Created By: Koveras on September 14, 2010 Last Edited By: Koveras on April 20, 2011
Troped

Back From The Dead And On A Mission

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope
Alternative title: The Revenant, but I dislike it because the classical revenant (and many fictional portrayals) is someone who came Back from the Dead on their own to exact vengeance, which is a different trope.

This trope is about a dead person who is brought back because his skills are needed to accomplish some mission (perhaps because it's too difficult for any living hero, or because someone officially dead is required for it, etc.). In short, some third party resurrects him and sends him on a quest. Will go under Beginning Tropes. Subtrope of Back from the Dead.

  • In Mass Effect 2, Commander Shepard is killed but brought back by the Cerberus who send him/her out to find out the truth behind the disappearances of human colonies and then to undertake the Suicide Mission to stop the new menace.
  • Locke D'Averam from Revenant is a general from the ancient times who has been resurrected by The Kingdom to wage war on the Children of Change and rescue the king's missing daughter from them.

This trope is not about heroes being resurrected after getting killed mid-series. See Disney Death for that. This trope is for when resurrection is used in a premise of the story.

Should We Have This?? If so, it Needs a Better Title.
Community Feedback Replies: 46
  • December 6, 2010
    Koveras
    So, no other examples, huh? Well, unless some do pop up in the next 24, I am discarding this, then...
  • December 6, 2010
    Pickly
    Age Of Wonders: the Wizards Throne does this later in the story. It turns out that Merlin had been killed, and resurrected by Gabriel, to combat the rebellious wizards.
  • December 6, 2010
    OranjeLament
    Does the Nameless One in Planescape Torment count?
  • December 6, 2010
    troacctid
    Related to Comic Book Death.

  • December 6, 2010
    Koveras
    ^^No, I don't think so. He wasn't so much resurrected as has made himself a priori Type IV/VII immortal.
  • December 6, 2010
    berr

    "And this time, no force in the Universe can STOP ME!"
  • December 6, 2010
    EponymousKid
    I think that "because no one else living can accomplish whatever" part makes this way, way too specific.
  • December 6, 2010
    Prophet
    • The Impure World Ressurection from Naruto is a jutsu used to bring back dead ninja who were especially skilled or powerful.
  • December 6, 2010
    Dacilriel
    In Inu Yasha Urasue tries to resurrect Kikyo and command her. It doesn't work out so well.
  • December 6, 2010
    JackMackerel
    Blackest Night's Black Hand and his lanterns.
  • December 6, 2010
    BlackDragon
    Humm... I remember an old side-scrolling brawler for the Sega Genesis that has this as a framing-device - you're some sort of dead hero (or two, if a second player wants to join), and Zeus just resurrected you so you could go save his daughter. Opens with "Rise from your grave!". Oh, and you can transform into various beasts and half-beasts by picking up powerups. Can't remember the name, though. Anyone else?
  • December 6, 2010
    jojabar
    Undead Set On Revenge?
  • December 7, 2010
    Arivne
    I agree with Eponymous Kid. If this were changed to "brought back from the dead to fulfill a mission" it would get more examples, and you wouldn't even have to change the title. For example:

    Film
    • Universal Soldier. After being killed, soldiers are brought back to life via cyborgization and used on missions too dangerous for regular soldiers.
  • December 7, 2010
    Koveras
    Well, OK, I'll generalize the description.
  • December 7, 2010
    LarryD
    In The DCU, Deadman has this as his origin. The entire Black Lantern Corps runs on this.
  • December 7, 2010
    Darthcaliber
    The Princess Bride: Westley is killed by Humperdink so Inigo and Fezzik simply take him to Miracle Max for resurrection.
  • December 8, 2010
    Koveras
    ^I don't know if this counts. I haven't read TPB, but if I understand correctly, this one is more of a Disney Death than a beginning trope.
  • December 8, 2010
    ZombieAladdin
    This happens in Dragon Ball Z so often that it's a defining characteristic of the series. Any hero the villains kill is resurrected with the Dragon Balls so they can fight off the next villains.
  • December 28, 2010
    Koveras
    ^That only counts if they stay dead until the end of the current villain arc and are resurrected when the next arc begins. Is this the case (I've watched too few episodes of DBZ to decide...)?
  • December 28, 2010
    ZombieAladdin
    I think this describes Jesus Christ pretty well.
  • December 28, 2010
    Koveras
    ^Nah, he has had a Disney Death, since he was killed and resurrected when he was almost done with his mission. Besides, the Apostles had to finish everything up for him.
  • December 28, 2010
    ssfsx17
    The video game Altered Beast. "AWISE FWOM YO GWAVE!"
  • December 28, 2010
    philomela786
    Title: The Zombie Pawn?

    And an example would be the corpsey guy from Hocus Pocus. Name escapes me, and now must go put clothes in dryer.
  • December 28, 2010
    LolipodDistortion
    What about The Crow?
  • December 28, 2010
    Mozgwsloiku
    Captain Barbossa, brought back to life by Tia Dalma so that he can sail to hell and get Jack out.
  • December 28, 2010
    troacctid
  • December 29, 2010
    ZombieAladdin
    Oh right, looks like I replied twice independently without even knowing it.

    The way Dragon Ball Z works is that major characters are brought back specifically because his (or sometimes her) skills are needed. Minor characters, extras, and unseen deaths are undone between arcs, after the villain has been defeated but before the next threat arrives.

    With the former, it has happened to Goku twice (killed by Raditz and resurrected to fight Frieza; killed by a heart condition later on and resurrected to fight Buu), though I can't recall any other instances at the moment. Most of the other fighters are either there on reserve to hold off the bad guys until Goku or Vegeta arrives or repeatedly manage to avoid getting killed.
  • December 29, 2010
    morenohijazo
    About Dragon Ball Z: the time he was resurrected after being killed by Raditz was to fight Vegeta, not Frieza. Piccolo was the one who was resurrected to fight Frieza, after being killed by Nappa (yet another example).
  • December 29, 2010
    SolarisPrime
    Ressurected for a Reason? Revived for a Reason?

  • December 29, 2010
    CrypticMirror
    In the new series of Doctor Who the Timelords try this with The Master, thinking his underhanded deviousness would make him a great soldier. However they forgot his natural tendency towards self-preservation and he legged it.
  • December 29, 2010
    SomeGuy
  • December 29, 2010
    BlackDragon
    @ssfsx17: YES! That was exactly the game I was thinking of, and just couldn't remember the name of... Altered Beast. Kind of an Excuse Plot, really, but it IS a textbook example of this trope.
  • December 29, 2010
    TBTabby
    Kid Eternity, an obscure DC hero, can take the form of historical figures for this purpose.
  • December 30, 2010
    Koveras
    @Some Guy: I would launch it, but I still don't like any title in particular... "Pragmatic Resurrection" doesn't really convey what this trope is about.
  • December 30, 2010
    LarryD
    DC Comics:
    • In the beginning of their original series, Dr. Magnus would rebuild the Metal Men anytime a monster of the week would show up.
    • Deadman's concept is based on this.
    • Perhaps as a nod to this The Challangers of the Unknown considered themselves to be "living on borrowed time" (they'd survived a plane crash unscathed).
    • Robotman is a borderline case.
    Marvel Universe's original Deathlok arguably qualifies.
  • December 30, 2010
    Gamesbot
    If I could suggest a new title, how about:

    Reborn to Kill

    ?
  • December 30, 2010
    troacctid
    ^ Too narrow. The trope shouldn't require killing.
  • December 31, 2010
    morenohijazo
    @Gamesbot I second that.
  • December 31, 2010
    Koveras
    Kill is not necessarily the purpose... but how about Reborn To Kick Ass? Or Brought Back To Kick Ass?
  • December 31, 2010
    EponymousKid
    If we count Robotman or Deadman or the Challengers of the Unknown or the Metal Men, we're simply defining this as "when someone is brought back from death, or even if they never died, in any fashion for any reason."
  • April 18, 2011
    Koveras
  • April 18, 2011
    LordLaharlsVassal
    Sounds like Spawn.
  • April 18, 2011
    dalek955
    In Order Of The Stick, Redcloak was brought back to life by the Dark One for the purpose of building a sovereign goblin nation.

    Title: Cant Rest In Peace Still Need You? (in the spirit if Cant Kill You Still Need You)
  • April 19, 2011
    TBTabby
  • April 19, 2011
    lamoxlamae
    Caleb from Blood. Opening line? "I live... again!" The first game is him out to find and avenge his wife and best friend after their god has forsaken them.

    Also I think the title is perfect, unless you would rather use Revenant. Both could be used, one for main and one for laconic.
  • April 20, 2011
    morenohijazo
    Back To Strike Again?

    If a Dragon Ball Z has to be here, it must be the second time Goku is revived. They didn't revive him right after he was killed by Cell, what meant that he would never get revived. Seven years later, Gohan is the only alive warrior who hasn't been killed or absorbed by Majin Buu, and he can't beat him, so Goku has to be specifically revived my special ways to help him.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=b12p1els8hv6p6te0skg3cvj