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Long-Lost Uncle Aesop

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"And really, what did you expect them to do? Kill off Skippy? Or take time out from earlier episodes to throw in some random friend named Greg, just to give his death some meaning? Come on, it was the '80s. That time was much better spent on original songs by Tina Yothers."
The Agony Booth, on the Family Ties episode "A, My Name is Alex"

The favorite relative/best friend character who appears in only a few episodes or just one Very Special Episode, was never mentioned before, and is never heard from again. They usually provide An Aesop, like "drunk driving is bad" or "beware of strange adults."

The purpose of these characters seems to be delivering the moral without having to inflict the issue on a regular basis, or, in the case of a fatal Aesop, kill off anyone important. You get the 22 minutes of angst, but the writers never have to deal with it again. Long Lost Uncle Aesops don't sit well with shows that have loyal fandoms, and are incompatible with the Economy Cast.

Please keep in mind that this trope isn't just the sudden appearance and disappearance of characters who would logically be significant; this trope involves characters who are billed as significant to the protagonists who appear, drop their Aesop, then go back into the aether. See also Compressed Vice (when the issue is inflicted on a regular for one episode), Remember the New Guy?, Forgotten Fallen Friend, New Neighbours as the Plot Demands. Gay Aesops tend to be this as well.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Kim in Fist of the North Star, who was Ryuken's fifth student before being expelled from his dojo, is only shown in a flashback to emphasize Kenshiro's compassion to others, and is never mentioned anywhere else in the series.
  • Himitsu no Akko-chan, the original 1969 series, introduces into the small crew of friends of the schoolgirl Akko-chan a deaf-mute kid. He'll never be seen after episode 32, and his only role is apparently stir Akko-chan's compassion enough to wish on herself deaf-muteness to better understand him, only to start breaking apart when, unable to reverse her own wish, she finds herself unable to handle the condition her new friend was bearing. Upon imparting the main character the much needed Aesop, the kid abruptly vanishes, and he's never seen or talked about. Ever.
  • Sailor Moon:
    • Sailor Moon did this a lot, since the characters often doubled as a Victim of the Week. It's especially jarring as it's occasionally suggested the leads have trouble making friends and seem to have no real social life outside of their small group, despite meeting and getting along with people fairly quickly each episode.
    • Urawa (Greg in the dub) shows up as a Victim of the Week who learns not to be fatalistic or cheat on tests just because he can see the future with perfect accuracy; he's one of the rare few to get a second appearance, but after that he drops off the face of the earth. It's especially weird because the senshi are later shown to keep in touch with villains they've healed, and Urawa is lucky enough to keep his magical powers even after his crystal's been removed. Who knows how many problems they might have averted if they kept a precognitive on the B-squad?

    Comic Books 
  • Aside from her trademarked obsession with polka-dots, this was Little Dot's main gimmick: a never-ending assortment of uncles and aunts, most of whom had their own all-consuming passion - e.g., Uncle Smoke and smoking.
  • The Protector, a character who showed up in an anti-drugs Teen Titans issue strictly to espouse those virtues. Unusually for most of these, his creation owed strictly to the fact that the creators of said anti-drug comic didn't have the rights to Robin, forcing the creation of a Captain Ersatz.

    Films — Animation 
  • The Winds Of Change from Rocko's Modern Life: Static Cling is a new character who shows up completely out of nowhere to attempt to deliver the special's aesop about change. Except he doesn't actually get to deliver the aesop, Ed Bighead is the one who does it instead.

    Films — Live Action 
  • Spice World brings in a pregnant best friend for the Spice Girls, Nicola, so that the girls can ponder the lessons of maternity without actually experiencing it.

  • A staple of the YA girls' series popular in the 1990s — not surprising, considering these books were sitcom episodes in print form.
    • A typical example from The Baby-Sitters Club series: Amelia, suddenly introduced as a close friend of Mary Anne, was never been mentioned before the book in which she's killed by a drunk driver to teach the moral of the story. The BSC used this a lot. A new baby-sitting client would be introduced at the beginning of the book, needing the services of the club, and naturally after a few sitting jobs the girls would realize something was up. The most pointed examples are Keep Out, Claudia!, dealing with a mother whose super-Aryanism would be comical if it wasn't so disconcerting, and Claudia and the Terrible Truth, where the girls learn that two boys are being physically abused by their father. The latter is one of the creepiest books in the entire series.
  • The Apprenticeship of Duddy Krawitz brings in several ephemeral characters to illustrate specific ideas in the protagonist's young life.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Lucy's friend Sarah in the 7th Heaven episode "Nothing Endures but Change" had never been seen or even mentioned before the episode. (However, she did get a mention three seasons later, by Lucy herself while she acted as grief counselor to her friend Mike and his shell-shocked mother.)
  • In one Very Special Episode of Boy Meets World, Shawn and Cory help protect a classmate who is being physically abused by her dad, and at the end of the episode she is sent to live with her aunt in another state. This girl was never seen before this episode and is never mentioned again.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • In the episode "Lie To Me" from season two, there is Ford, Buffy's "best friend" from her old high school in L.A. Ford is dying of a brain tumor, and bargains with Spike to be turned into a vampire in exchange for Buffy. Justified in that Buffy had moved a year ago, presumably leaving some her friends behind, and she'd spent the summer break back there, offscreen.
    • In "Killed By Death", Buffy exhibits a phobic reaction to being in the hospital, and we learn that it's because of her cousin Celia's death when they were kids. They were close, and Buffy was traumatized as a result of watching her die. While some of this trauma is legitimately resolved in the episode (by finding and killing the invisible monster that killed Celia), the lack of mention of Celia before or after makes the whole thing seem to come out of nowhere. It is particularly jarring because Buffy spends a great deal of time visiting the hospital in Season Five, and shows no phobia beyond an appropriate reaction to the immediate circumstances. Nor does the First Evil ever manifest in Celia's form, which would seem an obvious way to get under Buffy's skin if the writers still remembered the character. Granted, the actress playing Celia - a long-deceased child character - could not conceivably return, since the First Evil was only prominent five years later. It might've worked in the Season 3 episode "Amends", but then the First was focusing more on Angel than Buffy.
    • Buffy subverts this in the episode "The Puppet Show," however. When Emily (the dancer) is killed, Cordelia claims that she has lost "like, my best friend" - although Emily had never been mentioned on the show before. A subversion because Cordelia refers to Emily incorrectly as "Emma" during this speech and Xander calls her on never really having known the girl.
  • In the Criminal Minds episode "The Fallen", we meet David Rossi's old Vietnam sergeant who had a profound effect on Rossi's life (despite the fact that Rossi never mentioned him before this episode, and he'd been on the team at this point for five years), and whose sole existence in the episode is to provide the underlying message of "support our troops at all costs". It's justified in the fact that the sergeant fell off the grid after becoming homeless.
  • A first season episode of Dawson's Creek featured a character named Mary-Beth who was supposedly a friend of Dawson's with a crush on him.
  • Elementary: In the final season, the 11th Precinct is temporarily led for a few episodes after Captain Gregson is shot and seriously injured by a Captain Dwyer, who is supposedly an old buddy of Gregson but has never appeared or been mentioned before. After Gregson returns, he discovers that one of his top female officers (who has also never appeared or been mentioned before) is leaving the force due to being sexually harassed by Dwyer. Both characters are then used for a slightly heavy-handed single-episode subplot about the evils of sexual harassment.
  • Family Ties:
    • Alex P. Keaton's Uncle Ned (played by Tom Hanks) appears twice; first as a fugitive who stole money from his company, and later as a raging alcoholic.
    • The show addressed Teen Pregnancy, not by inflicting it on Mallory, but by bringing in Mallory's friend we've never seen before.
    • Likewise, in another famed two-parter, Alex spends 40 minutes grieving over the sudden death of his close special friend... Whatshisname. Seriously, we'd never heard of him before, or ever would again. To a lesser extent, Season 3 featured brief appearances by "James" with the writers going to great lengths to try and convince the audience that he has been Alex's best friend/rival since childhood.
    • Mallory would have a few of these episodes as well. A "beloved" aunt who was like a best friend to Mallory ends up dying. Another episode had Mallory dealing with the mother of a friend who committed suicide. Neither the aunt or friend were mentioned before or after their respective episodes. There was also an episode in which she was unsure of what to do when a character her parents' age whom she knew as "Uncle Arthur" (thankfully not an actual uncle) kissed her. He never showed up again either, although given what he did, it's not hard to imagine that the family cut off all contact with him.
  • The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air:
    • One episode has a young man appear claiming to be Geoffrey's illegitimate son. When Will catches him stealing money, he doesn't want to tell Geoffrey for fear of upsetting him. When Geoffrey does find out, he forgives his son because that's what family does. The episode ends with them hugging and his son leaving. In the series finale, Geoffrey moves back to England to be with him.
    • Another episode has Will's Disappeared Dad coming back. It ends with him abandoning Will again and Will angrily declaring that he's done with him.
  • Full House:
    • Uncle Jesse's grandfather, referred to as "Papouli"note , came from Greece to visit and have fun with everybody, then died about midway through the episode. They mourned, the Very Special Episode taught us how to cope with old people dying, and Papouli was never mentioned again. To be fair, this was his second appearance on the show. The Greek relatives visited in an early season episode.
    • Also, the episode about Stephanie's classmate that gets beaten. Jesse makes some calls, the kid's removed from his home, and he's never mentioned again.
  • The George Lopez Show did this often with guest stars, especially with Carmen's friends and boyfriends, examples including Carmen's boyfriend of one episode with an Aesop about being pressured into sex and Carmen's best friend of one episode telling her about the trend of wearing different colored bracelets to symbolize different places you had sex.
  • In the Glee episode "Laryngitis", when Rachel loses her voice, Finn takes her to meet a quadriplegic friend of his who became paralyzed after an accident playing football. His Aesop was that he lost his ability to do what he loves most, but is working around that in order to live a fulfilling life. What makes this example particularly bad is that Glee is known for keeping track of its recurring characters, no matter how minor.
  • Matthew Perry's appearances as "Sandy" on Growing Pains.
  • Done several times in Hollyoaks. One the best-remembered examples is when Hannah Ashworth went to a treatment facility for her anorexia and befriended a fellow patient named Melissa, who subsequently died from her illness (prompting Hannah to want to get better.) A very similar storyline took place when Jason Roscoe goes into a clinic for his body dysmorphia and is encouraged by a new friend to take diet pills... then the friend dies from abusing the pills.
  • M*A*S*H:
    • In the first-season episode "Sometimes You Hear the Bullet", Hawkeye's happy-go-lucky best friend Tommy arrives just in time to get hit with the aforementioned noisy — and fatal — missile.
    • Margaret's "best friend" from the army shows up in order to have a drinking problem so the writers can make An Aesop about alcoholism. This is despite the fact that the entire main cast drinks heavily; Hawkeye in particular is probably an alcoholic.
    • Col. Potter has had more than one "old army buddy" show up, prove themselves incapable of leading their men, and thereby putting Col. Potter in an awkward situation where he is torn between friendship and his responsibility as an army officer.
    • There is a slight subversion in the episode "Who Knew?" A nurse we never heard of before, whom we never saw on screen, is killed in order to give Hawkeye some character development and make him think about the way he treats women. Justified in that the entire point was that he never really got to know her, because he keeps himself emotionally distant from everybody.
  • Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers did this sort of thing a lot. One episode featured Kimberly's friend who's deaf (revealing that the Pink Ranger knows Sign Language in the process), appearing just in time to be immune to a music-related Monster of the Week's powers, while dropping an Aesop on being nice to people with disabilities. One could argue that the girl could be a friend from school, but she still came out of the blue.
  • An episode of Mr. Belvedere revolves around Wesley's best friend Danny, who never appeared in previous episodes, having AIDS. After misconceptions about AIDS are cleared up and Wesley reconciles with Danny, he is never seen again.
  • The "She's Positive" episode of The Parkers had T meet the girl of his dreams, but finds out that she is HIV positive. At the end, they decide to continue their relationship but to take it one day at a time. The girl is never seen or mentioned again.
  • in Robin Hood, we learn (for the first time) in the fourth-to-last episode of the entire show that Robin's never-before-mentioned father and Guy's never-before-mentioned parents were all killed together in a fire. Except that Robin's father Malcolm didn't die, and he's actually been wandering Sherwood all this time without ever bothering to help or get in contact with his own sons or the two orphaned children of the women he loved. He reappears to tell Robin and Guy that they need to work together in order to rescue their mutual half-brother Archer.
  • In one episode of Saved by the Bell, Zack learned a valuable lesson about his Native American heritage (which is never discussed on any other episodes) from a man named Chief Henry, who promptly died at the end of act 2, allowing Zack to learn yet another valuable lesson about losing loved ones.
  • Scrubs:
    • Scrubs takes place in a hospital, with a constant flow of patients, a setting almost tailor-made for introducing guest stars and Aesops. For some lessons, the emotional impact or context appropriateness of a random patient may not work for the Aesop so they'll say Remember the New Guy? and bring in a unmentioned family member or a hospital colleague who somehow never made it on camera.
    • An interesting case is the patient trapped in an MRI machine with her face obscured. Cue the Aesop about taking chances for about the third time. Then they start dating and she appears in a later episode and they bring her into another plot and another Aesop by having her work as a social worker (or similar) who deals with patients. The two episodes could have easily been written for two different characters. And then she had a pill addiction, making it a threefer.
    • Ryan Reynolds played J.D. and Turk's never-heard-of-before college roommate. Justified in that this was only halfway through the second season, but he's never heard of again despite the fact that the rest of the series has dozens of flashbacks to their college days, and despite his character being notable for accidentally telling Doctor Cox that Jordan's baby was his, which was a fairly significant plot point. Likewise, Doctor Cox in season 4 is given an old black best friend who Cox discovers has an autistic son, and promises to help out, but he is not seen again either (notably, Cox also passes him on to another old friend of his, whom we don't see at all, who specialises in helping autistic kids).
    • It happens with their families too. Carla's brother has the distinction of lasting most of a season, but afterwards is never heard from again, not even to meet his baby niece; her sisters only make cameo appearances in a couple of episodes. Turk's brother gets one episode, and phones Turk in another confirming that he can make Turk's wedding (though as far as the audience can see, he doesn't). Their families do get mentions, but they seem to miss nearly every important occasion. Averted with J.D.'s brother Dan, who is a semi-recurring character, and Elliot's parents, who are mentioned frequently and appear on occasion. Justified with J.D.'s father, who was respectfully killed off thanks to The Character Died with Him, and Doctor Cox's sister, whom he simply doesn't like to talk about as she reminds him of their painful, abusive childhood. Also justified with Jordan's sister Dani, who was a recurring supporting character but vanished from the last seasons; this was mostly in-character.
    • The Janitor likes to play with this trope. In one episode he puts on a fake mustache and denim jacket and tries to convince everyone that he is his own twin brother (nobody buys it); in another he pretends a nearby child is his son to make J.D. feel bad about insulting him. In a third he mentions his father died, causing J.D. to call him out by pointing out that he had met his father in a previous episode; the Janitor merely responds that "you met a man".
  • The BBC once did a week of shows covering domestic violence and asked Neighbours to include an appropriate storyline that week. The result: Boyd Hoyland's rarely seen friend Daniel Clohesy reveals that his never-before-seen father has hit him.
  • The Secret Life of the American Teenager had Ricky's never-mentioned former foster brother Ethan show up so the show could have a very special episode about sexting.
  • All Star Trek series have featured entire Aesop species who were brought in to visit their one problem and have the humans note  fix it or at least tell them what their problem was. One of the most overt examples was an early TNG with a race of drug addicts supplied by a race of providers. It falls short as an allegory of modern drug addiction as the addicted species were led to believe the drug was a treatment for a disease (which it technically was, but the providers neglected to tell the addicts that the disease had long since been wiped out and the only thing the drug was still treating was withdrawal symptoms, making the situation an addiction to prescription medicine prescribed by an unethical doctor who deliberately didn't warn his client about the risk of addiction).
  • Nathan Kress played one of these — a wheelchair-bound accident victim — on The Suite Life of Zack & Cody.
  • That '70s Show episode "Eric's Buddy" featured a new gay character. Even though he and Eric became good friends during the episode, he was never seen or referenced again. This was because the introduction of another love interest for Eric, at a time that he and Donna aren't together yet and Hyde is also attempting to date Donna, wasn't well-received by audiences.
  • An episode of Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger introduced a girl called Teresa as the love of Hoji's life, but he discovers that her brother is an evil Alienizer, leading him to question whether he can bring himself to arrest and "delete" the guy knowing that it will break Teresa's heart. After a lesson is learned about doing the right thing no matter how painful it feels, Teresa is found to be terminally ill, and leaves Hoji so she can become a nun and atone for her "sin" during her final days.
  • Two and a Half Men has an episode about Charlie's best friend (played by Charlie Sheen's real life brother) dying from having a similar lifestyle to his. What's interesting is that said best friend had never been mentioned before and was never mentioned again. In fact, Alan didn't even know him in spite of having lived at Charlie's house for quite some time by then.

    Puppet Shows 
  • In 2010, Sesame Street has a special called "When Families Grieve" that deals with death. Elmo's never-before-mentioned Posthumous Character Uncle Jack is mentioned to teach kids about death.

    Web Animation 
  • Intended, but then subverted, with the character of Velvet in RWBY. Her original function in Volume 1 was to simply give a face to the concept of anti-Faunus discrimination, but she proved so popular almost instantly that she returned in Volumes 2 and 3 as a supporting character, and her team later received a tie-in novel after Volume 6.

    Web Comics 
  • Bruno the Bandit had Bruno's cousin Tito brought in the storyline "Tito the Thief" for a Gay Aesop. He came in, came out, went through some tribulations, gave the moral and then headed off with his lover.

    Western Animation 
  • Fievel's Aunt Sophie from Russia, in the An American Tail Animated Series Fievel's American Tails, appears for only one episode; her Aesop is mainly just convincing Papa not to be so strict on his son.
  • The Arthur episode "So Long, Spanky" showed D.W. having a pet bird, whose only role in the episode was to be part of an Aesop about death.
  • Captain Planet and the Planeteers:
    • In one episode, Linka visits her cousin Boris who gets her hooked on drugs, and she turns into an addicted zombie. Said cousin dies of an overdose by the end of the episode, driving home the anti-drug Aesop.
    • On the villains' side, we have Robin Plunder and Hoggish Greedly, Jr, who each appear for one episode.
    • There's also Bambi Blight in the episode where the Planeteers learned not to judge a person based on their family.
    • One episode features Wheeler's old friend, Trish, for a lesson about the wrongness of gang activity.
  • El Chavo Animado has Rosita in the episode "El valor de la amistad" (The value of friendship). She only appears to fix the children's friendship and teach them to forgive. It is hinted that she is a magical being at the end of the episode, as she transforms into a flying magical sphere.
  • The Tonight, Someone Dies episode of Clone High introduced - and killed - Ponce de Leon (portrayed as The Fonz and voiced by Luke Perry) as JFK's inseparable best friend, despite the fact that JFK was the main character who had already appeared extensively. Considering this is Clone High, however, this was the joke to begin with: the opening narration even promised a main character would die and went on to specifically insist this wasn't "that thing were they introduce a character only to die" while repeatedly showing images of the as-of-yet unintroduced Ponce.
  • Dexter's Laboratory had two examples:
  • The Fairly OddParents!: Timmy Turner's grandfather Pappy only appears in the episode "The Good Old Days", where the moral is understanding that works of fiction from the past have their merits and Timmy ends up bonding with his grandfather by wishing to Cosmo and Wanda that the world was like a 1930's cartoon. It's just as well that Pappy isn't ever seen again, as his rambling to Timmy's parents about their experiences causes Mrs. Turner to assume that Pappy has gone senile and forbids him from ever again being a viable alternative to having Vicky look after Timmy while his parents are away.
  • Family Guy:
    • In "Peter, Peter, Caviar Eater," Lois's Aunt Margaritte comes to visit right at the beginning of the episode, but drops dead even before completing her first line, right there at the front door. On the commentary track, Seth MacFarlane explains that this scene was a direct parody of characters like this.
    • Family Guy has also played this trope straight on a few occasions. Lois's brother appears in one episode as a maniac (also doubling as a Monster of the Week) before never being seen again aside from a parody of The Silence of the Lambs where he was brought out of jail to help hunt a killer who was murdering kids at a fat camp. Lois's sister shows up in one episode to have a baby before never appearing again, though this has been averted since Season 9 where she married Mayor West.
    • Brenda Quagmire from the episode "The Story of Brenda Q" counts as well. Though she previously made a cameo in "Jerome is the New Black", when Brian sees her, beaten, and mistakenly thinks it's a woman Quagmire had a wild time with; Quagmire then explains that she gets abused by her boyfriend, who then shows up to beat her.
    • The episode "Peter's Sister" introduces Karen, who is... well, guess. The justification is that Peter never mentions her because she used to bully him when they were kids. At the end of the episode, Peter is informed that she is in the hospital and he refuses to have his blood type checked to donate blood for her. So it's likely she will never be seen again.
    • In another episode "Papa Has A Rollin' Son", Joe's father Bud, who has never been seen or mentioned, comes to Quahog with a Jerkass attitude towards people with disabilities... until he finds out that Joe is paralyzed and in a wheelchair himself. Bud immediately has a change of heart, after which he's never seen or mentioned again.
  • Jem did this a few times for Very Special Episodes. For example, Laura Holloway only existed in the episode "Alone Again" to get addicted to drugs and teach An Aesop. She's a more justified example than some, since it's specifically mentioned that she's only staying at the foster house temporarily, unlike the other Starlight Girls; nevertheless, she's never referenced again after she leaves.
  • Cousin Joss in Kim Possible. The Broken Aesop learned is that Kim isn't really a hero, because she can beat supervillains in her sleep; instead, Ron is the real hero, because he's a This Loser Is You who sucks, but still will follow Kim anywhere despite his fear.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • "Griffon the Brush Off" has Gilda, a childhood friend of Rainbow Dash, who turns out to be a grump, a thief, and a bully. Eventually subverted in season 5's "The Lost Treasure of Griffonstone", where she makes another appearance.
      Rainbow Dash: Not cool.
    • Pinkie Pie's phlegmatic sister Maud is introduced for the sole purpose of teaching the Mane Six that their shared love of Pinkie is reason enough for them to consider Maud a close friend, even though they share no common interests with her. Maud was mysteriously absent in the first Pinkie Pie fillyhood flashback as well. She does reappear in future episodes though.
    • Fluttershy's brother shows up in one episode to teach the class "Don't be a freeloading tool" and promptly vanishes back into the void. Oddly, when he does appear in a later episode he's been reduced to Plucky Comic Relief and his genuine (if poor) attempt at holding down a job isn't enough to keep him from being fired.
    • Rainbow Dash's parents are finally introduced for the sole purpose of showing that you should never take your parents for granted, no matter how embarrassing they can be.
  • Cruella's mother Malevola appears in one episode of 101 Dalmatians: The Series and announces during a family reunion that she will leave her fortune to the De Vil who gets Dearly Farm for her. Cruella wins but, once she hears her mother announcing her intention to move there, undoes it all - no matter how much she loves money, it's not worth having to put up with her mother all the time. Once Cruella gets bold enough to say this to her mother, Malevola is unexpectedly proud of her for finally proving to be a De Vil, and makes Cruella her heiress anyway.
  • Lampshaded in the South Park episode "Red Man's Greed." An unfamiliar boy named Alex Glick appears in the crowd throughout the episode expressing his concern for the fate of the town. After he delivers the Aesop at the end, Stan finally asks who he is, and it's revealed that he's some guy who got to do a guest voice.
  • Static Shock:
    • Apart from Static and Gear, most of the good Bang Babies simply stuck around long enough for us to learn their Special Problem, then disappeared into the ether.
    • The show also had a rather anvilicious episode about school shootings, where Virgil and Richie befriend a boy who's badly bullied by a popular Jerk Jock. However, we have never seen these two before this episode and never see them again afterward, despite the latter's alleged popularity and the lengths Virgil and Richie go to befriend the former. There's also the fact that most school shooters in real life are morbid and unstable to begin with, not bullied kids pushed too far.
    • There is an episode that reveals that Richie's father is racist and doesn't want him to bring his black best friend over. What gives this episode a touch of moral complexity is Richie's mother, who is not racist herself but still loves her husband.
  • Steven Universe:
    • Parodied in "Say Uncle", when Uncle Grandpa shows up in Beach City in a crossover episode, helping Steven learn to show him how to summon his shield as an Eccentric Mentor who uses rocket launchers, snakes, bees, and vaporizers to help Steven's shield which Uncle Grandpa erroneously believes to emerge whenever Steven's in danger. Mr. Gus, who has an extensive knowledge of magical beings, sets Uncle Grandpa straight by telling him that Steven's gem shield summoning is based on emotional clarity. When the Gems attack U.G., Steven, who has learned more about summoning his shield by defending U.G., tells them that they can't attack people just because you don't understand them, and that you should take time to listen to what the other person has to say.
    • Subverted with Bismuth, who shows up in her eponymous episode as one of these, a Well-Intentioned Extremist to teach Steven the perils of using shattering as a solution to evil. She eventually comes around in a later episode, and rejoins the Crystal Gems permanently in time for the finale, movie, and Sequel Series.
  • Teen Titans had one, an alien named Val-Yor in the episode "TROQ". He comes to Earth to enlist the Titans to help him defeat some evil robotic aliens who, according to him, want to wipe all organic life. Unfortunately, he turns out to be a racist jerk who treats Starfire with contempt due to her species, calling her by the slur "Troq" , meaning "nothing" in her language. The rest of the Titans eventually find out about this and swiftly turn on Val-Yor. An aesop is dispensed about how being racist is bad and that some people will never change, and Val-Yor is never seen or heard from again after taking off back into space.
  • C.L.I.D.E., a robot character introduced in the Tiny Toon Adventures episode "Elephant Issues" (specifically, the short "C.L.I.D.E. and Prejudice") whose main purpose is to make the episode address racism, with Montana Max, unsurprisingly, as the main antagonist. He was, however, going to have a recurring role on Animaniacs alongside Egghead Jr. from the Foghorn Leghorn cartoons, but this idea was scrapped.

Alternative Title(s): Uncle Ned