Created By: Catty on December 6, 2013

Defend Me, Random Stranger

When a character is being chased and, after running into another character, hides behind them for protection.

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Trope
When a character is being chased and, after running into another character, hides behind them for protection. Example: in Shrek, when Donkey escapes from the soldiers and meets the titular character.
Community Feedback Replies: 24
  • December 6, 2013
    DAN004
    Often overlaps with Human Shield.
  • December 6, 2013
    Kernigh
  • December 6, 2013
    ZuTheSkunk
    The title falls under the No New Stock Phrases rule, but I can't really think of anything that could just as nicely wrap up the concept behind the trope.

    Perhaps an exception could be made?
  • December 6, 2013
    Chabal2
    • Several instances in Agatha Christie's works, where a panicking young lady asks a young man to hide her, which he immediately does without question, being a Quintessential British Gentleman. In some cases it ends in marriage.
      • A particularly notable example is in the Twelve Labors of Hercule Poirot, where the girl runs into the man on vacation in Europe and walks her to her hotel room, as she is pursued by her jealous husband. There is a fight in her room and the husband collapses, felled by a blow to the head by a heavy object. The panicky girl tells him to run back to his room while she gets her mother for help. He does so, and is later visited by the mother, who tells him that they have managed to get rid of the scandal, but it will be expensive, and presents him with a list of the people who will need to be bribed (hotel staff, police...). It's a con to get money out of a well-to-do young man whose social position depends on his having a scandal-free life. The husband is actually the mother in disguise, and they ensure he remains in the dark by not speaking the local language (when two sinister-looking women only speaking Polish go by and chat with the ladies, they use his distrust of them to pretend they know everything and are demanding money as well).

  • December 6, 2013
    xanderiskander
    Hiding Behind The Tough Guy, Hiding Behind The Big Guy, Hiding Behind Someone Bigger Than You, Hiding Behind Someone Stronger.

    I've seen this so many times I can't really recall any specific works that do it off the top of my head right now. But I remember there being some cases where it turns out the person they hide behind isn't tough after all, but I think (usually) that would be this being Played for comedy.

    ^Pretty sure this is about actually physically hiding behind someone's body expecting them to fight off your pursuers. Not getting someone to hide you somewhere.
  • December 6, 2013
    ShanghaiSlave
    DAN 004 no it doesn't. This one needs the character hiding behind others and expecting them to fight/protect them, rather than them using said person as a hostage.

    description needs lotsa help. i know this one usually casts the resident The Ingenue or Naive Everygirl to be the protectee to play up their cuteness though.
  • December 7, 2013
    Koveras
    Isn't this already covered by Rescue Introduction?
  • December 7, 2013
    DAN004
    ^ IDK, it's much different from this one...
  • December 7, 2013
    Bisected8
    Rescue Introduction seems to be more about introducing a character by having them rescued.

    I don't think it covers this trope any more than any other trope on Index To The Rescue.

    The closest existing trope I can see (assuming I've understood it) is a sort of inverted Recruitment By Rescue (rather than rescuing someone to recruit them, someone's recruiting a random stranger to rescue them).

    • In Real Life, this is (or was) actually a common piece of safety advice. If someone's threatening you, find a random bystander and pretend you know them/are related.
  • December 7, 2013
    ShanghaiSlave
    ^ lol'ed at the Summon Bigger Fish pothole. i think Badass Bystander is more appropriate and truer to Real Life.
  • December 7, 2013
    Bisected8
    SBF makes more sense, given you have no idea of said stranger is going to be any more friendly than your assailant (it relies on the theory that Humans Are Good, at least on average).
  • December 7, 2013
    KarjamP
    The mods and admin makes sure that No New Stockphrases is enforced.

    IE, there will be no exceptions to that rule, ZuTheStunk.
  • December 7, 2013
    ZuTheSkunk
    @Karjam P: Ridiculous and unnecessary...

    Anyway. Random Stranger Shield? Hiding Behind Random Strangers? Bystander Shield?

    So much trouble because of one rule...
  • December 7, 2013
    Earnest
    See also Cower Power.
  • December 7, 2013
    Larkmarn
    This is Cower Power.
  • December 7, 2013
    Bisected8
    ^^^ Actually there's a pretty good reason for it (as the No New Stock Phrases page explains in depth); whenever a trope took the name of a stock phrase, people kept adding it to places where the phrase came up in a sentence, rather than actual examples of it...So Yeah.

    ^ I don't think it is. Cower Power is about physically hiding behind someone else. This trope appears to be more about finding getting some random stranger to protect you (unless I'm mistaken, in which case we need that trope!).
  • December 7, 2013
    xanderiskander
    ^No this is about a person being chased physically hiding behind someone else expecting that someone to protect them. It says so in the description. Although it could be repurposed. But you'd probably have an easier time making a new YKTTW than using someone else's.

    Yeah this is definitely covered by Cower Power. Cower Power is a terrible name though. Doesn't tell me a lot about the trope except that one person is cowering.
  • December 7, 2013
    DAN004
    Bring Cower Power to TRS plz.

    Beware, Karjam P is Knight Templar when it comes to stock phrases...
  • December 7, 2013
    Bisected8
    ^^ Hmm...I assumed the OP meant "hiding behind" someone in the metaphorical sense (the first few examples given seem to be along those lines too), given the laconic specifically mentions someone being chased.

    I'll wait until the OP clarifies things before going and starting a new YKTTW.
  • December 7, 2013
    xanderiskander
    ^ Well actually the first two shrek and mario examples involve physically hiding behind someone for protection. But I could see how you could read it as metaphor. It doesn't help that "running into" someone can mean both literally running into their body and meeting someone for the first time.
  • December 7, 2013
    Tuckerscreator
  • December 7, 2013
    DAN004
  • December 8, 2013
    ShanghaiSlave
    Bisected8's interpretation is a good distinction for this against Cower Power. otherwise, this is indeed Cower Power.
  • December 24, 2013
    BlueGuy
    Bump.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=3zoqma7b15fd9al6b1b0rtn3