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Wager Slave

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Betting is appealing, both in Real Life and in fiction. It adds a sense of risk to otherwise normal proceedings, makes everything more interesting. Unfortunately, "gambling is fun" is a poor Aesop, not to mention that it's hard to make money actually mean anything in a work of fiction. So there's an easy solution: Rather than the loser giving the winner money, the loser has to obey the winner's orders—either once or for an entire day.


Often involves Unresolved Sexual Tension, though good luck seeing it resolved. Cousin trope to Lost Him in a Card Game. Subtrope of Humiliating Wager. If the servitude is serious, see Absurdly High-Stakes Game.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Touma and Mikoto in A Certain Magical Index set up one of these when their schools face off in a sports festival. Mikoto wins, and wonders what she should make him do. Eventually, she basically makes him go on a date with her (although she doesn't tell him that), which gets interrupted by random super-powered sociopaths. So, you know, an average day.
  • In The World God Only Knows, Haqua challenges Keima to a board game, with a Wager Slave as the penalty. As it becomes increasingly clear that she is hopelessly outmatched, Haqua starts saying, "I know I said anything... But not anything! Just not anything, okay!" Keima, however, only wants to ask questions about his situation and Elsie. Haqua finally lashes out at him: "Aren't you even a tiny bit interested in me?!"
  • The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya has Haruhi invoke this on whoever is late (usually Kyon). In a slight subversion, he just has to pay for everyone's lunch.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh!, Jonouchi gets this done to him by Otogi. Otogi wins and puts Jonouchi in a dog suit, forcing him to obey all his commands—until Yugi steps in to free him. It's not treated kinkily in the anime, but that hasn't stopped fans from taking it that way.
  • In Gantz, Kurono is forced to date a non-hottie as a result of one of these. The sexual tension is, in fact, resolved.
  • In a breather episode of Soul Eater just after the Kishin had been revived, the main cast play one of these in a three-on-three basketball game. If Kid's team loses, then they move all the pictures in his house slightly off; if Maka's team loses, she has to spend the weekend with her father. Maka loses and her Bumbling Dad is so happy he vomits.
  • Higurashi: When They Cry has the main characters' club often handing out these kinds of penalties to the loser of the game of the day. One memorable result of this is Keiichi being forced to walk home in a maid outfit.
    • This is a rare one where there is no sexual tension,note  but there may be extremely violent murder involved when things inevitably go wrong.

    Fan Fiction 
  • Advice and Trust: This was invoked as part of Asuka's Zany Scheme to reveal her and Shinji's Secret Relationship to Misato. Shinji was supposed to lose a chess match to Pen Pen, becoming his servant for a month (Asuka won him back the next day).

    Films — Animated 
  • An Extremely Goofy Movie. Max makes a bet with Bradley about who would win the X-Games. The loser would be towel-boy to the other. Though Max wins in the end, he decides to let Brad off on the bet (the guy was about to get pounded by his betrayed right-hand man anyways).

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Phantom Menace. A literal and extreme example of this is how Anakin and his mother ended up as slaves to Watto. They were originally slaves to Gardulla the Hutt, but she lost them to Watto during a bet on podraces. The novelization and some EU material actually state that Watto is way better than Gardulla, though still rather harsh. Then during the movie, Qui-Gon Jinn inverts this trope to free Anakin during the local podrace. He succeeds, but unfortunately they have to leave his mother behind as Watto didn't agree to bet both his slaves. She does get freed later on though during Attack of the Clones, but her loss at the hands of the Sandpeople is the beginning of Anakin's Start of Darkness.
  • Hackers. Dade Murphy and Kate Libby have a contest to see who's the best hacker. If Kate wins Murphy will do scut work for her: "Scan, crack copyrights, whatever I want."
  • In Space Jam, the Big Game is played to decide whether the Looney Tunes— and later, Michael Jordan— will become slaves to Swackhammer and work in his theme park.

  • In Four Clues for Rani, during a treasure hunt game, Rani bets Vidia that if her team finishes first, she [Rani] will do whatever the fast-flying fairy wants for one week, and vice versa.
  • The Ur-Example may be the Indian epic Mahabharata in which Yudhistir the eldest and “wisest” of the Pandava brothers first bets a gold necklace, then a thousand gold coins, a thousand maids, a thousand elephants, then his personal chariot, his kingdom’s entire treasury, then his kingdom, then his own brothers, then himself and finally his wife Draupadi. He loses it all, going from being an emperor to a slave whose wife is brought to the court to be sexually humiliated.

    Live Action TV 
  • At least twice on The Brady Bunch:
    • Greg bets Marcia that he's a better driver than she is, with the stakes being the loser does the winner's chores for a week. Greg loses.
    • Bobby challenges Greg to a chin-up contest, and that Greg must be able to do twice as many s Bobby to win, with the stakes being that the loser has to do whatever the winner wants. Greg loses again. He has to do Bobby's chores for a week AND must bring Bobby along on his date Saturday night.
  • On the Olympics episode of M*A*S*H, Hawkeye and BJ (the two team captains) bet that the loser must push the winner around in a wheelchair for a month.
  • On Taxi, Tony and Latka have a bet where the loser can't talk for a week. Latka loses and comes up with unique ways to communicate (cue cards, a prerecorded tape) AND stick it to Tony at the same time.
  • How I Met Your Mother has the famous "slap bet," where Barney and Marshall get in a bet over what Robin's deep dark secret is. When Barney's guess of "porn" appears to be right, he slaps Marshall... but when it turns out that was in error, the restitution is that Marshall gets to slap him at 5 random points in the future.
  • On Sliders, the gang lands in a world where women are the dominant gender and Arturo runs for mayor of San Francisco. Wade and Arturo bet on the election and Arturo loses. They slide onto the next world and immediately after the leave, it's revealed that Arturo actually won. Not knowing this, Arturo had to be Wade's personal slave for the duration of their next slide (nine days).

  • Tower of God
    • In a bet between Endorsi and Anaak on whoever killed the Bull first, Anaak wagered Black March, whereas Endorsi wagered herself. Since Bam killed the Bull, nothing really happened.
    • More seriously, Prince wagered Yeon, who was dependent on him because of her debts in a strength competition. Viole won, but set Yeon free.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • In 1983 in World Class, Jimmy Garvin lost a match against David Von Erich. As a result, Garvin and his valet/wife, Precious, had to spend a day working on the Von Erich ranch.
  • In 1988, Jerry Lawler won a match against Eddie Gilbert and Eddie's wife, Missy Hyatt, had to be Lawler's maid for a day.
  • In 2002, Ric Flair lost a match and was to become "Stone Cold" Steve Austin's "personal assistant" but Austin famously "took his ball and went home" before the punishment could be carried out.
  • At the 2014 "Hell in a Cell" pay-per-view event, the Bella Twins had a match wherein the loser of the match would become the winner's "personal assistant" (a polite way of putting it) for one month - and should the loser fail to perform those duties to the winner's satisfaction, she will be forced to leave WWE. Nikki won.

    Video Games 
  • Aveyond 2: Ean's Quest has Emma and Rye bet on whether or not the former can win a fighting tournament, with the loser having to obey 5 commands of the winner's choosing. Rye being a Butt-Monkey, he'd always get the shorter end of the stick even if he wins, because Emma would always find a way to turn his own commands against him.

    Western Animation 
  • An episode of Tracey McBean involved a dare in which someone had to ride down Mount Massacre. The loser had to be the winner's slave for a whole week.
  • Clone High does this when the principals of two schools competing in a basketball game decide that the losing principal has to do the winner's laundry...for a week.
  • The Simpsons: In the Episode “Dead Putting Society”, Homer bets Ned that whoever's son doesn't win a minigolf tournament has to mow his lawn in his wife's Sunday dress. The Tournament ends in a draw when both Bart and Todd decide to quit on the final hole. Since neither son won, both Homer and Ned end up doing it. Homer gets pissed off when Ned enjoys it, recalling his college fraternity prank days.
  • Happens on The Venture Bros.: Dean dares Hank to drink some awful substance, and in exchange Dean will be Hank's slave.
  • In the first episode of The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, Mandy offered to play a game with the Grim Reaper. If Grim wins, he gets the hamster he sought. Grim's ego led him to offer that if he loses, he would become Billy and Mandy's best friend. Unfortunately for Grim, the hamster jumped into his eye socket making Grim lose a game of limbo. Grim becomes their best friend.
  • This is the plot point and reason for the South Park episode "The Red Badge of Gayness". It's averted at the end.
  • This provides the plot for The Angry Beavers episode "You Promised!", when Norbert promises Dagget he'll be his slave for a day in one year in exchange for the last "Lickety Split" candy in the house, not expecting Dagget to actually remember his promise.
  • In an episode of Lilo & Stitch: The Series, Jumba and Pleakley get caught up in Lilo and Stitch's argument over who's better at capturing experiments, and each agrees to coach one of them in capturing a pair of experiments. They agree to bet that whoever's protegee captures the experiment first, the other has to perform "the Funky Glognart, the insipid dance of a thousand hours". Meanwhile, Lilo and Stitch learn a lesson in teamwork and end up capturing both experiments together, which means both Pleakley and Jumba have to perform the dance.
  • The Fairly OddParents: Timmy made a bet against Anti-Cosmo and the Head Pixie. If the Fairies win the Fairly Odd Games, Anti-Cosmo and Head Pixie will do anything Timmy asked. If the Anti-Fairies win, Timmy will become Anti-Cosmo's godson. If the Pixies win, Timmy will work at Pixies, Inc. in a very boring job. Timmy won the bet and demanded the others to do... nothing. He believed they've learned their lesson about cheating.