The Happily Ever After of Shoujo Love Triangles… Then What?

Oh wait! This isn't a shoujo. Oh wait! This is a Marcoss shipping blog.

Oh wait! This isn't a Macross post! It's not even shoujo!

Shoujo is my favorite genre. While I may not be as widely read or have watched as much – unlike most shoujo lovers and I have the tendency to redirect love to other genres for the sake of a good story, shoujo will always be the genre closest to my heart. I’m gonna be the first to admit it, with sub-genres like mahou shoujo, yaoi, and others, the genre is too broad.  But if there’s one thing I enjoy about shoujo the most, it has to be the love triangles.

Love triangles always make an interesting story. Let’s forget the fact that the female lead is too average (or less than average) and the male leads are riddled with their own imperfections. Shoujo lovers live for the high-strung drama, doki-doki moments and finally, the lead’s final decision as to who she wants to end up with, we love it because it’s more developed than the fairytales that we all grew up and fell in love with it.

The Fateful Meeting

It is a tried-and-tested formula. A girl of average circumstances (or less) attracts the attention of two guys who are almost the opposite of each other. After a weird turn of events that will lead to love for the female lead, these two guys engage in silent gentleman’s agreement battle to fight for the one they love.

While the premise is repetitive, it still comes out as “something different” because of the circumstances. Fruits Basket has the two male leads Jyuunishi curse, Skip Beat! has the backdrop of show business, and Densha Otoko has the otaku-vs.-suave-guy conflict. No matter the circumstances, the formula – and various reversal of variables – of a love triangle makes for awesome plots and can be applied to any backdrop and genre.

The two male leads would meet the girl under different circumstances from friendly encounters (Mizuki and Nakatsu in Hana Kimi j-drama) to What-a-jerk-off! (Kyoko and Ren in Skip Beat!) to childhood friends (Yuuki and Zero in Vampire Knight). Hardly prelude to love material but the fateful meeting of characters is only a jump point of things to come.

The Build-Up

This is what makes shoujo a shoujo. The encounters of one character with the boys leading to revelations that contribute or hinder the two of them from getting together. The heart of shoujo comes in the missed opportunities, misunderstandings, too much thinking and not enough talking, and high dorama when the two rivals come face-to-face with one another. I will not be giving anything beyond the generic examples in the previous statement because those are the common denominators of the genre where the only difference would be the characters. But this is the part of the story that can drag on for years for a manga reader and would cover episodes 2 til the second to the last for an anime viewer – character and relationship building.

And yeah, as sad as it sounds, milestones for a reader/viewer comes with two characters finally being able to hold hands and the almost-first kiss -_- because it’s such a big step. The personal thrill comes from the unusual chaste non-courtship between the two and the lead.

The Highly Intense BGM-filled Conclusion

After all the struggles and the conflict, the main character closes the books with one and seals the deal with the other. The question as to how we react to it is dependent on which guy we actually prefer in the end.

There have been many fans who have flailed a series they have been following forever because the guy of their choice didn’t get picked. I know several people who called Fruits Basket (manga) crap because Tohru chose to be with Kyo instead of Yuki, while another set of several adored it for the exact same reason. Similarly in anime, a lot hated the fact that Shinichi chose the basketball girl over the chicken girl in True Tears (anime), while I liked it for the same reason. (Note: Yes, I consider TT to be a shoujo rather than harem because there was no harem to begin with considering they changed everything from the game, keeping only the title.)

The only exception that I can think about is in Shinishi Doumei Cross (which I never read but heard a lot of when the now-disbanded – maybe – AGRR extensively discussed shoujo) where the female lead couldn’t decided between the twin brothers who want her so she just chose to marry both of them. Geh! Is that even legal?

The Boring Aftermath

After one of the male leads emerges victorious for the battle for the female lead’s heart, they turn into the most boring couple in the world. All the personal demons of each character have been let out – family problems, personal hang-ups, traumas, even the tragic way so-and-so character’s puppy died – have been let out and accepted. While during its run where the characters struggle with each other, after it’s all said and done, there’s pretty much nothing left afterwards. No opportunity for any sequel or OVA because everything else come out as… weh.

Unlike other genres where a new stronger opponent can pop up at anytime and the story continues, shoujo doesn’t allow legroom for this. Rarely has any shoujo series featured the aftermath of the two characters being together… because there’s pretty much nothing else after. Anything and everything that comes up is a non-issue because their love has gone through THIS much for anything to come in between them. After the magnificent ship has sailed, no one can get on anymore.

Introducing a new third party to tear apart the happy couple is not even a conflict worth mentioning because neither girl nor guy would even consider. In Lovely Complex (anime), where the story didn’t even start out as a love triangle, the only thing to challenge Koizumi and Otani’s relationship was the other short dude who fell in love with Koizumi. But it became more of a matter of Otani’s own insecurity because Koizumi was working at the same place as the other guy. Koizumi never even considered the other guy as anything more than a friend.

Really now. If there is an introduction to a new third party in the final pairing in shoujo, it can never have too much of an impact to sway the heart of either party. If there is, I haven’t seen/read it. But even if there is, it always come out as a silly misunderstanding and only strengthen a relationship on the trust factor.

There are other series where more conflict arises, but this is more of reaffirming the pairing’s devotion to each other. While there is the the-story-continues in Hana Yori Dango (j-drama) after Tsukasa and Makino got together, the shoujo formula no longer applies. Sure, there was the amnesia thing, but what happened after Tsukasa recovered his memories? He went straight back to Makino. Even Tsukasa’s primary rival for Makino’s heart on the first season Rui, who could have easily jumped in and woo Makino to his side, ended up becoming their ally and the conflict revolved more around Tsukasa’s mother being the hindrance for their happily ever after.

But the most painful example of the crap, boring aftermath would have been Densha Otoko‘s (j-drama) Let’s-exchange-necklaces thing. I was like, “Gimme a frickin’ break!” I yawned through the last episode of them being too shy around each other to reaffirm their feelings for one another. Why I still watched it was because I wanted to know what happened to the other otakus in the Aladdin Channel and even that disappointed me. While special covered a new conflict in the story (which I don’t think was ever in the manga), it was more of protecting Saori’s identity as Densha Otoko’s lady love.

Basically, for any more extensions on love triangles, the words ‘filler’ and ‘fan fodder’ come into mind.

The Exceptions

Certainly there are exceptions. But from the point of view of a love triangle, there is only exception I can think of… Fushigi Yuugi (anime) where a third party, Hotohori, gave up on Miaka almost too easily. Too early into the series to establish a proper love triangle, giving the inevitable to Miaka and Tamahome. C’mon, this pairing had defied laws of physics and reality that Tamahome reincarnated into the human world to be with Miaka. While OVA2 introduced Mio, she was hardly a threat to the pair. OVAs that followed Taka and Miaka after the series ended no longer became about their relationship but as to the fate of the world inside the book.

Another exception is where the third point of the triangle barely registers. Bokura ga Ita (anime) is generally about Nana and Yano’s trials and tribulations after they become a couple. But before they got together, Yano’s best friend, Take, slithers around Nana. Take is one of those characters who borders on potential third party that you don’t know if he’s a supportive best friend or an opportunist who will jump at the first chance he gets if Yano screws up with Nana. But he barely even registered on Nana’s radar. Likewise in Skip Beat! (manga) where Kyoko’s own hatred for Shou and her oblivion to Ren’s feelings for her made her aware of their existences but their feelings never caught her attention.

The only magnificent shift in the love triangle variables I’ve seen was in Princess Tutu (anime) where the story came from one prince, two princesses to shift to one princess, two princes. But the conclusion as to who Ahiru ended up with did not come until the very end where she went back to being a duck when Mytho fell in love with the other princess. Her knight stayed with her forever though… which would make a really weird hentai if the story continued on. C’mon, this show with a cat who wants to marry everyone as a ballet teacher.

Letting Great Things End

For me, the build-up is great and the conclusions are good for my fangirl heart. Of course, my liking for the series will always be dependent on which point of the love triangle I favored. But after that, that’s pretty much it. As much as I want to see more and more of the pairing, I really don’t know what else they can offer. So after the drama is over and done with, let’s let a series end with the greatness of the ending it gave, knowing they will sit side by side together to old age surrounded by their grandchildren. Delving into what happens next will just reduce me to tears of boredom.

For argument’s sake, if ever a new conflict arises that would sway the heart of either character’s heart to cause them to drift apart permanently, wouldn’t that have just thrown the years of your fandom for the series out the window and cancelled out everything that the two characters went through? Seeing that happen will just make you demand your money back for all the videos, mangas and other merchandise you bought. But for the reader/viewer, that is only supposed to be a temporary setback that can prove how strong the relationship would be. They’ll be back in no time.

I tried to find an appropriate shoujo way of explaining it, but can’t. I could use Sailormoon, but I can’t because I never got past Sailor Venus arc to do the description justice. So I’ll be using another genre with a generic plot to express it: If a character dies in an awesome epic death, a series becomes legendary. But because of excessive public outcry for more, the creators revive the story and our hero comes back to life. Do we really want to see him bumbling around and going through the same struggles all over again like he did before he got his legendary status?

Notes:

I just realized while writing this how little shoujo I’ve covered in my life. If you have any more titles to contribute for expansion, by all means… As I mentioned at the beginning of my post, I am not as proficient with shoujo like some bloggers I can name. I think ghostlightning asked me to guest because usagijen turned him down and I’m the only other alternative. -_-”’ I’m not even on the frickin’ blogroll ;A; hazy and kanzeon were notably absent on our nightout.

As my own personal disclaimer, I mentioned if the series I am talking about is the anime, j-drama or the manga. Just because I watched the anime or j-drama doesn’t necessarily mean I read the manga.

Also, I cannot count harem anime. However hard I try, I can’t complete a harem series.

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25 Responses to The Happily Ever After of Shoujo Love Triangles… Then What?

  1. lolikitsune says:

    I never thought I’d see myself say this, but… tl;dr.

  2. lelangir says:

    You actually mentioned a few series I’ve seen, Boku ga Ita, Fushigi Yuugi, Lovely Complex (the first half…), Fruits Basket, True Tears: I guess, as you said, there is a “shoujo-formula”. That’s pretty interesting, since you can apply this same analysis to shounen or mecha or whatever genre.

    One thing I don’t like about anime (or at least shoujo anime) is that it never really “gets to the good part”. The FB anime never got to Tohru living with ____ in his apartment? – or so I’ve read that’s where the manga goes. I guess I should watch Itakiss, since I’m into really long stories that cover a large portion of one’s life.

    Have you seen Kashimashi? It’s….maybe I should rewatch it. It’s a “typical” love triangle thing between three girls (one used to be a boy).

    I should rewatch Kare Kano, though it doesn’t specifically deal with a love trianle…

  3. ghostlightning says:

    @lelangir

    Kare Kano! The second half was a big mess, but I ended up reading the manga… which I think really supports your notion of

    >>One thing I don’t like about anime (or at least shoujo anime) is that it never really “gets to the good part”

    I watched Special A, and it’s kind of the same I think. The succeeding arcs where the ‘staying together’ happens doesn’t get shown.

    @ biankita

    >>This is what makes shoujo a shoujo. The encounters of one character with the boys leading to revelations that contribute or hinder the two of them from getting together. The heart of shoujo comes in the missed opportunities, misunderstandings, too much thinking and not enough talking, and high dorama when the two rivals come face-to-face with one another.

    This refers to the build-up part. The anime usually invests in this at the expense of other things. Obviously my favorite triangle is the SDF Macross MinmeixHikaruxMisa. What made the show still compelling to me despite the relative lack of dorama between the three is the space opera elements.

    As for Macross Frontier, the lack of conclusion really upset many viewers. I chose to view MF less of a love triangle and more of a space opera, but the investment in the inter-relationship drama seems huge and thus merits the criticism. I’m quite happy with the end though, even though my ship failed (AGAIN).

    >>As much as I want to see more and more of the pairing, I really don’t know what else they can offer.

    This is critical, IMO. Given the imbalance in the investment, it’s really hard to expect the ‘life together’ of the winning ship to be as interesting. At this point in my life I’m more interested to watch how ongoing relationships are portrayed (how they work, how they stay fresh)… but I somehow feel that the myth of ‘happily ever after’ is better kept a myth…

    It’s the carrot that drives us all forward.

  4. mechafetish says:

    Perhaps you should take a look at the manga “Suzuka”. Its quite good and deals with “on again, off again” relationships that are more true to life than the ones you mentioned. “I’s” is also another very good option.

    In both examples, you have both characters breaking up due to strains in their relationships despite very dramatic (and well-executed) scenes where they get together. They explore other options and eventually… well, I wont spoil it. Other weighty concepts such as teenage pregnancy are also tackled.

    Lastly, NANA, based on your analysis, also breaks the mold of “traditional” shoujo manga.

    These are all very excellent. Check them out!

    Cheers!

  5. animekritik says:

    @biankita

    Check out Marmalade Boy. Plenty of love triangles, often getting decided relatively quickly, but producing unstable relationships that yield new love triangles, etc..

  6. bluemist says:

    Sorry, tl;dr a bit because I am at work.

    I don’t see a conclusion or ending as important as the events that happened towards it. For shoujo (or any anime for that matter), it’s the journey that counts for me, and it balances my bias on whoever the girl chooses in the love triangle setup.

    In Fruits Basket, I was leaning more on Kyo because Tohru relates to him more often. Yuki always feels prince-ish, therefore distant to down-to-earth Tohru. Only watched the anime though so dunno what’s next for the manga.

    Skip Beat isn’t even a contest for most so far because Shou is still mostly portrayed as an ass. I feel this manga isn’t even at its halfway point because heck the love triangle has just started. So despite my Kyoko-Ren lovin I’m (afraid I’m) still open for a Shou.

    Kimikiss is supposedly a harem too but the female viewpoint gives it a shoujo feel. Kimikiss has nice love polygons, and my picks NEVER WON. But this show seems to leave a sense of openness, meaning the story can still go on and the couples are still in for a rocky future.

    As for recommendations, Full Moon wo Sagashite is the best unloved mahou shoujo anime with an unusual love triangle. Marmalade Boy is classic shoujo similar to Hana Yori Dango. And… watch NANA. All girls need NANA! (these are long animes though, but that’s what I like about shoujo anime, journey is long and sweet).

    Lol my tl;dr comment. I have a lot of stuff to say about shoujo but my blog (aside from being dead) seemed too harem/bishoujo. Seems time to show my non-girl fangirl self eh?

  7. lelangir says:

    @bluemist: if I were a fangirl (I undoubtedly have some in me) I would really really really want sequels of a lot of series. But not sequels that are “right after”…like for Kimikiss, I’d want a sequel that depicts the gang several years in the future, in college, like you said. I can say the same for Boku ga Ita: if they had a sequel about the deterioration of Yanno/???’s relationship [does long distance fail?] I would watch it in a heart beat.

  8. schneider says:

    No mention of H&C yet? I am saddened.

    >Kimikiss is supposedly a harem too but the female viewpoint gives it a shoujo feel. Kimikiss has nice love polygons, and my picks NEVER WON.

    OUCH.

    Kimikiss is a nice study of a galge adaptation too. Yay for splitting the main into two for better love polygon handling.

  9. biankita says:

    @lelangir
    you’re right. the “shoujo formula” is applicable to other genres, especially if that genre has a love story angle. of course, for other genres, this is more like a side-story (i.e. to appeal to the girl audience). in shoujo, this is the story. and as i said, the “never getting to the good part” is a thing that excites and frustrates the fangirls. imagine that dragging on for years.

    @ghostlightning
    i think SA failed as an anime. the problem is that it’s not very clear about which direction they wanted to go. are they going for romance or the friendship and this affected the flow of the story. it seems to want to go to one direction then halfway pull out to focus on another. the manga did not have the whole disbanding of SA thing hanging over their heads so the story is more solidly focused on the love stories of the SA members.

    as for MF, i told you before, if i wanted to watch a love triangle, i will watch a shoujo. i watched MF because i wanted to see space battles… the triangle was a bonus. the people i know who were dissatisfied with MF because of the open ending to the triangle were 2 types:
    1> they just want ranka to win;
    2> shoujo lovers who wants to see a love triangle conclusion like they were used to.

    i think that in the end, most shoujos end up like any other couple. after all the kyaa~! and the doki-doki moments, the couple always slip into a comfortable place where routine becomes the norm. they lose an audience because it no longer makes them think “if only things like these happen to me…”

    @mechafetish
    i always found shows where the characters get together and everything happens afterwards too painful to watch. the kind of frustration that says “if you’re going to let that get in the way, why don’t you just break up for good!” it’s weird because it’s pretty much the same things that we see before two characters get together. i guess it’s frustrating because it becomes more emo than “ah… a personal demon to consider.”

    @bluemist
    in shoujo, i definitely think build-up > conclusion. and even when the conclusion comes, it will still divide the fanbase depending on which party they’re rooting for.

    re: furuba – i think the problem there is that it was never established that tohru had any feelings for yuki in the first place. it was yuki that was after tohru. but yeah… you have a great point about tohru relating better with kyo because they seem to be alone in life.

    re: skip beat – i am actually getting the feeling that before the manga ends, shou is going to show a side that will soften the audience’s attitude towards him

    re: kimikiss – i started it and finished it. for some reason, i just scrolled through the middle because it came out so dragging and boring and the frogs creeped me out.

    @lelangir
    a bokura ga ita sequel better have a nice boat ending. i read several chapters where the anime left off where nana visited yano. but i dropped it where it was too emo. watching it was so painful especially when they dragged out three flashback-filled episodes just for them to decide if they should break up or not.

    @schneider
    i always saw H&C more of slice-of-life than shoujo. the fact that hagu didn’t end either guy threw me off because of her final choice of the person she wants to spend the rest of her life with.

    kimikiss was kinda weh for me, but the polygons they established was interesting. if they made the show more interesting (for me), it would been great.

    @everyone
    i’ll make a note of your recommendations. thanks!

  10. Baka-Raptor says:

    Have you seen Ayashi no Ceres? It was one of the first 10 anime I watched and probably remains my favorite shoujo (although there is a lot of action). Scarlet is still one of my favorite intro songs.

  11. I second Mechafetish’s vote for “I’s” This would be the perfect season to read it too. That manga made my christmas last year.

    Would Oran Highschool Host club count as shojo? Other than that show, I haven’t been able to finish anything with a reverse harem….

    Unless it’s an action show, otherwise I prefer as little males as possible.

  12. omisyth says:

    Problem with letting great things end is that it seems to trivialise the experiences the characters have gone through.

    Either that or because it’s anime and people make money from fangirls/boys and character shippings they keep throwing crap and conflict into the mix.

    But hey, don’t ask me I hate shoujo, bores the hell out of me unless it’s full of comedy.

    Also, biankita on We Remember Love?! MIND = BLOWN.

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  14. Ryan A says:

    The question as to how we react to it is dependent on which guy we actually prefer in the end.

    Nonnnn! lol, well from a guy’s perspective, I like to agree with the outcome, but I am more intrigued by center of it all (the main heroine). These girls tend to have something very attractive, and I can sympathize with the male characters. There is just something about shoujo girls I adore… Haruhi (Ouran), Tohru, etc.

    Also, I enjoy seeing awesome some male characters can be … say Tamaki from Ouran. They sway from a$$es to respectable, and when I can admire or respect a male character in shoujo, it grows on me …. beautiful relationships are BEAUTIFUL!

    After one of the male leads emerges victorious for the battle for the female lead’s heart, they turn into the most boring couple in the world.

    You know, in RL, the blossoming of love+attraction is usually the most exciting part for both sexes … keeping a relationship interesting [in RL] is more work, but well worth it … just more difficult to do well in fiction.

    It’s quite astonishing how much the shoujo situation appeals in RL as well, though it just doesn’t appear as much… ^^ cheers

  15. ETERNAL says:

    I honestly believe that the build-up is the most important thing in romance, shoujo included – the conclusion should be the conclusion, no questions asked. Of course there are exceptions, but when I think about some of my favourite shoujo (Honey and Clover especially), I can’t bring myself to request more because I already know that the best has passed. Sure, they could animate a few eps on the relationships that actually worked out, but what point would it be? It’s the emotions that the characters go through to get there that make the show interesting, not what they do AFTER they get there.

    And on another note, great article. As a fan of all things romance (and sometimes shoujo, even though I’m a guy), I enjoy reading the thoughts of fellow fans.

  16. gloval says:

    heard of yoakena/crescent love? (the anime, i mean, because it’s originally an H-game.) it could be another exception to your basic shoujo format. the love confession happened halfway through the series and they had to struggle from being separated because their love is crucial for solving the underlying conflict.

    hm, maybe i made it sound better, this anime having been criticized for crappy animation and storytelling, but for me it was cheezefest galore and i enjoyed it while it lasted. also there is one under-appreciated contribution this anime has given to entertainment at large: it predicted that indiana jones will become interested with alien artifacts and he will have a family.

  17. adaywithoutme says:

    If you haven’t seen it, you need to sit down and watch Revolutionary Girl Utena. Not only is it a great show itself, but there are a bunch of tropes and animation techniques that come from it that you’ll see scattered across the genre.

    Hakushaku to Yousei is great as incredibly disposable shoujo – its a lot of fun, extremely lightweight, and you’ll probably forget it within eight months, but you’ll like it when you watch it.

    I really liked Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne – I feel like not many people have seen it, especially as we get further removed from its original airdate. I feel like KKJ had more heart than a lot of mahou shoujo shows did, as the heroine comes from a broken home. It does, admittedly, have a little too much filler, though – you might want to stick to the manga.

    Oh, and if you feel like going full-on melodrama, Oniisama e… is always a great choice.

  18. usagijen says:

    “I think ghostlightning asked me to guest because usagijen turned him down…”

    wait what?! But ghostlightning never even asked me D:

    And I do think you’re more adept in analyzing shoujo because I spent more time mindlessly fangirling over them than actually thinking why I fangirl over them in the first place .___.

    I feel the same way as you with KimiKiss and True Tears… was rooting for Asuka, Yuumi and Noe, and they all lost in love ;___;

    and what the– did someone just recommend Marmalade Boy?! Ok, I know I’ve become jaded about romance stories like ItaKiss, but considering how you and I have the same sentiments over that… I highly suggest you be wary of Marmalade Boy.

    Read Basara if you have the chance, it doesn’t have the love triangles that would be relevant to your ‘study’, but it’s totally EPIC (literally and figuratively) and worth recommending to just about anyone.

  19. TheBigN says:

    “where the female lead couldn’t decided between the twin brothers who want her so she just chose to marry both of them. Geh! Is that even legal?”

    Doesn’t matter if it’s legal. It’s awesome. 😛

    You could apply the same principles here to shounen love triangles at well, as I think it sort of speaks to all of us in a way. What makes triangles good to me is if they equally flesh out the rivals in love in order to make the choice seem justified. Sure, the bias will be there if the person you want to win doesn’t, but it’s at least respectable. :3

  20. biankita says:

    @Baka-Raptor
    your recommendations have been taken note of.

    @MechaMarshmellow
    well, i like my hodgepodge of anime. i just prefer shoujo, but that doesn’t mean i will not watch anything else from other genres. but yeah… if i watch a shonen, i watch it for the action. if i watch mecha, i watch it for the hardware. if i watch yaoi, it’s for the random molestation. but… yeah, throwing in a little shoujo makes it more enjoyable for me.

    @omisyth
    Also, biankita on We Remember Love?! MIND = BLOWN.
    believe me, you’re not the only one.
    fandom is such a beautiful thing.

    @Ryan A
    while i ship a certain ouran pairing, i like how they made the anime to be more centered on the friendships and just how strong it was rather than a lame attempt to make a shoujo romance. while the ending gave an “implied” ending, i really enjoyed how the focus was never initially about that. i’m not sure if this was a decision of production or because there wasn’t enough manga material to make one.
    i also usually agree with the outcome of most shoujos. but that’s only because i usually like the guy the girl ends up with. i think that compared to RL, once the most fascinating parts of shoujo (the build-up) leads to the inevitable ending, hard reality sets in and it gets boring. i remember the coined term “temporary suspension of disbelief” where people who love watching shoujo get excited because no matter how relateable, they’re not usually the scenarios that we encounter in life. we think, “aw… now if that only happened to me.” but after, it becomes less interesting because it’s just too much of a reflection of our own relationships. ~that’s what i think anyway.

    @ETERNAL
    thank you for the compliment.
    and i agree… the build-up is the actual story. i always saw the conclusion as… a conclusion. just to finish the story before it becomes too repetitive, etc.

    @gloval
    actually, i have very little appreciation for shows that are based on eroges or h-games. it may pique my interest at first, but i eventually drop them because the storylines tend to go beyond my boundaries of “temporary suspension of disbelief”.

    @adaywithoutme
    i’ll take note of the titles that you mentioned. the only thing i watch (currently) in your recommendations was hakushaku to yousei – which i think is nice for fangirling purposes but kinda messed up the storyline, if there is even any.

    @usagijen
    really? he never asked you? i assumed because you were the one who told me about it XD that kinda boosts my ego if it’s true then XD no not really… i’m lying. >_>
    analysis??? me??? i can be a mindless fangirl if the situation calls for it. but i prefer the 3-dimensional-ness of characters in anime, which is why i still prefer it over other western animation. it’s not something i can love love love unconditionally.

    @TheBigN
    i always saw as love triangles in other genres to be an attempt:
    1. to make the lead character into a more rounded person (not just about the battle) of sorts; and
    2. to entice female audiences to get into the series.
    not that i find it bad. but personally, i don’t really pay much attention to those because i watch shonen for the action – like how i mentioned that i watch mecha for the battles, etc. i consider the “love triangles” in other genres to be an added bonus for me.

  21. gloval says:

    so i guess story/plausibility >>> cheezefest for you. which made me remember the please teacher/twins series (some fans insist on “onegai” even when the original title is clearly in english). the titular teacher of the first series, having explored other worlds, indeed have wise thoughts on love which i thought i’d only hear in theology/philosophy classes, but i liked the second series better. i liked it enough to complete it. i think this was because, comparing the premises, “high school guy finds himself living with two girls of his past one of whom may be a cousin” is more plausible than “high school guy with plot-convenient mental illness finds himself married to his teacher who is an alien explorer in disguise.” not to mention i dig childhood sweetheart stories haha. SPOILER! in fact, what got me to watch crescent love was when i stumbled upon the episode that revealed that the lead couple have already met in the past.

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