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Younger and Hipper

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As Yogi Bear's age decreases, so does his fashion sense. He's still smarter than the average bear but more radical.

"Nowadays, we're about appealing to a different kind of audience, an audience that is young, diverse, youngly diverse, diversely young, ethnically youthful, and homosexually young. And we think that that audience wants us to bring back NumberWang in a way that retains all of its original features but is basically like Skins."
Head of Programming, That Mitchell and Webb Look

When a work is revamped, relaunched, or reconceived with a young (or younger, at any rate) cast, despite the ages of the characters in the original source material. This happens because it is commonly believed that no one in the audience wants to watch "old people" (defined as anyone over the age of 40 or thereabouts). Often, this happens to supposedly allow Character Development, because the older character has "nowhere to go" and thus making him young again "opens up story possibilities" or, putting it bluntly, just makes him "relevant". Whether or not this is true is open to interpretation.

Occasionally, this trope will be inverted when the characters are young children in the source material, Sometimes every teenager character seems to see them as young adults but they are younger, and at other times they are children.. The characters will be aged to their teens in order to fit the "younger and hipper" ("older and hipper?") mindset, in which case is a Time Skip.

This is a type of Tone Shift. The moral opposite of Dawson Casting. Spin-Off Babies is a Sub-Trope. If done badly, can result in Totally Radical.

Parallel to Darker and Edgier, Lighter and Softer, Denser and Wackier, Bloodier and Gorier, Hotter and Sexier (but not to Older and Wiser, which is a trope about a character, not a franchise installment), and Age Lift (when a character is aged younger or older in an adaptation).


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  • Younger and Hipper is practically the religion worshiped by every advertising agency around, who have this strange idea that a consumer's money loses all its value once he turns 35. Unless the product in question is directly aimed at "senior citizens" (i.e. anyone on the long end of the 18-34 demographic), expect the people in commercials to all be young. Despite seeming to have been a marketing cliché since time immemorial, this is in fact Newer Than They Think. As late as the early 90s, it wasn't uncommon to see seniors advertise products ranging from potato chips (Tony Randall and Jack Klugman reprising their Odd Couple shtick) to lawnmowers. The cultural shift towards youth during the mid-90s eventually ended this, and nowadays you'd be hard-pressed to find a senior in a television commercial advertising anything other than medication or term-life insurance (unless, perhaps, he/she is advertising some kind of family-run business).
  • The resurrection of Wendy's "Where's the Beef" slogan in 2011. In the original ads, an old lady screams this angrily at servers of Brand X burger joints, in the new version a twentysomething hipster finds a vintage T-shirt with the slogan and various strangers repeat it until they've pointed him to a Wendy's.
  • Kentucky Fried Chicken also played with this. First came the initialisms from the full name to "KFC" in 1991. Next, many ad campaigns designed to target young and racial demographics. Remember the animated Colonel Sanders in 2000? That campaign lasted only a year, perhaps because animating a beloved founder still fresh and alive in the minds of many was a bit exploitative.
  • Even McDonald's is not immune to this trope. In April 2014, they unveiled a new look for their iconic mascot Ronald McDonald, giving him a fashion sense that's meant to resonate with the millennial crowd, and new viral marketing where Ronald will be "taking selfies" and posting them to social media sites like Twitter. The reaction so far has been a big collective groan. This was not their first attempt at this trope — see the "I'd hit it" banner ads of 2005, now a mainstay of "Worst Ad Campaigns Ever" lists.
  • Capitan Findus (also known as Captain Birdseye or Captain Iglo), mascot of a brand of frozen fish foods, originally looked like an old, jolly sea captain with a big white beard, not unlike a seafaring Santa Claus. In the late 90s he briefly turned into a much younger captain who looked a bit like Corto Maltese and who also fought a cartoonish crew of sea-themed villains a la Action Man or other similar action-themed cartoons, also counting for Darker and Edgier. Now he is old again but looks a much more realistic, grizzled sea captain than both of his previous incarnations.
    • The captain was given the treatment again in 2018. Unlike his 90s counterpart, this one retained the realism and is now opting to be a Silver Fox.
  • Even after the New Coke debacle of 1985, Coca-Cola was still intent on keeping that product alive, with both the new and original formulas remaining on the market simultaneously. As a result, two advertising campaigns were created. The original formula, now called "Coca-Cola Classic," went for ads reflecting the unabashed American patriotism associated with the soft drink, while New Coke went for the youth market that rival Pepsi succeeded in winning over. Enter Max Headroom (the marriage of actor Matt Frewer and CGI), who was all the rage among '80s teens, hawking New Coke with the taglines "Catch the Wave!" and "Don't Say the 'P-Word'!" Coca-Cola spent more money on the Headroom ads than the Classic Coke ads, but even its target audience ended up flocking to the original formula. It didn't help that there was some brand confusion; New Coke, which wasn't officially branded as such, was now called simply Coke, so consumers didn't know which formula the promos were advertising. Eventually Headroom withered away at the end of the decade, and Coca-Cola abandoned promoting New Coke, which quietly remained on the market (as "Coke II") until 2002.
  • This trope is parodied in an ad for the Seattle Mariners baseball team in which Old School Kyle Seager (A man so old school that he tweets on a manual typewriter) attempts to appeal to younger audiences by reinventing himself as K-Swag.
  • Subverted in a 90s fire safety PSA with Smokey the Bear. It opens with Smokey dressed in gangsta style giving a rap, only to declare that the new direction isn't working, and instead gives a straightforward, classic discussion of how to avoid forest fires.
  • Early 90s TV ads for the UK insurance company Clerical Medical featured two elderly muttonchopped men in the fashions of 1824 (when the company was founded) representing the professions in its name. Late 90s ones Gender Flipped the cleric and made them a 20-something couple in the present day.
  • State Farm originally featured the character Jake from State Farm in the 2011 commercial "State of Unrest", where he's a confused, schlubby middle-aged white man hounded by the wife in an equally as schlubby couple under the mistaken impression the husband was cheating. When they reintroduced him for an ad campaign in the late 2010s, the new Jake became a handsome 20-something black man as well as much more attentive to his customers' needs.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Humanoid Monster Bem usually has the main trio of Bem, Bela, and Belo as scary, somewhat monstrous-looking humanoids. In the 2019 reimagining BEM, Bem keeps his usual fashion but ages down to a man in his late 20's. Bela changes her appearance entirely to a redheaded teenager, and Belo ages up to teenage, trading his red jumpsuit for 2010's Tokyo fashion sense to boot.
  • In Moriarty the Patriot, Sherlock Holmes, John Watson, and Professor Moriarty are all handsome men in their mid-twenties. Thanks, anime!
  • Time Bokan:
    • Yatterman's Terrible Trio is filled out by a beautiful villainess and her two Fat and Skinny henchmen. Yatterman Night, on the other hand, has the youngest trio in the franchise to date: the new Doronbo Gang, composed of the original's descendants, are instead a cute little girl and her two handsome uncles (one muscular, the other lean and fair-faced).
    • Speaking of Yatterman, the franchise took on the VTuber genre with web shows for Boyacky and Ai. While Ai's redesign for the project looked about the same age, Boyacky was aged down to a scruffy man in his thirties.
  • In Getter Robo Devolution: the Last Three Minutes of the Universe, most of the cast are now aged down into middle-schoolers, but the dark themes have not been toned down in the slightest.

    Comic Books 
  • Many of The DCU characters in the 2011 New 52 relaunch were de-aged to make them seem more modern and appealing to younger fans. Superman went from middle-aged married man to single man in his early twenties. Supergirl, who was in her early twenties by the end of the preceding era, became fifteen again. The Golden Age Flash Jay Garrick goes from Cool Old Guy to Dogged Nice Guy college grad Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life in Earth 2. Barbara Gordon, who had previously always been at least seven years older than Dick Grayson, became younger than Dick and Jason Todd when she'd previously worked in congress and become a librarian before Jason even met Bruce.
  • Superman: When DC reinvented Superboy and Supergirl in the Post-Crisis era, Kon-El was reimagined as a (then)-trendy teenager in contrast with the adult Clark Kent, and Kara Zor-El — who had grown to adulthood in the Pre-Crisis era — was conceived as a teenager as a way to modernize the character.
  • Iron Man: The infamous "Teen Tony" era. They turned adult Tony Stark evil and so they got a teenage version of Tony from the past and had them fight. The whole thing was rebooted and no one ever talked about it again.
  • The Incredible Hulk: When Amadeus Cho was introduced, his superhero name was Mastermind Excello, having gained the title in an internet game show. However, never in his debut story is the original Golden Age Mastermind Excello, Earl Everett, mentioned. For reference, Everett looks to be in his forties or fifties at least, while Amadeus Cho was a teenager and even today is 20 at most. Over a year after Amadeus' story, someone got it in their heads to reintroduce the original Excello in the miniseries The Twelve, while Amadeus quickly outgrew the Excello name and came into his own as a superhero, though he did spend some time as a younger and hipper version of another superhero: The Hulk.
  • Legion of Super-Heroes: The "Batch SW6" clones. They were even given a title of their own to allow this trope to coexist with the original Legion in the TMK era. The Continuity Reboot of the Legion after Zero Hour also resulted in this trope.
  • Spider-Man:
    • The objective behind the One More Day arc, based on Joe Quesada's belief that no one can relate to a married superhero. Further casualties are Jean Grey (with Scott Summers and Emma Frost kissing over her grave) and The Wasp (killed to "make Ant-Man more interesting," just like Spidey.) That some of the love interests that get the bridge dropped on them are established characters in their own right and have people who actually care about their treatment is entirely lost on him.
    • The Clone Saga: Ben Reilly. As Peter's clone they were exactly the same age mentally and physically, but whereas Peter had graduated college and was married with a kid on the way; Ben was a single, leather jacket-wearing, motorcycle-riding dropout who still had a lot of the wisecracking energy and youthful idealism Peter had lost. The plan was to make Ben Spider-Man so they could return the character to his roots without undoing decades of character development for Peter. It... did not work.
  • X-Men: Joseph, the young Magneto from the '90s books. He was initially introduced as the real Magneto, who had supposedly been de-aged and stripped of his memories but was ultimately revealed to just be a youthful clone. He was killed off almost immediately after this revelation.
  • Green Lantern: Kyle Rayner, whom DC trumpeted as "the One True Green Lantern" while Dropping a Bridge on Hal Jordan and the rest of the Corps. Eventually reversed for the most part, as Hal and the Corps came back 10 years later in Green Lantern: Rebirth.
  • Blue Beetle: Jaime Reyes is another case in addition to being an Affirmative-Action Legacy.
  • Most of the characters in the Ultimate Marvel universe.
  • Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane: In addition to Mary Jane, Harry, and Gwen being in high school with Peter, Felicia Hardy (Black Cat's alter ego) is in high school with them as a new transfer student, unlike the Ultimate comics (which kept her as an adult), her The Spectacular Spider-Man incarnation (where, according to Word of God, she's 19) and her incarnation in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (where she never met Peter and by that point, anyway, he and Harry have graduated high school).
  • Batman: Earth One: The series portrays Lucius Fox as younger than Batman, in an inverse of tradition, where he's older than Bruce Wayne (especially considering some cases, he's a friend of Thomas Wayne before that fateful night).
  • World's Finest (1941): As of issue #215 (January, 1973), the series ran some stories about the "Super-Sons," Clark Kent Jr. and Bruce Wayne Jr. They looked to be in their twenties and sported the hippest clothes and slang. The 2010's Super Sons comic features much younger, Kid-Appeal Character versions (Jonathan Samuel Kent and Damian Wayne).
  • The Oracle Code: Barbara Gordon was always a college grad with experience as a senator before becoming Oracle, here she's much younger.

    Fan Works 
  • Cú Chulainn in Fate of the Clans is 24, younger than his first appearance in Fate/stay night and is instead taking the appearance he did in the OVA for Fate/Prototype. He is using the actual Gáe Bolg instead of a makeshift green spear.
  • In Young Justice: Darkness Falls, Raven is described as being around Beast Boy's age of 14 rather than her older depictions. Also, Kyle Rayner. Here, he's the team's age rather than the adult from the comics.
  • In The Other Side (memoriaeterna), after the original Avengers are all killed in the Snap (Avengers: Infinity War), Peter Parker ends up becoming the team's new financial backer in his role as the sole heir to Stark Enterprises. With the core Avengers team consisting of Peter, Wanda Maximoff, Yelena Belova, and Kate Bishop (Sam Wilson primarily works with the army, Hope Pym focuses on lab work, T'Challa has his duties as Wakanda's king and Bucky Barnes aids Sam when required, although all are willing to help in the field if needed), the team rely on such strategies as livestreaming their fights to help make them more relatable to the general public, with Sam reflecting more than once that he doesn't understand the younger heroes' way of doing things even if he acknowledges how this helps the public trust them.
  • Albus Dumbledore in Holly Potter and the Witching World at least looks a lot younger than his canon counterpart. Where canon Dumbledore is a Wizard Classic with silvery-white hair and beard, the Dumbledore of this AU is a man in his prime who works as a Private Detective.

    Films — Animated 
  • The real Anastasia was 17 when she was killed in 1918 and would have been 27 when the film takes place. In the film, she was 8 when her family was killed and 18 in the present.
  • Defied by Pixar with Up. They were asked about audiences possibly not connecting with a plot about a senior citizen, but they weren't too concerned about it. This has worked out for them.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • James Bond continually changes actors to keep Bond around a certain age range. As actors age out, they are replaced by younger actors.
  • Thomas and the Magic Railroad cast the younger, "hipper" Alec Baldwin as Mr. Conductor rather than the fifty-something Ringo Starr or George Carlin.
  • The Star Trek (2009) movie reboots the series with a crew of young actors, playing characters who are straight out of the Academy rather than experienced veterans of high rank, as the characters were at the beginning of the original show.
  • The Shakespeare adaptations often make the cast younger than they are in the original play:
  • Clueless was Jane Austen's Emma reworked with a high school cast.
  • City of Ember used the "older and hipper" inversion. The lead characters are twelve in the original book but are teenagers in the film.
  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians used the "older and hipper" inversion. The lead is also twelve in the original book, with age progression that is intertwined with a prophecy that spans the entire series. They are teenagers in the film to allow for romantic entanglements.
  • In the original Dawn of the Dead (1978), the main characters are all in their 30s to 40s. In the remake, they're all twenty-somethings, with only one guy who looks like he's on the far side of 35. There are a few elder side characters (Nicole's dad, the two truckers, and the gay man), but none of them survive to the end.
  • Joe Leland, the hero of the novel Nothing Lasts Forever is in his sixties and is as solemn and serious a character as can be found. When the novel was turned into the movie Die Hard, Leland was transformed into the young, hip snarky jokester John McClane, played by the young, hip snarky jokester Bruce Willis.
  • X-Men Film Series:
    • X-Men: First Class explores the younger (and groovier) versions of Professor X, Magneto, Mystique, and Beast with new actors playing the familiar roles.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse features Jean Grey, Cyclops, Storm and Nightcrawler as adolescents.
  • Blade does this to both Deacon Frost (casting him a more Generation X type of character. His comic book counterpart is an older, German-accented, white-haired gentleman that hailed from circa 1868) and Blade himself (shifting his year of birth from 1929 to 1967). Blade: Trinity also does this to Hannibal King, making him younger and more snarky.
  • The Marvel Cinematic Universe's version of Spider-Man is 14/15 years old and stays in high school for the entirety of phase 3, while he graduated midway through the first film of Sam Raimi's Spider-Man Trilogy and at the beginning of the second film of the The Amazing Spider-Man Series. Also, rather than the elderly retiree of the pre-MCU films, Aunt May is played by the 51-year-old Marisa Tomei.
  • The Hunger Games: Catching Fire: Despite being stated to be among the older tributes in the book, the District 6 Morphlings only look about 20-30 in the movie. Justified as their actors, Justin Hix and Megan Hayes, are around that age.
  • In the Jem cartoon almost all of the characters are at least twenty years old (with only Kimber being a teen out of high school). The live-action film changed the titular Jem and the Holograms into all being high schoolers. This changes them dramatically as they're more immature and don't deal with 'adult issues' like jobs or romance. Oddly, the film was aimed at an older audience than the cartoon—tweens and teens instead of girls ten and under.
  • The Bourne Identity: In Robert Ludlum's book, Bourne was a Vietnam veteran. The original 1988 mini-series kept him that age and he is portrayed by Richard Chamberlain, who was 54 at the time. This film, released in 2002, upgrades him to a contemporary spy and stars then-aged-32 Matt Damon who, incidentally, had been born while the Vietnam war was still going on.

  • The main cast of the Skylark Series are all adults with careers. The reimagining Alouette makes them (except for DuQuesne) teenagers. Oddly enough, they were pretty young and hip compared to the cast of most earlier science fiction in the original work to begin with.
  • If you are a pre-'90s kid, you probably remember Nancy Ekholm Burkert's illustrations of James and the Giant Peach, which had the Centipede with a mustache and the Spider looking like someone's grandmother. If you are a '90s kid or younger, you probably remember Quentin Blake's illustrations of the book, where both the Centipede and the Spider appear to be in their twenties.

    Live-Action TV 
  • End of an Age: Reality shows rarely have contestants who are older than 50 anymore. Even then, not even a handful. The days of Rudy Boesch (Survivor) and "Chicken" George Boswell (Big Brother USA Edition) are ancient history.
  • Anne Hathaway and James Franco's ill-remembered turn as hosts of the 83rd Academy Awards in 2011 was the result of the Academy's desire to invoke this trope. It failed ... the show's ratings among the 18–34 demographic it was aimed at actually declined from the year before.
  • Parodied in the Stargate SG-1 episode "200," in an in-universe Imagine Spot about the Show Within a Show Wormhole X-Treme! where the characters are all replaced by slang-spouting and horned-up teenagers, and then played straight with the young cast and relationship-centric nature of Stargate Universe. Ironic, eerily prophetic, the writers of "200" parodying what their executives were perhaps discussing, or all of the above? You decide.
  • As it went on for longer and longer, ER replaced pretty much all of its older actors with younger hipper ones.
  • Doctor Who:
    • Innes Lloyd's tenure as producer was an intentional attempt at this. He sacked companions Steven (from the future) and Dodo (who was a hip Sixties girl but a rather unflattering caricature of one, since her main characteristic was being a total weirdo) and drafted in the legitimately hip posh girl Polly and working class sailor Ben, both from the then-present-day 1966. Then he presided over recasting the Doctor from William Hartnell, whose health had been slowly failing and compromising his acting ability, with Patrick Troughton, who was younger and much more physically robust. The Doctor's characterisation also shifted in this direction; the First Doctor was a Grumpy Old Man with No Social Skills, travelled around with schoolteachers and his granddaughter, and went on pseudo-educational adventures in history in which aliens would not show up. The Second Doctor was The Social Expert with a flair for dressing up and got to do trendy 60s things like wear a Beatles haircut, teach teenagers to overthrow their oppressive square masters by mixing acid, go on adventures in psychedelic dreamscapes, and wear Cool Shades as a disguise.
    • The Fourth Doctor's tenure started off a bit like this. Tom Baker was at the time the youngest actor to have played the Doctor, and Philip Hinchcliffe specifically designed elements of his personality to appeal to a Periphery Demographic of college-aged and childless adults, who would not normally have watched the show. He had decided that 'traditional heroes' like Jon Pertwee were 'out of fashion'. At the time, the new Doctor's apparent youth (played by a man in his early 40s, although one known for being able to act his apparent age up and down easily) was a big shock and controversial with the fan base, and even received some lampshading in the show itself, including a Hollywood Midlife Crisis subplot in "Pyramids of Mars" and an exchange in "The Seeds of Doom" where a man tells him he was expecting someone older and the Doctor insists he's only 749. Of course, by today's standards, a 41-year-old Doctor would be a granddad, and he would be immediately succeeded by the youngest Doctor of the classic era.
    • The last two seasons of Sylvester McCoy's era also fit, as he had had a very unhip first season under massive pressure to be Lighter and Softer. A new script editor came in, and his plan for fixing it was to make the show more relevant to modern teenagers, dealing with the home life of the Doctor's companion in more detail, making the companion less traditionally squeaky-clean, adding a bit more sexual subtext and trying to deal more sincerely with the implications of a child travelling around time and space with an impossibly old Sufficiently Advanced Alien Chessmaster.
    • The relaunch uses this trope. The Ninth, Tenth and Eleventh Doctors get increasingly younger, with Ten and Eleven having a particularly hipster vibe, in comparison to the generally older Doctors before them. The Twelfth Doctor is the first of the reboot to return to an older Doctor. Mark Gatiss remarked on this in an interview, commenting on how shocked people were by the casting of the Twelfth Doctor:
      When I was younger the actors who interpreted the part all had ages similar to Peter’s today, and it was when we had our first younger Doctor, Tom Baker, that it was a shock. Now things are reversed.
  • In The Flash (2014), Barry Allen starts out as 25 years old when in the comics he's usually been depicted as in his mid-to-late thirties.
    • Jay Garrick, an elderly World War II veteran in the comics, is only about ten years older than Barry. Subverted when it turns out he's actually Hunter Zolomon and roughly the same age as his comics counterpart. The real Jay Garrick is in his fifties, still younger than in the comics but hardly a Millenial.
  • In season one of Mork & Mindy, the main characters were Mork, Mindy, Mindy's father Fred, and Mindy's grandmother Cora. The series was a huge success. For season two, the producers decided to change the timeslot, and eliminate the older characters of Fred and Cora, replacing them with a brother and sister from New York who run a deli that the two leads are now regulars at. However, this backfired, so in season 3 the producers returned to their original premise, but this also failed. The theme song went through similar changes. In Season 2, it was disco-fied, then went back to a retread of the original for season 3.
  • This is the trend that's being followed by both the Kamen Rider and Super Sentai franchises. The earliest seasons had their protagonists typically somewhere within their mid-twenties but at one point, the protagonists tend to either be in their very early twenties or late teens. As it stands, the protagonist Kamen Rider Fourze is a high school student, so this trope is more or less in full effect with the franchise by this point. 2012's series showed that this was not exactly a permanent shift but a choice for that year. Haruto of Kamen Rider Wizard is played by a 22-year-old actor, and the Reunion Show takes place five years later so even the Fourze cast will not be high-schoolers in their further appearances.
    • Tokumei Sentai Go-Busters, however, gives us a deliberately wide age spread — Yoko is high school age, Hiromu is in his early twenties, Jin looks mid-twenties but is actually seven years older, being a projection of his true self still in hyperspace. Ryuuji is almost thirty.
    • As of 2020, it seems like this is becoming more frequent. The actors of both the green ranger of Kishiryu Sentai Ryusoulger (2019) and the red ranger of Mashin Sentai Kiramager (2020) were born in 2002, being literally teenagers.
    • As of late it seems like they are focusing on a wider spread of ages for the team varying from teenagers to adults (Donbrothers and Kingohger both having a member in their mid 30s) and everywhere in between. The lead Reds however are usually on the younger side.
  • In the 2000s, middle-aged Vince Gill was replaced by the much younger duo of Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood as host of the Country Music Association Awards.
  • Poor attempts to apply this to Let's Make a Deal in the 1996 quasi-spinoff Big Deal led to its quick cancellation — the show and hosting style were greatly amped-up, the prizes more modernized, and the show added a Truth or Consequences-style stunt element. Big Deal lasted only six weeks (though it didn't help that Fox tended to preempt some or all of the show due to NFL football running overtime). The 2003 revival of Let's Make a Deal on NBC suffered many of the same downfalls and died after only three weeks. When CBS revived it again in 2009, they seemed to get the balance of old and new just about right.
  • The Price Is Right fought hard against this, with many elements from the show's heyday in the 70s and 80s staying mostly the same right up until original host Bob Barker retired in 2007: same set, same basic prizes, same old pricing games (though modern tech did creep into Any Number, the very first pricing game to be played). Only the announcer post changed (Johnny Olson to Rod Roddy to Rich Fields), both times being due to the death of the predecessor. After Drew Carey took his place as host, the show began making more cosmetic and prizing changes, as well as other derivations from the Barker era such as celebrity cameos and increased interaction with the models and announcers, which was originally a Price hallmark that died off in the late 90s. The show also began swapping out old-fashioned game show props (trilons, eggcrate displays, etc.) for modern tech.
  • The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Daily Show with Trevor Noah: When Jon Stewart took over the reins of the show from Craig Kilborn, they were approximately the same age. When Jon retired from the show 16 years later, he was middle-aged and clearly ready to retire. He then chose Trevor Noah, a biracial South African 22 years younger than him, apparently choosing him after other comedians declined the position and because he noticed some of his own personality and viewpoints in the younger man. Trevor has since stated that as he makes the show, he also aims to help build an audience with his generation and younger viewers like Jon did at the beginning.
  • Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj: When another former Daily Show correspondent Hasan Minhaj (coincidently hired around the same time as Trevor Noah) was also given his own politically orientated talk show, he was aware that there was already a plethora of these. So he changed his set format to become more like a "visual investigative comedy podcast" or "Woke TED Talk". He also made a conscious decision to not wear a suit or sit behind a desk, stating on record that he didn’t want to be just seen as “Indian John Oliver”. Further leaning into the youthful vibe, the set uses a lot of technical graphics while Hasan’s speech often veers into Lit AF speak.

    Print Media 
  • OWL's owl mascot got a redesign at one point to appear younger and more modern, complete with a skateboard.

  • For the 2014 London Palladium production of Cats, Andrew Lloyd Webber decided he wanted to "update" the Rum Tum Tugger character. Originally a rock star based on Mick Jagger, Tugger was turned into a younger hip-hop "street cat" (complete with backwards snapback, gold chains, and Hammer pants) in an attempt to appeal to a new generation. His song was rewritten as a rap, with Lloyd Webber even making the bold (and to many, absurd) claim that T. S. Eliot, whose poems provided the basis for the musical, was "the inventor of rap". The changes to Rum Tum Tugger received so much backlash that the original version of the character was restored.


    Video Games 

    Web Originals 

    Western Animation 
  • Scooby-Doo:
    • Both What's New, Scooby-Doo? and Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated are modern adaptations of old series from the '70s. In the latter, the characters are teenagers (as they were in the original series), instead of being in their twenties like many newer versions.
    • Subverted in most series after the original version. Originally Mystery Inc. were teenagers, being 15-17. Most future material present them as adults, with Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island having them as adults who grew apart as they aged.
  • Deconstructed in an episode of Batman: The Animated Series with the villainous Calendar Girl. She was a former model who was "past her prime" (that is, she had turned 30) and wanted revenge against the fashion industry that abandoned her. There was a scene where a company was pitching TV ideas such as something about a "teen cop" and "girls at a modeling college" etc. to drive the point home. In the end, it was revealed that Calendar Girl was still quite beautiful, but all she could see were the "flaws" that came with age. The irony? Calendar Girl herself is a younger-and-hipper update of Calendar Man, a somewhat lame C-List Fodder bat-rogue.
  • Batman: The Brave and the Bold played this trope straight with its version of The Outsiders, which consisted primarily of angsty teen versions of Black Lightning, Katana, and Metamorpho. They were later joined by teen versions of Halo and Geo-Force as the series progressed.
  • Batman Beyond owes its entire existence to this trope, as the stated concept of the show was "Batman In High School". They never specified it had to be Bruce Wayne in High School, though. Though the trope was played very straight (not only was Batman in high school, it was also set in the future), it was also inverted with Bruce Wayne himself, who (being too old to be Batman himself) became Mission Control to his successor, growing into a Cool Old Guy.
  • Extreme Ghostbusters was a younger hipper version of The Real Ghostbusters, replacing all of the "old" Ghostbuster characters except Egon Spengler, who stayed around as The Mentor. The "Extreme" Ghostbusters were a bunch of college-age kids (including a Token Female Perky Goth).
    • The 2009 video game explains this: the "shockwave" in 1991 made ghosts much bigger, stronger, and meaner. The Extreme Ghostbusters are therefore "Busters of Extreme Ghosts."
    • Additionally, it was Darker and Edgier even compared to Real- especially considering that Executive Meddling had made RGB gradually Lighter and Softer over time; this series reversed course big time. You could forget that this franchise started out as a comedy about ghost-busting. The game serves as an explanation for the outright Eldritch Abominations this new team was up against.
  • All Grown Up! inverted this trope by presenting an Older and Hipper version of the Rugrats characters. Although not as well-liked as Rugrats, it still had a decent fanbase.
  • Quack Pack inverts this by turning Donald Duck's nephews Huey, Dewey, and Louie into teenagers. The redesigns ended up unpopular so, unlike Max who stayed an adult after An Extremely Goofy Movie, the triplets have been de-aged again.
  • Whereas the original Transformers featured a team of grizzled veterans and a couple of rookies, Transformers: Animated features a team of brash rookies with one grizzled mentor.
  • Iron Man: Armored Adventures has Tony Stark, Pepper Potts, and Rhodey all in high school and fighting bad guys, one of whom is a teenaged version of the Mandarin's son, Temugin. Teen versions of Black Panther and Madame Masque eventually appear, as do college-aged versions of Hawkeye, Black Widow, and Justin Hammernote .
  • The Disney Channel inverted this with its "Zoog Disney" block by way of aging up the Zoog characters into "older" and hipper versions of themselves through an Animation Bump. It pretty much killed the block.
  • Yo Yogi! is a spinoff of Yogi Bear made during the 90s, where Yogi and his friends are teenagers. It provides the page image.
  • Goof Troop doesn't de-age Goofy, but introduces his son, Max, and focuses on his life as well as Goofy's.
  • The 1996 Flash Gordon cartoon took a character who had, in the past, been a world-champion polo player and professional football player, and turned him into a skateboarding teenager.
  • Muppet Babies half-played this trope. The characters were definitely "younger" but were by no means "hipper" than their adult counterparts. They were basically more naive and imaginative versions of their adult selves.
  • Parodied on The Simpsons in the episode "Kill the Alligator and Run". The Simpsons visit Florida after Homer has a breakdown, but they arrive during MTV Spring Break. One of the VJs is celebrating her 25th birthday, and in a nod to Logan's Run, a jewel on her hand starts flashing, and security staff take her away and replace her with a younger VJ.
  • Like other movies from the '80s, the popularity of Little Shop of Horrors led to the creation of a cartoon spin-off, and in that case, we get the thankfully short-lived 1991 Fox Kids show, Little Shop. Little Shop ages the protagonists down from twentysomethings to around 13 years old, made the Man-Eating Plant a friendly character that eats meat like a normal Venus flytrap and gets repulsed at the idea of people eating vegetables, and turned the Depraved Dentist into a school bully with Braces of Orthodontic Overkill.
  • X-Men:
    • X-Men: Evolution, which was launched after the success of the first X-Men movie, featuring several X-Men and Brotherhood members as being in their teens, including many who weren't in the comics, including Nightcrawler, Avalanche, and Blob. Additionally, Destiny, who's over 100 years old in the comics, is significantly younger, being at the most in her 40s.
    • In the 80's, there was a planned X-Men cartoon that fell through. It would've featured Storm, Cyclops, Kitty Pryde, Thunderbird, Nightcrawler and Lady Lightning (Carol Danvers) as teenagers.
  • Young Justice features a number of younger versions of adult DC Comics characters, including Cheshire, El Dorado, Samurai, Apache Chief, and Vox.
  • Ultimate Spider-Man features Spider-Man becoming part of a superhero team connected with S.H.I.E.L.D., consisting of Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Nova and White Tiger, the first two being older in the comics than they are in the show. A teen version of the Rhino also shows up as one of Spider-Man's former classmates and a similarly de-aged version of the Vulture later appeared.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012) has, among others, April as a teenager as opposed to a young adult like previous versions. Master Splinter is also younger, as in most continuities he is an old man, where here he is middle-aged.
  • In Beware the Batman Alfred is significantly younger, and more physically fit than previous incarnations, and he is stated to be an ex-MI6 agent with the rank of Major.
  • Bruce Wayne in The Batman seems to be in his twenties (his age is stated as 26 in season one), rather than his thirties, and his relaxed and lighthearted attitude during some of his interactions with Alfred suggest that his Millionaire Playboy act is somewhat less of an act than, for example, the Kevin Conroy incarnation. The series' aim was of Batman in his early years (with the first episode being Bruce and Alfred looking back, having been 3 years since Bruce became Batman.) He does become darker and more serious as the series progresses, however.
  • The Spectacular Spider-Man followed the Ultimate Spider-Man comics lead and puts Mary Jane Watson, Harry Osborn, and Gwen Stacy in high school with Peter Parker and made Eddie Brock Peter's childhood friend, a college student, and a lab assistant for Curt Connors. Likewise, the show also put Hobie Brown, Glory Grant, and Randy Robertson, characters Peter didn't meet until later, in high school with him.
  • Babar and the Adventures of Badou is a show more aim toward young kids and focus on the younger kid characters like Badou (Babar's grandson) and Zephir's daughter. Much more action-oriented than the original show. Even the contrast of the openings (the original had classic music and the new has a rap) shows this tendency.
  • Marvel's Spider-Man:
    • Doctor Octopus, John Jameson, the Shocker, Alistair Smythe, pre-Rhino Aleksei Sytsevich, Carolyn Trainer, and Electro are presented as Teen Geniuses around Peter's age or slightly older rather than adults as in other versions.
    • The series itself is this for Dan Slott's run as a key feature of the series is Horizon Labs reimagined as a special high school for geniuses, the presence of Max Modell (Horizon's founder) as its principal, the use of the aforementioned Clash, and the improved Spider-Man costume Peter wears in the series (after starting off in a Beta Outfit similar to the one in the Marvel Cinematic Universe) is a tweaked version of the Spider-Armor Mk IV from All-New, All-Different Marvel. Additionally, seasons 1 and 2 respectively adapt Spider-Island and Superior Spider Man.
  • In the Netflix reboot of The Magic School Bus, Ms. Valerie Frizzle (who was voiced in the original by 50-something Lily Tomlin) is replaced by her sister (voiced by millennial Kate McKinnon) Ms. Fiona Frizzle; the original character has gotten a Ph.D and become Professor Frizzle, who now features in the ending question and answer sessions (replacing the original show's Q&A segments in which viewers "called" the program's producers).
  • The version of The Falcon in Avengers Assemble is a Younger Than They Look teenager as opposed to the adult of the comics. Until season 4, where thanks to the events of the opening resulted in him spending years in the future, where by the time the Wasp and Vision found him, he's an actual adult.
  • Stretch Armstrong and the Flex Fighters, and its tie-in merch and comics, rebrand its title character from an adult crimefighter to a teenage one.
  • Parodied in a Robot Chicken sketch where two writers are working on a sequel for The Dark Crystal and reimagine the original as a rap music video called "The Dark Cristal" in order to drum up interest among the youth (and then promptly commit suicide via poison when they realize how much it betrays Jim Henson's original vision).
  • Sabrina: The Animated Series ages Sabrina the Teenage Witch down to a pre-teen and has her aunts stuck in the bodies of teenagers.
  • Jason and the Heroes of Mount Olympus does this to Mercury (Hermes) and Venus (Aphrodite), who are normally depicted as adults, but have been aged down to be tweens here (or at least the Olympian equivalent of one) to better serve as the title character’s best friends.
  • At the time Jackie Chan Adventures was being aired (2000-2005), Jackie Chan (born in 1954) was 46 when the show began and 51 when it ended. The fictional Jackie Chan in the show was clearly younger than the real deal. Fictional Jackie has a higher pitched voice (due to being voiced by James Sie instead of Chan himself) and time-traveling episode "Through the Rabbit Hole" showed Jackie as a school-aged child in 1976. The real Jackie Chan was twenty-two years old in 1976.
  • Face's Music Party: While Face was a goofy Excited Kids' Show Host in a similar vein to DJ Lance Rock in the original bumpers, this version of Face was written to act like an older cousin or sibling of sorts to the show's preschool demographic, making them in their teens or early twenties. It should also be noted that Chris Phillips, the original voice of Face, was in his early forties at the height of Face's popularity in the late '90s, while Cedric L. Williams was in his late twenties when Music Party premiered in 2022.
  • My Adventures with Superman: Many characters have received an Age Lift that puts them as young adults rather than their comic counterparts being in their late 30's or such. In particular, the main trio are new interns at the Daily Planet, and Slade Wilson has been de-aged from a grizzled veteran in his 50s to a Pretty Boy who looks to be about 30 at best. Clark's age in particular becomes a plot point, as when the General is interrogating him in "Zero Day, Part 2", he notices Clark's statement about "growing up on Earth" and on seeing his horrified reaction to the events of Zero Day, starts to reconsider if he really is the "Nemesis Omega" figure that slaughtered his entire squad. The general notes that if Clark's species actually ages similar to humanity (which is indeed the case) he'd have been too young to participate in it 22 years ago, showing that Task Force X believed Older Than They Look was in play with Superman.


Video Example(s):


April O'Neil and Casey Jones

While Casey and April are typically portrayed as adults, the 2012 version of the characters are portrayed as teenagers.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (8 votes)

Example of:

Main / YoungerAndHipper

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