Follow TV Tropes


Identical Grandson

Go To

Kim Possible: Drakken had an ancestor there too?
Ron Stoppable: Okay, you know what, this is just getting ludicrous!note 
Kim Possible, "Rewriting History"

A character's descendant or ancestor is physically identical (or would be, except for small cosmetic changes) to the character himself, and often has the same name. A subsection of Uncanny Family Resemblance. Of course, he might just be his own ancestor.

This is normally the result of budget considerations when casting Time Travel stories, the consequence of having a long-term contract for a star when a show permanently jumps generations for some reason, or an excuse to do an Elseworld story with essentially the same character in a different setting.

If the character and descendant are one and the same, then that's My Grandson Myself.

Despite the name, the trope is limited to neither males nor grandchildren.

This trope gets somewhat disturbing if you over-think it. Having one's grandparents look exactly like their grandchild and said grandchild's mate has pseudo-incestuous imagery.


Usually an Averted Trope by this point. Compare with Visions of Another Self. When it's the life story that's identical, the character is a member of Generation Xerox.

Generally the result of one of three things:

  1. It's simply cheaper to have an actor play their own ancestor than try to get a new actor to play them,
  2. Executives assume people are too dim to recognize that someone is a character's ancestor and thus a precursor to that character if you don't find some way to constantly remind them, or
  3. Both.

Of course, due to similarities in genetics, this can be compared to a Real Life version of the animation trope Only Six Faces.



    open/close all folders 

  • The rise in popularity of wood-burning stoves in the 1970s led to a demand for chimney sweeps. One enterprising young man in (town redacted) went to a tourist trap to have a sepia-toned photograph taken of himself dressed in 19th-century clothing and holding his chimney sweeping tools, and featured the picture with the caption "Our Founder" in his ads.

    Anime & Manga 
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Joseph Joestar, in his youth, looks almost exactly like his grandfather Jonathan Joestar. Araki has commented that he gave Joseph a nearly identical design to his grandfather in order to ease the transition for his readers between Phantom Blood and Battle Tendency. However, their personalities couldn't be more different, as is noted in the series.
    • This is subverted in the anime, however, where Jonathan was given an Adaptation Dye-Job from brown hair to blue, and Joseph, while keeping the brown hair, was drawn with very spiky bangs, to further tell him apart from his grandpa. Their faces, however, remain very similar.
    • Also, although not identical, Jotaro Kujo resembles a lot Joseph Joestar, his grandfather, when he was young. Even more so in the manga.
  • The characters from Yu-Gi-Oh! with ties to Ancient Egypt look exactly like their ancestors, except with a different skin tone. It should be noted that the cast is primarily Japanese while the ancestors are Egyptian.
  • In Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, the series protagonist, Tanjiro’s, ancestor from a few generations ago, Sumiyoshi, looks exactly like him but only taller, as he was shown as an older man with wife and child, due seemly being in good health; meanwhile Tanjiro’s immediate relative, his father Tanjuro, looks just slightly different due his ill underweight appearance.
  • In .hack//Legend of the Twilight, Mireille looks suspiciously similar to Mistral. This is justified, though; the story takes place on the internet and she's using her (revealed to be) mother's account.
    • , In any case, it's established that player characters in the .hack franchise are all based on off-the-peg character types. There's a scene in .hack//SIGN where Subaru sees someone she thinks is Tsukasa but is actually a different character with only a few variations of hair color and facial markings. This is also lampshaded in .hack//Unison, where Black Rose and Mimiru have an argument as to who chose the character design first, and Tsukasa meets a younger player with the same basic design. .hack//Legend of the Twilight [Bracelet] begins with Shugo and Rena winning the right to use characters based on Kite and Black Rose (apparently those exact combinations of character customizations were locked by the admins after Kite and Black Rose's adventure, though to be fair Kite's was originally green without Wave marks, changing to his well-known form upon getting the bracelet and thus possible its not normally selectable anyways; additionally, the series uses chibi versions of the characters).
  • If you subscribe to the theory that Mai-Otome is set in the future of Mai-HiME, then this would apply, surname changes aside.
  • Every male member of Captain Harlock's family line is named "Phantom F. Harlock," has the same facial features, build and hairstyle, pilots some kind of aircraft, and frequently has an identical scar on his cheek. This has been shown to extend at least back to the World War I era (from a main series set in the far future). His short, squat sidekick Ooyama also has identical ancestors, although they don't crop up quite as often.
    • Gun Frontier had an ancestor named "Westerner Franklin Harlock" who also looked identical to the Harlock in the future stories. They are also voiced by the same English voice actor.
  • Gundam Wing: Frozen Teardrop introduces Relena's grandmother Katrina. note  Taken even further by showing Katrina wearing the same Cool Mask her grandson Milliardo would wear as Zechs Merquise.
  • Oz Vessalius from Pandora Hearts looks exactly like a younger version of Jack, his ancestor. This becomes completely justified and subverted at the same time when it's revealed that Oz is not a true Vessalius but rather the soul of the B-Rabbit who is inhabiting Jack's backwards-aging body.
  • Count D of Pet Shop of Horrors looks exactly like his grandfather… and his father… and his sister… Well, they're not human anyway.
  • Yotsuya from Maison Ikkoku looks exactly like his grandfather, causing a bit of confusion when his likeness appears to show up in old photos, adding to the mystery who he is and what he does.
  • While it is taking place in an alternate universe, the one-shot Sailor Moon manga, Parallel Sailor Moon, stars a bunch of daughters of the Guardian Senshi who not only look exactly like their parents, they even have the same names as them. The only apparent exceptions—Usagi's daughters Chibiusa and Kousagi—are simply obscure to English readers. "Usagi" means "rabbit", and "Kousagi" means "small rabbit"; "Chibiusa" is just a nickname meaning "little Usa(gi)"—she's really named for her mother, just like all the other Senshi's daughters.
  • Utawarerumono: While on her deathbed, Tusukuru says this to her granddaughter, Eruru.
  • Baccano!'s Huey Laforet appears to have the strongest genes ever, as his traits of being a gold-eyed, dark-haired, pale-skinned pretty boy extend even as far as his great-great-grandson Charon.
    • Another one of the immortals (namely Szilard) has an identical many-greats grandson whom we meet in 2001.
    • Claudia looks like a female version of her great-grandfather Claire… But she still inherited her great-great-grandfather Huey's golden eyes.
    • Both Elmer and Aging note that Luchino, while not quite the clone of Huey that Chane, Liza, and Charon are, still has a noticeable resemblance to him. This would not seem so ridiculous if Luchino wasn't three hundred years removed from the man in question (an absurdity lampshaded by Luchino himself), proving once and for all that Huey has the most stubborn genes in the world.
  • Fist of the Blue Sky, Tetsuo Hara's prequel to Fist of the North Star, centers around Kenshiro's uncle and Ryuken's older half-brother Kenshiro Kasumi, who is Kenshiro if he lived in Pre-WWII Asia and was a heavy smoker. The manga exactly hasn't established how they're related yet since the Kenshiro from North Star was supposedly adopted…
  • In the Princess Knight sequel Twin Knight, Sapphire's daughter Violetta looks exactly like her… and also has to cross-dress, wear identical clothes, and learn escrima.
  • Being the past selves of the main characters in the main series, the Saiyuki Gaiden guys fit this, although Minekura originally wanted to make them look completely different to their future incarnations.
  • It's a minor plot point in Bunny Drop that Daikichi looks exactly like his grandfather Souichi did at age thirty. Among other things, this causes Rin (Souichi's illegitimate daughter) to get attached to him almost immediately.
  • Rikuo in Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan is almost completely identical to how his grandfather used to look. And his father. Must be some strong genes in that family.
  • Son Goten of Dragon Ball Z is a particularly egregious example. He's the second child of Goku and looks 'exactly' like him. This, in turn, makes him looks like his parental grandfather, Bardock. It might be a Saiyan thing, since Vegeta said that "all Saiyans look similar", which could because of a small gene pool given that Saiyans at their peak only numbered in the thousands (and a Non-Serial Movie further posited that "low class" Saiyans like Goku were bred from similar genetic stock, and Goku gained an Identical Stranger named Turles). Vegeta looks nearly identical to his own father, sans beard. Dragon Ball GT takes it to a ridiculous level, with the future descendants of both Goku & Vegeta looking like exact copies of their great-great-etc. ancestors. Even though they'd be mostly human, and it was already established with Vegeta's son and daughter that human-Saiyan hybrids need not look Saiyan-like at all. Then again, his daughter looks exactly like her human mother. With that said, Goten's personality, as with Goku's are different to Bardock's. Similarly, Goku Jr. was very different known his namesake, at least at first.
    • In Dragon Ball Minus we finally get to see Goku's mom, Gine. She looks like an older version of her great-granddaughter, Pan.
  • In the anime of Ranma ½, a time travel episode reveals that in her younger years Colonge resembled her great-granddaughter Shampoo.
    • Although that turned out to be a dream. So it was more just the character who was dreaming expecting this trope.
  • All of the founders of the Vongola family in Katekyō Hitman Reborn! bear a close resemblance to the tenth generation Guardians, including weapons used at one point.
    • Only Tsuna and Giotto are confirmed to have a biological relationship though.
    • Vongola Secondo and Xanxus look similar in appearance as well, though Xanxus is not the Ninth's son and was actually adopted.
  • In Natsume's Book of Friends, it's a major plot point that Takashi Natsume is all but identical to his late grandmother, Reiko: many of his issues are caused by the fact that ayakashi, not very conscious of human sex differences or the passage of time, regularly assume they're the same person and take up whatever grudges they had on Reiko up with him.
  • Apparently, every male of the Doumeki family in Xxx HO Li C looks exactly the same, for at least five generations.
    • And Watanuki bears an uncanny resemblance to how his ancestor, Clow Reed, looked when he was young.
  • In the 2003 anime version of Fullmetal Alchemist, Edward's great-grandchildren look exactly like younger versions of him, Al, and Winry (despite the fact that Winry is supposed to be stuck on the other side of the Gate). Other characters have identical grandchildren of them, with a slight twist since they're technically alternate versions of them.
  • Laxus from Fairy Tail looks like a younger Makarov, except much taller and more muscular. Hades, who was Precht Gaebolg and the man who appointed Makarov to the title of guildmaster back in the day, actually double-takes when Laxus crashes the party and calls him "boy", which he used to call Makarov, while an image of a younger Makarov is superimposed on him.
  • Somewhat Played for Laughs in the side story of the 20th volume of Dorabase (Baseball spin-off of Doraemon), where the 23rd-century versions of the characters are exactly the same, except for some very minor differences such as name and a few physical traits. Also, they suck at baseball until the main characters come to help them. Obviously justified since 60% of the cast are robots, but still pretty outrageous because they are about 100 years old apart from production year.
    • Also, in the end, it is very much implied that this trope will go on until the next (24th) century. This means that the main teams would still exist for the next 200 years or so.
  • One Piece: Monkey D. Garp, Luffy's grandfather, looked almost exactly like Luffy did when he was a kid. Even now you can see the resemblance, as Garp looks like a much older and brawnier Luffy.
  • From Eroica with Love's Dorian and Klaus look exactly like their ancestors, Luminous and Tyrian.
  • In Cat's Eye, the Kisugi sisters looks a lot like their ancestors: Rui (the oldest) and Ai (the youngest) are nearly identical to their mother (especially Rui, whose only difference is a mole on the cheek), while Hitomi is almost identical to her paternal grandmother, differing only in her hair and eye colors. Hitomi is especially egregious, as she's half-Japanese half-German while her grandmother was a blonde-haired green-eyed German.
  • Most of the "new generation" characters in Gundam Wing's sequel novel Frozen Teardrop are this, including the second Duo Maxwellnote , Qaterine Winner (younger sister of Quatre) and Kathy Po (daughter of Sally). The most creative they get with this is having Zechs Merquise and Lucrezia Noin's children each look like their opposite-gender parent. It also goes retroactive, revealing that Relena Peacecraft is a dead ringer for both her mother Katrina and her aunt Sabrina, though this last bit is justified by their being twins.
  • Nanami and Yukiji from Kamisama Kiss look almost identical and they share the same voice actress in the original Japanese dub. Yukiji is Nanami's ancestor from five hundred years ago.
  • Karin from Karin looks exactly like her grandmother, Elda, except with a different hair style, hair color, and larger breasts. Anju also looks identical to her maternal grandmother, Cecilia.
  • Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Vivid introduces Einhard Stratos and Sieglinde Jeremiah, who look very similar to their ancestors Claus G.S. Ingvalt and Wilfried Jeremiah, respectively. In Einhart's case, she only looks similar to her male ancestor when he was younger. There is also Fabia Crozelg, who also looks very similar to her Cat Girl witch ancestor.
    • Vivio Takamachi's case is different because she's a clone of Olive Sägebrecht, which justifies their resemblance.
  • Azumanga Daioh: Though she's only seen in the New Year's episode, Kaorin's mother looks exactly like her. She has to wake Kaorin to remind her she was supposed to be going out with her classmates to make her wish for the new year.
  • Words Worth: Aside from the differences in height and hair color, Miyu is the spitting image of her mother, Maria (seen in the lower-right, here). Astral even remarks on the resemblance, when his memories begin to return and he recalls his encounter with Maria.
    Astral: (voiceover, during flashback of Maria) "That girl…! Who *is* she?! She… she looks like Miyu!"
  • The Evillious Chronicles has multiple examples that come up as plot points (or even not) —such as several of Duke Venomania's descendants sharing his appearance, to their misfortune, or the Marlon family having a lot of men with blue hair and similar haircuts. From a meta perspective, this is because most of the main characters in each arc are portrayed by the same Vocaloid as their ancestor in the last one.
  • The only difference between Kaoru and her late mother in I Can't Understand What My Husband Is Saying is that Kaoru's hair is naturally purple and her mother's was caramel-colored. However, Kaoru started dyeing her hair blonde after getting married to Hajime, increasing the resemblance even further.
  • Shogunyan from Yo-Kai Watch is identical to his descendant, Jibanyan. He looks like a blue version of Jibanyan wearing samurai clothes. He looks so identical that Nate and Whisper thought he was Jibanyan cosplaying.
  • Shura Kirigakure from Blue Exorcist looks identical to her ancestor Tatsuko. This is because Tatsuko's descendants are cursed to look just like her.
  • Sgt. Frog: After being zapped with Kululu's "Midlife Crisis" gun in Episode 9, preadolescent Aki is shown to look very similar to her son Fuyuki (but not close enough that Funimation's dub could resist lampshading it). A later episode involving time travel reveals that teenage Aki also looked a lot like her daughter Natsumi — except for the hair color and the glasses, of course.
    • Fuyuki's son shown in a brief glimpse of the future at the end of the 6th season looks basically identical to Fuyuki's Bratty Half-Pint younger self.
  • With the exception of the fact that she has an extra pair of human ears under her hair, Couvert of Dog Days is the spitting image of Princess Clarifier. The confusing part is the fact that they aren't even directly related since Clarifier died before having any children. Couvert is actually a descendant of Clarifier's brother Valério and Adelaide.
    • During Valério and Adelaide's story about Flonyard's history, we see that most of the other major characters were like this as well.
  • In Ooku, Sadanobu looks identical to her grandmother Yoshimune, and given how she idolizes and tries to emulate Yoshimune, Sadanobu's probably aware of it.
  • Angelica from Superior is the spitting image of her grandmother (minus the eye color and the whole quarter-demon thing). It's also how she and her long lost grandfather Umberto realize that they're related.
  • Pokémon:
    • The Seafoam Islands' Professor Westwood ("The Evolution Solution") is completely identical to portraits of his father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and great-great-grandfather.
  • Rokujyouma no Shinryakusha!?: Thia and Ruth for their respective ancestors Princess Charl and Lady Knight Flairhan.
  • In Haikyuu!!, where Strong Family Resemblance is a common theme, the current Karasuno coach Keishin Ukai has a striking resemblance to his grandfather and previous coach Ikkei Ukai. This is something Nekomata (Ikkei's long-time friend and rival) likes to make fun of.

    Asian Animation 

    Audio Plays 
  • A Commander Korshal of the Galyari appears in the Big Finish Bernice Summerfield audio drama The Bone of Contention and the Big Finish Doctor Who audio drama Dreamtime, voiced in both by Steffan Rhodri. The former is set in the 27th century, the latter thousands of years in the future. According to Ahistory, Word of God from Simon A. Forward, who wrote both stories, is that the Galyari aren't that long-lived, but do pass their names on.

    Comic Books 
  • Superman looks exactly like his biological father Jor-El, who looked as old as Superman is now when he died. Except in the movies and the show Smallville where he's middle-aged and has graying or silver hair.
    • In the maxiseries The Kents, 19th century Smallville's Sheriff Nathaniel Kent looks exactly like Superman, despite Clark being adopted… and from another planet and species.
    • Subverted in Superman: Red Son in which Lex Luthor is revealed to the readers to be the ancestor of Superman. This makes the fact that Lex Luthor is married to and has a child with Lois Lane strange, especially since that means that Lois is Superman's ancestor.
  • In Batman Thomas Wayne looks exactly like his son, with the addition of a mustache. And sometimes not even that.
  • In The DCU, Booster Gold's ancestor, Daniel Carter, has not only the same last name but appears nearly identical, despite them being over four hundred years of Carter generations apart. He even manages to have a nearly identical personality, despite all odds.
    • Booster also encounters a First World War soldier who turns out to be Cyrus Lord, an ancestor of ex-JLI manager/sometime supervillain Maxwell Lord. Booster fails to appreciate this at first only because several weeks' beard growth and a bloody great bandage around his head disguise the fact that Cyrus is the spitting image of Max.
  • In the classic Carl Barks story "Voodoo Hoodoo," the entire conflict comes from the fact that Uncle Scrooge looked exactly like Donald Duck when he was younger. However, this was an early story, and Barks later began drawing young Scrooge differently. Years later, when Don Rosa created his epic The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck, this was handwaved as a disguise.
    • Also Gyro Gearloose looks like his grandfather Ratchet.
    • The Beagle Boys look like their grandparents as well.
  • X-Men:
    • In the comics, Jean Grey has an identical 17th-century ancestor, Lady Grey, who was a member of the Hellfire Club. Most of the other ancestors of major characters involved with the club are also identical.
    • When Magik and Mirage accidentally visit Ancient Egypt (in the 11th century BC, three millennia before their time), they meet Storm's ancestor, whom they immediately mistake for her descendant. Which is confusing because Storm's maternal family is from Kenya. According to the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe, Storm's maternal family is a line of sorceresses/priestesses descended from a primeval goddess-entity called "the Bright Lady" who is implied to be an incarnation of Gaea the Earth-Goddess. This line is marked by white hair, blue eyes, and bizarre supernatural talents. So in fact, all of Storm's ancestors look alike, and this is justified as a supernatural trait.
  • Patoruzú's father, Patoruzek I, looks just like him.
  • Gold Digger has an ancient barbarian ancestor of Gina Diggers who looks a lot like her, including circular tattoos around the eyes that look like Gina's big glasses.
  • Obelix's family tree, as seen in Asterix and the Class Act, consists entirely of "big-boned", red-mustached warriors. The modern-day Obelisc'h, whom the authors meet, even wears a blue-and-white striped jersey, reflecting his ancestor's stripey trousers.
    • In Asterix and the Golden Sickle, Obelix has a cousin (given, likely a quite distant one) who is tiny, almost down to Asterix size, and appears rather frail. He still has the characteristic red hair, though.
    • In Asterix and the Actress we are introduced to the pair's parents, with each father looking exactly like his son except for some wrinkles and white hair and the clothes. Their cloth patterns and colors (and in Obelix' case, his trademark braids) come from their respective mothers, on the other hand.
  • Averted in Preacher during the two Vietnam stories about Jesse's father John. Steve Dillon manages to give John a strong resemblance to Jesse while still making him look like a distinct character. (The difficulty in doing this may be one reason this trope is so prevalent.) Particularly nice given that Steve Dillon is known for drawing faces that all look alike.
  • In an early, pre Cerebus Syndrome issue of Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic is sent back in time to prehistoric Mobius, where he meets prehistoric versions of himself and the Freedom Fighters.
  • In Alan Moore's Tomorrow Stories, Cobweb and her sidekick Clarice are descended from priestesses who discovered the secret of parthenogenesis, so they're genetically identical to their ancestors.
  • In at least one Legion of Super-Heroes issue, the descendants of modern-day Lex Luthor and Mr. Mxyzptlk are found. They not only look identical and have the same abilities as their ancestors but are discriminated against by society because of what their ancestors did. The Legion and the stories surrounding it take place a thousand years in the future.
  • Captain Haddock's 17th-century ancestor Sir Francis Haddock (in the original: Francois, Chevalier de Hadoque) looked exactly like him, except for the longer hair appropriate for the period. He had a similar penchant for drinking and swearing.
  • In the Golden Age, Wonder Woman's mother Hippolyta resembled her enough that she could disguise herself as her daughter pretty easily. This idea was abandoned in the Silver Age when Hyppolyta suddenly started getting colored as a blonde.
    • But then brought back during the time where she was filling in for a missing Wonder Woman.
  • In the miniseries Captain America: Hail Hydra!, we see the history of Hydra from ancient Mesopotamia to the present day. The head of their immortality research is almost always a bald, bug-eyed man with a permanent Slasher Smile. Word of God is that this is the family line of Dr. Geist (the present-day version).
  • Two Captain America stories featured The American Revolution hero Captain Stephen Rogers, who looked identical to his descendant. In the second story, he briefly wore a costume created by a British Loyalist to satirize the American flag.
  • S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Sharon Carter looks identical to Peggy Carter, a hero of World War II and member of the French Resistance. Originally, the two were apparently sisters, until they were retconned to be aunt and niece, respectively.
  • In Enki Bilal's Nikopol Trilogy, Alcide Nikopol and his son (also named Alcide) look virtually identical, and since the former has spent the last thirty years frozen, they even look like they're the same age.

    Comic Strips 
  • In the run-up to the Bicentennial, Doonesbury ran comics where Zonker related tales of his Minuteman ancestor Nate Harris, who looked exactly like Zonker in colonial garb.
  • The Phantom is about 21 generations of identical men with identical personalities. Although it is hard to tell how physically alike they are under the costume aside from build. One story tells of a Phantom who was noticeably shorter and bulkier than the previous Phantoms and had to seriously modify the costume.
  • Mafalda once found a picture of a little girl very similar to her. She asked her mom and she answered "That's me" Mafalda surprisedly asks "Why didn't you tell me you used to be my sister?!"

    Fan Works 
  • In Diaries of a Madman, Cadance is a descendant of Sombra and mentioned to be the splitting image of Sombra's daughter.
  • The Meg's Family Series has Chris and Jillian's twins Tilly and C.J., the former taking after her mother aside from being brunette (Though Family reveals that Jillian is actually a natural brunette) and the latter taking after Chris (The narration even notes that he even sounds like Chris but higher pitched).
  • In Principal Celestias Family Reunion Here., it's the basis of the story. Every member of Celestia and Luna's family look like Celestia and Luna.
  • In Operation Epic Beer Run, a The Martian fic, Dr. Beck tells a story from his med school days and notes that one of the uncles he mentions in the story is often mistaken for his father since they look so much alike. It's never explicitly stated but strongly implied that this uncle is Bucky Barnes under a cover identity.
  • Implied in the RWBY fic Shard; when he first meets Pyrrha, Aero notices she looks very similar to Quinn, a friend of his from Totum, and asks if she has an ancestor by that name. Pyrrha doesn't know.
  • The main plot of Unexpected Surprise is kicked off when Adrien returns to Paris and finds a girl with Marinette's freckles... and his mother's face.
  • In the Avatar the Last Airbender one-shot Confusion from longing, which goes with the theory that some Air Nomads escaped the genocide by passing as other ethnicities. Aang notices that Ty Lee is the granddaughter of an Air Nomad friend of his due to their extremely close resemblance.

    Films — Animation 
  • In Coco, Miguel's straight-parted and messy bangs, Beauty Mark, and dimple makes him resemble his great-great-grandfather. It's Foreshadowing that it's Héctor who is Miguel's true great-great-grandfather, not Ernesto, who has curled bangs and slicked back hair. This also is a subtle plot point - this was how Coco was able to remember Héctor all these years, because her great-grandson reminded her of her father.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • I Married a Witch: Five generations of Wooley males over 270 years are all played by Fredric March.
  • Fredric March again in Smilin' Through, in which he plays the unbalanced Jeremy Wayne as well as Jeremy's far more sensible son Kenneth.
  • Robert Donat plays the 18th Century Scottish lad, Murdoch Glourie, and his descendant, Donald Glourie in The Ghost Goes West.
  • The Terminator films fall into this trope; in the original movie, all of the T-800 model Terminators looked (and even smelled) like different people, in order to infiltrate human bunkers (and get past sentry-dogs); but in the sequels, somehow all of the T-800 Terminators look like Arnold — despite that this defeats the entire premise of organic cyborg-Terminators, since the humans would only need to watch out for anyone who looks like Arnold. (The original movie even showed this; the T-800 Terminator shown in the original flashback-scene was played by bodybuilder Franco Columbu). The best way to explain this is that all T-800s are the same basic endoskeleton, while the model numbers (Arnold's Terminator identifies himself as model 101) refer to the external appearance. So, all 101s resemble Arnold Schwarzenegger, while 102s resemble someone else. This explains Franco Columbu, who has the same basic endo-skeleton but is essentially a different sub-model. This is explicitly described at the beginning of the novelization for Terminator 2: Judgment Day, where future John Connors looks for the right model of T-800 to send into the past.
  • Back to the Future:
    • No matter what timeline Marty McFly went to in the trilogy, his ancestors/descendants all resembled him or his mother (except for his father in the first movie). The same goes for his nemesis, Biff Tannen. In the animated series based on the films, wherever Doc and his family travel in time, they find identical and similarly named ancestors to Marty and his girlfriend Jennifer (who, ironically, does not look identical to herself, having been recast after the first film), including the age of dinosaurs.
    • It's worth noting that, according to Jeffrey Weissman (George in parts II and III), the role of great-grandfather Seamus McFly was originally written for Crispin Glover. In the Telltale game, Marty's grandfather Artie McFly does end up looking and sounding like Crispin Glover.
    • In Back to the Future Part III, Marty's ancestor Seamus McFly is identical to Marty (both are played by Michael J. Fox), but the ancestor's wife Maggie is identical to Marty's mother (both are played by Lea Thompson) despite not being her ancestor. Director Robert Zemeckis has stated that McFly men are just attracted to women who look like Lea Thompson.
    • About the only characters immune to this would be Doc (old enough that he appears in several time periods looking exactly the same) and Strickland (the Marshal is played by the same person as the Dean Bitterman, but pains are taken to make them look fairly different).
  • Sonny Chiba as various generations of "Hattori Hanzô" in Hattori Hanzô: Kage no Gundan on Japanese TV, and in the film Kill Bill, Vol. 1.
  • In Bicentennial Man, Embeth Davitz plays both the adult Amanda Martin (aka "Little Miss") and her granddaughter, Portia Charney. The movie's storyline covers 200 years, as suggested by the title.
  • In Return to Halloweentown, Sara Paxton plays both Marnie Piper and an ancestor, Splendora Cromwell.
  • In C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America, Larry Peterson plays several generations of affluent Confederate heroes.
  • Lampshaded in A Cock And Bull Story, an adaptation of the novel Tristram Shandy. Steve Coogan, who plays Shandy in the film-within-a-film, breaks the fourth wall in his role as narrator to explain that a particular scene is a flashback to his childhood in which he'll be playing the role of his own father.
  • in Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Hard Luck, this trope happens to Greg and his uncle Terrace.
  • In Fierce Creatures, Kevin Kline plays "most powerful man in the world" Rod McCain and his ne'er-do-well son Vince McCain, vice-president of his father's company, Octopus Inc.
  • In Hellraiser: Bloodline, the maker of the Lament Configuration and two of his descendants are played by the same actor. They're at least four generations apart each.
  • Sunshine does a triple whammy, with three generations of sons from a Hungarian family each being played by Ralph Fiennes with varying amounts of facial hair.
  • Partial example: In 2007's Beowulf, both Beowulf and his son, Wyrm, are played by the mighty Ray Winstone. Although they both look pretty different. To be fair his son did have gold skin and lacked the facial hair of his daddy. Otherwise, his physique is exactly what Beowulf's was like when he was younger (y'know, when he isn't all scaly and firebreathing).
  • Chiquititas: Rincon de Luz is a prequel to the TV series, showing the creation of the Rincon de Luz orphanage in the 19th century. All the ancestors of the main characters are played by the actors who played their descendants in the TV Series.
  • In Alien³, Lance Henriksen plays the designer of the Bishop android (although some theories consider him an android instead of a human). In AVP: Alien vs. Predator, set more than 150 years earlier, he plays Charles Bishop Weyland, the co-founder of the Weyland-Yutani Corporation and possible ancestor of the designer.
  • In Just Visiting, Christina Applegate plays both Jean Reno's fiancee and her present-day descendant.
    • The same is true in the original French film (with the same lead actors) Les Visiteurs.
    • This also serves to prove to him that he will find a way to get back to his own time and prevent his fiancee's/her father's death (depending on the version).
  • In Tremors 4: The Legend Begins, the 19th-century ancestor of Burt Gummer is played by Michael Gross, the same actor who plays Burt.
  • According to Word of God, Matthayus in The Scorpion King is not the Scorpion King of The Mummy Returns. Instead, the evil Scorpion King is Matthayus's identical descendant, both being played by The Rock. Originally, it was supposed to be him, but the creators felt that the ending of The Scorpion King was too hopeful to explain Matthayus suddenly turning evil.
  • In Stargate Continuum, Cameron Mitchell winds up interacting with his suspiciously familiar-looking grandfather. To the makeup department's credit, at least the grandfather was wearing some latex appliances so the two characters didn't look identical.
    • Not only do they interact, but the photo in Mitchell's locker in the new reality also shows that the two were good friends. Wonder how many people commented that they look like brothers.
  • The title character of the silent film Don Q: Son of Zorro was played by Douglas Fairbanks Sr., who had previously starred in the silent film The Mark of Zorro.
  • In the musical film Cover Girl, Rita Hayworth plays her character's grandmother in a flashback.
  • Catherine and her daughter Cathy from the 1992 Wuthering Heights film look absolutely identical, except that Catherine is a brunette while Cathy is a blonde. Which is weird, because in the book Cathy looks nothing like her mother except for her eyes.
  • The ancestor that Forrest Gump was named after (KKK founder Nathan Bedford Forrest) is also played by Tom Hanks; Lieutenant Dan's ancestors are all played by Gary Sinise.
    • Same goes for all of Bubba's maternal ancestors from the mid-19th century to his mother. However, it's likely that all of the scenes these ancestors appear in show just how Forrest imagines them, not how they really looked like.
  • Dracula A.D. 1972 has this going on with the Van Helsings, both played by Peter Cushing. The unnamed lackey of Dracula in 1872 is played by Christopher Neame, who also plays 20th-century Dracula-cultist Johnny Alucard, although their relationship is not spelled out.
  • Eddie Murphy typically plays all the members of his characters' families, though they always have quite differentiated costume elements.
  • Knowing has Lucinda in the opening scenes (set in 1959) and Abby, her granddaughter from fifty years later, played by the same actress.
  • Ginger Snaps Back: The Beginning follows the 19th-century ancestors of the two main characters from the other films in the series. As per this trope, they're played by the same actresses as their present-day counterparts, in addition, they also have the exact same names.
  • Letters to Juliet ends with a Lorenzo looking identical to the one remembered so must be that one's grandfather.
  • Jason tries to get away with this in Mystery Team, hoping a fake mustache will convince the principal that he's his father.
  • That Lady in Ermine, Countess Angelina and her ancestor, Francesca.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III features April O'Neil traveling back to samurai times and finding a fellow prisoner who is apparently Casey Jones' ancestor. A rat then comes along who is presumably Splinter's ancestor.
  • Michael Dorn cameos in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country as Worf's grandfather, a defense attorney who, despite being stuck in the middle of a blatant Kangaroo Court, still makes a valiant effort to give his clients (Kirk and Bones) something approaching a fair trial.
    • It's worth noting that the designers attempted a partial subversion by making the grandfather's Klingon forehead ridges less pronounced than Worf's and his hair thinner, which more realistically account for changes in the family gene pool over two generations. Worf and his brother, Kurn (played by Tony Todd), share the same ridges.
  • Who's Harry Crumb? features the titular character (played by John Candy) coming from a long line of great detectives (which he himself isn't). When we're shown their portraits at the agency, they all look like Harry with slight clothing/hair differences (yes, including the size).
  • A flashback in Beerfest reveals that Todd Wolfhouse looks identical to his great-grandfather Baron Ludwig von Wolfhousen (same actor). Later on, they have Todd stand near a portrait of Ludwig to show the family resemblance.
  • A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child. In Alice's dream of how Amanda Krueger was raped, one of the 100 maniacs looks exactly like pre-death Freddy Krueger, and is played by Robert Englund as well. Before Alice is assaulted by the maniacs, a shot briefly lingers on his face, hinting that this is, in fact, Freddy's biological father. It's also hinted that this is actually Freddy himself in disguise, although why he would take on the guise of his father is unclear.
  • G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra:
    • Averted, but not through design. Irish actor David Murray was originally cast to play Destro but could not take the role due to problems with his visa. He only had time to play the McCullen ancestor from the beginning of the film before his visa expired. Christopher Eccleston ended up playing the role of the modern McCullen/Destro, and while he and Murray look somewhat similar, they at least aren't clones of each other.
    • Played Straight with Sergeant Stone, according to Brendan Frasier, he's a descendant of Rick O'Connell.
  • In St. Trinian's 2: The Legend of Fritton's Gold, David Tennant plays the present day Sir Piers Pomfrey and his ancestor Lord Pomfrey, and Rupert Everett plays Miss Fritton and her ancestors Archibald Fritton and Fortnum Fritton.
  • The Devil's Advocate: The Devil's true form as a Fallen Angel has the exact same face as his male offspring. Justified, since he is a divine being and his son a Nephilim.
  • The Haunted Palace, Roger Corman's 1963 adaptation of The Case of Charles Dexter Ward, not only cast Vincent Price as Charles Ward and his warlock ancestor Joseph Curwen, but also used the same actors to play both the men who'd burned Curwen at the stake and their descendants whom he returned from the grave to take revenge upon.
  • In The Son of the Sheik Rudolph Valentino plays both Sheik Ahmed and his grown son, Ahmed the younger.
  • In the Trancers movies, people go back in time mentally to occupy the mind of a direct ancestor. All those ancestors are played by the same actors. Probably to avoid confusing the audience.
  • In Conquest of the Planet of the Apes and Battle for the Planet of the Apes Roddy McDowell plays Caesar, the son of Cornelius—who was played by McDowell in Planet of the Apes (1968) and Escape from the Planet of the Apes. (McDowell was Other Darrin'ed in Beneath the Planet of the Apes.)
  • The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug has a Downplayed example: Bard and his ancestor Girion are both played by Luke Evans, but unless you know it already, you won't recognize him as Girion under heavy prosthetics and make-up.
  • Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine has Dr. Goldfoot (played by Vincent Price), show off portraits of his ancestors, roles played by Price in other movies.
  • In the 1955 Daddy-Long-Legs, Jervis Pendleton III has his identity revealed by the portraits of his father and grandfather.
  • She (1935 version): Randolph Scott plays Leo Vincey, the hero, and John Vincey, his ancient ancestor who he may be a reincarnation of.
  • She (1965 version): John Richardson plays Leo Vincey, the hero, and Kallikrates, his ancient Greek ancestor who he may be a reincarnation of.
  • Assassin's Creed (2016): Justified just like the games due to the Animus which makes Callum appear identical to his ancestor Aguilar.
  • Three Brothers: The same actor who plays Rocco also plays Rocco's father Donato in the flashback.
  • In Dont Give Up The Ship, Jerry Lewis plays not only the protagonist John Paul Steckler VII but, in vignettes, John Paul Steckler I and John Paul Steckler IV.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe: In Captain America: The First Avenger, Kenneth Choi plays WWII hero Jim Morita. In Spider-Man: Homecoming, Choi plays Principal Morita, who is Jim's grandson (Jim's medals and a photo of him are displayed in his office).
  • A plot point in Baahubali; Sivudu/Mahendra's resemblance to his father Amarendra makes him instantly recognizable to the people of Mahishmati.
  • The Basque film Vacas ("Cows") follows two families of cowherds from 1875 to 1936. Main actor Carmelo Gómez plays the grandfather, father, and son of the Irigibel family; Kandido Uranga plays Carmelo Mendiluze and his son Juan, and Karra Elejalde plays their neighbor Ilegorri and his son, Lucas (with both appearing together in the 1936 segment).
  • Let's Make Love begins with narrated drawings about a rich man's family, many who resemble Yves Montand, who plays that rich man.
  • Vamps: Goody pretends she's her past self's daughter when old flame Danny (who knew her in the '60s) sees her again. Later, her female descendant (who Alicia Silverstone also plays) looks very much like her too, only with a different hair color/hairstyle.
  • In Headless Horseman, Sgt. Mosby Rusk is identical to his descendant Pa Rusk. Possibly justified as the Rusk family is drawing from a very limited gene pool.

  • In A Brother's Price Jerin resembles his grandfather enough to prove that they're related. Apparently, that's where Jerin gets his good looks from.
  • In the Dune saga, where Miles Teg is noted for his resemblance to his millennia-dead ancestor Duke Leto Atreides I. The character himself has noted that he has found looking at portraits of Leto I to be like looking into a mirror. Being a servant of the Bene Gesserit, Miles' resemblance was deliberately bred in.
  • In the Harry Potter saga, where Harry is noted for his resemblance to his father but with his mother's eyes. Later subverted when we get a detailed picture of what James Potter actually looked like at Harry's age; the resemblance is strong enough that they could be mistaken for one another at a distance or from behind, but stood side by side it would be fairly obvious which was which even without the eye-color difference.
    • Albus Potter turns out to be the spitting image of Harry, green eyes and all.
  • Caraval has an identical granddaughter. Tella is described as having a round face with honey-blonde hair. This is exactly how their grandmother is said to have looked when she was young.
  • Justified Trope via Applied Phlebotinum: In H. P. Lovecraft's short novel The Case of Charles Dexter Ward, the eponymous character notices his uncanny resemblance to the portraits of his sorcerous ancestor, Joseph Curwen, who apparently cast a spell that ensured one of his descendants would look like him, inherit his knowledge, and be compelled to attempt to resurrect him. Shorty after Curwen has been resurrected by Ward, the sorcerer kills the young man, and proceeds to masquerade as him.
  • G. K. Chesterton's Father Brown stories:
    • In "The Doom of the Darnaways", Chesterton subverts the trope: Father Brown concludes that the painting of the ancestor was a fraud, being a painting of the heir so that he would appear to have such a resemblance to the ancestor.
    • In "The Worst Crime in the World", Sir John Musgrave and his son Captain James Musgrave share a family resemblance strong enough that the son can kill his father and impersonate him by shaving his beard and wearing a wig.
  • In The Hound of the Baskervilles, Jack Stapleton looks exactly like his ancestor, Hugo Baskerville, except without "the broad plumed hat, the curling love-locks, [and] the white lace collar."
  • In the Discworld book Faust Eric, by Terry Pratchett, Rincewind (and his demonology hacker companion) travels back to a fantasy counterpart of the Trojan War, where he meets a brave sensibly devious adventurer named Lavaeolus. He does not realize the relationship until later but notes that Lavaeolus looks very handsome. It is implied that Lav is an ancestor of Rincewind's (and in Dog Latin it is revealed that Lavaeolus means "rinser of winds").
    • Unfortunately, the illustrations don't reflect this.
  • Lampshaded in the third Pendragon book. A young minor character that Bobby Pendragon and friends meet in 1937 is still alive in the present. In order to explain why they haven't aged at all, Bobby's friend Gunny tells him that they're the grandsons of the people he met in 1937.
  • In Welkin Weasels, Sylver's descendants all bear his lightning-bolt birthmark. Mawk and Scirf's descendants Maudlin and Scruff apparently fall under this trope as well, as Monty is able to instantly guess exactly which members of the outlaw band were their ancestors.
  • In the Liaden Universe, when Miri Robertson goes to the home of her long lost family, a portrait of her grandmother Miri Tiazan reveals that she's a dead ringer for the original. It actually takes her a moment to realize that it isn't a mirror.
  • The Doctor Who Past Doctor Adventures novel The Eleventh Tiger teases the idea that Ian Chesterton has crossed his own timestream as the amnesiac Major Chesterton, before revealing the Major is actually Ian's Identical Great-Great-Grandfather.
    • And in the Eighth Doctor Adventures book The Taint, Fritz's great-grandfather's Obliviously Evil twin is recognizably similar to Fitz himself: same long nose, straggly hair, and thin face and build. Fitz keeps finding him "infuriatingly familiar", quite possibly because he's looking at an older (but not that much, for some reason) version of the same face he shaves (or not) every morning. Also, unsettlingly, he has moments of acting like a Psychopathic Manchild version of Fitz.
  • Justified in the Coldfire Trilogy: after selling his soul for undead immortality, the Hunter dropped in on his family every so often, killing all of them except the one who looked most like him. (Vanity being one of his defining character traits.) Fast-forward nine hundred years or and you have descendants who still look exactly like him. Possibly helped along by the fact that the ambient wild magic is more than capable of warping genetics.
  • The title character of Indigo mistakes Veness for Fenran at first glance. And then falls for him on his own virtues. Meaning, that he dies.
  • In Robert E. Howard's "Kings of the Night", Bran Mak Morn looks so much like his ancestor Brule that Kull takes him for him. Despite a few intervening millennia.
  • Subverted in Everything Is Illuminated, in which every time the statue of the ancestor needs a touch-up, it is made to look like the current male heir.
  • The protagonist in The Misenchanted Sword by Lawrence Watt-Evans realizes that there will be problems when he starts not dying, so he writes a will, heads off for adventure, "dies," and returns as the "relative named in the will."
  • Gregory McDonald's Carioca, Fletch plays with this by having the protagonist in Brazil, where he uncannily resembles a light-skinned Brazilian who was murdered decades before. All except Fletch believe he is the reincarnation, including the murderer, who tries again. Fletch even dreams of characters of Brazilian mythology he had not known about.
  • Apparently, Hope Cahill is nearly identical to her ancestor, Madeleine Cahill—who lived several hundred years before Hope.
  • The Ashkevron family in the Heralds of Valdemar series. A character even comments that "The Ashkevron family look tends to breed true, and when it doesn't the poor thing generally runs off to Haven." On one occasion a young woman of that family shows up at the capital and identifies an aunt she had never even met with "You must be Savil, you have the nose."
  • Used as the basis of Robert Sheckley's story "Double Indemnity": a man time-travels to the past to find his ancestor, since said ancestor looks almost exactly like him, which would allow him to pose as the man's time-travel mishap-born clone (for sake of an insurance scam). Apparently, the man's criteria for choosing the right ancestor was simply "someone who would not be missed", and the only reason he rejects several candidates is because they happen to have acquired differences (missing an arm, covered with pox) — implying that every single one of his ancestors is identical.
  • Speculated about in Gilded Latten Bones, when a suspect's sketch is recognized to be identical to a man forty years dead. Subverted, as it turns out to be the original man, who'd been Faking the Dead and using age-reversal magic.
  • In "The Heroes of Olympus" Leo is the spitting image of his great grandfather Sammy, Hazel Levesque's best friend and crush in the 1940s
  • In the Warrior Cats series, in the Super Edition Firestar's Quest, Firestar realizes that Tigerstar and Spottedleaf are distantly descended from SkyClan when in a dream he sees the kits of an ancient SkyClan leader that look identical to them.
    • A female example with Sparkpaw, who is described as being a clone of her grandfather, Firestar.
  • In one of the appendices of The Lord of the Rings, it's mentioned that the Longbeard dwarves will sometimes produce an heir who resembles their original ancestor Durin so much that they not only name him Durin but believe that he is the same Durin, returned to them. Up to Durin VII are recorded as Kings of Durin's Folk, it's unclear if this practice is maintained outside of the direct line of succession.
    • Arwen is said to be extremely similar to her great-great-grandmother, Luthien Tinuviel. Overlaps with Generation Xerox as both women choose to relinquish their immortality for love of a mortal man.
  • In The Stone Prince, Demnor is this to his great-uncle, causing his grandfather and mother to distrust him because they consider the uncle to have been weak.
  • Septimus Heap: Physik: Jenna is often confused with her distant ancestor Esmeralda.
  • In Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey, the Thorpes describe Catherine as the image of her brother, whom they know. Catherine, on the other hand, expects Henry and Eleanor's mother's portrait to look very like one or the other of them, from reading novels in which a portrait looks as much like the child as the mother, and finds it not very close at all.
  • In The History of the Galaxy series, John Mitchell St. Ivo looks almost exactly like his great-grandfather Erlik St. Ivo, the founder of Galactic Cybersystems thanks to several generations of inbreeding starting with Erlik himself, who married his cousin Liza in order to maintain the secrecy of the company (whose headquarters and automated production lines were located on a remote, uninhabited world). Erlik and Liza had a son and a daughter, whose DNA they modified so they weren't genetically related, allowing the children to continue the line. Apparently, the fact that they still had the same parents and were raised as brother and sister didn't create any issues. This continued until the birth of André St. Ivo, whose intelligence was far below normal. Realizing a fresh "infusion" of blood was necessary to keep the family (and the business) going, André's parents didn't have a second child, forcing him to look for a bride on other worlds. André ended up marrying Theia Mitchell, who wound up effectively running Galactic Cybersystems and gave birth to two healthy sons: Aramant (who looked exactly like André) and John. André, jealous of Theia, has her shot and then her almost-dead body turned into a bio-doll for his pleasure. Meanwhile, Aramant is groomed as André's successor, while John grows up as a Rich Idiot with No Day Job. One day, Aramant finds out the truth about his mother, who was kept in stasis while André wasn't using her body and tries to wake her. Thanks to his resemblance to his father, he is killed by Theia who manages to break her mental conditioning who doesn't know how much time has passed. John ends up mortally wounded by André's robots and has his mind copied onto an android, who was modeled on Erlik St. Ivo. Given that John looks like Erlik, this turns out to be a happy coincidence.
  • Beatrice Löwenström in Överenskommelser by Simona Ahrnstedt had obviously inherited both her appearance and her personality from her paternal grandmother. The resemblance is mentioned no less than four times.
  • In The Lost Prince, the Lost Prince's present-day descendant bears a striking resemblance to the surviving portrait of his distinguished ancestor considering the number of intervening generations. Many Samavians choose to take this as a sign that the Lost Prince has been reincarnated to return in person, which makes as much sense as any other explanation.
  • In Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, Jacob looks much like his grandfather Abraham did at his age. They are not identical, but Miss Peregrine remarks on the similarities, and it's enough to make Emma's crush on Jacob at least a little creepy.
  • In The Changing Land, the resurrected priestess Semirama helps the protagonist because he happens to be the spitting image of his ancestor, who was her lover.
  • This is how Sherlock Holmes reveals the motive for murder in The Hound of the Baskervilles. Once such details as hairstyle and dress are cut out, the murderer bears such a strong resemblance to an old portrait of Hugo Baskerville that he must be a direct descendant, and therefore in line to inherit once Sir Charles and Sir Henry are out of the way.
  • In The Vampire Chronicles, Jessica Reeves is said to bear a striking resemblance to her distant ancestress Maharet, despite them being six thousand years apart.
  • In The Pillars of the Earth, Jack looks enough like his own father to be mistaken for his father's ghost when he inadvertently visits his father's old home town.
  • In The Babysitters Club, one of the later books has Claudia thinking she might be adopted due to some flimsy circumstantial evidence. When she finally talks to her parents about it, they assure her that she's not - and as proof, they show her old photographs of her beloved grandmother Mimi, who looked exactly like Claudia when she was young.
  • In the Aubrey-Maturin series, Sam Panda, Jack Aubrey's illegitimate black son, is described as "the spit, the counterpart, the image of Jack Aubrey with some twenty years and several stone taken off, done in shining ebony," although their noses are mentioned as being different. It's enough so that everyone immediately realizes who he is.
  • In the fifth Diary of a Wimpy Kid book, we meet Greg's second cousin once removed who looked exactly like Greg when he was the latter's age.

    Print Media 
  • A 1989 issue of Radio Times commemorated the bicentennial of The French Revolution with an 'Allo 'Allo! story about an ancestor of Rene who was involved in the revolution as reluctantly as Rene himself was involved in La Résistance. This was illustrated with caricatures of Rene's actor, Gordon Kaye, in period costume.

    Pro Wrestling 

  • Sunday in the Park with George has a double whammy: the actors who play painter Georges Seurat and his fictional mistress Dot in Act I play Georges and Dot's daughter Marie (in old lady makeup) and Marie's grandson George in Act II. The rest of the cast plays new roles, too, but that's more a matter of economy.
  • Reversed, but essentially the same: In a (frequently cut) scene from the final act of Angels in America, Prior meets the spirit of Louis' grandmother Sarah, whose funeral was one of the first scenes in the show. Kushner specifically states in the published script that Sarah is to be played by the actor who plays Louis, though obviously in some kind of costume and makeup.
  • The play Coram Boy has two actors playing one character, Alexander Ashbrooke—one is a girl who plays him as a young man, and in the first act it switches in a brilliant piece of staging to being a man that plays him. The actress who played Alexander as a young man returns in the second act as his son, Aaron.
  • The action of Arcadia is set in both the early nineteenth and late twentieth centuries. When the play is staged, the same actor is used to play Augustus, a character from the nineteenth century, and Gus, from the twentieth. It's not explicitly stated that the latter is directly descended from the former, but they are certainly related. (There is also a possibility that they are intended to actually be the same character.)
  • Most productions of Show Boat which don't outright cut the Eleven O'Clock Number will have it performed by the same actress playing Magnolia in the person of her daughter Kim. (Kim also appears earlier as a child, and in the final tableau as an extra turned away from the audience.)
  • In the original stage version of Auntie Mame the actor who plays young Patrick Dennis for the first half of the show reappears as adult Patrick's son in the final scene.
  • In Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the young version of Hermione is played by the same actor as her daughter Rose. Scorpius even mistakes her for Rose.

    Video Games 
  • An early plot point in the game Chrono Trigger is the fact that Marle, a princess from 1000 A.D., looks exactly like her ancestor Queen Leene from 600 A.D.
  • In Day of the Tentacle, you travel into the future and meet people who look suspiciously like Nurse Edna, Doctor Fred, and Weird Ed, but they call themselves "Nurse Zedna," "Doctor Zed" and "Weird Zed." They're the descendants of the original Maniac Mansion characters.
    • Additionally, traveling to the past results in encounters with Red Edison, Dr. Fred Edison's identical ancestor (wearing a powdered wig, of course).
  • Adelheid Bernstein (son of the evil Rugal Bernstein from The King of Fighters) is a younger Rugal minus the mustache.
  • Tales of Phantasia has three generations of this, due to the three time periods. Each time period has its own member of the Morrison family, all of whom use the same sprite with only the clothes being different (and that's just a color swap). In addition, two characters from a sidequest in the "past" section of the game have descendants who grow up to look just like the original characters.
  • Used in the Metal Gear series with Big Boss and his three clone sons. Solid Snake and Liquid Snake in Metal Gear Solid are mirror images of each other, but with different skin tones and hairstyles, while Solidus Snake in Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, who has the same face as Solid Snake, is said to resemble the elder Big Boss from the early Metal Gear games. In contrast, Naked Snake, the young Big Boss from Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, resembles the young Solid Snake from the MGS titles.
    • It is later averted though, in MGS4. When Big Boss shows up in the epilogue, he looks very different from Old Snake, with a different voice actor. However, Old Snake is an imperfect clone of Big Boss, and his accelerated aging combined with FOXDIE, his facial damage in the Volta River fire and his physical ailments could have simply taken him biologically in a different direction.
    • Also, except for the latter's wheelchair, Otacon is the image of his father, Huey, complete with the same style of glasses.
  • Harvest Moon:
    • The Japanese version of Harvest Moon DS has this trope happening with every single "familiar" character in the game, practically falling under Generation Xerox as well, as their personalities and backstories are nearly identical to those of their ancestors. The only major difference? Their names, but even those tended to be blatant offshoots of the originals. Lazy, lazy developers!
      • Also, they didn't have all the depressing, realistic backstories and plots that made the "Wonderful Life" series so unique. They're happy-go-lucky, with little to no problems. Plus, they're personalities are quite different; much more shallow and boring, then their AWL and FOMT grandparents.
      • They also wear the same clothing and wedding clothing as their (great?) grandparents. The bachelors and bachelorettes in A(N)WL don't wear wedding attire in-game but they have official art of the latter in wedding dresses. DS uses these clothes for their weddings.
    • Harvest Moon: Tree of Tranquility combines this with the New Game+. Your child, regardless of who you married, can grow up to look exactly like you (or the opposite gender PC, depending on gender) and set off to start a farm on an island suspiciously identical to your own in every way, down to the inhabitants.
    • Back in Harvest Moon 64 you were the Identical Grandson of the original protagonist, from the SNES game. Your bachelorettes look extremely similar to the original ones, minus Karen who only has her grandmother's blonde hair (her bangs).
  • Dr. Eggman from the Sonic the Hedgehog series looks almost exactly like his grandfather, Gerald Robotnik. Eggman Nega, who claims to be Eggman's descendant from the future in Sonic Rivals also looks exactly like Eggman, except his mustache is gray and he wears newer clothes.
  • Captain Price in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare looks exactly like Captain Price of World War II-era Call of Duty 1 and 2, right down to the righteous mustache and badass attitude.
    • He's never really stated or implied to be the descendant of the original Captain Price. It's possible that he's just a Recurring Character who happens to have immortality. On multiple levels.
      • A developer for Infinity Ward, Sami Onur, gave some Word of God on the matter. He said that the Modern Warfare Price is intended to be the grandson of the World War II Captain Price. There have been a few rather sneaky references to the actual character's origin, however (for instance, one of the final Modern Warfare 2 cutscenes makes it clear that Price still has the Call of Duty 1-specific dedicated pistol slot, containing the same incorrect-for-his-country M1911).
    • The Call of Duty 4 Captain Price is remarkably less polite than his predecessor, it must be said. They also sound rather different (Billy Murray for modern Price, compared to Michael Gough (not that one for WW2 Price).
  • Link and Zelda appear again and again… only they're not quite the same Link nor Zelda. Though only one Link has been confirmed to be the direct descendant of another, it's implied in Zelda II: The Adventure of Link and in The Wind Waker that the green-clad hero and noble lady of the royal line may be reincarnated again and again. Zelda II actually has Link set out on a quest by Princess Zelda to wake one of her predecessors, also named Princess Zelda, from a deep sleep.
    • Although similar, Link and Zelda don't exactly look identical in each game. For instance, though Zelda has been bright-blonde in most of the post-Ocarina games, her Twilight Princess look is dirty-blonde/brunette.
    • In Oracle of Ages, anyone who was actually surprised that Ralph is Queen Ambi's grandson clearly has never looked at the character art— they're both Significant Green Eyed Redheads with forked eyebrows and a penchant for the color blue. Gender, age, and clothing aside, the only visual difference between them is that Ambi has Tareme Eyes and Ralph has Tsurime Eyes.
    • Spirit Tracks has Linebeck III as a literal example, who looks exactly like his grandad from Phantom Hourglass. Zelda herself lacks the strong tan and Odango-esque hairstyle of her great-great-grandmother (though they do look the same when dressed up). Link looks the same, although we don't exactly know if he's actually related to Wind Waker Link. In fact, a lot of characters in Spirit Tracks bear resemblance to their potential ancestors from Phantom Hourglass and Wind Waker.
    • In The Wind Waker, Hyrule Castle has a portrait of Princess Zelda with her retainers. You might find that these pira—er, retainers look a bit familiar to Tetra's crew. Daphnes Nohansen Hyrule also has a suspiciously similar-looking ancestor by the name of Daltus in The Minish Cap (who himself has an identical ancestor named Gustaf).
    • Skyward Sword introduces two minor ones, both shopkeepers: the fortune-teller Sparrot, ancestor of Twilight Princess's Madame Fanadi, and yet another incarnation of Beedle. This is a somewhat interesting case, as the next appearances of these likenesses occur many hundreds of years after this game, meaning either their family lines managed to keep their heads down for all that time or that it's not just Link and Zelda who get reincarnated.
  • In Golden Sun: Dark Dawn, Matthew and Tyrell are the spitting images of their fathers, Isaac and Garet, as teenagers. Several other characters are also descended from the previous games' cast, but they're not quite as blatant as these two.
    • Except Amiti, who despite dressing and acting completely differently is still mistaken for… someone in a mask… by an NPC in Tonfon Palace.
  • The Breath of Fire series beats this trope to death.
  • Subversion: if Jimbo and Sully from Contra III: The Alien Wars looked way too much like Bill and Lance from the original arcade/NES games, that's because they are Bill and Lance. In the Japanese continuity, the series always took place in the future, so there was never any need to change main characters, but in the original American continuity the earlier games were moved from the future to the present, forcing the name change for the main characters when the SNES installment kept the futuristic setting.
  • The Belmonts from the earlier Castlevania games, namely Simon, Christopher, and Trevor, strongly resembled each other, but this can be justified since the original games were for 8-bit platforms like the NES, MSX, and Game Boy, which weren't exactly known for their graphical prowess. Richter Belmont from the PC Engine's Castlevania: Rondo of Blood, was the first Belmont to actually look different from his predecessors and every Belmont afterward (whether it was from a sequel or prequel) followed suit.
  • The Guy from I Wanna Be the Guy looks almost the same as his son the Kid, except that he's four times as big, has a different facial expression and smokes a cigarette.
  • Shadow of Destiny is made of this trope. In every era, there are people who resemble the citizens in the other eras. In fact, the main character even lampshades this once. The game ends up subverting it once, however, in the biggest plot twist of the game. A character you spend most of the game assuming is your ancestor (though he doesn't exactly resemble you) turns out to be ''you''.
  • Assassin's Creed
    • In both Assassin's Creed I and Assassin's Creed II, Altaïr and Ezio look exactly like the protagonist Desmond Miles. All three of them even have a perfectly identical scar on their mouth. It's justified in that the interface with which Desmond sees their memories, the Animus, is patching his face partially over theirs, for familiarity.
    • This trope has become less pronounced as the series has gone on. In Revelations, Desmond looks little like Ezio, Altaïr or Altaïr's children. By Assassin's Creed III the similarities have almost entirely disappeared: there's a certain family resemblance but neither Connor nor Haytham Kenway look like Desmond. Edward Kenway from Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag doesn't resemble Desmond in any way.
  • Phantasy Star Zero manages to pull this one under the radar. Ogi and Nicolas both ask you if you're 200+ years old early in the game (which is outright preposterous unless you're a CAST). Later, you get a video from before the Great Blank that shows someone identical to you in the battle before the aforementioned catastrophe. The third instance crops up when you encounter Mother Trinity, who has a sudden realization just who you really are. She takes it pretty well. No, really.
  • In Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box, the resemblance between Katia and her grandmother, Sophia, is so strong that even the game's main antagonist confuses the two. Considering that he's mistaking Katia for his estranged lover and he's really her grandfather, it's no wonder the poor girl gets a little distressed before she finally gets a chance to explain.
  • Sam & Max: The Devil's Playhouse:
    • In the episode "The Tomb of Sammun-Mak," you play as their grandfathers, Sameth and Maximus.
    • Nicholas St. Kringle is implied to be the ancestor of Santa Claus.
  • Mai Shiranui, if Gen-An's ending in the first Samurai Shodown is to be believed.
  • This is Baby Bowser from Yoshi's Island and Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time. This is Bowser Junior from Super Mario Sunshine, Super Mario Galaxy and New Super Mario Bros.
  • The Way of the Samurai games use this enable The Blacksmith Dojima to appear in every game (As they take place 20 to 300 years apart).
  • Inazuma Eleven, the Endou family members who are related to soccer are looking the very similar: Daisuke, Mamoru, and Kanon.
  • A budgetary necessity in the original Myst; the three characters with speaking roles were all played by the game's directors, Rand and Robyn Miller. Rand played both Atrus and his villainous son, Achenar; for the latter, he took off his glasses, mussed up his hair and beard, changed costumes, and spoke in a higher-pitched borderline-Ax-Crazy voice (he gave Atrus a lower and more gravelly voice to increase the contrast).
  • In Tecmo's Deception, you eventually hear word of a Legendary Brave who shares the same name as your own character, who was among those who sealed away the Devil in the past. You're eventually given the task of killing him and subsequently find out that he is your ancestor; whether you go through with it affects the ending.
  • Leisure Suit Larry's great-grandfather shows up in Freddy Pharkas: Frontier Pharmacist: Zircon Laffer.
  • Female kangaroo villagers in the Animal Crossing games all have little joeys who peek out from inside their pouches. The joeys are not only identical to their mothers but also share all of their mothers' facial expressions.
  • Ricardo Chellini, the protagonist of Shiver: Poltergeist, notes a close resemblance between himself and the erstwhile (and similarly-named) heir of the Kangale family, Richard, whose Old, Dark House Ricardo has just inherited. The resident poltergeist doesn't seem to like Ricardo at all
  • Possible to pull off in Fire Emblem Fates if Selena is married off to Subaki. Caeldori then looks like a dead ringer for her maternal grandmother Cordelia. She and her mother even get unique Supports regarding this trope that she doesn't get with any other potential mother. Unfortunately, this can only be done in the Golden Path.
    • Another example is Ophelia, who looks a lot like her paternal grandmother, Lissa. The resemblance is even greater should she have a blonde mother, and this can be done on either the Conquest or Revelation route.
    • In the Heirs of Fate DLC it's noted that Shigure looks like his very distant ancestor the first king of Valla.
  • This serves to advance the plot in Super Mario RPG. When the group enters the sculptor's house in Nimbus Land they find a statue that looks just like resident Black Mage Mallow. The sculptor tells them it's a statue of King Nimbus as a kid. Which makes everyone realize Mallow is the legitimate prince of Nimbus Land and that the one presented by Valentina is a fake.
  • This trope is key to solving a puzzle in The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky. In order to gain access to the services and records on the Liber Ark, the party needs to unlock the encryption lock on a Gospel which among other things, functions as an ID. The problem lies in the fact that it's genetically keyed to the owner's records make it impossible even for the local Genius Ditz to crack. As it turns out, Kloe is descended from someone who had an account: Celeste D. Auslese. The ancestor in question had been dead for nearly twelve centuries. Interestingly, the computer claims that she bears a 72% match to Celeste herself.
  • Ren Hojo from Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water is related to Dr. Kunihiko Asou through a branch family and so bares a strong resemblance to him as well. Said resemblance causes the spirits who had met Dr. Asou while they were alive to mistake Ren as Dr. Asou, treating him with kindness instead of murderous hostility that he would have received otherwise. For example, Ouse Kurosawa never attacks Ren due to his resemblance to Dr. Asou, as she fell in love with Dr. Asou upon their initial encounter while they were alive.
  • In Sword of the Samurai none of your descendants are visible - until you die and one of them replaces you, at which point the new head of the family always looks completely identical to the previous one. This is mostly averted with the AI-controlled families, although the limited number of portraits means that once in a while this will happen to them as well.
  • In one of the more egregious examples of this trope, Lunar: Eternal Blue features a certain shopkeeper in Meribia named Ramus, who is a descendant of the original Ramus from Lunar: The Silver Star. The two of them look identical (right down to their girth), have the same name (it's apparently a family tradition now), run the exact same store (which looks almost completely unchanged from the first game) and even wear the exact same clothes and glasses. Did we mention that Eternal Blue is set over 1000 years after the events of the original game?
  • In Beyond Skyrim it is possible to meet Harald Burdsson, a descendant of Captain Burd from The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, and he rather resembles his famous ancestor.
  • This trope factors into a side quest in Dragon Age: Inquisition. The Inquisitor can accept a request to find evidence that Fairbanks, the local King of the Homeless, is really of noble birth. One of the pieces of evidence to be collected is a portrait of his grandfather, of whom Fairbanks is the spitting image.
  • If the description of The Ancestor's Portrait is to be believed, The Heir bears an Uncanny Family Resemblance to The Ancestor.

    Visual Novels 
  • Kori, from Time Hollow, ends up in a relationship with the protagonist's uncle, after sending him back through time to save her from certain death. In the present day, after the credits, we meet a girl who looks exactly like Kori, implied to be her daughter.
  • In Umineko: When They Cry, Genji remarks that Battler looks a lot like Kinzo used to back when he was young. He is not wrong. This is taken further when Battler's hair turns white in Twilight of the Golden Witch and he cuts it short, taking the "damn-near" out of damn-near identical.

    Web Animation 
  • Vic and Vic Jr. (who was multiple generations removed) in Red vs. Blue use identical models and voice actors. This is played for laughs more than anything else. Later seasons strongly imply that not only was Vic Jr. actually just Vic being deceptive but that Vic wasn't even human. Later confirmed that VIC is an AI created to oversee the simulation troopers. He was originally serious and businesslike, until Agent Florida (AKA Captain Butch Flowers) accidentally knocked out his power cable, resulting in data corruption and personality changes.

  • In Dragon City, Erin and Beatrix look like blue and green versions of their father Sam (respectively, though Trixie turns out to actually be his granddaughter), and Jonas looks like a red version of their mother Rachel. Rachel and her sister Sarah look like their mother, too.
  • In Jix, Lauren's daughter, Alice, in flashforwards look like a young version of Lauren.
  • In Narbonic, versions of Helen, Dave, and Mell appear each generation. Partly justified as the Helens are cloning themselves.
  • The Order of the Stick: Elan and Nale's father is depicted exactly like his sons, only with gray hair due to age, and brown hair in flashbacks (though it is hard to tell).
  • Irregular Webcomic!'s Ishmael's grandfather is identical to him. Same with the Mythbusters. Well, kinda. They're actually each other's grandfathers, thanks to abuse of the My Own Grandpa trope, and therefore their own great-great grandfathers. The grandfathers we see turn out to be unrelated to the Mythbusters at all.
  • Gunnerkrigg Court's Antimony and her mother. There's a very good reason for this.
  • Coney Dewclaw, the carnivorous rabbit in Kevin & Kell, looks exactly like her grandmother Dorothy Kindle did when she was Coney's age.
  • The time travel storyline of PvP includes a presumed ancestor of Max Powers who looks and behaves just like him. Modern technology was invisible to medieval Max just as Skull was (until recently) invisible to modern Max.
  • In The Dreamer, 21st—century Bea and 18th—century Bea look exactly the same.
  • Lampshaded in Questionable Content with Marten's dad, who strongly resembles him except for the hair, though that's in part due to Generic Cuteness. Upon meeting Mr. Reed, Dora exclaims "You're going to be so hot when you go gray!"
  • The protagonist of Quentyn Quinn, Space Ranger is a distant descendant of the hero of Tales of the Questor and looks almost the same (even has the same white forelock). Though he does seem a little older and more experienced.
  • In Erstwhile, the princess is the image of her dead mother. This is Not A Good Thing.
  • Homestuck: Averted. All of the characters involved in an SBURB session have a parent or ancestor who resembles them, and troll culture (due to Bizarre Alien Reproduction making tracing lineage impossible) even has characters latch on to historical figures who share the most physical features, calling those "ancestors", but it's rare for them to be identical. Quite a feat, considering the limited art style.
    • Interestingly, the one person who does subscribe to this trope is Dad: he looks like a less hairy version of his grandfather by adoption, Colonel Sassacre.
  • In Endstone, Jon comments on how uncanny it is, the way his daughter resembles his mother.
  • In the sprite comic 194X, Kalinka and Ran strongly resemble their WWII-era ancestors. It's hard to decide whether the fact that Ran is a robot makes this better or worse.
  • In El Goonish Shive, we are told Nanase is the spitting image of her Aunt Noriko (who has not yet been properly seen).
  • In The Wretched Ones, the trope spans 3 generations as John, his father David, and their ancestor Nicholas all look strikingly similar (at least, David in his youth). This goes for Charlie and his father as well.
  • Ozy and Millie: Most of Ozy's adoptive ancestors that Llewellyn tells stories about appear highly similar to Llewellyn. Possibly justified in that Llewellyn may or may not be making them up.
  • In Gourmet Hound, Chef Palmier briefly mistakes Lucy for her grandmother Lynn.

    Web Original 
  • Subverted in Le Visiteur du Futur: Raph tries to prevent the ancestor of the Visitor from meeting the mother of his future child. After revealing that he is the Visitor posing as his ancestor, he tells Raph: "You thought my ancestor had the same face as me? That's completely dumb."
  • Due to a narrow selection of male partners, the mother of Dee from Tales of MU is the spitting image of her great-great-grandmother, the family's current matriarch. Not one to waste an opportunity, the matriarch uses her descendant as assassin bait.
  • In Deadly Space Action!, Gregarion the Sea Barbarian is either an identical ancestor or an Identical Stranger to Lemarion the Space Barbarian.

    Western Animation 
  • In the Kim Possible episode "Rewriting History," practically every main character on the show had a counterpart one hundred years ago with not only a similar appearance, but a similar name. According to Word of God, the episode was not a dream. Additionally, after they come out of the dream (and regardless of its actual status) Kim and Ron are confronted by a statue of someone who looks exactly like Ron from Ancient Rome and learns of his ancient nemesis and mysterious female ally who bears an uncanny resemblance to Dr. Drakken and Kim.
  • There was an arc in the old Inspector Gadget cartoon. Dr. Claw decides to get rid of Gadget by eliminating his ancestors via Time Travel. This goes for several episodes, including prehistoric times, Ancient Rome, and 19th Century Britain. In each, there is an almost-identical variant of Gadget, niece Penny, and their dog, Brain. The prehistoric version of Gadget even has a few Bamboo Technology gadgets!
  • An episode of Jackie Chan Adventures features a journal, written by Jackie's ancestor, which involved identical western ancestors of all the main characters. However, it was established that this was being visualized by Jade, and she was deliberately ignoring how the journal described the character she'd picked as her own counterpart as an adult. On the other hand, the cover of the book clearly showed the "Hong Kong Kid" was identical to Jackie.
  • In The Simpsons Abe Simpson looks exactly like his son, but older and wrinkled. In flashback episodes, Abe and Homer look exactly alike. Marge and her mother also bear a strong resemblance.
    • The episode "The Color Yellow" has a weird variation on this — at first, the episode leads you to believe that the characters Hiram, Mabel, and Eliza Simpson (who look exactly like Homer, Marge, and Lisa, and who must be Homer's ancestors since their name is Simpson) are the identical ancestors of the present-day Simpsons. It turns out, though, that Mabel divorced Hiram and married escaped slave Virgil (who took Mabel's last name), which means that Homer and the kids have an ancestor who's identical to Marge. On the other hand, the trope is played straight with their son Abraham, who looks exactly like a slightly darker-complexioned Bart.
    • One episode showed that Grandpa served alongside identical ancestors of Barney Gumble, Principal Skinner, and Chief Wiggum. And three other guys. It's also implied their CO was one for Ned Flanders.
  • The Loud House: It is revealed that while Lincoln strongly resembles his grandfather, his sister Lucy looks identical to their great grandmother Harriet.
  • Averted in Megas XLR. In the episode "Terminate Her," the bad guys go after the ancestor of Kiva, who traveled back about a thousand years to our time. The two women both have red hair, but that's about their only similarity—they don't look particularly similar, they act differently, they have different skin tones, and they even have different voice actresses.
  • Two SWAT Kats episodes feature Queen Callista, Callie Briggs' lookalike medieval ancestor.
  • Danny Phantom: Jack Fenton and his ancestor John Fenton Nightingale.
  • Played straight in Goldie Gold and Action Jack episode, "Race Against Time", with Goldie Gold and her great-grandmother, Carlotta Gold. She even have gadgets that ride that reminds Travis of Goldie's 1980s vehicles.
  • This was used way back in the old Archie cartoons, which routinely showed the "ancestors" of the Archie gang in historical time periods for educational purposes.
  • Inverted in Time Warp Trio where the three boys of the original trio meet three girls from the 22nd century who are their own great-granddaughters. Each girl has the same hair and skin color as her ancestor, and the boy with glasses has a great-granddaughter with glasses, but not only are these descendants of the opposite gender, each has a personality that is the opposite of her ancestors'.
  • A Looney Tunes shortnote  had an odd example; a scene from a Sylvester & Sylvester Jr. cartoon is shown, but we're told this is Sylvester as a kitten with his father.
  • In Loonatics Unleashed, all the future descendants of the Looney Tunes resemble their ancestors to some degree.
  • In an episode of The Fairly OddParents!, 19th-century Dimmsdale is shown, with the ancestors of their inhabitants all looking like their descendants. The ancestor of Timmy Turner even has Cosmo and Wanda as his fairy godparents (given that they are immortal).
    • It's implied in another episode, which takes place during the 16th century in the town that old be Dimmsdale. One of the inhabitants is a man named Alden Bitterroot, that looks exactly like Timmy's fairy-obsessed teacher, Denzel Crocker, implying that he is an ancestor of him. Alden has even the shares the personality, mannerisms, and obsession with the supernatural of Crocker, but instead of fairies, he is obsessed with witches.
    • An odd instance of this appears in the Breakin' Da Rules! PC game. One level has Timmy time-travel to the 1970s 1950s and have to avoid the younger-aged version of Vicky and Tootie's affectionate mother, Nicky. In-game dialogue from Timmy suggests that Nicky is supposed to resemble Tootie (which she, sure enough, does when she appears on the show)… but the graphics depict her as looking like De-aged Vicky from the "Switch Glitch" episode.
    • There's "Which Witch is Witch," which shows Crocker's ancestor. There's also "Channel Chasers," which shows Tommy Turner who looks like his father with black hair (cluing the audience to believe Trixie or Tootie is his mother). And a recent episode "Timmy Turnip" has Timmy Turner's grandfather who looks like an older version of him, but with bigger, lighter blue eyes.
    • Jorgen's grandmom Nana Boom Boom looks and sounds very much like him.
  • In an episode of The Powerpuff Girls, Professor Utonium's 19th-century ancestor is shown, looking just like his descendant. He creates his own version of the Powerpuff Girls using steampunk technology.
  • In a possible future of Ben 10, Ben's son looks just like a darker skinned present-day Ben (possibly implying a relationship with Kai). Kevin's son looks like a non-mutated version of present-day Kevin.
  • Occurs in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) with the second Turtle Titan and his grandfather, the Silver Sentry. Curiously enough, the characters started out with different voice actors—Silver Sentry was voiced by Terrence Archie, while Marc Diraison (Berserk's Guts) voiced Turtle Titan—until the seventh season, when Diraison took over the Silver Sentry role.
  • In The Jetsons Meet the Flintstones, Judy broods over losing her Stone Age boyfriend Iggy, moping, "A boy that fabulous comes along just once in a million years!" Cue the entrance of Iggy's Space Age descendant, who is a perfect replica of Judy's long-ago crush.
  • Used repeatedly in Family Guy episodes referencing Peter's ancestors, usually named Real Famous Person's Name Griffin, all of whom look and sound exactly like Peter.
    • Subverted in one notable exception where Peter discovers that one of his ancestors is actually black, though still looks and sound otherwise identical.
      • In this flashback, Nate Griffin's (white) wife looks identical to Lois, even though Lois is actually descended from her sister.
    • In a later episode it is revealed that Peter's biological father is actually a man named Mickey McFinnigan, who looks very similar to Peter. This also means that the identical-looking Griffin ancestors were not actually related to him at all.
      • At least not officially, there's nothing preventing one of them from stopping by Ireland…
    • In yet another episode, it is revealed that Peter's ancestor was British and fled England to settle in the New World and eventually founded Quahog. It seems that Peter's contradictory ancestors are just another way to mess with the viewer's mind.
      • He's not his ancestor, but a past life.
  • In King of the Hill, Hank looks identical to his mother while Peggy looked almost exactly like her mother—before the retcon, that is. Bobby looks somewhat similar to his grandfather Cotton, except short and chubby, although it is unknown where he got his blonde hair from; all of his relatives were shown to have brown hair in their youth.
    • In a flashback in the Halloween episode, young Hank looked just like Bobby.
    • There's also Jun-ichiro, Hank's Japanese half-brother, who looks exactly like Hank with a different haircut, despite having a different mother.
    • A couple of flashback episodes showed that Dale, Bill, and Boomhauer all resembled their dad as well. The case with Dale's father was eventually retconned, and later episodes gave him a radically different appearance and voice actor.
  • The Venture Bros. has Jonas Venture Jr., who inherited his father's handsome rugged looks and intellect despite living inside his fraternal twin brother's torso as an absorbed fetus for over 40 years (which resulted in his undeveloped body). In contrast to Thaddeus, who is the antithesis of their father.
  • Phineas and Ferb has their entire cast get into the act in "The Monster of Phineas-n-Ferbenstein".
    • Instead of having Candace trying to tell her mother what her brothers are up to, we've got Constance threatening to tell a mob the Phineas and Ferb analogues made a monster. Like Linda Flynn, the mob doesn't believe her until they see Candace having got turned into a monster.
    • Only confirmed ancestor was Ferb's look-alike. And this is probably just a kid's visualization of Grandpa's story, not really a flashback (Phineas and Candace disputing about proper picture style)
    • In the episode "Phineas and Ferb's Quantum Boogaloo", Candance (20 years older) has a daughter almost identical to her. And Candace herself grew up to be much like her mom.
      • Sort of averted with her other kids—despite her future family clearly mirroring her current one (complaining older daughter, two serene younger sons), neither looks like their avuncular counterparts. On the other hand, Xavier's blond hair does bring to mind who his father might be…
  • Subverted in Justice League: Vandal Savage reappears in a later episode and attempts to use the excuse that when the League traveled back in time to WWII and went up against him, they were really fighting his evil grandfather and that he is actually "Vandal Savage the Third". He was lying, because he's actually an immortal.
    • Although actual examples of this trope happen quite often in the DCAU:
      • Kevin Conroy, who voices Batman/Bruce Wayne, also voices his father, Thomas Wayne, in most of his appearances (though in two cases Richard Moll played Thomas). Thomas looks quite a bit like Bruce, but with a mustache.
      • Even more interestingly, his mother, Martha Wayne, is voiced by Adrienne Barbeau, who voices Catwoman, considered by many to be The Dark Knight's true love. Out of context, this almost inserts an Oedipus Complex into the mix.
    • Christopher McDonald, who voiced Jor-El, would also later voice the far older Superman in his appearance on Batman Beyond.
  • One episode of Arthur had D.W. curious of her grandmother Thora's antique doll prompting a story on how she got it. In the flashback, Thora a spitting image of D.W. right down to the voice. Thora's three brothers also resemble Arthur to an extent.
    • Binkey's great grandfather looked exactly like him as a child.
  • On Garfield and Friends, Some episodes are set in the past and usually feature cats that look and sound like Garfield with different coloring. It's implied they are his ancestors. In one episode Garfield flashes back to when his great uncle Buchanan was sent into space and he looks and sounds exactly like Garfield. Another episode features Jon's Italian ancestor, Tony Arbuckli.
  • An old episode of Scooby-Doo once had Shaggy and Scooby exploring an old mansion belonging to Shaggy's family. In a hallway containing numerous family portraits, Shaggy mentions that all of the members in his family have the same nose shape (so he could say "noses run in the family"), but the actual pictures show that every member of the Rogers family looks exactly the same as Shaggy. Even the women.
  • In the X-Men episode "Descent", the Victorian physician Dr. James Xavier looks like Professor X with a fringe of hair and (in 1888) a mustache.
  • Hurricanes: Stavros Garkos IV, who sent a robot 100 years back in time to change the results of a bet where Stavros Garkos lost everything other than his soccer team, looks like Stavros Garkos. The whole plot was All Just a Dream and there's no evidence that Stavros Garkos IV will even exist.
  • The Legend of Korra:
    • General Iroh is not only voiced by the same actor who played his grandfather Zuko in the beloved original series, but he is named after his great-great-uncle. Appearance-wise, he's much like an adult Zuko.
    • Katara is now well into old age and looks quite a lot like her own grandmother did.
    • Jinora, Aang's granddaughter, looks quite a lot like her grandfather did when he was young. The difference isn't as obvious due to Jinora being a girl with a full head of hair, but it's still there. It becomes extremely obvious at the end of season 3, as she shaves her head and receives the airbending master's tattoos. She looks nearly identical to Aang in the ending shot.
  • In Surprise Party from Holly Hobbie and Friends, Holly Hobbie is said to be the spitting image of her grandmother, the original Holly Hobbie.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • In Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic and Robotnik's ancestors look and act very similar to their modern day counterparts.
    • In Sonic Underground, the hedgehogs find the tomb of an Ancient Egyptian ancestor of theirs who looks (and acts) just like Sonic.
  • Mario and Luigi's 13th-century ancestors look similar to their modern counterparts, except they wear… 16th-century armor?
  • In the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "Time Out For Vengeance!", all of Batman's spiritual ancestors and descendants (who may also be biologically related, but nothing's said either way) look and sound very similar to the series' main Batman.
    • Black Canary is shown to be exactly identical to her mother, the original Black Canary, with the only distinction being her mother wore a mask, where Dinah doesn't.
  • In Metalocalypse, Murderface is literally identical to his grandmother, Stella, but with different hair color and facial hair.
  • Littlest Pet Shop (2012) has Henrietta Twombly, the great-great-grandmother of Mrs. Twombly, who happened to have seven pets who looked like the day camp regulars; and the Biskit Brothers, ancestors of the Biskit Twins. There was also a sheriff who looked like Blythe.
  • Kion from The Lion Guard is only a cub but seems to be this. He resembles his father strongly but resembles his grandfather, Mufasa, even more. He has a similar fur tone, the same stocky build, and the beginnings of a red mane like Mufasa's.
  • The Wacky Adventures Of Ronald Mc Donald has this happen in the fifth video "Have Time, Will Travel". When Ronald and friends go to prehistoric times, they encounter caveman versions of themselves. Later, when the gang goes to the Wild West, Hamburglar is mistaken by an angry mob for his great-great-grandfather Henry H. Burglar II, who looks just like Hamburglar, but with a mustache.
  • Pirates Passage features James Hawkins in the 1717 prologue and his descendant Jim in the main story in 1952.
  • The Smurfs: Notice that Gargamel's mother looks exactly like him. Also, in season 9 with the Smurfs traveling in time, they find several identical ancestors of both Gargamel and Azrael in Egypt, Rome, and Scotland, among others.
  • Rupert made use of this trope twice.
    • "Rupert's Roman Adventure" had Rupert Bear and Bill Badger go back in time to when Nutwood was a village called Nutwoodium and was being visited by Julius Caesar. While there, they encounter identical ancestors of the Professor, Dr. Chimp, Podgy Pig, and Ottoline Otter.
    • "Rupert and Queen Bess" had Rupert and Ottoline go back to the time of William Shakespeare. People bearing at least some resemblance to Podgy Pig, Algy Pug, and Bill Badger who are most likely their ancestors from that time can be seen.
  • In an episode of Detentionaire, while reading Finnwich's Mannifestum, Jenny finds an image of a boy who looks similar to Lee, but with a different hairstyle. He turns out to be Lee's relative (either grandfather or great-grandfather) and a founder of MWF, who defected after learning of their benefactor's true motivations.
  • In The Incredible Hulk (1982), the villain of the episode "When Monsters Meet" was a descendant of Quasimodo who, like his ancestor, was a misshapen hunchback.
  • All SpongeBob SquarePants episodes that have shown prehistoric ancestors of SpongeBob, Squidward and Patrick have depicted them as being practically identical to the modern day versions but with loincloths, unibrows and sharp teeth. Oddly, Mr. Krabs' distant ancestors were far smaller than their modern equivalents.
    • The episode "The Great Patty Caper" ends with the reveal that it was a story told by an old SpongeBob to his grandson, who looks exactly like him but with a bolo tie and a red baseball cap.
  • The Captain Planet and the Planeteers episode "Future Shock" had Zarm recruit three Eco-Villains from the distant future to try and ensure that their future happens by having them go back in time and kill a girl before she could grow up to encourage others to be more eco-friendly. The villains were descended from and bore a strong resemblance to Dr. Blight, Looten Plunder, and Verminous Skumm. To even the odds, Gaia later recruits a future team of Planeteers from an alternate timeline, with the bearers of fire, wind, and heart resembling Wheeler, Linka, and Ma-Ti and the bearers of earth and water resembling gender-flipped versions of Kwame and Gi. Humorously, Wheeler asks Linka if their resemblance to the future bearers of fire and wind are a sign that they'll be together, but Linka denies this.
  • Sheep in the Big City:
    • In the episode "Baa-ck in Time", General Specific and Private Public travel through time, at one point coming across a Conquistador ancestor of General Specific who's almost identical to him.
    • The episode "Baah-dern Times" has the cast becoming sick and the narrator deciding to keep the audience entertained with a silent film starring the grandfathers of Sheep and General Specific, who each bears a considerable resemblance to his respective grandson.
  • In the Dr. Zitbag's Transylvania Pet Shop episode "Medieval Dread", Dr. Zitbag is brought from the present day to medieval times by Moron the Magician so he can fight a dragon. While there, Zitbag encounters medieval ancestors of himself, Horrifido, Officer Deadbeat, the Exorsisters, Professor Sherman Vermin, and Fingers Malone.
  • Avenger Penguins:
    • "The Wild Wild Wild West" shows that the villains Caractacus P. Doom, Harry Slime, and the Stink Brothers all had identical ancestors in the Wild West.
    • "The 23rd Century" revolves around identical descendants of the Avenger Penguins, Doom, and Slime.
    • The episode "High Doom" has the Doc from Saskatoon tell the Avenger Penguins about the adventures of their Wild West ancestors, who look exactly like the Avenger Penguins. The Wild West ancestors of Doom, Slime, and the Stink Brothers also appear.
  • Courage the Cowardly Dog: Eustace and his father look the same, except Eustace's father had a beard.

    Real Life 
  • A 20-year-old woman named Maggie Patterson noticed an old picture of her Grandmother on her wedding day at age 20. She noticed how much they looked a like so she took a picture using the same facial expression and combined the two creating a mirror image
  • Jessica Alba posted an old picture of her grandmother that uncannily looks like her.
  • Orville Redenbacher started appearing in commercials with his real identical grandson shortly before his death. Now his grandson has his role.
  • Nick Tweed-Simmons looks a lot like his father Gene Simmons did at his age. Likewise his sister Sophie is a spitting image of their mother Shannon Tweed.
  • Musician Hank Williams III is said to have an amazing resemblance to his grandfather, the legendary Hank Williams. Minnie Pearl, an old friend of Hank Williams, remarked upon first meeting his grandson, "Lord, honey, you're a ghost."
  • New Orleans Voodoo Queen Marie Laveau had a daughter named Marie Laveau who was also a New Orleans Voodoo Queen who reportedly looked quite like her mother. Needless to say historical accounts and legends surrounding the two women often get mixed up.
  • Dirk Blocker also looked almost exactly like his father, Dan.
  • Alan Hale Sr. and Jr. looked a lot alike.
  • See if you can find an old picture of Cal Ripken, Senior. The resemblance is almost eerie.
  • Due to the tradition of always marrying their sisters, the Egyptian Pharaohs reportedly all looked almost identical. At least until those nasty recessive genes started making their heads look like American footballs.
  • Speaking of American Football, compare Archie Manning in his playing days to the two of his sons that play the sport professionally.
  • In one documentary of Joni Mitchell, clips from interviews with her starting decades ago are mixed in with the images, and it's very clear how her voice changed from when she was young to the modern day. Then, at the end, Mitchell meets back up with her genetic daughter she had put up for adoption—and her daughter's voice sounds just like hers from when she was young. (They do look different, though.)
  • Dark complexion aside, Barack Obama's basically the spitting image of his maternal grandfather.
  • Dhani Harrison looks exactly like his father, George Harrison, when he was younger.
    • In fact, all The Beatles' children look very much like their fathers.
      • In Julian Lennon's case, he even sounds like his father when singing.
      • Except Zak Starkey, who seems to take more after his mother.
    • Three of the Beatles (John, Paul and George) themselves resembled each of their fathers. It's unknown if Ringo did because no picture of his father is available to the public.
    • Giles Martin also bears an uncanny resemblance to his father, Beatles producer Sir George Martin.
  • There's the adage, "If you want to know what a woman will look like in a few decades, meet her mother." Generally, it's pretty accurate.
  • The British Royal Family may in fact be made of this trope. Behold! While that picture of Edward I being compared to Prince William is clearly an 18th—or 19th-century rendition (he lived in the 13th century), many of the other, more recent ancestral pictures on the page play it straight.
  • Compare Martin Sheen in Apocalypse Now with his son Charlie Sheen in Platoon. Or his other son, Emilio Estevez, in recent years.
    • A commercial for Visa Check Card uses this trope directly.
    Clerk: (Looking at Charlie's ID) This doesn't look like you.
    Martin: It did when I came in here…
  • Kirk Douglas and Michael Douglas.
  • George Clooney looks an awful lot like his father, Nick Clooney, did in his youth, see here and here
  • Jerry and Brian Lawler
  • Aside from a lack of poodle-perm, Jeff Buckley was almost the spitting image of his dad, Tim.
  • Harrison Ford's son Ben resembles him so much they used him to fill in for his father for a few new shots in the Final Cut version of Blade Runner.
  • Angelina Jolie bears a strong resemblance to her mother, actress Marcheline Bertrand.
  • After over 3 centuries, Japanese figure skater Oda Nobunari retains a strong physical resemblance to his famous ancestor Oda Nobunaga. Though the resemblances sorta stop there…
  • Here's Ingrid Bergman and her daughter Isabella Rossellini. Except for the eye color, she's almost a carbon copy of her mom.
  • The descendants of J.M. James believe their ancestor was actually outlaw Jesse James, whom they claim faked his own death to avoid arrest. While their claim is considered highly dubious by historians, family member Jeremiah James bears a remarkable resemblance to photographs of Jesse James as a young man: so much so that, if the blood connection were true, he would qualify as an identical great-great-grandson.
  • Actress/musician Schuyler Fisk looks almost exactly like her mother Sissy Spacek.
  • Aside from being blonde, Brian Henson is a near-perfect replication of his father, Jim.
  • Late John Ritter and his son Jason.
  • Mark Hamill and his son Nathan
  • Bette Midler and her twenty-something daughter Sophie von Haselberg.
  • Colin Hanks is a lanky version of his father with a different haircut.
  • French king Louis Philippe I to Louis XIV. Not exactly a great-grandson but a great-nephew, Louis Philippe is a descendant of Louis XIV's brother, though he was also a descendant of Louis XIV himself through an illegitimate child.
    • Actually, he was descended four times from Louis XIV (through three different illegitimate children), as well as twice from Louis XIV's brother. More of his ancestors were from the Bourbon family than not, really.
  • Liza Minnelli looks and sounds very similar to mother Judy Garland.
  • Dutch football expert Your Mulder looks like a blonder version of his father, Dutch football expert Jan Mulder.
  • Self-proclaimed Great Beast, ritual magician and mountebank Aleistar Crowley claimed to be the reincarnation of Pope Alexander VI (Rodrigo Borgia) and of a previous French ritual magician, Eliphaz Levi. If you compare photos of Crowley to paintings of Borgia, there is an eerie likeness. although Crowley might have noticed the coincidence first, and played on it as bluff and boffo.
  • Thomas Jefferson Randolph looks quite like his more famous Grandfather. Not that this pleased him much.
  • As she's grown into old age Queen Elizabeth II began to resemble her grandmother Queen Mary of Teck.
  • Compare Walt Disney to his nephew Roy E. Disney.
  • Arnold Schwarzenegger's son Patrick looks exactly like him.
    • Even more so for Joseph, his son out of wedlock. Supposedly, while the mother told neither Arnold or his wife that he was the father, they both independently realised it, when the child grew to be the spitting image of Arnold.
  • Reese Witherspoon and her daughter Ava Phillipe.
  • Cindy Crawford and her daughter Kaia.
  • While it's difficult to find photographs of them at the same age, frequent Ed Wood collaborator John "Bunny" Breckinridge bore a strong resemblance to his great-grandfather, former U.S. Vice-President John C. Breckinridge.
  • Frances Bean Cobain has declared that former Nirvana members are often unsettled by how much she looks like her late father Kurt. The Courtney Love heritage is pretty clear too, but the Kurt similarity is more pronounced.
  • Sean Pertwee, the son of the late Doctor Who actor Jon Pertwee heavily resembles his father — an altered picture combining his face with his father's hair and costume shows just how close the resemblance is leading to fans suggesting he could possibly reprise his father's role as the Third Doctor in the revived series.
  • Priscilla Presley, daughter Lisa Marie Presley, and granddaughter Riley Keough. And it's clear Elvis Presley's genes are there.
  • In his youth, Charles-Louis Cadet de Gassicourt, Napoleon's pharmacist, looked nearly identical to his father… his biological father, that is. Given that the father in question was King Louis XV, people could not help but comment on this.
  • Chelsea Clinton bears an almost terrifying resemblance to her mother Hillary.
  • Jazmin Grace Grimaldi is one of two Royal Bastards of Albert II, Prince of Monaco. She has a strong resemblance to her paternal grandmother Grace Kelly.
  • Current King Felipe VI of Spain, once he started growing up a beard, began to greatly resemble the first King of Spain (and his ancestor) Charles I of Spain (or Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, if you're living outside of the Hispanophone world).
  • North Korean propaganda very much likes to highlight the resemblance between the current leader, Kim Jong-Un, and his grandfather who founded the country, Kim Il-Sung.
  • Aside from hair length and colour, guitarist Zach Irons looks a lot like his dad, former Red Hot Chili Peppers and Pearl Jam drummer Jack Irons (on the far right), did in his youth.
  • Maya Hawke can serve as this for both Uma Thurman and Ethan Hawke.

Alternative Title(s): Identical Grandfather, Identical Grandchild, Identical Grandparent, Identical Granddaughter, Identical Ancestor, Identical Son


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: