Second Episode Morning
After a potentially unusual first episode, the second starts with the character waking up out of bed, muttering something about a strange dream or nightmare. The character then realizes the first episode actually happened yesterday or gets reminded it did. Any characters they met frequently appear in their home (or at school as a New Transfer Student) bright and cheerful as if nothing special happened and they've been buddies for ages. (For works heavy on Fan Service, "in their home" equals "she is sleeping in his bed, naked".)
Since this is technically not the end of a two-part episode arc, someone will provide a monologue of the first episode's important bits for the especially absent-minded audience. It's also useful for the character, since they might not have even had time to digest the situation before the last episode ended. This can be so effective the viewer can skip the first episode entirely if they want to see how a 'real' episode is handled.
- After initially encountering Mone in a dream during the first episode of Yumeria, Tomokazu Mikuri wakes up to find her laying in his bed next to him.
- Played with in the final episode of Neon Genesis Evangelion: Shinji briefly imagines an alternate reality where it's still the Second Episode Morning, and the entire series has been a bad dream he was having. Most of the audience only wishes the final episode in turn was a bad dream.
- Technically happens in Episode Two but has more of a hospital bed than his own also, it's more of an Episode Two Hangover from the events of Episode One
- And eventually that sequence in the final episode went on to become its own AU series, providing us with a slightly happier version of Eva.
- Hideki wakes up in the second episode of Chobits to find Chii asleep in bed with him. The Scream ensues.
- Hazumu discovers in the second episode of Kashimashi: Girl Meets Girl that A) yes, she's still a girl, and B) aliens have moved in to her house.
- Usagi has a Second Episode Morning in Sailor Moon and is shocked to find that Luna can, in fact, talk to her, and that the previous episode's battle wasn't a dream.
- Similarly, the main character of Cardcaptor Sakura has trouble waking up in the second episode, until newly introduced cute-animal sidekick Keroberos speaks to her, both startling her and jogging her memory of the previous evening's events.
- In Mamotte Shugogetten, after a destruction-filled first night with Shaorin, the hero wakes up thinking it was all a dream, only to have Shaorin cheerfully greet him. (Never mind the obvious problem of him wondering how he woke up to hot coffee being right next to him.) This actually all happened in the first episode, but it was the same idea.
- Mai-Otome Zwei, being an OAV series, has a second scene morning, that otherwise exactly duplicates the trope.
- In the second episode of Kurau Phantom Memory Kurau wakes up to find her Rynax-pair sleeping next to her, making her realize happily that she is not alone anymore.
- Bleach features this as well. After Ichigo becomes a Shinigami, and defeats Fishbone D he wakes up apparently thinking it's a dream, until he notices his house has a huge hole in it, and Rukia shows up at his school as a New Transfer Student.
- In the second chapter of Yotsuba&!, the title character wakes up in a strange house and panics, before remembering they just spent yesterday moving.
- The first episode of Rockman EXE Axess, the third season, has Netto performing Cross Fusion, defeating the Dragon to the Dragon Beastman, and then passing out from the exertion. The episode ends with Rockman frantically calling for him after he's out on the ground. He wakes up in the second episode, spaces out for a bit, then goes into a panic when he remembers the events of the previous day and can't find his partner. (In Mega Man NT Warrior, Lan wakes up immediately and banters with Mega Man at the end of the first episode.)
- A particularly strange example of this trope occurred with the American broadcast of Vision of Escaflowne, in which Fox network executives made good on that whole "the viewer can skip the first episode entirely" thing by actually skipping most of the first episode, which details how Hitomi got from Earth to Gaia. Instead, the show starts off with her "new life" already underway. The subsequent episodes were chopped up in a similar way, combining halves of episodes together and moving things around, until they just dropped it altogether.
- Kamina Ayato from RahXephon gets one of these. After a...hectic day where several inexplicable events happen to him he wakes up in a hospital with no memory of what occurred. He gets his memory back later in the episode.
- The second chapter of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann -- Guren Gakuenhen.
- Omamori Himari: First day, Himari shows up at the way to school. At school, Yuuto is attacked, Himari comes out of nowhere and defends him. At night, she sneaks into his house (and bed). Then, the second chapter starts with booth getting woken up by Rinko...
- Space Pirate Mito plays with this by having Mito, caught climbing out of her Mom suit by her son, Aoi, at the very end of the first episode, climbing back in at the beginning of the second and assuring her son that what he saw was just a dream. The two of them laugh it off until she realizes that her non-human crewmates are still hanging around. With no other choice, she shows him her true self (an alien that looks like a 3rd grader), causing Aoi to faint. The very next scene shows Aoi waking up screaming and deciding that he must have dreamt the previous scene. Until his house is destroyed by a giant version of his mom that suddenly takes to the air. Aoi flees, then is hit by a car, and then wakes up screaming again, this time for real. He hears his mom's voice from the other room, but when he sees her in her true form again, he leaps back into bed, hoping that this, too, is All Just a Dream. (It's not.)
- To LOVE-Ru has Rito waking to find his naked alien fiance in his bed.
- Seikon no Qwaser has this.
- The Melancholy of Suzumiya Haruhi episode 1 starts with Kyon waking up, going to school, introducing himself to his new classmates and meeting Haruhi, the girl who would make him do that god-awful movie shown in Episode 00.
- Puella Magi Madoka Magica does this in episode 02. Madoka awakens to discover the creature known as Kyubey she found yesterday is very real.
- All three Back to The Future movies have a sequence where Marty awakens and tells his mother he dreamed he traveled back in time, only to be told "you're safe here in good old 1955/the 27th floor/the McFly farm".
- As well, Back to the Future Part II ends on a cliffhanger, with Marty announcing to Doc that he came back from the future, just after Doc sends him back to the future in a sequence first shown in the first movie. This causes Doc to faint, and after waking up at home in the beginning of Part III, he dismisses the encounter as a hallucination... until he bumps into Marty, who's right there with him in the room and who continues to claim that he came back from the future.
- Also, at the end of the trilogy, Jennifer believes that her time in the future was a dream - until she finds the fax paper in her pocket.
- The second episode of Frasier starts this way, with the main character waking up to find Martin and Daphne in his apartment. He is not pleased.
- In the second episode of Spaced, Tim wakes up to find the flat clean and pristine, and his ex-girlfriend Sarah is there to assure him that she would never, ever break up with him. Then his alien costume comes to life and drags him under the door, screaming.
- Through dub editing, Winx Club originally opened with Bloom waking up in the morning, before eventually finding Stella (who's fighting an ogre and various creatures). In the dub, Bloom finds Stella and her fight first, and then the 2nd segment of the show opens with Bloom waking up in the morning, and finding that she didn't just dream all that up.
- In Kim Possible, after the titular character and Ron Stoppable finally get together after three seasons, the first episode of the fourth season begins with the last of the third: the last dance, the kiss. That is, until Kim begins to melt. Cue Ron waking up screaming and calling his new girlfriend for the assurance that indeed, they were dating. And again, at the end of the episode:
Kim: How many times do I have to tell you? We kissed, we're dating.