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The act of killing oneself by sitting in a tub and slitting one's blood vessels. The warm water is conducive to an easy flow of blood, so this is a comparatively painless method of suicide and tends to leave a relatively unblemished (and thus more dignified) corpse. And the billowing clouds of blood look really cool, too.
Perhaps because of its having been used by the Roman Stoic philosopher Seneca, who killed himself at the command of his former pupil, the emperor Nero (as depicted in the page illustration from the Nuremberg Chronicle), this act has often been associated with characters who are permitted "honorable deaths" or who take this way out as an alternative to submitting to tyranny.
A Death Trope, so be prepared for Spoilers. Sometimes a result of being Driven to Suicide. Not to be confused with another popular way to lose your life in a bathtub.
Anime & Manga
- Kei Kishimoto from Gantz does this before the series took place. When she comes back to life you can see a flash back of it in episode 6.
- Kakeru Satsuki's sister from 11eyes does this before the beginning of the series. It is flashbacked to in episode 1.
- A flashback in King of Thorn reveals that Kasumi attempted this, but was interrupted before she could finish.
- Implied to have been attempted in Neon Genesis Evangelion by Asuka, post Mind Rape.
- Sakura Gari
- Souma's stepmother committed suicide this way when Souma was a child. Or so you'd think. The truth is way more horrible.
- When Souma himself is suicidal after Masataka brutally calls him out on his horrible treatment of him, he's so broken that he cuts his wrists open and places his bleeding arms in the same bath tub where his stepmom died. He lives, though.
- Several people die this way Case Closed, though sometimes it's murder disguised as a suicide.
- It's never shown on screen, but Megumi from Rurouni Kenshin has the classic vertical scar marks on her wrists, and she mentions having attempted suicide.
- In the Shiki manga, Seishin is shown to have attempted this in college. It didn't work.
- My Immortal has Ebony jumping into the bathtub after slitting her wrists and getting the blood all over her clothes. She takes a steak and contemplates sticking it into her heart to kill herself.
- Duo Maxwell has killed himself this way in at least one Gundam Wing yaoi fic, usually over Heero.
Films -- Live-Action
- Arvid does this in Swing Kids.
- In The Godfather Part II, Tom Hagen visits Pentangeli in prison and talks about this practice in the Roman Empire, hinting that if Pentangeli does this, his family will be spared. He does, and they are. The shot showing the outcome references the painting The Death of Marat (a french revolutionary who did not commit suicide but was killed in a bath)
- It's strongly implied that Dr. Weir's wife Claire killed herself this way in Event Horizon.
- Happens in the opening scene of Sofia Coppola's 1999 hit film The Virgin Suicides.
- Attempted suicide in The Last Emperor. Done with a sink rather than a bathtub but the idea is still there.
- The protagonist's sister kills herself in a bath in Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance.
- Stan Uris of IT is driven into this method, and paints the word "It" in his own blood on the shower wall.
- Lady Macbeth goes out this way in the Australian film of Macbeth.
- In the movie 13 Ghosts , the past of the Angry Princess has her being a beautiful woman who attempted to fix an "imperfection" and bled herself dry because she became blind in one eye.
- Double Subverted in the Finnish movie Prinsessa. Christina, a mentally ill woman, cuts her wrists in a bathtub, with only the intention of draining away her "bad blood". She ends up unintentionally bleeding to death.
- Mitya does this at the end of Burnt by the Sun.
- In Slumdog Millionaire , the main character's brother goes out this way combined with the trope Suicide by Cop. Sitting in the bath-tub in a tub of stolen Rupees with his pistol aimed at the bathroom door way, and taking out as many gangsters as he can. In the end he dies, but not before bleeding on his former boss' cash. This means that not only is the mafia boss now missing a few cronies, but he also has to do some laundering on his dirty, bloody cash, if you know what I mean (I.E Literally).
- Rules Of Attraction has Sean's secret admirer, who, upon being so badly heartbroken when Sean leaves with Lauren's roommate, promptly committing suicide this way.
- Afterlife had one character who slit her wrists in the bath after psychic Allison Mundy claimed to see her dead mother behind her.
- Dexter subverts this twice, in different ways: first, with a serial killer who kills every third victim by making it look like this sort of suicide. His final kill was Rita, in the bathtub of Dexter's house. Later, Dexter helps an extremely troubled girl escape after she just committed her first murder, and tells her to meet him at that same house. When he can't find her in the house, the audience is led to believe she may have committed suicide. He then finds her in the same bathtub the previous murder occurred in. She's just taking a bath.
- In One Tree Hill, Alex attempts suicide this way, but Julian gets there in time
- In World War Z, in Japan, a beautiful young woman slit her wrists in her bath when the dead rose. It isn't pretty a few hours later, when the otaku, while fleeing the zombies, stumbles upon her.
- In Stephen King's IT, this is how the adult Stanley Uris kills himself when he learns that the title Eldritch Abomination has returned.
- In White Night of The Dresden Files, a despair-enducing vampire tries, and nearly succeeds, to make Elaine do this. Fortunately, Harry gets through to her in time, after which she wraps herself in a towel and blasts the vampire with lightning.
- One character midway through On a Pale Horse kills himself this way, when Zane is still getting used to his role as The Grim Reaper.
- Outcast Cheryl Stuphin kills herself this way in Slam Book, thanks to a prank gone wrong and a drunken, hateful rant from one of the main character's friends. The chapter ends with her in the tub about to open a vein, followed by the announcement of her death.
- Implied in the video to Everytime by Britney Spears, before the All Just a Dream ending (which was apparently the result of Executive Meddling).
- The War on Drugs by Barenaked Ladies is about suicide in general, but also focuses on one particular character in the first half of the song:
In the dream I refuse to have
She falls asleep in a lukewarm bath
We're left to deal with the aftermath again
- In Rent, Roger's girlfriend April killed herself this way before the start of the play, leaving a suicide note reading, "We've got AIDS."
- Do It Again, a custom Doom level, is about doing this to yourself.
- In Heavy Rain, the mother of one of the Origami Killer's victims attempts this, but is rescued by Shelby. (Then again, she cut across rather than down, so she might not have been very serious about it... that or research was not done.)
- If Alex from Eternal Darkness examines a bathtub inside her family home, the camera rapidly zooms in on the suddenly-full tub in which a corpse of Alex lies in a pool of her own blood, prompting a Jump Scare.
- The Nostalgia Critic mimics the scene from IT at the end of his review, except that -- instead of writing "It" -- he scrawls the word "balloon" on the shower wall.
- Spoony made a reference to doing this, but apologized for it after learning that a fan of his really had committed suicide.
- Parodied on Robot Chicken. A teenage girl is about to off herself this way when her dad barges into the bathroom to take a dump. It's implied she ends up drowning herself instead due to the sight, sound, and stench.
- Lucius Annaeus Seneca was probably the Trope Codifier, if not the Trope Maker. He is referenced by name in The Godfather (See Films, above.)
- His contemporary Petronius Arbiter, also starring in Quo Vadis, did this too, but without a bath. He preferred to have a nice feast. Oh, and taking a nap before he actually died. That's because he was awesome. (He dictated an account of all of Nero's perversions before bleeding out. Understandably, this took quite a while; he had his wounds bound up with tourniquets so he'd last long enough.)