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Stock Light-Novel Everyman

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This is an offshoot of the Stock Light-Novel Hero that stars an Everyman and Non-Action Guy. He's usually in a world that's Like Reality, Unless Noted or Urban Fantasy. He can have a variety of "mundane" jobs, such as an Ordinary High-School Student, Salaryman, NEET or a Hikikomori not far from what we'd see in Real Life. Sometimes he's even a Light Novel author or videogame creator himself.

The main and most important difference between the Everyman and his Hero counterpart is that fighting is rare for him. While the Stock Light-Novel Hero is usually expected to fight or defeat a Villain of the Week or Arc Villain and frequently gains cool or stylish new abilities to combat new foes, the Stock Light-Novel Everyman is either a Non-Action Guy or he is expected to solve more mundane problems. The sort of problems he and his True Companions encounter are defeated with words or guile rather than fists. His Unique Protagonist Assets are based on social, academic or career talents, such as having Awesomeness by Analysis or being The Heart or Living Emotional Crutch of his social group.

For the Heroes, the story often picks up right when there's some sort of Call to Adventure, or they begin training/education for some sort of special or important destiny. The Everyman's story, however, starts when he's made some brand new acquaintances, made some sort of achievement or found himself in the middle of some kind of trouble, mystery or wacky misadventures, but otherwise his normal, mundane life is uninterrupted.

Appearance-wise, he differs from both the Stock Light-Novel Hero and Stock Shōnen Hero, in that he is often not quite as Bishōnen as the former, but also not as wild, unkempt or macho as the latter. He is Ridiculously Average right down to his appearance. Some examples even have "dead" or drooping eyes that make them seem aloof, hostile or disinterested or Idiot Hair that emotes on its own.

Also, unlike his "Hero" counterparts, he often has more Classical Anti-Hero qualities: more flaws, doubts or moral failings. Of course, when backed into a corner, he will usually do the right thing, and is much more likely to act on Enlightened Self-Interest than genuine altruism.

Like his other counterpart, however, this type of character also often gains a "harem" of Love Interests who fight or compete over him, and in some cases, gaining said harem is the Inciting Incident and focus of the story. Because of this, some examples may outright overlap with a standard Harem Genre protagonist.

Compare and contrast the Unfazed Everyman, which some of these characters can be if they have a particularly strong Weirdness Censor.


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  • The Quintessential Quintuplets: Fuutarou Uesugi, who despite debuting in a manga, fits this trope to a T. He starts off as an Ordinary High-School Student with a Face of a Thug who is academically brilliant but comes from a poverty stricken background with his sister and father. However his life takes a turn when he gets hired to be the personal tutor of the Nakano quintuplets, who are on the verge of failing their classes. The series follows his exploits on not only trying to teach the quintuplets but getting several of them to accept him as their tutor too. Unwanted Harem aspects are also in play as several of the quintuplets all have crushes on him and one of them is shown to end up marrying him in a flashforward with her identity unknown.

  • Bakemonogatari: Koyomi Araragi qualifies as both this trope and a Stock Light-Novel Hero depending on the arc. The vast majority of the time, the problem of the week needs to be solved by out-smarting or out-talking the threat, but sometimes Koyomi will need to make use of his vast array of vampiric abilities to fight it. Violence almost never works permanently, however, as it usually only makes the problem temporarily go away and return in an even stronger form later. His efforts still endear him to a number of beautiful young women, although this in itself leads to problems since the very second arc ends with him becoming an Official Couple with the original Girl of the Week, and thus all of the other girls are Hopeless Suitors and some don't take it very well.
  • Classroom of the Elite: Kiyotaka Ayanokouji is revealed to be a deconstruction: Multiple hidden talents? He was trained at childhood to be the best at everything, to the point he only cares about winning. Gaining the attraction of women? Calculated moves to earn their trust and make them easier for him to manipulate. Moral conscience? He has no such thing. He only wants to protect himself and will only help people if it advances said least until he starts making genuine bonds with people like Karuizawa and Airi. And his insistence on having an ordinary life? All just to get out of the influence of his obsessed father, who believes that he's borderline invincible and unstoppable (which is true), making Kiyotaka vow to find a way to get his father disinterested in him.
  • In Eromanga Sensei: Masamune Izumi is an Ordinary High-School Student who is also an esteemed light novel author. He lives with his step-sister Sagiri who is a Hikikomori who never leaves her room. Having no artistic talent himself, Masamune hires an anonymous artist known as "Eromanga Sensei" to draw for him, but discovers said artist is actually his own little sister. As the series progresses other girls start getting introduced which form Masamune's Unwanted Harem whereby they crush on him and try to win over his affection, which may or may not include his own Little Sister Heroine.
  • Gamers! (2015): This is parodied by way of subversion. While Amano has the plain appearance and Unwanted Harem, he lacks every other traits like skill or exceptional moral character, and the show repeatedly demonstrates that he has no interest in either. One short scene further cements this by demonstrating that a minor character, Misumi, actually has every cliche and characteristic that the standard Light Novel protagonist would possess, but the narrative isn't concerned with his story at all.
  • Kyon from Haruhi Suzumiya can be considered the Trope Codifier, since he predates most other examples while essentially solidifying this character type for light novels; he's an Ordinary High-School Student who initially has resigned himself to living an ordinary life, but it isn't long before he finds himself roped into a club where the other members are definitely not ordinary. He's a major Deadpan Snarker (which extends to his narration) and often acts as the Straight Man to Haruhi's antics. He's also a Non-Action Guy due to lacking any powers or fighting ability like Yuki or Koizumi, so he typically has to use his wits to get out of sticky situations. While he doesn't necessarily have a harem, several female characters show varying degrees of romantic interest in him, and he has the most romantic tension with Haruhi herself.
  • Higehiro: The protagonist, Yoshida, is a salaryman who, after being rejected by his crush, gets drunk one night and decides to let a homeless 17-year-old girl that he met on the street, Sayu, live with him. He turns down her offers to repay him with sexual favors, and instead proves to be a Nice Guy who genuinely wants to help her resolve her issues and become a better person. In addition, Yoshida cleans up his behavior and appearance after meeting Sayu and this prompts two other women (including the woman who originally rejected him) to much more aggressively pursue him especially after they learn about Sayu. It's repeatedly noted how wonderful and hard-working Sayu is, although he tends to remain oblivious to others' true feelings and sometimes his niceness comes back to bite everyone.
  • Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions!: Yuuta Togashi is a firm Only Sane Man, who views his Chuunibyou past as an Old Shame and wants to push it out of his life, which contrasts his peers who still actively partake in it. In particular, he serves as the Cloudcuckoolander's Minder towards the female lead, Rikka Takanashi. The series follows the exploits of Yuuta trying to pull Rikka into reality and common sense, while she tries to urge him back to the Chuunibyou life of fun and make belief. While he doesn't exactly have an Unwanted Harem, his main supporting cast is comprised of all girls.
  • Monster Girl Doctor: Glenn Leitbeit is a "monster" doctor whose clientele is exclusively female. The show not being combat-centered, Glenn's skills as a doctor are what are needed to solve most dilemmas, such as curing a Mermaid with clogged gills, helping a harpy deliver an egg through a blocked duct, or curing a dragoness of a fatal tumor. This, along with his Nice Guy and unassuming personality, cause almost all of these patients to fall in love with him.
  • My Youth Romantic Comedy Is Wrong, as I Expected: Hachiman Hikigaya is a Genre Savvy student that usually battles against getting too involved, mostly being an Ineffectual Loner and Snark Knight, but he eventually becomes a hero by his own: he's a bookworm who has the ability to quickly analyse and come to a fairly accurate conclusion of a person's hidden motivations and personality traits. Being obligated to help students as part of the Service Club, Hachiman is rediscovered for the others as a Misunderstood Loner with a Heart of Gold, the main reason why eventually he gets an Unwanted Harem, starting with his club mates Yui Yuigahama and Yukino Yukinoshita.
  • Oreimo: Kyousuke Kousaka is a Ridiculously Average Guy and an Aloof Big Brother to his little sister Kirino who is The Ace, until one day he discovers that she's a Closet Otaku with a fetish for Little Sister Heroine eroge and lives a double life. Upon this discovery, the two siblings gradually start to reconnect after being estranged from each other for years and Kyousuke gets drawn into her lifestyle, such as Kirino forcing him to care for her virtual pets and characters. In addition, Kyousuke is a Chick Magnet with lots of girls crushing on, including Kirino who very much displays Big Brother Attraction combined with being a Clingy Jealous Girl towards all the other girls of the Unwanted Harem.
  • The Pet Girl of Sakurasou: Sorata Kanda is a Ridiculously Average Guy who finds himself in a dormitory of talented peers and constantly feels Overshadowed by Awesome, especially towards the female lead, Mashiro Shiina who is ridiculously talented at everything. However he does find himself as The Heart of the group and the personal carer for Mashiro who despite her talents, lacks even the most fundamental common sense and ability to care for herself. While he is Oblivious to Love, the Unwanted Harem aspect is downplayed as aside from Mashiro, only one other girl has displayed interest in him.
  • Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai has its protagonist Sakuta Azusagawa, an overall Nice Guy, though rather stoic and a Deadpan Snarker, a seemingly Ordinary High-School Student with Hidden Depths, quite calm, introspective and thoughtful. He is very selfless and with traits of a Misunderstood Loner with a Heart of Gold. However, he also qualifies as a Stock Light-Novel Hero; while this is not primarily an action series, Sakuta still has his action moments, such as the fight against Jerk Jock Tomoe's suitor, and overall the moments he must help others who are affected by Adolescence Syndrome.
  • When Supernatural Battles Became Commonplace: This story is both a parody and deconstruction that analyzes the differences between this trope and the Stock Light-Novel Hero. Andou, the sole male member of the Literature Club who all gain powers during a Mass Empowering Event, refuses to allow he or his friends to use their abilities for combat. He, in fact, can't use his abilities for combat, since its first form is only cosmetic and its second form only harms him. He believes that superpowers are meant to be used to make life cooler and better, not being used to fight other people. This is despite the fact that outside of his circle, all of the other superpowered people are caught within a "battle royale"-type game which forces them to battle one-another. Not only are Andou and his friends unaware of this game, but they have no interest in looking into it regardless. Even when one of the antagonists attacks them and involves them in it, Andou solves the problem by out-witting them.
  • Toradora!: Ryuuji Takasu who is in all respects an Ordinary High-School Student aside from having a Face of a Thug and with a knack for household duties like cooking and being a tailor. His life takes a turn when he becomes acquainted with the Girl Next Door, Taiga Aisaka, who is irresponsible, rude, and unorganized. When both of them find out about each other's respective crushes for other classmates, Minori and Yusaku, they form a pact to help each other win over their crushes (and in Taiga's case for Ryuuji to help her out with cooking and chores). However, this in turn leads the two of them to spend much time in each other's company, leading others to mistake them for a couple.