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Playing With / There Is No Kill Like Overkill

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Basic Trope: More force is used than necessary to kill something.

  • Straight: Shooting an unarmed person with a minigun, then setting him on fire, then hitting him in the balls with the sledgehammer.
  • Exaggerated:
  • Downplayed:
  • Justified:
    • The victim is extremely hard to kill.
    • Alternatively, the attacker really hates the victim.
    • The victim is so dangerous that the attacker wants to make sure that he stays down for good.
    • It would be troublesome if not outright dangerous to the attacker to use only proportionate force when overkill would get things done safer and more efficiently, eg. calling artillery on a sniper instead of risking a Sniper Duel or leveling a building rather than running a gauntlet of ambushes and booby traps to clear it.
  • Inverted:
  • Subverted:
    • The Protagonist blows up a mook with a grenade launcher, but there was the battle tank behind him.
    • The Protagonist blows up the Big Bad with a grenade launcher, shoots him with 30 miniguns, lights him on fire, and smashes him with a sledgehammer. The Big Bad survives.
    • The Worf Barrage.
  • Double Subverted: When his superior thanks him for eliminating the battle tank, he replies "what tank?"
  • Parodied: The victim is killed by a massive barrage of teddy bears, soft pillows, comfy chairs and water balloons.
  • Zig Zagged: Having defeated Alice, Bob menaces her with a small army's worth of weapons. He ends up shooting her with a tiny gun instead... which ends up completely vaporizing Alice with an immense, spectacular explosion anyways. Turns out the unimpressive gun actually fires miniature nuclear warheads.
  • Averted:
    • The amount of force used to kill someone is equal to the person itself.
    • There is no amount of "kill", overt or otherwise, that is going to stop this enemy.
  • Enforced: "The show will be more awesome if the characters do way more than necessary."
  • Lampshaded: "Isn't all this a bit much?"
  • Invoked: Bob brings a minigun when everyone else brings a pistol
  • Exploited: Alice first send her minions in to take care of Bob. After they're defeated, Alice ambushes Bob, knowing that he is left exhausted.
  • Defied:
  • Discussed: "Why do we always have to be absolutely sure that every bad guy is dead?"
  • Conversed: "Well...
  • Implied: The heroes go through a lengthy Lock-and-Load Montage.
  • Deconstructed:
    • The heroes use so much ammo that they run out and are quickly killed.
    • Alternatively, going all-out with the weaponry causes so much collateral damage that heroes fail their mission.
    • The heroes are considered insane for being so excessive and everyone else is wary around them.
    • Summon Bigger Fish backfires as the monster they summoned is even worse than the previous one.
  • Reconstructed:
    • The heroes bring more ammo to account for their increased use.
    • The heroes have an explicit license to do whatever it takes to complete the mission, collateral damage be damned.
    • The heroes fail to overkill one villain and their side pays greatly for it when, Not Quite Dead, he returns to wreak havoc. Now their allies understand that it may be grisly, but some things are better safe than sorry.
  • Played For Laughs:
    • The heroes look absolutely ridiculous under the amount of weapons they have on them.
    • The amount of Dakka Produced by the combined weapons fire forms a Wave Motion Gun, even if no such weapon is being used.
  • Played For Drama: The Heroes are on the receiving end of such a barrage.
  • Played For Horror: The film is about a Sociopathic Soldier that doesn't just kills his targets, but goes well above and beyond what anybody would consider "sane" or even "humane" in his violence. Rules of engagement, war treaties and basic humanity are all disregarded for a desire to have the biggest "boom" possible, all day, every day.

I just riddled the villain full of bullets, set his body on fire, called in an air strike, and as I was driving away to escape said air strike, ran his dead body over about four times.

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