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Spiritual Successor in Live-Action TV.


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    #-E 
  • The Brady Bunch: So close to being Yours, Mine, and Ours: The Series that the filmmakers threatened to sue. The Brady Bunch also seemed to use the Doris Day vehicle With Six You Get Eggroll, another comedy about Blended Family Drama, as a role model.
  • Breakout Kings is one to Prison Break. The show also falls victim to Better by a Different Name. Also a Stealth Sequel with the appearance of Theodore "T-Bag" Bagwell and mention of the Fox River Eight.
  • The Brittas Empire has been frequently compared to the previous series Fawlty Towers, considering the fact that they're both sitcoms that focus on an Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist boss causing chaos in the businesses they manage, and the fact that the main source of humor comes from the crazy and ridiculous situations that come as a result.
  • Joss Whedon was disappointed with a 1992 movie he wrote called Buffy the Vampire Slayer, so he made it into a TV series in order to do it right. While the Buffy TV show retains the lead character of the film and some of its mythology, the actual meat of the show feels like it was adapting a different vampire movie: The Lost Boys. Both are horror-comedies about teenagers raised by single mothers who move to a small California beach town only to find it crawling with vampires, and team up with other local kids and an older mentor in order to fight back against them, all while wearing the style, music, and attitude of their respective decades on their sleeves and frequently making Genre Savvy comments about vampire stories. Whedon has acknowledged the influence, saying that the character of Spike, a bleached-blond vampire with flamboyant, Punk Rock-meets-Billy Idol mannerisms and fashion sense who was initially introduced as the Big Bad of Buffy's second season, was partly inspired by David, the villain of The Lost Boys, and that he took the idea of the vampires' Game Face on Buffy from that film.
  • Some people consider Castle to essentially be what Murder, She Wrote would look like if it were remade in the post-9/11 world.
  • Constance M. Burge has acknowledged that Charmed was partly inspired by the 1996 horror film The Craft, another story about a group of attractive young witches, though in this version, the witches are heroic rather than evil. Robin Tunney and Rachel True, two of the stars of The Craft, were less diplomatic, calling Charmed a flat-out ripoff. (Tunney even said that, in the past, she'd been mistakenly thought to have starred on Charmed.) The show's Real Song Theme Tune, Love Spit Love's cover of "How Soon Is Now?", was even originally recorded for the soundtrack to The Craft.
  • The Cooking Channel show "Cheap Eats" is one of Food Network's "$40 a Day." "$40 a day" had Rachael Ray from 2002 to 2005 going to a city to find three meals and a snack/drink for under a budget of 40 US Dollars (or 40 Euros when they were still less than a US Dollar) in a 12-hour (later 24-hour) limit. "Cheap Eats" had host Ali Khan do the same task in just 12 hours, but for under a buget of just 35 US Dollars (five dollars less than before, AND when the US dollar isn't as strong as it had been 2002-2005). Twice Rachael blew her budget on purpose (Philadelphia and Arizona) while Ali only blew his in Charleston (the pulled pork BBQ dinner he had put him over by just under 4 dollars, but for a dinner like that, he said he wouldn't do a thing differently).
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine is basically a modern-day remake of Barney Miller set in the New York City borough of Brooklyn with a similar style of sitcom comedy and a diverse cast.
  • Cheers is a spiritual successor to Fawlty Towers and was actually written as an American version of the selfsame. It was only when the writers realized that the overwhelming majority of the plots were taking place in the hotel bar that they cut the hotel out and just set the show in the bar.
  • Chōjinki Metalder was produced by Toei to be a 1980s version of Jinzou Ningen Kikaider. Both involved robotic superheroes with a two-tone color scheme on their body (blue on the left side and red on the right), both end their names with "der" ("Kikaider" literally means "Machineder"), their human forms are modeled after the likeness of their creator's dead son (Jiro's likeness came from Taro's, while Ryusei Tsurugi's was from Tatsuo Koga), and they're both assisted by a rival cyborg in black who formerly worked for the enemy (Hakaider and Topgunder).
  • Choujin Sentai Jetman: This show is what Science Ninja Team Gatchaman would've been had it been remade into a live-action series.
  • Chuck, in a lot of ways, is a combination Spiritual Successor. Take one part Jake 2.0 (everyday geek infused with Applied Phlebotinum to make him a badass), one part She Spies (a borderline Affectionate Parody of the spy genre), mix well, top with Adam Baldwin, and serve. The short-lived Intelligence was this to Chuck.
  • The CBS series Cold Case is this to the series Without a Trace, which premiered a year before. Likely because they were both produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, they followed a very similar format—an opening sequence in which we meet the victim and get a hint of what led to their disappearance/death, victim disappears/is seen dead, the cops are brought in, we get numerous interviews with friends and family that lead to flashbacks that start to spell out what happened culminating in one that finally tells us everything, then the victim is found dead or alive/killer is found and we get a final montage of the cops and the victim's loved ones. What truly makes it this is that it's at the polar opposite of the crime spectrum from WAT—in most episodes of WAT, the victim disappeared very recently and there is tremendous urgency to find them while they're presumably still alive. In CC, the victim has been dead or missing for years, if not decades.
  • The Colgate Comedy Hour to Vaudeville.
  • Community:
    • Many see the show as the spiritual successor of Arrested Development. Smart comedy? Check. Vastly under appreciated hilarity? Check. Loved by the internet? Check. To a lesser extent, Modern Family is also seen as one for similar reasons.
    • Whenever the idea of a Spaced American remake comes up, many bring up the fact that it would be a lot like Community. Both shows are about a gang of weirdos coming together to help each other grow, both are thoroughly obsessed with pop culture and both have had memorable paintball episodes.
    • The show is Saved by the Bell if it they were in college and were more meta-obsessed, clever, and audacious. (Although not to be confused with Saved By The Bell: The College Years.)
  • Cougar Town to Scrubs. Both have the same creator and share many of the same writers and actors, and are very similar in tone and humor. They even share at least one character. One episode lampshaded it in the opening title. "Welcome to Cougartown. No, it's not just Scrubs in Florida with a lot of wine." Community also feels like one. "Mundane" setting, every character is strange at the very least, lots of improbable Bunny Ears Lawyers at anything, loads of characters all known for a quirk or a gimmick (POP POP!), and a lot of "unique" episodes which do something different.
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    F-L 
  • Fairly Secret Army is a "spiritual spin-off" to The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin. It was created by David Nobbs, and the lead character, Major Harry Truscott, played by Geoffrey Palmer, was essentially Palmer's Perrin character, Major Jimmy Anderson, without the "bit of a cock-up" catchphrase. However, Fairly Secret Army was a Channel 4 show, while the rights to Perrin characters remained with The BBC.
  • Faking It could be considered the spiritual successor to both MTV's own Awkward., with it's neurotic teens, goofy adult characters and humor heavy on the Deadpan Snarker variety, as well as a more satirical South of Nowhere, with it's exploration of a teen girl discovering her sexuality and coming to terms with her attraction to her female best friend (although with Faking It it's a case (probably) of Incompatible Orientation where as South of Nowhere it ends up being mutual).
  • Falling Water, a show about people who can enter and manipulate other people's dreams, has been outright described as "USA's take on Inception, but without the tricks."
  • It may or may not have been deliberate, but Farscape is essentially Blake's 7 with an actual budget, a cruder sense of humour, and more explicit sexuality. Both series are about a bickering team of eccentric and morally-questionable Nominal Heroes, most of whom are escaped criminals, on the run from an oppressive government in a Sapient Ship, and sometimes managing to do good, at times by complete accident. Crusade could also be considered a spiritual successor to Blake's 7, with a similar crew of rag-tag misfits (Eilerson in particular could be considered something of an Expy of Avon), although the parallels would have been stronger if the series had continued down the path its creator intended before it was Screwed by the Network.
  • Fate: The Winx Saga looks more like Live-Action RWBY than Live-Action Winx Club. a team of girls training in special academy designed to fight monsters? Check. Not to mention the fact that Magics in fate work more like Semblances than what we see on Winx club.
  • FETCH! with Ruff Ruffman was this to Zoom, the first season of FETCH! even having one of the same castmates.
  • Firefly:
    • Some consider it to be a very well done live-action version of Outlaw Star.
    • Adventures of the Galaxy Rangers fans sometimes joke that Joss Whedon must have been having a few beers with Robert Mandell and made a Galaxy Rangers series told from the criminals' point of view.
    • Firefly is also often compared to Traveller, and there has been speculation that the series was actually based on a campaign.
  • The entire FOX television network has been called the spiritual successor to the DuMont network, and not just because it's the "fourth network" in the American TV lineup — after DuMont went bust in 1956, the two remaining owned-and-operated stations (WABD and WTTG) formed the DuMont Broadcasting Corporation, which grew and became the Metropolitan Broadcasting Company in 1957 and Metromedia in 1961; in 1986, Rupert Murdoch bought Metromedia's television operations and used them to launch the FOX network. The Fox Broadcasting Center is right where DuMont flagship WABD (now WNYW) sits — the former DuMont Tele-Centre, later called the Metromedia Telecenter during that era.
  • Fringe is almost universally considered a spiritual successor to The X-Files. It's also a spiritual successor to Altered States.
  • F Troop: This show is seen by some as a derivative of the Glenn Ford comedy film, Advance To The Rear.
  • The Fugitive shares several plot and thematic elements with the novel and film Dark Passage, to the point where the novel's author (unsuccessfully) sued the show's producers for copyright infringement.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • The series has been compared to Rome, HBO's first foray into the lavish, politically-driven sword and sandal genre. Several veteran actors from Rome re-enlisted to GoT and some others declared half-jokingly that the show stole Rome's thunder and wouldn't join Game of Thrones, citing It's Been Done.
    • Due to shared inspiration (specifically, the real life Wars of the Roses), fans have considered Game of Thrones the closest thing to a Darker and Edgier (as if that was necessary) live action adaptation of Final Fantasy Tactics they're ever likely to see.
    • Arya's story arc in Seasons 5 and 6 of Game of Thrones actually makes for a pretty decent Assassin's Creed miniseries. It's even set in Braavos (a fictional counterpart of Venice, Italy) in a time period based loosely on the 15th century, making it surprisingly close to the look and feel of Assassin's Creed II.
    • The series is also considered The New '10s' equivalent of The Lord of the Rings, as both are epic-scale adaptations of Doorstopper fantasy literature that are considered genre-definers in their respective media (TV and film). Both works also broke the Fantasy Ghetto in their respective media, and while the LOTR films were groundbreaking for being highly successful adult-oriented High Fantasy adaptations, GoT takes this even further by catering exclusively to mature audiences with its graphic content and intricate plot and characters. Many jokes were made about Sean Bean featuring in both franchises and getting killed off in the earliest installment both times.
  • Yet another Schneider example: Game Shakers is this to both iCarly and Victorious.
  • Bunheads to Gilmore Girls: both created by Amy Sherman-Palladino, both have a fast-talking, pop culture savvy, cynical (though Michelle is INFINITELY more bitter than Lorelai), thirty0something female lead. Both take place in small towns, both shows share Kelly Bishop, Chris Eigeman, and others, etc.
  • Glee:
    • The show could be seen as a successor to both the short-lived series Cop Rock and Viva Laughlin. Albeit much more successful and well-known.
    • The series resembles Fame: The TV Series with its theme of people wanting to be special and being a musical, except set in a regular school instead of a performing arts school.
    • Victorious and Dream High can be seen as screwball comedy and Korean Drama versions of Glee.
    • The 2003 movie Camp was, essentially, Glee with a smaller budget and way more subversion. It takes place in a musical theater summer camp, all of the numbers are Show Within a Show, and the lead character is a Pet Heterosexual in a Cast Full of Gay.
    • Glee similar to the Ryan Murphy high school-based show Popular (except without the music).
    • The show frequently invites comparisons to Archie Comics, to the point that there was even an Archie Meets Glee comic-book crossover between the two, with Dilton explicitly naming several characters from Glee as analogues to his own friends in Riverdale and noting that music plays a major role in both works. Archie is Finn, Dilton is Artie, Kevin is Kurt, Reggie is Puck, Veronica is Rachel, and Betty is a nicer version of Quinn, and while Archie Comics isn't built around a musical group the way that Glee is, it does have the students performing in the bands Josie and the Pussycats and The Archies. Perhaps not coincidentally, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the current chief creative officer at Archie Comics and the Show Runner for its Live-Action Adaptation Riverdale, had previously been a writer on Glee.
    • When it first premiered, it was often described as "High School Musical: The Series", though this died down once it became clear that the show was more of a deconstructive Black Comedy take on the concept.
    • Ryan Murphy has said that Election was also a major inspiration, particularly with the interactions between Mr. Schuster and Rachel being based on those of that film's Mr. McAllister and Tracy Flick.
  • The Goldbergs:
    • The show is essentially the 1980s set version of the 1960s set The Wonder Years, sans the warm fuzzy nostalgia. Both feature a family of five, with the main character being the youngest of three siblings, along with his aloof sister and pain in the ass older brother. Both feature a sometimes grouchy father with a subtle heart of gold, and both feature ongoing retrospective narration from the now-adult main character.
    • The show is the closest anyone has come to doing a sitcom In the Style of Jean Shepherd. The influence of A Christmas Story is very obvious (and they naturally did a tribute episode to it), but it also manages to replicate Shepherd's deconstruction of the Nostalgia Filter, broadly-drawn characters and use of pop culture to evoke a certain era.
  • The Good Doctor is from the creators of House, and uses the same structure as the Patient of the Week. It may be seen as that show's family-friendly counterpart, with an infinitely more friendly protagonist (although like Gregory House, Shaun Murphy also has his share of emotional baggage that interferes with his coexistence with patients and co-workers).
  • The short-lived sitcom Good News is this to Amen as they were both created by the same people, took place in a church, shared the same sets, shared a Hettabrink sister (Amelia), and most of the plots involved an Amoral Attorney and the church's reverend. The only thing that's different on GN is that there's no Thelma or Rolly, and GN is set in inner-city Los Angeles while Amen is set in Philadelphia.
  • The Good Night Show is this to P Js Bedtime, a programming block that used to air on the British version of Playhouse Disney, as Andrew Beecham, who founded the hosted formats international versions of Playhouse Disney utilized, became Sprout's senior vice president of programming when the latter launched. Both blocks help kids get ready for bed through things like stories and songs.
  • The Good Place
  • The Good Wife is perhaps this to Canterburys Law, as both are courtroom dramas starring Julianna Margulies.
  • One could draw a direct line from Go On succeeding Mr. Sunshine (2011), Mr. Sunshine succeeding Better Off Ted, and Better Off Ted succeeding Andy Richter Controls the Universe.
  • The Goon Show: Monty Python is its closest spiritual successor.
  • Gossip Girl is the spiritual successor to The OC as both had the same creator and similar premises of focusing on rich kids.
  • Gotham can be one to Smallville, since both are prequels based on DC Comics. However, Smallville stars a younger Superman, while Gotham focuses more on the Batman mythos.
    • The Arrowverse shows are also a spiritual successor to Smallville as they both are DC Comics-based shows that aired on The CW as well as airing on nights that Smallville aired. Some of the things the Arrowverse shows have done, such as having Green Arrow end up with the blond hacker chick and paying homage to earlier DC Comics-based productions, have already been done by Smallville.
  • Top Gear was a show on the BBC about three very British Vitriolic Best Buds messing around with some cars. The Grand Tour is a show about the same three very British Vitriolic Best Buds messing around with some cars... but now they're on Amazon.
  • Great News to 30 Rock. The show is produced by the creator of the latter, and is another Work Com focusing on the story of the wacky crew running a show. It also follows the original plan of the latter show, which is to focus on a news program.
  • Grimm is this to Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Many characters in Grimm have prior equivalents in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and there are features such as the trailer library/Sunnydale HS library and Rosalee's Spice Shop/The Magic Box.
  • Hannah Montana is this to Lizzie McGuire, due to the show's lead Miley Cyrus having Hilary Duff as her idol and reason why the show was made.
  • Happy Days owes a lot to American Graffiti - it's star, introductory theme song, setting and nostalgia, even if it took the bittersweet themes of American Graffiti and made them more straightforwardly sweet.
  • Happy Endings is pretty much Friends for a new generation, a group of six, a bimbo Rachel, a blonde Monica, a Metro Ross, a black Chandler, a Gay Joey, and an even more dorky Phoebe.
  • Tyler Perry's television drama The Haves and the Have Nots is pretty much the television series version of his film The Family That Preys.
  • Heroes:
    • The show itself is the spiritual successor to The 4400.
    • There are those who consider this show a jazzier version of the X-Men. Others consider it the television version of D.P. 7.
  • Hogan's Heroes drew inspiration from many POW Camp movies, but it's especially close to being a Played for Laughs version of Stalag 17. Stalag has the sadistic Col. von Scherbach, Hogan has the sadistic Col. Klink, and the addition of a T to his surname is basically the only difference between Stalag 's Sgt. Schulz and Hogan's Sgt. Schultz. The writers of the original play sued for copyright infringement and won, but it got overturned on appeal (on the grounds that the tones of the two works were vastly different).
  • The Holy Pearl: This Chinese Drama has been said to be an unofficial adaptation of Inuyasha.
  • Homeland is a Spiritual Successor to 24. In addition to sharing a lot of writers, executive producers and production staff, both shows are concerned with intelligence and counter-terrorism work, what motivates terrorists and double agents, the personal costs of such a life (both terrorists and counter-terrorism agents) and the lengths that both sides will go to. Homeland, however, skips 24's major gimmick.
  • Some viewers consider Home Movie: The Princess Bride to be in the same vein as Be Kind Rewind, with the premises of both being about recreating a classic film in an amateur way.
  • The House of Eliott was one to Upstairs Downstairs, both being British period dramas created by the same team of Jean Marsh and Eileen Atkins, though they were shown on different channels, Upstairs Downstairs on ITV and The House Of Eliott on the BBC.
  • How I Met Your Mother is very much a spiritual successor to Friends, which is itself a spiritual successor to Cheers. All three are sitcoms with some form of restaurant as their default set (Friends is the odd man out, using a cafe instead of a bar), and are centered around a group of unmarried ~30-year-olds, with sexual tension amongst the group. This was lampshaded by early publicity for the UK broadcast, in which the voiceover guy kept "accidentally" called the characters by the wrong names (Chandler for Ted, Joey for Barney, Pheobe for Lily, and "the hot one with hair" for Robin), before eventually admitting "It's basically new episodes of Friends without boring ruddy Ross." It's also something of a spiritual successor to The Wonder Years, using the framing device of an older narrator telling the audience stories about his past. How I Met Your Mother took the idea and instead of the fairly straightforward application in The Wonder Years, ran with the concept and branched out like crazy, turning the show into a convoluted mystery built on Anachronic Order and Continuity Porn.
  • In the House could be considered as a spiritual successor to The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air due to both sitcoms sharing the same executive producer (Winifred Hervey) and that one of the cast members of Bel-Air (Alfonso Ribeiro) joined the cast of In the House after the show's end.
  • A few months after new episodes of Into the Dark were suspended due to COVID-19, a similar streaming anthology series, Welcome to the Blumhouse, made its debut on Prime Video. The new series is essentially Into the Dark without the loose holiday theming, right down to the same studio being behind it.
  • It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is one to Seinfeld, both being sitcoms where the entirety of the basic premise is that the main characters are terrible people who never learn anything. The elevator pitch for the show was "Seinfeld on crack." It's also been noted that it's essentially an Irish-American foil to the quintessentially Jewish-American sitcom Seinfeld.
  • JAG:
    • Following its second season revamp, the show was considered by some in the late '90s to be spiritual successor of L.A. Law, albeit in a military setting.
    • "Rogue", a fifth season episode of the show, works out to be the best Rogue Warrior work never made. The level of detail in both the basic plot and the characterization is incredible, to the point one can't help but think this would be what Donald P. Bellisario would love to work on if given half a chance.
  • Jam is this to Big Train - made by the same people, featuring the same actors and using the same general sketch style. The only difference is that the humour in Jam is far darker (due to Chris Morris being its main creator).
  • Jessie could be considered a successor to The Nanny, since they are both about regular women being hired as nannies for wealthy families through pure happenstance. Not to mention that the creator/executive producer for the former, Pamela Eells O'Connell, was one of the original writers for the latter. It's also a double-case, as it's pretty much a Spin-Off of The Suite Life on Deck (once again, another O'Connell creation) focusing on Bailey Pickett but with the Serial Numbers Filed Off.
  • The Joel McHale Show with Joel McHale is very much a revival of The Soup due to similar format (Joel McHale riffing on reality-show clips).
  • In broad strokes, Kamen Rider OOO bears something of a resemblance to Inuyasha. Both are heavily focused on collecting scattered Plot Coupons that create monsters. Both have one deuteragonist who's an animal-themed monster from hundreds of years in the past and wants to gain the Plot Coupons to become more powerful, because he is not a 'complete' monster. Both have a protagonist who is an ordinary human that is often forced to restrain the amoral deuteragonist, and who also ends up with a Plot Coupon inside their body, giving them extra power. In both cases, the two main characters have a lot of friction in their attempts to get what they want (and both need each other). While Inuyasha and Kagome are explicitly implied to be attracted to one another, however, Eiji and Ankh are not, at least officially.
  • Kanpai Senshi After V was broadcast in Japan during 2014 at the same time the third season of Hikonin Sentai Akibaranger would have aired. Though After V is not produced by Toei, it does parody Super Sentai in a similar vein to Akibaranger, but with more focus given on the activities of our heroes at night rather than their battles against evil.
  • While the Disney Channel's live-action film adaptation of Kim Possible met a mixed reception, there'll always be K.C. Undercover if one wants to picture what a live-action version of that show would look like. Zendaya, the show's star, was well aware of the similarities, and described the show as a throwback to Kim Possible and the "cool Disney Channel" of the early '00s.
  • While Kevin Can F**k Himself doesn't get nearly as depraved as Natural Born Killers, the show's deconstruction of Dom Com tropes can come off as a great TV adaptation of the "I Love Mallory" scenes in that film showing Mallory's backstory. In both works, a clear-cut case of Domestic Abuse is Played for Black Comedy and dark satire by framing it as a sitcom, complete with a Laugh Track that gets a lot less appropriate as the viewer realizes how ugly the situation is, while the suffering woman in the situation eventually snaps and decides to kill the man responsible for her abuse.
  • Killing Eve is often compared to Hannibal. Both are about troubled law enforcement officers fascinated with killers and alternately pursuing or working with those killers.
  • Killjoys gets compared a lot to Firefly.
  • Kirby Buckets can be seen as the successor to Zeke and Luther or Out of Jimmy's Head.
  • Though Knightmare never got an American adaptation (they tried, but it was apparently "too costly"), Nick Arcade and Masters of the Maze both served as unofficial American versions. Arcade mainly took after Starcade in the main game, but took a Knightmare-esque approach in the endgame. Maze, meanwhile, centered more around mental challenges and the titular maze, which had contestants wearing VR Troopers-style armor, making it a bit more like Legends of the Hidden Temple with video game-style elements and a dash of Knightmare.
  • Last Man Standing is a Distaff Counterpart to Home Improvement, being a sitcom about a man's man played by Tim Allen trying to navigate his way through family life, only with his LMS character having all daughters instead of all sons.
  • The BBC's music show Later... with Jools Holland is without a doubt the Spiritual Successor to The Old Grey Whistle Test.
  • Lab Rats could be seen as this to The Powerpuff Girls, with both shows revolving around three siblings who were created in a lab and raised as the children of a renomed scientist, and who find themselves having to balance ordinary lives while using their superhuman powers for heroic purposes. Both sibling trios also discover one of their foes was responsible for their conception.
  • The Late Show with Stephen Colbert is this to The Colbert Report, with the major difference being that Stephen Colbert is playing himself instead of an idiotic, know-it-all conservative political pundit. Virtually all of the production and writing staff from the Report moved to The Late Show with Stephen (including, of course, Jon Stewart as executive producer); they share a set designer and set aesthetic; Stephen continues to have on an eclectic mix of political, business, and celebrity guests; and political snark abounds.
  • Legends of Tomorrow could be as close to Doctor Who as a Superhero show can get. Rip Hunter, time traveling badass that lost his family to a giant war, wears a Badass Longcoat and has people traveling with him shares an actor with the companion Rory from Doctor Who, while his background is a mix of The Doctor and Captain Jack Harkness (without Jack’s libido). Also, his time machine/ship, the Waverider, literally is outfitted with a TARDIS console.
  • The Librarians 2014 has many similarities to Doctor Who. We have an eccentric genius with an almost encyclopedic knowledge of magic and several others fitting in the companion role. Just replace aliens with magic, and the Time travelling TARDIS with a magic door that can send someone to any other door on Earth.
  • Life with Boys, although a Canadian Series broadcast on Nickelodeon with a low concept, can be considered a Spiritual Successor to the glory years of 2006-2007-era Disney Channel kidcoms like Hannah Montana, The Suite Life of Zack & Cody and That's So Raven in feel and in comedy, as it was created by Hannah creator Michael Poryes, features plenty of zany schemes, cool losers and Sibling Rivalry (though that can be said of many KidComs), and co-stars Cory in the House alum Madison Pettis. Star Torri Webster seems to have a very Miley Cyrus-like charisma and energy, and Emily Osment got to guest-star as herself in one episode.
  • Little House on the Prairie is a Spiritual Successor to Bonanza note , and Highway to Heaven is one to Little Housenote .
  • Liv and Maddie is a modern day Sister, Sister but replace the part about twin sisters Separated at Birth with sisters seeing each other again after one of them was done with a TV show. Both series also share much in common, at least in the concept of twin relatives with opposing personalities, with The Patty Duke Show. Also similarly to TPDS, Dove Cameron plays both "twin" roles. Patty Duke herself appeared in the episode "Grandma-a-Rooney" as their grandmother Janice and her twin sister Hillary.
  • Despite both being adaptations in different continuities of the same work, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power clearly tries to invoke intentionally the nostalgia of the The Lord of the Rings, and borrows so many elements from the trilogy, that one could consider them being part of same continuity: the filming style like having over the top epic music while the camera films the landscape before stopping at showing a wide shot of a location; the score emulates sometimes Howard Shore, something Bear McCreary acknowledged in the case of the Harfoots; having a similar storyline to Aragorn and Arwen happening between Habrand/Sauron and Galadriel who both are played by actors physically resembling Aragorn and Galadriel; and the number of Mythology Gags is endless, from having an exact replica of the Narsil from the movies, to one of the Istari (implied to be Gandalf) saying "when in doubt, —insert Hobbit full name—, always follow you nose" — a line taken straight up from The Fellowship Of The Ring. Also, they involved a lot of people who worked on the original trilogy: Howard Shore composed the opening theme, co-production with New Line Cinema, having WETA involved in the CGI department, John Howe once again serving as conceptual designer chief for another Tolkien's Legendarium work, and almost having Peter Jackson involved in the creation of the show, which went to nothing because of the Tolkien Estate.
  • JM McNab, writing for Cracked, has said that a then-announced TV adaptation of Myst would be redundant, because Lost was already the best adaptation of the game ever made. Both are about protagonists who wake up on an island filled with puzzles, mystery, dangers, and Mind Screw, with a startling number of similarities in some of the finer details. Lost's Show Runner Damon Lindelof even cited Myst as an inspiration.
  • Lost Love in Times is made by the same producer, director, and scriptwriter who made the 2015 series The Journey of Flower, so comparisons between the two are inevitable.
  • Love and Destiny is one to Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms. Technically the two series are unrelated, and Love and Destiny is about completely new characters who never reference the events of Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms, but there are enough similarities between the plots for this series to be considered a spin-off of TMOPB.

    M-S 
  • Mad Men is one to The Sopranos, no doubt in part due to the former's creator being an executive producer and writer for the latter. Despite The Sopranos being a Criminal Procedural focusing on The Mafia and Mad Men being a period drama focusing on an advertising agency, both are dialogue-heavy character-driven dramas that make use of Black Comedy, nuance, and moral ambiguity. Furthermore, both tackle many introspective topics such as mental illness, addiction, and morality as well as societal issues such as racism and sexism by using Deliberate Values Dissonance. Even more emphasized when considering both Don Draper and Tony Soprano are Broken Aces in their respective lines of work, are serial adulterers married to a blonde Stepford Smiler, and have unresolved childhood trauma from the actions of their parents among other similar traits.
  • Marie Antoinette (2022) was ordered by Canal+ following the end of Versailles, and much of it is set at the same eponymous place nearly one century after the final season of Versailles.
  • The Lifetime mini series, Marry Me is a spiritual successor to Maneater.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
  • VH1 Classic has the show Metal Mania, which airs late at night and plays a 2-hour block of Heavy Metal and Hair Metal music videos from the 1980s and 1990s. It's a spiritual successor to the old MTV show Headbanger's Ball.
  • The Middle is one to Malcolm in the Middle. The creators don't even try to hide this by... at least giving the show a different name.
    • Arguably, The Middle is more the Roseanne to Malcolm in the Middle's Married... with Children. The former both shows are interested in finding comedy in the lives of an ordinary-ish blue collar family (with the wife being the central character both times), while the latter shows used it as a backdrop to show the family's wacky antics.
  • Mock the Week is a spiritual successor to Whose Line Is It Anyway?, even sharing several identical games and a couple of guests.
  • Modern Family can also be seen as The Brady Bunch updated for The New '10s. Both are among the defining Dom Coms of their respective decades, each being about a large extended family that bucked the conventions of the "traditional" nuclear family. The titular Brady bunch was formed by a widowed father and a single mother (she was originally supposed to be a divorcee, but they ultimately left it ambiguous to avoid controversy) who remarried and brought their kids with them, while the extended Pritchett-Dunphy-Delgado clan on Modern Family includes a May-December interracial couple in Jay and Gloria (both of whom are also on their second marriage) and a same-sex couple in Mitchell and Cameron.
  • The Monkees was, more or less, a spiritual successor to The Beatles' films A Hard Day's Night and Help!
  • Monsters We Met and Wild New World are epilogue series to WWD's sequel series, Walking with Beasts, showing CGI Pleistocene megafauna outside of Europe.
  • Monty Python's Flying Circus: Most alternative (sketch) comedy shows all have something similar in common with them.
  • Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing has been compared to the earlier Detectorists; both are BBC comedy series featuring middle aged men sitting around chatting while engaged in an outdoor hobby. Both have seriously relaxed vibes, and both have lots of drone Scenery Porn. The only major difference being that one is a scripted sit-com and the other is two real life friends hanging out.
  • Mr. Show is often called a spiritual successor to Monty Python's Flying Circus due to its avant-garde sketch comedy format and theme of blending one sketch into another.
  • Mutant X was an absolutely blatant attempt at making a live-action X-Men TV show without the X-Men; it even borrowed the name of an actual X-Men spinoff book. Funnily enough, it was made by Marvel Studios shortly after they sold X-Men's film and TV rights to 20th Century Fox. Fox wasn't fooled, and they ultimately sued Marvel for copyright infringement.
  • My Summer With Des (one-off slice-of-life dramedy by Arthur Smith against the backdrop of Euro '96) is a spiritual successor to An Evening With Gary Lineker (one-off slice-of-life dramedy by Smith and Chris England against the backdrop of the 1990 World Cup).
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000 is a spiritual successor to all the various local "creature feature" shows such as Ghoulardi's. On some of these shows, the host would mock the movie while it was running.
  • Nazotoki Battle TORE! is like Dasshutsu Game DERO! but with a Indiana Jones theme. The premise is the same as the previous show's battle format, but with a few differences.
  • Newhart was a better Americanization of Fawlty Towers than any of the three failed attempts at an official Transatlantic Equivalent (Snavely, Amanda's, Payne), even though it wasn't trying to be one. By taking the setting of a small inn with quirky guests, but instead of a Jerkass owner, making the owner the Only Sane Man and Audience Surrogate, Newhart was able to stand apart from Fawlty Towers and give the concept its own spin.
  • Night Court could be considered one for Barney Miller as it focuses on the wacky misadventures of the staff of a New York city courthouse and also mixes comedy with some dramatic moments (though it also goes outside the courtroom more than the latter show did). The series' creator, the late Reinhold Weege, was a writer for BM, and several actors like Kenneth Tigar, Florence Halop & Florence Stanley appeared on both shows. Brooklyn Nine-Nine can also be considered a modernized version of Barney Miller.
  • Night Gallery, a supernatural anthology narrated by Rod Serling, can be considered one for The Twilight Zone. Although considering that Serling didn't have script approval on Night Gallery it might be more of a dispirited sequel.
  • The Noddy Shop is this to Shining Time Station: Both shows take place in a magical setting related to the stories the live action segments were framing devices for, have puppets singing songs once an episode and were created by Rick Siggelkow. Ironically, The Noddy Shop itself referenced a location from Shining Time Station. On Shining Time Station itself, the "flying saucer" segments from the first season are this to Teeny Little Super Guy from Sesame Street. Same creator, same set, same animation style. Both use stop-motion to depict inanimate kitchen objects as living characters.
  • Northern Exposure is also this to Local Hero; both are Fish out of Water stories with magical realist elements set in a Quirky Town full of Eccentric Townsfolk.
  • Not the Nine O'Clock News was hailed as the natural successor to Monty Python's Flying Circus, due to its Footlights-originating castmembers, anarchic humour and satirical edge. In fact, John Cleese even recorded an intro for the series.
  • Nowhere Man can be considered a spiritual successor to The Prisoner (1967).
  • The OA is a spiritual successor to Sound of My Voice, by the same creators. They both star co-writer Brit Marling as a mysterious woman who is associated with a disability and collects followers based on her claims of extraordinary knowledge. She gives sermons that are mostly recollections from her past experiences and also teaches her followers a specific sequence of bodily movements. Ultimately, her claims are neither verified nor debunked by the end.
  • Once Upon a Time:
    • The series is similar to Lost. Despite the former being a bit Lighter and Softer, the shows share many of the same themes of about belief and destiny, as well as a healthy dose of grey morality, two writers, various Lost-related Easter Eggs, and several actors.
    • Set in a world where fairy tale characters live in the modern day, having been exiled from their real home after it was taken over by an evil conqueror, it is almost a TV adaptation of Fables, albeit starring the Disney versions of those characters.
    • Convoluted plots with plenty of memory tempering and world-hopping, a Massive Multiplayer Crossover with just about everything in the Disney catalog, and a naïve kid caught in the center and trying to set things right. It's also the closest we get to a TV adaptation of Kingdom Hearts.
  • The Opposition with Jordan Klepper is the spiritual successor to The Colbert Report, with Klepper acting as a satirical take on Alex Jones, Breitbart, and the alt-right of the 2010s just as Colbert's persona was a parody of Bill O'Reilly and 2000s-era neoconservatism.
  • Orange Is the New Black to Weeds. Both shows have the same creator.
  • The Orville is not even trying to hide its Star Trek roots, mainly the idealism of Star Trek: The Original Series and Star Trek: The Next Generation.
  • OWN's Our America With Lisa Ling (originally Inside With Lisa Ling) ran for several seasons. A few years afterwards, CNN began This is Life With Lisa Ling, which is the exact same show except under a different label.
  • Outcasts: This unsuccessful BBC SF series looked very much like a UK version of 21st-century Battlestar Galactica.
  • Ozark is often cited as a spiritual successor to Breaking Bad, as both focus on a brainy, middle-class family man who plunges into organized crime and gets more than he bargained for.
  • The Pacific to Band of Brothers, sharing the same producer team, telling the story of the Pacific theater instead of the European theater.
  • Pair of Kings could be considered as one to Wizards of Waverly Place as they're both fantasy comedy with action elements and some grim world elements here and there.
  • The Parent 'Hood is The '90s' spiritual successor to The Cosby Show.
  • Parker Lewis Can't Lose: This show is sometimes called "Ferris Bueller's Day Off's real adaptation". An actual Ferris Bueller TV series fizzled out around the same time.
  • Party Down captured the tone of The Office (UK) (Cringey Workplace Comedy set in a hopeless corner of the world) more than the American version did.
  • HBO, Prohibition, crime, police corruption, racism, old timey show business, Holier Than Thou hypocrites, World War I veterans, Tim Van Patten directing, Shea Whigham, Gretchen Mol, Stephen Root... It would not be a stretch to consider Perry Mason (2020) to be the spiritual succesor to Boardwalk Empire.
  • Planet Dinosaur is the BBC's way to showcase new information learned about dinosaurs after Walking with Dinosaurs came out.
  • Play for Today is a successor to The Wednesday Play.
  • Pompeii: The Last Day (2003) was followed by other BBC semi-documentary dramatizations of historical disasters, such as Hiroshima (2005), Krakatoa: The Last Days (2006) and Atlantis: End of a World, Birth of a Legend (2011, actually based on the Thera eruption).
  • The Prisoner (1967) may be considered a Spiritual Successor to Danger Man. Patrick McGoohan plays the same type of secret agent character in both. Some fans (and George Markstein, one of the co-creators of the series) go farther, arguing that Number Six is John Drake, which would make it a true sequel series rather than a Spiritual Successor. However, McGoohan (the other co-creator) denies this, and character differences between Number Six and John Drake call it into question as well. For more details, see the "John Drake?" section of The Other Wiki's article on Number Six.
  • Psychoville, to The League of Gentlemen.
  • A Prince Among Men is this to The Brittas Empire, being both work coms starring Chris Barrie in a Jerkass leader role to a bunch of misfits. The major differences are that Barrie plays an ex-footballer here instead of a leisure centre manager and that Prince was much more of a jerk than Brittas.
  • The rich colors and whimsical feel of Amélie inspired the creation of Pushing Daisies.
    • Pushing Daisies is the third (unsuccessful) series created by Bryan Fuller and is seen as a successor to both Dead Like Me and Wonderfalls.
      • Several characters (portrayed by the same actor/actress) have appeared from one show to the other. All of them do carry themes of fantasy, uniqueness, life and death, golden retrievers and touching people. But the universes are clearly different, with Pushing Daisies being retro-cute, Dead Like Me being fairly normal (save the supernatural elements) and Wonderfalls somewhere in between.
  • A year after Aquí no hay quien viva ended on Antena 3 in 2006, Telecinco premiered another Slice of Life comedy similar to it, La que se avecina, with the same production company and most of the cast and creative team of its predecessor. In fact, the arrival of La que se avecina is subtly hinted during the final scene of Aquí no hay quien viva:
    Concha: Well, but don't get sad! We're starting a new life!
    Higinio: No, not new. It's the same as always, but somewhere else.
  • Real Time with Bill Maher could be considered the spiritual successor to Politically Incorrect.
  • Reaper to The Loop. Both had Bret Harrison playing a guy named Sam, who hangs out with his slacker friends. And they both got worse the second season, although YMMV on The Loop. Also Bret Harrison played a guy named Sam on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, who (like in Reaper) had a blonde mother named Linda.
  • Red Dwarf is one to "Dave Hollins: Space Cadet", a recurring sketch that featured on Grant Naylor's radio show Son of Cliché. Hyperdrive could be considered a spiritual successor to Red Dwarf.
  • Reed Between The Lines is intended to be a new millennium version of The Cosby Show. Both shows even have Malcolm-Jamal Warner in starring roles.
  • Rescue Me is a Spiritual Successor to The Job.
  • The 2018 NBC series Reverie could be described as a spiritual prequel to Inception (the lead actress even states in this article that it was pitched to her as "Inception meets Alice in Wonderland").
  • Riverdale maybe a spiritual successor to Beverly Hills, 90210 (and to a lesser extent, Twin Peaks) with Archie Andrews being Brandon Walsh, Betty Cooper being Brenda Walsh, Veronica Lodge being Kelly Taylor, Jughead Jones being Dylan McKay, Reggie Mantle being Steve Sanders, Ethel Muggs being Andera Zuckerman, Midge Klump being Donna Martin, Cheryl Blossom being Valerie Malone, Jack McKay being Hiram Lodge, Fred Andrews being Jim Walsh, and the Chocolate Shop being the Peach Pit.
  • La rosa de Guadalupe is considered to be a Mexican adaptation of Black Mirror.
  • Queen for Seven Days's star Park Min-young described the series as "Love in the Moonlight five years later".
  • Since both shows involve a protagonist played by Melissa Joan Hart who is a quirky Cool Loser with an interest in journalism and a rather unique first name, more than a few people have described Sabrina the Teenage Witch as "Clarissa gains magical powers." Sabrina the Teenage Witch could also be considered a spiritual successor to that of Bewitched as also with another female-strong Witchcraft-themed show that Sabrina would later share the same network, Charmed.
  • SEAL Team is essentially this to The Unit, albeit from a different branch of the U.S. military (Navy rather than Army).
  • 7th Heaven to Little House on the Prairie. Both shows were set in a town where everyone knew each other. The main characters' parents were always right and wise. They added tons of foster children and teens to the cast after the original kids got too old to be cute or have teenager problems. Laura and Lucy are very similar, spirited and a bit jealous of their more beautiful older sisters, who both end up suffering great tragedies. The youngest children are just there to be there, like living props.
  • Sliders is a Spiritual Successor to Quantum Leap. The shows share a similar episode formula, Sliders was advertised at least once as "Quantum Leap with an edge," and dialogue in a later episode implies that Maggie Beckett may be Sam Beckett's niece.
    • Beginning in the middle of season 2 (or the start of season 3), the show also became a successor to Doctor Who during that time between the original series' cancellation and the revived series' beginning.
  • Sprout House is this to Sunny Side Up, but pre-recorded since the crew didn't like how live broadcasts of Sunny Side Up were handled (although it was had [1]s on occasions). It borrows much from its predecessor, including birthday, craft and recipe, and celebrity segments. On The Sunny Side Up Show itself, the "theme jar" (seen in the first links of "blockisodes") is this to the Goodnight bell and basket from the first five season of The Good Night Show, as both had stickers which were hints to the day's theme.
    • The Sunny Side Up Show itself is a spiritual successor to The Birthday Show, an interstitial series on Sprout that aired when the channel launched in 2005 and was hosted by Kevin Yamada, who read birthday cards delivered by Mr. Mailman.
  • Some Assembly Required is a spiritual successor to Mr. Young.
  • Mike Rowe's Somebody's Gotta Do It is this to his cancelled Discovery Channel series Dirty Jobs.
  • Sons of Anarchy to The Sopranos. Though their settings and subject matter differ (East Coast vs. West Coast, urban New Jersey vs. small town California, upper-class Italians vs. working-class WASPs, The Mafia vs. biker gangs, etc.), both are intergenerational crime sagas that balance in-depth portrayals of the criminal underworld with black comedy and family drama, and both examine the American Dream and the nature of family at length; in particular, the DiMeo crime family and the Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club are both portrayed as surrogate families that sometimes distract the protagonists from their biological ones. Fittingly, Sons of Anarchy debuted on FX almost exactly a year after The Sopranos ended its run on HBO. Drea de Matteo also appears prominently in both, playing Adriana La Cerva in The Sopranos and Wendy Case in Sons of Anarchy.
  • The Sopranos was heavily influenced by Goodfellas, being a similarly gritty and unglamorous take on Mafia fiction with flashy editing and cinematography, a catchy pop soundtrack, and an eye for authenticity. Several actors from Goodfellas also made it into the main cast, including Lorraine Bracco (Karen Hill and Dr. Jennifer Melfi), Michael Imperioli ("Spider" and Christopher Moltisanti), Tony Sirico (Tony Stacks and Paulie Gualtieri), Frank Vincent (Billy Batts and Phil Leotardo), and Vincent Pastore ("Big Pussy" Bonpensiero and an unnamed Lucchese mobster). Adding to the parallels: Ray Liotta was apparently HBO's first choice for the role of Tony Soprano, and Lorraine Bracco was originally offered the role of Tony's wife Carmela; she asked to play Dr. Melfi instead, feeling that Carmela was too similar to her character in Goodfellas.
  • So Random! was pretty much this to All That despite being on rival networks.
  • The Soup, formerly "The What the? Awards" is a spiritual successor to Talk Soup.
  • In the UK, every new drama series about the Fire Brigade, such as Steel River Blues and The Smoke, is invariably described as a "new London's Burning".
  • Sprout Control Room was this to The Sprout Sharing Show, borrowing the viewer-submitted videos concept from its predecessor.
  • The Stranger was an independent direct-to-video (and audio) spiritual successor to Doctor Who, starring Colin Baker and other actors from the show during its long hiatus.
  • Stranger Things to Super 8.
  • Stuck in the Middle, is essentially a Disneyfied version of Malcolm in the Middle, complete with the lack of laugh track, scheming intelligent protagonist, and talking directly to the audience that the previous show featured.
  • Supernatural to The X-Files, at least before they got deeper in the Myth Arc and it was mosly about the Monster of the Week. The first couple seasons (at least) of Supernatural included at least three The X-Files alumni, including Kim Manners, John Shiban, and David Nutter; John Shiban was hired specifically because of his writing work on The X-Files. As a result, season one, especially, has an "X-Files" vibe.
  • While a spin-off of LazyTown, The Super Sproutlet Show is considered this to The Lets Go Show, and it is clear to see why - both blocks aired on Sprout on Afternoons, both involved cooking segments, and both had hosts who wore "Sprout spotters."

    T-Z 
  • Teen Wolf Is more a Darker and Edgier spiritual successor to Big Wolf on Campus.
  • That '70s Show was a show in the 90s that reminisced the 70s, which is what Happy Days did in the actual 70s to the 50s. Both were also set in Wisconsin, right outside of Milwaukee.note 
    • Freaks and Geeks similarly reminisced (very accurately) 1980 in 2000, and likely would have gone on to play to popular 80s tropes had it survived.
  • The Thick of It is spiritual successor to Yes, Minister. Both take a very cynical and comedic look at British politics at a cabinet minister level. Both have an invisible 'frienemy' style Prime Minister. Both show the Minister being worked over and having his chain yanked by the media as well as Malcolm Tucker and Sir Humphrey Appleby respectively. The Thick of It is also notably the Spiritual Antithesis to The West Wing.
  • Ever wonder what They Live! would look like as a TV political dramedy, with virtually all of the satire intact? Look no further than BrainDead (2016).
  • The Thundermans is widely seen as Wizards of Waverly Place, but with superheroes.
  • While not exactly a case of Spiritual Successor, 3rd Rock from the Sun and The Big Bang Theory have a lot in common with each other. Both shows are about Insufferable Genius physics prodigies with terrible social skills and all of their (equally) weird and socially inept friends, both have vaguely science based titles, and both John Lithgow and Jim Parsons have won Emmy's for Outstanding Lead Actor In A Comedy Series.
  • Tim & Eric are the spiritual successor to Monty Python, with the bizarre visual style and Anti-Humor in their shows.
  • Tin Man has Spiritual Successors in the form of Alice and Neverland''.
  • Tomica Hero Rescue Force is the Spiritual Successor to Madan Senki Ryukendo, made by the same people and sponsored by the same toy company.
  • Nicolas Winding Refn's miniseries Too Old to Die Young is a spiritual successor to his previous film Only God Forgives. Both works feature:
    • Stories set in a criminal underworld with gray and black characters
    • Long, slow scenes filled with pauses
    • Compositions of bright, colorful light, including lots of neon, contrasting with deep darkness.
    • Stoic characters
    • Sudden and shocking violence
    • A serious Oedipal complex between a man and his crimelord mother.
    • A character hinted to be an incarnation of death.
  • The two episodes of Torchwood written by P J Hammond ("Small Worlds" and "From Out of the Rain") are quite untypical of the show, with their enigmatic Dark Fantasy atmosphere. They are, however, very reminiscent of Hammond's late-70s-early-80s horror series Sapphire and Steel. "From Out of the Rain", in particular, has major conceptual similarities to the Sapphire and Steel story "Assignment Four".
  • Twin Peaks was a Spiritual Successor to an unrealised Mark Frost/David Lynch plan to dramatise the life of Marilyn Monroe. Both stories featured the mysterious death of a beautiful blonde with a murky secret life, all recounted in a secret diary. Lynch's film Blue Velvet could also be considered the spiritual ancestor of Twin Peaks. At the time, Northern Exposure was also seen as a Lighter and Softer spiritual successor to Twin Peaks
  • Ultra Series: Due to the nature of the franchise as a Long Runner, expect to see similar series to one another after a while.
    • Ultraman X: To Ultraman Cosmos, both series feature a Central Theme of co-existance, the main characters of both shows are Technical Pacifists who desire to create a world where everyone can live in harmony and are friends with a Kaiju since their childhood, furthermore the Big Bad of each series (Chaos Header in Cosmos and Greeza in X) are Eldritch Abominations that warp reality and corrupt living beings with their essence driving them berserk and empowering them along the way along with the Ultra mostly sparing his corrupted opponents instead of destroying them.
    • Ultraman Orb: To Ultraman Tiga, aside from debuting in the year of its 20th anniversary. Both Orb and Tiga are Ultras who had been on Earth since the ancient times, fighting against monsters and had involved with ancient civilizations during said period. Lampshaded in-series when Tiga is the other component alongside Ultraman for Orb to access his first form, Spacium Zepellion, with the former is also the first Ultraman cars that Gai collected. In fact, Orb's true form, Orb Origin debuted when his body shrouded with glittering lights, which was an allusion to Tiga's final form, Glitter Tiga.
    • Ultraman Geed:
      • To Ultraman Leo, due to a crippled Ultraseven-based Ultra being The Mentor to the titular hero, as well as a Downer Beginning (coincidentally, the crippled Ultra in Geed is the son of Ultraseven, who was Leo's mentor). Somewhat lampshaded in-series by Geed's Solid Burning form, which uses assets of both Leo and Seven.
      • Also one to Ultraman Dyna, due to having a larger emphasis on outer space and Alien Invasion, as well as directly following the previous series (Ultraman Tiga for Dyna, Ultraman Orb for Geed) in some form (Dyna being a direct sequel to Tiga, Geed expanding upon the power fusing introduced in Orb). Doesn't hurt that 1) Dyna as well follows up Tiga's Type Change gimmick, not unlike how Geed did so to Orb and 2) Geed's series debuted in the 20th Milestone Celebration of Dyna's 20th anniversary.
    • Ultraman R/B: Much like with Ultraman Orb being one to Ultraman Tiga and Ultraman Geed being one to Ultraman Dyna, R/B continues the trend by being one to Ultraman Gaia, due to its focus on two Ultras, as well as ditching the transformation gimmick from the previous series (Gaia ditched the Type Change gimmick present in Tiga and Dyna, and R/B ditches the idea of fusing powers used by 2 different Ultras that Orb and Geed featured). It even debuted in the year that Gaia turns 20!
    • Ultraman Taiga: To Ultraman Tiga. Apart from their similar-sounding names, they are the first Ultra shows of a new Japanese imperial era (Heisei for Tiga, Reiwa for Taiga), and also breaking the trend of the Ultra Series (multicolored forms and body coloration for Tiga, three Ultras sharing the same human hosts in Taiga).
    • Ultraman Z:
      • Keeping up with Ultraman Taiga being one to Ultraman Tiga, Z is one to Ultraman Dyna in that they are both the second entries of their respective eras (Heisei for Dyna, Reiwa for Z) and serving as a followup for their previous series in some form (Tiga and Dyna share the same universe and the latter series serves as a sequel to the former. Whereas Taiga and Z are Ultras from the Land of Light who are connected to one of the Ultra Brothers — Taiga is the son of Ultraman Taro and Ultraman Ace is later revealed to be Z's godfather). Both series' endgame arc even deal with a splinter faction within the main attack team's organization who plan to construct their artificial Ultraman (Terranoid and Ultroid Zero) to be used to protect humanity, only to be hijacked by an alien force (Spheres and Celebro), resulting them into being mutated into an Eldritch Abomination (Zelganoid and Destrudos) to be used against mankind. It also helps that Dyna, along with Tiga and Gaia serve as the main component for Z's psychic-oriented Gamma Future.
      • Also, to Ultraman Max. Both shows are also set on different universes separate from the main Showa continuity, but nonetheless have a Sequel Episode to a Showa entry (Max has "The Untargeted Town" and Z has "Do-Over in the Year 2020", both of which are continuations of storylines started in Ultraseven and Ultra Q). Both series have a fair share of lighthearted moments, though that doesn't mean their respective series does not have its serious moment. Matters also help that Max was aired concurrently at the time of Z's own original airing.
    • Ultraman Trigger: New Generation Tiga:
      • To the Heisei Ultraseven spin-offs in that both series take place in an Alternate Universe rather than in the original continuity of their respective shows—as Trigger is an alternate modern retelling of the story of the original Ultraman Tiga, whereas Heisei Ultraseven's story is a What If? Ultraseven was the only Ultra to set foot on Earth and the Ultra Guard never disbanded after he finished his mission on Earth.
      • Also to Ultraman Mebius. In addition to both shows commemorating the franchise's Milestone Celebration, both series take stroll back to a previous continuity from the preceding Japanese Imperial era. The only main difference however, is Mebius takes place in the same universe with the Land of Light Ultras that have previously set foot on Earth (i.e., Ultraman to Ultraman Leo and Ultraman 80) whereas Trigger is an alternate retelling of the original Ultraman Tiga series in an Alternate Universe separate from the World of Neo Frontier Space (aka., the universe of Tiga and Dyna) intended for the current generation of audience. Mebius served as the 40th Milestone Celebration for the Ultra Series, while Ultraman Trigger celebrates the franchise's 55th anniversary, and the 25th anniversary of Ultraman Tiga.
  • Undeclared to Freaks and Geeks. Others would say Do Over to Freaks and Geeks.
  • YTV's Undercover High is a spiritual successor to Prank Patrol, with both series focusing on elaborate pranks being set up on new unsuspecting targets in each episode. The main differences are that the action happens in high schools, and no ninjas are involved.
  • Unhappily Ever After was the spiritual successor to Married... with Children, made by the same creator, with each character on UEA an Expy of someone on Married with Children.
  • The Unusuals is a successor to The Job.
  • The Australian sitcom Utopia is the spiritual successor to The Hollowmen. Both are Working Dog Productions shows about fictitious Australian Government departments and star Working Dog's Rob Sitch.
  • Veronica Mars has been compared to Buffy the Vampire Slayer a lot. Both shows are postmodern twists on a popular genre (Noir for Veronica Mars, Horror for Buffy the Vampire Slayer) set in high school and with a female blonde lead, both shows adopted the same structure of telling season-long Story Arcs through Monster of the Week (or Mystery of the Week) episodes, and both shows displayed copious amounts of snark. Joss Whedon is a notable fan of Veronica Mars and even had a small part in an episode.
  • Victorious could be considered the spiritual successor of Zoey 101 since it starred the latter series regular cast member Victoria Justice and came from the same creator (Dan Schneider), but in plot it was more the successor of Fame and Nickelodeon's own Taina, and in style and tone, iCarly, also from Schneider.
  • Wayward Pines was a better American remake of The Prisoner (1967) than the official Continuity Reboot. As a Bait-and-Switch, pre-release publicity falsely suggested instead that it would be a Spiritual Successor to Twin Peaks.
  • WeeSchool is the spiritual successor to Baby Einstein.
  • The West Wing was born of material and ideas left over from Aaron Sorkin's movie The American President.
    • Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip was a spiritual successor to The West Wing. In fact, the show's biggest problem was often cited as the fact that the style and tone that worked so well for a show about running the government of the United States felt hilariously out of place on a show about running a Saturday Night Live Expy.
      • Studio 60 actually works better as a spiritual successor to Sports Night, being about the running of a TV show. Many jokes and references from the former are either very similar to, or directly taken from, episodes of Sports Night. Ditto for The Newsroom.
  • Westworld is this to at least five different works:
    • First off, it's one to Person of Interest, Jonathan Nolan's previous series. Before Westworld even started, he admitted that the two series basically look at the same question (what if AI became truly intelligent?) but from vastly different points of view, with Westworld having the A.I.s be anthropomorphized while the A.I.s in Person of Interest were always mainframe-based. The similarities actually become emphasized in Season 3, which introduces an omnipotent AI called Rehoboam that observes and controls society from the shadows (functioning in many ways like PoI's Samaritan), operated by a ruthless corporation willing to do anything to maintain its hold.
    • Alternately, it can also be seen as a spiritual "interquel" to Dollhouse. Both shows examine the use of advanced technology to exploit "lesser" individuals (robots in one, mind-wiped humans in the other) for the entertainment of the wealthy elite. It even extends to an attempt to grant the rich and powerful a form of immortality using this tech, only for the indentured subjects to rise up and buck their programming, leading to an apocalyptic nightmare world. Dolores and Echo parallel each other in their "special" ability to draw upon multiple backstories, and are the leaders of their respective rebellions. Pretend the hosts are actually dolls, and the Delos uprising could easily slotted in between the main timeline of that show and its "Epitaph" finales.
    • invoked There are many elements and themes drawn not only from the original film but also Čapek's nearly century old play Rossum's Universal Robots (and the works it influenced). There's enough of these references to make the series a Spiritual Adaptation of the play. In R.U.R., the robots are manufactured on assembly lines, but are otherwise organic, the biochemistry of their tissues consisting of artificially derived organic compounds. The series' depiction of host-manufacturing, via synthetic analogues close to real organic tissues, assembled on loom-like futuristic 3D printers, is probably the closest visualization of what Čapek could only loosely describe in The Roaring '20s. In this sense, it's almost Life Imitates Art (though we're still nowhere near building artificial organisms that convincing). Initially, R.U.R.'s robots couldn't feel pain and kept hurting themselves at work by sheer ignorance, in a bit of a parallel to the hosts glitching out or willfully ignoring things at odds with their programming. There are also some similarities between the series' characters and those of the play. James Delos is in some respects similar to his corporate counterpart Harry Domin, a self-assured man who doesn't fully understand the ramifications of what he's investing in. Dr. Ford himself has plenty of parallels to professor Rossum himself, including his apparent misanthropy and cynicism, but Ford's Mad Scientist public image is more about him playing things up, rather than actual fact. Arnold, Ford's more meek and less cynical friend, and more host-caring former colleague, has several similarities to the other scientists from the play. He has an element of Rossum's "reclusive Mad Scientist" backstory too. When using her Wyatt-based persona, Dolores has parallels to RUR's robot revolt leader Radius. Otherwise, she also resembles the human character Helena Glory, an activist for robot rights early in the play. And if some of the implications about the six parks' location are true, the parks might be situated on an isolated island... just like the RUR headquarters and production facilities were.
    • And, of course, Westworld is heavily reminiscent of Michael Crichton's most famous adapted work - Jurassic Park. Both stories are about carefully monitored & artificially created organisms being used as entertainment at huge theme parks located on isolated islands. Both stories have common themes of chaos and how life will refuse to be constrained & desires freedom (though Westworld cynically implies that this desire for freedom and finding a purpose is futile). Westworld and Jurassic Park also has both central corporations having lots of backstabbing and internal turmoil as the titular theme parks become increasingly unsafe & their main inhabitants begin to create more & more security risks. And that's all without the fact that both InGen and Delos are established as having many nefarious goals for the advanced technology being used in their parks that conflict with how it's currently being utilized by the respective park owners.
    • The third season's setting is inspired by Production I.G.'s anime series, Psycho-Pass, where there's an A.I. system called Rehoboam that analyzes data which gives the person a direction to their lives which is very similar to the Sibyl System except the latter is commonly used for law enforcement. Likewise, the technology of both shows also rely on holographs and virtual reality. There are also outliers (people who are threat to the system) and the system uses some outliers to neutralize other outliers which is similar to the Sibyl System using latent criminal as Enforcers to neutralize other latent criminals.
  • The 2012 British Mini Series White Heat drew comparisons to Our Friends in the North due to it focusing on the lives of a group of friends over many years of British history. The creator, Paula Milne, rejected a direct comparison, however:
    Our Friends in the North was absolutely seminal. But it didn't have a lot to do with women, and it didn't have a lot to do with race, and it didn't have a lot to do with sexual politics.
  • White Rabbit Project has been dubbed the spiritual successor of Mythbusters due to it taking taking on a similar premise and starring the universally fan-loved build team from the predecessor.
    • Time Warp tried to replicate the Mythbusters' success but studying on slow motion rather than exploring myths. The Mythbusters eventually even tackled at least one "myth" that Time Warp had already explored.
  • Whodunnit? (2013) is one to classic early 2000s reality shows like The Mole and Murder In Small Town X, although those programs played things much more straight compared to Whodunnit? And in turn, Escape the Night is this to Whodunnit. Its a Closed Circle Murder mystery (although they don't solves mysteries as they more solve Room Escape Game puzzles and vote each other off to die.) Hell, it even features a similar grey-hared host!
  • Sprouts Wiggly Waffle is this to Musical Mornings With Coo, as it was an early morning block on Sprout full of songs, music videos, and musical shows. Coo even made appearances in several segments.
  • The Wire is generally seen as a spiritual successor to the earlier Baltimore police series, Homicide: Life on the Street, which was based on David Simon's book and for which he wrote. It's also a successor to another of Simon's shows, The Corner.
  • Wizards of Waverly Place is this to Phil of the Future, in the sense that its Disney's current show with supernatural/magical elements. It's been said that the money Disney gained from the success of Phil was used to create Wizards.
  • Wizards vs. Aliens is this to The Sarah Jane Adventures. Both are CBBC fantasy sci-fi shows aired in two-part serials and created by Russell T. Davies (and are both more child friendly than his usual shows).
  • The Young Ones had two spiritual successors, Filthy Rich & Catflap and Bottom. One of the live Bottom stage shows had them going back in time and reverting to their characters from The Young Ones.
  • Younger to Sex and the City. Being produced by Darren Star, set in the Big Apple, and focusing on someone working in the publishing/literary field, even Star himself said he hopes this show will be to the currently-gentrifying Brooklyn what Sex and the City was to Manhattan.

Alternative Title(s): Live Action TV

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