Quirky Town

And just wait 'til you see the townsfolk.

"This is Petalburg. The warm weather makes the locals laid-back and happy. Wow, and talk about unique personalities... Very... individualistic, to put it nicely. Or, not so nicely... Downright kooky..."

The town is small and filled with quirky, lovable characters. There is a strong sense of community. The audience is a little torn between wanting to live there, and being glad they live someplace else where not everyone knows your business.

This trope is very powerful, perhaps reflecting a desire to somehow make this place exist, even if only in fiction. The Disney Main Street is an example of the strength this trope has to force itself into something like reality.

Be careful, though, as it may have a dark secret underneath its quirky exterior.

On a smaller scale see Quirky Household. On a larger scale, see City of Weirdos. Generally free of Small Town Boredom, and anyone who says "Nothing Exciting Ever Happens Here" either has lived there long enough that the eccentricity of their neighbors seems normal to them, or is just plain lying. Might also be a Cutesy Name Town.


Examples:

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    Anime & Manga 
  • Marie & Gali has Hubble Gali, populated by deceased scientists.
  • The Stellar Six has a town made of a series of bazaars and shops, and everyone seems to not only get along extremely well, but most of the main cast have known everyone there since childhood, and everyone (for the most part) gets along.
  • In one of the Fullmetal Alchemist novels, Ed and Al arrived in a desert town named Wisteria where everything seems extremely happy and kind, and the main female character of the novel, Ruby, insists it's the greatest place ever. Unbeknownst to the brothers at first however, is that the poor of the village, at the behest of the mayor, are sold into slavery.
  • The Bunny Mountain Shopping District in Tamako Market.

    Comic Books 

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 

    Literature 
  • Bogusville in Duncan Ball's Selby series.
  • Centerburg, the setting of Robert McCloskey's Homer Price and Centerburg Tales.
  • Lancre Town in the Discworld novels. In fact, the Kingdom of Lancre is small enough that most of the villages probably count as suburbs of a single Quirky Town.
  • Remarkable of Lizzie K. Foley's Remarkable, where everyone except our heroine Jane is remarkable in some way.

    Live-Action TV 

    Music 
  • Tom Lehrer has great fun parodying this in his song "My Home Town."

    Podcasts 
  • Night Vale fits this trope to a T, just with a lot more death and existential horror.

    Radio 

    Theater 
  • River City, Iowa in The Music Man.
  • Mapleton, Ohio in several plays by Moss Hart.
  • An unnamed Connecticut town in Ah, Wilderness! by Eugene O'Neill.
  • Richard O'Brien was inspired to write The Rocky Horror Show by his experiences living in Hamilton and Tauranga, New Zealand, during the 1950s.

    Video Games 
  • Half the fun of Animal Crossing is letting you actually live in a Quirky Town.
  • Just try to name a town in Earthbound that's not this. Go on, we'll be waiting.
    • Well, except the overpriced tourist town of Summers.
      • And Fourside, the big city.
      • And Moonside, the other big city.
    • Saturn Valley totally counts, though.
  • Mother 3 has Tazmily Village, which is arguably a Deconstruction. It's a Quirky Town because it's cut off from all other civilization. When outsiders start showing up, it quickly becomes less quirky and a lot less idyllic.
  • Greenvale in Deadly Premonition. Some of the townsfolk are downright goofy, which just adds to the Mood Whiplash regarding the horrific murders you investigate.
  • Falderal from King's Quest VII: The Princeless Bride. The china shop is run by a bull, the snake oil salesman literally has scales, and Archduke Fifi le Yip Yap is Mister Muffykins in Louis XIV attire. Be sure to take the Faux shop with a grain of salt.
  • Harvest Moon. The game is all about knowing people of the town and living there.
  • Basically every small village you come across in Professor Layton and their puzzle loving inhabitants. St. Mystere in the first game and Folsense in the second.
    • Though the idyllic little villages are far from it. By the end of the game, you find St. Mystere's residents are all robots and Folsense is a product of hallucinogenic gas!
  • Thamasa in Final Fantasy VI.
  • The Sims 2 has Strangetown, a town whose residents include aliens, a mad scientist couple, a man pregnant by aliens, and a serial killer
    • The Sims 3 Supernatural has Moonlight Falls, a town consisting of witches, fairies, werewolves, and vampires

    Web Comics 
  • Generictown in The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob!
  • City of Reality, full stop. For starters, their mayor is a bunny rabbit (actually, what looks like a living sock puppet of a bunny rabbit, and that's not just an art style!). Hawk even goes to great lengths in order to test how close it is to being a Town with a Dark Secret, thinking that secret is pent-up rage.
  • Life Sketch takes place in Hannah, Montana, where vampires, zombies and dragons are commonplace and nobody seems to bat an eye when people go out in public in full cosplay regalia.
  • Zoophobia

    Western Animation 
  • Calling South Park quirky is an understatement.
  • Hey Arnold!'s Brooklyn-inspired neighborhood, which is (among other things) known for throwing tomatoes at the British during the Revolutionary War. Aren't you jealous?
  • Mission Hill, even though it's a neighborhood of a large city.
  • The Simpsons's Springfield.
  • Bluffington from Doug.
  • Arthur has Elwood City, which is only slightly quirky.
  • Ponyville from My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic. The first impression asocial city-girl Twilight Sparkle gets is "All the ponies in this town are crazy!"
  • Ned's Newt: Friendly Falls, the show's setting. That said, friendly as they might be, the inhabitants also tend to be a tad kooky.
  • Dillydale in The Mr. Men Show is as quirky as they come.
  • The titular town in Gravity Falls is as quirky as they come, and doubles as a Town with a Dark Secret. Sometimes it seems like the various monsters surrounding the town are more sane than the humans.
    • There's s a reason why the town is so weird; The Society of the Blind Eye has been using Laser-Guided Amnesia so much that most of the people are brain-damaged.

    Real Life 
  • Cassadega, Florida.
  • Seaside, Florida. (The Truman Show was filmed there.)
  • Hell, Florida itself is often stereotyped as America's Quirky State.
  • Ditto for Vermont, often seen by those on the East Coast as Portlandia stretched over a whole state.
  • College towns in the United States. Other countries tend not to have these, as their universities were built in major cities.
  • Salem, Massachusetts: Where there are more occult shops and people walking around in robes than Diagon Alley.
  • Southport, Merseyside, United Kingdom: Pretty much this Up to Eleven - and this was lampshaded by a local newspaper, and the subject of a Take That by a Mancunian newspaper.
  • Residents of Austin, Texas, have made "Keep Austin Weird" their motto. While as a state capital it hardly qualifies as a "town", it should be noted that Austin is home to the University of Texas's main campus.
  • Eureka Springs, Arkansas, is definitely a quirky place. Victorian aesthetics, highly popular with artists, Pagans, and LGBT individuals. Its aerial map is a spider trail that loops wildly, but in spite of this, has almost no traffic lights. It also boasts the World's Largest Tuned Musical Windchime.
  • Lawrence, Kansas. Not only is it a University town, but it also has a long history of oddball culture. It is not uncommon to see all walks of life represented on the street corners of Massachusetts Street, (Mass Street to locals). Mentions of its colorful history abound, whether it is the hotel that has been shot at with a cannon and burned down twice, or Quantrill's Raid, or the long standing fueds with many other towns (Columbia Mo, Osceola Mo which is so extreme that the citizens of Osceola have said that they refuse to capitalize the name of the town or state, anywhere in Nebraska, or Manhattan, Kansas), or the atmosphere that in general makes this kinda like a real life Twin Peaks.