Manga / Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid

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Chu-chu yeah!

Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid (Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon 小林さんちのメイドラゴン) is a Slice of Life Urban Fantasy manga by Cool-Kyou Shinsha.

Kobayashi was just a hard-working, otaku software programmer living in Tokyo until one night she got drunk. In her drunken stupor, she climbed a mountain, came across a wounded dragon named Tohru, and pulled a giant, divine sword out of her, saving her life. Before going home, Kobayashi told Tohru she could come live with her if she wanted. When she wakes up the next day, remembering nothing, she rushes off to work and runs into Tohru outside her apartment door. Having heard Kobayashi's drunken rants about maids, Tohru magically transforms into a mostly-human maid and devotes her life to being Kobayashi's maid. Knowing nothing about maids or human society, of course.

In 2016, it was licensed by Seven Seas Entertainment and began release in North America in October. Shortly thereafter, a Spin-Off titled Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid: Kanna's Daily Life began in December 2016, which is also licensed by Seven Seas. Another Spin-Off titled Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid: Elma's OL Diary began in August 2017.

A 13-episode anime adaptation produced by Kyoto Animation ran during the Winter 2017 Anime season. It was directed by Yasuhiro Takemoto, with Yuka Yamada serving as series composer, Miku Kadowaki serving as character designer, and Nobuaki Maruki serving as chief animation director.

It is available for worldwide streaming on Crunchyroll with subtitles, and with an English Dub on Funimation here.

This work contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Actually Pretty Funny: Kobayashi asks Tohru and Kanna to play 'on her level.'
    Tohru: My back!! My back!!
    Kanna: I'm so tired I'm gonna die.
    Kobayashi: That's just mean. It totally is me, though.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: All of the female dragons were given Multicolored Hair in the anime.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The anime adds many things.
    • Episode 1 adds a scene to explain how Tohru knows what maids are supposed to look like. Long story short, she saw two girls advertising a maid cafe during her flight to Kobayashi's house.
    • Episode 3 kicks off with Kobayashi deciding to move house because there's not enough room for her, Tohru and Kanna.
    • Episode 4 sees the Kobayashi household buying school supplies for Kanna.
    • Episode 6 concludes with a look at Makoto and Fafnir's home life. Also, we actually get to see Kobayashi's and Georgie's conversation involving maids.
    • In Episode 7, the first half's Beach Episode features much more than the manga. Lucoa and Shouta also come with the group, and a sunblock-applying session, brief swimming race, watermelon smashing game, and Lucoa's swimsuit antics are all added.
    • The first half of Episode 9 shows Kobayashi working extra hours so she can get the day off to go to the sports festival at Kanna's school (it was Parents' Day in the manga). The second half is original to the anime, showing the sports festival itself.
    • Episode 10 is an anime original, featuring the cast putting on their own take on The Little Match Girl for an old folks' home at Christmas.
    • Episode 11 features an extended version of chapter 48 when everyone goes to a festival for New Year's. It also has several anime original segments of Kobayashi, Tohru, and Kanna staying under a kotatsu.
    • Episode 12 begins with an extended version of chapter 12, featuring Tohru doing the housework and shopping before making omurice.
    • Episode 13 is based off of chapters 19 & 20, except Tohru's father takes her home, she escapes to find Kobayashi, and he comes to take her back again. It ends with the Kobayashi household on a visit to Kobayashi's family home.
  • Adaptation Explanation Extrication: In the manga, Tohru used magic to make the necessary paperwork for Kanna to go to school. The anime cut out this scene, instead opting for a sequence of the two of them and Kobayashi going out to buy school supplies, with Fafnir and Tohru's house-hunting in the next episode explaining how dragons deal with paperwork.
  • Adaptation-Induced Plot Hole: Due to the chapters being adapted out of order, Lucoa and Fafnir checking up on Tohru during the dodgeball chapter loses most of its meaning. In the manga, it happened right after the whole debacle with Tohru's father, but it happened beforehand in the anime.
  • Adaptational Modesty:
    • In the anime, (episode 3), the Imagine Spot scene where Kanna and Tohru licked each other clean was pixellated out, in the manga (chapter 11), it wasn't (even though genitals and nipples weren't shown).
    • In the anime, Kanna and Tohru had their clothes on when they meditated to gain (even more) superpowers (episode 5), in the manga (chapter 18), they hadn't (again, their nipples and genitals were covered by hair).
  • Alien Lunch: Tohru tries to serve Kobayashi some exotic meals. Her attempts to serve her own tail are also a Running Gag.
  • Alien Non-Interference Clause: Dragons aren't supposed to interfere on Earth.
  • All Myths Are True: At the very least, Aztec, Norse, Japanese, Ainu, Basque, and Christian mythology are true. (Tohru's not a big fan of Jesus's dad.)
  • Always in Class One: Averted in the anime (the manga never specifies what class they're in). Kanna and Saikawa are in class 3-2 and Shouta is in Class 5-3.
  • Amusement Park: Kobayashi, Tohru, and Kanna go to one in chapter 50 (Ilulu chose to stay home because she was really tired).
  • Asshole Victim: Kobayashi's boss, who makes overbearing demands on her and criticizes her for trivial things, gets tripped by an invisible Tohru who was visiting her office. Not only does his repeated falls cause him embarrassment, he's later fired for abusing his authority.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: The Bandit does this to Tohru by accident when she asks her what the freedom of being a dragon is like. Tohru had never considered herself free and had never even wondered what she would do if she was.
  • Armor-Piercing Response: Kobayashi gives one to Elma when she call her distracting. Pointing out that she destroyed her apartment with her entrance and should learn the rules of a world before trying to protect it.
  • Beach Episode: Kobayashi, Tohru and Kanna visit the beach in Chapter 16/the first half of Episode 7. Shouta and Lucoa join them in the anime.
  • Bee Afraid: In the bear-themed part of the 2nd blu-ray short, Kanna brings a bee hive with her for the honey, and the bees proceed to attack Kobayashi.
  • Black Blood: Downplayed. The blood from the wound that Tohru had when she first met Kobayashi was black, but the blood sent flying when Kobayashi pulled out the sword was dark red. Truth in Television, as blood turns a green-black color when it dries, implying that Tohru was bearing that injury for a while.
  • Bland-Name Product: In the anime, Kobayashi has a checkerboard patterned game system that's labeled as "180". Another one of her systems is labeled "GS5"
  • Bleached Underpants: Lucoa's relationship with Shouta reads exactly like the start of the author's hentai works (big breasted monster girl putting the moves on a shy little boy), just cutting off before anything truly NSFW happens.
  • Bowdlerise: Tohru's enmity towards the Abrahamic God was considerably toned down in the anime, presumably so less people in the US object to it.
  • Call-Back:
    • When Kanna goes to the park with Saikawa in the manga, she refers to the seesaw as a catapult, the same way that Tohru did on their first day together after Kanna moved in with Kobayashi. In the anime, after Kobayashi explains seesaws are actually something kids play on, the dragons get the idea that you use it by having someone jumping up and down on each end, sending the person on the other end flying, so when Kanna goes to the park with Saikawa, she instead refers to the seesaw as "the thing you fly with".
    • While Tohru is teaching Kanna about how the human world works in episode 2, they see a guy talking on a cellphone and saying "that's wicked" over and over again. Tohru says that they're magic words to get you through most conversations. Kanna repeats this every time one of her classmates tries to show her something in episode 4.
    • In episode 12, Tohru does the same cleaning song that she did in episode 3.
    • In chapter 43, Tohru is asked to join a neighborhood watch committee because of her actions stopping the purse snatcher back in chapter 5.
  • Canon Immigrant: Chapter 55 uses the 5 symbol scene transitions seen in the anime.
  • Cat Smile: Tohru sports one in episode 5 while peeking in on Kobayashi at her workplace.
  • The Cameo: Several from other Cool-kyou Shinsha works.
    • Miki is shown to own a crepe stand in chapter 7. He's also in Tohru's cookbook in chapter 10.
    • A photo of Haru appears on the newspaper that Kobayashi was reading in chapter 13. Kobayashi also happens to work for a company owned by her family. Haru and Aki would later both be mentioned (indirectly) by Takiya in chapter 55.
    • The Horiuchi Butchery from RaButa appears in chapter 25. Tohru also mentioned that she learned about Christmas from Mr Horiuchi (either Harundo or his father).
    • After her first day of school, Kanna got a keychain of Frau Rabbit (from the oneshot of the same name) from Kobayashi. The actual Frau Rabbit also shows up at Comiket.
    • Cool-kyou Shinsha's hentai Author Avatar can also be seen standing right behind Frau Rabbit at Comiket.
    • Houka from Metsuko ni Yoroshiku can be seen as a member of the "Dragon Busters" in chapter 43, wielding her signature steel pipe.
  • Censored for Comedy:
    • Fafnir's "Curse Anthology", his attempt at making a manga, is completely pixelated to the viewers. Tohru points out that he put actual instructions of real curses, including how to kill people. She also mentioned that selling it at 1000 yen is quite a bargain.
    • Tohru's Christmas present for Kobayashi was some weird and still living thing from her world she'd have to grind up and apply to her back to get rid of her back pain.
    • Some of the leftover ingredients from Tohru's omurice are still wriggling by the time Kobayashi gets back home.
  • Christmas Episode:
    • Chapter 8 in the manga. It was also when Fafnir and Lucoa were formally introduced.
    • The anime did its own with episode 10, featuring the cast putting on a play for an old folks' home.
  • Color-Coded Characters: Downplayed since the characters barely wear their associated colors. The dragons also have patterns to go along with it in the opening/ending.
    • Kobayashi: Green
    • Tohru: Red plaid
    • Kanna: Pink polka dots
    • Lucoa: Purple horizontal bars
    • Elma: Blue vertical bars
    • Fafnir: Bluish purple with an elaborate paisley pattern.
  • Color Failure:
    • Kobayashi when she sees Tohru in her dragon form the first time after sobering up.
    • Kobayashi and Takiya when they see Fafnir in his monstrous humanoid form for the first time (episode #3).
    • Fafnir walks away from Comiket 90 completely dejected and devoid of color, because he wasn't able to sell even one copy of his manga. It happens again when no-one wants to buy the sequel at Comiket 91.
  • Cooking Duel: In chapter 23, Kanna wanting a bentou lunch for her school picnic causes Kobayashi and Tohru to square off over who's the better cook between them in order to decide who makes said lunch.
  • Cool Code of Source: Occasional shots of Kobayashi's computer in the anime reveal that she codes in Python.
  • Cover-Blowing Superpower: Kanna was able to track down Tohru after she used a Wave Motion Gun to clear some rain clouds and used her super strength and speed to catch a purse snatcher.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Tohru and her friends play a game of dodgeball against some people who were bullying Kanna's friend Saikawa in chapter 21. Kobayashi's narration even points out how overkill it was to have 4 superpowered dragons take on a group of ordinary, untrained humans.
  • Cut-and-Paste Translation: In the dub, when Fafnir introduced himself to Kobayashi and the others, he expressed his total disdain for the human world and asked to be killed to spare him the pain of being there. In the Japanese original and the manga, he didn't wish to meet his end, but wished to end the world.
  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: A double whammy. Not only do the various dragons have issues understanding humans due to being dragons, but all their information on humans up till this point is based off an entirely different culture whose values are nearly as alien to modern Japan as they are to the dragons.
  • Derailed Fairy Tale: Episode 10's version of The Little Match Girl, thanks to the cast deciding to make the story more interesting, involves two Magical Girls, one of whom's the old man from the Japanese Kasajizo folktale, who set a mansion on fire, then team up with Kuranosuke Oishi to fight Kouzuke-no-suke Kira, who turns out to be a dragon.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: At the beginning of episode 5, Tohru blasts a couple of birds that were pulling on the laundry she hung out to dry. Said blast presumably destroys the birds, along with the clothing, and the balcony, though it seems she fixes it after the opening credits are done.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: During the fifth grade cavalry battle on sports day, Shouta's team was able to defeat the other classes single-handed because they were too distracted by Lucoa cheering for him. Kobayashi gets a dose of this too in Chapter 37 after Ilulu switches her genitals, constantly struggling against lust for Tohru.
  • Do You Want to Copulate?:
    • Tohru almost immediately professes her love for Kobayashi, then clarifies (thus defying Love You and Everybody) with "I mean sexually!"
    • After Kanna and Saikawa's kiss gets interrupted, Kanna mentions in the manga omake "I wanted to *** her." The last two words were muted in the anime.note  The Funimation dub of this scene has most of Kanna's dialogue muted save for the last two words, "dragon style".
    • When asked what she wants to do following her Heel–Face Turn, Ilulu's response is "I wanna breed with Kobayashi."
  • Dodgeball Is Hell: Especially when the players are dragons with Super Strength.
  • Dramatic Irony:
    • During a flashback chapter, Tohru tells a bandit that she'd never let a human ride on her back. In the present day, she often complains about how Kobayashi refuses to ride her to work.
    • After Tohru showed up in retaliation for him hurting Kobayashi, Clemene tried calling Elma for help. It's far more likely that - if Elma had shown up - she might have struck an Enemy Mine situation with Tohru and been conflicted instead due to her own relationship with Kobayashi.
  • Eyes Are Mental: The dragons keep their reptilian pupils when they take on human form, though the distribution of color on the iris changes (instead of a darker color outlining the pupil it becomes a gradient from top to bottom). Lucoa is an exception to the rule, though that's probably because she was originally a goddess.
  • Fake Wizardry: Played for Laughs when Tohru and Kanna mistake a spoon bending illusion on the TV for actual magic. They spend the rest of the chapter trying to learn how to do it (with a stereotypical martial arts training montage). It's not that it's more powerful than their own magic (Tohru is practically a full blown Reality Warper), but their pride as dragons doesn't let them accept that humans can do something that they can't.
  • False Camera Effects: From the OP: We watch a countdown featuring each of the dragons, followed by false film damage such as vertical lines and dirt on the projector lens. As if we were watching a documentary rather than an anime!
  • Fantastic Fruits and Vegetables:
    • During the cooking contest with Kobayashi, Tohru brings back something from her world that looks fruit-like, but which has teeth and bites like an animal.
    • Tohru goes back to her dimension to get some ingredients for an omurice meal Kobayashi asked for earlier. Some of the items she retrieves include fruits from that region.
  • Fantastic Racism:
    • Tohru's less than stellar view of humans (Kobayashi being the exception, of course) comes up multiple times, but it slowly dies down as she adjusts to living on Earth. Other dragons also show signs of this, but it only really gets focus in Ilulu's character arc.
    • Interestingly, Lucoa never shows any signs of racism (most likely due to the fact that she has spent the most time directly interacting with humans and advancing their development).
  • Fantastic Romance: Every dragon/human relationship is this by default.
  • "Fantastic Voyage" Plot: Takiya suggests that Tohru could do this to cure Kobayashi's fever in chapter 42. Tohru shoots down the idea, saying that Kobayashi's body wouldn't be able to handle it.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: The "Other World" that the dragons hail from is a Medieval European Fantasy world with aspects of various mythologies and folklores.
  • Fish out of Water:
    • Tohru has no idea how to properly interact with humans. Kanna even less so. Although they get better as time goes on.
    • Then there's Elma, who's utterly at a loss when it comes to figuring out office work.
  • Flower Motif: Episode 13 is centered around one. First it's discussed when Saikawa gives Kanna a Shepherd's Pursenote  after finding out that it means "I offer you my all". After Tohru is abducted by her father, the camera shows the flower many times. It is finally echoed by Tohru after the Final Battle, where she tells Kobayashi she can have her all.
  • Flowers of Romance: Saikawa gives Kanna a Shepherd's Purse in episode 13 after finding out that it means "I offer you my all".
  • Food as Bribe: Kobayashi convinces Elma to help Tohru fight against Ilulu by offering her sweets.
  • For Halloween, I Am Going as Myself: Several of the cosplayers at Comiket are actually creatures from Tohru's world.
  • Foreign Cuss Word: Tohru calls Takiya, Kobayashi's work colleague and target of her hate for purportedly trying to seduce Kobayashi (only in Tohru's love-addled mind), "stultus", which is Latin for foolish, stupid and so on.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: The butterfly seen in episode 2 is an owl butterfly, which would place the field somewhere in Central or South America.
  • Functional Magic: Human style magic is implied to work this way, since Kobayashi ends up drawing a comparison between the introductory sheet Tohru gave her and her programming at work.
  • Funny Background Event: Every crowd shot with Lucoa in episode 9 features very happy men and annoyed women.
  • Gainaxing:
    • Every girl with a large bust in the anime.
    • The opening involves a scene where 3 Lucoas bounce their chests like puppies on crack.
  • Go Through Me: Kobayashi does this for Ilulu when she's attacked by Clemene. Despite the rule that dragons are not supposed to harm people on Earth, Clemene just swats her aside. It does solidify Ilulu's Heel–Face Turn though, leading her to do the same thing for Kobayashi immediately after. It still doesn't make Clemene hesitate though. Instead, his thanking the gods for his good luck ends up summoning a very angry Tohru, who proceeds to beat him within an inch of his life for hurting Kobayashi.
  • Going Native: None of the dragons seem to have any intention of returning to their world, and adapt very well to life on Earth. It even gets discussed in chapter 15/episode 5.
  • Gratuitous Japanese: When Tohru saw a photo album with photos of Kobayashi as a little child, she squealed "Chibi Kobayashi!!" in the dub and "Miss Kobayashi's so adorable!!" in the Japanese original.
  • Happiness in Slavery: Discussed in chapter 28 when Tohru met a bandit who dreamed of being a maid. Being a dragon, Tohru had a hard time understanding why anyone would willingly submit themselves to another, especially someone who had just gained their freedom.
    Tohru: You are enslaving yourself, are you not?
    Bandit: But, it's by my own choice.
  • Healing Factor: In the first chapter, Tohru serves Kobayashi a grilled piece of her tail, then grows it back. In chapter 12, she's apparently ready to grill her tail for dinner. In chapter 26, she uses her tail for food again, serving Kobayashi and Kanna tail-meat sandwiches. Kobayashi also mentions that most of Ilulu's external wounds had healed by the time she rescued her from Clemene.
  • Hexagonal Speech Balloon: The anime uses ones that are personalized with the characters' respective draconian features (wings for Tohru, horns and tail for Kanna, etc.)
  • Hide Your Otherness: Unlike the other dragons, Elma and Kanna both hide their horns when they're in public. The others just pass it off as cosplay, but Elma works in an office and Kanna attends school (two places where cosplay wouldn't be allowed).
  • Horned Humanoid: All of the dragons have access to a Little Bit Beastly form, though male dragons tend to prefer their full human or full dragon forms.
  • Hot Springs Episode: The main cast visit a hot springs town in chapter 33.
  • Human Sacrifice:
    • While Order-class dragons helped people grow stronger and become better, Elma reveals they typically required humans to sacrifice themselves to help others in their group.
    • Tohru actually complained about the cliche of young maidens always being the sacrifices back when she first met Kobayashi.
      Tohru: Yesh!! Don't think that all dragons are lolicons who ask for little girl sacrifices!! Princess moe my ass!!
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming:
    • Every manga chapter is titled "[Character] and [Subject of Chapter]". Up until chapter 38, the character in the title was always one of the dragons, even if the main focus was on one of the humans.
    • The anime has conventional titles that describe the overarching theme of the episode, followed by a snarky comment in parenthesis.
  • Inconsistent Dub: Subtitle example. In the preview for episode 10, Nae introduces herself as "Josie" rather than "Georgie".
  • Interspecies Romance: Tohru and Kanna are both shown to be in love with a human (plus Lucoa attempting to seduce Shouta for room and board), but only Kanna's feelings for Saikawa are shown to be mutual.
  • Knight Templar: Clemene, who is willing to kill innocent bystanders and flat out ignore the Alien Non-Interference Clause in the name of peace and harmony.
  • Knockback Slide: Tohru does this when she catches Fafnir's ball.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: In episode 1, Kobayashi tells Tohru "You can't wear the same clothes like you're in some anime."
  • Let's Meet the Meat: Tohru grills her own tail to feed to Kobayashi, though it helps that she can grow it back.
  • Lost in Translation: Those who have also read Ojojojo know Kobayashi's employer is owned by Haru Jigoumeguri's family. However, Jigoumeguri doesn't look or sound like a surname, so Seven Seas Entertainment translates it into "Hell Tours Ltd.," omitting The Verse implications.
  • Marshmallow Hell: Poor Shouta ends up receiving this from Lucoa's Gag Boobs while sharing a bed in episode 8. The first two times cause Shouta to dream that he's being crushed by a giant ball, then suffocated by a bear's paw. The third time has him dream about fighting a sumo wrestler, indirectly feeling up Lucoa.
  • Masquerade: Various magical beings from Tohru's original world find refuge and conceal themselves as normal denizens on Earth, to escape their harsh Crapsack World. To them Earth's relative stability and lack of magical threats is a virtual paradise.
  • Mayfly–December Romance:
    • Fafnir brings this up when Tohru says she has no plans to return to their world. She doesn't have any problem with it.
      Tohru: If I treasure the time I spend here. I would indeed feel an equal amount of sadness. But, I don't think I will ever call that feeling of sadness "regret".
    • Kanna and Saikawa are also in love, but since they're both in elementary school this problem isn't actually brought up.
  • Meaningful Echo: When Kobayashi tries to help Ilulu overcome her Tragic Bigotry towards humans in chapter 38, Ilulu says "You're trying to trick me." When all is said and done at the end of the chapter, Ilulu tearfully hugs Kobayashi and asks "Can you trick me?"
  • Medieval European Fantasy: The universe the dragons come from is indicated to be like this.
  • Meditating Under a Waterfall: Played for Laughs. Tohru and Kanna do this to learn how to bend spoons.
  • Meido: Obviously, there's Tohru herself, but maids are treated as incredibly Serious Business by the adult humans. Kobayashi, Makoto, and Saikawa's sister are all massive maid otakus (the latter to the point that she pretends to be one when guests come over); and the bandit that Tohru once met equated becoming a maid with freedom.
  • Moment Killer: While seeking refuge from Kobayashi's Meido discussion with Saikawa's sister, Tohru ends up stopping Kanna and Saikawa from kissing (and given what Kanna was thinking at the end of the chapter, she prevented a lot more than that).
  • Muggles Do It Better: Minor example. Tohru and Kanna mention that Earth's vegetables and rice are superior to what is found in there world due to some magic called "selective breeding".
  • Multicolored Hair: Tohru, Kanna, Lucoa and Elma in the anime, all of whom have their hair shade from one color to another.
  • Mundane Made Awesome:
    • In Chapter 21, after the Curb-Stomp Battle, the dragons decide to have a match between themselves. Their vast superhuman abilities turn the relatively modest sport of dodgeball into what amounts to an epic battle with massive amounts of property destruction... which gets fixed in a jiffy (and bystanders have their memories erased) through magic afterwards.
    • In Episode 2, Tohru and Kanna use the seesaw to toss each other sky high after Kobayashi tries explaining its correct usage to them.
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: Parodied.
    • Fafnir's first go to solution for any problem from cleaning to shopping to children's games is always "Kill them. Kill them all."
    • Tohru will often suggest killing any human she finds in any way annoying before getting more used to living on Earth.
    • After learning that Tohru is not returning back to the "dragon world" due to her being in love with Kobayashi, Kanna responds by trying to kill Kobayashi, but lacks the mana to do any real damage to her.
  • Mysterious Animal Senses: The first chapter of Kanna's Daily Life revealed that the pet rabbit for Kanna's elementary school class can sense her draconic nature and is terrified of her as a result.
  • Mythology Gag: The Playboy Bunny outfit that Tohru wore during the second DVD special was a simplified version of the one she wore on the cover of chapter 18.
  • New Year Has Come: Episode 11 covers all the basics: making mochi, shrine and festival visits in kimonos, watching the first sunrise, hatsuyume, hanging out under the kotatsu for days at a time eating oranges, New Year's cards, giving money to children, and complaining about all the anime being on break.
  • Nipple and Dimed:
    • During the Hot Springs Episode in chapter #33, Lucoa and Tohru are seen completely topless for once, but the other girls are not. The guys on the other hand have Barbie Doll Anatomy.
    • When Tooru undresses a sick Kobayashi, the nipples of her non-existing breasts are shown.
  • One-Sided Arm-Wrestling: Chapter 40 features several examples during an arm wrestling tournament. Takiya gets his wrist snapped like a twig by Ilulu, Kanna is unable to even budge Lucoa's arm despite using both hands, and the only reason Tohru didn't lose to Lucoa in the finals is because she bribed Shouta to distract her.
  • Order Versus Chaos: Dragon society is divided into three factions: those who seek to keep the world in order, those who seek destruction and power, and those who seek neither. Tohru and Ilulu are part of the chaos faction. Elma is part of the order faction. Lucoa is unaligned.
  • Otaku: Several of the characters are otaku for maids.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: Due to the Fantasy Kitchen Sink nature of Cool-kyou Shinsha's verse, all of the dragons have vastly different powers and appearances. The only real consistencies seem to be their ability to fly and use magic (generally to turn into human form). It's also important to note that Tohru's fight with the gods and Quetzalcoatl's backstory demonstrates that dragons are the level of power below godhood in the series.
  • Parents as People: Kobayashi's parents were like this while she was growing up, and she ends up as one when she becomes Kanna's Parental Substitute.
    Kobayashi: Parents' day... my parents never came. They were busy with work. It was to support the family, and I understood that.
  • Perception Filter: Dragons are able to prevent their presence from being perceived by humans' senses through "cognitive inhibition"; it's implied to be some kind of magic that all dragons are capable of, though apparently they have to train themselves in its use (Kanna can't use it yet, for example).
  • Perpetual Smiler: Shouta's father is always smiling. Always.
  • Portmanteau: Kobayashi occasionally calls Tohru a "chorogon" (from choroinote  and dragon).
  • Portmantitle:
    • The "Maid Dragon" bit in the kana of the Japanese title is read "Meidoragon".
    • Taken Up to Eleven with the BD special, Kobayashi-san chi no OODragon. The OO serves as a blank, and the audience is presented with things like Bandragon, New Zealandragon, Mermaidragon, Avocadoragon, and Do-Re-Mi-Fa-So-La-Ti-Doragon.
  • Puppy Love: Kanna and Saikawa, with a dash of Mayfly–December Romance. Although, their relationship is far more adult in nature than is the standard for elementary school kids, so it dangerously borders on Schoolgirl Lesbians. Saikawa has a Squee-gasm whenever Kanna does something cute, and Kanna... well...
    Kanna: I wanted to ████ her.note 
  • Real Place Background: The anime is set in Koshigaya.
  • Reality Ensues: Lucoa's extremely skimpy swimwear gets her dragged away for overexposure twice, and in the second DVD special, her "Dragon Milk Cow" cosplay even gets her arrested for indecent exposure.
  • Relatively Flimsy Excuse:
    • Tohru and Kanna both masquerade as Kobayashi's cousins from overseas. Just like the horns, no one questions it.
    • In the anime, Shouta's classmates think Lucoa is his big sister.
  • Running Gag:
    • Kobayashi's lower back pain. In the manga this is translated (probably rightly) as butt pain.
    • Tohru trying to feed Kobayashi her tail.
    • 48th Maid Art "Insert power that has nothing to do with maids"
    • Saikawa having a Squee-gasm whenever Kanna does something cute in the anime (she only did so once in the manga).
  • Sadly Mythcharacterized: The cast includes characters derived from myth, all as shapeshifting dragons. Quetzalcoatl has a Gender Flip and Fafnir goes from a dwarf to a Bishōnen who doesn't care much about treasure. Tohru, the eponymous dragon maid, is a subversion. While her name is derived from the Japanese translation of Thor, it's actually stated that it has a different In-Universe origin.
  • Self-Serving Memory: In episode 12, Tohru elaborates her memory of Kobayashi asking her to make her omurice good into something out of shoujo anime, with Tohru as the maid heroine and Kobayashi as the handsome bifauxnen.
  • Serious Business: Meido are a very serious thing to many people in the story.
  • Shapeshifter Default Form: Played With in that the human forms the dragons normally appear in are indeed their true forms just as much as their draconic forms. It's explained as it being what their essence would look like if they were born as humans, IE a cute/beautiful form to dragons means a cute/beautiful form to humans. Basically while they can change species they have no control over what they look like.
  • Ship Tease:
    • Kobayashi and Tohru are the primary tease, but Kobayashi also gets some pretty discreet ship tease with Elma and more overt ship tease with Ilulu.
    • Though comparatively little, there is teasing between Kobayashi and Takiya. Unlike the other teases this is reciprocated on some level.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The river seen in the opening credits looks remarkably like the very polluted river in the opening of the first episode of the OVA of Bubblegum Crisis. Its a lot cleaner looking in Dragon Maid though.
    • Tohru mentions The Matrix in chapter 9.
    • Kanna was watching Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in chapter 10.
    • In chapter 11, Kobayashi compares Tohru's inability to live in one place for too long to a legendary Pokémon.
    • Tohru mentions having read Dragon Zakura in chapter 13.
    • One of the cosplayers at Comiket is dressed like Shin-chan.
    • Chapter 21 reveals Fafnir has played at least one of the Honoo no Toukyuuji Dodge Danpei games.
    • There's a reference to the Japanese Twitter meme "they had lots of sex afterwards" (link to an SFW article on a NSFW site) at the end of manga chapter #35.
    • In episode 2, Tohru is shown holding a copy of Tsuru no Ongaeshi, which is a story about a crane that takes on a human form to serve an elderly couple after they save her life. She even tells Kobayashi not to come into the kitchen while she makes dinner as a reference to the fact that the crane told the couple to never enter her room as she made cloth for them to sell.
    • In the dub, Kobayashi quips this after flicking treats for Kanna...
    • Also in the dub...
      Tohru: Fafnir does have a slight dislike for humans. We're talking about an ancient cursed dragon that has been guarding his treasure in a cave for, like, ever.
      Kobayashi: You mean "hobbit style"?
    • Again in the dub, after Kobayashi explains the concept of "magic tricks"...
      Tohru: I've heard of this before. There's a should-be-forgettable movie that talks about it. About how humans only use approximately 10% of their brain capacity.
    • Fafnir and Makoto are seen playing a Dark Souls expy during the party in Episode 3. At the end of the episode, Kanna plays something that bears a suspicious resemblance to Mario Kart.
    • In episode 6, Kanna plays the suspiciously Mario Kart-like game at Saikawa's house, and Fafnir and Makoto decide who gets to wash the dishes by playing the Spy vs. Spy video game.
    • In episode 9, when Shouta reveals what was written on his slip during the scavenger hunt portion of the sports festival, a coin grabbing sound effect from the Super Mario Bros. series plays.
    • During the "Miss Kobayashi's RPG Dragon" segment in the fourth DVD special, Tohru, Elma, Fafnir and Makoto take part in a Final Fantasy I battle.
    • In Kanna's Daily Life, Saikawa imitates Raoh's famous scene.
  • Shown Their Work: Most of the facts about the dragons are taken from actual mythology, such as Tohru's friend Herensuge being killed by an egg and the fact that Lucoa (aka Quetzalcoatl) slept with her own sister.
  • Sick Episode: In chapter 42, Tohru nurses Kobayashi who has fallen sick from a cold.
  • Sigil Spam: The silhouette of a rabbit's head shows up all over the place in the anime (representing Cool-Kyou Shinsha's Author Avatar).
  • Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: Despite being one of the earliest dragons introduced in-series, Fafnir doesn't appear on any of the manga covers (until about 6 volumes after his debut), nor does he get any character art in the anime to himself. The most he gets is a signed shikishi that comes as a bonus with volume 4 of the anime's Blu-Ray release, and even that is shared with Takiya.
  • Spoon Bending: Torhu and Kanna see someone do this on television. They try to do it themselves but with no success.
  • Stealth Pun: It's only on-screen for an instant at a time but it appears that Kobayashi specializes in the programming language Python.
  • The Stinger: Episode 12 ends with a portal from the other world opening up, setting up Episode 13.
  • The Sleepless: Dragons don't need to sleep, though they are capable of doing so. Chapter 41 actually goes into this in depth.
  • Super Not-Drowning Skills: Tohru mentions during the Beach Episode that dragons can breathe underwater, causing Kobayashi to wonder if they have gills.
  • Technically Naked Shapeshifter: The clothing that the dragons normally wear are actually their shapeshifted scales. Said clothing is still removable, as shown when Tohru tries to seduce Kobayashi in chapter 37.
  • Time Abyss: Dialogue in chapter 19 implies that dragons are capable of living for billions of years.
  • Trapped in Another World: While none of the dragons are natives of Earth, most of them have the ability to freely conjure up inter-dimensional portals. The only ones who are "trapped" on Earth are Kanna and Elma. Kanna could theoretically go back at any time with Tohru's help, but she'd just be sent back to Earth anyway because she had been banished. Elma, on the other hand, got stuck chasing after Tohru, lacks the ability to make her own portals, and isn't on the best of terms with those who can.
  • Tsundere: In Chapter 16, Tohru asks if Kobayashi is a tsundere... only for the latter to not only deadpanly deny it, but go on a rant over what a tsundere is and how modern fiction apparently misses the point of the character archetype.
    Kobayashi: No, tsunderes are people who are "tsun" most of the time, but turn "dere" when they're alone with the person they like. I don't wanna be a fundamentalist, but what I feel with tsunderes these days is that once they go "dere", they just stay like that...
  • Undead Tax Exemption: Tohru is shown using magic to make the necessary paperwork when Kanna wants to go to school.
    Kobayashi: It even has the watermark...
  • Valentine's Day Episodes:
    • Chapter 10, which involves a chocolate made by Tohru that's laced with a Love Potion that affects humans. While Tohru does decide against giving it to her after a stern warning, Kobayashi still ends up having some of it accidentally after Tohru gives the chocolate to Kanna, with the young dragon then giving a piece to Kobayashi.
    • A Valentine's Day story also appears in Chapter 6 of Kanna's Daily Life, in which Ilulu assumes that the chocolate that Kanna made for Saikawa was for her.
  • Vomit Discretion Shot: A part of the cat-themed cosplay in the 2nd special blu-ray short is the display of cat allergy by Kanna and Tohru puking on the floor, but the vomit and their faces are thankfully pixelated out.
  • Wall Pin of Love: Discussed in episode 5, when a TV show Tohru watches claims this is thing that girls want their lovers to do the most.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Tohru and Elma traveled together for several decades before they began to hate each other. The outright malice between them didn't occur until Tohru grew disgusted with Elma abandoning her ideals for the sake of food and burned her palace to the ground in retaliation. That said, Kobayashi is convinced that they're more Vitriolic Best Buds than arch rivals (and Elma's dream in the first chapter of her Spin-Off hints that she would like things to go back to how they used to be).
  • Weirdness Censor:
    • Most bystanders seem to be utterly oblivious to the actions that any of the dragons take, like when Tohru used inhuman strength and speed to stop a purse snatcher, or when she fired a massive Wave Motion Gun in broad daylight that blew away storm clouds while in full dragon form. They do notice the horns, but everyone just passes that off as cosplaying. It's later explained as being caused by "cognitive inhibition" magic on the part of the dragons.
    • During the Dodgeball chapter where Tohru and friends end up fighting each other and destroy the park they're in, Lucoa states that she'll restore the park and manipulate bystander memory to keep their identities secret.
    • In chapter 38, Tohru also shows that she's capable of manipulating memories as she erases Clemene's memory.
  • Weredragon: The dragons are capable of changing between three forms. Their dragon form is their natural form, with various different appearances depending of the dragon. They can also adopt a mostly human form that retains some aspects of their dragon form, primarily their tails and horns, with the option of manifesting wings; their scales likewise shape-shift into clothing in this form. The third form is a completely human one, retaining only the scales-turned-clothing; Ilulu can't properly take this form as she has trouble hiding her claws and tail. Lucoa explains it as shifting their essence from how they naturally appear as dragons to how they would naturally appear as humans, but Fafnir's debut and Ilulu's difficulties imply they can alter their human form's appearance based on preference and experience.
  • When You Coming Home, Dad?: Averted when Kobayashi initially said she wouldn't be able to attend Parent's day (Sports Day in the anime) at Kanna's school due to it being the launch day for a project she was working on, but she then worked even more insane hours than normal to go anyway after realizing how important it was to Kanna.
  • World of Badass: Not the current setting, but the world Tohru and the others come from. In episode 2, Tohru and Kanna have an awesome DBZ-like battle with cool explosions, battle aura, and power beams. They call it playing/roughhousing, since they're only at what is considered a human level in their world.
  • World of Buxom: All of the female dragons (barring Kanna) have large breasts, much to Kobayashi's annoyance.
  • You Wanna Get Sued?:
    • In manga chapter #9, Tohru and Kanna got the impression of superhumans being real in Kobayashi's world from the film "The Ma·rix", while in the anime it was an unnamed fictional ninja movie with a ninja cutting a steel door with his sword.
    • In manga chapter #11, Kobayashi compares Tohru with a Legendary P·kémon, because she would move to a new location whenever her current home was found.
  • Yuri Genre: Downplayed and Played for Laughs, mostly; Kobayashi is shown to have little interest in anyone, romantically or sexually, let alone girls. It still doesn't stop the Tohru and Kobayashi Ship Tease.

Alternative Title(s): Kobayashi San Chi No Maid Dragon, Miss Kobayashis Dragon Maid

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Manga/MissKobayashisDragonMaid