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[[quoteright:350:[[Film/YoungGuns http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/06_15000313_0b1b99_2524642a.png]]]]

->''"The graveyards are full of boys who were very young... and very proud."''
-->-- '''Vin''', ''[[Film/TheMagnificentSeven1960 The Magnificent Seven]]''

The Young Gun is the Western equivalent of the KidSamurai or NinjaBrat: a younger, less-awesome version of TheGunslinger, looking to make a name for himself. Expect him to be [[HotBlooded hot-headed]] and [[LeastIsFirst impetuous]]. He will probably attach himself to an older, more experienced character, looking up to him as a mentor figure, only to be told that [[AdventureRebuff this is no kind of life for anyone and that he should get out while he still can]].

The Young Gun differs from his counterpart TheGunfighterWannabe in that he actually ''has'' what it takes to be a gunslinger, but just needs a little training/experience/maturity in order to get up to speed. TheGunfighterWannabe, by contrast, lacks the talent or temperament to make it as a gunslinger and his attempt to try to make a name for himself despite the warnings of his elders generally doesn't end well.

Outside the realm of Westerns, this trope all too often overlaps with ChildSoldier.



[[folder:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
* ''Manga/KatekyoHitmanReborn''
** Subverted with the eponymous character, since he [[spoiler:was an adult that was cursed and turned into an infant. He ''is'' the mentor, even in his infant state.]]
** Played straight with Lambo, the 5-year old hitman with an arsenal of weapons stored in his afro. His target Reborn does not even care enough to not be amused.
* Colt from ''Anime/SaberRiderAndTheStarSheriffs''.
* Hot Shot from ''Anime/TransformersArmada''.
* Yuna of ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'', who proved herself to be very talented at fighting with GunsAkimbo during the Mages vs Martians game and has continued to wield the guns she used then even after the Mahora Festival. However, she still has a long way to go before she reaches the likes of [[TheGunslinger Mana]] or even the [[ShootTheBullet gun-using mage teacher]].
* Teana at the start of ''Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaStrikers''. It took some time and [[GetAHoldOfYourselfMan a few knocks to the head]] for her to grow out of her hot-headed recklessness and [[TookALevelInBadass mature]] to a truly effective Gunslinger.
* ''Anime/{{Doraemon}}'' (yeah): This is, out of all people in the world, ''[[ThisLoserIsYou Nobita]]'' whenever the cast travel to a Western-y age/planet/dimension/whatever. Boy might be a total loser in other aspects of life, but when the plot requires that someone be shot, he does the shooting competently.
* ''Manga/OsomatsuKun'' : promo art (and even chapters themselves) feature the Matsunos and Chibita with pistols/guns, and even a memorable scene from the 60’s anime featured Chibita pulling out a machine gun.

* In the MarvelUniverse there was Jeff Packard a.k.a. Understudy, one-time sidekick to the Rawhide Kid.
* The Kid, one of the Alamo Renegades in Creator/MarvelComics ''Western Gunfighters''.
* Kit Willer from the Italian comic ''ComicBook/TexWiller''.

* Chico from the movie ''[[Film/TheMagnificentSeven1960 The Magnificent Seven]]'', the Western version of [[KidSamurai Katsushiro]] from ''Film/SevenSamurai''.
* Fee "The Kid" Herrod in ''Film/TheQuickAndTheDead''
* The Schofield Kid in ''Film/{{Unforgiven}}''
* Hunt Bromley in the movie ''Film/TheGunfighter''
* Morgan Earp as he is portrayed in movies like ''Film/{{Tombstone}}'' and ''Film/WyattEarp''.
* Marty [=McFly=] in ''Film/BackToTheFuturePartIII'' with the [[SubvertedTrope subversion]] that he ''does'' get out while he still can.
* Colorado Ryan (Ricky Nelson) from ''Film/RioBravo''. A slight subversion in that Wayne says about him: "It's nice to see a smart kid for a change." and Stumpy agrees. "Yeah, he's not like the usual kid with a gun."
* More of a Midwestern example (since the character is from Missouri): Tom Sawyer in ''Film/TheLeagueOfExtraordinaryGentlemen''
* UsefulNotes/BillyTheKid was portrayed this way in Film/TheThreeStooges film ''The Outlaws Is Coming''.
* ''Film/TheElusiveAvengers'' from the titular Russian ostern.
* Scott in ''Day of Anger''.
* ''Film/YoungGuns'' and ''Film/YoungGunsII'' have Billy the Kid as the personification of this trope.
* Cotton and his gang from ''Film/OnceUponATexasTrain''.
* Jake in ''Film/{{Silverado}}'' is younger and brasher than the more seasoned gunfighters in the cast, but also the flashiest shooter.
* {{Lampshaded}} in ''Film/ColdMountain'':
-->'''Inman:''' I will not shoot you, but nor am I walking down that mountain looking over my shoulder for you.
-->'''Bosie:''' That's what you call a conundrum. I tell you what I've got on my side.
-->'''Inman:''' What have you got on your side?
-->'''Bosie:''' The confidence of youth.
* "Turkey", one of the Dancing Kid's gang in ''Film/JohnnyGuitar''. When Vienna (Creator/JoanCrawford) tells him he's still a boy, he tries to prove he's a man by shooting at saltshakers off a table. Johnny Guitar(Sterling Hayden) rushes in and shoots the gun out of his hand.
* Parodied in the backstory of the "[[FastestGunInTheWest Waco Kid]]" in ''Film/BlazingSaddles'': TheGunfighterWannabe that finally managed to defeat him (and humiliated him by [[ShotInTheAss shooting him in the ass]], turning him into TheAlcoholic), was a ''[[EnfanteTerrible six-year-old kid with a gun]]'' (in his defense, the Waco Kid WouldntHurtAChild-the other (literal) kid just happened to exploit that).
* Bud Elder, the youngest of the Elder brothers in ''Film/TheSonsOfKatieElder'': a hot-headed 17 year old.
* Chico Bonnell from ''Film/FortyGuns'' has all of the skills needed to be a gunfighter—-having been taught be his big brother Griff—-but Griff wonders if he has the mindset needed to accompany it.

* Ironically, in ''Franchise/TheDarkTower'' series, kid gunslinger Jake is ''not'' the YoungGun. That role falls to the older (twenty-something) Eddie, who otherwise fits the part to a T.
* The Creator/JTEdson character Waco is a hard-eyed youngster of about sixteen when he is first encountered, and already has several notches on his gunbelt, all of them nominally "fair fights" but several, as he later admits, for no good reason at all. He reforms after being pulled out from in front of a cattle stampede.

* John "J.D." Dunne from ''Series/TheMagnificentSeven'' [[RecycledTheSeries series]].
* "Whip" Morgan from ''Series/TheAdventuresOfBriscoCountyJr''.
* ''Series/TheYoungRiders'' had a young James (AKA Wild Bill) Hickok, and a young Jesse James.
* Deputy Johnny [=McKay=] is this in early seasons of ''Series/{{Lawman}}''. He gains maturity as the show goes on.

* Music/{{Gorillaz}} has a song ''Kids With Guns'', from ''Music/DemonDays'', which is about the dangers of children and teenagers with guns in RealLife.

* [[Franchise/MetalGear Major Ocelot]] matches up to this in ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid3''.
* Axl of the ''VideoGame/MegaManX'' series fits this trope to a T.
* Hoopz Barkley, the [[ItMakesSenseInContext Chosen One 12-year-old son of Charles Barkley]], in ''VideoGame/BarkleyShutUpAndJamGaiden''.

* The Wandering Dogs, Oliver, Charles and Nina in ''VisualNovel/RoseGunsDays''. They work for the mafia organisation Primavera and dream of becoming legends like their mentor Wayne Uedera. While they rarely actually use guns, they prove to be very talented in their own fields and succeed in several dangerous missions. [[spoiler:[[KilledOffForReal It doesn't end well for Oliver.]]]]

* Gordito in ''Webcomic/TheAdventuresOfDrMcNinja'' subverts or parodies this trope, being very capable and badass as the KidSidekick to a [[BunnyEarsLawyer ninja-doctor]] and occasionally fighting alongside said doctor's CrazyPrepared ninja family.
** [[http://drmcninja.com/archives/comic/17p86 He pulls off things like picking off each and every member of a SkyPirate crew one by one when the [=McNinjas=] accidentally forget and leave him behind during a mission. He flies the ship back to base on his own, arriving just as the realize they forgot him.]]

[[folder: WesternAnimation]]
* Fievel daydreams about being a Young Gun at the beginning of ''WesternAnimation/AnAmericanTail: Fievel Goes West'', complete with his hero Wylie Burp telling him to get out while he still can, and Fievel blatantly disobeying him and shooting out a gang of villainous cats.
* Boba Fett in ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsTheCloneWars'' ''oh so very much''. Eventually he [[YoungAndInCharge becomes a leader of a group of older bounty hunters]].

[[folder:Real Life]]
* UsefulNotes/BillyTheKid: The infamous outlaw may have been the first infamous example of this trope. From age 17 on he committed several murders and was shot dead himself at age 21.