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Playing With: Gender-Equal Ensemble
Basic Trope: When the main group of characters is an even number and there is an equal number of females to males.
  • Straight: Jane, Bobby, Timothy and Allison are four friends who go on adventures.
  • Exaggerated:
    • The group refuses to invite other kids to go on adventures with them, lest the gender ratio becomes unbalanced.
    • Jane, Bobby, Timothy, Allison and Alex are five friends who go on adventures. Alex was only allowed to join because s/he is a hermaphrodite.
    • Not only is the main cast balanced, but so is the large supporting cast. The cast as a whole consists of 100 females and 100 males.
  • Downplayed:
    • Jane, Bobby, and Timothy are three friends who go on adventures who are occasionally joined by Allison.
    • Jane, Bobby, Timothy, and Allison are occasionally joined by a fifth friend: Helen.
    • The group is very large and is almost, but not quite, balanced - e.g. there are 20 males and 21 females.
  • Justified:
  • Inverted: Everyone in the group is the same gender.
  • Subverted:
    • Timothy was actually Tina who was pretending to be a boy.
    • Four Plus One; after we've met the four kids, we are introduced to Jane's dog, Fred, who is the Team Pet.
    • Bobby drops out of the group.
  • Double Subverted:
    • But, Allison turns out to be Allen who was cross-dressing as a girl.
    • The Team Pet brings in a girlfriend: Violet the cat.
    • Bobby rejoins the group.
    • Allison brings in another friend, Greg, to replace Bobby.
  • Parodied:
  • Zig Zagged:
    • Jane, Bobby, Timothy, and Allison are four friends. They are occasionally joined by two more friends: Helen and Terrance. Timothy turns out to be a girl, Tina, but Allison turns out to be a boy, Allen. They adopt a Team Pet, Fred, but are then forced to adopt Fred's girlfriend, Violet. Bobby moves away, but is replaced by Greg. When Bobby moves back to Troperville three years later, he rejoins the group. He then brings in his sister Melody (who becomes the Tagalong Kid) so Greg won't get kicked out. Finally, five hermaphrodites join: Alex, Kelly, Jody, Dylan, and Robin.
    • The characters fall in love with each other, forming a Love Dodecahedron. When Terrance falls in love with Greg, no one is weirded out.
    • Several cast members change genders on a regular basis, making the gender-ratio fluctuate wildly because of it.
  • Averted:
    • The group is made up of three boys and a girl or three girls and a boy.
    • The group has an odd number of members.
  • Enforced: "This show has to appeal to both gender demographics, so make the main group of friends have the same number of boys and girls."
  • Lampshaded: "Those two boys and two girls are the best of friends."
  • Invoked:
    • The group decides not to allow any new members unless they recruit a new member of the opposite gender, so that neither gender gains dominance.
    • Jane, Bobby, Timothy, Allison, and Greg are five friends. Greg leaves the group (or begs a female friend to join) because he thinks it's unfair that there are three boys and only two girls.
  • Exploited: A villain in a Spy Catsuit tries to sneak onto the team, knowing that they are short one male or one female.
  • Defied:
    • One of the members brings in a new member of their own gender, so that their gender may gain dominance over the other.
    • One of the members brings in a new member of the opposite gender, possibly a Love Interest or a sibling.
    • The Leader insists on forming an odd-numbered group, such as a Power Trio or a Five-Man Band.
  • Discussed: "The pefect adventuring party always seems to consist of two guys, two girls, and a dog.
  • Conversed: "It seems that in every show about Kid Heroes, the group consists of two boys and two girls."
  • Implied: There are Loads and Loads of Characters who come and go, but if you pay attention, you'll notice that both the central cast and the supporting cast consist of the same number of females as males.
  • Plotted A Good Waste: The producers make certain that the cast is a Gender-Equal Ensemble, so as to appeal to both male and female audiences.
  • Played for Laughs:
    • The Leader decides to assemble a large group divided into subgroups, and spends a ridiculous amount of time arranging them so that each subgroup consists of the same number of males as females.
    • The other groups of friends in Troperville are either all male or all female. Because Bobby, Jane, Timothy, and Allison are a mixed-gender ensemble, other kids call them "weirdos".
  • Played for Drama: Two balanced groups of friends join together. Unfortunately, not everyone from group A gets along with group B, and they end up killing each other.
  • Deconstructed: The ensemble's members start to drift apart.
  • Reconstructed: Each character founds his/her own Gender-Equal Ensemble.
  • Unparodied: First, the audience is told that Bobby, Timothy, and Fred are girls, while Allison, Jane, and Violet are boys. However, it turns out that they were lying about their names to confuse other children and discourage them from joining the group.

Back to Gender-Equal Ensemble

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