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Dare to Be Badass

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Synthetic men may instead apply to join the other regiment, located behind the gigantic inflatable tank. Beware of the vampires.

"You know, your father was captain of a starship for twelve minutes. He saved eight hundred lives, including your mother's — and yours. I dare you to do better."
Captain Christopher Pike to a young James T. Kirk, Star Trek (2009)

The Hero is called upon to step up to the plate and be awesome. Sounds a lot like the Call to Adventure, you say? Well, yes; the two are closely related. The difference is, an Adventure Call is more like, "Hey! You totally want to take on this quest to slay the dragon and save the princess because it sure beats washing cars and sipping lattes all day (and you might even get a nice check, or even more, out of the deal)."

A Badass Dare is more like, "The Dragon has already stomped out a squadron of fighter jets and a bunch of tanks. And now he's getting ready to eat the princess. But you're our only hope. Now yeah, you can sit here and just keep sipping lattes and washing cars. Or you can take this BFG/BFS and save the world!"

The Dare to Be Badass makes the distinction that the character turning their back on the dare is somehow lesser as a person for not accepting it. Conversely, the character is being asked to step up to awesomeness because, deep down, he/she (to use the words of Captain Christopher Pike) feels like they are meant for something more. Something greater. This will usually punctuate, or trigger, massive Character Development.

While the Call to Adventure usually starts off The Hero's Journey, the Dare to Be Badass usually comes at a point when the chips are most certainly down for The Hero, and he/she must be reminded that they can't give up.

Done right, this can resemble a 30-second Rousing Speech and thus be highly awesome. Done wrong, you know what you get.

The trope name is in reference to the famous phrase of the classical philosopher Horace, sapere aude or "Dare to be wise."

Compare a "No More Holding Back" Speech. See also Consequence Combo, when the hero is being pushed into the adventure with both a carrot and a stick. Compare and contrast Go, Ye Heroes, Go and Die, which can overlap with this trope when a speech like this falls flat (or emphasizes the unpleasantness too much).

Not to be confused with a dare to be stupid.


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  • Essentially all military recruitment ads and war propaganda in every country (and every war) ever. The tendency is for such ads to assert how badass you will become if you join the army/navy and even plays up how tough the training is in order to appeal the I Just Want to Be Badass desire in young men. This makes sense since the job is usually quite dangerous and not especially well paid when you start out, so few people would be willing to sign up just to make a living.
  • Sony's "Greatness Awaits" advertising campaign for their PS4, and other games, has primarily relied on this trope in their tactics.
    • Best Summed up in their Ad by the same name.
      "Who are you not to be great? You the imagination of a brilliant child, and the powers of an ancient god. Who are you to be ordinary? You who can resend life or raise the dead. Who are you to be afraid? You who can serve as Judge and Jury, while hoarding infinite lives. Who are you to be slave to the past? You who can travel time like the ocean, and rewrite history with a single word! Who are you to be anonymous?!? You whose name should be spoken in reverent tones, or terrified whispers! Who are you to deny greatness? If you would deny it to yourself you deny it to the world... [beat] and we will not be denied."
      -Taylor Handley

    Anime and Manga 
  • Black Clover:
    • At the very start of the manga, after Revchi effortlessly beats up Asta while trying to steal Yuno's four-leaf grimoire, he takes a moment to taunt him over how he's a hopeless loser who was born without magic, and mocks his dream of becoming the Wizard King. Yuno cuts Revchi off and agrees that Asta won't become the Wizard King... because the one who will become Wizard King is Yuno himself. He then states that Asta is no loser: he is Yuno's rival. Feeling acknowledged by his rival, Asta gains a Heroic Second Wind... just as a five-leaf grimoire chooses him as its wielder.
    • Yami often tells his squad to "Surpass your limits!" during dangerous situations that have them fighting against formidable foes. They certainly live up to their captain's words, becoming stronger and managing to defeat powerful enemies — even sometimes learning new spells in the process.
  • Bleach:
    • After Ichigo loses the powers Rukia gave him and Rukia is taken back to Soul Society to face punishment for the illegal act of giving him those powers, Ichigo does say he wants to save Rukia. However, Urahara realizes that Ichigo really doesn't feel he can and is looking to get himself killed in a noble way. So, he challenges Ichigo to stop acting like a selfish child who just wants to die and to man up, engage in serious training with Urahara, and then make a serious rescue attempt to save Rukia and come home alive.
      Urahara: You are weak. A weakling barging into enemy territory is suicide. 'To rescue Rukia'? Stop being so childish! Don't use other people as an excuse to go kill yourself! The Soul Society usually allows a grace period that lasts a month for the maximum penalty in a convict's execution. It will be the same for Rukia's case. We will just take ten days to annoy you. It will take seven days to open the door to the Soul Society. So, after you arrive at the Soul Society, you will have thirteen days! You have plenty of time. If you truly desire to save Rukia, a strong will is stronger than steel. If your determination is anything less than whole-hearted, throw it away. For ten days, can you be seriously determined to fight?
    • In the subsequent training, when Ichigo has restored his powers but finds himself running for dear life from Urahara, the spirit of his weapon, well, filtered through a piece of someone else, anyway, urges him to stand his ground. His speech allows Ichigo to harness his soul's greatest quality (he's at his best when he's charging forward without hesitation) and finally release his sword's true form.
      Old Man Spirit: What are you doing? Why do you run Ichigo? You still have not called me. Face forward, Ichigo. You should be able to hear it now. That which blocks your ears is worthless fear. The enemy is one, you are one. What is there to fear? Cast off your fear. Look forward! Go forward! Never stand still. Retreat and you will age. Hesitate and you will die. Shout! My name is...!
      Ichigo: ZANGETSU!
    • After Rukia restores his Shinigami powers after the Time Skip, she dares Ichigo not to prove himself a badass to her, but to the enemy standing before him.
  • In Brave10, Anastasia tells Isanami, hithertofore The Load, to stop playing the tragic heroine and live up to the rest of the team during her Unwanted Rescue.
  • During the final battle of Claymore, the resurrected Teresa calls out to Cassandra, who has previously been absorbed by Priscilla, and demands that she stops pretending that something as trivial as being devoured whole can hold down a former Number One and fights her one-on-one with swords, as Number Ones do. In response, Cassandra reforms her body and breaks it out of Priscilla's—if only to see for herself who would have the gall to issue a challenge like that to her. Of course, having originally died before Teresa was even born, Cassandra had never heard of the true power behind the Faint Smile.
  • In Code Geass, Zero's rescue of Tohdoh and his fellow rebels from the execution they had come to accept is accompanied by a lecture on the nature of miracles. [adult swim] accurately described this scene as Zero berating Tohdoh for "not being badass enough."
  • Dragon Ball Z:
    • At the final battle with Majin Buu, Vegeta tries to convince the Earthlings to raise up their hands to give Goku the energy he needs to form the Genki Dama powerful enough to kill Buu. Vegeta tells the Earthlings to consider this act as their first step to becoming a warrior race. It doesn't work until Mr. Satan steps in and tells them to do it.
    • Earlier during the Cell Games Mr. Satan is at the receiving end of one: having realized how to trigger Gohan's transformation into Super Saiyan 2 but reduced to a severed head, Android 16 asks Mr. Satan to bring him to Gohan, and when he starts making excuses, 16 asks, "Aren't you the world champion?". Mr. Satan rises to the challenge and brings 16 to Gohan in spite of his immense fear of being swatted away by Cell or ending as collateral damage of the Cell Juniors' rampage.
  • Food Wars!:
    • Seems to be a recurring theme in, being in Senzaemon's opening speech, as he encouraged the students to be on the 1% top of the academy. Also, Yukihira and Megumi's relationship dynamics during early on the manga doubles this with You Are Better Than You Think You Are, as Yukihira encourages Megumi to fight to get better (It worked: as of the most recent arc, Megumi is the 10th seat making her one of the top six Second years.)
    • Soma himself gives one to the entire school at the end of the Central arc. After becoming the new 1st Seat, he tells the entire student body that anyone can challenge him for the seat, whenever they want, and on whatever they want. Given that he never let himself be intimidated by cooks who were above him, he's now encouraging the rest of the students to do the same.
  • The memetically famous song, "The Meaning of Truth," from F-Zero: GP Legend is basically saying this when translated.
  • Gundam 00: A Wakening of the Trailblazer has the resident Char Clone Graham Aker giving one to The Hero in the final 20 minutes of the movie:
    Graham: WHY ARE YOU HESITATING?! You were the one who told me to keep fighting in order to live. You taught me that! Even if it's a contradiction, you must continue to exist! You said that is what it means to live... [Activates Trans-Am] Go on, young man! LIVE AND BLAZE A TRAIL TO THE FUTURE!
  • In High School D×D, this is what Issei tells Gasper when he holds the Distress Ball when he gets captured:
    Issei: However, Gasper! It's no use if you don't get up on your own, you know? After receiving encouragement from a girl, the next step is to stand up! Don't you have a wonderful pair of balls on you!?
  • Rika gives an absolutely epic one to Satoko in the Higurashi: When They Cry manga when encouraging her to stand up against Teppei, her abusive uncle.
    Rika: Are your teeth chattering? Are your knees trembling? You feel a shiver creeping up your spine? All those emotions are what Satoshi felt whenever he had to protect you! And please understand what Satoshi expected from you and what example he wanted you to follow! If you don't understand that, you'll never get any stronger! Show Satoshi how much stronger you've become during this year! Find courage like that of Satoshi AND FILL YOUR CHEST WITH IT RIGHT NOW!
  • In the first season of the Initial D anime, people frequently dared Takumi to be badass when he was challenged to races — and he invariably responded to it with intransigence, only being willing to race on his own terms.
  • Jujutsu Kaisen: During a sparring session, Gojo tells Megumi that he never tries his best because he is of the mindset that he can always just use his trump card at the cost of his own life if he's desperate to win. He then encourages Megumi to be greedier and actually try his best. When Megumi remembers Gojo's words while fighting a Special Grade curse, rather than summon Mahoraga as he has tried before, he instead opts to perform Domain Expansion; while his technique is incomplete and "ugly", it provides him with enough of a power boost that he manages to turn the fight around and win.
  • After punching out the protagonist in a Final Boss Preview, Yuri of Megalo Box dares Junk Dog to qualify for Megalonia if he wants a rematch. While intended as little more as a parting taunt, Joe spends most of the show trying to make exactly that happen which delights Yuri to no end.
    Yuri: This isn't my ring. If you're serious about fighting me again, come at me. In my ring.
  • U.A. Academy, the setting for My Hero Academia has this concept as its Badass Creed:
    Go beyond! Plus Ultra!Translation
  • Negima! Magister Negi Magi has Negi on the receiving end of several of these, usually from Evangeline (or a pseudo-Eva created from his memories). Evangeline also gives one of these to Asuna to see if she can survive Eva's Training from Hell. It ultimately boils down to "You can either die, quit and go home, or be badass enough to survive. Oh, and in case you haven't noticed, I don't like you."
  • At the beginning of Neon Genesis Evangelion, Shinji Ikari receives a challenge like this from his father Gendo, who needs him to pilot Unit-01 to save the city from an Angel attack already in progress. Shinji, however, is 14 (sensitive and easily frightened at that), hasn't seen his father in years by the latter's choice, and was expecting some sort of reconciliation scene. Neither lives up to the other's expectations, then or later.
  • One Piece:
    • Gold Roger's dying words were one to anyone who aspired to be a pirate.
      Gold Roger: You want my treasure? You can have it! I left everything I gathered together in one place. Now you just have to find it!
    • After freeing Zoro from the marine base, Luffy does this to Coby to give him the courage to become a marine... by almost telling the marines that Coby used to part of a pirate crew... then beating him up. It's complicated.
    • Mihawk gives a magnificent one to Zoro after completely defeating him in a duel.
      Mihawk: It's still too early for you to die. My name is Dracule Mihawk! Discover your true self, the true world, become stronger! However long it may take, I shall await you at the top. Surpass this sword! Surpass me! Roronoa Zoro!
  • Although it's not a straight example, the soundtrack version of Fly Away from Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt has this in its lyrics. "You'll never find a better time. Make a stand, you'll be fine. You know the game and all it holds. Watch it now as it unfolds."
  • Rebuild World: Erio says that he's stronger than Akira and tries to jump him from behind for control of Sheryl's gang, resulting in a Curb-Stomp Battle and Sheryl taking out her anger on Erio telling him that he's nothing compared to Akira if he can't go out there as one of the Disaster Scavengers and bring back a relic like he did, banishing him until he does so. Erio gets a handgun from his girlfriend and heads out, losing his gun and then being saved by Akira in an Epic Fail, having to carry Akira's heavy loot home to get re-admitted to the gang. Despite this, Erio becomes a force to be reckoned with in the long run thanks to Akira training him and the Declaration of Protection he makes for his girlfriend.
  • The Saga of Tanya the Evil: When Tanya is tasked with creating her own battalion of elite mages (which she really doesn't want to do), she draws up an advertisement that emphasizes how miserable and horrific the detail will be, thinking this will deter the majority of soldiers. The military mistakes it for a Dare To Be Badass ad that results in her office being flooded with volunteers, to her frustration.
  • In Saki Achiga-hen in a flashback, Masae Atago, coach of Senriyama's mahjong team, tells the new arrivals that it's possible for students to make the regular team in their first year, and thus encourages them to be proactive.
  • Kamina's whole character in Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann is pretty much based around providing this sort of motivation to the other characters. Hell, this could be considered basically the entire message of the series, seeing as all the incredibly awesome stuff they accomplish is caused simply by daring to be badass.
  • Trapped in a Dating Sim: The World of Otome Games is Tough for Mobs: Leon and other nobles are taken hostage on a field trip by an invading nation and told they have one hour to prepare themselves to die (due to a Frame-Up plot). Leon ends up giving one of these to the defeatist, mostly Royal Brat students. Speaking like a Drill Sergeant Nasty, Leon tells them that they're pathetic and only living off the names of their badass ancestors, who are laughing at them from beyond for being cowards. Not only does this rally the students to put up a determined resistance, it also earns Leon the affections of resident masochist Bunny-Ears Lawyer Deirdre.

    Comic Books 
  • Shang-Chi invokes this on Spider-Man during the very beginning of Spider-Island. Shang-Chi seeks to teach Peter a new fighting style to compensate for the loss of his Spider-Sense. When Peter laments that it was easier with the power, Shang-Chi tells him it was a crutch and that he can do so much better. And he does.
  • In Secret Wars (2015), Doctor Doom has become the God of Battleworld and, in doing so, he has punished his enemies, the Fantastic Four. Sue has become his consort, Johnny is the sun, and Ben Grimm is the Shield that surrounds the southern edge of Battleworld, keeping out the zombies, giant insects, and Ultrons. Except Ben doesn't know that this is punishment—Doom has wiped their minds, so all they know is that Doom is God. Until Thanos gets himself captured and reveals what Doom did to Grimm:
    "Doom has asked you to live on your knees. Every day of this life, he's beaten you as you lie there. What do you do? You stand up. What time is it, Ben Grimm? What time is it?"
    • So Ben stands up, all hundred feet of him, and says, "IT'S CLOBBERING TIME."
  • In Bizarrogirl, Lana Lang’s speech manages to force Supergirl out of her despondency and get her to fight her counterpart.
    Lana: So, way I see it, you've got two options. One, you can continue to wallow in self-pity over the fact that you couldn't save New Krypton from a power-stealing, world-shattering blast. Or two, you could get out of bed and go save whoever you can. Your choice, Kara, but you might ask yourself, what would your people want you want to do?
  • In Superman (Rebirth), the Eradicator is overpowering Superman as the former seeks to kill the latter's son, Jonathan, because of his Half-Human Hybrid heritage. Jonathan, holding Krypto's lost cape (as the dog had been absorbed into the Eradicator), wants to help his father, but he isn't sure if he can. Lois, however, tells him that he's the best of both worlds and that he can be great if he chooses to be. He zips up his S-Shield jacket, solders on the cape and charges into battle, aiding his father.
  • Royals: While under attack from a ludicrously huge Chitauri swarm, Medusa gives one of these on Flint, which proves effective enough to get him to use his powers on Pluto.
  • Ultimate Spider-Man: The announcer of the wrestling arena asked, who among the public has the guts to fight against Crusher Hogan? Kong has them... but he's a minor. Peter Parker has them, but he wears a mask to conceal his identity.

    Comic Strips 
  • Doonesbury: When Joanie Caucus applied to law school, her young friend Ellie encouraged her to think big, like a run for the U.S. Senate.
    Ellie: Dare to be great, Ms. Caucus.
    Joanie Caucus: (smiling) Oh, all right.

    Fan Works 
  • An Impractical Guide to Godhood: Lou Ellen reluctantly joins the Suicide Squad mainly because Percy/Kairos proves that he has spells he can teach her and then goadingly asks her if she wants to embrace greatness or mediocrity.
  • Bait and Switch (STO): In "Flesh and Blood," part of Rachel Connor's storyline, Kanril Eleya calls out Rachel for her Internalized Categorism over being a genetic augment, telling her that she should value herself, and fight for herself against anybody who tells her she shouldn't.
    Eleya: You're a MACO, damn it! That patch on your shoulder a shark or a minnow?
  • In The Butcher Bird, Bosque Herman gives one to Tashigi after the latter suffers a complete breakdown at being beaten with ease yet again.
    Narrated from Kaneki's POV: "What a load of shit," Herman growls, stepping to the side. "Damn you, Marine, what happened to your pride? Your conviction? You're too weak to fulfill your dream? Then grow stronger, and surpass me! Cut down those who say you're wrong until you've made the truth of the world out of their spilled blood and guts!" He grabs Amakatta, wrenching the blade out of the ground. "Stand up, damn you! Stand up, Tashigi, show me power and pride and conviction, show me something I can stand to match blade to blade rather than pointless petty anger! Get up on your own two feet, fight with every waking breath, because if you fold at this, what worth was your dream anyway?!" He holds the massive sword low and back, an opening and a challenge. "Get up, Tashigi of the Navy," he says, right eye glowing with crimson light. "You want to prove yourself, prove you can break me? I have a pulse, so remove my skull. Hack me down, if you can, Tashigi of the Navy, and prove your cause just through the first resort of gods and kings! STAND! UP!"
  • After Calvin spends an episode freaking out over Laser-Guided Karma in Calvin & Hobbes: The Series, Susie delivers this speech (which also counts as a "No More Holding Back" Speech of sorts):
    Susie: Calvin, you live by your own rules! You make things up! You create! You destroy! You tease temptation! You do all sorts of horrible things, most of them to me, yes, but then there are days you do good all on your own! You shouldn't let something like Karma run your life! You need to be rude and nasty and gross and weird, so that you can be good on your own accord.
  • Can You Imagine That?:
    • After Hobbes gives a scathing speech to Calvin, he retorts with one of these:
      "Come on, Hobbes! Don't give up now! We're doing great! We've only been gone for about five hours. If we haven't figured out everything in another five, then it will be okay to give up. Hobbes, we've come too far to give up now! Just think of the fame we'll be getting if we succeed. Also, we're not just doing this for ourselves. We're doing for Susie and Moe and all the other kids. Sure, they're not so great, but do they deserve to miss out on summer vacation because of some wacko? NO, THEY DON'T! No child should have to spending summer vacation in some place we don't know about yet. I feel sorry for those schools that have year-round school years, and I wish I could help them, but I can't. This is my way of helping innocent kids get their time off from school to be enjoyable, as all summer vacations should. If you want to go home, fine, but I'm in it for the long run. I'm not giving up until I've rescued those kids!"
    • Later, after Calvin believes his overactive imagination has doomed the world, Hobbes cheers him up with this:
      "Calvin, if it wasn't for your 'weirdness', we would never have had all the adventures we've had. If you weren't weird, you'd have never of thought to build a Transmogrifier/ duplicator/ time machine. You'd have never thought to make a snowman come to life, only for it to become a Deranged, Mutant, Killer Monster Snow Goon. If it wasn't for you, G.R.O.S.S. wouldn't exist. Stupendous Man, Spaceman Spiff and Tracer Bullet wouldn't exist at all if it weren't for you. Calvin, your weirdness has made many lives to become more interesting. If there's one thing I can count on to get me out of boredom, it's to drag me on some sort of adventure that I'll hate at first but love later on."
  • Furutani, her former zanjutsu teacher, does this for Yuzu in the Bleach fanfic Chasing the Moon. It's in the middle of the story when she's depressed about Byakuya and worried in her role in the upcoming battle against the Big Bad Kyoka Suigetsu. She responds by taking over the Sixth Division when Byakuya gets injured, leading them into battle, achieving bankai, and going on after Kyoka Suigetsu herself.
    Furutani: You know what some people don't get? They think that swords are the only way to fight someone. So they come into the class, all brash and hot-headed, thinking they're going to walk out of it like some hardened warrior. And you know, some of them do pretty well. The other Kurosaki and Ankoujin—those two were some of the best swordsmen to come through my class in a long time. But some people just suck at it, and then they give up. They think they're not much of a fighter at all. They don't get that the sword is supposed to be where the battle ends, not where it starts. You on the other hand, Kurosaki…the first day you walked into my class, I knew. This is a girl who has been fighting battles without swords her whole life. You knew what the class was supposed to be about. I didn't have to teach you. After that, teaching you how to use a sword was just icing on the cake. You may look like an angel, but you're steel where it counts, and I'd hate to see some noble make you forget that.
  • In the Facing the Future Series, when Danny and Dash go into the Ghost Zone to save Sam and Paulina, Dash has a freak out that he'll never be as brave as Danny. Danny says this:
    "Dash, listen to me. Yes, it's EASY to save people when you can fly through walls at 100 miles an hour or lift a school bus over your head. But take it from me, when you CAN'T do things like that and you try anyway, that's the REALLY heroic thing to do. You don't think it took guts for you to get this far? How many other people would have been begging me to take them home by now? Okay, so you're scared. That's fine, accept it. You're still here, aren't you? Hold onto that".
  • In the first chapter of Children of an Elder God, Gendo tries to talk his son into getting in an Humongous Mecha and fighting the giant, arachnid Eldritch Abomination that has invaded the city together with its spawn. Shinji thinks that he'll let his father down if he refuses, so he agrees.
  • In Purple Days, Joff gathers six second sons, bastards and lesser lords in Winterfell, and proposes a wager: all of them, at the same time, versus him alone. Should any of them win, they all get the equivalent of two years' pay for an idea Joffrey's working on. But if he wins, they'll all serve him loyally and with honor. With a bit of prodding at Willard Mooton to begin, Joff handily wins, starting his Royal Legion. Of particular note, he promises Olyvar Frey a genuine Band of Brothers, contrasting his horrible home life at the Twins, honor and bravery to Willard Mooton, whose family is seen as a bunch of useless cowards, and loyalty to Jon Snow. He has to get a little more creative to get his cousin Lancel to step out of his role as the family idiot and join.
  • In Neither a Bird nor a Plane, it's Deku!, having powers good enough to become a Hero is not Izuku's issue, but after almost killing his best friend as a kid with his Super-Strength, he's deathly afraid of using them and hurting someone, which caused him to swear off his dream of being a hero. After a fateful encounter with his idol All Might and discussing whether someone like him deserves to be a hero, All Might tells him that all that matters is whether Izuku wants to be a hero or not. When Izuku replies that, yes, he does want to be a hero, All Might's response is:
    "Then be one, and don't let anyone stop you."
  • In Persona: The Sougawa Files, after Rina awakens to her Persona, Gilgamesh challenges her in this fashion.
    "You dare call upon me? Do you truly believe you can wield my power? Hmph! Very well! I am Gilgamesh, King of Heroes! Together, we will look to the future and crush our opposition! Now, prepare to defend yourself!"
  • Maybe the Last Archie Story: As hunting down Doctor Doom -who has kidnapped their friend Sabrina and ran away using a time machine-, Archie's gang meet January McAndrews, an agent of the Time Police. January explains that Doom is attempting to restructure all timelines from his shelter in the Limbo Stream. The Time Police cannot get there, but the gang does. When Veronica points out they are just high-schoolers, McAndrews replies they are more capable than they think they are.
    Veronica Lodge: "Wait. Wait just a minute, Ms. Andrews. I mean, McAndrews. Listen. We're not a commando team. We've had our share of adventures, sure. But...we're just high school kids. Or we were, till a couple of weeks ago. We're not up to swimming around in gray pea soup and busting into any structures. We're just...who we are."
    January McAndrews: "True. But you have no appreciation of who you are, Ms. Lodge. Any hero is just a normal person, until called upon to do extraordinary things. Our greatest agent of your time is one of yourselves. I doubt you would believe it, should I give you the name. But you must take it on faith that I speak the truth."
  • In The God of Destruction comes to Remnant, Gojira tells Weiss to gather allies and go after her father Jacques Schnee when she laments on how her father Jacques has control of the Schnee Dust Company and is running it into the ground with his greed and racism while adding that she can't stop him alone.
    Gojira(to Weiss): "You said you know what he's doing. So, don't just stand here and watch from the sidelines; go and fix the issue. ... Tell me, Schnee. Who would you rather be? Your grandfather? Or your father? I wonder: will you be exceptional? Or just another parasite?"
  • Reality Collides: The Ezekiel Chronicles: When Ezekiel calls out Katie and Sadie for being so dependent on each other, he ends his speech by encouraging them to give their best efforts in the challenge.
  • Villain Song (Roving Otter) : Valentino gently encourages Asha to confront Magnifico by telling her to be brave.

    Films — Animated 
  • The song "I'll Make A Man Out Of You" from the 1998 film Mulan is basically about this.
    Tranquil as a forest
    But on fire within.
    Once you find your center
    You are sure to win.
    • And the chorus:
      Be a Man!
      We must be swift as a coursing river
      Be a Man!
      With all the force of a great typhoon
      Be a Man!
      With all the strength of a raging fire
      Mysterious as the dark side of the moon!
  • Both Stan Bush songs in Transformers: The Movie. There is of course the more popular "The Touch", but more blatant is the first lyrical song in the movie, "Dare".
  • The Hunchback of Notre Dame: The Gargoyles do this for Quasimodo, to get him to literally and metaphorically break from his chains and rescue Esmerelda.
    Victor: We're only made of stone
    Laverne: We just thought maybe you were made of something stronger...
  • The Incredibles: Edna Mode's friendly pep talk to Helen Parr.
    Helen: [Sobs] Now I'm losing him! Oh, what'll I do, what'll I do...?
    Edna: What are you talking... about?
    Helen: Hm?
    Edna: [Jumps onto table with rolled-up newspaper] You are Elastigirl! My God, (smacks her with a rolled-up newspaper) pull! yourself! together! "What will you do"—Is-is this a question?! You will show him that you remember that he is Mr. Incredible and you will remind him who you are. Well, you know where he is, go, confront the problem. Fight—Win!... And call me when you get back, darling, I enjoy our visits.
  • Rango gets one of the most direct Dare to Be Badass speeches ever:
    Rango: I’m a fraud! I’m a phony! My friends believed in me, but they need some kind of...hero.
    The Spirit of the West: Then be a hero.
  • The Lion King (1994) has the spirit of Mufasa give one to an adult Simba, who has been running away from his responsibilities.
    Mufasa: Simba, you have forgotten me.
    Simba: No! How could I?
    Mufasa: You have forgotten who you are, and so have forgotten me. Look inside yourself, Simba. You are more than what you have become. You must take your place in the circle of life.
    Simba: How can I go back? I'm not who I used to be.
    Mufasa: Remember who you are. You are my son, and the one true King. [fading] Remember who you are... Remember... Remember... Remember...
  • A subtle example in Big Hero 6, when Tadashi takes his brother Hiro to his lab at San Fransokyo Tech instead of a nearby 'bot-fight. His friends at the 'nerd lab' show Hiro their latest experiments, Tadashi demonstrates Baymax and then introduces Hiro to Professor Callaghan, a pioneer in robotics. The implied message is "You can do more with your life than just hustling robot-fights," and by the end of the visit, Hiro goes from scoffing the 'nerd lab' to wanting to apply for a scholarship.
  • Rainbow Dash gets a song titled "Time to be Awesome" in My Little Pony: The Movie (2017).
  • Astrid dares Hiccup to be badass in this scene from How to Train Your Dragon:
    Hiccup: Three hundred years, and I'm the first Viking who wouldn't kill a dragon.
    Astrid: First to ride one, though. So...?
    Hiccup: I wouldn't kill him... because he looked as frightened as I was. I looked at him, and I saw myself.
    Astrid: I bet he's really frightened now. What are you going to do about it?
    Hiccup: Eh, probably something stupid.
    Astrid: Good, but you've already done that.
    Hiccup: ...Then something crazy.
    Astrid: That's more like it.
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse: Throughout much of the film, everyone has been telling Miles Morales that he is capable of being more than he is, all that's holding him back is low self-confidence. After the death of Uncle Aaron, and a pep-talk from his father, Miles finally takes the leap of faith needed to embrace his new role as Spider-Man, and swing over to join the Spider-Gang in the final fight against the Kingpin, all while the song "What's Up Danger" is playing in the background.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The King's Speech centers on Lionel Logue invoking this trope early and often with Albert/King George.
  • Braveheart: William Wallace points out that while the Scotsmen could very well run away and live, they should stay and fight because "Every man dies, but not every man truly lives". Also a Rousing Speech.
    • Wallace's speech at Stirling is almost purely this trope:
      Wallace: .... Will you fight!?
      Scotsman: Fight? Against that? No! We will run, and we will live.
      Wallace: Aye, fight and you may die. Run, and you'll live, at least a while. And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willing to trade all the days from this day to that for one chance—just one chance!—to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take our FREEDOM!!!
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Iron Man
      • This conversation:
        Yinsen: This is your life's work! In the hands of those murderers. What're you gonna do about it?? Huh? Is that the way you're going to go out? Is this the last act of defiance of the great Tony Stark?
        Stark: They'll kill me. You. And even if they don't I'll be dead in a week anyway.
        Yinsen: [almost smirking] Well, then....this is an important week for you, isn't it?
      • Done even better when a news report shows the devastation being caused by the terrorists. The newswoman says, "....these villagers are left to wonder: WHO, if anyone, will help..." As the newscast is playing, Tony is stewing in impotent anger while tweaking his hand repulsor glove after learning that Stane was double-dealing under the table to the bad guys; at that moment in the newscast, Stark blasts loose a workbench hood light with his brand new repulsors in inarticulate rage... and then after thinking a second, very calmly blows out a trio of windows in the room as if he were in a shooting gallery. After he contemplates the weaponized application of the hand repulsor, it cuts to the Lock-and-Load Montage, leitmotif blaring, as he dons the Mark III suit for the first time and flies off to Afghanistan to kick some ass.
    • Avengers: Age of Ultron:
      • Delivered by Nick Fury to rouse the Avengers into continuing the fight.
        Fury: Here we all are, with nothing but our wit and our will to save the world. So stand, and fight.
      • Clint gives Wanda a "No More Holding Back" Speech to this effect during her brief Heroic BSoD during the final battle. She steps out the door.
        Clint: It doesn't matter what you did, or what you were. If you go out there, you fight, and you fight to kill. Stay in here, you're good, I'll send your brother to come find you — but if you step out that door, you are an Avenger.
    • Ant-Man:
      • Henry Pym offers Scott Lang the chance to turn his life around by putting on the Ant-Man suit:
        "Second chances don't come around all that often. I suggest you take a really close look at it. This is your chance to earn that look in your daughter's eyes, to become the hero that she already thinks you are."
    • In Captain Marvel (2019), Maria Rambeau gives the Amnesiac Hero a Rousing Speech about the Carol Danvers she knew to convince her to do what is right. Later on, Maria's spirited 11-year-old Monica calls on her mother to help Carol in the final battle, asking Maria to consider what sort of example she'd be setting by staying behind and watching TV.
    • In Spider-Man: Far From Home, Happy Hogan combines this with You Are Better Than You Think You Are when he helps patch up Peter.
      Peter Parker: Everywhere I go, I see his face...and the whole world is asking who's gonna be the next Iron Man, and...I don't know if that's me, Happy, I'm not Iron Man.
      Happy Hogan: You're not Iron Man. You're never gonna be Iron Man. Nobody can live up to Tony, not even Tony. Tony was my best friend, and he was a mess. He second-guessed everything he did, he was all over the place. The one thing he did that he didn't second-guess was picking you. I don't think Tony would've done what he did if he didn't know you were gonna be here after he was gone. Your friends are in trouble, you're all alone, tech is missing...what are you gonna do about it?
    • In Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Clea in The Stinger invites Strange to accompany her into what appears to be the Dark Dimension so he could help her stop an Incursion that he caused during the events of the movie. When Clea questions Strange's bravery in being willing to engage in such a task, Strange responds simply by suiting up.
  • Star Trek:
    • In, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Kirk is clearly suffering a mid-life crisis from being an Admiral. In their own different ways, his two pals McCoy and Spock basically tell him to stop being a typical middle-aged white guy, get up off his ass, and get back to being The Captain we all know and love.
      McCoy: You're hiding. Hiding behind rules and regulations.
      Kirk: Who am I hiding from?
      McCoy: From yourself, Admiral.
      Kirk: Don't mince words, Bones. What do you really think?
      McCoy: Jim, I'm your doctor and I'm your friend. Get back your command. Get it back before you turn into part of this collection. Before you really do grow old.

      Spock: If I may be so bold, it was a mistake for you to accept promotion. Commanding a starship is your first, best destiny. Anything else is a waste of material."
    • In Star Trek: Generations, as Kirk meets Picard:
      Kirk: Captain of the Enterprise, huh?
      Picard: That's right.
      Kirk: Close to retirement?
      Picard: I'm not planning on it.
      Kirk: Let me tell you something. Don't. Don't let them promote you. Don't let them transfer you. Don't let them do anything that takes you off the bridge of that ship, because while you're there, you can make a difference.
    • In Star Trek (2009), Pike asks Kirk whether he wants to continue to be "the only genius-level repeat offender in the Midwest" or put his skills to some actual use. Besides literally daring Kirk to "do better," Pike tells him that if he's even half the man his father was, then Kirk will make a great Captain. CMoH/CMoA.
      • Spock Prime telling Kirk to "re"-take the Enterprise can also be this. I mean, what's more badass than trying to piss off a Vulcan?
      • From the same movie. "Either they're going down, or we are."
  • Inglourious Basterds
    Lt. Aldo Raine: We will be cruel to the Germans, and through our cruelty they will know who we are. And they will find the evidence of our cruelty in the disemboweled, dismembered and disfigured bodies of their brothers we leave behind us, and the German won't be able to help themselves but to imagine the cruelty their brothers endured at our hands, and our boot heels, and the edge of our knives. And the German will be sickened by us, and the German will talk about us, and the German will fear us. And when the German closes their eyes at night and their tortured by their subconscious for the evil that they've done, it will be with thoughts of us that they are tortured with. Sound good?!
  • Back to the Future:
    • George McFly's mantra that "If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything" in the first film isn't really one of these until his son tells him this in a desperate attempt to get him to marry his mother and thus ensure his existence.
    • Back to the Future Part III:
      • Subverted when the local townsfolk of 1885 Hill Valley attempt to use something like this on Marty to get him to duel with Mad Dog Tannen, basically telling him that if he doesn't face him "you'll be branded a coward for the rest of your days", but it's mostly because they're betting on the outcome one way or another. However, Marty proves his awesomeness by not going through with the duel. And further subverted in that he still manages to kick Tannen's ass.
      • At the end, Doc delivers one to Marty and his girlfriend Jennifer when the fax message telling the future Marty he's fired gets erased.
        Jennifer: Dr. Brown, I brought this note back from the future and now it's erased.
        Doc: Of course it's erased!
        Jennifer: But what does that mean?
        Doc: It means your future hasn't been written yet. No one's has. Your future is whatever you make it. So make it a good one, both of you.
  • Alfred does these highly effectively in the The Dark Knight Trilogy:
    • Batman Begins:
      Alfred: [after Bruce has gotten his ass kicked by Ra's al Ghul and Wayne Manor burns, while he's trapped under a piece of furniture] Sir, what was the point of all those push-ups if you can't even lift a bloody log?
      • Ducard started the Badass Dare trend with his introduction to Bruce Wayne.
        Ducard: If you make yourself more than just a man, if you devote yourself to an ideal and if they can't stop you, you become something else entirely: a legend, Mister Wayne.
    • The Dark Knight:
      Bruce: People are dying, Alfred. What would you have me do?
      Alfred: Endure, Master Wayne. Take it. They'll hate you for it, but that's the point of Batman. He can be the outcast. He can make the choice that no one else can make: The right choice.
    • The Dark Knight Rises has an interesting deconstruction of this. The old man in the Pit tells Bruce that he mistakenly thinks that his complete lack of fear of dying makes him strong. To regain the ability to fight when you're totally beaten, to do the impossible, one must be afraid again. It's simply, "dare to FEAR. And in so doing, become a badass again."
      Blind Prisoner: You do not fear death. You think this makes you strong. It makes you weak.
      Bruce: Why?
      Blind Prisoner: How can you move faster than possible, fight longer than possible without the most powerful impulse of the spirit: the fear of death.
      Bruce: I do fear death. I fear dying in here, while my city burns, and there's no one there to save it.
      Blind Prisoner: Then make the climb.
      Bruce: How?
      Blind Prisoner: As the child did. Without the rope. Then....fear will find you again.
  • In X-Men: First Class, Charles Xavier, one by one takes his motley crew of mutants and gets them to reach their true potential, none more memorable than Erik Lehnsherr. He literally dares him to use his powers to turn a giant satellite dish located at least a mile away. Especially poignant because Erik up to that point was impressed with his own ability to deflect bullets and control smaller metal objects. He never considered doing anything greater than that until Charles suggested it.
  • Captain Mal Reynolds "Aim to Misbehave" speech to the crew of the Serenity has some shades of this. Specifically he tells his crew he's "asking more of them than he ever has before."
  • In Mission: Impossible II, after Anthony Hopkins character gives Hunt his latest oddball mission, Hunt points out that what he's being asked to do is 'pretty difficult'. In what is possibly one of the movie's best lines, he responds, "Well, this isn't "Mission: Difficult", Mr. Hunt, it's "Mission: Impossible". "Difficult" will be a walk in the park."
  • Star Wars: "Use the Force, Luke... Let go Luke... Luke — trust me". Complete with Rousing Music.
    • One of the teaser trailers for The Phantom Menace had Qui-Gon deliver one of these, presumably to Anakin:
      Qui-Gon It will be a hard life. One without reward. Without remorse. Without regret. A path will be placed before you. The choice is yours alone. Do what you think you cannot do. It will be a hard life. But in the end you will find out who you are.
  • The Terminator: "On your feet soldier!" Sarah Connor to Kyle Reese.
  • Men of Honor: To future Handicapped Badass and eventual Master Chief Carl Brashear:
    Chief Billy Sunday: "A navy diver is not a fighting man. He is a salvage expert. If he's lucky, he'll die young 300 feet beneath the waves; for that is the closest he will ever get to being a hero. Hell, I don't know why anyone would wanna be a Navy diver! Now you report to this line, Cookie!"
  • This is essentially the message of Wanted. The Movie anyway.
  • "You're a hero for GOD's sake, Hancock! And you will never be at peace 'til you accept that."
  • Lennox to Sam Witwicky in the climax of Transformers (2007), when the latter protests that he can't take the cube to safety: "Listen to me! You're a soldier now! All right, I need you to take this cube. Get it into military hands while we hold them off, or a lot of people are gonna die."
    • Even earlier, Sam to Micheala. "Twenty years from now, when you look back on your life, don't you want to be able to say you had the courage to get in the car?"
  • Crimson Tide: Lt. Cmdr. Hunter telling a young radio operator that he needs radio communication. Oddly, he's quoting Star Trek.
    Hunter: You're Scotty. I'm Kirk. And I need warp speed on that radio. Now.
  • Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves: Azeem gives a pretty badass one to an entire crowd of peasants in the climax:
    Azeem: English! English! Behold, Azeem Edin Bashir Al Bakir. I am not one of you, but I fight! I fight with Robin Hood. I fight against a tyrant who holds you under his boot! If you would be free men, then you must fight! Join us now, join Robin Hood!
    • Robin Hood himself puts in a good one earlier when he convinces the refugees of Sherwood to join him against the Sheriff:
      "The Sheriff calls us outlaws, but I say we are free! And one free man defending his home is more powerful than ten hired soldiers. The Crusades taught me that. I will make you no promises, save one: that when you truly believe in your hearts that you're free, then I say we can win!"
  • The chorus from the opening song in Casino Royale (2006) puts a darker spin on this trope, basically couching it in a warning that if you don't Take a Level in Badass, you will be dead very quickly:
    Arm yourself, because no one else here will save you
    The odds will betray you
    And I will replace you...
  • Henry V: The St. Crispin's Day speech.
    We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
    For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
    Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
    This day shall gentle his condition;
    And gentlemen in England now-a-bed
    Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here,
    And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
    That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.
  • Undercover Brother, when everything seems to be going wrong and Lance, the 'Token White' in the organisation, starts panicking:
    Undercover Brother: There are times for falling apart, and there are times for getting' funky. This is one of them funky times. So what's it gonna be? You ready to play some funky music, white boy?
  • There are several of these in Rough Riders, most noticeably when Nash stops malingering and rejoins his company in time to take Little Round Top.
  • The usual response gets subverted in Johnny English:
    Lorna Campbell: What are you going to do? Sit in this grotty flat feeling sorry for yourself, or are you going to get out there and save your country?
    Johnny English: I'm going to sit in the flat.
  • Two from Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story:
    • First, from his father, after he gives him some money to move to America:
      Bruce: I don't know what to say...
      Father: Say you'll do better. Tell me you'll make a big noise in America... so I can hear it over here.
    • Later, after getting into a fight with coworkers at the Chinese restaurant where he works, Bruce Lee receives a "The Reason You Suck" Speech from his boss, but it eventually turns into a Dare to Be Badass speech:
    Miss Yang: Sit down. (hands him some money) Two weeks pay, two weeks severance.
    Bruce: What's this?
    Miss Yang: All-purpose loan. You got a lot of money, Lee. what you gonna do?
    Bruce: I guess I'd better—
    Miss Yang: I tell you what to do. Take April on the town. Buy her nice clothes. Check into big hotel. Have lots of sex. Have food brought up to you in bed. Drink champagne and whiskey. Now money all gone. April be gone, too, like money. You come back to me. I put you in kitchen, wash dishes to pay back loan. By that time you're no longer young, you're no longer handsome. You're nothing but a... dishwasher. That one choice. There are others.
    Bruce: Like what?
    Miss Yang: They say education is good. hmm. I've heard that. Me, personally... I hope you go with April. I can always use a good... dishwasher!
  • Played with in Pacific Rim, when Pentecost dares Raleigh to become a Jaeger pilot again after his retirement.
    Pentecost: Haven't you heard, Mister Beckett? The world is coming to an end. So where would you rather die? Here? Or in a Jaeger?
  • Recruit training in Full Metal Jacket, courtesy of the original Drill Sergeant Nasty.
    Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: If you ladies leave my island, if you survive recruit training, you will be a weapon. You will be a minister of death praying for war. But until that day you are pukes. You are the lowest form of life on Earth. You are not even human fucking beings. You are nothing but unorganized grab-asstic pieces of amphibian shit! Because I am hard, you will not like me. But the more you hate me, the more you will learn. I am hard, but I am fair. There is no racial bigotry here. I do not look down on niggers, kikes, wops, or greasers. Here you are all equally worthless. And my orders are to weed out all non-hackers who do not pack the gear to serve in my beloved Corps.
  • In The Last Starfighter, after Alex refuses to join the Star League's Space Navy as a fighter pilot, Centauri uses this as a last-ditch attempt to recruit him.
    Centauri: You're walking away from history, boy! History! Did Chris Columbus say that he wanted to stay home? No! What if the Wright Brothers thought that only birds should fly? And did Geloca think the Yulus were too ugly to save?
    Alex: Who's Geloca?
    Centauri: (Beat) Never mind.
    Alex: Centauri, listen, I'm not any of those guys! I'm a kid from a trailer park.
    Centauri: If that's what you think, then that's all you'll ever be. (drives away)
  • Whip It dares its main character to be badass with a single line from the cool mom.
    Maggie Mayhem: Well, put some skates on, be your own hero.
  • In Armageddon (1998), The Team has arrived at NASA, and are cracking jokes with Harry. Jump Cut to the conference room where they have just been given the bad news and most of them didn’t take it too well.
    Harry Stamper: None of you has to go. We can all just sit here on Earth, and wait for this big rock to crash into it, killing everything and everyone we know. The United States government just asked us to save the world. Anyone gonna say no?
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: During one of the training sessions in Dumbledore's Army, Harry gives a brief speech regarding this, urging each member to try their very best to reach their full magical potential.
    Harry: Working hard is important. But there is something that matters even more, believing in yourself. Think of it this way; every great wizard in history has started out as nothing more than what we are now: students. If they can do it, why not us?
  • A gloriously understated one occurs in the climax of Bubble Boy, as Jimmy's father, who is normally The Voiceless, encourages his son.
    Mr. Livingston: H-How was it out there? Was it fun? *Beat* You can see the moon today. You know, it kind of makes you wonder... What would have happened if Neil Armstrong had gone all the way to the moon... and then never stepped on the surface? (Silently unlocks the doors for Jimmy)
  • Master and Commander has another brilliantly understated one, in a way only the British can do it. Badass Adorable Plucky Middie Blakeney has his arm broken in the opening battle and the limb gets amputated. Blakeney is in a hammock recovering from the painful and traumatic surgery when tough Father Neptune Captain Aubrey pops in to give a stern word of advice to the boy and drop off a gift ("You are the reading sort"), and then he excuses himself. Blakeney opens the book... and there is a magnificent illustration of Horatio Nelson, also missing an arm.
  • Men in Black has a simple one. After K gives his recruitment spiel to James, including the sacrifices he'll have to make, James asks "Is it worth it?". K replies "Oh yeah... if you're strong enough."

Men wanted for hazardous journey. Low wages, bitter cold, long hours of complete darkness. Safe return doubtful. Honour and recognition in event of success.
Often reported as the words of a newspaper "Want Ad" taken out by Sir Ernest Shackleton for his ultimately ill-fated (but undeniably badass) Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition. Alas, there's no evidence that the ad ever ran in any known newspaper or magazine (and lots of people have looked), which is why it's in this folder and not "Advertising" or "Real Life".

  • In The Dresden Files Ghost Story Harry, acting as a mentor to a young man named Fitz under the control of a minor-level warlock, gives one to Fitz to help break free of the warlock's control and help save the other kids under the warlock's thrall.
    "You run now, and you're going to spend your whole life running. This is a crossroads. This is where your life takes form. Here. Now. This moment. ... I know what I'm talking about, kid. Every time you're alone in the dark, every time you go by a mirror, you're going to remember this moment. You're going to see who you've become. And you'll either be the man who ran away while his own crew and three good men died, or be the man who stood tall and did something about it. ... Look, kid. All that matters is the answer to the question: Which of those men do you want to be? ... Which man, Fitz?"
  • Earth and...: When Athens is threatened by fire, Gradin asks Jarra what kind of pilot, and person, she wants to be: the kind who'll stand by and let Athens burn, or the kind who'll do something about it. They spend days fighting the fire together.
  • Harry Potter: At the end of Goblet of Fire, Dumbledore tells Fudge to accept Voldemort's return, remove the Dementors from Azkaban, and send envoys to the Giants. He tells Fudge if he takes these steps, he will be remembered as one of the bravest and greatest Ministers of Magic; if Fudge refuses, he will be remembered as the man who stepped aside and allowed Voldemort to destroy everything the Wizarding World has tried so hard to rebuild. As seen in Order of the Phoenix, Fudge refuses and indeed allows those very things to happen by getting in Dumbledore's way and trying to arrest him. And when the magical society as a whole finds out that Fudge had spent almost an entire year covering up any news of Voldemort returning with power, major outrage predictably happens and Fudge is pressured into shamefully resigning, with his legacy mostly consisting of being a failure of a Minister.
  • Bell does this to himself in Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?. After being rescued from a Minotaur by Aiz again, he forces himself to get up and face the thing on his own. As he points out, how can he become stronger if people are always rescuing him? The result is one of the most badass moments of the entire series.
    Bell: If I don't stand up here... If I don't reach higher here... When am I ever going to do it?
  • In Lord of the Flies, when Piggy tries to stand up to Jack to get his glasses back. It gets him killed, but it's the effort that counts.
  • In the Little House on the Prairie novel These Happy Golden Years, Almanzo Wilder explains to Laura Ingalls why he came to bring her home from her teaching job for the weekend even though it's a twenty-four-mile round trip and the temperature is forty below: his friend Cap Garland, seeing Almanzo deliberating, looked from him to the thermometer and back and said simply, "God hates a coward."
    Laura: So you came because you wouldn't take a dare?
    Almanzo: No, it wasn't a dare. I just figured he was right.
  • A Mage's Power: Kasile uses one of these at the climax. When Eric has given up completely and it looks like the bad guy has won, she reminds him of all the incredible things he's done. In this way inspires him to confront Dengel and save the day.
  • The Memory Wars: Played with in Locked Within, since Roland at face value, tells Nathan not to be a badass, but to go home and forget what he's learned, but is still pleased when Nathan does just the opposite. Coming up to the climax of the book, he tells Nathan he can either leave and be with his fatally wounded father or go and save the day.
  • Nevermoor: In the climax of the third book, Morrigan recieves a speech to this effect from, of all people, the Big Bad, when they're forced to pull an Enemy Mine. When she shows doubt in her abilities, he very bluntly tells her that this is not the time nor the place, and reminds her of all the things she's done that that have made him respect her as a fellow Wundersmith, and tells her he wants to talk to that Morrigan. As he puts it, "Now is not the time to be small."
  • Reign of the Seven Spellblades: Headmistress Esmeralda's customary orientation speech to new Kimberly Magic Academy students is a dramatic address that approximately one in five students will not survive to graduate in seven years and they alone are responsible for their own success. This is then customarily immediately undercut by the second-years reassuring the new first-years that (most of) the upperclassmen and (some of) the teachers actually do have their backs. Or in the case of the protagonists, by Fish out of Water Nanao Hibiya randomly suggesting a headache remedy to the headmistress for no apparent reason after she finishes her speech.
    Esmeralda: The two tenets of our academy spirit are "freedom" and "results." Obviously, these are both predicated on self-responsibility. Thus, a simpler way of expressing this would be "Your life and death are in your own hands."
  • Margo Smith of Time Scout was driven out of her home by her abusive father, who laughed at her dreams of being a time scout.
  • The Unknown Soldier: The Ensign Newbie 2nd Lieutenant Kariluoto strongly feels this way about his duty for the country. He suffers from a bad case of Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life, and with the militaristic ideology of the day, he sees being a soldier for the fatherland as a higher calling.

    Live-Action TV 
  • 24:
    • In Season 2, Jack is suffering a Heroic BSoD after the death of his wife, so he volunteers to fly the nuke into the desert, ready to die. CTU Head George Mason, dying of radiation poisoning, slips onto the plane, and says a few words to Jack, telling him that a better man would try to put his life back together.
      Mason: Come on, Jack, you've had a death wish ever since Teri died. The way things have been going for you the past year and a half, this probably doesn't look like such a bad idea. You get to go out in a blaze of glory, one of the greatest heroes of all time, leave your troubles behind. You still have a life, Jack. You wanna be a real hero, here's what you do: you get back down there and you put the pieces together. You find a way to forgive yourself for what happened to your wife. You make things right with your daughter and you go on serving your country. That'd take some real guts.
    • President Taylor uses one of these to convince Dalia Hassan to take control of the IRK's government and finish the peace. Consider all that happened before, it could only literally be a Dare to Be Badass.
  • In the penultimate episode of Angel, "Power Play", Angel reveals his plan to throw a temporary monkey wrench into the Senior Partners' plans for the Apocalypse by killing every member of the Circle of the Black Thorn.
    Angel: 10-to-1, we're gone when the smoke clears. They will do everything in their power to destroy us. So...I need you to be sure. Power endures. We can't bring down the Senior Partners, but for one bright, shining moment, we can show them that they don't own us. You need to decide for yourselves if that's worth dying for. I can't order you to do this. I can't do it without you. So we'll vote. As a team. Think about what I'm asking you to do, think about what I'm asking you to give.
  • ANZAC Girls: When Matron Grace Wilson is aghast to be faced with a "field hospital" that lacks even the most basic supplies, Colonel Fiaschi tells her, "The medical orderlies are as capable as any nurse and far more resilient. So if you are looking to change the Army's opinion of your profession, Lemnos is your challenge." Grace rose to said challenge so spectacularly it ultimately earned her the Royal Red Cross.
  • Babylon 5:
    • In "The Geometry of Shadows", Micheal Garibaldi has recently recovered from being in a coma after being shot In the Back by his second in command, thus preventing him from stopping the assassination of President Santiago. The new station commander, Captain Sheridan, comes to speak with him and finds Garibaldi sitting in his quarters, holding his pistol. Garibaldi puts the gun down to greet the Captain, and after a short conversation where Sheridan tries to talk Garibaldi into going back on duty, Sheridan picks up the pistol and places it back in its holster on the table.
      Sheridan: The Universe doesn't give you any points for doing things that are easy.
    • G'kar gets one of these from Kosh in "Dust to Dust" (worth seeing oneself). It marks his turning point towards becoming the most heroic character in the series. Made even better as it happens during G'kar's Mind Rape attack on Londo.
      Kosh: You have the opportunity, here and now to choose: to become something greater and nobler and more difficult than you have ever been before. The universe does not offer such chances often, G'kar.
  • In Battlestar Galactica (2003), the Cylons capture New Caprica, taking the humans there hostage and scaring off the Galactica and the Pegasus. Both ships choose to write off the hostages on New Caprica as losses and continue on their way, which quite frankly, is the smartest thing they can do, as they are ridiculously outnumbered and outgunned. Then, after thinking it over, Admiral Adama has this to say:
    "This is the Admiral. You've heard the news. You know the mission. You should also know that there is only one way this mission ends, and that's with the successful rescue of our people off of New Caprica. Look around you. Take a good look at the men and women that stand next to you. Remember their faces, for one day you will tell your children and your grandchildren that you served with such men and women that the universe has never seen. And together, you accomplished a feat that will be told and retold down through the ages and find immortality as only the gods once knew. I'm proud to serve with you. Good Hunting!"
  • The final episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, "Chosen".
    Buffy: Every girl who could have the power, will have the power. Can stand up, will stand up. Slayers, every one of us. Make your choice. Are you ready to be strong?
  • Chuck:
    • Sarah Walker gives one of these to Chuck at the end of the first episode.
      Sarah: Some people want to be heroes, and some have to be asked. Well, are you ready to be a hero, Chuck?
    • Jeff does this to get Lester to perform "Africa" in "Chuck vs. The Best Friend". He even quotes Eminem's "Lose Yourself".
      Jeff: I'm not asking you to do this for yourself. I'm asking you to do this... for me.
  • Doctor Who: This has pretty much been the Doctor's modus operandi since the get-go: convincing ordinary people to be extraordinary and save their world.
    "He's the Doctor: he makes people better."
    • "The Eleventh Hour" has a good one, when the Doctor challenges Jeff to "be magnificent":
      Listen to me. In ten minutes you’re going to be a legend. In ten minutes, everyone on that screen will be offering you any job you want but first you have to be magnificent. You have to make them trust you and get them working. This is it, Jeff, right here right now: This is when you fly. Today’s the day you save the world.
      Oh, and delete your Internet history.
    • "Victory of the Daleks": Churchill gets one too (how many shows can you say that for), when the Doctor is indisposed, inspiring Bracewell to take the fight to the Daleks, in characteristic Churchill style.
      Now I don't give a damn if you're a machine, Bracewell. Are you a man?
    • The Doctor does the same again in "Cold Blood", daring the humans and Silurians to reconcile and negotiate rather than give in to their inclinations to just wage war on each other. Sort of a peaceful badassery, but still counts.
      There are fixed points throughout time where things must stay exactly the way they are. This is not one of them. This is an opportunity! Whatever happens here will create its own timeline, its own reality, a temporal tipping point. The future revolves around you, here, now, so do good!
  • Fargo: In a philosophical conversation with Nikki, Paul Marrane urges her to overcome life's suffering nature and "deliver a message to the wicked."
  • Game of Thrones: Daenerys calls on the slaves of Meereen to rise against their oppressors in "Breaker of Chains", then Grey Worm leads an infiltration to provide them with another such speech and weapons in "Oathkeeper".
  • Heroes:
    • Daniel Linderman offers Nathan Petrelli a choice between an ordinary life and "a life of meaning."
    • And of course, the classic line from Hiro to Ando:
      Hiro: Fine. Stay here if you want. Be like everyone else. I want to boldly go where no man has gone before.
  • In the first season of House of the Dragon, Daemon Targaryen (Matt Smith) says this at one point:
    Daemon: You cannot live your life in fear, or you will forsake the best parts of it.
  • The musical episode of Lexx "Brigadoom" reveals that Kai's people the Brunnen-G actually wanted to die by the Divine Shadow's hand, having grown weary of immortality. Kai tried to convince them to go down fighting, believing that the race that once led humanity to victory against the Insect Civilization shouldn't just lie down and accept death. In the end, he was only able to convince his fellow Newborn Brunnen-G.
  • Malcolm in the Middle: In the series finale, Malcolm's family ruins a great career opportunity for him on purpose. When he demands to know why, they calmly explain that he's going to become President of the United States one day, and his life needs to be absolutely terrible so that he'll be the best President ever. Malcolm is incredulous, but his family doesn't even consider the outcome to be in doubt.
    Lois: You look me in the eye and tell me you can't do it.
  • Merlin (2008) has this gem from the fourth series finale while Merlin is trying to persuade Arthur to take the sword from the stone.
    Arthur: That sword is stuck fast in solid stone.
    Merlin: And you're going to pull it out.
    Arthur: Merlin, it's impossible.
    Merlin: Arthur, you're the true king of Camelot. [nods slightly but firmly]
    Arthur: Do you want me to look like a fool?
    Merlin: You aren't just anyone, you are special. You, and you alone, can draw out that sword.
  • Red Dwarf:
    • Subverted when Ace tries to recruit Rimmer as the next Ace Rimmer.
      Ace: It's your destiny, Arnie.
      Rimmer: What, to wind up looking like a reject from a Gay Pride disco?
    • However, Lister later gives a better one with the form of an Armor-Piercing Question. When Ace dies, Lister and Rimmer take him to the burial ground of all the Ace Rimmers who died. Upon seeing all the hard light projectors of the Ace Rimmer holograms who died in acts of heroism, enough to form a ring around a planet, Lister turns and asks Rimmer if he really wants to be the one to break that chain. This convinces Rimmer to take up the mantle.
  • Done in the form of an Armor-Piercing Question in the pilot of Space: Above and Beyond. Artificial Human Cooper Hawkes, an unwilling recruit to the USMC aerospace service, complains to fellow InVitro T.C. McQueen (a pilot with the elite Angry Angels squadron) that "I won't die for them!" (referring to the natural-born humans who have mistreated him all his life). McQueen challenges him, "What would you die for?"
  • Stargate Universe:
    • In the pilot, Col. Young tries to tell Gen. O'Neill that the people stranded on the Destiny are simply "not qualified" to be there. His response:
      "Oh, please. I wasn't qualified to take that first team through the Stargate... In the past dozen years or so, we've sent hundreds of teams through that thing. Fact is... nobody's qualified."
    • Rush gives one of these to Eli later, oddly as part of a pep talk to snap Eli out of his current funk (namely, his recently-dead girlfriend).
      "You know, we grew up taught to believe that everyone's equal — that you're no better than anyone else. Of course, that's a lie. Some are better than others, and it's those who recognize what makes them better and learn to exploit that who succeed. You've got so much potential, Eli. You're capable of success beyond your wildest dreams, but the only way that you can achieve that... Well, you got to make sure you don't get beaten down. You can't give up, not now when you're so close."
  • Star Trek seriously seems to have a thing for this trope; but then again being a classic American adventure story maybe this isn't surprising. It's even at the end of the traditional Opening Narration: "To boldly go where no man/one has gone before."
    • Consider the final episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation; Picard is back in time and ordering the Enterprise to take on a dangerous anomaly which will most likely destroy the ship. He reassures his confused crew with the classic line:
      Picard: I cannot explain why we have to do this. All I can say is that I know you can do this. Because... you are the finest crew in the fleet. Now, engage.
    • One of the greatest dares from TNG, the episode "Ethics", in which Worf is paralyzed and as a Klingon decides to commit suicide rather than live an invalid. He asks his best friend, Riker, to assist him and further tries to guilt-trip Riker into doing it, saying that a Klingon must protect his honor. Riker unleashes a speech that's part Dare to Be Badass, part "The Reason You Suck" Speech in which he basically tells Worf that if he were really a badass, he'd try to survive.
      Riker: Do you remember Sandoval? Hit with a disruptor blast two years ago. She lived for about a week. Fang-lee, Marla Aster, Tasha Yar! How many men and women, how many friends have we watched die? I've lost count. Every one of them, every single one, fought for life until the very end.
    • "Q Who" (a.k.a. The One with the Borg) has an incredible one from Q, of all people, basically telling Picard that even though the galaxy is filled with unstoppably powerful monsters that can kick your ass effortlessly, it's still too awesome not to keep exploring... if you have the balls:
      Q: If you can't take a little bloody nose, maybe you ought to go back home and crawl under your bed. It's not safe out here. It's wondrous, with treasures to satiate desires both subtle and gross... but it's not for the timid.
    • In "Yesterday's Enterprise":
      Picard: Let us make sure that history never forgets... the name... Enterprise.
    • From "Redemption":
      Gowron: What are you, Worf? Do you tremble and quake with fear at the approach of combat, hoping to talk your way out of a fight like a human? Or do you hear the cry of the warrior, calling you to battle, calling you to glory [Slasher Smile] like a Klingon?
    • And from the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "Return to Tomorrow", when Kirk wants to make contact with a race of powerful disembodied minds:
      Kirk: I'm in command. I could order this, but I'm not because Doctor McCoy is right in pointing out the enormous danger potential in any contact with life and intelligence as fantastically advanced as this, but I must point out that the possibilities; the potential for knowledge and advancement is equally great. Risk! Risk is our business. That's what this starship is all about. That's why we're aboard her. You may dissent without any prejudice. Do I hear a negative vote?
  • Subverted in the Supernatural episode "The Monster at the End of this Book":
    Dean: Chuck, you're the only shot that I've got left.
    Chuck: But... I'm just a writer.
    Dean: This isn't a story anymore, man. This is real! And you're in it! Now, I need you to get off your ass and fight. Come on, Chuck.
    [background music starts to swell]
    Chuck: No friggin' way.
  • At the end of Survivor Samoa, after a "The Reason You Suck" Speech to Russell, Erik explains to Natalie why she's got his vote:
    Erik: Natalie, people will call you weak. People will say that you are undeserving. But you know what? Why are those characteristics any less admirable as lying, cheating and stealing? Why does [Russell] get a free pass, but your "wrong way of playing" is admonished? If there's one thing I learnt in this game, it's that perception is not reality. Reality is reality. And you are sitting there, and that makes you just as dangerous as any one of those guys there. You would probably say that you were probably least deserving of the title sole survivor. But maybe, just maybe, in an environment filled with arrogance and delusional entitlement, maybe the person who thinks she's least deserving is probably the most. You got my vote.
    • Although this speech occurred when the game was almost over, he was essentially telling her: "don't let anyone tell you that you didn't work to make it this far. Get out there and prove yourself." And the best part? She won.
  • "You're Leo. The immortal Ultraman Leo. Don't forget that your life isn't yours to give! Now go!"
  • The pilot of The Unit features two of these, the first from Sergeant Major Jonas Blaine to new guy Bob Brown, getting him ready for his first mission. "The Universe has conspired to bring you here to this moment. You've been wanting this moment your whole life. Well, here it is.". This is then followed by Blaine's wife Molly talking to Brown's wife Kim, who are far away back at the base. Kim is mightily frustrated by the Unit lifestyle and is ready to leave, regardless of what it does to her husband's career in Special Forces. Molly basically tells her to stop whining and chill out and reconsider; resulting in a former page quote for this trope.

  • "Scots Wha Hae", by the great Scottish poet Robert Burns, purports to be Robert the Bruce's Rousing Speech to his troops before the Battle of Bannockburn. He offers to let any soldier 'wha will fill a coward's grave' flee, and proclaims "We will drain our dearest veins/But they shall be free!"
  • "Special Agent" by Universal Hall Pass: the story of the song seems to be about the titular operative approaching a young woman and offering not only his (her?) services and support (no need to run, I'm a special agent miss... go ahead and charge it on my credit card), but encouragement to... well, it's why the song is in this trope: should you decide you're your personal alchemist... go and earn what you've so long awaited. I know you'll do more than this
  • "Tutelary Genius" by Universal Hall Pass: A Dare to Be Badass speech essentially delivered to oneself: "unbind myself from the hamstrings/of yesterday's hit and run/no, I won't stand to be pinning myself/there's more pressing things to be done"
  • The second chorus of "Spirit Never Die" by Masterplan: Most of the song is sung by a Determinator about himself, but the second chorus goes like this: "Never give up! Never give in!/Rise from the fire if you're gonna win!/Sing with your soul, soon you'll be old/Fight the demons inside you!/There is no limit to what can be done!/Climb every mountain with power so strong!"
  • "Land of Confusion", from either Genesis or Disturbed. "This is the world we live in/and these are the hands we're given/Use them and let's start trying/To make it a place worth living in."
  • "Live to Win" by Paul Stanley. It's all about being a badass until the day you die.
  • Power Metal is made of this trope, but no band so much as Lost Horizon. Almost every song they wrote was some variant of this, most notably "Sworn in the Metal Wind":
    Now is really the time to wake up, you old jade
    Such as Phoenix spreads his fire wings
    I will help you remember by KICKING YOUR ASS!
  • "Dare" by Stan Bush. Hell, it's right there in the title.
    Dare! Dare to believe you can survive
    You hold the future in your hand
    Dare! Dare to keep all of your dreams alive
    It's time to take a stand
    And you can win, if you dare
  • Though the main artist credit was given to Dr. Dre in anticipation of it being on his album, Detox, everything but Dre's own verse on "I Need A Doctor" was originally written as one of these by Eminem from him to Dr. Dre.
    Can't make a decision, you keep questionin' yourself
    Second-guessin' and it's almost like you're beggin' for my help
    Like I'm your leader; you're supposed to fuckin' be my mentor
    I can endure no more, I demand you remember who you are!!
  • The Script's "Hall of Fame".
    Dedicate yourself and you can find yourself
    Standing in the Hall of Fame!
  • The Ballad Of The Green Berets: "A hundred men, will test today/ But only three, win the green beret."
  • The Corries' "Flower of Scotland", like the aforementioned "Scots Wha Hae", is about the Battle of Bannockburn, with the message "You've been badass before, be badass again!".
    Those days are past now,
    And in the past they must remain.
    But we can still rise now,
    And be the nation again,
    That stood against him,
    Proud Edward's army,
    And sent him homeward tae think again!

    Mythology and Religion 
  • The Bible: In the story of Esther, the evil Haman had convinced King Xerxes to execute every Jew in the kingdom, all because one Jew, Mordecai, would not bow to him. Mordecai sent word to Queen Esther, his cousin and surrogate daughter, daring her to (wo)man up and go to the King on her people's behalf.
    Then [Esther told the messenger] to say to Mordecai, "All the king’s officials and the people of the royal provinces know that for any man or woman who approaches the king in the inner court without being summoned the king has but one law: that they be put to death unless the king extends the gold scepter to them and spares their lives. But thirty days have passed since I was called to go to the king."
    When Esther’s words were reported to Mordecai, he sent back this answer: "Do not think that because you are in the king’s house you alone of all the Jews will escape. For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?"

    Professional Wrestling 
  • During the latter days of Zenjo, comparative rookie Nanae Takahashi was given an intentionally hopeless match again Lioness Asuka and told to "be ambitious".
  • Ryo Miyake managed to change Shin FMW from a Vanity Project centered around Tarzan Goto to a promotion centered around himself getting beaten up by Goto in garbage matches in Goto's attempts to make Miyake more manly.
  • In 2003, WWC was in need of a woman who looked good on television and Rico Suave saw the one who would become Black Rose in the audience and dared her to try her hand at wrestling. She refused on the grounds she neither liked wrestling nor knew how to, but when Suave saw her in the crowd the next week he took that as her acceptance, wouldn't take "no" for an answer, and told her to take down Stacy Colon.
  • In response to the chants of "Best In The World" at DGUSA's Open The Untouchable Gate, Bryan Danielson said that he didn't know if he would be able to continue to be the best wrestler in the world since he was going to WWE. He then laid out a challenge to all independent pro wrestlers to strive to take his place and singled out Davey Richards, demanding he take it.
  • Used for a Batman Gambit by Mickie James in TNA, stating she was going to be wrestling her best match and challenged Winter to set aside the foreign objects, blood mist, drugged zombie and all her other tricks unless she didn't think she could keep up. Winter took the bait and Mickie regained the Knockouts title...but then Winter went back to the tricks that let her win it in subsequent matches.
  • Brilliantly subverted by The Miz after he accomplished his dream and became World Champion... as a heel.
    If you remember anything about this speech, if you take anything with you from this speech, take this: If anyone says "You can't do something!", if anyone says "You can't live your dream!"... Believe them. Because you? Can't. It takes an exceptional person to prove everyone wrong, and I did just that. I am nothing like any of you...
  • Paul Heyman giving a famous pep-talk to the ECW talent before their first national pay-per-view:
    "You have all made it to the dance! Because, believe me, this is the dance!"

  • During the 1940 NFL regular season, the Washington Redskins beat the Chicago Bears 7-3. After the game, Redskins owner George Preston Marshall told reporters that the Bears were crybabies and quitters when the going got tough. The two teams would meet three weeks laters in the NFL Championship Game. During the run-up to the game, Bears head coach George Halas showed his players newspaper articles with Marshall's comments and told them, "gentlemen, this is what George Preston Marshall thinks of you. Well, I think you're a GREAT football team! Now, go out there and prove it!" The Bears beat the Redskins 73-0, scoring more points in an single game than any other team before or since and producing the most lopsided game in NFL history.
  • In the 2022 NFL playoffs, the divisional-round match between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Buffalo Bills was a hard-fought affair that featured no fewer than three touchdowns scored in the final two minutes of regulation, with the lead changing hands each time. After the third of these touchdowns, the game looked to be over— the Bills had a three-point lead with only thirteen seconds left on the clock, and the Chiefs starting at their own 25-yard line. As the Chiefs' offense prepared to take the field, coach Andy Reid expressed this sentiment to quarterback Patrick Mahomes, telling him, "When it's grim, be The Grim Reaper". Mahomes proceeded to throw a pair of passes to set up a last-second field goal, and the Chiefs won in overtime.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Blades in the Dark: A meta example. The manual exhorts players to be bold, ambitious and daring, pointing out that there are plenty of mechanisms that can be used to mitigate risks post facto, and that the type of person who values safety, regularity, and predictability is not the type of person who becomes a Blades In The Dark player character.
  • In Nomine: In addition to protecting dreaming minds, the Archangel Blandine considers a large part of her role to be inspiring people to actually act on their dreams. She can ensure people have a vision of a brighter world, but only they can make it real.

  • Cyrano de Bergerac: This trope is deconstructed in this play, the Dare to Be Badass is not a Call to Adventure from the Threshold Guardians, but a dare to Bullying a Dragon from a Jerkass. Hilarity Ensues:
    • Act I Scene IV: De Guiche casually dares Viscount De Valvert to bully Cyrano after he literally kicks a Bore's ass:
      De Guiche: [who, with the marquises, has come down from the stage] But he becomes a nuisance!
      Viscount de Valvert: [shrugging his shoulders] Swaggerer!
      De Guiche: Will no one put him down?...
      Viscount de Valvert: No one? But wait!
      I'll treat him of my quips!... See here!...
    • Act II Scene III: Lisa dares the Musketeer to bully Cyrano after he defends Raguenau’s honor. The Musketeer did not take the bait.
      Lise: [to the musketeer, who has merely bowed in answer to Cyrano's bow] How now? Is this your courage?...
      Why turn you not a jest on his nose?
      The Musketeer: On his nose?...ay, ay… his nose.
      [He goes quickly farther away; Lise follows him.]
    • Act II Scene IX: The cadets converse in front of Christian about Cyrano attitude towards his nose. Christian takes the hint about what they are asking him to do. Then Christian, not being really an idiot, asks Captain Carbon about what to do. Captain Carbon insists in this disturbingly horrific Initiation Ceremony:
      Christian: Captain!
      Carbon: [turning and looking at him from head to foot] Sir!
      Christian: Pray, what skills it best to do
      To Southerners who swagger?...
      Carbon: Give them proof
      That one may be a Northerner, yet brave! [He turns his back on him.]
      Christian: I thank you.
  • Hamlet constantly tries to talk himself into this mode. That's what the "To be, or not to be" soliloquy is about; suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, or just give up and sleep? Takes him a long time to get the point (several acts' worth), but when he does, he commits: "My thoughts be bloody, or be nothing worth!" And then everyone dies.
  • "Man Up" from The Book of Mormon is Elder Cunningham daring himself to be a badass
    Elder Cunningham: Watch me man up all over myself!

    Video Games 
  • The flash game 7 Deadly Sins has the main character challenged by a guy in a pub to commit the, well, Seven Deadly Sins, in a fortnight. His reward? ETERNAL DAMNATION!!
  • Bad Dudes: "President Ronnie has been kidnapped by Ninjas. Are you a bad enough dude to rescue the President?"
  • The back of the box for Choplifter! ends with the understated quote: "Don't blow it. Being a hero isn't easy, or everybody would be one."
  • Dark Souls II: The game's tagline challenged the player to "Go beyond death", while most of the characters in the game think you don't have a snowball's chance in hell of accomplishing anything. They've seen hundreds of Undead come and fail. The implicit challenge is: Prove the naysayers wrong!
    • Another one said to the player character after gathering the Crowns of the Lost Kings and letting Vendrick imbue them with the power to stop Hollowing is suitably epic; "Seek adversity... the rest will follow." Vendrick is basically commissioning you to take up where he left off and succeed where he failed and become the true monarch that can sit the Throne of Want, no matter the challenge that lies before you because he knows you can take it. Also doubles as a Last Request, as you get shunted out of the Memory of the King after he says this and can't go back, implying that these were his last words as a sane and Un-Hollowed man.
      You have a choice. Hunted... or hunter.
  • In Diablo II, Tyrael berates Marius for freeing Baal, telling him that he must find the courage to undo his mistake. He doesn't.
  • Diablo III: In the Demon Hunter class trailer, a female Demon Hunter happens upon a place where a group of people was massacred by demons. She manages to track down the only survivor: a terrified young woman who ran until she collapsed, and who upon seeing more demons approaching says "We're going to die here, aren't we?" The Demon Hunter says knows what it's like to feel powerless and afraid; she implies that something similar originally happened to her. But she saves the survivor by killing all of the attacking Demons with her crossbows and gadgets, and then offers one of her crossbows to the girl, saying "You have a choice: hunted, or hunter." The survivor takes the weapon, demonstrating that she wants to learn from the Demon Hunter how to face her fears and overcome her weakness. Word of God state that this is one of the Demon Hunters' primary recruiting methods.
  • In Dragon Age II, an Aggressive!Hawke can convince the Tal'Vashoth deserter to fight against his former comrades, telling him that kicking their asses would be a good way of establishing his worth as a mercenary.
  • EVE Online's new intro dares the player to be bold.
  • Fallout: New Vegas: The Courier can use this to convince Orion Moreno to fight for the NCR at Hoover Dam, telling him that he could leave, but doesn't he want to show those pansy-ass NCR troopers how a real soldier fights? He'll begrudgingly agree but states that he's not going to bother checking his fire.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy X: "Now! This is it! Now is the time to choose! Die, and be free of pain, or live, and fight your sorrow! Now is the time to shape your stories! Your fate is in your hands!"
    • Final Fantasy XIII: This is an Eidolon's typical response to their corresponding l'Cie slipping dangerously close to the Despair Event Horizon. You either prove to the Eidolon that you have the strength to persevere or they put you out of your misery. Fang only gets the latter right; Hope puts it all together after subduing Alexander.
  • The motto of Kenshi. You start out with less to your name than a mere grunt or slave NPC. The game challenges you to then claw your way to the top of the food chain by any means necessary.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time: "Art thou courageous?"
    • There was a now-infamous commercial for the game in the UK, featuring the tagline: "Wilst thou get the girl... Or play like one?" Not exactly the best choice of words, and was promptly Retconned. The US variant used "Wilst thou soar... or wilst thou suck?" instead.
  • In Mass Effect 2 you can give one of these to a sick krogan.
    Shepard: It would take a real badass to get up and walk back to camp in your condition.
    Krogan: I can do it!
    Shepard: You? I said a badass, not some scout whining like a quarian with a tummy ache!
    Tali: I'm Standing Right Here!
    Krogan: I can do it!
  • Mass Effect 3:
    • Garrus gives one to Shepard in the launch trailer.
      Go out there and give them hell. You were born to do this.
    • Wrex and Eve give one to the krogan people to convince them to stop fighting the rest of the galaxy and each other and instead fight a common enemy.
      Eve: ENOUGH! You can stay here and let old wounds fester, as krogan have always done, or you can fight the enemy you were born to destroy, and win a new future for our children! I choose to fight. Who will join me?
      Shepard: I will!
      Wrex: And so will I! Now hold your heads high like true krogan. THERE'S A REAPER THAT NEEDS KILLING!
  • Phantom of Mega Man Zero 3 gives one such speech after fighting the title character as an Optional Boss in a secret test.
    You truly did... have the soul of a hero... Go... Cross blades with Omega, and show what that body can do! Will your blade flinch after you know the truth? Do you have what it be a hero? You must be the one to determine that!
  • A strange example of this is Minecraft's ending, in which the apparent creators of the Minecraft universe praise your accomplishments in the "dream" of the game, and command you to do it again, in the real world this time.
  • No More Heroes: So what do you say? Join me. Could be fun. Could kick ass. Could totally suck. And for you there holding the Wii Remote, just press the A button, and let the bloodshed begin!
  • Overwatch: Winston's speech at the start of the game (and later repeated in the short "Rise and Shine") definitely qualifies. Who cares if being a hero is a criminal offense now? There's heroism to be had!
    Winston: The people decided they were better off without us. They even called us criminals! They tore our family apart. But look around! Someone has to do something! We have to do something! We can make a difference again. The world needs us now, more than ever! ...are you with me?
  • Persona 5 has its unique take on the trope with the awakening scenes. It begins with the Persona berating its user for allowing themselves to be defined and/or abused by the system, all while said user endures intense pain. Then, it inspires them to rise up, become something greater than themselves, and crush those who would oppress them and others, all by ripping off the mask and unleashing their rage.
  • Parodied in Psychonauts which opens with a dramatic, Patton-esque, kill-or-be-killed speech on the trials of becoming a Psychonaut delivered by a Drill Sergeant Nasty:... to an audience of terrified preteen children at summer camp.
  • Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey: Commander Gore will give you a speech daring you to look past the empty promises of power from both the angels and the demons. Agreeing to continue the mission and save Humanity, rejecting both sides' madness and forcing them to realize the power of Mankind never felt so good.
  • This is pretty much the whole premise of the X-Universe, daring the player character to be badass with only four words: TRADE. FIGHT. BUILD. THINK. The universe is your playground—what will you do?
  • The final Mission Objective of Saints Row IV is, simply, "Be a Badass".

  • The webcomic Great is either an Affectionate Parody of this trope or its greatest example.
  • Rome, to Italy in this Polandball comic, after the ISIS in Libya threaten him. Particularly badass when this is Italy that we're talking about here.
    Italy: Oh, is not-a good... What do?
    Spirit!Rome: ITALIA.
    Italy: Papa?
    Spirit!Rome: PROTECT ROMA.
    Italy: ...Si.
  • Kill Six Billion Demons: Half the comic may as well be called "Allison, do things." Since she has the most powerful thing in all of Creation lodged in her forehead, everyone she meets wants her for something. Her allies are the ones who want her to use the power herself, while everyone else wants to rip the Key of Kings from her skull for one reason or another. Even the title of the comic is a command and a name, given to Allison by the Conquering King Zoss.
    Zoss: There's work to be done. What shape will you choose, hm? Will you choose to be a king? Or will you choose to remain as you are? Peasant!
    Allison: No. I choose king.

    Web Original 
  • Hero House has Robin propose one hell of a dare to Nightwing, prompting him to seize his rightful mantle as Batman's greatest successor.
  • Red vs. Blue has a moment just before the season 8 finale, at the end of Sarge's Rousing Speech to get the others to go save Church from the Meta, after they've been demoralized by the revelation that they were unwitting training dummies for the Freelancers.
    Sarge: I'm not ordering you to go. I'm not even asking. You do what you gotta do, Private Grif.

    Western Animation 
  • Transformers: Prime: After Jack decides hanging out with the Autobots isn't worth getting up close and personal with the Decepticons, Miko tries to bring him round with one of these. He refuses: it takes Arcee admitting that she isn't ready to lose another friend so soon after Cliffjumper to make him reconsider.
  • In Batman: The Brave and the Bold, the Martian Manhunter gives the Ragtag Bunch of Misfits who are going to be the new Justice League of America one of these before they go to take on Darkseid. Immediately after, we Smash Cut to all of them chained up in Darkseid's dungeon, lucky for them they get rescued anyway.
  • DuckTales (2017): In "The Duck Knight Returns!", Launchpad sees the hero in Darkwing's new actor and suggests he become the real-life Darkwing instead of just playing the character.
    Launchpad: It's one thing to play a hero, and it's another thing to actually be a hero. Do it for Jim.
    Drake: (looks hopeful for a moment, then sulks) I don't know... this whole thing sounds like it could get-
    Launchpad: (smirking) Dangerous?
    (Drake looks up with a look of resolve, putting on Darkwing's hat)
  • Miraculous Ladybug: Plagg practically challenges Adrien to wield the Cat Miraculous and become Cat Noir.
    Adrien: But I'm stuck here! I'm not even allowed to go to school! What good is a superhero who's imprisoned in his own house?!
    Plagg: No good. That's why it's all going to change soon. If you're willing to change, that is.
  • She-Ra and the Princesses of Power
    • "System Failure" has Bow motivate the staff of Entrapta's castle to fight back against the robots that have turned hostile.
      Bow: "I'm a master archer who's out of arrows. But that never stopped me either. You each have a skill that only YOU can do, even if it doesn't come from some magical jewel."

    Real Life 


Video Example(s):


Alien³ - Let's Fight It!

Ripley and Dillon both convince the rest of the prisoners to kill the Xenomorph or die trying rather than do nothing since the Company doesn't give a damn about them and if they're going to die either way, it's better to go out fighting.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / DoNotGoGentle

Media sources: