Beach Episode

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Sun, sand, bikinis, and grenades... wait, what?

Art: Why does every anime series under the sun have to have a fan-service episode? An episode in which the cast all wander around in swimwear or less for no real reason? It's so low-brow.
Pip: Shall we confirm that by watching it again?

Art: Absolutely.

Simply put, an episode where the cast decided to take a break and go to the beach or a swimming pool for some wet and splashy fun.

Often combined with or immediately following a Recap Episode, the Beach Episode exists solely for the purpose of getting the female (and sometimes males too) cast into bathing suits. Sadly for the fanboys, beach episodes are usually extreme examples of Filler and treated accordingly.

Naturally, it also acts as a Breather Episode in arc-heavy stories.

Common in, but hardly limited to, anime series. Often shows up in Side-Story Bonus Art.

Cousin to the Hot Springs Episode, which usually takes place in highlands. Often, the actual beach also gets replaced by a swimming pool.

In anime and live-action television, a Beach Episode might overlap with the Vacation Episode, usually as a trip to a tropical locale.

Expect one of the characters, usually a female, to exclaim "It's the ocean!" when the gang first arrives on the scene

Note: It sometimes occurs that the Beach Episode is interrupted by the actual plot of the story. For example, the heroes are taking their well deserved beach trip when the villains decide to show up and cause trouble.

Sometimes you'll meet the Surfer Dude here. Also a good spot for a random Beauty Contest. Smashing Watermelons is a popular party game, as is volleyball. And since people usually go barefoot at the beach, don't be surprised if some Foot Focus shows up. Also expect some Beachcombing.

Examples of Beach Episode are listed on these subpages:


Examples of Beach Episode include:


Advertising[edit | hide | hide all]

Comic Books[edit | hide]

  • The post-Zero Hour Legion of Super-Heroes comic has a Beach Issue with Legionnaires #77, when most of the Legion takes a vacation on the resort planet Summer World. This was the outgoing creative team's swan song, giving the kids one last nice day of Silver Age-ity fun times before the incoming creative team would turn everything Darker and Edgier with a story called "Legion of the Damned." Sigh.
    • In the general spirit of the trope, we also have Legionnaires #7, in which the kids take a vacation in Atlantis, allowing for much swimsuit fun.
  • The second issue of the first ongoing Gen 13 comics series is a veritable beach/swimsuit extravaganza, made even more notable by the revelation of a major cast member as a homosexual.
  • Gold Digger, already a fanservice-laden comic, has a "Summer Annual" of pinup beach pictures and short comics drawn by a variety of artists.
  • Hellblazer. Subverted in that it quickly turns into Nightmare Fuel. Luckily it was All Just a Dream.
  • Marvel had several Swimsuit Specials in the 90's featuring such exotic locales as Dinosaur Island, Madripoor, and the Dark Side of the Moon.
  • A lighter issue of Strangers in Paradise takes place on the beach following a serious story arc.
  • The main characters of Scott Pilgrim go to the beach in Scott Pilgrim Gets It Together. The sequence is the only coloured part of the otherwise black-and-white series.


Fan Works[edit | hide]


Films -- Live-Action[edit | hide]


Literature[edit | hide]

  • Can a non-visual book have a Beach Episode? Apparently so! In Larry Bond's First Team series, the main character, basically a Cowboy Cop of spies, once refuses to meet his overseer anywhere but on a beach. In a Middle Eastern country where women's swimsuits come in only two sizes: tiny, and microscopic. And she does it! In another scene, one of his female agents is wearing a tiny Wicked Weasel bikini.


Web Animation[edit | hide]


Web Original[edit | hide]


Real Life[edit | hide]

  • The U.S. 2008 Presidential Election had one of these. In between serious debates on Energy Policy, Climate Change, Terrorism, and Healthcare Reform, someone leaked a picture of not-yet-President Barack Obama in a swimsuit and a media storm ensued. All serious discussions were put on hold for the day while every major news network focused on then-Senator Obama's washboard abs. Only in America.
    • And then, a couple weeks later when Sarah Palin was announced as the Republican Vice Presidential nominee, the media spent another day focused on a clearly faked picture of her in a bikini holding a gun.