->''"I liked [''Manga/{{Bleach}}''] better when it was called ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'', and I liked ''that'' show better when it was called ''Anime/DragonBallZ''!"''
-->-- '''Vegeta''', ''WebVideo/DragonBallZAbridged''

It is common that some work is heavily "inspired" by a previous work--they may have different authors and settings, but there are strong similarities of plot, situations and characters. It is also common that the second work is much inferior to the original, because the original is great or the derivative is awful or both. The Better By A Different Name snarkly expresses this idea. The usual phrasing is "[This work] was better when it was called [other, earlier work]."

Though rarely this can be a compliment, such as noting that a good film also works as part of another series of films if you imagined it so.

Often overlaps with IfIWantedXIWouldY.

A SubTrope of TheyCopiedItSoItSucks, in that this trope is a common way to express that belief.

Compare TakeThat (to mock the referenced work), RecycledINSPACE (where a work is set in a new setting), SerialNumbersFiledOff (where a work cannot use the same setting names, but is suspiciously similar), and SpiritualSuccessor (where audiences consider the work to be nearly the same as a sequel, despite the SerialNumbersFiledOff).

!!Administrivia/InUniverseExamplesOnly (sorted by source of the comment instead of the subject):

[[folder: Comics ]]

* In a 1989 issue of Magazine/{{MAD}} Magazine, during the spoof [[Series/TwentyOneJumpStreet 21 Junkheap]], the cast of ''Series/TheModSquad'' makes a cameo pointing out that about 15 years ago, we did "just like these shmendricks are doing".
* In one ''Magazine/DoctorWhoMagazine'' "The Comic Assassins" strip by Steve Noble and Kev F. Sutherland, they watch "The Curse of Fenric" and have the following conversation.
-->'''Steve''': Hang on. An old war ... a brigadier ... We're not watching "Battlefield" by mistake, are we?
-->'''Kev''': Can't be. In "Battlefield" a stupid blue-faced monster appeared for no apparent reason and...
-->'''Ancient Haemovore''' ''(on screen)'' Hello, I am a stupid blue-faced monster.
-->'''Kev''': Oh, lordy...


[[folder: Literature ]]

* ''Literature/ThatIsAll'' has a semi-complimentary variant. John Hodgman writes that he was able to accomplish his goal of getting ''Series/TheAdventuresOfBriscoCountyJr'' back on the air (a goal he had stated in his previous book, ''Literature/MoreInformationThanYouRequire''), except he had nothing to do with it and the show is now called ''Series/BurnNotice''.

[[folder: Live Action TV ]]
* This was one of Creator/DavidSpade's trademark bits on ''Series/SaturdayNightLive''. In his last season it got turned around on him, when host Creator/TeriHatcher told him she liked his then-current movie ''Film/BlackSheep1996'' better when it was called ''Film/TommyBoy''.
** And there's this (slightly HilariousInHindsight):
-->Saw the movie ''[[Film/ANewHope Star Wars]]'' this weekend. It's about people flying through space being chased by Darth Vader and storm troopers. I really liked this movie the first time I saw it when it was called "Franchise/StarWars"! ... Oh, wait.

[[folder: Music ]]
* Music/MitchBenn liked Russia's 2008 entry for the Series/EurovisionSongContest better when it was by Cat Stevens and called ''Wild World''.
* Music/{{Voltaire}}'s song "U.S.S. Make Shit Up":
--> I was stranded on the ''[[Series/StarTrekVoyager Voyager]]''\\
And pounding on the door\\
When suddenly it dawned on me--\\
I'd seen this show before!\\
Perhaps I'm in a warp bubble\\
And slightly out of phase\\
Coz it was way back in the sixties\\
When they called it ''Series/LostInSpace''!
* "He has a woman's name and wears makeup. How original."
-->--Music/AliceCooper, discussing Music/MarilynManson

[[folder: Other ]]
* A magazine gave a breakdown of the {{Summer Blockbuster}}s of 1997. They discuss how ''Disney/{{Hercules}}'' did only moderately well compared to other recent works of the Franchise/DisneyAnimatedCanon, and they surmised people thought it was done better when it was called ''Disney/{{Aladdin}}''.
* Creator/RogerEbert: "All bad movies have good twins, and the good version of ''Film/GoodbyeLover'' is ''Film/TheHotSpot''... a thriller that was equally lurid but less hyperkinetic."
** He said the same anything with ''Film/SayAnything'' (GREAT!) and ''Film/ShesOutOfControl'' (HORRIBLE!), both of which opened on the exact same day (April 14th, 1989).
* A diversion in an [[http://www.sfx.co.uk/2012/02/25/isn%E2%80%99t-it-about-time-you-gave-armageddon-another-chance/ online]] ''SFX'' article, giving the cases for and against ''Film/{{Armageddon}}''.
-->'''Case for the defence:''' The science in ''Armageddon'' is no more wacky than it is in something like ''Film/FantasticVoyage'' and -- let's face it -- considerably more sensible than the science presented in ''Film/SourceCode''.\\
'''Case for the prosecution:''' Hey, I liked ''Source Code''!\\
'''Case for the defence:''' I liked it better 20 years ago when it was called ''Series/QuantumLeap''.\\
'''Case for the prosecution:''' Touché.
* Given ''Film/{{Aliens}}'' draws a lot from ''Literature/StarshipTroopers'', Creator/JamesCameron said that once he knew of Paul Verhoeven's plans he thought: "Why are they making [[Film/StarShipTroopers a Starship Troopers film]]? I already did it!".
* Scott Kurtz of ''Webcomic/PvP'' once joked that his favorite stories in ComicBook/AtomicRobo were the issues done by [[{{Comicbook/Hellboy}} Mike Mignola]].


[[folder: Web Original ]]

* Used in [[http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=xSt0jd0zL7g this video]] of ''WebVideo/DragonBallZAbridged''.
-->'''Nappa:''' I'd rather watch ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'', Vegeta.\\
'''Vegeta:''' Oh, please! [[IfIWantedXIWouldY If I wanted to watch over a hundred episodes of]] {{Filler}}, I'd watch ''Manga/{{Inuyasha}}''.\\
'''Nappa:''' What about ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'', Vegeta? It's like us, ''[[RecycledInSPACE with swords]]''!\\
'''Vegeta:''' I liked that show better when it was called ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'', and I liked ''THAT'' show better when it was called ''DRAGON BALL Z''!
* In [[http://omohide.com/181/maison-ikkoku-review-what-makes-a-good-anime/ this review]], ''Manga/LoveHina'' is said to have been better when it was called ''Manga/MaisonIkkoku''.
* A ''WebAnimation/ZeroPunctuation'' review for ''VideoGame/{{Painkiller}}'' says that it's often called the Unofficial ''VideoGame/{{Doom}} 3'' "since the actual ''Doom 3'' tripped over something in the dark, banged its head, and forgot it wasn't ''VideoGame/SystemShock''".
** He also noted that ''VideoGame/{{BioShock|1}}'' was "not 'like' ''System Shock 2'', it '''[[SerialNumbersFiledOff IS]]''' ''System Shock 2''", though he didn't make a quality judgement either way.
** He does it again in his review for [[VideoGame/DantesInferno Dante's Inferno]]:
-->"So all in all you could swap out the disc for God of War 2 while the player pops out for a piss and there's a good chance they won't notice. That is, until they realize that the game has suddenly become ''good''."
* Website/RottenTomatoes' [[http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/duplex/ consensus]] on ''Film/{{Duplex}}'': "It was funnier when it was called ''Film/ThrowMommaFromTheTrain''."
* WebVideo/TheNostalgiaChick does this a lot:
** She notes that ''Film/SpiceWorld'' is a movie with at half the ambition of ''Film/AHardDaysNight'', a quarter of the budget and at least two percent of the talent.
** On ''Disney/TheLittleMermaidIIReturnToTheSea,'' which she notes is a total rehash of the first movie: "I'm no fan of the original, but I hate to say it, I liked this better when it was called ''Disney/TheLittleMermaid''. ({{Beat}}) [[NonIndicativeTitle And it was about a mermaid]]."
** Inverted in her review of ''Film/TheCraft''. She called ''Film/MeanGirls'' an unofficial remake of that film, only PlayedForLaughs, without the witchcraft, and a much better film for it.
** "The thing is, they already made [[WesternAnimation/TheLorax this movie]] successfully. It was called ''WesternAnimation/WallE''."
** "I liked [[Film/WhatWomenWant this movie]] a lot more he first time they made it, when it starred Creator/BillMurray. And was called ''Film/GroundhogDay.''" She then goes on to describe how both use MagicalRealism to create similar plot and character arcs, except that ''Film/WhatWomenWant'' is a lot more shallow and forced.
* ''WebVideo/VampireReviews'':
** [[VampireVannabe Maven]] says that the ''Film/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'' movie is basically ''Film/{{Clueless}}'' with monsters, but that the latter at least makes most of its characters likable.
** At the end of her review of ''Film/TheFearlessVampireKillers'', she said that, if one wants a similar horror-comedy about vampires that isn't tainted by Creator/RomanPolanski's rape charges, they should watch ''Film/WhatWeDoInTheShadows'' instead.
* Creator/BobChipman:
** A week after reviewing ''Film/JennifersBody'' (in the appendix to his review of ''Film/{{Surrogates}}''), he compared said film to ''Film/GingerSnaps'', which he called the good version of that movie.
** He had [[https://moviebobcentral.com/2005/02/27/review-cursed/ previously said]] the same thing about ''Film/{{Cursed 2005}}'', ending his scathing review by providing a link to ''Ginger Snaps''[='=] Website/IMDb page and telling everybody to go watch that film instead.
** Inverted in his review of ''Disney/{{Zootopia}}'', which he compared to Creator/{{Disney}} trying its hand at a Creator/{{DreamWorks|Animation}}-style animated movie, specifically calling it "what one of these would look like [[TakeThat if they didn't suck]]."
** Discussing ''Film/BatmanVSupermanDawnOfJustice'' in [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8BPzCvrxLY Part II]] of his ''Really That Bad'' episode regarding said film, he opined that ''Film/CaptainAmericaCivilWar'' handled the same idea of a hero-on-hero punch-up movie much better.
** While reviewing ''Proud Mary'', he referred to ''Film/SmokinAces'' as "''Film/SuicideSquad2016'' but, like, good."
* In [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8LdCophxHgk Kaiba's Real Father - Conclusion]] on ''WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries''
-->'''Kaiba:''' Was that a [[WebVideo/DragonBallZAbridged Dragon Ball Z]] cameo? Geez, knowing my luck, my father's going to turn out to be Ghost Nappa. That's pretty much how these things usually go.\\
'''Mokuba:''' Aaaahh, but you gotta admit, Seto, Nappa sure is funny!\\
'''Kaiba:''' Yeah, I liked him better when he was called "Tristan".
* A couple times in ''Website/{{Cracked}}'':
** "I saw ''Film/TheMatrix'' back when it was called ''Film/DarkCity''." This is the example given for #4 of [[http://www.cracked.com/blog/6-common-movie-arguments-that-are-always-wrong/ 6 Common Movie Arguments That Are Always Wrong]].
** Another writer's article claims ''Film/HomeAlone'' and ''Film/DieHard'' are [[http://www.cracked.com/funny-4445-home-alone/ the same movie]], although they don't seem to mean this as a value judgment on either film. [[note]]For those not keeping track, Cracked has multiple writers and no guarantee they'll agree with each other. That, and it runs on RuleOfFunny, not Rule Of Accuracy.[[/note]]
** In ''[[http://www.cracked.com/blog/4-recent-films-that-are-accidentally-sequels-to-80s-movies/ 4 Recent Films That Are Accidentally Sequels to 80s Movies]]'' they say;
*** ''Film/BlueValentine'' is a sequel to ''Film/SayAnything''.
*** ''Film/TheGoonies'' grew up to be the characters from ''Film/NationalTreasure''.
*** Stef from ''Film/PrettyInPink'' became Walter from ''Film/TheWoodsman''.
*** ''Film/{{Cloverfield}}'' was a revenge attack by ''Film/ETTheExtraTerrestrial''.
** ''[[http://www.cracked.com/blog/the-first-half-fight-club-was-in-movie-you-never-saw/ The First Half Of Fight Club Was In A Movie You Never Saw]]'' says that the kid in ''Film/CloakAndDagger'' is the main character from ''Film/FightClub'' as a child.
* The [[http://www.jabootu.com/sphere.htm Jabootu review]] of ''Film/{{Sphere}}'' draws the broad strokes of the film's ClicheStorm:
--> I was in fact entertained by the first part of ''Sphere'' the first time I saw it (when it was called either ''Film/TheAbyss'' or ''Film/{{Alien}}''), and I was ''quite highly'' entertained by the second half the first time I saw that (when it was called ''Film/ForbiddenPlanet'' and starred Walter Pigeon). I have to take it as a given that I would have enjoyed the last five minutes of ''Sphere'' along with everyone else who saw it the first time, when it was called ''PrinceOfTides'', but I missed that one.
* WebVideo/TheNostalgiaCritic stated in his review of ''Film/BarbWire'' that he liked it better when it was called ''Film/{{Casablanca}}''.
** When [[WebVideo/BennettTheSage Sage]] tells him that there are plans for a life-action adaptation of ''StarChaserTheLegendOfOrin'', the Critic screams they already made it, it was called ''Franchise/StarWars''.
** As an intro to his ''Film/ManOfSteel'' review, Superman (as played by Rob Scallon) sings about the events of that movie, while Batman (Doug himself) keeps pointing out that all of it applies to Film/TheDarkKnightSaga too.
** Inverted in his review of ''Film/OsmosisJones'', which he felt was done much better years later by Creator/{{Pixar}} as ''WesternAnimation/InsideOut''.
* [[WebVideo/BadMovieBeatdown Film Brain]]'s [[https://twitter.com/FB_BMB/status/311626171295084544 assessment of]] ''Film/VampiresSuck'': " I won't be doing a proper review of Vampires Suck - I did that already when it was called ''Film/EpicMovie'' [[SelfPlagiarism and nothing has changed]]".
* ''WebVideo/MidnightScreenings'' will occasionally do this for some movies, usually playing it straight for bad ones.
** Brad commented that ''Film/TheLoneRanger'' was just ''Film/WhoFramedRogerRabbit'' with the plot stretched out to two-and-a-half hours.
** For ''{{Disney/Frozen}}'', they called the story "the best of the ''[[Film/XMenFilmSeries X-Men]]'' origins films".
* The Website/PlatypusComix article "[[http://www.platypuscomix.net/kidzone/braver.html Braver]]" makes the ''WesternAnimation/AdventuresOfTheGummiBears'' episode "Girl's Knight Out" seem like a proto-''WesternAnimation/{{Brave}}'', albeit with a more courageous and rational TomboyPrincess in the form of Princess Calla.
* LetsPlay/TacoMan calls ''VideoGame/FiveNightsAtFreddys1'' a more realistic, but also more boring[[note]]Until the jump scares, of course[[/note]], version of ''VideoGame/NightTrap''.
-->At least in ''Night Trap'', they had [[{{Fanservice}} scantily-clad teenage girls]] and [[SugarWiki/AwesomeMusic that awesome song]].
* In WebVideo/RedLetterMedia's review of ''Film/StarTrek'', Mr. Plinkett described it as TheThemeParkVersion of the franchise, but also considered it a better ''Franchise/StarWars'' movie than the prequel trilogy, and joked that Creator/JJAbrams should have directed those films instead of Creator/GeorgeLucas. [[HilariousInHindsight Hilariously]], a few years later Abrams was picked to direct ''Film/TheForceAwakens'', the first of the ''Star Wars'' sequel trilogy.
* Creator/JamesRolfe argued that the original ''[[Film/PlanetOfTheApes1968 Planet Of The Apes]]'' could have been the perfect ''Series/TwilightZone'' movie, due to its TwistEnding and being written by Creator/RodSerling.
** He loved ''Film/VictorFrankenstein'' because he felt like he was watching one of the old ''Film/HammerHorror'' movies.
** When reviewing the 2014 ''[[Film/Godzilla2014 Godzilla]]'' movie, he said that he'd enjoy the [[Film/Godzilla1998 1998 film]] if it wasn't a Godzilla movie and prefers to think of it as a sequel to ''Film/IndependenceDay''.
* In his ''WebSite/YouTube'' video where ''[=TheRealJims=]'' puts forth his theory that [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIQzAJLKmUA Grampa Simpson actually shot Mr. Burns]] he argues that the episode, ''[[Recap/TheSimpsonsS7E22 Raging Abe Simpson and His Grumbling Grandson in "The Curse of the Flying Hellfish"]]'' could be considered ''[[Recap/TheSimpsonsWhoShotMrBurns Who Shot Mr Burns]] Part 3''.
* When ''Minty Comedic Arts'' made his ''[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smt96KIpDlQ 10 Things You May Not Know About]] Film/BillAndTed'' video, he complained that the plot of ''Film/{{Pleasantville}}'' had been done in an episode of ''WesternAnimation/BillAndTedsExcellentAdventures'' eight years before.

[[folder: Webcomics ]]

* [[AuthorAvatar Pantsman]] of ''Webcomic/VGCats'' does this twice in [[http://www.vgcats.com/comics/?strip_id=190 his rant]] about ''Manga/InuYasha'', first saying he liked it better when it was called ''Manga/FushigiYuugi'' and later calling it "''Dragon Ball Z'' for girls".


[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* An early episode of TheSimpsons features Bart and Homer watching an episode of Disney's Dinosaurs, with Bart commenting: "It's like they took our lives and put them right up there on the screen!"