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Adopted to the House

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A character sees a friend or family member or encounters a stranger who is down on his luck, probably homeless and maybe jobless, and he has no place to go. The person may be an orphaned child or a teen thrown out of their home, or someone who's faced a major loss, such as divorce or the death of a spouse. The Good Samaritan takes pity on him/her and invites them to live in his home until he can bounce back and find his own place. In some cases, the person is treated like a member of the family and a close bond develops. Sometimes, though, the guest overstays their welcome, which may be Played for Laughs.

This is Truth in Television for a lot of people, at least with helping friends and family. Compare Recruited from the Gutter, in which one character might invite another character to live with them in order to gain access to that character's skills, and Happily Adopted, which involves formal adoption. Might be related to Staying with Friends. Can sometimes lead to the sap becoming The Thing That Would Not Leave. Financial Test of Friendship is a subtrope for when this occurs with a rich person who has lost their wealth. See also Pretty Freeloaders.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Teppei from Inu Baka has a bad habit of taking home "strays" because he pities them, and most of his current staff have lived in his apartment at some point in their employment. Kentaro was kicked out of his house for wanting to be a musician instead of following his parents' wishes but failed to earn a living with his passion, Suguri is a naive Country Mouse who has never lived apart from her parents before and doesn't know how to navigate the city on her own. Momoko lives with her Domestic Abuser and has to move out when the latter tries to harm her dog. Teppei eventually rents another unit in the apartment building to serve as the girls' dormitory (the rent is cut out from their wages), although Kentaro still stays with him.
  • Backfires spectacularly in JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Phantom Blood when the rich George Joestar adopts the poor Dio Brando after mistakenly believing that his father, Dario Brando, helped save his life (in actuality, he was trying to steal from him). A dying Dario reminds Dio that George is in his debt, and convinces him to call in the favor and get adopted. Dio repays that kindness by killing George.
  • School Rumble: Downplayed. Mikoto finds Harima on the streets during the Christmas break because he was locked out of the apartment he shared with his cousin while she went on vacation. She tells him he's welcome to stay at the Suou home, but his pride makes him decline. She then employs a Batman Gambit, buying a good many groceries for a "family party" and tells him she bought too much and asks him to help her carry them, which he does. Once they're at the Suou place, she tells him he can stay, just tell people he's an employee of her family (and she provides him a uniform). This comes into play a few days later, as Eri is also crashing with Mikoto trying to escape an arranged marriage, and when the Sawichika family butler tracks Eri there, Mikoto presses Harima into service, having him flee on a motorbike with Eri.
  • "Kamisama Kiss": When Nanami has been kicked out of her house by due to her dad's gambling ways, while sitting at a park bench she runs into a man being chased by a dog. After she helps him out and tells him her sad story, he kisses her forehead and leaves. Turns out, he was a God (Kamisama) and has transferred his responsibilities to her, and now she has become a God, and now lives in his temple with his servants/attendants.

    Comic Books 
  • Relative Heroes: Well, adopted to the Winnebago. The newly orphaned Weinbergs welcome the runaway Damara to join them as they go on a road trip across the US while fleeing the authorities and trying to prevent their remaining family from being broken up or locked up.
  • In Runaways, the later Runaways (Victor, Xavin, and Klara) were all characters who had nowhere else to go before the Runaways took them in.
  • In Tintin The Castafiore Emerald, Capt. Haddock insist that the Romani travelers come live on his land after finding out that they've been reduced to living at the local dump.

    Comic Strips 
  • In one strip of Garfield, Jon's friend Lyman shows up at his house and begs him to let him stay. Jon agrees, and so Lyman and Odie (who was originally his dog) move in.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • The former Trope Namer is the Blustery Day segment of The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh when Pooh invites Piglet to live with him after the latter gives his house away to Owl.
  • Wreck-It Ralph:
    • At the end of the movie, Felix and Ralph invite the characters from unplugged games to stay in the Fix-It Felix Jr. game and even let them participate in a bonus stage.
    • In the sequel Ralph Breaks the Internet, when the Sugar Rush machine is unplugged, people around the arcade offer to take the game characters into their games until the machine can be fixed. Particularly Felix and Calhoun decide to adopt the 14 racers other than Vanellope. Hilarity ensues.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Bride of Frankenstein, the blind man lets the Creature stay in his house for a while. Versions of this appear in the various retellings of the story, though it's averted in the original where the blind man's son returns and drives the Creature away.
  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier has a flashback to Steve's youth, after his parents both died and he was left orphaned. His best friend Bucky offered to let Steve live with his family, free of charge.
  • In the film Down and Out in Beverly Hills, a vagrant tries to drown himself in a rich family's swimming pool and ends up staying in their house and changing all their lives for the better. This was adapted from the 1932 French film Boudu Saved from Drowning.
  • In The Godfather Tom Hagen, homeless and living on the street, is taken in by Vito Corleone at the behest of Sonny.

  • Dark Sacred Night: Harry Bosch, who helped heroin addict Elizabeth Clayton get clean in the previous Bosch novel Two Kinds of Truth, still feels responsible for her, so he's letting her stay at his house. Harry's college-aged daughter Madeline does not like this one little bit.
  • In Island in the Sea of Time, Marian Alston invites Swindapa to live with her after liberating her from the Iraiina. At the end of the first book, they adopt two baby girls orphaned by the Alban War. The second book also has several other Nantucket families, including the Cofflins, taking in orphans.
  • In The Bible, King David takes in Mephibosheth who was crippled from a childhood injury. Mephibosheth was the son of Jonathan, King David's best friend.
  • In Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Sirius Black tells Harry how he ran away from the Blacks' household when he decided enough was enough, and he lived in James' house until he could get his own place. From his account, the Potters welcomed him like a second son.
  • Oliver Twist. A couple of different households attempt this with the homeless orphaned child Oliver, but it's not until the end that they're actually successful (the previous times resulted in Oliver being stolen back by the thieves).
  • Psmith invites his friend Mike Jackson to live in his flat after circumstances force the latter to stay in a gloomy London bedsit while working at a nearby bank. After they leave the flat, Psmith convinces his father to essentially adopt Mike and pay for his education on the condition that he'll learn to manage the grounds of the family estate.

    Live-Action TV 
  • An episode of Glee had Quinn getting thrown out of her house after her parents discover that she's pregnant, so Finn and his mother invite her to stay with them.
  • An episode of The George Lopez Show had Max's friend Ricky staying with the Lopez family while his alcoholic mother is going through a breakup-induced depression. George tries to bring him back after he drives Angie's car through the wall, but he relents after seeing his troubled home life and Ricky ends up staying with Ernie at his insistence.
  • In The Odd Couple, Oscar invites Felix to move in with him after his wife kicks him out, and soon comes to regret it.
  • The Spoils of Babylon: When Jonas finds an amnesiac child wandering down the side of the road, he takes him home and eventually adopts him.
  • On The Americans, after his parents and his sister are all killed, Jared, the son of Phillip and Elizabeth's fellow operatives, goes to live with a family for whom he used to babysit.
  • In CSI: NY, Mac lets Sheldon Hawkes sleep at his apartment after he reveals that he lost all his savings in an investment scam.
  • In The New Adventures of Flipper, when Pam Blondell learns that Maya is an orphan with no one to take care of her, she lets Maya live with her and her son.
  • In Roseanne, Roseanne finds out that David Healy's mother is emotionally and verbally abusive toward him, so she decides to let him move in with her family.
  • Towards the end of Boston Public, Marla Hendrickson suffered a miscarriage. As a way of coping, she offers to let one of her more troubled students come live with her.
  • On Crisis, Megan insists on taking in Sharlene Wirth after her mother is arrested in a phony bomb scare and her father is killed by a sniper.
  • In the unaired pilot of The Big Bang Theory Sheldon & Leonard take in a woman they find on the street who had just gone through a big breakup with the man she was living with. She would have been Leonard's and/or Sheldon's love interest had the show continued in that direction.
    • In Season Eight, Stuart became the caretaker to Mrs. Wolowitz. After she died, Howard and Bernadette kept him on since he had no other place to go.
    • Raj found himself homeless after he was cut off from his father's fortune in the Tenth Season and ended up temporarily living with Leonard and Penny.
  • Literally the entire premise of The O.C.: Sandy Cohen, a public defender, takes a troubled teen from Chino, Ryan Atwood, whose brother is arrested and whose mother abandons him after, into his wealthy family in the affluent Newport Beach.
  • In the first episode of Unhappily Ever After, Jack and Jennie get divorced and he moves into a bachelor apartment. Later in the series, he's broke and she allows him to live in her basement.
  • On Royal Pains, Hank and Evan Lawson discover that they have a half-sister who's come to the Hamptons to confront their father because she's been led to believe that he abandoned her and her mother back when he was still a con artist. After discovering that she didn't have a backup plan for how she was going to return home, the brothers invite her to live with them.
    • Towards the end of the last season, Evan and Paige decide to become foster parents for a teenage girl and her siblings, to prevent them from being separated by child services.
  • In a Thanksgiving episode of The King of Queens, Doug and Carrie are at odds as to whether to allow a guy, down on his luck and waiting for assistance for his broken-down car, wait in the house. Carrie is suspicious of his general demeanor and appearance, but her dinner guests eventually prevail on her to let him in. He locks them all out and robs the house.
  • On That '70s Show, Kitty and Eric Forman allow Fez to move in after he gets kicked out of his own home, under Red's nose. When Red finds out he's been living with them, not just coming over often, a lot of things make sense to him, such as Fez taking the liberty of using their shower. Also, for much of the series' run, Hyde lived with the Formans after they found out about his neglectful mother and Disappeared Dad.
  • The Flash: Barry is taken in by the West family after the death of his mother and the arrest of his father — for killing his mother — effectively leave him an orphan. He stays with them until he grows up enough to live on his own.
  • In the backstory of The Bridge (US), Hank Wade and his wife took in a young Sonya Cross after the murder of her older sister. This was Hank's way of assuaging his guilt over shooting the man who killed her sister, which left the man with severely diminished capacities and prevented Sonya from ever finding out why her sister was murdered.
  • In the third season of Halt and Catch Fire, Cameron lives with Gordon, Donna, and their two daughters after Mutiny relocates to California. This leads to considerable tension, as Gordon increasingly feels that Donna and Cameron are ganging up on him, while Cameron begins to fear that Donna is using the offering of housing to manipulate her.
  • Alain's case in Kamen Rider Ghost starts out with Recruited from the Gutter because the gang needs someone knowledgable of Ganma World and disgraced or not, he is still their enemy and clearly only playing along out of necessity. After another round of Break the Haughty prompts him to have a Heel Realization, he decides to help stop Ganma's invasion to human world and is brought into the group for real.
  • Kikai Sentai Zenkaiger: Stacy is offered to stay at Colorful in Zenkaigers' world after defecting from Tozitendo dynasty makes him a fugitive on Kikaitopia and with nowhere to go on either world. He returns to Kikaitopia in the story's finale to help kikainoids recover after centuries under Tozitendo's tyranny.
  • Playing House opens with Maggie leaving her cheating husband just before having their baby at the same time that her best friend Emma leaves her job overseas. In order to have some help in raising her daughter, Maggie invites Emma to live with her.
  • In Snowfall, Franklin lived with his white friend Rob and his dad while he was still attending school, as Rob's house was much closer to the school than Franklin's mom's apartment. Rob's dad later tries to invoke this kindness as an excuse for stealing some of Franklin's cocaine, but Franklin isn't having it.
  • In Reba, Reba lets Van move in after his own parents kick him out following his getting Cheyenne pregnant and Reba even later states that she views Van as her son.
  • In Ugly Betty, Amanda gets kicked out of her apartment after going deep into debt and maxing out her credit cards. When Betty finds her living at the MODE offices, she motivates her to invite herself to become Betty's roommate in her new apartment, where she's generally a pest but has her Pet the Dog moments (like getting a second job at a Burger Fool with a Bad Job, Worse Uniform when she loses the rent money).
  • In Cobra Kai, Daniel LaRusso gets a new teenage employee, Robby. He takes a shine to the boy and even starts teaching him some karate. After learning that Robby is living alone, being estranged from his father and having a mom who disappears for months at a time, Daniel offers to let Robby stay with his family. Robby's father being Johnny Lawrence tends to complicate things, though.

  • In The Odd Couple, Oscar invites Felix to move in with him after his wife kicks him out, and soon comes to regret it.

    Video Games 

  • In Bitter Sweet Candy Bowl, Augustus is taken in by Lucy's family both as a token of gratitude for his role in saving Lucy from her Bungled Suicide and also to allow him to focus on his studies and properly finish high school.

    Western Animation 
  • The Simpsons
    • Happened many times whenever an out-of-luck Springfielder lived with the Simpsons until they bounced back. Referenced when Kent Brockman stayed with them and Homer pointed to a wall with photos of "acquaintances who stayed with us for a short time."
      Homer: Apu sang a song. What are you going to do?
    • "Three Gays of the Condo" had Homer doubting Marge's love toward him and deciding to go live with Milhouse's father for a while, but he got driven out after getting annoyed with Kirk's (and many other lonely men) crying at night and moved into an apartment in Springfield's gay district.
    • The trope crosses over with My Significance Sense Is Tingling in "Bart Carny." After Homer invites some down-on-their-luck carnies to stay with his family, we cut to Marge and Lisa sitting in the house, with Marge suddenly trembling uncontrollably.
      Lisa: Why did you shudder just now, Mom?
      Marge: I don't know...
    • "Bartless" offers a What If? scenario in which Bart takes this role in relation to the rest of the family: in an alternate timeline where Homer and Marge only had two children, Lisa and Maggie, they find Bart with no memories of who he is and take him in while Springfield's police department searches for his parents. Although his chaotic presence complicates their lives, when the police announce they're transferring him to an orphanage, Homer and Marge realize that they don't want to give him up.
  • A famous episode of Spongebob Squarepants had SpongeBob let homeless and jobless Squidward Tentacles live in his house until he found the courage to get a job. He thought it would be about a week, but Squidward ended up taking advantage of his hospitality and stayed with him for months on end.
    • A later episode has SpongeBob offering to let the Flying Dutchman move in after his ship is wrecked. The Dutchman not only takes advantage of SpongeBob’s hospitality, but repeatedly scares him to the point that SpongeBob becomes completely desensitized to it. This leads to the ghost losing the ability to scare anyone, and the rest of the episode involves SpongeBob trying to help him get his confidence back.
  • One of the last episodes of King of the Hill had Hank discover that Principal Moss lived inside the school after his wife kicked him out, so Bill let him live in his house.
    • Luanne lives with the Hills after her mother stabbed her father with a fork. Hank tried to send her back to the trailer in one episode, but let her stay after it got destroyed by a tornado.
  • DuckTales (1987):
    • Discussed but ultimately averted in the episode "Down and Out in Duckburg, in which Scrooge has lost his fortune. The nephews suggest asking Launchpad or Gyro for lodging, but Scrooge shoots down that idea, saying that, "Now that [he's] poor, they'll treat [him] like [he] treat[s] poor people."
    • One season later in "Super DuckTales" Scrooge loses everything again, this time to the Beagle Boys after they use a remote to take over Gizmoduck's suit and make him their unwilling slave. It's played straight here, as Launchpad is more than happy to let everyone stay at his home during their difficult time.
  • Family Guy
    • One episode had Cleveland getting kicked out of the house and he stayed with the Griffins for a while.
    • Another episode had Glenn Quagmire move in after Peter's idiocy cost him his job.
    • Brian Griffin originally joined the family after Peter found him living on the street.
  • An episode of The Proud Family had the Boulevardez family stay with the Prouds after Oscar accidentally sets their house on fire.
  • An episode of The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy had Mandy and her family stay at Billy's house after he unleashed a stink bomb in her house.
  • In The Emperor's New School, Kuzco lives with Pacha and his family while he completes his schooling. In the series finale, after Kuzco finally graduates and officially becomes the Emperor, he invites Pacha and his family to live in the palace with him (which they accept).
  • In the The Fairly Oddparents episode, "Timmy's 2D House of Horror", Timmy wishes the lava in a low-budget 3D movie he watches really is 3D. The lava lands on Vicky's house and destroys it. Timmy doesn't stop it because he hopes Vicky's family will move far away. Timmy's parents invite Vicky's family to stay with them and Vicky continually makes Timmy's life a living hell.
  • Tiny Toon Adventures
    • In the cartoon, "The Weird Couple" (part of "You Asked For It, Part II"), Dizzy Devil gets washed out of his cave by a rainstorm and goes to live at Hamton's house, staying there for two months. The cartoon is a homage to The Odd Couple, with Hamton and Dizzy in the roles of Felix and Oscar, respectively.
    • In the cartoon, "Maid to Re-Order" (part of "Best of Buster Day") Buster lets Grovely and his family stay in his burrow after Montana Max fires him and kicks them out of his mansion. Of course, they are used to the high-class accommodations of Monty's mansion, and Buster decides to help Grovely get his job back.
    • In "Save the Loo Bru" from the reboot Tiny Toons Looniversity, it's revealed that Dizzy lives in the apartment above the Loo Bru. When Montana Max buys the Loo Bru and kicks Dizzy out of the apartment above it, Babs and Sweetie let Dizzy stay in their dorm room. Dizzy soon proves to be a difficult roommate by keeping Babs and Sweetie up with his loud drumming, being so messy that he makes Sweetie look like Babs, and eating Sweetie's report on the theory of toon gravity.
  • In one episode of Arthur, Mr. Ratburn's ceiling collapses from a particularly heavy snow, and so Arthur's parents invite him to stay with them until it's fixed. Arthur's friends start to think he's a Teacher's Pet as a result. Ratburn decides to mess with them by entertaining the idea of staying at their houses so now they know how Arthur felt about the situation.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog cartoons:
    • In the Sonic the Hedgehog (SatAM) episode, "The Odd Couple", Sally's house gets destroyed by Dulcy when she crash-lands into it. Sonic lets Sally, Tails, and Bunnie stay in his house and moves into Antoine's until the storm blows over and he can rebuild Sally's. Being a homage to the series of the same name, Sonic is the Oscar to Antoine's Felix. At the end of the episode, Sonic decides to rebuild Sally's house, storm or no storm. However, a tree falls on Antoine's house, quickly turning it into a Here We Go Again! situation.
    • In the Sonic Boom episode, "Can An Evil Genius Crash On Your Couch For a Few Days?" Sonic lets Dr. Eggman stay in his house while the latter's evil lair is being repaired by his robots. However, Eggman quickly becomes a nuisance to Sonic and his friends. It is later revealed that Eggman's base wasn't under renovation and he was deliberately being a nuisance to Sonic and his friends to exhaust them so they'd be too tired to stop his latest giant robot, the Obliteratorbot. However, the Obliteratorbot malfunctions and prepares to destroy Eggman's base, forcing the latter to team up with Sonic and his friends to shut it down. When Eggman's base is destroyed for real, Sonic decides to just drop Eggman off at his destroyed base.
  • Beetlejuice: Beetlejuice is forced to take in the Monster Across The Street and his dog Poopsie after an atypical B.J. prank destroys the Monster's home (episode "The Really Odd Couple").
  • In The Legend of Korra, when Mako and Bolin are kicked out of their apartment above the probending arena, Korra gets permission from Tenzin for them to live on Air Temple Island with her — only to find out that Mako's then-girlfriend, Asami Sato, beat her to the punch and invited them to live with her on her father's estate. An episode later, Asami's father has been arrested for aiding the equalists and his assets seized, so Korra invites all three of them to live with her and Tenzin's family. Bolin goes on to proclaim in season three just how much he loves being part of Tenzin's zany sitcom family. By season four, after a three-year timeskip, Asami has regained control of her father's assets and has since invited Mako and Bolin's entire extended Earth Kingdom family to live on her estate, after they lost their home in Ba Sing Se. Prince Wu, Mako's employer, goes on to join the household after Kuvira's coup derails his coronation.
  • Gravity Falls: After Gideon steals the deed to the Mystery Shack, Grunkle Stan and the twins move in with Soos and his grandma. It goes a bit further than usual for the trope, since Stan and Soos are both out of a job and his grandma at best is on a fixed income, meaning they simply don't have the budget to support three extra people and Stan has to send the kids home.
  • Big City Greens: Gloria moves into the Greens’ basement after losing her job and apartment as a result of Chip Whistler’s feud with the Greens. She eventually is accepted as a de facto member of the family, and has continued living there even now that the Greens have moved back to the country.
  • The Owl House: The entire reason that Luz Noceda opts to stay in the Demon Realm is because she finds her prospects there to be substantially more agreeable than attending "Reality Check" Summer Camp, as she isn't scorned as an incapable weirdo in the Boiling Isles, and under Eda Clawthorne's roof, Eda herself not minding looking after Luz one bit.