Let’s look at some more anime clichés! No theme to these, just a list of some more clichés. I’ve already written 2 posts containing various anime clichés, why stop there? The first one had a theme of clichés that I wasn’t a fan of, the second didn’t have a theme… and neither does the third…
And with that, here are 7 more anime clichés, for no particular reason!
Honourable Mention: The Three Kingdoms
Actually, is the Three Kingdoms a even cliché? It’s certainly very commonly used as a story / theme for anime, but then that’s like saying WW2 media is cliché. I’m not even sure anymore. I should stop writing down overused story ideas as clichés just to be safe.
Anyways, Three Kingdoms themed anime usually either directly portray the three kingdoms, or use analogs to indirectly portray them. Usually the goal is to unite the kingdoms.
I gave this one the honourable mention treatment because I don’t think it actually counts as cliché. Or maybe it does. Anyways that’s why its only an honourable mention here.
8. The Royal Coup
This one seems to be quite the classic scenario in various historical / fantasy anime. Our protagonist, usually a member of the royal family, is forced to flee their kingdom after some devious person managed to overthrow the royals and take control of the kingdom. Sometimes an outside force is involved as well. Usually the protagonist is a prince or princess, and it’s usually their father the king who is killed in the coup.
Our protagonist then goes on an adventure to gather supporters from various regions, either inside of outside of the kingdom’s territory, in order to one day return and retake the kingdom.
I had this one written down as a cliché, but I wonder if it’s frequent enough to call it a cliché. I’ve only seen two anime that use this exact scenario, but I feel like I’ve read a few synopsis’ that also describe this situation.
7. The “Delinquent” Protagonist
Anyone else notice how often school anime make the protagonist a delinquent, but in reality, he is a nice guy and not very “delinquent-like”? That’s the cliché here. Usually the delinquent is either misunderstood, or he is supposed to be an actual delinquent but just never really acts like one. I guess the purpose of this is to be able to use a character that doesn’t fit in normally with everyone else, and so the anime can play off that.
Also he usually has spiky hair.
I can think of 4 anime off the top of my head that all use this situation, so I imagine that there are even more out there in addition to those.
6. *Stumbles* “What’s this in my hand?” *Squeeze*
Don’t really need to write anything else for this one. So I won’t!
5. The “Panty Thief”
Protagonist finds panties, for some reason. He proceeds to pick them up, and then for some reason, never puts them down. Then he gets caught holding them. And then he acts like he forgot he was holding them in the first place.
I hate this cliché, mainly because it’s just such a stupid situation. The longer the guy holds the panties, the stupider it gets too. Yeah, they’re panties, just put them back where you found them and walk away. No need to pick them up and vice grip them until you encounter a girl.
Sort of like #6, I guess you can just associate this with the typical “dumb” ecchi protagonist. Someone who is SO clueless when it comes to women that the sheer sight of panties on the ground (or wherever) causes his brain to short circuit.
It just bothers me that for some reason these guys would risk being caught as a panty thief just to hold onto panties. Either that or they all conveniently “forget” that they are holding them in the first place. Of course, in anime being a panty thief is usually forgiven and forgotten quickly enough. Real life would be a lot different there.
4. The “Things are getting interesting…” Character
Usually some devious, behind the curtain type character. They watch the protagonist from afar, and set up roadblocks for the protagonist. But they don’t challenge the protagonist right away, preferring to manipulate and use others for that while they sit back and comment on how “interesting” things are becoming.
This character has a high likelihood of also enjoying a game of chess alone. Their favourite thing to do is comment on how interesting things are, and how interesting the protagonist is. Their goal in life is basically to create more interesting situations, even if that leads to their own downfall in the end.
3. The Turncoat
Probably one of my favourite clichés / tropes. I love the turncoat, usually because I tend to like antagonists more than protagonists. The turncoat is usually the first antagonist encountered, who is defeated, but comes back later on in the anime as an ally. Of course, they usually have “their own reasons” for helping the protagonist. Or the new enemies are “even more evil” or something, and so the antagonist uses some convoluted logic to join forces with their former foe (the protagonist).
So yeah, this one is very cliché, but I really enjoy it anyways. Antagonists often are cooler than protagonists, as well as more realistic. They usually have real reasons, and feel closer to reality with their own faults and selfishness. It’s just refreshing to see turncoats on the good team when the protagonist is usually just the typical “justice / friendship” paragon of virtue.
2. Wet Clothes = Cold
I’ll find a way to include a cold cliché in all of these posts! Japan / anime are just really funny when it comes to colds. And so this time around we have the wet clothes will cause you to catch a cold.
I already did “wet = cold”, but this one is more specific to the clothes, so I think it’s ok. The most common situation for this is that someone’s clothes get wet somehow, and so they IMMEDIATELY have to do laundry. Even if it’s at someone else’s house. “You’ll catch a cold in those wet clothes!” is the common phrase. This usually leads to a character being stuck at someone else’s house while their clothes are being washed / dried. All to avoid that deadly anime cold that leaves you bedridden.
When I was in high school I once got yelled at by my boss at my part time job for showing up to work soaked head to toe, because I had walked to work in the pouring rain. But I didn’t catch a cold! I worked for 4 hours in wet / damp clothes and survived somehow.
While we’re on this topic, having wet socks is the worst of all. I used to have to walk to school (~50 min walk), and many times the sidewalks wouldn’t be plowed after a large snowfall. Walking to school in sometimes knee-deep snow almost always left my socks completely soaked (I didn’t wear boots, which I should have). It’s an awful feeling, being stuck in wet socks while wearing shoes for hours. The socks don’t really dry when you are wearing shoes. I can’t really describe it but keep your socks dry folks, don’t suffer like I used to.
1. Getting “Drunk” Off Non-Alcoholic Drinks
It’s usually juice too. “So and so can’t handle their juice”. How is this possible? Is it some crazy kind of placebo that someone can get hammered off of regular juice? Or maybe I am just missing something, and it’s not actually juice all along.
The question is, is it actually non-alcoholic juice, or is it just an anime’s way of pretending the characters aren’t drinking because they are underage, when really they are just drinking alcohol. I always thought it was just juice, but now that I think about it…
What do you all think about this one?
Either way, it’s pretty common. Not always juice too. Sometimes characters get “drunk” off of specific foods. It’s a pretty weird cliché if you think about it. I understand that the purpose is to create comedic “drunk” situations with underage characters who can’t officially drink alcohol. But to use non-alcoholic drinks or even food to achieve this is pretty odd.
And now I just wonder if the whole cliché went over my head, and that when a character gets “drunk” off of “juice” they were actually just drinking alcohol…
That’s all for this post anyways. It had been a while since I’d written a list, so I decided to put this one together, even if it is just listing arbitrary clichés.
I’m almost halfway through Legend of the Galactic Heroes, so I’ll probably write a post about it once I’ve gotten there.
Until next time!
Thanks for reading.