is a very light and happy manga that was published by Weekly Shonen Jump from 2007 through 2013, written by Shinohara Kenta.
The manga follows the main character Bossun and campus support group, the Sket Dan, as they help out everybody in need and accept any sorts of missions. From chasing and capturing a monkey, to performing at school concerts, collect toys, try to win all-you-can-eat contests and solve crimes. There are also AU chapters where they go on adventures as ninjas and fly through space. The plot is basically non-existent except for a few more serious and dark story arcs that merely serve as backstory for the Sket trio. The entire manga is full of Shout Outs
to any popular manga you can imagine with hilarious lampshades over each and every of them, a boke-tsukkomi routine and an occasional sledgehammer to the fourth wall.
- Yusuke Fujisaki, known as Bossun, is the leader and founder of the Sket Dan. A fairly normal guy (perhaps too normal according to some), he's loyal to his friends and possesses a strong desire to help others.
- Hime Onizuka, known as Himeko, is the muscle of the group. A former field hockey player turned Yankee Delinquent, she now serves as both an enforcer and Team Mom.
- Kazuyoshi Usui, known as Switch is The Smart Guy. An Otaku, he has an unparalleled information network among his fellow nerds and the internet at large, making him the go-to guy for data on other students or various bits of culture or technology. Technically The Voiceless for his own reasons, he carries around a laptop and uses a text-to-speech synthesizer for communicating with others, though he tends to insert various terms and expressions that wouldn't be out of place on a messageboard lol \(^-^)/
Over all, it's random, fourth wall-breaking, random, funny, random and absolutely adorable. Got an anime adaptation in the Spring 2011 season
The character page
is in the development stages.
Do not confuse with Skip Beat!
This series features examples of:
- Kamehame Hadoken: The Koma cannon, which Koma-chan unleashes when she's feeling embarrassed. Although it was initially only a slam to the face.
- Large Ham: Switch, Dante and Roman in particular.
- Late for School: Lampshaded and parodied, as Roman is incapable of writing a manga without including this opening.
- Legacy Character: There has been at least three different generations of a group or club of helping other people.
- The Sket Dan was this (without they knowing about it) to the Otasuke-gumi (which leader was no one but the Director of the Disciplinary Commitee when he was a high school student).
- The Pocket Dan, formed by Tact, Silk and Smile. They originally wanted to take over the Sket Dan when they met, and wanted to robe their "clients" (as there couldn't be two simultaneous groups with the similar interests, approved by the Student Council). However, they start realizing that next year when Bossun and the others got graduated, there wouldn't be another Sket Dan, so they dissolve their group and formally become part of the Sket Dan.
- Let Us Never Speak of This Again: A certain incident that happened during the School Trip Rhapsody arc. Really, just don't mention it at all.
- Like Brother and Sister: Bossun and Himeko usually see their relationship this way. However, they act much more similar to an old married couple.
- Long-Lost Relative: As it turns out, Bossun has a twin brother, Sasuke Tsubaki
- Love Dodecahedron: Regarding Saaya's feelings... at least in her brother Soujirou's mind.
- It's actually more of a Love Triangle for Saaya, since she has confessed already her feelings to Bossun (and it was hinted to Himeko when she was in Bossun's body during the School Trip Rhapsody arc when she told him (her) about it), but he's still somewhat unaware of what Himeko truly feels for him.
- Magic Versus Science: Convoked in the supernatural/occult vs technology/science debates which Reiko and Switch usually engage into.
- Medium Awareness: Roman can tear through pages to travel through space and time, wield speech bubbles and tone as weapons, and manipulate narration boxes. It takes up to eleven in the Back Then chapter when she is clearly manipulating her 1st-year-student flashback with everything the page appears with. The narrator gave up in the end.
- Meido: Himeko has one of these outfits, from when her class ran the obligatory Maid Cafe for the school festival. It turns up in a later chapter.
- Misplaced Kindergarten Teacher: Part of the way through the manga, the Sket Dan gets Remi Misora as their assistant homeroom teacher. She used to be the host of a pre-schooler show, like Sesame Street or Barney apparently.
- Mood Whiplash: Along with Gintama, the series run with it in Shonen Jump by mix-and-matching comedy and drama. The series is usually comedy-themed, and could suddenly be stroke with a dramatic arc that could affect permanently the series, in contrast to some of slapstick that invokes the Status Quo Is God.
- Mundane Made Awesome: Bossun's "Concentration Mode" is usually heralded by dramatic techno music and swirly space imagery, since a minute-long shot of Bossun sitting very still while wearing goggles would admittedly be boring. He screams "Concentration Mode" before putting his thoughts and details he perceived with attention, because he wanted to have a cool catchphrase as well.
- New Transfer Student: Teppei Sugihara is introduced as such at the very beginning of the series.
- Nobody Poops: Averted. There's even a full chapter dedicated to Bossun's Potty Emergency.
- Nice Hat: Bossun's Poppman red hat, Roman's Shout-Out to Osamu Tezuka, Silk's & Smile's.
- Non-Action Guy: Switch, who is always at the sidelines.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Agata Soujirou. The former Student Council President. He's really a Magnificent Bastard when he proposes it into, however... he is a bit of a Ditzy Genius, and quite a case of Brilliant but Lazy.
- Off Model: It happens often, from off modeling the Gintama characters in the crossover episode (justified since Gintama is produced by Sunrise and Sket Dance by Tatsunoko), depending on who is directing the episodes... and who is also animating. Try to not cringe in the first episodes when they start to use the 3rd opening animation. Hopefully, this was corrected later in the airings and subsequent DVD releases.
- The Omniscient Council of Vagueness: Parodied with the Kaimei Academy Disciplinary Commitee (to SEELE, for lord's sake...). The academy's director is not part of this council, of course, and it's also implied that Prof. Yamanobe belongs in it as well, as many other teachers from the academy.
- One Steve Limit: Inverted in one chapter (full of Japanese writing/pronunciation puns) and taken to its logical conclusion.
- Overly Narrow Superlative: Himeko calls Bossun "the number one in Japan when it comes in finding a way of breaking out of a warehouse with long arms" during the first part of "Costume Break".
- Paper-Thin Disguise: The notorious afro costume. And of course: Deer Man and the Sket Squad Kyeunja. Cue Big Damn Heroes moment.
- The Pilot: As many other series of the Weekly Shonen Jump, Sket Dance counts with two one-shots: one that was published in Akamaru Jump in 2006, and another one in the WSJ. The first one, is still something darker than the series was going to be. The one published in the WSJ before the serialization is more closer to what the series was going to be later.
- Potty Emergency: A full chapter dedicated to Bossun with a touch of Toilet Humour... really, poor Bossun... And in the School Trip Rhapsody arc this also happens again, to Bossun... while in Himeko's body and Himeko in Bossun's body as well.
- Power Trio: Bossun (ego), Himeko (id), and Switch (superego) of course.
- Punny Name: The author takes an advantage a little too far in naming his characters.
- Onizuka Hime
- The Anime club president is called Otakura.
- Episode 15 gives us J-son-sensei and Omi Aiko.
- Yuuki Reiko. The kanji is different, but Yuurei means ghost in Japanese. In fact, using differnt kanji, you can interpret "Yuuki Reiko" as something like "Dark willed, spirit child." Perfect for our resident occult-freak.
- Usami Hani, implying her double personality problem ("Hani" is how Honey is pronounced in Japanese (like, say, Cutey Honey), "Usa" comes from bunny, mostly referring to the Ms. Fanservice ones).
- Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The Sket Dan, the Student Council... though, almost the entire Kaimei student body have their quirks and individual characteristics.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red: Himeko, Blue: Switch
- Reed Richards Is Useless: Chuuma-sensei has, on his way to inventing an effective hair restoration topical (which alone would net him billions), a freaking de-aging potion! Its only flaw? That it might be permanent! It's strictly Played for Laughs.
- Replacement Goldfish:
- Kazuyoshi to his little brother, Masafumi. Or so, it was implied to be his original intention after Masafumi died. A year before the actual start of the series, he copied his image, and took his original nickname "Switch". Kazuyoshi used to be laid back and fairly normal, until he was guilt tripped due to the circumstances that led to his little brother's death. He knew that he would never replace him but he only wanted to preserve Masafumi's image just for a little longer more. The whole story is a massive tearjerker, giving the public a good idea of why he is such a weird guy.
- In the pre-serialization pilot chapter, it was Deconstructed and Invoked. Ichiro's girlfriend Nanako died in an accident. Her twin sister, Namiko invoked this trope in order to help him cope.
- Sadist Teacher: Kutsuwa Daijirou. Especially when he was tranferred to Kaimei, imposing rules to anyone, and mostly threatening Himeko because she was formerly known as a delinquent. He was a teacher from the middle school where Kiri was one of its students. He was the main reason on why Kiri didn't trust in anyone, as a result of bullying some of the students, such as Kiri's friend, Kihara. Of course, he was pretty shocked when Kutsuwa was transferred in Kaimei. And then he threatened him with his life as revenge.
- Scary Shiny Glasses: Switch often falls into this, especially since his expression rarely changes at all. See the Stoic Spectacles example below.
- Sensei-chan: Remi Misora and Kunio Yamanobe (being himself a male example).
- Separated at Birth: Bossun and Tsubaki.
- The Seven Mysteries: As any Japanese school, the academy has its own "The Seven Mysteries of Kaimei"... it was a relevant topic in one of the novels, and it was referred again in the Fanbook.
- Ship Tease:
- In episode 28 of the anime, there are some scenes with Agata and Michiru that contain this. There weren't such scenes in the manga because of the Adaptation Distillation the anime suffered.
- There's plenty Ship Tease towards Bossun and Himeko through all of the series. It doesn't help that both of them are pretty Oblivious to Love in some ways or another, since Bossun helped her in the first place (and then he gave to her her necklace, he once repleid she would be such a great wife, the incident of Samurai and Purin, to mention some examples). Same goes with Saaya and Bossun, which lead to her confession some chapters after.
- This is also played in some ways with Tsubaki and Daisy in one chapter/episode where he wants to help/save her from being blackmailed.
- Shout-Out: Has its own page.
- Show Within a Show: Quite a lot of them, and, more often than not, completely uncomprehensible.
- Shipper on Deck:
- Chuuma-sensei's daughter ships him and Misora Remi. And she succeeds in making them into a couple. Chapter later, they get married.
- It's strongly hinted at that both Captain and Switch favour Bossun/Himeko. In fact, Switch even lampshades that he was shipping them together since the very beginning!
- Shrinking Violet: Tsubaki of all people is revealed to be this in the past.
- Sliding Scale of Fourth Wall Hardness: Most of the time it stays at Lampshade Hanging, with occasional slipping into Medium Awareness. Then Roman shows up and completely shatter the fourth wall to pieces.
- Something Completely Different: Given its primary genre is comedy, this is something that happens when you less expect it, from its episodic normal chapters, to the "alternate world" ones, and jump into the dramatic (even the back stories) arcs that help in provide some character developments in the middle, and then pretty much returns to its normal formula. It happens often.
- Stalker with a Crush: Played with in the worst way in "Switch Off", where it is revealed that Sawa's stalker was actually her best friend, Yukino, who was jealous of her.
- The Speechless: Smile from the Pocket Dan is mute. Tact and Silk have to interpret what he is trying to say to other people.
- Split Personality: Usami Hani, is a quiet girl who does not like boys. When she touches one, she turns into her alter-ego, Bunny, who flirts with every boy she sees. She will revert back to Usami when touched by a girl.
- Stoic Spectacles: Daisy and Yagi. Subverted with Switch, who despite never changing his facial expression, is pretty clearly a Deadpan Snarker Large Ham.
- Stylistic Suck: Used pretty frequently, most often with Roman or Himeko.
- Also used with Sainon and Magarfunkle of the Shonen Manga Club and their completely incoherent story, "Space Cosmos Universe" from the manga battle chapter. Much to Himeko's disdain.
- Any time where we got to see any character's manga, or any Show Within a Show, it's almost certain this trope is in effect.
- Talking with Signs:
- Switch is forced to communicate thusly if his computer stops working.
- In episode 4 whenever Roman does an Art Shift into Manga style panels her dialogue appears in speech bubbles, even though it can still be heard.
- Smile reccurs to this when speaking to his teammates.
- Team Mom: Himeko cooks, cleans and fawns over small adorable things. Also doubles as the Team Momma Bear.
- Team Pet: Housuke, the Scops owl.
- Terrible Artist: Himeko is a terrible artist. Roman is somehow even worse, and as an aspiring manga artist she creates nigh-incomprehensible works that read like a combination of shojo and JoJo. Shojojo. She even won a competition.
- Tsubaki as well. His idea of a good T-shirt is two kanji characters on a plain white design. He almost got a Heroic BSOD when Agata pointed out how lame it is. And then he tried to make a "stylish" T-Shirt... which is so lame Agata cried when wearing it.
- The Thing That Goes Doink
- Tomato Surprise: And it works so well in the manga and the anime. The last chapter of "Switch Off", when we realize that "An-chan" is Usui Kazuyoshi, the current Switch (it was indeed also well disguised in the credits of the anime adaptation) "One Guy's Quiet Day Off" makes it seem that the guy is a hatless Bossun up until The Reveal (blame the Generation Xerox that exists with Bossun and his dad... to an extent where Hiroyuki Yoshino, did BOTH voices).
- Took a Level in Badass: Roman and Yuuki turn from a Damsel in Distress and a ghost, respectively, into highly trained ninjas less than a page in the ninja Alternate Universe.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Himeko loves Pelolipop Candy, and it has weird flavors such as: Sea Cucumber, Soft-Roe and Liver. Anyone else who eats them usually vomits.
- Troll: Oh, Switch... In one chapter, Bossun and Himeko has an anti-tsukkomi competition. What did a nice, good friend like Switch do? Invite Roman and Cherry to the clubroom, of course!
- Tsundere: Parodied and exemplified by Saaya ever since her introduction, which started with the discussion of the trope itself due to a dating sim's character. However, Himeko fits as a tsundere as well, especially with Bossun, amplified during their awkward moments.
- Twin Switch: While Bossun and Tsubaki are fraternal twins rather than identical ones, they take advantage of this as a tactic... which has its good and down sides.
- In order to defeat the the fortune teller in chapters 103 and 104, Bossun and Tsubaki (with freshly trimmed eyelashes) switch places. When she tries to tell Bossun's future, it's proved that the fortune teller uses intel on the subject she's reading to make a fortune seem more legitimate.
- Shinba approaches this to put an end to the Love Dodecahedron around Saaya in Agata's mind to let him concentrate for the second shance of the Tokyo U entrance exams. However, Tsubaki doesn't know he is part of this plan.
- In chapter 217, Bossun exploits this to trick the Student Council, and unexpectedly, they fell for it. Obviously, afterwards, Tsubaki finds out and it's not amused of it.
- Two Guys and a Girl: Not so much with the Sket Trio as it is with Ryosuke, Haru, and Akane.
- Undying Loyalty: Himeko and Switch have unwavering faith in Bossun. Also, Kiri pronounced Tsubaki his master at the end of the Solitude arc.
- Unflinching Walk: The Sket Dan convocates this after complications of being trapped inside a warehouse in the mini arc of chapter 76-77.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension: Bossun and Himeko, in spades, especially after the "Ogress" arc, with quite a few Ship Tease moments sprinkled every few chapters or so. In-universe nods to these make the pairing canon.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Despite the constant bickering, Bossun and Himeko are shown to actually care for each other a lot, slowly approaching Belligerent Sexual Tension territory.
- The Voiceless: Switch, who communicates via text-to-speech with a laptop.
- Wacky Homeroom: After the Sket Dan pass to their Third Year of High School, their new class contains every recurring character in the same group.
- Weapon of Choice: Himeko is basically a street brawler (although a retired and reformed one), so she uses a field hockey stick as a weapon. Bossun and Switch are non-combative types, but Bossun, as a bratty type, can be very skillful with a slingshot if necessary.
- Switch's laptop may count as a Gadgeteer Genius. During a mock duel, even though he's a horrible shot, his laptop and calm demeanor allows him to get the upper hand on Daisy.
- Meanwhile, Shinzo swings a bamboo practice sword and Tsubaki uses boxing gloves when prompted.
- Weirdness Magnet: While not supernatural, the Sket Dan members have noticed that it's usually the people with the most colorful personalities who tend to show up at their door.
- Wham Episode:
- "Ogress", where it reveals the backstory of Himeko.
- "Happy Birthday" / "Happy Rebirthday", the arc that not only reveals the original motivations of Bossun to form the Sket Dan, but also reveals that he and Tsubaki are long lost twin brothers.
- "Switch Off" and "Switch On", the backstory about Switch, on how he became a shut in, and how he integrated to the Sket Dan.
- "Solitude" for Kiri.
- The last chapter of "Last Dance", when Switch finally decides to speak.
- What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: Bossun has "the power... of incredible concentration" (admittedly pretty useful in a school environment) in addition to being a talented artist and impressionist, and a savant at riddles. But as others have pointed out, none of these are particularly heroic skills.
- The Concentration mode is actually extremely helpful. Among others, it grants Bossun near photographic memory, extremely fast calculations, and ability to create an elaborate plan in minutes.
- What the Hell, Hero?:
- Te-chan in episode 7 is only a supporting character but Bossun's rant at him is nearer this than a "The Reason You Suck" Speech. Though considering his dedication to the girl he loves Te-chan could be seen as the Hero of Another Story.
- Touched in "Switch On". Kazuyoshi is trying to play as a 'hero', just to apply justice and a well-deserved punishment to the 'bad people' that he digs dark info of, engaging them into a 'Death Fight' which the loser will have all of his 'sins' exposed to the world. He thinks he is one too, at the end, especially driven out of the guilt he still feels, months later after his brother's death. Bossun calls him off after discovering his charade AND receiving help from him to get straight... to him.
- Who Would Want to Watch Us?: Kenta Shinohara's Author Avatar shows up at the school looking for inspiration for a new manga series. Bossun thinks that it would be perfect to make the Sket Dan incredibly popular. Unfortunately, "Enta Hinohara" decides that Bossun is too boring to be a shonen lead character and makes a manga about the Student Council instead.
- Wrong Genre Savvy: Kendo club captain Shinzou Takemitsu dresses and acts like a samurai from a period piece (for the most part), while Roman Saotome loves old-school shojo to the point where she can mentally filter the world to match the tropes.
- X Must Not Win: Telling the Student Council or the Sket Dan that the other group is involved in something is a perfect way get to them to join in. This is especially pronounced with Tsubaki and Bossun, due to Sibling Rivalry.