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Visual Novel: My Sweet Bodyguard
Left to right: Sora, Katsuragi, Mizuki, Kaiji, and Subaru

My Sweet Bodyguard is a Romance Game Visual Novel by Voltage Inc for iOS and Android devices. An expanded Free To Play version has also been released for the GREE social networking service, and a Westernized adaptation has been released by Voltage Entertainment USA under the title To Love and Protect.

The protagonist is a university student who grew up believing that her father died when she was an infant, only to suddenly learn that not only is he alive, he's the Prime Minister of Japan. Her father is eager to have a real paternal relationship with her, but his position presents complications: he is under threat from political extremists who have somehow found out that the protagonist is his daughter, and they're entirely willing to use her to get to him.

To protect his daughter, Prime Minister Hiraizumi assigns a member of his security detail to be the protagonist's full-time bodyguard. She has to choose which of five attractive men will be at her side 24/7 to protect her from danger, and it's not hard to guess where things go from there.

My Sweet Bodyguard contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Adorkable: None moreso than Daichi Katsuragi, with his gleefully nerdy interest in electronic appliances and his tendency to be easily flustered by the heroine.
  • All-Loving Hero: The protagonist cares about everyone, even extending compassion and forgiveness to the people who are out to get her if there's any kind of sympathetic reason to be found behind their villainous behavior. Several of the guys comment on how kind she is to everyone; it's usually one of the reasons they fall for her, but at the same time they worry that her selflessness also makes her vulnerable to being taken advantage of or hurt.
  • Badass Crew: The bodyguards.
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: Katsuragi, Ishigami, and Goto.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Ishigami and Kate look like they're heading this way in Katsuragi's sequel, with people grinning about it all the way. Ultimately not the case, however; Kate is married, and Ishigami has a thing for the protagonist. They really are just opinionated, confrontational people voicing their differences.
  • Bodyguard Crush/Rescue Romance: Inevitably, given that it's pretty much the point of the game. Kosugi Lampshades the hell out of it on Katsuragi's route, addressing him as "Kevin".
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Aside from Katsuragi, the security team are a pretty odd bunch, Sora and Mizuki especially. Ishigami dryly dubs them the Party Police.
  • The Charmer: Sora.
  • Chekhov's Gun: In Katsuragi's sequel, after Kate takes a bullet for Ishigami she reveals that she's wearing a bulletproof vest. Later in the route, the trope is subverted when she repeats the performance to protect the protagonist - her vest does her no good whatsoever when Kate catches the bullet in the neck. However, it somehow misses anything immediately vital and she makes a full recovery.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: Kaiji and the protagonist were friends as children, and he pretty obviously still has a crush on her and is prone to getting jealous of the other bodyguards if one of them is assigned to her instead of him. Whether he's unlucky or victorious depends on whether or not you're playing his route.
  • CIA Evil, FBI Good: In Katsuragi's sequel, FBI agent Kate is a heroic ally of the main characters, while the assistant director of the CIA turns out to be involved in terrorist activities around the world.
  • Chocolate of Romance: Featured prominently in the "St. Valentine's Day" side story.
  • Christmas Episode: The "Merry Christmas" side story.
  • Comfort Food: On Goto's route, after the protagonist thinks that Goto has rejected her, she asks Subaru if they can get something to eat. Subaru kindly promises to make her anything she wants, including dessert.
  • Comic Book Fantasy Casting: In To Love & Protect, Ellis (Sora) looks suspiciously like Colin Farrell, President Robertson (Hiraizumi) looks like Aaron Eckhart, and Albert (Momota) appears to have been modeled after Bill Murray.
  • Continuity Nod: At the beginning of the New Year's side story, the protagonist and her bodyguards reminisce about the events of the past year, making a whole string of nods to most of the game's previous side stories.
  • Death Seeker: How Goto ended up becoming a detective and joining the Public Safety division. Ishigami, seeing that Goto didn't seem to care if he died, told him he could at least die in the service of his country.
  • Declaration of Protection: The entire security team is responsible for protecting the protagonist, but her bodyguard of choice invariably makes a personal promise to protect her once he's fallen for her.
  • Disguised in Drag: Sora, constantly, to the point that he's a little uncomfortable with having it pointed out to him what a cute girl he makes.
  • Dub Name Change: In To Love and Protect, Subaru, Sora, Kaiji, Mizuki, and Daichi are renamed Edgar, Ellis, Felix, Maxwell, and Chadwick, as part of the change of the setting from Japan to the US. Other characters' names are likewise changed.
  • Everyone Can See It: Kaiji's crush on the protagonist is obvious to anyone with two eyes, much to the amusement of his colleagues.
  • Face Doodling: In Katsuragi's route of the "A New Year" side story, a New Year's Day game of badminton between Katsuragi and Ishigami gets considerably more heated after Superintendent Momota suggests drawing on the face of the loser. Several matches later, both men have faces covered in ink.
  • Fair Cop: All of the love interests are officers with the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Mizuki loves all animals, and the feeling has so far been 100% mutual.
  • FBI Agent: Kate Turner, a classmate and ex-girlfriend of Katsuragi's from his time studying in the US, is now an agent of the FBI. She appears during Katsuragi's sequel to investigate a possible terrorist attack on the American representatives who are there to negotiate a deal with the Japanese.
  • Genki Girl: All three of Kaiji's sisters. Since they do everything together, the energy gets... concentrated. Anyone meeting them for the first time tends to come away from the experience a little shellshocked, and Kaiji's friends speculate that they're the reason he professes to hate women (they're not; he has other reasons.)
  • Groupie Brigade: Mizuki was a famous singer before switching careers, and his fans are still out there. This occasionally leads to situations where the bodyguard draws more attention than his client.
  • Honey Trap: The trope is mentioned by name in Katsuragi's route of the Shanghai side story when they discover that a Japanese diplomat was influenced into leaking sensitive information to the Chinese by a woman.
  • I Have No Son: Katsuragi was disowned by his family for his decision to go into law enforcement.
  • I Have Your Wife: The intention of pretty much every antagonist in every route is to kidnap the protagonist in order to use her as leverage against her father. In some routes they succeed as far as kidnapping her, but of course she is always rescued by her chosen bodyguard.
  • It's Not You, It's My Enemies:
    • Ishigami's justification for distancing himself from the protagonist on his route.
    • Goto does the same on his own route when an investigation causes him to become a target for a gang of drug-runners.
  • It's Personal: Disgraced mercenary Mariko eventually begins targeting the protagonist specifically to get revenge on the bodyguards for crossing her. What better way to make them suffer after all, than to have their princess in harm's way because they're her protectors?
  • I Want Grandkids: The protagonist's father occasionally mentions wanting grandchildren in some of Katsuragi's additional content. Not so much in any of the other guys' epilogues and sequels, amusingly enough.
  • Jurisdiction Friction: In Katsuragi's sequel, Ishigami comes into conflict with Kate Turner over which of their departments, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police or the FBI, has greater claim to jurisdiction over the case at hand. Katsuragi has to mediate and convince them to work together rather than at cross-purposes.
  • Kindhearted Cat Lover: Seiji Goto. In the GREE version of his route, he and the protagonist rescue an injured cat from the road which he adopts and names Beach Ball ("Tama," meaning "ball," in the original Japanese).
  • Kinky Cuffs: Subaru occasionally gets adventurous with his handcuffs. He doesn't always remember to make sure he has the keys for them first.
  • Leave the Two Lovebirds Alone: Katsuragi chooses a particularly pragmatic method for getting Kaiji and the protagonist some alone time: he drinks his subordinates under the table.
    Katsuragi: They all drank too much and have crashed out in the cottage. So don't worry. Relax with [protagonist].
    Kaiji: Chief... I will follow you to my death!
  • Lonely Rich Kid: Subaru makes occasional references to his childhood which make it clear he fell into this trope. His father is wealthy and influential and the two of them are not close. In the "Merry Christmas" side story, Subaru admits that he'd never liked Christmas because as a child he always spent it at home with no company other than the hired help.
  • The Lost Lenore: Prior to the events of the VN, Goto was in love with a police detective named Kazuki. She died during an investigation, and her loss had a dramatic effect on Goto, who according to Subaru was much better-tempered and less closed off before Kazuki's death.
  • Master of Disguise: Sora, all of whose disguises are for some reason female.
  • Merging The Branches: The events of all routes and side stories have happened, and are canon in relation to each other. The only variable is where the protagonist's affections lie.note  So, for example, a Sora-centric side story featured the Marvellous Mariko as the villain, and it was noted that she bears a particular grudge toward Subaru and Kaiji for events that happened in their respective storylines.
  • Missing Mom: The protagonist's mother died young, and the protagonist was raised by her maternal grandmother.
  • More Expendable Than You:
    • Pretty much all of the guys consider themselves to be more expendable than the protagonist, which is not exactly unreasonable given that she's the Prime Minister's daughter and they are all either bodyguards or police officers. Goto in particular takes it to something of an extreme.
    • They also occasionally get into more-expendable-than-thou arguments with one another, somewhat less reasonably. In Katsuragi's sequel, every one of the bodyguards present is prepared to make the dangerous climb onto the roof of an out-of-control maglev train, only for Katsuragi to insist on doing it himself rather than put any other member of his team in danger.
    • Also from Katsuragi's sequel, there's Kaiji Taking the Bullet for Subaru, and Subaru's intensely distressed reaction.
  • No OSHA Compliance: In Katsuragi's sequel we have an out of control maglev train with three emergency brakes. Of those three, only one is manually operated — and can only be reached from the roof of a train car travelling at 360 mph.
  • Out of Order: Rather than standing alone as the main bodyguard routes do, Ishigami and Goto's routes are written to follow the Public Safety side story, which covers much of the initial process of the protagonist getting to know them. The English localization released both characters' individual routes well before the side story, creating some confusion among players over why the routes seemed to be picking up halfway through the story.
  • Pandaing To The Audience: Subaru's route of the Shanghai side story involves a lot of opportunities for the protagonist to coo over pandas.
  • Plausible Deniability: The Tokyo Metropolitan Police does not run undercover operations.
  • Posthumous Character: In Goto's route, his dead girlfriend Kazuki has a very strong influence over the story.
  • Race Lift: As part of the change of setting, everyone in To Love and Protect is American instead of Japanese.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Subaru, the badass elite bodyguard, is not only an excellent cook, he also enjoys and is good at sewing and is all-around better at and more interested in housework than the protagonist, whose housekeeping skills appall him.
    Protagonist: (Maybe he was a girl in a past life.)
  • Romantic Runner-Up:
    • Kaiji in Subaru's route.
    • Ishigami in characteristically low-key fashion in Katsuragi's sequel.
  • Same-Sex Triplets: Kaiji's older sisters are identical triplets, and are collectively known as The Three Flower Sisters.
  • Scary Shiny Glasses: Kosugi can produce this effect at will, much to the bafflement of everyone else.
  • Second Love: Goto and the protagonist, in Goto's route.
  • Shipper on Deck:
    • Subaru tends to be the protagonist's first and best wingman on every route other than his own, although his methods are sometimes offset by his need to give the guy in question a hard time. On Goto's route in particular he's an interesting intersection of this trope, Romantic Runner-Up, and I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: he seems to be at least somewhat romantically interested in the protagonist and envious that Goto has her affection, but in the choice between having a chance with her himself or seeing two of his favorite people happy with one another, he never hesitates in doing whatever he can to ensure that Goto and the protagonist end up together.
    • On a lighter note, Prime Minister Hiraizumi is very happy with the idea of having Katsuragi as a son-in-law.
    • On Ishigami's route, Goto and Kurosawa take it upon themselves to sort out their boss' love life, since he clearly isn't going to.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Speaks Fluent Animal: Mizuki, maybe. He's deliberately vague and inconsistent on the subject, and seems to find it amusing to keep people guessing.
  • Spin-Off: The Public Security department is now being featured in its own game, with Ishigami and Goto among the main cast.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Kosugi again. She's awesome like that.
  • Stoic Spectacles: Hideki Ishigami.
  • Taking the Bullet:
    • Kate does it twice in Katsuragi's sequel - once for Ishigami, who is not at all appreciative, and once for the protagonist. The first time, she catches it in her bulletproof vest. The second time, not so much, but she survives and recovers quickly from the injury.
    • Also in Katsuragi's sequel, Kaiji for Subaru — much to the latter's distress.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Goto carries a protective charm that previously belonged to Kazuki.
  • True Companions:
    • Kosugi and Midori are very close, supportive friends to the protagonist.
    • The bodyguards are a very close-knit group, which is not surprising considering what they do for a living. The protagonist is quickly adopted as their "princess". The Public Security officers (Ishigami, Goto and Kurosawa) tend to get dragged into the madness as well, with varying degrees of enthusiasm.
  • Tsundere: Subaru.
  • Valentine's Day Episodes: The "St. Valentine's Day" side story.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Subaru and Goto seem to be at each other's throats every time they meet, but they actually go way back, and never fail to back one another up when it's needed.
  • What Does She See in Him?: Much of the humour in Ishigami's main route and epilogue comes from the bodyguards (Sora and Subaru in particular) being utterly appalled that the "evil spy" has found favour with their precious client.
  • Why We Are Bummed Communism Fell: The plot of Katsuragi's sequel turns out to have been masterminded by the assistant director of the CIA. He explains his actions by claiming that after the Cold War ended, the CIA has been increasingly considered irrelevant. He's been manufacturing incidents of terrorism around the world to ensure that the agency would continue to receive funding and would not be disbanded.
  • Worth Living For: Falling for the protagonist gives Goto a reason to start caring about his own survival again.

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