The Messiah

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.

"Nausicaa is the thread that joins us all together. Us, the Doroks, even Kushana and the wormhandlers. Without Nausicaa, we would only quarrel and splinter."

The main character, simply put, loves everyone. Loves them with a deep, spiritual love that means they will shake heaven and earth, destroy gods and planets, bring nations to their knees, etc. for the person they just met yesterday. They will believe the best of everyone, and constantly give someone a second chance (though they will defeat the Big Bad). They repay cruelty with kindness and anger with calm, as long as the attacks are only against them—they're not forgiving of harm done to others. They are the ones who will suffer for the sins of their loved ones. Most people think they're insane, but somehow they pull it off. Even Mary Sue and Marty Stu are impressed.

The Empathic Weapon trusts them completely, as does every animal they meet. Their every step causes flowers to bloom. Their circle of friends are in awe of them, if not somewhat in love with them. They'll even attract an Anti-Hero or two who will stick around so they can at least figure out what drugs this person is taking—and where they can get some. In their hands The Power of Love and The Power of Friendship can be an awesome force, they may be the standard bearer for the message that You Are Not Alone and if anything can redeem a person against the odds by showing them the light of goodness, it will probably be The Messiah.

On the Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism, The Messiah is a heavily idealistic character. Even in a dark world, they are ideal. In the hands of a bad writer, the character can easily be mutated into a Mary Sue.

In terms of the Four Loves, The Messiah is Agape, or Unconditional Love for All, personified. However, by no means is the character exempt from the the other three loves.

The Fool is sometimes the embryonic state of The Messiah doubled as the Idiot Hero. A Magnetic Hero has the intangible quality of earning respect and followers that some Messiah characters do but without needing the "love and forgive everyone" part. The Messiah who takes their idealism too far into Face Palm-worthy idiocy (like seriously trying to trade the Artifact of Doom if the villain promises not to hurt anyone) may lapse into Stupid Good or Lawful Stupid. If such a character is still messianic but do have some more realistic flaws or moments in which they're Not So Above It All, you're likely to be in front of a Broken Messiah.

The protagonist in a White Man's Burden story will often be The Messiah. For the character who only thinks they're The Messiah, see the Love Freak. The Cutie shares a lot of The Messiah's characteristic personality type, but isn't as much of a paragon of idealism and may or may not have their overpowering charisma. Similarly, The Pollyanna has the Messiah's optimism and good heart, but doesn't have the same kind of charisma or deep spiritualism.

Sub-Trope to Ideal Hero. Compare Martyr Without a Cause, The Paragon, The Heart, Incorruptible Pure Pureness, Purity Sue, Love You and Everybody, Nice Guy. This trope is not about Jesus-analogs; that's Messianic Archetype. While they and The Messiah sometimes overlap, a character with the Messianic Archetype can be far-flung from being The Messiah in mind and behavior. Contrast Dark Messiah, which can stand in opposition to this but is more Messianic Archetype + Anti-Hero as well as Complete Monster and Misanthrope Supreme.

In the context of methods of climax fulfillment, this may be referred to as a "Love Hero". May overlap with For Happiness as a character motivation.

Examples of The Messiah include:

Anime and Manga

  • Usagi Tsukino from Sailor Moon, though she started as The Fool. Not only that, she actually gets called the Messiah later.
    • It should be noted, though, that Usagi is more of The Messiah in the anime than in the manga, where despite still being very compassionate and a good person, she's much less forgiving of those who hurt her loved ones.[1]
      • And if you want to know how much of a Messiah Usagi is in the live-action Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon, look for signs from the second episode. You've definitely got a Messiah in play when, in the middle of a fight, she's hanging by one arm off a balcony and trying to convince the next senshi-to-be not to become a senshi if she doesn't want to, using lines like "Don't worry, it'll work out somehow!"
    • Mistress 9 is The Antichrist to Usagi's Messiah, unless of course you want to be comprehensive and cover the other seasons, and then it's Chaos.
  • Shinya from Watashi no Messiah-sama accepts his duty to save the planet of his beloved by defeating the Big Bad, but refuses to harm anyone, including the Big Bad even after having ripped his heart off and being left off to die.
    • Earlier in the series he fires a lightning at himself to make Hime, who was trying to kill him, to back off without harming her.
      • And when Sariel, one of the Dark Messiah subordinates, merely puts Hime to sleep, Shinya snaps, fights and actually manages to bruise him. Did we mention the fact that Sariel, being the Angel of Death, can see the future, wipe out armies by himself and is Nigh Invulnerable?.
  • Tohru Honda from Fruits Basket. Kind to everyone, forgives even the most evil, saves everyone with her love.
  • Kintaro from Golden Boy. He is a pervert, but he has morals, and is very sensitive and kindhearted
  • Goku from Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z.
    • Self-sacrificing? At least once. Forgives people who just tried to kill him, kill his friends, and blow up his planet? Many story arcs end this way. Defeats those people? He's always the one to do it. Turns those people into friends? This is how he makes friends. Pure-hearted? He has a flying cloud to prove it.
    • Mind you, he's also got a long-term Raised By Wolves quality and never seems to quite get normal moralities, just like he didn't get that you don't pat people's genitals to check their gender as a kid. Manifests in his habit of keeping his most terrible enemies alive so he can fight them again, beginning with Vegeta. (New Piccolo doesn't entirely count because he was already showing signs of emotional development and had technically only been born after all the shit Piccolo Daimaou pulled. Also, Kami-sama.)
    • Which would seem to feed into the story's Messiah complex, since if he hadn't spared Vegeta - for whatever morally ambiguous reason - Trunks would never have existed. Then he couldn't have returned to the past and saved Goku's life, preventing the hostile takeover by the androids. There are also several instances during the Namek saga where Vegeta's presence, despite his still being a Villain Protagonist at that point, was probably a lifesaver for Krillin, Gohan, and Bulma. While Goku's morality may be eccentric and/or questionable, within the story's narrative, his choices almost invariably lead to a better outcome for everyone involved.
  • Kenshiro of Fist of the North Star.
    • His older adoptive brother, Toki, is an even better example, due to his approach to the Hokuto Shinken martial arts style is to use it for healing the sick of the wasteland rather than bringing criminals to justice. While he does rack up some kills too, he has a very interesting way to do it, making his victims' death actually be pleasurable rather than painful. Also, he doesn't so much have a case of Looks Like Jesus as being Bodybuilder Kung Fu Jesus.
    • And their counterparts from the Nanto Roku Seiken; Rei, the Star of Justice, who must live and die for others, and his best friend Shu, the Star of Benevolence, who sacrifices himself for the sake of one hundred innocents.
  • Kikyo from Inu Yasha before her supposed betrayal and murder at the hands of Inu Yasha, who was really Naraku in disguise. Even after being revived from the dead, she is frequently seen helping weak and helpless people, although her personality undergoes significant change.
    • Kagome.
  • Bleach: It would seem that Orihime Inoue is qualified for the title, as captured by the Arrancar, she refuses to hurt them, shows them love, resurrects their dead even after they were trying to torture her, and helps one of the most emotionless of them to discover what the heart is before he dies.
    • And recently, she shields a guy who has just tried to attack her from his boss who is all "You Have Failed Me..." mode with a badass Go Through Me.
      • A prime example of using one's Messianic nature against someone. Shishigawara is still alive, implying that Tsukishima did it as a way to get her to attempt to attack him. In other words, it was all a trap.
    • Reconfirmed and without traps in a brief novel, where she heals and saves Harribel and the girls of her Amazon Brigade, giving them a sort-of happy ending.
    • Also, Ichigo Kurosaki. Despite his protests on the contrary, he's the one who gives hope to others and saves them, and his main motivation is to protect the people he loves and cares for. And he's also another case of using one's Messianic nature against someone else... again courtesy of Tsukishima, who has brainwashed his friends and family and renders poor Ichigo incredibly pissed and almost desperate.
  • Naruto, to the point where it makes you wonder why he had such an abnormally hard time making friends prior to the start of the series (although it can be because nobody wanted to truly meet him after all).

Kakashi: Naruto has a mysterious power. Everyone who meets him becomes his friend, no matter how little contact they have beforehand.

    • Hinata, Shikamaru, Temari, Neji, and Gaara all note that he has the power to influence people. It's worth noting that Naruto tends to get off to a bad start with most of the people he befriends, and they're often completely dismissive of him for reasons typically unrelated to him having the fox inside him. Unlike many of the other examples, he's not always civil in response, but his determination and honesty cause many of these people to see him, and often themselves, in a new light.
      • Add to this, of course, that he really is the messiah, and...
  • Vash from Trigun often has to be prodded into shooting the bad guys instead of trying to reason the virtues of life with them. Even then, he refuses to kill humans, even if it means bandaging up the people he just took down.
    • Wolfwood occasionally seems to see Vash in this light, and well beyond his Technical Pacifist stance above he will do anything to save people. From diving into blows that carved the scars all over him to stripping naked and barking like a dog to get a hostage free to training constantly so that his skills are up to pulling off his signature miracles. His whole identity is tied up in saving people.
    • And he's the primary defender of the human race on his planet, and main proponent of the creed that everybody can theoretically live in harmony. Even his True Companions aren't a big help—Millie has a good measure of Incorruptible Pure Pureness but doesn't do abstracts, Meryl tends to be a realist, and his best friend is an Anti-Hero. And a mercenary assassin. And The Mole.
    • In a similar vein is Tendou Rushuna from Grenadier, who is a bit more Martial Pacifist than Vash, but has likewise never killed anyone, even in the face of them apparently killing a new friend of hers. Even her name is a play on this: Rushuna is a play on a Rushana Buddha, a statue exemplifying the essence of the Buddha, while her surname, Tendou, translates to "Heavenly Path."
  • Mai Tokiha from My-HiME is an interesting case. She spends much of the series struggling to come to terms with her feelings, and is capable of expressing a wide range of negative emotions, ranging from mere disgust to violent rage. In spite of this, she seems to be the type who wants to see the best in people, and never seems to be able to bring herself to feel actual hatred towards anybody, even those who have tried to hurt her. Furthermore, despite her claims that she doesn't have "the time or energy to deal with other people's problems," when push comes to shove she's just not the type of person who can abandon others when she has a chance to help them. In the end, it's her love that allows her to save her possessed best friend/veritable little sister Mikoto, as she chooses to meet Mikoto's berserk rage with open arms and hope that her feelings can reach the other girl.
  • Arika Yumemiya from Mai-Otome. She initially takes on her newfound powers with relish, but after she learns about what an Otome's duties truly are, she tries to keep up her vow to change the system in order to save the lives of her friends.
  • Both Kanade and Rino from Best Student Council, but the latter is also The Fool.
  • Nanoha Takamachi from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha; this becomes especially apparent when you see how she and her friends met.
    • It's worth mentioning that the Nanoha fanbase uses the term "befriend" as a synonym for "beat the hell out of". She does, however, possess an astounding success rate for turning villains into lifelong allies.
    • Not only that, but in the closing theme music of season 3, she walks on water, and then flowers bloom all around her. Subtle much?
  • Nagisa Aoi from Strawberry Panic.
  • Milfeulle Sakuraba of Galaxy Angel has many aspects of The Messiah, along with the ones that clearly qualify her as The Ditz and The Fool.
  • Yoh Asakura from Shaman King.
    • Also subverted with Iron Maiden Jeanne, who's believed to be The Messiah but is more of a Knight Templar.
  • Belldandy of Ah! My Goddess! also generally falls into this trope; even her (astoundingly rare) bouts of anger are more likely to result in her forcibly healing the soul of whoever she's fighting, rather than actually harm them.
    • When she's drunk (on cola), she goes around causing small miracles to help animals, children, the elderly, stray animals, demons, inanimate objects, and pretty much anything else she lays eyes on.
  • Lucia Nanami from Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch.
  • Ginji Amano from GetBackers is even referred to by this moniker several times in the anime and manga, and is very much loved and respected by his allies as a result of his Love Freak tendencies. But when his Super-Powered Evil Side kicks in (partly because he's the kind to want to take on others' pain and suffering), you'd never be able to believe it...
  • Misaki of Angelic Layer; not only her core circle of friends but everyone she's ever fought comes to every one of her matches, cheers for her to win (even the ones that hated her at first) and tries desperately to find out what her opponent's secret is, even though she can't accept any help during the match.
  • Judai Yuki of the Post Modernism Yu-Gi-Oh GX. Originally used straight and frequently noticed and discussed by characters like Sameshima, Saiou, Asuka, Ryo, and Edo; but then deconstructed by Season 3, when the pressure of being everyone's source of strength and inspiration is finally too much for him. His True Companions' dependence on him was actually the key the next Big Bad used to kill them, and Judai's heartbreak at his failure to live up to being this character contributed to his fall to The Dark Side. And it took him a lot to pull himself back from the despair.
  • Yugi, the protagonist of Yu-Gi-Oh. It was the regular Yugi who first binds the whole group together, does the self sacrifice thing on several occasions; pretty much every good guy in the series will die for that kid given the proper motivation, and the deck monsters adore him. While the pharaoh is the "hero" of the piece, he kind of subverts the Messiah thing now and again, what with his susceptibility to evil and the odd bout of Unstoppable Rage... usually brought on by anybody trying to hurt the aforementioned regular Yugi or any of their friends.
    • That time he elected to kill Ryou to save the world was choice, even if Ryou survived. Sorta. It might be a good thing they wrote the poor kid out; none of the main cast had the energy to help him with his trauma even if they'd been able to make sure he was actually him.
    • Yes, but "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the British"
    • Yugi specializes in provoking Face Heel Turn, although his final count isn't that high, since he doesn't even get access to half their enemies.
  • Subaru Sumeragi from Tokyo Babylon and X 1999. A subversion occurs when it doesn't work and, without losing the core of his kindness and compassion, he loses everything and becomes the opposite of what he used to be.
  • Kambei from Samurai Seven inspires great loyalty with words alone, and he forgives and sees worthiness where no one else would. Just in case all that's not clear enough, he also sports white robes and a distinctly Jesus-like haircut.
    • He's also given up on life, and largely on people. Broken Messiah? Messianic Archetype but not The Messiah? The Messiah isn't supposed to find young enthusiasm like Katushiro's so irritating and naive.
  • Dr. Kenzo Tenma from Monster. This is both a large advantage and similarly a large disadvantage to him because of the complex location on the Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism that Monster inhabits.
    • This is epitomized by his decision in the ending: rather than returning to private practice, Tenma signs up with the MSF, proving that he's willing to take bullets to help complete strangers. All this after a sociopathic Manipulative Bastard devotes himself to putting him through hell and showing him that this is a Crapsack World.
  • Yuko Okonogi from Dennou Coil.
  • Alphonse Elric from Fullmetal Alchemist generally is considered the level-headed brother who always looks on the bright side of life. He has also converted two chimera soldiers to his cause just by showing them that they are still human.
    • 'course, Ed got two by a similar attitude and fighting until he collapsed, and Roy is A Father to His Men and it always works. Lots of that going around; Al is just the only sweet one.
  • Gon Freeccs from Hunter X Hunter. He is extremely nice and forgiving, and has a tendency to make people like and admire him. He is also The Fool to an extent, mostly because of his brute strength and dumb luck.
  • Kazuki Muto from Busou Renkin. Declares the intention to protect everyone, and will defend people who've been trying to kill him if he thinks they're redeemable. One of them immediately turns around and offers her own life to save Kazuki from her brother -- so it works.
    • Not only that. He's nice to everybody, he tries to save everybody, and even helps people who were killing him not five minutes before, even people who were killing him five minutes previously, then stop, then betray the truce, he'll still help them!
    • His romantic rival thinks it'd be practical to kill some people who're trying to murder him, Kazuki, and the girl they're rivals over ... "but Kazuki wouldn't like that," so he lets them live.
  • Sora Naegino from Kaleido Star, despite being bullied by some of her companions and having to face Training from Hell to compensate for her lack of training compared to others, actually manages to win the hearts and respect to even her most bitter rivals.
  • Sawada Tsunayoshi from Katekyo Hitman Reborn, though he was initially The Fool and the Butt Monkey. However, as the series went on and got more serious, he became this. Especially noticeable with his relationship with Mukuro.
  • The Digimon leads seem to have an element of this, more often than not. Masaru manages to pick up where his father Suguru left off as far as reaching out to Digimon and trying to create the world where Digimon and humans can live together. Daisuke, Takato, and Takuya also have their moments.
    • Taichi's younger sister Hikari plays The Messiah role straight in Adventure, but subverts it in 02. Her Crest of Light helps her channel spirits, reach for others and all, to the point of making her a borderline Purity Sue at times. However, in 02 Hikari shows huge emotional damage as she's much less able to handle the stress, to the point of having two serious Heroic BSODs that Takeru and Miyako have to pull her out from.
  • D.Gray-man‍'‍s protagonist, Allen Walker. Sure he's got a freaky deformed arm, but he's intensely dedicated to destroying Akuma, and by gum, he'll save everyone doing it.
    • And not just the people; his Empathic Weapon is powered by his will to fight for both the well-being of the living and for the salvation of the Akuma's souls, who systematically try to kill him and all of his friends. Without the will to save both of them, the weapon won't work. In fact, it pretty much showed him getting an epiphany and coming to the realization that he loves both humans and Akumas alike.
  • Nana "Hachi" Komatsu from Nana can turn even the toughest punk rocker into silly putty just by smiling cheerfully.
  • Kato in Gantz. The twist? He's not the main character. The resident Jerkass is. The Jerkass gets better though and becomes a Messiah himself in the Dinosaur arc.
  • Although a very minor character in terms of screentime, Mary Magdalene from Chrono Crusade otherwise fits all of the requirements to a T. Gentle and constantly smiling (almost a little too much), Mary shows kindness even to the demons who kidnapped her, becoming like family to them. She even willingly helps them when a prophetic vision revealed to her that she would be killed by one of them. In the anime, they decided to make it obvious who she is by giving her stigmata, as well.
  • Basara from Macross 7... who is an odd mix of Messiah and Jerkass.
    • Speaking of Macross, does Anime/Macross Frontier's VF-25 Messiah counts?
  • Clannad series has got a lot of characters who can be classified as such, including:
    • Nagisa Furukawa fulfills this role, especially in the original game and the movie. She gets it from her mother Sanae, who seems to support emotionally almost everyone who has problems.
    • Kotomi is another example. She doesn't seem to hate anyone, especially after she gets rid of her fears.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: A constant inspiration to others? Check. Never seems to express genuine rage even during combat? Check. Group starts to fall apart when he's gone? Yep. This may sound slightly insane, but that sounds a lot like Kamina. After his death, the role is debatably shared by Nia and Simon.
    • Further cementing things is Kamina getting a final Crowning Moment of Awesome from beyond the grave when he rescues the trapped Dai-Gurren Brigade from the Anti-Spiral's inescapable Lotus Eater Machine, allowing them to save the day.
    • And just in case you weren't sure, a) kami is the Japanese word for "God" and b) Jesus' best friend was called Simon Peter, who eventually took over the role of leadership. The spear through the side was probably a bit much after all that...
    • Also, as more fuel to the fire, the part of Giga Drill Breaker where the enemy mechs are immobilized is remarkably similar to crucifying... and Kamina died during that.
  • The titular character from Galaxy Fraulein Yuna is a prime example of this. An 9-year-old out-of-control android girl, Ayako, is destroying a hospital in a temper tantrum, and all the characters (almost all former enemies) are trying to contain the destruction and destroy the android. Not Yuna; she admonishes "You're going in to fight an enemy, I'm going in to make a friend!" And she does.
    • Yuna's title, the "Savior of Light," can also be translated from Japanese to mean "Messiah of Light".
  • Jiyu Nanohana from Jubei Chan. She's the reincarnation of one eyed Ninja Yagyu Jubei, and she turns into a powerful swordswoman when she put on a magic eye patch she becomes a bad ass, busty version of her predecessor. Jiyu, who is nicknamed Jubei-Chan by her father who ghostwrites samurai novels, doesn't want to hurt anyone and hates turning into Jubei. She is pressured into it when she discovers that the Ryujoji clansmen who keep trying to kill/challenge her as Jubei end up living happier lives after she defeats them, because her Healing Shiv frees them from the magically-enhanced hatred that dominated their (after)lives. Jiyu fits this archetype well; not only does she go to great lengths to avoid hurting the people who are trying to fight her, but everyone loves her—even opponents she has defeated will go to great lengths to protect her.
  • Gundam Wing: Relena Peacecraft. Although by Endless Waltz she has abandoned the doctrine of total pacifism as unrealistically idealist, she certainly tried to make it work, and went on to become an ambassador of peace. More importantly, she plays a large role in bringing Heero around from the emotionless "kill whoever it takes to accomplish the mission" mentality brought on by his implied Training from Hell into someone capable of sympathy.
    • Quatre also counts a lot toward this, being the Apologetic Attacker and kind heart of the 5 Gundam pilots. Unlike others, however, he does have his limits: when his father dies, his favorite sister is injured and he's betrayed by his colony, he goes violently insane under the effects of the ZERO System and doesn't recover until a friend makes a borderline Heroic Sacrifice. Then he reaffirms his Messiah-ness by making what he can to atone and slowly but surely maturing into The Captain of the Gundam pilots, keeping the group together. And snapping the aforementioned friend out of his Easy Amnesia.
  • Shu from Now and Then, Here and There. In a series so heavily on the cynical side of the sliding scale, this is far less effective than it would be in other places.
  • Makoto in El Hazard the Magnificent World, to some extent.
  • Mikan from Gakuen Alice
  • Ryuubi and Chuubou from Ikki Tousen.
  • Domon Kasshu from G Gundam, to an extent. Sure, the guy is REALLY Not Good with People and sometimes borders on Jerkass, but in the end he's the one who pilots the God Gundam against the Devil Gundam Colony that has seized Neo Japan and saves his Brainwashed and Crazy girlfriend through a surprisingly wordy and well-done Anguished Declaration of Love so they can use The Power of Love against the Big Bad. Impressive, huh?
  • Negi Springfield of Mahou Sensei Negima starts looking like one of these, but as the manga progresses, he starts becoming more painfully aware of his own weaknesses, and is willing to use questionable means to combat them. His motivation is pure as ever though, and he still falls into Honor Before Reason a lot.
    • His father Nagi is a more straight example; he more-or-less saved the world singlehandedly, ending a world war in the process, and he's one of the most popular people in the magic world. So of course, he had to go MIA right around the time Negi was born.
    • And then the manga has another example: Princess Arika, Negi's Missing Mom. She was accused of being exactly the opposite, as well as tried and apparently executed, but the common people didn't buy it because she was genuinely kind to them.
  • Sora from [[Mahou Tsukai ni Taisetsu na Koto: Natsu no Sora|Mahou Tsukai ni Taisetsu na Koto Natsu no Sora]].
  • Albert from Gankutsuou becomes something of this at the end. The Count destroys his family and his life, murders his best friend who loved him, and tries to kill him in front of his father. However, instead of wanting revenge, he readily forgives The Count and uses the Power of Love and Forgiveness (along with a kiss) to save the day.
    • Note that everything Albert ever does goes wrong, not entirely because of the Count's machinations. Even when he saves Edmond, he can't save him because the end of Franz's sword is still in his heart. The only people he actually manages to save are Eugenie, and that's really all Peppo's doing, and Haidee. And the world from whatever Gankutsuou would have done with Edmond's body, but I don't think that was even on his radar.
      • Fernand's bombing of Paris is treated rather leniently compared to his sale of a princess into slavery.
    • And Albert is in great pain, and nearly-alone in a shattered world at the end. The most you can say is that he survived, without really ceasing to be himself. Which is something, but Incorruptible Pure Pureness maybe, Messiah no.
  • Isaac, Miria, and Jacuzzi from Baccano! Isaac and Miria are the clueless type who unwittingly tend to spread joy and inspire people (ie. Eve, Ennis, Jacuzzi and Czeslaw) whereas Jacuzzi is the type that proactively (and almost suicidally) goes out of his way to help even complete strangers...unless you hurt his True Companions. In that case, you're fucked.
  • Shibuya Yuuri of Kyo Kara Maoh transcends this trope. He doesn't even kill the Big Bad. He befriends dragons, breaks down race walls, has managed to overturn every foreign policy his country ever had in less than a year in favor of world peace, and trusts and loves everyone even after he's been betrayed by them twice, then used as a Person of Mass Destruction to wipe out an entire naval fleet. It gives his bodyguards migranes and is driving his fiance toward an aneurysm.
    • Susannah Julia Von Wincott, Yuuri's previous incarnation is the absolute embodiment of this trope. Yuuri is said to have inherited many of her former traits.
    • In fact, apparently God engineered him through several reincarnations for this. Soushuu states that Yuuri himself was required to put the final seal of worthless mediocrity on his perfect vessel, but Shinou wanted him to outright surpass him so as to defeat Shoushuu.
  • Mana Kirihara in Aquarian Age: Juvenile Orion.
  • Kitano from Angel Densetsu manages to be this and a Nightmare Fuel Station Attendant.
  • Akira from Aoi Hana has some of this, since she has the ability to be friends with most other girls. Later she is surpassed in that regard by Haruka, who drags everybody along by sheer enthusiasm.
  • Marin from Umi Monogatari is prone to randomly hugging people and saying that she loves them. Kanon, her sister, a giant turtle. It doesn't matter. The girl's got plenty of love to spread around.
  • Both Garrod Ran and Tifa Addil in Gundam X. Garrod, because he managed to subvert almost any of poor Tiffa's horrendous visions and help humanity Screw Destiny; Tiffa, because her kindness let her reach for Garrod and show people what was needed to get the peace they all needed. No wonder they fall in love and get together in the end.
  • Yuuto Amakawa from Omamori Himari is an example. While demon hunters and ayakashi are generally depicted as being very violent towards each other, Yuuto refuses to have anything to do with demon slaying, and strongly believes that demon hunters and ayakashi can live with each other in peace-and was willing to step into a fight armed with only his belief in Shizuku's ability to let go of her past and return to a peaceful life.
  • Lute, the older brother of Flute and the son of Queen Horn in the Violinist of Hameln.
  • Keiichi, from Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, falls into this eventually.
  • The Claw from Gun X Sword is an extremely rare villainous example of The Messiah.
  • Several characters on Code Geass—and they stick out all the more since most of the show is a nasty battle of either Grey and Gray Morality or Black and Grey Morality, depending on your point of view.
    • Lelouch's half-sister, Princess Euphemia vi Britannia: always chipper; loves everyone; doesn't get angry even when people threaten her with death, which happens more often than you might think. To the annoyance of her family, she takes bolder and bolder steps to fight anti-Eleven (that is, anti-Japanese) prejudice, and eventually she even sacrifices her place in the royal line of succession to give herself the leverage to make an attempt at lasting peace between Britannia and Japan / Area Eleven. (Naturally, things don't go well for her.) She also places herself in danger for the sake of others on no less than three key occasions.
    • Shirley Fennette. Unlike Euphemia, Shirley generally avoids discussions of politics and current events, but like her, she actively and bravely opposes prejudice and cruelty whenever and wherever she sees it; she feels tenderness toward pretty much everyone; she can't bear to see anyone get hurt; and she's nearly always chipper—except when jealous (back to that in a moment) or when things are going really, seriously wrong. Admittedly, she gets upset whenever she suspects her beloved "Lulu" of liking another girl more than her—which is often—but even then, she's never mean, just, at worst, sullen and gloomy. Shirley is a bit how Euphie might have turned out had Euphie not been stuck as a princess of the world's greatest superpower. (Naturally, things don't go well for her, either. Then ... things don't go well for her, all over again.)
    • Princess Nunnally, Lelouch's younger sister and reason for living—and, though she has no idea, for killing. Like her older half-sister Princess Euphemia, she's always chipper, always ready to think the best of everyone. Unlike Lelouch, she has no interest in revenge against her family (or anyone else) for the many ways they have wronged her; she just hopes the world will become a nicer place, where Britannians and Japanese can live side by side in peace, and she can return to the family that has betrayed her. (You can probably guess where this is going.)
    • Rule of Three indeed, though, since ultimately Nunnally comes to rule over Britannia and remake it into a good nation.
  • Red from Pokémon Special. He accepts old foes (that practically tried to kill him) through Enemy Mine situations a little too easily. His Messiah-ness is most prevalent in the FLRG arc, where he readily accepts Deoxys since it shares his blood, even though it nearly massacred his team.
    • Dia shows some messianic traits, as when he calls out Cyrus for trying to destroy all of existance with a simple yet very heartfelt speech, Dialga and Palkia decide that they'd rather listen to him than Cyrus and earlier his own courage inspired Regigigas to fight Team Galactic as his teammate!
  • Hareta in Pokémon Diamond and Pearl. He apparently feels little-to-no hatred toward anyone, including Complete Monster's, and cares for everyone. Your best friend's life was made miserable by these guys, she's probably dead due to being Driven to Suicide, and this guy plans to destroy the whole world? Pff, no problem. Hareta just sheds some Tender Tears-Manly Tears and brushes it off.
  • Yuuna from Anime/Stitch
  • Astro Boy from Astro Boy.
  • Nadja from Ashita no Nadja.
  • Aoi from Ai Yori Aoshi. She loves everyone, and everyone loves her.
  • Rock from Black Lagoon (which explains one of the WMGs about him). Since he lives in a Crapsack World, the universe tries to punish him for being this.
  • Candy White Andree of Candy Candy. She loves everyone, and almost everyone loves her.
  • Hime Utsumiya of Brain Powerd.
  • Dorothy in Clear Qualia. She sees the good in everyone, and she is willing to give an eye to save a Plastica.
  • Dai of Dai no Dai Bouken. He is valued for this.
  • Riquinni Nonderaiko plays this trope as far as the dual-nature rigidity of the film will allow.
  • Kenji, after his return, becomes a messiah in 20th Century Boys. He manages to save the world by travelling around singing a song (which in turn makes legions of people idolise and follow him), kills a grand total of no one and even apologizes to the Complete Monster Big Bad for a past misdeed.
    • His attitude is much more Be All My Sins Remembered and somewhere between bemused and irritated that people are looking to him to save the day.
    • Kanna also becomes a messiah as well as the story progresses.
  • Toboe from Wolfs Rain. He's about the closest thing a predatory animal can get to a Friend to All Living Things, and, as a clincher, he's willing to protect and die for the guy who's actively trying to exterminate wolves!
  • Nao from Liar Game, who is incredibly selfless and honest and willing to use the money that she has won to pay off the debts of people who had previously schemed, lied and tricked her. Her reason for continuing in the game is to essentially save everyone in the game.
  • Tokidoki Rikugou of Amatsuki is either this or is taking the positive shell of Stepford Smiler to extremes. He has gotten in trouble trying to help other people several times, with devastating consequences for him and his friends, but he still keeps it up.
  • Maria Osawa of Canaan.
  • Pfil of Bondage Fairies.
  • In Koi Cupid, Ai can connect to almost anyone, and her greatest wish is to be friends with people. She even warmed a demon's heart.
  • Yumi Fukuzawa from Mariasama ga Miteru. Everyone who isn't charmed by Yumi within an episode is either a Jerkass one-shot character, or a Designated Part of a Romantic Two-Girl Friendship with a Jerkass Facade.
  • Nausicaa, from the Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind manga/anime quoted above, fits this trope to a T. Besides being nearly a Purity Sue, she explicitly plays the foretold role of a Messiah by wearing blue garments (stained with Ohmu blood) and walking on a "field of gold" (a bunch of shiny Ohmu tentacles). The Dorok priest has a revelation that she is the "Angel of Light" who will lead the people to the "Pure Land."
    • An example: In a scene near the beginning of the manga she meets a cute squirrel-creature. It bites her hand, but she just smiles at it as it gets the biting out of its system, then feeds it. And the next thing you know it's her cute animal companion.
  • Yusei from Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's is this even more so than his predecessors, despite his quiet and more mature nature. Hs father named him after a particle that bonded other particles together, because he wanted Yusei to be able to bond people together. And he did.
  • Mayoi Neko Overrun's Otome Tsuzuki. She brings in stray orphans, travels around the world, and is generally a force of derring-do and near impossible feats.
  • Yuki of Uragiri wa Boku no Namae wo Shitteiru.
  • Ouran High School Host Club's Suou Tamaki is an exceptionally compassionate, friendly, and forgiving person with an often annoyingly optimistic outlook on life. All the Host Club members have him to thank for some of the positive changes in their lives. He's extremely genuine and can find the beauty in even the most ordinary thing or person—his compliments toward the girls he hosts or runs into are all honest. Despite his grandmother's verbal abuse toward him he remains motivated to earn her acceptance of him.
  • Ayase of Okane ga Nai. He forgives everyone, he cares for everything and everyone, and he will do anything he can to make someone happy.
  • Drago from Bakugan.
  • Honoka from The Third the Girl With The Blue Eye. Literally.
  • The post- Character Development Setsuna F. Seiei in Mobile Suit Gundam 00.
  • Kira "Jesus" Yamato in Gundam Seed. His girlfriend, Lacus Clyne, combines this trope with Guile Hero for interesting results. As for Chairman Durandal...? He thinks he's this trope, but in truth he's more of a Dark Messiah.
  • Kyrie from World Destruction fits this to a T. Kind, gentle, and not wanting to fight anyone, he's always trying to find a way to talk things out instead of going on killing sprees like Morte wants to do. He thinks of everyone around him before thinking about himself (which Toppi lampshades this in the manga that Kyrie would give him the water bottle despite the fact he was thirty AND wandering the desert for three days straight.) Enforced and deconstructed in the manga where when he leaves the group, everyone splits up with Toppi and Naja going with him and leaving Morte and Agan behind after Morte crossed the Moral Event Horizon by blowing an entire village up with innocent people.
  • Haruka, the main character of the manga Agape. It's explicitly said that her "talent" is unconditional love for everyone, even criminals, demonstrated when she immediately forgives and even comforts a man who had just killed her father. For this reason she is sought out by a special negotiations team.
  • Noelle from Tenshi ni Narumon is pure beyond pureness, loves everyone (especially Yuusuke) and in the end saves everyone, especially the two most troubled individuals who caused her a lot of problems.
  • Madoka from Puella Magi Madoka Magica gave her existence to save the soul of every witch in time and space who fell.
  • The main character from Kimba the White Lion.
  • Misaki of Junjou Romantica spends his entire life caring and looking out for other people and will do whatever he can to help someone in trouble. This backfires more than once for him. The one character in the entire series who actively dislikes (and bullies) him, he thinks is his own fault. By the time he's finished his university course he discovers that he's spent so much time looking after everyone else that he has absolutely no idea what he wants to do with his life. ... Until someone suggests that he gets a job where he spends day after day looking after highly volatile authors and managing their fragile psychological health while trying to extract from them some sort of publishable artifact that could somehow be construed as a piece of prose - i.e. become an Editor.
  • Kamijou Touma from A Certain Magical Index, who just wants to protect everybody. Also, Orsola Aquinas, who forgives everybody.
  • One of Kotetsu's defining characteristics in Tiger and Bunny is that he cares about the safety and wellbeing of everyone—to the point that he'll be shaken even by the death of some nameless Asshole Victim.
  • The titular character of Cardcaptor Sakura seems to be this trope. She has a kind and cheery demeanor, she simply loves everyone—and it's stated several times that they love her back. She appears to be a firm believer in The Power of Friendship, and is also quite a bit of a Reluctant Warrior when she is forced to battle rather than befriend. She also has quite a streak for granting second chances, defrosting several ice kings, and wanting the best for her loved ones even if at her own expense—as illustrated by her actions toward Yue, Eriol, and Yukito in particular.
  • Zatch Bell fits this trope well, being not only a bewildered naive kid with amnesia of his own race, but actively seeks friendship to everyone around him that isn't trying to kill him. By the end of the series, his compassion and concern for all the other 98 mamodo children, and the demon world as a whole, allowed them to unanimously lend him their strength to finish off Clear Note
  • Mighty from Bomberman Jetters is perhaps the nicest person to ever grace any form of media ever. According to his grandmother, she could never figure out his likes and dislikes because of how selfless he was. Despite being regarded as a remarkably powerful and calculating being, he has almost never shown anger to anyone, responds to a death threat from his enemy with a serious polite greeting, and despite his power, tries his hardest to never resort to violence except as a last resort. To top it all off, after seeing his younger brother playing one day, he was convinced that he wasn't kind enough.
  • Ginta of MAR.
  • Nausicaa from Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. Though in this case, she is in fact an actual messiah figure (the Blue Clad One).
  • Also from Hayao Miyazaki, Ashitaka from Princess Mononoke fits this trope perfectly (in fact if he didn't, his curse would kill him).

Comic Books

  • Superman is always portrayed in this fashion.
  • Ditto Wonder Woman, who in addition to being one of the strongest warriors, is a walking avatar of love and peace. This is particularly emphasized during the Blackest Night miniseries, where her love for all things in existence, as lampshaded by both Aphrodite and Star Sapphire Carol Ferris, leads to her being recruited into the Star Sapphire Corps.
  • Captain America (comics). He is the Marvel counterpart of Superman after all.
    • At one point Magneto tried to erase his mind of all prejudice towards Mutants. Problem for Magneto: Captain America has no prejudice towards anybody.
  • Flycatcher, the frog prince of Fables, is universally kind and universally loved for it, and he's the only character who had no sins to absolve or remit under the Fabletown Amnesty. The Messiah Syndrome really kicks in when he receives a purity-powered suit of armor that allows him to resurrect the dead, defeat massive armies without spilling blood, and establish the completely peaceful "Kingdom of Haven" in the middle of enemy territory.
  • Death of the Endless is quite possibly the friendliest, most compassionate entity in the DC Universe. She loves you, no matter who you are or what you've done.
  • Zayne Carrick from Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic is a good example of a fool who is actually an embryonic messiah. Initially a failing Jedi Padawan whose only power seems to be literal good luck (as in, he spent an hour trying to catch a petty thief for the half-dozenth time, and thus arrived late to what should have been his own murder), over the course of the series he saves first himself; then a junk scavenger and his adopted daughter; then a bunch of captured Jedi; then several million people from an orbital nuclear bombardment; then he tries to save one of the Jedi masters who were trying to kill him. As one of them says:

"You...You... would save me?"

  • Saint Walker of the Blue Lanterns, specifically referred to as the Messiah of his homeworld. The worldwide hope that he inspired on his dying world was enough for him to be selected as the first to wield the Blue Light of Hope.
  • From the Marvel Comics series Agents of Atlas, Venus—hey, it befits a goddess of love!
  • Ice, of Justice League International, is noted for her optimism and kindness, which remain steadfast even in the face of her death and resurrection.
  • Professor Charles Xavier is a perfect example.
    • However, he also has a rather dark side.
  • Christopher Rudd in Lucifer: He's a damned soul in Hell who manages through skill and luck to become one of Hell's nobility. What you guess he does then? He teaches demons compassion and kindness, gets them and the damned to get along, and finally leads their army to save the Silver City and conquer it in one fell swoop in the name of justice.
  • Chubby Huggs from Get Fuzzy, he begins every day with hugging his pillow and thanking it for being so soft, and continues in the same way. Needless to say, Bucky is scared to death of Chubby Huggs.


  • Victor Laszlo in Casablanca. It says something about him that the only person in the entire movie who isn't in complete awe and admiration of the utterly heroic and saintly resistance leader and doesn't think he's the greatest thing since the invention of bread, sliced or otherwise, is the Nazi officer who has been sent to capture him, which is a ringing endorsement if ever there was one. He's so noble that he doesn't even hold a grudge that his beloved wife, believing that he was dead, has fallen in love with another man, and his example is so powerful that that other man is eventually quite willing to sacrifice his one chance at happiness by convincing her to stay with him.
  • Sergeant Elias K. Grodin from Platoon which makes his dramatic death scene all the more powerful.
  • William Wallace from Braveheart. Think about it: He inspired not only his country but most of the people he meets either fought for their freedom or become strong influential. Also he died so he can become free, reunite with his love one, and let the rest of the people to live on as free men.
  • WALL-E.[context?]
  • Happy Feet. Ironically.
  • Po from Kung Fu Panda is another great example he is an idiot, a fool and a chosen one, but what really makes him a Messiah is that he doesn't hate anybody, Not even Shen Who killed his parents, and trying to kill him, and yet he still forgave by telling to let go of the past.
  • Moses from The Prince of Egypt is more of a Messiah Creep because he started as a Spoiled Brat to a profit, but still his most messianic moment was when He told Rameses to Let his People Go. AND it's the story of Moses after all.
  • Lady in the Water features as a secondary character a writer who, it is revealed, will in the future become The Messiah by writing a work so universally beloved and inspirational that it will inspire someone to make the world a better place, and who will eventually die in order to save us from ourselves. By itself, not that bad. However, writer-director M. Night Shyamalan chose to cast himself in this role. This caused eyebrows to be raised.
    • He more puts himself in the roll of the Biblical John the Baptist. Someone who prepares the way for a true leader to come forth and bring about a new world. Not quite as egocentric but still not a good sign for his self perception.
  • Poppy from Happy-Go-Lucky. It was half the point of the movie.
  • Luke Skywalker in Star Wars. Expanded Universe may differ, but consider that upon discovering his father is a Sith Lord and one of the galaxy's most ruthless killers, he decides—against the advice of everyone—that Dad can be saved from the Dark Side. He turns out to be right.
    • For the Star Wars Expanded Universe, Luke was this in the early years, but not since the Legacy era, where he is even seen advocating for torture. The Messiah mantle seems to have been passed on to his son Ben, who wants to redeem people who his father would rather just kill. Ben's Sith girlfriend even explains to Luke how he's Not So Different from them.
    • Anakin Skywalker/ Darth Vader could be a more traditonal messiah, basically becoming a sith, and then killing the emperor (at that time the last other sith) and himself, Heroic Sacrfice and all.
  • The eponymous character of The Golden Child.
  • Charlie from the Tim Burton remake of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory.
  • Shuya in Battle Royale. It's a strange place to find a character of this type, but he does love his classmates.
  • Philip Swift from Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.
  • Unforgiven: His late wife Claudia was – is – this for William Munny… in all the extension he can be saved.


  • Discworld:
    • Carrot Ironfoundersson. He gets an idea in his head and is able to drag the rest of the world around to his viewpoint. Even to the point that he's able to arrest a dragon which had previously been terrorizing the city. His love interest Sergeant Angua (an Action Girl), and Commander Vimes both remark upon this ability of his. In Carrot's case, it may be because he is the true and lawful heir to the throne of Ankh-Morpork.
    • Discworld also has Brutha, in Small Gods, the last true believer of the Great God Om. His sheer basic decency extends to everyone from tortoises to the Big Bad, twice and he brings in a new and more tolerant era for his Corrupt Church.
  • Bobby from the Pendragon series. He seems to be able to make friends with all of travelers in every world in a matter of minutes of meeting them. And, it was said on more then one occasion he would be the only one to beat Saint Dane. He does.
  • Andy Dufresne, the main character of Stephen King's story Rita Hayworth and The Shawshank Redemption is The Messiah of the story, which is remarkable considering the near hopeless circumstances that he finds himself in (one might even interpret him as The Woobie). There are several symbolic parallels between him and Jesus Christ which shape the entire message of the book, that "hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things and no good thing ever dies".
  • The titular character of Harry Potter.
  • Alyosha, the third and youngest of The Brothers Karamazov, loves all and is loved by all. Dostoevsky uses an entire chapter to illustrate how it would be impossible to not trust him. Everyone—and we mean everyone -- in the book confides in Alyosha, and at times these discussions seem to resemble a priest taking confession. The story in the Bible of Jesus Christ being tempted in the desert by the devil has its parallels in some of Alyosha's discussions. For bonus points, he starts off as a novice monk in the nearby monastery. This was almost Subverted, however: Fyodor Dostoevsky intended to write a full-length version of The Gambler with Alyosha (= Alexei) in place of Alexei Ivanovich, followed by a third novel redeeming him.
  • Also by Dostoevsky: Sofya from Crime and Punishment, anyone?
  • Again from Dostoevsky: Prince Lev Nikolaievich Myshkin from The Idiot is a much darker interpretation of this character type. Myshkin himself is, of course, kind and full of love for humanity—which leads most everyone he meets to assume he's a fool and try to take advantage of him. Then Myshkin himself ends up hurting Aglaya when a climactic Moral Dilemma forces him to choose between his love for Agalya and his pity for the fallen Nastasya.
  • The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant: Everybody in The Land except Thomas Covenant, the bad guys and the Bloodguard is, personality-wise, The Messiah.
  • In Anne Bishop's Black Jewels trilogy, Jaenelle is the most recent (and implied to be the most powerful ever) incarnation of Witch, essentially born from the collective dreams of the races who facilitates their reconciliation and eventually nearly kills herself in order to save her people.
  • In The Lord of the Rings, Both Frodo and Aragorn's attachment to the other members of the Fellowship, as well as a large number of people they encounter during the books, qualifies them for this trope.
  • Elua in the Kushiel's Legacy novels by Jacqueline Carey. Christ himself, albeit sporting a different name, is also in the series, but the religion of the main characters focuses on Elua. (Born of a mixture of Yeshua ben Yosef's blood and the Magdalene's tears, flowers arose where he walked, seven angels descended from Heaven to be his travelling companions, etc.) His single commandment to the race of people descended from him and his angelic followers was "love as thou wilt".
  • Adil, one of the main characters in Sahar Khalifeh's Wild Thorns. A Palestinian who works in Israel (the book was written in the 70s') to support his nine family members, and always looking out for his fellow workers. He's more than once described as trying "to solve the Middle East conflict all by himself." Even his cousin who considers him a traitor for working in Israel cares strongly about him.
  • Rand Al'Thor in The Wheel of Time is a fantastic deconstruction of both this trope and The Chosen One.
    • He gets reconstructed near the end.
  • Eriond in The Belgariad and The Malloreon. He's a small child in the former, although he is very trusting and generous. (He's been raised to be a complete innocent, so that he can handle The Orb, which tends to destroy anyone who touches it with less than completely pure motives.) By The Malloreon he's grown into the position. He's very mild in temperament, and even when he gets very angry (at one point they're in a Temple of Torak and a major sacrifice ritual (human, of course) is going on all he does is put out the temple fires—since if the hearts can't be burned, there's no way to continue the sacrifices.)
  • Finny in A Separate Peace, who never sees anyone as an enemy, and believes that "when you really love something, then it has to love you back, in whatever way it has to love." Many readers (and English teachers) see him as a Christ figure.
  • Mike in Robert A. Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange Land. He's a walking Jesus allegory, but beside that he has an innocence so strong it even scares people a bit.
  • Les Misérables: Jean Valjean, who in turn learned forgiveness from the Bishop of Digne after 19 years of prison made Valjean bitter and hateful.
  • Samuel Pickwick, Esq. from The Pickwick Papers. It's the main reason he's funny.
  • Cassie from Animorphs, who spends the most time grappling with the ethics of lethal force out of the entire team.
  • Ender's Game: Ender Wiggin. Loves everyone, including the Buggers he's trying to kill. His friends semi-worship him.
  • Aerich Tenma of the Dragaera-verse.
  • Goldmoon in Heroes of the Lance, a Dragonlance book.
  • Luke Skywalker, in Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor. Nick Rostu, who was previously mind-controlled and begged Luke to kill him - but was instead saved - has the chance to blow away thirty-some innocent mind-controlled men and women to rescue Luke and return the favor, and he hesitates

because he had an overpowering intuition: if Luke Skywalker thought he might save thirty innocent lives by sacrificing his own, he wouldn't hesitate. Ten innocent lives.
"Or, hell, one not-so-innocent life," Nick muttered. "Like mine." He flipped the carbine's power setting to stun. "I hate Jedi."

    • Throughout that book, even when Luke is struggling with despair and mental trauma, he's consistently kind and compassionate to anyone not currently attempting to kill him. When someone is expressing their claustrophobia, he's completely sympathetic to them despite believing he's been through far worse himself. At the end, when to save the day he needs to destroy a mind-control device knowing that doing so will kill the fifty thousand enemies being mind controlled, he does so, but in the Force he stays with all of them to feel them die, so that they won't die alone. And because it's all he can do for them.
  • Sorahb in the Farsala Trilogy is supposed to be this, but the trope is subverted in that he never actually shows up- the person everyone believes is him is actually an ordinary man named Fasal.
  • Jane Bennet in Pride and Prejudice.
  • Tavi definitely wants to be this in Codex Alera, though he does his smiting less with brute force and more with Crazy Awesome strategy and adaptation. If he were the son of a deity it undoubtedly would be a god of chaos. Actually, he's just the son of the First Lord, which winds up giving him near-godlike furycraft. From a near-godlike fury.
  • Mendel Shpilman, in The Yiddish Policemen's Union by Michael Chabon. Literally. Until he went with being a crackhead instead.
  • John Coffey from The Green Mile
  • Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea: Professor Aronnax is a humble Wide-Eyed Idealist scientist who'd already won the Undying Loyalty of Conseil before he comes to the Nautilus. He also causes Idiot Hero Ned Land to do a More Expendable Than You sacrifice when they are in the Pole, and he is ultimately the reason why Captain Nemo gets his Villainous Breakdown when Aronnax discovers the Nautilus is a Weapon of Mass Destruction..
  • Sword of Truth: |Richard Rahl lives and breathes this trope. He's deeply moralistic (at least early on), believes strenuously in the freedom he's fighting for (to the point of not leading armies because they're fighting for him, not for freedom), and everyone he meets falls into lockstep with him, even bitter enemies.
    • In fact, there are only a few select groups of people that permanently reject him. Darken, Drefan, and Oba Rahl, the Sisters of the Dark, the Blood of the Fold, the Imperial Order leadership, the Slide, and the Anders. Over 10,000+ pages.
    • For everyone else, the books go to great effort to repeatedly remind the reader that everyone likes Richard and that he unites people simply by being Richard.
    • It also helps that he's the Chosen One and a hilariously-powerful wizard, and the Seeker of Truth (with all of the combat prowess inherent to the position).
    • As the Imperial Order's evil becomes more and more of an issue in the series, Richard actually becomes more of a militant leader and less of this.

Live-Action TV

  • Daniel Jackson in Stargate and Stargate SG-1. No surprise that later, by the end of the fifth season, he evolves into a Messianic Archetype as well.
  • Dr. Molly Clock in Scrubs.
  • Peter Petrelli of Heroes embodies this to a point that's almost Genre Blindness or even Idiot Ball. He's so sweet and trusting that he'll even cast his lot in with the villain if he has a convincing enough sob story.
  • Flash Gordon from the Sci-Fi channel TV adaptation is very much The Messiah, whose idealism and altruism inadvertently manages to bring together several tribes of highly eccentric crazies (including multiple members of the Big Bad's faction), who've spent decades hating each other.
  • The Doctor(s) from Doctor Who all have elements of this trope. Each of the Doctors is not universally loving or necessarily even all that nice, but they will go to any lengths to right a wrong that they've just stumbled on. Further, they both have a powerful draw on everyone else. Evil characters obsess over them; good characters leave their lives behind to join them, and often end up making even bigger sacrifices.
    • Ten in particular has been pulling this one, both playing it straight and subverting. Generally characters either adore him within ten minutes, are terrified/in awe of him, or want to kill him. Occasionally all three. One quote from the episode "Last of the Time Lords" makes this painfully clear about the Doctor. "You wouldn't listen. Because you know what I'm going to say... I forgive you."
      • This is shown very clearly by the lines of the Chameleon Circuit song 'Regenerate Me'; " King of Sacrafice, and Bearer of Justice/ I am your last chance to repent!"
      • Though occasionally Ten takes this too far.
    • Eleven too is written to be extremely compassionate, especially when he's infatuated with someone (actually one man plus one woman by default). Amy Pond is usually the woman, and Eleven seems to love her the most. Eleven's allies are devoted to him as Ten's were. Rory even dies to save Eleven, and ends up getting Ret Conned out of existence.
  • Constable Benton Fraser from Due South makes himself something of a local hero in the slum neighborhood of Chicago he lives in, unwittingly and unerringly winning the hearts of nearly everyone around him due to his constant, unwavering kindness to his fellow man. His partner, Ray Vecchio (and later Ray Kowalski), his friends, and even his boss are fiercely protective of him when danger arises. His lack of street smarts and general naievete can cause problems, though, and they sometimes wonder about his sanity.

Fraser: You mean you're using some promotional ploy to get something for nothing?
Ray: Welcome to the United States of America, Fraser.

  • Despite being an atoning petty criminal and Jerkass, and a Book Dumb hick, the titular character of My Name Is Earl has a real knack for getting along with people, is actively working hard to become a better person by righting all his past wrongs, in the process making his town a better place, and is willing to make great sacrifices for the people he cares about. Sometimes he relapses, but he brings up some interesting questions on morality and what makes a good person.
  • Fred Rogers is famous for being one of the nicest people ever, both on his show and off.
  • Abby Cadabby. Her faith in Oscar the Grouch's heart is unshakable.
  • Hakuya Ryouga / AbaRed of Bakuryuu Sentai Abaranger. He was immune to the mind-screwing abilities of a Monster of the Week specifically because, in his niece's words, "he doesn't hate anyone or anything." Naturally, evil Ranger Nakadai Mikoto does everything in his power to crush the idealism out of him, but Ryouga never stops believing that Mikoto can be redeemed - and he's proven right.
  • Most of the Ultraman fall under this.
  • Gentaro Kisaragi, Kamen Rider Fourze, who in his introduction stated his goal to befriend each and every single person in his new high school. This includes forgiving someone for throwing away a girl's love letter, and being nice to the Jerk Jock "king" and Alpha Bitch "queen" of the school despite their harassment (both verbal and physical).
    • He'll even do it with the Monster of the Week. You have to be a Complete Monster for him to not make a serious attempt at getting a villain to amend his ways. Pyxis, the guy who is the reason Fourze has a Nightmare Fuel page is the only person he's not extended a hand of friendship to.
  • Parks and Recreation: Leslie Knope is such a generous, thoughtful, hardworking person, and so beloved by her friends and co-workers, that she might as well be characterized as the Messiah from Pawnee.
  • Inverted in Tokumei Sentai Gobusters. Messiah is the name of the Big Bad.

Oral Tradition, Folklore, Myths and Legends

  • The Trope Namer is Jesus of Nazareth, from the Flanderized portrayal focusing on his exhortations to give and to forgive after time stripped them of their apocalyptic context.
  • Rama, in Ramayana. When a plot causes his rightful throne to go to his brother Bharata, Rama is delighted for his brother's good fortune, without any concern for his own loss of status. When he's exiled by this same plot, he has to talk the entire country (including Bharata) out of coming with him. He collects allies everywhere he goes, just by dint of his goodness. Rama and Sita are supposed to be the great lovers beyond time and space, but the effect is more that Rama loves everyone, everyone loves Rama, and Sita is a member of "everyone".

Tabletop Games

  • Nurgle of Warhammer Fantasy Battle and Warhammer 40,000 holds a deep, paternal love for all living things. Unfortunately for said living things, he thinks infecting them with horrific diseases is the best way to express that love, and considers their cries of anguish and despair a form of thanks for these "gifts."
    • One thing: bacteria, parasites - the things that cause diseases ARE living things. Nurgle loves every living thing equally and can't just kill those couple thousand bacteria that live within a sick person. That would be Something-cide!
  • Similarly, both Devils and Deceivers in the third edition of Nobilis explore why loving absolutely everything is not necessarily a virtuous trait, or one that leads to the other traits of The Messiah. The Devils love the laughter of children and the beauty of a sunset... but they also love cancer and genocide. In fact, they love cancer and genocide more, because who else is going to love them? As for the Deceivers... to make a long explanation short, let's just say that love doesn't have to be sane or healthy.

Video Games

  • On the subject of Final Fantasy:
    • Terra Branford form Final Fantasy VI is a clear example of this late in the game. In the World of Ruin, she ends up caring for orphans whose parents were murdered by Kefka and eventually Terra finds her purpose. To fight to protect those who need it as well as ensure a better future. Love drives her.
      • Celes Chere could also fit this trope in the World of Ruin portion of the game.
    • Aeris/Aerith from Final Fantasy VII. The idealistic one in a group of people who are technically terrorists, she winds up martyred for her cause and saving the planet in the end. Her "light in a dark place" role is obvious from the beginning, where she's hanging out in a church and somehow has flowers, sunshine and a nice little waterfall in the middle of the worst wretched hives on the planet.
    • Zidane Tribal from Final Fantasy IX is an example, despite the fact that he is a lecherous thief. His line in the game's character montage is "You don't need a reason to help people". In fact, multiple characters throughout the game actually complain about how kind Zidane is to everybody that he meets.
    • Final Fantasy X has Yuna. Every summoner has to have this to some degree to go on their pilgrimage in the first place, but Yuna takes it to a whole new level, never speaking harshly to anyone, while still exhibiting a quiet, subtle strength that keeps her going even after the church of Yevon brands her and her party traitors, once the truth comes out about the nature of the pilgrimage itself. Her speech to Yunalesca breaks it down perfectly.
  • Lloyd from Tales of Symphonia. He eventually transforms everyone in the party (and the world) for the better. He gives corny speeches explaining that everyone has the right to live freely, and inspires comments from his circle of friends on how softhearted, kind, strong, etc. he is.
    • Colette arguably fits the description even more, but due to Lloyd's main (and player) character status, she gets much less of a chance to shine.
    • Mithos, the legendary hero from the game's back story, was also a messiah. With his three companions and a belief in The Power of Friendship, he saved the world from a Magitek war. What subsequently happened to him is revealed later on in the game, and it's not pretty.
  • Captain Brenner/O'Brian from Advance Wars: Days of Ruin commands the remnants of a military unit in a post-apocalyptic earth, held together by his own leadership ability and charisma, and uses it to unconditionally rescue survivors and help people. After The Plot Reaper is through with him, main character Will/Ed picks up the torch as well.
  • Sora from Kingdom Hearts, who has friends all over the multiverse, and seems to hold them all in the same high regard. He even has an Empathic Weapon that runs on The Power of Friendship. How savvy of you, Square Enix!
    • It turns out, in fact, that he has a literal messianic role in-universe, even to the other people who use the same friendship-powered weapon.
  • Kyle Hyde of Hotel Dusk: Room 215 is something of a messiah who never planned to be. He only goes to the titular hotel on business with his company, Red Crown, and possibly to get a lead on the man he's been pursuing for three years, Brian Bradley. It turns out that all the other patrons of the hotel all have big problems tied to the hotel, Bradley, and the art theft organization he joined, Nile, including manager Dunning Smith, pining for his kidnapped daughter; Jeff Damon, who ran away from home with money and a gun after getting sick of his father's shady legal dealings; Kevin Woodward, trying to get his head around his malpractice suit and his wife somehow (through Nile) producing the money for a settlement; Helen Parker, searching for her lost son who loved to frequent the hotel; Martin Summer, who plagiarized that son's text for a novel and led to his disappearance and others. Through the course of one night at Hotel Dusk, Kyle Hyde manages to "take out [all of their] garbage" with evidence, questioning, and occasional tough love, and give them the strength to keep working to resolve their problems. He doesn't even want to arrest the person he's looking for despite what he did, he just wants to ask him "why?".
  • The Main Characters of Persona 3 and Persona 4 can both qualify if played properly. In addition to helping almost all of the individuals they meet overcome their crippling emotional and psychological issues, they both employ the Power of Friendship with the following means:
  • Ion from Tales of the Abyss. Luke eventually too, but to a lesser degree.
  • Talim from Soul Series. It's most obvious when you play as her as protagonist, but in any case, she actually doesn't like violence and tries to find peaceful solutions, fights unreservedly for what's right when she has to, and can usually be counted on to help her opponent up, full of concern for their well-being, when the fight is over. It's arguably enough to make you wish the plot were a bit deeper.
  • Yggdra Union has three. Yggdra, the titular character, becomes a wise and loving monarch over the course of the story; the main antagonist, Gulcasa, is one to his own people to the point of dying trying to save them in a really twisted and tragic way; and then there's Nessiah, Gulcasa's friend and tactician (and fallen angel, let's not forget), who is actually something of a fallen messiah figure—he was the real deal once, but he essentially had the idealism and love for all living things tortured out of him when he was thrown out of Asgard for refusing to fight in its wars.
  • Elly/Sophia from Xenogears who embodies selfless love and self-sacrifice across dozens of incarnations. At one point she even offers up her own flesh as food to a horde of mutated humans. What do you mean, "it's not symbolic?"
  • Jaina Proudmoore in the Warcraft series. She's probably the most basically decent person (that doesn't go crazy and try to kill everyone) in the entire series, even helping a race she was raised to hate kill her father for peace and to genuinely honor the bond that Theramore acquired with the orcs. This even carries into World of Warcraft where it seems everyone has taken a level in jerkass/incompetent.
    • Anduin Lothar was either this or Too Dumb to Live in Warcraft II, where he tried to negotiate peace with the orcs (who were still Exclusively Evil back then).
    • Prophet Velen also counts, considering he basically sees into the future and to alternate universes in order to guide his people
    • Any really major Badass that follows the light is this. considering that being The Messiah is pretty much being a perfect person in the view of the light
  • Stocke, the main character of Radiant Historia.
  • Erana from the Quest for Glory games is a powerful mage whose pure and loving influence has remained throughout the different lands even after she is gone, exuding peace and harmony, planting flowers and generally encouraging selfless good deeds. Also, she sealed away an Eldritch Abomination by sealing herself away with it, forever locked inside an icy tomb in order to ensure that the evil being never returned to the world. And you learn all this without even meeting her.
  • Wigglytuff from Pokémon Mystery Dungeon -- though there are Alternate Character Interpretations.
  • The Pikachu of Poke Park Wii. So cute and friendly, he unites the Pokemon with such love and friendship that it prevents a floating island from crushing their home.
  • Oror from Drakengard 2. So good, he might have been a Mary Sue-type if he hadn't been dead for three years at the beginning of the game.
  • Hijiri Byakuren, the final boss of the 12th in the Touhou series, Unidentified Fantastic Object, is identified as the "Youkai Messiah", a living Buddha who preaches peaceful co-existence with humanity. Of course, you end up having to fight her anyway, because that's just how they roll in Gensokyo.
  • Staying on the extreme high end of the morality scale in most BioWare RPGs will result in the Player Character coming across as one.
    • Open Palm Spirit Monk in Jade Empire, who can get a victory by sacrificing him/herself to the Big Bad for the good of the Empire.
    • The Lightside PC of Knights of the Old Republic, most obviously in his/her interactions with Juhani on Dantooine and with Bastila on the Star Forge.
      • Additionally, well, his/her Dark Side has been implied to try his best.
      • The Light-Side Exile in the sequels would probably be this, if not for, well...
    • Paragon Commander Shepard in the Mass Effect series. In contrast to the Renegade Shepard, a Paragon Shepard will do everything he/she can to help innocent people, fight injustice, and right wrongs. However, Paragon Shepard will happily give a verbal or even physical beatdown to someone who deserves it.
    • Dragon Age is notable as an exception, while there are usually 'right' options (getting Zathrian to let go of his hate and release the werewolves from their curse, destroying the Anvil of the Void and allowing Caridin to depart from his doomed existence, going out of your way to ensure that Eamon, Connor, and Isolde all survive), almost every choice is in the grey area and many seemingly 'right' decisions (backing the honest, honorable dwarven lord over the fratercidal tyrant of a Prince, helping a dwarven girl go off to study on the surface) have far-reaching and negative consequences ( destroying dwarven civilization, setting the stage for a Chantry crusade against the dwarves).
    • One of the saddest parts of Dragon Age II is no matter how much of a Messiah Hawke ends up being, he/she still looses his/her family, tears Kirkwall apart twice, and sets the stage for Thedas' first world war.
  • Shing Meteoryte from Tales of Hearts is a perfect example of this. He even goes as far as offering Creed, the Big Bad, a second chance.
  • Sera from the Digital Devil Saga. She's a Mysterious Waif in your party whose singing soothes demonic beasts.
  • Marona from Phantom Brave is a Pollyanna believes the best in everybody. Her kindness is not repaid.
  • Celice is seen as both this and The Chosen One in Fire Emblem Jugdral. Being a Shy Blue Haired Humble Hero, the prospect scares him at the beginning, but he eventually lives up to it.
    • In the backstory, the member of the Twelve Crusaders who fits the most is Blaggi the Arch bishop, who not only has a Holy Weapon able to resurrect the death (the Valkyrie Staff) but shows kindness even to the members of the Lopto Sect.
  • Fire Emblem Elibe has four straight-up examples, only one of them being a main character.
    • Princess Lilina from Fuuin no Tsurugi is always kind and compassionate, able to melt the hearts of everyone - even the brutally cynical Garret. She's specially sweet to Oujay and Gonzales, the second being an extreme Gonk who was hated by everyone.
    • Nino from Rekka no Ken not only managed to defrost her best friend and prospect husband Jaffar by nursing him back to health instead of killing him, but she's also unfailingly sweet and gentle to whoever she supports with, and cries when she has to face her adoptive family. The only person who doesn't get this privilege is Sonia, but well... this is Sonia we're talking about. And Nino did seek her approval until she learnt the truth about her.
      • There's also the main character, Eliwood. He goes through incredible hardships and not only he manages to retain about 80% of his idealism, but he refuses to hate the Big Bad even after he kills his father Elbert and causes the death of his prospect love interest Ninian and constantly shows sweetness to his troupe.
    • And in the backstory, the Seven Heroes of the Scourging have their own Messiah: Saint Elimine, their Magical Girl Warrior and Church Militant. She even founded both her own nation (Etruria) and her own religion (the Elimine church—which still goes strong after centuries)!
      • To drive the point even further, Fuuin mentions that according to her legend, Elimine never died. Once she believed her mission in life was over, she walked up to the top of a tower in the Etrurian capital of Aquleia and calmly ascended to a higher plane of existence. Said place is now known as the Tower of the Saint, and it houses her spellbook (Aureola) and her healing staff (Holy Maiden).
  • Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones gives us the almost unfailingly plucky, kind and sensible Princess Eirika of Renais. Even when her naivete sometimes gets the worst of her (like when Fomortiis in Lyon's body tricks her into giving him the Stone of Renais), Eirika keeps being sweet and gentle and willing to fight for the sake of Magvel. She also shows a spiritual side when talking to the local Badass Bookworm, Saleh, and comforts Princess L'Arachel when she gets depressed over the death of her parents when she was a little girl.
    • The aforementioned L'Arachel claims to be The Messiah and has been raised as a Church Militant, but she's more of a Love Freak. She does show genuine Messiah traits when she helps Eirika get over the Heroic BSOD caused by the Lyon/Fomortiiis incident described above, though.
  • StarCraft Tassadar who has ascended to this by the Protoss. Both figuratively and literally.
  • Aura from the .hack franchise.
  • Mithra from Asura's Wrath, who has shown no contempt for her imprisonment and immediately forgives her Uncle Yasha for going along with the plot of the Seven Deities.

Visual Novels

  • Mary in Shikkoku no Sharnoth, who will even cry for the monsters trying to kill her and beg M not to kill them. She's pretty tough when it comes down to it, though, but that attitude only strengthens with time.
  • Masayuki in A Profile refuses to see the bad in people and places. People don't really know how to treat him because of it. One the one hand, it's kind of admirable, but on the other it's very difficult to understand or, in some cases, to tolerate.
  • Deconstructed in Fate/stay night‍'‍s "Unlimited Blade Works" route. Shirou is a Messiah who lives by the creed of 'I will save everyone!' while Archer, a Dark Messiah, points out that even Shirou knows you can't save every single person, so Archer will help the maximum number of people possible... Throwing innocent people to the wolves when necessary to prevent a larger crisis. Archer is also Shirou's future self. Basically, you can follow the ideals of the Messiah but it's going to totally screw you up inside if you're not careful or don't have a clear reason to do so, and in any case it simply doesn't work if you follow the ideal exactly.
    • The biggest part of the Deconstruction is arguably Shirou's psyche. Basically, his personality and reason for existing was shattered when his parents and his entire life was destroyed in the fire ten years previously—being saved by Kiritsugu made his entire being revolve around that event, to the degree that Shirou has no sense of self and can only define himself by helping others, even if the recipients neither want, appreciate nor need his help.

Web Comics

  • Rikk from Fans.
  • Grace from - all together now - El Goonish Shive.
  • Maytag from Flipside
  • Axis Mundi is supposed to have at least two.
  • Mink from Dan and Mab's Furry Adventures.
  • Elan from The Order of the Stick. He didn't even kill Smug Snake Kubota and called V out when he/she did.
    • He probably gets that from his Mother, who is/was the sweetest, kindest person in his hometown
  • John from Homestuck. In a comic with some pretty heinous villains - and some pretty sketchy heroes - he stands out as the most cheerful, affable character, always willing to give people the benefit of the doubt.
    • Karkat starts out as a subversion and John's foil, being perpetually angry, derogatory, unforgiving, and just plain mean to everyone. Then it turns out that he's actually a decent guy who cares about others, was the only thing keeping the trolls all working together instead of killing each other, convinced villains to work in his best interest, and is ultimately the least threatening or dangerous member of his group. Played completely straight when he stops a rampaging murder clown with the power of hugs and it's revealed that his Ancestor was literal Jesus Christ figure.
      • Said ancestor started out as a messiah too, but became a Dark Messiah while being tortured to death.

Web Original

  • Shandala from Broken Saints fits this to a tee. Hell, pretty much all the tropes used in the description at the top of the page apply to her. Of course, when in the course of the story, it comes time for Break the Cutie, things get really ugly...
  • Neil Sinclair of Survival of the Fittest V3. No matter how many times he is knocked back by more cynical or pessimistic characters, he keeps on trying, time and again, to gather as many students he can in an attempt to escape. His hugely idealist approach includes but is not limited to inviting a classmate into the group who had previously killed one of the other members of his group - S.A.D.D. And now, his group has fallen apart after his death.

Western Animation

Wonder Woman (to villain, who has seemingly just killed Superman): I'm going to punch a hole through your head.
Flash: We don't do that to our enemies.
Wonder Woman: Speak for yourself.
Flash: I'm trying to speak for Superman.

Edward: Lazlo, why do you hate me?
Lazlo: I don't hate you, Edward. I love all creatures, even whatever you are!

  • In Ben 10: Alien Force, Ben Tennyson has borrowed not only Sailor Moon's Transformation Sequence but her steadfast refusal to sacrifice lives and her power to heal the villains' victims with the Empathic Weapon. He even once instantly handed over the MacGuffin with no hesitation to save his captured friends, just like Sailor Moon once did for Molly/Naru.
  • Rex from Generator Rex, despite his rebellious phase, and his sarcastic attitude, he is willing to risk his life to cure people with E.V.O, save people even when White Knight is going to kill them because they can't be cured Rex attacks instead. he helps people even pricks that he doesn't like. He even shows sympathy towards Anti-Villain Garan-Set, because he feels sorry.
  • Optimus Primal of Transformers Beast Wars and Beast Machines.
  • Waffle from Catscratch. He (a cat) even befriends a dog that hates cats.
  • Stickin' Around is noteworthy for having two messiahs as opposed to one. In this case, Stacy and Polly. Even if they have their moments of getting even with those around them (especially true for Stacy in regards to Bradley), these two are some of the more nicer girls you'll see in all of western animation, if not animated cartoons period.
  • Doug: Doug Funnie is one of the nicest characters in the show. He's loyal to his friends, nice to pretty much everyone, and is even nice to Roger. Yep.
  • The titular character of Jimmy Two-Shoes.
  • In Regular Show, Rigby's brother Don is overwhelmingly nice to everyone, even Rigby, who hates his guts for overshadowing him and unintentionally stealing his friends. When Rigby comes forward with his disposition towards his brother Don becomes upset because all he wanted was his brother's exceptance. Still, it is undebatable that Don would do anything for his little big brother or anyone else.
  • T.J., Mikey, Gus, Cornchip Girl, and Miss Grotke from Recess
  • Hey Arnold!!: Arnold. For that matter Lila, although she came off as an intentional Parody Sue.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: Pinkie Pie.
    • Doubted, Twilight Sparkle might qualifies more since she was the only one that didn't suffer Mind Rape from Discord and was the only was who saw imposter Candece. Granted, she did went nutso in "Lesson Zero". But that doesn't count.

Real Life

  • The book Strong Willed Child Or Dreamer? describes a personality type, dreamers, who are idealistic, sensitive, creative and empathetic. The Messiah seems to basically a dreamer taken Up to Eleven. This explains it nicely.
  • As mentioned above, Fred Rogers. Despite all the cruel and completely untrue rumors going around about him on the web, the man you saw on TV was exactly who he was in Real Life. Patient, optimistic, and kind-hearted. Despite being an ordained reverend, he never brought it up on his show or as a status symbol, and when asked to denounce homosexuals or other groups people didn't like, Mr. Rogers would politely decline, replying that "God loves you just the way you are."
  1. Much like Jesus, then - see Matthew 21:12-17, Mark 11:11-19, Luke 19:45-46, and John 2:13-16. So this doesn't disqualify her.