This character was one of the original protagonists. They hung out, had adventures, and had the GrandFinale with the rest of the cast once the show was cancelled. Now the show has had a {{Revival}}, and the character's back, with a twist -- they're a generation older than the new cast, and they've come back specifically to help the people who are in the same situation they once faced. This role can also be filled, in a [[LongRunners Long Runner]], by a character who leaves and comes back after a significant span of time.

See also PrecursorHeroes.

Related to TheObiWan, though they're less likely to die. (Of course, there's always the possibility of a [[StuffedIntoTheFridge nasty refrigerator accident]]...)
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!!Examples:

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[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* In ''Anime/{{Gatekeepers 21}}'', several of the heroes from the original ''{{Gatekeepers}}'', now grown up, are around as commanders, mentors and even parents to the new cast, and [[spoiler:one of them has become the new series' Big Bad]].
* Miwa "Micchi" Uzuki, TheChick in the original ''KotetsuJeeg'', becomes TheCaptain in the {{revival}}, ''Koutetsushin Jeeg''.
* The original cast in the ''RecordOfLodossWar'' TV series after the time skip.
* A variation occurs in ''ZetaGundam'' where the TheRival of [[MobileSuitGundam the previous series]], Char Aznable plays the mentor role to Kamille Bidan.
** This is subverted in ''GundamSEEDDestiny'', wherein the previous cast end up in direct conflict with the new and still idealistic protagonists. They are older, and they are wiser, but it certainly doesn't do them much good when it comes to trying to convince the new cast of that.
*** Doesn't really help that most of the returning cast are a little [[ShellShockedVeteran burnt out.]]
** In addition to Char, Amuro Ray, the protagonist of the first series, gets this as well in Zeta Gundam, but is a bit more angsty about it. Also in ''CharsCounterattack'', he seems to have once again matured to a steel-willed veteran.
* Another example of it happening backwards is in ''MahouSenseiNegima'', where some members of Ala Rubra, who saved the world 20 years ago, show up to help Negi on his way. Especially Jack Rakan. He's certainly Older. Wiser? [[BoisterousBruiser Not so much]]. [[spoiler: Well, [[ObfuscatingStupidity he actually is]], but Negi finds that out [[NoHoldsBarredBeatdown the hard way]]]]
* The ''Anime/DigimonAdventure'' cast to the ''Anime/DigimonAdventure02'' cast. Four years separate the two.
* And Taiki and Shoutmon from ''Anime/DigimonXrosWars'' return to ''Anime/DigimonXrosWarsTheYoungHuntersLeapingThroughTime'' as the smart mentors. Yuu himself returns from the previous series now matured as one of the main cast.
* In ''MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha'', almost the entire cast of the first two seasons returns as OlderAndWiser mentor figures to the newcomers in ''[=StrikerS=]''. Nanoha specifically designs her training programs to prevent them from [[TrainingFromHell making the same mistakes]] that she did when she was younger.
* Any characters that are around for longer then one arc in ''Manga/JoJosBizarreAdventure''. Notable ones include [[SuperpowerfulGenetics Joseph Jostar]], [[BadassLongcoat Jotaro Kujo]], [[NiceHat Speedwagon]], [[DangerouslyGenreSavvy Dio Brando]], and even [[spoiler:[[ButtMonkey Polnareff]]]].
* Rad, Carlos, and Alexis from ''TransformersArmada'' return aged ten years older to play supporting roles in ''TransformersEnergon''.
** Also, Hot Shot has gone from the KidAppealCharacter to one of the new Bumblebee's trainers (and is actually idolized by him for the first few episodes.)
* Every new generation of Dex Holders in ''PokemonSpecial'' will eventually be backed up by the older ones.
* Smith in ''GingaDensetsuWeed''.
* [[MeaningfulName Yukihime]]/ [[spoiler:[[MahouSenseiNegima Evangeline A.K. McDowell]]]] from UQHolder. Interesting, because [[spoiler:in previous series she's practically the poster girl for ImmortalImmaturity.]]
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[[folder:Comic Books]]
* TheDCU often has [[TheGoldenAgeOfComicBooks Golden Age]] superheroes filling this role, especially Jay Garrick (the [[TheGoldenAgeOfComicBooks Golden Age]] ComicBook/TheFlash) and Max Mercury to Wally West (the PostCrisis ComicBook/TheFlash) and Impulse.
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[[folder:Film]]
* Don Diego Vega (Anthony Hopkins), the original Zorro, returns to train Alejandro Murrieta (Antonio Banderas) in ''{{The Mask of Zorro}}''.
* [[TheDitz Frenchie]] from ''Film/{{Grease}}'' returns to high school (yes, as a student) to be mentor to the next decade's NewTransferStudent Michael Carrington in ''Film/{{Grease 2}}''.
* Though only a few years older, Nancy from the original ''Film/ANightmareOnElmStreet1984'' embodies this trope when she trains a new batch of imperiled kids to fight back against Freddy in ''[[Film/ANightmareOnElmStreet3DreamWarriors Dream Warriors]]''.
* Obi Wan Kenobi over the course of the ''Franchise/StarWars'' films, who starts off as an apprentice to Qui Gon Jin, but becomes more of a wise and experienced Jedi master, culminating in him teaching Luke, his [[APupilOfMineUntilHeTurnedToEvil former]] [[WeUsedToBeFriends padawan's]] son, about the Force in the beginning of [[ANewHope episode IV]]. Luke goes through a similar development going from a whiny teenager in episode IV, to a wise, up-and-coming Jedi master himself in [[ReturnOfTheJedi episode VI]].
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[[folder:Literature]]
* Henry in ''Literature/TheTimeTravelersWife'' managed to be an OlderAndWiser mentor to ''himself''.
* Used in each subsequent ''Literature/TortallUniverse'' series by Creator/TamoraPierce.
** Alanna (''Literature/SongOfTheLioness'') appears as a parent and veteran warrior in ''Literature/TheImmortals'', ''Literature/ProtectorOfTheSmall'' and ''Literature/DaughterOfTheLioness''. By the time of the last, she's middle-aged, as is her husband George.
** Prince Jon of ''Literature/SongOfTheLioness'' is young, naive, and haughty. ''King'' Jon in ''Literature/ProtectorOfTheSmall'' is a firm and progressive ruler who makes pragmatic compromises and instills a sense of [[RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething royal responsibility]] in his descendants.
* Done interestingly in RobinHobb's works with Fitz, protagonist of the ''[[Literature/RealmOfTheElderlings Farseer]]'' trilogy. He's still the narrator and protagonist when he returns fifteen years later for the ''Tawny Man'' trilogy, but the heart of the story is his attempts to guide and mentor the adolescent offspring of his old friends. So, for once, the OlderAndWiser character remains the ''main'' character!
* The ''Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse'' has Ferus Olin, who was a contemporary of Anakin in the ''Literature/JediQuest'' series as a teenager, was a young adult and the main character of the ''Last of the Jedi'' series, and returned in the ''Rebel Force'' books to serve as on-again-off-again mentor to Luke and Leia. He does indeed have a HeroicSacrifice and a [[YouAreNotAlone genuinely moving death scene]].
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[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* Sarah Jane Smith in ''Series/TheSarahJaneAdventures''. Explicitly shown in "Turn Left": [[spoiler:In the Doctor-less alternate universe, Sarah Jane takes the Doctor's role in averting a disaster he stopped (or ''would'' have stopped) in the episode "Smith and Jones", though she dies in the process]].
* Tommy in ''Series/PowerRangersDinoThunder'', who returns to superheroing as the team mentor figure after taking seven years off for college, graduate school, a doctorate program, and wildly successful research on superpowered dinosaur cyborgs. It is unknown, but doubtful, if the character slept between his departure in 1997 and return in 2004.
* Barney Collier from ''MissionImpossible'' appeared in some episodes of the revival series, while his son was one of the main characters (and their actors were [[RealLifeRelative father and son]], too).
* Steed in ''Series/TheNewAvengers''
* Although ''WelcomeBackKotter'' didn't have any prior show, the character Gabe Kotter was a former student who comes back to his high school alma mater to teach an often unruly group of remedial wiseguys known as the "Sweathogs", of which he was a founding member.
* Colonel Samantha Carter is promoted from a member of the FiveManBand in ''Series/StargateSG1'' to the leader of the Atlantis Expedition in ''Series/StargateAtlantis''. The timespan is a bit shorter, but the concept is the same.
** [[FourStarBadass Lieutenant General]] [[Franchise/StargateVerse Jack O'Neill]] takes on this role in ''Series/StargateUniverse''.
* When Faith first appears in ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'' she's a cynic, a BloodKnight and especially because she is a Slayer she can have and do whatever she wants. Now she tries to teach other Slayers that WithGreatPowerComesGreatResponsibility and WithGreatPowerComesGreatInsanity, is on the lookout for those who might go KnightTemplar, and is insightful enough to know that Angel created monsters, and tears himself up over having to live with them.
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[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* The ''TabletopGame/YuGiOh'' card game has ''lots'' of monsters that are older versions of other monsters, and it's kind of hard to list them all. Some notable examples:
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Magician Dark Magician]] -> [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Sage Dark Sage]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Injection_Fairy_Lily Injection Fairy Lily]] -> [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Counselor_Lily Counselor Lily]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Legendary_Six_Samurai_-_Shi_En Legendary Six Samurai - Shi En]] -> [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Great_Shogun_Shien Great Shogun Shien]]
** There are lots of others, of course, but it's impossible to list them all.
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[[folder:Theatre]]
* Although still technically the main character, Oedipus of ''Theatre/OedipusAtColonus'' has completely transformed from his portrayal in ''Theatre/OedipusTheKing'' and provides a contrast with the rest of the cast which is younger.
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[[folder:Video Games]]
* Ryu and Ken in ''StreetFighter III'', and Terry Bogard in ''[[FatalFury Garou: Mark of the Wolves]]''
* Solid Snake in ''MetalGearSolid2'', since he'd become so [[MemeticBadass Badass]] that it could no longer be constrained by the limits of gameplay.
* The Moon Angels in ''[[VideoGame/GalaxyAngel Galaxy Angel II]]''.
* Dekar of ''VideoGame/LufiaIIRiseOfTheSinistrals'' joins the party in ''{{Lufia}}: Ruins of Lore'', but calling him ''wiser'' may be a bit of a stretch...
* Bleu (Deis) from the ''BreathOfFire'' series, especially in ''VideoGame/BreathOfFireII'' ([[GuideDangIt provided that you can find her...]]) where she proves to be one of the best spellcasters in the game.
* Averted in ''[[VideoGame/FireEmblemTellius Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn]]'' in which the cast of Path of Radiance all make appearances as major characters and despite some maturity still have their own problems and issues to deal with.
** Finn and Oifey, from ''[[VideoGame/FireEmblemJugdral Genealogy of the Holy War]]'', are straighter examples ; you had them in the first generation as young apprentices, in the second generation they are back as mentors to Leif and Nanna, and Seliph and the other children at Tirnanogue respectively. Shanan also serves as a mentor to Seliph as well his much younger cousins, Larcei and Ulster. Lewyn, who comes back as Seliph's strategist, also counts, though this may be because of his [[spoiler: [[BackFromTheDead resurrection]] and LaserGuidedAmnesia]]
* Dante in ''VideoGame/DevilMayCry 4'', it's a bit inconsistent thanks to how the games' timelines jump around but he goes from a smart-ass to a smart-ass with a lot of experience.
* Phoenix Wright in ''VisualNovel/ApolloJusticeAceAttorney''. Some argue that this transition [[NotAsYouKnowThem wasn't entirely natural]], however...
* The main character of ''DigDug'', to the main character of ''Mr. Driller''.
* Rydia from ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV''. She joins the party as a child, and when the ship your party is on gets destroyed, she is taken to the Land of Monsters, where time flows faster than in the regular world. When she rejoins the party later in the game, she is a fully-grown adult, complete with additional powers.
* Auron in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'' would fit this trope perfectly, except we see it backwards. Near the beginning, he emerges from obscurity to join the younger crew and teach them what's what, but only as the game progresses do we gradually learn what happened the first time around.
* ''[[VideoGame/DarkForcesSaga Dark Forces/Jedi Knight]]'' series hero Kyle Katarn becomes the mentor to new player character Jaden Korr in ''VideoGame/JediAcademy'' [[spoiler:He's also the FinalBoss if you turn to TheDarkSide, and actually puts up one hell of a fight]].
* In ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess'', the Hero's Shade teaches Link several advanced sword techniques, and there are multiple nods at him being a previous Link (eventually [[WordOfGod confirmed]] to be the one from ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOcarinaOfTime'').
** Similarly, Ganondorf himself returns older and wiser in ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker'', now sporting a surprisingly effective BeardOfEvil, having become much more calm and calculating than he was in his youth, preferring to control events from the shadows as opposed to in everyone's face with his magic and hordes of evil. Fittingly, however, he reverts to his fury of the old days during the final battle.
* Sonny Bonds, the hero of the original ''PoliceQuest'' {{Sierra}} point-and-click adventure games, is your SWAT unit's commanding officer in the tactical FirstPersonShooter ''{{SWAT 4}}''.
** For the record, that means the last time we saw him, he was a Detective Sergeant in Homicide. A minimum of ten years later (due to physical SWAT requirements), he has been promoted to the rank of Captain. At least. One hell of a meteoric rise.
* Liese in ''VideoGame/{{Atelier Annie|Alchemists of Sera Island}}''. [[NoExportForYou Not that you'd be expected to know]]. She's also [[spoiler: a kind of TricksterMentor, since she's testing and spying on Annie for her grandfather]].
* Leo Stenbuck from ''VideoGame/ZoneOfTheEnders'', returning in ''The Second Runner'' less mopey and with [[TookALevelInBadass added levels in Badass]].
* Flik and Viktor in ''{{Suikoden II}}''.
* The ''Franchise/DonkeyKong'' series has Cranky Kong, who was the Donkey Kong from the [[VideoGame/DonkeyKong original arcade games]]. Unfortunately, while he's older and wiser, he's ''so much so'' that he's more GrumpyOldMan than anything else.
* Peppy Hare, from ''VideoGame/StarFox'', is seen as this, having been part of the original Star Fox Team. He even gives up piloting his arwing after ''Star Fox Adventures''.
* [[Main/SoulSeries Soul Calibur]] has at least two examples:
** Siegfried changes from an arrogant bandit from a knightly background who unknowingly murders his own father and winds up letting Soul Edge turn him into the next [[BigBad Nightmare,]] to a regretful and determined paladin-like figure determined to redeem himself even in the face of horrific crimes and almost certain death.
** Seong Mi-na is the same age as Siegfried, and starts out as a naive and {{hot blooded}} girl. In later installments, Yun-Seong looks up to her as a {{cool big sis}}, and her father remarks that she has grown.
* [[VideoGame/GoldenSun Isaac and Garet]] show up for the tutorial levels of ''VideoGame/GoldenSunDarkDawn''. Garet plays the trope straight, having matured from a HotBlooded source of PluckyComicRelief to a more sedate parent struggling to keep a leash on his even-''more''-temperamental teenage son, but Isaac subverts it almost to the point of a total inversion-- he's gone from a [[HeroicMime quiet]] momma's boy with a bad case of ChronicHeroSyndrome to a rather reckless fellow more interested in putting Matthew through obstacle courses than getting Tyrell out of life-threatening danger.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Webcomics]]
* Clark from ''[[http://www.shapequest.net Shape Quest]]'', who complains that they feel he's way too old for adventuring, despite being 35.
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[[folder:WebOriginal]]
* Yamauchi-sensei from [[GreekNinja Greek Ninja]].
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[[folder:Western Animation]]
* A now old and retired Bruce Wayne in the futuristic ''WesternAnimation/BatmanBeyond''.
** Also, a {{Crossover}} episode of ''WesternAnimation/StaticShock'' shows Static in that time period, not only Older and Wiser, but far stronger.
* Egon in ''WesternAnimation/ExtremeGhostbusters'' (while his three colleagues made a cameo NotAsYouKnowThem).
* A rare villainous example is Ravage from ''WesternAnimation/BeastWars''. One of the last surviving original Decepticons from the era of the Cybertronian Wars (a.k.a. [[WesternAnimation/TheTransformers the original cartoon]]), he's moved up in the world since we saw him last, and he learned a thing or two from his millenia of war.
** Also, the TimeSkip between the original 'toon and movie has Spike going from TagalongKid to adult who has a son who's the new TagalongKid.
* In the ''{{Futurama}}'' film ''Bender's Big Score'', [[spoiler:Lars Fillmore is an older and more mature version of Fry who managed to get sent to the past and had his features accidentally changed to become near-unrecognizable.]]
* WordOfGod says one reason ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice'' had a TimeSkip: season one shows the Team being trained by their own mentors, while season two shows them older and training even younger heroes.
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[[folder:Real Life]]
* This frequently happens with military officers in between major wars. A few notable examples from American history include UsefulNotes/AndrewJackson, who served as a messenger during the UsefulNotes/TheAmericanRevolution while a teenager, then went on to become a General in the Main/WarOf1812. Quite a few junior officers got their first experience in the Main/MexicanAmericanWar before going on to become prominent figures during the UsefulNotes/TheAmericanCivilWar, including Robert E. Lee and UsefulNotes/UlyssesSGrant. The same goes for the UsefulNotes/SpanishAmericanWar giving young officers experience for UsefulNotes/WorldWarI, including the commander of the American forces in WW1 General John "Black Jack" Pershing. World War I also served in this capacity for UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, giving officers like UsefulNotes/DwightDEisenhower (though he trained troops rather than seeing action himself in WW1,) and [[FourStarBadass George S. Patton]].
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