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"This s... sucks!"
Fatso (being sucked into a vacuum cleaner) in Casper

Sometimes, in a work of fiction, the good guys will use Frickin' Laser Beams to defeat the bad guys or the monster. Usually, said laser beams work like some science-fictiony approximation of a bullet. Occasionally, though, the beam will do something totally different: suck the target into the weapon. Most of the time, this doesn't kill or otherwise destroy the target, it just traps them, to (presumably) be disposed of later. A lot of the time, when some supernatural menace won't go down under Frickin Laser Beam fire, you need a Frickin Vacuum Cleaner to get the job done!

For when a character uses themselves as the vacuum, see Vacuum Mouth.

Not to be confused with Tractor Beam.

Not to be confused with weapons that suck.

Examples of Weapons That Suck include:


Anime and Manga

  • A jar-o-demon-sucking showed up in Mahou Sensei Negima during the Demon Arc.
  • One Monster of the Week in Futari wa Pretty Cure was a vacuum cleaner possessed by a Zakenna.
  • Miroku from Inuyasha, cursed with a black hole in his hand.
  • Shizuku uses an actual vacuum cleaner as a weapon, albeit infused with her Battle Aura. She calls it "Deme-chan" ("Blinky" in the translated manga).
    • Actually, it's not an actual vacuum cleaner: she creates it with her nen. It has teeth and barks.
  • Team Rocket uses vacuums now and again in the Pokémon anime.
    • The Poké Balls can also be considered as this trope.
  • In one episode the Ranma ½ anime, Soun Tendo intends to use a magical gourd to swallow up and imprison Ranma's shadow, which has come to life and has started making trouble (long story). The problem is, it only works if he can call out the Shadow Ranma's name... and he doesn't know it. This is a reference to the Journey to the West example below. In a different story, Ranma uses a magical box to catch an oni that's currently possessing the body of Happosai, sucking both of them into it.
    • In the manga, there exists a magical compact mirror that can suck in anyone who looks at their own reflection (and a fair bit of the accompanying landscape.) The victim is sealed up in a non-infinite mirror world, with no escape, unless someone outside pats the back of the compact and effectively slaps the victim out of it.
  • The Mafuuba technique in Dragon Ball is kind of like this. It doesn't work unless you have some kind of object (in this case, a rice cooker) to trap your target in, though it's not the object itself that actually sucks them in.
  • Vampire Hunter D has a symbiotic life-form living in his left hand which can--among other things--consume and inhale various substances.
  • Chikuma Koshirou from Basilisk has the Kamaitachi technique which sucks people and weapons into nothingness.

Comic Books

  • This was first method Spider-Man used to defeat the Sandman, by sucking him into a industrial vacuum cleaner.
  • Adam Strange in his original stories had one enemy alien race that used this form of sucking weapon.
  • Transmetropolitan features someone trying to sell Channon the "Chupacabras", a gun that can drain a target of blood in 4 seconds. Channon comments that 4 seconds to kill someone is far too long, and that there's no way she's going to carry a "Goatsucker"
  • One episode of Lobster Random had one that sucked out people's brains in order to make a drug that sent people on massive ego trips and sent the minds to another dimension for use in Warathraal's army. When Lob asks "It sucks?", Ms Teak simply states, "No, it's rather effective."

Film

  • In Ghostbusters, the guys use their proton beams not to actually blast the ghost, but to position it over the ghost trap and suck it in. For some reason, parodies of Ghostbusters always have the proton beams as the thing that sucks the ghost, with no mention of the trap.
  • Disney's Aladdin, Aladdin defeats Jafar by tricking him into wishing he were a genie. Jafar is promptly sucked into his new lamp in a Frickin Vacuum Cleaner effect, because genies must be released by new masters.
  • The titular board game in Jumanji uses strange magic to this effect. First, it sucks in Alan Parrish into its fictional jungle, then it releases a series of creatures, villains, and strange meteorology into the real world. In the end, everything is sucked back in one huge vaccum cleaner-like effect.
  • In Spaceballs, the bad guys' gigantic space ship transforms into Mega Maid, a Humongous Mecha that can suck up an entire planet's air supply.
  • Similar to the Jumanji example, the end of Cool World features cartoonist Jack Deebs, transmogrified into a cartoon superhero, returning the Spike of Power to the roof of the Las Vegas Plaza Hotel, thus curing everyone in the city who had been turned into cartoon characters, and sucking all the denizens of the Cool World back where they belong with a vacuum cleaner-like effect. (It Makes Sense in Context, but you gotta watch it)
  • Gargamel in The Smurfs used a leaf blower for capturing Smurfs while chasing after them in FAO Schwarz.


Literature

  • In the Thursday Next series, Spike captures a Supreme Evil Being using a specially designed vacuum cleaner, to the demon's surprise.
  • Weapons That Suck have a role in China Mieville's Un Lun Dun Specifically, the UnGun, which sucks up the Smog at the climax of the novel.
  • The eponymous heroine of C. J. Cherryh's Morgaine series wields a sword that kills people by sucking them into it.
  • Older Than Steam: There are quite a few examples of Magical Artifacts That Suck in the Chinese epic Journey to the West, including magical gourds and jade vases that suck people in and slowly digest them with the container's equivalent of stomach acids.


Live Action TV

  • The Vacuum Bot in Power Rangers RPM, capable sucking all the oxygen out of Corinth and sucking in the attacks and weapons of the Zords during battle.
  • In the first episode of Reaper, Sam is given a demonic dirt devil vacuum in order to recapture a soul that escaped Hell.
  • In The Mighty Boosh the evil spirit of Jazz is subuded by being sucked into a vacuum cleaner. Sadly this doesn't stop the spirit as he just rolls the cleaner to Howard and "Get's inside him."
  • This happened in Monkey - the baddies had a magic bottle which would suck you inside if they pointed it at you, they said your name, and you answered to it. Monkey escapes it by turning into a wasp and later tricks the baddies by posing as someone else and giving a false name.
  • In Doctor Who, the Daleks' multi-purpose "plunger arm" has this as one of its functions.


Tabletop Games

  • From Monsterpocalypse the Oppressor unit from the Subterrans has huge vacuum cleaners bionically grafted onto its arms.
  • Dungeons and Dragons had a magic item called an Iron Flask. It could suck a targeted creature into itself and store it indefinitely.


Video Games

  • The Poltergust 3000 in Luigi's Mansion.
  • The Suck Cannon from Ratchet and Clank sucks in enemies or crates and lets you use them as ammunition.
  • The Persephones in Castlevania use vacuum cleaners with skull-shaped canisters. For fun, let one of them catch Charlotte in Portrait of Ruin...
    • Also just as fun with Student Witches and Persephones themselves when you get to use one in Aria/Dawn of Sorrow.
  • Link's Gust Jar in The Legend of Zelda the Minish Cap.
  • One of SonSon's abilities in Marvel vs. Capcom 2 is to suck an opponent into a vase....thing she's carrying, then cook it. Given SonSon's origins, this is likely a reference to the vase from Journey to the West above, possibly combined with Laozi's eight-way trigem cauldron, given the "cooking" aspect.
  • In Shin Megami Tensei, the Red Baron (aka Maou Belial) is unbeatable unless you have "the gushing jar". Then it will just suck him up.
  • Mega Man\Rockman Trigger's Vacuum Arm in the Rockman Dash/Mega Man Legends series. Comes with three levels of suckitude, from "why don't you just walk up and grab the Zenny" to "Whoa, there was money behind me on the other side of the room?"
  • In Saga Frontier, characters of the mystic race get the Mystic Sword, Mystic Glove, and Mystic Boots. Dealing the finishing blow with any of these three weapons sucks the monster inside of them, allowing the character to gain boosted stats and a skill of the monster's.
  • A couple of pins in The World Ends With You will instantly kill any enemy that gets drawn into their area of effect (though you earn no experience and get no treasure for doing so).
  • Disgaea 3 Absence of Justice has an attack where you shoot the enemy with an energy ball, suck them into the gun, shake the gun around (doing damage in the process) and then shoot them back out. The attack is called 'Cocktail Shaker'. It's that kind of game.
  • Inverted in Fallout 3: the Rock-It Launcher is a vacuum cleaner designed to blow rather than suck, with enough projectile force to knock a body to bits.
  • Johnny Garland uses a vacuum in Shadow Hearts: From The New World. It does no damage, but it drains Stock from an enemy and gives it to him.
  • There are two weapons like this in Shadow the Hedgehog. Somehow, they have limited ammunition.
  • The Sims 3 expansion Ambitions adds new professions to the game, one of those being Ghost Hunter, and your main tool of a the trade is the Banshee Banisher which is used to suck up spirits or ghost Sims.
    • The Sims 2 has the SimVac aspiration reward, which sucks skill points and aspiration points out of another Sim, or if the Sim using it has a low aspiration meter it may backfire and transfer them to the target sim instead.
  • In the Breakout clone Shatter, your bumper and generate a vacuum which can draw in your balls for better control. It also sucks up bricks, which can cause damage to the bumper and deactivate it for a short time, so you have to be careful how much you use it.
  • In Donkey Kong Country 2, Kaptain K Rool's blunderbuss is an example (you have to throw cannonballs at it so they explode in the gun). It can also work the other way, firing various types of poison gas cloud, cannonballs, barrels, mines... and function as akin to rocket skates for K Rool to charge across the arena.
  • The various sweepers in Blinx the Time Sweeper and its sequel.
  • The old arcade game Tumblepop is all about this trope, featuring two guys armed with vacuum cleaners that suck enemies inside and then release them in a Giant Ball of People.
  • Rock Man 4 Minus Infinity has the Recycle Inhaler, which converts enemies into E-Tanks, Extra Lives or healing items after using it to suck them up.
  • The Nameless Mod has Vortex Grenades, which are a Too Awesome to Use item that one can go through an entire playthrough without finding one. When you throw it, it sucks everything in the area into the vortex (including you if you're not careful) and smashes all the enemies into each other, resulting in Ludicrous Gibs.
  • The Biotic power named "Singularity", specialty of the Adept class and Liara T'Soni in the Mass Effect series, creates a miniature black hole that sucks all unshielded enemies into its orbit and keeps them helplessly suspended in the air while you pick them off.
  • Mega Man 9 has the Black Hole Bomb, which, after it explodes, draws in and instantly destroys minor monsters, and damages significant monsters even outside its visible blast radius.
  • The forgotten Bubble Bobble-like platformer Super Methane Bros has the two brothers sucking their enemies inside their weapon, but to actually defeat them they had to blow them out and make them crash against the stage walls.
  • Kyuiin is an old Japanese PS1 Horizontal Scrolling Shooter recently released for the Play Station Network, wherein the players fly on a magic vacuum cleaner. The vacuum cleaner can shoot the usual beams, but also suck up enemies and bullets: this is not mandatory, but needed to power up the gauge of the Smart Bomb beam that destroys almost everything on screen.


Webcomics

  • The Eskimo in this Mountain Time episode uses his Cube of Doom to defeat the Vikings. It doesn't work.
  • Gayle and Kaz from Work Sucks use a pair of gunk-shooting guns in a friendly duel, but Gayle's (after some modifications) sucks Kaz into a vortex and traps him in a hammerspace ball here.
    • While not exactly a weapon, a printing machine, of all things, does this too.


Western Animation

  • Danny Phantom and the Fenton Thermos.
    • They also have a vacuum that does the same, but is rarely ever used.
  • The Monster Buster Club and their vacuuvators.
  • The Jackie Chan Adventures had the "Lost Urn of Wei Chun," a three-compartmented box, complete with ghost-trap sound effects homage, to trap the first Three Dark Warriors of Daolong Wong. But, when faced with the 2nd Three Dark Warriors, we get this exchange:

 Jackie: Uncle, we need another urn!

Uncle: There is only one Urn of Wei Chun... And it is already occupied!!!

  • The Smurfs in the cartoon show episode "Smurfing For Ghosts" use a Ghostbusters-type backpack weapon that acts like a vacuum cleaner for sucking up ghosts. Gargamel in "The Trojan Smurf" also had a weapon that acted like a vacuum cleaner for sucking up Smurfs.


Real Life

  • Need to go up against one of the scariest insects in the world, the suzumebachi or Japanese giant hornet, whose stings kill about 70 people a year? A vacuum cleaner is your best bet. (If you have balls of solid titanium, that is.)
  • Black holes, if you think about it a certain way.
    • Black holes do not work that way! Good night!
    • They'd work that way if they're inside an atmosphere, mainly because the gravity would pull air into the singularity, creating the mother of all pressure differentials. Of course, that's the least of your problems if it's a stellar-mass black hole...
  • Suction is a fairly popular method of capturing prey among aquatic organisms. Its primary advantage is that there's no need to actually come into contact with the prey before snaring it, just get within a certain distance of it. It also helps with multiple small prey items. An additional means of killing the prey is recommended for anything dangerous, as the mere act of "vacuuming" it up usually leaves the victim alive and quite agitated. While suctioned prey is often suffocated in the process of being swallowed, specimens of deepsea fish have been found killed by their struggling prey while in the process of trying to swallow them.
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