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Neo: What are you trying to tell me? That I can dodge bullets?

Morpheus: No, Neo. I'm trying to tell you that when you're ready, you won't have to.

Some characters can Dodge the Bullet; move so fast that not even a high-velocity round, or maybe not even a Very High Velocity Round can hit them. They just move out of the way.

These characters, as the trope name implies, are the opposite. They don't move out of the bullet's way - they literally don't need to. The bullet itself will avoid hitting them. There could be many reasons for this - from psychokinetic power all the way up to sheer dumb luck. The end result is the same regardless: Guns Are Worthless against them, and all they have to do is stand there.

This trope comes in two different flavours:

  1. The character uses Mind Over Matter to stop the bullets in their tracks. From there, they can release the bullets at any time, and they'll just clatter harmlessly to the ground.
  2. The bullet literally dodges the character; instead of stopping, it goes around him without even slowing.

This does not happen in Soviet Russia. Compare Plot Armor, which is the metafictional protection offered to main characters and sometimes can appear to serve this purpose (especially if Stormtroopers are involved). Also compare A-Team Firing, where bullets dodge everybody, no matter how many bullets/people there are.

Examples of Bullet Dodges You include:


First Version

Anime & Manga

  • In Elfen Lied, the Diclonius can block or deflect bullets depending on the caliber. Pistol rounds are simply blocked, but larger rifle rounds have to be deflected. The only gun that is known to have killed one was an assault rifle with armor piercing rounds at point blank range. People have tried to kill Lucy with both .50 BMG anti materiel rifles and Desert Eagles loaded with tungsten bullets, but without success.


Films

  • Both Magneto and Jean Grey do this in the X Men movies and comics, using control of magnetism and telekinesis respectively.
  • The Matrix, as the quote above suggests. Neo, when he finally becomes The One, is able to stop a hail of bullets by simply willing it, causing the bullets to stop dead in their tracks and fall to the ground. Strangely, he can't do the same with swords.
  • The Powered Armour from District 9 is capable of this.


Live Action TV

  • When Buffy the Vampire Slayer gets a temporary magical upgrade to fight Adam, she stops machine gun fire in mid-air and turns an RPG into a dove.
  • Khalek does this in the Stargate SG-1 episode "Prototype." A lot. Unfortunately (for him), it only works when he knows the bullets are coming, so Mitchell distracts him by shooting at him while Daniel comes at him through a door on the other side of the room.
  • There are several episodes of Charmed where either Prue or Paige use their telekinesis to deflect bullets, or Piper uses her freezing power to stop them in midair.
  • Heroes - Matt Parkman fires a round of bullets at Sylar, who stops them with one hand. He then flicks them right back into Matt. Ouch.


Video Games

  • In The World Ends With You, Joshua does this whenever Sho tries to shoot him, and the bullets end up falling to the ground harmlessly.
  • In one cutscene during the finale, one major villain in Bayonetta stops Bayonetta's bullets by stopping time, then reverses the bullets' direction. Bayonetta manages to dodge them though.
  • Ghost from SaGa can do this.


Other

  • Mages from Mage: The Ascension and Mage: The Awakening can do this with the Forces arcanum / sphere, manipulating the velocities of bullets.
  • Similar to the first version, Faevv in Juathuur unravels an arrow fired at her.
  • In Anthony Horowitz's Evil Star, protagonist Matt does this at the climax. Too bad it doesn't prevent the bad guys from releasing the Sealed Evil in a Can

Second Version

Anime & Manga

  • Happens in the Trigun anime (not manga) for Vash the Stampede and Legato Bluesummers. This is most noticeable when an entire gang blaze away at Vash with automatic rifles for several seconds... and just leave a perfect outline in the wall behind him.
    • In that scene there's an implication that the mooks were under orders not to kill, and were firing just to pin him down. But later, there's an incident wherein Vash and Wolfwood casually walk toward a gang stronghold, with gang members continuously firing on them with various calibers of fire, and missing.
  • In the finale of Madlax, after Margaret merges with her two other split-off parts, she gains the ability to telekinetically deflect the bullets Monday shoots at her. Which is a Crowning Moment of Awesome, by the way.
  • In Dragon Ball and Dragonball Z, any warrior powerful enough can do this easily. Young Gokuu deflects bullets rolling his staff during the Red Ribbon arc.
    • Gohan (as the Great Saiyaman) and Master Muten Roshi (and maybe Krillin/Kuririn, I can't remember) just grabbed them out of the air. Yes, with submachine guns. Which may actually be more intimidating than what Neo did.
  • In To Aru Majutsu no Index, Accelerator is able to control vectors - one of the unconscious aspects of this ability being that of reversing any vector that works on him. As a result, he not only deflects bullets, he reflects them back into the barrel of the gun.
    • Another example from Index is Misaka Mikoto, whose control over electricity also allows her to manipulate magnetic fields and stop bullets cold. She uses this to great effect when fighting the Hound Dogs during the Academy City Invasion arc.
  • In The Tomorrow War, the final book of the Wingman series, Viktor and Hawk are revealed to be "angels", people who can travel between dimensions, not necessarily of their own will, and can influence events to the point of having supernatural abilities. Toward the end of the book, several soldiers try to shoot Viktor, and the bullets merely pass through him, as he's not allowed to die.


Comic Books

  • A slightly more plausible variant occurs in a recent Transformers comic where Soundwave uses his communications abilities to hack the Air Force's missile guidance systems so they all miss the Decepticons.
  • In one issue of Gold Digger, Brianna shoots Pee Bees, little bullets with an AI to hurt only bad guys. She releases them willy nilly, causing one of the mages to try to deflect them, only to discover he didn't need to. However, as they are too small to house an advanced AI, they, for example, think someone stealing a kiss is bad.


Films

  • Book of Eli has the titular character shot at numerous times without being hit. This may be mundane - in post-apocalyptic America ammunition is unreliable and scarce enough that people probably can't afford to practice shooting with it - or may be magic.
    • While still (appropriately) miraculous, it's more than likely mundane. When Carnegie shoots Eli point blank near the end, not only does the bullet hit him, the injury from it eventually leads to Eli's death. Subverting not only this trope but Made of Iron as well.
  • In The Fifth Element, Jean-Baptiste Emmanuel Zorg demonstrates a gun that has avoiding friendly fire as its special feature. Even if you aim directly at your own units, the bullets will just circumnavigate around them.
  • Another occurrence in a dream sequence in Ali G Indahouse. The title character is left with a Bullethole Outline, though it also outlines... something that's not really there.


Literature

  • In the Jack West Jr. series by Matthew Reilly, some characters have Warblers, which generate electromagnetic interference, causing bullets to 'dodge' those in close proximity.
  • In Isabel Allende's Forest of the Pygmies, Alexander Cold is given a magical amulet with this power.
    • Actually it wasn't avoiding friendlies, the bullets were navigating a 180 degree turn to hit the pre-programmed target he'd already set. He was simply firing at his allies for showmanship.
  • In The Book of Mormon, Samuel the Lamanite preaches repentance to the Nephites and foretells Christ's birth. Many of the Nephites shoot arrows and throw rocks at Samuel, but divine power prevents anything from hitting him.
  • Bink's talent in the Xanth books could be seen as the magical version: Any spell that would harm him, even Magician-caliber, is pushed aside by seeming coincidence and dumb luck. Unfortunately for him, his talent has a very precise definition of "harm", meaning that there are spells that can incapacitate him. And of course, he has no such protection against non-magical methods of attack.


Video Games


Webcomics

  • In Juathuur, Faevv unravels a "bullet" made of magically manipulated water.
  • The eponymous protatonist of the webcomic Mind Mistress has a Velocity Redirection Field built into her Powered Armor that does this to any fast-moving object that approaches her. Naturally, that includes bullets.


Other

  • George Washington apparently had horses shot out from under him, his coat hit several times, but was never hit himself. This is either a case of mutant powers, divine intervention, or dumb luck.
    • More than likely a mundane second example, as the old smoothbores were already inaccurate and firing accuracy drops quickly in a firefight.
  • Older Than Print: While bullets hadn't been invented yet, the Norse god Baldur had this by virtue of all of creation having sworn not to harm him. The other gods regularly engaged in Comedic Sociopathy by shooting and throwing stuff at him, knowing it would turn aside. Then Loki found the one thing that hadn't taken the oath...
  • Mages from the New World of Darkness can fit this with the Fate (Entropy in the old?) arcanum, which can just amount to being incredibly lucky, all the friggin' time.
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