All the goodness of Mind Rape
the bitter aftertaste!
When somebody is Brainwashed
and gets better, but somehow part of the programming sticks and it shows by the character acquiring new personality traits, tics and/or quirks. For example, Alice is a mind controller who casts a spell on Bob to make him fall in love with her. Bob somehow breaks the spell, but whenever he looks at Alice now, he blushes
and can't quite explain why. Maybe he's falling in love for real, but who knows for sure.
This can be used as a Plot Device
to show that the character hasn't quite fully-recovered from his brainwashing. Maybe he has, but the idea of being somebody Not Himself
makes him change... probably for the better. Can become a Family-Unfriendly Aesop
when brainwashing is the only way for a character to change.
Also comes in other flavors:
Compare and contrast with More Than Mind Control
, where the character more or less knows that he is/was being manipulated, but goes along anyway. See Cartesian Karma
for when the residue may or may not have resided, but the consequences of their brain-washed actions are still quite valid.
Anime and Manga
- In ROD the TV, Anita becomes a bookworm like her sisters after she gets a part of The Gentleman's memories. Take note, Anita used to hate books.
- Or perhaps she just got a better understanding of Yomiko Readman and books in general.
- All of the girls Keima "conquers" in The World God Only Knows show signs of this. They just can't explain why they blush whenever the geeky otaku walks by.
- Gundam SEED Destiny has Stella, an Earth Alliance Extended who is brainwashed so she freezes up whenever anyone says "die" and absolutely trusts anyone who says "protect". Due to her memories not being properly wiped between missions, her programming leads her to associate Shinn with protection, thus allowing her to remember who he is.
- Neo Roanoke has the amnesia-type: his original identity, that of Mu La Flaga, begins to re-emerge after he's brought aboard the Archangel. He finds Murrue inexplicably familiar, instinctively remembers the ship's communication codes, and eventually begins experiencing flashes of Mu's memories and using his old Catch Phrase.
- In Sket Dance, Tsubaki took some time to get rid of cat traits.
- In the manga of Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple, Miu, a kind hearted talented martial artist girl, gets captured by the Blood Knight Evil Mentor Silkwat Junazard and gets a combination of amnesia and brainwashing which conditioned her to extreme aggression and bloodlust. Even upon being rescued and her memory restored, her bloodlust and aggression still lies subconsciously, often triggering when her emotions run high or when exerting significant effort in martial arts, even during a simple and safe training exercise. Part of this is because the bloodlust and aggression had always been a part of Miu. It's the main reason Junazard wanted her to be his disciple in the first place. Miu's grandfather trained her from an early age specifically to help her control it.
- This happens to Mara Jade when Palpatine dies.
- This was the reason Bronze Tiger always declined to lead the Suicide Squad: he was afraid the brainwashing he received at the hands of the League of Assassins could kick in any time.
- The Immortal Game: Even after Rainbow Dash is freed from the Insanity, she still feels subconsciously compelled to obey Twilight Sparkle, whose Superpowered Evil Side was the one to cast the spell on her in the first place.
- TRON fanon often plays this up in post-TRON: Legacy scenarios with Tron and that Rinzler programming. The residue ranges from massive guilt issues, VerbalTics, bizarre thought patterns, or even fits of madness where he attacks his allies.
- The Shapeshifting flavor happens in Discworld, although it isn't involuntary, and Granny Weatherwax only "Borrows" an animal's body for some purpose, sharing it with the real animal for a short time. But after she's exited the animal's body, she still retains impulses from whatever shape she borrowed. For example, she stopped using owls to see at night because "You ends up for days trying to twist your head right round," and after she's borrowed an entire beehive, she declares, "I wantzzz a bunzzch of flowerzz, a pot of honey, and someone to szzzting."
- It's also noted that at least one of the people she made think they had been turned into a frog still enjoy swimming in a pond long after the spell wore off. He was grateful for getting a new hobby.
- In the Deryni works, Sean Lord Derry suffers from this, referring to nightmares he had after his captivity and torture at the hands of Wencit of Torenth. He reluctantly admits the nightmares returned years later in anticipation of Kelson's trip to Torenth for Liam-Lajos's investiture in King Kelson's Bride. This foreshadows Morag's reasserting control over his mind, control which is taken and used by Teymuraz.
- In the New Jedi Order, after Tahiri is rescued from an attempt to brainwash her into believing she was a Yuuzhan Vong, it became a running subplot for several books that she retained most of the false memories subconsciously and under moments of extreme stress would adopt Vong mannerisms or even spout the Vong language. It was eventually revealed that the brainwashing had failed to overwrite Tahiri's original personality but had succeeded in creating a Yuuzhan Vong personality, Riina, who was almost totally independent of Tahiri's own mind. They ended up combining into a third personality to avoid going incurably insane.
- In Kingdom Hearts II, when Sora bids farewell to Hayner, Pence and Olette, he sheds a single tear but doesn't know why. Little does he know that he has Roxas' memories within him, and he remembers them as his friends in the virtual world.
- It was used again in Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days, and for the same character. After growing close to another member of the organization, a girl named Xion, he discovers that Xion is actually an artificial replica of him that's been slowly eating away his life energy just by existing. The only way to stop it all is for one of them to die. Xion ends up committing suicide by best friend and gets erased from everyone's memory. In the end, Roxas is left with nothing but rage and a great sense of loss, without fully understanding why he's feeling these things.
- NieR decides to save Kainé at the cost of his own existence in the final ending. When she comes to, she starts crying when she finds the flower Nier gave her, but can't remember who it was from.
- In The King of Fighters, Ash sacrifices his existence to prevent the entire Ash Saga from happening. None of the other characters remember him, except for Elizabeth, due to having his Tragic Keepsake.
- Final Fantasy VII: Even after Cloud, who absorbed and/or assimilated Zack's memories, regains his real memories, he retains Zack's fighting style and some of his mannerisms. Although he reverts to his real personality and becomes more comfortable with showing his insecurities, he occasionally still puts on Zack's cocky act in front of the others.
- Funnily enough Call of Duty: Black Ops plays with some brainwash residue. When Mason escapes from the Soviet Union and gets back to the US, he experiences flashes, seeing and hearing numbers, seeing a hallucination of Reznov despite him being dead and even what looks like scenes of drawing a gun on the president, really the brainwashing hasn't worn off yet.
- This extends to Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 - at the end of the second 1980s level, Mason encounters Lev Kravchenko, previously presumed dead in Vietnam. During the next scene, he has to actively suppress an urge to execute him on the spot so that Woods can get some useful information out of him.
- In Chapter 34 of Gunnerkrigg Court Jack claims to be in love with Zimmy, and attributes it to a remnant of his possession by a ghostly spider obsessed with Zimmy which tried to take control of his mind. This doesn't seem to worry him.
- In Squid Ops, main character Mui brainwashes her sister using some hypnotic squid ink (yes, It Makes Sense in Context) that makes people obedient to her. The first thing she tells her to do is to answer with "Yes, Mui. I obey." whenever Mui gives her a command. Later, after the effects of the ink wear off, Mui brings her sister some lunch and says "Take it and don't be mad, okay?" Lena reflexively replies "Yes, Mui. I obey."
- In The Return Nabiki and Akane still have a significant amount of mental contamination after being enslaved and Mind Raped by Alexia and it takes a lot of work to salvage any of their original selves.
- Misako (Ryouga) had her previous identity completely lost and is, for all intents and purposes, a new person whose personality is based on nothing but Brainwash Residue.
- In Ben 10: Alien Force, Albedo is an villain who copied Ben's appearance and Omnitrix. He also gained some of Ben's characteristics, like eating junk food. After having his Omnitrix broken, stuck with Ben's color-swapped form, and taken to prison, he shouts, "BRING ME CHILI FRIES!!!"
- In Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, Tim Drake still has aftereffects of his last encounter with The Joker (of the 'uncontrollable shaking and bad dreams' kind) after 40 years. Given what The Joker put him through, that's really not that surprising.