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The Prince of Tennis is a long-running sports anime and manga series, and has spawned a live-action movie, video games and over a dozen musicals. What's it about? Well, "boys playing tennis" ...duh!

Okay, but seriously, folks... the story's about this kid named Ryoma Echizen, a pre-teen tennis prodigy who transfers to Seigaku (a shortened form of Seishun Gakuen, used by everyone in the series), a school renowned for its rich tennis tradition. In the next ranking tournament he beats some of best players in the school and secures a place on the regular tennis club. From then on, the series follows the Seigaku tennis club's progress towards the middle school National Championship, facing a new rival team in each new story arc. The characters develop their own styles of play (complete with increasingly bizarre and complex shots). Even the sometimes hard-to-approach Echizen eventually learns what the game means to him as time goes on.

The manga has ended in Japan (where it is wildly successful), with over 40 volumes and 40 million copies sold in that country alone. The sequel, Shin Prince of Tennis, is currently ongoing and now also has the anime airing. A Live Action Adaptation Movie was also made. Two animated movies have also been released in cinemas: The Two Samurai: The First Game, co-released with short movie A Gift from Atobe (2005) and The Battle of the British City (2011).

Also! The Prince of Tennis Character sheet has just been added. PLEASE, if you've got new tropes for the characters of the series, add them there.


Tropes found in The Prince of Tennis: Edit

  • Adaptation Distillation: Each installment of Tenimyu does a great job of condensing an entire arc of the manga into a two hour musical.
    • Also, the OAV have been praised by lots of fans for re-telling situations from the manga in quite a better light and portraying some characters more sympathetically. A clear example is the resolution of the Atobe vs. Ryoma match in the Nationals, where Ryoma's borderline Jerkass Stu-ish behavior is quite toned down and Atobe even gets to cut his hair himself.
  • Against the Setting Sun: Oishi and Eiji, Chitose and Shiraishi. Also Ryoma and Tezuka, who always end up playing by the sunset, or staring at each other in the beach volleyball episode.
    • Even Ryoma and Sakuno get one in the anime, walking home as the sun sets.
  • All There in the Manual: Some of the most interesting, funny, quirky data bits on the characters are in the fanbooks. Specially the 40.5 one.
    • Definitely, Apparently Ryoma wants a DS, and apparently Kirihara Akaya still believes in old St. Nick
  • Artistic Age: Lampshaded more than once. "What, are these kids REALLY 15?!"
  • Badass Bookworm: The Data players (Inui, Yanagi). Mizuki, Koharu and Dan also use their data like this sometimes.
  • Badass Normal: Whereas the likes of Tezuka, Ryoma, Chitose, Kirahara and others like them can use the "Muga no Kyōchi (Self-Actualization)", Inui, Atobe and Fuji rely on pure skill.
  • Bare Your Midriff: Sakuno and Osakada in their cheerleader outfits.
  • Batman Gambit: A vital part of the tennis strategies. Notable users are Inui, Yanagi, Tezuka, Yukimura, Kawamura, Fuji, Atobe...
  • Battle Amongst the Flames: Actually tennis amongst the flames. But still... Happened in the movie between some tennis underwater and tennis in the sky.
  • Battle Aura: goes hand in hand with the physics-defying tennis moves.
  • Beach Episode: Episode 90, when Seigaku and Rokkaku play beach volleyball. A whole OAV is also dedicated to this. And it's bloody hilarious.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Fuji, Kawamura, Taichi, sometimes Oishi, and Yukimura.
  • Big Eater: Momoshiro, Echizen, Tanishi and Kabaji.
  • Big Fancy House: Atobe's mansion. Tezuka and Echizen's Japanese-styled homes.
  • Bishie Sparkle: Taken to ridiculous levels for the effect of Fanservice.
  • Bland-Name Product: Echizen drinks Ponta. Though, in the Viz version, he drinks Fanta.
  • Blond Guys Are Evil: Kevin, to some degree. He's more of a Jerkass than a true evil, then evolves into a Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
  • Bob Haircut: Mukahi Gakuto. Yes, it's just a bitchy boy.
  • Boke and Tsukkomi Routine: Bane and Dabide's trademark. Oshitari did NOT appreciate Dabide trying to rope him into them, though.
  • Bunny Ears Lawyer: Yuudai Yamato, Tezuka's ex captain: he looks and acts like a Cloudcuckoolander, but has a razor-sharp intuition and can give you really good advice if you're willing to listen to him. Eiji Kikumaru acts child-like and happy, but has an extremely sharp vision that not even Ryoma can keep with AND scaringly good reflexes, on top of his flexibility and high jumps.
  • But Not Too Foreign: Jackal is half-Brazilian, half-Japanese. Makes some sense: Brazil does have a rather large Japanese colony.
  • Butt Monkey: Kaidoh, during the "slice of life" episodes. Inui, whenever he tries to escape from punishments or challenges.
  • Calling Your Attacks ("KIKUMARU BEEEEEAM!" "JAAAACK KNIIIIIIFE!")
    • This is almost subverted in most cases, actually. After a move has had its dramatic debut, the character usually refrains from calling out his own move. Naturally, this does nothing to deter the random people standing around watching the match from wildly belting it out each and every time its used.
  • Canon Dis Continuity: A minor one. When the Emerald Pair first forms, Inui tells Kaidoh that his Data Tennis started out in his first year of middle school as trying to get more info about Tezuka in order to beat him. Later on, it turns out that his friend from elementary, Yanagi, was the one who taught him Data Tennis.
  • Canon Immigrant: Echizen Ryoga, originally created for the film, he makes his canon debut in recent chapters of The New Prince of Tennis manga.
  • Can't Catch Up: The Fudoumine and Rokkaku tennis clubs.
    • To a certain degree Yamabuki as well. Apparently, they're useless without Akutsu.
  • Cast Full of Pretty Boys: And how! One of the first implementations of Bishonen Jump Syndrome, in fact.
  • Catch Phrase: "Mada mada da ne!". "Yudan sezu ni ikou". "Ore-sama no bigi ni yoi na". "Gekidasa daze!". "Tarundoru". "Yukimuraaaaaaa!". "BUUUURRRRNIIIING" "Hoi hoi!" "Gekokujou." "Motto Tonde Miso."
  • Censor Steam: While the camera lovingly pans up Atobe Keigo's body while he takes a shower.
  • Chick Magnet: Echizen (who barely notices), Atobe (who notices and LOVES it), Wakato (likewise) and Oishi (who hates it).
  • Chivalrous Pervert: Yuushi Oshitari, but very slightly (it's more played up in the dating sims, no matter what Fanon says).
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Jiroh, when not playing. Shinji, when mumbling. Yamato seems to be one of these, but it's just a cover.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Tomoka, in regards to Ryoma.
  • Coat Cape: Yukimura, when we see him after he gets out of the hospital. In fact, the last match makes a point of noting that Ryoma is able to knock his jacket off while playing. Atobe is also guilty of this.
  • Combat Clairvoyance: The users of Pinnacle of Great Wisdom get this.
  • Combat Commentator. Come ON, what's a sports manga without them? Main culprits are: the captains and coaches of each team, Inoue, Shiiba, the first year Seigaku students, Nanjiroh and Inui.
  • Contemplate Our Navels: Parodied with Shinji Ibu's long, odd mumbling rounds. The voice messages in his single CD's are all composed of random mumbling about practically anything.
  • Cooking Duel: More like eating duel.
  • Cool Big Sis: Yumiko Fuji, Nanako Meino, Saori Shiiba.
  • Cool Old Guy: Ojii of Rokkaku, Banji of Yamabuki.
  • Cool Old Lady: You don't get them cooler than Sumire Ryuzaki.
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: Yuuji Hitouji, in regards to his partner Koharu Konjiki ("That's adultery!")
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Kawamura, again.
  • Curb Stomp Battle: Chitose's defeat at Tezuka's hands, after the former was established as one of the very best players in Japan.
  • Dating Sim: The series has spawned several of those with the player in the role of a normal schoolgirl who gets to interact with the Tennis Boys. Some are official and can count as sort-of spin-offs or Alternate Universes (Gakuensai no Oujisama, Rush and Dream, the two Doki Doki Survival), others are fan made (Orange Heart, a Hyoutei-only one made in Flash).
  • Deadly Upgrade (Kawamura and the Ishida's Hadoukyuu, the Zero-Shiki Drop, Yuuta's Top Spin Serve, the Pinnacle of Perfection)
  • Defeat Means Friendship: The Seigaku and Fudoumine tennis teams become friends after their match. The Rokkaku tennis team sort of counts as well, except they become friends with Seigaku before ever playing against them. (It certainly helps that their vice-captain, Saeki, is Fuji's Forgotten Childhood Friend)
  • Did Not Do the Research: Takeshi Konomi is either ignorant about the rules of tennis, or chose to ignore them.
  • Double Standard: Sakuno and Tomoka are vilified by the Estrogen Brigade for being fangirls, but Jiroh and Dan's fanboyishness is seen as adorable and sweet.
  • Dramatic Wind: Fuji Syuusuke's third counter, Hakugei. Also, Yanagi's Kamaitachi serve.
  • Dropped a Bridget On Him: Tezuka mistakes Miyuki for a guy at first. Then, she drops her Nice Hat...
  • Eagle Land: Let's count all the stereotypes used in the American arc of the anime!
    • Also at the start of the New Prince of Tennis anime, not one but two enormous American flags hang in the metro station. Just to make absolutely sure you remember where Echizen is.
  • Engrish: Nanjiro does this at times, saying things along the lines of "Me no Nanjiro," or "Sorry, no speak the english!"
  • Mr. Fanservice: Comes with the Fanservice.
  • Every Girl Is Cuter With Hair Decs: Sakuno, An, Tomoka and the Iijyuin twins use hair jewelry.
  • Evil Teacher: Harumi Saotome from Higa.
  • Eyes Always Shut: Yanagi, Fuji, sometimes Koharu.
  • Eye Scream: Chitose, Ryoma, Fuji
  • Fan Service: Mostly for the ladies, though.
  • Fan Girl: Tomoka Osakada and Sakuno Ryuzaki in Seigaku, An Tachibana in Fudomine. Subverted with Kotoha Kitazono from Tsubakikawa: she pretended to be a fangirl to spy on Echizen and Atobe, but they weren't fooled and either ignored her, or called her out on it.
  • Filler: An interesting case. The anime has quite a bit of filler throughout, but much of it results in Crowning Moments Of Funny.
  • Flung Clothing: Atobe Keigo then snaps his fingers to stops his supporters' cheers, then flings off his uniform's jacket as part of his dramatic first entrance onto the tennis court.
  • Foe Yay: See "Fanservice".
  • Fun Size: The various chibi episodes.
  • Game-Breaking Injury: Tezuka, Tachibana and Oishi are victims of this Trope while Kirihara is a proud user. Also, Chitose, in his backstory. Who gets one of these from Tachibana and almost loses sight in one of his eyes.
    • Subverted when Shusuke sustains a concussionwhile playing against Kirihara, causing him to be stricken with temporary blindness. He plays BETTER!
  • Gargle Blaster: Inui's juices.
  • Generation Xerox: Kaidoh looks a lot like his father, Shibuki. So does his little brother Hazue. Hilarity Ensues when the three have breakfast together.
  • Genius Bruiser: Sadaharu Inui, Renji Yanagi, Genichirou Sanada, Choutarou Ohtori, Yuushi Oshitari, Munehiro Kabaji, Tetsu Ishida, Gin Ishida, Senri Chitose, Hiroshi Chinen. All of these guys are excellent tennis players... and over 180 cms tall. In fact, Kabaji is 193 cms tall.
  • Genius Ditz: Jiroh Akutagawa.
  • Genki Girl: An, Tomoka, Kurumi
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Shiraishi's Catch Phrase is "OOOOH, ECSTASY!" Good one, Konomi, how did you get away with it?
    • Not to mention Momoshiro in the anime, who sees Nanjirou following Ryoma and Sakuno around and ends up calling him a Lolicon. "He must be following her!"
  • Girlish Pigtails: Tomoka and Miyuki.
  • Gratuitous English: Rare manga example: Ryoma's "mada mada dane" is rendered on his speech bubbles as "You still have lots more to work on...".
    • Many characters frequently use English phrases as well; some have named their tennis moves in English, ("Moon Volley", "Laser Beam", "Speed Bullet"), while others use them regularly. For instance, Kawamura's BUUUUUUURNIIIING, BABYYYY!!!, and "Lucky" Sengoku.
      • Sengoku is actually interesting. While he often says "lucky", he also uses minor phrases like "thank you". His pronounciation is slightly better than most other in the series, but he still claims that he is no good at English.
    • What about the Invitational Members arc? The American players spoke Japanese to each other, but a very deformed version of English to their opponents. The same goes for their fangirls paparazzies and coach.
      • Its possible that the reason they speak Japanese is simply because the show was made for Japanese viewers, most of which probably wouldn't be able to follow the conversions in English and thus had them speak Japanese to one another and using the bad English talking to imply that they are speaking two different languages.
  • Handsome Lech: Kiyosumi Sengoku; his first apparition has him oggling the Seigaku female tennis team, and in the manga that scares the crap out of them at first. Nanjiroh also counted in his younger days, right before he hooked up with Rinko; he's more of a Lovable Sex Maniac now.
  • Hello, Nurse!: Hanamura, Yumiko, Yuuki
  • Heroic Resolve: In the middle of an informal tennis match he was losing against a member of the Shishigaku tennis club, Tezuka finally overcomes his shoulder injury when his opponent aims a direct shot at his protegee, Miyuki, who is barely recovering from an Heroic BSOD.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Parodied during the yakiniku battle. Poor Shishido
  • Heterosexual Life Partners: Oishi and Eiji, Momoshiro and Echizen, Fuji and Tezuka (Ho Yay ahoy, some say). On ther female side, Sakuno and Tomoka, and maybe Sakuno and An.
  • Heavy Sleeper: Jiroh. Also Akaya Kirihara, in his very first appearance (he fell asleep on the bus while going to school and woke up near Seigaku... this is notable because Seigaku is in Tokyo, and Kirihara doesn't even live in Tokyo).
  • Heroic RROD: Tezuka
  • ~Hey, It's That Guy!~: Several of the actors in the stage musical have gone on to perform in Toku series. In particular, Kamen Rider has several Tenimyu alumni, including Kouji Seto (Wataru Kurenai/Kiva) as Kikumaru, Masahiro Inoue (Tsukasa Kadoya/Decade) as Atobe, Ryota Murai (Yuusuke Onodera/Decade!Kuuga) as Shishido, Dori Sakurada (Kotaro/NEW Den-O) and Renn Kiriyama (Shotaro Hidari/Double) as Bunta. Super Sentai also has their fair share of Teni Myu alums, with Hiroki Suzuki (Jan/GekiRed), Hirofumi Araki (KuroJishi Rio), Hiroki Aiba (Ryuunosuke/ShinkenBlue), Kyousuke Hamao (Aguri/GoseiBlack) & Kento Ono (Haido/GoseiBlue)
    • There are also several musical actors that have gone on to become seiyuus, most notably Mamoru Miyano as Fudomine's Testu Ishida.
      • Not to mention that Momo's first actor in the Tenimyus, Eiji Moriyama, eventually became the voice actor of Fudomine's Shinji Ibu. Hello flashback.
  • Hippie Teacher: To a degree, Osamu Watanabe from Shitenhouji.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Mizuki, who was defeated in a really humiliating manner by Fuji after he treated Fuji's beloved younger brother Yuuta like an expendable pawn.
  • Hot-Blooded: Kawamura when in Burning Mode, Momoshiro, Tomoka. Outside of Seigaku: Shishido and Mukahi (Hyoutei), Kirihara (Rikkaidai, mixing it with Blood Knight), Kamio (Fudomine) and Kintarou (Shitenhouji).
  • Hot for Teacher: Played with in Reiji Shinjou's obsessive loyalty to his coach, Aoi Hanamura. Hanamura herself practically ogles and fangirls her own pupils when she's in really high spirits, both in the Jyousei and the Senbatsu arcs, though that's more of a Running Gag than anything.
  • Hot Shounen Mom: Akutsu's mother, Yuuki. She's so beautiful and young-looking that Kawamura's friends mistook him for a someone who Likes Older Women when they saw them talking. Also, Tezuka's mother Ayana.
  • Ho Yay: See "Fanservice". Has its own page: Prince of Tennis/Ho Yay
  • Hypocritical Heartwarming: Atobe berates Tezuka for sacrificing his arm in his latest match against Yamato. Ahem, what was his plan during their first match?
  • I Am Not Left-Handed: Ryoma sometimes uses his left hand to play, when in fact he can use both.
    • Actually in this case it's I am not right-handed; Ryouma's a lefty who can play with either hand.
    • Furthermore, in this series, it is apparently more common to be left-handed, for some reason. Still, the opposing characters always have the same "ZOMFG! He's left handed!!" reaction. Almost half of the cast is left handed, while approximately one quarter of the real-life population is.
      • Among those lefties, we might just find some of the best players as well. Ryoma, Tezuka, Shiraishi, Chitose, Niou, Saeki, Zaizen, Fuji Yuuta, Mukahi Gakuto, Kite and Kai are all using their left hand. And considered to be some of the best.
        • Most tennis players have to be ambidextrous to a certain degree, in order to hit their backhand properly.
        • Kai from Higa Chuu actually has one of these moments; up to a certain point of the game, he uses his right hand. Then he changes not only to his left, but also with a reversed "stabbing" grip.
  • The Idiot From Osaka: Played more or less straight by Kintarou (who's naive and seems to have problems when reading kanji, as well as having a very... * special* imagination), parodied/subverted by Hitouji and Konjiki (who play up the dumb stereotype to their advantage in the courts. Hilarity Ensues when they try it with Momoshiro and Kaidoh)
  • Ill Boy: Seiichi Yukimura is a subversion on this trope. Not just for his gender, but because he gets better and is revealed to be a Knight Templar.
  • Inaction Sequence: During tennis matches.
  • Instant Fanclub: Subverted (Tomoka and Sakuno are the only stable members of the "Ryoma-sama Fan Club") and used straight (Atobe's, Wakato's, Oishi's and the Rikkai team's cheerleaders)
  • Image Song: Literally hundreds of them.
  • Important Haircut: Shishido, Tachibana. Atobe, later (although it can be considered subverted in this case, because the haircut doesn't change him and he has a wig made to look exactly like his old hair in a day or two.
    • Also Kabaji
  • Improbable Age: These kids are good for a bunch of junior high schoolers, and the second and third years don't really look their age (this is actually a running joke within the series).
  • I Was Quite a Looker: Ryuzaki-sensei was damn hot when young.
  • Jerkass : Akutsu, though he evolves into a Jerk with a Heart of Gold after the Yamabuki matches.
  • Jerk Jock: The Rikkaidai team skirts the line (though they're also made quite sympathetic), the Higa team crosses it per orders of their Evil Teacher.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Several characters - more specifically Ryoma, Atobe, post Yamabuki matches Akutsu, Shishido, Mukahi, anime!Kirihara, Kevin and Kaidoh (though the latter can be argued to be a male Tsundere).
  • Kansai Regional Accent: Shitenhouji and Oshitari Yuushi.
  • Keet: Jiroh Akutagawa, Eiji Kikumaru (partially; he's taller, heavier and more mature than the usual Keet), Taichi Dan, Kintarou Touyama, Mukahi Gakuto.
  • Knight Templar: The Rikkaidai players, who will stop at practically nothing to win.
  • Kuudere: Ryoma and Yanagi, in the anime.
  • Lampshade Hanging: The most recent shinpuri chapter has Yamato commenting on Tezuka's constant need to sacrifice himself for his team, complete with a montage of all the incidents. It's about time someone actually convinced him of his recklessness.
  • Large and In Charge: Played with. With the exception of Sanada from Rikkaidai, the captains and/or subcaptains rarely are the tallest in their teams. In fact, Kevin is both the shortest player and the captain of the American team.
    • Only partially. Akazawa of St. Rudolph is actually the tallest on his team, and still their captain. Though, when that is said, it's Mizuki who is their de facto leader.
    • Yamabuki and Fudomine also has questionable heights on their respective captains.
    • The main reason for this is probably those large power players every team so conveniently happens to have at least one of.
  • Lethal Chef: Sadaharu Inui. Subverted because it's voluntary (Inui Juice, anyone?)
  • Lightning Bruiser: Unlike Fragile Speedster Kamio, Kenya Oshitari has the speed and the stamina.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters (Considering each team has seven regulars... )
    • Don't forget that some teams also have a large number of non-regular members as well (Hyotei, for example, has over 200 members)
    • And every other random dude that feels like passing by and making himself a part of the story.
  • Lovable Sex Maniac: Nanjiroh, Sengoku
  • Master of Disguise: Hiroshi Yagyuu and Masaharu Niou. More the former than the latter, though (unexpectedly, since Niou is known as a trickster, but it's later revealed to be something Yagyuu does with at least one other character).
    • Actually, during Niou's match against Fuji during the Nationals arc, it is shown that his abilities to imitate others, or disguise himself, far succeeds those of any other copy player in the series, including Yagyuu. The OVA "Another Story" also shows that he can impersonate his team members perfectly, and independant of anyone else.
  • The Messiah: Ryoma and Yukimura. Curiously, both of them mix their Messianic qualities with different shades of jerkiness (Ryoma's arrogance and lack of social skills, Yukimura's obsessions)
  • Mind Control Eyes: Eiji and Oishi when they "synchronize" in the courts.
    • Parodied in the OVA where Koharu and Yuuji appears to do it, but in the end only does their ridiculous 'Synchro swimming'. On a tennis court. I kid you not.
  • Mistaken for Gay: Hilariously subverted with the Comedy Tennis that is the trademark of Koharu and Yuuji from Shitenhouji.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Yes, they exist! Aoi Hanamura is the biggest example, and so is Yumiko Fuji.
  • The Musical: Collectively referred to as Tenimyu by fans. The musicals focus on various arcs in the manga but have differences. Female characters are omitted from the musicals and certain changes have been made to the stories.
  • My Kung Fu Is Stronger Than Yours: A lot of the characters, what with this being a sports series. Seigaku is often seen training, specially Kaidoh, Momo and Kawamura. Fuji secretly develops his fourth and final counter when he realizes his "Triple Counter" won't be strong enough to win at Nationals. Hyoutei's Shishido's initial story arc was all about training to become stronger after being humiliated in a match against Fudoumine's Tachibana. Atobe develops Koori No Sekai after Hyoutei's loss at the regional tournament.
  • My Name Is Inigo Montoya: Kirihara, during the match against Nagoya Seitoku
  • No Sense of Direction: Sakuno, Kintarou.
  • Not a Morning Person: Ryoma.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Nanjiroh. He looks like a perverted, lazy monk with a stubble... until you ask him for a tennis match, where you can see that despite being retired for more than a decade, he's STILL a badass tennis player.
    • Another exaple is Mikiya Banda aka Banji from Yamabuki; under his all smily face we have a razor-sharp mind and admirable wits which STILL make Ryuzaki and Nanjiroh mad after 25 years and helped him outsmart Akutsu to make him join the team without getting a punch to the face.
  • The Obi-Wan: Tezuka's grandfather towards his grandson. Tezuka himself towards Echizen, because he's always telling him to become Seigaku's pillar of support (particularly dramatic after his potentially career-ending injury in the match against Atobe, which forced him to temporarily leave his team to get treatment. Also, Tezuka towards Miyuki, and possibly the Rikkai Troica (Sanada, Yukimura, Yanagi - specially the latter) towards Kirihara.
  • Opposing Sports Team: Comes with the territory.
  • Parental Abandonment: Very curious case-by-case examples. See the entry for more info.
  • Pet The Kitten - Karupin, Echizen's cat, serves to humanize Echizen as he's shown to genuinely care for the animal. Kaidou, who's got the In-Universe nickname "The Viper", is the one who finds Karupin when it wanders off and can be seen playing with it.
  • Playing Cyrano: Subverted because Momoshiro attempts more or less often to have Ryoma noticing Sakuno a bit more, but always fails.
  • Plucky Girl: Tomoka, An, Miyuki, Narumi.
  • Power Trio: The Three Demons of Rikkai: Yukimura (Ego), Sanada (Id), Yanagi (Superego)
  • Pride Before a Fall: Shishido, Ryoma in the anime.
  • Rescue Romance: Parodied at the beginning. Ryoma didn't even know he was rescuing Sakuno from Sasabe: he's a Heavy Sleeper who, right then, only wanted his nap back.
    • His parents play them straight: their relationship starts as Love At First Punch, only developing some more and going into Slap Slap Kiss when Nanjiroh rescues Rinko from her abusive coach.
    • Averted with An and either Momo or Kamio. The guys rescue her from having to date Atobe, but there's no Relationship Upgrade with any of them.
  • Retired Badass: Nanjiro, despite being younger than the standard. In fact, Nanjiro was only a match away from winning Wimbledon and earning a Grand Slam when he decided to retire to be able to teach Ryoma tennis.
  • Scary Shiny Glasses: Inui, Yagyuu, sometimes also Tezuka and Oshitari.
  • Screen to Stage Adaptation: The first installment of Tenimyu back in 2003 was the first of a ridiculously popular series of musical adaptations of the manga. Each consecutive musical focuses on the matches against each of the rival teams that Seigaku faces, and is surprisingly faithful to the original story. To date, Tenimyu has had over a dozen different installments, several Dream Lives (concerts that are outside the sequence of the story), and has helped launch the careers of a plethora of Japanese pop-culture idols.
  • She's a Man In Japan: The So Bad It's Good Latin-American dub flips the gender of Jyousei Shounan's Tanaka twins. Yeah, both of them are very girly looking, but...
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Toyed around, inverted, played straight, etc. in a case by case situation with the doubles players.
  • Serial Escalation: The special tennis moves become increasibly more improbable as the series progresses.
    • Then there's this. It's so over the top the creator of the manga laughed his ass off at the scene.
  • Serious Business: Who knew the world of Japanese middle-school tennis was so competitive?
  • Sixth Ranger: Chitose for Shitenhouji, Hiyoshi for Hyoutei, Kirihara for Rikkai and Ryoma for Seigaku (although both Kirihara and Ryoma are completely assimilated, with Ryoma obviously being the Designated Hero).
  • Shorttank: Tomoka, Kurumi in the anime. Rinko was one when young.
  • Shrinking Violet: Sakuno, in the anime.
  • Shut UP, Hannibal: Kite and Rin, on Saotome-sensei.
  • Slap Slap Kiss: Tomoka and Horio seem to be a pre-teen, G-rated version of this trope. Before they got married, Rinko and Nanjiroh's relationship also was like this.
  • Smug Snake: Mizuki, Kite, Saotome-sensei
  • Spell My Name with an "S" - Syuichirou, Shuuichirou, Syuitirou... Let's just settle with Oishi, mmmmmkay?
    • Don't even get me started on Syusuke. Or would that be spelled Shusuke? Shuusuke? Syuusuke? HMM.
  • Stern Teacher: Ryuzaki, Hanamura (when she's not in Fan Girl mode), Sakaki from Hyoutei.
  • The Stoic: Tezuka (there's a reason why the infamous Robo Zuka doujinshi series exists). Sanada tries to be stoic, but loses his temper far too often to really qualify.
  • Super-Deformed: The chibi episodes
  • Team Dad: Ojii. Tezuka and Sanada counts as much younger versions.
  • Team Mom: Again, Oishi. You don't get the "mother of Seigaku" nickname in canon for anything, don't you? And he's not the only one: Jackal Kuwahara from Rikkaidai is also Team Mom for his team, having to frequently take care of Kirihara.
    • Also, Ryuzaki-sensei sometimes acted like a surrogate mother for her pupils.
    • This troper finds Saeki a bit on that side for Rokkaku as well.
  • Tenchi Solution: The fandom likes the idea of building an infamous OT5 between Atobe, Fuji, Ryoma, Sanada and Tezuka to avoid Ship-to-Ship Combat. There's also the Rikkai Troica variant where Sanada hooks up with both Yanagi and Yukimura...
  • The Thing That Goes Doink: Tezuka and Echizen have those in their house
  • The Three Faces of Eve: Sakuno Ryuzaki is the Mother, An Tachibana is the Seductress, Tomoka Osakada is the Child.
  • Three Amigos: The three first years (Horio, Kachiro, Katsuo) as well as the Rikkai Troica (Yanagi, Sanada, Yukimura) are all-male versions of this.
  • Tournament Arc: Nationals, pre-Nationals
  • Training From Hell: Parodied with the methods devised by Ryuzaki-sensei and Inui; the training itself is normal, but if one or more of the players fail to accomplish it, they're forced to drink revulsive concoctions prepared by Inui as punishment. These "juices" are so infamous that the whole Seigaku team (except for Fuji, but then again he's got * interesting* tastes) is * terrified* of failure because of them.
  • Troubled but Cute: Echizen, Kirihara.
  • Tsundere: Tomoka "Tomo-chan" Osakada. Gushy and fangirly towards Ryoma, sweet and protective towards Sakuno, spunky and straightforward towards everyone else, and Slap Slap Kiss-y towards Horio. Ryoma's mother Rinko also was like this when young, evolving into a mild Yamato Nadeshiko after getting married to Nanjiroh (she still doesn't give the control of the relationship to him).
  • Two Guys and a Girl: An, Momo and Kamio.
  • Tyke Bomb: Kirihara, to some degree Kevin.
  • Unlucky Childhood Friend: In canon, Akira Kamio in regards to his crush on An Tachibana. In yaoi fanfics, either Yanagi or Saeki.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Kirihara (more exactly, his Devil Mode) and formerly Tachibana. Subverted in the latter's case since Tachibana doesn't use violence anymore after he almost caused Chitose to lose an eye.
  • Victory by Endurance: The bout between Karou vs Ryoma. Karou's tennis style is to force his opponent to run from one side of the court to the other, making them too tired to return his volleys. Ryoma turns this around on him by forcing him to keep his knees bent during the whole game, using up twice as much endurance, instead.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Mizuki has a spectacular one in the Saint Rudolph arc.
  • What Do You Mean It's Not Awesome?: Tezuka caused the extinction of the dinosaurs.
    • Or simply tennis.
    • Atobe's method of getting to school, base jumping off a stealth bomber.
  • What Do You Mean Its 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.
    • Let's not forget the chibi episodes, people.
  • We Meet Again: When Seigaku run into Higa chuu in Osaka, as the latter are stuck there because they have no money to get back home.
  • White-Haired Pretty Boy: Niou, Shiraishi in the manga (he has greyish brown hair in the anime), Saeki in the anime (in the manga he's a blond), Ohtori.
  • Wild Card Excuse: Ryoma's excuse for being late: "I was helping a pregnant woman to the hospital." Later in the story Oishi makes the same excuse, but he was actually telling the truth.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: See what happens when either Sakuno, Miyuki or An are threatened by bullies.
  • Yamato Nadeshiko: Sakuno, in the manga. And in the anime, Narumi Iijyuin (whose twin younger sister Kurumi is a Shorttank). The mothers of the players, logically, also are like this: special mention goes to Kaidoh's mother Hazuki, Tezuka's Hot Shounen Mom Ayana and Fuji's mother Yoshiko (sho is called one in manga canon).
    • In the anime, Ootori can be seen as a male Yamato Nadeshiko. Tall? Check. Polite? Check. Wise Beyond Their Years? Check. Focused on his goals? Check. Very competent in his "mission"? Check. Very devoted to his partner Shishido? Check...
      • Ootori fits in the mold, okay, but what about Oishi? If someone's a male YN, it's him, consiering he's a male Team Mom who's extremely devoted to Tezuka and Eiji and later makes many sacrifices for the team. Specially when he forfeits his regular position to let Tezuka (manga) or Ryoma (anime) make use of it.
    • Genderflipped and subverted with Seiichi Yukimura. The local Ill Boy looks and acts the part eerily well with his long-ish and wavy black hair, pale skin, polite speech patterns (complete with his soft voice) and gentle off-courts behavior... but he's revealed to be a Determinator Magnificent Bastard in regards to tennis. Not to mention that his very stern and masculine-looking sub-captain, Genichirou Sanada, defers to him quite a bit.

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