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Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl

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She's LITERALLY dragging him along!

Mac: Goo, I'm really sorry for what I said about you. You're not weird. You're really creative and funny and nice, and if you're not too mad at me, I really wanna be your friend too.
Goo: [excited] Okay! [hugs and squeezes Mac]
Mac: Okay... that's great... you're... crushing me.

This is a potential pairing (platonic or otherwise) between a pragmatic guy and a girl who is very full of energy.

The usual gender stereotype is that guys are stronger and may only care about sex, while girls are soft but nicer/smarter. This averts that stereotype (for the most part at least): the guy is the smart but physically inept one and it seems he got himself the company of a girl who most would have trouble keeping up with in the first place.

In some cases, the girl can be smarter than the guy, but because she's too busy trying to have fun, this is occasional at most. Perhaps this is why she acts as a Morality Pet sometimes. Compare Good Is Dumb, although she's more likely to merely be calling out the savvy guy than be evil in her smart moments, so it is closer to Good Is Not Dumb.

If the guy and the girl are in a romantic relationship, the girl may also be a Manic Pixie Dream Girl. If this girl is living with several savvy guys, she's likely a Nerd Nanny.

Unlike the Savvy Girl, the Savvy Guy is usually wittier and more prone to wisecracks and doesn't give in to his emotions quite as much.

There is a specific subset of this trope in a slice of fiction. Many works featuring male × male or female × female romantic relationships will also follow the trope, except for the gender requirement. One partner in the pair will be being and optimistic while the other is savvy and more slothful, quiet, or otherwise less expressive.

Compare Perky Female Minion, Uptight Loves Wild, Strong Girl, Smart Guy, Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy, and Red Oni, Blue Oni. Sometimes overlaps with Monster and the Maiden. For another couples trope based on personality (and the pair that sometimes completes their Four-Temperament Ensemble), see Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Chrono and Rosette in Chrono Crusade, although with a few slight variations. For one thing, Chrono is actually stronger than Rosette, but since their contract means his powers take time away from Rosette's lifespan, Chrono prefers to let Rosette take the lead in combat situations and only uses his true power as a back-up plan. And for another, while Chrono comes across as much more rational than Rosette, it's actually only because Rosette is very Hot-Blooded and impulsive, and Chrono has much more experience than she does. When he's matching wits with someone closer to his true age, Chrono comes across as someone with average intelligence and much more impulsive and emotional than is obvious when he's with Rosette.
  • Code Geass: Lelouch Lamperouge and nearly any girl he can be paired with because Lelouch is a Squishy Wizard of sorts. Even his own little sister is shown to be more energetic than him. (This is even more hilarious when one recalls that she is paraplegic at the time of the series itself.)
  • In Final Fantasy: Lost Stranger, Shogo is the savvy guy to Yuko's energetic girl. Shogo is a neurotic Final Fantasy Otaku whose skill at observation causes him to overthink himself into an indecisive rut. Meanwhile, Yuko's energy and positivity mean that she has no problems jumping headlong into new situations even when she doesn't have all the information.
  • Fruits Basket: Kyou Sohma and Tohru Honda seem to be this, but the manga shows that Tohru has quite the issues under her Genki Girl facade and Kyou is more "sulky" than "savvy".
  • Inverted in Goddess Creation System. The prince is goofy and energetic, but Xiaxi adopts a cold and distant attitude. He grows increasingly interested in how she hasn't really emoted in front of him since the time they first met.
  • The Keet Shuichi Shindou and his Perpetual Frowner boyfriend Eiri Yuki from Gravitation are maybe the trope codifiers in yaoi manga.
  • K has a (sorta) platonic version in the backstory with Fushimi Saruhiko and Yata Misaki. Saruhiko provided the savvy while Misaki provided the energy and creativity. At least until Saruhiko "betrayed" Misaki rather than have him not pay attention to him. At the end of the second season, they have made up and returned to this dynamic.
  • Tomoe from Kamisama Kiss is a lot stronger than Nanami but thanks to the magic contract between them he is forced to obey her.
  • Kyousogiga: Myoe (the second) and Koto (also the second). He's the serious-minded temporary ruler of the "Mirror Capital," and she's the uncontrollable kid who pops in to disrupt his orderly world... with a giant hammer. The original Myoe and Koto also fit this trope, to a lesser degree.
  • Little Witch Academia (2017) has the relationship between Akko and Andrew as this. The former is an Inept Mage who nonetheless remains optimistic and determined to become a mage even if she gets into trouble while the latter is skeptical of magic and down to Earth, but gradually warms to her and supports her endeavor with his own advice.
  • Ginta and Koyuki have something resembling this in MÄR. He's not super-smart, just kinda geeky and to some extent anti-social. She's pretty energetic and pretty much the only kid around to give him the time of day.
  • My Dress-Up Darling: Male lead Wakana Gojo is a meek, easily startled, and socially withdrawn recluse who initially only found solace in doll-making. Female lead Marin Kitagawa is a bubbly, outgoing, and popular model who is deeply passionate about her cosplay hobby. Her entering his life is what starts to bring Gojo out of his shell as he learns more and more about cosplay and Marin herself.
  • In My Hero Academia, protagonist Izuku Midoriya has this dynamic with Ochaco Uraraka. This is enforced by the author himself, as he thought Uraraka's Plucky Girl personality would play off well on Midoriya's more introverted and pessimistic personality.
  • Naruto:
    • Shikamaru and either of the girls he is most paired with fit this trope. Temari and Ino are both far more aggressive than he is. Both tell him to "man up" or push him to stop being lazy. In the end, Shikamaru is paired with the former and the latter is paired with the near-emotionless Sai.
    • In Boruto, there are implications that the upbeat and energetic Hanabi and the more down-to-earth Konohamaru have a similar relationship. They're at minimum enough familiar with one another to go drinking together.
  • Negima! Magister Negi Magi has a female/female version: Setsuna and her charge/crush Konoka. Konoka is bubbly and energetic, while Setsuna is more serious and reluctant of getting too emotionally close to Konoka since she wants to keep acting like a professional bodyguard. Konoka usually tries to shake Setsuna out of her impersonal attitude and likes to tease her and drag her along.
  • Gender inverted in Ouran High School Host Club with Haruhi and Tamaki.
  • The Pet Girl of Sakurasou: Jin is a cool, calm, and mature Ladykiller in Love with Misaki.
  • The co-stars of Pokémon Heroes Latios and Latias fit this as well as Red Oni, Blue Oni. They are both capable in combat, but Latios is a quiet and calm Sugar-and-Ice Personality, while his sister Latias is a friendly and cheerful Genki Girl.
  • The Prince of Tennis has an example featuring two guys: the Keet and Fiery Redhead Eiji Kikumaru and his gender-flipped Yamato Nadeshiko partner Shuuichirou Oishi. Naturally, the yaoi fangirls have cheerfully latched on them, and no one can blame them.
  • Princess Tutu: Fakir and Ahiru. The Knight in Sour Armor/Jerkass and The Pollyanna. While not physically inept, Fakir acts more controlled and pragmatic than the enthusiastic Ahiru who often trips due to carelessness.
  • Tower of God: Yuri Jahad is a princess who does whatever she wants. Evan Edroch is a high ranker and well-respected Navigator (also very short). She drags him to the bottom of the tower (Worldbuilding in a very literal sense) just to see a new irregular.
  • Uzaki-chan Wants to Hang Out!: Shinichi Sakurai is a 3rd-year university student who just wants to spend his free time alone. Unfortunately for him, the short, energetic, and very buxom 2nd-year student Hana Uzaki has taken notice of this and decided to remedy that by pestering and teasing him until he is forced to hang out with her.
  • The Way of the Househusband: Tatsu's relationship with his wife. He is a stone-cold ex-criminal while she is career-oriented with a large Otaku streak. Best shown when both go shopping together, with him being frugal and her being more willing to splurge money.
  • Yandere Kanojo has Manabu Tanaka, stoic par excellence, dating Hot-Blooded Delinquent Tsundere Reina Ryuuzaki.
  • Your Lie in April:
    • Kousei is the reserved, cynical Straight Man while Kaori is cheerful, wild, and optimistic.
    • Kousei also fits with his best friend, Tsubaki, who is tomboyish and energetic. She has unrequited feelings towards him.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!:
    • While they never go beyond subtext, since the series (especially the anime) thrives on Ship Tease, Mahaado and his student Mana fit this trope quite well. About the only point missing is the Squishy Wizard status, since Mahaado is well trained both in magic and military arts.
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds has Jack and Carly. While he doesn't fit the "soft" attribute (being quite physically adept), he's very aloof and scornful of friendships. She's very excitable and clumsy and is probably the only person in the series who has gotten Jack to attend a social event that didn't involve dueling.

    Asian Animation 
  • In Banzi's Secret Diary, Banzi is far more upbeat and outgoing than Hoyong, her more composed, shy boyfriend.

    Comic Books 
  • Batman and Catwoman often have a downplayed version of this relationship: while they're both fairly cynical, she fully embraces the flirtatious side of their encounters, teases him enough that his Deadpan Snarker tendencies show up, and as Nightwing notes, reignites his sense of humor even away from her.
  • Lois Lane and Clark Kent are possibly the Ur-Example of this trope, definitely so in the genre of comics. The question isn't so much who's smarter as it is who's running headlong into danger for a story while the other struggles to keep up. This doesn't completely apply to Lois and Superman, however.
  • Tim Drake/Robin (goal-oriented, serious introvert) with Stephanie Brown/Spoiler (plucky, street-smart people person).
  • Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson have a relationship like this, though he bounces between being savvy and energetic (his constant mockery and jokes he makes while wearing the costume).
  • Poison Ivy is best friends with Harley Quinn and one of the few sane influences in the latter's life; she's especially one of the very few people in Gotham directly trying to interfere with Harley's extremely unhealthy relationship with The Joker. Conversely, Harley is the only one who can get Ivy to put aside her crusade to wipe out humanity to make way for plantkind. Together, they're very nearly somewhat kinda two normal - albeit criminal - persons.
  • The Ranzz Twins in Legion of Super-Heroes (2020), where Ayla (Lightning Lass) is a hot-blooded revolutionary while Garth (Lightning Lad) is the more subdued, levelheaded twin.
  • Young Liars: Sadie acts the way she does because a bullet in her head destroyed her inhibitions and ability to recognize consequences. Danny was her stalker prior to the shooting, and since then has taken advantage of it to make her completely dependent on him.

    Fan Works 
  • Prehistoric Earth: Leon is the usually calm and methodical Smart Guy animal expert of the titular prehistoric zoo's animal rescue team while his love interest Yolanda Hall is a bubbly, excitable, and incredibly happy go lucky Genki Girl.


  • Darkness Burning: The peppy Anna is in an Arranged Marriage with a serious and quiet man named Joachim. Anna is originally turned off by him precisely because he's too bland, however her parents decide to push them together because they're complementary. It takes a while but it ultimately turns into a (near) Perfectly Arranged Marriage.

The Hunger Games


  • The Bloody Fates: Kayla is always cheerful and energetic, while her older brother Kaon is primarily intellectual and calm.


Total Drama


  • Tales from the Fleet: Lacey is the savvy human girl, calmer and more sensible than Tirra is, the energetic Aurin girl who does not hesitate to show her interest in the former.

    Films — Animation 
  • Inverted in Bolt with naïve, idealistic Bolt and witty, down-to-earth Mittens.
  • In Corpse Bride, Emily and Victor. The former is a dead bride who is rather lively and spiritual for a corpse, while the latter is a live man who is shy and awkward almost to a fault.
  • Gru and Lucy from Despicable Me 2. She's a major Genki Girl with a Motor Mouth, he's a Deadpan Snarker Villain Protagonist. Let the shipping commence!
  • Pixar's Finding duology:
    • Dory and Marlin in the first movie; Marlin tends to be cautious while Dory tends to be happy-go-lucky.
    • This dynamic in Finding Dory replaces Marlin with the cranky, cynical Hank.
  • This defines Anna and Kristoff's relationship in Frozen nicely. She is a spunky princess willing to do whatever it takes to bring her sister home, he is a grumpy, rough-around-the-edges ice harvester helping her along the way.
  • Manfred and Ellie in the Ice Age series, although Ellie becomes a lot more level-headed in later installments.
  • Even though she barely speaks to him throughout the movie (since her voice has been taken away), Ariel and Prince Eric from The Little Mermaid fit the trope when they properly meet.
  • Mr. Peabody & Sherman:
  • Moana inverts this with Moana and Maui. The latter is a hammy, excitable and Hot-Blooded demi-god, while the former is much more subdued and down to earth. On the other hand, Maui is the wisecracker of the two, while Moana is the somewhat inexperienced emotional heart of the movie.
  • Gender Inverted on Monsters University: the Scare Games announcers Claire and Brock are a Savvy Girl and Energetic Guy.
  • Inverted with Jack and Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas. He's an excitable showman with some serious Mood-Swinger tendencies while she's a withdrawn Proper Lady.
  • The Prince of Egypt: a sibling example of The Cynic Aaron and Plucky Girl Miriam.
  • Inverted in The Princess and the Frog - Tiana is a hard-working, down-to-earth girl, and Naveen is the Fun Personified prince.
  • Zig-Zagged in Tangled. Their personalities fit the trope because Rapunzel is an energetic Genki Girl and Flynn is a Deadpan Snarker. However, Rapunzel has major conflicting feelings of excitement to finally see the world, and guilt for disobeying her mother's orders of staying in the tower. Trying to trick her into dropping the deal, Flynn tells her that this is just a part of growing up. A little adventure, a little rebellion... that's good. Healthy, even.
  • Trolls has the main characters, cynical survivalist Branch and carefree, happy-go-lucky Poppy.
  • Up: The quiet and timid Carl befriended and eventually married the Genki Girl Ellie.
  • Wreck-It Ralph gives us a non-romantic example of Ralph and Vanellope.
  • Zootopia: Nick and Judy to a tee. He's a snarky, cool, and cynical guy, she's an optimistic and feisty dreamer. Some promotional images show Judy literally dragging Nick along by his tie.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Anna and the Apocalypse: Sickeningly Sweethearts Chris and Lisa form this nicely, with Chris being a film geek while one reviewer called Lisa a budding cabaret performer.
  • Big Fat Liar: While gender inverted for much of the film, Jason and Kaylee play this one absolutely straight in the Mission Briefing for The Con against their Up to Eleven Bad Boss.
  • Dance of the Dead Jimmy is a Brilliant, but Lazy snarker, while Lindsay is the fiercely energetic student council Vide-president. Steven (a Sci-Fi club member) and Gwen (a Dumb Blonde cheerleader) could also apply, if you count them as a couple.
  • A gender-flipped and downplayed version appears in The Hot Chick: April's batty, meddlesome, slightly paranoid mother and her low-key father who usually responds by telling her to get a life.
  • The first time Emily Friehl meets Oliver Martin in A Lot Like Love, he tells her that in six years he plans to be settled and content in both life and career while she lives life by the moment.
  • Down-to-earth Michael and flighty ditz Delysia in Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day.
  • Larry Daley and Amelia Earheart in the Night at the Museum sequel. Bonus points taking that Larry is portrayed by Ben Stiller.
  • Solo has a gender-flipped version; Qi'ra is the sharp-witted, pragmatic Savvy Girl to the upbeat and headstrong Han's Energetic Guy (this was before Han Took a Level in Cynic).

  • Fear Street: Although they never get much focus at the same time, Kenny Klein (the front-runner for valedictorian) and Jade Feldman (the only cheerleader who can do a triple backflip) form one in the Seniors series.
  • Flipped has energetic, friendly, outgoing, and socially-inept Juli and Stepford Smiler Jerk with a Heart of Gold Bryce who just wants to keep his head down and get through school without becoming a social pariah. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Geronimo and his sister Thea in Geronimo Stilton, with Geronimo being the more reserved, uptight older brother who prefers more intellectual pursuits in his spare time, and Thea being the adventurous, Passionate Sports Girl of a younger sister.
  • Witch hunter Newt and mystic Anathema in Good Omens. Of the Dating Catwoman variation.
  • Haruhi Suzumiya: This is set out for Kyon and Haruhi in the prologue of the first novel and extends to at least the tenth novel. Kyon is a lazy, stoic, and snarky guy, while Haruhi is a fanciful Genki Girl who constantly drags her friends into Zany Schemes. It's hinted that Haruhi likes him but is too much of a Tsundere to admit it outright. Kyon doesn't really reciprocate but can't make this clear, as upsetting her too much could upend the world as they know it due to her Reality Warper powers.
  • Journey to Chaos: Tiza and Nolien contrast each other in this way. Tiza is a high-energy Glory Seeker that loves jumping into danger, and the more the better! Nolien is cautious and more rational and gets metaphorically or literally dragged into Tiza's danger while snarking at her.
  • Wellington Books and Eliza Braun in the Ministry of Peculiar Occurances series of Steampunk novels by Pip Ballatyne and Tee Morris are a brain-and-brawn partnership with Meaningful Names. Books is in charge of the Archives and chiefly concerned with maintaining his analytical engine, while Braun is a field agent who was "trained at an early age by her parents in the art of hand to hand combat, sharpshooting and pouring the perfect pint".
  • My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!: Catarina is the energetic girl to Geordo, Keith, Alan, and Nicol. This is even shown in one shot of the second season opening, where she is happily munching on large quantities of food while the male leads are slumped down on the table.
  • In Night World, James is the Savvy Guy to Poppy's Energetic Girl; he's pragmatic, Wise Beyond Their Years and occasionally brooding, while she's vibrant, excitable, and always tries to look on the bright side. They're soulmates who balance out each other nicely.
  • Nyaruko: Crawling with Love!: Mahiro is an Unfazed Everyman who can take in any weirdness however much he doesn't like it, and Nyarko is an alien in love with him who takes him on adventures.
  • A non-romantic (until the finale) version is Kirino, a school overachiever who can't talk of her secret hobbies to anyone, and her brother Kyosuke, who gives her life advice, from Oreimo.
  • Asher and Eliza in Someone Else's War.
  • Genderflipped in Florence Barclay's Through the Postern Gate, where Guy "Boy Blue" Chelsea is the Energetic Guy to Christobel Charteris's Savvy Girl.
  • Twilight: In 1948, Alice and Jasper met in a small diner in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Alice approached him as if they were already close friends and told him that he'd kept her waiting a long time. Jasper was mystified and wary, but his ability to feel Alice's joyful emotions impacted him greatly, which allowed him to take her hand when she held it out, saying that, "For the first time in a century, I felt hope." He then learned to reciprocate her feelings.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Mild example in Fitz Simmons: Fitz is shown to be pragmatic and hyper-alert to potential problems (to the point that he borders on being a Lovable Coward at times), while Simmons is almost relentlessly cheerful and optimistic, and seemingly has little concept of personal danger when something new and interesting catches her attention. Notably, though, they're both The Smart Guy for the team.
  • American Horror Story: Asylum: Leo and Teresa, a pair of newlyweds exploring Briarcliff in the present day. Teresa is a horror fetishist eager to see the whole place, while Leo is somewhat more calm and careful, and questions the wisdom of going to investigate a strange noise.
  • Angel: In the early seasons, Wesley and Cordelia have this dynamic, as Wesley is nerdy and largely a Non-Action Guy and Cordelia retains some of her Lovable Alpha Bitch qualities from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. This mostly goes away in the later seasons after they both undergo significant Character Development, with Wesley taking a massive level in badass and Cordelia losing much of her vanity and materialism to become The Heart of Angel Investigations.
  • Arrow: Oliver Queen, the city's resident Vigilante Man is cynical, stoic, and rather broken thanks to five years in living hell, while his partner in crime Playful Hacker Felicity is dorky, plucky, and upbeat. (Though she's suffered a few tragedies of her own). Thankfully after a few years, her optimism has rubbed off on him and he's noticeably more hopeful about life.
  • The Closer: Scattered, frenetic, outrageously brilliant heroine Brenda Leigh Johnson and her husband, the levelheaded, patient, and rather low-key Fritz Howard.
  • Degrassi: The Next Generation: Brooding goth Eli and the zany unconventional Imogen, moreso while she's his Perky Female Minion as she's worrying about him too much when they were an official couple. Sunnyshine and happiness Becky played the platonic version with Eli and the romantic version with Adam. Although there it was more about energy than about ditzy or airheaded.
  • Donnie Loves Jenny: The titular pair, pragmatic Donnie Wahlberg and loopy Jenny McCarthy.
  • Firefly: Simon and Kaylee.
  • Inverted and platonic example in The Flash (2014): coworkers Cisco Ramon and Caitlin Snow. He is an enthusiastic and easily excitable guy, while she tends to be much more levelheaded and sensible.
  • Friends:
  • Gilmore Girls:
    • Luke and Lorelai own this trope, even when they weren't a couple.
    • Lorelai's neighbors are cool, calm, and collected Morey and his loud and gossipy wife Babette.
    • Lorelai had this relationship with most of her romantic interests. In fact, Max and Lorelai probably didn't stay together because he couldn't keep up with her, as Dean noted.
    • Luke and Nicole were a negative version of this, meant to be compared with Luke and Lorelei's relationship.
    • Go-Getter Girl Paris and her first boyfriend, Jamie. He couldn't keep up, so she leaves him and embarks on a May–December Romance with Silver Fox Asher Flemming, who is infinitely savvier.
    • Jimmy Mariano (Jess' father) and his girlfriend Sasha echo the Lorelei and Luke dynamic very accurately.
  • The Good Place has anxious philosophy professor Chidi and bouncy, self-professed Arizona Dirtbag Eleanor.
  • I Love Lucy: Features one of the earliest TV examples; scheming, rebellious housewife Lucy Ricardo constantly tries her damnedest to get into showbiz, while her husband Ricky (who knows she has no talent) acts as a wet blanket.

    Professional Wrestling 


  • Emmett and Elle in Legally Blonde: The Musical; less so in the movies, but still there.

    Video Games 
  • The Alliance Alive has three sets of protagonists, all of whom are variants on the trope. Galil is cautious, Azura is adventurous. Vivian is enthusiastic, Ignace is staid. Gene is cold, Rachel is impulsive.
  • Banjo-Kazooie has Banjo the sensible, level-headed bear and Kazooie the confident, short-tempered bird.
  • Borderlands 2 has Roland and Lilith. While Roland is straightforward and seemingly humorless, Lilith is snarky and outgoing. In this case, it's a rare example of exes, though they separated mainly due to their war with Handsome Jack getting in the way and the two still care about each other.
  • Death Stranding: Sam and Fragile. Sam is more stoic, withdrawn, and pragmatic about his job as a porter due to being essentially a normal man with no supernatural abilities that let him traverse the terrain more easily. Fragile is more energetic and preppy, and enjoys pushing Sam's buttons from time to time. She can also teleport, which adds to her more energetic image, allowing her to zip around and deliver her cargo much faster and with less physical effort than Sam.
  • Dragon Age:
    • Alistair and the Warden can be this in Origins.
      • So can Leliana and a more level-headed Warden.
      • A gender-inverted example can be Morrigan and a more enthusiastic Warden.
    • Nice!Hawke and Isabela in Dragon Age II, or Silly!Hawke and either Anders or Fenris.
      • Aggressive!Hawke and Merrill have some shades as well. Merrill also has platonic versions of this trope with Carver and Varric; subverted with Anders and Fenris, who often respond to her with aggression rather than calm.
    • Dorian Pavus and the Iron Bull in Dragon Age: Inquisition play with this trope. In battle, The Iron Bull is bombastic, louder than life, and very enthusiastic, in contrast to Dorian; in their free time, however, The Iron Bull is a lot more savvy, and is incredibly calm and calculated in contract to Dorian's chatty, highly-expressive nature.
      • Sera and a more level-headed Inquisitor are a lesbian version of this trope.
  • Zhou Yu and Xiao Qiao in Dynasty Warriors. Exactly the other way round with the "Little Conqueror" Sun Ce and Da Qiao. Actually, Sun Ce - Zhou Yu and Da Qiao - Xiao Qiao also qualify.
  • Ensemble Stars! has a male/male example: Midori is the perpetually tired, Only Sane Man savvy guy who is constantly being dragged into things by his club and unit leader, the oppressively energetic Love Freak Chiaki.
  • Two of the minor Masters participating in Fate/EXTRA's Holy Grail War. Having entered as a couple on the girl's suggestion, they find the rules prevent them from becoming a Battle Couple as she originally planned. The boyfriend realizes the full implications of what they've gotten themselves into much sooner, while the girl remains cheerful, optimistic and sunny.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy VII:
      • Though she dies at the end of the game's first half, Cloud Strife and Aerith Gainsborough from the original game fit in fairly well until then.
      • Vincent Valentine and Yuffie Kisaragi in the Final Fantasy VII Compilations, especially Dirge of Cerberus. Whether their relationship is romantic or an Inter Generational Friendship is a matter of speculation.
    • Squall/Rinoa and Irvine/Selphie from Final Fantasy VIII. He's a lot more pragmatic, experienced and aloof, while she's more green, energetic and cheerful.
    • Gender Inverted from Final Fantasy X with Tidus and Yuna.
  • Fire Emblem has MANY of these: Azelle and Tailtiu, Shannan and Patty/Daisy, Orson and Karin, Larum and Roy, Shanna and Roy or Dieck, Erk and Serra, Oswin and Serra, Lowen and Rebecca, Rennac and L'Arachel, Ephraim and L'Arachel, Innes and L'Arachel, Rhys and Mia... and after the remake, Boey and Mae.
    • As of Fire Emblem: Awakening, the newest examples are: Lissa and several guys she can marry (like Lon'qu, Frederick or a male Avatar), Nowi and almost everyone she can marry (specially Libra and Lon'qu), the Female Avatar and Lon'qu...
      • Subverted with Sumia and Gaius. Personality-wise, she's more of a Shrinking Violet so they'd be more likely to play out Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl... and yet she and Gaius play this trope to the very hilt as they look for honey to bake cakes and Hilarity Ensues.
      • Genderflipped with Henry and several of his prospect brides, particularly with Miriel, Tharja, Cherche, the aforementioned Sumia, a female Avatar, and even Olivia.
      • Almost any pairing that includes either girl!Morgan or Cynthia is this to the hilt. Special mention goes to Laurent, Gerome, and, in Cynthia's case only, a male Avatar.
    • Fire Emblem Fates also has several of these, whether in Hoshido or Nohr. Some of these are: Felicia and almost anyone but especially Jakob, Prince Xander, and almost anyone but especially Selena, Laslow and Peri, Elise and almost anyone, Hana and either Subaki or Prince Takumi, either Odin or Arthur with almost anyone, Azura and Keaton, Asugi and Sophie, Rhajat and Kiragi or Percy (gender-flipped), Forrest and Ophelia or Soleil...
    • Gaiden's remake, Echoes: Shadows of Valentia, plays this straight with Mae and Boey (a pigtailed Genki Girl and a dark-skinned Lovable Coward) as mentioned above, but subverts it with Zeke and Tatiana (they play it straight in the Memory Prism depicting how they met and their C support, but their B and A supports have Tatiana as an Insecure Love Interest and Zeke has to reassure her about his feelings for her.) Python and Forsyth count as an example between two guys (with a side dish of Homoerotic Subtext), and so do Tobin and Gray.
  • The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky - Estelle and Joshua, though Joshua isn't exactly physically inept. He IS a bracer, after all. He just prefers reading a book to hiking or fishing.
  • Mass Effect:
    • A female Shepard and Kaidan Alenko have this dynamic, especially if Shepard is a Renegade. Kaidan might kick some ass, but overall he's a pretty even-tempered guy.
    • Fem!Shepard and damn near any male team member could be said to have this dynamic; even if Shepard is Paragon, she's still arguably the toughest soldier in the entire galaxy. The only inversion is when she's teamed with Grunt.
    • Keiji and Kasumi in Mass Effect 2, though since Keiji died before the story began the only screen time we get is a recording of a message for Kasumi.
  • The Professor Layton series, in the second arc, pairs the Professor with Emmy Altava. She packs some serious martial arts skill to complement the Professor's sharp mind. Although the Professor himself is no slouch in a fight, and Emmy solves puzzles just as easily, they fit the trope.
  • From Psychonauts, Sasha Nein (that's the guy) and Milla Vodello, who are partners in the Psychonauts and Love Interests.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • The titular character and Amy Rose: a cocky speedster who gains the affection of a hyperactive fangirl.
    • This goes double and is plays more straight with Sonic's Darker and Edgier twin arch-rival Shadow with the sexually overt and shapely spy and partner Rouge the Bat. While the two may act like business partners, Rouge has a teasing playfulness that leads to near Slap-Slap-Kiss levels of retorts from the ultimate lifeform.
  • The Jedi Consular and Nadia Grell from Star Wars: The Old Republic. The Consular is a Jedi who perfectly embodies calmness and stoicism, while Nadia herself is their excitable Padawan who just loves exploring the new places her master takes her. Whether the relationship is romantic or platonic is up to the player.
  • This was the premise of the tag team of Ibuki and Rolento in Street Fighter X Tekken. However, in this case, she was contractually obligated to follow his orders. The dynamic can be seen in their mid-match banter.
  • Suikoden II has Shrinking Violet Hix and Fiery Redhead Tengaar. In the ending, she is seen dragging him along just like the girl in the trope picture.
  • Kyosuke Nanbu and Excellen Browning from Super Robot Wars.
  • Valkyria Chronicles: Homer Pieron and Edy Nelson. Although she's more of a Leeroy Jenkins rather than dumb, and he's mostly lucid until one appeals to his masochistic side.

    Visual Novels 

    Web Animation 
  • RWBY: The happy-go-lucky Nora and her Childhood Friends partner, the serious, deadpan Ren; Ren is serene, calm, soft-spoken and prefers to think before he acts, which balances and reins in Nora's passion-fueled, aggressive "act first think later" personality, while at the same time benefiting from her drive to bring him out of his shell. This leads to conflict during the Atlas Arc as Ren bottles his emotions while Nora expresses hers, leading to Ren shutting down and pushing people away, while Nora feels like she's losing her ability to understand Ren and, with it, her own ability to understand herself. They resolve the problem in Volume 8.

  • Gunnerkrigg Court: Andrew and Parley. This applies to their superpowers, too: Andrew spontaneously creates organization and solves problems, while Parley can teleport, but she has difficulty controlling her teleportation without Andrew's help.
  • More like Sarcastic Guy Energetic Girl, since he's not had too much experience, but Conrad and Toni from Hanna Is Not a Boy's Name count for their shippers.
  • Hero In Love: Pamina is The Chosen One fighting monsters to save the world, but she's also a bubbly teenage girl madly in love with her healer boyfriend, who is a much more rational Straight Man to her antics.
  • Hetalia: Axis Powers:
    • The Austro-Hungarian Empire, with Austria as a serious Team Dad and Hungary as a cheery and Hot-Blooded Team Mom.
    • Also, there are several Ho Yay versions: Spain and Romano, Germany and Italy, England and America, China and Korea, Lithuania and Poland...
    • Taiwan is this to China in a Drama CD, where they have a rather... weird interaction (She lectures him for being Totally Radical and loud, then ends up breaking his arm while attempting to fix his back). From the fourth volume on she's the energetic girl to pretty much everyone in Asia, whether males (China, Japan, HK, Macau) or females (Vietnam); the sole exception is Korea, because he's as energetic as she is.
    • The Netherlands and Belgium have a milder version of these dynamics.
  • Homestuck:
    • Nepeta (upbeat and irrepressible catgirl-roleplayer) and Equius (stern and classist Blue Blood).
    • Dave has this with Terezi and Jade; he hides most of his emotions in a layer of snark and irony, while Terezi is a constantly laughing Slasher Smiler and Jade is a Genki Girl Cute Witch.
  • Kristoph Gavin and Shirley Patton in Kristoph Gavin: Ace Attorney could be considered this.
  • The Lonely Vincent Bellingham has Luke and Ursula, two young children who are more or less adoptive siblings. He's very stoic and deadpan (and apparently a werewolf) while she's a silly Motor Mouth witch.
  • Ménage à 3 repeatedly evokes the trope, mostly in Gary's relationships. He is "savvy" in the sense of being deeply knowledgeable concerning geeky matters, but not by any other definition of the word; virtually any woman in the comic is energetic by comparison to him.
    • His relationship with Yuki seems to fit the trope but hits the problem that Yuki isn't just energetic, but is flat-out and rather dangerously crazy.
    • His relationship with Sonya rapidly collapses because she is a passion with a love of excitement and novelty, and she rapidly comes to find him simply boring.
    • Senna energetically drags him onto a flight to Paris and seduces him — but she has no respect at all for his brand of savviness.
    • His platonic friendship with Sandra (mostly depicted in spinoff comic Sandra on the Rocks) actually invokes the trope quite strongly, in that Sandra respects and needs Gary for his savviness in the geek world, and energetically pushes him into pursuing a career in videogames (and into her employer's drinks cabinet).
    • The exceptions are Gary's brief fling with Kiley and Friends with Benefits arrangement with Peggy; both are far more savvy than him. The latter relationship eventually becomes more serious, but by that time Gary is a bit more savvy and energetic.
    • And for variety — Erik seems to see his relationship with Zii in terms of this trope, but fails to anticipate the implications.
  • The two leads in A Miracle of Science. Benjamin is a snarky member of an agency that apprehends and controls Mad Scientists, a man with Dark and Troubled Past who doesn't smile for half of the story. Caprice is a bubbly, friendly, optimistic psychological profiler from Mars (meaning, more or less, superpowers in this setting, including an intelligence that is at least broader than normal human, although Benjamin is pretty smart, too, just not a part of a Hive Mind). They hunt a Mad Scientist.
  • Nebula: Mars has enough Genre Savvy enough to be the Only Sane Man of the cast, while Earth is the most social one of the group and the one to kick-start things into action through her sheer enthusiasm.
  • Ozy and Millie plays with this. Millie is just as smart and introspective as Ozy. She just doesn't see this as an obligation to act mature.
  • Pixie and Brutus: Brutus is the worldly, grizzled veteran to Pixie's cheerful, naive kitten.
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • Roy and Celia fit this description, though it's worth noting that this is an example where the girl isn't any less intelligent than the guy, just not as down-to-earth (pun not intended); at worst, Celia is just a little naïve when it comes to humans, what with her being a sylph and all.
    • The comic presents a villainous example with Bozzok and Crystal. Bozzok is intelligent and cunning while Crystal is bloodthirsty and incredibly dumb.
  • Sword Princess Amaltea: Princess Amaltea is a Hot-Blooded Royal Brat that fights before and thinks later while Prince Ossian is a more sensitive, down to earth character with a practical mind. Ossian very often calls Amaltea for her impulsiveness and she answers with sarcasm.

    Web Original 
  • Quincy Bolthouse and Megan Kher from the Playdom game Gardens of Time. Megan is more of a Naïve Newcomer than The Ditz, though, and she has a huge crush on Quincy that he's oblivious to. For a while, anyway. And later, we have Deadpan Snarker Richard Wakefield and grown-up Genki Girl Lulu Milton.
  • Kakos Industries has the business-oriented and snarky Corin Deeth the III and the high energy and girly Hailey Sollamanari have this dynamic for a while until they "break up" under some complex circumstances. They were less romantic than they did occasionally have sex with each other.
  • Channel Awesome:
  • With superheroes the key part of the Whateley Universe, it happens all the time. Jade Sinclair (Generator) and Stephen Lee (Thuban). Toni Chandler (Chaka) and Scott Emerson (Thunderbird). Anna Parsons (Aquerna) and Jerry Walsh (Hazmat). Since Hazmat is an inventor and Aquerna is a bubbly babbler with squirrel powers, they may be the classic example so far.

    Western Animation 
  • Hank Pym and Janet Van Dyne in The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes.
  • Tyrone and Uniqua in The Backyardigans. The episode "Monster Detectives" is a good example of this. Just look at what a Deadpan Snarker Tyrone is and what a Genki Girl Uniqua is.
  • Bob's Burgers: Bob Belcher is the sensible and down-to-Earth one to the enthusiastic, fun-loving Linda.
  • Grumpy Bear when paired with pretty much any other Care Bear. Cheer Bear in particular.
  • The duo of Cow and Chicken. Chicken is normally pessimistic, sarcastic, and serves as the Only Sane Man of the family (and the entire show to be exact), while his "little" sister, Cow, is normally excitable, playful, and is quite prone to being super emotional most of the time.
  • Dexter and his sister Dee Dee in Dexter's Laboratory. Dee Dee is energetic and imaginative while her little brother is serious and intellectual.
  • Zak and Wheezie in Dragon Tales. Unfortunately for Zak, they happen to be literally joined at the hip.
  • DuckTales (2017):
    • Either Huey, Dewey, or Louie will be the Savvy Guy to Webby's Energetic Girl whenever she pairs up with one of the triplets. Although Dewey is more energetic than both Huey and Louie.
    • Donald Duck and his twin sister Della.
  • In season 10 of The Fairly OddParents!, Timmy Turner and Chloe Carmichael become this as Chloe becomes a new major character in the show.
  • Quoted above: Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends: Mac and Goo, though they weren't ever actually dating.
  • Glitch Techs: Five is the Savvy Guy to Miko's Energetic Girl, as he's usually calmer and more focused on planning while Miko is more energetic and tends to rush into situations without thinking.
  • Gravity Falls has a non-romantic example with its two leads, Brother–Sister Team Dipper and Mabel. Dipper's cynical and stern personality makes a contrasting pairing with Mabel's cheerful and upbeat one.
  • Green Eggs and Ham (2019) has the "BADGUYS", McWinkle and Gluntz. McWinkle is serious, mostly stoic, no-nonsense, and always focused on his job while Gluntz is happy-go-lucky, hyperactive, enthusiastic, and can get a bit distracted at times.
  • Reversed in The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, with Billy being a Keet and Mandy the Deadpan Snarker.
  • Henry and June in KaBlam!. Though as the series went on, the roles ended up getting reversed.
    • A sibling example would be Larry and Loopy from the Life With Loopy segments.
  • Kaeloo has energetic Genki Girl Kaeloo and intelligent Mr. Cat.
  • Bugs Bunny and Lola Bunny in The Looney Tunes Show. Of course, this being the Looney Tunes, Lola isn't just energetic, she's flat-out insane.
  • The Magic School Bus has Arnold and Wanda; Wanda is an energetic tomboy, and Arnold is the kid who always thinks he "should have stayed home to-day."
  • Maya & Miguel: Miguel can never discourage his sister from doing anything he believes to be dangerous.
  • The Polar Opposite Twins Scooter and Skeeter in Muppet Babies (1984).
  • A Vitriolic Best Buds example: in Numberjacks, Three is always bouncy, full of energy, and always eager to go out on a mission (even when she's deemed "too small a number" in the earlier episodes). Four on the other hand would rather spend his time tinkering things on the sofa and is overall a calm and collected Numberjack... however, he does get nervous when he's asked to go on a mission.
  • Jeremy and Candace on Phineas and Ferb. He's about the nicest, most level-headed guy in the world; she's an obsessive, neurotic, and incredibly high-strung Genki Girl.
  • Ready Jet Go!: Mitchell is the Savvy Guy to Mindy and Lillian's Energetic Girls. Mitchell is the Only Sane Man of their little group and is more logical while they're both energetic and easily convinced.
  • A sibling example of this trope is Chuckie and Kimi from Rugrats.
  • She-Ra and the Princesses of Power has Entrapta as the quirky Energetic Girl to Hordak's serious Savvy Guy.
  • Star vs. the Forces of Evil has Marco the safety-minded regular guy, and Star the hyper-energetic magical girl.
  • Inverted in Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go! with No-Nonsense Nova with the Jokester Sparx. Basically he just teases her, until she shuts him up by giving him a good punch.
  • Teen Titans:
  • Thomas & Friends:
    • Mavis was the Energetic Girl to Toby's Savvy Guy in her debut season; she was feisty and full of her own ideas and therefore wouldn't take advice from anyone, while he was her shrewd, level-headed mentor who would get frustrated by her antics.
    • Thomas and Rosie in the episode Thomas and the Birthday Mail: Rosie was a high-spirited and boisterous young engine whose attempts to be like Thomas made him feel rather annoyed; Thomas by contrast was much blunter and more serious.
    • Connor and Caitlin in general. Connor often comes off as the more laid-back and sensible of the two, while Caitlin has a lively spirit to her and gets excited more easily.
  • Total Drama:
    • Cody and Sierra, much to Cody's chagrin.
    • In a non-romantic example, Noah and Izzy are sometimes used as foils for each other.
  • Total Drama Presents: The Ridonculous Race:
    • Jacques and Josee, the Ice Dancers, is a darker example. Josee is often impulsive and Jacques attempts to be the voice of reason.
    • Similarly, Ryan and Stephanie, the Daters. Stephanie is a Competition Freak while Ryan is more laid back.
  • Squeak and Bubble in Tube Mice. Squeak is literally a Country Mouse, who finds London fascinating but is still rather cautious and pragmatic, Bubble is a City Mouse who drags him on adventures.
  • Twelve Forever has this dynamic between the energetic Reggie and her more levelheaded male best friend (Shane in the pilot, Todd in the series).
  • Villainous has the Evil Genius Dr. Flug and the Perky Female Dumb Muscle Demencia.
  • Work It Out Wombats!: Malik is the Savvy Guy to Zadie's Energetic Girl. Malik is a careful planner, while Zadie usually usurps his thoughts with snap decisions.


Video Example(s):


Marlin and Dory

While Dory is energetic and sings on a whim, Marlin is cynical and serious.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (12 votes)

Example of:

Main / SavvyGuyEnergeticGirl

Media sources: