Light Novel / Suka Suka

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/sukasuka_kutori_crying_0.png
You'll probably be crying too.
'Shuumatsu Nani Shitemasu ka? Isogashii desu ka? Sukutte Moratte Ii desu ka?', ('What do you do at the end of the world? Are you busy? Will you save us?) or Sukasuka, officially translated into English as WorldEnd is a fantasy light novel series by Akira Kureno that gained an anime in the spring 2017 anime season.

Five hundred years have passed since the humans went extinct at the hands of the fearsome and mysterious 'Beasts.' The surviving races now make their homes up on floating islands in the sky, out of reach of all but the most mobile of Beasts.

Only a small group of young girls, the Leprechauns, can wield the ancient weapons needed to fend off invasions from these creatures. Into the girls' unstable and fleeting lives, where a call to certain death could come at any moment, enters an unlikely character: a young man who lost everything in his final battle five hundred years ago, the last living human awakened from a long, icy slumber.

Unable to fight any longer, Willem becomes the father that the girls never had, caring for and nurturing them even as he struggles to come to terms with his new life, in which he feels the pain of helplessly waiting for his loved ones to return home from battle that his 'Daughter' once felt for him so long ago. Together, Willem and the girls gradually come to understand what family means and what is truly worth protecting.

The original Light Novel was completed at 5 volumes, and was originally published from Nov 1, 2014 to Apr 1, 2016. A sequel novel entitled 'Shuumatsu Nani Shitemasu ka? Mou Ichido Aemasu ka?' ('What do you do at the end of the world? Can we meet once more?') or Suka Moka was announced, and started being published on Jun 27, 2016 to the present.

The anime series is available for legal streaming subbed on Crunchyroll here, and dubbed on FUNimation here.

This work provides examples of:

  • Action Girl: All the Leprechauns (at least, the older ones) qualify, as they've been raised to be weapons against the Beasts since birth. The female Regal Braves Willem knew before humanity went extinct also count.
  • Action Prologue/Cold Open: The anime opens in the middle of a battle scene with the Beasts, showing several characters injured, dying or dead, and then jumps back to Willem's first meeting with Chtholly. (This flash-forward doesn't occur in the books, however.)
  • Adapted Out: Shiantor the Lamenting First Beast doesn't get to show up or even get a mention in the anime despite being the most dreaded Beast in the light novels' setting. This is averted with her human identity, Almaria, however, but the reveal about her and Shiantor being one and the same person was also cut out as a consequence.
  • After the End: Played with. While a lot of species survived the apocalypse, they are restricted to living on floating islands in the sky. Humanity, with the sole exception of Willem, alongside elves and dragons are entirely extinct.
  • Awful Truth: The 17 Beasts responsible for destroying the world are actually the original native lifeforms of the world, which had been converted into humans and other races by the Visitors in the ancient past, but reverted to their old forms when the Visitors' power could no longer handle humanity's growing population. The post-apocalyptic barren desert that covers the surface is actually their original habitat, which also reverted to its old form.
    • To elaborate, it's heavily implied that the Visitors are ascended humans that, during their space journey lose sight of their homeworld, grew nostalgic, chose a random planet then used their power to transform it and its inhabitants into a copy of their homeworld and finally spit themselves to live among them because they were too powerful to live among them without hurting them. The world simply reverted because the Visitors 'curse' grew weaker over time.
  • Arc Words: "Welcome home" and "I'm back".
  • Bitter Sweet Ending:
    • Overlapping with Gainax Ending in the anime as it only adapted up to most of Volume 3 in the light novel series, skipping certain scenes and the final chapter that would give the adaptation a Sequel Hook. The party Willem and the Fairies accompany in their mission mostly survive and still manage to fix their own airship to get back home, but Chtholly dies saving a critically wounded Nephren and Willem, while the latter two are officially MIA. Reading further into Volume 3, however, confirms that Chtholly's efforts weren't for naught as, despite being injured, Nephren and Willem lived.
    • The finale scene of the anime makes it also a bitter sweet beginning as well. It's a flashback to Chtolly's 'birth' with the fairies collecting her giving her a glum welcome while nonetheless happy that she's now part of their lives.
    Older Leprechaun: Welcome, little one. Welcome to this fragile dying world with no redeeming qualities whatsoever. We're happy to have you.
  • BFS: The weapons used to defeat the enemies of the Emnetwihts, comprising of various talismans, are huge compared to their wielders.
  • Call a Pegasus a "Hippogriff": The girls, while informally referred to as fairies, are officially classified as leprechauns, despite fitting the former term and having little to nothing in common with Real Life conceptualizations of the latter.
  • Call a Rabbit a "Smeerp": Humans are called emnetwihts in the series. note 
  • Child Soldiers: The leprechauns all qualify as this, with Chtholly, the oldest, being just fifteen. The Braves back when the humans were still around also count, as Willem and his old friends were teenagers when they fought against the Visitor, Elq Hrqstn, a year before the apocalypse of the surface world.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: This work constantly balances on the brink of depressive science fiction and Slice of Life with attractive Love Interest and cute little girls.
  • Curtains Match The Windows: Numerous characters in the story have eyes that match the color of their hair. Among the Leprechauns shown, it seems that Nephren is the only exception to this rule.
  • Deconstruction: Of Heroism. But unlike other franchises that deconstruct the morals behind heroism, Suka Suka instead asks the question of what is means to be a hero. Are they average people that just want to do the right thing (Like Willem) or people that have fantastical or tragic backstories (being descended from royalty, having learned powerful magic from family, being a demi god, having a demon sealed inside you as a child, or a dragon having destroyed your village and everyone you love in it) who are driven to fight as much as they can?
  • Developing Doomed Characters: Throughout the series, we see our heroine Chtholly grow from a soldier who was willing to die on the battlefield only Because Destiny Says So, to a girl who begins to hesitate over it because she realizes that she still wants to live her life like a normal person, to a young woman who accepts the inevitability of her tragic fate but still wants to have the life she's begun to embrace after Willem made her see how happy she is just by being with those she loved. Naturally, as true to this trope, she dies at the end of the anime (midway in the light novel series) once her character development came at full circle.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: The sounds and expressions the girls make whenever Willem treats them from venenum poisoning. The anime upped the fanservice by making the activity look a lot more erotic than it should be.
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: The opening theme is performed by Chtholly's voice actress, Azusa Tadokoro.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Rhantolk and Nopht show up in the anime's opening credits first before making their official debuts in episode 7. Both also appear in the Action Prologue first before they're officially introduced later on.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The 17 Beasts. Also, maybe barring Elq, the Visitors as well.
  • Evolving Credits:
    • The visions Chtholly sees in the segment where she's being turned to ice in the anime's opening changes depending on the events that would happen in the episode, much like how Angel Beats! does it. Apart from that, the colors in the title and Elq's ribbon in her segment change steadily as well.
    • Also, once Rhantolk and Nopht finally make their debut, they were added alongside everyone in the final scene of the ED credits.
  • Fantastic Racism: The Emnetwiht (a.k.a. humans) were said to have been responsible for the calamity that forced the other races to flee to the floating islands. This is why, in some places, the Petting Zoo People races look down upon "the featureless", or races with no animal-like physical features.
  • Fattening the Victim: Willem is very suspicious of the troll Nygglatho preparing dinner for him when he first arrives at the dormitory, and accuses her of this.
  • Foregone Conclusion: Too fast (for a romantic anime) the development of the relationship between the central couple quickly makes their sad end pretty obvious.
  • Floating Continent: Due to the surface world being overrun by Beasts, civilization has instead relocated to an interconnected network of floating cities, (mostly) out of reach from most of the Beasts' attacks.
  • Gainax Ending: Anime has an easy version of this. It's pretty obvious that Chtholly died, but the show does not give a clear answer about the fate of William and Nephrena, creating a false Broken Aesop. And if it was not yet difficult to understand, we see the birth of a girl very similar to someone...
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Averted. The reader learns that, rather is lead to believe that a human organization called the True World Re-imagination Hymnal Choir, a.k.a. "True World", was responsible for the unleashing of the 17 Beasts, which resulted in the apocalypse which wiped out all other life on the surface world. But as the reader finds out much later, they didn't the apocalypse would have happened anyway without True World's help because the curse that kept the world in it's then current form faded. In fact, one of the two factions of True World was actually trying to prevent the apocalypse, but failed. (See the Awful Truth spoiler above.)
  • Growing Up Sucks: Willem feels this way on behalf of the leprechauns, because for them, being mature entails being drafted into a war against the Beasts that has already claimed the lives of many of their kind.
  • Hope Spot:
    • This trope crops up when Nygglatho examines Chtholly and deems her to no longer be a leprechaun, leading readers to think that the latter would be removed from active duty and allowed to live Happily Ever After with Willem. These hopes are dashed, however, when Chtholly accompanies Willem in rescuing Nopht and Rhantolk from the surface after they are stranded due to an attack by the Beasts. Tragically, Chtholly does not survive the mission. To twist the knife further, her encroachment has almost fully set in by then. As such, even if she did not accompany Willem, or survived the mission, Chtholly, as the readers and the other characters would have been familiar with, is effectively dead.
    • Related to the above spoiler, Willem managing to find the Kaliyon Lapidemsibilus, the weapon that prevents its user from experiencing mental deterioration is this as not only does Willem end up not using it anyway, but Chtholly dies in the finale, making his quest of finding the Kaliyon to prevent her from losing her memories effectively pointless.
  • How We Got Here: The anime starts off with the climax of the third volume, as described above in the Action Prologue, with the characters shown mortally wounded and with a blank-faced Chtholly walking forward to her own death. After that, the rest of the episode and the ones that follow it tell the story of how everything happened before it got to that point.
  • Humanoid Abomination: The Visitors, or as far as one seen.
  • If We Get Through This...: The second half of the show has a lot of it because the dreams of William and Chtholly about their future life together are becoming more optimistic and sweet.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Nygglatho, the girls' other caretaker, is a troll, and eats human (or humanoid) flesh. She comments that Willem smells absolutely delectable, and occasionally threatens to eat the children if they don't stop running around after bedtime.
  • Just a Flesh Wound: Almita, one of the younger girls, waves off falling down a ravine and getting an open gash on her head trying to get a ball back for the other girls to play with. Justified due to their lack of fear of dying, as having no fear of death makes them more efficient against the 17 beasts.
  • Long Title: It has three sentences!
  • Loss of Identity: This is what eventually happens to all Leprechauns who experience a phenomenon known as The Encroachment. It's when the Visitor Elq Hrqstn completely subsumes the original's personality and takes over it as her own, effectively killing off the Leprechauns' original personality. It already happened to Ithea when she was younger, though she managed to hide the fact. Chtholly begins to experience the symptoms as the series progresses. However, as the reader learns later, Elq is "immortal yet dead", and the leprechauns are actually temporary reincarnations of the shattered pieces of Elq's soul. So in a sense, she *is* the original personality.
  • Lotus-Eater Machine: The Shinator's main, and most powerful ability under its arsenal is to create illusory worlds that trap its victims in this trope. Willem and Nephren find themselves imprisoned in one during volume 4.
  • Love Confession: Chtholly briefly confesses to Willem at the end of the fifth episode, as she is walking past him. She says it again, this time more definitely, at the end of the next episode.
  • Memento Macguffin: The blue pendant Chtholly wears on her neck previously belonged to an older Leprechaun she looked up to back when she was still a child. The anime's epilogue shows that after Chtholly herself died, Tiat inherited it and is shown wearing it the same way Chtholly did. Both times are symbolic in that they show the older leprechauns passing over their duties to their eventual successors.
  • Medieval Stasis: Averted. While much magical knowledge was lost with the fall of humanity, the technology level of society has actually advanced. Regule Aile seems to be at an early 20th century level with many instances of magitek not found in Willem's time.
  • Men Can't Keep House: Shortly after boarding the Plantaginesta, which largely houses male soldiers, Chtholly discovers that it is incredibly filthy. Deciding to make herself useful, she starts cleaning up the ship, and endearing herself to the hearts of the men onboard in the process.
  • Killed Off for Real: A very rigid form of this for leprechauns. In a way, the Leprechauns "die" after they begin to experience Encroachment, where their original personalities are subsumed and completely overwritten by Elq's, or at least, a new blank slate from her, and the original identities of the Leprechauns are effectively "dead" in the spiritual sense. Of the characters we know, only Chtholly manages to get into some kind of astral "heaven", since she returns to Elk before the complete loss of her identity.
  • Not Afraid to Die: By nature, the Leprechauns have little to no fear of death, making them more effective when fighting against the Beasts, and making it easier for them to accept their inevitable fates on the battlefield should it happen one day. Best shown when Almita shrugs off a big bleeding gash on her head after falling off a ravine without caring about it much. However, it seems like this may change as they grow older, as Chtholly does have conflicting feelings about dying in battle. Interestingly, while they don't personally mind dying in the battlefield themselves, they would mind if a comrade of theirs did, and would even mourn their loss as shown when Nopht mistakenly thought that Chtholly died while trying to retake the islands during episodes 4-5.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: Souwong describes the leprechauns to Willem as ghosts who were crafted from the souls of dead children, but they have little to nothing in common with conventional depictions of ghosts.
  • Petting Zoo People: Describes most of the people living on the sky islands, to the point that the races that aren't Petting Zoo People are commonly referred to as "Disfeatured".
  • Power Gives You Wings: The leprechauns are capable of using their venenum to create wings on their backs which allow them to fly.
  • Priceless Paperweight: Whilst Collon is suffering from a prolonged cold, Willem removes one of the talismans comprising Seniorious and directs Chtholly to put it under Collon's pillow, revealing that it prevents nightmares while the user is suffering from a cold. Nygglatho understandably freaks out at a piece of a priceless and ancient legendary weapon being used in such a manner.
  • Ship Tease: Between Chtholly and Willem. Played with in that while Chtholly definitely has feelings for him, it's ambiguous if Willem reciprocates them or not. However, the fact that in the fourth episode he rushes precisely to her, says all the same in the direction of reciprocity.
  • Standard Snippet: The classic English ballad "Scarborough Fair" is used during Willem and Chtholly's walk to the top of the city on Island 28.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: Willem and Chtholly.
  • The Stinger: The final episode ends with one. Suowong uses his magic to attempt to locate Willem after he and Nephren go MIA through finding his heartbeat. After Suowong leaves to greet a guest who arrived, the basin of water he used his magic on begins to detect two pulses, indicating Willem and Nephren's survival.
  • Taking You with Me: The Leprechauns have the ability to "open the Gate", a dangerous but powerful technique that lets them overload their Venenum and have it explode in the entire area they're standing on, allowing them to wipe out all surrounding Beasts that are in that area with them at the cost of their own life. It can also happen accidentally should they overuse their Venenum as well.
  • Tastes Like Friendship: Where they previously were timid and showed avoidance towards him, Willem manages to win over the girls by feeding them a pudding he knew how to make from his past.
  • Team Dad: Willem becomes this to the Leprechauns when he moves to the weapons facility they live in.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: The Beasts were actually the Emnetwihts' original forms before the Visitors came and changed the races into their own image.
  • Tomato Surprise: At the end of the first novel, it is revealed that the first beast, Chanteur, is The Daughter. At the time of publication, the series was planned to be canceled after the second volume, so the author may have put this spoiler in earlier than he really wanted to; in the anime, this scene is skipped, which seems to confirm that.
  • Tragic Hero: It's a prerequisite to become a Regal Brave. One must also be this in order to be worthy of wielding Seniorious. The more tragic the background, the better Seniorious will be in combat.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Emnetwihts were one of the weakest races, but still ruled over much of the land.
  • We ARE Struggling Together: Regule Aile is actually a diverse collection of city states with many competeting interests. Only fear of the 17 Beasts prevents conflicts from regularly arising between the islands. With the threat of Timere attacks reduced following Chtholly's battle with them, groups such as the Elpis Mercantile Federation immediately attempt to gain an edge over their rivals.
  • Wham Shot: The close up of Almita's bloody face when Willem checks on her after falling down in a ravine after getting a terrible open head wound. It sets the tone for what is to come for the series, as well as the living conditions of the girls.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Because the girls have no fear of death and are not life forms in the conventional sense, Souwong and Ebon have no qualms with sending them into battle against the Beasts in hopes of reclaiming the surface world. Willem, who has grown to care for the girls, naturally takes issue with this.
  • Wizards Live Longer: Souwong Kandel is this, from his wizard looks to the fact that he curses himself to cheat death and remove his heart.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Averted. Already in the fourth episode, Willem rushes to hug only Chtholly, when he finds out that they have survived, and then in the next, she confesses to him in love.
  • Winged Humanoid: The leprechauns are this when they use their venenum to create wings on their backs.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: One of the main differences between humans and Leprechaun is the unusual hair colors.
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