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- Forbidden Planet is The Tempest IN SPACE!, with Prospero replaced by Dr. Edward Morbius.
- The Black Hole had the lost scientist Dr. Reinhardt alone on a giant ship full of robots some of who turn out to be the original crew with mind-control implants, plus big robot Maximillian as The Dragon. The eponymous black hole is the Negative Space Wedgie.
- A New Hope has Luke 'accidentally' meet Obi-wan Kenobi. Later it transpires that Kenobi has been keeping a close eye on Luke, and their meeting was no accident.
- BIONICLE: in "Riddle of the Great Beings", Tarduk and his group, on their their journey to Northern Bara Magna, encounter Surel, a warrior thought lost from the Core War.
- The Mysterious Island by Jules Verne is a sequel to 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea in which five American balloonists are marooned on an island in the South Pacific. They eventually discover the aged Captain Nemo still living in the Nautilus, which is hidden in a cave under the island. Nemo turns out to have been behind a number of strange but helpful events in the story
- In The Island of Doctor Moreau by H.G. Wells, the protagonist discovers Dr Moreau, formerly an eminent physiologist in London, experimenting with the uplift of animals to humans through painful surgery.
- In the World of Warcraft novel Cycle of Hatred, Jaina Proudmoore is looking for a place to create a settlement and stumbles on a hidden shack protected by powerful wards. After bypassing the wards, she discovers Aegwynn, the only female Guardian of Tirisfal and Jaina's childhood hero. Aegwynn ends up helping Jaina defeat a demon and becomes her secret advisor.
- In Everworld, Merlin follows the characters around, trying to capture Senna; and when he is encountered, it is often this trope. He means no harm to the characters other than Senna; and even with Senna, he wishes she would understand that his attempts to capture her are for the greater good of both Everworld and Senna's own safety (she doesn't ever see it this way).
Live Action TV
- Star Trek: The Original Series used this a couple of times:
- "Metamorphosis": Lost scientist Zefram Cochrane, inventor of the warp drive, is discovered by the Enterprise.
- "Requiem For Methuselah": Mr. Flint owns a planet in the Omega system. He has a number of robots as servants and a beautiful female ward named Rayna Kapec. He has tremendous technological power, enough to destroy the Enterprise. He has two dark secrets. The first is that he is an immortal man from Earth and is thousands of years old. The second is that his ward is not human, but actually an android robot in female form, and he needs to have her emotions wakened so she will love him. Her name may be a reference to Karel Čapek, who coined the word "robot".
- Babylon 5: Sheridan meeting Lorien on Z'ha'dum. Lorien had been living there for millennia, and as he was the First One, the Shadows had built their stronghold around this place out of a largely-forgotten veneration. Sheridan was the first of the young races to "come this far" and actually meet Lorien, who then became instrumental in helping him. Since he has some powers that might be described as "supernatural", one could say he's a "lost wizard" of sorts. Lorien has no sinister motive, but that doesn't stop Garibaldi suspecting him of one.
- The Tempest. Wizard Prospero is the exiled Duke of Milan with Ariel and Caliban as his slaves and Miranda as the daughter. Prospero starts out intending to revenge himself on the shipwrecked party, but changes his mind after Miranda falls in love with one of them.
- Charles Ludlam's play Utopia, Incorporated borrows liberally from the plot of The Tempest, and thus has Anarch, leader of the utopian island (with beautiful daughter).
- Up by Pixar has the explorer Charles F. Muntz with a huge pack of talking dogs living in his airship. In the No, Mr. Bond, I Expect You to Dine scene the cook is one of his dogs.
- Played for Laughs in Shrek the Third. Merlin is portrayed as a mentally unstable teacher who was forced to leave the school where he taught.
- On Surf's Up, after Cody gets hurt surfing, lifeguard Nani takes her to her uncle Zeke, a reclusive hermit living in the jungle, to recuperate. Eventually, Cody recognizes Zeke for who he really is - his childhood surfing idol Big Z, who faked his own death to get away from the limelight.