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Piggyback Cute

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They're so cute, they even get Love Bubbles!

A cutesy way of showing romantic Ship Tease fanservice for a couple where one partner carries the other on their back. Common element of a Falling-in-Love Montage.

This is an important trope for many Korean Series as a "clean" way to show attraction between two people.

Because this isn't limited to romantic couples, this can also happen between siblings, or even between parents and children.

See also Over-the-Shoulder Carry, Meet Cute, Sleep Cute.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • In Berserk Guts inverts this somewhat because he gives his Love Interest Casca a Bridal Carry on one occasion, and any other time he has to carry one of his female companions, such as little Schierke, he gives them a piggyback ride. While this can indeed be adorable too, it implies that he views his relationship with them as platonic compared to his love for Casca.
  • An example in Ceres, Celestial Legend plays it for intense drama, where the piggyback rider had been fatally wounded (Chidori) and dies on the back of her crush (Yuuhi) few before they reach their destination. Understandably, Yuuhi is devastated when he realizes what happened.
  • In D.Gray-Man, Allen receives one from Link, when he's alone and hurt. Yeah. And then he received one from Mana when he was young.
  • In Elemental Gelade the character Ren needs to recharge her powers by sleeping, which happens a lot. Since the party usually wants to keep moving, she spends a lot of the series on Cou's back.
  • Ed gives one to Winry in Fullmetal Alchemist (and then promptly drops her on her butt when she decides to reveal she broke open his watch to learn the secret he has written on the inside).
  • In GUN×SWORD, Van carries Wendy this way when she's sick with a fever. It comes at the end of an episode that was very heavy on character development, but some of the potential cuteness is traded for comedy when he chooses this moment to admit that he doesn't like her mascot pet.
  • Similar sequence at the beginning of Happy World!, another moe manga.
  • Tomoe does this to Nanami in Kamisama Kiss after the latter gets drunk.
  • In The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (2005), Link has to carry Ghanti up the mountainside on his back.
  • In the manga Living Game, there is a sequence where Izumi faints in a public bath and Fuwa sweet piggybacks her back to her place.
  • Further establishing their role as a main couple, Touma of Magical Record Lyrical Nanoha Force gives one to love interest Lily at the end of the first chapter after he rescues her.
  • Considering that majority of the times the trope is invoked, the male character carries the female character on his back, Majikoi! Love Me Seriously! does an unusual case of gender role reversal when Momoyo carries Yamato on her back at the end of episode 5 after his "battle" with Kokoro.
  • Ginta carries Snow off of the battlefield this way after she loses in the third round in MÄR.
  • In Monthly Girls' Nozaki-kun, Ryousuke is once made to piggy-back the drunk Miyako home after accidentally letting her have one too many drinks. As one would expect from the series, potential for this to be romantic ends up getting subverted when the drunk Ryousuke worries about touching her and decides to let go just as Miyako is thinking the same thing and also lets go. As a result, Miyako is dropped to the floor and their friend is dumbfounded by the idiocy.
  • My Dress-Up Darling: Gojo carries Marin on his back during the fireworks festival in Chapter 38, after her feet get hurt from walking too much in sandals (for context, she was wearing a pair of high-heel sandals as opposed to traditional Japanese geta).
  • In Princess Nine, after Takasugi hits Ryo's lightning ball and she actually catches it on the return, knocking her back, he gives her one against her will. And he carries her all the way to her house, calling himself her new boyfriend in front of her mother upon arrival, much to her annoyance.
  • Subverted and Played for Laughs in The Quintessential Quintuplets. During the fireworks festival, Fuutarou finds Miku after she got lost and got one of her feet stepped on, and for a moment it seems like he's gonna do this... but he only carries her she can look around above him for Ichika, and then asks her to come back down because she's too heavy for him to carry.
  • Ranma ½:
    • Ranma gets one from Akane in one of their "sweet" moments. Because he claims that it's too embarrassing to receive one from a girl, Akane sprays him with cold water from a hose, telling him that that should make it all right now, since they're both girls.
    • In the live action special, a girl Ranma carries Akane on her back.
  • In Episode 35-B of Rock Lee's Springtime of Youth, after Hinata gets injured from a car chase, Naruto carries her this way when he takes her to the hospital, much to her delight.
  • In the Rumic World story Sleep and Forget, Ryohei carries Haruka on his back, giving her a faint memory of the time he carried her on his back in a past life.
  • In the Rurouni Kenshin TV series, a flashback involving Anji Yukyuzan's past has him carry a girl who has a huge Precocious Crush on him like this through a snowy field, as she promises to always be with him. Sadly, the poor girl is murdered shortly afterwards.
  • Saber Marionette J: Otaru often does it for Lime (and once for Cherry too).
  • In GO-GO Tamagotchi! episode 7a, Mametchi has trouble reaching a door above him in the maze of Tamagotchi School. This gets Himespetchi thinking of Mametchi helping her up and giving her a piggyback ride.
  • Your Lie in April:
    • Tsubaki carried Kousei on her back during their childhood and later, during highschool, Kousei did the same for Tsubaki after she injures her leg during a baseball game.
    • Kousei also carries Kaori like this when she asks him to carry her out of her hospital room, since by then her disease has become so serious that she couldn't walk anymore.

    Asian Animation 
  • Happy Heroes: In Season 8 episode 27, Careful S. and his Sapient House friend are at the beach and see a man giving his girlfriend a piggyback ride. The house thinks it looks fun and has Careful S. give her a piggyback ride, but with her being a house, she proves too heavy for Careful S. and he sinks into the sand.

    Fan Works 
  • Bridge to Terabithia 2: The Last Time: This LDD-fanfic that depicts Jess and Leslie as teenagers has several bonding scenes like this, with Jess carrying Leslie over his back a few times. Notably after Leslie returns to Terabithia for the first time after being absent for five years due to being a kidnapped victim of a human trafficking ring and cut off from society most of the time; she ends up exhausted and falling asleep, necessitating Jess to haul her on his back all the way from the forest back home.
    • In a later scene, Maybelle attempts this on her new best friend-slash-love interest Dylan, only to nearly pull him down because he's not strong enough to carry her.
  • The Dragon That Will Pierce the Heavens: Luffy invokes this with Hikari often, hanging off her back when they are walking somewhere or even just to 'get a better look' at something in the distance.
  • The Kedabory Verse:
    • Glitter Force: Into the Glitterverse: While trying to round up all the infected Cures, Hana (under the Glitter Force, known as Lana) invokes this by jumping onto Honoka's back. Honoka reluctantly agrees to piggyback, as long as it means Lana will cooperate.
    • Ma Fille: In "Heritage", after staying up past her bedtime for a firework show, Katrina rides on her father's back home.
  • Naru-Hina Chronicles: Lee carries Arekusu on his back after they're done training with Gai for the day.

    Films — Animation 
  • In Turning Red, the picture Mei takes with her family, friends and 4*Town has Abby piggybacking on Tae Young's back which given the significance this trope has in Korean Series, the fact that Abby is Korean and her feelings toward Tae Young means it's likely she was trying to invoke this trope.

    Films — Live-Action 

  • In The Easy Part of Impossible, Cotton carries Ria to his house this way when she's cold and tired from swimming in a pool they found in a cave.

    Live-Action TV 

    Video Games 
  • Yet another non-romantic example in Brain Dead 13 in that Lance is the cute rider on piggyback while Frankenstein's Monster Jerk Jock Moose is the vile, ugly mount who tries getting him off yet gets blinded and ridden like a horse while playing "dodge the deadly lightning rods".
  • Non-romantic and rather tragic example from Dark Souls III, showcased by the final Lord of Cinder, the Twin Princes. The younger, more frail twin Lothric drapes his hands across the physically stronger, and older twin, Lorian.
  • In Final Fantasy VIII, Squall carries Rinoa on his back to Esthar after she falls into a coma after becoming a Sorceress. In an interesting case of Gameplay and Story Integration, Squall's field model is shown carrying Rinoa on his back throughout this part of the game.
  • In Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory, Neptune (as Purple Heart) gets forced to give Pururut/Plutia one because she's feeling sleepy already.
  • In Katawa Shoujo, Hisao does this with Emi in her pre-route animation.
  • Another Non-Romantic example in Kirbys Return To Dreamland where any character can piggyback on the others.
  • In The Legend of Dragoon, Shana hurts her ankle by getting it stuck in mud and Dart carries her piggyback style through the rest of the area.
  • In Rean's bonding event with Fie at Bareahard in The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II, he ends up carrying Fie because her shoes were damaged and figured that he didn't want her feet to be hurt.
  • In one of the The Prince of Tennis dating sim games, the female Player Character can get piggybacks from some of the guys she can romance, most noticeably Sanada, Yanagi, Fuji and Oishi (pictured above)
  • Non-romantic example in Tales of Vesperia: after Karol saves the party from the Baitojoh and passes out from exhaustion, Raven carries him out of the Blade Drifts.
  • Valhalla Knights: Eldar Saga, if you choose to romance the dwarf girl, you end up carrying her back to her city like this. Since she's being pressured into an Arranged Marriage with the local prince to unite their tribes (following the king's xenophobic, ultraconservative reign), it's implied that you take a detour.

  • Parodied in Ghastly's Ghastly Comic, where Chibi Sue has to be carried due to being so drunk she barely can stand.
  • Soul Symphony: Used as a strategy in battle between Olivia and John to combine their powers. Olivia gets a little flustered with the idea.

    Web Video 

    Western Animation 
  • Bob's Burgers: Platonic example; for a girl who hates overt displays of affection, Louise won't hesitate to get a piggyback ride from her father.
    • Bob gives her a piggyback ride in "Bob & Deliver" as the Home Ec-staurant rushes to the cafeteria. It should be noted that Bob didn't offer the ride—Louise got on without being promptednote . Even after she stops piggybacking, she can be seen holding onto Bob's arm.
    • Bob gives her another piggyback ride in "Sea Me Now" as the Belchers and Teddy depart their boat for shore, likely because Louise is too short to walk through the water.
  • Jellystone!: In "The Brave Little Daddy," Jinks gives Huck a piggyback ride. It's really adorable, especially when Huck says "Downsies, please".
  • Ready Jet Go!: Another platonic example; Jet is shown giving Mindy an adorable piggyback ride when they enter the house in "Project Pluto." This shows that he's a metaphorical Cool Big Bro towards her.
  • Work It Out Wombats!: Example between brothers; Malik is shown giving Zeke an adorable piggyback ride at the beginning of "Make It Snow."