Ben 10

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An action cartoon franchise from America; this entry covers the first series.

Ben 10 revolves around the adventures of Ben Tennyson, a 10-year-old boy. While on summer vacation with his grandpa Max and cousin Gwen, he comes into the possession of a mysterious alien device - the Omnitrix - that allows him to change into a multitude of alien heroes. At first, there are only 10 aliens (hence the name "Ben 10"), but more forms were eventually discovered.

Why isn't the device in more capable hands? Well, once it attached to Ben, it was stuck there. It won't come off.

There's more to this show than meets the eye, however. For example, while this and most other American cartoons either Never Say "Die" or push the Thou Shalt Not Kill Aesop, "people" in this show get killed with reckless abandon with hardly anyone batting an eye. The show's also infamous for the Kissing Cousins vibe between Ben and Gwen. Plus, it has plenty of Nightmare Fuel.

Currently, the Ben 10 franchise has four separate series: the original show, the Time Skipped sequel Ben 10 Alien Force, the sequel to Alien Force, Ben 10: Ultimate Alien and the upcoming sequel to Ultimate Alien, Ben 10 Omniverse. The foursome who created the original series, known as Man of Action, went on to create Generator Rex, and later work on Ultimate Spider-Man.

Movie-wise, this (the original series) has three based on it. A Live Action Adaptation Ben 10 Race Against Time (Notable for starring Lee Majors as Grandpa Max), a regularly animated hour long flick Secret of the Omnitrix and a (supposedly non-canon) all CGI film called Ben 10 Destroy All Aliens.

Not to be confused with the Bren Ten. Or Benten.

Tropes used in Ben 10 include:

It started when an alien device did what it did
And stuck itself upon his wrist with secrets that it hid
Now he's got super powers, he's no ordinary kid
He's Ben 10! (Ben 10, Ben 10!)

  • Expy: Zombozo demonstrates similar behavior to Pennywise, he even turns into a giant spider in a hallucination(?)!
  • Extra-Strength Masquerade: As a Fantasy Kitchen Sink show borderlining on Planet Eris, it's really inconsistent with regards to whether the existence of aliens, robots, and mutants is commonly accepted knowledge, or whether such things are supposed to be regarded as myth by the general public.
  • Face Fault: Look hard enough, Gwen in Charmcaster's body in "A Change Of Face" has these.
  • Flanderization: Early on, the Omnittrix is fairly reliable, only transforming Ben into the wrong alien once every few episodes, and Ben is justifiably surprised when it happens. Fast forward to the Season 3 finale, and out of the four times Ben transformed in the first part, he only got the alien he wanted once, and he's reduced to frantically begging the Omnitrix to please cooperate with him this time...
    • Justified in that he totaled the controls a few episodes back to keep it from falling into the wrong hands.
  • Family-Friendly Firearms: Sometimes justified by the sci-fi setting, but really...where are ordinary gang members, mall cops, and other assorted armed Muggles getting their sci-fi firearms?
  • Foreshadowing: There are many hints that Max wasn't just a normal Plumber, such as knowing that Heatblast is not a monster but an alien, and mentions of Vilgax making him tense.
  • Franchise Zombie: Man of Action Studios only worked on this series. The three following sequel shows were Cartoon Network's doing.
  • Freaky Friday Flip: Gwen and Charmcaster in "A Change Of Face".
    • Later on happens to Gwen and Ben in the same episode.
  • Freudian Excuse: Kevin being abandoned by his parents and mocked by peers for being a "freak". Once he couldn't take it no more, he decided "to show them just how much of a freak he could be."
  • Full-Contact Magic: Played perfectly straight; mixing a black belt in Tae Kwon Do and magic alien energy-manipulation powers gives Gwen dynamic and fluid fighting scenes.
  • Future Badass: Ben 10,000, Gwendolyn, and cyborg Max. That is all.
  • Future Me Scares Me: When Ben and Gwen go to the future, Future Ben is pretty much a jerk.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar Redheaded Gwen: "Next year, I am so going to band camp!"
    • Also, in "Camp Fear:"

Ben: "You guys know way too much about mushrooms!"

Grampa: "Yeah. I still got the right stuff.

Gwen [nervously]: Couldn't you just slip the watch off?
Vilgax: And what fun would that be?