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Post Reply Why do people hate harem anime so much?
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Posted 4/16/14
The problem with the bland character and plot argument is that almost all originate from Visual Novel's (dating sims), if not H-games. This overuse is actually just the product of similar games that coincide so closely, that they become cliche. So, these were basically made in a way that, you finish one with all it's routes and such, and then go and grab the next one for new characters and a new basis. Almost never are the main characters actually characterized; they are meant to represent the player, and who they are. I'm surprised in actual harem anime they go ahead and give all the characters life and some charisma, so I appreciate it when these shows come out. Just think of it as a dating sim, but instead, you're watching it (and obviously, you cannot achieve every route in a series that follows a linear timeline, but if that's what the sim intended as the main heroine, then they should probably be the main route in the series.) So consider harem anime as a vitalization of dating sims, and should be simply enjoyed as a leisure activity, rather than an object of critique.
xxJing 
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Posted 4/16/14

zProjectNutz wrote:

The problem with the bland character and plot argument is that almost all originate from Visual Novel's (dating sims), if not H-games. This overuse is actually just the product of similar games that coincide so closely, that they become cliche. So, these were basically made in a way that, you finish one with all it's routes and such, and then go and grab the next one for new characters and a new basis. Almost never are the main characters actually characterized; they are meant to represent the player, and who they are. I'm surprised in actual harem anime they go ahead and give all the characters life and some charisma, so I appreciate it when these shows come out. Just think of it as a dating sim, but instead, you're watching it (and obviously, you cannot achieve every route in a series that follows a linear timeline, but if that's what the sim intended as the main heroine, then they should probably be the main route in the series.) So consider harem anime as a vitalization of dating sims, and should be simply enjoyed as a leisure activity, rather than an object of critique.


Funnily enough, I find that harem animes actually based on dating sims tend to have more unique main characters than harem animes based on light novels. Utawareru Mono, Tears to Tiara, Kanon, Air, Clannad, Angel Beats, Little Busters, We without Wings, all those had fairly interesting main characters. The problem I see with bland main characters generally is that dating sim animes create a character to replace 'you' in the anime, light novel authors simply write what they themselves as a typical unpopular nerd would like to experience in whatever setting.
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Posted 4/16/14
Well .... harems .... eh ... it's a weird case for me. Most cases when i see harem, i usually think it's bad just because i just found it unrealistic and 4 or 5 girls falling in love with one guy while the MC don't notice is just plain weird, and if the plot isn't going anywhere i can usually stomach it for about 5 or 6 episodes before i have to stop watching. Exceptions are harems where the story isn't really focused on the harem element and on some other things instead like Index

When Infinite Stratos first came out, i enjoyed it mainly because they are still introducing new characters over the first season and actually had decent bit of action so i guess story is sort of progressing in a sense, when IS 2 appeared however, my brain almost died following it. Probably because like others said there is almost no sense of plot progressing, it's just 6 girls fighting over the neutron star ichika. He didn't notice any affection from girls. Other one that are similar would be eh ... Highschool DxD, it is not as bad as IS because at least they still have some story arcs and villains to defeat, and at least the fanservice make up for it.

Current anime i am watching is Nisekoi. Even that one, i avoided it like a plague until recently my sister told me that it is not that bad. Sure Raku got 4 girls liking him right now but at least he know that 2 of the girls like him, and the story is slowly progressing since he is sort of actively trying to find who have the key to his locket, and it have more comedy things such as their expression and situations that they found themselves in. Even in the romance department, 2 girls is trying to deny their feeling, 1 girl is too shy to do anything, only 1 is aggressive and declared her intention unlike IS 2 which i summarize as 6 girls fighting over MC over and over.

TLDR : How i react to the harem mostly depend on which part the anime focus on, story progression and characters. Hate harems where characters are blatantly pursuing the MC and MC is too dense to know it. ( IS, and Kampfer ). Like harems if the focus is not on the harem / romance element or at least it have some kind of plot that they are working toward.
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Posted 4/16/14
Dudes are jealous and girls think its unfathomable. Hah just kidding, but it could be an underlying issue?
Vyrkin 
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Posted 4/16/14
I dislike them because for the most part you have one annoyingly stereotypical male character surrounded by multiple underdeveloped female characters. I much prefer straight up romances to harems or love triangles (hate love triangles they are always pointlessly dramatic) because it spends each episode developing both characters throughout the series so that in the end they are both well understood and seem to have an actual reason as to why they like each other, as opposed to the whole "what is this pain in my chest".
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Posted 4/16/14 , edited 4/16/14
I hear a lot of talk about the MCs but which Harem anime would you say had good character development for the female characters. I've kind of felt that usually the only significant development is going from not liking the the MC to falling in love with him.
Obviously its subjective, but what female characters would you say had interesting character development?
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Posted 4/16/14 , edited 6/23/15
Nagisa from Clannad. Easily.
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Posted 4/16/14
Why was it interesting?
Sogno- 
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Posted 4/16/14 , edited 6/23/15
because there's a good portion of anime watchers who are FEMALE who generally don't want to see a bunch of girls fighting over one guy??

reverse harems, on the other hand... are just as dumb.
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Posted 4/16/14
I'm really indifferent, If I can find something in it that keeps me entertained I'm good.

The only one I can recall really hating was Muv Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse. I didn't know the source material when I started watching and the first 2-3 episodes made it look like this classic hyper violent, action anime they don't seem to make enough of anymore and then suddenly.......herem......they switched genres on me......
xxJing 
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Posted 4/16/14

Deuswyvern wrote:

I hear a lot of talk about the MCs but which Harem anime would you say had good character development for the female characters. I've kind of felt that usually the only significant development is going from not liking the the MC to falling in love with him.
Obviously its subjective, but what female characters would you say had interesting character development?


You may laugh when I say this but Infinite Stratos. In Infinite Stratos you might as well think of the main character as like a big vibrator or something the girls are fighting over. The main character is a thing, he is not a real person. On the other hand the female characters actually do get some character development. It's an odd concept that doesn't seem to work very well, but I find it entertaining.

Other harem animes with female character development, Haganai, Oregairu (SNAFU), Baka to Test to Shokanjuu, Sora no Otoshimono. There are plenty. Anything by Key or by Leaf.
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Posted 4/16/14
Here is a question: Why do people want to watch a harem centered series in the first place? I ended up reading or watching a few because of being oblivious (and having a hard time stopping something I've started), so no I haven't sampled many of them... but the reasons I can think of for watching them tend to be unappealing.

"Wish fulfillment" needs to be done without hurting someone. This is very tricky as works of fiction meant as mere amusement can unintentionally enforce (or reinforce) certain messages. Harem settings tend to enforce/reinforce a lot of troubling relationship issues, ones that have plagued humanity for millennia. I mean, if you think polygamy is a great thing, okay but I have to disagree with you; we aren't going to be able to come to more of a common understanding than that. Pseudo-polygamy isn't much better, where the main character is basically "dating" his entire harem, or at least stringing some along while actually dating others. This is that thing that makes Archie creepy when you think about it too long (and why at least some of the time there is an attempt at breaking out of that template).

If you can have a "chaste" harem it can be enjoyable, but so far those tend to still add a lot of sexual fanservice, which is a disservice for those that:

* Don't Find illustrations sexually titillating
* Do find illustrations sexually titillating, but are not seeking such a thing.

Now... for all those people that most of what I said doesn't apply to: I am not telling you what you have to enjoy or how you need to live. I am just explaining why I (and those with similar tastes and views) wouldn't enjoy the typical "harem" set-up. If the "harem" was seen as "the problem" and the series solved it with suitors and the main character realizing that this isn't what they want, or even if it is that it isn't working, then people like me could enjoy it.

The comparison to series you're not supposed to "think" about falls a bit flat; "mindless American Action movies" usually make sure the people dying are either a little bad, or only there to die to make sure you have someone you know is the bad guy so the hero can heroically kill them. Sometimes they even go to great lengths so that no one is seriously harmed, or only the bad guy and because of his own evil. Harems just can't manage that because "the harem" itself either is or at least resembles something pretty harmful in real life.
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Posted 4/16/14 , edited 6/23/15
The reason I don't like harems is because the girls all have big boobs and are super annoying... though I do like reverse harems cause I am a girl and gotta love the guys XD haha!~ Though the main girl characters in reverse harems are super annoying as well and they are pretty much a welcome mat waiting to be walked on but I try to get over that for the awesome guy characters.
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Posted 4/16/14
Because peeps fall for the trap, and get squicked out.
Posted 4/16/14
Harems in themselves are not bad, it's just harems TEND to be bad, just like how not ALL homeless people smell like cow pee but most of them just happen to smell like cow pee
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