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Characters / Strawberry Marshmallow

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Tropes (and other stuff) about the main girls of Barasui's Slice of Life comedy, Strawberry Marshmallow.

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    Nobue Ito 

Nobue Ito

Voiced by: Hitomi Nabatame (Japanese), Carol-Anne Day (English)

The oldest of the bunch, at 16 years old (20 in the anime). Elder sister to Chika, whom she loves to mess with when in need of money to feed her smoking habit.

  • Age Lift: Goes from 16 in the manga to 20 in the anime in order to keep from displaying underage smoking and drinking (in the animé, she at first claims to be 16, but then admits, that it was a lie).
  • Audience Surrogate: Arguably.
  • Berserk Button: Don't make jokes about her age or weight, or else she'll kick your ass, or at least scribble nonsense on your face.
  • Big Sister Instinct: Frequently exhibits a protective attitude towards Matsuri and Ana, hardly ever to her actual sister, however.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Black or grey are her usual clothing colours of choice.
  • Cool Big Sis
  • Cuteness Proximity: Her trigger is Ana and Matsuri.
  • Evil Chef: One time, when Miu kept dragging the rest of the crew to the café, where Nobue worked part time and repeatedly extorted fancy ice cream from her, she spiked Miu's ice cream with hot sauce. This escalated to a big food fight between Mio and Nobue, which got Nobue fired and not only without pay for the days she worked there, but even with debts to the café for cleaning and damages.
  • Gallows Humor:
    Nobue: "Matsuri! it's Miu! She's dead!"
  • Woman Child: She's definitely not above playing pranks on the girls...
  • Meaningful Name: In the dictionary episode, the girls look up the meaning of their own names - Nobue means "increase faith".
  • Must Have Nicotine
  • Smoking Is Cool
  • Tomboy: She's deeply embarrassed by the frilly skirt and pinny she has to wear for her part-time job at a family restaurant - the girls can't believe what she's wearing.

    Chika Ito 

Chika Ito

Voiced by: Saeko Chiba (Japanese), Wendy Morrison (English)

Nobue's younger sister, a laid-back 6th grader. Described by her as the "normal" one of the group.

    Miu Matsuoka 

Miu Matsuoka

Voiced by: Fumiko Orikasa (Japanese), Caitlynne Medrek (English)

Nobue and Chika's neighbor, who seems to spend a lot more time at the Ito house than her own. She is in the same grade as Chika, and has been friends with Chika since they were little.

    Matsuri Sakuragi 

Matsuri Sakuragi

Voiced by: Ayako Kawasumi (Japanese), Kylie Beaven (English)

A 5th grader who is friends with Chika and Miu. She is timid and tends to scare (and fall down) easily. Nevertheless, Nobue seems to be attracted to her particular brand of cuteness for some reason.

    Ana Coppola 

Ana Coppola

Voiced by: Mamiko Noto (Japanese), Katie Rowan (English)

Originally from Cornwall, England, Ana is one of Matsuri's classmates. She loves Japanese culture, but tries to disguise this fact in front of her peers even though her family has lived in Japan for a while and, as a result, don't speak English as much anymore.

Ana first appears in Episode 2 of the anime, and chapter 11 of the manga.

  • Big Fancy House: Ana's house is huge by Japanese comparison, and actually has a proper lawn (as well as a fancy gate-buzzer), which is a rarity reserved for only the very wealthy.
  • Big, Friendly Dog: Her dog, Frusciante (dubbed "Fu-chan" by Miu).
  • British Stuffiness / Japanese Politeness: She presents a curious blend of both, and is often seen to be very flustered and confounded by the mayhem surrounding her.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Lavender or White are her primary clothing colours of choice.
  • Fauxreigner: Zig-zagged: Although she is an foreigner (she and both of her parents are British), she lived in Japan since a young age and spoke even at home only Japanese, resulting in her almost entirely forgetting her own mother tongue. She tried to feign ignorance of Japanese language and customs and proficiency in the English language, but failed at both tasks (the Japanese language and culture were too deeply ingrained in her for that, her Japanese classmates speak English better than her and she has a better command of the Japanese language than her native Japanese classmates have). That bothers and embarrasses her very much, since she wants to keep her cultural identity and connection with her country of birth and even tries to re-learn English with her friend Matsuri's help.
  • Gorgeous Gaijin: In universe example - when Nobue meets Ana for the first time (whilst a little tipsy), she's instantly smitten with her.
    Nobue (thinking): "Smooth, blond hair, clear blue eyes, skin as white as porcelain, slender long legs..."
    Nobue: "She's mine!!!" *Glomp*
  • Gratuitous English: Having lived in Japan for so long has seriously impaired her ability to speak her native tongue, so when she actually does try to speak English, it comes out like this.
  • Heritage Disconnect: She has lived in Japan so long she's more Japanese than her Japanese peers, culturally speaking. This bothers her enough to ramp up the "foreignness" at school and work with Matsuri to re-learn English.
  • Keigo: Ironically, Ana speaks in a much more formal tone of Japanese than the rest of the girls, especially Nobue....
  • Meaningful Name: In the dictionary episode, Ana is furious when Miu spells her name in kanji to mean "hole", "bone", and "cave", which becomes a Running Gag.
  • New Transfer Student
  • Occidental Otaku: Though she'd never admit it of course, as she's a proud Brit.
  • Ojou
  • Phenotype Stereotype: Blue eyes? Check. Golden hair? Check. Originally from an English-speaking country? Check.
    • It's fairly justified where Ana is concerned, as England (being in Northern Europe) is a nation with a relatively high occurance of fair-hair, especially amongst children.
  • Token White
  • The West Country: Her origin, before the move to Japan.

Alternative Title(s): Ichigo Mashimaro


Example of: