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->''Watching John with the machine, it was suddenly so clear. The Terminator [[ImplacableMan would never stop]]. It would never [[DisappearedDad leave him]], and it would never [[AbusiveParents hurt him, never shout at him, or get drunk and hit him]], or [[WhenYouComingHomeDad say it was too busy to spend time with him]]. It would always be there. [[UndyingLoyalty And it would die to protect him.]] Of all the would-be fathers who came and went over the years, this thing, this machine, was the only one who measured up. In an insane world, it was the sanest choice.''
-->--'''Sarah Connor''', ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay''

An amazingly large number of children in the media suffer from ParentalAbandonment. Other children are "lucky enough" to have both parents, but unfortunately live in worlds where there are no HappilyMarried families. For most such children, life is an endless series of disappointments and let-downs. A lucky few, though, manage to find a Parental Substitute.

A Parental Substitute is an adult friend who fills the children's lonely life with [[GoodParents guidance and (often) love]]. They guide the child and teach them how to stand on their own feet, how to have fun, and how to not be so bothered by the fact that Mommy or Daddy isn't around (or ignores them). If the parent is [[DeceasedParentsAreTheBest dead]], they may have known him and are able to answer when the child says TellMeAboutMyFather. They often tell the kid they are SoProudOfYou. Usually, by the end of the story, the Parental Substitute leaves as well, but at that point the kid is able to stand on their own two feet.

This trope is often a feature of {{Tear Jerker}}s, especially if it follows TakeCareOfTheKids. If it's an older sibling who's taken over the parental role, that's PromotionToParent. The OldRetainer may take over this role in event that his employer's children are suffering from ParentalAbandonment. If an entire society has teens become parental substitutes, that's a TeenageWasteland. If the child gets into a big argument with the substitute, expect to hear "YoureNotMyFather" by the time things get really heated.

ImaginaryFriend is often involved. If the Parental Substitute decides to make their status official, as it were, the kid becomes HappilyAdopted.

Compare ChildrenRaiseYou (for less willing parental figures), PromotionToParent (when the parental substitute is a sibling), LikeASonToMe, TeamMom, TeamDad.


[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* In ''AxisPowersHetalia'', China raises some of the East Asian nations, but they see him more as a brother than a father. In fact, Korea refers to China as "Aniki" ("Bro"), a rather informal term for "older brother": this is pretty important since the others don't fully acknowledge China as a brother - Japan and Macau call him "Mr. China" while Taiwan and Hong Kong refer to him as "teacher".
** Same with England and young America. Despite what bash-happy [[ParentalIncest might tell you]], they also have an older brother/younger brother relationship, with America at first calling England "onii-chan" and later telling him that they're not brothers anymore.
** To a degree, Hungary and Austria were like this towards North Italy when he was a young child. Also Spain, to South Italy.
* In ''Manga/{{Basilisk}}'', male lead Gennosuke Koga is raised and trained by both his grandfather Danjou and his maternal uncle Hyouma Muroga, who was just out of his teens when he took up the role. His girlfriend Oboro, on the other hand, is raised by a nanny (who later dies) and her grandmother Ogen. Also, Oboro's fellow Iga ninja Koushirou was pretty much raised by his EvilMentor, Tenzen.
* In ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'', [[BloodKnight Kenpachi]] could be seen as this to [[CuteBruiser Yachiru]] and [[SupremeChef Kirio Hikifune]] is this to [[BrattyHalfPint Hiyori Sarugaki]]. [[EccentricMentor Urahara]] is this to [[SmallGirlBigGun Ururu]] and [[HotBlooded Jinta]].
* Daikichi of ''BunnyDrop'' acts as the father figure of Rin, a young abandoned relative he took in and raised (before [[WifeHusbandry eventually becoming]] [[NotBloodSiblings her love interest]]). He also becomes the father figure Rin's friend boy named Kouki, so much so that Kouki proudly declares that he would be happy for Daikichi to be his father, and when his mother does remarry, he still considers Daikichi more like his dad than his actual step-father.
* In the ''CaptainTsubasa'' manga, Misugi's girlfriend Yayoi (who is stated to be a nursing student in university) temporarily becomes this to Hyuga's younger siblings when [[spoiler: Hyuuga's mother becomes seriously sick and, due to his conflicts at work, Hyuga (who had a PromotionToParent in the past) can't directly take care of them.]]
* ''CodeGeass'': WordOfGod from the staff as well as C.C.'s Japanese voice actor categorize [[MagnificentBastard Lelouch]] [[ChessMaster Lamperouge]] and C.C.'s relationship as mother and son. In lead-up finale episode she remarks to an Ex-comrade in the final battle that she doesn't know if she loves him. Multiple times she has been shown to be there for him. She's seen comforting Lelouch in non-romantic ways [[spoiler:like after he performed a MercyKill on an accidentally Geassed Euphemia.]] In season 2 when the audience [[spoiler:gets a look at lelouch's mother who is revealed to be just as much of a ManipulativeBastard as his father]] you can easily see who is the more genuinely affectionate and maternal figure. [[spoiler: Hint: C.C. and not the [[AbusiveParents actual mother.]]]] In fact,[[spoiler: 10 min into episode 21 of R.2 Marianne is peppering her words with [[BlatantLies sugary bullshit]] to get him to agree to hand over [[MacGuffinGirl C.C.]] so that she and Charles can finalize their AssimilationPlot]]. But thanks to RelationshipWritingFumble, it look like [[ShipTease something else]] to some fans.
* In DGrayMan, [[spoiler: Cross is this to Allen when he first found the boy]] as shown in Chapter 206, where said character admitted to having no idea how to care for a child. [[spoiler: Cross]] eventually learns how to cook and do the laundry, making this more of a promotion to housewife.
* Piccolo of ''DragonballZ'' is one to Son Gohan, the offspring of his one-time enemy Son Goku. However, it's not mutually agreed on- Piccolo takes Gohan under his wing by force after Goku sacrifices himself to kill Raditz so that he can train for the arrival of the Saiyans. Fortunately, Gohan toughens up and Piccolo softens down. Soon, they are truly close enough for Piccolo to be considered a father figure. Gohan even chooses to wear a battle costume like Piccolo's rather than Goku's gi when facing Cell.
* In ''FruitsBasket'', martial artist Kazuma Sohma takes Kyo in and serves as his father figure. Eventually, he also takes Rin in.
** And before that, Rin was "rescued" from her AbusiveParents by Kagura and her parents. The rescue of sorts ''was'' genuine, but poor Rin was so messed up by her abusive situation that she simply couldn't accept or fit in with a more stable/happy family, and distanced herself from them.
** Yuki's older brother Ayame offers to act as a literal Parental Substitute, to make up for the years when he was an AloofBigBrother to Yuki. He seals the deal by showing up the parent-teacher conference and stopping their domineering mother from planning Yuki's whole life. [[spoiler:And in time, Yuki realizes that Tohru, though his own age, was more of mother-figure to him than a love interest.]]
* In Manga/FullmetalAlchemist, it's mentioned that even before their mom died, and ''especially'' after, the Rockbells' home was a home to the Elrics as well.
** Izumi Curtis also seems to consider the Elrics to be surrogate sons... not that this means she's ever [[ToughLove going to go easy on them]].
** There's also plenty of fanfic that promotes Roy Mustang to father figure for any of the teenage protagonists.
*** One of the novels actually has Ed being mistaken for Roy's son, and the parallels are made pretty clear.
** In [[Anime/FullmetalAlchemist the 2003 anime version]], Sloth is this to Wrath.
* Chibi from ''Anime/GingaNagareboshiGin'' comes to love his foster dad Moss the mastiff after [[spoiler:his father Kurojaki dies]].
* In ''Anime/GirlsUndPanzer'', during the "Little Army" prequel manga, it's shown that Sakuyo, one of the Nishizumi family maids, was this to Miho, providing her advice and support.
* In ''GundamSeedDestiny'', Gilbert Durandal is maybe Rey's adoptive father, but at least he is a parental figure for both Rey and Shinn. It can be interpreted as manipulation, but he appears to genuinely love them. [[spoiler:He actually forgives Ray for ''shooting him'', as in "forgive just before dying"]].
* Quatre from GundamWing has ''four'' of these: the four highest-ranked members of the Magnac corps, led by TeamDad Rashid.
* Although Nagi wishes he were more of a boyfriend, Hayate seems to be playing this role for her in ''Manga/HayateTheCombatButler''. Maria is her mother figure, though the role originally seemed to be that of big sister.
** Hinagiku and Yukiji found the Katsura's to be both willing Parental Substitute and get to play the HappilyAdopted card when their parents dropped a large debt on them and disappeared.
** In the character profiles, Sakuya is said to have been raised by her two butlers and her nurse, instead of her parents, while also serving as the parents to her siblings.
* In the ''{{Hellsing}}'' manga and OVA, Alucard acts a little like a father surrogate and mentor to Seras Victoria, who is orphan and has lived in orphanages since her parents' terrible deaths. Integra Hellsing also fills in as TeamMom on occasion (at the ending is more prominent when she literally lectures Seras as if a child) when she's not having LesYay with her.
** Hell, even the ''LesYay'' moments made her seem motherly; feeding Seras her blood from her index finger as a mother would feed a baby from their...well, nipple. The way Integra spoke to Seras in the manga during that scene was also ''very'' motherly.
** Father Alexander Anderson acts like a surrogate father and teacher to Maxwell, Heinkel, Yumie, the rest of Iscariot, and the children at his orphanage in Rome. His most human and compassionate moments involve the children he's raised, which includes the majority of Iscariot's ranks. It's the main reason why they're so loyal to him.
*** His final words were to remind his children to say their prayers before bed.
* Dan'l Baboon from ''KimbaTheWhiteLion'' acts as a father figure to the title character.
* Before the events of ''MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha'', [[EvilMatriarch Precia's]] CatGirl familiar Linith takes this role for [[TheWoobie Fate]], showering her with the love that she didn't get from her [[PsychoElectro psychotic]] mother. Linith eventually dies, fading away after her contract to train Fate and make Bardiche is fulfilled.
* In ''Anime/MazingerZ'', Dr. Juuzo Kabuto raised his grandsons after their parents died in a lab experiment gone wrong. After his death, Prof. Yumi took Kouji and Shiro in. However Kouji was Shiro's main parental substitute (although somewhat absent, since Kouji had to split his time between taking care of the household chores, going to school and fighting Mechanical Beasts). After the end of the series, Kouji and Sayaka left Japan for a while, and Shiro was left behind in the beginning of ''Anime/GreatMazinger''. He was taken in by [[spoiler:Professor Kenzo Kabuto]], which is ironic, since he [[spoiler:his -and Kouji- REAL father.]] In ''Anime/UFORoboGrendizer'', Dr. Umon found and took Duke Fleed in, treating him like his son.
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}''
** Iruka Umino couldn't forgive Naruto for a long time since he was the living seal for the Kyuubi, which killed his parents. As years passed, though, Iruka slowly came to appreciate Naruto for the person he was, realized that aside of the Kyuubi issue they were NotSoDifferent, and by the time the series starts he acts like a surrogate father to him.
** The same goes for Jiraiya, who spent three years training Naruto and spending time with him- probably the first period in Naruto's life where there was constantly an adult around to look after him. [[spoiler:When Jiraiya dies, Naruto is ''devastated'' and says he finally understands what Sasuke went through.]]
** To a lesser degree, Kakashi might also count as one. He made sure Naruto ate vegetables pre-timeskip, and post-timeskip the two develop a close bond and are highly protective of each other.[[spoiler: Given that Naruto ends up becoming Kakashi's successor as Hokage and it's implied that even after that Kakashi still helps him out and advices him, it's safe to say their friendship/familial bond is still going strong after all those years.]]
*** Since Naruto's father is generally seen by Fanon as Kakashi's parental substitute, it might be more accurate to say Naruto and Kakashi have a brotherly bond.
** Kurenai Yuuhi acts as a surrogate mother to Hinata, after Hinata's strict father all but abandons her.
** It seems likely that Gai and Lee have a relationship along these lines.
** Fanon occasionally has this as a general relationship between the teachers and students, due to the high number of orphaned kids and kids whose family lives are either awful or unknown.
* In ''NatsumeYuujinchou'', the Fujwara couple is a loving family for Natsume. Since they've adopted him, it's the first time he has felt like he's part of a real family.
* In ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'', Misato Katsuragi is this to Shinji Ikari and Asuka Langley Soryu, although Shinji seems to end up taking care of her just as often.
** In The third RebuildOfEvangelion movie, [[spoiler: not so much. She completely disowns him after a caused the Third Impact, to the point that she refers to him as "Subject DM-03" and very nearly kill him. As if his ''biological'' parents abandoning him wasn't enough...]]
* Happens a lot in ''OnePiece'' as most of the characters are [[ParentalAbandonment orphaned or abandoned at a young age]]. The most powerful example would have to be Nami's foster mother [[MeaningfulName Bellemere]] who sacrificed herself for her daughters because she refused to deny that they were hers. Genzo is sometimes seen as a father-figure to Nojiko and Nami.
** Tons of others worth noting, though. It happens so often it practically invites you to speculate on what Oda's childhood home life was like.
*** Luffy towards Shanks, since [[spoiler: his father's busy with [[RebelLeader his "job"]], and his grandfather was a well-intentioned yet ''really'' bad parental figure]]. They were so close, many [[{{Jossed}} thought they would be revealed as actual father and son]] (especially given that they even looked quite a bit alike early on, though ArtEvolution has made their faces more distinct). Luffy and Ace both also had a foster mother in their youth, again because [[spoiler: Luffy's dad was gone and his grandpa simply couldn't it in parental-like shoes despite caring for them]]. Ace also finds this with his captain Whitebeard, since his father, whom he deeply resented anyway, is dead.
** Franky towards Tom, before... stuff happened...
** There's also Sanji and Zeff, Robin and both Clover and Saul, maybe Zoro and the dojo owner, Chopper and Hiriluk... in fact, the only two members of the main crew that don't appear to have ever had a parental substitute of some sort are Usopp and Brook.
* ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'' is especially bad about this, with insane amounts of one-shot characters clearly being raised by a (often same-gendered) grandparent. With the original main cast, we also had Brock who experienced ''double'' ParentalAbandonment, and got [[PromotionToParent promoted to parent]] for all of his younger siblings. Reversed with Misty, whose parents are mysteriously not in the picture and her older sisters are the ones who got the [[PromotionToParent promotion]] instead and they're not good at it at all. Also, Gary is the only recurring character to have the "raised by a single grandparent" thing. Fleshed out a bit in the manga, where it's revealed that [[ConvenientlyAnOrphan both his biological parents are dead.]]
** Although the manga isn't canon.
** Of the main protagonists, only May and Max have both their parents, but Brock and Cilan do have siblings. Of course that's something that's recurring with the games as well.
* Hiko Seijuro XIII can be seen as parental substitute to orphaned [[Manga/RurouniKenshin Kenshin]], who he rescued, renamed and took under his wings in age of 8. Hiko may be too proud to admit it, but it’s clear he cares for his baka deshi and will return from [[RetiredBadass retirement]] to help him.
** Kaoru tries to be this to Yahiko, an ex StreetUrchin whom she and Kenshin rescued from being a orderline child slave to low-ranked delinquents. It doesn't always work.
** Similarly, Okina was a grand-parental substitute to Misao.
* In ''Manga/SakiShinohayuDawnOfAge'', after Shino's mother disappears, she's taken in by her uncle Kousuke, who's her mother's brother. [[ParentsAsPeople He tries the best he can as a single father]] despite also holding down a job and searching for his sister, and while he mistakenly assumes that mahjong does nothing more than remind Shiho of her MissingMom, he sees the error of his ways and apologizes.
* In ''Manga/SangatsuNoLion'', Akari Kawamoto, who is already acting as a parental figure for her two younger sisters, also serves as a surrogate mother figure for the meek, solitary Rei Kiriyama, even lecturing Rei when he does inconsiderate things like not answering the phone when he's sick for several days.
* [[ActionGirl Balsa]] in ''Anime/SeireiNoMoribito'' varies between this and CoolBigSis to the young [[ShelteredAristocrat Prince Chagum]], who she has been hired to protect. At one point in the series, [[spoiler:she even gives a knife to him, a symbolic tradition of coming-of-age in her home country.]] Tanda even points out that her vow to protect him from all harm for as long as is necessary means she is, for all intents and purposes, his mother.
* In ''ShoulderACoffinKuro'', the titular heroine and her sidekick come across a pair of very young [[ChildrenAreInnocent and very naive]] twin girls and bring the two along on their journey. They find themselves having to run herd on the kids quite a bit, as well as teaching them about the outside world.
* The Baba Yaga arc of ''Manga/SoulEater'' revealed that Sid took in Black Star after the Star Clan was destroyed by Shibusen. However, not much has been made of this relationship in a parent-child sense, though it's evident Sid looks out for Black Star. If his methods do [[HonorBeforeReason seem a]] [[ValuesDissonance little odd]] at times. The reveal made sense, given the attitude towards Black Star taken by both the meister and his partner Nygus.
** Continued in principle by Black Star [[spoiler: taking Angela back to Shibusen]]. More likely to be 'big brother' than 'parent' given the age difference, but Shinigami agreed [[spoiler: she'd be looked after]], and most importantly the thought was [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold there]].
* A few here and there in ''LightNovel/SwordArtOnline''.
** First, any children who were trapped in the game were adopted by friendly players in the City of Beginnings. We see one eventually; a young girl runs an orphanage with thirty or more kids.
** Second, Kirito and Asuna find a little girl named Yui wandering the woods who takes to calling them Poppa and Momma, which they accept quite quickly. [[spoiler:It turns out the girl is actually a therapy program designed to monitor the players' psychological states, but has been glitching because she was forbidden from interacting with the players. She became Yui so that she could be the daughter of two of the only happy players in the game]].
* In ''Anime/TigerAndBunny'', Maverick is this to Barnaby. He is also [[spoiler: the man who killed both of his parents because [[HeKnowsTooMuch they knew about his involvment with Ouroboros]], manipulated his memories into believing the murderer was someone else and, later, into believing ''he'' was the one who raised him when FreezeFrameBonus reveals Barnaby grew up in an orphanage.]] And Barnaby is totally unaware of it.
* In the sequel to ''Manga/TokyoGhoul'', AmnesiacHero Haise Sasaki states that he considers his mentors, [[TheDreaded Arima]] and [[LadyOfWar Akira]] to essentially be his parents.
* In ''Manga/UQHolder'', Yukihime acts as one of these for Touta after his parents died in a car accident.
* In ''VampireKnight'', Yuki has Cross as her adopted father and to an extent, also Kaname.
* Oboe is the Parental Substitute for Hamel in ''ViolinistOfHameln''. It is not obvious for a long, long time, thanks to the Hamel's extreme JerkassFacade and Oboe mostly keeping in the background (not without a reason), but in the end Hamel even directly states that Oboe is only being he'll ever call "father" when confronting his BigBad [[EvilOverlord biological parent]].
* In ''Anime/YuGiOh5Ds'', Yusei, Crow and Jack were taken in by Martha when they were young. Crow himself becomes one to several children.
* Minamoto, the male TeamMom from ''ZettaiKarenChildren'', is one of the best examples of this trope in recent memory.
** Kyousuke, his anti-villain counterpart, is this even more for his followers, at least those who are still pre-adolescent.
* Bear in ''Anime/DotHackSign'' is pretty much the TeamMom. In the real world, he grieves at his broken relationship with his own son, and in the end of the series [[spoiler: becomes Tsukasa's real self legal guardian.]]
* ''TsubasaReservoirChronicle'''s [[TeamMom Fai D. Flourite]] and [[TeamDad Kurogane]] turn into this for Sakura, Syaoran and especially [[spoiler: R!Syaoran/Tsubasa]] in the final arc. They've had the names [[InSeriesNickname Fai-Mommy and Kuro-Daddy]] for most of the series but they fit surprisingly well and they do act as if the three kids were their children. After a certain point [[spoiler: R!]]Syaoran starts to think so as well.
* ''Anime/MobileSuitVictoryGundam'': 12 year old Shakti takes in a baby named Karlmann early in the show, as he was orphaned in a Zanscare attack. Shakti takes care of Karl for the rest of the series (helped now and again by the others, but she's the primary caretaker), and even in the epilogue is still shown raising the child.

* In John Byrne's ''ComicBook/AlphaFlight'', Shaman is the father-figure to Snowbird (a six-year-old adult), which is ironic considering his [[DisappearedDad relationship with his real daughter]]. The daughter's baby-sitter and parental/big sister substitute Heather later on became the leader of Alpha Flight, after her husband (the original leader) died. Her husband has been a father substitute for Wolverine, of all people.
* ''Comicbook/TheAvengers'' has {{Hawkeye}} and CaptainAmerica, which has been alluded to several times in canon. Hawkeye, who had an abusive, alcoholic father and several irresponsible successors of that field, unconsciously sees Captain America as a father figure. This is highlighted whenever Hawkeye has a tough time and Cap is there to give him a pep talk or lecture. The earliest examples of the relationship, in fact, took place as soon as Hawkeye joined the team. He jokingly called Cap "dad" and Cap felt a responsibility to look after him. It doesn't help that Stan Lee initially intended for Hawkeye to be Cap's long-lost illegitimate son.
** Its not uncommon for this to happen with any other young and not-so-young hero too. Bucky, Rick Jones (who himself like Doctor Strange also took care of Hulk when he was in child-like Savage Hulk mode), Spider-Man, and many other young heroes have looked up to Cap as a father and vice versa. He even acted sorta like this to Comicbook/MoonKnight (yes, [[AxeCrazy THAT Moon Knight]]) in the SecretAvengers, being one of the few who didn't see him as nothing but a crazy schizoid and encouraging his more heroic attempts.
* ''Franchise/{{Batman}}'' is chock full of Parental Substitute goodness. Alfred Pennyworth serves as a father-substitute for Bruce Wayne. Bruce Wayne serves as a father-substitute for Dick Grayson, Jason Todd, and Tim Drake (for whom Dick Grayson also serves as a bit of a brother-figure).
** Bruce/Batman is also a father substitute for Cassandra Cain (Batgirl II), who also has a mother substitute in Barbara Gordon (Batgirl I/Oracle).
** Alfred has, through the years, gone back and forth between an objective servant to an adoptive-father-figure and back, depending on the writer. However, it's become very common to portray him as an amalgam of the two - officially a servant, but acting as Bruce's surrogate father. This is shown strongly by Alfred being the only one who can tell Bruce off without any repercussions, and is openly stated by Alfred in the recent ''"Battle for the Cowl"'' arc:
---> '''Superman:''' Alfred, are you alright?
---> '''Alfred:''' Alright?... No, sir, I'm not... my son has died.
*** Bruce acknowledges this as well; in a ''Batman and the Outsiders'' special following ''BatmanRIP'', Bruce has left a prerecorded message for Alfred in case of his death where he calls Alfred his second father, and takes the opportunity to say "Goodbye, Dad".
*** In the first issue of ''Superman/Batman'', Clark's thoughts are about how complicated the relationship between Bruce and Alfred is, and that even he can't understand it completely.
** It seems that now Dick has become [[PromotionToParent promoted to father]] of [[spoiler: Batman's AntiHero son, Damian]].
** Leslie Thompkins is occasionally referred to as a mother figure by Bruce.
** Jim Gordon is sometimes played up as this as well - particularly in one episode of the animated series where Batman says that part of his close connection with Gordon is because Gordon is approximately the same age Thomas Wayne would be were he still alive. As for Alfred, Batman R.I.P. stresses it to the point where [[spoiler:the possibility is raised that Alfred might be Bruce Wayne's true father, if the scandalous rumors spread by the Black Glove are to be believed.]]
** Damian Wayne, Bruce's son, is starting to see Dick Grayson as a mix of an older brother and a father. Especially after [[spoiler: his mother Talia was actually cloning him and deemed him not perfect enough and kicked him out of the Al Ghul's house.]]
** Batman's frequent role as a surrogate father-figure was ultimately deconstructed with Stephanie Brown (Spoiler/Batgirl III). Stephanie was the daughter of the criminal Cluemaster and went into costumed crime-fighting to oppose him, and eventually gravitated into the Bat-family, but after she became Batgirl she realized that Bruce had been a ''horrible'' father figure (She even ''slapped'' him). She [[WhatTheHellHero criticized him on all the manipulation that he put her through, as well as the generally condescending and dismissive attitude he had]], and pointed out that the improvements she has made in her life were in ''spite'' of him, not because of him.
*** During [[ComicBook/{{Batgirl 2009}} her own series]], Oracle/Barbara begins to act as one for Stephanie as well, which is strange considering Steph's mom is very much alive. She also acts like this to Wendy Harris, helping her deal with the loss of her legs and her brother, and help her re-enter the superhero world.
* During Marvel's ''ComicBook/CivilWar'', Tony "Iron Man" Stark and Peter "Spider-Man" Parker fell into a father/son relationship, until [[spoiler:Peter realized he didn't like what Tony was up to and tried to rebel against Stark's superhuman registration initiative.]] After that, they stopped seeing eye-to-eye.
* Comicbook/DoctorStrange has served as this for the Comicbook/IncredibleHulk's simple and childlike Savage Hulk incarnation. The Ancient One may have been a father-figure for Strange himself, judging by all the LikeASonToMe dialogue between them.
* In the ''ComicBook/{{Runaways}}'' series, Nico and Karolina serve this function for Molly and Klara, [[spoiler:particularly in the last arc, "Home Schooling", in which Old Lace dies and Chase abandons the team.]]
* In Gail Simone's ''SecretSix'' series, Bane tries to become a father figure to Scandal after she becomes depressed about the loss of her beloved Knockout. While he's not always good at it, since he never had a normal family life himself, they do eventually end up genuinely caring for each other this way. The fact that Scandal's actual dad is an asshole who doesn't accept her sexuality doesn't hurt either.
* ''{{Spider-Man}}'' is of course filled to the brim with parental substitutes, starting of course with Uncle Ben and Aunt May. After Ben Parker's murder, the irascible J. Jonah Jameson came to assume a quasi-paternal role, eventually playing "bad surrogate dad" to Joe Robertson's "good surrogate dad" (however Jonah, even though he is a notorious skinflint, footed the bill for Peter and Mary Jane's wedding). Gwen Stacy's father, Captain George Stacy, also took a kindly father approacht to Peter (deducing his identity with Spider-Man) until his untimely death. In later years reporter Ben Urich, Ezekiel, Doc Connors (at times, in the Animated Series he even gave MJ away at their wedding), and detective Lamont would all take a fatherly attitudes to him. Not so many mother substitutes, although Betty and Gwen did have a tendency to mother the seemingly shy and insecure Peter Parker, and Aunt Anna functioned as a surrogate mother to Mary Jane.
*** In the movie adaptations, Norman Osborn tried to become Peter's paternal substitute in the first one.
*** Jameson also functioned as a father figure to Betty Brant. Betty's mother used to work as Jameson's secretary, and when she died Jameson gave Betty her mother's job to support herself. When Betty married ''Daily Bugle'' reporter Ned Leeds, Jameson was the one to give her away. She and Ned were PutOnABus after that, and a RunningGag quickly developed that depicted Jameson going through all kinds of hassle trying to find a new secretary, which revealed just how much Jameson depended on Betty's help.
* In the original ''ComicBook/SpiderWoman'' series, Charles Magnus serves this role for Jessica Drew.
* The UrExample in comics has to be Franchise/{{Superman}}'s Earth parents, Jonathan and Martha Kent. While Kal-El would always have powers by virtue of being Kryptonian by birth, the comics stress repeatedly that it was the Kents' ''values'' that made Superman the hero he is. Lampshaded in the "Reign of the Supermen" series with regard to the JerkAss Superboy clone:
-->'''Jonathan Kent''': "No son of ours would act like that, powers or no!"
** Superman, in turn, has taken on this role to {{Supergirl}} and, to some degree, to JimmyOlsen.\\\
Also Nightwing's, if Nightwing: Year One is any indication. After Batman fires him, he goes to see Clark. It's not hard to interpret it as a child getting away from his abusive father (the story portrays Batman as a JerkAss) and instead staying with his mother (the caring, [[NiceGuy nice Superman]]).
* ''ComicBook/{{X-men}}'' Professor Xavier gave this the original five, but especially serves as a father substitute for Cyclops.
** {{Wolverine}} has a tendency to become this to young teammates, especially female ones (Kitty Pryde, Rogue, Jubilee), but also e. g. to Colossus (in a more "tough love" kind of way).
** Also from the X-Men, there's foundling Nightcrawler and his adoptive gypsy family, and his kinda-stepsister Rogue, raised by supervillain couple Mystique and Destiny after running away from home.
** For a while, Scott[=/=]ComicBook/{{Cyclops}} himself would act like this, and occasionally still does. Unfortunately writers proffer writing him as a soldier and military leader rather than anything else so its becoming far less frequent.
* In ''Venom'' we learn that Bennet Brant (Betty Brant's older brother) had a surrogate father-figure in the form of the Crime Master. [[spoiler: This had the unfortunate effect of causing Bennet to take up the Crime Master identity years later when he decided to become a supervillain and continue the legacy of the original. He also took on Jack O'Lantern as a protégé/son-figure; given that Jack O'Lantern is basically an AxCrazy lunatic who runs around with a pumpkin on his head, you can guess how well that turned out]].
* Donald Duck to Huey, Louie and Dewey, and Uncle Scrooge to all four of them. Being raised by uncles or aunts is seen as such a big Disney convention that German Duck fans even coined a pseudo-scholarly term for the process: ''Veronkelung'' ([[{{Nephewism}} "uncleification"]]).
* ''TheFlash'' Wally West considers [[CoolUncle Barry Allen]] as a more of father than his own biological one. In return Barry thinks of him as his own as well. Considering Barry's fate (or Wally's depending on universe), their relationship turns into {{Tear Jerker}} between them.
** There is also Bart Allen, 'Impulse' and later 'Kid Flash' who comes from future. With his father being dead and his mother in future, he considers Max Mercury as his father figure. Like his predecessors Wally and Barry, theirs also ends in tragedy.

[[folder:Fairy Tales]]
* In ''Literature/TheDancingWaterTheSingingAppleAndTheSpeakingBird'', the princes and princess are raised by a deer, which oddly enough does not produce RaisedByWolves. Then, kind-hearted fairies provided her, so perhaps it was magic.

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* ''Fanfic/{{Bait and Switch|STO}}'': Lieutenant Commander Reshek Gaarra's mother [[MissingMom died when he was two]], and his father was an officer in the Bajoran Militia's local garrison and had to go out on maneuvers a week out of every month. He was raised by his father and his paternal aunt Nefris.
* In ''FanFic/HogyokuExMachina'', Isshin feels this way about Ichigo's relationship with [[EmpathicWeapon Zangetsu]]. He asks Yoruichi to describe Zangetsu to him leading to this.
--> "The soul of a fifteen-year-old formed itself a partner according to its own needs and desires, Yoruichi. And when it did…" his voice broke a little "… when it made the being it wanted to fight with for its entire existence… it made a middle-aged man. A teacher. A mentor. Stern and unrelenting, and so damn proud of him it hurts to watch." Everything Isshin had never shown Ichigo he could be. Yoruichi began to understand.
* In ''Fanfic/MarieDSuesseAndTheMysteryNewPirateAge'', toward the end, it is revealed that a woman named Denise was this to [[spoiler:Madelyn]], taking her in, giving her a job, and through being tough but fair, helping to make her a better person, inspiring her so much that [[spoiler:she gave Denise's name to her daughter as her middle name]].
* The Grand Ruler for Lightning Dawn in ''Fanfic/MyLittleUnicorn''. Not that [[TheyWastedAPerfectlyGoodPlot their relationship has any significance on the overall plot]].
* In ''[[http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Fanfic/PokemonTheGreatAdventure Pokemon The Great Adventure]]'', Ash gets one in the shape of Silver, a mysterious tailed man with silver hairs that raises him like his own son and teaches him everything he knows. Even after learning the truth about his legacy, the man is still the only one Ash calls "Father".
* In the ''WesternAnimation/JackieChanAdventures'' fanfiction ''Fanfic/QueenOfAllOni'', Uncle notes that, even if Jackie and Jade aren't aware of it themselves, Jackie loves Jade to the point that he essentially ''is'' her parent in every way except blood.
** Given that Jade herself suffered ParentalNeglect so severe it bordered on [[AbusiveParents abuse]], she on some level does see Jackie as her true father figure. To the point that the [[AnthropomorphicPersonification Aspect]] of her mind known as "Father" looks just like him.
* In the ''Film/BackToTheFuture'' fanfic ''FanFic/IchLiebeDich'', Marty tells Doc that back in 1985, he's more of a father figure to him than George is.
* [[Fanfic/DeliverUsFromEvilSeries Mortality]]: Holmes's parents are never mentioned, so most likely Holmes sees his friend Watson as this.
* In ''FanFic/SophisticationAndBetrayal'', the protagonist's boss Pipe Wrench becomes something of a father figure to him. Pipe Wrench's wife similarly becomes something of a mother figure, and both provide advice on how to deal with various personal problems he encounters.
* Played with in ''FanFic/TheTwilightChild'', when Princess Celestia admits she sees Twilight as a daughter, and Twilight points out she already has parents, whom she loves dearly. Doesn't mean she isn't touched, though.
* In [[Fanfic/TheDearSweetieBelleContinuity "Dear Scootaloo"]], Rainbow Dash was raised more or less personally by Firefly, former Wonderbolt and founder of the Cloudsdale Home for Wayward Pegasi, and as far as she's concerned Firefly ''was'' her mother.
* [[https://www.fanfiction.net/s/4991314/1/Escape-from-the-Hokage-s-Hat Escape from the Hokage's Hat]]: Tsunade to all three of her students (Shizune, Naruto and Hinata). While Shizune is a fairly well adjusted adult, she spends most of her time helping Naruto and Hinata with their own personal issues.
* Rei plays this role in Kiryuuin Chronicles [[http://archiveofourown.org/works/3363740/chapters/7356965]] with Satsuki, Ryuuko, and Nui and has been doing so since birth, raising them more than their parents do. Of course, she does have a reason to be, considering how their parents are.

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* Fish, for Eggs in ''WesternAnimation/TheBoxtrolls''. Eggs indirectly calls the boxtroll his father at one point.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheIronGiant'': Dean is a father-figure/mentor to Hogarth. Hogarth himself has a [[KidWithTheLeash fatherly/big-brother relationship to the giant robot in the title]], who has the mentality of a very young child.
* Baloo acts as this to Mowgli in ''Disney/TheJungleBook'' for the brief time they are together. Prior to him, he was RaisedByWolves, his adoptive father Rama even referring to him as being "like a real son".
* In ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda'', Shifu is to Tai Lung and later Tigress, and Mr. Ping to Po.
** The Soothsayer to Shen in ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda2''. AllInTheManual, though some of her interactions with Shen imply this. You get the feeling that if ''anyone'' else tried to take a bite out of his robes, they would get a knife to the throat.
* In Disney's ''Disney/LiloAndStitch,'' Nani tries to be this for Lilo.
** In the sequels and TV show, [[MadScientist Jumba]] and [[WholesomeCrossdresser Pleakley]] end up as this too in a weird sort of way; Nani has no problems leaving Lilo and Stitch with "Uncle Jumba" and "Aunt Pleakley" when she's busy. David could end up as this (or at least a BigBrotherMentor) since he hang out with them a lot as well and gets ShipTease with Nani.
* In ''WesternAnimation/TitanAE'', the Parental Substitute relationship between Kale and Korso is made even more complicated by the fact that Korso is TheMole.
* Silver is a mentor and father-figure to Jim in ''Disney/TreasurePlanet''. Considering how the story goes, is one of the more turbulent examples, but it all worked out in the most satisfying way possible.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* Part of what makes ''Film/{{Aliens}}'' so touching is Ripley's 'adoption' of Newt. Ripley, being frozen for 50+ years, lost her daughter, and Newt's family were killed by the Xenomorphs, so the two fill the empty spaces in each other's lives. Newt actually calls Ripley "Mommy" by the end of the film.
* Aside from Uncle Ben and Aunt May, Curt Connors acts as one for Peter Parker in ''Film/TheAmazingSpiderMan''. They share a love of science and it becomes clear that Peter desires Connors' approval, [[ParentalAbandonment something he never really got from his dad.]]
* ''Film/{{Babe}}'' the pig is adopted by Fly, a sheepdog. When Fly's pups were put up for sale and she was heartbroken, Babe comforted her by asking if he could call her Mom, which she said yes.
* Henri Ducard to Bruce in ''Film/BatmanBegins'', for a few short years when the boy was in serious need of guidance. [[BrokenPedestal At the end of those years Bruce finds himself disgusted with his ruthlessness.]]
* ''Film/CloakAndDagger'' features super-spy Jack Flack, an [[ImaginaryFriend imaginary mentor]] who amazingly enough looks like Davey Osborne's real dad.
* Vincent Lauria in ''Film/TheColorOfMoney'' eventually sees Eddie Felton as a father figure.
* In the film ''Film/DarkCity'', [[spoiler:Dr. Shrieber literally injects himself into protagonist John Murdoch's life via an "imprint", creating memories of a father figure who taught Murdoch the skills that he uses to fight the Strangers.]]
* In ''Film/ETTheExtraterrestrial'', E.T. himself (itself?) serves as a two-pronged parental substitute, offering fatherly advice and motherly attention simultaneously.
* In ''Film/FindingNeverland'', the Llewelyn Davies boys increasingly look to James Barrie as a father figure.
* The role M plays as a surrogate mother to the [[ConvenientlyAnOrphan orphaned]] Franchise/JamesBond is lampshaded repeatedly in the Daniel Craig films, and is a central theme in ''Film/{{Skyfall}}''. [[spoiler:The BigBad is a former {{MI6}} agent that M handed over to the Chinese after he turned RogueAgent; he's now seeking revenge on his 'mother' for having betrayed him.]]
* Tom Sawyer acquires one of these in Allan Quatermain during the course of ''Film/TheLeagueOfExtraordinaryGentlemen''.
* Siblings Éomer and Éowyn from ''Film/LordOfTheRings'' look at their uncle Théoden as this. Frodo has his Uncle Bilbo and Gandalf too.
** ''Film/TheHobbit'' has Thorin and his nephews, Fíli and Kíli.
* Ray, of ''Film/OffTheBlack'', starts to take on the role of father to David.
* Aunt Lucy and Uncle Pastuzo are this to ''Film/{{Paddington}}'' having raised him since his parents died, before the Browns take on the role.
* In ''SecondHandLions'', young Walter ends up getting raised by his two great uncles, Hub and Garth.
* Lilli in ''Film/SnowWhiteATaleofTerror'' was raised by a nurse, who was an acceptable substitute for her mother. Lilli holds Nannau's death against her stepmother.
* Maria Kutschera from ''Film/TheSoundOfMusic'' in became one of these towards the von Trapp children and officially became their mother once she married their father.
* Uncle Ben is this to Peter Parker in the [[Film/SpiderManTrilogy Spider-man films]].
* In ''Film/ThePhantomMenace'', Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jin fills this role in the life of young Anakin Skywalker. [[spoiler:Then Qui-Gon dies at the end, leaving Obi-Wan Kenobi to step in as a substitute Parental Substitute. Later, Obi-Wan and Anakin become more like [[HeterosexualLifePartners bro]][[HoYay thers]].]] Though, it's worth noting that perhaps in a strange, twisted way, Watto was also almost akin to a father-figure to Anakin. Almost.
* In ''Film/TheSwordOfDoom'', Shichibei tries to be this to Omatsu after Ryunosuke cuts down her first Substitute, her pilgrim grandfather. His efforts are hindered somewhat though by the fact that Shichibei's job is that of a wide-traveling thief.
* In ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay'', the T-800 Terminator serves as a father-figure for John Connor. Lampshaded when Sarah Conner notes that the killing machine is a better father for John than any of her old "boyfriends".
* Agammenon in ''Film/TimeBandits''. Unlike Kevin's slothful, stupid, greedy parents, he watches out for Kevin and instructs him.
* In ''Film/TRONLegacy'', Alan took over as father figure to Sam after Kevin disappears. In one of the clips in the news montage on Kevin's disappearance, it looks like he's about to go PapaWolf on some hounding reporters harassing young Sam.
* ''Film/XMen'':
** Charles Xavier plays this role to all of the X-Men, but it's most notable in ''Film/XMenFirstClass'' with a young Hank and the teenaged Alex and Sean, all of whom remain loyal to him before and after Cuba. [[spoiler: The mere mention of Sean's death in ''Film/XMenDaysOfFuturePast'' makes Charles visibly distraught, which is in direct contrast to all of the other names that Erik throws at him.]]
*** There is one exception. In ''Film/XMenDaysOfFuturePast'', Charles claims he raised Raven, and Erik corrects him--they ''grew up'' together. He is not her father. [[spoiler:This ties into the end of the film, when he stops trying to control her and lets her make her own choice]].
** Wolverine to Rogue.
** Ichirō Yashida for Mariko in ''Film/TheWolverine'', as Shingen, her actual parent, is [[AbusiveParents not a nice man]].
* This is what King Stefan ''intended'' the fairies to be for his daughter in ''Film/{{Maleficent}}''. Unfortunately, the three of them were terrible caretakers. So who were the ones who actually fed, played with, and watched over Aurora? [[AntiVillain Maleficent]] and [[ServileSnarker Diaval]]. Yes, the good guys were ''so incompetent, the villains had to take care of the baby for them''. [[spoiler:This actually ends up being plot-important, as their paternal love for Aurora is what [[LoveRedeems starts their]] HeelFaceTurn and allows Maleficent to break the curse.]]
* Even {{Kaiju}} can be subject to this. Godzilla Junior from the 1990s series was raised by humans for a time in the institute [[Film/GodzillaVsMechagodzillaII he hatched]] at, seeing biologist Azusa Gozo as his mother because [[{{Imprinting}} she was the first thing he saw when he hatched]]. This turned him into a GentleGiant towards humans when he got older.

* ''Literature/APrayerForOwenMeany'': Owen's real parents don't take much interest in Owen, so Johnny's mother pretty much takes care of him. [[spoiler: This makes her accidental death at Owen's hands all the more heart breaking.]]
* In ''ALittlePrincess'', Sara becomes this to Lottie.
* Dr. Montgomery in ''Literature/ASeriesOfUnfortunateEvents'' is a good example. In ''The Penultimate Peril'', volunteers Kit Snicket and Dewey Denouement answer ''some'' of the Baudelaires' questions and the latter offers to become their guardian. All three of them die.
* [[GenreDeconstruction Twisted like most things]] in ASongOfIceAndFire. Sansa Stark is forced to masquerade as [[MagnificentBastard Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish's]] bastard daughter for the sake of her own survival, which would be okay except Littlefinger can't seem to work out if he views Sansa as a daughter or as a [[ReplacementGoldfish younger, more beautiful version]] of the woman he'd loved obsessively since childhood.
** As part of the same scenario, Sansa's cousin Lord Robert Arryn comes to view her as something between a parental substitute (for his late mother Lysa, who was murdered by Littlefinger after marrying her) and a CoolBigSis (since Robert believes that "Alayne" is his stepsister).
* In ''Literature/TheBabySittersClub'', Claudia's grandmother Mimi was this to both Mary Anne (whose mother died when she was very young) and to Claudia (whose parents are alive but don't really "get" her).
* [[Literature/TheBrothersKaramazov Fyodor Karamazov]] cares little for any of his three sons; young Dimitri goes half-naked and unfed until [[OldRetainer Grigory]] steps in and virtually raises him himself; Ivan and Alexei are adopted by their uncle Miusov.
* After her parents go to war in ''Literature/DirgeForPresterJohn'', Sefelet is cared for by Vyala, her mother's friend's mother. They appear to bond more than Sefalet did to her real parents.
* In Creator/JimButcher's ''Literature/DresdenFiles'', this features twice in the orphaned Harry's BackStory. Justin exploited his need for one. Afterward, Ebneazer did a much better job of it; he is still protective of Harry and deploys such tropes as SoProudOfYou.
* In ''Literature/FireAndHemlock'', Pollys grandmother is her parent substitute, as her own parents are in an unhappy marriage and fight a lot.[[spoiler: They divorce later in the novel]] There is also Mr. Lynn and to a lesser extent his friends, who treat Polly more like a friend, but still qualify, as they readily step in when Polly's actual parents neglect her and her grandma is not nearby.
* In Creator/GeneStrattonPorter's ''Literature/{{Freckles}}'', Freckles acquires two: McLean is a father figure, and Mrs. Duncan as a mother figure who assures him that she loves him like a son and weeps over how desperately he needs the affection.
* In Creator/WilliamAlexander's ''Literature/GoblinSecrets'', the children were taken in by Graba.
* In the ''Literature/{{Goosebumps}}'' book ''A Night in Terror Tower'', [[spoiler:Morgred the sorceror is set to fill this role for Edward and Susannah when they finally escape into the future to live new lifes away from their evil uncle and the High Executioner. As the late, rightful King's court mage, he promised to protect them from harm.]]
* ''Literature/HarryPotter'' is crawling with Parental Substitutes. Nearly every adult who has any interaction with Harry is a Parental Substitute, especially Albus Dumbledore, Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, Hagrid (maybe more of an uncle figure), Minerva [=McGonagall=] and Arthur & Molly Weasley. And because this is ''Harry Potter'', things don't [[DeathByNewberyMedal end well for all but the last four]].
** Harry's friends are not immune either. Neville Longbottom is raised by his grandmother due to his parents having been tortured to madness by Death Eaters. Harry himself also becomes one to Teddy Lupin. Although he seems to be living with his grandmother, he often visits the Potter-family.
*** More stories of this are told for reoccurring background characters. Susan Bones seems to have been raised by her aunt as nearly her entire family were killed by Death Eaters
* In JohnCWright's ''Literature/TheHermeticMillennia'', Soorm recounts how Asvid became for him the only father he had ever known, and taught him filial piety. [[spoiler:He's lying.]]
* Bush towards the decade-younger Hornblower in the ''Literature/HoratioHornblower'' books, evolved out of a BigBrotherInstinct from early in their careers; he's constantly worrying that his captain isn't getting enough rest or credit or human contact and Hornblower compares him to a mother hen at one point. Not that Bush quite realizes this since he's [[BritishStuffiness Britishly]] out-of-touch with his own emotions.
* Celia and Tam Lin in ''Literature/HouseOfTheScorpion'' who are Matt's caretaker and bodyguard respectively, are pretty much his Parental Substitutes, since being a clone, he has no parents, unless you count his original's parents, which would be technically, but they have been dead for over a century.
* Jim could be seen as this to HuckleberryFinn, whose own father is a violent and uncaring drunk.
* Haymitch develops this kind of relationship with Katniss and Peeta in ''Literature/TheHungerGames''.
* John Cleaver's therapist in ''Literature/IAmNotASerialKiller'' acts like a father figure for John.
* In AndreNorton's ''Literature/IceCrown'', the princess was raised by her grandfather. Roane appears to be in her uncle's charge, though he seems more taken with the notion of another pair of hands with less regulation, since she's related.
* In ''Literature/TheInfernalDevices'', Charlotte raised Will, Jem, and Jessie since they came to the institute. Will says that she would have been called a governess had she not been so intelligent and if she didn't have the ability to chop one into pieces.
* ''Literature/JeevesAndWooster'': Since the issue of ManChild Bertie Wooster having parents is never dwelt on, there are plenty of implications that he regards ''[[TheJeeves Jeeves]]'' as something of a father figure. Jeeves, for his part, is often noted to cast a "paternal" eye on Bertie's antics.
* Literature/SherlockHolmes and Watson could see ''each other'' as this, since they hardly mention their family or whatever, and [[AloofBigBrother Mycroft]] hardly looks out for Sherlock. Plus, Watson doesn't have anyone else to look out for him if he needs it (and "[[Heartwarming/SherlockHolmes The Three Garridebs]])" ''shows'' that of ALL people, a detective is the only person [[UndyingLoyalty willing to do ANYTHING (if necessary) for his friend's protection.]]
* In Creator/EdgarRiceBurroughs's ''[[JohnCarterOfMars The Chessman Of Mars]]'', U-Thor received a slave woman from his jeddak; he freed and married her, and regards the son she bore the jeddak, A-Kor, as like a son to him. When the jeddak, a RoyalBrat, has A-Kor imprisoned out of fear and envy, U-Thor demands an accounting.
-->''I have made of her a free woman, and I have married her and made her thus a princess of Manatos. Her son is my son, O-Tar, and though thou be my jeddak, I say to you that for any harm that befalls A-Kor you shall answer to U-Thor of Manatos.''
** Also, in the earlier books ''Gods of Mars'' and ''Warlord of Mars'' Tars Tarkas, Tardos Mors, and Mors Kajak are implied to have served this role for John Carter's son, Carthoris, after Carter was returned to Earth.
* Liz Pennykettle for David Rain in [[Literature/{{Dragons}} The Last Dragon Chronicles]]. Later, it turns out that [[spoiler:she actually is his mother in an parallel universe.]] She even acts as a mother to Zanna at times.
* In The Lightbringer Series Dazen, masquerading as his brother Gavin, takes on the role of father to Kip, who is actually his nephew.
* Creator/JRRTolkien's ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'' and ''Literature/TheSilmarillion'' feature many parental substitutes: Bilbo (for Frodo), Théoden (for Éomer, Éowyn and arguably Merry), Elrond (for Aragorn), Maglor (for Elrond and Elros), Annael (for Tuor), Thingol (for Túrin) etc. Maglor's fostering of Elrond and Elros is perhaps especially notable in that Maglor had been (twice, reluctantly) involved in the slaughter of the boys' family before that, and that he had contributed to their mother's attempted suicide...
* In ''Literature/LoyalEnemies'', Rest spent most of his childhood as a poor kid whom nobody wanted to care about, constantly kicked out of every apprenticeship he tried. Then Veres ({{Badass}} monster hunter MagicKnight) came, said the kid has a magic gift and took him on as his student. At the end of the book another wizard mistakes them for father and son. Rest corrects him, but states that he'd be proud to be Veres' child and he regards the wizard as a substitute parent.
* In ''{{Literature/Malevil}}'', the main character Emmanuel is adopted by his uncle Samuel after he runs away from home. Samuel is far more of a father to Emmanuel then his cowardly, hen-pecked brother Simon ever was.
* In Teresa Frohock's ''MiserereAnAutumnTale'', Lindsey contrasts Lucian's pride in her to her own father.
* In ''Literature/TheMortalInstruments'', Luke helped raise Clary along with Jocelyn. By ''City of Heavenly Fire'', they're referred to as father and daughter more often than not by themselves and others. In a way, he was sort of a father figure to Simon, too, as the latter's father died when he was younger.
* In Creator/SeananMcGuire's OctoberDaye novel ''Late Eclipses'', Toby reflects on how Sylvester has been this to her, despite his failings.
* In Creator/IanFleming's "[[Literature/OctopussyAndTheLivingDaylights Octopussy]]", Literature/JamesBond is sent to take a retired officer to justice. The man, working intelligence at the end of WWII, smuggled a cache of Nazi gold home and killed the mountaineer who had led him up to where it was hidden. It's business for Bond, but it's also [[ItsPersonal personal,]] as he'd been a friend to the dead man, who had taught him to ski as a teen before the war, and was "something of a father to me at a time that I happened to need one."
* George serves as this to Lennie in ''Literature/OfMiceAndMen''
* Halt from ''RangersApprentice'' is a father-figure to both Will and Horace. It comes up several times in the books that Will and Halt think of each other as father and son. Similarly, Pauline thinks of Alyss as a daughter.
* ''Literature/{{RCN}}'': Given Cordel Leary's frequent absences from the Leary household due to his political activities, Hogg serves as a substitute father for Daniel, teaching him what it means to be a man.
* Oliver to Lionel in Creator/RafaelSabatini's ''Literature/TheSeaHawk''.
* ''Literature/SeptimusHeap'': Marcia Overstrand is this to Septimus, according to WordOfGod.
* Mrs. Alowo becomes this to her orphaned students in ''Literature/SomeoneElsesWar''.
* Running a galactic government and occasionally saving it alongside one's scoundrel husband leaves little time for parenting, as [[Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse the children of Han Solo and Princess Leia]] learn. Much of their parenting is done by Leia's longtime friend and aide Winter Celchu.
** C-3PO, in a pinch, makes a surprisingly effective babysitter.
* Jaxon is the closest to a father that Corie and Elisandra have in ''Literature/SummersAtCastleAuburn'', and he tells them all the time how proud their father would be.
* Vikus from ''Literature/TheUnderlandChronicles'' is the closest thing to a parent Luxa has.
* ''Literature/VampireAcademy'':
** Victor Dashkov to Lissa and a bit to Rose, originally. He acts as a parent figure to both, offers advise and kind words, organizes shopping trips, and buys Rose gifts unavailable to her.
** Tasha Ozera is the mother figure to Christian. She raised him herself once his parents were killed. He treats her like his mother and is uncomfortable when her love life is discussed.
* In ''Literature/TheWitchesOfKarres'', Captain Pausert fills this roll for Goth and The Leewit while they are sailing with him.
* In ''Literature/WutheringHeights'', Nellie Dean serves as a parent to the second generation. As both children lost their mothers practically in childbirth, Nellie is the only mother either has ever known.
* TamoraPierce: What with her penchant for [[ParentalAbandonment killing off/extremely distant parents]], it only makes sense that...
** Alanna of ''Literature/SongOfTheLioness'' first has OldRetainer Coram, who reminds her that he changed her diapers. As a page, she has Myles of Olau, who is ''such'' a good replacement father that he eventually adopts her.
** ''Literature/TheImmortals''' Daine is "mothered" by three different women--Queen Thayet, K'mir warrior Buri, and horse trainer Onua.
** Kel of ''Literature/ProtectorOfTheSmall'' actually has living GoodParents, but obviously they're not around while she's training for knighthood and they're ambassading. Lord Raoul, her knight-master, essentially pulls her through the crappy, 15-18 years. And Kel herself becomes a substitute parent to Tobe when she basically adopts him by [[IndenturedServitude buying his indenture]] from an abusive master.
** The four main characters in the ''Literature/CircleOfMagic'' series are raised by two women who, after a time, they refer to as their 'foster mothers.'
* In the ''Literature/AgeOfFire'' series, each of the three main protagonists gets one at some point or another after their parents are killed and they're scattered as hatchlings: [=AuRon=] had [=NooMoahk=] (the elder dragon who served as his mentor during his last drakehood years), Wistala had Rainfall (the elf who raised her most of her life), and [=RuGaard=] had [=FeHazathant=] (who took pity on him and adopted him into the Lavadome's Imperial Line when he arrived), respectively.
** [=AuRon=] himself was in turn one to Heiba, the orphaned human girl he was tasked with protecting until he could get her back to her own kind, which took long enough that they ended up bonding closely.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Given how she was constantly shuffled between foster homes in her youth, Agent Coulson is the closest (and longest lasting) thing to a father figure that Skye of ''Series/AgentsOfSHIELD'' has ever had. It gets lampshaded in an early episode when Skye refers to an argument between Coulson and May as "Mom and Dad fighting". Coulson outright confirms this status in an episode where Skye is critically injured and tells the doctor who wants to summon her family so they can say their goodbyes that the team is Skye's family.
** This is further enhanced in Season 2, when Skye's ''actual'' father The Doctor (aka [[spoiler: Cal Zorbo/Mr. Hyde]]) shows up. While he desperately tries to connect with her, she rightfully calls him out as a monster (which he [[SelfDeprecation regretfully admits to]]), and clings even closer to Coulson as a result. To say that this [[BerserkButton pisses the Doctor off]] is [[UnstoppableRage an understatement]].
* In ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'', ManChild Sheldon often views Penny as a substitute for his mother (who is alive, just lives away from him); he wants her to take care of him when he's sick, or sing him a lullaby. This is especially emphasized in the episode "The Guitarist Amplification", when Sheldon runs away to the comic book store, because he can't bear Leonard and Penny fighting, and Penny makes it up to him by buying him a robot and a comic book.
** Leonard takes on a fatherly role at times: taking care of his transportation needs, shopping for food and clothing, making sure he goes to bed on time and is often the one he goes to for advice on relationship matters. When he and Penny were dating they served as surrogate parents, when they broke up Sheldon was like a child in a divorce. That led to a lot of DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything dialogue as Leonard and Penny renew their friendship for Sheldon's sake.
** Sheldon's mother tends to be this for Leonard; for all that she tends to be TheFundamentalist and is [[BookDumb not particularly well-educated]], she is nonetheless a [[CloserToEarth much more loving and sympathetic figure]] than Leonard's own mother, who treats Leonard as an errant test subject. Likewise, Sheldon sees Leonard's mother this way, as the two of them have much more in common with each other than with Leonard.
* Sweets from ''Series/{{Bones}}'' was adopted by an elderly couple, but both died before he began working with Bones and Booth. After Season 4, he begins to see Booth as a father figure and Bones as something like a sister.
* ''Series/BreakingBad'' has one of the darkest examples possible, to the point of possibly being a subversion. Due to his rocky relationship with his parents, [[AntiVillain Jesse Pinkman]] constantly seeks the approval of his former high school chemistry teacher and current partner in the meth business, [[VillainProtagonist Walter White]]. Walter does truly care for Jesse, as he always goes out of his way to protect him, but mixes this care with horrible psychological abuse, emotional blackmail, and manipulation.
* Capt. Holt is this to Jake in ''Series/BrooklynNineNine''. There's even one ColdOpening in which Jake calls Holt "dad" by accident, much to the amusement of the entire precinct.
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'':
** Buffy's father has little contact with her, even after her mother dies, but Giles serves as a surrogate father. In "Helpless", another character describes Giles as having "a father's love" for Buffy. Especially noticeable when a spell causes Buffy to decide to get married and she ask Giles to give her away. In the comics, Giles does for Faith what he did for Buffy.
** Willow and Xander are similar, as well. Willow's parents are away for months at a time and have virtually abandoned her, rarely seeing her at all. Xander's parents are drunk and too busy yelling at each other to notice him most of the time. Giles often serves as a surrogate father to them both. It makes Giles' somewhat dismissive and snippy treatment of Xander in early seasons kind of upsetting--for instance, in a season 3 episode, he is angry at Xander for sleeping during "Oz-watch", but later seems to find it almost endearing when Buffy does the same.
** The Mayor takes a similar role for Faith after her FaceHeelTurn.
** Maggie Walsh was a surrogate mother to Riley and Adam; the latter even refers to her as "mother".
* Gideon to Reid in ''Series/CriminalMinds''. [[spoiler:So when Gideon quits, Reid experiences the second loss of a father in his life]].
* Gil Grissom to Warrick Brown on ''Series/{{CSI}}''. Warrick talks a lot about it in the video found after his death. "If I could have chosen my father, I would have chosen Gil Grissom" or something close to that.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'': Ace's father is never mentioned, and she has a bad relationship with her mother, so the Doctor ends up becoming a father figure to her.
** Various incarnations of the Doctor could be considered a Mad Uncle substitute for a lot of his companions. Even some of the most cynical, like Jack Harkness, want desperately to impress him and live up to his idea of them.
* ''Series/FallingSkies'': [[NotSoStoic Weaver]] [[LikeASonToMe to]] [[ChildSoldier Jimmy]]. While its evidenced throughout the first seasons, from things like Weaver comforting him when he was nearly killed by a Skitter to defending his various screw ups, it really shows when [[spoiler: Jimmy [[AnyoneCanDie dies]] in the third episode of the second season and Weaver bonds with Ben, who blames himself for his death due to being there, with the two talking about what Jimmy would have wanted and sharing happy memories about him]].
** Pope also offered to do the same with Tom's kids as incentive to get Tom to leave, but as [[AxeCrazy it]] [[JerkAss is]] [[HeWhoFightsMonsters Pope]], [[TheSociopath afterall]], its not wise to take this as truth.
* On ''Series/FridayNightLights'', Matt Sarecen sees Coach Taylor as this. Matt has a father, but he's a much better soldier than parent.
* ''Series/FullHouse'' is somewhat based in this trope. Uncle Jesse and Joey move in to help Danny raise his daughters after the [[MissingMom mom dies in a car accident]], thus becoming additional father figures in the girls' lives. Later, Jesse gets married and Aunt Becky takes on the role of mom substitute.
* ''Series/FamilyMatters'': Steve Urkel's parents, in addition to being TheGhost, are abusive, and Steve regularly mentions how much open disdain they show for him. This is part of the reason he always goes over to the Winslow house. Carl Winslow is more of a father to Steve than Steve's father is, even if Carl doesn't usually want him around.
* ''Literature/GossipGirl'': Dorota is more of a mother to Blair than Eleanor Waldorf is. Lily tries to be this for Chuck, but she's barely a parent to her biological children, so... A good moment that demonstrates this trope is when she told [[spoiler:Bart Bass, back from the dead]], "Charles is mine, too".
** Lampshaded in season three:
--->'''Cyrus:''' Dorota is family. She practically ''raised'' Blair. ''[death glare from Eleanor]''
* On ''Series/{{Leverage}}'', [[GentlemanThief Archie]] was this to [[ClassyCatBurglar Parker]] as a teenager, even calling himself her father. [[TeamDad Nate]] and [[TeamMom Sophie]] also have elements of this towards both Parker and Hardison.
* Gaius for Merlin on ''Series/{{Merlin}}''. He did meet his real father briefly, but Balinor died before the ep was over. And his mom is still in Ealdor.
* ''Series/{{NCIS}}'': Gibbs is pretty explicitly this to Ziva:
** During the episode "Dead Air", Tony and [=McGee=] have been teasing her about not knowing much about baseball. At the end of the episode, this exchange ensues:
--->'''[=McGee=]:''' Well, look at this! She ''do'' know a little somethin' 'bout baseball, huh?
--->'''Ziva:''' Yeah. My father taught me.
--->'''Gibbs:''' ''[face-splitting grin]''
** Gibbs expresses his side at the end of the episode "Safe Harbor", after giving her some fatherly advice.
--->'''Ziva:''' Are you lonely, Gibbs?
--->'''Gibbs:''' You're never lonely when you have kids. ''[kisses her on the forehead]'' Goodnight, kid.
*** There's some FridgeBrilliance in the relationship if you know that Ziva is the age Gibbs' daughter would have been if she hadn't been killed.
** To a lesser extent, Gibbs to Tony. Tony does care for his real father (even after finding out he was/is a con artist) but doesn't really need his approval. Disappointing Gibbs is something that bothers him immensely, and when Gibbs gives him a SoProudOfYou comment, you can see Tony practically swell.
* ''Series/OnceUponATime'': [[Literature/RedRidingHood Red]] was obviously [[RaisedByGrandparents raised by her grandmother]], but Granny is also implied to be a parental substitute for Literature/{{Snow White|and the Seven Dwarfs}}.
** Hook evolves into one for Henry, doing things like taking him sailing while Emma's out investigating the going-ons in town, and apparently Henry prefers hanging out with Hook than his "boring" grandparents. The symbolism is even clearer when you take into account [[UnresolvedSexualTension Hook and Emma having feelings for each other]].
** Hook was also this for [[spoiler:Henry's actual father, Baelfire.]] [[TakeOurWordForIt It's a long story]].
* ''Series/RaisingHope'': Sabrina takes on the role of Hope's mother (who's a notorious serial killer) to the point of Hope calling Sabrina "mommy".
* ''Series/TheSarahConnorChronicles'' featured several father figures for John Connor, including Charlie Dixon and Derek Reese. (Of course, since Derek is John's uncle, his falling into such a role is kind of natural.)
* In ''Series/TheSarahJaneAdventures'', it is revealed that Sarah Jane's parents died when she was only three months old, and she was raised by her Aunt Lavinia. Exactly how much of a mother figure Lavinia was is somewhat debatable, as Sarah Jane once described her as "always so busy, never in one place long enough to lick a stamp". It can be argued, of course, that that doesn't necessarily mean that she was uncaring or uninvolved. In fact, the pilot for the failed spin-off series ''K9 & Company'' gives us a small glimpse into their relationship, and they do generally seem to care about one another (and has Lavinia use [[NotSoDifferent exactly that phrase to describe Sarah Jane]]).
** There's no denying that Maria and her mother love each other dearly, but Chrissie is, to put it bluntly, a massive flake. Sarah Jane winds up picking up the slack and becomes the mother-figure Maria needs.
* Series 3 makes it rather obvious that Mycroft was this to the [[InsufferableGenius titular character]] of ''Series/{{Sherlock}}'', since their actual parents were very well-meaning but out of their depth with two prodigy children. Interestingly for this trope, it's also implied that Mycroft wasn't necessarily a particularly ''good'' parental substitute. Most likely at least partially because [[AloofBigBrother Mycroft considers himself to be smarter than Sherlock, and Sherlock considers Mycroft to be smarter than him]].
** The series itself plays it straight with Mrs. Hudson, to the point of her [[TeamMom being treated like a mom]]. Sherlock and John ''definitely'' see her as this. Do not mess with her.
** Also, surprisingly, John could possibly count as one for Sherlock, since he ''has'' [[GoodIsNotSoft killed TWO VILLAINS in cold blood and threatened death on one of them when said knucklehead grabs him in a headlock in an attempt to strangle him or snap his neck]]. He also ''taught'' Sherlock about friendship, and his [[MoralityPet presence humanizes Sherlock]] which, in turn [[UndyingLoyalty prompts Sherlock to fake his on death for him.]]
** Also, despite the fact Sherlock's ''younger'' than his friend, he could be seen as one for John, since it's most likely obvious his parents died, though it's possible they were alive in his birth and all that. [[FridgeBrilliance Sherlock's confidence could've rubbed off on John.]]
** Plus, [[CoolBigSis Mary]] could be seen as this (in a way) since she seems to understand Sherlock as much as [[LivingEmotionalCrutch his best friend]] does. [[BewaretheNiceOnes And she's the one who shot Sherlock.]] Basically? Don't screw around ''with an assassin from the CIA.'' You WILL get your rear end kicked if you do. Oh, and, despite the fact that John is a quiet, nice, guy you REALLY don't want to provoke him into messing you up if you mess with his friend. [[BadassBookworm And he's very capable of doing it.]]
* ''Series/StargateSG1'': Samantha Carter acts as a mother-figure for Cassandra. Even after Dr. Fraisier adopts Cassandra, the girl retains a strong attachment to Sam. O'Niell also acts as a second father-figure for Skaara (though it might be more fair to say that Skaara acts as a surrogate son for O'Neill, whose [[spoiler:son accidentally killed himself with O'Neill's gun]].
* On ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'', little Naomi Wildman's father is 70,000 light years away when she is born, so several of the male crewmembers try to fill a paternal role in her life, usually her godfather Neelix.
** Captain Janeway serves as a positive parent to young Kes, rehumaned Seven of Nine, B'Elanna Torres (whose father abandoned her), Tom Paris (ditto, just not physically), and Harry Kim (made even more pronounced in "Endgame").
*** Lampshaded in "Barge of the Dead" (where B'Elanna's mother appears in a vision wearing a Starfleet captain's uniform) and "Dark Frontier", where Janeway "tucks Seven into bed" (plugs her into her Borg alcove) after she [[strike:wins the custody battle]] rescues Seven from the Borg Queen.
** Seven of Nine later became this to four [[CreepyChild creepy-ass Borg children]] they rescued with variable success. Their interaction was as much about Seven's continued CharacterDevelopment as the kids', if not more.
* Leroy's mother in ''Still Series/OpenAllHours'' abandoned him with his probable father Granville. Pretty much all the female customers of a certain age seem to be his mother-figures, especially Nurse Gladys.
* Since John Winchester of ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'' spent a lot of time away from his boys when they were young and [[spoiler:died at the beginning of the show's second season]], fellow hunter [[OnlySaneMan Bobby Singer]] has served as Sam and Dean's adviser, backup, and primary father figure throughout the series. Dean even says on two occasions (in season three's "Dream A Little Dream of Me" and season four's "Lazarus Rising") that Bobby's been like a father to him.
-->'''Dean:''' ''[to Bobby]'' You're about the closest thing I have to a father. ("Lazarus Rising")
** For his part, Bobby seems to see the boys as [[LikeASonToMe surrogate sons]], saying in the season three finale, "No Rest for the Wicked", that "family don't end with blood".
** [[CoolOldGuy Bobby]] seems to have been this to an extent even when the boys were kids. He is, for example, the only person who ever took Dean out to play ball, and it's shown that Dean and Sam knew him as "Uncle Bobby" when they were young. Interestingly, before Bobby's introduction at the end of season one, they had spent an unspecified amount of time estranged from one another (apparently Bobby had chased John off his property with a shotgun).
** In season six, when Sam wants to avoid [[spoiler:regaining his soul, which he fears will destroy him by bringing back memories of his time in Hell]], he is told that he can prevent this by committing a grievous sin, specifically patricide. Literal patricide is obviously out of the question, but Sam is reassured that "it needs the father's blood, but the ''father'' need not ''be'' blood", leading him to chase Bobby violently through his own house in the attempt to commit the murder. (Keep in mind that Sam [[CameBackWrong isn't himself at the time]]. He knows enough to identify Bobby as his father figure, but not enough to be horrified by the thought of killing him.) The episode also gave us the hilarious FridgeHorror line "Nobody kills me in my house but me!"
** When they find themselves caring for a baby and have to come up with a name for it impromptu, Dean decides to call it "Bobby" and Sam decides to call it "John". In an effort to not confuse the woman asking about the baby, they hastily restate that the baby's name is "Bobby John".
** Sam also sees Dean as a father figure. As stated above, John Winchester used to disappear for weeks at a time, leaving young Dean in charge of little Sam. It's no wonder Dean treats Sam like his kid sometimes, calling him "Sammy" and reminiscing fondly on the days Sam was smaller and dependent on him.
* ''Series/TeenWolf'' has this. Ms. [=McCall=] often acts like a mother to Stiles and isn't at all surprised that he has a key to her house. He even calls her Mom without realizing it after he's given a sedative and is about to fall asleep.
** She also becomes this to Isaac, and basically adopts him in season 3.
* ''Series/{{Warehouse 13}}'': Artie is, to quote Pete, "so much like [Claudia's] dad it's kinda annoying."
* President Bartlet is a parental substitute to Charlie on ''Series/TheWestWing''. Bartlet and his chief of staff Leo are both parental substitutes of sorts to Josh (even though he's an adult when his father dies).
* Peter to Neal in ''Series/WhiteCollar''. Peter is always giving Neal "shape up" lectures, but, at the same time, has affection for and protective feelings toward him, and Neal starts looking to Peter for guidance.
-->'''Neal:''' ''[to [[spoiler:his recently-returned dad]]]'' He's been more of a father to me than you ever were!
* ''Series/TheXFiles'': In the first season, mysterious informant Deep Throat is something of a father substitute for Mulder even though Mulder's father is still alive at this point.
* In ''Series/TheFreshPrinceOfBelAir'', Uncle Phil is a better father figure to Will than Will's own deadbeat dad ever was. The only episode when Will's dad makes an appearance cements this. At the end of the series, Will even admits that he looked up to Phil and wanted to follow his example.
* In ''Series/TheVampireDiaries'', we see Damon being a fatherly substitute to Jeremy, even taking guardianship over him while Jeremy's sister Elena is at college.
* In ''Series/{{LOST}}'', after [[spoiler:Claire disappears and fails to escape the island with them]], Kate ends up adopting her son.
* In ''Series/{{Gotham}}'', Alfred Pennyworth and Jim Gordon share this role for the young Bruce Wayne.
* At the end of the ''Series/ImInTheBand'' episode "Lord of the Weasels", Derek Jupiter, the lead singer of Iron Weasel, is considered to be a father figure to the band's teen guitarist, Tripp Campbell.

* In Greek myth, the philandering Zeus fathered a number of sons, none of which he actually helped raise. Some of them were lucky enough to find substitute father figures who took care of them: Heracles was raised by Amphitryon, his mother's mortal husband, while Perseus was raised by the fisherman Dictys, who took his mother Danae in when she was abandoned by her own father, and Dionysius was raised by the mortal woman Ino and her husband, who Zeus gave to them to take care of so his jealous wife Hera wouldn't find out about his affair.
** Zeus himself was raised on a secluded island by nymphs, a goat, and his grandmother Gaia. He liked the goat best--enough to make it the constellation Capricorn after its death.
* In NorseMythology, Odin sometimes comes off as this to Loki in some stories (most likely the reason behind Loki becoming his adopted son in the MarvelComics [[TheMightyThor version]]). While Odin often threatened him allowed others to punish Loki for his mischief, the two shared a blood pact which made Odin always treat him as an extension of himself, basically making Loki his child. Kinda sad that he then had to bind him to a boulder as punishment for making some mean comments/killing Baldr, driving Loki insane and turning him against the Aesir, leading to Ragnarok.

* In ''[[Pinball/WHODunnit WHO dunnit]]'', Trixie sees her father's business partner, Tony, as a substitute dad after her real father disappears in an auto accident.

* Pierce filled this role for troubled teenager Kate Bishop in ''Roleplay/DinoAttackRPG'', at least until [[spoiler:it turned out he actually ''was'' her father]].
** Over the years, [[TheBartender Bartholomew Enderson]] became a father figure to Silencia Venomosa, or at least the closest she had to a father since the murder of her parents.
** Greybeard inadvertently became a ''Grand''parental Substitute to Mary Rose, especially because she was too young to realize that he is not actually her grandfather.

* ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods'': Cinderella becomes one for Little Red Riding Hood and probably for Jack too.
* In ''Theatre/{{Philoctetes}}'', Neoptolemus is mostly a good guy who is lacking in guidance. While Odysseus first takes on this role for him, Philoctetes becomes a more sincere parental figure to him by the end.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/DisgaeaHourOfDarkness'', the late King Krichevskoy acted as one to the orphan Etna, taking pity and raising her as a daughter.
* ''{{VideoGame/Dishonored}}'''s Corvo Attano seems to be this to Emily Kaldwin. [[spoiler:Though there are some hints, and it is a popular fan theory, that he is her actual father]].
* In ''VideoGame/FantasyLife'', the player's sweet landlady Pam is quite motherly towards him/her. She encourages the player when (s)he is about to start his/her new job, sometimes gives him/her candy and worries when (s)he starts doing things that may be dangerous. Story chapters always end with the player and the ExpositionFairy telling her about their adventure. She also plays that role towards Yuelia, the mysterious girl who has taken to spend nights staring at stars from her roof and is implied to have lost her mother when she was young.
* Terry Bogard from ''VideoGame/FatalFury'' is this towards Geese's son Rock after he adopts him. To Rock, he's is a better father than his real one could have ever hoped to be. [[spoiler:This case is especially complicated because Terry taking Rock in is a consequence of ''Geese's ThanatosGambit''--he chose to let himself die when Terry went SavetheVillain on him, specifically to saddle him with the grief of having orphaned an innocent boy, ''like Geese himself did to him and Andy'', and then make sure Terry would adopt Rock to atone]].
* Auron to Tidus in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'''s backstory, and to a lesser extent during the game itself.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII'': Lightning is this for Hope. Although it could be seen as a CoolBigSis relationship, they only act like this after Hope's mother's death, and she spends much of the story being his ResentfulGuardian. Also inverted. While Lightning clearly becomes a stand-in for Hope's [[MissingMom late mother, Nora]], Hope is just as much a stand-in for Lightning's younger sister, Serah, [[PromotedToParent who Lightning raised]].
* Happens frequently in any ''Franchise/FireEmblem'' game:
** ''FireEmblemJugdral'': In the Seisen game Ayra takes her nephew Shanan out of Isaach on request of her older brother Crown Prince Mariccle, [[spoiler:before their kingdom gets destroyed in the war]]. Later, Adean and Oifaye take Shanan in as well as many other children, including Oifaye's infant cousin Seliph and Adean's own children Lana and Lester. [[spoiler:Travant]] is a darker example, as [[spoiler:he ''killed'' Altena's parents before taking her in as his war spoil]]; at the same time, his retainer Hannibal takes care of a young boy named Corple (or his {{expy}} Sharlow) [[spoiler:in case Corple's mother Sylvia died childless]].
** In ''Thracia 776'', Evayle [[spoiler:aka the amnesiac Briggid]] is this to Leif, Nanna, and Mareeta; Leif also has a father figure in Finn, who [[spoiler:was a retainer to Leif and Altena's dead parents (and is Nanna's father)]]; additionally, [[spoiler:Nanna's mother Raquesis is said to have been a mother figure to Leif for a while, before disappearing]]. Finn's old friend Selphina is said to have become this in the ending, taking care of war orphans; this would get her called "Mother of Thracia" after her death.
** ''VideoGame/FireEmblemElibe'': Douglas is this to the dancer Lalam. Lugh and Chad also mention a kindhearted priest who raised them until he died in the hand of Bernese troops [[spoiler:and who may or may not have been Lucius]]. Twenty years earlier, during ''Blazing Sword'', Pent and Louise are parental figures for the magician Erk, whose real parents are never mentioned, while his potential LoveInterest Priscilla was raised by House Caerleon [[spoiler: after her parents, the leads of House Cornwell, were falsely accused of corruption and could not clear their names, so [[DriventoSuicide they went the]] "BetterToDieThanBeKilled" way]].
** ''VideoGame/FireEmblemTheSacredStones'': Pontifex Mansel from Rausten raises his niece L'Arachel as his heiress and daughter figure, after the death of her parents.
** ''[[VideoGame/FireEmblemTellius Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn]]'' also provides [[spoiler:Micaiah and Sothe, at least at the beginning of their relationship. In a variation, [[RelationshipUpgrade you can get them hitched]] if you want to]].
** In ''FireEmblemAwakening'', Khan Basilio is this to Olivia, whom he adopted when she was a pre-teen and he saved her from a nobleman [[IHaveyouNowMyPretty who wanted to force him be his mistress]]. [[spoiler:This might also be his relationship to Lon'qu, who is stated to be a former StreetUrchin]].
* In the ''VideoGame/{{Halo}}'' ExpandedUniverse, Doctor Catherine Halsey acts as a mother to all the Spartan-[=IIs=], probably due to guilt about tearing them away from their childhoods. Their trainer, Senior Chief Petty Officer Franklin Mendez, kind of acts as a father figure.
** As a result, Cortana admitting that she finds Master Chief (one of the aforementioned Spartans) attractive is very disconcerting for Halsey, since Cortana's personality is based on Halsey's.
* ''Franchise/JakAndDaxter'' don't have any parents to speak of (until the third game), and Samos is the one who raised them.
* Very little "parenting" in the ''Franchise/KingdomHearts'' series is done by the [[InvisibleParents unseen biological parents]] of any of the characters. [[TheObiWan Master Eraqus]] serves as a mentor and father figure to Aqua and Terra, who themselves can be seen as older siblings or parental figures in [[TheHeart Ven's]] life (the Japanese version of ''Birth by Sleep'' has Scrooge give Ven three tickets and telling him to bring "his parents" along; he gives them to Aqua and Terra). Later on in-universe, Axel's extremely over-protective behavior towards his best friend Roxas is revealed to be the result of Axel basically ''raising'' him, once again blurring the line between a big brother and father figure in Roxas's life.
* ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'' features a really bizarre version of this. [[TheHero Shepard]] recovers a "perfect" [[BloodKnight krogan]] that was created via cloning, but is essentially born in front of his/her eyes. While the creation process taught him things, and Grunt is fully grown, he obviously has no role model--krogan or otherwise--except for Shepard. After his loyalty mission, this relationship becomes clearer that Shepard is Grunt's mentor.
** Particularly noticeable in the ''Citadel DLC'' for ''3'', where Shepard has to bail Grunt out with C-Sec after Grunt and his krogan friends decided to celebrate his "birthday" with a wild night out on the Citadel. Much [[WalkingDisasterArea property damage]] and [[HilarityEnsues hilarity ensued]].
--->'''Shepard:''' Grunt, you apologize to the nice man for setting his car on fire.
--->'''Grunt:''' Fine, I'm sorry for setting your car on fire...
--->''[notices Shepard's look]''
--->'''Grunt:''' ...and I won't do it again.
*** During the TimeSkip between ''2'' and ''3'', Grunt picks up ''another'' parental substitute in the form of Urdnot Wrex, assuming Wrex survives the first game. Wrex is the king of Clan Urdnot, and is busting both his primary and secondary guts to reform krogan society, but he's literally older than the works of Shakespeare and can't last forever, so he seems to be grooming Grunt to take over for him. Of course, this means that Grunt's substitute parents are two of the biggest badasses in the ''Mass Effect'' universe; most of both those parents' friends are also huge badasses; and nearly all of those parents' love interests are huge badasses.
** Captain Anderson is this to Shepard, even calling a male Shepard 'son' at the end of [[VideoGame/MassEffect3 the third game]]. This especially notable if Shepard's parents were killed when s/he was still a teenager, or s/he never knew his/her parents.
*** He calls female Shepard "child" at that scene. Also, while Shepard can be abrasive, sarcastic or just plain rude to everyone, he/she is ''always'' respectful to Anderson.
** If you don't play Shepard as a potential love interest, the same sort of dynamic appears with Tali, during her loyalty mission, especially that hug. Mixed with CoolBigSis if Shepard is a woman.
** The right character choices in ''Mass Effect 3'' can end up with you being like this with EDI, complete with TheTalk.
* Naked Snake, in ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid 3'', answers Eva's question about his relationship with the Boss by saying that she was like his mother, [[spoiler:only making the inevitable end of the game an even bigger twist of the knife]].
* Samus Aran of the ''VideoGame/{{Metroid}}'' franchise has the Chozo elder Old Bird as her adoptive parent and mentor after her biological parents are killed by Space Pirates.
* In ''VideoGame/{{NieR}}'', Emil was essentially taken care of for thousands of years by his non-human butler Sebastian. Eventually, the eponymous protagonist becomes one to him, extending his general fatherly nature to help the boy cope with his numerous issues.
* In ''VideoGame/PokemonBlack2AndWhite2'', it's revealed that Ghetsis is this to N, although he was really just using him for his own twisted means.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Skullgirls}}'', twenty-five-year-old BadassPrincess Parasoul is this to her [[AnnoyingYoungerSibling little sister]] Umbrella, who would have been very young when both of their parents died.
** Big Band and Ileum serve as the father and mother figures, respectively, for the orphans of Lab 8.
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfTheAbyss'': By my count, Luke fon Fabre holds the current Parental Substitute record for the entire franchise, with ''five'' surrogate parental figures in total. First, there's Guy, who basically raises Luke after his traumatic kidnapping experience at age ten leaves him with complete amnesia. Then there's Van, who is Luke's mentor and combat instructor. [[spoiler:He also happens to be the one who created Luke, as he's the one who cloned him from the original Luke fon Fabre]]. [[ColonelBadass Jade]] also counts, thanks to a scene in Keterburg where Luke calls him a "teacher and mentor". [[spoiler:Since he created fomicry, he's also Luke's unofficial scientific father, in a way]]. Jade, Guy, and Van are all [[LampshadeHanging explicitly pointed to as Luke's father figures in skits]]. Then, of course, we must include [[spoiler:the Duke and Duchess fon Fabre, who are not actually Luke's parents, again, because he's a clone]].
* ''VideoGame/{{Tales Of Graces}}'': As lampshaded by the resident GenkiGirl, [[TeamMom Cheria]] and [[TeamDad Asbel]] function as this to Sophie while [[CoolOldGuy Malik]] is this to the group.
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'': Lloyd has no shortage of these. He was adopted by the dwarf Drik and sees Regal as a brother or father figure. Kratos also starts to fit this [[spoiler:until it's revealed that he's not a substitute [[LukeIAmYourFather but the real thing]]]].
* This also comes up in ''VideoGame/TalesOfVesperia'', and mainly serves to make TheReveal that [[spoiler:Raven is Schwann and has been working for [[BigBad Alexei]] the whole time]] sadder. [[spoiler:Luckily, [[HeelFaceTurn he]] gets [[RedemptionEarnsLife better]]]].
-->'''Karol:''' Damn it, I really liked you, [[spoiler:Raven]]. [[spoiler:I couldn't tell you before, but if my dad were--]]
-->'''[[spoiler:Schwann]]:''' [[spoiler:[[KickTheDog How unfortunate, "Raven" isn't here]]]].
* Sully is this for Nate in ''VideoGame/{{Uncharted}}''. He accompanies him on most of his adventures, is constantly giving him advice or berating him for his hasty decisions, and always calls him "kid". It seemed more like an {{Inter Generational Friendship}} until ''Drake's Deception'', where it was revealed that [[spoiler:Nate's father gave him up for adoption after his mother committed suicide. Years later, Sully saved Nate's life when the latter was only 15 and, seeing how lost and alone the kid was, Sully took him under his wing and raised him from then on--basically becoming his father]].
-->'''Sully:''' Kid, I've had your back for 20 years. I'm not going anywhere, obviously. I just want to make sure we're doing this for the right reasons. You've got your pride all caught up in this thing, it's making you reckless. I taught you better than that.
* Chin Gensai from ''VideoGame/TheKingOfFighters'' is this towards both Sie Kensou and Bao. Chin is actually explicitly said to be Bao's adopted father.
* Lee Everett becomes this to Clementine in ''VideoGame/TheWalkingDead'' video game. While he never gets officially PromotedToParent, several characters think Lee is Clementine's father when they first meet them, and at the end of the game, it's Lee who's going to find Clementine, no matter what. And God help anyone who [[PapaWolf tries to hurt her]]. In Season 2, [[spoiler:Kenny]] tries to fulfill this role towards Clementine, but it becomes clear that he's not nearly as cut out as Lee.
* Artemus of ''VideoGame/{{Thief}}'' was Garrett's mentor and father figure when he was still with the Keepers, and apparently still keeps tabs on him.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Xenoblade}}'', Dickson found Shulk orphaned at the age of four, and adopted him as his own.
* Terry Bogard adopts Geese Howard's child Rock in his ''VideoGame/FatalFury 3'' ending (although that specific scene doesn't take place until the ending of the sequel, ''Real Bout Fatal Fury'', where Geese actually dies). He pretty much had to, though: he (unintentionally) killed Rock's father Geese, who in turn had killed Terry and Andy's father Jeff. There's an implication that [[GenreSavvy Geese]] refused to let Terry SaveTheVillain because he ''knew'' Terry would be a better parent for Rock than he was ([[ThanatosGambit as well as saddling him with the aforementioned guilt of having caused a boy's orphanhood]]).
* In ''Franchise/SuperMarioBros'', the Magikoopa Kamek serves as Bowser's ParentalSubstitute, having raised Bowser from when he was a baby.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* Several cases take place in the ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorney'' series:
** In ''Justice For All'', it's revealed that Phoenix's mentor Mia Fey left her little sister Maya in their aunt Morgan's care when she left the village to [[spoiler:search for her and Maya's mother Misty]]. The sisters were unaware of [[spoiler:Morgan's jealousy toward Misty and her daughters]], and were ''very'' upset to find out that [[spoiler:[[BrokenPedestal their beloved aunt would try to frame Maya for murder]], so [[StageMom her own]] ChildProdigy daughter Pearlie would be the heir.]]
** In ''VisualNovel/ApolloJusticeAceAttorney'', Phoenix himself becomes one by adopting a young girl now named Trucy Wright.
** In ''[[VisualNovel/AceAttorneyInvestigationsMilesEdgeworth Investigations 2]]'', [[spoiler:Hakari Mikagami]] becomes [[spoiler:Shimon Aizawa's adoptive mother]] after the death of his mother, Ami. His father, [[spoiler:the ''real'' president of Zheng Fa]], [[DisappearedDad is already dead.]]

* [[BladeOfToshubi Toshubi]] is becoming this to Jessica.
* Given that the titular character's biological family moved to the United Kingdom in the comic's prologue ''ComingUpViolet'' one-ups this trope by having an entire substitute family for Ms. Oaks, complete with a mother, father, and two sisters.
** [[http://www.webcomicsnation.com/bdaniel/violet/series.php?view=archive&chapter=35843 But not everyone can be a momstitute]].
* In ''Webcomic/DocRat'', [[http://www.docrat.com.au/default.asp?thisItem=752 Col for Pippie]].
* In DomainTnemrot, Dae is like this for Mia, who actually has a father, he just flat out ignores her. Angel is her substitute mother, as her real one is comatose. Despite them having an easy escape from their slavery, they are staying with Mia[[note]] Who is their owner[[/note]] because they are ''literally'' the only people who care about her. Their plans even include finding a way to bring Mia with them when they do escape.
* In ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'', Mr. Verres is this for Grace when she moves in with the Verres. Previously Damien was an [[AbusiveParents Abusive Parental Substitute]] to her and before that Dr. Sciuridae took care of her because she was his ReplacementGoldfish though Grace views him as a grandfather. The only real biological parent Grace ever had to care for her was Mr. Guyur (who was killed by Damien) as the other biological parents were either already dead when she was born or non-sapient.
--> '''Grace''': [[LikeASonToMe You're like a father to me]]!
--> '''Mr. Verres''': [[http://egscomics.com/?date=2005-04-27 ...But you're my son's girlfriend.]]
--> '''Grace''': We're a strange family.
* In ''{{Endstone}}'', [[http://endstone.net/comic/issue-1-page-18/ Lord Quandal had welcomed Cole to his family as a daughter]]; it's enough that when she's about to MindRape him, [[HeelRealization Cole wonders why she is doing these terrible things]] -- [[IgnoredEpiphany for a panel]]. And even afterwards [[http://endstone.net/comic/7-17/ she keeps him with her and cares for him in his comatose state]].
* Agatha Heterodyne, the titular ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'', was raised by Adam and Lilith Clay[[note]]i.e. Punch and Judy, the Heterodyne Boys' most famous constructs[[/note]] after the supposedly tragic deaths of her parents and the disappearance of her uncle Barry.
* Antimony Carver of ''Webcomic/GunnerkriggCourt'' has ''four'' substitute fathers. First is her gym teacher, who used to date her mother. Then there's Reynardine, a fox spirit, who was in love with her mother. [[TricksterArchetype Coyote]] is more of a crazy uncle, but he is still protective of her. Oh, and her actual dad [[DisappearedDad should show up eventually]].
** Eglamore (the gym teacher) [[http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/archive_page.php?comicID=478 sometimes forgets he's not Annie's father]].
** Ysengrin has (reluctantly) begun entering that category as well, with some wonderful advice (despite his grumpy gruff [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold apparant distaste]] for the idea)
* The original 4 characters of Homestuck have several examples of this, including Dave's older brother and [[PhysicalGod Becquerel]], Jade's dog. [[spoiler: The subversion is that Dave's brother really is his genetic father through the paradox that is ectobiology, while John's father is actually his half-brother]].
** Troll society is structured so that most trolls are [[RaisedByWolves raised by wildlife]], meaning that ''all'' of them have a parental substitute, but the most famous example in-universe would be the Dolorosa, who raised the Signless when it became clear that he had no chance of being claimed by a lusus. Her adoptive son would later become a MessianicArchetype.
* In ''LastRes0rt'', the powerful Vaeo Family is made up of Vince, his daughter Cypress, and their cousins / nephews Nate and Damien, even though Vince will refer to and treat all three like his children.
* In ''Webcomic/ManlyGuysDoingManlyThings'', Commander Badass is this for Jared.
-->'''Commander:''' Hey kid, how about from now on before you put anything else in that bag you pretend y' hear your dad's voice in yer head sayin' ''"Do you really need this?"''
-->'''Jared:''' My dad never cared about me enough to give me stern fatherly advice like that.
-->'''Commander:''' Okay, look't me now, Jared. Do ya ''really'' need this? ''Really?''
* Asia Ellis from ''[[{{Webcomic/Morphe}} morphE]]'' collects these. [[http://asia-ellis-understoods.tumblr.com/post/80428559185/fun-fact-asia-collects-father-figures This official ask blog entry]] explains this and displays Malloy has become her replacement father figure while she is in captivity.
* In ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'', Elan sees Roy this way, though Roy sees him as more of an annoyance. [[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0388.html The third row down of this comic is a beautiful example.]]
* Obadai alternates between this and TricksterMentor with respect to Elysia in RumorsOfWar.
* In ''Webcomic/SomethingPositive,'' Davan initially believed he might be Rory's biological father, but a DNA test proves otherwise. The real father doesn't step up, though, so Davan becomes Rory's father figure anyway. In strip [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold he admits]] he wishes he ''was'' Rory's father. A FlashForward to 2020 has one of Rory's friends refer to Davan as "your dad".
** Faye and Fred were Monette's Parental Substitutes for several years before [[HappilyAdopted officially adopting her]].
** Rory has [[http://www.somethingpositive.net/sp05162013.shtml recently started calling Davan 'Dad,']] which he's happy with.
* In ''{{Webcomic/Zoophobia}}'', Damian's [[{{Satan}} father]] is [[ParentalNeglect never, ever around]], and leaves Damian to be taken care of by Tentadora and Styx, despite expecting him to take over his throne.
** Also Addison and his foster mother [[SnakePeople Latika]].

[[folder:Web Original]]
* In the ''LeagueOfIntergalacticCosmicChampions'' Artsy-Fartsy became the substitute mom to MysteriousWaif Quito Power.
* Mirrorfall - Ryan for Stef, starts referring to her as his daughter in the third book.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* From ''WesternAnimation/AdventureTime,'' Simon Petrikov served as this to Marceline when she was a child during the [[AfterTheEnd aftermath of the Mushroom War]]. This makes it all the more heartbreaking when [[spoiler:Simon's [[ArtifactOfDoom crown]] eventually drove him irreversibly insane and transformed him into the [[WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds Ice King]]. He still remembers her as someone that he likes, and he's still drawn to her despite her frequently moving (implied to be Marceline hiding from the Ice King because it's too painful for her to see him), but he's completely forgotten the true depths of their relationship]].
* In ''WesternAnimation/AlfredJKwak'', Henk (a mole) functions as this to Alfred (a duck) after Alfred's parents and siblings were killed in a car accident. [[DiscussedTrope Discussed]] by Dolf, who thinks Alfred is weird or even inferior for having been raised by someone not his own species.
* Zuko in ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'' finds his parental substitute in his eccentric BadassGrandpa uncle, Iroh.
** Also, shown in flashbacks, [[CoolTeacher Monk Gyatso]] for Aang.
** Toph admits that she views Katara, only a few years older than her, as a mother figure. Toph's own parents weren't particularly good. In an interesting version of this trope, Katara's older brother Sokka expresses the same emotions.
* Bruce Wayne in ''WesternAnimation/BatmanBeyond'' functions as this to Terry [=McGinnis=] [[spoiler:until the reveal that he is Terry's ''biological'' father because of a crazy governmental genetics program.]]
* On ''TheFairlyOddparents'', Cosmo and Wanda act more paternal than Timmy's [[ParentalNeglect amazingly neglectful parents]] could ever hope to.
* ''FostersHomeForImaginaryFriends'': [[CoolBigSis Frankie]] is this to Mac, whose mom is hardly ever home.
* Rather cruelly subverted (but PlayedForLaughs at the same time) in ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'': Farnsworth is the closest thing to family Fry has (he's Fry's very distant great-nephew), and Fry has a grandfather-like relationship with him. Except instead of being a [[GoodParents Good Parent]], Farnsworth is [[ParentalNeglect neglectful, abusive and uncaring]]...in a harmless sort of way.
** Also subverted in that Farnsworth seems to view the technically-several-thousand-years-old Fry as the caretaker in their relationship, and so his behavior toward Fry is like that of a bratty know-it-all teenager.
** In the episode "The Devil's Hands Are Idle Playthings", Bender acts as a parental substitute to Fry, going so far as to attend his holophone recital and yell at the teacher when she drops Fry as a student.
--> '''Bender''': Sometimes I wish your real parents were alive. ''[Hugs Fry]'' Not often though.
* Due to the closeness (geographically and otherwise) between the Goof house and the Pete house on ''WesternAnimation/GoofTroop'', there is a mutual relationship of Parental Substitutes. Peg serves as a substitute on several occasions for Max's MissingMom, while Goofy serves on a few for PJ's [[AbusiveParents Abusive Father]]. Both Peg and Goofy are portrayed as [[GoodParents competent, caring parents]] not only to their own children but also to each other's.
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic''
** Twilight Sparkle can be seen as a mother or sister figure to Spike knowing that she hatched him as part of passing the entrance exam at her school as revealed in "Cutie Mark Chronicles" and also following the events in "Owl's Well That Ends Well". According to Lauren Faust, Spike's original backstory had him raised by Celestia as well since Twilight was a filly herself at the time, but she also said this a storyboard concept and not official at the time.
** Celestia herself is an odd example; although she's officially Twilight's teacher/mentor, they tend to act more like family even before Twilight becomes her niece-in-law through her brother marrying Cadance. But Twilight's parent's aren't absent at all, and there's no indication that they have a troubled relationship with her, so it's more like Celestia becomes an additional parent to her.
** Celestia is also this for her adopted niece Cadance, who [[AllThereInTheManual was an orphan before ascending to alicorn-hood]], and fanworks tend to depict her as acting as a parent for her younger sister Luna when they were growing up since we have no idea what their parents were actually like.
** Mr. and Mrs. Cake serve as this for Pinkie Pie. She lives with them in Sugar Cube Corner and Lauren Faust said they see her as a daughter. Furthering the connection, she is a CoolBigSis and the go-to foalsitter for their blood children.
** Granny Smith acts as this for Big Mac, Applejack and Apple Bloom since their parents are absent. Big Mac and Applejack sometimes fill in as this for their little sister as well.
* Ye-Ye in ''WesternAnimation/NiHaoKaiLan'', who seems to be the only family member she lives with. Her parents never appear on the show. Kai-Lan's grandfather is always there when she needs him, and he helps both Kai-Lan and her friends when they need it.
* In ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsTheCloneWars'' Plo Koon seems to be filling in this role for Ahsoka, though Anakin Skywalker, normally a BigBrotherFigure, can be this on occasion.
* The three adult Crystal Gems in ''WesternAnimation/StevenUniverse'' serve as the titular character's guardians, mentors, and family after the [[DeathByChildbirth death of his mom]], who belonged to their team. Among them though, the general consensus is that [[ThePerfectionist Pearl]] acts the most like a mother to him and fits this trope the best. Unlike most examples, Steven's (human) dad is still alive, but isn't really in the best shape to be raising a kid.
* In ''WesternAnimation/TaleSpin'' Baloo mirrors this relationship with Kit. He also has moments of this with single mother Rebecca's daughter Molly.
* [[WesternAnimation/TeenTitans Starfire's]] "Knorfka" Galfore, who raised her from childhood. Her and Blackfire's parents are never mentioned in the series.
** Of course, the comic books are another story. Koriand'r's (and, naturally, Komand'r's and Riand'r's) parents are alive and well and living on Tamaran.
* In ''WesternAnimation/TransformersPrime'', although Cybertronian culture lacks conventional "parents" in general, [[TheMedic Ratchet]] tends to act in this way to [[KidAppealCharacter Bumblebee]]. In Season 2, it's revealed that [[spoiler: Ratchet had saved Bumblebee's life after he was critically wounded by Megatron and still blames himself for being unable to fix his vocalizer.]]
* While Brock is a PapaWolf to both of the boys in ''WesternAnimation/TheVentureBrothers'', Season 4 has made it evident that Hank look towards Brock as this. It's slightly tragic when you take into consideration that Hank is TheUnfavorite with his actual dad.
* ''WheelSquad'': Mr. Rotter is such a good father to his stepdaughter she's never bothered by her birth father [[DisappearedDad never being mentioned in the series]].
* In ''XMenEvolution'', like in the comics Professor X, Storm, and Wolverine both serve as parental figures to Scott, Jean, Kurt, Kitty, Evan, Rogue, and the New Recruits. Logan also tried to do this with X-23 (as he's the genetic base for her and as such technically her father), but she refuses to let him as she sees herself as a weapon, not a child.
* In ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice'', Bruce Wayne is very much this to Dick Grayson. Dick actually gets jealous in one episode when Bruce privately lectures Aqualad after a disastrous mission. Bruce then alleviates Dick's concerns by playing basketball with him (claiming that it's "training"). Suprisingly enough, this series ''averts'' the parental relationship between Bruce and Alfred. WordOfGod states that Alfred deliberately remained emotionally distant from Bruce in his youth because he felt it was inappropriate for a butler to act as a father to his "master". Alfred regrets that and has since become closer to both Dick and Bruce.
** Even though [[ParentalNeglect he rejected his "child" in the beginning]], Superman to Superboy does count as well. [[spoiler:By season 2 Superboy has settled for Superman playing the role of Big Brother rather than father.]]
* Both Captain Planet and Gaia serve as Parental Substitutes to [[CaptainPlanetAndThePlaneteers the Planeteers]]. Gaia herself even says, "Children. They make a mother proud" as she watches them head off onto a mission and truly loves them like her own children. Captain Planet himself is extremely good to the five kids and will not hesitate to protect them with his life. Also, considering some of their histories (Wheeler's father was an abusive alcoholic, Ma-Ti's parents were killed), it's clear that the Planeteers really do rely on both Gaia and Captain Planet as they would actual parents.
** Gi also will occasionally play TeamMom in the field, particularly towards Wheeler and Ma-Ti.
* In ''{{WesternAnimation/Grojband}}'' Trina Riffin is this to her [[AnnoyingYoungerSibling younger biological brother]], Corey Riffin, whose father is never seen yet.
* In ''GravityFalls'', it's implied that Soos sees Grunkle Stan as a role model, and possibly a parental figure. Support for the parental figure shows up when it's revealed that [[spoiler: Soos was hired on the day he realized his actual father wasn't coming back]]. For his childhood, Soos was raised by his grandmother.