Where does it hurt?
And she said: "Alas! if he should die. Would that there were kings in Gondor, as there were once upon a time, they say! For it is said in old lore: 'The hands of the king are the hands of a healer.' And so the rightful king could ever be known."
Characters with a Healing Factor
have the ability to heal themselves at an incredibly fast rate. Characters with Healing Hands
, however, are kind enough to share the wealth.
These are characters who have the ability to heal others. Usually this involves placing their glowing hands
on another person's injuries, quickly healing the victim's wounds. In other more fantasy-based stories, a character may specialize in healing magic and be the team's designated healing hands. This is the role often given to the White Mage
or The Healer
. Their primary purpose is to make sure that their comrades don't get killed on the battlefield. More accurately, they're there to let the fighters nearly get themselves killed, and then patch them up back to fighting strength (which is the justification to Shoot the Medic First
Due to its support nature, these abilities are often relegated to characters other than The Hero
, usually The Medic
, but may also be applied to teammates or sidekicks (often The Chick
, sometimes The Smart Guy
). If the Hero does possess the ability, it will be just one of his many. When they aren't the hero, these characters usually have limited offensive power, and will optionally possess the ability to dole out Standard Status Effects
to enemies, or to improve the fighting abilities of their teammates. Part and parcel of this package is the ability to cure poison and other such nastiness.
While some characters may possess healing abilities advanced enough to revive the dead
, this trope does not apply to those who solely bring back the dead. That's a different animal entirely. Oddly, healing hands may not be able to remove scars or regrow limbs.
Characters who heal by coming in contact or extremely close range with their patient may come from the imagery of real-life medics. Because, you know, it's not like medics have healing guns, or something
It should be noted that when a villain has a healing power, it usually involves sapping life
from others to restore their own vitality. Often, the reverse is true for a hero, who must pay a price
, typically fatigue or life energy
, to heal others.
Also, in the wise words of Mr. Welch
, the person with Healing Hands should make sure he knows exactly where
he lays his hands.
Oftentimes, this power is also coupled with Magically Regenerating Clothing
, usually when the wound is caused either by bullet or stabbing weapon - it can usually be seen in the form of the bloodstain going slowly away (as if the soaking process was played backwards) and the clothes consequently appearing undamaged (i.e. without bullet holes, etc.).
Not to be confused with the Hong Kong medical drama of the same name. See also Psychic Surgery
for a more invasive form of magical healing.
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Anime & Manga
- Dende, Mr. Popo, and Buu from Dragon Ball Z. In fact, a great number of Nameks besides Dende are also implied to have this, as Dende is part of a class of "healer" Nameks. Piccolo can repair clothing but not heal, while the latter don't repair clothing. Blood usually vanishes, bloodstains have to manually cleaned when other healing methods are used.
- Asa, Primula, Kareha, and Nerine from SHUFFLE!.
- Shamal of Lyrical Nanoha specializes in this, and most mages eventually learn a healing spell or two.
- All the medical ninja from Naruto, most notably Tsunade and Sakura. Though, it's more like superpower assisted first-aid and surgery than healing and also that the knowledge of anatomy and chakra control necessary for healing makes them dangerous, to say the least.
- Said Healing Hands and knowledge of the human anatomy make Kabuto a particularly dangerous enemy in his battle with Naruto, where he was cutting tendons and fracturing bones with mere touches of the skin.
- This is played slightly differently during Naruto's fight with Neji. Kabuto, in disguise as an ANBU ninja, heals Hinata when she suffers a backlash from her previous fight with her cousin. Kiba, being one of the many Idiot Heros, does not recognize medical ninjutsu and at first thinks that Kabuto is... feeling Hinata.
- It's been shown that Karin can heal anyone that bites her.
- Most recently Naruto has also gained this ability after meeting the Sage of Six Paths and his ability appears to be FAR beyond what even the greatest medic nins are capable of. Being able to stop Gai from dying even after he had unleashed all Eight Gates. Also he was able recreate Kakashi's original left eye after his Sharingan was stolen by Madara and resuscitate Obito who was dying as of the result of using Gedo: Art of Rinne Rebirth.
- JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
- Josuke can do this with his Stand power easily due to his power being the ability to restore anything that is broken, but he cannot do it to himself.
- Giorno can heal himself, but has to use something to turn into what he is trying to heal, like the bullets you were shot with to fix your organs. (This leads to an... odd moment later on in the story.)
- Elf dust in Berserk can heal wounds. This is sometimes an unfortunate fact for Puck, the elf that travels with Guts - when he needs healing (and after a typical Apostle fight, he's usually in bad need of it), Guts has no problem with grabbing Puck and shaking him over whatever wounds need to be healed.
- In YuYu Hakusho:
- Botan, Genkai, and Yukina all have healing powers, although the latter is the only one to use it more than once. The actual team medic is Kurama, the plant master.
- When Sniper tried to off Mitarai and a bookshelf ended up falling on Botan, Genkai healed her. Also implied after the second fight with Goki that Botan had healed Yusuke; later in the same episode/arc, she ended up using her powers to prevent Keiko's demonification.
- Although his healing powers are never shown onscreen (except for one instance where he reattached his severed arm), it is said at the end of the series that Sensui's former henchman Doctor Kamiya opened up his own medical facility, using his powers to heal the sick and injured.
- In OnePiece:
- In chapter 774 it turns out that the dwarf princess Mansherry has eaten the Heal-Heal fruit, allowing her to instantly heal anyone to full health. This is the reason why she was captured by the Doflamingo Pirates: on the off chance that the executives are defeated, they would simply use her powers to revive and restore them, essentially leading to an endless battle of attrition against them.
- In Bleach:
- Shinigami can use Kidou to heal. Battlefield healing can be performed by any kidou-capable Shinigami such as Rukia and Hinamori although (as Uryuu and Shinji observe) it only acts as a temporary measure until healers can treat the injuries properly. The Fourth Division practices a specialist form of Kidou called Kaidou, which is Healing Kidou. They can do more than just heal with their hands, but can perform full surgery as well. Kira is once drafted to provide some very serious battlefield healing precisely because he had once been a member of the Fourth Division and therefore had the specialist training. Kidou Corps-trained shinigami such as Tessai and Hacchi also have phenomenal healing ability and the best Shinigami healer is Kirinji, whose power manifests as two waves of water, the first stripping the tainted blood and the second to replacing it, washing away all traces of the injuries in the process.
- Orihime has phenomenal and unusual abilities, including healing talent. She creates a shield around the injured party and effectively rejects the idea that the injury ever occurred. She can regenerate completely destroyed limbs and even bring people back from the very verge of death, even if their head has been blown apart, which is supposed the kind of injury beings of reiatsu don't survive.
- Nel's healing ability is a parody. She vomits on a person's injury as her saliva contains very effective healing powers. Unsurprisingly, no-one wants her to heal them.
- Villainous example Giselle uses the blood or skin of her victims to heal her friends and allies, grafting the skin from a dead shinigami to fully restore Candice's arm when it's lost in battle against Ichigo. As her ability can also enslave a person as her "zombie", even her allies are nervous about having her heal them just in case she takes control of them.
- Quincies do possess a healing ability that works in a similar fashion to Shinigami kidou, but it's implied very few know how to do it, hence the reliance on Giselle's unsavoury method. Souken Ishida possessed the knowledge to both heal injuries and cleanse them of the attacker's taint. As inheritor of all of Souken's knowledge and abilities, Ryuuken is implied to as well, although whether or not he uses them is unknown. However, Ryuuken's cousin, Masaki Kurosaki, has been shown using the Quincy healing power.
- Hotaru Tomoe/Sailor Saturn from Sailor Moon has this ability, despite being quite sickly herself. She's not a White Magician Girl, though.
- Expanded and explored very thoroughly in the manga Double Arts. All of the Sisters, but in particular Sister Elraine, have an enhanced immunity to a strange and virulent plague called 'Troi.' The Sisters save patient's lives by putting their hands on them and absorbing the toxins from the patient's body, but, despite living, the patient still carries Troi and can never touch an unaffected person, at the risk of spreading the disease. On the other hand, Kiri, the only person so far who is completely immune to Troi, not only can heal minor diseases by touching someone else, but when he touches another person, that person's strength doubles, along with his own. And as more people join in, the strength increases exponentially.
- Played with in D.Gray-Man. While Miranda's Innocence can heal any recently inflicted wound, no matter how severe (the only exception being death and the damage to Lenalee's legs brought on by driving her own Innocence too far,) it's only temporary, and once she deactivates her Innocence, any wounds that were healed (including ones suffered while it's activated) will come back all at once.
- Xiao Long of Psycho Busters does this with his Qigong. He calls it fixing.
- Mahou Sensei Negima!'s White Magic reacts this way, though usually only for basic healing spells. The higher level healing is glowy-er.
- Toki of Fist of the North Star uses Hokuto Shin Ken to heal others with his hands. Ironically, he's dying of radiation poisoning. (Thus earning him the nickname "Kung-Fu Jesus".)
- This is how healing is depicted in Slayers. While some of the cast have some level of healing magic, Sylphiel, being a cleric/priestess, is the master of it.
- Chrono Crusade:
- Joshua, Rosette's brother, has a glowing version of this. (perfect healing)
- Azmaria has similar powers, but she sings instead of using glowing hands.
- Iks's abilities help people heal from wounds quickly (sans glowing hands). From The Third: The Girl with the Blue Eye
- Vanilla from the Galaxy Angel anime does this with the help of a glowing jewel on the back of her hand.
- Solty in Solty Rei, though it's imperfect. Interesting considering her other main ability is a Power Fist.
- Yellow from Pokémon Special is gifted by the Viridian Forest with this ability. Pokemon only though.
- Saori Kido from Saint Seiya, being the incarnation of Athena aka the Goddess of Defensive Warfare, is excellent at this.
- Belnika, a late add-on to the team in Rave Master meets the main character via this ability.
- Sulia Gaudeamus from Fatal Fury The Movie, although in her case it's any skin-to-skin contact. Hands are easiest, but when Terry is severely injured and hands aren't enough, she strips to her underwear and lays on top of him to allow for greater healing through greater physical contact.
- Yuma Chitose of Puella Magi Oriko Magica.
- The real Yuuri of Puella Magi Kazumi Magica.
- Nurse Yoko of the Mai-HiME manga version appears to have a healing Element, which works on physical injuries, but not illnesses (like Takumi's) or more permanent damage (Yuuichi's arm injury).
- Queen Maria Pia Armonia from Victory Gundam has this, among several other Psychic Powers coming from her Newtype nature. Her daughter Shakti Kareen shares this ability.
- Osamu Tezuka's Phoenix saga includes at least one point at which a phoenix feather heals people; this might not count so much, being an item, but that the people believed it was the power of the nun who was using the feather, and didn't realize it was the feather itself, which they saw as incidental to the healing.
- In Saiyuki, this is apparently part and parcel of Hakkai's ki manipulation powerset, along with Ki Attacks and barriers. The healing abilities are shown to be basically Cast from Hit Points, though, so he mostly uses them when people's lives would be in danger otherwise, and can't at all if he's injured.
- Kotoha, Rami, and Miyabi of Arata Kangatari are members of the Unemezoku, who can heal others' wounds, but not themselves, through direct body contact.
- Ruri from Rising X Rydeen can use her time manipulation ability as a substitute for healing hands. Her ability, "chain of lost memory", allows her to revert anything she touches or has touched with her right hand back to the state it was five minutes ago. So as long as the person has been wounded for less than five minutes and the wound is superficial she can reverse their injury.
- Wicked City. Makie can generate a blue glow from her hands that can heal physical injuries and restore lost Life Energy.
- Raven of New Teen Titans heals others by absorbing their pain and some degree of their injury into herself, a grisly take on healing powers.
- Indigo Tribesmen from Green Lantern can heal.
- X-Men has some mutants with this power, like Elixir.
- Angel is a more grisly variation, who is able to share his Healing Factor by cutting himself and bleeding on others. Earlier there was the Morlock Healer, who actually died by overstressing his power. Angel's power had an interesting limitation: it would only work on people with the same blood type as his (or maybe anyone who could accept his blood type). It was discovered when, after an attack by an anti-mutant fringe group, they had him donating blood through about eight separate tubes to as many badly injured mutants. However, only some of them were healed.
- Angel's blood even burns mutants descended from ancient beings whose mutations classify them as "demonic," but we try to forget that.
- In the generally regarded as "out of continuity" origin story Children of the Atom, there is a character called Scab who healed by taking whatever injuries one person had and putting them on himself. He saved Jean Grey's life and promptly died, never to be mentioned again.
- Also, the alien Zsaji, an empathic healer who ended up dying to save Colossus during the Secret Wars. She herself was not a memorable character, in that the sole purpose for her existence was to break up Colossus and Kitty Pryde.
- This was the paranormal ability of Anastasia Inyushin of The New Universe title Psi-Force.
- Stephanie Harrington of DP 7 also had some abilities in this line.
- ElfQuest healers have the lay-on-hands ability to heal. With amplification, they don't even need to touch their patients, and they can heal multiple patients at once. The power has been expanded to include flesh-shaping (a painful process at times); DNA-altering; pain-inducing; and some other applications. The ability to stimulate nerve endings can also enhance healers' relationships. The Gatherum notes that the attempted move to an Animated Adaptation required the loss of healing powers, since the "lay-on-hands" thing offended the Media Watchdogs.
- Vern of PS238 has this ability, to such a degree that he manages to bring another character back from the dead. This earns him a lecture from a third character who can speak with the dead about how this is unnatural and wrong and he can't ever do it again.
- Recently Eddie Brock from Spider-Man had his Venom powers pull a Reverse Polarity after he came into contact with another person with Healing Hands. So now he has a white alien symbiote and all the associated powers and the ability to heal people. Not always a good thing considering he can also heal radiation, which gives people like Spider-Man or Radioactive Man their powers.
- In The Invisibles, Jack Frost later gets to use this power, curing King Mob's lung injury/
- Toxyn from Strikeforce: Morituri was able to generate a variety of biochemicals after touching someone, including quick-healing antidotes.
- In The Blue Mountains, the princess can revive the hero if there is even a bit of life in him.
- Slipstream, the Decepticons' medic in Transformers Meta, has a healing ray in place of an arm that she had lost in battle prior to the series's events.
- Tailsko in Ed, Edd n' Eddy Z can heal the heroes in just a few minutes, sometimes less. You just have to make sure they are still alive first.
- Warriors of the World has crusaders doing this often. Priests use their hands to maximise efficiency, but they don't always need to. Unsurprisingly anyone with either profession will be serving as The Medic on their own teams.
Film - Animated
- In Tangled, Rapunzel has a variation on this. She has healing hair. If someone is injured, she can wrap the wounded part of the body in her hair, sing a magic song, and all better. This works on shallow cuts, deep stabbings, and has the nifty side-effect of removing the effects of age. The last part is deconstructed. Gothel kidnaps Rapunzel because of it.
Film - Live Action
- In the horror film 5ive Girls a character in a reform school reveals that she has this power by easing the pain of a classmate who was recently spanked with a ruler. Fanservice demands that she literally lay on hands to the affected area.
- ET The Extra Terrestrial, whose title character heals Elliott's cut finger with his own glowing fingertip.
- Mr Miyagi of The Karate Kid, sort of. He knew some pressure points and techniques to suppress pain.
- In Push, they're called Stitchers. Healing is very painful, and it hurts even worse when they use their power in reverse.
- The angel Michael possesses this ability in Wishmaster 3.
- In Middle-Earth:
- In The Lord of the Rings, the real king has healing powers. This is based on the old European folk belief that kings could indeed heal scrofulosis and other diseases. The same idea is referenced and parodied in various Discworld books. It is left somewhat ambiguous within the narrative whether Aragorn actually possesses special powers due to his distant elven ancestry or whether he's simply making use of herbal techniques the Gondorians have forgotten over the centuries.
- Aes Sedai in the The Wheel of Time series. The Yellow Ajah specializes in healing. Placing their hands on the other person isn't necessary for Healing. They just learned it that way, and can't do it without the gesture; it's incredibly hard, if not impossible, to re-learn a technique.
- Nynaeve Sedai is one of the most powerful healers in modern times, possibly ever. She figured out how to heal Stilling, Gentling, Tainted-Saidin-induced insanity, and assisted the Dragon Reborn in "healing" Saidin by removing the Dark One's taint from it. She intuited her way through most of these, itself unheard of never mind that each was an achievement to rival any in the last three thousand years.
- Thom Creed from the gay teen lit superhero novel Hero.
- John Coffey in Stephen King's The Green Mile. The manifestation of the ailments he heals are tiny, luminescent bugs which he uses to scramble one bad guard's brain.
- The Deed of Paksenarrion by Elizabeth Moon includes healing powers granted by various gods. Paladins also get healing powers, but it's anything but easy to use them, as Paks herself found out: You mentally dip into an awareness of the body, like a stream, locate the things that are impeding the stream, fix them, and then get forcibly ejected by a body that doesn't want interlopers on its territory.
- Fairies in the Artemis Fowl series have a variety of healing abilities, ranging from purging the body of radiation and reattaching severed limbs to curing chronic depression. The ability is explicitly stated to "target" areas of the body, and physical injuries have a four-minute time limit, which can be fudged. like Butler in the third book, who was frozen before the time limit ended. This added a severe complication to the healing itself, but he got better.
- Wild Cards series has several healers:
- John Fortune had the power to heal others before his wild card was turned again with the Overtrump cure. This proves a mixed blessing as his original ability was slowly killing him.
- Kim, something of godchild to Archer, could heal others by copying their malady and then synchronously restoring herself and the afflicted to their respective healthy states. This included reversing the Wild Card virus.
- While not explicitly described, Sleeper Croyd might have possessed healer powers.
- Wyungare, the Australian shaman Ace, can heal some afflictions with his rituals.
- The exact amount of the Radical's powers is unknown, as he can do anything any alter ego of Mark Meadows could do, even if Mark was not aware of this alter ego and ability. There might well be a healer in the set.
- Tom Quincy, nicknamed The Eskimo, can produce and inject any substance on touch. Unfortunately, his chosen interest are psychopharmaka, and his employer a drug trafficking gang.
- Quasiman, a deuce/ace, can heal others, but as he is not always completely in one mental, temporal and spatial frame, this is erratic at best.
- The Columbian Ace Coca Mama can administer therapeutic doses of cocaine directly into the bloodstream. Or kill by overdosing victims on the spot.
- Rev. Leo Barnett is an actual faith healer. In the Wild Card world, this would make him an Ace - too bad that he is anti-joker and not afflicted by the Wild Card.
- Alexey Pehov's Wind and Sparks universe features healer mages, predominantly female (the last two male healers were born 1000 years apart). Providing something of a twist, they are very rare. The actual healing works as the trope describes, but its only their most basic spell. Advanced healers, especially male ones, can pull nigh divine feats of magic, including the ones unrelated to healing, like growing stone teleporters. Healers also have a deserved reputation of being somewhat crazy.
- V. Ivashchenko subverts the trope with Valle, called "Black Earl". While a necromancer, Valle can treat diseases and curses beyond the abilities of regular healers, which are quite common in Ivashchenko's works. Valle learned healing in an attempt to turn his own necromancy backwards, to reduce the extreme prejudice he was treated with.
- Vadim Panov's Secret City novels feature the Order and Monastery of Erli, where modern medical science intertwines with magic. While upholding true neutrality, a short story twists the image: Erli monks perform very dubious to outright illegal and immoral research.
- Sergej Lukjanenko's Night Watch tetralogy features healing as a rather common magic. Both watches prefer a half-decent fighter of some kind to another healer, e.g. Tiger Cub.
- Mercedes Lackey has magical Healers in both her urban fantasies and her Heralds of Valdemar series.
- In the Apprentice Adept series: Lady Blue is introduced as a healer who would treat anyone who came upon her door, only turning away those beyond her power to help. (Those who's injuries were too old or severe for her own magic to fix)
- The Star Wars Expanded Universe:
- Jedi healers use the Force to help others in this regard- healers include Barriss Offee◊ and Cilghal◊.
- Cade Skywalker has a special variant on the technique called Force Resuscitation; it is unique in that it can heal normally fatal wounds rather quickly, as well as corruptive plagues and other such maladies. It also works in reverse; that is, kill people beyond repair. However, it has two major drawbacks; one, the user channels this ability through the dark side (Cade's eyes flash from their usual emerald green to a blood-red color whenever he uses it), and two, the recipient must be willing to accept the healing, or else it won't work.
- The Wizard, from the Seekers of Truth books, can do this. It's one of the things that makes him think he's a bit Blessed with Suck compared to some of the others.
- Mia Cooper of The Shapeshifter series has this power, it nearly kills her on several occasions because she absorbs people pain. Fortunately she gets better at using it.
- Roswell High, similar to the Roswell TV show listed above. The aliens have the power to heal.
- The Dresden Files has a few examples: Queen Mab (yes, that Mab) and the Leanansidhe can heal serious injuries with just a touch, and some human wizards (i.e., Elaine, Injun Joe) can use their magic for healing and medical purposes, albeit on a much smaller scale. This is supposed to be extremely hard to do, however; Harry mentions all the biological processes a healer needs to mind in order to make sure they don't screw it up, and the fact that Lea can heal one of his wounds with a simple kiss is a sign of just how powerful she is.
- And the fact that, in the case of Mab and Lea, Harry is indebted to them, so they can pretty much control his body anyways.
- In Jim Butcher's other series, Codex Alera has Watercrafters. This is their signature ability, though not their only one by any means. They actually have all sorts of combat abilities (when someone has all of the water pulled out of their body, they tend to stop being a threat). They are also empaths by virtue of their Watercraft, so the ones without Metalcraft to ignore the empathic pain from others tend to stick to healing.
- Each Guardian has a unique Gift that relates to what they were in life. Healing Hands is the Gift of Michael, Dru and Pim, but as they are bound not to interfere in human free will, they can only heal wounds inflicted by or on a supernatural being.
- In Gail Dayton's One Rose Trilogy, many East naitani have this.
- In Shadows of the Apt, the Butterfly Apt allows for this.
- Healer Adepts (and Lord Adepts who have the right set of powers) can heal others and themselves in Jean Lorrah's Savage Empire books.
- The Grimnoir Chronicles have Healers/Menders who can heal others and/or themselves. Actives can lay on hands and heal specific things, Passives have an area of effect within which people just heal faster.
- In C. S. Lewis's Till We Have Faces, the people of Glome come to believe that the beautiful princess Istra can heal their plague. She goes around placing her hands on the entire country, and the plague goes away. It's uncertain whether she actually did have this power, but the people certainly believe she does, and begin worshiping her. The local goddess is not amused.
- In the Sword of Truth, any wizard can do this. War Wizards can do this on instinct alone. Sorceresses can learn to heal, but never as effectively as wizards.
- It has a nice integration of the Additive/Subtractive magic system: if someone has internal bleeding in their lungs, you have to remove that blood or they won't be able to breath even if you rebuild their lungs. However, it's very hard to control Subtractive magic, so you have to be sure to not accidentally get rid of their organs. It fits the Crap Sack World setting that even trying to heal someone risks horribly mutilating them.
- Mother Abagail had it at least briefly in The Stand ; she healed Frannie's back after the explosion. It was probably a channeling holy power kind of thing, given her role in the novel and the religious aspects.
- The Adversary Cycle book The Touch is about a doctor who receives this power.
- Trapped on Draconica: Technically it's Healing Breath but otherwise Erowin can cure even those in critical condition. After she becomes an angel this power goes Up to Eleven: death itself is no longer an obstacle.
- In Chivalric Romance, such tales as Crescentia and Florence of Rome had the Blessed Virgin give the heroine healing powers, or sometimes a healing herb. (Her fame as a healer drew all the characters in the tale who had wronged her, resulting in a scene where the truth could be revealed, and the Happy Ending.)
- Blank Rune: Blodwen uses her healing powers to heal her friends and keep the living things in her house alive without having to worry about taking care of them. Including keeping her baked goods fresh.
- The aptly-titled Rapha (Hebrew for “healer”) from the second book of The Mark of the Lion trilogy gains a reputation for having these, although she herself attributes them to the power of God.
- Aretzes in The Quest of the Unaligned get this as their secondary power. It's also the first form of magic the protagonist masters.
- Very much reconstructed and discussed in The Sharing Knife books, especially once Dag gets apprenticed as a maker. Medicine makers prefer to use mundane means whenever possible, since healing (usually called ground work) can be draining. It is possible to do Psychic Surgery and similar, but it carries with it real risks to the maker too. Often, mundane methods of medicine or chirurgy are used primarily, while ground work supplements it to fend off infections, control internal bleedings, or repair nerve damage.
- The Tendu of The Color Of Distance don't have healing hands exactly. Rather, they have fleshy spurs on their wrists and stick those into living things, which they are able to heal or alter freely. When linking with people, whether humans or other Tendu, they tend to clasp forearms. A small child healed this way describes it as holding hands.
- Many academic mages from Circle of Magic have this ability. Briar, who has a Green Thumb and can do this for plants becomes emotionally distraught when he's stuck in a plague and realizes that he can't heal people.
- In Vampire Academy, one of the basic powers of spirit users is to heal others by placing their hands on them.
Live Action TV
- Little House on the Prairie: Season 6's "The Faith Healer" is about a charismatic preacher who claims that he can heal the sick, allow the lame to walk an the blind to see. But after a young teenager dies due to a ruptured appendix after supposedly being healed by the preacher, Charles sets out and confirms what he had suspected all along: That this faith healer is a phony.
- The Whitelighters from Charmed do this.
- The aliens in Roswell. It was later retconned that only Max could do this.
- In Heroes:
- Linderman is an interesting case, seeing as he's a healer and The Big Bad.
- Hiro's mother is also a healer, except that she has healing lips. She can literally "kiss it and make it better."
- Similarly, anyone on the show with a healing factor seems to have this ability now as long as they've got a syringe handy, seeing as Claire's blood brought her dad back from the dead.
- Not necessarily "healing" but Isaac from Teen Wolf was able to take some of the pain away from a dying dog. Presumably all werewolves have this ability as well.
- The "Homo Superiors" from The Tomorrow People.
- Shawn Farrell in The 4400.
- As of the sixth season of Smallville, Chloe.
- The X-Files:
- The show had a couple healers, among them one who took onto himself the ailments he was healing. His was a miserable existence growing more miserable with every healing until finally he brought someone back from the dead, thus taking death onto himself and ending his suffering.
- Aliens in The X-Files also had this ability, notably Jeremiah Smith and his kin.
- Stargate SG-1 has several:
- In "Frozen," the Sufficiently Advanced Alien Ancient woman is able to heal the disease she accidentally infects the team with. Though she can't heal herself of it.
- In "Lost City," when O'Neill has the Ancient database loaded in his brain, the second time, the knowledge "unspools" far enough that he is able to do this after Bra'tac is stabbed by The Mole.
- Too many times to count with Goa'uld, Tok'ra, and former hosts of either using the Goa'uld handheld healing device.
- The Nox — though they brought people back from the dead, so maybe it doesn't really count...
- The Wraith from Stargate Atlantis could heal and revive people by giving back the life-force they took from someone else. Not that they were in the habit of doing this a lot.
- An episode of "Friday the 13th: The Series" involved a phony faith healer who found a glove that gave him real healing powers. Given the nature of the antiques on the show, there was a nasty twist. Namely, any disease/condition the healer cured was transferred to him-and he had to pass it on to another victim, who would die of the original ailment multiplied a dozen times over. This leads to a rather nasty Karmic Death on the part of the healer when he tries to heal a bullet wound he receives later in the episode.
- In Carnivŕle, this is Ben Hawkins main power, although it always comes with a price.
- The angels in Supernatural are shown to possess tremendous healing abilities, being able to heal major injuries and raise the dead with little effort. Naturally, this is the first ability Castiel loses after he defects from Heaven.
- Paul in The Fades has this ability,, and it appears to be a common power of Angelics
- Cole in Tracker has this. He heals Mel at least once. It was never shown if Mel could do it; she did recharge Cole but never healed anyone.
- Merlin in Merlin, thanks to his magic. Gaius too on a couple of occasions, and guest-star Alice, described as one of the most powerful healers of them all (though this is something of an Informed Attribute).
- The made-for-tv movie A Touch of Hope based on the real life Dean Kraft who is known for his ability to heal those who are beyond medical help with exactly this trope.
- The Koschei, a breed of Wesen from Grimm named afte the character from Russian folklore have this ability. They can also reverse the process, causing extreme radiation poisoning. The Koschei character in the episode "Red Menace" spent years as an assassin for the Russian government, before having a Heel-Face Turn and dedicating himself to healing. He sacrificed himself to save the daughter of a man he killed, establishing that the healing is Cast from Hit Points.
Mythology and Religion
- In Dungeons & Dragons:
- "Laying On Hands" is an ability that can be acquired by paladins. In addition, clerics (and, to a lesser degree, druids) are capable wielders of healing of the spellcasting variety. Paladins and Rangers are too, although they're both primarily combat classes that only have magic as supplement. Bards can use the healing spells, too.
- In the third edition of D&D in particular, good and many neutral clerics have the ability to turn any of their prepared spells into healing energy as needed. This theoretically frees them from having to load up on healing magic to the exclusion of more 'interesting' spells, but doesn't do much to dispel the 'heal-bot' image the class suffers from in some players' minds. Their being bar none the most powerful class as of Third Edition, though, does.
- All core non "mass" healing spells require touches, meaning a lot of them qualify.
- In the 3.5 Source Book Complete Champion, reserve feats were introduced (which give a caster a power usable as long as he has a spell of a certain type prepared but hasn't cast it yet). One of these is "Touch of Healing".
- Soto, a strangulation-oriented villain in the Ravenloft setting, was given this power as part of his Ironic Hell. He can't turn it off.
- The Blessed in Deadlands can perform the miracle "Lay On Hands", which requires touching.
- Any mage with enough knowledge of Life magic in either Mage: The Awakening or Mage: The Ascension can do this. Shapeshifters in Werewolf: The Apocalypse can learn Gifts for this.
- In Wraith The Oblivion, wraiths who know Usury can heal via equivalent exchange, sacrificing part of their being to heal both wraiths and living humans, or taking others' life force to heal themselves (Stealing life force, however, strengthens the Shadow). Wraith 20th enables them to let other people make the equivalent exchange as well.
- Various healing and regeneration spells in GURPS along with the advantage "Healing". Interestingly having actual medical knowledge is useful when using magic to heal a wound.
- The Heal spell from Shadowrun requires hands to be placed on the affected area.
- In Warhammer the champion of Tzeentch Aekold Helbrass does this uncontrollably, causing anyone close to him to regenerate. This can include the enemy he just stabbed. The ability also causes plants to flourish wherever he walks.
- Exalted has a number of examples:
- The Medicine Charms of the Solar Exalted really stand out. They allow a skilled surgeon to cut treatment time radically, instantly purge a person of poisons through proper manipulation of Essence, and regrow severed limbs.
- While Solar charms are capable of impressive feats, the most impressive effects require an hour of treatment and a day of rest to manifest, specifically averting the instant healing side of this trope, although it still turns months of bed rest into mere hours. Alternatively, there is a martial art that allows one to heal a character instantly by punching him, repeatedly.
- The "Medicine" skill in the third edition of In Nomine Satanis / Magna Veritas behaves like normal medicine/surgery for the first three levels (level 3 heals 3 HP in four hours), then switches to magical healing that works in one minute or even one second.
- In the Trinity Universe:
- Vitakinetics in Ćon can heal both physical and mental conditions. At the higher levels of power, they can cure cancer and regenerate limbs, although it takes from days to months for a patient to properly recuperate.
- Novas in Aberrant can heal injuries, stop disease and poison, and regenerate limbs and organs.
- Mesmerists in Adventure can heal others' wounds by touching them and concentrating for a moment.
- All Toa of Water in BIONICLE are able to heal others (it is unknown if any other types of Toa can), but they have to sacrifice some of their Toa Power(or someone else's) to do so.
- Gali healed Tahu of a Rakshi-inflicted wound by using hers, Lewa's, and Kopaka's elemental powers. There appeared to be no permanent loss of of their Power, just fatigue.
- The current Turaga used to be Toa, and were changed by pouring their power into the Matoran to wake them all up after they were put to sleep by Makuta. They had already imbued the six Toa Stones that were used to call Tahu's team with their energies, ensuring the future of their people.
- As part of the Stock RPG Spells, pick a White Magician Girl, any White Magician Girl. Even if the game uses a standardized magic system, odds are she'll have some kind of special unique healing ability.
- In the Final Fantasy series, the category of spells that focuses primarily on healing (usually with a side-order of other defensive spells) is known as White Magic. White Mages use it best, though other jobs, or just anyone you arbitrarily assign the ability to, may be capable of using it to a lesser degree depending on the game. Specific characters that have healing abilities are:
- In the games, some Pokémon learn moves to heal other members on the party, like Heal Bell and Arometherapy, which heal the Standard Status Effects, or Wish, which can heal 50% health of a teammate if it is switched in after use. Others like the Chansey line and Miltank have the moves Softboiled and Milk Drink to heal others outside battle.
- Gen. V introduced Heal Pulse, a move that can heal any Pokemon in battle other than the user. Even your opponent's pokemon.
- Yellow in the Manga also has the power to heal Pokemon by touching them. The difference is that she is a Trainer. She's not the only one with that power...
- Micaiah from Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn (from the above picture) has the aptly-named "Healing Hand" (or Sacrifice in the English adaptation). More of a sacrifice than anything, as she uses her life force to heal others. Notable because she is one of the lead characters, the other being Ike. It's kind of a double edged sword, though:
- On one hand, its only real uses are for EXP grinding (by using it on someone and having Laura heal Michiah) and healing status effects (something it does without HP loss). It becomes even more useless once she can promote and use staves — they don't leave the already frail liability (who gives a game over if she dies) injured.
- On the other, it still retains situational uses for its ability to remove status effects without taking up inventory space and being unaffected by silence. (If Micaiah is silenced, she cannot do anything but use this until the effect has passed.)
- In Fire Emblem Awakening, the Bond skill (learned by Brides at level 15) allows them to restore 10 HP to all allies in a 3 tile radius at the beginning of each turn. Meaning, the Bride in question can heal people near her by simply staying there.
- In Kanon, it's revealed that Mai can heal others with her tears. Unfortunately, when news of her powers spread, the people around her condemned her as a freak.
- Ness is a rare Hero example, although it is just one of many.
- Poo gets all the same healing capacities as Ness (except Lifeup Omega) and learns Healing Omega, which Ness never learns. By the end of the game, you'll probably be using him mostly for healing powers.
- Every MOTHER protagonist winds up getting the best healing skills. In fact, the protagonist of the first game never learns PSI that deals damage.
- Ryu from Breath of Fire III is another example of a hero holding the game's best healing spells. However, most will end up never using them, since his magic power is better off being saved for his dragon transformations. Most will rely on Momo to heal instead, or just stick with items.
- Tales Series:
- Raine from Tales of Symphonia is the team's healer, along with providing stat boosts and offense with the "Photon" and "Ray " spells. Kratos, Zelos, and Regal all also have secondary healing abilities.
- Mint, from Tales of Phantasia. She never gets past that stage, although she does eventually get Resurrection and a couple debuffs, which are useless.
- Farah from Tales of Eternia, despite being a fist fighter, is given limited healing abilities. In the animated side story, they're depicted as Healing Hands. Whoever holds Undine in the game also has practically all the healing magic in the party.
- Hisui from Tales of Hearts routinely uses his healing arte to patch people up out of battle, and is the game's primary healer within it. His sister Kohak eventually gains the most potent heal spells in the games, but long after Hisui's, and she never gains a good resurrection spell.
- Estelle from Tales of Vesperia is the first healer in the party. Her array of healing artes is far greater than that of either Karol or Raven. Her artes are also much more powerful. The storyline actually focuses quite heavily on Estelle's healing powers.
- Cheria from Tales of Graces earns her Healing Hands through a plot event and proceeds to found a group focused on healing those injured around the world. Sophie also has these abilities.
- In Tales of Xillia, Jude, Elize, and Leia all have healing abilities. Jude is training as a doctor, though his abilities are hindered by his underdeveloped manalobe, Elize is a magical prodigy due to her doll boosting her powers, and Leia has already finished training as a nurse. All three are even stronger in Tales of Xillia 2.
- In Tales of the Abyss, healing requires the innate ability to use the Seventh Fonon. Tear and Natalia are both acknowledged as skilled healers.
- Golden Sun:
- Mia has several offensive abilities but is primarily a healer.
- The variable class system of Golden Sun means anyone can become the healer, but the secondary healing element is the earth element (which is the one that has the Revive psyenergy), which is the element of the main hero in both games.
- Despite the class system where anyone can have healing abilities, the story treats Mia and Piers as the healers of the group due to their natural affinity with the Mercury (water) element. The third game passes this role on to Mia's son. Alex is also said to be a powerful healer, and is seen using this ability on the party. Like Mia, this ability is passed on to his son.
- Although Jenna naturally gets a fire element healing spell that heals the whole party, so she can easily play the roll of healer in the game while remaining in her natural element.
- Golden Sun: Dark Dawn introduces wind-based healing spells. Karis has a weak but practical series of multi-target spells while Sveta has a series of moderately powerful single-target spells.
- Polka from Eternal Sonata. Both Frederic Chopin and Serenade have direct healing abilities as well. Viola can heal also, though it seems to be some sort of fusion power with her bow.
- Chidori Yoshino from Persona 3 has life-giving abilities that even function on herself. She uses them to save Junpei after he is shot to death by Takaya — at the cost of her own life.
- Hogs Of War medics have this as one of their methods of healing, recovering 20 health and not ending their turn. In multiplayer mode, the medics get infinite Healing Hands, leading to something of a Game Breaker: on their turn, given enough time, they can go around healing their entire team back up to full health. They can then finish off by, say, tranquilising an opposition pig, forcing them to miss their turn when it comes round. Shoot the Medic First, indeed...
- World of Warcraft:
- Paladins have Lay on Hands as a healing ability. On a long cooldown, they can heal a target for an amount equal to the Paladin's maximum health, and, at higher levels, restore some of their Mana. However, it is suspected that either literal laying on of hands is not required... or Paladins somehow have 40-yard-long arms. One of those. For it's power, it is only usable every 20 minutes.
- Less literally, pretty all of other classes have potential methods to heal or resurrect their allies save for Death Knights, Hunters and Rogues. Even then those two classes and be Alchemists to hand potions to their allies to heal them or get Goblin Jumper Cables as an Engineer to (sometimes) revive them. The Priest, Paladin, Shaman, Monk and Druid classes in particular are designed for the concept, with a talent tree dedicated to healing allies.
- Baldur's Gate:
- Baldur's Gate II: Throne Of Bhaal introduced an item for paladins that could give extra healing to their lay on hands ability. It could then be upgraded to give them full-on resurrection once per day.
- The first game also gave even nonmagical Good-aligned PC's some minor healing spells as freebies as they unlocked more of their Bhaalspawn potential. The sequel took them away again after Jon Irenicus stole the PC's soul, but they were obsolete by that point anyhow.
- In Trauma Center, the "Healing Touch" is a mysterious power possessed by people thought to be descended from Asclepius, Greek god of medicine, which manifests as various methods of performing surgery extremely well. For Derek or Markus, the healing hands jack up his concentration, allowing him to move incredibly quickly and precisely (represented in-game as time slowing down). Nozomi's version causes the patient's vitals to improve every time she does something right (thus fulfilling this trope most directly), and Valerie's freezes the patient's vitals in place regardless of any injuries that happen.
- Suikoden II has the protagonist using the Bright Shield rune. Out of four possible powers, the first heals the party, the second does moderate damage to enemies, the third heals the party more with the chance of giving Fury status (which doubles attack damage), and the fourth uses 2000 HP to heal the party, with any leftover HP being used to harm the enemy. It will get to the point that your protagonist is your primary healer, especially when he has to be in the party 99.9% of the time.
- Dungeon Siege has a Nature Magic spell called healing hands.
- Riley from Dubloon, aside from lightning spells, has a repertoire of healing and alcohol restoring spells.
- This is used as a gameplay mechanic in Ghostbusters: The Video Game , and it gives ALL of the characters this quality by virtue of a "Positron Restore System" embedded in the suit and gloves.
- The medic class in Global Agenda has a healing gun, healing grenades, and a "healing wave" - an inexplicable healing power that is an even-more inexplicable AOE effect emanating from the medic.
- Athena Asamiya has this as a part of her Psychic Powers, but it's rarely used in-games and/or in-story. It's seen in Athena: Awakening From the Ordinary Life (heals her muggle friend Rika), in KOF:G (attempts to heal Chizuru but is interrupted by Goenitz), in the XII manhua (heals Kyo), as a Striker in KOF 99 (heals the playing character when called upon), or as an optional part of her Psychic 10 Desperation Move in KOF 2003 (heals herself).
- Joe Dever's Lone Wolf: The Healing disciplcine allows Lone Wolf to do this.
- Super Mario RPG has two characters with healing abilities.
- Mallow can summon a cloud (with a happy face, in typical Mario fashion) that rains on people to heal them.
- Princess Toadstool joins your party knowing two healing spells by default; the single-target Therapy, and the less powerful but multi-target Group Hug (making this trope very literal). Both of them remove Standard Status Effects as well as restoring HP.
- South Park: The Stick of Truth: This is Butters' special ability, which involves him literally patting you on the back and assuring you that everything's going to be OK. Note that this is the only time your character smiles in-game.
- Tristram of Earthsong can do this. And, given that his power is to treat Life Energy as a Liquid Asset, he can reverse it into Harming Hands too.
- In an example similar to Tristram from Earthsong, Warrick from Namesake can also heal others. He is referred to as a "mender", someone who can repair things and people easily.
- Dimension of Lame Gwynn from Sluggy Freelance.
- In Emergency Exit:
- In Harkovast, the priestesses of Hevalla use magical healing water to return Sir Muir to the fight (and just in time, as a bad guy breaks through the door a few moments later!)
- Subverted in The Longest Sojourn where the Havenhealers' healing crystals don't just heal the patient but also saps lifeforce from the same patient to do the healing. And leaves a whole range of nasty side effects. Oh and it can kill the patient if they were too weak to begin with.
- PS238 has Vern, one of the meta-prodigies in the Rainmaker Program. He is the only healer seen on-screen so far, and after pulling Guardian Angel's soul back into her body is referred to as Messias-level healer.
- As Goblins is set within D&D rules, most of the above for clerics, druids and paladins applies here.
- Charby the Vampirate features:
- Mye, a zombie witch. While she is proficient in making potions, she can also literally kiss things better, much to the chagrin of her boyfriend and brother - other characters abuse Mye's helper's syndrome shamelessly.
- Kavonn, the Hat Mage. Kavonn wields a massive ankh-topped staff and can cast highly varied spells, including healing ones. Lesser artifacts from the Hat can also grant healing magic.
- Zerlocke, a low-rank elite. As elites are nigh immortal and invulnerable with a whole set of other abilities, general magic is frowned upon. Zerlocke was one of the few to bother and possibly knows healing spells.
- Underling coils, actually
- Memoria He heals up the children.
- Matty gets these toward the end of the next chapter.
- Tamuran the knife cut heals up again as soon as the blood is taken.
- Lorelei in The Fourth has saved her friends a number of times with these.
- This is a standard magic type in Dominic Deegan. Gregory, in particular, starts out seemingly powerless but soon escalates his super-healing to ridiculous levels until it gets permanently removed. He can near-instantly heal himself and anyone nearby, but this isn't as great as it sounds, as he often ends up healing his enemies by mistake. One of the orcs also has this power, but healing people injures him.
- White Mage in 8-Bit Theater. Red Mage, too, though he rarely uses it because his teammates are all some combination of indestructible and insufferable, and he's too much of a nutcase to consider healing himself.
- As in Goblins above, The Order of the Stick uses the D&D version. Durkon is the main recurring culprit.
- In Sinfest, Lil' E accidentally surfs to a site of Jesus's healing people.
- Kieri in Slightly Damned tries to use healing magic on Buwaro when he is apparently killed by an electrical attack by a Seraph. It's more an act of desparation, as she admits she lacks skill at it. the way she administers it even looks like a Magical Defibrillator. Fortunately, it worked.
- In Rusty and Co., Madeline, being a paladin, has this.
- In Corgi Quest, Privious specializes in this due to her role as a Cleric. Bonabelle can also cast Cure Light Wounds in a pinch.
- In The Gamers Alliance, Unithien and Nesa use their white magic to heal others.
- Shandala, heroine of Broken Saints, demonstrates this on more than one occasion, first healing her brother Tui, then Oran.
- In the Whateley Universe, several characters have healing powers:
- Nikky "Fey" Reilly can cure serious wounds with magic.
- Chou "Bladedancer" Lee can use Taoist "chi" healing techniques through "laying on of hands".
- Every time Kerry Ellison heals someone, she takes on their illness or injury. And all the illnesses and injuries she's ever healed before. At least the older healings manifest themselves to a lesser and lesser degree over time, but it's still pretty grisly when she heals a cancer victim, after healing a blind person and a person with crippling arthritis and... Even worse, near the end of her intro novel, she's being held captive and forced to do this. And she's only 14.
- Lifeline and Panacea from the Global Guardians PBEM Universe are both superheroes who (among other powers) are capable of healing with a touch. Amnesty, the Anthropomorphic Personification of Mercy, can not only heal with a touch, she can raise the dead completely. Mercy, another Anthropomorphic Personification (this time of the popular view of angels), can also heal with a touch and raise the dead, though she is very reluctant to do the latter. Empath heals by taking on injuries and illnesses into her own body. Dream Sword heals through manipulation of the chakras. Saba Devatao can heal injured people, but only by transferring the injury to a healthy person.
- In Trinton Chronicles only one person, Coatl, actually has this power and seeing as how its a super rare ability in this world, she keeps it well hidden from everyone she doesn't trust.
- Joan Banks's story series Absolute Power stars a man who, having wasted the first two of Three Wishes from a genie, chose this for his third wish. As it turns out, this means that he can "heal" anything if he can think of it as a disease. This is exactly as powerful as it sounds.
- Discussed in a Cracked article: 7 Video Game Healing Methods Least Likely to Actually Work
- In In Serein, spontaneously discovering she can do this to a wounded traveller in need is one of Isca's first acts of magic and an important ability throughout the whole series. She later teaches it to other people and learns that her way of doing it is a big improvement on the Serein's magic, because that was abstract and un-intuitive and took decades to learn while her method could be picked up by others in mere days.
- Panacea from Worm has this power, though it's only one application of her ability to exert total control over the biology of any living organism.
- Unusually she considers this a form of Blessed with Suck as she feels crippling guilt if she isn't healing 24/7 and feels bad about wanting a life of her own.
- She also fears the other potential uses of her power and refuses to treat brain injuries for fear of causing Mind Rape.
- Lizardtail of the Ambassadors can heal at long range.
- Othala, white supremacist villain, has the power to give other people powers. This includes giving them a Healing Factor.
- Scapegoat has a variant whereby he transfers wounds to himself (and possibly then to an enemy). He really hates his power.
- Katara in Avatar: The Last Airbender as a specialty of the Waterbenders. In contrast with the "Wound-B-Gone" effect this ability usually has, people tend to recover from major injuries gradually over several healing sessions.
- Korra, the Avatar from the sequel series, also has this ability and was trained by Katara herself.
- Rex from Generator Rex has the ability to cure EVO's from their mutations.
- Serena from Dino Riders has this ability, which she uses both on her teammates and on the dinosaurs she befriends.
- Raven in the Teen Titans animated series has this ability, but is rarely seen using it. Most notably, she heals Beast Boy's broken leg in "Final Exam".
- Bloom from Winx Club gains this power in season 2.
- She Ra Princess Of Power gains this ability, much to the surprise of He-Man who only got super strength.
The Nostalgia Chick:
Oh Christ, now she heals the sick. Movie, would you please end before she walks on water?
- In Rollbots, this is the power of Penny, Koto, and presumably the rest of the Kuzuri.
- Princess Kida heals Milo Thatch's wounds with her hands in Atlantis The Lost Empire after the latter is badly injured.
- Rose Quartz, from Steven Universe had healing tears, which her son, Steven, is disappointed that he didn't inherit. He does, however, have healing spit, which while gross, is actually more useful, when you think of it.