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YMMV / Spice and Wolf

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  • Adaptation Displacement: The anime is much, much more popular than the source novels. Semi-averted as the anime just stops without resolving much, which normally leads to anime fans picking up the novels, usually joining the book fandom in the process. Nevertheless, even the overwhelming majority of entries on this very tropes page are focused on content that made it into the anime and only pay lip service to the books that followed it, despite the fact that the two anime series only adapted content from the first five novels out of seventeen in the original story arc (not counting Spring Log) and even then it skipped volume 4 entirely.
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  • Alternative Character Interpretation: There is some ambiguity as to the real personality of Nora Arendt. Lawrence believes that she's as naive and innocent as she seems, but Holo claims that this is only a facade.
  • Audience-Alienating Premise: It's kind of hard to sell a series about medieval economics, which is most likely why the marketing plays up what little Fanservice there is (which also backfired and gave people the wrong impression of the show.)
  • Awesome Music:
    • "Hashiru". It usually comes on or before Lawrence senses trouble.
    • The first opening. A more understated example of this trope, but it can still stir your soul. It almost perfectly encompasses a feeling of loneliness and happiness, particularly in the chorus, where the female vocalist is joined by an underlying male one to match the two main characters.
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    • "Perfect World", which is the ending theme for the second season, definitely qualifies as well. It is an absolutely beautiful piece that is performed by Rocky Chack, who also performed "Ringo Biyori ~The Wolf Whistling Song~", the previous ending theme. It's less whimsical than the latter, but the sheer poetic nature of the lyrics and the heartwarming way it reflects Holo and Lawrence's relationship more than compensates.
  • Best Known for the Fanservice: Just by looking at a Google Image search of the title, one would assume Holo spends half the series naked. She first appears in the nude as a consequence of, well, not having any clothes with her when she goes back to her human form and is naked in the OP, but for the most part remains fully clothed. The fans, most official images, and merchandise (and ThisVeryWiki) would have you believe otherwise.
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  • Cant Unhear It: It's pretty easy to hear the voices of Lawrence and Holo in either language when reading the books.
  • Designated Villain: Amarthy from Season 2 is an aversion because he is an antagonist that is not depicted as a villain. On the contrary, he's like this Knight in Shining Armor that fights with economics. Not only does he not use spying and underhanded methods, his goal is to free Holo, and he tells Lawrence about his plan straight-up rather than trying to trick him. Indeed, he's only a "villain" in so much as he is a rival for Holo's love.
  • Fandom-Enraging Misconception: It's "Holo", not "Horo", no matter what the fansubbers will tell you.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: Lawrence catching the man he's selling pepper to using skewed scales becomes a LOT less funny/awesome after Lawrence discovers the actual value of the weapons he bargained for.
  • Growing the Beard: The sixth book in the series (after the final arc in the anime) sets off a three-book epic that introduces Lawrence's totally-not-apprentice Cole as a third main character as well as a central driving plot (a church conspiracy involving one of Holo's deceased great-wolf kin's remains).
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "I watch it for the economics" started as a meme from the anime.
    • The "Stupid potato" line from the dub. (In the original Japanese version, she called it an "Evil Potato", which might have been even funnier.)
    • "Korbo" as a nickname for Holo, based on her partly illegible signature on Amarty's contract in the second season.
  • Moe: Holo can act soft, vulnerable, cute etc. to get what she wants from anyone but Lawrence, but she also has some genuine moe moments, either when she's eating an apple, demonstrating her naivete about the day and age, or having a woobie moment.
  • Sweet Dreams Fuel: Sure it's not without its tragic elements, and doesn't gloss over the hardships of travel, but it just serves to make their relationship all the more heartwarming.
  • Tear Jerker: Holo finding out that Yoitsu is gone, and confronting Lawrence. This extends to their interactions with the few animal spirits left in the world. Their time of power has come and gone, and most just accept it as the way of things and just want to live out their days in peace.
  • The Woobie: Holo when she gets lonely and homesick.
  • Woolseyism: The translations try to make the dialog appropriate for the medieval-esque European setting by having the characters speak in modern but formal English with few or no contractions. Words that are rare in modern usage but still valid like "vexing" are used as well. This makes the dub dialog sound suitably old but it avoids the problems caused when pseudo-old English is attempted.

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