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Dodge the Bullet

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Dr. McNinja: The problem with your gun is you have to point it where you want to send the bullets, and I can see that.
Frans Rayner: The bullets are supposed to be faster than you and you know that!

A character who can stroll into the middle of a firefight and emerge unscathed. Guns Are Worthless against them. They aren't Immune to Bullets, but they're so fast they might as well be. If you shoot at them from any farther than point blank range, they'll jump out of the way, or use some impressively small object to deflect the bullet, Improbable Aiming Skills be damned. We're talking about literal bullet dodging here, not those moments when someone manages to avoid taking part on something disastrous or shameful.

Considering the speed at which bullets and some other projectiles travel, these kind of reflexes are blatantly unrealistic, the domain of superhumans and Super Speedsters. Most guns fire at the speed of sound or faster, so by the time you hear the shot, it will have either hit you or missed you, and even if you could see the shot and react the human body is too slow to do much to get out of the way. Writers who want a Badass Normal to dodge bullets will maintain a modicum of realism by saying the character is simply predicting where the gunman is going to fire and making sure they're not there when the trigger is pulled.

This accomplishes the same goal as Stormtrooper Marksmanship, but in the opposite way: The hero wins despite being outgunned, not because his enemies are terrible shots, but because he's just that good. Oddly, despite being able to dodge bullets, when the fight turns to fisticuffs the hero usually becomes much less able to dodge the much slower punches. Oftentimes the bullets themselves will be much, much slower in the dodge scene than in reality to not make this disparity look as weird.

Coincidentally, if the enemies did have standard mook accuracy, this dodging probably wouldn't work, as mooks tend to hit everything except where they're aiming (The Hero), so the only way to actually get shot is not have the gun pointed at you.

Sometimes this skill is imparted by a background in Gun Fu, Gun Kata,note  Implausible Fencing Powers, or Super-Reflexes. Maybe the enemy was Point Defenseless? For maximum coolness, show off the dodging in Bullet Time. See also Could Have Been Messy. More Dakka may be employed to attempt to overcome this. Compare Deadly Dodging. Also compare Bullet Catch, which is even cooler, and Catch and Return, which takes this to its logical extreme. Contrast Bullet Dodges You. When you upgrade from bullets to missiles, High-Speed Missile Dodge is the result. Upon closer inspection, the bullets dodged also often fall into Painfully Slow Projectile.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Belldandy from Ah! My Goddess seems to be able to avoid harm, without trying, even in cases where everyone else gets injured. Once, she walks through a hail of rubber bands without getting hit once. Another time, she is completely unaffected by a massive lighting strike that destroys the temple and leaves everyone else in a blackened heap. Well, y'know — goddess... thing is, so are the others, Belldandy on the other hand seems to either be super lucky or have unconscious probability control.
  • Assassination Classroom: Koro-sensei's most common trick, and the main thing that makes him so nigh-impossible to kill, is using his Super-Speed and Super-Reflexes to dodge hails of automatic gunfire. Granted the guns the students usually use against him are air rifles firing special BB's, but when facing actual live ammo he dodges just as easily.
  • Claire Stanfield from Baccano! can do this. But then, he's the sort of guy who can reasonably be mistaken for an urban legend.
  • As per his ludicrous Super-Speed, Sebastian of Black Butler can dodge bullets with ease. He doesn't actually need to dodge them, but they do tend to make an awful mess of his tailcoat.
  • In Black Cat ex-assassin and gunman Train Heartnet blocks bullets with his gun, Hades, made of a special, ultra-strong metal called Orichalcum. Train's supernatural speed is never directly discussed, but it's implied it comes from his previous life as an uber-assassin. Almost all the other characters, as well, block or dodge bullets. Some with supernatural help, others simply with speed.
  • Overdosed in Black Lagoon. This is what keeps Rokuro "Rock" Okajima alive when his Chain of Deals fails — his version is normal compared to his Pseudo-Tsundere Action Girlfriend Revy (yeah, no Bullet Time for the little Rock).
  • Done in Case Closed The Movie 13, The Raven Chaser. Ran Mouri dodges a bullet fired by Irish when he's standing right in front of her.
  • Some of the better fighters in Change 123 can pull this off, with lots of effort spent explaining how it actually works. You don't have to dodge the bullet, you just have to make the guy with the gun miss.
  • Suzaku from Code Geass is shown at several points dodging automatic gunfire, generally by moving fast enough that a computer-controlled turret can't quite keep up with him.
  • In Cowboy Bebop, the Red Eye Serum not only sends user into potential bloody rampages, but vastly increases their speed and perception, allowing even small-time mooks to dodge bullets (there are also subtle hints that Big Bad Vicious uses it as well, which is why he can successfully use a katana against gun wielders).
  • Fairy Tail: Wendy does this several times against Sniper Drake in the Sun Village Arc by using her Super-Senses to hear the shots and then dodging out of the way (even knocking her companions out of the way several times too), to his surprise.
  • Fuhrer King Bradley is the ultimate bullet timer in Fullmetal Alchemist. The guy, despite admittedly being near 60-years-old not only weaves through gunfire, but casually deflects automatic gunfire with his sword! You wonder why people even try to shoot him...?
  • Ghost in the Shell: SAC_2045: Posthumans can calculate the trajectories of incoming bullets before they're even fired. This isn't shown in Bullet Time; instead it looks like the target's body is being remotely manipulated out of the way of the bullets.
  • The eponymous girls from the "Girls with Guns Trilogy" (Noir, Madlax, El Cazador de la Bruja) do this all the time, starting with the opening of the shows. Madlax is a particularly ridiculous example, as half the time she manages to dodge so fast that we don't even see her move (although this could qualify as Immune to Bullets), and the rest of the time she is dancing around the bullets.
  • Grenadier takes this to a whole different level. Yajiro can deflect bullets with his sword without much problem, and Rushuna can't be shot even from point blank range! Let's put it in perspective: a villain with a galdo and an army of marksmen (who just wiped out a troop of samurai) with rifles and automatic weapons, can't hit Rushuna when she's standing in a courtyard surrounded by them. She has one six-gun. She wipes them out.
  • Hanyuu stops time to make herself dodge a bullet in the finale of Higurashi's second season due to her god powers. Except in the canal drying chapter, where she dies. Again. She also did this to Keiichi with multiple bullets in the Matsuri only arc, Miotsukushi-hen.
  • An early demonstration of Star Platinum's powers in the third part of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure is when Jotaro points a gun at his head and pulls the trigger. Star Platinum catches the bullet right after it leaves the barrel.
  • A pretty damn Awesome moment in episode three of K has Yata dodge someone shooting him at point blank range! Justified by his enhanced abilities and powers from being a Clansman of the Red King. He then proceeds to thrash the guy who shot him and his companion.
  • Double subverted in Katanagatari when Emonzaemon is mystified on how he fails to hit Shichika using two modern pistols at near point blank. Shichika revealed that they all did hit, except he purposefully used his super speed to catch all the bullets away from anything vital. He's implied to have the speed to actually dodge the shots but his Death Seeker status meant he solved the problem of getting in close with the most masochistic way possible.
  • Probably one of the earliest anime and manga examples, Goemon of Lupin III regularly blocks bullets by cutting them with his sword. In his first appearance, the bullets are even shown splitting apart after hitting the ground. Lupin's tricks make him seem similarly fast, as he's managed to leap out of a full-body Latex Perfection disguise fast enough for the disguise to be shot instead of him.
  • In Lycoris Recoil, Chisato seemingly has this ability, since a gunman using a rifle at close range was unable to hit her and she's able to dodge Takina's hairtie bullet at the end of Episode 2, despite Takina being behind her. It turns out this is because she has enough awareness to know where the bullet is going to end up; Kusunoki states Chisato could dodge a bullet fired right against her head.
  • Many of the Mobile suits from Mobile Suit Gundam are often seen doing this on a larger scale (dodging cannon fire rather than bullets). And it doesn't seem limited to New Types. It seems that any MS piloted by a named character can zip past enemy fire. If it's a mobile suit/weapon going up against a conventional weapon or vehicle, then even a nameless mook will suddenly develop bullet dodging enabling precognition.
  • It's been explicitly stated in Negima! Magister Negi Magi that Shinmeiryuu swordsman aren't affected by bullets because of the ability to swat them out of midair with their swords. These tend to be roughly 2-metre-long Nodachi swords.
  • In One Piece Mihawk changes the course of two bullets fired at him with his BFS. Zoro claims that it is because Mihawk is so fluid in his sword motions.
    • Later on, we see Zoro dodging a gun shot at point-blank range fired by a World Noble, even earlier than that we see Sanji do the same with Montblanc Cricket. Luffy one-ups both of them dodging Pacifista's laser beams and claims that they're "too slow".
  • Similar to the page quote, the Big Bad of Parasyte isn't fast enough to dodge the actual bullets. He is fast enough, however, to be able to see where the police point their guns, and be able to move out of the way.
  • For Rurouni Kenshin, gifted in the art of god-like-speed, dodging bullets (as long as he can see the line of fire) is child's play. Granted, these are old timey rifles, but it still looked cool; he later just barely manages to outrun an early-model Gatling gun long enough for the guy using it to run out of bullets. This is kept in the Live-Action Adaptation. During Kenshin's battle with Gein (first battle he has to expend effort at all in the movie) he uses his sword to block the bullets that Gein shot at him...while disoriented and upside down. He does it so well, that when he's back on his feet, Gein's still shooting and almost out of bullets. But Kenshin just. Keeps. Blocking.
  • In the Sengoku Basara anime Uesugi Kenshin takes on a woman holding a gatling gun. Not only that, he runs headlong into the volley of bullets in order to get to her. And dodges every single one. In a cloud of rose petals! Given that the series in nominally set in the Sengoku period, how Kenshin managed to dodge the gatling gun is perhaps a less important question than what it was doing there in the first place. note 
  • The Mariage in StrikerS Sound Stage X of the Lyrical Nanoha franchise. In the track where we first meet one, a squad of TSAB mages fires a barrage of energy shots at her, only for the Mariage to block all of them with one arm blade.
  • Sword Art Online: Played with in the game Gun Gale Online, which, as the name implies, involves lots of guns. The game uses a "bullet prediction line" to warn players when they are about to be shot to give them a small opening to hide behind cover. The point of this is to simulate the natural combat instincts real soldiers have, and isn't enough to actually dodge bullets. However, Kirito is a veteran of Sword Art Online, and not only has those instincts that the system is meant to simulate, but the best reflexes in the entire game. This results in him not only being fast enough to dodge bullets, but to cut them apart in midair.
  • Vash from Trigun does this a couple of times. It was lampshaded in the first instance where he explains that the enemy is "just a bad shot'. "e is one of the more amusing examples because of how he dodges the bullets in the first half of the anime. Eventually, we are shown that he is fast enough to change the paths of bullets in mid-air... by throwing rocks at them. Notably, he is using the "predict where the marksman is going to fire, then dodge before they shoot" method. (Though this is justified; he has the incredible analytical skills and reflexes that would be needed to pull this off because he isn't human) He also does get turned into swiss cheese repeatedly once Cerebus Syndrome gets into full swing because of this.

    Comic Books 
  • All speedsters. All of them. From Wild Cards' Joe Twitch to The Flash family of The DCU to the Marvel Universe character Quicksilver. Every last one of them can dodge bullets or pluck them out of the air.
  • Batman:
    • Batman does this on a regular basis as well.
    • As does Cassandra Cain — Batgirl II — (pictured). Born to be the ultimate assassin/bodyguard, her father raised her in a bunker under special conditions that deprived her of any form of spoken or written language so she could learn to read body language and movement like a book. Using this ability, Cass can see where the gunman would point the gun and when they'd pull the trigger so she could step out of the way before they fire. Or in several cases, step out of the way after they've fired. To the point of drawing the bullets hanging in the air as she steps around them.
    • Batgirl: Year One: When Barbara Gordon steps into Batman's training room for the first time and a robot attempts to gun her down, she quickly backs flips out of its bullets' way.
    • Batman: Black and White: In "Snow Job", Batman dodges through a rain of machine gun fire while in free-fall, getting a few holes in his cape but nothing worse. (It ends up being a dream sequence.)
  • Blade does this quite often, even though bullets are a minor annoyance he can quickly heal from. Justified since his vampiric powers give him Super-Reflexes. Though when he's in the mood to dodge, he doesn't get hit. In fact in a situation very similar to the trope picture of Cassandra Cain, Blade pulls the exact same maneuver as she did. However its taken a step further: As Deadpool fires at him, Blade gradually moves forward, dodging the bullets until he is close enough to punch Deadpool in the head.
  • In the fourth issue of the Season 8 comic continuation of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Buffy and Satsu are seen fighting through numerous soldiers while outmanoeuvring their various gunfire.
  • Captain America can do this pretty well, although he prefers blocking them with his Immune to Bullets shield. Since the shield isn't that big, it still takes amazing reflexes for it to protect him as well as it does.
  • Daredevil does this with a combination of Flash Step speed and his Super-Senses allowing him to track bullets in flight.
  • Amadeus Cho, from The Incredible Hercules (no, really). He's a badass normal in that he is so smart he has the ability to figure out where the bullets are going to be and not be there. Despite being physically normal.
  • John Doe of Nth Man: The Ultimate Ninja , thanks to a lifetime of Ninja training. In the first issue of his comic, he dodges a bullet fired at him from point-blank range; later, he dodges a sniper's bullets while running uphill towards the gunman.
  • Subverted in Garth Ennis' The Punisher series: at one point he follows a criminal who muses how he once killed four federal agents then dodged a bullet fired by the fifth and killed him too. Frank's solution? The criminal may have dodged one, but he cannot dodge thirty.
  • Sin City plays around with this. Miho and Wallace generally dance around gunfire. Dwight avoids it most of the time but has been pinned down by enemy fire more than once with nowhere to go. Marv avoids gunfire more often than not but is known to get clipped every now and then (not that it stops him). Hartigan was clipped in every gun battle he was involved in, although considering he was an old man suffering from a heart condition, this is quite impressive.
  • Spider-Man can dodge bullets due to his spider-sense. According to Marvel's published data, Spider-Man's reflexes are fast enough to dodge single-shot gunfire, he only needs his spider-sense to dodge full-auto weapons fire.
  • Superman, Supergirl, Power Girl... often invert this: they're fast enough to deliberately place their own invulnerable bodies in the path of bullets, to protect whatever's behind them.
  • When the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles aren't spinning their weapons, they're dodging bullets and lasers and so on.
  • Wesley Gibson and his father from Wanted. In the opening scene Gibson Sr. dodges sniper fire. Wesley is not usually seen being shot at, and it's possible he simply kills opponents before they can fire. In one exception, he deflects the bullet with a knife. Even then, Wesley was surprised that the deflection actually worked.
  • Wonder Woman regularly deflects bullets and any kind of energy weapon with her bracelets. The bracelets are Immune to Bullets, but moving her arms to block the bullets definitely counts as dodging. Justified by being "faster than Mercury" since her earliest appearances.

    Fan Works 
  • Boldores and Boomsticks: Absol uses Detect to slip through a spray of shards fired by Cinder.
  • Code Geass: The Prepared Rebellion: Sayoko dodges a bullet from Tetsuya by replacing herself with a large box right as he's pulling the trigger.
  • In The Good Hunter, Druella dodges a shot from the Hunter's flintlock pistol by flapping her wings twice to jink to the side.
  • Old West: Rattlesnake Jake does this when Johan Quall fires at him with two revolvers. This is a case of a justified trope because Jake has memorized Quall's firing pattern in case the ring-tailed cat would ever turn his guns on the rattlesnake.

    Films — Animation 
  • Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs: During a chase between mammals and lizards. There’s a smart pterosaur who thinks to dodge several fruits fired at him by Crash and Eddie.
  • Mulan: Part of the training for the new recruits is to learn to run through a hail of burning arrows without being hit. This is almost an inversion in that in the beginning when they are no good at it they do some actual dodging, but once he's got the hang of it, Yao runs through without being hit or making any visible effort to dodge.
  • Wreck-It Ralph: Felix dodges the Hero's Duty soldiers' bullets via Wall Jump. Particularly justified in his case since, in his game, dodging stuff is half the gameplay.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Alien: Resurrection, one of the Aliens manages to repeatedly dodge point-blank shots from a guy established to have nearly RoboCop-level Improbable Aiming Skills.
  • Blade Trilogy:
    • Blade: The main villain, Frost, can do this. Though no other vampire besides him and Dracula has ever done this, and it was never mentioned again.
    • Blade: Trinity: Drake can not only dodge bullets fired from near-point blank ranges, but also change his form at the same time. Justified because he is the friggin' Dracula.
  • Almost the same thing occurs with the canteen food fight in Blazing Saddles, where ultimate 'black hat' Hedley Lamarr ducks out unstained, only to apparently get nailed with a pie by some malicious party lurking in the washroom.
  • In Bulletproof Monk, the titular character appears to be able to do this as well, although he still gets shot by the Big Bad at the beginning after dealing with all the other Nazis firing submachineguns. One of the scenes (which, naturally, made it into the trailer) shows a Mook firing at the Monk with the bullet-time effect showing us the bullet moving past the Monk's nose, with the Monk following the bullet with his gaze. However, the bullet had already missed by that time (the Monk didn't even move aside), and we simply see that the Monk can react fast enough to see a moving bullet.
  • Daredevil (2003): The eponymous hero is able to dodge Bullseye's projectiles. At one point, he back-flips his way through a window's worth of flying glass shards. His senses make him aware of the whole 3D environment around him, and he's able to tell from an opponent's stance which way they're about to shoot (or throw). A bit like Vamp from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (see video game section below).
    Bullseye: I missed... I never miss!
  • Edge of Tomorrow. Cage is stuck in a "Groundhog Day" Loop on a battlefield. Not only does this give him a vast amount of combat experience, he's also able to dodge bullets or other battlefield hazards just by moving differently from what he did last time he got killed. Eventually this results in him giving Rita Vrataski a pace-by-pace, second-by-second rundown on how to dodge every bullet or explosion she faces in any given scenario.
  • The Grammaton Clerics of Equilibrium have this as part of the Gun Kata package, though their opponents seem to have graduated from the Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy.
  • The Great Leslie (Tony Curtis) in The Great Race is inexplicably the sole clean soul in the midst of a chaotic food fight in a bakery, perhaps due to his white outfit. He does get hit with a pie (by someone on "his side", accidentally) at the very end of the fight. $18,000 (in 1965 dollars) worth of pies were used for the scene, which lasts over four minutes and took several days to shoot (necessitating the careful reconstruction each morning of the characters' appearance at the end of the previous day of shooting).
  • Inverted in I, Robot. "By the time you have fired, I will have moved Dr. Calvin's head into the path of your bullet."
  • The Beast from Kung Fu Hustle demonstrates that he is a Not So Harmless Old Master by catching a bullet fired at him from close range. Admittedly, one he fired at himself, but still...
  • Jet Li's character in Lethal Weapon 4 does not seem to fear guns and in one scene dodges a bullet fired at him in the back unawares.
  • The Matrix:
    • The Agents, though they can't dodge everything. Dodging bullets also requires them to have their feet on the ground, which Trinity takes advantage of in the second movie.
    • Neo mentions it early on:
      Neo: What are you trying to tell me, that I can dodge bullets?
      Morpheus: No, Neo. I'm trying to tell you that when you're ready, you won't have to.
    • When the time comes, he does it almost as well as the Agents, although a few bullets still graze his skin. Shortly afterward, he lives up to Morpheus's claim: first by coming back to life after being shot, then by stopping bullets in mid-air.
  • Cris Johnson in Next can see two minutes into the future and play out various scenarios in order to pick the best outcome. At one point in the movie, he finds himself up against a terrorist with a fully loaded gun. From our perspective, we get to see him split off in various directions in an attempt to dodge all the bullets complete with each false choice getting shot and disappearing until only one is left standing, the one outcome where he successfully dodged all the bullets.
  • Also Jet Li's character, Yulaw from The One has superhuman physical abilities and is once shown dodging a bullet.
  • Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins features a man being trained to do this, complete with comments about which muscles to watch for twitching and why you shouldn't cheat by remembering how many bullets are meant to be in the gun.
  • Boris The Bullet Dodger from Snatch. seems to have a talent for making bullets miss him. In Boris' death scene, Tony has to use every bullet from a Desert Eagle clip before he manages to hit Boris, and that only works because he aims very carefully with the last shot. The .50AE Desert Eagle's absolutely hellacious recoil probably wasn't doing Tony's marksmanship any favours though.
  • Star Wars:
    • Jedi knights dodge and deflect Slow Lasers (often straight back at the shooter) so often that one wonders why individual mooks even try to shoot them. (As we find out in the prequel trilogy, the Jedi aren't all as good as the main characters, particularly against an army. Moreover, individual lightsaber styles or "forms" may or may not emphasize deflection and defense.) Justified in that blasters are actually particle weapons that fire bolts moving slightly slower than bullets, and the Jedi use their Combat Clairvoyance to anticipate attacks and defend against them before they even happen. This can be defeated with lots and lots of guns, and lots and lots of firing, in a rapid succession, a.k.a. More Dakka.
    • In one of their very first scenes, C3PO and R2-D2 stroll right through the middle of a firefight without getting so much as scorched. While nobody should be aiming at the obvious noncombatants while there are hostiles returning fire, the scene's supposed to be part of a Trope Namer for poor aiming skills...
    • One of the infamous edits to the original film prevents Han from shooting Greedo first by having Han effortlessly dodge a point-blank range blaster shot before firing his own lethal shot.
    • In Rogue One, Blind Weaponmaster Chirrut Imwe dodges a storm of blasterfire as effectively as a Jedi. Whether this is the result of his other senses being enhanced or tapping into the Force is never explained.
  • During the WWI sequence in Sucker Punch, as Baby Doll is closing in on the German courier, she uses her katana to parry the bullets he fires at her. Some of the other girls tilt, twist, and leap out of the way of bullets.
  • Lampshaded in UHF. George fantasizes about raiding a heavily guarded prison camp to rescue Stanley. At one point, George stands inches away from a soldier firing a gun at him, but he keeps missing. Later in the fantasy, George catches a bullet in his teeth, chews it, and then fires the pieces out of his mouth back at the shooter like a machine gun.
  • Yang from The Warrior's Way, being a badass ninja-like assassin, dodges bullets left and right throughout the movie beofre slicing apart their shooters. The climax have him interrupting a standoff and avoiding a bullet from the Big Bad... from less than two meters away.
  • In X-Men: Days of Future Past, Peter Maximoff/Quicksilver not only dodges the bullets in the Pentagon's kitchen, he moves those about to hit the other X-Men so they miss and makes all the security guards punch out themselves or each other.

  • Grandpa Smedry of Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians and sequels presents an interesting twist, as part of his Smedry Talent: his Talent is being late; when somebody shoots a gun at him, he always arrives late for the bullets to hit him.
  • The Destroyer paperback series of novels and the movie based on them, Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins, states that Masters of the martial art of Sinanju are able to dodge bullets, among their many other abilities.
    • Further explored in later novels in the series, Remo discovers that a Sinanju master can 'punch' Civil War era muzzle-loader projectiles away. Master Chiun demonstrates this while kicking Remo in the chest simultaneously because why not?
  • In Discworld, in Men at Arms, Sergeant Colon enters the Tower of Art, having just heard somebody, and reasons, seeing nobody in the tower, that they are behind him. He dives right as the Gonne is fired. Afterwards he swears that he felt the shot pass over him. Discworld is based on Steampunk era technology, and the Gonne would not be as fast-firing as modern guns. Also, Sergeant Colon can spout a lot of shit sometimes.
  • The engineereds in Duumvirate dodge single aimed bullets easily, but have a harder time with things such as poorly-aimed AKs and shotguns.
  • Averted somewhat in The Ganymede Takeover by Philip K. Dick and Ray Nelson, in that the person being shot at is telepathic, and therefore knows when the shooter is about to pull the trigger.
  • In the Ghost in the Shell novel After the Long Goodbye, Batou can do this thanks to his cybernetic body and predictive software, but never for longer than five minutes at a time, which would cause serious damage to his body (it's the equivalent of red-lining a high-performance racing car).
  • In John D. MacDonald's The Girl, the Gold Watch, and Everything, the hero activates his magic pocket watch just as his adversary pulls the trigger. Not only can he easily get out of the bullet's way, he uses a ruler and his knowledge of the gun's normal-speed muzzle velocity to calculate just how much the pocket watch is slowing down time.
  • In Halo: Ghosts of Onyx, Kelly proves that dodging bullets is for sissies by dodging a Sentinel's laser blast. Then she flips it off.
  • Hyperion. When Kassad is given phase-shifting technology for the first time, he's astonished to realise he just dodged a laser beam.
  • In The Reckoners Trilogy the Epic Fortuity has precognitive abilities allowing him to see a short distance into the future as well as super reflexes which make him generally able to avoid getting shot. However David notes that he relies on knowing that he's about to get shot with his former power and using the latter to get out of the line of fire before the bullets are shot as super reflexes won't allow him to dodge automatic weapon fire.
  • In Theirs Not to Reason Why Ia parries not just bullets but lasers with her sword. Justified by her precognitive powers; she knows beforehand where the projectile is going to be, so she can put her sword in the way.
  • Warhammer 40,000 novels:
    • In the novel Grey Knights, Ligeia's death cultists dodge almost all the firepower thrown at them.
    • In the Blood Angels novel Deus Sanguinius, the daemon Malfallax dodges the rounds fired at him by the Space Marines. As a princeling of Tzeentch, Chaos god of fate, he has an ability that allows him to see where the rounds go and move appropriately; when the body part enabling this is damaged, he fares considerably worse at avoiding.
    • In the Ultramarines novel The Chapter's Due, Uriel Ventris and his fellow Space Marines open fire on a troupe of Slaaneshi swordsmen. After three consecutive volleys of massed bolter fire, only two of the swordsmen go down: the remaining fifteen dodged every single bolt round while casually strolling up to the Ultramarines.
    • Ciaphas Cain dodges incoming fire in just about every story. In Caves of Ice, he even manages to dodge a Necron gauss flayer. However, his combat instincts are so highly developed that he's usually able to start the dodge before the attacker actually fires.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Hicks from Alphas is able use his Super-Reflexes to get out of the way of a bullet. He realizes that the shooter is about to fire and drops to the ground before the trigger is squeezed. He follows this up with a feat of acrobatics right out of The Matrix which confuses the shooter and causes the second shot to miss as well.
  • Illyria from Angel could dodge bullets fired at point blank range by twirling gracefully.
  • Downplayed in Bionic Woman. Jaime reacts to a long-range sniper shot but not in time to save her fiancé. She pulls him out of the way of the second bullet but only because she had time to realise it was coming.
  • Likewise in Daredevil (2015). Matt Murdock hears a Dramatic Gun Cock with his superhearing which gives him barely enough time to shove Karen Page out of the line of fire while the intended target gets riddled with bullets.
  • The English (2022) features an unconventional realistic version in one scene where the protagonists are being targeted by a sniper. They're so far away that his black powder rifle's bullet takes a solid 2 seconds to reach them after leaving the barrel. After a while one of them notices this and, lacking cover, simply tells Emily Blunt's character to quickly move from her current position if she thinks she sees smoke from the sniper's lookout tower in the distance. This actually works and she's able to pull another character out of the way of a bullet that would have otherwise hit him.
  • Obviously, done fairly often in The Flash (2014). That said, the show is often guilty of making bullets extremely slow in the Bullet Time scenes to give the illusion of the protagonist running faster than he actually is. In this scene for example, the first shot fired still hasn't reached the target less than twenty feet away by the time Flash arrives, even though there's a more than two second gap between those events (in fact it's only covered about half the distance by then, putting the bullet's velocity at about a fit man's sprinting speed). Not only that but when the Flash's Bullet Time vision begins, the shooter visibly reacts with a head movement to him running by while the bullets appear frozen.
  • Game of Thrones: Theon dodges several arrows while fleeing his captors in "Walk of Punishment".
  • MacGyver (1985) does this at times. He dives between lines of bullets shot by a helicopter in the early season intros. He's blocked a crossbow bolt with a 2x2 board. Practically nobody who shoots at him can hit him — if they do, they graze him (and cause amnesia). It's played off as luck, though, rather than skill, and he has a healthy respect for people pointing guns at him.
  • Averted and busted by the MythBusters. While it is theoretically possible to dodge a .338 Lapua round in as close as 500 yards, it is not practical nor likely to happen with military grade rounds in a combat scenario. You can't see the muzzle flash from that far away, and the bullet will reach you before the sound of the shot. Specifically, Jamie managed to dodge the simulated bullet after it was fired given 0.49 seconds in a lab and 0.62 seconds outside in brighter lighting. In short: Super-Senses help a lot if you want to Dodge the Bullet, not just raw speed. Note also that 1. Jamie specifically had to dodge the bullet after it was fired, he couldn't "aim-dodge" as is so common in fiction, 2. he was an untrained sixty-year-old man; a young athletic one would be at least somewhat quicker, and 3. rifle rounds like the one simulated are about three times faster than most pistol/submachine gun rounds, but also 4. he was ready and knew he was going to get shot (obviously).
  • Ziva does this in an episode of NCIS, though what actually happens is she hears the gun being cocked and reacts to that.
  • The New Avengers: In "K is for Kill: Tiger by the Tail", Gambit is able to use his pistol to deflect the bullet a Russian assassin fires at him.
  • Parodied in The Office (US). Michael Scott's amateur film features his character dodging bullets from point blank range using some awkward and poorly choreographed poses.
  • In Person of Interest Root is eventually able to do this as part of her God Mode abilities courtesy of The Machine being able to predict the bullet paths and allow her to dodge.
  • Clark uses his Super-Speed to do this in an early episode of Smallville, unaware it wouldn't have actually hurt him. He has time to lean one way, then the other, and turn to watch the bullet go while everything's in slow-motion.
  • Star Trek
    • Star Trek: The Next Generation: Data can do this. Justified as he's an android with reflexes beyond human abilities and can move before the shot is fired.
    • Star Trek: Enterprise:
      • In the pilot episode, Captain Archer enters a room where time is distorted. When Silik fires a phaser at him, he just has to step aside to dodge the slow-moving energy beam.
      • The Augments dodge disruptor beams when seizing the Klingon Bird of Prey thanks to their genetically-enhanced reflexes.
    • Star Trek: Picard: Elnor was trained by a sect of Romulan warrior nuns called the Qowat Milat. With his tan qalanq (a Romulan sword), he can carve up multiple enemies with Ray Guns while dodging their attacks.
  • Cole uses hyper speed to do this in Tracker and then gets back in place behind the bullet track so he can still fall into the water and make the human who shot at him believe that the guy he’s impersonating is dead. It was Mel’s old boyfriend who got on the wrong side of The Mafia and got located by the guys trying to kill him.
  • Averted in Wonder Woman. She avoids gunshots not by dodging them but by letting them hit her... on her wrists which are covered by bullet-proof bracelets.

  • This happens a fair bit in Survival of the Fittest although considering that it is a roleplay and handlers are reluctant to allow their characters to die, it is only to be expected. The most ridiculous example happened with Clive Maxwell. He was shot at with an MP5 (a weapon which, mark you, fires around 13 rounds per second) and not only managed to push his 'friend' Liam Black aside but avoid getting hit at all by running around the shooter in a circle.

    Tabletop Games 
  • In Aberrant, Novas with at least two MegaDexterity can make Dodge rolls against gunfire even without cover. (Those with four MegaDexterity can make Block rolls to catch them.)
  • Chronicles of Darkness: By default, firearms ignore Defense, assuming that a normal human can't react quickly enough to make a difference against someone pulling a trigger. However:
    • Vampire: The Requiem: The vampires' power of Celerity grants Super-Speed and a Defense bonus that does apply against bullets, on the basis that it makes them too unnaturally fast to target.
    • Some of the shielding spells in Mage: The Awakening function in this way, depending on the type of magic. Fate-based shields make the caster just too lucky to hit, Time and Space distort their position just enough to avoid strikes, and Death and Forces slow bullets down enough to dodge.
    • In second edition Werewolf: The Forsaken werewolves can apply their defense against firearms as long as they're in one of their hybrid forms.
  • Dungeons & Dragons: 5th edition's modern firearms have a Burst Fire rule where they fill a 10' cube with bullets. Every target in the cube rolls a Dexterity throw and either takes damage equivalent to a normal attack or no damage at all.
  • Fudge Fu, for FUDGE, allows people to deflect lasers. This is with lasers that actually travel at the speed of light. And all they need is a little mirror, or even something along the lines of a very shiny spoon. Although it is intended to mimic crazy kung-fu movie action, and has more than a few other things which are just as ridiculous. Such as being able to walk across rapidly moving water.
  • In GURPS the ability of characters to dodge bullets is justified by the assumption that you're staying away from where the shooter is aimed. You usually need exotic or cinematic powers to raise it above 10 (50% chance) so it's best not to rely on it against guns. With the right advantages and the high skill levels you can deflect weapons that move faster than the speed of light because... you know.
  • Hero System has "Combat Luck" — Armor defined as "it just missed me, good thing I dodged" instead of the usual "it bounced off my skin/bulletproof vest/powered armor".
  • The Old World of Darkness has a Dodge skill that allows you to dodge bullets. The difficulty of the dodge depends on your available cover. If you've got good cover, it can be a 6, which is a standard difficulty. If there is no cover, you can still drop to the floor to avoid the bullets, which is difficulty 8, pretty challenging.
  • The Dodge technique allows you to attempt this in Psionics: The Next Stage in Human Evolution.
  • In Shadowrun, the firing character uses a dice pool that can't really go higher than around 15 (agility max. 6 plus firearms skill max. 6 plus aptitude 1 plus specialization 2) while the defender uses reaction (max. 6) plus dodge (max. 6) plus aptitude (1) for a dice pool of 13, which gives an almost even chance of dodging any shot. (you successfully dodge if you roll more 5's or 6's on your 13 dice than the other person does on his 15) That is for a single shot (and we should mention that with stat-boosting cyberware, bioware and magic the shooter's pool could actually be up around 18). Start using burst fire and your chance of hitting can be a lot better...
  • Avoided in Violence™: The Roleplaying Game of Egregious and Repulsive Bloodshed]] (a dark satire of RPGs), the rules explicitly disallow dodging bullets, pointing out that it's the kind of thing which only happens in John Woo movies.
  • In Warhammer 40,000, some models get an invulnerable save, which gives them a chance of ignoring being hit even by anti-tank weaponry, and normally is due to the model having a forcefield or being daemonic in nature. Imperial Assassins get one from their ability to dodge, leading to crazy situations where an assassin can survive being hit dead on by an orbital bombardment capable of leveling a city block by dodging it... without moving.

  • Older Than Steam: In Ben Jonson's 1598 play Every Man in His Humour a character claims to be able to teach another to deflect bullets with his sword. "Unless it be grapeshot, and spread."

    Video Games 
  • Brain Dead 13 combines this with Deadly Dodging in the final battle.
  • In City of Heroes, Scrappers and Stalkers had optional secondary abilities such as 'Super Reflexes'. (Not just them, but other archetypes' anti-bullet passive defenses are somewhat more likely to fall under No-Sell or Bullet Dodges You.) Once activated, many of these were automatically on and cost no endurance, meaning Stamina could be completely disregarded because if it doesn't hit you, you don't get hurt. (Also following this trope's logic, anything offensive which messes with a character's balance, stance or movement has a chance of shutting down these defenses until the character has the edurance, time and attention to "recenter" and reactivate them.)
    Project Mirage (player-character): "I'm not bulletproof. And I'm not invincible. I don't need to be."
  • Die Hard: Vendetta have John McClane dodging Piet, the Big Bad's bullet in their penultimate confrontation. Before Piet can fire another round, John's daughter Lucy comes up and puts another shot into Piet.
  • In Disco Elysium, the Detective can, a with a good Reaction Speed skill, handily pull this off during the Tribunal, at least when the disastrously drunk Ruud "The Killer" Hoenkloewen tries to take a shot at him with his BFG. This instance even sees the trope justified. The Visual Calculus skill notes that the only real reason why this trick could be pulled off is exactly because Hoenkloewen is extremely drunk, and drunk people have a tendency to overcorrect when taking aim against a moving target. It proves true just a few moments later when Raul Kortenaer fires a Last Breath Bullet at the Detective, which is impossible to dodge.
  • DUSK-12 have you playing as a Super-Soldier with Super-Speed as one of your powers. You can even perform a special move allowing the whole game to go Bullet Time - if your enemies are using firearms, you can walk between their bullets before going up to them for an execution.
  • Trying to shoot a Bonethief in Eternal Darkness can be a frustrating experience, as they'll casually lean out of the way of the bullet. However, if you wait until they attempt to jump at you, you'll be guaranteed a hit, though they won't be interrupted if the gun you use is a weak one.
  • The last confrontation against Sefar in Eternal Evil has Marcus firing shots at Sefar, only for the vampire to dodge all shots and grab Marcus instantly. Subverted when it turns out that's exactly what Marcus wants - to stab Sefar with the syringe containing the antidote that strips Sefar of all his powers, reducing the vampire into a weak heap on the floor.
  • EXTRAPOWER: Giant Fist Characters who can't fully block bullets can instead try to dodge them.
  • In the Final Fantasy VII OVA Last Order, Zack is shown easily dodging machine gun fire from multiple shooters and causing the shooters to hit each other.
  • Grand Theft Auto V does this with Michael De Santa's power, literally named "Bullet Time".
  • Besides of Jedi deflecting shots with a lightsaber, Jedi Academy features characters actually dodging energy blasts. Justified, more or less, in that they're relatively slow ones and almost everyone uses a burst of Force Speed to accomplish it. Jedi, Cultists and Reborn can do this, and it's also an almost undiscoverable power for the player character. Activating it takes something like standing still facing an enemy whose shots you can't block, which just doesn't seem like such a great idea. Of course, it's also within the realm of possibility to dodge blasts through the player's own reflexes. Boba Fett also dodges blaster shots, but not as reliably.
  • Honkai Impact 3rd: Every character who fights can dodge or deflect bullets. Kiana, Bronya, and Li Sushang have all reacted to automatic gunfire.
  • Non-Red Shirt Army blaster units in LEGO Star Wars have the ability to dodge enemies' beam shots while firing back at them.
  • In the roof-top level of The Matrix: Path of Neo you actually learn how to dodge bullets. It's even a critical part of the mission because you have to distract the Agent until you can get rid of it.
  • Max Payne has bullet time as a key gameplay mechanic, conceptualizing the idea before even the Matrix movies.
  • Because of the way that the mechanics of the game were designed, you can easily dodge two of the most powerful weapons in the early MechWarrior 2 engine: the PPC and the Gauss rifle fired powerful projectiles with a visibly slower than normal travel time (substantially less than missiles, notably), and thus could be easily sidestepped by use of jump jets, or just throttling up and darting to one side in a sufficiently light enough machine.
  • The player character can do this in Mercenaries 2: World In Flames, but without the help of superpowers, or even Badass Normality; the bullets are just that freakin' slow.
  • Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty:
    • Vamp can predict a bullet's trajectory by watching his opponents' muscles, and dodge out of the way.
    • Mantis can do the same, but by reading minds instead of muscles. There's also the possibility that the Mantis you're shooting at is just a mental illusion, and the real one has simply stopped your brain from seeing him.
    • Grey Fox also has a form of this in his ability to deflect bullets with his sword, thanks to impossibly-fast reflexes.
    • Fortune doesn't even dodge. She just stands there and the bullets miss her. In other words, her power is to cause Stormtrooper Marksmanship. this is mostly thanks to a device the Patriots secretly gave her, capable of deflecting bullets and making explosives inert. However, when a salvo of missiles is fired against her and the heroes, she makes the missiles steer away with no apparent reason, before dying from a previous wound.
    • After Raiden Took a Level in Badass, he learned to deflect bullets with his sword as well. With the Scene expansion for Metal Gear Online, players lucky enough to use Raiden can do the same by holding his sword at the ready. It deflects all bullets incoming from the front.
    • Gene from Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops does this through actual Super-Speed.
    • Also, the GRU soldiers during the Ocelot duel. Go ahead, try using the shotgun. Or the Patriot. It won't get you anywhere.
  • In Metroid: Other M, Samus can do this with her new 'Sense Move' ability.
  • Faith, the Runner protagonist of Mirror's Edge seems to be able to dodge bullets even when facing More Dakka from a helicopter gunship. Either that or the police were all trained at the Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy.
  • Beam katana wielders in the No More Heroes series can deflect bullets with more ease than Jedi and Sith can deflect blaster shots. The only drawback is that it drains the battery.
  • One of the armor stats in PAYDAY 2 is "Dodge". It's meant to reflect your ability to dodge bullets, but in practice it's a percent chance that you'll take no damage when a bullet hits you. Lighter armors have more Dodge, and certain skills and perks also buff it.
  • Akihiko does this at the beginning of his story in Persona 4: Arena. His Internal Monologue uses the old "watch the arm then jump out of the way before trigger is pulled" hand wave and even then, he admits that this is only possible because the would-be shooter is slow and clumsy, causing him to telegraph his shots well in advance of actually pulling the trigger.
  • Nathan Frost from Project: Snowblind has a reflex augmentation which lets him "dance through the enemy's bullets". He still gets hit a fair amount if you try, though. He also has an augmentation which allows him to become Immune to Bullets (and rockets, and grenades, and lasers...)
  • Several higher-level mooks and bosses will dodge your bullets in Red Steel II if you randomly fire at them. No such luck for you, though...
  • Albert Wesker in Resident Evil has superhuman senses, strength, and reflexes thanks to his Only Mostly Dead Gambit Roulette from the first game, but it's jacked up to ridiculous levels in RE5 when he sidesteps bullets so fast that you can't even see him moving. He even dodges rocket-propelled grenades in the first part of your fight with him, and a major part of that Boss Battle is figuring out a way to slow him enough down to hit him. Even then, you can never score a direct strike, he catches the RPG out of midair and you're forced to blow it up in his hands. It is possible to actually hit Wesker with bullets. You just have to kill the lights, wait for him to lose sight of you, and shoot him while his back is turned. But after the first couple of hits he'll start dodging again.
  • A primary game mechanic in Superhot; time only moves when the player does, giving the player plenty of opportunity to notice a bullet and step out of its path.
  • Most Super Robot Wars depict units dodging bullets by moving like this. The "Alert" seishin allows you to have 100% chance to dodge anything from Macross Missile Massacre to Wave-Motion Gun. Even without Alert, gigantic units like battleships can still dodge salvos of bullets with ease as long as the odd's right.
  • In Team Fortress 2, the Scout can use Bonk! radioactive energy drink to dodge bullets, rocket explosions, and strangely, flamethrower fire, for a few seconds. Even though he doesn't take damage, sentry gun fire still knocks him back, and he can still have Huntsman arrows embedded in him. "Didn't hurt!"
  • In Touken Ranbu, all swords can dodge projectiles during night battles, but kiwame tantō are the only ones able to do so during daytime.
  • Viewtiful Joe can do this too whenever he uses the Slow VFX power, but Joe can also punch bullets andtank shells and send them right back at the person that fired them.
  • With a sufficiently fast tank/ship and sufficiently slow shells (usually either fired in a high arc or from a howitzer type gun), it is possible to dodge enemy fire in both World of Tanks and Worldof Warships.

    Web Animation 
  • DSBT InsaniT: Whitney does this using her Jet Pack against ???'s Mecha-Mooks.
    Killdra: Did you SERIOUSLY dodge a volley of machine gun fire?
  • Happens all the time in Madness Combat. The main characters are rarely, if ever, hit, and even then, it's usually because an enemy has sneaked up on them.
  • RWBY: Dodging and reacting to bullets is something every relevant character can do. One example occurs during the doubles round of the Vytal tournament. Emerald separates Coco from Yatsuhashi and drags her into the forest biome where she proceeds to take potshots, forcing Coco to dodge them. Unfortunately, Coco's luck doesn't last and she's quickly knocked out.


    Web Original 
  • Contessa of Worm dodges bullets in a somewhat less traditional sense with her Combat Clairvoyance. She's physically a normal human, but her power lets her know exactly how to accomplish any task she wants, such as winning a fight. As a result, she knows how to avoid bullets before they're even fired.

    Western Animation 
  • Batman: The Animated Series: In one episode, after Bruce is doused with anti-fear gas, he stands at near point blank range dodging bullets as they're fired just to show off. Though Robin is right to think Batman is pushing his luck, he comes out unscathed somehow.

    Real Life 
  • Most modern-era small arms fire bullets somewhere between 1000 and 3000 feet per second (300 to 900 meters per second), and the vast majority of shootings (in nonmilitary contexts) are done at ranges under 10 yards. For all intents and purposes, when someone is shooting at you, they've either missed or hit by the time their finger pulls the trigger.
  • In many cases, soldiers and other people involved in close combat survived by running away from the shooter — the quicker you open the range, the worse the other guy's accuracy gets. Most gunmen are not Olympic shooters and handguns are vulnerable to the slightest tilt sideways. Enough to hit at 10 yards, miss at 20 yards, fire randomly in the bushes at 50. It works much worse when the other guy fires a rifle, or a salvo from an automatic weapon.
  • There used to be an old naval trick of steering into the splashes made by a salvo knowing that when the enemy gunnery officer corrected the next salvo would land elsewhere. He might know the trick too... Matt Helm (in the novels by Donald Hamilton) has done this a couple times in speedboats to avoid snipers.
  • If you're sufficiently far away from the shooter, it is possible to dodge an airborne paintball. The fact they're large, brightly colored and relatively slow moving (compared to actual bullets) makes it possible — although still very hard.
  • Nerf darts travel VERY slowly compared to actual bullets, paintballs, or airsoft pellets. If you're paying attention to your shooter, you really can't get hit by a Nerf dart at any sort of range.note 
  • Sufficiently lower powered airsoft guns (especially those firing light plastic pellets) can often be slow enough to both be seen and dodged.
  • In his memoir a Russian artillery officer described how he managed to dodge a shot from a Panther tank's main gun. He was observing it through his observation telescope at the time and it fired from half a mile away. He saw the puff of smoke and hurled himself and his assistant into the bottom of the trench. He later calculated that he had just half a second between seeing it fired and the shell arriving.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Bullet Dodging, Bullet Dodge


Lucy dodges the bullets

Lucy manages to dodge the bullets the so-called "police" shoot, before stopping to break the fourth wall (which is not seen in this video example).

How well does it match the trope?

5 (5 votes)

Example of:

Main / DodgeTheBullet

Media sources: