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Threatening Shark
aka: Everythings Worse With Sharks

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Nope, not safe to go back in the river.
"Everyone's always in favour of saving Hitler's brain. But when you put it in the body of a Great White shark, ooh, suddenly you've gone too far!"
Professor Farnsworth, Futurama
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Want to make a (usually) aquatic situation a dangerous nightmare? One way is sharks.

Trapped in the middle of the ocean with no realistic way of making it to civilization, likely go crazy and dehydrate in a couple of days? That takes too long? No worries, the ocean is infested with sharks just waiting to devour you. Has the Big Bad got you? He won't shoot, that'd be too fast, he'll instead lower you into a Shark Pool.

If you're swimming or anywhere near water, the last thing you want to hear is "shark". In fictionland, or rather fiction-ocean, many sharks are unstoppable sea-monster killing machines which devour everything in sight: fish, seals, people... license plates, car tires, suits of armour, car parts, severed human limbs. Sometimes they'll even attack ships: that's how badass they are. Most animals eat to live, but sharks live to eat. Sharks are the ultimate Rule of Cool. Perhaps it's because it's how their mouths are lined with literally hundreds of teeth, or because they can smell your blood from miles away like a hungry vampire, or because they can sense your bioelectricity meaning you can never hide from them. Perhaps it's because they have changed very little in the millions of years they existed. It doesn't matter, they're the most badass animal that isn't extinct or made up. If they ever find a way to take to the land or air, it would surely be the end of us all. Really, if Sand Is Water, expect Land Sharks.

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(Cool as they are, there are still ways to enhance them.)

Sub-Trope of Fiendish Fish. A Super-Trope to Megalodon and Shark Man. Often first seen as a tell-tale Shark Fin of Doom.

Compare Sea Monster (for other scary things in the ocean), Never Smile at a Crocodile and Pike Peril (for the rivers-and-lakes counterpart), Monstrous Seal, and Bears Are Bad News. You can relax if there are Devious Dolphins though, since they make perfect rivals to these sharks.

Contrast Shamu Fu, the one situation where things may legitimately get better when you add a shark. Do not confuse with tropes for metaphorical sharks, such as Loan Shark, or media references like Jump the Shark.

Ironically, sharks are nowhere near as dangerous as the stereotype makes them out to be. Hundreds of people have been attacked and killed over the last few centuries. That sounds like a lot, but put it compared to the tens of thousands of fatalities to large felines, bears, wolves, and plenty of domestic animals and it becomes positively puny. A vast majority of shark species are harmless to humans, with just a handful of species that have been documented to kill, and even then only two (bull sharks and oceanic whitetip sharks) are consistently dangerous. Even the infamous Great White, a shark specially evolved to feed off mammals, are remarkably good tempered and ignore people on all but freak incidents. The rate of shark attacks and deaths average out to about a couple of deaths a year globally, making them less dangerous than elephants, jellyfish, domestic animals like horses and dogs, and the common staircase. In fact, some sharks are surprisingly intelligent and social animals, rather than the mindless carnivores they're portrayed as, and they've taken on a diversity of habitats and body designs beyond the usual torpedo shape.

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Examples:

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    Anime & Manga 
  • Agito from Air Gear has sharks as his animal motifs. He's brutal in battle.
  • Bleach has Tier Harribel, whose visual theme is that of a shark. Like Kisame above, she is also a contrast to the usual shark tropes - Harribel is a Mama Bear Martial Pacifist who is willing to die for her Fracción.
  • In Blue Submarine No. 6, not only is there an antagonist who is a shark-person but it seems as though his main mode of transportation is built on a WHALE SHARK.
  • The first half of the first episode of Future Boy Conan has Conan doing battle with a huge shark with a scarred snout that has been eating his and his grandfather’s fish supply, so he decides to put a stop to it once and for all.
  • BrokenGao in GaoGaiGar FINAL forms the right shoulder of Genesic GaoGaiGar and represents destruction in all its glory.
  • Godzilla: Singular Point redesigns the sea serpent kaiju Manda to feature a goblin shark-like face instead of the traditional Asian dragon look.
  • In Guardian Fairy Michel, since nature is out of balance, sharks attack Donna and her son Will in episode 3.
  • The manga Gyo is about fishes with mechanical legs that crawl out of the ocean and invade the city, infecting the people with poisonous gasses. Needless to say, there is a shark involved, and that's when things get really bad. There is a scene where a shark kicks down a door, with a big GASHUNK sound in the English version. This has become a Motivator meme: "GASHUNK: Clearly the sound a shark makes when it kicks down a door."
  • Hayate the Combat Butler: While Sakuya's Titanic was sinking, an already-wounded Hayate swam in the frigid water to push a raft holding Isumi to safety. Then the sharks attacked him.... But all bets were off when he saw one of them attack Nagi.
  • In Heavy Object the Capitalist Enterprise is ostensibly restoring the shark population around Hawaii as part of a business venture. The truth is this is being done to increase the number of shark attacks and damage the tourism industry, which is being used by spies from the other nations. The Enterprise also uses the situation to engineer "shark attacks" on inconvenient people.
  • Iron Wok Jan: The semifinal battle of the second Tournament Arc has shark as the theme ingredient. The pre-prepared shark meat is unusable. What do you do? Jump into the tank of live sharks also prepared, kick a shark out, and butcher it in front of the audience. Of course after Jan and the rival from China jump into the shark tank to secure their ingredient, one of the other contestants realizes that it would be easier to just smash the glass walls of the shark tank to drain all the water out of it.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
    • In Part 3, Jotaro Kujo saves the little girl Anne from a shark, using his Stand, Star Platinum, to sock it out of the water in a single punch.
    • Part 5, the situation is played straight with Squalo's Stand, Clash, which that takes the form of a metallic shark with three eyes. Its power is teleport from one body of water (or other mostly-water liquid like a bowl of soup or glass of wine), capture its targets, and drag them along on the teleporting trips (where, if Squalo isn't stopped quickly enough, they'll drown). What's more, Clash is supplemented by Talking Head, the Stand of his partner, Tiziano, which can force a person to only tell lies, so even if you see Clash, you can't tell anyone.
  • Unabara Bancho from Kongoh Bancho is a giant Megalodon wearing a Bancho uniform who at one point tries to devour the protagonists but is fished by Gouriki Bancho and beached. He's a gluttonous, sentient beast who has an army of swordfish obeying his orders.
  • Played with in Kyo Kara Maoh! Yuuri is transported into the middle of an ocean and appears to be under attack by a shark. It turns out that sharks in the other world are friendly vegetarians.
  • Shark Fujishiro from My Bride is a Mermaid is a literal shark with a human guise from a group of mermaid Yakuza. His motto being that all problems can be solved by eating the cause of the chaos. He's constantly trying to eat the main character of the series, Nagasumi. The fact he can turn into a shark on land doesn't help matters much either.
  • The Mysterious Cities of Gold: It wasn't enough that Esteban, Zia, Mendoza, Sancho and Pedro were stranded on a flimsy raft in the middle of the ocean. They had to be attacked by sharks as well.
  • Hoshigaki Kisame from Naruto is a human with shark-like traits and has an affinity for attacks that use water including several that blasts the opponent with water shaped like at least one shark. He also has a shark-like sword, which he can merge with to become a full blown half-man half-shark creature.

    Unlike the animal stereotype, though, Kisame seems rather played straight. He seems to have a good sense of humor, is definitely the most mentally sound of the Akatsuki, and has a certain joie-de-vivre that his partner needed to pick up on (and on the note of his partner... Kisame seems to have been more of a father toward Itachi than Fugaku). In general, he is a polite, intelligent, and a very social man... however, his mere presence seems to announce "You lose," with natural chakra reserves rivaling the Jinchuriki, who host 100-meter-tall chakra demons. Until even more fittingly he meets Killer Bee... who has octopus traits.

    Kisame's shark appearance takes on even greater meaning when you consider his backstory. He kills all his comrades so that they won't get captured and interrogated by Ibiki, then kills his superior, the previous wielder of Samehada, for selling him out. After being paired with Akatsuki, he notes that they were put together because both had killed their comrades, noting how sharks' offspring kill and eat each other.
  • The Beach Chapter in Negima! Magister Negi Magi involves The Hero being attacked by a shark... that knows kung fu. It turns out to be his martial arts teacher Kuu Fei in a stuffed shark that she borrowed from the hotel lobby, along with Natsumi in a shark costume in a ploy to get Negi and Asuna back together by placing him in a perceived danger to be rescued.
  • Inverted in Nichijou. Ask the Professor, and she'll tell you Everything's Better with Sharks.
  • One Piece:
    • Of all the Fish-men, the shark ones are definitely the worst to run into. Arlong, the main antagonist of the East Blue arc, is a sawshark. And a Loan Shark to boot.
    • Jimbei who is definitely making everything worse for the World Government by teaming up with Luffy and Crocodile is a whale shark. He soon inverts this trope, summoning a whole school of friendly, grinning whale sharks to carry the escaped prisoners to safety. Not much of a surprise, since whale sharks can't eat mammals — they feed on krill and tiny fish, instead.
    • Now things are even worse with Hody Jones' crew, which has four different shark Fishmen, Jones himself being a great white shark.
    • Add on Captain of the Flying Dutchman, Van Der Decken IX, who is a bullhead shark. Not as fearsome as a great white, but he seems to be the main villain of this arc.
    • The trope is also inverted by Prince Fukaboshi, a shark merman (unspecified, which is odd considering Oda's penchant for classifying his mer/fishpeople) who the Strawhats assume is there to give them trouble and run away... when he intended to personally invite them to the royal palace and give Luffy a message from Jimbei.
    • Also averted with Madame Sharley, who is very polite and calm. As long as you're not rude around her. This is even more notorious because she is the younger sister of Arlong, of all merpeople.
    • Also inverted again by Megalo, a friendly pet shark of the Neptune royal family.
  • Ranma ½:
    • In the early manga, Ranma and Cologne fight at the beach and in the ocean. When Cologne touches down lightly on the surface of the water, everyone is astonished at how an Old Master can find footing even on a floating twig. Turns out she landed on top of a great white shark, which she somehow commandeers to do her bidding. It doesn't end well for the shark when Ranma goes into the Cat-Fist, though. The anime, for some reason, traded the beach fight (the final part of the Phoenix Pill storyline) for a fight in the mountains; apparently, they figured Cologne using telekinesis to fling showers of ice boulders would be more dramatic.
    • Both the manga and an anime episode have Akane accepting Principal "Nutjob" Kunô's offer to teach her how to swim. Plan 1: strap a big boulder to her back and toss her into the pool... which is currently home to a four-meter-long shark.
  • Reborn! (2004): Apparently inspired by the pirates of How to Kill a Mockingbird, Squalo rides a flying burning shark as his box weapon. Seriously.
  • Viral from Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann is a Beastman that Gainax has explicitly stated is a shark with feline genetics. Besides his claws and cat eyes, he's got a mouth full of shark teeth. They grow back if they're pulled out. His smiles tend to make viewers rather uneasy.
  • Toriko has a plethora of unusual and powerful shark animals in the world, including the Gator Shark (a fresh-water giant shark with a crocodile-like mouth), Great Leg (amphibious shark with four legs), Warner Shark (a shark with teeth so strong they can bite through a submarine), Sand Shark (sand-swimming shark), Fly Shark (giant sharks able to fly with their fin-like wings), Big Bang Shark (a flying, pitch black Animalistic Abomination), the Denshark (a shark/train hybrid) and the Raizame (an uber-powerful giant shark with electrical fangs).
  • Averted in Transformers: Robots in Disguise with Sky-Byte. While one of the Predacons, Sky-Byte is an aspiring poet and quite fond of humans — between these and various comedic appearances, he's something of an Ensemble Dark Horse. He's also the only one of the Predacons or Decepticons to escape at the end of the series, so everything works out for him.
  • Ryoga "Shark" Kamishiro of Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL, introduced as the school bully and a major Jerkass. He also uses a Shark deck. Later inverted after he joins Yuma's group.

    Arts 

    Asian Animation 
  • In Happy Heroes, one of the many recurring monsters of the week, introduced in Season 2 episode 50, is a flying shark. In his first appearance, he manages to eat quite a few of the city folk, including Smart S. and Careful S. (and by extension the latter's duplicates) before he spits them all out after Happy S. hits him in a weak point.

    Card Games 

    Comic Books 
  • The old British comic Action had a serial called Hook Jaw. The title character was a great white shark. None of the other characters lasted more than one story... Well, except for the token good human in the first story, though even he got eaten alive about two-thirds of the way through the second story.
  • The first album in the French comic The Adventures of Jérôme Moucherot revolves around a giant shark who lives in a bizarro dimension in between the walls of apartment buildings. Yes, he can "swim" on the surface of walls or ceilings with his fin being the only sign that there's a huge friggin' shark stalking you in your living room. He gets in the protagonist's crosshairs when he eats his son and he has to follow the shark into its own dimension to get him back.
  • In Alan Ford, recurring popular villain Superciuk seemingly meets his doom when he's swallowed whole by a shark... but he manages to survive, leading to several sightings of a "talking dogfish" begging for Barbera. The shark is eventually captured and confined in a pool, which allows Superciuk to get out.
  • Aquaman can command anything in the ocean. If he's feeling generous, he'll just send dolphins, whales, and giant squid to beat you up and ensnare you. If he's not, he breaks out the sharks. Get him in a bad mood, and you can have sharks and Eldritch Abominations up your ass.
  • Batman
    • Batman even keeps Shark-Repellent Bat-Spray in his utility belt!
    • There's also the Batman villain Great White, a former "white collar criminal". It started as a nickname due to his shady financial practices. However he gets sent to Arkham and, well... let's just say he ends up with an Astonishingly Appropriate Appearance.
  • In Cavewoman: Deep Water, Meriem is attacked (while naked) by a megalodon. She kills it by swimming inside its gills and destroying them.
  • A story arc of Fallen Angel has a shark goring Jude's leg... in the middle.
  • In The Further Adventures of Indiana Jones #20, the villain attempts to escape from Indy by jumping overboard and swimming away. However, he inadvertently swims into chummed water (created when he threw a bucket of chum at Indy at missed) and his devoured by sharks attracted by the chum.
  • The Guardian Project: Averted with the Shark, who was one of the good guys and can summon sharks.
  • One of the "possible" stories included in Hack/Slash: Trailers feature a slasher shark named Blackfin, who was big enough to devour the great white mistaken for him in one bite.
  • German comic Haiopeis.
  • Indiana Jones and the Tomb of the Gods: Oh, so the Big Bad Nazi has Indy at gunpoint in a seized ship miles away from the nearest coast. If he kills him there nobody will know. But does he shoot him? Naaah, that would be too easy. Better drop him in a lifeboat with no oars to starve or die of dehydration. But wait, that would be too slow. Shoot the boat with a machine gun so it'll sink sooner or later. Enough? Nope, make a cut on the Girl of the Week's arm and kick her into the water so sharks will smell her blood and do a Zerg Rush to the area. And if loads and loads of sharks aren't scary enough, don't worry, a massive Great White will show up to teach them the job.
  • Iron Man, or rather Tony Stark seeing he was out of his armour, was dumped into shark-infested waters once. He proceeded to fight a great white, bite into it to get it to start bleeding, which drew the other sharks in order to attack it.
  • The Punisher
    • Barracuda from MAX series, a badass hitman, manages to win a brutal fight with the Punisher. Instead of just shooting him, Barracuda throws him into the ocean with a bleeding gangster and a Great White.
    • An earlier one-shot had a villain attempt to shoot Castle, who was standing in front of an Aquarium shark tank. Castle dived out of the way, and somehow, the handgun bullets managed to shatter the tank and send an angry shark right at the gangster.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics):
    • Razor the Shark is hot-headed and a little bloodthirsty, but he's one of the good guys; being a loyal bodyguard and friend to Meropis' priestess Coral the Betta and has an almost brotherly bond with her apprentice Pearly the Manta Ray. To cement this, his pet Chao, Crusher, takes after his personality, something Chao only do to those who show them love and care.
    • Razor's sister Blade. She's cold, blunt, and generally rude and unpleasant to be around (her brother, captain, and father figure being the exceptions), she has no regard for others' well-being and openly admits she enjoys stealing from and hurting people for the sense of triumph and glory.
  • Superboy (1994) gives us the character King Shark, the son of the Hawaiian shark god (we're assuming Ka-moho-ali'i). He's capable of regeneration, which is good because Jeanette of Secret Six breaks his jaw and rips off his arm.
  • In the final story of the Bronze Age reality from the Superman story arc of 1998, The Dominus Effect, Superman deals with the threat of a menacing shark in Metropolis' waters, only to find out that it was a mechanical shark and it was being controlled by the Prankster.
  • Tintin: Subverted in Red Rackham's Treasure, where Professor Calculus builds a small submarine in the shape of a shark. Haddock first sees it when trying to take a potshot at a bunch of circling sharks.
  • In Watchmen, the cast-away of the comic within a comic Tales of the Black Freighter suffers from this. Not only does he have to escape from the island in a raft made of the bodies of his partners, but he also has to fight several sharks.
  • Water Baby revolves around this. Brody was a surfer, one day she was riding the waves and a shark confused her with something edible. It bit off her leg up to the knee and went his merry way... while Brody was left bleeding her life out, she got better but now she has nightmares of sharks, and now so do you.
  • Wonder Woman:
    • Volume 1: In the Wonder Girl Impossible Tale in #111 a massive shark tries to take a bite out of Diana while she's floating on her back near Paradise Island. Renno is able to warn her of its approach, and get knocked for a loop by the shark himself, in time for her to dodge it, grab it by the tail and toss it away.
    • In Vol 3, the island of Themiscyra is protected by Megalodons, who are good and even offer themselves up for a Heroic Sacrifice to save the island on one occasion.
    • Sensational Wonder Woman: Giganta finds herself being attacked by the Megalodons that patrol Themyscira's waters during a battle with Diana in The Queen's Hive.
  • In an issue of X-Force, an alternate universe version of Nightcrawler confronted the Blob from the same universe, during a battle in an underwater base. While at first, the Blob looked like winning, Nightcrawler got some outside help - he teleported a passing shark into the Blob's stomach.
  • X-Men
    • Cyclops has fought sharks on occasion. Great whites, naturally.
    • The short-lived X-Men character Thunderbird III had very few badass moments, but one of those was when he fought and killed a great white shark all by himself.

    Comic Strips 

    Fairy Tales 
  • In the Fairy Tale An Impossible Enchantment, the fairy queen summons two thousand sharks to guard the tower where Princess Graziella is imprisoned - to prevent anyone from approaching.

    Fan Works 
  • Inverted for Diesel, Mariana Mag's shark-dolphin hybrid that she cares for in her aquarium in All Mixed Up!. Although he gets a little rough at times, he is very friendly and loves to play, and is also very fond of Mariana, who loves him back.
  • Late in Christian Humber Reloaded, the main character meets a shark/human hybrid named Chridion. Chridion manages the improbable feat of gaining the upper hand against the God-Mode Sue protagonist for most of the fight, largely due to his superior speed and Shoulder Cannon, only conceding defeat when Vash powers up enough to almost destroy the world.
  • A Diplomatic Visit: In chapter 8 of the third story, Diplomacy Through Schooling, it's mentioned that one mistook Luna for a seal when she and Pharynx were out for a midnight swim during their honeymoon. Luckily, it backed off when it got biffed on the nose. It's further noted that the seapony kingdoms have also had issues with them in the past.
  • From Divine Blood, Naiki Satomi, the daughter of Ranma Saotome and Poseidon has an affinity for sharks right down to a mouth full of sharp teeth. She is the most obviously reckless of the three Satomi siblings and, especially in early chapters, sometimes has a tendency to make situations worse by sheer accident. However, she is described as having a cute smile despite having a carnivore's dental work. In battle against her father, she summons a megalodon and a swarm of other sharks to fight him.
  • The library in Egg Belly has Book Sharks. They're kind of like bookworms, only they're sharks.
  • In Book 4 of Forged Destiny. Wouldn't you know it, the one time Jaune takes a dip in the ocean, he is surrounded by a shiver of sharks with one quickly latching onto his leg. Justified as they were drawn to the large number of bodies tied to the ocean floor and the one that grabbed him quickly pulled him to the surface, as it was asked to by Qrow, a Druid. All of the sharks then work together and attack the large Grimm that had knocked Jaune into the ocean to begin with.
  • A Growing Affection changes Kisame's back story to make him instead Jinchuriki of the Seven-Fins Shark and Samehada is made from a strip of the demon's skin.
  • Lincoln's Memories:
    • Discussed in "Bath Time" when Lynn Loud Jr. pretends her rubber shark is planning on eating Lincoln's rubber duck.
    • Discussed again in "The Ultimate Sand Castle" where Lucy wants to get bit by a shark so she can have a cool scar, and Lola and Lynn Sr. are afraid of being bit by a shark.
  • Prehistoric Earth: Squalicorax and megalodon are amongst the animals rescued for the titular zoo. And while not to the exaggerated degree featured in most examples, they both prove fairly dangerous animals for the rescue team and park staff to handle.
  • From Chapter 12 of Takamachi Nanoha Of 2814, there's Nanoha's "Bruce" construct, a giant hundred-meter long green shark with whirring chainsaw teeth and insides that look like a nightmare of spinning cutting rings.
  • The plot of the Star Wars: The Clone Wars fanfic By the Sea is set off by Cody getting bitten by a shark while fighting in against vicious enemies who use them as mounts. The shark nearly kills Cody and his people and loved ones give him up for dead as the ocean carries his unconscious body away to wash up on Obi-Wan's beach.

    Films — Animation 
  • Played with in Back to the Outback. While crossing the harbor to reach the city after escaping captivity, the group meets a great white shark named Jacinta, who is a Nice Girl that helps them by informing them of the Ugly Secret Society's existence and giving them a lift to the other side of the harbor. On the other hand, she doesn't deny Maddie's assumption of her having eaten more people than Maddie is capable of poisoning and accepts her self-given title of "the face of death".
  • Vector, the villain in Despicable Me, has a guard-shark.
  • Another one for sharks that don't eat everything in sight, Finding Nemo. Not quite vegetarians, it's hinted that they eat dolphins, and they have a "slip" every now and then and eat a fish. The heroes run into three, including one named Bruce, a Shout-Out to the Jaws prop.
    • Finding Dory averts this with Destiny, who is indeed a shark, a whale shark at that. She still has as big a mouth as, or maybe even bigger than, her fellow bretheren, yet is still non-threatening because she has no teeth. Also, in Real Life, whale sharks eat nothing bigger than a goldfish.
  • In James and the Giant Peach, there's a robot shark.
  • The Land Before Time V has a prehistoric shark — possibly a Ginsu shark — as a "swimming sharp tooth".
  • In The LEGO Movie, President Business' office is guarded by, amongst other things, sharks, lasers, and laser sharks. Also, one of the Master Builders throws a shark at Emmet when the latter's speech fails to rally the heroes. It chirps like a dolphin.
  • Lilo & Stitch: "Oh, look, a friendly little dolphin. They helped sailors during the war... It's a shark! It's a shark and it ain't friendly! Looks like a dolphin... Tricky fish! Tricky fish!"
  • Glut the Shark from The Little Mermaid (1989). He chases Ariel and Flounder through the ship wreck, determined to eat them both.
  • The sequel The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea has Morgana's minion, Undertow the giant tiger shark who spends most of the movie trapped in the body of a piranha thanks to King Triton's magic.
  • In Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa, Mort is chased by a shark. Through land. All the way into a volcano.
  • In the Pixar short Partly Cloudy (shown before Up), living clouds make human babies, puppies, kittens, etc., who are delivered by Delivery Storks. There's also a rain cloud who specializes in... slightly less adorable critters, and his stork seriously begins to regret their partnership when the rain cloud presents him with a model shark (which is bigger than the stork).
  • Sharks are the main antagonists in Seal Team (2021), playing the standard Carnivores Are Mean sthitck. Curiously, the movie plays with it by also introducing Dave the basking shark, which true to life is harmless but very much despised by everyone, and the credits semi-address the problems of shark depictions in media before devolving into a joke about Dave eating car tires.
  • Shark Tale, obviously by its name. Features a subversion of this trope though, a vegetarian shark who actually gets nauseated at the very taste of a fish.
  • Tintin animated film Tintin and the Lake of Sharks has, wait for it, a lake... full of sharks. Metaphorical ones, that is. It's actually a Balkan mountain lake. The villains' Underwater Base may also have a Shark Pool or two.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The TV Movie 12 Days of Terror is based on real events that happened in the summer of 1916 where seemingly the same shark attacked five swimmers in a series of shark attacks along the New Jersey coast and up a freshwater creek.
  • 2-Headed Shark Attack: Double trouble!
  • 47 Meters Down: Two sisters are trapped in a shark cage at the bottom of the ocean. With great white sharks circling nearby, they must fight to survive.
  • Ace Ventura: Pet Detective: Goes to a tank expecting to find the stolen dolphin. He instead finds a great white shark. Hilarity Ensues. Especially when he returns to the main hall via the bathroom, his clothes all torn and wet.
    Ace: "Do NOT go in there!"
  • The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl: Averted Trope. The sharks do briefly mention taking a bite out of Sharkboy when he becomes lost at sea but, once they realize that he's a friend, they raise him as one of their own.
  • Aquaman (2018) inverts this trope, as sharks are shown as war mounts and allies to the characters. In particular, a large shark rescues a young Arthur from some bullies when he's harassed at an aquarium.
  • Atomic Shark gives us one that boils the water, sets things on fire, and/or blows things up by its mere proximity.
  • Austin Powers Inter National Man Of Mystery: Dr. Evil wanted sharks, with Frickin' Laser Beams attached to their heads no less, but logistical problems meant he had to settle for ill-tempered, mutated sea bass. He gets his laser sharks by the third movie, though.
  • Bait 3D: A tsunami engulfs an Australian beach town, and a handful of survivors are trapped in an underground convenience store. Then they discover that a great white shark is there with them, which starts picking them off one by one.
  • Batman: The Movie: While investigating a yacht at sea, Batman is attacked by a shark. After he uses Bat Shark Repellent to make it let go of him, it falls into the water and explodes: one of the villains had planted a bomb in it.
  • The Beach: In this film, the seemingly idyllic youth community is revealed to be anything but when one of the members is gored by a shark.
  • Blue Water, White Death: This 1971 documentary, for its name alone.
  • Cyclone (1978): Zigzagged. Sharks show up three times in the 118 minute movie. The first time, one of them kills a man with injured legs who is drifting in the water but leaves everyone else alone. The second time, the survivors fish for the shark for food and injure it with their hook. When one of them falls into the water, he's in a hurry to get back aboard before the shark goes after him, but it doesn't seem to go after him. In the final scene, though, a school of sharks attack the drifting characters who are awaiting rescue and kill several of them even though none of them are bleeding at first.
  • Dark Tide: Features great white sharks
  • Deep Blue Sea: The only thing worse than sharks? Super-intelligent sharks. The scientists were extracting some kind of fluid from the sharks' brains for their research. They genetically modified them to grow larger brains so they could extract more fluid. Of course, larger brains also meant smarter sharks. Most notable is how the character played by none other than Samuel L. Jackson is eaten by one of these sharks while indoors. Notably, the sharks were explicitly mentioned to be mutated makos and not great whites.
  • Deep Blue Sea 2: Seems to follow the trend set by its predecessor, featuring mutated bull sharks instead of makos.
  • The second sequel, Deep Blue Sea 3, plays this straight with the genetically-engineered offspring of the previous film's shark. Interestingly, the film portrays this trio as unnaturally aggressive, while the ordinary sharks living in the area are accurately portrayed as animals with little interest in human divers. Then there is "Sally", a large female Great White the protagonist has spent years studying — while she makes a threatening dominance display at the beginning of the film, Sally later ends up saving Emma from an attacker.
  • Devil Fish is a bizarre aversion: The film seems to be aiming for this trope (it was originally titled Shark - Rosso nell'oceano and elsewhere Monster Shark) but fails seemingly due to the filmmakers' ignorance about what a shark is.
  • Flipper: The 1996 film features Scar, a ferocious Great Hammerhead (the largest variety of hammerhead shark) who lurks in the area, is rumored to have taken out a tourist boat, and shows up during the climax to threaten Sandy. Fortunately, Flipper (with help from his pod) is able to drive him away in time.
  • Ghost Shark: The ghost of a great white shark. That can appear in any body of water, no matter the size.
  • Great White: After the seaplane is sunk, the five passengers are stranded in a life raft being circled by a giant great white shark.
  • James Bond
  • Jaws is the Trope Codifier, to the point that it has inspired hundreds of attempts to capitalize off its critical acclaim and blockbuster status. Impressionable audiences feared it enough to significantly lower beach attendance that summer. Unfortunately, the film is often (incorrectly) blamed for inducing a Real Life, war of extermination against all sharks, but in truth sharks were drastically on decline for completely different reasons well before this movie was made. Though efforts have been done to reduce the stigma that is levied against sharks, the initial war upon a keystone species made the original writer, Peter Benchley, denounce the film as his Old Shame. He often stated in later years that he could never again write a book like Jaws, and he devoted much of his post-Jaws career to ocean conservation.
    • Needless to say, the sequels to Jaws all play this trope straight to ridiculous effect.
  • Jersey Shore Shark Attack: a parody of the TV series Jersey Shore... with sharks added. It has nothing to do with the actual Jersey Shore shark attacks of 1916 that inspired Jaws.
  • Jumper: One of the Jumpers, a.k.a Flashy Teleporters, assassinates the Paladins by dumping them at sea surrounded by sharks.
  • In Lady in Cement, sharks start circling the scuba diving Tony just as he finds Sandra Lomax's corpse in her Cement Shoes.
  • Lara Croft: Tomb Raider: Subverted/parodied in the second movie, where being surrounded by sharks, Lara Croft punches one in the nose and proceeds to ride it to the surface.
  • Lethal Weapon 4: Has caught a small shark (alive) while out fishing with the heroes. When their boat sinks, the shark escapes; rather than booking it for the horizon, as any sensible animal would do, its fin is shown lingering near the swimming characters to add menace to the scene.
  • Le Magnifique: This French movie, a parody of spy flicks, begins with a spy character "eaten by a shark while in a phone booth." Yes, that's how it is actually described in the movie. To be more specific, the phone booth was lifted up by a helicopter with the spy inside, dropped into the sea, and then a caged shark was freed to attack him while still in the phone booth. Hard to top as a needlessly complicated execution method...
  • Mako The Jaws Of Death: A telepath uses sharks to kill anyone who threatens the sharks themselves.
  • Malibu Shark Attack: Combined Disaster Movie (tsunami) with Seldom-Seen Species (goblin sharks). Also a case of Somewhere An Ichthyologist Is Crying, as real goblin sharks are sluggish, flabby-muscled wimps by shark standards.
  • The Meg: How do you top a Great White? With an even bigger prehistoric shark awakened from the bottom of the ocean! One poster homaging Jaws had the shark coming up under the swimmer getting chased by an even bigger shark behind it.
  • My Super Ex-Girlfriend: The title ex-girlfriend throws a shark at the protagonist. The protagonist is in his new girlfriend's bedroom at the time. Several stories up in an apartment building.
  • Open Water: The first film, anyway. Double subversion, since nothing bad happens the first time a shark appears. The problem is later when it, presumably, gets curious and comes back... with friends. From then on, it just gets worse. Also notable is the fact that not only are the sharks all real (even the ones interacting with the actors) but are all species one would have a reasonably good chance of encountering in Real Life, compared to, say, the more-famous-but-rarer great white.
    • The third film cranks this Up to Eleven by having the imperiled protagonists on a shark-watching trip. Their boat capsizes, and thanks to to all the chum that their tour guides threw in the water to attract the sharks, they now have to contend with a myriad of them hovering around.
  • The Phantom: The Sengh Brotherhood's secret base is in shark-infested water.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean has a few sharks swimming around some shipwrecks in the first movie; Maccus, Davy Jones' first mate from the second and third movie, is a Shark Man; and in the fifth movie, the antagonists keep a brace of undead sharks on their ship and sic them on their enemies.
  • The Police Story spinoff, First Strike, has Jackie Chan fighting enemy mooks which inevitably leads to the interior of an aquarium's shark tank. Chan and the mook he's fighting spends most of the underwater battle trying to cut each other to lure the shark into eating one another, but luckily neither men ends up being devoured as they both got out and continues fighting on land.
  • The Reef: This Aussie film features four tourists forced to swim to an island ten miles away when their boat capsizes. Through a known shark zone. And yes they do encounter great white sharks.
  • Revolution (2012): Averted Trope. Rob Stewart and an assistant are in the water with sharks at the start of the Documentary and nothing bad happens to them.
  • Sand Sharks. A bunch of armored demonic-looking sharks that breathe air and swim through sand terrorizes a cliffside beach.
  • Syfy, née the Sci-Fi Channel (you could almost say that this is a regular monster in films made by The Asylum):
    • There have been times when this network has shown several movies of sharks attacking people back to back. Megalodons (giant prehistoric sharks) are quite often involved, e.g.. Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus.
    • Incidentally, if the title has Shark vs. anything, it's probably by Asylum — if they make anything that isn't a Mockbuster or a bad Christian flick, it's a giant shark fighting something else equally nasty.
    • Mega Shark has returned to face off against another giant prehistoric predator: Crocosaurus.
  • Blake Lively finds herself menaced by a shark in The Shallows. It's later indicated that the aggressive great white in question has a bad history with humans, given the spear fragment lodged in its mouth.
  • Shark Attack: A freak record of shark attacks are plaguing a South African fishing town. It does vary it a bit, showing other species such as Tiger Sharks and Makos besides the familiar Great White.
  • Shark Attack 3: Megalodon: Which, of course, features a Megalodon.
  • Sharknado: It's a tornado... carrying tons of sharks.
  • Sharknado 2: The Second One: It's a blizzard tornado... carrying tons of sharks.
  • Shark Night 3D: Obviously centers on this trope. A group of college students spends a weekend at a lake which has inexplicably become home to various man-eating species of sharks. The kicker? The sharks were supplied by a couple of rednecks who want to cash in on the Discovery Channel's Shark Week craze...by feeding college students to the sharks, and recording video footage of the attacks to post online, sell to various channels, etc.
  • Sharktopus: Combines this with Tentacled Terror.
  • Shark Week: This Asylum-produced film combines Jaws with Saw.
  • Soul Surfer: Based on a True Story. Young surfer Bethany Hamilton almost bleeds to death when a tiger shark bites off her left arm, but she survives and learns to surf extremely well with only one arm.
  • Spring Break Shark Attack: This Made-for-TV low-budget-gore-fest. Exactly What It Says on the Tin: attractive coeds in bathing suits and sharks.
  • The Suicide Squad has Nanaue, aka King Shark, a simple-minded but extremely lethal man/shark hybrid descended from an ancient shark god who likes to kill his enemies by eating them. Physically, he is easily the toughest member of the Suicide Squad in the film, able to withstand a ton of gunfire and get back up, and also the most dangerous in hand-to-hand combat.
  • Super Shark features a giant walking, flying shark. And a Walking Tank.
  • Swamp Shark. A mutant demonic great white shark terrorizes a swamp.
  • Toxic Shark. A shark becomes a Poisonous Person after coming into contact with some toxic waste.
  • In Team America: World Police, Kim Jong Il has a Shark Pool full of man-eating sharks, played by live dogfish that are bigger than the human marionettes.
  • Undercover Brother: At the end, Mr. Feather falls from a helicopter and chomped by a shark just before falling into the ocean.
  • Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea: Has a Shark Pool inside a submarine. Yes, really. A villainess meets her end in it.
  • The TV-movie adaptation of Peter Benchley's novel White Shark changed the title creature from a man-turned-Nazi weapon with metal teeth and claws into an American military-made bipedal great white shark.
  • Yellowbeard: This pirate comedy plays with this when the title character's wife is taken captive by the Royal Navy and pumped for information offscreen; when she's ready to talk, she says, "I think it was that shark that jogged my memory." "The Shark" is the handsome sailor (David Bowie in a cameo) who brings her into the office, who has a shark's fin strapped to his back; he "jogged her memory" via sex.
  • Zombi 2: This Lucio Fulci film has a shark fighting a zombie. It's a draw.

    Gamebooks 
  • The Fighting Fantasy series of books seems to contain hostile sharks in any maritime-inspired adventure.
    • Demons of the Deep is an adventure where you get to explore Atlantis after landing in an underwater Magic Circle allowing you to breathe. Naturally, you DO get attacked by sharks, and at one point save a Friendly, Playful Dolphin from a shark attack, where the dolphin will aid you in return.
    • The multiplayer adventure, The Riddling Reaver, has the player's party being caught in a sinking ship near the second act, at which point they get attacked by three sharks, which they'll need to work together to defeat.
    • Bloodbones, an adventure involving pirates, have you Walk the Plank, escape, and battle a shark while seeking dry land.
    • Stormslayer have you travelling through different lands of varying environments, including an underwater world, and once again you're assailed by shark enemies. Although in this book the sharks that attack you are hammerheads.
  • Appointment with F.E.A.R., which have you playing the role of a superhero, contains a scenario where you stop a shark attack on a crowded beach, in a blatant Jaws Shout-Out. Think of it as, "What if a superhero is present in Jaws during one of those shark attacks?"

    Literature 
  • At one point in 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Captain Nemo invites Professor Arronax on an underwater stroll to visit a pearl fishery, and then mentions the prospect of sharks. This makes the professor quite nervous: "So there I was, daydreaming about sharks capable of cutting a man in two with their row upon row of teeth. I could already feel a pain in my side." Talking to his friends a few minutes later, he accidentally speaks of "a hundred and fifty sharks" instead of "a hundred and fifty pearls."
    I slept rather badly. Sharks played an important role in my dreams.
  • In the original novel The Adventures of Pinocchio, the giant sea creature that swallows Pinocchio and Geppetto is not a whale but a shark.
  • Animorphs
    • This trope is invoked as early as the fourth book. That's when the kids morph dolphin and end up on the wrong end of a battle with sharks, leaving Marco almost bitten in half. Dealing with the intrinsic fear of sharks the experience left him with is a major plot point in The Escape.
    • In The Escape, the fifteenth book in the series, it is revealed that Yeerks have established an underwater base where they capture hammerhead sharks and implant brain-controlling chips in their heads to turn them into shock troopers for an invasion of an alien aquatic world inhabited by psychic man-frogs... The brain-controlling chips are mostly intended to make them smarter... smart enough to hunt in packs like wolves do. Also to enlarge their earholes for even more convenient brain control. The Animorphs later go to said alien world morphed into hammerheads themselves. It proves to be an inspired choice.
  • Subverted in Sergey Volnov's Army of the Sun, where sharks and whales have been artificially given intelligence and develop Psychic Powers. The sharks actually become deeply philosophical, benign creatures, able to open portals from one planet to another, as long as both feature large bodies of seawater.
  • Mr. Shark in The Bad Guys book series is considered a dangerous villain, known for eating anyone and anything in sight. He's considered such a threat that his case file hardly even has any info on it, and has the biggest warning out of the others. Despite this, he's still hired on by Mr. Wolf to pull a change to good, much to his confusion and irritation. Despite this, he goes through with the change in earnest, possibly one of the more earnest ones in the group, and ends up as one of the most sensitive members of the group.
  • In Balefire by Ken Goddard, a terrorist is planning to infiltrate the United States by swimming from a cargo ship, which is being followed by a shark feeding off the garbage thrown from the vessel. At first, the terrorist is amused by the shark and even feeds it to stave off the boredom of the voyage, but as the time for his infiltration grows near he realises that the shark is being conditioned to regard anything thrown overboard as food. He becomes increasingly paranoid as the shark keeps following them even after he orders the crew to stop disposing of their garbage, and eventually has to resort to shooting it.
  • Codex Alera
    • Subverted when Captain Demos mentions that sharks are likely to be more of a problem to a group of swimmers than leviathans... But when a shark messes with Isana, she throws it bodily out of the water and up twenty feet onto the deck of a pirate ship.
    • Played straight before that when Tavi had his army dump the blood and guts from butchered animals in the river when he was defending a bridge, attracting sharks from miles downstream and ensuring that any Canim attempting to swim around the bridge wouldn't make it very far.
  • The finale of Deception Point takes place on a marine biologist's rig over a massive swarm of sharks. Some baddies do find their way in, naturally.
  • Cretaceous-era sharks in Dinoverse cause some apprehension - Janine notices an Ischyrhizz and thinks "Oh, good. A killing machine with a Ginsu knife attachment. Mother Nature must have been in a funny mood when she came up with that one" - but the real danger is from the Elasmosaurus and Mososaurus lurking in that same ocean, picking off said sharks when the whim takes them.
  • Discworld
    • In Terry Pratchett's The Last Continent, the wizards, out at sea, see one. One wizard starts to burble about how they are maligned and list all their wonderful attributes. Unfortunately, it's the list about wolves, not sharks.
    • At the beginning of Interesting Times, a shark tries to attack Rincewind, but is eaten by the Luggage.
    • Jingo: "Vimes's grin was as funny as the one that moves very fast towards drowning men. And has a fin on top."
  • Gentleman Bastard. Sharks turn up repeatedly in The Lies of Locke Lamora: the city of Camorr features Gladiator Games where female gladiators fight them, and Camorr's top crime boss employs a Shark Pool when the need arises. The Big Bad begins a final overthrow of said crime boss by having a shark (being controlled by magic) jump out of the pool and bite his arm off.
  • He is a short story by Alan Dean Foster about an oceanographer who ends up encountering a Megalodon that has survived for millions of years living in an atoll in American Samoa.
  • Invoked with Scarface the Shark Man in Heart of Steel, whose job it is to patrol the waters around Shark Reef Isle for potential intruders. Of course, his creator, Alistair Mechanus, thinks that he's an absolute sweetheart.
  • James and the Giant Peach: The peach is attacked by sharks when floating on the sea, causing the frightened crew to escape by lifting the peach into the air with hundreds of seagulls. Later, they are surprised to discover that the sharks have hardly damaged the peach at all, which is explained in the narrative about sharks having a mouth awkwardly set back under their long nose.
  • James Bond:
    • Felix Leiter in Live and Let Die is captured by the bad guys, who proceed to lower him into the pool with a hungry shark, which bites off a hand and a leg from him. Later Bond must swim to the Big Bad's Island Base which is surrounded by sharks, but he's more concerned about barracudas because he knows sharks typically don't attack people of their own accord. Turns out the villains throw blood and offal into the water every night to send them into a feeding frenzy.
    • As Bond swims his way to the secret island base of the Nebulous Evil Organization SPECTRE in Nobody Lives for Ever, he is chased to the ground by a bull shark which he happens to come by.
  • Jaws, the original book by Peter Benchley. Benchley also wrote White Shark (later re-titled Peter Benchley's Creature), about a genetically engineered Half-Human Hybrid Nazi shark. A keen environmentalist, he later regretted his contribution to the Threatening Shark trope and wrote several non-fiction books about sharks and their important place in the ecosystem.
  • Killer Sharks: the Real Story is a 1977 book by 'Captain' Brad Matthews with an unforgettable cover of a screaming bathing beauty being swept into the bloody toothed maw of a shark. Supposedly written by a survivor of the USS Indianapolis whose experience caused him to dedicate his life to the study of sharks, it's actually Based on a Great Big Lie by novelist Nelson DeMille to cash in on Jaws.
  • The general idea behind Steve Alten's Meg series of novels.
  • The brain sharks of More Information Than You Require.
  • Leviathan in My Vampire Older Sister and Zombie Little Sister is a demon lord in the form of a 30 metrenote  long shark. It is even stronger than expected from its size, capable of casually destroying buildings by ramming them and jumping several stories into the air. On top of that, it has telepathic powers that it can use to paralyze people or to forcibly draw them into an alternate dimension with a five storey-deep flood, giving itself the home field advantage.
  • In Nation, sharks are practically the personification of From Bad to Worse:
    • While rescuing a drowning man — in the middle of a very surprising discovery — Mau is forced to confront a hungry shark. He wins, too.
    • First Mate Cox would almost certainly have died from that axe in his chest, but just to be sure he gets eaten by sharks, too.
  • In The Pendragon Adventure, Saint Dane sends a quig shark to attack Bobby and Loor on land in another DIMENSION!
  • In The Princess Bride, when Buttercup tries to swim away from the ship, Vizzini warns her that, unless she comes back immediately, he will cut his arms and legs and draw blood into a cup and throw it into the water "and sharks can smell blood in the water for miles and you won't be beautiful for long." She doesn't, he does, the sharks go mad, and the narrator interrupts to say that, of course, Buttercup doesn't get eaten at that time. (The movie replaced the sharks with shrieking eels.)
  • The Raw Shark Texts by Steven Hall features a "purely conceptual" shark that swims through memes, eating memories and identities.
  • Redshirts has ice sharks, though the characters can't figure out whether they're sharks made of ice or sharks living in ice; all they know is that some hapless crewmember got eaten by one.
  • Towards the end of Red Storm Rising, a Soviet pilot and an American one, both of their planes went down during the big dogfight when NATO retook Iceland, bring their life rafts together to take advantage of the American's shark repellent. The Soviet pilot voices a distinct unease with being devoured by "a carnivorous fish".
  • Redwall
    • Sharks often show up during the seafaring scenes. In The Bellmaker, Finbarr Galedeep sings a silly song about sharks, and later that evening a very worried Rufe Brush comes and asks him what a shark looks like. He tells him that mostly all you'll see is a big pointy fin, to which Rufe responds "Does it look like this one circling our ship, sir?"
    • And in Triss, Krrova, Scarum, and Saxtus run across a shark at least twice.
  • Rip Tide, a 1980's novel by Donald Cheatham involves a 26-foot tiger shark stalking Florida shores. Halfway through the focus of the novel switches to an incoming hurricane which dramatically increases the death quotient, with the shark only a bit player.
  • In Shark Island by Chris Jameson, a team of scientists mucks about with acoustic signals to control seal patterns, which also happens to make the great white sharks in the area become highly aggressive killing machines.
  • Shark Wars, a book series by E. J. Altbacker is about a shark named Gray and his fellow shark friends as they defend their home waters from their enemies.
  • Charlie the intelligent, bipedal, amorphous mutated great white in Slimer.
  • Snow Shark is about a seemingly ravenous man-made shark designed by the military to attack its victims in snowy terrains. It ends up accidentally being released into public territory that just so happens to be only a few miles away from a heavily populated snow lodge.
  • In Star Island, Bang Abbott lured a pack of hungry lemon sharks to a crowded beach so he could take a lucrative photograph of the ensuing mayhem. The discovery of his unethical scheme forced him out of newspapers and into tabloid photography, where he shows similar poor judgment.
  • In his essay "A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again" (collected in an anthology of the same name and about a luxury Caribbean cruise he had taken to report on for Harper's), David Foster Wallace goes on an extended tangent about his horror of and fascination with sharks, detailing his boyhood obsession with shark attacks (including an extensive knowledge of the attacks on the survivors of the sinking of USS Indianapolis) and how crazy it was to see Jaws when he was 13. He also tries to lure sharks to swim by the ship, to no avail.
  • The second Young Wizards novel has a ninety-foot long shark as a major character. While he doesn't make things worse for the good guys, he definitely makes things worse for the bad guys. However, he still scares the crap out of his allies, because he will eat anything that's in distress, including his friends. Note that he's not a great white: he's older than that SPECIES of shark, considering that, you know, he was the original shark to accept the first Silent One's sacrifice.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Subverted in Australian Wilderness with Ray Mears when Ray goes scuba diving and spends some time swimming alongside a young whale shark. As noted under Real Life, whale sharks are harmless to humans and all they eat is plankton. Ray describes the experience as "amazing." In the same episode, he examines an ancient fossilized megalodon tooth that still has sharp edges.
  • Shawn Weatherly's character was killed off Baywatch in the first season by being attacked by a shark.
  • The Bionic Woman episode "Deadly Music". A villain plants a homing device on Jaime Sommers that will summon sharks to attack her. Hey, wait a minute!
  • CSI has an episode where a tiger shark was released into a swimming pool full of people and bit a woman's arm off, but it turned out she was already dead.
  • CSI: Miami has several episodes investigating victims of sharks.
  • Discovery Channel's Shark Week deserves a mention, since that wouldn't exist if sharks weren't so badass and awesome.
  • In the Doctor Who episode "A Christmas Carol", the Doctor and young Kazran nearly get eaten by a shark (that swims in the fog). Subverted in that the shark apparently isn't as vicious as it seems: the Doctor, in true Cloud Cuckoolander fashion, harnesses it to a flying sleigh and goes for a joyride.
  • In the second season of The Flash (2014), King Shark appears at the end of Episode 4, and later returns as the Monster of the Week for Episode 15.
  • In The Future Is Wild, a distant-future flooded Earth has as its top predator a charming critter called the Sharkopath, a highly intelligent aquatic pack hunter that communicates with its packmates using flashes of bioluminescence.
  • Played straight in one episode of H₂O: Just Add Water, subverted in another. This show's version of Driven to Suicide has Cleo swim into the middle of a known shark breeding ground (don't worry, she lives). Another episode has Rikki deciding to enter a short film competition about heroes and make the film about sharks. Because she is a mermaid she is able to get much closer to sharks in their natural habitat with a camera than professionals (she can't use the footage however for the same reasons). When Zane runs into sharks Rikki simply uses her powers to heat up the water and scare them off.
  • That episode of Happy Days. You know the one. Not dangerous for the characters, but the show got wounded pretty bad.
  • The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries: the third season episode Last Kiss of Summer has one of the bad guys trying to kill off Frank Hardy by taking him surfing at a university breeding area for great whites.
  • In the Haven episode "Over My Head", a woman named Daphne is trapped in a crashed car at low tide, while a shark circles and waits for the tide to rise so it can reach her. Her Trouble causes her to manifest these dangers to people she believes might rescue her. As such, an imaginary shark gobbles a woman in a pool, among other, less immediately fatal occurrences.
  • The I-Land: The waters around the island are populated with sharks, which almost kill some of the stranded people when they go out for a swim.
  • The Jeff Corwin Experience: As Jeff Corwin oh so eloquently explained about any sane animal's reaction to this trope: "If you wanna get them all out of the water and onto the beach all you gotta do is go like this...SHARK! SHARK!"
  • Kamen Rider
  • "Adrift", the second episode of Lost's second season, features Michael and Sawyer stuck on tiny remnants of their exploded raft. Sawyer's gunshot wound eventually attracts a shark, because of course floating in the middle of the ocean on scraps of bamboo isn't jeopardy enough! At one point, Sawyer tries to get from one raft to another, with the shark nearby, which may have been a play on the phrase Jump the Shark.
  • The 2013 Shark Week Mockumentary special Megalodon: The Monster Shark Lives is about a group of scientists in South Africa trying to uncover evidence that a Megalodon, a giant prehistoric shark, was responsible for sinking a ship.
  • The MythBusters have done multiple shark myths rooted both in Real Life anecdotes and popular fiction. Fun fact: MythBuster team member Grant Imahara is absolutely terrified of sharks. Naturally, he gets to be the one who goes into the water for every myth involving sharks.
    Tracy Jordan: Live every week like it's Shark Week.
  • Subverted in the Netflix series Our Great National Parks. A young female Great White shark is shown approaching a crowded California beach and getting close to a stand-up paddle boarder as the music becomes increasingly suspenseful... then the narrator explains that a shark this age is only six feet long and only preys on fish.
  • In an episode of Psych, the Victim of the Week appears to have been killed by a shark. As it turned out, this shark was framed.
  • Chevy Chase's "Land Shark" sketches on Saturday Night Live.
    "Candygram!"
  • Shark Tank (known in other countries as Dragons' Den) uses shark imagery to represent how ruthless the investors are.
  • The Six Million Dollar Man episode "Sharks". A villain group has learned how to train and control sharks.
  • Shows up in the occasional Monster of the Week in Super Sentai and Power Rangers, but subverted as often as not when there's a shark among the heroes:
  • The Ultra Series has its share of shark-based water kaiju:
    • Samekujira is the last monster from Ultraman Taro and a kaiju-sized alien shark-whale brought to earth by an alien invader named Valky. It can travel on land, however, as well as having traits borrowed from sawfish in it's beak.
    • Ultraman Tiga'' has a Land Shark monster called a Geozark, who spends most of the episode drilling throughout the city with it's fin being the only part of the monster that's visible. Subverted when it turns out to be a tunneling robot created by Keigo Masaki.
    • Genegarg from Ultraman Z is based on a tiger shark (even bearing the Boss Subtitles "Ferocious Space Shark"!) and like real-life tiger sharks, would gladly chomp on and swallow literally everything in it's way. Including another monster called a Bullton.
  • The Walking With... series frequently subvert this by placing sharks alongside even scarier predators:
    • Walking with Dinosaurs. During "Cruel Sea", there are plenty of sharks (called Hybodus) about, but they aren't the top predator. That would be Liopleurodon, one of the few creatures that is proven to always make things even worse than they are with sharks. How much worse? Try 21 ft aquatic reptilian killing machine with a combined jaw size of just under 9.5 ft. Run.
    • Walking with Beasts depicts sharks as being outclassed by larger marine predators as well. A group of sharks hunting in the shallows at the northern edge of the Tethys Ocean flee in terror from a hungry Basilosaurus, a prehistoric 50 ft killer whale.
    • Walking with Monsters: In the first time period that sharks show up, they are playing second fiddle to the much larger carnivorous fish Hyneria. One of them is Swallowed Whole by the larger predator.
    • Sea Monsters has sharks as well. Stethacanthus in the Devonian barely even registers as a threat. There's also the obligatory Megalodon in the Pliocene. (For reference, the babies are the size of an adult Great White.) The Jurassic still has Hybodus, and the Cretaceous has more sharks that barely register as a threat. There are also Xiphactinus (a.k.a. The Ugliest Fish in History) and giant mosasaurs, just to make the sharks look irrelevant.

    Music 
  • "Shark Fighter!" by The Aquabats! is about a man who goes on a shark-fighting rampage after a shark eats his girlfriend.
  • The famous Cumbia song "Tiburón a la vista" ("Shark on sight") is very much about this trope.
  • "Sharks" by Morphine.
  • Downplayed in Pinkfong's Baby Shark for toddlers. It begins by enumerating a cute shark family — and then they go hunting.
  • "Surfin' Shark" by Darryl Rhoades and the Hahavishnu Orchestra.

    Myths & Religion 
  • Averted in Pacific Mythology, in which the sea gods are usually portrayed as benevolent shark-shaped guardians of the sea. Examples include Ukupanipo, Kamohoalii, and Dakuwaqa. Hawaiian mythology goes one step further and refers to tiger sharks as "na 'aumakua", benevolent ancestor spirits.
  • Stories of "weresharks" appear in a number of South Pacific cultures. A good example is Nanaue in Hawaiian legend, the son of the aforementioned Kamohoalii and a woman named Kalei. He was born with a shark's mouth on his back and the ability to become a shark upon entering water, so his father warned Kalei that not to feed him any red meat. The taboo was unwittingly broken by his uncle, giving Nanaue an appetite for human flesh as a result. King Shark of DC Comics is directly based on him.
  • By contrast, sharks in Japanese mythology are more malicious. The description of a shark monster in the Ehon Hyaku Monogatari is probably the oldest description of a shark ambushing people like in modern media.
    • A Youkai known as the Isonade is described as a colossal shark covered in hooked spikes that it uses to shred ships open and impale unlucky sailors. Despite their size, they're very hard to notice, and you'll probably only get a glimpse of its tail before it vanishes beneath the waves.
  • Inuit Mythology records attacks of Greenland sharks on kayaks, which would be exceptional considering this species is not known to attack humans. However, they are also part of Sedna's entourage of creatures, and thus properly honored as vital for the people's survival.

    Pinball 

     Professional Wrestling 
  • Garbage Wrestler Shark Tsuchiya from FMW.
  • John Tenta was billed as the Shark as a member of the Dungeon of Doom in WCW from June 1995 until Big Bubba shaved off half of Tenta's hair to kick him out of the group in June 1996. His ring gear had a shark design and he had shark "teeth" painted onto his beard. His Finishing Move was a running clothesline called the Shark Attack, and he would sometimes "bite" his opponents.
  • Heartland Wrestling Association's El Piranha became Shark Boy when he was called up by WCW. He had a toothed mask and would get stuck to those he bit.
  • Jawsolyn was an Affectionate Parody of the Trope Codifier and the trope in general.

    Roleplay 
  • Destroy the Godmodder: A large swarm of flying sharks was summoned to take down a rogue team member hiding beneath a giant pile of fish in the tvtropes session. Needless to say, it did not go as planned.

    Tabletop Games 
  • BattleTech:
    • Minor historical tidbit: The totemic animal of Clan Sea Fox got all but wiped out by a new predator introduced into its native oceans by a rival Clan. The Sea Foxes turned insult into opportunity and simply adopted said predator as their new totem instead; today, they're known as Clan Diamond Shark. The Diamond Sharks somewhat subvert this, however; they generally would rather do business with you than fight you and treat their civilians well by Clan standards.
    • The Rim Worlds Republic played it straight; their government was often brutal and they eventually gave rise to an Evil Chancellor who would destroy the Star League and plunge human space into 300 years of war. The symbol of the RWR? A shark.
  • Call of Cthulhu has the Father of All Sharks, a rarely-seen avatar of Cthulhu that takes the form of an absolutely enormous (dwarfing even a megalodon) and extraordinarily aggressive shark.
  • CthulhuTech has megalodons, big enough to be a threat to aquatic Humongous Mecha.
  • Dungeons & Dragons
    • The monster called the bulette, better known as the "land shark", is an aggressive predator that burrows through the soil, complete with fin cutting through the surface of the ground as it burrows toward you.
    • D&D also has sharks that live in acid and lava. Because even when you're drowning in acid or lava, sometimes it's just too easy. The monster entry for the acid-breathing shark sums it up pretty well: "What's worse than a pit full of acid? A pit full of acid with a shark in it."
    • It also has regular sharks, the megalodon (giant prehistoric shark), and weresharks.
    • The sahuagin are sometimes depicted as humanoid sharks, and their patron deity Sekolat takes the form of a giant shark.
    • The terlen is a shark-like creature found across the Lower Planes, with elongated fins that allow it to fly, or even wriggle across dry land in pursuit of prey. Their Planescape entry notes that terlens' shark ancestors were hardy and dangerous enough to thrive in the worst waters of the multiverse before they were mutated into amphibious predators.
  • Exalted: Benthic knifeooths are sharks up to twenty feet long and with slender, serpentine bodies. They get their name from their wickedly serrated teeth, which snag in the flesh of their prey — which translates to almost anything smaller than themselves — to prevent it from escaping. Luckily, they live in the very deep ocean and far from human settlement. Less luckily, there are plenty of things in Creation, ranging from idle curiosity on the shark's part to a sea god in a bad mood, that can drive one towards the shallows and into contact with humans.
  • Hero Clix: The miniatures game set of Arkham Asylum has a figure of Black Manta, who while being a decent playing piece, is pushed into the category of awesome by having his sculpt feature him surfing on the head of a shark with a frikkin' laser beam on its head. Later on, we get a Black Lantern Aquaman, who can summon zombie sharks.
  • Infernum has Obsidian Sharks, Spawn (a sort of proto-lifeform) that look like sharks made from living volcanic rock which swims through the seas and rivers of flame, magma and molten metal that flow just about everywhere in Hell. And, as Spawn, kill one, and more will promptly tear their way out of its carcass and attack you.
  • Middle-earth Role Playing : Nímaeargyrth, or White Seadeaths (by their description, they're essentially great white sharks), are deadly predators that will hunt anything with meat on it, even taking wounded whales.
  • Numenera: Jybrils are sea monsters resembling titanic, monstrous sharks with three eyes in a row on each side of their heads. They will attack and eat anything they come across — humanoids, fish, other sea monsters, machines... — with the nanites living symbiotically in their tissues allowing them to digest all of it.
  • Pirates Constructible Strategy Game introduced giant, boat-sized sharks as a new Sea Monster unit in the ninth set, "Ocean's Edge". They were the smallest of the sea monsters with only two segments, compared to the Sea Serpents with four and Kraken and Leviathan with five, and like most sea monsters were considered Awesome, but Impractical due to their fragility and inability to carry crew or cargo like normal ships.
  • In Salvage Hidden Treasures, the "Shark Attack!" event has sharks attacking the player and damaging their scuba gears, costing them either 500£ or one of their treasures if they can't afford it.
  • Stormbringer: In Demon Magic, the adventure "Sorcerer's Isle" had a megalodon that could sink ships by biting through their hulls.
  • Swashbucklers of the 7 Skies has skysharks: "Horse-sized, arrow-shaped carnivores (little more than fanged mouths with wings)".
  • Warhammer 40,000 has the Carcharodons (or "Space Sharks") Space Marine Chapter, a Chapter of brutal and feared warriors that are rarely seen. And when they are, nothing is left living in their wake.
  • Warhammer: Age of Sigmar; The Idoneth Deepkin use sharks called Allopexes as beasts of battle for their more elite warriors, who attack with various ranged weapons while the Allopex tears at opponents with its teeth and fins.
  • Werewolf: The Apocalypse has the Rokea, the weresharks. The Garou serve as Gaia's warriors on land, and the Rokea serve as her warriors at sea. Only since most of them spend all their time away from humanity, they seem a little... off.
  • World of Synnibarr, well-known for its flying bears with laser-beam eyes, also has sharks. Sharks with armor-penetrating teeth, and shapechanging abilities so they can climb aboard your ship.

    Toys 
  • BIONICLE: Pridak is the leader of a group of Barraki warlords and an evil shark-man with an army of mutant Takea sharks and suspicious red markings around his mouth. This is the guy who destroyed a platoon of his own men for a minor infraction, gave the Big Bads reason to fear him, got Makuta thinking about taking over the universe, beat the crap out of his fellow Barraki (and everybody else) including ripping out Kalmah's eye and tearing off Nocturn's arm, and he threw Sarda to his army of sharks for mouthing off. He lived.
  • Car-eating sharks are often included in some Hot Wheels playsets.
  • LEGO's much earlier Aquazone set-line had the classis Aquasharks as the villains for a time. The CITY line also comes with sharks.
  • The Tomy Ania Animal line has the "Great White Shark", being an educational toy, it is photorealistic, highly articulated, and its jaw can open and chomp your action figures! The toy line also comes with the Whale Shark, except it's a Gentle Giant, and it's smaller than the Great White.
  • Transformers has several examples:
    • Generation One had the Sharkticons, animalistic slaves/goons of the Quintessons, who kept a shark pit in their courtroom. Anyone who got put on trial ended up in the shark pit.
    • Later on, there was Overbite of the Seacons, who turned into a shark with arms and legs.
    • Meta example: The Beast Machines Hammerstrike toy (hammerhead shark beast mode) has elbow joints prone to cracking at the sockets, rendering both modes unworkable (each forearm has half the shark mode's lower jaw).
    • The Universe toyline established a piece of Cybertronian wildlife known as the Oxide Sharks. Beast Wars: Uprising expanded on them a little further - they can transform as well, in this case into torpedoes, aimed at anyone foolish enough to come near them.

    Visual Novels 
  • In Tsukihime, Shiki can get killed at one point by opening a door, while on land, to find a shark behind it (it's one of Nero Chaos's 666 familiars). The doorshark has become something of a meme among the fans.

    Web Animation 
  • DSBT InsaniT: Sushi is one of the most recurring threats in the series. He is a metal shark with large teeth and an incredible appetite.
  • Gawr Gura of hololive subverts this. Despite being a Cute Monster Girl based on a shark, complete with Scary Teeth, she's a chipper and sweet-tempered Genki Girl whose ill will towards others is largely limited towards messing with them in cooperative gaming. Played straighter with her Evil Counterpart, Gawr, who was first mentioned in her Image Song and later manifested in an unarchived concert, though even this is a Downplayed Trope in that the worst she did was insulting the chat members watching her stream and finding the original Gura's "cheerful idol persona" to be grating.
  • Homestar Runner
    • This is combined this with its land-bound cousin in the form of the Bear Holding A Shark. Really just a cardboard standee that pops out from behind Strong Bad's fence, but a valid meta-character all the same.
    • And there is, of course, our resident parenting expert, Hungry Shark. He's gonna eat your kids.
  • How to Kill a Mockingbird: The pirates use flying, burning sharks as personal transports.

    Webcomics 

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Aladdin: The Series
    • Two episodes deal with a gigantic, shark-like beast that swims through sand like water and has a fortune of treasures pressed into its underside. In the first episode, it attacks Agrabah and Aladdin and friends join with a hunter who had been after the shark for years, and they succeeded in driving it off. In the second episode, the shark is slain by a race of Ewok-like desert hunters working for an evil wizard, but Aladdin and the hunter use its skeleton to repair the hunter's ship and fight the wizard.
    • In another episode, Aladdin actually becomes a shark via a Baleful Polymorph spell from a Clingy Jealous Girl mermaid and is forced to attack Genie, Iago, and Abu.
  • Subverted in an episode of American Dragon: Jake Long where Jake is tasked with guarding a shark-woman who holds in possession (in her stomach) Poseidon's trident. Despite her compulsive eating, the shark-woman means well and claims that all shark-people are misunderstood and friendly. The only evil shark-men Jake fights are a group of escaped delinquents who want to flood the world with Poseidon's trident.
  • Bob's Burgers: In "The Deepening", Mr. Fishchoder buys a mechanical shark used in a movie filmed in the town to attract tourists. The Belcher kids accidentally tip it over, causing it to crawl down the street and break everything in its path.
  • 11 years before the first Austin Powers movie, Centurions actually had sharks with Frickin' Laser Beams. In the episode "Man or Machine", Max Ray is menaced by a "Cybervore", a shark that Cyborg Mad Scientist Doc Terror has outfitted with high tech weaponry.
  • Classic Disney Shorts
  • In Code Lyoko Season 4, XANA controls shark-like monsters called "Rekins" in the Digital Sea. They fire torpedoes.
  • Danger Mouse: In "Heavy Duty", Dr. Crumhorn creates a food substance for sharks that enables them to traverse solid land. His own finned Fido has been trained to seek out and destroy Danger Mouse and Penfold.
  • DuckTales (1987):
    • A shark can be seen chasing Scrooge McDuck's submarine in the opening theme.
    • "A DuckTales Valentine": Launchpad is worried, having heard that the area where the treasure is supposed to be is shark-infested, and sure enough, a shark turns up to attack the group while they're underwater.
  • Eek! The Cat
    • The show has that gag about a shark that can chase you on land on its "The Thunder Lizards" segment.
      "Darn this evolution thing!"
    • Cross the shark with the Angry Guard Dog and you get Sharky the sharkdog.
  • Timmy on The Fairly OddParents has to dive into shark-infested waters. Good thing he is missing his emotions at the time.
    Shark 1: He's not scared!
    Shark 2: He's weird, he's weird! (sharks run off)
  • In Family Guy Joe gets a past life reading and finds out he was once an octopus. He thinks this is great until a shark swims past and bites off all his tentacles.
  • The Fangface episode "A Toothy Shark Is No Lark" has a cruise ship threatened by a gigantic shark, under the command of an evil fish man. There's a lot of shenanigans with Fangface trying to hold the shark's mouth open with a car-jack so it won't bite him. Eventually the fish man is arrested and the shark, thoroughly confused by the experience, returns to the sea.
    • Also invoked in the earlier episode "A Creep From The Deep", when Fangface attempts to eat Puggsy while scuba diving, prompting Puggsy to cry "Help! Jaws has caught me in his jaws!"
  • Aside from the page quote given above, Futurama has a couple other examples.
    • The Carcarons of "Zapp Dingbat" are a race of shark-like aliens that Zapp Brannigan is working on negotiations with. Given that this is Zapp we are talking about talking to a race of Shark Men with little tolerance for any slights towards them, things go about as well as you'd expect.
    • In the episode "A Taste of Freedom", one display at the Museum of Ancient Weapons is of a "Sharkapult", which is Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • In the Goof Troop episode "Cabana Fever", this is played for sadistic laughs when a shark is really determined to eat Pete. Specifically. Enough to burrow underground into an active volcano to chase after him.
  • The House of Mouse short "Goofy's Extreme Sports: Shark Feeding."
  • Who could forget the marvelous subversion in Jabberjaw!!
  • Kenny the Shark, where the eponymous shark is a household pet, subverts this trope and somewhat plays it straight. While Kenny does cause a bit of trouble, he usually has good intentions when causing it.
  • Littlest Pet Shop (2012): The Biskit twins' mansion has a fountain with a tiny shark in it. In "What's In The Batter", their security guard gets knocked in, and the shark clamps on his head, making him run around screaming.
  • A few Looney Tunes cartoons:
    • The Bugs Bunny cartoon Rabbitson Crusoe, which features Yosemite Sam, a pair of desert islands (1 Castaway, 1 Palm Tree), and the shark Dopey Dick, all in addition to Bugs.
    • The latter-day Sylvester and Tweety cartoon Hawaiian Aye Aye, which features a shark as a dog-type pet of Granny's, who does everything he can to protect Tweety from Sylvester. Even at the end, as Granny and Tweety leave on a cruise ship, that bad ol' putty tat still tries to go after the little yellow bird, while the shark still goes after Sylvester.
    Tweety: That bad ol' putty tat sure don't give up easy.
    Shark: Yes, and I don't give up easy either.
  • In The Mask, when ineffectual villain Fish Guy (who is half-fish, half-really dumb adolescent) puts on the Mask, he becomes "Shark Dude".
  • And back in 1976, DePatie-Freleng has Misterjaw, a top-hatted, German-accented Great White, no less.
  • Bull Sharkowski from My Gym Partner's a Monkey is the school bully at Charles Darwin Middle School, though he lives in fear of his older sister Euripides, who is actually smaller than him but has museum-worthy baby teeth.
  • Turns up as Nightmare Fuel in My Little Pony Tales of all places. Schoolgirls Patch and Bon-Bon, through a major lapse in judgment by the former, find themselves floating over the ocean in a hot-air balloon, which is then damaged by birds. Just when they think they've hit their bleakest moment (and this isn't even the first time Bon-Bon's been in a life-threatening situation), they look down and see shark fins in the water.
  • The Octonauts averts this besides being a kids' show with Lemmy the Lemon Shark, who after being helped by Peso twice, rescues the cute little penguin (and the cuter littler starfish said penguin came to rescue) from a volcanic sea vent.) After it's over and Lemmy is finally reunited with his fellow lemon shark "dudes," he's given a sticker on his nose by Peso.
  • Chomper the shark from Rainbow Fish is a local bully along with his buddy Stingo the stingray.
  • On The Real Ghostbusters, the Ghostbusters encounter a Megalodon while time-skipping and landing in a prehistoric ocean. Though, whilst citing the time period as being the Cenozoic Era is accurate enough, and the creature being introduced with a giant fin cutting through the water, when the Megalodon is actually seen under the water, it looks less like a giant shark, and is closer to looking like a Mosasaur, a group of sea-lizards that went extinct about the same time as the dinosaurs.
    Peter: What does a Megalodon eat?
    Egon: Anything smaller than itself.
    (cue frantic swimming away)
  • ReBoot
    • A season 2 episode features a game set underwater. The User's submarine is very shark-like. Not to mention a scene where mer-Bob and mer-Dot are surrounded by a school of sharks until Bob cuts one in half and scares the rest off.
    • One of those sharks reappears in "System Crash", only it's completely helpless with no water to swim in.
  • The Witch Hedwig the Big Bad of Saban's Adventures of the Little Mermaid has an army of sharks as her henchmen.
  • Scooby-Doo once got involved with a prehistoric shark (or so it seemed).
  • Sealab 2021
    • In the episode "Tinfins", Dr. Quinn placed a shark's brain into a robot shark's body.
    Quinn: What I did was I took nature's most perfect killing machine, and needlessly turned it into a robot.
    • And then there's the episode where they are trapped in an underwater cave with their oxygen supply running out, with a very persistent Great White waiting for them at the only way out. They end up dying at the end of the episode when they run out of air.
    • Subverted with the shark that (allegedly) killed Marco: Marco was sleeping with his wife, so it's hard to blame him. The half-human, half-shark Sharko that resulted however, is the Butt-Monkey and Cousin Oliver of Sealab.
  • Space Ghost episode "Revenge of the Spider Woman''. One of the title villain's monsters is a three-headed Hydro Shark that tries to eat Space Ghost. Unfortunately, Space Ghost's Hammer Ray fails to stop it.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants:
    • Played with in one episode where SpongeBob accidentally becomes the new lifeguard.
    SpongeBob: Emergency! Everybody out of the water!
    Bather: What's the problem?
    SpongeBob: Um... there are sharks in there!
    (cut to a nerdy-looking shark and his family)
    Shark: Hey, that's my family you're talking about.
    • Another episode has SpongeBob joining a gang of sharks and worrying they could be thugs. Subverted in that the sharks turned out be decent guys, and their gang is actually a dancing troop.
    • Played straight when Mrs. Puff gets fired and replaced with a Drill Sergeant Nasty shark instead. However, even he is unable to teach Spongebob how to successfully drive, so Mrs. Puff is hired again.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Riff Tamson is an anthropomorphic shark man and a sadistic, ferocious Separatist commander who actually bites his enemies to death on top of that.
  • Street Sharks was essentially the unholy bastard child of this trope and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. No, really.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012) has Armaggon, who was also in some of the comics and the SNES Tournament Fighters, in the fourth season. This version of the character is an alien Shark Man who is a bounty hunter and wears bulky power armor that also doubles as his spaceship. It features twin laser Gatling guns, missile launchers, and a very powerful mouth hatch with metal-shredding teeth, in addition to his own razor-lined mouth inside. He's hired to hunt down the Turtles and bring them to Dregg, the main villain of season 4, and the Turtles later succeed in making the hunt personal for Armaggon, creating a secondary recurring villain.
  • Total Drama Island features freshwater sharks. Revenge of the Island has them return. One shark in particular, due to exposure of toxic waste, was mutated so that it can breathe air as well as water, and can walk on land.
    • In All-Stars, Scott reveals that sharks are his greatest fear due to said land-shark brutally attacking him last season, forcing him into a trauma chair after his elimination. Don't worry, he got better.
    "Okay, maybe I have a phobia of sh-sh-sharks... Can you blame me?"
  • Much like Transformers: Robots in Disguise, Beast Wars provides an aversion with Cybershark. A Maximal, his bio describes him as a swashbuckling hero who chases after space pirates. He never appeared in the series, however, and only appears in the IDW comics. Played straight elsewhere, however, particularly with the Seacon Overbite. He did appear, in a fashion, as the Predacon Sky-byte in Transformers: Robots in Disguise.
  • The Venture Bros.
    • In the episode "The Family That Slays Together, Stays Together (Part 1)", the maritime-themed villain Go-Fish tries to kill Brock Samson by chumming the water to attract sharks.
    • The Monarch teaches a lesson to a treacherous minion by putting him into a shark tank. However, since he'd previously replaced the guy's blood with acid, the sharks won't touch him. So... "Lower the giant HAIR DRYER!!!"
  • Wander over Yonder: Emperor Awesome, who is a Shark Man and one of the most recurring villains. He destroys planets by partying!
  • What A Cartoon! Show has subversion. Pfish is a shark who is partnered with Chip, a dyspeptic bobcat. Together they are officers in the bomb squad of a police precinct.
  • Averted with Shark from WordWorld.
  • Averted with Sharko from Zig & Sharko, who protects Marina from Zig who always tries to eat her.

    Real Life 
  • In Real Life, sharks play a very important role in the marine ecosystem, and their presence is a good sign of cleaner, more productive seas.
    • No, sharks do not become chronic maneaters like some mammalian carnivores. There is no such thing as a "rogue shark" which habitually makes a point to attack humans it finds as easy prey. Cases of multiple persons harmed by sharks in a small area within a relatively short time are just sad coincidences for the victims involving multiple animals.
    • No, sharks do not go into a berserk feeding frenzy upon smelling blood any more than any other carnivore would. When they are attracted to blood, they overwhelmingly prefer fish blood.
    • No, sharks can't pick up a drop of blood across square miles of ocean water. While they can smell blood, there needs to be a significant amount pouring for a reasonable amount of time as smells travel slower in water than in air.
    • No, sharks do not jump out of the water to attack persons on boats. Various species might breach, but this is either because they're attacking something just below the surface and inertia kept them going, they launch themselves to avoid predators, rid themselves of parasites, or quite possibly just to have fun.
  • The sinking of the USS Indianapolis and the fate of many of its crew. This was carried out primarily by Oceanic whitetip sharks, who are notorious for being unstoppable (people tried explosives, they failed to do anything) when it comes to hunting, as their open-sea habitat is barely capable of sustaining them causing them to be starving all the time. They're responsible for the most human deaths of any species of shark (in fact, they have a higher death toll than all other sharks combined), namely because they would be the only ones to swarm shipwreck survivors, and they get away with it as the carnage happens out of sight, to people that don't care what shark it is. It was even they that mariners nicknamed "Sea dogs" because of their slow and cautious but curious pace when investigating something new.
    • Granted, in recent years using the Indianapolis has become hotly contested. Oceanic Whitetips, the species responsible for the attacks, are notorious scavengers. Given about a third the crew died by the time the ship sunk due to the explosion, the sinking itself, or injuries therein; a very large majority of the fatalities of the men in the water were already on dead within the first few days or even just hours adrift. In other words, sun exposure, thirst, internal injuries, bleeding to death, starvation, and even suicide killed far more people than the sharks did; with survivor reports inflaming the actual victim count from a mixture of post-traumatic stress and mistaking scavenging for predation. A 2017 investigation hosted by Shark Week determined the actual predation-caused fatality count was closer to one or two dozen. Compare that to the 500+ directly attributable to the Japanese torpedos that sunk the ship and the US Navy ignoring the S.O.S. signal.
  • The Megalodon, a forty foot — that's the minimum estimate — long prehistoric super shark. Also believed to have had one of the most powerful bite forces in the history of the animal kingdom. As well as a number of other large (and often freakish-looking) prehistoric sharks. Want some examples?
    • Helicoprion was as large as a great white and had a circular saw-shaped bottom jaw lined with hundreds of teeth; its relative, Edestus, aka the scissor shark, had a line of teeth permanently sticking out of its mouth on both jaws. Although Helicoprion is now thought to have been a ratfish, not a shark. Not that this makes it any less badass, though.
    • There's also Xenacanthus, a freshwater shark that managed to live through two mass extinctions events (one of which wiped out 95% of all life) and had a cool looking spike on its head. Its close relative, Orthacanthus, was a shark with fangs — basically a shark crossed with a crocodile. Stethacanthus had a dorsal fin in the shape of an anvil and tiny spines covering it and its head, and Cretoxyrhina, a Cretaceous shark about as large as the great white with tiger shark-like jaws and teeth deadly enough to give it the nickname "Ginshu shark" that lived in one of the most monster-filled seas in Earth's history.
  • If you thought the Tu-95 "Bear" nuclear bomber was bad news, there's the Project 941 "Akula"(shark) ballistic missile submarine (known in the west as the "Typhoon" class), the largest in the world. Threatening? You bet.
    • The most modern Russian attack submarine, the Project 671B Schuka-B goes by the NATO reporting name "Akula". Although it is not as terrifying as the Russian Akula(the Typhoon), it is a definite threat for Western submarines.
    • Also, the Russians have the Kamov Ka-50 attack helicopter, known as the "Chornaya Akula" (Black Shark).
  • Reality has a habit of subverting trends or tropes even often parroted in outdated documentaries, showing this trope is so pervasive as to even color perceptions of sharks in media that was supposedly informative a few decades ago.
    • At first the Tiger shark seems like a classic example. To explain, Tiger Sharks are Extreme Omnivores and will seemingly eat absolutely anything they can. Things found inside tiger shark stomachs include license plates, bones of various animals normally too large to fit inside to begin with (like horses), and supposedly (according to a 16th-century report by a respected marine biologist of the time) even the remains of a medieval knight still clad in his armour. This sounds threatening, until you remember the only reason something like a horse would be far out at sea would be if the carcass washed off shore and the Tiger Shark was merely scavenging. The same can be said for the inedible objects sometimes injested purely on accident.
    • Bull sharks are often reported as being violently unpredictable and aggressive behavior, and have been known to attack people without provocation. They also have a certain level of tolerance for fresh water meaning attacks would be comparatively more common. Just when you thought it was safe to go in the rivers. After all, just read about the Jersey Shore Attacks of 1916. Pure terror; it was so scary, it was the main inspiration for Jawsnote  This again, sounds threatening. Until you remember the primary reason bull sharks even go into freshwater is its because females prefer fresh and shallow waters as nurseries for their babies. Almost all of the big bull sharks implicated in attacks turned out to be pregnant mothers-to-be whom were potentially more aggressive due to stresses therein and the need to protect their unborn. And even with them being astronomically more common in areas people frequent with choppy, murky water that makes attacks more likely; the chance of a bite is still astronomically low. Their number of seemingly unprovoked attacks is far outweighed by provoked incidents where people trying to catch, kill, or harass the shark were injured.
  • Pilot fish take advantage of this trope, forming a symbiotic relationship with sharks (or turtles or rays); the shark (usually the aforementioned oceanic whitetip) gets parasite removal, while the pilot fish gets a reliable bodyguard in the hostile open ocean.
  • Ragged tooth sharks bear live young... which eat each other while still in their mother's womb. Out of the original 15 fetuses, only two generally survive until birth, and even that is only because the womb is split into two sections.
  • There is a certain South African tourist spot where you can feed great whites by hand from a boat. They act like big, aquatic, tooth-filled puppies!
  • Shark Knife. That is all.
  • Subverted by the Whale Shark. It is even more like a whale than the name implies — it is the largest existing shark on earth, and feeds entirely on plankton. It is a Gentle Giant of the seas that lets divers pat it.
    • Basking sharks are harmless to humans, too. Though they look damned weird when their mouths are fully open.
    • Zebra sharks are an adorable species of nocturnal shark which dwell at the bottom of the sea, they appear to be extreme doormats during daylight and even at night, they feed on crabs and bony fish rather than humans. It's still unwise to provoke them, though; they have occasionally bitten divers who did obnoxious things like pulling their tails.
    • The Megamouth shark, a very rare deep-sea shark with a huge mouth, but only eats shrimps.
    • The sand tiger shark. Despite its fearsome appearance and strong swimming ability, is a docile and slow-swimmer with no confirmed human fatalities. Its fearsome appearance and large size with its relative docility makes it a popular choice in public aquariums.
    • This trope is subverted by dogfish, (a type of catshark) the smallest sharks. Most are just one or two feet long, and they're about as cute as fish ever get. Just don't touch them, as their dorsal fins are covered in a mildly toxic venom.
    • A number of shark species are harmless to humans because it is simply implausible for a human to ever share their environment, like the goblin shark which occurs at extreme depths, or the Greenland Shark which lives in frigid arctic waters. Although it's probably pretty good that the Greenland shark does so since some research will find them capable of giving humans nightmares. Such as the one who ate a polar bear. Turns out, that for these things, it's not that Bears Are Bad News, it's that bears are food. The one who was found with an entire reindeer in its stomach deserves an honorable mention as well. Actually, the Inuit has legends of the shark attacking kayaks, and although no confirmed cases of human predation exists, given its willingness to eat bears and reindeer, it is not wholly unlikely that it would take a human from time to time.
    • Great whites, of all things, are not particularly bad as far as large predatory sharks go. While giving them a wide berth is mandatory unless you are extremely experienced (and even people who know what they are doing still know to exercise utmost caution), they are not particularly aggressive towards humans (who, for one thing, are simply not worth their while as prey due to minimal body fat) as long as they are not startled and their personal space is respected. They are far from Gentle Giant status, but unless you're bleeding or have managed to scare them or piss them off, they are generally pretty apathetic towards divers.
  • Some sharks can be dangerous to deep sea divers, which is why many who visit sharks in the seas learn to read their body language. Despite essentially being a living torpedo in shape, sharks can convey their intentions by arching their back, shifting their jaws and eyes back, and by swimming in particular patterns. Any diver who ignores or fails to act upon such body language is in danger of failing to spot an impending attack. If a diver learns the tricks, however, they can not only know when best to leave the water but also, with some species, know how to avoid inviting an attack in the first place. One example is to swim below the shark - sharks usually attack from below, so if a diver gets below them, the shark will be wary and will treat the diver as a fellow predator rather than as potential prey.
  • Because Australia wasn't dangerous enough yet, the 2010-2011 Queensland flooding disaster has allowed aggressive bull sharks to roam the streets of Brisbane. They also have the only known golf course water hazard that includes sharks.
  • Beware! It's the Shark Attack Cupcake ... Mountain?
  • In a 2007 subversion, a Coney Island (New York City) lifeguard rescued a (2-foot-long) shark from panicked beachgoers attacking it out of blind fear.
  • Brook Watson, the British merchant and trader from the 17th century, and later Lord Mayor of London, was attacked by an unidentified shark at the harbor in Havana at age 14. It ate his right leg before he was saved by his fellow crewmen. He lived on to his remarkable career despite his handicap, although his political enemies poked fun at his predicament. Eventually, he was immortalized in the painting Watson and the Shark by John Copley (who had clearly never seen a shark), meant to encourage other orphans to seek out a long a good life no matter their situation.
  • Inverted more often. Sharks kill maybe a dozen of humans a year. Humans kill tens of millions of sharks a year. Various forms of shark are regularly on the menu in many seafood-eating cultures. This has some strange effects; on one hand, Icelanders bury sharks in sand and let them ferment to produce hákarl, which is apparently one of the most vile-smelling and vile-tasting foods on Earth (to the point that it gives the other Nordic countries — who invented lutefisk, which, as you might know, dissolves silver — nightmares), but on the other hand many Pacific shark populations are under threat from the Chinese kitchen, where shark fin soup (which owes its flavour almost entirely to the other ingredients, as shark fin is nearly tasteless and used only for texture and prestige) is a delicacy but often leads to fishermen catching sharks, cutting off their fins, and leaving the creatures to die in the sea.note  Aren't we Badass? Since many species have been driven to endangerment and their future remains in doubt, that's just one way to look at it.
  • If sharks could edit TV Tropes, they'd name a page after orcas instead.
    • Orcas, being Devious Dolphins, have a higher place on the food chain, beating sharks to death before eating their livers, or just grabbing them by the nose and flipping them over to paralyze them. Sharks will flee an area immediately if they discover nearby orcas. Except for the Whitetips, who are too damn hungry to feel fear.
    • Not even the seemingly invincible Megalodon was immune to this. Pods of orca are likely a contributing factor to their extinction, able to prey on both juveniles as well as potentially grown adults. The gargantuan sperm whale, Livyatan was also a competitor and potential predator as possibly the only carnivore which could outsize the largest shark.
    • In turn, orcas in the wild are almost completely harmless to humans, with the only fatalities coming from captive orcas.
  • Subverted with the Angelshark which looks more like a Manta Ray. It's generally a bottom dweller that feeds only on other fish. However, if it's provoked or if its tail is grabbed, it can bite and leave grave lacerations because of its sharp teeth.
  • The basking shark is a filter feeder, but it's been theorized that their carcasses are responsible for the idea of the Stock Ness Monster and other plesiosaur-shaped cryptids: the lower jaw rots away first, leaving only the spine and fins in a plesiosaur-like shape.
  • If we wish to stretch the definition of 'shark' a bit, there are a number of teams that have sharks in their name or use sharks as their mascot, including the NHL's San Jose Sharks, arena football's Jacksonville Sharks, and the Chinese Basketball Association's Shanghai Sharks. How 'threatening' they are depends on how their season is going.


 
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Alternative Title(s): Everythings Even Worse With Sharks, Everythings Worse With Sharks

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Die-O-Rama #14: Sharked

Crash REALLY needs to pay attention to the signs. But then, this isn't the only Die-O-Rama where a shark eats him, either.

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