->''"Hi, welcome to the future. San Dimas, California, 2688. And I'm telling you, it's great here! The air is clean, the water's clean, even the dirt... it's clean! Bowling averages are way up, mini-golf scores are way down. And we have more excellent water slides than any other planet we communicate with. I'm telling you, this place is great!"''
-->-- '''Rufus''', ''Film/BillAndTedsExcellentAdventure''

A trope OlderThanYouThink, that of a story that informs us the future will not be full of doomsday scenarios or nightmarish dystopias, but in fact the time when all troubles will be behind us. Or, at the very least, the future will hold less burdens than that of the past.

It could also be more personalized, where the characters we've been following (or at least some of them) can at least look forward to a better tomorrow.

This is somewhat of a [[CyclicTrope generational/cyclical trope]] in some ways: ScienceFiction in the optimistic post-WWII era in the U.S. featured easy travel to other planets, flying cars, the triumph of democracy and universally-recognized human rights, etc. Around the late '60s and '70s, dystopic scenarios became increasingly common, however usually there was a hero who successfully undermined the dictators or exposed the dark secret that deceived the people, and the dystopia was overcome (''Literature/LogansRun'', ''Film/SoylentGreen'' possibly with the hero's publicly-proclaimed end reveal; later, ''Film/TheRunningMan''). Around the '80s and '90s dystopian {{Crapsack World}}s would often stay dystopian {{Crapsack World}}s, with the drama centering more on heroes (or {{Anti Hero}}es) dealing with life as best they can and maybe accomplishing some bit of good in the process.

This trope is especially popular in religions. Most of them promise some sort of salvation or enlightenment for their followers if they just keep on believing in the SecondComing or whatever positive future might be coming.

Politicians also love to promise a better future when they get elected. No RealLife examples are needed.

Compare IWantMyJetpack and WorldHalfFull, where someone longs for this to be true and where a person or group of people try to [[InvokedTrope invoke]] this respectively. GrassIsGreener likewise can deal with characters and their delusion that that place or time that isn't now and here is always going to be better when they get there.

Contrast OlderIsBetter and NostalgiaFilter. Also related to SocietyMarchesOn.



[[folder: Anime and Manga]]
* "Fate" in ''[[Manga/MagiLabyrinthOfMagic Magi: Labyrinth Of Magic]]'' is a force that moves the world towards a better future for people in general. However, individual people can really get screwed over by Fate and suffer horribly. The main bad guys like to track these people down and give them the ability to fight Fate--to the detriment of everyone around them.
* Practically said word-for-word by Lelouch in the second-to-last episode of ''Anime/CodeGeass''. Whilst Charles zi Britannia sought the past, and Schneizel el Britannia seeks to preserve the present, Lelouch seeks the future.

[[folder: Comic Books]]
* ComicBook/{{Transmetropolitan}}'s Spider Jerusalem, despite being a violently cynical misanthrope, genuinely believes this. He just wishes that [[IWantMyJetpack it would happen FASTER.]]
-->'''Spider:''' ''The future is an inherently good thing.'' And we move into it one winter at a time. Things get better one winter at a time. If you're going to celebrate anything, then have a drink on this: The world is, generally and on balance, a better place to live this year than it was last year.

[[folder: Literature]]
* Many fairy tales revolve around poor people whose lives turn out better afterwards.
* In ''Literature/ThePendragonAdventure'' books the original version of Third Earth, which is Earth in the 51st century, is practically perfect. It's an idealistic paradise where the humans are entirely happy, and all of knowledge and history is easily available.
%%* ''Literature/AndromedaNebula'' is the paramount example of this in the Soviet ScienceFiction literature, and it also [[FollowTheLeader started an enduring trend]] that many later novels followed, e.g. ''Literature/NoonTwentySecondCentury''.
* ''Literature/FromTheNewWorld'': After the CrapsaccharineWorld's society goes to bust, [[spoiler:Saki and Satoru]] know that their future will be better for their child.
* {{Discussed}} in part three of ''Literature/MondayBeginsOnSaturday'': Privalov {{time travel}}s into the ''fictional'' future of mankind, as imagined by his contemporary sci-fi writers, and finds it split by a giant wall in two halves: the "World of Humane Imagination" (falling squarely under this trope) and the GrimDark "World of Fear of the Future".
* Averted in the third book of ''Literature/TheIndianInTheCupboard'', when Patrick, a boy from the modern day, tells Ruby Lou, a cowgirl from the Wild West, about the future. He tells her all about the great improvements in medicine, long distance communication, automobiles... but then she asks if there are any drawbacks and he admits the future has its own share of problems: pollution, overpopulation, and nuclear weapons.

[[folder: Live-Action TV]]
* A central premise of the ''Franchise/StarTrek'' franchise is that technology and science makes life better. There's no racism either; humans are finally getting along with each other.
* In season 4 of ''Series/{{Fringe}}'', Peter Bishop and Olivia Dunham are always looking forward to their perfect future in which they will raise their daughter and life will be peachy keen.
* ''Series/UltramanMax'': This is a hope for the majority of the heroes throughout the series and a common ShutUpHannibal to alien invaders. [[spoiler:The DistantFinale shows that yes, it will be. Humanity has become a more peaceful, better society, it's subtly implied the Delos (the other civilization living on the planet) have come out of hiding and now live peacefully with mankind, and Kaito and Mizuki are HappilyMarried with their grandson leaving on an exploration of the galaxy.]]

[[folder: Music]]
* See PepTalkSong
* "The Future" by {{Music/Sparks}}. ''In the future fun is fun / In the future lots of sun...''
* The "Carousel of Progress" at [[Ride/DisneyThemeParks Disney World]] has the song "There's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow" (which was also [[CoverVersion covered]] by Music/TheyMightBeGiants for ''Film/MeetTheRobinsons'').
* The [[Music/SteelyDan Donald Fagen]] song "I.G.Y. (What a Beautiful World)" was named for the International Geophysical Year, a series of international collaborations of scientists from many disciplines that ran from 1957-58. The song captures the Postwar optimism reflected in those times and the promise of wondrous technological marvels to come:
--> ''The future looks bright''
--> ''On that train all graphite and glitter''
--> ''Undersea by rail''
--> ''Ninety minutes from New York to Paris''
--> ''Well by seventy-six we'll be A.O.K.''
--> ''What a beautiful world this will be''
--> ''What a glorious time to be free''
* The song "The White Cliffs Of Dover" by Music/VeraLynn was written and recorded during the Second World War, when Lynn's assuration that ''"tomorrow, when the world is free/ just you wait and see"'' gave many Britons hope that the hardships of the war would be over one day.
* ''"Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance"'' by Music/FrankZappa from ''Music/WereOnlyInItForTheMoney'' sings that there will come ''"a time when everybody who is lonely will be free to sing and dance and love/ there will come a time when every evil that we know will be an evil that we can rise above"'' and ''"even take their clothes off when they dance."''
* ''Music/TheMiracle"'' by Music/{{Queen}} concludes with the lines: ''"One day you'll see/ a time will come/ when we will all be friends."''
* ''"One Day I'll Fly Away"'' by Gillian Welch also lifts the hope that despite all the miseries of today there will come a time when the protagonist will be able to escape from it.
* ''"We Shall Overcome"'' by Pete Seeger is perhaps the greatest example of this trope. Originally used for the Afro-American civil rights movement it has now become "the" rallying song to unite activists for a common cause.
* ''"Tomorrow Is Mine"'' from the film ''Film/{{Cabaret}}'' expresses faith that the future will belong to the protagonist.
* Music/BobMarley also wrote a lot of songs giving hope for a better future, ''"No Woman, No Cry"'' from ''Music/NattyDread'', being the most famous example, where he comforts a woman with the assuration that ''"everything is going to be alright"''. On the LiveAlbum ''[[Music/LiveBobMarleyAlbum Live]]'' this moment is even greater, because you hear the crowd cheer when he sings that line. ''"Hallelujah Time", "Get Up Stand Up", "Small Axe"'' and ''"Put It On"'' from ''Music/{{Burnin}}'' are songs that fall under this trope too. ''Positive Vibration'' on ''Music/RastamanVibration'' also has a positive message.
* Music/BobDylan's ''Music/TheTimesTheyAreAChangin'' sings about a society all kinds of inevitable upcoming social changes in society occur, but it's sang in a comforting and enthusiastic manner, so that the listener can hardly wait until they happen.
* Music/JohnLennon's "Mind Games" from ''Music/MindGames'' shows that despite man's mind games "love is the answer and you got to let it grow."
* Music/OrnetteColeman's ''Music/TheShapeOfJazzToCome'' welcomes a bright future for {{Jazz}}.
* Music/Gorillaz have "Clint Eastwood" from their album ''[[Music/GorillazAlbum Gorillaz]]''
--> ''I'm useless, but not for long''
--> ''The future is coming on''
* Music/KlausNomi's "Total Eclipse" from ''[[Music/KlausNomiAlbum Klaus Nomi]]'' paints a bleak picture of the world succombing into nuclear war, but his song "After The End" from ''Music/SimpleMan'' has a more hopeful message for people on Earth after the nuclear explosion. Well, kind of:
--> ''Well, the freak shall inherit the earth now''
--> ''No matter how well done or rare''
--> ''But I'm telling you hold on, hold on''
--> ''Tomorrow we'll be there''
--> ''We'll build our radioactive castles''
--> ''Out in the radioactive air''
* A common theme in Music/SunRa's music. In ''Film/SpaceIsThePlace'' he looks for a planet to take the Afro-American race to where they can live in better peace and harmony.
--> ''Oh, we sing this song to a great tomorrow''
* Tragedy + Time by Rise Against is about healing after being in a dark place in life.

[[folder: Theater]]
* The end of ''Theatre/UncleVanya'' has Sonya delivering a monologue to her Uncle about how though their life sucks now, it will be better in Heaven, and they will finally get to rest.
* [[{{Theatre/Annie}} "The sun'll come out, tomorrow / Bet your bottom dollar, that tomorrow / There'll be sun / Just thinkin' about, tomorrow / Clears away the cobwebs and the sorrow, till' there's none"]]

[[folder: Video Games]]
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII2'': In Serah's time of 5AF, humanity lives in tiny communities that eeke out a living while fighting off monsters. In every timeline after that, humans are doing better. 400AF is nightmarish but once the timeline is changed, a grand soceity has been developed where the greatest problem is slight boredom. Noel comes from a BadFuture but he went back in time to invoke this trope.

[[folder: Visual Novels]]
* Subverted in ''VisualNovel/AnalogueAHateStory''. Hyun-ae, an IllGirl, is made a HumanPopsicle because of this trope. Her family freezes her in the hope that someone will eventually find a cure for her condition. Then she's awakened a few hundred years later in a NoWomansLand.

[[folder: Web Originals]]
* The Website/ItGetsBetterProject is a series of web videos by LGBT and "straight but not narrow" adults aimed at LGBT youth to promote the message that life will get better, even if it's really tough now. The project is aimed at cutting the suicide rate for LGBT young people.