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Breaking the Fellowship

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After several internal problems, the Fantastic Four resigned, and each one took their own career. Of course, they reunited some time later.

Legolas: Hurry! Frodo and Sam have reached the eastern shore.
[Aragorn stands still and says nothing.]
Legolas: You mean not to follow them?
Aragorn: Frodo's fate is no longer in our hands.
Gimli: Then it has all been in vain! The Fellowship has failed.
Aragorn: Not if we hold true to each other. We will not abandon Merry and Pippin to torment and death. Not while we have strength left.

Our heroes are a force of nature. United, there is nothing in this world that can stand against them. Divided is another story.

Whether due to a plot device, a scheme by the villain, or internal strife, the heroes separate. They may be scattered all over the world, they may just go their separate ways, but the point is they are no longer a team. It may take multiple story arcs to get them back together. They may never get back together and even if they do, their separate adventures and tribulations will have caused them to change and drift apart in ways they could not have foreseen.

Most groups would never do this willingly because you Never Split the Party. When this happens, expect it to be the Darkest Hour, and expect the episode where this happens to be a Wham Episode.

Note: For it to count as this trope, it should be a whole arc, not just one or two episodes. If just one character leaves, or it lasts for a very short time, it falls under other tropes.

Compare Let's Split Up, Gang!, where the party temporarily splits up to tackle a problem, Party Scattering and Involuntary Group Split, where they are split up involuntarily and sent on Solo Sequences by an external force, and The Fellowship Has Ended, where the split-up becomes permanent.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • The One Piece franchise:
    • The attack of Bartholomew Kuma at Sabaody Archipelago scatters the Straw Hat crew to the four winds. The crew meets up again after the two year timeskip. See Party Scattering.
    • Happens in the sixth movie Baron Omatsuri and the Secret Island. As the games progress, the Straw Hats' friendly and tight-knit relationship becomes strained and they start to fight amongst each other more and more. It got bad enough that at one point, they all split off to find their missing crew mates. This was intentionally done by the Baron who wishes to break any pirate crew's spirit before feeding them to Lily Carnation.
    • When Jimbei became a Warlord of the Sea, Arlong detested the idea of becoming a dog of the World Government so he and the original Arlong Pirates left, followed by Macro and his gang.
  • Following the defeat of Etemon in Digimon Adventure, the Digidestined separated and scattered throughout the Digital World. When Tai returns, he has to spend a whole arc finding them and getting them back together.
    • They actually went through this a couple of times. The first was when they first encountered Devimon, who split them up. Then there's the aforementioned Etemon example. While searching for the eighth child back at home, some of Myotismon's forces kept them divided for a short time. Finally, in the Dark Masters arc Matt went off on his own, Joe and Mimi went off another way, and the group doesn't properly reunite until just before the very of end of the series.
  • In Slayers Try, the group is divided for a few episodes when Valgaav's plan to summon the Dark Lord Darkstar goes awry.
  • In Negima! Magister Negi Magi, Ala Alba was split up for a while soon after entering the Magic World.
  • Planet With: The aptly-titled "Paladin Break" arc has the Hero Antagonist taskforce Grand Paladin fall apart after discovering that 1. The Nebula aliens they've been fighting are divided into two factions with different attitudes towards humanity; 2. The main reason Nebula considers humanity a threat is Grand Paladin themselves, due to their Transformation Trinkets somehow containing the power of the Dragon that destroyed Soya's planet; 3. Once Nebula is dealt with, Grand Paladin's leader wants to use the group's power to Take Over the World and impose "absolute justice". In the aftermath the ex-Paladins gradually either die or are recruited into Nebula, with some of them developing their own powers and assisting in later battles.
  • In 20th Century Boys most of the main characters are split up after the first major Wham Episode, which ends with a 15 year Time Skip that sees the main character dead, another in prison, two presumed dead and the rest scattered.A lot of the series sees them trying to reunite.
  • In Ronin Warriors, this happens to the Five-Man Band after their first confrontation with the villain, who scatters them across the countryside and places them in prisons based on their Powered Armor's elements. It's up to the girl and the Bratty Half-Pint to find and reunite the team.
  • In Zoids: Chaotic Century, after Prozen and the Death Saurer are defeated, Van and his friends go their separate ways. Van joins the Republic military for formal Zoid pilot training, Fiona accompanies Dr. D in pursuit of the Zoid Eve, and Irvine and Moonbay return to their mercenary and trading ways, respectively. They all reunite 2 years later in Guardian Force, however.
  • Villains they may be (at least they want to be), Pokémon: The Series's Team Rocket is also a very good example of True Companions. However, there are still times that they couldn't tolerate each other, resulting in a breakup (temporary, anyway, they barely last an episode). "The Ole' Berate and Switch" and "Noodles: Roamin' Off" are notable examples.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist, Colonel Mustang has a very close-knit group of five hand-selected subordinates, who are unquestionably loyal to him and to each other, and are working feverishly to help him with his long-term goals. To disrupt his plans, the villains break up his team and send them to where they can't help him. Three of the men are sent to distant outposts; one, recently paralyzed in the line of duty, is discharged from the hospital and sent back to his family's home; and the fifth, the lone female, is forced to become the personal assistant of one of the villains in order to hold her hostage for Mustang's good behavior. Of course, it doesn't really stick.
  • In Saint Beast, the formerly inseparable Saint Beasts are drawn apart after four of them betray the other two as a result of being Brainwashed and Crazy and Judas and Luca get sent to hell. Then, after shaking off the brainwashing and plotting to save their friends the other four are are betrayed in turn by the goddess, separated and Taken for Granite.
  • Berserk: After Guts defeats Griffith and earns his freedom from the Band of the Hawk, everything begins to take a turn for the worse. Griffith suffers from an emotional breakdown and gets his ass landed in the Tower of Rebirth for a year after an indiscretion with Princess Charlotte. The King then declares the rest of the Hawks outlaws, to be hunted down without mercy. During this time, many of the Hawks are either killed or just abandon the group, leaving only a small amount of dedicated followers. A year later, Guts returns, bringing back a small glimmer of hope when the Hawks, under the leadership of Casca, reveal to Guts that they are about to execute Operation: Rescue Griffith with the hopes of restoring Griffith to his former glory and bringing the Hawks back together. Unfortunately, a year of horrible torture has taken its toll on Griffith, effectively quashing everybody's hopes. And then things go From Bad to Worse as Griffith himself loses all hope and a certain Artifact of Doom returns to him just in time for the Eclipse...
  • In Hunter × Hunter, the main characters have parted ways for very long periods of time, with Gon and Killua continuing to travel together while Leorio and Kurapica go off on their own individually. The first time this happened was after the Zoldyck Family arc, and the true companions eventually met up again in the York Shin Arc. The second time, it takes much longer for Gon and Killua to meet up with Leorio, and even then, Gon and Killua go their seperate ways and Leorio meets up with Kurapica some time later.
    • This also happens to whatever group of allies Gon and Killua join up with during a given arc (Biscuit, Goreinu, Tsezgerra's team and Hisoka in the Greed Island Arc, and Morel's team during the Chimera Ants Arc). The group itself usually stays together while Gon and Killua leave to go on their next adventure.
  • Happens three times in Rurouni Kenshin:
    • First, Kenshin decides to leave for Kyoto himself, triggering a Heroic BSoD in Love Interest Kaoru.
    • Then, Kenshin does this again when he gets a Heroic BSoD when Kaoru is apparently murdered.
    • Finally, by the end of the series, Sano is a fugitive, Megumi has gone back to her hometown, Aoshi and Misao returned to Kyoto, and it's implied that one day Yahiko will set out to blaze his own path. They still do meet up for reunions, though.
  • In Naruto, Sasuke's betrayal of Konoha caused a seemingly permanent example of this for the original Team 7. Partially subverted in that the remaining members (Naruto, Sakura, and their sensei Kakashi) reunite after the Time Skip, and Sasuke is replaced with Sai.
  • Tokyo Ravens: Harutora leaves his high school friends after he regains his memories as Yakou Tsuchimikado.
  • After the battle with Tartaros in Fairy Tail, Natsu and Happy set out on a training journey right before Makarov disbands the guild, causing everyone else to go their separate ways, with a select few joining different guilds. Once Natsu and Happy find out what happened while they were away, they waste no time Putting the Band Back Together.
  • In the sequel to Brave10, just before the Battle of Ueda, Jinpachi leaves out of anger over Ana's treatment and Kamanosuke disappears after some very cutting remarks from Saizo. With the Braves short-handed, they go into a battle where Seikai dies, Isanami chooses to leave and become Izanami to protect the rest of the Braves from Susanoo, Ana gets so badly hurt protecting Ueda she's in a coma, and in the aftermath Yukimura, Rokuro and Benmaru are forced to live in exile, and Sasuke, Kakei, Hanzo and Saizo all wander searching for their lost members.
  • For a change, Fujiko's antics in The Mystery of Mamo get Lupin to swear off her — until she's found abandoned in the wilderness and The Dulcinea Effect kicks in. This is the last straw for both Goemon and Jigen, and the trio only barely avoids coming to blows before turning their backs on each other. (And, naturally, Fujiko's running the Wounded Gazelle Gambit for Mamo.) The gang regathers at Mamo's Caribbean island, but after Fujiko getting kidnapped and Goemon suffering a Heroic BSoD, Lupin is eventually forced to Storm the Castle alone, despite Jigen's attempts to talk him out of it (with bullets).
  • Star★Twinkle Pretty Cure ends with Ophiuchus being defeated, but at the cost of their powers. Due to the team losing their Translator Microbes, along with Lala and Yuni being aliens from different planets, Hikaru, Elelna, and Madoka had to make the hard decision to go their separate ways, though not before Lala gives one last goodbye in Hikaru's native language. However, the Distant Finale has Hikaru grow up to be an astronaut while Lala is now a Starry Sky Association investigator, meaning they would be able to reunite in the future.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds: This happens to Team 5D’s at the end. Realizing their adventures as a team have come to an end, they decide to split up so they can each follow their own paths in life. Crow and Jack return to Pro Dueling, Leo and Luna move back in with their parents, Akiza goes to study medicine abroad, and Yusei decides to stay in Neo Domino City. In the last scene of the series, the Crimson Dragon appears one final time and removes their Signer marks, marking the end of their adventures as Signers and the beginning of their new lives.

    Comic Books 
  • In Negation, after months eluding the Negation forces and having many of their number die, Kaine still wants to lead the band of fugitives back to their home universe, but the others decide to hide out on a world and make the best of it there, since they're tired of running and fighting. Only Zaida, Memi, and Lizard Lady stick with Kaine.
  • In DC Comics' Infinite Crisis, it is the deep divisions that have grown between Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman that create the power vacuum the villains seek to exploit.
  • This has happened to the The Avengers a few times.
    • First off, in the early days of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the founding line-up go their own ways, leaving only Captain America behind. He reforms with three other heroes, all with bad public reputations - Hawkeye, Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver.
    • After Roger Stern was fired in The '80s, Walt Simonson's first run involved Stern's Avengers roster being torn apart piece-by-piece (including Marrina being killed off, Monica Rambeau being viciously shoved onto a bus, Black Knight crippled and She-Hulk totally demoralised) so that Simonson could introduce his own line-up.
    • After the events of Onslaught, where Iron Man, Captain America, Wasp, Ant-Man, and Thor all appeared to die, the Avengers kept going for a little while longer, before Black Widow disbanded them.
    • Avengers: Disassembled, due to the Scarlet Witch going insane and blowing up the mansion and killing several long term members. Brian Michael Bendis used the opportunity to get rid of characters he didn't want to write and bring in his own team as the New Avengers.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics) has had the Freedom Fighters break up a number of times. The first two times they were broken up, it was King Max Acorn-mandated - he preferred Geoffery St. John's Secret Service over them. Despite the fact that Robotnik was still around in some form. The most recent time was because Sally was turned into a robot, Bunnie was Brought Down to Normal and Antoine was nearly killed.
  • The Changelings do this to the Mane Six in issue #2 of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic (IDW), and Queen Chrysalis even Lampshades this in issue #3 but by the end of issue #3, though, they're back together. Chrysalis claims that this helps her in the long run.
  • The "Breakdowns" arc of Justice League International was this for the League, despite Max Lord's efforts to avert it right at the end. Rather bizarrely, however, DC decided to let the readers vote on who would be in the new version of the Justice League that was planned for after "Breakdowns." The problem, of course, was that the readers who voted were the ones who were reading the comics, so, unsurprisingly, the new League had almost the exact same membership as the old League. The only exceptions were the addition of Superman to the JLA and Green Lanternnote  and Aquaman to the JLE, and the removal of Captain Atomnote  from the JLE.
  • The original Justice League of America ended in similar manner. Zatanna had already disappeared, Elongated Man left to spend more time with his wife, Vibe was killed off, Steel was rendered braindead, Gypsy returned to her family and Vixen resigned to try and pursue a more peaceful existence. This left the world without a Justice League for a brief period, until a new team (the aforementioned Justice League International) was formed at the end of the Legends crossover.
  • In the 2017 Runaways series, this is revealed to have happened to the team after Nico left the team to join A-Force. With her gone, the state came and took away Molly and Klara, Victor left to join Avengers A.I., and Karolina went off to college, as she no longer had anyone to care for, leaving Chase and Old Lace as the only remaining members.
  • The aftermath of Spider-Geddon leaves the Web Warriors split. With the Web of Life seemingly destroyed, Gwen is the only spider capable of traveling between universes, and after an encounter with herself, she decided to focus on protecting her own world. Spider-UK and Karn were killed, Anya is looking into the spider totems, and Spider-Punk faces the prophecy of his death he received in Edge of Spider-Geddon.
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (2008): After the truth comes out that Quill had Mantis use her powers to persuade everyone to join up quicker, they split, with only Rocket remaining to make a new Guardians team out of whoever he could find. The original line-up don't rejoin until War of Kings. The events of The Thanos Imperative end with half the line-up dead or missing in action.

    Fan Works 
  • A Growing Affection: Not the main fellowship, but Team Hizashi (Anko, Iruka, and Yugao) split up after Hizashi's death, with extremely hurt feelings. They make up and partially reunite thirteen some years later.
  • The Powers of Harmony: After Cetus and Eclipse defeat the Mane Six and their allies, the only way Luna is able to save them is to teleport them to different places around the world. While they survive, they're scattered, with no means of communication, while the villains are still in a power position.
  • The Conversion Bureau: Conquer the Stars: Between the events of the prequel Not Alone and the start of this, Fluttershy has stopped seeing Equestria's ideals eye to eye anymore. To prevent against any retaliation, she has abandoned her Ponyville residence and gone into hiding along with her animal friends. Considering she wields one of the Elements of Harmony and Equestria has just been effectively banished to an alien Death World to escape total annihilation, it goes without saying that this is downright catastrophic for the ponies.
  • In The Times They Are A-Changin' (2013), Penny Ling is forced to leave the group when her owners move away, causing the remaining pets' relationships with each other and their human friend Blythe to deteriorate.
  • Left Behind:
    • The fic opens with Crichton and Chiana being 'left behind' on Rohvu (albeit because duplicates of them were already with their shipmates); Crichton at one point reflects that he's grateful Chiana's still around so he doesn't have to completely start all over in terms of making friends and allies in the Uncharted Territories.
    • Later on, Furlow, Tokar and Reyna leave Rohvu to pursue their own agendas, leaving Crichton and Chiana on Rohvu with just Belima and Pilot, although Tokar and Reyna express hope that they will meet again later.
  • Briefly happens in Splinter, when the Angel Investigations team believe they've arrived in a parallel world where Angel has killed Cordelia and Wesley and chosen to remain with Darla with his soul intact, prompting Cordelia, Wesley and Gunn to leave Angel to try and find their own way home while Fred and Lorne stay with Angel. Ultimately Cordelia, Wesley and Gunn realise that they were wrong about the alt-Angel's motives and the timeline of when this world diverged from theirs, forcing them to acknowledge that Angel would only fall that far if he didn't have their support and leaving him is actually the worse thing for him.
  • In the Victorious fic "Second Chance, Second Choice", when a future Tori arrives in the present through Mental Time Travel, she ends up fracturing the group when she not only breaks off her first date with Jade (reasoning that she and Jade had a bad marriage in the future so it's best to end it in advance), but also reveals that Cat and Beck are currently having an affair while Cat's publicly dating Robbie. It takes the future Jade travelling back to prevent the group completely breaking up for good; Beck is advised to leave as Jade predicts he'll cheat on Cat anyway, but Cat is given a chance to show that she regrets her actions and Jade and Tori's future selves are able to get their past selves back on track.
  • The Kim Possible fic "Equal Romance 01: Tension Living" ends with Kim basically ending her friendship with Ron because a series of unfortunate misunderstandings lead to her believing that he's spent most of the recent crisis manipulating her emotions and sabotaging a potential new relationship for the sole goal of having sex with her. This misunderstanding continues until mid-way through the sequel, when Ron going into a coma leads Kim to consider the prospect of life completely without him and realise that she still cares for him, helping her start to re-assess his recent actions before she has to enter his mind to drive him out of the coma and realises that she misinterpreted previous events.
  • In The Lightning Strike, Skye ultimately decides to leave Coulson's SHIELD team after her brief affair with Harry activates her Inhuman powers, as she feels that her powers mean that her place is now with the Avengers rather than SHIELD.
  • In the Scooby-Doo fanfic The Mystery Machine, Mystery Inc has disbanded due to internal strife and other reasons. Years later, Fred comes across the aged and rusting Mystery Machine, and one by one, the gang minus Scooby, who died gravitates to the old car. Unfortunately, they don't get back together.
  • Pokémon Story: Sinnoh Journey: This happened between Aaron and Ian in the past thanks to their diametric philosophies and views of each other clashing.
  • In Raindancer, the Chiba kids are dismayed to learn that they've been placed into different classes at U.A. Eijirou and Mina ended up in 1-A, while Izuku and Itsuka are placed in 1-B. Despite this, they remain the closest friends imaginable and are constantly worrying about each other's well-being.
  • My Huntsman Academia:
    • Ren and Nora are shocked to learn that they ended up on different teams when they've been together since they were little. Luckily, they're still able to hang out between classes and missions.
    • Team ENGT all went their separate ways after graduation. Glynda decided to become a teacher at Beacon, Tsukauchi retired from being a Huntsman and became a police detective, Toshinori went off to train and help fringe settlements, while Enji went on his own journey in hopes of surpassing Toshinori.
    • Team STRQ broke up after Ozpin placed too much stress on them. Summer went on mission after mission until she never came home, Raven fled back to the bandit clan she was raised in, and Taiyang retired from active duty to raise his daughters. Qrow became an alcoholic and is the only member of STRQ to still be an active Huntsman.
  • It happens a few times in Earth-27:
    • After Silhouette is murdered and her death is avenged, the Minutemen break up. With many of its many members either retiring or dying.
    • Many Crimebusters died or went their separate ways, only briefly reuniting during the 'Manhattaning' incident.
    • The death of Jason Todd ended up leading to the dissolution of the original Titans and even the first Justice League.
    • The Bat Family breaks apart after Tim Drake's death by the Joker in 2024 caused Bruce and Selina's marriage soured where Selina takes her daughter and moves out, Stephanie Drake leaves Gotham with her child. Jason Todd leaves to travel the world, Damian goes on a killing spree, killing the Jokerz. Bruce disowns his son, so he goes to his mother Talia Al Ghul. Cassandra Cain tries to take Tim's mantle, but Bruce rejects it. Cassandra leaves Gotham.
  • Atonement provides several examples:
    • Madison breaks off from her friends Emma and Sophia following Taylor's death in the locker.
    • Super-hero team New Wave doesn't survive the death of Brandish, with its members either retiring from hero work or joining the Protectorate.
    • It's a rather twisted example, but the Slaughterhouse Nine doesn't survive its visit to Brockton Bay. Bonesaw and the Siberian left beforehand (Bonesaw pulled a Heel–Face Turn, Manton left to look for her and got captured by Faultline's crew), and every other member except Mannequin and Burnscar (who end up joining Coil) die while they're there.
  • X-Men 1970 kicks off when the original X-Men agree to quit the team and go separate ways.
  • In Danganronpa: The Immersive Learning Program, after Monokuma reveal the identities of the former Remnant of Despairs, the students divide themselves into Remants and Non-Remnants out of fear and paranoia, segregating the Remnants to a motel on the third Jabberwock Island.
  • I'm Nobody: This trope was discussed among the Normandy crew for a while after the hunt for Saren ended, but what put the nail in the coffin was Shepard's death, as each crewmember has to go their separate ways to prepare for the fight against the Reapers. However, they all agree that they are still the crew of the Normandy and will reunite.
  • Sixes and Sevens has the Class of '38, a group consisting of Michael Carter, Roger Aubrey, Robert Frank, Madelyn Jorce, and Edith Harker. They were thick as thieves back in Oxford, but before the story began Edith disappeared without goodbye and Roger had a falling out with Michael, causing both to go their separate ways. This left Maddie and Robby, who themselves were just starting their married life, as the only two left in contact with each other. The friends were on the cusp of reuniting when the war thrust them into various parts of the war effort and kept them distant from one another.
  • The White Wolf of Westeros: Geralt created a strong circle of friends around himself during his time in King's Landing with the goal of getting The Starks to safety. They traveled with him out to sea and back to the North, fighting soldiers, pirates and politics along the way. But with the Winterstorm Alliance now in effect and the Starks safe, the fellowship breaks up for now. Barristan and Syrio go east to find their white haired girls. Davos stays with Stannis to be part of the aquatic assault. Gendry stayed on Dragonstone. The Stark daughters returned to Winterfell. And Geralt leads his other warrior companions south as the forward company for Stannis, and the next phase of his adventures.
  • BlazBlue Alternative: Remnant:
    • Team TSYP goes through this after the events of V3, as Weiss and Tsubaki's parents force them to return home to Atlas while Pyrrha chooses to return home to her mother so she can reassure her that she's okay. Yang, meanwhile, has to return home to Patch so she can take care of Ruby.
    • Team RNJR also goes through this, as Ruby is forced to return home due to losing her eye to Terumi so she can recover, Jaune stays behind in Vale to help the city, and both Ragna and Noel are captured by the villains.

    Films — Animation 
  • On The Land Before Time, Cera and Littlefoot fight over which is the right way to the Great Valley. The others end up following Cera, because her route seems easier, leaving Littlefoot alone. Cera's way, however, leads them into danger, and Littlefoot has to rescue them.
  • In The Rugrats Movie, Tommy's devotion to protecting his baby brother Dil angers Phil and Lil enough that they opt to abandon them in the forest. Chuckie follows suit when he admits he feels betrayed that his best friend wasn't trying to protect him instead of his brother. This proves to be a problem when the trio gets lost in a rainstorm and Phil is nearly crushed by a falling tree. It's enough to send the babies running back to save Tommy and Dil the next morning.
  • In Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island, the Scooby Gang begins the movie separated, having grown bored of hunting ghosts that end up being guys in suits.
  • Toy Story
    • It's very downplayed in Toy Story 3 when Woody, incensed that the rest of Andy's toys donated themselves to Sunnyside Daycare and refused to listen to his claims that Andy was trying to put them in the attic, storms off and leaves them. It's only when they realize that Woody was right that they try to get out and go back home, but Lotso', not wanting anyone to leave, brainwashes Buzz Lightyear and locks them up, forcing Woody to come back and not only bust them out, but undo the brainwashing on his friend. While it appears this will happen at the end, Woody decides to stay with the gang and leave Andy behind.
    • It happens yet again in Toy Story 4, when Woody decides to leave the gang to stay with Bo Peep.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • In The Avengers, this is part of Loki's Evil Plan early in the film to cause Bruce Banner to Hulk out and help break the Avengers apart so they will be out of his way when he summons the Chitauri to Earth. It nearly works.
    • The sequel Avengers: Age of Ultron ends with the Hulk lost, and Iron Man, Thor and Hawkeye leaving the team. Captain America and Black Widow end up forming a new Avengers line-up consisting of War Machine, Scarlet Witch, The Falcon and The Vision. Kevin Feige has stated that the company plans to alter the Avengers line-up in each movie they appear in.
    • In Captain America: Civil War the Avengers are pitted against one another over a registration act (one side in favor of it, the other against it), and the question of what do with Bucky Barnes. It tears the group apart, and by the end of the film, Steve Rogers / Captain America and his anti-registration team (Clint / Hawkeye, Wanda / Scarlet Witch, Sam / Falcon, and Scott / Ant-Man) are fugitives, Rhodey / War Machine is paralyzed, Tony and Steve are not on good terms with each other, Thor is off-planet, the Hulk is still missing, and now so is Black Widow. Tony / Iron Man and Vision are the only active Avengers left, plus one pseudo-Avenger in Peter / Spider-Man.
    • Avengers: Endgame serves as the Grand Finale for the current storyline, and to say Nothing Is the Same Anymore would be a severe understatement. Tony dies from using the Infinity Stones to dust Thanos and his army. Black Widow pulled a Heroic Sacrifice so Clint could obtain the Soul Stone. Vision is still dead. Steve goes back in time to return the Infinity Stones, but decides to stay in the past and marry Peggy, only returning to the present as an old man to give the shield to Sam Wilson. Thor leaves with the Guardians of the Galaxy, leaving Valkyrie as the new leader of the Asgardians. Clint got his family back. Bruce has merged forms and no longer has to fear losing control, can resume work as a brilliant scientist, and has earned the love and respect of the world that once feared him. But everyone closest to him is gone. Everyone else is alive and well, but the original Avengers team is over.
    • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3: The original Guardians team largely goes their separate ways at the end. Quill heads back to Earth to reconnect with his grandfather, Mantis goes off to explore the galaxy and find herself, the alternate Gamora goes back to the Ravagers, Nebula and Drax stay on Knowhere (Nebula stays to rebuild and Drax stays to raise the children rescued from the High Evolutionary), while Rocket leads a new incarnation of the Guardians consisting of himself, Groot, Kraglin, Adam Warlock, Cosmo, Phyla, and Blurp.
  • It (2017): After their first confrontation with IT at Neibolt, the Losers Club all panics and falls out, being apart from one another for an entire month. When Pennywise kidnaps Beverly, Bill rallies them back together to save her.
  • Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, the close-knit group of friends that formed in New York no longer exists when Queenie decides to defect to Grindelwald's side.
  • Rescuers: Stories of Courage: At the end of "We Are Circus", many of the Jewish refugees and circus performers leave to make new lives for themselves in the changing world, to the slight disappointment of the people they have spent so long with.
  • Grandmother's Farm 2: At the end of the movie, Yassir discovers that Khalid brought a girl to his grandmother's farm in the previous movie, who was possessed by a djinn and wrecked her farm. He angrily tries to throttle Khalid over it, and the end result is a huge fight where they all decide they don't want to be friends anymore.

  • The Lord of the Rings is the Trope Namer here. They never do all meet again, since one of them dies and one is irrevocably transformed in the interim. They manage 8 of the original 9.
  • David Eddings' Belgariad: Towards the end of the novel the main party splits off to protect the ones they love, so to speak. Happens again in the Mallorean too.
  • The protagonist Stark family (including the illegitimate son, Jon Snow) of A Song of Ice and Fire is separated early on in the first novel, and further separates from there. As of the fifth book, two of them are almost certainly dead, one is ambiguously dead, one is lost north of the Wall and presumed dead, one is undead, one is a glorified captive of a sociopathic manipulator with a creepy sexual interest in her, one is learning to abandon her entire identity, and one is living on an island of cannibals. The outlook of a happy reunion seems bleak.
  • The Circle of Magic series by Tamora Pierce has three arcs. In the first four books, four misunderstood children are brought together by their alienating special powers, X-Men style. In the second four books, titled "The Circle Opens," we follow the main cast as adults, when they have all split up and taken an apprentice of their own. There is minimal contact between them, and each of books 5-8 is effectively independent of the others. The 9th book serves as a literary equivalent of The Movie, getting them all back together for a reunion, although their travels and the horrors that they've seen (or even participated in) have made them grow apart.
  • In Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman's Dragonlance Chronicles, the main party is forced to separate early in the second book when the city of Tarsis is under attack. The groups mostly reassemble before the end, except that two died and another seemingly switched sides.
  • In Dune Thufir Hawat and Gurney Halleck are separated from Paul and Jessica in the wake of the Harkonnens' attack, and Duncan Idaho is killed. They're finally able to get together again at the end of the book.
  • In Warrior Cats, the chosen cats from The New Prophecy have to split back to their Clans after the Great Journey.
  • In Septimus Heap, whenever this happens...things start getting wrong. For example, in Darke, between Septimus and Jenna splitting up at the Palace gates and meetign again in the Dragon Field the Castle is overrun by a Darke Domaine and their mother Sarah Heap is trapped inside of it.
  • In The Hereward Trilogy, the breakup of Wild Edric's Wish Hounds foreshadows the eventual fate of Hereward's own gang. There's a failed attempt to regroup the former, and the latter do regroup (those of them still alive) - but not for long.
  • In Zeroes, the Zeroes began training as a superhero team, but they had an argument which resulted in the group dissolving and each member going their separate way. The story begins several years later with them Putting the Band Back Together.
  • The first book of The Witchlands ends with Merik staying in Nubrevna to help his kingdom, Safi going to Marstok on Vaness' ship and Iseult leaving Nubrevna for the Contested Lands to try and find out what happened to Safi.
  • In The Overstory, the five members of the main cast who have become True Companions while working for an environmental group part ways at the end of the second section of the book after a tragically bungled attempt at arson that leads to one of their deaths. The remaining people separate as they blame each other, are disillusioned with the whole endeavor, and need to split up to not get caught.
  • The Ravenor trilogy ends with Ravenor's close-knit team falling apart. Zeph, Angharad and Carl are all dead. Nayl and Belknap both walk out. Zael and Frauka are taken away for psychic testing, never to be seen by Ravenor again. Unwerth and Preest have both broken off contact with him. And Kara, like Ravenor himself, is awaiting trial. Patience and Maud are the only members of the team still free and still standing by Ravenor at the end.
  • In The Expanse series' novel Nemesis Games: The crew of the Rocinante find themselves stuck in dry dock after the events of the previous book, and are called away to points throughout Sol System, each pursuing their own agendas.
    • Except for Holden, who stays behind to help with the repairs.
    • Amos goes back to Earth to check on the circumstances around the death of Lydia, the woman who took care of him in Baltimore after his mother died. He also decides to check on Clarissa Mao, a.k.a. Peaches, in prison for her crimes.
    • Alex returns to Mars to find closure with his ex-wife, Tali, and gets pulled into an investigation with Bobbie Draper regarding lost Martian Navy Ships and equipment.
    • Naomi heads to Ceres Station to try and help her estranged son, Filip, flee safely after his part in an OPA attack on a Martian shipyard on Calypso. She is subsequently kidnapped and brought to Marco Inaros, Filip's father and her former lover, who has become a hard-line OPA military leader planning on the largest terrorist action against the Inner Planets ever devised. They have a bad time of it, and the plot of the book is about their efforts to reunite.

    Live-Action TV 
  • A famous example comes from Blake's 7 which saw most of the cast being split up after the loss of their Cool Ship and the main title character departing the series (only to return and get killed in the last episode.
  • One season of CSI saw the usual ensemble split up between night and swing shifts.
  • Farscape: At the end of the third season the crew of Moya all go their separate ways, some more willingly than others. The fourth season slowly reintroduces the cast over five episodes as they track each other down. Turns out most of them either had bounties on their heads already or got into trouble during the break and had to come back to Moya because it was safer with people they knew.
  • Happened to House, twice. Once at the end of Season 3, and again in season 4. It wasn't until midway through season 6 that he got most of both teams back, but given his personality it is probably only a matter of time before it happens again.
  • Lost. The last time "the whole gang" (minus everyone who's died along the way) is gathered has to be 4.01, "The Beginning of the End". A very fundamental split in ideology occurs in that episode, and the majority of the core group aren't united in one place again until two seasons later where 3 years have passed in the show.
    • The initial disagreement, despite causing the separation, eventually became less important, but various new events and threats kept the group from being as one for the remainder of the time afterwards.
  • Merlin: The Four-Temperament Ensemble composed of Merlin, Arthur, Morgana and Guinevere slowly falls apart throughout the course of season two due to Morgana's increasing isolation, and sundered forever at the end of the season when she's taken away by her half-sister. In the wake of her absence, the remaining three become a tight Power Trio, and at the end of season three there's a brand new Fellowship in the form of the Knights of the Round Table.
  • NCIS splits up Gibbs' team after Leon Vance takes over. They all eventually come back together.
    • In the Tenth season finale, the team resigns in a show of support for Gibbs when a congressional witch hunt threatens his career.
  • Robin Hood: At the end of the second season, Will Scarlett and Djaq opt to stay in the Holy Land instead of returning to England with their comrades. A sad example, considering the writers completely forget about their existence, and they're never seen or heard from again.
  • The latter half of the fourth season of Babylon 5 had the human crewmembers split up between Babylon 5, Mars, and in between fighting in the Earth Alliance civil war. A number of the alien characters also got involved in this plotline when they weren't tied up in the problems of their home worlds.
  • In the fifth season finale of Bones, Brennan and Daisy join an excavation in Maluku, Booth becomes a military adviser in Afghanistan and newlyweds Angela and Hodgins go to Paris for an extended honeymoon. During the following season premiere when Cam's position as director of the Jeffersonian is in jeopardy, Judge Caroline sends word to the others, Putting the Band Back Together
  • Leverage has this at the first season finale in which all of the various characters disappear on their own. They get back together in the first episode of season 2.
  • In third Season Finale of Brooklyn Nine-Nine Jake and Holt are sent to Florida on witness protection, the first three episodes of season 4 deal with them getting back, an example with lower stakes was at the start previous season where Holt and Gina where Kicked Upstairs by Madeline Wuntch.
  • In How I Met Your Mother, in the final episode after Barney and Robin's divorce, the gang slowly drifted apart due to work and family reasons. Especially Robin who intentionally kept her distance because it was difficult for her to be close to her ex-husband and Ted, who she believed she should have married. A sad truth in real life.
  • Person of Interest. At the end of Season 3, Team Machine has to abandon their secret headquarters in the library and escape separately under false identities the moment Samaritan comes on line.
  • Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers: For their own reasons, Jason, Zack, Trini and Kimberly all end up relinquishing their positions as Rangers to others. By the time the initial Mighty Morphin' series ends, Billy, the Blue Ranger, is the only one of the initial five remaining.
  • Angel:
    • The gang is completely broken up by the end of Season 3, with Angel trapped at the bottom of the sea, Cordelia ascended to a higher plane of existence, Wesley exiled from the team and no longer welcome, Lorne gone to pursue a singing career in Las Vegas, and Guest-Star Party Member Groo gone after realizing Cordelia didn't love him. The only remaining members are Fred and Gunn, and, in a loose sense of "member", the Wild Card Connor. The gang is reassembled at the beginning of Season 4 except for Groo and, as it turns out later, Cordelia.
    • Inverted in Season 5, when Angel explains the Circle of the Black Thorn would be invulnerable if they were all attacked together, but they can be attacked like any other demons when each member is doing things away from the Circle.

  • Gorillaz did this twice, all detailed in their autobiography.
  • In-Universe, after Siivagunner's King for a Day tournament, the Dancing Alien Team had partially disbanded. When the second tournament began, Howard joined Will Smith and formed The Men In Black, while Popoy and Marcianito joined Pitbull and formed Pitbull and the Aliens. However, during the second tournament's lore, they reconcile. We promise you that It Makes Sense in Context.
  • Visual Kei group Destrose (formerly Destroyah) is instrumental in the rise of the all-female Japanese metal band and were notorious for having members leave. From 2005 to 2015, when founder Mina finally shut things down to make Fate Gear - the 5 piece band had 19 various members from so many people leaving, including 4 at once in 2008! However this would be a good thing for Japanese metal, while Babymetal's success lit the fire of the 2010s female metal boom, all those ex-Destrose members would end up leading to many of the bands that found succes in that time such as Mary's Blood and Lovebites.

  • The Mrs. Hawking play series: At the conclusion of Fallen Women, when Mary decides she has to leave to move on with her life.

    Video Games 
  • Mass Effect:
    • In Mass Effect 2, the team from the first game has scattered after Shepard's death. You get a couple of them back, but the others refuse to come back for various reasons (can't leave their work, won't work with Cerberus even for you). In Mass Effect 3, all of the surviving squad members from the first game (with the exception of Wrex, who remains an important ally) end up back with you.
    • And if you secured the team's loyalty in Mass Effect 2, then this is in full effect for them as well in Mass Effect 3, bordering on The Fellowship Has Ended. You can bring a few minor crewmembers back onto your team permanently, but most of the others are either tied up in their own quests, if not outright back with their own people trying to fight the Reapers. It doesn't help that most of them are considered outlaws in Alliance space, and Shepard is back with the Alliance Navy.
  • Final Fantasy VI: The entire second half revolves around tracking down each member of your old party and rallying back into the fight. The final dungeon is available very early on, but until you've glued your fellowship back together you won't stand much of a chance where Marathon Level and Boss Rush join forces to beat you up.
  • Final Fantasy XIII-2: A rather sad example from Hope's perspective. During the first game the five other party members became his True Companions, going to Pulse and back to Screw Destiny. When you meet a 24-year-old Hope in 10 -AF-, he describes how all of the former party members from the previous game (plus Serah) disappeared from his life; after Fang, Vanille (and Lightning, from his perspective) pulled a joint Heroic Sacrifice, the others slowly faded out of his life altogether (first because of the physical distance between them, then because they all went time-travelling), and Serah is the first one he's seen in the last 7 years. He is understandably quite put out when Serah and Noel inform him that he cannot join their quest because of the way time travel works.
  • In Final Fantasy XIV, this happens to the Scions of the Seventh Dawn at the end of Patch 2.55 when they are accused to assassinating Ul'dah sultana Nanamo ul Namo. The main Scions - Minfillia, Thancred, Y'shtola, Yda and Papalymo - all mysteriously disappear holding back the Crystal Braves and the Brass Braves, leaving only you, Alphinaud, Tataru and Urianger left. Urianger stays behind hidden in the Waking Sands and the remaining three run to Ishgard to hide. You spend a vast majority of the Heavensward expansion playing Clear My Name and finding your friends while killing dragons.
  • At the start of Star Fox Command, team Star Fox consists of only Fox and ROB 64. As the game progresses more characters join up (and in some scenarios Fox is no longer part of the group), but because of the Gamebook-style mission progression, which characters join your group varies from one playthrough to the next.
  • Vandal Hearts:
    • In Vandal Hearts, the party is split at the end of Chapter II. This is because The Magic Stone sends Ash, Grog and Sara into a pocket dimension that exists outside of time. The rest of the party is variously arrested, off joining the rebellion or in Kira's case, going back to the Big Bad after having betrayed the team.
    • In Vandal Hearts II at the end of the prologue, the five main characters split up and never join up again. Joshua becomes a noble brigand who goes on to play a vital part in the founding of Central Natra and then become its top Knight, one childhood friend joins the priesthood, one goes to a big city to protect Joshua's step-sister who works as a prostitute, one carries on her life as a noblewoman and becomes a political tool and the last succeeds in forging an army to try to seize the crown, but becomes a drunken washout. The player's actions within the game affects the final fates of these characters.
  • In Baldur's Gate II, two of your canonical party members from the first game are killed offscreen, and you lose another one at the end of the prologue dungeon. The first two are Deader than Dead, but you can get the third one back much later.
  • Every Dragon Age game ends like this.
    • After Dragon Age: Origins, playing the Awakening expansion reveals that the Warden's companions are all off doing their own thing - with the exception of Oghren, who shows up to be recruited into the Wardens. However, you may get a letter from your Warden's Love Interest if it was Leliana or Zevran; you'll get to see Alistair for a short visit if he's king; and you can have a quest-related reunion with Wynne during the course of the expansion.
    • Dragon Age II ends with all the surviving party members going their separate ways after Hawke disappears (except for Hawke's Love Interest, who goes with him/her).
    • The Trespasser DLC for Dragon Age: Inquisition shows that at some point between the end of the main game and the beginning of the DLC, all of the Herald's companions left except for the three advisors. You reunite with them for the duration of the DLC, and codex entries can be picked up which show letters that the Herald received from them. However, the DLC's epilogue slides show the fellowship breaking up again, for good this time.
  • In MS Saga: A New Dawn, your team is separated after one leaves due to feeling inadequate and the rest are separated from you after the bad guy's base is destroyed, killing one of your allies in the process. They get back together soon after and the guy who leaves comes back after Taking a Level in Badass.
  • In Shin Megami Tensei I, Chaos Hero will leave the party after fusing himself with a demon and killing Ozawa, stating that the other characters will only slow him down or get themselves killed.
  • Happens to an extent in the beginning of the final volume of .hack//G.U.. Despite building up a team of 7 of the 8 Avatar users and a bunch of others, Yata is promptly fired by CC Corp, forcing him to abandon the team in despair. Pi leaves as well to try to talk sense into him, while Endrance seemingly betrays you and Sakubo (who never liked Haseo anyway) going with him. With the non Avatar users still locked out of the loop, that leaves only Atoli and Kuhn as the only people Haseo can rely on to stop Sakaki. Endrance was pulling a Fake Defector though and Yata eventually comes to his senses and returns.
  • Golden Sun: Dark Dawn: We see only two of the previous games' eight protagonists (Isaac and Garet, who live in a cabin near what's left of Mt. Aleph), although the others are occasionally mentioned (Jenna and Ivan live in Kalay, Piers is out at sea, Mia might be in Imil, and Felix hasn't been heard from since, no word on Sheba though). Particularly aggravating as the game features many a Point of No Return and Broken Bridge that prevent you from going to see them, and ends on a Cliffhanger to boot.
  • At the end of Sunrider Liberation Day, the Sunrider's crew is forced to split up following the Liberation Day massacre and the destruction of the Sunrider. Chigara is dead, having been mind-controlled by the Big Bad into committing the massacre. Ava and Asaga have gone to Ryuvia Prime to gather military support from Asaga's people and see if they can't dig up any Lost Technology to use against the PACT. Sola and Kayto have gone into hiding on the desolate planet Tydaria, as he is now a fugitive. Icari has gone to seek out her old contacts in the black market in order to get equipment and mercenaries. Kryska turns herself in to the Alliance authorities, hoping to regain Alliance support for their cause and expose what the Alliance military nearly did to Cera. And Claude, who has been revealed to be a time traveller and a goddess, is doing god knows what.
  • In The Elder Scrolls series, the Morag Tong is a legal assassin's guild of Professional Killers officially sanctioned by the Dunmeri government to avoid destructive open warfare between the Great Houses. Following a series of calamities in the very early 4th Era, culminating with the eruptions of Red Mountain which rendered a large portion of Morrowind uninhabitable, the Morag Tong was forced to "scatter to the nine winds", as former Morag Tong assassin and current Thieves' Guild member, Ravyn Imyan, puts it in Skyrim. They made a pact to reunite one day, but Imyan believes that time is a long way off. (However, the Dragonborn DLC has evidence of the Tong's continued activities in Solstheim.)
  • The King of Fighters: Team Japan, consisting of Kyo Kusanagi, Benimaru Nikaido and Goro Daimon were an unstoppable trio, winning no less than four iterations of the tournament back-to-back. All that came to an end in '99, during which Kyo was shanghaied and cloned by NESTS, and Daimon opted out of competition to spend time with his family. It took until 2001 for the boys to properly get back together, and even then they've become prone to scattering again since.
  • Overwatch was already facing several crises even before it was outlawed by the United Nations, what with the murder of Gérard Lacroix by his own brainwashed wife, the presumed loss of Ana Amari in a Sniper Duel to said brainwashed wife, the dubious actions of Blackwatch coming to light, Reinhardt Wilhelm being forced to retire, and everybody being unaware about Cole Cassidy lying about his identity. The last straw however was a fight between Jack Morrison (the actual leader of Overwatch) and Gabriel Reyes (leader of Blackwatch) that ended with both of them presumed dead and everybody scattering off without a leader to guide them. The plot properly begins with an illegal attempt by Winston at Putting the Band Back Together.
  • In Persona 5, with the Conspiracy and Yaldaboth being taken care of, the Thieves are reluctantly forced to disband as Joker's probation has ended and he is to return home and Morgana decides to go with the latter. Though the True Ending shows all the Thieves tagging along with Joker and Morgana as a road trip, serving as their last hurrah for the time being.
  • This occurs in each Sly Cooper game since the second.
    • Sly 2: Band of Thieves: The gang are forced to go their separate ways when Sly offers himself to Carmelita to save her job in exchange for Bentley and Murray walking free. Sly does escape with his friends' help, leading to Carmelita becoming a Knight Templar. Bentley and Murray eventually rejoin Sly while in Italy.
    • Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves: Sly fakes amnesia to retire from crime and be together with Carmelita. As does the rest of the gang, with Murray taking a career in demolition derby, and Bentley and Penelope planning their own future in gadgetry. Bentley also begins working on a time machine, which leads to the unfortunate ending of...
    • Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time: Sly ends up stuck in Ancient Egypt, and Penelope is kicked out of the Cooper Gang for treason when it's revealed that she's a manipulative sociopath and yandere who exploited their trust and plotted against Sly and Murray. Despite this, however, Bentley, Murray and Carmelita are still working together to find Sly's whereabouts.
  • Them's Fightin' Herds: According to Texas, this happened on a worldwide scale in Foenum long ago. After banishing the predators from their world, all the inhabitants decided they'd rather hang around their own species than mingle with each other.
  • In Monark, the True Student Council is convened due to the inability of any other organization or the administration to deal with the ongoing supernatural anomalies plaguing Shin Mikado Academy. At start of Act 1's Intermission, it is formally dissolved by the Principal, Sora Jingu, and Act 2 involves the protagonist, the Vice-President, aligning himself with one of the 4 major ex-members. Act 3, Deepest Depths, involves the Vice-President Putting the Band Back Together.
  • In the end of Sonic Frontiers, Tails, Amy and Knuckles decide to head off onto their own adventures once they leave Starfall Islands — Amy wants to travel the world and be the All-Loving Hero she is to the whole world, wanting to bring Cream the Rabbit and Sticks the Badger with her; Knuckles wants to stop constantly guarding the Master Emerald and see the world; Tails wants to become stronger so he doesn't have to rely on Sonic or make him feel he's a burden on him.
  • Monster Lab: The Mad Science Alliance broke up prior to the game's events after Baron Mharti became seduced by the prospect of great power and started taking over the Uncanny Valley; the other three members argued on how to deal with him and eventually went their separate ways. Putting the Band Back Together to oppose the Baron's Evil Plan is a core part of the plot.

    Web Animation 
  • In Red vs. Blue, when Tex defected from Project Freelancer, this resulted in the remaining Freelancers' loyalties being divided and Project Freelancer was ultimately fractured. Maine (now known as the Meta) started hunting down the remaining AI fragments and killing their hosts. North left the Project with South, only for South to betray him and allow the Meta to kill him. York became a thief. Washington became Recovery One and was charged with retrieving fallen Freelancer equipment and AI fragments.
  • In RWBY, Beacon headmaster Ozpin creates Team RWBY, who must learn to work together both academically and in combat in order to graduate. They are forced to separate after the villains invade Vale in the Beacon arc and don't reunite until the end of the Anima arc. Yang Xiao Long loses her arm and recovers at home; Weiss Schnee is forcibly taken to Atlas by her father Jacques; and Blake Belladonna goes on the run to her Menagerie home after her Psycho Ex-Boyfriend Adam Taurus helped the villains destroy Beacon and maim Yang. As for Ruby Rose, she joins the remains of Team JNPR to seek out the villains.

  • In Drowtales, this happens to Alpha Bitch(Chrys'tel)'s Five-Man Band; later Ariel's group splits over an internal disagreement, only to find each other via Big Damn Heroes. They later split up again on much more amicable terms to pursue different goals.
  • Happened in The Order of the Stick following the battle of Azure City. Eventually they got back together, but with all party members having gone through a lot of Character Development. The arc was even titled "Don't Split The Party".
    • Also happened in the backstory to the "Order of the Scribble," the Order of the Stick's predecessors in confronting the dangers of the Snarl. They never reunited and, at least in the case of Girard Draketooth, hated the others Soon Kim beyond rational thought.
  • In Juathuur, Faevv's group splits relatively fast. When they reunite, they act slightly hostile. "A lot happened after you left" is a sentence that gets used a lot.
  • Gunnerkrigg Court had the group formerly containing Surma, Anthony, Eglamore, Anja, Donald and (presumably) Brinnie. By the time the comic starts, the group has been broken — Anja, Donald and James remained in the Court as teachers, Brinnie's whereabouts are unknown (appeared only in flashback) and Surma and Anthony in Good Hope Hospital, with Surma as a patient and Anthony as the doctor. Surma ended up with Carver instead of Eglamore and the Court's three lost contact with Brinnie and didn't know where Surma and Anthony were (Anja apparently discovered that Surma died only when Annie was transferred to the Court). Why they broke up on such bad terms is yet unknown. The only plausible apple of discord revealed so far was Reynardine possession incident.
  • Vampire Cheerleaders: The Paranormal Mystery Squad was a privately run organization of cryptid hunters, which was lead by Stephanie Kane. But their group was disbanded by order of PETM, after Stephanie was abducted by the mothmen at the beginning of vol.4.

    Web Original 
  • The end of AFK has V'rugga leave with his brother, Steven stay with Serena's group, Brendon and Maybel dead and Jack and Q searching for a way to return to the real world so Q can return to her daughter.
  • Suburban Knights starts off on the adventure by splitting the group in two. It makes sense here, though; the map they're using has two distinct paths and there's still nine people in each group.
  • Done throughout Seasons 2 & 3 of We're Alive. First Lizzy gets kicked out of the Tower in Chapter 20, then Saul, Victor, Burt and Lizzy get left behind in Chapter 24, finally Pegs, Kelly, Datu, and Hope get sent to Boulder in Chapter 29. The group finally comes back together in Chapter 36.

    Western Animation 
  • Avengers Assemble: In season 2, Captain America gets steadily frustrated with Tony's arrogance and refusal to communicate, until he finally reaches breaking point and quits. The next episode, Black Widow, Falcon and Hulk go with. Which was what Ultron had been planning on. However, one of Ultron's schemes causes them to reunite.
  • The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes:
    • In "Who Can You Trust?", news of a Skrull among the Avengers causes everyone to lose trust in one another, and three Avengers quit because of this distrust. Iron Man even renounces his leadership position, which gets taken by the Skrull, Captain America.
    • The Skrull uses his position beforehand as well, and sows discord in the group. The Hulk gets locked up because of a doppelganger, and Thor went off world an hour or two before the Skrull arrived, so eventually at one point the team shot in the beginning of the theme is just three members, while the song blares triumphantly "Forever fight as one..!"
  • Kim Possible: In "A Sitch in Time", part of Shego's plan is splitting up Kim and Ron by having Ron's mother transferred to Scandinavia.
  • Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated: The first season finale ends with Fred leaving to find his real parents, Daphne leaving because Fred called off their engagement, Shaggy being sent to military school, Scooby being sent to a farm, and Velma left as the only one to investigate the mystery of Crystal Cove.
  • This was Discord's plan for the main cast in the season two premiere of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic so they would be unable to use the Elements of Harmony against him. Fortunately, he underestimated just how powerful The Power of Friendship was.
    • In EQUESTRIA GIRLS, Sunset Shimmer did this to the Humane Five before Twilight arrived in their world and reunited them.
  • In The Legend of Korra, this happens to New Team Avatar in Book 4, after the three-year Time Skip from the end of Book 3. Mako and Asami are pursuing their own lives in Republic City, Bolin is signed up with Knight Templar Kuvira (not knowing just how bad she is) and Korra is still recovering from the Red Lotus poisoning her with what should have been a fatal dose of mercury. This changes later, after Korra manages to recover mentally, physically and spiritually and Bolin realises that Kuvira is nuts and bails. Mako and Asami welcome the other two back with open arms in Republic City.
  • This happens to the Princess Alliance prior to the events of She-Ra and the Princesses of Power. Much of the plot of the show's first season is of Adora, Bow, and Glimmer trying to recruit princesses to rebuild the alliance.
    • Season 4 breaks up the Best Friends Squad as rifts develop between Glimmer, Bow and Adora, culminating in Adora and Bow openly defying Glimmer's orders to save another friend. To be fair, though, it took a lot to get them to that point: Glimmer's grief over her mother's death, which she subconsciously blames on Adora; Shadow Weaver's attempts to get her hooks in with Glimmer by undermining her relationship with Adora and Bow; Double Trouble stoking infighting within the Alliance; Adora's tendency to be overly controlling in her protectiveness crashing headlong into Glimmer's insecurities about people taking her seriously; the Horde going on a blitzkrieg offensive; and Glimmer being, like, eighteen and put in charge of the last, best hope for freedom without any real prep-time. Nor is it fixed by the end of the season, although there is still hope for it especially since Bow and Adora have vowed to rescue Glimmer from Horde Prime's ship, and Glimmer had a My God, What Have I Done? moment when she realises how much damage her actions nearly did.

  • BIONICLE: after being transformed by Energized Protodermis and sparring with each other, the Toa Nuva team disbands so each would be off protecting their villages. Then the Bohrok-Kal show up and nearly kill them, forcing them to band back together.


Video Example(s):


Not Friends in the Future

In the future, the Stump Trio and Omar go their separate ways six years later and their friendship drifts apart, but J.P. and Omar still remain close friends.

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Example of:

Main / BreakingTheFellowship

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