->'''[[WellIntentionedExtremist 1]]''': "You're a curse, a fool! Guided by pointless queries!"
->'''[[TheHero 9]]''': "And ''you'' are a blind man, guided by fear."
->'''1''': "Sometimes, [[TropeNamer fear is the appropriate response]]."
-->-- ''WesternAnimation/{{Nine}}''

Usually PlayedForLaughs. A character is facing a conflict. TheBigBad, TheDreaded, or a similar foe has been revealed at last. This may be the moment of triumph for the protagonist... however, instead of standing and fighting it like a Hero would do, this character does what any of ''us'' would do: freezes up in terror, screams, runs away as fast as his legs can carry him, or a combination of the first three.

Also used with a party of two or more, when they are cornered. One asks "What do we do now?" and one says something along the lines of "we... RUN!", often having about a three-second head start before the others realize what is happening. Sometimes this may be used to save another character, who is completely oblivious to the danger. This, of course, is only one type of example of this trope.

The fear responses ordinarily come in four different types:
# '''Freezing''' - Going completely immobile in fear, which may conceal the character from the foe's notice. [[note]]This is a relatively common behavior in many animals. As it turns out, humans are among the few species on the planet with any sort of proficiency in seeing stationary objects.[[/note]]
# '''Flight''' - Running from the threat at top speed.
# '''Scream''' - Giving a cry of terror as loudly as possible (which may or may not deter the threat, but might alert someone who can help).
# A combination of the three above.

Related to YouCanPanicNow, and RunOrDie. The distinction between this and RunOrDie is that with this, you're choosing to break off the engagement mostly on your own terms, but with Run Or Die, you're narrowly avoiding (or escaping) what you know is a CurbStompBattle with you on the wrong end.

A Mentor may explain to a young character that only a FearlessFool would face this when he had options.

See also ScrewThisImOuttaHere

----

!!Examples:
[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Anime and Manga]]
* Unusually for a shonen series, in ''LightNovel/{{Slayers}}'' it's a common gag for Lina to throw a Burst Rondo in the face of powerful foes that don't go down in the first few volleys, then skedaddle.
* Another shonen example comes from ''Manga/FairyTail''. In a competition to determine the next S-Class wizard, Natsu goes up against Gildarts, one of the most powerful (if not the most powerful) member of the Fairy Tail guild outside of the Guildmaster. After a short battle, Natsu almost gets passed but refuses to go on without winning the fight. Gildarts's response is to release his full power in order to teach him about this. Natsu is paralyzed with fear, then briefly tries to [[{{Determinator}} charge anyway]] but is paralyzed again and admits defeat. Gildarts then reveals that Natsu passed the test, despite not winning the fight (he had no chance anyway), as SensingYouAreOutmatched is a sign of strength.
* ''LightNovel/SwordArtOnline'': Kirito's and Asuna's response to spawning [[SpellMyNameWithAThe The]] [[BossFight Gleam Eyes]] in the 74th-floor dungeon is to high-tail it out of the boss room.
* In ''Manga/KenichiTheMightiestDisciple'', the titular protagonist usually screams in terror and runs for his life whenever his masters announce that they intend to increase the severity of Kenichi's training regime. Since this is a series that takes TrainingFromHell SerialEscalation, Kenichi's reaction is completely justified.
* There's a bit in ''Manga/AhMyGoddess'' where Mara and Hild have put together a magical trap that zaps all of the main cast except Belldandy... and then Bell accidentally releases them. Mara realizes that this overloaded the trap's system, and takes off running until Hild snaps, "Mara! ''Halt!'' Explain yourself!" Mara explains that overloading means the thing's about to ''explode''. "Mara... Thank you for ''explaining''!" as ''Hild'' runs away.
* It's played in ''Manga/OnePiece'' by Kamakiri after he discovers that [[BigBad Enel]] can become intangible [[ElementalPowers (by turning into electricity)]] thanks to his [[PowerUpFood Devil Fruit]] [[ShockAndAwe power]].
* Joseph Joestar runs from more powerful opponents in the second (and briefly in the third) arc of ''Manga/JoJosBizarreAdventure''. Subverted, though, in that it's usually a part of one of his plans.
* ''Manga/SailorMoon'' does this frequently. Instead of fighting the MonsterOfTheWeek, she will typically cower in fear or run from the enemy's attacks, only finally attacking after a RousingSpeech from Tuxedo Mask (or, in his absence, any character who happens to be present). The trait shows up less and less frequently later on in the show.
* The excuse the residents of the net surf village use when Taichi accuses them of being wimps for hiding when a demon supposedly appears in the nearby net ocean in ''Manga/DigimonVTamer01''. This forces Taichi to rely on a land based Digimon, after teaching him how to swim of course.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Comic Books]]
* From Comicbook/{{Watchmen}}:
-->''"[I]n any event, [[BeamMeUpScotty I never said]] 'The superman exists and he's American.' What I said was ''''God''' exists and he's American.' If that statement starts to chill you after a couple of moments' consideration, then don't be alarmed. A feeling of intense and crushing religious terror at the concept indicates only that you are still sane."''
--->-- '''Prof. Milton Glass''', "Dr. Manhattan: Super-Powers and the Superpowers," ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}''
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Fan Fic]]
* {{Deconstructed}} in ''Fanfic/PokeWars'', where the mass panics set off by the MassSuperEmpoweringEvent are shown to be just as dangerous as the disaster itself; a particularly standout example occurs during the Muk rampage in Hearthome: in their desperation to flee from the Muk, many people trampled or shoved others aside, making them easy targets for the Muk.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Films -- Animated]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/{{Nine}}'', the TropeNamer, 1 says this right before the Winged Beast attacks. However, considering that 8 tries to fight the Winged Beast before they run, this trope applies more to the awakening of the Fabrication Machine, in which 7, 9 and 5 immediately run away as soon as it's awakened.
* There are several instances in ''WesternAnimation/TheRoadToElDorado'', one of which involves Miguel and Tulio being cornered by a raging bull.
-->'''Miguel:''' What do we do now?
-->'''Tulio:''' You... pet him. And I'll... RUN!
* In the ''WesternAnimation/JimmyNeutronBoyGenius'' movie, Nick runs out into the arena, holding a spear, to face Poultra and the Yolkians. Suddenly, Poultra starts hatching and her three eyes glare down at Nick... who then screams like a girl and runs away.
* In ''Disney/LadyAndTheTramp 2'', Scamp and Angel are talking on a railroad about what they could do living in the wild. There is a train coming toward them, unnoticed by Scamp.
-->'''Angel:''' Run.
-->'''Scamp:''' Yeah, and run!
-->'''Angel:''' No, I MEAN RUN!
* ''WesternAnimation/YellowSubmarine'': "Once more into the breach, dear [[CardCarryingVillain Meanies]]. You're advancing in the wrong direction! Retreat ''backwards''!"
* In ''Disney/TheLionKingOneAndAHalf'', one of the more notable examples of the screaming response is directly advised:
-->'''Uncle Max:''' (to Timon) What do you do if you see a hyena?
-->''''Timon:''' Scream "Mommy!"
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* A good villainous example for that one would be from ''Film/ThePrincessBride'', when Inigo finally catches up with Count Rugen, and Rugen... runs away.
* ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'':
** When the hobbits first meet the Ringwraiths, their only strategies are running or hiding (both things Hobbits can do very well in a pinch).
** Gandalf is listed in RunOrDie already, but it's worth pointing out that, in the film version, he doesn't just inform them that the Balrog is unstoppable. [[TalkingIsAFreeAction He calmly explains]] what a Balrog actually is while it's coming at them (not as {{Egregious}} as it sounds though, as it wasn't even in visual range), pauses to take a deep breath, looks shaken, and then shouts... ''"RUN!"'' and takes off ahead of the others, while they are still standing there looking at it. Making an about-face in the process.
** A bit of a meta-example shows up in the production of the movies, where the first attempts to shoot large-scale battles between orcs and men using computer simulated armies who, left to their own AI devices, decided [[ScrewThisImOuttaHere the best tactic was to run away from the enemy]].
* ''Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail'': The Rabbit of Caerbannog has just killed several of Arthur's knights.
-->'''Arthur:''' Run away! Run away!
* ''Film/IndianaJonesAndTheLastCrusade'': Salah has just met Marcus Brody in Iskenderun. A German comes up to them and invites them to a museum. Salah realizes that there is no museum in Iskenderun and that they're in danger.
-->'''Salah:''' Run.
-->'''Marcus:''' Yes. [snip]
-->'''Salah:''' Run!
-->'''Marcus:''' Did you say...?
-->'''Salah:''' (''punches German in the face'') Run!
* Before they were the Film/{{Ghostbusters}}, Doctors Stanz, Venkman, and Spengler do this in the [[BigApplesauce New York]] Public Library, after attempting to bum-rush a ghost.
--> '''Librarian:''' Did you see it? What was it?
--> '''Ray:''' (''still fleeing'') We'll get back to you!
* From the (now infamous) 1998 version of ''Film/{{Godzilla|1998}}'':
-->'''Animal:''' What do we do now?
-->'''Philippe:''' Running would be a good idea.
* PlayedForLaughs in ''Franchise/StarWars'': Han Solo and Chewbacca foolishly charge a squad of stormtroopers, who run away. A moment later, Han and Chewie reappear, running the other way with a larger group of stormtroopers in pursuit...
** Exactly the same happend in third Film/MadMax, where Max was chasing a lone mechanic, only to start running away from an anrgry mob of Bartertown guards.
* When the "Blood-Red Van" comes after the dogs in ''[[Film/HomewardBoundTheIncredibleJourney Homeward Bound 2: Lost in San Francisco]]'', they immediately react by running and hiding.
* In ''Film/{{District 9}}'', the main character, Wikus, initially turns and runs away when finally confronted by his bounty hunter, Koobus.
* Disney's ''Film/BedknobsAndBroomsticks'': After it becomes clear that their weapons are useless against the animated armor/costumes, the Nazi soldiers run like bunnies.
* In ''Film/ShortCircuit'':
-->'''Ben Jabituya''': I don't know about you, but I am planning to scream and run.
* In ''Film/TheWizardOfOz,'' the Wizard tells the Cowardly Lion he's been too hard on himself for thinking he's cowardly for being afraid to fight a powerful wicked witch who's been trying to kill them, pointing out anyone would be terrified of that.
-->'''Wizard:''' You think that simply because you run away from danger, you have no courage. You're confusing courage with wisdom!
* ''Franchise/PiratesOfTheCaribbean'''s Jack Sparrow screams at things quite often, runs away even more, but his behaviour when the Kraken's after him frightens the whole ship:
-->"Jack's hat['s overboard]! Bring 'er about!"\\
"No no! Leave it!" ''(Dead silence.)'' "Run."
* ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises'' has Bane kidnapping a scientist from the CIA by destroying the airplane they are on while holding on to a rope lowered by his men from another plane flying above them. And that's just the first thing we see him do in the movie.
--> '''Bane:''' ''"Calm down, Doctor. Now is not the time for fear. [[FromBadToWorse That comes later]]."''
* Happens in the bloopers of "Film/TheAvengers2012" where instead of Bruce Banner turning into the Hulk and punching out a giant Chitauri, he runs away like a little girl (quite literally), whilst Captain America starts cracking up. Even better when he starts skipping at the end.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature]]
* A RunningGag in the CaptainUnderpants series involves this exchange of dialogue between George and Harold:
-->'''George:''' I've got an idea.
-->'''Harold:''' What?
-->'''George:''' RUN!
* Literature/CiaphasCain's reaction to Necrons tends to be like this. Then again, he's one of the few people to have survived an encounter with them, so he's well aware of how deadly they are.
* Harry Dresden from ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' reminds us that running away from things you cannot hurt is the best strategy at least twice in every novel. And he really knows best. In fact, he spends quite a bit of his downtime running so that the next time something tries to kill him he'll be able to run away even ''better''.
** Unfortunately, the monsters always seem to cheat, with their stupid unnatural speed...
** Later in the series, this gets turned around. In ''Changes'', for example, Harry comes upon a [[OurVampiresAreDifferent Red Court Vampire]] in his office building. The vampire's entirely justified response is to scream its head off and run away like his ass was on fire. Which, to be fair, was [[KillItWithFire very nearly the case]].
* Rincewind from the ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' series adapted this as his default strategy in any remotely dangerous situation (particularly the running type).
** Being GenreSavvy and having a strong belief in his own [[CosmicPlaything pre-emptive Karma]], Rincewind has a very broad definition of "any remotely dangerous situation".
** He also knows more than anyone else how to run away: It's all about knowing you are running ''away'' from one thing, not ''towards'' something else. He's practically turned it into his religion, which has a [[IncrediblyLamePun large following]].
* Tal of the SeventhTower understands the dangers of Aenir and the tower much better than Milla does and lacks her ProudWarriorRaceGuy characteristics, resulting in him having far more sense when it comes to knowing when to run and when to fight. It causes serious tensions between them at times. It's played completely seriously.
* {{Literature/Flashman}} runs away in almost every conceivable situation. He'll cheerfully abandon friends to save his skin. For example, in ''Flashman at the Charge,'' while being pursued by Cossacks, he threw a naked woman out of his sledge to lighten the load. (It worked, but the guy driving the sledge was so pissed that he in turn abandoned Flashy when the sledge overturned.)
* Fisk is always trying to teach Michael this in the first two books of the ''KnightAndRogueSeries''. By the third, he's finally getting it.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Live-Action TV]]
* Series/RedDwarf does this frequently, but the standout moment is from "Meltdown" [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Z9leeN7j0k the 6.28 mark here]]:
-->'''Rimmer''' (having just beamed onto a planet from a ship): "Now what?"
-->'''Kryten:''' "Now we run, sir. I'd suggest we ambulate as fast as the local gravity will allow!"
-->'''Rimmer:''' "Why?"
-->'''Kryten:''' "Well, because of that, sir." (points to gigantic {{Kaiju}}-esque moving wax work monsters, then when Rimmer makes no response he turns around and sees that he is now half a field away and still running).
* This seems to happen quite a bit on ''Series/DoctorWho''; the default ''modus operandi'' seems to be: Go somewhere, walk around until you find something horrid that wants to kill you, then run away from it until you find something whose Polarity you can Reverse, fixing the problem.
** Increasingly {{Lampshaded}} in the new series.
* An episode of ''{{Sliders}}'' had the group go to a witch-doctor, and upon not being able to pay for the service, they form a huddle so that Arturo can outline his plan: "Run! Run like hell!"
* The Dekaranger episode of ''Series/KaizokuSentaiGokaiger'' feature this exchange, when it suddenly occurred to the wanted space pirates that walking into S.P.D. HQ was likely to get them arrested:
-->'''Jasmine:''' "I suggest you all turn yourselves in."
-->'''Luka:''' "Well, if that's how it's going to be, then we'll just have to..." (cracks knuckles) "...RUN!"
* There's a villainous variation in the TV movie ''Spenser: Small Vices''. After a failed attempt on Spenser's life, a hitman flees the scene, although fear wasn't his motivation. Spenser tells his wife that the hitman is a pragmatist when it comes to killing; he ran to avoid arrest or death and wasn't interested in proving who was the bigger man.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* Gangsters, vampires, demons? Wrestling/ElSanto will take them all on. Dogs, not so much.[[/folder]]

[[folder: Theatre]]
* From Creator/GilbertAndSullivan's ''The Gondoliers'':
-->''In enterprise of martial kind, when there was any fighting''
-->''He led his regiment from behind (he found it less exciting),''
-->''But when away his regiment ran, his place was at the fore, o!''
-->''That celebrated, cultivated, underated nobleman, the Duke of Plaza-Toro!''
** Also ''ThePiratesOfPenzance'':
-->''They come in force, with stealthy stride.''
-->''Our wisest course, is now to ... HIDE!''
* ''Theatre/TheTamingOfTheShrew'' gives us this rather priceless stage direction when the ZanyScheme goes awry:
--> ''Exuent [[KidSidekick BIONDELLO]], [[GuileHero TRANIO]], and [[UnwittingPawn Pedant]], [[OhCrap as fast as may be]]''
* Shows up in ''{{Spamalot}}'', which isn't surprising, as it's just the stage version of the Holy Grail (see also under Film above). Worth mentioning because they turned "Run Away" into a broadway hit song.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Tabletop Games]]
* While designing your character during a game of TabletopGames/DontRestYourHead, you get to pick how your character responds to abusing their [[PowerBornOfMadness Madness Power]]. Checking off a [[FearIsTheAppropriateResponse flight response]] means avoidance. Whether you do that buy running away, turtling up, or hiding behind a web of lies is all up to you. Meanwhile, your [[RageBreakingPoint fight response]] is all about destruction. Your fists are one way, but words are also among the many ways you can hurt those around you.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Video Games]]
* In GuildWars, this trope applies to a nobleman's responce to harpies attacking a festival that he is at.
--> '''Prince Mehtu the Wise''': "Everyone move to the exits in an orderly fashion! There is only one of them! This is not the time to panic!"
--> ''More harpies land''
--> '''Prince Mehtu the Wise''': "Very well! This is now the time to panic!"
* PlayedForLaughs in ''VideoGames/{{Portal 2}}''
--> '''Wheatley''': But don't be alarmed, all right? Although if you do feel alarmed, try to hold on to that feeling because that is the proper reaction to being told that you've got brain damage.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Web Comics]]
* In ''ComicBook/{{Buck Godot|Zap Gun for Hire}}'', the [[WorfEffect previously]] [[CurbStompBattle absolutely]] [[ImplacableMan undefeatable]] [[{{Paparazzi}} Hyraxx]]' reaction to the Ulgib mercenaries is a simple, panicked "RUN!"
* In ''Webcomic/{{Freefall}}'', after learning that the area they are in is going to be hit by an asteroid, Sam and Helix immediately decide to panic (against Florence's protests).
--->'''Sam''': Two votes to one. The motion to panic has been carried. Screaming and flailing may start immediately.
* In ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'', this is the standard response every time they face overwhelming odds (which they seem to do with great regularity).
* In ''Webcomic/{{Goblins}}'', a chance encounter with an EldritchAbomination gives us this exchange:
---> '''Grem''': (''unsheathing his sword'') I am a goblin prince. [[BadassBoast I know when to fight.]]
---> '''Dies Horribly''': (''grabbing Grem's arm'') I am a ''COWARD!'' I know when to ''RUN!''
* This is the spirit behind Maxim 3 from 'Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'' "An Ordnance Technician at a dead run outranks everybody." This turns up in the comic as when [[MadScientist Kevyn]] or [[MadBomber Pi]] start looking panicky. Anyone nearby should feel scared, very scared.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Web Original]]
* In one of the first episodes in ''RedVsBlue'', Grif and Simmons both turn around and are looking right down the cannon belonging to Sheila [the tank]. Simmons says, "All right, on three, we make a break for it." As he starts counting, Grif quietly runs away. (Ironically, this made Grif a better target and he was the one who got fired at immediately.)
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' gives us this exchange:
-->'''Spike:''' Now if you don't back off, you'll see what us ''ponies'' do when confronted by a huge group of jerky dragons!
-->'''Garble:''' Oh yeah? *snort* What's ''that''?
-->'''Spike:''' RUN AWAY!!!
** When Cerberus arrives at Ponyville:
-->'''Pinkie Pie''': Okay, everypony, follow my lead! [Screams and runs.]
** ''Suited for Success'':
-->'''Twilight Sparkle:''' Now what do we do?
-->'''Fluttershy:''' Um... panic?
-->'''Rainbow Dash:''' That's [[YourAnswerToEverything your answer for everything]]!
* In ''WesternAnimation/CodenameKidsNextDoor'' "Operation L.I.C.E.", the doorway is surrounded by scores of giant lice. Numbuh 2 asks Numbuh 1 what to do.
-->'''Numbuh 1:''' Follow my lead.
-->(scene change later)
-->'''Numbuh 1:''' RUN!
* ''WesternAnimation/ThePenguinsOfMadagascar'', "Cat's Cradle":
-->'''Skipper:''' Kowalski, options.
-->'''Kowalski:''' I suggest a strategic retreat.
-->'''Skipper:''' Elaborate.
-->'''Kowalski:''' It's like running away but manlier.
-->'''Skipper:''' Execute!
* Even though Shaggy and Franchise/ScoobyDoo run away from everything as a RunningGag, around a third of the time it works in their favor.
* From WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}:
-->'''Opera!Bender''': Leela! Leela! Save Fry, save Fry! Godzilla will devour him! As for me [[LameExcuse I must be off to have my doctor check this cough!]] ''runs away''.
-->'''Bender''': I don't recall ever encountering Franchise/{{Godzilla}}, but that is so what I would have done.
* Chuckie Finster, from ''WesternAnimation/{{Rugrats}}'', often tries to convince his friends to follow this trope before they actually get into trouble. Most of the time they should listen to him.
* Sheen Estevez, from TheAdventuresOfJimmyNeutronBoyGenius, despite often being TooDumbToLive, sometimes would recognize when something is just too dangerous or scary, and will suggest his friends to obey this trope. In the spin-off series, PlanetSheen, he even admits that running and yelling when facing danger is his primary ability.
** In the Jimmy Neutron episode "Sheen's Brain" after Sheen becomes an EvilGenius:
-->'''Sheen:''' Don't be alarmed, unless you find it alarming that I'm declaring myself supreme overlord of the town, in which case, ''be very alarmed!''
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Real Life]]
* Stereotypical "Negro" response: [[http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=132849 "Feets, don't fail me now!"]] Website/IMDb says it also shows up in ''Film/Leprechaun4InSpace''.
** It's also a phrase that gamers sometimes say when playing ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'', according to Gamer Jargon, in this case referring to "feats".
* There is a t-shirt slogan to this effect:
--> I am an explosives expert. If you see me running, try to keep up.
** There is another t-shirt slogan along the same lines:
--> I am a nuclear technician. If you see me running, it's already too late.
[[/folder]]

----