Restored My Faith In Humanity
Bob long ago learned the painful lesson that Humans Are Bastards
. They kill each other over the most trivial of reasons and treat anyone who is different as an outcast.
And so Bob has given up on them, perhaps to the point of becoming the villain or even the Big Bad
And then along comes Alice, a shining example of why humans aren't that bad after all
. She'll listen to Bob's rhetoric about how humans are unworthy to live, smile, and retort with an impassioned speech about everything good about humanity
or she'll just show him how wrong he is through her actions.
Bob will come to see that maybe he was wrong about humanity all along (it's very rare for Bob to accept simply that Alice in particular isn't so bad, or, if he does, he's missing the whole point
), perhaps performing a Heel-Face Turn
or sacrificing himself to save humanity.
See All-Loving Hero
, Messianic Archetype
and Purity Sue
for three character types Alice is likely to fall under.
Anime and Manga
- Aoyama Masaya in Tokyo Mew Mew acts like the nicest person on the planet as a defense mechanism, and secretly hates humans while being unaware that he himself isn't human at all. He starts to see Ichigo as "different" when she steps out of her comfort zone to understand him more — something she really doesn't want to do at first — and, by the end of the series, he sacrifices himself (and gets better) to save the entire world.
- In Gankutsuou, when it seems to Albert that everyone is lying and good people are helpless to do anything, a letter from his dead friend Franz restores his faith in humanity, and he in turn restores The Count's humanity.
- Ceres from Ayashi no Ceres starts out despising humanity (especially men) for what had been done to her in the past. As the series progresses, Ceres learns that humans aren't evil, just flawed, and her faith in the human soul was restored from watching Aya and her friends and loved ones.
- Doctor Manhattan in Watchmen, though for him it's Humans Are Boring and Predictable. When the Silk Spectre finally breaks down upon realizing the Comedian is her father, he realizes that Humans, against all improbability, managed to live - and that's more than enough to realize that Earth needs him.
- The High Evolutionary's plans to wipe out humanity were once waylaid by the Hulk's determination to survive in spite of everything.
- In Grimm Fairy Tales, the Wicked Witch Belinda shows her friend Sela around a beach and explains that Humans Are Bastards by pointing out Jerk Jocks who bully others, a shallow girl who Really Gets Around, etc. When a building collapses, everyone Belinda pointed out immediately rushes over to help. The jocks use their strength to clear rubble and pull people to safety, and the shallow girl turns out to be a highly qualified doctor. Belinda gets disgusted and leaves, but Sela is amazed and is so touched that she decides to help too.
- Jean Valjean, in Les Misérables, after being put in prison for almost twenty years for a minor infraction, is wandering the streets of a small town looking for somewhere to spend the night after a day in which nobody will pay him full wages or rent a room to him because he is a convict. Nobody will let him even stay on their stoop, but one person points out the door of the local bishop. He is given pride of place at the bishop's table, a room for the night, and respect as a fellow human being. However, this trope doesn't take effect until he steals the bishop's silver and makes a run for it, and instead of denouncing him to the police, the bishop actually gives him the rest of the silver as a gift. Cue Heel Realization, My God, What Have I Done?, and redemption. Valjean goes on to become one of the most benevolent and just characters in fiction.
- Bartimaeus, the demon of The Bartimaeus Trilogy is given faith in humanity when he meets Ptolemy, the only human who ever treats him with respect, turning him into both The Woobie and a Noble Demon.
- In Smallville, Clark usually regards himself as human, but when something makes him doubt it, Chloe is always there to pull him back.
- Inverted and then subverted in House. House has a deep faith in the negative attributes of humanity. His favorite phrases are "everybody lies" and "people don't change." Cameron, and later Thirteen, try to prove him wrong whenever possible. However, just about every patient House has lied to him and usually also the patient's family.
- Doctor Who: The Doctor is an...interesting case. He'll occasionally go on a very vehement Humans Are the Real Monsters phase, calling them violent, selfish and stupid, and then, something will happen (usually sparked by his companion) that restores his faith in them. After all, there's got to be a reason he hangs out on Earth so much.
- It's actually discussed in one of Eleven's early episodes with a British soldier, why the Doctor isn't around in times when humanity needs him the most (ie, times when humanity is busy killing itself), the soldier concludes that its during those times that the Doctor loses his faith and pretty much looks away in shame. Still, he does bounce back into the 'humans are awesome!' category shortly thereafter.
- In the Mork and Mindy episode, "Mork the Gullible," Mork is talked into freeing an escaped criminal who claims that he just needs to visit his sick mother and will return to turn himself back in afterward. Sure enough, Mork is arrested for freeing him and Mindy tells him that it is obvious that the crook took advantage of him and won't be back. In a genuinely moving moment, Mork tearfully agrees that he can't trust anyone again, until the crook suddenly returns as promised to turn himself in and get Mork released. With that, Mork's innocence is restored.
- One Bloom County strip had Opus wallowing in gloom, thinking he's lost the Christmas spirit forever. Portnoy appears and gives him a gift which turns out to be plastic dog-vomit. Opus hugs him, saying in total sincerity: "Thank you. You've pulled me back from the brink. I'll cherish it forever." Cue Portnoy wallowing in gloom.
- In Hatoful Boyfriend, the Bad Boys Love route reveals that this was why the heroine was attending a boys' school for birds in the first place, to prove to the sapient birds that humans could coexist peacefully with them.
- In the Tokimeki Memorial series, this is the storylines of Kaori Yae (in 2) and Taku Komori (in Girl's Side 2) in a nutshell. Thanks to their relationship with their respective games' protagonist, they get to realize that there are trustworthy people out there, and as a result they gradually open themselves to others. Takafumi Wakaouji in GS2 also claims in his ending that the heroine has restored his faith in humanity, although this seems to be a bit of an exaggeration.
- In Justice League, the Martian Manhunter flies off to what he thought was a secluded area on Earth, since after a telepathic sweep of the city, leaves him (accidentally) accessible to the petty and selfish thoughts of humanity. However, he soon notices a search party looking for a girl that has gone missing, and hearing their thoughts, as well as the lost girl, learning that humans are decent after all, after finding her returning her back to the camp. He goes another one of this of sorts, in Justice League Unlimited when Wonder Woman notices he doesn't like humans and is "cooped up" in the Watchtower. She then insists he take part in the team's mission, before announcing he's taking leave and descends on Earth to live among humans. When he returns for the Grand Finale, it's later revealed that he not only was capable of living with humans, but he was in a relationship with one.
- In Gargoyles, human ally Elisa Masa helps to restore Goliath and the Manhattan Clan's faith and trust in humanity after they had been betrayed by humans who destroyed their home and their people.
- Taken Up to Eleven in Ben 10: By the time Ben met Azmuth in "Secret of the Omnitrix", the scientist had completely given up on the whole Universe, to the point that he was willing to let it, along with himself, be destroyed. However, after seeing Ben in action, he has a Heel Realization, helps Ben win, and becomes more rational in later episodes.