->'''Annie''': ''You dirty bird, how could you? It can't be! Misery Chastain cannot be dead!''
->'''Paul''': ''[...] Misery's spirit is still alive.''
->'''Annie''': ''I don't want her spirit! I want HER! AND YOU MURDERED HER!''
-->-- ''Literature/{{Misery}}''

So there's a character in a work, but he or she ends up leaving the cast roster. Maybe he/she got killed, maybe he/she got PutOnABus, maybe the writers just lost interest in him/her.

But wait, what's this? The fans have begun clamouring for the character's return. The writers, either because they're moved by the dedication to the character or another reason, decide to grant the fans' wish and [[TheBusCameBack bring back the character]]. This is how a character gets saved by the fans.

When this happens to an entire franchise or show, it's been UnCancelled. This may be because the fans told each other to KeepCirculatingTheTapes.

Compare with BreakoutCharacter. May result in an AuthorsSavingThrow.

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* Jeremiah Gottwald from ''Anime/CodeGeass'', who was originally meant to be killed off early in the series. However, he proved popular enough (with both the fans ''and'' the staff) that the creators not only had him survive, but made him a more important character than originally intended.
* Mohammed Avdol from ''Manga/JoJosBizarreAdventure'' seemingly dies at one point, but comes back and it's revealed that [[OnlyAFleshWound the "fatal" attack only grazed him]]. [[spoiler:Ultimately subverted, as he dies for real near the end of the story.]]
* Priss from ''Anime/BubblegumCrisis'' was going to die in Episode 6 and be replaced by Vision, until the fans changed Artmic's mind.
* Vegeta from ''Manga/DragonBallZ'' was supposed to be killed by rampaging Gohan in the climax of his battle on Earth. However, he was so popular that Akira Toriyama decided to spare him up to Namek, where Frieza killed him. ''That'' death was supposed to stick, but he was brought back and survived until he died in one of the most [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome awesome]] sacrifices in history against Majin Buu, and ''that'' was supposed to be his [[KilledOffForReal end]]. And then he was brought back again. This last one is a big source of debate as to whether or not it was a good idea, since his previous sacrifice was so well done that bringing him back seemed to cheapen it.
** Even ''Goku'' got this treatment. Toriyama's original plans had him stepping into the background and leaving Gohan to become TheHero. Obviously, that never happened.
* This is suspected to be the reason that Bunbee of ''Anime/YesPrecure5'' was not only allowed to survive the first season, but had a major role in the next. Being a middle-aged man and therefore unmarketable, he's the only member of any QuirkyMinibossSquad to survive a finale and not join the Cures (although [[Anime/FutariWaPrettyCureSplashStar the Kiryuu twins]] did both and were cute girls, and Toei [[DemotedToExtra hates them]]), but he was surprisingly popular and allowed to live, [[spoiler:and his final HeelFaceTurn is what allows Milky Rose and the mascots to save the titular heroines before the final battle.]]
* ''Anime/GoLion'' had an odd case of this. Shirogane's death in ''Go Lion'' was {{bowdlerized}} to [[DubNameChange Sven]] simply being badly injured and taken to a hospital in ''Anime/{{Voltron}}''. Later on, outcry from Japanese fans of the character prompted the makers of ''Go Lion'' to bring in Shirogane's [[RememberTheNewGuy previously unknown identical twin]] for a few episodes. Since he never died in the American version, the ''Voltron'' writers could say that had Sven simply finished healing up in a bizarre, accidental subversion of the DubInducedPlotHole.
* The original ending of ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamSEED'' would have killed off the entire main cast except for Athrun, but even he would not have gotten out of the finale unscathed. This ending was only averted because of the immense popularity of the Seed characters among the viewers.
** There was still plenty of death in the actual ending...but then ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamSEEDDestiny'' came along and the most popular of the dead characters was retconned back to life. Which was one of the many [[BrokenBase divisive elements]] of the sequel, as that character's HeroicSacrifice had been so well-done in the first place.
* Although [[TheChessmaster Kurama]] was always supposed to join the main cast, [[FragileSpeedster Hiei]] was supposed to be [[Manga/YuYuHakusho Yu Yu Hakusho's]] StarterVillain, but people kept asking when he was going to show up again.
* ''{{Anime/Pokemon}}''
** The famous TerribleTrio of Team Rocket (Jessie, James and Meowth) were being planned to get written out of the anime in ''Best Wishes'' according to [[WordOfGod Kunihiko Yuyama, the anime's director]], but they still had a sizable fanbase, including on the show's staff, and so they're still here.
** To cement they were there to stay, a Japanese podcast during what was advertised as their GrandFinale[[note]]It wasn't and was never going to be, it was actually the big test to see if fans wanted Team Rocket to stay on the show beyond ''Best Wishes''[[/note]] gave fans a telephone poll asking which of the trio's earlier Pokemon they'd like to return. Wobbuffet returned in ''XY''.
** A strange indirect example in ''Anime/PokemonHoopaAndTheClashOfAges'': after the backlash of a second Mewtwo in ''Anime/PokemonGenesectAndTheLegendAwakened'', there was a deliberate effort to imply that every [[OlympusMons Legendary]] that made in appearance in this movie is the same one from their own original movies, including Latios of ''Anime/PokemonHeroes'' who died at that movie's climax. [[UnexplainedRecovery It's never explained how]], but now he's alive and well just in time for the "[[UltimateShowdownOfUltimateDestiny big reunion]]" of the Legendaries.
* [[CloudCuckoolander Sasha Braus]] of ''Manga/AttackOnTitan'' was planned to be a SacrificialLamb very early on in the story, but with her [[SugarWiki/FunnyMoments hilarious introduction]] in the anime, she very quickly became a fan favourite. Seeing the overwhelmingly positive fan reaction she caused, the idea was scrapped in favour of keeping her on as PluckyComicRelief. She's still alive... [[AnyoneCanDie For now]].

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''Franchise/{{Batman}}'' provided an interesting example of this: Fans were called on to decide the fate of a key character and voted via 1-900 number. [[spoiler: They voted 5,343-5,271 to kill off Jason Todd's Robin. Jason would later be resurrected by DC, meaning he was [[InvertedTrope saved by the Editor]]]].
** Played straight with Stephanie Brown, the Spoiler, who had multiple fan groups dedicated to having her either honored or returned. Within a few years, she was back and eventually gained the Batgirl mantle and a solo series. After getting the [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome Brother Chuck]] treatment by the ComicBook/New52 in 2011, she eventually returned to the comics in 2014.
* Similar to Stephanie Brown, [[ComicBook/SpiderMan Mary Jane Watson]] has several times been written out, killed off, and magically divorced. Each time she has returned because, to put it simply, they are ''the'' FanPreferredCouple. It also helps when the co-creator of the web-head continues to keep them married in his own Spidey project

[[folder:Fan Fic]]
* Fan outcry is what spared Zander and Scoria from [[AbsurdlyHighStakesGame Nezumi's fatal Colony Raiders game]] in ''FanFic/NepetaQuest2011''.

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* Scrat was originally going to be killed off after his brief scene in the opening of the first ''WesternAnimation/IceAge'' movie, but the overwhelming response to advance footage led the filmmakers to add more scenes with him.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* [[spoiler:Agent Coulson]] in ''Film/{{The Avengers|2012}}'' got this. The fans started a project called [[spoiler:Coulson Lives]] in denial of his death, insisting that he was simply ''too awesome to die''. They got his actor on board, and eventually, he really did come back ''[[Series/AgentsOfSHIELD in his own TV show]]''.
* Darth Maul from the ''Star Wars'' franchise survived [[RasputinianDeath getting cut in half and falling down a]] BottomlessPit due to how popular he was despite the little screentime he received outside of [[OneSceneWonder his duel against Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon]]. [[spoiler: Though he finally dies for good at the hands of Obi-Wan in ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsRebels''.]]

* Pinocchio from ''Literature/TheAdventuresOfPinocchio'', alongside ExecutiveMeddling. He was going to die hanged, but a lot of children sent letters to the newspaper to revive Pinocchio, and the editor of Giornale per il bambini made Collodi add more chapters and thus Pinocchio has its famous happy ending.
* Possibly the [[OlderThanTelevision oldest example]] of this is Literature/SherlockHolmes.
* ''{{Literature/Misery}}'' is one of the most known fictional examples. And surely the [[NightmareFuel scariest one]]. Paul Sheldon has been writing a series of romance novels based on the exploits of the Victorian airhead Misery Chastain for years, and loathes the character, so he wrote a final book which ended with Misery dying of childbirth. Unfortunately, he's badly injured in a car crash and left crippled and in the not-so-capable hands of the [[TheSociopath sociopathic]] BattleaxeNurse[=/=]LoonyFan Annie Wilkes, and [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HrRSo3a1ZYU when she finds out about Misery's character death]], Annie threatens his life unless he writes a brand new novel which brings Misery back to life.
* Referenced in the ''Literature/ThursdayNext'' books - in this case, it isn't that the fans want Emperor Zhark to not be KilledOffForReal, but Zhark himself visits the author from the fictional universe and... persuades him not to do it.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Helo from ''Series/BattlestarGalactica2003'' was only supposed to appear in the pilot episode and get left behind on Caprica. Fan response to the character ensured that he began a main character in the series, to the point of being part of one of show's most important [[StoryArc Story Arcs]].
* In the second season of ''Series/{{Bones}}'', Camille "Cam" Saroyan, Bones's and the squints' new boss at the Jefferson, was poisoned by SerialKiller Howard Epps. She was originally intended to die from the poison, but the fans and showrunners alike loved her, so she survived the incident and went on to remain a main character for the rest of the 12-season series.
* Spike from ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'' was going to last only five episodes, but proved so popular that he was spared and went on to become the show's BreakoutCharacter.
** This actually happened quite a few times on ''Buffy'', because Joss Whedon is an evil bastard. Several characters were going to appear for a few episodes and then die, but were instead saved (Oz and Faith are the shining examples), some were killed off much later than intended (Joyce Summers and Tara), some were even revived from the dead. Fan reaction to the characters was the deciding factor every single time.
* ''Series/CriminalMinds'' had two straight cases of this and an inversion. During the sixth season, JJ is forced to take a promotion at the Pentagon to make her boss look better, and is written out of the series as a main character, only making a few guest appearances, while a new BAU member, Ashley Seaver, was introduced to take her place. Later in the same season, Emily Prentiss was given an arc revolving around a backstory and ArchEnemy that, until then, was not hinted to exist at all; this arc ended with her faking her death and going into hiding, also being written out of the show. These were both cases of ExecutiveMeddling done by the studio rather than the writers themselves: in order to budget the spinoff series ''Suspect Behavior'', actress AJ Cook (JJ) was dismissed at the beginning of the season, and then Paget Brewster (Prentiss) had her number of episodes shortened, with Rachel Nichols (Seaver) serving as a cheaper replacement due to being new to the show. However, the studio received a staggering number of complaints from the fans about this, and as a result, once Season 7 began (and ''Suspect Behavior'' failed after one season), JJ and Prentiss were both brought back, and Seaver (who was a huge case of ReplacementScrappy for JJ) was written out.
* Barnabas Collins from ''Series/DarkShadows'' was brought in only as a temporary villain to attempt a revival of the show's ratings. He became incredibly popular with fans, went from {{Jerkass}} to [[TookALevelInBadass badass]] (or sometimes {{Woobie}} or even JerkassWoobie) and is essentially now the face of all permutations of the franchise.
* Methos from ''Series/{{Highlander}}: The Series'' was only supposed to be around for part of season 3, but the fans liked him so much he was kept.
* Inverted by ''Series/{{Lost}}''. [[spoiler: Nikki and Paolo]] were loathed by fans. The writers were very much aware of this, and soon had them killed off with extreme prejudice.
** Desmond Hume and Benjamin Linus were only going to appear in three episodes each. The audience reacted so well to their characters that they were promoted to main cast from Season 3 onwards.
* During Season 5 of ''Series/MissionImpossible'', the producers tried to write out the strongman character Willy (who had been around since Season 1 but was increasingly out of place on the cerebral show) and replace him with a doctor named Doug, played by Sam Elliott. Fan outcry resulted in Doug going away and Willy not only remaining but getting a bigger role.
* According to rumors, ''Franchise/PowerRangers'' have tried to off Tommy in the same fashion as his predecessor [[Series/KyoryuSentaiZyuranger Burai]]. However, the combination of this trope and the fact that Power Rangers is LighterAndSofter most of the time, they just depowered Tommy, enabling him to come back [[GotTheCallOnSpeedDial many, many times]]. This was actually used to try and save Burai, but Toei refused, trying to instill the aesop of "Even heroes CAN die."
* Carson Beckett from ''Series/StargateAtlantis''. So much that fans [[TorchesAndPitchforks mounted a protest outside the studio]] near Vancouver, BC and ended up making the local news. And it worked.
* Klaus from ''Series/TheVampireDiaries'' was initially supposed to be a temporary villain appearing in a handful of episodes, but due to positive fan response he was kept on the series long term, receiving a huge amount of character development, and becoming integral to most of the show's storylines. He was eventually granted [[Series/TheOriginals his own spinoff series]].
* According to Creator/MishaCollins, his character Castiel from ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'' was only originally slated to appear in six episodes early on in season 4, before being killed off. But such was his popularity that he has remained a constant part of the show for the past five years, with Collins being promoted to series regular and developing as much of a devoted following within the fanbase as the show's actual lead actors.
** Though Abbadon was always planned to come back in season 9, after Jim Michaels announced via twitter that they were planning to [[TheOtherDarrin recast her]] due to her meatsuit's destruction in the season 8 finale, fans immediately began a campaign to get original actress Alaina Huffman back, citing her performance as the reason the character had become [[EnsembleDarkhorse unexpectedly popular]] in the first place. Eventually the writers relented and came up with a HandWave ritual that restored Abbadon's original body, allowing Alaina to continue playing the character.

[[folder:Role-Playing Games]]
* ''Roleplay/DinoAttackRPG'': If it were not for her popularity and demand for her return, Zenna would have spent the rest of her days in a coma. Instead, she managed to [[TheBusCameBack catch a bus]] and arrive back [[BackForTheFinale in time for the finale]].

[[folder:Video Games]]
* If he hadn't been so wildly popular, [[Franchise/SonicTheHedgehog Shadow]] would still be dead by now. He showed up in ''VideoGame/SonicAdventure2'' as a CriminalDoppelganger and became a DragonWithAnAgenda to [[BigBad Dr. Eggman.]] He was also a badass who pulled a HeelFaceTurn and sacrificed himself to [[HeroicSacrifice save the world.]] Then, Sega [[VideoGame/SonicHeroes brought him back]] and [[BrokenBase split the fanbase again.]]
* Axel from the ''Franchise/KingdomHearts'' series was supposed to die at the end of ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsII'''s prologue. But he had a lot of fans (including many members of the development team) and he wound up surviving and taking a [[DemotedToExtra small role]] in the main storyline of the game.
** And then a [[TookALevelInBadass big]] role in ''VideoGame/{{Kingdom Hearts 3D|DreamDropDistance}}''. [[spoiler:As in, Keyblade-wielder big.]]
* In ''VideoGame/BaldursGate'', Bioware originally planned for [[spoiler:Imoen to become BrainwashedAndCrazy due to Irenicus' torture in ''Shadows of Amn'', forcing CHARNAME to MercyKill her.]] When this information was leaked, fan outcry convinced them to spare [[spoiler:her]].
* Once fans of ''VideoGame/{{Tekken}}'' heard that Kazuya had been killed in the third game's backstory (the game hadn't really come out yet at this point, mind you), clamors for his restoration apparently began very quickly, very strongly. Ultimately, Namco acceded to this demand by revealing Kazuya's continued existence in Eddy's ending for the Playstation version. Then he returns full blown in ''[=Tekken=] 4'' and has been a mainstay again.
** The only reason why Jun Kazama appeared in ''Tekken Tag Tournament 2'' was because fans constantly asked the series creator Katsuhiro Harada about it. She remains much beloved despite the fact the only main series game she was in was ''Tekken 2''(though she was very popular in the first ''Tekken Tag Tournament'' game.), even being replaced by her niece [[ReplacementScrappy Asuka]]
* ''VideoGame/MegaManX'' was going to be the villain of the first ''VideoGame/MegaManZero'' game instead of a [[CloningBlues copy]]. This concept was scrapped during the last month before release because the developers thought X becoming a villain and being killed by Zero wouldn't sit well with the kids who played his games and thought he was a hero.
* The end of ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess'' has Midna return to the Twilight Realm and [[spoiler:break the mirror of Twilight so the portal can never be opened again]]. But Eiji Aonuma was surprised by the fans' love of her, and responded in an interview that if there is a sequel she may somehow come back. She eventually did came back, though only in [[VideoGame/HyruleWarriors non-canon]] [[VideoGame/SuperSmashBros games]].
* ''VideoGame/{{Skullgirls}}'' may be considered an exemplary example of this. During the process of developing the first DLC character, [[CuteMonsterGirl Squigly]], the ''Skullgirls'' team was laid off by their original studio, [[DevelopmentHell meaning they no longer had the budget to pay the cost for developing her]]. Hoping not to let their work go to waste, they went to the fans for assistance, starting up an Indiegogo campaign in February 2013 to raise $150,000 in donations to fund the development of Squigly. Not only had they reached the goal amount ''in a single day'', the donations kept coming in until the end of the campaign a month later, with the total amount being ''[[UpToEleven more than five times that of the intended goal]]''. With $829,829 raised as the final number, the ''Skullgirls'' team will not only use it to fund Squigly, but also four more DLC characters (two of whom will be fan voted), story modes and stages for each of those characters, background tracks for each of those stages, and eight GagDub voice packs.
* The Materials of the ''VideoGame/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaAsPortable'' games were {{Evil Twin}}s of Nanoha, Fate, and Hayate who were supposed to have been destroyed in the first game, with the remnants of the [[DarkIsEvil Darkness of the Book of Darkness]] disappearing with them to show that they were KilledOffForReal. However, the concepts of TheSpock Nanoha, BloodKnight Fate, and CardCarryingVillain Hayate was such a hit with the fans that, not only were they revived for the sequel and given a starring role, but they were also incorporated into other parts of the ''Nanoha'' franchise.
* Sega's ''VideoGame/{{Yakuza}}'' series was modestly successful in the west, but not enough that Sega put a lot of stock in the series outside of Japan. When the zombie-themed GaidenGame ''Dead Souls'' flopped, Sega appeared to pull the plug on ''Yakuza'' in the west, quietly taking down the English-language website and remaining suspiciously silent about the localization of ''Yakuza 5''. When Sony polled players on what game they wanted to see released most, ''Yakuza 5'' topped the list, so they localized ''5'' and released it as a digital title. Noticing the hype leading up to the release of ''5'', Sega announced that they would localize ''Yakuza 0'' and release it on-disc. With faith in the series outside of Japan restored, Sega also announced international releases of ''Yakuza Kiwami'' and ''Yakuza 6''.

* When the guru of ''Webcomic/KoanOfTheDay'' was [[http://www.koanoftheday.com/37/ put on trial]], fans were asked to tweet to save or kill him. In this case, most fans voted him dead!
* Subverted in ''[[Webcomic/EightBitTheater 8-Bit Theater]]''. Not only does Brian make it clear that [[spoiler:Black Belt]] is dead forever, he does so in a thinly veiled, particularly spiteful TakeThat against his fans demanding his return.
* In ''Webcomic/CollegeRoomiesFromHell'', during the Blue Mushroom arc, Dave's soul was stolen by the devil. Fan outcry on the forum was so great that the cartoonist invented the Miraculous Shotgun in order to save him.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* Mottis, the creator of ''WebAnimation/BunnyKill'', has stated this to be one of the possible ways [[spoiler:Ruby]] can return.
* Creator/BradJones created WebVideo/EightiesDan as a one-off gag for his ''Caligula'' ''[[WebVideo/TheCinemaSnob Cinema Snob]]'' review, but fans really took to him, and he ended up appearing in an episode of ''WebVideo/BradTries''. 80's Dan has his own show now.
* WebVideo/TheNostalgiaCritic was originally [[spoiler: retired by being sent to [[WebVideo/ToBoldlyFlee The Plot Hole]] to stabilize the universe]] and IRL, allow creator Doug Walker to focus on other projects that he'd wanted to do for years. However WebVideo/DemoReel's reception was... [[RuleOfCautiousEditingJudgement complicated]], good enough views (mostly from women and queer fans) to carry on but Doug admitted in the DVDCommentary that the site needed more money so he had to do reviews again. This has lead to plenty of BrokenBase, as Doug wasn't exactly thrilled with having to return to the Nostalgia Critic, and many fans feel that at times this shows.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Angel (Experiment 624), a character from ''WesternAnimation/LiloAndStitchTheSeries'', was only intended to be a one episode character. However, once the executives realized she was one of the most popular characters, they brought her back for the last episode and gave her a small scene of her kicking Leroy clone patookie in the GrandFinale ''WesternAnimation/LeroyAndStitch''. She even became a major character of the franchise thanks to [[Anime/{{Stitch}} the succeeding anime]]. Somewhat doubles as an AuthorsSavingThrow, as her episode put the character on a [[PutOnABusToHell bus to Hell]], which goes completely against the [[BrokenAesop core theme of]] ''[[TrueCompanions 'ohana]]'' [[BrokenAesop that the]] ''Franchise/LiloAndStitch'' [[BrokenAesop franchise is built on]].
* Kenny from ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' after he was supposed to be KilledOffForReal. Additionally, Kyle was originally the one to be killed off.
* Waspinator from ''WesternAnimation/BeastWars'', who was slated for death to make room for a [[MerchandiseDriven new toy]]. Online popularity saved him, [[ButtMonkey or alternatively]], ''[[NiceJobBreakingItHero prolonged his suffering.]]''
** Optimus Prime was killed off in the [[WesternAnimation/TransformersTheMovie movie]] to make way for [[MerchandiseDriven new toys]]. Fans were saddened and outraged to a level that no one at Hasbro could've predicted. By the end of season 3, the writers specifically made a two-part episode in order to bring Optimus back to life, though his toy was only available via mail-order (at least, that's what Hasbro wanted you to think, as his toy was actually still being shipped to stores due to its popularity).
*** This outrage also saved Duke from being killed off in ''WesternAnimation/GIJoeTheMovie''. Originally, Duke was to be killed when Serpentor speared him in the heart. After the backlash against Prime's death, the audio was redubbed to specifically say he was put in a coma, and new dialogue at the end of the film mentions him awakening from it.
* Princess Luna in ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' was originally only to last to the end of the pilot and [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome never be seen again]], hence her absence from the rest of Season 1. For the next year, fans took a massive interest in the younger princess, and she finally returned in Season 2. She has ironically gone on to get ''far'' more screen time than her elder sister, as fans would have to wait all the way through most of Season 7, as well as several more episodes starring Princess Luna, before Princess Celestia would get to share the spotlight with Luna and Starlight Glimmer.
* ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'' episode "Three Kings" contains a parody of ''Misery'' in which Stewie obliges Brian to bring the character of Snuggly Jeff back from the dead.
* The [[EvilKnockoff Rowdyruff]] [[SpearCounterpart Boys]] from ''WesternAnimation/ThePowerpuffGirls''. Intended to only be one shot villains. But the fans loved them so the writers eventually brought them back in the fifth season.
* Not saved from death, but [[DeadpanSnarker Noah]], [[DoggedNiceGuy Cody]], [[HomeschooledKids Ezekiel]] and [[SmallNameBigEgo Tyler]] were all brought back for ''WesternAnimation/TotalDramaWorldTour'' because of their major EnsembleDarkHorse status.
* In ''WesternAnimation/XMen'', Morph was the SacrificialLamb. The only X-Man on the team but not in the opening credits, he died in the first episode to show that the series played hardball. However, during his short time in the show he became so beloved that we find out in the second season that Mr. Sinister saved him but put him under MoreThanMindControl. He became an important part of the whole year's MythArc, and made a few appearances after that.