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Affirmative Action Legacy

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Minute Man: I'm black?
Cosgro Toys Exec: We decided to take a multi-cultural approach.
Minute Man: But, I'm not black.
Cosgro Toys Exec: I think you have vaguely African features...

So, the Big Two comic publishers have a couple of issues. The first: brand new characters not heavily tied to already existing characters and continuity have a hard time becoming popular and long-lasting. The second, the eras when characters could stick (the Golden and Silver Ages) produced heterosexual white males almost exclusively. The solution to both? Take a preexisting character, and pass their superhero identity to a woman, racial minority, or LGBT person!

Trouble is, the legacy characters, minority or not, often also don't stick very well and there is a history of them being replaced. It also doesn't help that sometimes, these new characters don't catch on and fall out of a regular role, occasionally resulting in another trope entirely. On the other hand, several of these characters have gone on to be popular and enduring heroes in their own right.


See also Gender Flip, Race Lift, She's a Man in Japan, More Diverse Sequel.


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    DC Comics 
  • In the pages of Grant Morrison's Animal Man Bwana Beast (a Mighty Whitey) was replaced by a black man from Africa who renamed the hero Freedom Beast.
    • The final issue of Justice League of America vol. 2 had one of the heroes returning to Africa to find a successor for the Freedom Beast mantle much later in the time line.
    • "The Last Days of Animal Man", a mini-series set 20 Minutes into the Future, depicts an unnamed African-American as the new Flash.
  • Greg Weisman created a new, black Aqualad named Kaldur'ahm for his Young Justice animated series, and the character was brought over into the comics as well (where he is Black Manta's estranged son). However, unlike most characters who exemplify this trope, Kaldur's predecessor had not gone by "Aqualad" in well over a decade. It's also worth noting that in the show's continuity Garth was never Aqualad, presumably making Kaldur the first.
  • The Atom:
    • Ray Palmer (white male) replaced by Ryan Choi (Asian male). Choi's run in The All-New Atom ended in a thudding tonal shift around the time Ray Palmer returned from a self-imposed extradimensional exile.
    • And then un-replaced with the return of Palmer and the death of Choi until he was later restored to life in Convergence.
    • And then there's Rhonda Pineda, a Latina college student and another Atom. Just kidding! She's the evil Atomica from Earth 3, and a mole for the Crime Syndicate of America.
    • DC Rebirth sees Choi reintroduced to DC's main continuity, several years younger, taking up the Atom identity to find Ray Palmer in the Microverse.
  • The first Azrael (best known for temporarily becoming the new Batman during Knightfall) was a blonde named Jean-Paul Valley, while his successor was a black guy named Michael Lane. Like a few others on the list, this got reset in the New 52, with Jean-Paul back as Azrael.
  • Batman:
    • Batgirl: Bette Kane (White and Jewish) replaced by Barbara Gordon (white) who was replaced with Cassandra Cain (half-Chinese half-white) who was succeeded by Stephanie Brown (white, lower-class), replaced with Barbara Gordon (formerly disabled).
    • The New 52: Future's End introduced a future team known as the League of Batgirls. In addition to the aforementioned Cassandra Cain and Stephanie Brown, the team's third Batgirl was a 12-year old African-American girl named Tiffany Fox.
    • The Batman Beyond comic set in the DC Animated Universe has Barbara's mantle be eventually taken up by the brown skinned Nissa.
    • In the New 52, Cassandra has never been Batgirl, but becomes the new Orphan (the identity her Caucasian father had) after the original performs a Heroic Sacrifice.
    • A retcon story established that prior to becoming Batman, Bruce Wayne operated as part of a team of Chinese superheroes under the name Darknight. Years later, a new, Chinese Darknight appeared as a member of the JSA.
    • Katherine "Kate" Kane, the current Batwoman, is a Jewish lesbian. Interestingly, she is not a legacy within the comics themselves, as her predecessor (the original Batwoman) was retconned out of existence in Crisis on Infinite Earths, and she is a reimagining of the same character instead of an inheritor of the title. That Batwoman was a straight gentile woman.
      • Retcon! Batman Incorporated has established that Kathy Kane was the first Batwoman, for about a year early in Batman's career. Their relationship is that Kathy is Kate's aunt.
      • In addition, Kate Kane passed on the Batwoman mantle to the above-mentioned Bette Kane in the alternate future Titans Tomorrow....Today! storyline. And then Titans Tomorrow Batwoman was retconned to be Cassandra Cain.
    • Another rare villain example can be found in the Batman foe Tally Man. The first was a white guy, while the second one introduced during the One Year Later event was a black guy. What happened to the original is never stated, though the No Man's Land novelization mentions that he was killed by Two-Face.
    • Also from Batman comics: The original Ventriloquist, Arnold Wesker (male) was killed off in One Year Later and replaced by Peyton Riley (female). The New 52 introduced yet another Ventriloquist (also female).
    • Holly Robinson, who briefly replaced Selina Kyle as Catwoman, is a lesbian.
    • The new Catwoman in Batman Beyond is a dark-skinned woman of mostly-unrevealed lineage.
    • Genevieve Valentine's run on Catwoman introduces Eiko Hasigawa, a Japanese Yakuza Princess who temporarily becomes the new Catwoman after Selina retires to run the Calabrese crime family. It's also suggested that she may be a lesbian or bisexual.
    • The original Ranger from the Batmen of All Nations was a white Australian. After his death, the mantle was passed onto Johnny Riley, an Aboriginal teen who joined Batman Incorporated under the moniker of "Dark Ranger".
    • The Robin Series provides an in-universe villainous version when Tim faces off against an assassin code-named the Rising Sun Archer and research shows him that his current foe is the granddaughter of a WWII era male assassin who used the same name.
    • The Robin legacy has zig-zagged this. Traditionally the role has been filled by white males, but at least two of those have retcons implying or explicitly stating they have other heritage:
      • Dick Grayson (retconned Romani heritage) -> Jason Peter Todd (European and Asian ancestry note ) -> Tim Drake (white male note ) -> Stephanie Brown (white woman note ) -> Damian Wayne (Chinese, European and Arab ancestry). Damian-as-Batman has also featured in a couple of Grant Morrison possible future tales - in one story he's the Retired Badass "Mr Wayne" who trains Terry McGinnis.
      • Jason (prior to Flashpoint, anyway) was indicated to be mixed race, since when he and Batman were trying to find his biological mother the unmistakably Asian Lady Shiva was one of the candidates. Dick had not yet been retconned to have Romani heritage so he inherited the role from a white guy. On the other hand Jason's first incarnation where he and his family were circus performers was unquestionably white given his red hair. Amusingly when writers keep both Jason's Asian and Dick's Romani heritage on the table this means Tim was the only non-POC male to be Robin.
      • In Future's End, the new Robin is a black teenager named Duke Thomas.
      • Duke Thomas also appears in the main continuity as part of the We Are Robin movement, a group of diverse teens who step up to help defend Gotham during a period when Bruce is dead and Damian is off Walking the Earth. Following the Waynes' respective returns, Duke is invited to become a part of the Batfamily proper by Batman, but explicitly not as a Robin; Bruce wants to try something new with his training, and so he instead becomes The Signal.
    • In Earth-2, where superheroes aged normally, African-American lawyer Charles "Charley" Bullock took on the identity of Blackwing, donning a costume deliberately reminiscent of the now-retired Batman. He might also be said to be taking up Wildcat's legacy as well, since he coincidentally met Grant as a teenager, and ended up being mentored by the older hero.
  • Blue Beetle: Ted Kord (white male) replaced by Jaime Reyes (Latino male). Before the New 52, Jaime took up the mantle after Ted's death, while in DC Rebirth, Ted stepped down from active superheroics, Jaime discovered the Blue Beetle scarab independently, and the two of them eventually joined forces.
  • Lee Walter Travis, the white male Crimson Avenger, was followed by Jill Carlyle, a black female Crimson Avenger.
  • Happens at least three times over to Doctor Fate in the New 52. The Earth-20 version is still Kent Nelson, but now he's black, the Earth 2 version is a young Egyptian man called Khalid Ben-Hassin, and the main DCU version is a young Egyptian-American man called Khalid Nassour (fitting in these last two cases, since Doctor Fate's mythology is strongly tied to Egypt). Much like the original, they're doctors (well, Ben-Hassin is. Nassour is a medical student since he's younger.). Also, there were two female Doctor Fates who succeeded the original Kent Nelson when he apparently died, one of them being his widow Inza.
  • Doctor Mid-Nite was originally Charles McNider, a white man. He was replaced by Beth Chapel, a black woman, who was later replaced by Pieter Cross, another white man. As of Doomsday Clock, Beth is back.
  • The original Element Girl was Caucasian, while her successor Element Woman is Korean American.
  • The Flash:
    • In the mainstream DC Comics continuity, Irey West (who as mentioned above, is half white and half Korean) became the new Impulse. Bart Allen, the original Impulse, was a white male. However, Irey is the daughter of Wally West, another holder of The Flash mantle.
    • In the New 52 continuity, Wally went back to being a teenager, but was Race Lifted to being half African-American. DC Rebirth retcons it so that New 52 Wally is actually the cousin of the original Wally, who'd been removed from time for a few years before making a return, and sees New 52 Wally take up his cousin's Kid Flash mantle. The Future's End tie-in to the series has a possible future where New 52 Wally has replaced Barry as the Flash as well.
    • The first Reverse-Flash, is the Caucasian Eobard Thawne. His successor is the formerly disabled Hunter Zolomon.
    • Johnny Quick, a white male hero, was replaced by Jesse Chambers, his daughter. She now fights crime while using his costume and the slightly modified moniker of Jesse Quick. She eventually changed her costumed identity to Liberty Belle, originally her mother's.
    • The Flash in Justice League Beyond is a black woman named Danica Williams.
    • A villainous example for DC: The replacement Rogues featured an African-American Captain Cold. The original white one took back the identity pretty quickly though.
  • Firestorm: Ronnie Raymond (white) replaced with Jason Rusch (black). Ronnie was eventually resurrected, and now they both share control over the composite Firestorm entity.
  • Final Crisis does this briefly. Readers are shown a number of alternate universes, one of which features black versions of Superman and Wonder Woman. The black Wonder Woman is revealed to be Nubia, Wonder Woman's largely-forgotten sister from the 1970s. Meanwhile, the black Superman is the president of the United States. (The Multiversity reveals that their Earth is one where most of the major heroes are black, with Batman as the exception.)
  • Green Arrow:
    • Green Arrow II Connor Hawke is the son of the White Green Arrow Oliver Queen and a half Black, half Korean woman. For a while his skin seemed to go back and forth from issue to issue.
    • It looks like he's gotten more white over time, and that he was darker at birth, canonically. A lot of colorists have messed it up over the years, though. It definitely does not help that his hair is dyed blonde. His coloring was fixed in Convergence.
    • In The New 52: Future's End, the new Green Arrow is Emiko Queen, Oliver's half-Japanese younger sister.
    • In the mainstream continuity, Emiko becomes the new Red Arrow after DC Rebirth.
    • Speedy: Green Arrow's white male sidekick Roy Harper changed his code name to Arsenal and later Red Arrow, and Mia Dearden, an HIV-positive, female, former teen prostitute became the new Speedy.
  • Green Lantern: In the Golden Age, Alan Scott (white male). Scott's powers were similar to, but had a different source from, the Silver Age Green Lanterns, so he was not so much "replaced" as Covered Up by Hal Jordan, who got replaced (sort of) by Guy Gardner (white) replaced with John Stewart (black) and later Kyle Rayner (originally white, later retconned to be half-Hispanic), followed by Simon Baz (Arab-American) and Jessica Cruz (neuroatypical Latina). However, the fact that the Green Lanterns are a police organization with 7200 members makes this more believable. Currently all serve as equal members of the Corps (despite at least one of them having been dead for a while, see "Spectre" below). The 2020 series Far Sector introduces Sojourner "Jo" Mullein, a black woman, as Earth's newest Green Lantern.
    • Green Lantern: Legacy centers around Tai Pham, a young Vietnamese-American boy who becomes a Green Lantern.
    • The Green Lantern Corps members also include squirrels, a robot, a planet, alien smallpox, a living math equation, and are (or were) led by blue space midgets. Having a black guy and a white guy is downright boring by comparison (a point which a black man even uses to call Jordan out on his racism back in the 70s).
    • The Ame-Comi Girls universe has a Chinese girl named Jade Yifei as the Green Lantern of Earth. She's a Race Lift of Jennifer-Lynn Hayden, Alan Scott's daughter in the main universe.
    • The New 52 reboot did something similar to Alan Scott, the Alternate Universe Green Lantern. The original Golden Age version was your average white dude; in the New 52 he's still white but now a gay man. Notably, this trope wasn't the main purpose of the change; he had a gay son who was Retgone'd in the reboot, so they made him gay instead.
    • As mentioned above, the New 52 has since introduced a fifth Earth Lantern. The new Green Lantern is an Arab American man named Simon Baz, who became a member of the most recent iteration of the Justice League of America.
      • Geoff Johns' final GL issue showed a possible future where Simon acts as a mentor to Jessica Cruz, a female, Latina Green Lantern. She appeared in the aftermath of Forever Evil, where it turns out she's not a Green Lantern, but the new host to the Power Ring of Earth-3, so she's an affirmative action legacy villain. However, she does end up becoming a Lantern at the end of Darkseid War.
    • In the world of Batman Beyond (canonised in the comic multiverse as Earth-12), the new Green Lantern is a boy from Tibet, Kai-Ro. The comic book adaptation confirms his Tibetan background and living in a monastery with his older sister. Said sister grew up to be Curare, the League of Assassins' best killer; the end of the story detailing this has her undergo the ritual that gave her the blue skin. It's not known if Kai-Ro is canon in Earth-0, the main DC comics universe, though given that Terry now more or less is, it's possible.
  • In the 1970s the Teen Titans member Mal Duncan/Herald (African-American) took the identity of the Guardian, a white Golden Age hero. Even when a clone of the original character was introduced in Jimmy Olsen as security for Project Cadmus, he called himself the Golden Guardian, letting Mal keep the original name. (Post-Crisis, none of this happened, and the clone was simply the Guardian.) In Seven Soldiers, Jake Jordan (also African-American) is given the title Manhattan Guardian by a newspaper which bought the rights to the name and costume from Cadmus.
  • The half-white, half-Latina Kendra Saunders was introduced as the new Hawkgirl in the 90s, but like many of the others on this list was eventually killed off to make way for the return of her white predecessor. It seems she has gotten the last laugh though, as she is now the Hawkgirl in the New 52.
    • Hawkman's Arch-Enemy Shadow Thief was briefly replaced by a black man. The replacement quickly ended up in Comic-Book Limbo, and the original returned to using the identity.
  • Johnny Thunder's successor, Jakeem, is black. Though this may owe more to the fact that DC seems to have a thing about black guys with electric powers.
  • Judomaster: Rip Jagger (white man) replaced with Sonia Sato (Asian woman). There was a previous Asian Judomaster in the 90s. He appeared in one issue and was never seen again.
  • Justice League and Justice League Unlimited were criticized by some fans for using John Stewart (black) rather than Kyle Rayner (white), the current GL at the time, and the one already established in the DC Animated Universe. Other fans were pleased to see John finally get some recognition, though. John's military background in the show was also carried over to the comic, where he was previously an architect.
    • Kyle Rayner did eventually appear as a background Lantern, having previously been featured in Superman: The Animated Series. Hal Jordan was relegated to a Shout-Out - his name painted on a fighter jet at an airbase - and a five minute cameo when some Time Travel shenanigans caused him to spontaneously take Stewart's place. Alan and several other Golden Age characters were used as the basis for an alternate world in one storyline.
    • The usual seventh, Aquaman, was recovering from a laughable legacy, so they needed a seventh and decided to add a second woman. Furthermore, they chose the more Hispanic-seeming (and voiced by Maria Canals Barrera) Hawkgirlnote , as opposed to the more traditional, and white, Black Canary or Zatanna. Zatanna, Black Canary and Hawkman were introduced later, and the early introduction of Hawkgirl was used to set up and clear up the Hawk-Snarl.
  • Several examples pop up in Judd Winick's Justice League: Generation Lost series. The future iteration of the Justice League features Damian Wayne (Bruce Wayne's mixed Chinese/European/Arab son) as the new Batman, an unnamed African-American woman as the new Black Canary, and a Middle-Eastern woman named Sahar Shaheen as the new Shazam. Shazam would count as a Twofer, since the original was a white male named Billy Batson.
  • The trend was parodied in the JLA Presents: Plastic Man one-shot, where two children claim that Plastic Man is lame because he was never replaced by a minority like many of the popular heroes of the 90s were.
  • The alternate future depicted in the final issue of Manhunter had two major examples. Jade, a whitenote  female superhero from the current timeline had been replaced by her brother Todd's adopted Asian daughter, while Kate Spencer's gay son Ramsey had succeeded her as the new Manhunter. As a woman, Kate herself qualifies since each of the previous bearers of the Manhunter mantle were white males.
  • Two examples in the Milestone Forever series. Curtis Metcalf passed on the Hardware identity to the female Tiffany Evans, and it was implied that Raquel Erving (Rocket) had succeeded Augustus Freeman as the new Icon.
  • Mister Miracle, Scott Free of the New Gods is a Human Alien resembling a white male and his protege Shilo Norman is a black male teen. As a bonus, Shilo Norman is Ambiguously Jewish.
  • Mister Terrific: Terry Sloane (white male) replaced by Michael Holt (black male). Though Terry had been gone for a long time when Michael came along, which probably helped produce the especially positive response Holt has gotten from readers. He got his own series in 2011's New 52 launch, something his predecessor never managed, though it didn't last long.
  • The Question: Vic Sage (white man) replaced with Renee Montoya (Hispanic gay woman, a Threefer), a Canon Immigrant from Batman: The Animated Series who had previously starred in Gotham Central. She assumed the title in 52 upon Vic's death from lung cancer. The New 52 version is back to being a white male - though thanks to having a radical new origin involving being UnPersoned, we don't know if it's Vic in some form or a new guy altogether.
  • The first three holders of The Ray identity, Langford Terrill, Ray Terrill, and Stan Silver were white, while the New 52 Ray, Lucien Gates, is Korean American. When Ray Terrill was reintroduced in DC Rebirth, he was changed from being straight to gay.
    • The sexuality change was probably due to the Series/Arrow having the Ray be gay to match up with his actor
  • Artemis, who is usually drawn looking very white but sometime is more Ambiguously Brown despite her iconic red hair, passed down the title of Shim'Tar to Akila, who has unquestionable Arabic ancestry and significantly darker skin. In the New 52 Akila is of Sub-Saharan ancestry, but she doesn't live nearly as long nor remain heroic.
  • The original Son of Vulcan from Charlton Comics was a white guy. He showed up in a 2005 DC mini-series just long enough to die and pass the mantle to a Latino kid named Miguel.
  • The Spectre: Jim Corrigan (white male) was replaced (eventually) by Hal Jordan (another white male) who was replaced by Crispus Allen (black male). Crispus was killed (this being the Spectre, that's not the end of his career, it's his origin story) by a white male who was also coincidentally named Jim Corrigan (to avoid any confusion, Hal Jordan is not a naming coincidence; the Hal who had been a Green Lantern became the Spectre after he died). The New 52 reset this so the original Jim Corrigan became the Spectre again.
  • Starman: Ted Knight (white male) replaced by Mikaal Thomas (bisexual blue alien). To an extent... Mikaal wasn't bisexual in the seventies stories where he was the Starman; that was a later retcon by James Robinson. And while Robinson later wrote Mikaal as a Justice League member, the Starman name belonged to Thom Kallor (straight white male alien) at first, so he was simply referred to as Mikaal. Once Thom left to return to the future, Mikaal began to be referred to as Starman again.
  • Stargirl: Female legacy of both Star-Spangled Kid and Starman.
  • Superman:
    • The criminal Toyman, Winslow Schott, and the heroic Japanese Toyman, Hiro Okamura, who was later revealed to be a robot constructed by Winslow. As of the New 52, Hiro was back to being the sole Toyman and an actual person again.
    • John Henry Irons, one of the four would-be Supermen in Reign of the Supermen before adopting the code name "Steel". He was probably an invocation of this trope as much as the other Supermen invoked other trends in superheroicsnote  at the time.
    • Steel's niece, Natasha, also took over the mantle for a short time and uses it in the Ame-Comi Girls series.
    • Superman often regards Supergirl as his successor, and in some continuities she takes over after her cousin gets killed or retires. In the New 52 timeline Superman asks Supergirl to protect Earth after he's gone in at least two separate instances.
    • In DC Rebirth, Lois Lane (New 52 version) gets Superman's powers and becomes Superwoman, Lana Lang gets Superman's Energy Being powers and becomes another Superwoman, and Kenan Kong, a Chinese guy from Shanghai, gets Superman's powers and becomes the China-based New Super-Man.
    • Earth 2 introduces a black Kryptonian named Val-Zod as the second Superman of that universe.
    • New Super-Man, along with introducing a Chinese Super-Man, also introduces a Chinese Bat-Man and Wonder-Woman, and a Chinese-American female Flash.
  • Tarantula is a dark example of this. The original was the heroic John Law (white man) and he was succeeded by Catalina Flores (Latino woman) who thought she was a hero, but her acting more for the thrill than for saving people, murdering criminals, feeding systematic corruption with bribes and raping Nightwing made it clear she is not.
  • Mark Richards was the third villain to call himself Tattooed Man, and was the first African-American to hold the mantle (the original two were white guys).
  • Wildcat: Ted Grant (white man) was replaced for a while by Yolanda Montez (Latina woman.) Ted returned to the role after Yolanda died but was later removed from history by the New 52 reboot. However, as of Doomsday Clock, both Ted and Yolanda are back.
  • In Young Justice (2019), Jinny Hex is the teen lesbian great-granddaughter of Jonah Hex.
  • Elseworld's Finest: Supergirl & Batgirl had future versions of Black Canary and Shazam, both of whom were black.
  • Happened by necessity in the Elseworlds comic JLA: Created Equal, where a Gendercide kills off every male on the planet. Barbara Gordon (the aforementioned Batgirl) becomes the new Green Lantern, and a black grad student named Jill Atherton becomes the new Atom after recreating Ray Palmer's size-changing technology from the notes he left behind.
  • In the alternate future depicted in JLA: Rock of Ages, the white male Aztek had been killed off by Darkseid, and his costume and codename had been passed on to a black woman known as Azteka.
  • Kingdom Come is chock full of this, as it takes place in a future where many classic white male superheroes are either dead or retired. Lian Harper (who has a white father and Asian mother) has become the new Red Hood (the original was a white male), the new Star Spangled Kid and Stripes are both black, Johnny Thunder's genie has been passed on to a black male, the new Judomaster is an Asian woman, Cyborg (a black male) has become the new Robotman, and Iris "Irey" West II (who has a white father and Asian mother, though with her blue eyes and light hair, apparently takes after her father) has become the new Kid Flash.
    • Too bad Alex Ross failed to do his research and drew both Kid Flash and Red Hood as ginger white kids.
    • Red Hood's mantle has since been taken by Jason Todd (White Male) though funny sidenote, with the New 52 reboot, he's now working alongside (as well as becoming good friends with) Roy Harper in a world where Lian doesn't exist...yet.
    • It should be mentioned that a lot of the Kingdom Come legacy characters became Canon Immigrants.
  • Wonder Woman has been temporarily replaced by the aforementioned occasionally Ambiguously Brown Artemis and in some other universes it's Diana's "twin" sister Nubia, who has Sub-Saharan features, who became Wonder Woman instead.
  • The new Reggie Long/Rorschach II introduced in Doomsday Clock is black as opposed to the original white Rorschach in Watchmen.
  • The DC Future State event is similar to the Marvel NOW! event from Marvel, with a bunch of longtime character mantles now taken over by a new, more diverse crop of characters:
    • The new Batman is Timothy "Jace" Fox, Luke Fox's brother (African-American).
    • The new Wonder Woman is a young Amazon from South America woman named Yara Flor.
    • The new Aquaman is Jackson Hyde/Kaldur'ahm (black and gay).

    Marvel Comics 
  • The third volume of Ultimate Spider-Man introduced thirteen-year-old Miles Morales, of Latino and African-American heritage, who took up the mantle of Spider-Man.
    • Similar to the Iron Man example below, in Spider-Verse, Miles and the animated Ultimate Spider-Man Peter Parker go into the world of Spider-Man (1967) to recruit that Peter Parker. When Miles unmasks at the end, that world's Peter is shocked, making animated Ultimate Peter worried that they got the racist Peter. Then, it turns out that he was surprised that Miles was a high school student, not black, and he was quite proud that someone was continuing the legacy beyond him.
    • One of Miles' enemies is a new Latino version of the Scorpion. In the Ultimate universe, the first Scorpion was an actual clone of Peter Parker, making the new guy an example of this even if there doesn't appear to be any connection as of yet.
    • In another villainous example, the second Ultimate Venom was Conrad Marcus, the African-American scientist who created the spiders that gave Peter and Miles their powers in the first place.
    • After Miles was transplanted into the main Marvel Universe, he met Tiana Toomes, an up-and-coming anti-heroine calls herself "Starling." Her grandfather and mentor is Adrian Toomes, a.k.a. Peter Parker's classic rogue, the Vulture.
    • Monica Chang, an Asian-American woman who was the holder of the Black Widow mantle before Natasha Romanoff and then retired only for the alias to be passed down to Natasha. In the Face–Heel Turn and subsequent death of Natasha Romanoff, Chang comes back at Fury's request and takes up the alias again. This is an inversion. Sort of.
    • After Monica Chang became the director of S.H.I.E.L.D., Jessica Drew succeeded her as the third Black Widow. She's the first non-heterosexual woman (she's either a lesbian or bisexual and has a crush on Kitty Pryde) to use the Black Widow identity.
    • Inverted with Tyrone Cash, the original Hulk in the Ultimate Marvel universe. It's established that Cash was originally an Afro-British scientist who taught Bruce Banner (the iconic Hulk) everything he knew, and was around years before Banner became a Hulk in his own right.
    • The newest Vision from The Ultimates is a young black man named Robert Mitchell.
  • Phyla-Vell is a half-Kree lesbian who ends up becoming the fourth Captain Marvel for a while. Then she becomes the second Quasar. She's delightfully surprised when her predecessor, Wendell, manages to come back for a bit to help her. She however has become her own heroine in Martyr before being killed off.
    • In addition, the character started out in an AU where she shared the Captain Marvel identity with her brother Genis.
    • Avril Kincaid, Phyla's successor (as Quasar, not as Captain Marvel), is also a lesbian.
  • Jim "Rhodey" Rhodes became the new Iron Man twice during periods when Tony Stark was incapacitated (first when he'd suffered a severe alcohol relapse, and then a second time when he was infected with a techno-organic virus). When Stark returned to being Iron Man again after the second incident, Rhodes kept his suit and became War Machine.
    • During the Secret Wars, Reed Richards got to see the man under the armour while repairing it. Jim asked him if he was surprised that the man under the armour was black; Reed just said that he knew that 'there was a man in there', reacting more along the lines of 'what's race got to do with anything?', being as unconcerned about the race of who was in the armor as he's always been about everyone else.
    • The Iron Man of 3030 is Rhodey Stark, Tony's African-American granddaughter.
    • After Tony Stark is rendered comatose at the conclusion of Civil War II, he is succeeded by Riri Williams - an African-American female super-genius who is all of fifteen years old. She was later spun off in her own series as Ironheart after Tony returned.
    • As for the other temporary successor, it's none other than the Roma we know as Victor Von Doom (whom has had a Heel–Face Turn along with his face fixed as a farewell gift from Reed) as the Infamous Iron Man.
  • The original Iron Patriot was Norman Osborn, a white male. The second was the above-mentioned James Rhodes, and the third is Toni Ho, who is Asian and a lesbian.
  • Psylocke is a rather complicated example:
    • Started as a white woman, but had a body swap making her an Asian woman. The Asian body has since become her most famous iteration, and some adaptations in other media have just used it without the earlier backstory (though she is born and raised in Britain) in all adaptations. The exception was the '90s X-Men cartoon, which had her in original form. Her twin brother Captain Britain remains Caucasian even in the adaptations that have her of mixed descent. Speaking of whom, before she became Psylocke, she was briefly the second Captain Britain.
    • In 2018, the body swap was reverted and Betsy returned to her original white body. However, this ended up leading to a new example: Betsy takes the identity of Captain Britain once again (and this time officially, as she was granted the Amulet of Right that powered her brother), and leads the new iteration of Excalibur. All in all, this leads to her being a bisexual woman taking the mantle of a heterosexual man. For added bonus, she's a mutant, and Brian is a human.
    • Her original Psylocke identity at the same time is taken up by Kwannon, known for being the body Betsy had swapped to. This effectively makes her a true Japanese woman taking the identity of a hero who was originally white, and not culturally Japanese. (Perhaps worth noting is the fact that, when Betsy was originally Body Swapped, she was explicitly Chinese instead of Japanese, which was a later Retcon. Making Kwannon a Japanese successor to a White/Chinese/Japanese–but–culturally–British hero.)
  • The original Wraith (an obscure Spider-Man villain) was a white male named Brian Dewolff. The second Wraith is Yuri Watanabe, a Japanese-American woman.
  • The Golden Age hero Toro was a white kid named Thomas Raymond. The modern Toro is a Latino teenager named Benito Serrano.
    • Though original Toro could turn his body into fire and fought during WWII, and the modern Toro has a Bull-like fighting form and is the legacy of a character from the Counter-Earth storylines. They're related in name only.
  • Puck of Alpha Flight was revealed to be the father of Zuzha Yu, a half-Chinese daughter who took up her dad's identity. Zuzha was eventually killed off in the pages of New Avengers, and the original Puck has since returned to using the name.
  • Playing with the trope: Ms. Marvel started off as a Distaff Counterpart of Captain Marvel but has since surpassed him in terms of screentime and popularity, and he was dead and she was a solo heroine for quite a long time. Basically, she started out as the Alternate Company Equivalent to Supergirl and developed into the Alternate Company Equivalent of Wonder Woman. Though in terms of order, she's the fifth Captain Marvel at least (the one after Phyla was some sort of doppelganger and the other is ambiguous).
    • Also done straight up with Carol as she becomes the second Captain America in the Marvel Mangaverse.
    • Played straight with her becoming the newest Captain Marvel in 2012.
    • And now with Carol as the new Captain Marvel, they've introduced a Pakistani-American teenager named Kamala Khan as the new Ms. Marvel. Also one of the few Muslim superheroes in all of comicdom. Probably one of the major reasons she was accepted so well by the fandom is that Carol Danvers only stopped using the Ms. Marvel name because she was "promoted" to Captain Marvel instead of being killed off.
    • Averted in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, where Carol is the Captain Marvel from the getgo. This trope is played straight however with the MCU adaptation of Mar-Vell, a male character, who they portrayed as a woman.
  • Marvel's second Captain Marvel, Monica Rambeau, was a black woman. Like all the Marvel Captains Marvel since Mar-Vell, she has undergone several name changes, and now operates under the name Spectrum. This provides a bit of an uncommon inversion of the trope, as she called herself Photon for a time, but the name ended up being stolen by Genis-Vell, a white male.
  • The original Red Ronin was a Humongous Mecha, while the second Red Ronin, Namie, is a life-like android that resembles a teenage Japanese girl.
  • Clint Barton had his alias of Hawkeye adopted by Kate Bishop. Barton has since returned to his old codename, but it doesn't appear that Bishop will be giving up her use of it anytime soon. As of 2015, the two most recent Hawkeye series have involved them going on adventures together.
  • Unique example with Thunderbird. The first two users of the name were Apaches from America. The most recent user is from India.
  • Ronin: Inverted Trope. Originally held by Maya Lopez, a deaf Hispanic woman, then passed on to white male (but also usually deaf) Clint Barton.
  • The character Bill Foster initially fought crime under the name Black Goliath, before eventually changing his Code Name to simply Goliath, and later, Giant-Man. Goliath and Giant-Man are two identities originated by Hank Pym.
    • Incidentally, Dr. Pym is a bit of walking backstory generator. He built the first Ultron (who self-iterated into the current Ultron, and then built several other less notable villains) and gave Wasp her powers. In addition: his Ant-Man persona has three legacy heroes (all white males, though one had a daughter who became his (differently named) successor). Pym then went around as Giant-Man (see above for the only other Giant-Man) before rebranding himself Goliath (which spawned 4 legacies: Hawkeye, Black Goliath, a (white, male) villain now called Atlus, and Black Goliath's (black) nephew. Then he had a mental breakdown(/Face–Heel Turn) and became Yellowjacket. The Yellowjacket persona spawned a black/Hispanic female legacy character. Of final note, he briefly took up his ex-wife's mantle, making him also an inversion of this trope.
    • After Pym merged with Ultron, Scott Lang gave the Giant-Man suit to a gay Indian-American man named Raz Malhotra.
  • There have been numerous people who have borne the Ghost Rider title, most of them white males. Fear Itself introduced Alejandra Jones, a Nicaraguan woman, as the next Spirit of Vengeance (though her involvement was because of a conspiracy by Adam, yes that Adam.)
    • The 2014 All-New Ghost Rider gives us yet another new Rider, this time Robbie Reyes, a Latino male. Instead of being passed the mantle, it's forced on him. Granted, there are multiple Riders and each one with their own spirit of vengeance. One awesome shot shows Spirits from across the world.
    • Before either of them was Ghost Rider 2099, a Japanese-American hacker named Kenshiro "Zero" Cochrane.
  • The original Black Panther (African male) was replaced briefly by his younger sister Shuri.
    • Prior to that, he was briefly replaced by Kasper Cole, a young man of mixed African-American and Jewish heritage. Cole later became one of several people to use the White Tiger name.
  • While not intended to replace the original Wolverine (who remained active), the original's son Daken operated with the Dark Avengers using the name Wolverine, and is half-Japanese and bisexual.
  • The first two people to use the 3-D Man identity were two white brothers in the 1950s. The identity is currently used by Delroy Garrett, a black member of the Agents of Atlas and a former member of The Avengers.
  • There have been numerous hosts for Captain Universe, with the one who joined the Marvel NOW! Avengers roster being a black woman.
  • The Korean-American genius Amadeus Cho was initially introduced as a new version of the Golden Age hero Mastermind Excello, though he usually goes by his real name. Following Secret Wars (2015), he became the new Hulk. Bruce Banner has since taken back the mantle, and Amadeus has renamed himself "Brawn."
  • The first version of Nightmask from The New Universe was a white guy named Keith Remsen. The new Nightmask introduced in the 2007 revival was a Japanese woman named Izanami Randall.
    • The newest version of Nightmask, who is native to Earth 616, is an artificial human who resembles a black man.
  • The New Mutants member Cypher was a white male, while his successor, Cipher, is a black teenage girl. The original has since come back from the dead, but there's no real issues thanks to the two heroes having entirely different abilities.
  • X-Men:
    • The original Sprite was Kitty Pryde. After Avengers vs. X-Men, a Chinese girl named Jia Jing was introduced as the new Sprite. There's no conflict though, since Kitty hasn't used the name in decades.
    • The original Angel was Warren Worthington III. During Grant Morrison's run, the title passed to Angel Salvadore, an Afro-Latina teenager. Since Warren had changed his name to Archangel at the time, there was little conflict. Warren is now back to calling himself Angel, while Angel Salvadore operates without a Code Name.
    • In Battle of the Atom, the future version of Jubilee (Chinese-American) is now the new Wolverine. Also, Billy Kaplan (Wiccan, who as mentioned below is gay and Jewish) is the new Sorcerer Supreme.
    • X-23, the Opposite-Sex Clone of Wolverine, took on Logan's mantle following Secret Wars.
  • Marvel retroactively declared that there was a black Captain America, Isaiah Bradley, who, in a situation inspired by the unethical Tuskegee Experiments, was unwittingly dosed with a flawed recreation of the Super-Soldier serum used on Steve Rogers, the original, white Captain America. Bradley would eventually escape his captors with a Captain America Shield and costume, and, realizing his body and mind were breaking down from the flawed mixture, go on one final mission to destroy Germany's Super-Soldier program. Isaiah has his own modern day legacy: his grandson Eli Bradley operates as Patriot.
    • Which is also a legacy name. The first Patriot Jeffrey Mace (white male) also substituted for the original Cap. Also retroactively. Around the time of Secret Empire, another new Patriot named Rayshaun Lucas was introduced, and, like Eli, he's a black teenager.
    • In an Alternate Universe seen in Children's Crusade, Eli has become the new Captain America. Meanwhile, The Falcon has been succeeded by his daughter Samantha, the new Bucky is an African American child named Steve (he's the son of Eli and Samantha), the new Captain Marvel is the openly-gay Teddy Altman (Hulkling, who is also half-Kree/half-Skrull, making him a rare example even outside human parameters), and the new Doctor Strange is Billy Kaplan (Wiccan), who is gay as well (incidentally, Billy and Teddy are dating). Furthermore, Billy is Scarlet Witch's son so somewhat following her footsteps while Teddy is the son of the original Mar-Vell and a Skrull Princess.
    • Kiyoshi Morales is Commander A, the Captain America of the 25th century. He's of mixed African American, Japanese, Latino and Native American ancestry, meant as a nod to the theory that most races will blend together in the future. He's also implied to be a descendant of Luke Cage. Given the name, he may be descended from Miles Morales as well.
    • During the Avengers NOW! initiative, Steve is replaced as Captain America by his former partner Sam Wilson. Wilson carries the mantle for several years (and even becomes the leader of the All-New, All-Different Avengers) before returning to his original Falcon identity after Secret Empire.
      • Interestingly, Sam would later receive his own legacy replacement in the form of Joaquin Torres, a Mexican-American teenager who became the new Falcon during the period when Sam was Captain America. Once Sam went back to using the Falcon name, Joaquin was understandably a little annoyed, but the two currently share the title (similar to Clint Barton and Kate Bishop or Peter Parker and Miles Morales).
    • In the Ultron Forever crossover, one of the temporally-displaced Avengers is Danielle Cage, the daughter of Luke Cage and Jessica Jones. She serves as her timeline's version of Captain America, using an anti-gravity version of the iconic shield (based off the short-lived magnetic feature the shield had in the 60s Avengers comics).
      • Another alternate-universe-future Danielle shows up in U.S.Avengers. This one mentions that she's fought alongside several of her alternate selves, all of whom became Cap. Though in her timeline, Steve was Cap back in the Revolutionary War.
      • Near the end of Dead Man Logan (a series set in the post-apocalyptic dystopia of Old Man Logan), that universe's version of Danielle becomes the new Thor after managing to lift the deceased Thor's hammer. The follow-up series Avengers of the Wastelands sees Danielle form a new team of Avengers, one of whom is a black teenager named Dwight, who serves as the new Ant-Man.
    • The Marvel 2099 version of Captain America is a Latina woman named Roberta Mendez. Her teammates include Tania, an African-American woman who has become the new Black Widow, and Sonny Frisco, the new Iron Man, who suffers from dwarfism. A new version of The Vision is also seen, and this one is a woman.
  • Rikki Barnes took on Steve Rogers' briefly used alias Nomad.
    • She was also initially a female version of Bucky, Cap's sidekick from the 40s.
    • Lemar Hoskins also briefly used the Bucky identity before someone pointed out that "Buck" used to be a derogatory term for black men. He quickly changed his name to Battlestar and adopted a new costume.
  • The first two holders of the Miss America identity were white women. The current holder of the title is a Latina teenager named America Chavez. Downplayed as America is her actual name, she rarely uses "Miss" in universe, and Kieron Gillen has said that she probably doesn't even know about her predecessors (she's originally from another universe).
  • The first Golden Girl was a white woman named Elizabeth Ross, while her successor was a Japanese-American girl named Gwenny-Lou Sabuki. Sabuki's two granddaughters would later carry on her legacy as the heroines Goldfire and Radiance.
  • Nova Sam Alexander is half-Latino. The Infinity Gauntlet revival from Secret Wars (2015) introduces Anwen Bakian, a young black girl, as an alternate reality Nova.
  • The original Golden Age Sun Girl was a white blonde woman. The new Sun Girl seen in the New Warriors is a biracial girl with an African-American mother.
  • Doctor Strange was temporarily succeeded as "Sorcerer Supreme" by Haitian-born Jericho Drumm, aka Brother Voodoo. It seems that this was meant partially as a response to those who saw Strange as a Mighty Whitey. The name "Doctor Strange" did not pass on because that is his real name (Stephen Strange) and title (neurosurgeon). However, Brother Voodoo is also a doctor in his own right (a psychologist) and so names himself Doctor Voodoo.
  • Marvel's relaunch of CrossGen's Sigil replaces future soldier Samandahl "Sam" Rey (white man) with Ordinary High-School Student Samantha "Sam" Rey (white woman).
  • Spider-Man:
    • Marvel's 2099 line had Miguel O'Hara as Spider-Man, half-Mexican, half-Irish.
    • Similarly, Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions introduces a new version of Spidey's nemesis Doctor Octopus for the 2099 era. The new Doc Ock is Serena Patel, an Indian-American woman.
      • It's been done to Doc Ock in the comics as well. During The Clone Saga he was killed by Kaine and replaced by a female Doctor Octopus. She was featured prominently during the storyline and fell into obscurity soon afterwards, not least because the original came back.
    • The Spider-Girl seen in Old Man Logan is Ashley Barton, the half-African American daughter of Hawkeye and granddaughter of Peter Parker.
    • In a rare villain example, the new Kingpin is black. Might double as a Shout-Out to Michael Clarke Duncan's portrayal in the 2003 Daredevil movie.
    • In the All-New, All-Different Marvel universe, while Peter is still active as Spider-Man, Hobbie Brown, the Prowler, also doubles as Spider-Man when Peter's away from New York, since Peter is now a CEO.
    • This is part of SP//dr's backstory. The mecha was originally controlled by a man, but when he died, his daughter Peni took over.
  • Combining this with Canon Immigrant, the miniseries Battle Scars introduced Marcus Johnson, whose real name was revealed to be Nick Fury, Jr., an African-American man based on the Ultimate Marvel version of Fury and son of the original Nick Fury.
  • A rare villain example would be the Iron Man foe Detroit Steel. The original was a white guy named Doug Johnson III, while the second is a mixed-race (half-white and half-Chinese) woman named Sasha Hammer. And that isn't the only legacy Sasha's a part of as her mother is the Thunderbolts enemy Justine Hammer (who herself is an example of this trope) and her father is Iron Man's archenemy, the Mandarin.
  • Speaking of Justine Hammer, she herself is part of two: She took up the identity of the Crimson Cowl, which originated with Ultron (a robot, but usually presented in a male form) and later, after the death of her father, classic Iron Man foe Justin Hammer, took over his company.
  • In a rare villain example, the original Beetle (Abe Jenkins), a former villain of Spider-Man, ended up making a Heel–Face Turn, and a newer iteration of the team, The Superior Foes of Spider-Man has Janice Lincoln, biracial (half-African American, half-Dominican) daughter of Tombstone, as the new Beetle.
  • Superior Foes of Spider-Man actually lampshades the use of this trope in comics, especially in high profile instances like The Death Of Superman. While trying to proclaim his innocence, Boomerang claims that there could be a bunch of other people using the Boomerang identity now, even a teenager or a black guy.
  • After the Asgardians became unworthy of Mjölnir, Thor's title as God of Thunder was assumed by a woman in 2014. That woman was Jane Foster. What makes her even more special is that she's stricken with cancer and becoming Thor makes her cancer worse.
  • For a while, The Punisher was thought dead, so his Mission Control Microchip recruited Latino Navy SEAL Carlos Cruz to adopt his role. Cruz was later killed off and Frank Castle returned.
    • Greg Rucka's run featured the Punisher recruiting a young woman named Rachel Cole-Alves as his Distaff Counterpart. The series ended with Frank in jail and Rachel taking his place as the new Punisher. Unfortunately, this plot point was abandoned, and Frank soon returned as the Punisher. In a case of The Bus Came Back, however, Rachel returned post-Secret Empire as one of the heroes Frank and Black Widow recruit to help take down Baron Zemo.
    • The female Punisher idea is Older Than They Think: in the 90s policewoman Lynn Michaels briefly took the Punisher mantle.
  • The Marvel 100th Anniversary Special limited series was written on the premise that each issue was a comic book published in the year 2061, providing a possible glimpse of what the Marvel Universe will look like when it reaches its one hundredth anniversary. Perhaps as an intentional nod to the growing ubiquity of this trope, the Fantastic Four issue shows that the new Human Torch is an Asian boy named Lee Minh Cam.
  • This trend is very noticeable in the announcement for the Generations event, which pairs many of the legacy characters described above with their classic counterparts through a Time Travel storyline. Ten pairings are shown in the teaser trailer. The ten classic-era characters are all white, with eight of them male and two female. Not one of the legacy characters is a white male; there are three non-white men, five white women, and two non-white women.
  • In Champions (2016), Viv is the female 'offspring' of The Vision. She's also later revealed to be a lesbian.
  • Played with in Union Jack. Joey Chapman, the current Union Jack, is as British as his predecessors, but they were both in the upper class, whereas he is working-class.
  • In the original Devil Dinosaur series by Jack Kirby, the Kid With The Remote Control was Moon-Boy, an apelike prehistoric humanoid. In Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur, that role is held by a young human girl named Lunella Lafayette.
  • In Chip Zdarsky's Daredevil, when Daredevil pleads guilty to second-degree murder and goes to jail, Elektra decides to become the new Daredevil.

    Other Comics 
  • Astro City has Cleopatra, a Wonder Woman Expy who in the present day is a dark-skinned woman. As a commentary on this trend, stories set earlier in the Astro City universe, however, show a previous Cleopatra who was a blonde Caucasian woman.
  • Women have donned the mantle of The Phantom, though so far only temporarily (the oath made by the Phantoms specifies "sons"). The 21st and current Phantom's children consists of twins, a boy and a girl, and should he ever kick the bucket (yeah, right) it has been implied that the two of them might end up sharing the duties of the Phantom.
  • In Dynamite's King Features comics, Mandrake the Magician's ally Lothar takes up the mantle of the Phantom while seeking the Phantom family's heir, becoming the first black Phantom. (The last of the Phantom family died with his heir missing. Lothar's predecessor couldn't find the heir, so he took on the Phantom mantle, and before he died, he asked Lothar to find the heir. Believing the world still needed a Phantom while he searched, Lothar decided to take on the name.) The actual heir to the Phantom legacy turns out to be a woman, Jen Harris.
  • The original Fighting Yank eventually died, and his daughter Carol decided to carry on his legacy as the Fighting Spirit. In addition to being a woman (the original Fighting Yank was obviously a man), Carol was eventually revealed to be a lesbian as well, making her a twofer.
  • During a period where Mark Grayson was unable to fulfill his duties, he was replaced in the Invincible role by his buddy Zandale Randolph. As Invincible deconstructs a number of superhero elements, replacing Mark with a black dude was likely an intentional invocation of this trope.
  • The Golden Age hero American Crusader was a white man. His modern-day successor in the Project Superpowers universe is a black man.
  • In 2000 AD, the character of Sam Slade, Robo-Hunter, was succeeded by his granddaughter, Samantha Slade.
  • The Witchblade franchise would count, since the main story revolves around an Italian-American cop named Sara Pezzini. According to Word of God, the Witchblade anime, the Witchblade Takeru manga, and the novel Witchblade: Ao no Shōjo are all considered canon in the Top Cow universe, making these an example since the three protagonists (Masane Amaha, Takeru Ibaraki, and Yuri Miyazono) are all Japanese.
    • Sara was also briefly replaced by Danielle Baptiste, a young bisexual woman.
  • The Shield originally was a man named Joe Higgins. When the comic was rebooted in 1959, the main character was changed to a man named Lancelot Strong. Later on the character changed again to Michael Barnes. The 2015 reboot stars a woman named Victoria Adams.
  • When Rebellion brought back many of the old IPC/Fleetway characters in Scream! and Misty Halloween Special 2017 and the following year's team book The Vigilant, it's revealed that Dr Sin, the Occult Detective from the early 2000 AD strip of the same name, has died, and has passed his mission on to his grandson, a black British hip-hop artist who calls himself Sin Tax. And Thunderbolt the Avenger from Buster (aka PC Mick Riley) has also died, passing his Transformation Trinket on to a female colleague, Mary Landson.
  • In Death Defying Doctor Mirage, Li Hwen Mirage, the titular character from Valiant's old The Second Life Of Doctor Mirage, has died, and the moniker is now reluctantly carried by his widow Shan Fong.

    Fan Works 
  • Amazing Fantasy
    • Izuku, a Japanese teenager, is being tutored by a universe-displaced Peter Parker to become Spider-Man.
    • Lampshaded by Miles, who doesn't think much of this, and is rather annoyed when cuts on his costume reveal this to the world and the internet makes a fuss about him being a "black Spider-Man".
  • In Ducktales: Twenty Years Later, the female Gosalyn has taken up the Darkwing Duck mantle.

  • Parodied in the above quote from The Specials. Especially funny considering James Gunn, who plays Minute Man, doesn't look even remotely like anything other than white.
  • In Catwoman (2004), African-American Patience Philips is established as the latest successor to the Catwoman name.
  • James Bond:
  • The Marvel Cinematic Universe draws on a few from the comics:
    • Captain Marvel in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is the female Carol Danvers version instead of the older character of Captain Mar-Vell. Downplayed due to the fact that in this adaptation, Mar-Vell is (a) a woman, and (b) never a superhero, but rather Carol's late mentor and a defecting Kree scientist. Interestingly, a Ms. Marvel show starring Kamala Khan and set in the MCU is in the works, so it remains to be seen how the legacy aspect will be handled since Carol never used that name in this continuity.
    • In the final minutes of Avengers: Endgame, Sam Wilson, a black man, takes up the shield and mantle of Captain America from the retired white Steve Rogers, while Valkyrie, a bisexual woman of color, becomes the new Asgardian ruler once Thor abdicates. Interestingly, Valkyrie's character progression is completely original to the films; unlike Carol as Captain Marvel or Sam as Captain America, there is no comic-book precedent for her as Thor's successor. In addition, it's implied that Morgan Stark may take up her late father's position as a Powered Armor-using hero, although she is four years old and thus a long way away from doing so.
    • The Falcon and the Winter Soldier takes one of Endgame's examples and ends up deconstructing the trope with it, in that the "Affirmative Action" part ends up complicating things immensely. The title of "Captain America" is a major national symbol. How can a black man symbolize a country that has mistreated its black citizens for hundreds of years, and continues to do so? Sam starts the series deciding that he can't, only for the government to turn around and give the identity to a white man instead. At the end of the season however, after said white guy goes off the deep end and Sam learns about the history of black super-soldiers in America and decides that it wouldn't be right to stop fighting for what's right despite all the injustices that happened to black people, he becomes Captain America instead and embraces the mantle.
    • It has been confirmed that the upcoming Thor: Love and Thunder film will adapt Jane Foster's time as Thor, though it is unknown yet what this means for the original Thor.
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse revolves around an Afro-Latino teenager named Miles Morales, who becomes the new Spider-Man after his world's Peter Parker is killed by The Kingpin.
  • One of the main characters in The Suicide Squad is Ratcatcher 2, the female successor of the original male Ratcatcher.

  • In Devils Cape, the male Doctor Camelot is replaced by his daughter Katie.
  • In the last, unfinished Biggles book, the title character was going to retire from his position in the Special Air Police and be replaced by a new character, Alexander "Minnie" Mackay, who was part Native American.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Doctor Who:
    • Brigadier Winifred Bambera (an African woman) to Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart in the story "Battlefield".
    • The revived series brought us the Brigadier's daughter, Kate, who now serves as the Doctor's contact within UNIT.
    • Invoked in-universe by the Doctor in "The Doctor's Wife" and "Death of the Doctor", who confirms the long-held fan belief that Time Lords can indeed change genders and ethnicities during a regeneration, although his incarnations are all white men as of those stories.
    • In the former episode, the Doctor mentions a friend of his named the Corsair, who was famous for changing sex in his/her regenerations, being described as a good man and a very bad girl.
    • In "Let's Kill Hitler" it's revealed that Mels, the black twenty-something childhood friend of Amy and Rory, is actually the previous incarnation of the white, middle-aged, River Song. Mels in turn regenerated from the white, seven year old Melody and was forced to grow up again after her first regeneration left her as a toddler.
    • The Master became a villainous example of this after regenerating into a female body (named Missy). Word of God states this was to test the audience's reaction prior to casting a female Doctor.
    • "Hell Bent" has a double example of this, when the Doctor shoots the commander of Gallifrey's military forces, who promptly regenerates from a white man into a black woman.
    • The Thirteenth Doctor, played by Jodie Whittaker, as of the 2017 Christmas Special.
  • In The Flash (2014), after Ronnie Raymond's Heroic Sacrifice, both the potential successors to his role as Firestorm are black. Jefferson Jackson goes on to serve more time as Firestorm than Raymond ever did, appearing in Legends of Tomorrow.
  • Stargirl (2020) revolves around the title character forming a new Justice Society of America after the originals are killed off by their archenemies. In addition to Stargirl herself (a teenage girl who uses the costume and staff of the deceased Starman), so far we have:
    • Yolanda Montez, a Latina girl who takes over the Wildcat identity from Ted Grant, a white male.
    • Beth Chapel, an African-American girl who takes over the Doctor Mid-Nite identity from Charles McNider, another white male.
    • On the villains' side, the new Fiddler is Anaya Bowin, a woman of Indian descent who is married to the original white male Fiddler.

  • A tragic but heartwarming real-life example of this occurred with the political podcast The Michael Brooks Show when the titular host passed away from a sudden health condition. The day after his passing, his sister Lisha took up the mantle as the host of the (still unchanged) show alongside its two prior hosts, Matt and David.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Bunker of Sentinels of the Multiverse, like Captain America, both inverts and plays it straight. The current, main-timeline Bunker is white. A promo card depicts the World War II-era Bunker as a black man. And an alternate-future version of the character is also black.
    • Played straight with (aheh) Legacy, whose inherited abilities are passed down only to the first child in each generation. Said firstborn has been a son for long enough that the primary Legacy, the third to bear the identity, is Paul Parsons VIII; his successor in the role is his daughter Pauline.
  • In Freedom City, Raven II was the daughter of the original male Raven, and Johnny Rocket II is the original's gay grandson. The third edition, among other changes, introduces a new Lady Liberty; while the first three were white cis women, Sonja Gutierrez is Hispanic and trans.

    Video Games 

  • In Shortpacked!, Amber created the non-stripperiffic persona of AMAZI-GIRL in order to provide an actual female superhero rolemodel, both for herself and others. When Lucy (who is black) was hired to the store, she bonded with Amber over the lack of female rolemodels in comics. Later, after Amber has left the store, a thief is in the stockroom, and Robin unveils the Amazi-Girl outfit for Lucy.
    Schtick-Shift: ...the hell do you think you are?
    Lucy: I'm the new Amazi-Girl.
    Robin: [from off-panel] psst, say it like it's a logo
    Lucy: What?
    Robin: like in comic books. say it like it's a logo
    Lucy: Robin, this isn't a comic book. You can tell because I'm a woman with agency.
    Robin: doooo eeeet
    Lucy: ...I'm the new AMAZI-GIRL?
    Robin: muy bueno
    Lucy: I said it the same way.

    Web Original 
  • LessThanThree Comics' Brat Pack had mention of the future descendants of Uncle Sam (II). Sam married the daughter of black superheroine, Talon, and their children went on to become Uncle Sam III, and Miss Liberty II (after Uncle Sam II's mother (The original Uncle Sam was his grandfather, a WWII hero, and the <3-Verse's Captain America analog, a power which continued along the family line)).
  • Parodied in this article from The Onion, which announces Marvel is making a new version of the Green Goblin...left-handed.

    Western Animation 
  • Young Justice has a meta example with Kaldur'ahm/Aqualad; however, in this continuity Garth never became Aqualad, instead going straight to his Tempest identity. The series also has Mal Duncan take on the Guardian identity after the original abandoned it, like his original comic book incarnation (see above). In this version, Mal was never Herald. We also have Jaime as the Blue Beetle, with his Caucasian forebears, Ted Kord and Dan Garrett, both mentioned.
    • In Outsiders, Kaldur becomes the second Aquaman succeding Arthur Curry.
  • Batman: The Brave and the Bold tends to use minority legacy heroes in favor of their predecessors, despite the show being primarily influenced by the Silver Age. The Jaime Reyes version of Blue Beetle, the Ryan Choi version of the Atom, and the Jason Rusch version of Firestorm are all used in major roles on the show. The only white legacy hero on the show is Dinah Lance, the second Black Canary (the first being her mother, whom she's named after), the two exceptions being the Vic Sage version of the Question rather than Renee Montoya, and B'wana Beast instead of Freedom Beast. Brave and the Bold is essentially Modern Age comics with a Silver Age flair. Note that the originals sometimes appear as well. For example, two entire Flashback episodes dealt specifically with Ted Kord (Blue Beetle II).
  • The Justice League featured in Batman Beyond has several examples of this. The new Green Lantern is a Tibetan teenager named Kai-ro and The Atom's successor is a black man known as Micron.
  • The Batman had an entirely new character as the first Clayface; a black police officer named Ethan Bennett. Something of an inverse as well since the show established Basil Karlo (who was the first Clayface in the comics) as Bennett's successor.
  • In Ultimate Spider-Man, Peter briefly utilizes the Iron Spider armor and identity before ditching it. The Iron Spider identity reappears in Season 3, where it is taken up by the Korean-American prodigy Amadeus Cho (who's presented as Peter's academic rival). Several other Spideys appear, including Miles Morales. Much like his comics counterpart, he became Spider-Man after the death of his universe's Peter Parker. The main Peter Parker is understandably very stunned by this (especially when he sees the gravestone.) He later reassures Miles, since Miles feels burdened that he could've done something sooner to save the other Peter.
  • The Legend of Korra, a Sequel Series to Avatar: The Last Airbender, has Korra as the new Avatar. This is more of a meta example—Aang was not the first Avatar, and successors are always from a different nation and often opposite gender than their immediate forebears. Aang is male and from a Tibetan Fantasy Counterpart Culture, but could pass for European in the show's art style; Korra is female, darker-skinned (being from a fantastical Eskimo Land equivalent) and bisexual.
  • In Gargoyles, the Hunters are a group of humans (eventually all part of the Canmore family) who hunt gargoyles, particularly Demona. While all the earliest one whom we've seen were male, there was a female Hunter (Fiona Canmore) as early as 1920; the modern age saw the title shared by Robyn Canmore and her two brothers.
  • In Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow, Thor's successor is his daughter, Torunn. Inverted with Pym, who becomes a male Wasp rather than succeeding his father as Giant-Man.


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