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Send Me Back

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Roddy: Sid, I want you to flush me. I'm going back.
Sid: Back?!
Roddy: Rita's in terrible danger - everyone is in terrible danger!

So the hero has spent some time trapped in another world (or another time, another universe, or even just another country). Initially, they just wanted to get home, but soon enough, they found themselves wrapped up in the other world's affairs. Then, all at once, they're returned home against their will. But there's a problem. The villain lives. The hero's friends in the other world are still fighting for their lives. That other world still needs saving. Nothing has been resolved. If their "other world" was another time (specifically the past), the hero may even find out that their friends all died and that the villain won. However, their original world doesn't appear to be in any danger (at least initially). The hero could stay there and live a normal life, forgetting about what happened in the other world altogether. What is their reaction to this? "Send me back!"

Most of the time, the hero will eventually find a way back to the other world to resolve things, but there are occasional subversions to this.

Compare I Choose to Stay, Can't Stay Normal and So What Do We Do Now?. Occasionally overlaps with Save Both Worlds.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Digimon Adventure, Taichi, having just defeated the villain of the arc, manages to return to his home world. Unfortunately, all his friends are still trapped in the Digital World. After receiving a garbled message indicating that they may be in trouble, Taichi finds a way to return to the Digital World in order to rescue them.
  • In Dual! Parallel Trouble Adventure, Kazuki is at one point blasted back to his world mid-battle. Upon realizing what happened, he asks the scientist who sent him there in the first place, Ken Sanada, to send him back.
  • Inuyasha:
    • Averted in the beginning. When Kagome first returns to her own time, she briefly considers attempting to go back to feudal Japan to help search for the shards of the Shikon no Tama. In the end, however, she decides to just pretend it was all a dream and ignore it. And then Inu-Yasha shows up and drags her back to the past anyway.
    • Played straight in one of the movies. Inu-Yasha throws Kagome down the well to return her to the present, then blocks the well with a boulder so that she can't get back. She immediately tries to get back, but since the well is blocked in the past, it doesn't work. Once things get so bad in the past that they start to affect the present, Kagome destroys the boulder with a magic arrow, enabling her to travel back and forth once again.
  • The first season of Magic Knight Rayearth. The heroines have saved magical land Cephiro from the machinations of Zagato, and defeated Princess Emeraude, who had brought them in to kill her so that she could be free and happy with Zagato rather than focusing all her attention on maintaining the peace of the realm. They then are released back to Tokyo, but soon realise that Cephiro is now leaderless and in turmoil, so will themselves to return.
  • A very brief example occurs in Negima! Magister Negi Magi when Zazi sends Negi's group back to the Old World (Earth) after they had been trapped in the Magical World for a few months under the condition that they stop interfering with Fate's plan and let the villains go about as they please. The whole group demands that they be returned to the Magical World so that they can set things right. The worst part: because of Chao, they know that one possible future doesn't turn out very well, and Zazi seems convinced that their actions are going to lead to the future she came from. Although part of the reason they were so quick to demand being returned is because they suspect the trip to be an illusion of some sort.
  • In The Rising of the Shield Hero Naofumi is banished back to his Earth when the goddess Medea manifests. Even though he has his family back and a girlfriend, he wants to return and help in the final battle and the Shield obliges. Along the way he picks up the similarly banished Ren who jumps at the opportunity.

    Fan Works 

    Film Animated 
  • In Flushed Away, after Roddy finally returns to his home, upon realizing that the Toad plans to destroy the city of rodents in the sewer, he decides to go back to both save the city, and to stay.

    Film Live-Action 

  • Near the end of Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere, the hero gets back "home", to upper London. He chooses to return to the adventure.
  • The children in Pamela Dean's The Secret Country write a letter of confession and attempt to return to the everyday world, hoping to prevent tragedy. Ted and Laura go through a brief and extremely painful So What Do We Do Now? before being shown that they not only can go back to the Secret Country, they must go back.
  • Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson, Holger Carlsen is suddenly switched out from the climactic battle against evil back to our Earth, where he appears in the middle of a firefight with Nazis. It's suggested that the battles are connected, and that good triumphed back in the alternate reality, but Holger would like to know for sure.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Agent Simmons of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is pulled into an alien monolith at the end of Season 2. The first episode of Season 3 reveals that it stranded her on an alien world, where she has been trapped for months. She is rescued a few episodes later, only to eventually state that she needs to find a way back to find and rescue the astronaut, stranded there for years, who had helped her survive. Plus they had fallen in love.
  • Doctor Who: In "The Parting of the Ways", Rose is trapped in the TARDIS by the Doctor and sent back to the twenty-first century, because "Emergency Program 1 means [The Doctor is] facing an enemy that should never be allowed to get their hands on [the TARDIS]." However, Rose won't take that for a good reason. She knows that the Doctor is going to die if he fights the Daleks by himself, so she gets Jackie and Micky to help her crack the TARDIS so she can get back to the 2001st century and it works.
  • Life On Mars ends this way. In the middle of a massive police sting, Sam finally wakes up from his coma - but he finds life in 2006 so numbing that he ends up throwing himself off the top of the police HQ just to he can get back to 1973 and save his friends.
  • Star Trek: Discovery: Near the end of "The Battle at the Binary Suns", Burnham is beamed back aboard Shenzhou against her will when she was trying to reach Captain Georgiou, who had just been killed. Although she doesn't ask to go back (it's clear Saru, who beamed her off to begin with, won't send her back), the normally Stoic officer collapses on the transporter in a fit of Inelegant Blubbering over being unable to save her captain.

    Video Games 
  • Star Ocean: The Second Story: Claude accidentally lands on "undeveloped planet" Expel and is stranded there. Though he sends out a distress signal, he later forgets about it... until his father's ship stumbles across it and tracks him down, teleporting him away from his friends inside the Disc-One Final Dungeon. Naturally, Claude doesn't take it well.

    Visual Novels 
  • Right at the end of Higurashi: When They Cry Kai, after escaping Hinamizawa to report the betrayal of Takano (the telephone lines had been cut within the village and there weren't cell phones back when the story takes place, so they had to actually leave the village to report this), Tomitake and Akasaka decide to return to Hinamizawa to continue fighting despite the deployment of Banken (an elite combat force that will hopefully save the day) and the danger to themselves.

    Web Animation 
  • At the end of Red vs. Blue S9, Epsilon-Church says this after being pulled out of the Epsilon unit. He had figured out the secret that let him escape the cycle, but then was dragged into the fight again. This is also a terribly sad moment: Church is terribly abused by Tex, especially in her flailing failure to accomplish anything, and only achieves inner peace when he gets rid of her, by forgetting her.

    Western Animation 
  • Dungeons & Dragons (1983): The Young Ones have found portals back to their home realm, but have had to give up their chance at escape because it would involve leaving one or more of them behind, letting Venger get away with his scheme of the day, and sometimes both. The unaired finale left it open, ending with giving them the choice of going home or continue to adventure in The Realm.
  • In Teen Titans, Cyborg at one point becomes trapped in the distant past. While in the past, he befriends the people of a barbarian tribe, who have been fighting off invading monsters. Then, during the final battle to defend the tribe and destroy the monsters once and for all, the other Titans manage to use magic to forcibly retrieve him from the past. His words as he arrives? "Send me back!" Unusual in that Cyborg does not actually return to the past, as (a) he has no way to get there, and (b) he finds out from a history book that the tribes won without him anyway.