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Replacement Goldfish / Comic Books

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  • Y: The Last Man:
    • Averted in the Distant Finale. Yorick refuses to even consider the offer implied by theories concerning bringing back any number of dead women and a sample of 355's hair.
    • Played rather straight in the same series' penultimate chapter when Dr. Matsumori is revealed to have used his estranged daughter's tissue samples in the hopes of being a proper father to her this time around. Alison Mann (neé Atsuko Matsumori) is annoyed over it, but she did not like the guy anyway, even before finding out he had sabotaged her own cloning project out of sheer ego.
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    • Also in the Distant Finale, Yorick has dozens of Ampersand-clones who take care of him in his old age. It's implied he DID use these as replacement goldfish after he euthanized the original (it was dying of old age and miserable) but is very cynical about it. None of the clones misbehave the way he did.
  • Spygirl, the Japanese knockoff of SpyBoy, is/has an entire assembly line of Replacement Goldfishes for herself. The Japanese spies don't understand why the Americans put so much effort into Spyboy if they were only going to make one. Her one solo story kicks off with Spygirl being curious about a picture of her with a man she never met, leading her superior Li to tell her the story. The story that ends with the previous Spygirl's untimely death. She's then drugged to forget the whole thing and has the photo taken away. Li remarks that if she figures it out again, she can always be replaced.
    • Painkiller Jane suffers from the same issue.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender – The Search has Kiyi, Ursa's new daughter born when she was in exile with her long-loved husband Ikem. This trope is subverted under Zuko because while Ursa and Ikem had her while under different identities in the story, Zuko never thought of her replacing him and Azula and welcomes her into his family as a loving sister. However...Azula, the self-described monster plays it straight; thinking that the reason Ursa had Kiyi was to try again after her last daughter turned into such a monster.
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  • During Spider-Man and Mary Jane's marriage some authors (usually former fans who started reading Spider-Man during the Lee-Romita run) wrote stories where MJ felt like she couldn't measure up to Spidey's first love, Gwen Stacy (even though technically his first love as Betty Brant), despite stories by various writers demonstrating that Peter loved MJ as much or more than Gwen ever since the original Clone Saga. But hey, it's not like THAT'S a problem any more! Hell, it was shown in House of M that his heart's desire is to be married to Gwen and to a father a kid with her (or rather, his heart's desire was to have saved Uncle Ben, George Stacy and Gwen Stacy, and Fridge Logic dictates they would have married if she'd lived).
  • In Sunfire and Big Hero 6, Hiro creates Baymax based on his deceased father.
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  • Part of the reason Jason Todd went nuts after his resurrection was because he thought Batman just replaced him without question with Tim Drake. The other part was that Jason's killer was still alive. In many ways, Jason was just a replacement for Dick, which only added to the resentment he felt. Some of the different versions of his origin story went so far as to say he was a natural redhead who dyed his hair black like Dick's — or was made to dye his hair by Batman. Though this is actually justified: Suddenly having a redheaded Robin when Bruce Wayne had just taken on a redheaded ward would've been suspicious, to say the least. Black hair minimized the switch.
  • The problems of the marriage of Hank Pym (Ant-Man, Giant-Man, Goliath, Yellowjacket) and Janet Van Dyne (The Wasp) have often been traced back to the fact that what first got Hank interested in Jan was that she reminded him of his murdered first wife.
  • There was a brief period where Captain America took on Rick Jones as his new sidekick because the boy looked and sounded exactly like Bucky Barnes, Cap's apparently dead partner from World War II. The writers realized this was kind of creepy and eventually had Cap ditch Rick in favor of The Falcon, who needless to say looked nothing like Bucky. This was lampshaded years later in an Alias story line which featured excerpts from Rick's autobiography. Rick compared his tenure as Cap's partner to a boy who only dated a girl because she reminded him of his ex-girlfriend.
    Cyclops: Why don't you dress as Nomad again and watch your book get almost cancelled?
    Captain America: Why don't you go ask Emma Frost what to do and say next?
    Cyclops: Why don't you dress Rick Jones as Bucky again and creep everybody out?
    Captain America: Hey, man. That's not cool.
    • There's also Captain America's girlfriend, Sharon Carter. During the war, Cap had an affair with an American woman who was fighting with the French Resistance named Peggy Carter. After his defrost, he noticed a woman who looked freakishly similar to her. This was Sharon, who was originally her much-younger sister but has become a niece with more recent retcons and Comic-Book Time forcing Peggy to be older and older. Peggy, unfortunately, was too old for Cap by the time he was unfrozen, so he got with Sharon and she got with Howling Commando Gabe Jones.
  • X-Men:
    • Havok was adopted as a child... by parents seeking to replace their dead son. How they got past psychological screening is anyone's guess, but then again, future X-Villain Mr. Sinister was the one running the place.
    • Scott's relationship with Madelyn was supposed to be a Subversion. He meets her shortly after Jean's death, and they look so similar that he actually believes that she's Jean's reincarnation. She tells him off for this, and eventually he accepts them as different people and learns to love Madelyn for who she really is, settling down and having a son with her. Then Executive Meddling brought Jean comes back from the dead, Scott abandons Madelyn for her, and oh yeah, it turns out Madelyn was a clone of Jean the whole time.
  • In Maus, Art's mother sometimes treated him like this, comparing him to his brother Richieu, who died in childhood years before Art was born (today, she would be diagnosed with manic depression, but back then she was just "crazy"). Art also talks about how he has a sibling rivalry with his dead brother. Vladek also sometimes calls Art "Richieu". Whether this is an honest mistake that every parent with multiple children makes or a Freudian Slip is intentionally ambiguous. It's possibly a mix of both considering the traumatic circumstances surrounding Richelieu's death.
  • The Beano's back page was originally a story called Tin-Can Tommy, about a robot boy built by a professor after his son died. The professor later built a brother for Tommy, called Babe.
  • In a way, E-123 Omega in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog was this for Commander Tower. He wanted Shadow to get E-102 Gamma because he turned himself into something of an assassin. However, circumstances forced Gamma to perform a Fusion Dance of sorts with Omega, leading to Tower to take up Omega instead.
  • This trope is played with in Emile Bravo's series Une épatante aventure de Jules, e. g. in the relationship between Janet and Janis in the second album and with Jules's pet guinea pig in the fourth.
  • In Convergence, Pre-Flashpoint Mera and Lois Lane to the Flashpoint Aquaman and Superman respectively. Aquaman tries to force Mera into accepting him, and while Superman (Subject-One) comes across as kind of creepy, he really thinks this Lois is his Lois and only wants to protect her.
  • Death of Wolverine has Abraham Cornelius, one of the people responsible for the Weapon X program, restart the program. The only one of his colleagues we really see is a woman who looks like the late Carol Hines, one of his colleagues from the original program who he's implied to have had a crush on.
  • This is the reason Thomas Blake Jr. was born. Tommy's mother, Cheshire, was coerced into joining the Secret Six by threats made against her daughter Lian's life. Cheshire, being the manipulative sociopath that she is, gets around this arrangement by seducing her teammate Catman and using him to conceive a new baby. That way Cheshire can leave the Six and no matter what happens to Lian, she'll still have a child. Cheshire even referred to Tommy after he was conceived as her replacement child.
  • An interesting version with the ending to Archie vs. Predator when Betty uses a special machine to heal and alter the Predator that killed everyone except for her and Veronica and turning him into a replacement Archie. This is because it fell in love with them and it's implied to be a Fate Worse than Death.
  • It's established that, aside from Iris West, the person most important to Barry Allen (the second Flash) is his former sidekick, Wally West (the first Kid Flash and third Flash). When Wally returns from having been rebooted out of existence, it reminds Barry of how lonely he is. Wally goes off to join his friends and investigate the circumstances around his disappearance. Coincidentally, his cop friend August Heart gains superspeed a short time later, and Barry takes August on as his protege. It's heavily implied that Barry took August on as a replacement for Wally.
  • Power Girl in the Post Crisis/Pre-New 52 was subjected to the unwanted advances of Vartox, a alien monarch from the planet Valerian who sought her help to save his world from extinction by repopulating it. While she helped cure his people's sterility, she made very clear she wasn't interested romantically in him nevermind how many times he persisted. Fast-forward to DC Rebirth and its revealed that Vartox has married an alternate universe version of Power Girl and formed a massive family with her.
  • Black Science includes a brief story about two parents whose children die. Bereaved, they travel to a parallel dimension to kidnap replacements from an alternate version of themselves.
  • In The Incal, John Difool meets, falls in love and loses a beautiful "Aristro" (she goes off with another guy.) Later he meets Animah, who exactly resembles her. (Strangely, given the metaphysical manipulations that occur in reference to John, this seems to have happened by accident.)
  • Wonder Woman: Steve Trevor, a blond super spy, was replaced for a time as Wondy's love interest by Thomas Tresser, a blond superspy, after Steve was too old in comparison to Diana's eternally young looks for editorial to want the two of them to remain together.
  • The Ultimates: After Jarvis gets shot, Tony replaces him with a new guy who's name he quickly forgets and calls Jarvis. Later still he's replaced (without noted reason) by an half-Asian woman. Whom he also names Jarvis.
  • In the end of Civil War II, Tony Stark fell into a coma. He eventually came back using a procedure that re-engineered his body from scratch. Tony Stark: Iron Man revealed the process purportedly meant the current Tony Stark was only a simulation of the real deal, meaning the original Tony Stark inadvertently died as part of the very same process meant to help him escape death. The final issue of the series saw Tony come to terms with the revelation that he was his own replacement goldfish.

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