->''If it ain't broke, don't fix it!''
-->-- T. Bert Lance, Jimmy Carter's Director of the Office of Management and Budget

But, on the other hand, if something '''''is''''' ''busted up'' and you '''''already''''' ''have to fix it'', why settle for making it '''''as good''''' ''as new'', when you can make it '''''Better''''' ''Than New''?

This trope has been around for ages, takes many forms and can be applied to many classes of objects (or people).

* '''Applied to the Hero:'''
** During the FinalBattle with the HeroKiller MultiversalConqueror or OmnicidalManiac, TheHero is dealt a [[FinalDeath death blow]]. As the BigBad [[EvilGloating gloats]] over his WorthyOpponent's corpse, [[TheHero our hero]] [[CameBackStrong comes back strong]], better than new, [[TookALevelInBadass taking a level in badass]] often with [[NewPowersAsThePlotDemands new powers]] he didn't have before.
** Occasionally, TheHero doesn't have to die of his wounds, but instead suffers a HeroicRROD, often due to overusing a DangerousForbiddenTechnique or SuperMode (especially after claiming "ICanStillFight!" when [[YouCanBarelyStand he can barely stand]]), a [[NonLethalKO serious life-threatening injury]], poison or an exotic disease, from which coma or bed rest he emerges some time later rejuvenated and often better than new (for example, throwing around those dangerous forbidden techniques like they were candy with no ill effects).
** In a few cases, TheHero may be made better than new by way of [[WeCanRebuildHim external medical or technological intervention]] involving AppliedPhlebotinum, ArtificialLimbs or an all-out EmergencyTransformation. Such ministrations may lead to our hero becoming a SuperSoldier or just a [[ScreamingWarrior louder]], more badass fighter.

* '''Applied to the Villain:''' This trope is morality-neutral and can be applied to the BigBad just as easily.
** Sometimes the EvilOverlord has been given a good whack that seemed [[NoOneCouldSurviveThat impossible to survive]] but it turns out he's NotQuiteDead. In a few instances, external forces decide they [[WeCanRebuildHim can rebuild him]] and he shows up again later better than new, often with a [[ArtificialLimbs cybernetic]] [[RedRightHand red]] [[FashionableAsymmetry right hand]].
** Taken to an extreme common in anime and video games, once the hero administers his ass kicking, beating the BigBad to within an inch of his life, the BigBad may [[OneWingedAngel reveal a more powerful form]], sprouting [[BodyHorror extra mouths, heads, limbs]] or SpikesOfVillainy and [[TookALevelInBadass taking a level in badass]], despite having been critically injured moments before.
** In video games, the BigBad may simply decide to [[TurnsRed Turn Red]], becoming the GreaterScopeVillain, getting their own diabolical LevelUpFillUp and [[NewPowersAsThePlotDemands new abilities]].

* '''Applied to Weapons:''' In some cases, the InfinityMinusOneSword just isn't up to the task of defeating the BigBad. Perhaps the BigBad even somehow manages to [[WreckedWeapon break]] our hero's LoyalPhlebotinum. Never fear, our hero need only take it to the local UltimateBlacksmith who will [[ReforgedBlade reforge]] the [[WreckedWeapon broken blade]] into a bright, shiny new InfinityPlusOneSword, often better than new with upgraded power or [[NewPowersAsThePlotDemands new abilities]] sufficient to administer a proper beating to the BigBad.

* '''Applied to Inanimate Objects or Places:'''
** TV shows like ''Series/PimpMyRide'' and its competitor ''[=Overhaulin'=]'' take [=viewers'=] beatup [[TheAllegedCar Alleged Cars]] and make them better than new [[CoolCar Cool Cars]], though they usually end up being AwesomeButImpractical (e.g. with LCD screens in the mud flaps).
** Alternately, Gordon Ramsay's ''Series/KitchenNightmares'' applies the same principle to failing, insolvent restaurants, making them over into high-class fine dining establishments that are far better than new.

The end result is generally that what once was not working (or broken) is now back and better than before it the problems arose. Typical gains are anywhere from a ten percent to a ten thousand percent improvement. The change is usually permanent.

This is a super-trope to things like CameBackStrong, WeCanRebuildHim, StolenGoodReturnedBetter, to some degree TurnsRed or OneWingedAngel and often ReforgedBlade.

Compare with StatusBuff, which may give a temporary bonus to TheHero but it wears off and he generally reverts to "normal" afterward. In some cases, the change is permanent but the initial effect is transitory until they learn to [[HowDoIShotWeb control]] their new power reliably.

Cases where someone tries to make something better than new (often with comically catastrophic results) may be a case of TimTaylorTechnology. If something doesn't work, all it needs is More Power (beware of ExplosiveOverclocking)!



[[folder: Anime and Manga ]]

* This is a trope used repeatedly throughout the run of ''Anime/DragonBallZ'', mostly in regards to Saiyans. When they are severely injured, they become stronger once they've fully recovered, which is the primary reason why Goku and Vegeta become as obscenely powerful as they do (the other half of it being TrainingFromHell).
** Cell surviving his own self-destruction and returning stronger than ever is a textbook example, as he gains an enhanced version of his perfect form; the same one that Gohan had beaten out of him just prior.
* ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'' -- Yusuke appears to be [[FinalDeath dead]], however he eventually wakes up better than new [[spoiler:as his [[SuperpoweredEvilSide demonic half]] awakens]].
* In ''{{LightNovel/Durarara}}'', Shizuo Heiwajima's [[{{Lampshaded}} noticed]] that he seems to be prone to this: not only was he [[HollywoodHealing never crippled by his constant, severe childhood injuries]] like other people would be, but he'd always come out of them stronger than he was before.


[[folder: Fan Fiction ]]

* FanFic/AGrowingAffection has a couple after the Rescue Naruto arc.
** Shino loses his leg to the Three-Tails. It is replaced with a special colony of Aburame beetles that work just as well as his original leg and can be used like his other insects if he needs to. And that is before he teaches them to carry back-up weapons and perform an extending kick.
** [[spoiler:Thanks to the Akatsuki's attempt to remove the Nine-Tails, the Fox ends up merging with Naruto instead. The result? Naruto is now has the abilities of his four tails cloak all the time, without the drawbacks.]]
* In the Literature/{{Worm}} fanfic, FanFic/{{Intrepid}}, Bryce triggered as a result of his sister's death and his parents being useless, becoming a [[GadgeteerGenius Tinker]] who specializes in this. Everything he builds is better than before, scaling until he runs out of resources.


[[folder: Film - Live Action ]]

* ''Film/InspectorGadget'' -- John Brown is an average Joe security guard at Bradford Labs until Sanford Scolex raids the lab, resulting in a confrontation that leaves Brown with a broken body. Brown is re-built into a better than new, if bumbling, cyborg detective: Inspector Gadget. Gadget has all sorts of technology and comedic gadgets built into his rebuilt body.
* ''Film/KungFuHustle'' -- TheHero gets fully healed (and becomes much more powerful than before) because [[spoiler:being beaten so bad by the BigBad turned out to awaken his [[LifeEnergy Chi]]]].
* ''Film/TheMatrix'' -- [[spoiler:After he gets killed by Agent Smith]], Neo [[spoiler:becomes [[TheChosenOne The One]]]] and gets much more powerful than before because of being beaten by BigBad [[spoiler:which was prophesied earlier, in passing, by [[TheOmniscient The Oracle]] when she remarked "...it looks like you're waiting for something ... your next life, maybe"]].
* The repaired and upgraded Gipsy Danger in ''Film/PacificRim''. This trope's exact name is also the title of a song in the soundtrack.
* ''Film/RoboCop1987'' -- After officer Alex Murphy is pronounced dead, OCP takes his remains and effectively resurrects him using cybernetic / robotic technology into the NighInvulnerable cyborg police officer [=RoboCop=]. Not only do they "fix" him, they make him about 1000% better. Granted, he ostensibly [[LaserGuidedAmnesia loses his memory]] in the process, but that eventually wears off.


[[folder: Literature ]]

* In Max Barry's ''Literature/MachineMan'', the protagonist Dr. Charles Neumann does this to ''himself.'' After [[spoiler:accidentally amputating his leg, he designs a robotic prosthesis that he considers superior in every important regard]]. Things do not go entirely to plan.
* In ''Literature/TheEmperorsSoul'', this practice is considered a vital part of a forger's arsenal. When you must leave a copy of something behind you, make the copy better than the original, so that there's less reason for the mark to reject it out of hand. Shai demonstrates it [[RuleOfThree thrice]] during the story: the first time with her desk (making it a better version of itself), the second time with the rest of her room (slowly redecorating and remodeling her cell until it's nicer than the emperor's quarters), and the third time with the titular soul itself.
* In the ''TabletopGame/BattleTech'' novel Measure of a Hero, the main character's ''Penetrator'' battlemech had been nearly destroyed in combat prior to the start of the story, but he'd been allowed to rebuild it with Clan weaponry, giving it a huge boost to its damage and range and making it much deadlier than it was originally (and the ''Penetrator'' is considered a very good mech).


[[folder: Live-Action TV ]]

* ''Series/TheBionicWoman'' -- Jaime's chute fails on a parachuting date with ''Series/TheSixMillionDollarMan'' and she suffers catastrophic injuries. He convinces his boss to authorize bionic replacement surgery to restore Jaime's destroyed legs, right arm and right ear.
* ''Series/KitchenNightmares'' -- Applies a similar principle to Series/PimpMyRide when trying to resurrect failing, insolvent restaurants, making them over into high-class fine dining establishments that are far better than new. Sadly, the effects are sometimes transitory or the businesses are in such bad shape that they go out of business anyway.
* ''Series/PimpMyRide'' -- Xzibit and the crew at West Coast Customs take in viewers' [[TheAllegedCar Alleged Cars]] and turn them into better than new [[CoolCar Cool Cars]], even though they often end up being AwesomeButImpractical. In similar fashion, Overhaulin' takes a similar approach, except that the mark is unaware their beater is being overhauled until they're reunited with their car during some contrived comedic setup.
* ''PowerRangers'' -- In several seasons, the existing [[HumongousMecha Zords]] were SoLastSeason, and so got defeated and/or blown up by TheManBehindTheMan and were then rebuilt into more powerful better than new versions.
* ''Series/TheSixMillionDollarMan'' -- Seriously injured in a test flight, former astronaut Austin is given [[ArtificialLimbs bionic replacements]] for his legs, his [[FashionableAsymmetry right arm]], and [[ElectronicEyes one eye]], leaving him with superhuman speed and strength and telescopic vision. He can run more than 60 MPH, jump several stories, see objects from miles away and in the dark, and lift impossible weights ([[FridgeLogic the latter without the addition of a bionic spine]]).
* At the beginning of ''Series/KamenRiderBlackRX'', the new BigBad breaks [[Series/KamenRiderBlack Black's]] Kingstone, his TransformationTrinket and the source of his power, and throws him into space, causing him to come crashing to Earth like a meteor. However, as Kamen Rider Black is the 'Child Of the Sun', being exposed directly to the sun repairs his broken Kingstone and revives him as the far more powerful Black RX.


[[folder: Video Games ]]

* Downplayed in ''Flash Element 2''. If the self-healing critters are permitted to heal all the way, they end up with exactly one hit point more than the "maximum" they started with.


[[folder: Web Comics ]]

* In ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'', the Heterodynes' famous constructs Punch and Judy were torn apart by Von Pinn early in the series. Gilgamesh Wulfenbach not only repaired them, he improved them. Punch for one gained the ability to talk (quite eloquently too). What's even more amazing is that the two gained the ability to ''have children'' -- they are now the proud parents of a rambunctious little girl.
* The villain [[WreckedWeapon shatters]] Roy's sword the first time they meet in ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'', in order to demonstrate that even with a temporary undead-killing enchantment on it the fight is still hopeless for Roy. This naturally leads to a SideQuest where Roy obtains [[ThunderboltIron a piece of star metal]] to reforge the broken blade into a proper undead-killing weapon (complete with [[TechnicolorFire green flame effect]] whenever it activates).