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Humanoid Aliens
aka: Humanoid Alien

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So close, and yet so far...
"Subject's anatomy suggests a highly developed species of analogous physical durability to mankind. Physical structure, general organic processes and reproductive anatomy all show remarkable similarities. Is this racial parallelism purely coincidental?"
An Imperial Scholar's research notes on a Tau subject, Xenology

There are Human Aliens which are indistinguishable from humans (at least on the outside appearance). Then there are Rubber-Forehead Aliens, which look like humans but with some minor differences.

Then there are Humanoid Aliens that have the general shape of a human, but definitely look nothing like us. Be it a different number of fingers, different skin, feathers, whatever. Only similarity they need is one head, two arms, two legs, and a generally upright stance, tail and/or wings optional. Any further deviation from the humanoid form is likely to result in Starfish Aliens.

Like Human Aliens and Rubber-Forehead Aliens, the prevalence of this trope — in live-action TV in particular, though also in movies and comics and other primarily visual media — involves Acceptable Breaks from Reality through and through. It has a lot to do with the need to create something that human actors can comfortably portray (without going way overbudget with CGI, that is), that human artists can conveniently and quickly draw, and that human viewers/readers can intuitively empathize with. It also helps that these aliens tend to stay farther away from the Uncanny Valley than more human-looking aliens, and are thus less frightening. The point is: realism is hardly ever the author's intention when this trope comes into play, which leads to it often being eschewed by Hard Science Fiction authors whenever possible.

That's not to say there aren't those who defend the scientific merit of this trope, however. Many cite convergent evolution — the theory that similar environments lead to the development of at least vaguely similar anatomies. Now, admittedly, it is true that the basic humanoid shape of two walking appendages topped off by an upright center of mass, then a pair of manipulating appendages, and finally a head equipped with a mouth, eyes, ears, and a nose isn't a particularly hard one to evolve. You just grab a non-human creaturenote  and twist it into an upright shape. But even then, it is a bit of a stretch to expect such alien humanoids to share the same proportions and skeletal structure as a human — to not be too thin or too short, to not have backwards-bending knees, and so on. Still, something else that may be used to justify this trope is Intelligent Design.note  While this would not result in nearly everyone sharing a body plan like in most settings that use this trope, it is still true that if it can happen on Earth then it can happen elsewhere, so a prospective writer trying to stick to hard science fiction can still have one or two Humanoid Aliens without having to worry about filing for an Artistic License.

Contrast Our Humans Are Different, which is for when it's the humans in-story who have the strange characteristics, but they are still called humans anyway.

May overlap with Beast Man or Intelligent Gerbils. Ursine Aliens often fall under this, since bears can appear very humanoid by themselves.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Dragon Ball Z: The Saiyans are Human Aliens, as they're visually indistinguishable from humans outside of having tails and can even have children with humans. Aside from them, the vast majority of aliens are in this category. Though most are possessed of unusual height, horns, elongated heads, a tail, etc., a handful are simply human forms with the only deviation being unnaturally-colored skin - Jeice and Sauzaa come to mind. It's been revealed that Jeice and Salza were actually both members of the same species. Like humans they come in multiple skin colors; unlike humans those colors are red and blue.
  • In Captain Earth, what we mostly see of the Kiltgangs when not in their human avatar bodies, is their true forms as Humongous Mechas. However, they simultaneously also have a second form, a sort of piloting form that is officially called "Gig Mode", in which they all look vaguely like their avatar bodies, only incorporating their character colors more and adding some details that reflect their outer mecha bodies and abilities, like armour plates, hats (or some other forms of head additions) and the like. The anime underlines this otherness of their forms by using colored outlines for them. However, it is unknown whether these forms could or do exist outside of their mecha bodies as well.
  • The main alien characters from Interstella 5555 belong to a species that looks almost exactly like humans, with the exception of having blue skin and yellow blood. When the Big Bad abducts the alien band, brainwashes them, and changes their physical appearance, all he needs to do to make them pass for humans is repaint their skin and hair and give them different clothes. The "Veridis Quo" sequence shows some of his previous victims, who were other aliens of this nature, albeit not as human-looking as the protagonists; they went through different, not-fully-seen processes to disguise them as humans.

    Asian Animation 
  • Happy Heroes: A lot of the monsters that Big M. hires to go after the Supermen have human-like body structures, but with plenty of features to distinguish them from the Human Aliens on Planet Xing and Planet Gray. Take, for example, Scary Monster with her pink fur and the aptly-named Fish Monster.
  • Lamput: In "Alien Again", the blue-gray-skinned aliens in white clothing look remarkably like the scientists after Lamput, leading to one assuming Slim Doc should be with them. However, the extraterrestrials also have only one eye, as well as an antenna on their heads.

    Comic Books 
  • Most aliens in Buck Godot: Zap Gun for Hire fit this trope, although quite many are Starfish Aliens or animal-like (Rubber-Forehead Aliens have appeared a few times, but not very often). Some aliens don't quite fit this trope, like the Prime Movers who look like Rubber-Forehead Aliens from the waist up, but have several short stubby legs, or the Klegdixal, who have a humanoid body shape but seem to lack legs (or any facial features except eyes, for that matter).
  • Dan In Space: The Lorkis are humanoid in general body type, but are shorter, have grey skin, curved horns on their heads, and their eyes bunched together in two small groups of five-to-six eyes on both sides of their faces.
  • Invasion: The Dominators are relatively humanoid, besides their lack of hair, lack of lips, pointed ears, pointed teeth, stretched features and odd skin tones.
  • Warlord of Mars:
    • The Green Martians are exceptionally tall, have six-limbs and tusked mouths and ears on their forehead that look like dish antennae. They are easily the most inhuman of all other sentient people in Barsoom, who look just like humans with exotic skin colors. Justified by the fact that the Green People were the end result of crossbreeding between white apes, apts and Red Martians.
    • Warriors of Mars has the Thithers, who are even more monstrous than the Green Martians, except they are red-skinned and vaguely crustacean. The one thing keeping them from the next level is that they are bipeds who walk on their legs and have a head and body like humans.
    • The Kahori in the comic relaunch are scaled, grey-skinned humanoids who walk on hind legs.
  • In Gilgamesh the Immortal, when they are not Human Aliens, the aliens that Gilgamesh encounters are of this type.
  • Superman:
    • In "War World", Superman and Supergirl learn about two different alien races: the Largas and the Warzoon. The former are tall, human-like aliens with white-silvery skin, long fingers and faceless heads. The latter are red-skinned, fanged humanoid aliens with ape-like flat faces, huge, bulging, blank yellow eyes and four-fingered hands.
    • In "The Leper from Krypton", the natives of planet Knorr are vaguely bird like humanoids. Their bodies are covered with bright-yellow feathers, and they have scaly legs and talons.
    • In "The Earthwar Saga", the Slimehound aliens are vaguely humanoid, but they are green-skinned, have four legs, elongated craniums, snail-like eyestalks and hog-like noses.
    • "The Super-Steed of Steel": The unnamed aliens who attempt to invade Earth have humanoid bodies, scaly orange skin, black eyes and fins protruding from their fish-like heads.
  • Bad Planet features aliens of many shapes and sizes and the closest ones to this trope are the Phaedons, an nearly extinct race of large, grey humanoids with extra eyes.
  • The backgrounds of Copperhead are diversely populated with aliens of many stripes. The most screen time goes to Budroxifinicus' species: hairy humanoids with a bugeyed bestial face and opposable toes.
  • Wonder Woman (1987): One of Diana's command crew is a defected Dominator, and another looks like a teal skinned stooped old woman, just with Alien Hair, a misshapen forehead, a snub nose and eight fingers instead of ten.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animated 
  • Fantastic Planet: The Traags/Draags. Aside from their size, they're essentially hairless, blue-skinned, red-eyed humans.
  • Lilo & Stitch: Most of the aliens are some form of this. Three of them are even able to pass for human with a Paper-Thin Disguise, and it's just unrealistic enough to be funny.
  • All of the aliens in Titan A.E. fit this trope, with two arms, two legs, a mouth, etc.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Alien's Xenomorphs.
    • The Xenomorphs are excused, since they take on the traits of their hosts, perhaps so they'll be better adapted to their environment. In Alien³ we see one that was a quadruped because it burst from a dog, Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem also has one that looks like a Predator, including the "dreadlocks" and mandiblades (fits into the trope, but solely because the Yautja host does.) Other examples are fully straight.
    • Even more so, the Predators (Yautja).
    • In Prometheus the proto-Xenomorph "Deacon". Its former host, the Engineer, straddles the line between this and Human Aliens.
  • Avatar
    • The Na'vi are ten-foot-tall, blue-skinned, yellow-eyed, cat-nosed, four-fingered and four-toed (note, however, the titular Half-Human Hybrid Avatars have five), with what is essentially an organic network cable that looks like a braided ponytail.
    • Animals on Pandora are in two main types; four-limbed and six-limbed. Seeing as how the life on Pandora is connected by a 'brain-like' biological network, it's possible that the evolution of life on the planet was guided by this mind. This would also explain why the Na'vi are capable of linking their minds with every other animal, which would require an improbable amount of co-evolution from a Darwinian standpoint. Pandora's biology is not necessarily Earth's biology. They were evolved from the same ancestor as the ape-like Prolemuri which have four partially fused arms with two fingers on each. The Na'vi just had those arms fuse together all the way.
  • District 9: The aliens have two legs, one head and two eyes, but that's as much as they have in common with humans. They have four arms including the smaller, almost vestigial arms housed in their torso. They largely resemble seven-foot tall humanoid cockroaches, and even their vocal chords are too alien to try to mimic human speech.
  • Star Wars: Many aliens (jointly described as humanoids). Famous examples include the Wookiees (hulking ursine/simian aliens that look a bit like Bigfoot); Ewoks (Ursine Aliens that resemble teddy bears or perhaps drop bears); Gungans (Frog Men/Fish People that include Jar Jar Binks); Aqualish (walrus-like humanoids, pictured above); Trandoshans (lizard-like humanoids); and Gamorreans (pig-like humanoids). The other common kind is the rubber foreheaded near-humans, who share an ancestry with baseline humans, though there are some genuine examples of Starfish Aliens (including, famously, the Hutts). There are also cyborgs (some human and some not) and crossbreeds of similar (usually hominid or vaguely hominid) species.

  • This trope plays out in the Alterien series:
    • Pleiades is an exceptionally tall man with many of the same features as Alteriens in their true form. However, he has rounded ears and polydactyly on both his hands and feet. He has five fingers and a thumb on each hand and six toes on each foot. Apart from that, he looks very similar to humans.
    • The Alteriens in their true form are like this with their pointed ears, somewhat larger than normal heads and eyes for their respective builds and lack of eyebrows. Additionally, the only hair on their entire bodies is from their heads. They were modeled after the Sisters of Orion and other similar Shanda'ryn hybrids.
  • From Animorphs, the Hork-Bajir would be the main example, but otherwise they look something like dinosaurs covered with blades. There's also the Gedds, which look like misshapen monkeys, and the Howlers, probably the most human-like, despite their skin looking like hardened lava.
  • Area 51: The Airlia, who look very similar to humans, with uniformly pale skin, slitted red eyes, heads that are twice humans' average size, very long earlobes which reach to the shoulders, longer limbs and fiery red hair. This resemblance makes a lot of sense, as humans were created by them.
  • There is a variety of races in Mikhail Akhmanov's Arrivals from the Dark books. The races that fit this trope include the Bino Faata (most book protagonists are descended from a human-Faata hybrid), the Kni'lina (vegetarians with no facial hair), the Haptors (big Proud Warrior Race Guys with horn-like bumps on their heads), the Teruxi (a race of extremely-attractive humanoids with a Free-Love Future mentality), the Nil'hazi (an aggressive female-dominated race), and dozens of primitive humanoid races introduced in the Trevelian's Mission spin-off series. The near-humanoid races include the Lo'ona Aeo (Space Elves with four sexes and four fingers on each hand, who reproduce like the asari), the Paraprims (hairy primate-like Telepathic Spacemen), and the Llyano (primitive tribal arboreals). The races that completely avert this are the insectoid Arkhs, the shapeshifting Proteids, and the worm-like Silmarri.
  • The four oxygen breathing species in the Chanur Novels are Humanoid Aliens (with the three methane breathing species being Starfish Aliens):
  • In Childhood's End, the Overlords superficially look somewhat human, but on closer examination are far more alien.
  • The Destroyermen series takes place on an alternate Earth where the Cretaceous extinction apparently never happened. The two dominant species are the Mi-Anaaka (called Lemurians by the titular destroyermen), a humanoid species descended from Madagascar's lemurs, and the Grik, a species of predatory dinosaur descendants that look pretty much like their ancestors. Later several variations on the Grid are encountered.
  • The Drake Maijstral series by Walter Jon Williams has the Khosali, who long ago conquered Earth, and who therefore would probably prefer to consider us "Khosalioid Aliens". They are taller, on average, than humans, and covered with fur, and they have pointy faces, and some of their joints work slightly differently from ours. But overall, we were lucky that they were so much like us, as it made fitting into their culture, after we were conquered, that much easier.
  • Discussed in Jon Stewart's Earth (The Book), who explains that humanity's ideas on what aliens might look like most frequently ended up being variations on themselves with "a piece of metal shit on their face to make them look spacey". Interestingly, the book itself seems to avert this, as several parts appear to acknowledge the fact that the aliens who will read this book might be completely different from us (maybe even Energy Beings).
  • Encounter With Tiber: Tiberians are actually two subspecies, but they both have a lot of similarities with each other and with humans. Instead of a single 4-chambered heart, they have lots of smaller hearts and lungs that connect to a blood mixer. They do, however, have something like kidneys and a brain.
  • Galaxy Zack: Nebulites, the inhabitants of planet Nebulon, are all humans with blue skin and black hair.
  • The History of the Galaxy doesn't really have that many alien races, but, of the ones that are present (and described), only three fit this trope: the blue-skinned Harammins, the Heavy Worlder Norls, and the more human-like Emulotti. The races averting the trope include the Insects, the two-headed Logrians, and the Evolgs.
  • John Carter of Mars: Of the five main races inhabiting Barsoom, the Red, Yellow, Black and White Martians are very human-looking, with only their exotic skin colors giving away that they are actually aliens (plus, they lay eggs). The Green Martians are more alien-looking with their four arms and tusks, but still humanoid enough to qualify.
  • Larry Niven averted this for the most part in his Known Space universe, but used the Kzinti, who are Cat Folk.
  • Many of the species in the My Teacher Is an Alien series, although there are quite a few examples of Starfish Aliens as well. The ones closest to human in shape, Broxholm, Kreeblim, and Hoo-Lan, can pass for human if they wear Latex Perfection disguises, though only Hoo-Lan is close enough to be a borderline Human Alien (though child sized and blue). Of course, since the plot kicks off with aliens disguising themselves as humans, this trope is kind of a requirement.
  • In Out of the Silent Planet, Mars' sorns are bipedal and otherwise structurally similar to humans, besides the feathers, needle-thinness, and the extra four feet they have on us.
  • Both played straight and also frequently averted by E. E. "Doc" Smith.
    • The inhabitants of the Skylark Series's Green system and even the monstrous Fenachrone fit into the same general framework of 'upright biped' as do humans and the Jelmi are indistinguishable from humanity, but the Chlorans are utterly alien.
    • Frequently averted in the Lensman universe, however. True, there are a lot of non-Earth-origin species which fit this trope, but the degree to which utterly alien species are to be found on both sides of the conflict (and especially among the "good guys") stands out even today. Barring his wife Clarissa, eventually, not one of Kim Kinnison's fellow Second-Stage Lensmen is even remotely human in appearance. One of them (Nadreck) can't even coexist in the same room without special equipment, and even with it he can't stay very long.
  • The Radiant Dawn has the Wutner, a species of blue-tinted stocky humanoid aliens with hooked claws.
  • Most of the alien races in Revelation Space Series are Starfish Aliens, but the Amarantin were humanoid birds.
  • Shadows of the Empire: Though descended from reptiles, the Falleen also have the same basic body plan as humans, with some hair (enough to form a topknot) and only slightly scaly skin (although it's green). Female Falleen also have breasts.
  • The Parshendi of The Stormlight Archive are of humanoid shape, but have marbled black and red skin. They also posses a limited form of Voluntary Shapeshifting. They perodically change forms based on what job they are preforming. For example warform causes them to grow armor, workform is strong and used for general labor, and mateform is used for reproduction. Of course on Roshar Humans are actually the aliens. They destroyed their home planet unintentionally and were originally taken in by the Parshendi, which explains why the Parshendi fit in better with the Bizarre Alien Biology of Roshar.
  • The Vegans in This Immortal. They are rpughly human-shaped but are blue-skinned, amber-eyed (or at least Cort Myshtigo is) and the vents for their lungs can be found of their torso. Additionally, their bodies are covered in patterns invisible to humans, enabling Vegans to identified each other's clan by pattern.
  • In the Ukiah Oregon series, Hex and Prime, the only survivors of the initial Ontongard invasion horse, have bodies that looked largely human, but with all black eyes, strangely textured hair, and slightly odd proportions.
  • Undercover Alien: The Komao and Vartar both have two arms, two legs, and one head, and that's all they have in common with humans.
    • The Komao are described as having longer necks, lavender skin covered in scales, and two mouths
    • The Vartar are described as having similar proportions to a gorilla, having crimson skin, a large cluster of eyes, and they breathe through gill-like structures over their shoulders.
  • Urn Burial's Fefethil and Wawaka are cat people and dog people, respectively. Starfish Aliens do get a mention, but none appear as characters.
  • We Are Legion (We Are Bob): Several chapter epigraphs discuss panspermia, the idea that DNA and RNA developed in space and spread to multiple planets. This theory seems to bear out when Bob finds the Deltans, a mostly-human species in the Delta Eridani system.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Farscape species with repeat appearances:
    • Hynerians - 2-3 foot tall stumpy limbed frogs with really big eyebrows.
    • Scarrans - Giant lizard men. Range from human but scaly to spaaaaaace tyrannosauruses.
    • The Ancients - Insectoid, but generally look human via Voluntary Shapeshifting. And that's just the ones that have been altered to survive in our dimension; we don't even glimpse what the True Ancients really look like.
    • Diagnosans - Skeleton thin, two slits instead of a nose, and a bulbous head.
  • Some aliens in Star Trek, such as the Breen and the Gorn. Most tend to be of the rubber forehead and human variety though.
  • Babylon 5 had several, like the Narn and the Pak'Mara.
  • In Andromeda, the Than-Thre-Kull and the Magog.
  • The various Stargate franchises have mostly Human Aliens, but several species are different:
    • The Asgard are The Greys, although, in distant past, they used to look more human.
    • The Unas are tribal Lizard Folk.
    • The Ohne are advanced Fish People, as are the catfish-like aliens of Stargate Universe.
    • Jup and Tenat of the Lucian Alliance were the only shown members of an unspecified race who are clearly Rubber-Forehead Aliens.
    • The Reol are a race of beige-skinned humanoids with dreads and wrinkly skin who can make you think they're your best friend.
    • The Gadmeer are only shown in an image but appear to be bipeds of either reptilian or insectoid type.
    • The Ursini in Stargate Universe. Despite the name, they don't look at all bear-like.
  • Doctor Who:
    • Sontarans are short, bald humanoids with orangey-brown skin. Some characters compare them to potatoes.
    • Catkind are anthropomorphic cats.
    • Raxacoricofallapatorians are chubby, with big, black eyes and huge claws. We've seen ones with green and orange skin.
  • The Sarah Jane Adventures
    • The Shansheeth are anthropomorphic vultures.
  • On ALF, the aliens from Melmac look like a cross between dogs and aardvarks, and they also have a bit of Bizarre Alien Biology. But they still had a mostly human culture. And they could build spaceships, which could take them all the way to Earth. Strangely, their planet also had cats.
  • The overwhelming majority of aliens in the Ultra Series if they're not Human Aliens, including the Ultras themselves. People in Rubber Suits just work that way.
  • Vagrant Queen: All of the sapients living in the other galaxy share the same body plan as humans, and most don't look that much different from us.
  • Aliens in the Family: Spit, Snizzy, and Bobut are aliens with huge heads and eyes that protrude from the sides of their heads.


    Tabletop Games 
  • Godforsaken: Forlorren, the dominant native species of the Firmament, are short, broad, muscular humanoid folk with brilliant golden skin and billowing, silvery hair; moord, the dominant native species of Korak-Mar, could be mistaken for hairless humans with venous flesh. The "alien" part comes from how each of the Godforsaken Lands is actually on a different planet, even though the people of Bontherre lack the context to grasp this concept.
  • Starfire: The various alien species humanity goes to war with include Cat People (the Khanate of Orion), Bird People (the Ophiuchi), Bear People (the Rigellians), and 4-Armed People (the Gorm).
  • Warhammer 40,000: The majority of the galaxy's species are Humanoid Aliens. For example, the Tau are short humanoids with grey to blue skin, no noses, four fingers, red eyes, and hooves, the Orks are large humanoids with green skin and a fungi-based biology and the Kroot are gangly yet disproportionately strong humanoids with avian features and the ability to direct their own evolution. Necrons are formerly biological beings now contained in living metal with a form resembling a skeleton, while some of the more mutated followers of chaos could be considered more humanoid than human. The Eldar are the exception among the humanoid races as Rubber-Forehead Aliens.
    • In Xenology, a background book, the dissecting bio-technician notes the remarkable similarity between the major races of the setting, and how several of them seem to have been artificially constructed. Humanity may or may not have been made by the same beings that made the Eldar and the Orks among others, which would explain their gross similarity.
    • The Hrud straddle the line between this and Starfish Aliens. While early editions of the game had Hrud as spacefaring Rat Men, the design has since been changed to ghastly barely-humanoid shambling things with multi-segmented ribbons for limbs and truly Bizarre Alien Biology. The abovementioned Xenology mentions that Hrud carcasses decompose so quickly it's difficult to find one worth dissecting.
    • In some editions it's explained that most of them have a common origin, although how canon this is in the current fluff is up in the air. One story goes that the Necrons were the first humanoids, the Old Ones created the Eldar, Orks and the seldom-seen apelike Jokaeros to fight them, then the Necrons manipulated the evolution of Earth's mammals to create a new Super-Soldier race to counter the Old Ones' creations, which eventually became the humans (the experiment was largely considered a failure because the Anti-Magic Pariah Gene they were trying to cultivate turned out to be vanishingly rare). Later on some Eldar scientists (believed to be working for Magnificent Bastard par excellence Eldrad Ulthran) genetically engineered the Tau from a sheeplike animal for as-yet unrevealed reasons, while the Tau's favorite client race, the Kroot were originally birdlike but absorbed some Ork DNA due to their peculiar digestive processes.
  • Dungeons & Dragons: The Kaorti are a borderline example. Debuting in the third edition Fiend Folio, these Gigeresque humanoids are the result of either humans or elves (depending on the version of the backstory) experimenting with the Far Realm. The "borderline" descriptor is for two reasons: Firstly, the Far Realm is not the same thing as outer spaaaaaace but is rather an incomprehensible plane of existence inspired by Lovecraftian horror. Secondly, while they do appear superficially anthropomorphic, they otherwise resemble the aforementioned xenomorphs and are composed of a strange, toxic resin instead of bone and flesh.
  • In Traveller the Aslan and Vargr are four-limbed with two limbs for walking and two for grasping. However, their appearance also resembles some Terran animals (lions and wolves respectively). In behavior they are roughly comparable to humans — at least enough for them to vaguely comprehend one another.
  • Every playable alien species in the Rocket Age solar system bar the Metisians is a humanoid alien; from the apelike Venusians, the various castes of Mars and the plant-based Ganymedians
  • 3 of the 4 main races (the Corporation, Legion and Kaltorans) in Fragged Empire are mostly humanoid. The Nephalim can be, but often aren't.
  • Space 1889: Every alien race encountered so far has been humanoid: The Martians are very similar to humans, but are clearly different. The Venusians are pretty much Lizardfolk. The Ice Dwellers on the dark side of Mercury don't quite fit this, because they are essentially a humanoid torso set on top of a large crab-like body.

  • Tamagotchi: When the original 1990's toys released, there were only a very small handful of humanoid-looking Tamagotchi breeds that have a few features unlike humans (skin color, animal-like ears, no visible noses on most of them, etc.), with the rest having more simplistic body designs such as, for example, being an armless cephalothorax. Later models of the handhelds made these breeds more common, with Lovelitchi, Melodytchi, Himespetchi, Gozarutchi and Spacytchi being just five of a boatload of them. In-universe, the explanation is that human-like Tamagotchis became more common after they vistied Earth.

    Video Games 
  • Achron has the Vecgir, which are roughly a meter taller than the average human and have an extra set of arms and a sort of reptilian appearance. Compared to the other alien race in the game, the Grekim, the Vecgir are downright charming.
  • The Iskai from Albion are tall, fast-moving and nimble but frail mammalian humanoids with faces that resemble those of great cats, mostly short hair all over their bodies, tails that can be used to manipulate objects and use weapons, four nipples, a somewhat telepathic forehead organ called a Trii, cat-like feet and on them claws that unlike Earth vertebrate claws are bony and presumably part of their skeletons. They're basically as different as humanoids could be from humans while still unintentionally appearing to be related to them, although those claws would be a little puzzling if they really were.
  • Tran, beatmania IIDX's Series Mascot, has white hair, has simpler details than other human characters, sports two light blue pupil-less eyes, and has no other facial features.
  • Halo: The majority of the Covenant species have generally humanoid body shape, but significant differences in limbs and especially faces (the Elites/Sangheili for instance have Monstrous Mandibles), and are larger or smaller on average than humans. The Engineers and the Drones are significantly less humanoid. The Hunters are a unique case, being Hive Minds of eel-like aliens that mass together into a humanoid shape.
  • Mass Effect.
    • The vast majority of the alien species fall into this trope, with the asari, batarians, and the quarians being Rubber-Forehead Aliens. The elcor may not seem humanoid at first, but that is because they walk on all fours, use their powerful forearms and fists to support themselves, much like gorillas. This is due to having evolved on a high gravity world, where falling over often means not getting up again. Even the geth, who are capable of inhabiting any shape of body due to their nature as software, build most of their mobile platforms in a humanoid shape (or rather, quarianoid).
    • The few known exceptions are the hanar, the kirik, the Thorian's unnamed race, the Reapers ( and their creators, the Leviathans), the rachni, and the keepers.
    • The novel Mass Effect: Revelation briefly mentions that there's quite a few Epileptic Trees among humans as to why, exactly, the humanoid body structure is so common. Then-Lieutenant David Anderson subscribes to the simplest theory: that there's just some as-yet-undiscovered evolutionary advantage to it. Out of universe, of course, it's a time and budget thing coupled with the way Unreal Engine 3's character animations are implemented: each new creature type requires a different skeleton to be programmed (hence why the less-humanoid species are rarely shown moving around). Plus, on the playable side of characters, they all need to be able to use the same weapons and (mostly in the first game) armor.
  • Meteos has a number of these, differentiated by different skin colors or head shapes. An example would be the Geolitians, the starting race who are light blue in skin color and have antennae/horns on the sides of their heads that curve upwards.
  • Mother: Giegue was this in combination with The Greys before he went off the deep end.
  • Metroid:
    • In Metroid, the only evidence of aliens with human-like body structure are the Chozo statues, which resemble an anthropomorphic cross between a manta ray and a parrot on two legs - though some official art suggests the Chozos had exoskeletons rather than skin and feathers, and assuming the bird-like alien in the manual is supposed to be a Chozo. Chozos had the more advanced technology in the setting (such as Samus' power suit), and some kind of language that despite their technological prowess is mostly found written in stone ruins.
    • There are actually several humanoid aliens in the manual but no evidence for them is seen in any game until Super Metroid.
    • The Space Pirates appear either reptilian or lobster-like, depending on which specific game they're in. The KI Hunter Pirates slip into Big Creepy-Crawlies or Star Fish Aliens though.
    • Gandrayda from Metroid Prime 3: Corruption is a humanoid with translucent purple skin.
  • Some Pokémon.
  • Richman 11 has Doctor Y, an alien character with blue skin, a droplet-shaped head and fingerless hands.
  • Star Control:
    • The original games have the Arilou Lalee'lay and the Shofixti (upright-walking marsupials). A few others are added in the third game. It's implied that the Arilou may have tinkered with human genetics at some point in our past, which could explain the resemblance.
    • Less common in Star Control Origins, in which only the Mowlings really qualify, with the Menkmack and Drenkend to a lesser extent (with the latter it's hard to tell because they have been heavily modified by the Scryve... presumably the original Drenkend did not have tank treads in place of legs). The "Mysterious Aliens" do fit the mold, but they mention that they chose that form because "This is what humans expect aliens to look like".
  • The Protoss in StarCraft definitely qualify. They've got the "human" number of heads, arms, legs, and eyes, but they also have digitigrade legs, nerve cords coming out the backs of their heads, and skin (scales?) in a wide variety of cool colors. Also, they have No Mouth, because they're apparently photosynthetic.
  • World of Warcraft's draenei, which are something of an expy of the Protoss, are somewhat more human-looking: They look like blue, catfish-whiskered classic demons.
    • Many races throughout the Warcraft series are technically humanoid aliens. Orcs are originally from Draenor, not Azeroth (so technically the other races are all orcoid aliens in the parts of the games that take place on the former). Much of the burning legion is made up of aliens, most prominently the Man'ari eredar and the Dreadlords.
  • The Pikmin themselves have an unknown degree of intelligence, but whatever Olimar himself is is pretty weird too. He's basically humanoid but under an inch tall. Oxygen is toxic to him. He has few hairs, and when they fall out thanks to stress they make a "hissing sound". He's got weird talents with whistling. He says the following in one of his voyage logs, contrasting it to how Pikmin come from and return to the soil.
    "My people were borne out of the sea of stars to come down to Hocotate, and when we complete out lives, we return to the great ocean of stars."
  • The Vasudans in FreeSpace are humanoid, albeit with apparently mechanical additions. Averted with the Shivans.
  • Ratchet & Clank with protagonist Ratchet for example.
  • Crypto and the Furons in general from Destroy All Humans! also count.
  • In X: Rebirth, the Teladi Lizard Folk share many features with humans and have roughly similar facial features. However, the teladi have an odd forward-leaning posture due to their large tail and alligator-like limb structure. In the previous games the video communication busts indicated a much more human posture and traits such as an affinity for clothing and in the case of teladi Space Pirates, nice hats.
  • Plenty of alien races in FTL: Faster Than Light are humanoid in shape. The Engi look like minimalistic humanoids despite being able to take many forms, the Zoltan are Energy Beings who take a humanoid shape, Rockmen look like golems and Lanius are humanoids who can meld with metals. The Mantis and Slugs are exceptions though, looking like scaled-up versions of their namesake species.
    • The Engi are a justified example in that the ones you can recruit choose to be that shape for convenience, and it's strongly implied that Engi spacecraft are technically the same species as their crew, or at least closely related.
  • The native species of Oddworld have this to varying extents. The games include Mudokons, Clakkerz, Grubbs, Outlaws, and Wolvarks, in addition to less humanoid but still sapient races.
  • The eponymous Procyons from Treasure Planet: Battle at Procyon are Humanoid Aliens with raccoon like features.
  • The Kir'ko of Age of Wonders: Planetfall are Insectoid Aliens that have a Hive Caste System. While their castes include many non-humanoid body plans, humanoid castes such as Swarm Heralds are common enough that the Kir'ko can use technology originally intended for humans with only some modification.

  • The aliens in Allen the Alien look like humans with antennae.
  • The Mentakans in Cwynhild's Loom, as seen in a flashback, are large, purplish humanoids.
  • El Goonish Shive
    • Uryuoms are humanoid shape shifters who in appearance are a mix of Little Green Men and The Greys but as shapeshifters can appear completely human if they have a human form among their personal cache of possible forms.
    • The lespuko being a genetic relative of the uryuom are also humanoid in build but more animalistic than them.
  • Enemy Quest: Most of the alien Visitors share a basic humanoid shape with some differences. The Skut don't count because they look like short dog/rodent/lizard hybrid creatures with six eyes.
  • Most of the alien species seen so far in the webcomic Inhuman are humanoid - it has been mistaken for a Furry comic, to the artist's great annoyance.
  • Homestuck has the Cherubs; green skeleton-like things. Trolls -grey, vaguely insect humanoids with grey skin, horns, and fangs- could fit either here or as Rubber-Forehead Aliens.
    • The Carapacians are the humanoid inhabitants of the Derse and Prospit with, as the name suggests, a hard, shiny and supple outer shell which is pitch black or brilliant white depending on which moon they hail from. Also, they can be radically different in size, ranging from the tiny Courtyard Droll to the Hegemonic Brute, and they possess either blunt or razor sharp teeth.
  • Most aliens in Luminary Children look a lot like humans.
  • All the speaking characters of Strange Planet.
  • The Pracs in Xenospora are basically humans with animal ears.
  • Most aliens in Zukahnaut fit this trope.
  • Most denizens of the Runners 'verse, including Cember's species which has vestigial radial symmetry (indicating it has evolved from something more starfish than human-ish).
  • Almost all species met in Captain Ufo so far are like this. The remaining ones are Starfish Aliens.
  • Plenty of the characters in Reversed Star fall under this trope.
  • Grrl Power: Discussed quite thoroughly. The generic human body template is evolutionarily effective and efficient; two eyes, two arms, and two legs are more effective than having less, but having more than two quickly leads to sharply diminishing returns as they gain minimal benefits for increased calorie requirements. Therefore most species that are too far off the norm go extinct long before they become technologically advanced, let along make it into space. There are certainly exceptions (one of the main characters is an alien with four arms, and one of the primary villains is from a species with wings), and there are also plenty of Starfish Aliens, but humanoid species are the majority. Not to mention that due to centuries of Alien Abductions, there are plenty of actual humans in space, though they have access to genetic engineering and thus often look just as alien as everyone else.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Ben 10: Nearly every alien that Ben can transform into, with the only exceptions being Stinkfly, Wildmutt, and Ghostfreak. Of the original ten, Heatblast plays this the straightest, being the most similar in height and build to a human, despite being made of magma. From a distance, he could be mistaken for a guy who's been Wreathed in Flames. Alien Force introduces more humanoid alien transformations, but also has quite a few non-humanoids, even Starfish Aliens, such as Brainstorm and Goop. There's also Jetray and Spidermonkey, who aren't Starfish Aliens, but they aren't humanoid either.
  • Futurama: The Decapodians are humanoid crustaceans, and Kif's species are humanoid amphibians.
  • The Transformers: The Transformers themselves. They're Mechanical Lifeforms, but most have one mode with a humanoid body plan... And some even have more than one, for one reason or another, while others have one and are part of another. Heck, there's even a small handful of Transformers that don't have humanoid robot modes individually, but are still part of a humanoid Combining Mecha.
  • Invader Zim: The Irkens, despite otherwise being a cross between Insectoid Aliens and Lizard Folk.
  • Voltron: Legendary Defender: While there are a number of aliens who are decisively not-humanoid, and even a couple who could qualify as Starfish Aliens (such as the Balmera, which is a living planet), most of the recurring ones are humanoid. Most prominently are the Alteans, who are Space Elves, and the Galra, who run the gamut in terms of appearances from being Cat Folk, to The Reptilians, to just looking like purple-skinned Alteans.

  • The popular image of The Greys presents them as Little Green Men... only greyer.
  • The reptilians from Reptilian Conspiracy theories tend to fluctuate between this, Rubber-Forehead Aliens, and even less human-like Lizard Folk. Indeed, there are many of these in UFO lore, which is a reason for doubt to some people since it seems somewhat unlikely that so many aliens would have a similar body plan (or in some cases veer right into Human Aliens).
  • Ulti's Bar & Grill has the worlds of the Dark Legion, which have a variety of aliens among them. Many of these said aliens are humanoid in appearance, if not really anywhere near a human in ability or specifics.

Alternative Title(s): Humanoid Alien