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Tropes and genres
Synonym(s)Character Torture, Hurt/Hurt
Related tropes/genresDarkfic, Get 'em, Hurt/Comfort, Shockfic, Whump
See alsoDead Dove: Do Not Eat, Muldertorture, Script Torture, Scullytorture, Skinnertorture
Related articles on Fanlore.

Torture is genre of fanworks that fetishizes hurting a favorite character a lot, but unlike with hurt/comfort, there is no or very little comfort, whereas fans of h/c often see the comfort as the pay-off, with torture - the extreme hurt whether physical, psychological or both - as the point and the main attraction.

Some fans consider torture a subtype of h/c.[1] That kinship of the genres shows in that sometimes the term hurt/hurt is used, i.e. the same pattern as h/c but without the comfort part.

Whumping is sometimes used in similar ways, but sometimes it also used for fanfic that hurts a character a lot, but also has comfort. There are also other sometimes fandom-specific usages such as "Get 'em" in Star Trek.

An early example of a torture story is Dee L. Meuser's "Revenge", published in Warp 9 #1 in 1969. A mad scientist, out to get all Vulcans for perfecting the transporter before he could get his own version completed and patented, captures Spock and McCoy and puts the former through various nightmarish punishments. The story has one bit of horrific subtlety. Much of the whipping, beating, etc. is actually done by a giant creature called an Amrian -- a race whom Spock knows to have a completely non-violent civilization.




  1. ^ Rosa's Hurtin' For Comfort rec page circa April 2002 (via Wayback Machine) Accessed October 12, 2008