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YMMV / Kinnikuman

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  • Angst? What Angst?: Bibinba doesn't seem to mind the fact that falling in love with Kinnikuman means that she's falling in love with someone from the clan that killed her mother.
    • Kinnikuman never really blamed his father for being left on Earth. That didn't stop them from constantly butting heads over everything, though.
    • Lampshaded in-universe: while Kinnikuman Mariposa blames his upbringing for having become a thief specialized into stealing from other Chojin in retaliation for his poor life, Kinnikuman's friends are quick to notice how Kinnikuman had to grow alone in a shack in Japan, reviled by everyone else and thought a useless bumbler even among his fellow chojin, and that didn't stop him from becoming a hero on his own. Bibinba and Suguru are just good people with an heart of mercy and forgiveness on their own.
      • Double lampshaded: Tatsunori, Suguru's grandfather, is known to have codified centuries of Kinniku Clan teachings in the theory that a true leader must have a heart of Mercy, able to forgive his enemies and let them grow and evolve at his side. Suguru's and Bibinba's utter lack of angst just made them the perfect queen and king for the peaceful era shown between Kinnikuman and Kinnikuman Nisei.
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  • Author's Saving Throw: The original run of Kinnikuman was very clearly being written on a chapter-to-chapter basis without too much thought put into it. The revival instead takes great lengths in connecting the numerous tangential story elements into a coherent, thought-out story... all while letting many characters infamous for constantly jobbing actually win. Additionally, a much greater focus is put on the assorted supporting character, in contrast to both the original series and Kinnikuman Nisei, rather than have all the fights revolve around Suguru.
  • Base-Breaking Character: Overlapping with Americans Hate Tingle. It's rather ironic that Terryman is one of these to the Western fanbase. Most of the ire towards Terryman is that he's a wrestler that primarily uses submission moves, which isn't so much of a problem in itself as so much as that when juxtaposed with other wrestlers that pull off some insanely awesome wrestling moves, he looks rather lame in comparison.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Many, many examples.
    • Terryman is this both in-universe and in real life. In the very first popularity contest the manga had, he actually came first.
    • Ramenman. Initially introduced in order to give Kinnikuman a brutal heel wrestler to get him psyched up for his match against Robin Mask, he was so popular that he was elevated to secondary character status. After that, his popularity skyrocketed to the point where he even got his own Spin-Off, Tatakae! Ramenman.
    • Robin Mask's strong leaderlike qualities as a Face, and his terrifying effectiveness as a Heel makes him quite popular among fans. That, and the fact that he's just plain cool.
    • Warsman was popular to the point where he got his own prequel manga, which expanded on his original backstory and further cemented him as a ruthless but emotionally damaged Choujin.
    • Buffaloman. At the beginning of the seven devils arc (where he was introduced), they were initially setting up Black Hole to be the arc big bad, but Buffaloman proved to be so popular that he got upgraded to the Big Bad while Black Hole was reduced to a mere lackey.
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    • Sunshine and Ashuraman are quite popular among fans as well. The fact that they were Affably Evil and then eventually make a Heel–Face Turn helps too.
    • Neptuneman was an intimidating villain who not only gets his own movie, but also gets a Heel–Face Turn
    • The Ninja, he not only does a Heel–Face Turn, but he also shows one of the best fights in Ultimate Muscle
    • Akuma Shogun, the fact that he got his own movie says a lot.
    • To a far lesser extent than any of these, Leopoldon from Team Big Body, who is far more popular than the rest of the team including Big Body himself despite being one of the victims of The Worf Effect when sent up against Mammothman.
    • Among those whose primary exposure to the franchise is by collecting the M.U.S.C.L.E. figures, Satan Cross. This comes mainly from the fact that he was one of the few figures that was available in packs but was not pictured on the official checklist poster, making many people believe that he was incredibly rare (in reality, he was no more hard-to-find than most other figures).
      • The M.U.S.C.L.E. line also had Sneagator's claw form, which quickly became the most popular figure in the series, for reasons less related to any significance or character traits and more because it's a giant warty hand with a face on it.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: All the jokes about the 1980 Moscow Olympics are somewhat less funny considering that Japan (along with a lot of other nations) decided to boycott the games.
  • Growing the Beard: The story was originally a light hearted Monster of the Week super hero parody, until the Olympics arc, in which it switches gears into the Pro Wrestling Is Real epic that it is known for today.
    • Takes another one in the Seven Devil Choujin arc, where it fully evolves into a Shōnen wrestling series
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: In the Monster Extermination chapters, the chief of police would mistake the attacking monsters as wrestlers. Little did he know...
  • Jerkass Woobie: The series is filled with them, some examples overlapping with Iron Woobie and other examples overlapping with Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds
    • Kinnikuman. He may be rude, lecherous and cowardly, but it's hard to be nice to people when you're a laughingstock among superheroes and get no respect from anyone, even when you do actually help to save the day.
    • Warsman. He was a brutal, killing machine when he was first introduced, but he reveals that in the past, he was tormented and rejected everywhere he went as a child because of his hideous appearance, and only took to the ring so he'd be allowed to fight back. Even worse, his mechanical body malfunctions after 30 minutes of fighting, meaning that he literally cannot push himself beyond his limits. This makes it all the sweeter whenever he manages to turn a fight around, and earned him quite a few fans.
    • Buffaloman. In his introduction arc, he was a Blood Knight who only cared about power. Flashbacks in the arc showed that before his Deal with the Devil, he believed in fair fights and friendship in the ring, which displays of it from Kinnikuman and company made him deeply ashamed at his obsession for power and help him to Heel–Face Turn. It gets worse in the Throne arc, when it's revealed that he's actually the Last of His Kind of a Proud Warrior Race that destroyed itself because they did nothing but fight among each other and ends up stopping the Five Evil Choujin Gods from killing Kinnikuman Soldier using foul play because he doesn't want the same thing to happen to Kinnikuman's family.
    • Kinnikuman Mariposa. He was a thief and was the one who stole the Anolao Flame from the Robin family, but he literally had no other choice as his family was dirt poor and he would have probably died of starvation if he didn't steal to provide for himself.
    • Kinnikuman Zebra. He worked hard as a farmer to earn money to buy his way into the Choujin Society. His only friend during this period of his life was his pet zebra, Zebra Kid. After a really sad situation caused Zebra to kill his friend, his Start of Darkness began, as he immediately discards any concept that was foreign to the concept of money, ultimately paying his teammates to fight for him in the throne battle. His match against Kinnikuman ended as one of the biggest TearJerkers of the series.
    • Kinnikuman Super Phoenix grew up poor and alone, hoping that he could prove himself to be the heir and be taken away from his misery. His jealousy only increased when Kinnikuman was revealed as the prince of planet Kinniku, as Super Phoenix saw Suguru as an idiot who got money and recognition without working for them, while Super Phoenix was intelligent and had to struggle to survive. He gets better after Kinnikuman defeats him, leading to a heartwarming moment when Suguru considers him as a friend and family member and comes to his aid against the five evil Choujin by preventing them from killing him.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Skull Bozu, Super Phoenix, Suguru of all people during the Throne Arc
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Planetman crosses it with perverse glee in his match against Kinnikuman.
      • He first skirts the line when he imprints a pattern of the Earth on Kinnikuman, and then stabs the continents on Kinnikuman's body. With the added effect of hurting Kinnikuman, this also hurts the Choujins that come from the continent stabbed, breaking their life-preserving bubbles.
      • He further crosses it by using his secret technique, Planet Face to imprint the faces of Kinnikuman's friends and loved ones (including non-wrestlers like Bibinba and Kinnikuman's mother) on his planets so Kinnikuman can't attack him without hurting them, which manages to seriously piss off Kinnikuman.
    • Super Phoenix starts off being dangerously close to the horizon, but he pretty much crossed it when he says that Ataru deserved to die for running away from his parents.
  • Narm: "This is divine punishment for wounding my breast." Not even context can make it better. Sure, it's only narmy due to Values Dissonance, but...
  • Never Live It Down: Kinnikuman Big Body. A common joke among the fans about the Throne Arc is that Kinnikuman Big Body's sacred throne move is stepping into the ring, since that's all he did against Kinnikuman Super Phoenix before being hit at full force with the Muscle Revenger. That's something even Gear Master called him out on.
    • Heartwarming in Hindsight: In the 2012 manga, he finally showed off what he can do with his Choujin god-given strength and actually won against a very powerful Choujin with his Finishing Move the Maple Leaf Clutch. Big Body lost because he was forced into evil, but he won because he fought on his own will.
  • Older Than They Think: There are many who attribute the invention of the Kinniku/Muscle Buster to either Samoa Joe, the Smackdown Vs. Raw series, or King from Tekken, not realizing that the series predates all of them by decades.
  • Signature Scene: The Kinniku Buster. If you read a lot of shonen manga, chances are that you've seen at least one Shout-Out to it.
  • Ugly Cute: Kinnikuman with his mask on. Especially since he's very open and expressive.
  • Values Dissonance - The video for Megumi No Hito, which at first appears offensive, until you learn who the video is a homage to note .
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: Sure, it's common for female seiyuu to voice young male characters, but Meat's voice in the anime doesn't even give a slight indication that he's a boy.
  • What an Idiot!: Mayumi is usually known for making situations worse whenever he tries to fix them, but there was one point in the Throne Arc where he royally fucked up - when the revelation that one of the possible successors to the throne is actually your eldest son that was banished from the family could cause a total disaster in the world of Choujin, the last thing that you should do is hold the one book that could prove it true in a place where it could be stolen.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: See Moral Guardians.
  • The Woobie: Nachurigon. He was classified as a "loser monster", which lead to him being picked on by other monsters and even the humans that he's supposed to be attacking.
  • Woolseyism: "Kinniku" translates to "muscle" in English, but there's already a character whose last name is "Muscle" - Chairman Harabote Muscle, who isn't related to the family. In the English translation of the manga, his name is changed to Vance McMadd, which both avoids potential confusion and is a parody of WWE CEO Vince McMahon, which fits with the series' tradition of using parodies of well-known wrestling personalities.

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