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Morality Chain / Western Animation

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  • Finn is the protagonist of Adventure Time, but it's strongly implied that he's also the Morality Chain to several different people. It gradually becomes apparent that without him Princess Bubblegum would be much more of a Totalitarian Utilitarian, Marceline would actually be the psychopathic troll that she likes to depict herself as, Jake would be an even worse Kleptomaniac Hero, and Ice King would be doing a lot worse to Princesses than just trying to kidnap them occasionally.
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  • A scene at the end of Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker suggests that The Joker was an Anti-Morality Chain for Harley Quinn. Return of the Joker shows that the Joker was killed, and Harley presumed dead; of course she wasn't, and reappears to scold her twin granddaughters for joining the Jokerz gang.
  • Lydia is both this and the Kid with the Leash for Beetlejuice.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy: To an extent, Edd is this to the other two Eds.
  • On Jimmy Two-Shoes it's implied that the sweet optimistic Jimmy is this to the sadistic girl genius Heloise considering that she has a crush on him, only acts nice around him, and (barely) tolerates Beezy and Cerbee because of Jimmy. (Although even Jimmy is not safe from her rage and wrath at times). It's also been stated that the main reason she fell for him is because there's "something about sweet, innocent guys that appeals to the last shred of humanity in her". Suffice to say, if Jimmy were to disappear somehow Heloise would probably immediately revert from Chaotic Neutral to Chaotic Evil, have no reason to be nice to anyone at all, and lose that last shred of human compassion she has that she only brings out around Jimmy.
  • Lampshaded in Justice League Unlimited. When the original seven heroes discuss their worries over sliding down the slippery totalitarian slope like their Bad Future counterparts, Flash cheerfully points out that he's the team's Morality Chain, so all they've got to do is make sure he stays alive and everything's cool. The rest of the team is not impressed. He turns out to be right: there's an Alternate Universe in which Flash died at the hands of Luthor... and the main heroes become the ruthless Justice Lords.
    • Further, the drastic expansion of the League was partly this; when Green Arrow just about leads a coup against the founding-seven because a large number of the members felt they were starting to abuse their powers (not to mention that they just revealed the Watchtower doubled as a Kill Sat), they're thanked and reminded that half the reason that the more Badass Normal heroes and the ones more in-tune with the life on the street are there to keep the borderline-Physical God heroes down to earth, on top of being amazing (and often underrated) heroes in their own right.
    • Batman wanted Green Arrow on the League specifically because he would help the main seven and more powerful members to remain grounded.
    • In "Fearful Symmetry", The Question concludes that Galatea wants the original Supergirl dead because their Psychic Link works both ways. While Supergirl was beginning to fear she was a killer, Galatea was developing a conscience as a result of her 'dreams' of her counterpart. To test this, Question challenges Galatea to kill him. While Supergirl's intervention prevents us getting a clear answer, Galatea's moment of hesitation is the one example we get of her having any reluctance to kill.
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  • When Newton the Centaur assists The Mighty Hercules out of a spot, he'll usually chirp "What would you do without me, Herc?"
  • Discord, from My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has one from Season 3 onwards in the form of Fluttershy, who, after she reformed him by befriending him, threatens to revoke her friendship with him to get him back on course if he seems to be going too far. It extends so far that when everyone save Discord, Starlight Glimmer, Trixie and Thorax is captured by the changelings, the one pony Discord wants to save is Fluttershy.
  • The Ren & Stimpy Show: Stimpy to Ren, to an extent — we can't be sure due to cases of Depending on the Writer.
  • Chuckie is this to Tommy, Phil, and Lil on occasion in Rugrats, particularly when they are being led astray by Angelica. In "Rebel Without a Teddy Bear" Chuckie's vocal intervention is the only thing that keeps Tommy from becoming as much of a mean-spirited hellion as Angelica.
    • Other episodes like "The Gold Rush" and "Chuckie's Wonderful Life" strongly hint that Chuckie is this to the other babies as well.
  • Ahsoka Tano can be seen as this to Anakin in Star Wars: The Clone Wars in addition to Padme. Having her as his padawan teaches Anakin some responsibility and she helps to reign in Anakin's rashness and bold tendencies when Obi-Wan is not around. At the same time, it's also shown it's during moments when she's in the most danger that Anakin comes the closest to using the Dark Side in his efforts to keep her safe. Her being framed for a crime she didn't commit and eventually leaving the Jedi Order just helps push him faster down the dark path as shown in Revenge of the Sith, and even as Darth Vader he still has more compassion for her than almost anyone else save for Luke himself, given how he offered to spare her life in Star Wars Rebels if she gave him information on any remaining Jedi and even hesitated during their fight.
  • Sugilite of Steven Universe is a fusion of Garnet and Amethyst, so the end result is incredibly powerful... and completely out of control, as she has Garnet's pride and Amethyst's wild nature. Nevertheless, she is still a fusion of Gems who deeply care about Steven himself, so she's surprisingly rather chill with him.
  • In an episode of Superman: The Animated Series, Lois Lane ends up in a parallel universe, where her double was killed by a car bomb. While in her own reality, Superman got there just in time to save her, this world's Superman failed and has never forgiven himself. Since then, he has become much less forgiving to criminals and abandoned his "no killing" rule, blasting any criminal he sees with his Eye Beams. When Lois encounters this version of Superman, he no longer wears the same uniform and appears to be working with Lex Luthor. She manages to set him right, though. Of course, she goes back to her own universe at the end of the episode, which means the other Superman is once again without a Morality Chain.
  • In Teen Titans, Starfire is thrown into a temporal vortex in the episode "How Long Is Forever?". She lands in a world where she's been lost for several years, and it turns out that the Titans were so dispirited and sad after her disappearance, that they have been disbanded and haven't seen each other for years. BB is a freak show in a circus, Raven went the maddened into misanthropy way, Cyborg has spent years alone in the remains of the Titans Tower, and only Robin (now Nightwing) remains as a crimefighter.
    • Also, Starfire was actually very near a Despair Event Horizon of her own prior to bumping into Nightwing. That gives her the courage to keep fighting, which ultimately lets her return home and to her own time and avert this Bad Future.
  • Young Justice gives this trope a dark twist in the episode "Secrets:" the psychopathic villain Harm realized that his sister Greta was the only person keeping him from being "pure," and murdered her.
    • Invoked in the second season, when Impulse decides to become Blue Beetle's to keep him from destroying the Earth.
  • Wander over Yonder plays this trope straight with Destructor. His morality chain is a sock puppet. His father threw it away at a young age so he turned evil and imprisoned everyone. Presumably years later, Wander and Sylvia return the sock and he immediately releases everyone and makes them dukes in his kingdom.
  • In Castlevania (2017), Dracula falls in love with the human Lisa who aspires to be a doctor. After the Church has her burned at the stake for "witchcraft", Dracula summons an army from Hell to Kill All Humans. More than once Dracula called his wife the one thing that made him tolerate humanity.


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