One man's snarling three-headed dog is another man's cute little puppy.
A Fluffy Tamer is a person skilled with animals, and is especially good at the kind of snarling beasts which qualify to be called Fluffy the Terrible. A Fluffy Tamer isn't merely good with such creatures, they are the ones most likely to name them "Fluffy" in the first place. To them, such creatures are as adorable as any kitten or similar house pet. They would either be mortally offended by the idea of What Measure Is a Non-Cute? or hold it in completely opposite regard than your average person. The main drawback of such a pastime seems to be having to deal with consequences of Muggles and Idiot Heroes freaking out when they see a beast and mistake Fluffy Tamer for Damsel in Distress or something. Repeatedly.
Such characters are frequently a Friend to All Living Things. Other times this preference may only extend so far and won't encompass all scary beasts but perhaps just a particular kind. They may also be a Nightmare Fetishist, who finds beauty in all things terrifying.
A surefire sign of a Fluffy Tamer is speaking to such ravaging beasts in Baby Talk and not getting eaten. If the Fluffy Tamer works by being terrifying to all animals, she's less likely to call him Fluffy and more likely to name him George. Compare Admiring the Abomination, where the character is more impressed than afraid of Fluffy's acid spit and fifteen-inch fangs; contrast Animals Hate Him, who may think they're good with animals but really aren't.
- There is a story arc in Chocotto Sister in which Choko discovers a gigantic kitty cat (a.k.a. a panther), names it Kuro (the Japanese equivalent of a black cat named "Blackie"), and doesn't get eaten.
- In the Pokémon anime, Misty is known to adore all Water Pokémon, finding even Tentacruel beautiful. The only Water Pokémon she ever disliked was Gyarados. And that had more to do with a childhood trauma than the Pokémon itself (a manga version of Misty uses a Gyarados, too). Her Fluffy Taming doesn't extend beyond Water Pokémon however, and she finds Bug Pokémon repulsive.
- She makes a guest appearance later in the series, where she uses a Gyarados - and kisses its Poké Ball before throwing it.
- It's also the same one that gave her childhood trauma. Revealed why in a spinoff episode that she, as a young baby, crawled straight into the mouth of a sleeping Gyarados! The same spinoff episode shows how she overcame her fear and befriended the Gyarados.
- Alder in Pokémon Black and White is this way too, once he quits goofing off. The guy is able to flip a Gigalith which was rampaging through a town and destroying everything over with his bare hands, after realizing it's got a nail in its foot. Throw in a potion to heal the wound, and the thing calms right down. Of course, it didn't seem to work all the time. His Bouffalant goofed off during his battle with Ash.
- She makes a guest appearance later in the series, where she uses a Gyarados - and kisses its Poké Ball before throwing it.
- Kukuri of Mahoujin Guru Guru reaches the fourth level of a tower made for her to train her powers, the last before she reaches the top. There she must befriend a creature named Tora Tora before she can proceed. The previous three tests Kukuri did took her three, one, and two months respectively for a total of six. She has Tora Tora giving her horsey rides before the person giving her the test is finished killing time dancing.
- When Hikaru, Umi, and Fuu of Magic Knight Rayearth first entered Cephiro, they met a large flying fish. Umi and Fuu agree that, unlike Hikaru, their first instinct was not to pick it up and give it a hug.
- It's very much part of her personality: when the trio found an "injured puppy" (really one of Ascot's monsters disguised as a cute creature) Hikaru was the first to pick it up, bandage it, and care for it like it was her own dog. Even when it reverted to its true form as a whale-sized fire-breathing monstrosity, she STILL tried to get it to calm down and play nice, and was devastated when she had to put it down.
- Luffy from One Piece finds a huge foreboding three-headed dog on one of his adventures and decides to tame it. The sequence goes something like this:
Luffy: Okay. Shake.
All three heads of the dog bite Luffy. No really.
Luffy (soothing tone): Good dog. Now let go. Slowly. Carefully...
Three-headed dogs confused at his calm tone slowly let him go.
Luffy (smashing them into a wall): You bastard!
Luffy (to the now unconscious dog): Shake.
- Also, Robin found the dog to be cute, putting her in line with this. Luffy is later seen triumphantly riding his tamed pet.
- A minor incident occurs on Jaya, when Usopp happily plays with a tarantula that freaks out Nami and Sanji.
- And now Luffy feels an irresistible urge to tame an enormous octopus named Kraken. Knowing Luffy... 10 bucks says he'll do it.
- And he does. Even gives it a name. too.
- Luffy's new Haki abilities seem to give him this power as a bit of a secondary effect. That tends to happen when you're taught to stare at people in a way that tells even the most hardened criminal to shut the hell up and do what they're told.
- Konoka of Mahou Sensei Negima had this sort of reaction to a dragon once.
- While her personality is rather unlikable to others, Machi from Nagasarete Airantou is beloved by her Shikigami, who she treats as friend when all other summoners consider them mere tools. Machi's great-grandmother Yashiro is the same.
- While perhaps more of a Killer Rabbit Tamer, Tamako of Dennou Coil is the controller of the Satchii and Kyuu-chan anti-virus programs. She's also prone to giving them affection pet names like "Tama", a Japanese equivalent to "Fluffy," and praising them like one would a pet.
- Astro Boy's sister, Uran.
- Mizuki of Onidere wherever bears are involved. She can summon them at will and has gone to amusement parks and played Indian poker with them.
- Caro of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS was born with the ability to summon not one, but 2 dragons. One of them is an ancient dragon capable of wiping out a city, Godzilla-style. She does manage to befriend both of them, though, against the odds.
- Note that summon beasts are implied to be vastly more intelligent than a normal wild animal. The aforementioned ancient dragon, named "Voltaire", is also said to be a dragon god, whom Caro does not "summon" so much as call upon in times of great need.
- Misao Nanjo from Pani Poni Dash! has among her managerie squirrels, hamsters, fish, snakes, ostriches, and alligators. She absolutely adores them, gives them cutesy names based on what species they are, and the alligator once saved Becky from drowning.
- In Durarara!!, Celty turns out to have named her massive, undead, headless horse-turned-motorcycle Shooter. She thinks the way it terrifies random passers-by on the street is adorable.
- In Episode 13 of A Certain Scientific Railgun, Mitsuko Kongo arrives to a gathering with a snake wrapped around her. Everyone freaks, except Uiharu who coos over the snake and rushes over to pet it. Also, the snake wears a bow.
- In Softenni, the tennis club is attacked by a ginormous bear. Kurusu fights it to a standstill, naked. Then makes it so the rest of the team (except Chitose, who's carried by the neck of her uniform in its mouth) can ride it the rest of the way up the mountain. Then Kurusu waves goodbye to the bear, calling it her friend.
Comic Books[edit | hide]
- In the XXXenophile story "Rescue 911 a.d.," the unnamed hero goes goes into the dragon's lair not to kill it or take its treasure but to "ease its loneliness." May not count because he's half-dragon.
- In one Marvel Adventures issue, Hercules comes by and asks the Avengers to pet-sit two of his dogs: giant monstrous underworld hounds, one with three and one with two heads (though Hercules tells them apart by their different spots...) I even think one of them was the actual Cerberus... Anyway, not only does he treat them like cute puppies, so do the Avengers, who have nothing better to do and start treating them stupid tricks.
- This is the Avengers. They're the people who put "fight off invading alien armada" on their list of 10 things to do before lunch.
- If one of them was Cerberus, the other one may have been Orthrus.
- When she and Carnage first encountered the Doppelganger, Spider-Man foe Shriek stopped Carnage from killing it because she thought it was neat, and eventually turned it into a loyal little pet. To put things in perspective, Doppelganger is an animalistic, six-armed, fanged monster clone of Spider-Man with compound eyes. It got even freakier looking when it came Back from the Dead, mostly due the photorealistic approach the artist took.
- In The Chronicles of Riddick, the titular character is found at one point happily patting what was up until that moment a large, vicious, cat-like creature that seemed more than happy to tear into whatever it could find that stood still for long enough (which even snapped and roared at the inmate that happened upon the odd pair) with no explanation from Riddick besides a nonchalant comment of 'It's an animal thing.'
- The film Gamera The Invincible has a little boy named Kenny who befriends the titular giant turtle despite everyone else thinking Gamera's nothing more than a destructive monster.
- And, let's be honest, in the first movie that is exactly what Gamera is.
- Thorgrim, the henchman who cared for the giant snake in the movie Conan the Barbarian. He was suitably pissed when Conan and friends hacked off its head.
- In How to Train Your Dragon, Hiccup astounds his Viking community on how he is able to handle fearsome dragons without fear. However, this is because he has taken the time to seriously observe dragons and discovered that all the old negative assumptions about the beasts are wrong.
- In the Russian movie Polosaty Reys (Striped Freight), a whole bunch of tigers and lions are set loose upon a cargo liner they've been freight by (no gore, it's a comedy). The stewardess suddenly finds herself in favor of the predators, grooms them and even manages to herd them back into their cages. Doubled since she's played by an actual tiger trainess.
- In supplemental material, it's revealed that the guy who cried after Luke Skywalker killed the Rancor in Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi was one of these.
- No one should have needed the Expanded Universe to figure that out. It was pretty easy to infer from the way he bawled like a little kid who just lost his puppy ("Don't cry, big fella; we'll get you another Rancor." "I don't wanna 'nother Rancor!").
- Slightly more importantly, that same supplemental material reveals that Rancors are Fluffy the Terrible of the Gentle Giant variety; they're sort of like big, loveable apes with strong parental instincts. The particular Rancor from the movie fell victim to Jabba the Hutt's prejudices; because it looked big, mean, and nasty, he ordered it starved and mistreated so that it would make a good show when he threw people into it's pen. That's right, the Rancor is the Star Wars equivalent of a pit bull. If a pit bull were large enough to eat you in a single bite. They are even used as beasts of burden on their homeworld of Dathomir.
- In the live action film of The Jungle Book, Mowgli is this. The end of the film centers on him being able to look into Shere Khan's eyes and stop him in his tracks.
Literature[edit | hide]
- The most famous example is Harry Potter's Rubeus Hagrid. He has raised giant spiders, baby dragons, and a three headed dog. Their names were Aragog, Norbert, and Fluffy, respectively. He's a half-giant, so such creatures are less likely to hurt him, but he tends to not realize that most people aren't as indestructible as he is. This has landed him in trouble numerous times. Tom Riddle was able to use Aragog to frame him for opening the Chamber of Secrets and yet he never seems to learn. He's also a Fluffy breeder, credited with the creation of the Blast-Ended Skrewts, an incredibly dangerous and aggressive hybrid possessed of absolutely no useful qualities.
- Lady Sybil Ramkin from Discworld is this way towards dragons. Also worth noting is she likes Nobby Nobbs when she first meets him.
- Despite all evidence to the contrary, Nanny Ogg can only see her tomcat Greebo as the sweet little kitten she first took in. This would be the Greebo that is said to be able to fight and/or rape anything up to and including a four-horse logging wagon, and has killed at least two vampires: he ate one in Witches Abroad (said vampire was in bat form at the time), and the other one in Carpe Jugulum he just attacked violently for disturbing his nap.
- Hodgesaargh, Lancre's royal falconer, is somewhat of an example, although he doesn't name his charges "Fluffy". Still, he's successfully reared the most lethal feathered hunters in the world (which is, after all half the point of falconry). He just hasn't managed to tame them completely (admittedly, this is the other half) - which also gave him the second part of the name. And that's still better than some people could manage, given that Lancre's native birds of prey are described as having "a certain 'sod-you' disposition".
- This is how Letitia demonstrates she has more depth than Tiffany thought in I Shall Wear Midnight. Her reactions to a headless ghost and a screaming skeleton were to give them, respectively, a pumpkin to carry under her arm and a teddy-bear.
- In The Thrawn Trilogy, Talon Karrde keeps a pair of vornskrs, Sturm and Drang, as pets. Wild vornskrs are quite vicious and dangerous, as Luke and Mara find, but apparently surgically removing their tails curbs their aggression. Even so, Sturm and Drang are both hostile to Force-Sensitives, even if they don't make instant diving leaps of death, and won't listen to his commands to relax. Karrde does have the sense to have one of his people take the animals away when he talks to Luke.
- In Otis Adelbert Kline's novel Outlaws of Mars, the hero attempts to save a Martian woman he just met from a hideous lizard monster that he sees running towards her. After he kills it the weeping woman has him arrested for killing her pet that she raised from a baby.
- Dueling Shows The Addams Family and The Munsters both, due to how altogether ooky they were. The Addamses had a pet lion (Kitty Cat), an aggressive plant (Cleopatra), and Pugsley had a pet octopus. The Munsters were noted for their pet dragon, Spot, that lived under the stairs.
- Game of Thrones: Daenerys Targaryen, the "Mother of Dragons". Nuff said.
- Dungeons & Dragons
- Most editions have various "Beastmaster" kits. Naturally raising Up to Eleven in settings like Dark Sun, where a dumb lizard the size of a house is but one of many usual means of transportation and the desert has more than enough powerful beasts and semi-sentient monsters one could persuade to cooperate.
- In Third Edition, a Druid could start out with a pet wolf or cobra (or, admittedly, some cuddlier critters), and after gaining experience has the opportunity to tame larger and fiercer animals, such as a 35-foot-long (10.7m) dire tiger or a Tyrannosaurus.
- A nereid often has a pet, their taste in pets being enormous Sea Monsters, like giant squids, eels, and possibly even dragon turtles.
Video Games[edit | hide]
- Pokémon Diamond and Pearl has an NPC standing outside Amity Park (which only admits "cute" Pokémon) complaining about discrimination against his Steelix.
- Thanks to the complete aversion of What Measure Is a Non-Cute? any Pokémon trainer can become one of these. Want to raise a giant fire breathing dragon and call it Snookums? Sure, why not? The embodiment of nightmares? Player Characters will be Player Characters. However the Tamer Class among NPCs is the closest to this trope.
- Pet classes in MMOs will often count. For example, Hunters from World of Warcraft can tame things like Devilsaurs and Core Hounds.
- Mounts can be giant creatures like hellboars, tigers, and even small dragons
- An NPC example is Watcher Leesa'oh at the Cenarion Watchpost in Zangarmarsh, who gushes over her beloved tiger, Buddy.
- In Half-Life 2, Dr. Isaac Kleiner keeps a "de-beaked" headcrab as a pet. Its name is Lamarr.
- In the Final Fantasy series, the job classes Beastmaster and Trainer are precisely this, able to tame wild monsters from that cute little flying kitty to that rampaging three-headed hydra. The Mediator/Orator class in Final Fantasy Tactics can even learn the "Tame" and "Beast Tongue" abilities to use while equipping another class, and they only work on animals, leading to situations where a tiny White Mage is backed up by her new pet, the Dark Behemoth.
- In zOMG!, a labtech asks you to acquire technology from vicious prairie dog/cyborg aliens, in hopes that he can build a translator to communicate with them. When you meet him again in the Sealab Compound, he indicates that he can communicate with Grunnies, and that they gave him a heads-up you were coming.
- Colette and Raine from Tales of Symphonia will, if you defeat a monster with them in the party, have the following exchange.
Raine: I wonder what the enemy's name was.
Colette: I like "Poochy!"
Raine: No, dear, I was talking about the species.
Luke: "What's that monster called?"
Tear: "I thought it'd be cute..."
- In Fall From Heaven, one of the available leaders for the Balseraph Civilization is Keelyn, a young girl who was Raised By Summons - she basically grew up around minor demons and summoned monsters, and eventually used her affinity for them to seize control of the kingdom. Her favorite is a towering demon named 'Giggles'.
- In Ratchet and Clank: A Crack in Time, Qwark somehow manages to tame an Agorian War Grok, a feral, bloodthirsty beast the size of a small house. He calls it "Snowball".
- In Star Ocean: The Last Hope, there's Lymle with her demonic canine Cerberus whom she refers to as "Doggy". Also, a catgirl is normally not considered Fluffy the Terrible, but when you consider the fact that she crossed over alternate dimensions and was treated as a monster by special forces black ops, well...
- Dwarf Fortress.
- Formerly this was supposed to be the job of a Dungeon Master - having one appointed lets you tame anything with the [PET_EXOTIC] tag, which means you can greet a siege with a flock of War Giant Eagles or Giant Cave Spider web-turrets. Of course, the Dungeon Master was bugged into non-existence and eventually was dropped, though the players often replaced those tags with regular [PET] and [TRAINABLE] tags in the raws to make any beast tameable by default.
- In the new system, all trainable animals work the same way - with "animal trainer" skill. But a civilisation in worldgen will have domesticated particular animal only if it's on "domestic animals" list or lives where the settlements are built, and normally cannot have "exotic" ones domesticated on its own. Sometimes migrant animal trainers arrive with their own pets (even giant cave spiders), however. The catch is that if your civilisation doesn't have knowledge of taming the creature in question and it's caught in the wild, it cannot be tamed fully, thus you want your trainer to be skilled enough by the time you try, and then go through the second generation before they are mature, otherwise animals revert to semi-feral and then wild at a wrong time in the middle of your civilians and "FUN" ensues. But when the trainer is good at this...
- Anyone who owns a Mabari in the Dragon Age games. While Mabari do act like adorable puppies around the people they like, one can't forget that they are sentient warhounds fully capable of tearing apart armored warriors.
- In Dead Rising 2, Chuck can tame a tiger by the name of Snowflake. Not only that, but he can even give it to his daughter as a pet.
- Rune Factory series lets you tame monsters, name them, pet them, and make them do chores or fight with you. A monster "wooly" is known for being so cute that almost everyone in-game like them, especially the in third game, where a few heroines have a common quest to discover a certain golden wooly. That golden wooly is the protagonist in his monster form.
- Dragon Quest V has a cheerful boy Parry Gotha taking interest in his father's ability to capture and tame monsters.
- Fiona, one of the Demoniac heroes in Heroes of Might and Magic III, gives combat bonuses to any Hellhounds and cerberi in her army. Her backstory states that she worked as a circus animal tamer before her family were enslaved by the Kreegans, and her experience with animals means she's possibly the only being who can pacify their violent temperaments.
Web Comics[edit | hide]
- In The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob, Molly's pet Snookums is a giant space monster shrunk to the size of a basketball, but Molly had already made friends with him when he was still the size of a house.
- Tsukiko give us this disturbing little number in Order of the Stick:
Tsukiko: (after creating a goblin zombie) Hello, little one, I'm your mommy.
Zombie: I crave mortal flesh!
Tsukiko: Aww, Baby wants his num-num, doesn't he?
Web Original[edit | hide]
- In the original Protectors of the Plot Continuum series, Agent Jay Thorntree gets Cuteness proximity with Watchers and Balrogs.
- In later spin-offs, many other agents exhibit this trait towards large monsters of the unfriendly and canonical variety, and nearly all agents towards minis.
- In The Impossible Man, Angela loves her pet Chupacabra, Eli. Just don't call it a Kaijumon.
- Shephard from Shepard's Mind has his little alien weapon critters, named Sparky (the shock roach), Gil (the spore launcher), and Barney (the barnacle grapple).
- The Nostalgia Critic hates "relatable" animals and they despise him right back, but give him a drooling demon dog from Star Trek and he'll descend into squeeful goo.
- The Powerpuff Girls episode "Three Girls and a Monster" features Blossom and Buttercup arguing Brains VS Brawn to deal with a new monster. Bubbles flies up to it, asks it to leave "pretty please with sugar on top" and it peacefully walks away.
- On the Futurama episode "Spanish Fry", Lrr and Nd-Nd, the fearsome rulers of Omicron Persei 8, meet Bigfoot and start gushing over it as if he were a fluffy bunny.
- The beloved pet of Avatar: The Last Airbender's King Bumi is a goat-gorilla named Flopsie.
- Lilo from Lilo and Stitch single-handedly turns a rampaging, gentically-modified alien into a loving pet. She procedes to do the same to 625 other such creatures in the series by finding "their one true place."
- And in one of the episodes, Mrs. Hasagawa has adopted and tamed multiple experiments—but she insists on calling them her 'cats' despite none of them looking any close to one.
- On The Fairly OddParents, Cosmo has a pet hydra named Snowball.
- Harley Quinn and her "babies"—the Joker's pair of snarling pet hyenas.
- Molly from Bump in the Night tries to tame the Closet Monster in "Comforting the Uncomfortable."
- Charlotte from Making Fiends has the ability to friend most, if not all, of the fiends Vendetta makes, even to the ability to taming all her guard dog puppies, and keeping them as pets.
- Noah from Total Drama World Tour. When the contestants get attacked by an angry yeti in Paris, he's able to train it to play fetch with an imaginary ball via All Animals Are Dogs. This is justified as he mentions that the trick 'always works on my dog'.
- Fluttershy from My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic is the Friend to All Living Things. This includes mythical creatures and giant monsters. Example? In the second part of the pilot, she calmly flies up to a Manticore that'd been kicking the group's butt, pulls a thorn out of it's paw, and calms it down, all without a hint of fear.
- It licks her.
- Though she has her limits. In "Feeling Pinkie Keen", a vicious Hydra is determined to devour her, and she can't do anything but flee for her life.
- She keeps a respectful distance from the truly dangerous under normal circumstances. The only thing she's legitimately afraid of is adult dragons. Her logic for all those other things she can face down is "because it's not a dragon", except for Spike, where the logic is "because he's tiny and adorable and not big".
- In season 2 she does meet an actual three-headed dog out of hell and tames it within seconds.
- If Eric Cartman taming Cthulu himself to engage in mass murder doesn't qualify, nothing will.
- Among the pets owned by Ruby Gloom's Iris, we have a giant flying worm called Squig and a venus flytrap named Venus. The episode "Iris Springs Eternal" ends with her happily cultivating an entire garden of flytraps actively trying to eat her. She even successfully taught Venus to speak.
- Nick Tatapolis is the only person in the world who can control his adoptive son (without having to use force or Mind Control). Said adoptive son happens to be Godzilla.
- This is the job of César Millán as featured on National Geographic Channel, his specialty being breeds that are (unfairly) thought of as Fluffies... Pitbulls and Rottweilers.
- Steve Irwin may not have given them cutesy names, but he definitely was good with dangerous animals.
- An episode of That's Incredible featured an otherwise normal American family that reared a brood of large cats - 10 cougars, 4 bobcats, a jaguar, and a lynx. All were treated affectionately as if they were housecats.
- Your average circus, zoo or water park animal tamer, charged with telling giant carnivorous animals to perform tricks for our amusement.
- Killer Whales come to mind, although they and pandas may be a subversion in that they are generally considered cute.
- Killer Whales also don't attack humans in wild, and most accidents involving whales in captivity had them going mad (who can blame them?) or simply forgetting their size / making a mistake (which is usually deadly for a trainer, as Killer Whale weights 7-9 tons, and human 70 – 90 kg).
- This brave fellow shows that if you raise Polistes wasps from an early age and desensitize them to your fingers they will happily eat whatever you hand them on your finger. It's implied he's not only feeding a wasp, but a queen wasp whose behavior could determine whether the colony will accept him or sting him mercilessly.
- ASPCA agent Mark MacDonald, who often appears on Animal Precinct, one of the Animal Cops series, is known as the Beastmaster (not to be confused with The Beast Master)for his ability to calm and handle the various creatures the agents are called on to rescue.