Mentor Archetype

Sagacity is a good trait.

A more experienced advisor or confidante to a young, inexperienced character, particularly to a hero. Named after Mentor, Telemachus' elderly advisor in The Odyssey, who was actually Athena in disguise. Not to be confused with certain green slug things obsessed with money.

A list of subtypes can be found on the Mentors page.

See also: The Obi-Wan


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     Comic Books  

  • Shazam, from Shazam!
  • Surprisingly, Wolverine is this to several generations of X-Men, being a father-figure to a number of the teenaged female members.

     Fan Fiction  

  • Takamachi Nanoha Of 2814: Superman is an older advisor for Nanoha. She smugly notes how her mentor can actively assist her "which other Magical Girls only dream about".
  • The Vocaloid fanfiction Vocal Vision has Luka as this for Miku. Also Gakupo for Luka and Haku.


  • In Dragon Queen, the old man tries to be this, but is hilariously ineffective.
  • Trope Namer: Mentor himself or possibly Athena herself in The Odyssey.
  • The Sisters of Orion, especially Vasja'ri, in Alterien filled this role for Oberon and the other early Alteriens.
  • A few people played this role for Caspian in Astral Dawn. The most notable mentors he had were Magali, Peleus and Ixchel.
  • Gandalf in "Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit" plays this role to Bilbo and Frodo Baggins, and indeed to many of the Fellowship in Lot R.
  • Haymitch Abernathy to Katniss and Peeta in The Hunger Games. All past victors are brought back each year to mentor the new tributes from their district, though Haymitch definitely keeps this up long after the Games themselves are over.
  • A Mage's Power
    • Basilard is a squad five senior. His job is to teach Eric, Tiza, and Nolien how to be proper mercenaries and develop their respective skills.
    • Dengel is a classical example in that he is both older than dirt and regarded as a sage. He teaches Eric high-level and esoteric forms of magic.
  • The Reynard Cycle: Reynard and Isengrim play this role to several characters throughout the series. Notably, Isengrim mentors Reynard, and vice versa.
  • Soul Seekers: Paloma, Daire's grandmother, is this.
  • In Jeramey Kraatz's The Cloak Society, Lone Star was this to the Junior Rangers. Alex realizes how much when he comes to talk Alex out of his My God, What Have I Done? reaction to having caused a death.

     Live Action TV  

  • Angel: Lorne, sort of.
  • Giles, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, is a watcher. His job is to train a slayer.
  • Megan in Privileged becomes this to the twins as well as their tutor.
  • Hornblower has two important mentor figures in the miniseries adaptation Horatio Hornblower:
    • Captain Pellew takes a special interest in Hornblower because he sees a promising officer in him. It's with the interesting twist that he sometimes pretends to be furious with Horatio just to mess with him. It takes Horatio some time to figure out when Pellew is joking.
    • Matthews is Da Man among lower deck characters. He can offer his insight even to officers who respect him and listen to him because Matthews is experienced, reasonable, respectful and concerned for the good of the ship.
  • In The Shazam!/Isis Hour there was a character actually named (or at least called) "Mentor." And he drove around the country in his RV with a young kid he wasn't related to. And no one ever seemed to find that odd.


  • The six original Turaga from BIONICLE to their respective Toa warriors and the adventure-seeking Takua.

     Video Games  

  • Wynne in Dragon Age: Origins if the player wishes. Verges on a parent/child relationship with a mage protagonist.


  • In Freefall, Florence explains to Helix that space is unforgiving and he must learn from Sam, who has been there before, and ask Florence whenever he doesn't understand why Sam is doing something. Sam finds it briefly cool to be a mentor before he realizes that it could also be Florence assigning him a watchdog.
  • Lord Frey from Alfdis And Gunnora seems to be something of a mentor to young Alfdis.

     Western Animation  

Alternative Title(s):

Mentor, The Mentor