backfire on(redirected from backfire on them)
To not proceed as one had planned or hoped. My plan to convince my parents that I'm responsible enough to have a car promptly backfired on me when I came home after curfew. The invading army's strategy completely backfired on them because they failed to account for the icy mountain terrain.
backfire on someone
Fig. [for something, such as a plot] to fail unexpectedly; to fail with an undesired result. Your plot backfired on you. I was afraid that my scheme would backfire on me.
backfire (on someone)
in. [for a scheme meant to cause harm to someone or something] to harm the person who runs the scheme. I hope this plan doesn’t backfire on me.