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Doting Grandparent

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Raven Baxter: [gasps] Grandma, are you psychic?
Grandma Vivian: Well, I don't know who this "Grandma" is, but Viv is.

Fictional works can happen to have a grandparent character. Nothing unusual in that.

There is the regular grandparent, who spoils the kids, plays chess in parks (grandpa), knits (grandma) and sleeps 12-plus hours a day.

Then there is the doting grandparent. S/he is a grandparent with attitude and a young spirit, as much or even more vitality than his/her grandchildren, a captivating nature that makes the children enjoy him/her as a friend, and is a counterpoint to the parents (While the parents are Serious Business the grandparents are all about fun). Played for laughs most of the time.

Note that it does not have to do with "a grandparent who spoils the children" but with a grandparent who treats the children as equals and has their friendship. Great-aunts, great-uncles and sometimes elderly cousins from one or two generations back can also qualify as this. Truth in Television as it became more common seeing grandparents under 50.


Be careful not to harm or threaten said grandchild, otherwise these kind, soft-spoken old folks might just unleash all kinds of hell on your sorry ass. They're old and lived a full life and ain't afraid of a silly thing like death, or pumping a punk full of lead, or calling upon old favors to kick your teeth in.

Compare with Doting Parent. Compare and contrast Grandparent Favoritism. Contrast with Gruesome Grandparent, as the grandparent is neglectful and/or abusive towards their grandchildren.



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  • Health Hotline: When Grandma gets a knee brace, she feels young and healthy. She even spends her time skateboarding.

    Anime and Manga 
  • Dragon Ball:
    • Son Goku is a doting grandfather to his granddaughter Pan when she's in his care, and he is seen indulging in her whims. He teaches her how to say 'gramps' and plays airplane with her when she's a baby. In Dragon Ball Super, during the Post-Moro battle victory party, Goku is paying more attention to baby Pan's antics than his own food (keep in mind that he usually prioritizes fighting and eating over everything and everyone else). Eventually, he goes on to personally train her in martial arts, becoming his second student.
    • The Ox-King is very fond of his grandsons Gohan and Goten, often buying them toys and spoiling them.
  • In Kotoura-san, Haruka has a very doting grandfather. Out of everyone in her family, he was the only one who cared about her even when her psychic abilities were discovered. He even took full custody when her mother abandoned her. However, he's also a Dirty Old Man who has fantasizes about his teenage granddaughter.
  • Mari's grandmother from Inside Mari was one of these, however, Mari's mother didn't like her mother-in-law or how close she was to Mari. When she died Mari's mother went as far as to change Mari's name in order to disassociate Mari with her grandmother.
  • Marnie from When Marnie Was There died when her granddaughter was very young but was a caring grandmother for the time they spent together. She had an estranged relationship with her own daughter due to her daughter believing she abandoned her. [[spoiler:Marnie's love Anna is a focus of the film, though Marnie is presented as Anna's age until The Reveal at the end that she's Anna's grandmother.
  • Hungramps from Yo-Kai Watch was one of these in life. He had a granddaughter who he adored however as she grew she started spending less time with him. He ended up becoming ill and died of his illness. His granddaughter had made it her aspiration to become a doctor and cure him, and even after his death, she continued her dream of becoming a doctor. Hungramps originally appeared haunting a convenience store because he was waiting to see his granddaughter again.
  • Rinne adoptive grandfather from ViVid Strike! was shown to love her as if he was his own flesh and blood back when he was alive (even if he didn't get to spend much time with her due to illness confining him to his bed), and she still loves to the present day. In fact, her personality change was brought about due to a trio of bullies keeping her from seeing him when he died.
  • Naruto: Tsunade, the fifth Hokage is the granddaughter of Hashirama Senju, the first Hokage. Hashirama reveals that since Tsunade was his first grandchild, he spoilt her rotten and was responsible for her gambling habit.
  • The Boruto anime reveals that Hiashi Hyuga, who was a borderline Abusive Parent to his eldest daughter during the first part of Naruto, has mellowed out into a loving grandparent to said daughter's children.
  • Welcome to Demon School! Iruma-kun: The three great demons are the most powerful demons of the netherworld, second only to the demon king. All three of them are extremely fond of their grandsons and spare no opportunity bragging about them. One of them, Lord Sullivan had never married and decided to adopt a human as his grandchild he could dote on. It was for this reason he bought Iruma from his parents. Not that Iruma minds because Lord Sullivan is far better than his own feckless and abusive parents.
  • Katana Maidens (Toji no Miko): Dr Friedman could be considered one to Ellen Kohagura as he is her grandfather and when she calls for a "taxi" while on the run, he brings a submarine. Also, in Episode 7 of the English Dub, there is this line "Oh, no you spoiled the surprise, silly granddaughter, but I love you anyway"

    Comic Books 
  • In Green Arrow, Oliver Queen was that to Lian Harper, daughter of his protegé Roy Harper, in the pre-New 52 continuity of the DC Universe.
  • Wonder Woman:
    • Wonder Woman (1942): The Heyday triplets' grandmother raised them after their parents' deaths and would do anything for them. The fact that she wrote her living (career criminal) son out of her will and left everything to them becomes an issue though when Joel gets out of prison and decides to kill them all.
    • Wonder Woman (1987): Ares considers himself the kind of grandparent who adores and spoils his grandchildren, it's just that Wonder Woman and he have very different values so while he does save her life on multiple occasions and they both seem to enjoy their verbal spars they're more like mortal enemies than the normal take on this trope. Ares of course loves it this way since fighting is what he lives for and values above almost all else.

    Comic Strips 
  • Dennis the Menace (US): Dennis' maternal grandfather Grampa Johnson is one of the few adults in his life who not only never gets angry with him but actually gets along well with him (the other being Mrs. Wilson, who is like a grandmother to him).
  • In The Beano's (unrelated) Dennis the Menace (UK) strip Dennis's Grandma is the only adult who Dennis respects rather than his parents and is his best adult friend. An episode of the animated series even revealed she's something of a Generation Xerox to him.
  • In Garfield, Jon Arbuckle's grandmother is a cute little old lady who listens to heavy metal, rides a motorcycle, and claims to do 100 sit-ups every morning. She also makes sure everyone has plenty to eat; needless to say, Garfield adores her. Probably best summed up in "Garfield's Thanksgiving," when Grandma is tasked with fixing Jon's Thanksgiving dinner:
    Grandma: Garfield, you're looking a little thin. Hasn't that grandson of mine been feeding you?
    Garfield: Grandma, I love you. Never leave.

    Fan Works 
  • Hetalia: Axis Powers fanfic Gankona, Unnachgiebig, Unità: Grandpa Rome is this to Italy and Romano. He came down from heaven to see Italy's marriage to Germany and Japan as well as coming down to see Romano's marriage to Spain in Testardo, Persistente.
  • In The Many Dates of Danny Fenton, regardless of who Danny chooses, their parents are very loving towards their grandchildren, even the ones who don't like Danny. For example, Phantasma's father hates Danny yet loves his grandson, Eidolonius. However, Kim's parents get along well with him while doting on their granddaughter, Annie.
  • In The Second Try sequel Aki-chan's Life, after using to the idea of suddenly having a four-years granddaughter due to time-travel, Anja considers her grandmotherly duty to spoil Aki.

     Film – Animation 
  • Anastasia: Dowager Empress Marie adores her granddaughter Anastasia. The plot is set in motion when she hears the rumor that Anastasia is still alive, ten years after her supposed death, and offers ten million rubles to whoever finds her and brings her back to her.
  • Dracula becomes one in Hotel Transylvania 2 after his grandson, Dennis, is born. He likes to call him "Denisovich" despite his human grandparents' protest and he tries to help bring out Dennis's vampire powers.

    Film - Live Action 
  • Mori Takana from 3 Ninjas is the title characters' doting grandpa who teaches them the art of ninjitsu. He even gave them their ninja nicknames "Rocky", "Colt" and "Tum Tum".
  • In ...And Your Name Is Jonah, Jonah's grandpa immediately bonds with him and likes carrying him around on his shoulder. He's one of the few people Jonah manages to form a connection with without the use of language and understands him better than his parents. It's a severe blow when he dies, especially since Jonah doesn't understand the concept of death.

  • In A Brother's Price, Jerin mentions that while his mothers sometimes talk down to him, his grandfather Alannon didn't. The grandfather also gave Jerin a very valuable piece of jewelry before his death. Alannon was a prince, and the piece of jewellery plays a role in the plot as proof of Jerin's royal ancestry.
  • From the Aunt Dimity series: Willis Sr. vis-à-vis Will and Rob. There are many references to this, including a jocular reference to the "law" that grandparents must spoil their grandchildren and, being an attorney, Willis Sr. is a stickler for obeying the law. He refurbishes the stables at Fairworth House not for his own use (he doesn't ride himself), but so that the twins will ride over for frequent visits.
  • Heidi:
    • Heidi's grandfather after his hidden heart of gold is shown. He is forced to become Heidi's guardian after both her parents died and her aunt decides she wants to work and not care for a child. He's still a physically strong man and Heidi adores him. He also becomes a great grandfather figure to Klara, Ill Girl, and Lonely Rich Kid, Heidi's friend from the city.
    • Klara's grandmother is absolutely awesome. She's respected by everybody and loves her granddaughter Klara deeply, and she really takes a strong liking to Heidi, Klara's playmate and companion. She convinces Heidi that reading is not that hard as she was lead to believe, and altogether, things are brighter for the girls when the grandmother is staying with them.
  • Averted in Vorkosigan Saga. Several of the grandparents presented (like Piotr to Miles and Ezar to Gregor) just aren't the doting type, to say the least. Cordelia and Alys are definitely the type to dote on Miles's children and Ivan's upcoming child respectively. However, they haven't been shown doing too much doting as of yet.
  • Fire & Blood:
    • Aegon the Conqueror, the man who united six out of the seven kingdoms of Westeros via a combination of dragons and fire, was said to have been an utterly doting granddad to his first grandkid.
    • Viserys I was very defensive about his daughter's children, and made it clear anyone who even dared suggesting they might've been illegitimate would lose their tongues.
  • In The Berenstain Bears, Papa's parents Gran and Gramps are this to his offspring Brother and Sister Bear. They spoil their grandchildren and emphasize fun unlike disciplinarian Mama Bear who is not above scolding her cubs for eating junk food and watching TV. On at least two occasions has if tensions rose high between him and his parents (both were about poor grades in school), Brother's strategy was to go stay at his grandparents.
  • Shtum: Georg was always cold and distant towards his son Ben, but to Ben's confusion he adores his autistic grandson Jonah. He's always talking to Jonah and taking him on walks, sharing family secrets and heirlooms that he never mentioned to Ben.

    Live Action TV 
  • Ed "Pop" Ward from Like Family is Bobby's doting grandpa who lives with his son Ed and dates 40-year-younger women. He is also a doting adopted grandpa to Keith and often helps him and Bobby to get out of trouble.
  • Hattie Banks, a recurring character from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, is Will Smith's doting adopted grandma who cheats Will in the cards game, takes him to Disneyland and embarrasses Uncle Phil. She loves the whole family but their Bel-Air lifestyle leaves the rest of them too high strung and at times resistant to her actions when she visits. Will, who was raised in a far more laid back manner in Philadelphia, gets on with her far more than the Banks part of the family because of similar fun loving personalities.
  • Vivian (never call her Grandma) from That's So Raven is Raven's doting Vivian with who shares the psychic power of foresight and helps her to take away the angst of keeping this secret. She also always pranks Cory who fails to counter-prank her due to her power.
  • Played With Ethyl Philips from Dinosaurs. While crippled in a wheelchair, she still has attitude enough to be a pain in her son-in-law Earl Sinclair's ass and is a doting grandma to all three of her grandkids. She often reads stories to Baby and they even had a special episode with Ethyl telling a fable to Baby, and when Robbie was punished by Earl into waxing the floors for an argument about neglecting house duties, Ethyl informed Robbie there is a legal way to physically fight back against his father and take control of the house.
  • Averted in Two and a Half Men. Although not being a regular grandma (she has vitality enough to live by herself and be a pain in her sons' asses), Evelyn Harper is so self-centered that even her grandson Jake can't stand her.
  • In Everybody Loves Raymond, Marie Barone often makes it unsubtly clear that Debra's greatest single function in married life to her son was to provide she, Marie, with grandchildren she can dote on and spoil rotten. Grandchildren, although she genuinely loves them, are just another weapon she uses to remind Debra of her subordinate position and failings as a home-maker. Meanwhile, Frank Barone is the opposite of this trope - as often as not the grandkids are another imposition designed to spoil his comfortable retirement. Contrast Marie to Debra's mousy and unassertive mother - she is barely there in their lives, even when staying with her daughter. Debra's mother doesn't have a clue as to how to be a grandmother.
  • Rory's grandparents on Gilmore Girls, though they are really very young as Lorelai had Rory when she was sixteen. They dote on Rory because she's a smart and sweet girl, though they sometimes treat Lorelai as their Unfavourite. Lorelai and Rory are more like sisters, so Emily and Richard are Rory's parental figures. Emily can be pushy, but Richard is a Cool Old Guy who takes great pride in his granddaughter.
  • Edna from Everwood used to be an Army nurse and still works, married her new love despite most people frown upon their mixed marriage and she rides a motorbike. She loves her two grandkids, Amy and Bright, and she's a cool female role model for Delia Brown who has lost her mother.
  • The Twilight Zone (1959): In "Long Distance Call", the extremely frail Grandma Bayles adores her grandson Billy. She gives him a toy telephone for his fifth birthday so that he will always be able to talk to her on it. She dies later that day, after mistaking Billy for her son (and his father) Chris. She begins to communicate with him over the toy phone from beyond the grave and convinces Billy to commit suicide so that they can be Together in Death. When Billy is on the brink of death after being found face down in the family pond, Chris talks to his mother over the toy phone and persuades her to let Billy live if she really loves him.
  • Young Sheldon: Connie dotes on Sheldon and is also close to her other grandchildren.

    Video Games 
  • Mae's late grandfather from Night in the Woods was this. What little we see of their relationship makes it clear he adored Mae, and he frequently indulged her love for gruesome horror stories, a love he shared. Mae obviously still misses him, though she prefers to dwell on the good parts of their relationship.
  • In Yakuza 6, Kazuma Kiryu ends up becoming this when he learns that his adoptive daughter Haruka had an infant son while he was in prison between games. When carrying him around in the world, he'll periodically have to calm the crying infant down by playing with him.

  • Lovely Lovecraft: Howard's deceased maternal grandparents were extremely close to him, encouraging his interests and forming a relationship of mutual adoration. His mother is less close to him, and she laments her inability to live up to her parents' example.
  • Erma: Osamu, is The Dreaded to a whole town of Yokai. But, to the absolute shock of everyone, he turns to be absolutely loving to his granddaughter Erma the minute he meets her.
  • Discussed in Freefall: The possibility comes up of sapient robots eventually creating yet another form of sapient life. Sawtooth optimistically expresses hope that humans will still be around when this happens, to which Florence jokes that humans, upon learning that they've become "grand creators", are likely to spoil this new species rotten.
  • Til Debt Do Us Part:
    • Yejun's step-grandmother was the only person in his new family to treat him with love and care.
    • After Yejun's daughter is born all four of her grandparents adore her and clamor to spend time with her.

    Western Animation 
  • Jasmine Lee aka Ah-Mah from The Life and Times of Juniper Lee is an old magical fighter who chose Juniper as her substitute and trains her in the role of Te Xuan Ze. She often sidekicks Juniper against magical villains. Juniper's parents don't suspect of their double life and think Jasmine is a regular grandma.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Abe Simpson is definitively a senile regular grandpa except in "Raging Abe Simpson and His Grumbling Grandson in "The Curse of the Flying Hellfish"" when Abe and Bart confront a rampaging Montgomery Burns and become close in the end. Unfortunately, this twist was forgotten in the next episodes and Abe was returned to his status quo of regular grandpa. Nevertheless, Abe treats his grandchildren better than he did with Homer.
    • Played straight in "Mother Simpson" that features the first appearance of Homer's mother Mona Simpson, a doting hippie grandma with whom Lisa relates immediately and creates a deep bond.
    • Homer himself becomes this to Bart's future children in "Holidays of Future Passed".
  • Max Tennyson from Ben 10 is a retired intergalactic cop who sidekicks his grandson Ben Tennyson, the bearer of an alien weapon called Omnitrix, in his fight against alien villains who threaten the planet Earth. Ben's parents weren't aware of their double life until the sequel series Ben 10: Alien Force.
  • In DuckTales (1987) Uncle Scrooge acts like this to the triplets Huey, Dewey, and Louie who are left to live with him by Donald Duck, who is serving in the Navy. This trope applies once the triplets were abandoned by their mother (Donald's sister and Scrooge's niece) so Donald is the only parent they had.
  • Beatrixo from Atomic Betty is a retired Galactic Guardian and often likes to bake treats for Betty whenever she visits, though they often don't turn out so good.
  • Cotton from King of the Hill is this to his grandson Bobby. Even though he hates most things, he does love Bobby and treats his grandson far better than he does his son Hank,
  • Malloy gets this treatment from Woody's mother Anita (whom he considers a grandmother) in Brickleberry as she keeps spoiling him with expensive toys such as a mini-car. When Anita is about to leave (or rather kicked out forcefully by Woody as retribution for all the abusive crap she inflicted on him such as locking him inside a closet full of birds and bees or the bicycle chain whipping), Malloy begs Anita to stay. But then Anita has some bad news...
    Anita: I don't have any more money, Malloy.
    Malloy: Choke on my balls!
  • In The Legend of Korra, Katara has a loving relationship with her grandchildren, Jinora, Ikki, Meelo, and Rohan, who refer to her as "Gran-Gran". All of the children, sans the unborn Rohan, were happy and excited to visit their grandmother in the South Pole, especially Jinora, who stated that she had been reading all about Katara's old adventures. Katara was happy to see them too, smiling enthusiastically when they were talking to her. She is also this to Korra, having overseen her training for her entire life and understanding what she really needs (even if she is her late husband reincarnated). Katara is also the person that gets Korra out of her funk when she gets poisoned.
    • Toph's reaction to Opal showing her affection (not to mention seeing her for the first time in years) is certainly a stark contrast to how she handles affection from others.
    • Zuko is also noted to be incredibly close to his grandson, Iroh II. He has a granddaughter too but they weren't able to work her into the show.
  • By the time of Steven Universe: The Movie, it's become pretty clear that White Diamond has fallen into this role towards Steven, along with Blue and Yellow as his Cool Aunts. All of them beg for him to live with them so that they could shower him with affection to the point where Steven (who is famous for being a Cuddle Bug) finds it too much. White in particular turns up the ham in order to guilt-trip when he tries getting out of it.


Video Example(s):


Young Sheldon

Connie acts as a doting grandparent to all three of her grandchildren, especially Sheldon.

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Example of:

Main / DotingGrandparent

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