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Took A Level In Badass / Fan Works

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The Avengers (2012)

  • In Redeemers Assemble, multiple characters do this. Ultron rips his old body in half with his new one to threaten Attuma, flies headfirst into an orbital strike, and almost dies to boot, and Abomination lifts the city of New York to stop it from sinking.

Battlestar Galactica (2003)

  • In Did I Make the Most of Loving You?, after Adama is reassigned to the Galactica in the new timeline, Roslin uses her political contacts to have Galactica undergo a thorough rebuild to repair the damage and material flaws that compromised the battlestar towards the end of the series, as well as providing it with raptor training sims, under the guise of wanting it to be perfect before its conversion into a museum.


  • Pretty much everyone in A Protector's Pride. Some notably stand outs include Sadou managing to injure Ulquiorra in his resurreccion, Ichigo defeating Grimmjow without using his mask, and Orhime killing Barragan.

Bridge to Terabithia

  • Bridge to Terabithia 2: The Last Time: Jess Aarons, full-stop. After Leslie Burke's funeral, Jess holds on to his father's advice to "live life to the fullest, despite whatever it throws at you", so he did by starting to socialize more, and changing his persona completely. In the few years that follows as Jess becomes a teenager, he started working out, took boxing lessons, got his motorcycle license, become one of the most popular teens in school, and subsequently turning into a Chick Magnet due to his "bad-boy" persona. In the process however, he also become a teen rebel with tendencies of behaving like an asshole to his parents, refusing to come home and regularly spends his nights either with his girlfriend or equally popular peers. And then five years later, he discovers that Leslie Burke is actually still alive...

Calvin and Hobbes


The Chronicles of Narnia

  • "Across the Worlds" opens with Narnia and the various human allies being attacked by a powerful Darkness, with Aslan only given enough time to summon Susan (ignored by the enemy's first assault as her current lack of belief meant she wasn't seen as a threat) and four other allies to her, instructing them that they must travel across the worlds and defeat the Darkness in each world before confronting it in its home dimension. In one world where time flows at a faster rate compared to the other worlds, Susan and her allies remain for a year to train, preparing themselves to face the future threats with greater experience.


  • Comes up often in Avengers of the Ring series;
    • In Return of the Avengers and Dagor Arnediad, Tony Stark forges new armor enhanced with mithril.
    • In Methteilien, Faramir begins training in the use of the Hulkbuster armour so that he can join the Avengers in the hunt for Thanos and Morgoth. Later, Banner/Hulk realises that, after absorbing extra energy on Sakaar, he is now capable of releasing energy blasts once he has reached a certain critical mass of power. After the Time Skip, Gimli and Legolas are shown wearing vibranium armour while assisting the Avengers in the field.
  • Avengers: Infinite Wars;
    • At least discussed in Chapter 25, when Rhodey, Scott and Hope contemplate integrating new metals into their suits to increase their resistance to blasters and lightsabers; by Chapter 42, Sam Wilson's wings have been augmented so that he can use them to shield clone troopers from droid blasts.
    • In Chapter 49, Scott and Hope reveal a set of fighters they have modified with Pym particles so that the clone troopers can use them as a surprise weapon.
    • On the villain's side, Ultron has given himself a force field that can deflect lightsabers, and is shown retrieving lightsabers from his defeated enemies with the intention of studying them for his own use later.
    • Celeste Morne and Wanda Maximoff each receive training in new ways of using their powers, as Celeste becomes a student of the Ancient One while Wanda receives lesson in using the Force and lightsabre combat, each able to adapt their existing powers in new ways.
    • His time on Mortis sees Peter Parker discover and bond with a symbiote, giving him enhanced strength and the ability to manifest tendrils from the suit.
  • In the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic/Back to the Future crossover fic Back To Equestria, Marty learns magic.
  • The Back to the Future/ X-Men Film Series crossover "BTTX" opens with Doc revealing that he is a mutant with the ability to manipulate electromagnetic energy; while he mainly relies on external energies, he can summon a lightning bolt during a storm or negate Magneto's powers in a confrontation. Later on, Marty learns that he is also a mutant, his powers allowing him to stop time.
  • Applies heavily in The Big Four Cjupsher Series
    • Limelight can fly, can shake off a building falling on her without a scratch, can lift over 400 tons and can heal people afflicted with dark magic. In fact, Merida, Anna, Elsa and over half of the other Disney princesses present in this world can kick EVERYBODY'S ass.
    • Hiccup is the leader of the Big Four, is a mechanics expert, is the smartest member of the team and has a prosthetic foot from an accident when he was younger.
  • In the Chance Encounter series, Paris, Helen and Briseis, the former becoming a skilled archer, the latter two being skilled swordswomen, and Balian takes a subtle one, picking up a bunch of new moves from the Fellowship and moving more smoothly in battle, going from ordinary Badass Normal levels to, while under mind control and what could be considered a Superpowered Evil Side, fighting Legolas, who is considered to be the hallmark of badassery in the series, to a standstill.
  • In Child of the Storm, everyone seems to have taken one. Everyone is closer to comics power levels, Thor and Loki most noticeably, Clint only has the real life Legolas to compete with him for the title of best shot in the Nine Realms and Tony is stated to have curbstomped Volstagg in an offscreen sparring match (mitigating factor: Volstagg held back because he wasn't sure how tough Tony was in his armour) and Fury is stated to be the reason Lucius Malfoy walks with a limp and a walking stick.
    • The Winter Soldier, already a badass, has become The Dreaded, a terrifying One-Man Army. Previous feats include one shotting a former Captain Britain (granted, with a high powered rifle and a special bullet) and mowing through two squads of Europe's finest Aurors. On screen, he's killed a Nundu (takes 100 Wizards to subdue) and a Chimera without taking a scratch or even slowing down, mows through a number of extremely well trained soldiers, including a two second take down of James fucking Bond, tears through MI13, takes on Black Widow, Hawkeye and Captain America at once and wins, taking the first two out with a booby trap and ends up almost beating Cap to death with his own shield, kills an enhanced werewolf the size of a car with his bare hands, then carrying Carol Danvers down a treacherous mountain in a ferocious storm before she got frostbite. He justly earns both Loki's assessment as possibly the deadliest assassin in the Nine Realms and the comparisons to immortal assassin, Jared 'The Hellhound' Kincaid.
      • In chapter 70, he takes on, in succession, a couple of dozen or so Aurors and Ministry personnel in an assault on the Ministry itself, a couple of dozen SHIELD Agents on the Helicarrier, Captain America, Black Widow and Hawkeye at the same time on the now sinking Helicarrier, multiple Secret Service Agents in an assault on the White House, and Wolverine - the latter in a Knife Fight, while carrying multiple broken ribs. And he does this while holding back to spare as many people as possible.
    • Malfoy is the reason Fury only has one eye, and is currently coordinating an alliance between HYDRA, a necromancer called Gravemoss and the Death Eaters, organising the theft of the Turin Shroud as a distraction from the theft of the Darkhold from one of the highest security vaults on the planet, systematically having MI6 and MI13, the paranormal security service destroyed, and when one of these does not go according to plan, he reminds Baron Von Strucker who's boss, then leaves SHIELD and other security services to take out less competent Death Eaters, distracting their attention from him and granting him control of the finances of the deceased Death Eaters. He then removes Von Strucker, takes control of the Winter Soldier, and with him, HYDRA, before developing into a bona fide Evil Overlord by chapter 74, having neutralised the Avengers, crippled SHIELD, stolen multiple tons of Vibranium and sauntered into the UN to extract the surrender of the world, backed up by a now Vibranium hulled teleporting Helicarrier. While the backlash the following chapter is epic, there's no denying that he's badass.
    • Harry. Oh, Harry. Within a year of linear time (his body and mind are separated for six additional months in the Nevernever), he goes from shell-shocked 13 year old Action Survivor and incipient Guile Hero, to high end Person of Mass Destruction with vast Psychic Powers, Super Soldier level physical abilities, and the combat skills of the Winter Soldier, with a developing capacity for Xanatos Speed Chess, and the Phoenix Force on call. However, the latter makes him an unwilling Apocalypse Maiden, and the road taken to gain all these levels in badass leaves him hideously traumatised, and scarred both physically and mentally.
    • All of the kids take a level or several dozen over the first two books: Diana goes from being able to fly somewhat with some Super Strength to being able to one-shot a demon of the sort that previously took an orbital strike to cripple, let alone kill, Uhtred goes from an Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy to a wise and thoughtful young warrior who goes axe to claws with Grey Court Master Vampire in the form of a gigantic bear that had the Winter Soldier worried and winning, Jean-Paul goes from Fragile Speedster to a ruthless version of the Flash and Spear Counterpart to the Black Widow, while Carol goes from ordinary teenage girl to - temporarily - the Green Lantern, a right she earned by being too stubborn to die, and more generally distinguishes herself with her skills as The Strategist and abilities as a Super Soldier (coming from a temporary enhancement that stuck because she's Steve's great-granddaughter). How? By being alongside all the others, who are even more powerful thanks to a Plot-Relevant Age-Up in chapter 59 of the first book, and nevertheless being considered the main threat by the Winter Soldier himself.
  • Children of an Elder God: The three pilots take levels constantly: every time they kill an Eldritch Abomination they steal its power, and their bodies evolve to adapt to their enemies. So, every battle they grow more powerful.
  • The Chronicles of the Fellowship;
    • Frodo joins Sam in mounting an assault on a goblin fortress in Moria to rescue Lucy, when he never really got the chance to do any fighting on his own in the original media.
    • Aslan suggests that Lucy’s purpose in Middle-Earth was to experience this, encouraging her to grow in physical strength and be more willing to stand up for herself.
  • In The Confectionary Chronicles, Hermione starts Hogwarts in a significantly stronger position than in canon, where she had a good overall knowledge of magical theory but naturally limited practical abilities, as well as not being comfortable thinking on her feet. After spending the better part of four years as the priestess and protégé of a pagan trickster god who has given her all kinds of lessons and opportunities that even pure-blood students don’t have, Hermione starts Hogwarts with such skill that she's even able to defeat three fourth-year Slytherin students single-handedly in her first month.
  • The Naruto/Justice League Crossover Connecting the Dots does this to most of the Konoha 11, but especially to Tenten. You remember Tenten? Trust me. Not this one.
  • Equestria Girls: A Fairly Odd Friendship: Thanks to Rainbow and Gilda's training, Timmy gradually becomes more athletic. However, his athletic prowess is limited to fighting people his age and size. He is completely outclassed by grownups, and has to rely on trickery to be able to battle them.
  • The Simpsons/Futurama crossover Fast Forward has pretty much all the main characters of either show take major levels in badass (with the exception of Leela, given she was pretty badass to begin with), due to Bender gaining a weaponry upgrade and the human characters (and Zoidberg) gaining a Farnsworth-made upgrade: their own customized, stylish, suit of Powered Armour.
  • In "Harry Potter and the Key of Dagon", Dawn receives training in magic at Hogwarts after the Scoobies learn that Ginny has become a Slayer as a result of the mass activation spell, while Harry gets some training from Willow in turn.
  • Shaak Ti rises to the rank of Jedi Master in A Horse for the Force over a decade earlier than canon due to traveling with Ranma, who is not only a massive trouble magnet, but also spars and trains with her constantly.
  • Infinity Train: Blossoming Trail: Chloe Cerise was your average girl in her native series. But by the time she gets into the Infinity Train, she starts taking the steps to leave her past behind, wields a donut holer like she's up at bat and becomes courageous to speak her mind. It gets to the point that One-One asks her to help end the Apex once and for all.
  • By the start of Know Thyself, Harry has long-since become an official member of the Human Rebellion despite his age, joining his parents on missions into the Matrix and then acting upon the Council's best interests when the existence of the Wizarding World becomes known to them.
  • In Kyon: Big Damn Hero, due to Year Inside, Hour Outside training and applied phlebotinum, Kyon keeps taking level after level in badass. It's nearing Memetic Badass status within the story itself.
  • Last Child of Krypton:
    • At the beginning Shinji is his shy, wimpy canon self. Then he discovers that his body got modified with Kryptonian DNA and becomes Superman.
    • Asuka also took several levels when she claimed her Amazonian heritage or -depending on the version- her body got modified with Kryptonian DNA. Suffice it say, she did not got upset when she was unable to synch with her giant robot because she "can fly and bench press a cement mixer".
    • In the original version several more characters became versions of several superheroes of The DCU, ergo, more badass (for example, Touji became a Green Lantern).
  • The Dazzlings in LEGO Equestria Girls 2 (even Sonata Dusk in a way), in part from the fact that the story does not take place in a high school. Sunset Shimmer also counts.
  • In Loki and a Kleptomaniac Hogwarts gossip queen and airhead Lavender Brown. And how. Taking out a Dalek-run Death Star with only her wand and an atomic blaster is pretty darn impressive in any universe.
  • In "Lost Girl and the Lost Room", Bo (Lost Girl) already has some awareness of other strange aspects of the world after she met Joe Miller (The Lost Room), who gave her some of the Objects that she can use to control her hunger and gain various other advantages, such as using the Knife and the Watch to give herself a degree of telepathy.
  • Done literally in My Hero Playthrough, since Izuku's The Gamer power lets him see people's levels, and arrange special, live fire training in Dungeons. As a result, Izuku ends up getting first place in the entrance exam, and thanks to his help/power, Tsuyu places 7th.
  • The Night Unfurls:
  • In "The Not-So-Average Girl", Peter Petrelli (Heroes) has greater control of his powers because he’s copying the enhanced survival instinct of Kim Pierce (a renamed Kim Possible). As Kim’s ability lets her instinctively know how to survive in any dangerous situation, when Peter copies Kim's ability he has a greater natural understanding of how to use his other absorbed abilities.
  • In the Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha and Harry Potter crossover Professor Takamachi, Nanoha manages to do this with a lot of Hogwarts students through a simple means. Physical training to increase physical and magical stamina, math to increase their ability to focus and multitask better, supervise the DA by putting things into practical terms, and then organizing groups to do magical sparring together as teams in simulated combat. This pays off when the Hogwarts students organize and decimate a Death Eater attack on Hogwarts. It is also hinted that Harry and his group put up a much better fight in the Department of Mysteries.
  • Jaune Arc takes one at the start of (and takes a second level throughout) the RWBY/The Hobbit/The Lord of the Ringsnote  Fusion Fic Rise of a Star Knight, and its sequel Knights of Remnant: The Ring of Darkness. He starts as an Idiot Hero and the Butt-Monkey, unlocks his inherited Star Knight powersnote , gets trained by his older sister, Carolina Arc, who teaches him how to fight and how to use his new powers, and is the one that the rest of the heroes choose to lead them (over Ruby, Qrow, and Coco). Also, as the Star Knight of Vale, he has a private army, the Sky Knights of Vale, lead by his aforementioned older sister. By the end of the first story, he's killed Smaug and Cinder. In the second story, he kills Locus
  • Resurgence Series;
    • Bella Swan goes from always needing others to save her to standing up to villains like Arthur Petrelli and Sylar on her own, when her only power is basically an immunity to some powers and the ability to shut down other peoples’ powers with a concentrated effort
    • From a certain perspective, this also applies to Peter; while he never gets Brought Down to Normal like he was in the show and retains his original ‘rolodex’ of abilities, he learns to be more intelligent in the use of his powers.
  • Applies heavily in ROTBTFD Star Wars Series
    • Hiccup is made into a Jedi Knight, having hid away all of these years since the order fell. While he has not tamed a dragon like his canon counterpart, Hiccup is one of the most skilled fighters in the series, having created his own Jedi martial art called "The Book of Dragons", basing every kick-ass technique off of a different dragon that dwelled on his home planet.
    • Elsa is made into a Jedi Knight, both as a competent fighter and master of what is called "Force Ice", a parallel to the dark side's Force Lightning and her ice magic in the film.
    • Anna is made into a pretend Mandalorian searching for her big sister. Not convinced that the Order betrayed the public like everyone else, Anna set out to find her. Along the way, she acquired a Mandalorian outfit, a gun and the skills to use it (if not a little ''too'' well, to be completely honest). To top it all off, Elsa says that she was able to find her by using the force unconsciously, but turns down her offer of Jedi training, happy with her own set of skills as is.
    • Despite being a padawan, Rapunzel is an incredibly competent fighter and is fluent in the Force, being able to use it to heal injuries.
    • Not only does Dagur retain all of the deranged, battle-crazy demeanor and skills from his canon incarnation, but he is now a god-damn Sith Lord named "Darth Skrill" with mastery over the force, is handy with a light-saber and the amoral temperament to threaten the entire universe with it.
    • If Drago Bludvist was not scary enough, now he is now a Sith Lord and the Emperor, ruler of the Empire and conqueror of planets.
  • The Secret Keeper starts with the revelation that Bella Swan is actually a witch whose social issues are just because she's out of place in a muggle school after spending six years at Hogwarts. On top of her existing magical talents, Bella decides to focus on becoming an animagus in her seventh year after Voldemort's defeat. Not only does she achieve a transformation into a lion, but visions of her future transformation into a vampire reveal that not only will she then be able to windlessly cast spells that hide her from Edward when she’s right in front of him, but will retain her lion form after the change, her new state being so powerful that she will be able to break the current land-speed record.
  • The Secret Return of Alex Mack: Grover Dun, aka Klar. When first introduced, he's a scared kid who's stuck invisible. Then he gets professional training and some invisible equipment and goes on a bunch of SRI missions where he stares death in the face. A hundred chapters later, he's running vital intelligence through military no-man's-land and impressing STARS officer Jill Valentine in combat.
  • Superwomen of Eva 2: Lone Heir of Krypton: Asuka trained her whole life to become a fighter and Humongous Mecha pilot. Then she developed strange powers and found out about her Kryptonian heritage. She went from beating giant aliens with her Humongous Mecha to rip them apart with her bare fists.
  • The Star Wars/Star Trek crossover series "Stars Ablaze Episode 1- Destinies Entwined" opens with R2-D2 being briefly ‘abducted’ by V’Ger (Star Trek: The Motion Picture) and given an upgrade that allows him to conduct repairs by converting matter to energy and back again. As well as this new ability, R2 is now able to alter his own structure to the extent that he can communicate in actual spoken language after integrating a Starfleet universal translator into his system. He also receives a great deal of knowledge from V’Ger, to the extent that he is aware of various ways of travelling through space, his new knowledge making him eligible to apply for asylum with the Federation (as rules on droids in his home galaxy would have risked him being dismantled to try and duplicate him if he remained there).
  • In "Sufficiently Advanced Technology", Batman, Nightwing and Robin (Tim Drake) all learn how to use magic just a few months after learning about the existence of Hogwarts, and even speculate that magic is a lot easier to learn than even the wizards believe (which prompts Nightwing in particular to observe that they have to be careful that the Joker doesn't learn the Killing Curse).
  • Thousand Shinji: In the original series, the main characters were humans with average abilities. Here, Shinji becomes a sorcerer with psychic powers and fulgurkinesis, Asuka a Super Soldier and Rei a Plaguemaster.
  • After her suit is destroyed and she's gravely injured in Silly but Killy, Tali is given Limm Goo and Fightin Juice to possibly save her life. As a result, she becomes part Ork.
  • While in The Wizard in the Shadows, Harry has mostly done his levelling offscreen by the time the story starts, it is quite something to contrast the already badass Boy-Who-Lived to what he is after four years trapped in Middle Earth in the run up to the War of the Ring: an absurdly - by human standards - fast knife expert, an extremely powerful wizard who is more than willing to kill and capable of going toe to toe with the Nazgul - he actively hunts them, and The Dreaded for everything evil in Middle Earth for very good reason, whispered of as 'The Black Wizard'. As noted by the author, this is largely justified by the Kill or be Killed nature of late Third Age Middle-Earth.
    • He takes further levels in badass, wielding the Sword of Gryffindor in battle, fending off an army of Dementors (admittedly, he was possessed for that part) after singlehandedly holding an Entropy Ward over all of Helm's Deep for over two hours against continuous assaults from the Uruk-Hai, then destroys a fifth of them by taking command of the storm and raining down lightning. And he was only drawing on outside power to a great extent with the Dementor part. He later takes on Wraith Voldemort, who is present as a balance to the Tenth Walker in a swordfight on the back of a fell beast. Among other acts of obscene badassery.
    • Just about every character in the series: Boromir and Aragorn each singlehandedly take down one of Sauron's Olog-Hai (uber-trolls) without taking a scratch. Ginny unleashes hell on the Morannon in the form of three firestorm tornadoes (with outside assistance). Ron and Hermione develop into capable sword fighters. Emrys goes from Punch-Clock Villain Mook who, after a Heel–Face Turn (debatable since he wasn't at all personally evil in the first place) becomes a Badass Normal who kills a (distracted) troll solo, and eventually becomes - at the Black Gate - a part Ainur Empowered Badass Normal who swats trolls like flies. By the sequel, it is vaguely hinted that he can fly, or at least defy gravity, and can move in Super Speed.
  • In the Worm/The Wonderful 101 altpower crossover Wonderful (Mazinja), thanks to Taylor's suits increasing strength, speed... many characters become badasses (Emma goes from being an average girl to smashing a tank with a mop) or increase their badassery (Sophia).
  • XCOM: RWBY Within manages the rare feat of combining this trope with Brought Down to Normal. When Team RWBY are stranded in the world of XCOM: Enemy Unknown, they discover to their initial consternation that their Aura and Semblances are non-functional... But their training and experience haven't gone away. It doesn't take them long to adjust, and Ruby in particular gets significant Character Development: Knowing that a single mistake could cost herself or a squadmate their life forces her to learn caution and patience.

Danny Phantom

  • Sam in the Facing the Future Series. True, she was probably one of the most badass characters in the show, but here, she ups the ante.


  • Here There Be Monsters. Normally, Ibac is already powerful enough to give Captain Marvel a run for his money, but Doctor Sivana's gadgets have magnified his already considerable might.
    Captain Marvel reeled back from the punches delivered by Ibac and the Acrobat. They actually hurt. That was incredible.
    Ibac, certainly, had the power to injure him. He was about as close to a Shazam-powered being as his evil patron could make him. But he seemed more powerful this time. At least Cap's equal, seemingly... possibly more. The Acrobat had been no more than a human criminal, one of Captain Marvel, Jr.'s foes, who turned into a crazed killer beneath the full moon. Now, here he was, surviving unaided in outer space and trading punches with the World's Mightiest Mortal himself.

Demon King Daimao

  • Keena Soga, of course, in Keena & the Defendants of Constan Magic Academy, who now no longer is forced to stay out of the way in the battle, takes tons of hits, still gets back up and doesn't even need help to defeat her opponents, even if she hurts them in quite brutal ways.


  • After the events of Omni-Tamer, Takato becomes the strongest Tamer by far. Unfortunately for him, the one person whose respect and praise he truly desires instead becomes aggressive and spiteful to him out of jealousy, forcing Takato to finally snap.

Dragon Age

  • Dragon Age: The Crown of Thorns has given levels in badass to more than just the dwarven noble Wise Prince protagonist, plus some antagonists (the Sloth Demon, Piotin Aeducan, the Fade Beast-it becomes a rock wraith, etc.)
    • Raonar Aeducan goes from Cultured Warrior / Guile Hero to Cultured Badass / Magic Knight / Barrier Warrior;
    • Faren Brosca, the dwarven commoner rises from Lovable Rogue / Action Survivor to straight-out Action Hero / Badass Adorable with almost complete hostile magic immunity.
    • Kallian Tabris, the city elf, also a Lovable Rogue, finds herself forced to drink Avernus' alchemical potion, making her blood poisonous to darkspawn (and she can even read their attack intentions like some sort of battle precognition). Lady of War indeed.
    • Alim started out as a One-Man Army blood mage but eventually learned shapeshifting and telepathy. He also seems to avoid the Squishy Wizard trope altogether, though mostly through timely applications of forcefields. One can only wonder what will happen if he ever becomes an Arcane Warrior too.
    • Alistair didn't get many special powers, but Raonar's tutoring did yield a much higher level of self-confidence, actually making him lose a level in suck. A Magic Knight in his own right.
    • Theron Mahariel and Gwenith Cousland can still qualify as Badass Normal members, but it is unlikely that the story will end without them also getting some sort of powerup. One might say it is required, considering what happened in the latest chapters (The Archdemon became smarter and more self-aware, possibly able and mentally coherent enough to use blood magic).
    • Even Trian Aeducan seems to have gone through this after his memorable Break the Haughty several months-long period of being presumed dead after having his death faked against his will (and forced into being roomies with Gorim.

Dragon Ball

  • In Legend of the Monkey God, both Goku and Bulma learn how to transform from Oolong and Goku teaches Bulma how to access her ki. Then Bulma wishes to become a Saiyan.

The Fairly OddParents

  • In Never Had a Friend Like Me, Bob the boil has gone from just the sentient boil on Elmer's face that he was in the show to an Eldritch Abomination that intends to take over the world and change it to how he wants it to be.
  • In The All New Fairly OddParents!, Vicky and Tootie's parents, who both have been Pushover Parents in the past, have evolved into this thanks to therapy sessions with Dr. Phyllis Fancyfree, and since then, they don't take any nonsense from their daughter Vicky.
    • Same goes for Vicky's little sister Tootie, although to a lesser extent.

Fairy Tail

  • Alternate Tail Series:
    • Levy actually starts weaker in canon, having to initially need a pen to use her Solid-Script up until the Phantom Lord arc, where she performed one-handed magic to help Gajeel regain his strength. But she becomes stronger later in the series, using stone tablets obtained from Galuna Island to unlock a Lost Magic called Holy Scriopture that is basically the angel version of Freed's Dark Ectriture.
    • Following the Edolas Arc, Pantherlily starts to use the same Stave Magic that Mystogan uses more openly.

Final Fantasy

  • Luso in The Tainted Grimoire, after learning how to draw his aura and then again after being given the ability to channel Mist.

Fruits Basket

  • Tohru Honda — no, really— Tohru Honda gets this treatment in the Western AU fic The Swordsman & The Gunslinger. On the surface, she appears to be a sweet but she can hold her own in a fight. Even a person who knows her very well is amazed that she can handle an enemy.

Game of Thrones / A Song of Ice and Fire

  • In The North Remembers, Sansa Stark pretty much takes a level and then some. She first kills Ser Shadrich with a knife when he attempts to rape her, then manages to enlist both the Brotherhood after convincing them not to kill Sandor, and the Burned Men by willingly getting her hand burnt, to help her overthrow Littlefinger. This finally culminates with them assaulting the Eyrie whilst Sansa is being tried for murdering Sweetrobin Arryn. The end result, Sansa beating Littlefinger at his own game (along with him getting a well-deserved beatdown courtesy of Lady Stoneheart).
  • In Purple Days, Prince Joffrey Baratheon's long stretch of Character Development has him taking a level practically every chapter. Joffrey starts off as the same weak, simpering coward from canon, but resolves to grow stronger after repeated deaths at the hands of his enemies. After enduring Training from Hell from multiple teachers and leading the legions of Yi-Ti against the White Walkers, he becomes a hardened and ridiculously skilled Warrior Prince well-versed in nearly every weapon under the sun with too many badass feats to list here.
    • Sansa Stark, Joffrey's betrothed, is revealed to be Human Weapon created by the Purple just like Joffrey meant to aide him in stopping the Long Night. When she learns of this and joins him in his crusade, she demands that Joffrey train her in combat so that she won't become a liability to him. With three years of intense physical training, along with learning the ways of the Manipulative Bastards around her, she becomes Joffrey's chief confidante, smart enough to co-manage his political and economic projects and skilled enough in combat to defeat several assassins sent after her.


  • Abraxas (Hrodvitnon): Vivienne Graham ultimately goes through this over the story's first several chapters after she's brought back as half of Monster X; thanks to a severe PTSD-inducing Trauma Conga Line, being forced to kill human assholes in the form of Alan Jonah's mercs, and being pushed past her limits in more ways than one. Other characters can see the change in her eyes.
    The Vivienne Graham of old wouldn't have hurt a fly. This Vivienne Graham has killed.

Harry Potter

  • Dumbledore's Army and the Year of Darkness is all about Neville Longbottom, and the DA, levelling up in badass to the point where they're able to stand up to, and fight, Death Eaters on a nearly-equal-to-equal basis.
  • Another example is In Cold Blood, wherein Harry is asked by Gringotts to work as a freelancer assassinating Death Eaters for them. The goblins have a magical method that allows them to transplant knowledge from prisoners, so that Harry can fight well beyond the level of his targets. The fic is rather vague about how much knowledge of what Harry gains: all it states is that the first donor is a skilled enough torturer to keep a man on the edge of death for six months, and that after Harry gains the torturer's skill a "seemingly endless" number of donors file in after him, with "everything Harry could possibly use" against his victims.
  • In Furious Angels, Harry and Ginny basically acquire their future selves' knowledge of magic the summer before Ginny's first year at Hogwarts; while they don't know how they know this, they now possess a superior knowledge of magic from most of their peers, allowing Ginny to basically overpower Draco Malfoy in a duel while even casting silent spells.
  • The Power of Seven;
    • By the end of the school year, the new 'coven'- Harry, Ginny, Hermione, Luna, Demelza Robbins, Susan Bones and Katie Bell- have become skilled enough that they quickly fall into a pattern to coordinate their defence against the latest attack at Hogwarts, while Harry's magic has increased to the point that he can fly on his own which was an ability only demonstrated by Voldemort and Snape in canon.
    • After dozens of chapters of "Ron-bashing", it's Ron who formulates the plan to rescue Demelza from Malfoy Manor, though Lupin tweaked it a bit with the benefit of greater experience. Said plan goes off nearly flawlessly.
  • In "Harry gets Motivated", Harry asks Professor Moody to mind control him into relentlessly forcing himself to study to exclusion of everything except whatever Harry has to do to stay mentally and physically healthy, and to protect himself from Voldemort. This fic ends with Harry draining his bank account to further his studies, refilling it by attacking a giant vault in Malfoy Manor with his new skills, and eventually killing Voldemort so as to ensure he can study uninterrupted.

Hetalia: Axis Powers

  • In the alternate universe Hetalia: Axis Powers fanfiction, Every Generation, Canada undergoes this to free himself and America from England's smothering rule. It works. Kind of.


  • This trope is actually built into the power system of Holo-Chronicles in the form of evolved traits. While neither Coco nor Sora count for this trope themselves due to their traits evolving before the series' events (and, hell, Sora's evolved into the Purity Trait when she was just a child), Subaru is getting close to evolving hers and thus actually counting.

The Incredibles

Jackie Chan Adventures

  • In Queen of All Oni, Jade has done this, having gained increased strength in her new Shadowkhan body (and gaining a knowledge of shadow magic)]], and having put her genre savviness to good use against her former loved ones.
    • Later in the fic she plans to take MORE levels by finding three magic tablets she can use to increase her magical knowledge further.
  • The Ultimate Evil: Valerie is already somewhat badass at the start of the story, being able to fight off all three Enforcers with a broom. However, she's still out of her league, and realizes it, so she eventually asks Jackie to teach her martial arts.

Kamen Rider Fourze


  • In Trip Like I Do, Dave and Mindy run away from home and undergo near constant training at one of Mindy's safe houses. Dave becomes far more physically fit (being able to engage in Roofhopping like Mindy), fights much dirtier (due to being promised a day off if he can take her down), and is a much more skilled fighter overall.

The Legend of Zelda

  • In the original game, Prince Komali simply sits in his room, brooding. In a novelisation of the game, he goes with Link to Dragon Roost Cavern, chases down a bunch of monsters who were about to sacrifice Medli and saves Link's life. TWICE in quick succession.

Mass Effect

Marvel Universe

Miraculous Ladybug

My Hero Academia

  • While Izuku in The Norse Hero: Fenrir was impressive as he was, when All Might gives him One For All, it compliments his preexisting quirk almost as though they were meant for each other. For one thing, Izuku's transformations are much easier, capable of shifting between his human form, beast mode and Ragnarök without the needing to be threatened beforehand, and even is able to take on a "light"-mode that gives him a power boost without having to do a full transformation and waste energy. With his preexisting strength and Healing Factor, Izuku can tap into One For All's overwhelming threshold of power without breaking his limbs, though it does speed up quirk exhaustion. The power boost it gives him was enough for him to defeat All For One the first time they meet.
  • In Catching Up, Izuku's weeks spent Method Acting as various heroes gave him a lot of insight into their fighting styles. As such, when Class 1A fights Mirio, Izuku continuously changes his fighting style to keep up with him until the match is declared a draw.

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic

  • Played With for Fluttershy in Flutterspy. As we've seen in canon, Fluttershy is capable of being a great warrior, but only if one of her Berserk Buttons is pressed. Fleur de Lis' training is intended to overcome this.
  • King Sombra in The God Empress of Ponykind duels and lectures Luna into submission, taunts Celestia into killing him and then uses his death to ascend and become a Daemon Prince before pulling the Crystal Kingdom into the Warp.
  • The Immortal Game: Pretty much all of the Mane Six over the course of the story, but the crowner has to go to Fluttershy of all ponies. During the Final Battle, she somehow taps into Terra's old power as "Princess of the Forest", becoming a Physical Goddess with a flowing mane and something akin to the Royal Canterlot Voice who is able to cow the most powerful dragon alive into a Heel–Face Turn and serving as her mount in a Big Damn Heroes moment. Everyone else (both in and out of universe) is shocked at this, and even Rarity admits to being a little frightened of her.
  • Unlike the other MLP characters who are flanderized to one-note caricatures, Spike at the very least gets a transformation in the third "season" of My Brave Pony: Starfleet Magic.
  • In the Pony POV Series, its easier to list the characters who don't do this. By the end of the Princess Gaia Arc, the mane cast and Trixie are tough enough to fight a Mad God head on and hold their own. Derpy Hooves beats down the mooks of the Big Bad to protect her daughter and is an experienced Companion of the Doctor, Shining Armor is a trained military warrior who managed to fight out of a full on military ambush, Princess Cadence took out an Avatar of Havoc in the back story (though she can't remember) and is willing to put her life on the line to protect Shining, and the CMC managed to build a functioning time machine. Heck, even Celestia and Luna are complete badasses in this continuity.
    • The G1 Mane Cast get this as well, the Rainbow of Light having made them The Ageless. What do they do with it? Spend several thousand years kicking the flank of any monster who dares threaten Pony Kind. This includes managing to beat Discord in a straight up fight (though unfortunately, he managed to escape) and beating back Grogar (who in this universe also counts as this trope, being a Evil Overlord who can go toe to toe with Discord) every 500 years. Of note are Mimic, who managed to fight Discord head on and ultimately break his tooth permanently in a Dying Moment of Awesome, and Shady, who was Discord's The Dragon and ultimately redeemed herself by holding him in place for the Princesses to beat him.
    • Some of the G2 Mane cast get this, considering they end up having to survive After the End when a Class 2 apocalypse hits. Sweetheart becomes a nurse who stops a supercharged version of The Black Death and her husband Teddy goes Papa Wolf and protects his family from corporate thugs and mutations spawned by the blast. Patch is the biggest, as she goes on a quest to rebuild the Rainbow of Light, becoming an Action Girl who overthrows a number of ponies abusing the shards' power. She even manages to beat a dragon in a straight up fight and outwit and beat Grogar. Did we mention she has no special powers outside the Shards slowing down her aging?
    • Minty Pie from Dark World. When we first meet her? A normal everyday Earth Pony (though one who grew up in Discord's Crapsack World). Then she decides to go help the others in the fight with Discord. She falls into an underground cave and being hailed as The Chosen One by a race of winter spirits. By the time we meet her again, she's defeated her own Big Bad and became an experienced warrior with a Cool Sword. By the time she reaches the Final Battle with Nightmare Paradox, she dodges some fireballs with practiced grace, throwing the time travel scroll that Paradox wanted to force Twilight into using into it in the process and manages to hold her own despite being the only Badass Normal in the group.
  • The Rise of Darth Vulcan: Vulcan's apprentice, Artful Dodger, starts out as a mere street urchin crook. With training (and some magical body enhancements) from Vulcan and Chrysalis, however, and he's one of Vulcan's Co-Dragons, with a fearful reputation of his own amongst the minions.
  • Over the course of When a Pony Calls and The Alchemist's Heart, Soren/Silver Script has gone from an inexperienced teenage boy turned female pony, to holding his/her own against Twilight, to fighting monsters in the Everfree, to charging Eldritch Abominations with a shot gun in a Bad Future.


  • Dreaming of Sunshine gives us a remarkably slow evolution. Starting out, Shikako is considered a sickly child who's hypersensitivity to Chakra is anticipated to prevent her from ever becomeing a ninja. By the end of the academy, due to her relentlessly grinding levels she is one of the top kunoichi, along with Ino and Hinata and she can water-walk. By the Chunin exams she can make her own seals. By the third round of the Chunin exams, she can lay seals at a touch. the Grinding continues until ninty-five chapters in she can give Gaara a run for his money and arguably might have won if she had been going for the kill.
    • Ino, who starts out the story slightly stronger than her canon counterpart, suffers serious injuries after fighting the Sound Four, and then recovers and becomes a much stronger, more versatile fighter with the aid of her chameleon summons.
  • In Blind, due to one failed recon mission (that was VERY important) Naruto, Gaara, Hinata and Shino take levels during the time skip. Naruto and Gaara had to due to being declared missing nin with kill on site orders in KUMO where they are hunted like dogs EVERYDAY so they had to toughen up or die. Hinata because of throwing herself in training due to heartbreak (Naruto didn't tell her about the mission and ends up as a missing nin so she takes it hard. Doubly so because they are betrothed) to the point where she can take Neji down in a fair fight. Shino because of anger at his friends being traitors (Naruto and Gaara) and one giving in to depression (Hinata).
  • Future Sakura in Naruto Mysterious Power, who manages to defeat over half of the main cast, went from being nothing but the main antagonist's sex slave to using the powers of eight tailed beasts and a cursed seal, along with sonic screams and various Chidori-Raikiri versions.
  • Naruto again in Legacy of the Rasengan: Naruto. Due to misunderstanding something Iruka said, (hearing "the 4th Hokage was a great shinobi WHO just so happened to create his own jutsus." as "The 4th was great BECAUSE he created his own jutsus.") Naruto decides to tell the Angst to fuck off and become a badass with his own collection of jutsu. The kicker being all his jutsu are simple and easy to use but WILL reach Gamebreaker status when he gets older. Examples of his jutsu:
    • Enmaku no Jutsu : Naruto attemped the fireball jutsu and ended up coughing up smoke (He has wind affinity so fire is his weakest element). Instead of abandoning this jutsu, he just ends up mastering it using it as a portable Smoke Out when needed. Noted to be just a rank below Zabuza's Kirigakure no Jutsu.
    • Kaze Tate no Jutsu : Creates a tornado around the user that works to deflect things thrown at him. More chakra = Raging Tornado defense. Can also be used for offense (Naruto used it to stop a Gatsuuga).
    • Kaze Kiwa no Jutsu : Creates a wind sword that Naruto upgrades to be near Rasengan levels. Since it contains nothing but wind and chakra, its tip causes massive damage. Naruto used it to cut through Neji's Kaiten.
  • Nicely deconstructed in Escape From The Hokage's Hat by Naruto. Instead of just handing him high level jutsu or just working on his chakra control, Tsunade slowly turns him into a Badass Bookworm fixing his more Leeroy Jenkins impulses, forcing him to plan (he hasn't really got a choice due to a Game-Breaking Injury he's been recovering from for at least 20 chapters), working on his chakra control and getting him involved in politics. The end result is that Naruto goes from a Unskilled, but Strong bruiser who throws massive amounts of chakra, clones and Indy Ploys to solve his problems, to a Weak, but Skilled Lightning Bruiser who can talk and plan his way out of a problem but also get into a fight with 3 Chunin and win by manipulating the fight to his advantage.
  • Played with in The Sealed Kunai where Naruto isn't so much taking levels in badass as regaining them by getting back into the kind of shape he was in as a ROOT member.
  • Both Sakura and Sasuke grow far more competent after a month of personal training in Black Flames Dance in the Wind: Rise of Naruto. More importantly, Sasuke loses his trademark arrogance and Sakura becomes more serious and professional.
    • Hinata becomes considerably more powerful even without accounting for her becoming a Jorogumo.

Neon Genesis Evangelion

  • A Crown of Stars: Shinji and Asuka after getting much needed pshychological counseling and a brand-new Humongous Mecha. They go from two wretches barely capable to fight for their lives to commanders of an army.
  • Advice and Trust: All pilots take at least a level, but special mention goes to Rei who went from being the least effective (albeit most reliable) pilot to giving a good showing against Zeruel.
  • The Child of Love: Due to Gendo messing up with her unborn's daughter DNA, Asuka became fiercer and more dangerous when she fought. She single-handedly held back and pushed away a giant moster who almost crushed both Shinji and Rei.
  • Doing It Right This Time: In this Peggy Sue fic the three main characters take sevel levels:
  • Evangelion 303:
    • Asuka goes through several phases of depression and recovery. Every time she overcomes her issues she becomes stronger and a better pilot.
    • According Kaworu, after recovering from her accident Rei became a better fighter pilot than she was before.
  • HERZ: After spending twelve years training, Shinji, Asuka and Rei are more badass than their teen selves. Shinji and Asuka train every day (Shinji shoots targets in the range, Asuka tries combat simulations inside her Humongous Mecha...) and Rei has an A T Field capable to destroy or pulverize anything -as several terrorists found out- and she has absorbed two ancient alien deities. Asuka is an army commander, too.
  • Higher Learning: Asuka spent a good while depressed and gloomy due to getting constantly beaten and even mind-raped. Shinji managed to make her snapping out of her depression and encourage her to fight right before the final battle, though, and she tore the MP-Evas apart.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion: Genocide: Asuka finally overcomes The Worf Effect that she suffered from in the series, as she manages to bring down Samael after it has defeated both Rei and Shinji.
  • Nobody Dies: A very interesting inversion. Shinji Ikari is no stranger to Taking Levels in Badass, but Nobody Dies Shinji could be more accurately described as having Lost A Level In Suck; thanks to Yui surviving the backstory, Shinji has grown up into a well-adjusted and perfectly normal teenager, with none of the numerous neuroses that plagued him in canon but also none of the unGodly self-confidence or super-powers other fanfics tend to give him when doing this. It makes for a very interesting take on Shinji's character to see him stick up for Asuka and trade verbal jabs with his classmates when he's not smiting Angels with an Eva-scale BFS or a Wave-Motion Gun. Then again, when you're the walking embodiment of This Loser Is You, even becoming an Ordinary High-School Student is a big step in the right direction.
  • Once More with Feeling:
    • Shinji took a level when he returned to the past. Now he knows what the stakes are and what the prize of failure is, so he fights seriously and fiercely rather wasting time whining and feeling sorry for himself. And he uses all his experience and knowledge gained in the original timeline. The result is a more dangerous, more focused and more experienced fighter.
    • As shown in his first battle: in the original timeline Sachiel beat him around until his mother went berserker. In the altered timeline he slaughtered Sachiel so quickly and ruthlessly than Gendo and Ritsuko thought Yui had gone berserker.
  • The One I Love Is...: Shinji tried to become more badass throughout the war to protect people he loved. As a result of it, in the Final Battle he broke synch records and utterly destroyed the MP-Evas.
  • In The Second Try, Shinji and Asuka are more experienced and better fighters than their canon selves, since their immaturity and psychological issues aren't holding back their potential.
  • Shinji And Warhammer 40 K tried to invert this trope in a manner similar to Nobody Dies but the author wound up overshooting the target and turned Shinji into a very straight (and very EPIC) example of this trope instead (Case in point, there's nothing ordinary about an Ordinary High-School Student with his own gang and the universal respect and adoration of his entire hometown).

One Piece

  • Luffy in Nine Minutes loses his Devil Fruit powers at the end of the Alabasta arc due to temporarily dying. But by the end of the Skypiea arc, he's gained mastery over haki AND Enel's Rumble Rumble Fruit. It's bad enough that when a somewhat injured Smoker confronts Luffy while the latter is still injured enough to need a cane and Robin's support to stand, Smoker realizes he can't beat Luffy.
    • Likewise Usopp and Vivi both get Devil Fruits of their own. Usopp gets the Toad-Toad Fruit: Cane Toad Model while Vivi eats the Sand-Sand Fruit.
  • In Supernova (One Piece), Luffy eats a Logia Fruit that turns him into a Sun Man and learns Rokushiki from his grandfather. He also goes on to teach is crew Rokushiki. As a result, Nami beats Krieg and Zoro manages to use Razor Wind by Arlong Park. By the time they reach Loguetown, all three have the highest bounties in the East Blue (50 million for Luffy, 30 for Zoro, and 20 for Nami).
  • This Bites!:
    • In Chapter 19, when Tashigi asks Cross if there's any way to break Mr. 3's wax, he informs her that the only swordsmen capable of cutting anything are those capable of cutting nothing. A short while later, after Mr. 3 impales her, she manages to figure out what that means, cutting through Mr. 3 and his wax to defeat him.
    • Vivi and Carue, after joining the Straw Hats full-time, have new weapons made for them by Usopp, a pair of crescent chain-scythes named Lion Cutters for Vivi, armor, wing and talon-blades for Carue.
    • Luffy unlocks a prototype Gear Second (Gear 1.5) as far back as Skypiea.
      • And a prototype Gear Third (Gear 2.5) as far back as Navarone.
      • And Armament Haki at the climax of Enies Lobby.
      • And Conqueror Haki during Strong World.
    • Leo learns how to cut steel when Donny suggests that Mikey be the new leader of the TDWS.
    • Nami gets her hands on Ohm's Eisen Whip full of Iron Clouds.
    • All over the place during the Enies Lobby Arc:
      • Boss learns and develops his Full-Shell Style, his version of the Six Powers. Even the Six King Gun.
      • Usopp and Carue both learn how to Shave.
      • Soundbite Awakens the Noise-Noise Fruit.
      • Vivi awakens a Compelling Voice that is thought to be a variation of Conqueror's Haki.
    • A villainous example in the Thriller Bark Arc: thanks to a Traumatic Superpower Awakening Moria Awakens the Shadow-Shadow Fruit.
    • Following the Straw Hats Curb-Stomp Battle at the hand of Shiki and Shiki taking Nami from them, Vivi eats the avril of the Gust-Gust Fruit's she got after leaving Alabasta, turning her into the crew's logia.
    • Cross starts the story as a Made of Plasticine Action Survivor who needs to rely on his wits to evade actual combat since he can't even stand up to anyone above the most basic Mooks. By the time of Strong World, Cross has trained enough that while still well below the Monster Trio, he's now a Badass Normal bordering on being a One-Man Army.

101 Dalmatian Street

  • In the fanfic I AM A DE VIL After Thomas brainwashed and enchanced Dylan and he became a Dyrant De Vil. Dyrant can how hold his own in the fight and single-handlily fight mutiple opponents and even kill.

One-Punch Man

  • After her defeat by Saitama in One Punch Man: Hero's Harem, Vaccine Woman was left too weak to defeat even the average civilian, but after weeks of eating pollution (including monsters made of pollution), she's strong enough to escape Child Emperor, one of the strongest S Rank heroes.


  • The Poké Wars series takes this trope and dials it up to eleven. Each and every surviving character becomes a badass fighter.
  • The Sun Soul takes this idea and turns it up to eleven... for Pokemon. No really, the author manages to take something as innocent as Pokemon and upgrade it into a grim, gruesome, and nightmare-inducing retelling, without going overboard on the crazy. Each character is leaps and bounds ahead of their original counterparts in terms of sheer badassery and so far the story has consisted mostly of adventure, mixed with politics and romance, with plenty of action and Anyone Can Die added in.
    • Ash Ketchum certainly qualifies. Trainer abilities and savant heritage aside, the lad is dangerous with a knife.
  • Common Sense features both Ash and Team Rocket repeatedly becoming better in order to keep up with each other. Notably, Ash wins each of his gym battles with skill rather than luck and utterly thrashes Lt. Surge's Raichu. On the other side, Team Rocket has more Pokemon such as Gyarados, Fearow, and Beedrill and aren't above ganging up on enemies, attacking both trainers and bystanders, and attacking enemy Pokemon themselves.
  • Over six months, Ash in Challenger goes from a total rookie whose starter (a Charmander in this story) couldn't even scratch Giovanni's Nidoqueen to making said Nidoqueen actually fight seriously. Furthermore, rather than staying a Naïve Newcomer, Ash becomes a Big Brother Mentor to his cousin Luna and Giovanni's son Silver.
  • In Pokemon: Shadow of Time, after the timeline is reset to stop Cyrus destroying existence, not only is Pikachu a Shadow Pokemon with extra power, but many of Ash’s Pokemon retain the moves they learned in the future even in their pre-evolved states (although with mixed results, such as the risks of Pidgeotto using Hyper Beam). Various later training sessions lead to several of Ash's Pokemon evolving further than they did in canon.
  • Denounce the Evils:
    • Ash's change between Unova and Kalos is lampshaded when Iris is unable to believe that her dopey friend Ash has caught one of the strongest dragon-types out there:
    Iris: I'm sorry. Ash? Ash Ketchum? We're talking about the same Ash, right? He caught, tamed, and evolved fully one of the strongest dragon types in the entire Kalos region? The same Ash who I once witnessed choke on air for a solid ten seconds because he was talking about pokémon with too much enthusiasm?! The Ash who once described a flock of pidove as 'good fluffy boys'?! That Ash?!"
    Meowth: "Yeah, twoip really cleaned his act up in Kalos…"
    • Bonnie is now a trainer and her main Pokémon is her Zygarde named "Squishy".
    • Max has since become a trainer with a powerful Gardevoir as his starter.
  • Pokémon Reset Bloodlines sees this happen for most of Ash's Pokemon, justified because while they do not retain their previous skills or power, they do retain their memories, and thus are more experienced than they should be.
    • Charmander evolves while fighting Lt. Surge, while in canon he didn't evolve until Ash had at least another badge.
    • Aipom evolves in a battle against Paul's Drowzee, considerably earlier than what happened in the original timeline.
    • Pidgeotto evolves in battle against Erika, far earlier than canon.
    • Chapter 23 gives us a twofold with Charmeleon finally becoming Charizard again, and Snivy evolving into Servine.
    • Chapter 27 had Red's Charmeleon evolve into Charizard. The same fight showed that Paul had taken a few levels as well.
    • Chapter 29 had Sligoo evolve.
    • By Chapter 31, some of Ash's Pokémon have already broken the 4-move limit, including Pikachu, Krabby and Charizard.
    • And in Chapter 36, Servine, Krabby and Roggenrola are revealed to have evolved in the aftermath of the Saffron Gym battle.
  • Pokémon: The Lost Child does this with Empoleon:
    • As Pipulp started out pretty weak, but after evolving twice and getting better at team moves with Grovyle/Sceptile, he became much stronger.
    • After evolving into Empoleon, he gains a lot more power, taking out Aegislash when he wasn't expecting it and defeating Grovyle when he couldn't before.
  • In Ascendant, Dawn goes from a rookie trainer to a seriously competent one. She even manages to defeat Paul (yes, that guy) in a tournament.


  • In the Portal 2 fanfic Blue Sky Wheatley goes from a Lovable Coward who can hardly even a Lovable Coward who is willing to sacrifice his life to successfully take down GLaDOS, taking his flaw of bad ideas and weaponising it.

Power Rangers

  • In Crimson Rising, a key element of the fic is Hunter Bradley (Power Rangers Ninja Storm) discovering that he is the heir to the power of the Phoenix Ranger, potentially one of the most powerful warriors of Good who ever lived. However, Hunter is not the only Ranger to gain new powers, as he is one of nineteen other Rangers to receive new versions of their previously lost powers; the rest of the Ninja Storm team, the Dino Thunder team, and ten of Zordon's original twelve Rangers all receive new versions of their old powers or even some new powers (Justin and Zack are absent but Jason, Kat, Tanya and Trini become the Gold, Violet, Green and Silver Dino Thunder Rangers).

Puella Magi Madoka Magica

  • Everyone did in Magica Madoka Veneficus Puella. All of the weapons can be spammed without hesitation. All the characters have enhanced strength and reinforced body structures. Oh, and Homura's a potential goddess.

Ranma ½

  • Hearts of Ice: Akane spends seven years honing her martial skills and fighting demons in the Kami Plane, to the point she can easily beat Cologne when she returns.


Sailor Moon

  • Sailor Moon Millenials gave this treatment to Chibi-Usa of all people by having her come back from the future as a teenager and newly-christened Neo Sailor Moon. While not exactly a Future Badass, she was at least as useful as the other Senshi on a consistent basis.
  • Happens to literally superpowered character in Sailor Moon: Legends of Lightstorm:
    • The entire point of Luna taking Serena to Lightstorm in The Celestial Renegade was so that this could happen to her. The titular Lightstorm leveled her up with only a few hours of training.
    • Every Scout possesses new and more powerful abilities. Attack names have been done away with completely, Sailor Moon now uses her sonic scream as her primary weapon, Sailor Mercury now uses ice instead of water, and Sailor Venus fires powerful impact beams and can control six nigh-unbreakable energy chains.
    • Sailor Mars' powers are pretty much the same, but she can now use her powers to fire powerful jets of flame behind her, letting her "rocket-run" and rocket-punch" at insanely high speeds.
    • Sailor Jupiter made her debut in the original anime by beating up three thugs. In her first scene in Lightning Round, literally the first thing she does is kill six rapists, after a few hours of parkour, without even transforming. Her adrenalin-fueled rage was so strong that she began to transform without her Transformation Trinket, setting the events of the episode in motion.
      • In the episode's climax, Jupiter becomes the first and only "tagless" Sailor Scout (a Scout able to transform through sheer force of will) in history.
    • All the Scouts, in terms of fighting skills. Thanks to Lightstorm, the Scouts now fight off entire squadrons of Negaverse drones at once, and every Scout has had her fair share of kills (Even Mercury, who frequently impales enemies on gigantic ice spikes).
    • Tuxedo Mask has done this as well. His razor roses can slice through the toughest of Negaverse drone armor, he is powerful enough to knock one off its feet with one punch, and he is durable enough to cover Sailor Moon and protect her from an explosion. Inside a hijacked subway.
    • Even Jadeite and Zoisite have had this treatment. Zoisite now consists of two superpowered bodies, and Jadeite fights with all of the powers he had in the anime.

Sonic the Hedgehog

Star Trek

  • A Voice in the Wilderness gives several levels in badass to the Borg after years of Badass Decay in canon. The Borg are now shown using their capabilities far more intelligently, swarming their target, using transwarp to Flash Step around the battlefield, and even having a cube approach its target corner-first to bring weapons on three faces to bear. The upgrades are very nearly lethal to the protagonists. This is all enabled by the Borg Queen being co-opted by the Borg Collective's original AI, One of One.

Star Wars

  • Between their first and last encounters in Precipice, Infernalis becomes much stronger and puts up a better fight against Anakin, matching him nearly blow-for-blow, while their first fight had Anakin overwhelming him and he had to rely on trickery to get away.

Supergirl (2015)

  • Survivors: Kara was given combat training before leaving Krypton.


  • In Kara of Rokyn, the titular character undergoes several training regimes to hone and refine her fighting skills, learning wrestling moves and martial arts.
  • Superman of 2499: The Great Confrontation: After being brutally beaten down in a fight and being told about the incoming familiar conflict, Katherine decides the world needs Supergirl and takes martial arts classes.
  • In Hellsister Trilogy, Mordru, who is already a massively powerful Evil Sorcerer, goes to Hell to merge with the source of all evil in the universe in order to make himself truly unstoppable.

Total Drama

  • In Courtney's Crusade for Redemption Sam does much better in challenges, even winning the first post-merge's challenge; he mostly does this it due to being motivated to win for Dakota.
  • Unbreakable Red Silken Thread: Heather got Cody in better shape compared to how he was on Total Drama, and do to this, he actually enjoys excersizing and going outside, compared to before when he would just sit inside playing video games all day. Also, his confedents has became much better as well, as he has no problem standing up to Heather when needed.

Touhou Project

  • In FREAKIN GENSOKYO, sex-crazed fairy-maids Koi, Komi and Namori take several in time for Chapter 83. They hold their own against not only Brad but Ha-chan, Renko and Maribel. Komi even gives Shikome a run for her money.


The World Ends with You

  • Eris Game: Eri goes from fashion designer to butt-kicking activist.

WormTaylor Hebert Medhall Intern: Greg goes from being a timid little screw-up to being able to get the drop on Shadow Stalker.


  • Fallen King has everyone to some degree, but especially Joey Wheeler, who becomes the hero of the story.

Young Justice

  • Young Justice: Darkness Falls: Gives us several of the canon characters only getting better.
    • The author allows Wondergirl a lot more time to actually do stuff in this fic: fighting the furies, rescuing herself from penguin's giant shark, fighting the hordes of apokalips, and even taking down Volcanna all by herself in the Final Battle. A big step up from her appearances in season 2.
    • Beast Boy goes from the goofball with some utility to the badass responsible for banishing Klarion from our dimension. The surest sign of this is when in the final battle, he becomes a dinosaur to fight Teekel on more even terms.
    • Superboy also gets a boost after he's partially aged to unlock TTK (Tactile Telekinesis like in the comics). It gives him a little extra punch to his strength, and even lets him fly.
    • Wally West gets a speed boost from being under Apokalips, allowing him to fight on even terms with The Flash when he was slower than him in the show.


  • In the WWE story, The Return-Remixed, the later chapters show Kelly Kelly (the real-life personification of everything that was wrong with the WWE Divas division) coming back from a 10-Minute Retirement and becoming one of the strongest components of the Diva Army. In one of the first chapters, it's mentioned that Ashley Massaro and Maria Kanellis, two women regarded among the worst Divas in WWE history, had seriously stepped up their game between their departures and their return with DEAR.
  • Matthew Streika, once the living embodiment of the Idiot Ball carrying Wide-Eyed Idealist, now has taken some levels in badass. He threw himself in the way of The Brute's attack, got some nifty magic, and kicked a lot of ass. Shuuji followed in Chapter 2, redeeming himself by making a Heel–Face Turn, and then reducing Medraut to a quivering wreck. Even little Alina, who in the first Canon was an annoying Bratty Half-Pint, became so much more badass as a Biological Superpowered Magical Weapon. Alina's adoptive little sister, Alexandra "Lexie" Ivanov, starts out only able to summon little lizards and heal people...and she is a Shout-Out to Final Fantasy's Summoner Class...wait, what's she summoning now, a bigger lizard? Nope, you're dead, Adrian. What's that sound? Its the world taking a fear shit: She just summoned Dragon Emperor Andreclav