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Manga / Lies of the Sheriff Evans: Dead or Love

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In the Wild Wild West, where the strong make the rules...

Lies of the Sheriff Evans: Dead or Love is a Comedy/Adventure/Romance manga by Mizuki Kuriyama, published in Shounen Sunday.

It follows Elmore Evans, sheriff of Markwest during the days of the Wild West. An excellent gunslinger, a dedicated lawman, and one of the most stoic men in the West, Evans seems like the perfect sheriff.

On the outside.

In reality, he became a gunslinger and a sheriff for the sole purpose of becoming popular with women. With the help of his legitimately amazing gunslinging, excellent poker-face, and his near-perfect memory of his father's advice on women, he has, for the most part, completely failed.

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The series details his life, from his bad luck with women, to various outlaws he's had to deal with, to various misunderstandings he's gotten into.

Along for the ride are his rival/love interest, the Bounty Hunter Phoebe Oakleynote , who is just as bad as Evans when it comes to romance and his deputy Ted Hall, who pretty much worships Evans (and has no idea how much of the Evans he knows is an act). Other characters includes Kurt, Evans' father and source of his life philosophy, Matthew James, an ex-vigilante that's Evans' polar opposite (and way more successful with girls) and Melissa Rain, a newspaper reporter who always seems to get the facts wrong when dealing with Evans.

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Lies of the Sheriff Evans contains examples of following tropes:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Matthew James' fans are as in love for him as obnouxiously protective, to the point they'll bad mouth Evans at first sight or insult Oakley to defend Matt (who's visibly annoyed by their attitude, take note).
  • Birds of a Feather: What Evans and Oakley actually are, even if both can't act properly about that. While he's always looking for a pretty date, Evans will always stop to help Oakley in some way, even if it's by a total fluke (and generally is). By her part, Oakley takes any chance to show she's his "rival", but ends up helping Evans in a way or other. None of them have the guts to call the other to a date.
  • Blessed with Suck: Even if he became a stoic lawman just to be popular with women, Evans is legitimately a good sheriff and a terrific gunslinger. Sadly, his inability to get a date comes from both the way he interprets his old man's teachings about girls and from how highly people think of him. Even if he doesn't notice/doesn't have time to act, Evans is popular with women, but some circumstance always gets in his way (she's too young, too vain, a criminal etc). Being popular in general mean he must always keep up his stoic facade, so he sometimes has problems doing even the most simple of tasks (like buying porn), as he's afraid of being caught.
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  • The Cavalry: The US Cavalry show up to save the day during the train arc. The reason why they showed up also ends up being important: Mathy's father called for them to help, and personally accompanied them, boarding the train and facing off against Evans (who he thought was a kidnapper, and vice versa), proving that he really does care about Mathy.
  • Everyone Can See It: Not everyone per se, but on several occasions others have pointed out how obvious Oakley's feelings for Evans are or even that they look like a couple.
  • Face of a Thug: Deputy US Marshal Abby Earp, while attractive, permanently looks like she's angry or glaring, resulting in her being incredibly self-conscious. Evans, being Evans, doesn't notice and planned to ask her out. His father ends up beating him to the punch.
  • The Gunslinger: Many, but Evans and Oakley are two of the best, with Evans having trained with his father since he was a boy, and Oakley having already won various shooting contests when she was only 10.
  • Hyper-Competent Sidekick: For all his fanboying, Ted is actually a very competent deputy, not rarely even more deductive and inquisitive than Evans or other characters. Many cases are solved by his detective skills.
  • Identical Stranger: While there is a significant age difference between the two, Mathy Bridges looks extremely similar to Oakley, to the point where she can easily pass as her daughter.
  • Last-Name Basis: Very few people refer to Evans or Oakley by their first names
  • Lemony Narrator: The narrator spends more time pointing out lies and making fun of the characters than they do actually narrating.
  • No Name Given: Parodied. Kurt Evans, Elmore's father, left when Evans grew up, saying he was planning to become a wandering, nameless gunslinger in order to impress women. When they next meet, he is going by "Kurt the Nameless". Oakley notes that Kurt is a name.
  • Mistaken for Cheating: Melissa believes that Evans was in a relationship with Miranda Kelly, a famous actress. When she runs into Evans again, he and Oakley are Undercover as Lovers, claiming that they are a couple who have been married for over a decade with a ten-year-old daughter. This leads her to believe that he was having an affair with Miranda.
  • Oblivious to Love: Evans and Oakley are equally incapable of realizing the other's feelings for them.
  • Porn Stash: Evans has one, though he frequently finds himself having to dispose of it to keep Oakley and others from finding out.
  • Master of the Mixed Message: With shades of Poor Communication Kills. This whole manga in a nutshell. Evans' problems in general are pretty much caused by his terrible communication and comprehension abilities, aggravated by his almost perfect poker-face, what makes him hard to read. Oakley herself isn't better. Luckily, depending of the situation, Evans can pulls out a win, as improbable as it could be.
  • The Rival: Oakley considers herself to be Evans' rival, ever since he handed her her first defeat in a shooting competition when they were younger. She takes it so seriously that she'll bypass several other closer towns with sheriffs just to drag a bounty to Evans, for the sole purpose of showing off and claiming she's better than him.
  • Undercover as Lovers: Evans and Oakley pretend to be husband and wife during the train arc, in order to smuggle Mathy Bridges, the kidnapped daughter of a banker, past the kidnappers checking every passenger getting on the train, by pretending she's their daughter. The irony is that both Evans and Oakley secretly enjoyed to be "married", even for a few hours.
  • The Un-Smile: Thanks to her resting scowl, when Abby Earp tries to put someone at ease by smiling, it just looks like she's plotting to kill them.
  • What You Are in the Dark: Almost every time Evans has a chance to get with a woman, his legitimate desire to do right gets in the way, be it that the woman turns out to be a criminal, or he is too busy trying to catch a criminal to go on a date.
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