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Captain Carter: We’re here from another universe... and you’re the woman I trust to have my six, including now. And there are three people you trust in the universe, and I count myself lucky enough to be one of them.
Natasha Romanoff: [lowering her gun] Well, we must be close.
Carter: I believe the term is "BFF."

When you're meeting an alternate universe version/clone/zombie/etc. of someone, you're essentially dealing with a stranger. But because of your experience with your version, you may not feel that way.

For better or for worse, some people trigger very powerful emotional reactions in others. What specifically is being triggered varies — affection, protection, disgust, mistrust. However, it's very possible for the person triggering the response to be someone other than the person who originally provoked it.

Maybe the hero is meeting an alternate-universe counterpart to his dead little sister, who became his Cynicism Catalyst. Maybe he's reluctantly making himself team up with a good-aligned clone of his arch-nemesis. Maybe he's having to shoot one of his True Companions who has succumbed to The Virus and effectively stopped being the person he knew. Depending on the case, they may say You Remind Me of X. The point is that he's still having an emotional reaction to the person because of who they "are" — even though they aren't.

In some cases, this may not have any negative effects; the recipient is similar enough to the original target that it's still the correct reaction. However, sometimes (such as if the morality of the counterpart is inverted) things may not work out so well. This may also be used as a message against Expendable Clone - for Clones Are People, Too.

Very much Truth in Television in the same manner as Replacement Goldfish, but in a more broad manner since it doesn't have to involve a deceased individual. In Real Life, the individual getting the benefit (or detriment) of your previous relationship obviously isn't a clone, but they resemble someone else you know well enough (be it in appearance, personality, behavior, etc.) that you subconsciously treat them or interpret their actions in the same way until you either realize that's what you're doing or get to know them better. And with that in mind, this trope may last a shorter amount of time (for instance, if the hero meets the Alternate Universe version of his dead sister but then has to go back to his universe).

Evil Me Scares Me is sometimes played as an inversion — a hero seeing a villainous alternate version of himself may fear that his duplicate is him in some fashion and that he's really more evil than he likes to admit.

A subtrope of Psychological Projection; the person is projecting his feelings about his own version onto the other version. Related to Unbalanced By Rival's Kid (a person being angry at the child of a rival, particularly one who looks similar), Close to Home (a set of events or a person similar to an event that happened in the past complicates the present), Loving a Shadow, That Thing Is Not My Child! (which may apply if a character doesn't still love someone after some drastic change has occurred) and Doppelgänger Replacement Love Interest (a person falls in love with a duplicate of an old Love Interest), and Reincarnation Romance. It's also the reason why the Shapeshifter Guilt Trip is sometimes effective.

Compare Have We Met Yet? when you are meeting the same person, but they haven't met you from their perspective, so as far as they are concerned you're still a stranger.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Exaggerated in Ayakashi Triangle, where Garaku (at least claims) to serve Mei's Evil Doppelgänger purely because she's a version of his lost love, even knowing she's the original's moral opposite.
    Garaku: My love is blind when it comes to Mei Hirasaka.
  • Battle Girls: Time Paradox: Ordinary school girl Yoshino "Hideyoshi" Hide finds herself in an alternate world that resembles Feudal Japan, except everybody is female. Akechi Mitsuhide and Tokugawa Ieyasu look and sound exactly like Hideyoshi's classmates Akerin and Tokunyan. Even though their personalities are completely different, Hideyoshi keeps calling them by her classmates' names and tries to treat them like her friends.
  • Case Closed has an extremely unusual example. In "Murderer, Shinichi Kudo", in an attempt to frame Shinichi Kudo, a criminal underwent plastic surgery to take on Shinichi's likeness and then put himself into a murder situation to get Shinichi convicted. However what gives away the culprit's identity; in his home a smashed mirror was found. The reason for it? He had taken on the face of a man he hated and seeing that same face in the mirror led him to smash it in anger. This guy treated the doppelganger the same way he would to the real person when said doppelganger was himself.
  • Daltanious: Played for Horror and even enforced: as Dolmen explains, clones in Helios are forced to endure the same injuries that their originals suffered to keep them exactly the same, except when the injuries are life-threatening in which case the clone's organs are given to the original. One example we see on screen is Prince Palmillion falling off his scooter and getting broken bones when he was a kid. Dolmen was immediately tortured to have the same injuries. No wonder Dolmen went crazy and became the series' Big Bad.
  • Dragon Ball:
    • Goku's reaction to fighting Copy-Vegeta seems to imply this. Even knowing this isn't really his rival, Goku just can't help enjoying the fight against this Vegeta. It helps that Copy-Vegeta completely absorbed the real Vegeta's power, personality, and memory, so Goku was pretty much fighting the real Vegeta colored purple.
    • Vegeta seems to treat fighting Goku Black as another chance to beat on Kakarot, always eagerly snatching the chance to pound his rival's doppelganger.
  • Fairy Tail:
    • Despite Erza Knightwalker being an enemy in Edolas, Lucy can't help but feel calm around her due to the former's resemblance to Erza Scarlet, at least until Knightwalker tried to toss her off a balcony.
    • Pantherlily was best friends with the Edolas version of Coco. He becomes heartbroken when he meets her Earthland counterpart who is incredibly rude and refuses to be his friend.
  • In Inuyasha, the titular Inu-Yasha had great difficulty differentiating Kikyo from her reincarnation Kagome, often referring to the latter by the name of the woman he knew. Inu-Yasha also became greatly discomforted when Kagome dressed in traditional feudal Japan clothes as it made her further remind him of Kikyo, leading Inu-Yasha to tell her to put her own weird, modern clothes back on.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh!, the "Millennium World" arc has Yami Yugi/The Pharaoh get whisked into a world resembling his past life of Ancient Egypt. There he sees that his royal subjects are all past reincarnations of many people he knows in the present, and initially has trouble seeing them any differently. For instance, his chief adviser is Shimon and the doppelganger of Yugi's grandfather, who the Pharaoh still sees as a father figure, while Priest Seto still ended up becoming a worthy rival to him of sorts.

    Audio Plays 
  • The Big Finish Stargate SG-1 Audio Play Stargate SG 1 Gift Of The Gods has the Goa'uld using a device to split off an alternate reality that is connected to the main one by the stargate. If the connection isn't broken, the feedback from the conduit will result in an Earth-Shattering Kaboom. The POV characters view the other SGC being invaded by a Jaffa army. While trying to close the gate, the other Daniel is killed and vaporized. The POV Carter eventually realizes that their reality is the temporary one. In fact, nothing outside their SGC exists. They figure out a way to close the conduit, but it would also erase their reality. Just as they decide to do it anyway, someone suggests sending Daniel to the other side with the device, since his counterpart is dead and he wouldn't experience "entropic cascade failure" (a side effect of more than one version of the same person being in the same universe). Daniel is initially reluctant, unwilling to leave his friends to just vanish into nothingness, but the others convince him to carry on their memory. At the end of the audiodrama, Daniel contemplates that only 8 hours separates him from the other Daniel, but it seems to be enough. The others then invite him to watch a hockey game with them, indicating they don't see him as a different person, and he agrees. Also, he is given the other Daniel's dog tags.

    Comic Books 
  • Back to the Future: Discussed in the "Who is Marty McFly?" arc. After realizing the truth about the alternate Martys (that they're actually androids), Doc shoots them to protect his Marty. He reassures the teen that what he's doing is Not What It Looks Like, appealing to his trust that he wouldn't hurt him or any timeline's version of him. This accidentally helps clear up Marty's existential crisis.
  • Batman:
    • In an anniversary issue, Batman is transported by the Phantom Stranger to a world without heroes and sent to prevent the murder of the Waynes, which hasn't happened there yet. Batman's investigation leads him to cross paths with that world's Commissioner Gordon, who naturally assumes the man dressed like a bat rummaging around the police department's evidence room is a criminal. Fortunately, Batman is able to talk him down by invoking this trope and telling him to trust him as the version of him in his world would've.
    • After the death of Alfred Pennyworth in Bane's take-over of Gotham, later events see Batman travel to an alternate universe where he meets a still-living version of Alfred, who helps him in memory of his own deceased Bruce Wayne. When Bruce prepares to go back to his reality, he asks the alternate Alfred to come with him, but the two ultimately agree that trying to replace "their" versions of the other with alternates wouldn't be right, even if they exchange fond farewells.
  • In the Darkwing Duck arc Crisis on Infinite Darkwings, Quiverwing Darkwing acts as an affectionate and somewhat mentorly figure to Gosalyn Prime. He used to have his own version of Gosalyn, who was his sidekick, but she died at some point prior to the arc (hence why he goes by her superhero identity).
  • The Flash: Invoked to a degree regarding Inertia, a clone of Bart Allen. After Inertia killed Bart prior to Wally West's return from the Speed Force after Infinite Crisis, and when Wally captures Inertia he acknowledges that, even though Inertia is "an irredeemable sociopath", the fact that he was a piece of Bart was the only thing that stopped Wally crossing the line and killing him outright.
  • Green Lantern: During a cross-over in Hal Jordan: Green Lantern, Hal treats Bat-Lantern pretty much the way he would Batman. He soon runs into an alternate version of his long-term love interest Carol Ferris, and they have the same strained working relationship.
  • In Marvel Team-Up- Volume 3, a story arc throughout the series involved Iron Maniac, an alternate version of Tony Stark from a world where, according to him, Reed Richards basically took over the world; based on the actions of the Reed of his world, the moment this alternate Tony encountered the Fantastic Four of Earth-616 he immediately started attacking them because, by his reasoning, he had no reason to believe they wouldn't turn out the same way "his" Reed had done.
  • Guardians of the Galaxy: At the end of Infinity Wars, an alternate version of Moondragon and Phyla-Vell wind up in the regular universe. This Moondragon is immediately treated by Drax exactly like he would regular Moondragon, his daughter, and vice versa. Come Guardians of the Galaxy (2020), the original Moondragon resurfaces, and is pretty unhappy that everyone's been treating this other, better, happier Moondragon like her. Even more so since everyone thinks she's dead, even though she isn't, and they never bothered checking.
  • Subverted in The Multiversity: Pax Americana; after Captain Atom impulsively kills his dog in an effort to comprehend how it works, he then creates an exact replica, but can't bring himself to love it because he knows it's not the same dog.
  • Secret Wars (2015): During the final incursion, which results in an Earth-Shattering Kaboom, Reed Richards watches as his family dies before they're able to get into the ark that can save them. The ark gets lost, with time standing still for everyone inside until it's later found eight years later. Upon emerging, Reed finds out that his archenemy Doctor Doom managed to save a small portion of reality with himself ruling as God-Emperor. As one of the many Take Thats Doom has orchestrated, in this new world, he is now married to Sue, with their children now also being Doom's. Though Reed is somewhat aware that this is a different Sue plucked from some random timeline/universe, it still hurts to watch her showing Doom her affection while having absolutely no idea who Reed is.
  • In What If? #19, What if The Vision of The Avengers Conquered the World? presents a scenario where Vision conquered the world by allying with supervillains, eventually becoming a Galactic Conqueror leading an army of clones of the villains against the Shi'Ar Empire. As his forces are winning, a clone of Doctor Doom promises Empress Lilandra to spare her people if she surrenders. She does, as she is aware that original Doom always kept his word. Once her army is disarmed, the clone says that was the first trait Vision had removed when he cloned Doom and kills her.
  • X-Men: X23 was abused by her creator because she was an Opposite-Sex Clone of Wolverine. He hated Wolverine because of his father's death related to the Weapon X project, and so X-23, grown from his DNA, made a good scapegoat for his frustrations with the other mutant.
  • Acknowledged to various degrees in Exiles, which features various alternate heroes travelling through the multiverse; in their first mission as a team, they nearly failed in their mission because they assumed that the 'teacher' they had to help was the local Charles Xavier, only learning after they released him from prison that this version of Xavier was a villain. This twist led to the team's decision to make Blink- who originated from the Age of Apocalypse reality- the team leader, as she would be less likely to fall victim to this as her reality was so distant from the realities of the other members that she would likely have less of an attachment to the counterparts of the heroes-turned-villains they might face.
    • The team's second mission, the one where Blink is made team leader, runs headfirst into this problem again, since they're at a version of the trial of the Phoenix. Only this time, the Phoenix really is Jean, and if they don't stop her, she will kill everyone everywhere. But they still have difficulty doing it because for all them, Blink included, Jean's their friend. Elsewhere, Nocturne treats that reality's version of Nightcrawler like a version of her dad.
    • Mimic has a harder time grasping this one, since his universe is one of the most positive universes out there. He eventually has a meltdown after one Crapsack World too many, where he tries to talk some sense into that universe's genocidal version of Namor.
    • Done the other way around during Chuck Austen's run. A version of Colossus refuses to attack the team's decidedly amoral version of Magik, even though she's trying to kill his friends and coworkers, because she's a version of his sister.

    Films — Animation 
  • The characters of My Little Pony: Equestria Girls are treated as the same as their Equestrian counterparts, the oddity of strangers inexplicably knowing about them quickly brushed aside. The exception to this is the human Twilight Sparkle in her first two appearances, with her being a Shrinking Violet that is reasonably unnerved by everyone acting as though they know her, with Sunset Shimmer blowing up on her for endangering her friends before later realizing she shouldn't have treated her as a copy of the other Twilight. This is continued in the next movie when Pony Twilight's Love Interest Flash Sentry starts crushing on her. She goes on to have a different love interest, while Sunset points out that this is a different Twilight and tells Flash that he should let go of his crush.
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse:
    • When Peter B. and Aunt May first meet, they are briefly taken aback by each other's presence due to their respective versions having recently died. Aunt May quickly notes that she's aware he isn't related to her Peter at all before Peter B. can explain the situation, much to his surprise, but notes it is still nice to see some version of her nephew alive.
    • Later on in the movie, Gwen tries to prevent this between Peter B. and the Mary Jane of Miles' dimension when the group are dressed as Spider-Man waiters. Peter B. ignores her and proceeds to profusely apologize for the circumstances that resulted in divorce back in his dimension, saying that she deserved a better man. Only to awkwardly claim that he was apologizing for his failure to restock the table with bread rolls when he realizes what he's doing.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Final Girls: Max Cartwright lost her mother Amanda to a car accident. One day, Max and her friends are sent into a slasher movie where Amanda had played Nancy, a girl who gets killed by the slasher. Although Nancy doesn't know Max, Max bonds with her and becomes obsessed with saving her, even trying to get Nancy to escape the movie with them, while some of her friends point out she isn't actually her mother. In the end, Nancy decides to sacrifice herself so Max can survive. Max begs her not to and reveals how she was played by her mother and how she wants Nancy to be her mother in the real world. Nancy tells Max to let her go and sacrifices herself, but she is able to give Max some closure.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Avengers: Endgame: Due to time-travel shenanigans, an alternate version of Gamora from shortly before Guardians of the Galaxy winds up in the present. Peter Quill mistakenly assumes it's the Gamora he's familiar with, and gets a Groin Attack for his trouble. This Gamora sticks around, returning in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 for an incredibly tense team-up with the other Guardians. Quill in particular is unable to grok that this Gamora is categorically not "his" Gamora, no matter how different she acts, but it's also shown some of the other Guardians are having similar problems.
    • Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness: Doctor Strange is understandably wary to run into an alternate version of Mordo, since the Mordo he knows is a crazed villain. This suspicion proves warranted when Mordo drugs his tea. He's also alarmed to run into an alternate version of Christine Palmer, who he has feelings for, but who has never met him. Strange is also on the receiving end when the Illuminati assume he'll act like the Strange they knew and killed, and act accordingly.
    • Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania: In The Stinger, Loki and Agent Mobius of the TVA watch a presentation by Victor Timely, a variant of Kang the Conqueror who to all appearances looks like a nerdy scientist. Mobius is slightly baffled by how unassuming he is, while Loki is flat-out terrified. This is further shown in the series in which the TVA have difficulty trusting Timely at first, and Sylvie even tries to kill him convinced that he will turn out like Kang.
  • The One: Funsch and Roedecker are dimension-hopping Cowboy Cop and By-the-Book Cop partners; always bickering, etc. Soon after Roedecker is killed, Funsch meets Roedecker's counterpart, a storekeeper who has no idea what's going on. Funsch, despite knowing that this fellow isn't "his" Roedecker, gives him a heartfelt speech, thanking him for pulling him out of his Crapsack World and being a great partner and friend. An awesome way of saying goodbye.
  • Terminator:
    • Terminator 2: Judgment Day: Sarah Connor is very wary of the T-800/"Uncle Bob" because he looks exactly like the T-800 who tried to kill her in The Terminator.
    • Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines: John Connor clearly associates the T-850 with "Uncle Bob" and gets disturbed when he isn't able to get as close a bond as he did with "Uncle Bob". The T-850 tells him his emotional attachment was the reason why the T-850 was able to kill his future self.
  • Star Man: An alien comes to Earth and takes the form of a woman's late husband. She finds herself falling for him, though she realizes that the trope is in effect.
  • Star Trek (2009): When Spock Prime meets Kirk, he greets him with "I have been, and always shall be, your friend.". Unfortunately, Kirk's confused since he and Spock aren't friends in this timeline (at least not yet). Later, Spock Prime tells his counterpart that the friendship between him and Kirk will be life-changing for them both, presumably based on his friendship with Kirk Prime.

  • The Dark Artifices: When Emma and Julian visit Thule, they immediately attach themselves to Livia, Cameron, and Diana, because they knew all of them in their universe. The three are initially taken aback, of course, since in their perspective, they're strangers (literally in Diana's case, as she never became the tutor of the Los Angeles Institute). Julian, in particular, offers to take Livia to the main universe, because she's dead there, seeing it as the second chance he's got to save her.
  • In the Stardoc novel Plague of Memory, Cherijo encounters what appears to be the reincarnation of her long-dead first husband Kao Torin, which understandably complicates her mission. It turns out to be a Hsktskt that was put through Magic Plastic Surgery using a DNA sample from Kao's corpse.
  • Shota the witch woman from the Sword of Truth series first meets the protagonist while shapeshifted into his long dead mother. Though he isn't fooled, it's difficult for him to remain angry at her in that form.
  • Star Trek Expanded Universe:
    • In the novel Engines of Destiny, Scotty's attempt to save Kirk from his death creates an alternate timeline where the Borg assimilated Earth in Star Trek: First Contact, which results in Kirk and Scotty meeting the new timeline's version of Sarek. While Sarek is revealed to retain memories of the original timeline to facilitate his trust in the two humans, Kirk explicitly muses at one point that he trusts the Sarek of this world because he realizes that, if he can trust anyone in any reality, he can trust Sarek and Spock.
  • Deconstructed in Mike Carey's novel Someone Like Me, when Liz Kendall has her body stolen by a version of herself from another reality who has spent an specified amount of time "jumping" realities where her counterparts are being murdered by her abusive husband Marc. After stealing Liz's body, Beth initially tries to be a mother to Liz's children Zac and Molly, but Beth eventually finds herself unable to connect with these children as "hers" due to various little anomalies, ranging from this Zac not liking spicy food or Molly being more talkative compared to the versions she raised.
  • In Solaris, Kris thinks he's dreaming of Harey (who's been dead for ten years at this point), and even then is a bit reluctant to kiss her, musing on whether it's cheating if she's dead and he's doing it with a vision of her. Later, as he learns of Harey's nature as a replica of his Lost Lenore, he's seriously freaked out.
  • Trapped in a Dating Sim: The World of Otome Games is Tough for Mobs: Played with. Louise Sara Rault in the Alzer Republic arc had a younger brother named Leon who became ill and died sometime after he turned five. One of her stronger memories of him is him making her a wedding ring out of paper. When she meets main character Leon Fou Bartfort, he looks and acts almost exactly like her brother as a young man, and she first becomes deeply curious about him before falling in love with him (probably helped by the fact they're not actually related).

    Live-Action TV 
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. plays this straight with two separate doppelgangers of Phil Coulson, who dies between Seasons 5 and 6.
    • Season 6 introduces Sarge, an alien who by a twisted series of coincidences became Coulson's lookalike without realizing it, along with a few of his memories. May spends part of the season desperately trying to bring out her lover's personality, but it isn't there. Sarge is NOT Coulson.
    • The end of Season 6 and into Season 7 introduces a new LMD in the image of Coulson, who shares all of the original's memories up through Season 4, with artificial ones filling in the blanks, and is a superpowered android. He thinks of himself as Coulson and acts that way. It takes a while, but eventually all of his friends and colleagues come around to viewing him as a resurrected Coulson, even May. However, notably, he and May do not resume the romantic relationship she shared with the flesh-and-blood Coulson.
  • Arrowverse:
    • Arrow:
      • Still grieving over the death of Laurel Lance, Oliver is greatly affected by the appearance of her Evil Doppelgänger Black Siren. Despite his continual denial, it's apparent he sees her as the original Laurel and a second chance to save her.
      • Detective Lance, Laurel's father, has a much stronger emotional reaction. In fact, he has an arc where he kidnaps her to try to convince her that she can be his daughter if they both believe hard enough.
      • When Oliver travels to Earth-2, he encounters doppelgängers of many of the people he knows, including his late mother, Malcolm Merlyn (who married his mother's doppelgänger and is not a villain here), Adrian Chase (the local version of the Green Arrow), and Tommy Merlyn (who is a villain). He ends up being forced to fight Tommy and tries to convince him to stop from destroying the Glades to avenge Thea's death from a drug overdose. Then Earth-2 is wiped out by an antimatter wave, and Oliver is forced to watch his mother and Tommy die again.
    • The Flash (2014):
      • This is how Team Flash reacted when Harry Wells from Earth-2 first made his presence known. Being the Alternate Self version of the man whom Eobard Thawne was impersonating made it very difficult for Team Flash to trust him, despite Harry's constant reminders that he was not Thawne.
      • Earth-3 Jay Garrick is the doppelganger of Barry Allen's father, Henry. Barry is visibly emotionally overcome trying to deal with someone who looks just like his recently murdered father. Jay later learns Barry's situation. He feels bad for Barry, but also reminds him that he is not Henry and wouldn't make a very good Replacement Goldfish.
      • This also occurs with HR Wells from Earth-19, the third Wells to be a member of Team Flash. Despite the fact that he was incompetent and unintelligent compared to his predecessors, Team Flash still accepts him as a team member. As Cisco explains, the other Wells were geniuses who they depended on, while with HR it was the inverse. So after everything that Harrison Wells had done for them, Cisco wanted "to be there for Harrison Wells."
      • In the Season 2 finale, Zoom was Dragged Off to Hell where he was subjected to a Fate Worse than Death, becoming Black Flash, a zombie-like speedster with no traces of the mind of his former self. However when Barry and Killer Frost encounter Black Flash they still call him by his old name, and in Barry's case is evidently still terrified of his former nemesis.
    • In Legends of Tomorrow, the Earth-X version of Leonard Snart, Leo, is an unrelenting do-gooder hero, which is stomach turning for his Earth-1 partner in crime Mick. Leo sees Mick as a Replacement Goldfish to his late partner Mickey, trying to help him out of his alcoholism and make him a better person, but this only seeks to infuriate Mick (especially after he learns that Mick-X died while saving a cop).
    • Crisis on Earth-X:
      • The Earth-X Version of Prometheus is the doppelganger of Oliver's dead best friend, Tommy, who died while the two were still having a fallout over Oliver being a secret vigilante. Oliver deeply wants to believe in the capacity for someone with his friend's face to change, but Prometheus, who was raised an unrepentant Nazi, uses Oliver's nostalgia and love for his friend to mock and manipulate him before deploying a cyanide capsule that forces Oliver to helplessly watch his best friend die a second time.
      • When the Earth-1 heroes get captured and sent to Earth-X for execution, Earth-X Quentin Lance expresses difficulty killing Oliver, the man with the face of the fuhrer. So he opts to have a bag put over Oliver's head to make the act easier for him.
      • Earth-X Quentin Lance also appears to be sentimental when he sees Earth-1 Sara, the doppelganger of his late daughter. He asks why someone like her was being held captive, to which Sara explains she likes both men and women. Lance mentions how Sara was just like his daughter and adds that he expunged said filth from his bloodline, having shunned her for being bisexual.
    • Superman & Lois: "The Stranger" is from an alternate universe where Superman is evil, ruled the world with an iron fist, and murdered the Stranger's wife Lois Lane. When he arrives in our universe and observes our Superman, he believes our Superman is just as evil and his heroics are just a Villain with Good Publicity act, and vows to destroy him before he can take over the world like his Superman did.
  • Battlestar Galactica (2003):
    • This proves problematic for Athena on the Galactica since she's a Cylon of the same model as Boomer, a Sleeper Agent that infiltrated the ship for over two years, committed acts of sabotage and tried at point-blank range to assassinate Commander Adama (who tries to strangle Athena as soon as he first lays eyes on her). It takes a long time for the crew to accept that she's a different individual from Boomer and has made a Heel–Face Turn.
    • Dr Baltar is particularly shocked and repulsed when he discovers how the crew of Pegasus have brutally tortured and gang-raped their Cylon prisoner Gina because she's the same model as the Cylon who seduced him on Caprica, Number Six. As he tries to help Gina recover from her ordeal, he also tries to use her as a Replacement Goldfish, with mixed success.
  • Caprica is almost entirely about this. Zoe Graystone discovered the means to generate an AI avatar of people, up to the point the avatars believe they are those people. She even creates one of herself as a beta version. She's then promptly killed in a suicide-bombing by her fanatical boyfriend. The rest of the cast then treat the avatar, Zoe-A, as if she is Zoe, resurrected, despite knowing intellectually that she isn't. Another victim of the same bombing, Tamara Adams, is later "resurrected" the same way. Her "father" treats her as if she is still the original, but her uncle and grandmother see her as a perversion of the original's legacy and actively seek to delete her.
  • Doctor Who:
    • Series 2 (2006) discusses and ultimately zig-zags this trope.
      • After the TARDIS lands in a parallel universe in "Rise of the Cybermen"/"The Age of Steel", Rose desires to see her father Pete's counterpart — who in the prime universe died when she was an infant, whereas his counterpart is still alive but never had any children. The Doctor pressingly insists, "That is not your Pete, that is a Pete" and tries to dissuade Rose (to little effect). Rose has to be dissuaded from going back to save "her mum" from death by the Doctor reminding her the doppelganger isn't her mother, and later she's horrified by her mother's counterpart's conversion into a Cyberman and afterwards needs to visit her real mother to get over it. Both the alternate versions of Rose's parents seem to subconsciously know of their relation when they interact with her, without having any conscious knowledge of who she is. Ultimately, Rose comes clean to the alternate Pete, but in contrast to his prime counterpart, he rejects her. To be fair, he was childless and had just lost his Jackie in a horrific way, leaving him shaken.
      • Mickey is likewise tempted to visit his grandmother's still-living counterpart (who in his universe died in an accident on the stairs partly due to his negligence), and he's on the verge of tears while conversing with her. This is a major factor in Mickey's decision to stay in the parallel universe at the end of the adventure.
      • In "Army of Ghosts"/"Doomsday", the Doctor seems to have changed his tune on this trope when he tries convincing the alternate Pete to enter the prime universe because there's a still-living version of Jackie there. Pete tries (and blissfully fails) to tell himself and the main Jackie that they're not each other's spouses, but maintains that he is not Rose's father. Then in the Darkest Hour for Rose, Pete saves her from falling permanently into the Blank White Void — whether he did this for Rose or for Jackie is up for debate.
    • This is explored in the two-parter "The Rebel Flesh" and "The Almost People". The Doctor comes upon a factory where employers use "flesh avatars" for dangerous work, but trouble starts when the avatars or "gangers" become sentient and start protesting their individuality to their originals. The episodes explore if the gangers should be considered real or not, with the Doctor insisting they are while the factory workers believe they are not. The Doctor exploits this using his own ganger, by switching his Identical Twin ID Tag and seeing if Amy (who knows the Doctor better than anyone else) could notice the change. Turns out she couldn't, proving the ganger and the Doctor were one and the same person. Ultimately, only one version (at most) of each person from the factory survives the story, but in two cases it's the ganger.
    • In "The Zygon Invasion", the shape-shifting Zygons specifically use this against the humans. When a squad of soldiers surround a church full of Zygons, one Zygon comes out taking the form of one of the soldiers' mother, constantly pleading to him in a heartfelt way. The soldier cannot bring himself to kill what looks like his mother, despite the sheer unlikeliness of her story of having been held prisoner, and when other Zygons emerge as the loved ones of the other soldiers, they all pick up the Idiot Ball and agree to head into the church, where the Zygons promptly slaughter them. Furthermore, the Zygon commander, Bonnie, was impersonating Clara, which is implied to be one of the reasons why the Doctor was being very forgiving to her and wanted to help her pull a Heel–Face Turn.
  • The Outer Limits (1995), "Second Soul": A man's wife becomes a donor for an alien race that needs to possess dead humans to live. The alien is not happy about his persistent interest in her.
  • Outlander: Captain Jack Randall and his descendent Frank Randall. In season 1, Claire is almost raped after she mistakes the sadistic Jack Randall for her husband Frank, Jack's much kinder and gentler descendant. When Claire returns to her own time period, she is initially skittish around Frank who is the spitting image of a man who raped, tortured, or harassed Claire and her family and friends every chance he got for the past three years.
  • In a Deleted Scene in the Red Dwarf episode "Cassandra", when Rimmer wants Kryten to be killed in his place, Kryten appeals to all the adventures they've had together. Whether this would have worked on hologram Rimmer is debatable, but the resurrected version just points out "I've only known you a week. I don't give a stuff."
  • Schmigadoon!: In season 2, Josh and Melissa can't help but react with familiarity to the Schmicagoan characters because they so strongly resemble the Schmigadoonians they befriended in season 1. Out of universe, the residents of Schmicago are played by the same actors as the residents of Schmigadoon, but with drastically different roles.
    Josh: It's the mayor. Hey, Mr. Mayor!
    Melissa: ...I don't think that's the mayor.
  • Star Trek:
    • Star Trek: The Original Series:
      • In "What Are Little Girls Made Of?", when the android Kirk calls him an interfering half-breed, Spock visibly withdraws into his Vulcan shell. Given that he soon afterwards leads a security team to look for Kirk and Chapel, he realized immediately or soon thereafter that this couldn't be his Captain, but it still hurt to have a duplicate of his best friend target one of his major insecurities.
      • In "Shore Leave", Kirk knows that the "Ruth" and "Finnegan" he meets cannot be the real deals (for one thing, Finnegan hasn't aged since the Academy), but he still enjoys indulging his emotions with each of the duplicates (having a romantic time with Ruth and whaling on Finnegan).
      • Implied in "Mirror, Mirror". Kirk shows more softness than one would expect toward the Mirror Spock, who (despite being better than Mirror Kirk) is as ruthless as one would expect from the Mirror Universe. This probably has something to do with his close relationship to his own Spock. Kirk even comments on how alike they are.
      • Another example appeared in the script of "Mirror, Mirror" and James Blish's novelization but not the episode. In this version, Mirror Chekov hits on Uhura, not Mirror Sulu, and when Uhura gets home, Chekov Prime suffers her displaced irritation, much to his confusion.
    • Star Trek: The Next Generation: In the episode "Parallels", in which Worf encounters many alternate universes, the "prime" Enterprise briefly receives a transmission from an alternate-universe version of Riker, now in command after Picard died during the events of "The Best of Both Worlds". He expresses his happiness to see Picard, saying that it's been a while.
    • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine:
      • When Jake Sisko meets the Mirror Universe counterpart of his deceased mother in "Shattered Mirror", he treats her as if she really were his mother. In return, she starts to view him as the son she never had.
      • When Bareil's Mirror Universe counterpart comes to the main universe in "Resurrection", people can't help but give him this treatment. Quark suggests exploiting this trope, which disgusts Mirror Bareil because it makes him realize that he is so much more like Quark than his counterpart.
    • In the Star Trek: Voyager episode "Deadlock", a Negative Space Wedgie splits the Voyager in two, which the two crews learn only much later. Until then, the actions aboard one Voyager create disastrous consequences on the other, resulting in the deaths of Harry Kim and the newborn Naomi Wildman. When Vidiians board the undamaged Voyager, its Janeway tells Kim to take baby Naomi and cross over to the other ship before ordering self-destruct. Thus, the Harry and Naomi from then on aren't quite the same as everyone else on the ship, but no one treats them any differently.
    • In the Star Trek: Discovery, episode "Terra Firma, Part 1", Mirror Georgiou says that Michael isn't trying to save her, but a woman who's already dead. Michael responds that Georgiou keeps pushing her away because of what happened with Mirror Michael. Defied in Part 2, when Michael says "What I feel for you belongs to you. No one else." before Georgiou steps through the Guardian of Forever.
  • Stargate SG-1:
    • After hosting the Tok'ra symbiote Jolinar in "In the Line of Duty", Samantha Carter inherits some of Jolinar's memories, which includes a romantic attraction to the Tok'ra operative Martouf, lover of Jolinar's previous host Rosha. Also inverted: Jolinar's memories complicate Sam's preexisting Unresolved Sexual Tension with the Tollan diplomat Narim, with Sam telling him she's holding off on dating until she's more sure whether she's feeling things herself or because of Jolinar.
    • "Point of View": Stargate Command is visited by a Doctor Samantha Carter and Lieutenant Kawalsky from one of the multiple Alternate Timelines where the Goa'uld attack on Earth in season one succeeded. In that universe, Sam and Jack O'Neill were married, but he was killed defending the base. She becomes attracted to and eventually kisses Jack Prime (to the chagrin of Sam Prime, who is attracted to him but hasn't done anything about it), but realizes after doing so that he's not the same Jack.
  • Stargate Atlantis: After Dr. Carson Beckett is killed by an exploding tumor (It Makes Sense in Context), the others mourn him and move on. Some time later, another Carson is found in Michael's lab. He thinks he's the original but is quickly revealed to be a clone, created by Michael. Despite this, he is quickly accepted back into the fold and few mention him being a clone after that. In fact, in the Grand Finale he actually pilots Atlantis into battle, whereas in the pilot the original Carson could barely control a single drone using the Ancient chair.
  • Supernatural:
    • In Season 12, Sam and Dean meet the Apocalypse World version of Bobby — his counterpart in the main universe was their now-deceased father figure, so it shakes the brothers to see him alive on an alternate Earth. However, because of choices made by their parents, Sam and Dean were never born on Apocalypse World, so this Bobby has no attachment to them when they first meet. That changes with little explanation in subsequent seasons, where the alternate Bobby becomes a recurring character in the main universe; much to some fans' displeasure.
    • Jack's mother dies giving birth to him, so he's always felt something was missing, having been able to communicate telepathically with his mother in utero but never getting to meet her face to face. While working a case, he and the brothers encounter a shapeshifter who works as a bereavement counselor. She is able to use the brothers' memories of Kelly to take her form and give Jack a chance to "speak" to the mother he was never able to meet. Jack is thrilled to finally be able to hug her and thank her for protecting him.
  • The Umbrella Academy (2019):
    • While in the 1960s, Diego meets a woman who looks eerily like and has the same name as the robot nanny who raised him as a child. Although he understands that she isn't his mother figure, he still reacts warmly to her, and gives her advice that Reginald isn't all that he seems.
    • Umbrella Ben was kind and was the only sibling the Umbrellas universally liked before their reunion. When they meet Sparrow Ben, they can't help but see their deceased brother in him, which rankles him. When Luther suggests that their Ben's personality might still be somewhere in him, Ben initially brushes him off.

    Video Games 
  • Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time has Crash and Coco meet an alternate universe version of Tawna, having more of an active life of adventure as a Lara Croft-esque hero (and whose versions of Crash and Coco are strongly implied to be deadnote ). They mutually treat each other like acquaintances that haven't seen each other in a while.
  • Everspace: Adam Roslin created clones of himself to rescue himself from being held hostage as a Reluctant Mad Scientist infected with a cytovirus that's slowly killing him, hoping to use a clone to to find a way to cure himself while he waits for one to arrive while in cryo-sleep. When the first clone finally makes it him, he comes to a realization that the clone is a person just as much as he's one himself, and ultimately decides to give the clone instructions on how to fix his Clone Degeneration and lets the cytovirus kill him.
  • Fate/Grand Order:
    • It's difficult for the protagonist and anyone else from Chaldea to separate the alternate, singularity-summoned Servants from the ones they know from Chaldea or even previous singularities, as they are often identical except for the immediate circumstances of the singularity. The protagonist alone has to separate their feelings for Camelot's Mordred from London's, Agartha's Dahut from Chaldea's Drake, and Shimousa's corrupted Heroic Spirit Swordmasters Shuten and Raikou from Chaldea's counterparts, hesitating on how to treat these villainous incarnations and wondering if there's anything left of the person they knew. Shimousa, in particular, focuses on this trope, as before and after the pseudo-singularity Chaldea's Servants worry about the Master's health, and several of them apologize for their Alternate Self's behavior.
    • Mostly averted in Babylonia, though played with at the end, towards Kingu, who is essentially a reanimated Enkidu with a different soul. Though calling himself Enkidu, the citizens of Uruk quickly realize he's an imposter due to him killing people in masses as an ally of the Three Goddess Alliance. Gilgamesh himself however doesn't seem bothered by his old friend being an enemy and when confronted by Kingu, he treats him as his own, insisting to others to think of Kingu as Enkidu. At the end of Babylonia after Kingu is abandoned by Tiamat and has his core ripped out, he gives the Uruk Holy Grail to him to keep himself alive with Gilgamesh offering his friendship as Kingu is effectively Enkidu's successor. Kingu touched by Gilgamesh's words, sacrifices his life to hold Tiamat at bay. Gilgamesh is saddened, yet proud as he notes that unlike the last time his old friend was going out in a blaze of glory.
    • Assassin EMIYA is an alternate version of Kiritsugu Emiya who never had a family. Irisviel, Illyasviel, and Archer EMIYA still treat him as their husband and father, which annoys him as he doesn't know them, yet despite this he finds himself shadowing and oddly protective of them in spite of himself.
    • When Erice Utsumi from Fate/Requiem shows up, she has a lot of trouble understanding that the Voyager in Chaldea is different from her Voyager, and keeps treating him as her beloved Servant. Likewise, she gets disturbed when Kijyo Koyo doesn't recognize her and has no idea who Karin is.
    • In Sima Yi's AKA Reines El-Melloi Archisorte's Interlude, Reines is attempting to hack into Chaldea's computer to better improve her spirit origin as a pseudo-servant. Her plan hinges on how the previous director was Olga-Marie Animusphere, who she was a close acquaintance with back in her world, and thus use Olga-Marie's quirks she remembers from her world to figure out the password. It doesn't work, as Chaldea's Olga-Marie had traits that distinguished her from ''Case File'' Olga-Marie thanks to growing up with an entirely different life.
    • The Sir Percival summoned by Chaldea is a different person from the Percival encountered in the British Lostbelt, who was killed and erased from existence, but Fairy Knight Lancelot still treats him like her brother.
    • It's revealed in the endgame of the Lilim Harlot event (the collaboration event between the Mobile and Arcade versions of the game) that this was the crux of whole event even happening. Hakuno Kishinami established the pact between the protagonist and Queen Draco, the former Big Bad of Arcade and a Beast, in order to save Draco's life and prevent her intended Suicide by Cop, all because she's an Alternate Self of their own former Servant Nero Claudius, and they felt obligated to help her based on that.
    • Aesc the Savior attempts to befriend the summoned version of her old friend Habetrot, who doesn't know her and her Habetrot has been erased from existence.
    • When Yamato Takeru from Fate/Samurai Remnant shows up, they attempt to reconnect with the Servants they met and often get suspicious of enemies they made. They often get confused or disappointed when the versions of the Servants from Chaldea don't recognize them.
  • Fate/Samurai Remnant: Miyamoto Iori is the adopted son of the now deceased male Miyamoto Musashi. The alternate universe female Musashi decides to help and train him, saying he looks and acts like her Iori.
  • Fire Emblem: Awakening uses this as one of its main emotional plot points. When Lucina and the other children, refugees from an alternate universe Bad Future, meet their "parents" in the game's home universe, many of the children can't help but treat them the same as their actual, now-dead parents. Some are more resistant, but because of the game's general adherence to The Power of Love, all of them end up accepting their newfound family.
  • Injustice: Gods Among Us: In a parallel universe, Superman has become a tyrant leading a Regime and Batman leads a rebellion called the Insurgency against him. In desperation, Insurgency Batman uses a device to summon heroes from the Prime universe to bolster his ranks. The Prime heroes help as best as they can, but eventually suggest that they may need to summon Prime Superman to defeat Regime Superman. Insurgency Batman adamantly refuses, saying he cannot trust any version of Superman. Prime Batman eventually has to beat him in a fight to convince him. When they summon Prime Superman, Insurgency Batman admits it is nice to see a version of Superman who is a friend again.
    • In the sequel, we find out that Prime Green Arrow has decided to stay in the Regime/Insurgency universe (his double was killed by Regime Superman prior to the original game).
  • Kingdom Hearts: The revelation of Lea having met and befriended Ventus in Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep before Roxas ever existed seems to imply that their identical appearance is what led to Axel developing a bond with Roxas as quickly as he did. Downplayed in that Roxas and Ventus are completely different, albeit interlinked, people; Roxas just looks like Ventus because of Ventus's heart residing inside Sora at the time of Roxas's 'birth', and most likely staying with Sora's body and soul when his heart was released at the end of KHI (meaning Roxas took on Ventus's appearance due to unknowingly harboring Ventus's heart within himnote ).
    Lea: Way back when I was a kid, I met this other weird kid. Somehow we became fast friends. Never saw him again—nearly forgot about him, too. Then, I met Roxas. Couldn't believe it. The two of 'em were identical. Oh, I didn't tell Roxas. Didn't want him to go vanishing on me, too.
  • Legacy of the Void brings back Fenix (who was Killed Off for Real in Brood War) to the joy of Artanis, who fought alongside him then. Unfortunately, it turns out this is a robotic copy of Fenix from before the Brood War (taken via Brain Uploading between his injuries and his return as a Dragoon in the original StarCraft), meaning there's none of his Character Development or Odd Friendship with Raynor. Eventually the robot-Fenix takes on a new name to get out of his original's shadow and become his own character rather than what everyone expected of him.
  • In Life Is Strange, Max Caulfield creates an alternate universe when she prevents the father of her best friend, Chloe Price, from dying in a car accident. The Butterfly Effect leads to Alternate!Chloe getting into a car accident herself; it leaves her paralyzed and under constant supervision. Alt!Max hadn't seen Alt!Chloe in years due to a move to Seattle, but the original Max had the benefit of having begun to catch up with her Chloe—she was nearly unable to make a choice when Alt!Chloe, realizing that her parents had paid millions of dollars for her upkeep, requested that Max help her kill herself with a morphine overdose.
  • Love of Magic: In the original timeline, Owyn has been Emily's lover for almost five months and married to her for four months. In the Alternate Timeline, he died almost five months ago after knowing Emily for less than two months. He's still completely in love with her, while she views him as a loose cannon horndog who was cheating on his wife with Bella and Molly. When he tries to kiss her after being back for less than a week, she slaps him.
  • Resident Evil 6: Ada's doppelgänger, Carla Radames, gets the same treatment from both men who know the original Ada.
    • Derek Simmons, the man that turned her into a clone of Ada, did so because he is obsessively in love with Ada. Because he no longer is in contact with Ada, he expresses his feelings on the doppelgänger.
    • Leon S. Kennedy is also in love with Ada and highly protective of her, and that protective instinct extends to her doppelgänger, to the point he even pulls a gun on his allies to prevent her from being killed.
  • Sword Art Online:
    • In Hollow Fragment, the video game adaptation of the series, Kirito encounters a Hollow Data version of Sachi, his deceased first love who he failed to save. Although suspecting she's not real, Kirito is hellbent on protecting her at all costs so she won't die again. Eventually Sachi reveals she is indeed not the real Sachi. She also remembers the words the real Sachi never got to say to Kirito, which leaves him distraught and shaken, but also giving him closure.
    • In Hollow Realization, Kirito and Asuna encounter Kizmel, a Dark Elf NPC with unusually-developed Artificial Intelligence they befriended back in Aincrad, only to discover this version of her is just a copy created by Sword Art Origin (the game itself uses many of the assets and data of the original SAO as a basis). Despite this, neither of them can bring themselves to treat her as just another NPC, further compounded by how this Kizmel seems to share the old one's strangely-developed AI, and grow to befriend her all over again. When Kizmel eventually sacrifices herself to save them from a petrifying curse, they chose to use an item necessary for their current quest to revive her and eventually they recruit her into their group to have more adventures.
    • Accel World VS Sword Art Online: Millennium Twilight, due to the time travel shenanigans of the game and the fact the game continuity is an Alternate Timeline to the canon continuity, Kirito ends up meeting a version of Eugeo from another timeline (who is implied to be the canon version). Upon seeing Kirito, Eugeo mistakes him for his Kirito and tries to get him to remember, only to be disappointed that this Kirito has no memories of their time togethernote . However after having a friendly duel with Kirito to test him, Eugeo realizes that while this is a different Kirito, it is still Kirito who fights the exact same way. He then takes up on Kirito's offer to hang out and party with him until he's able to return to his own timeline.
  • The Witcher 3 features the doppeler Du-Du who can take on the form of anyone he pleases. In a time where anything not 100% mundane can lead to being burned at the stake, Du-Du tends to mimic people who are either very esteemed or very feared. This nearly gets him killed when he chooses to shapeshift into Whoreson Jr, one of the city's underbosses. Ciri, a ridiculously overpowered half-elf, and her father-figure, protagonist and renowned witcher, Geralt, nearly murder him as Whoreson, Jr. tried to kill Ciri the last time the two crossed paths. Du-Du is forced to reveal his true form to avoid being murdered by his own friends.

  • El Goonish Shive:
    • Tedd thinks of Ellen the same way he thinks of Elliot: as a friend he's known since childhood. Ellen makes it clear that while she does want to be friends, she doesn't at all share that sentiment.
    • And vice versa, Ellen once completely bewildered Tedd by giving him, with no context, the affirmation she needed to give his "Second Life" counterpart.
  • In Homestuck, Dave spend much of the Intermission being very anxious/nervous about meeting Dirk, an alternate universe version of his "older brother" who raised him. His nervousness reflects his insecurity and fear towards his enigmatic and abusive "older brother", and Dave harbors similar feelings towards the alternate universe version, even though he is the same age as Dave and has none of the same history. When they ultimately meet, Dave uses Dirk to work out his issues with the older version, specifically his use of irony to pretend that he wasn't in a deeply unhealthy relationship.
  • Zigzagged in Kevin & Kell, initially George is the only person who knows human-world Danielle isn't Domain's Danielle inexplicably not dead, because he doesn't have the same (literal) spark with her. As he gets to know her, however, he sees more of the original Danielle in her, until they begin a relationship. Parodied with Danielle and her counterpart's mother: Dorothy doesn't believe the story and thinks this is "her" Danielle, while Danielle claims to see this as a fresh start following her difficult relationship with human-world Dorothy, but falls into the same patterns even while explaining this. Eventually things reach the point where basically everyone knows Danielle's origins (especially after Francis is born) and don't care. (Danielle herself thinks she was sent to Domain to "balance out" her counterpart's death.)

    Web Original 
  • Critical Role: When the Mighty Nein try to revive their friend Mollymauk, they succeed... but fail to recover his memory. Kingsley, as he dubs himself, quickly decides that he and Molly are seperate people, even though they both inhabited the same body. The rest of the Mighty Nein try their best to let Kingsley decide who he wants to be and not expect him to be the person they knew, but he definitely notices them struggling, and strongly dislikes being given the "Molly look". Taliesin later clarifies that of the reasons Kingsley enjoys visiting Caduceus so much is because he and Essek are the only other members of the Nein who never personally met Molly.
  • In the online Whoniverse audio story "Shadow of a Doubt", Benny Summerfield meets Sister of Mine, the Creepy Child with the balloon from the TV episodes "Human Nature" and "The Family of Blood", and blames her for the actions of Aphasia, the Creepy Child with the balloon from the Doctor Who New Adventures novel Human Nature. The story seems to imply she's not entirely wrong to do so.

    Western Animation 
  • In the Darkwing Duck episode "Life, the Negaverse, and Everything", Darkwing finds himself in an alternate universe. He immediately becomes as fiercely protective of Nega-Gosalyn as he is of his own.
  • In the Justice League episode "A Better World", the Justice Lord version of Batman panics when Flash fakes flatlining by speeding up his heart rate, because the Justice Lord universe's version of Flash was killed by Lex Luthor, prompting the team's Start of Darkness.
  • Kaeloo: Mr. Cat treats alternate versions of the people he knows from alternate universes the same way he treats the ones from his universe, e.g. flirting with Kaeloo, yelling at Stumpy, and beating Quack Quack up.
  • In Phineas and Ferb The Movie: Across the 2nd Dimension, the Phineas and Ferb from the second dimension get really excited to see the first dimension's Perry, hugging him for a few more seconds even after finding out he's not their Perry, who'd disappeared ages ago.
  • Rick and Morty plays with this regarding Rick's family (his grandkids Morty and Summer, daughter Beth, and son-in-law Jerry):
    • Rick mostly plays it straight early on by way of his apathy and relatively surface-level love for them; since he knows there are infinite copies of all of his family members, it makes it harder for him to care about individual versions of them and get attached. He abandons the series' original Beth, Summer, and Jerry after he "Cronenbergs" their world in "Rick Potion #9", takes only Morty with him to move to a new dimension, and treats the new versions exactly the same. What's more, we learn in later seasons that none of them are his "original" family anyway; the Beth of his universe died as a child, along with his wife, so he never even had a native Morty or Summer to begin with.
    • On the other hand, Rick ends up subverting this with the "new" versions of his other family members he's had since thennote  for the rest of the show's run, thanks to his Character Development kicking in. By now, he's become attached to these specific versions of Morty (the only one who's stayed the same the whole time besides Rick himself), Summer, Beth, and Jerry, meaning the doppelgangers actually get better sentiments than the originals did.
    • This is outright enforced with the two Beths. When Beth asks Rick in "The ABC's of Beth" to choose whether he wants her to stay in his life or leave the family to go on space adventures and "find herself", rather than making a choice or outright refusing to choose for her, Rick just runs away from the decision and clones her, having one of them stay and one leave, which isn't revealed until the next season. However, presumably in order to avoid anyone treating one or the other as less of a person, Rick made it impossible for even himself to know who is the clone and who is the original, then erased his memories of doing this, so none of the characters know which is which. However, they quickly realize none of them care, and while the relationships that Rick, Morty, and Summer have with the two Beths is as different as the two women themselves have become, they still love both of them and consider both to be their daughter/mom.
  • Sonic Prime: When Sonic encounters the various versions of his friends in the Shatterverses, he tends to treat them the same as he would the people he knew from his world, even though none of them know him and have all lived very different lives than their counterparts among Sonic's friends. Three of the most plot-relevant examples:
    • Thorn Rose is a variant of Amy with all her love for nature and hammer-swinging aggression, but none of her compassion. When the other inhabitants from her universe started damaging the ecosystem even slightly, she decided to protect it at any cost. Despite all this, Sonic insists "Amy has to be in there somewhere" and can't bring himself to fight back against her, and spends the better part of two episodes trying to get through to someone who isn't there. Unlike the below examples, this treatment pays off, as Sonic does convince her to make a Heel–Face Turn, with some help from Amy's own advice. However, Thorn is still far more of a Jerk with a Heart of Gold than Prime Amy's Beware the Nice Ones.
    • Knuckles the Dread, far from being the grouchy but honorable Knuckles that Sonic knows, is ultimately a greedy, honorless pirate who will sacrifice anything and anyone, including his crew, to obtain the treasure he views as rightfully his, but Sonic remains blind to the hints until the echidna finally turns on him, and even then keeps desperately trying to appeal to morals that Knuckles possesses but Dread completely lacks.
    • Nine is a cynical loner as a result of the relentless bullying he suffered and had no Sonic to save him from. Sonic treating him with genuine kindness as though they had the same history and best-friend/surrogate-brothers relationship as he has with Tails actually starts cracking his shell a bit, giving him a taste of a positive relationship he'd never had before, and he begins to see Sonic as his Only Friend... but when the two reach an impasse over their fundamentally different goals for what to do with the repaired Paradox Prism, and Nine realizes that Sonic was at least partially projecting his feelings toward Tails onto him and taking it for granted that he would come to see things Sonic's way like Tails would, he furiously calls him out on it and abandons him.
  • The third animated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series had this happen during its final crossover with the first one, when the former dimension's Karai encountered the latter dimension's Shredder. Karai's version of Shredder forced her to go through much hardship and trauma as her parent, so her understandable immediate reaction to seeing the much more relatively harmless 1987 Shredder is Kill-on-Sight.
  • What If…? (2021) has a couple examples in the first-season finale:
    • Captain Carter is able to gain the trust of the Ultronverse Natasha by invoking her friendship with her universe's Natasha, and cites some bits of personal information as proof.
    • When the Watcher sends Ultronverse Natasaha to the universe from "What If... The World Lost Its Mightiest Heroes?", Nick Fury recognizes that she isn't the (now deceased) Natasha he knew, but has a feeling that they shared the same spirit. It helps that the Ultronverse Natasha just saved him from being brainwashed by Loki.
  • Once Aquaman of Young Justice (2010) learns the man who "thinks" he's the original Orm is in fact a clone of his brother, Aquaman continues to treat the clone as if they are brothers.

    Real Life 
  • A large part of the shock value in Playing Against Type relies on the audience's familiarity with the other characters the actor has played.
  • This was specifically invoked by Sergio Leone to convince Henry Fonda to sign on to Once Upon a Time in the West as the vile murderer Frank after a career of playing straight heroes.
    Leone: Picture this: the camera shows a gunman from the waist down pulling his gun and shooting a running child. The camera tilts up to the gunman's face and... it's Henry Fonda.


Video Example(s):


Peter and Jackie Tyler

Two universes: one where Pete died, another where Jackie died. Both still deeply love one-another even though they are from separate realities.

How well does it match the trope?

4.83 (12 votes)

Example of:

Main / DoppelgangerGetsSameSentiment

Media sources: