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We're all familiar with The Smurfette Principle and The One Guy: when creators throws in one person of a certain gender into cast that is otherwise the opposite gender. However, this trope is odd because in this case the token is the main character, with most if not all of their supporting cast being the opposite.

See The One Guy and The Smurfette Principle. May relate to Never a Self-Made Woman. For the musical equivalent, see Male Band, Female Singer. Harem Genre stories usually feature this dynamic, with the added bonus that the supporting cast all have some romantic connection with the lead. Compare to White Male Lead, Smurfette Breakout, and Human-Focused Adaptation.


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    Multiple Media 
  • The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (And the movie adaptations and other media inspired by it) usually feature Dorothy Gale as the main character in a team composed by The Scarecrow, The Tin Man, The Cowardly Lion and Toto the dog.

    Anime and Manga 
  • Cipher Academy: Iroha is the protagonist and the first male student at an otherwise all-female school for cryptography. However, his gender is of little importance. He doesn't even stand out visually, as he is very feminine-looking (moreso than several of the girls) and the school has unisex, military-style uniforms. It's even stated Iroha is often mistaken to be a girl, but the story doesn't always bother to show which characters know or not.
  • In Dog Days, aside from the male hero, Cinque Izumi, there is rarely another boy in sight with the cast full of girls. Unsurprisingly he acquires a harem over time.
  • Fly Me to the Moon, while being a romance anime with a male protagonist surrounded by beautiful women, is not actually part of the Harem Genre. Beyond the main couple Nasa and Tsukasa, the rest of the supporting cast is made up of the Arisugawa sisters at the bathhouse, plus Tsukasa's foster sister Chitose and her maids. All of them are mostly Shippers On Deck for Nasa and Tsukasa.
  • Ghost in the Shell: The Major is the only female member of Section 9. She might as well be the only member of Section 9 given the margin by which she outperforms all of them.
  • Season 2 of Kemono Friends features Kyururu, the lone boy and Token Human in a cast made up of Little Bit Beastly animal girls.
  • KonoSuba has the protagonist Kazuma with the rest of the cast of girls making up his own personal Unwanted Harem.
  • In No Game No Life, Sora is the main protagonist and also The One Guy surrounded by a cast of girls. Though the Harem Genre elements are greatly downplayed and almost always take a backseat.
  • In Ouran High School Host Club, Haruhi is the female main character among an all-male cast. Justified as the host club is exclusively male group and through an odd series of events Haruhi ends up pulling a Sweet Polly Oliver.
  • Prétear is one of the very few Magical Girl anime featuring a team of heroes almost entirely composed by men, with Himeno, the only female member, as the main character.
  • In Sword Art Online, has Kirito as The Hero and the supporting cast of girls making up his own personal Battle Harem. The only other significant guy is Klein and he's only there half the time. He gains a solid Deuteragonist in Eugeo during Alicization (and is even considered an honorary member of the harem in spinoffs), but even then he drops out halfway in due to his death.
  • Sekei, the main character from Time Stop Hero, is the only male in his party. Further, most recurring characters are female, too.
  • To Love Ru originally had a fairly gender-balanced supporting cast, but most of guys end up Demoted to Extra as the series became almost exclusively focused on Rito Yuuki and the many female characters that are all members of his Unwanted Harem.
  • Yo-kai Watch: Shadowside stars Natsume, the daughter of Nate and Katie from the original series, alongside a cast mainly consisting of male humans and youkai.

    Comic Books 
  • Y: The Last Man: The plot is centered around the last two male mammals on Earth: Yorick and his pet monkey Ampersand.

    Fan Works 
  • A common plot in several My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic stories is to have Twilight Sparkle be replaced with Dusk Shine, her Rule 63 counterpart. Best exemplified by the canceled The Unexpected Love Life of Dusk Shine.
  • Infinity Train: Blossoming Trail is focused on Chloe Cerise (who only gets 5 focus episodes in the first season of Pokémon Journeys and the story took place before her second one) with most of the supporting protagonists are male: from her partners on the Infinity Train (Atticus and Lexi) to the three who hold the most guilt on how Chloe was treated (her father, Goh and Ash).
  • The main story of Pokémon Reset Bloodlines follows Ash Ketchum and his female companions/eventual love interests. The group is thus far comprised by Misty, Iris and Anabel, and will eventually be joined by Serena, May and Dawn.

    Fairy Tales 
  • In The Seven Ravens, the main character is the only female daughter of a family with seven sons.

    Films — Animated 
  • Barbie in the Nutcracker: Clara is the protagonist, as well as the only female character in the four-person traveling party to find the Sugarplum Princess.
  • Kaena: The Prophecy the titular character is the only female character besides of the Big Bad having an active role in the plot of the movie, featuring a mostly male cast.
  • Mulan: The titular hero is the star of her movie, and the only major female character in general. This is justified due to the story taking place in Imperial China, where Mulan has to pretend she's a man to join the army.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Labyrinth, the protagonist Sarah is also the only major female character from that movie.
  • The Lara Croft: Tomb Raider movies star Angelina Jolie as the titular heroine, but pretty much all other characters are men.
  • Subverted in the film A League of Their Own, where a wartime shortage of athletic males compels baseball teams to field teams of women. While former player Jimmy Dugan is the team manager for the Peaches, he's a faithless drunkard; firebrand catcher Dottie Hinson fulfills the managerial role much more than Dugan.
  • In Rogue One, Jyn Erso is the female leader of an all-male team of rebels.
  • Chicago investigator VI Warshawski decides to track down her date's killer, especially upon becoming in loco parentis to his Heartwarming Orphan, named Kit. She's mostly on her own in this case, with some help from the mostly-male Chicago Police. Aside from Kit, the only other significant female in the film is the Big Bad, who doesn't appear until the film's climax.
  • Wonder Woman (2017): Diana is the main protagonist and the only woman in her main band of five.

  • Vin in Mistborn is the main character as well as the only prominent female character. In-universe, she mentions that females are scarce on thieving crews, and when she was a child her brother instilled in her that she was a thief first and a girl second.

    Live-Action TV 

    Video Games 
  • Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon: Miriam is the only female member of the playable cast and is also revealed to be the protagonist to the companion game Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night. She's the first recruited character in the main story and later becomes the main playable character in Nightmare Mode and the only character playable in the final stage and boss fight, in which the game's Decoy Protagonist, Zangetsu, has made a Face–Heel Turn and needs the other characters to Beat the Curse Out of Him.
    • Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night: As above, Miriam is the only heroic major female character, with other women either acting in a support or villainous role. The female character with the second-most screen time turns out to be a traitor and becomes the first part of the Final Boss battle at the end of the game.
  • For the first Dino Crisis game, you control Regina for the whole game, and not only being a sole female in her team, she is also the only named female character in the game. Averted for the second game, as Dylan is also playable and being a co-protagonist alongside Regina.
  • Zig-zagged in Drakengard 3: The player character Zero is female and her allies are a dragon and the Disciples that become her Battle Harem, all male. However, the antagonist group, the Intoners, are all female and get at least as much focus as the Disciples—some are even Promoted to Playable in the DLC, whereas the Disciples are just Assist Characters.
  • Drawn to Life: Though not necessarily the protagonist, Mari is the most important Non-Player Character in the game as well as one of the only three plot-important female Raposa characters in the first game. It's more apparent when she becomes the mayor, taking her father's role as the leader of the village, and then even more so during the second game, when only the plot-important Raposa are around and the other two female Raposa, Heather and Dr. Cure, are missing for the entire length of the plot.
  • Ensemble Stars!: Anzu is the only female in Yumenosaki taking the Producer course, and you play as her to help manage the students under her care. She also may just be the protagonist of the entire Ensemble series, considering her role in the pregame lore of Ensemble Girls!.
    • The Transfer Student fills this role in Ensemble Girls!, being the only male student in a recently-integrated One-Gender School. His job, while getting aquainted with his new schoolmates, is also to help them reconcile after the fallout of said pregame lore.
  • Virginia is the only female party member in Wild ARMs 3, and also the main protagonist of the game.

    Visual Novels 

  • The Girl of the Golden West: "The Girl" is almost never called by her actual name, the reference being so unambiguous. The only other female character appearing onstage is an Indian maid.

    Western Animation 
  • In Grojband, one episode has Corey appointing their only female member, Laney, as the band leader so they can qualify for playing at a feminism festival. Turns out Laney is a very competent leader.
  • Betty Boop is the sole female character in most of her shorts. All of her recurring supporting characters (Bimbo, Koko the Clown, Pudgy and Grampy) and most of the minor characters in her shorts are male.
  • In the first book of Infinity Train, Tulip is the female main character and Token Human, but the other members of her group are male nonhumans (specifically a dog and synchronized pair of robots). The development from pilot to series ended up adding one recurring character that's a female cat and the villain of the first season turns out to be another human woman.
  • Lincoln Loud of The Loud House is the main character, and the only brother in a family of ten sisters. However, Lincoln's male friend Clyde and father Lynn Sr. are also regular characters.
  • On The Perils of Penelope Pitstop, Penelope is the only woman in the main cast.
  • Star vs. the Forces of Evil: Star Butterfly is the only female character in Marco's group of friends in the first season, before Jana and Jackie also became part of the main cast.
  • The titular character of Steven Universe is the only boy in the Crystal Gems, unless one counts Lion (a magical animal, who's sapient but doesn't talk). Justified in this case because the Gems are a One-Gender Race, Steven being male because he's a Half-Human Hybrid. The only other human in the Crystal Gems is Connie, Steven's best friend, who is coincidentally female. One could also consider Steven the only male main character, depending on if you include his father, Greg.
  • In most of the episodes of Maggie and the Ferocious Beast, Maggie is the only female character among the main cast, composed by the male Ferocious Beast and the male pig Hamilton.