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"It is a remarkable dichotomy. In many ways, Clark is the most human of us all. Then... he shoots fire from his eyes, and it is difficult not to think of him as a god. And how fortunate we all are that it does not occur to him."
Batman describing Superman

Occasionally, you get a hero with such personal magnetism that he is capable of persuading others, usually the Badass Bystander, to join him in his quest. Of course, the new companion has no qualms about killing for, or even dying for, the hero, despite having known him only briefly and facing many people who want him dead.

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This is a staple of fiction that may well be Older Than They Think. Many epics and legends chronicle the process by which a hero gathers a band of motley friends and allies of dubious background but doubtless courage and nobility. Even if the hero has no special quality compared to his subordinates, this is often his implied "power", Heart.

There's a few variants of this:

  1. Beat them up. Sparing someone's life after kicking their ass has a 50/50 chance of making them rethink their ways or at least earning their respect and maybe they'll eventually become a lifelong friend and ally.
  2. Conversely, beat up their enemy along with them. Fire-Forged Friends are always ready to come along.
  3. Give a kid a candy bar. Because hey, proving you're kind to cute orphans is the best way to get their Caretaker to dump them to come with you!
  4. Save their life. Simple: save someone's life, or buy their freedom, and they'll be your slave forever!
  5. Tell them your quest. Who knows? Maybe they too are out to put a stop to Doctor Demonica? A particularly idealistic or persuasive hero can pull this off with gusto on even the most jaded.
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Often at the center of a Character-Magnetic Team. Contrast with The Dulcinea Effect, which usually involves the hero falling victim to a similar phenomenon at the hands of a member of the opposite sex, and Hitchhiker Heroes. A female Magnetic Hero who leads male characters with The Dulcinea Effect may be a Jeanne d'Archétype. On a larger scale, the usual subject of A Protagonist Shall Lead Them.

The resultant group generally turns out to be a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits. On a large enough scale, the hero will have created their own variation of The Cavalry or Big Damn Heroes. If it actually sticks around for a while, you may get True Companions or a Badass Crew.

Contrast Socially Awkward Hero and Hero with Bad Publicity.

Has nothing to do with a hero with Magnetism Manipulation, unless there's a Magnetic Hero with Magnetism Manipulation.

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Other examples:

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    Comic Books 
  • Batman:
    • Nightwing is a huge one too, to the point where some believe his superpower is charisma. When he showed up to a fight with multiple generations of Teen Titans, Superboy noted how everyone instantly followed his lead. He also once convinced every hero on Earth, without question, to jump into a parallel dimension (saving them all). Batman even said it's one of the reasons he's proudest of Dick — unlike Bats, he can gain and keep allies. So essentially he's "Batman with social skills."
    • The Dark Knight Returns:
      • It's deconstructed by extending it to include Batman's villains. One psychiatrist in-universe claims that Batman's mere force of presence forces weaker-willed people to act accordingly, hence his Rogues Gallery of mentally-deranged individuals. Given that The Joker comes out of a decade-long catatonia in response to Batman's return, Doctor Wolper might have been on to something.
      • By the end of the story, the Mutants, the most violent and vicious street gang in Gotham, join Batman to become his trainees and keep the city safe. Half of them rebrand themselves as "The Sons of Batman" even before Batman officially recruits them.
  • Captain America is so well-respected by the superhero community that they usually follow his lead whether he's their official leader or not. This is because he's both incredibly competent despite not having superpowers and because they trust him to always be true to the right ideals. It comes to a point that when he fails them, the whole community gets demoralized (ex. in Civil War.)
  • Cosmic Boy (in most continuities) is the default and first leader of the Legion of Super-Heroes because his charismatic personality and optimism draw people to him. He also happens to be a hero with Magnetism Manipulation.
  • John Constantine of Hellblazer attracts friends with his charming and magnetic personality, but they all eventually either get offed by the many Cosmic Horror Story villains or screwed over by Constantine himself. He gets called out on this many times, but despite constantly flirting with the Moral Event Horizon, he's never quite passed it in 20 years of stories.
  • Superman:
    • The Man of Steel is at, or near, the forefront of nearly every major event in The DCU since he began his career of heroics. If not just because of his incredible power, then for who he is as a symbol, and the sheer number of other heroes he's befriended and/or inspired through the years.
    • Supergirl has also been known to inspire and be able to rally together and lead other heroes. In "Good-Looking Corpse", where she quickly puts together a completely new and very diverse team of teenager heroes by merely asking them, the main villain remarks she is a danger to his plans mainly because of her capability to get very different people working together. In Smallville Season 11 storyline "Argo" Kara automatically takes charge of the situation, and all Legionnaires treat her as their de facto leader without any argument whatsoever.
    • Jonathan Samuel Kent's niceness pays off in making him extremely likable to others. Wonder Woman takes a shine to him immediately despite her previous romance with the New 52 Superman, Sara or at least her robotic duplicate is perfectly willing to stay behind and sacrifice herself for Jon despite only just meeting him due to the immediate kindness he displayed to her. The Teen Titans are also willing to induct him as an official member after just one night of working together. Compare this to the Titans' relationship with Damian, which is tense at best given his abrasiveness even after working with him for months. He's also on very good terms with Simon Baz, whom Jon simply calls "Baz" while giving him a hearty high-five, and Cyborg, due to their shared appreciation for video games to the point of having the same favorite character while hanging out aboard the Watchtower in Justice League #22.
  • Rodimus demonstrates a knack for this in IDW's Transformers stories, especially at the start of Transformers: More than Meets the Eye where he rallies a small army of Autobots to follow him on what's essentially a fool's errand with his speeches.
  • Cyclops of the X-Men, especially in recent years. With the mutant population decimated, he was able to unite every one of them who remained under his flag, took them to a Utopia to keep them safe and use each one of their skills and powers in the most useful manner possible to fight off attackers and aggressors. Even when the X-Men were split, and eventually he was possessed by a Cosmic God and discredited after he went insane with power, he's able to get a lot of support from the public, partially because of the good deeds he did while 'evil' and because of his unique ability to make charismatic speeches without fuddling words at the drop of a hat.
  • Yoko Tsuno: The protagonist seems to have a knack to make most female character she encounters yearn to become her friend, even when they begin as antagonists.
  • Wonder Woman is admired by civilians, other superheroes, and even some villains because of her incredible power, complex wisdom, genuine compassion, and humble attitude.

    Fan Works 
  • Rosario Vampire: Brightest Darkness:
    • In Act II, it's revealed that when Dark first defected from Fairy Tale, several other former agents decided to follow his example, with Kenzo Shikazan's gang idolizing him.
    • In Act III, during the big fight to prevent Fairy Tale from destroying Yokai Academy, Tsukune and co.'s efforts to do so inspire the vast majority of the student body to aid them.
  • In Star Wars fanfic By the Grace of Lady Vader Padme inspires fanatic loyalty in her subjects and wins allies for her case with astonishing ease. This later leads her to become a new Empress, when Palpatine is overthrown. It is deconstructed, when she goes down the Sanity Slippage and her fanatic subjects lose their moral compass.
  • Child of the Storm
    • Loki notes this of Captain America, Thor and Harry — he's charismatic, but they have a magnetic x-factor that draws people in. In Steve's case, Loki even thinks that not trusting him is like thinking the sky is green.
    • Harry, meanwhile, has assidulously drawn in every single major player in the younger generation of heroes, either directly or, at most, at one step removed. Most of the rest of the superhero community has ties to him too. A lot of the circumstance was manufactured by Strange, via Wanda's blessing, but a lot of it is simply who he is.
    • Carol is a more downplayed example; even before she meets Harry, she's got Lex and Jean-Paul at her back- which, given how secretive and emotionally cautious both are, is no mean feat. Later, she drags a whole bunch of others in her slipstream, including others, like Monica Rambeau, Peter Parker, and Gambit.
  • More examples of "Magnetic Villains" in The Darkness Series: Voldemort, being the magically appointed Dark Lord which all darksiders are magically bound to follow has this naturally. Also Harry.
  • Popular Firefly fanfic Forward says this is Mal's talent—attracting talented, brilliant people, and winning their loyalty.
  • In Gods of This New World a Death Note fic Light is a Magnetic Villain. He already had the loyalty of Misa (killed the guy that murdered her parents), but he also wins over the allegedly neutral Ryuk (give the Shinigami an apple), his Arch-Enemy L (because Defeat Means Friendship), and later Near, L's successor.
  • Harry in Knowledge is Power, even more than he is in canon: even when he's going into rages that make CAPSLOCK!Harry from Order of the Phoenix look calm and effing and blinding at everyone in sight, everyone who's not a Designated Villain thinks he's wonderful and they all fall over themselves to join him.
  • In Memento Vivere, a Final Fantasy X fanfiction, Braska fills this trope with his charisma.
  • In Rurouni Kenshin and Star Wars crossover Shadows In Starlight by Vathara Kenshin has an ability to easily form force-bonds, which means he can inspire Undying Loyalty and quickly make friends. It’s one of the reasons his former employers fear him so much and will do anything to either eliminate or have him under their control.
  • Vale Whitaker, the heroine of the Hunger Games fanfiction Some Semblance of Meaning, is a Magnetic Hero. Even in the midst of the Games, she manages to make plenty of allies: Kit, Fen, Lark, Phlox ( though she quickly betrayed her), and finally, Privileged Rival Obsidian.
  • Sehnsucht plays with this in regards to main character Reiki Noriko and her best friend, Sawada Tsunayoshi (the main character of Reborn! (2004)) — while Noriko is the one who brings in more people into their ever-growing circle of friends, the reason they all stay is for Tsuna.
  • Though the Lady Inquisitor is an All-Loving Hero, the Lord Inquisitor in All This Sh*t is Twice as Weird is one of these. He draws people's loyalty through their admiration for his noble character and heroic deeds.
  • Socrates from The Conversion Bureau fic Beacon of Hope is an Antivillain version, he's a newfoal Boomerang Bigot who managed to create an entire country based on human values out of other newfoals and later pony immigrants, despite the fact that he openly despises natural-born ponies and everyone knows it (his advisors convinced him allowing for immigration proves his point.)
  • Jaune Arc in Service with a Smile is just a Nice Guy who serves really good coffee, but everyone from Team RWBY to Junior to Cinder Fall likes him for that same reason. It helps that everyone and their boss Must Have Caffeine.
  • Jaune Arc again in A Monster's Marriage somehow manages to befriend every villain he meets, from marrying Cinder Fall to acting as a Parental Substitute to Mercury Black to befriending Adam Taurus. The only villain who's personally met him and doesn't adore Jaune is Roman, who's terrified of the man he believes to be The Man Behind the Man for Cinder. Over the course of the story, Jaune marries to Cinder, functionally adopts Emerald and Mercury, and is adopted by Neo.
  • Deconstructed in Professor Arc. Jaune inadvertently fakes his way into a teaching job at Beacon. Despite his lack of training, he manages, through a combination of luck and skill, to become respected and loved by staff and students alike. Jaune, however, ends up dreading that people aren't really drawn to him, but his glowing reputation.
  • Xander in Colors and Capes seems to have a knack for befriending almost anyone. The Justice League members get along well with the new hero, most villains adore him as their favorite bartender, and he's Friends with Benefits with half a dozen different women on both sides of the law. Several heroes and villains have taken to stealing samples of Xander's personal products to determine how he's doing it, but Batman confirms it's just Xander's natural empathy and unusual way of thinking, such as curing Cheetah and Baby Doll through other villainsnote .
  • A Finely Honed Blade: Taylor, with one character even describing it as a kind of personal gravity. Word of God is that it's the Queen Administrator's doing.
  • Luffy's charisma is so powerful that even the star of a Self-Insert Fic isn't immune to it. In This Bites!, Cross had rehearsed in his head how he'd plan out his interaction with Luffy and his stated dream to be King of the Pirates. But when Luffy actually said those words with his usual level of conviction, Cross was caught flatfooted by how much it felt like a statement of fact that Luffy would reach that goal, future knowledge be damned.
  • Girl Genius fanfic Raised by Jägers has Agatha Heterodyne. In the first chapter she has a conversation with a boy her age and he is confused when he instinctively calls her "mistress." At TPU, even while hiding her Spark, she still corrals all the students and most of the staff.
  • Atonement: According to Ciara, this is Tether's real power. Her "True Healer" shard suppresses the shards' need for conflict, causing capes who spend a lot of time around her to become more stable and allowing her to redeem numerous villains.
  • Played with in Sehnsucht. While Noriko is the one who brings people into their group, the ultimate reason they all stay is for Tsuna.
  • Kara of Rokyn: When it's suspected that Lex Luthor is behind Superman's sudden and unexplained disappearance, Supergirl quickly and easily rallies together all kind of heroes and normal people and gets all of them absolutely on board with her mission to find and save Superman, not only out of loyalty or gratitude towards her cousin, but also because she's just so charismatic, energetic and determined.
  • Final Fantasy VII Another Side has Zack. It's implied that Cissnei and Sephiroth would not even be in the party in the first place if their original goal wasn't saving Zack from his Shinra Army Ending, and Kunsel joins for Zack's sake. He's also extremely close to Cloud and Aerith, and was the first of the trio (the other two being Sephiroth and Cissnei) to warm up to Barret and the other members of AVALANCHE.
  • Prehistoric Park Reimagined: Young park manager and rescue team leader Drew Luczynski has a very strong bravado that helps attract and win over the rest of the park staff. However, he also deconstructs this trope in that the same bravado and self confidence that inspires people and wins them over into working with him also just as easily ends up putting off and repelling those very same people.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Buckaroo Banzai, the hero of The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, has already gathered a team of variously awesome people, and collects another one in the course of the movie.
  • The 1982 Conan the Barbarian (1982) film. Conan releases Subotai from chains in exchange for his companionship. The two of them meet Valeria while robbing a temple of Thulsa Doom. Conan later runs into the wizard on his journey to assassinate Thulsa Doom. The sequel, Conan the Destroyer, relies more on Avengers Assemble, but Zula's recruitment is an example of this trope.
  • King Arthur in most of his incarnations in film, but most notably John Boorman's Excalibur. If you're fighting a fully-armed knight, get the better of him, and demand he swears faith to you with your sword at his neck, you generally don't ask him to knight you and hand over your Infinity +1 Sword to him when he objects to giving you his allegiance because you're a squire and thus he outranks you. On the other hand, if you're the knight in question you generally don't use said sword to knight said squire when he kneels before you to accept your knighting and then kiss his hand in fealty ... unless the squire, of course, is a Magnetic Hero.
  • Played remarkably straight (along with several other tropes) in the movie Krull. Prince Colwyn got an Ergo The Magnificent, a group of escaped prisoners intent on robbing him, a Blind Seer and a cyclops to join his party.
  • About the first third of The Magnificent Seven consists of gathering the seven using this.
  • Morpheus in The Matrix. His ability to convince people to take risks irritates the more pragmatic Commander Lock.
  • In the Pirates of the Caribbean series, this seems to sum up Captain Jack Sparrow's recruiting technique.
  • The Terminal: Viktor Navorski slowly grows into this role. He slowly builds friendships with various airport employees. After he helps the Russian man who needed pills for his father, every airport employee starts looking up to him. After he leaves for New York, everyone follows him to save goodbye, and offer him gifts.
  • X-Men Film Series: Professor X is exceptionally charismatic because he's gifted with the uncanny skill to influence people (without the use of his psychic ability) who hardly know him to risk their lives for him and/or uphold his philosophy against his enemies. In the time span of no more than a year (with some breaks, as Logan was digging around for his past at Alkali Lake, and later was "passing through"), Wolverine goes from mocking the Professor's paraplegia ("What do they call you, Wheels?") to being "tamed" by him. In X-Men: First Class, Charles is a very attentive and earnest coach who is able to shape the adolescent Ragtag Bunch of Misfits that he has recruited into an effective paramilitary group within a short period of time, and his new team is strong enough to withstand the more experienced Hellfire Club. In X-Men: Apocalypse, Cyclops, Quicksilver and Nightcrawler endanger themselves to rescue Xavier, whom they had only met once (or in the case of Kurt Wagner, he didn't even get the chance to talk to the Professor before the latter was captured), and they all elect to become full-fledged members of the X-Men.

    Literature 
  • In the Belgariad novels, Ce'Nedra becomes this trope as well, albeit that it's much more consciously manipulated by those supporting her, and she actually feels some remorse over being the Magnetic Heroine to her army.
  • Jason from The Beyonders. Unlike most of the people he meets, he's 100% normal — no special powers, no special skills, no lifelong training, nothing. However, he's extremely good at persuading others to join his cause, and serves as the rallying point and emotional glue of the entire resistance group. Notably, all of his group consider this an extremely valuable trait, and when he begins to worry that he doesn't have much to offer them, they're quick to remind him that without him, there'd be no "them."
  • In the Books of Samuel, David is one of these, at least at first. The people fall in love with him, Jonathan goes so far as to give him his sword, and even when on the run from Saul, David gathers a group of "outlaws" around him much as Robin Hood would 2300 years later.
  • The Chosen: Rebbe Saunders. Not only is he a charismatic and beloved "Rabbi Man" but the Back Story shows Hidden Depths that reveals he is more than just the demanding father we see. In Russia during the many excesses of the chaos there he had led his people to immigrate to America. Reuven finds it odd that a rabbi would have such autocratic power and it is; Danny's sect is odd in that respect. In a way though, Reuven is completely missing the point that Rebbe Saunders was also the first one in his community to think of a good idea about how to get out of their difficulties.
  • Stephen King's The Dark Tower series calls this effect "Ka", with a good bit of You Can't Fight Fate thrown in. Roland is magnetic, possibly in addition to ka. His ka-tet all end up seeing him as a father, despite knowing that he would off them at any point to reach the Tower. Of course, this might be different towards the end.
  • Discworld
    • Cohen the Barbarian has this sort of power. As Rincewind explains it, when you interact with him for long enough, you see the world the way he does... and want to be part of it.
    • Carrot is the driving force behind the expansion of the City Watch, and its large presence of non-humans.
      • This trope is played with in Carrot's case, as it is mentioned that he could get people to do just about anything but does not, possibly because of the negative consequences of this trope. He's a Magnetic Hero who doesn't believe that heroes are a particularly good solution. In Men at Arms he remarks to the Patrician that people only need a hero when times are bad; they need peace and stability every day.
    • Speaking of, Corporal Nobbs is probably an inversion. He's so horrible, he's fascinating, and people are drawn to him just to see what he might do next.
    • Moist Von Lipwig has traces of this as well, as evident by how he gradually rebuilds the postal service in Going Postal.
  • In The Dragon and the George, Jim Eckert is surprised to find a band of True Companions coalescing around him.
  • In the Dragonlance novels the elven princess Laurana is a remarkably charismatic figure whose incredible beauty, charm, and courage inspires thousands to join her army.
  • Harry Dresden of The Dresden Files: Although a very powerful wizard in his own right, one of his most valued assets might be the staggering number of allies he has acquired/known/converted over the years.
  • Paul Atreides of Dune.
  • Jenna in the Great Alta Saga attracts followers everywhere she goes; they eventually declare her a Messianic Archetype.
  • Harry Potter, who attracts problem as much as people willing to help him. It develops him well enough to make Harry accept occasional leadership roles, such as "teaching" Dumbledore's Army and captaining the Quidditch team.
  • Lord Asriel and Marisa Coulter of His Dark Materials are both imbued with an uncanny ability to persuade people over to their side, to command and convince them to obey. Their daughter, Lyra, is nothing if not more so, as almost everyone who meets her takes an immediate liking to her and wants to help her.
  • Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark from The Hunger Games.
  • In The Hunt for Red October Russian officers and men had once competed to get berths with Ramius and he was accused of forming a "cult of personality". Once the Americans board his sub there is a sense of him recruiting them!
  • InCryptid: Antimony Price. After being utterly alone at the end of Magic for Nothing, with not even a mouse to accompany her, she gets a job at Lowryland because an old cheer team friend was the hiring manager, finds roommates in Fern (who she knew from roller derby) and Megan, and is later joined by Sam and Cylia. All of them except Megan accompany her to New Gravesend, where James joins their crew of True Companions. She knew most of these people already, but they all happened to be in the right place and time to join her (and at least in Cylia's case, her inner luck told her to go to Florida).
  • Judge Dee: Three of Judge Dee's trusted lieutenants are criminals who abruptly reformed after their first encounter with him. He occasionally has trouble getting shut of attractive young women who've assisted him too. Magnetic is definitely the word.
  • In Myth Adventures, Skeeve's generosity and caring draws in a fiercely loyal group of associates, many of whom were originally his adversaries. Massha defines the process in M.Y.T.H. Inc. Link:
    He's always gettin' in over his head tryin' ta do what he thinks is right, and a body gets the feelin' ... I don't know, that if you stand beside him he just might be able to pull it off. Even if it don't work out, you feel you've been doin' somethin' good with your life instead of just hangin' in there for the old number one.
  • The Pendragon series has Bobby Pendragon. He can make friends with all of the travelers in every world in a matter of minutes of meeting them and, it was said on more than one occasion he would be the only one to beat Saint Dane. He does.
  • Percy Jackson and The Heroes of Olympus: Percy Jackson. He's even described as the 'glue' that holds the True Companions together.
  • Protector of the Small's Keladry of Mindelan. Seriously. This Badass Normal girl makes friends with EVERYONE (except the bad guys) and those that don't befriend her at least respect her (save the bad guys). Kids, Commonfolk, pages, birds... Kel will never be one of those heroes that fights alone in dark places because while she may not be a Wild Mage or have the Gift, she's got the superpower of building one of the most loyal band of True Companions in a few hundred pages. They won't let her go off and do anything stupid without them.
  • Schooled: Cap averts this, with his odd appearance making him the butt of every joke and the school's biggest loser. Once he saves the bus driver with a stunt, suddenly everybody starts making tie-dye shirts and practicing Tai Chi.
  • Amaurn of the Shadowleague books, though, unusually for this trope, he's very much an Anti-Hero.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire: Robert Baratheon is an anti-heroic who is described as a charismatic charmer who can make friends of his enemies.
  • In The Spirit Thief, Eli has a way with spirits that makes them like him and want to help him very quickly. He's a bit worse with gaining support of humans, though.
  • The Red Knight of The Traitor Son Cycle has an almost superhuman ability to make friends and command loyalty from people — it takes him less than six months for Morean soldiers to demand that he be placed on the throne, and at one point, Gavin notes that despite having only served alongside him a year, he already feels like he's been in their mercenary company since its inception.
  • Athos in 20 Years After, the sequel to Alexandre Dumas' The Three Musketeers. He and Aramis go to England to help King Charles I while D'Artagnan and Porthos (acting on Mazarin's orders) are supposed to be on Oliver Cromwell's side. It takes Athos one scene to convince d'Artagnan that a true gentleman can only fight on the king's side.
  • John Rumford in the dark, near-future military thriller Victoria. Despite his notorious lack of the social graces, Rumford has seemingly immense natural persuasiveness and charisma, drawing people to himself and convincing them of his views almost without trying. For a few examples: the Christian Marines immediately elect him as their leader; he convinces the Black Muslims who capture him to surrender to him instead; and once Governor Adams proclaims independence, he and his military advisors (including actual generals who have joined the rebellion) listen with great interest to the former captain and current militia leader's suggestions, ending up making him chief of the new general staff.
  • Miles Naismith Vorkosigan, in the Vorkosigan Saga by Lois McMaster Bujold. He's part military genius, part con man, and he has allies and people in his debt across the galaxy. When an organization tries to oppose Miles, he tends to end up in charge of it by the end.
  • In Warrior Cats, Firestar's heroic actions and good-hearted nature turns almost everyone to his side eventually. Yellowfang's Secret even shows that he snapped Yellowfang out of her depression just by talking with her for a few minutes.
  • It's a plot-point that Wheel of Time's Rand Al'Thor and his friends have this quality. Of course, this magnetism is but one manifestation of reality itself warping around them.
  • The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: Dorothy and pals all want to see the Wizard, but for different reasons.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. proves that this trope is in full play for the Marvel Cinematic Universe's Phil Coulson, who can inspire people to follow him straight into Hell without flinching if he asks it of them. Remarkably, he is entirely physically unassuming (until he starts shooting or punching people, as you'd expect of a SHIELD agent), but he has so much sheer, magnetic charisma that people treat him like he's an Old Hollywood hero come to life. Which... he kind of is, actually. The common refrain: "Coulson has a plan."
  • Doctor Who:
    • This is how the Doctor picks up nearly all of their companions and the majority of their non-companion allies. People usually start doing what they say within minutes of meeting them, however batshit insane they may have been acting.
    • Lampshaded in the novelisation of "Shada", where Clare, who is unusually clever, notices the magnetic effect that the Doctor has on her mind (depicted as being borderline Emotion Control) and finds it a bit creepy, not to mention a bit sexist as she finds herself acting like a Neutral Female as a result. Her attempts to defy her desire to love and trust the Doctor and do everything he says drive her to start solving the mystery herself, leading to her accidentally launching the TARDIS of a retired Time Lord.
    • The trope is subverted occasionally, particularly in the disturbing episode "Midnight". As everyone is trapped in one small room, the Tenth Doctor can't actually prove he knows what he's doing, and his attempts to take charge just make the panicked Muggles turn on him. Ironically the end of the episode provides a slight reconstruction when the first person to turn on the Doctor is ultimately the one who sacrifices herself to save him.
    • "Journey's End" provided a deconstruction then a reconstruction. The Doctor is called out on this by Davros of all people, who asks how many have died in the Doctor's name. Cue flashbacks of nearly every Mauve Shirt in the revived series. The reconstruction is how the story is resolved: every major character in the revived series comes together to save the universe, without having to do any of the morally gray things the Doctor or companions are sometimes forced to do.
    • "The Vampires of Venice". Rory provides another deconstruction when he calls out the Doctor for this: "It's not that you make people take risks, it's that you make them want to impress you. You make it so they don't want to let you down. You have no idea how dangerous you make people to themselves!"
      • Ironically enough, he goes over to help Amy save the Doctor and stays by his side. The Doctor himself jabs Rory for this. This is Foreshadowing: in spite of his concerns about Amy, Rory's the one who sacrifices his life to save the Doctor's. He gets better.
  • Definitely happens on Farscape, but it's hard to say exactly which attribute it is that draws people to John Crichton. It's probably a mix of all of the above, and a just general lack of what to do without him.
  • Game of Thrones has Daenerys Targaryen. The few people she's come across that haven't ended up dead for crossing her so far have joined her, either out of personal debt or being enchanted by her exotic nature. Her typical M.O. is to conquer a city, free the underclass, and invite them to follow her to the next city. Wash, rinse, repeat. It gets a little tougher once she settles down to try and actually rule, but by that point, she's got enough momentum that people start coming to her. She is highly beautiful, charismatic, and intelligent, and has a presence that few can resist.
  • Steve McGarrett in the re-imagined Hawaii Five-0 recruits his team in the pilot by basically going to each of them and saying "Come work for me". In the second season premiere after being framed for murder, even characters like Dr. Max who he's only ever interacted with on a professional level, are willing to put themselves on the line to keep him out of jail and help him prove his innocence. Even ne'er-do-well informant Kamekona offers to invoke Bolivian Army Ending on his say so.
  • Gentaro Kisaragi from Kamen Rider Fourze makes it his personal goal to make friends with everyone at his high school. He's lived up to that promise as he has saved some of his new friends' lives from Monsters of the Week, as well as getting to know the personal issues of some of them as well. The villain even compares him to a gravitational lens It's to the point where the Mid-Season Upgrade deals with magnetism.
  • Merlin is highly magical, but also seems to possess the innate ability to make every man, woman, and child that he comes across fall hopelessly in love with him. With the exception of Prince Arthur and King Uther, Merlin has made immediate and life-long friends with cast regulars such as Guinevere, Lancelot, and Gwaine, as well as guest stars such as Freya and Gilli. Most, if not all, are willing to die for him within mere moments of their meeting. At least one has come back from the dead in order to aid him on his quest.
  • Leroy Jethro Gibbs in NCIS. His whole team says so. But he only uses his powers for good. Ask Abby.
  • Harold Finch on Person of Interest, due to his integrity and dedication to helping people, earns the Undying Loyalty of the people he hired (Reese and Shaw), the people he saved (most notably Caleb), and even people who started out as bad guys (Fusco, Elias, and Root).
  • Scandal: Olivia Pope fixes things, including people. Said people explicitly say that they would follow her off cliffs.
  • John from Sherlock. He seems to have this "you can completely confide in me" aura around him. Sherlock befriends him. Mycroft confides in him. Government scientists will tell him about their experiments even if they're aware John is just an average guy. The only person we've seen him talk with that was completely immune to John's charming skills is Moriarty, who's an Axe-Crazy psychopath bordering on Omnicidal Maniac.
  • In Star Trek: Voyager, Janeway does this, first getting Chakotay and the crew from his ship to join, then Neelix, then later Seven of Nine, then even later, they pick up several children who were assimilated by the Borg. Most of them return to their various homeworlds, but one remains on Voyager.
  • In Star Trek: Picard, Jean-Luc has to rely on this trope since he's retired from Starfleet. Naturally, by the end of the third episode he's collected a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits and a Cool Starship to boot.
  • His reputation might have been tainted by his boneheaded move in the Heroes vs. Villains season, but back in Survivor: Tocantins, J.T. was the epitome of a Magnetic Hero who had even the members of the opposing tribe willing to sacrifice their chances of winning for him and who could backstab his allies and have them still completely trust him afterwards to the point that some viewers wondered if he had some supernatural Charm Person ability to make everyone around him fall in love with him. Heck, even in the HvV season where he became a lot less heroic and should have had a HUGE target on his back due to his Flawless Victory in Tocantins, he somehow managed to avoid being even considered as someone who needed to be voted out by his tribemates until the merge and even then would likely have made it even farther if not for his moronic idol play.
  • Stefan from The Vampire Diaries. He has always been popular, well-liked, and respected since his human life. He has the ability to charm others and persuade people to listen to him without the use of mind control. Not to mention that many people find Stefan likeable.

    Podcasts 
  • Despite being The Ghost, Hornblas from Brimstone Valley Mall is this. He's very charming and friendly for a demon, and easily attracts many friends of varying temperaments. It was him that befriended all the main characters in the backstory and brought them together, arranging for Hell to assign all of them to the same area, and suggesting they form a band. Part of the first season's story arc is the others learning to function without him when he goes missing at the start of the series, since he was the glue that held the gang together.

    Religion and Mythology 
  • Baldr from Norse Mythology. A Bishōnen, all-loving fertility god, he was such a nice guy that even physical weapons refused to harm. A favourite pastime of the other gods was to throw weapons at him and watch them bounce off because even the weapons liked him too much to harm him. Then along came Loki, the god of mischief, who finds one thing that can harm Baldr: a sprig of mistletoe. One prick from it and Baldr's dead. Then everyone in creation wept for him, even the nasty mistletoe that had done the deed: everyone of course, except Loki who was doomed to be chained to a rock and tortured by a snake until the end of time for his trouble.
  • Rama, in Ramayana. When a plot causes his rightful throne to go to his brother Bharata, Rama is delighted for his brother's good fortune, without any concern for his own loss of status. When he's exiled by this same plot, he has to talk the entire country (including Bharata) out of coming with him. He collects allies everywhere he goes, just by dint of his goodness. Rama and Sita are supposed to be the great lovers beyond time and space, but the effect is more than Rama loves everyone, everyone loves Rama, and Sita is a member of "everyone".

    Tabletop Games 
  • In Dungeons & Dragons third edition and Pathfinder, the Leadership feat turned you into one of these by granting you loyal followers.
  • In Forgotten Realms Cormyrean dynasty Obarskyrs are born charismatic. Once very young princess Alusair slipped from her guards while in Waterdeep. The city watch found her in Dripping Dagger — a mercenary hangout with the door covered in bloodstains and weapon marks. During this time patrons played with her, let her taste local beverages, and taught some tricks with weapons. The watchman who had to dodge a dagger she was throwing at the door marveled no one here knew who she is. Her father was amazed only by the amount of salty language she learned in about one hour. Of course, adult Obarskyrs in their land are even more popular — no wonder they remained in power about millennium and half.
  • One of the main points behind the charisma stat is to turn you into one of these.
  • Magic: The Gathering has this with cards like Seraph, which steals your opponent's creatures when they die. It's Awesome, but Impractical because of the high mana cost, at which time your opponent's biggest creatures should be much bigger than 4/4.
  • Princess: The Hopeful: This is one of the hats of the Graces, those Princesses Called to act as leaders and inspire others.

    Visual Novels 
  • Phoenix Wright in Ace Attorney. His honest drive for truth and justice eventually warrants the admiration and respect of several people and Phoenix is typically somewhat involved in the Character Development of other major characters. He attracts a lot of True Companions because of this trait.
  • Seven Kingdoms: The Princess Problem plays with this: the protagonist character is placed among a wide variety of other members of royalty and associated servants and is able to win them over and/or romance them in many different ways. However, to stop the main character from feeling like everyone loves them, the creator did put in two obvious limits: one character will immediately dislike the main character and act as their rival from then on, to show not everyone can be won over, and one character appears like a typical love interest and even has a love meter indicating they are but if you befriend him you will learn that he is actually gay and therefore unromanceable, though he can become a close friend.
  • The protagonist Akira from Spirit Hunter: NG. Despite his lack of people skills and intimidating aura, Kaoru realizes that there's just something about Akira that draws people towards him. Even though he prefers working alone, he starts the game with three close relations and only builds them up from there.
  • In Your Turn to Die, Sara has a knack for swaying others to her side... but it's far from foolproof, naturally hinging upon their willingness to trust her. In fact, some of the others are wary of her specifically because they find it strange and suspicious that the other survivors are placing so much faith in some random teenaged girl. Sara also struggles with the implicit responsibility this entails, blaming herself for things she couldn't prevent... or the impact of difficult choices she's made.

    Webcomics 
  • Axe Cop is all over this like an axe on a bad guy's neck. His recurring sidekick (variously Flute Cop, Dinosaur Soldier, Avocado Soldier, Uni-Avocado Soldier, Viking Cop...) is secretly his brother, and I don't think there's been an explanation for Wexter yet, but any time anything bad happens, Axe Cop announces "we need to have more try-outs" and people pour out of the woodwork to join him. Examples: the Moon Ninja Brothers, Sockarang, Uni-Man and his family, Chihuahua Soldier, that cyborg lion, the King of the Mermaids, "a wrestler", Leaf Man, Mr. Wilkins, those various aliens from the Bad Guy Planet Two arc...
  • In Blue Yonder, a villain thinks Jared is this -- winning him some respect -- when he sees that other heroes showed up to help him.
  • "Sparks" of Girl Genius have this as an explicit power; it was described as "a strange charisma".
    Mr. Rovainen: Ah—it is part of the power of the gifted. Those around them wish to aid them. To serve them. Even when we know them to be monsters. Heterodyne Sparks are alleged to be even more charismatic than the average Spark.
    • Agatha seems to be especially skilled in gaining people's loyalty. It's one reason Baron fears her so much. Some of it is explainable via inherited loyalties to her family, and the heroic reputations of her father and uncle specifically, but she's turned more than a few enemies to (at least temporary) allies.
  • In Kevin & Kell, each member of the core Dewclaw family (Kevin, Kell, Lindesfarne, Rudy, and Coney) has attracted a set of friends who can be relied upon, and in many cases those who are eventually persuaded to do so. This is especially true for the younger children, Rudy and Coney, who each has developed a set of friends — many from early childhood — who are just as proficient, resourceful, and/or reliable as they are.
  • Looking for Group, of course, is named for this sort of occurrence. It takes place there, too but not a lot.
  • No Rest for the Wicked: November is quite talented at this.
  • This trope is precisely how The Order of the Stick was formed.
  • In Sinfest, Monique manages, briefly, to attract the other characters to protest.
  • Tower of God: Twenty-Fifth Bam, who recruited a Magnificent Bastard of a Blue Blood, a Tomboy Princess, her haughty niece, and a giant bipedal alligator. And that's just his close friends.
  • In Wake The Sleepers, Oralee attaches herself to Locke.

    Web Original 
  • In the DEATH BATTLE! episode pitting Smokey the Bear against McGruff the Crime Dog, Wiz and Boomstick noted that, thanks to Smokey's popularity and message, he had actually caused an 80% decrease in forest fires in real life and has gone so far as to persuade The Addams Family to take up good fire safety!
  • Rob from Dimension Heroes brings a group together, not because he has any particularly appealing qualities, but because he unintentionally put them under fire from the enemy, thereby forcing them to become involved as part of the group.
  • Dreamscape: Dylan. The flashback in Episode 3 shows he was able to inspire Keela to escape from The Unworld, and a flashback in episode 5 shows he was able to get an isolated girl with a Hair-Trigger Temper (Betty) to realize how important teamwork is. The flashback in Epiosde 7 shows he was even able to get a curse placed on him to take the form of a human (Pita) just so he could talk it out of trying to kill him.
    Dylan: Well I'm better with my words than I am with my fists.
    • Ahjeen. In 'Over and Under', Anjren and Vampire Lord even say making friends with anyone is what Ahjeen is best at.
    • Alice quickly makes friends with anyone she meets, no matter who they are or what they've done in the past.
  • Sasha Hunter in Greek Ninja, although shown and claiming to not like people and even being rude to them a lot of the time, somehow manages to gather a group of capable fighters around her. The twist is, most of them join her on her quest even though she was unwilling to accept them. The only character she actually asked to join her on her own accord was Electra.
  • Due to the school setting of the early seasons it's hard to see, but the longer RWBY goes on, the more clear it becomes that Ruby Rose qualifies. She's able to rally future team RWBY and team JNPR in an instant, she befriends Penny when no one else wants to, she gains the respect of General Ironwood, and she defrosts Weiss. When Ruby heads to Haven after the events of volume 3, the members of Team JNPR don't hesitate to tag along, and tell her in volume 4 that she's the reason they're there. In volume 5, she convinces Oscar that the fight is worth it, and in volume 6 she's the reason Retired Badass Maria joins them for the long haul. When the entire group is facing monsters that weaponize depression, Ruby is the last to feel its effects and her distress is enough to convince everyone to act in spite of their apathy. When her Uncle Qrow goes through a Break the Believer arc, all it take to win him back is an impassioned speech from Ruby. When Emerald Sustrei is trying to decide what side she wants to be on, it's Ruby's attempts to save Penny that ultimately convince her to join the heroes. And of course, when they need to address all the kingdoms, Ruby is the one chosen to deliver the message, despite being a completely unknown figure. It's implied that, though he was initially interested in her because of her silver eyes, this innate ability to inspire and attract others is why Professor Ozpin accepted Ruby into Beacon in the first place.
    • To a lesser extent, this can be said to apply to Ruby's teammate, Blake Belladonna. As many fans have put it, half the plot of the show happens because various people love Blake, romantically or otherwise. The list includes her Phsyco Ex Boyfriend Adam Taurus, Ruby's sister Yang, the chameleon faunus Ilia, team leader Sun Wukong, and Blake's parents, Guira and Kali.
  • Chaka of the Whateley Universe seems to have this. She pulled Fey and Lancer along in her wake when they first met, and then helped pull Team Kimba together. Since then, she's also pulled in more boyfriends and girlfriends than any fourteen-year-old could possibly handle.

    Recently, her team-mates have begun pointing out that this is not a good thing, as far as her relationships go. Ayla does not expect it to end well, if/when Chaka's significant others all find out about each other, and has had to explicitly forbid Chaka from bringing both of them to his birthday party.

    Western Animation 
  • For all of his other shortcomings and quirks, this is precisely why Darkwing Duck is so successful. Despite his ego, he knows how to get and secure allies in his hour of need. Best demonstrated in the climax of "Just Us Justice Ducks" ("assemble!").
  • In the pilot episode of Futurama, Blithe Spirit Fry gets Leela and Bender to drop everything they're doing (in Bender's case, committing suicide) and permanently throw in their lots with him within about an hour of meeting them — and he's only been in the future for one afternoon. They get jobs with him at Planet Express and remain his closest companions for the rest of the series.
  • The protagonists of Here Comes the Grump travel from town to town enlisting the local folk to aid them in escaping from the eponymous Grump, who is always hot on their tail.
  • Metalocalypse — Although we don't know much about how the band was actually formed, Nathan Explosion seems to be capable of getting virtually anyone to do anything purely by his personal magnetism, at one point even convincing the most homophobic of his bandmates to attempt autofellatio in front of the others with a brief pep talk. Even the villains often comment on his so-called Josef Stalin-like ability to galvanize the masses, and how dangerous that is.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: Twilight Sparkle barely walks into Ponyville before her friends-to-be start flocking around her. She's even deliberately trying to keep them at a distance due to her mild antisocial tendencies (at first), but the magnetism is too great. They're not taking no for an answer.
  • Ready Jet Go!: Jet is beloved by everyone in Boxwood Terrace for his kindness and quirkiness. He became friends with Sean and Sydney the moment he met them. He's everything they both ever wanted, plus he's a literal space alien and can take them to Pluto in nine minutes flat. Mindy also sees him as a Cool Big Bro. The adults appreciate Jet for his optimism, creativity, and knowledge of space, and he has helped them with many problems. The other citizens of Boxwood Terrace idolize him, and even Mitchell grows to respect him by the end of the show, despite stalking him and trying to expose his alien identity.
  • Recess has TJ who frequently saves the playground through personality alone and is adored even by his enemies.
  • Star Wars Rebels
    • Hera Syndulla, who gathered a crew within a matter of days in a prequel novel, swayed Ezra to fight for the Rebellion, and even got her father's loyal lieutenants to side with her in a standoff. Ezra follows in her footsteps in her regard, supplemented by his natural empathic abilities, and has gotten quite a few ordinary people and even enemies to follow him by choosing the right words.
    • Just like Hera, Ezra Bridger being an All-Loving Hero (most of the time) is what brings the best out of people he meets, even if everyone else believes those people are lost causes. It works on numerous characters throughout the show and supporting material. In the finale, the majority of characters answering the call for aid aren't there because of the Rebellion or Lothal, but because Ezra was the one asking.
  • This is the primary modus operandi of Steven Universe, as well as his mother before him: gathering the loyalty of down-and-out Gems. Jasper even calls him out on it directly when he tries to recruit her.
  • Wander over Yonder: The All-Loving Hero Wander himself, who stops villains not by force, but by slowly befriending (and annoying) them with The Power of Love so they undergo a Heel–Face Turn. If this villain is just an underling (Westley, Beep-Boop) or someone who is just misunderstood and lashing out at the world (Destructor, The Black Cube of Darkness), this comes easy. If it's a galactic overlord, it's a long process, but Wander's patience and determination to see the good in people allows him to eventually pull through, as seen with Major Threat. However, there are some villains, such as Dr. Screwball Jones and Lord Dominator, who he can't get through to, but this doesn't diminish his spirit.

    Real Life 
  • Any great leader fits this trope. No leader can be great without it.
  • Innumerable ordinary heroes. You probably know a couple personally.
  • Both Winston Churchill and Adolf Hitler were Magnetic Heroes, in the eyes of their followers. Hitler was not heroic in any other sense. They had tens of millions of followers. Both managed to array great world powers behind them on the issue of the largest war in human history, based largely on the force of their personality and oratory. Hitler was a decorated soldier in World War, Churchill fought as a soldier/reporter in the Sudan and Boer Wars.

    Several people who met Hitler said he was magnetic. Of course, really, you should wonder about the testimony of someone who was granted an audience with Hitler. One of the chief appeals of Nazism was to give people a way to try to live fantasy in Real Life. That was one of the main points of the torchlight parades and the hocus-pocus. Thus if one is to convince factory workers that they were Proud Warrior Race guys, they need to have a Magnetic Hero just like the ones in poems did. If Hitler didn't fit the bill, the Ministry of Propaganda could easily enough pretend he did.
  • Horatio Nelson. The man was heavily into self-promotion, but he earned every accolade, and his ability to inspire men was even termed 'the Nelson effect'.
  • Stonewall Jackson. This is a man who, when his men are outnumbered 10 to 1, turns a full rout into a counter-attack through sheer force of personality.
  • Canada had Isaac Brock in the War of 1812, a savvy general who was able to persuade the Aboriginal leader, Tecumseh, to join forces with him so effectively that the Native Leader stood up, patted Brock on the shoulder and proclaimed, "This is a man!"
  • If you ask any Marine, General James "Mad Dog" Mattis seems to fit the bill, due to his combination of erudite oratory and ruthless honesty regarding the central theme that death has in the profession of arms.
    Alexander the Great would not be in the least bit perplexed by the enemy that we face right now in Iraq, and our leaders going into this fight do their troops a disservice by not studying — studying, vice just reading — the men who have gone before us. We have been fighting on this planet for 5,000 years and we should take advantage of their experience. ‘Winging it’ and filling body bags as we sort out what works reminds us of the moral dictates and the cost of competence in our profession.
  • George Washington in both The American Revolution and his term as first President of the United States. During the Revolution, the American Colonies were more like a loose conglomerate of separate states instead of a unified nation, so it was a matter of contention as to who would command their forces. Washington was a Virginian plantation owner, which gave him the support from the southern states, but his reputation in the French and Indian War also made him respected by the northern colonies as well. Washington's stature (six foot two) and reticent demeanor served him well as a dependable leader, and it was due to his charisma that the Continental Army was able to remain bound together despite their many defeats and the varied backgrounds and origins of the men under his command. Little wonder then, that Washington is the only President in American history to be elected unanimously.
  • Aaron Burr was this trope to such an extent that the guards in charge of taking him to Richmond to stand trial for treason in 1807 were given strict orders not to speak to him at all unless absolutely necessary, lest they find themselves unable to resist his charm. Even without talking to him, one guard, Thomas Malone, was still affected enough that when Burr started crying after a failed escape attempt, he found himself in tears as well.
  • There's a lot of room for debate on Cao Cao's motives and personal behaviour, but history makes it clear that he was this. When the Han Dynasty was usurped by Dong Zhuo, Cao Cao was just a minor noble from a family with a mixed reputation. But a combination of his dogged determination to fight Dong Zhuo, utter intolerance of corruption, and generous nature to those who joined him (regardless of their past) saw him become the dominant force in Northern China. Extraordinary men like Xun Yu, Xun You, Dian Wei, and Xiahou Dun, joined him in his early days and former enemies such as Zhang He, Zhang Liao, Jia Xu, and Zhang Xiu all gratefully accepted Cao Cao's offer to join him and worked faithfully for him until his death.
    • Cao Cao's one-time rival and childhood friend Yuan Shao was this in his youth. He was a charismatic and noble young man who starts an underground railroad for those wanting to flee the corrupt Han court and was a figurehead in the fight against Dong Zhuo. But his arrogance, tolerance of corruption, inability to discern good advice from bad and poor judgement saw his fledgling state collapse to the numerically inferior Cao Cao and his sons were too divided to recover after his death.
    • Sun Quan inherited an established state, but he was an exceptionally discerning man who cultivated the loyalty of his followers carefully and always knew the best man for the job. Unfortunately, his keen mind fell off the deep end in his later years and the resulting chaos kicked off the start of his empire's downfall.
    • Liu Bei, while definitely not a hero in the actual history of events, started as a sandal weaver and became an emperor. In truth, he relied heavily on the negotiating skills of his childhood friend Jian Yong until the establishment of his state but all the same he was a man with good judgement who attracted many talented men to him and used them well. For one thing, he kept Zhuge Liang in check while he was alive but after his death, Zhuge Liang became obsessed with his disastrous northern campaigns against Cao Wei that drained Shu Han's limited resources.


 
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Alternative Title(s): Hero LFG, Magnetic Heroes

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T'Challa Star-Lord

Having joined with the Ravagers in this variant timeline, T'Challa has been able to turn them from brigands into vigilantes along with recruiting unlikely allies: Thanos among them!

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