The Power Of Love is a curious thing. It makes one man weep, and another man sing. It can change a hawk to a little white dove. Bring inanimate objects to life. It might just save your life. It makes people want to give up personal freedom to belong to each other. Don't you dare mock it, it's more than a feeling, that's the Power of Love.
Even more than The Power of Friendship and The Power of Family, the Power of Love can be applied in dire situations to make things better. In fact, in many Disney movies it's the solution to everything. Unlike The Power of Friendship it can be applied in Fan Fic to make things profoundly disturbing. It's also an occasionally useful Deus ex Machina.
Common applications of the Power of Love include activating an Empathic Weapon, freeing a loved one from mind control, strengthening a loved one, and converting a Real Death into a Disney Death. Even when the power of love is not literally and directly responsible, the scene is often set such that the audience is left with the impression that it was "really responsible". Although, Love is more powerful then magic as it usually helps break spells.
The Green-Eyed Monster may come into play. In more idealistic shows, it is a sign of an immature love, where trust and faith is insufficient. However, more cynical shows may treat it as normal, and even let it overcome Cannot Spit It Out.
In cynical times, this can feel like a rip-off. It depends on where you, and the scene in question, fall on the Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism.
A Super-Trope to Heart Beat-Down, True Love's Kiss, The Love Slap of Epiphany. A Sister Trope to Light 'em Up (light based powers) and Holy Hand Grenade (holy powers) which are generally good. Compare Care-Bear Stare which includes all positive feelings (happiness, peace, love etc).
- The finale of Abnett & Lanning's run on The Authority depends on this. To go with the Class 2 Apocalypse, there's a horrific and intelligent virus floating around that ends up infecting Apollo, prompting Midnighter to look desperately for a cure. He's called north, eventually finding an island, which turns out to be a giant, Swamp Thing-like Century Baby named Gaia. In return for his help, she gives him an apple, and tells him to remember Avalon, the isle of apples: "The fruit of immortality... of love..." Two pages later, Apollo's fine.
- In the OGN Avengers: Rage of Ultron Starfox uses his psionic ability to make people experience love to defeat Ultron (who had been merged with his creator Hank Pym), resulting in Ultron realizing what he had become and fleeing.
Starfox: There is a solution. It's so simple. Love yourself.
- In one Buffy the Vampire Slayer comic, a spell that keeps Buffy asleep can only be broken by the kiss of someone who is in love with her. One of her Slayers, Satsu, does it.
- Dark Avengers: it's heavily implied that The Power Of Love is all that's keeping The Sentry from unleashing the Void and raining Biblical plagues down on humanity. Unfortunately his wife, Lindy, is terrified of him, and when she tries to kill him in the hope of preventing a mad rampage, that's exactly what she gets. Norman Osborn recognizes that Lindy could set the Sentry off again at any time; unfortunately his solution is to kill her and make it look like a suicide. Initially that seems to work, but the next time we see the Sentry he ramps up to a Suicidal Cosmic Temper Tantrum very quickly and eventually provokes Thor into killing him. The last we see of the Sentry and Lindy is two empty graves, side by side...
- Elfquest has this as a recurring theme. It shows itself through all dealings with Bug Bad Winnowill, who tries to avoid this at all costs, and stated almost verbatim by all-loving High One Timmain, who almost states that this central trope keeps the Palace in balance.
- Referenced in a classic Stan Lee / Jack Kirby Fantastic Four story line, when Reed Richards, alerted by the Watcher, takes on the Silver Surfer. When Sue Richards asks the Watcher how Reed can take on the "all-powerful Silver Surfer", the Watcher answers, "All-powerful? There is only one who deserves that name. And his only weapon — is love!"
- The Power Of Love allows The Flash to come back from an other-dimensional speedster heaven that no one had ever returned from. Several times.
- It lets Barry Allen break the Anti-Life Equation's hold over Iris Allen in Final Crisis.
- Flash-type speedsters rely on this trope to keep them from being absorbed by the Speed Force (the aforementioned speedster heaven). It doesn't necessarily need to be romantic — the paternal bond between Max Mercury and Bart Allen is a beautiful example of such — but yes, the three main Flashes rely on their wives for it. Another case of paternal bond getting used is in DC Rebirth. Wally thought he is permanently trapped in the Speed Force when his "lightning rod", Linda Park, doesn't even remember him; it was Barry Allen, Wally's father figure/mentor, that allowed him to escape.
- Veteran Green Lantern enemy Star Sapphire and the Star Sapphire Corps that succeed her are fueled by love. If uncontrolled (as can happen when all the power is consolidated into a single person), it is of the insane, possessive, destructive sort, which is why the entity that provides their power is called The Predator, but they run on all kinds of love (be it between a man and woman or a mother and her child or so on and so forth) and the Predator is actually the one that is corrupted by its hosts, not the other way around.
For hearts long lost and full of fright,For those alone in Blackest NightAccept our ring and join our fight.Love conquers all-with violet light.
- One Star Sapphire uses Soranik Natu's love for Kyle Rayner and channeled it to bring him back to life.
- The Star Sapphire's Badass Creed:
- Subverted in Harbinger. After Torque develops feelings for Faith he becomes weaker because his power comes from his own insecurity.
- For a split second, it looks as if this trope is going to be averted in the Justice Society of America arc "Princes of Darkness" — Jade's the Power of Love speech to Obsidian fails to halt his evil rampage — but it's really only a set up for their father, the Golden Age Green Lantern, to come in and deliver it successfully.
- Ultra Boy is saved from The Blight by The Power Of Love in the Legion of Super-Heroes issues right before Legion Lost.
- From Ninja High School Jeremy uses this to bring back his friend, Cute Witch turned dark, Mimi. (The story's also a bit of a homage to Dark Phoenix so take that as you will).
- Speaking of Osborn, The Power Of Love (for his son Harry) once turned Norman sane after he relapsed as the Green Goblin. Both the sanity and the love failed to stick.
- Alan Moore's Providence has Dr. Alvarez, of all people, citing Love as the force that defines life.
Dr. Alvarez: Love is the only substantial thing. It is noble in its noises and odours, I think. From where I look at this, to not love is to waste the existence. Even life is a small matter beside it. You see, it is not interrupted by death. Without it, this world cannot be endured.
- Scott Pilgrim:
- In Volume 4, the "Power of Love" manifests In the form of a flaming sword... but the trope is Subverted because loving Romona isn't enough to surmount the last Evil Ex-Boyfriend. That requires the far more important Power of Understanding, which allows Scott to see how similar he is to Gideon, and how that is a very bad thing.
- In Volume 1, this protects Wallace, Jimmy, and those in the immediate vicinity from the effects of "Last Song Kills Audience", although they weren't in as much danger as the name implies.
- In Superman Reborn Lois and Clark's love (for the partner and for their son Jon) is so strong thatit has repaired what was broken. More specifically, the pre-Flashpoint and New-52 versions of Clark and Lois are merged back together.
- Wonder Woman Vol 1: The power of love allows Steve Trevor to cheat death, three times. At least one of those times he was aided by Aphrodite herself.
- X-23: Despite everything the Facility did to break her and forge her into an emotionless killing machine, it was Sarah Kinney's love for her as a daughter, defying orders to not treat her as a child whenever she could by reading to her and offering an emotional connection that saved her humanity and helped her break free of the Facility's control.
- Defied in X-Campus. Magnus claims he will show them the greatest power of the world. "Love?" asks Storm. "Magnetism".
- Played absolutely straight in Young Avengers, where Billy is unable to fully access his Demiurge powers. His fiancé, Teddy, who had previously left to try to figure out whether he actually loves Billy after Loki insinuated that Teddy may have been accidentally wished into existence in the first place by Billy's powers, returns and decides that it doesn't matter to him whether or not he's alive because Billy subconsciously wanted someone like him to be. After True Love's Kiss, Billy immediately and effortlessly becomes the Demiurge and nonchalantly rearranges the universe the same way most people organize things in the fridge. It's lampshaded in-story.
Loki: Oh, ugh. Is love really going to save us all?
America: Of course it is. Anyone who thinks otherwise gets stomped into paste.
- In Zombies Christmas Carol Fan and Fred both embody this, and Scrooge's love following his reformation is so strong he heals all of the zombies.
- The New Zealand comic Footrot Flats features a scene where the main character, the Dog, finds himself able to walk on water due to his love for Jess, the neighbour's dog note . After this initial success, he demonstrates that there is no such thing as The Power Of Lust, by sinking as soon as he moves from "Love can work miracles!" to "I'm coming baby!"
- The Pokemon fanfic A Pikachu in Love both plays this straight and subverts it. Though it gave Pichi the courage to save Pikachu from nearly being mauled to death by an Ursaring, in the end it wasn't strong enough for Pikachu to choose to stay with her over Ash.
- It is because of this in Gankona, Unnachgiebig, Unità that Germany and Japan see the error in their ways and decide to share Italy. However, they also fall for each other, completing the polyamorous relationship.
- Child of the Storm has this as a central underlying theme, with The Four Loves being discussed In-Universe, and Doctor Strange's grand scheme resting on this and The Power of Friendship (which, as one of the four loves, it more or less conflates). It even successfully defuses the Dark Phoenix, which is driven by The Power of Hate - though as is also noted, that Dark Phoenix wasn't quite fully-fledged. Harry is particularly adept at using it, with Bucky noting in chapter 24 of the sequel that his love for loved ones, and more generally his habit of seeing the better natures of those who didn't even know they had better natures can be extremely powerful and - with the influence of Gambit - inspires at least one HeelFace Turn (Maddie's).
- Speaking of the latter, Xavier needles Sinister regarding it, since Maddie had been under his thumb since birth, under More Than Mind Control for all that time, and The Power of Love (combined with generally showing her a better way, months of Gambit carefully Defusing the Tyke Bomb, and well-timed revelation or two) was the tipping point that Sinister never understood, which brought about her HeelFace Turn, and always would have done.
- On the flip-side, love for Carol is stated by Harry to be the one thing (if she was killed) that would make him cross his personal Godzilla Threshold and become the Dark Phoenix. More generally, people he cares for being hurt or killed is the best way to unleash his inner monster.
- Evangelion 303: In chapter 13 Shinji finished his speech about how he had seen all sides of Asuka including the worst and darkest ones- and there was nothing that she could show him that would make him love her any less:
Shinji: You call it imprinting Thats all love is, isnt it? A form of imprinting! The kind of imprinting that can survive anything!
- HERZ: In 2015 Shinji was grieving because he loved Asuka and he could not save her. Reis love towards Shinji led her to feel his angst, rebel against Gendo and help him. In 2027 it is Shinji and Asuka's love for each other and their daughter and Reis love for them which drives them to come up with a risky plan to save humankind and that love allows them to succeed.
- New Tamaran: This is how Starfire defeats Blackfire, and why Raven becomes a benevolent deity.
- The Harry Potter fanfic Oh God Not Again! had this to say about The Power Of Love:
"...What was that last part?" Sirius asked.
" Remus and Tonks got married?" Harry repeated innocently.
"No, the other last part. The one about Voldemort killing you," Sirius clarified.
"Oh, well he killed me and I had a nice chat with Dumbledore's soul who informed me that just because I was imagining things it didn't make it not real and then I got better."
Sirius just stared at him.
"It gets better," Harry grinned. "Apparently I only survived because of the power of love."
Sirius groaned. "For the record, when you're telling this to other people, try to come up with an explanation that sounds more badass."
- This, to an only slightly lesser extent than The Power of Friendship, is what drives the good guys in the Elemental Chess Trilogy.
- Screwed around with in With Strings Attached. When George confronts the mind-controlled Paul, he cautiously attempts to snap Paul out of it by mentioning his wife Linda. Paul's response: Who's Linda? However, Paul reveals later that he had thrown off the mind control within fifteen minutes and was faking it, so the trope never even got a chance to operate.
- Stellar Requiem's TRON: Legacy Fan Fic ''Survivor's Tale'' plays this card for everything it's worth. First, in the arena "Rinzler" and Yori recognize each other during an Involuntary Battle to the Death and it leaves enough of an opening for her to perform a move that knocks them both out. Second, Clu tries to have her executed, but she invokes "This isn't who you are" and stops Rinzler dead in his tracks. Thirdly, after she's been repurposed, Tronzler is able to set her free, even when he can't free himself. Lastly, Yori is asked by a cloaked figure in the back of the tavern if she could ever forgive Rinzler. She admits that while she would find it hard to forgive his actions, she will always love him, no matter what he calls himself. That's when the stranger reveals himself as Tron and the pair are finally reunited.
- This trope is quoted word for word in the Harry Potter fanfic HERMIONE AND GINNY VERSUS THE SPACE WIZARDS by Harry, after Ginny and Hermione have sex, combine their powers and free the other wizards so they can fight the evil Spacewizard Griz'nakh.
- Blind had this conversation between Naruto and the Kyuubi:
Naruto: Will it (being Hokage) really make me happy?
Kyuubi: Kid, I used to go around killing people thinking it would make me happy.
Naruto: Did it?
Kyuubi: Nope. But then I found a mate and we both went around killing people together and then I was happy.
Naruto: You... are a sick bastard.
Kyuubi: Yeah. But what did you learn from that?
Naruto: I need a mate to be happy?
Kyuubi: Most people do.
- In the Heroes story Lost and Found, when Claire sees Danko shoot Elle, it allows her to access Elle's power and unleash an electrical Heart Beatdown on him.
- In the Facing the Future Series:
- Destiny is a Hazy Thing: The Power Of Love is so strong that even Eldritch Abominations aren't immune to it.
- Children of Time: love is powerful enough to break and remake Time... and redeem a certain detective...
- In the Horseshoes and Hand Grenades story, A Month of Sundays this is played straight and subverted. It's played straight with Mari who frees Miura from Gamou's mind control spell that forced him to become the Aries Zodiarts. Subverted with Yayoi with Haruto after being transformed into a Creepy Doll with a mentality of a five-year-old boy. He responds with What Is This Thing You Call "Love"? and she slices him up and leaves him to burn.
- Invoked and subverted in the Ah! My Goddess fanfiction Haloes. Urd has a nasty bout with aphasia that robs her of spoken and written language, forcing her to communicate by pantomime and gibberish utterance. She later develops the ability to use music to convey her emotions and utters her very first word and sentence ("Keichi" and "I love you"), apparently out of sheer love. It's subverted, though: By then, she has merely learned to, at first very awkwardly, translate her Starfish Language in human words. But the fact she was in love acted as a strong motivation to do so.
- In the Empath: The Luckiest Smurf story "Empath's Wedding", when Empath and Hefty find out that Smurfette's "heart" has been taken by Chlorhydris so that she could no longer feel love for anybody, including her husband-to-be Empath, Empath decides that he's going to give Smurfette his "heart" so she could feel love again when Hefty, willing to prove himself to be Smurfette's One True Love, decides to do it in Empath's place. Empath, wishing for Hefty to be a happy Smurf who would marry Smurfette instead of himself, returns the favor and gives Hefty his "heart".
- In The End of Ends, Terra realizes who Count Logan really is and how her actions caused his rise to power. She then devotes herself to saving him because deep down, she loves him. This allows her to tap into the powers of the Light Prognosticus and over power Count Logan... it gets subverted though. All that she managed to do was roughen him up. Had it not been for The Starscream, Logan wouldn't have changed. It's only when he is mortally wounded that he began to redeem and not even the Power of Love was able to save him.
- In Mega Man: Defender of the Human Race, this is a frequent theme, particularly between Mega Man, his family, and Kalinka. In episode 11, chapter 8, ProtoMan uses his love for Nomad to gather the courage to restore his old self. Two chapters later, he calms Nomad out of her destructive programming and pain. And in the finale of episode 11, memories of those he loves enable him to fight Wily's fear program and turn on him.
- In the Star Trek (2009) fanfic Written in the Stars, the love between Fem!Kirk and Spock is shown to be so powerful that no matter the reality, the pair will always be drawn to each other.
- A straight example occurs in chapter two, in which the Prime Fem!Kirk tells the Alt Reality Fem!Kirk about the incident with the Medusan, Kollos. In this story, the only way to cure the insanity (brought about by looking upon Kollos) is if the victim's true love locks eyes with said victim. Fem!Kirk did this when Spock goes insane, curing him within seconds.
- Another straight example, similar to the first, happens when Spock goes crazy due to Pon Farr. He doesn't recognize anyone and attacks anyone on sight... except for Fem!Kirk, who he even protects from anything he considers a threat to her. It is revealed that this happened because he recognized her as his bondmate.
- As the title implies, this is the central premise of Romance and the Fate of Equestria. It begins shortly after the show's Season 2 finale, where the Power of Love was witnessed firsthand, and Twilight decides to pursue romance for the purpose of supplementing her studies on The Power of Friendship, thus kick-starting the entire story.
- The the Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL fanfic series Numbershots considers this as the natural evolution of The Power of Friendship. During the Duel with the Numbers Distributor in "Numbershot C13: True Love Shines Through All", when Kotori combines it with ZEXAL, she becomes so powerful that she brings her beloved Yuma (who heroically sacrificed himself to save her just in the previous chapter) Back from the Dead. Before they proceed to thoroughly kick his ass by combining their ace monsters.
ZEXAL!Kotori: This is a power someone like you could never understand. Numbers have hearts and feelings, like humans! They are capable of loving each other! And when you combine that love with the power of ZEXAL... the result is a power that cannot be stopped!
Numbers Distributor: This is impossible! I killed you! You should be dead!
ZEXAL!Kotori: Don't you listen? When the power of love is combined with the power of ZEXAL... anything can be accomplished!
- God Slaying Blade Works:
- Shirou Emiya has been seriously injured by Mordred and is almost out of mana, preventing him from using his magic. Then Mordred attempts to kill Guinevere. Arondight, the sword of Sir Lancelot, immediately appears in Shirou's hand and restores his energy so he can defend her. Lancelot loved Guinevere so much that his weapon was imbued with that love, and even though the Campione!verse Guinevere is a different person from the Nasuverse Guinevere, it would still do anything to protect her.
- Shirou gets controlled by Venus, the Goddess of Love, but eventually breaks free because of his love for Sakura Matou.
- This is basically the Central Theme of the Contractually Obligated Chaos series, best exemplified through a Call-Back to an actual quote from the source material.
I believe that when you love someone, the impossible becomes possible.
- Played for Drama in the Triptych Continuum. In this continuity, Cadence's alicorn magic makes her the one pony who can directly manipulate love. And unlike in many portrayals, she is not limited to reinforcing existing love. She can create love, destroy it, transfer it, all with a thought. Needless to say, she is terrified of what she could become if she let herself.
- The Bridge:
- Princess Cadance specializes in love magic, and the Crystal Heart is an Amplifier Artifact for love. It is among the only things able to reliably counter King Sombra's hate and darkness spells.
- While the Sirens normally channel and feed on The Power of Hate, Aria Blaze eventually remembers that her mother Hymnia taught her a song that channels love. She finds that love feeds her and powers her up much more than hate does.
- In Sword Art Online Abridged:
- Invoked but subverted in Episode 10, when Kirito and Asuna face off against the Fatal Scythe.
- And mentioned again in Episode 11, after Asuna breaks out of GM-induced paralysis to take a fatal blow for Kirito.
Kayaba: Huh? How did she... [amused] There's not supposed to be any way to break out of Admin-paralysis! Guess I'll have to add that one to the log, "Power of Love might cause paralysis to fail." Heh, it's the damnedest thing, somehow that never came up in beta-testing.
- The Queen's Consort: It was light magic that gave Elsa amnesia, so it stands to reason that light magic can undo it, and what is more bright and pure than love? The trope is practically stated by name.
- Advice and Trust:
- Asuka and Shinji's love for each other is also the only reason why they manage to stay sane. And their love for Rei (regardless of what type of love it was) gave her support during her second detox.
- Kaworu had found that feelings like love and lust are the strongest mental buffers against the Call (his subconscious desire to cause Third Impact), so situations where Rei returns his affections (like giving him a "platonic" kiss on Christmas or asking him out on a date) can drown it out entirely.
- In the climax of Batman: Angel of Death, Selina's unwavering love for her sister proves stronger than the years of conditioning that served to make Maggie subservient to the Order of St. Dumas and Père Roland, defusing her in time to save her sister from being burned at the stake.
- Downplayed in The Dark Lady. While it is able to return Rumpel's memories after the Black Fairy curses him and break most curses, it is made clear that the Curse of the Dark One is an exception and immune to true loves kiss.
- Played for Drama in many Prince Hans redemption fics such as Warm Hugs and The Phoenix and the Snowbird. Owing to the fact that he was ignored and neglected by his own abusive family, he starts off as a grouchy man who derisively sees love as an idiotic thing only good for fairy-tale romances. But as the fics progress, a Jerk-to-Nice-Guy Plot forces him to realize that Love Redeems, how his hatred warped his mind and made him an enemy of the heroes, and that there's more to life than just being power-hungry. Sometimes, the heroes (Elsa, Anna, Kristoff and Olaf) even call him out on his cynical beliefs about love and/or ask where it got him, to which Hans is unable to answer. Also in many of these fanfics, he even genuinely falls for Elsa.
- Son of the Sannin: It is well documented in canon that Hinata is stronger and more confident when Naruto is present, so the fact that they're Childhood Friends here means that she is that much more powerful (to the point that she supplants Ino as the top ranked kunoichi of their graduating class). Her mother took notice of this, and made sure to have Naruto come over to the Hyuga compound whenever Hinata was sparring as they were growing up.
- In Going Another Way, this, amplified by Shinji and Rei's EVAs, is what brings forth Arimsael's downfall. Well, weaken him greatly enough for him to separate from the EVAs for Asuka, Toki, and Hikari (previously barred by his AT Field enhanced by the EVAs he was linked to) to charge in and stab him with their Prog knives. Upon nearing self-destruction, Toji then rolls up the Angel into a ball and chucks it sky high, and then Mana in her Trident delivers the final blow.
- The central theme of Beyond Heroes: Of Sunshine and Red Lyrium is the triumph of this over despair. Both the Inquisitor and Varric are in frequent danger of succumbing to despair, and it's this trope which keeps them back from the edge.
- The Bolt Chronicles: Beginning with the "The Ship," Bolt and Mittens develop a romantic relationship which continues through all following chronological stories. In the final story, "The Gift," it is revealed that they are soulmates and their ability to become a couple helped them learn their last two main life lessons (tolerance and unconditional love respectively), allowing them to become complete souls and reside permanently in Nirvana's afterlife.
- A somewhat twisted example in Someone to Watch Over Me. Knowing that akuma powers are tied to their emotions, Gabriel sets out to crush Adrien's spirit and thus prepare him for akumatisation, in hopes that his love for his mother will make him unusually powerful.
- The Many Dates of Danny Fenton: In the timeline where Danny is involved with Kim Possible, after he falls into a coma in a failed attempt to get his powers back, Danny is able to hear her voice and it's her being in trouble that awakens him.
- Children of Remnant: This is ultimately how the battle between the Claimed, the conspiracy, and the Huntsmen of Remnant gets stopped. Blake and Emerald's bluster is revealed to be exactly that when they can't bring themselves to attack Qrow and Amber, Jaune revealing how much he was tortured by Salem provokes the conspiracy into a massive My God, What Have I Done?, and Pyrrha, despite being incredibly desperate and willing to attack anyone, comes to a screeching halt when she realizes that she almost cut Yang's arm off in her rage.
- In the Harry Potter fanfic I'm not on drugs, I'm just in love, Harry gets dosed with a particularly nasty variant of Love Potion that makes him violent against the people trying to help him. His love for Ginny lets him break out of it long enough to get treated. Ginny, being a Weasely, teases him for this mercilessly.
Ginny: [grinning] You love me so much a love potion didn't work.
Harry: [grumbling] There was no love potion. I was just trying to have an affair.
- In the Supernatural fic Keep Your Love Alive, Castiel manages to defeat Chuck by appealing to his sister Amara's love of Dean to convince her to do a Split-Personality Takeover from within Chuck so that she can help them save Dean. Chuck even lampshades it, asking disbelievingly if Castiel's last move is really going to be an appeal to the power of love right before it proves to work.
- Barbie and the Magic of Pegasus: The Wand of Light can only unleash its power for good and good alone; if used with negative emotions such as anger, it refuses to work. Annika had to figure that out the hard way.
- The Book of Life:
- A major theme of the film.
Del Toro: Its the story of two lovers who refuse to be separated by anything... it's about love not giving up.
- Manolo Sanchez. His voice actor states that his true power is love.
- A major theme of the film.
- The trope frequently pops up in the Disney Animated Canon (and in Disney in general).
- Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch has perhaps the best designed example: Near the end of the movie, Stitch sucumbs to the glitch and finally shuts down. Lilo and the others mourn him so deeply that their Love and Sorrow seemingly overturn Death itself. Jumba even admits that there is no scientific explanation, declares it a miracle, and celebates.
- Sleeping Beauty: Chillingly, Maleficent is one of the few villains who knows how powerful love is. Rather than trying to undo the True Love's Kiss Curse Escape Clause, she decides to build it into the Ironic Hell she's arranged for Prince Philip. She gives him a terrifying Hannibal Lecture about how she'll release him once the full hundred years have passed, so that Aurora (who has slept in Narnia Time) will awaken to a broken, decrepit old man. If it weren't for the fairies' meddling, love would've kept Phillip going before destroying him.
- The Sword in the Stone: Merlin tells Wart that love is a powerful force after a lovelorn female squirrel becomes heartbroken when Wart is transformed back into a human.
Merlin: You know, lad, that love business is a powerful thing.
Wart: Greater than gravity?
Merlin: Well yes, boy, in its way... yes, I'd say it's the greatest force on earth.
- Disney's Beauty and the Beast where the Beast, seemingly dead, is revived and turns into a Prince when Belle tells him she loves him.
- While love doesn't actually accomplish anything supernatural in the Aladdin films, the fact that genies can't cause people to fall in love puts Love on the same level of greater-than-phenomenal-cosmic-power as Life or Death.
- In Frozen (2013), an act of true love is the only thing that can save Anna from turning into solid ice. And in a surprising twist for a Disney movie, the act of love is not True Love's Kiss, or even romantic love, but Anna sacrificing herself for her sister Elsa - an act of true familial love on Anna's part. Love also turns out to be the trigger that allows Elsa to control her ice powers.
- In Kubo and the Two Strings, Kubo defeats his grandfather the Moon King by applying a weaponized version of this!
- Averted, in the DVD version of the Disney film Pocahontas. She invokes this in the song "If I Never Knew You," singing that with their love she thought "Somehow we'd make the whole world bright", but as she notes in the following line, that didn't exactly work out. Much of the hostilities in the film are an unintended result of their relationship, though she regrets nothing.
- In Rio, the power of love is what gives Blu the power to fly.
- The Secret of NIMH: Only when her children are in mortal danger does Mrs. Brisby's love and courage become a tangible force, with the Stone as a foci. Even more explicit is the Stone's inscription: You can unlock any door, if you only have the key. According to the Theme Song "Flying Dreams," Love is the key.
- In Strange Magic, the only thing that can break the power of a love potion is true love.
- In The Swan Princess, the only way to break Odette's curse is to make a vow of everlasting love and prove it to the world. Prince Derek does this by defeating Rothbart so that she could live as well as asking for her forgiveness and telling her the reasons that he loves her.
- Yellow Submarine: To defeat the glove, All You Need Is Love.
- The trope takes its name and first sentence from the Huey Lewis and the News song of the same name, which was written for and featured in Back to the Future. The film provides many examples of The Power of Love. Sometimes The Power of Creepy Probably-Incestuous Love. This is also apparent in Back to the Future 3, when Clara Clayton transforms herself from a quiet schoolteacher to a full-on superwoman, who can scale trains in motion, in order to catch up with Doc before he goes back to 1985.
- The tagline for the film Breaking the Waves is "Love is a mighty power", though the film employs this trope in just about the most horrific manner imaginable, leaving you to ponder the mental state of the filmmaker.
- The Christmas Toy uses this near the end. Mew is seen out of place and as a result is frozen. This causes Rugby to realize how much of a jerk he'd been to Mew, who'd been nothing but helpful to him throughout the film. Rugby glumly sings a song about how much he loves Mew, and this thankfully brings Mew back to life. Then we see the other toys in the playroom singing the same song and bringing the other toys who'd been frozen back to life as well (how they knew about the magic song that brings frozen toys back to life before Rugby came back in and told them about it is never explained).
- Cirque du Soleil: Journey of Man uses this trope in conjunction with The Four Loves as The Everyman protagonist/narrator goes on his metaphorical journey through life. The story postulates that a person's fulfillment comes when they hold three metaphorical keys within them: "Dreams, faith, and love." Love turns out to be the most important of them. As a child, he has all three with Affection/Family (represented by his guides, the Flounes) as the source of love, but adolescent rebellion and a desire for Romantic Love as a young adult leads him to pursue the latter via a Deal with the Devil for material gain. Because The Dark Side Will Make You Forget, he loses his dreams and faith along with any kind of love, becoming an aloof middle-aged man alone in the world — then a Vagabond Girl and her companions reach out to him with Friendship. This moves him enough that in accepting their love he not only regains all three keys but also becomes an embodiment of Unconditional Love and a completely fulfilled person who can guide others towards similar enlightenment.
- Averted in Dance of the Dead, after the students (well, MOST of them anyway) manage to escape the school and the zombie infestation, Jimmy and Lindsey share a passionate kiss in front of the school, at the exact same time as the building explodes. The timing would indicate that it's the passion between the two rekindled young lovers that is causing the explosion, but it's really just the metric ton of C4 Coach Keel set up around the perimeter.
- This is the whole Aesop of Disney's Enchanted, right down to True Love's Kiss.
- In Ernest Scared Stupid, trolls can be killed by milk (which represents "a mother's care"). When Trantor becomes more powerful, milk can't stop him. The only thing Ernest can do is to defeat him with "the heart of a child" — unconditional love — and hugging and dancing with him does the trick.
- At the end of the 1926 film adaptation of Faust, Faust flings himself onto Gretchen's pyre as she is being burned at the stake, and they are Together in Death. Mephisto believes that he has won The Bet with the archangel and now has dominion over the earth. The archangel holds otherwise, saying that one word has broken Faust's contract with Mephisto, won the bet for the angel, and saved humanity from Mephisto's rule. The film ends with a zoom in on the single word: "LIEBE."
- The Fifth Element, where the five central elements in the universe are earth, fire, wind, water ... and love. Could also be a subversion as, according to Luc Besson, the titular element is actually sex.
- The original HBO synopsis of The Fly (1986) described it as the story of "a scientist who is transformed by love — literally and metaphorically": It begins when he awkwardly approaches a beautiful journalist at a party, their romance inverts Love Makes You Uncreative and allows him to perfect his work, his Tragic Mistake is born of Alcohol-Induced Idiocy when he thinks he's being cuckolded, and as he undergoes a Slow Transformation her willingness to be a Living Emotional Crutch is the one thing that keeps his Split-Personality Takeover from progressing faster; when he realizes he will eventually hurt her without meaning to, he convinces her to leave him. When she seeks to abort the child he's sired, though, his heart and mind break together and render him crazed and wicked... She's saved from Romantic Fusion with him by her ex-lover managing to get a second wind after Seth maims him with corrosive vomit, while Seth ends up a Clipped-Wing Angel who puts his faith in this trope to end his suffering (and, perhaps, atone for his crimes) by communicating that he wants to die by her hand. She obliges him. The song playing in the background during the bar scene, Bryan Ferry's "Help Me", even has the repeated lyrics "There's a power in love/There's a danger in love/But I need love to help me find a way..."
- Freaky Friday (2003) has a non-romantic example, in which Tess and Anna must demonstrate familial "selfless love" in order to return to each other's bodies.
- In G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, during the film's climax the Baroness is able to subdue the nanites that are controlling her because her love for Duke is stronger than the nanites' influence over her mind. Looks like love > technology!
- In the first Harry Potter film (see its main mention under Literature), the sacrificial love protection that protected Harry from Voldemort's curse is taken a step further from the book when it enables Harry to reduce Quirrell to a pile of dust by touching him.
- In Hook, the grown up Peter regains his ability to fly when he remembers the love and joy he felt when his son was born.
- The Hugga Bunch's hugs are a symbol of love, and Bridget wants to keep her grandma healthy so she can keep receiving hugs. After Queen Admira freezes her, Bridget's friends from the Hugga Bunch are able to restore her to normal through hugs.
- In Interstellar, Cooper's love for his daughter enables him to literally transcend time and space to give her younger self the information required to save humanity.
- In Krull, the Power of Love manifests itself at the climax as the ability to throw fireballs. It Makes Sense in Context.
- In Manborg, love is what gives #1 Man the strength and hope to fight for humanity again. To quote an exchange between him and the Baron:
The Baron: What pathetic human desire made you throw it all away? It wasn't love, was it?
#1 Man: Yes.
The Baron: [looks down somewhat dejectedly] Oh.
- In the denouement to A Matter of Life and Death, the protagonist wins a second chance at life by virtue of love being the most powerful force in the world of the living, and therefore triumphing over the power of the celestial jury.
- In The Matrix, it appears that Neo's transformation into The One is sparked by Trinity telling his mostly-dead body that she loves him. However, the Power of Logic is also implicated: She loves Neo. She was told by the oracle that the man she loved would be the One; therefore, Neo is the One. The One would not be dead; therefore, Neo cannot be dead.
- And the fact that the sensation of Trinity kissing him makes Neo realize that despite the Matrix input, he isn't actually dead, so it makes sense.
- In The Naked Gun, Frank's power of love breaks Jane's Mind Control.
- In Next, the precognitive abilities of Nicolas Cage's character only allow him to see up to 2 minutes into his own future, except, for no apparent reason, for one recurring vision that presages the arrival of his eventual love interest. Once he's finally met and slept with her, he can see further ahead than ever before.
- Believe it or not, this is how Freddy Krueger is defeated in A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy's Revenge. When Freddy possesses the hero of the film, Jesse, and chases his girlfriend Lisa, Lisa states that she still loves him and kisses Jesse/Freddy. Jesse gains the strength to fight Freddy from within and destroy him, regaining control of his body.
- One Way Passage is a tragic romance between two doomed lovers — Dan is an escaped convict being taken back to San Francisco by boat to be executed, while fellow passenger Joan has a terminal illness. Throughout the film, Dan and Joan have been making toasts, breaking the glasses, and lying the stems of the shattered glasses on top of each other, as a symbol of their love. Dan and Joan pledge to meet each other at the Agua Caliente restaurant on New Year's Eve. When they land, Dan is taken away to Death Row, and Joan faints, presumably dying. The last scene is at a bar on New Year's. A melancholy Skippy is drinking at the Agua Caliente bar, with neither Dan nor Joan in attendance. Suddenly a sound of breaking glass is heard. The last shot shows the stems of two shattered glasses, one lying on top of the other one.
- Pacific Rim: Because Synchronization requires two people, they have to get along really well with no secrets.
- In Peter Pan, Wendy asks if she can give him a "thimble" and kisses him. This actually makes the guy BURST INTO FLIGHT WITH A HUGE SMILE ON HIS FACE, and his feelings for Wendy allows him to come back and beat Hook (with the help of the Darling siblings and the Lost boys chanting "Old! Alone! Done for!" towards Hook).
Wendy: This belongs to you, and always will.
- In Poltergeist II: The Other Side, it's the "light of the family" shed by the Freelings' love for one another that repels the Big Bad on the Other Side.
- The Princess Bride references the power of "true love" several times. In the very beginning, Westley asserts that he will be reunited with Buttercup because of the power of their love. Later in the film, he resists deadly torture by becoming only "mostly dead." When his comatose body is asked why he's still "slightly alive," Westley moans, "Truuuuee loooove." Buttercup also asserts that her love cannot be denied, but it's mostly for show. She's ready to kill herself when Westley suddenly appears and scolds her for her lack of faith.
- Santo vs. la hija de Frankestein: Santo's girlfriend is hypnotized and ordered to cut out his eyes and deliver them to Dr Frankenstein. She gets as far as holding the knife over the helpless luchador's face before this trope snaps her out of it.
- Parodied in Scary Movie 3. Upon hearing Cindy and George express their love for each other, the corpse of Tabitha turns into a beautiful little girl and says that their love has broken the curse and she won't ever have to kill again. "Really?" asks Cindy and Tabitha turns back into a corpse and admits "Nah, I was just screwing with you."
- Scott Pilgrim vs. The World subverts the trope. Scott gains a weapon called The Power of Love from proclaiming his love to Ramona in the climax. The weapon isn't strong enough, so he dies. On his second attempt, he instead proclaims that he's fighting for himself and gets The Power of Self-Respect, which is vastly superior.
- In the film version of Stardust, Yvaine's love for Tristan allows her to go supernova and incinerate Lamia. Because of her love, Tristan now "possessed the heart a star" and got bonus immortality too.
- A theme throughout the Star Wars saga. In Return of the Jedi, it's how Luke helps his father Darth Vader get out of the Dark Side and become Anakin Skywalker again.
- There are few places where TRON shows off its Disney origins, but this and The Power of Friendship overrides even the nastiest brainwashing. In the first, the title character pulls his "counterpart" (equivalent of "wife") Yori out of a repurposed state. In the second... a good, solid look from Flynn pulls him back from twenty years of enslavement.
- A more cynical and indirect usage: In the film Ultraviolet, the heroine weeps over a dead boy, causing him to come back to life — because her tears infected him with vampirism.
- In The Wolfman (2010), Lawrence's feelings for Gwen bring out what's left of his humanity, but only right before Gwen "sets him free."
- X-Men Film Series:
- X-Men: First Class: When Charles is helping all of the mutants train, the most effective memory to focus Erik's powers is Channukah with his mother, before the Holocaust.
- X-Men: Apocalypse: If Charles has a secondary mutation, it would be this — he has the ability to "transform" the people around him into better versions of themselves. His unwavering love and support for his daughter figure Jean allows her to overcome her fears about her Phoenix power, and she fries Apocalypse with deadly efficiency, saving the world and the Professor's life in the process. Magneto pulls a HeelFace Turn when he realizes that his love for Xavier is stronger than his hate towards human society, which has murdered his family twice over. Peter could've easily returned to his mother's basement and continued wasting his potential after the Final Battle (especially considering that he had decided to withhold from Erik that he's his son), but it's implied that Maximoff was touched by Charles' worry for his well-being when Xavier had created a telepathic link between them while Quicksilver was fighting Apocalypse. It should be noted that Charles hadn't spoken to Peter in a decade, but the former's capacity for love is so great that he had opened his mind to a young mutant whom he barely knows, and he sincerely cared about whether Maximoff got hurt or not. The self-described "total loser" Quicksilver is now a member of the X-Men who can make a positive difference in the world.
- To quote Virgil, "Omnia vincit Amor"note and "Et nos cedamus Amori..."note
- In L. M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables series, this is what saves Gilbert from dying of typhoid fever, though in a non-magical way. Heartbroken over Anne's rejection and sick as a dog, he gets a letter from Anne's friend, informing him that Anne is not getting married to Roy Gardner (her beau of two years) and advising Gilbert to "try again". He remarks to Anne later that the doctors were amazed at the speed of his recovery after that.
- The Power of Love was a particularly troubling notion to the Legalists during the Warring States Period, as it could inspire people to defy the government in favour of getting a better deal for their families. Hence, The Book of Lord Shang advises taking measures to keep peasants occupied with nothing more than farming, and to prevent them from having more than a subsistence living.
- In the moving final lines of The Bridge of San Luis Rey, the Abbess Maria contemplates the souls of those who have died and those who are still alive but will come after them. She concludes that love is the only thing that gives life meaning.
Maria: But soon we shall die and all memory of those five will have left the earth, and we ourselves shall be loved for a while and forgotten. But the love will have been enough; all those impulses of love return to the love that made them. Even memory is not necessary for love. There is a land of the living and a land of the dead and the bridge is love, the only survival, the only meaning.
- Scarlett's sister Tella dies at the end of Caraval. Since she wasn't one of Legend's performers, she should not have come back to life, but Scarlett used the power of love to wish her back.
- This is a strong theme in Chronicles of Nick. Every action done for love yields good long term effects, even if short term is harder to deal with. Meanwhile actions done for revenge or anger always come back to haunt the perpetrator.
- In The Chronicles of Prydain, this is used to make the Pelydryn illuminate the night sky so that it appears to be noon.
- Emily Elizabeth's love is what caused Clifford the Big Red Dog to become so big, even though he was the runt of the litter. The Expository Theme Tune of the Scholastic animated version lays it out — "Clifford needed Emily, so she chose him for her own / And her love made Clifford grow so big that the Howards had to leave their home."
- In Devon Monk's Dead Iron, LeFel has to kill Jeb because otherwise his and Mae's love would protect her.
- In Divergent, Tobias, under Jeanine's mind-control, becomes horribly close to shooting Tris, but the sound of Tris's voice makes him snap out of it.
- The Divine Comedy:
- Despite every assurance of Virgil, Dante is wholly unwilling to go through the final firewall between Purgatory and Heaven until he hears Beatrice's name. By virtue of that romantic love, Dante summons the courage to go through a fire more intense than anything on Earth to find Beatrice on the other side.
- The last verse of Paradiso and the Comedy as a whole describes God as "the love that moves the Sun and the other stars." This Happy Ending gives reason for this epic to be called a Comedy since nothing could provide greater joy than to know that the essence of existence is an eternal love between Father, Son, and Spirit.
- In Jim Butcher's The Dresden Files Love takes many forms and is shown in many forms, from a parental sacrifice, to True Love's Kiss, to a holy Sword that is empowered by Love, and the revelation that Love, in its purest form, is a form of creation and so when the Universe was made, it was out of an act of Love.
- To the White Court, a species of vampires (specifically, the Raith family) who feed on human lust, fear, and/or despair, love is poison to the lust-feeders.
- If a White Court vampire attempts to feed on a person who is, or was in a deep loving relationship, the vampire will be burned. Years after Harry last slept with Susan, who was the last woman he was with, the Love created from that night remains with him so he is protected until he has sex with another person.
- Even symbols of love can be dangerous, a wedding band burned one vampire while a rose given in love to another causes the vampire who touched it to be poisoned by the rose's thorns. Even if the mortal genuinely loves the vampire, that love can be dangerous. One vampire with a mortal lover wears a thick coat between his neck and the hand-knitted scarf she made for him so it doesn't burn him.
- On a more ambiguous note, Harry is only able to help Susan, who has been bitten and partially transformed into a Red Court vampire and is drugged and newly bloodthirsty break out of it when he tells her he loves her. It's beautiful and tragic.
- There also exists Amoracchius, The Sword of Lovenote . It contains a Nail that is one of the three that pierced Jesus Christ. Anyone who wields it in proper cause is a major power in that world. There also exist Swords of Hope and Faith, but it's slightly implied that Love is the greatest of them. If a person is wielding it in defense of a loved one, the Sword will grant the person its power and protection. One Knight was a family man with lots of kids and a wife, as well as a love for his fellow man. This fit well with the purpose of the Knights of the Cross isn't to smite evil, but help those who have fallen into its grasp a chance for redemption, and only kill if there is no other choice. The Sword is also aware of the wielder's intentions and will permit some to use it in unique situations. Harry once witnessed a half-human half-monster mother, whose kind are repelled by holy objects, take up the Sword to defend her child from worse monsters.
- Later in the same battle with the monster-mother, when Susan, that monster-mother, has killed and took in the blood of her victim, and so transforming her into a soulless Red Court vampire, her love for her and Harry's daughter helps her hold onto her humanity long enough for Harry to sacrifice her on an altar the Red Court planned to kill the child in a dark ritual. Instead, Susan's sacrifice allows her, now one of the youngest Red Court vampires, to send this horrible death curse back up her vampire-sire line, killing any "siblings" who are older, then her "parent", and then any brood-siblings of the "parent", children of the brood-siblings, and up the line further until all who are "older" than she are now dead. As the Red Court originated with just one vampire and Susan is just five "generations removed", she ends up wiping out nearly of all the Red Court vampires.
- Uriel tells Harry, "Whatever you do, do it for love. If you keep to that, your path will never wander so far from the light that you can never return." Taking this advice, Harry departs so far from the light that very few people have ever returned. How these factors will interact in future books is anyone's guess.
- Queen Mab has a healthy respect for this emotion.
Mab: So many terrible things are done for love. For love will men mutilate themselves and murder rivals. For love will even a peaceful man go to war. For love, man will destroy himself, and that right willingly.
- True Love's Kiss is sometimes the only way to break enchantments on couples set by fae. See that page for more information.
- In the novel Ghost Story demonstrates the love of a Band of Brothers group. Fitz is a street kid who leads the younger boys in his care with love and respect, while they all serve under fear their leader Aristedes. Aristedes uses his ability to move fast and a Compelling Voice to be The Fagin of this band. After two other characters wound Aristedes and Fitz stands up to him, Aristedes commands a boy named Zero to kill Fitz, but using nothing more than his words and the deep bond he has with Zero, Fitz gets him to drop the knife Zero is holding and frees the boys of Aristedes' control.
- One character even equates Love with the Creation of Universe. Especially when one considers many are conceived during an act of unconditional love. Major Spoiler for Skin Game. And so when Lash, shadow of a Fallen Angel, willingly died to save the life of Harry Dresden, her host, she did so out of her genuine and unconditional love. What remained after that merged with the bit of Harry's soul he gave her and from it something new was created: A child. A spirit of Intellect carried inside Harry's head, though he didn't know this. She has all the knowledge of a Fallen Angel but nurtured on the feelings of love Harry has for his friends and family.
- To the White Court, a species of vampires (specifically, the Raith family) who feed on human lust, fear, and/or despair, love is poison to the lust-feeders.
- Takes a dark twist in Dune. Doctor Yueh is Beneath Suspicion as The Mole due to his Sukh mental conditioning which prevents him from purposefully taking another life. While suborning Sukh conditioning is supposed to be impossible, the Harkonnens' Mentat Piter De Vries claims that with the right lever one can move a planet. Yueh's wife Wannah is that "lever". When Yueh eventually betrays the Duke, he tells him that some things have greater sway over his mind than his conditioning.
- David Eddings:
- In The Belgariad and The Malloreon, 'Zakath was newly crowned at eighteen, madly in love and a candidate for becoming The Good King. A plot against his life was perpetrated by his lover, so he sentenced her to death. Too late, he learned she had been an innocent set up by the Murgo king, Taur Urgas. After a month locked in his room, Zakath emerged as a combination of Love Makes You Evil and the Empty Shell. Decades later, his life is saved by the mysterious Cyradis who then puts her own life into his hands to ensure he helps the heroes. Love Redeems him into a Good Is Not Soft version of The Good King.
- Also in The Belgariad, Polgara manages to defy an actual God thanks to the power of her love for Durnik, and saves the universe in the process.
- In The Elenium and The Tamuli, there is the goddess Aphrael. Her "real" form is an adult woman, but she always appears to everyone as an eight-year-old girl. This allows her to use The Power Of Love on everyone. When a cute young girl asks to sit in your lap, no one can refuse. Once she sits in your lap and gives you a kiss, she will get her way on everything she wants.
- In Ella Enchanted the main character (Cinderella) is cursed to always be obedient, no matter who gives her orders. When the prince she loves proposes to her, she is horrified because she is certain that someone will use her to hurt him (and her wicked stepmother and stepsisters immediately order her to say "yes"). She promptly tells him that she is cursed (violating one of the oldest and strongest orders that her parents gave to her). Ella goes on confessing to him and explaining why she can't marry him for two pages before she realizes that her curse has been broken by The Power Of Love.
- A central theme in The English Patient is the question of whether love can transcend national boundaries in wartime. The short answer? Yes. The long answer? Yes, but the results aren't always pretty, and don't necessarily last.
- In The Fangs of K'aath, the power of love in the heroes is able to repel the minions of the titular demon as if they are physically burned and cancel out a magic poison at the book's climax.
- In Galaxy of Fear: The Planet Plague, Tash gets infected with The Blob Monster Virus and thanks to it becomes more irritable and driven by thoughts of Revenge for Alderaan. Negative emotions seem to speed the progression, and at the climax she's oozing slime and having blob goo tendrils waving out of her skin and has to stop and instead focus on what she's fighting for and her love for the dead. The tendrils drop off. She's not cured, but it handles the symptoms until she can be taken to be treated. Vaguely justified, in that she's Force Sensitive and a doctor earlier exposited about the illness.
"Your body has a certain temperature, and usually it creates certain kinds of chemicals in your blood, your brain, and all the different parts of your body. But when your body changes — as when you are angry, or sad, or when you are sick — your body temperature changes, and your brain sends signals to produce different chemicals. Somehow this virus affects those signals and feeds off of them."
- The running theme of The Gargoyle is that no matter how much tragedy that the Narrator and Marianne Engel go through, including their maybe past-lives, their love for each other is strong enough to carry them on to the next life.
- Subverted in the Georgina Kincaid series by Mead. The heroine is a succubus, feeding on life force through sex. Every time she has sex. It means that she cannot sleep with the one she loves, ever, because that would shorten his life.
- Gods of Mars: When the Big Bad strands the protagonists on a dying planet, Bielanna saves them by harnessing the rogue trader Roboute Surcoufs love for his ship and crew to open a portal leading back to his stateroom aboard said ship.
- In the Harry Potter series, love is said to be the source of the force which saved Harry from Voldemort in his infancy, and is cited as the secret power he has over You-Know-Who.
- On the other hand, love is the reason for Severus Snape's decision to betray Lord Voldemort, who could neither understand nor detect this decision because it was motivated by love. Voldemort's blindness to the emotion also leaves him vulnerable to the Malfoy family's betrayal. It's patently obvious to anyone watching (ie. Dumbledore, Harry) that any of those three would sell him down the river in a heartbeat to save the other two.
- The ultimate example of how love is his power is near the finale of the story when Harry, to protect his friends, allows himself to be killed. His love for them was so great that he gave up his life, and in so doing destroyed the Horcrux embedded within his soul, leaving Voldemort vulnerable. Voldemort could not imagine somebody killing themselves for another and so didn't realize the significance of the sacrifice. More than that, his willingness to die for them provided everyone in the castle with the same type of protection his mother gave him.
- Word of God states that the reason that Molly Weasley was made to kill Bellatrix Lestrange was to show that a mother's love is far more powerful than an obsessive, fanatic love.
- Used subtly in Deathly Hallows. Harry's love for his girlfriend Ginny helps keep him together after Ron ditches him and Hermione.
- At its basic core, The Power Of Love in Harry Potter means the ability to care about another person, even more than about yourself. This is what Harry has and Voldemort lacks, and this is why Harry is always surrounded by close friends and reliable allies, that would die to protect him, and why Voldemort only has groupies and vultures with him, held in line with fear.
- The Heroes of Olympus series:
- This is how Piper saves Jason. Either that or he was Only Mostly Dead.
- Arguably, while she does have feelings for Jason, it may not have had anything to do with that she simply Charmspoke his soul to keep it from going to Hades. Still technically fits the trope, since only children of Aphrodite, goddess of love, can do this...
- It was revealed in the second book that the Doors Of Death are open and heroes can escape death for the same reason that monsters reform almost instantly. The Power of Love probably helped, but Gwen got back by herself, so...
- In The Son of Neptune Percy's memory has been wiped but Amnesia Missed a Spot: the name of his girlfriend Annabeth. Their relationship was too strong to erase completely, and his feelings for her motivate him to keep fighting throughout the book. It pays off: He gets both his memories and Annabeth back.
- His Dark Materials:
- Basically the entire point of The Amber Spyglass: as the second Eve, Lyra experiencing love helps to maintain the flow of Dust through The Multiverse. Complicated by the fact that the local Corrupt Church believes the prophecy to refer to a second Fall of Man instead, as well as by jittery publishers who censored what reads like a Did They or Didn't They? scene between underage characters. At minimum, though, True Love's Kiss helped save the multiverse.
- The subtle knife is an Absurdly Sharp Blade that can cut through any material object and even the fabric of the universe. Yet the blade will shatter if the user thinks of a loved one as they use the knife. It is strongly implied this is because the knife cannot cut through love.
- In Robert E. Howard's The Hour of the Dragon, this is what inspires Zenobia to rescue Conan the Barbarian from the oubliette.
- Everything Peeta does in The Hunger Games is motivated by his love for Katniss. Until he is hijacked into hating her and wanting to kill her in Mockingjay.
- Journey to Chaos:
- Generally speaking, love is one of the domains of Chaos (as is all emotion) and used for holy chaos magic.
- In the third book, Mana Mutation Menace, Eric's Declaration of Protection to Annala enables him to overcome ordercraft mind control (with chaotic assistance from Annala herself).
- Also in the third book, The Four Loves are essential to the only known method of curing "monsanity", A.K.A. mental mana mutation. Even after the FaceMonster Turn, there is at least one person that the new monster refuses to attack. This person can then help a specialist restore the victim's sanity.
- Tom Holt J.W. Wells & Co. series:
- In The Portable Door, the only way to get the swords out of the stones to get a hold of the keys on the end is to have two people who are in love pulling them.
- An even more bizarre version comes from You Don't Have to be Evil to Work Here. Screwing with True Love actually causes the entire Universe to go a bit out of whack, and maths stops working properly.
- In The Kane Chronicles, Carter Kane has been poisoned by a magical poison. His sister Sadie Kane can only heal him if she learns his true name. She does not find out about him until she tells him that he is her brother, and she will always love him, no matter what she knows about him. This shows that he means a lot to her, although they do not always get along well.
- In Kushiel's Legacy, perfect selfless love is the key to "make of the self a vessel where there is no self", and thereby hear the True Name of God. Phedre achieves it when she offers herself as a sacrifice in her soon-to-be adopted son's place.
- Legacy of the Dragokin: Kalak uses this to temporarily overturn Mordak's control and then to exorcise the monster from his own body in addition to Zarracka's.
- In the Lensman series, this is what enables Clarissa to find and bring back Kinnison after he went through the Hell Hole and was trapped in a far off dimension that not even Mentor and the children could find. The chapter's even called "The Power of Love".
- Charles Dickens tended to like this trope, but particularly in the case of Little Dorrit, when Love triumphs over parental abuse, economic swindles, psychological imprisonment, and hidden wrongs.
- There is an interesting use of this trope at the climax of Tad Williams's Memory, Sorrow and Thorn series. Just when it seems as if the Big Bad Storm King is about to be unleashed on the mortal world, The Hero Simon finally understands why he's been Dreaming of Things to Come about the creature's backstory as the Sitha prince Ineluki. It is to prepare him for the realization that the reason for Ineluki's desire to destroy existence is how brutally he suffered in life trying to defend his people from the depredations of mankind. This revelation allows him to do the one thing that doesn't feed the Storm King's power — forgive him, which weakens him just enough for Miramele to kill his physical host.
Simon: No... I will fear you, but I will not hate you.
Camaris: Forgiven... yes, let all be forgiven...
- In Poul Anderson's A Midsummer Tempest, The Power Of Love drives the magical rings that Oberon and Titania give Prince Rupert and Jennifer. Unfortunately, along comes The Vamp with a Love Potion and then they must soldier on without the magic.
- In Teresa Frohock's Miserere: An Autumn Tale, Lucian's deliberate attempt to keep from loving Lindsay, to protect her, weakened him; when he realized it, he let himself love her.
- Molly Moon has a scene in the third book where Molly is able to unlock the true power of her time-travel crystal (this one only allows her to go back, not forward) when she begs it to let her get back to the people she loves. She explains this to the villain, who doesn't understand love, and therefore ends up in prehistoric times on his own, while Molly is able to go through time more easily by channeling her love into the crystals.
- In Night of the Assholes, Todd and Barbara discover that genuine love and caring renders the assholes into a pacified state and manage to escape the house and the crowd of assholes surrounding it by making love. It is kept vague whether or not it was genuinely working or if the assholes were just toying with them.
- Isaac Asimov and Janet Asimov's Norby and the Queen's Necklace: Norby is comatose after the replica necklace gets attached to him. Jeff has to concentrate on his Touch Telepathy and invest in his love for his friend, first to contact the Others, then to break the necklace safely. The Other helping him makes it explicit that it is Jeff's love for Norby that is needed to save Norby's life.
- In Once Upon a Marigold, Marigold's love for Christian heals him of his arrow wound. Granted, she already had some magical ability thanks to a gift from a fairy at her christening.
Doctor: There's a faction that says laughter is the best medicine, and a smaller one that says love is.
- In The Phantom of the Opera, Christine's genuine compassion for Erik (despite not condoning his actions towards her) is enough for him to realize the error of his ways, pull a HeelFace Turn, and let her go free.
- In L. Jagi Lamplighter's Prospero in Hell, Miranda learns how the Sibyl acts as the instrument for the love of one of The Powers That Be.
- Averted in Ravelling Wrath. Even though Rinn and Yali love each other, Yali explicitly states that Rinn's love would not be enough to stop Rinn from killing her under the Blood God's influence.
- In The Reckoners Trilogy Megan speculates, with some disgust at the cliché, that this is what allows Epics to resist the corrupting nature of their powers - then does a Verbal Backspace when she realizes what she just admitted. It turns out to be courage in any case.
- The novelization of Revenge of the Sith invokes this to turn the book's ending, a bit harsher than the film's, more bittersweet.
The dark is generous, and it is patient, and it always wins — but in the heart of its strength lies weakness: one lone candle is enough to hold it back.
Love is more than a candle.
Love can ignite the stars.
- Schooled in Magic: Discussed and mocked in Work Experience. Some of the ballads about Emily claim she defeated Shadye by using this, to her embarrassment, finding the idea it could work on a monster like him absurd.
- In Space Beasts, The Power of Love is what drives the plot. The Prophecy that sets the plot in motion states, "If a virgin human male loves a humanimal female with all his heart and he loses his virginity to her, then the universe will be altered and all intelligent beings will become equal."
- In the Star Wars Legends (Fate of the Jedi: Ascension) Jaina Invokes this for the above-mentioned events, while vouching for Ben's Sith Apprentice girlfriend, Vestara:
"I don't want to get too sentimental here, uncle Luke, but don't underestimate The Power Of Love. It's pulled two family members back from the Dark Side already. Ben's sixteen, but he's not a fool."
- In the Expanded Universe, Qui-Gon Jinn explains that love, a connection to others, is a prerequisite for becoming a Force Ghost.
- In Robert A. Heinlein's Time Enough for Love, the subject of love is debated extensively by the characters. It is Lazarus Long's opinion that love is the only thing that could make life worth living for thousands of years, and being loved can go so far as to cause complex computers to become self-aware.
- The Unexplored Summon://Blood-Sign features an unusual example where it's the Big Bad who benefits from this. At the end of the fifth volume, the White Queen is next to the love of her life, Kyousuke. An army of Unexplored-Class Materials — beings more powerful than gods, whose very nature is to seal the Queen's power — is approaching with the intention of killing her, and Kyousuke would undoubtedly be killed in the crossfire. But the Queen manages to defeat them all, while ensuring that not a single attack hits Kyousuke.
- Uprooted: Used alongside powerful magic to purify people of the Wood's corruption, which traps their minds in torment and uses their bodies as Meat Puppets. The magic finds their minds, but they break free by reaching out to someone for whom they feel strong, mutual love.
- In Warm Bodies, the power of love brings a zombie back to life.
- In Warrior Cats, one of the usual gifts a leader is imbued with while receiving their nine lives is love — usually of the sort a mother has for her kits, which is described as being unexpectedly fiercely strong. In Tallstar's Revenge Daisytail even says during the ceremony that there is no power stronger than love.
- In The Wheel of Time, The Chosen One becomes more and more nihilistic and self-destructive as a result of the memories of his past life, when he was driven mad and killed his entire family. What brings him back from the brink?
Why? Rand thought with wonder. Because each time we live, we get to love again. ... If I live again, then she might as well!
- Wind and Sparks cycle by Alexey Pehov is a rather cynical Dark Fantasy full of subversions, yet the trope is played surprisingly straight. The greatest magician in history wrote a lot about how powerful love is, but nothing about how to harness that power. Probably he never did. The heroes studying his papers discard that bit as useless. Yet they unwittingly manage to use it several times. Only in the end the Physical God explains everything to the narrator protagonist Ness. To properly teach all sides of magic "spark" the first teacher has to strongly and sincerely love somebody. Ginora loved her stepdaughter to the point of shortening her life to save her, Layen loved Ness and frequently risked her life for him, Shen started teaching Rona after they fell in love... this also applies to the Big Bads before their Start of Darkness. Later they grew too bitter, wallowing in their grievances too much, and the sparks they kindled were flawed, if not outright dark.
- The Witcher: In The Last Wish Geralt notes that true love has magical power. In the book's various vignettes two curses are broken by it.
- In Andre Norton's Witch World novel Year of the Unicorn, Gillian's love inspires Herrel to take on the rest of the Were-Riders.
- A Double Subversion in Wizard's First Rule. The subversion is in Kahlan's power which uses a person's love to make them a slave to her will. This completely destroys a person, with no possibility of reversal, and causes her to be hated and feared, despite being the de facto ruler of the land. The double subversion comes in the climax, where Richard's love for Kahlan protects him from her power, allowing them to get together.
- In A Wrinkle in Time, Meg is able to save her little brother Charles Wallace from being possessed by IT through the power of her love for him. She suspects that if anyone ever offered love to IT, IT would shrivel up and die.
- Subverted in the Glass Hammer song Junkyard Angel
- Huey Lewis and the News on the Back to the Future soundtrack had a song called "The Power of Love."
- Country singer Charley Pride had one of his last major hits with 1984's "The Power of Love," a No. 9 hit late that summer.
- Alive with the Glory of Love, by Say Anything. About the singer's grandparents surviving the Holocaust to be together again.
- Played straight in Nightwish's Ghost Love Score, essentially a ballad about two lovers who separate and reunite, but amped-up to insanely epic power metal proportions. Epic Love Maneuver!
- JAM Project's GONG. I GET THE POWER OF LOVE!
- Rozalla's "Faith". 'Cause you've gotta have faith ♪ In the power of love ♪ You've gotta have faith ♪ In the power of love ♪
- The Beatles' "All You Need Is Love":'And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make'
- Much of what Céline Dion has sung, including one song with the Trope Name. A running theme is that love grants the (figurative) power of flight. "Because You Loved Me" has "you gave me wings and made me fly / you touched my hand, I could touch the sky". The French track "En Amour" is all about love and flight. "Where Does My Heart Beat Now" has the line "Two hearts that need one another / Give me wings to fly." Other examples include the obscure "Love Lights the World", and of course "The Power of Love" with its bridge "The sound of your heart beating made it clear suddenly / The feeling that I can't go on is light years away."
- Frankie Goes To Hollywood and their video celebration of the Nativity.
- ''Unstoppable'', by Rascal Flatts.
- The parson from Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of The War of the Worlds has something to say referring to this trope:
"What kind of weapon is love when it comes to the fight?And what use are good and mercy, against all Satan's might?"
- Through the Barricades by Spandau Ballet suggests this trope as a means of overcoming divisions caused by The Troubles.
- Amy Grant -- "That's What Love Is For." Round off the edges, talk us down from the ledges...
- Harry and the Potters' third album is titled "Harry and the Potters and the Power of Love" which is entirely based upon Half-Blood Prince.
- In the Ayreon album "The Human Equation", one of the main 'characters' is the human emotion of love (It Makes Sense in Context). There is a Track called "Day 11: Love." and Love is one of the major themes of the album.
"You'll find me here, when ever they oppose you, I am the strongest of them all."
- Hayden Panettiere sings about it in the song "I Still Believe" from Cinderella III: A Twist in Time. In the music video, Hayden's love for her boyfriend adds color to a black and white world like Pleasantville. The bridges note this
Love can make miracles, change everything
Lift you from the darkness and make your heart sing
Love is forever, when you fall
It's the greatest power of all
- Aaron Lines' "Love Changes Everything" is a series of vignettes in how the power of love changes people who are feeling down.
- Carrie Underwood, "So Small": "And when you figure out love is all that matters after all / It sure makes everything else seem so small".
- "If You've Got Love" by John Michael Montgomery:
If you've got love, you can move a mountain
A little further down the line
You can move it all at once or one rock at a time
You can turn an ordinary picture into a priceless work of art
That's what you can do if you've got love in your heart
- One of Blue Öyster Cult's most well-known songs, Don't Fear the Reaper, is about how true love can transcend even death.
- This shows up in the song "Ten Pound Hammer", written by Dennis Linde and recorded by both Aaron Tippin and Barbara Mandrell:
If somebody would've told me
One woman could hold me
And leave me weak as a baby
I'd have told 'em they were crazy
You see, love hit me like a ten pound hammer
A ten pound hammer with a five foot swing...
- Also from the pen of Dennis Linde is Don Williams' "Then It's Love":
Well, if it knocks you off your feet, then it's love, then it's love
If it makes your life complete, then it's love, then it's love
If it turns you upside down, then it's love, then it's love
If it makes your world go 'round, then it's love
- "Immortal" by Marina & the Diamonds says that love is the only thing that transcends death and the end of the world.
- "From the Ground Up" by Dan + Shay is about a relationship that the narrator hopes will still be around 65 years from the present.
- "Levitate" by Imelda May is another song that uses metaphors of physical power to describe the intensity of romantic love. "I levitate towards you/And the way that you move..."
- The Bible:
- In The Four Gospels, John stated that God is love, and whoever does not love does not know God.
- Book of Corinthians has a verse that talks about the divine love, or Agape that is God's love towards His children, and the love of His children between each other. You'll probably recognize it; the verse is now a stock reading at weddings.
"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails."
- The Hone-onna or Bone-Woman of Japan are ghosts driven by love to remain in the world of the living, rather than hate and revenge like other onryo ("vengeful ghosts"). The problem is that while their spirit remains so does the disgusting, rotting corpse they once had. The create a sort of Glamour to the object of her love and drains him of his life so they can be together in death. The disguise doesn't work if she's not after you, so it can be disconcerting at the least to see one's master flirting with a walking corpse. Her problem is her love comes off as a selfish sort of love; when she is found out she becomes desperate and the more desperate she becomes the more her "lover" drains away until he dies or is nearly-dead.
- The Adventure Zone: Balance: Taako lampshades this by asking up front if the seventh Grand Relic was love the whole time. As it turns out, the power of strong emotions (including love) does exist. Certain inexplicable magical phenomena that the party has witnessed like Hurley healing Sloane of an incurable poison are because strong emotion is an energy unto itself like light, heat, and magic that can affect the physical and arcane worlds. The lich elves that run Wonderland are using this to sustain themselves and keep from descending into insanity by siphoning off the misery and suffering of those around them. Barry and Lup's love for each other and the rest of the IPRE sustains their lich forms. And the Starblaster's bond engine allows Tres Horny Boys to summon loved ones to help defeat The Final John in their final battle against the Hunger.
- Brother Love: Parodied, inverted, subverted and averted with Bruce Pritchard's gimmick of a smarmy, rosy-cheeked faux preacher. Many times, he claimed to preach "The Book of Love," but it was more a "love" of the WWF's top villians of the late 1980s and early 1990s, including Ted DiBiase and André the Giant, and showing the "power of love" by setting up good guys such as Hulk Hogan for beatings by the heels.
- In Ars Magica, true love cannot be affected by magic, due to being an integral part of the person. The same goes for other passions that run just as deep.
- The ANIMa from Bliss Stage create a Humongous Mecha and its weapons entirely out of, as Word of God has it, "weaponized love." Most stats revolve around relationships with the other PCs.
- In the Classic and New World of Darkness:
- Fetches in Changeling: The Lost are Artificial Humans created by The Fair Folk out of trash and shadow-stuff to replace the humans they kidnap. Consequently they are almost always sterile and their offspring tend to be soulless monsters; the only exception is when a fetch who believes itself to be human has a child with someone they sincerely love.
- Most Classic World of Darkness systems have a merit called True Love for strong romantic, familial or platonic ties. Its effect usually translates to some more Heroic Willpower when fighting for said love. True Loves in Wraith: The Oblivion can serve as a fetter for the Wraith to enter the physical world, provide emotional sustenance, and inspire Heroic Willpower for possibly the most powerful asset the Wraith has.
- Vampire: The Requiem suggests that regular contact with a mortal who sincerely loves the vampire should stabilize the vampire emotionally, helping them resist the Sanity Slippage and Frenzy to which the undead are vulnerable.
- Princess: The Hopeful: The Court Of Swords is all about this trope. Princesses of Swords can use their magic more cheaply when either blessing or defending those they love, several of their Charms create flames whose heat is proportionate to the love they feel, and other Sword Charms can detect, renew, or even create True Love. Note that it doesn't have to be romantic love, any of The Four Loves will work.
- In Dungeons & Dragons:
- 4th-Edition deities associated with love can grant this power, which focuses on protecting and healing allies.
- The infamous third-party 3.5 sourcebook The Book of Erotic Fantasy has a more easily-accessible version of the Resurrection spell. The somatic component is kissing the recently deceased, and it only works on someone who you love.
- The Virtue of Compassion in Exalted.
- Subverted, however, with Black Claw Style, which is based around the premise that love is a lie. The capstone Charm allows you to rip people's hearts out, and becomes much more powerful if your target happens to be in love with you.
- Also subverted with Sidereal Charm Shun the Smiling Lady, a charm whose sole utility is to make the target unlovable and make anyone who once loved them fall out of it. This is an entry level power, so many Sidereals just pick it up as a prerequisite to other charms. Then it's just sitting in your panoply, ready to be used at any time...
- One of the most powerful examples: if an Abyssal Exalted finds and truly cares for their Lunar Mate, almost all of the drawbacks of their state are blown away.
- Magic: The Gathering
- The game compares The Power Of Love to the power of rhinos.
Love is like a rhino, short-sighted and hasty; if it cannot find a way, it will make a way.
- While Red is the color of all manner of passions and feelings, for practical reasons, the main ones displayed on cards are variants on Unstoppable Rage and The Power of Hate. So it was considered a wonderful step forward in increasing the depth of the color when a card was successfully made about undoing a painful knot of sorrow and pain with rekindled familial love.
- The game compares The Power Of Love to the power of rhinos.
- Warhammer 40,000 has the Imperium of Man, the biggest faction in the crapsack universe, and it runs on the Power of Love for the God-Emperor of All Mankind, who never wanted to be a god in the first place, but in his own words "wanted the best for his people". It's also his massive willpower born from love for Mankind that has allowed him to keep the Chaos rift at Terra closed and the Astronomican galactic beacon lit despite getting reduced to an undying corpse. That, and the sacrifice of a thousand souls every day so he can endure such a hellish state.
- You can see how much he actually cared about Mankind as a whole on the quote attributed to him on the creation of the Grey Knights, his ultimate weapon against the forces of Chaos:
The Emperor: One unbreakable shield against the coming darkness, One last blade forged in defiance of fate, Let them be my legacy to the galaxy I conquered, And my final gift to the species I failed.
- Imperial Saints' dedication to the Emperor and acts of Faith in his name actually have managed to save the day for the Imperium on more than a few occasions when all seemed lost. This is actually a game mechanic for some factions, which allow the player to pull the imperial equivalent to some warp powers.
- Disturbingly, Nurgle the Chaos god of disease runs on a different kind of love: stuff like a mother desperate to save her child from sickness and Friend to All Living Things (someone has to be a friend to plague rats, bacteria and the like) powers him. He's the nicest of Chaos gods, often referred to without irony as Grandfather Nurgle, and is always happy to shower his children with gifts of pestilence and decay.
- You can see how much he actually cared about Mankind as a whole on the quote attributed to him on the creation of the Grey Knights, his ultimate weapon against the forces of Chaos:
- In Brigadoon, Tommy asks if "a stranger like... well... me" could choose to stay in Brigadoon. Mr. Lundie replies: "A stranger can stay if he loves someone here — not jus' Brigadoon, mind ye — but someone in Brigadoon enough to want to give up everythin' an' stay with that person. Which is how it should be. 'Cause after all, lad, if ye love someone deeply, anythin' is possible." Fiona comments, "I think I like that part best," clearly anticipating the show's happy ending.
- Richard Wagner's version of the Flying Dutchman trope allows the character — traditionally cursed to sail forever, to be saved by the power of love.
- In Damn Yankees, Joe manages to thwart the devil partly because of his unswerving fidelity to his wife. He spends the final scene cuddling up to her while she sings to him and ignoring Applegate's increasingly desperate pleas for him to renew their deal.
- One way of looking at the end of Hamlet is that Gertrude has cottoned on to Claudius's plan and drinks the poison to reveal his plan and save Hamlet. If so, this is the only time in the play she puts her son before anyone, including Claudius.
- Possibly the grandest and most edifying theme of Les Misérables is that this trope is indeed the answer to the evils and suffering of the world. Fantine and Éponine's final words as they escort Valjean to the afterlife:
"Take my hand, I'll lead you to salvation.
Take my love, for love is everlasting.
And remember the truth that once was spoken:
To love another person is to see the face of God."
- Surprising, given the style of the play, but in the final scene of RENT, death is converted to Disney Death by a love song.
- In the DLC case of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Spirit of Justice, Phoenix argues that a witness was able to arrive at the scene of the crime far sooner than should be possible due to the power of love. Specifically, he saw his bride being attacked and hurried to the crime scene. The normal route would take too long so he took a much shorter and much more dangerous route in spite of a serious injury. Edgeworth mocks the idea, but is shut down by the (happily married) judge, and when the final witness confirms that this actually happened, he's more than a little bewildered.
- This is, ultimately, what the web animated series Broken Saints is all about, and what drives its Earn Your Happy Ending.
Mama Tui: All things must die, Shandala. We cannot change this. But you can bring the heavens to your heart in life. Give yourself to those that need. If you do this, then the world is truly blessed... for it has known your love.
- In Draw with Me, this is what compels the boy to break through the glass, and later the girl to cut off her hand.
- Hilariously mentioned and subverted in And Shine Heaven Now after Marian (a parody of the Mary Sue trope) attacks the I-Jin of Jeeves and musses up his hair, which he points out is unlikely:
Marian: It's not unlikely at all. You're an enemy of Integra. So there's no way you can beat me. Because I have the most powerful thing in the universe on my side — the power of true love!
iJeeves: Indeed. [slices Marian in to pieces] As a tactic, it leaves something to be desired.
- In this Beaver and Steve story arc, love comes from another dimension populated with evil hearts that want to take over the earth.
- According to Buttersafe, "love is the source of energy that fuels eye lasers."
- Used in this Captain SNES: The Game Masta strip. The power of love and friendship helps win a fight.
- Cucumber Quest: Love plays an important role in the climax of Chapter 3. Sir Carrot starts seeing himself as The Load for being a total coward, thinking that he's useless to his friends and Princess Parfait. But when he finally reads the Love Letter that he lost to the Guardener, he learns that he's the reason why Parfait continues to endure her captivity, which causes him to gain his courage and level up. Parfait powering Carrot with her love and faith through their lockets takes it further and transforms Carrot's hodgepodge knight uniform into a shiny suit of heart-themed armor that grants him the ability to use magic weapons. All this is what allowed him to stand a chance against a Hocus Crocus-powered Rosemaster.
- Used and nicely summed up in the final part of Demonology 101, when Isaac Jenner and Madeline get married. Two Witnesses attend the wedding and one comments on the Power Of Love.
- Chloe in Eerie Cuties, being a succubus and all that can enjoy it... very much... to Glowing Eyes and Dramatic Wind.
- 8-Bit Theater: Subverted in this strip, where Black Mage explains that his Hadoken spell isn't so much powered by love as with love, in that it siphons some love out of the universe every time it is cast. Black Mage himself isn't sure how much, but he's given to understand the divorce rate ticks upwards with each blast. Also, he got the spell by sacrificing nine orphans to a god of evil.
- Girl Genius: Apparently it's enough to make Agatha wrest control of her body away from the soul of her evil and (literally) possessive mother. Well, that's what it looks like anyway.
- Girly has loads of this throughout the series, but especially in the final arc, where all the artificial sidekicks explode when exposed to love (except for the sidekick cops, who are armored against love). Half the enemies are taken out by a sex god and his ex-wife, while the other half (including the sidekick cops) are dealt with by a pair of real cops through a combination of Clothing Damage and dirty dancing. The protagonists defeat the Final Boss by having hot, steamy lesbian sex next to her.
- The Gunnerkrigg Court interlude comic City Face is described by its author as "a story of how love can save the world." It turns out pigeon love and the resulting pigeon babies prevent humanity from bringing about The End of the World as We Know It.
- In Homestuck, Noble Wolf Bec's love for Jade is so strong that when he sacrifices his body to save her and inadvertently imbues the Big Bad with his own strength and form, said Big Bad is tormented by the feelings of loyalty that were transferred, and can not bring himself to kill Jade when he finds her. As of the End of Act 5 flash, he killed the Courtyard Droll in an act of vengeance, and then laid Jade on her Quest Bed after CD managed to kill her in an explosion.
- As with many things, the exact nature and significance of love in the comic is ambiguous, but magical girls appear to draw their power from it, and it's widely known to be a force to be reckoned with:
Largo: Dude, I'm battlin' zombies and all I got is luv pow3r from a n3wb magical grrl. Help me out here.
Clerk: All ya got? That's enough, mate.
- The power of obsessive adoration, meanwhile, is a separate matter altogether, albeit possibly connected.
- As with many things, the exact nature and significance of love in the comic is ambiguous, but magical girls appear to draw their power from it, and it's widely known to be a force to be reckoned with:
- The Order of the Stick:
- Haley becomes able to pick a lock when Elan encourages her.
Vaarsuvius: Love makes the world go round. And has been known to provide a +2 circumstance bonus to certain skill checks.
- The time when Haley had started speaking gibberish and breaks out of it when she tells Elan she loves him. She had been honestly trying to tell the truth and overcome her mental problem for some time, but finally managed it when her cynicism told her that Elan was going to leave her "just like everyone else" if she didn't recover right now.
- Haley becomes able to pick a lock when Elan encourages her.
- In The Red Star, Maya talks of how once you have true love, you never lose the effect of it.
- In Sinfest, the power of love can even withstand concentrated efforts to stop it.
- In YU+ME: dream , Fiona's decision to attempt to go back into the Dream World to find Lia, especially considering Sadako had banned Fiona from the Dream Land, as well as the possibility that Fiona may never return to the real world if she finds Lia.
- In Yumi's Cells, the Love Cell has a special pink costume and is the most powerful of all Yumi's brain cells. Unfortunately, it was De Powered and put into a coma after a break-up a few years before the story begins. It starts recovering as Yumi finds (potential) new romance.
- JLA Watchtower/DC Nation — the Titans, led by Arsenal and Nightwing, challenge Hades, God of Death, to retrieve Omen and Troia. Hades plays dirty including killing off both Dick and Roy, and finishes it off by sending out a zombie horde against the heroes. Clan Arrow's response was to grab Eros's love arrows and start shooting. When things really started to go badly, out comes an army of the heroes' fallen friends, relatives, and loved ones — including the fallen Nightwing and Arsenal — to start kicking undead butt.
- In the Colour My Series, it's implied that the protagonist's coloring powers are based off of love. Or, rather, the two go hand in hand.
- In Critical Role, apparently even the Random Number God bends to the power of love. In this universe, by the Dungeon Master's homebrew rules, the resurrection of dead characters can fail based on dice rolls, and anyone attempting a resurrection ritual can make up to three offerings (with associated skill checks) to increase the chance of success. When Percy is killed, Vex admits she's in love with him and kisses him. She rolls a Natural 20 on her skill check, and the ritual ultimately succeeds.
- In Mall Fight, Eric brings Connor back to life with this trope.
- Frank and Sadie Doyle of the The Thrilling Adventure Hour have conquered a fair share of supernatural baddies through the power of their love. A Valentine's Day special dedicated to them featured the Doyles blowing up a succubus after it tried to devour their love, attracting the attention of Freya and Bacchus because an oracle declared their love the strongest of all, and thwarting a Will o' the Wisp from stealing their souls before it even started by the simple fact that their souls belong to each other.
- In one of the possible endings of Today I Die, love gives the protagonist strength to survive.
- Supervillainess Sahar, in the Whateley Universe. She has a psychic ability to — once she's seduced a Psi — get so close that she can learn to copy that Psi's best 'knacks'. This makes her a ruthless femme fatale, until she falls in love with a mark, Zenith. She doesn't know how to handle that. So it takes a different kind of love — friendship — to get her to finish her HeelFace Turn. And she gets Zenith back.
- Adventure Time:
- In "Mortal Folly", Finn defeats the Lich the first time with a sweater imbued with the Power of L-L-Liking-Someone-A-Lot.
- Deconstructed with and exploited by Maja the Sky Witch. She gains most of her powers through love, namely items that hold a lot of sentimental value to people... but it's also reconstructed in that while she herself understands what love is and manipulates it to her own ends, some entities that she tries to use for her own purpose, such as Darren, don't. This bites her in the butt.
- In Aladdin: The Series "Sandswitch" episode, Sadira switched places with Jasmine with a memory spell in order to make Aladdin hers. However, love was too strong for Sadira's spell as Jasmine and Aladdin love for each other was too strong. In addition, the Sultan's love for Jasmine was also too powerful for the spell.
- The two part episode "The Origins" from The Amazing World of Gumball uses this as an explanation of how Darwin got his lungs and legs; Put simply, Gumball and Darwin are connected by their souls with an unbreakable bond of friendship, and it was Gumball's love and faith in Darwin being able to return to Elmore after accidentally being flushed that caused him to undergo several million years worth of evolution in a few days at most.
- Jake and Rose from American Dragon: Jake Long. Jake wished that Rose was never taken by the Huntsclan, but then she remembers everything when she sees the photo of her and Jake from a dance.
- In Beast Wars, Blackarachnia defected from the Predacons to save her own skidplate, but the power of hers and Silverbolt's love brought her to the Maximals and made her part of the team, despite her initial reluctance. Since Blackarachnia was the Dark Action Girl for most of the series, this is slow going, but eventually, it does bring her around. Later, she's Mostly Dead until Silverbolt winds up facing the uber-powerful Rampage... at which point she's brought back to life in a new form and kicks Rampage to the curb, which is not an easy task.
- In the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "Mayhem of the Music Meister!", the titular villain uses his voice to hypnotize people into submission. When AQUAMAN holds Black Canary (immune to the power of the Music Meister's voice thanks to earplugs) so Green Arrow can punch her, his feeling for her prove so strong that he's able to shake off the Mind Control for long enough to hit AQUAMAN instead.
- Used in one episode of the Beetlejuice cartoon, when BJ and Lydia's car Doomie falls in love with another car. Doomie is a Sentient Vehicle, but Pinky is not, making the romance difficult to say the least. But by the end of the episode, the trope is invoked in two ways. Doomie's love for Pinky actually causes her to become a Sentient Vehicle. Less overtly, Beetlejuice's own affection for Doomie (and Lydia) overcomes his annoyance about the whole thing.
- In Billy and Mandy's Big Boogey Adventure, Irwin uses this to save Mandy when she is kidnapped by the Boogeyman. Lampshaded when Grim said that it was "the power of love."
- In the Brave Starr episode "Who Am I?", Bravestarr had his memory blocked through a spell cast by Vipra. However, through the advice of the Shaman, Bravestarr uses this trope, although it also took the bond of friendship, to break the spell and get his memory back, due to those strong feelings being more powerful then magic.
- Ma-Ti of Captain Planet had "heart" as his element, considered to be a warped version of this, which garnered a lot of ridicule for how little and ineffectively it was used, as well as how ridiculously it was named. However, it is actually an awesome power, probably the best when you think about it. He has mind-control and the ability to summon potentially deadly animals as his powers, which he could use for very mischievous purposes if he wasn't so kind-hearted. Fun fact: in German dub, his power was Liebe, which translates to "love". Gotta love these language differences.
- Clone High had a whole episode parodying this trope as well as the power of rock. During the climactic scene where they tried breaking down the wall with love, one of the characters said, "But guys, love is just an abstract concept! It can't break down stuff!"
- At the end of the third season of The Dragon Prince Callum Rayla, who fell from a high mountain, jumps behind. He tries to cast a spell twice to turn his arms into wings and it doesn't work. Only when he remembers that he loves Rayla does the spell work the third time. Even better, it's such a complicated spell that very few Skywing elves can master it. And Callum, a human boy, did it.
- DuckTales (2017)
- Donald Duck is able to channel his temper through the love he has for his nephews, and uses as a strength to defend them or anyone close to him.
- Della Duck spent a decade stranded on the moon in almost complete isolation, except for a giant moon mite and (for the final several months) moonlanders for company. The one thing that kept her from giving into despair and going insane was the thought of getting home to her children.
- In an episode of El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera, Zebra Donkey dies but is brought back as a zombie when Manny and Frida steal Sartana's mystic guitar. Sartana eventually takes it back and tries to destroy Manny for stealing it. Zebra Donkey manages to get his hooves on it and destroys it, knowing full well doing so will destroy him as well. Manny, Frida and the rest of the kids gather around Zebra Donkey's ashes and the pieces of the mystic guitar and tearfully sing his theme song as Manny plucks one of the guitar's strings. Zebra Donkey is returned to life... or, undeath, rather.
Frida: It must have been this guitar string!
Principal: And the love of you children.
Frida: Yeah. But mostly the guitar string.
- Evil Con Carne:
- In the episode "H.C.C.B.D.D.", Major Doctor Ghastly reveals during Hector's birthday party that the most powerful force in the world is the power of love. When he objects that his organization was founded on hatred, she promptly cuts the party short and screams at everybody to get back to work with as much hate as possible... 'cause she just loves him like that.
- Another example where she does this is in the Musical Episode "The Pie that Loved Me", as the Evil Plan involves pies that have love as the "secret ingredient". (The plan doesn't work, but Ghastly still tried.)
- The Fairly OddParents. Very frequently throughout the series, love seems to be the one thing that is more powerful than the fairies' magic:
- In Wishology Trilogy, the Darkness is defeated because Timmy realizes it just wants to be loved, so he uses Poof's warmth and innocence to turn it into the Kindness.
- In one episode, Timmy wishes to have parents that couldn't care less. The spell works too well, and the only way Timmy is able to undo it is to put himself in danger, causing his parents' love for him to cancel out the magic.
- In a different episode, Timmy breaks one of the fairies' biggest rules and has everything undone, then has his memory of his fairy family erased. Cosmo and Wanda also have their memory of Poof erased as well. However, due to being done with magic, Timmy's love for his fairy family and his fairy godparents' love for their child is powerful enough to undo the effects.
- Subverted with the actual one of "Da Rules" saying "Magic can't interfere with true love". This is indirectly revealed to not be a physical limitation of magic but rather purely a cold bureaucratic rule with some rather loose definitions, as even when it's patently obvious that said "true love" is unhealthy, shallow, materialistic, or even one-sided, Cosmo and Wanda still aren't allowed to cast any spells that would interfere with it.
- Used in the animated special Freaknik: The Musical, the love of the fans help revive Freaknik as well as give him a handy Combined Energy Attack. It's in the book.
- Parodied in the episode "Love and Rocket", which features a very literal power of love: when a whole load of chalky Valentines heart-shaped candies are dumped into a supernova, it causes a wave of "mystical love radiation" that is powerful enough to destroy "three gangster planets and a cowboy world", but causes (or at least enhances) a wave of Valentines-inspired romance on Earth (which is far enough to see the radiation without being destroyed by it).
- Also parodied in the episode "T: The Terrestrial", featuring bicycles on Omicron Persei 8 that are powered by love. At one point, Lrr tells his guards to "love harder".
- Kif also once gave Amy a watch that was powered by love... also you have to wind it.
- Gravity Falls: Parodied in "Dipper vs. Manliness", when Mabel offers to help Stan hook up with Lazy Susan, a waitress at Greasy's Diner.
Mabel: Grunkle Stan, you are a cranky, gross, weird old man, but we will get Lazy Susan to like you because nothing is stronger than the power of—
- He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983):
- In "Orko's Favorite Uncle", Orko's uncle Montork was brought to Eternia by Tauron, then was put under his control through a spell. However, Orko express how much he loved Montrok, which was strong enough to break the spell that was controlling him.
- In "The Return of Orko's Uncle", Orko tried to help his uncle by going on his own to handle Azrog and Spydra but could't defeat them then was put under a spell to make him evil. However, Montrok reminded Orko how much he and everyone one around him love him, which got to him break free from the evil wizards spell.
- Kim Possible:
- Ron Stoppable got his Chunky Updraft in the Grand Finale because the aliens grabbed an unconscious Kim and gloated that she'd be a great trophy.
- It could also be said that it was this that inspired Kim to fight back at the climax of Kim Possible Movie: So the Drama after discovering her Romantic False Lead was a synthodrone and losing herself, only for Ron to reveal how he felt about her.
- When Link's spirit is severed from his body in an episode of the 80's The Legend of Zelda cartoon, Zelda is the only one who can see his spirit because of this.
- This is how Lilo & Stitch: The Series ends. After a suddenly-failed rescue mission lead by Lilo to save all of the experiments Gantu captured, Stitch confesses his feelings to Angel, who responds by breaking open her container with a headbutt and feeling the same way towards him. Together, they smash open the other experiments' containers with their heads and free them. All of the experiments, save for 625, are now free and are to be given new designations and names.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
- This is played with in the Season 2 finale, "A Canterlot Wedding", when it turns out that the villain, Queen Chrysalis, has been powering herself up by siphoning love off of Shining Armor while disguised as Princess Cadence. It later bites her in the ass in the end of the episode when Twilight Sparkle frees the real Princess Cadence, allowing the latter to reunite with Shining Armor and use that same love to defeat Chrysalis.
- Later weaponized in the Season 6 finale, "To Where and Back Again". Chrysalis tries to execute Thorax by forcibly draining him of all his love, making him an example of what happens to those who betray the hive. Starlight Glimmer encourages Thorax to "give her all of it!" instead, which leads to Thorax love-blasting Chrysalis and transforming into a majestic Changeling King. The other Changelings follow suit and subsequently turn into colorful beetle-like creatures, showing that love is more beneficial when mutually shared instead of taken and exploited.
- In the cartoon pilot, PJ Sparkles is transformed into a Magical Girl due to her strong desire to love someone, and can do almost anything, provided she phrases it "I'd love it if X."
- The title characters in Robotman and Friends are robots powered by human love, requiring it to stay alive. Without love they lose power and become tired and physically weak.
- Played interestingly in 'The Powerpuff Girls episode "Knock It Off". The villain, Dick Hardly, is slowly killing the girls. Professor Utonium, unable to stop him and being dragged away by the deformed Powerpuff Girl clones, can only tell his girls he loves them. The clones, realizing that Dick never gave them love, turn on him and free the Professor and the girls.
- The Christmas Special Raggedy Ann and Andy in the Great Santa Claus Caper has a particularly sappy variant of this: the power of love (combined with some gratuitous Audience Participation) not only dissolves the Big Bad's Gloopstik, but convinces him to have a HeelFace Turn.
- In the Grand Finale of Samurai Jack Jack's Anguished Declaration of Love is what finally helps Ashi break free of Aku's control.
- Inverted in an episode of Super Secret Secret Squirrel, where the titular protagonist overcomes Queen Bea's love potion with the power of hate.
- She-Ra: Princess of Power:
- In the beginning, Adora was under Shadow Weaver's spell for most of her life in order to make her serve the Horde. When Adam/He-Man arrived in Etheria, Adora, despite just meeting him and believed that he was the enemy at first, felt a connection with him. However, through the Sorceress, Adora discovers that the connection with Adam/He-Man was love when she finds out that he's her twin brother and instantly believed it. Seeing her brother in trouble, Adora newfound love for Adam/He-Man was powerful enough to break Shadow Weaver's spell over her for good, although it also took her strong will power.
- In "The Greatest Magic", Orko is able to communicate telepathically with his girlfriend Dree Elle and then channel his magical powers into her to help her escape imprisonment, even though she was trapped in an Anti-Magic field that would normally make this impossible. Orko's uncle Montork explains this was done through their love, because love is the greatest magic.
- In "A Lesson In Love", Kevin is able to break free from Shadow Weaver's mind control when he sees his crush Flutterina in danger.
- In the 2018 reboot, She-Ra and the Princesses of Power, Hordak overcomes his lifelong indoctrination and two mind wipes due to his love for Entrapta. In "Heart, Part 2", when Horde Prime orders Hordak to kill Entrapta, Hordak disobeys and attacks Horde Prime instead.
- Exaggerated in The Simpsons episode "Marge vs. SSCCTG", where Bart and Lisa make the childless adults love children by simply hugging them (in a Shout-Out to The War of the Worlds). Then subverted when the love fails to change their minds, whereas the sudden exposure to child bacteria and viruses cause them all to collapse. Again referencing The War of the Worlds.
- In the Grand Finale of Sofia the First, Vor has Sofia cornered inside the Amulet of Avalor; but Sofia witnesses the spirits of the Disney Princesses who helped her throughout her journey and encourage her to fight back. She focuses all her love for her family and friends, channeling a magic that explodes outward and obliterates Vor's essence for good.
- This is essentially how Spider-Man defeats Venom in the season 1 finale of The Spectacular Spider Man: with the love of his friends, uncle, and aunt.
- In the series finale of Star vs. the Forces of Evil, after Star destroys the Realm of Magic, which will cut off inter-dimensional travel and send everybody to their home dimension permanently (meaning she'll be on Mewni and Marco will be on Earth), her and Marco's love for each other caused the last of the magic to fuse Earth and Mewni into a single world so that they can still be together..
- Steven Universe:
- It may not be be entirely necessary for the Gems' Fusion Dance to work, but it does make the fusion much more stable, as evidenced by Garnet. As soon as she reforms, she defeats Jasper while singing a Badass Boast song about how "I am made of love and it's stronger than you." This trope is also probably the reason Stevonnie was formed in the first place.
- Garnet also suggests that this is the source of Steven and Rose Quartz's powers, which makes sense for such All Loving Heroes.
- In Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!, Sprx is turned evil by the Object of Hate, and Nova tells him she loves him to bring him back.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012):
- The only things that helps Raph from letting his anger get too out of control is the love he has for his family, friends, Spike/Slash and Chompy. Also, in "The Evil of Dregg", Raph used his feelings for Mona Lisa to fight back against Lord Dregg when she confesses her love for him.
- Karai quickly bonded with Splinter when she found out that he was really her biological father. After been accidentally mutated into a mindless snake in "Vengeance is Mine", Karai's love for Splinter helped her maintain control of her humanity and even saved him from drowning in "The Invasion" when he was beaten by the Shredder.
- The titular character of Wander over Yonder heavily believes in this, as quoted in "The Egg." Creator Craig McCracken has stated that the dynamic in the series is not so much a battle of Good Vs. Evil as it is Love Vs. Hate.
- In the Winx Club, Sky uses his words of love to bring Bloom back to the good side and have her return the ultimate power to its rightful place in the Season 2 finale. Lord Darkar doesn't take that well. At all.
- Yin Yang Yo!: Much to Yang's annoyance, many of his Woo Foo techniques are powered by, or at least better when used by, love. He only mastered the Paws of Pain by remembering how much he loves Yin, and his Color Coded Emotion for love turned out to be building sized.
- The Sacred Band of Thebes.
- Mary Ann Patten the wife of the Captain of the Clipper Neptune's Car, got the ship around the Horn propelled by this.
- An underweight failing newborn was saved by a hug from her tiny twin sister in this unspeakably adorable story from 1995.
- Similar to the above, there's the concept of "Kangaroo Care", where a baby is held closely to the mother's chest. Babies born prematurely or with low birth weight that are given this treatment tend to become healthy faster than those kept in incubators.
- The Castle of the Faithful Wives, thought this one crosses strongly with Guile Hero. To sum it up: A group of woman are allowed safe passage during a war out of enemy territory with whatever they could carry, they chose to leave with their families doing a piggie ride.
- Love, romantic or otherwise, is often considered one of the most powerful motivational forces in the human psyche. There are even claims that it can cause the brain to release chemicals that allows a person to accomplish things that he/she could not or would not have been able to normally do. These factors are the basis for the "Power of Love" in fiction.