It's not like I like tsunderes or anything, I'm just interested in anime history okay?!

I just happened to be on the site, so don't get the wrong idea!

Geez, j-just tell me who the first tsundere was already, Baka!

I didn't post an image just for you, what are you saying!

EDIT: For clarification, I'm looking for the first known character that expresses tsundere qualities, rather than the first character that was labelled tsundere.

  • 2
    When you widen the scope to more than just anime&manga, I am quite sure that you can find examples of that characterization far earlier. There is nothing new under the sun, especially in writing fiction.
    – Philipp
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 11:47

5 Answers 5


According to The Otaku Encyclopedia: An Insider's Guide to the Subculture of Cool Japan, Lum Invader from Urusei Yatsura is possibly the first tsundere to exist (and also potentially the source of all moe)

enter image description here

Urusei Yatsura started manga distribution in 1978 and Lum's cold exterior (but in actuality being kind and loving) accrued her the title.

However, Sayaka Yumi from Mazinger Z (1972) appears earlier in history than Lum, despite the popular support for Lum's claim. Sayaka, whilst generally a pleasant character, is brutish and brash towards the main character's affections - despite having a crush on him.

enter image description here

  • 4
    Lum is tsundere?? no way!!! Lum is very affectionate of ataru and doesn't shy showing it, she get angry because ataru is literally wooing other woman.
    – user17961
    Commented Sep 16, 2015 at 6:17
  • Lum being the first "tsundere" is something that no one actually familiar with the show would claim. Like the preceding user said, Lum would never shy or be embarrassed to show affection openly - quite the opposite actually: she would probably love to be able to get Ataru to be a little more honest about his felling. At best, she could be a low-level Yandere, and even that is a BIG stretch. A real yandere would actually kill "onichan" if he is outside her grasp, while Lum would just severely punish Ataru if she thinks that she can still be with him.
    – SPArcheon
    Commented Dec 19, 2023 at 9:35
  • In multiple cases she was ready to leave Ataru and go on with her life when she tough that there was no future for them to be together.
    – SPArcheon
    Commented Dec 19, 2023 at 9:36

"Tsundere" is a rather new term which came into popularity in 2005, and an early account of its use was in 2002.

Thus, to apply the term to any character created before 2002 or so, a tsundere would be categorized as such retroactively. In this case, the character was not techincally tsundere when it was created, since the mangaka/director/whoever did not consciously have the concept of tsundere in mind at that time (we could say that the character became tsundere afterward, since tsundere wasn't a thing at the time that the character "lived and breathed").

The character type has existed for a long time, but Japanese fans might disagree on who is the earliest character to whom the label could be applied to. It is likely that the term would not be bothered to be applied to characters from obscure series or to supporting characters from early anime works simply because those characters are not famous, even if they would fit the definition. So it is very debatable to declare which character is the earliest tsundere, unless Japanese fans settle upon a generally-agreed list of which older characters count as tsundere.

To assess this based on English-language sources would be to rely on the opinions of otaku from non-Japanese worldviews/cultures to delineate which characters are retroactively tsundere and which are not. This is problematic, because 1) tsundere is originally a Japanese concept and thereby should be mainly fleshed out by people within Japanese culture, who are not yet generally resolved on a standard definition of tsundere (from the Japanese Wikipedia: 「現在ではインターネットスラングを起源とするとされ、そのため定義も多様で、確定していない。」 ["Since the origin [of the word] is internet slang, there are a variety of definitions, so [the meaning] is not firmly determined."]), and 2) the further back in anime history we go, the less anime was exported to non-Japanese audiences, which means that the selection of early characters that global fans have been exposed to is likely far more limited than the number of characters that long-time Japanese anime fans are familiar with. This means that the earliest character that an international fan can recall might not be as old the earliest character a Japanese fan could be aware of. So it seems ambitious/pretentious to assume that a character well-known internationally actually happens to be the earliest tsundere, since another character which never became known or popular outside of Japan in the 70s (for example) might be an earlier tsundere than any renowned character.

  • 1
    I would argue that the term can be retroactive - tsundere character attributes came from earlier series characters, who by today's standards would be tsundere. Would it not be correct to call a caveman's axe an axe? As for leaving this question to Japanese sources, many english-language resources refer to Japanese sources themselves, so I don't see why they are invalid - for example, the claim about Lum being the source of the tsundere trope is from an interview with Comiket organiser Koichi Ichikawa. If you wanted to be pedantic about this, many questions on this website should be removed. Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 6:34
  • @Toshinou Kyouko, I didn't have any concerns or issues with the question you asked, I simply wanted to offer a tempered answer. If there is a Comiket interview which refers to Lum, it should be cited instead of the English Wikipedia so that the reader can easily see the evidence for what you're explaining. If you have a citation for Sayaka Yumi being generally agreed upon by Japanese fans (and beyond), that would be great (the link provided didn't supply an argument as to how we could know whether she was the earliest or whether there could be another earlier character who qualifies).
    – seijitsu
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 6:52
  • It is not a matter of whom the fans recognize as being one or not. All of this can be objectively measured, and is not restricted to members or one subculture or the other. so 1) Tsundere as a personality can be objectively defined, 2) list of characters in anime/manga works can be objectively defined, and a personality analysis of them can be done. Aside from missing some earlier / obscure work, one can define early tsunderes. -1 Commented Jul 2, 2017 at 7:46

Pipiko as known as "Pipi" was the first Tsundere in an anime show called "Triton of the Sea (Umi no Toriton) in 1972" was published by Osamu Tezuka. She was found in Northern sea in a cool place. She wanted to become the queen of the Northen sea because she was the last mermaid (Actually she still a badass Tsundere mermaid! xD ).

She's not very polite to a heroic young boy named "Triton". Triton saved her from a sea monster, but suddenly, she hated him. Why, is because after he strong saved them, all the other seal friends cheered him to become the part of the Northen sea. Proteus told Pipi that she was the Triton of all the sea and she has to stick with Triton, but she doesn't care about becoming a Triton although she hated Triton for obeying his order. Pipi has a trick planned to get rid of him. She called Bach (His a friend of Pipi) and said that she will use an island illusion to trick Triton. She called Triton and together to find the island. Pipi's plan works tried to get rid of him.

Pipi was kidnapped by Minotus. Triton said to her we have to get out of this place, but she wasn't listening to him. Proteus told them that they have to get out of this place before Minotus exterminate us. Pipi and Triton moved to an Island full of Dolphins and yep, she such a hater of Triton. She declaims to escape from him to go back her home. Triton shouted at her not to go back there and it's dangerous!

Next day, She missed her family and all of her seal friends. She hated sleep under the palm trees and sand. Triton said "Is anything you wanted me to do?"

Pipi stubborn him for a while and show her anger expression. A second later, she answers, "I felt uncomfortable to sleep here and THERE'S NOTHING TO DO IN THIS PLACE, IT'S TOO BORING!" she let a hmpt sound turning her head and ignore him. Triton decides to make a house for her. He destroys all the palm trees with his deadly sword. Pipi screams and told him not to used his deadly weapons. "IS THIS WHAT YOU WANT FROM ME, HUH!!!"

Triton used another way to get rid of the palm trees out. He calls all his dolphins to pull the palm trees out.

A few minutes later, Pipi was abused by Iru and Karu. Fin protecting her from them to stop abusing her. Pipi threw a rock at them unfortunately, she was punished by Triton! She hated Triton and the other and manage to swim back to where she's belonging. Triton finds her although she's getting in deep trouble.

Once, He found her. She struggles with him and she told him she wanted to let go of him. Triton against the sea monster and stabbed in the stomach. Triton and Pipi now returned to the island where they finished building a house for her.

Next morning, Pipi call Triton and she wants to play a racing game. Triton was sick of her and said no thanks. She started to play rude thing to him.

Pipi: "Oh, because you're human, but you don't have a tail hahaha!"

Triton splashed on Pipi with an annoying anger expression. She shouts back at him and said "BAKA!!!!"

Lucas the white dolphin came to her and asked that Triton has gone to help the human to defeat Doriate. Pipi was happy for him to leave (She hated him 93%).

On episode 10 "Come back Pipi", Triton saw Pipi sitting on the rocky pool. She was annoyed him and pull out a raspberry at him. She was such a Tsundere to him and he disliked her. Pipi told all her information about her old friend from the Northern sea. Triton laughs at her with a grinning face. She then swims away from him not to talk to him anymore.

Pipi upset about him and along came a little yellow fish came by her. Pipi is only nice to the sea creature instead of a human. She helps the little fish to find her way back to her home. They play tag and having fun together and unfortunately, they were almost trapped by the Poseidon's guards. The guards didn't know they were at. Pipi and the little fish hide from them and didn't make it for her home. They go back to the island where Pipi new home was. She thanks the little fish and suddenly, Triton shows off his angry expression. He shouted at her. "WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN, PIPI!!!".

Pipi doesn't want to say about she's leaving the dolphins island and turned her head without looking at him.

Triton was even cross at her to waited for her answer. He walked up and shouted at her.
She told him she was trying to leave this place and go back where she belonging. He smack her and yells at her not to go back their even he told her 10000000000 times!!!! He asked her she has to stick with him and he even told her she's the Triton. Pipi don't want to be a stupity Triton.

She cries all day night in her hut. All of her fellows sang to her to cheer her up, but she still hated Triton. She wants him to leave this place.

Pipi found unusual huge pink shell ties from fin's back. Fin told her to be careful because this shell is belonging to Triton's family. She told her to listen to the sound effects of the shells. It was his family sounds. she thought for a moment. They told her the truth is she is the Triton. Pipi threw a shell toward far away from the island and she does not hesitate for that Triton.

After that, Triton came back from defeating Doriate. He told her she was a Triton. He told her that her family and mermaid groups were all dead by Poseidon and the Triton left was the onliest community who survived. She told Triton a liar and having enough of that talks. Triton let her hesitate about what she had done from the beginning past.

Almost to the last episode of Umi no Triton, She is now better o know everything about Triton's rules.

Well, that all I've got to tell you about Pipiko. She is the first Tsundere anime mermaid in the anime series.

Here's the picture of her enter image description here


The term is relatively new so it's hard to tell what character does or does not count.

However, the oldest character I know of that fits the definition, is 1813's Mr. Darcy from Pride and Prejudice. If you've read it then you very well know he fits the character type.


In deference to the previous poster, imo is more Tsun than Dere.

It legit sounds like she just hates him outright.

I usually mark the first actual Tsundere as Akane Tendo. Again, not created with the archetype in mind because it didn't exist yet.

But even in the first opening, Don't Make Me Wild Like You, she lays out both her grievances and her affections for him, and how she's just not ready to face up to all of it yet, so let's just try to be friends for now.

In the show, she is the stereotypical tsundere - teasing and tormenting Ranma, calling him a pervert and a crossdresser, forcing him into awkward situations - but at the same time, she's the first to show up with a kettle of hot water when he needs it, the first to carry him home when he can't walk, the first to get jealous when another female is even remotely friendly towards him.

The fact that he, himself is not much better than her in that regard only aggravates her only tsundere tendencies into such extreme levels that she literally sits on par with any modern tsundere who was intended to be one. In fact most of the typical tsundere qualities, if not all of them, are found in Akane Tendo - from the hair flips (when her was still long) - to the pouting - the teasing of the main character - needing to be saved by him but never immediately grateful -the fated romance between the two - even lesser used tropes like the tsundere being inexplicably attractive to every other male in the show except the main character (who still likes her anyways).

So, in summation, everyone has a different answer that fits their idealized concept of the tsundere concept, and no one else quite gets it right. The best way for you to determine the original tsundere is to watch classic anime yourself.

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