Manga: Snow White And Seven Dwarfs

"If you can smile it off, you'll always manage somehow!"
—Takeru Shakudou

Two years ago, Tokyo was supposedly hit by meteors, rendering it an island isolated from the rest of the world, receiving help from only the Governor Kuroyuki. However, their saviour soon revealed herself to be a dictator, and any attempts to defy her now are pointless, as she wields an army of tekigousha—people who possess right arms with mysterious abilities.

One day, Takeru Shakudou awakens, with no memories of the past two years and suddenly discovering his power as a tekigousha. Quickly discovering the cruelty of Kuroyuki's reign, he vows to take her down and restore happiness to the people, no matter how hard he has to fight.

Snow White and Seven Dwarfs (Shirayukihime to 7-nin no Shuujin) is a manga by Kuroko Yabuguchi and serialized by Weekly Young Jump, though its title can also be read as Snow White and the Seven Prisoners. It takes place in a post-apocalyptic Japan, and is very loosely based off of the original tale of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

Tropes associated with Snow White and Seven Dwarfs:

  • Abusive Parents:
    • Fujimaru's mother sold him to the government and never looked back. He's understandably still bitter over it.
    • Shirayuki's mother is Kuroyuki. Self-explanatory, really.
    • Ken's father was ready to disown Ken simply for not living up to his standards and apparently had Ken undergo experimentation to become a tekigousha in order to win his approval.
  • Affably Evil: A number of villains—namely, Ken, before his Heel-Face Turn, Haruyama, and Mogami.
  • After the End: Tokyo's been reduced to a post-apocalyptic state, due to meteors having struck two years ago.
  • Alas, Poor Villain:
    • Takeru isn't very happy when Uzuki dies. See Let Them Die Happy below.
    • Shirayuki mourns Amagiya when the latter dies, remembering how he looked after her.
  • Anti-Villain: All of the enemy tekigousha have sympathetic backstories, or at the very least, just want to live and know that being Kuroyuki's yes-man is the only way to do it.
  • Arc Words: Some variation of "If you keep on smiling, you'll find happiness," doubling as a series-spread Survival Mantra of sorts.
  • Arm Cannon: Ken has one, as does Ryuuichi (two, in fact).
  • Armor-Piercing Question: Takeru constantly asks these to Fujimaru in an attempt to get him to pull a Heel-Face Turn.
    "As it now, are you still gonna be that old woman's prisoner...?"
  • The Atoner: Fujimaru, post-Heel-Face Turn. He decides to take responsibility for everything he's done and not take the easy way out by giving up. To a lesser extent, Ken and Ryuuichi in the epilogue as well.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Essentially, any character who's high up in the chains of commanding will pose more of a threat than their subordinates.
  • Avenging the Villain: Ryuuichi, for Uzuki.
  • Awesome Anachronistic Apparel: Souichi and Souji's clothing, though the revision explains that it's for practical purposes, not for fashion: that style of clothing is easier to adjust as they age/de-age.
  • Badass: Everyone.
  • Badass Crew: Takeru and co. On the villains' side, there's the hunter squad, led by Izumi and includes Uzuki and Ryuuichi.
  • Badass Family: If a character has a sibling, both that character and his sibling will be a Badass.
  • Badass Longcoat: One version of the government uniform seems to come with one, worn by Fujimaru at first, Izumi, and Amagiya.
  • Bandage Babe: It'd probably be easier to list the characters who aren't one at some point, given how often they get injured and the short span of time that the story covers.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Takeru. Souji as well.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Souichi towards Souji, Takeru towards Shirayuki, and Izumi towards Takeru. Possibly Ken towards Fujimaru if you interpret their friendship in a brotherly manner, given their age gap.
  • Big Brother Is Watching: A mild version, but Hachiouji's noted to have cameras and traps set up everywhere (courtesy of Fujimaru) to prevent rebellion.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Given the genre, this obviously happens often:
    • Fujimaru, after splitting from the group, returns to their aid a chapter later, driving between Takeru & Souichi and Ken right before the latter shoots the former two.
    • When Uzuki is about to kill the group (starting with Takeru), one very half-dead Ken comes to their aid.
    • As Takeru and Souichi struggle to defeat two hunters and the military comes to the latter's aid, Souji comes to save them (much to their surprise, as he was supposed to have been sleeping at Akane's place).
    • When Takeru, Souichi, and Souji are trapped with no way to return to the others and escape, a newly recovered Ken appears on the scene.
    • When Haruyama and Mogami are about to kill Ken and Fujimaru, Souichi, who's just finished being operated on by Akane, jumps into the fray.
    • As Ryuuichi's about to finish off Souichi, Fujimaru and co. come bursting in with a hijacked vehicle, allowing them and Souichi to escape the scene.
  • Bio-Augmentation: What each tekigousha has been through to give them their special right arm.
  • Bittersweet Ending: It's easy to overlook with how heartwarming the epilogue is, but Ken is likely permanently estranged from his father who may become a new threat, Souichi and Souji are still dying, Izumi is still badly injured, Ryuuichi is implied to still have emotional issues, Fujimaru has become an Ill Boy, Amagiya is currently insane (admittedly, most don't treat this as being all that different from how the man usually is), and altogether, the ex-employees are Reformed, but Rejected by many. On the other hand, their main obstacle is gone, Tokyo is being reformed/rebuilt, and befitting the theme of the series, everyone is happy/on the path to recovery in spite of all the lingering problems.
  • Blade Lock: Sort of. More like Amagiya's claws were pierced through Souichi's blade arm, but it otherwise has the same effect.
  • Blessed with Suck: The tekigousha, as their abilities tend to come with nasty side effects.
  • Broken Pedestal: Takeru initially believes there's no way his brother would ally with Kuroyuki, before discovering that, well, he has.
  • Can't Kill You, Still Need You: This line of thinking is why Ken initially urges Fujimaru to return to the government, knowing that he's still vital enough that he could get away with a minimal punishment.
  • Character Name and the Noun Phrase: It is based off of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, after all.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • The Mirror Room is mentioned in the beginning of the series, but doesn't come into play until the finale.
    • On his deathbed, Amagiya, in his beast-like state, licks Shirayuki's hand. This ends up saving his life, as he ingested some of her regenerative blood.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: The three girls seen with Kuroyuki at the beginning of the series return for the finale as one of the main threats.
  • Child Soldier: Various characters.
  • Closed Circle: Somewhat. Tokyo has been rendered an island, and so the civilians/heroes can't expect any help from the outside world, which only the government has contact with.
  • Clothing Damage: See Limited Wardrobe. When you don't have extra clothes and you're constantly fighting, your clothing are inevitably going to get ripped/burned over time.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: A bit of one for Takeru, as the reason he was dumped in Hachiouji to begin with was so that he could decide for himself the path he wanted to walk on. And Izumi is quite proud of the decisions that Takeru made.
  • Complete Immortality: Kuroyuki and Shirayuki. Takeru seems to have inherited it from Shirayuki in the finale.
  • Crapsack World: A crapsack Tokyo, at least.
  • Curtains Match The Windows: Akane and the Ushio brothers.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Many characters.
  • Debut Queue: See Story Arc. While character arcs overlap, the main cast is introduced sequentially, for the most part.
  • Declaration of Protection: Both Takeru and Amagiya towards Shirayuki.
  • De-power: This happened to Souichi before the start of the series. And both Shirayuki and Fujimaru at the end of the series, for different reasons.
  • Detect Evil: Shirayuki can't really do this and the series' morality is much too grey for that to begin with, but Takeru always defers to her judgment as to whether someone is trustworthy or not (much to Fujimaru's frustration).
    Takeru: "Haha! Aren't these the same eyes that saw through you, Fujimaru?"
  • Determinator: You really can't keep the heroes down. On the villains' side, Ryuuichi deserves special mention—part of the final battle is essentially him chasing the heroes everywhere in an attempt to avenge Uzuki's death.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: Amagiya, in Shirayuki's.
  • Differently Powered Individual: Aka the tekigousha.
  • Disney Death: Amagiya, in the finale. He ultimately survives by having ingested Shirayuki's regenerative blood.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: As far as the Hachiouji officials are concerned, just about anything is grounds for arresting you and sending you off to mandatory labour.
  • Downer Ending: The series itself definitely doesn't have one, but the Faith arc does, essentially ending on the note, "Rocks fall, everybody but the heroes dies, and Kuroyuki wins!"
  • Driven to Suicide: A sadly large amount of characters have either contemplated/attempted/gone through with this.
    • Kuroyuki's husband did this in the past, when he realized how far Kuroyuki had gone.
    • Though not entirely clear, it's heavily implied that after being kidnapped back, Shirayuki tries to commit a Heroic Suicide in the latter half of the series.
    • Nakanoshita tried to kill himself in the past, over the guilt of everything he'd done according to Kuroyuki's orders. Izumi was the one who stopped him.
    • Though more of the Death Seeker variety, Fujimaru has had suicidal thoughts in the past, and Ryuuichi shows signs of this in the finale.
    • In a subversion, the heroes disguise the murders of a few government employees as this.
  • Due to the Dead: Compared to the government, which tends to dump bodies in sewers or leaves the bodies to rot in Nerima, the heroes (Takeru, particularly) believe in burying the bodies that they can. Respect for the dead, overall, seems to be a theme in the series—Shirayuki believes that you should Never Speak Ill of the Dead, compared to Kuroyuki who's happy to disrespect the fallen.
  • Dysfunction Junction: Being a post-apocalyptic Tokyo that revolves around dictatorships and human experimentation, you can expect a fair amount of Dark and Troubled Pasts. That said, most of the characters ultimately cope with them in a healthy manner.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Seeing how the characters live in a Crapsack World and Takeru makes it very clear that he's fighting For Happiness, with the series falling on the idealistic end of the Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism, this is a given.
  • Elite Mooks: The hunter squad.
  • The End of the World as We Know It: Meteors crashing into Tokyo, which occurred two years ago and threatens to happen again in the finale. Courtesy of Kuroyuki with Shirayuki's Grim Rock and a special device.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: A family photo of one of Takeru's kills kindly reminds the reader that even though working for a dictatorship isn't exactly a nice thing to do, the employees still have families and loved ones.
  • Everybody's Dead, Dave: In the Faith arc, all of the residents of Shibuya and two of three of its Ward Chiefs end up dying, leaving only the heroes and Tama as the survivors.
  • Evil Tower of Ominousness: Shinjuku's base, aka where Kuroyuki resides and the final destination, as can be seen in the page picture.
  • Evil Versus Evil: Amagiya, after Jumping Off the Slippery Slope, goes after Kuroyuki in the finale.
  • Exhausted Eye Bags: Characters tend to sport these during the experimentation or when they're incompatible.
  • Fake Memories: Kuroyuki implanted these in Uzuki, hence the girl's unwavering devotion.
  • Family Theme Naming: Souichi and Souji's names are nearly the same, with the meaning of the second (and different) syllable going from 'one' to 'two,' respectively. There being a Shirayuki (aka 'white snow') and a Kuroyuki (aka 'black snow') isn't a coincidence either.
  • Fan Disservice: Kuroyuki and Uzuki bathing together, in hindsight. Knowing that Uzuki has been brainwashed into loyalty, the sexual nature of their relationship suddenly has very disturbing implications.
  • Fanservice:
    • In one chapter cover and in the back page of the first two volumes, we get Kuroyuki dressed skimpily.
    • On the other end of the spectrum, Takeru and Izumi go shirtless a few times.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Aside from those who already knew one another (i.e. the Ushio brothers, Fujimaru and Ken), the heroes are this.
  • Food End: The series ends with all of the surviving characters at a group meal together.
  • For Happiness: A driving theme behind the series. Naturally, Earn Your Happy Ending applies as well.
  • For Science!: Kuroyuki's motivation, and presumably the motivation of a number of scientists working with her. On the reverse end, Akane is a benevolent version.
  • Forced Into Evil: A few of the villains—notably, the Shibuya Ward Chiefs, who are being blackmailed to kill the heroes.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Amagiya comments that if Shirayuki weren't with the heroes, he'd raze the districts to the ground to deal with them. While it's a complete coincidence In-Universe, that's exactly how Kuroyuki tries to kill them when they're in Shibuya.
    • Mogami tells Fujimaru that if someone (that isn't Mogami, specifically) were to have a limb torn off, they'd certainly die. Guess how Uzuki ends up dying shortly afterwards? Granted, it was more so having her general right half blown off, but still.
  • Friendship Moment: Fujimaru and Ken often have these.
  • Funny Background Event: When Shirayuki takes off her shirt and has Takeru place his hand on her chest (It Makes Sense in Context), Souichi can be seen slapping a hand over Souji's eyes in the background.
  • Genetic Engineering Is the New Nuke: The tekigousha are created by having humans undergo experimentation, making them Humans Weapons. The Grim Rock, which started the entire thing, is a parasite of sorts connected to meteors from space.
  • Gilded Cage: Shirayuki lives in one.
  • Go Out with a Smile: Uzuki, dying with her delusions, and Amagiya, 'dying' in Shirayuki's arms.
  • Good Is Not Soft: Takeru's a great guy, but he won't pull any punches. The same can be said about most of the heroes, for that matter, as aside from Souichi and Fujimaru, they're all genuinely friendly people... who just so happen to be willing to act as terrorists to liberate Tokyo.
  • Good Samaritan: The heroes are helped by a few.
    • Upon discovering the amnesiac Takeru, Makoto helps him regain his bearings and get adjusted to the new Tokyo. This ends up getting him wrapped up in Takeru's problems for a while, which Takeru apologizes for at the end of the arc, though Makoto did come out of it a happier person.
    • Later on in Suginami, Megumi goes out of her way to introduce the heroes to Akane, explaining that she can't just ignore them when they have children and ill/injured people wih them. All things considered, Souichi probably didn't have to coerce her into helping them cross the border in the first place.
  • Gorn: It's a seinen manga, so this shouldn't be a surprise. Even the heroes are willing to kill their enemies in very bloody manners if need be.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Uncommon for this series, but when Souji kills a hunter through sonic movements, as it cuts to the remains of the man's corpse without showing the exact moment of death.
  • Gratuitous English: Ken occasionally spits this out.
  • Gravity Master: One of the unnamed hunters appears to have this as her ability.
  • Group Picture Ending: See Food End.
  • Hair Color Spoiler: Shirayuki and Kuroyuki both have Purple Eyes, a fact that is not a coincidence (though it may be easy to overlook, given that Kuroyuki rarely appears in colour pages).
  • Handicapped Badass:
    • Souichi, who's missing a right arm—but honestly, he doesn't even need it.
    • Ken's on the verge of death, but can still put up a good fight.
    • Souji becomes one by the final battle, rendered blind as his price for lending Souichi his power.
    • Notably, with the exception of Souji (who becomes this willingly), this is taken seriously, rather than used purely for Rule of Cool. Both Ken and Souichi believe themselves to be burdens thanks to their physical issues, despite both being quite Badass. Until, with Akane's help, Ken recovers and Souichi becomes an Empowered Badass Normal.
  • Healing Factor: Shirayuki has one, as does Kuroyuki, what with them being immortal.
  • Heel-Face Turn: Fujimaru and Ken both pull one at different times, for different reasons.
    • Fujimaru is a case of Defector from Decadence, in that he had no intention of becoming Takeru's ally—he just didn't want to be Kuroyuki's slave anymore.
    • Ken, while normally content with just taking orders, betrays the government to save Fujimaru's life.
  • Heroic RROD: Every tekigousha is in danger of this if they overuse their ability. Notable cases include:
    • Ken, who'll die soon from this. As far as the government's concerned, it's an 'endurance test'.
    • Souichi, who had this happen to him in the past after being stuck in a 'killing game' for half a year.
    • Fujimaru suffers one in the final battle, becoming a bit of an Ill Boy in the epilogue as he apparently has frequent headaches.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Fujimaru and Ken, what with having known each other for several years by now.
  • Hit Me, Dammit!: In a subversion of My Fist Forgives You, Fujimaru tells Makoto to make good on his promise to punch Fujimaru, now that everything's over. However, Makoto's aware of how hard Fujimaru's working to atone and so forgives him without it.
  • Hitchhiker Heroes: How Takeru collects his allies, starting with Shirayuki and Fujimaru (sort of), whom he begins the journey with, then Souichi & Souji, then Fujimaru for good, then Ken, and then Akane.
  • Hot-Blooded: Pun unintended, Takeru. According to him, Izumi also used to be this.
  • Human Shield: A variation. Souichi has Shirayuki stay behind him so that she'd be in the line of fire if the soldiers shot at him.
  • Human Weapon: The tekigousha are this for the government.
  • I Owe You My Life:
    • Why Uzuki's so loyal towards Kuroyuki—the woman saved her life. Or at least that's what Uzuki believes.
    • Similarly, Amagiya's Undying Loyalty towards Shirayuki comes from the fact that he was actually incompatible and should've been disposed of, had Shirayuki not saved him.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Justified, since, as typically noted by characters in the situation, the heroes tend to be moving too quickly/too far away to shoot at accurately (and Ken and Takeru have a few close calls in Ch. 25). Still, Ken doesn't seem to have as much of a problem as the mooks do.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: All of the heroes, by virtue of the varying ages, but most prominently Fujimaru and Ken.
  • Irony: At one point, Takeru tells Souichi that if his older brother was suffering on his behalf, he'd never forgive himself, in an attempt to get Souichi to see things from Souji's point of view. About that, Takeru...
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold:
    • Fujimaru, who's an outright male Tsundere at times.
    • Souichi, being one of the more callous and pragmatic members of the party.
  • Kick the Dog: Kuroyuki does this repeatedly. Amagiya gets in a few moments too.
  • Kill It with Fire: One of Takeru's usual methods. Notably, it's how he kills Kuroyuki—by repeatedly setting her on fire, her Grim Rock eventually exhausts itself and she burns to death.
  • Kirk Summation: Takeru pulls one off with Fujimaru, who attempts to do a Shut Up, Kirk!, but doesn't quite succeed.
  • Kotatsu: One illustration at the back of Vol. 4 shows the heroes sitting around/sleeping underneath one.
  • La Résistance: The heroes are essentially this.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: Takeru has no memories of the last two years. Uzuki's also had her memories rewritten, courtesy of the same tekigousha who erased Takeru's.
  • The Last Dance: Why Souichi's out to take down the government—if he's going to die soon, then he at least wants to take revenge for what they put him and Souji through.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: The cover of the third volume spoils the fact that Ken gets better.
  • Let no Crisis Go to Waste: The city government sure didn't waste any time in setting up a dictatorship after meteors hit Tokyo. Subverted in that it turns out that they were the ones who caused said fall of meteors in the first place, so.
  • Let Them Die Happy: Takeru pretends to think highly of Kuroyuki so that Uzuki can die believing that she was right in everything.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Considering the characters don't exactly have anywhere to get a spare change of clothes most of the time, it's understandable. They change when it's reasonable to, however, and their outfits do tend to change slightly over time, usually through Clothing Damage.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: Fujimaru, Akane, and Haruyama.
  • Made of Iron: The heroes. It comes with being Determinators.
  • Magic A Is Magic A: Tekigousha abilities follow certain rules: namely, that overuse has bad consequences. When this isn't the case, it's a major thing. Taking advantage of this is how the heroes defeat Kuroyuki.
  • Magic Meteor: The original Grim Rock appears to be a meteorite fragment.
  • Make It Look Like an Accident: Before the finale, the heroes deal some damage to Shinjuku by killing employees and framing the kills as suicide.
  • Making a Splash: The ability of one of the unnamed hunters, who wields to it dangerous levels: forcefully ripping the water out of Souichi's body and suffocating Takeru from the inside.
  • Mass "Oh, Crap!": Kuroyuki bombing Shibuya is an understandable cause for concern among those presently in Shibuya: i.e. the heroes and the Ward Chiefs.
  • Meaningful Echo: When the others protest Akane going off on his own to scout in the finale, he repeats what Takeru once said when they first met:
    "If there's a chance, then we should go for it. Not doing anything at all would be the worst."
  • Mirror Boss: Any attacks inflicted upon Kuroyuki will be dealt to the assailant. Between this and her Healing Factor, this understandably makes her a very difficult opponent.
  • Mood Dissonance: See the page picture. You have Takeru and Shirayuki, smiling happily... surrounded by the wreckage of what was once Tokyo.
  • Mook Horror Show: The finale starts off with this.
  • Morality Kitchen Sink: On one end, Kuroyuki's about as despicable as you get. Otherwise, as mentioned above, every other antagonist tends to be an Anti-Villain, and on the good guys' part, there's a mix of (relatively) clean heroes and those of the Anti-Hero variety.
  • Morton's Fork: The Ushio brothers' dilemma, particularly on Souichi's part. If he lets Souji fight, then Souji will die that much sooner from use of his powers. If he doesn't, then Souji will become further of an emotional wreck.
  • Mundane Luxury: As it's a Crapsack World where the government monopolizes the resources, getting a potato for Makoto and his ill mother is all Takeru can manage, and even then, it's probably pretty valuable as he had to trade away his boots for it.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong:
    • Fujimaru appears to be a case of this at first, before it's quickly subverted, as he's only serving Kuroyuki because he believes that defying her is fruitless.
    • Ken, on the other hand, plays it straight in that he simply believes in doing what a soldier should: take orders. Friendship wins over duty in the end, though.
  • Next Sunday A.D.: The exact year is smudged out, but given that Takeru is sixteen and was born in what looks to be 1998 or 1999, the series (which began serializing in 2012) takes place in around 2015.
  • Never Found the Body: Kuroyuki is Dangerously Genre Savvy enough to know that since the heroes' corpses weren't found after she bombed Shibuya, they aren't dead.
  • Nice Guy: Most of the (non-antagonist) cast, actually. All of the heroes aside from Souichi and Fujimaru are friendly and affable people, which is probably why they all get along quite well, as well as numerous civilian characters (e.g. Makoto, Megumi).
  • Not So Different: Done subtly, but Takeru is shown to be surprised when he hears that Fujimaru is known for his defiant attitude, having assumed him to be an Extreme Doormat for the government up until that point.
  • Not So Stoic: Barring Kuroyuki and Mogami, just about every stoic character gets hit with this at some point.
  • One-Man Army: A number of characters could probably count, but Souichi is one of the most notable.
  • One Person, One Power: Typically the case. Kuroyuki is one of the few exceptions.
  • Outside-Context Villain: The tekigousha, to the civilians. Fujimaru, however, soon explains to Takeru and Makoto how they came to be.
  • Parental Abandonment: If they don't fall under Abusive Parents above, there's a good chance that the character's parents are dead or never mentioned (though, given the situation, still presumably dead).
  • Personality Powers: In a more discreet manner. The most obvious is Takeru, who got heat-based powers, making him literally Hot-Blooded; the soldier Ken got firearms-related powers (and similarly, the soldier-like in attitude Ryuuichi received the same ability); the Ushio brothers who trained in swordsmanship as indicated by the omakes got blade-related powers; the anti-social and logical Fujimaru became connected with machinery.
  • P.O.V. Boy, Poster Girl: Though Takeru's always clearly The Hero, Shirayuki's the one whose circumstances the story revolves around and who gets the honour of being on the back of every volume cover—except for final one, where she gets to be on the front. She is the 'Snow White' of the story, after all.
  • Power Degeneration: All tekigousha seem to be at risk of this to some degree, but the most notable examples are Ken, Souichi, and Souji.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The heroes? A mostly normal teenager who barely has any idea what's going on, two ex-Ward Chiefs (though one of them is a hardened soldier, at least), two dying thieves, and a doctor who's, similarly, an otherwise ordinary citizen. They just happen to be the only ones brave/crazy/suicidal enough to take on the government.
  • Rapid Aging: Souji. On the other end, Souichi is rapidly de-aging.
  • Redemption Equals Affliction: While the redemption happens early on and the affliction at the end, Fujimaru using his full power as he does in the final battle was largely him trying to atone and his De-power the price for that.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Haruyama and Mogami, who die shortly after pulling a Heel-Face Turn.
  • Scenery Gorn: Case in point: the page picture. Shinjuku's the only place that isn't now a desolate landscape.
  • Sinister Surveillance: In Hachiouji, courtesy of Fujimaru's work.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Given that it's a series that's about keeping your spirits up no matter what, it shouldn't be a surprise that it falls on the idealistic end of things.
  • The Stoic: Ken, Souichi, and Izumi, though all have their Not So Stoic moments, usually regarding those they care about.
  • Storming the Castle: Most of the series is the heroes making their way to Shinjuku precisely so they can do this.
  • Story Arc: The series can be divided into five arcs, with brief stories in between: the recruiting-Fujimaru / Awakening arc, the recruiting-the-Ushio-brothers-and-Ken / Guide arc, the recruiting-Akane / Desperation arc, the Faith arc, and the finale / D-Day arc.
  • Super Soldier: The soldier tekigousha. Specifically, Ken, the Imperial Guard, and the hunter squad.
  • Tainted Veins: Common when using one's abilities.
  • The Team:
    • Being The Hero, Takeru is The Leader, as well as The Heart. Though no one would look to him for a strategy, he tends to be the one taking charge and whose lead the others follow.
    • While Fujimaru could also fit the role, Souichi is The Lancer in the first half of the series, typically being the one fighting alongside Takeru but generally being far more down-to-earth and strategic than him. Eventually, he joins Ken and Souji as The Big Guy.
    • Fujimaru, being the Gadgeteer Genius and Mr. Exposition of the group, is the The Smart Guy. Aside from technical and intelligence support, he's also the group's primary driver/pilot.
    • Both Ken and Souji are The Big Guy, with their main roles being to provide muscle support.
    • Akane is The Medic, being the Non-Action Guy who patches up the heroes.
  • Teens Are Short: Or rather, adults are really tall. It's probably safe to assume that while teenagers like Takeru and Tama actually are short, the others are average; it's just that any major adult (Souichi aside) is abnormally tall, as Akane and Izumi are canonly acknowledged as huge and Akane calls Souji Beanpole-kun for a reason, with every other adult being around their height as well.
  • Tempting Fate: The Tachikawa base figures that they don't really need to check their cameras too strictly. Meanwhile, the heroes have Fujimaru...
  • There Are No Therapists: Probably literally: practicing medicine and related matters have presumably been banned in the 'new' Tokyo. In any case, people being as broken as possible works in Kuroyuki's favour.
  • Think Happy Thoughts: This line of thinking seems to be why Takeru is The Pollyanna, even in a Crapsack World—to him, if you can keep smiling, then you can keep coping.
  • To Absent Friends: Implied in one of the post-series omakes. Takeru, Shirayuki, and Tama are at what appears to be graves for Haruyama, Mogami, and Uzuki.
  • Tokyo Is the Center of the Universe: Though given that Kuroyuki's the governor of Tokyo, it only stands to reason that she'd choose to wreck her city to take over.
  • Took a Level in Badass:
    • Ken, who was apparently weak and a crybaby as a child. That said, he knew the weak couldn't survive, and so... well, look at him now.
    • Takeru, due to a case of How Do I Shot Web? at first, continuously takes these.
    • Souji gets an upgrade about halfway through the series, symbolizing his resolve to get serious.
  • Token Romance: Averted. Despite the fairy tale that the series is based off of (and consequently getting mislabeled as part of the romance genre often), the series has next to no romance, let alone among the main characters.
  • Trapped In Villainy: Most of the villains. Kuroyuki's not the sort of person who believes in letting her subordinates quit.
  • True Companions: Need it be said? The heroes are practically a pseudo-family, given the illustrations of them of having meals together, with the epilogue confirming that this does indeed happen and the post-series omakes showing that they continue to spend all their time together afterwards.
  • Undying Loyalty: Uzuki towards Kuroyuki, and Amagiya towards Shirayuki.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: A fair number of tekigousha abilities involve shapeshifting to some degree.
  • Was Once a Man: The experimental failures turned monsters, kept in Shibuya.
  • Wham Episode: Chapter 25. Shirayuki gets kidnapped back from the heroes.
  • Wham Line: Fujimaru gives one to Takeru early on, setting the tone for the rest of the series:
    Fujimaru: "Shakudou... what have you heard about the tekigousha? Ha... that it's like being a pet dog, living the life of luxury...? It's actually more like... being a prisoner."
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: The fate of Makoto's father is never mentioned, though it's probably safe to presume he's dead.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?: Averted. While Takeru and co. go about slaughtering soldiers, there are subtle acknowledgments—mainly from Takeru—that killing people in the name of their (however heroic) goals isn't exactly the epitome of morality. At one point, after Takeru shoots down a helicopter, there's even a shot of a burning family photo of one of the soldiers that was just killed.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: A topic brought up while in Shibuya. Haruyama, Mogami, and Tama very much see the monsters still as people, making it one of their greatest redeeming traits (not that they especially needed it). On the heroes' end, only Takeru truly sympathizes with the monsters as well.
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: Aside from the actual epilogue itself, the final volume includes omakes showing the characters' near future, mostly showing happy scenes and an attempt to return to a vaguely normal life.
  • Whole Episode Flashback: Izumi gets a chapter explaining his circumstances, and Kuroyuki gets part of one in the finale showing her Start of Darkness.
  • Wig, Dress, Accent: Barring Ken and Shirayuki, who couldn't be disguised and so had to be hid entirely, this is how the heroes get by when entering Suginami. Possibly veers into Paper-Thin Disguise, considering that their disguises were basic at best, due to a lack of supplies, and that the government workers are supposed to be searching for them. That said, it can be justified in that the inspection guard was more focused on verifying their (false) names against the (equally false) entries in the database of who was permitted to pass through, rather than on their faces.note 
  • Would Hurt a Child: The government officials would. Hitting a beggar child, unsurprisingly, is the major thing that sets off Takeru's Berserk Button in Hachiouji.
  • A World Half Full: Takeru would have people believe this, and in the end, he's right.
  • World of Badass: Due to most characters being tekigousha, though even then, there's still a fair amount of characters who were soldiers, martial artists, trained in swordsmanship, etc. On the non-action side of things, Fujimaru still gets to shine through his hacking skills and driving, and Akane's a Badass Pacifist.
  • Wrong Context Magic: Shirayuki and Akane are aversions to Magic A Is Magic A above, due to having inherited their abilities.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Two cases:
    • Takeru gives a more implied version of this to Fujimaru, suggesting that Fujimaru deserves better than living with the abuse he deals with and that he's not beyond redemption, despite what Amagiya says (and what Fujimaru himself believes).
    • Fujimaru gives a straighter version to Ken, who believes himself to be somewhat of a burden due to being half-dead. Fujimaru makes it clear that he doesn't think of Ken as one.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Souji and Souichi, both of whom have blue hair, and Akane, Haruyama, and Tama with pink hair.
  • You Have 48 Hours: A villainous version. Kuroyuki gives her subordinates three days to capture and/or kill the heroes, with three out of five arcs taking place during those three days. Once they're up, she takes matter into her own hands and bombs Shibuya.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Kuroyuki, unsurprisingly, has no qualms about dropping this on people.
  • Young and in Charge: Fujimaru, in the beginning: sixteen years old and Ward Chief of Hachiouji. Similarly, Tama, who's Ward Chief of Shibuya at fourteen.
  • Your Days Are Numbered:
    • Using his power has gradually been killing Ken—by the present, he doesn't have long left to live. Thanks to Akane, he gets better, though it's noted that the cycle will just repeat itself all over again.
    • As Souichi is de-aging and Souji is rapidly aging, they know that they'll both die, sooner or later.