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Age-Down Romance (needs more examples)

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When a character falls in love with another character after being aged-down. May be Squicky because of the implications.

This work is a proposed Trope, Tropers can vote and offer feedback in the comments section below.
Proposed By:
JTTWlover on Dec 13th 2018 at 11:38:11 AM
Last Edited By:
JTTWlover on 23 hours ago
Name Space: Main
Page Type: trope

Wow! You have been de-aged! Isn't that cool? Now you can do the things younger people do... why does that kid look so attractive?

This trope is when after a Fountain of Youth (or Overnight Age-Up ) characters find another characters of his/her newest age attractive and/or falls in love with them or vice-versa. The effects may or not may persist when the character is reversed to his/her real age.

It often occurs in fanfic, especially Peggy Sue fics, often with The Mind Is A Play Thing Of The Body invoked to try and handwave away any squick. How successful that is is up to the reader.

It’s a Subtrope of Age-Gap Romance.


Examples

Anime and Manga

  • In ERASED, 29-year-old Satoru's consciousness is transferred into his 11-year-old self so that he can rescue his classmate Kayo from a grisly murder. Satoru finds himself developing a crush on her, and they have some Puppy Love moments of romantic tension, but the relationship is never explicit.

Comic Books

  • Runaways has done a few variations on this trope:
    • In "Dead-End Kids", a series of circumstances cause the team to be sent back in time to 1907, where Victor falls in love with a local girl, Lillie. It's ultimately revealed that the whole sequence of events was set in motion by Lillie's older self, who remembered Victor as the love of her life and thus hoped that he would be convinced to bring her younger self into the present.
    • Inverted in Rainbow Rowell's Runaways; Gert is brought forward two years in time in order to prevent her death at the hands of Geoffrey Wilder. Since her boyfriend Chase was already four years older than her when she died, he's now much too old for her.
    • In the "Best Friends Forever" arc, Molly's new friend Abigail is a middle-aged woman who is under a spell that allows her to remain 13 forever. Having grown tired of watching everyone she loves outgrow her, she tries to convince 13-year-old Molly to take the same deal so that they can be together forever. Whether her interest in Molly is platonic or not is not clear.

Fanfiction

  • In the Harry Potter fanfiction A Battle of Subtlety and Manipulation, Narcissa Malfoy and Bellatrix Lestrange are automatically divorced from their husbands when each husband was caught in the act of casting "Avada Kedavra" as a Death Eater and thrown in Azkaban. From there, it was revealed that the women born to the Black family have just enough trace amount of Metamorphmagus talent to slow down their aging but Narcissa and Bellatrix had both previously drank a potion that forced them to age at the same rate as everyone else. After taking the antidote to that potion, they regain an appearance of youth akin to Harry Potter for easier shipping with him.

Literature

  • The Dresden Files: After the nearly 300-year-old Captain Luccio has her body swapped with a 25-year-old's, she briefly dates Harry (30s).
  • In the sixth Artemis Fowl book, a complication during Time Travel changes the two protagonists' ages—one from a young teen to a young adult; one from an adult to a teen—allowing them to realize they have feelings for each other.

Video Games

  • In The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, the scientist Purah is an old woman in a little girl's body after experimenting with de-aging runes. According to the notes she took as she was growing younger, she developed a crush on her lab assistant while she was a teenager.

Western Animation

  • In Adventure Time, Finn has long nurtured an unrequited crush on Princess Bubblegum, who as a 19-year-old (who happens to be Really 700 Years Old) is too old to be dating a thirteen-year-old. In the episode "Too Old", PB is aged down to Finn's age and their romance temporarily blossoms.
  • Archie's Weird Mysteries: When all the town's adults are turned back into teenagers (both physically and mentally), the now sixteen Miss Grundy hits on Archie and Reggie. Both are repulsed by the idea, although Reggie starts to warm up to it whilst the two are slow dancing together, right before the affects wear off and she returns to her proper age with no memory of what happened leaving him to flounder for an explanation.

Feedback: 69 replies

Dec 13th 2018 at 12:02:32 PM

Alright, seeing as this was just made a few minutes ago you've still got some time to fix it before the bombs come in. The problems are the lack of a laconic (you NEED a laconic, or it won't even let you edit), a bare-bones description, and no examples.

Dec 13th 2018 at 12:47:48 PM

Okay how do I put the laconic? I forgot to put it.

Dec 13th 2018 at 12:49:28 PM

Use the little gray circle in the top corner to edit.

Dec 13th 2018 at 1:07:42 PM

Also, examples. This could potentially be a trope but I can only think of one example off-hand so it might be Too Rare To Trope.

Dec 13th 2018 at 2:30:19 PM

They seem rather mixed, leaning towards no.

Also, a question. Would this be about "Adult is aged down to a child and begins a relationship with a child" or "Adult is aged down to a child and begins a relationship with an adult" because those are two different tropes.

Dec 13th 2018 at 2:35:30 PM

^ That's a good point.

Dec 13th 2018 at 11:40:42 PM

^^ The first one. Im sorry this is so bad, Ill fix it!

Dec 14th 2018 at 1:17:13 AM

^ So an aged-down adult dates a child, then? Related to Puppy Love?

Dec 15th 2018 at 5:52:17 AM

Seems like a legit concept to me, but needs work.

Western Animation

  • In Adventure Time, Finn has long nurtured an unrequited crush on Princess Bubblegum, who as a 19-year-old (who happens to be Really Seven Hundred Years Old) is too old to be dating a thirteen-year-old. In the episode "Too Old", PB is aged down to Finn's age and their romance temporarily blossoms.

Anime and Manga

  • In Erased, 29-year-old Satoru's consciousness is transferred into his 11-year-old self so that he can rescue his classmate Kayo from a grisly murder. Satoru finds himself developing a crush on her, and they have some Puppy Love moments of romantic tension, but the relationship is never explicit.

Dec 15th 2018 at 6:05:07 AM

In the Lou Ferrigno Hercules movie the sorceress Circe uses some of Herc's blood to de-age from a hag to an Amazonian beauty. Later on she looses her powers because she falls in love with Hercules.

Dec 15th 2018 at 6:22:30 AM

Would this trope also work in reverse - a character ages up and has a relationship with an older person? If so, there are a number of examples (Big, Poison Ivy in Gotham). If not, maybe this trope can be expanded to include any artificially-aged character romance.

Dec 15th 2018 at 6:42:32 AM

^^^ So Finn and PB did have a romance for a bit.

This idea was brought up in TLP a few weeks ago and I was going to make one, but the only example I could think of was Finn and Bonnibel. When I tried to look it up I couldn't find anything (though, in hindsight, I should have checked the Wiki) so I assumed I just imagined the two kissing when PB was temporarily 13.

Dec 16th 2018 at 9:35:27 AM

Fixed formatting. JTT Wlover, you seem to have some issues with grammar and formatting. I would recommend checking out Text Formatting Rules and perhaps TLP Guidelines as well.

Dec 17th 2018 at 12:02:38 AM

Comic Books

  • Runaways has done a few variations on this trope:
    • In "Dead-End Kids", a series of circumstances cause the team to be sent back in time to 1907, where Victor falls in love with a local girl, Lillie. It's ultimately revealed that the whole sequence of events was set in motion by Lillie's older self, who remembered Victor as the love of her life and thus hoped that he would be convinced to bring her younger self into the present.
    • Inverted in Rainbow Rowells Runaways; Gert is brought forward two years in time in order to prevent her death at the hands of Geoffrey Wilder. Since her boyfriend Chase was already four years older than her when she died, he's now much too old for her.
    • In the "Best Friends Forever" arc, Molly's new friend Abigail is a middle-aged woman who is under a spell that allows her to remain 13 forever. Having grown tired of watching everyone she loves outgrow her, she tries to convince 13-year-old Molly to take the same deal so that they can be together forever. Whether her interest in Molly is platonic or not is not clear.

Dec 17th 2018 at 1:07:43 AM

  • Capitalized the title so the proposal can be launched properly.
  • Examples section
    • Added a line separating the Description and Examples section.

Dec 17th 2018 at 10:53:52 AM

I don't know, I feel like limiting it to the "character ages down and falls for a kid" is just too specific. Why wouldn't an aged down character who falls for an adult count? Or an aged up character who falls for an adult or a kid count?

I guess what I'm asking is, is there any particular significance to the first version that makes it different and noteworthy from the other versions? What makes it a trope over everything else, or rather it's own separate trope?

Dec 18th 2018 at 2:15:15 AM

^ Hmmm I may put a Type 1, Type 2 thing later.

Dec 18th 2018 at 6:16:46 AM

^^ Simply because the draft maker didn't initially think about it. It's a thing that happens, quite a lot.

Dec 18th 2018 at 10:02:17 PM

This happened at the end of Clockstoppers; a scientist aged himself down as a result of an experiment, with one of the characters' teenage sister being now attracted to him.

Dec 25th 2018 at 8:48:55 PM

Added some missing wicks to the draft.

Jan 4th 2019 at 9:23:59 AM

  • The Dresden Files: After the nearly 300-year-old Captain Luccio has her body swapped with a 25-year-old's she briefly dates Harry (30s).

Jan 4th 2019 at 9:37:28 AM

It often occurs in fanfic, especially Peggy Sue fics, often with The Mind Is A Play Thing Of The Body invoked to try and handwave away any squick. How successful that is is up to the reader.

Jan 13th 2019 at 12:09:51 PM

You could try adding the examples that people have already provided.

Are you planning on broadening this to instances where a character is aged up?

Jan 13th 2019 at 12:13:31 PM

^ Okay, I forgot. ^ Ok.

Jan 13th 2019 at 1:26:59 PM

You could make an argument about Doctor Who with the Doctor and his relationship with Rose - but that would require regeneration to be considered a form of aging down, so might not be compatible.

Additionally, The Lazarus Experiment plays with this trope, as when the 76 year old Professor Lazarus ages down by 40 years, he breaks up with his partner, Sylvia Thaw, saying he won't waste another life with her and tries to seduce the younger Tish Jones, but is stopped by the Doctor and Martha

Jan 17th 2019 at 1:06:58 AM

  • Corrected spelling (Squiky).
  • Blue Linked TV Tropes page names.
  • Examples section
    • Namespaced work names. Warning: failure to do this will result in Red Links and can result in being suspended from editing.
    • Italicized work names as per How To Write An Example - Emphasis For Work Names.
    • Corrected punctuation (added commas).

Jan 18th 2019 at 3:28:18 PM

Jan 23rd 2019 at 1:38:52 PM

I recently read a Harry Potter fanfiction that had examples of this, let me see if I can find it again...

Jan 23rd 2019 at 3:30:39 PM

Found it!

  • In the Harry Potter fanfiction A Battle of Subtlety and Manipulation, Narcissa Malfoy and Bellatrix Lestrange are automatically divorced from their husbands when each husband was caught in the act of casting "Avada Kedavra" as a Death Eater and thrown in Azkaban. From there, it was revealed that the women born to the Black family have just enough trace amount of Metamorphmagus talent to slow down their aging but Narcissa and Bellatrix had both previously drank a potion that forced them to age at the same rate as everyone else. After taking the antidote to that potion, they regain an appearance of youth akin to Harry Potter for easier shipping with him.

Jan 25th 2019 at 1:49:17 AM

bump again (sorry for not adding, need better examples (sorry))

Jan 25th 2019 at 6:29:26 AM

Could you explain what is wrong with the examples, or why they don't count?

Jan 25th 2019 at 1:26:18 PM

Im sorry, only wanted more examples. Plz forgive me.

Jan 26th 2019 at 11:19:56 AM

I noticed some of the formatting of my suggested example was lost when you copypasted it to the draft. If you want to preserve the markup, click the gray circle with the three white dots on the comment — it'll open up a menu — then click the "View Markup" option.

Jan 27th 2019 at 3:33:32 PM

In The Lord Of The Rings, Aragorn is possibly in his late twenties or early thirties when he meets the half-elven Arwen for the first time. According to Tolkein's meticulously worked-out chronology, the immortal Arwen is 2,777 years old. Give or take a decade. Of course, she looks as if she is of a similar age...

Jan 28th 2019 at 7:14:37 AM

^ What/who are you referring to?

Jan 30th 2019 at 8:13:02 AM

Archies Weird Mysteries: When all the town's adults are turned back into teenagers (both physically and mentally), the now sixteen Miss Grundy hits on Archie and Reggie. Both are repulsed by the idea, although Reggie starts to warm up to it whilst the two are slow dancing together, right before the affects wear off and she returns to her proper age with no memory of what happened leaving him to flounder for an explanation.

Feb 1st 2019 at 2:07:37 PM

^ You know, editing a draft also bumps it. Adding peoples examples from the comments to the draft will give it just as much attention, and contributes more.

Feb 5th 2019 at 2:22:42 PM

In The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, the scientist Purah is an old woman in a little girl's body after experimenting with de-aging runes. According to the notes she took as she was growing younger, she developed a crush on her lab assistant while she was a teenager.

Feb 5th 2019 at 8:13:30 PM

I don't think the draft maker is updating it...

Feb 5th 2019 at 10:54:28 PM

^ That was a bit mean. I live in a different time zone just to you know.

Feb 11th 2019 at 8:10:40 AM

Literature

  • In the sixth Artemis Fowl book, a complication during Time Travel changes the two protagonists' ages—one from a young teen to a young adult; one from an adult to a teen—allowing them to realize they have feelings for each other.

Feb 11th 2019 at 9:34:53 AM

I think you should make this a subtrope of Age Gap Romance.

Feb 11th 2019 at 11:37:09 AM

^ Thanks! Any Indexes to put it in?

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