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Deadly Dodging

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"When fighting angry blind men, best to just stay out of the way."
Mr. Han, The Karate Kid (2010)

A common trick when fighting a Giant Mook, but often seen elsewhere is to find a way to use their power against them. The simplest way to do this is using your own cunning and speed.

Deadly Dodging is a short term in-combat form of Batman Gambit. Arrange things so that the enemy attempts to hit you, but move at the last minute, causing them to hit whatever you conveniently arranged to be behind you.

Common targets include:

  • other Mooks;
  • The Man Behind the Man, who you really want to be damaged;
  • a load-bearing pillar, catching your foe in a Collapsing Lair;
  • a container or device connected to their Achilles' Heel;
  • a physical trap;
  • a generator or some type of electric outlet, perfect for, but not limited to, Mecha-Mooks;
  • a big ol' wall;
  • Innocent Bystanders if you're a villain, combining casual suffering and heroic guilt;
  • Advertisement:
  • the good old exploding barrel (make sure you dodge far enough that the explosion doesn't hit you);
  • a cliff, if they're charging;
  • another enemy who happens to be attacking at the same time;
  • the enemy itself, if it's using something like homing missiles that you can direct back to it.

While this is usually punches, it can be used on projectiles. Used frequently in kids cartoons to avoid having the heroes actually hit their opponents. In Video Games, this is a fairly common way to defeat the Puzzle Boss, often stretching credulity to the point of Boss Arena Idiocy. Even without Puzzle Bosses, this is also a favorite way of dealing with large numbers of Mooks. Some (usually older) games even allow enemies to begin infighting with each other when you do this properly.

Compare Wronski Feint, Door Judo, Dangerous Backswing. See also: Self-Damaging Attack Backfire, Hoist by His Own Petard, Karmic Death, Could Have Been Messy, Bullfight Boss, and Bulletproof Human Shield. Somewhat inverted by Exactly What I Aimed At, where this is making a foe's attack miss and do them harm, rather than you yourself deliberately missing to do another harm. If the opponent doesn't require any help hurting itself in combat, it falls in What the Fu Are You Doing?



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    Anime & Manga 
  • In the third episode of Black Lagoon, Dutch takes out two ships of the fleet of pirates sent after the crew by a disgruntled client when they incompetently attempt a pincer attack on the titular ship by letting off speed and letting the two annihilate each other with their own guns. Revy then proceeds to take out the rest of the pirate fleet singlehandedly.
  • Gin uses the Innocent Bystander variety of this in Bleach.
    Gin: Are you sure you want to dodge that?
  • Blue Gender: In The Warrior, Marlene kills two Maneaters (praying mantis-esque Blue) by evading their attacks and causing one of them to impale the other. She skewers the second one with her bayonet at the same time.
  • Darker Than Black gives a lovely demonstration of why, if you're going to try to attack a waiter in a restaurant, it'd be a good idea not to go after the one who's an undercover hitman for an international crime syndicate. Because he is undercover, Hei tries to act like he doesn't know what he's doing, but after the guy attacking him crashes into several pieces of furniture and a few people in a vain attempt to hit him, an onlooker comes to the conclusion that "It's true all Chinese people are martial arts masters."
  • Dragon Ball:
    • Goku faces a Bruce Lee Clone in a street fight. The man attempts a diving knee drop, but Goku moves out of the way and the man injures his knee when it impacts the sidewalk.
    • Goku has pulled this off on homing projectiles twice. He pulls it off without a hitch against Piccolo, but Frieza's much too smart to fall for that in Dragon Ball Z. The first two times anyway.
  • Shown in the first opening for Durarara!!. Shizuo chucks a vending machine at Izaya's head. Izaya just ducks out of the way and lets it knock the cap off of a high-pressure water main, slamming Shizuo into a wall while he makes his getaway.
  • Future Diary: When he witnesses the death of his father, Yukiteru snaps and uses his diary to deadly effect, making sure that there is someone between him and the next person to fire.
  • Girls und Panzer. In the finale, Rabbit Team attempts to escape a Jagdtiger by doing a hard right as they emerged from an alley, causing it to crash into a storm drain. Unfortunately, the Rabbits are still disabled, making it a Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Donovan, minor villain from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Battle Tendency used his agility in combination with his cloak to trick Joseph into punching a cactus. Subverted, as Joseph filled said cactus with ripple, making it literally blow up in Donovan's face.
  • Subverted in the final episode of Macross Frontier. The Battle Galaxy fires it's Wave-Motion Gun at the Macross Quarter which barely manages to dodge... causing the shot to miss and hit the Battle Frontier instead, destroying it's own Wave-Motion Gun. Subverted because the Battle Frontier and the Quarter are on the same side, making this accidental friendly fire.
  • One Piece:
    • In the Dressrosa arc, this is how the young gladiator Rebecca fights. She makes up for her relative lack of strength with a combination of Observation Haki and speed, using her opponents' strength against them to make them take each other out and/or throw them outside the ring.
    • Carrot manages to do this during her Sulong transformation, by leaping between each of Daifuku's ships as he tried to strike her with his genie's massive halberd; all he achieves is consistently missing, and cutting his own ships in half one by one because he's too pissed to stop trying to hit her.
  • In the first episode of Pacific Rim: The Black, Taylor and Hayley are backed up against a cliff in a weaponless jaeger with a Kaiju charging straight at them. The jaeger's AI tells them to hit the ground, and they dive just in time for the kaiju's momentum to send it over the cliff and into an apparently bottomless abyss.
  • Pokémon Adventures: Cynthia's Garchomp tried to hit Cyrus's Magnezone with its Hyper Beam but ended up blasting a hole in the Celestic Ruins instead, allowing Cyrus to go inside.
  • Ranma ½: The very basis of the Hiryuu Shoten Ha (Flying Dragon Ascension Wave) is based on dodging. The practitioner must goad the foe into a spiral pattern while making them discharge a hot Battle Aura, all while dodging the enemy attacks and keeping a cool aura (and a clear mind) oneself. Upon reaching the nexus, the martial artist winds up and delivers a spinning uppercut — not only does this final punch release the user's cold aura in a devastating blast, but the temperature difference between the hot and cold Battle Auras creates a localized tornado that tosses the enemy high into the air, usually knocking him out in the process (not that the fall is any picnic, either). Ranma, being the martial arts savant that he is, has modified the technique so he doesn't need an opponent to follow him in a spiral: having them release ki blasts, ignite the battlefield, or even just surround Ranma in a vaguely circular pattern is enough, and he'll do the rest. He MUST dodge the enemy's assault, however.
  • Rebuild World: In one battle, after riding his Cool Bike into the air on its force field Improvised Platform paths to get out of an artillery encirclement, Akira dodges specifically to make the enemy artillery rounds hit the other forces on the ground. The enemy eventually change their formation to prevent this.
  • Rurouni Kenshin:
    • The title character defeats his opponent, who is just as fast but larger and stronger, by using Deadly Dodging until his opponent's body breaks under the stress. Yes, Kenshin ran circles around this guy until his legs broke.
    • Possibly subverted early on in the manga; Kenshin deliberately doesn't dodge a bottle that was thrown at him, because it would have hit Kaoru.
  • The epilogue of the third season of Sailor Moon includes this in a fight between Sailor Moon and Uranus and Neptune. Usagi refuses to fight them, so she causes them to collide with each other, defeating themselves for her.
  • In the Asgard arc of the Saint Seiya anime, Shiryu uses it on Fenrir, causing an avalanche to fall on his foe.
  • In The Silent Service, this is one of Kaieda's techniques against enemy vessels. During one engagement, he makes a pursuing torpedo hit a ship by sailing under that ship's keel.
  • Touhou Sangetsusei: During the finale of Visionary Fairies in Shrine, the fairies defeat themselves through Okina's well-timed dodging.
  • Trigun: This is Vash the Stampede's modus operandi, displayed especially well in the first episode with a Giant Mook using a humongous bladed boomerang.

    Card Games 
  • Magic: The Gathering:
    • There's a card called Shield Dancer, with the special ability to, when blocking an enemy, inflict that enemy's damage to itself.
    • It's not alone; several other creatures and spells have this effect. (Ravnicans, in particular, are good at it...)
    • The Planeswalkers get in on the action too, with spells like Mirror Strike.
    • "Reroute" from Ravnica block, in flavor text, image, and ability.
  • The Yu-Gi-Oh! card "Dimension Wall", where the art is basically Warrior Dai Grepher thrusting his sword at D.D. Warrior Lady, his arms and weapon have disappeared into a portal and are coming up fast behind him. Deadly dodging via magic.

    Comic Books 
  • Asterix:
    • In "Asterix in Spain", Asterix succeeds in defeating a wild aurochs with this method — after some spectacular Spanish bullfighting, of course.
    • In "Asterix and the Magic Carpet", a stalemated Beam-O-War between two fakirs on magic carpets is resolved when the heroic Watziznehm makes his carpet fly straight upwards, causing the sudden lack of resistance to send his villainous opponent Owzat hurtling into the side of a minaret.
  • In Avatar: The Last Airbender – The Rift, Aang beats a group of Earthbenders by getting them to surround him and then jumping high above them, causing all four to crash into each other. He gives them a little push with airbending to make sure it happens.
  • Blacksad, as pictured here, does it when drug dealers are being uncooperative. Since he is a cat he can swivel his ears to spot better the threats by sound.
  • DC Comics:
    • All-Star Comics: In the Justice Society of America story "Two New Members Win Their Spurs" Dr. Mid-Nite ducks out of the way of Professor Elba's two associates while tossing one of his black-out bombs and they knock each other out while trying to attack him.
    • Batman:
      • During a fight near the demolished Gotham bridge in Batman: No Man's Land Batman ducks a thrown rock which ends up hitting the guy behind him. It sends him off the bridge and into the water, landing straight on one of the mines the government has placed to keep Gotham sealed off. Hopefully that wasn't intentional on Batsy's part...
      • When Batman fights a mind-controlled Superman in Batman: Hush, he uses this tactic to get Superman to punch an electrical panel, though this only delays Superman temporarily.
    • One of the favorite tricks of The Flash. Makes sense, with Super Speed.
    • During the climax of The Great Darkness Saga, Chameleon Boy sees a Daxamite child swooping towards him (Daxamites being a race of Kryptonians). Quickly Chameleon Boy grabs the kid's belt and exploits his momentum to spin him around and make him crash through a wall.
    • When fighting the Council of Spiders, Red Robin is able to get some of them to deal with each other by dodging since only "Goliath" and "Sac" seem to have any idea how to fight alongside each other while the rest have no clue how to fight alongside allies as they're used to working alone.
    • Superman:
      • Supergirl, in Strangers at the Heart's Core, lets her enemy Shyla Kor-Onn hit her, so the backlash throws Shyla back into the path of the Phantom Zone Projector's ray, and she's sent her back in the Phantom Zone.
        Supergirl: Luck had nothing to do with it, Shyla... I knew you couldn't control your flying ability yet, so I let you get in that last punch... Then I used Newton's Law of Motion— for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction— It forced you back into the Projector's ray!
      • Superman can be found employing this on the frequent off chance he finds himself depowered. Takes for example this instance from Who Took the Super out of Superman? Lex Luthor shoots his ray gun at Superman, but Superman just ducks out of the way and lets the energy blast pass over him and hit the Parasite.
      • The Strange Revenge of Lena Luthor: When Blackrock is surrounded by security guards and shot, he becomes intangible to let a gunshot pass right through him. Unfortunately, another guard was behind Blackrock and in the bullet's path. Fortunately, Supergirl flew in front of the bullet.
    • In Day of the Dollmaker, Supergirl defeats Baroness Blitzkrieg's charging tactics by stepping aside and tripping her into a row of trees.
  • In the Lone Wolf graphic novel The Skull of Agarash, Lone Wolf sidesteps two Lakuri Isles pirates attacking from both sides, and they bump heads together. Then, they are taken out of the fight by the same arrow (from the Rain of Arrows released by the other pirates) going through both their skulls.
    Mazrah: ... Nothing between the ears to stop it, you see...
  • Marvel Universe:
    • Used by Deadpool to impale the Hulk on a broken pole.
    • A talented acrobat, Hawkeye uses his agility against his enemies, especially when he's outnumbered. In a training session with the Thunderbolts, Hawkeye uses this technique against Jolt and Moonstone to demonstrate the importance of teamwork.
    • The Incredible Hulk himself has pulled this trick a couple of times, including ducking the Constrictor's cybernetic whips and causing them to hit an electric streetlight behind him and electrocuted the snakelike killer, or rolling out of the way of an electrically-charged Absorbing Man and letting him hit a large pool of water.
    • Spider-Man:
      • In both The Night Gwen Stacy Died and the Spider-Man film, Green Goblin remotely launches his hovercraft at Spider-Man, who gets out of its way in time for it to hit Green Goblin himself.
      • This is also his common technique for taking down stronger opponents such as Scorpion or the Rhino.
      • During a fight with the serial killer known as the Sin-Eater, Spider-Man dodged a blast from the villain's shotgun. Unfortunately, their fight was in a crowded area and the shot hit a civilian. Spider-Man being rattled by this greatly affected his performance in the battle and the following issue reveals the civilian died.
  • In The Shadow Hero, Hank doesn't seem to do this intentionally, but his opponents manage to repeatedly shoot their own allies trying to hit him.
  • In Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics), this is how Sonic wins the very first fight we see him in, tricking Dr. Robotnik into hitting Caterkiller.
  • In one Transformers comic, a rhino-shaped decepticon (Stranglehold) charged against an autobot, who very politely introduced him to the wall.

    Fairy Tales 
  • Older Than Radio: In some versions of the fairy tale "The Brave Little Tailor", the title character captures a unicorn by provoking it to charge at him and into the tree he is standing in front of.

    Fan Works 
  • Amazing Fantasy has a quick and terribly brutal form of this. One of the Rocket Racers liked to use his Cool Board to slam his fist into people's faces at 60 miles an hour. After taking a number of these punches, Peter decides to lean on a wall and goads the Villain into attacking him. Predictably, Peter jumps out of the way just as they're about to collide, mangling Rocker Racer's fingers after his fist goes through the wall.
  • In Despair's Last Resort, the third murder happens when Shizuka stumbles upon Shigeru and Naomi plotting a double murder, at which point they decide to kill her to protect their secret. Naomi grabs Shizuka, and Shigeru tries to hit Shizuka with the shovel, but Shizuka ducks, causing him to kill Naomi instead. Monokuma uses this to suggest that Shizuka killed both victims, not just Shigeru.
    Monokuma: By all technicalities, Shigeru murdered Naomi. But Naomi only died because Shizuka tried to duck. She knew where the shovel would hit if she did that, so you could also say she killed both of them!
  • In Supergirl story Hellsister Trilogy, when Satan Girl is about to hurl Supergirl into an antimatter sun, Kara uses her momentum against her to throw her into the star instead.
  • Mastermind: Strategist for Hire: Izuku employs this against Rappa, dodging his attacks at the last second so he hits his allies.
  • Pokémon Reset Bloodlines features a few instances:
    • In the Clemont Gaiden, while he's trapped inside Belmondo's van, Clemont tricks the sentinel robot into attacking him so it breaks open the van's doors, allowing him to get out.
    • During the Indigo League in the main story, Gary's Porygon uses Lock-On and then fires a Thunderbolt at Paul's Cloyster. The lightning chases Cloyster all over the field, forcing them to pull this trope to win the bout (and just barely, at that).
  • This is how Eirinnote  kills Tewi in the Touhou Project doujin The Silence of the Rabbits during her battle with Reisen, setting up one of her attacks in such a way that if Reisen dodges it, it'll hit Tewi instead.
  • This Bites!: When Cross insults Bellamy to get him to spring at him full-speed, he hits the floor so that Bellamy ends up crashing into Mr. 13 who's chasing him from behind.
  • With This Ring: Paul uses his power ring to dodge a shot from one of Mongul's ships, which then goes on to hit another ship, and pleased by that result, Paul tells the ring to try to make it happen again.
    Ring: That utility was already included in calculations.
    Paul: Oh. Well done.

    Films — Animation 
  • Another Disney hero using this is Aladdin. His introduction song is all about how he's always one jump ahead of his enemy.
  • In the 2009 film version of Astro Boy, Astro uses this to get the Peacekeeper to collapse a skyscraper on itself.
  • Used several times in the starting sequence to Bolt, once by Bolt getting a homing missile to hit a helicopter, and once by Penny getting one of the motorbiking Faceless Goons to electrify another.
  • At the end of Chicken Run, Ginger is pursued by Mrs. Tweedy climbing up a string of Christmas lights. As Tweedy reaches her, she attacks Ginger with a meat cleaver. After a moment, Ginger reveals that not only is she alright, but that Tweedy cut the rope, and falls away.
  • In Epic (2013) Ronin dodges a shot from Dagda and kills him in return, but Dagda's shot hits the queen as a result.
  • The Incredibles has Dash cause about half the fatalities in the movie by getting mooks to blow themselves up on scenery during a chase sequence.
  • In Kung Fu Panda, Po dodges a bite from Tai Lung, getting him to bite his own tail instead.
  • Osmosis Jones: Osmosis Jones does this by doing some sort of micro-division as Thrax delivers his coup-de-grace, forcing Thrax to become jammed in a false eyelash.
  • In the test footage of the cancelled Popeye film, Eugene the Jeep performs an impressive series of deadly dodgings using his teleportation power against a mook who's armed with a baseball bat, making said mook hit several of his comrades — and eventually himself — in rapid succession with the bat instead.
  • In The Princess and the Frog, Tiana and Naveen use this against a trio of dim-witted frog hunters.
  • Disney's Robin Hood (1973): Robin uses this tactic against the mook archers, causing them to hit each other. Of course, they don't actually hit each other with arrows. They just get pinned to walls through the collars or somesuch.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Batman:
    • In Batman: The Movie, during the big free-for-all fight at the end, Batman ducks under a punch from the Joker, that hits the Riddler who was behind and sends him tumbling in the sea.
    • In The Dark Knight Rises, Batman manages to trick one of the missiles launched by one of the stolen Tumblers into blowing up one of the others after leading it on a long chase in the Bat.
  • DC Extended Universe: In Zack Snyder's Justice League, Superman does a Nonchalant Dodge to the Flash who is running at super speed! This causes Barry to crash into Aquaman who is charging up behind Superman at the time. It puts them both out of the count for the rest of the battle, and Aquaman gives Barry a Death Glare afterwards.
  • The Drunken Knight's introduction in Come Drink With Me have him being cornered by six thugs, who decide to gang up on this drunkard all at once. Unfortunately for the thugs, they have severely underestimated the Knight, who nimbly dodges all their strikes - and make them stab each other at the same time.
  • Duan versus the Sword Spirits Duo in The Deadly Breaking Sword. A side-step from Duan leaves the Red Spirit Left Stuck After Attack, and another dodge Duan causes the Blue Spirit to skewer his partner. The Blue Spirit is then easily taken down afterwards.
  • In Dragonball Evolution, when Goku is forbidden to fight, he defeats some bullies by tricking them into hitting each other and hard surfaces.
  • During the climactic confrontation in Galaxy Quest, the heroes' spaceship drags magnetic mines and, at the last possible moment, dodges Sarris' onrushing flagship which in turn crashes right into the heap of mines and explodes.
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows has a subtle variant: When McGonagall attacks Snape for his (feigned) Death Eater allegiance, he deflects her spells slightly, so they happen to strike the two genuine Death Eaters standing behind him.
  • Hellboy II: The Golden Army: Hellboy dodges Wink's fist and it hits what appears to be a giant meatgrinder. Wink doesn't live much longer after that, obviously.
  • Pulled off in The Hunt for Red October. By a submarine. Here's a rundown: When the Konovalov fires a torpedo at the Red October, the USS Dallas passes between the torpedo and the October, causing the torpedo to switch targets, the Dallas then blows its ballast and rises to the surface. The torpedo reacquires the October, but Commander Mancuso (in temporary command of the October) uses that time to get close to the Konovalov and passes over her, resulting in the torpedo returning right back at the sub that fired it. The only reason it works, though, is that Captain Tupolev previously removed all safeguards from the torpedo to prevent Captain Ramius from making use of them by getting the October to within the "safety range". The last words Tupolev hears are his Number Two telling him "You arrogant ass... you've killed us.".
  • I, Robot: The robot Sonny invokes this as an Informed Ability to Spooner, who has a gun pointed at Sonny's head, during an apparent Face–Heel Turn where he holds Susan Calvin at gunpoint; by the time Spooner fired, he could move Susan's head there instead. He quickly conveys to Spooner that taking Susan hostage is only a ploy.
  • Also appears in the James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies. When being "interrogated", he shifts sideways from a punch and Mook #1 ends up punching Mook #2 instead, giving Bond the opening he needs to beat up the numerous baddies.
  • Johnny English Reborn: Part of Johnny's effortless curbstomp of a whole group of Chinese assailants. Each time one of them grapple him, he maneuvers the thug so that he's the one hit by the staff-wielding fighter.
  • Mr. Miyagi pulls this trick in the opening "fight" of The Karate Kid Part II, tricking his opponent into punching car windows and injuring himself.
  • The Karate Kid (2010) features quite a bit of it in the initial fight between Mr. Han and the six boys who'd beaten up Dre. Han barely shows any actual offense at all, mostly maneuvering the boys into hitting each other. When Dre remarks on this in the next scene, Mr. Han replies, "When fighting against angry blind men, best to just stay out of the way."
  • Kong: Skull Island: During the helicopter battle, Kong at one point leaps out of the way as two helicopters try to attack him from in front and behind. This causes them to rake each others' cockpits with machinegun fire, then crash into each other.
  • In Kung Fu Hustle, the Landlord defeats the pair of kung fu villains who double as Musical Assassins by throwing his arms over their necks in the way friends often do. Then he moves his hips, causing their punches to strike the other one. He is even able to seemingly dodge strikes that land by causing them to slide off his body and strike the other.
  • Jet Li's character invokes this by accident in the final battle of Lethal Weapon 4 when he reflexively dodges a bullet which hits and kills his brother.
  • Early in Machete, the title character is lured into a streetfight. He wins it by dodging several attacks, then stepping aside just at the right time for his opponent to shatter his arm on a concrete post.
  • Early in Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior, Max slams on the brakes and tricks two enemies on either side of his car into shooting each other. Also see Dodge by Braking.
  • Marlowe: Winslow Wong is defeated when he attempts a flying kick on Phillip Marlowe while they are on a balcony. Marlowe dodges, causing Wong to fly over the edge to his death.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe: In Captain America: Civil War, as Captain America and Bucky are escaping the airport, Iron Man and War Machine start to pursue, while the Falcon intercepts them. War Machine asks Vision to disable the Falcon's glider, but the Falcon dodges, causing the blast to hit War Machine instead, crippling his arc reactor, causing him to fall to earth and resulting in him being paralyzed.
  • As The One, Neo used his speed, martial arts mastery and agility to easily dodge attacks by sinister mooks of the Merovingian in The Matrix Reloaded's chateau fight scene, often causing them to maim and kill each other.
  • In Princess Warrior (1989), Ovule sidesteps one of Currette's kicks and it hits a pillar. Currette angrily staggers away clutching her shin.
  • Rage Of Honor, an action movie starring Sho Kosugi, have a scene where Kosugi gets trapped in a warehouse full of mooks. Avoiding gunfire, Kosugi then performs a midair summersault between two thugs, and both thugs ends up shooting each other's faces while aiming for Kosugi.
  • In Robin Hood: Men in Tights, Robin and Achoo (Bless you!) dodge four soldiers while on a hanging platform, leaving them suspended off the ground atop their swords.
  • In The Rock, John Mason is in a fist fight with one of the bad guys, and is losing badly until he ducks a punch. The bad guy then solidly hits a metal pipe, and while he is in pain, the protagonist takes advantage of the distraction to resoundingly trounce his opponent.
  • The battle at the docks in Royal Warriors has Peter tricking a sledgehammer-swinging mook into smashing another mook's guts by ducking.
  • River Tam from Serenity, in both the Maidenhead fight and Mr. Universe's complex, uses this, although she isn't above shoving people into the way as well.
  • Done in The Shallows, as this is how Nancy ultimately kills the shark, by making it lunge at her and then making it impale itself with a metal rebar protruding from the bottom of the seabed.
  • Special Female Force: The fight between Ho and Tung Zi ends with Tung Zi grabbing a long, metal re-bar in an attempt to skewer Ho, but she dodges it in time, resulting in Tung Zi impaling a fuse box instead. A High-Voltage Death quickly follows.
  • In the climax of Spider-Man, when Spider-Man manages to overpower the Goblin, the latter reveals himself as Norman Osborn to halt the fight. He begs for forgiveness, but at the same time programs his glider to impale his foe from behind. Sensing the danger, Spider-Man instinctively dodges, and the glider impales Norman, killing him.
  • Star Wars: In Rogue One, Blind Weaponmaster Chirrut uses his quick reflexes to dodge blaster shots fired by several Stormtroopers, causing them to accidentally kill a few of their own.
  • In Tremors, Kevin Bacon outwits a giant worm by luring it off of out of a cliff.
  • Tucker & Dale vs. Evil: Tucker is loading logs into a wood chipper when one of the co-eds comes up behind him with intent to stab him. Tucker, completely oblivious to this, ducks out of the way to get more wood as the kid charges past and goes straight into the wood chipper.
  • During the climax of Ultraman Cosmos 2: The Blue Planet with Ultraman, the humans, and the Alien Gyasshis Jin and Shau battling the Scorpiss horde, Jin managed to trick one of the Scorpiss into blowing up two of its comrades by dodging its fireball attacks.
  • The protagonist of Ultraviolet (2006) incorporates this into her Gun Kata in the rooftop shootout in order to take out a group of gangster-looking Mooks.
  • Who Framed Roger Rabbit:
    • Eddie Valiant dodges Judge Doom's punch, leading to Doom getting glued to a slowly moving steamroller.
    • And then later subverted, as Doom dodges a punch from a boxing-glove mallet wielded by Valiant... only to have that glove punch open the spigot for the deadly Dip to kill its creator.
  • Willow, beginning of the escape from the inn. "Gentlemen? Meet Llug."
  • X-Men Film Series:
    • Used by Kitty Pryde against Juggernaut in X-Men: The Last Stand, as she tricks him into crashing into a wall behind her; due to their powers being temporarily nullified by Leech, he's promptly knocked out.
    • And again in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, with Wade Wilson dodging and slicing bullets to take out foes on either side of him with their own bullets.

  • Rarely comes into play in Lone Wolf, as most fight sequences are straightforward, but there are still a few examples:
    • In book 3, inside the Caverns of Kalte, pursued by a Kalkoth, Lone Wolf can lure it over a frozen lake by dodging, the thin layer of ice giving way under its weight, and it's eaten by a giant predator in the water.
    • In book 6, The Kingdoms of Terror, within the ruins of Castle Taunor, if Lone Wolf flees from the enraged monster waiting in ambush, you can lure it into jumping down a precipice by dodging at the last moment.
    • In book 7, Castle Death, pushing the Rahkos into a magical trap is the only way to finish off for real the horrific undead flying hand.
    • In book 10, The Dungeons of Torgar, you can end up interrogated by Eruan soldiers while a crossbow is aimed at your back. If Lone Wolf gives an unsatisfactory answer... he can spring away fast enough for the bolt to miss him, hitting instead the captain he was facing. Maybe they should revise their interrogation methods....
    • In book 19, Wolf's Bane, Lone Wolf can fight two mooks who carry powerful flamethrowers. Lone Wolf grapples with one, then the other fires at him. Lone Wolf can jump away in time, causing the first mook to get fried.
  • In the fourth Sorcery! book, The Crown of Kings, you can get confronted by three hostile Red-Eyes (humanoids with deadly Eye Beams). They're usually very dangerous, but the option to use the TEL spell (to read their minds) leads to a Curb-Stomp Battle. By allowing the protagonist to anticipate when they unleash the fiery gaze attack, he can maneuver one into missing him and instead killing his two companions. The last one is then an easy pick as he's paralyzed by the horror of what he'd done.

  • Ciaphas Cain uses this in Cain's Last Stand when fighting three combat servitors. The one hit by the other's plasma bolt isn't taken down by it, but misidentifies its fellow as another attacker as a result of the hit.
  • In one of the Conan the Barbarian books, the title character confronts the Big Bad, who throws a spear at him. Conan ducks, and the spear kills his Love Interest. While Conan rushes to her, the Big Bad gets away. Later, the Big Bad blames her death on Conan, claiming that, had Conan not dodged the spear, she would've lived.
  • In the Discworld book Maskerade, Granny Weatherwax first encounters the Ghost when he uses this tactic to fight some muggers threatening her and Mrs. Plinge:
    ... when six are against one in a melee in the shadows, and especially if those six aren't used to a target that is harder to hit than a wasp, and even more so if they got all their ideas of knife fighting from other amateurs, then there's six chances in seven that they'll stab a crony and about one chance in twelve that they'll knick their own earlobe.
  • In the Doctor Who Past Doctor Adventures novel The Eleventh Tiger, the Doctor does this to the Gung Fu School bully who challenges him to a duel. The Doctor first flips him onto his back using his attack as a lever, then when the bully decides to kick at the Doctor's head (a kick that he boasts shatters jars, and jars are stronger then heads) the Doctor momentarily blinds him with a reflection of light and then moves his head an inch to the left, allowing the bully's foot to crack into the wooden pole behind the Doctor's head, splintering the pole and his foot. The Doctor then tells the other students to tend to the bully's wounds. Topping this off is the fact this is the First Doctor, who looks like he's 60.
  • In Helm, Leland de Laal discovers this by accident during his Training from Hell and begins using it intentionally.
  • In The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, depressed robot Marvin is left to defend himself with no weapons against a giant killer robot. He explains this situation to the killer robot, with emphasis on the callous and unthinking humans who abandoned a little helpless robot, and this makes it so angry that it destroys a wall, and then the floor. Unfortunately, it's standing on a bridge several hundred feet above ground level.
    Marvin: What a depressingly stupid machine.
  • In the first book of The Kingdom Keepers series, Finn managed to defeat a skeletal T-Rex by making it hit the tracks of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad which causes the weak frame to splinter apart.
  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians: In The Titan's Curse, Percy takes the sky from Artemis, and Artemis pushes Atlas into Percy, who moves, and allows the sky to fall on Atlas.
  • Rod Allbright Alien Adventures: Downplayed when Rod defends himself against a sixth-grade bully by ducking away from a punch, causing the bully to Punch a Wall and break his hand. Unfortunately, his parents decide Screw the Rules, I Have Money! and threaten a punitive lawsuit.
  • Star Wars Legends:
    • This is a space tactic known as the Ackbar Slash. It was developed in the Battle of Endor at the end of Return of the Jedi for use by large capital ships in close proximity to each other, especially when facing superior numbers; they fly right between their opponents at close range, meaning that all their own shots will hit, and any misses by their enemies will hit each other. It has been implied that the only reason it works is because it's generally suicidal and no-one is that crazy. And also because the Mon Calamari warships that constitute the bulk of Admiral Ackbar's fleet have stronger Deflector Shields and better maneuverability than most other ships of their size, giving them a better chance of avoiding enemy fire and of surviving the shots that do hit them.
    • Also notable is a trick used by fighters against capital vessels, involving having a bunch of missiles chase an allied fighter, then making a high-performance turn right next to the hostile ship. The missiles try to match the turn, but have to take wider turns due to their faster speed — and crash straight into the target.
    • There's also the A-Wing Slash, wherein a group of X-Wings head for an enemy ship, only to peel away at the last minute, drawing the TIE fighter defence cover with them — and reveal the A-Wings that were hiding in the glow from their engines. The Deadly Dodge part comes when an Imperial commander duplicates it with Preybird starfighters in place of X-Wings and proton torpedoes in place of the A-Wings.
  • Villains by Necessity: Sam dodges a charging unicorn while there's a tree right behind him. The unicorn ends up with its horn stuck once Kaylan causes the tree's bark to grow closed around it. Robin then protests the villains' plan of taking advantage of the unicorn's helplessness to behead it. They don't as Valerie notes that unicorns are sacred to Good folk and they would rain down vengeance if it was killed.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In one episode of The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr., the protagonist is about to be shot by four bandits who form a perfect cross around him. He decides to duck at the last moment and the bandits kill each other simultaneously.
  • Bargearse (a Gag Dub of Australian cop show Bluey (1976)). Bargearse aggravates a man by calling him a "polepuncher". When the man goes to hit him, Bargearse ducks out of the way and the man hits the telephone pole behind him instead. "Ha-ha! Polepuncher!"
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • In "Robot You Jane", Buffy defeats Moloch the Corruptor by tricking him into punching an electrical junction box, frying him.
    • In "Homecoming", Buffy maneuvers the two German assassins into shooting each other.
  • The Defenders: There is a wall covered in a magical incantation that only an Iron Fist can break through. Elektra tries to convince Danny Rand to break it down, but when he refuses she goads him into using the Fist on her, maneuvers until she's standing in front of the wall and then uses this trope to get him to knock it down.
  • Doctor Who:
    • In "Eve of the Daleks", Nick is caught in a corridor by a couple of Daleks and escapes by ducking so they exterminate each other. Unfortunately they're in a "Groundhog Day" Loop, so the Daleks learn from their mistake and only send one Dalek after him the next time.
      Nick: It was a lot of strategic analysis, weapons assessment and battle-ready thinking.
      The Doctor: Did you duck?
      Nick: [shamefaced] Yeah.
      The Doctor: Nice!
    • "The Age of Steel": Mickey defeats a Cyberman by getting it to punch him, then quickly ducking so it hits the transmitter controls behind him.
    • Probably the single most epic version of this comes from "The Day of the Doctor", when all thirteen of the Doctor's incarnations teleport Gallifrey from the Time War and into a Pocket Dimension, causing the Dalek fleet bombarding the planet to wipe themselves out instead.
    • "The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos": Graham and Ryan get cornered by two groups of sniper bots, so they drop to the floor and let them shoot each other.
  • Double Subversion in an episode of Farscape. Crichton tries to trick a creature into jumping through a hole blown in the hull that's sealed with an improvised hatch and an electromagnetic field. However, after he dodges it, it misses the hatch and clings to the wall instead. It takes a few more tries and several seconds of frantically dodging to work.
  • Done unintentionally in Friends, where Ross accidentally punches a lamppost after being goaded by Joey to hit him. Joey apologizes and states that he merely dodged reflexively, even taking a swing at Ross to demonstrate (who doesn't dodge). At the end of the episode Joey, again trying to demonstrate how people dodge reflexively, throws a punch at Chandler, who dodges... meaning Joey hits Ross again.
  • In the Grimm episode "Leave It to the Beavers", Nick gets a reaper to behead another like this.
  • The Man from U.N.C.L.E.:
    • In the second season episode "The Virtue Affair", Napoleon Solo escapes from a holding cell and is running through the corridors of the Big Bad's lair. Confronted by two Mooks approaching from opposite sides of the corridor, Solo dodges just in time for the mooks to gun each other down.
    • Played with in the third season episode "The Five Daughters Affair, Part II". Solo and Kuryakin, creeping down a corridor of a THRUSH complex, are menaced by one THRUSH mook ahead of them and two behind them. The mook in front of them sprints towards them, then leaps at Solo as if to tackle him. Solo quickly hits the floor, and the leaping mook takes out the two mooks following the heroes.
  • The Midsomer Murders episode "Written in Blood" has this happen. Tip for murderers: don't rush madly towards people standing in front of upstairs windows.
  • Since Billy was not a trained martial artist like the rest of the Rangers, this was his signature move in early episodes of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers — so much so that it was his unmorphed fighting shot in the season 1 opening credits. Later he Took a Level in Badass, fighting as well as the others (and wearing sleeveless shirts to show off his toned arms), and the credits were changed accordingly.
  • In an episode of Murder Most Horrid, the fiancée of a murder victim announces that she no longer wishes to live and asks his killers to all shoot her in the head at the end of a song. She takes a bow.
  • The Series X finale of Red Dwarf, "The Beginning", has this trope invoked in the climactic showdown. Rimmer, piloting the Blue Midget, possesses a raygun that makes walls temporarily intangible, while Simulant ships—who have him vastly outgunned—are on his 12, 3, 6, and 9, completely surrounding him . Rimmer, perhaps reading his enemies, perhaps just being Rimmer, decides to surrender. Each ship immediately fires heat-seeking torpedoes at the Midget. Naturally, deadly dodging occurs, as Rimmer shoots the front, back and sides of the Blue Midget's bulkhead with the aforementioned "wibbly gun", causing the torpedoes to pass through the Blue Midget and start homing on the Simulant ships on the opposing sides. They quickly begin to parrot Rimmer's surrender speech back at him before blowing up.
  • The Australian series Rush had a scene where Sergeant McKeller is cornered by two criminals, one of whom tries to shoot him, only for McKeller to dodge, causing him to hit his own partner, who made no attempt to get out of the line of fire. This scene was parodied in the Gag Dub sketch The Olden Days in The Late Show, when Sergeant Olden tells them this is exactly what he's about to do, only for them to dismiss it because "That only happens in old ABC drama programs!"
  • In The Sarah Jane Adventures episode "The Vault of Secrets", Clyde gets two robots to fire at him, and jumps out at the last second, causing them to shoot each other.
  • Superman:
    • The first season of The Adventures of Superman depicted Superman doling out some super-haymakers against Metropolis's resident hoodlums. But as the series grew Lighter and Softer over time, the Man of Steel shifted his strategy to stepping out of the way (or even just standing still) while the crooks dutifully bumped into the door, or each other's heads.
    • In Smallville, this is how young Clark frequently winds up accidentally disposing of villains, allowing the writers to have the threat dealt with without Clark ever breaking Thou Shalt Not Kill. Take him on, and you will find yourself stuck like a cocktail weenie on a pointy object that should rightfully only bruise you.
    • In one episode of Supergirl, Brainy defeats several members of the Children of Liberty by doing just this.
      Brainy: ... I'll be required to beat you up. With physics.
  • In the Supernatural episode "All Hell Breaks Loose, Part One", Sam ducks out of the way as Jake punches, resulting in Jake's fist going through a wooden trough and getting stuck.
  • Ultra Galaxy Mega Monster Battle: During an episode where Gomora fights against Telesdon, Red King and Neronga (summoned by Bullton), Gomora manage to trick Telesdon to unleash its fireballs at his direction, and then dodge aside causing the fireballs to hit Neronga and Bullton instead.

  • In the old MAD parody "Superduperman", Superduperman beats Captain Marbles by dodging to get him to punch himself in the face.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • TNA wrestler Samoa Joe's favorite counter against high-flying wrestlers is to simply step aside and allow them to crash into the mat (or the concrete floor, as the case may be). A call back to Dynamite Kid.
  • This was how "Stone Cold" Steve Austin lost his first WWF Championship at King of the Ring 1998; he was involved in a First Blood match against Kane with the title on the line, when both Mankind and The Undertaker (who earlier that night had made wrestling history in their legendary Hell in a Cell match) interfered. Austin turned the tables on Mankind, but as both he and Undertaker lined up simultaneous steel chair shots on the staggering Mankind's head from both sides, Mankind ducked, causing 'Taker to smash Austin across the head instead, busting him open and causing him to lose the match.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Rules for the "Sucker Attack" go back as far as third edition Champions.
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition features a few different ways to force attacking enemies to hit their own allies by mistake or blunder into a disadvantageous or even dangerous positions:
      • The Deceptive Dodge feat allows tricking an opponent that attacks in melee and miss you into hitting another close-by target.
      • The Elusive Target tactical feat includes two such maneuvers. "Diverting Defense" works against two foes flanking you; the first to attack miss automatically and may strike its ally instead. "Cause Overreach" is risky since you need to provoke an attack of opportunity, but then if the attacker misses you can safely trip it.
      • Combat Panache is another tactical feat with a maneuver allowing Deadly Dodging: "Fortuitous Tumble" plays on the confidence of an opponent who already managed a successful attack through bluffing, luring it into striking an ally with its next blow.
      • Gnome Tunnel Acrobatics from Dungeonscape is yet another tactical feat with a maneuver of this type, "Combat Puppeteer". It allows confusing opponents by moving swiftly between them, leading the attack of opportunity of one of them to hit their ally.
      • From the Tome of Battle – Book of Nine Swords, the Setting Sun martial discipline in particular is dedicated to misdirection and turning the strength of the enemy against itself. Beyond the various throws allowing to put an opponent just at the right spot for it to get hurt by your allies or the terrain, there are maneuvers such as "Counter Charge" (sends a charging foe sprawling), "Scorpion Parry" (deflects an attack so that it strikes someone else), "Ghostly Defense" (tricks an opponent into hitting an ally) and "Fool's Strike" (can lead an attacker to strike itself). Other disciplines are more straightforward, but the Iron Heart one includes "Manticore Parry", which can deflect a weapon strike against another opponent.
      • Spellcasters can of course play this game too. For example, the spells baleful transposition or translocation trick can switch the position of two creatures; if timed properly with the "ready action" option, one can replace an ally (or oneself) with an opponent just as another enemy is about to strike. (In addition, translocation trick gives the transposed enemy the appearance of the caster, meaning the exchange may take a while to be noticed.)
    • Also available in Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition for Rogues, including a paragon path as well as various attacks. Monks have at least two reactions like this as well, and the flavor text for a few powers point at this, even though the game mechanics are that of a regular attack. So do a few other classes, mostly as feat- or utility-based powers.
  • In Exalted, Lunars and Dragon-Blooded get Charms that allow them to do this to enemies.
  • In Mutants & Masterminds, the "redirect" feat allows you to pull this off, as does the "trick" application of the Bluff skill.
  • Star Wars: Saga Edition has a starship maneuver called the "Ackbar slash" which allows you to redirect an enemy attack towards another enemy ship.

    Video Games 
  • The mooks in Battletoads: Battlemanics automatically counterattack when they take damage, so if you get one to hit another they'll fight to the death.
  • This trope describes one of the most popular techniques for scoring in the coin-op game Berzerk, where the player would stand between two robots until they both fired, then would step out as the shots passed and then step back to lure the robots back into the line of fire.
  • Boktai:
    • The Golems roll around to attack you. If you hide behind a wall or other obstruction (or you Quick Guard in Lunar Knights), the Golem will be stunned for a period of time (by crashing into it), allowing you to get a few hits in.
    • The Goat Chimera roars when it's about to charge you; unlike the previous examples, you have to use the lamppost to disable it, as it skids to a halt if you dodge and it runs you over if you try to block. Thankfully it can still be killed the old-fashioned way.
  • A fun tactic in multiplayer games of Bomberman and derivatives of it. Keep running around until the opponent hits himself with his own bomb. More effective in Baloono, with smaller arenas and more power-ups....
  • A similar sequence occurs in Clive Barker's Undying. When fighting Aaron, he will stand in the middle of the room when sufficiently injured and keeps attacking with his chain hook. The trick is to let him attack then sidestep when you are in front of the door. If done right, the hook gets stuck in the door and Aaron can be "killed" by decapitating him with the scythe.
  • Commander Keen: You can dispatch some enemies that attack by jumping at Keen (notably the Mimrocks in Secret of the Oracle, who are otherwise not easy to hit with the neural stunner) by luring them close to the edge of a pit, and jumping yourself out of the way when they strike. They are not hurt by whatever hazard can be found in the pits (spikes, lava, freezing water, boiling tar...) but they can't jump high enough to get out, effectively neutralizing the threat.
  • It's possible to do this to Seath in Dark Souls. You can manuever yourself so that he accidentally destroys the primordial crystal, which is what causes him to remain effectively immortal. Doing this causes him to fly into a rage where he's open to hits for a while.
  • There's a secret mission in Devil May Cry where Dante is fighting against a pair of rock-spitting spider demons, and has to goad one of them into destroying the other using this trope.
  • This is the basic mechanic of the flash game Dodge: your spaceship is unarmed, and you have to maneuver so that the enemies destroy themselves and/or each other with their missiles.
  • Luring enemies into firing at each other and then fighting is an essential combat tactic in Doom, especially when up against maps with tons of enemies and not enough ammo to kill them all yourself.
  • Played straight in Super Double Dragon. You can get your enemies to throw knives and boomerangs at each other, although it might take you a while to perfect this fine craft.
  • Simultaneously played straight and inverted in Dwarf Fortress. When fighting, both your dwarves and whoever they're fighting can sidestep to an adjacent free tile in order to dodge an attack. Free tiles include open spaces, so battles on top of bridges often result in one or more combatants dodging off the bridge and falling into the water or magma below. This can be exploited in defense of your fortress. Make a high, narrow bridge the only path into your fortress, and rig the bridge with traps which will poke its victims with blunt sticks. Invaders will dodge to avoid getting poked, and thus fall to their deaths.
  • Twinblade in Fable I can't be damaged and will always strike you. Every few attacks, he will loose a brutal assault that, if dodged, gets his swords stuck in the ground. This leaves his back vulnerable for a while.
  • Fist of the North Star: Ken's Rage: During the second phase of Kenshiro's boss fight with Shin in Chapter 2 of Legend Mode, Shin will use an unblockable charge attack that will cause severe damage if it connects. If you position Ken in front of a pillar and then dodge at the last second, Shin's hand will get stuck for a few seconds, allowing you to get a few free hits in.
  • Gatling Gears: In a few stages, you encounter drilling machines that attempt to charge the player. You can take advantage of them by standing in front of a Mook and dodging as the drill charges, causing them to run into and instantly destroy the other Mook.
  • At one point in Grand Theft Auto V, Amanda's yoga instructor Fabien makes a sexual pass at her, causing her enraged husband Michael to lunge at him. Fabien dodges, sending Michael careening into his own pool.
  • The Haunted Mansion has a segment where Zeke is shrunken down onto a billiards table and has to get the ghostly player to hit all the balls into the pockets. In the kitchen, you have to get the plates aimed at you to break every bottle of alcohol.
  • In I Wanna Be the Guy, during his third attack pattern, The Guy is immune to your puny bullets, and you have to dodge his shots so that they bounce off the walls into him. It's harder than it sounds, because the bullets don't follow usual angles: they always bounce so that they're flying directly at you.
  • Used brilliantly in Jade Empire by Sagacious Zu against Death's Hand. Turns out to be a Heroic Sacrifice, sadly.
  • This is a fairly common tactic in Boss Battles and fights with Giant Mooks in Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy. One such battle involves tricking a man-eating plant into slamming its heads against spikes so that it becomes dazed and vulnerable.
  • Marvel Ultimate Alliance uses this in a couple boss battles using Action Commands.
  • In Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, Samus defeats the Grapple Guardian by dodging just as its beam hit an electrified pillar that stuns it for a few moments.
  • The only way to get a record for the record player in Minecraft (other than being really lucky with dungeon chests) is to get a skeleton to kill a creeper with its arrow.
  • Monkey Island: A variant appears in Escape from Monkey Island; the enormous Final Boss appears in a rehashing of the game's martial-arts-code-breaker puzzle, but can't be defeated in regular combat. The player is expected to have discovered and remembered that combatants will get frustrated and beat at their own head if stalemated, and induce the boss to do so, crushing its controller who was conveniently riding on top.
  • Played straight in Monster Hunter. Certain monsters with very large fangs or horns can get them temporarily stuck in conveniently-placed ledges or walls by application of this technique. Doesn't work once the offending body part has been smashed, though. When dealing with the Alatreon, there are two ledges at the edge of the arena. This is the only reliable way to get at these horns while it's still standing — the other ways are knocking it off its feet and putting it to sleep.
  • In Persona 4 enemies that miss have a chance of falling down. If it is the last enemy on their feet at the time, you get a free combination attack.
  • Phantasy Star Online:
    • The easiest way to dispatch a Garanz is to open the menu to keep yourself in non-combat mode and running in circles around it, making it hit itself with its missiles while you take no damage.
    • And in the sequel, the Garongo is heavily armored and attacks by curling into a ball and ramming you. Goading it into hitting a wall will topple it over and expose its vulnerable underside.
  • Pikmin 2: The easiest way to clear out areas with Cannon Beetle Larva (which shoot rocks out at you) is to lure them into shooting every other enemy in the vicinity. It also spares your pikmin from being steamrolled by the rock projectiles in the process.
  • In Pokémon, the moves Jump Kick and High Jump Kick inflict damage on the user if they miss. Though it probably only counts as a dodge if the target's evasiveness is raised such as with Double Team.
  • Portal:
    • To beat GLaDOS, you have to do this with some missile turrets, either standing close by and aiming the turrets, or using portals to send a missile over.
    • Portal 2 uses a similar concept. Of course, without real weapons this is pretty much the only way a boss battle can go in those games.
  • In Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones, That One Boss fight involves two really big guys. The only way to beat them is to dodge and get an axe stuck in the ground.
  • Averted in the fight against El Odio in Psychonauts, interestingly, as not only is it a Bullfight Boss in terms of the trope definition, it's a Bullfight Boss in literal terms. He's rather intelligent for a boss of his kind and probably won't end up touching the wall at all.
  • Resident Evil:
    • One of the quicker ways to defeat the Garradors in Resident Evil 4 is to stand with your back to a wall, get them to charge you, and run for it (conveniently, they usually don't swerve after you), causing them to get their claws stuck in said wall and allowing you a free strike to the weak point on their backs.
    • Resident Evil 3: Nemesis has the Nemesis. If you are skilled or lucky, you can get him to kill zombies for you, since he destroys anything in his path to get to the player.
  • In the Nintendo 3DS downloadable game Sakura Samurai, timing your dodges and attacks is the key to victory, as opposed to Button Mashing. You can dodge most enemies' attacks normally, but it's more effective to time your dodges and backsteps just as the enemy is about to attack, then closing the gap with an attack of your own. Doing this properly earns you "Precision Points", which can be traded in for gold.
  • Players can destroy Mycon Podships in Star Control by guiding their plasmoids back into them.
  • Super Mario Bros.:
    • Used in Super Mario Galaxy to trick Bowser into performing a Ground Pound over a glass cover. Said cover was on top of molten hot liquid that would burn Bowser.
    • Of course this actually harkens back to Super Mario Bros. 3, where Mario tricks Bowser into destroying the floor, which covered a Bottomless Pit.
    • Also in Galaxy, this technique can be used to turn Bullet Bills into Helpful Mooks by tricking them into colliding with something you want blown up (including a certain boss's weakpoint).
    • The Post-Final Boss of Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time does not allow the Mario Bros. to attack at all. They can, however, still dodge everything, and every attack that is dodged will mysteriously come back and hit the boss. Repeat until dead.
    • There's also a boss in Mario & Luigi: Dream Team that's like this, with a rules gimmick set before the battle that says "only fight via counter attacks".
  • Super Smash Bros.:
    • This can be done against certain opponents with certain moves. Jigglypuff is the biggest example, with a fully charged Roll-Out causing it to shoot off in one direction at insane speed. If it hits, the attack stops and all the momentum is transferred to the opponent for a KO. A crafty opponent can just as easily avoid the attack at the last second and watch Jigglypuff fly off the side of the screen itself. This can also happen with Squirtle's and Sonic's similar moves, though Squirtle's moves really slow and Sonic, while he starts skidding if you try to stop, can also cancel the momentum simply by jumping during the move.
    • Super Smash Bros. Brawl:
      • It's possible to do significant damage to the boss Duon by getting its homing missiles to crash into it.
      • The Auroros enemies attack by dive-bombing players with their sharp beaks, and remain stuck in the ground if they miss. Players can bait them into attacking and dodge at the last minute to get them like this, after which they can be picked up and thrown like javelins.
    • Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U: The trailer for Little Mac has a scene where an attempt to attack Wii Fit Trainer in the air has her simply yoga-pose out of the way and then start doing push ups as Little Mac falls off the stage.
  • Taz in Escape from Mars:
    • The game requires this tactic against one boss, a bull that one must trick into running into a wall.
    • Also used against two alligators; you need to get the stupid one to drop his net over the smart one.
  • TIE Fighter lets you do this, although it's much easier with the large, slower-moving capital ships compared to fighters and bombers. As a bonus, if two enemy capital ships accidentally shoot each other, they'll keep blasting each other until one of them dies!.
  • Time Commando allowed you to do this. In some cases, tricking one enemy into hitting another would cause them to begin attacking each other until one of them was dead.
  • In Tomb Raider Anniversary, during the fight with the T-Rex this is the fastest method of killing it, but it's optional since you can just pump it full of bullets until you reach the end of the fight where this is in full effect. The force of the T-Rex smashing into the building behind you even leaves you with a conveniently placed stepping stone to get into the next area.
  • The first form of the Final Boss in An Untitled Story is defeated by having his charge shot bounce right back at him.
  • Clementine does this twice in The Walking Dead: Season Two.
    • In Episode 1, after Winston and her are still dazed from falling to the ground, she moves out of the path of a walker coming for them and lets it eat Winston instead. This may have been accidental, though.
    • In Episode 2, she dodges a walker that would've tackled her off the bridge she was trying to cross, leaving it to fall into the waters below.
  • Played With in The Witcher: when fighting the golem in the swamps, Geralt soon discovers that thanks to its insane Damage Reduction, it is practically unkillable by conventional means (read: his swords). Instead, he has to lure it to the nearby magical lighting rods and activate them to summon the lightning, using the short delay before it appears to get clear so it strikes the golem instead of him.
  • You're actually rewarded for pulling this off in World of Tanks. The medal "Lucky" is given to anyone that is within 50 meters of an enemy tank being team killed. It should be noted that any attempt to set this up yourself will likely go about as well as expected, but it's not uncommon to see ELC AMX drivers pull this off as their tank is both small and fast, and can force many players to take "snap shots" that they otherwise wouldn't, which results in this trope being played out.

    Web Animation 

    Web Comics 
  • Just a few Instances in The Beast Legion:
  • Bob and George:
  • Grrl Power:
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • Inverted when Roy confronts a half-ogre who uses a Game-Breaker from the 3.5 rules to attack him twice a round while dodging backwards. The half-ogre eventually falls off a cliff.
    • Roy dodges an eldritch blast from an annoyed warlock by leaning down, and it ends up hitting Ganji in the back, precipitating the already-brewing Bar Brawl.
    • In "Five Rows Down, Three Columns Over", Roy tricks his Dumb Muscle Evil Counterpart Thog into crashing into a series of columns in order to bring part of the roof down on him. Although it's not exactly dodging, since the D&D rules of Thog's attack specify that it cannot do any arena damage unless the attack works.
      Roy: That's how I use my Intelligence score in combat, dumbass!
    • Attempted, but averted, when Belkar is fighting a goliath vampire without weapon: he's planning on tripping it and sending it tumbling down the mountain; even if it's unlikely to kill it, it would get it out of the way for Belkar to enter the temple. But Roy just shows up without warning and cleaves the vampire in half.
  • Outsider: With several torpedoes closing in fast and no other available options, Talon flies Highland-Seven at full speed through the open superstructure of the space station they'd intended to simply dock at, letting it take the torpedo impacts while the shuttle escapes.
  • Sluggy Freelance:
    • In "That Which Redeems", initially the only creature standing against the demons invading the Dimension of Lame is an alternative counterpart of the ferret Kiki, who's from some third dimension still and has more attitude than everyone in the Dimension of Lame put together. She's seen jumping quickly between the demons, causing them to skewer each other on their bladed weapons when trying to hit her.
    • Bun-bun pulls this thrice during "Oceans Unmoving". The first time Bun-bun dodges Calix's throwing axe so that it cuts part of the ship's rigging instead, allowing him to do a dramatic rope swing attack. The second time, Bun-bun dodges another (assumed) axe throw, this time positioning himself so that the axe will hit his enemy, Blacksoul, instead. Unfortunately, Calix has been persuaded to leave by a third party and does not hear the insult that's supposed to incite his attack, leaving Bun-bun looking pretty silly in front of his archnemesis. Shortly after in the same fight, Bun-bun dodges Blacksoul's blades to cause him to get them stuck in the barrel behind him; Blacksoul retaliates by picking up the barrel and using it like a hammer.
  • This is pretty much the extent of Kit's fighting style in The Story of Anima. You'll only hit him when he wants you to.

    Web Original 
  • In Worm, Contessa is exceptionally good at this thanks to her particular brand of precognition.

    Web Videos 
  • In Mario Warfare, Waluigi positions himself such that Mario's misses hurt himself on pipes.

    Western Animation 
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender: Put simply, Deadly Dodging is a big part of Airbender martial arts.
    • Aang uses this trick to get Zhao to fling fireballs at his own fleet of questionably wooden ships.
    • Also occurs unintentionally during an episode where Aang is training with Katara and Toph, where he ducks a boulder from Toph by burrowing into the ground, which proceeds to hit Katara, who is standing behind.
    • And again in "The Headband", wherein Aang is attacked by the school bully. He manages to defeat the bully with his hands held behind his back and an innocent smile on his face, by dodging in such a way that causes his opponent to throw himself to the ground.
    • Averting this is a major aspect of Aang's Earthbending training, as Earthbending is both the physical and philosophical opposite of Airbending. In the episode "Bitter Work", Aang has a hard time figuring out Earthbending because his natural instinct is to dodge and weave around a target rather than facing it head on. Sokka is trapped in a crevasse while a Saber-Toothed Moose-Lion is looking to attack him. Aang tries distracting it by Airbending it away, but the creature is stubborn, dead set on killing Sokka anyway. Aang has to stand his ground and directly attack the Moose-Lion to get it to leave them alone. Toph tells him that standing his ground is the first step, and as a result, Aang proceeds to perform proper Earthbending for the first time.
  • Classic Disney Shorts: Chip 'n Dale use it against Donald Duck in the short "Out on a Limb", when he chases them with a lawnmower and they lure him into a power line.
  • Code Lyoko:
    • Before Season 3 Aelita has no proper attack power, and the only real way she can damage the monsters (when not counting on the Lyoko Warriors) is by Deadly Dodging. In Episode 39, "A Bad Turn", alone on Lyoko, Aelita manages to get rid of a whole swarm of Frelions by flying on the Overboard and having them ram the mountain or each other.
    • This is the main tactic used against the Megatanks. They're invulnerable to the Lyoko Warriors' attacks as long as their two half-shells are closed, but a fall in the Digital Sea will readily dispatch one. Thus, pushing them past a cliff or letting them fall victim to their own momentum whenever possible is the favored option.
    • In episode 86, William dodges both Aelita's Energy Field and Odd's Laser Arrow by ducking. The Energy Field harmlessly flows above him, continues its course, and hits Odd in the chest, devirtualizing him.
  • Dungeons & Dragons: This is Sheila's main tactic in a fight, thanks to putting her Invisibility Cloak to very good use. All the monsters charging her are sure to end up slamming against a wall or each other after she turns invisible. In fact, it can sometimes look like the cloak is turning her fully immaterial, so adept she is at escaping enemies even in tight spots.
  • In Freedom Fighters: The Ray, Ray confronts a pair of bank robbers and knocks one out. The other one aims a gun at him, while another (unseen) robber aims his gun at him from behind. Ray uses his ability to become intangible, causing both robbers to shoot one another.
  • An episode of Futurama has Leela fighting her old martial arts master as he remotely controls a giant kill-bot fighting Bender in the wrestling ring just above him. Leela tricks the guy into punching through the floor of the ring, hitting himself in the head.
  • Used three times in Disney's Gargoyles, Hudson and Elisa both execute the version causing mooks charging from opposite directions to crash into each other, while the trickster Coyote baits his robotic namesake into toppling the steel skeleton of an unfinished building onto himself. Lampshaded by Brooklyn:
    Brooklyn: It's incredible how often that move works.
  • Jackie Chan Adventures: Tohru Wouldn't Hit a Girl so, when forced to face a female criminal, he uses Deadly Dodging to defeat her.
  • Josie and the Pussycats: In "A Greenthumb Is Not a Goldfinger", two mooks lunge at Alexandra at the same time. She ducks and they bump heads and collapse in a heap.
  • Looney Tunes: Bugs Bunny pulls this trick a couple of times while fighting the bull in the classic short "Bully for Bugs".
  • Since Secret Squirrel can't fight the endangered One-Ton Panda without getting arrested, he tricks the villain into whacking himself with various objects by acting as an unhelpful bodyguard. And then arrests him for putting himself in danger like that.
  • Spider-Man:
    • Used to defeat more than a few supervillains Spidey faces in Spider-Man: The Animated Series, due to the fact that he isn't allowed to punch anybody thanks to Executive Meddling. At the end of the Hobgoblin's debut two-parter, Spidey tricks him into smashing his glider against an exhaust tower at Oscorp, causing him to lose control and crash into the river.
    • The Spectacular Spider-Man:
      • Spider-Man does this while mocking Shocker, goading him into unwittingly blasting a building's supports, causing it to collapse.
      • Spidey also uses this in a sewer system, making the Rhino punch so many holes in the pipes that the steam overheats him, and leaves him exhausted and delirious.
      • Referred to and subverted in one of the later episodes, where Rhino attacks Spider-Man. Spidey believes that he is able to dodge each and make Rhino look foolish. However, it turns out that Rhino isn't expecting to hit anyone; his attacks are mainly aimed at the supports of the carpark they are fighting in, with having someone to aim at a distraction and a bonus. When Rhino points out his plan to bring the building crashing down on top of them, Spider-Man laments that he fell for a variation of the above trick he used to defeat Shocker. When the dust settles, Rhino tosses off the rubble on top of him with ease, Spider-Man has a bit more trouble.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles:
    • Splinter likes doing this in the 2003 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon. In one episode, he uses it to defeat the Shredder by bringing down a wooden water tower on him; in another, he combines it with Elemental Rock–Paper–Scissors against a group of elementals.
    • The 1987 version has the title characters do this when Bebop and Rocksteady are charging, causing the two to collide head-first into each other. The first arcade game has a Boss Battle where this scene can be duplicated.
  • In the season 2 finale of Transformers: Prime, the US government liaison Agent Fowler attempts a heroic holding action against the approaching Decepticon hordes while the Autobots and their human allies evacuate their base. His helicopter is quickly damaged and he's pursued by an Insecticon. When an Air Vehicon flies at him, he uses the smoke from his damaged copter to obscure the two Decepticons from each other before pulling up at the last moment, leading to the Insecticon and Vehicon colliding and exploding.
  • In Wakfu, this is another use of Yugo's portals, by going through them or having the enemy going through them. A good fighting tactic against Igôle in season 1 episode 21, which finally results in the beast going down a chasm (this only slows it for a while, though).
  • Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner: The Road Runner makes Wile E. Coyote run off a cliff in almost every episode several times.

    Real Life 
  • Defied in Real Life: Many modern homing munitions (like missiles and torpedoes) are designed so that they self-destruct if they turn back towards the launching platform. In addition the missiles are now often smart enough to recognize the signature of an aircraft on its sensors and tell the difference between friendly and enemy.
  • Aikido is based on a similar principle, as it focuses on using the momentum of the opponent's attack against him. As well as the "sticking hands" technique seen in Chinese martial arts like Wing Chun and Taiji Quan.
  • Stories abound of WWI fighter pilots surviving many-to-one ambushes by flying between the numerous opponents, thus making them reluctant to shoot.
  • An USAF EF-111note  managed to shake off an Iraqi Mirage F1 fighter jet during Operation Desert Storm in this manner. It lured the Mirage towards a dune and pulled up at the last possible second while the fighter jet flew straight into the dune.


Video Example(s):


Indy's deadly dodging

During the fight in Cairo, a bad guy attempts to stab Indy with his sword. Indy dodges the attack, causing him to stick a second bad guy with the blade.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (8 votes)

Example of:

Main / DeadlyDodging

Media sources: