Puni Plush


An art style alternative to the tall, skinny design that is typical for Bishoujo Series. Puni Plush avoids straight lines, emphasizing a character's curves, especially the face and hips, that can give to the cast an overall short, young look. Most common in Romantic Comedies or Slice of Life anime and manga, but sometimes used in less obvious ways. Shows with prominent Moe content often use this art style as well. Often leads to Artistic Age of the "looks younger" variety.

Take this trope to its extreme and you get Super-Deformed. Contrast Noodle People. See also Thick-Line Animation; both styles are not complete opposites by definition, but Puni Plush favors soft, thin lines while the latter tend to emphasize angles and points— but there's no rule that says that something can't have bold lines and a rounded design. Not to be confused with the species from Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door.


    open/close all folders 

    Anime and Manga 

    Comic Books 
  • Taral Wayne's art style is a western, anime (and Cats Don't Dance) influenced, version of this.
  • As observed with Scott Pilgrim, Bryan Lee O'Malley's style straddles the line between this and Thick-Line Animation: while the art style doesn't look light in the slightest, very few characters are drawn with sharp lines and angles, and teenagers and young adults tend to look at least like pre-teens.

     Live Action TV 
  • The Korean soap opera I Love You featured as its protagonist a struggling cartoonist who drew his friends and family members in this style, which led to his successful I Love You serialized manga.

    Video Games 
  • While Akira Toriyama may have moved away from this style in his print and animated works, it's still quite evident in the game series with his character designs, such as Blue Dragon and Dragon Quest.
  • Battle Arena Nitoshinden, featuring certain fighters from the main franchise (and a few exclusive to this game) as kids.
  • Similarly, Virtua Fighter Kids, an SD-ified version of VF 2.
  • Most of the heroes of the EarthBound series are 12 to 13 years old, but it's very hard to notice. There's a reason why the likes of Ness and Lucas may be classified as adorable children. (Lucas's woobiness doesn't quite help either.) The American version of the figurines has them aged up. This is especially visible on the Ness figurine (Super Smash Bros. uses the original Japanese version world-wide)
  • Yggdra Union poses an interesting example in that even the items get some puni. Perhaps not surprisingly, the game (and the entire Dept. Heaven series, since its release) was art-directed by the creator of GA and Kuro above; Kiyudzuki is famous for her puni-moe characters (though she doesn't always draw this way).
  • Early Harvest Moon games had art like this. It's mostly been dropped since Island of Happiness in favor of Bishōnen and Bishojo. If you didn't know any better, you'd think the protagonists were preteens at most. Yet, they're supposed to be in their 20s and up. The hints drop when you can drink beer and wine and are expected to get married. It's especially jarring in games like Harvest Moon 64 and Magical Melody.
    • A similar problem occurs in Animal Crossing. The player doesn't even look pubescent but can move out, drink coffee, pay taxes, and is heavily implied to be an adult. Averted in New Leaf, where everyone more resembles Noodle People, but due to their face stays the saame as ever, so to some this isn't totally a good thing.
  • Etrian Odyssey has this too. Quite jarring given the scenario, but very charming too.
  • Eternal Sonata
  • Most of the character art in the Panel de Pon games (at least the ones that have characters) is done in this style. It's toned down for the 2-Player and Vs. mode portraits, though.
  • Final Fantasy IX. Exceptions seem to be limited to named characters (civilians exhibit this on a massive scale, even the furry ones.)
  • Ontamarama
  • All Touhou characters, at least in the official art. Fanart depictions vary considerably.
  • Senran Kagura uses a very curvy puni plush art style, which fits nicely for the Slice of Life parts of the story... and creates some interesting Art-Style Dissonance during the dramatic parts.
  • Her Tears Were My Light and most of NomnomNami's works

    Western Animation 
  • The Princess and the Frog was deliberately given a rounded style, more reminiscent of older Disney movies, such as Lady And The Tramp and 101 Dalmations. The directors believed those movies were the pinnacle of Disney's style.
  • Lilo & Stitch. The look of the film, and its subsequent spin-off installments, are reflective of the director's personal style. This makes the movie very unique; almost no straight lines are used, and even pointed objects are dull. This also tend to seep into other movies he has storyboarded/directed, such as The Croods, and Beauty and the Beast.
  • Magi-Nation, at least in its original incarnation. Even the fierce Hyrens were kind of cute and chubby.
  • Fionna from Adventure Time has a lot more curves than the typical Noodle People in that show. Her designer says she's meant to look 'chubby cute.' Considering she's the Distaff Counterpart of Finn, it makes sense. He's kind of a chunky kid (?) and women hold their weight in different places.
  • Class of 3000 use a style that favors curves above straight lines—especially noticeable in the character design, as everybody looks super-rounded.
  • All the child characters in the Madeline Animated Adaptation.
  • The ChalkZone episodes done by Sunwoo Entertainment (which animated episodes of seasons two and three) gave Rudy and Penny a more rounded look by making their limbs a little wider than usual and overall gave the two a more softer, rounder look (which was a sharp contrast to the first season's Noodle People look to the two that Galaxy Digimation gave them). While there are a few fans who loved Sunwoo's episodes due to them managing to make Rudy and Penny even cuter with the more puni plush art style, they also qualify as Off-Model, as none of the other studios utilized this look.