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"Yes! Oh, yeah! I did it! I finally did it! I beat my old rival Mario! Yessss!"

Bowser, Paper Mario

That's right. Somehow, the Goldfish Poop Gang won.

How did this happen? Why did this happen?

The shortest and simplest answer is that they got their act together-- really together—and are now a threat. As to "why", the Author wants to shake the heroes and viewers out of their comfort zone by allowing the bad guys to win round one so the heroes will be forced to get their act together and make their next encounter a truly epic fight. These third string villains undid the Villain Decay that put them at the bottom of the Sorting Algorithm of Villain Threat by going through Training from Hell, using some kind of Upgrade Artifact or Artifact of Doom, or are under the effects of a Villain Override. Another possibility is that they catch the heroes off guard. Maybe Team Harmless Villain was Not So Harmless all along, and have been pretending to be weak to lull the heroes into complacency (which warrants the question, why didn't they just kill them on the spot?)

If neither is the case, it may be that they have both traded places in the story—if the heroes do a Face Heel Turn and the bad guys make a Heel Face Turn due to a Mirror Morality Machine, they will "cosmically" get the power boost needed to make sure good comes out on top, they are the Invincible Heroes now.

Speaking of role reversals, if the Quirky Miniboss Squad joins the heroes in an Enemy Mine situation where they both fight for a good goal, they'll no longer be under the same "bad guys always lose" onus, and remind us why they were, Once Upon a Time, relevant as they bash the Eviler Than Thou new threat.

Likewise, new characters in the show may be introduced as Distressed Damsels being beaten by the Goldfish Poop Gang so that the heroes can come to their aid. It also serves to show us how pathetic they are and feel to lose to these guys. Afterwards, with some confidence boosting pep talks from the heroes and combat training, they will solo their temporary tormentors and make them A Twinkle in the Sky. Similarly, a Tournament Arc allows most Quirky Miniboss Squads the chance to win a few matches to remind us they don't completly suck, only to then go down to a bigger threat.

At any rate, you can expect a hero or one of the squad members to finish by asking "So... what now?

See also The Bad Guy Wins (which is an Ending Trope). Contrast Big Bad Wannabe, which may at times overlap.

Examples of Team Rocket Wins include:

Anime and Manga

  • Team Rocket, the Trope Namer from Pokémon, beat the crap out of Ash's Pokémon when they were allowed to run Viridian City's Gym using Giovanni's Pokémon, at least until Ash managed to regain momentum and beat them at their own game. There have been a few other instances where Team Rocket has been successful in battle, but it was because they were trying to do something good for a change. Their victories never lasted too long, and they were often sent flying at the end of the episode anyway.
    • Jessie (while under her Jessilina alias) has actually become competent enough to win Pokémon Contests all on her own without cheating (though she has considered it at times.) She lost out on winning her fifth ribbon needed to get into the Grand Festival, but Dawn (or rather, a Dawn lookalike by the name of Princess Salvia, long story) gave her the sixth ribbon she had just won. Jessie gratefully accepted it and made her way to the semi-finals against Dawn in the Grand Festival.
    • In Off the Unbeaten Path, James won a contest that involved teamwork with one's own Pokémon. He used Mime Jr. and was steadfast in playing by the rules despite Jessie's repeated attempts to encourage him to cheat. So this goes with the "Team Rocket can win if they act like good guys" rule.
      • Nearly happened when James turned out to be an expert at a sport that used flying Pokémon. Once again he refused to cheat, and he lost by only the tiniest margin.
    • Interestingly, repeated encounters with Ash and friends has been like Training from Hell to the team, giving them superhuman damage resistance, among other things. Meowth himself commented that a powerful electric cage was nothing compared to Pikachu's electric attacks. They also learn from their mistakes, though in the process usually make new ones. An example would be Charmander's debut episode all the way back at the very start of the original series; they use rubber coated equipment to nullify Pikachu's electric attacks, but didn't bring any fireproof equipment.
      • Heck, in some later episodes, Team Rocket actually does some heavy damage to other trainers. In general, Team Rocket manages to win when the plot requires it - Jessie fighting her way to the end of the Princess Festival tournament, Jessie and James defeating the Eevee Brothers, etc.
    • This occurs even in early episodes—in "The Punchy Pokémon", various trainers are participating in a Fighting-type only tournament. Though Ash beats them in the end, the trio very successfully steals a Hitmonlee and thrashes their competition with it through a combination of regular battling and standard cheating. This is pretty notable, since they beat a Hitmonchan raised by a trainer who LEFT HIS FAMILY to train it.
    • In The Thief That Keeps on Thieving! they actually managed to catch the wild Pokémon that the character of the day was after and send it to their boss. Of course, he sends it back to them and it promptly evolves, giving Jessie a new Yanmega.
      • Said Yanmega then proceeds to get as close as any Team Rocket Pokémon has to blasting off Ash & co.
    • They seem fairly competent whenever they are not dealing with Ash and co. - remember that they had wanted posters with their first appearance? - and many of their plans worked... until Ash got involved.
      • Actually, it's more than that. According to Pokémon Chronicles, Jessie and James weren't just competent, they were THE BEST operatives in Team Rocket history! In fact, in their first appearance they managed to not only steal ALL the Pokémon in the center (owned by full fledged trainers) and wreck the place, BUT would have gotten away scot-free if not for Ash using a team of Pikachu to supercharge his own! Then... they stopped doing real evil in favor of following Ash around and trying to steal some noob's yellow rat.
    • In the Best Wishes! series, they got new uniforms because of a PROMOTION.
      • Even wilder, they became competent and so far have stayed that way. They almost capture Pikachu and Iris's Axew. Key and operative word: almost. We're 40 episodes in and they've yet to blast off once (the blasting off role was taken by a Sandile who appeared in a couple of episodes). They generally stay away from Ash and company, however, because of their new mission.
      • It's possible they'll be competent all through the Best Wishes! series, because they're supposed to be the spark for Team Plasma's appearance.
      • So far this season, Giovanni has given them one mission. The goal of said mission was to collect dream energy from an abandoned research facility in order to help with Team Rocket's plans to conquer the world. While they failed to capture the Pokémon of the day, the episode where they put this plan into action basically ended with Giovanni congratulating them on succeeding and telling them that he had people looking at the energy to see what they can do with it. That's right, Team Rocket just successfully completed the first step in a plan for world domination.
      • And now they've managed to break into a top-secret research facility and steal data on a meteorite that gives off some kind of ultra-powerful energy that can be used for World Domination.
  • In School Rumble, Tennouji beats Harima once when the latter was in despair after finding out Tenma liked Karasuma.
  • A borderline example. In Otasukeman, one of the series from the Time Bokan meta-series, at the end of every episode the chief of the Time Patrol asked the two main groups of the Patrol to pick a choice between two special kinds of training. One group (who really were the heroes of the series, the titular Otasukeman, and always won the battles) always picked the pleasant, relaxing activity, when the other one (who really were the Terrible Trio, the "evil" Ojamaman, and always lost against the Otasukeman) always picked the nasty, gruesome Training from Hell. In one episode, however, the Terrible Trio chose wisely and won a nice boat trip over a calm river, while the heroes found themselves in a Japanese cemetery filled with angry ghosts.
  • Sonic X had this happen once, but not when facing Sonic. Usually Eggman's schemes fail miserably, and his machines and robots are useless, but then he goes up against some Metarex that are attempting to hurt Sonic. Without warning, Boko and Deko, his worst robots, become super strong and beat everyone down, and Bokkun delivers a powerful uppercut kick, clearing a pathway for them all.
  • At the end of the first arc of Digimon Xros Wars, Bagramon easily takes all the Code Crowns and reconfigures the Digital World. Taiki, Akari, Zenjirou, and Shoutmon are blown back to Earth. While they're gone, Kiriha and Nene are forced into hiding, Xros Heart is captured, and the Digital World comes under worse oppression than before.
  • Florsheim once brought a werewolf to do battle against Astro Fighter Sunred... On an overcast night. After spending several hours waiting for the beast to transform, Sunred got enough and went home. Vamp wonders if they can call this a 'win' until one of his combat goons tells him they probably can't.

Comic Books

  • Anytime The Shocker does anything right, it counts as this. But what stands out in particular was his appearance in the Ultimate Spider-Man book, where after countless, effortless losses to Spidey (who slammed the point home by cracking jokes), he managed to knock him unconscious. He then tied him up with chains, ranting and torturing him, and likely would have killed him if not for Kitty Pride and the NYPD finding his location.
    • To be fair, 616-universe Shocker is more competent than Ultimate Shocker.
  • In The Powerpuff Girls story "Smart And Smarter" (Cartoon Network Block Party #59), Mojo Jojo outwits Blossom, with her sisters' blessings! Blossom (who let her ego swell after being admitted to a special school) blows her ice breath which Mojo counters with a heat shield. The trail of melted ice reaches Blossom's foot (which she doesn't see) and she emits static electricity from her hands which in turn fries her to a frazzle. The ending panel has Buttercup shaking hands with Mojo.

Fan Works

  • Magical Troubleshoting Fighting Federation, a tournament with a crossover cast of various anime series, actually has Team Rocket win at least once, much to their own shock.
    • Hell, after a while they were the most popular team in the organization! And did a Heel Face Turn because of it! And became one of the most successful teams in the crossover!
      • It's a series inspired by pro wrestling, of course the team with the most showmanship is going to win!
  • The second season's arc of La Serie de Ken is kicked precisely because of this, Team Rocket manages to steal all but one of Ken's Pokémon and he has to start anew with a new set to try to recover them, it also marks the start of the villains as Not So Harmless and the series' Cerebus Syndrome.
  • A Powerpuff Girls picture strip story, "Diet With Honor," had Mojo Jojo making good on a threat to give Blossom "the spanking you so richly deserve."


  • In The Great Race, the main character Leslie stops just short of the finish line and lets the Harmless Villain team win to show The Chick that he loves her enough to give up the race. Professor Fate becomes livid about this, and challenges Leslie to another race.
    • A similar plot point happens in Cars when Lightning brakes hard at the finish line, reverses, and pushes "The King" across. This time, however, when Hicks wins, he's the only one celebrating and is shocked when everyone starts booing him.
      • Since he cheated by (intentionally?) wrecking "The King" in the first place, he had no business being shocked.
  • Megamind's plot starts rolling because of this, which is lampshaded by both Megamind's sidekick early on and Metro Man much later.

Live Action TV

  • Presuming that the condition for villain victory is "kill the slayer", Buffy the Vampire Slayer has numerous examples: Spike legitimately out-fights and kills two Slayers, Drusilla effortlessly takes out Kendra the Vampire Slayer, The Master kills Buffy on two occasions (one time she is revived and the other in an alternate universe), and a random vampire nearly kills Buffy in "Fool for Love", and it's Riley that ultimately puts him down.
    • If you count characters who nearly pull off kills until somebody saves them at the last second, then that opens up a much larger group, including the Gentlemen, Warren, Dark Willow, and Caleb.
  • In Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Zedd and Rita would pull this off at least once a season. This usually involved the zords being destroyed and re-formed, and as such, usually happened when they had run out of Sentai footage and/or just in time for an action-figure shopping season.
    • Topped by the series finale of Mighty Morphin, as the two actually do succeed in not only leaving the Rangers powerless, but also destroying the Command Center. Damn.
  • Power Rangers in Space have an all out attack on the galaxy with the Space Rangers and thier allies all losing. They only survive because of Zordon's Heroic Sacrifice.

Video Games

  • Losing to Mid-Boss in Disgaea gives you a "secret ending".
    • As does losing to Axel in Disgaea 2.
    • And Raspberyl in Disgaea 3
    • Happens yet again with Axel in Disgaea 4. And when he wins this time, he really wins.
  • In Final Fantasy VI, Kefka's triumph in Thamasa is a complete surprise to the player. After all, almost every other encounter has consisted of Kefka casting a weak spell and then running away, and when Kefka seems to finally be serious in Narshe, he is still quite beatable. So when he appears in Thamasa, destroying Espers left and right, there is really no precedent.
  • Touhou Project has this in the handful of games that you can actually play as Cirno. Or, you know, if you lose to Cirno in the regular games. Cirno's plotlines generally have nothing to do with anything actually going on, and involve her just trying to prove she's "the strongest".
  • In the Dreamcast and PlayStation 2 Wacky Races game, the final unlock is the ability to play as Dick Dastardly. It's worth going through all the trouble to do so just to win a race as him and hear the announcer's bewildered or disgusted reaction.
  • Team Skull from Pokémon Mystery Dungeon Explorers of Time/Darkness/Sky was introduced as an easy first boss. In a later mission where your team is sent out to get Perfect Apples however, Team Skull brings their leader along to defeat your team, and then they take the apples you were supposed to find.
  • In the first Paper Mario Bowser once again starts the game's story by invading Princess Peach's castle. Peach sends Mario on him, predicting the usual result. Then Bowser pulls out the newly stolen Star Rod, boosting his strength, cue a Hopeless Boss Fight where your only choice is to let Bowser chalk up his first canonical victory against the plumber. Peach and even Bowser himself are completely astonished.
  • In a similar manner, Dr. Eggman starts off the events of Sonic Unleashed by depowering Sonic in his super form and using his power to activate a laser to create an Earthshattering Kaboom. Keep in mind no other villain (bar Knuckles technically) has actually defeated Super Sonic.
    • Playing E-102 Gamma's story in Sonic Adventure allows you to battle and win against Sonic in a brief mini boss. Amy stops him just short of finishing the job however.

Web Comics

  • The page picture comes from Plague's Misadventures, one of the hosted comics in Bob and George. Sigma, who in this series is pretty much a nuisance Harmless Villain, actually succeeds in bringing down the space colony and bringing about the end of the world when the heroes shoot it down with the giant canon.
  • The Dimension of Pain demons from Sluggy Freelance, from their inception, had been largely Harmless Villains. When Torg wound up in their dimension, he easily withstood their attempts at torture, outwitted them, and escaped. After that they repeatedly tried to recapture him every year, but they could only send one demon at a time, only on Halloween night, and it could only stay until sunrise, and they inevitably failed in humiliating ways, to the point where Torg threw Halloween parties with the demons advertised as the main attraction. Throw in their wacky antics during the "Meanwhile In The Dimension of Pain ..." strips, and no one really took them seriously. Then "That Which Redeems" came along, and with the demons finding a way to bypass their previous limitations, suddenly they're conquering entire countries, butchering helpless bystanders, and outnumbering Torg 1000 to 1. Not to mention killing off Alt-Zoe.

Western Animation

  • Batman: The Animated Series. Mad Love has Harley Quinn manage to use one of the Joker's plots to capture Batman and have him dead to rights. This being Harley Quinn, Batman manages to play on her insecurities and call Joker. That goes down as well as you'd expect.
  • One episode of the Powerpuff Girls had Mojo Jojo, Princess, Fuzzy and Him team up into an ultra successful band, the "Beat All's", which the Girls were powerless to beat conventionally. Enter Moko Jono. True, Him is hardly a Harmless Villain, but Fuzzy, Princess and Mojo (at times) are pretty low on the threat scale.
    • In another episode, Mojo aqcuired the Girls' abilities and defeated them, only to launch into a navel-gazing session so severe that he didn't notice the Girls recover and turn him back to normal.
    • One episode even had The Amoeba Boys on the verge of victory, tricking the Girls into a trap they stole from Mojo Jojo (until Mojo himself stopped the trap).
    • In another episode, Him challenged the girls to solve a series of riddles on time to find Professor Utonium or the professor would have to "pay". They found the Professor a few seconds too late and Professor Utonium had to pay... the diner bill. It was just a diner bill but, the villain won and the narrator didn't have anything to say when he'd usually say the day had been saved.
      • It turns out to be a tainted victory however when Professor Utonium vows to never come to his diner again.
    • The Grand Finale, See Me, Feel Me, Gnomey began with the city beseiged by the girls' entire Rogues Gallery, and the girls getting their butts kicked to set up the main plot.
  • The Kanker Sisters in Ed, Edd 'n' Eddy always seize the day away from the Eds.
    • "A Glass Of Warm Ed" and "Dim Lit Ed" however end with the Eds successfully making a profit out of one of their scams. The "Big Picture Show" finale also ends with the Eds finally becoming popular.
  • In SpongeBob SquarePants, they did this once. The "superheroes" lost control of their powers and were badly injured, and Mermaid Man was too weak to fight. However, Barnacle Boy (who just had a Face Heel Turn and called himself "Barnacle Man") decides to simply go back to being good, just because he can now have an adult-sized Krabby Patty. The other villians are later seen in jail, participating in the "Everybody Laughs" Ending.
    • The Movie has Plankton actually succeed in stealing the Krabby Patty formula (though, natch, he doesn't read it to us).
    • In "Wishing You Well" he also gets his wish of growing to several hundred feet to "crush his enemies". His appearance ends with him happily knocking down random buildings in Bikini Bottom.
  • Designated villains The Really Rottens actually won in at two episodes of the Laff-A-Lympics. Usually most of their points were ruled invalid by the judges, but yep, a couple of times, the rotten bastards won.
    • An issue of the Laff-A-Lympics comic book (Marvel #5) had the Rottens apparently renouncing their cheating ways and winding up winning. However, they were disqualified because The Great Fondoo and Magic Rabbit, who were "kicked off" the team, kidnapped Boo Boo Bear and Blue Falcon, took their physical forms through Fondoo's magic, and caused the Yogis and Scoobys to lose on purpose.
  • On a similar subject, one episode of Wacky Races actually ends with Dick Dastardly placing in first. But unlike the Really Rottens' example, he doesn't get to keep his victory, because the announcer then shows a slow-motion replay of the race's finish that shows that the Mean Machine stretched its front forward to give the illusion that he came in first (despite the fact that if you look at the actual finish, you don't see such a thing happening). Watch the clip here.
  • Dastardly actually won two races outright in the comic books: "The Scavenger Scramble" (Gold Key #7) and "Trek To Tazmania" (Archie Comics #1). There were catches to the victories, however. Hanna-Barbera Fun-In (Gold Key #5) had a one-pager of Dastardly pushing the Mean Machine across the finish line after Muttley bails on him, and he uses the trophy, filled with hot water, to soak his feet.
  • In an episode of Xiaolin Showdown in which Omi freezes himself so he can find his future self (doesn't work of course because he wasn't there) he ends up in a Bad Future where Jack Spicer has taken over the world. The crazy part is that he apparently defeated and captured the other three villains, despite them being far more evil and powerful.
    • On a lighter note, he also won in two episodes, one where the robot he sent lost the showdown, but he stole all the monk's Sheng Gong Wu (in the "shake the heroes out of their comfort zone" model), and another where Omi actually loses due to misusing a shen gong wu, and the episode has a downer ending. Despite being an Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain, hes had several Near Villain Victories as well.
  • One Looney Tunes short (the made-for-TV short "Soup Or Sonic") has Wile E. Coyote catching the Roadrunner. Of course, the coyote has shrunk down to a comically puny size so the Roadrunner is much bigger than him. Wile E. lampshades this by pointing out to the audience that he has absolutely no clue what to do next.

Wile E. Coyote: (Holds up a sign) Okay, wise guys, you always wanted me to catch him. Now what do I do?

    • Also, in Cartoon Network's I Shouldn't Be Alive short on the Coyote, after spending almost a whole year attempting to attack and capture the Road Runner, he finally has him within his grasp (he simply laid out some bird seed and leapt at him while he was eating), only to discover that his finger muscles were too weak to do anything to him.
    • A bumper on The Road Runner Show (CBS, 1966–68; ABC, 1971–72) had the coyote diverting the Road Runner's attention by drawing a portrait of the two, the coyote in the drawing with a rifle in hand. The coyote grabs the Road Runner's neck only to have the coyote drawing blast him in the ass with the rifle.
    • Also Elmer Fudd defeated Bugs at his own game in Rabbit Rampage (a semi remake of Duck Amuck) as well as in Hare Brush (albeit due to something of a personality exchange, with an insane Elmer "turning" into Bugs). He also finally "killed da wabbit" in What's Opera Doc (though didn't really find victory all that satisfying).
    • In the original nine-minute long version of Duck Dodgers and The Return of the 24th and a Half Century Marvin the Martian seemingly achieves his goal of detonating the earth. With Dodgers distracted from his duties and earth's destruction almost certain, Marvin is left with no choice but to ensure the viewers "it's only a cartoon". Oddly this was cut from the shortened theatrical version of the short, though since it ends with Dodgers still having not stopped Marvin, the implication is still there.
    • Even following his Flanderization into a Butt Monkey, Daffy seemed to score more victories than most other fall-guys in the series, knocking out Taz in a Curb Stomp Battle in Ducking The Devil, being the first foe to defeat Speedy Gonzales in Mucho Locos to name a few. Counting an obscure Tang endorsement from The Bugs Bunny Show and Cartoon Network's Big Game from 2001, he has also defeated Bugs twice as well. Also, perhaps due to being created by fans of the shorts and the character, some later features tend to throw Daffy a bone a few times as well.
  • Almost happens in Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog. When the normally incompetent Scratch and Grounder are converted into ninja robots, they almost manage to kill Sonic and Tails, if it wasn't for Sonic and Tails escaping via sheer luck.
  • The Super Mario World episode has Bowser actually make off with the money he made selling his mutant food to the cavepeople (or at least two bags of it), with Mario and Peach making no effort to stop him (not that they ever tried before, though). Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that his restaurant actually was a legal business, even though he was using it to turn the cavepeople into his Mooks.
    • He also kept the money when he sold televisions to the cavepeople. In the cartoons, someone cut Bowser a check and he's been abusing it ever since.
    • In The Super Mario Bros Super Show episode "Flatbush Koopa," Bowser is attacking Brooklyn, and Mario succeeds in trapping him back in the Mushroom Kingdom. Only he realizes too late that he's trapped there too, and the episode ends with Bowser blasting away at Mario and the gang, who are running away.
  • In an episode of Justice League, a group of Superman villains teamed up, planning to use their combined talents to finally kill the big blue alien once and for all. Naturally, the Justice League wipe the floor with them before Superman even gets there, but they still manage to pull it off! The one who made the killing blow? ..... Toyman. Yeah, it was Toyman in a Humongous Mecha and Superman was really only sent thousands of years into the future and returned home at the end of the episode, but still. Toyman.
  • Possibly the only Tom and Jerry cartoon where Tom doesn't get utterly humiliated at the end by Jerry, Southbound Duckling ends with Tom... well, just watch for yourselves.
    • Tom wins in a few cartoons such as Million Dollar Cat, The Vanishing Duck and Duel Personality.
    • Actually, Tom has won in a total of 13 different cartoons.
  • In the Kim Possible movie (and original Series Finale) So The Drama, Dr. Drakken finally works out a way to beat Kim Possible and to overrun the world at the same time. It's only thanks to Ron's Love Confession that she finds back her Heroic Resolve.
  • Invader Zim has nearly succeeded in taking over the world/defeating Dib several times, only to be beaten by one Deus Ex Machina or another. However, there is one time he did win: in "Bad, Bad, Rubber Piggies", he uses a time machine to repeatedly cripple Dib in the past until he dies in the present. To repeat - Dib, the only person standing in the way of Zim's plans of World Domination, is dead. Of course, then the Butterfly of Doom kicks in, and Zim is forced to hit the Reset Button, returning Dib to normal.
    • Which really wasn't a win; Dib only died for a split second, and once he came back he was actually a greater threat than ever, almost killing Zim before he quickly hit the Reset Button. Neither Zim nor Dib ever gets a complete win, of course, but Zim does better than Dib fairly often.
  • In one episode of Phineas & Ferb, Candace actually does succeed in busting her brothers. However, this turned out to be just a dream.
    • We get a twofer when a time travel episode had her future self come back and bust them, causing a bad future where Dr. Doofenshmirtz rules. Of course, it gets fixed.
  • Transformers Cybertron episode 25, "Retreat": Starscream pulls a Determinator on the Autobots, managing to steal the Omega Lock and the three Cyber Planet Keys found thus far. This after successfully betraying Megatron. He goes on to supersize himself and become a major threat on his own until towards the end, and his showdown with Galvatron.
  • Defied in ReBoot. In Season 3 Hack & Slash would have succeeded in executing Cyris, but Slash refused to go through with it. It turns out Slash never wanted to win in the first place, counting on (now-absent) Bob to prevent him & Hack from doing anything too bad.
  • In the Ruby-Spears Megaman cartoon, while his primary goal wasn't achieved, Wily made off with the money from robbing the citizens in "Crime of the Century" and the money from selling a shrunken Washington D.C. in "The Incredible Shrinking Megaman". If you want to get technical, he also got all the money from selling Fun World tickets.
  • In The Dreamstone episode "Argorrible Attack", the Urpneys actually succeed in giving the majority of the Land of Dreams nightmares (a small time victory, but exactly what Zordrak wanted). The heroes try to give Viltheed good dreams in revenge, and it actually proves somewhat ineffective. Though granted after that they decide to just beat the crap out of all of them instead.
    • Also in "The Spidermobile" Blob and his gang effortlessly overpower the entire Wut army and capture the Dreamstone (along with Rufus, Amberley and Pildit) using the aforementioned machine. For once they do not screw things up, it is Zordrak and Urpgor instead that lose the stone, something Frizz and Nug find to be Actually Pretty Funny.
  • Four Popeye cartoons have Bluto/Brutus winning, but it was all precipiated by Popeye himself:
    • In Hospitaliky (1937) and For Better Or Nurse (1945), Popeye and Bluto are both jockeying to severely injure themselves so they can get close to nurse Olive at the hospital. Popeye ends up force-feeding his spinach to Bluto, who delivers the necessary punishment to send Popeye to the hopsital. I Bin Sculped (1961) has Popeye and Brutus vying to be Olive's model for a statue depicting a tired, beat-up specimen. Again, Popeye gives Brutus his spinach. He does so again in Round The World In 80 Days (1960) as a means to win a global race (Brutus socks Popeye on the chin and it sends Popeye circumnavigating the globe to the race's finish).

Bluto: (after he and Popeye both miss getting hit by a train) Ya runt! Now neither one of us is goin' to the hospital!
Popeye: Oh, yeah? Well, one of us is goin' to the hospital...(takes out spinach) and it ain't you!!

    • Brutus actually comes up smelling like a rose at the end of The Day The Ball Went Over (1960) without even laying a finger on Popeye, whose nitroglycerine-laced ping-pong ball explodes on him when he intended to have it explode on Brutus.

Real Life

  • On January 5, 1971 in Martin, Tennessee the Washington Generals defeated the Harlem Globetrotters 100-99 ending a 2,495-game winning streak and earning Harlem its only loss between 1962 and 1995. The Globetrotters got so involved with their comedy antics they neglected to notice how much they were trailing by in the normally pseudo-competitive game against their long time comic foils. A possibly legitimate attempt to rally back came for naught when Meadowlark Lemon missed a last second shot. The crowd in attendance was stunned with several children breaking out in tears.