High School AU
|Trope · Genre|
|Related:||Alternate Universe, Mundane AU, All Human AU, De-Aging, College AU|
|Tropes · Slash Tropes · Tropes by Fandom|
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High school AUs are a popular AU subgenre in which characters are shown in high school together. They are often done with characters who canonically meet later in life, altering or entirely overwriting their original backstories. However, this genre also exists in fandoms with teen characters, such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which is canonically set in high school; as in other high school AUs, vampires and/or other non-school-age characters will get rewritten as human high school students (aka an All Human AU). Similarly, in Harry Potter fandom No-Magic AUs sometimes replace Hogwarts with a regular high school and turn wizards into ordinary teenagers.
High school AU stories can be parodies, but are often dramatic. Elementary school and kindergarten AUs are less popular, but occur on occasion as well; these more youthful variants tend to be comedic, frequently skirting the border of crackfic.
Sometimes characters are de-aged in some way and have to repeat the high school experience (like Jack O'Neill's canonical clone in SG-1). In other stories, the characters simply meet earlier than they did in canon. Some high school AUs make radical changes to the canon universe, making characters who in canon are pirates or aliens or ancient vampires into normal human students in a modern high school setting.
High school AUs are common in animanga fandoms, both in English-language fanfic and Japanese doujinshi, with characters who never attended standard school in canon. The frequency might be because high school stories are a popular genre in shounen and shoujo manga, or because the heroes of most shounen and shoujo stories are teenagers already, or simply because it's amusing to draw characters in Japanese high school uniforms. Several series even have (arguably) canonical high school AUs penned by the authors, such as Minekura Kazuya's Executive Committee, a lightweight AU of her much darker semi-BL Wild Adapter, or Gintama's Class 3-Z Ginpachi-sensei parodies.
- Bandom: We're All Okay by rivers_bend. Frank/Gerard.
- Inception: Simple Math by foxxcub. Arthur/Eames fic in which they pretend to be a couple.
- Inception: Let Not My Love Be Called Idolatry by toomuchplor. Arthur/Eames.
- Merlin: 40 Days and 40 Fights by dayari. Merlin/Arthur.
- Merlin: Coming Up by xthursdaynextx. Merlin/Arthur.
- Hanson and Eminem: Embers by Ahestele, in which Taylor is a figure skater and Marshall plays hockey.