Marriage Then Romance YKTTW Discussion

Marriage Then Romance
A couple gets married first, and have their romance later
Description Needs Help
(permanent link) added: 2012-07-01 04:23:09 sponsor: kjnoren edited by: spasticgoldfish (last reply: 2013-05-30 05:04:08)

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Rolled in examples. Would like some elaboration on some of them, especially those under live action tv that only list the marriage type.

Will probably launch this evening.


So…how does a fellow ask his own wife to marry him…?

Maybe it is an Arranged Marriage, maybe an Accidental Marriage, maybe it is a marriage of convenience like a Citizenship Marriage or a Mail-Order Bride. Our couple has been married, and they see it as a temporary thing, or a thing to get over with and avoid as quickly as possible.

However, instead they start to fall in love.

This can easily form the basis of romantic comedy, making it very easy for the people around the newly wedded couple to have, form, and get all sorts of mistaken impressions. Or impressions that are correct when formed, but invalid a few days later. Or receiving mixed messages from the married couple.

Compare Perfectly Arranged Marriage, which is focused on just one type of marriage and on the result, not on the romantic process. Also compare It Meant Something to Me, Becoming the Mask and Mail-Order Bride.


Anime and Manga

  • San and Nagasumi's marriage in My Bride Is a Mermaid... either they got married, or one of them would have to die.
  • In Ranma ˝ the title character is betrothed to Akane while they are both teenagers, however subsequent romance is constantly derailed by, Akane's hatred of men, the frequent appearance of other fiancees as well as Ranma's curse that causes him to change into a woman whenever he is splashed with water.
  • In Please Teacher! high school student Kei Kusanagi marries the alien who is posing as his home room teacher in order to protect her secret identity. They move in together and quickly fall in love with each other.
  • In Ah! My Goddess franchise the main character, Keiichi Morisato encounters a goddess who will grant one wish to him. He wishes that she stay with him forever. As far as the universe is concerned from that point on, the two are effectively married. They couldn't leave one another if they tried. In the process of finding a place to live and domestic life they fall in love with one another. (I'm not sure if they ever actually have a wedding.)


  • In Green Card Bronte and Georges join in a sham marriage to get a green card to the US and a good apartment. They can't stand each other, and are hunted by the INS, before they realise they love each other.
  • In Fools Rush In the couple Isabel & Alex have a one night stand in Las Vegas which results in pregnancy. They decide to get married, move in together and then actually get to know each other.
  • Raise the Red Lantern could be an example of how this sort of trope does not necessarily result in a happy ending. Songlian marries Chen as his fourth wife. Although she is initially indifferent to him, she soon becomes embroiled in the competition between the wives to seduce him and gain his undivided attention.
  • In Seven Brides for Seven Brothers a mountain man named Adam convinces a townswoman named Milly to marry him, promising an idealistic life in the woods. But when he gets her home she discovers that he failed to mention his six rowdy adult brothers who would also be living under the same roof. Despite her initial anger, she starts to fall in love with him, but their romance is derailed when he decides that since kidnapping one woman worked so well, they might as well head into town and grab themselves six more. Snowed in over winter, all of the girls warm to their captors and when spring arrives and their menfolk come to rescue them, they all manage to finagle shot-gun weddings instead.
  • In Shadowlands, the Bio Pic about C. S. Lewis, he marries Joy in a civil ceremony so that she can live and work in the UK. Then he falls in love with her, and after she develops bone cancer, they get married for real. This was Truth in Television.
  • Columbia Pictures 2006 biodrama Marie Antoinette starts with the marriage of King Louis XVI of France to Princess Marie of Austria. The two had never met until their wedding, which was made to solidify a treaty between France and Austria.


  • In Captain Vorpatril's Alliance by Lois McMaster Bujold the marriage was meant to be temporary, to get her out of a deportation and him out of a kidnapping charge.
  • Zane and Danica in Hawksong by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes. It's a political match -- their peoples have been at war for generations, they're the royal heirs, and they decide that they can make peace via a marriage alliance. It works, and they fall in love later.
  • In the short novel Islands by Eric Flint, Calopidius leaves for war shortly after his Arranged Marriage with Anna.
  • In Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber, Random is forced to marry a woman, to lend her some status even after he deserts her. However, when Corwin sees him later, he has brought his wife with him to the courts. He explains that they had actually fallen in love.
  • Moonraker's Bride by Madeleine Brent: The heroine enters a marriage of convenience with a man who's about to be executed; complications (and eventually romance) ensue when he's not executed after all.
  • Sarah Plain and Tall, a children's book published in 1985, later made into a movie and stage play, is about Sarah. a mail order bride who a widower named Caleb who has two young children. Their courtship happens after they are already living as man and wife.
  • In the novel Promised Land by Connie Willis and Cynthia Felice the main character, Delanna, returns to her home planet to inherit a large tract of land, but finds out that according to the planet's backward property laws, she has been legally married to her neighbor, and before she can divorce him, she must live together with him for one year. Rom-com ensues.
  • In the novel Cold Sassy Tree, the protagonist's grandfather, Enoch Rucker Blakeslee, marries his young, pretty employee Miss Love Simpson only weeks after the death of his wife. Blakeslee initially only wants to have a woman to cook and clean for him without burdening his adult daughters, but later admits to having feelings for Miss Love. The novel focuses on the impact of their relationship on the small Georgia town of Cold Sassy.
  • This is a common trope in pulp romance novels, like this one [1].

Live Action TV


  • In Fiddler on the Roof the marriage of Tevye and Golde was arranged and they have been together for years, having already raised all their children to adulthood, but it isn't until one of their daughters wants to marry for love that they start thinking about romance with one another. Their duet 'Do You Love Me?' lampshades, describes and plays out the trope.
  • Averted in Anne of the Thousand Days. The marriage of Henry VIII and Katharine of Aragorn was thorny from the outset, and deteriorated thereafter. One scene shows Henry VIII grousing about this: "I do not love that woman. That was a marriage of state: England married Spain."

Video Games

Web Comic

  • Marry Me. Pop-idol who doesn't want to go back into the dating scene impuslively accepts a marraige proposal by sign and gets married to him on stage that minute. But the guy who was holding the sign didn't especially want to get married to her - it wasn't even his sign. Eventually they fall in love.
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