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Post Reply romance that isn't ecchi/harem?
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19 / F / Connecticut
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Posted 3/8/15
romance is my absolute favorite genre, but almost everything tagged as romance when it comes to anime is some gross ecchi harem bullshit and i'm so tired of that same recycled harem plot line that reappears every season.. where the dark haired lonely highschool boy finds out he has some special ability and is suddenly surrounded by beautiful women who have both the personality of stale bread AND giant tiddies.. it's just eughhghg

even if it's something where the characters like each other and it never goes anywhere (kind of like in fairy tail lmao) what are some good romance stories? i really like ones kind of like kimi ni todoke but i'm very into fantasy stuff too, like maybe inuyasha? idk but all i know is that i need a break from the constant panty shots

thank you in advance, i just don't want to comb through the tagged/romance section of mal for hours to find something to watch

(this is the right place to post this.. right?)
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Posted 3/8/15 , edited 3/8/15
I would point you to Ai Yori Aoshi which is a romance that PRETENDS to be a harem show. But when you look at the actual show it is a romance between Aoi and Kaoru and the comedy element is nobody else except the Guardian/Caretaker of Aoi (Miyabi) and Tina Foster recognize that. I enjoyed the series so much I paid what little bit of coin I could spare to get the DVDs. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ai_Yori_Aoshi
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36 / M / Pittsburgh
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Posted 3/8/15
"The Wallflower" is a comedy with some romance elements. That's currently free streaming on Hulu though.

"My Little Monster" is one from this site that's pretty good.
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Posted 3/8/15
Oh yeah . . I forgot to mention: Say I Love You as a very good romance anime as well.
http://www.crunchyroll.com/say-i-love-you
Mei Tachibana from the show.
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21 / M / My Couch
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Posted 3/8/15
Kaichou wa Maid-Sama was a pretty sweet romance story. Maybe a bit cliche, but all romances are to some extent.

Another great one was Ano Natsu de Matteru, which can be found here on CR.
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26 / M / Heuco Mundo
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Posted 3/8/15
One-Week friends
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27 / M / USA
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Posted 3/8/15 , edited 3/8/15
Toradora (obvious), and Aoi Hana off the top of my head.

I really liked Aoi Hana because it was about characters growing up as people as they went through their relationships, instead of the story going "These people are perfect for each other and will live happily ever after forever the end."
Posted 3/8/15 , edited 3/8/15
Aside from the glorious Kimi ni Todoke, there's Arakawa under the bridge for a combo of heavy comedy and romance. Kobato has romance in it, but it also has a sort of "story" going on. There's also Golden Time I guess (though, i'm not really a fan of that). Romeo x Juliet might be worth a try. It has a fantastic setting, but the characters aren't amazingly compelling - just pretty good. I think the romance and the setting more than make up for it though.

Two romance shows that are quite similar to each other are My Little Monster and Say "I Love You". The former has heavy elements of comedy and the latter has heavy elements of drama. Both are quite good though - but many compare them and prefer one over the other.

From the more "josei-y" side of things, there's stuff like Natsuyuki Rendezvous and Nodame Cantabile - both of which are quite good.

~EDIT~ And, of course, there's the recently aired Blue Spring Ride which is a very good show that goes back to the roots of shoujo romance anime (in my opinion).

Those are my favorite romances without harem elements off the top of my head.
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Posted 3/8/15
Kimi ni Todoke is one of my favorite anime, unfortunately there aren't many similar anime that come close to it.

Say I Love you is probably the closest, and is also really good. The plots are really similar.

I just finished watching Kotoura-San. It's about a girl with psychic abilities moving to a new school because she was bullied at her old one, and meets Manabe-kun. They join an esp club and she begins making friends. Kotoura and Manabe are pretty much a couple from the first episode, and Manabe is a pervert, but just does it to tease Kotoura, there is no harem or ecchi or nudity, the pervert scenes are done really well and are extremely funny because of the reaction from kotoura.

Lovely Complex is pretty popular among the romance anime crowd. I however, didn't really like it. The main male character was really annoying, and I kept hoping the female lead would wake up and realize she was too good for him.

Toradora is good as well, but only if you can stomach tsundere to the nth degree. Taiga, the loli with a bad attitude, is almost as tsun as Louise from Familiar of Zero. No harem or ecchi though.

Maid Sama is really good, I'd say on par with Kimi ni Todoke, but also not much romance to be honest, just a lot of blushing and flirting and feelings that aren't understood by anyone. The Manga has a lot more romance.

Ao Haru Ride somewhat similar to Kimi ni Todoke, but again one of those anime where the characters like each other but nothing happens. I read the manga afterwords, and it just pissed me off how the story progresses.

Special A - I really liked this one. The top two students are always competing against each other because the 2nd place female lead hates losing to the 1st place male lead. Male lead likes the female lead but the female lead is oblivious.

Spice and Wolf - Wolf/Spirit/God decides to travel with a merchant. It's a really good show, and there is some romance, but it isn't a focal point.

Kamaisama Kiss - I really like this one. Homeless high school girl becomes a land god and moves into a shrine where her familiar is a handsome fox spirit. She falls for him instantly and tries to get him to notice her. Really good show.

Inu x Boku SS- Girl moves into an apartment building for half human-half yokai, and is given a body guard, who is a 9 tailed fox spirit. He's obsessed with her, and she likes him. Really good show, don't read the manga, though.

There's a ton more that I can list, but this is a good start I think.

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38 / M / Kansas
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Posted 3/8/15
EF: A Tale of Memories.
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35 / M / UK
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Posted 3/8/15
This is an easy one, I can almost reuse a post I made the other day...

5 Centimeters Per Second - a boy travels to see a girl from his old school who has had to move away with her parents.
Crest of the Stars / Banner of the Stars - a boy who has been adopted into an alien empire makes a striking impression on a female military officer.
From up on Poppy Hill - a studio Ghibli film about two high school students from Yokohama (set in 1963).
Ocean Waves / Umi Ga Kikoeru - another studio Ghibli film, this time about how the life of a male student from a sleepy town in Shikoku is affected by the arrival of a new female student from Tokyo.
Ah!! My Goddess - romantic comedy about a college student who accidentally wishes for a goddess to stay with him.
Kimagure Orange Road - classic '80s romantic comedy about an indecisive teenage boy and his relationship with two female school friends (the main plot twist being that the guy and his sisters have paranormal powers and they can't let anyone find out). It is a little bitter at times as one girl declares her feelings immediately and publicly while the other doesn't want to hurt her friend.
Macross - Several series of sci-fi starting with "Super Dimensional Fortress Macross" in the early '80s (every series from this franchise has a "love triangle" element though "Macross 7" waters it down as it was mainly aimed at a younger audience).
His and Her Circumstances / Kare Kano - another comedy; on entering high school the "perfect" student is knocked from her number 1 spot by a male classmate.
Rumbling Hearts - an unexpected incident changes the lives of four high school friends.
mnmike 
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Posted 3/8/15
A lot of good ones mentioned so far, but if I can add a couple that haven't been:

Kimikiss: Pure Rouge. A little sappy, but surprisingly good rom-com; there are three mains (2 guys and a girl), all of whom find themselves in the middle of a different love triangles.

Otome Youkai Zakuro: Mix of comedy and drama, focuses on three "inter-species" couples.

Golden Time: Sometimes great, sometimes flawed, but one of the best looks at a real relationship between two maturing people in love.

Aishiteruze Baby: Teenagers acting like teenagers, kids acting like kids, but it's never annoying, and the love story is really quite good.

Myself; Yourself: More about friendship than romance, though the romance is pretty well done; starts comedic, ends dramatic.

Amagami SS: My favorite guilty pleasure; a series of 4 episode arcs (6 if you watch the second season) that are just straight-up, feel good romance stories.
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38 / M / Kansas
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Posted 3/8/15

MidoriNoTora wrote:

This is an easy one, I can almost reuse a post I made the other day...

Kimagure Orange Road - classic '80s romantic comedy about an indecisive teenage boy and his relationship with two female school friends (the main plot twist being that the guy and his sisters have paranormal powers and they can't let anyone find out). It is a little bitter at times as one girl declares her feelings immediately and publicly while the other doesn't want to hurt her friend.

I have been wanting to watch this series for ages. Is this series available in any legitimate and affordable fashion?
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30 / M / Dallas, TX
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Posted 3/8/15

cleruninja wrote:


MidoriNoTora wrote:

This is an easy one, I can almost reuse a post I made the other day...

Kimagure Orange Road - classic '80s romantic comedy about an indecisive teenage boy and his relationship with two female school friends (the main plot twist being that the guy and his sisters have paranormal powers and they can't let anyone find out). It is a little bitter at times as one girl declares her feelings immediately and publicly while the other doesn't want to hurt her friend.

I have been wanting to watch this series for ages. Is this series available in any legitimate and affordable fashion?


Some of the DVDs for ~$15 (apparently), but you'd have to pay a lot more than that for many of the volumes.
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62 / M / Central Florida
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Posted 3/9/15 , edited 3/9/15
KURAGEHIME, an ugly duckling story aout an ugly duckling that wants to stay ugly but a chance encounter changes her life. AKA Princess Jellyfish. It is available on netflix as a dub, plus it is already a S.A.V.E. dvd from funimation. There are only five girls pictured below.



Funimation has some episodes for free on youtube so the first one is on us .

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9QxT37FJ5K0
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