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Playing With / Abnormal Ammo

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Basic Trope: Weapons fire things other than bullets.

  • Straight:
    • Bob's gun, which looks normal, fires frying pans.
    • Bob's gun fires live banana slugs.
  • Exaggerated: Bob's tiny plastic gun appears to be nothing more than a toy at first glance, but fires just about anything, including pianos, trucks, and killer whales.
  • Downplayed:
    • Bob's gun shoots paper clips.
    • Bob uses bullets, but paints them bright green so they stand out among everyone else's bullets.
  • Justified:
    • Bob hates bullets and would prefer to use just about anything else.
    • Alternatively, real bullets are not available, and Bob must make do with what he has.
    • Bob is quirky or insane.
    • Bob is trying to invoke Lethal Joke Item. Sure, no guard will take a man pointing a gun that looks like it was found in a box of cereal seriously, but when the gun shoots paperclips at supersonic speeds...
    • Bob is a monster hunter and carries silver bullets for use against werewolves, wood-lined holy water rounds for vampires, etc.
    • The projectiles are non-lethal because Bob's gun is meant to be a joke.
  • Inverted: Bullets are used for anything but shooting.
  • Subverted:
    • Bob calls his weapon the "Squirrel Gun". It's just a handgun with a squirrel painted on the side.
    • Bob's gun breaks or even explodes as a result of Abnormal Ammo.
    • Bob's water balloon mortar is about as deadly as it sounds, and gets laughed at continually.
  • Double Subverted:
    • He's loaded it with peanuts.
    • The resulting explosion takes out the enemy.
    • Everyone stops laughing when monsters only vulnerable to water start attacking.
  • Parodied:
    • Alice owns an ammo store that sells anything but bullets.
    • It's illegal to have a gun that fires bullets in this world, so people use literally everything else as ammo.
  • Zig Zagged:
    • Bob's gun is the above-mentioned "Squirrel Gun", but it fires peanuts. Yet those peanuts are actually disguised bullets. Only Alice replaced the disguised bullets with real peanuts. But it turns out that those are mystical peanuts that are as lethal as real bullets.
    • Bob's ammunition is different every episode; basically, his gun fires whatever is convenient for the plot.
  • Averted:
    • Bob's gun fires bullets.
    • No firearms are shown.
  • Enforced: "This is a family film, so we can't have anybody getting shot. Let's replace the bullets with something ridiculous."
  • Advertisement:
  • Lampshaded: "I've got a gun that shoots lit candles, and I'm not afraid to use it."
  • Invoked: Bob decides to load his gun with something other than bullets just for laughs.
  • Exploited: A burglar picks Bob's house because he knows that Bob doesn't use bullets.
  • Defied: Bob brings plenty of bullets.
  • Discussed: "Next time, stock up on real bullets."
  • Conversed: "They really shouldn't be shooting bowling balls at each other."
  • Implied:
    • We never get to see just what comes out of Bob's gun, but everyone laughs whenever he fires it.
    • Bob, getting ready for a firefight, brings his gun and a pack of paper clips.
  • Deconstructed: There's a reason why most guns use standard sorts of ammunition. The abnormal ammo just doesn't get results and is a bitch to load and fire, as well as requiring a specialized and possibly unwieldy weapon. While Bob's trying to remove a mangled frying pan from his weirdly-shaped rifle after a misfire, someone puts a perfectly normal bullet in his head.
  • Reconstructed: Bob's frying-pan rifle is certainly an unusual piece, unwieldy, and hard to carry ammo for. But while often he must rely on more conventional ammo, when he goes up against the Egg-People of Hardshell V, the gun makes him an unstoppable force. Even against regular humans, the surprise and shock-value of a frying-pan bombardment often makes it worth the trouble.
  • Played For Laughs: Bob shoots spider webs from his gun. Most of his friends laugh, but Alice says, "What the hell, Bob? A spider web gun will never kill Emperor Evulz."
  • Played For Drama: Bob's gun is somehow able to fire black holes. Everyone, including Bob, dies.
  • Untwisted: Bob's Abnormal Ammo is a Running Gag on the show. One day, Bob is shown buying bullets, but it turns out they're for some purpose other than shooting.

Back to Abnormal Ammo

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