Literature / Mr. Men
And this is only about half of the cast.note 

"Happyland, The birds are happy, the worms are happy, the sun is happy."
Mr. Happy

Once upon a time, there was a man called Roger Hargreaves. In 1971, his son Adam asked him the question, "What does a tickle look like?" he answered it by creating Mr. Tickle. This became the first in a series of books about the Mr. Men and Little Misses.

The series involves various abstract people (mostly circles or other shapes with arms and legs) who each have a distinctive characteristic which defines them, and are named after that characteristic (Mr. Forgetful, Little Miss Trouble, Mr. Wrong, Little Miss Wise, etc.) Each of the original books stars one of the characters, who has a brief adventure revolving around their character trait. And the sun has a face on some occasions.

There have been three animated series based on the books. The first two, Mr. Men (1974/1983) and The Mr. Men And Little Miss (1995-1997), were based closely on the original stories. The third, The Mr. Men Show (2008), was a sketch show featuring the characters.

From 2004 to 2011, the Mr. Men characters were owned by Chorion; as of 2012, they are owned by Sanrio, the creators of Hello Kitty. Since Roger Hargreaves' death, Adam has continued the line with new books.

In 2017, an unusual Spinoff will be launched: a 12-book series and line of tie-in merchandise adapting characters from the beloved Science Fiction show Doctor Who into these books' art style and story format. Each book will feature one of the Doctor's many incarnations, with the titling convention of Dr. First, Dr. Second, and so on. Tropes featured in this spinoff have their own listing below.

Now has a character page

Mr. Men provides examples of:

  • An Aesop: Characters defined by negative traits such as Mr. Uppity and Little Miss Bossy usually learn better by the end of their own story... but when they reappear they still have these characteristics, because otherwise they wouldn't be that character any more.
  • Aesop Enforcer: They will frequently appear in titles involving the negative trait characters. Some of them are fantastic beings, while others are mundane.
    • Mr. Greedy is cured of his greed when he visits a giant's castle and finds a plate of enormous sausages, potatoes, and peas; the giant forces him to eat all of them, making him so sick that he goes right off eating vast quantities of food.
    • Mr. Uppity is cured of his snootiness by a goblin who casts a magic spell on him that makes him shrink to mere inches in height whenever he is rude to anyone.
    • Mr. Mean is taught a lesson by a wizard's spell that causes parts of his body to change into vegetables whenever he is mean to anyone (his "victims" are invariably the wizard in disguise).
    • Mr. Noisy finally stops shouting all the time when the townsfolk pretend they cannot hear him unless he speaks at a normal volume.
    • Mr. Grumpy stops being rude and abrasive to everyone he meets after Mr. Happy gets Mr. Tickle to tickle him every time he verbally abuses someone.
    • Mr. Chatterbox is cured of his Motor Mouth tendencies by a magic hat that grows until it completely covers him every time he starts talking.
    • Little Miss Naughty's behaviour improves dramatically after Mr. Small asks Mr. Impossible to turn invisible and tweak her nose every time she is about to perpetrate an act of sociopathy.
  • All Just a Dream:
    • The title character in Mr. Daydream is, as one would expect, just a daydream of a bored schoolboy, and he is woken up by his teacher at the end of the book. The Animated Adaptation ends with an Or Was It a Dream?, with Mr. Daydream making a final silent appearance and waving to the viewers.
    • During one of his many naps, Mr. Lazy has a nightmare about being ordered to do various exercises by Mr. Busynote  and Mr. Bustle.
  • Always Identical Twins: Little Miss Twins are a pair of identical twins; they are based on Roger Hargreaves' twin daughters, Sophie and Amanda.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: The Mr. Men and Little Misses are drawn in a variety of bright colours. Just to name two for each colour of the spectrum (plus pink and brown), Mr. Strong and Little Miss Scatterbrain are red, Mr. Clever and Little Miss Fickle are orange, Mr. Happy and Little Miss Sunshine are yellow, Mr. Nosey and Little Miss Neat are green, Mr. Worry and Little Miss Bossy are blue, Mr. Impossible and Little Miss Naughty are purple, Mr. Greedy and Little Miss Tiny are pink, Mr. Dizzy and Little Miss Dotty are brown.
  • Amusing Injuries: Mr. Bump.
  • Arcadia: Happyland, Mr. Happy's homeland, is a country where the trees are a hundred feet tall, the sun shines brightly, and all the animals and even the flowers are smiling happily.
  • Big Eater:
    • Mr. Greedy and his cousin, Little Miss Plump (later renamed Little Miss Greedy), are both defined by their enormous appetites.
    • Mr. Strong has a huge appetite, but only for one food - eggs, the source of his incredible physical strength.
    • Also, pretty much everyone who lives in Fatland except Mr. Skinny. (He goes to a doctor there about his lack of appetite, named Dr. Plump!)
  • Born Lucky: Little Miss Lucky. Oddly, she spends most of her story suffering constant bad luck, and the narrator even asks the reader if it seems strange that the story is called Little Miss Lucky; it turns out that her bad luck was All Just a Dream.
  • The Chew Toy: Mr. Bump.
  • Cloudcuckooland: Nonsenseland, home country of Mr. Silly and Mr. Nonsense, is a very strange place with equally odd inhabitants who would see our world as every bit as bizarre as we see theirs - in the book bearing his name, Mr. Silly wins a competition to come up with the silliest idea by painting the leaves of a tree green.note 
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Several of the Mr. Men and Little Misses seem to have disconnected their minds from the rest of their bodies.
    • Mr. Muddle is so named because everything he does ends up in a hopeless muddle. He wanted to live in the countryside but got muddled and built his house by the seaside instead, and when he tries to make a roast dinner of turkey, potatoes, peas, and gravy, he puts the turkey in the cupboard to cook and the potatoes in the fridge to boil, then peels the peas and tries to slice the gravy.
    • Little Miss Scatterbrain is constantly confusing the names of the other Mr. Men and Little Misses, and when she goes into town to buy sausages, she walks into a bank instead and asks for two pounds (of sausages), then wonders what the two notes the bank teller passes her are in aid of.note 
    • Mr. Rush is a guy who rushes around all day going... nowhere.
    • Mr. Nonsense, as befits his name, has a truly nonsensical way of looking at the world. He sleeps in a rowboat (he found a motorboat too uncomfortable) and eats oatmeal on toast for breakfast (he tried oatmeal sandwiches once but didn't like them).
    • Mr. Topsy-Turvy is the worst. He walks backwards, reads books upside-down (and starts from the last page), has a crazy-looking house, and talks in sentences with the words mixed up. Even worse, this behavior is catching; when he visited a city, the folks there started acting like him.
  • Constantly Curious: Little Miss Curious, as her name indicates, has an unquenchable thirst for answers to all sorts of questions, such as why the worms in Nonsenseland wear bow ties.
  • Cool Car: Mr. Funny's car. It's a shoe.
  • Distaff Counterpart: The Little Misses to the Mr. Men in general and some Little Misses to specific Mr. Men (Mr. and Little Miss Chatterbox; Mr. and Little Miss Busy; Mr. Happy and Little Miss Sunshine; Mr. Greedy and Little Miss Plump; Mr. Small and Little Miss Tiny, etc.). Some of them are even explicitly stated to be brother and sister.
  • The Ditz: Mr. Dizzy starts out living up to his name, coming up with bizarre answers to simple questions asked by a pig and an elephant purely to rub in how clueless he is (such as naming a mouse as a big animal with big ears). However, after drinking from a magic well, he becomes intelligent and turns the tables on them with style.
  • Ditzy Genius: Despite being a brilliant inventor (and proud of it), Mr. Clever is completely clueless with emotional or sensory questions. When Mr. Happy asks him for the world's funniest joke, he admits to knowing no jokes; when Mr. Greedy asks him for the world's tastiest recipe, he admits to knowing no recipes; and so on. When he tries to return to Cleverland in shame, he walks off in the wrong direction.
  • Does Not Know His Own Strength: Mr. Strong has an unfortunate habit of shutting his front and back doors so hard that they break off their hinges, and when he isn't paying attention to where he is going, anything in his path - a tree, a brick wall, etc. - ends up worse for wear.
  • Dub Name Change:
  • Every Girl Is Cuter with Hair Decs: The Little Misses. Even Little Miss Bossy.
  • Eye Glasses: Mr. Clever and Little Miss Neat are among the few characters who avert Skintone Sclerae by wearing glasses, the lenses of which are completely filled by the whites of their eyes.
  • Fish out of Water:
    • Mr. Quiet lives in Loudland. He moves away at the end of the book with Mr. Happy's help.
    • Mr. Skinny lives in Fatland. He copes and gets more of an appetite with Mr. Greedy's help.
    • Mr. Grumpy lives in Happyland. He changes his ways after Mr. Happy asks Mr. Tickle to tickle Mr. Grumpy whenever he is rude to someone.
    • Mr. Good lives in Badland. He goes for a walk and ends up in Goodland, where he moves to at the end of the book.
  • Flight: One of Mr. Impossible's abilities; he simply stands outside and flaps his arms, and away he soars.
  • Forgetful Jones: Mr. Forgetful has an absolutely terrible memory. When asked to tell Farmer Fields that one of his sheep is loose in the lane, he draws a blank when he actually encounters the farmer and instead tells him that a goose is asleep in the rain.
  • Four-Fingered Hands: The Mr. Men and Little Misses only have four fingers on each hand.
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You:
    • Implied in Mr. Mischief. At the end, the narrator asks the viewer to look out the window and asks:
    You can't see a small, mischievous figure anywhere, can you? Can you? Look harder.
    • Also implied in Mr. Tickle, where the narrator suggests the protagonist may be sneaking up on the reader even as he's reading the book.
  • Friendly Tickle Torture: Doing this to people is the whole of Mr. Tickle's character.
  • Fun Personified: Mr. Silly, Mr. Nonsense, and especially Mr. Funny.
  • Gentle Giant: Mr. Tall is very sensitive and self-conscious about his height, and has to be convinced by the other Mr. Men that his long legs are an advantage.
  • Giant Food: In Mr. Greedy, the title character visits a giant's castle and finds a plate of sausages the size of sofas, potatoes the size of beach balls, and peas the size of cabbages.
  • Grumpy Bear: Mr. Grumpy is rude and abrasive to everyone he meets, and regularly tears all of the pages out of a book in fits of unprovoked anger. The fact that he lives in Happyland, and is therefore the grumpiest person in town, does nothing to improve his mood (although it does bring him in contact with Mr. Happy, setting the events of his story in motion).
  • Hates Baths: Mr. Messy, as befits his name, hates taking baths, and has to be forced into the bathtub in the final act of the book bearing his name. He jokes afterward that, now that he is no longer messy, he'll need to change his name.
  • Here We Go Again: The title character in Mr. Fussy has his life thrown into chaos in every sense of the phrase by a visit from his long-lost (but not long enough in Mr. Fussy's eyes) cousin Mr. Clumsy, who leaves his normally immaculate house a wreck. At the end of the book, after Mr. Clumsy has departed, Mr. Fussy has only just restored order in his house when there is a knock at the door... revealing that now the similarly accident-prone Mr. Bump has arrived for a few days' visit.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Mr. Silly and Mr. Nonsense, who both live in Nonsenseland.
  • Holding Both Sides of the Conversation: When Mr. Chatterbox has no-one whose ears he can talk off, he resorts to holding conversations with himself, as though speaking to his own identical twin.
  • Insane Troll Logic: Mr. Nonsense does this a lot, naturally. When asked why he likes oatmeal on toast, he replies, "Because I tried oatmeal sandwiches and I didn't like them!" When asked why he sleeps in a rowboat, he replies, "Because I tried sleeping in a motorboat but it was too uncomfortable!"
  • Invisible Anatomy: Mr. Sneeze lacks visible arms, most characters lack visible noses, and almost every character lacks visible ears. This does not stop them from doing things that require their unseen body parts.
  • Invisibility: Another of Mr. Impossible's abilities; if he concentrates hard enough, he becomes invisible. This comes in handy when Mr. Small enlists his help for the plan to make Little Miss Naughty start behaving herself; Mr. Impossible turns himself invisible and tweaks Little Miss Naughty's nose whenever she is about to wreak havoc.
  • I Should Write a Book About This: At the end of Mr. Small, the title character is introduced to an author of children's books (all but stated outright to be Roger Hargreaves) and writes a book about himself, which the reader is informed is the very book s/he has just read.
  • The Kiddie Ride: Jolly Roger made a Mr. Funny Car and a Mr. Bump see-saw. OMC Electronics made a Mr. Happy train in limited production numbers.
  • The Klutz: Several characters are defined by being hopelessly accident and/or injury prone.
    • Mr. Bump is always wrapped in bandages from previous accidents. He smashes three windows of his house while trying to put a ladder against it to fix a chimney pot, and cannot hold down a job for more than a day without losing or breaking or otherwise damaging something. At the end of the book, he finds a way to use his clumsiness to his advantage by getting a job at an apple orchard and simply walking around until he inevitably bumps into a tree and knocks apples out of it.
    • Little Miss Whoops, Mr. Bump's sister, is just as hapless as he is; she, too, is always wrapped in bandages from previous accidents.
    • Mr. Clumsy repeatedly trips over his always untied shoelaces, knocking things flying as he lands.
      • In his first appearance in Mr. Fussy as the title character's long lost cousin,note  he drops and/or trips over so many things that he leaves his Super OCD relative's house a complete wreck.note 
      • In Mr. Clumsy's own story, he manages to get the manager of his local bank covered in ink just trying to fill out a withdrawal slip, and ends up dragging the local chicken farmer into his duck pond when he stops to collect some eggs (the farmer says he'll deliver Mr. Clumsy's eggs henceforth - he insists).
  • Lions and Tigers and Humans... Oh, My!: The characters who appear to be simple shapes with human figures regularly interact with regular-looking humans.
  • Living Polyhedron: The Mr. Men and Little Misses are almost all shaped like circles, ovals, squares, rectangles, or triangles with arms, legs, and faces.
  • Lots And Lots Of Characters: There have been a total of 84 Mr. Men and Little Misses in the series, including upcoming characters Mr. Marvellous and Miss Fabulous.
    • Because it's adapting a long-running TV show that invokes this trope, the Doctor Who mashup line will qualify on its own, with all twelve Doctors, Susan Foreman, Sarah Jane Smith, River Song, Missy, the Cybermen, and the Daleks already set for appearances!
  • Meaningful Name: All of them. Mr. Happy is happy all the time, Mr. Strong is incredibly physically strong, Little Miss Neat is obsessed with cleanliness, Little Miss Fickle is incapable of making up her mind about anything, etc. The human characters also have names like Doctor Makeyouwell.
  • Mister Descriptor: The Mr. Men and Little Misses are all simply called "Mr./Little Miss (Personality or Appearance Trait)".
  • Motor Mouth: Mr. Chatterbox and his sister Little Miss Chatterbox are both defined by talking non-stop, even when there is no-one available to listen. Mr. Chatterbox is ultimately broken of his habit by a magic hat that grows to giant size when he talks too much, while Little Miss Chatterbox finds her true calling as a live version of the speaking clock.
  • Nice Hat: Most of them have one. In Mr. Chatterbox's book, someone slips him a magic hat that grows if he talks too much, usually covering him completely by the time he decides to clam up; by the end of the book, he gets the hint.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: The second half of Little Miss Brainy's story involves her trying to help various animals out of tricky situations - and ending up the worse for it every single time. A pig asks her how to get out of the tree in which he has found itself stuck, and she suggests the pig jump down, which he does - right onto Little Miss Brainy. An elephant asks her what to do about the knot in his trunk that is impairing his breathing, and she unties it for him - and is blown for miles by his newly unobstructed breathing.
  • No Indoor Voice:
    • Mr. Noisy starts out living up to his name. However, the local shopkeepers start pretending they can't hear him unless he speaks at a normal volume, and he eventually stops shouting all the time.
    • Little Miss Loud is a fellow Loudland resident of Mr. Noisy. As such, she only ever communicates by shouting at full volume.
  • Power-Up Food: Mr. Strong gets his incredible strength from his diet of eggs, eggs, and more eggs.note 
  • Protagonist Title: All of them get one, which doubles as A Day in the Limelight for each..
  • Rubber Man: Mr. Tickle, apparently. His book starts with him waking up hungry, so he reaches with one of his "extraordinarily long arms" out of his bedroom, down his stairs, into his kitchen, opens a cabinet, opens a jar where he keeps crackers, and takes out a cracker. Then he brings it back upstairs.
  • The Scrooge: Mr. Mean has plenty of money, yet when his story begins, he has not painted or otherwise maintained his house for years, while he makes his furniture from old orange crates (and complains about the price of nails).
  • Shrinking Violet: Mr. Quiet and his Distaff Counterpart Little Miss Shy. Mr. Quiet initially lives in Loudland (as does Mr. Noisy), where no-one can hear his almost inaudible voice, but later moves to Happyland at Mr. Happy's invitation and gets a job in a library. Little Miss Shy rarely ventures beyond her front garden, until Mr. Funny invites her to a party and she meets Mr. Quiet.
  • Skintone Sclerae: Almost none of the Mr. Men or Little Misses are drawn with whites to their eyes (Mr. Sneeze is a notable exception).
  • Snowlems: Mr. Snow is a snowman brought to life by Father Christmas (Santa Claus in the American version) to help him deliver presents; at the end of the book, the narrator claims that Father Christmas revives Mr. Snow via a different snowman every Christmas.
  • Spiky Hair: Little Miss Scary is drawn with spiky hair to make her look suitably intimidating.
  • Super OCD: Mr. Fussy spends endless hours straightening every last blade of grass in his garden, making sure the flowers are growing in perfectly straight rows, and picking the bits of orange rind out of an entire jar of marmalade. Needless to say, he does not react well when first Mr. Clumsy, then Mr. Bump show up at his house for a few days' visit.
  • Super Strength:
    • Mr. Strong's defining characteristic is his incredible physical strength. He lifts an entire barn, flips it upside down to fill it with water from a river, and carries the now much heavier barn to put out the fire consuming a farmer's cornfield. All without breaking a sweat.
    • Some of Mr. Impossible's impossible feats involve super strength, such as kicking a football so high that it has snow on it when it returns to the ground.
  • Title Theme Tune: The 1983 series. TWICE! Honestly, what else can the Mr. Men sing?
  • Walking Disaster Area:
    • Mr. Bump cannot do anything without something getting lost or damaged. He smashes three windows of his house with a ladder when trying to repair his chimney pot before it falls off, and he cannot hold down a steady job because of his accident-prone nature.
    • Little Miss Helpful. She's the type who always wants to help, but only makes the situation much worse by doing so.
  • Workaholic: Mr. Busy, of course. In his own book, he wakes up at six o clock, bathes, has breakfast, reads the paper, and cleans his entire house. When he's done, it's seven o clock. Then he has lunch with Mr. Slow next door, requiring him to mow Mr. Slow's lawn, which takes him five and a half minutes (he'd have finished in only five minutes, but had to mow around Mr. Slow). Then he goes home and cleans his entire house again!

The Doctor Who Spinoff line features the following tropes, mostly carried over from its source material:

  • Bowties Are Cool: The Eleventh Doctor is the Trope Namer, so naturally Dr. Eleventh wears a bowtie too.
  • Cool Shades: Dr. Twelfth has these as his Iconic Item.
  • Fake Crossover: This series is a whimsical recasting of Doctor Who characters and typical plotlines into a lighthearted children's book universe, not meant as canon to say the least!
  • Iconic Item: Each Doctor carries over his shoes and signature costume pieces/props to his abstract representation.
    • Dr. First: Monocle and walking stick.
    • Dr. Fourth: Fedora and overlong, rainbow-colored scarf.
    • Dr. Eleventh: Fez and bowtie.
    • Dr. Twelfth: Sunglasses.
  • Lighter and Softer: While Doctor Who has long been handled as a children's (in its original 1963-89 run) or family show (2005-onwards), it's rarely shied away from violent action, suspense, and outright horror elements. By design, this series presents a cuddlier version of the various heroes and villains.
  • Weird Crossover: Sure, generations of kids and adults have loved both of these franchises, but did anyone ever consider them being brought together like this?