What happens when Not Allowed to Grow Up
affects an entire setting
. This is where an entire area, often an Adventure Town
, is entirely populated and governed by children.
They might actually be children, or they might actually be Really 700 Years Old
, but they will always at least look
like little kids.
The trope name, which comes from the name of the Magical Land
in J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan
, is something of a misnomer, since being in Neverland didn't actually stop anyone from growing older, though it works that way in many adaptations.
to Lady Land
, where most of the inhabitants are adults, just monogender.
Not to be confused with the game developer Neverland
- In The Santa Clause, aside from Santa/Scott himself the North Pole is like this. The elves are ancient beings but the eldest of them looks no older than fifteen or sixteen tops and most of the others look much younger.
- The Reality Show Kid Nation was based off this trope.
- The Star Trek episode "Miri" contains a fairly dark example: A planet of long-lived, unaging children who sicken and die upon reaching long-delayed adolescence.
- The Stargate Atlantis episode "Childhood's End" features a set of villages populated entirely by children (and young adults) because they commit ritual suicide upon turning 24. This is revealed to be the result of an Ancient setting up a forcefield on the planet to protect them from the Wraith, but because the shield was only so big they turned to Population Control.
- Naturally, SyFy's miniseries Neverland, which serves as an Origin Story for Peter Pan, and "explains" that no one ages in Neverland because it's on a planet in the center of the universe, so time stands still for anyone there.
- The Kokiri Forest area in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.
- Interestingly, it's never revealed whether the reason is that the Kokiri themselves are immortal, if it comes from all the fairies that congregate there, or if it's because of the mysterious protection of the Deku Tree (the implication in the sequel Wind Waker is that the Kokiri might just be its humanoid children, with a lifespan comparable to its own)
- Youngtown in MOTHER, due to Alien Abduction of all of the adults.
- Little Lamplight in Fallout 3 has been populated entirely by children for nearly two hundred years. It's not clear how they replenish their population, but citizens are banished to Big Town on their eighteenth birthdays.
- Tales of the Questor features this with the elves - due to a goof by a now-reviled elven king (who wanted his people to be able not to die of old age and apparently went to a Literal Genie for his wish) elves are perpetually young - but not long-lived. They only live to about twenty or so, and then die of 'old age'. The result is that most of the elven territories are inhabited by half-wild children. To make things even worse, it's implied that, as a result, their civilization has gone from being able to match the humans or even the Sidhe to something out of Lord of the Flies. Half-elves, although longer-lived, still have much briefer lifespans than humans or Raccoonan - they only get anywhere from ten to twenty years more. There is allegedly an artifact out there somewhere that can fix the problem, but it's missing so it looks like our hero Quentyn has another item to keep an eye out for in his grand quest.