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Rushmore Refacement

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"So that's their plan? They wanna put Krang's face up there and scare the country into submission!"

Villains, especially cartoon villains, are remarkably narcissistic and prone to childish vandalism. Whenever there's a landmark with a famous face on it, there's a good chance the villain will demonstrate his need for attention by putting their own face on it instead (or some ridiculous caricature of a real face, to emphasize their whimsicality). Mount Rushmore (an American landmark which features U.S. Presidents Washington, Jefferson, T. Roosevelt, and Lincoln) is an especially frequent target of this. The Statue of Liberty and the Great Sphinx of Giza are other popular venues for refacement.

An alternative, less sinister refacement would be simply adding more heads, either for parody purposes or of notable future presidents. Though this would be difficult, especially if the new heads are to the same scale as the existing ones because the best spots on the mountain are already taken.

Heroes sometimes do this, intentionally or not.

Compare Monument of Humiliation and Defeat, Monumental Damage, Deface of the Moon. Might overlap with Mock Hollywood Sign.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Naruto, the faces of the current and former Hokages are carved into the mountain behind Konoha. At the beginning of the series, there are only four, but as new ninja take on the role, the faces of Tsunade, Kakashi, and Naruto are added. It's also a frequent target for vandals, whether enemies of the village, or kid pranksters like Naruto.
  • Gamble Fish: Mister Abidani is challenged by the President of the United States to a game of Russian Roulette Poker. If the President wins, Abidani (or his corpse) is taken into the custody of the US government so they can study the code-breaking math formulas he tattooed on his skin. If Abidani wins, the President adds his face to Mount Rushmore. Abidani wins, and the epilogue of the series show his face on Mount Rushmore along with a blurb about the United States citizens being very upset and confused. The President can only say it was "for the sake of national security."
  • A cover illustration for Lupin III features Inspector Zenigata freaking out about Rushmore having the faces of Lupin and his gang.

    Comic Books 
  • In the first issue of the short-lived The Incredible Crash Dummies comic book, Junkman is temporarily made President and has his face added at the end of it.
  • During The DCU's Last Laugh Crisis Crossover, some of the Jokerized villains added Joker smiles to Mount Rushmore, the Statue of Liberty, and other landmarks. The Joker himself seemed to view this as too obvious to be funny.
  • The Joker:
    • The Joker got in on this during the Rock of Ages arc when he temporarily gained godlike power. Pretty much the first thing he did was to create a 10,000-mile-long Joker grin, causing huge earthquakes.
    • During the Emperor Joker storyline, the Joker acquires omnipotence again and remakes the world in his image including a cube-shaped Earth with the major landmasses on each side being shaped like his face. In a sense, this is ironically subtler than the above-mentioned statue gag since one has to be in space to see it.
  • Noted comic book author Peter David tends to do this. Terrorists bomb emotionally vulnerable parts of America, including half of Mount Rushmore. Then the Hulk, who hasn't quite been mentally stable in a while, smashes the rest of it to powder. It's restored by the Deus ex Machina "Molecule Man", who can do pretty much whatever he wants. Then some years later, Captain Marvel, a trained cosmically powered warrior, uses Rushmore to launch himself into Kree space (he had to power up to aim right as planets move). A few moments afterward... much of Rushmore crumbles. In the DC continuity, in Young Justice George's face exploded outwards as there was a secret base inside it.
  • The Wolverine Bad Future story "Old Man Logan" involved Hawkeye and Wolverine driving along the side of Mt. Rushmore while on their trip across the country. The two-page spread depicting this shows that supervillain and President Evil Red Skull has had his "face" added on the left side of the mountain.
  • A one-time chapter opening page joke in Bowling King had all of the faces on Mount Rushmore replaced with main character Shautieh Ley's face. Uh, four of them, that is.
  • Freedom Fighters (2018): The Nazi occupiers have carved the faces of their leaders over the original Mount Rushmore presidential sculptures. The new Freedom Fighters blow up this new Mount Rushmore on live TV as a propaganda blow to the Reich.
  • In Give Me Liberty, they added Quayle and Rexall.
  • The Judge Dredd story The Cursed Earth featured Jimmy Carter's face added to the end of the lineup. Lincoln's nose and Carter's teeth got smashed in the Monumental Battle with some mutants.
  • In Superman, during Brian Azzarello and Jim Lee's "For Tomorrow" arc, a sorceress using Elemental Powers created giants composed of fire, air, water, and earth to attack Superman. For the earth giant, she animated Mount Rushmore, turning it into a huge creature of living rock, speaking out of the four presidential heads.
  • Not in-story, but: the cover for a Dark Horse Comics anniversary paperback has a Rushmore of their characters (The Mask, Concrete, Grendel and a Predator).
  • Grendel shows Mt. Rushmore as sporting additional heads in the Orion Asante era.
  • For a time, the National Geographic Kids magazine featured a comic/puzzle called "Can You Rescue Flash Hawkins?" starring a young reporter, and readers had to help her escape from a sticky situation at the end of each short comic. One of these featured the bad guys (known as the "Nubbins Gang") using a gigantic spray paint cannon to vandalize the faces on Mount Rushmore.
  • A heroic variation in the first ''Jughead's Time Police'' story, January Andrews (Archie's descendant from the future) tells Jug that he'll become so famous that his face will be added to Rushmore.
  • A Spy Kids comic printed in Disney Adventures had the inverse: the bad guys planned to pull off the entire sculpture, place it onto a robot body, and make a gigantic Presidents robot. What they were they going to do with it? Even they didn't know...
  • In a Silver Age story, Lois Lane and Lana Lang somehow gained superpowers, which among other things they used to carve self-portraits into rock formations in close vicinity of Mount Rushmore.
  • A Dr. Seuss political cartoon from five days after Pearl Harbor showed Hitler and Tojo carved into Rushmore as "Liberators of America." The caption: "Don't Let Them Carve THOSE Faces on Our Mountains! BUY UNITED STATES SAVINGS BONDS AND STAMPS!" The carvings of Mount Rushmore were still being worked on at the time, making this the Ur-Example.
  • In the Red She-Hulk storyline "Route 616", there is another Mount Rushmore existing out of phase with the regular universe, which contains an aspect of the Terranometer (a vast computer powered by the Earth's rotation). This mountain is carved into the faces of the four supervillains who, at different times, attempted to take control of the Terranometer: Red Skull, Ultron, Loki, and Doctor Doom.
  • In DC Comics, following the abovementioned damage to Mount Rushmore in Young Justice, it's mentioned that it will be repaired- with the addition of Lex Luthor's face. Subverted from the normal version of this trope in that Congress was the one that approved the redesign, in honor of various actions Luthor had done- even before his becoming President.
  • In the 2015 Bat-Mite comic series, the titular imp ends up replacing the presidents' faces with that of his own, Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman's.
  • The Transformers (Marvel) featured a story wherein the Battlechargers begin painting several national landmarks in alien graffiti that translates into "Humans are wimps!". Among the sites tagged are Mt. Rushmore and the Statue of Liberty.
  • Squadron Supreme: The brawl between the good Hyperion and his evil duplicate winds up going through Earth-712's version of Mount Rushmore (here named "President's Mountain", and with different faces from our world). Hyp clobbers his dupe with Lincoln's nose.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • Parodied in Ice Age: Continental Drift: When Scrat is bouncing around in the Earth's core, he inadvertently creates a Mount Rushmore style structure, the four heads being his faces wearing different expressions of pain.
  • The epilogue of Free Birds showed a photograph of Mount Rushmore with a turkey joining the Presidents.
  • More whimsical version appears in the credits of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs with the faces of Flint, Sam, Steve, and Tim replacing the presidents.
  • In Home (2015), the Boov manage to reface pretty much every monument with the face of their leader Smek, on top of levitating them all. All the monuments are put back and restored once the Boov make peace with the humans.
  • In Asterix Conquers America as Asterix, Obelix, and Dogmatix first arrive in America, there is a shot showing Mount Rushmore with the faces of Native American chiefs in place of the presidents. Since this takes place in 50 BC, this is an odd subversion where the "refaced" Rushmore is around before the real one.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Mars Attacks!, the Martians replace all faces of Mount Rushmore with their own.
  • Superman II. The three Kryptonian supervillains fly over Mount Rushmore and use their heat vision to reshape three faces and destroy the last (President Lincoln) so only their own visages are present.
    US President: Thousands of hours to create and they defaced it in seconds. Imagine what they'll do to the world if we resist!
  • In Batman Forever, Two-Face defaces "Lady Gotham" (a Statue of Liberty stand-in and a Mythology Gag to the comics).
  • In Richie Rich the Riches avoid the evil route and make their own "Mount Richmore" with their faces, instead of refacing the existing one. A rare case where the characters are nice enough not to ruin a national monument but narcissistic (and rich) enough to feel the need to make one of their own (it does cover their vault). However, Regina mentions that "Mount Richmore" was their sculptress' idea, and Richard even lampshades how pretentious it is (though he seems more concerned over how his cheeks look "puffy"). The 'Richmore' is eventually blasted to bejeebers by villains trying to kill the heroes.
  • Part of the Viral Marketing for the Watchmen film includes an informational video about the Keene Act which reveals the heads one at a time and fourth is not Lincoln but rather Richard Nixon. Yes, this makes little sense even given the Alternate History that Watchmen is in, just go with it. Also, it's not actually showing the monument, just an animated version, so it's possible it doesn't "really" look like that.
  • A deleted scene from the fifth Star Trek movie revealed that a fifth head — that of a black woman, named as Sarah Susan Eckert in the Novelization — had been added next to Washington sometime between now and the 23rd century.
  • The Great Dictator pulls a similar stunt with famous statues of the Thinker and Venus DiMilo.
  • The reverse of this is said to have happened in National Treasure; the creator of Mount Rushmore did so merely to cover up clues to a lost city of gold nearby, defacing what was originally there.
  • In The Return of Hanuman, Hanuman changed the face to his. He is of course the protagonist of the movie, but he's known to be naughty.
  • In The Muppets (2011), Mad Bomber Crazy Harry pulls this off.
  • In The Incredible Mr. Limpet, the eponymous character, who's been helping Allied ships track and sink German U-Boats, imagines himself getting a hero's welcome back home, complete with his head on Mt. Rushmore. By the way, he's a fish.
  • The final scene of Head of State has Gilliam's head added to the presidential lineup, with a shiny earring for good measure.
  • During his cross-country run, The Wizard of Speed and Time bumps into the "HOLLYWOOD" sign, changing it to "WHOLLY ODD." (Which isn't a proper anagram of "HOLLYWOOD", but oh well.)
  • Rakka. The alien invaders cover national monuments with the bodies of the dying; the Eiffel Tower is specifically shown.
  • Barbie: Barbieland has a Rushmore-like mountain that depicts the very first Barbie, Christie, Kira and Teresa dolls. Later, after Ken introduces his idea of "the patriarchy" to the land, the mountain now depicts four horses.

  • In Emperor Mollusk versus The Sinister Brain, Mollusk had his likeness added to Mount Rushmore on a whim.
  • Other Alternate History stories have replaced Liberty with "the Statue of Remembrance holding forth the sword of vengeance" (in Harry Turtledove's TL-191) or Britannia with her trident in cases where New York was reconquered by Britain at some point.
  • In the novelisation of Red Dwarf, it's mentioned that Mount Rushmore in the future has five presidents' heads, the fifth being Elaine Salinger.
  • In Nineteen Eighty-Four, the statue of Admiral Nelson in Trafalgar Square (renamed Victory Square) is replaced with… er... has always been one of Big Brother.
  • In The Prefect by Alastair Reynolds, some of the action takes place in an abandoned 'Amerikano' base. The decor includes some scenic panoramas, including
    "a rock face carved with enormous stone likenesses: eight vast heads, the fifth and seventh of which were women."
  • One tie-in storybook based on the film Cars had characters visiting Mount Rush Hour, which comprises of the stone faces of George Washingtire, Thomas Jefferswagon, Thefordoor "Tready" Cruisabout, and Abraham Lincoln.
  • Animorphs has a kind of serious version: after the war, a senator suggested that Jake's face should be added to Mount Rushmore.
  • In Missile Gap (link) by Charles Stross, Colonel-General Gagarin on his return leg on the giant ekranoplan Korolev exploring alternate worlds discovers a Rushmorean monument to Lenin, Stalin… and a third rather different entity.
  • One poem in Shel Silverstein's Runny Babbit features the eponymous lagomorph going up Mount Rushmore and adding a rabbit's head to the piece.
  • The Lord of the Rings. The crossroads on the road to Minas Morgul was originally guarded by the statue of a former king. By the time Frodo and Sam pass that way, the statue's original head has been replaced with a rock painted as a grinning cyclops, presumably intended to represent Sauron, and the body of the statue is covered with foul orc scribbling. The Army of the West on its way to the Black Gate, makes a point to restore the statue's old head and cleanse the stone to affirm Gondor's reclamation of its ancient lands.

    Live-Action TV 
  • During The Colbert Report's visit to Philadelphia, the large 'window' (plasma screen) behind the interview desk, which usually displays a stained glass window or view of New York, occasionally showed a slightly altered version of Mt. Rushmore. No prizes for guessing who the fifth face was.
  • Referenced by Jon Stewart in The Daily Show when Barack Obama was accused of being "elitist" during the 2008 election season:
    You're running for a job where, if you do it really well, they carve your face into the side of a mountain! If you don't think you're better than us, what the fuck are you doing?!
  • Doctor Who:
    • Not actually Mt. Rushmore, but inspired by it. In "The Face of Evil", the Doctor sees his own face carved into a cliff on Leela's (unnamed) home planet.
    • Martha mentions that the Master has added his face to Mount Rushmore in "Last of the Time Lords". We never get to see this but we do see a huge statue of him made out of stone elsewhere.
  • Averted in Life After People, Mt. Rushmore will outlast every other creation of mankind.
  • In one episode of Night Court, Judge Stone was planning to hang-glide onto the Statue of Liberty and put an enormous pair of Groucho glasses on it. He never actually did it.
  • Joked about by Elaine in Seinfeld in "The Watch". She claims that her face has replaced Teddy Roosevelt's. Ironically, the poster for the series Veep actually invokes this trope with Julia Louis-Dreyfus's face, except it replaces Jefferson's instead.
  • A minor version in Supernatural; when Castiel has delusions of godhood in "Meet the New Boss", he changes the stained glass windows in a church from an image of Jesus to one of himself.
  • Done as a sight gag at the end of a 2010 episode of Wheel of Fortune, with host Pat Sajak's head replacing Lincoln's.
  • In Years and Years, Donald Trump's head has been carved into Mount Rushmore by 2027.


    Tabletop Games 
  • In Erde, the Nazis-won world in the Freedom City setting, the Presidents were replaced by Hitler, Mussolini, Hirohito, and Superior, but the faces were then obliterated altogether by La Résistance.
  • Done in an interesting way by La Capitan in Sentinels of the Multiverse. As La Capitan's gimmick is Time Travel, she likely altered the monument as it was being built, just to taunt the heroes...

    Theme Parks 

    Video Games 
  • Pilotwings 64 allows you to do a little Rushmore Refacement of your own. One level includes Mt. Rushmore, plus Mario's face to the left of the presidents'. Shooting Mario's nose will morph the face into Wario's.
  • In a weird usage in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, Liquid Ocelot's base/submarine seems to have a pastiche of Mt. Rushmore on its hull, with the faces of Big Boss and his clones on it. Not only is it never explained, it appears for only a three-second shot.
  • In the final act of Marvel Ultimate Alliance, you visit a version of Stark Tower (which was your base in the first part of the game) in a world run by Dr. Doom. The giant hologram of Iron Man in Tony Stark's lab has been replaced by... guess who?
  • Command & Conquer:
  • One of the ending pictures you can get in The King of Fighters '98 Ultimate Match is a Rushmore Refacement featuring Geese Howard, Krauser, and Mr. Big.
  • In Brütal Legend, you can carve the faces of various characters into Mt. Rockmore. The first time you do this, you replace the face of General Lionwhyte. Later, after you defeat Lionwhyte, Dovinculus will change Mt. Rockmore once more - to display his face. You can change it back again.
  • Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc: During the final class trial the Mastermind shows footage out of the outside world after "the Tragedy", and one of the scenes is a shot of several world monuments, including the Statue of Liberty and Tokyo Tower, with Monokuma's face added to them.
  • The protagonist of Number Munchers for the Apple computer changes Mt. Rushmore in one Cut Scene between levels.
  • Ape Escape 2's first level has you clearing monkeys out of Ellis Liberty Island, where the Statue of Liberty has been replaced by the statue of Monkey, complete with a banana-torch.
  • In Saturn Bomberman, you can see Mount Rushmore with the faces of Mr. Meanie and his gang go by in the background of the Rodeon battle. The ending sequence shows the presidents back up there and joined by Bomberman.
  • In Cave Story, there is a chamber off of the Plantation containing statues of The Doctor and the three prior wearers of the Demon Crown. Just before the fight against the True Final Boss, it's possible to revisit this chamber. Shooting the statues at this point will destroy them, revealing statues of four heroes: the player character, King, Toroko, and Curly Brace.
  • In Awesome Possum... Kicks Dr. Machino's Butt, the main character gets his head added to Mt. Rushmore in the ending.
  • Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare 2: The Zombopolis map has a version of the Statue of Liberty (probably not the real one) with Zomboss in the place of Lady Liberty.
  • Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins has this in Mario's castle. There's an M on it, but Wario inverts it.
  • In the ending of The Simpsons: Bart vs. the Space Mutants, the Space Mutants do the "addition" version of this to honor Bart, seeing him as a Worthy Opponent.
  • In a non-villainous example, one of the random news transmissions in Tomodachi Life has a monument being built for one of the Miis, which is Mount Rushmore with four versions of the face of said Mii.
  • The Game Over screen for Gremlins 2: The New Batch on Amiga has the Statue of Liberty replaced with a giant statue of a gremlin holding a lit stick of dynamite.
  • In one of the trailers for Wolfenstein: The New Order, the Nazis completely demolish Mt. Rushmore after America's surrender.
  • Mentioned jokingly in passing on an in-game TV show in Cyberpunk 2077, with Saburo Arasaka being the contemplative extra head on Mount Rushmore.

    Web Original 
  • In The Fire Never Dies, the KKK repurposes the incomplete Lincoln Memorial into the Nathan Bedford Forrest Memorial. The actual statue of Lincoln was still in the Bronx at the time, and is used for a new Lincoln Memorial in Central Park after the war.
  • Played for Horror in THE MONUMENT MYTHOS. The Western Terrorist group, the ADA, spreads what they call the "Infection" throughout three specific monuments in America, Mount Rushmore being one of them. This results in the monument being completely irrecognizable, with the faces of the founding fathers momentarily being able to move their eyes around before crumbling down as Special Trees came out of the top of their heads.
  • Played for laughs at the end of The Nostalgia Critic's review of Titanic: The Animated Musical, where he advertises some 'Geek Fight' cards, and wonders what he'll put his face on next. Cue three pictures, one with his face on Mount Rushmore, one with his face on the Statue of Liberty, and the final one having his face on Marilyn Monroe's body, in the iconic picture of her skirt flying up.
  • In The Dr. Steel Show Episode 2, a team of Toy Soldiers call Doctor Steel from the top of Mount Rushmore, informing him of their plans to alter Lincoln's head to look like Dr. Steel. It doesn't quite go according to plan...
  • Neil Cicierega's BRODYQUEST has the Adrien Brody Wave replacing various landmarks, including the face of the Sphinx, the faces of Barack and Michelle Obamas and the Blue Marble photo of the Earth, with Adrien Brody faces.
  • In Season 2 of The Tick (Netflix Series), Superian carves a statue of himself cradling a human into Devil's Tower, in a misguided attempt to re-ingratiate himself to humanity.

    Western Animation 
  • In the American Dad! episode "Honey, I'm Homeland", Stan is kidnapped by leftist terrorists who brainwash him into becoming an agent of theirs a la Homeland. Using his CIA access, he steals several missiles in order to rebuild Mount Rushmore into history's greatest leftists: Sean Penn, Michael Moore, and Captain Planet.note  Ultimately, the whole thing is a very convoluted ruse to test Rushmore's new missile defense system, installed purely because the CIA had extra money to spend. Only one of the terrorists was real; the other two were Jackson and Duper using elaborate CIA masks.
  • Futurama:
    • In the episode "When Aliens Attack", it's mentioned that New York once had a super-villain governor who stole the world's most famous monuments, including Mount Rushmore. A sight-gag reveals he added his face to it.
    • The statue of Abe Lincoln in his DC Memorial was at some point replaced with that of an alien conqueror sitting on a throne of human skulls.
    • They did a Statue of Liberty variant spoofing Planet of the Apes (1968) with the Statue of Liberty buried in the sand... next to an ape Statue of Liberty... next to a cow Statue of Liberty, next to a slug statue of liberty...
  • The Fairly OddParents! episode/TV movie Abra-Catastrophe! has Bippy, A.J.'s pet monkey, wishing the world to be a jungle and ruled by apes and monkeys, transforming Mount Rushmore to have gorilla versions of the Presidents. Later on, Crocker replaced the presidents with his own appearance on Mount Rushmore. note 
  • In Inside Job (2021), Ridley Reagan's face is carved over Roosevelt's by Glenn so she won't fire him.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987):
    • In one of the season finales of the first cartoon, it's revealed that the villains are headed towards Mt. Rushmore. Raphael theorized (and we're treated to his imagining) that Krang wanted to put his face on there and "scare the country into submission."
    • In the episode "Once Upon A Time Machine", the Turtles follow Shredder when he goes into the future, where he takes over the city while using a matter transformer as a show of power to demonstrate he means business, with one of the things he does is changing the Statue of Liberty into a statue of himself holding up a laser gun. The Turtles take extreme exception to this.
    Raphael: Hey! There's a serve penalty for defacing a national monument!
  • Transformers:
    • Played with in The Transformers episode "Triple Takeover", where Starscream and the Triple Changers carve their own counterpart to Rushmore (in a previously unaltered cliff-face in the middle of the desert), with visages of Megatron and themselves. Then they destroy the Megatron face.
    • In Transformers: Animated's Allspark Almanac II, Cobra Commander's is one of the two additional faces (well, insofar as his mask is his face) seen on Mount Rushmore. The other is Richard Nixon, as it happens. It's implied that Cobra Commander's presidency was completely legitimate, though.
  • Fantastic Four: The Animated Series:
    • In the Grand Finale, Dr. Doom gains cosmic power; on his rampage across the globe, he transforms the Statue of Liberty into a statue of himself.
    • One version of the opening has the FF themselves turning Rushmore into self-portraiture.
  • In Fantastic Four: World's Greatest Heroes, Dr. Doom also turned the Statue of Liberty into a statue of himself in a Time Travel episode when he took control of New York.
  • On Phineas and Ferb the protagonists do this in "Candace Loses Her Head". They add their sister Candace's face to the left of Abraham Lincoln's for her birthday. It doesn't last, being destroyed in a fight between Perry the Platypus and Dr. Doofenshmirtz.
  • The Joker in an episode of The Batman, using his patented "Joker Putty" to deface a famous Gotham City statue.
  • The Biker Mice from Mars episode "Stone Broke" had Limburger and his crew fired by Chairman Camembert and cut off of his funds. To get on his good graces again, the crew come up with the idea of adding the Chairman's head onto Mount Rushmore and teleport the whole thing to Plutark. Through the action of the protagonists, only the Chairman's head was teleported away, restoring the monument to normal.
  • In the Teen Titans (2003) episode "Revolution", Mad Mod turns the four Presidents into extremely ugly versions of the Beatles with his hair.
  • In the G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero episode "Worlds Without End", several of the Joes are blasted "sideways" into an Alternate History where Cobra Commander has beaten them. They find that every national landmark from The Lincoln Memorial to the Statue of Liberty now sports a Cobra operative's likeness.
  • The opening sequence of 2DTV had President Bush pushing the nuclear button, which causes his own carved head to emerge in the middle of Mount Rushmore, the top of its head to flip up, and a nuclear missile to come out.
  • In Gargoyles, Jackal imagines carving his own face into Goliath's stone form, not just as an ego trip, but most likely killing Goliath in the process.
  • In Danny Phantom, Freakshow used the Reality Gauntlet to warp...well, pretty much the whole world. Including changing the faces of Mount Rushmore to his own in various expressions.
  • In Metalocalypse, Mount Rushmore was vandalised with paint to protest Dethklok refusing to play a concert for a specific album (that was marketed to fish). At another point, the Louvre was burned to the ground for Murderface's birthday since he said that the paintings were shit.
  • In Men in Black: The Animated Series, the finale has the Worms suggest to Congress that Rushmore be refaced in their likeness. They never got a chance to make good on it.
  • In Centurions, there is an episode where it is mentioned adding Christ to Mount Rushmore. Those familiar with constitutional law know why this is hilarious.
  • In the finale of Ben 10: Ultimate Alien, the heroes wind up in an old Plumber base (from the first series) inside Mount Rushmore. When Vilgax attacks them, Gwen reveals the defense systems, including Eye Beams built into George's head. They then lament how hard it will be to hide the fact that Vilgax ripped Washington's face off.
  • In Ben 10: Omniverse's "Frogs of War" two-parter, after the Incurseans conquer Earth, they replace the Lincoln Memorial's head with Emperor Millious' head and replace the Statue of Liberty's head with Attea's.
  • Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog has Robotnik often building large statues (including a Great Sphinx with his face), then Sonic defaces them.
  • In the final episodes of The Legend of Korra's first season, the Equalist takeover of Republic City is accompanied by Amon's mask being placed over the Liberty-esque statue of Avatar Aang.
  • Kid vs. Kat: This is seen to have happened in the future after the kat invasion in "Kat to the Future", with the heads of the presidents having been replaced by those alien kats.
  • Yogi Bear does this with the park helicopter in "The Buzzin' Bear", though it's just his own likeness carved into a cliff.
  • The Simpsons
    • Lisa's face is carved on the side of a mountain near Springfield. Having placed second in the Spellympics, she has become Springfield's most successful native the town ever had.
    • In "Politically Inept, with Homer", one of the graphics on Gut Check with Homer Simpson replaces the faces on Mt. Rushmore with Mao Zedong, Doctor Doom, Ayatollah Khomeini, and Patty and Selma.
  • One episode of Dudley Do-Right had Snidely Whiplash carve a Mount Rushmore-esque image of his face in the mountains above the Mounty post. Inspector Fenwick orders Dudley to get rid of it. Dudley decides to do something better - he carves the image of his face next to it.
  • Drak Pack: In the episode "International Graffiti", Dr. Dred invents a device to put his face on monuments great and small, including the Moai heads on Easter Island, the Sphinx, and the little gargoyles decorating Dracula's bedroom. He's finally stopped when he tries to replace all four faces on Mt. Rushmore with his own.
  • Wacky Races (2017): In "It's a Wacky Life", it's revealed that, if Dick Dastardly didn't exist, Muttley would be the President and add his face to Mount Rushmore.
  • What If…? (2021): In "What If... Thor Were An Only Child?", Loki and the Frost Giants use the Casket of Ancient Winters to do some Mustache Vandalism on Mount Rushmore. When Thor cleans up the mess he and his friends caused, he undoes the vandalism by simply shattering the ice.
  • In the Spider-Woman episode "The Great Magini", the titular villain at one point steals the Presidents' stone heads from Mt. Rushmore and replaces them with illusions of his own head, though it later turns out that his vandalism of the landmark was itself an illusion.
  • An episode of Pinky and the Brain had the duo building a whole Earth out of papier-mache. Pinky is assigned with doing some monuments, and given it's Pinky, his Rushmore has Neil Sedaka, Nick Nolte, Abe Vigoda, and Abe Lincoln.
  • In the opening titles of The Addams Family (1973), the faces on Mt. Rushmore react and recoil in horror when they see the Addamses.
  • In the Fangface episode "The Invisible Menace Mix-Up", The Sky Ghost turns Mount Rushmore invisible, holding it for ransom from the US. When Fangs and Puggsy try to turn it back at the end, they have a number of mix-ups, including putting Teddy Roosevelt's head upside down and replacing it with Fangface's head - which terrifies Fangs. Eventually they get it back to normal.
  • Subverted by The Tick: Rather than replace Teddy Roosevelt's face, The Terror just punches it with a giant boxing glove.
  • The Fanboy and Chum Chum episode "The Last Strawberry Fun Finger" has Fanboy and Chum Chum argue over which of the two deserves the last of the titular snack food more. One of the arguments Fanboy makes in favor of Chum Chum getting the last Strawberry Fun Finger is that Chum Chum is so awesome, a hypothetical landmark called Mt. Awesomemore would have every face be one of Chum Chum, each one more awesome than the last. Chum Chum is then shown a picture of a version of Mt. Rushmore where all the faces are of Chum Chum.
  • In the "All the President's Menace" episode of Dennis the Menace, Dennis travels around Mt. Rushmore on his own, out of sight from his parents and park personnel, and befriends a dynamite expert living deep inside the landmark who claims to have helped carve it. As a way of saying thanks, he blows up one part of the mountain near the sculpture to reveal Dennis' face on it.
  • In the Tiny Toon Adventures episode "No Toon is an Island", Buster, Babs, Plucky and Hamton find buried treasure and while sleeping they all dream about how they're gonna spend it. In Plucky's dream, he narrates that he always wanted to be on Mt. Rushmore, but was told there wasn't enough room (a sign above Rushmore reads "No Lame Ducks"), so Plucky instead has 1/4 of the entire Earth carved into a likeness of his head.
  • Happens in the ChalkZone music video for "Puttin' On The Dog" with Rudy, Penny, and Snap's faces.

     Real Life 
  • Mount Rushmore itself is an example of this, being originally a sacred ground known as the Six Grandfathers by the native Lakota Sioux. Its sculptor Gutzon Borglum intended to create a tourist attraction to promote interest in South Dakota; he previously planned to carve the Needles, a different landmark, but found the stone there unsuitable. The Black Hills mountain range in which its located remains a topic of bitter contention for the Sioux today, and Mount Rushmore in particular is considered emblematic of the suffering and injustices dealt to them by the United States.
  • During his reign over ancient Rome, considering himself the embodiment of a god, the emperor Caligula replaced the heads of many statues of the gods with his own. He also made his horse a consul, so go figure. This makes this trope Older Than Feudalism.
  • In another Roman example, the Emperor Augustus got a statue of Alexander the Great and then had his head put on it. The reason for this was to convince people in the Eastern part of the empire, who still very much admired Alexander, that Augustus and the Romans were his successors. It was also kind of to brag about having defeated Alexander's kingdom of Macedonia... even though it was just a shell of its former self by the time the Romans got there.
  • The Sphinx predates the ancient Egyptian civilization we are familiar with by quite some time and some Egyptologists claim it originally had the face of a lion until a later pharaoh changed it to his own face. Said Egyptologists are savagely mocked and ridiculed by most historians, however, so this may or may not be true. The Sphinx could even be an inversion since the head appears to predate the body. They just had this big head statue, then they dug around it much later to give it a lion body. It explains the bad proportions, among other things.
  • Deface and Replace was a pretty common way for pharaohs to reuse their predecessors' monuments, Sphinx aside.
  • Romans sometimes used to build statues in a way that allowed the heads to be easily swapped out.
  • Around the time of his death in 2004, some conservatives wanted to add Ronald Reagan to Mount Rushmore, and there was even a bill in the House (H.R.4980) introduced with 18 co-sponsors. The Reagan Legacy Project continues to push for this as part of their ongoing efforts to canonize Reagan.
  • Greenpeace managed to pull off unfurling a banner of Barack Obama as a fifth face, to prod the president to push Global Warming legislation. It backfired, as Obama thought it was a form of odd bribery.
  • The Crazy Horse Memorial is actually in the same geographical area as Mount Rushmore (only about 17 miles away in fact) and depicts the eponymous warrior atop a steed and pointing into the distance. Far bigger than the depicted Presidents, it is very much a Take That! to the other memorial. Or rather, it will be, as it was started in 1948 and is still unfinished. The Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation funds the project through private donations and has refused multiple offers of federal funding, and the original sculptor's wife and seven of their ten children are still hard at work. Hilariously, some of the Sioux aren't too keen on it, and the picture of Crazy Horse used as a reference may or may not be an actual picture of him, since he usually resisted being photographed. Not only that, but depending on who you ask, the statue is also defacing a very revered mountain to make a statue of him pointing, which is something of a disrespectful gesture in Native culture. One person compared it to someone digging up Arlington Cemetery to build a statue of George Washington picking his nose, or worse. On the other hand, the idea of Crazy Horse giving a disrespectful gesture to Mount Rushmore is something others see as appropriate.
  • A more roundabout example: During the Restoration of 1814, the bronze statue of Napoleon on top of the column of the place Vendôme was taken down and molten down to make a replacement statue of King Henry IV for the equestrian statue on the Pont Neuf destroyed during the Revolution.
  • A Russian example: The city of Samara once had a monument to the tsar Alexander II the Liberator. When the Bolsheviks came to power, they replaced the statue with Lenin. The humorousness of the situation is that the statue of Lenin was too small for the huge pedestal.
  • Another example involving a city getting rid of Lenin's statue: In 2015, after passing a law outlawing Communism, the city of Odesa, Ukraine transformed theirs into a tribute to Darth Vader.
  • A mural depicting Warner Bros. animated properties, which was seen on the studio lot from the late 1990s until 2008, featured various characters standing next to a Rushmore-style mountain with carvings of Bugs Bunny, Fred Flintstone, Batman and Scooby-Doo.
  • The Hollywood Sign in Los Angeles is a very popular target for this.
    • In 1976, after a state law decriminalizing cannabis went into effect, a prankster named Danny Finegood altered the sign to read "HOLLYWEED". When full legalization went into effect in the state of California in 2017, somebody repeated it as an homage.
    • The following year, Finegood altered the sign to read "HOLYWOOD" to celebrate Easter. This was repeated in 1987 when Pope John Paul II visited Los Angeles.
    • In 1983, a group of Navy midshipmen, with permission, altered the sign to read "GO NAVY" when the Army-Navy football game was played on the West Coast (specifically, at the Rose Bowl) for the first time.
    • In 1985, a New Orleans rock band called The Raffeys altered the sign to read "RAFFEYSOD" in order to promote themselves. They intended for it to read "RAFFEYS!!", but ran out of bedding to drape the exclamation points over the last two letters, though fortunately, the end product still declared that Hollywood was now "the Raffeys' sod" (i.e. their turf). The band's keyboardist Max Chain discusses it more in this article for Vice, stating that the biggest mistake they made was that they waited too long to claim credit for the stunt due to fear of being arrested for it, and that they blew their shot at fame as a result.
    • In 1987, students at the California Institute of Technology celebrated the hundredth anniversary of Hollywood's incorporation as a municipality by altering the sign to read "CALTECH" as a senior prank.
    • Finegood struck again during the Iran-Contra hearings that same year when he covered the H so that the sign read "OLLYWOOD" as a "tribute" to Oliver North.
    • A third alteration in 1987 happened when the brand-new Fox network had the sign read "FOX".
    • Finegood's last alteration came in 1990, when he changed the sign to read "OIL WAR" in order to protest the Gulf War.
    • In 1992, supporters of H. Ross Perot's presidential campaign made the sign read "PEROTWOOD".
    • That same year, Paramount hung a 75-foot cutout of Holli Would from Cool World on the sign in order to promote the film. Residents were not amused.
    • In 1993, somebody changed the sign to read "JOLLYGOOD".
    • That same year, just before the UCLA-USC game, members of UCLA's Theta Chi fraternity changed the sign to read "GO UCLA". This incident prompted the city of Los Angeles to finally install security on the sign.
    • In 2010, the Trust for Public Land, protesting real estate development around the Hollywood Sign, got permission to hang banners from it reading "SAVE THE PEAK". Pictures were taken as they were in the process of hanging the banners, leaving the sign to read "SALLYWOOD" AND "SAVE THE POOD" at various points.
    • That same year, Kesha claimed to have altered the sign to read "KE$HAWOOD", but it turned out that the video was done with CGI.
    • In 2021, six people were arrested for altering the sign to read "HOLLYBOOB" as a breast cancer awareness stunt.
  • In 2019, the "SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO THE INDUSTRIAL CITY" hillside sign that welcomes visitors to South San Francisconote  was altered to instead read "SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO THE INDUSTRIAL TITY".


Video Example(s):


All-Powerful Crocker

After finally capturing a fairy (namely Wanda), Crocker fulfills his goal of becoming a supreme magical ruler.

How well does it match the trope?

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Main / NotSoHarmlessVillain

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