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Future Foil

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What will you be like in five years? Ten? Twenty? A hundred, if you last that long? Chances are you'll have seen different sides of life, witnessed multiple worldview-shattering events, and met countless new friends and enemies. If it weren't for your name, you could be easily mistaken to be a new person.

In stories, this trope concerns the time the audience is given the chance to see the future of a setting and future versions of different characters, who will almost certainly contrast their past selves in several different ways. This view can be obtained through Time Travel, a Flash Forward, or a Time Skip. This is a Super-Trope to Future Badass, Future Me Scares Me, and Future Loser. I Hate Past Me and Former Teen Rebel may also be involved.


Amnesiac Dissonance is related, where someone becomes a different person in the future because of amnesia (or someone is revealed to be different in the past because of amnesia). Compare Character Development, Characterization Marches On


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     Anime & Manga 

  • In the Turn of the Millennium version of Teen Titans (the one made by Geoff Johns), the regular team found themselves with their obscure future versions called "Tomorrow Titans", in which Superboy is the new Superman, Robin (Tim Drake) is the new Batman, Wonder Girl is the new Wonder Woman and Kid Flash (Bart Allen) is the new The Flash (before he briefly took the mantle a year after Wally West "died" in the Infinite Crisis), and also there are grown-up versions of Raven and Beast Boy. Sadly none of them were on the good side as they became Darker and Edgier versions of them in a Bad Future.
  • One are of Black Panther had T'Challa dealing with an untreatable, progressive brain injury from repeated head trauma that'd eventually kill him after eroding his mind. He meets himself from the future where he is a jovial goofball compared to his present day stoic self from it.

     Film - Animated 
  • In Meet the Robinsons, Lewis is a socially marginalized orphan and a struggling inventor. His future self, Cornelius Robinson, is a world-famous orphan that has formed a very large and supportive family.

     Live-Action TV 
  • In The Flash (2014), Barry Allen/The Flash is a warm-hearted superhero-in-progress. He meets two, very different versions of himself in Season 3. One has become a depressed, solitary Jaded Washout after the death of Iris. The other is Savitar, a megalomaniac narcissist with a serious case of A God Am I.

     Western Animation 
  • Ben 10. Ben Tennyson was a Bratty Half-Pint Jerk with a Heart of Gold before becoming a slightly more mature, but carefree and friendly teenager. In the very distant future, Ben 10,000 is serious, distant, and has No Sense of Humor.
  • In a time travel episode of Justice League, Batman (along with some others) travels into the Bad Future and meets his elderly self from Batman Beyond, who is appalled by how "green" he once was. The two of them proceed to pull a Good Cop/Bad Cop on a crook, with the younger Bruce playing the good one, the weirdness of which is immediately lampshaded by Static.
  • Futurama: In Bender's Big Score, Philip J. Fry (a rather immature fool) meets his future self, an older man going by the alias of "Lars Filmore" who is considerably wiser than his younger self.

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