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 her classmate, and has declared him her "soulmate" after catching him on a nostalgia trip on a balcony of their school. And before he knew 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.The Anime Network is simulcasting the anime under the title Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions!.
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.
Foreshadowing: Done in different ways in both Light Novel and the Anime:
Anime: The night after his crush 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 girl that Yuuta sent his infamous "I LOVE YOU FOREVER" SMS to? It's Satone Shichimiya, Rikka's rival for Yuuta's affections in the second book.
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.
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.
Tropes Unique to the Anime
Accidental Kiss: 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.
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.
Battle Cry: "BANISHMENT 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.
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.
The Leader: Rikka, who founded the club and is the most driven of the group in regards to magic.
The Lancer: Yuuta, who keeps Rikka and the rest of the group in check, but isn't very interested in the actual club activities.
The Smart Guy: Shinka, who is the most rational of the group and the one most in touch with outside events.
The Big Guy: Sanae, who doesn't really think for herself much and tends to be pretty trigger happy with her hair weapons.
The Chick: Kumin, who doesn't really do anything but sleep.
Sixth Ranger: Isshiki, who probably isn't actually in the club but started hanging out with them because of Kumin.
Team Pet: Chimera, who they manage to bring to school every so often despite pets not being allowed on campus.
First Kiss: Played with in the bonus Christmas OVA. The whole episode plays up Rikka and Yuuta trying to progress to this. Shinka and Sanae end up accidentally kissing instead.
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.
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.
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 a perfectly innocent police officer, and Dekomori and Kumin physically harassing an old man. That's a little messed up when you think about it.
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: 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.
Oh Crap: Yuuta's expression when Touka shows him an audio clip of one of his "Dark Flame Master" delusions.
Rikka upon being told that The Far Eastern Magical Nap Association of Summer would be disbanded if she didn't improve in Math.
Old School Building: Seemingly the location of the Far Eastern Magical Nap Association - after they provide free labour spring cleaning it.
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.
Rikka's wish to form a club as a means to find allies in search for the Ethereal Horizon isn't well received by Yuuta.
Only Kumin feels that there's a need for a "Nap Club."
Shipper on Deck: Practically the entire class ships Yuuta and Rikka. This is especially noticeable at the start of episode 3, where the entire class gathers around and starts applauding at Yuuta's accidental Indirect Kiss.
By episode 7, Nibutani makes it fairly clear that she believes Yuuta and Rikka are bound to be together eventually. Isshiki also takes a Yuuta/Rikka relationship as a given.
By episode 9, she's completely (and correctly) convinced and actively trying to get the two of them together.
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.
In episode 6, Rikka, Sanae, and Kumin are sounding off their various chuuni personas (including one given to Kumin), with all of them wearing the number Zero.
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.
Stealth Hi/Bye: 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).
What the Hell, Hero?: 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.
Wham Shot: The Stinger of episode 10, where Rikka takes off her eyepatch to reveal... a perfectly-normal blue eye.
Would Hit a Girl: Yuuta will give whoever he thinks deserves it a whack on the head, regardless of their gender.
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.) 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. BANISHMENT... THIS WORLD!!!