Follow TV Tropes


YMMV / The Prince of Tennis

Go To

  • Americans Hate Tingle: Played a bit in Latin America: While it does has its fans in that region, the fact the tennis sport itself (along with golf as well) is normally considered as an elitist sport normally reserved for the filthy rich makes really hard to empathize for Latin American viewers with the cast.
  • Ass Pull: The opinion of the fandom when Konomi introduced the concept of "The Tennis Pinnacles", with many of the fans labelling the series as "Tennis Dragon Ball" after that point.
  • Advertisement:
  • Awesome Ego: Atobe. The guy really knows how to put on a show, organize parties and make an entrance (by dropping to school in parachute from a jet, mind you.)
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Ryoma. Some really like him as he is cute and a good player (it's debatable if this is thanks to the more sympathetic portrayal in the anime), others consider him a Smug Super Designated Hero, and there's also the small portion that just ignores him in favor of the other characters.
    • Atobe. He is a great rival with an Awesome Ego, good looks and insanely rich, while others despise him for being a arrogant character.
    • Horio. Just your regular Tagalong Kid or an annoying load with a big mouth.
    • Also Sakuno to a lesser extent. She is either bland, too girly and shy to be with Ryoma, or a very needed female character in a series full of guys who is loyal and a good foil to Ryoma.
  • Advertisement:
  • Best Known for the Fanservice: While many agree the series is not very well written, female fans admit they only read it because of the characters. This also is applied for the anime and, especially, the musicals.
  • Bishōnen Jump Syndrome: By far, Prince of Tennis is the most infamous offender of this, since the cast is filled with pretty boys and handsome men getting sweaty over tennis. The series has attracted a huge Estrogen Brigade as a result.
  • Broken Base:
    • Fans of the series devided about the "Tennis Pinnacles". Some think it's a cool concept, while others consider the series "Dragonball Z with racquets" because of this.
    • New Prince of Tennis. Some fans are glad the series are continuing after the National Tournament, while others think it's just a lame attempt for Konomi to cash in with Fanservice.
  • Covered Up: We'll all forgive you for thinking the "Valentine•Kiss" singles originated from this series, given the double digit amount of covers across the franchise's lifetime. The song by itself was originally written for and sung by Sayuri Kokusho, and was popular in its own right.
  • Advertisement:
  • Crazy Awesome: The series at least has motivated half of the fandom to buy a racquet and take tennis lessons.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Atobe, Yukimura, Kite. And their teams.
    • A lot of people like to forget that Atobe in particular tried to ruin Tezuka's entire tennis career by wrecking his arm in their match, for no real reason other than he wanted to. Sure he comes to regret it and has a moment of redemption, but it's a fact that seems to commonly slip from the memory of most.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Hyotei. The entire team is the most popular rival school, to the point that Konomi managed to bring Hyotei back for the nationals. It's debatable if the fanbase is larger than Seigaku's. Special mention to Atobe and Oshitari, clearly the two most popular from the team.
    • Almost as popular as Hyotei, there's also the Rikkaidai team. The eight of them HAVE to appear somehow in the series. Mainly Sanada, Yukimura and Kirihara, and close call to Niou as well.
    • Another big example of this showcase is to count the returning characters for New Prince of Tennis. If a character is in that training camp, there you have your Fan Favorites, including the return of former Seigaku Captain, Yamato Juudai, and Canon Foreigner Ryoga Echizen.
    • From New Prince of Tennis, Irie Kanata is the only high schooler in the ranking poll, helped a lot by the fact that his voice actor is Hiroki Aiba (the third Fuji in the Tenipuri Musicals). Also it seems Tokugawa is shaping into another Dark Horse.
  • Estrogen Brigade: Due to the Cast Full of Pretty Boys, girls flocked to the franchise in droves, and even more came when the musicals started catching fans' eyes. It's regularly advertised in magazines aimed at female otaku and does get ads in shoujo magazines as well. In fact, most outsiders would probably laugh if you told them this is actually a shounen manga. We're tempted to say that there's so much fangirl squee, that whatever male audience is left is the Periphery Demographic!
  • Foe Yay: Like you wouldn't even believe! It also doubles as Fanservice.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!: A considerable amount of fans and casual viewers seem to think this about New Prince of Tennis, since it's still the same plot from the original series with some aesthetic changes and a lot more new characters.
    • From the same portion, some people also think it's So Bad, It's Good, since it also feels like the series is now self-aware of its own tropes, without taking itself so seriously.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: ...Who has NOT been paired up with either Keigo Atobe, Tezuka Kunimitsu and Shuusuke Fuji in fanfiction and doujinshi, people? Sakuno also verges on the trope.
    • Also Ryoma, naturally due to being the main character and by far the prominent shota of the series.
    • Kirihara counts as well. He's been paired with his whole team, half of Seigaku, half of Hyoutei and with a bunch of of other characters from just about any team. If they've interacted, they have been shipped.
  • Like You Would Really Do It: In New Prince of Tennis, half of the middleschoolers are eliminated from the U-17 Camp (among them there're Sanada, Niou, Inui, Kaidoh, Momoshiro, etc. and even Ryoma and Kintaro). You knew they would endure the Training from Hell and return to the Camp somehow!
  • LGBT Fanbase: Oh there was plenty of gay male fans for this show in its heyday. It still has a gay following somewhat.
  • Memetic Molester:
    • From the anime, Professor Hanamura Aoi, from Jousei Shounan. She's creepily attached to her tennis team and is constantly fawning over them and Ryoma.
    • Also Konjiki Koharu, who aside from doing gay jokes with his doubles partner Hitouji Yuuji, is constantly fawning over Kaidoh or other hot guys. In the Pair Puri omakes, he has been seen having crushes on Atobe, Tezuka, Kamio, Saeki and Sengoku.
  • Misaimed Fandom: An Tachibana's actions during the Senbatsu arc were not supposed to be seen as "awesome" and "proper of a strong female character". They were supposed to be a part of An Aesop in regards to how seeking violent resolution to a conflict is not worth it. Especially considering that Kirihara could have died after that Staircase Tumble—and that almost everyone blamed Kamio for the incident! And that An herself broke down crying in regret when Ryoma unmasked her and Kamio called her out!
  • Moe: Sakuno and Tomoka, especially during the Jyousei Shounan anime arc.
  • Narm: Shishido's Important Haircut is supposed to show his determination in improving himself to rejoin the team, but the horrible Off-Model animation dampers the serious mood it's supposed to convey.
  • One True Threesome:
    • The fandom likes the idea of building an infamous OT5 between Atobe, Fuji, Ryoma, Sanada, and Tezuka to avoid Ship-to-Ship Combat. Sometimes they also add Yukimura to the mix.
    • There's also the Rikkai Troica variant where Sanada hooks up with both Yanagi and Yukimura.
    • After the last episode of the series, there was also de "Future Captains Ensemble", which consists of Hiyoshi, Kirihara, Kaidoh, and Zaizen.
  • Pop Culture Holiday: Happy Summer Valentine, Tenipuri's annual valentine event/popularity poll. Fans send in chocolate to vote on their favorite characters, which is counted up and revealed on August 14th. The practice got so huge, the results day graduated to becoming an official Japanese holiday in 2018.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Sakuno's manga incarnation. Lots of people who don't stomach her in the anime adore her in the manga. Conversely, other people bash her Yamato Nadeshiko manga self, while saying that her Shrinking Violet anime self is a more realistic portrayal of girls her age.
  • Retroactive Recognition: From the Musical: Hajime Mizuki would go on to form a dance team in Zawame City. Meanwhile, Kunimitsu Tezuka is the Space Bu-Star, Houou Soldier!note .
  • Ron the Death Eater: While Ryoma can be a jerk sometimes, his anti-fans are rabid against him, especially when he's against ATOBE.
  • Rooting for the Empire: Many fans actively bash Seigaku for being too overpowered or just less interesting than the rival teams. Often, merely because it's the team that Echizen belongs to.
  • Shipping Goggles: In many fics and for most of the female viewers, there're very few that don't get paired with another male character, and is more common to find fics where Everyone Is Gay.
    • The most common example are Seigaku fics, with Momo/Ryoma, Tezuka/Fuji, Oishi/Eiji, Inui/Kaidoh and Kawamura is het or paired with Akutsu, or any other combination aside from the Fan Preferred Couples. The same applies with Hyotei and Rikkai... or any other school, for that matter.
  • Ships That Pass in the Night: Happens a lot in fanfiction, given that there are A LOT of pretty boys to pair up, even if they haven't have canon interactions. With that said, that didn't stop Konomi from making all those omakes...
    • There're also other fans who ship the coaches Hanamura and Sakaki.
  • Signature Song: Tenimyu's "You Are the Prince of Tennis" practically represents the whole musical franchise, as it's not only shown up in some capacity in most of the popular Niconico Douga "Suites", but also saw a lot of parody online.
  • Take That, Scrappy!: For the ones who hated Ryoma, Tezuka bitchslapping him in the anime filler so he wouldn't play against Kevin is definitely this.
  • The Un-Twist: For some it was fairly obvious, since the latest chapter where it's revealed that Tezuka would be playing for Team Germany, right after it was revealed that Ryoma could switch to Team America just by location.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!:
    • Rikkai fans have been whining for several years about how the team was portrayed in the anime and about The Switch between Yagyuu and Niou not being featured in their match. Lots of fans of the manga often say it of the original after the Hyoutei arc (the anime had caught up to the manga, changes started to be made).
    • Subverted later, when the OVAs start covering the Nationals arc and get praise for portraying some rather... polemic manga scenes in a much more understandable and sympathetic light. I.e., Ryoma cutting Atobe's hair when he's still almost unconscious in the manga is switched to Ryoma having second thoughts about it, Taki offering to have his own cut hair instead to spare Atobe the humiliation... and then Atobe swiping Ryoma's razor and willingly cutting his own hair. Or the rendition of the Rikkai matches, which also include flashbacks of the Rikkai regulars anxiously waiting for Yukimura in the hospital, remarking on their True Companions bond.
    • The Film Adaptation does a lot of this:
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: As Y: Ruler of Time points out on many occasions, the show presents more interesting characters that could have been better leads than what we get with Seigaku:
    • The Fudomine entire team, since they fit more into the Shonen-Team archetype: They are a No-Name school with a group of underdogs and a new inspiring captain with a Dark and Troubled Past.
    • Yuuta's brother complex.
    • Miyuki Chitose, being a tomboy girl with stage-fright trying to be the best at tennis.
    • Kintaro's journey, who has an even more cheerful and interesting personality than Ryoma.
    • Even from Seigaku itself fans are more interested in the other regulars' backstories or Character Developments than Ryoma.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Symbolic?: The Tezuka/Fuji duel in the anime is chock-full of symbolism slipping dangerously into Ho Yay territory.
    • Krauser's special technique... crucifies people.
  • What The Hell, Casting Agency?:
    • For the Tenimyus, most of the Seigaku 2nd Cast (except for Shirota Yuu, Aiba Hiroki, Kujirai Kosuke and Araki Hirofumi, who were good singers and actors) the others were horribly out of tune. There were many instances where it was painful to hear them reach high notes (most notably all the songs that featured Adachi Osamu and Suzuki Hiroki singing).
      • It was justified with Yanagi Kotaroh (Ryoma), because his voice was affected by his car accident, but still no excuse for the others. Many fans still forgive his performance because of this.
      • Even thought Araki Hirofumi was a very decent singer (he even had a solo), fans still were fixated on the fact that he was very short to be playing Inui, since even Fuji (who is supposed to be the shortest of the seniors) was taller than him (also justified since Aiba Hiroki is taller).
      • The one who got more criticism was Adachi Osamu as Kikumaru, since he didn't look like the character at all, even with the wig on. Not helped by the fact that he wasn't a very good singer either.
    • For the Live-Action film, even if the film adaptation did not do an Age Lift, it was an abuse of Suspension of Disbelief in the casting of RIKIYA as Egate Mcleod Higaki. You can seriously reassure the guy looks 15-19? That's also applied for the cameos of the rivals, many Tenimyu actors.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: