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Non-Human Lover Reveal

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"no homo" says the boy cuddling next to you. You figure he means he isn't homosexual. It never grazed your mind he may be stating he isn’t a homosapien [sic]. That was a very big mistake on your part.
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A boy meets a girl of his dreams, falls in love with her, is reciprocated, and all seems shiny... until The Reveal that the girl isn't quite compatible with him biologically. For example, she is an alien. Or a ghost. Or a demon. Or a six-foot praying mantis in a person-suit. Or... Either way, she is not human and that's a slight hindrance in their relationship. How exactly it plays out depends largely on the author:

Gender Flipped (completely or partly) variations are also included.

If they stay together, Half Human Hybrids may result.

Subtrope of Interspecies Romance. May be a case of Magical Girlfriend or even Action Girlfriend. A common trope in Paranormal Romance but it appears in other genres as well. See also Boy Meets Ghoul.

As this is a form of The Reveal, unmarked spoilers abound. Beware.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Retroactive example: Dragon Ball Z: Chichi learns her husband Goku is an alien. He didn't know either until his brother showed up. Although he was pretty obviously not a human from the beginning, as he had a tail and turned into a giant ape under the light of the full moon. We just didn't know he was an alien.
  • Dusk Maiden of Amnesia: Teiichi doesn't realize Yuuko is a ghost when he first meets her, but she's quick to point it out, and has him convinced before long. It doesn't stop him from falling for her when they start spending time together in the newly-formed Paranormal Investigations Club.
  • Eureka Seven: Eureka is actually a Human Alien. Renton finds out late in the series, by which point he doesn't care, even after she starts changing.
  • Lieutenant Havoc of Fullmetal Alchemist is thrown for a loop when his latest girlfriend turns out to be a homunculus. But she was only dating him in hopes of getting intel on Mustang's movements, and is perfectly willing to kill him (and everyone else involved) once he finds out, so the relationship would have broken up anyway.
  • Space Pirate Mito relates the story of her own reveal to her beloved Kagero to her Half-Human Hybrid son Aoi and asserts that he is the living embodiment of The Power of Love because Kagero married her anyway. Aoi later gets a reveal of his own when the girl he's fallen for turns out to be a Human Alien Galactic Patrol officer staking him out to capture his mother.
  • In Tokyo Ghoul:
    • Nishiki has a human girlfriend as part of his efforts to blend in with human society. When he's critically injured by Kaneki and she comes to check on him, he attacks her in desperation but is too weak to overpower her. To his surprise, once she gets over her shock at discovering he's a Ghoul, Kimi accepts him and helps protect his secret.
    • Similarly, Yoshimura once had a human lover that discovered his secret. She readily accepted him, though this eventually led to tragedy and their murderous Half-Human Hybrid child.
  • From Vampire Knight, we have Yuki, a human, falling in love with the vampire Kaname. But then we find out that Yuki is actually a vampire as well. All the students at the Night School are secretly vampires.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animated 
  • Done in Scooby-Doo and the Alien Invaders when Shaggy fell in love with a girl who was heavily into '60s culture. She turned out to be a Green-Skinned Space Babe in disguise (her clothes and mannerisms having been a result of Aliens Steal Cable), and had to leave Earth at the end of the movie.
    Velma: When I said there was someone out there for you, I didn't mean out there.
  • Shrek:
    • Played with in Shrek: Princess Fiona finds out that the knight who saved her, the title character, is an ogre. Fiona is taken aback, but continues to travel with him anyway. One reason is because, before they got to know each other, he was only planning to take her to Lord Farquaad, rather than for himself. The other reason is the fact that she's cursed to turn into an ogre herself by night.
    • The ending of Shrek 2 has Lillian discovering that her husband Harold is actually a frog who was turned into a human by the Fairy Godmother. Like Fiona their daughter she takes it very well.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Dagon: Double Subverted, where the male lead has dreams about a beautiful mermaid, then he meets her in real life and she appears to be human, even starting to make out with her... until he notices the tentacles emanating from her lower body.
  • Dark Angel: The Ascent: Veronica doesn't reveal that she's a demon until after she and Max have already made love. He's a bit startled by her claws and wings at first, but ultimately doesn't mind.
  • The Deaths of Ian Stone has a peculiar relationship to this trope. In the very beginning, everyone in the setting seems clearly human or clearly inhuman. The second iteration of the main character's Dream Within a Dream reveals that his secondary love interest is both completely inhuman and willing to kill him if he finds out about it. A later iteration reveals that he's inhuman too, albeit with Laser-Guided Amnesia. Unlike most examples, this isn't about the human primary love interest learning to accept him—rather, he learns to think and feel like a human.
  • Galaxy Quest. Fred Kwan and Lailari, who he thinks is a Human Alien. He's quite wrong. But he doesn't care.
  • In Halloweentown III, Dylan (a half-human warlock who Does Not Like Magic) gets involved with a girl just as dorky as he is, only to find out she's a furry pink troll wearing a costume. He reacts badly, tries to apologize, only for her to respond that he looks weird and ugly to her too. By the end of the movie they've made up and are about to have their big kiss...but she suddenly backs out of it, he acts relieved, and they agree that they're Better as Friends.
  • The Man Who Fell to Earth gender flips and deconstructs this with alien Thomas Jerome Newton and his Earthly mistress Mary-Lou. They actually consummate their relationship before he reveals his true, Rubber-Forehead Alien form to her. Once he does, their already-troubled relationship is only further damaged — out of his disguise, he's not capable of lovemaking in the human manner, and she finds him physically hideous anyway. They ultimately fall out of love with each other.
  • The Tales from the Darkside: The Movie movie has a Downer Ending version of this. An Artist down on his luck sees a horrible Gargoyle slaughtering a friend of his. The Gargoyle promises to let him live if he never, ever, EVER!!! tells another living soul about this and he agrees. And then all of a sudden his entire life has an upswing. That very night he meets and falls in love with a mysterious woman who loves him back. She mentions she knows a famous gallery owner willing to give his art a chance... Cut to ten years later. He is a famous artist, they have two lovely children, their love is greater than ever but he is constantly burdened by the horrible secret he carries within him, the ONE thing he hasn't shared with her— and you can probably see where this is going...

  • In Philip José Farmer's The Lovers a man from an oppressive puritan theocracy meets the girl of his dreams in another planet. Except that she's actually a lalitha a highly evolved arthropod.
  • In The Lunar Chronicles, the cyborg Cinder falls in love with the human Prince Kai, but at the ball is revealed to be a cyborg and a member of a race of people living on the moon called Lunar.
  • In the Mistborn novel Shadows of Self, an insane, homicidal, ancient shapeshifter reveals that it was Wax's deceased wife Lessie, and that their god had sent it undercover to protect Wax before it genuinely fell for him. Since Wax had killed "Lessie" by accident, and had just mortally wounded the shapeshifter, he takes it... poorly.
  • In Mysterious Ways: A Divine Comedy, Lilly (angel, and dragon-slayer) finds out that Alex is actually two-thirds dragon.
  • In The Shadowhunter Chronicles:
    • Warlocks are born after a demon has sex with a human. Human parents (almost always women) realize much later that they were intimate with a demon because their child has clear non-human characteristics. Many demons can change their shape so that they are mistaken for humans. However, some cannot, and the result is much more terrible.
    • Fairies sometimes have sexual or romantic encounters with humans. Fairies can very often pretend to be humans, so that the respective person only learns in the course of the relationship that his partner is not a human.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Being Human (UK) Season 2, ghost Annie goes on a date with human Saul Except he's not so normal himself..., and seemed to have feeling towards normal human Hugh. Also vampire Mitchell is falling for regular human Lucy.
  • Bewitched: Darrin Stephens learns his wife Samantha is a witch while on their honeymoon, forming the central conflict between her witch side and his desire to live without magic.
  • Big Wolf on Campus in the second season has this. Human girl Lori Baxter dates werewolf Tommy Dawkins. However, towards the end of the season, they break up because their relationship was getting in the way of their monster fighting.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • Subverted with Tara, who thinks she's a demon and goes to considerable length to prevent Willow from finding out. Turns out she's not; it was just part of her abusive family's "spin to keep the ladies in line".
    • Xander has been referred to as a "demon magnet", as a good deal of the girls he falls for turn out to be not so human. In "Teacher's Pet" he has crush on a substitute teacher, who is actually a giant praying mantis that wants to mate and then eat his head. He later falls for "Inca Mummy Girl", and in season seven he goes on a date with a nice girl who changes her eye colour and offers him as a sacrifice to open the Hellmouth.
    • Buffy discovers that Angel is a vampire while making-out.
    • Willow's relationship with Oz is blooming, and then she discovers he is a werewolf. (Though he only found out less than a day before she did.)
    • Played with extensively in Season 4: Riley discovers Buffy is the slayer (which means demon infused) as she discovers he is a superagent (which is ultimately revealed to be a little bionic).
    • In a novel, the slayer Athena/Nina learns that her friend Leo, with whom she has been in love for years, is a half-demon. At first she is scared, but also because she mistakenly thinks he is a murderer. When the matter is resolved, she takes it surprisingly well. At the time of this unveiling, both are not actually lovers, but are already in love with each other.
  • Charmed (1998): Midway through season 1, it's revealed that Piper's (then) boyfriend Leo is not human and that he's a whitelighter. There had been a few comedic suspicions about him prior to the reveal due to Piper's bad luck with men (her boyfriends often ended up being revealed as evil warlocks) but the reveal that he's their guardian angel does come as a shock to all of them. Since whitelighter/witch romances are traditionally forbidden, the couple do spend most of the entire eight seasons struggling to make it work before everything finally works out in the end. Subverted in that whitelighters are actually born human but are transformed into whitelighters and can be turned back into humans if the occasion demands. All three of their children are half-whitelighter, half-witch.
  • Doctor Who: In "The Unicorn and the Wasp", the Unicorn refers to the nickname of a jewel thief. The Wasp refers to either Lady Eddison's former lover, who appears only in flashback, who initially appeared human but then revealed himself as a member of an alien race that resembles giant wasps, or the child they conceived together, who's also able to take human form, though he became a priest and thus never had a lover to reveal himself to.
  • Interview with the Vampire (2022): In "In Throes of Increasing Wonder...", Louis de Pointe du Lac believed that Lestat de Lioncourt was human throughout their friendship and during their first sexual encounter. However, he starts to suspect that Lestat isn't human when the latter incessantly bombards his mind with telepathic demands to "Come to me/Viens à moi," and Louis even declares during his confession to Father Matthias that "I laid down with the Devil." Lestat finally drops his mortal façade when he enters the church and lets Louis witness firsthand his bloodthirsty vampiric nature. Although Louis is scared of Lestat, the latter's Love Confession is both heartfelt and persuasive enough that Louis willingly receives the Dark Gift from Lestat so they can be together forever.
  • The main character of Moonlight was turned into a vampire by his wife on their wedding night, who forgot to run it by him first before doing so.
  • Red's backstory in the first season of Once Upon a Time includes this. Her boyfriend didn't know he was dating a werewolf. Course, Red didn't know that either, and, thinking it's he who is the wolf, ties him up before the change can take him. Then she turns into the wolf and kills him. Oops.
  • The Outer Limits (1995):
    • In "First Anniversary", two aliens are stranded on Earth use their power to fool people's senses in order to pass as human. Specifically, as very pretty human women who act romantically interested in some rather plain-looking men. Unfortunately, people tend to become resistant to their power after about a year or so, and the men who marry them tend to Go Mad from the Revelation after seeing their true appearances. (In an aversion of Take Our Word for It, when they let down their disguise, it's on-screen — and they really are horrifying.)
    • In "Mary 25", the Innobotics Corporation programmer Melburn Ross disables the fail-safes of the android nanny Mary 25 which prevent her from harming humans so that she will kill his boss Charlie Bouton, who regularly beats his wife (and Melburn's old girlfriend) Teryl. Three months after Mary 25 does so and is dismantled, Melburn finds one of the android remote-control devices in Teryl's bedroom. When he presses the button, Teryl enters sleep mode in the same fashion as Mary 25 and it is revealed that she too is an android. Charlie killed the real Teryl and replaced her with this copy. Melburn realizes that the android Teryl manipulated him into reprogramming Mary 25 so that she could be rid of Charlie once and for all. The android Teryl counters that she wanted to continue the original's relationship with Melburn, who would be a much better father to "her" children Brook and Brandon than Charlie ever was. The episode ends with Melburn backed up against a wall, terrified of the android copy of his former lover.
  • Isabel in Roswell married Jesse Ramirez, who was human, but he didn't find out Isabel was an alien until later in season 3.
  • True Blood has Tara and Sam, human meets shifter.
  • Wolf Like Me has Gary discovering that Mary is a werewolf at the end of episode 2. While initially taken aback and trying to distance himself from her (which is not helped by the fact she confesses to having previously eaten her husband and a whole family), they manage to make it work by the end of episode 4.
  • On The Vampire Diaries, Elena unexpectedly meets Stefan and feels an instant connection with him in season one. However, Stefan is hiding a deep, dark secret: he is a century old vampire. As Stefan and Elena fall harder for each other, Elena eventually discovers that Stefan is a vampire.

  • "The Alien Jellyfish Song" by Chris Conway is about an alien who spends some time on Earth and hits it off with a bartender. After they return to his home planet, he reveals his true form to her, and then she reveals that she's also an alien who had spent the past decade stranded on Earth.

    Myths & Religion 
  • Subverted in an Arab folktale. A daughter of a ghoul (human-eating monster) winds up with some of its magical powers. She nearly gets married to a prince except for the presence of another girl. She throws herself into an oven and reforms, leaving fresh bread ready in the oven to start a welcoming feast for the prince. The other girl claims similar abilities, throws herself into the oven, and burns to death.
  • In Greek Mythology there were a few examples of this type. For instance, male gods would occasionally reveal who they were on taking leave from the woman they had just impregnated. In a more spectacular example, Hera posed as an old woman to trick Semele, one of her husband Zeus' lovers, into getting him to promise to do her a favour and then make that favour to show himself to her in his true form. She did not survive the experience.
  • The Huldra women of Norwegian folklore become mortal and gain souls when they are married to a man. However, they still keep their magic and freakish strength, much to the peril of unfaithful husbands.
  • Older Than Print: Kitsune are subject to this trope. Kitsune-wives usually left when their true nature was exposed, but in at least one tale, the husband called after her, reassuring her of welcome, so she returned, but only at night.
  • The medieval story of Melusine, which dates back at least to the 12th century, tells of a knight marrying a woman called Melusine:
    • One version is she marries him on condition that he never look at her naked. One day his curiosity got the better of him and he peeked while she was taking a bath. To his horror he saw that she had a snake-like tail, showing she was a water-sprite or mermaid. When she realized that her secret was out, she left through the window, never to be seen again. In the most common version of the story, this Melusine is the supposed ancestress of the French Lusignan family. How this could be the case when her husband couldn't see her naked is probably best ignored.
    • Another version had the condition that she be allowed to be alone, locking herself in her room, every Saturday or Sunday till noon, and the knight would never try to look at or visit her then. This was because she was cursed -by her mother!- to turn into a serpent from the waist down during that time, and did not wish him to know. All of her children were born with some slight deformity, but were otherwise brave, good, and fortunate. But the whispers that the children were deformed because they were not his became too much for the knight, and he spied on her. When she found out, she left him, never to be seen again.
  • The Selkie myths of Ireland, almost exactly the same as the kitsune-wives, but the men capture the women by hiding the pelts that let them turn back into seals.
  • There's a Japanese myth about Yuki-Onna, which plot was used for the Tales from the Darkside: The Movie example mentioned above.

    Video Games 
  • This is one of the possible endings in the Interactive Fiction game Afflicted, where you are a restaurant inspector who stumbles across a feud between vampires. After the player reassembles Sofia's body, he can agree to be turned into a vampire himself; if you simply leave Nikolai's Bar afterwards, Sofia ends up moving in with you.
  • Catherine: The blonde lady of your dreams turns out to be a succubus sent to you. Full Body would later add an alien.
  • An inversion of this happens in Master Detective Archives: Rain Code where the main character, Yuma Kokohead, meets a girl name Kirumi Wendy during a case he was investigating in Kanai Ward. However, Kirumi would later to be revealed as a homunculus where the original Kirumi was already killed off and the Kirumi Yuma meets is her undead replacement. However, despite this and even knowing she is immortal, Kirumi is still very much attracted to Yuma and even leaves Kanani Ward with the Book of Death in hopes of reuniting with him instead of waiting for him to return as he promised.
  • Teddie's crush on Labrys in Persona 4: Arena inverts this. He meets her thinking she was a normal human girl, feeling ashamed of his own non human nature when it is revealed to her soon after. The eventual reveal that she isn't human either, but an amnesiac battle android only makes him more enthusiastic about winning her for himself, if anything.
  • There was a subplot in the Game Boy Advance RPG Robopon 2 based around this. You have to round up a group of alien schoolgirls on a field trip from the moon (It Makes Sense in Context) and one of them disguises herself as a human and has a guy fall in love with her. You chase them all over the world map. When she finally admits to him that she's an alien, he says that he'll love her no matter what.

    Visual Novels 
  • In Kanon, it's revealed that Makoto was actually a young fox that Yuuichi looked after when he was young. He was forced to abandon her when he left town, and she made a wish to become human so she could meet him again. Years later, her wish comes true, but as a human she doesn't remember who she is or why she's angry at Yuuichi. Her wish also has the cost of her eventually losing her intelligence and motor controls, until she only has the intelligence of the animal she once was.
  • In The Song of Saya, this takes a very dark turn; Fuminori enters a relationship with Saya, a girl who's the only person who doesn't appear hideous to him due to his condition. It turns out that she's really a hideous Eldritch Abomination who's on a mission to convert all of humanity into beings like her.

  • In Darwin Carmichael Is Going to Hell, Darwin (and the audience) assume Ginny is a lesbian due to her vagueness about being a Technical Virgin. But after Ginny comes over to Darwin's apartment, she unexpectedly enters into a dramatic confrontation with one of her exes... who turns out to be one of the angels that live on Darwin's couch.
  • Parodied in Oglaf. A fairytale princess asks the Knight in Shining Armor to make love to her, before taking off her dress to reveal a writhing mess of tentacles. The knight immediately flees, much to the princess's dismay, who is apparently a pretty nice person all things considered. Her chambermaid advises her to not drop the bomb on the first date.
  • The comic Orange Marmalade focuses heavily on the main character Ma-ri's dilemma to both keep the fact she is a vampire hidden from her boyfriend but also struggling over whether or not she should tell him she is.When he eventually discovers the truth from a third party, he is disgusted and horrified to say the least.
  • Ow, my sanity, explicitly a deconstruction of the Magical Girlfriend genre, pairs a human with a Humanoid Abomination. The strip is ongoing, but it looks like said human is going to get an Unwanted Harem composed entirely of Lovecraftian monstrosities.
  • xkcd has this comic, where the reveal shows unexpected dangers of online dating.

    Western Animation 
  • Inverted in Futurama. Fry falls for Leela when both believe her to be an unknown species of alien; in fact, she's a human mutant who was left on the surface.
  • Parodied in the first episode of Gravity Falls. Mabel's new boyfriend is more than a bit strange, and Dipper, newly-armed with the Journal, quickly becomes convinced that he's a zombie. Eventually, "Norman" takes Mabel into the woods to make a confession, and she's thrilled by the idea that he might be a vampire. He removes his hoodie to reveal... several gnomes standing on each other's shoulders.
    Jeff the gnome: Is this weird? Is this too weird? Do you need to sit down?
  • Johnny Bravo:
    • Parodied by a Show Within a Show soap opera wherein a woman confesses to her lover that she is not what she appears, revealing herself to be a giant dalmatian.
    • In another episode, Johnny goes on a date with a deer. No, not a humanoid deer, part-deer human, anything like that - an actual, albeit talking, deer.
    • In another episode, Johnny goes on a date with a woman who turns out to be a werewolf, and he's actually desperate enough to try to make it work, until he discovers she's hiding an even worse secret. On Wednesdays she changes into a a short, bald stamp collector named Melvin.
    • One episode plays with this trope, in that Johnny goes out on a date with a vampire woman who the audience knows from the start isn't human, but he remains blissfully unaware until the episode's end. She ends up going back to her old (vampire) boyfriend at that point, and Johnny handles the vampire thing pretty well.
  • Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has such a moment in the backstory, wherein action film star Lou Jitsu learned his girlfriend Big Mama was a spider Yōkai. This probably would've gone over better if she hadn't revealed this as she was kidnapping him.
  • Samurai Jack; in Season 5, Jack rescues an assassin named Ashi, helping her pull a Heel–Face Turn and even starting a relationship with her. Then its revealed that she is a Half-Human Hybrid with her father being Aku, who wastes no time in bending her to his will.
  • Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!: Chiro's girlfriend is revealed to be a robot. He doesn't mind, though.