FEATURE: Fanart Friday, Sparkly Shoujo Edition
True love, terrible misunderstandings, and lots of traumatic backstories in this week's Fanart Friday
Fanart Friday returns, totally in touch with its feelings. Last week, we faced increasingly stronger enemies alongside our favorite shounen heroes and heroines, but this week we're diving head-first into a world of sparkles, bubbles, and romantic tension--that's right, this week is all about shoujo!
While there are a few outliers, it's safe to say that the vast majority of shoujo titles are sappy, lighthearted romances. Then you get stuff like X, but that's... rare. Let's get this party started!
DISCLAIMER: None of the art presented is the property of myself or Crunchyroll. All characters and series are tm and © their respective creators and corporate owners. All art is the creative property of their respective artists. Any artists who wish to have their work removed from this article may contact me, and appropriate action will be immediately taken.
Paradise Kiss kinda crosses the line--it originally ran in Zipper, a Japanese fashion magazine, but it's a sequel to Gokinjo Monogatari... which ran in Ribon. Ribon (or maybe Ciao) is the sparkliest, girliest manga magazine I've ever laid eyes on.
I've already gone on and on about Fushigi Yugi, but prequel Fushigi Yugi: Genbu Kaiden is actually quite a bit better in my opinion. It makes it a little harder to read since we already know how it's going to end.
We've featured Ghost Hunt here a few times before, but I'm honestly surprised at how popular this series isn't in the US. I have yet to see the whole thing, but it's pretty awesome, and I remember liking the manga quite a bit too!
Y'know what's always funny? Short people. Even midget-midgy shorty-shorts can find love, as seen in Lovely Complex.
We already did a full installment on Sailor Moon, but it's kind of hard to talk about shoujo and not mention what's probably the most popular shoujo title around the world.
As it stands, My Little Monster is probably my favorite show of the new season--it's great having two socially-dysfunctional people in a relationship instead of just one.
Just going off the title, I thought Dengeki Daisy would be an airy slice-of-life kind of series, but asking my roommate about it, she's telling me about hacking and danger and janitorial work and stuff--I never expected that.
Glass Mask is every bit as batshit bonkers as the original Saint Seiya. All the dramatic reactions, all the insane plot twists, all the sudden reveals, just... a lot less eye gouging.
Now, let's get this out of the way--I LOVE Kimi ni Todoke. But unfortunately, to buy the Blu-ray/DVD set, I'm getting a premium product, so it's also pricey as hell. But then again... it's worth it.
Now we're getting into stuff I've never even heard of. Candy Candy is super-retro shoujo, kinda like how I get blank stare when I talk about Sakigake!! Otokojuku.
It's pretty easy to sell Natsume Yujin-cho as a serious demon-hunting quasi-horror story. Personally, I think it's a goofy comedy with moments of drama, not to mention that damned cat and his schemes! Finally, an anime where a cat acts like a cat.
Most of the titles I've mentioned are pretty light-hearted. Kare Kano (otherwise known as Kareshi Kanojou no Jijou or His and Her Circumstances) starts out light-hearted, and quickly delves into the darkest, most horrible corners of child abuse and neglect.
This is not the newest addition to the Pokedex--this is Daa! Daa! Daa!, a rather popular, but less-well-known in the US shoujo series featuring an adorable alien baby and his feline babysitter (also an alien)! So basically, it's like ALF, but with more sparkles.
Normally I'd say something about Gakuen Alice here, but I really need to get this off my chest: I'm glad that there are so many hand puppets in anime and manga. Hand puppets are fun and friendly, and it means we're not getting any ventriloquist dummies. THANK GOD.
You can go right ahead and lump Bokura ga Ita in the same camp as Kare Kano--it lures you in with the promise of a light-hearted, cheery romance, and then drops the heavy shit on you as soon as you walk in the door. She likes him, but he's not up for the lovin' because his past girlfriend freakin' died. That's a pretty good reason to be off the dating scene.
Utena and Anthy, moments before turning into cars and racing down the highway in a fast-paced chase-battle against their enemies, then the car explodes and they're making out while the car careens down the highway at mach speed! Can you tell that I really liked the Utena movie?
by xDestinyStarzx READER SUBMISSION!
Alongside Sailor Moon, Card Captor Sakura is another major title in helping shoujo gain more traction in the US... even if it was the heavily-edited abomination known as Cardcaptors.
If you want to get technical, Earl and Fairy (Hakushaku to Yousei) was originally a series of light novels that later got a manga adaptation in shoujo magazine Margaret, home of nice series like Kimi ni Todoke and total smut like Desire Climax.
I try really hard not to use the same artist's work twice in a single installment, but with Kamisama Kiss' anime being brought Stateside I couldn't resist.
I remember many years ago at my old college's anime club when a friend of mine (a metal vocalist) scoffed at Princess Tutu, and the people telling him it was good. "TUTU?!" he said disbelievingly. A week later, he'd watched the whole thing. It's actually really good, and much darker than you could ever imagine.
It's pretty obvious that I'm more into shounen than shoujo--I am a dude after all--but my all-time favorite shoujo series is easily Ouran High School Host Club.
And that's everything for this week!
The next couple weeks are gonna be pretty exciting for me (not in the fun sense), so next week we're doing something simple--one of my top-three favorite titles of all time, FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST! Who are your favorites from the series? Let us know in the comments!
As always, I love it when you guys send in stuff--send me a link to your work, regardless of your skill level or experience, and I'll make sure to include it in a future installment!
Thanks again for checking out Fanart Friday, and I hope you all have a great weekend!