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"Her son was tall and proud, with Drogo’s copper skin and her own silver-gold hair, and violet eyes shaped like almonds."

When two or more fictional characters reproduce, a logical next step for many creators is to concoct an appearance for the offspring. One method for reflecting the relationship between the child and their parents is for the creator to make the child resemble both of its parents simultaneously: their body types, hair styles, facial features, and other physical characteristics are patched together to create the child's appearance.

For example, Alice and Bob have a daughter who inherits her mother's freckles and exact hair style, along with her father's eye colour and big feet. Other examples might include a child that has two-toned hair or heterochromia, so that both parents' most recognisable characteristics are represented simultaneously.

As a Sub-Trope of All Genes Are Codominant, real-life genetics may take a back-seat to LEGO Genetics and Artistic License – Biology.


Compare Gender Equals Breed, where the child looks like the parent whose gender it shares, and Strong Family Resemblance, where the child's appearance is based on just one parent.

Contrast Random Species Offspring, where the offspring is a different species altogether from their parents, and Hollywood Genetics, where the offspring ends up with physical traits that neither parent has.

See Superpowerful Genetics for superpower heredity, and Half-Human Hybrid when one of the parents isn't human (and the hybrid tends to exhibit both traits of the parents). Fan-Created Offspring frequently strongly take after both parents.


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Other examples:

    open/close all folders 

  • An animated advert for a brand of fabric conditioner in Britain is literally this — a family depicted as being made up of sewn patchwork samples from lots of different fabrics, with the kids combining aspects of both parents' ragwork skins.
  • In the Klondike bar commercial "Who's Your Daddy?", a pair of Klondike Original bars have a baby who is a Klondike Krunch bar, who turns out to be the result of the wife cheating on her husband with a Krunch candy bar.

    Anime & Manga 
  • In Hanamaru Kindergarten, Sakura has blonde hair and her husband has brown hair; their daughter Anzu's hair is blonde in the front and brown in the back.
  • Bizarre canon example from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha: Vivio, adopted daughter of Fate and Nanoha, looks like a perfect mix of her mothers' features, especially the face. Her blond hair is darker than Fate's but her eyes are red and green, while Nanoha is indigo. Her hairstyle is also based on Nanoha's. Even stranger is that she's not genetically related to either of them and is in fact a clone of a long dead ruler.
  • Naruto:
    • During an interview, the author, Masashi Kishimoto said that a child born between a Hyuga and a Uchiha would have a Sharingan in one eye, and a Byakugan in the other.
    • Naruto's canonical children, Boruto and Himawari, are a mix of their parents. Himawari in particular has her mother's eyes and looks but her father's whiskers.
  • Hiro Mashima ended up running into a downplayed version of this when he drew the What If? designs for two pairings' potential kids in Fairy Tail.note  Lucy and Natsu's kid has the standard feminine eyes for girls and Lucy's face shape, but her outfit and hairstyle makes her look like an earlier drawing of a Rule 63 Natsu. Gray and Juvia's kid has Gray's hair color, but Juvia's fashion sense. His eyes look like a combination of his parents', though. The kids were eventually canonized in 100 Years the children of the Edolas version of Natsu/Lucy and Gray/Juvia.
  • In My Hero Academia, the Quirks in Todoroki's family seem to be tied to hair color—his mother is An Ice Person with white hair, his father is a literal Fiery Redhead. Todoroki can produce each power from opposite sides of his body, so, sure enough, he has Multicolored Hair. Two of his siblings have white hair flecked with bits of red, implying that they got more ice than fire. The eldest sibling, Touya, was born with his father’s red hair, but his hair gradually turned to his mother’s pure white by the time he was 13; while he had a stronger variation of his father’s quirk, he inherited his mother’s constitution, meaning his ability to handle his flames was very limited.

    Comic Books 

    Comic Strips 
  • The Zbeng! comics have a series of books centering on the biographies and possible future of individual characters. A section present in each of the books is the character's potential children with other characters — well, except for the book about Zaafani, where the section deals with the consequences of the males seeing her naked instead. No amount of Brain Bleach can handle that.

    Films — Animation 
  • In Shrek, Dragon and Donkey fall in love. Shrek 2 introduces their children, the dronkeys.
  • How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World ends with Babies Ever After for both the main human couple of Hiccup and Astrid and the main dragon couple of Toothless and the Light Fury, and both of them have this:
    • The son of Hiccup and Astrid looks exactly like the child version of Hiccup as seen in the flashbacks during the film, but with Astrid's blond hair. Conversely, their daughter looks very much like a child version of Astrid, but with Hiccup's reddish-brown hair.
    • The three Night Fury—Light Fury babies (called "Night Lights") all sport black and white markings; two have Toothless's green eyes and one has the Light Fury's blue ones.
  • In The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea, Melody looks like an ideal blend of her parents: she has Ariel's facial features and Eric's thick eyebrows and color scheme.
  • In The Good Dinosaur, protagonist Arlo takes his appearance from both his mother and father.

    Films — Live-Action 

  • In the A Song of Ice and Fire books, Daenerys envisions a grown-up Rhaego (whose name alone is a combination of her older brother "Rhaegar" and "Drogo") as her husband Khal Drogo with Targaryen hair and eyes.
  • Harry Potter is frequently described as looking exactly like his father, but with his mother's eye color.
  • This occasionally pops up in Warrior Cats even though it's genetically incorrect for cats most of the time.
  • This is why Sunny from Wings of Fire looks so weird compared to other SandWings. She's half NightWing. She looks like a SandWing but lacks their scorpion-like tail, has a NightWing build, and has the scale pattern of a NightWing.
  • Re:Zero's Rem IF timeline has Subaru Natsuki's children with Rem look exactly like their parents, but with swapped hair colors. His son is blue haired like Rem but has his father's sharp eyes and hair style when he was a young man, but his daughter Spica is black haired with her mother's face.
  • The Last Dogs: Journey's End, the fourth and final book in the series, features Rocky and Gizmo's four puppies: Milo, Blue, Lola, and Chloe. They're a litter of Dorkies (Dachshund/Yorkshire Terrier mix), and while they have black-and-tan fur like both of their parents, they have the same wiry fur as their mother Gizmo and the long body and short legs of their father Rocky.
  • A Twisted Tale: Snow White is described as having her father's eyes and her mother's face.
  • Two different variants show up in The Stormlight Archive:
    • Several of the human ethnicities in this setting have signature hair colors, which inherit fractionally. For example, one of the main characters is an Alethi (black hair), who married an Iriali (metallic gold), and their children have mixed gold and black hair.
    • If a lighteyes marries (or more likely, has an affair with) a darkeyes, the child can have one eye of each color. In the Vorin kingdoms, where eye color defines social status, these half-eyes exist in a very odd social position.
  • In Twilight, the daughter of Edward and Bella is said to have features of both her parents; in particular she has Edward's reddish-brown hair and Bella's brown eyes. Edward remarks that he's glad Renesmee has Bella's eyes, as otherwise they would've been lost because Bella's eyes turned red then gold after she became a vampire.
  • The children's book Pussy Owl: Superbeast by Brigid Brophy is about the offspring of the Owl and the Pussycat from the poem of the same name. Pussy Owl has an owl's body and wings, but a cat's head, back legs and tail. He claims to be a unique species: Strix felix.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Late Night with Conan O'Brien had a recurring bit called "If They Mated," in which images of a celebrity couple were combined into Nightmare Fuel. (Often by the end of a segment, they would subvert this by putting ridiculous theoretical couples together and getting silly non-patchwork results — Conan himself plus Scooby-Doo's Daphne, whom he claimed he had a crush on as a kid, resulted in SpongeBob SquarePants.)

    Tabletop Games 
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: Shrit is the child of Avance and Emilia. Shrit's hair is a layered combination of Avance and Emilia (white and red, respectively), and has one blue eye (like Avance) and one red eye (like Emilia). He also has the ability to use Rituals like his parents. This makes sense, as Avance and Emilia were last seen in the conclusion of the Duel Terminal storyline (seen in "Sacred Serpent's Wake"), looking off into the distance together as the last survivors of the war. The duo are also featured on several other "Necloth" cards, implying that the Necloth archetype represents the pair's new family after some time has passed.

  • One of the Tamagotchi virtual pet toys, specifically the Tamagotchi m!x, uses this as its primary gimmick (this feature is extended to the later Tamagotchi On as well). If you marry your Tamagotchi with another, it will have a child that has a random mix of features from both of its parents (so, for example, it could have the body of its mother and the facial features of its father).

    Video Games 
  • The Story of Seasons games first did this in Animal Parade. The children would inherit the player character's facial structure, but have the spouse's hair- and eye-color. The games since have zig-zagged in either using this trope (Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns) or averting it by having the child resemble the original appearance of the player character (A New Beginning).
  • Rune Factory Oceans plays with this by having the child merely inherit the spouse's hair- and eye-color, but otherwise having their own design. Likely because it was the first Rune Factory game to not use portraits for characters, but models.
  • The Sims: Toddler, Child, and Teen Sims can be generated in Create-A-Sim with a combination of their parents' traits, rerolling them if you don't like their appearance. With babies who are generated via WooHoo, though, you take what you're given.
  • Tomodachi Life: If two married Miis have a baby, their child will have a mixture of the parents' facial features, skin and hair, even the colors (ie: the mother's eyes, the father's hair color and mouth, etc.). This could extend to makeup features and old grey hair, and it's possible for the baby to get the elements of the opposite gender.
  • Dragon Quest V has this. Depending on which of the 2 (3 in the Nintendo DS version) girls the main character marries, the kids will have the mother's hair colour, blue eyes (which depending on depiction all 4 share) and their father's talents and ambitions.
  • Fire Emblem:
    • In Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy War, Seliph basically has his mother's face and his father's hair. His half-sister Julia downplays this, being a mix of her mother and her half-uncle Azel.
    • Downplayed with the second generation characters from Fire Emblem Awakening. Each one of them is tied to a particular first generation mother, but inherit their hair color from their father. And while some of them resemble their mother, this isn't universally true.
    • The above is reversed for Fire Emblem Fates, with the second generation characters now having a fixed father and inheriting their hair color from their mother. Once again, the degree of resemblance between parent and child varies greatly, with one major exception: Subaki's daughter Caeldori is an Expy of—and dead ringer for—Cordelia of Awakening. In the Revelation route, where it's possible to have inter-kingdom marriages between Hoshido and Nohr, Caeldori can be mothered by Selena, who is actually Severa, Cordelia's daughter. This makes Caeldori look exactly like Cordelia; the dialogue in Caeldori's Support conversations with her mother even changes to have Selena comment on the similarity. Furthermore, the game implies Caeldori to be a (re)incarnation of Cordelia, elevating Identical Granddaughter into My Own Grandma. This is what happens when the previous game establishes it's possible to hop across time and space.
  • In Hades, the very first thing Achilles's codex notes about Zagreus is that "any questions of his parentage are soon resolved" just by looking at him, and it's not wrong. Zagreus is such an even mix of his parents (his father's coloring, his mother's features and hairstyle) that he even winds up with each of their eyes instead of inheriting a pair from one. This is partly why Hades was so adamant about keeping the Olympians from learning of him—it's much more difficult to pretend Persephone never set foot in the Underworld when its crown prince is so clearly her son as much as his own.

    Web Animation 
  • RWBY:
    • Yang Xiao Long is a physical mix-and-match of her mother and father's (centre-right and centre-left) features, though she seems to take a bit more after her mom. She has Raven's long voluminous hair, facial structure and complexion, and Taiyang's blonde hair colour and idiot lock. Her eyes are lilac, a mix of her father's light blue and her mother's deep red.
    • Downplayed with Ruby. She has her mother Summer's skin tone, hair color, and eye color, but she also inherited her father Taiyang's Idiot Hair.
    • Winter downplays this, predominantly taking after her mother but having her father's dark eyebrows.
  • Played for Laughs in SUPER MARIO - AFTER THE GAME. Mario and Peach's daughter has Peach's blonde hair and Mario's black mustache.

  • The Order of the Stick:
    • Elan inherited his outlook (and alignment) from his mother and his love of the dramatic from his father. His Evil Twin Nale gets his outlook from his father and his love of the needlessly complicated from his mother. They both inherited their father's hairstyle and mother's hair color.
    • Haley has her mother's hairstyle and her father's hair color.
    • Pompey's a half-elf, although his parents aren't seen, he has one elf ear and one human ear. In his case, it's pure Rule of Funny.
  • The parents in Roomies! and Dumbing of Age, as described in Willis's notes for Joyce's parents character design:
    You can probably see in them the general design philosophy of how I draw parents. They're almost patient zero for that, being designed second only after Danny's parents some time in 1998. Mr. Brown gets Joyce's eyes and headshape and Mrs. Brown gets Joyce's nose and slightly shorter version of her daughter’s hair (and a more round physique that Joyce is likely to take on as she gets on in years). I always find it helps to give the most distinctive physical characteristics to the opposite-sexed parent and then throw all the other features at the other parent — and few characteristics are more distinctive than Joyce's big blue eyes. I don't want moms to always look like aged-up daughters and dads to always look like aged-up sons. They can be sometimes, though, for lulz.
  • Made patently absurd in Brawl in the Family, where Kirby's dream about his and Jigglypuff's marriage comes complete with kids, all of which are mishmashes of Kirby and Jigglypuff. Right down to the appetite, apparently.
  • In El Goonish Shive, the use of Uryuom eggs by two or more non-Uryuoms always results in offspring who, not only look like this by default, also have a Shapeshifting ability to resemble any of their parents.
  • In Kevin & Kell, baby Turvy mostly looks like bat father Fenton, but has hedgehog mother Lindesfarne's quills.

    Western Animation 
  • The title character of Humf is a purple furry thing. His parents are a red furry thing and a blue furry thing. Apparently, furry thing genes mix in the same way as paint.
  • In the SpongeBob SquarePants episode "Just One Bite," Squidward dreams that he marries a Krabby Patty (It Makes Sense in Context). Their kid looks like a Krabby Patty with six tentacles.
  • On Gargoyles, Elisa explicitly notes that Angela looks like Demona, but with Goliath's skin and hair color. A few episodes later is revealed that she is, in fact, their biological daughter.
  • In Quack-Quack's Imagine Spot, Kaeloo and Mr. Cat's potential offspring are orange, whiskered tadpoles.
    • Discussed in Episode 148. Stumpy and Mr. Cat wonder what kind of babies Quack Quack (a duck) and Eugly (a rabbit) would have if they got married. They then imagine the results to be freaky hybrids with duck bills and rabbit teeth.
  • In Adventure Time, Jake and Lady Rainicorn eventually have a litter of rainicorn pups that have the same powers as their parents.
  • Hey Arnold!: Arnold's parents are shown to be a blond-haired father with a normal shaped head, and a red haired mom with an oblong shaped head and round nose. This is a justified case, since blond hair is dominant over red.
  • The Distant Finale of OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes shows us two teenagers working at Gar's. One of them has Rad's skin color and Enid's hair and emphasis on physical attacks, while the other has Enid's skin tone and Rad's hair and telekinetic powers. According to Word of God, their parentage was meant to be vague, so it's unknown if Rad and Enid actually did hook up and have kids, or if one of them acted as a surrogate for the other.
  • The Distant Finale for My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic shows this trope in action with Li'l Cheese, son of Pinkie Pie and Cheese Sandwich. His eyes are green like his father and has the pink hair of his mother. Although his coat is yellow, a color neither of his parents share, it is a "cheesy" color similar to the orange on Cheese Sandwich. Even his cutie mark is a fusion of the two: it's a slice of cheese pie, combining his dad's accordion-like grilled cheese motif and his mom's family name.
  • At the end of Channel Chasers, we are introduced to Tammy and Tommy Turner, Timmy's future kids. Tommy physically resembles Timmy in every way except for his hair (which is black), while Tammy resembles both Trixie and Tootie (her glasses and plaid skirt resemble Tootie's, while her hair style and colour style resemble Trixie's) except for her brown hair.
  • The Owl House: Amity's face is practically identical to her mother's when she was a teenager and even now they still have a pretty Strong Family Resemblance. That said, Amity's natural hair color, eye color, and talent for abomination magic all come from her father.


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