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Recurring Fanon Character

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A character created by a fan that becomes popular enough with the rest of the community to be used in other fan works. This may be an Original Character who really took off, or a character who emerged from general discussion within the fan community rather than any single fanwork. Some of these characters may receive the occasional Fandom Nod from the higher-ups, or even become actual characters in official works.

How are these characters born?

  • Urban Legend of Zelda or Pop Culture Urban Legends; these characters are created by false rumors; Herobrine originated as a rumor for the game Minecraft as a mob that would covertly follow the player and mess with their world. Even after Herobrine's creator said it was fake, Herobrine is still a popular character within the Minecraft community and is frequently referenced by Mojang.
  • Glitch Entity; due to the enigmatic and uncanny nature of glitches in video games, the glitches may inspire the creations of characters, especially in creepypasta. An example is Missingno from Pokémon Red and Blue, who is nothing but a code error in the game, yet fans treat it as an Eldritch Abomination.
  • A silly observation; what is otherwise a normal-looking picture ends up becoming another thing entirely, and it catches on. In Sonic Mania, a sprite of an upside-down Doctor Eggman in a spider robot looked like a different character, which led to creation of the character Omelette.
  • A community joke; a fandom In-Joke that led to the character becoming popular for the punchline, or for fuzzy feelings.
  • An Adapted Out reinterpretation; a character from the main work doesn't appear in an adaptation, so someone creates a fanwork involving them. This interpretation of the character becomes popular and is used in subsequent works based off the adaptation. Note that this is for a specific interpretation of the character; if the character appears in multiple fanworks based on the adaptation, but each has their own version of the character, it's not this trope.
  • Dummied and What Could Have Been characters, that fans have taken a liking to. Usually either given their own spin by artists, fanfic writers and etcetera. Although rarely, the entire fandom comes to a certain consensus with the characterization of said characters. Especially if the Dummied Out character had enough material to work with for fans. See also Fan-Preferred Cut Content.
  • A Fan-Created Offspring for a specific in-universe couple or pair of characters may take off for the characters' shippers.

See also Recursive Fanfiction and Memetic Mutation. Compare Fanon, when canon characters are given recurring interpretations by fandom, and O.C. Stand-in, where a canon character who's a blank slate is given characterization by the fanwork.

If a character or idea becomes part of the official work, it turns into Ascended Fanon.

No porn characters, please. Keep it family friendly.


Example Sub-pages:


Examples (sorted by the medium of the original work)

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    Advertising 
  • Mr. Rental, an Australian furniture/appliance rental service, has Mr. Own, an Evil Counterpart to Mr Rental featured in videos by SiIvaGunner. Mr. Rental and Own in the videos became so popular that the business is best known for being referenced by the channel.
  • Samsung Sam is a personification of Samsung's virtual assistant designed by the visual arts production group Lightfarm. She became an internet sensation, featured in memes, art, and Rule 34, becoming so popular that many thought that she was an official design.

    Anime and Manga 
  • This anthropomorphic design of Lucifer The End (dubbed "Lucy") was born from mockery within the Beyblade Burst fandom. Created to mock Hasbro’s version of the Beyblade, she quickly took off and became a hit within certain Discord Beyblade communities. Ever since Lucy's success, Sands drew additional artwork of her and the World Beyblade Organization considers Lucy their unofficial server mascot.
  • Chainsaw Man: The Sloppy Blowjob Devil is a fanmade devil who fans joke Kobeni has a contract with, as her canon devil contract is unknown. There are many memes from fans about the Sloppy Blowjob Devil and Kobeni's contract with it.
  • Death Note: Dark Yagami is the long lost twin brother of Light who first appeared in Light and Dark The Adventures of Dark Yagami, a So Bad, It's Good Crack Fic. Dark is depicted as a Marty Stuinvoked, superior to his brother in every way. He has appeared in other fics, fanart, and parodies due to his original fic’s popularity.
  • Dragon Ball has Xicor, a fanmade character based on the rumors of the infamous hoax Dragon Ball AF, that became popular enough that Toyble adapted him for his doujinshi of Dragon Ball AF, and is still used in some fan works to this day. He is usually Goku's third son, or an evil clone of him.
  • Hetalia: Axis Powers Fans have created a lot of "2p!" characters, or Darker and Edgier versions of the countries that represent more negative stereotypes. The original 2p!s were created by Hidekaz Himaruya and have official designs, but fans have created many 2p! versions of countries that did not receive any. One of the most popular is 2p! Canada, who has longer hair than his original counterpart and a stubble. He usually wears flannel and sunglasses or a Mountie uniform. He is a gruff and manly outdoorsman.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
    • Jouta Kujo is the son of Jotaro and Kakyoin who hatched from an egg laid by Kakyoin. He first appeared in a CLAMP doujin and became widely memed due to the absurdity of his birth and character.
    • Haruno Higashikata is an original character based off of what would have happened if the other half of the Kira/Josefumi exchange survived. He became incredibly prolific, with people claiming that he had always existed, editing him into shots and claiming that if you didn't know him you were faking reading Part 8.
  • Little Witch Academia (2017): Mirror Akko, an alternate version of Akko based on her reflection in episode 12, tends to appear a bit in fan art and fan works. Unsurprisingly, she often serves as an Mirror Self and/or an Evil Counterpart to Akko whenever she appears in fan works. There is also Mirror Diana, who is based on Diana's own reflection in the same episode and provides the same roles to Diana that Mirror Akko does to Akko.
  • My Hero Academia: Mikumo Atakani was the original design for Izuku. He is a character in many fanfics, sometimes as an alter ego or alias for Izuku, and other times as his brother, clone, or an alternate universe counterpart.
  • Pokémon: The Original Series: Ashley was just Ash Disguised in Drag to get into a gym that he'd been banned from. That hasn't stopped some people from making Ashley a separate character on her own, ranging from an alternate universe counterpart to a Genderbent Ash.
  • "Truck-kun" is an anthropomorphized representation of the Look Both Ways trope as it appears in anime and manga, especially when it comes to how surprisingly sudden it can threaten the lives of or kill main characters. Its most popular incarnation is based on the vehicular accidents memetically known to start Reincarnate in Another World stories. The overuse of the trope has led to stories that either portray Truck-kun as a Memetic Psychopath who kills people for fun, a Psychopomp-like character whose job is to ferry isekai protagonists to their new lives, a Reluctant Monster or tragic figure who keeps running into people no matter how much they try to stop, or some combination of the three. In addition to the typical isekai and drama variants, Truck-kun is also portrayed as an anomaly that inexplicably appears when loved ones or extras step out into the road, specifically so an important character can either save them or die trying.
  • The Corner is treated as Truck-kun's romance-oriented counterpart. Representing the archetypal Crash-Into Hello, the Corner shows up whenever two people (and it can be any two people) happen to be running in intersecting directions so they can have a Meet Cute and fall in love. Unlike Truck-kun, however, the actions of the Corner are never seen, as most images depicting it usually stop before the couple-to-be makes impact.

    Comic Books 
  • The DC Comics fandom has Hope Corgi, an animal sidekick of the Blue Lanterns who wields one of their rings, powered by hope. He is meant to be a Good Counterpart of Dex-Starr, the Earth cat member of the Red Lanterns. He resembles the childhood dog of those he appears before, and inspires a sense of calm in everyone he meets.

    Films — Animation 
  • Inside Out: While many of the Emotion Original Characters tend to grasp concepts that the movie didn't focus on — most commonly romantic relationships — the most popular ones are the ones that were originally meant to be included:
    • Gloom. Most of the depictions of the character tend to lean closely towards the original concept; a large male figure with dark sunglasses and a suit, usually stylized after a black stormcloud. They are Sadness' Evil Counterpart more often than not.
    • Hope is a character that people have latched onto, mostly to fill the lack of an orange emotion. She's Always Female and often stylized after a firefly, usually acting as a Foil and moderator to Joy and Sadness, being more realistic than Joy while more idealistic than Sadness.
    • Pride gets a bit of recognition. His personality is often depicted as someone who acts higher and more important than they actually are, which often leads to being either an Anti-Villain or a Spear Counterpart to Disgust. His color is most often white and he was originally stylized after a worm.
    • Surprise is less popular the other scrapped emotions, but gets recognition for being Adapted Out from the original Six Basic Emotions. Her color is often pink and she's often made to be the Distaff Counterpart to Fear.
  • The Lion King:
    • The Lion King fandom has Tanabi, the name used for Simba and Nala's son that was popularized in the fanfiction Chronicles Of The Pride Lands, written before the release of the sequel, which showed the cub at the end to be a daughter instead. He went on to be used in many more fan-fictions despite the sequel, due to inconsistencies between the depiction of the cub presented at the end of the first movie and baby Kiara's presentation in the second, often shown to be a lost, killed, or kidnapped son who might later return, but gradually fell out of favor as more people found out about Kopa, the son of Simba and Nala who actually appeared in the Expanded Universe books The Lion King: Six New Adventures, though some people just included them both. This also isn't getting into the much later advent of Kion.
    • The Lion King: Kiara's Reign popularized Koda, Leah, and Asha as Kiara and Kovu's children.
    • Fan-artist Savu0211 is the creator of several popular fan-characters, including Azra, a Scar/Zira fan-child, and Baridi.
    • Kuzimu and Azola are two popular fan-characters meant to be Zira's parents, to the point where they're mistaken for canon by some fans. Azola is a blue-eyed, lighter-furred Zira, while her mate Kuzimu is a dark-furred lion. Azola is a sweet Good Parent and Kuzimu is a cruel Abusive Parent, who is frequently depicted as having killed Azola.
    • Timira is a lioness cub that's supposedly from an early draft of the second film. According to one website, Timira was the Love Interest to Simba's cut son Chaka and was in an Arranged Marriage to him. The quotes have never been properly sourced and are most likely someone's fan ideas passing as official; despite the source likely being fake, Timira has caught on and Chaka/Timira is a semi-common Beta Couple to Kiara/Kovu.
  • Hercules: The Fanfiction community loves introducing Persephone, the Goddess of Spring and the traditional Queen of the Underworld, into what is most often a sequel to the movie. She and Hades always get their mythology canon Happily Married status by the end. The Trope Codifier for most of these was probably Hope Springs Eternal. Given that it is already The Theme Park Version of Greek Mythology, certain parts of the story considered "unsavory" to modern palates (such as Persephone being both Hades' niece, daughter of Zeus and Demeter, and a teenager) are reworked or ignored according to the wishes of the author.
  • Shrek: Brogre memes frequently feature Drek, a blue Evil Knockoff of Shrek, as their equivalent of Satan. Because Lord Farquaad is also an antagonistic figure in Brogre "mythology", his relationship with Drek varies Depending on the Writer, from Drek being a disguise for Farquaad to Farquaad being The Dragon to Drek.
  • The Sword in the Stone: The film is somewhat notable for the scene in which a female squirrel, who had fallen in love with Wart in his squirrel form, becomes heartbroken when she discovers he's really a human. Feeling sorry for her, someone wrote a fanfic in which Wart convinces Merlin to turn her into a human and help her adjust to her new life. The character, often called Hazel, is pretty popular in fan works. Some fics make her the counterpart to Guinevere, King Arthur's wife from the myths.
  • "Starboy" from Wish (2023). The movie involves a Sentient Star that comes to Earth, looking like a stelliform plushy with the mind of a child. However, when it came out that earlier drafts of the film had the star turn into a human boy and become Asha's Love Interest, the fandom grabbed the idea so hard that it's rare to see any canon content. "Starboy" (who may be given another name) is typically a Pretty Boy with dark skin and white or golden hair, as in the concept art. His personality can vary, but he's generally quirky and energetic. Also, the song "At All Costs," sung between Asha and the villain, is so weirdly romantic that it's often assumed to have been written for Asha and Starboy; naturally, you can find a thousand animatics of them singing it.
  • It's somewhat well known that there have been a few prototype ideas of Zootopia before they well, stuck with Zootopia. Naturally this lends to a few characters that were formerly just Dummied Out or What Could Have Been cast members being inserted into fanfics, fan comics, and even fan art of their own. Either based on their original characteristics or the artists taking their own spin on said characters. There's also quite a few fan characters that have gotten popular on their own right.
    • Jack Savage and Skye Winters, are one of the most popular of these What Could Have Been characters, coming from the Savage Seas version of early Zootopia. A male jackrabbit spy and a female arctic fox mechanic, usually they act as gender-flipped counterparts for the One True Pairing of Judy and Nick, and thus are shipped together quite frequently as a result. Although that doesn't mean either of them aren't exempt from being shipped with Judy and Nick.note  Some artists go out of their way to go even further and go for an One True Threesome note  or Polygamy thing with all four characters.
    • The Conspiracy Theorist honey badger, Honey Badger, is also quite popular with the fans. A character whom was conceived during the early Zootopia prototype where Shock Collars were given to Predators, but was cut for the full movie. It's not uncommon for her to be shipped with Nick in fanart.

    Films — Live-Action 

    Literature 
  • Harry Potter:
    • It's very common in Flash Forward Fics to have a minor character named after Colin Creevey, with the implicit understanding that his father is Colin's brother, Dennis.
    • My Immortal: Ebony Dark'ness Dementia Raven Way appears in many fan works that parody the original fic. Her popularity has transcended fanfiction, as she has appeared in fan art, comics, web videos, and many other works.
  • Within the old-school prose Sherlock Holmes fandom, Sherlock and Mycroft Holmes have an eldest brother named Sherrinford, never mentioned in Conan Doyle canon because he stays on his country estate. He came about because of implications that Sherlock comes from the landed gentry, which means in Victorian social terms that as well as Sherlock and Mycroft there must be a third eldest brother who inherited the family landholding. The name "Sherrinford" comes from Doyle's reported first name for Sherlock in early drafts. This is well-known enough to get a Meta Twist in the fourth season of Sherlock, in which a "Sherrinford" is mentioned but turns out not to be a third Holmes sibling or a person at all.
  • The Twilight Saga:
  • Amongst Warrior Cats, the Troll Fic StarKitsProphcy is well-known. Stargleam, the story's notorious Master of All protagonist, appears in many other fan-works.
  • The Witcher: Milena de Roggeven, a character originally appearing in The Accidental Warlord And His Pack shows up in many other Witcher fics, including the series Wolfblood which is by the same author.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Breaking Bad has a bizarre one provided by The Inverse Law of Fandom Levity with Heisenbones, Walt and Jesse's skeletal sidekick who was always there but has either being edited out or no one seems to remember. Depending on the meme, he can either be a Plucky Comic Relief always making skeleton-puns in inappropriate moments or the Greater-Scope Villain who was truly behind Walter White's actions.
  • Fear the Walking Dead: Elyza Lex is the focus of a lot of the fanfiction, fanvids, and fan art for the show. However, she never actually appears in the show, and was in fact a complete creation by this fandom and that of The 100, as a stand-in for Eliza Taylor (or rather her character Clarke from The 100). Most of these are in fact shipping motivated, as Alicia's actress, Alycia Debnam-Carey, played Clarke's main love interest Lexa on The 100. So when Lexa died, a large portion of the "Clexa" shippers invented a character who they thought Taylor would play on FTWD, and from there the character just took on a life on its own.
  • Glee: Jack Harmon is an Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist OC popular in the fandom who originated from The Harmon Verse, a series of fan works centered on the character. The Fan Verse includes over 40 stories by various authors.
  • Once Upon a Time has an odd one in the form of Hope Swan-Mills, who is technically based on an actual character in the show, Hope Swan-Jones, but is often reimagined into a Fan-Created Offspring for Emma Swan and Regina Mills. Following the final episode revealing that Emma has a daughter named Hope with Hook, it became the go to that used that name for any child of Emma and Regina in fanfics. Some even go as far as making the canon one into Regina's kid instead of Hook's, but most of the time it's just simply using the name for an OC.
  • After the first season of Sherlock aired, the fandom speculated about who Jim Moriarty's associates might be, and came up with a modernized version of Sebastian Moran, Moriarty's second-in-command in the original Sherlock Holmes stories who appeared in numerous Sherlock fanfics. A minor villain named "Moran" eventually appeared in "The Empty Hearse", but has nothing in common with the Conan Doyle character, and the show's version of Mary Morstan ends up being a Composite Character of Moran, her Conan Doyle original, and the unnamed woman who killed Charles Augustus Milverton. Many fans were disappointed by his appearance in canon and continued writing fics of their own interpretation. He was most commonly shipped with Moriarty.

    Multi-Media 
  • The Godzilla franchise has Red, a shapeshifting monster who debuted in NES Godzilla Creepypasta and has appeared in several fanworks since. To a lesser extent, his mortal enemy, Solomon, sometimes appears as well.
  • This is the essence of Jenny Everywhere, an "open source fictional character" who primarily appears in Internet media. Depending on the Writer, she either exists in every possible universe or is able to freely travel between universes. She's shown up in everything from Atop the Fourth Wall to The Infinite Loops to nudist webcomics.
  • The Slender Man Mythos: Splendorman is Slender Man's friendlier brother, who wants to spread happiness rather than suffering. He is part of the genre "Happypasta", a parody of Creepypasta that contains Lighter and Softer versions of Creepypasta characters. He gained a lot of popularity due to his friendly design and contrast with his brother. His popularity led to the creation of other parody relatives of Slender Man, including Trenderman and Sexual Offenderman.

    Music 
  • Avril Lavigne has one in Melissa Vandella. According to a popular conspiracy theory, Avril died in 2003 and was replaced by a Melissa, a body double.
  • The Beatles have a rare example of this for a real life group. Conspiracy theories sprung up claiming that Paul McCartney died in a car crash and was replaced by a look-alike. The look-alike is usually claimed to be named "William Campbell" or "Billy Shears." He supposedly won a Paul look-alike contest and was chosen to replace him to spare the public from the grief of his death and allow the Beatles to continue performing.

    Podcasts 
  • The Adventure Zone: Graduation: A reddit post cataloging every character introduced into the campaign added a very Mary-Sueish hairless cat character named Bingus during one of the later episodes as a personal joke to the reader, and the fanbase decided to adopt this character as though they were an actual NPC in Graduation, complete with fanfiction and art for them.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer 40,000 has several popular characters and even sub-factions (usually Astartes Chapters) created on the /tg/ board:
    • Cultist-chan is a character created by gender-flipping a Dawn of War Chaos Cultist into a Moe girl, keeping the weird voice but otherwise making her adorable.
    • The Angry Marines are an entire semi-parodic Chapter of Imperium of Man Space Marines themed on Unstoppable Rage (their motto is "ALWAYS ANGRY, ALL THE TIME"), who even had fanrules made for the tabletop game.
    • The Reasonable Marines, probably the complete antithesis of the Angry Marines or even the Imperium as whole, due to the fact that they fully drop the xenophobia that's rampant throughout the Imperium of Man and especially the Adeptus Astartes. They're willing to negotiate first with their enemies (Chaos-worshipping heretics and Vile Xenos alike) instead of going guns blazing, and if negotiations fail, well, Power Armor-wearing Super Soldiers that employ actual and practical military tactics in combat can be a rather formidable force.
    • Several characters birthed from the /tg/ boards were later immortalized via a single reference in canon books, such as Adept Grendel, a non-combat character from a group of fans' Dark Heresy game who nevertheless managed to pull off some ridiculously lucky rolls to slay several giant monsters, LIIVII, a Vindicare sniper from a fanfic who fell in love with an Eldar, and Commissar Sterne, a commissar who uses Car Fu against all enemies regardless of how appropriate the vehicle is to ramming.

    Theatre 

    Toys 
  • BIONICLE has Voriki, the Toa of Energy. Originally created as part of a fan contest, Voriki was never actually accepted into canon, unlike numerous other characters. Despite this, Voriki is still remembered by the fanbase, and often finds his way into fanfics.

    Visual Novels 
  • Ace Attorney: While depictions of him differ, in many fan-works involving the Gavin siblings Klavier and Kristoph, their father is invariably named "Kurtis".

    Web Animation 
  • Happy Tree Friends: Ale is a grey wolf character created by AleEvilSoldier on DeviantArt. She became so popular that some fans mistook her for a canon character.
  • Helluva Boss has Ackerhells' Francesco, a parrot demon and boyfriend/future husband to Octavia. The fandom latched onto him for being an unproblematic love interest for her and for being a genuinely Nice Guy. His popularity only grew as Acker's later art would start fleshing out his own family and their relationship with the Goetias, to the point of being seen as secondary canon by some fans.
  • RWBY:
    • Tsune, a sadistic fox faunus who serves as the head of medical staff at Beacon Academy in many Coeur Al'Aran stories, first originating in Professor Arc. She would go on to be popular enough to appear in other fan works within the community, even those that share little overlap in plot or tone with the aforementioned fanfic.
    • Bleiss Schnee, a raven-haired "mirror" version of Weiss, with her main traits being her loud vulgarity and insatiable horniness for Jaune. Depending on the writer, Bleiss tends to either replace Weiss's existence wholesale or be her black sheep twin sister, though some have also depicted her as a split personality.

    Web Original 
  • Jeff the Killer: Jeff the Hugger is the Happypasta version of Jeff the Killer, similar to Splendorman. He is Jeff the Killer’s cousin who loves giving hugs and spreading joy. He has rainbow eyes and a pet named Frown Cat, a parody of Smile Dog.
  • The Pico series, which runs on fan-made movies and games, has few recurring characters not made by its creator, Tom Fulp:
    • Piconjo, originally created as an Author Avatar for the Newgrounds user of the same name, who is Pico's tall and pale Evil Counterpart. Despite varying quality of the flashes he originally starred in, many liked him for his Evil Is Cool personality and a being a huge source of Fanfic Fuel, in form of his relashionship to Pico. While neither Piconjo the user or Tom Fulp think of him as a canon to main Pico series, the latter considers him to be an interesting part of the Newgrounds history, which was the reason why the character was included in Newgrounds Rumble. In that game, Piconjo was given a redesign by Jose "MindChamber" Ortiz, without the involvement of his creator, and while the user Piconjo disowned said design in favour of his classic depictions, it was well-recieved by the fans. If this character shows up in a fan work, he is likely going to be based on his Newgrounds Rumble appearance.
    • While not to the same degree as Piconjo, Pico's cousin Otis of Pico's Cousin has been widely accepted as family to Pico and has also appeared in fan art and flashes, including as a cameo in Pico vs Convict as a form Convict takes on to throw Pico off his game.

    Web Video 
  • Sanders Sides: "King Creativity/Romulus" (Roman and Remus before the split) appear in some fanworks, either in a flashback or in a fanmade ending showing the twins putting their differences aside for good and becoming one Side again. Note that "The Split" is never really elaborated upon, being only used as an explanation as to why Thomas has two different types of Creativity, as explained by Logan. In Human AUs, the King is often portrayed as Roman's and Remus' father.

    Websites 
  • Wikipe-tan is a Moe Anthropomorphism version of Wikipedia who became extremely popular among users of the wiki. She is seen as an unofficial mascot of the website.

    Western Animation 
  • The Amazing World of Gumball:
  • Codename: Kids Next Door: Lechar, the Nega Universe version of Numbuh 362, is extremely popular in the fandom, as she was planned for "Operation P.O.O.L", but was ultimately scrapped from the final episode. If a story involves the Nega Universe in some way, chances are that Lechar will be present, usually depicted as a devoted follower of Negative Numbuh 4 and trying to bring him back into power.
  • The Danny Phantom fandom has Wes Weston, an OC made from a lanky background character that looked a lot like Danny and whose name was taken from Sam misreading a ring inscription (she read it upside-down and thought "Sam" was "Wes"). In fanon, the whole of Amity Park is convinced that Weston is the true identity of Danny Phantom, the thought of which drives Weston nuts—not helped sometimes by Fenton making fun of Weston's inability to show everyone the truth.
  • The Daria fandom has a few, aside from its many O.C. Stand-ins:
    • Danielle Todds is an attractive girl used as a Love Interest for Quinn, assuming you want her to like girls but not wind up with a canon character. She's also the cousin of Trent's bandmate Nick.
    • Veronica Morgendorffer was created for a mini-fic with the premise that Daria wakes up to find a third Morgendorffer sister, who looks like Quinn but has Daria's glasses and personality. Everyone acts like she's always been there, leaving Daria confused if she's being pranked or has gone crazy. Some stories use her seriously, others just make a Running Gag that Daria can't remember having another sister.
    • "Judith" and "NegaJane" are evil versions of Daria and Jane who go to multiple universes and kill their local counterparts.
    • Jim Vitale is a senior partner at Helen's firm, an Amoral Attorney and often a Magnificent Bastard villain. Sometimes he has a Villainous Crush on Helen.
  • Gravity Falls:
    • Many of the characters in the Fan Verse Reverse Falls AU, a particularly popular Alternate Timeline setting for the series in which many characters swap roles and personalities, appear in several fanfics and stories; the most notable are the swaps for the show's protagonists, Dipper and Mabel Gleeful, who are used in most Alternate Universe stories even when the Reverse Falls representation is otherwise pretty minor.
    • While Bill Cipher is a canon character, two versions of him are commonly used in fanwork, sometimes even overshadowing the original: There's Bipper, a.k.a. Bill after pulling a Grand Theft Me on Dipper, who in canon is just that, with his name being a simple one-off joke made by Mabel. The fandom frequently uses this character as a separate entity from Dipper, usually one of Bill's forms, or seperate him from Bill outright. The other is Human!Bill, and while humanization and Self-Fanservice is something that happens frequently in other fandoms, it happens to Bill often enough that his human form could be considered a seperate character outright, with a deliberately more sympathetic portrayal for the fangirls.
    • Another character who was quite popular to use in fanfic is "Lebam", Mabel's "secret second twin", who came from a surprisingly popular theory after someone noticed an animation error in the episode "The Deep End", where Mabel's name was written backwards for whatever reason. With a show that's practically a plantation for Epileptic Trees, many took this simple error to be a hidden clue about a doppelganger of Mabel. What makes this especially egregious is that it actually makes sense, given that "Double Dipper" introduced a copier that can create imperfect duplicates of human beings, so it isn't too farfetched to think that someone like Mabel would duplicate herself out of boredom. Most stories surrounding her also feature Dipper's clone "Tyrone" and Sev'ral Timez, as well as other original clone characters, to give An Aesop about why Clones Are People, Too.
    • Another character who took off in an unusual way is Tad Strange, after a character with that name was said to be voiced by Cecil Baldwin of Welcome to Night Vale fame. Due to his unusual name and comments by Teasing Creator Alex Hirsch note , plenty of people immediately built a connection between this character and Bill, portraying him as a square-shaped, purple Dream Demon, with a bowler hat, a tie, an umbrella and a goat pupil, directly contrasting Bill (or, as described in Hirsch's words, "as much as Doctor Who and Jack Skellington as possible"). He's usually portrayed as Bill's brother, though the depiction varies if they are Cain and Abel or a Sibling Team, and if "Tad" is more sympathetic or not. However, the character became less used after it was cleared up that the character with that name was simply an extreme case of The Generic Guy. Some still use the character under the name "Dot Matrix" or outright combine him with the canon Tad Strange, by saying that "Tad" is actually his disguise or puppet.
  • In the Kim Possible fic A Small Possibility, Shego and Kim have twins named Sheki and Kasy. Following the fic's publication, the two are the go-to kids used in many Kid Fics and Spin-Offspring involving the paring.
  • Looney Tunes: Big Chungus originated from an image of an obese Bugs Bunny (mocking a similarly-obese Elmer Fudd) from the short Wabbit Twouble and has become quite the Memetic Badass. While originally just Bugs, many fans act as if Big Chungus is his own unique character, which was obliged in Looney Tunes: World of Mayhem.
  • In The Loud House, there is a popular community with a wide variety of fanart and fanfiction involving the "Sin Kids", children Lincoln had with his sisters. While they have set names, designs, and some personality traits, everything else varies from person to person, as the creators of the AU encourage everyone to roll with their own ideas for them.
  • Miraculous Ladybug:
    • In the original pilot short, Cat Noir was a boy named Félix; he was scrapped and replaced with Adrien when the show began actual production, as the creator decided Félix was too cliché and unpleasant. Fans still loved him either way, and in fanfic, Félix often appears as Adrien's older/twin brother, who may have been his predecessor as Cat Noir or is even sharing the role with him. Félix's continual popularity eventually got him an appearance in the show, in which he's Adrien's cousin but in no way a Cat Noir.
    • To go with Félix, fans created Bridgitte, who is supposedly Marinette's counterpart from the pilot short. In reality "Bridgitte" is just Marinette with a slightly different design, but as with Félix, fanfic often makes her and Marinette siblings.
    • At one point in the show's development, Ladybug and Cat Noir were going to fight alongside at least three other heroes: Mercury, Melodie, and Kid Mime. Fans have given them civilian names (Alan/Allan, Allegra, and Claude, respectively) and generally use them as Félix and Bridgitte's circle of friends.
    • In one of her Imagine Spots in the first season, Marinette names her three hypothetical children with Adrien Emma, Louis, and Hugo. Ever since, almost all stories that have those two getting together and having kids have those three names for the first three.
  • Monkie Kid has toy line-exclusive figures that frequently appear in fan work:
    • Spindrax, another female spider demon working for Spider Queen and an Evil Counterpart to Mei, is often depicting as a rival racer, and usually gets paired up with her in the end.
    • Rumble and Savage, two of Macaque’s shadow clones given sapience, frequently appear as fankids of his. Sometimes they’re lackeys who he eventually grew to love, other times they’re created specifically with the desire to be a father in mind.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • Cream Heart, Button Mash's mother from Button's Adventures, is so popular and recognized among the fanbase that she's used as the tag icon for "original character" on Derpibooru.
    • The protagonist of Fallout: Equestria, Littlepip, is a well known fan character in the Friendship is Magic fandom, in part due to the copious amount of Recursive Fanfiction Fallout Equestria spawned.
    • Fluffle Puff, a character that first appeared in the crossover ask blog Dan Vs. FIM, before becoming the comic's Breakout Character and getting her own series, Ask Fluffle Puff. She has since turned up in all manner of fan works.
    • Nyx, the filly clone of Nightmare Moon from Past Sins, gained a lot of popularity and fanart.
    • Apogee and her family are original ponies from the fancomic Delta Vee's Junkyard. They are popular enough to receive a lot of fanart.
  • The Owl House: Many fanworks tend to feature two characters known as Lucia Noceda and Amelia Blight, who are both based off of early concept designs for Luz and Amity, known in the fandom as the Beta versions, from back when they were meant to be older, and are usually portrayed as the two's older sisters in fanworks. Funny enough, there is an canon Amelia in the show, but she is just a random Hexside student whose only relation to Amity is being a member of her initial Girl Posse.
  • Phineas and Ferb: The go-to Fan-Created Offspring are Marie Flynn-Garcia-Shapiro, the daughter of Phineas and Isabella, and Thomas Fletcher, the son of Ferb and Vanessa. The two are frequently shipped with each other since their parents aren't blood siblings, and even have the ship Portmanteau Couple Name "Thomarie".
  • The Simpsons: Gumbly (also known as Graggle) is a fanmade character that many people photoshopped into images and scenes from the show, claiming that he was always there.
  • In the earliest days of the Sonic the Hedgehog internet fanbase, the characters Bookshire Draftwood, a raccoon doctor, and Packbell, a humanoid robot, showed up in quite a few fanfictions from different writers; one would be forgiven for thinking they were canon characters somehow linked to Sonic the Hedgehog (SatAM). In actuality they were both the creations of uber-fan David Pistone.

    Other 
  • Dartmouth College has no official mascot, but the college humor magazine the Dartmouth Jack-O-Lantern created Keggy the Keg, an anthropormorphic beer keg, as a possible mascot. While unofficial, he is popular and beloved within the college and an "ingrained part of Dartmouth culture."
  • Chiitan is an unofficial, self-declared otter mascot of Suzaki, Japan, famous for its strange and even violent antics. It became one of the most popular mascots in Japan and is well-known, albiet controversial, in its hometown.
  • Green Dam Girl is a Moe Anthropomorphism of China's controversial content-control software Green Dam Youth Escort.
  • Shiitake-chan is a Moe Anthropomorphism of Internet Explorer's Stop button, as its creator thought it looked like a shiitake mushroom.
  • Microsoft Windows operating systems have OS-tan, Moe Anthropomorphic personifications of various operating systems, web browsers, antivirus software, and other applications.

Alternative Title(s): Recurring Fan Character

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