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  • Oddly enough, the Transformers franchise does this within itself. Being named Prowl, Thrust, Snarl, Inferno, or one of any of the other most common names in the Cybertronian phone book, it doesn't mean you've got anything in common with anyone else with the same name.
    • However, they're simply Rebooted shows' versions of the same character, no different from the two Battlestar Galactica shows each having Starbuck. It's just that there are waaaaay more than two retellings of the Transformers' story.
    • The toyline, however, is another story. As is the way of these things, fans are a lot more concerned with continuity and such than the makers who just want you to buy it, so when two dissimilar toys are given the same name in the same toyline, or a toy with the name of a character it doesn't resemble comes out, the Epileptic Trees get planted as people try to figure out when the scant lines of bio "take place." Prowl the owl and Prowl the lion both released as Beast Wars toys? Are they the same guy? Which one, if either, is the same guy as G1 Prowl? There are, in fact, a ton of toys named Prowl that don't exactly mimic any character named Prowl and are hard to place. Transformers Wiki has a page for each of them, and even some of those pages have a "this is what we think we know; even we can't be sure" section.
    • In-fiction, there's the Unicron Trilogy, where some Transformers Armada Mini-cons have their names re-used for full-sized characters. Most of them don't get their names spoken onscreen, but a few do: The names Dirt Boss, Downshift, Mirage, and Blackout, we'll be hearing from again with characters who clearly cannot be the same ones. Also, the Mini-con helicopter Jolt may or may not be a case: despite both being Minicon helicopters named Jolt, it's hard to reconcile the backstories of the Armada and Cybertron versions. Also, some Beast Wars characters share the names of unrelated Transformers Generation 1 characters (while some, like Starscream and Ravage, are the G1 characters. The show is quite clear on who's who.)
    • The movieverse has another version: non-movie material such as comics often movie-ify past characters and use them, and the next movie comes out and uses the same name with an unrelated character. Sometimes Arc Welding is used (we find out how Arcee becomes one 'bot with three bodies), sometimes not (there's no slagging way Movie 1 Comic Mudflap and Revenge of the Fallen bad racial stereotype Mudflap are the same guy.)
    • Japan's got a different version: Most versions of Optimus Prime are called Convoy. Some get a prefix (Fire Convoy, Grand Convoy, etc.) but then, so do leaders who are not based on Optimus himself (as the rank Prime is also called Convoy.) Furthermore, what America considers a reboot and what Japan considers a reboot aren't always the same. Therefore, if a character looks like Optimus Prime and is called Convoy or Something Convoy it is impossible to know if he is intended to be (a) the same character as; (b) a rebooted show's version of; or (c) a completely different character who happens to be similar to any other given Convoy or Something Convoy.
    • In a more standard example, the various Autobots named Sideswipe share their name with a character in The Incredible Crash Dummies.
      • And a teenage girl shares a (nick)name with a Decepticon Leader.
  • Real Life instances were lampshaded in Histeria! by a Running Gag where Squeeing fangirl Pepper Mills would hound a historical figure for an autograph, only to be disappointed that she'd gotten the wrong person. For instance, she mistook Leonardo Da Vinci and Vladimir Lenin (in separate skits) for Leonardo DiCaprio and John Lennon.
  • Darkwing Duck, the Land of Negative Continuity, had two Psycho for Hire villains named Negaduck — one, a one-shot Evil Twin created when some Applied Phlebotinum split The Hero Kirk-like into his good and evil halves; the other, his recurring Evil Counterpart from a Mirror Universe, no relation to the first except in inspiration.
  • Galaxy Rangers is also the official international English name for Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger.
  • Fenton is the civilian first name of a Part-Time Hero on DuckTales and the civilian last name of the Part-Time Hero Danny Phantom.
  • Danny Phantom and Teen Titans both have an episode where a girl named Kitten blackmails The Hero into dating her to make her ex-boyfriend jealous.
  • A variant on The Danza, in which voice actress Grey DeLisle has two feline characters named "Kitty." The first being on Danger Rangers and the other on Tuff Puppy.
  • Both Arthur and Tiny Toon Adventures have a rabbit character who goes by the name of "Buster."
  • Danny Phantom and Static both have a Gadgeteer Genius Sidekick with the last name Foley.
  • Tom & Jerry was the name of a Mutt & Jeff-type duo who appeared in a series of Van Beuren Studios cartoons in the early 1930's. Of course, the later Tom and Jerry are now far better-known.
  • Max the White Rabbit; rambunctious and mischevous younger sibling or psychotic freelance police officer?
  • Jimmy Two-Shoes and Planet Sheen both have characters named Dorkus.
  • In-universe example in King of the Hill: in "The Perils of Polling", Hank, while giving his name to a reporter, makes mention of a "Hank P. Hill" who apparently doesn't pay his Discover card bills.
  • Toby Tortoise is actually an animated character from one of two Disney cartoons: The Tortoise and the Hare or Robin Hood.
  • Similarly, both Goliath II and Aladdin feature tigers named Rajah among the films' main cast.
  • Both Pluto's Kid Brother and Cinderella feature mean cats named Lucifer.
  • Pablo the Penguin is either a penguin of an indeterminate species from The Backyardigans or a Galapagos penguin from The Three Caballeros.
  • Is Rocko a penguin or a wallaby?
  • Hanna-Barbera was known for reusing names for its characters. To wit:
  • The Donald Duck short "Trick or Treat" features a character named Witch Hazel, as do the Bugs Bunny shorts "Bewitched Bunny" and "Broomstick Bunny". Although they were two different characters created by two different studios (Disney and Warner Bros., respectively), June Foray provided the voices for both witches.
    • Yet another Witch Hazel character appeared in the Little Lulu print comics.
  • Hey Arnold and Recess both had a Stinky Peterson. Somewhat awkward with the two shows being quite similar and even sharing a number of voice actors. And while it was live-action, The Red Green Show also had a Stinky Peterson.
  • In 1966, around the time the second incarnation of the Doctor on The BBC's Doctor Who was traveling about, Rankin/Bass Productions' King Kong cartoon series on ABC Saturday mornings had a villain named Doctor Who.
  • Two evil organizations called "M.A.D.": The agents on Tom of T.H.U.M.B. (segment of the 1966 King Kong cartoon--acronym meaning "Maladjusted, Anti-social and Darn mean") and the agents of Inspector Gadget (acronym meaning[1] either "Mean And Dirty" or "Malevolent Agency of Destruction", not to mention Penny's derogatory version).
  • The kingdom on King Leonardo and His Short Subjects was Bongo Congo. In the 1990s Donkey Kong Country, it was Congo Bongo.
  • In an odd form of recycling, this time by a writer, Zagras the Wizard goes from being Keeper of the Comets (in the episode "The Cosmic Comet") in He-Man and the Masters of the Universe to a wizard in The 13 Ghosts of Scooby Doo.
    • They had a writer in common, Tom Ruegger.
  • Thomas the Tank Engine and Theodore Tugboat, both shows about talking vehicles with a similar structure, had a few cases of this. One interesting case is that both have a regular character named Emily, one a friendly great ocean tug, the other a Scottish steam locomotive.
  • Within the same series, The Smurfs had two Smurf characters going by the name of Nosey: the real Smurf version who appeared in "The Lost City Of Yore", who was named simply because he was nosy, and the Gargamel-posing-as-a-Smurf version who appeared in "The Mr. Smurf Contest", who was named because of the nose.
  • There's Luna, an anthropomorphic moon. Then there's Luna, a winged unicorn sentenced to imprisonment for a thousand years on the moon. Try not to think too hard about it.
  • Both The Fox and the Hound and The Plague Dogs feature foxes named Tod which is the proper term for an adult male fox.
  • Is Mrs. Potts a teapot or Bob the Builder's neighbor?
  • Both the Classic Disney Shorts and Famous Studios feature ducklings named Huey.
  • A pair of characters named Max: The Grinch's forlorn dog and the none-too-bright second to the Chief Blue Meanie.
  • All the Pennys listed in the Hanna-Barbera tab above and Inspector Gadget's cute (and smart) little niece.
  1. according to supplemental material, The Merch or both