Imprinted Parent YKTTW Discussion

Imprinted Parent
A character, regardless of gender, is imprinted upon by an infant as its mother.
Motion To Discard Motion To Discard Needs Examples Tropeworthy?
(permanent link) added: 2011-08-23 18:38:14 sponsor: LEDbullet edited by: Oreochan (last reply: 2015-06-18 23:39:26)

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Bob and Alice are exploring a jungle and come across a weird egg. At some point, the egg hatches in Bob's hands, and a baby bird (or other somesuch creature) pokes its head out. It immediately sees Bob, and decides that Bob is its mother. For much of the rest of the adventure, it will fall upon Bob to gather food for and take care of the baby bird. At first he may not like it, or be embarrassed that he's the "Mom" and not the "Dad". Alice will find this very amusing. However, the baby will grow on Bob, and he may even come to defend it when something bigger threatens its life.


  • The trope name comes from the Super Mario World cartoon and Youtube Poop phrase of the same name, in which Luigi fulfilled this trope with an infant Yoshi.

  • Misty became this to Togepi in the Pokemon anime after it hatched from its egg.

  • An infant T-Rex imprinted upon the entire main cast of the Land Before Time series in one of the movies as its mothers. Given that throughout the series, "Sharptooth" dinosaurs are anything *but* friendly, this is quite amusing.

  • Metroid II: Return of Samus ends with the final, larval metroid doing this to Samus. It becomes a major part of the plot to the subsequent SNES game, Super Metroid.

  • Invoked in Jurassic Park (the film version anyway), where Hammond insists on being at every hatching so the baby dinos will imprint on him.

  • Horton Hatches The Egg: Justified in that sitting on the egg somehow changed its DNA into a birdephant; so in a sense Horton is partially its biological mother.

  • Seen in several Looney Tunes but I can't pinpoint which ones.

  • In the episode "That Darn Gator" of the Sam & Max cartoon, Max fishes a baby alligator out of a toilet and it imprints on him.
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