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Teach Him Anger

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That's not really what anger management is meant for...

"Solve a man's problem with violence, help him for a day. Teach a man to solve his problems with violence, help him for a lifetime."
Belkar Bitterleaf, The Order of the Stick

Kindness is a highly valuable trait in people, but, if taken to extremes, also a potentially dangerous one to have. In episodes where the Nice Guy and Friend to All Living Things will unavoidably have to face danger, friends will try to teach them assertiveness, a few self-defense moves, or actual fighting techniques to face threats. The problem lies in that they are too timid, half-hearted, Weak-Willed or kind to avoid their Extreme Doormat tendencies, much less actually learn to fight.

The solution is to teach them anger and rage; rather than dealing with their anger in a healthy way (or more likely, sublimating it) instead channel it into their words and fists - in extreme cases, even going so far as to instil a killer instinct. This can have two outcomes, one good and one bad.

The good outcome results in the character gaining a backbone without losing their better traits. Their nature and demeanor as a kind/caring/friendly person will otherwise remain unchanged, but now they'll stand up for themselves and the weak rather than simply caring for them.

The bad outcome happens when they learn anger too well. In some cases, these kind and caring pacifists subconsciously knew they were carefully balanced over a dormant volcano of potential violence and chose to keep it dormant at all costs. And then their friends went and woke it up. If Phlebotinum is involved, then it is likely paired with An Aesop against changing others to suit you...because they'll turn into a Brainwashed and Crazy dynamo of destruction who revels in their new Superpowered Evil Side. There may be a cry of "What Have I Become?"/"My God, What Have I Done?" if someone they care for is hurt, or killed!

On the bright side, these usually end in Pygmalion Snapback.

Compare Did You Think I Can't Feel?, Killing Intent, Rage Breaking Point, Inspirational Insult.

Contrast We Want Our Jerk Back! and Tame His Anger. This may be applied to large groups in the form of Training the Peaceful Villagers.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • One episode of Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu features Sousuke putting the school rugby team through gruelling Training from Hell, reminiscent of the boot camp part of Full Metal Jacket to turn them from timid weaklings into disciplined powerhouses. This works only marginally better than it did in said film, as they become borderline-rabid and utterly terrifying as a result.
  • Well, in Reborn! (2004), this is pretty much what Reborn tries to teach Tsuna, which is part of his process of growing out of being a total loser and becoming a real man. The Dying Will Bullets, to put it simply, either put Tsuna into a determined, Unstoppable Rage, or give him a cold, calculating killer instinct. This is mainly played as having good results, with Tsuna gaining a backbone and the strength to protect his "family."
  • There's a Star Wars manga (yes, manga, and not just of the movies, although it's non-canon) where Darth Vader slaughters a colony of hidden Jedi and spares the last one, a rather young boy, because Force Sensitivity plus incredible anger equals a good Sith apprentice. So Vader takes the boy back and finds that while Tao attacks him on command, for whatever reason even reminding the boy that Vader killed his family and razed his world doesn't make him use his hatred. ...It's a rather weird story.
  • Gohan pretty much goes through this in the Cell saga of Dragon Ball Z. It has good results when he finally achieves the Super Saiyan state, but when Cell forces him to go Super Saiyan 2 so he can have a worthy fight the opposite happens. Moment of Awesome yes, but Gohan's actions later on cause Goku to make a Heroic Sacrifice.
    • A large part of Gohan's training with both Piccolo and Goku is this. It finally culminates with Android 16 summarizing it in a succinct speech right before Cell kills him. The result gives Gohan access the Super Saiyan 2 and the loss of his childhood innocence, only for him to forget how to get the most out of channeling his rage 7 years later when it's needed again, and simply being out of shape.
    • A big part of Gohan's character arc in the Universe Survival Saga of Dragon Ball Super is regaining that anger and fighting instinct, which is much more difficult for him than just getting back into top physical shape.
    • Vegeta also does this to Cabba in the Universe Six arc in order to get the latter to unlock his Super Saiyan form. Namely, by making an (empty) threat to him that he'll destroy his home planet if he surrenders. It works.
  • Zane in Yu-Gi-Oh! GX. After a string of crippling defeats, he ends up on the brink of losing to a comic relief opponent while the crowd makes fun of him, and his manager coaxes him to let go of his "failed" ideals that got him to this point. The kid goes berserk, summoning a monster that almost destroys the arena and takes out his opponent in one turn. The whole point of this duel was for Zane's manager to convince him to reform and turn his career around, but if his reaction to Zane's gambit is a good indication, this wasn't quite what he had in mind.
  • In Fist of the North Star, Shin unintentionally does this to Kenshiro. After thoroughly defeating him, Shin gloats to Kenshiro that the difference between the two is that Shin is filled with ambition and Kenshiro isn't. Kenshiro took this to heart, and by the second encounter it's the other way around, with Kenshiro burning with anger and ambition to save Yuria against a broken Shin from Yuria's apparent suicide. The fight barely lasted 10 minutes. Considering that Shin knew that Yuria was still alive and Raoh was after her, he could have done it intentionally to make sure Kenshiro would be able to defend her from someone he wouldn't have been able to even touch.
  • One Hetalia: Axis Powers strip has Greece trying to get the polite and soft-spoken Japan to become angry. He succeeds by telling him to think about wasting his money.
  • Basically the conspiracy's goal in Fullmetal Alchemist (2003), which seeks to make a powerful alchemist angry, callous or desperate enough where they're willing to fulfill the primary production requirement of the Philosopher's Stone: sacrificing thousands of human lives. This approaches Break the Cutie levels for Reluctant Warriors Ed & Al.
  • In Pluto, Dr. Tenma teaches Atom hatred in a desperate attempt to awaken him from his coma. It works, and the extra hatred gives Atom the ability to fight Pluto.
    Atom: You may be a seething mass of hatred. But my hatred is greater by far.
    • As it would turn out, Tenma also gave Atom Gesicht's dying memories presumably to give him more hatred. As it turns out Gesicht's final moments were so anti-hatred, it inspires Atom and Pluto to work together to save the world.
  • Guilty's training of Ikki in Saint Seiya, giving him Training from Hell while goes to extreme levels to anger him to use the Phoenix Cloth. Ikki endures it all until Guilty accidentally kills his own daughter Esmeralda during training, making him snap and kill Guilty in a fit of rage (to Guilty's glee), earning the Cloth in the process.
  • The whole first half or more of Trigun is about this trope being pushed on Vash, the villains trying to make him snap and kill. Knives' whole life has been theoretically devoted to a Roaring Rampage of Revenge against the human race, and he wants his brother to join him, or failing that to stop being so high-and-mighty.
    • Wolfwood, who isn't a villain even if he is working for them, is even more determined on this front; in the manga this leads to an epic moment where he pulls Vash's gun against his own face and demands, "shoot." Saying it would be worth his life if Vash would submit to reality and take up his role.
    • Vash does have plenty of anger, and on occasions like 'Diablo' it proves seriously scary. He wins the really important things without it, though. Both versions.
  • Played with in Naruto when Pain stabs Hinata in front of Naruto to "teach him pain" and prove that humans can never really understand each other. He's convinced that his pain is stronger than anyone else's so Naruto's resulting fury is no threat to him. Naruto proves him very, VERY wrong.
  • A rare, non-fighting example happens in Ace of the Diamond. Coach Nitta Kozo of Komadai Fujimaki purposefully cultivates a stressful environment and gives harsh lectures to his team in order to knock out overconfident attitudes and enhance his team's performance. This is specially true with his ace pitcher, Hongo Masamune, who gets more motivated to pitch by focusing on his anger at Nitta. Given that the team has won three major tournaments in a row and Hongo is considered by many the best pitcher in the series, it's clear that his method works.

    Comic Books 
  • The Incredible Hulk: Bruce Banner has Aesop Amnesia about this. The Hulk, of course, doesn't need to be taught anger. But the Hulk is usually considered a product of Banner's repressed rage, childhood abuse, and generally screwed-up psyche. Trying to control or get rid of the Hulk usually involves helping him with those issues, often meaning not bottling things up so much. Sometimes this results in fewer Hulk episodes, sometimes it results in a smarter Hulk, and at least once it resulted in a Banner with the Hulk's strength.note 
  • Megatron's backstory in The Transformers (IDW). Once a pacifist miner who wished to change the corrupt system of his world through peaceful means, he is unintentionally taught hatred after being brutally beaten-up by Whirl to have him silenced. After this, Megatron no longer believes peace is possible, and that violence is the best and only solution for change. This leads to a devastating war leading to the deaths of billions throughout the galaxy.
  • Disney Ducks Comic Universe: One story features Donald Duck earning a living by teaching people anger. His Uncle Scrooge hires him to teach an actor to be angry so the actor can better perform his role in a soap-opera Scrooge is sponsoring. Scrooge says he's already spent so much money promoting the actor that hiring a replacement is out of question. Donald's lessons turned out to be a case of Gone Horribly Right because the actor became angry enough to demand his payment to be tripled.

    Fan Works 
  • A Diplomatic Visit: Chapter 11 of the sequel Diplomat at Large reveals this is one of the Lord or Lady of Hatred's Duties, teaching others to channel anger and righteous hatred at a suitable target to help them grow a spine. It's also revealed that Aria Blaze has been trying to do this with Sonata Dusk for quite some time, to help her stand up for herself, unsuccessfully.

    Films — Animation 
  • In the Disney version of The Reluctant Dragon, the boy tries to get the dragon to breathe fire, but can't because he needs to be mad to do so, and he's not mad at anyone. It's only when the boy insults his poetry that the dragon starts spewing flames.
  • In The Land Before Time VIII: The Big Freeze, Ducky asks Cera this, who delivers it in song.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Bells of St. Mary's: A classic example in which Sister Superior Mary Benedict teaches a bullied boy how to box so he can defend himself.
  • The whole point of Anger Management is Buddy being an unbearable Jerkass to Dave and regularly putting him in uncomfortable situations in the hopes that he'll stand up for himself.
  • The Waterboy. Coach Klein told Bobby Boucher he could stand up for himself, and then he remembered all the people that had been mean to him over the years, and that was his "tacklin' fuel."
  • Yul does this to Junior in Cool Runnings. Something of a comedic subversion: As Junior takes the lesson to heart and storms off to confront his father, Yul quietly says that he was actually talking about himself and not Junior. But, hey, if it works for the kid...
    Yul: I see pride! I see power! I see a badass mother who won't take no crap off of nobody!
  • Star Wars: In Episode III, the Emperor does this to Anakin. In Episode VI, he tries to do it to Luke (Luke falls for it twice, but the third time he refuses to attack, and is promptly fried by a disappointed Sith Lord). Darth Vader has a go at it in Episode V:
    "Obi-Wan has taught you well, you have controlled your fear. Now, release your anger; only your hatred can destroy me!"
  • Star Trek (2009): Definitely example #2, as ALL Vulcans possess a violent beast beneath their calm exterior (and they're a lot stronger than humans). So, pushing Spock, who had just lost his entire planet (including most of his species and his mother), while necessary, was very painful for Kirk. Very painful.
  • In Ben-Hur (1959), Quintus Arius talks about this.
    Your eyes are full of hate, forty-one. That's good. Hate keeps a man alive. It gives him strength.
  • This is the means by which the Kreese and Terry Silver seek revenge against Mr. Miyagi by transforming Daniel into the opposite of everything Miyagi taught him to be, in The Karate Kid Part III. Silver teaches Daniel in techniques specifically geared for success in tournaments and formal matches and instills Cobra Kai's "Strike First" mentality in direct defiance of Miyagi-do's more pacifist philosophy. This does make Daniel a better fighter, but Kreese and Silver also teach Mike Barnes, Daniel's tournament opponent, everything that Silver is teaching Daniel, so that he can counter all of Daniel's new methods when they fight at the tournament. The master plan is that Daniel will embrace Cobra Kai's aggressive methods, irrevocably damaging his relationship with Miyagi by misusing the karate Miyagi taught him, in order to win a tournament that he'll still lose miserably when his opponent sees his new style and moves coming a mile away. It's only when Daniel breaks off from Silver and reunited with Miyagi that he learns what he needs to win.
  • In Dodgeball, Patches tells the timid, nerdy Gordon that he'll never be a good player until he learns to get angry. During the tournament, Gordon sees his mail-order bride with another man, goes into a rage, and single-handedly brings the team back from the brink of defeat.
  • Wonder Woman (2017): Ares tries to convince Wonder Woman to give up on humanity by showing her the horrors of mankind-led war.

  • Animorphs: Played with in the case of the Chee. They know what anger is, but they're programmed to be Actual Pacifists and can't harm a living being. In the first book they appear in, one of them reprograms himself to remove the prohibition...and is promptly horrified at the results. And since they're robots with a Photographic Memory, they can never forget what they've done.
  • In Discworld - Carpe Jugulum, the Magpyrs are a family of vampires, the patriarch of which has extensively trained his family to resist all the classic vampire weaknesses, because he doesn't see why they have to do it the stupid way and lose some of the time when they can win all the time and enslave all the dumb, weak humans. When the old Count de Magpyr returns, he's encouraged to take his grandchildren under his wing and teach them stupid, because having all those silly weaknesses means a vampire is not an utterly irredeemable existential threat that those dumb humans have to utterly exterminate.
  • This happens inThe Fionavar Tapestry by Guy Gavriel Kay. The race of Giants are the ultimate pacifists, unable to hate and unwilling to defend themselves. All but one refuse to even so much as ask for aid when they are being slowly tortured to death, because it would mean someone else has to battle on their behalf. When they are rescued from the brink of extinction, they are still unable to hate on their own behalf — only being forced to witness the brutal rape of someone else finally undoes their absolute pacifism. And even undone, they still never shed blood or directly fight in any way.
  • In the fourth Journey to Chaos novel, Sister Saggart encourages Annala to dig deep and cultivate as much anger and rage as she can because it is necessary to use malevolent holy chaos magic. This results in Killing Intent that makes a monster's madness seem tame in comparison. Her natural compassion means she can already use benevolent holy chaos magic.
  • Star Wars Legends: The novelization of Revenge of the Sith makes the Sith efforts to do this to Anakin more explicit - Count Dooku thinks that the plan is that he kills Obi-Wan, then Darth Sidious talks Anakin into joining the Sith, then Dooku surrenders and gets to sit out the war and become part of the developing Empire. It doesn't work quite like that.
  • Sword of Truth: Wizard's First Rule has Zedd teach Richard how to channel his anger instead of suppressing it, which allows him to use the full power of the Sword of Truth.
  • This is Played for Laughs in the Thursday Next novel Something Rotten, where Hamlet himself gets some life-coaching on how to take action and be more assertive.
  • Tortall Universe
    • In Emperor Mage, the third book of The Immortals quartet, Daine learns to use her anger to focus her power, though admittedly she has plenty to be angry about already.
    • Inverted in Beka Cooper. Four-year-old Prince Gareth learned how to hate on his own after witnessing his guards' murder, being abused as a slave, and seeing some of his slave friends murdered too. Beka says now that he's learned how to hate, he has to learn how to forgive, which can be a lot harder.
  • In The Wheel of Time, Aiel women in training to become Wise Ones eventually start getting more and more petty and demeaning tasks to do. This is meant to apply the trope; the last thing a prospective Wise One needs before she can take the final step is to get enough gumption to stand up and say enough; you're not ready until you tell them you're ready.

    Live-Action TV 
  • On 30 Rock, Kenneth of all people takes it upon himself to push new guy Danny Baker to anger so that he doesn't get stepped on by Tracy and Jenna.
  • Alphas plays with this in a very complicated way. When Bill trains with Kat in the second season, her training is mostly based around getting him to relax so that he can access his superstrength without having to force himself to get angry. The reason why this isn't a straight reverse example is that it's strongly implied that the reason why he had to get angry in the past was down to inhibitions and guilt about being violent, and that the training has also reduced his inhibitions about violence in a way that might not be entirely positive.
  • Buffyverse:
    • In Buffy the Vampire Slayer'''s "Get It Done" Buffy has to do this with both with vampire Spike (after he got a soul) and witch Willow (after briefly turning evil at the end of the previous season).
    • On the Angel episode "Release", Wesley knows Faith is holding back; he taunts her over her past misdeeds, calling her a sick rabid dog who should have been put down years ago Faith grabs the shotgun off Wes and goes to hit him with it.
    Wesley: See, that wasn't so hard, was it? (Faith glares) It's what you'll need to beat him.
  • Doctor Who: In "The Daleks", one of the Doctor's companions does this to the Thals to show them there are some things they're willing to fight over. The Thaals had previously been willing to be exterminated by the Daleks rather than break their pacifist ways.
  • The "bad outcome" of this occurs in an episode of Farscape, "That Old Black Magic". Zhaan must revive her old sadistic anarchist ways in order to defeat Maldis. It takes her several episodes to fully regain her self-control.
    • In one fourth season episode, where an evil spider alien stole the most important aspects of the main cast's personalities (John's determination, Aeryn's self-control, Chiana's sex drive, Rygel's greed, D'argo's anger), Chiana proves it by trying to teach D'argo anger again by beating him up. It doesn't work, which is a really big problem.
  • Star Trek: The Original Series: In "This Side of Paradise", Kirk has to anger up Spock (who's on the feelgood spores) and then let himself get smacked around by an enraged Vulcan until he gets it all out of his system.

  • Dead Ringers: Angela Rayner tries to get Sir Keir Starmer angry, but all her efforts to get him "aggy" fail, as there's no scenario she can imagine that provokes anything beyond the mildest finger-wagging... until she threatens to muss up his hair.

    Video Games 
  • Melus Petilius in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, a local hero, swore to never pick up a weapon after his wife's death of fever and blamed himself for it. In order to change his mind, you must give him a cursed mace from Molag Bal and provoke him to attack you. Once you're almost dead, Molag Bal will reward you his mace, and Petilius will be stricken with grief, believing that he killed you.
  • Jade Empire allows an evil character to do this to Dawn Star.
  • This is part of Master Xehanort's plan in Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep. After seeing Terra lose his cool during the Mark of Mastery Exam he sets up a plan. After disappearing he sets up an encounter with Maleficent to make his friends question his hold over the darkness. Afterwards Terra is convinced to hunt down Vanitas and stop the darkness in his own way knowing his friends would not understand. During this Xehanort sets up the climax. By setting him up to defeat Master Eraqus, the last thing that would stop him and throw Terra off the slippery slope at the same time. Terra loses it and defeats the Corrupt master, however all had gone according to plan for him, Terra had lost himself to the darkness and he was then ready for Xehanort's Grand Theft Me.
    • Of course, this plan works a bit too well. Terra's rage is so great that it animates his armor and gives him the will to resist Xehanort's possession, allowing him to fight back on a physical and metaphysical level.
  • Planescape: Torment: The Nameless One can teach an NPC how to get angry. The goal is to get her annoyed enough at her co-workers to gossip about them, though. It's a notable Funny Moment in a game that was already full of them since she's The Pollyanna- you have to start by getting her to "practice" insulting you, which she does by first telling you that she thinks that you're a less than perfectly wonderful person, then working herself into a full-on scenery chewing rant. The Nameless One is a touch concerned by the end of it.
  • Sword of the Stars: The second variant describes the training of Black Swimmers. The Liir are a species of Empaths who are pacifistic as a result, but because they need to defend themselves somehow a special caste of volunteers known as the Black Swimmers keep them safe by teaching themselves how to hate and kill. Black Swimmers are basically irredeemably Ax-Crazy by Liir standards and both sides are all too aware of this, but are nonetheless necessary for the race as a whole to survive. Their Initiation Ceremony involves 'drowning' the aspirant in liquid oxygen until they black out and abandon all hope.
  • Trials of Mana: This is the point of Kevin's beginning plot. He's a human-beastman hybrid, but his gentle nature is akin to his human mother's and he dislikes the violent beastmen. The Beast King hires Goremand to use his magic in a way that will force the beastman blood in Kevin to awaken, which happens when Goremand causes Kevin's best friend, a wolf cub called Karl, to attack him. Kevin turns into his full-fledged beastman form and kills Karl. Kevin vows revenge on Goremand and the Beast King for Karl's death.
  • Phantasy Star IV: The main character can go to the Anger Tower and learn, arguably, the most powerful technique in the game, which happens to be fueled by anger; this trope comes into play when Re-Faze puts Chaz to a Secret Test of Character: forcing him to confront and then kill a specter of his deceased mentor and surrogate mother, and then taunt him for his pain after realizing it was an illusion, then offer to teach him the Forbidden technique to taunt him with how incredibly powerful it would be.
  • Advance Wars: Days of Ruin: The Beast does this to Will in order to make him a satisfying opponent. His method of doing so? Killing civilians. It works well enough that the Beast is never seen again after that mission (presumed dead based on Caulder's lines).
  • Star Wars:
  • Namco High: the Meowkie path involves helping her deal with anger in a healthier fashion than repressing it and pretending she never experiences it. Then, during the final battle against Evil Namco High, she deals with it in very cathartic fashion by shredding the evil robots.
  • Murray attempts to teach Bentley in Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves how to be angry in their efforts to scare out the locals in a local bar. Needless to say, it doesn't work
    Bentley: I'm not sure I can do it. How do you get angry?
    Murray: Find the match deep inside you: light it, and let the fire burn up your guts AND BOIL YOUR BLOOD!
    Sly: Uh, yeah, that's kinda what I do too...
  • Guild Wars 2: Quaggans are pacifistic fish/manatee people generally too shy and timid to even defend themselves in the face of aggression from just about every violent faction in Tyria. Except when they get really angry. When that happens, a Quaggan will turn into an armored, fanged monstrosity that tends to wipe the floor with any threat in the vicinity in very short order. Of course, since Quaggans are so good at repressing any violent urges they might feel, quite a few of them require the player character's help to get into a fighting mood...
  • Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade: The young orphan Lugh is The Pollyanna, cheerful and kind to everyone he meets, and his childhood friends say that he's too nice to fight on a battlefield. Lugh, however, is driving himself forward with his hatred of the country that destroyed their orphanage — as he says to a Bern defector, anger is a better motivator than sadness, and he has to stay angry until the war ends so he can survive.
  • Mortal Kombat 1: Raiden's tower ending reveals that his temperament as a Humble Hero is actually one of the more subtle changes he received from Liu Kang beyond the more obivous change of being reborn as a mortal. Raiden's narration explains that this was to prevent the kind of anger and wrath that gave rise to Dark Raiden, and goes on to explain that while he understands the reasons this was done, he disagrees with the act. He has taken up training with Scorpion and the Shirai Ryu to learn how to channel that anger in case he might one day need the edge such rage can bring.

    Web Animation 
  • Red vs. Blue:
    • Caboose (a very nice, but exceptionally dumb member of Blue Team) is possessed by the A.I. O'Malley. Later, Caboose and Sarge are fighting two armies of flag-worshipping zealots. Caboose claims that "O'Malley taught me how to be mean"; by concentrating on things that make him angry (red bull, kittens with spikes on them), he proceeds to go crazy and wipe out both teams (scaring one poor fellow so badly that he though Caboose was the Flag-Worshipper version of The Antichrist); before waking up with no recollection of his actions.
    • Caboose never really displayed that sort of capability afterwards. Until Episode 21 of Season 10. When facing an army of Tex copies, Church needs Caboose to get angry; and Caboose reveals that he forgot how. Church helps him remember.

    Web Comics 
  • Related variation in Casey and Andy, where Jen has to teach Quantum Cop how to lie. This pays off in the Grand Finale.
  • Because angels and demons in Devil May Care can only impart their divine advice to their charges if they genuinely mean what they say, the ill-tempered Valeria can only have an effect on the people she gives advice too when she's screaming it in a rage. This is demonstrated when she yells at Rangi that he should stop being an Extreme Doormat and that he should stand up for himself, only for Len (an elderly charity-worker they were in charge of) to suddenly become assertive and stand up for a coworker being harassed by a group of hoodlums that has been harassing them.
  • Gabe in Penny Arcade uses this and Training from Hell to train his Pokémon. He openly states that he trains them to hate, and that translates into victory.
  • Tower of God: Bam, for the life of him, could not conceive any reason why people would fight. Rachel asked him what he'd do if somebody hurt her. He then understands. Headon takes this to the next level when he tells Bam that he won't see Rachel ever again if he doesn't take that test. This is more a case of evoking Bam's greatest fear. Headon being Headon, he doesn't mention that Rachel is in an adjacent cavern watching them.
  • In the "That Which Redeems" arc of Sluggy Freelance, Torg tries this to multiple characters in the Dimension of Lame in order to get them to defend themselves against the demonic invasion. He fails; the people in the Do L are so pacifistic that even a character who would be Ax-Crazy in any other dimension can only manage to pound one demon on the foot with a hammer before breaking down into "My God, What Have I Done?"
  • In The Order of the Stick, when Belkar recovers from his coma, he and the cleric hired by them to contact Durkon (the same one who healed Belkar) cut their way to the front door killing the Thieves Guild members swarming the place. There they encounter Old Blind Pete who betrayed them. Due to his fake Character Development, instead of killing him, he leaves him to the cleric instead (who was Pete's childhood friend). The cleric hesitates, but gives in and kills Pete. He even delivers a Pre-Mortem One-Liner. Of course, Belkar being an Anti-Hero / Villain Protagonist, he is just happy to have made a heroic character more anti.
  • A villain in Super Stupor gets informed on just why convincing a Superhero that Thou Shalt Not Kill is a stupid moral is a bad idea.
    Punchline: When you were adding the numbers up, did you remember to carry the stupid?
    Anarch: Yes!
  • Oglaf features an eccentric swordmaster attempting to teach his apprentice this, believing that his rage will serve him well in the arena. His method? Well, you're really angry when you're looking at people who are out of your league, right? So obviously, you'd be most angry at someone whom you find deeply attractive. He gives his apprentice a picture of his opponent and tells him to masturbate to it until he finds his opponent attractive. It works: the moment the apprentice and his opponent enter the arena, they start making out.

    Web Original 
  • Explored in depth in Cobra Kai. Johnny's teachings bring out the inherent aggressiveness and machismo of his students, which dramatically boosts their confidence and ability to defend themselves... but also leads to them becoming increasingly cruel and callous. Of particular note is the scene when Johnny teaches Miguel to visualize the training dummy as his most hated enemy, which begins his transformation from timid loser to vengeful Bully Hunter.
  • SCP Foundation: One piece of advice given out by Agent Dimitri Arkadayevich Strelnikov in his helpful guide to integrating the Mobile Task Forces is to learn to hate the enemy. Go to the cafeteria and pick someone to hate, and practice hating them, and then you can [REDACTED].

    Western Animation 
  • Family Guy:
    • In "The Cleveland-Loretta Quagmire", Loretta cheats on Cleveland with Quagmire because he's been so passionless toward her, his response makes it sound like he doesn't even care. Peter decides to teach Cleveland to get angry over it, which results in him getting in a murderous rage directed at Quagmire. After realizing he shouldn't resort to violence against a friend, Cleveland mostly goes back to being his old self, but is able to express his anger at Loretta, which later led to them divorcing.
    • In "Patriot Games", Peter tries to do this with a team of stereotypical British boarding school types. In a deleted scene, he hits on the solution of showing them the American version of The Office.
  • Storm Hawks has Junko pose as a wrestler to get the team into the Cyclonian's enemy base. Since he's normally a Gentle Giant, Piper uses a hypnosis crystal to give him a confidence boost. She then gives it to Finn along with instructions to only use it sparingly, along with the code phrase to turn off the conditioning should an emergency arise. Finn of course uses it so strongly Junko actually believes he is the Masked Masher and can't recognize his friends. It all comes to a head when Master Cyclonis puts them all in a cage match against the Brainwashed and Crazy Junko. Luckily Piper manages to remind Finn of the code phrase.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender:
    • The unscrupulous General Fong combines this with Die or Fly to awaken and exploit the Avatar State in Aang, who at that point had only entered the Avatar State in times of extreme distress. After trying in vain with tactics like scary pranks and super-caffeinated tea, the increasingly erratic general and his soldiers resort to lethal earthbending attacks in the hopes of sending Aang into an Unstoppable Rage. Fong finally succeeds by briefly burying Aang's friend Katara alive, but when Aang returns to normal, he and his friends want nothing to do with such a reckless man. The general's soldiers let the kids go because even they're shocked at how far Fong went.
    • Toph, due to Personality Powers, has to teach Aang to use the head-on, straightforward approach of earthbending instead of his dodging, nimble approach with Airbending. Her Drill Sergeant Nasty tactics involve taking his bag of food and stealing his staff to make him angry enough to stand up to her.
      Toph: Rock is a stubborn element. If you're going to move it, you've gotta be like a rock yourself.
      • Do note that unlike modern Firebending, Earthbending does not require rage to actively use. However Aang being a 12 Year Old Pacifist Monk hadn't learned proper and healthy assertiveness at this point. The lessons are more about Aang learning to stand up for himself and becoming unyielding, but Aang didn't really get it until Toph started to intentionally tick him off. Once he gets through the episode and learns how to Earthbend he becomes noticeably more assertive over the rest of the series.
    • The Fire Nation promoted a style of firebending based on rage, applying this trope on a national scale to cultivate more intense martial power among warriors with bending abilities. Once the Troubled, but Cute Zuko starts to mellow out later in the series, he can't draw on his inner fury anymore and has to learn an older approach to firebending that draws on inner warmth and vitality of a less hostile nature.
  • Accidentally invoked by Megatron on Beast Wars when Scorpinok's mind-altering bug took away Optimus Primal's self-control and inner peace. His reasoning was that Optimus' calm exterior was a façade for a cowardly streak, but in fact it was a safety mechanism to control his Unstoppable Rage. With his inner peace removed, Optimus goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge, taking out the entire Predacon force single-handed before the Maximals manage to remove the bug that was slowly killing him. Beware the Nice Ones indeed.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants:
    • In "Walking Small", Plankton tries to teach SpongeBob to be more aggressive. He pretends to want to teach him to stick up for himself, but in reality, it's a ploy to make SpongeBob drive everyone away from Goo Lagoon so he can build a new Chum Bucket. It works, but after SpongeBob realises what he's done and that Plankton has used him, he decides to be "aggressively nice" to bring everyone back.
    • The episode "The Abrasive Side" explores this concept: SpongeBob gets an "alternative side" so that it could help him learn to say no to others, except that side has a personality of its own.
  • Dexter, from Dexter's Laboratory. In one episode, Dee Dee encourages Dexter to see how good it feels to break stuff, but he goes mad and Dee Dee becomes terrified of how destructive and psychotic he became, and she gets him to revert back, apologizing and admitting that maybe it's better if he remains emotionless.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: Iron Will, a minotaur self-help guru in the episode "Putting Your Hoof Down", teaches this as a technique of getting one's way. It particularly applies when the student is Fluttershy. It works too well.
  • Hey Arnold!: In the episode "Hall Monitor," after Helga decides to give up hall monitoring, she selects Phoebe as the next hall monitor. Unlike the strict and brash Helga (as one should expect from her) Phoebe has a hard time getting the students to listen to her, getting shoved around, ignored and bullied due to her passive, soft-spoken and quiet nature when trying to do her job. So Helga decides to toughen her up giving her advice on how to be more authoritative, which results in a more confident but controlling and even bitchy to the point she actually ends up being worse than Helga. She sends students to detention for even the smallest things, including Helga herself. All the kids start asking for the nice, quiet girl back, even Helga knew she created a monster. Helga talks to her and Phoebe realizes that she didn't want the kids to have another Helga and decides she doesn't want to be a bossy control freak anymore if that's the only way to get respect from people. Hilariously enough, she even looks at a mirror and sees a Helga with black hair and glasses staring back at her, seeing what she had become and what other students saw.
  • In Codename: Kids Next Door, Numbuh Four is trapped on an island with a giant rainbow monkey who would rather hug and kiss him than pummel him. Numbuh Four then tries to teach the monkey how to act ferocious, but becomes increasingly frustrated when it doesn't seem to work. After Numbuh Four is finally rescued, the giant rainbow monkey follows them home to get him back, and is now extremely pissed.
    Numbuh Four: Maybe he was paying attention to me.
  • In The Simpsons episode "Hurricane Neddy", Ned Flanders suffers a mental breakdown in which he furiously chewed out Springfielders as a whole, and checks into a mental hospital. His psychiatrist Dr. Foster realizes the best way to help him out of his breakdown is to have him intentionally angered by the person who annoys him most, namely Homer. He is deemed cured when he's able to openly admit that he hates his parents.
  • In Dan Vs. "Anger Management", Chris and Dan are forced into anger management after one of Dan's criminal revenge schemes. Chris is told by the counsellor that he represses his anger too much, which is just as bad as being unable to control it. Chris tries to become more openly angry, but at the end of the episode he ends up getting scared out of it, and everything goes back to normal.
  • This is how the South Park dodgeball team overwhelms its opposition and beats the Chinese dodgeball team: sending cockney stereotype Pip into a rage by calling him French. Even Pip hates the French.
  • Phineas and Ferb has a variant when the resident Bollywood Nerd Baljeet accidentally signs up for a summer music class but can't conjure up the passion to rock out, preferring to channel his feelings into schoolwork. He eventually finds out that the programme was just for fun and not an actual academic class, which drives him into such a rage that he performs an aggressive rock number about how cheated he feels that he made all that effort and won't even get a grade to show for it. That's ironically what it takes.
  • In Robot and Monster, Monster starts sleep-raging, a sign that he might be bottling up his anger. So, Robot takes him to an "Anger Management Class". That is, a class that teaches people who bottle up their anger to let it out.
  • One of the core conflicts of Steven Universe: Future is the titular character suddenly (And uncontrollably) discovering destructive powers related to his unresolved feelings of frustration and anger regarding his traumatic childhood and hang-ups concerning his mother. After everything and everyone else in his life fails to help him in learning how to get a reign on his powers, he ends up turning to Jasper for help, who promptly spends her time brutalizing and antagonizing Steven as her method of training. In the end Steven does gain better control over his powers however and eventually challenges Jasper to a sparring match where she further eggs him on to unload all his rage and power on her. It's only through sheer dumb luck that she can live to regret doing so. And it gets even worse as this makes Steven bottle up his emotions even more, to the point where it all explodes and turns him into a pink Kaiju.

Alternative Title(s): Teach Her Anger