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Laser-Guided Karma

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"Ow! The bitter pain of karmic justice!"
Lunella/Moon Girl, Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur (2023)

While in Real Life there is rarely a direct and easily traced cause-and-effect relationship between Bob's actions and their subsequent reward or punishment, in fiction the connection is usually a lot more... express. Did Bob help an old lady across the street? Several chapters later, she'll turn out to be an elite ex-commando who will gladly help him storm the Big Bad's castle. Did the Big Bad kick the little dog just because it was barking at him? The dog will sniff him out and lead the heroes right to his Supervillain Lair.

The Golden Rule states, Do unto others as you would have them do unto you, but in fiction, morality operates more on Newton's Third Law — Every action results in an equal and opposite reaction. Abuse others, and the cosmos will heap that same abuse on you. Accordingly, every notable act of a fictional character will yield its due return before the end of the story; every deed, good or bad, will be repaid with the accuracy of a laser-guided missile. Whether its payload is sunshine and puppies (see Earn Your Happy Ending) or painful irony depends on whether Bob was a saint or a bastard.

This is a common trope for works containing An Aesop about morality. But if taken too far, the story will turn unbearably anvilicious: be polite to strangers, never kick puppies, et cetera, or the universe itself will make your life a living hell. It also undermines the standard "do good for goodness' sake" lesson, since Bob never has to suffer for doing the right thing or accept virtue as its own reward — in Fictionland he will always get repaid. That being said, the negative consequences tend to fall more directly than the positive; the villain's own deeds will be the ultimate cause of his downfall, while the hero's merits win him some much-needed assistance but do not provide a Deus ex Machina that solves all his problems for him.

On the good side of the karma coin:

On the bad side of the karma coin:

See also Pay Evil unto Evil, Sweet and Sour Grapes, and Sexual Karma, especially Karmic Rape. Ironic Hell is the afterlife version of this. Contrast Karma Houdini and Karma Houdini Warranty. For karma punishing a hero for their mistakes, see Tragic Mistake. Also contrast with "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished", which is a corrupt form of this trope; as well as Can't Get Away with Nuthin', where the slightest misdeed committed by the hero results in Disproportionate Retribution. If the character is a jerkass and the karma isn't enough to make them learn, then it's a Karmic Butt-Monkey.

When you help someone but receive punishment rather than reward, you might be looking at The Farmer and the Viper.

See also: Hoist by His Own Petard, when a villain gets killed by their own weapon, or The Dog Bites Back, when they're killed by an abused lackey. Compare Hellistics, when unrelated events turn out to be connected with each other just to screw over the character(s).

For sake of trope differentiation, examples should be limited to bad karma, heroic or villainous, and when an opponent's "good karma" combines to double-wham the antagonist.

Since in Real Life, whether a bad thing that happened to someone had been karma or not is inherently controversial and subjective, No Real Life Examples, Please!

This trope is by its nature Spoileriffic; spoilers will be unmarked.


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  • Front Row Joe: In the holiday trailer, Clyde puts dynamite into a gift box and gives it to Joe, intending to blow him up. Joe gives Clyde movie tickets as a gift. Clyde is so moved by this gesture that he takes the gift box back... and gives it to Elton. Elton opens the box to find popcorn and drinks. Confused, Clyde takes the box and looks into it. The dynamite immediately explodes in his face.

  • The White Witch of Rose Hall: The titular witch, a torturous, Black Widow slave-owner, had her death come during a slave uprising, at the hand of either a lover or vengeance-seeker.
  • The Korean folk tale of Heungbu and Nolbu, which originated in a popular play that explicitly taught the concept of karma to popular audiences, revolves around this trope. Working-Class Heronote  Heungbu, who was forced to live in a small hovel with his family by his wealthy, but evil brother Nolbu, discovers an injured swallow and nurses it back to health. Afterwards, the bird flies away and returns with magical gourd seeds that contain treasures, a mansion and servants. When Nolbu finds out about it, he finds a swallow and breaks its leg to nurse it back to health, expecting the bird to reward him as it did Heungbu. The bird comes back with gourd seeds... which contain all sorts of nasty demons, who proceed to ransack Nolbu's palace, leaving him with nothing. (In some modern versions of the story, Nolbu learns his lesson from that ordeal and lives Happily Ever After in with Heungbu, who more than gladly takes him in.)

  • The Bloodhound Gang's "I Hope You Die" starts with a guy Flipping the Bird to another guy, who cuts the first guy off and causes him to crash, killing scores of innocent victims. When the first guy goes to prison and has to share a cell with an insane cellmate who rapes him and forces him to wear a wedding dress while Bound and Gagged, the prison guard refuses to come to help... because he's the guy he flipped the bird the other day.
  • The whole idea of Johnny Cash's "God's Gonna Cut You Down". If you're a sinner, God is pissed and He's coming for you. It doesn't matter how long or how far you run, you will get the judgment you deserve.
  • The Grayson DeWolfe song "Karma" is sung from the perspective of a man who learns that his ex-girlfriend, after cheating on him, ended up discovering that her new boyfriend is cheating on her with someone else.
  • The Lonely Island's "Threw It On The Ground" has the narrator angrily throwing various objects on the ground for all kinds of immature reasons. This comes to a head when he goes to a restaurant and flips the table of "two Hollywood phonies", accusing them of trying to give him an unsolicited autograph when they were just minding their own business; said "phonies" tackle him to the ground and tase him in the ass for his efforts. In other words, Taser-Guided Karma.
  • In the Gary Moore song "Over the Hills and Far Away", the subject of the song is accused of a robbery where his pistol had been found. Unfortunately for him when the robbery was occurring he was sleeping with his best friends wife and so cannot provide an alibi without exposing the affair. This leads to him getting sent down for ten years. One theory is that his friend saw him and his wife together and staged the robbery with his pistol to frame him in revenge. Regardless his illicit affair led to his incarceration making it an example of the trope.
  • Willie Nelson: "A Little Ol'-Fashioned Karma". In this 1983 song, he keeps it simple with a former lover who had done him wrong: There'll be "A little bit of sowing and a little bit of reaping / A little bit of laughing and a little bit of weeping", and "If you're gonna dance you've gotta pay the band".
  • In Queen of the Wave by Pepe Deluxé, it's strongly implied that Atlantis was destroyed because of the moral failure of its citizens: both "Grave Prophecy" (in which Atlantis's destruction is foretold) and "Riders of the First Ark" (in which the destruction happens) prominently mention The Book of Laws being "forgotten". An even more direct example is when Zailm begins an adulterous affair with Lolix: "The nemesis of Karma starts pursuing him. A pursuit that will eventually lead to the deaths of both Zailm and Lolix..."
  • This is the theme of the main story of the Sublime song "Date Rape". First, a guy attempts to drug a girl and rape her. However, the girl wises up to the man's plan and files a police report. The guy then gets sent to prison, where he is anally raped by a fellow prisoner.

    Myths & Religion 
  • The Bible:
    • The "Eye for an Eye" law established by Moses can be interpreted as applying this directly to real life.
    • In the New Testament, Acts 12 (21-23) (NIV);
      On the appointed day, Herod, wearing his royal robes, sat on his throne and delivered a public address to the people. They shouted "This is the voice of a god, not of a man." Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died.
    • In Matthew 7 (1-2) (NIV), Jesus warns, "Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."
    • God's justice is described as this in Galatians 6:7 (KJV): "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that he shall also reap."
    • The Bible also hints in a few places that Heaven and Hell reward and punish proportionally, though exactly how the rewards and punishments are proportioned is not explained.
  • Some might say it's subverted in Greek Mythology because most times karma is just the gods helping or messing with the heroes, but the fact is that the heroes' good or bad actions have consequences, and the gods represent universal forces, so this is still technically true. Here are some examples:
    • Achilles's profanation of Apollo's temple leads to his death by Paris, who is a servant of Apollo.
    • Depending on the version, Apollo curses Cassandra that her prophecies may never be believed because she lied to him to get her power in the first place. In some versions, though, it was just because she rejected his sexual advances.
    • The Odyssey:
      • Odysseus blinding Polyphemus is what incites Poseidon to curse him, setting the stage for the whole story. On the other hand, Odysseus only put out Polyphemus's eye because the cyclops meant to eat him, so they were kind of holding each others' lasers. Odysseus's tribulations are as much because of hubris as anything else because he would have gotten away with blinding Polyphemus if he hadn't decided to boast by shouting his real name at the monster as he left. Polyphemus initially offered to feast with Odysseus instead of on Odysseus in his honor for his cunning; it was only after Odysseus cursed him that Polyphemus cursed him back.
      • The greed of Odysseus's crew leads to Aeolus's gift blowing them off course.
      • The plunder at Ismaros is rewarded by storms that blow the crew off course. And by an attack from the natives that butchers a lot of Odysseus's men.
    • The vast majority of Greek kings and leaders end up reaping the karmic rewards for massacring the Trojans that attempt to seek sanctuary in the temples of the gods.
    • Jason's efforts to dump his lawful wife Medea (who had allowed the Argonauts to escape the land of her father Aeetes) for another woman costs him Hera's favor and leads to his disgrace and eventual death.
    • Ixion first murders his father-in-law, flees to Mount Olympus to escape punishment, and repays Zeus's hospitality by attempting to rape Hera (and only sort of succeeds; he rapes a cloud nymph in the form of Hera from which the centaurs are born). An infuriated Zeus banished him to Hades, where he's strapped to a flaming wheel and left to spin around for the rest of eternity.
    • Ixion's son Peirithoos is just as bad, convincing Theseus to sneak down with him into Hades and kidnap Persephone to be his bride. Needless to say, Hades is not amused. When Heracles comes down to the Underworld on the last of his Twelve Labours, he's allowed to free Theseus from Hades's captivity. The Underworld shakes when he tries to free Peirithoos, which is Hades's way of letting our hero know that this is a very bad idea.
    • Tantalus was a king who tried to steal some ambrosia from the gods. They found out and banished him from Olympus. He invited them to a feast at his home to "try to make it up to them"; he killed his children and fed them to the gods to prove that they weren't all-knowing as revenge for being banished. They found out about that, too (they are gods, after all) and now he's in the Fields Of Punishment. He's standing in a lake under a fruit tree, and he's starving. Every time he tries to eat or drink, the food/liquid moves away from him.
    • Sisyphus's attempts to cheat death (and by extension Hades) ended in failure and got him stuck pushing a boulder up a mountain for eternity.
    • Though they are the main forces of karma in Greek myth, not even the Olympians themselves escape karmic retribution for some of their particularly loathsome actions.
    • Even before the Olympians and mortals, the primordial gods and titans were not immune to karma. Ouranos threw the cyclopes and hecatoncheires into Tartarus for how ugly they were. In anger, his wife Gaia made a golden sickle that she gave to Kronos, who rose up against Ouranos and killed him... but then Kronos was also repulsed by their appearance and left them in Tartarus. Later, when Zeus and the other Olympians found them and released them, it was easy to convince them to rise against Kronos. The cyclopes made powerful magic items for Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades which helped them beat Kronos's army, then when the titans were thrown into Tartarus themselves it is none other than the hecatoncheires who now make sure they can't escape.

  • The Adventure Zone: Balance experienced a brief break from the Dungeons & Dragons formula during the Stolen Century-arc. When the new arc begins, the D&D-ruleset returns with Merle and Taako having to make saving throws. Clint (Merle) immediately rolls a 2. Justin (Taako) starts making fun of him... and then also rolls a 2.
  • Cool Kids Table:
    • At the end of the game All I Want for Christmas, Jed the toy collector is forced to give up his entire toy collection as punishment for causing chaos in an attempt to get a Turboman toy.
    • At the end of the fourth arc of The Fallen Gods, a Tower full of Wizards who enslaved dozens of merfolk end up getting torn apart by them as soon as the spell is broken.

  • When Kix Brooks (formerly of Brooks & Dunn) took over as host of American Country Countdown, he cut the show from 40 positions to 30 after program directors complained about the unfamiliarity of the lower-charting songs. In 2012, Brooks released "New to This Town", his first solo single since the breakup of Brooks & Dunn. Where did it peak? #31.

    Tabletop Games 
  • During the backstory of the New World of Darkness game Asylum, Psycho Psychologist Dr. Moorcock conducted over five hundred unnecessary lobotomies over the course of his career, killing fourteen; in one particularly egregious case, he even went so far as to perform the procedure on Allison Purchase — who was not only perfectly sane but had only ended up at the asylum due to a bad LSD trip. Naturally, Moorcock's tenure comes to an end when someone decided to lobotomize him, leaving the doctor a gibbering, barely functional ruin of a human being. The game books suggest two possibilities: either Moorcock was silencing witnesses on behalf of a third party, and said third party decided that He Knows Too Much... or Allison managed to recover just enough to take ironic revenge.
  • Instant Karma is an optional game mechanic in GURPS: Thaumatology that can strike people who use ritual magic to harm others.
  • Magic: The Gathering has It That Betrays, a card that makes any card your opponent sacrifices yours. It also makes your opponent sacrifice two cards each time it attacks. Given that Eldrazi (the creature type It That Betrays is a member of) cause people to sacrifice permanents, this is more like Laser-Guided Theft.
  • In Traveller, judicial slavery is sometimes used as an alternative to capital punishment in the Sword Worlds. If this is interpreted to imply that this is the penalty for human trafficking, which seems likely, then the poetic justice of this is rather grimly amusing.

  • In Twice Charmed, Lady Tremaine tries to summon her Wicked Fairy Godfather, Franco DiFortunato, to wreak havoc at the ball. But since they failed to separate Cinderella and Prince Charming, the Tremaines are forced to do Franco's chores for eternity.

    Theme Parks 

    Visual Novels 
  • The Eden of Grisaia: It was series villain Heath Oslo who taught the basics of knife combat to protagonist Yuuji, as well as the fact that anything with a sharp point can be used as a deadly weapon. It's a method that Yuuji used often when he was still a brainwashed child soldier/assassin of Oslo, killing several of his targets with a ballpoint pen. At the climactic confrontation of the two at the end of the novel, Yuuji puts this knowledge to good use when killing Oslo, by stabbing him in the eye with a ballpoint pen.
  • Averted much more often than not in Katawa Shoujo (which is interesting in itself, because even good Visual Novels tend to invoke this trope way too often), but there are still a few examples.
    • Act 1's bad ending and Lilly's entire path are this. Following Lilly's path, Hisao manages to pull a good end only if he was completely open to Lilly on three separate occasions during the story - and his way of doing so isn't related to any of those occasions.
    • An interesting variation in Shizune's story, where a single bad act (which can be a romance-ruiner in itself so very much) committed by Hisao doesn't, in fact, have any direct grave consequences, but another practically unrelated chain of events appears and eventually leads to a bad ending.
  • In Spirit Hunter: NG, Masaru offered up the Momoi Department people as sacrifices to summon Tsukuyomi and have it grant his wish. When he died along with them, he became Tsukuyomi itself, forced to live a life of torment until Akira and co. take care of him.

    Web Comics 
  • Blip:
    • One guy trying to slip some roofies to a succubus ends up getting drained by her.
    • The children at Hester's summer camp could have saved themselves some future therapy bills and mental trauma had they been actually nice to Hester. As it stands, their hazing of the red-headed witch is directly linked to their terrorizing by a vampire.
  • In Dead Winter, Arlen insists on kicking Liz, Alice, Monday, and Lou out of his shelter (in the middle of a Zombie Apocalypse)—and as if that wasn't dickish enough, he also steals the keys to Lou's van. Then the hitman Sixgun comes looking for Monday, and the van out front convinces him that Monday is inside the shelter. Arlen attempts to bar Sixgun's entrance, and just gets shot.
  • A Loonatic's Tale: Not a villainous example, but certainly notable: Dr. Chester is mean to everyone, and the degree to which he is mean is in inverse proportion to how much they need someone to be nice to them (so to his bosses, he's merely surly, but to Dr. Qubert or his own patients, he's actively derisive and hostile). As a result nothing ever goes his way — machines won't work, his bosses wonder why they hired his useless butt, and his coworkers have nothing nice to say either to or about him.
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • After conquering the hometown of the paladins, Redcloak loses his eye to a paladin that he had tortured in order to gain information about a plan for which he had, in Start of Darkness, murdered his own brother, who himself had lost an eye to a paladin of the same order who helped conquer Redcloak's hometown. It's like a karma palindrome. For bonus points, it's the other eye! And afterwards, when Xykon's phylactery is falling, it bounces off the statue of Redcloak, hitting the same eye he lost! For double bonus points, Redcloak, as a cleric, has access to the Regenerate spell that would let him get the eyeball back... but Xykon forbids him from ever using it so that he'll always have a reminder of his failure.
    • In the first fight with the Linear Guild, the guild disables the cleric and moments later loses their own. Roy even says, "I think karma just evened that score."
    • From the same fight, Nale falling off the bridge that he ordered destroyed. And lampshaded again with "Karma-riffic!"
    • Vaarsuvius unleashes a spell called Familicide that wipes out an enormous number of black dragons and their descendants. Turns out the Draketooth clan that guards one of the gates is descended from a black dragon, wiping out the clan and leaving the gate unguarded.
  • In Sluggy Freelance the exact moment Cloney tries to bite off Aylee's head, Torg chops Cloney's head right off.
  • Unordinary: Sera views this as something that happened to herself. By remaining ignorant to those around her when she was the school's powerful Ace, karma came back to bite her in the ass when the Wellston mid-tiers she's been ignoring and possibly harming decide to kidnap and beat her up after she's been depowered.
  • In Urban Underbrush:
  • Weak Hero:
    • Gray's a fan of taking down his opponents in ways that are based off their own bullying techniques:
      • Teddy starts off his bullying of Gray by dumping cola on him, dunking his schoolbag into water, and marking his back with a giant black X. When Gray retaliates, he does so by soaking Teddy's prized backpack in the rain, knocking him out with a cola can, and then topping off with the X across his back.
      • When taking down Oswald's gang after they hospitalise Stephen, Gray makes use of the safety pin Stephen gifted him to restrain Oswald, and then wraps them all up in the tape that Stephen used to use, and which got him made fun of by the gang.
    • After all the bullying he's already done, Jeongmu tops things off by tricking members of the Manwol Gang into fighting Gerard for him, claiming that Gerard's a member of the Yeungdeungpo Union. Gerard takes them down and then beats Jeongmu into a pulp. After he leaves, the Manwol members realise that Jeongmu duped them, and that Gerard doesn't even know what the Union is- the last we see of Jeongmu is his face screwed up in terror as he receives his second ass-beating, this time by the gang members that he tried to trick.
  • In WTF Comics, Nikisha (a Dark Elf Dark Action Girl working as an assassin for the villains) helps an imprisoned child she was supposed to be guarding escape. The same child promptly acts as a Character Witness and prevents the heroes from killing her. That is not enough; the Big Good happens to meet her shortly after and gives her advice on how to protect herself from the Big Bad. Karmariffic, indeed.
  • In this Pokémon fan-comic, two archaeologists investigate a temple, but one kills the other so he can claim the sole credit for the discovery. The dead archaeologist comes back to life as a Yamask and eventually evolves into a Cofagrigus. Some time later, the murderer is investigating another temple and notices a trail of gold nuggets, which he follows, only to be caught by the Cofagrigus, who traps him inside her coffin-shaped body and seals his fate.

    Web Original 
  • Achievement Hunter:
    • In the Let's Play of Far Cry 3, a lot of the gang gets hit with this constantly. Incidents include Jack getting ran over by a truck twice after he reveals that he refused to help Ray with being attacked by a dog, Ray getting attacked by a dog for taunting Jack over being run over by the truck, and Michael getting attacked by a dog when he says that the dogs were attacking him because he was Puerto Rican.
    • In the Let's Play Grand Theft Auto V series, Ryan enjoys being a dick and trying to mow down everyone during certain events (especially the Heist episodes). Karma will usually come back and bite him hard.
    • A particularly poignant example is in their Let's Play of "Bidiots". Jeremy, already lined up to make a modest profit on one of his drawings but looking to make a couple extra bucks, bids up his own drawing then sneakily tries to use a Screw to force someone else to outbid him. This would have worked finenote  if the person he chose to Screw hadn't been Gavin, who had already been Screwed into purchasing several other drawings already, leaving him nearly broke and unable to top Jeremy's bid, invalidating the Screw. As a result, Jeremy's Screw is thrown out and, with no one lifting a finger to bail him out, Jeremy is forced to buy his own artwork for an exorbitant amount while also forfeiting his artist's commission for the drawing.
    • In their Let's Play Minecraft videos, this is present all the time. One example is Episode 9, where the crew must build the Tower of Pimps, which consists of three blocks of gold. Gavin is the first to place a piece of the tower and is in the lead since no one else has placed a piece or is even close to making their first one. After dying and losing his map, he decides to kill Michael, then Ray, but neither of them had any maps. So he then decides to attack Geoff... who proceeds to kick Gavin's ass in real life, and then, for good measure, steals the gold Gavin was carrying with him. Gavin continues to mine for materials (and gold) to renew his attack Geoff, only to die each time and lose more gold he had mined, inadvertently giving Geoff the win. Which is then Lampshaded by Geoff.
    • There was also the time where AH and Fun Haus played a few rounds of Smite, with FH not realizing that AH swapped out their usual team in favor of their more video game-competent "B Team", creaming them. In response, when they came back to play Overwatch, FH brought in Cloud 9, a professional e-sports team. The Curb-Stomp Battle was so bad, Geoff Ramsay had to call in his daughter Millie to save face!
  • In the Bad Call TV episode "What's in a Name?", both of the executives that oppose changing the name of Ayds Candy in light of the growing AIDS crisis wind up dying of AIDS.
  • Battle for Dream Island: Pencil's downfall in "Reveal Novum". After 6 episodes of being a complete Jerkass, Pencil still hasn't been booted from the game, because she is rarely up for elimination. In the episode, she wins the challenge, triumphing over such threatening enemies as Rocky and David... Then, because of the double-digit point system, she falls to the bottom of the scoreboard and finally gets ejected from the game.
  • Bitey is usually the victim of this in the Brackenwood series. This is mostly because he keeps being a total Jerkass to the many peaceful animals of Brackenwood. However in a twist, in "The Last of the Dashkin", it's revealed that some of those sweet little animals may be just as deserving of that karma as Bitey.
  • The British Railway Stories: In episode 2, "Veto A V2", Sir Ralph Wedgewood is very vocal about his dislike of Herbert the LNER Class V2 locomotive because he's a mixed-traffic engine. At the end of the episode, Sir Ralph breaks down at the station, and Herbert is called in to take his passenger train.
  • Dreamscape: After putting Keela in the hospital from going overboard during their fight in the tournament, Vampire Lord is subject to a mauling by Anjren's pet polar bear as payback.
  • In one D&D story, described in the "Barbarians: The true masters of the Mind" demotivator image, a barbarian ended up dying, with a psion character mocking him by stating this is why he kills with his brain: to not get killed back. Since the barbarian had Diehard, he decided to kill the monster who gravely injured him by throwing his brain at it. He missed and ended up hitting a psion, inflicting huge amount of damage to him, killing him in process.
    Psion player: ...You killed me.
    Barbarian player: [nods] With my brain.
    [Everybody is in Stunned Silence, then they all, minus the psion player, burst into laughter]
    Psion player: I! HATE! YOU! SO! MUCH!
  • In Noob, Omega Zell, in addition to being a misogynist with three female guildmates, also has quite a few cruel words for Sparadrap. Guess what happens when he gets into his dream guild through the back door, hence angering its female recruiter, teams up with the recruiter in question, and pretty much ends up being The Load.
  • While she's too oblivious to see it as such, The Nostalgia Chick has gotten her disregard for the privacy of others thrown back at her a few times, like Obscurus Lupa hiding in her bed or Nella popping up next to her out of nowhere.
  • The Runaway Guys:
    • The Runaway Guys are struck by this in episode 8 of New Super Mario Bros. Wii when ProtonJon is attempting to guide the others through the fortress, and JoshJepson decides to have a little fun...
    • They have another occurrence in their very first project, the classic Mario Party for Nintendo 64. Towards the end of the first part of Luigi's Engine Room, when Jon gets a Poison Mushroom, Chugga chimes in with this:
      Chugga: Hey, Jon. Hey, Jon. Don't eat the mushroom.
      Jon: ...I hate your face.
      [Chugga laughs, NCS groans]
      NCS: Man, talk about perfect timing!
      Chugga: I was saving that joke!
      Jon: I like how you scripted jokes for— to say—
      Chugga: Well, I just thought of it on the plane!
      Jon: You thought of it on the wa— You literally have thought of this for days! You've been waiting days to make a "Don't eat the mushroom" reference!
      Chugga: Well, I guess I knew it would bug you! I knew it would bug you, that's why I did it.
    One turn later, Chugga gets a Warp Block, switches places with Jon, and also gets a poison mushroom. NCS bursts out laughing while, naturally, Jon remarks with a mocking tone.
    Jon: Hey, Chugga! Don't eat the mushroom! I hear it's bad for you!
    • Another one that originated in Mario Party: Emile, after winning Bowser's Magma Mountain by beating AI Wario for the Coin Star 112 to 111, says "Suck it, Slim.", then references Slim losing to AI Mario at Sweet Dream in his Mario Party 5 LP 179 to 178 for the Mini-Game Star. It took until Toy Dream of the Guys' own LP of 5 for karma to strike: Mario, who Jon had played as in Parties 1 and 2 before switching to Waluigi on his debut in 3, beats Emile, now playing as Daisy thanks to multiple innuendos from a Mario Party 6 livestream and Donkey Kong's shift to an NPC role, for the Mini-Game Star 107 to 106.
      • Part of what helped Emile get that 112-to-111 win at Bowser's Magma Mountain was a Jon-triggered Chance Time where Jon gave two of Wario's Stars to Emile. AI Luigi would give two of Emile's Stars to Jon at Woody Woods in Mario Party 3 through Chance Time.
        Jon: There is a god.
      • And speaking of Mario Party 3, Emile uses a Plunder Chest to steal Jon's Koopa Kard at Creepy Cavern... which he then proceeds to waste. The next map, Waluigi's Island, Jon gets him back with a Plunder Chest of his own for a "rude awakening".
        Jon: Remember when i said i had an insurance policy?
        Emile: OH FRICK!!!!!!!!!!!!
    • Another moment occurs in their playthrough of Kirbys Return To Dreamland. Early on in one of the final levels, Chugga and NCS are trapped on a collapsing bridge and end up falling. NCS dies and loses a life, but Chuuga just barely manages to fly back up in time. Even though Chugga is playing Kirby and him dying would force all three to restart the level, Jon starts getting exceptionally trollish and is upset that Chugga survived, wishing that he'd also fallen to his death while making a Dead Artists Are Better joke, all to Chugga's annoyance. Immediately after this happens, Jon flies too low and crashes into a platform made of lava, causing him to fall to his death.
  • RWBY:
    • Cinder Fall wishes for nothing but to be strong, feared, and powerful, and appears to gain that by becoming the Fall Maiden and instigating the fall of Beacon Tower and Ozpin. After she is wounded at the conclusion of the Beacon Arc, Salem forces her to stay close for healing, revealing that Cinder has a crippling weakness to Ruby Rose's power. Salem's other subordinates have no respect for her, view her as a failure and mock her injuries. Cinder didn't expect this outcome and resents it, having gone from strong, feared and powerful to weak, mocked, and protected.
    • By the time of Volume 7, Jacques Schnee's Lack of Empathy towards his workers and abusive behavior towards his wife and children eventually come back to haunt him. Weiss learns that Willow once set up cameras in every room in the manor if she ever needed evidence to protect her children's safety. That act inadvertently captures the meeting between Jacques and Arthur Watts, which uncovers Watts's scheme, Jacques's involvement, and the fact that the election result was rigged. Thus, Weiss arrests Jacques for treason.
  • RWBY Chibi: In "Happy BirthdayWeen", Ruby acts like everything should go her way and everyone should do what she wants because it's her birthday, up to and including forcing Team JNPR to give her their Halloween candy as a present and stealing an entire bowl of candy left out by Dr. Oobleck. By the end of the skit, the rest of Team RWBY has gotten sick of it; when Ruby tries to convince them to buy a Halloween costume for her, they dress her up as a trash can, complete with a sign saying "TRASH".
  • This happens fairly often with the gaming clan Shack Tactical, but the most direct and quickest case might be in one of their (many) ARMA sessions, "Being John Kevbovich". Dslyecxi, the founder of the clan, and Kevb0, one of the founding members, spot a lone enemy fleeing across an open field with no cover and no apparent support. The two of them (Kevb0 especially) gleefully take potshots at their enemy, pinning him down, wounding him, and eventually killing him. Afterwards Dslyecxi speculates about what could have made him so desperate that he would attempt such a suicidal maneuver in a realistic military simulator. Not two minutes later, Dslyecxi asks Kevb0 if they are sure that a building across a relatively short open field is clear of enemies, and Kevb0, who has a long and well deserved reputation for being a Fearless Fool and an all around Leeroy Jenkins (also, for always dying), immediately charges across the open field with no cover and no support to make sure the house is clear, much to Dslyecxi's dismay. Sure enough when they're almost to the house enemies start opening up on them from a distant tree line. Kevb0 gets killed, and while Dslyecxi makes it to the house, the enemy knows he's there and he's still cut off from reinforcements, who are a long way away. And that's where the video ends.
  • Back in 2008 during the midnight launch of Super Smash Bros. Brawl, ScrewAttack members Craig and Ben went to their local Gamestop to auction off an early copy of the game they had received, with the proceeds going to charity. At one point a customer in line for the game objected to having his face on camera and angrily ordered them to turn it off. (His face was edited out with a paper bag with a frowny face reading "I don't want my face on camera".) Eventually, he accused them of assault and called the cops. When they showed up and the guys gave their side of the story, the cops turned around and arrested the guy who called them.
  • Share My Story: Clara and Brandon both get hit with this:
    • Clara dumped, cheated on, and humiliated her boyfriend just to date this cool ladykiller, only for her to be cheated on and humiliated as well before they break up.
    • It is implied that the only reason Brandon wanted Clara in the first place was to spite the protagonist. After winning Clara over, they end up having a lot of problems in their relationship and it's implied that he was miserable with Clara for months and cheated on her constantly as a result.
  • In Soylent Scrooge, after making a meal of Marley's remains, Scrooge finds it gave him killer food poisoning.
  • Played for Laughs during the Steam Train playthrough of Organ Trail. Early on they sell one of their friends, "Cuat", into slavery for a bunch of fuel, and laugh about it. They all end up dying, about half-way through their journey, and realize Cuat, the friend they screwed over for some gas, is the only one who survived because of their betrayal.
  • Many episodes of SuperMarioLogan have Bowser Junior do something bad and try to cover it up, only to fail miserably. One notable example is in the episode "Bowser Junior's Clown Car!", wherein Junior breaks a table with Bowser's old clown car and gets sent to Military School for it.
  • Team Four Star:
    • Played for laughs in the Let's Play of Left 4 Dead 2 custom campaign "I Hate Mountains". During the rescue, they remind each other to remember the lessons learned when they played "Hard Rain". After a Beat, they start shooting Kaiser Neko, who was the Sole Survivor of "Hard Rain"note . When the rest of the group runs to the escape plane, a Tank appears and starts kicking their butts; they instantly declare it the Karma Tank (though two of them still manage to get away).
    • In Yu Yu Hakusho Abridged, Lanipator gets hit twice with this during part 3 of "Blood Harvest". At one point Takahata has been incapped and KaiserNeko asks if anyone wants to help him. Lani just says he's shooting Taka. A Charger then attacks Lani. Later, Ganxingba gets trapped by fire and Lani decides to throw a gas can and a propane tank to make it worse. He's then grabbed by a smoker. In both instances, he calls it karma.
    • In a Serious Sam 3: BFE mission, Lani makes a joke about fat people and is blown up seconds later. He calmly admits that was karma.
  • In the Yogscast Minecraft Series, Simon jokingly sets fire to the Yogcave, then stands around yakking while Lewis panics trying to put the flames out. Moments later, Simon is "accidentally" knocked into a deep underground pit. He climbs out and promptly burns to death. Later, when he's respawned and the fire's gone out, he wanders out the back door... and triggers a booby trap and blows up.

Karmō canicula 


Please Heal Me, Dende

After all the crap he pulled on Namek, a critically injured Vegeta has the nerve to ask Dende to heal him....

Thankfully, Dende has other plans for now

How well does it match the trope?

5 (9 votes)

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Main / AssholeVictim

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