->''"There's something sweet and almost kind\\
But he was mean and he was coarse and unrefined\\
And now he's dear and so unsure\\
I wonder why I didn't see it there before."''
-->-- '''Belle''', ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast''

So AliceAndBob don't know each other yet, or Alice regards Bob with either indifference or dislike. But then, she witnesses him committing -- or becomes the recipient of -- some [[PetTheDog single act of kindness]] (rescuing someone from bullies, stopping to help someone with errands, etc.) that makes her think "maybe he's not so bad after all." This causes her to develop a blossoming crush on him, or otherwise shoehorns the two towards a romantic relationship.

Psychology-wise, the trope works due to the belief on the part of the girl that only she has seen this "hidden side" of the guy, which makes her feel special and connected with him. After all, the appeal of [[AllGirlsWantBadBoys the bad boy]] is that he only acts like a dick around people other than ''you''. Savvy characters can exploit this.

Essentially, a form of RelationshipUpgrade that tends to happen very early on in the RomanceArc, if not start it entirely. RescueRomance, RescueIntroduction and ReturningTheHandkerchief are particularly common types of Samaritan Relationship Starter. A related trope is SingleWomanSeeksGoodMan, where one character is attracted to another because (s)he's usually like this.

[[AC:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
* In ''Anime/CodeGeass'', [[NaiveEverygirl Shirley]] thinks [[MagnificentBastard Lelouch]] is a cold, spoiled brat until she witnesses him helping out some strangers when no one else would, apparently a habit of his. And it wasn't just that he helped - it was that afterwards, he didn't boast or anything, he just went back to what he'd been doing as if nothing had happened. Thus begins her infamous and tragic crush on him.
** [[AllThereInTheManual When they were children]], Lelouch and Suzaku had this mutually. They had been fighting since they met, but one day, Nunnally went missing. Both of them wanted to find her, but they refused to work together - until Suzaku found her first, and Lelouch sees her laugh for the first time since their mother was killed, because of Suzaku. After that, they become friends ([[ShipTease or more]]).
* Prior to the start of ''Manga/{{Horimiya}}'', Hori only saw Miyamura as that gloomy looking long-haired guy in her class who kept to himself, always wore long sleeves, and was probably an otaku. Then he ended up helping her little brother when the latter was injured. Downplayed in that this simply led to the two of them becoming friends. The actual romance didn't come until later.
* When Shinji defeats the Angel in his first fight together with Asuka in ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion''.
** Even more so when he saves her from death by volcano by jumping into the lava without any sort of protective equipment.
** On the other hand, this eventually gets inverted: Asuka becomes allergic to anyone demonstrating kindness to her, [[DontYouDarePityMe deliberately mistaking their genuine intentions towards her as pity]].
* Played for laughs in ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'' with Ukyo; she and Ranma already have an ArrangedMarriage, but he's initially unaware and she's initially out for revenge because she thinks he abandoned her. When he interrupts her rant about being ruined for marriage and cursed to be alone forever by telling her that she's a very cute girl and will make someone a great wife someday, that's when she drops the vendetta and decides to give being engaged to him another shot. Especially because his ''[[LoveDodecahedron other]]'' ArrangedMarriage is a {{tsundere}} with whom he evidently does ''not'' get along.
* In ''{{Manga/Ratman}}'', the RebelliousPrincess character already kind of likes the hero, though she thinks of him as a wimpy kid who needs protection. Then she sees him rescue a kitten from being run over (without the benefit of superpowers) and she immediately upgrades her opinion to "has a hero's heart"--especially significant as the [[FakeUltimateHero "real" professional heroes]] ignored the situation.
** It's also happen with Haruka, who begin to appreciate [[{{Gonk}} Taishi/ Fatman]] after seeing him calming down a child using his TransformationSequence and free pizza on his own account. Taishi didn't know of this... and arranges a RescueRomance situation to impress her. HilarityEnsues. Then [[SugarWiki/HeartwarmingMoments heartwarming ensues]].
* In ''Manga/MidoriDays'', it's ''this trope'', not RescueRomance, that kickstarts Takako Ayase's crush towards Seiji Sawamura. Seiji does catch her attention after he rescues her from [[{{Delinquents}} school delinquents]], but she's still wary of him because she still believes he's a blood-thirsty fight seeker. It's only after witnessing Sawamura deliberately taking a beating without retaliating in order to save a friend and to defuse the hate the {{Delinquents}} have for him, that she falls in love with him.
* In ''Manga/WildRock'', Yuni falls into an animal trap set by Selim. Selim gets him out and gently nurses him back to health. Since they're of [[FeudingFamilies rival clans]], Yuni wouldn't have given him the time of day before this.
* Invoked in ''Manga/TheWorldGodOnlyKnows'' for the middle school girl's capture, which is mostly told from her perspective. Keima fakes being a member of the swim team and pretends to do really well and looks cool. When he disappears, she builds up a false impression of him as a really cool upperclassman (he calls it a free love potion to be a sempai), which balances against his bad reputation and has her develop a crush on him. [[spoiler:And later when he's checking for goddesses, we see that unlike all of the other girls she does not even remember him because he managed to get out the runaway spirit while barely speaking to her. Which is a good thing.]]

* In Episode 13 of the second season of ''WebVideo/DeathNoteTheAbridgedSeriesKpts4tv'', when Near reveals that Kira saved him from being molested the FoeYay subtext becomes text-[[DatingCatwoman Near's still trying to catch Kira but their dialogue gets]] ''[[DatingCatwoman very]]'' [[DatingCatwoman flirty.]]
-->'''Light:''' So... you're a virgin?
* The ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' fanfic ''Fanfic/GimmeShelter'' suggests this trope is the reason that Fancypants and Fleur de Lis are seen together. Specifically, he took her in for the night after she got caught in a storm without her coat, and asked for a date in return, which she agreed to.
* In ''Fanfic/TheVow'', Lord [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold Shen]] and Lady [[DefrostingIceQueen Lianne]] start off on poor terms and for improvement to begin, it requires for her to openly defend him against slander said about his appearance and genetic health. This — along with the realization of how lonely she feels — makes him apologize for his behavior with an ApologyGift she can accept.
* In VideoGame/DragonAgeInquisition's ''FanFic/WalkingInCircles'', Solas and Evelyn’s first interactions is her willing to be hit to keep his pendant safe. But it takes him to see her protecting an elven child and, once again, risking herself to keep him safe from his own mistake that he truly notices and develops affection for her, and much longer than that for him to actually see her as a true person with full emotional capability.

* ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast'': When the Beast fights off wolves to save Belle, she takes a second look at him. The musical number "Something There," quoted at the top of the page, is a FallingInLoveMontage in which Belle realizes this.
* ''Film/GoodDick'': The main character's relationship starts this way.
* ''Disney/TheHunchbackOfNotreDame'': Phoebus is attracted to Esmerelda from the get-go (as is basically every main character), but once he sees her stand up to Frollo and his guards to protect Quasimodo, it's definite. Esmerelda initially sees ''him'' as just another one of Frollo's mooks, but that changes for similar reasons.
* In ''Film/{{Outlander}}'', Freya reconsiders her opinion of Kainen after hearing how his valor in the fight against the bear saved her father's life.
* Deliciously played with in ''Film/RedEye'', which sort of resembles a romantic comedy in the very beginning, before turning all creepy.
* ''Film/SilverLiningsPlaybook'': Tiffany is touched when she overhears Pat standing up for her in a conversation with one of her former coworkers.
* ''Disney/{{Zootopia}}'': Nick and Judy are an intertwined example of this. Judy rescues Nick from a savage jaguar and then saves his life when they are both knocked off the Skytram platform which leads to Nick standing up to the DaChief for her sake and then opens up to her about his childhood trauma. This leads to a deep friendship forming between them.

* ''Literature/AgnesGrey'': While Agnes hears a lot of good things about Mr Weston (a new clergyman at her church), the first time she really meets him is just after he rescues an elderly widow's cat from getting shot by the local lord's gameskeeper. He stumbled upon said cat because he was on his way to visit said widow to read the bible to her to lift her spirits since she's been in poor health and worries about her immortal soul. This is, incidentally, when Agnes first starts developing feelings for him.

* This is what kickstarts the WillTheyOrWontThey for Barney and Robin in ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'', when Barney comforts Robin after she is dumped by a jerk boyfriend. They end up sleeping together, which leads to Barney realising he is in love with Robin.

[[AC:{{Religion}} and {{Mythology}}]]
* Literature/TheBible provides a variant: when Abraham's servant Eliezer is sent on a journey to find a wife for Isaac, he decides to pick the first woman who, when asked for a drink, offers to draw water for his camels as well. Given how physically exhausting it was to lug water out of a well for so many animals, the point was to pick a woman willing to go out of her way to help anyone in need.

* In the ''VideoGame/NeverwinterNights'' mod ''[[VideoGame/TheAielundSaga The Aielund Saga]]'', Criosa really starts to consider the male player character in this manner if you take the heroic dialogue options when helping out the dwarves at the start of chapter 3.
* A non-romantic example: in ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'', Hawke meets his/her lifelong best friend Varric when the dwarf apprehends a pickpocket who has stolen Hawke's money pouch. It's later clarified that Varric knew who Hawke was (thanks to their reputation) and had specifically intended to meet them, but the pickpocketing gave him an unusual way to introduce himself.

* [[FilleFatale Larisa's]] relationship with [[GiveGeeksAChance Landon]] in ''Webcomic/SandraAndWoo'' was kicked off when he helped her pass a math test.

* ''WesternAnimation/TheSpectacularSpiderMan'', Season 2: JerkJock Flash Thompson tries to hook up with quiet and artistic Sha Shan, completely failing to woo her when he relies on his usual sports reputation and personality to attract her attention. She only begins to respond to his affections when he reports to his coach that one of his teammates was using performance-enhancing drugs during their recent championship game (specifically [[spoiler: Harry Osborn using Globulin Green, the drug that would turn Norman into the Green Goblin]]. His actions force the team to retroactively forfeit the game and lose their title, something that he had worked long and hard for (having even broken his leg for and costing him a potential scholarship), but he felt that the championship did not mean anything if had been earned dishonestly. After this, Sha begins to reciprocate his feelings.
* In ''WesternAnimation/TotalDrama Island'', Courtney finds out that Duncan is a JerkWithAHeartOfGold when she sees him tricking DJ with a replacement Bunny so DJ wouldn't be sad.