolf forms at will. Lore-wise, maintaining the human mind requires significant willpower and self-control, but for the most part, Gilnean worgen are just humans with the power to transform into stronger and faster werewolves. Even after it's proven they will retain control and the ability to transform between human and worgen, some NP Cs still treat becoming worgen as a Fate Worse than Death.
    • There are quite a few encounter specific debuffs that actually make the target more powerful and are often key to defeating the boss. Vaelstrasz the Corrupt, for example, gives all players in the raid "Essence of the Red", which increases the players' mana/energy/rage/runic/focus regeneration by huge amounts.
    • Undead with their own will (Forsaken and Death Knights) can be considered cursed, but don't have any real drawback gameplay wise while enjoying some of the perks of their new existence, much like the Worgen.
      • The game's original version of the Forsaken played this very straight. Permanent immunity to sleep, charm, and fear, no need to breathe, and the ability to speak the Alliance's common tongue, making you an obvious liason for combined faction operations. In exchange, you're vulnerable to holy and undead-affecting spells, have a widespread and powerful enemy NPC faction specializing in exactly that, and Alliance players can kill you pretty easily if they want to. ...As it turned out, they wanted to, and the feeling was mutual, so the races came out more PvP balanced.
    • Northrend also brought us the backstory about the "Curse of Flesh", which mutated the Titan's creations to be easier to manipulate for the old gods. The result: the evolution of Humanity, dwarves and gnomes.
    • There's also a series of weapons that can "curse" you with extra Critical Hit chance.
    • Several enemies hit you with debuffs that allow you to deal extra damage. Often (but not always) they also deal damage to you in addition, basically invoking Cast from Hit Points.
  • Most of Wario's transformations fall into this category. Being on fire isn't that bad if it makes you invincible and allows you to burn away blocks blocking your path.
  • The corruptions in ADOM are supposed to be a mixed bag of advantages and disadvantages and most of them are actually quite nasty to have (even the advantages tending towards Blessed with Suck), but at least one is extremely useful to have even though it theoretically has a huge disadvantage. It makes you gradually degenerate into a caveman by periodically raising all your physical attributes and at the same time lowering your mental ones. This would theoretically make you a gibbering mindless mass of muscle, attribute-wise. However, there is a trainer in a town in the game who can help you increase any of your attributes. The higher the attribute is already, the harder it is to raise it, and doubly so once it hits its "natural maximum". But it's easy to re-train your mental attributes to their old level (or at least a reasonable level) each time they've fallen while letting your physical attributes go on increasing uninhibited because the corruption doesn't care how high they are already.
  • The Sims 2 expansions have several life states that a Sim can become, most with several different nifty traits, but only Knowledge Sims want to become them. Indeed, most infected Sims want nothing more than to be cured of their weirdness. While justified in some cases (becoming a werewolf or a zombie involves a drastic personality shift), many states have such cool side effects that it's hard to understand why you'd want to get rid of the "affliction":
    • Vampires' needs don't decay at night, nor by day if they're asleep in a coffin. They also don't age.
    • Plant Sims need only water, sunshine, and "love" (social interaction) to live— they never get tired, commune with plants, and can asexually produce young with all their own skills and talents.
    • Witches and warlocks can perform Functional Magic with many useful effects.
  • The Sims 3 also has life states falling under this category. Unlike the previous game, becoming an "occult" no longer is considered a curse in and of itself, but some life states do balance certain advantages and disadvantages, so they at least count as this trope.
    • Vampires can only regenerate their "thirst" need (equivalent to hunger for normal sims) by consuming plasma, which can either come from "drinking" from other sims, drinking plasma juice, or eating plasma fruit (Late Night only). They are also weakened by spending too long in sunlight (which drains their powers and causes their thirst meter to drain faster), unless they have the Immortal lifetime happiness reward. On the upside, they get a learning boost during nighttime hours, can run faster than ordinary humans, have a very long lifespannote , and have a set of social interactions that can play with the minds of other sims a great deal.
    • Werewolves in Supernatural are said to be cursed (with the life state spread via a "Cursed Bite"), but the benefits of the life state generally outweigh the problems. The problems being that the wolf form isn't pretty, they're forced into said wolf form every full moon, the wolf form has several antisocial interactions by default, it's impossible to design a wolf-form sim's wardrobe, and the wolf form (but not the human form) is slow to recover Energy through sleep. The benefits: werewolves have an adult lifespan 50% longer than an ordinary human Sim, an increased chance to win fights in wolf form (and, unless they're somehow locked out of the form—say, due to pregnancy—they'll transform into the wolf form to fight), a slower Energy drain and a +30 positive moodlet while in the wolf form, and the ability to hunt for gems, metals, and bugs on public property (and also their own property). Transforming into the wolf form can also cure certain magical afflictions, such as the Tragic Clown and even permanent zombification—and with few exceptions, they can transform freely between forms. Going both ways in this regard is that a Sim can't get pregnant in wolf form, so any WooHoo while the female partner is in wolf form will never result in pregnancy. On the one hand, it's an excellent contraceptive; on the other hand, it becomes a problem if your Sim is trying for a baby...or is already pregnant, as pregnancy locks a Sim into human form. In gameplay terms it's generally better to stay in the wolf form unless your Sim is trying to get some sleep, trying to do something the game won't let you do in wolf form, or you want to leave the Sim on autopilot for a while.
    • Sims with the Unlucky or Loser trait are cursed with awesome in a much more literal way. While they occasionally receive negative moodlets and are generally less successful than others sims, they are also incapable of dying by any means other than old age: the Grim Reaper will refuse to collect them. If a sim with one of those traits can find their way around ageing (and several methods exist) will never die. But will be more likely to fail at most things they do because of the effects of the trait.
  • At the start of Mass Effect 2, Shepard dies and is resurrected, meaning s/he now has bulletproof skin, unbreakable bones, super-biotics (Sometimes without having them before), an almost unpoisonable digestive system, enhanced reflexes and numerous other modifications. Any potential moral, psychological or existential problems arising from this are glossed over entirely, leading to Shepard shrugging off nearly every remark relating to his/her death with a witty remark.
    Nassana Dantius: Shepard! But... you're dead!
    Shepard: I got better.
    • The Cursed part comes from who revived Shepard in the first place: Cerberus, an incredibly shady organization who happens to be the only one with the budget to bring what was left of Shepard back from the dead. Thus when Shepard wakes up, their hands are completely tied to doing whatever Cerberus tells them to, resulting in a huge rift between their former allies from the first game. It takes until the end of the sequel for Shepard to cut ties completely.
    • By Mass Effect 3, there are a number of implications that Shepard is less comfortable with all of this than s/he initially let on. There's a conversation at one point with EDI about transhumanism, during which Shepard shows discomfort at the idea that his/her cybernetics might make him/her a Transhuman. Then, in the attack on the Cerberus HQ, after seeing some videos of the Illusive Man talking about attempts to bring him/her back to life, Shepard reveals that s/he's had heavy doubts as to whether or not s/he is really the real Shepard, or just a VI who thinks that s/he's Shepard.
    • In Mass Effect 3, Joker invokes this trope when talking about human biotics facing discrimination for their powers. That said, some human biotics really do suffer from being Blessed with Suck, since in addition to suffering prejudice, they have very serious medical issues, at least before the better implants were developed.
  • In Planescape: Torment, Ignus was punished for torching a district of Sigil by being made into a living portal to the Plane of Fire. Turns out that he thoroughly enjoys being able to burn himself (and everything around himself) to his heart's content.
  • In the LucasArts Simulation Game Afterlife, both Heaven and Hell have respective disasters in which flying animals fly around and defecate on Heavenly Rewards and Hellish Punishments, causing them to have a drastic increase in Bad Vibes. One problem, however: Hell is improved by Bad Vibes, so constantly deploying the Bats Out Of Hell 'disaster' is a positive. The game itself says, "[...] After all, the only thing worse than being in Hell is being in Hell while covered in bat droppings."
  • In Odin Sphere, the people of a fallen kingdom were transformed into anthropomorphic rabbits. The upside is that they get ageless immortality, assuming Armageddon is averted. With the world reborn, two of the main characters, who become these creatures, wished to live a normal life as humans after several thousand years, and so succeeded in the end.
  • Sveta of Golden Sun: Dark Dawn feels this way about being an Adept who can read minds. And a beast(wo)man who can turn into a wolf in combat and start chucking bosses across the room. Then there's the princess of Morgal. And this gets lampshaded by the other player characters every time.
  • Fenris of Dragon Age II. He had lyrium tattoos burned into his skin in an incredibly painful process, resulting in memory loss and chronic pain. The result of the tattooing gives him the ability to reach into a man's chest and effortlessly pull out his heart, as well as turning him into a plain badass and a killing machine when built right.
    • In the DLC "Legacy" it's revealed that Hawke's father Malcolm felt that his magic was a burden and that he hoped his children would not be mages. When at least one of his children did turn out to have magic he took great pains to teach them that with great power Comes Great Responsibility.
  • Lagging in online games can be an advantage, depending on how the game handles it. In some games, it makes the person lagging almost unpredictable in movement, letting them do roughly this
  • The player character of Dark Souls is under the effects of a curse that spontaneously brings the victim back from the dead, but saps his or her humanity every time it happens.
  • In Retro Game Challenge, the opening of the game features Game Master Arino doing the incredibly evil act of *gasp* turning the player into a kid and sending them back in time to The '80s. Anyone who really was a kid in the 1980s thought that this was awesome for the nostalgia. Anyone who wasn't a kid in the 1980s thought this was awesome just cause it is.
  • In Never Dead the protagonist is "cursed" with immortality and can regrow the rest of his body from his head if given a few minutes. Though it can end up becoming a legitimate curse, as he can end up becoming a digested pile of ooze that, while still sentient, is incapable of regenerating and has him stuck in that form forever.
  • In Neverwinter Nights 2: Mask of the Betrayer the Knight-Captain is afflicted by a curse that requires him/her to periodically consume spirits or die. Whether this is Cursed With Awesome or Blessed with Suck depends on how you approach it. An evil character who sees it as a blessing and eats spirits willy-nilly will find that the more souls they eat the faster they die. However, if the KC approaches the curse with practical restraint (pushing one into good-aligned) can get most of the benefits with few of the side effects.
  • In Warhammer 40,000: Rites of War, most of the Eldar relics you find have unreservedly beneficial effects, except for one, the Armor of Gorhu, which makes it impossible for the unit wearing the armor to gain any experience, and causes every adjacent friendly unit to lose two points of leadership, but also makes the wearer unkillable. But since the armor can only be found in the very last scenario of the campaign mode, by which time all your units are at maximum experience anyway, the inability to gain experience doesn't really matter, leaving only the leadership penalty, which is a nuisance, but nowhere near enough of one to negate the fact that the unit wearing the Armor is unkillable.
  • In Rogue Legacy, some traits that may sound detrimental to your heroes are either harmless or wind up being beneficial. For instance, a hero with A.D.H.D. will move much faster than normal, while a hero with peripheral arterial disease won't trigger spike traps due to having "no foot pulse"note .
  • in Atelier Iris 2: The Azoth of Destiny Gray is a dragon slayer cursed into the form of a dragon-man, and while a dragon killer becoming a dragon may be an uncomfortable idea, it has given him powers he would never have had as a human and since he is famous and his story is widely known, he is accepted everywhere so he doesn't even have the excuse of being an outcast after being turned into a monster. At the end of the game after he kills the one who cursed him, he says its better he didn't change back as he would lose all the dragon powers he gained and they will need all the power they can get to fight Palaxius.
  • The Red Bull X racing prototype machines from Gran Turismo 5 and 6 fit this trope to a T. They literally outclass any and every car in any race where there's no restrictions put in effect. Specifically, these machines have astoundingly phenomenal stats in every category that a land-based vehicle that isn't powered by a jet engine can offer. Braking, top speed, acceleration, handling, you name it. Unfortunately, these same freakishly overpowered stats make them extraordinarily difficult to drive in A-Spec mode (AKA the mode where you directly drive the vehicle yourself), because the cars' monstrous reflexes make them way too easy to go off course and crash. Imagine driving these beasts in the Nürburgring in any configuration; unless you devote yourself to mastering the controls of these cars, it will most definitely take YEARS of trial-and-error to get used to the ludicrously phenomenal performance of these racing machines, let alone driving them in exceptionally difficult courses such as Monaco (Côte d'Azur in the GT universe) and the aforementioned Nürburgring. Interestingly, your AI driver in B-Spec Mode (AKA the mode where you play as racing team director to your AI buddies) has absolutely no difficulty in handling these cars, driving around any course (except probably Monaco thanks to the notoriously cramped configuration of the course) like they were nothing but toy cars.
  • In Mortal Kombat, Shang Tsung was cursed to wither and die unless he consumed souls. Turns out that forcing an evil wizard to kill people is not that big of a drawback to him, and it comes with the side effect of allowing him to absorb the powers of those he vanquishes.
  • In Chrono Trigger, Frog is a human squire who was turned into, well, a frog by Magus. Although Frog initially regarded his new form as a curse, he later realized that being an anthropomorphic form has kickass side-effects, like increasing your strength, and making your tongue long and versatile enough to use it effectively in battle. Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!.
  • Prior to becoming friends with Sonic the Hedgehog, this was how Blaze the Cat felt about her pyrokinesis, as it brought her nothing but loneliness and misery.
    Blaze: I am the guardian of the Sol Emeralds... It is a fate that forces me to live with my curse, my flames... Because of my powers, I have always been alone... It's also why I must do this alone! It is my responsibility!
  • Talion from Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor has been banished from death, unable to pass on and reunite with his deceased family. Of course, this also means he's got a generous array of wraith powers, which he uses to wreak havoc on the Black Captains, the monstrous beings who killed his family, and the Always Chaotic Evil Uruk under their command. This trope is addressed somewhat when it is revealed later in the story that the Mouth of Sauron was trying to cast the "curse" upon himself but messed up the ritual. The wraith played up the "curse" story to manipulate Talion.
  • Mathias the Masterer, a premium general in Dawn of the Dragons, was such a huge example of The Slacker that the gods themselves were offended. So offended that they made him immortal and declared that his life would only end after he became The Ace at everything. As long as there is a single skill he has yet to master, he will never be able to die. Mathias considers it a curse because human minds just aren't able to handle living forever.
  • Monster Hunter 4 introduces the Frenzy Virus, which infects monsters and sets off their "rage mode" permanently. As for human hosts, the target is slowly infected over time, and when the infection meter maxes out, their natural health recovery stops. However, if the infectee does enough damage to monsters while infected, they not only recover, but also gain offensive boosts. In fact, the post-Frenzy boosts are vital to the usage of Chaotic Gore Magala weapons, which both have Critical Hit and "feeble hit" chances, and the post-Frenzy boost turns the feeble hit chance into additional crit chance for the duration of the buff; in other words, if you're using a CGM weapon, you want to get infected.
  • When you face Scissorwoman in Clock Tower 3 you'll notice your auto-aim has been disabled for the fight. This is the opposite of a problem, since the game's normally mandatory auto-aim feature quite frankly sucks: it consists of rigidly aiming you at an enemy to charge your attack but doesn't track them or let you move, meaning you can't follow them when they casually walk out of the way. With Scissorwoman you can aim where she is going instead and unleash a fully charged attack when she walks into it, making her by far the easiest enemy in the entire game.
  • Discussed in Discworld Noir. Lewton isn't very happy about becoming a werewolf, but Carlotta (who infected him) says it's a great gift. It does turn out to be pretty useful.
  • Atelier Rorona has an example of a trait that's usually negative, but turns out to be positive in one specific case. There is a trait called "Narrow Range", which, if alchemized onto an item, reduces the amount of targets it will hit. You will usually try to avoid getting it onto your items. There is also an item called the Tera Bomb, which deals huge damage but has one flaw: its range is so big, it will also hit your own party, often resulting in a Total Party Wipe. Alchemizing a Tera Bomb with one level of Narrow Range will shrink the blast radius just enough to leave your side unharmed, while still being big enough to usually get all enemies. A Tera Bomb with Narrow Range can easily become a Game-Breaker if you add a few other positive traits that don't expand the range back again.
  • Dion, the hero of Alphadia Genesis 2 was born as an "accursed" in his world due to being able to wield Black Energi. As he speaks with his dying father at the beginning of the game, he assures him he never once regretted being an "accursed" because no one in his family or village looked down on him or treated him differently. He's later able to harness the positive aspects of his powers throughout the game.
  • The Grineer from Warframe are an entire race of human clones programmed to be fanatically loyal to the Twin Queens, which, thanks to damaged DNA sources, get worse and worse with each successive generation. Occasionally, the production line will churn out a Grineer with more severe defects than most; in some cases (such as Clem and the members of the Steel Meridian) these defects include free will, compassion, and a serious capacity for kicking ass.
  • Killer Instinct has Sabrewulf, a scientist turned werewolf who is desperately trying to look into a means of reverting the process. Except under the horrifying appearance and seemingly uncontrollable animal behavior, Sabrewulf is fully capable of self-control and his physical abilities have done nothing but improve. There is even an ending in the 2013 version that results in him admitting that it is actually awesome, giving up on a cure and keeping his current form AND his past intellect.
  • The Hero of Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap gets cursed into the form of a Lizard Man, and gains other forms along the way. Getting turned into various animal humanoids is a rather small price to pay for Fire Breath, immunity to heat, Ceiling Cling powers, Flight, Underwater Breathing, and Super Strength.
  • Terraria: The Clothier, after you save him, still can use Shadowflame to defend himself.
  • In the good ending of Disgaea: Hour of Darkness, Seraph Lamington turns Flonne into a Fallen Angel as punishment for aiding the demons in attacking Celestia, meaning that she can stay with Laharl and Etna and has no other effects beyond a wardrobe change. Justified, since Flonne's "betrayal" had been part of Lamington's plan to bring about peace between the Netherword and Celestia. Calling it a punishment was merely a case of keeping up appearances.
  • By the end of South Park: The Fractured but Whole we learn the origins of the New Kid's incredibly powerful (and versatile) farts: They are a side-effect of the medication that their parents sneak into their food to lessen the effects of their real super-power: the ability to quickly gain online followers.
  • in The Witcher franchise, some children, usually in some sort of way kidnapped or otherwise forced into this position, are subject to the "trial of grasses", an extremely painful and lethal process which causes mutations, and kills 7 of 10 boys that undergo the process, as well as extensive training, after which they become Witchers. Good effects include: badass monster killing skills, superhuman attributes, extended lifespan, Magic use. Bad effects include: becoming sterile, possible complications from the trial such as when the group uses the trial of grasses to change Uma back into Avallach, where he suffers permanent brain damage, and on the receiving end of a LOT of discrimination.
  • In Final Fantasy XV, Adagium aka the Immortal Accursed aka Ardyn Izunia aka Ardyn Lucis Caelum has absorbed so much Starscourge over his lifetime that he's effectively a Humanoid Daemon. He is a hated cursed individual rejected by his own bloodline and even by the gods themselves. However, his condition also comes with vast powers and immortality, making him effectively a Physical God.

    Visual Novels 
  • Ciel of Tsukihime has Nigh-Invulnerability so long as the vampire Roa remains alive thanks to the world itself, which will not let her die because technically, Ciel = Roa = Alive, and her death would be a paradox. Despite how incredibly useful this is in her line of work, she is dedicated to destroying Roa. Of course, she does have her reasons...
    • Although she can be killed by Shiki cutting her "lines" due to their properties.
  • Archer of Fate/stay night has access to every weapon but the drill-sword Ea at the cost of them all degrading a rank in power. However, he's able to use Broken Phantasms (greatly powering up one's Noble Phantasm at the cost of breaking it) because every weapon is a Noble Phantasm for him.
    • As to why this is a "curse", this power is the external manifestation of his own soul. His soul manifests as a desolate Field of Blades surrounded by gears/flames. Yeah, Archer has issues.
  • Fate/Apocrypha features Rider of Red, AKA Achilles, who is "cursed" with the Curse of Immortality, which makes him invincible to any damage from people who have a lower Divine ranking than he does. This is as ridiculous as it sounds.
  • Hatoful Boyfriend has Anghel Higure. He constantly produces hallucinogens from his own body, which cause a field of hallucination that gets bigger and more effective the more physically active he's being - and he's not immune to them himself. On the one hand, Anghel is constantly tripping and finds it hard to get people to take him seriously or even be nice to him because of how he acts. On the other hand, this ability somehow lets Anghel know way more than by any rights he should. And when even the super-strong Okosan can't fight the physically-enhanced Charon Virus Ryouta, Anghel can by making Ryouta play by the rules of his fantasy world, thus preventing the extinction of humanity.

  • While the Negative Continuity of the series prevents it from being explored too in-depth, this strip of The Non-Adventures of Wonderella ends with Wonderita being cursed so that "any blade she touches shall become as dull as a river-washed stone". The final frame shows somebody futilely trying to chainsaw her to death.
  • Sir Thane from Blooming Faeries is cursed to be irresistible to women who become totally insatiable when he is near. This starts out as a problem since not all the women it attracts are what one would call attractive, at least until the side effect of the curse kicks in and they become incredibly beautiful and large chested.
  • The character Lorelei from Black Tapestries, who almost immediately gets transformed into a werefox with heightened strength (while retaining her capacity for rational thought during most circumstances) and is soon thereafter rendered immortal by Issac's meddling.
  • Prince Sid from Fey Winds is supposedly "cursed" so that whenever he becomes nervous, flustered, or scared, he becomes a dragon. This is, of course, lampshaded.
    Kit:"Sid, in what way is turning into a dragon a terrible curse?"
    • His family has a long tradition of hunting dragons and mounting their heads on the wall.
  • The Corby clan in Rogues of Clwyd-Rhan are "cursed" with the ability to turn into birds. Voluntarily. With absolutely no restrictions or drawbacks involved. The "curse" is broken when another character points out that they can just stop doing it.
  • Bug shows us that getting your hands cut off can be more handy than you think.
  • Words of wisdom from XKCD: Some people consider "may you have an interesting life" to be a curse. One, fuck them, and two, if you were actually cursed in this way...
  • Terezi in Homestuck considers her blindness to be this. Sure, she can't see, but thanks to psychic help from her lusus, she can smell colors, and even read by licking her computer screen. This is only further helped along by her precognitive abilities and talent for manipulation.
    • The Handmaid, Aradia Megido's ancestor, is cursed with Immortality. She is subversion, though; given that she's a Death Seeker and a Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds, she's got genuine reason to consider it a curse. It's a shame her pre-scratch iteration Damara doesn't share those feelings.
  • In El Goonish Shive, Ellen spreads her "curse" to Vlad, turning her from a male bat-like monster into a human woman. Vlad is so happy to be human at all (the pain of trying to transform on her own nearly killed her) that she just decides that she was never a man in her life as far as she was concerned, and remains a woman without complaint.
    • While they started out as Blessed with Suck, Elliot's and Ellen's powers are beginning to turn into this, lighter on the "cursed" and heavier on the "awesome" as time goes on. At the beginning, they were cursed with Power Incontinence (regularly needing to turn into a girl for Elliot, regularly needing to zap people to change their gender (for males) or enhance their "assets" (for females) for Ellen), but it is already beginning to lessen, and in Elliot's case he has gained a superheroine form in which he is pretty much a Flying Brick with a Healing Factor - the only downside being that he still has to be a girl while doing it.
  • Raine from Twokinds suffers from Involuntary Shapeshifting, and relies on a Power Limiter slave cuff to stop her from going full Keidran. However, this also lets her see through magical illusions
  • Goblins
    • Tempts Fate kills a demon lord... almost. Its eye swears to banish Tempts to the deepest level of hell once its body reforms in ten thousand years. In order to ensure this curse comes true, it furthermore curses Tempts with immortality so he can live long enough. Tempts is extremely enthusiastic about the whole thing.
    • Idle can come Back from the Dead once per day, with the caveat that she needs to die once per day. Much as she hates the dying part, she loves that the curse lets her get away with using overpowered Suicide Attack spells.
  • In Bob and George, The Author is Trapped in Another World — except, he realizes, this means Stuff Blowing Up.
  • Richard from Looking for Group - he is cursed, but aware of the awesome and fuels his own curse to keep the awesome.
  • Fae curses are this in Dan and Mab's Furry Adventures. When a Fae puts a curse on you, it's a bright wrist decoration that is a promise of a fae punishment to come at some undetermined point in the future. Fae truly despise anyone else killing their target of revenge before they can enact their vengeance; combine this with the fact that these usually end up being absurd pranks with little harm to them and you have protection from on high for as long as this curse lasts, which can be years, decades, sometimes the rest of your natural life. Dan once had such a curse and abused the hell out of it for his adventuring.
  • Luke Surl: Hmm curse is the ability to see future events but nobody will be able to believe you... Is there a good use for that curse?
  • Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal
    • In strip 2793, someone realises this herself: being cursed by Heaven to die after a year means she's invulnerable until then.
    • Parodied in strip 4080: In Hell, you have to mine the acid mines every day forever — so you get job security and live forever.
  • Zigzagged in Oglaf with a man cursed to be the best in the world at blowjobs. He doesn't quite understand why that's a curse, until the ghost explains that from this point on he'll either be known only as the blowjob guy, or never be able to reveal his talent. Later, the city is threatened by an army that will only leave if the general is defeated in sexual combat and the man uses his ability to defeat the general, leading to him being crowned king and then proceeds to use the power to solve all the kingdom's problems, playing the trope straight in the end.
    • Later a man goes to the "curse emporium" to ask that a man be cursed with lots of awesome sex with hot chicks. He's asked how exactly this is a curse (possibly even by the same spirit who came up with the blowjob curse) and explains that people would be jealous and you wouldn't get a lot of work done. Giving in, the spirit asks who he wants cursed.
    Man: It's me. I'd like to curse myself please.
    Spirit: You couldn't even get someone else to come in and do this for you?
  • Billy Thatcher of morphE awakens as an Obrimos mage capable of telepathic feats, flight, super speed, control of fire and electricity. When he awoke he was a chess grandmaster on his way to the World Chess Championship and the star of a successful reality TV show. These powers are the worst thing to ever happen to him.
  • In Girl Genius, having The Spark sits somewhere between here and Blessed with Suck. On the one hand, you can make reality your bitch in the name of Science! On the other hand, the same disorder makes you crazy enough that Hoist by Their Own Petard and/or being butchered by an angry mob wielding Torches and Pitchforks are the de facto causes of death in your future.
  • Ara's curse in Penny Blackfeather makes you incredibly magically powerful, blue-haired and generally cool-looking, although there's a small matter of turning into a parrot outside GoblinValley and the Superpowered Evil Side lurking over your shoulder.
  • In the first arc of Dominic Deegan, Dominic is cursed to have a fish fall on him every time he tries to smoke. Dominic takes the curse in exactly the spirit it was intended — his cat, on the other hand...
  • In Chivalry and Knavery Ulf the Barbarian has a cursed ring that makes him invincible, won't come off, and summons monsters a few times a day. Presumably it's supposed to make the wearer tire of constantly fighting or ostracize him as a danger to society, but Ulf considers that a bonus.

    Web Original 
  • Karen of Awkward. is "different". (It's never specified quite what this means, but it seems to cover some degree of geekiness.) On the one hand, it causes Jerkass Ernie to dump her. On the other hand, it happens to be what Dogged Nice Guy Kevin likes about her. He even has a slightly Narm Charm-y speech about it!
  • Pretty much all of the protagonists in Dimension Heroes don't want their Guardian powers, despite how cool some of them think they are.
  • In Paradise, human characters are randomly, permanently transformed into Funny Animals, though the change is Invisible to Normals who still see the Changed as their old selves. For all that the Change is disturbing and life-changing, it brings with it some advantages, including heightened senses, athletic ability, and a bit of Wish Fulfillment body modification (most commonly Breast Expansion). In "Confession Building", it saved a character's life when he was abducted by robbers who shot him in the head—except that since he'd Changed into a shorter form, the bullet passed harmlessly over his real head.
  • Scorpio, one of the main characters of The Questport Chronicles, is turned into a dragon by an evil wizard. He doesn't seem to mind.
  • The title character of the erotic Sword & Sorcery series, The Wulf Archives, is always complaining how the Gods hate him. However, since he has continual fantastic adventures, dozens of exotic lovers who don't mind sharing and has an alternate well endowed lion furry form that femmes lustfully drool for, it's hard to see how exactly he is cursed.
  • From RWBY
    • Qrow Branwen views his semblence as such, and for good reason. Having being The Jinx as a superpower with the Power Incontinence to go with it "makes it hard on friends and family" despite the obvious combat utility...
    • For failing to stop the Big Bad, Ozpin was cursed with Resurrective Immortality. This makes his comment about having made more mistakes than any man, woman and child Not Hyperbole.

    Western Animation 
  • In Ben 10: Alien Force, Azmuth's assistant Albedo, after a failed attempt at replicating the Omnitrix, ended up trapping himself in the form of an albino clone of Ben. He treats it as a horrible condition, even though in practice he is now in a much taller and stronger body (Galvans, his natural species, are around the size of a frog, with matching physical abilities), he retains his Super Intelligence, and still has access to the Voluntary Shapeshifting granted by the Omnitrix (the "Ben Twin" appearance is just his Shapeshifter Default Form which he automatically reverts to most of the time), making it an actually pretty sweet condition from a normal person's point of view. The problem is that Albedo is very arrogant, so he sees the body as ugly and primitive (from his point of view, it's like being trapt in the body of a primate), and can't stand all the side effects caused by being in a teenage body.
  • In Justice League, Jason Blood betrays Camelot to Morgan Lefay, and as a punishment, Merlin binds his soul with the demon Etrigan - thus rendering him virtually immortal. Although Jason perceives this as a terrible curse, it's hard to see the downside, since the demon can't even come out unless Jason recites a specific short poem (although the demon also speaks inside his head constantly, so it can go either way).
    • The downside of the curse isn't directly the immortality. It's the fact that Jason feels so miserable he'd be suicidal, and CAN'T KILL HIMSELF to escape from it. Quick recap: the reason Merlin curses him is that he breaks his oaths of loyalty by betraying his fellow knights in order to be with the woman he (thinks he) loves, Morgan Lefay. She, in turn, promptly reveals she was just using him to give her son Mordred a shot at the throne. So basically, he murdered all his friends to be with a woman who thinks he's little more an inconvenience. You'd probably feel pretty sucky, too.
  • Transformers Animated: Blackarachnia is constantly searching for a way to remove her organic half and angsting about everything she's had to give up because of it. However, her exile was self-imposed, her organic parts give her the ability to generate webbing and paralyzing venom, and her "hideous" body has seduced pretty much every Autobot and Dinobot she's come in contact with.
  • Gargoyles:
    • Demona gets this twice: The first, she and MacBeth are magically bonded so that each is immortal, unless slain by the hand of the other. Second, she was zapped by Puck to turn human in the day time instead of going into the normal stone sleep. Both "curses" were meant to be punishment, but all they did was give Demona more time to plot against her enemies (99.9% of Earth) and gave her foes fewer ways to take her down for good. The curse does have negative effects however; she can't heal like normal gargoyles, so she just suffers until a wound is fully healed at a slow human rate, on top of which the transformation hurts quite a lot. There was the amount of time that she had spent alone as a monstrous pariah, she is likely insane by now.
    • The mutates. Normal humans transformed into anthropomorphic beasts by the unscrupulous Doctor Anton Sevarius. In case of Derek/Talon and his companions Maggie, Fang and Claw, they're turned into feline beast men (and woman) with enhanced strength and senses, bat wings allowing them to fly (as opposed to the gargoyles, who can only glide in air currents) and the ability to generate and shoot electricity, and later there is Wolf from The Pack, transformed into what looks like a werewolf, which instills him with superhuman strength, heightened senses and the ability to see in the dark. It's shown that Talon, Maggie and Claw do not like their new forms and wish they could turn back to humans, which they cannot unless an antidote is produced, which Sevarius refuses to, whereas the two villainous mutates, Fang and Wolf, are shown to love their new forms and wish to remain as they are.
  • The Simpsons:
    • In the episode "The Mansion Family", it was revealed that Mr. Burns suffers from every disease known to man, some of them discovered in him. However, "Three Stooges Syndrome" basically causes the diseases to cancel each other out. Mr. Burns thinks he's indestructible because of this despite the doctor warning him that even a slight breeze can kill him.
      • This later came back to bite him in the boney butt later on in the series when a new disease managed to "shove them through the door" and he suddenly found out how mortal he really was. Turns out it was his hatred and malice keeping him alive all these years, and he blissfully went back to the way he was, much to the chagrin of the rest of the town.
    • In the Treehouse Of Horror episode "A Costume To Your Face", a witch punishes the town by cursing them to become their costumes after they refuse to let her win the costume contest, as she wasn't technically in costume. Of course, for people like Marge (A skeleton), Disco Stu (Steve Martin Arrow), or Hans Moleman (A mole, and also not a costume) it's a true punishment, but people like Bart (Wolfman), Sideshow Mel (Spiderman), or Milhouse (Muscular construction worker) ended up enjoying their "fate" and not wanting to be changed back.
  • An episode of Futurama had Fry get infested with alien worms from an egg salad sandwich. The worms then built a metropolis in his bowels and began overhauling his entire body, bringing him to a level of peak mental and physical capabilities. Everybody else treats this like a horrible affliction and resolves to remove his worms, but Fry thinks this is the best thing that's ever happened to him.
    • Incidentally the application of this trope also explained why no one else was eating bathroom sandwiches. Everyone thinks having worms is bad so the "affliction" is gotten rid of before anyone realizes it's a good thing.
    • Really, the main reason it's treated like a curse by everyone else is that they just think having worms live inside you is too gross. They know about the benefits as they watch the worms mend a hole THROUGH HIS TORSO in seconds and see all the internal changes first hand. Leela spends time with Fry and falls in love with him because of how much they improve him. In the end, Fry sees them as a curse only because he can't tell if Leela loves him for him or for what the worms have made him.
  • In one of the My Little Pony animated specials, the eponymous character of "Come Back, Lily Lightly" is the only unicorn whose horn lights up, which she assumes will get her ostracized if anyone finds out. Thus, she runs off when she's accidentally outed, only for her friends to find her and tell her that a glowing horn is cool, and helpful for finding lost ponies on dark nights.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • In "Bridle Gossip", Poison Joke causes a different curse on those who come in contact with it. Fluttershy, the Shrinking Violet, is cursed with an unfitting deep voice, making talking even more awkward for her than usual. This becomes useful in the season four episode "Filli Vanilli", when her deepened voice let her stand in for Big Macintosh in an acapella quartet.
    • In the season five episode "Appleoosa's Most Wanted", the Cutie Mark Crusaders run into Troubleshoes Clyde, a saboteur who's been going around messing up rodeos. He turns out to be just a big, clumsy Gentle Giant who wanted to be in a rodeo as a colt, but believes his upside-down horseshoe cutie mark means he's Born Unlucky. It turns out his clumsiness makes him a natural at prat-falls, and the Crusaders help him achieve his dream by getting him a job as a rodeo clown.
  • Recess has an episode where a new kid shows up and the main cast discovers he's better than them at everything. He's smarter than the smart kid, tougher than the tough kid, more poetic than the artsy kid. Except it turns out he never has any friends because everyone keeps forcing him to compete with them. Then a Secret Service agent shows up to ask for his help, and he flies away in a fighter jet.
  • In South Park it has been revealed that Kenny dying in many episodes has been retconned to not be a case of Negative Continuity, but an actual superpower, he cannot die. Or more accurately, he does die, but is then instantly reborn, with all his memories intact. He remembers all his deaths, but nobody else does. He thinks this sucks, because he has to suffer all the pain of all those deaths over and over — and he's had plenty of extremely unpleasant deaths — and he's annoyed that nobody else remembers it. Still, it comes in handy for the occasional Heroic Sacrifice.
  • In Sabrina: The Animated Series (in which teenage Sabrina is retconned into being a preteen or young teen), Sabrina's aunts Hilda and Zelda were punished for abuse of their powers by being transformed into being permanently looking 17. Being young and beautiful forever is something that many people through the ages in real life would drink potentially toxic elixirs in order to achieve. And all they had to do was overuse their powers. Since they're REALLY not 17, they don't have the age-related drawbacks, either. Not that it'd matter, since they could make their own alcohol, tobacco, porn, you name it, even if they weren't legally allowed to buy it. One of its draw backs however, is they can't get any real jobs that require someone to be at least 20 years old, and they were stuck working in a restaurant just to earn their own money.
  • In an episode of Hey Arnold!, Arnold's grandpa believes he is dying of a "curse" that causes men in his family to die at the age of 81...exactly at the age of 81. They never die young and always live several years past the U.S. male life expectancy. What a terrible fate! It becomes even sillier when Arnold notices that he did the math wrong; his predecessors died when they were 91.
  • In season two of Young Justice, Superboy still looks the same even after a five year Time Skip. One of the side effects of the cloning process that created him is that he will never visibly age. He can still eventually die of old age, but he'll always look like a teenager/young adult. Superboy is less than happy about this and it's implied to be one of the reasons he broke up with M'gann.. Alanna tries to sympathize with him but judging by the way she says "curse", she's clearly not seeing the downside.
  • On Adventure Time, Finn buys a new grass sword that's "cursed" with being supernaturally efficient and also wrapping around his arm and not coming off. On his quest to get it uncursed he realizes that this is actually pretty cool—and even better, once he accepts it the sword conveniently gains the power to turn into a sort of armband and back whenever he chooses.
  • Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is all about this. At first, Rudolph's red nose and Hermey's talent for dentistry make both of them "misfits", but Rudolph's nose is what saves the day at the end (and is a convenient light source), while Hermey's talent saves his friends from the Abominable. The Misfit Toys have this too. Apparently, at least one child in the world would love to have a toy cowboy that rides an ostrich or a choo-choo with square wheels on its caboose. It just takes an expert like Santa Claus to find such children.
  • In the Star vs. the Forces of Evil episode "Match Maker", Star accidentally turns her 50-something home-room teacher Miss Skullnick into a troll, and can't figure out how to change her back. This only serves to make Skullnick even crabbier... until in the episode "Interdimensional Field Trip", where she learns more about trolls and the advantages that come with her new form, including Super Strength and a lifespan as long as four centuries. It helps that the only downside of being a troll is that they're ugly, and Skullnick wasn't exactly a looker even as a human.
    Miss Skullnick: I'm going to live to be four hundred? And here I thought I was going through "the big change". I'm a teenager again!
  • In the Phineas and Ferb episode "The Ballad of Badbeard", the kids hear that whoever finds the lost treasure of the Pirate Badbeard will be cursed with a bad beard forever. The kids (boys and girls both) think this sounds awesome, and go looking for the treasure. When they find it, it turns out—to their delight—that the "treasure" is a chest filled with cheap fake beards.
  • Kaeloo: Kaeloo is "cursed" with the power of turning into a monster whose actions are beyond her conscious control, but the power does prove to have its advantages, such as restoring order when things get too chaotic or playing sports which require physical prowess. In addition, it's pretty much the only thing that can keep Mr. Cat and Olaf in check.
  • Mistyque Sonia from Hero: 108 is "cursed" with having anyone who tells her that he loves her three times in a row turning into a Yaksha... an adorable creature which she can wear on her head like a hat and which she is very close to. She especially takes advantage of this when her (presumably) first Yaksha gets destroyed by the ligers and soon gets replaced with another one because in the same episode, she has the luck of encountering a man who loves her and tricks him into saying that three times.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender:
    • Katara grieves learning and having to use such a power as she doesn't want as bloodbending. Only a few episodes later, though, she is able to put it to good use during a side quest to avenge her and Sokka's mother, manipulating a Fire Nation soldier for information about said mother's killer.
    • Although an in-depth description would be massive spoilers, let's just say that both Aang and Korra learn in their series what it means for them to actually be the Avatar, and leave it at that.

    Real Life 
  • Famed Argentine author Jorge Luis Borges wrote powerfully on the benefits of blindness, asserting that he could now "see" the truths of the world more clearly.
  • Autistic savants: They generally have superb mathematical abilities, despite being burdened with autism and being bully magnets. However, it's generally with very severe cases and is extremely rare. Savants can also be gifted with artistic, musical, linguistic talent, etc., but they tend to only be skilled in that area and absolutely nothing else. It can get oddly specific, too; a savant might be able to draw a horse perfectly, but can't even draw a cloud in the background.
  • It has been said that Howard Hughes would not have performed any of his accomplishments if he was not driven by his Super OCD. The same has been said with Howie Mandel.
  • John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin, since he never achieved anywhere near the fame of Jimmy Paige, Robert Plant, or even John Bonham, he was free to enjoy the rock and roll lifestyle and actually explore the many places they visited on tour because no one would recognize him on the street, while the rest of the band couldn't leave their hotel rooms without being swarmed by fans.
  • With neurosyphilis, a recurrence of syphilis when latent Treponema bacteria start attacking the brain, it causes euphoria in its victims. They become more sexually active, happier, and more passionate. Because syphilis isn't very common anymore, this usually happens in old people. Now, you can imagine how being old and suddenly regaining your sex drive is unusual. A substory of House was inspired by this. That, in turn, was inspired by a real case study done by Oliver Sacks, which he wrote about in The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat. This 89 year old woman had been a prostitute in turn of the century Greece and contracted syphilis when she was 20. Since there was no treatment at the time, the spirochetes became latent and only affected her 70 years later. She started feeling horny for the first time in years, and sleeping with younger men. Her fellow prostitutes had nicknamed it "Cupid's Disease" (brothels should know a thing or two about STDs). Sure enough, when they tested her CSF, it was positive for neurosyphilis. And just like in House, the old woman wasn't sure if she wanted it treated. But she didn't have to worry. Her brain had been permanently "damaged," so the spirochaetes could be killed without reversing the mild disinhibition. In House's words, she was "cursed to feel happy".
  • In the late 1940s Harry Corbett used to play the piano in a band. Then he started going deaf (he was eventually cured by an operation). He took up conjuring instead, and before long he started using a teddy bear glove puppet as his assistant - and the rest is history.
  • More neurological awesome-curses: Geschwind syndrome occurs in some people with temporal lobe epilepsy and possibly other temporal lobe abnormalities. It consists of hypergraphia, a tendency to have heightened emotional and mental life and decreased sexual interest, and an inclination towards spirituality. Sure, seizures aren't fun, but the rest of it? Many writers would give anything to spend more time in that mindstate, especially the hypergraphia. Low sex drive is not much of a problem, you only lack the "urge" to mate like 99% of the rest of the population, but you can appreciate sex physically as much as everyone else... You are also much less likely to do stupid things (although, low sex drive can be a symptom of another problem such as depression or a hormone imbalance. It would be wise to double-check.)
  • The religious hierarchy of Egypt was so angry at King Tut's father for trying to switch to a monotheistic system that they did their best to completely erase any history that his son ever ruled. They were so successful that the tomb was only robbed twice months after the burial, the first of which stole limited items and the second of which the robbers were caught and the items returned. Which is why it was full of treasure when Carter discovered it, causing King Tut to be the best-known pharaoh of all time.
  • Narcissists. They are much more confident, ambitious and sure of themselves than ordinary people, giving them a greater chance of success. On the other side, their relationships and self-control can become really serious issues, with a chance they end up putting themselves or others in danger.
  • Being small or flat-chested. You may not get a lot of attention and you may even feel left out or be teased. But you also have an easy time finding bras and shirts that fit you (may even be able to squeeze yourself into an extra small shirt and still be comfortable) and you won't have to suffer the back pains that your larger-chested counterparts likely do (for example, Queen Latifah said on the Tyra show that her breasts became downright torturous when she used to play basketball, and Tyra added that merely rushing to answer a ringing phone could be painful.) Some studies show that smaller breasts tend to be more sensitive, too: there's not a huge variation in the amount of nerve tissue in breasts, or anywhere else for that matter, but smaller breasts generally mean a higher average concentration of nerves (due to smaller volume) and vice versa. Cursed with awesome indeed. Given the fact that most are indifferent to breasts larger than B-cup size, and breasts are just one component of many when it comes to sexual attraction, small breast size actually has remarkably few drawbacks.
  • Russia is a vast country with extremely cold winters, two factors which drive up transport and living costs, and generally cause life in Russia to be an even greater pain. However, during the World Wars, the vastness of Russia and the coldness of her winters played merry hell with the invaders' logistics - they were far more dependent on railways and, unlike the Russians, they didn't have enough horses to keep their troops fed and supplied properly over the massive distances involved.
    • Not just during the World Wars. People with eyes on Russia like the Teutonic Knights and Napoleon Bonaparte also got caught up in the winters, to the point that it was almost expected for a Russian Army to used a Scorched-Earth strategy - wherein they'd evacuate and then raze all the villages in the invaders' path to keep them hungry and exposed to the elements. Napoleon's failed invasion is considered (one of) his greatest failure(s). The Nazis also suffered this, and Hitler expected them to keep on going and not retreat. It's not for nothing that Russia's winter is sometimes nicknamed "General Frost" or "General Winter."
    • Same applies to Finland. But also skiing or snowmobiling through the snowy wilderness in winter is far faster than walking or hiking through them in the summer, and the extremely difficult road conditions in the winter makes Finns skillful car and motorcycle drivers. If you wanna win, get a Finn is an old adage in motor sports. Many car manufacturers do their development work in Finland due to the Finnish winter and road conditions in wintertime.
      • Russian Lada had (and has still) an excellent reputation as a reliable winter car in Finland. While generally not liked, it was respected. It can be said Lada itself was cursed with awesome - the properties which made it a good winter car made it awful to drive in other seasons.
  • Suspension with pay. You don't need to (in fact you can't) go to work, but you still get paid. Along the same vein, suspension from school: most kids hate school anyway, so you're going to "punish" them with a couple of days off? Great! Some schools have gone to "in-school suspension" (basically all-day detention) to counteract this, but this also fails because students aren't really forced to work. For those that do take the time to work, they're able to do so at their own pace since they're not at the mercy of period bells.
  • Shows with a small or No Budget. Yeah, you may not get the best special effects or Scenery Porn of a better funded show, but by the same tokens, the writers realize this, and you oftentimes can get a show that's better written and better produced. The producers of Supernatural, the old series of Doctor Who and the British Being Human have all mentioned working on somewhat small budgets (especially for a sci-fi series) forced them to get creative and put more effort into quality instead of spectacle.
    • Good Indie titles are the Video Game version.
    • Adversity forces creativity. The original ending of Back to the Future (driving into a Nevada nuclear test range) was judged too expensive by the studio, so they wrote in the lightning strike at the clock tower instead. Many many classic movies had similar situations, where a unique solution to a budget issue became the most memorable part of the film.
  • Avengers: Infinity War writers have credited this to the success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Since Marvel Studios didn't have access to its top-tier superheroes like Spider-Man or the X-Men when the franchise began in 2008, they had to work with B-list heroes, which gave the studio more creative freedom in reimagining and altering the characters without having to live up to pre-existing expectations by the public. Furthermore, the lesser-known reputation of these heroes forced the writers to focus more on making the characters relatable instead of relying just on brand name recognition.
  • Certain types of synesthesia. Most people who have it describe it as a sixth sense that allows them to memorize things like formulas and phone numbers better than the average person as well; some who perceive sounds as colors have composed music by literally looking at it without the aid of sheet music. The downside? You're basically constantly hallucinating and describing your experiences to someone who isn't familiar with your particular manifestation of synesthesia makes you sound like you just transferred in from Wonderland. Of course, there's also the fact that it cannot be controlled. What if, for example you meet someone who you think might be the love of your life, but merely speaking or hearing their name literally puts a bad taste in your mouth?
  • Waardenburg Syndrome, which usually causes deafness or hearing loss. But many people with the mutation also have the most stunning, gorgeous blue eyes that are humanly possible. [1]
  • While this can vary from the perspective of the individual with it, Asperger's Syndrome is this. Sure you generally will have less social ability, but you have lowered social inhibitions and have "special interests" which enable one to memorize, study, and focus on said subject for longer amounts of time then a normal person.
    • Though Asperger's is a socially harmful condition, the social handicaps just mean that you have to work around them, making gained ability that much more meaningful, truly exemplifying this trope.
      • If you are born female, however, it can easily lead into Blessed with Suck territory, due to the fact it isn't as easy to diagnose a girl with Asperger's as it is with a boy. Check the trope page for a detailed explanation.
    • For the RPG Crowd: It's been said that Asperger's Syndrome comes across as if someone decided to make 'Charisma' their Dump Stat and put all the saved/'saved' points into 'intelligence'.
    • Asperger's can also make your five senses (sight, hearing, touch, smell, taste) over-sensitive, the most common one being taste. Sure, this would make you a fussy eater, but with over-sensitive taste-buds you'll be able to taste things other people wouldn't pick up on - like nuts, for example, which could even save lives.
    • With Required Secondary Powers like determination and social support, those "special interests" can translate into a highly-paid engineering job.
  • Most if not all neurological disorders that give one the ability to feel Euphoria without having to work for it. Something that usually takes the average person drugs to achieve.
  • Some people get very neurotic about being late to anything, even by a few minutes, and thus often insist on coming very early. They aren't fun to go to movies with, and suffer from anxiety often, but anyone who's ever been fired for repeated tardies knows that it's not without its benefits.
  • Some people with bipolar disorder refuse to take medication for their condition, preferring the roller-coaster to a blandly-unpleasant existence of mild sedation and other drug side-effects.
  • Super tasters. They have too many taste buds and as a result, they cannot enjoy delicious foods. But this forces them to actually enjoy healthy foods. YMMV though, since certain healthy foods can be overbearing while less healthy ones with less complex flavors will be preferred.
  • Single people. While a relationship can be a good thing for a person, it can also be bad. Very, very bad. So while single people may feel lonely at times (and may even be ridiculed by others!) they have more freedom, less worry/drama, more focus on goals, no worries about fidelity/exclusivity/trust, etc. relative to people in romantic relationships. All this can apply to virgins as well: there can be no surer protection against STDs and unwanted pregnancies than not having sex!
  • Some people require a lot of stimulation to orgasm, or simply can't climax at all. This can make it difficult if not impossible to use masturbation to 'blow off steam' and relax, and it can also foster feelings of inadequacy in one's partners - who may feel they are 'to blame' for you not climaxing. But on the plus side you may well be able to work up to a very, very high plateau of sexual pleasure - the kind most might only be able to reach for a moment before climaxing. And then stay there. In some cases, for hours. Cursed with awesome indeed.
  • Human biology states that wisdom teeth should grow in, but some people have a hereditary condition that prevents this from occurring. While this is technically a genetic defect, it only works to one's favor in an era of modern dental hygiene.
  • Working weekends. While any shift that requires this does not seem desirable, it has a large advantage that most don't realize unless they've done it: If your days off are normal business days, this means you have days off when everything is open and you can get errands done far easier and at less of an inconvenience to your normal schedule. It also allows one to go shopping at stores that are open 7 days but are far busier on weekends and beat the crowds. You can actually get far more done on your days off.
    • The same with working the night shift or early morning. Many radio hosts, for example, only work when doing their show, and then spend the rest the day doing whatever they want.
      • Some private schools require you to work on Saturdays, but because of this, the days off you normally would have are added to your holidays. For instance, in UK schools that do this you would get nine weeks summer holiday instead of six, plus extra weeks at Christmas and Easter too. You get a great feeling of vindication when people from other schools have to go back to school when you have several more weeks of holiday left. That's not to say it's not frustrating to lose your full weekend though.
    • Many computer programmers prefer working the night shift because it offers fewer distractions.
    • If where you work is a non-trivial commute from home, working at night and on weekends can have the benefit of not having to deal with the horrendous rush hour traffic.
  • Some guy on twitter tried to threaten women with the "curse" of not dating them. Which led to this hilarious five-act play by John Scalzi: [2]
  • There are quite a few people with high metabolisms that wish they could actually pack on the pounds. This is despite them being able to eat as much as they want without gaining any weight, and svelte people being generally considered quite attractive (to the point where there's many a model who's little more than skin and bones).
  • Poets/Writers/artists who've had horrible lives. In return of a lifetime of suffering (losing their parents very early, starvation, disease, etc.), they write far better works than ones whose lives were happier. A good example is Attila József, a young Hungarian poet whose father abandoned the family when he was three years old and mother died nine years later, ended up in the psychiatric ward, and died when he was crushed by a train. Still he wrote beautiful and amazing poems that were even melodized by some punk bands. Though some of them only get their appreciation they deserve after they die.
  • Amtrak does not run any high speed lines outside the Northeast Corridor due to its lackluster federal funding, forcing it to take winding routes through mountainous terrain - giving train-riders among the best views you can get on any trip in the world. Few railroads in the world offer so much "the journey is the destination" as Amtrak does. However, it can also become Blessed with Suck as Congress does not see tourism and sightseeing as something the federal government should spend money on.
  • This turned out to be the case with Secretariat, considered the greatest race horse of all time. After his death an autopsy revealed that his heart was freakishly much larger than your average horse, and almost certainly the result of a genetic mutation, however this enlarged heart's ability to pump much more blood is the primary reason for his speed.
  • Being palace eunuchs. They can't procreate and enjoy sexual pleasure but, thanks to that, they were able to hold governmental powers which they cannot get in any other way (i.e. joining the military).
  • Some people with Kallman Syndrome as told in this Cracked article. When the male recipients are too late to be treated, their semen can be infertile and are subjects for their kids' look. Yet the male recipients will not go bald much later than normal men treated or not. And hey, if they are treated they still have their youth for some time and their voice wouldn't crack.
  • Small-name creators may not be making enough from what they produce for entertainment for it to be their main job, but they generally enjoy better relations with their fans (due to not being flooded with constant fan messages), are more likely to do what they do out of passion rather than just to make money, and don't have to deal with the downsides of being super-famous such as constant public scrutiny.
  • Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome is a condition where a woman is born effectively genetically male on the inside, yet still developed female genitalia and hormones. It leaves any recipient lacking reproductive organs and completely infertile. However the way it affects body development means that women with it often end up absolutely gorgeous.
  • Underachieving students in school, who have to struggle and work hard to get average marks. They won't be getting any rewards for their academics anytime soon and they're likely to hate their time in school for how difficult it is, but they're also learning how to work hard and cope with failure. Once they're out of school and likely pursuing a career that doesn't require a high level of academic prowess, they're likely to find themselves excelling purely on the work ethic they developed.
  • People in small or obscure cities may lose out when it comes to things to do around town or participating in big-name events (such as concerts of popular musicians) that are only held in bigger cities that people actually care about, but one of their perks is that where they live is less likely to be flooded by tourists who crowd places or disrespect the local culture.
  • Having an eidetic memory, sure it's of great use when you're revising or remembering the most important things. However, you are going to be stuck with bad, cringey or even traumatic memories as well. An eidetic memory works both ways.