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Hidden Shoujo masterpieces? (To a males perspective, encouraged input from everyone though)

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#1
Feb 10, 7:35 PM

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So from my understanding Shoujo is aimed towards teenage girls, and being a male in my mid twenties, you can understand why I would avoid the genre. However after watching more anime I’ve found I actually have a fair amount of interest in more “feminine” themes like RomComs/drama.

While they aren’t Shoujo, they’re certainly a long shot from the types of anime that got me into anime in the first place. Some examples would be Toradora, your lie in April, a silent voice, your name, and violet evergarden.

So basically, Shoujo masterpieces you think would appeal to both genders? If you feel like explaining what/why makes it a masterpiece all the better, but please avoid or mark spoilers.

Naruto is life. Brushing it off as a “generic childish shounen” is the biggest injustice you could do to yourself.

“...Every single one of us goes through life depending on and bound by our individual knowledge and awareness. And we call it reality. However, both knowledge and awareness are equivocal. One's reality might be another's illusion. We all live inside our own fantasies, don't you think?”
-Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 42: The Secret of the Mangekyo (Naruto, #42)
 
#2
Feb 10, 7:37 PM

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I would say Hachimitsu to Clover is pretty much what you're looking for.

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#3
Feb 10, 7:39 PM

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The 2001 Fruits Basket anime is a goddamn masterpiece, and if anyone disagrees, I will fight them in the streets.

This glorious signature made by @Mayumi leads to my
superior reviews! Most Recent: Golden Boy/Gunsmith Cats!

I am the Arbiter of Absolute Truth, and here is my wisdom:

"Steins;Gate 0 is bad. Really bad. And stupid. And boring.
Violet Evergarden is great, and should have five seasons.
There is no 'Golden Age.' There is always top-shelf anime.
You should be watching Now and Then Here and There."
 
#4
Feb 10, 7:45 PM

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Thanks, both of those definitely sounded interesting I will have to start one of them tonight!
Naruto is life. Brushing it off as a “generic childish shounen” is the biggest injustice you could do to yourself.

“...Every single one of us goes through life depending on and bound by our individual knowledge and awareness. And we call it reality. However, both knowledge and awareness are equivocal. One's reality might be another's illusion. We all live inside our own fantasies, don't you think?”
-Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 42: The Secret of the Mangekyo (Naruto, #42)
 
#5
Feb 10, 7:45 PM

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Karekano but only the manga..................................
 
#6
Feb 10, 7:47 PM

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Ascendance of a Bookworm (its a novel altough it has a manga adaptation i would advise against it since its kinda meh).
It's the best isekai ever made. Its a isekai history that doesnt use a single isekai trope.
Its about a young woman obsessed with books dying and wishing to be reincarnated with the ability to live surrounded by books once again.
She is reborn but she turns into a fragile poor little girl in a world where books are luxury so yeah she is pretty screwed.
She is also pretty pathetic and barely competent.
There is massive character development, all characters have a role, the world is pretty interesting and the story flows at a nice pace.
Also Lutz with only 10 years is one of the most manliest characters ever created.
Modified by CordobezEverdeen, Feb 10, 7:56 PM
I never lie on the internet. What's the point of it...
the chinese noodles ad is an anime and avatar isn't!
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Pingu in the City in the rank 100. I hate this site.
 
#7
Feb 10, 7:50 PM

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Felix-san said:
Karekano but only the manga..................................

The anime is excellent up to about episode 20, and even then it's still wildly entertaining and funny up until the last episode.

This glorious signature made by @Mayumi leads to my
superior reviews! Most Recent: Golden Boy/Gunsmith Cats!

I am the Arbiter of Absolute Truth, and here is my wisdom:

"Steins;Gate 0 is bad. Really bad. And stupid. And boring.
Violet Evergarden is great, and should have five seasons.
There is no 'Golden Age.' There is always top-shelf anime.
You should be watching Now and Then Here and There."
 
#8
Feb 10, 7:57 PM

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Hokage_Jason said:
Some examples would be Toradora, your lie in April, a silent voice, your name, and violet evergarden.


uhh none of those are shoujo though?
 
#9
Feb 10, 8:00 PM

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Zelkiiro said:
Felix-san said:
Karekano but only the manga..................................

The anime is excellent up to about episode 20, and even then it's still wildly entertaining and funny up until the last episode.
Yes ... I would like to see a continuation, it has already been 20 since the anime, if another studio is interested and asked Tsuda I believe she would accept, although the work is too much to adapt in 25 episodes.
 
Feb 10, 8:00 PM

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greymood said:
Hokage_Jason said:
Some examples would be Toradora, your lie in April, a silent voice, your name, and violet evergarden.


uhh none of those are shoujo though?


"While they aren’t Shoujo, they’re certainly a long shot from the types of anime that got me into anime in the first place. Some examples would be Toradora, your lie in April, a silent voice, your name, and violet evergarden."

Re-read that sentance =p theyre examples of the more "feminine" (i dont agree with that label, hence the paretheses) non-shoujo animes that i like, to give an example to the people posting what kind if Shoujo's im talking about.

It's there for refrence.
Naruto is life. Brushing it off as a “generic childish shounen” is the biggest injustice you could do to yourself.

“...Every single one of us goes through life depending on and bound by our individual knowledge and awareness. And we call it reality. However, both knowledge and awareness are equivocal. One's reality might be another's illusion. We all live inside our own fantasies, don't you think?”
-Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 42: The Secret of the Mangekyo (Naruto, #42)
 
Feb 10, 8:05 PM

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From what you're asking I would suggest
mahoutsukai no yome
and
akagami no shirayukihime

Both shows have the romance aspect with some fantasy and adventure. Kinda like Violet Evergarden ish, but more romance
 
Feb 10, 8:06 PM

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If talk about shoujo anime, I will say Rose of Versailles.
Shoujo anime that tells about France revolution. It has really good story.

Other than that, I also love kamisama hajimemashita. Romcom shoujo that has interesting story.
 
Feb 10, 8:06 PM

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Also add Akatsuki no Yona to that list, less romance but shoujo.
 
Feb 10, 8:10 PM

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Hokage_Jason said:
greymood said:


uhh none of those are shoujo though?


"While they aren’t Shoujo, they’re certainly a long shot from the types of anime that got me into anime in the first place. Some examples would be Toradora, your lie in April, a silent voice, your name, and violet evergarden."

Re-read that sentance =p theyre examples of the more "feminine" (i dont agree with that label, hence the paretheses) non-shoujo animes that i like, to give an example to the people posting what kind if Shoujo's im talking about.

It's there for refrence.


So perhaps "shoujo" isn't really the right thing to express what you're looking for? Neither of those 5 feels shoujo-ish, if anything the tropes and the art styled are very different from how a shoujo usually is (i'm generalizing, i known, but can't be helped)

To me it just looks like you're looking for romcoms and slice of life instead of action and it's calling these type of shows "feminine" for some reason

Anyway. Utena. Utena is the best shoujo. Fuck off with Rose of Versailles i'm telling you
Modified by greymood, Feb 10, 8:14 PM
 
Feb 10, 8:11 PM

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Lind said:

Other than that, I also love kamisama hajimemashita. Romcom shoujo that has interesting story.


I second Kamisama hajimemashita, it has pretty lovable characters and not a lot of drama.
 
Feb 10, 8:17 PM

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Not exactly a "hidden masterpiece" but try Sailor Moon, it can be pretty enjoyable if you don't mind the 80s/90s monster of the week formula (with still an overarching story each season).
 
Feb 10, 8:17 PM

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Natsume Yuujinchou
X (aka X/1999)
Tokyo Babylon
Akatsuki no Yona
ここでおもしろいことは何もない
 
Feb 10, 8:21 PM

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greymood said:
Hokage_Jason said:


"While they aren’t Shoujo, they’re certainly a long shot from the types of anime that got me into anime in the first place. Some examples would be Toradora, your lie in April, a silent voice, your name, and violet evergarden."

Re-read that sentance =p theyre examples of the more "feminine" (i dont agree with that label, hence the paretheses) non-shoujo animes that i like, to give an example to the people posting what kind if Shoujo's im talking about.

It's there for refrence.


So perhaps "shoujo" isn't really the right thing to express what you're looking for? Neither of those 5 feels shoujo-ish, if anything the tropes and the art styled are very different from how a shoujo usually is (i'm generalizing, i known, but can't be helped)

To me it just looks like you're looking for romcoms and slice of life instead of action and it's calling these type of shows "feminine" for some reason

Anyway. Utena. Utena is the best shoujo. Fuck off with Rose of Versailles i'm telling you


I feel like you came into this conversation already disliking me for some reason, or you just didnt read what i wrote XC

I know those wern't shoujo, just an example of more "feminine" animes I like so that people know what im looking for in a shoujo.

Also, yes i am looking for shoujo, I'm not looking for just any generic romcom, I can sort through those myself. I'm looking for what people think are shows with a unisex appeal, but are labeled shoujo/jousei, because i don't want to sit through a bunch of stuff targeted at young girls to find a gem or two in all of it.

And as I said, I don't agree with labeling those examples as feminine, that's why I used parentheses, and then explained those parentheses were there to represent my disagreement. But lots of other people who only enjoy action/edgy stuff would.


edit: If any of that sounded hostile I didn't mean it in that manor, I just don't understand how we are miscommunicating so severly >.< and thank you for the recommendation.
Naruto is life. Brushing it off as a “generic childish shounen” is the biggest injustice you could do to yourself.

“...Every single one of us goes through life depending on and bound by our individual knowledge and awareness. And we call it reality. However, both knowledge and awareness are equivocal. One's reality might be another's illusion. We all live inside our own fantasies, don't you think?”
-Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 42: The Secret of the Mangekyo (Naruto, #42)
 
Feb 10, 8:26 PM
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Fruits Basket
Full Moon wo Sagashite
Hanasakeru Seishounen
Kareshi Kanojo no Jijou
Kobato
Kuragehime(Josei though)
Lovely★Complex
Shin Shirayuki-hime Densetsu Prétear
Sugar Sugar Rune
Versailles no Bara
 
Feb 10, 8:30 PM

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Shoujo isn't purely romance. The 90s especially had some more action-oriented shoujo, typically with plenty of romantic subplot, and these naturally had some cross-demographic appeal. You might enjoy some of them since you gave Inuyasha an 8, and that had a fair bit in common despite being shounen itself. A few examples:

Fushigi Yuugi
Magic Knight Rayearth*
The Vision of Escaflowne
(As you may notice, they were frequently isekai)

Similarly, the magical girl genre post-Sailor Moon tends to be fairly action-heavy, though it's also no longer purely shoujo. A few other examples that actually are shoujo would be:

Cardcaptor Sakura*
Futari wa Precure(Some of it's successors are good too, though the franchise is very hit-or-miss)
Shugo Chara

*Also, basically anything else by CLAMP is at least worth a try.


Like you, most of the romance anime I've seen isn't actually shoujo, but you could try:
Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun
Maria-sama ga Miteru

And I haven't gotten around to these yet, but I've heard they're good:
Fruits Basket
Ouran High School Host Club
Kareshi Kanojo no Jijou
 
Feb 10, 8:32 PM

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Princess jellyfish was pretty good. Yona just pissed me off to no end. Aishiteruze Baby was adorable. Akagami no Shirayuki-hime was also pretty cute. I really liked Banana Fish, but as a dude you probably wouldn't like it. Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun isn't really a shoujo but it had a bit of romance. Net-juu no Susume also isn't shoujo but it was a cute romance? Kind of.

Anything else I can think of has already been named.
 
Feb 10, 8:36 PM
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Nana is probably my favorite Shoujo of all time.
“What are you scared of? Nothing good has ever come from fear.” – Kawabuchi Sentarou
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Feb 10, 8:37 PM

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Phew. I’m so glad I already made a list of shows for this topic for my friend. Now, I assume you wanted more anime geared toward female audiences rather than entirely “shoujo” cause sometimes shoujo gets pretty annoying because it’s less mature and profound (I’m not saying some of them are just meek shows to pass time, just they don’t provoke lots of thought and is solely for wholesomeness). You could also try “josei” if you’re up for it.

Shoujo Anime Recommendations

Ao Haru Ride: the girl might get a little annoying cause of some of the reasons she does things but it is a cute romance
Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun: main girl is pretty great; it's like watching a kid figure out what love is
Akatsuki no Yona: one of the few reverse harems with a good female lead, I think
Sukitte Ii na yo.: quite cute, the events just pull on my heartstrings
Hotarubi no Mori e: okay, this is a story where it is mostly a flashback of the girl growing up. It's not she has personality but it's just a round about good movie to watch
Lovely★Complex: lol I know this looks like all romance but this girl has great personality. The voices may get a little annoying in sub though
NANA: two girls. One is annoying(my opinion) the other is badass (love her). May get a little dark and it's a mature genre
Akagami no Shirayuki-hime: not your typical "Snow White". Definitely has some character to her
Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun: not really your typical Shoujo but the female characters are hilarious and there's equal amount of eye candy too
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Feb 10, 8:55 PM

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Hokage_Jason said:


I feel like you came into this conversation already disliking me for some reason, or you just didnt read what i wrote XC

I know those wern't shoujo, just an example of more "feminine" animes I like so that people know what im looking for in a shoujo.

Also, yes i am looking for shoujo, I'm not looking for just any generic romcom, I can sort through those myself. I'm looking for what people think are shows with a unisex appeal, but are labeled shoujo/jousei, because i don't want to sit through a bunch of stuff targeted at young girls to find a gem or two in all of it.

And as I said, I don't agree with labeling those examples as feminine, that's why I used parentheses, and then explained those parentheses were there to represent my disagreement. But lots of other people who only enjoy action/edgy stuff would.


edit: If any of that sounded hostile I didn't mean it in that manor, I just don't understand how we are miscommunicating so severly >.< and thank you for the recommendation.


It ain't it. Just thought you were expressing yourself weirdly

Why don't you try the most popular stuff first? I like Ouran and Karekano best from those. There's the "acclaimed" shows like Rose of Versailles and Revolutionary Girl Utena, and perhaps Oniisama e, but i don't really think they're the best option for someone who isn't familiar with shoujo, mainly because they might feel a bit dated (and Utena is just very bizarre in general)

Natsume Yuujinchou is also really popular with both guys and girls. It's an episodic "ayakashi of the week" story

--

oh, if Josei is allowed, you should really try Rakugo
Modified by greymood, Feb 10, 8:59 PM
 
Feb 10, 8:57 PM
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CordobezEverdeen said:
Ascendance of a Bookworm (its a novel altough it has a manga adaptation i would advise against it since its kinda meh).
It's the best isekai ever made. Its a isekai history that doesnt use a single isekai trope.
Its about a young woman obsessed with books dying and wishing to be reincarnated with the ability to live surrounded by books once again.
She is reborn but she turns into a fragile poor little girl in a world where books are luxury so yeah she is pretty screwed.
She is also pretty pathetic and barely competent.
There is massive character development, all characters have a role, the world is pretty interesting and the story flows at a nice pace.
Also Lutz with only 10 years is one of the most manliest characters ever created.


This book sounds like my kind of thing. I like isekai/fantasy stories that are more serious (especially not like the current trend with isekai). It says the manga is finished but the novel isn't. I prefer to get into things that are already finished so I don't have to wait for sequels so would it be better to read the manga and then the novels when they come out (unless the end is fairly close)? Or was there a specific reason you say not to read the manga?

Hokage_Jason said:
So from my understanding Shoujo is aimed towards teenage girls, and being a male in my mid twenties, you can understand why I would avoid the genre. However after watching more anime I’ve found I actually have a fair amount of interest in more “feminine” themes like RomComs/drama.

While they aren’t Shoujo, they’re certainly a long shot from the types of anime that got me into anime in the first place. Some examples would be Toradora, your lie in April, a silent voice, your name, and violet evergarden.

So basically, Shoujo masterpieces you think would appeal to both genders? If you feel like explaining what/why makes it a masterpiece all the better, but please avoid or mark spoilers.



As for anime for this thread I'm basing this of as "not exactly shoujo but has more romcom/drama themes". My picks would be reLIFE, Wotakoi, Ore Monogatari, Lovely Complex, Tsurezure Children and Teasing Master Takagi-san. Some of those are actual shoujo. Honourable mentions which I'm not too sure if it's what you're looking for are: Kaguya-sama: Love is War, Spice and Wolf and Ancient Magus' Bride. There's a lot of variation between these types so I'll break it down a bit


reLIFE (https://myanimelist.net/anime/30015/) is about a NEET who takes part in a "rehab program" in which he repeats a year of high school. I highly recommend the manga since the anime cuts out a lot of very important scenes and also has better art. It's a very clean, coloured manga so it's easy to read as well and worth checking out (though the style changes quite a bit from the first couple chapters). I think the character development and the cast interaction makes it such an amazing show. It's a personal favourite of mine so I highly recommend it (read the manga its better than the show even tho the show is still good)

Wotakoi (https://myanimelist.net/anime/35968/) and Ore Monogatari (https://myanimelist.net/anime/28297/) would probably be the closest to what you're looking for from my list. They're both romance centric while not being the typical shoujo romance. Wotakoi is more gender neutral and has a lot of very otaku vibes (its the premise of the show after all) with very likeable characters and a more mature/serious character relationships. Another personal favourite. Ore Monogatari while I think is also quite gender neutral it's tagged as shoujo. It does have those shoujo elements and character types but I would say the main selling point is the mood and atmosphere between the cast. This one also has more drama than Wotakoi which is a lot more slice of life

Lovely Complex (https://myanimelist.net/anime/2034/) is one I read as a manga but it has an adaption so I'm gonna add it to this list. It's a shoujo romcom that I think has a more gender neutral appeal. With the manga, the only shoujo elements I could really recall is the art style though its been a while since I read it. This is again a story with great chemistry between the main couple and their charisma. However I found the rest of the supporting cast to be not be as strong as the main two unlike reLIFE with a very strong full cast. However, that's not a big deal for this show cos while not as strong the cast is still quite good. This is probably another show which may be closest to what you're looking for

Tsurezure Children (https://myanimelist.net/anime/34902/) and Teasing Master Takagi-san (https://myanimelist.net/anime/35860/) are both shounen, slice of life, romance. They're both a series of short stories of a gradually developing romance. Tsurezure Children is more romcom while Takagi-san is more slice of life. They're both very lighthearted and innocent so it's a bit different from the shows you listed

Kaguya-sama: Love is War (https://myanimelist.net/anime/37999) is still airing but it's a more similar type of rom-com to Toradora if I had to pick from your list. Though they're not exactly similar but I guess the characters have a similar vibe of trying to confess/get the other person to confess. It's more of a slice of life romcom but not much drama. From reading the manga, the story progresses a lot more into romance than what's currently shown in the show

Spice and Wolf (https://myanimelist.net/anime/2966/) is a more serious show with romance elements. Probably not what you're looking for in this thread so I won't expand on it too much but worth checking out for its serious tone

The Ancient Magus' Bride (https://myanimelist.net/anime/35062) has a similar vibe to Violet Evergarden in terms of its seriousness. It's again not as heavily romance/drama centric like what you're looking for but does have those elements especially with the protagonist as she discovers more about the world

When it comes to shoujo/romance I personally prefer it in manga form. There is one manga I wanna point out that I think you will definitely enjoy: Densha Otoko (https://myanimelist.net/manga/1158). The synopsis doesn't do it justice and honestly makes it more of manga you want to avoid so I suggest you don't read it and go in blind. It's not as cheesy or typical as the synopsis makes it sound so I urge you to give it a chance and read it blind if you decide to. It's about 2 people who meet by chance and while their next meeting was as strangers/platonic, it slowly develops into a romance.

 
Feb 10, 9:06 PM

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greymood said:
Hokage_Jason said:


I feel like you came into this conversation already disliking me for some reason, or you just didnt read what i wrote XC

I know those wern't shoujo, just an example of more "feminine" animes I like so that people know what im looking for in a shoujo.

Also, yes i am looking for shoujo, I'm not looking for just any generic romcom, I can sort through those myself. I'm looking for what people think are shows with a unisex appeal, but are labeled shoujo/jousei, because i don't want to sit through a bunch of stuff targeted at young girls to find a gem or two in all of it.

And as I said, I don't agree with labeling those examples as feminine, that's why I used parentheses, and then explained those parentheses were there to represent my disagreement. But lots of other people who only enjoy action/edgy stuff would.


edit: If any of that sounded hostile I didn't mean it in that manor, I just don't understand how we are miscommunicating so severly >.< and thank you for the recommendation.


It ain't it. Just thought you were expressing yourself weirdly

Why don't you try the most popular stuff first? I like Ouran and Karekano best from those. There's the "acclaimed" shows like Rose of Versailles and Revolutionary Girl Utena, and perhaps Oniisama e, but i don't really think they're the best option for someone who isn't familiar with shoujo, mainly because they might feel a bit dated (and Utena is just very bizarre in general)

Natsume Yuujinchou is also really popular with both guys and girls. It's an episodic "ayakashi of the week" story

--

oh, if Josei is allowed, you should really try Rakugo


Yeah I guess I should of included Josei I didn't know the difference (or even know what jousei was) prior to making this thread.

I read up on the summary and what not of Utena, It said "abuse, sexuality and incest" were all themes, how common are those in it?

I can't stand rape or incest, but if its a good show and those are only minor aspects I can bare through it.
Naruto is life. Brushing it off as a “generic childish shounen” is the biggest injustice you could do to yourself.

“...Every single one of us goes through life depending on and bound by our individual knowledge and awareness. And we call it reality. However, both knowledge and awareness are equivocal. One's reality might be another's illusion. We all live inside our own fantasies, don't you think?”
-Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 42: The Secret of the Mangekyo (Naruto, #42)
 
Feb 10, 9:14 PM

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CabooseGI said:
CordobezEverdeen said:
Ascendance of a Bookworm (its a novel altough it has a manga adaptation i would advise against it since its kinda meh).
It's the best isekai ever made. Its a isekai history that doesnt use a single isekai trope.
Its about a young woman obsessed with books dying and wishing to be reincarnated with the ability to live surrounded by books once again.
She is reborn but she turns into a fragile poor little girl in a world where books are luxury so yeah she is pretty screwed.
She is also pretty pathetic and barely competent.
There is massive character development, all characters have a role, the world is pretty interesting and the story flows at a nice pace.
Also Lutz with only 10 years is one of the most manliest characters ever created.


This book sounds like my kind of thing. I like isekai/fantasy stories that are more serious (especially not like the current trend with isekai). It says the manga is finished but the novel isn't. I prefer to get into things that are already finished so I don't have to wait for sequels so would it be better to read the manga and then the novels when they come out (unless the end is fairly close)? Or was there a specific reason you say not to read the manga?

Hokage_Jason said:
So from my understanding Shoujo is aimed towards teenage girls, and being a male in my mid twenties, you can understand why I would avoid the genre. However after watching more anime I’ve found I actually have a fair amount of interest in more “feminine” themes like RomComs/drama.

While they aren’t Shoujo, they’re certainly a long shot from the types of anime that got me into anime in the first place. Some examples would be Toradora, your lie in April, a silent voice, your name, and violet evergarden.

So basically, Shoujo masterpieces you think would appeal to both genders? If you feel like explaining what/why makes it a masterpiece all the better, but please avoid or mark spoilers.



As for anime for this thread I'm basing this of as "not exactly shoujo but has more romcom/drama themes". My picks would be reLIFE, Wotakoi, Ore Monogatari, Lovely Complex, Tsurezure Children and Teasing Master Takagi-san. Some of those are actual shoujo. Honourable mentions which I'm not too sure if it's what you're looking for are: Kaguya-sama: Love is War, Spice and Wolf and Ancient Magus' Bride. There's a lot of variation between these types so I'll break it down a bit


reLIFE (https://myanimelist.net/anime/30015/) is about a NEET who takes part in a "rehab program" in which he repeats a year of high school. I highly recommend the manga since the anime cuts out a lot of very important scenes and also has better art. It's a very clean, coloured manga so it's easy to read as well and worth checking out (though the style changes quite a bit from the first couple chapters). I think the character development and the cast interaction makes it such an amazing show. It's a personal favourite of mine so I highly recommend it (read the manga its better than the show even tho the show is still good)

Wotakoi (https://myanimelist.net/anime/35968/) and Ore Monogatari (https://myanimelist.net/anime/28297/) would probably be the closest to what you're looking for from my list. They're both romance centric while not being the typical shoujo romance. Wotakoi is more gender neutral and has a lot of very otaku vibes (its the premise of the show after all) with very likeable characters and a more mature/serious character relationships. Another personal favourite. Ore Monogatari while I think is also quite gender neutral it's tagged as shoujo. It does have those shoujo elements and character types but I would say the main selling point is the mood and atmosphere between the cast. This one also has more drama than Wotakoi which is a lot more slice of life

Lovely Complex (https://myanimelist.net/anime/2034/) is one I read as a manga but it has an adaption so I'm gonna add it to this list. It's a shoujo romcom that I think has a more gender neutral appeal. With the manga, the only shoujo elements I could really recall is the art style though its been a while since I read it. This is again a story with great chemistry between the main couple and their charisma. However I found the rest of the supporting cast to be not be as strong as the main two unlike reLIFE with a very strong full cast. However, that's not a big deal for this show cos while not as strong the cast is still quite good. This is probably another show which may be closest to what you're looking for

Tsurezure Children (https://myanimelist.net/anime/34902/) and Teasing Master Takagi-san (https://myanimelist.net/anime/35860/) are both shounen, slice of life, romance. They're both a series of short stories of a gradually developing romance. Tsurezure Children is more romcom while Takagi-san is more slice of life. They're both very lighthearted and innocent so it's a bit different from the shows you listed

Kaguya-sama: Love is War (https://myanimelist.net/anime/37999) is still airing but it's a more similar type of rom-com to Toradora if I had to pick from your list. Though they're not exactly similar but I guess the characters have a similar vibe of trying to confess/get the other person to confess. It's more of a slice of life romcom but not much drama. From reading the manga, the story progresses a lot more into romance than what's currently shown in the show

Spice and Wolf (https://myanimelist.net/anime/2966/) is a more serious show with romance elements. Probably not what you're looking for in this thread so I won't expand on it too much but worth checking out for its serious tone

The Ancient Magus' Bride (https://myanimelist.net/anime/35062) has a similar vibe to Violet Evergarden in terms of its seriousness. It's again not as heavily romance/drama centric like what you're looking for but does have those elements especially with the protagonist as she discovers more about the world

When it comes to shoujo/romance I personally prefer it in manga form. There is one manga I wanna point out that I think you will definitely enjoy: Densha Otoko (https://myanimelist.net/manga/1158). The synopsis doesn't do it justice and honestly makes it more of manga you want to avoid so I suggest you don't read it and go in blind. It's not as cheesy or typical as the synopsis makes it sound so I urge you to give it a chance and read it blind if you decide to. It's about 2 people who meet by chance and while their next meeting was as strangers/platonic, it slowly develops into a romance.



Thanks for the detail, much appreciated. And yeah I guess maybe I didn't properly express my original post because I also had some miscommunication with someone else.

I suppose It doesn't necessarily have to be jousei/shoujo, but there is emphasis on it. I know theres some shoujo/jousei titles I would enjoy, but I don't want to sort through a bunch to find them, given I'm not the target audience, I would probably not enjoy most. So I was looking for what other people consider to be "unisex appeal" hiding under one of those labels.

Also, it doesn't have to be strictly adventure/fantasy/romance etc., I enjoy serious tones too (sometimes). Spice and Wolf I have actually read a little bit about and it def seems like something I would like, it's on my "plan to watch" I think, or if not I forgot to put it there.

But yeah no, doesn't have to be jousei/shoujo exclusively, I appreciate any recommendation someone is willing to provide and will look into them all.
Naruto is life. Brushing it off as a “generic childish shounen” is the biggest injustice you could do to yourself.

“...Every single one of us goes through life depending on and bound by our individual knowledge and awareness. And we call it reality. However, both knowledge and awareness are equivocal. One's reality might be another's illusion. We all live inside our own fantasies, don't you think?”
-Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 42: The Secret of the Mangekyo (Naruto, #42)
 
Feb 10, 9:15 PM

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WTF?? I can't believe that nodody talked about https://myanimelist.net/anime/440/Shoujo_Kakumei_Utena that is a fking unique shoujo show. A classic. Another cute show is https://myanimelist.net/anime/6045/Kimi_ni_Todoke

I'm surprised by the amount of shounen they are throwing, lol, they are good shows at least tho.
 
Feb 10, 9:18 PM

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DaCraziGuy said:
WTF?? I can't believe that nodody talked about https://myanimelist.net/anime/440/Shoujo_Kakumei_Utena that is a fking unique shoujo show. A classic. I'm surprised by the amount of shounen they are throwing, lol, they are good shows at least tho.


Actually Greymood brought that one up, I read the summary and it talks about "abuse, sexuality, and incest".

Rape and incest are BIG NO for me, but I can bear through it if it's a very minor theme and the show is overall great.

So how prominent are those themes in utena?
Naruto is life. Brushing it off as a “generic childish shounen” is the biggest injustice you could do to yourself.

“...Every single one of us goes through life depending on and bound by our individual knowledge and awareness. And we call it reality. However, both knowledge and awareness are equivocal. One's reality might be another's illusion. We all live inside our own fantasies, don't you think?”
-Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 42: The Secret of the Mangekyo (Naruto, #42)
 
Feb 10, 9:20 PM

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"Tokimeki Tonight" is a great shoujo classic that everyone can enjoy.

If you enjoy the Anime, check out the Manga, because it ran for a much longer period of time.
 
Feb 10, 9:28 PM

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Hokage_Jason said:
DaCraziGuy said:
WTF?? I can't believe that nodody talked about https://myanimelist.net/anime/440/Shoujo_Kakumei_Utena that is a fking unique shoujo show. A classic. I'm surprised by the amount of shounen they are throwing, lol, they are good shows at least tho.


Actually Greymood brought that one up, I read the summary and it talks about "abuse, sexuality, and incest".

Rape and incest are BIG NO for me, but I can bear through it if it's a very minor theme and the show is overall great.

So how prominent are those themes in utena?

There is no actual rape, yes a bit of violence.

The incest part is kinda a spoiler but you already know a bit about that sooo, yeah, it has some but it's not something that should annoy you, it is done in a pretty "tasteful" way and it's not that explicit (some flashes and short scenes). It is one show that I recommend you to check anyway, it has a lot of themes that not many shows touch and the art is it's own thing too.

I had no problems with the themes of the shows, but some are pretty controversial. It is a show that I think one should watch at least once and only drop it as a last resort.

Also https://myanimelist.net/anime/6045/Kimi_ni_Todoke , I added this show later in a edit too, this one is a lot more lighthearted. This is a nice counter to the other one, lol.
 
Feb 10, 9:28 PM
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Sachyan said:
I would say Hachimitsu to Clover is pretty much what you're looking for.


I would second this, although I wouldn’t necessarily classify it as a shoujo due to its setting (college students/adults) and more mature topics. Honestly, I found the plot to be a bit slow at times but then again I have the attention span of a goldfish. As far as genuine characters go it’s probably the best example I’ve seen (the relationships on the other hand is a bit messy but at least it’s there for a purpose). There’s a decent cast of characters, but the show takes time to explore each of them in depth instead of relying on a singular romance by the main boy and girl while neglecting everyone else. It’s also made by the same author as 3-gatsu no lion, which is one of my all time favorites.

I would also add nagi-asu. I found it to be a bit cringey at times, and the main character was about as annoying as any 14 year old male protagonist, but I was still entranced by it. It has a lot of romantic drama and the love pentagon+ is probably overblown. But it can definitely set a mood, and my apush hw due tomorrow wasn’t going to stop me from staying up all night to finish it. It’s also probably a better transition to romance/drama based on the shows you watched.

Any of sugaru miaki’s novels are also good romance, though none of them have anime adaptations. Three days of happiness does have a manga though.
 
Feb 10, 9:33 PM

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I don't really think most shoujo even appeal to just girls really imo. Idk maybe because I love the romance genre a lot I find my self viewing a lot of Shoujo.

But if you're really interested in the RomCom/Drama side of things then:

Maid Sama
Ouran Host Club
Ore Monogatari (this is more wholesome than drama so idk)
Say I Love You
Orange (Other than the MC it's a good watch)
Bokura ga Ita (if you really want drama)

Ookami Shoujo and Kuro Ouji
[These 2 are more or less a combination of cute/wholesome and drama]
Itazura na Kiss
His and Her Circumstances (great rom/com apart from ending)


I think it was obviously implied, but these are all shoujo romances, bolded ones are ones that have more drama in them


And if you're looking for more "feminine" style romcom/dramas but aren't specifically labeled as shoujo, then:

Tamako Love Story
Hanasaku Iroha
Golden Time
Plastic Memories
Lover's Suicide Through Rakugo (this one is more drama though and more Joesei than Shoujo)
A Lull in the Sea
Iroduku
White Album 1 & 2 (both have a lot of drama as well)
Modified by Short_Circut, Feb 10, 9:41 PM
'On-Hold' is another way for a completionist to say 'Dropped'

 
Feb 10, 9:35 PM

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Hokage_Jason said:

I read up on the summary and what not of Utena, It said "abuse, sexuality and incest" were all themes, how common are those in it?

I can't stand rape or incest, but if its a good show and those are only minor aspects I can bare through it.


Utena is... a very hard thing to summarize. I don't really known what to say for people who haven't watched it, but it's, to put it on a VERY simplist way, a story about teenagers locked away on their past, unable to move forward, that are seeking a miracle to drive them free from their current state. It's trully bizarre and integrates symbolism deeply in it's storytelling, especially on the second and third cour. The first 12 episodes are pretty normal by it's standarts, however

Sex is a very important thing, thematically speaking, and it's mostly used by the characters as a power tool, especially one certain guy who loves to ride a red car. And yes, there's incest, and it's a very abusive relationship, and that's far from being the only abusive relationship on the story, but it's a crucial thing for the show to work

The other siblings relationship are also borderline incest, but not actual incest. It's because "purity" is a very prominent theme on the story, and a childhood-sibling relationship is the closest thing you get when you think about it (according to the creator)

DaCraziGuy said:

There is no actual rape, yes a bit of violence.


uhm, there's that one event which definetely wasn't consensual. But it's not exactly what people think about when they talk about rape scenes, so...


Modified by greymood, Feb 10, 9:41 PM
 
Feb 10, 9:44 PM
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Not exactly shoujo (it's categorized as josei), but Sakamichi no Apollon (Kids on the Slope) was so damn good. I'm a musician and I like jazz, though, so that probably played quite a big role in it.


"Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road."
― Jack Kerouac

 
Feb 10, 10:01 PM
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This thread kind of made me realize that despite being a girl, I really don't watch nor actually like that many shoujo anime lmfao.

But here are some from my list anyway, because I think they deserve a special mention (since apparently they're the only shoujo anime that I pretty much rated highly):

Natsume Yuujinchou. Absolutely beautiful. This is not romance, it's slice of life and drama and focuses more on the heartwarming and calming setting, as well as Natsume's relationship with his peers, his struggles to keep his ability to see youkai a secret for fear of being ostracized, and coming to terms with his strange power that he slowly views as something that's important to him despite hating it at first.

Gakuen Babysitters. Actually really good, quite a heartwarming story about a high school boy and his toddler brother who lost their parents in a plane crash. It's not super serious though, but the way the MC treats his brother (and the other babies that he has to take care of, as well as their guardians) as well as the slice of life type of pacing makes it really good.

Banana Fish. Yes, this is tagged as shoujo. Is it really shoujo? I suppose in some ways it is, but I think it's definitely a unique anime in this genre. And I certainly think it will appeal to both genders, because there's a little something for everyone in this anime. I think that it's an absolute masterpiece and well worth your time. Word of advice: DON'T read the manga before you finish watching the anime. If you're not satisfied with the anime ending then by all means do so, but if you want to keep the anime as its own canon just don't touch the manga. This was the mistake I made and... yeah. I wish I could turn back time and force myself not to read the manga before the anime ended, tbh.
 
Feb 10, 10:07 PM
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gwendal738 said:
Natsume Yuujinchou. Absolutely beautiful. This is not romance, it's slice of life and drama and focuses more on the heartwarming and calming setting, as well as Natsume's relationship with his peers, his struggles to keep his ability to see youkai a secret for fear of being ostracized, and coming to terms with his strange power that he slowly views as something that's important to him despite hating it at first.

I never even realized this was categorized as shoujo until just now. This is a perfect example of why I hate those tags in general. We need to have genres like action, thriller, slice of life, etc., but do away with any tags that basically mean "boy" or "girl" because the only purpose they serve is in detracting a potential audience from ever watching them.


"Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road."
― Jack Kerouac

 
Feb 10, 10:12 PM

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Greyleaf said:
gwendal738 said:
Natsume Yuujinchou. Absolutely beautiful. This is not romance, it's slice of life and drama and focuses more on the heartwarming and calming setting, as well as Natsume's relationship with his peers, his struggles to keep his ability to see youkai a secret for fear of being ostracized, and coming to terms with his strange power that he slowly views as something that's important to him despite hating it at first.

I never even realized this was categorized as shoujo until just now. This is a perfect example of why I hate those tags in general. We need to have genres like action, thriller, slice of life, etc., but do away with any tags that basically mean "boy" or "girl" because the only purpose they serve is in detracting a potential audience from ever watching them.

I’m pretty sure some of those tags are based on which serialization magazine/publisher the manga comes from. Which is why sometimes a slice of life about girls going through their school lives is categorized as “shounen” rather than “shoujo”.
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Feb 10, 10:17 PM
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Greyleaf said:
gwendal738 said:
Natsume Yuujinchou. Absolutely beautiful. This is not romance, it's slice of life and drama and focuses more on the heartwarming and calming setting, as well as Natsume's relationship with his peers, his struggles to keep his ability to see youkai a secret for fear of being ostracized, and coming to terms with his strange power that he slowly views as something that's important to him despite hating it at first.

I never even realized this was categorized as shoujo until just now. This is a perfect example of why I hate those tags in general. We need to have genres like action, thriller, slice of life, etc., but do away with any tags that basically mean "boy" or "girl" because the only purpose they serve is in detracting a potential audience from ever watching them.


Yes, I definitely agree. But I think those kinds of "genres" stem from Japanese culture itself. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm still given the impression that the Japanese have "set" expectations of what girls and guys like, e.g. girls like sweets and boys who do are "girly", "girly" pizza flavors (shrimp, cheese, etc.) vs "boyish" pizza flavors (mostly meat), etc. So this kind of thinking certainly bleeds into what they think a certain gender would prefer in their anime (i.e. girls are nice and sweet and soft, therefore they prefer anime that are more slow-paced, romance-laced, and pastel color palettes vs. boys who want action, fast-paced things with darker color palettes).

It's all stemming from personal observation of various Japanese media though (not just anime but also their dramas/movies, music, and also Japanese 'influencers' I follow on youtube) so I could be wrong, but it's a solid theory, I think.

But yes, I gotta agree with you. As someone who doesn't believe that things should be limited to certain genders (if you're a guy and you wanna wear makeup and heels, go right ahead and work it!), I really do despise the "shoujo" and "shounen" (and other similar genres like josei, seinen) labels a lot. Just let people like what they like instead of attributing things to their gender and forcing them to limit themselves, dammit.

Hana_Poko said:

I’m pretty sure some of those tags are based on which serialization magazine/publisher the manga comes from. Which is why sometimes a slice of life about girls going through their school lives is categorized as “shounen” rather than “shoujo”.


This is also true. Though the fact that there are even magazines "segregated" (I can't really find a better word) by gender like that just because a certain anime/manga contains more girls or more boys or themes that would "appeal" more to a certain gender is, I think, problematic in itself. I'll reiterate it again - like what you like, who cares if it's "for girls" or "for guys"! :D
Modified by gwendal738, Feb 10, 10:21 PM
 
Feb 10, 10:17 PM
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Hana_Poko said:
Greyleaf said:

I never even realized this was categorized as shoujo until just now. This is a perfect example of why I hate those tags in general. We need to have genres like action, thriller, slice of life, etc., but do away with any tags that basically mean "boy" or "girl" because the only purpose they serve is in detracting a potential audience from ever watching them.

I’m pretty sure some of those tags are based on which serialization magazine/publisher the manga comes from. Which is why sometimes a slice of life about girls going through their school lives is categorized as “shounen” rather than “shoujo”.

Yeah, tbh I just don't even pay attention to those kinds of tags anymore. I'll just let the premise itself determine whether or not it's something I want to watch.


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― Jack Kerouac

 
Feb 10, 10:18 PM

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Soredemo Sekai wa Utsukushii is pretty good tho.
 
Feb 10, 10:21 PM
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Hokage_Jason said:




Answer to your question is none

Because all shoujo just like reverse harems/Yaoi its really sexist
All male chacters are seen as sex objects with no personality
And promotes the ideas that men as seen only as objects
to its creepy fanbase
 
Feb 10, 10:35 PM

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I would say X and Jyu Oh Sei...

both had potential to be hidden shoujo masterpieces. The former if they didn't fuck the ending up, or lack one I suppose, and the latter same thing, but rushed the fucv out if it. Although Jyu Oh Sei had an incredible amount of content for only 11 episodes so props.

Both were entertaining, and halfway through X I really thought it was going to be a masterpiece.
 
Feb 10, 10:38 PM

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As a teenage girl myself I'm not a big fan of shoujo anime myself but I love Natsume Yuujinchou and also I really liked Kamisama Hajimemashita
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Feb 10, 10:38 PM

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To touch on the past couple comments (and I could be way wrong here, I cannot confirm anything I’m about to say as a fact, this is a LOT of assumption)

I believe shounen, Shoujo, sienien and Jousei are all different publishers (as someone else said) each with different target audiences based on the Japanese cultures stereotypes (as a different person stated).

So shounen will buy/publish things they think teenage boys in japan are into, Shoujo teenage girls, jousei adult females, and senien adult males.

And really I don’t think there is anything wrong with that, it’s not like they’re negative stereotypes. Speaking on an average/generalized basis females are more apt to get into romantic themes and males into action.

It’s just to try and hit their target audience with more success, it’s not like they themselves are saying “guys shouldn’t read/watch Shoujo, and girls shouldn’t read/watch shounen.”

Like I say though that’s just generalized. People are unique and when you start generalizing/grouping people you are bound to exclude many.

So I think it makes sense, it’s a logical way for authors to hit the right target audiences, and people like me who don’t necessarily find romance themes to be girly, or action themes to be manly, can freely explore any regardless of publisher. Plus I have those publishers to use as guidelines, if I want something like naruto I know I’ll have better luck looking at shounens, while if I’m in the mood for some sort of coming of age/maturing story I’m better looking into jousei/senien.

My only issue with them is that they can be misleading. If you’re going to generalize things at least make sure it’s done correctly XD
Naruto is life. Brushing it off as a “generic childish shounen” is the biggest injustice you could do to yourself.

“...Every single one of us goes through life depending on and bound by our individual knowledge and awareness. And we call it reality. However, both knowledge and awareness are equivocal. One's reality might be another's illusion. We all live inside our own fantasies, don't you think?”
-Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 42: The Secret of the Mangekyo (Naruto, #42)
 
Feb 10, 10:42 PM

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Nerdanimefan1992 said:
Hokage_Jason said:




Answer to your question is none

Because all shoujo just like reverse harems/Yaoi its really sexist
All male chacters are seen as sex objects with no personality
And promotes the ideas that men as seen only as objects
to its creepy fanbase


Yeah I saw your response the first two times you posted it, I just strongly disagree and don’t think it’s worth arguing with you over lol.

Sure some are sexist, that goes for any genre, but to label them all at once is ignorant =P

Plus given you have deleted an reposted that several times now you’re obviously just trying to start shit XD go troll a toxic thread not this one :3
Naruto is life. Brushing it off as a “generic childish shounen” is the biggest injustice you could do to yourself.

“...Every single one of us goes through life depending on and bound by our individual knowledge and awareness. And we call it reality. However, both knowledge and awareness are equivocal. One's reality might be another's illusion. We all live inside our own fantasies, don't you think?”
-Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 42: The Secret of the Mangekyo (Naruto, #42)
 
Feb 10, 10:46 PM
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I would say Yona of the Dawn has a lot of appeal for both genders. My brothers, my sister, and I all really liked it, despite having pretty diverse interests. It's primarily a romance, but it's also so much more. It's high fantasy, with real stakes and very compelling character development, and the animation and soundtrack are fantastic. Give it one episode and I'm 99% sure you'll enjoy it.
 
Feb 10, 11:15 PM

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From your examples OP, I feel like you'd enjoy Seto no Hanayome or Karin. They're not shoujo but the romcom is gr8.

Two charming little shoujo titles I want to throw out are Kaleido Star and Puchi Puri Yuushi. They don't get a lot of attention, but I consider them quiet gems among the genre. Just all around a joy to watch and sweetly optimistic. Worthy in their own right.

On the romance side, Kodomo no Omocha is a classic. You have a bright and energetic lead, her foil being this cold, mopey troublemaker. It starts off pretty light but gets more serious as you go along. You'll find all the shoujo tropes here but done exceptionally well.

greymood said:
Anyway. Utena. Utena is the best shoujo. Fuck off with Rose of Versailles i'm telling you

Seconding Utena and I raise this thread: Princess Tutu, for more bizarre and brilliant storytelling.
 
Feb 10, 11:40 PM
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If you don't mind watching old anime, I would suggest Ace so nerae. It's the first shoujo anime in sports, I believe.
 
Feb 10, 11:53 PM

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BTW, OP...

CabooseGI said:
When it comes to shoujo/romance I personally prefer it in manga form. There is one manga I wanna point out that I think you will definitely enjoy: Densha Otoko (https://myanimelist.net/manga/1158). The synopsis doesn't do it justice and honestly makes it more of manga you want to avoid so I suggest you don't read it and go in blind. It's not as cheesy or typical as the synopsis makes it sound so I urge you to give it a chance and read it blind if you decide to. It's about 2 people who meet by chance and while their next meeting was as strangers/platonic, it slowly develops into a romance.


If you're ever interested in checking out Train Man (i.e. Densha Otoko), there's no anime of this, but there is a live-action version, and apparently it's also good.
 
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