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Song of Courage

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The night is long
And the path is dark
Look to the sky
For one day soon
The dawn will come.

—Choral reprise for "The Dawn Will Come", Dragon Age: Inquisition

Whenever the hero or his allies are under great odds, even seeming doomed to be destroyed by a single foe, army, or unstoppable force of nature, there's the chance that one of the main characters will give a speech or word that'll conjure the power of either an unseen choir, instrumental band or actually a character in the scene that'll rally their spirits to face their death and carry on with dignity and valor.


The heroes don't necessarily have to succeed- strictly speaking they don't even have to live past the endeavor, but the Song of Courage at least makes them look cool as they fall. The Song isn't about not going gentle into that good night — it's about triumph against the fear of death, and the people singing it may simply be awaiting their imminent deaths, knowing that trying to fight it won't help.

The Song of Courage can either be heard by the characters, or it could just be ambience for the sake of the audience.

Sister trope of The Song Before the Storm.



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    Anime & Manga 

    Comic Books 
  • The Pied Piper plays one (crossed with The Power of Rock) in the "Countdown" arc, using Queen's "The Show Must Go On," a song that probably qualifies for the trope all by itself given the fact that Freddie Mercury was dying of AIDS-related complications at the time it was recorded.


  • Owing to their vaguely Scottish roots, Gaunt's Ghosts would often march to battle to the sound of space-bagpipes. Indeed, before he was commissioned, this was Brin Milo's official job, and even afterwards he remained the best. It's noted that the enemy, and sometimes other Imperial Guard regiments, tended to view it as a Drone of Dread instead.
  • The Lord of the Rings: Samwise, alone in an enemy fortress, having come to a dead end while trying to find and rescue Frodo, starts to sing without even knowing why. Simple rhymes and children's songs quickly give way to this:
    Though here at journey's end I lie in darkness buried deep,
    beyond all towers strong and high, beyond all mountains steep,
    above all shadows rides the Sun and Stars for ever dwell:
    I will not say the Day is done, nor bid the Stars farewell.
  • In The Outlaws, an entire tenement house full of Communist workers sings 'The International' during a search conducted by government soldiers.

    Live Action TV 
  • "Walk Through the Fire" from Buffy the Vampire Slayer's Musical Episode, "Once More, With Feeling".
  • "Yo Way Oh" from Lexx, also known as "The Fight Song of the Brunnen-G". The lyrics are in in the (fictional) language of the (fictional) Brunnen-G, but a translation exists and it basically amounts to a call to battle, a declaration of what is worth fighting for (one's home and heart), and a vow to win or die but always as a Warrior Poet. Traditionally sung before (or during) a hopeless battle or Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Game of Thrones. Sansa leads the women of the Red Keep in a song during the Battle of Blackwater when Stannis Baratheon's army is battering down the city gates and the Queen Regent walks out on them.


    Tabletop Games 
  • The Bard class in Dungeons & Dragons and other games, often singing songs that make his allies litterally immune to fear.

    Video Games 

    Western Animation 
  • In The Simpsons episode "Bart's Comet", Ned Flanders faces his apparent death at the comet by singing "Que Sera Sera", which unsettles the Springfield residents who kicked him out of his own shelter. When they all decide to leave and face the comet together, they join Flanders in the song creating an impressive chorus.
  • Played with in Batman: The Brave and the Bold with AQUAMAN'S Rousing Song of Heroism.
    AQUAMAN: (to Captain Atom) You don't look roused.


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