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"The plaque for Burbank was filed in May first, 1887, by Dave Burbank, a dentist from the East Coast who got a wild hare up his ass one day and said, 'I'm gonna go west and form a town', and indeed he did! End of story! That's it, that's all that happened... Burbank was all like, 'Hey do you mind if I, uh, form a town here?' 'Sure, go ahead!' The end!"

A universal trope, spotted as often in reality as it is in fiction. Our Founder is a statue or other work of art of the founder of something, possibly a Founder of the Kingdom, be they a brave pioneer who established a colony in the New World, a missionary traveling the land building communities for his faith, a conqueror on his way to fame and riches, or a big-shot mogul who struck Big Business and got a nice-size stone replica of himself for his efforts. These are often to be spotted at crossroads, communal plazas downtown, or at parks, with some nice benches with old ladies feeding pigeons on them.

A favorite of megalomaniacal despots with imperial aspirations and a very common decorative feature in places with villains that put their face on everything.


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  • Since the marketing campaign that reintroduced "Jack", the Jack in the Box clown, as "CEO" of Jack in the Box, all Jack in the Box locations have prominently displayed a ornately framed portrait of Jack, with the inscription, "Our Founder" at the bottom.
  • Wendy's reached a high in cultural awareness with its 1984 "Where's the Beef?" campaign, but several company business decisions soon took a significant toll. This led the company's president to approach founder Dave Thomas to take a more active role. He started regularly visiting franchises, and more significantly became the company's TV spokesman in 1989. It took a few years, but Wendy's regained its past cachet and then some. Thomas went on to appear in over 800 Wendy's commercials, including every one that aired in the 1990s, only stopping shortly before his death from cancer in 2002.
  • Papa John's Pizza followed in Wendy's footsteps, using founder John Schnatter as its main corporate spokesman for most of the 2010s. That ended when a 2017 dispute between Schnatter and the company's board led to Schnatter's departure as CEO, and turned into an Old Shame in 2018 when a racial comment Schnatter made to the company's advertising agency became public, soon leading to his departure from the mostly ceremonial role as chairman of the board. The discovery process in a lawsuit brought by Schnatter later revealed that in context, he was using said racial comment to criticize racism. The revelation came too late to do much for his public image.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Doraemon: Nobita's Secret Gadget Museum have a statue of Dr. Hartmann, founder of the titular museum, at it's front entrance.
  • Kamina gets a statue at the heart of Kamina City at the halfway point of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann. He didn't live long enough to found the city himself, but he was the inspiration to its actual founders. After it is learned that his actions incurred the wrath of Scary Dogmatic Aliens, the Antispiral, the statue is toppled by panicking citizens as a sign of refutation.
  • Naruto:
    • The Hokage, including Konoha's founder, are honored in this manner; the cliff overlooking their village depicts the faces of all the Hokages/village leaders thus far. Also subverted as the other village founder Uchiha Madara is remembered as a villain and does not have a statue in Konoha.
    • Similarly, Suna's Kazekage's are honoured with life-sized statues. It's unclear whether the other major ninja villages have something similar.
  • Legend of the Galactic Heroes: Arle Heinessen, founder of the Free Planets Alliance has a huge statue of himself towering over the capital, bearing a close resemblance to Rio de Janeiro's "Christ the Redeemer".
  • Little Witch Academia (2017): Luna Nova has nine in the form of the Nine Olde Witches, the greatest witches of their time, who were also responsible for creating the Grand Triskelion. Two are seen; Woodward, who was something of a mentor to Chariot, and Beatrix, the ancestor of the Cavendish family.
  • Parodied in the Ranma ˝ anime. Principal Kunō is extremely fond of statues of himself, including a big one he'd set up at the entrance of Fūrinkan Highschool "for students to prostrate before". It is promptly destroyed by Ranma, who isn't even paying attention.
  • Spy X Family: Eden Academy has a statue of its founder in the courtyard. To make a good impression for enrollment, Loid, Yor, and Anya, pay their respects to boost their chances.
  • Mayonaka ni Kiss: A variation. Instead of a statue of Ichijou Group's founder, the Ichijous have a painting of the founder's wife. When their main hotel in Tokyo is facing difficult times, the painting is sent there from their mansion upon Nono's suggestion.
  • At the end of Valvrave the Liberator, Shouko shows the aliens a pantheon of sculptures representing the kamitsuki whose Heroic Sacrifice made the founding of the Empire possible, with pride of place given to Haruto.
  • The main setting of Lapis Re:LiGHTs, Flora Girls' Academy, has a statue of its eponymous founder at its entrance.

    Comic Books 
  • Cornelius Coot, the founder of Duckburg, Donald Duck and entourage's duck-inhabited home town, in the Carl Barks-penned issues of Walt Disney Comics. The story "Statuesque Spendthrifts" had Uncle Scrooge McDuck and a foreign Raj competing to build the biggest statue of Coot; it got to the point where you couldn't see the statues in their entirety from within the town borders.
  • There's a statue of Civil War-era trader Ezra Small outside Smallville city hall in some Superman continuities.
  • Judge Dredd: At the entrance of Deadworld's Hall of (In)Justice stands a statue of Judge Death to mark the spot where he killed the last living human, a founding monument for the new kingdom of the dead.

    Comic Strips 

    Fan Works 
  • Half-Life: Full Life Consequences: John Freeman, Saver of Humens.
  • Evil Calvin sets up one of these monuments after taking over the world in Retro Chill.
  • In the Discworld-themed fics of A.A. Pessimal, there are an awful lot of places in White Howondaland named for a colonial adventurer called Sir Cecil Smith-Rhodes. These begin with a whole country - Smith-Rhodesia. Even his wife got one - the town of Ladysmith-Rhodes. New Scrote is named for the village in the Sto Plains where Cecil was born. The progress of Cecil Smith-Rhodes across the Rimwards end of the continent of Howondaland is marked by the inevitable statues set up in his honour. A descendent of Sir Cecil visits Smith-Rhodesia for the first time, and follows the trail of statues in towns he founded, in Gap Year Adventures.
  • The Bridge: Queen Amatheia united the Mermares into a single civilization. The Mermares' capital, Mako Island, has a life size statue of her. Her successors just get busts.
  • Homecoming, 2026: The statue of the founder of Whateley Academy is noted:
    The bus circled around the historic statue of Noah Whateley

    Films — Animation 
  • Cars: Radiator Springs has a statue of Stanley Steamer.
  • At the end of Lucky Luke: The Ballad of the Daltons, a statue of the late Henry Dalton is seen next to the orphanage that was built thanks to his money. More specifically, it's a statue of Henry Dalton on a horse and about to be hanged.
  • Metegol: The new town has a statue that honors the full team, with Amadeo taking point. The old town had a statue to honor its founder before El Grosso destroyed it.
  • In Osmosis Jones, the "founder" of Frank is (what else?) a sperm cell.
  • Phineas and Ferb The Movie: Candace Against the Universe shows a statue of John P. Tri-State, the founder of the Tri-State Area.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, there is a statue of Helm Hammerhand in Helm's Deep, though it is not named in the dialogue. It may be mentioned in the director's commentary, though. They don't directly name the statue, but his horn is explicitly named at least once.
    Theoden: The Horn of Helm Hammerhand shall sound in the deep, one last time!
  • There's a statue of the founder of the college in Animal House, complete with super-bland quote/motto "Knowledge Is Good".
  • Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure. There's a statue of Bill and Ted in The Future! In this case, they're not the actual founders of the future community. It was just totally enlightened by their radical "Be excellent to each other / Party on, dudes" philosophy.
  • The first Fantastic Four (2005) movie begins with Reed and Ben visiting Victor Von Doom to get funding for Reed's experiment; the two pause to watch as a gigantic statue of Doom is being erected outside his offices.
  • Not the founder of Gotham, but the Goddamn Batman gets a statue erected in remembrance of his heroic deeds at the end of The Dark Knight Rises.
  • In Star Trek: First Contact, Geordi mentions to Zephram Cochrane that the spot where he's standing is the future location of a statue of himself in the 24th century. He tries to Refuse the Call after hearing this, and has to be stunned by Riker.
    Riker: You told him about the statue?
  • Planet of the Apes:
    • Battle for the Planet of the Apes has a statue of Caesar, the ape civilization's founder.
    • The Planet of the Apes (2001) remake ends when Leo walks up the stairs of the Lincoln Memorial and sees the statue of General Thade, who went back in time farther than Leo and started an ape rebellion.
  • High School High has a Running Gag in which the students regularly desecrate the statue of the school's founder.
  • In Jurassic World, the late John Hammond has a statue erected of him outside the Hammond Creation Lab, complete with a hue-accurate replica of his famous amber-topped walking stick.
  • In Loose Screws, Principal Arsenault has the honor of presenting a statue of Cockswell Academy's founder at a school assembly. The four main characters of the film rig it to emit an aphrodisiac gas that makes the school faculty all horny. It even grunts and pants when it sees the foreign language teacher Mona Lott do a striptease.
  • The film adaptation of Li'l Abner features Dogpatch's statue of Confederate general Jubilation T. Cornpone. It plays a role in the plot when it turns out it contains a proclamation from Abraham Lincoln declaring Dogpatch a national monument, to honor Cornpone's unintentional help in the Union winning the Civil War.

  • Isaac Asimov's "In a Good Cause—": The story opens by describing the statue raised to commemorate the ideals of Altmayer, and the Twist Ending reveals how completely irrelevant he was to realizing it.
  • The novel Who Plugged Roger Rabbit? has the "Toontown Telltale" headquarters, where a popular checkout-line tabloid is printed. The columns at the door are carved to resemble the paper's four Toon founders: Sleazy, Slimey, Dreck, and Profane. Let that be an indication of the contents of the paper.
  • Subverted in Diana Wynne Jones's Year of the Griffin, the statue of the wizard Policant actually turns out to be Policant, who apparently turned himself into a statue as part of a prophecy, to be revived in the titular Year of the Griffin.
  • Discworld:
    • Alberto Malich, founder of Unseen University. When Malich returns from Death's country in Mort and destroys his statue, they believe the statue has come to life. When Malich goes back, the wizards recommend that the replacement statue be constructed in a very secure dungeon.
    • In Interesting Times, Rincewind finds a statue of One Sun Mirror, founder of the Agatean Empire, on a pedestal of gold in a lake of quicksilver beneath a huge artificial hill built by the Forbidden City. He notes the inscription on it, which simply says "One Sun Mirror". The implication being that no-one standing there could fail to know who that was.
    • There's a statue of Khuft, the founder of Djelibeybi, in Pyramids. It shows a noble figure with a patriarchal face, an outstretched hand and a chin you could crack rocks on. When Teppic has a vision of a toothless and rather shifty old man in a grubby loincloth, it takes him a while to make the connection.
  • The statue at the Ministry of Magic in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix which is replaced by a Nightmare Fuel inducing new statue in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
  • The Edgar & Ellen book series features the town of Nod's Limbs. An incident regarding the statue erected to the town's founder is the reason the town (originally called Nod's Lands) bears its current name.
  • In the Eighth Doctor Adventures novel The Ancestor Cell, there are statues of the six founders of Time Lord society (Omega, Rassillon, the Other, Pandak, Aperion and Eutenoyar) in the six corners of the Panopticon. Until people start screwing around with time, so there are four statues (one of which is the Doctor) and eventually just one.
  • Craig Shaw Gardner's Novelization of Tim Burton's Batman (1989) has a scene, cut from the film at the script stage, in which the mayor unveils a statue he expects to be of John T. Gotham, but which is actually of the Joker
  • A Mage's Power: A statue of the Mother Dragon stands on top of her guild, the Dragon's Lair. Basilard "introduces" Eric to it when the latter joins as a novice. There are also statues of the first five captains in the courtyard.
  • Safehold: The main dome of the Temple is decorated with an enormous statue of Church's founder, Eric Langhorne.
  • You're Stepping on my Cloak and Dagger by Roger Hall. In the final days of the O.S.S, America's spy agency during World War II, Hall keeps a picture of Wild Bill Donovan behind his desk, with a sign attached saying OUR FOUNDER. Unfortunately Donovan is persona non grata now that the war is over, so the sign is replaced by one saying WANTED. When a member of the top brass sees the picture he walks out in a huff, Hall's office gets shut down the next day and he's returned to civilian life.
  • Whateley Universe: Whateley Academy has a statue of its founder, Noah Whateley. It seems to have come with the property, as for most of the school's history it was an unremarkable private boarding school until it ran into some sort of financial trouble and was bought out and turned into a... rather unusual specialist school, and the current administration are more interested in honouring famous alumni.
  • In The Space Merchants, Mitchell Courtenay, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, stands reverently for a few minutes in front of a bust of G. Washington Hill, patron saint of the advertising profession and apostle of the Advert-Overloaded Future.
  • Several appear in Wax and Wayne, mostly of the main characters of the previous trilogy. The most prominent one is of Vin and Elend, and is located at the park in the middle of the city.
    • Another important one appears in The Bands of Mourning in front of a Temple of Doom. It depicts the Sovereign, who saved his people from the Ice Death centuries ago. Wayne wonders what's the point of having a statue in the middle of nowhere if nobody's around to look at it, but concedes that it's much less likely to be covered in pigeon poop like the ones in Elendel. There is a good reason for it: the titular "Bands" are hidden on the statue, not inside the temple.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Our Miss Brooks: Mr. Conklin keeps a bust of Yodar Kritch, the estemeed founder of Madison High School, upon a pedestal in his office. It stands prominently beside the door through the first season. Yodar Kritch, whenever he's mentioned at Madison High School, is refererred to in an almost reverential air.
  • In a similar spirit, the statue of Jayne Cobb in Jaynestown on Firefly. Mal himself takes a very dim view on this trope, believing that anyone who's ever had a statue built of themselves was probably a sumbitch of some sorts.
  • Sougo Tokiwa / Kamen Rider Zi-O has a statue in the wastelands of 2068. It's a tribute to the start of his journey to become Ohma Zi-O, the overlord of time, who rules the future with an iron fist.
  • Legends of Tomorrow: The Legends visit the future and wind up at a tech company with a bust of their founder that Ray recognizes as himself, leading him to believe that he had unknowingly left behind a pregnant girlfriend in the present whose child built on his technology. When he confronts the current head of the company with this revelation, she reveals that their founder is Sidney Palmer, Ray's brother, who just happens to share a family resemblence.
  • The offices of Leverage Consulting & Associates have an oil painting of "Harland Leverage III" (actually an aged-up Nathan Ford, painted by Hardison). It also has a stash of emergency cash hidden in it.
  • In the second episode of Person of Interest, the very last shot is a pan over to a bust of Nathan Ingram's head - revealing both that he was the founder of IFT, and his status as a Posthumous Character.
  • Utopia Falls: Gaia is often invoked as the founded of New Babyl, with reverence ritually given to her such that she's basically worshiped, even invoked like God is.
  • In S 3 E 01 of The Mandalorian, Din returns to Navarro to see a statue of IG-11, the Assassin Droid that sacrificed itself to help fight off the Imperial Remnant in Season one. Some of it is actually made from its remaining parts.

    Myths & Religion 
  • A lot of Greek heroes were said to found famous cities.
    • Cadmus (the guy who "created" the Golden Fleece) supposedly founded Thebes, home of Oedipus' family, being Phoenician originally.
    • Perseus, Hercules, and Theseus were all said to pass by certain famous locations during their adventures, supposedly explaining their significance.
    • The Iliad: Aeneas's descendants went on to settle/found Britain, Rome, and Alba Longa, according to much later authors.
    • Telegonus, Odysseus' son by Circe, is said to have founded the Italian city of Tusculum.
  • The Franks, a Germanic tribe who conquered Gaul and renamed it France, were supposedly founded by "Francus", who by one account was the son of Hector, the hero of Troy.
  • Romulus is said to be the founder of the city of Rome (he's said to be descended from Aeneas above; since he was Raised by Wolves, one wonders how the genealogists figured this out).
    • The original myth claims that Romulus killed his brother Remus, but an alternate account is that Remus survived and went on to found the city of Reims in France. Fittingly, Reims was home to a tribe of the Belgae, who notoriously gave Rome a lot of trouble during their conquests.

    Puppet Shows 

  • In the radio version only of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, the 15-mile-high statue of Arthur Dent on the planet Brontitall. (He didn't found the society there, but he inadvertently inspired them to alter their entire way of life.)

    Tabletop Games 
  • GURPS IOU has a statue in the middle of the "Pent" marked "Our Founder". Said statue is humanoid-shaped, but worn down with age, and has hints of tentacles on the face. Oh, and testing showed it to be older than the universe.

    Theme Parks 
  • A well-known example is "Partners", the statue found in most Disneyland-style Disney Theme Parks of Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse.
    • A different statue of Walt and Mickey, called "Storytellers", was created for Disney California Adventure and depicts him as he first arrived in Los Angeles during The Roaring '20s. Oddly enough, the statue also appears at Tokyo DisneySea and Shanghai Disneyland.
    • Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom has an additional statue, "Sharing the Magic", showing Roy O. Disney (who spearheaded the park's construction after Walt's death) and Minnie Mouse sitting on a bench.
  • Similar to Disney, Hersheypark in Pennsylvania boasts a bronze statue of chocolate mogul Milton Hershey.
  • And over at Universal Studios Florida, the New York area of the park has a statue of Lew Wasserman, a long-time MCA/Universal executive who not only helped build the park, but also helped spearhead many of Universal's '70s/'80s blockbusters and essentially made the studio what it is today.

  • The Lego Town set 1592, Town Square Castle Scene, includes a statue commemorating a prominent citizen from the previous century — who was apparently one of the pre-1978 minifigures without movable arms or legs.

    Video Games 
  • ANNO: Mutationem: Skopp City holds a statue contribution of the founder of the Tithonus Group in celebration of their first generation gravity enhancers represented by levitating blocks.
  • Danganronpa: Hope's Peak Academy has a statue of its founder Izuru Kamukura to this effect. It conceals a hidden underground facility.
  • Epic Mickey has a replica of the Disneyland statue, but with Oswald the Lucky Rabbit instead of Mickey, as Oswald is Wasteland's ruler.
  • Shin Megami Tensei II: There's a statue of the protagonist of Shin Megami Tensei I.
  • Banjo-Kazooie has the evil villain Gruntilda, who rather likes to decorate things having to do with her with grand-scale depictions of herself. Her lair itself is shaped like her head, but the most Our Founder-esque example is the enormous statue of herself she keeps in a swamp, surrounded by a moat guarded by a giant piranha.
  • Super Mario Bros.: In many platformers, and in some spin-offs such as Mario Kart, the world is littered with stone depictions of Big Bad Bowser. Most of them are actually in his castle, though, along with big portraits of him and doors carved in his image.
  • The Legend of Zelda: The Goddess Hylia throughout the series. Mount Hylia, Hylia River, the Hylian people, and even the Kingdom of Hyrule itself are named after her; the Sheikah Shrines in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild where Link acquires new abilities are dedicated to her; and a statue of her can be found in the ruins of the Temple of Time.
  • Mother 3: New Pork City has a giant Porky statue which serves as a bonus boss.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • Sonic CD: Two examples are the Easter Egg at Wacky Workbench, and the giant statue at Stardust Speedway.
    • Sonic 3D Blast: Act 2 of Panic Puppet Zone revolves around climbing a path that surrounds an Eggman statue.
    • Sonic Heroes: Hang Castle. Sonic calls attention to an Eggman statue at a certain point in the stage. And then it flips over to show Metal Sonic.
    • Sonic Unleashed has Eggman finally build Eggmanland and one of the first things Sonic sees is a giant gold Eggman statue in front of the gate.
      Sonic: I'll never understand Eggman's tastes.
  • The Legend of Heroes: Trails: Dreichels Reise Arnor, the 73rd emperor of the Erebonian Empire, has a statue of him found at Dreichels Plaza in front of Valflame Palace.
  • Chrono Trigger: Medina Village was founded by Ozzie after Magus lost the Fiend-Human War in 600 AD. His descendant is the town's mayor, and after you defeat Magus, they dance around Ozzie's statue (because Magus is no longer quite so inspiring). Defeat Ozzie, however, and all of this vanishes — the fiends, without anyone to stir up antihuman resentment, founded the town themselves, and Ozzie's descendant is now a janitor. The change is reflected by the attitude of the townsfolk and the background music. Prior to defeating Ozzie, the townsfolk are hostile to outsiders, the music is dark and foreboding and creepy chanting fills the main square. After kicking Ozzie's ass, the townsfolk are friendly and the music is cheerful and upbeat sans chanting.
  • Kingdom Hearts χ: The very last shot of the story is of such a statue of Ephemer at Scala ad Caelum.
  • BioShock:
    • In BioShock Infinite, statues of Comstock can be found all around Columbia. A similar statue is also shown at the beginning of Rosalind Lutece (or Robert Lutece via a Tear), the scientist responsible for Columbia being able to float. Finkton has an enormous golden statue of Jeremiah Fink that's even bigger than some of Comstock's statues.
    • BioShock also opens with a large bust of Andrew Ryan above the Bathysphere that takes you to Rapture.
  • In The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, as the Nords of Skyrim venerate Talos, the apotheosis of the Emperor Tiber Septim, there are naturally numerous statues or shrines dedicated to him in several of the cities and dotted about the landscape.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy VII Remake: President ShinRa, the founder and CEO of The ShinRa Electric Power Company, has (what appears to be a solid gold) statue of himself in the company's headquarters. It's the centerpiece of a museum exhibit about himself.
    • Final Fantasy XIV:
      • Inside the Gold Saucer there's a golden statue of its founder, Godbert Manderville, wearing nothing but his smallclothes (which is his choice of attire, mind you). The man who runs the counter across the statue has this to say:
    Reymanaud: Sometimes I think the owner stationed me here just so I'd be forced to ever gaze upon the battle of the buldge waged beneath that shimmering statue's smallclothes.
    • In the upper levels of Ishgard, there are statues of King Thordan I and his Knights Twelve, who founded the city-state and protected the early settlers from the dragon Nidhogg at the start of the Dragonsong War.
  • Mass Effect 3: the final firefight in the Grissom Academy level involves a large statue of Jon Grissom.
  • Portal 2 has Cave Johnson, founder of Aperture Science. Rather than statues, he gets a couple of paintings depicting his slow descent into insanity.
  • Provost Willem fills the role in Bloodborne as the original founder of what would become the Healing Church, though he gets no recognition, as in his last years he was branded The Heretic and tossed back into the decaying ruins of the College of Byrgenwerth, staring into the depths alone in his wheelchair.
  • In the pig level of The Simpsons: Virtual Bart, just before the battle with the executives guarding the rest of the captive pigs, a framed picture of Krusty's head with the words, "OUR FOUNDER" on the plaque of the frame can be seen, as well as busts of Krusty's head.
  • Several examples in Overwatch:
    • The Dorado and Castilo maps each have a statue of Guillermo Portero, war hero and founder of LumeriCo who was born in Dorado. The reason for the statue on Castilo is unknown, as it's a different statue (and asset) but clearly the same man.
    • Overwatch's Swiss headquarters (eventually) had a giant statue of their leader, Strike Commander Jack Morrison. This is eventually a point of contention between Morrison and his rival Reyes, who had been passed over in favor of Morrison for leadership of Overwatch, in the "Uprising" comic: Reyes, whose covert ops department Blackwatch had been shut down by the UN, refused to help in the London crisis, even in planning a response (which he would be allowed to do under the UN sanction). When asked for help, he shrugged and said "[he's] not the one with the statue".
  • In Yakuza 0, after completing the Real Estate or Cabaret Club storyline, the player character (who brought the business Back from the Brink and freed the towns from the tyranny of its rival company) can purchase a golden statue of themselves for the building for 10 billion Yen. The others will immediately point out how gaudy it looks.
  • Though he arrived a few years after its official founding, Laurentia from Nexus Clash remembers larger-than-life adventuring pioneer Lucien Moreau this way. In reality, he was a Broken Ace whose expectations damaged the lives of all of his children, but Laurentia loved its mythology and he was useful enough as a heroic founding figure for him to get Shrouded in Myth with his actual problems permanently swept under the rug.
  • Divinity: Original Sin II: The first Waypoint is a statue of The Dreaded Braccus Rex, a Sorcerous Overlord who forged a tyrannical regime in Rivellon, now merely part of an ancient ruin.
    Ifan: Imagine having the gall to want a hundred generations gazing at your own face.
  • In Beyond A Steel Sky, Saviour Joey is being praised as the one freeing the city from the tyranny of LINC, and creating the current city as is. He has a museum dedicated to him, and a statue outside the museum.

    Web Comics 
  • Girl Genius: In the chapter "Jägermonsters to the Rescue", it turns out that in Agatha's two-year absence, Gil has topped Mechanicsburg's city walls with towering statues of Agatha. While not its founder, Agatha is the Heterodyne, and therefore the rightful ruler. Dimo describes them as being over 150 meters tall (for the non-metrically inclined, that's 500 feet). Agatha is... less than pleased.
    Agatha: I... I am going to kill him.
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • Redcloak has his statue in Azure City-slash-Gobbotopia City. It says "Our Leader" since he didn't found the city, just conquered it.
    • General Tarquin also has a statue of him lording over a beheaded enemy in Bleedingham.
  • Schlock Mercenary: After Kaff Tagon performs a Heroic Sacrifice and is then resurrected, he finds that his friends and family built a shrine, complete with statue, while he was gone.
    Kaff Tagon: My statue is holding a bomb, and doesn't have his helmet up.
    Karl Tagon: All I did was sign the invoice.
  • Sleepless Domain: Within the City, the mysterious Founder is a mythical figure believed to be the one who grants magical girls their powers. There's a statue of her overlooking the magical girl graveyard, and what appears to be another atop the golden dome-shaped building at the center of the City. Interestingly enough, however, her very existence appears to be protected by a Perception Filter to all but a few select individuals — even those who worship the Founder seem to believe that these statues simply represent a generic magical girl.

    Western Animation 
  • Amphibia: Wartwood has a statue of its founder in the center of town.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Jebediah Obadiah Zachariah Jedidiah Springfield (Hans Sprungfeld), whose statue embiggens Springfield's main square.
    • Shelbyville also has a statue of their founder, Shelbyville Manhattan, along with two women, possibly his cousins.
    • One episode has a hospital erect a bronze statue of Homer after he gave them a gigantic donation. What they didn't realize is that it was Mr. Burns making the donation through Homer.
    • "Bart Vs. Australia" has an Australian museum with a giant statue of a Snake lookalike with the caption "Our First Prime Minister" (a reference to Australia having been used as a penal colony).
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender
    • The town from the episode "Avatar Day" has a statue of Chin the Great/the Conquerer, although that also doubles as a memorial, as it's on the spot he died. Well, almost on the spot. He plummeted off a cliff, and you can't put a statue in thin air.
    • Avatar Kyoshi also had one in her hometown, interestingly... as she was the one who killed the aforementioned Chin, creating Kyoshi Island in the process.
  • The Legend of Korra:
    • Republic City's harbor has a giant statue of Aang, the Avatar from the previous series, who founded United Republic alongside Zuko.
    • The city's police headquarters has a life-sized statue of Toph, who played a part in the force's organization and training. She has another statue in the metal city of Zaofu. Interestingly enough, Toph herself didn't directly participate in the creation of Zaofu, but she did invent metalbending when she was only a child, a feat that made the city's creation possible.
    • Zuko also got a statue of himself in front of Central Station, complete with real fire streaming from his outstretched hand.
    • Cabbage Merchant gets a statue outside of Cabbage Corp.
    • Sokka has a statue on top of a tiered fountain in front of the Southern Water Tribe Cultural Center. It features him holding aloft his trusty boomerang.
    • By the time of Book Four, Asami has built a statue of Korra herself in the middle of Republic City's central park (now named "Avatar Korra Park"), as part of the revamp of the city's infrastructure. The fact that Asami and Korra end up as a couple by the end of the series puts that particular action in an interesting light.
  • Monster Buster Club: Addison Single, founder of Single Town. But that's no statue... It's Addison Single himself, who is in truth an alien Blob Monster, turned into stone.
  • The city wherein Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends is set has Elwood P. Dowd, in a subtle and clever nod to the premise of the show. Of course, Foster's Home itself has a bust of Madam Foster, which Bloo promptly... busts.
  • Whenever Mad Mod shows up in an episode of the Teen Titans animated series, you can be sure his likeness will soon get plastered over almost everything: busts, portraits, statues, posters, et cetera. He himself often (inexplicably) metamorphoses into strange alternate (and usually British pop culture-themed) designs, such as the Blue Meanie from Yellow Submarine and God from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. This counts as Our Founder because one time he used a grand-scale hypnotic trick to reclaim America in the name of Jolly Old England, proclaiming himself its first King.
  • Similar to the Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure example, Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi has an episode in which the girls are whisked away to the year 3000 and discover that all of society is now founded on their music. There is a skyscraper-sized statue of them in the futuristic city, featuring both of them back-to-back in a signature pose.
  • The sentient worms who infested Fry's bowel in the Futurama episode "Parasites Lost" have a statue of Fry in their city. Instead of "Our Founder", the pedestal read "The Known Universe".
  • In one episode of Aladdin: The Series, there is a celebration devoted to the founder of Agrabah, but no actual statue. It would have been a mistake if there was one, of course, but that's hardly new for Aladdin, so we'll put it down as coincidental accuracy.
  • ˇMucha Lucha!: At first, when the Headmistress spoke of the school's foundation, it seemed there was a painting of the founder but instead there was the man in person, always with a frame ahead of him and his name is "El Fundador". His signature move is founding. In fact, he made the school appear from his pocket to finish an adversary who intended to turn masked wrestling into a fad.
  • Phineas and Ferb: The Fireside Girls (at least the troop led by Isabella) seem to have a painting of their founder but she was just sitting in front of a framed window.
  • In Barbie and the Secret Door, Malucia has a golden statue of herself, and puts a foam hand on it to cheer about her inevitable triumph.
  • Steven Universe: In "Buddy's Book", Captain Dewey has a bronze statue erected in his honor.
  • Gravity Falls: Nathaniel Northwest founded the eponymous town, and Northwest family are celebrated by the town into the present day. It turns out he never founded the town. He was given the title of founder by the US government to cover up the existence of Quentin Trembley.
    • In the final episode Soos has made one of Stan for the Mystery Shack. Because it's so poorly made, kids run away screaming the second it's unveiled.
  • In Codename: Kids Next Door, when the moonbase is rebuilt at the end of Operation: Z.E.R.O., it includes an impressive statue of Numbuh Zero.
  • In the first episode of House of Mouse, Donald makes a few changes to the House while Mickey is away temporarily. At one point, he removes a framed picture of Mickey labeled "Our Founder" and replaces it with a giant gold statue of himself reading "Our Leader".
  • In Castlevania (2017), it was Leon Belmont who traveled from France to Wallachia to continue his hunt against Dracula and other creatures of the night. Leon's portrait hangs proudly in the stairwell leading to the Belmont Hold, the armory, library, and headquarters of the Belmont family.
  • Transformers: Robots in Disguise: A statue of Optimus Prime, who made it possible for Cybertronians to continue as a society, was constructed in his honor.
  • Arthur: "Elwood City Turns 100" features a rare instance of the statue's subject directly reacting to it: Elwood's founder Jacob Katzenellenbogan hates the thing for misspelling his name and making him look too fat (possibly deliberate touches, as the statue was donated by his "friends" Henry Ford and J.P. Morgan).

    Real Life 
  • Many universities in Real Life have Our Founder statues.
    • Harvard famously has the Statue of Three Lies which reads: "John Harvard, Founder, 1638". (The statue is attributed to Harvard, but as there was no physical record of what he looked like, it was instead based on a student, Sherman Hoar. Also, while Harvard certainly contributed heavily to the school with a large bequest and four hundred some odd books, it was actually founded two years beforehand, so if anything he's more like a founder than the founder.)
    • Averted with Texas A&M University. The statue that receives all the attention is Lawrence Sullivan Ross, the man attributed with saving the university.
    • Averted with the University of Maryland. The best-known statue on campus (apart from that of the mascot) is of one of the school's most famous alumni.
    • Cornell University has one that is across a quad from a statue of the first president. A local legend says that if a virgin walks between them, the two statues will stand up, walk across the quad, and shake hands to congratulate each other on the university's chastity. They have yet to get out of their seats. That's a joke variant on the traditional story, which is that they shake at midnight on the anniversary of the university's founding (or sometimes some other significant date). Footprints are painted on the sidewalk between them.
    • The founder of University College London, Jeremy Bentham, had his body mummified and donated to the school so they could save on the expense of a statue to commemorate him. The head is a waxwork as the mummification job left the original looking rather ghoulish and because drunk students kept 'kidnapping' it. There used to be a tradition of wheeling it into faculty meetings and making a note on the minutes that Bentham attended but didn't vote on any motions.
  • Many countries do this for national heroes; Dublin's O'Connell Street has statues of Daniel O'Connell and Charles Stewart Parnell at each end.
  • Apparently, every town and city in Britain was founded by either Queen Victoria, King Edward VII, or both.
  • Queen Victoria is a popular for statues in Canada. Similiarly, so is Canada's first Prime Minister, Sir John Alexander Macdonald.
  • William Penn looks down on Philadelphia from an impressive statue atop City Hall, at the center of the city's skyline. A several-year run of failure for Philadelphia's sports teams was blamed on One Liberty Plaza surpassing it in height in 1987 (there had previously been a gentlemen's agreement that no building in the city would be taller than City Hall); perhaps it's a coincidence that when a small figurine of Penn was put on top of Comcast Center when it opened in 2007, the new tallest building in the city, the Phillies won the World Series about a year later.
  • McDonald's for years had brass plaques at the entrances with "Our Founder, Ray Kroc"; the McDonald brothers themselves getting short, if any mention. Wendy's does something similar with a photograph of their founder, Dave Thomas, in some promotional materials, as well as in framed posters all over any given Wendy's location.
    • Speaking of Dave Thomas, he first started appearing in commercials for the chain in 1981, but he didn't become the company's main commercial spokesperson until 1989. He went on to appear in more than 800 Wendy's commercials, including every single one that aired in the 1990s, filming his last commercial shortly before his death in 2002.
  • Papa John's Pizza followed suit, using the company's founder John Schnatter as its main commercial spokesperson for most of the 2010s until he was forced out in 2018 after racial comments he had made were revealed.
  • Somewhere in Apple, Inc. headquarters is a framed Apple I motherboard with the caption "OUR FOUNDER".
  • Possibly the most infamous example, the statue of Saddam Hussein that was pushed over.
  • These are everywhere in North Korea. What's more, they got so good at it they have a minor industry based around exporting such patriotic statues (Senegal took them up on one).
  • Atatürk is all over Turkey, apparently not just the founder of the country but of just about every local establishment and tradition. He did change many things in Turkey mightily, among them constructing a modern, staunchly secular and Western-Oriented republic out of a recessive and staunchly Muslim Vestigial Empire, as well as introducing tea to a previously coffee-crazy nation that had just lost its Arab possessions. One of the things that make current leader Erdogan controversial is his breaking with some traditions claimed to be based on Atatürk, such as blurring the line between Islam and national politics.
  • Mahatma Gandhi's face is the only Indian leader that adorns India's currency and notes, his birthday is also a National Holiday in India.
  • George Washington provides the name of D.C.'s capital and has a military rank of permanent superiority that can never be surpassed.
  • The Hershey School in Hershey, Pennsylvania has one of Milton Hershey in its rotunda.
  • One can hardly go anywhere in Kingston, Ontario without being reminded that Sir John A. Macdonald (Canada's first Prime Minister) grew up there and got his political start there. Among other things, there's a Sir John A. Macdonald Boulevard, a restaurant called Sir John's Public House, Sir John A Macdonald Public School, a Sir John A Macdonald Hall at Queen's University, and a life-size statue of him in City Park.
  • The largest statue of Otto von Bismarck is located near the Port of Hamburg. During the German Kaiserreich (1871–1918), which Bismarck helped found, Bismarck was very close to everywhere, especially after his death in 1898. Every major city has a street or square named for him and there are statues of him in many places as well. Even herring has been named for him, because he supposedly once said he liked its taste and German fishers were so grateful, they named one type of preparing it after him.
  • Nicaragua was governed between 1979 and 1990 by a party called the "Sandinistas" named after nationalist revolutionary Augusto C. Sandino, who fought against a US occupation of his country in the 1930s and died at the hands of the dictator whose son the Sandinistas toppled four decades later. While in power, the Sandinistas put Sandino on currency, their campaign material, and countless Che-style T-shirts. When they were voted out in 1990, they put a silhouette of him on top of one of the highest mountains in the capital, Managua, incidentally the site of the former presidential palace and not too far from where Sandino was assassinated. When the Sandinistas returned to power in 2006, the Sandino imagery came back, though much less pronounced. Only one banknote (and none of the coins) today has any relation to him, and it doesn't bear his image but rather a picture of the hut he was born in. Students still have to learn the details of his life and he remains the Nicaraguan national hero.
  • Much like Atatürk, Lenin used to be everywhere not just as the icon of Soviet Union, but also an icon of the socialist revolution worldwide. The Soviet collapse caused a significant amount of these statues to be taken out as part of the Decommunization process in former Eastern Bloc countries; however, many still remain in Russia and Belarus where even some new ones have been erected.note  Until 2015, Ukraine also had thousands of Lenin statues, but only two remain after stricter decommunization laws were passed. Both in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. Though not all the statues were destroyed, some were instead altered to depict other subjects.
  • Statues of Sun Yat-sen are, oddly enough, found in both the People's Republic of China and the Taiwan (Republic of China). Despite the vast ideological and geopolitical divergence between the two governments that claim to be the legitimate rulers of China, both consider Sun to be their founder on account of having led the rebellion that ended the Qing dynasty. In mainland China he's known as "Forerunner of the Revolution" and in Taiwan he's "Father of the Nation". Naturally, the PRC also has has statues everywhere of its founder Mao Zedong and the Taiwan has lots of statues of ROC president Chiang Kai-shek. Both claimed to be the rightful successor to Sun Yat-sen and to be creating the version of "China" he intended.
  • The Roman Colosseum was named for the 98-foot bronze statue Nero made of himself, and which later emperors converted into a statue of the god Sol and moved next to their new stadium.
  • Oslo has two statues of its "founder", Christian IV "Quarter" (the area was already a population center, but Christian planned and rebuilt it properly across the river and renamed the city Christiania after a fire). The first is in Stortorvet, depicting Christian pointing at the ground where he intends to rebuild the city, and the second is in Christian's Torv, depicting just his hand pointing at the ground where he supposedly declared it.

Alternative Title(s): Statue Of The Founder