Yuuta Togashi used to be a victim of chuunibyouTranslation "eighth-grader syndrome" — a sudden outburst of hyperactive imagination among second-year junior high kids and its associated delusions of grandeur — when he used to fancy himself as the "Dark Flame Master", causing him to become a virtual pariah. Eventually he becomes so embarrassed of his past delusions come first-year high school he decides to transfer to somewhere far enough that nobody from his middle school will attend, hoping to start anew with a much more normal life......Until the day he meets a strange girl with a medical patch over her right eye climbing down the balcony of his apartment. The girl — Rikka Takanashi — has just moved in with her older sister Touka, and believes her right eye to be cursed, explaining the eyepatch. Come next day, classes start, and Yuuta is nonplussed to find that she has become his classmate, and has declared him her "soulmate" after catching him on a nostalgia trip on a balcony of their school. And before he knows it, Yuuta comes face-to-face once more with the delusions he thought he grew out of, all the while trying to snap Rikka out of hers.Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai! ("Despite the adolescent delusions, I want love!") is a 2011 Light Novel series written by Torako and illustrated by Nozomi Ousaka, published by Kyoto Animation (no mistake here, this is the first (not anime original) property that the company owns full rights for), which also produced two anime adaptations for the Fall 2012 Anime lineup directed by Tatsuya Ishihara and written by Jukki Hanada, with American licensing by Sentai Filmworks: a Twelve Episode Anime series which adapts the first volume of the light novel, and a series of accompanying 5-minute shorts Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai! Lite!, found on the studio's YouTube channel. A second season has been green-lit for the Winter 2014 Anime season under the title Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai! Ren. There's also a movie called Takanashi Rikka Kai: Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai! Movie that premiered on September 2013: the movie retells the events of the first season but from Rikka's perspective, and adds new scenes.The Anime Network simulcasted the anime under the titles Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! and Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions -Heart Throb-. Both seasons can also be foundon Crunchyroll for the US and Canada. Madman Entertainment is streaming for Australia and New Zealand.If you were looking for the trope, Chuunibyou is a redirect to Mr. Imagination.
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Tropes Shared by the Anime and Light Novel
Bland-Name Product: Yuuta and Rikka's e-mail addressnote Since Japan has commercialized mobile Internet in early 2000s, Japanese have not been using SMS ("texting") to communicate between cell phones but use email instead. domain is "siftbank.ne.jp".
Break the Cutie: The second part of episode 10 seems to be this for Rikka. Everything is going right for her, she's confessed to Yuuta and had her feelings returned, she's going to perform as the Tyrant's Eye against Yuuta as the Dark Flame Master, and she has a few good friends supporting her. Then her one pillar of support crumbles right before the big show when Yuuta snaps...
Rikka's family in general seem to invoke this on her a lot. Although they mean well, in nearly every appearance they've had, they've emotionally hurt her.
Episode 11 brings a striking example of this trope with Yuuta's tirade towards Dekomori, which forces her to admit that none of her fantasies are real and breaks her spirit for the first and only time in the series.
The anime gradually becomes more serious as Rikka's past comes into play and her family begins pressing her into accepting the reality of her father's death and putting a load of the responsibility of that on Yuuta.
The first volume of the light novel is pretty lighthearted, but the second starts becoming more serious when Rikka accuses Yuuta of being unfaithful and forgetting their contract, before running off. Then she gets kidnapped, and the kidnapper makes Yuuta play a game with Rikka at stake.
Cringe Comedy: At least half of this is due to it hitting too close to home.
Death by Origin Story: Rikka's father in both the anime and light novels died years before the story takes place, and is a motivating factor for Rikka to take up the Wicked Eye and search for the Unseen Horizon.
Earn Your Happy Ending: Yuuta, when he realizes that Rikka wasn't coming back to the apartments, decides to go to her grandparent's house to help her resolve her issues and bring her back into his life.
Foreshadowing: Done in different ways in both Light Novel and the Anime:
Anime: The night after hot girl Shinka said she wants to visit him, Yuuta plays a Dating Sim suspiciously like Love Plus. In the game, his Relationship Values with the girl suddenly rose to a But Thou Must "Let's go home together!" stage with no action on his own. Yuuta suspected that implies he'd be "in for a Bad End"... It turns out Shinka is coming to his home to destroy the Mabinogion. Also, one of the first conversations that Yuuta has with Ishiki is about Ishiki's desire to establish a ranking of the girls in class by their appearance. Yuuta warns him that the girls will hate it if they find out about it. It turns out this isn't just idle chatter.
Light Novel: The same girl that Nibutani brags about knowing Yuuta's past from was actually the cause of Nibutani becoming chuuni.
Light Novel: Ishiki. As a member of the Disciplinary Committee, it's his responsibility to make sure his schoolmates practice proper decorum... But Ishiki himself is an unrepentant pervert, whose favorite topic of conversation is anything and everything about their cute female peers. Yuuta even comments on how strange and disturbing this is.
Anime: Shinka. In the light novels she's a completely recovered chuunibyou, so her dislike to chuunibyou can be justified. Yet, in the anime, a glimpse into her room in Episode 9, complete with a Suspiciously Specific Denial, would show she's still a chuunibyou.
Longing for Fictionland: Pretty much the definition of chuunibyou given to the audience, with the infected person being unsatisfied with reality and immersing themself within a world of fantasy. In both the anime and the light novels, Rikka plays this the straightest out of the cast.
Love Epiphany: Happens at different times by different characters depending on whether you're watching the anime or reading the light novel.
In the light novel, Togashi gets one and talks to Isshiki about it, who helps him understand his feelings with a bit of invoked Green-Eyed Epiphany.
In the anime, Rikka gets hers after episode 8 and is helped along by Nibutani to really understand what she's feeling.
Love Triangle: Subverted. In episode 6 of Ren, some of Shinka's classmates told Shinka they thought there was one between Shinka, Yuuta and Rikka "last year" (Season 1). However, even Yuuta did have a bit of crush on Shinka in the beginning of the first season, nothing gone further than that especially after episode 4.
Sensei-chan: Nanase "Nana-chan" Tsukumo. Exemplified best in the novel where, when the class goes on a field trip, it was easy to mistake her for being yet another student.
Jade-Colored Glasses: Most cured chuunis wear some type of these, though they can differ. Some grow out of it on their own, while others have a pair beaten onto them by their family and friends.
Light novel: Rikka follows Yuuta around for a bit where she overhears him letting out his inner chuuni after he lends her his umbrella. This ends up putting them down the path to hitching up when she decides to make a contract with him.
Anime: Rikka follows Yuuta around during the time that she's living with Touka right after her father dies but before they move into their grandparent's house, admiring him while he screws around in his Dark Flame Master persona. It's more ambiguous whether she had a crush on him or not.
The climax of the Christmas OVA makes it seem like Rikka and Yuuta engaged in this. Turns out it was Sanae who accidentally smacked lips with Shinka. This ends up becoming a pivotal plot point in episode 8 of season 2 as well.
Arrow Catch: Rikka attempts to do this at the beginning of episode 3 with a piece of folded up paper shot by Yuuta with a response to her question on it. But she doesn't quite catch it in time, so the paper "arrow" flies in between her fingers, and smacks her in the face.
Art Shift: Yuuta, when Touka plays an audio clip of his Old Shame so deliberately loud that Kumin could hear.
A much more serious but subtle one is how in Episode 11, the colors are much less saturated, the lighting less bright, and the music is subued and downright dreary when it does appear; symbolizng the end of childhood-wonder as Rikka finally accepts reality.
Bald of Awesome: Though Isshiki grows his hair back, Kumin seems rather fond of his baldness.
Barehanded Blade Block: Discussed and attempted in episode 9 of season 2. Rikka attempts to do it, but despite her best efforts, she fails. Made more hilarious by the fact that the wooden sword used was swung by a young girl who appeared to be about 7 years old. Sanae tries it later, but fails to stop it as well.
Battle Cry: "VANISHMENT THIS WORLD" seems to the universal phrase to commence a delusion battle.
Break Them by Talking: Yuuta gives one to Sanae at the end of episode 11 after she berates him for not supporting Rikka's delusions, forcing her to admit that for all her delusions, she's never been able to fight a monster or summon a weapon, and that delusions like that are pointless in the long run.
Brick Joke: The twisted game of house that Touka and Yumeha were playing together where they are divorcees keeps popping up in random places.
It's first brought up in episode 5 after Yuuta comes back home after tutoring Rikka and sees them playing house in his room.
He finds them talking about it again when he comes back after he and Rikka confess to each other in episode 10.
The two of them talk about "being able to see the kids" in front of everyone in episode 11 before Touka leaves for her flight to Italy which surprises everyone but Yuuta.
In the OVA: "By the way, the world wasn't destroyed." (In 2012)
Broad Strokes: While sharing the same general outline in terms of plot, the events in anime differs in many aspects from the light novel it's based on — for example, while Rikka and Yuuta live in the same apartment complex in the former, in the latter they live in opposite directions from the train station. The production team admitted this much before the show even began airing though (see Adaptation Expansion).
There are a bunch of things that happens in episode 11 that mirror things that happened in earlier episodes. They're mostly there to see how much Rikka has changed from the events of the previous episode, and how no one is really happy with the way things played out. The train station and drinks scene from episode 1, the convenience store food scene from episode 8 and the bridge lights scene from episode 9, as well as Yuuta putting away his chuuni related things from episode 1 are all mirrored to show how subdued Rikka has become without her delusions.
During Rikka's Stalker Without A Crush phase two years before the present story, she has seen the entire scene in episode 3 of Lite when Yuuta carried a rifle to escort Kuzuha.
Colour Failure: In episode 2 of the second season, Yuuta has it after knowing Rikka pretty much used up all the money Touka gave her (in the area of 280,000 yen!) to fund her delusions.
Comedic Spanking: Yuuta does this to Rikka in episode 2 of season 2 after finding out that the latter spent almost every bit of money her sister sent her as a living allowance on some night vision goggles.
Contrived Coincidence: Touka confronting Yuuta about her job opportunity in Italy and pressuring him to make Rikka face reality the moment he gets home after he and Rikka confess to each other and the day before the school festival where they are supposed to perform as their chuuni personas.
Four Is Death: Dekomori Sanae is the fourth person to join the Far Eastern Magical Nap Association, and her Verbal Tic is overusing the word "desu" because it sounds like "death" when pronounced in Japanese.
In fact in the novels, English is the only subject Rikka is slightly good at as it's the only thing she can associate with her delusions. Her other subjects are simply abysmal there.
The last episode features a letter labeled "Flom Dark Flame Master".
Gratuitous English + Gratuitous French: "Black Raison d'Ętre", the mail address given to Rikka by Yuuta, and also the name of the group singing the ending credits song.
Heroic BSOD: Rikka goes through one in episode 8 when Touka berates her for her delusions and living in the past and it's implied that she goes through another in episode 10 when Yuuta tries to make her see reality as well.
Sanae goes through one in episode 11 when Yuuta denies her delusions after he lets Rikka go see her father's grave with her mom.
Rikka found out about Yuuta's 'Dark Flame Master' persona after seeing him put on the act one last time before school. In his defense, he really wanted it out of his system and he thought no one was around to see.
Sanae got herself entangled on her very long hair after trying to use it like... bolas.
Sanae, in Ep 4, got dizzy after spinning around at an attempt to attack Shinka.
Homeschooled Kids: Near the end of the series, when the characters are enjoying the holiday at Rikka's, Tsuyuri reveals to Shinka that she never had a boyfriend because she was homeschooled for the entirety of elementary and middle school. This may well explain her strangeness.
Intoxication Ensues: Rikka and Sanae in the bonus OVA after ingesting alcoholic Christmas cake.
It Runs in the Family: It sounds like the females in the Takanashi household have the tendency to run away from reality. Rikka's mother ran away physically while Rikka herself does that mentally, and Touka pretended it never existed.
Karma Houdini: Touka, who gets her happy ending when Rikka is forced to get over her chuunibyou and goes to Italy to pursue her dream of becoming a master chef while everyone back in Japan angsts and struggles with the situation that she left behind.
Konami Code: Rikka uses this code on a soda machine, with arm gestures. She gets a free drink.
'B' is Banana and 'A' is apple.
Large Ham: Several of the actors in episode 3, especially the one boasting that he has to be defeated to pass.
Level Ate: The Chuunibyou battle in the Christmas OAV.
First, Rikka attempts to form her club, but doesn't have enough members. So she tries to claim her cat as a member, but Nanase won't allow it due to the cat not being a human. She then channels a split personality to claim as the "fifth" member who only speaks English, but Nanase plays along, and uses more English than Rikka knows. She then feigns a sickness, and then claims her personality is no longer there. Nanase then states that since they no longer have a "fifth" member present, she can't approve the club.
Despite the setbacks however, Nanase does allow a legitimate loophole for them. They can form a club, on the condition that they clean up an unused room first. While it takes a while due to the girls mostly goofing off rather than cleaning, they eventually do it, and Nanase allows them to form their club with only four members.
Midseason Upgrade: Yuuta gives Rikka a new umbrella for her birthday in episode 7 of season 2. He claims her old one was getting worn out, and she seems quite happy with it.
Mistaken for Cheating: Happens several times in season 2 with Yuuta regarding his childhood friend Satone. Rikka becomes an Insecure Love Interest, and constantly thinks he's cheating on her anytime she sees him with Satone, who also plays The Tease towards him, especially in episode 7. However, Satone makes her peace with Rikka, claiming that she started losing interest the whole chuunibyou shtick in middle school, but also sensed she'd be a Hopeless Suitor towards him, especially since he forgot the meaning of that coin she gave him. She pulls an I Want My Beloved to Be Happy and says that Yuuta belongs to the latter, and she'll stay as Sophia instead. She then disappears after telling Yuuta to come to the harbor so they could be alone together for the rest of the day.
Mood Whiplash: Happens a few times in the latter half of episode 7. Also, the episode itself relative to the previous ones.
Moral Dissonance: Though Played for Laughs, the end of the series has Yuuta basically kidnapping Rikka and resisting police custody, Isshiki pretending to be a molester to harass/distract a perfectly innocent police officer, and Dekomori and Kumin physically harassing/blocking an old man. That's a little messed up when you think about it.
My God, What Have I Done?: While Yuuta is relieved in a way that he helped snap Rikka out of her chuunibyo phase, he also can't help but feel that she seems to be suffering from a lack of it as well, especially after she moves back into her grandparent's house. Sanae's What the Hell, Hero? rant towards him in episode 11 finally hits home once he realizes Rikka wasn't coming back, probably because he told her all that giving up all that stuff was for the best, not realizing that it also meant she wouldn't want to see him either due to him being a constant reminder of it. He rushes off to her grandparent's house on Isshiki's bike in the middle of the night.
Rikka's family hiding her father's illness from her in order to protect her. Granted she was a child and probably would have had a hard time dealing with it. But his sudden death makes it very hard for her to accept it.
Yuuta's speech to Rikka about giving up her chuunibyo stuff. While it seems okay at first, Rikka seems very unhappy, and ultimately decides that it would be best to move away from him, so as not to be reminded of that stuff any longer.
No Name Given: The fake Mori Summer. Her name is not mentioned in-episode, and instead is listed in the after-episode credits instead (where it's revealed that her name is Natsumi Tokugawa).
Relationship Upgrade: Rikka and Yuuta confessing to each other in episode 10. Though with all the stuff that happened afterwards, they don't get much time to enjoy it...
Romantic Comedy: The first half of season 1. Then the second half kicks in. While there's still some comedy, it's downplayed in favor of the more serious dramatic and tearjerker moments.
Romantic Two-Girl Friendship: Rikka and Dekomori, although it's more toned down than many examples since the real romance is between Rikka and Yuuta.
Rule of Symbolism: In the beginning of the first episode, Yuuta put his Chuunibyou-era props to the balcony, planning to trash his Old Shame altogether. At the end of the episode, he put them back into his closet, symbolizing he couldn't put away his chuunibyou past yet.
Rikka pulling off her eyepatch in front of everyone at the end of episode 10, revealing that she no longer has her Magical Eye.
Rikka's actions throughout episode 11, which rather disturbingly mirror Yuuta's actions in the beginning of episode 1.
And makes a blatant reference to Kami Nomi in the process.
In episode 4 Sanae chants the first, second, and last line of Lina's Dragon Slave spell. Including the actual name of the spell, just in case you didn't catch it.
In Episode 4 Sanae also mentions the infamous "OVER 9000" line from Dragon Ball Z, except replacing "9000" with "200,005,000".
In episode 5, Rikka is at the shrine and unable to recover from learning that her math skills are worse than Dekomori's, who is younger than her. Yuuta then remarks "It's like getting up to 300% damage in Smash Brothers."
In episode 5, Sanae states that to 'face' the 7*x or above in the multiplication table, you'll need the Level Upper.
During the last scene in the Christmas OVA when Rikka is descending to Yuuta's balcony, the moon and night sky behind her is an eerie green color.
In the second episode of Ren, Rikka said she said a dolphin in the word processor. She's referring to Kairu, a East Asia-exclusive Office Assistant that appears in Microsoft Office versions 97-2007. She also noted "in the English version, my fish is a paperclip instead." Most viewers should still remember Clippy.
Rikka Takanashi's home town is modeled very closely after Kami in the Hyougo prefecture, Key Visual Arts based their visual novel Air in the same city.
Spike Balls of Doom: Sanae substitutes the sand bags at the end of her pigtails with a couple of these for a few seconds to better attack Yuuta with.
Spin-Off: The BD-packaged specials "Chuunibyou Demo Koi Ga Shitai?: Depth of Field; it's Armored Core meets Chuunibyou, and it is EPIC.
Spit Take: Sanae does this to Shinka accidentally in episode 5 when the latter goes looking for her missing pom-poms.
Stalker with a Crush: The girl claiming to be the real Mori Summer in episode 8 of season 2. She can be seen stalking Sanae in earlier episodes as well, such as when Shinka has Sanae in a headlock during episode 4, or when Sanae, Shinka, and Kumin were watching Rikka and Yuuta shop.
Start My Own: Like Haruhi Suzumiya before her, Rikka forms her own school club, the "Far Eastern Magical Nap Association", which is more or less a legalized excuse to let her delusions run amuck with Yuuta, Kumin and Sanae tagging along, willing or not. It becomes a full-fledged club once Shinka actually applies, hinting to her past life as a chuuni herself.
In episode 4 of season 2, Shinka attempts to run for student council president. At first Sanae sabotages her efforts intentionally, but after Satone verifies Shinka as "Mori Summer", Sanae instead devotes herself to helping out Shinka instead. Things seem to go really well, and Shinka decides to don her chuunibyou ego for a moment to thank Sanae for all of her help. Sanae then accidentally blows Shinka's chances when she starts spouting off Mabinogion passages, causing Shinka to drop out of the race out of embarrassment. They then go back to the old methods, being at each other's throat...
Shinka and Sanae's Vitriolic Best Friends relationship comes up again in episode 8 of season 2 when another girl claims to be Mori Summer. At first Shinka is glad to be rid of Sanae and her old shame. But some of the others don't feel right about the new girl claiming to be her, and with some Training from Hell by Satone, Shinka ends up battling the "fake" Mori Summer, partly to save Sanae from the Stalker with a Crush, but also because despite not wanting anything to do with it, she still feels Mori Summer was her creation.
Dekomori comes out of nowhere to slide tackle Shinka while the latter is sitting in art class, then runs back out the door. They aren't even in the same grade (Shinka is in high school while Dekomori is still in middle school).
Both Rikka and Touka appear from under Yuuta's bed at different times. In the case of the latter, he wonders how she managed to fit under there in the first place. She mentions she was a gymnast in high school, and also grabs a copy of his porn magazine.
The Stinger: At the end of episode 10 in season 1, Yuuta and Touka watch as Rikka sings a song that the latter mentions was special to her father. After the credits roll, one of the hosts asks if it had special meaning. Rikka then takes off her eyepatch, to reveal she doesn't have her gold contact lens on any longer.
In episode 11 of the first season, Rikka says she's going to disband the club.
In episode 9 of season 2, Touka shows back up in Japan with a little girl in tow. She claims that said girl is her daughter and everyone practically does a Face Fault. Then she subverts the trope by and says she was lying, and the little girl is the daughter of the chef training her in Italy, who requested Touka bring her along. But nobody laughs at it, much like Kumin's attempts at jokes.
Wham Shot: The Stinger of episode 10, where Rikka takes off her eyepatch to reveal... a perfectly-normal blue eye.
Sanae gives a rather heartbreaking one to Yuuta after he lets Rikka leave to go see her father's grave in episode 11, telling him that Rikka had been waiting for him to call Rikka out on her total rejection of her chuuni persona and blaming him for her sudden change.
At the end of episode 10 in season 2, Satone tells Yuuta to go to Rikka after it starts to rain at the festival. She then jumps out into the rain in an attempt to bury her feelings for him once and for all, only to then get an emotional cheap shot when he returns a moment later and offers her an umbrella. She starts the waterworks and runs off due to not being able to hold in her feelings anymore.
Would Hit a Girl: Yuuta will give whoever he thinks deserves it a whack on the head, regardless of their gender.
Shinka does this in episode 12 to buy Yuuta and Rikka some time. She screams that there's a pervert trying to grope her, and tells Isshiki to play along. He confusedly does so, then runs away when the policeman who was observing Yuuta and Rikka then chases off after him. Several of the others hold off Rikka's grandfather so they can make their escape.
She does this again in episode 6 of season 2, claiming she heard some strange noises in order to distract the teacher so Yuuta could get Rikka safely out of his room and bring her back upstairs to the girl's hotel rooms.
Crash into Hello: After talking to Isshiki about Rikka, Yuuta accidentally crashes into her after spacing out while walking back to his seat after getting his math test back. Though technically it's not the first time that they've met.
Lethal Chef: Subverted. Rikka somehow is able to make a delicious cake despite not knowing how to cook and using unorthodox ingredients.
Red Herring: Early in the second novel, a random punk tries to hit on Rikka while Yuuta is getting something, and manages to get her name and school before Yuuta steps in. Near the end, Rikka gets kidnapped outside of the school and the kidnapper contacts Yuuta by phone and talks about taking Rikka for himself if Yuuta can't find her in time, with the voice distorted to the point that Yuuta wasn't able to recognize it at all. It turns out to be Satone, however, who actually wanted to break them up so that she could take Yuuta for herself.
Shaggy Dog Story: Yuuta spends most of the first novel going through a lot just to help Rikka review for her remedial exam in Mathematics, only for her to fail spectacularly at the end of the book. By the start of the second novel, Rikka still hasn't gotten any better, with her highest exam score a pathetic 30 out of a hundred.
In the first volume, pages 139 to 142, Yuuta and Rikka play video games that are heavily implied to be Parodiusnote Described as "a parody shooting game" whose cast includes an octopus and a penguin whose "other game" involves a golden apple. and a bizarre non-existent spin-off of Super Smash Bros..note Yuuta and Rikka disagree on whether the game's name is "Great Uprising" (which hews close to the series' Japanese name Dairantou Smash Bros., "Great Fray Smash Bros.") or "Sumabura" (A Japanese abbreviation of "Smash Bros.") and two of its characters is a yellow mouse with electric attacks and "the Pink Demon", yet it's explicitly mentionned as being a war game and not a beat-'em-up game, and the gameplay involves cutting up trees (impossible in Smash Bros. at the time the novel was written) ammo (only items in Smash Bros. use ammo, and Rikka says that the match they're playing has items disabled.) and meteor rain attacks (the only characters to have those are Ness and Lucas in Brawl, who can only use them with a Final Smash, which can only be obtained through items...).
In the second volume Rikka and Yuuta had a conversation that refers to Puella Magi Madoka Magica. Rikka asked Yuuta to make a contract to become a magical girl. Yuuta, after responding with "Homu?", replied while he likes that show as well, he couldn't help with the entropy thing much.
Blast reality. Burst it all into shreds. VANISHMENT... THIS WORLD!!!