There are two characters. Maybe one is [[HeWhoMustNotBeSeen never seen]], or is only mentioned in passing, or whose [[TheFaceless face is never seen]], or it's a book and the author ain't much for descriptions. These two never meet, are never in the same scene, and/or never interact with the same characters. Eventually it's revealed that they're actually the same person. Note that, [[NonIndicativeName contrary to what the trope name suggests]], they do not actually need two aliases (i.e. pseudonyms) for this trope to apply - but either the characters in-universe or the reader/viewer (or both) need to believe them to be '''separate''' people, until TheReveal.

This trope also applies to MultiplePersonalities, so long as characters/audience are unaware that they physically share the same body. It is possible to use this as CharacterDevelopment if the character assume(s/d) a new alias unbeknownest to other characters, especially if the previous alias and persona are considered dead or status unknown.

This is often a source of WildMassGuessing, with fans trying to argue that two different characters are really the same person, usually with no given reason why this person would have another identity.

Usually involves SecretIdentity, though sometimes [[TomatoSurprise it's only a surprise to the audience]] that the characters are the same. Compare InventedIndividual, where someone makes up a new identity without pretending to be them (though less personal examples can blur the line between the two). Contrast CollectiveIdentity, which is Two Characters, One Alias.



[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* ''Anime/DragonBallSuper'': Future Zamasu's ally and Goku's EvilCounterpart, Goku Black, [[spoiler: turns out to be an alternate version of Zamasu [[FreakyFridayFlip who switched bodies with Goku]].]]
* L in ''Manga/DeathNote'' isn't just ''one of'' the top 3 detectives in the world, he's ''all'' of them under separate aliases.
** Also, early in the series the audience never sees Light's father around the house, being told that he's working. Turns out it's the police chief that's already been around a few chapters.
** Later example: After [[spoiler:L's death at his hands,]] Light assumes control of the Kira Taskforce and presents himself to police around the world under the name "L" while still maintaining his identity as [[{{SerialKillerKiller}} Kira]].
** In ''LightNovel/AnotherNote'', Mello estimates the number of aliases L goes by to be somewhere in the three-digit range.
* ''Anime/{{Bakugan}}'':
** Masquerade/[[spoiler:Alice]]. [[spoiler:This is a shock even to her.]]
** In "Mectanium Surge", Wiseman, a brawler that the Noneds had aligned with was at first thought to be Gunz, a brawler Dan had fought with prior to the attack of the evil nomad mectagon. [[spoiler:It's eventually revealed that he is actually Cortagon, the leader of the mectagon, who had used Gunz's form as a disguise]].
* ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'' (manga and Brotherhood anime):
** Pride, the most powerful of the Homunculi, turns out to have a public identity the Elric brothers are familiar with: [[spoiler:Selim Bradley, the "son" of Fuhrer King Bradley/Wrath]].
** {{Subverted}} by Van Hohenheim and [[spoiler: Father. Considering that they look exactly alike and that Hohenheim is secretive, morally ambiguous, and much longer-lived than any normal human, it's reasonable to assume that they're the same person. Turns out that Father is a {{doppelganger}} who took on Hohenheim's appearance due to some shared history and AppliedPhlebotinum. Not only that, the two fill the roles of BigGood and BigBad, respectively]].
* In ''LightNovel/{{Baccano}}'''s ''Drugs and the Dominoes'', Claire Stanfield not only has the reputation as the world's most violent and dangerous assassin, but is also the greatest challenger to that claim, [[spoiler:Felix Walken]]. Gustavo then makes the mistake of hiring the latter to kill the former (along with his stepbrothers, the Gandors) and violent {{hilarity ensues}}.
** Also, despite the fact that immortals have magically-enforced difficulty with aliases, [[spoiler:Lebreau Fermet Viralesque is usually only known by one part of his real name per identity.]]
* [[spoiler: Goji and Abullah]] in both the original ''Manga/AstroBoy'' and Creator/NaokiUrasawa's retelling ''Manga/{{Pluto}}''. (In the former, just a disguise; in the latter, an alternate personality.)
* ''Manga/FairyTail'' is rather fond of this, with some characters pulling off two aliases via magical projections of themselves:
** Councilman Siegrain, initially believed to be the GoodTwin of the terrorist Jellal, is later revealed to be Jellal's double created to manipulate the council in a ploy to gather enough magic energy to revive Zeref.
** Alexei, a mysterious armored man first seen leading Raven Tail's elite team in the Grand Magic Games, is actually [[spoiler:Raven Tail's master Ivan, who places a holographic projection of himself in the rafters while he privately interrogates his son Laxus in person since guild masters are forbidden from taking part in the tournament]].
** Mato, the pumpkin mask-wearing mascot of the Grand Magic Games, is later revealed to be [[spoiler:the King of Fiore himself, Toma E. Fiore]]. The first indicator of this is when [[spoiler:Mato is absent on the second day of the Games, which is the only day the king happens to show up]].
** Zeref's ultimate Etherious demon is called "E.N.D." While this name is an alias by itself, it is short for [[spoiler:Etherious Natsu Dragneel]], revealing the true identity behind E.N.D.
** [[TheEmperor Emperor Spriggan]], the initially unseen ruler of the Alvarez Empire, is believed by everyone who knows his name to be the next in a long line of {{Arc Villain}} before the final battle with [[BigBad Zeref]] and [[GreaterScopeVillain Acnologia]]. A short while later, he makes his appearance and it turns out [[spoiler:it actually ''is'' Zeref himself, signaling the climax of the series]].
* In ''Anime/{{K}}'', [[spoiler:Shiro is actually Adolf K. Weismann, the Silver King, in the body of an OrdinaryHighSchoolStudent]].
* In ''Manga/TokyoGhoul'', this serves as TheReveal of the series finale. [[spoiler: Eto, Sen Takatsuki, and the One-Eyed Owl are all the same person]].
* In ''Anime/KillLaKill'', [[spoiler:Ryuko's father Isshin Matoi]] is revealed to be an alias for [[spoiler:Satsuki's father Soichiro Kiryuin]], which means that [[spoiler:Ryuko and Satsuki are actually sisters.]]
* As revealed in the final season of ''Anime/YuGiOh'', Yami Bakura, the evil spirit of the Millennium Ring that Yugi and his friends had run across several times [[spoiler:is actually Zorc the Dark One, the demonic beast that attacked ancient Egypt]].

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* The entire team of ''ComicBook/{{Thunderbolts}}'' in their first run.
* Shadowhawk, where the actual identity of the hero was kept secret from the reader for a full year of the comic's run
* In ''Comicbook/{{Watchmen}}'', [[spoiler: Rorschach is revealed to be the guy with the 'The End is Nigh' sign.]]
* ''ComicBook/{{Legacy}}'' brings us Morrigan Corde and [[spoiler: Nyna Callixte]]. It's unclear which one came first, or if they're aliases of a third identity.
* In an early issue of ''JusticeLeagueOfAmerica'' Year One, each of the five superheroes makes an acquaintance in their civilian identities - Perez the coast guard stands up for Aquaman in a bar, Lora Denton investigates Hal Jordan's test flight for the FAA, Officer Sherman looks in on Diana Lance's flower shop, Detective Jackson starts working with forensics officer Barry Allen, and supercop John Jones is approached by reporter Cal Redmond and creepy fellow detective Vince Logan. It turns out all of these [[spoiler:except the last two are J'onn J'onzz using his shapeshifting to spy on the others. It doesn't go down well.]]
* This is a key point in ''ComicBook/AmericanBornChinese''. [[spoiler:Jin Wang and Danny are the same person, even though their stories are told in parallel. The aliases are used to emphasize the (cultural) differences in the character as he struggles to define his identity.]]
* This was the original plan for the ''ComicBook/XMen'' character Xorn by creator Creator/GrantMorrison; after a long time serving on the team, Xorn unmasked and turned out to be Magneto. Ultimately subverted by ExecutiveMeddling when Xorn was retconned as an original character who believed himself to be Magneto.
* ''ComicBook/MoonKnight'': Lovable cabbie Jake Lockley and debonair millionaire Steven Grant are in actuality both aliases for the believed-dead mercenary Marc Spector. Oh, and he's also the vigilante Moon Knight.
* ''Main/TheShadow'' is actually Lamont Cranston, RichIdiotWithNoDayJob. Except he's not. The real Lamont is secretly on an extended vacation so that Kent Allard, the ''actual'' Shadow, can enjoy posing as him while doing vigilante work.

* Keyser Soze/[[spoiler:Verbal Kint]] in ''Film/TheUsualSuspects''.
* ''Franchise/StarWars'':
** Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker, a Jedi Knight who fell to great evil by becoming a Sith Lord.
** Chancellor Palpatine/Darth Sidious, if you watch the movies in chronological rather than production order.
* ''Film/LeagueOfExtraordinaryGentlemen''. The British Government official known as "M" who brought the League together turns out to also be [[spoiler:The Phantom, their opponent]]. And ''then'' it's revealed that his ''real'' identity is [[spoiler: [[SherlockHolmes Professor James Moriarty]]]].
* In ''Film/ScottPilgrimVsTheWorld'', [[spoiler:there are several references to Scott's band wanting to attract the attention of G-man, an influential producer. Ramona also makes some off-hand references to her previous boyfriend Gideon. These two both refer to Gideon Graves, who is the BigBad]].
* In ''Film/TRONLegacy'': Castor, Zuse's gatekeeper, actually is Zuse.
* In ''Film/BatmanBegins'', Bruce meets [[spoiler:Ducard who acts as a spokesperson for the legendary Ra's al Ghul. It turns out that the Ra's al Ghul that Bruce had met was more likely to be a decoy while Ducard is the actual Ra's al Ghul.]]
* [[spoiler:Kananga/Mr. Big]] in ''Film/LiveAndLetDie''.
* In ''Disney/WreckItRalph'', [[spoiler:King Candy, the ruler of the ''Sugar Rush'' arcade racing game, is revealed in the climax to be Turbo, the hero of an older generation racing game who was notorious among his fellow video game characters for hacking a newer game out of jealousy, which ended up breaking both in the process. It is revealed that he survived the event and did the same thing to ''Sugar Rush'', only with a bit more subtlety]].
* In ''Film/TheSecretOfMySuccess'', business-savvy executive Carlton Whitfield is actually lowly mailroom worker Brantley Foster. This double-life isn't concealed from the viewing audience, but only one person in the movie (Brantley's co-worker) learns of it before the climax, and even then, only by accident.
* ''Anime/TheMysteryOfMamo'' gives Mamo the alias of Howard Lockewood. He needs the alias because nobody gave out birth certificates [[spoiler: 10,000 years ago.]]

* ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets'': Harry comes across a diary belonging to a Tom Riddle, a prefect in Hogwarts' past. It is later revealed that Tom Riddle is the real name for Voldemort.
* ''Literature/TheStrangeCaseOfDrJekyllAndMrHyde''. [[AllThereIsToKnowAboutTheCryingGame Originally]], it was a big twist to discover at the end that Jekyll and Hyde were the same person.
* Of the ''Literature/{{Foundation}}'' series:
** Chetter Hummin/Eto Demerzel/[[spoiler:R. Daneel Olivaw]]
** Preem Palver, farmer/[[spoiler:First Speaker of the Foundation. If you know Latin you could figure it out.]]
** For that matter, in the second half of ''Literature/FoundationAndEmpire'' [[spoiler:Magnifico Giganticus, who claims to be The Mule's escaped jester]] is actually The Mule. The fact that nearly every description the reader gets of The Mule comes from Magnifico (it's explicitly pointed out that Magnifico is so clearly terrified of The Mule that his descriptions are probably grossly exaggerated) helps obscure this.
** The first Foundation one is also a pun [[spoiler: Cheeter Hummin- he's not really human- he's an android.]]
* Scylla/[[spoiler: Henry Levy]] in ''Literature/MarathonMan''. The novel makes a big secret out of it.
* In Agatha Christie's
** ''Literature/MurderOnTheOrientExpress'', [[spoiler:Mrs. Hubbard]] is actually [[spoiler: Linda Arden, Daisy Armstrong's grandmother]].
** ''Literature/OneTwoBuckleMyShoe'', [[spoiler: Mabelle Sainsbury Seale is actually Mrs. Albert Chapman, who herself is ''really'' Alistair Blunt's first wife, Gerda, who's been posing as his cousin!]] This is convoluted even by Christie standards.
* ''Literature/TheWestingGame'': the entire point of the game is that [[spoiler:one man has set up three identities named for points of the compass, and the winner is the first person to realize this and look for a fourth.]]
* ''Literature/TheScarletPimpernel''
* ''Literature/FightClub'': Tyler and [[spoiler:the narrator]]. In fact, at one point, the narrator even wonders if Tyler and [[spoiler:''Marla'']] are the same person, invoking this trope.
* In ''Literature/{{Dragaera}}'' [[spoiler: Kiera the Thief is also Sethra Lavode]]. In this case, the two characters share some common friends, but TheReveal is totally a shock because they seemingly have little in common, although once the reveal is made, clues in earlier books become noticeable.
* In ''Gates of Ivory, Gates of Horn'', by Tom [=McGrath=], [[spoiler: Cary and his nemesis/brother are different sides of the same person.]]
* [[spoiler:Mr. World and [[MeaningfulName Low-Key Lyesmith]]]] are both aliases of [[spoiler:the god Loki]] in ''Literature/AmericanGods'' by Creator/NeilGaiman.
* The twist endings in two novels of ''Literature/TheCulture'', ''Literature/ThePlayerOfGames'' as well as ''Literature/SurfaceDetail'' both make use of this trope.
* In ''Literature/AngelsAndDemons'' and ''Literature/TheDaVinciCode'', the mysterious unseen leader of the villains turns out to be a seemingly sympathetic character. It's also done slightly differently in ''Literature/DigitalFortress''. Creator/DanBrown seems to love this trope.
* In ''Literature/TheGirlWhoCircumnavigatedFairylandInAShipOfHerOwnMaking'', the lost Good Queen Mallow is now [[spoiler: the semi-villain Marquess]].
* In ''[[TabletopGame/{{Ravenloft}} Vampire of the Mists]]'', [[spoiler:Katya]] and [[spoiler:Trina]] are revealed at the end to be the same person.
* [[spoiler:Sylvia Daisy the cruel governess]] and [[spoiler:Mrs Pouncer the wicked witch]] in ''Literature/TheMidnightFolk'' by Creator/JohnMasefield.
* In ''Literature/SardHarker'' by Creator/JohnMasefield, Harker stumbles on a plot by a criminal named Hirsch to abduct and ritually murder a woman named Margarita Kingsborough. He spends most of the novel a few steps behind the villains, and doesn't meet either Hirsch or Miss Kingsborough properly until nearly the end--and both of them turn out to be examples of this trope.
** Part of Harker's backstory is that many years ago he met and fell in love with a woman called Juanita de la Torre, only to be parted from her in circumstances such that he was unable to find her again--until he meets Margarita Kingsborough near the end of the novel, and immediately recognizes her. This is foreshadowed heavily from the outset and the eventual reveal is not so much "Senorita de la Torre and Miss Kingsborough are the same person" as "This is how it's possible that Senorita de la Torre and Miss Kingsborough are the same person".
** [[spoiler:Father Garsinton]], an apparently friendly character Harker meets near the beginning of the book before stumbling on the kidnapping plot, turns out to have been Hirsch in disguise.
** Also, when recounting the backstory of Harker's friend Don Miguel, mention is made of a man named Rafael who was involved in the death of Don Miguel's fiancée and escaped retribution afterward; the first time that Rafael's surname or Hirsch's given name is mentioned is when it is revealed that Rafael Hirsch is both of them.
* ''The Last of the Venitars'' takes this to the extreme. [[spoiler: Tobias, James and the Beast are all revealed to be the same person, albeit in different time periods. Francis is also revealed to be "the old man".]]
* Aragorn as Strider/Thorongil/whatever name he uses for adventuring and Aragorn as Elessar the Isildur's Heir in ''Literature/LordOfTheRings''. There's no surprise for the reader, but in-universe not many people know they are the same person. Barliman Butterbur particularly is very surprised when he learns that the King who Returned and Strider the strange vagabond he knew are one and the same.
* [[spoiler: Gen is actually the Queen's Thief, Eugenides,]] revealed at the end of ''The Thief'', the first book in ''Literature/TheQueensThief'' series.
* In ''Literature/LesMiserables'', Jean Valjean is also known as Monsieur Madeleine, Ultime Fauchelevent, and Monsieur Leblanc which are both twists in-universe and out (although more so the former). Also, the Jondrettes later in the novel are revealed to be the Thenardiers.
* In ''Literature/{{Warbreaker}}'', it turns out that the infamous Kalad the Usurper who nearly started a world war, and the revered Peacegiver, who ended it were really the same person, who had become TheAtoner, even though history thinks this was two different people. That person has many names, and is [[OlderThanTheyLook currently known]] as [[spoiler: Vasher]], and their "real" name (or at least the name they were given when they Returned) was [[TitleDrop Warbreaker]] the Peaceful.
* For most of ''Discworld/ThiefOfTime'', even [[spoiler:Lobsang and Jeremy]] themselves don't realize they're the same person. This one is more confusing than most, because they're the same person but have separate bodies (it's complicated).
* ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire''
** In the first book, after being forced into retirement by Joffrey, [[BadassGrandpa Ser Barristan Selmy]] pledges to serve the rightful ruler and vanishes. A decent part of the next two books features various people vying for the throne wondering where the hell he went, until late in the third book he unmasks himself...[[spoiler:on the other side of the world, where he's serving Daenerys Targaryen and has been for some time, under the name Arstan Whitebeard.]]
** In the fourth book, Samwell Tarly briefly meets a girl called Cat. The reader knows all along that Cat is really Arya Stark, and that she is the sister of Samwell's friend Jon Snow, but he is oblivious to this.
** Theon Greyjoy is knocked out at the end of Book 2, and then is missing for the next two books. Then in Book 5, a dirty, weak, and slightly insane character called Reek is introduced. Gradually, hints are made, until it is finally made clear that Reek is what is left of Theon after a year of physical and mental torture.
* Cleverly used in the Franchise/StarTrekNovelVerse book ''Literature/TerokNor: Dawn of the Eagles'', where a single character is secretly both a member of the Orallian religious underground and a Central Command officer. Both roles use his ''real'' name, with the twist that the narration for one role is on a FirstNameBasis, and the other on LastNameBasis. Thus, TheReveal is as simple as him saying his full name, [[spoiler: Thrax Sa'kat]].
* In CS Friedman's ''Literature/ColdfireTrilogy'', [[spoiler: Gerald Terrant]] passes himself off as [[spoiler:a servant to the Hunter]], but is actually [[spoiler:the Hunter himself]].
* In ''{{The Pale Assassin}}'', [[spoiler: Le Scalpel]] is actually [[spoiler:Guy Dechamps]].
* Double Helix in ''Literature/WildCards'', who is a shapeshifter.
* In ''Literature/TheDaggerAndTheCoin'', it is revealed at the end of the [[FirstEpisodeSpoiler first novel]] and heavily hinted at throughout that the [[DefectorFromDecadence renegade Spider Priest]] of the prologue is one in the same with the affable actor Master Kit.
* There's a number of examples of this in ''Literature/TheFirstLaw'' and its semi-sequels:
** Early in the ''Literature/TheFirstLaw'' trilogy, dashing soldier turned disfigured TortureTechnician Inquisitor Glokta has his BigFun former friend and comrade Salems Rews shipped to a penal colony in the North for defrauding the Crown. In the story line set in the North, one character who appears is the hideously burned convict and ex-soldier Pike. There's no real hint that Rews and Pike are the same person, and it is therefore a shocking twist when Pike/Rews pulls NoDoubtTheYearsHaveChangedMe on Glokta at the very end of the trilogy.
** In ''Literature/BestServedCold'', the antiheroine Monza is nursed back to health after her attempted murder by a somewhat creepy man calling himself the Bone Thief. Also appearing in the novel is the seasoned ProfessionalKiller Shenkt. What makes the reveal that the two men are the same person a bit of twist is that the Bone Thief was established as an ally of Monza and Shenkt [[XanatosRoulette at least ostensibly]] accepted a commission to kill her.
** In ''Literature/RedCountry'', although the real names of the characters are never said, the reader is to understand that TheSoCalledCoward Lamb is TheDreaded Logen Ninefingers/The Bloody Nine and [[MissKitty The Mayor]] is former [[MerchantPrince Merchant Princess]] Carlot dan Eider.
** The magus Bayaz [[ManBehindTheMan has ruled the Union behind the scenes]] for centuries, something which he accomplished through multiple instances of this. Bayaz is [[BaldOfEvil bald]] as have been the lead advisers to various kings and Bayaz claims apparently truthfully that all of those bald men were actually just him. Among other things, he was Bialoveld, known for being TheGoodChancellor and producing Machiavellian political writings, as well as the arch-reactionary Zoller who founded the Inquisition and enforced the law through torture and repression. Additionally, Bayaz [[CorruptCorporateExecutive controls the powerful bank Valint and Balk]] and is both Valint and Balk.
* In ''Franchise/TheDarkTower'', [[spoiler:Marten and Walter are both aliases for King's meta-villain Randall Flagg]].
* A justifiably partial example occurs in Creator/VernorVinge's ''[[Literature/ZonesOfThought The Children of the Sky]]''. [[spoiler:What's left of Steel]] is disguised as [[spoiler:Screwfloss]] using fake dyed pelt-markings, but when one of his members is killed, he loses some cognitive capacity, which causes him to be lax in keeping the disguise maintained.
* From LightNovel/DanganRonpaZero, [[spoiler:Ryoko Otonashi is BigBad Junko Enoshima after getting amnesia]]
* In ''Literature/TheSagaOfDarrenShan'', you know from as soon as he introduces himself that Harkat Mulds is a creature resurrected from a dead soul. What you don't know until book 10 is that [[spoiler: the person he was when he was alive is Kurda Smahlt, a vampire who featured prominently in the series before that point, and whose life overlaps with Harkat's presence in the story. Time travel was involved.]]
* In ''Literature/TheDinosaurLords'', the MysteriousWatcher [[spoiler:Witness]] and MysteriousBenefactor [[spoiler:Aphrodite]] turn out to be one and the same mysterious [[spoiler:Genius Loci]].
* Taken UpToEleven in ''Literature/TheCosmere'', where there are entire pantheons where every deity is actually the Shard Bavadin.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/{{LOST}}'':
** [[spoiler:The Man in Black, Fake Locke, Fake Christian, and the Smoke Monster]] are all one and the same being.
** Locke's father also turns out to be [[spoiler:"Sawyer," the con artist behind Sawyer's tragic childhood]].
* ''Series/{{Life On Mars|2006}}'': The Morton Brothers/[[spoiler:Vic Tyler]].
* {{Series/TinMan}} had a mild example when the party went to find "The Seeker" in the realm of the unwanted, who could guide them to Ahamo, one of the Queen's helpers. Well, yes, they are the same fellow...and that same fellow's third alias was the Queen's consort (and DG & Azkedellia's father).
* ''Franchise/PowerRangers'':
** ''Series/PowerRangersInSpace'': Astronema/[[spoiler:Karone]]. The former even gained a physical form so that they could fight for the latter's redemption.
** ''Series/PowerRangersWildForce'': Master Org turned out to be [[spoiler:Dr. Adler... until the real Master Org takes over Adler's body upon Adler's death]].
** ''Series/PowerRangersDinoThunder'' has the JekyllAndHyde type in Mesogog/[[spoiler:Anton Mercer]], but also Elsa/Principal Randall, who is both a SadistTeacher and TheDragon.
** ''Series/PowerRangersMysticForce'': Koragg/[[spoiler:Leanbow]].
** ''Series/PowerRangersJungleFury'': After his [[AnimalBattleAura animal spirit]] is injured, R.J. [[spoiler:begins turning in a werewolf and attacking the Rangers]].
** ''Series/PowerRangersRPM'': It turns out that Tenaya 7 [[spoiler:is Dillon's sister and was previously held captive as Subject T-78]].
* ''Franchise/KamenRider'':
** ''Series/KamenRiderFourze'' does it ''epically'' as a major twist, with multiple layers that in one moment will change your understanding of multiple characters.
*** How it looks:
*** The BigBad, known only as "the man with red eyes" until we learn that he's Mituaki Gamou, kills Kengo's father in the backstory.
*** Virgo is TheDragon. Gamou's got three, but she's the most dangerous: The other two, respectively, have the job of recruiting new Zodiarts and being Gamou's bodyguard and only fight Fourze in the course of these duties. Virgo does one thing - she makes sure people who get in Gamou's way disappear forever. When she gets serious, Fourze is clearly outclassed in combat, and worse, she's usually able to reach her targets before Fourze can reach her.
*** Kuniteru Emoto, Kengo's dad's colleague, is an ally of the heroes. He's kind of nervous and clumsy, but smart. Having him around just might give them a leg up on finding out what's really going on.
*** Tachibana - no, not [[Series/KamenRider T]][[Series/KamenRiderV3 o]][[Series/KamenRiderX b]][[Series/KamenRiderAmazon e]][[Series/KamenRiderStronger i]] or [[Series/KamenRiderBlade Sakuya]] - is the mysterious masked boss of Kamen Rider Meteor. He lives on a space station.
*** How it is:
*** Virgo is actually [[spoiler: Tachibana ''and'' Emoto. Tachibana's mask deepens Emoto's voice, and Virgo is a reverse SamusIsAGirl; though not effeminate in any way, the male Prof. Emoto's monster form looks and sounds female. Male-seeming monsters have turned out to be female villains on many occasions - it works the other way around, too, for the first time ever. Emoto did work with Kengo's father... and eventually became jealous, betraying him, and... ''being responsible for the attack in the beginning that we always thought was Gamou'' because all we knew was that his eyes glowed red. As the ones who have been Zodiarts for the longest, Emoto and Gamou can ''both'' do GlowingEyesOfDoom.]] And ''that,'' my friends, is how a WhamEpisode is ''done.''
** Played strangely in ''Series/KamenRiderGhost'' - the ghostly Sage who assists the heroes is obviously played by the same actor as the villains' Minister Edith, but they're so different in personality and goals that it's unclear whether this is at play or there's some other reason for their resemblance (further confused by implications that one or both characters can create [[ArtificialHuman Artificial Ghosts]]). Then the heroes start meeting with Edith, and he doesn't seem to recognise them or know who the Sage is. [[spoiler:The truth is revealed anticlimactically when at one of their meetings, Edith ''forgets to change out of his Sage outfit''.]]
* A very minor example in universe occurs in ''Series/TheNewsroom'', [[spoiler: Both Will Macavoy and Charlie Skinner have sources that told them about war crime committed by the US government, while the story was pretty much a go at that point Will's source cinches the deal and galvanizes the crew. Since the story is told via flashback the audience is instantly aware that they share the same source, but none of the characters realize that till it's much too late.]]
* ''Series/DoctorWho''
** [[spoiler: Jack Harkness and The Face of Boe]], two vastly different characters that appeared in vastly different stories are implied to be this.
** A number of characters introduced around the same time [[spoiler: (Amy's baby, the girl in the astronaut suit, Amy's childhood friend Mels, all introduced in series 32)]] turned out to be [[spoiler: River Song at different ages]].
* In the second season of ''Series/{{Chuck}}'', the main focus for the protagonist is to find two people: Orion, the creator of the Intersect project whom no one he's spoken to has seen or heard from, and his estranged father, Stephen Bartowski. Naturally, [[spoiler: Stephen is Orion]]

* In Creator/TheUmbilicalBrothers' live show ''Speedmouse'', [[spoiler:the Brothers frequently interact with Tina the Stage Manager, who is heard but never seen, and the Roadie, a voiceless stagehand in a clown costume. The denouement features the Brothers discovering that Tina and the Roadie are one and the same]].

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaALinkToThePast'', Agahnim is introduced as a wizard trying to release [[BigBad Ganon]] from the Dark World. [[spoiler: Agahnim is later revealed to be an alter-ego of Ganon that can operate in the Light World (In the Japanese version, Ganon specifically refers to Agahnim as a bunshin, or split soul).]]
* In ''VideoGame/Sly3HonorAmongThieves'', [[spoiler: Penelope and the Black Baron]].
** [[spoiler: She does it again in [[VideoGame/SlyCooperThievesInTime the fourth game]], where she's the Black Knight.]]
* [[spoiler:King Krichevskoy and Mid-Boss]] in ''VideoGame/DisgaeaHourOfDarkness''.
** In ''VideoGame/Disgaea2CursedMemories'', [[spoiler:Rozalin and the real Overlord Zenon -- the FinalBoss is an impostor -- though Rozalin herself is unaware of this fact.]]
* ''VideoGame/{{Manhunt 2}}'' has [[spoiler:Danny Lamb/Leo Kasper]].
* In ''VideoGame/TalesOfVesperia'', it is revealed that [[spoiler:Raven, trusted member of your party and the guild Altosk, is actually Captain Schwann of the Imperial Knights]].
* ''VideoGame/{{BioShock|1}}'' has [[spoiler:Atlas, who turns out to be Frank Fontaine--an unscrupulous mobster who sparked the Rapture civil war and has been manipulating the player character throughout the game. He's had numerous other aliases in the past as he tricked others into doing his bidding as well]].
* Two examples in ''VideoGame/BioShockInfinite'': Robert and Rosalind Lutece turn out to be not twins, but different instances of the same person, who happened to be of the opposite gender in a different timeline. Also, [[spoiler:the protagonist of the game, Booker [=DeWitt=], and the BigBad Father Comstock likewise turn out to be the same person from different timelines. To kill Comstock for good, Booker has to go back in time to before the two diverged and kill himself]].
* In ''VideoGame/MitsumeteKnight'', the enemy Generals love [[TheReveal to pull this]] : Salishuan the Spy is [[spoiler: Raizze Haimer]] ; Zeelbis the Bloody is [[spoiler: Dolphan's High Priest]] ; and Wolfgario the Ravager is [[spoiler: Dyunos Dolphan]].
* ''VideoGame/{{Xenogears}}'': The mysterious guy in the red gear who calls himself Id turns out to be [[spoiler: your main character Fei's alternate personality.]]
* The Origami Killer in ''VideoGame/HeavyRain'' is [[spoiler:Scott Shelby]].
* ''VideoGame/DevilMayCry 3'' reveals [[spoiler:Arkham is Jester]].
* The [[spoiler:new]] Raincoat Killer in ''VideoGame/DeadlyPremonition'' is [[spoiler:George Woodman]].
* At the very end of ''VideoGame/GhostTrick'', it is revealed that Ray is [[spoiler:an aged Missile from another timeline where everything went wrong]].
* ''VideoGame/TheWorldEndsWithYou'' has the Composer being [[spoiler:Joshua]].
** As well as the mysterious artist CAT being [[spoiler:Hanekoma.]]
* Parodied with Devdan and Danved in ''VideoGame/FireEmblemTellius''. [[CharlieBrownFromOuttaTown Despite doing absolutely nothing to chance his appearance]], Danved ''still'' claims [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial he's not Devdan.]] Played straight with [[spoiler: The BlackKnight and General Zelgius, and Sephiran and Lehran.]]
* In ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'', Shepard inquires about the location of their friend and ally Garrus Valkarian, only to be told that he disappeared a while ago. Not long after, they are sent to recruit [[spoiler:an Omega vigilante called Archangel. Yup, one and the same]].
* Perhaps the most famous (and [[AllThereIsToKnowAboutTheCryingGame most commonly spoiled]]) example in [=RPGs=] is probably the PlayerCharacter of ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'', who turns out to have been [[spoiler:the brainwashed and amnesiac Darth Revan--a former BigBad, who was believed to have been killed by the Jedi in the BackStory--]] all along.
* ''VideoGame/{{Smite}}'': In the Mayan mythology, one of the Hero Twins Xbalanque (male) is an incarnation of the previous moon deity Awilix (female). In this game, both of them are present and can either fight side by side or each other.
* ''VideoGame/FreddyFazbearsPizzeriaSimulator'' throws a major curve-ball that has reverberations throughout the ''entire franchise'': [[spoiler: Mike Schmidt, Jeremy Fitzgerald, Fritz Smith, the unnamed night guard from the third game AND "Eggs Benedict" are all implied to be aliases of ''the same man''- Michael Afton]].
* There are quite a few examples in ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfHeroesTrailsOfColdSteel'':
** Comrade C, the leader of Imperial Liberation Front is actually none other than [[spoiler:Crow Armbrust, the lazy playboy who's just recently joined your class]].
** Likewise, [[spoiler: the host of Abend Time, Misty and the famous opera singer Vita Clotilde turn out to be one and the same. And not just that, she's also the second Anguis of Ouroboros!]]

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* In a couple of arcs of ''VisualNovel/HigurashiWhenTheyCry'', [[spoiler:Shion]] combines this with [[spoiler:TwinSwitch]] and {{mindscrew}}. [[spoiler:She [[TortureCellar imprisons]] her sister and becomes 'Mion' to the public eye, but continues to contact Keiichi as Shion.]]
* In ''VisualNovel/UminekoWhenTheyCry'', it's heavily implied and later confirmed in the manga that [[spoiler:Beatrice, Shannon and Kanon are all the same person; their true identity is Sayo Yasuda, who originally created them as "characters" that [[AmbiguousGender they]] pretend to be in order to cope with their low self-esteem and gender issues]]. However, in a twist on this trope, [[spoiler:while these three characters are often shown interacting with one another to the viewer, the catch is that no one InUniverse ever sees them together outside of fantasy scenes (which are narrated by Beatrice, so [[UnreliableNarrator you can't trust them]])]].

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* In ''Webcomic/{{Unsounded}}'' we learn the identity of the mastermind behind the First Silver operation, "Delicieu", midway through the first arc. It's not until five chapters later that we learn that name is an alias adopted by [[spoiler:Cutter]], a character we've already met. Later it gets more complicated [[spoiler:when it turns out the original bearer of the name "Delicieu" was a different person, whom Cutter is essentially impersonating.]]

[[folder:Web Original]]
* ''Roleplay/NanQuest'' purposefully plays with reader expectations through this. One of the antagonists introduced early on is a creature called the Pilgrim. [[spoiler:During a later TimeTravel segment, Nan meets a man called Lorenzo, who describes himself as a pilgrim. The obvious assumption is that they are the same person, but this is actually a RedHerring. The Pilgrim is actually Henry, AWolfInSheepsClothing who pretended to be the LoveInterest.]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* [[spoiler:Zuko]]/Blue Spirit from ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender''.
* Robin/Red X in ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans''--initially. [[TheRealRemingtonSteele Then someone else steals the Red X costume]] and never gets unmasked.
* There are two villains in the 2003 version of ''[[WesternAnimation/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles2003 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles]]'': The Shredder and Ch'rell, the evil Utrom prisoner that caused the Utroms to crash land on Earth millennia ago. Guess what is the result?
* In ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales1987'' episode "The Masked Mallard", there is the titular character of the episode gone rogue and a reporter named Lawrence Loudmouth bad mouthing him. [[spoiler:It turns out he's the criminal]].
* In the sixth season of ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'', we meet Lu Kim, the Chinese owner of the Asian restaurant City Wok. Nine seasons later, one episode introduced Dr. Janus, who suffers a severe case of Multiple Personality Disorder. [[spoiler:The same episode reveals that his strongest personality was none other than Lu Kim.]]
* In ''[[WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries The New Batman Adventures]]'' episode "Judgment Day", "The Judge" is revealed to be [[spoiler: Two-Face's new third personality]].
* In season 2 of ''WesternAnimation/TheSpectacularSpiderman'', there's the Master Planner who is the BigBad for a 4-episode story arc. [[spoiler:He turns out to be Doctor Octopus, who's been pretending to be rehabilitated the entire time. He even explains the reason for this double-identity by stating that while Spiderman is looking for the Master Planner, he'll pay less attention to Doc Ock.]]
* On ''WesternAnimation/YogisSpaceRace'', the heroic Captain Good and the villainous Phantom Phink are one and the same, changing into one another at will, but nobody else in the race bothers to question why they are never seen in the same realm. Ditto for their animal sidekicks Clean Cat and Sinister Sludge.
* The first episode of season 2 of ''WesternAnimation/MiraculousLadybug'' reveals that [[BigBad Hawk Moth]] and [[spoiler:Gabriel Agreste]] are one and the same.
* In ''WesternAnimation/StevenUniverse'', season 5 episode 18 reveals that [[spoiler:Rose Quartz]] and [[spoiler:Pink Diamond]] are the same person, in a rather complicated gambit of RunningBothSides that ''really'' didn't go as planned. In a similar vein, [[spoiler:the Pearl from the Crystal Gems who loyally served Rose Quartz turns out to have been Pink Diamond's Pearl, and helped Pink Diamond fake her death]].

[[folder:Real Life]]
* One of the famous Iga ninja is rumored to have done this to confuse his enemies, even going as far as having his subordinates pretend along with him. His alias was a competing ninja leader in the same area.
* With a bit of trope stretching, the morning and the evening star. Who both are Venus.