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This woman has just cut, chopped, broken and burned five men beyond recognition... but no jury in America would ever convict her!

The character, or someone close to the character, has been raped. And now it's time to settle the score. It might develop into a Roaring Rampage of Revenge or Axe Crazy vigilantism, but it might also take a far more sophisticated turn.

Of course, the rape doesn't have to technically be rape. It could be a ongoing case of sexual harassment or stalking that finally make the victim snap. However, due to Double Standards, this narrative is normally limited to female characters.

The revenge can be divided into three kinds:

  1. Taking it out on the actual rapist.
  2. Going vigilante against offenders in general.
  3. Becoming a misandristic Omnicidal Maniac, perceiving men in general as guilty and wanting to get rid of them no matter if they have actually done anything or not.

In some stories, these three kinds of revenge are the stages in a slippery slope where one leads to the other.

In a way, the first stage on that slippery slope is an inversion Honor-Related Abuse, making sure that it is the molester rather then the victim who is Defiled Forever.

It goes downhill from there, with the third stage Crossing The Line Twice in a bad and not at all amusing way. In either case, Rape and Revenge accept the premise that rape constitutes permanent destruction, but adds the idea that it's not necessarily the victim who gets destroyed. She can avert being Defiled Forever by defiling her abuser back... or maybe it will turn into a black hole where everyone is damned.

While the victim doesn't necessarily have to do the fighting herself, it still has to be her revenge. If a male hero helps her to get revenge, it's still Rape And Revenge. If the quest for revenge is his own, then it's just plain Revenge instead, and if he's doing it against her will (or even with her as one of the targets) then it's Honor-Related Abuse instead.

Vengeance for violation is a subset of "Crime Pursued by Vengeance," one of the Thirty-Six Dramatic Situations recognized by Georges Polti.

No Real Life Examples, Please

Examples of Rape and Revenge include:


Anime and Manga

  • In Salaryman Kintaro, the titular character's blind girlfriend is raped and badly beaten. Kintaro, the leader of a badass gang, calmly and rationally decides to lead his gang on a driving rampage through the city. Scaring every other gang in the city into joining him, the rampage ends with ten thousand gangsters against the entire police force. When the rampage eventually stops, 3 men claim to be the rapists and are willing to take the punishment. However, Kintaro reveals that he knows it's not them. After a stirring speech about remembering this day, he peacefully surrenders to police.
  • In Berserk, Guts took violent revenge during his childhood on a pederast soldier named Donovan. Guts was raped after his adoptive father Gambino sold him to Donovan for the night. During the battle the following day, Guts followed Donovan when he ventured away from the main group and brutally killed him. In addition, his vendetta against Griffith in general after the Eclipse has very heavy undertones of this, given what Griffith did to his Love Interest Casca right in front of him, and the way it all but mirrored Guts' own traumatic childhood experience.
  • Suboshi tries to rape Miaka in Fushigi Yuugi because his Love Interest Yui was raped (or so she has been led to believe), and blames it on Miaka for not answering her calls for help and obsessing over Tamahome, whom Yui also liked. In actuality, the only reason Miaka didn't help Yui was because she couldn't ''hear'' Yui from outside of the book after changing out of her school uniform, which was the link between both girls (and Miaka was completely horrified when she realized it).
    • Later, Nakago kills the Kutou Emperor in cold blood as revenge for the man having raped him repeatedly as a pre-teen. (Though we don't find this out until the final episode/volume of the first series.)
  • Words Worth has an absolutely hilarious take on this: highlighted in the exchange between Maria and Prince Astral; wherein, she blasts him twenty years into the future, and utterly devastates him, in a fit of rape-induced rage.

 Maria: (furious) "Not only do you assault me, you also hurt my father! I'll never forgive you!"

Astral: (confused) "But... but that's not what you said earlier!"

Maria: (flustered) "Sh-shut up, you! And anyway, that was my body talking, against my own will!

Astral: "But that's ridiculous!"

Maria: (snide grin) "You actually think I enjoyed having some nasty Shadow man thingy inside me?! Heh, you must be crazy! Now you bastard, turned beast, I'll remove you from this world forever, and EVER!!"

Maria: (ominous echo) "Mystral Window!!"

  • In Narutaru, after the infamous "test tube" incident at the hands of Aki Honda and her vicious Girl Posse, Lonely Rich Kid Hiroko Kaizuka gets her hands on one of the series Shadow Dragons and proceeds to take violent revenge upon the Girl Posse in what proves to be her Start of Darkness. The absolute worst death of the entire rampage is reserved for Aki Honda herself, who gets raped with the Shadow Dragon's clawed finger before being ripped in half.
  • This trope was implied to have taken place in Black Butler, which is confirmed later. "Ciel" and his twin brother (the True Ciel Phantomhive) were gangraped by the cult that killed their parents, burned down their home, kept them prisoners and wanted to ritually sacrifice them to summon Sebastian Michaelis. After True Ciel (apparently) died in a gruesome way, "Ciel" hijacked the ritual and gained control of Sebastian... and his first order was to kill the cultists.


Comicbooks

  • In The Authority, Apollo is subdued and then raped by a member of a government-sponsored superteam given the directive to neutralize The Authority. In a later confrontation, this same super is paralyzed from the waist down by Apollo and the last we see of him is a look of horror on his face as The Midnighter, Apollo's boyfriend, stands over him with an evil grin, holding a rusty, but operational jackhammer.
  • At the end of Chuck Austen's heinously bad Church of Humanity arc in Uncanny X-Men, we find that this entire arc was an elaborate revenge scheme headed up by the leader of the aforementioned church, who was previously a Catholic nun who'd been raped by a priest and wanted to destroy the Catholic Church in retaliation, annihilate mutantkind just because she hated them, and set herself up as a sort of messiah to prove her importance all in one fell swoop.
  • In the Batman comics, the vigilante Pagan got her start by extracting violent revenge on the men who raped her sister (who later committed suicide).
  • Fables makes this Snow White's backstory. Yes, the Seven Dwarfs.


Fan Fiction

  • Batman fic The Doctors and the Nurses They Adore Me So by Lauralot features a male example in such a way that involves magnificent badassery, Squick, and no small amount of Woobie-ism when the results are unsatisfying. As if Jonathan Crane's life wasn't bad enough already.
  • Quite a few fan sequels to World Financial Crisis Gangbang involve this.
  • In Familiar47's Invader Zim fan-series, this is part of his character Skullene's backstory: after failing to assassinate Tallest Red, she was sent to prison, where Admiral Rizz (one of the Tallest's lackeys) repeatedly raped her, for the fun of it. Eventually she had enough, broke free during one of Rizz's "visits", killed him, and then proceeded to kill everyone else who worked in the prison, because they all knew what Rizz was doing and did nothing to stop him.
  • Kid and Soul pull this off after what happens to Maka in the Soul Eater fanfiction Scars and Stitches.


Films -- Live-Action

  • The Brave One - after being brutalized by a gang of thugs (who also kill her boyfriend and steal her dog), the protagonist gradually turns vigilante.
  • In Kill Bill, one of the "sidequests" is to murder the guy who raped her while she was in a coma. The main storyline (and the backstory of one of the antagonists) also have heavy overtones of Rape And Revenge.
  • As does the movie and manga that it draws inspiration from, Lady Snowblood. The title character's mother was raped by four men who murdered her family, and she took revenge upon the first one before being caught by the police and thrown in prison. Upon the title character's birth, her mother charged her with the task of completing her vengeance by killing her other three tormentors.
  • This is also the trigger event of the Joshuu Sasori series, another influence on Kill Bill. Matsu is seduced by a detective, who persuades her to go undercover in a nightclub run by Yakuza he's targeting. Then he engineers a tip-off, resulting in Matsu being captured and gang-raped, purely so he can then catch them in the act of raping her. She tried to kill him and fails, leading to her imprisonment; her desire for revenge is what keeps her going.
  • The Exploitation Film Thriller - A Cruel Picture (aka They Call Her One-Eye) is about a young woman who is abducted, given heroin until she develops an addiction, and is forced to prostitute herself to some rather rough clients. For some reason, her captors give her plenty of free time to herself, so she learns how to fire a gun, drive a car, and perform martial arts, allowing her to ultimately take revenge against her tormentors.
  • I Spit on Your Grave is built entirely on this trope and does it quite over the top.
    • Wes Craven's The Last House on the Left is often compared to I Spit on Your Grave, as it is thematically similar. Although in this case, two girls are raped and murdered, and it's the parents of one of the girls who take vengeance. The R Emake is slightly different.
      • Remarkably enough, Last House on the Left is an Americanized, contemporary version of Ingmar Bergman's The Virgin Spring (1960), which has the story in a medieval setting.
  • Ms. 45: "A shy and mute seamstress goes insane after being attacked and raped twice in one day, in which she takes to the streets of New York after dark and randomly kills men with a .45 caliber gun." - IMDB plot summary.
  • The Dirty Harry movie Sudden Impact has Harry investigating a series of murders by a woman out for revenge against her rapists.
  • In Gran Torino, the main character makes friends with a girl, who is later raped by gang members. He gets revenge on them by sending them to jail at the cost of his own life.
  • The French film Irreversible (2002): two friends of a girl called Alex brutally kill her rapist. But they don't.
  • The fantasy movie Red Sonja has this as the basic premise... With the added fantasy element of a female deity manifesting to heal the character after the violation, thus making her ready to become a hero.
    • While not being the main plotline in the same way, this is also an important part of the backstory for the comicbook character that the movie is built on.
  • The title character of Hannie Caulder, who trained under a retired gunslinger to get revenge on three vicious outlaws who murdered her husband, one of whom raped her. After almost getting killed in taking down the first bandit due to hesitation, when she finds the second bandit, the one who raped her, she lays into him with utter rage, blasting him straight to hell.
  • How about The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo? Lisbeth Salander takes a brutal retribution against her rapist.
  • Another Exploitation Film, Axe, also features this trope as a central theme.
  • Examples with male victims are Vulgar and Troma's Father's Day.
  • In Descent, the main character Maya is raped at the beginning of the movie. This act was done by someone who was initially a nice guy and potential love interest. Cue the inevitable downfall of everything that was right in her world. That is, UNTIL she invites her rapist back over to her place. He thinks he's coming for a good time, but she has other plans in mind: having him tied to a bed and raped by another man while she watches with utter hatred in her eyes.
  • In Braveheart, the husband of a woman raped by an English nobleman exercising Droit Du Seigneur near the beginning of the film gets his chance at payback when the Scottish rebels take over the rapist's garrison. Not being, apparently, the overly subtle type, he unceremoniously smashes the guy's head in with a mace, and that's the last we hear about it.
  • In Lajja, Bulwa avenges Ramdulaari's rape, as well as the Attempted Rape on his mother by killing male followers of Sleazy Politician Gajendra.
  • It's not part of the main plot, but in Pulp Fiction, Marcellus Wallace promises full payback to the man who raped him:

 "What now? Let me tell you what now. I'ma call a coupla hard, pipe-hittin' n*ggers, who'll go to work on homes here with a pair of pliers and a blow torch. You hear me talkin', hillbilly boy? I ain't through with you by a damn sight. I'ma get medieval on your ass."

  • A female on female example of this is Five Across the Eyes, where a psychotic woman tortures five teenage girls through means that include sexually humiliating them, and violating them with objects like a screwdriver and a shotgun. They avenge themselves by stabbing her to death with a screwdriver and then setting her on fire.
  • In Bad Reputation, a Shrinking Violet is gang raped by Jerk Jocks at a party, then humiliated and labeled the "school slut" by a Girl Posse. After her mother and the school guidance counselor prove unsympathetic (to the point of basically blaming her) she completely snaps, and decides to get even as a Femme Fatale.
  • This is a major theme in the 1987 Australian film Shame.
  • Sucker Punch: Baby Doll was raped by her step father before she seeks revenge on all the Big Bad males, who are implied to have raped at least some of the ladies in the asylum.


Literature

  • In Tess of the D'Ubervilles, Tess murders Alec, who deflowers her when she was young and later forces her to become his mistress to save her family from financial ruin. Now it's ambiguous how consensual (if there was any consent involved) their first "sexual" act was, but it was clear that Tess had a vague understanding of sex and even rejected his initial advances. It's implied out of despair she becomes his mistress soon after the rape (because Victorian standards would stipulate she belongs to him) until she finds the courage to leave him. Then, Tess later becomes Alec's mistress a second time to save her family, then she fiercely murders him, not just to be with the husband who abandons her, but because Alec clearly wronged her.
  • In Dirty Weekend, the protagonist Bella is a shy little woman who have been stalked by a predator for a while and finally snaps. Her "revenge" is of the slippery slope kind, eventually including a man who merely politely flirted with her.
  • In the third book of the Twilight series Eclipse it's implied that this trope happened to Rosalie. It's not outright stated that she was raped, but at the very least she was severely beaten... and later she personally killed the guys who did it, which included her fiance. .
  • In the first book of The Millennium Trilogy, one of the main plotlines is the female protagonist getting revenge on a man who had raped her. This remains one of the underlying themes in the whole trilogy, as it turns out that she had been abused during her childhood as well.
  • In the book of Genesis, Dinah's brothers kill Shechem (and all the men in his village) after he "lay with her by force," or "subdued her," or "violated her." Their father was not impressed.
    • Another Biblical example: In the Book of Judges, this is essentially the cause of a war. A Levite man's concubine was literally raped to death after he gave her over to a bunch of men to protect his own ass. When he finds her dead in the morning, he calls his buddies to war with the people of Gibeah.
    • Yet another one: Absalom avenging the rape of his sister by his half-brother Amnon.
  • Mercedes Lackey's Vows & Honor stories has Tarma becoming SwordSworn to go after the bandits who murdered her entire clan, gang-raped her, and left her for dead.
  • In David Eddings' Regina's Song, One girl of a pair of identical twins is raped and murdered, inspiring the other to hunt down and messily murder sexual predators in her search for the man responsible.
  • In Strands Of Starlight, protagonist Miriam is raped by a man whom she has just saved from the brink of death. The entire plot revolves around Miriam's thirst for vengeance and the lengths she is willing to go to in order to get it, including being transformed into an Elf, learning swordsmanship and eventually letting her rapist live after using magic to change his personality completely .
  • In Medalon, Jennifer Fallon's first book in the Demon Child trilogy, the female protagonist is repeatedly raped and forced to keep quiet about it for the sake of the man she cares about. Then of course, her rapist decides to threaten him instead. Really. Bad. Move. Two books later, she properly gets revenge for what he did to her. By that time she's a Physical God who became a Magnificent Bastard by taking down an entire religion, rearranging the political landscape of an entire continent, took another god to the cleaners, and still had time afterwards to set up an entirely new form of governance for her home country. Let's just say that the words Fate Worse Than Death have seldom been more suitably applied by the time she's done with him.
  • In Rudyard Kipling's Epitaphs of the War: 1914-1918 this chilling epitaph is written:

 RAPED AND REVENGED

One used and butchered me: another spied

Me broken — for which thing an hundred died.

So it was learned among the heathen hosts

How much a freeborn woman’s favour costs.

  • The climax of Is-A-Man by J. T. Edson has Annie Singing Bear taking revenge on four Mexicans who raped a member of her tribe. She kills three of them and the fourth, who shows cowardice rather than fighting her honourably, she castrates.


Live-Action TV

  • Law and Order Special Victims Unit feature several cases, and have one episode entirely dedicated to a previous case - the previous victim is back, and now she's stalking her abuser.
  • Veronica Mars tries to avenge her own rape in season one and eventually sort of succeeds at the end of two. In season three she spends a good ten episodes trying to avenge Parker's rape.
  • Ziva of NCIS was once asked what she would do if she had been raped. Being Ziva, she cheerfully and calmly replied that she'd torture her rapist until he cried like a baby and then she'd castrate him.
  • One unsub in Criminal Minds snapped after seeing her rapists walk free and started committing murders.
  • "Revenge", one episode of Alfred Hitchcock Presents, done in both the original and the '80s reboot, had this as its setup. After a wife is raped, she identifes a man walking down the street as her rapist to her husband, who then goes out and kills him. Only moments later he realizes he ended up killing an innocent man.
  • The plot of season 5 of Dexter centers around Lumen enlisting Dexter to help off the people who raped and tortured her.
  • The very title of an episode of Hunter, which has McCall being raped and Hunter being shot (after he beats up the guy) by a foreign diplomat who is protected by immunity. An incensed Hunter follows the man back to his country, kills him and escapes.
  • Renee Walker of 24 stabs her rapist 15 times with a table knife.
  • The Judge, a 30-minute syndicated courtroom drama that aired in the late 1980s, had a case where the litigants -- three college-aged students, a man and two women -- were involved in a cycle of rape and revenge; all three claimed "he/she raped me over and over again." In the end, Judge Franklin (the show's main protagonist) was appalled and scolded them all ... and was so disgusted that he refused to end the proceeding with his standard "be good to each other" tagline.


Music


Tabletop Games

  • The Dungeons and Dragons setting Scarred Lands takes this trope to cosmological levels when the goddess Tanil is raped by her own father, one of the titans. Who then proceeds to stalk his daughter-granddaughter Idra. This incident is one of the reasons why the gods decide to end the reign of the titans once and for all. Tanil gets to kill her dad, but the whole ordeal gives her a permanent depression and transforms her daughter from a Chaotic Good Ethical Slut to a Chaotic Neutral with heavy overtones of being cold and calculating. The fact that the Love Goddess has ceased to be Good is one of the many traits that define this post-apocalypse fantasy setting as a Crapsack World.


Theatre


Videogames

  • The player character in A Dance With Rogues can decide how she wants to react to being raped, from Rape Is Love all the way through all three stages of this trope.
  • This is Ran's backstory in the Japanese video game Criminal Girls.
  • In Sengoku Rance, Rance completely flips his shit and pulls the trope absolutely straight when he finds out that Kouhime aka one of the girls he's the most fond of has been gangraped.
  • In Persona 5, the soon-to-be Founding Members of the Phantom Thieves of Heart already were very angry at Sadist Teacher Kamoshida, but one of their biggest reasons to actually get together and target him is his rape of Ann Takamaki's best friend Shiho Suzui (as "revenge" for Ann not wanting to sleep with him), which led the poor girl to attempt suicide.


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