%% Image selected per Image Pickin' thread: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/posts.php?discussion=1302478740010564600&page=1
%% Please do not change or remove without starting a new thread.
[[quoteright:280:[[Series/TheColbertReport http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tek_jansen_adventures_9477.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:280:[-He's [[SavingTheWorld saved the Earth]], fought [[TheEmpire galactic empires]], and [[ReallyGetsAround obviously had hundreds of girlfriends]].-] ]]
%% The custom title is "Captain Space, Defender of Earth!" with the exclamation point, so don't put an exclamation
%% point after it, or there will be two!

In TheFuture, when mankind has [[SpaceOpera explored the outer reaches of space]], the forces of evil threaten our peace. But never fear, for humanity is under the stalwart protection of the '''parody hero''' of {{Space Opera}}s and serials, known as '''''[[LargeHamTitle Captain Space, Defender Of Earth!]]'''''

Yes, his origins make him a DeadUnicornTrope, based more on [[Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries Captain Kirk]] and Creator/AdamWest's portrayal of Series/{{Batman}} than of the old ComicStrip/FlashGordon or ComicStrip/BuckRogers stories, but that does not stand in the way of his quest ForGreatJustice! Okay, it might, but even if he is an arrogant {{Jerkass}} (meant to mock the [[ValuesDissonance old values]], or [[HollywoodHistory what we think they were]]), that won't stop people from admiring him due to his deep, manly voice, [[LargeHam larger than life mannerisms]], dedication to truth and justice, and some of his trusty gadgets (RayGun mandatory).

When our hero actually is heroic, although sometimes an {{idiot|hero}}, he leads the fight to stop {{Death Ray}}s, alien armadas, SpacePirates, and {{Evil Overlord}}s from destroying TheFederation! Furthermore, he does not need to do this alone, as he is always accompanied by a GirlFriday, a RagtagBunchOfMisfits, or a SpaceCadet, who may also be parodies of their respective archetypes or [[HypercompetentSidekick the true saviors of the day]]!

In animation our hero is often drawn with [[LanternJawOfJustice an exaggerated chin]], a [[TopHeavyGuy top-heavy body]], to show off his space manliness!

And to think that [[ShowWithinAShow Captain Proton]] of ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'' was a more accurate portrayal of the old serials than this {{trope}}!

Compare TheCape, TheAce, RaygunGothic, CaptainSuperhero (which this can overlap if a character is a space hero and a superhero), ForGreatJustice, SpaceX.


[[AC: Anime & Manga]]

* The eponymous ''Anime/SpaceDandy'', though you'd be mistaken if you ever though he was in it ForGreatJustice.

[[AC: ComicBook]]
* ''Comicbook/{{Nexus}}'' has more than a few elements of this, since he was based partly on SpaceGhost.
* The idealized Aryan hero Storm Saxon from the show-within-a-comic in ''ComicBook/VForVendetta''.
* ''Spaceman Spiff'' from ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes''.
* In 1981 ''Comicbook/TwoThousandAD'' had ''Dash Decent'' who was mostly a ''Comicstrip/FlashGordon'' parody, but whose name also suggested ''Comicstrip/DanDare''.
* ''Comicbook/{{Nova}}'' becomes a reconstruction of this in ''Comicbook/{{Annihilation}}.

[[AC: Film -- Live Action]]
* The Prince of Space from ''Film/PrinceOfSpace''.
** Also his CaptainErsatz Space Chief from ''Film/InvasionOfTheNeptuneMen''.
* Bronco from ''GentlemenBroncos''
* Buckaroo Banzai from ''Film/TheAdventuresOfBuckarooBanzaiAcrossThe8thDimension''.

[[AC: Film -- Animated]]
* Uncle Art in ''Disney/MeetTheRobinsons'' (voice, appropriately enough, by Creator/AdamWest) is a subversion--his spaceship is a conveyance for delivering pizza.
* [[TheLancer Buzz Lightyear]] of ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory''
** His {{spinoff}} cartoon ''WesternAnimation/BuzzLightyearOfStarCommand'' is notable for playing the {{trope}} somewhat straight.
* Captain Sternn from ''WesternAnimation/HeavyMetal'', although we don't get to see his [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking exploits]], just the trial.

[[AC: {{Literature}}]]
* ''Literature/HonorHarrington'' has the [[ShowWithinAShow series within a series]] ''Preston of the Spaceways'', often mentioned in the context of warning against stupid heroics. To be told one is "playing Preston of the Spaceways" is ''not'' a compliment.
* The parody was firmly entrenched by the time Creator/RobertAHeinlein wrote ''Literature/TheRollingStones'' in TheFifties: Roger Stone and, later, Grandma Hazel help support the family by writing a deliberately over-the-top three-vee serial in the Captain Space Defender mold.
* In [[TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}} universe]], this is how Literature/CiaphasCain ('''HERO OF THE IMPERIUM!''') is portrayed. Whether he is or not in person is [[UnreliableNarrator debatable.]]
* Used as a joke in-universe in the XWingSeries.
-->"Elassar Targon, ''[[LargeHam master of the universe]]''!"
* The ''Literature/DoctorWhoNewAdventures'' novel ''The Highest Science'' has the Doctor discover a triangular video cassette showing "Captain Millennium" battling "Libidia, Queen of the Virenies", which he considers to be SoBadItsGood. (And when it ends on a cliffhanger with the Captain's assistant being threatened by an evil robot, he concludes it's "almost like real life, in a glamourised sort of way".)
* Toby Frost's Literature/SpaceCaptainSmith, hero of the British Space Empire, is Captain Space with a StiffUpperLip.

* Tek Jansen of ''Series/TheColbertReport'' is a ParodySue who is [[HerCodeNameWasMarySue written by Colbert himself]].
* "Ace" Rimmer ([[CatchPhrase What a guy!]]); Arnold Rimmer's AlternateUniverse self from ''Series/RedDwarf''. [[CatchPhrase Smoke him a kipper, he'll be back for breakfast.]]
* ''Series/CaptainVideo'', the original TV space hero, was PlayedStraight in his billing as an "electronic wizard! Master of time and space! Guardian of the safety of the world!" All this while being the face of the NoBudget DuMont network. His future space uniform was made out of an Army surplus uniform, and one of his weapons was made out of car parts.
* ''Series/StarTrekVoyager''. The holodeck program ''The Adventures of Captain Proton'' was an AffectionateParody of this trope.
-->'''Tom Paris:''' (making a DynamicEntry as the hero) Captain Proton: Spaceman First Class, protector of Earth, scourge of intergalactic evil... at your service.
* ''Captain Zoom'', a MadeForTVMovie, deconstructs this trope pretty thoroughly. Note that Captain Zoom is a parody of ''Series/CaptainVideo'', above - Captain Zoom is set on the ''DuMont'' network, which ''Captain Video'' really ran on.

[[AC: NewspaperComic]]
* ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes'': Calvin's Spaceman Spiff persona, who doesn't defend Earth so much as get randomly captured and shot down on faraway planets.
* Comic strip character ''BrewsterRockitSpaceGuy!''

[[AC: VideoGames]]
* Named for '''CAPTAIN GORDON, DEFENDER OF EARTH!''' of ''VideoGame/DisgaeaHourOfDarkness''.
* Captain Qwark of ''VideoGame/RatchetAndClank''
* ''VideoGame/ChibiRobo'': Drake Redcrest is an action figure from a ShowWithinAShow.
* ''VideoGame/CaptainCommando'' mixes this with {{Tokusatsu}} tropes.
* The title character of ''VideoGame/{{Blasto}}'' (not to be confused with the arcade game of the same name).
* ''SpaceAce''
* ''Captain Cosmos'' from ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 3}}''. Posters even showed the time slot of his show to be identical to the original air time of ''Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries''. In the fifth DLC, one of the major {{NPC}}s is a big fan.
* [[PlayerCharacter Commander Shepard]] in ''Franchise/MassEffect'' is a modern {{Reconstruction}} of this trope, alongside the myriad of other space sci-fi reconstructions that Mass Effect is famous for.

[[AC: WebOriginal]]
* ''WebAnimation/HomestarRunner'' has "Space Captainface, pretender of the galaxies", Strong Bad's alter ego as head astronaut/poster boy for Strong Badia's space program, the SBASAF (Strong Badian Administration of Some Aluminum Foil, pronouced "sbace-aff").

[[AC: WesternAnimation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/AtomicBetty'', to add to the retro-futuristic appeal of the show.
* Franchise/{{Ben 10}} and specially it sequels are known to play this trope straight. [[TheMenInBlack The Plumbers]] are a secret SpacePolice that deals with different inter-planetary issues, they travel between planets fighting against the bad guys with a different set of weapons or alien superpowers. It's clear that Ben wants to be like this, as he wanted to join in the first series a special organization that was mostly a lighthearted parody of this (They were portrayed rather cartoonish but still capable and useful) and in the flashforward episodes he is seen as a straight example of this trope. The sequel series ''WesternAnimation/Ben10AlienForce'' and ''WesternAnimation/Ben10UltimateAlien'' shows a very diverse set of Plumbers with many of them falling squarely on this trope.
** With the increasing SpaceOpera elements in the series, this is seen as a logical progression, inter-planetary travelling became a standard of the series, and many of the villians in the show are classical sci-fi enemies that must be dealt with a regular space hero.
* ''WesternAnimation/DuckDodgers'', in both [[WesternAnimation/DuckDodgersInTheTwentyFourthAndAHalfCentury the original cartoon]] and its TV series SpinOff.
** DuckDodgers may very well be the UrExample of this trope as well.
* Major Courage of "Courage of the Cosmos", a ShowWithinAShow in the ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales'' episode, "[[Franchise/StarTrek Where No Duck Has Gone Before]]".
* Zapp Brannigan of ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'', although he is more explicitly a parody of [[Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries Captain Kirk]] (his character was originally pitched as "What if Creator/WilliamShatner was captain of the Enterprise rather than Kirk?).
* [[WesternAnimation/RenAndStimpy Commander Hoek and Cadet Stimpy]]
* The "Starboy and the Captain of Outer Space" movie-within-a-show in ''WesternAnimation/HomeMovies''.
* [[AwesomeMcCoolName Crash Nebula]] in a ShowWithinAShow of ''WesternAnimation/TheFairlyOddParents''.
* ''SpaceGhost'' is a rare example that plays this trope completely straight.

[[AC: Other]]
* ''Website/TheOnion'': Crash Comet, Space Commander From The Year Two Thousand, nemesis of EvilOverlord opinion columnist [[http://www.theonion.com/personalities/gorzo-the-mighty,1026/ Gorzo the Mighty]].