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Identical Stranger

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Bart Simpson (left) meet Simon Woosterfield (right)

Piper: look just like—!
Princess Peregrine: I know... this is seriously freaking me out. You don't think that we're—
Piper: Nah, I'd think I'd know if I had a twin sister. They say everyone has a double somewhere. I guess it's true!
Storm Hawks, "Royal Twist"

They say that everybody has got a double somewhere. After all, the Earth has a human population that is more than a immense amount of people; it would actually be stranger if no two people were at least vaguely similar in their appearance. On the other hand, it's not as common in Real Life as it seems to be in media... or, at the very least, not as common for such individuals to actually meet.

On television this is often utilized for comedy, by making them very different people personality-wise.

As far as tropes go, this is one of the more ludicrously implausible ones. Take the probability of an Identical Grandson, ramp it up, and we're sort of in the right ballpark. This trope has stuck around mainly because it's a fun Plot Device. Meeting your own grandfather requires you to be in a Time Travel scenario, whereas a stranger can be, well, anyone more or less. Still, expect groans from the audience if this trope forces both identical strangers onto the screen at the same time a little too often. It gets past our Willing Suspension of Disbelief largely because it seems less improbable in the abstract than when we're directly confronted with it.

In works with Only Six Faces, Identical Strangers often turn up as well (occasionally to lampshade the Only Six Faces trope, but frequently just as a byproduct of it.)

When combined with Swapped Roles it results in Emergency Impersonation. Add both Swapped Roles and Fish out of Water and you have Prince and Pauper. If one gets put out of action, the other might be called upon to pull an El Cid Ploy.

If this happens in a Live Action scenario, the doppelganger is almost always played by the same actor or actress in an alternate role. (And oftentimes, in an animated scenario, by the same VA.)

Compare: Criminal Doppelgänger (when an Identical Stranger is also an evil duplicate of a character), Significant Double Casting, Similar Squad, Twin Switch (regular series with identical twins), Celebrity Resemblance, and Inexplicably Identical Individuals.


In-Universe Examples Only.

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  • Discover Card has a series of commercials utilizing this trope to show that the company's representatives treat the customers the way they'd want to be treated themselves. The commercials have a customer call the company and talk to a representative played by the same actor.
    • One commercial subverts this. The representative realizes that the caller is her twin sister when she says something she always says.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Hotaru, the narrator of Assassination Classroom Chapter 180.1 and daughter of the owner of a diner Koro-sensei frequents, looks like Nagisa if he had longer hair and was actually a girl.
  • The plot of the one-volume manga Arisa2: a high school boy encounters who he believes is his long-lost childhood friend with whom he made a Childhood Marriage Promise, due to the girl having the same meek and quiet personality, only to meet an identical woman with the same exact name who is a total Genki Girl later that day. Naturally, it's the latter who turns out to be the best friend. Except not really. It turns out the introverted Arisa really is the childhood friend, just with amnesia, while the outgoing one is a clone who was created in case the "real" one never recovered.
  • Attack on Titan:
    • Side character Ilse of the Survey Corps is noted by an Aberrant Titan to resemble Ymir which confuses the latter greatly.
    • The Beast Titan's human from bears a resemblance to Grisha Yeager. This is not a coincidence.
  • Baccano!'s Huey Laforet not only has identical kids and grandchildren, but also an Identical Stranger by way of Kasuka Heiwajima, who is noted to look quite like his identical great-great-grandson Charon Walken in the eighth volume of Durarara!! How a Japanese model and actor ends up with such an uncanny resemblance to an immortal French terrorist and his offspring is anyone's guess, but fans have theories.
  • In Battle Girls: Time Paradox, ordinary school girl Yoshino "Hideyoshi" Hide finds herself in an alternate world that resembles Feudal Japan, except everybody is female. Akechi Mitsuhide and Tokugawa Ieyasu look and sound exactly like Hideyoshi's classmates Akerin and Tokunyan. Although they are clearly not the same people, Hideyoshi continues to address them by the names of her classmates, and tries to treat them as her old friends. Subverted with Date Masamune. Hideyoshi notes that she looks and sounds like her teacher... then she turns out to actually be her teacher, who traveled to this world as well.
  • Black God features this as a major plot point (also based on the traditional belief that seeing your doppleganger is a bad omen.) Everyone on Earth has two dopplegangers (called 'doppeliners'), and if two of them ever meet, they both die, giving the surviving third extraordinary luck.
  • Bleach:
    • Ichigo Kurosaki and Kaien Shiba never met but they have identical personalities and appearances, with the exception of hair colour (orange and black). Several characters speculate on the similarities between them. They're cousins. Ichigo's father is Kaien's uncle.
    • Ichigo's zanpakuto, Zangetsu, looks identical to Yhwach, the Big Bad of the final arc. That's because "Zangetsu" is actually the physical manifestation of Ichigo's Quincy powers, which were given to him by Yhwach. On a related one, Tensa Zangetsu, Ichigo's "bankai", takes the form of Yhwach as a young man.
  • In Bloom Into You, Haru Edamoto, who eventually gets into a relationship with Sayaka, looks very similar to series protagonist Yuu Koito, although it isn't commented on in story. Amusingly enough, Sayaka initially didn't get along with Yuu due to jealousy of her closeness with Touko (although they do eventually become friends), but ends up with a girl who looks like her.
  • Case Closed has several:
    • Shinichi Kudou and Kaitou Kid. Originally this was just because Kaitou was created first and Shinichi reused his appearance, but after they were established as having a Shared Universe, the resemblance became explicit in-series. In some of the Non Serial Movies, Kaitou impersonates Shinichi without his usual disguises and one OVA has Kaitou lose a part of his Kid uniform after parachuting into some trees, then find the Detective Boys and pretend that he's Shinichi so they won't find out.
    • In Lupin III vs. Detective Conan, Ran Mouri and Crown Princess Mira of Vespania look enough alike that Mira makes Ran her unwilling royal double for a while. And then poor Ran is drugged and taken back to Vespania to continue the role.
    • The Detective Boys' schoolteacher Sumiko Kobayashi has an uncanny resemblance to police detective Miwako Satou plus glasses. In later issues, Shiratori realizes that his affection for Satou was misplaced because he had met a police-obsessed and glasses-less Kobayashi at a bookstore when they were both children, and had subsequently mistaken the adult Satou for her. Kobayashi herself resents this when she finds out, mistakenly thinking that he's using her to forget Satou, though by that point Shiratori had properly realised who the girl he loved actually was.
    • The three Osaka kids that Conan meets in the OVA, "Conan and Heiji and the Vanished Boy" strongly resemble the Detective Boys. Even their names sound very alike: Mayumi, Mikihiko, and Kenta.
    • In movie 9 Akiyoshi Minako strongly resembles Ran's mother Eri, so much that Kogoro attempts to prove her innocence... and then he finds out that she is the true murderer.
    • In one of the OAVs, it turns out Ai is a dead-ringer for child actress Grace Aihara.
    • Ran is said to look a lot like a younger version of Ai's dead older sister Akemi , to the point that Ai was reluctant to get close to Ran because she was still reeling from her terrible loss... but once Ran saved Ai's life, she became almost desperately protective of Ran as a result. It even gets lampshaded when Ai once stares at Ran and pretty much sees her as Akemi.
  • City Hunter: Inspector Hirotaka Kitao looks almost exactly like Hideyuki, to the point that Kaori herself mistook him for his ghost. Interestingly, Ryo states that they look completely different, implying that either there is some physical difference Kaori and Saeko can't see or he could notice the difference in their character with a single look (or he actually forgot Hideyuki's face as he claimed).
  • Nunnally Lamperouge and Rolo Haliburton from Code Geass look pretty much the same except for their sex, despite being unrelated. They have the same features, pale skin, light brown hair, and purple eyes (though Nunners' are perpetually closed until the Grand Finale. This allows Rolo to easily replace Nunnally in her brother Lelouch's Fake Memories.
  • In Cowboy Bebop, Faye Valentine first met Spike Spiegel when she mistook him for a similar-looking but identically dressed contact.
  • Cromartie High School: Hokuto's Butler looks like he could be the grandfather of Kamiyama. When they meet for the first time, there is a moment of stunned silence until they declare they don't know each other at all. Then again, Kamiyama wears a wig, while the butler's hair is all natural.
  • Cross Game ups the drama stakes by introducing Akane, a girl who looks identical to Kou's love interest and dead older sister of Aoba, Wakaba Tsukushima.
  • Daily Lives of High School Boys: In High School Boys and the Literary Girl (2), Motoharu wanted to find his sister Mino on the Artificial Riverbank... and mistook a similarly long-haired, Sailor Fuku-wearing girl as her. She's actually the Literature Girl.
  • Daimos: Due to her large eyes and Hime Cut, Sayuri looks near-identical to Princess Erika of the Baam. It's taken to hilarious results when an anti-Baam racist, Sakamori Miwa, confuses her for the Alien Princess and demands her arrest...only to be laughed at by everyone when Kyoshiro points out that she's human.
  • The third episode of Digimon Frontier has the characters encountering and fighting a Wizardmon. In a later episode, the kids meet Seraphimon's aide, Sorcermon, causing them to comment that "he looks just like Wizardmon."
  • Doctor Slump has Nonko and Anko, two girls (from the city) that look like Akane and Arale (Nonko has a different hairstyle while Anko is a brunette). When Anko loses her lens (after being shocked seeing a living poop), she is obliged to put her glasses and is mistaken for Arale by Senbei that takes her to the Norimaki Residence. While searching for her friend, Nonko meets Arale and mistakes her for Anko. Nonko realizes that Arale is not Anko only when in the plane back to their home.
  • Don't Meddle with My Daughter!: Despite the difference in age, Point Blanknote  is a dead ringer for Athena's deceased husband, BM "the Shooter". Her friend Hanna thinks he may be a clone, since her sources say Deepthroat managed to get a sample of BM's DNA sometime prior to his death. Athena refuses to believe it. Ultimately subverted, as it later turns out that Point Blank actually is Athena's husband as he got pulled into the past and takes on the name BM to help the younger version of Athena. After two years, the present-day version of his wife rescues and brings him back to the present, resulting in a happy (albeit somewhat awkward) family reunion with their daughter.
  • Doraemon has several movies where the gang meets identical doppelgangers of themselves.
    • Doraemon: Nobita and the Birth of Japan: The gang meets Kukuru, a child from the Stone Age accidentally displaced into modern-day Japan, who looks almost exactly like Nobita. Gian and Suneo are wondering why Nobita's behaving strangely when a confused Kukuru attacks them, leading to Gian knocking Kukuru unconscious and questioning what's wrong with Nobita... just as the real Nobita steps in from behind.
    • Doraemon: Nobita and the Animal Planet: Set in a World of Funny Animals, the gang puts on Doraemon's Animal Disguise Kit to blend with the locals. Gian gets a gorilla disguise because of his size, and it just so happens there's a gorilla child named Goriro who's an exact doppelganger of Gian. A Running Gag in the anime involves Goriro's strict father trying to spank Gian for slacking off, only to realize he's spanking the wrong kid.
    • Doraemon: Nobita's the Legend of the Sun King: Nobita and Tio, the prince of a Mayan-like kingdom existing in another universe, are practically clones of each other. Prince Tio, naturally curious about the world outside his own, proposes they swap places for a day, leading to a Prince and Pauper-style plot (which works amazingly well - even Nobita's mother couldn't tell Prince Tio is in his place).
    • Doraemon: Nobita's Three Visionary Swordsmen: The whole gang enters Dream Land and gets to transform into their dream counterparts, which are exact clones of their real-world selves. Nobita becomes Nobitania, Shizuka turns into Shizukaria, while Gian and Suneo become Giantosu and Sunemisu.
    • Doraemon: Nobita and the Galaxy Super-express has an example between two unrelated characters. The technician on the Dinosaur Planet looks exactly like Mr.Koike, a minor character from the manga. As the Galaxy Express and her staff come from the distant future 200 years later, the technician could be an Identical Grandson.
    • Doraemon: Nobita and the Green Giant Legend: The Green Planet has a tribe living underneath, and among them is a huge Plant Alien named Moya who looks exactly like Gian, but with green skin. Early on, the gang meets Moya's friend Tama, who mistakes Gian for Moya.
    • Doraemon: Nobita and the Island of Miracles ~Animal Adventure~: Dakke, an amnesiac young boy from the 1980s accidentally dragged into the future, is another dead ringer to Nobita. Though it's justified when Dakke is actually Nobita's own father, Nobisuke, suffering from Easy Amnesia, something Nobita doesn't find out until near the end of the adventure.
    • Doraemon: Nobita's Treasure Island: Flocks' sister, Sarah, turns out to be exactly like Shizuka with blond hair. A band of pirates mistaking Shizuka for Sarah and kidnapping her kickstarts the plot of the film, and Sarah, despite being raised as a pirate, is a Nice Girl like Shizuka, both of them even bonding well with each other.
    • The 2021 remake of Doraemon: Nobita's Little Space War has a Canon Foreigner character, Pappi's elder sister Piina who looks almost exactly like Shizuka, right down to having the same fringes in her hair (despite Piina being an alien). When Pappi meets Shizuka for the first time, he's momentarily stunned thinking he saw his sister who's still in another planet.
  • Dragon Ball Z: The Tree of Might: Turles looks like Goku. He comments that resemblances were common among low class Saiyans.
  • Makoto and Princess Fatora in El-Hazard: The Magnificent World - even better/worse, it's a gender-swapped identical stranger.
  • In the twincest manga Everyday Every Night, protagonist Nohara Minato has no idea he has a twin until one suddenly shows up and starts following him around and professing his love to him all the time. Minato doesn't believe that the stranger is his twin (even though they're identical) until he shows him a cut in the same place that Minato has one. Never mind that twins do not work that way.
  • In Eyeshield 21, during the "Death March" arc Sena accidentally gets roped into a round of NFL tryouts where he meets Jimmy Simard, who looks very much like his teammate Ishimaru back home. The joke is that "Jimmy Simard" sounds like "jimi ishimaru" when said with a Japanese accent. "Jimi Ishimaru" means "plain Ishimaru," one of the running gags of the series. In the anime, on the plane ride that kicked off the America arc the characters mix up Cerberus and an identical looking stuffed animal.
  • Fairy Tail:
    • This trope is played with using Edolas. 'Mystogan' (Edolas) and Jellal (Earthland) is the most Played Straight example, even sharing the same real first name, even though this gets deconstructed as Wendy confuses the two of them in the Oracion Seis arc. And also by the fact that Mystogan has to hide his face at all times when in Earthland, because he's the double of a notorious criminal. Both Lucy Ashley (Edolas) and Erza Knightwalker (Edolas) end up cutting their hair to avoid confusion with their Earthland counterparts; in the latter case, Erza Scarlet had used her similar appearance to impersonate Erza Knightwalker. All of the above is Justified as Edolas is an Alternate Universe that all Earthland inhabitants have a counterpart in Edolas of.
    • Lisanna Strauss and Yukino Agria are noted to greatly resemble each other. The only way to tell them apart is their different hair colors.
  • Fist of the North Star has Yuria and Mamyia. In the manga, they as Kenshiro and Toki note look completely identical to each other (with Kenshiro initially mistaking Mamyia for Yuria), yet they aren’t sisters or related at all. Their resemblance is actually the reason why Ken couldn’t reciprocate Mamyia’s feelings for him, since she painfully reminded him too much of Yuria who was his fiancé. Interestingly Raoh despite being in love with Yuria himself, unlike his brothers doesn’t acknowledge Mamyia’s similarity to Yuria when meeting her. The anime and games to their credit do make Yuria and Mamyia look more distinct, giving Yuria a different hair colour from Mamyia, contrasting to the manga where they’re both dark haired.
  • Used as a plot point in Fullmetal Alchemist (2003) and its sequel film Fullmetal Alchemist: The Conqueror of Shamballa. Everyone has an Identical Stranger on the other side of the Gate, which is "our" world. Some are exactly identical (like Hughes and Edward) down to the name while others (like Alfons, who is Alphonse's counterpart, and Noah, who is Rose's counterpart) are more individual but still parallel their counterparts.
  • Full Metal Panic! has two examples. One is anime-only, and the other is found only in the original novels:In the anime, Kaname gets one in TSR, in the form of a Chinese prostitute who fancied Sousuke (who paid her just to talk because he was having huge psychological problems at the time). In the novels, there's a side story where Sousuke is revealed to be almost identical to a young teen heartthrob idol named Kousuke; when he got getting tired and wanting a vacation, switches places with Sousuke.
  • In Fushigi Yuugi, Nuriko and Lady Houki turn out to be dead-ringers for each other... so much that, after Nuriko's Heroic Sacrifice, Miaka does mistake Houki for a reborn Nuriko when she sees her for the first time. Suzaku hi Den has the two interacting and becoming friends as they arrive to the Royal Harem more or less at the same time, including how the latter tripped on her robes, the first helped her back on her feet... and then they saw each other's faces clearly...
    Nuriko: "Oh, brother! It's like I'm looking in a mirror!. All ya need is a mole under your left eye , and you'll be a perfect copy of me! ... Though you're not anywhere near as good at using makeup as I am."
  • When Conan frees the prisoners at Industria in Future Boy Conan, one of them looks exactly like his recently deceased grandfather. They have an emotional embrace, but Conan realizes they’re not the same person because he has no idea who he is. They depart ways but Conan still calls him “Grandfather” anyway.
  • Izumi Isoyama from Ga-Rei looks almost exactly like the long-dead Big Bad Yomi Isayama. Then it's revealed that since Kagura resurrected Yomi, Yomi and Izumi now share the same body. Their souls have even fused together.
  • After having a discussion about identity, Major Kusanagi from Ghost in the Shell notices a person that look exactly like her.
    • Kusanagi's prosthetic body has a stock appearance - other people can buy one that looks the same (the Major's has a whole heap of high performance, military grade equipment beneath the skin).
  • Goblin Slayer: Priestess and Princess look alike, though Princess has shorter hair and (to Priestess' chagrin) bigger boobs.
  • Gundam:
    • Gundam 00 has a version thanks to Cloning; Flashbacks will occasionally feature people who are the genetic source material for modern clones. Gundam 00 A Wakening Of The Trail Blazer introduced Meena Carmine, whose ancestor's DNA was used to make Nena Trinity, and a flashback shows that Aeolia Schenberg was friends with a man named E.A. Ray, whose DNA would be used to make Ribbons Almark, the TV series' Big Bad as well as the lookalike who menaces Setsuna during the events of the movie.
    • The Gundam Wing sequel novel Frozen Teardrop, which is set 30 years after the show but has extensive flashbacks to the generation before, uses this trope and Identical Grandson extensively. Trowa Barton's successor Trowa Phobos looks exactly like him, while the younger version of Doktor S (creator of Gundam Heavyarms) looks like Trowa with different hair. The biggest stand-out is that both Heero Yuys — the legendary colonial leader and the Gundam Pilot for whom he's named — look identical, despite the fact that the original Heero was shown in at least one episode and looked completely say nothing of the fact that nobody in the anime ever noticed a resemblance between Pilot!Heero and his incredibly famous namesake. Just to make things weirder, Original!Heero was in a Love Triangle with Katrina and Sabrina Peacecraft, the mother and aunt (respectively) of Wing's female lead and Pilot!Heero's own Love Interest Relena... and they happen to be twin sisters as well, meaning that they look exactly like Relena only with slightly different hairstyles.
  • One episode of Harukanaru Toki no Naka de - Hachiyou Shou has the main cast meeting a girl who looks exactly like Akane (minus the hair length) and has the same name. Ironically, when they are trying to help said girl and her boyfriend, and come up with some plan that involves impersonating them, the idea of Akane performing the role of her "twin" gets rejected immediately on the grounds of being too dangerous.
  • In The Heart of Thomas, New Transfer Student Eric looks exactly like Thomas, a student of the school who died just a week prior to his arrival. He is not happy when people comment on that.
  • In Hekikai No Aion, Sheila and Tatsuya's mother, Umi look almost exactly alike. The reasons for this hasn't been explained in however.
  • The real reason Kiraya-sensei of High School Ninja Girl, Otonashi-san doesn't want go out with Kunitachi-sensei is because she looks exactly the same as his older sister. They're personalities are practically identical as well, and they both have a crush on him.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
    • Diamond is Unbreakable: When the unnamed man who saved Josuke appears in the flashback, he looked practically identical to the present day Josuke (having the same hairdo helps), just with some minor wounds and cuts on his face (which Josuke himself also suffers from time to time).
    • JoJolion: Yoshikage Kira looks like an older Josuke. In fact, a DNA test shows that there's a 95.8% chance that Kira and Josuke are the same person, and that's because "Josuke" is the fusion of Yoshikage Kira and Josefumi Kujo.
  • The Kaguya-sama: Love Is War spin-off light novel features a girl who attended Shuchi'in 40 years prior that was the spitting image of Kaguya. While it's possible that the two might be related, she definitely wasn't a direct ancestor given how she committed suicide as a teen.
  • Kyoumen no Silhouette runs off of this trope. In that world, aristrocrats normally have a "shadow", an Identical Stranger to serve them as a Body Double but also as closest friend and support.
  • Legend of the Blue Wolves gives us Jonathan Tyberius and Leonard's dead younger brother. This turns out to be pretty plot-important, as Leonard's attraction to Jonathan starts as a Big Brother Instinct of sorts, which is based on how much Jonathan looks like the brother he couldn't protect.
  • Love Hina:
    • Kaolla's brother happens to look exactly like a tanned, not-clumsy version of Keitaro in the anime. In the manga is only mentioned.
    • The manga and the Spring Special introduced Nyamo, who looked and acted like a darker-skinned (and somewhat more athletic) version of Shinobu (complete with crush of Keitaro). Given that they did not share a language they did not fool anyone, but the effect was still creepy.
  • There's a chapter in one of the later Lupin III series where the guys recruit a mousy, ordinary civilian who happens to bear a strong resemblance to Fujiko Mine. Once she's given a Makeover and a new haircut, she realizes that she looks almost exactly like Fujiko.
  • Lyrical Nanoha:
  • In Magical × Miracle, the plot kicked off because Mel happened to have an identical face to the missing Master Wizard Sylthfern and one of Sylthfern's friends decides she could impersonate Sylthfern to protect the country's peace until they found the real one.
  • Miriam: A lawman uses his uncanny resemblance to wanted killer Silver King (they both have long, blond hair, blue eyes, and a diagonal scar on their face) to infiltrate a criminal organization from the inside.
  • An episode of Miss Machiko feature a woman identical to Machiko. The only difference is that she is red-haired and Machiko is a brunette.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin, an alternate retelling-slash-prequel to Mobile Suit Gundam, introduces a real Char Aznable, who looks exactly like Casval Deikun (the Char fans know and love) except for eye color (Casval has blue, Char has brown). When Casval learns that the Zabis are out to get him, he pulls a rather... cold-blooded Twin Switch, getting poor Char killed and assuming his identity. This actually briefly lead to an Epileptic Tree that Full Frontal from Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn was Real!Char who had somehow survived.
  • In Nagasarete Airantou, protagonist Ikuto just happens to resemble Takatora, Disappeared Dad of Suzu, his best friend on the island. Anyone who had known Takatora has even noted the similarities between the two.
  • Spoofed in a filler episode of Naruto where Ino is asked to be the Body Double of a princess that "looks just like her," which she does... not counting the fact that said princess probably weighs two to three times more than Ino. That was because Princess Fuku used to look a lot (though not exactly) like Ino, but when she was nervous about meeting the guy she was arranged to marry she started eating a lot and got fat, so now she needs Ino to take her place.
  • Nasuverse:
    • In the Fate/Prototype prequel Fragments of Sky Silver, Saber says that Ayaka Sajyou looks exactly like Vivian, the Lady of the Lake.
    • Fate/strange Fake: One of the Masters for the Holy Grail War is Ayaka Sajyou. Several characters assume she is the same Ayaka from Fate/Prototype, until it is revealed that this is just a Muggle who shares Ayaka's name and face (though Prototype Ayaka is a brunette and this Ayaka is a blonde). The other characters find out Prototype's Ayaka is in Romania oblivious to the events of Strange Fake.
    • Fate/Zero: Saber looks exactly like Jeanne d'Arc. Caster, a.k.a. Gilles de Rais/Bluebeard, who was in love with Jeanne, is thoroughly convinced she is an amnesiac Jeanne despite her efforts to explain she is an entirely different person. In his insanity, he starts committing mass murders, believing this will reawaken her memories. Later appearances by Jeanne show they actually don't look that similar, with different builds, hairstyles, eye color, and facial features, but they're both pale blonde-haired youthful women of good who wear armor and use swords, and Gilles is completely insane, so it's a pretty forgivable mistake.
    • By Fate/Grand Order, "Saberfaces" are common enough that it's actually a special quality a Servant can have, like being dragon-blooded or divine. While Jeanne being a Saberface is from Fate/Apocrypha, and it's only to be expected that Saber's sister and clone-daughter (Morgan and Mordred respectively) look a lot like her, it soon starts getting ridiculous. At least Saber, Jeanne, and Nero are European; Okita is Japanese and yet is completely indistinguishable from Saber. Eventually there is a "Saber Wars" event dealing with all the Saberfaces, at least a few of which actually are different copies of the real Saber doing a terrible job of pretending to be someone else.
  • Negima! Magister Negi Magi:
    • Asuna is noted to have a very similar face to Negi's cousin Nekane, causing him to be drawn to her. He's initially shocked because their personalities couldn't be anymore different. It's later revealed that they are related, though only by marriage (Nekane is his paternal cousin and Asuna is a maternal aunt an unspecified number of generations apart).
    • Nodoka's friend Craig is drawn to protect her because she looks exactly like his childhood friend from back home whom he's nursing feelings for.
  • Nobunaga Concerto: Modern day slacker Saburo and Oda Nobunaga, facilitating the Swapped Roles. Real Nobunaga eventually comes back into the plot as Akechi Mitsuhide.
  • One Piece:
    • Kuina, Zoro's childhood friend from flashbacks who died in a home accident, and Tashigi, a young woman in the Marines, both look and act very similar, to the point that Zoro completely freaks out upon meeting Tashigi, with the only obvious difference being that Tashigi wears glasses (and very clearly needs them) while Kuina does not. Given that Word of God has confirmed these two share the same year of birth and the fact that Oda is the undisputed master of Chekhov's Gun, this has led many people to assume they're one and the same, or at least related, but it's been conclusively proven they're not the same person by Word of God and Chapter/Episode 0. They're later revealed by Oda to have different birthdates (via his common practice of accepting fans' suggestions of birthdays that are thematically appropriate), meaning Tashigi is several months older than Kuina, so they're definitely not twins (though secretly being sisters or cousins can't yet be ruled out).
    • In the twist on this trope often found in One Piece, Duval has been given a lot of grief in his life for his resemblance to Sanji—except he doesn't look like the real Sanji, but rather, he looks exactly like the poorly-drawn portrait on the Marines' bounty poster. Plenty of other people have mistaken Duval for his more famous lookalike, and Duval has had to fend off bounty hunters attempting to capture or kill him, causing him to develop a deep grudge.
    • In his cover page story, the minor villain Caribou washes up on an island and is mistaken for a revolutionary commander named Gaburu who coincidentally looks exactly like him (and turns out to be dead). Caribou is initially confused by the situation, but eventually embraces his mistaken identity and, in a rare instance of selflessness, leads his crew to battle against the tyrannical pirates oppressing the island.
    • The CP8 agent Alpha from Bonney's flashback is a dead ringer for CP9 agent Kalifa. But she definitely isn't actually Kalifa under an alias (as might otherwise be a reasonable assumption for a secret agent), because the flashback doesn't take place far enough back to be before Kalifa was promoted to CP9. Kalifa was already undercover in Galley-La at the time. Plus, Alpha seems significantly less competent than Kalifa and lacks Kalifa's quirks.
  • Played with in Phantom Thief Jeanne; multiple characters comment on how similar main character Maron looks to her alter ego Jeanne, even though they look different enough to avert Clark Kenting. As a result, Maron's best friend Miyako easily figures out that Maron and Jeanne are the same person and only pretends to be in the dark so that no one else gets suspicious (her father is the detective assigned to catch Jeanne).
  • Pokémon: The Series:
    • Late in the DPP arc, the group meets Dawn's doppelganger, Princess Salvia. Salvia uses the resemblance to switch places with Dawn, allowing her to get out of her house and participate in a contest, which she and her Togekiss always wanted to do. To help sell the ruse, Salvia competed not in a traditional contest outfit but Dawn's travel wear, lampshading the short skirt beforehand. Salvia became the second person to win on her contest debut, giving the ribbon to her runner-up Jessie (as Dawn already had five; Jessie also got the other ribbon won by a debutant, her partner James disguised as her because she herself was ill).
    • Ash has been confused for someone else a few times, some of whom even have a Pikachu. Then there's Ritchie...
    • James's fiancee Jessiebelle looks exactly the same as Jessie, except with a different hairstyle and earrings. James never noticed.
    • Jessie and James themselves are this to an extent, in part due to the Only Six Faces nature of the art, and it's lampshaded when one impersonates the other. On one notable occasion, Jessie disguised half of herself as James to cover for her partner's absence; it works.
    • In the episode "Crossing Paths", Jessie meets a boy named Austin who looks exactly like a boy she had a crush on years ago named Astin.
    • An episode of Journeys has Chloe meeting a girl named Soleil who not only looks exactly her (the only way to distinguish them is by their hair highlights), but whose Japanese name even sounds phonetically similar to her own Japanese name; Koharu —> Haruhi.
  • Pretty Cure:
  • Queen Millennia: Hajime notes that the Eternal Manager looks exactly like Yayoi, but she's just another member of Queen Millennia's team.
  • Downplayed in Rakuin No Monshou with Orba and Prince Gil. Originally the two were similar in appearance but a close inspection would reveal differences. The trope was enforced when Orba was fitted with a magic mask that molded his face to more closely match Gil's.
  • In Saki, Nodoka's old friend Ako looked like her friend from Kiyosumi, Yuuki, when Ako was younger (in the years since Nodoka moved away, Ako grew her hair out and no longer has Yuuki's hairstyle). As such, when Nishida the reporter is shown a picture of Nodoka with her friends, she asks if Yuuki is in the picture, but is told that it's Ako, not Yuuki.
  • Sgt. Frog:
    • The Musha Kero saga takes place on a planet full of people resembling our heroes' friends. Their actual characters range from disturbingly similar (Fuyuki, Momoka) to completely different (Natsumi, Saburo) to something from out of left field (Mois.)
    • One episode revolved around a girl named Asami who looked exactly like Angol Mois going around and mugging and/or beating people up. The only difference between them was that Asami's eyes were blue while Angol Mois' were gold. It turns out that when Angol Mois first came to Earth she saw Asami beating up the "Sleazy 26" gang and decided to model herself after "Earth's Greatest Warrior," per instructions from her father.
  • Speed Racer: Spritle and Prince Jam.
  • Sword Art Online: In the Alicization anime, we get to see a flashback of Vassago Cassals aka PoH showing his (unnamed) half-brother, who bears an uncanny resemblance to Kirito, possibly to reinforce even further the antagonism between them.
  • In Tokyo Mew Mew, Mashio from the PS2 game and Aoyamada from a filler episode are Identical Strangers to Aoyama Masaya, with similar personalities as well. He's never around when this happens, as both instances of Ichigo meeting them are in remote areas where practically nobody but them lives. Given that they're scattered across the continent and have the same personality traits that are explicitly stated to have been implanted in Masaya by Deep Blue, it's possible that said alien overlord actually thought ahead and left a few spare host bodies lying around.
  • In A Tropical Fish Yearns for Snow, Koyuki Honami goes on a Class Trip to Tokyo, where her friend and kohai Konatsu Amano attended school before coming to her school in Ehime. While there, Koyuki runs into a girl who looks almost exactly like Konatsu, right down to the uniform from Konatsu's old school.
  • Queen Diana Soleil and Kihel Heim from ∀ Gundam are almost identical, except for small details (Diana has straight hair while Kihel has Ojou Ringlets, Kihel's skin is a bit tanned from working her family's farm, and their eyes are drawn slightly differently). So after meeting, they pull a Twin Switch. It was just supposed to be a one-time joke, then the Plot happens. In the end Diana stays on Earth and lives happily with The Hero Loran, while Kihel leaves our planet and becomes the Queen of the Moon.
  • In CLAMP's short manga series Wish, the strong resemblance between demon prince Kokuyo and stoic human Shuichiro Kudo is repeatedly commented on by other characters. It being CLAMP, this is never given any vague hint of an explanation.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V, Yuya Sakaki shares his face with no less than three other characters, all from different dimensions, as does his childhood friend, Yuzu. They have the same faces, but despite everyone acting like they're totally identical they're easy to tell apart because they have different hair and tend to wear very different expressions: Yuto, one of Yuya's look-alikes, is a Perpetual Frowner, while Yuya always tries to keep a smile on his face.

    Asian Animation 
  • The Motu Patlu episode "Duplicate Patlu" is about Motu and Patlu accompanying Dr. Jhatka to a hill station. A man named Taklu who looks exactly like Patlu lives there. Cue obligatory confusion over which one is which.

    Audio Plays 
  • In the BBC Audio Fourth Doctor Adventures, the Fourth Doctor discovers that, apart from having a different hairstyle and no beard, he's identical to Rasputin.
  • In the Big Finish Doctor Who audio The Church And The Crown, Peri is a dead ringer for Queen Anne of France, and is accidentally kidnapped in place of the Queen, driving much of the plot.

    Comic Books 
  • Archie Meets the Punisher featured the Punisher following a criminal identical to Archie to Riverdale. In a subversion, they didn't look completely alike; only similar enough to cause some confusion. Even Moose could tell they were not the same once he got a closer look.
  • In a Why Not? crossover from Dynamite Comics featuring Army of Darkness' Ash Williams and Xena. Bruce Campbell's likeness played a triple role, Ash, a mini Ash called Ash-It, and Autolycus. The two "full size" Bruces being mistaken for each other is a plot point. (And very Xena-appropriate; see below.)
    • Ash also met an identical stranger in the Evil Dead/Marvel Zombies crossover...but it was actually Ashley G. Williams, a supermarket employee who happened to be the Marvel Universe version of Ash.
  • Asterix: Played with in Asterix and the Actress. When wearing the same clothes as Panacea and, most important, a blonde wig, the Roman actress Latraviata looks exactly like the real Panacea. Without the wig however, not so much.
  • Captain America
    • There was Sharon Carter and the Red Skull's spy Irma Kruhl. After leaving Irma Bound and Gagged in a closet, Carter was able to flawlessly pass herself off as her with nothing more than a hat and a pair of glasses.
    • When Steve Rogers first met Rick Jones in an issue of The Avengers, he remarked that the boy looked and sounded exactly like his old sidekick Bucky. He even briefly took on Rick as his new sidekick before the writers realized how creepy that was.
  • In one Golden Age Batman story, Robin turned out to be a dead ringer for a boy prince from a Ruritania. When Robin is knocked out defending the prince, the prince decides to have some fun by swapping clothes with Robin and taking his place.
  • Batman: The Trigger Twins, a pair of low-rent villains. They first met while trying to rob the same bank, and were dumbstruck at their identical appearances. When they get to talking about it, they conclude that they have to be twins who were separated at birth.
  • For Black Widow’s 2019 series Web of the Black Widow, Marvel themselves lampshaded on the variant cover for issue 2 (as a tie-in to The Amazing Mary Jane series) that Nat is a Identical Stranger to MJ. Although the two women have conveniently never actually met. (Except in the Spider-Man newspaper strip, in which they met when MJ was filming the second Marvella movie ... and Natasha was her stunt double.)
  • Used several times in Disney Mouse and Duck Comics, but notably in a Mickey Mouse story where Mickey happens to appear identical to a king who needs surgery and is afraid that the power vacuum caused by even his brief absence could inspire his enemies to overthrow him. He's a good and fair king, so Mickey agrees to take his place for a while and does a surprisingly good job at it.
  • In an early issue of Fantastic Four, by simply putting on a wig and a spare FF uniform, blind sculptress Alicia Masters looked exactly like Sue Stormnote  — enough that she could successfully infiltrate the FF! This hasn't really been mentioned since, but logically means that not only were Reed Richards and Ben Grimm in love with identical women, so was Johnny Storm, in one storyline... and the woman looked exactly like his sister!
  • The Golden Age The Flash story "Anything Can Happen!" shows four Flashes on the cover. The story delivers, though they're never all in one place. Jay Garrick is the first; a banker who happens to look just like him is the second; a substitute who wears a mask to impersonate this banker at boring functions is the third; and a mannequin wearing that same mask to fool the bad guys is the fourth.
  • Ghostbusters 101 Issue #4 has the reboot Ghostbusters notice the similarities between the OG ghostbusters and random people they've met, noting Patty's uncle, Martin Heiss and "that cabbie" as resembling Winston, Peter and Ray, respectively. (They're all played by the same actors in the 2016 movie.)
  • Green Arrow: Travis Morgan, the lead character of The Warlord, looks like a white-haired version of Oliver Queen. In fact, during Warlord creator Mike Grell's tenure as writer of Green Arrow, he wrote an issue where Travis ends up in Seattle during one of his trips out of Skartaris and ends up having to team up with Ollie and Dinah after being accosted by several criminals mistaking him for Ollie after a crime boss put a bounty on Ollie's head.
  • In Marvel Comics, Flatman, aka Dr. Val Ventura, looks exactly like and has roughly the same exact powers as Mr. Fantastic of the Fantastic Four. The only difference is that Flatman is, well, flat, his entire body being less than an inch thick. This is never ever commented on, no matter how obvious it is. Later became a Running Gag in Great Lakes Avengers.
  • Played for Laughs in Guardians Team-Up 10# (2015) as She-Hulk teams up with Gamora and as noted in the comic they’re practically identical besides Jen being a bit taller and more muscly and Gamora having her distinct yellow eye patches (which Shulkie herself gets as well when dressing up as Gamora). A mafioso lampshades it In-Universe upon seeing She-Hulk and Gamora come towards him, asking since when were there “two She Hulks” and if he’s seeing double at which the green action girls clarify he isn’t seeing double but he will be soon before giving him a Megaton Punch.
  • Iznogoud: "The Lookalike" revolves around Iznogoud attempting to use Aristides Kingsizos, a merchant who looks just like the Caliph, to replace the potentate and announce his abdication in favour of the vizier, only for the lookalike and the genuine article to meet and befriend each other over a game of cards (or boules — more precisely, petanque — in the cartoon). At the end of the story, the merchant's partner comes looking for him, and he looks exactly like Iznogoud.
  • The Kang Dynasty: Marcus, the son of Kang, who fell in love with Warbird, and Marcus, the son of Immortus, who abducted, drugged and raped her a long time ago. They are not the same Marcus, but have the same face, the same voice, the same manners... Justified (a bit), after all Kang and Immortus are actually the same time-traveling man at different points of maturity. Or, said more simple, both Marcus are brothers (but don't ever tell him that).
  • In Gunsmoke Western #64, Kid Colt encounters a fugitive named Sandy "Baby-Face" Smith, who looks uncannily like him. So much so, in fact, that Smith is able to steal Colt's distinctive calfskin vest and white hat and pass himself off as Kid Colt. Colt is only able to establish his true identity by demonstrating that he is the superior gunslinger.
  • Killing and Dying: The narrator of "Amber Sweet" looks a lot like a famous porn star and is frequently mistaken for her, to her detriment.
  • The Martian Manhunter once found his secret identity had a doppelganger, a prince in some minuscule European country. He is, of course, a shape shifter, though in this instance he had created his appearance at random instead of copying it, so it's as close as he can get to playing it straight.
  • Mary Marvel 1945: In issue #7, Mary Batson meets Joan Dumont, who is completely unrelated to Mary but could pass off as her twin. Actually, Joan makes Mary pose as herself, and both Joan's father and bodyguard are fooled.
  • Our Fighting Forces #123, debut of the Losers, featured Captain Storm impersonating a dead spy who looked identical to him — including the wooden left leg.
  • In Paperinik New Adventures issue #28 we have a Coolflame identical to Xari, Xadhoom's lost fiancee who had fallen into Evronian hands. For most of the story, the Coolflame is thought to be Xari, and is only at the end that Uno discover and reveals that the Coolflame was not Xari, just a near-identical member of a different alien species whose resemblance to Xari had been increased by the Coolflamization process.
  • Papyrus: A poor fisherman is one for an ill/injured pharaoh Merenptah in "The Metamorphosis of Imhotep."
  • Robin (1993): When Scarab tries to kill Robin in his civilian identity she comes up with a list of people who match her profile and look eerily similar to Tim Drake. When Ulysses tries the same thing (though his list is shorter because Scarab got partway through hers) with Red Robin he kills three guys who could have easily passed for Tim with adjustments to their hair, a bit of makeup and colored contacts before Tim figures out what's going on. The look alike Tim meets and saves has a stronger jawline and larger shoulders than Tim but is still rather similar.
  • Rulah, Jungle Goddess: In "The Slumbering City" (Zoot Comics #11), Rulah learns that she is a dead ringer for Nisaba, the evil queen of the city of Ionia: a city which hs been in suspended animation for 5,000 years and just awoken.
  • A common trope in Silver Age Superman comics.
    • Not only do Superman, Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen, Supergirl and other supporting characters encounter their own randomly-occurring identical duplicates on Earth, they even have duplicates on Krypton (and a single Kryptonian city, at that—the Bottle City of Kandor!)
    • Supergirl's first nemesis, Lesla-Lar was identical to Kara; to the point Lesla posed as Supergirl for several days in The Unknown Supergirl, and neither her cousin Superman nor Supergirl's adoptive parents suspected anything. In Strangers at the Heart's Core, Lesla became (more) unhinged and convinced herself that she and Supergirl were twins. Supergirl replied it was impossible they were sisters (they weren't even born on the same planet) and their similarity was due to some "cosmic coincidence".
    • In The Girl with the X-Ray Mind Lesla-Lar impersonates Lena Thorul, who is not even Kryptonian.
    • Justified with Van-Zee, who adopted the identity of Kandorian superhero Nightwing from Superman, and looks exactly like the Man of Steel. The explanation? They're cousins. He ended up marrying one of Lois's lookalikes.
    • In The Untold Story of Argo City, the Danvers are asked to adopt a Kryptonian girl named Dar-Lin. They note that she looks just like Kara, saving her brunette hair.
    • "Supergirl's Big Brother": Biff Rigger is able to impersonate a total stranger like Jan Danvers, fooling even Jan's parents, because they look amazingly alike even if they are not even remotely related.
    • Some readers pointed out how often this plot device was used. In response, a DC editor actually explained that it's not overused... because it's science: "According to Professor Warren Dow, authority on genetics, heredity and twins, 'Every human being on Earth has at least 20 doubles who look like him or her.'" (It may or may not surprise you to learn that Professor Dow's existence cannot be confirmed by cursory Internet research.)
  • "Dotty the Double" of Tammy looked exactly like the wealthy Lady Jayne Smythe. Naturally, this enabled the two crooks who kidnapped her to pass her off as the aristocrat.
  • In the 1950 version of Tintin book Land of Black Gold, parts of the early plot lies on a misunderstanding caused by Tintin being a look-alike of an Irgun member named Salomon Goldstein. This is absent from the revised final version released in 1972 (no longer set in British Mandate Palestine but in a Qurac country).
  • The Warlord:
    • The white-haired Warlord, Travis Morgan, ends up in Seattle, home of blonde Green Arrow. Morgan is mistaken for the persona-non-grata Arrow and is consequently attacked by half of Seattle's criminal population, leading to a confrontation with his double to find out why everyone in town hates him.
      Morgan: Whatever you've been doing to piss these people off...cut it out!!
    • In Morgan's own series, Morgan had a double who was used by his foes to attempt to take over the kingdom.
    • Shakira turns out to be a dead ringer for a kidnapped princess, leading to an Emergency Impersonation scenario.
  • This is how The Wasp entered into Hank Pym's life — she looked similar to his dead wife Maria Trovaya. Later comics double down on this with the flashbacks to Maria having her identical to Jan to the extent they even have the same hairdo. Confusing matters even further, Nadia Pym, Hank’s daughter is also a dead ringer for Janet even though she’s not her biological daughter with the late Maria giving birth to her instead. The justification is that Marvel just wanted a substitute for Hope who is Hank and Janet’s daughter in Marvel Comics 2 and the MCU, without Jan herself having to give birth to her.
  • Wonder Woman:
    • Originally, she met her injured love interest's nurse, who conveniently looked exactly like her, was also named Diana, and needed Wonder Woman's help to join her boyfriend in another country as well. Wonder Woman bought the Diana Prince identity from this nurse.
    • Sensation Comics: At one point a woman falls in love with Steve Trevor from a photograph in a newspaper, and Steve and Diana find another military man that looks just like Steve for the lady.
    • Wonder Woman (1942): While Diana and the Holliday Girls are briefly enslaved on Saturn the Saturnian slaver Eviless takes note of how remarkably similar she looks to the Holliday Girl Virginia True and later uses this knowledge to kidnap and impersonate Virginia in order to get revenge on Wonder Woman.
  • Wonder Woman probably borrowed this set-up from pulp icon The Shadow, who had a similar relationship with his alter ego, playboy Lamont Cranston (for the record, the Shadow began life as flying ace Kent Allard. One could do a lot worse than latching onto a layabout millionaire).
  • X-Men:
    • After Jean Grey kills herself in The Dark Phoenix Saga, Cyclops eventually meets Madelyne Pryor, a non-mutant airplane pilot who's a dead ringer for the departed Jean. At first, Scott thinks Maddie may somehow be Jean/Phoenix reincarnated, but she proves not to be. They eventually fall in love, get married, have a son, and Scott retires from the X-Men. This was the writer's original plan, for Maddie to just be an unrelated woman who happened to look exactly like Jean. This trope then got subverted by Executive Meddling, when it turns out Maddie is actually a clone of Jean created by Mister Sinister as part of his plan to get Scott and Jean (or someone with her genetic profile) to reproduce and create a genetically perfect being, and Maddie Goes Mad from the Revelation - and influence from the demons of Limbo - awakens her latent mutant powers plus black magic and becomes the villainous Goblin Queen. Then she dies. Then it turns out that, not only was Jean not dead (just in a cocoon at the bottom of the Hudson river), she was never actually Phoenix in the first place but was just impersonated by the cosmic entity Phoenix (maybe; that last part gets retconned constantly).note 
    • In a What If? story, Wolverine is hurled through a time warp to Conan the Barbarian's time period, and quickly comes face-to-face with Red Sonja, whom he at first mistakes for Jean Grey. When she challenges him, he realizes it isn't Jean, but she "sure has Jeanie's spunk though." To make this even weirder, at the conclusion of the story, Conan is thrown through the same warp to the modern time, is confronted by the other X-Men, and mistakes Jean for Sonja.
    • Rose O'Hara, Logan’s caretaker from Wolverine: The Origin is intentionally identical to Jean as well right to down to the color of their eyes. Literally the only differences between them are the fact Rose is a human and Irish while Jean is an American and a mutant. Their similarity is generally a indicator as to why Wolverine is so infatuated with Jean despite not being able to remember Rose due to century spanning amnesia; she reminds him deeply of the first woman he fell in love with.
      • The same arc also includes Logan's half-brother Dog Logan, who ends up bearing an uncanny resemblance to Sabretooth, Wolverine's archenemy, by the end of the story. The general presumption by readers and even many writers for a long time was that he was a young Sabretooth, but this was never made explicit in the comic and later declared to not be the case, with Dog later returning and even meeting Sabretooth just to drive it home.

    Comic Strips 
  • Garfield has had this happen several times in the many different media he's been in, and Jon has had it happen at least once, he even quotes the "everybody has a double somewhere" line when it happens.
  • In one story from Wally Wood's Sally Forth, the squad escapes captivity from savage tribesmen by having the Dumb Muscle team member pass as one of the guards — just by taking his shirt off.

    Fan Works 
  • Avengers: Infinite Wars;
    • When meeting the Jedi Council for the first time, the Avengers all briefly assume that Mace Windu is Nick Fury. This Running Gag is starting Mace Windu to irk. They meet one another, much to Jedi, Avengers and Clones' shock in chapter 106
    • Steve privately reflected that he found Padme Amidala familiar in their first meeting, although Hope van Dyne is the first one to 'recognize' Padme as Jane Foster's double. Jane and Padmé FINALLY met in chapter 104, much to their shock.
    • When watching The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, the Jedi are surprised when Saruman appears on the big screen, since he is played by Christopher Lee, who also plays Count Dooku in Star Wars. Curiously, while in other cases both doppelgängers are alive, in this case Lee has already passed by the time this story happens.
  • Calvin & Hobbes: The Series:
    • Socrates is identical to Hobbes save for red stripes on his tail.
    • Andy discovers a pharaoh that looks just like him in "Pharaoh Andrew".
  • Though they don't meet until the sequel, in Child of the Storm, it is repeatedly noted that Harry and Clark Kent look exactly alike — though the resemblance diminishes to siblings/close cousins as Harry starts resembling his mother a little more. This one is actually justified, however — when Thor was incarnated as James Potter, Odin went out of his way to give the House of El a nod by moulding James!Thor's appearance to mimic the 'El look'.
  • Doofenshmirtz Hero Incorporated! notes the physical similarity between Doof and Re-Destro, which even Dan Povenmire has made a video about. However, it turns out Re-Destro isn't Doof's alternate in the MHA world... he's Roger's alternate.
  • Fates Collide: Robin Hood looks like Roman Torchwick. Neo does a double take when she sees him, while Emerald Sustrai wonders why she is attracted to him, since she hates Roman.
  • Fate/Harem Antics:
    • Servant Ruler is Saint Martha. Shirou comments that Martha looks like an older version of Sakura.
    • Saber and Jeanne Alter have similar faces. Since Jeanne Alter hates her original self, she attacks Saber due to the resemblance.
  • In Power Girl story A Force of Four, Kryptonian villain Mala is nearly identical to Superman and impersonated him once in the past. Lois notes he looks right like her late husband.
  • Glitched Miko AU
    • The professor who created Miko looks almost exactly like Miko's mother. It's implied that they are actually sisters.
    • Miko's would-be assassin M-2 could be her identical twin. Which makes sense as M-2 is a product of the same program that created Miko (i.e M-1)
  • Hijink” opens with the discovery that Agent 99 (Get Smart) and Andrea “Andy” Sachs (The Devil Wears Prada) are each other’s exact double, which results in Andy being abducted by the rogue Agent 23 along with Max. This is subsequently explained as CONTROL’s plastic surgeon saw Andy in a café once and became so obsessed with her look he deliberately gave 99 a matching face during her subsequent plastic surgery
  • Ukuthe Lorain, one of the Big Bad couple's victims in Hivefled, was chosen because apart from her horns she bore a striking resemblance to the Grand Highblood's dead matesprit; then again, the Grand Highblood is certifiably insane with a heavy dash of Yandere, so she may not have looked all that similar.
  • This is a plot point in Infinity Train: Boiling Point: Hazel Hughes from the Apex is like a mirror image of the canonical Hazel, who has decided to take her spot on the Apex to further her own goals.
  • Khaos Omega often does this, usually due to multiverse theory. Ends up causing an unexpected discovery in the debut of Ryo Zuccarello and his harem the Desert Angels when Rainbow Angel Marissa Malachite (a Khaos-altered variant of Miltia) jumps to a Khaos-created transformation from a far longer line originating from Dragon Ball Z and ends up undergoing a particularly powerful Chaos Reaction (a transformation-modifying phenomenon that had notably caused true OC Hollie to get a new limiter outfit-wise).
    • Often times Khaos will give different variants other names, cases such as Marissa above involving legally changing their names (mostly to blend in when in dimensions like Jet's home one). The titular Amethyst Angel and her youngest homeworld teammate even adopt nicknames to help tell other variants apart (Anise and Natsume going by Amethyst and Zephyr respectively).
  • Kimi No Na Iowa: Fusou/Harumi and Ayaka look similar enough, height aside, that none less than the former's own sister and close friend of the family are confused by the resemblance, and they spend part of their first meeting inconclusively discussing the possibility of shared ancestry. The identical looks magnify their contrasts in other areas like personality and shipgirl nature.
  • Invoked in “Mistaken”, when Will Tippin (Alias) is arrested because he’s been mistaken for Lieutenant Templeton “Face” Peck (The A-Team) (basically an Actor Allusion as they’re both played by Bradley Cooper).
  • In Necessary To win Teru notices the similarity between Komaki and a younger Saki's hairstyle, although Komaki has darker hair and much larger breasts. It's implied that Teru also momentarily mistook Awai for someone else when they first met, although Awai's boasting seemed to convince Teru that she wasn't who she was thinking of.
  • During the Cult of Bya no Kuei Arc in One Piece: Parallel Works, Wolfgang is mistaken for Prince Bya no Kuei, the royal prince of the island that Capricorns are visiting. However, this becomes Played for Drama when Heathcliffe witnesses the suicide of Prince Bya no Kuei and the Capricorns mistake it for Wolfgang's suicide. Fortunately, the Capricorns manage to clear everything up by the end of the arc.
  • Our Blades Are Sharp: Domeric Bolton's black tourney armor studded with rubies gives him a passing resemblance to the long-dead Rhaegar Targaryen. King Robert Baratheon even mistakes Domeric for Rhaegar and nearly charges the tourney field in a rage before Ned points out the differences.
  • In Shadow of Another Hero, Link looks identical to a boy that Zelda once knew, except that the current Link has green eyes.
  • "Top Secret" is a triple crossover between Quantum Leap, The X-Files and Lois & Clark where a key plot element is the fact that Lois Lane resembles a younger version of Sam Beckett's wife Donna (both were played by Teri Hatcher). Not only does Sam give Lois Lane a tape with detailed information on Quantum Leap during a leap because her resemblance to Donna helped Sam feel that he could trust her, but later on Lois is able to help her partner Clark Kent and new associates FBI Agents Mulder and Scully infiltrate the Project just because of her resemblance to Donna (they ran into a new staff member on the Project who had previously known Donna and mistook Lois for her).
  • Turnabout Storm's Sonata is uncannily similar to Phoenix's mentor, Mia Fey, in both voice and looks; Phoenix even manages to mix her up with Mia after first hearing her. To make things weirder, she's also an unicorn from Canterlot.
  • In the RWBY/The Legend of Zelda crossover Unknown Legends, several characters comment that other than the pointy ears, Link looks like Jaune Arc.
  • Shen Yuan from The Untold Tale shares a startling likeness to Shen Qingqiu. If Luo Binghe thinks it's a ploy from the Heavens to prevent a filthy demon from marrying a Celestial by giving him this particular face (as Luo Binghe hated Shen Qingqiu to the point he tortured the man to death), it has the potential to land Shen Yuan in hot water as he receives a premonition of being murdered because of a Mistaken Identity.
  • Where We Don't Belong:
    • Everyone comments on the similarity between Nia and Mio; not only is Mio arrested under a case of Mistaken Identity, but Nia talks to her about Flesh Eaters after Brighid declares she's one, and Torna's Blade tracker identifies them as nearly identical. Mio's dream implies that Nia is in fact her mother.
    • Downplayed when Sena and Mio see XC2 Vandham, as his appearance due to his Urayan heritage compared to "regular human" XC3 Vandham trips them up until they hear his distinctive voice and hear other people use his name, then the similarities hit them like bricks.

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Abeltje: The Dutch Abeltje is a dead-ringer for the American boy Johnny Cockle-Smith, who was kidnapped while on holiday in Perugona. Abeltje himself is captured by Johnny's mother while visiting New York City, who believes him to be her missing son. After looking through Johnny's belongings, Abeltje makes it his mission to free his look-alike, switching places with him in the process.
  • Exploited in The Addams Family. When the film starts, Uncle Fester has been missing for a long time and Gomez's lawyer is in debt to a loan shark. Then he notices that the loan shark's son bears a striking resemblance to Fester and they have him go to Gomez pretending to be him. Subverted at the end when it turns out the loan shark's son actually is Fester suffering from amnesia.
  • In Adventures in Babysitting, there is the Playboy Playmate who is a dead ringer for babysitter Chris.
  • In Angel on My Shoulder, a gangster looks exactly like Judge Frederick Parker and, aided by the Devil, attempts to ruin the Judge's reputation.
  • In Asako I & II the titular woman meets a man who looks exactly like her ex lover. She dates him without letting him know that he looks exactly like her previous love.
  • The Assignment (1997). While holidaying in Israel, a Cuban-American naval officer is mistaken for notorious terrorist Carlos the Jackal and arrested. The matter is quickly resolved, but the Mossad and CIA realise they have an opportunity to kill off the real Carlos, and recruit the officer into a scheme to make the KGB think Carlos has become a CIA informant. But it's not enough for him just to look like Carlos; he has to think and act like him as well, so he finds himself Becoming the Mask.
  • In The Awful Dr. Orloff, Inspector Edgar Tanner's fiancée Wanda Bronsky is identical to Dr. Orloff's daughter Melissa.
  • The comedy Big Business (1988) has a classic explanation concerning twins played by Bette Midler and Lily Tomlin.
  • In Bullseye, Roger Moore and Michael Caine play dual roles as a pair of small time con-men and a pair of inept nuclear physicists who believe they have invented a limitless supply of energy. The con men use their resemblance to the scientists to con their way into the scientists' safe deposit boxes and steal the formula, but in so doing, they become entangled in a shady world of spies and international intrigue.
  • In Dave, Kevin Kline plays both the President of the United States and Regular Guy Dave, who resembles and winds up impersonating the POTUS.
  • The Family Jewels: Donna's chauffeur is identical to her six uncles for reasons unknown. This becomes a Plot Point when Willard impersonates Everett Peyton, one of Donna's uncles, so he can become her new father. Not even Everett's brothers realize something's up.
  • The title character of Charlie Chaplin's The Floorwalker looks rather like the Tramp (mainly due to his similar moustache and hairstyle). The Floorwalker exploits this similarity by conning the Tramp to take his place so the Floorwalker can make off with the store's stolen takings. In fact the similarity is close enough that audiences may be confused at first (particularly if they're watching a bad quality print).
  • In Francis in the Navy, U.S. Army officer Lt. Peter Sterling gets mistaken for his lookalike in the U.S. Navy, Bosun's Mate 'Slicker' Donevan, and as a result gets promptly shipped to Donevan's base.
  • In the 1946 comedy Freddie Steps Out, Freddie, a high school student, looks just like Frankie Troy, a popular singer. This leads to all kinds of trouble when Freddie's friends start a campaign to get Frankie to perform at the school.
  • Goebbels and Geduldig is a German Black Comedy film in which an imprisoned Jewish man (Ulrich Mühe) happens to look exactly like one of Those Wacky Nazis, Joseph Goebbels (also Mühe), and a switcheroo happens.
  • The Great Dictator: Unnamed Barber and Adenoid Hynkel.
  • In The Great Race, Professor Fate looks exactly like the prince of a Ruritania-like small country. This leads to a subplot, parodying The Prisoner of Zenda.
  • Implied Trope in The Grey Zone. Never discussed, because she obviously wasn't a celebrity during her life, only posthumously, but the Hungarian jewish girl who survived the gas chambers actually resembles Anne Frank quite a bit.
  • The king in Korean movie Gwanghae (2012) finds and employs a Body Double who looks just like him.
  • In History of the World Part I, during the segment on the French Revolution, Mel Brooks plays King Louis XVI, and the "piss boy" who works at the palace. When a double for the king is needed, the piss boy is given the part.
  • In Hollow Triumph, criminal on the run Johnny Muller and psychiatrist Dr. Victor Bartok are dead ringers, apart from the scar on Bartok's cheek.
  • Charlie Chaplin plays two roles as The Tramp and a look-alike millionaire in The Idle Class.
  • In the Swedish movie Immediate Boarding, two 11-year olds — a boy and a girl — run into each other at an airport, realize that they're practically identical, and decide to swap places. Both characters are played by the same girl.
  • The Olsen Twins movie It Takes Two has the twins play Identical Strangers who meet and befriend each other and then get their respective single parents to hook up.
  • In the Soviet comedy Ivan Vasilievich Changes Profession, two characters named this way are a Soviet bureaucrat Ivan Bunsha and Tsar Ivan the Terrible (naturally, both played by the same actor). An inventor's attempt at building a Time Machine results in both Ivans swapping places. Bunsha ends up having to impersonate the tsar until the inventor can fix the time machine. The play, on which the film is based, instead goes with the Identical Grandson trope.
  • This trope is one of the plot points in Johnny Stecchino.
  • This plays a huge part in Akira Kurosawa's Kagemusha, which is about a warlord's double.
  • The hero and love interest of Kiss Kiss Bang Bang enjoy playing Spot The Celebrity Doppelganger. In one bar they see Punk Rock Steven Seagal, Native American Joe Pesci, and Brazilian Billy Bob Thornton ("Oh, that's a bit of a stretch..."). The casting people must have had a ball finding them...
  • One episode of The Little Rascals, "Alfalfa's Double", features the titular boy meeting up with his identical upper-class double; naturally they decide to switch places for the day. Hilarity Ensues.
  • The Lizzie Mc Guire Movie: Lizzie and her classmates take a school trip to Italy, and she discovers she has a striking resemblance to a pop star named Isabella (also played by Hilary Duff). Isabella's singing partner Paolo encourages Lizzie to become a lip-syncing stand-in for Isabella, and she's exposed to a world of fashion, fame and glamour. Lizzie realises she's lost track off what really matters, and together she and Isabella expose Paolo for being a fake.
  • In The Majestic, the entire plot is based around an amnesiac Jim Carrey being mistaken for his Identical Stranger twin, who was a soldier in WWII. Who sounds like Matt Damon.
  • In Miś Ochucki's scheme hangs on finding one for himself and briefly stealing his identity. He does find Staszek, but — let's say that's not the end of the shenanigans.
  • The Disney Channel movie Model Behavior has Alex Burrows as your average American teen who looks identical to teen supermodel, Janine Adams, except that she wears glasses. They're both played by Maggie Lawson.
  • In The Monster Maker, Dr. Markoff's obsession with Patricia stems from the fact that she is a dead ringer for his late wife (seen only on photograph, where it is the same actress with a different hairstyle).
  • In Monte Carlo (2011), small town girl Grace Bennett is a dead ringer for the infamous British socialite Cordelia Winthrop Scott. Despite her friends claiming they can tell the difference, she manages to fool Cordelia's aunt for awhile.
  • Naked Lunch: These show up throughout the film with a lot of the actors portraying supposedly unrelated characters. Given the mindbending nature of the plot, it's hard to tell if they're actually the same people or not. For instance, Joan Lee (Bill's wife) and Joan Frost (Tom Frost's wife) are physically identical. The two NYC policemen near the start of the film reappear at the end as two Annexian border guards. The actor who voices the bugs (and sounds a lot like William S. Burroughs, for that matter) has a small role as an exterminator colleague whom Lee questions on the subway.
  • In Onthe Riviera Danny Kaye plays American entertainer Jack Martin and French pilot Henri Duran. The likeness between the two is capitalized on as part of Martin's act.
  • Hugh Jackman's drunken doppelganger plays a key role in The Prestige.
  • Unlike most of the other musical stars in A Song Is Born playing themselves, Benny Goodman plays one of the cloistered professors, Prof. Magenbruch. At one point in the film, the musicians lament the lack of a clarinet player among them and wish that Benny Goodman could be there with them. Frisbee notes that they have a very good clarinet player among his fellow academicians that might be able to stand in... and brings in Magenbruch. (Nobody notices the resemblance, but the audience is in on the gag.)
  • The comedy Start the Revolution Without Me has an interesting example: two different sets of twins (one from a peasant family, one from an aristocrat one) happen to look exactly identical to the other pair. The peasant and noble mothers each give birth to a set of identical twins at the same doctor, and the babies are mixed up so each family gets one from each pair of twins.
  • Underground: the movie based on events in a previous scene uses actors who look identical to the real people, only with slightly different hair. The resemblance is so perfect that Blacky believes that his old nemesis has returned and shoots at him.
  • The 1935 comedy The Whole Town's Talking has Edward G. Robinson as a vicious gangster and a meek accounting clerk who looks just like him.
  • Used for symbolism in Wild Strawberries. The joyful, happy Sara that elderly Isak meets on the road, and the cousin Sara that young Isak was in love with, are played by the same actress. Sara 2.0 is involved in a love triangle with her young friends just like Sara 1 was in a love triangle with Isak and Sigfrid. Sara 2 even says to Isak as she's going away that “It’s you I really love, you know—today, tomorrow, always!”
  • In The Film of the Series of Wild Wild West, Kevin Kline plays President Grant and Artemus Gordon, who occasionally disguises himself as a perfect double of Grant.
  • The Leslie Nielsen movie Wrongfully Accused has a scene where the main character defaces his wanted poster so no one will make the connection that it's him. Another character played by Nielsen inexplicably appears with the same features he drew on the picture, and is promptly arrested.

  • Ascendance of a Bookworm: Myne, who's from the poorer part of town, remarks that a much richer acquaintance's cook looks a lot like her best friend's mother, and the character designs from the illustrations follow suit. There is no indication those two characters know each other.
  • Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey features one where the eponymous Brat bears an uncanny resemblance to the missing Patrick Ashby. As it turns out, he's actually a lost relative and the real Patrick had been murdered — the deception serves to uncover the murderer of the real Patrick.
  • Butler Parker not only encountered a doppleganger of himself, but over the couse of the series all four main characters encounterred doubles.
  • Marion Zimmer Bradley's Darkover universe has a principle that everything except the psychic matrix stones has one exact duplicate somewhere in the universe; a couple of the novels have people locating their doubles for plot purposes. In another book, a Terran who simply happens to look extremely similar to a Darkovan nobleman is kidnapped by mistake.
  • 'Discworld':
    • The Truth: The villains of the book discover that one random haberdasher named Charlie in the city of Pseudopolis is near idential match for Lord Vetinari of Anhk-Morpork. They plan to take down Vetinari by having the double commit some crime and framing Vetinari for it forcing the man to step down. After the criminals are exposed, Charlie is saved. He is sometimes called upon to play Vetinari again by the man himself when the Partician wants to take some time away from the city and not let on he's not there.
    • Wyrd Sisters, where the hidden heir to the throne looks almost exactly like the Fool. Seemingly subverted when we find out that the Fool is the bastard son of the former King and a peasant woman. Then re-subverted in a different way when we find out that it's the other way round: the Fool's parents were correct, but the supposed heir is actually the son of the former Queen and the former Fool, meaning they still share the same father.
  • The Doctor Who Expanded Universe short story collection "Short Trips: Past Tense" does it twice in a very meta way. The story "Thief Of Sherwood" is a metafictional Scrapbook Story, told via Radio Times and Doctor Who Magazine articles about an entirely fictional six-part First Doctor serial in which Robin Hood turns out to look exactly like Ian Chesterton, and the cast list credits "Ian Chesterton/Robin Hood - William Russell". The cast list also notes that Maid Marion is played by Anette Wilkes, who would go on to play Polly the year after "Thief of Sherwood" was suposedly broadcast. The final story, "That Time I Almost Destroyed The World While Looking For A Dress" had Polly wander through the previous stories in the collection, and sure enough, she looks exactly like Maid Marion.
  • In Richard Powell's Don Quixote, U.S.A. narrator Arthur and rebel leader El Gavilan bear a strong resemblance which is heightened once Arthur grows a beard, leading to several mixups. During their initial meeting Arthur wonders if his piratical ancestor Captain Josiah Goodpasture ever made a stop at San Marcos.
  • Don't Look Back: Much is made throughout of how similar Sam looks to her deceased friend Cassie, down to similar hair and eye colors. Sam theorizes this was why she was first drawn to Cassie and immediately befriended her. Subverted when it's revealed that it's because they're related: they're half-sisters through a shared father.
  • José Saramago's The Double: a man finds an exact double of him on TV and starts stalking him. Tragedy ensues.
  • The actor in Robert A. Heinlein's Double Star isn't perfectly identical to the politician he is assigned to impersonate, but he is close enough to fake it.
  • Dragon And Phoenix by Joanne Bertin doesn't follow this trope precisely, but there are two different unrelated men who bear close enough resemblances to the Emperor, helped by the fact that they're of similarly mixed ethnicity, to be mistaken for his brothers. They each have sex with a different one of his concubines, so that these women will produce children who look like they could be the Emperor's. He's sterile, himself.
  • The Fiend With Twenty Faces: A few years before the novel begins, detective Akechi Kogoro met his own double and secretly trained him to impersonate Akechi if the need ever arose. This is revealed at the end to explain how Akechi was able to escape from being kidnapped by Twenty Faces—that was the other guy.
  • The Flashman novel Royal Flash relies on this trope, as the title character's uncanny resemblance to a Danish prince is the reason he gets dragged into his adventures in said story in the first place.
  • In Gaunt's Ghosts novel Only in Death, an allied regiment's Major Berenson bears a startling resemblance to the now-dead Caffran.
  • In the sixth Geronimo Stilton book, an actor is hired by Geronimo's Arch Rival, Sally Ratmousen, to impersonate him as a ploy to get her hands on his newspaper. The actor looks (and acts) so much like him that even his closest family is fooled. Later, he pulls the same trick on Sally by making up his male cousin to look just like her and get the newspaper back.
  • In Heretics of Dune, the Reverend Mothers Darwi Odrade and Lucilla are from parallel Bene Gesserit breeding lines, and have very similar faces despite having different body types and an age gap of at least a decade. Upon meeting for the first time, Odrade remarks how strange it is to essentially see your own face looking back at you from someone else.
  • Downplayed in Honor Harrington: Helen Zilwicki happens to bear an extraordinary resemblance to Suzanne Bannister, Bernardus van Dort's late wife (or, at least, a younger version of her). Nobody actually confuses her for Suzanne, but it proves somewhat disarming for Steve Westman (who had had a crush on Suzanne) to see her doppelganger in a Royal Manticoran Navy uniform, and arguably helps him soften towards Manticorans and ultimately give up his struggle against the annexation.
  • Journey to Chaos: Vaya has a strong resemblance to Tiza Sprial, which is why Tiza was kidnapped by the real Vaya's father, Haburt Kloac, and brainwashed into acting like her so as to be a Replacement Goldfish.
  • In Edgar Rice Burroughs's The Mad King, Barney Custer of Beatrice, Nebraska, U.S.A, is taken for the title king. Played more realistically than usual; it's explicitly stated that they are not truly identical in appearance, only sufficiently similar that the description of one matches the other, and the people who make the mistake have only the description to go on, as the king has been sequestered out of the public eye since he was a boy. However, the sequel serial (which became the second half of the novel) slips into a more standard identical-stranger plot, with even those close to the king or to Barney not being able to spot the deception when Barney is dressed as the king.
  • In one book in the Magic Attic Club series, Heather ends up looking so much like a child star that the studio uses her as a stand-in when the star is unable to appear at an awards ceremony.
  • Tashir in Magic's Promise has an uncanny resemblance to Vanyel's dead lover Tylendel. Van has to see him up close and in good light before he can really register the differences. When he meets Tashir's Evil Uncle he's struck by the sense that this is what Tylendel would have looked like if he'd lived past his teens. It's possible that they're related, since they all belong to noble families with some inclination towards the Mage-Gift, but the characters never so much as wonder about that.
  • Les Misérables has Champmathieu, who gets arrested in Jean Valjean's place because he just happens to look exactly like him.
  • Seen in the original Nancy Drew series and the later Nancy Drew Files, with a nearly identical plotline—a young woman impersonates Nancy while she goes about committing various crimes, getting the real Nancy into serious trouble.
  • In "The Case of the Rich Woman", a story in Agatha Christie's Parker Pyne Investigates, the title character apparently has a doppelganger who is a poor servant girl. The truth is rather more complicated.
  • In Phantom, the expansion novel to The Phantom of the Opera, Christine Daae looks identical to Erik's mother, adding an extra layer of wrong to their relationship.
  • The Prince and the Pauper, a story written by Mark Twain. A beggar boy and a prince have a chance encounter and decide to switch places for a short while.
  • King Rudolf and Rudolf Rassendyll in The Prisoner of Zenda although, in this case, they are distant cousins who have never met.
  • Second Apocalypse: Drusas Achamian, a sorcerer, and Krijates Xinemus, a marshal, bare a striking resemblance to each other, to the point that one of Xinemus's men could easily mistake Achamian for his superior officer. Achamian and Xinemus are old friends, having both served as tutors to Prince Nersei Proyas. They are also somewhat foils for one another.
  • Spoofed in the Daniel Pinkwater novel Slaves of Spiegel. The three (supposed) greatest chefs in the universe are Identical Strangers of each other...except for the minor aspect that they're from three entirely different species that don't resemble each other at all. Their names are also Significant Anagrams.
  • In The Snow Queen, Gerda is looking for her missing friend Kai, and a crow tells her that Kai is living as a prince now. Gerda investigates, but the prince is just a guy who looks like Kai. An odd example, because Kai and the prince never even meet; it's just a Red Herring, or rather, an excuse for Gerda to hear the prince's backstory and nestle an extra fairy tale within this one.
  • In The Sorcerer's Daughter, the plot point from Swan Lake of Odette and Odile being inexplicably similar is exploited. However, they turn out to be distinguishable from each other especially when seen together, as Odile is younger, her hair is of a lighter shade, and her eyes are a different color. Finally, it's revealed they are second cousins, hence the likeness.
  • In one of the Expanded Universe side-novels for Stargate Atlantis, John Sheppard turns out to have had an Ancient ancestor who looked almost completely identical to him; someone even remarks that it's no wonder he has such a powerful ATA gene.
  • In the Star Trek: Myriad Universes story A Less Perfect Union, Earth is not part of the Federation and has long had a "cold war" with the Vulcans. An aged T'pol is an ambassador on an Enterprise where Kirk is first officer to Captain Pike. Sarek comes, asking Kirk to arrange a secret meeting with T'Pol, who then vanishes. When Kirk explains this to the Vulcan council, Sarek claims to have no idea what he's talking about and Kirk angrily accuses him of a double-cross. It turns out "Sarek" was actually Keras, the Romulan officer from the episode "Balance of Terror" that was also played by Mark Lenard.
    • T'Pol asks Keras about being surgically altered to look like Sarek. Keras replies that, amazing as it sounds, this is his natural face and he's amazed how much they look alike.
    • At the story's end, Keras defects to the humans. Kirk apologizes to Sarek for the misunderstanding. Sarek tells him it's okay as he saw Keras himself and admits his own son would have been fooled by the resemblance.
  • Played several times in the Sweet Valley High series
    • Surfer Bill Chase becomes infatuated with the twins due to their resemblance to his deceased girlfriend.
    • Elizabeth eyes a guy who resembles her departed boyfriend Todd, but dumps him when she realizes he's a jerk.
    • Older brother Steve dumps his girlfriend Cara at least twice to pursue girls who resemble his dead girlfriend Tricia. Adding insult to injury, despite acknowledging the physical similarity, he refuses to see either girl as her own separate person and instead continues to insist, "She's just like Tricia!", despite all evidence to the contrary. It's not until one girl tells him she deserves better than being used as a substitute and dumps him that he realizes how unhealthy his behavior is.
    • Then the main-character twins encounter their Identical Stranger Margo, who then is revealed to have an identical twin herself — so there actually are four Identical Strangers. All combined with a murder plot. On top of this, it's mentioned that Margo's deceased mother looked exactly like Alice Wakefield.
  • Tailchaser's Song: Howlsong looks like a larger and glossier-furred version of Tailchaser's friend Thinbone.
  • A Tale of Two Cities has this as a central plot point. Because of Sydney Carton's strong resemblance to Charles Darnay, a plot to discredit Darnay and have him convicted of espionage falls apart, and then when Darnay is slated to be executed for being a member of the Evremonde family, Sydney takes his place so Darnay can escape.
  • Edgar Rice Burroughs used this twice in different Tarzan novels:
    • In Tarzan and the Golden Lion, one of the Greystokes' servants makes a plan to steal from them. She hires a Spanish strongman named Esteban Miranda to play the part of Tarzan. Miranda looks enough like Tarzan to even fool the Waziri, but he can't climb like Tarzan.
    • In Tarzan and the Lion Man, cowardly actor Stanley Obroski is a dead ringer for Tarzan.
  • In the last two Time Scout books, Skeeter Jackson and Noah Armstrong look very similar. It's the coloring and the bone structure, and a complete coincidence.
    • And Skeeter still has to undergo plastic surgery to complete the resemblance. It was close, but not identical beforehand.
  • TSUKIMICHI -Moonlit Fantasy-: When high schooler Makoto is transported to another world, one of the hyumans he meets is an adventurer named Toa. With the exception of her hair color and larger chest, she bears a striking resemblance to his high school friend Hasegawa.
  • The Koriani entchantresses in Janny Wurts' War of Light and Shadow series find a random baby with green eyes, who looks as though he might grow up to look sort of like Arithon...and cast a spell on him as he grows up so that he looks exactly like Arithon. As Arithon is considered rather like the Antichrist...things do not work out well for that kid.
  • In Wise Blood, when a huckster turns Hazel Motes' Church Without Christ into a moneymaking scheme, Hazel cuts off ties with it. Said huckster then goes and finds a guy who looks a lot like Hazel—and drives a similar car—to continue serving as the church's prophet.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Jack from 30 Rock has a doppleganger who seems to differ only in being Mexican and apparently extremely gay. He plays the Generalissimo, the villain of a soap opera.
    • As does the Hulu alien...
  • On All in the Family, the local butcher solved his ongoing affections for Edith by finding a girlfriend who looked quite a bit like her (and was also played by Jean Stapleton). At this point, having both on-screen simultaneously was possible, as the show no longer had a studio audience — the laughter heard was from the One Day at a Time audience, who were shown completed AITF episodes. This allowed for a fun reaction when the audience finally got to see the two characters together in the last scene.
  • A strange case cropped up on All My Children. Tad got Easy Amnesia and ended up in California, where he met Nola Orsini, who instantly recognized him as her long-lost son Ted. Ted had disappeared as a child, but Nola saw Tad and knew this was what Ted would grow up to look like. After a few years, Tad returned to Pine Valley and got his memory back. The following year, it turned out Nola was right. The real Ted showed up, and he looked exactly like Tad.
  • When Diana Rigg left The Avengers (1960s), it was stated that Emma Peel's husband had finally turned up alive. He looked exactly like Steed, leaving viewers to wonder how she dealt with that emotionally all the time they worked together.
  • In Beakman's World, all of the Famous Dead Guys (and girls!) looked like Beakman, or Lester, or Josie/Liza/Phoebe. Except Beakmom. She looked like Edith Bunker.
  • Bones: The Victim of the Week looks exactly like Dr. Brennan, but only she notices. This is because Brennan is actually projecting herself as the victim because they have superficially similar bone structure and lack of friends. Once the case (and Dr. Brennan) sort themselves out, we finally see a photo of the victim when not from Brennan's POV and it doesn't look much like her.
  • The Brady Bunch: The fifth-season episode, "Two Petes in a Pod," saw Peter meet his exact double, Arthur Owens, in school. Wacky hijinx ensue, and be sure to watch for a scene when Arthur-as-Peter helps Jan with her homework ... and cozies up to her very closely (without Mike, Carol or Alice even so much as batting an eye; Jan doesn't even say anything).
  • One episode of The Brittas Empire has a dodgy East European acrobat appear in the centre who looks just like Gordon Brittas. Hilarity Ensues when he tries to seduce all the women.
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine:
    • Played with. Bill has a very similar body type to Charles Boyle, but they have very different faces and voices. Despite this, everyone besides the main characters seems unable to tell them apart.
    • The episode "Blue Flu" established that every precinct in Brooklyn has their own Scully and Hitchcock.
  • Castle: One episode featured a celebutante heiress (Odette) who ran into a stripper (Barbara) who looked incredibly similar to her. Odette then paid for Barbara's plastic surgery to make them identical, so that Barbara could serve her community service for her while she went out and continued partying. When Odette is killed in a train crash, Barbara takes advantage of the ruse by taking over Odette's life. Once she got some distance from the few people who had been actually close with Odette, rather than just fellow partiers, there was no one to see through the ruse. She's eventually killed by Odette's exboyfriend when he finally figures it out.
  • One episode of CHiPs has Bonnie go to a strip club with her friends. They see a stripper who looks a lot like Ponch who starts his act wearing a CHP uniform. Bonnie later admits she had to look closely to be sure it wasn't actually him.
  • In The Colbert Report, Stephen's Doppelganger takes over during one of his Better Know A District Segments.
  • Community:
    • Abed is coerced into approaching a girl he's attracted to because one of her old textbooks has a sketch of him in it — which turns out to be a sketch of her boyfriend, a caucasian Abed-lookalike.
    • On a season one ending credit gag, Troy and Abed are playing ridiculous messages over the PA system... only to be stopped by security guards who are identical older versions of themselves. Everybody involved is seriously weirded out.
  • In-universe example — Eric Szmanda from CSI and Jonathan Togo from CSI: Miami (picture). Szmanda is even in the backdoor pilot for the Miami spin-off as well. It would be.....interesting to say the least were they to ever meet.
  • Daredevil (2015): An unintentional one happened. In season 1, Angel Rosa (an NYPD cop who also does part-time work for TV shows filmed in New York City who need police extras) plays a dirty cop on Wilson Fisk's payroll, and is seen being arrested by the FBI in the season finale. Rosa reappears in season 3 playing a cop with a different name who responds to the "shots-fired" call when Dex interrupts Matt and Nadeem's attempt to break in to his place.
  • On Days of Our Lives, when Kristen Blake DiMera miscarried John Black's baby, she feared John would leave her for his true love Marlena Evans. So Kristen's father, Supervillain Stefano DiMera, located an Identical Stranger, Susan Banks, whom he seduced and impregnated by dressing up as her idol, Elvis Presley. Susan then impersonated Kristen for doctor's appointments, using a mouthpiece to hide her terrible buck teeth. Later, after the ruse was uncovered, Kristen tried to kill Marlena and then used a mouthpiece to impersonate Susan in hopes of taking over the latter's life and escaping prosecution. Meanwhile, Susan turned out to be one of a set of quadruplets, and her siblings Sister Mary Moira Banks, Thomas Banks, and Penelope Kent all arrived in Salem. Actress Eileen Davidson played all five roles, and received a Daytime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in 1998 for her efforts.
  • The Devil Judge: Ga-on looks exactly like Kang Isaac, Yo-han's dead half-brother.
  • In Diagnosis: Murder:
  • Doctor Who:
    • In "The Massacre", the First Doctor was a dead ringer for the Abbot of Amboise. This led to much confusion for his companion Steven Taylor, who encountered the Abbott and believed him to be the Doctor.
    • In "The Enemy of the World", the Second Doctor looked almost identical to Villain with Good Publicity Ramón Salamander; the only difference was Salamander's slightly darker skin tone. At one point, the Doctor is seen applying Brown Face onscreen in order to impersonate Salamander.
    • In the Fifth Doctor story "Black Orchid", Nyssa was a dead ringer for Ann Talbot.
    • In "The Androids of Tara", Romana looked identical to Princess Strella. To make things more complicated, both had android duplicates of them created over the course of the story. This meant that Mary Tamm ended up playing four roles: Romana, Strella and android versions of each.
      • And these are all cases of a Human Alien being a dead ringer for a human.
    • Also subverted. In another Fifth Doctor story, "Arc of Infinity", the Doctor was shot by a fellow Time Lord, Commander Maxil. The Doctor would then go on to resemble the aforementioned Commander, as both were played by Colin Baker. Baker wanted to play both Maxil and The Doctor in a scene to lampshade it, but no dice.
    • "The Fires of Pompeii" resulted in a major one. Peter Capaldi was in the episode, playing a merchant saved from the eruption by the Tenth Doctor; he would then go on to play the Twelfth Doctor himself. A later episode features a delayed Identical Stranger plot as the Doctor figures out why he resembles a guy he saved from Pompeii.
    • In the course of the seventh series of the new series, the Doctor encounters Clara Oswald three times in three completely different times and places, and witnesses her death twice. This spurs him into trying to figure out how he can keep encountering the same person. Ultimately, however, this is a subversion, as the other Claras are all "echoes" of the original scattered across space-and-time.
  • Elementary: One episode featured a website that used facial recognition technology to connect people with their doppelgangers. The Victim of the Week used the website to find someone that could impersonate him to volunteer his DNA in order to cover up his involvement in an old crime. This got the doppelganger killed right before the killer realized his mistake and killed his real target.
    • The main clue is provided by the "more scrupulous twin", another doppelganger who was asked to do a DNA test in the victim's stead (but refused, even though he believed it to be a paternity test).
  • On Frasier:
    • In one episode, Daphne goes out with essentially a clone of Niles. Daphne doesn't notice, and neither does Niles at first, he even calls the clone a pretentious fop. When the clone orders coffee the same way Niles likes it, the realization hits him like a ton of bricks. Niles later catches the clone sneaking around with Niles's new girlfriend. THEN he's pissed.
      Niles: The betrayal! No one treats Daphne that way!
      Frasier: Niles, whatever you do, do not engage him in a physical fight. The whole thing would just look too weird!
    • In another episode, Frasier goes out with a woman who very strongly resembles his late mother, in both the way she looks and the way she acts. He is the only one who doesn't notice: when he finally does, he breaks it off because it's all just too damn awkward.
    • During their separation, Niles finds a dog who is exactly like Maris. It's obvious to everyone else, but Niles needs Frasier to point it out to him.
  • Friends:
    • "The One With Russ": Before going out with Ross, Rachel goes out for one episode with the aforementioned Russ, who looks, acts, and talks just like Ross. When Ross and Julie break up in the same episode, Julie runs into Russ and the two immediately click, even though Julie had just gotten over the identical looking Ross. Amazingly, the only other character not to notice the similarity is Ross. Russ was actually portrayed by David Schwimmer himself.
    • It also gets parodied twice, both times involving Joey. One episode has him flip out over meeting a guy whose hands look exactly like his own, while another has him recruit an actor to try and play his identical twin brother so they can join a group study that pays $1,000, only to fail to realize the actor doesn't look a thing like him until the very last minute.
  • One episode of Get Smart involved the discovery that KAOS had launched a campaign to find the doppleganger of everyone in CONTROL. Get Smart was the king of doppelganger shows — there were at least three doubles of Max, and 99 and the Chief had at least one apiece.
  • Gilligan's Island:
    • "Gilligan vs. Gilligan" sees the arrival of a Russian spy who looks identical to Gilligan, thanks to plastic surgery.
    • As did the identical-to-Ginger but Hollywood Homely woman who ended up on the island, got a makeover, and planned to steal Ginger's identity when returning alone to the 'States.
    • And we also see the impostor who was living as Thurston Howell III before falling off of a yacht and washing up on the Isle.
  • ''The Gnomes of Dulwich: The episode "Two Big's in One Garden" saw the arrival of a new gnome that was an exact replica of Big, both gnomes coming from the Royal Hertfordshire Stone Gnome Company.
  • Featured in, believe it or not, Green Acres, when a criminal who looks exactly like Oliver Douglas comes to town.
  • In How I Met Your Mother, it's revealed that the gang has a habit of running into doppelgangers of themselves and are still on the lookout for the last ones. They're identified as Lesbian Robin, Mustache Marshall, Stripper Lily, and Mexican Wrestler Ted. Lily eventually decides that as soon as they see a Barney doppelganger, she'll see that as a sign it's time to have children. It Makes Sense in Context. Lily thought she found Barney's doppelganger in a random hot dog vendor, but he didn’t actually look like Barney at all, Lily just saw what she wanted to see. When they eventually find Barney's doppelganger, he turns out to be Lily's fertility doctor.
  • The Incredible Hulk (1977): It had one episode in which David Banner ran into someone who looked almost like him with the exception that his doppelganger was and looked a little bit older. The doppelganger, unfortunately, was a crook. Both parts were played by Bill Bixby.
  • JAG: Sarah "Mac" MacKenzie, Harm's new partner, is trying to figure out why Harm is being so awkward around her.
    Harm: I keep forgetting I don't know you.
    Mac: Deja vu again?
    Harm: Only whenever I see your face. Or hear you talk. I wouldn't know about your smile, I haven't seen one yet.
    Mac: There's not much to smile about.
    Harm: I guess not.
    Mac: Sounds like I have a twin out there. {cue Flash Back of a woman, identical to Mac, being placed in a bodybag}
    • Mac resembling a murdered acquaintance of Harm's was the result of Catherine Bell having previously played the murder victim in "Skeleton Crew", a Lost Episode from the first season before the show hopped networks and was retooled.
    • This ends up as a (dead-serious) Brick Joke two and a half seasons later in "Death Watch", when Mac confronts her doppelganger's killer, who is startled by what looks like the murdered woman's ghost, causing them to stumble backwards off of the pier to their death.
  • Denzi Blue, Battle Kenya and Space Sheriff Gavan (all played by Kenji Ohba) are treated as this when they are brought together in Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger vs. Space Sheriff Gavan: The Movie. Except here, it turns out that the three have been friends for a long time.
  • Kamen Rider Gaim: In the Gaim Gaiden: Kamen Rider Baron movie, Kaito Kumon turns out to be identical to Shapool, the visiting prince of a foreign country.
  • Mimpi Metropolitan: The day before her birthday, Mami Bibir meets Richard, who looks identical to his late husband David despite explicitly not being related or coming from the same country. Since this is not long after she reminisced about David, this makes Mami Bibir miss him even more.
  • In the Monk episode "Mr. Monk is Someone Else", Monk is recruited by the FBI to impersonate a deceased hitman who looked exactly like him, so they can find out who the Los Angeles mafia were recruiting the real man to kill.
  • There is an episode of The Monkees in which Micky gets in a bit of trouble due to looking absolutely identical to a dangerous gangster wanted by the police.
  • In the Murdoch Mysteries episode "Mrs Crabtree's Neighbourhood", a contract killer happened to meet a man who looked just like him, and hired him to be obviously present near his home when he was on a job. Unfortunately for him, his double and his wife fell in love and decided to Murder The Hypoteneuse.
  • The Nanny loves this. In one episode, Maxwell dates a woman who looks and acts just like Fran. Neither Fran nor Maxwell ever realize the similarity. Then on another occasion, C.C. dates a man who looks and acts just like Niles, which makes Niles hopelessly jealous.
  • NCIS. In "Doppelganger" Team Gibbs is dumbfounded to find a Metro PD squad whose members are identical in personality to their own. A Perp Sweating leader who Dope Slaps and drinks Starbucks coffee, a probie geek who fetches said coffee, a Handsome Lech Italian-American whose attempts to flirt with Kate are crushed with sarcasm and a Deadpan Snarker female cop who does the same thing to DiNozzo.
  • Neighbours
    • Gabrielle Walker, a guest character was the spitting image of Harold Bishop's daughter Kerry (both played by Linda Hartley-Clark), who had been killed fifteen years earlier. Several other characters who had known Kerry were shocked by the resemblance.
    • Andrea Somers, a con artist who showed up in Ramsay Street attempting to impersonate the missing presumed drowned Dione Bliss (both played by Madeleine West). Two years after she was introduced, they were retconned to be twin sisters Separated at Birth the whole time.
  • Robin Hood encounters two unrelated doppelgangers in different episodes of ''The New Adventures of Robin Hood". In "Outlaw Express", he encounters his Criminal Doppelgänger Jacobi who has just broken out of prison. In "Heroes", the Sheriff recruits a lookalike Con Man named Morty Butterman as part of a scheme to destroy Robin's reputation.
  • Many of the shows on Nickelodeon share the same universe, and several of the actors star in more than just one of these shows.
  • An Only Fools and Horses special featured an American Mafia boss who looked exactly like Del.
  • Orphan Black starts with Sarah assuming she has found one of these with Beth, stealing her belongings and impersonating her. By the end of the first episode, it's quickly turned into Clone Angst, and it only gets worse from there.
  • And again on Perfect Strangers. Following their breakup, Balki and Mary Ann date carbon copies of their exes. True to form, they each notice the similarities in each others new partners, but are oblivious to their own, although Balki realizes it after slipping up and accidentally calling the woman "Mary Ann".
  • There's an episode of The Phil Silvers Show where Bilko turns out to have a double. They never meet until the final scene but they keep getting mistaken for each other and much Hilarity Ensues.
    • Another episode involved Bilko promising a Bing Crosby concert to the troops. Unfortunately Bing was late to arrive so Bilko tried to placate the troops by passing off as Bing a soldier who happened to be a lookalike. The double couldn't sing, however, with his only talent being that he can recite Longfellow's poem "The Wreck of the Hesperus". Bing saved the day by arriving at the end of the episode—and proceeded to entertain the troops by reciting "The Wreck of the Hesperus".
  • In Power Rangers Lost Galaxy, one episode features an actress named Carolyn who is identical to Kendrix Morgan, the Pink Ranger. Kendrix ends up swapping places with the actress to give her a break. Over the course of the episode, the actress learns to not be so bitchy, and Kendrix for her part gains a bit of confidence from filling in for the actress at her job. Towards the end, the actress takes advantage of the resemblance to confuse the Monster of the Week. The same thing happened in its Super Sentai counterpart, Seijuu Sentai Gingaman, with GingaPink, Saya.
  • In Primeval the character of Claudia Brown has a bridge dropped on her by the Timey-Wimey Ball and the identical looking, but very different, character of Jenny Lewis replaces her. A rare case where it isn't undone by the Reset Button by the end of the episode and Claudia is for all intents and purposes Killed Off for Real.
    • However, Jenny, while at first a much different person, slowly starts to become more and more like Claudia. She ditches fancy dresses and starts dressing more businesslike and starts developing feelings for Nick, just like Claudia. In the episode where Jenny decides to leave for good, she finds a picture that Nick has always kept in his pocket and doesn't recognize posing for it. She realizes that Nick was telling the truth about the altered timeline.
  • The Prisoner (1967) episode "The Schizoid Man" screws with Number Six's sense of identity by secretly conditioning him to alter his reactions, then introducing an Identical Stranger who's been trained to react the way Six is supposed to.
  • The Rookie (2018): "Day In The Hole" sees Tim run into a criminal who looks just like him, to the point that his colleagues half-jokingly wonder whether they the pair are long lost twins (they aren't). He then uses this to go undercover and impersonate the guy, to arrest his drug supplier. The guy's girlfriend is Lucy's doppleganger too. Naturally, both are played by the same two actors.
    • When Tim’s doppelganger is killed it leads the team to a collection of black market art, which included a painting of a Haitian revolutionary that looked exactly like Sgt. Grey (Grey said he wasn't aware of any Haitian ancestry but couldn't rule out that it was a case of Identical Grandson).
  • Scholar Who Walks the Night: Hye Ryung looks exactly like Myung Hee.
  • Scrubs:
    • After Laverne dies, Nurse Shirley takes her job. She looks exactly the same as Laverne, but only JD notices this. (The names are a Shout-Out to Laverne & Shirley.)
    • Downplayed in one episode where another doctor looks like JD, though not exactly like him, and other people think he's JD.
      JD: He looks nothing like me! ...What are you, Egyptian?
    • One minor side character is known as Snoop Dogg intern (later resident, then attending) because of his strong resemblance to Snoop Dogg.
  • This trope is the pilot episode of Sister, Sister. Tia and Tamera meet each other in the mall. Hilarity Ensues. They end up being twin sisters Separated at Birth and Tia and her mom go to live with Tamara and her dad for the series.
  • Features heavily in the Smallville episode “Zero” (all other depicted doppelgangers in the series are explicitly clones or shapeshifters). Two years before he came to Smallville, Lex Luthor was involved in the death of Jude Royce, which led to Jude’s girlfriend Amanda being committed to an institution and killing herself. By sheer chance, Amanda’s brother Roy discovered a fry cook who just happened to look exactly like Jude, and enlisted him in a complex scheme of revenge against Lex for his role in Jude’s death.
  • Downplayed in Sons of Anarchy where new pledge Rat Boy looks very similar to the unique-looking Tig. They're not identical but are able to easily pass themselves off as father and son.
  • In a gag for Conan-era The Tonight Show, the back-seat rows (the ones you never see from the cameras) are decided to not get any love — so they have huge bodybuilders march out and flex for the back row. One looked exactly like one of the cast members. Down to the glasses.
  • Janet from Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps and Michelle from Grownups in the Two Pints... Comic Relief special.
  • Ultraseven: Miner and mountain climber Jiro Satsuma to Dan Moroboshi. In fact, Dan is actually just Ultraseven in the form of Jiro Satsuma, having taken his appearance to honor the human's selflessness.
  • Used in an episode of Up Pompeii where the plot revolved around a visit from Caesar who looked identical to Frankie Howerd's roman slave Lurcio. As with everything in this show, the fact that Frankie Howerd was playing two separate characters was heavily lampshaded, with constant references by Howerd to the audience about his versatility in playing two characters and many occasions where Howerd would come in the wrong costume and have to change rapidly.
  • In Mexican telenovela La Ursupadora, villainess Paola is thrilled to meet Identical Stranger Paolina at a beach resort, and quickly forces her to switch places. They are later revealed to have been twins separated at birth.
  • On an episode of V.I.P., a terrorist organization spent months searching for a Valerie Irons lookalike so that they could frame the real one for their rather far-reaching crime against humanity. (Not only did they find one, they found one who was surprisingly willing to join up with them and do it; clearly the writers were depending on serious Suspension of Disbelief by viewers.)
  • Walker, Texas Ranger has the titular villain in Season 6's "Iceman", Maxwell Kronert, who bears a striking resemblance to Charlie Brooks (which is all the more simple, as Terry Kiser plays both Brooks and Kronert at the same time). In order to get out of community service following Season 5, Brooks agrees to impersonate him in Walker and Trivette's assignment to capture mob boss George Vickers while the real Iceman is recovering in the hospital following an explosive high-speed chase.
  • Xena: Warrior Princess had Meg (a harlot), Diana (a princess) and Leah (a priestess) who all happened to look like Xena. In addition to all of them having being confused for Xena at some point, there were also stories in which they were being confused for each other before Xena arrived on the scene!
  • The X-Files:
    • Done as one of the many He Is Not My Boyfriend gags in "The Rain King". Scully and Mulder arrive at a TV station and are at first assumed to be the married couple about to appear on the program. When the real couple arrive they look like country hick versions of the two FBI agents.
    • The Cold Open of Season 7's "Fight Club" has a pair of FBI agents investigating the mysterious events, and it takes a couple minutes of dialogue before the camera shows their faces and reveals that they are two strangers who just happen to look and sound a lot like Mulder and Scully. The episode also has this trope as its central plot, as the actual Mulder and Scully take over the case and discover it revolves around a pair of Identical Strangers who cause destruction and mayhem whenever they're both in the same place at the same time.

  • My Beloved Mother have Sinbell, an orphan Raised by Robots, trying to find his "real" mother after rejecting his robotic parent, with only an old photograph as clue. He eventually managed to find a dead ringer to his mother, a prostitute named Asara living in the big city, and tries convincing her that he's her kid much to Asara's chagrin and insistence that she isn't.

  • "Once I was the King of Spain" by Moxy Früvous is about a king who switches places with a peasant who is identical.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • "The Clones" Pat Kelly and Mike Kelly were not real clones, obviously, since they first met in the 1960s where human cloning would have made them far more money than wrestling ever could. They were not even related, they just noticed they looked remarkably aliked and decided to become Tag Team Twins.

  • In Avenue Q, Nicky searches for a boyfriend for his friend Rod (who secretly has a crush on him), and finds Ricky, who is almost identical to Nicky, right down to having the exact same voice, except that he's gay. Rod is overjoyed.
  • Most plays (and films) based off the "Courrier de Lyon" case take this so far as to have the same actor playing Lesurques and Dubosq. In reality, Lesurques and Dubosq did at least look similar enough that the former was mistaken for the latter by most witnesses, leading to his execution.
  • In A Flea In Her Ear, faithful husband Victor and drunken porter Poche are absolutely identical.
  • Marie Antoinette (Musical): Marie and Margrid's resemblance is often remarked on by other characters. Justified by The Reveal that they're half-sisters.
  • Martin and Arnaud from Martin Guerre must be identical strangers. Granted, seven years have passed between Martin leaving Artigat and Arnaud returning, but they must look A LOT alike for there to be acutal doubt as to who is who.
  • The Roman author Plautus' Menaechmi, circa 200 BC, has two identically-named people of identical appearance from different cities, thus making it Older Than Feudalism. William Shakespeare's adaptation of this The Comedy of Errors did it out the wazoo, with two sets of identically named identical twins from different cities in the same master/servant relationship. In either case, since no one knows of the other's existence when they first arrive in the same city, Hilarity Ensues.
  • Played with in Miss Saigon towards the end of its Broadway run, when an Asian actress (instead of the usual white one) was cast as Ellen, the wife of the title character's lover Chris. Suddenly, instead of moving on with his life, as he insisted that he had, it now appeared that Chris only married Ellen because she reminded him of Kim.

    Video Games 
  • In Alice in the Country of Hearts, Blood Dupree has the same face as Alice's ex-boyfriend who broke her heart. This causes her to be initially cold to him, though she eventually starts to see that he's not the same guy. Subverted when it turns out that Nightmare gave her Fake Memories to make her think Blood looked like her ex.
  • In Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Gullivarrr looks almost exactly like Gulliver, with the sole difference being that Gullivarrr is a Pirate while Gulliver is a sailor. The game's interface even refers to him as "Gulliver" when you first encounter him in your island before he propertly introduces himself. Your villagers also notice the resemblance he has to Gulliver and some of them even wonder if he is impersonating him. In a case of Gameplay and Story Integration Gulliver and Gullivarrr can both show up as visitors in your island on the same week, but never on consecutive days.
  • ANNO: Mutationem: In the Mysterious Console DLC, Noni, one of the major characters, bears a resemblance to Ann Flores, the protagonist. The few differences being that Noni is a teen with Youthful Freckles and light blue hair.
  • Uriel from Asdivine Hearts looks like a female version of the home kingdom's Prince Lawrence, who disappeared without a trace a year before the events of the game. The resemblance is so uncanny that guards at the castle arrest the party for kidnapping the prince when they see Uriel.
  • Naoto Kurogane of BlazBlue: Central Fiction (originally from the light novel series BlazBlue: The Bloodedge Experience) is notable for his visible similarities to the protagonist Ragna, particularly when his hair turns white and his eyes turn red while using his Bloodedge. This gets him into trouble more than once throughout the CF story, as most of the cast wants to fight Ragna for various different reasons. A rather chilling example is with Nu-13, who (expecting Ragna to come to her) is at first her usual crazy self... and then ramps that crazy Up To Eleven when she realises the (inadvertent) deception. This is also spells trouble for Ragna himself; as Naoto is implied to be an Alternate Universe equivalent to/incarnation of Ragna, Naoto's mere presence in the BlazBlue world threatens to overwrite Ragna's existence, something that makes Rachel uncharacterically livid.
  • In Cafe Enchante, it's justified with Noah whose physical appearance reminds Kotone of Misyr. Noah had long lost his original body and decided to take on Misyr's appearance and mannerisms because Noah thought Kotone would like him better if he resembled Misyr.
  • Devil May Cry: In the first game, Dante is shocked when he meets Trish, who has the same face as his deceased mother Eva, causing him to agree to help her. Mundus created Trish and deliberately designed her to resemble Eva to lure Dante into his trap, though Trish eventually comes to like Dante and helps him for real.
  • Extra Case: My Girlfriend's Secrets: One of the clues Marty can find is a photo of one of Sally's previous boyfriends, John, who looks exactly like Marty but with darker hair and eyes. This similarity is noted in-universe, which is why Sally's Split Personality, Shadow, wants to cut Marty's head off in order to stitch together a new body for John.
  • Fatal Frame:
    • In the first game, Mafuyu Hinasaki looks nearly identical to the man Kirie fell in love with before the ceremony. During a flashback that Miku observes of Kirie's memories, she even mistakes the guy for Mafuyu for a second.
      Miku: Kirie and... Mafuyu? No, it's not him. Maybe it's the man she loved when she was alive.
    • In the third game, Kei Amakura resembles a couple people:
      • He bares a strong resemblance to Akito, a visitor that Kyouka (posthumously known as "Brushing Woman") fell in love with. Her spirit isn't happy to see the "return" of her "lover" after all this time, though.
        Kyouka/Brushing Woman: You said you'd come back!
      • Kei resembles the Big Bad's lover. This is explained as said lover being the son of Kyouka and her lover. This actually saves his life in a New Game Plus, as long as you retrieve a certain item, as with that the Big Bad will merely put him into a deep coma instead of killing him.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy VI has Celes being nearly identical in appearance to Maria, the famous opera singer, and ends up having to substitute for her as part of a Zany Scheme to get the party onboard Setzer's airship. Some theorize that, as Celes is a Designer Baby, she may well either be a clone or close genetic relative of Maria (she certainly seems to share Maria's talent for opera, after all, being able to perform well enough to fool the obsessed fan Setzer despite never having sung before in her life). This has not been officially endorsed by the source material. We never actually see Maria in the game, so we have to take the other characters' word for it about their resemblance.
    • Final Fantasy X makes Tidus an Identical Stranger to two unrelated characters. In FFX, he's a coincidental doppelganger of Wakka's dead brother and Lulu's lover Chappu, opening the door for Wakka's Big Brother Instinct and Lulu snark. In X-2, we learn that Tidus was actually a dream simulation loosely based on some real person named Shuyin. Wait, so why did he look like Chappu?
    • Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII: Lumina is Serah Farron with a different outfit and voice. She is the physical manifestation of Lightning's suppressed vulnerabilities, though she also acts as the container of Serah's soul, which is why she looks like her.
  • Fire Emblem:
    • In the past, Samuel of Fire Emblem: Mystery of the Emblem was so often mistaken for Navarre that he began posing as him. He... doesn't have the personality to back it up, though, and freaks out when either Ogma or Caeda speaks to him.
    • While Asugi, Rhajat, and Caeldori from Fire Emblem Fates are all nearly identical (in both looks and personality) to Gaius, Tharja, and Cordelia, this trope can get invoked with Caeldori. If she is brought into the Before Awakening DLC and speaks to Chrom, he will mistake her for Cordelia before realizing she's someone else, and Caeldori can even have a red-haired mother to make the resemblance even stronger. (Although Caeldori can alternately fall into Identical Grandson instead; it's... complicated.)
  • Kiyama Tatsuya from Inazuma Eleven looks almost exactly like Hiroto, the deceased son of Kira Seijirou, and for that reason, he acts as a Replacement Goldfish for him and even borrows his name.
  • You take this role in Infinite Undiscovery as Capell, who is mistaken for the hero of the land, Sigmund. It forms a major part of the plot.
  • Kingdom Hearts has a lot of this going around.
    • Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories has Naminé, who is basically Kairi with long blonde hair. It's because she is actually her Nobody (albeit the unique circumstances of her birth caused her to have slight physical differences from her Somebody, unlike most Nobodies). It takes Sora a long time to get this because she has been literally messing with his memories.
    • Kingdom Hearts II introduces us to Roxas, who is Sora with a different haircut and blonde hair. Many characters remark that he looks like Sora as well. Eventually it's revealed that, like Naminé, Roxas is Sora's Nobody.
    • Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days gives us another Kairi lookalike: the mysterious fourteenth member of Organization XIII, Xion. This time, she is Kairi with short black hair. Unlike Naminé, Xion also shares Kairi's voice actress (at least in Japanese; English is a bit inconsistent about this). The Reveal is that Xion is a Replica of Sora, designed to sap away Roxas's power. The more power she syphons, the more she resembles Kairi. At her full power, Xion's appearance completely changes to that of a 14-year old Sora.
    • Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep introduces Ventus, who is physically identical to Roxas. Ventus has been sleeping in Sora's heart for the past ten years, so the two of them do have some of a connection. There's also Vanitas, who's Sora with a dye job and a much cooler outfit. Vanitas is Ven's Enemy Without, and Ven only survived their separation by linking with Sora's heart, connecting the three of them. Vanitas, who was previously The Faceless, took on Sora's appearance as a result.
    • Kingdom Hearts 3D [Dream Drop Distance] shows us a full view of what Master Xehanort looked like in his youth, and he's remarkably similar to how Terra, introduced in Birth by Sleep, looks, especially once Terra gets Hades Shaded after being possessed by Xehanort. The only real difference is that Terra is more visibly muscular than Young Xehanort.
    • Kingdom Hearts III gives us a rather weird, meta-example in the character Yozora. He is the hero of the fictional Final Fantasy-esque action-RPG Verum Rex, which itself is almost a beat-by-beat Affectionate Parody of Final Fantasy XV. Appearance-wise, he looks almost exactly like Riku, save for his heterochromia and slightly darker shade of hair. Resident cloudcuckoolander Rex however is utterly convinced that Sora is an official action-figure of Yozora, despite looking nothing like him and only vaguely having similar clothes. So of course, this being Kingdom Hearts, Yozora turns out to be a real person after all and does indeed bear some meaningful connection to Sora, Riku and the Master of Masters.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • In the opening dialogue of Link's Awakening, Marin is at first mistaken for Princess Zelda. This gets a Call-Forward in the Oracle games that take place immediately before, where Zelda's in-game model is identical to Marin's except for the addition of a crown.
    • Majora's Mask did this to save on production time, with nearly every Hyrulean character from Ocarina of Time having a doppelganger in Termina. Some were altered slightly, and some new characters without a (known) Hyrule counterpart also showed up. While the characters never run into each other, Link experiences the whole "have we met before" situation. Including the various transformation masks despite the very obvious differences between Link's mask-based forms and the people who form the base of those forms (Different hair styles, green clothes, lack of scars or tattoos), people still mistake Goron and Zora Link for Darmani and Mikau. Oddly, despite being based on the Deku Butler's son, no one mistakes Deku Link for him, though the Butler remarks that Deku Link reminds him of his son.
    • Several (if not most) of the various Links tend to fall under this as well. For example, Link from The Wind Waker is unrelated to the same-named individuals who share his Heroic Spirit — yet he somehow manages to be a dead ringer for Minish Cap Link, both Four Swords Links, and Spirit Tracks Link. The last one bears special mention for having several Identical Grandchildren to Wind Waker characters, but the devs stating the two Links are not related.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes lacks the Me's a Crowd justification for co-op multiplayer the Four Swords games have, and is simply handwaved by there being a prophecy of three heroes having hair parted to the side, big sideburns and pointy ears (ie: people that look like Link), so the kingdom of Hytopia simply sends a call out for anyone who matches that description to come to their aid. Hytopia also has many characters who look exactly like people who showed up in A Link Between Worlds, the immediately preceding game, but there's no in-universe explanation for this.
  • This leads to most of the plot in Leisure Suit Larry 2: Looking for Love (in Several Wrong Places) when Larry mistakenly obtaining a microfiche when someone identical to him was suppose to and spending most of the game avoiding the KGB.
  • Love Nikki - Dress Up Queen has the titular Nikki and her fellow model Bai Jinjin, with Jinjin looking exactly like Nikki save for their hairstyles and heights (Nikki is a little taller).
  • In the Mata Nui Online Game, the developers accidentally mixed up the masks of several characters, thereby making Hafu look like Taipu and vice versa. In MNOG II, they were given the correct masks finally, but this leads to the player character confusing them, which makes Taipu quite mad. The developers were basically poking fun at their own goof-up.
  • Fate Series:
    • A possible example: Lu Bu's Master in Fate/EXTRA, Rani VIII, could pass for an opposite-sex clone of his compatriot Chen Gong as seen in Fate/Grand Order. The "possible" is because Rani is a Homunculus, leaving it ambiguous whether she was deliberately made in the image of Gong or if their similarity is indeed a coincidence.
    • Lu Bu's dialogue in Fate/Extella: The Umbral Star compares Rani to his wife Diao, which raises the possibility that Diao and Chen Gong were a more conventional example.
    • Fate/Samurai Remnant:
      • According to Samson's flashback, Takao Dayu looks identical to his former lover Delilah, which is why he develops a soft spot for her.
      • Ototachibana-hime possesses Ogasawara Kaya's body. According to a flashback, she looked identical to Kaya when she was alive.
  • In NEO: The World Ends with You, Sho Minamimoto, a returning character from the first game, bears a striking resemblance from Lord Tomonami, a character from the in-universe game Elegant Strategy, resulting in Nagi having a crush on him.
  • Several of these crop up in Throné's story in Octopath Traveler II. The two pairs she calls attention to are Pirro and an unnamed boy in Oresrush, and an elderly guard from Wellgrove and the gondola guide in Lostseed. It turns out there's a very good reason plot-wise for this, since they're all Claude's children. The guard also comments on this if you bring him to the gondola guide in Throné's post-story sidequest.
  • In Persona 4, according to Hisano, the protagonist looks a lot like her deceased husband when he was younger (though she later teases the protagonist by claiming her husband was more handsome). It gave Hisano a pause when she first met the protagonist in the hospital.
  • Star Ocean:
  • In Suikoden V, the Prince encounters a bandit named Roy who looks almost exactly like him, and increases the resemblance even further by wearing a wig. Roy ends up getting forced to join the Prince's army and serves as a decoy.
  • Tales Series:
    • Happens in Tales of the Abyss with Luke and Asch. Later subverted when it's revealed that Luke is actually a replica of Asch, and Asch is the "true" Luke.
    • Tales of Innocence: A sub-event that takes place as soon as the party returns to Regnum for Hermana has a young boy mistake Kongwai for his brother. The boy's mother notes the resemblance as well, but is aware that her son was killed in the Western Battlefield. While Kongwai initially seems annoyed at the crying child, he reveals his kinder side and agrees to play catchball to cheer him up.
  • WarioWare: Smooth Moves: Spoofed. Not only is Jimmy P. an Identical Stranger for Jimmy T., they have nearly the same storyline in their stages. Jimmy P. has a tan, though, causing an anonymous flyer on the town message board to say that Jimmy T. "Must have gotten some sun" and "Looks like a different person!"
  • In Xenoblade Chronicles 1, Shulk looks and sounds identical to the true form of Zanza, and by extension Zanza's original identity Klaus. Despite this, Shulk becoming Zanza's vessel seems to be coincidence: a young Shulk had died with his family on Valak Mountain but was resurrected due to being the closest to the Monado.
  • Downplayed in Your Turn to Die: while both Sou Hiyori and Shin Tsukimi look similar enough for the latter to impersonate the former, side-by-side they look recognisably different from one another.

    Web Animation 
  • The season two premiere of Camp Camp gave us Daniel, a near-identical clone of head counselor David, much to Gwen's horror. However, Daniel's cheerful personality is an act; scratch the surface and you'll find an Ax-Crazy cult leader who is more than happy to brainwash and kill kids.
  • In Deadly Space Action!, Gregarion the Sea Barbarian is either this or an Identical Grandfather to Lemarion the Space Barbarian, though they never meet.
  • Etra chan saw it!:
    • In this story, Akane accuses Tsutsuji of being a pornstar, using an alleged image of her to prove it. Turns out the pornstar wasn't actually Tsutsuji; as the real Tsutsuji was a chubby high school student by the time the actual actress did her productions.
    • In this story, due to Akamatsu's wife's affair with another man, he is not biologically related to his son, who is also the kid version of himself.
    • Azami goes on a business trip to a village in a foreign country, then she gets approached and worshipped by several men because she resembles the goddess who saved the village from destruction. When she's about to leave the village, the men attempt to prevent her from leaving before the village chief Tokusa stops them from harming her.
    • In this story, Kuroki is mistaken by Yuzuriha for her ex-boyfriend because they look alike, she is also suspicious of his name because she thinks he faked his name. Fortunately, Yuzuriha completely acknowledges that Kuroki wasn't her boyfriend. However, right after Kuroki left, the actual ex-boyfriend comes into Yuzuriha's lodge, only to be killed by her immediately, because he was treating her like crap when they were still dating.
    • Akamatsu gets mistaken by Yuzuriha for her boyfriend, making her think that her boyfriend was a married man with children who is willing to cheat on his wife with her. Fortunately, the real boyfriend named Todomatsu shows up to clear up the misunderstanding. Both Akamatsu and Todomatsu almost look identical to each other; however, the latter has an Idiot Hair and a darker hair color.
  • As he originated in an Imagine Spot where Strong Bad imagined himself as not "stylish, buff, and handsome" (well, sort of, considering the heavy Recursive Reality going on in that series), Senor Cardgage of Homestar Runner looks basically like Strong Bad if he were middle-aged, dumpy, and hairy. This is rarely acknowledged and never explained; the two have no connection besides Strong Bad inexplicably thinking Cardgage is cool. It's especially obvious because Strong Bad's actual family looks nothing at all like him — though this really just adds to how surreal Cardgage tends to be.
  • Manga Room: Akiho Kyomoto looks exactly like Sakura Hanomoto, who was Ren Matsushita's childhood friend and girlfriend until she suddenly passed away.
  • Piece Of Cake: The credits show Val and Mara being purchased by a couple who look exactly like them, right down to one of them missing an arm.

    Web Comics 
  • Akuma TH has the "Superhero" Mathman, who looks like the title character in a cape and a not particularly concealing mask. Everybody who sees Mathman assumes that he's actually Akuma, and neither of them is particularly convincing when denying it. However, the third annual World Spriter's Tournament showed that they were, in fact, separate people.
  • Brawl in the Family has Kingsonnn Dededoo, who looks exactly like King Dedede with a moustache. He's here to clean your clock.
  • El Goonish Shive:
    • Diane is physically identical to Susan. The two are distinguishable only by hair colornote  and fashion sense (and, since Susan got a magic-powered growth spurt, height). Despite this it appears that they have never met. Considering the amount of lampshade hanging around this one, as well as the fact that we know of at least one way for this to be perfectly possible (not counting identical twins separated at birth), this is probably going to become important later. Indeed, it turns out to be a case of Identical great-great-great-grand-niece, or something like that.
    • In the "Death Sentence" arc, Raven casts a disguise spell on Grace so he can pass her off as his niece. The disguise looks just like Susan. He doesn't know it at the time, but Raven actually is Diane's father and Susan's ancestor.
      Grace: Are you sure you don't have any children?
      Raven: Positive. Why?
      Grace: No reason.
    • After Diane becomes interested in Elliot, she starts watching the online review show he's doing with Susan. She doesn't notice the similarity, and just refers to Susan as "lanky bitch."
      Rhoda: Listen to her voice! She sounds just like you!
      Diane: Pfft. I don't sound like that.
    • The artist has admitted that the resemblance originated in his limited artistic ability in the early stages of the comic, and by the time it was pointed out to him, both characters were too well established to change them.
  • Nedroid: Over the course of the ongoing Harrison Stories arc Harrison comes across two creatures underground who look exactly like his friends Beartato and Reginald only to find out that they're Buttfranklin Buttwhistle and...His friend Reginald who's a little insulted Harrison didn't recognize him
  • Nintendo Acres has Link from Zelda and Lionk, Link's part-time door-opening stunt double and full-time employee of all the town's restaurants.
  • Off-White: A wolf pelt that looks like Iki except with orange eyes instead of blue.
  • The Prince and the Princess: Emilia immediately notices Edmund looks very much like her when they meet, leading to a Twin Switch though they aren't related.
  • Questionable Content has recurring cast member Penelope, an employee at Coffee of Doom, and minor character Pizza Girl, a pizza delivery worker who dresses as a superhero. They look almost identical except for Penelope's glasses (And apparently bust size, Penelope angrily states Pizza girl must stuff her costume). Faye insists that they are the same person but Penelope denies it. She also claims that Pizza Girl once delivered to her house, causing them both to scream.
  • Satan and Me: Michael Panagakos and the Archangel Michael both look incredibly similar (excepting their eyes) and even share the same name. As characters, however, they're completely different.
  • Sluggy Freelance:
    • The medieval warlord Lord Torgamous looks exactly like modern day Torg (except for the beard). It's heavily implied to be a case of Reincarnation.
    • Subverted another time. (Or perhaps hinting at Identical Grandson.)
      "Wait a minute! You just taped a picture of Riff's head to this painting."
      "Makes the story more dramatic, don't it?"]]
    • Due to the ubiquity of dimensional travel, various minor or side characters can pop up at any time, often in wildly different roles but with the same name and usually general personality. (With the exception of the Dimension Of Lame, where all natives are significantly more friendly, peace-loving and... well, lame.)
  • In the 'Strip Club of the Damned' storyline in Something*Positive, all the strippers we see are incredibly similar to Davan's exes and female friends. Also, Kharisma.
  • In Weak Hero, Kingsley Kwan happens to look eerily similar to Hyeonjin Cha, Gerard's former bandmate. This leads to Gerard accosting Kingsley when he happens to meet him on the street, and segues into a flashback detailing Gerard's backstory and his history with Hyeonjin.
  • In this Whomp! strip, Agrias gets a text from Ronnie asking why she left him at the store, which is when she sees that she accidentally brought home a guy who looks like him but with darker skin, curlier hair, and a red maple leaf pattern shirt.
  • Yet Another Fantasy Gamer Comic: Lady Sidonie of Falconheim and Astrid Wormhunter look enough alike that people confuse them, which results in Sidonie getting kidnapped instead of Astrid. Astrid takes advantage of it to escape those kidnappers, who want to drag her back home to an Arranged Marriage she wants nothing with.

    Web Original 
  • Played with in May Xnocens. January and April look similar and someone does manage to confuse the two at one point, but April is a child while January is an adult.
  • It is the point of this Not Always Right story, where OP finds out that a similar looking women regularly visits the casino next doors to their work.

    Web Videos 
  • A running gag in Achievement Hunter videos is that despite Trevor Collins and Alfredo Diaz being two completely different people (Alfredo isn't even white), they look so eerily alike that they have been mistaken for each other, and are jokingly dubbed by the fans as either twins or "Team Same Face." Not helping their case is the fact that they are literally the same height and size (although they have since taken to disputing their heights with Alfredo believing they're 6'1 while Trevor claims they're 6'2). In fact, during Off Topic #118, they wore contrasting t-shirts and not only swapped their shirts during the episode's ad reads, they also swapped their seats. The Rooster Teeth TikTok account even posted this clip in reference to them.
    • Before this, viewers (or rather, listeners) had some major trouble figuring out whether it was Jack Pattillo or Ryan Haywood speaking in some videos, as their voices sound very similar.
  • Grant from CollegeHumor and Keith from Buzzfeed are so similar that the former site made a sketch called "Is Grant Keith from Buzzfeed?" Throughout the sketch, they swap which one is wearing which shirt — sometimes both being played by the same person — and even bring in their twin brothers Keith and Grant to make things even more confusing.
    Mike: Fuck off! No, no, you have an identical twin named Grant?
    Keith: Nah, we're fraternal.
  • Ryan George, creator and star of the Pitch Meetings series and other comedy skits on YouTube, plays all of the characters in his videos almost all of the time. In most skits the fact all his characters have the same face is not a factor, but sometimes the characters do realize they look alike. One such skit has a potential victim of identity theft realizing he might be in trouble when the aspiring criminal looks just like him.

  • "FINE, I'll review my doppelgangers" by Karolina Żebrowska: Fans of the channel often send in pictures of people that they think look like Karolina, and in this video she goes through them. Karolina has a long face, and she thinks that most of the pictures are just women with long faces. However, while they don't look like her, she thinks that she could look like them with a bit of work.
  • During the Sethan arc in Vaguely Recalling JoJo, Jotaro doesn't think that the child Polnareff is Polnareff at all and mistakes Benimaru for Polnareff.

    Western Animation 
  • American Dad!: CIA agents all have a double who is supposed to impersonate them whenever the need arises. In one episode, Stan uses his to distract Francine while he goes out with another woman (for weird but mostly platonic reasons); in another, creepy episode, the double starts dating Stan's daughter Hayley, presumably because her subconscious is looking for paternal love. (Stan winds up having to imitate the double instead, which gets really awkward really fast.)
  • Amphibia: Humphrey Westwood looks practically exactly like Hop Pop if he was human. This allows him to give Hop Pop his place in line, and later allows Hop Pop to give a role intended for him to Humphrey after making his own big break.
  • In Beast Wars, Optimus Primal has very nearly the same face as Optimus Prime (albeit with the ability to open his mouthplate and different-colored eyes), as well as a near-identical name. This is a relic of the series's original pitch, where Primal was a future version of Prime; the series proper treated him as a completely different person who just happened to look the same for no particular reason. (Not unheard of in Transformers, admittedly.)
  • Big City Greens gives us Zillon Brax, a famous pop singer who looks exactly like Cricket, minus the darker hair color and with the addition of a Tooth Strip. Their uncanny resemblance is what mistakes one for the other and vice versa.
  • The human girl Alice in The Care Bears: Adventure in Wonderland looks just like the kidnapped Princess of Heart, so she's brought into the kingdom and impersonates her while the Care Bears go rescue the princess.
  • A trio of policemen who look a lot like The Greasers appear in one episode of Catdog.
  • In the Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers episode "Gadget Goes Hawaiian" Gadget switches places with Luwhinie (spelling uncertain), who is her exact duplicate (aside from being voiced by Gidget actress Deborah Walley).
  • Chowder:
    • Colonel Chicken (who looks exactly like Chowder but dressed like Colonel Sanders) was mistaken by Mung as a ploy to get him to bake schmeanut blutter flookies. Then Chowder comes in with his actual ploy while Colonel Chicken is confused at their resemblance.
    • Another episode features Porridge, who looks exactly like Chowder except that he wears glasses and his fur is in a different shade of purple.
  • Class of 3000, "Westley Side Story": The kids from Eastley school like exactly like our protagonists from Westley.
  • In Code Lyoko Season 1 episode "The Girl of the Dreams", a New Transfer Student, Taelia, is believed to be a materialized Aelita. But besides similar looks and Significant Anagram names, they have nothing in common (unless you choose to believe some Wild Mass Guessing).
  • In the Dexter's Laboratory episode "Coupon for Crazyness", Dexter trades places with a goofy, hyperactive look-alike named Dextor who has scientist parents. He switches back when he tires of the cold, clinical parenting style of Dextor's parents.
  • In the Donald Duck cartoon Donald's Double Trouble, Donald meets another duck who looks just like him, only he speaks clearly (with a British accent, no less) and has impeccable manners. Donald convinces his double to take Daisy out on a date to win her back, as she had dumped him for his bad manners. Donald soon regrets it, as he finds his doppelganger enjoying the date a little too much.
  • The Dragon Prince: Viren bears quite the resemblance to the first human mage whom we see use Dark Magic. Whether it's this trope or Identical Grandson in play remains to be seen.
  • The DuckTales (1987) episode Double-O-Duck features Launchpad being mistaken for an enemy agent that looks exactly like him, which leads to him posing as said agent.
  • In one episode of The Fairly OddParents!, Timmy Turner's parents are arrested because they resemble a pair of criminals, the Souvenir Bandits (whose surname happens to be Turnbaum).
  • Family Guy:
    • Peter and two identical strangers (one with glasses and a larger nose, one Japanese with different hair) all get free samples of sausage at the grocery store, one after the other, then all show up at the same time for seconds.
    • In the B-plot of "Tom Tucker: The Man and His Dream", Chris starts going out with a girl who looks extremely similar to Lois.
    • In one episode, Peter was mistaken for one of the (female) baristas.
      Blue shirt barista: He doesn't look like me.
      White shirt barista: I think she meant me.
      Blue shirt barista: I can see that.
  • One episode of The Famous Adventures of Mr. Magoo has the actor Mr. Magoo asked by the police to impersonate an identical gangster in order to catch the whole gang.
  • In the Fangface episode "Royal Trouble With The King's Double", Puggsy is revealed to be the exact double of the king of a small European nation. This comes in handy when the gang get roped into helping the king thwart a coup attempt by his wicked cousin.
  • The Flintstones had an episode featuring a rich exact double of Fred who gets fed up with his stressful life and runs away. His employers then encounter Fred and ask him to take the double's place, until Fred himself also gets fed up and leaves. All the while, the double has been going around encountering Fred's friends and family and acting like a jerk to them, only for Fred to arrive home to everyone treating him like dirt and him not understanding why. Kind of sad, really.
    • The plot is recycled in another episode (with an emperor, this time). Fortunately, the confusion gets cleared up at the end.
    • Also used in the finale movie The Man Called Flintstone: Fred is called in to take over the role of the secret agent Rock Slag, who just happens to look exactly like him.
      • The Recycled In Space version of the Flintstones, The Jetsons had the exact same plot in one episode, with a random secret agent looking exactly like George Jetson.
    • A similar plot to that first example is used in an episode where an invading alien sends androids down to Earth that not only happen to look exactly like Fred, but also "Yabba dabba doo" just happens to be all they can say. Fred assumes they're his friends playing a joke gone too far, until he learns he inadvertently saved the world. This episode has a happier ending where "Fred's" strange behavior is blamed on the diet he was on and he's taken off it, much to his delight.
  • Futurama.
  • Gargoyles: Preston Vogel looks so much like Owen Burnett, you could swear that they just reused the character models with a Palette Swap. Petros Xanatos meets them and asks if they're related, which they deny. Justified because Owen is really Puck, who modeled his "Owen" persona on Preston because he thought it would be funny to imitate "the most wooden man alive".
  • In one episode of Goof Troop, Goofy and Pete are mistaken for brothers and inherited a group of sea creatures. It's then revealed that the actual inheritors look exactly like them, except for switched personalities. Finding out there are two Goofys in the world is what Pete considers his worst nightmare.
    Pete: The only thing worse would be three of ya!
  • Hailey's On It!: In "The Puffle Kerfuffle", Kylie and Thacher are the stars of a children's show called The Puffles, with Thacher looking very much like an older Scott with piercings. At the end, Thacher introduces his wife, Bailey, who looks like an older Hailey — right down to the glasses — and shares similar interests. Hailey even imagines herself and Scott as them.
  • An episode of Heathcliff & the Catillac Cats involves Henry, a lost cat with orange fur, thin black stripes, a round head, and a round black nose...note 
  • In the Inspector Gadget episode "King Wrong", Gadget is assigned to the far-off country of Pianostan to protect its unhappy king, who bears a striking resemblance to Gadget.
  • Similarly to the Josie example, this happens to Kimber in an episode of Jem when she meets (you guessed it) a princess who looks just like her.
  • Jimmy Two-Shoes gives us TCFM (or Thorn), who looks exactly like Beezy only green, and uses this to get the people of Miseryville to do what he wants.
  • One episode of Josie and the Pussycats involves a princess who looks just like Valerie.
  • Kim Possible, "Chasing Rufus": There is a couple exactly identical to Kim and Ron only with a pair of glasses and shaggy mustache respectively.
  • King Arthur & the Knights of Justice had Arthur King, Lance and to a lesser extent, the other ten as replacements for King Arthur, Sir Lancelot and the rest of the true Knights of the Round Table.
  • The Loud House: In the Halloween Episode "Tricked", Lincoln and Clyde manage to get inside Huntington Manor to trick-or-treat by posing as Alistair and Nigel, two boys who live there and look exactly like them to the point that they could be twins.
    • In the episode "No Show with the Casagrandes" the protagonist in the family’s "Adios, Ana, Adios" looks just like Ronnie Anne.
  • In Miraculous Ladybug season 3 episode 23, the eponymous character, Felix Graham de Vanily, is able to convincingly pass as Adrien just by changing his clothes and his hairstyle. Justified because he and Adrien are first cousins and their mothers were identical twins, meaning that they aren't strangers at all. Also, Felix is a jerk, so once people caught on, Felix had to think fast. The only luck he had is that Adrien is too kind of a person to let his cousin get clobbered by his upset classmates.
  • In My Gym Partner's a Monkey episode "Cheer Pressure", Adam thinks that Jake disguised himself as a girl named Jackie in order to join the cheer squad and goes to great lengths to expose him. He's quite embarrassed when he discovers that Jake and Jackie are two seperate monkeys.
  • In My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, Daring Do looks just like a Palette Swap of Rainbow Dash. As it turns out, "Daring Don't" reveals that this really is the case.
  • In The Owl House, Caleb Wittebane, Emperor Belos's older brother, looked almost exactly like Hunter, the only major differences being Hunter's scars, pointy ears, and magenta eyes. It's later revealed that Hunter is a clone of Caleb, the latest in a long line of Grimwalkers that Belos created in an attempt to make a "better version" of his brother, who he murdered for falling in love with a witch. Belos does note that while the Grimwalkers he created were all clones of the same man, Hunter is the one who looks the most like the original.
  • An episode of Pepper Ann featured a girl and her family moving into town who happen to look just like Pepper Ann and her family, with a few differences (and slightly different names).
  • Phineas and Ferb:
    • The episode "Make Play" does the Prince and Pauper plot with Candace and Princess Baldegunde of Drusselstein.
    • "Thaddeus and Thor" has the episode's title characters as ones for the show's title characters, complete with having an older sister who looks like Candace.
  • Tom and Edward in The Prince and the Pauper (1995) are this.
  • On Rugrats episode "Looking for Jack", Angelica is mistaken for the daughter of an Italian restaurant owner. As a Spoiled Brat, she takes advantage of the situation.
  • The Spacelab crew in Sealab 2021 inexplicably look like their Sealab counterparts, just with Race Lifts and, for some reason, everyone has big breasts. Yes, even the guys. They are even referred to as Space ____, which is how Sparks got away with stealing the ASHDTV from them: he signed it as Space Stormy.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Recurring character Krusty the Clown heavily resembles Homer in clown makeup, as they have similar head shapes and body types and even share a voice actor. This becomes a plot point in "Homie the Clown", where Homer becomes a Krusty impersonator and the two look so similar that no one in Springfield can tell them apart.
    • In "There's No Disgrace Like Home", an entire family of Simpsons expies (only much more kempt and well-mannered) are seen exiting Dr. Marvin Monroe's office, with the Homer lookalike even spouting Homer's old catchphrase ("Let's all go out for some frosty chocolate milkshakes"). Homer takes this as a sign that Monroe knows his stuff.
    • "Brother from the Same Planet" has Bart waiting to be picked up from his soccer game by Homer, when it starts to rain. Bart thinks he sees Homer driving by in his car, but it turns out to be a woman that looks like Homer wearing a blond wig and wearing a dress, inexplicably singing "I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar" as she drives past.
    • In "Fear of Flying", Homer is temporarily banned from Moe's due to rampant douchebaggery (for Moe, at least). Soon after, a man who looks exactly like Homer with a mustache, in a top hat and suit goes to Moe's. He introduces himself as "Guy Incognito" and is promptly beaten up and thrown out. The real Homer, passing by, is shocked to find his exact double unconscious but is suddenly distracted by a dog with a puffy tail.
    • In The Simpsons Movie, Bart doodles on a wanted poster with his family on it to prevent the owner of the store it was in from noticing it and calling the police and getting them arrested. A family resembling the modified picture ends up getting arrested after the store owner notices the poster.
    • "Double, Double, Boy in Trouble" has Bart do a Prince and Pauper plot with a rich kid who looks just like him. At the same time Bart and his rich doppelganger meet, they also meet a guy who looks like a 30-year-old version of them; that guy has a wife who looks like a 30-year-old, female version of Milhouse.
    • In "Midnight Rx", Ned Flanders meets a man in Canada who is essentially just him with lighter, permed hair. They both take part in the same "Diddly Doodly" style gibberish, but Flanders stops interacting with him when he offers him some pot.
      Canadian Flanders: Hey, would you like to puff on a reeferino? It's legal here!
      Flanders: ...They warned me Satan would be attractive. Let's go!
    • "Boy-Scoutz 'n The Hood" combined this with Funny Background Event. Bart and Lisa are watching TV and Lisa says cartoons don't have to be realistic, upon which a Homer look-alike is seen walking outside the window.
    • In "Bart the Fink," Bart shows Captain McCallister a Krusty the Clown balloon and asks if he's seen this man. McCallister calls over Handsome Pete, a tiny man with a face resembling a distorted version of Krusty, who plays "The Sailor's Hornpipe" on a concertina and dances for nickels.
  • From South Park, Eric Cartman looks a lot like Marlon Brando...and a bit like Dakota Fanning.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants, "No Weenies Allowed": a sponge identical to SpongeBob only with dark hair and the real deal (wearing a rainbow clown wig) both appear at the Salty Spittoon at the same time.
    • "Chocolate With Nuts: During a montage where SpongeBob and Patrick tell lies about chocolate to get customers to buy them, one of the customers that Patrick sell it to a starfish that looks like him, with the difference that the lookalike is wearing a Hawaiian shirt in the style of Patrick's shorts.
    • The writers used a very similar joke in season 6's "Slumber Party". Mr. Krabs sends SpongeBob to his house to spy on Pearl and her sleepover, and then someone named "Girlie Teengirl" from "Farawayville" shows up at the door, looking exactly like SpongeBob in drag. Pearl and her friends aren't fooled and send Girlie running away crying. After that, Mr. Krabs and SpongeBob show up for real, scratching their heads over who the lookalike was.
    • In season 9's "Mall Girl Pearl", Pearl goes to apply for a job at Scorched Coral (a blatant spoof of Hot Topic), only for her friend to tell her that they already gave the one open position to a whale who looks like a goth version of Pearl with black and red clothes, eyeliner, and spiky hair.
    • At the end of season 12's "The Ballad of Filthy Muck," what appeared to be Patrick covered in mud and grime turns out to actually be another individual entirely who happened to have an uncanny resemblance. The real Patrick had decided to take a shower after he was kicked out of the Krusty Krab for being unhygienic earlier, just so he could order food again.
  • Storm Hawks: In "Royal Twist", Piper meets her double: Princess Peregrine of Klockstoppia, or Perry, as she prefers to be called. A Prince and Pauper-type plot ensues, albeit not with total consent on Piper's part...
  • In the Star Trek: Lower Decks episode "Old Friends, New Planets", when Nick Locarno appears and makes his grand reveal of Nova Fleet, Rutherford realizes that Locarno looks like Tom Paris. Boimler, a major Paris fanboy, just doesn't see the resemblance.note 
  • In the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon, April O'Neil is revealed to look identical to Mallory, princess from the fictional country of Malicuria. Hilarity ensues when Shredder decides to capture Mallory in order to ransom her for the MacGuffin of the week.
  • The Top Cat episode "The Missing Heir". When reading the heir’s physical description in the newspaper, the cast realise that Benny matches that description perfectly. Unsurprisingly, by the end, it’s revealed Benny is not the heir, but the real one is near identical, outside of a birthmark on his foot (the matching birthmark on Benny turning out to actually be a piece of chewing gum).
  • In Tuca & Bertie episode "The Open House", Tuca sees two different versions of herself, Bertie, and Speckle in one of the realtor's houses.
  • In The Weekenders, Tony Tortallero looks almost identical to main character Tino Tonitini and says "Sure!" in almost the same voice. However, in neither of Tony's appearances does he ever say anything except "Sure!"
  • In one episode of Wacky Races, Dick Dastardly finds a wanted poster for an outlaw who has identical facial features to him. As a result, Dick spends the rest of the episode dressed as said outlaw in order to try and intimidate the other racers.
  • Ping Pong from Xiaolin Chronicles looks like a smaller Omi with green glasses, a similarity which is pointed out in-universe.
  • In Yogi's Great Escapenote , in the "western ghost town" scene, Quick Draw McGraw mistakes Yogi and Boo-Boo for an identical pair of outlaws who were wanted for cattle rustling.


Rodney Banks

Niles meets a look-alike in Rodney Banks, Daphne's new boyfriend.

How well does it match the trope?

4.42 (12 votes)

Example of:

Main / IdenticalStranger

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