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Mad Love

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Moze: Why don't you just tell Missy the truth? You're not interested in her.
Ned: Because the truth doesn't work on crazy people!

When Alice loves Bob and there is nothing anyone can do — not even Bob — to persuade her that their love isn't mutual.

This is not just All Love Is Unrequited or Oblivious to Love. Bob is well aware of this one-sided crush, but his protests fall on deaf ears. He can tell Alice he isn't interested, sometimes violently, but she invariably fails to catch on. Her behavior often straddles the line between Clingy Jealous Girl, Stalker with a Crush or even Psycho Supporter, but she generally means no harm to Bob and also respects his ideals. If she does start becoming an actual threat to Bob or other people close to him though, then beware...

If Alice has terrible taste in suitors (and she usually does), then her "hubby" or "wifey" will abuse that unconditional love to further their crazy schemes and never hesitate to betray her if they fail, or if she gets too whiny. Y'know, because whining can cause headaches and stuff. And of course, the innocent (or more like oblivious) Alice will come trotting back for more punishment. If she has two neurons bobbing around in her skull, she'll be puzzled that her hubby/wifey has a "funny way" of showing love. If she has more than three, she'll eventually realize that Mr. Troubled, but Cute is just plain Trouble and move on, but she'll find it hard to resist falling back to him.


Expect Alice to be a headache for anyone in the center of a Love Triangle or Love Dodecahedron involving Bob. Third parties trying to convince her that she should move on will face replies like "You're Just Jealous" and other psychological barriers to reality and sanity.

Either gender can be a Mad Lover, for a beloved of either gender. It's just more common to have females in the role because this is often a comedy trope, and a clueless woman clinging to an exasperated man is much funnier than the reverse. Some writers adore this dynamic and like to keep the 'relationship' alive by giving Alice an occasional moment of affection from Bob, just to make everyone wonder what's really going on.

See also Hopeless Suitor and Rejection Affection, for less crazy examples of unrequited love from which this trope borrows some elements from. Compare with the more serious Love Martyr, a character in an unhealthy relationship whose love is meant to be selfless and noble (or at least sympathetic) instead of crazy, funny, and/or stupid. May overlap with Abhorrent Admirer. Compare Minion Shipping and Unholy Matrimony. Contrast with Vitriolic Best Buds, where this involves friends and may be mutual.


Not to be confused with the short-lived TV series starring Jason Biggs and Judy Greer. Not to be confused with the 1935 film Mad Love, which doesn't use this trope.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Ladd Russo and his fiance Lua in Baccano! share quite the odd romantic relationship, what with Ladd being a delightfully Ax-Crazy Psycho for Hire and Lua being an oddly serene Death Seeker. To them, "I'll kill you last", means "I love you", specifically, "I'm saving you for last because I'll enjoy killing you the most."
  • Black Butler:
    • Hannah for Alois. No matter how much he hurts her, she wouldn't think of leaving him, since she absorbed Luka's love for him.
    • Also Grelle for Sebastian. Leaving the fact that she's a Transgender woman (coming from Word of God, and here's the proof), she has a tendency to do anything to get Sebastian's attention. This makes her useful for the other main characters, especially Ciel, who promises her alone time with Sebastian in return for help. Sebastian does not seem too fond of this idea when he finds out, and as far as the anime shows, he manages to avoid her. Oh, and did we mention she's a death god and Sebastian's a Demon? Yeah, this a very strange relationship indeed.
    • Grelle has it for William, too.
  • In Black Cat, Creed is crazy about Train. Train constantly tries to beat him off of him and attempts numerous times to kill him. And Creed just can't seem to take a hint. Train must be resisting because someone "evil" is influencing him... and that person must be killed.
  • Bleach: Nemu Kurotsuchi puts up with the abuse and humiliation of the sadistic Mayuri Kurotsuchi, her father, because of her love and admiration for him. It should, however, be noted that she isn't his actual daughter since she is his Opposite-Sex Clone that he specifically designed to be obedient and submissive.
  • Code Geass:
    • It can be argued that Rolo is like this in regards to Lelouch, who even flat out tells him at one point that he's simply using him.
    • Mao displays an even more clear indication of this for C.C. He is so completely in love with her that he thinks it's alright to cut her up with a chainsaw in order to run away with her.note 
  • The quite, quite mad Misa Amane of Death Note will gladly do anything, including kill others or sacrifice herself, for Light's sake after he kills the murderers of her parents. Light sees her as an annoyance but one that can be easily manipulated, so he plays along, albeit considering killing her quite calmly at several points, although he never does it. After Light dies, she commits suicide according to Word of God, though a girl remarkably similar to her is seen participating in a candlelight vigil for Kira. Considering the blonde hair and the fact that she held a lucrative career before becoming the second Kira makes her seem like an anime version of Harley Quinn (especially considering Harley's new outfit in Batman: Arkham Asylum).
  • Digimon: Mummymon is head over heels in love with fellow villain Arukenimon, even though she clearly isn't interested. Neither of them is particularly crazy, and she's willing to tolerate him unless he gets too touchy-feely.
  • Every single relationship in Durarara!! is like this, mostly due to the incredibly dysfunctional cast. The healthiest one is probably the relationship between a back-alley surgeon and a female Dullahan (that is, a woman with no head), where the former outright says that he dissembled about the location of the latter's head because he never wanted her to leave him. And that's the point where their relationship improves.
  • Juvia of Fairy Tail has become this since Gray, who was originally just oblivious to her love, bluntly turns her down in Chapter 338, only for her to take it as him "toying with her affections".
  • Full Metal Panic!: Gauron "loves" the beautiful Kashim he first laid eyes on all those years ago, the same boy who hates him and loves to beat the shit out of him. Though knowing Gauron, he probably loves it more that Kashim hates him and beats the shit out of him. Whenever Sousuke displays docile tendencies and sort of "gives in" (like in TSR, where he gently told Gauron "please"), Gauron gets pissed off and acts like it would've turned him on a lot more if Sousuke were acting violent and defiant.
  • Yuno Gasai of Future Diary. She'll do anything to be with her Yuki-kun. "Anything" including suicide, homicide (with an axe), stalking, etc. At first, she freaks the crap out of Yuki, but he lets her stay around so she can protect him from some other crazy people who are after his life as part of a There Can Only Be One game. Later, he does come to develop feelings for her and when he told her he reciprocated her love, she responded by tying him to a chair and keeping him drugged for an entire week, to ensure that he'd stay "safe". It is worth noting that, despite being as reasonably sane as is humanly possible while also being capable of massacring orphans (It Makes Sense in Context), he's still with her after escaping from the chair.
  • Gintama: Ayame "Sa-chan" Sarutobi actually enjoys being abused/rejected by the object of her affection Gintoki.
  • Comedic example found in Girls Bravo. Yukinari, Kirie, and Koyomi are wanted by the perverted Lisa, Kosame, and Fukuyama. All the punches and various other acts of rejection they dish out? The Fukuyama siblings, plus Kosame, like it very much.
  • Shuichi from Gravitation towards Yuki. He chases Yuki constantly, despite being rejected, verbally abused, and often being called a little brat. They eventually end up together.
  • Hetalia: Axis Powers:
    • Russia beats and stalks Lithuania, the only person he seems to be truly happy around. Considering that Russia is a male Yandere...
    • His sister Belarus is quite similar. Lithuania seems to have a crush on her, she agrees to go out with him once... and ten minutes later, she breaks and twists his fingers. Then, she's shown as Russia's Stalker with a Crush... Must be In the Blood.
    • Belarus and Russia also qualify. He constantly cries, hides, and tells her to "go home!", but that doesn't stop her from literally breaking down his door wanting to "get married, married, married!"
  • In Inuyasha, Inuyasha found himself on the receiving end of Jakotsu's attentions who was quite determined to show Inuyasha the affection he always gives to his favourites... which involves death and possibly torture/rape.
  • Kaiju Girl Caramelise: Manatsu Tomosato is a Kaiju obsessed girl who has a crush on Harugon, a Notzilla who starts appearing around Tokyo. Unbeknownst to her, "he" is actually her female classmate Kuroe Akaishi undergoing Involuntary Shapeshifting at times of extreme emotion. Kuroe sporadically tries to urge Manatsu to give up trying to gain Harugon's affections without revealing her Secret Identity, but Manatsu is such a Cloud Cuckoolander that it does no good.
  • Eva Heinemann from Monster 'fails to get the message' to the extent that her ultimatum to her love interest, after he rejects her very plainly, is the following: facing murder charges which she will lie through her teeth to corroborate, or being with her. That Tenma chooses the former is a good indicator of how batshit crazy she is.
  • Naruto: Karin loves Sasuke. Sasuke almost kills Karin and gets her captured by her enemy. Karin breaks out of jail to be greeted by Sasuke's "I'm sorry" only to fall in love with him all over again.
  • Outlaw Star: Melfina is terrified of Harry for his unhealthy obsession with her and wants nothing to do with him. Rather than drive him away, her rejection of him simply makes him even more determined to win her love. Which he somehow manages to do, shortly before he dies; why Melfina changes her mind all of a sudden when he makes it explicit that the only reason he's being even remotely respectful is that he's on his way out and doesn't have the energy to be his normal, creepy self is a mystery for the ages.
  • Quite a few relationships in PandoraHearts are like this, like Jack for Lacie, Oz for Alice, Vincent for Gil, possibly even Gil for Oz... Echo for Vincent looks like it's going to be a major one after the release of Chapter 89.
  • Sasame from Prétear wavers between this and Love Martyr. On one hand, he's genuinely selfless and wants to help the girl he loves. On the other hand, the girl he loves is a Dark Magical Girl that doesn't care about him, and he's willing to destroy the world to stay by her side.
  • Ranma ½ has multiple.
    • Tatewaki Kuno is after both Akane and Girl-form Ranma. Neither rain, nor snow, nor repeated knocks into the stratosphere or blows to the head will deter him.
    • His sister Kodachi also partially qualifies for her pursuit of boy-type Ranma, but before the end of the manga admits that she knows he doesn't love her. Note that this doesn't actually stop her.
    • And of course, one must mention Mousse, who pursues Shampoo past all common sense...
    • And Shampoo, in her pursuit of Ranma.
    • Ryoga almost qualifies in his pursuit of Akane, he's just smart enough to hide it and take the stalker route instead.
  • Haru towards Tsuna in Reborn! (2004). Interestingly, she started off hating Tsuna because she thought he was mistreating Reborn but quickly changed her mind after he saved her from drowning. With a little help from a Dying Will Bullet, of course, but that was enough to rewrite him as "awesome" in her book.
    • Chrome for Mukuro. Of course Mukuro does seem to love her back in his own twisted way.
  • Rurouni Kenshin:
    • A tragic take on his is the relationship between Shishio Makoto and Komagata Yumi. She was his retainer and caretaker, always frustrated because she wasn't an Action Girl and knew battles were the more important thing that her Magnificent Bastard boyfriend cared for, so she didn't mind even being run through by him with his sword so he could win. And Shishio actually cared for Yumi as much as someone like him could, defending her when a shocked and horrified Kenshin questioned what had just happened and cradling Yumi's fatally injured body in his arms so she could die in peace... before he died his Karmic Death.
    • Then they go off to take over Hell together afterward! It's sweet! (No, really, this actually happens. They even wait for Hoji, his administrative assistant with a man-crush, to commit suicide and catch up with them, too.)
    • Kamatari had it even worse, though I don't think either case with Shishio really applies – he was quite happy to have them around, he's just All Take and No Give. This is because he's a crossdresser and, though hardly gender-queer at all (he laughs and flashes Misao when she mistakes him for a woman), and is perfectly aware that he's not the strongest or the most beautiful retainer, and can't compete for Shishio's attention on either field. Even if Shishio liked guys, he'd have probably gone for Soujiro. Ow, Brain Bleach, please.
  • Ferid of Seraph of the End appears to be one for Kururu. He waxes poetically about how beautiful she is and how much he loves her even after she cuts his arm off and expresses her contempt for him.
  • Chapter 56 of Tokyo Ghoul all but solidifies Eto as one for Kaneki. Basically, the more violent Kaneki is with her, the more she responds in kind and falls harder for him. Getting impaled results in her holding him close, licking his eyeball, and happily proclaiming her fondness for him as well as their similarity. Getting sliced in half and thrown off the top of a building results in an outright Love Confession while Laughing Mad.
    • Mutsuki's growing Sanity Slippage and psychotic tendencies become with the realization that they love Sasaki/Kaneki and are jealous of Touka. Kaneki refuses to be with Mutsuki and returns to the CCG with them. Not accepting refusal, Mutsuki promptly gets out their knives laced with rc suppressor drug and attacks Kaneki to render him powerless so they may take him back with them by force and tries to murder Touka the one who has Kaneki's love.
  • Trigun features poor Legato Bluesummers, Ax-Crazy telepathic mass murderer. He doesn't have it so clearly bad in the anime, though he is utterly devoted and Knives sends him to his death, but manga Legato...alas, poor monster.
    • The fact that Knives doesn't care about him is sad. The fact that he is perfectly aware that after trying to have Vash killed any chance of Knives ever liking him is gone, is very sad. The fact that despite how shittily Knives treats him no one else ever treated him nearly as well is just tragic.
    • Like the Rurouni Kenshin example above, this Big Bad's minions include two who are madly in love with him. Also, much blood and horror, and Legato is totally unhinged for most of Maximum.
  • Vampire Princess Miyu has Ranka the Uncanny Valley Girl and Shinma puppeteer, and Kei Yuzuki the Chick Magnet. He knows she's not from this world and that does not stop him from falling for her. And yes, she loves him back and takes him to the Darkness with her... at Kei's own request.
  • Yubel in Yu-Gi-Oh! GX is not above murder, manipulation, kidnapping, torture, and even brainwashing and assaulting her own love interest Judai so they could be together. In an unusual twist, Yubel also makes herself out to be the Love Martyr, encouraging Judai to do the same despicable things to her, under the crazed belief that since "true love" is sharing emotions and experiences — both good and bad — love can only be expressed through shared suffering. At the end of the third season, however, he manages to show her otherwise via a complicated Fusion Dance, and Love Redeems takes place.
  • YuYu Hakusho Itsuki and his boss, Sensui. It may be reciprocal on Sensui's part, but he's too crazy and obsessed with The End of the World as We Know It to care. The only one of the seven Sensui selves Itsuki seemed to think he had any romantic mileage with was the girl.
    Comic Books 
  • Exploited in "The Acid Test", in Issue #11 of The Haunt of Fear, when a woman threw acid in her slavishly devoted husband's face to discourage his attentions and he argued in court that it was done in the heat of the moment and he still loved her, only to reveal that it was all part of his plot for revenge and gloat about how, once he gave her the same treatment, she'd never leave him again...
  • Harley Quinn and Joker. The one-shot comic Mad Love, which was later adapted into an episode of the same name, that tells how Dr. Harleen Quinzel, then a psychiatrist at Arkham Asylum, first met The Joker. The Joker saw her immediately as a tool to be used and manipulated her into becoming a henchman. However, at the climax, Joker tosses Harley out a 3rd story window for getting the upper-hand on Batman without him, and she blames herself she "didn't get the joke".note  Cut to Arkham at the end of the episode with a heavily-bandaged Quinn vowing in her normal voice that her life of crime was over since she now saw the Joker for what he was: "a murderous, manipulative, irredeemable —" At which point she spots a rose sitting in her cell with a note of apology from Mr. J, causing her to smile and dreamily say "Angel!" in Harley's voice. Definitely chilling, and worth a watch. Even more so in the comic, Dr. Leeland asks Harley what it felt like to be treated so poorly after all she's done. Harley notices the rose and says "Like a kiss" which is all the more disturbing. (In fact, it's a Shout-Out to the 1962 The Crystals song, "He Hit Me (It Felt Like a Kiss)".) According to Bruce Timm, The Joker really does need her, saying, "Everyone's seen The Joker laugh. Harley is the only one who's seen him cry."
    • You can see it too, when she runs off with Ivy, the man can't even find his socks.
    • At one point, after yet another incident when the Joker nearly kills her, Ivy freaks out in frustration and demands to know if Harley understands what just happened, and Harley tells her that yes, she knows he was trying to kill her.
    • In Death of the Family, Harley Quinn has gone back to the Joker's side, and she even set herself up as a convincing decoy for Batman to go after at the Ace Chemical Plant. Played with, turns out she's not there solely out of loyalty to the Joker (and even states that he's not her Mr. J anymore, and outright attacks him); she's there because Joker threatened to desecrate Deadshot's corpse. Also, the Joker's mad that she got together with Deadshot, and it's one of two reasons he's going after her at all.
    • Played with when it comes to the Joker's other partner, Punchline (created as "the anti-Harley Quinn") Her bond with the Joker is less emotional than Harley's and more intellectual: she knows he's a sociopath, knows he won't change, and yet she thinks his philosophy is the bee's knees. As a result, Joker offers her more respect than he offered Harley, praising her when she comes up with a particularly brilliant plan and never yelling at or hitting her. However, Punchline still has a jealous streak when it comes to Harley, and cover artists seem to enjoy having her cuddled up against the Joker.
  • The Captain America villains Red Skull and Mother Night had a relationship like this. Mother Night was deeply in love with the Skull, even though he was always abusive to her. At one point he even started flirting with Viper (another Cap villain) just to piss her off.
  • In the newspaper comic strip Curtis, Curtis Wilkins considers the snobbish and aspiring actress Michelle to be "my girl," despite her going to great lengths to avoid him (and when she doesn't, it's only to brag to him about her accomplishments or have him do some menial task for her). Even after Michelle flat-out states to him that she's tried every way she can think of to show that she's not interested in him, Curtis believes that she's only being a good actress, causing her to sob in frustration.
  • An old example from the funny pages occurs in Krazy Kat. The eponymous character has a crush on Ignatz Mouse, and regards the bricks he pelts at her as signs of affection: "Little dollink — always fetful!"
  • Mr. Gosh from Lenore the Cute Little Dead Girl takes Mad Love to a whole new level, as the eponymous Lenore frequently kills him in response to his interests — he incorrectly writes it off as more of her typical fatal accidents, when he's one of the few people she intentionally tries to kill. Then again, as Lenore is a 10-year-old girl who died roughly a century prior to the start of the comics, the Mad Love may be the least disturbed part of his interest in her.
  • Robin Series: Darla Aquista thinks the only thing keeping Tim from hopping right into a serious relationship with her is her father's mob ties and that he'll start dating her anyway, even though he's made it clear he's happy with his current girlfriend, doesn't want to break up with Steph even after a period of her failing to pick up the phone (he knows Bruce is interfering), and really isn't interested in Darla's pushy self-centered self even a little bit. When she returns as an undead super-powered menace and learns Tim is grieving his girlfriend she decides this means they're dating, just because Stephanie is dead, even though Tim clearly states he's not looking for a relationship and tries to avoid her.
  • In Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics), Thunderbolt the Chinchilla serves Dr. Eggman primarily out of sheer, unrequited adoration. It's to the point where she has a Stalker Shrine in her bedroom with her face crudely plastered over photographs of Eggman and his robots.
  • Teen Titans: Terra's and Beast Boy's relationship is hilariously flanderized into this in Tiny Titans. Beast Boy is head-over-heels in love with Terra, however, Terra loathes him and his affections. It goes way past being annoyed at his love-sick behavior, she's constantly pelting him with rocks and berating him.
    Fan Works 
    Films — Live-Action 
  • Serves as The Reveal in He Loves Me... He Loves Me Not. For the first half of the film, we are led to believe that the main character is having an affair with a married man, but at the midway point the film snaps back to the beginning and follows the man instead. We find out that she is really an insane stalker and he barely knows she exists.
  • The main conceit of It's Love I'm After is to stop Marcia from being completely in love with Basil. He tries to push her away by being a horrible cad, but she only excuses his actions and thinks him even more irresistible.
  • In My Man Godfrey, the female lead is head over heels in love with the butler Godfrey, who desperately tries to keep her away.
  • In film Road House (1948), Jefty is completely delusional about his relationship with Lily. He thinks he can marry her, basically, without any consent or even plain interest on her part.
  • The Rocky Horror Picture Show's Columbia falls under this. She's hopelessly devoted to Dr. Frank N Furter despite the fact that he views her as nothing more than his "groupie". Columbia later realizes that Frank doesn't give a damn about her and totally chews his ass out for it.
    • This is driven even FURTHER in the original play in which Columbia does a Heroic Sacrifice by putting herself between Frank and Riff Raff causing her to be killed by the laser. Frank's reaction? "Stupid bitch." Though, he does say it in a way that hints that he did feel somewhat sorry for her.
  • Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, who enables Sweeney's serial murders and disposes of his victims by baking them into pies. She continues to make romantic overtures to him despite his obvious disinterest, going so far as to trick him into thinking his wife is dead. He throws her into her own oven to burn to death when he discovers her deception.
  • Logan’s obsessive love for Jean in the X-Men Film Series. At most, Jean thinks he’s attractive but is in love with and devoted to Scott -– a fact she makes abundantly clear to Logan. Logan, on the other hand, pursues her relentlessly, including a Forceful Kiss in the second film. It appears he's come to accept she loved Scott not him following her Heroic Sacrifice at the end of X2: X-Men United. Only for X-Men: The Last Stand to show that is not the case culminating in him giving her a Dying Declaration of Love before killing her. The Wolverine, shows he has turned into a hermit following her death and has been having both nightmares about it and romantic dreams about her (sometimes combined) in the years since. This movie ends with him telling her dream form that he’ll always love her and finally moving on. Then X-Men: Days of Future Past reveals that, nope, his memories of Jean are still his most prominent ones 20 or so years after her death and roughly 10 years after him “moving on.” All this despite only knowing her for about five days total.
  • Bellatrix Lestrange in Harry Potter embodies this trope. She's as mad as they come, and her devotion to Voldemort is nothing short of obsessive.
  • Claude Frollo's lust for Esmeralda in The Hunchback of Notre Dame, has driven him insane. He tries to have Quasimodo kidnap her, which doesn't work out. He then has her framed for murder and tells her that he can save her from her execution if she promises to love him.
  • I Am Not a Serial Killer has Hulla, a somewhat deranged demon who falls for John after he cold-calls her with someone else's phone to tell her he's going to kill her. She hates her own, so his passion for demon slaying has her convinced they're soulmates. Unfortunately for her, John does not share the sentiment.
  • The Urban Legend "Perfect Girl" is about a boy who's so in love with a girl he completely wrecks her life, makes her attempt suicide which cripples her, and makes her so haggard and deformed just so that no one will want her except him.
  • In The Phantom of the Opera Erik, aka The Phantom, has this for the heroine Christine Daaè. He convinces her that he is an angel sent by her deceased father, to get close to her. When the managers of the opera house won't let Christine sing, he crashes a chandelier into the audience during a performance. When Christine, in the end, plans to run away with her lover Raoul, he kidnaps her under a performance and threatens to blow up a quarter of Paris if she doesn't marry him.
  • In Second Apocalypse Cnaiür develops a very twisted sort of love/obsession with Serwë who wants nothing to do with him, because he keeps raping her.
  • In A Song of Ice and Fire the (quite frankly) mentally unstable and very cowardly Lysa Arryn is madly in love with her childhood friend, Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish who she has had a very sick-wrong and very emotionally abusive "crush" on since they were kids. She can only ever see him as the Troubled, but Cute, Lovable Rogue who will always, incidentally, be ranked lower than she that she first met. He outright uses this to manipulate her into helping him to rise both politically and financially within the realm over almost two decades. Until he reaches a position where he can start a massive civil-war... just because he couldn't have the actual woman he loved (aka — her sister, Catelyn), after which he eventually murders the "poor", deluded Lysa. This was partly because she was becoming increasingly and more dangerously Yandere on him, but also because she was no longer of any further use to him. Additionally, he had found a much younger Replacement Goldfish (who happens to be her 13-year-old niece, Sansa, who closely resembles Catelyn... at about the age Petyr first fell for Cat, squickily enough). It's Mad Love: the deadly quadrilateral headache — featuring some extra, hot mess Squick on quite a few sides.
  • Wuthering Heights: Edgar for Cathy Earnshaw. She walks all over him, ignores his wishes, throws temper tantrums, and obviously prefers the company of Heathcliff, and yet he refuses to give her up.
    Live-Action TV 
  • In The Flash (1990) TV series, Mark Hamill's Trickster character was the reason he was considered for his later Joker role; it was very similar to the point of having his own Harley Quinn, an unstable thrill-addicted toy designer who called herself Prank:
    Trickster: For me? Gee... after I treated you like dirt... hung you out to dry...
    Prank: I love you... madly.
    Trickster: Oh, darling, it won't work. I'm no good for you. Besides, how can I miss you... when you won't go away? [pushes Prank out of a moving vehicle]
  • Game of Thrones: Lysa's Yandere love for Littlefinger makes her easy to manipulate.
  • The I-Land: Donovan is revealed to have a severe obsessive disorder (possibly erotomania), making him fixate on a nearby woman as the "love of his life", even when he's only just met them, up to his proposing marriage. Naturally, he soon picks Blair. In the past, it's shown he killed a married co-worker who rejected his advances. For trying to stop him with Blair, he kills Mason as well.
  • Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide:
  • Christian Troy and Kimber Henry on Nip/Tuck: in the very first episode, shortly after they've slept together, he strips her naked and covers her in red lipstick to mark the places where he thinks she could use a little surgical tweaking. She comes back. Enough said.
  • Oz: Chris Keller is all too willing to do anything to keep Beecher for himself, even though this is what drives Beecher away and eventually kills Keller. Their relationship is quite tragic and fucked up, to say the least.
  • True Blood: In "It Hurts Me Too" after Bill pins Lorena against a wall and tells her that he'll never love her, she kisses him. He does not react well to this, first going for her throat with his fangs, then responding to her urging him to make love to her by doing so extremely violently to the point that he leaves several cuts on her chest and twists her head around 180 degrees. Lorena loves every second of it, and dreamily says "Oh William, I so love you." Also, even after Bill tells Lorena multiple times that he hates her guts and can't stand the sight of her, she still has the nerve to ask him "When will we see each other again?"
  • In Two and a Half Men Rose just won't take a hint from Charlie.
  • As mentioned in Comics, the song He Hit Me (It Felt Like A Kiss) by The Crystals.
  • Potentially, "Just the Girl" by The Click Five is about this. The woman keeps on rejecting the singer and even pushed him in a pool, with no clear sign that she's actually being tsundere, but he's head over heels for her anyway.
  • "Is It Really So Strange?" by The Smiths.
    Oh yes, you can kick me
    And you can punch me
    And you can break my face
    But you won't change the way I feel
    'Cause I love you."
  • Muse's "Space Dementia" ("You make me sick/Because I adore you so"; "You make us wanna die/I cut your name in my heart/We'll destroy this world for you/I know you want me to/Feel your pain"). Pretty creepy.
  • Eminem and Rihanna's "Love the Way You Lie". Bonus points when you consider both were on different sides (giver and receiver respectfully), in different Mad Love relationships themselves.
    • See also "Love the Way You Lie Part 2," which is largely the same song, but told more from the opposing point of view.
  • Will Smith's "Loretta" is about a real-life stalker of his (supposedly).
  • Lady Gaga: This is (supposedly) the theme of the song "Bad Romance".
  • "The Red Means I Love You" by Madds Buckley is from the point of view of someone declaring their love for another and wanting to taste their blood, while the subject of their affections is indicated to be trying to get away from them and pleading for them to stop.
    Run as you might, my love will never, ever
    Professional Wrestling 
  • Assassins: John Hinckley Jr. and Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme (see Real Life below) sing a duet Obsession Song, "Unworthy of Your Love", detailing their devotion to Jodie Foster and Charles Manson, respectively.
  • In As You Like It, this is the way that ALL the pairs of lovers behave, except for Touchstone & Audrey. It's the more innocent incarnation of the trope, where the issues arise because of Rosalind's gender-bending disguise. She gives herself the name "Ganymede" while disguised. Rosalind likes Orlando, Phoebe falls in love with Ganymede, Silvius likes Phoebe: Hilarity Ensues. Although the word "abuse" gets used in the dialog, nothing the characters do would actually qualify under a modern-day definition of that word: apparently in William Shakespeare's day, the meaning was considerably weaker. There is a very clear distinction made between the actually abusive behavior of Orlando's brother Oliver and the way that Ganymede mocks his lovesick behavior. In her disguise, Rosalind (as Ganymede) pretends to do a kind of conversion therapy on Orlando: but it's really an elaborate pretext to flirt with him. There is also a scene where Rosalind (as Ganymede) has to fend off an overly affectionate Phoebe: but again, nobody is actually getting hurt here. All that ends up happening is a LOT of Les Yay.
  • In A Midsummer Night's Dream, Helena is this way about Demetrius, despite the fact that he repeatedly threatens her. Pretty soon, application of Love Potion makes both Demetrius and Lysander fall in love with Helena, which leads to her angrily fending off two guys, convinced that she's being made fun of. In the end, the spell on Lysander is reversed, and Demetrius and Helena get married.
  • Adaptations of the Public Domain character Sweeney Todd often portray Ms. Lovett in this manner. Musical adaptations almost always do so. Sweeney is rarely shown returning her affections. How crazy are they? One is a mass-murdering butcher who is still The Woobie of the plot in musicals, and the other packs the bodies into meat pies and sells them to unwitting customers.
    Video Games 
  • There are hints that Carmilla from the Castlevania series feels this way towards her master Dracula. Dracula seems to be indifferent, but Carmilla worships him and does everything in her power to aid him in leading humanity into darkness despite showing no true hatred towards humans.
  • A Running Gag in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn is the character Aimee's absolute infatuation with Ike; she makes it so blatant that even he can tell that she loves him, sending him, a hardened mercenary with Nerves of Steel, actually running and seeking cover from her in one convo, and tries to blackmail him in another. Naturally, he isn't amused at all by this at all; she actually manages to scare him so that he takes every chance to avoid her, and causes him to override his normal lack of filter, waiting until she's out of earshot to call her delusional. Though unfortunately for him almost everything between him and her is Played for Laughs to the point even Soren starts teasing him in one of the aforementioned convos.
  • In Luigi's Mansion 3, Hellen Gravely is deeply infatuated with King Boo. So much so that she broke him out of his containment and lured Luigi and friends to the Last Resort to trap them into paintings, all to impress King Boo. King Boo doesn’t seem to notice or care about her affections and is only interested in her effectiveness in helping him catch Luigi.
  • In Episode 3 of Phantasy Star Universe it is greatly implied that the reason Helga is so intent on serving Howzer, even after he deemed her as "expendable," is because she is in love with him.
  • It's hinted in Pokemon Diamond/Pearl/Platinum that Mars (and possibly Jupiter too) of Team Galactic are on the team due to an infatuation with Cyrus. Since Cyrus considers all emotion burdensome, you can guess how much he returns these feelings.
  • In the Puyo Puyo series, Rulue has an intense crush on the Dark Prince, genuinely believes he returns her affections, and can't even dream of being with anyone besides him. The Dark Prince himself has no interest in Rulue and would rather make Arle his wife.
  • Tira from the Soul Series is absolutely devoted to Nightmare. The scary thing is that this might be her least disturbing trait.
  • The less-common male version occurs in Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World with Alice and Decus, with the former utilizing the latter's feelings for all they're worth. Of course, that all changes when Decus sacrifices himself to save Alice...
  • Shrowdy von Keifer, villain of A Vampyre Story, makes a habit of kidnapping young women and then "disposing" of them when he gets bored. By the time the storyline proper rolls around, Mona is but the latest in an ever-growing line of women who have disappeared that way, and on top of that, she's either the woman Shrowdy's been looking for, or due to be axed at any minute, because she's lasted longer than any of her predecessors. Just for added creepy fun, it's very strongly implied that Shrowdy's victims are all chosen because they resemble his missing mother.
    Visual Novels 
  • Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc:
    • Touko Fukawa has this kind of relationship with Byakuya Togami. Togami makes it clear several times that he doesn't think much of her (then again, he doesn't think much of anyone), but Fukawa just interpret his insults to mean that he's secretly concerned about her. Still, Togami isn't above taking advantage of Fukawa's almost slavish devotion towards him when he sees fit.
    • It's at least strongly hinted that Genocider Syo's murders were all motivated by her becoming infatuated with the victims, all 37 of them. (Which can be figured out by counting the tally marks on her thigh.)
  • In Dra+Koi the dragon falls for the protagonist, enrolls in his school, chases him around and rapes him on the roof and then moves in, after which he reluctantly enters a relationship with her. What else can he do?
  • Moran for M in Shikkoku no Sharnoth. Interestingly enough, they're both portrayed sympathetically.
  • Backstory of Umineko: When They Cry in a nutshell, at least as Beatrice tells itman summons witch, man falls in love with witch, witch doesn't love him, man traps witch on island, witch dies-ish, man can no longer see witch, man decides to kill entire family in order to revive witch (though that last part isn't true since he's been dead for over a year before the story begins) and spends most of his time screaming at the sky. Love? Depends on your definition, but definitely mad.
    • Later in the series, we discover that the truth behind this is far worse: Man meets woman, they fall in love, man keeps woman as his mistress in a hidden mansion, they have a daughter but the woman dies, daughter grows up to look so much like her mother that her father forces himself on her, daughter becomes pregnant and has a child but dies not long after, man still spends most of his time screaming at the sky until he finally meets that lost child. And dies. And then that lost child becomes the secret master of the island and also becomes crazy because of love.
    Web Animation 
  • The Pucca/Garu romance in the webcartoon and television cartoon Pucca has many elements of this, although in this case, it's not necessarily the love that's unrequited, just the interest in displays of affection. Garu does care for Pucca, but he's still not past the "Girls Have Cooties" stage and his girlfriend is a huge Clingy Jealous Girl.
  • In Girl Genius, Gil has an unfortunate tendency to attract this kind of attention, with both Xerxsephnia von Blitzengaard and Zola displaying this attitude toward him.
  • I Don't Want This Kind of Hero: This hit Morae Baek hard. Raptor saved him from committing suicide, and so he fell in love. It'd be a sweet story if he didn't then proceed to secretly murder all of her friends, cripple her, and pretend to be a supportive friend in order to monopolize all of her attention. Oh, and essentially violently stalk her for a decade. As he tells her, he'll never be content until he's the only one in her heart.
  • In The Order of the Stick, Tsukiko is in love with Xykon, but he obviously doesn't return her feelings.
  • Suicide for Hire has had a few of these, first with a crazed stalker who, upon realising she had over 9000 competitors for her target's love, decided to drag his reputation through the mud to ensure she was his only choice; then, later on, there was a woman, who even after having her scalp ripped off and her baby forcibly aborted, a la Jigsaw's wife, still goes back to her husband. Justified in that the second woman was suffering from Domestic Abuse-induced Stockholm Syndrome — she knew she shouldn't go back to him, but he'd cut off every other contact in her life so that she couldn't see any means of successfully escaping him.
    Web Videos 
  • Shannon from Echo Chamber in regards to Tom.
  • If it was set in the real world, The Nostalgia Chick's obsession with Todd in the Shadows would have either landed her in jail or a mental asylum. Not that Todd in the Shadows has the moral high ground, as Allison Pregler can tell you...
  • Noob seems to have a downplayed version of this between Nazetrîme and Master Zen. The target's feeling towards the situation differs between the two media in which the crush in mentioned. The webseries has his reaction to it shown while he's giving an "I'm superior to you guys" speech to the protagonists, so he shows a "nice, uh?" reaction to the woman mentioning her crush on him during her own introduction. However, the comic version has the crush mentioned when the two are alone with their own guildmates, and his reaction is closer to "Got it, you like me, now stop walking so close to me."
    Western Animation 
  • Harley Quinn and the Joker, again: All throughout Batman: The Animated Series (where Harley originated, after all), she loved him unconditionally and madly (in the insane way as well as... *ahem* deeply). She would quit him every so often and join up with Poison Ivy but would go work for him again in the end. See Comic Books for the deconstruction about Harley's origins, which gives her Hidden Depths. (Harley was originally just a Mook du Jour but became an Ascended Extra.)
    • Batman Beyond had a similar case with the supervillainess Inque and a random sap named Aaron Herbst who supervised her while in prison. Aaron ends up requesting to be given shapeshifting powers like Inque, to which Inque responds by giving him only half the treatment, causing him to mutate into a liquidated, powerless blob, and in the end being on the receiving end of this trope.
  • Played with in The Batman, which initially seems to cast Joker as the doting boyfriend and Harley as the cold, dismissive girlfriend. She ends up pushing this too far and is harshly reminded who's really in charge (and is then abandoned to die in a fire).
  • Beware the Batman has Magpie, who is basically a merger Harley Quinn and Catwoman. She has an obsessive crush on Batman, keeping photos of him in prison and mistaking his gestures of kindness for romance.
  • Panini is madly in love with Chowder and her every effort has been to make him hers. Chowder wants nothing to do with Panini, to the point that his Catchphrase is to tell her, "I'm not your boyfriend!".
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy has the Kanker Sisters extreme romantic pursuit of the Eds.
  • The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy features Irwin, who has a huge crush on Mandy, no matter how many times she rejects him (even when she does this in utterly mean ways).
  • Harley Quinn (2019): As in most incarnations, Harley is madly in love with the Joker and is completely blind to the fact that he sees her as nothing but a disposable asset to be manipulated for his benefit, stubbornly insisting he does love her even though he has abandoned her to get arrested and locked up more than once. Unlike other versions, this series starts with Harley getting much needed help from Poison Ivy to finally open her eyes to the truth that the Joker cares for no one but himself and Batman, which leads to Harley breaking up with him for good. Much of the rest of the show is her trying to move on, avoid relapsing and understand what a real loving relationship looks like.
  • Kaeloo: Pretty, the Alpha Bitch of the group, is madly in love with Mr. Cat. He blatantly hates her, and in one episode he revealed that he thinks she should commit suicide, yet she still thinks he likes her and he is playing "hard to get".
  • Looney Tunes:
    • Pepe LePew. The clawing, the biting, the beatings, the screaming, and running away? He's confident that the object of his desire is just "playing hard to get."
    • Penelope Pussycat, Pepe's reluctant love interest, has shown on three separate occasions to be way more aggressive and passionate than Pepe. Incidentally, those shorts that show how much of a spitfire an interested Penelope can be suggested that Pepe's scent is literally the only thing driving her away; sad, then, that Pepe is intimidated by assertive women and rapidly loses interest as soon as one or both of them does something to take his smell out of the equation.
  • The Simpsons gives us Mr. Smithers, who only has eyes for Mr. Burns. Usually.
    Smithers: People like dogs, Mr. Burns.
    Mr. Burns: Nonsense! Dogs are idiots. Think about it, Smithers: if I came into your house and started sniffing at your crotch and slobbering all over your face, what would you say?
    Smithers: [pause] If you did it, Sir?
  • Tiny Toon Adventures:
    • There is also Fifi LeFume who chases after any potential skunk boyfriends (or more to the point, male dogs or cats that have white stripes down their back and were doused in black paint).
    • One may think Elmyra qualifies, though in a zoophilic version of the trope.
    Real Life 
  • Nathan Leopold, who was willing to engage in criminal acts of an escalating nature as long as Richard Loeb (who was more successful socially, better liked and better looking- as well as sociopathic) had sex with him.
  • Lynette Fromme served 34 years in prison (released August 2009) for trying to assassinate U.S. President Gerald Ford because she thought it would make Charles Manson happy.
    • In the Stephen Sondheim musical Assassins, during her part of a duet she croons "You are wind and devil and God/Charlie/take my blood and my body for your love/let me feel fire, let me drink poison/tell me to tear my heart in two/if that's what you want me to do..."
  • Similarly, John Hinckley Jr. spent 35 years (released in Auguest 2016) in a mental hospital for shooting U.S. President Ronald Reagan in an attempt to impress Jodie Foster (taking the idea from Taxi Driver, which she co-starred in).
    • He also sings the duet in Assassins, with his part starting with "I am nothing/you are wind and water and sky/Jodie/tell me Jodie how I can earn your love/I would swim oceans I would move mountains/I would do anything for you/what do you want me to do?"
  • Victor Neuburg. He and Aleister Crowley engaged in a "sadomasochistic magical working" (with Crowley being very much the sadistic half), during which time Crowley was a horrible racist to Neuburg and "leveled numerous brutal verbal attacks on Neuburg's family and Jewish ancestry". They were lovers by the end of the year, if not sooner. Then Neuburg had a nervous breakdown.
  • The documentary Crazy Love documents the real-life (and pathetic) Mad Love between Linda Riss and Burt Pugach. After Riss ended her affair with him, Paguch hired men to throw lye in her face — blinding her permanently. He went to jail, but Riss dumped her fiance (who still wanted to be with her after the attack) and married Paguch after he got out. Certainly brings new meaning to the phrase "severe co-dependence".