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Prop Recycling

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"I actually recognize this wall. It's been redressed a number of times, most recently for a scene in the Enterprise series finale 'These are the Voyages...', but it's also been used as a backdrop on a Son'a ship in Insurrection... This wall, I think, deserves an Emmy for withstanding so much crap."

The Hollywood version of "Waste Not, Want Not". When elaborate sets, costumes or props are made for one production, they may turn up again and again in other productions that may need elaborate props but don't have the budget to design and build their own.

The prop may be altered slightly by repainting it or adding or removing widgets but it usually remains recognizable, especially if the original production was well known. While an understandable cost-saving measure, there's something about the practice that just screams "low budget".

Can overlap with Whole Costume Reference if the costume is recycled from an earlier work. If it's a real item, then it's Off-the-Shelf FX. If it's everything in the room, it's a Recycled Set. For when video games reuse "models" of the polygonal kind in the same work, see You ALL Look Familiar and New Work, Recycled Graphics. Compare Stock Footage, Palette Swap and California Doubling.


This is utterly ubiquitous in live theatre, so a section for this would be hopelessly long, and utterly pointless. Just take it as a given that live theatre companies save and re-use everything.


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  • The Batman OnStar Commercials reused the same Batmobile from Batman (1989) and Batman Returns, as well as a repainted version of the main Batsuit from Batman & Robin.
  • For additional set dressage, Dodgey Donut (his action figure exclusive variant) and Greaseburger from The Grossery Gang were placed in the background of the first Flush Force commercial. This is besides the fact the toylines are from two entirely different companies and the two Grossery Gang figures were featured with multiple Flushies, making their appearance practically unneeded.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • The folks at Pixar are fond of reusing props, sets, even whole characters from their previous movies (and even from their upcoming ones), usually as a Shout-Out, as well as for practical measures. The most famous example is the Pizza Planet delivery truck from Toy Story, which has found its way into almost every film. Other popular props include the yellow ball with the blue stripe and red star from Luxo Jr., as well as both Luxo lamps from the same short.
    • A good example of recycling in Pixar productions is Boundin'. As mentioned in the audio commentary, the dancing fishes are retooled versions of Gurgle from Finding Nemo, the burrowing owl and the moles use the same base model, the shearer's car is Lizzie from the then still unreleased Cars and the arm that picks the lamb to shear him is the one of the dentist from Finding Nemo.
    • The Nightmare Sequence at the beginning of Inside Out uses altered versions of Remy and Queen Elinor's bear form as the zombie mouse and the pizza delivery bear.
    • In Coco, they used one of Hank's tentacles from Finding Dory as a base for Dante the dog's tongue.
  • 101 Dalmatians:
    • Two vehicles from this movie actually made a reappearance in The Aristocats: The Baduns' truck (as a milk truck the cats ride in at one point while heading back to Paris) and the moving van (as the truck that comes to pick up Edgar and take him to Timbuktu at the end of the film). These were actual physical props, painted white with "outlines" drawn on the edges, that were filmed in front of white backgrounds and photocopied onto the cels in a manner similar to Rotoscoping.
    • Cruella de Vil's car also made a brief cameo near the beginning of The Rescuers as the car Madame Medusa used to drive to the airport. Possibly an artifact of an early script where Medusa was Cruella until they rewrote the story to have a new villain.
  • Ralph Breaks the Internet reuses baby Moana's model from Moana. People noticed it as soon as the first trailer was released and joked about it, to the point that when the movie came out they actually went and named the little girl "Mo".note 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Robby the Robot. Originally created for the 1956 film Forbidden Planet, Robby continued to be reused in many movie and TV productions up to the present day (although since the 1960s a lightweight replica has been used). Its two appearances in Lost in Space are particularly ironic in that Robby and Robot B-9 were both designed by Robert Kinoshita. Robby is so memorable that it is less a prop and more of an actual character. Along with all the sci-fi shows he turns up in, Robby also appears in, of all things, on a couple of NBC shows. In the family sitcom Hazel, Robby appear's in a dream sequence as Hazel's robotic replacement. Robby would later appear on one of the NBC era Columbo episodes as a robot built by a child genius at a think tank and even as a hotdog vendor in the animated feature Heavy Metal. He's even listed on IMDB as an actual actor.
  • The uniforms from Forbidden Planet were used in the sci-fi B-Movie Queen of Outer Space.
  • The Queen Anne's Revenge in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides was built atop the ship used for the Black Pearl in the previous films.
  • The Matrix used several sets from Dark City (filmed at the same Sydney studio a few months before, and exploring some similar themes), most notably the roof-case from the teaser chase scene and the spiral staircase in the Lafayette Hotel.
  • Airplane II: The Sequel had the thing with lights that go back and forth. Seen in the background in some Sci-Fi series. Was also in an episode of Star Trek: Enterprise. There is a site detailing its numerous appearances.
  • Star Wars:
    • A Tatooine prop, the krayt dragon skeleton, while not re-used in filming was left there; the winds periodically bury and uncover the thing. Rumor has it that a scientist at one point mistakenly reported the thing as a newly discovered dinosaur. One can only imagine his reaction when he learned what it actually was. The prop was reportedly a repurpose of a dinosaur skeleton originally made for the Disney movie One of Our Dinosaurs is Missing
    • IG-88's head was originally used as a drink dispenser in Ep. IV.
    • Bossk's suit in The Empire Strikes Back was originally created for a human pilot in the Doctor Who story "The Tenth Planet".
    • Darth Vader's lightsaber in Return of the Jedi is a repainted prop of Luke's saber from the previous two movies (the two props were similar, but not identical, in shape). Apparently the original prop of Vader's lightsaber was stolen.
    • Palpatine's Xyston-class Star Destroyers in The Rise of Skywalker are a very obvious re-use of Rogue One's CGI model for the Imperial-I-class. The only differences are the size (the Xyston is scaled up, proportionally, by fifty percent), a few red stripes, and a planet-killing Wave-Motion Gun added to the belly.
  • Mel Brooks reused Kenneth Strickfaden's original electrical equipment from the 1931 version of Frankenstein in his Affectionate Parody, Young Frankenstein. This was done not to save money but as an homage to the original film.
  • The multiwheeled Landmaster vehicle from Damnation Alley reappeared in various movies and TV episodes. (It almost had a better career than the human star Jan-Michael Vincent.)
  • The gate featured in the original King Kong saw multiple uses in other movies, starting with Merian C. Cooper's next movie She, ultimately being used as kindling in burning of Atlanta scene in Gone with the Wind. (It was the burning wall that narrowly avoided crushing Rhett and Scarlett in a passing wagon.)
  • Beneath the Planet of the Apes reused at least two sets from Hello, Dolly.
  • Monty Python's Life of Brian reused the sets from Franco Zefferelli's Jesus of Nazareth.
  • Alien:
    • The sets to Axis chemical factory in Batman (1989) were from Aliens.
    • Another reused prop from Alien is a console in the Doctor Who episode "Earthshock".
    • The griddle-like corridor panels, which were originally shipping pallets, have shown up in Doctor Who, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Blake's 7 and Red Dwarf at least, and probably in various other productions. They are heavily used in the original Star Wars movies, as floors and ceilings aboard the Death Star, the Millennium Falcon, Vader's Star Destroyer, Cloud City, the Endor Bunker and many other places.
  • Defied by 2001: A Space Odyssey: all the original props were unavailable for the sequel 2010: The Year We Make Contact because Stanley Kubrick deliberately destroyed them all, along with any design notes, after filming was completed specifically to avert this trope. The prop department for 2010 had no choice but to make replicas of everything from scratch based on examining what was visible in the film. In spite of which, the audio commentary for The Phantom Menace claims that one of the original Discovery EVA pods can be seen in Watto's scrapyard on Tatooine. More likely it's the EVA pod built for 2010.
  • Roger Corman's The St. Valentine's Day Massacre re-used sets from Hello, Dolly! and The Sound of Music. Corman actually had the resources of a studio behind him, and probably could have built new sets, but stuck to cost-saving measures out of habit.
  • The Minigun in Predator was reused in Terminator 2: Judgment Day. While all guns are prone to reuse in film, miniguns in particular are very prone to it due to their rarity in the civilian market. Every single one in the civilian market has made a movie or TV appearance at some point.
  • Back to the Future Part II reused several cars from other "futuristic" movies in its 2015 set.
  • The Phantom of the Opera:
  • Just Imagine, a sci-fi musical from the 1930s, had a lavish set costing a quarter million Depression-era dollars, but flopped in the theaters. Producers recouped some of their money by reusing Stock Footage of the cityscape in the Universal film serials Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers, while Z-4's Rocket Plane was recycled as Zarkov's rocketship.
  • The colored "Michelin Man" spacesuits from Destination Moon were later used in cheaper sci-fi efforts like Flight to Mars, the TV series Space Patrol, and the spoof Amazon Women on the Moon. The last film also re-used the Loch Ness Monster puppet from The Loch Ness Horror in one of its sketches.
  • The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. The original Marvin the Paranoid Android from the TV series was reused in a crowd scene in the 2006 movie as a Mythology Gag. Movie!Arthur notices and does a clearly visible double-take.
  • Miho's swords from Sin City were the Crazy 88's from Kill Bill. Quentin Tarantino, who special guest directed a segment in the film, had them in his garage and loaned them to the production.
  • Ghostbusters:
  • In Mulholland Dr., when Betty Elms arrives at the movie studio for her audition, the car from Sunset Boulevard is parked at the entrance.
  • Steve Martin's dentist instruments from Little Shop of Horrors were reused as gynecological tools in Dead Ringers, then surgical instruments for the Joker in Tim Burton's Batman (1989).
  • The monster penis from Tromeo and Juliet is reused in Citizen Toxie: The Toxic Avenger IV.
  • The armor from Starship Troopers gets around a lot...
  • Harry Potter:
    • The Room of Requirement in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows recycles every set and prop from the previous movies (for instance, the giant chess pieces from the first, Snape's storage from the fourth, and the wedding decorations from part 1 of the seventh).
    • CGI example: Buckbeak's wings are re-used as the wings of the flying horses pulling the Beauxbatons carriage.
    • Speaking of Harry Potter, sections of the Diagon Alley set were redressed and rearranged for the barricade scenes in Les Misérables (2012).
  • The teddy bear Jack Ryan gets for his daughter at the end of The Hunt for Red October (credited as Stanley) is the same teddy bear John McClane was bringing for his kids in the first Die Hard film. Both films were directed by John McTiernan.
  • Galaxina features the Batmobile from the Adam West TV series.
  • The Burning of Atlanta in Gone with the Wind was actually the Burning of Many Old Set Pieces on The Backlot That Were Due to Be Demolished Anyway.
  • After Gone with the Wind almost bankrupted the studios where it was filmed, the costumes and props were re-used for Pride and Prejudice (1940). Never mind the fact that the two novels are set about 70 years apart (one circa 1790s, one in the 1860s and 70s), and on different continents, with radically different fashions, it was all the olden days, wasn't it?
  • The external and interior sets from Das Boot have been reused:
    • Steven Spielberg rented the exterior set for Raiders of the Lost Ark; someone forgot to tell the German production crew, leading to a bit of panic when they found it was missing.
    • The interior set was used for the World War I submarine U-20 in the TV movie Lusitania: Murder on the Atlantic. Interestingly, in real life, the Type VIIC of World War II and Type U-19 of World War I had similar internal dimensions.
  • In the Doris Day film Its A Great Feeling, Patricia Neal has a cameo As Herself, and she is wearing the ermine-trimmed Little Black Dress from the film of The Fountainhead (as she just came from the set of that movie to film this scene).
  • Kathy's car in Singin' in the Rain was previously Andy Hardy's car. Don Lockwood's mansion is filled with furniture from Flesh and the Devil.
  • The alien slavers' ships in Robinson Crusoe on Mars are clearly the Martian tripods from the better-known 1953 film The War of the Worlds with a Palette Swap (silver body with blue and red lights instead of dark metal with green lights) and the eyestalk removed.
  • A rather forgettable 1963 Arthurian flick, Siege of the Saxons recycled props, costumes and footage from 1954 film The Black Knight and 1963 film Lancelot and Guineviere (a.k.a. Sword of Lancelot).
  • The yellow Oldsmobile Delta 88 used in most films directed by Sam Raimi.
  • The Golden Hinde II, the 1973 replica of the ship in which Sir Francis Drake circumnavigated the globe, was used in Swashbuckler, Shogun (film and TV series), Drake's Venture and St. Trinian's 2: The Legend of Fritton's Gold.
  • Slightly-modified North American AT-6 trainer aircraft (different cockpit canopies) standing as Mitsubishi A6M "Zeros"/"Zekes" quite got around. They were originally rebuilt to impersonate A6M2 "Zekes" for the 1970 movie Tora! Tora! Tora! Despite being noticeably larger and somewhat differently-shaped aircraft than a Zero, those T-6s were later used in the series Black Sheep Squadron. They later showed up in the 1980 time-travel movie The Final Countdown, which had the nuclear carrier USS Nimitz warped back to the late afternoon of December 6, 1941, just west of Hawaii...
  • The USMC Harrier II fiberglass replica used to film the climax of True Lies was later reused by The Avengers, for the fight scene between the Hulk and Thor, where the Hulk rips a wing off to hurl at the God of Thunder. Afterward, the prop was purchased and restored by the Volo Auto Museum in Illinois.
  • It was extremely common in earlier giant monster movies for the monster props to be recycled for sequels or related productions (since it's a lot cheaper than coming up with new puppets or costumes).
    • All of the dinosaur models used in King Kong (1933) were originally made for the (ultimately unreleased) film Creation, while the armature for one of Kong's models was reused for his son in the sequel Son of Kong (and several of the other creature props, such as the Brontosaurus, were also reused due to the extreme time restraints).
    • Often Godzilla would have the same suits reused in sequels until they fell apart, resulting in some rather shoddy-looking damage to the kaiju costumes in later Showa Era films. And as detailed in the live-action tv folder, the early Ultra Series often borrowed and modified Godzilla kaiju costumes and props for its own kaiju. In one case, this recycling went even further; the Rodan puppet from Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster was used for the Ultra Q bird monster Litra, and was then returned to Toho and again modified for Ebirah, Horror of the Deep, this time into the condor monster Ookondoru.
    • A very egregious example occurs in Gamera vs. Guiron with "Space Gyaos", which is clearly just the same Gyaos props painted silver. Originally Space Gyaos was going to be a flying squirrel kaiju called Monga, but budgetary restraints resulted in the lazy Palette Swap.
  • The Crow: The elaborate rapier that Top Dollar selects from a cabinet of lesser swords is also the Six-Fingered Sword wielded by Inigo in The Princess Bride.
  • Cecil B. DeMille actively prevented anyone from reusing his The Ten Commandments set after he was done filming by literally burying it in the California desert where the film was shot. In recent years, it's been rediscovered and subject to excavation as if it really was a lost Ancient Egyptian city.
  • The prisoners in Face/Off wear the Goomba boots from Super Mario Bros.
  • In an example of Approval of God, Saw III used the bathroom set made for Scary Movie 4.

  • Referenced in The Art of Discworld, in Terry Pratchett's comments on what inspired Überwald. Remarking on the influence of Hammer Horror on this region of the Disc, he recalls how a very large, distinctively-ornate candlestick appeared in every single movie.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Cold War Day of the Jackboot mini-series Amerika has the Dirty Communists flying over the United States in helicopters reused from Blue Thunder. Except they're no longer blue.
  • Babylon 5 re-used spacesuits from 2010. They didn't realize where the costumes were from at first, and did what they could to disguise them, but ultimately, they were what they were. Ironically, the second time Babylon 5 needed the 2010 spacesuits they weren't available, so they had to make new replicas anyway. They also, interestingly, used the blue suit, the only one left unused in the earlier films - 2001 and 2010 had used the red and yellow suits (the blue belonging to a dead crewmember).
  • A skit in The Basil Brush Show where Basil attempts to scale the Himalayas, is saved by a Yeti from an avalanche and then they all have a Dance Party Ending uses the Yeti suit from the Second Doctor Doctor Who serial "The Web of Fear". Because of this, it's available as a special feature on the DVD release of another Second Doctor serial, "The Mind Robber".
  • The Ford Futura concept car was originally used in the 1959 film It Started with a Kiss. The car was subsequently transformed into the Batmobile for the 1966 Batman (1966) TV series and was seen as a normal car again in Viper.
  • Battlestar Galactica:
    • The CIC set for the Battlestar Pegasus in the 2000s Battlestar Galactica was originally built as the bridge of the Jupiter 2 for an unaired pilot of a Lost in Space remake directed by John Woo; the set was put in storage, and underwent only minor alteration for its use on BSG.
    • Galactica itself averted this trope by auctioning off a huge number of props, uniforms, set pieces, and curios to raise money for Caprica. Which was canceled after less than one season.
    • The 1970's series of Battlestar Galactica used the botanical ships from Silent Running as part of the rag-tag fleet fleeing the Cylon tyranny.
    • Scenes from the original Battlestar Galactica, including use of the ship, the shuttle, and Vipers were all re-used to make the movie Space Mutiny, which was then parodied by Mystery Science Theater 3000.
  • Buck Rogers in the 25th Century:
    • Uniforms belonging to Viper pilots on Battlestar Galactica are worn by guards in the episode, "Cosmic Whiz Kid".
    • The distinctive throttles from the Vipers themselves also turned up in Roger's enemy starfighters.
    • The land vehicle that resembles a tank/personnel carrier from Battlestar Galactica is used in the pilot movie.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: D'Hoffryn was originally dubbed "Mr. Hodgepodge" by the makeup artists because they used pieces from The Judge, a demon of Jhe, and the Rage Monster (Pete) to make him.
  • At the end of the Charmed pilot episode "Something Wicca This Way Comes", Prue is seen holding the same newspaper from Mrs. Doubtfire, where Daniel Hillard gets his eponymous alias from.
  • Parodied by Conan O'Brien; some time after doing a sketch that involved the use of a large animatronic whale, Conan informed his viewers that NBC had instructed him to re-use the whale in order to make up their investment on it, and thus launched "Whale Week", wherein the whale was used repeatedly in several gags each night. There was also a running joke where they kept using a costume over and over again over one season. It started out as a Giant Grub costume, then turned into a Surrendering Croissant, a Victorious Connoli, a Liposuctioned Jabba the Hutt, a pissed off kreplach, and a Beach Rock. Conan kept asking for suggestions, and even gave out a button as a prize for it.
  • Following the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, CTV's Vancouver station repurposed portions of CTV's Olympic set for its news studio.
  • Doctor Who has several examples of this. The BBC has large amounts of props and costumes in storage, so the original series has quite a few examples of prop recycling, both in show, and across other BBC series.
    • The spacesuits worn by the astronauts in "The Tenth Planet" show up again in "The Wheel in Space" for no reason. They then got recycled in The Empire Strikes Back.
    • The robots in "The Mind Robber" are reused from a BBC adaptation of Isaac Asimov's short story "Reason".
    • Not all of them were BBC originals in the first place; for example the BBC bought a load of ex-Gerry Anderson props in the early '70s, so one sonic screwdriver prop was from the movie Thunderbirds Are Go, and various control panels from UFO turn up occasionally up to the mid '80s.
    • In the seventies and eighties, every UK sci-fi show would at some point (or more likely, at several points) use a distinctive triangular grid wall originally seen in the Skybase from "The Mutants". The interesting thing about this one is that it wasn't necessarily the same wall, but would have been made from the same moulds, which were specially built for the Doctor Who serial. In Doctor Who itself, the wall reappeared in the hyperspace craft from "The Stones of Blood", the Skonnon transporter from "The Horns of Nimon" and the room on the TARDIS which served as sleeping quarters for first Adric, then Turlough. (Seen in "Earthshock" and "Terminus").
    • "Revenge of the Cybermen":
      • A stylised insignia based on Celtic knotwork used by the Vogans in "Revenge of the Cybermen" appears again in "The Deadly Assassin" as a Gallifreyan symbol ... and in just about every Gallifrey-set story afterwards, since it becomes the Seal of Rassilon. The Doctor Who New Adventures explain that the Vogans borrowed the design from the Time Lords.
      • The phone hidden in a shoe brush used by Kellerman was the one used by Roger Moore on Live and Let Die. Apparently, Moore had offered it to the BBC props department, and the propmaster had not recognised him and offered him two shillings and sixpence for it. Considering that Live and Let Die was released two years after the pound decimalised, this seems slightly anachronous.
    • This is most prominent in the late '70s and early '80s between Doctor Who and Blake's 7, where the shows shared an excessive amount of props and costumes. Romana I and Servalan wore the same white feather cloak, the guards in "Frontios" wore the Federation guards' helmets from B7, and certain idiosyncratic wall panels show up all the time. Of course, the series shared writers and producers as well, and Terry Nation even planned a real crossover at one point. The most controversial example of this was the use of a Sea Devil costume for the monster in the Blake's 7 fourth season opening, "Rescue". The Doctor Who team at the time were reportedly extremely angry that no permission had been requested (and also wouldn't have granted it).
    • The King of Hearts outfit that the Fourth Doctor wears in his Costume-Test Montage in "Robot" originates from a 1972 musical version of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, although he's wearing it with the hat worn by the Knave of Hearts (presumably because of his unusually large hat size).
    • Most of the Sontaran technology in "The Sontaran Experiment" is reused from the sets built for "The Time Warrior", although ironically not the Sontaran costumes that the serial was written to reuse.
    • The monster in "The Seeds of Doom" is just an Axon from "The Claws of Axos", but painted green.
    • In "The Androids of Tara", the faceless android is based on the robot head used for the Sarah Jane robot in "The Android Invasion", a story that was only a couple of years old at that point.
    • The vacuum-formed cryogenic pods used in "The Ark in Space" show up again in "The Horns of Nimon".
    • K-9 in "School Reunion" is the same prop used in the original series.
    • The Sontaran cloning table on which Martha was held in "The Sontaran Stratagem" is obviously made from a Cyber Conversion Unit.
    • In "The Vampires of Venice", Amy is strapped into the Cyberking's throne from "The Next Doctor".
    • Although it's not likely to have real significance, some fans have made a to-do over the fact that part of the rocketship seat used by Jenny at the end of "The Doctor's Daughter" is reused for Oswin's escape pod in "Asylum of the Daleks".
    • The levers that seal the doors in the escape pod from the Alaska was first seen in "Utopia", when the Master shuts down the bunker's defences.
    • "Asylum of the Daleks" features the Special Weapons Dalek originally from "Remembrance of the Daleks" — the only Dalek reused between the Classic and New series. It makes a reappearance in "The Witch's Familiar", along with many other classic series Daleks.
    • "The Rings of Akhaten" features a large variety of alien creatures in a space market. Some of the aliens are made by combining costume pieces from many other species from the show — one in particular has the head of a Hoix, the breathing apparatus of a Hath, and the tentacle-beard of an Ood.
    • In the minisode "The Last Day", the P.O.V. Cam main character has a premonition of their impending disintegration by the Daleks, their face replaced by a skull. The normal Dalek disintegration effect used in the series is CGI, but the skull we see in the shot is the practical skull mask used to represent the Vashta Nerada-ised spacesuits from "Silence in the Library"/"Forest of the Dead", with the helmet part altered to Gallifreyan colours.
    • Clara wears a badge in "Nightmare in Silver" which was originally a Space Corps Super Infinity Fleet badge from the Red Dwarf episode "Trojan".
    • Also from that episode, the soldiers are seen using the communicators from "The Time of Angels"/"Flesh and Stone".
    • Orson's space suit in "Listen" is one of the suits from "The Impossible Planet"/"The Satan Pit", with even the logo intact. So are the space suits used by the Doctor and his crew in "Kill the Moon", though the logo has been removed by this point.
    • The miniaturized TARDIS's "siege mode" in "Flatline" looks suspiciously like the hypercube from "The Doctor's Wife".
    • The Beano Summer Special Graham suddenly finds himself reading in the 2018 World Cup teaser is the same one Eleven was reading in "The Rings of Akhaten".
    • Doctor Who Magazine constructed an elaborate tongue-in-cheek theory over the fact that Marco Polo's two costumes in "Marco Polo" would be reused in "The Crusade" and "The Celestial Toymaker". Clearly, the tunic was indeed the same one worn by King Richard, which someone in Jaffa had ended up with, and then passed down over the generations, until Polo bought it on his own visit to the Holy Land. And Polo must have been provided with his Chinese robe by Kublai Khan, who is known to enjoy gambling over a game of backgammon, and therefore could easily have subsequently lost it to the ultimate gamesman.
  • Double Dare re-used several of its props, mostly from the obstacle course. Some obstacles from the original version continued to be used into Super Sloppy with a few from the kids-only versions surviving even into Family.
    • The climbing ramp and platform for the Sundae Slide were used for the Fireman's Flagpull obstacle from the first season. The first version of the Sewer Chute also shared the Sundae Slide's platform.
    • The "mushroom" steps contestants climb to jump into The Tank were also used for the Sewer Chute and Inside-Out.
    • The kernels for the Popcorn obstacle from 1989-90 were falling apart, so they were given a new coat of paint and used one last time for a Super Special physical challenge from 1992.
    • The waffles from the Squelch 'M Waffles obstacle were used for a Breakfast in Bed physical challenge, as was the Birdcage from Bye Bye Birdie.
    • The mailbox used for It's in the Mail from 1987-88 returned for 2000 with a new name: Special Delivery.
    • In One Ear from Super Sloppy and Family was brought back for 2000, but it was given new hair and eyes.
    • The Lube Job obstacle was later used for physical challenges and toss-ups on 2000.
    • Two props managed to survive from the very beginning through Double Dare 2000: the One-Ton Human Hamster Wheel (albeit with updated numbers) and the spiral slide from the Sundae Slide (renamed "Just Desserts" for 2000). Coincidentally, both props were used on Legends of the Hidden Temple.
    • The wheel part of the Hamster Wheel was detached for the Drum Roll obstacle. It was also used for the PAX revival of Beat the Clock.
  • Eureka uses props from Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis, especially in the realm of "futuristic" weaponry. Most noticable is a triple-barreled assault rifle first used by the Genii and Satedan against the Wraith, shows up in Eureka with Jo the police woman holding it.
  • The Family Channel may take the cake for prop recycling for three game shows they aired in 1994; Boggle, Shuffle, and Jumble. All three of them used the exact same glass tiled walls, contestant podiums, and telephone keypad set piece, redressed each time in an attempt to make each show look unique. The props weren't all that got recycled; all three also shared the same music package, sound effects, host, and announcer.
  • Firefly:
    • The Alliance armour in the episode "The Train Job" came from Starship Troopers.
    • There were three spacesuits in Serenity's inventory on Firefly. Two were recycled from a previous space series, but the big yellow one worn by Jayne was originally Dolph Lundgren's flight suit.
    • Jayne's gun Vera originally appeared in the 2002 movie Showtime.
    • Zoe's sawn-off Winchester rifle is the same one used by Bowler in The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr..
  • The Vogon spaceship interiors in the TV version of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy are from Alien.
  • The Submarine set in the JAG episode "Shadow" was the one built for the movie Crimson Tide.
  • Kamen Rider and Super Sentai regularly recycle sets, costumes, props, CGI models and effects across the seasons because of budgetary and law restrictions. A typical example are the ever repeating sets of construction site full of concrete pipes, an abandoned quary or a city square with stone collums. As for costumes there's one in particular (yellowy brown with lots of spiky appendages sticking out) that seems to have been used at least once every couple of years since the early nineties.
    • The Metropolitan Area Outer Underground Discharge Channel has appeared prominently a few times, including Kamen Rider Decade's high-speed battle with TheBee, the music video for Kamen Rider Doubles movie's theme song, and as part of the spaceship XV-Two in Kamen Rider Fourzes movie.
    • The office set belonging to Kamen Rider OOO's Big Good Kousei Kougami has been redressed and reused in almost every subsequent series; it's also been used by government agents, politicians, and corporate CEOs. In short, if someone with any authority appears in modern-era Kamen Rider, they'll more than likely be in Kougami's office.
    • Additionally, movie-exclusive Villain Riders from the Heisei era (2000 onwards) tend to use modified versions of the hero Rider's costume and gear. It's easiest to spot with Kamen Rider Den-O, simply because it's had so many movies: Gaoh, Yu-Kinote , and G Den-O all use modified Den-O suits, but the most obvious is Nega Den-O, whose suit is literally just Den-O's Sword Form with purple armor instead of red and blue, flame-like decals applied to it.
      • Special mention also goes to Kamen Rider Gaim; not only does the Summer movie feature a black Gaim, but it introduces Mars and Kamuro, whose apple-themed Golden and Silver Arms suits would later be repurposed for Jam's Darkness Arms in the final episode, Idunn's Ringo Arms and Saviour's Blood Zakuro in the Gaim Gaiden direct-to-video movies. On top of this, Darkness and Blood Zakuro Arms use repainted versions of Gaim's Daidaimaru sword while Ringo Arms wields Mars' sword and shield.
      • Ex-Aid features several special one-off costumes (based off of past Riders and Bandai Namco video games) which ended up getting repainted and used in different contexts. The Big Bad Kamen Rider Chronus' costume was made from Gemn's Kamen Rider Wizard form (made obvious by the fact that it has Wizard's Badass Longcoat); likewise, Ex-Aid's movie-exclusive VR Gamer form was made from a spare Chronus suit. The Namco classic suits were repaints of the Riders' normal Level 3 formsnote ; the post-series Another Ending movies repainted the Pac-Man suit into the fighting game-based Knock-Out Fighter 2 suit for Ex-Aid, while his Maximum Mighty X suit was painted black and purple to become Genm's God Maximum X form.
    • Besides villains, movie-exclusive Rider suits are more often than not repaints/modifications to existing suits. Kamen Rider Wizard does this in spades, as all three of his movies feature forms that are modified from his standard All Dragon Style (two of them also being modifications of his ultimate form, Infinity Style).
    • Kamen Rider Decade has this built right in naturally. Decade can turn into past Riders, Diend can summon copies of them, and visiting Alternate Universe versions of past series allowed the re-use of Rider and Monster of the Week costumes and props. In a smaller example, Diend's card holder originally belonged to Kamen Rider Zeronos, the only change being a small disc with Diend's logo being put on the front.
    • Kamen Rider Ryuki borrows the masks of the Kinclons / Skugs.
    • The Zectrooper uniforms from Kamen Rider Kabuto have been reused in bulk, likely because Toei just has so many of them. Kamen Rider Den-O, Kamen Rider Double, and Kamen Rider Gaim used them as the Mooks for the Leo Imagin, Commander Dopant, and Megahex respectively.
    • An odd example comes from the Kamen Rider Den-O movie The Onigashima Warship, where the villains' Mooks are Raydragoons from Kamen Rider Ryuki. The costume design book "Detail of Heroes" explains that this happened because Toei had lots of Raydragoon suits left over from the American series Kamen Rider Dragon Knight.
    • In Kamen Rider Gaim, the Man of the Beginning costume worn by Kouta at the end of the series combines Gaim's Kiwami Arms suit (minus the helmet and sporting a new cape) with the chestplate from Kurokage (painted silver). This actually makes for a weird irony, since Kiwami Arms is by far the strongest character in the series and Kurokage is by far the weakest.
      • Another example from Gaim comes from it's stage show, where the rider exclusive to said show, Maja, uses a recolored version of the suit and weapons worn by Kamen Rider Fifteen.
    • In Kamen Rider Ex-Aid, the rusted sword that becomes Kamen Rider Brave's Gashacon Sword is a modified version of Kuuga's Titan Sword.
      • Ex-Aid has a few more obvious examples. Meanwhile, Kamen Rider 555's Riotroopers had their Swiss Army Weapons repainted for use by Kamen Rider Ghost's Ganma, and then they were repainted again to be wielded by Ex-Aid's Ride-Players. Kamen Rider True Brave's sword in the summer movie was originally used by the Fire Ganmizer in Ghost. The SFX of Alhambra Bugster's spells have Wizard's sign edited out.
  • The producers of UHF struck a deal with KOED-11, the PBS station (part of a statewide network) in Tulsa to build a news set in their studio. The Tulsa station used the set for their own broadcasts for a couple years afterward.
  • The Love Boat literally will not "be taking another run". It was scrapped (recycled!) in March of 2012.
  • Another (or possibly the same?) prop newspaper has been used for decades. Recently someone noticed that Ed O'Neill was reading it in Married... with Children and is still reading it in Modern Family.
  • The BBC's 1980s adaptation of Miss Marple, in "4.50 From Paddington", has one of the main characters dressed in the distinctive red polka-dot velvet smoking jacket that the Fourth Doctor wore in "The Talons of Weng-Chiang".
  • A episode of The Monkees featured Davy Jones wearing one of the distinctive Happy Fingers beanies from The 5000 Fingersof Dr T.
  • Moonlight and Heroes shared a set involving a large sign and associated metalwork on top of a building.
  • Mork & Mindy reused Robby as "Chuck" the Robot, voiced by Roddy McDowall, when Mork brought him to life.
  • The Munsters episode "If a Martian Answers, Hang Up" features a gag at the end of the episode in which one of the alien suits from the original The Outer Limits makes a cameo appearance.
  • The Outer Limits, an anthology series, does this with their own props so much you can practically make a drinking game of it.
  • Power Rangers tends to use costumes from other Saban works to fit the need of the story.
    • In VR Troopers, the Troopers' Battle Grid costumes use recycled helmets from the original Red Ranger.
    • The soldiers' armor in Power Rangers Lost Galaxy also came from Starship Troopers.
    • Power Rangers S.P.D. had several of these leading many fans to form Epileptic Trees.
      • The A-Squad suits used repaints of the Power Rangers in Space helmets.
      • Also from in Space, Andros' Spiral Saber and cloak were used in a scene were a Mysterious Protector saves Z leading many fans to believe it was Andros at first, it wasn't. It was Doggie.
      • The Time Force Red Ranger suit was used in a flashback as the suit worn by Sky's father, leading many fans to think he was Wes's son. Nothing in the series ever contradict this, but it is still just WMG.
    • The Machine Generals in "Forever Red" were gutted from various outfits from Beetleborgs.
    • One of the Beetleborgs blasters used in "Forever Red" returned in Power Rangers RPM as a creation of Dr. K's, getting used several times.
    • The Red Ranger's helmet from Operation Overdrive was used as set dressing in one episode of RPM.
    • A futuristic car (based on a Dodge Stealth, but styled after the Pontiac "Banshee" concept car) originally built for the Knight Rider revival Knight Rider 2000 was later painted in police car colors and given police lights to appear in the TV series Timecop. In this form, it would appear years later as Alex's futuristic police car in the first episode of Power Rangers Time Force.
    • Ecliptor's second sword turns up a few times. Darkonda's becomes Villamax's the very next season, completely unaltered, and retaining it's dagger-to-sword transformation ability (not directly witnessed, but it's a small dagger except when he needs it to be a sword).
    • In Power Rangers S.P.D., the orange Krybots trade in their snowflake-shaped swords for what looks a lot like the Chrono Sabers from Power Rangers Time Force.
    • In Power Rangers Lost Galaxy, the Sixth Ranger's Transformation Trinket was actually the Trinket from Gosei Sentai Dairanger, a series that didn't get a Power Rangers equivalent (though its Humongous Mecha and Sixth Ranger were used in the second season of Mighty Morphin').
    • The Mobile Command Center in Power Rangers Ninja Storm was an 18-wheeler truck that was re-used in Power Rangers Dino Thunder as the Triceramax Command Center Truck.
    • Also, a jeep first used in Power Rangers Dino Thunder as Dr. Oliver's car reappeared in Power Rangers S.P.D. as a squad car, Power Rangers Jungle Fury as the Jungle Karma pizza truck; and Power Rangers RPM as a military vehicle.
    • Power Rangers Wild Force: Master Org's costume was used in Gosei Sentai Dairanger before, for Emperor Gohma XV.
      • Speaking of Wild Force, the Mut-org suits used in the Time Force crossover were created using a combination of parts from suits of previous PR monsters (as well as one Beetleborgs monster and an unused monster from GoGoV). The crossover originally intended to use the suits from the Gaoranger summer movie, but the suits were lost in a fire, and it was too expensive to recreate the suits for the crossover, resulting in the Mut-orgs being created.
    • Though it only showed up in Sentai footage, there's this big neon orb thing styled after an atom that kept showing up. It first appeared in Jetman in the villain's lair- it returned for Zyuranger and therefore MMPR, installed in the base of the Repulsascope. It showed up again in Dairanger, as a part of the Dairenoh cockpit- this wasn't seen in Power Rangers, as they didn't use the Dairanger costumes. It next showed up in Ohranger and/or Zeo, again at the back of a cockpit, albeit this time it was the cockpit of King Pyramider/Pyramidas. It then popped up in Megaranger/In Space, but only in one episode, as part of Gurail/Darkonda's lab (it appeared in the final episode of Megaranger in the cockpit of the Grand Nejiros, but this footage was cut from PR). It's final regular appearance was in GoGoV/Lightspeed Rescue, in a corner of the demon's lair. Kakuranger, Gingaman and Hurricaneger had minor uses for it as well. The ball has appeared since then in Japan, though not powered on and with one of the tubes loose. Some fans were quite nostalgic to see it return.
    • In Power Rangers Dino Charge, several recycled monsters are visible in Sledge's prison. One of the most obvious being Necrolai/Vancuria (difference unclear) in 'Wishing For Hero'.
    • Ninja Steel brings back past monsters as alien audience members. Necrolai, Behemoth, and Beevil are especially recognizable, as they were also frequently seen as Sledge's prisoners. We also get completely unaltered costumes of major past villains used in the first episode, one getting to be the first Monster of the Week.
    • Ninja Steel also has two Monsters of the Week that reused of the same suit as older ones. Ripperrat doubled as his brother Trapsaw, while Cat-o-Clock was reused for his sister Cleocatra.
  • Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon is another Toku example in that one set of Mooks is togged out in long robes and hoods over some very familiar masks: the Golem Hei/Putty Patrollers from Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger/Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers. Queen Serenity's crown was another Zyuranger holdover, having been worn by Princess Yui in flashbacks.
  • In The Prisoner (1967) several different side characters in various episodes are seen wearing the same number badges. This was due to a simple budgetary reason as they reused the same limited pool of printed badges throughout the series. At the same time, it is perfectly in line with the spirit of the series that people would come and go and the numbers be reassigned.
  • In Queer as Folk, Stuart buys Vince a replica of the Doctor Who Robot Buddy K-9 in an attempt to buy his affection, and it plays a prominent MacGuffin role in the last couple of episodes. The replica is the BBC's actual K-9 prop.
  • Red Dwarf:
  • Remote Control used game stage props from earlier seasons as decorations in the Studio Audience section in later seasons; the show also used props from Finders Keepers on the set.
  • The duck lamp seen in Newman's apartment in some episodes of Seinfeld comes from the little-known 1980s sitcom The Duck Factory.
  • The Sentinel uses some prop cars from Viper like the Dodge Intrepid police cars. Both series were filmed in Vancouver.
  • A somewhat literal example, Shaun Micallef's Mad as Hell has a Micallef Tonight sign hanging in the background from Shaun's early 2000s show of the same name, apparently recovered from a dumpster during the clean out at the GTV-9 studios in Willoughby prior to it closing.
  • A phone from the failed Global Frequency pilot was recycled in Smallville.
    • For a Smallville scene showing Lex Luthor in the future as the President of the United States, rather than building a whole new set for a short scene they flew Lex's actor to from Vancouver to L.A. and shot it on The West Wing's standing Oval Office set.
  • Stargate-verse:
    • An episode of Stargate SG-1 reused the cockpit from the execrable live-action Gundam movie G-Saviour.
    • Stargate Atlantis got most of the set from Blade: Trinity. The most prominent example is a curved bridge that shows up several times, such as in the hurricane episode.
    • The long, thin energy weapons with the ridged undersides on their grips, that taper to a point instead of having a barrel and look vaguely like emaciated vacuum cleaners, initially appeared in an early episode where SG-1 encounter a planet where two religious factions are at war over beliefs concerning their planet's Stargate. Since then, these weapons have become "that one prop", appearing in different, totally unrelated episodes over, and over, and over... until finally from mid-season 3 onwards they completely replaced the Wraith stunner rifles in Stargate Atlantis, which to begin with had original, completely different looking props.
    • The Ancient space suits from Stargate Universe originally appeared as power armor used by the rogue Asgard in one episode of Stargate Atlantis.
  • Star Trek:
    • The Federation transporter pads in the various series all use parts of the original one from Star Trek: The Original Series, usually flipping it or swapping out decals. This sort of thing was done fairly often, using parts of one show's sets for the ones that follow.
    • The propmasters of all incarnations of Trek were rather quite, well, masterful at prop recycling; most props were recycled either from other shows or movies or even recycled from other episodes of any given preceding Trek incarnation including itself. Starship models, even in the CGI era, were particularly prone to this, the end result being several different alien races, separated by the entire length of the galaxy or even by centuries in some cases (or even both) used variations of the same ship design in various scales (or their medical scanner or communications relay would bear an odd resemblance to a certain race's ship). In addition, one gets the impression that Starfleet never throws anything out, with starship designs introduced in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan and Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country shown still being widely used by Starfleet a century later in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: First Contact.
    • Most of the sets from the Star Trek: The Next Generation era of Trek owe their existence to Star Trek: The Motion Picture. Almost every single subsequent starship interior, including those of Picard's USS Enterprise, USS Voyager and so on, and even Klingon ship interiors, were redresses of the Enterprise interior from that film (namely, all eponymous ships [but not stations] shared the same hallway interiors, and Klingon bridges were actually the redress of the engineering room from the film). These 30+ year old sets survived until shortly after Star Trek: Voyager wrapped up, in which they were destroyed by having accidentally been left out in the rain; some were painstakingly recreated for the final episode of Star Trek: Enterprise.
    • This site has a massive list of re-used Trek props, sets, make-up, etc. Just scroll down and click on anything that starts with "Re-Used". These bad boys (a.k.a. the Blinky double tube that serve no purpose) have to be the patron saint of recycled props.
    • This also occurs with special effects and models. A Retcon was made to justify why both Klingons and Romulans had the same D-7 Battle Cruiser, just so they could reuse the model. The Voyager episode "Dragon's Teeth" has a series of subspace corridors that was simply a different color and miscellaneous debris thrown into the quantum slipstream drive effect. In the Voyager episode "Warlord", they reused a ship model from the Next Generation episode "Unification". And especially as the series tilted towards CG ships, many different ships were recolored, resized and/or slightly modified from prior CG models to save time and money.
    • One case of this being inverted was that the Romulan Warbird model from "Balance of Terror" ended up being lost. This was a factor in the aforementioned D-7 exchange, as well as the Romulans in general taking a backseat to the Klingons.
    • In Star Trek: The Original Series they sent out some people to go get unusual salt and pepper shakers for the mess hall scenes, so to look "futuristic". The ones they got were rejected because it was decided this would just confuse the viewers and they wound up using normal looking ones. The weird ones were moved to the sick bay and became advanced tech medical instruments.
    • The bombardier-like window of a spacecraft in one episode of Star Trek: Enterprise was reused as a portal to the Xindi aquarians the following season.
    • A piece of Borg debris in the episode "Regeneration" was a spare Enterprise-E saucer section left over from Star Trek: Nemesis.
    • An example that has gone unnoticed for decades: Paramount altered Col. Philip Green's jumpsuit from the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "The Savage Curtain" into Mork's spacesuit. Ya rly. And that's not the only thing they recycled... This is also a bit of hilarious irony to Star Trek fans, since Col. Philip Green is, in the Star Trek universe, the 21st century answer to Hitler, who organized the extermination of 30 million radiation-mutated people and was a symbol of xenophobic sentiment for centuries.
    • Another bit from Star Trek: The Original Series to show up on Mork & Mindy was the spacesuit from "The Tholian Web". Mindy's dad showed up wearing it in one episode.
    • In the Next Generation episode "Pen Pals", the spectral analyzer used by a survey team in one scene is in fact the Oscillation Overthruster from The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. This may have been a shout-out, as prop-master Michael Okuda was a huge BB fan.
    • The Enterprise-D Engineering Master Systems Display table AKA the "pool table" was the Starfleet Command Center console from Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.
  • In the episode "Hollywood Babylon" of Supernatural, the set of of the horror movie Hell Hazers II: The Reckoning has items from other Supernatural episodes including the water tower from "Crossroad Blues" (S02, Ep08) and the cabin from "Roadkill" (S02, Ep16).
  • The Twilight Zone (1959) is famous for recycling pieces of the set. Some examples:
  • Ultra Series:
    • One of Ultraman's earliest monster battles was against Jirass, a monster that was very clearly an old Godzilla costume painted green and a neck frill added. Said frill is ripped off very early in the fight, presumably because the special effects crew knew how obvious it looked, so they just decided to roll with the idea of "Ultraman vs. Godzilla". In fact, Jirass has a lot of fans, because he looks like Godzilla.
    • Prior to Jirass was Gomess from Ultra Q (the very first Ultra kaiju), another repurposed Godzilla. Unlike Jirass, they did a better job of disguising the suit with horns, tusks, fur, and the spines removed. And in the same episode as Gomess was a giant bird named Litra, a repurposed Rodan flight puppet given feathers. In fact, a large number of Ultra Q creatures were modified from Toho suits as Eiji Tsuburaya owned the suits, not the studio, so he was free to borrow them if suit-making costs needed to be cut.
    • One of the most famous examples among fans from the franchise's early days was the frequent usage of Toho's Baragon suit. The suit was used by Tsuburaya to play four different monsters: the uranium-eating Pagos from Ultra Q, as well as three Ultraman opponents, the electricity-eating Neronga, the mole-like Magular, and the cone-headed Gabora. Every time, the suit was given a different head, and sometimes the body received minor modifications like spikes or different colours. Unfortunately, Tsuburaya's usage of the Baragon suit ended up damaging it beyond use, so when Toho recalled the suit for Destroy All Monsters, Baragon was relegated to a few quick cameos. In the 2000s, Tsuburaya Productions brought back the tradition when they created the Baragon-like Geronga for Ultraman Max and modified the suit for Neronga and Magular's reappearances in Ultra Galaxy Mega Monster Battle. This time, the suits have stayed in good condition for a longer period.
    • Many other monster costumes were also recycled, most often for modification into newer monsters (the list is very long). But since 2005, Tsuburaya has dropped the constant churn-out of new monsters in favour of bringing back iconic, popular, and classic monsters from all the dozen or so previous main entries (some of which hadn't reappeared in decades) and reusing the suits for multiple movies and TV series (occasionally with minor artistic adjustments). Popular monsters like Gomora, Red King, and Zetton have been seen in every entry since their returns. Saves on budget and entertains older fans while introducing the younger ones to iconics that hadn't been seen since their debuts. The same also applies with the Ultramen suits.
  • This thing which looks like some kind of energy device with two clear tubes with cathode style lighting inside, connected to mechanical looking holders, all on top of a large table. With wheels. No telling what it does, but it's shown up in V (1983), Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, Knight Rider, Airplane II: The Sequelnote , Alien Nation, The Six Million Dollar Man, The Last Starfighter, and several Star Trek series — just to name a few. Once you see it, you can never stop seeing it in the background. It's like the Wilhelm scream of props.
  • Most of the set from the failed 2001 revival of Card Sharks was reused for Whammy! The All-New Press Your Luck, as was announcer Gary Kroeger.
  • In season 25, Wheel of Fortune introduced a special electronic wedge called the Big Money Wedge, which featured neon and a video screen that alternated among dollar amounts. When it was retired at the end of the season, the wedge was recycled for a redesign of the Jackpot Wedge.
    • For a few casino-themed weeks in the mid-2000s, they replaced the usual video wall behind the contestants with a giant replica of a slot machine that featured three video walls for tumblers. This prop was recycled in 2006 when a pilot was shot for a revival of The Joker's Wild, but said pilot was not picked up for series.
  • A few times, the Eubanks/Rafferty Card Sharks used trip skins from The Price Is Right whenever a vacation was offered in the Bonus Round in lieu of a car (normally during Young People's Week).
    • Price, meanwhile, has reused a few props over the years. For instance, the spotlights used around the Big Doors on the 1986 primetime specials were used in the same role for the 1993 New Price Is Right pilots, then appeared in an October 1998 Showcase where Kathleen played a studio tour guide.
  • After the short-lived NBC game All-Star Secrets got canned in 1979, most of the set was reused for a revival of You Bet Your Life the following year.
  • In the Ripper Street episode "The Strangers' Home", the character of Eleonora Freeman appears to be wearing Mina Harker's triangular jacket thing from the 1968 ITV adaptation of Dracula.
  • The Golden Pontiac from Lost was used in four episodes and everytime involved in car crashes. It became so famous that Lostpedia even gave the car its own page. Fans started to speculate about this car and going by the mysterious approach of the series the believed that this car was also exactly the same in terms of story. However as the accidents happened in three different US states (Iowa, California and New York) it was deemed to be either supernatural or just prop recycling. It was confirmed in an interview with Damon Lindelof on September 21, 2005 that the same prop car was used for all four accidents.
  • Vikings has recycled plenty of costumes from other productions filmed in Ireland and Northern Ireland.
    • The Wessex-mooks uses armour lifted from Braveheart. The anglo-saxon helmets are also from the 2004 film of King Arhtur, were they were fashioned by the saxons.
    • Alot of costumes are recycled from the 2004 film of Tristan + Isolde. Some helmets and costumes where used for extras in season 1 to 3, but from season 4 the amount of costumes reused where on the level of fans of the show being able to have games spotting a costume in Tristan + Isolde reused in Vikings.
    • In season 5 Björn starts fashioning the same leather gambeson Micheal Fassbender used the 2015 film of Macbeth.
    • Kjetill Flatnose's belt is a Dothraki-belt from Game of Thrones.
  • The Big Red Chair on The Graham Norton Show is a redressed prop chair that was used in an homage to Ronnie Corbett from The Two Ronnies. Making the chair in the first place turned out to be so expensive that it became a recurring segment to justify the cost.

    Music Videos 


    Pro Wrestling 
  • Averted in the case of the WWF Hardcore Title. For years, many fans believed that the title was the same broken title belt smashed by Mr. Perfect on an episode of "Saturday Night's Main Event". WWE has confirmed that this is not the case.

    Puppet Shows 
  • On Sesame Street, the train prop used in "The Ballad of Casey McPhee" would be re-used in the "Beat the Time" skit with Cookie Monster.
    • Sesame Street and it's international co-productions often recycle puppets from each other. For example: Birdie from Little Children, Big Challenges: Divorce is just Arthur from the short-lived Japanese co-production with no changes whatsoever, Preston Rabbit's original puppet was reused for various one-shot characters in Sesamstrasse, and Mama Bird from Sesame Street Episode 4401 was originally Claribelle of Sesame Tree.
  • Of course, with puppets, producers are not just restricted to recycling things. They can recycle characters — a quick dye job, switch out the eyes, put the head onto a differently-dressed body, and voila, a new hero/villain/bystander. Gerry Anderson's series are well-known for this, particularly for the Stingray episode in which the hero of the previous GA series, Steve Zodiac of Fireball XL5 fame, is re-used with dark hair as, of all things, an actor! Where this can be a problem is when the puppets' features change over time. Zodiac, for instance, had a rather large head and cruder facial features than the Stingray puppets. Once Anderson moved to proportionally-sized heads for Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons et seq., he couldn't use the older puppets any more, but did use the Scarlet puppets in subsequent series.
  • Achmed the Dead Terrorist from the routines of Jeff Dunham has a very interesting pair of eyes. They're interesting because they're spare eyes from Mars Attacks!.
  • The Muppets regularly reuse puppets from earlier productions in newer ones, sometimes as background cast and sometimes as new characters. Justified on The Muppet Show as (in-universe) all the characters are actors.
  • Les Guignols de l'Info
    • The French and Spanish versions shared puppets, and the puppets of people who are famous in one country are sometimes recycled as average, non-famous citizens in the other. This can be bizarre if you watch either version while being familiar with the other, because the host puppet (PPD in Les Guignols, Hilario Pino in Los Guiñoles) is particularly prone to this.
    • Les Guignols de l'info also sometimes used puppets from Les Minikeums as young extras or incidental characters, as the shows shared a workshop and some puppeteers.

    Theme Parks 

  • Many Transformers toys reuse older versions' molds to save on the cost of new figures.
  • Irwin's Li'l Babies figures were simply LJN's Oodles with the head-loops hacked off.
  • Peppermint Rose dolls were modified versions of an earlier Mattel property, Lady Lovely Locks.
  • After the cancellation of the Rose Petal Place franchise and toys, the dolls' molds were reused for the Bubble Belles toyline.
  • The toyline for Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves reused tons of stuff from other Kenner toylines, mostly Star Wars and the Super Powers Collection.
  • In the mid-60s, Ideal manufactured a collection of The Man from U.N.C.L.E.. toys that included the triangular I.D. badge from the TV series. These badges were recycled into Captain Action badges a couple of years later after the show went off the air by covering the UNCLE logo with a sticky paper label.

    Video Games 
  • In Apex Legends, many of the weapons and Legends' abilities are recycled from Titanfall 2. Most notably, Wraith's "Into the Void" ability is copied wholesale from Titanfall 2 's Phase Shift right down to the black-and-white negative vision. Even a few animations and character models have been reused, including the run off of a dropship and the legend Pathfinder having the same body as a MRVN robot from both Titanfall games.
  • When Telltale designed their games for the Wii, they needed to recycle their 3D models due to the console's limited memory..
  • Sam & Max:
    • Played with in the second episode of Season One. One of the props in a prop warehouse is a sign from the developer's previous game, Bone. So it's a recycled prop being used as a recycled prop.
    • Used more straight, the cow from that same episode can be briefly seen in the third episode of Wallace & Gromit's Grand Adventures. Although it's hidden behind a door, you can see it and it's extremely obvious it's the same cow since it doesn't fit the art style at all.
  • Activision:
    • There are obviously re-used props in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, like American police cars from the Virginia levels appearing on the tarmac at a Moscow airport. Or American taxicabs appearing in Afghanistan.
    • Modern Warfare 3 follows suit, with multiple returning weapons reusing their MW2 models at various times despite having new ones used everywhere else - in particular, the new USP model doesn't show up anywhere in the campaign.
    • Call of Duty: Black Ops II directly lifts some of its flashback and Nazi Zombies arsenal from the previous game, with only new animations and slightly-changed models — though one weapon model from Modern Warfare 2 also sneaks its way into The '80s. In turn, the first Black Ops reuses some weapons from World at War for its Zombies maps and the "Project Nova" flashback level.
    • The James Bond licensed games occasionally get in on the prop recycling as well. GoldenEye Reloaded reuses a couple weapon models from the game adaptation of Quantum of Solace (like the "TND-16" and "Hutchinson A3" replacing the old "Terralite III" and "PT-9 Interdictus", and props from inside a German dam in Call of Duty 2; it even reuses weapon models from the Wii version in the weapon cases at the Dubai level. 007 Legends, in turn, reuses nearly the entire Reloaded arsenal.
  • Valve Software:
    • Valve in general reuses props, textures, and sound effects across franchises whenever they can, mostly because nearly all of their games started out as mods of others. Since every game except Team Fortress 2 has essentially the same visual style, and the engine itself does not support significantly higher-detail graphics than it did when it was first created, it still looks natural. Open up Hammer's prop browser for either of the Left 4 Dead games or Portal 2 if you're so inclined; many of the props that were lifted from Counter-Strike: Source are still in folders named for their respective maps.
    • The "Aperture Science High-Energy Pellet" in Portal uses the same sprite and sounds as the Combine orbs in Half-Life 2. The orbs used to fuel the security systems, at least, appear to be completely harmless, so they can't be the same as the One-Hit Kill High-Energy Pellet.
    • Car wreck props are likewise reused from Half-Life 2 throughout the various Source games and end up being quite unfitting due to mostly being Eastern European cars made specifically for HL2's setting, ending up in the Middle East or the United States.
    • Portal 2 seems to even have an in-universe example: In the informative looping videos that display in the elevator areas, the "animal king" the voiceover describes is a turret made giant-size and painted over with a leopard skin.
    • Incidentally, Team Fortress 2 does the opposite when other Valve games cross over; when Bill's hat, the frying pan, Ellis's cap and the AWP were included in the game, they all got unique models to fit TF2's art style.
    • The turrets in Portal, while using different models and some different sound effects, have the same basic shape and properties as those in Half-Life 2.
    • The plants from Chell's room in Portal 2 sometimes show up in later animations featuring the Team Fortress cast. Like the earlier Telltale example, it stands out, because the art styles don't quite mix. You can see them in the "Meet The Pyro" trailer, as well as the Steam Link introduction video.
  • Bethesda does this from time to time:
    • Caves and skeletons from The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion were later used in Fallout 3.
      • The Pip-Boy, Vault designs, and other stuff such as indoor areas and the Vertibird from Fallout 3 were reused in Fallout: New Vegas. It helps that New Vegas was done in 18 months, primarily by a different developer, and since they use the same Game Engine, it made sense to save time where they could by reusing appropriate props.
    • The skeleton in Fallout 4 along with several sound (such as picking bottles) are directly reused from The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. Aboard Prydwen, you can also find an "experimental plant" which is basically Nirnroot from Skyrim.
  • Super Robot Wars
    • In Super Robot Wars W, a sprite of the (broken) Tokyo Tower used on a GaoGaiGar chapter is later re-used as a (broken) Eiffel Tower for a Mazinkaiser one. Except the Eiffel Tower isn't red.
    • W in general reused a lot of sprites from series' it shared with Super Robot Wars Judgment. K and L also did the same. Most of the games did however add to or improve the animations and effects for many attacks. J is the first game using that engine.
    • And then there's the PSP port of Super Robot Wars Advance, which pretty much recycles whatever it can from past PS2 titles. The devs admitted that this remake wouldn't even happen if it wasn't for this trope making it financially possible.
    • The series is quite fond of reusing things if they can. The only time this is averted are the original Game Boy Advance OG games, each with their own engine with very little if anything reused.
  • In the Mass Effect 2: Arrival DLC, the animation and prop seen when Dr. Amanda Kenson breaks out of her restraints after being rescued by Shepard uses the same motions (she uses both hands to rip the neck collar off, and grimaces while doing so, before staggering to her feet) as Jack does during her recruitment mission in the same game.
  • Some of the objects and scenery in the game Super Mario 3D Land were actually taken from Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario Galaxy 2.
  • Serious Sam 3 BFE uses many props and models from a cancelled generic military shooter which the developer Croteam had to cancel after the original publisher encountered financial difficulties. The game also has several models repurposed from a failed Doom 4 pitch.
  • The Darkstalkers series is notorious for not redrawing a character unless they have to. This was especially notable in the Capcom vs. games, where Morrigan's sprites were reused with little to no modification for seven years and always stood out against the newer sprites of other characters. Tatsunoko vs. Capcom greatly amused many gamers as, due to the game being in 3D, Capcom finally had to re-animate her. How much model and motion data was retained for Morrigan, Zero, and Frank West (not to mention Ryu and Chun Li) from Tatsunoko to Marvel vs. Capcom 3 varies.
    • Capcom promptly got at it again with Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite, where several characters from their side reused their MvC3 models. They very quickly proved to clash with the artstyle of the newly-modeled characters and the lighting engine designed around them.
  • The galaxy seen in World 4's map screen in Super Mario Galaxy 2 is actually taken from the Final Destination stage from Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask recycles nearly every character model from Ocarina of Time, as well as the pause screen and a few other models, and yet it still manages to create an almost completely different game. Mainly by making Termina some kind of strange Bizarro Universe counterpart of Hyrule where everyone has different names and their personalities are changed.
  • The Dice/EA Battlefield series re-uses props throughout the series:
    • Battlefield Play4Free, in addition to reusing levels from Battlefield 2, also reuses weapons and vehicles from it, as well as from Battlefield: Bad Company and, after it came out, Battlefield 3.
    • Battlefield 4 re-uses a tonne of content from Battlefield 3. The animations for knifing an enemy, reloading the shotguns, the assault rifles, jeeps, and enemy vehicles are all direct copies from the previous game. Several weapons in the released game also have their models lifted from Medal of Honor: Warfighter, sometimes with their associated animations as well, at least in part because the team behind the Medal of Honor reboots handled the BF4 DLC and post-release support and the games are in the same engine.
  • Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World uses the same skit portraits for the original cast as in the first game. This is rather odd in Regal's case, as by the time he joins your party he's no longer wearing the prison uniform his skit portrait shows him wearing (though he eventually just changes into his prison garbs anyway).
  • Various Metroidvania entries in the Castlevania series (especially Castlevania: Rondo of Blood, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, the DS games and Castlevania: Harmony of Despair) have been known to take the same spriteset for an enemy and, at most, change the palette. For example, take a look at all the similar Werewolf sprites.
  • Anyone who played 'Rayman 2: The Great Escape will probably notice that a certain very characteristic texture of grating was reused for walls that Pey'j from Beyond Good & Evil'' can cut with his tool.
  • Many units in WarCraft III share the same animations while looking nothing like each other, in addition to the usual Underground Monkey reskinning.
  • Gameloft: The worst offender is their 1st-generation (pre-iOS 5.1) FPS games. One M2 machinegun model is used in Splinter Cell: Conviction, Rainbow Six: Shadow Vanguard, and two of their Modern Combat games.
  • Modern Ubisoft games like to do this whenever they can. Parts of the SC: Conviction armory are reused from Rainbow Six: Vegas (most notably the AK-47 and AKS-74U prominently used in the flashback level set during The Gulf War) with appropriate updates like actually changing the magazine model when the player upgrades their magazine capacity. Blacklist follows suit, grabbing the models for the "Goblin" and ACE 53 from Far Cry 3, and possibly the SA-58 OSW from Ghost Recon: Future Soldier. Watch_Dogs is probably the most notable, taking models from all of the above, up to and including a fictional design from Future Soldier.
  • F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin has a blink-and-you'll-miss-it reuse of the first game's "AT-14" pistol in the final level. The burst-firing ASP rifle also shows up, model unchanged, in multiplayer.
  • MechWarrior Living Legends recycles a large number of (largely environmental) assets from Crysis despite being a total conversion mod. Prop recycling was part of the decision to remain as a game mod rather than going as a full standalone CryEngine game, as they would have had to remove and replace all the recycled Crysis props and audio effects.
  • This becomes a Discussed Trope in Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy. The game has you play as a recycled man, in a recycled cauldron, using a recycled hammer to climb a mountain made entirely of recycled assets. Early in the game, the narration points out that games aren't normally assembled from premade components despite predictions of such, because once an asset is recognized as reusable, it becomes "trash", much the same way food becomes trash when you put it in the sink.
  • Played for Laughs in Undertale where Sans the Skeleton has a snow-covered sentry booth set up in the forest outside Snowdin. You later run into him at various other points and in various other areas throughout the game, and he's almost always sitting in an identical, snow-covered booth. It finally gets egregious to the point of receiving a lampshade when you meet him selling hotdogs from the booth in Hotland, with one NPC chalking up the snow on the booth's roof to Sans just being too lazy to clean it off. In actuality, this prop recycling is a clue that Sans can teleport. Ergo, the booth looks the exact same because it actually really is the exact same booth every time you see it. Examining it when you first see it in the Snowdin forest even reveals that Sans stores ketchup, mustard and relish in the booth.
  • The Atari Jaguar port of Wolfenstein 3D, as part of its attempt to upgrade the game's presentation, borrowed a couple of first-person weapon sprites from Doom to act as those for the pistol, chaingun and rocket launcher. The pistol and launcher at least had some work done to them to more resemble weapons that existed during the war (the pistol having bits cut off of the sides to resemble a German WWII-issue pistol, and the launcher was simplified into basically a tube with only the muzzle resembling the Doom weapon), but since hand-held Gatling-style cannons are still purely in the realm of fiction even after legitimate attempts to make them fifty years after the real war, the chaingun sprite was essentially unmodified.
  • Sunless Sea recycles much of its minor character art from Fallen London. This usually works, although it leads to cases like the Bright-Eyed Sequencer's portrait not lining up with her text description.
  • The King of Fighters, due to being a series with yearly installments for nearly a decade, has a long history of recycling sprites and either tweaking the shading or altering certain details between games. Here's a showcase of all of Kyo Kusanagi's idle animations for comparison.
  • A hardware example: the DVD remote for the original Xbox was basically a black and green variant of a remote design used by RCA, GE, and ProScan-brand electronics of the time, even using the same remote codes (since the manufacturer of those brands at the time, Thomson, also created DVD drives for the console, presumably they volunteered to do it when Microsoft planned the add-on). Because of this, the remotes of Thomson-created DVD players can operate the Xbox, and the Xbox DVD remote can operate said DVD players as well.
  • Command & Conquer: Tiberian Sun arms the basic infantry of both sides with "M16 Mk. II pulse rifles". Whereas Nod's versions of the rifles are either just regular M16s or entirely fictional all-CG guns, GDI's variations of the rifle are represented by reused M41A pulse rifles and M590 assault rifles.
  • Mafia: Definitive Edition, being a side project by Hangar 13 with the engine and gameplay mechanics taken from Mafia III, also reuses a lot of props and textures from the latter. Dozens upon dozens of NPC models from Mafia III can also be found in Mafia: Definitive Edition's archives, albeit unused unless spawned through mods.

    Web Animation 
  • Homestar Runner is a Flash series mainly animated through the use of flat "objects" that are manipulated much like paper cutouts, so this crops up fairly often. The Gremlin, for example, started out as part of a story Bubs was telling on Halloween, but later became part of the actual Homestar Runner universe when the script called for a car. Their sister Karen joked about it in the commentary for one cartoon: "These guys are so lazy, they're pulling stuff out of the hat that they used five years ago."
  • This is common in Go Animate because of obvious limitations. For example, headbands are often used to make letters such as the hat "M" for Mario and the "A" on Alvin's shirt, along with forming Dora's backpack (it's very obvious if she bends slightly and no actual bag structure exists). Dinner plate covers with crude lines or screamer masks are used to become electrode "hats" for execution, and black/grey boxes are restructured into restraining duct tape. Simple shapes such as circles and squares are re-formed by some video makers to become crude body forms. It is also common to use FedEx boxes to represent VHS or DVD cases, as well as bibles as homework or reading material.
    • A trend to make the grounded characters more accurate to their actual versions, started by Alan the Video Maker, uses this in spades; While roses are now used to recreate the ruffles on Doris' shirt, chef hats are used to recreate long sleeves, and headbands (and MS Paint sketching) are now used to make the hair of Mami (and Dora). However, problems ensue as these props do not have a structure, causing them to go out of place when the character is moving.

  • Happens in-universe in Darths & Droids. Pete spends most of the Episode IV campaign wondering where his space dreadnought went. Upon reaching Mos Eisley, he's horrified to discover that the GM took apart the dreadnought model and incorporated those parts into the city model.

    Web Videos 

    Western Animation 
  • Batman Beyond:
    • The commentary for the episode "Splicers" noted that the gun design was reused for some Justice League Unlimited episodes.
    • And the other way around: robot drones from Justice League Unlimited had the same design as the "V-headed" Zeta model that first appeared in Batman Beyond. They're referred to as Z-8 combat training drones (get it?) In JLU. The implication being that Zeta himself is a recycled prop: an old drone with new software, bells and whistles added.
    • Batman Beyond also reused the Batmobile from Batman: The Animated Series as the elder Bruce Wayne's limousine, but they flipped it upside-down.
  • The Prop Room from House of Mouse, which consists of props from every single animated Disney film up to 2001's Atlantis: The Lost Empire.
  • Utilized to a rather impressive extent in Ed, Edd n Eddy.
    • For example, the "Ed's Hive Bee Gone" jumpsuits as seen in "Pop Goes the Ed" later make a reappearance in "It's Way Ed" as a part of the fad freaker suit (sans inscription) and later in "To Sir with Ed", this time with the aforementioned inscription scribbled out in favor of "Snake be Gone".
    • The "En-O-Gee Drinks" stand from "Over Your Ed" was reused similarly as "Ed Mart" in "A Glass of Warm Ed".
    • "The Good Ol' Ed" made good use of this to send up the classic Clip Show formula. Nearly all the props were from previous episodes, but all the flashbacks referred to previously unseen shenanigans involving the same props.
  • Robot Chicken tends to reuse a lot of the same figures and sets for unrelated sketches. One example would be a figure of an older Jem which was later used at least twice, once as "your mom" and again as another unrelated woman.
  • Total Drama often uses prototype character designs for interns and other extremely minor background characters.
  • The first episode of Captain Planet and the Planeteers has Hoggish Greedly attack Captain Planet with a hose that spew toxic waste; it looks very similar to the neutrona wands on The Real Ghostbusters' proton packs (both series were made by DiC, although Captain Planet moved to Hanna-Barbera later on).
  • Lampshaded in Futurama when Farnsworth decodes an alien message using the same machine that was used to make glow-in-the dark fake noses earlier in the episode.
    Fry: Isn't that the machine that makes noses?
    Farnsworth: It can do other things! Why shouldn't it!?
  • Some of the models from TUGS were modified to create different characters, like Bluenose/Sea Rogue and Boomer/Sea Rogue's uncle. Years later, many of the props appeared on Thomas the Tank Engine - O.J. and Izzy Gomez were turned into generic boats, while Big Mickey the crane became a fixture in harbor scenes even after the move to CGI, eventually regaining the ability to speak in Season 21 (though with a face instead of a megaphone).
  • In the Bertha episode "The Burglars", the titular burglars are pretty clearly Ted and Alf.
  • Gerry Anderson's New Captain Scarlet carries on the fine old Gerry Anderson tradition by having the futuristic-looking truck from the pilot episode show up in the background whenever named characters were driving on a freeway. There were also no less than three separate episodes whose plot involved a massive Russian super-tank, also from the pilot, being used to blow something up.
  • Trollhunters will have various models from Dragons: Riders of Berk reused in different episodes, including a viking ship, Heather's lamb-chops and a Maces and Talons board. Word of God confirms that they do not share a universe and that they are simply "office neighbors" from whom they "steal props."
  • The same brick backdrop texture from Pelswick was used in Braceface on several occassions.

  • It is common in the Furry Fandom for fursuiters to modify older suits and use them as new fursonas, or to buy older suits/fursonas from other fursuiters.


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