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Basic Trope: The villain keeps a pool filled with dangerous predators which he uses to dispose of unwanted heroes.

  • Straight: The foul Dr. Nefarious has our heroes suspended over a pool filled with hungry sharks.
  • Exaggerated: Dr. Nefarious's pool is full of robotic sharks with steel teeth and frickin' laser beams on their heads. And it contains acid instead of water.
  • Justified: Sharks are pretty good at disposing of bodies without leaving evidence.
    • Dr. Nefarious is a marine biologist; he always has sharks at hand in his sinister lair because they're used in his evil experiments to grant his minions Lorenzini ampullae implants. Their usage as a Death Trap is just a bonus.
    • "Dr. Nefarious" is the self-given nickname of Bob Commonman, an aquarium employee and Serial Killer with a shark fetish.
  • Inverted: Dr. Nefarious gets kicked into the shark pool at the local aquarium while one of his EvilPlans is being thwarted.
    • Alternatively, a shark is dumped into a pit of ravenous heroes.
  • Subverted: The heroes are dropped into a pool with only a few crusty old shark skeletons (!?)inside. Looks like the evil mastermind isn't a very good pet owner.
  • Double Subverted: ...Then it turns out the sharks were just food for the Giant Squid lurking in the pool.
  • Parodied: The heroes are called in to stop Dr. Nefarious from stealing great white sharks from Sea World for use in his impractical death traps.
    • Bonus points if the hero actually points out that Great Whites would be terrible Shark Pool material because they seldom last beyond a week in captivity.
  • Deconstructed: The upkeep of keeping the sharks in good health and hungry for unwanted heroes when necessary costs Dr. Nefarious ridiculous amounts of time and money.
    • As Dr. Nefarious uncovers the shark pool to the heroes, he discovers that the sharks are floating belly-up due to unproper living conditions. With his only execution device gone, the heroes escape.
  • Reconstructed: Dr. Nefarious makes a point of pride out of how expensive it is to maintain the shark tank. Additionally, the way his plan's going he'll be dead or the ruler of most of the world in months, so money's not really an issue.
    • Dr. Nefarious makes sure to study the shark's needs and provides them with everything they need so they live long and healthy.
  • Zig Zagged: Dr. Nefarious uncovers the pool of sharks, only to find them dead. But wait! It turns out that these sharks were just a test run for the real part of the trap: an Orca whale. Said Orca, however, turns out to be peaceful, much to the dismay of Dr. Nefarious. So Dr. Nefarious releases the giant squid! Oops, looks like the Orca killed it for food. But hold on! Said Orca turns out to actually be an aquatic demon in disguise, whose peacefulness was just a ruse to lure everyone into a false sense of security! It suddenly decides to kill Dr. Nefarious for yet unknown reasons. The heroes, tired of all these shenanigans, climb out of the trap and leave.
  • Averted: Dr. Nefarious decides to just shoot the heroes rather than subscribe to the tacky Death Trap cliche.
  • Enforced: Everything Is Even Worse With Sharks. Thus, a good way to clearly show that our heroes are royally screwed is to dip them in a shark pool.
  • Lampshaded: "Oh, great. The old 'lower-your-enemies-into-a-pool-full-of-sharks' trick. You DO realize that whale sharks don't eat people?"
  • Invoked: Dr. Nefarious orders some sharks to be captured, trained and placed in a pool with the sole purpose of killing his enemies.
  • Exploited: ???
  • Defied: "Feed you to the sharks? What do you think I am, some sort of Bond villain!?"
  • Discussed: "I don't know why I took this job, the boss spends more on his fancy shark tanks than in our sallary"
  • Conversed: Oh my, a shark tank, There is no way our heroes are gonna make it out of this one alive.
  • Played For Laughs:: The heroes are lowered into the pool only to find out that the things swiming bellow aren't sharks...they are ravenous goldfish
  • Played For Drama: One of the hero's loved one is slowly being lowered into the pool as Dr. Nefarious taunts them into coming for his rescue. The heroes arrive and disable the impractical trap, only to find out they have been baited into an ambush. When The Lancer chews out The Hero for falling for it, Dr.Nafarious states that if they didn't he'd have The Hero all to himself. He would win either way.

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