- In Animorphs Redux, this basically applies to David and Melissa's dynamic, as while they are both 'the sixth Animorph', where David's similarities to the rest of the team prevented him from fitting in, Melissa's own ties to the team, such as her sharing Marco's fondness for sci-fi or Rachel's interest in gymnastics, helps her fit in with the others, reinforcing how David's own flaws prevented him fitting into the team rather than the idea that adding anyone to the team would be a bad idea.
Avatar: The Last Airbender
- In Reluctant Hero:
- Pakku and Yugato are highly skilled Masters in their elements, chosen amongst the White Lotus to teach the Avatar. While Pakku is brutal verging on sadistic with his student, gaining Zuko's hatred and mistrust, Yugato does his best to help the youth to open and comfort him. It can be linked to their respective opinions about the new Avatar: Pakku sees a willful teen whose pride needs to be broken, Yugato sees a confused boy struggling with his newfound destiny and the duties coming with it.
- The Water and Fire princesses, Yue and Azula, couldn't be more different if they tried. Yue is the ultimate Nice Girl who's ready to help a boy from another nation, while Azula is so callous she hopes her own brother died to let her gain the throne.
- Deadly Nightshade gives one to Damian Wayne in the person of Hawthorne Isley, also a son of Batman who was raised by his villainous mother and don't enter his father's life until hitting the double digits. Where Damian is very much a Badass Normal Tyke Bomb, Harry inherited magical ability and plant-control from his mom who raised him as normally she could. And while Damian always knew he was "the son of Batman", Harry is totally unaware of his dad's Secret Identity.
- Sanduleak serves as this to Betelgeuse in Say It Thrice. Both are poltergeists who were named for stars and have annoying limitations on their powers. However, Betelgeuse is more of an Anti-Hero, with his own dubious moral code and standards, and has a Morality Pet (Lydia) who keeps him from being too awful. Sanduleak, on the other hand, has all of Betelgeuse's flaws turned Up to Eleven without any of his virtues to provide counterbalance. Naturally, they despise one another.
- In Sleeping Beetle, the Arc Villain Vasile is this for Beetlejuice. Their origin stories bear enough similarities that they started out the same way, but over time Vasile's bloodthirst and desire for revenge caused him to become a kind of vampire ghost known as a strigoi mort, making him literally bloodthirsty. Beetlejuice, on the other hand, was content to funnel his powers into annoying the hell out of others for his own amusement, and has mellowed over time instead of getting worse.
- In A Monsters Nature, it has been affirmed that part of Caitlyn's role is to serve as a foil to Brandon's ship, encouraging Brandon's humanity where the ship amplified his alien nature, to the extent that Brandon and Caitlyn's relationship became 'official' after Brandon 'introduced' her to the ship and both relationships were essentially 'ended' at the same time when Brandon destroyed the ship and abandoned Caitlyn after killing the Breyers, although Brandon does go back to Caitlyn later.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
- In Taaroko's Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel and Spike continue to act as this to each other, to the point that Spikes soul is taken from him by Drusilla after Angel becomes human, turning him back into a normal vampire, because Spike cant be bothered to keep trying to be a hero now that Buffys chosen Angel.
- In the Phineas and Ferb/The Simpsons crossover fic The Flynns Move To Springfield, Isabella and Lisa are foils to each other. Isabella is a kind, friendly Naïve Newcomer. Lisa is a spoiled, vain Alpha Bitch who treats others like dirt. Lisa is initially an Affably Evil Villain with Good Publicity, whilst Isabella is largely unnoticed by classmates. However, when Isabella gets the lead role in the school play, their positions flip, with Isabella becoming more popular and Lisa becoming more pshycopathic as jealousy begins to take her over. Essentially, the higher one ascends, the lower the other falls.
- Several more... benevolent examples occur in another crossover A Tale of Two Geniuses, in which most of the drama and humour comes from the similarities and differences of the leads.
- Bart vs. Phineas: Both are quite clever (and have a healthy Friendly Rivalry), but have differing personalities, as Phineas is idealistic, sweet-natured and well-mannered, while Bart is cynical, sarcastic and rude.
- Bart vs. Ferb: Both are sidekicks, with genuine respect for each other. They both have a dark side, but they have different personalities. Ferb is mild-tempered and quietly influential, preventing Phineas from going overboard, while Bart's flamboyance and irresponsibility are the tip of his self-destructive behaviour, leading to a Sibling Rivalry with his "genius" (Lisa).
- Lisa vs. Isabella: Both are intelligent young girls. However, Isabella is a lot more calmer and friendlier than the socially awkward, short-tempered Lisa.
- David Shapiro (the story's Big Bad) himself has traits that resonate or clash with each of the leads. He's an almost giftedly intelligent inventor (Phineas). He's quite theatrical and self-centred (Bart). He blatantly manipulates emotions (Ferb). He disregards human life and freedom (Lisa). He lacks any and all empathy (Isabella) and is coldly logical (again, Phineas).
- The Many Dates of Danny Fenton (Danny Phantom Western Animation, TV Series, and Comic Books.): In a sense, many of Danny's dates are a direct contrast in some way to each other.
- Kim Possible and Starfire are both redheads with green eyes and are heroines. Kim is a Badass Normal cheerleader and an independent with a sidekick who fights hand-to-hand and never learned Danny's secret. Starfire is an alien powerhouse on a team of other heroes who learns Danny's secret and fights similarly to him. They are also respectively his first and last dates.
- Alex of Totally Spies! and Diana Lombard are both secret agents. Alex is a spy while Diana is a paranormal agent. Alex is outgoing, cheerful and friendly while Diana is more reserved and mature.
- Gwen Tennyson and April O'Neil are both half-aliens, though the former was from her grandmother's genes while the latter was experimented on as a child. Both have unique powers and fight alongside a team that features a member who is a bit confrontational with Danny. Gwen is mature while April is a bit more laid back.
- Emma from Stōked and Cleo Setori are both affiliated with water. Emma is a surfer with limited experience while Cleo is a girl who loves sea life but can't be touched by water. Both are also dealing with heartbreak when they see Danny, though Emma is dealing with a crush while Cleo is dealing with an ex-boyfriend.
- Sabrina Spellman and Kara Kent are both spunky blonde girls that Danny quickly becomes fond of. Sabrina is a half-witch while Kara is an alien. Sabrina the same age while Kara is a year older. Most importantly, both kissed him on the lips. Sabrina's was accidental, Kara was not.
- Jenny Wakeman is a robot, having origins in science-fiction, while Musa is an interdimensional fairy, having fantasy origins. They are both among the more unusual girls Danny dated, and are very active and energetic girls. They also have to deal with other boys, as Jenny deals with a jealous Sheldon while Musa is still recovering from her ex-boyfriend.
- Cree Lincoln and Vicky from The Fairly OddParents are both child haters. Cree because she thinks being a teenager means she's above them, Vicky is just cruel. Also, Cree was genuinely nice to Danny before he learned she hates kids while Vicky only faked niceness in hopes her date was rich. In Danny and Kim, Cree regrets everything and only got five years in prison while Vicky got life and doesn't understand why her actions led her to this fate.
- Violet Parr is a girl Danny's age who is very shy and introverted. Jen Masterson is 2 years older and very extroverted. Both despite Dash Baxter and both grow fond of Danny because he makes the effort to make sure they enjoy their date.
- Phantasma and Spectra Vondergeist are both ghosts in school. Phantasma is younger and extroverted, Spectra is older but more introverted. Both had crushes on Danny Phantom prior.
- Wendy Corduroy and Debbie Thornberry are both of the most normal girls Danny's dated. Wendy is laid back while Debbie starts off being more haughty. Wendy is living in Gravity Falls and is pretty okay with it, Debbie travels the world and would love to stay somewhere.
- Gwen from Total Drama Island and Daria Morgendorffer start off disinterested in their blind dates. Gwen is very much a Goth girl with limited interests in dating while Daria is aloof and unemotional in general. Both however drop their attitude when Danny calls them out.
- Angelica Pickles starts of a bit of a brat, but Danny helps her loosen up and show she has a soft side. Katie Kaboom has a cute appearance, but her temper lets loose a destructive transformation that Danny is terrified of.
- Kitty Pryde is a mutant from New York. Barbara Gordon is a vigilante sidekick from Gotham City. They both discover Danny's secrets, both fight a member of their respective rogues gallery, and both are impressed with Danny's heroics.
- Makoto Kino is a Japanese brunette girl while Felicia Hardy is Caucasian blonde girl. They're both physical forces in combat, and both dislike how the A-list treat Danny, but Danny learns Makoto's secret without her knowing, while Felicia finds out Danny's but doesn't tell him.
- Penny Proud and Ginger Foutley are the other normal girls Danny dates. Penny is an African American girl who has a father who opposes dating, Ginger is a Caucasian girl who is dealing with heartbreak.
- Danny Fenton actually is one to some of his dates.
- Like Kim Possible, Danny is a teen hero, who also has to juggle school work, family and friends. The difference is that Kim is open about her heroics, while Danny has his Secret Identity.
- Danny and Felicia Hardy both have powers and similar color schemes. The difference is that Danny is a superhero and Felicia is a thief.
- Danny and Daria Morgendorffer are both pretty snarky. However, Danny is better adjusted and more social than Daria is.
- Danny and Violet Parr are both heroes with energy shields and invisibility as powers. Violet was born with her powers and came from a family of heroes, Danny got his in a lab accident and his parents are ghost hunters who don't know.
- Gwen Tennyson to Kim Possible. Both are redheads with green eyes and aces in their schools. While they both fight, Kim fights relatively normal bad guys with hand-to-hand combat, Gwen fights aliens and uses powers.
- Penny Proud to Cree Lincoln as the two African-American girls Danny dates. Cree is older and turned out to be a terrible person. Penny is the same age and is nicer and easier to get along with.
- Sabrina Spellman to Gwen Tennyson. Both have ancestry that grants them powers. Gwen has mana powers via her alien grandmother and is a secret superhero. Sabrina inherits her father's magical side and is trying to be a normal girl.
- Kara Kent to Kim Possible, as a First Love. Kim is a powerless heroine with no secret identity and was the first of Danny's date and the first he grew fondly of. Kara was his Celeb Crush before meeting her, she's alien heroine with a secret identity.
- Kara Kent to Gwen Tennyson. They both have cousins who are respected superheroes. Gwen is half-alien and a more mature girl, Kara is full alien and a much sweeter person.
- Jen Masterson to Emma Mackenzie . Both of them are from Canada and are 2 years older than Danny. Emma is still a novice at surfing and a bit shyer, Jen is actively trying to be an athlete and not afraid to voice her thoughts.
- Jen Masterson to Alex. Both of them are very atheletic and interested in sports. However, Alex is younger and much more naive, while Jen is older and more mature.
- Katie Kaboom to Kara Kent. Both of them are blonde, have powers, and are in love with Danny. Kara is the girl he had feelings for prior due to his Celeb Crush, Katie is the girl he comes to fear the most.
- Katie Kaboom to Angelica Pickles. Both act like a Spoiled Brat to a degree. Angelica because she's just that egotistical, Katie is because of her powers, her temper and her family's inability to control her.
- Barbara Gordon to Kim Possible. Both of them are skilled heroines with no superpowers. Kim doesn't have a Secret Identity while Barbara is Batgirl. Kim has siblings and both parents while Barbara is an only child and her father is the only parent in her life.
- Barbara Gordon to Kara Kent, both of them are DC heroines who are each a Distaff Counterpart to a recognizable hero. Kara is Superman's cousin and has many powers similar to Danny. Barbara is not related to Batman at all and is a skilled fighter without powers.
- Barbara Gordon to Felicia Hardy. Both are animal themed characters who wear dark colors. Barbara is a detective and a heroine, Felicia is a thief.
- Cleo Setori to Makoto Kino. Both are girls from a country outside of North America and have unique secrets. Albeit one is a superhero, the other just has a secret that makes things a bit difficult for her life.
- Starfire To Gwen Tennyson. Also a redhead with green eyes, though Gwen is only half-alien. Gwen is part of a team with a black-haired male who is interested in her, just like Starfire. Their powers are also based on emotion.
- Starfire To Kara Kent. They are both DC heroines from space. Kara looks very human and is able to socialize and hide among others. Starfire has many non-human features and speaks in a very foreign way.
- Paradox to Clockwork. Both are masters of time, though Clockwork is a ghost who prefers to only be involved if needed, Paradox is an empowered human who goes around and gets involved in person when he can.
- Bloom to Minako as the friend of a date who likes Danny too. Minako took the program, Bloom didn't. Minako is also not involved in a relationship, Bloom is.
- Camille Leon to Katie Kaboom. They are both blondes with a big interest in Danny. Katie is a former stalker who Danny is afraid of and aims to better herself to earn his forgiveness. Camille is a disowned heiress who actively uses her powers to make quick cash and Danny finds her very annoying.
- Paulina Sanchez to Bonnie Rockwaller. Paulina got a date with Kim's best friend Ron the same day Bonnie got one with Danny's best friend Tucker. They are both rude and stuck-up, and they both wanted to steal Danny from Kim in Danny and Kim. Paulina always liked Danny Phantom, while Bonnie just wants a famous boyfriend.
- Danielle sees Ms. Finster as one to Vlad Masters. Both of them can be nasty, but while the latter is just a selfish supervillain, the former does care for the children around her.
- Deadpool to the Warner Siblings. They can break the fourth wall and are much more cartoony than other characters. However, the siblings originated from a show aimed at children, while Deadpool is usually aimed for older audiences. The Warners ship Danny and Katie simply for a laugh, Deadpool is bitter his choices for potential girlfriends for Danny weren't chosen. Even their roles are different, the Warners are trolls who like to mess with Danny, Deadpool is more heroic like his film counterpart and saves Danny from a villain.
- In Ragnarok Ragna Guardian, Reiko and Roku are quite opposite to each other. Reiko is sweet and Roku is a Jerk with a Heart of Gold for starters.
- Protagonist Shiro has many foils, but his most apparent is Yuki. They both have the Swordsman class, but Shiro uses a Royal Rapier, while Yuki has a BFS. Shiro is an extrovert while Yuki is a loner. Shiro is a Gradual Grinder with no magical potency, while Yuki is a Mighty Glacier with insane magic power. Shiro chose the Knight Sub-class and became a Silver Knight, effectively becoming The Paladin, while Yuki chose the Paladin Sub-class, and became an Antipaladin, effectively becoming a Black Knight. Shiro is sanguine and Yuki is melancholic Shiro is a Kindhearted Simpleton and Yuki is a Magnificent Bitch Shiro held on to his idealism while Yuki threw it away. Shiro is given connotations of fire and is associated with Byakko while Yuki is given connotations of water and is associated with Koryu Basically, they are Red Oni, Blue Oni, Solar and Lunar, Fire/Water Juxtaposition, Force and Finesse, Harmony Vs Discipline, Tiger vs. Dragon and Sword and Sorcerer on enemy sides and on opposite ends of the Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism.
- The V in River basically establishes River Tam (Firefly) as a foil to V (V for Vendetta) when she reflects on a recent request for her to be a symbol for the new rebellion against the Alliance; she explicitly reflects on how Fawkes lost and V had nothing to live for after he won, whereas River accepts that she has her friends and family on Serenity.
- In Necessary To Win, a Girls und Panzer and Saki crossover found here, there are a few cases.
- Maho and Teru. The former is forced to keep distance from Miho as a result of having to be the Nishizumi heiress, which involves a cold and professional facade, but follows that role and fulfills her mother's expectations so that Miho will be able to live freely. The latter does not care whether her parents approve or disapprove of her doing tankery, and treats Saki coldly while putting on a cheerful face for the public.
- Yukari and Nodoka's families. Yukari has not made many friends through tankery until recently, but while her parents don't understand tankery well, they are supportive of her interest in it. By contrast, Nodoka has made friends through tankery, but her parents disapprove of her doing it.
- Also Hana's mother and Nodoka's father. Hana's mother is, in most cases, warm and caring to Hana, but also takes it personally when Hana goes into tankery against her wishes, since she is a traditional woman and wants Hana to inherit the Isuzu school of flower arranging. Nodoka's father is stern and emotionally distant, thinks tankery is a waste of time that distracts Nodoka from working toward a good job, but according to Nodoka, would not think as much of tradition and has a less specific goal for her, career-wise.
- The Nishizumi and Atago families. The former is highly traditional and is determined to win at all costs, while the latter has been established more recently, and is more concerned with players improving themselves, including learning from defeat. Specific members also contrast with each other.
- Shiho Nishizumi is cold, ruthless and distant from others. Masae Atago is warm, personable, and cares a great deal for her children and the rest of her family.
- Their eldest daughters. Maho Nishizumi is outwardly cold, and reveals very little about herself, including how much she cares for her sister, to her subordinates. Hiroe Atago is hot tempered and somewhat brutally honest, while more openly caring for her younger sister.
- Their younger daughters. Miho Nishizumi initially wanted to emulate her sister, but after realizing that Maho wanted her to find her own way of tankery, set out to find a way of tankery different from that of her family. Kinue Atago was initially uninterested in tankery, but once getting involved, is largely content to follow her sister's footsteps.
- Metroid: Kamen Rider Generations:
- Samus has some dynamics of this when it comes to two of her Kamen Rider companions, Mitsuzane Kureshima (Kamen Rider Ryugen) and Gou Shijima (Kamen Rider Mach)
- Samus to Mitsuzane: Both have their own dark sides and different personalities. Samus is mostly unaffected by any traumatic experiences back in her world, while Mitsuzane is utterly an insecure man and can be interpreted as what Samus would be like if he keeps losing the people he's close to. Samus represents the idealism and morality that Micchy has since lost, while Micchy himself serves as a moral compass and Love Interest to Samus. On the positive side, they are motivated to protect humankind from any threat that no one has ever faced.
- Samus to Gou: Both are incredibly athletic at a metaphysical level. Samus does not brag about her accomplishments as the greatest bounty hunter in the galaxy as she lives to fight as her sole duty. Gou is outwardly loudmouthed, arrogant and showy, doesn't have any problem to make a dramatic entrance.
- Gou and Mitsuzane are this to one another. Both are somewhat cynical and tend to rub each other the wrong way, making jokes at anyone's expense to hide their pain. Mitsuzane is mild-mannered and level-headed in contrast to the Motor Mouthed and hot-tempered Gou.
- In Xenophobia Samus serves as this to Ripley given to their similar personalities and their combat experiences. Both have a parent-child bonds with Hector and Newt, respectively.
- The Charmed (1998)/Angel crossover series Sent to the Witch establishes Angel and Cole as this in The Love of a Vampire in particular, with both characters demons with souls trying to redeem themselves of their recent turn to evil, with the difference being that there is a clearer line between Angel and Angelus than there is between Cole and the Source.
- When Dumbledore compares a young Tom Riddle and Artemis Fowl in King of Serpents: Game of Shadows, he reflects that both of them are brilliant, deceptive and curious handsome youths. However, while Riddle is able to associate with people without truly connecting with them, Artemis utterly fails to bond with people he doesn't actually like. Also, Artemis has no interest in ruling the world, because he refuses to deal with human stupidity.
- In The Spectrum Game, Histo foils Inigo in many ways. They are both abrasive people who are relatively disliked in school, but otherwise they couldn't be any more different than night and day:
- Inigo and Histo are both often rude to their allies. Inigo does it because of accidental Brutal Honesty due to having No Social Skills. Histo does it because he is a colossal Jerkass who likes being rude.
- Inigo lacks romantic or sexual desire of any kind, but is a minor Clueless Chick Magnet. Histo is a Harem Seeker who constantly gets rejected.
- Inigo is very commonly shown as being In Touch with His Feminine Side. Histo is a jock who attempts to prove his manliness to everyone, and he is pretty manly.
- Histo has red Tsurime Eyes and a black afro, while Inigo has blue Tareme Eyes and relatively tame white hair.
- Inigo is the one willing to endanger himself/put his life on the line for the sake of someone else. Histo is rarely ever kind and only ever does things for himself.
- Inigo is aware of his own faults and shortcomings and admits to them, to the point that it almost becomes Heroic Self-Deprecation. Histo has an over-inflated self image and likes to flaunt his 'good qualities'.
- Both the Windflower family (Inigo's family) and the Kokuro family (Histo's family) are incredibly rich, but Inigo, likely due to already getting enough attention at school for accidentally killing Amino, hides his grand net worth. Histo loves to boast about his money and so it's no secret that he is the richest kid in school.
- Inigo is a calm and collected Stone Wall in battle, relying on speed and finesse to compensate for his low damage output. Histo is a smug, cocky Glass Cannon who has no battle strategy beyond 'hit it as hard as I can until it dies from it'. Also, Inigo is a swordsman, Histo is The Gunslinger.
- FateBlack Reflection: Saber and Ichigo are polar opposites of one another. Saber is a stoic knight with a golden sword who wears predominantly white and blue, whereas Ichigo is an emotional samurai with a jet black blade whose bankai outfit incorporates black and red. Saber's Excalibur is a beam of holy light, while Ichigo's Getsuga Tensho is a ray of spiritual darkness. Even their motivations are opposite: Saber desperately wants the Holy Grail whereas Ichigo has no interest in it at all and is just participating in the war to keep the Grail out of the hands of anyone who might misuse it for something horrible.
- Sauron and Fankil, the two main antagonists of The Heart Trilogy. They're both ancient evil entities and former lieutenants of the first Dark Lord Morgoth. Sauron, Morgoth's second-in-command, is a corrupted Maia who has lost his physical form, while Fankil, Morgoth's son, is a demon with a physical form. After Morgoth was cast into the void, Sauron took the title of the Dark Lord for himself and aspires to conquer Middle-Earth for himself. Fankil in turn regards Morgoth as the true Dark Lord for whom the world belongs to, and his goal is to free Morgoth and serve him as he rules the world. While the more far-reaching yet bodiless Sauron commands vast armies, Fankil works alone with his disfigured yet powerful body. They both take interest in Smaug and his love interest Kathryn, but due to reasons related to their goals, Sauron targets Smaug more than Kathryn while Fankil is solely interested in Kathryn.
- The Last Son of Tomorrow puts Terry McGinnis as the Good Counterpart to Lex Luthor, both of them heading powerful corporations, being responsible for many brilliant tech-advances and having a secret agenda. But where Lex is a certified genius who squanders his smarts by trying to dominate the world, Terry relies on his alien supercomputer to genuinely help people. Also, their relationship with Superman wildly differs - Arch-Enemy on one hand, Intergenerational Friendship on the other.
- It's actually implied Superman is aware of this and went out of his way to befriend Terry because he wants to ensure there won't be another Luthor on the rise.
- Fanfic author Reyel has written two crossover fics adding Superman and Wonder Woman respectively to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Avenger of Steel and Avenger Goddess, which each present a fascinating twist on how the DC heroes interact with the MCU, with the two fics essentially serving as foils to each other. The most obvious difference is that Superman makes his debut shortly after the Battle of New York when Zod's forces come to Earth, with the result that he is essentially the Avengers' super-powered 'little brother', learning from them and expanding his contacts as the story unfolds, particularly with his unconventional ties to Natasha and Jessica Jones. By contrast, Wonder Woman becomes involved in events during the Second World War, forms a bond with Steve Rogers and the Howling Commandos to the point that she considers them family, and seems set to be the 'Team Mom' of the Avengers as she adopts Natasha in 1991 after dismantling the Red Room and all but explicitly states that she sees Tony as her nephew.
- In-narrative, Avenger of Steel also establishes that Superman is essentially a foil to Loki, as both of them were raised by a species other than their species of birth, but where Loki set out to conquer other races because he came to believe he deserved to rule, Superman has dedicated himself to protecting lesser races.
- In My Huntsman Academia, pretty much every member of Team MNVW, Team RSBR, and Team TABY are foils to everyone else on their team in some shape or form.
- When they eventually meet in Walking in the Shadows, Xander and Raven physically, spiritually, and mentally. Xander's Tall, Dark, and Handsome with a healthy tan while Raven's a short and pale goth. He's outgoing and goofy while she's The Stoic by necessity. Xander willingly became a cleric of Aphrodite (and Eros), gaining Super Strength and the ability to heal mental and emotional trauma via Intimate Healing. Raven is the daughter of Trigon whose powers lend more towards support roles and can heal physical damage with her soul. Lastly, Raven is a powerful sorceress while Xander is an artificer who can make magical artifacts but not cast spells.
- Code Geass: Paladins of Voltron: A Code Geass and Voltron: Legendary Defender crossover.
- The Galra Empire can be considered one to the Holy Britannian Empire. Both are tyrannical empires who have conquered countless people and taken away their freedom. The main difference is that Britannia at least gives the conquered people a chance to become "Honorary Britannians," while no such thing exists with the Galra.
- Lelouch is an extremely pronounced one with Zarkon, the former Black Paladin. Zarkon is The Emperor of the Galra Empire, is a One-Man Army but is usually content with using his minions to do his dirty work, and has incredible versatility with his bayard. Lelouch, meanwhile, is a quarter Galra Fallen Prince of the Britannian Empire, is physically weak but leads from the front, and lacks any personal weaponry, instead relying upon his empowered Geass. Additionally, Lelouch has near-total trust in all of his friends, to the point of sharing his identity with the rest of the Paladins, while Zarkon only has total trust in Haggar, and otherwise rules through fear. Even their origins are opposites - Zarkon was the beloved leader of both his people and the Paladins and only turned evil due to outside influence, while Lelouch had one of the worst childhoods imaginable but became a hero despite it.
- Lelouch is also one to Lotor. In addition to the points listed under Lotor's entry, both also try to establish themselves as distinct from their fathers while being surprisingly similar to said fathers. The difference is that, ultimately, Lelouch really is more moral than his father and, as shown in canon with Zero Requiem, is willing to accept that his actions were wrong and try to atone for them, while Lotor ultimately is little better than his father and, when faced wit his mistakes, will try to downplay/brush them off.
- Kallen is one to Keith from regular Voltron - both are the Red Paladins of their teams, and have a close relationship with their Black Paladins (platonic for Keith, romantic for Kallen). Both are also amongst the most experienced members of their teams and have pronounced parental issues (Bastard Angst for Kallen, Parental Abandonment for Keith) and were rather isolated at the start of the story. However, while Kallen hid her issues under a façade, Keith had no reason to do so.
- Allura to Lelouch - both are former royalty who were forced to their homelands. Both also have an extremely loyal servant of the opposite gender. There are plenty of differences, though: Allura was forced to leave for her own safety due to Zarkon invading Altea, while Lelouch was exiled for daring to speak against his father. Lelouch has many half-siblings and several friends while Allura is one of the last Alteans alongside Coran. Allura had a good relationship with her father and mother while Lelouch, as previously stated, was exiled for defying his father's will and eventually found a resistance movement to oppose his father's empire. Finally, Allura generally prefers to take straightforward action against the Galra, while Lelouch prefers to fight strategically.
- Coran to Sayoko. Both are the loyal servants of royalty, but while Coran is generally a Non-Action Guy (though he can certainly fight when he wants to), Sayoko is a Ninja Maid.
- Haggar to C.C. - both are magical, immortal women associated with a Black Paladin and have provided magical aid to said Paladins. Whereas C.C. mostly tries to maintain a professional relationship with Lelouch (and often annoys him for her own amusement), Haggar is truly loyal to Zarkon and treats him as a close friend.
- Lotor and Lelouch are both chessmasters and the sons of powerful emperors who exiled them. They also have... less than ideal relations with their birth parents. But while Lelouch has his sister Nunnally and has mostly good memories of his mother, Lotor is an only child and never knew his mother as she had turned into Haggar. Additionally, both are only part Galra, but while Lotor inherited the worst traits of the Galra from his father, Zarkon, Lelouch inherited the absolute best ones from his grandmother, who is implied to be Krolia.
- Lotor and Suzaku are both Internal Reformists who wish to change their respective empires, but while Suzaku is an "Eleven" who willingly became an Honorary Britannian to do so, Lotor is a Galra/Altean hybrid and the crown prince of the Galra Empire.
- Lotor and Kallen are both children of two worlds (half-Britannian, half-Japanese for Kallen, half Galra, half-Altean for Lotor) who despise their paternal homelands and people. But while Kallen is able to move past these issues and have friends with Britannians (who she accepts as not being Always Chaotic Evil), Lotor has a borderline Irrational Hatred of the Galra, and has had plans to totally exterminate them.
- Interestingly enough, there is one trait that all of Lotor's Foils share that he himself lacks: while Kallen, Lelouch, and even Suzaku are willing to admit that they have occasionally made mistakes and change their plans to be more moral, Lotor will never stray from his course due to all of the sacrifices he has made and not recognizing just how bad some of his choices were/are.
- Charles zi Britannia to Zarkon. Both are the Emperors of their respective empires, who rule with iron fists. Both also started with the noblest of intentions. However, while Charles still has those intentions in mind, Zarkon has long since devolved into being just a power-hungry tyrant.
- Marianne vi Britannia to Haggar. Both are women who act as the Number Two of an emperor who is also their husband, whilst also being accomplished fighters. Both are also Happily Married and have ways to extend their lives beyond what is natural - Marianne via Body Surf, Hagar through the usage of Quintessence. Finally, both are also talented fighters. As for differences, Marianne is a physical fighter to Haggar preferring magic, and while Marianne is genuinely well-intentioned, Haggar has long since lost any good intentions she had. Also, while Marianne still remembers her time as Charles love, Haggar doesn't.
- Lloyd to Coran - both are downright obsessed with an advanced piece of technology (the Lancelot for Lloyd, the Castle of Lions for Coran) and tend to grate on their companions' nerves. Lloyd, however, has No Social Skills, while Coran is incredibly refined when he wants to be. Additionally, Lloyd tends to be rather amoral vs Coran being unambiguously on the side of good. One wonders what would happen if they were to meet.
- Code Prime - R1: Rebellion: A Code Geass and Transformers crossover.
- Bumblebee finds Lelouch similar to Soundwave of all bots - both are master planners who pretty much obliterate their competition with well thought out strategies. Lelouch, in turn, upon learning of Soundwave, compares him to both himself and Schneizel. Of course, Soundwave was a low-ranked gladiator in the past while Lelouch and Schneizel were born privileged royals who are anything but fighters.
- It's lampshaded by the Autobots how similar Lelouch is to Megatron and Suzaku is to Optimus. However, eons of experience have made Optimus a great deal more pragmatic than Suzaku, who is more idealistic and can't yet comprehend that some people just won't change for the better. Lelouch may be similar to Megatron, but unlike Megs, he can feel compassion, empathy, and form strong bonds with others while Megatron is a sociopath that only sees others as tools to achieve his goals. In addition, their origins are almost polar opposite from their comparisons. Lelouch was a Royal Britannian while Megatron was a low-class gladiator. Suzaku is an "11" turned "Honorary Britannian" while Optimus was a high-class archivist.
- While Lelouch and Suzaku were already this in canon, their Foil status is further highlighted by their interactions with the Cybertronnians leaders on their respective sides - Lelouch completely trusts Optimus and is slowly becoming a better person because of it, while Suzaku is understandably wary of Megatron and has slowly been corrupted by him.
- Lelouch has yet another foil in Optimus - both are rebel leaders who came from relatively prestigious backgrounds. But while Optimus managed to enact the reforms he sought while still maintaining his prestige (and was only forced to become violent when the Decepticons struck first), Lelouch lost almost everything as a child and initially led his revolution out of revenge, before coming to believe in his own rhetoric.
- Finally, Lelouch has one other pronounced foil: Bumblebee. In terms of attire, Lelouch is Dark Is Not Evil while Bumblebee is Light Is Good. Lelouch is a natural-born leader while Bumblebee prefers to follow the lead of others. Lelouch is a talented speaker while Bumblebee is The Speechless. Lelouch is a Non-Action Guy while Bee is a frontline fighter. Finally, in regards to knowledge, Lelouch and Bee represent intelligence and wisdom - Lelouch is a master planner and manipulator, but can still be caught flat-footed by things he didn't predict. Bee, meanwhile, may not be much of a planner but is well aware of how things can go wrong and warns Lelouch to expect unforeseen consequences.
- Optimus Prime to Suzaku. Optimus shares Suzaku's idealism, but has it tempered with experience and a better understanding of why conflicts can happen. Additionally, Optimus started out as an archivist (a librarian, essentially) from the upper classes of Cybertron while Suzaku, though born into an influential family, was reduced a second class citizen at best after his homeland was conquered.
- While it has yet to be brought up in the story, Kallen's actually a pretty good one for Soundwave - both are extremely talented warriors that hold positions of significant importance within their respective organizations. Both also hold special relationships with their respective leaders - a platonic one for Soundwave, a questionably romantic one for Kallen. Both relationships are also reciprocated. There's one very pronounced difference, though - while Soundwave downright encourages the worst parts of Megatron's behavior, Kallen brings out the best parts of Lelouch's character. Additionally, Kallen prefers to fight up close, while Soundwave normally uses his Mini-Con army and Groundbridge to deal with foes.
- Suzaku is also one to Megatron as well, as the two of them were low-class inhabitants of a flawed caste system but were able to rise to prominence by recognition of their incredible fighting valor. However, while Megatron rose to command and maintained loyalty within his ranks by making sure they always aware of his superior might, Suzaku is subservient (and by extension, much more manipulable) and would rather follow commands than issue them.
- Cornelia to Airachnid - both are highly skilled female fighters in their respective organizations with a penchant for melee combat. Other than that, though, the two could not be more different - Cornelia uses a ground-based Knightmare while Airachnid's alt-mode is a helicopter. Cornelia prefers blunt action against her foes while Airachnid enjoys playing with her victims. Cornelia leads her forces while Airachnid prefers to let others do the planning. Finally, while Cornelia has moments where she is surprisingly sympathetic (such as her concern for Euphemia), Airachnid is never portrayed as anything other than a monster.
- Cornelia's also one to her half brother, Lelouch. Both are Frontline Generals, but while Lelouch only leads from the front out of personal morals and is otherwise a lackluster pilot, Cornelia leads the charge because she enjoys battle and is a skilled warrior. Cornelia is brash and aggressive versus Lelouch being calm and collected. Lelouch has only been Outgambitted exactly once in the story, while Cornelia has only pulled off a single win. Things have only gone From Bad to Worse for Cornelia, while Lelouch's life has primarily gotten better. Additionally, while Cornelia has suffered numerous defeats yet absolutely refuses to swallow her pride, it took Lelouch receiving exactly one Humble Pie from her to realize he needed to start changing for the better. Finally, while both half siblings work with a Cybertronian leader, Cornelia prefers to work professionally with Megatron while Lelouch views Optimus as a Parental Substitute.
- Starscream to Airachnid - the two of them are the least sympathetic of the Decepticons, share similar body-types, and have aerial alt-modes. As for differences:
- Starscream's alt-mode is a jet while Airachnid's is a helicopter.
- Starscream desires to lead, while Airachnid is willing to follow as long as she can indulge in her sadism.
- Starscream is a competent planner, but frequently has his schemes ruined by circumstances that could happen, but which he never expected. Airachnid, meanwhile, prefers to play things by ear, with most of her loses being due to a Spanner in the Works or five.
- Airachnid left the Decepticons because she wasn't able to indulge in her sadism following the end of the war. Starscream remained so that he could try and become leader.
- Starscream's actions are usually (but not always) Played for Laughs. Airachnid's actions, however, are always Played for Drama.
- The Decepticons to the Autobots regarding their human allies - while the Autobots tend to be extremely friendly with the Black Knights (to the point that most of the named Autobots have human partners within the Black Knights), the Decepticons prefer to keep their relationship with their Britannian allies strictly professional.
- Fate/Harem Antics:
- Angelica Ainsworth is a stoic Punch-Clock Villain. Her Servant Jeanne d'Arc Alter is a boisterous Card-Carrying Villain.
- Illya is an albino Older Than They Look girl who while innocent looking can be the craziest of the Masters. Her Servant Raikou is a dark-haired fully-developed woman who while belonging in the Berserker class, is actually quite sane.
- Miyu is a quiet, lonely girl who barely even leaves her house and has little interest in the Holy Grail, only joining because she misinterpreted what the War entailed. Her Servant Elizabeth Bathory is a loud socialite who wants everyone to love her and flies into a blind rage if anyone implies there's something wrong with her singing.
- Fiore is a gentle Ill Girl with a single, simple wish who dislikes fighting but does so in the most efficient way possible. Her Servant Oda Nobunaga is a Large Ham Boisterous Bruiser Blood Knight who doesn't care what happens as long as she gets a good fight out of it. Fiore's brother Caules cares about her very much while Nobunaga's brother Nobukatsu betrayed her.
- The Power of Seven sees quite a few characters become foils to each other in terms of the impact their attitudes towards sex has on their relationships with others;
- Ron and Ginny are a comparatively dark example of this as they each find themselves aroused by watching others have sex, but for Ron it's all about perving over such a hot sight, where Ginny is primarily aroused by the emotional aspect of the act when watching Harry doing it, such as Harry's genuine dedication to making Luna feel good.
- Katie and Demelza provide a fascinating contrast due to them helping Harry explore the extreme sides of his issues with control. After Harry has spent most of his life with the Dursleys belittling him and various factions of the wizarding world directing his destiny, he has come to resent feeling as though he has no control in a situation; Katie's subtle domination of him helps him accept that surrendering control doesn't always have to be a bad thing, while Demelza's submission to and trust in him empowers Harry and helps him gain confidence in himself.
- Ginny and Fleur serve as an unexpected contrast to each other in their initial attitudes towards sex, with Ginny embracing her high sex drive while Fleur tries to deny it.
- Chapter 49 sets up Gabrielle Delacour as a contrast to Demelza Robbins; where both are superficially 'devoted' to Harry, Gabrielle is essentially attracted to Harry's celebrity image and fantasizes about having him to herself where Demelza was seduced by Harry rather than the 'Boy-Who-Lived' and only pursued a relationship with Ginny's permission.
The Hunger Games
- The Parts We Play:
- In District One, Marvel joined the Academy of his own choice with the dream of being a hero, while Glimmer is revealed to be a legacy tribute who was pressured into joining by her father as she had a better chance than her brothers.
- Cato and Clove are set up as a new style of star-crossed lovers in contrast to Katniss and Peeta, with the tributes from Two ruthless killers who fight only for each other where Peeta and Katnisss actions are often based around saving others.
- Peeta and Gale are this to each other as always, with Gale almost demanding a relationship with Katniss due to her pregnancy where Peeta never seeks anything but Katnisss happiness, even if it costs him his own life.
- To better oppose the Careers Alliance, Peeta and Prim form their own team with Thresh, Rue and Rani, focused more on protecting each other than eliminating their enemies and with a clear promise that they wont attack each other unless one of them attacks first.
- Valkyrie On Fire:
- Glimmer and Katniss are obvious examples of this, with Glimmer the outgoing blonde Femme Fatale while Katniss is a quieter brunette tomboy, although they make a good team nevertheless.
- Even Cinna is given a Foil in the form of Puella, District Ones stylist, as Puella goes to far too much effort to make himself and his creations stand out where Cinna draws a clear line between making a dramatic impression and pure lack of taste.
- The New Adventures of Invader Zim
- Gaz and Viera — both are Goths, but while one is every anti-social, misanthropic cliche in the book, the other is a genuinely nice and caring person.
- Zim and Tak both fled demeaning assignments to prove themselves as Invaders, and are obsessed with proving themselves. The difference is that Zim is an outcast and fails as an Invader because he destroys everything around him, making him a danger to the Empire that was sent on a fake mission to get ride of him; meanwhile, Tak is an excellent Invader and it's implied she would have been a great asset to the Empire, and her mission is real as a chance to become a real Invader.
- Skoodge and Tenn are both Hypercompetent Sidekicks to more maniacal partners. The difference is that despite being a successful Invader that conquered the first planet for the Empire, Skoodge is an outcast because of his height, his contributions are ignored, and he's often abused by the Tallest. Tenn is a respected Invader because of both her height and skills. They both were betrayed by the Tallest, with Skoodge being used as artillery against said planet after he pacified it, and then had his achievement given to someone else, while Tenn was forgotten by the Tallest on a mission. Another major difference is that Skoodge joins Zim's rebellion, in response to the Tallest treating him like crap, while Tenn stays loyal to the Tallest because they at least bothered to acknowledge her.
- Darth and Skoodge were both born different and could not meet the standards of Irken society, with Darth born blind and Skoodge born short. But the difference is how their Tallest treated them and how it affected them. Tallest Miyuki had taken sympathy on Darth and had him spared, allowing him to rise to lead the Consulars. Tallest Red and Purple hate and abuse Skoodge; because of that, despite being a skilled Invader, his contributions are ignored and given credit to someone else. Due to this, Darth stays loyal to the Empire and respects his Tallest's memory, while Skoodge turned again the Empire to get revenge on his Tallest.
The Legend of Korra
- In the The Legend of Korra fanfic Book Five: Legends, Temuji is an obvious one for Korra. He and Fumiko also act as one for Mako and Bolin collectively, as a pair of bending siblings whove lost all family except for each other. Their (original) elements even match. Retroactively some elements of Temuji also match Asamis story arc about missing a deceased parent, though whereas Asami came to terms with this, sadly Temuji did not.
- Flowers Drenched In Vodka: Maki and Eli, as pointed out by the former. Both struggle with substance abuse problems- Maki with tobacco, Eli with alcohol- but while Maki is trying to quit, Eli's alcoholism is ruining her life and her relationship.
Marvel Cinematic Universe
- In born of hell('s kitchen):
- Both Peter's parents contrast each other — Matt is openly the more doting one who has no qualms being empathic and is comfortable with his powers, yet he often doubts himself and needs his friends' advice. Jessica is rather more strict and reserved, quite worried about using her abilities in her mundane life, but is strong-willed enough to put herself together on her own.
- The Walkers vs the Defenders and affiliates. Both Dorothy and Trish are deliberately kept unaware of Peter's existence in spite of their legal ties to him, as Jessica fears they would hurt him out of carelessness or self-interest. On the other side, the Defenders are introduced to Peter as a Family of Choice and rally together to ensure his protection, even if they're "only" his parents' friends.
- Ned Leeds is blatantly compared to Foggy Nelson when Matt discovers the boy is his son's best friend who does all the talking, and is generally lighter-hearted. However, the parallels stop with their reaction to their best friend revealing he's less than ordinary: Foggy was immediately freaked and worried, and would obviously rather have Matt hanging Daredevil back to lead a happier, safer civilian life, while Ned was completely ecstatic to learn about Peter's superpowers and doesn't see why the other boy feels reluctant about outing his abilities to his parents.
- In Mega Man: Defender of the Human Race, Dr. Light and Dr. Wily contrast in every way, from personality to backstory.
- Kalinka and Tron Bonne; both have an attraction to Mega Man but only one is love. Also, Roll and Tron both care for their robot companions but are on opposite sides of the law.
- Mega Man, Proto Man, and Bass all qualify too.
- George Cochran is an honest politician who believes in equality for robots, but his son William is a fervent anti-robot racist.
- In Mega Man Reawakened, Megaman and Bass are both the doctors' grandsons, and humans who have been rebuilt as robots, but which side they're on is different.
- Bass and Blues are driven by power, but while Bass is hotheaded, Blues is calm and rational.
- The One to Make It Stay:
- Chat Noir serves as a foil to himself after having his memories Oblivated. Normally, Chat's desire to get together with his akuma-busting partner leads him to ignore all of her efforts to keep things strictly professional. Even when she tells him outright that she's not interested, or that there's somebody else, he keeps flirting and trying to force her to return his feelings. While their memories are erased, however, she tells him that she suspects she has a boyfriend (based on how many of the pictures in her cell feature Luka). Though Chat's disappointed, he accepts this, only confessing how he feels out of the mistaken belief that he doesn't normally have the courage to admit it. He makes very clear that she's under no obligation or pressure to return his feelings, and accepts her gently turning him down with grace. As opposed to how he normally responds: by stubbornly refusing to take no for an answer.
- Alya and Nino are thrown into sharp contrast in how they react to their superhero alter egos being benched over the summer. Alya absolutely refuses to admit any fault in the matter, insisting that Ladybug is just overreacting to her posting edited footage to her Ladyblog. What's more, she exaggerates the severity of her punishment while painting herself as the victim. Nino, by contrast, hears Ladybug out, recognizing that she has a point and that she's offering him a chance to do better and potentially prove himself, which he resolves to try and take. A side story from Alya's POV reveals that Nino calling her on this has helped her realize that Ladybug IS giving her a second chance, and is torn about how to proceed, as admitting her mistakes will have consequences she'd prefer trying to avoid.
- Burning Bridges, Building Confidence:
- Cole/Vexxin versus Adrien/Chat Noir is set up even before Master Fu makes her the new Fox. In fact, the main reason Fu decides another permanent hero is needed in the first place is because Chat is deliberately neglecting his duties, sitting on the sidelines and letting Ladybug fight alone in order to try and force her to 'admit she needs him' and agree to become his girlfriend. Cole reams him out for this, and when he still refuses to act, arms herself and jumps into the fray. Unlike Adrien, she takes her duties very seriously, coordinating and corroborating with Ladybug. Despite being warned that he's on thin ice, Chat continues to treat superheroics like a game and being generally disrespectful.
- Alya and Nino handle the classroom conflict very differently. While Alya becomes Lila's most violent and vicious defender, trusting her new BFF's claims without question, Nino quietly develops doubts and eventually seeks out answers for himself. Upon realizing just how awful they've all become, he approaches Marinette and her new circle of friends, admits he was wrong, and accepts their understandable reluctance to trust him. He works on proving his sincerity and desire to become a better person, while Alya continues spiraling ever further out of control, refusing to even consider the possibility that she's done anything wrong even as she faces ever harsher consequences for her actions.
- Alya and Adrien also serve as foils to each other. While Adrien is fully aware of Lila's true nature and Alya is completely taken in by her lies, and he isn't viciously defensive of her, he also doesn't do anything to help Marinette. Both blame her and Cole for the classroom drama — Alya because Lila has convinced her that Mari is the Bitch in Sheep's Clothing and that Cole's just a Jerkass; Adrien because he's certain Lila would have left them alone if they didn't stand up to her. Both are completely self-righteous in their convictions and blatant hypocrisy.
- In the Ms. Bustier chapter of ChaoticNeutral's Salt Series, a former student of hers comes to talk to her current class. Upon realizing that Bustier expects her to support her toxic teaching practices, the guest goes off, revealing that she and her classmates are loose counterparts of her latest students, and revealing the damage she's done to their lives:
- Vivienne, like Marinette, was one of her former 'model students', expected to Turn the Other Cheek and set a good example for everyone, as well as put their needs ahead of her own. The only reason she's doing well for herself now is because she's spent years deprogramming herself through therapy, learning how to stop being an Extreme Doormat, serving as everyone else's stepping stone and punching bag.
- Henrik, her other 'star student' and Adrien's counterpart, wasn't as lucky. He's become trapped in a loveless marriage with Delia, Lila's counterpart, who regularly cheats on and abuses him, even going so far as poisoning him in hopes of hastening his demise. Yet he stays with her, insisting that he can 'help her be better'.
- Candance, Chloe's counterpart, got away with bullying and belittling her classmates. Rather than following their 'shining examples', she simply learned that she could make things go her way by throwing tantrums until people gave in to her whims. This has gotten her repeatedly arrested for public disturbances, with the latest incident adding assaulting a police officer into the mix.
- Elodie, like Alya, grew up believing that she's always right and that anything is justified in the pursuit of her goals. This led to her becoming a Cowboy Cop who keeps getting her work thrown out due to her refusing to follow official channels and do things properly.
My Hero Academia
- In Amazing Fantasy, Izuku is as much an Expy of Peter as he is a foil. Both of them were scrawny nerds who were given the chance to become heroes by a spider-bite. Peter is a veteran who has been in the business for decades and has been ground down by everything he's lost in his crusade to help people. He's motivated by his failure to stop the crook who killed Uncle Ben, but that mantra has become far more bitter in recent years and he sometimes wishes he could just stop. Despite this, he's confident and great at what he does, hoping to keep Izuku from stumbling on his own path towards becoming a Hero. Izuku just got his powers and has no idea what he's doing. He has always wanted to be a Hero, having been inspired by All Might's example rather than personal tragedy. He's jittery and unsure of himself, wondering if he'd just be wasting Peter's time by becoming his student. Peter is also a constant quipper and jokester, while Izuku Cannot Tell a Joke.
My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
- Sasuke becomes this to Obito in Growing Strong. Both are Uchiha boys who fell in love with a female teammate whose name starts by "Ri", who serves as their Morality Chain and whose death awakens the Mangekyo Sharingan for their suitors. However, while Obito was unable to save Rin and decided to destroy reality for replacing it with an eternal dream, Sasuke did succeed to bring Riko back from the dead. Oh, and it costs him one Sharingan, which is another similarity with Obito.
- Shino of Team 8 is more intellectual and methodical that his emotionally-driven teammates, and has a happy family life, while Naruto is an orphan and Hinata's family is abusive.
- Ash and Red are constantly compared to one another in Pokémon Reset Bloodlines. Ash is an energetic, friendly trainer whose strategy focuses on flexible and unorthodox tactics, while Red is less emoting and friendly and is more focused on power and traditional tactics. Ash trains a Pokemon to individual strengths while Red will train it to it's species traits. Both possess abilities that can help them win battles: Ash chooses to not use his because he sees it as cheating while Red sees his as a natural talent that if he didn't use would be the equivalent of a fast person not running as fast as he could. One could see the two as foils between Anime trainers and Game trainers, just minus I.V and E.V considerations.
- Interestingly, Paul and Red also serve as foils to each other as to how each of them is a foil to Ash individually. Both of them are less friendly and close to people and their Pokemon than Ash is, but with Paul it's because he has no interest in doing so and thinks being friendly is a weakness. Red meanwhile does care for his Pokemon and has several standards about what it means to be a trainer, but his social awkwardness extends to them and doesn't bond with them as fast as Ash does.
- Misty and Iris are also foils to each other, especially as love interests for Ash. While both of them have developed a strong attraction to him, Misty's is focused mostly in his kind and caring nature and Iris' is more directed to his strength and drive to become stronger, but both of them still appreciate his other qualities. Misty also has been shown willing to tease him using her physical appeal, such as posing in swimsuits, while Iris doesn't try that, even on one occasion she bathed with him completely naked. Their upbringings also made them develop a hatred for humans, in Misty's case due to growing up with an abusive biological family and in Iris' case for being abandoned by her birth parents to die and growing up with Dragon Pokémon, but this ends up curbed after spending time with Ash.
- Akane in Ranma: Happenstance Gone Right serves as a foil to Ukyou and Shampoo to highlight why they're better fiances for Ranma. Ukyou and Shampoo are both extremely skilled cooks whereas Akane is a Lethal Chef. Akane claims to be a serious martial artist despite rarely training and treating martial arts as a hobby while Ukyou and Shampoo train constantly in their free time. Both girls are openly affectionate with Ranma whereas Akane is a world class Tsundere. And finally, while Akane is freaked out by Ranma's girl form, neither Ukyou nor Shampoo have a problem with it.
- In Marque and Reprisal, Itzak is a foil to the canon character Annie. While they are both the same age, Itzak is quiet and reserved. of course, his father had been killed early in the story.
- Oobleck and Alpha in In the Kingdom's Service are both directors in the Vale Secret Service but are complete opposites. Oobleck is A Father to His Men who knowingly gives up potential intel to kill the one responsible for one of his agents' deaths while Alpha callously has anyone who might have shaky loyalty tortured until they either break or die. Oobleck intends to return the stolen Paladin to Atlas after having a look at the insides but otherwise keeps everything above board. Alpha has an Atlas agent kidnapped and tortured for first the Paladin's location then for information on it's specs. Finally, Oobleck is a Well-Intentioned Extremist who genuinely wants to help protect Vale and it's citizens but hates the Dirty Business he has to engage in to do so and ultimately makes a Heroic Sacrifice to save the city. By contrast, Alpha is a Not-So-Well-Intentioned Extremist who only cares about staying in power, and outright says he'd let tens of thousands die to protect himself. The most obvious contrast shows in their opinions on the Mountain Glenn: Oobleck considers it a tragedy and confesses that Roman is right to want him dead for the deaths he caused that day; Alpha doesn't care it happened as the thousands of deaths solved Vale's overpopulation problem and that it was only the destitute and desperate who died rather than "anyone who mattered".
- RWBY Scar:
- Ruby and Neo are both childish teens who strongly resemble their huntress Missing Moms, but Ruby is a Badass Adorable Kid Hero and Neo is a violent Psychopathic Manchild.
- Taiyang and the criminal Roman are both single fathers whose lovers went on a mission and never came back. They're both overprotective of their daughters, who greatly resemble their mother's. Roman is more proactive than Taiyang, actively trying to stop Neo from getting into trouble, while Taiyang stays out of trouble. Taiyang is also secretly Ruby's step-father.
- Neo's mom Eon and Ruby's mother Summer were both headstrong huntresses who died on a mission. They also both have a Strong Family Resemblance with their daughters. But, while Summer loved her child and was extremely caring, Eon was colder towards Neo and had mixed-feelings towards her daughter's Creepy Child Troubling Unchildlike Behavior.
- Weiss and her twin Whitley both want the best for their family's company. While Weiss does care for her family (minus her abusive father Jacques), Whitley hates his family (minus his twin Weiss). Weiss is caring once her guard goes down, while Whitley seems nice until his true intentions come apparent. To add to this, Whitley gets a scar on the opposite side of his face from his sister's.
- Melanie and Miltia Malachite are foils to Ruby and Yang. They're sisters who deeply care for one another. Yang and Militia both have strong Big Sister Instinct towards their sister.
- Roman was once a bright-eyed hunter-in-training like Ruby, but after he was unjustly kicked out of Beacon and arrested for a crime he didn't commit, he lost his way. While in jail, he was asked to be involved in a crime and that's how he got involved with the illegal dust trade.
- Pyrrha and Cinder both end up being foils for one another. Cinder is what Pyrrha could be like if she gets caught up in her pain, hate for the world, and vengeful feelings over Jaune's death.
- In the Deliver Us From Evil Series, Inspector Patterson serves as a stark foil to Sherlock Holmes, though the two do not even meet in the first book. The people who know these men are unsettled by the similarities (right down to nearly-identical looks), but they also see the differences. Patterson is basically Holmes Up to Eleven. Patterson works as a deconstruction of the popular image of Sherlock Holmes, both in-universe and in Real Life. The author has said, "I think that by Patterson living the image Holmes attempts to project, it makes Holmes that much more human."
- In the Simpsons AU fic The Fourth Simpson Child, Lisa and Samantha serve as stark foils to each other. Lisa is cold, self-absorbed and cynical, and, as The Un-Favourite, motivated entirely by jealousy of her older sister. Samantha on the other hand is a friendly Wide-Eyed Idealist who is Homer and Marge's favourite. Samantha is legitimately talented, but ditzy and is kind to everyone she meets (as seen with the bullies, Fat Tony and eventually Sideshow Bob). Lisa is less talented, but is a Smug Snake Insufferable Genius, has virtually no contact with anyone except her family and she has no friends. Even their bedrooms play off of each other. Samantha's room has light blue cloud wallpaper, a "WELCOME" notice on the door, with pictures on the wall of herself and her friends, in which she is always smiling. Lisa's room has dark red wallpaper, has a "GO AWAY" notice on the door and has pictures of herself with a sour expression on her face.
- En Tempus Veritas: During the brief period when Lois and Lana are each aware of the others pregnancy (Lana believing she's pregnant with Lex's child while Lois is pregnant with Clark's), they are clearly presented as contrasts to each other, with Lana trying to hide her pregnancy and rarely aware of the baby as anything other than what ties her to Lex while Lois is more comfortable showing her baby bump to Clark and those close to her while reveling in the moments when it kicks.
Star Trek: Voyager
- In The Prodigal Daughter, witnessing the fake Equinox and their treatment of Marla encourages Janeway to be less willing to condemn the original Equinox crew for their actions, as there is a difference between a crew driven to desperate measures to survive an impossible situation and a group that cold-bloodedly decided to recreate a system that uses innocent creatures for fuel to deal with a potential future threat.
- The fanfic trilogy The Styne Saga - Endangered, Coercion, and Dynasty - expands on the Styne family seen in Season 10 to make them more explicit foils to the Winchesters, with both families defined by the supernatural - the Winchesters fighting it while the Stynes use it - but the Stynes are clearly presented as having extremely warped ideas about the true nature of family. When they learn of Sam's status as Lucifer's vessel and attempt to bring him into the family, while Jacob Styne develops a particular focus on Sam, he clearly only 'loves' Sam for what he believes Sam could be rather than accepting Sam for what he actually is. This is even reflected in their contrasting perspectives on their responsibilities for the lives lost by their actions, with the Stynes constantly blaming the Winchesters for the Stynes who die in their confrontations rather than accepting that they would have all lived if they'd just left Sam Winchester alone, in sharp contrast to the Winchesters blaming themselves for the innocents they couldn't save.
Sword Art Online
- Sword Art Online Abridged likes to play characters off its take on Kirito:
- Asuna is initially introduced as Kirito's opposite, a complete noob to video games who doesn't even know how to open SAO's menu, but with natural talent and months of work she manages to become a successful and high-ranking member of one of the game's top guilds. But as the series goes on and we learn more about her, it becomes apparent that Asuna might be even more messed-up than Kirito, she's just better at hiding it.
- The series also manages to rebuild the Not So Different dynamic between Kirito and Kayaba. Both are Insufferable Geniuses who think they're Surrounded by Idiots, both feel like they're at their best when they've escaped into a virtual world, and they even get each others' movie references. But by the end of the first season, Kirito's gone through enough Character Development to be willing to fight to save his fellow players, even if he despises them, and even if it means giving up his heroic existence in SAO.
- Season Two introduces Suguha, who in this treatment is a Little Sister Bully who revels in being able to thrash Kirito in kendo and constantly belittles him with sarcasm and insults. Which is to say that she behaves just like Kirito did in SAO at the start of the series, except in real life. The other twist is that while Kirito retreats into virtual reality to indulge his Power Fantasy and be the bully rather than the bullied, when we meet Suguha's online persona, she's roleplaying (badly) as a Damsel in Distress in an I Have You Now, My Pretty scenario.
The Worst Witch
- In Prince by the stargate time traveller, a visit by another magic school results in a meeting with Prince, who essentially serves as a foil for both Esmerelda Hallow and Mildred herself. Like Esmerelda, Prince is a first-born child, but unlike Esmerelda's more mature approach, Prince is utterly convinced of his own superiority and lords his status over everyone else, to the point of screaming like a baby when he doesn't like his food and demands to use only his own personal toilet. At the same time, Prince serves as a foil to Mildred because he is his school's 'worst wizard' (even if he believes he's actually great) because he never puts any effort into his studies, whereas Mildred is only the 'worst witch' due to her lack of experience, with Prince's headmaster musing that Mildred is likely to go further than Prince even though Prince is from a magical background where Mildred only just learned about magic, as Mildred actually tries to learn and improve herself where Prince coasts through life without putting any effort into his studies.