Manga: My Bride Is A Mermaid aka: Seto No Hanayome
Do not let the above image fool you. It's far from serious.
Please laugh along. This is the beginning of young love.
While on a visit to his grandmother's, a schoolboy named Nagasumi nearly drowns in the sea. Before passing out, he catches a glimpse of a young mermaid. Nagasumi is found on the rocks, but no one believes his mermaid story... until that young girl, Sun Seto, appears at his home, asking Nagasumi to take responsibility for what happened by marrying her. Turns out that saving him broke the mermaid code of secrecy and one of them must be executed to preserve it, so Sun chose a third option by proposing marriage.Unfortunately, Sun is also the daughter of a mermaid Yakuza clan, and her fiercely-overprotective father and several other clan members are not happy with the engagement and would rather just have him killed and be done with it. And there is also the matter of keeping it a secret that Sun is a mermaid as she starts attending his school. Then of course there's the matter of Sun's pint sized body guard who would like nothing better than to murder Nagasumi. Oh, and Sun's family decide it's a great idea to off some of the staff at Nagasumi's school and take their place so they can better watch Nagasumi. Do we really have to say it?The manga started in 2002, ending in 2010 with 16 Volumes. A 26-episode TV series aired in early 2007, and a set of two OVAs followed.The anime has been licensed by Funimation under the title My Bride is a Mermaid. All 26 episodes of the anime, both subbed and dubbed, can be seen at Funimation's site here and here. The full series is available on DVD.A character sheet for this series is under construction.
Accidental Pervert: In episode 3, both Sun and Nagasumi walk in on each other within the space of 24 hours. Nagasumi winds up with broken ear drums (and an unwarranted reputation of being a deliberate pervert) both times.
Annoying Younger Sibling: The OVAs introduce Satori, Saru's kid sister. Sun bonds with her over a love of action movies, and after Nagasumi rescues her from a collapsing theater, even she begins to think he's extremely manly.
Art Evolution: In the Manga, Kimura Tahiko's art style notably changed over the series' run. Compare the art in Volume 1 to that of Volume 9, and again to even more recent artwork. It's almost hard to believe these were drawn by the same person.
Big Bad: Though the series doesn't really need one for most of it's run, it's eventually revealed that Yoshio's the one who sent Akino to evaluate the Seto gang in an attempt to break up Sun and Nagasumi, so that he can have her for himself, and even then he doesn't make an appearance until the last two episodes.
Big Damn Heroes: Two examples in the last episode. The first by the sub driven by Mikawa, which crashes into Yoshio's underwater palace and allows Sun's family (and Lunar's papa) to escape to do theirs to help Nagasumi a few moments later.
Sun does one in episode 13 to stop Lunar's marriage to Nagasumi.
Birds of a Feather: Saturn and Maruko. Both had Sun as their only friend when they were children. Both absolutely hate Nagasumi with a passion for daring to marry her (and as such take her away from them). It's no wonder they quickly became allies.
Then, Lunar makes her entrance, and we don't have to wait long to know that her cute persona on stage is merely a facade.
Both of them mellow out somewhat as the series goes along.
Maki as "Chibi Lunar-Chan", subtlypoints out Lunar's flaws in episode 22 while she's putting on her ventriloquist act. They both get into an argument, then end up fighting each other hilariously. Amazingly, the class still thinks Lunar is just putting on a good ventriloquism act.
Expies of who are suppose to be Vegeta and Trunks appear in the background together in one class room scene.
Card-Carrying Villain: It's a wise choice on the part of the director to not show just how Yakuza really make their money; Sun's family would really be nowhere as fun and lovable to watch if they are drug smuggling, gun running, prostituting extortionists who commit murder on a daily basis. Of course, after the first episode, the entire clan essentially dedicates itself to trying to ruin Nagasumi's life, so they don't have time to do any of that stuff. There was a goldfish scoop booth at a carnival in Episode 2. Nagasumi reasons that since the guy who ran the booth was an aquatic creature himself, it could possibly count as trafficking.
They, at least, hint at the "killing on a daily basis"-business, with assassins such as Maki trying to off Nagasumi on a daily basis.
Carnivore Confusion: Sun and Lunar are disturbed when they take something with fish in it (with Sun asking if that makes them cannibals). But fish do eat other fish...
Hilariously invoked with the three fish brothers during the Kyoto excursion.
Clingy Jealous Girl: Mawari, Lunar, even Sun has shown this (episode 2, although played for laughs).
Mawari even goes so far as to interrogate Nagasumi's relationship with Sun in episode 6 when she sees them leaving his house together.
Mawari (again), the class president, Lunar, and Akeno all exhibit this trope after drinking that special potion that makes you act out your innermost desires in episode 19. Hilarity Ensues as they chase him down.
At the end of episode 26, after watching Sun and Nagasumi make up, Lunar doesn't seem too happy, and hilariously knocks out her dad to vent her frustration.
Cool Car: Ren Seto is shown driving a Lamborghini at one point.
Couch Gag: The opening poem changes changes slightly every few episodes.
Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: While it takes 25 episodes for his the full extent of his Badass come out of hiding, in the second episode, Nagasumi suplexes Shark Fujishiro by grabbing him by the teeth.
He also manages to erect a "Nagasumi Barrier" when Mawari attempts to throw water at Sun in episode 6 by basically jumping in front of the water before it hits Sun.
Cry Cute: Most of the girls, particularly Sun and Lunar.
Demoted to Extra: In-universe example, Nagasumi's dad hilariously gets pushed further and further away from relevance.
Disproportionate Retribution: A lot of the male characters are often on the receiving end of this, but Nagasumi has it the worst out of all of them.
Does This Remind You of Anything?: Shiranui and, later, Sun attempting to resist their spontaneous change to mermaids when their legs are doused with water. Full package of moaning, blushing and easily misunderstood dialogue. The first scene even has severe weakness of the legs (Justified in that her legs are changing, but still can't help but look like something else).
In the first episode: "I need you to take responsibility for what happened earlier today!". If a young girl said that, with the same intensity, what is a parent going to think?
Does Not Like Men: Most of the female members of the school. To be fair, the guys at the school aren't exactly likable.
Evil Plan: Averted for the most part. The bulk of the series is about Sun and Nagasumi's growing relationship, but once the mermaid exam starts then a continuous plan by a villain shapes the remainder of the series. A mermaid nobleman wants to add Sun to his harem and needs her to break with (or otherwise seperate from) Nagasumi to make that happen.
Evolving Credits: The first ending. The picture briefly comes back in the final episode with the additions of Akeno and the kitten.
The opening also changes who's dancing from time to time as well, although Sun is always in the front. The ending adds new characters as they're introduced as well.
Heroic BSOD: Sun suffers a particularly brutal one in episode 13, after Nagasumi is forced to marry Lunar. Lunar gloats about it to her, but since she knows what Nagasumi really did, and how he really feels, even she feels a bit disgusted at herself at what's going on.
Homage: Lunar's father, who is more or less The Terminator is introduced as an important character in episode 10. Yes, ''really''.◊ There are many other parodies and homages in the series, including UC Gundam, Fist of the North Star, and Neil Armstrong.
Hopeless Suitor: Pretty much any girl not named Sun. The class president in particular is a tragic case, as she's incredibly shy around Nagasumi, and in episode 21 of the anime, she finally manages to write a love letter to Nagasumi. But her efforts are both sabotaged by her classmates, and later Sun's dad/Maki. While Played for Laughs, you can't help but feel a little sorry for her making such a fool of herself given how much courage it must've taken her to do this.
Instant Fan Club: The males at the school are divided into two large, militant, warring fan clubs over Sun and Lunar. Lunar personally leads her club in efforts to take over the school. Mawari is left leading an equally-violent third club comprised of the girls, united under 'restoring order' with the motto "All men are beasts."
Interspecies Romance: Nagasumi and Sun mainly, but the series' Love Dodecahedron also contains another mermaid and an orca, and the mermaid noble that captures Sun and tries to marry her against her will at the end of the anime is actually a catfish.
Iron Butt Monkey: Nagasumi for the most part. Saru fits this trope as well, being able to take various punishments from many characters (usually Nagasumi).
Lampshade Hanging: Done a lot through the series; notably when Nagasumi points out the falling cherry blossom petals that surround Sun when she is getting chivalrous. In one instance he asks where the petals keep coming from (they were on a boat in the middle of the ocean at the time), and in another he waves them away while trying to calm Sun down.
Large Ham: Yakuza grunts, their boss Gozaburo, and his daughter Sun. She's not as bad as the rest of the outfit but get her in a "Honor among thieves" mode and watch the cherry blossoms materalize.
Nagasumi even lampshades this when he asks Sun where the petals are falling from in episode 3.
Sun's dad gets particularly hammy during the Kyoto excursion episodes.
Virtually anyone arguing with Nagasumi ends up doing a ham-duet with him, especially Mikawa early on.
Lemony Narrator: "Cops vs Thugs" has the narrator snarking at events and character's lines.
Lethal Chef: Lunar's onigiri (rice balls) in episode 9 doesn't look particularly tasty, despite Nagasumi's mom helping her to make them.
Let Her Grow Up Dear: Compared to her borderline psychotic husband Gozaburo Seto, who has a tendency to send assassins after his son in law Nagasumi, Ren Seto was absolutely delighted when she mistook his drying of her daughter Sun's fins as public sex ("My oh my, kids will do it anywhere these days."). She provides (not so) helpful love potions to speed up their blossoming marriage along with advice and encouragement, when she's not occasionally trying to seduce the boy herself, that is.
Love Dodecahedron: Mawari and the Class Rep have crushes on Nagasumi, who is dating/engaged to Sun (but sometimes has to admit that Masa's lookin' kinda cool) while Lunar tries to secure him for herself due to a rivalry with Sun, who — the entire male population of the school in general aside — is also being pursued by Kai Mikawa, one of her childhood acquaintances, who in turn has most of the female student body swooning over him.
Love Obstructing Parents: Because it's traditionally funny that Sun's family either tries to kill Nagasumi or seduce him (or teach him how to seduce); and Sun doesn't notice most of the time.
Love Epiphany: Mawari has one towards Nagasumi in episode 6 when she gets confused as to why she gets a little distraught at seeing him and Sun together.
Both Lunar and Sun have one in episode 13 when they both do a Love Confession to him.
Love Letter Lunacy: Episode 21. Practically all of the major characters seem a bit too interested in who wrote said letter to Nagasumi.
Love Potion: With the side effect of every guy that sees him hating him, in episode 21.
Madeof Iron: Lunar's dad. Played straight for the most part, since he's able shake off things such as being hit with a rocket launcher and a Kill Sat (courtesy of NASA), and even withstands Sun's dad's attacks . Averted whenever Lunar hits him.
Mafia Princess: Sun. Lunar is technically one too, but doesn't seem to be involved much in her father's business. Maru, another of Sun's childhood friends, is also one of these, except for a family based up in Hokkaido.
Magical Girlfriend: Sun is beautiful and sweet and devoted to the protagonist, Nagasumi. She's also a mermaid with a super sonic screech attack.
Magic Music: Presumably all mermaids can do this but we only see Sun, her mom, and Lunar.
Make Me Wanna Shout: Possessed by all female mermaids, apparently (Lunar does it often, and both Akeno and Ren do it in the finale).
Meaningful Name: Nagasumi's pal/Kai's lackey Hideyoshi Sarutobi, whose family name literally means "Jumping monkey", and whose given name is a reference to a Real Lifefeudal lord who had "Monkey" as his nickname. Guess what he looks like.
Mistaken for Dying: In Episode 24, some of the students catch Mikawa leaving a clinic. Later Saru overhears an out-of-context conversation between the doctor and a nurse, and assumes that Mikawa must have a terminal illness. Eventually Mikawa even comes to believe he's dying, and seems at peace towards the end. Then they find out what he really had, and everything reverts back to normal, more or less.
Mood Whiplash: The end of episode 12, which starts out comical, then suddenly shifts to being serious as Nagasumi is forcefully taken away from Sun.
More Dakka: Maki's conchshell gun seems to operate on this. In one episode, Sun's dad also has a machine gun in episode 8, which served no purpose other than to shoot up Nagasumi's house. Lunar's dad also uses a gun when shooting at Nagasumi in episode 12.
Mushroom Samba: Episode 19 has all the girls (and Saru) drinking Uoihatsu, forcing them to "act oninstinct". In other words, they got drunk.
New Transfer Student: Sun, Lunar, Kai, Akeno...and that's not counting Sun's family replacing half the school staff.
The cast starts lampshading this after the first few transfers.
Nice Guy: Nagasumi for the most part. Which is partly why so many of the female characters, such as Lunar and the class rep, are attracted to him, even if they think he's only average in looks and brains.
Later, an even worse case of this almost leads to a Shotgun Wedding with Lunar.
When Nagasumi and Mawari saw Sun and Akeno undergoing endurance training together in the bathhouse, the two mermaids looked rather... provocative.
Nun Too Holy: Sun's other childhood friend (she seems to have a lot of these) Maruko Okhotsk, wears a customized nun's habit. Which is odd, considering the religion she follows isn't Christianity at all, but something akin to what the Ainu people of northern Japan believe in.
Once an Episode: Masa does something kinda cool, and Nagasumi and/or his mother swoon over him. Sun gives her Catch Phrase (or similar) in a dramatic voice in a spotlight amidst falling cherry blossom petals. Nagasumi narrowly escapes death. Not so much in the second half.
The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: The most villainous thing the Seto Syndicate seems to do is run a shopping channel that seems to be selling "Fin Weights", porn (fish porn at that, for mermaids, see?) and Lance of Longinus copies.
And make a kid's life miserable, but that is somewhat justified, somewhat.
Really (and given the story, this probably shouldn't come as a surprise) the biggest asshole is a member of the Government.
Reset Button: Averted between episodes 11 and 12. At the end of episode 11, the house has been destroyed by Giant Nagasumi. At the start of episode 12, we see everyone in the house like usual...however, it's quickly established that Sun and Lunar's dads used their connections to have the house rebuilt between episodes (Nagasumi's mom even gushes about how much she loves the new kitchen!) In fact, this indirectly leads into the Wham Episode.
Rule Of Cool: The various fights taking place throughout the series, most notably the intentionally exaggerated Grand Finale.
Serious Business: The Sun vs Lunar fan club war. It almost tore the school apart.
The dating sim episode 20. Both Lunar and Sun's dads end up cosplaying and getting a little too in-character with the visual novel they're playing, which freaks both of the girls out.
Mawari tends to think of this too when trying to enforce school rules. It's not very effective most of the time.
When Sun's dad pulls the fire alarm in episode 14 which causes several firetrucks to show up at the school. Mikawa also calls in some fighter jets. After Ren finds out they both did that simply because of a kitten, she beats them all up for going overboard, while Masa apologizes profusely for wasting the firemen's time.
Solar and Lunar: Sun and Lunar tend to be associated with the sun and the moon for obvious reasons. Sun is an honorable woman and kind to everyone she meets while Lunar has a bit of a rotten side and is Sun's Sitcom Arch-Nemesis.
Spell My Name with an S: Sun/San and Lunar/Luna/Runa are the main cases, though most official material (And the Funimation translations) give their names as Sun and Lunar.
Super Reflexes: Nagasumi has this from time to time. Such as whenever a character attempts to hit one of the mermaids with water, like Mawari on Sun, and later Maki on Akeno (although he fails to completely block her attacks). In episode 21, he also activates a super-evasive mode, allowing him to dodge all the hits from both Sun AND Lunar's fathers. At the same time.
Supporting Harem: Other than a close call with Lunar, none of the girls really have a shot at Nagasumi. It's pretty obvious that he only wants Sun.
Suspiciously Similar Song: A major offender, contains alternate versions (rip offs) of Ride of The Valkyrie, Terminator, Phantom of The Opera etc.
Lunar's "Song of Battle" has a... less refined sort of similar effect.
Theme Naming: Times two yet. Mermaid characters will usually have an important body of water inserted into their family names (Seto Inland Sea, Tokyo Bay (Edomae), Shiranui Sea, Mikawa Bay, the Sea of Okhotsk), and a celestial object as their given one (Sun, Lunar, Akeno (Ake no Myoujo = Venus in the Eastern Sky), Kai (Kaiousei = Neptune)).
Saturn is also added to the celestial list.
The Obi-Wan: Masa often gives useful advice to several characters, usually Nagasumi.
Yamato Nadeshiko: Sun is extremely devoted to Nagasumi, to the point that she decided to follow him to Saitama and live under the same roof as her fiancé. She was even willing to bet herself for her future husband's contest. What truly sells it is when she Interups Lunar's Shot Gun Wedding while wearing a wedding kimono and carrying a katana, which she then uses to great effect.
Nagasumi's grandmother is sweet and caring and strangely adaptable to the craziness that has invaded her family.
Note that Sun, despite her YN traits, subverts it in the speaking department, at least in English. Instead of the formal speech patterns of more traditional Y Ns like Belldandy or Aoi Sakuraba, Sun has a more "casual" register, with contracted words and dropped final "g"s.