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Western Animation / Night Hood

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"My grandsonnote  only wishes he was THIS classy."

Night Hood (aka Les exploits d'Arsène Lupin) was a French-Canadian animated series inspired by the Arsène Lupin novels by Maurice Leblanc. Set in the 1930s, Lupin is aided by his assistant Grognard. Getting involved in his exploits are two reporters, Kelly Kincaid and Max Leblanc. Inspector Ganimard and Sgt. Folenfant seek to capture him. Lupin himself opposes the schemes of billionaire arms industrialist H.R. Karst, the devious May Hem and a tough as nails thug known only as Steel.

This series has examples of:

  • The Ace: Lupin, naturally, for the majority of the series. And it works.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Kelly and Lupin have a bit of UST going on... well, as much as a YTV show can have, at any rate.
  • Animation Bump: As good as the animation for the actual show is, the intro is phenomenal.
  • Animesque: Mostly the opening, which is gorgeous.
  • Arms Dealer: Karst, who does it both legitimately and illegally.
  • Badass Cape: Part of Lupin iconic get-up. However, he keeps it on only when it's practical.
  • Badass Driver: Grognard's driving skills save the day quite a few times.
  • The Baroness: May Hem, who routinely is involved in Honey Trap schemes.
  • Bifauxnen: Kelly never wears women's clothing. The girliest thing she sports is a set of pink pajamas. She even wears a tuxedo in the episode "The Diva's Diamonds".
  • Bound and Gagged: As an Intrepid Reporter, Kelly ends up trussed up and in peril several times. The opening starts with her being thrown bound and gagged in a car by Steel.
  • Bumbling Henchmen Duo: Gila and Diesel, Karst's rather incompetent henchmen.
  • Cane Fu: Lupin's cane isn't just for show...
  • Calling Card: Lupin's left these so many times, Karst just has to leave a fake card at a crime he planned, and Ganimard and Folenfant are on Lupin's trail - or so they think... Several times Lupin complains that his habit of leaving a calling card just makes him easy to frame.
  • Concealing Canvas: In one episode, Lupin and Grognard are baffled as to where some hidden documents could be in the room, because there are no paintings for a safe to be hidden behind, and as Grognard points out, "All safes are behind paintings!". Turns out it was behind a tribal mask.
    • Later on in the same episode, Karst fulfils the exact same trope... and Lupin goes straight for the painting.
  • Cool Car: Lupin's car can even turn into an airplane and a boat.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: H.R. Karst. Arms dealing, industrial espionage (and sabotage), kidnappings, false-flag operations to incriminate others, tax evasion... you name it.
  • Cultural Translation: The English dub gives pretty much everyone a Canadian accent. Fortunately all names have their proper French pronunciations
    • Lupin himself however has a very slight accent that sounds like it might be French. Maybe.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Lupin is often this, especially when he's lampshading various elements of the story he's in.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: On episode seven, May Hem had an interesting way of calming down the enraged Karst who was once again foiled by Lupin. The scene ended with May Hem stroking the back of Karst's neck and a newspaper was thrown away.
  • Evil Counterpart: Karst to Lupin, Steel to Grognard, and May Hem to Kelly. Max is the only member of team Lupin who doesn't get one.
  • Fake-Out Make-Out: Lupin and Kelly pull one of these when planning to rob Fort Knox.
  • Femme Fatale: May Hem again. It's even in her name.
  • Friend in the Press: Kelly Kincaid and Max Leblanc serve as this to Lupin, assisting him in his plans to foil Karst in many ways.
  • The Full Name Adventures: The French title.
  • Gay Paree: Most of the buildings and clothes are Art Deco. Not that much of an Adaptation Decay, given that about a third of the books were written in that time.
  • Gentleman Thief: Lupin most definitive trait, naturally.
  • High-Class Glass: Lupin always wears a monocle when going into action.
    • In one episode, he allows himself to be caught, but he doesn't have his monocle on. It turns out to be Grognard wearing a Lupin mask.
    • There's also this one episode when Lupin reveals himself to May Hem by removing his mask and putting on his monocle. Then, May Hem slaps him and his monocle falls out.
  • Hopeless Suitor: Folenfant is this to Kelly. There's an interesting variation to this in that Kelly knows he has a crush on her, and is more than willing to exploit this by taking him out to lunch for a scoop... but nothing more.
  • Intrepid Reporter: Kelly. See Plucky Girl below.
  • Karma Houdini: Karst and all his allies. While Lupin does ruin their plans, he is never stopped from trying again or caught for everything he's behind.
    • The general implication is that even if Karst or his cronies were charged, he'd just buy his way out of it.
    • Also, Lupin does seem to hurt Karst in his wallet most of the time. After all, he had a lot of money invested in these schemes...
  • Legacy Character: Fans suggest that the Lupin of NightHood may in fact be the son of the original Arsène Lupin, which would make him the father of Lupin III note , but THAT would fall under Epileptic Trees.
  • The Mafia: They show up in Episode 13, in the most classic style possible, given the time period.
  • Male Gaze: A couple of times featuring May Hem - and she routinely exploits it.
  • Master of Disguise: Lupin, of course... even when it's just a fake moustache. May Hem also gets in on the act from time to time.
  • Match Cut: During the intro sequence, a rose petal turns into Lupin's Badass Cape.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: H.R. Karst is pretty much a villainous Howard Hughes, and his name is similar to William Randolph Hearst.
  • Orient Express: A large part of A Prince on The Orient Express.
  • Papa Wolf: Just try messing with any one of Lupin's friends...
  • Personal Mook: While not at all villainous, Grognard is this to Lupin, acting as his driver, cook, and general ally.
    • Steel plays this straight for Karst.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: Despite being so notorious other criminals sometimes pretend to be Lupin to throw the police off the trail, he's never actually shown committing any crime besides evading the authorities, instead devoting all his time and effort to thwarting other criminals in their endeavors. Maybe the creators were afraid of getting in trouble for having a cool Villain Protagonist.
  • Plucky Girl: Kelly is very gutsy no matter what.
  • Police Are Useless: Well, Folenfant certainly is.
  • Punny Name: Not just May Hem (d'you get it?) but Folenfant, translated into English, means "foolish/mad child".
    • In Episode 13, there's a Mafioso whose surname is Marscapone.
  • Scarf of Asskicking: Lupin tends to wear a scarf whenever he goes into action.
  • Schizo Tech: The show is set post World War I and yet, there's the existence of surveillance cameras.
  • Setting Update: Arsène Lupin was set around the 1900s. Night Hood takes place in the early 1930s.
  • Shout-Out: This version of Lupin has several Shout Outs to various anime series, least obvious is Lupin himself takes several visual and stylistic cues from Tuxedo Mask and there are even a few to Lupin III (the dynamic between Lupin and Ascended Extra Grognard owes a lot to that between Lupin and Jigen).
  • Something about a Rose: Aside from symbolizing how Lupin really is, rose becomes a communication item for Lupin and Kelly whenever there's crucial info.
  • Spy Catsuit: May Hem has one. More surprisingly, Lupin himself dons a male equivalent few times.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Lupin is very good at these.
  • Sweet Tooth: Max tends to enjoy the occasional sweet.
  • Sympathetic Inspector Antagonist: Ganimard. He's the original Inspector Zenigata.
  • Timm Style: The art style is very obviously inspired by Batman: The Animated Series.
  • Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: Kelly is a tall and brawny girl while Max is a short and scrawny boy.
  • Tranquilizer Dart: Complete with Instant Sedation.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Lupin and Kelly if they aren't an Official Couple.
  • Worthy Opponent: Lupin muses that Inspector Ganimard would be this if he wasn't saddled with the utterly incompetent Folenfant.
  • Writing Around Trademarks: The name change for the English dub was due to some legal buffoonery surrounding the name Lupin. Everywhere else around the world the series was released under local translations of Les exploits d'Arsène Lupin.
  • Gentleman Thief Exit Stage Left: Lupin always does this... and not just Once an Episode.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Karst usually gets this whenever he found out that Lupin thwarted his plans again.