->'''Barman:''' ''[greeting Arthur & co. at Milliways]'' It's not unusual for customers to be disoriented after the time journey.\\
'''Trillian:''' "Time journey"? \\
'''Ford Prefect:''' You mean... this isn't the afterlife? \\
'''Barman:''' The afterlife? No, sir. \\
'''Arthur:''' So... we're not dead? \\
'''Barman:''' [[ServileSnarker Sir is most evidently alive, otherwise I would not attempt to serve sir.]]
-->-- ''Series/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy''

For whatever reason, a character is convinced that he's died and is now in the afterlife. If there's someone nearby (especially if they're very attractive), they tend to be taken for an angel. This usually lasts very briefly, until someone tells the not-quite-dead character otherwise, or until they notice something that conflicts with the theory.

This usually happens if the last thing a character remembers is being caught up in some unsurvivable disaster.

Usually a {{comedy trope|s}}. Compare AllJustADream.

Not to be confused with ThisIsntHeaven, when they ''are'' in the afterlife... just [[{{Hell}} not the one they were expecting]]; and ReroutedFromHeaven, where they've gone to the wrong one.
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!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* In ''Manga/{{Saiyuki}}'', Hakkai wakes up in Gojyou's room after passing out from blood loss and remarks that he expected Hell to look more interesting than this. Gojyou then hovers over him and tell him that, no, he's not dead yet.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* In an early ''ComicBook/{{Thorgal}}'' comic, Thorgal falls into a gorge and wakes up days later in a beautiful garden. He's initially convinced that he's in Valhalla, but in reality he's in a magical place BeneathTheEarth.
* In an ArchieComics story, a chemistry lab explosion knocks Mr. Weatherbee out. When he comes to, the first thing he sees is Betty and Veronica in angel costumes for a school play and he assumes he's gone to Heaven. Then he sees Archie in a devil costume and flees in horror.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fan Fiction]]
* A tragic example in ''[[http://www.fimfiction.net/story/50795/the-youth-in-the-garden The Youth in the Garden]]''; a soldier with mortal wounds gets transported from the American Civil War to Equestria and as he lies dying, he sees Fluttershy's garden, her peaceful animals, and Canterlot in the distance and concludes that he is in Heaven, and Fluttershy is an angel. [[spoiler:Moments later, he dies for real.]]
* In the ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'' fanfic "[[Fanfic/ScorpionDisciple Scorpion's Disciple]]", Naruto has a near-death experience and suddenly finds himself in what looks like a sewer. He immediately protests that he wasn't ''that'' bad, before the Kyuubi corrects him that no, this isn't his afterlife.
* In the ''Fanfic/EmpathTheLuckiestSmurf'' story "Smurfing In Heaven", Empath thinks that he's in heaven with all his fellow Smurfs who have died. It turns out to be a magical illusion created by Ares the god of war, who wanted to lure Empath into receiving his gift of godhood.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* In ''Film/{{Servitude}}'', Godfrey passes out drunk and awakens with Josh hovering over him. He thinks Josh to be Jesus.
* In ''Film/TheFriscoKid'', Rabbi Avram (Gene Wilder) passes out after having too many berries at an Indian Bonfire, even though Tommy (Harrison Ford), his gunslinger companion, tells him to ease off. He awakes in a small room, attended by a silent figure in robes, with a large cross on the wall. When he starts to panic, thinking he died, Tommy shows up and tells him that he was brought to a local monastery for help.
* In ''Film/NeverWeaken'' Harold Lloyd, thinking he just committed suicide by way of rigging the trigger of a gun to pull with a string when a door is opened, assumes he's gone to heaven when he opens his eyes and sees an angel. Turns out it's just a statue, and his chair was whisked away by a steel construction girder leaving him dangling hundreds of feet in the air.
* In ''HappyFeet'', Mumble ends up trying to chase down a fishing boat in order to ask the "[[HumansAreCthulhu aliens]]" why they're taking the penguins' fish. Exhausted, he washes up on an Australian shore and is put into a penguin exhibit. He wakes up in a strangely quiet and bright area with other penguins walking around in a mindless state. He asks the nearest one, who's staring blankly into nothingness, where he is. The penguin tells him "You're in Heaven, [[ASpaceOdyssey Dave]]". Then Mumble walks into a [[SomeKindOfForceField glass wall]] and tries to take a swim, only to see strange giants looking at him.
* In ''FieldOfDreams,'' Shoeless Joe Jackson is confused about finding himself in a baseball field after he died.
-->'''Shoeless Joe Jackson''': Hey! Is this heaven?
-->'''Ray Kinsella''': No. It's Iowa.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* In ''Literature/TheRestaurantAtTheEndOfTheUniverse'', after being teleported to the eponymous restaurant in a rather sudden and spectacular way, the protagonists find themselves sprawled on the floor and start morosely monologuing about how they must have all died in an abrupt explosion. Arthur comments: "Not so much an afterlife, more a sort of ''après-vie''."
* A darker example occurs in ''Literature/ReturnFromTheStars''. An astronaut gets lost on a dark planetoid, and the protagonist arrives to rescue him. He finds the astronaut, who has gone insane: he is convinced that he has died and gone to the afterlife, and eventually attacks the hero and runs away, never to be found again.
* Creator/TerryPratchett's ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' novels:
** The Nac Mac Feegle believe that the world ''is'' Heaven, and that getting killed there merely means having to go back to "life" in their former world. Given that the Feegle are ex-Faerie who did considerable dimension hopping, there may be an element of truth to this.
** In ''Discworld/WyrdSisters'', after [[spoiler:Felmet]] finally goes off the deep end, he runs around convinced he's dead, to the confusion of everyone else present (including Death). He even goes around in a bedsheet as Death keeps trying to convince that he's not dead, even when standing on one of the castle battlements. [[spoiler:When he falls, however, Death is waiting at the bottom, for real this time]].
** Also in ''Wyrd Sisters'', the Fool gets stabbed by a dagger, and Margrat clutches him to her bosom in grief. When she realises it was a fake dagger, she asks him if he's dead, to which he replies "I think I must be. I think I'm in paradise."
** Werewolves don't have MagicPants, so when Angua turns back into a human on the Klatchian ship in ''Discworld/{{Jingo}}'', she's naked. She then proceeds to crash into the room of the ailing Prince Khufurah, who says "I believe that I have died and gone to Paradise. Are you a houri?" Angua, characteristically, replies, "[[CallingMeALogarithm I don't have to take that kind of language, thank you]]," and jumps out the ship's window.
* ''Literature/CiaphasCain'': After being teleported in the nick of time from a Necron ship by SpaceMarines, Ciaphas wakes up in a bright light hearing impossibly huge voices, and deduces that he's finally died and is about to meet the Emperor, and gets ready to change the subject of conversation to something other than his behavior as soon as possible. However, as his eyes adjust he realizes he's in an infirmary, and the voices are huge because they're coming from eight-foot-tall SuperSoldiers.
* When Hans wakes up in the American hospital in ''Literature/SixteenThirtyTwo'', he assumes he's dead and the black-skinned human watching over him must be an angel of death.
* In ''[[{{Literature/Twilight}} New Moon]]'', Edward attempts SuicideByCop, thinking that Bella has died. She finds him just before he reveals himself to humans, and he briefly believes that the Volturi have already killed him and that he's in the afterlife with Bella.
* In ''Angels of the Silences'' by Simon Bestwick, two girls are murdered and return as ghosts. They don't realise at first that they are still on earth, and when a bus comes down the road towards them, they initially think it is a bus to the afterlife (it's not.)
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* In one ''Series/{{Scrubs}}'' episode, Ted is on the roof trying to work up the courage to jump, and then Dr Kelos startles him and he falls. He lands in the huge pile of garbage that the Janitor said he could get rid of, but has apparently just been piling up at the back of the hospital.
-->'''Ted:''' Is this heaven?
-->'''Janitor:''' No. It's garbage.
* In an episode of ''Series/OneFootInTheGrave'', Victor falls asleep and awakens in a fog, believing his backyard to be purgatory.
* In ''Series/TensouSentaiGoseiger Vs Series/SamuraiSentaiShinkenger'', Kotoha thinks she is dead after Hyde and Moune explain they are [[OurAngelsAreDifferent Gosei Angels]] and have come to pick her up (they just need her to help everyone fight.)
* In one episode of ''StarTrekTheNextGeneration'', Ro and Geordi are caught in a transporter accident and become insubstantial and invisible to the rest of the crew. Ro assumes they're both dead but Geordi insists on searching for a scientific explanation. [[spoiler:He finds one.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Machinima]]
* In the first season of ''RedVsBlue'', Sarge gets shot in the head and travels to a black-and-white version of Blood Gulch, where he meets Church, who died earlier that season. He asks if Church is an angel, which he says yes to (he's really a ghost, and trying to extort money from Sarge). [[spoiler: Come season 8, we [[RetCon find out]] that there's no such thing as ghosts and possibly no afterlife, and that grayscale Blood Gulch is an armor protocol known as lockdown that occurs when a soldier takes severe damage.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/GoblinsQuest3'', Blount wakes up in a dark room being bit by a wolf, and the first thing he sees is his own tombstone. He doesn't fall for it though, and just remarks that somebody must want him to think he's dead.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Webcomics]]
* In ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'', at one point Klaus rejects the notion of being dead because he hurts too much. Then Gil tells him something, and he declares that it's very unfair -- he must be dead, and he ''still'' hurts.
* When Robot from ''Webcomic/GunnerkriggCourt'' is re-activated, the first thing he sees is [[http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/archive_page.php?comicID=223 Katerina's smiling face]], and he asks: "Am I in heaven? I see an angel before me!" ([[spoiler:Later on, the Court robots' shared mythology has Katerina in the role of an angel figure of sorts.]])
* ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'' had Karl Tagon (already as a [[BrainInAJar head in a jar]]) expressing the opinion that [[http://www.schlockmercenary.com/2010-11-12 he's dead and in heaven]]. [[NorseMythology His version of Heaven]], evidently, involves cute ladies kicking ass while flying robots sing ''Music/RideOfTheValkyries''.
* In ''Webcomic/DocRat'', [[http://www.docrat.com.au/default.asp?thisItem=673 his reaction to coming to with Danielle looking anxiously down on him.]]
* In ''Webcomic/RedsPlanet'', [[http://www.redsplanet.com/comic/rp/ch03/chapter-three-26/ one alien wonders if they really are on an alien planet, they might be dead and in the afterlife.]]
* ''Webcomic/RPGWorld'': Eikre runs off a ship into the ocean and nearly drowns. The last thing he sees is [[http://rpgworldcomic.com/d/20011125.html an angel]]...who turns out to be Reka rescuing him, which he thinks is "just as good."
* In ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'', when Elan awakens in the Empire of Blood, he assumes Malack to be the "lizard grim reaper" and himself and the others with him to be dead. (It doesn't help that the first thing Malack says to him is "I will have the pleasure of escorting you to your final fate.") Haley tries to convince him Malack's just an albino lizardfolk, but Elan remains set in his delusion until the next comic.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' episode "The Death Of Eric Cartman", Cartman assumes that he is a ghost when all of the other boys stop speaking to him.
* In the 1950 ''WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes'' short ''The Hypo-Chondri-Cat'', mice Hubie and Bertie torment the neurotic cat Claude by convincing him he has various ailments, making him pass out at the prospect of surgery, then dressing him in an angel costume for when he wakes up. They finish by surreptitiously attaching a helium balloon to Claude so that he can ascend to "Heaven."
* In the 1961 ''[[Creator/{{Disney}} Walt Disney's]] Wonderful World of Color'' short ''Kids is Kids'', Huey, Dewey and Louie trick their Uncle Donald into thinking an accident with a boulder has killed him and that he's now an angel.
* In the 1952 ''WesternAnimation/HermanAndKatnip'' short ''Mice-Capades'', Herman and his mouse friends concoct an especially elaborate scheme, complete with a vinegar bottle mislabeled as "poison," angel costumes, and a cotton-ball FluffyCloudHeaven, in order to make Katnip think he's dead and has to earn his wings by serving the mice a banquet.
* In one episode of ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'', Abe thinks that he has been euthanized. Meeting a guy dressed as Creator/CharlieChaplin at first confirms this assumption for him, but then he gets quite puzzled upon encountering his whole family at home. He assumes that either Bart or Homer must have run amok.
* WesternAnimation/TheSmurfs purposely evoke this trope on Gargamel in the episode "Heavenly Smurfs" to make him think he's being sent to his final judgment in order for him to change his ways and stop chasing after the Smurfs. However, the charade is revealed when one of the Smurfs posing as a visiting angel loses one of his wings.
* The ''StuntDawgs'' once tricked Fungus into thinking he's dead and needed to relinquish his controlling interest on them to enter heaven instead of hell.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague'' episode "The Savage Time", Wonder Woman rescues an unconscious Steve Trevor. When he wakes up, he assumes he's in Heaven and she is an angel.
[[/folder]]
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