Imagine the situation: Our heroes have run into a problem that none of them have the abilities or equipment necessary to solve. With nothing left to do, one of them makes a throwaway comment that one of the bad guys has just the right ability/tool needed for this job. Another hero then makes the unthinkable suggestion: Why not ask the bad guy for help?
Naturally, the heroes are a little reluctant to try this, since usually every time they meet the villain they end up trying to kill each other. But seeing no alternative, they decide to throw caution to the wind and try it. They march into the villain's lair, possibly unarmed to show they mean no harm, walk straight up to the villain and ask him for help, fully expecting at least a "No" and at worst an attempt on their lives.
But, to the heroes' (and the audience's) surprise, the villain actually agrees
to help them! This could be for one of several reasons: Maybe the villain is Affably Evil
or a Villain with Good Publicity
and wants to keep up the image of being a trustworthy and dependable guy (or girl). Maybe they're just a Punch Clock Villain
and don't actually have anything against the heroes personally. Or maybe they're just bored. But either way, they help out and the day is saved, thanks to... the bad guy!
Expect this, in many cases, NOT to result in a Heel-Face Turn
. In almost all cases of this, the heroes and villains will go back to happily trying to kill each other once the task is complete.
This can overlap with Enemy Mine
, but it's not necessarily the same thing. For this trope to be in effect, the hero (or one of the good guys) has to actually ASK the villain (or one of the bad guys) for help, whether it be fighting an enemy or solving a puzzle. Villainous Rescue
does not count as this trope either.
Also note that it doesn't have to be strictly heroes and villains, it could be just two characters who usually don't get along very well, or consider the other their rival.
- Happens in Naruto a few times.
- In the Zabuza arc of the first series, Naruto and Sasuke (who at that time are rather bitter rivals) are competing against each other fiercely in chakra control training. Until one day, at practice, Sasuke remarks that he heard Naruto asked Sakura for advice... and, embarrassed, asks him what she told him.
- A more traditional example occurs after the timeskip, during the "Search for Pain" arc. Naruto and Might Guy are travelling through the Forest of Death, when they come across Series 1 Big Bad Orochimaru. Not wanting to waste time fighting Orochimaru, Might Guy asks him if he wouldn't mind helping them hunt the Akatsuki. Orochimaru, who hates the Akatsuki just as much as they do (having been killed by one of its members, Itachi, previously), is all too happy to lend a hand.
- Kingdom Hearts II:
- In the data simulation of Twilight Town during the Longest Prologue Ever, during the search for the Seven Wonders of Twilight Town, Roxas leaves the group to check out Wonder Number Six, the Haunted Mansion, on his own. When Pence catches up with him, he tells him that they were all going to check it out together the next day, and that Seifer (the resident jerk who usually ends up fighting with Roxas and his gang every time they meet) had agreed to help out after Hayner asked him. Due to plot events happening as they do, though, we never see Seifer and Roxas's gang actually exploring the mansion together.
- Played with and subverted when Sora meets Saix for the first time. Saix mentions that they have taken Kairi hostage, and Sora asks to be taken to her. Saix tells him to show how much she means to him, and Sora gets down on his hands and knees and begs in a pose of ultimate submission. Saix remarks that Sora really does care for Kairi, and seems for a moment to be about to take Sora to her - until he firmly tells him that the answer is no and leaves.
- Also played with on the first visit to Olympus Coliseum. Hercules is being run ragged from repeated fights at the Coliseum against monsters sent from Hades himself, so Sora suggests going to ask Hades to give Herc a break for a bit. Once they finally reach Hades, however, they find him already busy dealing with Auron, and in no mood to do anyone any favours.
- The Powerpuff Girls has the episode "Forced Kin", in which the girls are defeated by a giant robot from outer space. Blossom remarks that since this robot is the most evil thing they have faced thus far, they should fight fire with fire and get someone who thinks like it does to take it down - namely, someone evil. They decide to ask Mojo Jojo, who at first irritably refuses to help, but gives in after the girls blackmail him. His reluctance to help soon turns into enthusiasm, however, as he becomes enraged at seeing that the robot stole all of his ideas, eventually going into a primal frenzy and beating the giant robot single-handed in physical combat.