We know your weakness, our rockin' sauce!
We rock the casbah, and blow your mind!
We will defeat you, for all mankind!
You hold the scepter, we hold the key!
You are the devil, we are the D!"
Yes, for some reason, music is the most capable form of creative expression when it comes to defeating the forces of evil. The battle often takes the form of a rock concert or music video. That in itself helps to explain why it's almost always music that saves the world. It'd take a very imaginative writer/director to defeat the villain with the power of Symbolism, also known as Modern Expressionism.
Incidentally, it's only "The Power of Rock" because 99 percent of the time rock is the musical genre of choice for this trope. Rock tends to be loud and theatrical, and therefore more powerful. As the examples below show, other kinds of music work too.
Can also refer to the many, many works of fiction in which characters fight for their right to rock (or party, or dance, or whatever as long as it involves music). Expect any video game involving musicians to have the "rocking heroes fight Culture Police" plot.
Note: Not to be confused with Musical Assassin. This trope involves actual music playing that the audience can appreciate, not just characters playing instruments with the sonic power to kick ass. There are few game examples of The Power Of Rock outside of music-based games.
Compare Loud of War, Care-Bear Stare, The Power of Love, The Power of Friendship, Autobots, Rock Out!, A Little Something We Call "Rock and Roll", Great Balls of Fire, Brown Note, Rock Me, Asmodeus!, Make Me Wanna Shout, Clap Your Hands If You Believe, Awesome Music. Contrast Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll. May be presented as a form of Cool and Unusual Punishment.
Not to be confused with Rocks With Powers, or Rocks That Grant Powers, Power Over Rocks or Music With Rocks In. Possibly beaten by The Power of Paper, though the Power of Scissors hasn't made its appearance. This is also not the kind of rock that is poor and predictable, or Rachmaninoff.
- Anime and Manga
- Comic Books
- Fan Works
- Films Live-Action
- Live-Action TV
- Tabletop Games
- Video Games
- Web Comics
- Western Animation
- Real Life
- Magic: The Gathering has this with older enchantments' "verse counters", and with other cards like Glorious Anthem (and its green counterpart, Gaea's Anthem), Joraga Bard, Hymn to Tourach, and the like. Mostly music is seen as healing or inspiring others to go on. And yes, there was a Lotus Cobra is Evil cartoon about the Mirran-aligned planeswalkers forming a band because Mirrodin is a plane of metal.
- Shrek the Third, when Snow White unleashes the power of Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song", causing the forest animals to attack the Huorns guarding the city gates.
- The Spongebob Squarepants Movie involves SpongeBob singing a "Twisted Sister" parody, all the while saving the citizens of Bikini Bottom from Plankton's control with his guitar.
- Rockin' with Judy Jetson, one of the made-for-television films of The Jetsons, has a Big Bad who is trying to destroy all music in the galaxy because she hates it so much. Even mentioning the word "music" causes her to have epileptic seizures. Naturally, Judy and her friends defeat the plan with rock music which causes the villain to have the aforementioned seizures which in turn causes her to accidentally sabotage her own space station.
- The climax of Rock Dog has Bodi using Magic Music to peacefully subdue the wolves who have been trying to attack the residents of Sheep Mountain.
- In Rock And Rule, a certain song has the power to summon a demon from another dimension and send it back.
- Greek Mythology:
- Orpheus, who had music to soothe the savage beast. And trees and rocks. And Hades himself. But not the Maenads, unfortunately for him.
- It's also worth noting that there are, canonically, precisely three ways for a seafarer to escape the sirens' song. The first two, as seen in The Odyssey, are to stuff your ears with wax so you can't hear the song or be tied up so you can't go to them. The other, as seen in Jason and the Argonauts, is to bring along Orpheus and have him tune up his lyre and sing, enchanting the sirens themselves into shutting up and just listening.
- In Finnish folklore, Väinämöinen creates the first Kantele and his singing and playing is magically powerful and beautiful, such that he can charm the beast and birds. In fact, one of the most famous scenes of the Kalevala is the song battle between Väinämöinen and Joukahainen. When angered by the arrogance of the latter, he sings songs so powerful that lakes swelled up and mountains trembled. With his song he then turned Joukahainen's sled runners into saplings, turned his horse and dog into stone, turned his sword into a lightning bolt and crossbow into a rainbow, and far more. This, of course, led to the younger hero admitting defeat to keep from dying.
- In The Book of Joshua, the walls of Jericho fall after the Israelites march around the city for seven days blowing horns, "rock music" being Older Than Feudalism. The Clash referenced this in their songs "Jericho" and "The Sound of Sinners".
- We Will Rock You! If you've guessed that the protagonists fight an oppressive government using the music of Queen, you win a cookie.
- The Big Bad of the show, Killer Queen, was defeated by having the band play an instrumental version of Tie Your Mother Down.
- The lovable gang in RENT brings Mimi back from death by HIV, exposure and drugs through the power of song.
- In Sam Shepard's Tooth of Crime, apparently the primary form of entertainment in the future is watching cowboy/rock star/gangsters fight each other using rock's power.
- Played with in the Global Guardians PBEM Universe: The hero team 4Justice is a quartet of young superhuman singer/dancers who won their place on the team by way of the "reality" TV game show "Who Wants to Be a Superhero". To date, they've not actually appeared in the field fighting crime, but have released four albums, had a nationwide tour, and a TV movie. While each member of the band has a "code name", they are all much better known by their real names among their fans (who are all tween- and teen-aged girls, apparently). Outside of their fans, they receive little respect from the hero community, and not much more respect from the musical community.
- The music video for Lindsey Stirling's "Moon Trance". There are not many places (internet or otherwise) where you can see a violin-wielding girl duking it out with breakdancing zombies on electric keyboards and drums.
- SCP Foundation:
- SCP-1987-J. A piece of sheet music which can be played, irrespective of any known ability to play the guitar or lack thereof, by anyone who knows how it is supposed to sound and has access to an electric guitar and amp (playing on any other instrument causes mild revulsion in onlookers). Playing causes apparently permanent effects, from the player simply appearing more attractive; through the spontaneous manifestation of various stage effects; vehicles in the area of effect being polymorphed into classic hot rods or muscle cars, motorcycles becoming custom bikes; female observers being regressed to around 18 years old, with 68% of cases also experiencing transmogrification of clothing into lingerie, G-string bikinis and leather fetish gear; manifestation of female 18-year-olds if none are present, as well as large quantities of alchohol, dinosaurs, dragons and female angels; resurrection or reanimation of nearby corpses; spontaneous pregnancies... However if played too long, a being known as SCP-1987-J-1 will appear, and demand you stop playing or challenge him to a guitar duel he calls an "Epic Rockdown of Rocktimate Rockstiny" for the title of "ultimate Rockness". Noone knows what that is, as noone has won, and the penalty for failure is being polymorphed into a middle-aged guy named Earl who works in a garage. These are now being classified as D-class, as there are far more of them than is needed for the site's motor pool.
- SCP-298, on the other hand, is a pipe organ which will literally drive the blood right out of your body.
- In The Onion article "Clinton Threatens To Drop Da Bomb On Iraq," George Clinton threatens to "tear the roof off Baghdad" and liberate uptight Iraqi asses with the Power of Funk. The Mothership, 5,000 bop gunners and 2,500 Aquaboogie Amphibious Assault units are prepared for deployment.
- The Remarkable Journey of Higgins von Higgings: Higgins von Higgings! Your incredible journey ends TODAY!!
- The Real Trailer, Fake Movie April Fool's day prank from IGN re-imaged Mass Effect as a circa 1986 animated series. And yes, this was how they destroyed the Reapers. Queue more than a few Better Than Canon jokes.