Follow TV Tropes

Following

Western Animation / Star vs. the Forces of Evil

Go To

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ecd116cb2581fd85ce28d7ce21542c16.png

"I'm a magical princess from another dimension!"

Star vs. the Forces of Evil is an animated series on Disney XD. It was created by Daron Nefcy, former storyboard revisionist on Wander over Yonder. She is the third woman to create an animated series for Disney.note 

A teenage Magical Girl princess named Star Butterfly (Eden Sher) receives a Magic Wand for her fourteenth birthday and, due to her extreme enthusiasm and extreme inexperience, almost destroys the kingdom with it. Her parents decide she's not ready for the responsibility. She fears they'll send her to the "St. Olga's Reform School for Wayward Princesses", but they just want her to have someplace that isn't their own home to learn and practice, so they send her to Earth to live with the Diaz family.

Marco Diaz is a safety-minded boy who is immediately a little freaked out at being assigned the new "foreign exchange student", but his family loves her. Unfortunately, Star's wand is a powerful item, and there are many evildoers who desire its power. Thanks to a free-spirited friend of Star's, though, Star and Marco end up with a pair of dimension-cutting scissors, allowing them to dimension hop and have adventures at will.

View the theme song in high quality, or this preview.

The first episode aired on January 18, 2015 as a preview on Disney Channel. The show officially began on its sister network, Disney XD, on March 30, 2015.

The series' third season premiered as a two-hour TV movie called Star vs. the Forces of Evil: The Battle for Mewni that aired on July 15, 2017. This is the third animated movie to premiere on the Disney XD channel, the other two being Phineas and Ferb The Movie: Across the 2nd Dimension, and the similar movie version of "Weirdmageddon", the Grand Finale of Gravity Falls.

A comic series began in September 2016. A book, Star and Marco's Guide to Mastering Every Dimension, released in March 2017. Another book, The Magic Book Of Spells, was released in September 2018.

You can vote for your favorite episode here.

Despite being an animated comedy, the show has a strong sense of continuity and some plot twists. Therefore, beware of spoilers.


This series features examples of:

    open/close all folders 

    A-D 
  • Adults Are Useless: Zig-Zagged. Star and Marco regularly fight off monsters and deal with other problems without adults around, and adults who are present have a tendency to be incompetent. However, Star also asks her mom and Glossaryck for advice from time to time, and in Season 2 we see cops and park rangers doing their job.
  • Aerith and Bob: "Star Butterfly" comes from a dimension where names can range from "Tom" and "Kelly" to "River" and "Toffee" to "Glossaryck" and "Yvgeny Bulgolyubov" (Buff Frog). Speaking of Tom, his parents consist of "Dave" and "Wrathmelior".
  • An Aesop: The series has several:
    • Even if you are good friends with two people, you shouldn't expect them to always automatically get along with each other, or warm up to each other with enough time.
    • You shouldn't just let a friend's cruel behavior slide and hope they'll get better on their own. You need to let them know what they did was wrong, and if their behavior gets too extreme, you may even have to end the friendship altogether.
    • Don't have blind faith in your history and heroes, there are two sides to every story, and their actions may not have been as heroic when you take a better look at them.
    • Don't endanger the lives of others for your own thrills and adventures.
    • If you feel like you're being underestimated by your loved ones, you should at least try to understand the reasons behind their actions because they may have just wanted to protect you or keep you from harm.
    • When faced with a problem, trying to take the easy way out can often just make things more difficult.
    • If you are not happy with someone's decision, it's best to accept their choice rather than bitterly making or finding excuses to change their mind. Finally, having a Vitriolic Best Buds relationship isn't always favorable as your friends may not understand why you insult them or make things difficult for them.
    • Just because you think that your son or daughter is more than capable of looking after themselves, doesn't mean that you're allowed to focus on your own life. You should still keep an eye on them, in case they get themselves into trouble or cause trouble.
    • Sometimes you have to voice your discomfort/disliking towards a subject or person even if it hurts. Emotions do not go away on a whim and it will hurt more if you try to suppress it or ignore it for someone else's benefit. Sometimes it is more beneficial and healthy to consider your own thoughts and needs.
    • It's OK to have feelings for someone. While it may not be wise to admit while the crush is already in a relationship, sometimes there is no other option and it will be healthier if you just admit it rather than suppressing it in the hope that it will disappear. It's also best that you confess these feelings yourself before a third party does it for you.
    • Life is full of difficulties, experiences, and situations you may not feel ready for. You might not ever feel "ready" for these experiences, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't try them. If it doesn't work out, there's no shame in looking to others for help when you can't solve a problem. Nobody ever became good at something without trying it.
    • There is no such thing as a pure, good person. Everyone has their flaws but without them, we wouldn't be human and we wouldn't have any form of free will. If you are afraid of your bad traits or want to change, learn to control those traits or seek support from your family, friends or therapists rather than hurt yourself for someone else's view of purity.
  • Anti-Regeneration: Queen Moon learns black magic from Eclipsa to neutralize Toffee's healing factor, making him unable to regenerate.
  • The Alleged Car: Oskar's car-slash-studio-slash-living space. It's old, it's busted, the brakes and steering are shot, and it's mostly full of garbage.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: Tom has a crush on Star, who has a crush on Oskar and then unknowingly Marco, Marco has a crush on Jackie, who has a crush on a guy from skate camp. Jackie did eventually go on a date with Marco and they shared a First Kiss.
  • All There in the Manual: The last names of most of the characters, including Ludonote , Tom and most of Star and Marco's classmates, are not mentioned in the series, but are found in Star and Marco's Guide to Mastering Every Dimension. Other details are also revealed in that book, like the fact that seasons 1 and 2 take place during the 2014-2015 school year and the fact that Tom is specifically from Mewni's Underworld rather than a generic Hell-like dimension.
  • Aluminum Christmas Trees: Marco's "Space Unicorn" ringtone sounds like it was made up for the show. It wasn't.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Star strongly believes in the fundamental evil of the monsters she's fighting, at least until "Mewnipendance Day" when she is forced to reevaluate the history between Mewmans and monsters.
  • Amusing Injuries:
    • Marco's father gets a laser pulse to the eye thanks to Star's adorable laser puppies. He ends up winking it closed and continuing to coo over the cute puppy.
    • Marco himself tends to get them at least Once per Episode, usually due to Star's magic.
  • Anachronism Stew: Although Mewni seems to be stuck in the Dung Ages, bits and pieces of the modern world are there; King Butterfly has a wristwatch, and Ludo's castle has a modern break room. Plus, Mewmans use cell phones that are powered by magic.
  • Animation Bump: Season 1's animation wasn't bad, but some fans complained about the animation work by Toon City looking more stiff than the Mercury Filmworks episodes. Since Sugarcube Animation and the experienced Rough Draft Korea took over in Season 2, this issue more or less disappeared.
  • Animesque: Though the character designs are definitely more Western, the series involves a princess from another dimension with a magic wand that looks straight out of Sailor Moon, there are Anime references and Gratuitous Japanese strewn throughout (a picture taken in the photobooth with Star, Marco, and Pony Head reads "SUPER KAWAII!"), and the ending theme's animation may as well be taken from an anime in its format.
  • Another Dimension: Mewni, where Star is from, which is one of several. It's right there in the Theme Song. Magic scissors are used by the characters to move between them.
  • Arc Words: "On the fritz" is used whenever magic stuff stops working properly, something that happens more and more often as the show continues. Eventually it's revealed that "the fritz" is an actual phenomenon that's causing magic to slowly vanish from the universe, and it's steadily getting worse and worse.
  • Art Evolution: Somewhere in mid/late-Season 1, the character outlines became slightly less thick. Season 2 made a few more changes, the most noticeable being Ms. Skullnick's character design looking a lot less grotesque.
    • Cheyenne Curtis and Lynn Wang were the main character designers for Season 1, until as of Season 2, Becky Dreisdadt, Stephanie Ramirez, and Devin Taylor took the positions which can explain some differences in facial expressions and designs from Season 1. Take Buff Frog for example as he went from buff to fat and overweight.
  • Artifact of Doom: Star's wand could become this in the hands of evil. Star herself destroys an entire village not five minutes after receiving it, which leads to her being sent to Earth.
    • Even without being used in evil hands, the wand is apparently so dangerous that simply someone unfamiliar with its powers trying to wield it make even Janna duck and cover. At the time, all Marco was doing was touching the wand and Janna was still fairly sure it could kill him. Star later confirms (after a backlash from a non-combat spell from the wand destroys her room) that doing so was incredibly stupid.
  • Artifact Title: Played with. While Star still fights villains as the show gets Darker and Edgier, what "the Forces of Evil" actually entails becomes more complicated as the seasons progress. In particular: whether monsters are aggressive antagonists or innocent victims.
  • Artistic License – Martial Arts: For all that he calls it karate, none of Marco's moves bear any resemblance to actual karate. Justified in that his sensei is literally on the same level as him.
  • Bee Afraid: Star's "Honeybee Tornado Swarm" spell.
  • BFS: Star, for some reason has one of these in her room.
  • Big Bad Ensemble:
    • Season One and Two has Ludo, Toffee, and Miss Heinous of St. Olga's Reform School of Wayward Princesses. Ludo is bent on stealing Star's wand to take over the universe, while Miss Heinous seeks to annihilate Marco for his uprising against her institute. Toffee overshadows them all, though, usurping and eventually possessing Ludo as part of a grand revenge scheme against Moon Butterfly and Mewni, probably followed by Mewman genocide had Star not entered a Super Mode and vaporized him in the moment of his victory.
    • Following Toffee’s death and Ludo taking himself out of the game, Season Three continues Miss Heinous’s path, and introduces Queen Eclipsa. Now free, Eclipsa is influencing Star and is implied to have big plans for the kingdom (although it’s presently unclear if she is truly evil or just misunderstood). Miss Heinous discovers she is Meteora Butterfly, Eclipsa’s long-lost half-monster daughter, pushing her into new and far greater reaching aims and powers.
  • Bigger on the Inside: Tom's skeleton-horse-drawn-carriage looks like it would have room for maybe two people. It's actually enormous on the inside.
  • Big "WHAT?!": Practically Marco's catchphrase.
  • Bilingual Bonus: In Star and Marco's Guide to Mastering Every Dimension, Ingrid writes on Star's yearbook: "Das sieht aus wie Tinte, ist es aber Nicht, Hab einen schoenen Sommer!"translation 
  • Bizarre Alien Biology:
    • In "Mewberty", Star, due to the eponymous condition, develops purple hearts all over her body, and an increased attraction to boys. Before long, she transforms into a six-armed butterfly-like creature, and starts cocooning random boys in a purple substance she sprays from her hands. She returns to normal, but with tiny butterfly wings on her back. In "Game of Flags", it's revealed that the butterfly transformation is not a one-off thing; Star's mother can assume the form at will and without losing control, indicating that eventually Star will be able to do the same.
    • "Game of Flags" also shows that Star's Uncle Lump had his body cut off a year earlier, and simply had his head attached to a horse's body with no apparent problem. He gets decapitated again over the course of the episode and is merely annoyed at having lost another body.
    • Star and her father's confusion over toilets either suggests Mewni simply hasn't invented flushing or they have no need for them. By Season 3 however, toilets are in existence.
    • The headmistress of St. Olga's, Miss Heinous, has club symbols appear on her cheeks after she displays anger. A strong dose of brainwashing makes these vanish again. It's eventually revealed Heinous is a Monster/Mewman hybrid, which comes with its own list of this trope...
  • Black Comedy: Plays with this territory sometimes, with several instances of sentient beings being implied to be killed in the chaos. However, characters have also been shown to be alive and okay after said implications.
  • Bland-Name Product: Quest Buy, where you can find almost anything, is a clear parody of Best Buy, right down to the style of the sloth employees' uniform.
  • Boarding School of Horrors: St. Olga's Reform School for Wayward Princesses is made out to be more like an actual jail. It's also infamous within the princess community, as both Star and Pony Head greatly fear the place. It's eventually revealed to be even worse than what they feared. After Marco led a rebellion within the school, it lost this status. It turns out that even its Head Mistress Miss Heinous wasn't safe and was as much a victim of it as any one, and the original leader was a heartless robot.
  • Body Horror: In "Monster Arm", Marco breaks his arm and Star attempts to fix it via magic, only to instead turn his arm into a giant tentacle. Said giant tentacle proves to have a mind of its own and be quite malevolent and destructive.
  • Brick Break: Marco is training in karate and is seen trying to break boards in the opening. In "Monster Arm", he accidentally hits the part of the board over the cinderblock he was using to prop up the boards and breaks his arm.
  • Brick Joke: There are several instances throughout the series where Marco, by sheer chance, finds himself owing someone exactly six hundred and fifty dollars. He strangely always has that exact amount on him. Early in the series, he claims it's his emergency cash stash, but it's never really explained or remarked upon beyond that. After all, it's not exactly “twenty bucks for sweets” amount, more like “leave the state quickly” amount. In a later episode in which this does NOT happen, Star learns that a line of dolls bearing Marco's likeness are being sold in other dimensions. When asked about this, Marco just says, “Oh, yeah. I get a six hundred fifty dollar royalty check every month.”
  • Broken Aesop: The love triangle between Jackie, Marco and Star underutilized the consequences of Star's confession in "Starcrushed" and the implications of Marco secretly running off to Mewni to find and be with Star for a few weeks after she admitted her feelings for him. The show gave the impression that if your loved one is seemingly having an affair but they don't become intimate (willingly at least), you should be OK with it since it's just a harmless crush. It's also worse for the triangle between Marco, Star and Tom since Marco remorsefully admitted the kiss between him and Star. Tom is seemingly OK with it and actually tries to sacrifice himself to save Marco from Meteora but to no avail and made the situation far worse.
  • Calling Your Attacks: Star whenever she uses her wand. Justified since the call-outs are technically incantations, even if they sound like mashups of random cutesy words.
  • Cerebus Rollercoaster: Longer episodes such as "St. Olga's Reform School for Wayward Princesses" tend to have a more serious tone and darker elements than the largely comedic 11-minute episodes.
  • The Chew Toy: Sabrina, the brunette cheerleader with a ponytail who's always suffering Amusing Injuries. She ends up in a wheelchair in her first appearance.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: Moon and River were childhood friends before they became King and Queen and Marco's parents were childhood friends.
  • Cloudcuckooland: Mewni itself has shades of this. For example, dentists and construction workers can team up to combat the local geography, the blacksmith makes iron shells for turtles for no adequately explained reason and there are two weirdos that have been locked into a Staring Contest for years now.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: The series is slowly becoming a coming-of-age story for the main characters as both Star and Marco as they had been steadily maturing. Marco has matured the most, developing more confidence in himself and being less cautious, successfully going into a relationship with his crush Jackie Lynn Thomas and progressing to a red belt in karate. Star has moved on from her prejudices towards monsters, started to take responsibility for her actions and starting to be more honest with herself.
  • Common Tongue: The language spoken across Mewni is referred to as Mewnian as revealed in "Death Peck", but it happens to sounds like English. Additionally, Mewmans have a written language too, but they also use English writing.
  • The Corruption: When Moon uses or tries to use the spell she got from her Deal with the Devil with Eclipsa, dark jagged Volcanic Veins start running up her arms.
  • Crapsaccharine World: Part of the show's Deconstructive Parody of the Magical Girl genre is that Star's homeworld of Mewni is not the shining kingdom it appears to be. Star is a Magical Girl Princess who's been given too much power and freedom at too young an age and more than once terrorized her own people by accident. Her family rules over a beautiful, pastel-color-schemed Crapsack World styled after Medieval Europe, in that all of the people outside of nobility and the Royal family live in total squalor and the political structure is based heavily on Might Makes Right. To top it off, her family's history isn't exactly clean either—the hordes of monsters they keep out of the kingdom have very legitimate reasons to resent them.
  • Creative Closing Credits:
    • The outro is very reminiscent of anime outros.
    • The end credits for "Starcrushed" is a still image of the Diaz home without Star's tower. It features no music playing whatsoever... and suddenly, Oskar's guitar falls down to the ground out of nowhere.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Spider With a Top Hat seems to just be Star's dorky little comic relief spell. In actuality, he is her most powerful spell.
  • Darker and Edgier: Many episodes from the second season have a much darker tone in comparison with the first season. The third season actually takes this even further.
  • Deal with the Devil: In the past, Moon made a deal with Eclipsa to learn a spell capable of killing Toffee: Eclipsa would teach her the spell and in exchange Moon would free her as soon as Toffee was dead. She took advantage of the Exact Words by using the spell to cripple Toffee instead of killing him, thereby avoiding freeing Eclipsa while still dealing with the monster army. Except then Star and Ludo manage to kill him, setting Eclipsa up as the Big Bad from Season 3 onward.
  • Deconstructive Parody: Of the Magical Girl genre, as well as the associated Magical Girlfriend and Action Girlfriend tropes. With a wrecking ball... filled with dynamite and fiery rainbows.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: When seeing adult Marco in "Running With Scissors", Star barely listens to him, is entirely focused on his six pack and couldn't compose her sentences.
  • The Dog Bites Back: After being manipulated by Toffee throughout season 2, Ludo is the one who apparently finishes him off by pushing a pillar onto him after Star half-vaporized him.
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: The ending theme is performed by Star's voice actress, Eden Sher. Bonus points because it feels like an anime ending (both visuality and song-wise). Neither Disney XD or Disney Channel have applied Credits Pushback on their airings.
  • Doom Troops: The guards of St. Olga's are designed with maximum intimidation; deathly cold voices, show no mercy, masked faces, and the like. Seriously, they look like they stepped out of BioShock.
  • Doorstopper: The manual for Star's magic wand. Justified as it's a giant collection of personal notes from centuries of past users, and has not been organized nor cared for that much. When Star pulls it out from under her bed, the pages are worn, dusty, and some of the notes appear to have been added with Mewni scotch-tape.
  • Droste Image: The effect is achieved in "Raid the Cave", when Star is attempting to use her spying spell and eventually spies on Marco through the portal, who in turn is spying on Star and the portal right back.

    E-L 
  • Early Installment Weirdness: Season one is much more lighthearted and energetic than any of the subsequent seasons, and the characters are also prone to making more exaggerated facial expressions. This is in no small part due to the animation done by Mercury Filmworks.
  • Elephant in the Living Room: For most of Season 3, the fact that Star has feelings for Marco and declared it. Neither of them ever bring it up amongst themselves and just continue with their lives as usual. Said elephant ended up being addressed in "Booth Buddies", and Marco even admitted that he never brought it up so that things wouldn't be different between them.
  • Elite Mooks: The guards of St. Olga's are just scarily competent and intimidating that fighting them is usually not recommended.
  • Elves vs. Dwarves: The Butterfly-Johansen families have this dynamic. The Johnsons are card carrying warriors, who are rough, barbarous and openly emotional. The Butterflies are elegant, regal, stuck up and highly reserved. The marriage of Moon Butterfly and River Johansen brought the two families together, creating Star who is a blend of both.
  • End of the World as We Know It:
    • What could happen if Star's wand fell into evil hands... although she also tends to be rather chaotic with it outside of combat situations.
    • When Star first goes through mewberty, she describes it as "destroy the school" bad.
  • Evil All Along: Hey, what do you know? The Monster Arm isn't so bad after all- wait, no, it's actually worse.
  • Eviler Than Thou: Ludo and Toffee. Toffee has bigger plans for Star and Queen Moon while Ludo has ever barely managed to obtain Star's wand. His scheme is so good he possesses Ludo's body/half of Star's wand without Ludo knowing it.
    • End of Season 1 Toffee wins Ludo's castle and minions by simple persuasion. Marco later relates Toffee to a lawyer.
  • Evolving Credits: Season 2's group shot near the end of the opening credits changes the characters present from season 1.
  • Expository Theme Tune: The theme song explains Star's backstory and MO to a T.
  • Eye Scream:
    • One of said puppies fires a laser into Marco's dad's eye.
    • In "Lobster Claws", Star fires a wave of crystal cupcakes at Ludo's minions, one of which gets lodged in Bearnicorn's eye.
    • A running gag has Marco repeatedly get his sensei's clipped toenails, flies, and other objects launched into his eyes whilst training for his red belt.
  • The Fair Folk: The pixies in "Pixtopia". They're beautiful, ethereal, and send Star and her friends to the mines for not being able to pay a bill. The pixie empress orders the gang killed when she can't marry Ferguson, and according to Star, she would have eaten him had the marriage gone through.
  • Family Theme Naming: The Butterfly royal family seems to name their daughters after celestial bodies and phenomena: Star, her mother Moon, and Eclipsia are just a few examples.
  • Feudal Future: If "Skooled" is of any indication, Mewni is a medieval-style setting with peasants, royalty and nobility, but they've had computers and robots (albeit outdated by today's standards) even 300 years prior to the present day.
  • Fighter, Mage, Thief: Marco Diaz is tough and a skilled martial artist (Fighter). Star Butterfly casts powerful spells with a magic wand, though she is no slouch in hand to hand combat (Mage). Janna Ordonia, who later joins the other two on their adventures, is stealthy, mischievous, and a skilled pickpocket and lock picker (Thief).
  • Foreign Exchange Student: The Diazes have apparently played host to many of these in the past. One called Gustav visits in an early episode.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Toffee being the voice inside Ludo's wand got quite a bit of this: Ludo used two phrases that Toffee had previously used "Swallow it" and "Surprise!", Toffee's skeletal hand made up his wand, and his finger showed up inside the other half of the wand.
    • Glossaryck's nature as a true neutral was hinted at in "Page Turner" when he talks about Queen Eclipsa in positive terms for never questioning him.
    • Lekmet was the only one of the magic high council to not have a Day in the Limelight episode and he dies in a Heroic Sacrifice in "Starcrushed".
  • Four-Fingered Hands: Both humans and Mewmans sport four digits on each hand, as do some other characters.
  • Genre Shift: The first two seasons act as a Slice of Life comedy about Star learning to adjust to Earth culture, and occasionally going on dimension hopping misadventures. The third season, however, shifts this by returning Star to Mewni, with Marco following her soon after, with the plot being much more focused on Star learning to handle the responsibilities of royalty, uncovering her kingdom's Dark Secrets and mending some of Mewni's Fantastic Racism. Essentialy, it shifts from a magical Sitcom to High Fantasy.
  • Global Currency: Almost every dimension seems to use the same currency. At the very least, nobody has any trouble accepting $650 from Marco. The only exception thus far is Pixtopia, which only accepts gold and jewels.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: The fate of all those who try to decipher the labyrinthine Quest Buy mall's cryptic organization system. Marco cracks the system.
  • The Good, the Bad, and the Evil: Star's casual fights against Ludo and his monsters does not compare with the evil the cast faces in Season 3 "The Battle for Mewni".
  • Graying Morality: The series started off as a rather black and white "mewmans good, monsters bad" story, then we learn that most of Mewni is stuck in the Dung Ages, most of the monsters are actually just fighting to take back their forcibly-stolen land, and King and Queen Butterfly are well aware of Star's dimension-hopping misadventures (using Glossaryck as The Mole).
  • Great Big Book of Everything: Subverted with the manual for Star's wand. While Star claims it is a comprehensive list of the spells mastered by the wand's previous owners, that valuable information is extremely disorganized and often barely legible. This isn't helped by the fact that its living glossary likes to Be as Unhelpful as Possible.
  • Gross-Up Close-Up: Very rare, but it happens on occasion. The episode "The Bogbeast of Boggabuh", for example, treats us to a close-up of both River and Star's bulging, very bloodshot eyeballs.
  • Hidden Villain: Season 3 hints that someone with a lot of power has been acting behind the scenes of the Butterfly Family. Eclipsa never had a daughter named Festivia. Her only daughter was Meteora, who was erased from all registers and even from the Magic High Comission's Archive (a secret archive that keeps the story of the Royal Family in check), someone positioned Mina in an abandoned monster temple to end Meteora were her to ever come back and erased Meteora's memory, turning her into Ms. Heinous, while simultaneously giving Festivia the throne. At the end of "Total Eclipsa of the Moon", Moon says she thinks she knows who did it. As it turns out, it was the Magic High Commission all along, just as Moon suspected.
  • High-School Sweethearts: Mr. and Mrs. Diaz, according to the "#MarcoLIVE Animated Live Chat" by Marco in response to a fan.
  • How Do I Shot Web?: Implied to be a problem for wielders of the magic wand in general. No one ever explains what words are necessary to cast the desired spell. A slight change the spell's incantation can have dangerous and possibly fatal consequences. Even Star's Book of Spells is just a catalog of notes from previous users who awkwardly scrawled down incantations without any regard to organization or legibility.
  • Human Outside, Alien Inside: Mewmans are this, see Bizarre Alien Biology above.
  • Humans Are Warriors: Marco is a shining example of this. Marco is 14 years old, and learned karate from a strip mall dojo. He's only a green belt (which is only about halfway through the ranking system). Yet he is capable of defeating fully grown, adult monsters time after time, just as well as an alien princess with extremely destructive magic. He's not even fully grown yet, but he's more than a match in a fight than most of what he and Star go up against.
  • Hypocrite: Season 3 addresses the audience's concerns about how Mewman prejudice against monsters has been accompanied by a slew of hypocritical behaviors. To begin with, there are certain creatures that look unnatural (by Mewman standards), and yet they're not subject to the same treatment by Mewmans. Demons, in this case add more insult to the injury—they look and act like monsters, people fear them, but they're treated with respect due to them having been allies of the Royal Family since Mewni's founding. Second, the Magic High Commission crystallized Eclipsa for falling in love with a monster as one of her offenses, but it's later shown Hekapoo, one of its members, hangs in a tavern where she regularly interacts with monsters.
  • The "I Love You" Stigma: In "Face the Music" Star's crush on Marco is publicly revealed to him in the final stanza of the song and in "Starcrushed". The two couldn't maintain a conversation long enough without becoming awkward with each other. Due to the fact that Marco was struggling to comprehend her feelings for him and Star was too embarrassed to admit the accuracy of the song.
  • Imagine Spot: Both Star and Princess Pony Head have identical nightmarish imaginings of going to St. Olga's Reform School for Wayward Princesses.
  • Immortals Fear Death: Back when Moon the Undaunted became Queen of Mewni, an army led by Toffee was trying to conquer the Kingdom and they took victory for granted because they can regrow any body parts they lose. With a spell she learned from Eclipsa, Moon made Toffee lose a finger and he couldn't regrow it. Seeing it scared his followers into fleeing.
  • Innocently Insensitive: Several characters were like this to Star since "Bon Bon the Birthday Clown". For example Jackie wasn't aware of Star's crush on Marco and didn't realise how it effected her. Marco didn't realise how uncomfortable Star was during the concert in "Just Friends".
  • Insistent Terminology: In the episode "Divide", Star refuses to be called Queen and insists that she is only Acting Queen.
  • Interdimensional Travel Device: Characters, both good and evil, use magic "Dimensional Scissors" to cut open portals to other dimensions. One even used a dimensional chainsaw.
  • Killer Rabbit: It's almost a running gag that Star will turn normally harmless creatures into voracious, man-eating creatures.
  • Knighting: After saving Mewni from Ludo and Toffee, Marco is made an honorary Knight of Mewni and given an official knight's cape by King River. Of course, River tells him he can make it official if Marco is ready to commit. It's later subverted because River did it just to humor Marco, and he didn't think Marco was going to be serious about it. Later on, Star gives him the equivalent of a knighting ceremony, to make him her squire.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: Not even less than a week after the airing of “Monster Ball”, Disney XD did not hesitate to air a promo for the Disney NOW! app, showcasing each of the identities of the holders of the card symbols, spoiling that Heinous is Eclipsa’s daughter.
  • Love Triangle: After "Bon Bon the Birthday Clown", one has started between Jackie, Marco, and Star. Star didn't want to admit it since Marco is already with Jackie. She eventually does confess to Marco at the end of "Starcrushed", just before she has to leave Earth and possibly never return. This was later put to rest in Season 3 by having Jackie break up with Marco but a love triangle instead formed between Marco, Tom and Star. This lead to a Cock Fight between Marco and Tom on "Stump Day".
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Miss Heinous from St. Olga’s is strongly implied to be related to the Butterflies through the club marks that occasionally appear on her cheeks. Confirmed in "Monster Bash", when she is revealed to be the daughter of Queen Eclipsa.

    M-P 
  • Magical Incantation: Played with. Most of Star's spells aren't poetic lines of incantations, but not as simple as an "Abracadabra" either. Star tends to shout her intent with whatever words pop into her head. She doesn't always think ahead (or at all), which causes problems. In "Storm the Castle", a straighter example is the Whispering Spell, in which Star whispers an incantation. However, it isn't discernible exactly what is whispered, or in what language.
  • Magitek: Played for Laughs, The Wand requires a charger, not unlike a cell phone. The charger itself is also magic and can enchant any device.
  • Magic Mirror: Star's mirror allows her to contact anyone from Mewni and across dimensions. The user usually chants "Mirror, mirror, on the wall, call..." and the name of whoever they are calling. It even features a randomization feature where it simply connects with "anyone".
  • Magic Wand:
    • Star's wand is incredibly powerful and could potentially destroy everything in the wrong hands. It also seems to change its form depending on who uses it. It looks more like a royal scepter at first, but when the Queen gives it to Star, it changes to look like something Sailor Moon or Sakura Kinomoto would use. When Lobster Claws gets it for a moment, it turns into a dark scepter with an eye, not unlike the Eye of Truth from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.
    • After the wand is cleaved in "Storm the Castle", Ludo discovers the other half (consisting of the left side of the severed wand crystal and a handle made out of a skeletal right hand and forearm with the middle finger missing), taking it for his own.
  • The Mall: Quest Buy is a transdimensional example.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: The show is essentially a deconstruction of the trope; it starts out with Star indeed making Marco's life more interesting but also more chaotic, as if it's saying "be careful what you wish for" to viewers who dream of meeting such a character, but over time, the show becomes more about Marco aiding the character development of Star by helping her tone down and control her uber-impulsive behavior.
  • Matriarchy: Mewni is implied to be this. In "Mewnipendence Day", it is revealed that the land was conquered through the power of the Queen's wand. In addition, it is revealed in "Game of Flags" that husbands take their wives' names when they marry and apparently the Queen has the right of repudiate her marriage if she desired it. Despite Star being an only child, there is never any hint of a succession crisis.
  • Mister Big: Ludo. All his mooks are several times bigger than he is, yet he intimidates them just the same.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: The peasant village in Mewni boasts stables full of part-pig, part-goat creatures.
  • Mood Whiplash: Anytime an episode ends on an ominous or grim note, immediately followed by the cheery ending credits. Averted in "Starcrushed".
  • Morph Weapon: The wand zigzags on this. First of all, the wand changes to match the personality of the wielder. In "School Spirit", we see Star had turned it into a mace. She can extend the handle making it a Boom Stick to use it like a bazooka or just pull a construct of the barrel out the back as a rocket appears out the front. She once grew a cone on it to use it as a megaphone.
  • Mundane Utility: Star can use her wand to give her ponytails or pigtails at the blink of an eye.
  • Muscles Are Meaningless: Ludo's minions are mostly big, muscular brutes... who routinely get beaten up by a pair of average-sized fourteen year olds:
    Ludo: How are you losing? You guys have like 200 pounds on her!
  • Mushroom Samba:
  • Never Say "Die": Sometimes averted, but occasionally played straight.
    • In "Match Maker", an incredibly destructive spell Star casts incapacitates Ludo's monster army, and while she's gloating over her victory to Ludo, she briefly worries that she just killed one of his monsters. Ludo insists that the guy she thinks she might've killed is “just bleeding internally and being a total baby about it!”
    • In "The Other Exchange Student", Star assumes that fellow exchange student Gustav actually plans to eat the Diaz family. After strapping herself to the hood of the car, she tries in vain to warn them, “YOU'RE ALL GOING TO DIIEEE!”
    • Brittney Wong tells Ludo, “I hope you destroy her,” when he ambushes Star after she crashed Brittney's birthday party and overshadowed her.
    • Toffee mentions that the "Mewnipendence Day" holiday celebrated by Mewmans is better known to the monsters as the "Great Monster Massacre", and the context of the holiday makes it clear that it was indeed a literal massacre.
    • The first question of the Truth or Punishment game played at Star's sleepover is the surprisingly mundane and unimpressive “What is your favorite color?” Ponyhead figures that subsequent questions will be much heavier, like “have you ever killed a man?”
    • "Gift of the Card" has the terms of the titular gift card include a provision that the owner of the card and the friend who purchased it for them will "expire" along with the card's expiration date. Subverted when Marco's reaction to learning this makes it clear in no uncertain terms what that means.
    Marco: Wha-ha-hat?! Like, we DIE?!
    • The same episode also has Marco saying that he almost got killed the last time he went to Quest Buy, which is why he didn't want to use the card. Miss Heinous also tells Rasticore at the beginning of the episode to destroy Star.
    • When a "songstrel" comes to write Star's Princess Song, she skips out of the house for hours. While he waits, he sings a song to pass the time:
    Where is Princess Star?
    Has she travelled far?
    I am very musically skilled
    But if I don't write this, I'll surely be kil— HEY!
    • Completely averted in the "Battle for Mewni" special, to the point that it seems Disney just doesn't care anymore about censoring any word related to "death". Examples go from Moon confessing to Star that Toffee killed her mother, Katrina commenting that Star's lack of planning will get her killed, Star fearing that she has died after getting trapped in the wand's corrupted magic, to Ludo finishing off Toffee and mockingly telling him that he "turned out to be dead".
  • Noodle Incident: There are several incidents mentioned that we don't know much about yet.
    • Marco wore a helmet in the gym shower at one point.
    • It's implied that Ludo and Star fought each other before the series started, and they've certainly met previously.
    • Star briefly mentions that Pony Head has gotten "possessive" before.
    • Star's demonic ex-boyfriend has tried to get back with her more than once.
  • No OSHA Compliance:
    • The "Bounce Lounge" has no railings, yet is situated directly over a lot of spikes, with a(n apparently living) skeleton impaled on them.
    • "Quest Buy" is poorly managed by sloth workers, people tend to get lost and go insane trying to navigate in the store, and it has working death traps on its booby trap department. Though they DO apparently have Worker's Comp!
  • Now Which One Was That Voice?: Many voice actors for minor characters are often credited under "additional voices" , meaning you need good ears to guess who's voicing who. This even applies to some major characters at times, as mentioned under billing displacement.
  • Number of the Beast: Joked about in "Blood Moon Ball" but not mentioned directly; Tom states that the ball takes place every 667 years, with Rider Strong's delivery of the line drawing attention toward the subversion. The same joke comes up again in "Running With Scissors", as Marco's dragon-bike has a collar with the tag "667" on it.
  • Odd Name Out: Ludo's family all end their names with "-do", except for Dennis.
  • One Steve Limit:
    • Averted with the student Justin Armberg and the singer Justin Tower.
    • There are two people named "Larry" in the show: Hungry Larry (a Bedsheet Ghost) and Larry Kelpbottom (prince of the Fish People).
    • Downplayed in regards to "Thomas", which is Tom's full first name and Jackie's surname.
  • Ordinary High-School Student: Star is sent to Earth in order to be this. Marco actually is one, but wishes his life was more exciting. He gets his wish and then some when Star shows up.
  • Our Monsters Are Weird: Ludo and his goons get pretty ridiculous.
    Ludo: You mean you've never met Man Arm?
    Man Arm: *extends a tiny human arm from monstrous alligator body* Hey.
  • Out of Focus: Starting season 3, Marco doesn't feature in many of the episodes. Even a few episodes focus on Queen Moon with almost no involvement of Star.
  • Photo Booth Montage: Star, Marco, and Pony Head go into a photo booth because Star wants them to be friends. As soon as Star leaves, Pony Head threatens Marco while still taking friendly pictures.
    • ”Booth Buddies” is primarily centered around Star wanting to do one with Marco, but never being happy with the end result. They take so many photos, the picture strips jam the slot. The final strip ends with Star and Marco KISSING!
  • Pyrrhic Villainy: Toffee spends all of season 2 manipulating Ludo from inside his wand and causing the Fritz, all so that he can reclaim the finger Moon took from him. He gets it back at the end of "Battle for Mewni"... only for Star to manage to fix the wand from his corruption, enter a Super Mode, and all but vaporize him, and when that doesn't kill him, Ludo appears to do the job by dropping a pillar on him.
  • Place Worse Than Death: St. Olga's Reform School for Wayward Princesses, initially.
  • Police Are Useless: Pretty much any time Marco or Star call the police, they get told there's nothing thry can do, and sometimes get mocked as well. Granted, they're not equipped to deal with, or sometimes even understand, the kind of trouble that Star gets into.
  • Power Incontinence: Star's wand is most dangerous when she tries to use it for non-combat related purposes.
  • The Power of Creation: Seems to be the main power of Star's wand, since she can make small creatures appear from nowhere and turn a butterfly into a monster. The problem stems from the fact that Star has trouble getting the incantations right to make what she wishes, which, therefore, doesn't always come out right.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: Daron Nefcy's original conception of Star, who she had been drawing in comics for years, was that she was a deranged but otherwise ordinary high school girl who only believed she was a magical fairy princess. This concept was ultimately ditched for the show, probably because it was too intense even for the network that broadcasts Gravity Falls. Oh, and Princess Pony Head originally had entrails spilling from her neck instead of glitter. A reminder that sometimes we need Disneyfication
  • Princesses Prefer Pink: When Star disguises Marco as a princess he ends up getting the classic Princess Pink. He isn't amused when Star says pink is his color. He later seems to have changed his mind when he asks to keep the dress (albeit immediately after he received forced princess brainwashing).
  • Psychoactive Powers: "Wand to Wand" shows that both Star and Ludo's wands operate this way; Ludo's wand needs anger to charge it, while Star's spells won't work right if she's feeling angry or frustrated. It takes seeing Marco in danger for Star to get her wand working correctly.
  • Putting on the Reich: The guards of St. Olga's are designed in such a manner.

    R-U 
  • Raise Him Right This Time:
    • In Conquer, after Eclipsa defeats Meteora, Meteora is turned into a baby.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • In Star vs. Echo Creek, while Star finds out that the officers were already going to decommission the police car that she demolished, she's still sentenced to community service for fleeing the scene of an accident.
    • At the end of Stranger Danger, Star finally convinces the Magical High Commission to give Queen Eclipsa a fair trial. Star (and most likely the audience) is expecting the trial to start in the speed of a scene transition, until she’s reminded that it’s going to take a while to actually set it up. For the time being, Eclipsa is put under house-arrest at the castle and is mostly in the background during Season 3.
    • Meteora has been Brainwashed and Crazy her whole life to be Miss Heinous. In most series, the brainwashing being broken would turn her back into a sweet innocent person she was before...but instead having been under it her entire life and abused since infancy results in her being a complete emotional and psychological mess who's more dangerous than she was before.
    • At the end of "Pizza Thing," we are treated to a Good-Times Montage of Marco and Pony Head making a pizza together. When we see Star eating the finished product a minute later, it looks like crap, and she says it tastes terrible. Unsurprising, when you consider neither of them had ever made a pizza before. Pony Head had never even heard of pizza.
    • When Star leaves Marco's life by Marco returning to Earth. He has trouble emphasizing with others and feels limited and restricted by his home dimension. This also causes Jackie to break up with him because she can't put herself between Star and Marco's friendship and he can't stop thinking about his adventures.
    • When Marco decides to return to Mewni unannounced, nobody in the kingdom knows what to do with him and Star is upset with his sudden return since she wants to move on from him.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Lots of them. Just watch the ending theme.
  • Running Gag:
    • Whenever St. Olga's Reform School for Wayward Princesses is brought up, it's always followed by lightning, said character who doesn't want to be sent there screaming, and a shot of them being "sucked" into said school (by a strangely out of place conveyor belt) with the gate closing behind them.
    • Star accidentally giving Marco a makeover.
    • Flying creatures spawned by Star swooping down and taking people.
    • People, or a puppy, being sucked into black holes.
    • A few episodes have their own Running Gag which often is revealed to be a Chekhov's Gun or Chekhov's Skill, such as Marco's disgust of wet socks.
    • Marco having $650 on him for no apparent reason and using it to pay some unexpected charge. Early in the series, he claims it's his emergency cash stash, which would make sense for him to restore it back to the original amount when he has the use it. It also turns out that $650 is the exact amount that he makes in monthly royalties from Princess Marco merchandise.
  • Schizo Tech: Mewni has electronic vending machines but no light bulbs, water fountains, or bicycles.
  • Ship Tease: Has its own page.
  • Sickeningly Sweethearts: The Diazes are seen portrayed as an extremely lovey-dovey couple. In Star and Marco's Guide to Mastering Every Dimension, Star says that they can be usually be found cuddling on the couch. In the "#Marco LIVE Animated Live Chat", Marco said in response to a fan, his parents were high school sweethearts and loved each other for a long time. These episodes show how the Diazes are lovey dovey.
    • "Diaz Family Vacation": Rafael and Angie give each other bedroom eyes on the couch and Angie plays with Rafael's chest hair. In the Forest of Certain Death, Rafael comments on his wife's beauty. And while they were in the hot spring, they make kissy faces to each other.
    • "Raid the Cave": As Star uses the All-Seeing Eye to find Glossaryck, Star has spotted them by surprise as they pop their legs up and they lean in to kiss.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Star and Jackie developed feelings for Marco because of his kindness. Star was attracted to bad boys and Jackie had interest in a boy from skate camp.
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: Sabrina the cheerleader ends up in the hospital a couple times.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: Heavily idealistic.
  • Sliding Scale of Continuity: The show started out as Level 3, with the only things in the first season carrying over into later episodes being: Star getting interdimensional scissors, Ms. Skullnick turning into a troll, and Toffee joining Ludo's army. From the Season 1 finale onwards, the show jumped to Level 4, with several plot threads opened in Season 1 continuing into Season 2 and 3.
  • Sliding Scale Of Silliness Vs Seriousness: Was originally in the silly side, but as of the first half-hour episode, the show began going back and forth, with dramatic and lore-heavy episodes being mixed in with random misadventures.
  • Sorting Algorithm of Evil: Ludo was usurped by the far more competent and dangerous Toffee, but seemingly managed to come back more dangerous than him thanks to a wand of his own only for him to be Toffee's pawn the entire time and Toffee to reveal himself and prove way more dangerous with the Wand than Ludo was. After his defeat, there's no real Big Bad for awhile until Meteora is revealed and shows herself to be even more powerful and dangerous than even Toffee.
  • Spoiler Opening: At the end of the title sequence, Ms. Skullnick appears as a troll.
  • Stalking Is Funny If It Is Female After Male: Janna stalks, spies on, steals from, blackmails, invades the privacy, teases and flirts with Marco in nearly every episode she appears. His horror and discomfort is always played for laughs.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: The principal, for no reason, informs everyone at a pep rally that the head cheerleader did not get that position because her father donated a bunch of money to the school.
  • Teens Are Short: Sort of. Star and Marco are both 14, and while most of the adults on the show are taller, quite a few are around the same size or slightly shorter than them.note  And very much subverted with a few of the background characters at their school, who are teenagers and very tall.
  • Tiger Versus Dragon:
    • Marco and Jeremy have this antagonistic relationship, Marco is the dragon because he is the most rational, patient and logical to win fights. Jeremy is the tiger because he fights because of his ego and Spoiled Brat behavior which results in him being an aggressive fighter.
    • When Star and Marco argue then they represent this trope, alternatively they represent this trope when fighting enemies. Star is the tiger because her magic is effected by her emotions and she tends to allow her emotions effect her decisions. Examples include refusing to help an enemy because she believed that monsters were naturally evil and irredeemable, angrily believed that Marco saw her as helpless and in need of rescue from Tom despite Marco being Properly Paranoid and finally she tried to bury her feelings for Marco because she feared that she would ruin their friendship or ruin his relationship with Jackie. Marco is the dragon because he is the most rational and logical when making decisions but it has gotten him in trouble due to other dimensions having different laws and traditions. This trope is best shown in two episodes, when Star and Marco tried to save the bounce lounge Marco tried to tell her that she should accept the change to preserve her nostalgia however Star refused to listen and valiantly tried to save it. This is also shown when Marco and Star became babysitters for Buff Frog's children, Star disregarded the rules so that the children can have fun but Marco insisted that they follow Buff Frog's instrustions. This dichotomy is primarily shown when the pair fight enemies as Marco uses his martial arts to win whereas Star uses devastating magical attacks to quickly win fights.
  • Transformation Sequence: The Battle For Mewni Episode 7 Star has a sequence before turning into a yellow butterfly with six arms (similar to her mother's magical form) and vanquishing Toffee. This drains Star but saves everyone.
  • Unrequited Love Switcheroo: Marco and Star, Star have been harboring a crush since mid-Season 2 finally getting over it after the Battle for Mewni to which Marco starts being attracted towards her, but the implications of such are not on lost on her.
  • Unusual Euphemism: Star sometimes uses the phrase "Pegasus feathers".
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: It's pretty rare for anyone in the series to react to the display of magic, particularly not Star's extremely liberal usage of it. Only the school principal in the first episode displays any skepticism, and it gets dropped as soon as Star's father gives him a box of gold. Marco's parents have no reaction to the strange girl who summons puppies that shoot lasers from their eyes and adds an entire wing/tower onto their house. A guy who trails fire, has three eyes and arrives in front of the school in a carriage drawn by a skeleton horse draws no further comment from anyone other than a few girls remarking on how hot he is. And Oskar complaining that the demon parked his carriage in the handicapped space.

    V-Z 
  • Versus Title: Star vs. the Forces of Evil.
  • Volcanic Veins: Eclipsa has dark ones running up her arm, and Moon gets them as well after her Deal with the Devil with her.
  • Vomit Discretion Shot: During "Brittney's Party", Marco has been constantly holding back his sick. Once the bus crashes, Marco and Ludo take turns throwing up into a garbage can.
  • Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World: Kind of.
  • We Sell Everything: Quest Buy stocks pretty much every item any trans-dimensional citizen could ever want. Good luck finding exactly what it is you're looking for, though.
  • Wham Line: From the Battle for Mewni trailer, from Queen Moon: "Eclipsa's alive...And I made a deal with her."
    • Another one from the above, again from Moon: “Toffee killed my mother.”
    • “Midnight. Shriek.”
    • Ever since Glossaryck came Back from the Dead, he could only say one word, “Globgor”. Then, in the Season 3 finale, we finally find out what it means:
    Glossaryck: Eclipsa’s Monster Love, Globgor! She’s going to go be with him. I’ve been trying to tell you for months!
  • Whatever Happened to the Mouse?:
    • Although the show has a strong sense of continuity, there are a few elements that are seemingly neglected. Marco's magic Dust Buster, for instance, is never brought up after Star found her replacement charger.
    • Lobster Claws, one of Ludo's minions, only appeared in two episodes (and was the focus of the second) before vanishing from the series completely.
    • The bulk of Ludo's minions are unaccounted for after "Storm the Castle", with only Buff Frog and Boo Fly showing up in Season 2.
    • Alfonso and Ferguson for the bulk of Season 2. This is later lampshaded when Star addresses them by name, but only their arms waving over a crowd could be seen.
    • Marco’s Monster Arm, is seeded in Season 1 as something that will return later, but never factors into seasons 2 & 3.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Played for Laughs in "Page Turner". At the end, Star has read the forbidden chapter of her spellbook and decided it's not for her. Marco, however, has gone insane with power.
  • Women Are Wiser:
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: "Mewnipendence Day" reveals that the founders of Mewni invaded the monsters' home and slaughtered them. This makes you see Ludo and his minions as well as the citizens of Mewni in a whole new light.
  • Written by the Winners: If the implications in "Mewnipendance Day" are correct, the current inhabitants of Mewni are descended from colonists who forcibly removed the comparatively weaker original inhabitants from the land in a "massacre" using the wand that would later become Star's, then claimed it was a self-defense fight in their history books. That these original inhabitants were monsters may be why the monsters of current day are so eager to get Star's wand.
    • Likewise, as Season 3 progresses, many facts come to light which suggest that Queen Eclipsa, despite dealing in dark magic, may not be the cut-and-dry villain that she's been made out to be.
  • You All Look Familiar: Quest Buy is staffed entirely by anthropomorphic sloths with identical voices.

Top