[[quoteright:350:[[Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Terrifying-Rescuer_6774.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:It's OK, Sarah, [[Creator/ArnoldSchwarzenegger he's]] [[HeelFaceTurn on your side this time]].]]
The DistressedDamsel and/or [[DistressedDude Dude]] is sitting in their cell with head in hands, or hanging by a thread from a cliff, when suddenly, the door is broken down, or a head peeps over the cliff edge. Joy turns to terror as he or she realizes it's TheDragon (who unbeknownst to them has made a HeelFaceTurn,) an EldritchAbomination, FluffyTheTerrible, a KillerRobot... and so on.

Usually it'll only be temporary until someone fills the rescuee in on current events, although it may lead to ComplainingAboutRescuesTheyDontLike. Sometimes it'll turn out they actually ''are'' in worse danger now such as with a VillainousRescue or DestructiveSavior.

A DarkMessiah can be this on a global scale.

Compare StockholmSyndrome, UnwantedRescue, EmbarrassingRescue.
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!!Examples:

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[[folder: Anime & Manga ]]

* In ''Manga/MagiLabyrinthOfMagic'', Aladdin's djinn, Uugo, tends to scare the crap out of whoever he's rescuing or protecting, what with him being a headless giant and all.
* ''Anime/TenchiMuyoGXP'': Protagonist Seina is only rescued from the SpacePirate Tarant Shank (KnightOfCerebus[[note]][[VillainDecay you'd think, anyway]][[/note]]. and KnifeNut) by [[BettyAndVeronica the Betty]] of his LoveDodecahedron, Kiriko -- [[LetsGetDangerous covered in the blood of every mook between her and Seina]]. His first reaction is terror -- which upsets her, and Seina spends most of his screentime in the rest of the episode upset at himself ''for'' being scared of his childhood friend[=/=]crush when she'd just saved his life.
* Done a lot in ''Manga/OnePiece''. We have [[TheBerserker Monster Point Chopper]] in the Enies Lobby arc, inadvertently saving many of his TrueCompanions while also trying to kill them. Aokiji saves Robin in her backstory, while killing his own ally right in front of her. Crocodile gets Luffy out of Impel Down and -- while that had a reason; he wanted out too -- he later takes blows for Luffy and orders Mr. 1 to do the same as they attempt to rescue Ace. This is partially because he's done a... well, a "Heel Neutral Turn," and partly because Luffy just has that much charisma.
* The [[TheDreaded Black Swordsman]] of ''Manga/{{Berserk}}''. A tall, hulking man with one eye, heaps of scars, a mean scowl, a bad attitude, and a {{BFS}} almost as thick and tall as he is. Fortunately, he's actually Guts, our AntiHero protagonist. Unfortunately, whether he cares if you live or die depends on if it's [[HeroWithAnFInGood the beginning of the manga]] or [[DefrostingIceKing the latter of it]].
* There's a brief moment of this in ''Anime/FullMoonOSagashite'' in episode 40. The guy that went into the canyon to look after Mitsuki unintentionally scared her and caused Takuto to take human form to attack him. Luckily, the mix-up was quickly cleared up.

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[[folder: Comics ]]

* A ''JusticeLeagueUnlimited'' comic has Blue Devil suffer a HeroicBSOD when he tries to save a child who's too scared of his demonic appearance to go with him. Dr. Fate tries to cheer him up by telling him that ''{{Superman}}'' actually had the same problem once, while trying to save a girl from a flaming plane wreck.
* In one ''ComicBook/{{Hellblazer}}'' story, a little girl is kidnapped by a demon and kept caged inside his body. John is allowed to see her, and as he's being removed, reaches towards her yelling [[BigDamnHeroes "We're coming to get you!"]] and wondering why she's backing away as far as the cage allows. [[FridgeHorror Only later does he realize]] that what the girl saw was [[WombLevel an indistinct shape covered in slime]] reaching towards her yelling [[NightmareFuel "We're coming to get you!"]]
* In the ''{{New 52}}'', Superman has a sad flashback of a time when he saved a little boy from getting hit by a truck. The boy was utterly terrified of him and struggled to get out of his arms. The neighborhood immediately forms an angry mob and attack him, and he is forced to flee to avoid harming them.

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[[folder: Film - Animated ]]

* ZigZagged in the original ''{{Shrek}}'' movie: at first, Fiona is not happy about being rescued by an ogre, but then comes to like Shrek. Then a gang of a handsome RobinHood-wannabes attack them, ostensibly with intent of saving Fiona from the "beast", but she dislikes him even more than she disliked Shrek. However, instead of calling for help, she [[LetsGetDangerous dispatches all the attackers herself]], leaving Shrek awed.
* In ''Disney/{{Tarzan}}'', Jane falls off a great height as she is chased by baboons and Tarzan catches her. She looks up at the half-naked wild man grabbing her by the waist and lets out a scream.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Film - Live Action ]]

* In ''Film/TheTerminator'', Sarah Connor is understandably freaked out when a guy pulls out a sawed-off shotgun in the Tech Noir and starts shooting. It's only after the bullets have stopped and he's hauled her outside that he explains that he was saving her from the [[KillerRobot hulking dude]] he shot.
** In [[Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay the sequel]], Sarah's in the middle of escaping the institution holding her when that same hulking dude steps out of the elevator and approaches her. She remembers how [[MadeOfIron impossible it was to kill]] last time and she has no weapons capable of stopping him. She's trapped between the hospital guards and ''it'' until it holds out its hand to her and says "ComeWithMeIfYouWantToLive" and her son shows up and vouches for it.
* Subverted in ''StarWars Episode IV: ANewHope''.
--> '''Princess Leia''': Aren't you a little short for a Stormtrooper?
--> '''Luke Skywalker''': Huh? Oh! The uniform... I'm Luke Skywalker, I'm here to rescue you.
--> '''Leia''': You're who?
* During ''TheGreatRaid'' (both the film and RealLife) some of the prisoners did not recognize the uniforms of their rescuers, and had to be coaxed out of their huts. One even hid until after the raid was over.
* In ''Film/TheAmazingSpiderMan'', Spider-Man tries to save a boy from a burning car, and has to take off his mask to prove that he's not a monster.
* In ''Film/AdventuresInBabysitting'', Chris's car gets a flat, leaving her stranded on the side of the expressway. She is understandably frightened when a huge truck pulls up behind her and a hulking figure with a HookHand gets out. But this turns out to be tow-truck driver "Handsome" John Pruitt, who offers her a free tow to Dawson's Garage.

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[[folder: Literature ]]

* Early in ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'', Perrin is captured by Whitecloaks and sentenced to execution. When Lan violently bursts into his tent and cuts down his guards, Perrin inadvertently tries to scream a warning to his captors.
* In Charles Stross's ''[[TheLaundrySeries The Atrocity Archives]]'', Mo describes being rescued from terrorists by a SWAT team:
-->''You ever had two guys point assault rifles at your head, so close you could see the grooves on the inside of the barrels? You just lie there very still and try very hard not to look threatening.''
* In ''[[TabletopGame/ForgottenRealms Wywern's Spur]]'' an old adventurer told the stories of Cole Wyvernspur. One of the stories was about the carpenter's daughter who refused the mad red wizard and then was kidnapped and imprisoned by him. Cole who jumped to the rescue "looked so fierce when he arrived that Bette mistook him for one of Yawataht's minions and smacked him on the head with a hammer". In another Cole entered a hydra's lair unarmed and when he left a hour later, the monster was "everywhere" -- in pieces. [[spoiler:He was turned into a ''big'' wyvern.]]
* Geralt of Rivia recounts in ''TheWitcher: Literature/TheLastWish'' how his first heroic act was to rescue a teenaged farm girl and her father from a group of bandits. His brutal attack caused the father to flee in terror with the surviving bandits and the girl to throw up on him and pass out. He's been a lot more cynical about stories of heroic deeds ever since.

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[[folder: Live Action Television ]]

* In the ''{{Bones}}'' episode "The Woman in the Car", where the child Booth was rescuing was terrified until Booth told him his father's code word (Paladin).
* The titular ''Series/{{Dexter}}'', a SerialKillerKiller, rescues Lumen, a young woman who has been subjected to horrific torture and rape by one of his victims. As she first sees him tying up and stabbing her captor, she is understandably spooked.
* In ''Series/DoctorWho'', this is Cass' reaction in "Night of the Doctor" upon realising what species the Eighth Doctor is from. Despite not fighting in the Time War himself (thus far), his [[HowTheMightyHaveFallen people's actions]] have damaged their reputation [[FallenHero so badly]] that [[spoiler: Cass elects to ''die'' rather than be saved by a Time Lord]].
* In ''Series/{{Sherlock}}'', Moriarty is revealed to have terrified a pair of kidnapped children with a double of Sherlock, in order to cast suspicion on Sherlock when the children begin screaming in his presence.

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[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]

* Thanks to Disquiet, any [[TabletopGame/PrometheanTheCreated Promethean]] attempting to help mortals turns into one of these.

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[[folder: Video Games ]]

* In ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil4'', Ashley attacks Leon when he first comes through the door. He's actually a fairly friendly-looking guy, but he's a heavily armed stranger who comes in the door with his gun drawn, isn't dressed like a cop or a government agent, and immediately calls her by name. Not to mention that a former American agent was involved in her kidnapping, though she may or may not be aware of it. Understandably, she assumes Leon is with her kidnappers.
* In ''VideoGame/StarWarsTheOldRepublic'', Light Sided Imperial players, particularly Sith, will often evoke this reaction in civilians, Imperial personnel and even ''Republic'' troops that they come to the aid of.
* ''Franchise/BioShock''
** In first ''VideoGame/BioShock1'', rescuing a Little Sister involves first killing her Big Daddy guardian and then finding her where she's trying to hide from you in absolute terror.
** In ''VideoGame/BioShockInfinite'', Elizabeth is initially terrified by the sight of the heavily armed Booker, an understandable reaction given that she'd been locked alone in her tower for her entire life and that he'd just crashed through the ceiling. After accepting his offer to help her escape, her ease turns right back to terror again, after witnessing how [[OneManArmy brutally effective]] Booker is at killing people.
* In ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'', if spared in the first game, Rana Thanoptis has this reaction to discovering that Shepard was the person shooting their way through the Blue Suns on Korlus. After thanking them for the rescue, she states her intention to leave as quickly as possible, since she was forced to outrun a nuclear explosion the last time they met.
** Shepard's initial reaction to Legion, after realising that a ''Geth'' not only sniped the Husk that was [[StabTheScorpion about to attack them]], but more importantly, is able to speak and knows who they are.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* In an episode of ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsTheCloneWars'', Obi-wan is disguised as a slave trader, and the alien he's trying to rescue is terrified of him until he removes his helmet.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/BatmanBeyond'' episode "Heroes", the hero [[MagmaMan Magma]] terrifies a little girl when he rescues her from kidnappers.
** In the episode "Unmasked", Batman tries to pull a kid out of a burning building, but the boy keeps crawling away and accuses him of being a monster. Batman has no choice but to remove his mask to make the boy take his hand.
* In an episode of ''WesternAnimation/StreetFighter'', Blanka rescues a drowning Japanese businessman. Upon seeing his savior, the man yells "Kaibutsu!" ("Monster!") and flees. This is part of Blanka's ongoing characterization of identity struggle caused by his forced mutation (the cartoon draws from the plot of the ''Film/StreetFighter'' film).
* ''WesternAnimation/BatmanTheBraveAndTheBold'': In "Hail the Tornado Tyrant!", two small children have this reaction to the Tornado Champion when he recues them from a burning building, and run screaming into their parents arms.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Real Life ]]

* There have been many cases of kids, raised with StrangerDanger, getting lost but then hiding from their rescuers. One case had the child sighted within a couple hours, but it was a few ''days'' before the child was finally rescued, because he kept fleeing.
* A fully suited up [[EmergencyServices firefighter]] can be very scary to children if they aren't prepared ahead of time, which has lead to some children hiding from their rescuer. [[ClassTrip Field trips]] and open houses at the fire station include introducing kids to a firefighter in the whole kit to help avert this.
* Imagine being from the developing world with no real knowledge of modern science. Now add foreign soldiers in your homeland. Imagine being injured or critically ill, then having these soldiers run up in their massive body armor with their automatic weapons. They speak in a language you don't understand, then an interpreter from your nation tells you that these foreign soldiers intend to help you. Then they begin to cut away at your clothing and bring out medical equipment you may or may not be familiar with at all. This was a regular feature of US and NATO military operations of the last quarter century, where aid for civilians was considered standard operating procedure for medics and medical units. In Afghanistan, this could even go as far as responding to an emergency by throwing emergency patients and a relative into an evacuation hospital escorted by Apache attack helicopters and taking them to a mobile hospital with a ''surgical team'' hundreds of miles away. A CombatMedic won't let a little thing like hundreds of miles of mountains filled with the Taliban prevent them from treating a patient.
** Mike Wasdin, a SEAL sniper, recounts a story how a team he was on saw a child whose foot was gangrenous was beyond local help, but not modern medicine. His team couldn't reveal their location, so they bust into the kid's house in ''Mogadishu'' in the middle of the night, rounded up every terrified occupant at gunpoint, put them on the ground and bound their hands and eyes, then treated the kid before releasing everyone in the house. The next night, the inhabitants calmly went along with it. The third night, they left out what meager tea and food they could spare for the team.
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