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Nightmare Fuel / Jack Reacher

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Books

  • In The Killing Floor, Reacher tells a brief story of a soldier went AWOL and was imprisoned. Then, in prison, the guy was literally raped to death and when autopsied, a fucking pint of semen was found in his stomach.
    • The corrupt sheriff's death: he and his wife were both sliced up with surgical knives, the sheriff was nailed to the wall and his testicles were cut off and shoved down the wife's throat, the wife had her breasts cut off, and they both got their throats slit. Worse, the family of the guy Reacher went to prison with was given this same threat and the villains threatened to do things to his kids after they killed him and his wife
  • Worth Dying For is a veritable fountain of it. The farmhouse full of eight-year-olds' bones is perhaps the most chilling part of the entire novel, but the end of the novel could be a source of Fridge Horror since while most of the onscreen villains are taken care of, there is still an entire network of human traffickers that hasn't been dealt with. Which is almost certainly intentional.
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    • An additional source of fridge horror is in the story's intro. Eldridge Tyler is driving his eight-year-old granddaughter home from a shopping trip when he receives a call for help from his associates. By the end of the story, we learn that he and his associates are pedophiles who have been raping, torturing and killing young girls for years. And Eldridge has been spending who knows how much time alone with his granddaughter. One can only hope he knew to show some restraint.
  • The Hard Way has several horrifying cases. One is the story of a man whose buddies left him behind in Burkina Faso. Once it was established that he wasn't an important political prisoner and that nobody would pay for his release, he was kept in terrible conditions, and every year on his birthday, his captors would cut off one of his limbs. The second is the relationship between one of the major characters, a man whose wife and child have gone missing, and the child herself- the man is a control freak who went nuts at the idea of his wife leaving him. At one point, he threatened to rape her daughter with a potato peeler, and at one stage in the book he gathers the materials to do just that. Reacher, being Reacher, does not allow that to happen.
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  • Nothing To Lose has an entire town owned by one guy, who is making his workers recycle uranium without any protective gear. Quite a few of his goons are too sick from radiation poisoning to be of much use, and at least one guy dies from it. And Child does not stint on the descriptions.
  • Bad Luck and Trouble starts with the murder of Calvin Franz, who has been tortured for information in a process that involved both of his lower legs being broken with a length of iron. His death comes in the form of being dropped fully conscious from a helicopter at 3,000 feet.
    • Later in the story, Reacher and company discover the decomposing, fly-ridden remains of Tony Swan's pet dog. Swan left the house three weeks prior, intending to come back, but he never did. His dog died of thirst. Reacher is left very upset — not by the disturbing sight of the dog's corpse, but by the thought of a dog dying so slowly and painfully.
  • Running Blind features a corrupt FBI profiler who murders no less than five women just to disguise the motive for one murder. A kind of Diabolical Mastermind, she's left absolutely no physical evidence in all those murders, since she hypnotized all her victims to swallow their own tongues, hence suffocating themselves. Reacher has got to catch her in the act because nobody will believe him otherwise.
    • It gets worse. Reacher does catch her in the act- and the response from her coworkers and the other government agents who asked him to help in the first place? Try to pin the crimes on him so they won't have to admit the truth. If he hadn't talked his way out of it, the book would have ended with Reacher in jail.
  • Die Trying begins with Nathan Rubin being attacked and eventually killed. More specifically, he's beaten unconscious by some guys whom he catches breaking into his car. Then they shut him in the trunk, and once they're done using the car, they set it on fire. They leave him inside.
    "So he died, because for a split second he got brave. But not then. He died much later, after the split second of bravery had faded into long hours of wretched gasping fear, and after the long hours of fear had exploded into long minutes of insane screaming panic."
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    • Later on, Reacher's claustrophobic attack. It's terrifyingly realistic.
  • In Tripwire, the thirty-year-old skeletons of the crew of the crashed Huey. Reacher has the chance to go over them one by one and determine how they died. One of them is noted as having been only nineteen years old at the time of his death. Another burned to death with no other injuries. Halfway through, there's a passage where Reacher imagines what it must've been like in the helicopter, as it was getting torn up by enemy fire, then bursting into flame, then crashing into the jungle below. By the time he gets to the last skeleton, he's too upset to try to study it.
    • Also, the fate of the two police officers who stumble upon the Big Bad's operation. None of it is shown onscreen. Probably for the best.

Film

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/jack_reacher.jpg
  • As pictured, the opening sequence in which the then-unknown killer pans their scoped rifle across a street, focusing the crosshairs on various people, young and old, male and female, there's no real distinction between any of them. They're all possible targets.
    • And to make it even better, the simple fact that this shot is done in almost total silence. We don't hear the people on the street talking, or any birds chattering, it's deathly quiet and lets the moment sink in appropriately before the first shot is fired
  • Werner Herzog as the Zec manages to be completely terrifying despite not really doing anything but talk for the whole film. All he has to do is be himself, the Crazy Awesome director who seriously considered an offer to kill his lead actor, made a film on an active volcano, and ate one of his shoes.
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