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Seeks Another's Resurrection

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Chances are throughout life someone you know is going to die in your lifetime, but some for whatever reason can't accept this new status quo and seek to defy the laws of nature and resurrect someone.

The Resurrection Seeker can come in two varieties:

The first is as a character driven by their mission to restore someone to life or undo their death. The beneficiary may be their One True Love, a dead little sister, a daughter or son, or true friend. They may have spent years, decades, or even longer trying to bring back that one person who's precious to them. Their methods may include Time Travel, Mad Science, or Forbidden Magic. The strength of their conviction may make them a Determinator or lead them to cross the Moral Event Horizon, especially if the author believes in Immortality Immorality. For romance especially, this overlaps with the Necromantic.

The second type is one in which someone seeks to resurrect an important individual in order to use the resurrectee to aid in the resurrector's own agenda. This variation is more likely to be done by a villain as part of an Evil Plan (in which case it overlaps with Breaking Out the Boss).

This is Older Than Dirt; see Egyptian Mythology and The Epic of Gilgamesh examples below.

Note that this is a motivation/plot trope, and does not apply to simply anyone who brings someone back from the dead or has the ability to do so; the drive to bring someone back must be a defining aspect of their character.

Supertrope to Resurrect the Villain and Rescued from the Underworld (for when it involves traveling to another world). Compare Immortality Seeker; contrast Death Seeker.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica: In a variation, Homura Akemi for Madoka Kaname. Homura's defining motivation and her primary power is eventually revealed to be her repeated time travel through a "Groundhog Day" Loop in an effort to create a timeline where Madoka doesn't die or become a witch.
  • Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha: Precia Testarossa for her daughter, Alicia Testarossa. Precia has already created a clone of Alicia with some of her memories, namely Fate Testarossa. Precia remains unsatisfied and seeks out the Jewel Seeds in order to bring the original Alicia back from death, while treating Fate like complete shit. In the TV show, she never realizes the error of her ways, but in The Movie, she realizes that she's forgotten Alicia's final wish, which was to have a sister.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist:
    • Bringing someone back from the dead is considered alchemy taboo, as any attempts often end in the beneficiary Coming Back Wrong and body part loss from whoever attempts it, such as the Elric brothers in their backstory trying to resurrect their mom and having her come back as a shriveling zombie and losing An Arm and a Leg (and Al's entire body) for their efforts. Attempting it in-series is shorthand for the character being (1) extremely talented, and (2) insanely devoted to whoever they attempt to resurrect. As it turns out, the alchemists who've done this are the only ones who can open the Gate for Father's plan, as they're the only ones to have seen "The Truth."
    • In the first anime, Hohenheim tried to bring his son back to life and made Envy, Dante is supposed to have committed human transmutation more than one time, and Scar's brother tried to bring back his dead girlfriend, creating Lust.
    • In both anime and manga, Izumi Curtis tried to return her stillborn baby to life, causing several of her internal organs to be taken.
  • The Big Bad of the Duelist Kingdom arc of Yu-Gi-Oh! is driven by a desire to revive his dead wife.
  • John Elwood Shepherd of Zombiepowder. joins up with powder hunters Gamma Akutabi and C.T. Smith in the hopes of finding the other Rings of the Dead to resurrect his sister, who was killed in the first chapter.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion: Gendo Ikari is trying to resurrect his wife, who was absorbed by an EVA unit during testing. He does this by mixing her DNA with an Angel's to produce Rei Ayanami and then using her for his Assimilation Plot. It falls apart when Rei refuses to go along with him.
  • Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE-:
    • Fai speculates that Fei Wang may have been created from someone else's (presumably Clow Reed's) desire to bring Yuuko back to life.
    • Fai D. Flourite wants to bring his brother back to life, and becomes the main villain's pawn in order to fulfill that wish. The latter attempts to manipulate other people into becoming Resurrection Seekers as well, with varying success.
    • At the end of the series, the protagonists hope to use a loophole in the laws of reality to resurrect the clones; since they were technically never considered "alive" in the traditional sense, they are not "dead" and thus may be brought back without damaging the fabric of reality.
  • Variable Geo: Bringing his deceased employer, Miranda, back to life is Damian's primary motivation throughout the series. Which is why he coerces Satomi into joining the VG tournament, as their test subject - with the intent of using her body as Miranda's new vessel.
  • Ban from The Seven Deadly Sins decides to help Princess Elizabeth save her kingdom from the Holy Knights who took over in hopes of being rewarded with a magic horn. He intends to use this horn to call upon a member of the Goddess Clan to resurrect his dead love, Elaine.
  • Naruto: Madara and Tobi/Obito's plan involves resurrecting the Ten Tailed Beast and absorbing it to complete a Mass Hypnosis jutsu; they created Akatsuki to help capture the other Tailed Beasts for that purpose. Later on, however, they abandoned the Mass Hypnosis part and Obito decides to seal the Ten-Tails inside him, granting him its vast powers.
  • Professor Viper/Cobra in Yu-Gi-Oh! GX accepted to work for Yubel, the Big Bad of season 3, so she would resurrect his adopted son in exchange. After he's done his part of the work, she agrees to reunite him with his son, though not in the way he expected.
  • In Children Who Chase Lost Voices Morisaki's motivation for descending to Agartha is to resurrect his dead wife Lisa.
  • Fairy Tail:
    • Jellal's goal as a Brainwashed and Crazy Arc Villain is to use the R-System to bring the The Dreaded Black Wizard Zeref back to life. Unfortunately, even if the heroes hadn't stopped him, it would've been All for Nothing because Zeref was never dead to begin with; the plan was simply Ultear's way of using Jellal as a scapegoat while her guild, Grimoire Heart, conducted their own plans for Zeref.
    • Grimoire Heart themselves believe Zeref to be in a "sleeping" state, forced to wander the earth with his true power and evil sealed off, and acquire keys that are said to "awaken" him. As with Jellal, this was All for Nothing as Zeref's inconsistent power was simply a side effect of his conflicting morals, and all Grimoire Heart accomplishes is Awakening the Sleeping Giant and embracing evil.
    • Zeref himself had this as his primary motivation in his youth to bring his dead little brother back to life. The R-System was just one of his original plans to facilitate this, which he abandoned due to being Awesome, but Impractical. He eventually settled on reviving his brother, Natsu, as a demon using his corpse.

    Comic Books 
  • Batman: Villain Victor Fries (Mr. Freeze), for his wife Nora.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: This was the driving force of Faith and Angel in their spinoff. After Angel, as Twilight, killed Giles, he and Faith sought to resurrect him.
  • Throughout 52, Ralph Dibney sought a way to resurrect his dead wife.
  • In his post-52 miniseries, Black Adam sought a way to bring Isis back to life.
  • Brian K. Vaughan's last arc on Runaways had Chase attempt to make a deal with the Gibborim to bring Gert back.
  • Doctor Doom's mother is in Hell, and (sometimes) his main goal is to save her.
  • Robin Tim Drake was reduced to this at one point. Over the course of a year (in-universe), Tim lost his girlfriend Stephanie Brown, his father, his stepmother, his best friends (Superboy and Impulse), and finally his mentor Batman. Following Infinite Crisis, Tim becomes obsessed with bringing Superboy and his father back to life (in Bruce's case he was simply convinced that Batman wasn't dead, (he was right). Eventually, every single one of those characters save Tim's father and stepmother was brought Back from the Dead, but not by Tim's hands.
  • Wonder Girl was equally obsessed with resurrecting Superboy (who was her boyfriend) to the point that she joined a Cult.
  • Transformers: More than Meets the Eye used this on Brainstorm, who built a time machine to save his dead love, but ended up getting sidetracked and trying to prevent the entire Cybertronian war. It went poorly.
  • Relative Heroes are a group of siblings (and the youngest one's babysiter) who are seeking out heroes to see if they can revive their dead parents. Oren and Deborah stay dead but their grandfather takes them in.

    Fan Works 
  • In the Alexandra Quick series, Alex spends most of the third book trying to bring back her brother, Max. Also parallelled in the fourth book as she decides to bring back the mind and memories of her biological mother, who is physically still alive, but her mind is considered lost and unrecoverable by other wizards.
  • In the Doctor Who fanfic "To Outsit Eternity", the Doctor, Jamie and Zoe encounter an immortal widower who's spent the last 13000 years working on a plan to resurrect his late wife. Who also happens to be Zoe.
  • The Legend of Korra fanfic Book Five: Legends this is the driving goal of Temuji. Seeking to restore his mother eventually comes to override any and all other goals, and even common sense in the end.
  • Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality: Harry makes it his goal from the very beginning to defeat death. This only transforms into "bring back the dead" when Hermione Granger dies. He preserves her corpse as well as possible (even transmuting it to hide it from the teachers who think he has an unhealthy obsession), and eventually manages to bring her back with the help of Voldemort and the Philosopher's Stone. Voldemort then does him a service by gifting Hermione with a true Horcrux (making any further death temporary), and transmuting her to have a troll's Healing Factor and a unicorn's purity (which includes an aura of innocence, perfect health, and indestructible teeth and nails). Harry wisely hides the truth of her resurrection from everyone else, and she becomes known as "the Girl Who Revived," credited with killing Voldemort for good by virtue of her resurrection.
  • Scoob and Shag: Ger joined Commander One on the chance that mastering the secrets of Ballyhoo could bring Arnold back.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • In Conan the Destroyer, Conan agrees to work for Queen Taramis after she promises to resurrect his deceased love Valeria in exchange for his services. In retrospect, he probably should have insisted on seeing proof that she could do this before making the deal.
  • The Mummy (1932): Imhotep tried to use a forbidden spell to return his girlfriend to life. The same spell is accidentally used to revive him in the present.
  • The Mummy (1999): Imhotep attempts to revive his beloved Anck-su-Namun, first in ancient Egypt, and later in 1926 after he is revived.
  • Conan the Barbarian (2011): The main villain, Khalar Zym, wants to use an Artifact of Doom to both resurrect his murdered wife and gain immense mystic power. That his wife was murdered to stop him from gaining said power just fueled his quest for vengeance.
  • Creator. Harry Wolper (Peter O'Toole) is a Nobel Laureate in biology (sic) who wants to bring his dead wife back to life by cloning her from some of her remaining cells. Of course, cloning her would only re-create her body and not her mind.
  • In Frankenhooker, when his gorgeous fiance "goes to pieces" in a freak lawnmower accident, aspiring mad scientist Jeffrey Franken is determined to put her back together again. With the aid of an explosive superdrug, he sets about reassembling his girlfriend, selecting the choicest bits from a bevy of raunchy New York prostitutes.
  • Dr. Phibes Rises Again: Doctor Phibes is trying to bring his dead wife back to life.
  • In The Brain That Wouldn't Die, Dr. Bill Cortner is already experimenting in preserving and resurrecting dead tissue, when a very practical application presents itself. His girlfriend Jan is decapitated in a car wreck, so Bill uses his experimental serum to bring her head back to life. He then jumps off the slippery slope and spends the rest of the film looking for a gorgeous woman he can kill and attach Jan's head to. Jan herself is not happy with this development.
  • In Pumpkinhead II: Blood Wings, in the backstory a disabled teenage boy is murdered by a group of greasers. His distraught mother then researches witchcraft for the next several years (she's completely unrelated to the woods witch from the first film, btw) to bring him back from the dead, but decided against it when she found out that his restless spirit would be reincarnated as an unstoppable demonic monster, making her a subversion. But rather than destroying any of her work, she just leaves the spellbook lying around in her cabin so a bunch of drunk assholes (our main characters, folks) can steal them and revive Pumpkinhead anyway.
  • In Justice League, Batman, driven by emergency in the face of Steppenwolf's forces, leads the League in a plan to resurrect Superman, using the Kryptonian Genesis Chamber from Zod's crashed ship, a Mother Box, and a perfectly-timed bolt from Flash's Speed Force. It works, though Supes fights the lot of them in blind rage and confusion before Lois Lane comes along to deliver a Cooldown Hug.
  • Lord of Illusions: The surviving members of Nix's cult are seeking to bring their dead master back from the dead. When they finally do so, he rewards them with death.

  • Pet Sematary: Louis suffers Sanity Slippage in his quest to revive his son Gage using the Indian Burial Ground that his neighbor told him about which is known to revive the dead as horrible caricatures of their former selves after being buried there. It worked.
  • In Lisa Goldstein's Dark Cities Underground, Sarah Kendall promises to help The Shadow Committee in exchange for them bringing her dead husband back to life.
  • Harry Potter:
    • In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, two of Voldemort's old followers put together a plan to revive the Dark Lord fully, albeit for different motives. One of them (Wormtail) was a turncoat who had been hiding for years and simply ran out of options after being discovered by the people he had betrayed, while the other (Barty Crouch Jr.) was a true believer in Voldemort's cause.
    • The backstory of the Resurrection Stone, the second of the titular deathly hallows in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, is of an arrogant wizard who sought to humiliate Death by bringing the dead back to life. When Death gives him a stone that can do just that, he uses it to resurrect his dead fiancee. It doesn't end well, and the stone is passed from family to family until it finds itself in Harry's hands.
  • In the Star Wars Expanded Universe, Anakin Solo is killed, and his Love Interest Tahiri Veila becomes obsessed with bringing him back. Following the Face–Heel Turn of Anakin's older brother, Jacen Solo, he is able to manipulate her into becoming his Sith Apprentice with the false promise that he can bring her back.
  • In The Monkey's Paw Mrs. White forces her husband to use the second of three wishes to bring their son Herbert (whose horrific death made their first wish - for money - come true) back to life.
  • Backstory from The Heroes of Olympus reveals that since Thanatos was kidnapped, the boundaries between life and death were blurred. Nico attempts to take advantage of this and sneak his sister Bianca (whose death was a major Cynicism Catalyst) out of the Underworld. He finds out that she chose to be reincarnated without telling him, much to his chagrin, and he brings his half-sister Hazel Back from the Dead instead.
  • The Scum Villain's Self-Saving System: Ren Zha Fanpai Zijiu Xitong: After Shen Qingqiu sacrifices himself to keep him from being overtaken by Xin Mo, Luo Binghe spends the next five years trying to bring him back, carefully preserving his body with his own spiritual energy and refusing to return it to the his sect. Five years later, Shen Qingqiu ends up coming back on his own.

    Live Action TV 
  • In The Twilight Zone (1959) episode "Mr. Garrity and the Graves", the title character offers to resurrect all the people buried in an Old West town's Boot Hill. But the townsfolk don't want them back for various reasons and are willing to pay Garrity to NOT resurrect them. Garrity is a con artist who used trickery to convince the townsfolk he could resurrect people. Double spoiler- it turns out he really can.
  • Supernatural:
    • Zig-Zagged. Most times Sam and/or Dean die note  the other will move heaven & earth to try to save him; but at least a couple of times this doesn't happen: at the end of season 5 Sam dies and makes Dean promise not to come looking for him; at the end of season 7 Dean dies and Sam doesn't try to get him back; this makes Dean pissed in season 8 when he does come back and discovers that Sam didn't try to resurrect him.
    • A straighter example would be Samuel Campbell in season 6 wishing to bring his daughter (And also the Winchester's mother) Mary back to life.
  • In the backstory of Once Upon a Time, Regina wanted to resurrect her dead love, Daniel. After learning that it's impossible for magic to bring someone back from the dead, she has Jefferson (aka the Mad Hatter) hire a strange doctor from another Land who claims that science has the ability to do exactly that.
    • Frankenstein himself also counts, as the entire reason he's pursuing his iconic field of research in the first place to resurrect his dead mother, and later, his dead brother. He eventually succeeds in the latter... technically.
  • The Magicians (2016): In season 2, during the battle with the Beast, Quentin's girlfriend Alice goes full niffin to kill the Beast—meaning that she uses so much magic that it burns her out, leaving nothing but the power and a violent sense of humor behind. After Alice kills the Beast, she is about to kill everyone else, so Quentin unleashes his cacodaemon to kill her. After Quentin recovers from the battle, he finds the White Lady, one of the Questing Creatures of Fillory, and tries to get her to resurrect Alice, but is informed this is impossible. He eventually finds out that Alice is still alive in her niffin form; the cacodaemon couldn't kill her, so it bound her into the magical tattoo on Quentin's back. Quentin then becomes obsessed with trying to reverse Alice's niffin transformation. Many have tried to cure niffins over the centuries (Alice herself being one of them), but no one has ever succeeded. Quentin only begins making real progress when he discovers that the transformation stripped Alice of her shade, the part of her soul that feels pain and guilt, and brings it back from the Underworld - or more specifically, brings back Julia's shade when Julia has an epiphamy in the underworld and learns how to stay sane without it, and then trades Julia's shade for Alice's, which cures Alice. Unfortunately, this has the mild but untreated side effect of bringing her shortcomings and grudges to the front of her mind, not to mention all the monsters out for blood when her niffin had fun murdering their families, causing Alice to undergo a subtle Sanity Slippage, until she's willing to destroy magic just to get away from it all.
  • The Outer Limits (1995): In "Final Appeal", Chief Justice Haden Wainwright was inconsolable after his beloved wife Julia died of cancer in 2066. A friend told him about the scientific underground, which possessed advanced pieces of technology in contravention of the anti-technology codes introduced after the War of 2059. They were able to use the Scanning Molecular Reorganizer (SMR) module developed by Doctors James Houghton and Charles McCamber (as seen in "New Lease") to revive Julia for several seconds. She was terrified and bewildered during her few brief moments of consciousness. The expression on her face further traumatized Chief Justice Wainwright, who said that he would never forgive himself for putting her through that.
  • Bandon spends most of Season 2 of The Shannara Chronicles trying to resurrect the Warlock Lord, partly as revenge against the entire magic-hating Four Lands but also so that the Warlock Lord, in turn, can resurrect Bandon's dead Love Interest Catania. He succeeds on both counts, but of course Evil Is Not a Toy and the Warlock Lord brings back a brainwashed parody of the real Catania to prove a point to Bandon, and Bandon ends up having to kill her all over again.

    Mythology and Religion 
  • Mesopotamian Mythology:
    • A part of The Epic of Gilgamesh has Gilgamesh enlisting the gods to bring his friend Enkidu back to life after he ends up trapped in the underworld. Notably, this part contradicts everything else in the story, where Enkidu stays dead and Gilgamesh learns the hard way that We All Die Someday. (Scholars have theorized that it was an entirely different story that got attached to Epic at a later date.)
    • In Inanna's Descent to the Netherworld, Ninshubur and Enki attempt to bring back Inanna from the clutches of Ereshkigal, ruler of the underworld. Later, when Inanna condemns her husband Dumuzid to the underworld in a fit of rage, she has a Heel Realization and decrees that he will be able to return back to life for half a year, having to return to the underworld for the other half.
  • Classical Mythology: Orpheus for Eurydice, for whom he travels directly into the land of the dead to bargain with Hades.
  • Japanese Mythology: Similar to Orpheus, Izanagi goes into Yomi (the Underworld) to save his dead wife Izanami. In a twist, he found out that Izanami has turned into a hideous-looking fiend-of-a-human and then runs away in horror and disgust, with an angry Izanami proclaiming that she'll kill a thousand men every day as revenge (and him saying that he will, in turn, create 1500 men every day).
  • Egyptian Mythology has the goddess Isis work to reassemble her dead husband Osiris's body parts after he was killed and chopped into pieces in order to resurrect him.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer 40,000: Several groups hope to one day heal the God-Emperor from his current state and return mankind to its former glory.
    • Earlier editions had the Sensei, the immortal, non-genetically modified children that the God-Emperor had sired during his millenia of existence, and which the group known as the Illuminati wants to sacrifice to bring the Emperor back.
    • The Thorians hope to build a suitable host body for the Emperor's spirit, allowing his resurrection via Body Surfing.
    • The Dragon Warriors Chaos Warband are attempting to use the knowledge of shamanistic magic from the prehistory of Nocturne, home of the Salamanders, to resurrect the Traitor Chaplain who led them. This is noteworthy because the vast majority of the Chaos-worshipers of the setting despise the dead and see them as failures. The Dragon Warriors are the only faction in Chaos explicitly working to resurrect a dead character, at least by the 'present day' of the tabletop game. This is further explored in Salamanders novels.
  • Call of Cthulhu supplement The Asylum and Other Tales, adventure "The Auction". The villain Klaus Hunderprest is a Cthulhu Mythos cultist who is desperately trying to find a way to bring his dead wife back to life. He steals the Brazen Head in the hope that it will teach him a way to do this.
  • Dungeons & Dragons players may find themselves having to hunt down a high-level cleric or druid to bring one of their fallen companions back to life.
  • Lord Merick Farrow from Descent: Journeys in the Dark is an Overlord's Lieutenant who was seduced by The Dark Side while searching the necromantic arts for a way to resurrected his brother, Sir Alric, who fell in battle. He did eventually succeed—but only after he was completely turned evil, so Alric Came Back Wrong, too.
  • Fabula Ultima: One of the sample villains from the Fabula Ultima Atlas: High Fantasy sourcebook is a former priestess who turned to the dark arts and became a lich purely to resurrect her sister, who was betrayed and murdered by their former king.

    Video Games 
  • Dr. Palet, in Breath of Fire III, who has been spending years trying to revive his mother with Mad Science. Momo's father apparently collaborated with him on the technology in hopes of using it on his dead wife, but abandoned the pursuit well before his own death.
  • Trials of Mana: Belladonna, The Dragon to one of the three potential Big Bads, is this to her Dark Majesty. If you choose Hawkeye or Riesz as your main character, she succeeds in reviving him, but if you choose one of the other four, his remains are destroyed, and she loses her will to live due to her Mad Love for him.
  • The Big Bad of Tales of Symphonia went bad when, after a long and emotionally-draining ordeal, his sister died. So, as any good Knight Templar Big Brother would do, he split the world in two, seeded a Path of Inspiration on both worlds using his sister as God, and kept her on magic life-support for the next few thousand years while he tried to find just the right body for her soul to possess. The kicker? When he finally brings her back after thousands of years of laboring on her behalf, her first words are a massive What the Hell, Hero?
  • In Final Fantasy IX, the villain Garland was created, and strives solely for, the resurrection of the Terran people.
  • Shadow of the Colossus: Wander sets out to bring Mono back to life.
  • Played for horror in Dragon Age II, where a man is driven mad by the desire to resurrect his wife and starts murdering Kirkwall women to harvest their body parts that look like his late wife's and grafting them together in a sick Blood Magic ritual to frankenstein her back into existence. The worst part of it is that Hawke's own mother is harvested for her face in Act II. It is also worth mentioning that All Deaths Final in the DA universe, so his efforts are futile.
  • In the second half of Chrono Trigger, your entire party, and Marle in particular, for Crono, the main character (the actual means to do this turns out to involve preventing their death via Time Travel). It's possible to beat the game without going through the resurrection, but if you do so, the ending indicates that with Lavos gone, reviving Crono has become the characters' new top priority.
  • The Legend of Zelda
  • Final Fantasy VI: In between fighting The Empire, Locke is seeking the Phoenix in order to resurrect his dead sweetheart, Rachel. While he is able to bring her back, it is only for a few seconds, in which she tells him to move on.
  • Fire Emblem:
    • Fire Emblem: The Blazing Blade: The backstory of Renault (or Renaud, for PAL regions), in the short time you have him, can be pieced together to reveal that he had served Nergal for a time in a desperate bid to bring a dear friend of his back from the dead. However, Nergal reneged on this arrangement by providing him with a soulless Morph from his friend's corpse. After this, Renault turned to the cloth to find forgiveness for what he had done.
      Renault: ...Nergal, do you remember me?
      Nergal: Hah. You are... Renault. So you're still eking out a wretched existence?
      Renault: I went astray. I listened to your honeyed words... I dreamt of the impossible... the return of a lost soul. But... what you gave me was... a puppet. It was soulless... nothing more than an empty vessel!!!
      Nergal: Just an empty vessel... Isn't that what you wanted? You desired to bring back your dead friend. You were my experiment, and I completed my Morph. I'm grateful, Renault. Thanks to you, I gained power.
      Renault: You villain... You cursed him! Your crime can never be forgiven! I will end you with my hands. In the name of my lost friend!
    • Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones: Orson betrays Renais in order to resurrect his wife. She most definitely Came Back Wrong, but Orson is a bit too far around the bend to notice.
    • This was the end-plot for Fire Emblem: Awakening. The entire plot revolved around Validar working to revive the Fell Dragon, Grima, who would bring about the destruction of mankind, and so all of Validar's gambits led up to it. When the heroes foil his final plan, kill him at last, and seemingly prevent the ritual from happening, this simply prompts the Grima from the Bad Future, who followed Lucina and her comrades to keep the future on course, to step in at last and finish the resurrection himself.
    • Fire Emblem: Three Houses: In the Silver Snow and Verdant Wind routes, it's eventually revealed this is Lady Rhea's end goal. She seeks to bring back her mother Sothis back to life, both to finally put her own grieving heart at ease, and to have Sothis assume Fódlan's leadership like she once did in the distant past. For this purpose, she not only had created multiple failed vessels (one of which was Byleth's mother), but is also why she recruits a grown up Byleth later and tests during the Academy Arc of all four routes if they truly are a successful vessel for Sothis to occupy.
  • In Professor Layton and the Unwound Future, this is the mission of the future Professor Layton, who has invested all his time and resources into inventing a time machine to go back in time and save Claire from a fatal explosion. It is actually the mission of Dimitri, who has been masquerading as said future Layton.
  • Tactics Ogre: Nybbas Obderhode a necromancer in the game. Throughout the game, Nybbas has only one goal—to be the best Necromancer in the land. He is willing to sacrifice anything—morals, dignity, and even other people, for the sake of his work. It is revealed that he goes between being a Resurrection Seeker for his wife and son Debordes (which he tried to resurrect as a proper being but botched and brought another soulless undead back, in the ending it shows that Orias manages to recover a part of Debordes soul on her own) and the fact of being an Immortality Seeker by the end of the game. Further expanded when you find him in the Bonus Dungeon which bring the following gem:
    Nybbas: Hmmm. The cells are decaying. It's not complete. "Necro" will only turn the living into the undead... "Revivify" will only bring back life, but the aging process can't be stopped. My son was so close. I was able to regenerate his body cells. But I was unable to retrieve his memory... I am trying to achieve what you would call a soul recovery. It is very difficult. When one condition is met, another thing goes wrong... Sorry, I have failed again. Forgive me. Everlasting life and youth is the one thing that all human beings strive for. ...I guess I'll have to use this.
  • Tactics Ogre: The Knight of Lodis: Elrik is this in his Modus Operandi he tries to resurrect his wife and ends up chaining the soul of his wife to his daughter's body. It takes a talk of his daughter, after being stopped by Alphonse, to put him back on track and therefore becoming the Atoner. If his daughter dies in the course of the game he tries to create artificial life in the form of golems, with the implications it might be as a vessel for his daughter.
  • Oliver in Ni no Kuni is driven to become a hero and a great wizard by the belief that he can bring his dead mother back to life if he can rescue her Alternate Self, the Great Sage Alicia, from imprisonment by the villainous Shaddar.
  • In the backstory of Pokémon X and Y, the former king AZ used the Ultimate Weapon to wipe out all life on Kalos, to end a war and gather enough souls to revive his beloved Floette that died during the conflict. It worked, but she knew exactly why she was alive again, and abandoned him. He was cursed with immortality in the process as well, and spends the next 3,000 years trying to atone for it.
  • Banjo and Kazooie in Banjo-Tooie, for Bottles, who was their mentor in the first Banjo-Kazooie game.
  • Rue for Claire, his rescuer and "sister," in Threads of Fate.
  • This is the motivation of Yuyuko Saigyouji, the Big Bad of Touhou Youyoumu ~ Perfect Cherry Blossom. She ordered her underling Youmu to steal essence of spring from Gensokyo, causing an Endless Winter, so that she can undo the seal of a youkai cherry tree, and reviving the person buried underneath, all because she was bored and curious. After the protagonist beats her, she gave up on it, which is good since the person buried is herself, a fact that she forgot, and reviving her body would make her disappear instead.
  • In the backstory of Neverwinter Nights 2: Mask of the Betrayer, Myrkul, The Grim Reaper at the time, decided to test the faith of his most loyal disciple Akachi by arranging the death of his lover, a Faithless Red Wizard. In the Forgotten Realms dying as an atheist means you end up in Myrkul's Wall of the Faithless to be consumed over thousands of years, so Akachi waged war on the heavens to retrieve his lover. He failed and was placed in the wall himself, turning him into the Spirit-eater curse which is placed on the Player Character in the present day.
  • Similar to the Dragon Age example, the Windhelm Butcher in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is the museum curator, Calixto Corrium, seeking to revive his dead sister. Unlike the Dragon Age example, it's a bit less clear how well this would have worked, though the results would almost certainly not have been pretty.
  • Deconstructed in Disgaea 5. Void (Dark) was Goldion's son and original heir to the Ultimate Demon Technique, but whatever life he had started going downhill when Goldion brought Killidia in as another heir. The latter got the focus from both Goldion and his daughter, Liezerota, which made Void believe he was left in the dust. When Killidia (now Killia) set out, Lieze followed him, only for Void to happen upon the former and try to kill him, only to kill Lieze when she tried to interject and intermediate. The entire reason Void took in Majorita, founded the Lost, brainwashed Goldion, and started a bloodbath across the universe was just to gather everything he needed to undo this one mistake. Cementing the deconstruction, Void actually succeeds, but when his inner malice merges with Lieze, she gets a full view of everything he does, and how does she express her 'gratitude'? By begging Killia for death. Thankfully, Lieze survives, as does Void, but the latter is denied a suicide wish and conscripted into the very group that was originally formed with the purpose of killing him.
  • In Path of Exile Clarissa sends the player to retrieve the Ankh of Resurrection to bring her lover Tolman back to life properly - due to the curse of Wraeclast he's already a zombie. She gives up after the Ankh just transforms him into a more powerful zombie the player has to put down.
  • Shadow Hearts series features the Émigré Manuscript, an ancient document created by the Formors of Irish Mythology that contains instructions to bring the dead back to the living world. The tome was sought after by several character through the entire trilogy and invariably used to bring back their loved one. Save for one case, all the attempts failed because the instructions were never meant to resurrect the dead the way they were because the Formors could never unravel the secret of the soul and thus they employed it to raise the dead and use them as mindless slave labor.
    • Koudelka: Patrick Heyworth acquired the document and planned to use it to revive his wife Elaine who died during a robbery while he was traveling abroad using the sacrifice of animals and people as the catalyst. It failed because Patrick couldn't call Elaine's soul back into her body and thus ended up creating a soulless, twisted demon instead.
    • Shadow Hearts: Jack tried to revive his mother who died supposedly from a curse using the sacrifice of orphans as the catalyst. It failed and the subsequent abomination that Yuri and co. fought possessed more than a passing resemblance to Elaine's monstrous insect form from Koudelka
    • Shadow Hearts: Covenant: Yuri attempted to bring his lover Alice back after she died at the end of the first game. It failed this time because the catalyst used to created the vessel crumbled before it could finish the process. Alice's soul was brought back but without a body to host her spirit, the resurrection ritual was cut short.
    • Shadow Hearts: From The New World: Graham Garland utilized the manuscript to resurrect his children Grace and Johnny after they died in a car accident. For the first time in the franchise it actually worked solely due to the fact that Grace's sacrificed her opportunity once she saw that johnny wouldn't make it. In the aftermath, Johnny became ritual's only success but at the price of her sister becoming hollow shell of evil intent and his father dying in the process.
  • In Shadowverse, Isabelle's story is focused around finding a way to resurrect her lover and the despair she suffers from losing him. Her development revolves around her having to move on from his death, which included a bit of intervention from his spirit.
  • In League of Legends, this is the primary motivation of Viego, the Ruined King, trying to resurrect his fallen queen. His instability following her death led him to search down the hidden Blessed Isles to exploit their supposed secrets of eternal life, but the attempted resurrection ritual was so botched that he produced a terrifying curse that transformed the lands into the Shadow Isles, a festering home of undeath and eternal suffering. From there, he leads his new legion of damned souls in an effort to reclaim and reconstruct his queen's soul so they can be together again, and he's willing to tear apart Runeterra to do so.
  • Persona 3:
    • In The Answer, after Metis reveals that the party could use their keys to go back in time before the events that lead to the death of the protagonist of The Journey. Yukari, being the most attached to him, wants to use the power to go back with Mitsuru supporting her, but the rest of the party disagrees, causing a brief civil war.
    • Persona 4 and Persona 4: Arena show that Elizabeth, the aforementioned P3 protagonist's Velvet Room attendant, is undertaking a journey of her own to free her charge from his status as the Great Seal and hopefully bring him back to life.
  • Rengoku: ADAMs normally have no personality or distinctive characteristics, so when the deceased Captain Gram's memories were discovered in ADAM prototypes, Beatrice tried everything to restore him the way he was.
  • In Tak and the Power of Juju, when Lok, the supposed prophecied warrior that would save the Pupununu People ends up getting Squashed Flat, Tak is required to go on a quest necessary to revive him, which includes going into the Spirit World to recover Lok's soul. Unfortunatley, upon being revived, Lok is incapacitated by Resurrection's Revenge which leaves him stuck in the outhouse for hours, requiring Tak to continue carrying on his duties.

  • The Order of the Stick has a several-arc-long quest to resurrect the party leader, Roy Greenhilt, who was killed during Xykon's attack on Azure City. Easy in theory; hard when the party is split in half and occupied with La Résistance and a refugee fleet respectively.
  • Port Sherry: Implied Trope in "Out of your hands", where a genie freed by a human offers said human one wish. Though we can't read the human's speech, the genie's replies imply that they cannot bring someone back to life.
    Genie: If you want, I can make it stop hurting. I can make you forget.
    Genie: Nothing?
    Genie: I am sorry for your loss.
  • One character (the Serqeti trade emirate) from Quentyn Quinn, Space Ranger is driven by a desire to resurrect his dead wife from a bodyscan and brain readout created during the RIAA Wars, even though doing so would involve committing a neurocrime equal to first-degree murder. He fails, ending up with a version each for the body and brain images, neither of whom is quite the same person and both of whom hate him for what he tried to do.
  • Girl Genius: Many Sparks first break through when they try to bring a loved one back from the dead. Of course, since they're all Mad Scientists, halfway through the process they tend to decide to add "improvements" such as claws, inhuman strength, and a complete lack of remorse. Such young Sparks are generally found in multiple pieces strewn around their lab.

    Web Original 
  • In Part 3 of the Flash miniseries, Mario Brothers, Mario attempts to revive Luigi, who had been killed at the end of Part 1, by feeding him a 1-Up Mushroom. It doesn't work.

    Western Animation 
  • Molly of Ōban Star-Racers seeks to use the Ultimate Prize of the Great Race of Oban to bring her mother back to life and thus reunite her family. Another competitor, Muir, is on the same quest.
  • Gargoyles: In the episode "Grief", a man known as "The Emir" summons Anubis and demands he resurrect his deceased son who tragically died in a car accident. Anubis refused to fulfill his request stating that it would be "unfair for the Jackal God to play favorites". At the end of the episode, this is subverted when the Emir comes to accept that death is a natural part of life.
  • In Ben 10: Ultimate Alien, Charmcaster attempts to resurrect her father through a Deal with the Devil in the episode "Enemy of my Frenemy". She succeeds, but her father then cancels the deal since her method involved killing 600,000 people (who are then immediately revived).
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012): In the fifth season, Tiger Claw, now in charge of the Foot Clan, is trying to find a way to resurrect the Shredder, who was killed by Leonardo in the fourth season finale. This leads him to summon the demodragon Kavaxas from the Netherworld.
  • Miraculous Ladybug:
    • In the episode "The Pharaoh", the titular villain seeks to complete a ritual to resurrect his wife (even though he's not the original pharaoh, but a Brainwashed and Crazy Jalil Kubdel).
    • The show's Big Bad, Hawk Moth, is a downplayed version of this; his wife is not yet dead, but her reckless use of the Peacock Miraculous left her in a coma that she only falls deeper into with time, and Gabriel wants the Ladybug and Cat Miraculouses to reverse her condition.
  • Ninjago:
    • This is Pythor's plan in season 1, hoping to revive a mythic snake called the Great Devourer. It's firmly a type two, as Pythor plans to use the Devourer to conquer Ninjago.
    • Downplayed in season 6, but part of Nadakhan's motivation is to revive his long-dead love, Dilara, via having her possess Nya.
    • This is the motivation of the Quiet One, the leader of the Sons of Garmadon biker gang in season 8. The Quiet One's parents were killed in the Great Devourer's rampage, and because Garmadon is the one who killed the Great Devourer, they came to view Garmadon as a surrogate father figure, despite never having met him before his Heroic Sacrifice. While it has shades of the second type (wanting to use Garmadon's power to rule Ninjago and conquer the ninja who weren't able to stop the Devourer), ultimately the Quiet One just wants to supplant Lloyd as Garmadon's child.
  • Castlevania (2017): Seasons 3 and 4 both feature plots by followers of Dracula (both human and vampire) to resurrect him after his death at the hands of the heroes at the end of Season 2.

    Real Life 
  • Saul Kent, for his mother Dora Kent. After cryonically suspending Dora, the coroner later demanded the head back to be autopsied, which would have completely destroyed any hope of recovering Dora Kent's brain-state. Saul Kent hid his mother's frozen head from the police, fought a legal battle and eventually won a $90,000 judgment against the county. Dora Kent is currently suspended in liquid nitrogen at Alcor. Saul Kent went on to start the Life Extension Foundation, which has made millions of dollars selling nutritional supplements, most of it reinvested in cryonics research.
  • In 1955, when Ronald Mallett was 10, his father died of a heart attack. Mallett resolved to travel back in time to save his father, grew up, became a physicist, and wrote a number of reputable papers about time travel methods based on General Relativity. Critiques seem to indicate that these systems would be physically hopeless of implementation, but at least he tried.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Resurrection Seeker


Miraculous Ladybug

Pharaoh's plan is to sacrifice Alya to bring back his wife to life.

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Main / SeeksAnothersResurrection

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