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"Everybody Helps Out" Denouement

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An Ending Trope. Some stories of a more "feel-good" persuasion end with the characters volunteering to improve their community. Often they will be repairing damage done during the climax and characters previously at conflict will be seen working together. Some works portray this with a single scene, others with a Montage.

This gives the main characters the manpower to quickly wrap up the story and avert the cliché where The Main Characters Do Everything. It also implies that characters are overcoming the events of the story and acts as an extra feelgood aesop about the power of teamwork and societal changes that can be enacted when people come together. If the community was not on their side for most of the story, their participation here also likely signals a turning point in their support of the main characters.

This is perhaps most common in animation, which has historically been more kid-friendly and optimistic than live-action films. You can also expect it in a Christmas Special, Christmas Episode, or Christmas movies due to the focus on peace and good cheer in those works.

This applies to a non-violent resolution in the Dénouement. So, when many characters come together in the climax to resolve the plot through a liberal application of punching or fire, that is not this trope.

A classic sub-trope of Happy Ending. Compare Hard-Work Montage, which focuses more on the intensity of the labor than the unity of those involved and doesn't need to come after the climax. If done poorly, it can easily verge into Sweetness Aversion territory.

This is an Ending Trope, so expect unmarked spoilers!


Examples:

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    Anime & Manga 
  • The Gecko Ending for the anime adaption of Moriarty the Patriot shows the Moriarty clan, without William, working side-by-side with the people of the British Empire to improve things and help the community instead of terrorizing the worst of the worst.
  • In the series Tokyo Magnitude 8.0.0 (2009) which depicts Tokyo being hit by a major earthquake also show the people of the city banding together to survive and help each other in the days that follow.

    Comic Books 
  • Fear Itself ends with the people of the area of Oklahoma near where Asgard fell working to clean up the rubble, with the final scene being a man loaning his lawn mower to his neighbors as a sign that community has triumphed over Fear.
  • At the end of Final Crisis, the surviving heroes are all seen working together to repair the damage done by Darkseid.
  • In the aftermath of the Invincible Invincible War, the superheroes work together to repair the damage the Evil Alternate Invincibles have caused. Unfortunately, their work is cut short when a powerful Viltrumite named "Conquest" arrives on Earth to battle Invincible. Conquest and Invincible have an incredibly bloody battle that causes destruction that even rivals the Invincible War.
  • Kingdom Come ends with most superheroes (as well as normal people) actively cleaning up the mess they've made during the story.
  • At the end of one issue of her titular series, X23 and her telekinetic friend clean up the rubble left behind by a dragon attack. Both are relieved when they finish before the parents she's babysitting for return.

    Films — Animated 
  • This is a common resolution for Hayao Miyazaki's movies (as well as other Studio Ghibli titles) — Very often you will see characters that started out as enemies put their differences aside in order to work together to help the protagonist resolve the situation, or at the very least they lend moral support.
  • From Up on Poppy Hill - the male and female students put their differences aside and band together to fix up and save the clubhouse / the people of Yokohama band together to help Umi and Shun make it to the harbor in time to speak with a ship's officer who has important information about their shared past.
  • Ponyo - After the flood, the townspeople form a boat convoy / SÅŤsuke's parents, the goddess of the sea, the wizard, and the residents of the retirement home get together to bring the movie to a resolution.
  • Porco Rosso - the sea plane pirates who were supposed to be hunting down the protagonists decide to band together to help them escape the Italian police.
  • Spirited Away - Although they are initially content to sit back and watch her suffer, the denizens of the bathhouse band together to help Sen with the stink monster. Later, a group of characters who were all originally hostile to Sen work together to make her a protective charm.
  • Chicken Little ends with the aliens helping restore all the damage they did to the town after the title character clears up their fatal misunderstanding.
  • Encanto ends with all the townsfolk coming to help out the Madrigals in a moment of gratitude. Together, they and the entire family Madrigal repair the Abuela's house without any powers.
  • The '60s special How the Grinch Stole Christmas! faithfully adapts the ending of the book of the same name, where all the Whos in Whoville come together after having their gifts stolen to enjoy the holiday in each other's company.
  • The Lorax (2012) ends with the musical number "Let it Grow," where the population of Thneedville agrees to start helping the environment after realizing what a horrible state it's in. The shot of the Lorax's home at the end suggests they've succeeded.
  • The Simpsons Movie ends with everyone repairing the damage caused by the destruction of the dome and the events leading up to it. This continues in the title sequence of the first episode after the movie, "He Loves to Fly and He D'ohs".
  • At the end of Steven Universe: The Movie, a montage is shown of the citizens helping to restore Beach City after Spinel's injector destroyed it.
  • In Turning Red, during the epilogue, the SkyDome is shown being repaired and there is a fund set up for that purpose that visitors to the Lee family temple contribute to including many of Mei's classmates.
  • At the end of WALL•E, all the humans work together to clean up Earth and rebuild society.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • If there's a one-man version of this, it's the end of Bruce Almighty, where he decides the mundane approach, creativity, and willingness to work are the solutions to his problems, instead of working miracles.
  • After the final battle of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the wizards of the USA use their magic to repair the damage done to New York City while Newt's beast erases all non-magical memory of that terrible night.
  • At the very end of It's a Wonderful Life, all the townsfolk of Bedford Falls come to the Baileys' house to give George the $8,000 dollars the bank needs to stay afloat, one bill at a time.
  • Serenity has Mal, Zoe, and Jayne (and The Operative's troops) fixing up the titular ship, while Simon and Kaylee are... otherwise engaged.
  • In Tangshan Dadizhen or Aftershock (Chinese, 2010), twin brother and sister are tragically separated in the Tangshan earthquake of 1976. The girl is rescued and adopted by members of the Red Army who went to the city as aide workers and the boy remains in the city with their mother. Years later, when Tangshan is struck by another earthquake, both twins rush back to help with the rescue & reconstruction efforts.

    Literature 
  • In the end of Dragon Bones, everyone works hard at rebuilding castle Hurog, which had been destroyed in the victory over the villains.
  • Dr. Seuss's children's book How the Grinch Stole Christmas! details how the reclusive and antisocial Grinch robbed the homes of Whoville down to the plaster and floorboards in order to silence their Christmas merrymaking. When the Grinch listened for wailing and misery, however, what he heard instead was the regular Christmas caroling in the town square. It was this focus on the meaning of Christmas that triggers the Grinch's Heel–Face Turn and compels him to return the loot to the townfolk. This sequence is faithfully depicted in Chuck Jones's Animated Adaptation.
  • After winning the last battle of The Lord of the Rings, all the hobbits work together to undo the damage caused by Sharkey's occupation of the Shire.
  • Unique ends with representatives of the monster hunters, the Magi and the civilized werewolves getting together and preparing to wipe out a murderous rogue werewolf pack, staging their attack from the vampires' manor.

    Live-Action TV 
  • A fourth-season episode of Community is resolved by the study group cleaning up the other study rooms as a way of giving back to their school.
  • CSI: Miami has an episode where an older Cuban shop owner's store is severely vandalized and he is injured. At the end, the man's community comes together to help him rebuild. Some of the CSIs show up as well, including Eric who helps unveil a new awning with the store's logo. It is larger and much nicer than the original. Horatio looks on approvingly as the man is moved to tears.
  • In the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "Body Parts", Quark breaks a contract and most of his possessions, including equipment for his business, are seized by the Ferengi Commerce Authority. But then Captain Sisko starts bringing in some furniture and soon everyone from around the station brings in what Quark needs to reopen his bar.
  • The Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Ensign Ro" concludes with the Enterprise crew helping support and rebuild the Bajoran refugee camp after Picard learned the horrors of their condition from Ro, who he offers a position on the ship.

    Theatre 
  • Beetlejuice: The Musical ends with the Deetzes and the Maitlands demonstrating their agreement to share the house by working together to clean up the mess left by the climax - all while singing "Shake Senora."

    Video Games 
  • In the good ending of Epic Mickey, you see all the NPCs you've helped (like the Gremlins, bosses, and the animatronics) cleaning up messes around the Wasteland and celebrate as paint restores the place to its former glory.
  • Assuming you live through the Suicide Mission, Mass Effect 2 ends with Shepard touring the Normandy, overseeing the repairs being done by the surviving crew.
  • In three out of five possible endings of Mass Effect 3, all surviving characters, species and factions across the entire galaxy (including the Reapers) come together to help rebuild and reform galactic civilization.
  • In Persona 4 The Golden, everyone in Inaba is shown making the town significantly better. Rather than complaining that superstore Junes is stealing their business, local stores open a Locally-Produced Goods section in Junes. Namatame, who just had a very public affair and divorce, followed by being suspect #1 in his mistress's murder, is now running for mayor, with a good chance of winning. The local Teen Idol stops by once in a while to perform if things get too boring, and a super-sleuth Kid Detective now calls the town home, making crime virtually impossible. Oh, and the local weather girl literally controls the weather!

    Western Animation 
  • The Avatar: The Last Airbender episode "The Painted Lady" ends with the crew helping a village clean a river.
  • The Christmas Episode of Danny Phantom ends with Danny and his Rogues Gallery calling a truce after the final fight to return all the Christmas presents and decorations that got destroyed over the course of the plot.
  • Played for Laughs in an episode of South Park, which ends with the town working on gardens and picking up litter to ensure a better future before deciding their previous solution, having gay sex in a big pile, was less gay, and they go back to that.
  • The Simpsons episode "Homer the Great" seems to be ending this way, with Homer deciding to use his power as The Chosen One to have the order help out around the community...but they all hate it so much, they found another order, based on not having Homer as a member.
  • The episode "Party Pete" in Regular Show has a mild one where many of the partygoers help Mordecai and Rigby clean up before Benson arrives.
  • The Grand Finale of Men in Black: The Series ends with getting together to rebuild their HQ, which had been blown up in the previous episode.
  • Ninjago: At the end of the "Crystalized" arc, just about every significant character from the run of the show come together to help rebuild the monastery.

 
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Video Example(s):

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Home is Where the Haunt Is

Just as the McGees are about to leave Brighton after being forced out of their home, Andrea Davenport manages to rally the townsfolk into raising enough money for Molly and her family to get their house back, all because of all the good deeds the McGees have done for the town ever since moving into Brighton. Andrea even goes as far as calling Molly her best friend.

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