5 Popular Anime Tropes That Aren’t Really Boring


Like any other entertainment medium, anime is more than guilty of being filled with tropes so bad you can’t help but roll your eyes. From cliched beam fights to bringing characters back from the dead, the genre has a lot going for it.

Still, just because something has been used a lot in anime doesn’t automatically mean it’s a bad thing. There’s actually a reason why certain tropes exist, because they’re so good that you don’t mind them being used again.

Below, we’ve compiled a list of just a few of these anime tropes, explaining why they aren’t so boring.

Tournament Bows

Best Anime Tropes

Image source: Toei-Animation

When it comes to arc-based tropes, tournaments have to be the one cliché fans never see, especially when done right. Whether it’s a simple test to find out who’s the best or life and death stakes, this anime trope is such a fun storytelling device.

This allows shows to introduce new characters, spotlight lesser-used ones, and even land a few surprise wins here and there. My Hero Academia’s UA Sports Festival is a prime example.

In this one, we are introduced to powerful characters like Shinso and Ibara for the first time, showing that there are more heroes worthy of attention outside of Class A. The overall winner of the tournament can also be somewhat surprising for the views, as it is not the main protagonist of the series.

This is just one of many examples of major anime tournaments. If you want to know more, check out our article on the top 15 ranked tournament bows.

Don’t judge a book by its cover

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Image source: madhouse

When it comes to anime, you can never judge a character just by their outward appearance. Someone who looks small or puny can be incredibly strong, while the intimidating, intimidating guy is really just a big teddy bear.

One Punch Man is a pretty good example of this anime trope, as Saitama looks like a bald caped goofball to anyone who doesn’t know his real strength. When he shows his true power, onlookers, villains, and even other heroes always have the same shocked and shocked reaction.

On the other hand, you also have characters like Takeo in My Love Story. Although he may look like an absolute unit compared to everyone else, he is actually one of the purest and sweetest people in the world, always going out of his way to try to make those who surround him feel better.

Seeing this happen in any anime is always fun, as it never gets old seeing the reaction the opposite of what should happen.

tragic stories

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ed and alphonse elric

While it might not seem like the deepest medium to someone who doesn’t watch it, any true anime fan will tell you that the genre is hoping for some pretty deep, challenging, and nuanced subject matter. There are many series that deal with trauma, depression, and all sorts of other issues that we as humans struggle with in our real life as well.

It’s because of this relativity that the tragic backstory trope works so well in anime when done right. While it might hurt to see characters like Naruto being ostracized from the village and lonely at the start of the series, it makes it all the more rewarding when he’s able to overcome his difficulties by the end of the show.

Overcoming tragedy and hardship is something everyone has to do, so seeing the characters thrive through them feels like they’re a light at the end of the tunnel for all of us. If nothing else, seeing tragedy unfold nicely always makes for a great story arc.

Passage of the torch

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all could
Image source: Studio Bones

When it comes to action-oriented anime, you’ll be hard pressed to find one these days that doesn’t use the Passing of the Torch trope. Whether it’s high school volleyball like Haikyuu or a superhero game like My Hero Academia, pretty much all of them have stories where a wise mentor teaches their padawan wisdom, only for the pupil eventually becomes the master.

The Passing of the Torch trope is also very useful for world building. Since the main character is usually inexperienced, they serve as a vessel for the sight when it comes to introducing characters, explaining powers, and providing stories that would otherwise feel like a dump of exposition. .

It’s also a lot of fun to watch a character grow and progress in this way. While All-Might might be our favorite character to begin with, there’s just something special about seeing Deku go from a weak character to the strong character he is now, especially considering how much he will continue to grow. in the future.

A calculated plan

Best Anime Tropes

Anime tropes
Image source: Studio Pierrot

The anime is filled to the brim with lots of muscular people who use insane force to fight their way to victory. But while being strong often plays an important role in winning, sometimes being smart is even more important.

Clever characters in anime plan so meticulously that every action they and their opponent take is thought out before the fight even begins, which usually leads them to say, “It was all part of my plan.” While it certainly sounds corny on paper, it’s still nice to see the events leading up to the calculated situation, especially when you go back and look at it in hindsight.

A notable example of this can be found in Naruto with the Shikamaru vs. Temari fight. This fight feels like every one of Shikamaru’s plans are thwarted by Termari, despite the shard behind them. In reality, however, each was just a diversion to distract her from being moved to a location that causes her to lose almost instantly.

Death Note as a whole is also a fantastic example of this anime trope done well, as it focuses on the mental chess match between Light and the bright minds out to bring him down. It’s literally an example of the pen being mightier than the sword, as the protagonist writes in his Death Note with detailed plans to kill his victims without anyone knowing it was him.


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