It's time for the second TV Tropes Halloween Avatar Contest, theme: cute monsters! Details and voting here.
This is the tendency of some characters to forgive other characters no matter how serious the wrong. This includes those other characters Jumping Off the Slippery Slope
, murdering loved ones, or raping the person granting the forgiveness. In extreme cases, a character granting Insane Forgiveness
will grant it to someone who already crossed the Moral Event Horizon
It's the principle of "forgive and forget" taken to extremes. Most viewers will be left scratching their head, wondering, "How can they just let that go?" Sometimes, other characters In-Universe
also have this reaction.
This may be a trait of the Victorious Loser
, Wide-Eyed Idealist
, Nice Guy
, or an All-Loving Hero
. Stupid Good
characters do this as well; when they do, things tend to go wrong.
You may see this when Defeat Means Friendship
Compare Easily Forgiven
, which occurs when a specific character receives this from every good guy that matters.
- Lyrical Nanoha has Fate who, shortly after her own atonement and Precia's defeat, offers to save Precia from dying because Precia raised her like a daughter. After repeatedly abusing Fate, attacking the familiar Fate worked so hard to create, and nearly causing the deaths of countless numbers of people, most objective observers would say that Precia wasn't worthy of Fate's consideration.
- In Little House with an Orange Roof, protagonist Shoutarou tends to stress forgiveness way too often, such as when an adult man strikes his 5-year-old-step-daughter-to-be hard enough to knock her over.
- Goku from Dragon Ball Z has a long list of people who've tried to kill him. Most of these people become his True Companions later and after that happens, he never brings up their previous transgressions.
- Naruto toward Sasuke, after the latter has done everything but stab a puppy onscreen. He also tries to do this with Tobi/ Obito Uchiha, the man who has led an active campaign to wipe out all life on the planet and has ruined or killed countless people. His reasoning for this? Basically because he wanted to be Hokage at one point and there is still some good in him. And because he's still pining after his Posthumous Character love interest. Naruto does, however, say that Tobi's actions are inexcusable, that despite having once had the same goal, Tobi's actions go against all of Naruto's principles (Tobi declares a desire to take a "shortcut", so to speak, while Naruto thinks there are no shortcuts), and Naruto believes Tobi should accept punishment for his crimes.
- One Piece has Luffy who has on several occasions forgiven old enemies upon meeting them again, and has recruited one of them to his crew when she asked. However, he does have limits, and when the transgression is too great such as tearing up a friend's beloved country and forcing her into an emotional breakdown, he won't trust the person until he's proven himself enough. note
- In the Yu-Gi-Oh! second anime (or at least the dub), Kaiba instantly forgives the Big Five for trying to kill him, or at least decides to hold off calling the police until after trying out this new virtual reality device they've invented. In the original version, he makes it clear that he knows that they will retaliate if he merely tries to dispose of them, and believes that he will beat them at their own game, making it a case of arrogance, rather than forgiveness.
- Ranma ½: Ranma Saotome has forgiven and really helped out many people who've tried to kill him, have kidnapped a loved one, or both. Does this guy never hold a grudge?
- Code Geass: Ohgi still forgives Villetta, then a Britannian spy, for trying to kill him while she still hasn't given up trying to do so.
- Enju Aihara from Black Bullet. Despite her severe trust issues and Dark and Troubled Past, she holds no hatred or grudge against anyone and forgives people easily. In fact, she not only forgives her former enemies easily, she also befriend them. This is evident when she forgives and befriended Tina Sprout despite the fact that Tina attempted to kill Seitenshi and even brutally injured Enju at one point.
- The first Silk Spectre of Watchmen forgives her attempted rapist, the Comedian, and even later sleeps with him consensually. Whether this counts as "true" forgiveness or just Stockholm Syndrome is very much a matter for interpretation, although Doctor Manhattan considers it "a miracle" which is sufficiently noteworthy as to make it worth the trouble to return to Earth and attempt to save humanity from nuclear war.
- In FoxTrot, Paige frequently babysits Ms. O'Mally's preschool daughter Katie, despite the fact that Paige is a horrible babysitter that no sane parent would trust with a child. The earliest example was when Paige gave Katie a huge piece of chocolate cake, making her too hyperactive to control. Another time, Paige watched Jerzy Spaniel in front of Katie, teaching Katie foul language. The worst example was the time Paige fell asleep while watching her; Katie started playing with scissors as she dozed. (Fortunately, Paige woke up before a disaster occurred.) Still, for some reason, the worst punishment Paige has yet to receive is having to pay for Katie's dress that was ruined in that last incident, and Ms. O'Mally continues to hire her for some reason, as recently as November 2013, when Paige narrowly averted another disaster, giving her what she thought were Peter's old preschool video games. (They were actually his violent M-rated games that he had put in innocent-looking casings to keep them hidden from their mother; of course, you can probably blame that one on Peter, and the last panel does suggest Paige managed to call them before Katie played any.)
- In The Silmarillion, Manwë forgiving Melkor is a borderline example—even most of the other Valar thought it was a bad idea. It was a Good Cannot Comprehend Evil situation. When Melkor rose up again, waged war in Middle-Earth for centuries and then asked for forgiveness a second time, the Valar just chucked him into the void outside of the universe.
- According to the New Testament, Jesus, and by extension God, would be an example of this. That's provided the sinner is genuinely contrite, asks for forgiveness and accepts salvation. If they don't, there's a very different result...
- In Smallville, Chloe Sullivan forgives Lionel off-screen for trying to kill her. Twice. In Fracture, she dies saving Lex Luthor. Luckily, she has Resurrective Immortality.
- Tori Vega of Victorious always seems to be able to let Jade West's behavior slide, no matter how awful that behavior might seem to the viewer. One episode even features a truly bizzare example of What the Hell, Hero? where the person being forgiven is the same person calling Tori out for it.
- The Tenth Doctor from Doctor Who does this selectively. Unfortunately, the probability of his granting forgiveness is directly related to the horrors the person he's forgiving has committed, and often granted without there being a Heel-Face Turn from the other party.
- On True Blood, Sookie's Love Makes You Dumb is arguably bordering on this when it comes to Bill's various dodgy deeds.
- Chuck: It seemed like this trope applied to Agent Shaw and Sarah until The Reveal that he had been faking his forgiveness so he could get a chance to kill her: " You killed my wife. Did you really think I'd be okay with that?"
- In Noob, Sparadrap is quite prone to this. This is best seen when his reaction to his Manipulative Bastard guildmate setting up a Face Heel Revolving Door boils down to : "Happy you're back, I was starting to miss you". Perhaps justified in that this happended on a MMORPG, but in reality Sparadrap is one of the few characters not considering the game as Serious Business.
- In Mozart's Don Giovanni, Donna Elvira is willing to forgive everything if Giovanni just loves her. Also, surprisingly, despite all his scariness, the commander. What do you do if someone tries to rape your daughter, kills you and mocks your grave and you know this man has just a few more ours to live? Gloat back, just wait to really enjoy just seeing him go to hell? Of course not, you come back from the grave in a desperate attempt to save his soul from hell...