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Is it just me, or are shoujo mangas getting even more predictable?

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StarlightDreams
Post #272638
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8:12 pm, Apr 2 2009
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Well, yes.
Because nowadays, mangaka think they need to be like everyone else and copy and cliche things to get popular. And sad thing, it's true. A lot of manga/mangaka are famous for certain works that you can find the same elements in any other manga.
They're manga are always similar, recyclying ideas.
Also, the same problem isn't just in Shoujo manga, it's widely known in Shounen manga also. If you want a more complicated plot, go read Josei and Seinen. Though there ARE some good shoujo manga, don't stereotype and think all shoujo manga is like that.

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hatsumimi99
Post #272665
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manger le toupee
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10:02 pm, Apr 2 2009
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base_coat, being a hardcore shoujo manga reader since the early '90s and going by ratio of good to bad, I'd be obliged to say that the older shoujo probably have better written direction than a lot of stuff that gets churned out nowadays, I'm embarassed to say. The only thing that got "updated" was the art. A lot of the stuff that made manga great back then (despite the artwork), seems to be that missing element in more recent works. You can certainly find a few gems in shoujo, but a lot is built on cliche. This depends on what you're reading of course, as shoujo is diverse in its sub-genres.

You get people like Kuramochi Fusako who have worked for decades and just never cease to amaze you at how heartfelt their stories are. And then you have stuff that runs in Cheese! >.>;

Mainstream josei is actually just as/even more so predictable to me. If you've read enough josei (try over 500 dollars worth), you'll see what I mean.

Anyway, like Starlight mentioned, a lot of stories are built on recycled ideas. I'd like to think that people would be smart enough to realize that. What's more important than that is how those recycled concepts are presented, really. Not just in art, but in story too.

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base_coat
Post #272669
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Fruit Salad
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10:35 pm, Apr 2 2009
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Yeah, not only the art is updated, but also the sexuality. Just think of today's shoujo smut. And the fan service too (think of non-romance and romance shoujo as well).

Last edited by base_coat at 10:49 pm, Apr 2

hatsumimi99
Post #272671
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manger le toupee
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10:52 pm, Apr 2 2009
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Can't stand "smut", actually. That's what I consider the epitome of cliche. I find it distasteful when sex in manga is either a) not executed well and is unrealistic or b) becomes gratuitous (smut for the sake of titillation.), and smut is all that and a bag of fried fish.

Not even some helter-skelter plot thrown into the mix will convince me otherwise. Though I forgive Aihara Miki for actually being capable of hatching out a half-decent plot.



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Calíbre
Post #272679 - Reply to (#272445) by Ohai
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Madman
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11:52 pm, Apr 2 2009
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Quote from Ohai
Even the mangas that everyone's saying "OMG, This manga is the best and it's so unique!" I'm able to predict to a 90% correct average.
Maybe I'm just getting good at this, or maybe shoujo mangas are just becoming more and more dull. Especially the characters, don't even get me started.

I think I need to go read some more shounen =c=

No, everything is getting more and more predictable.

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brutelord
Post #272703 - Reply to (#272445) by Ohai
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2:22 am, Apr 3 2009
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Quote from Ohai
Even the mangas that everyone's saying "OMG, This manga is the best and it's so unique!" I'm able to predict to a 90% correct average.
Maybe I'm just getting good at this, or maybe shoujo mangas are just becoming more and more dull. Especially the characters, don't even get me started.

I think I need to go read some more shounen =c=

Sadly I have noticed the same thing. Here of recent I have been reading less manga because of this. T_T
Personally when I read I analyze and try to predict how its going to end and what is going to happen next. Its fun and challenges me, or used to.

Something that irritates me that is when shoujo/romance anime shove all the romance into the last two episodes. Its become quite the trend as of late.


Odette
Post #273124
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5:48 am, Apr 4 2009
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Actually, I think they're getting less predictable. More shoujo/josei mangas these days are not just about romance (I see Ouran High School Host Club as an evolution from Hana Yori Dango). Also, there are more female mangakas writing shounen/seinen mangas and vice versa, which encourages cross-pollination of ideas.

Predictability probably applies to the great mass of shoujo mangas (although I see this as general phenomenon including shounen and not exclusive to shoujo), but to me, the trend is improvement not degeneration. There are great mangas of the past, but there were crappy mangas back then, too; probably, we just don't read them anymore, so we perceive that there are more low-quality mangas now than before.

Last edited by Odette at 8:28 am, Apr 4

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kizku
Post #273144
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7:55 am, Apr 4 2009
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once you've read a few hundreds of thousand pages of manga, be it shoujo or whatever, you get the hang of it and just know whats going on. problem with shoujo especially is that the bulk of it is romance. there's your average retarded lead character and a few possible love interests. so, you're reading it and you want to be satisfied. most readers are satisfied if what they want comes true, means the lead gets together with their favourite love interest. now in order to appeal to a lot of readers, the mangaka will try to focus on one love interest, be it in a subtle way or pretty obvious. those who can find these hints (about everyone above age 16) should be able to predict the ending

yes, there are those manga where the mangaka decides to change stuff and puts in a stupid twist or doesn't care about closure when the manga ends. but those are the manga where people say "ouh, was one hell of a ride but the ending sucked major balls" or "was good until stupidtwistinvolumex, stopped reading then"

not that twists never work out, but there're few mangaka that make good twists

turned out to be a kinda long rambling against shoujo..

chulian1819
Post #273189
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chulian
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1:30 pm, Apr 4 2009
Posts: 837


I have the awser wy iss so predictable:
Shoujo at the end is about what girls reallly want in their harts and it just plain old classic love, what im saying is that the story can have multiple beginings but the end aims to the same thing.......... so with its just not predicteble, it just the goal is the same, or it couldnt call it shoujo....

also there are toooooooooo many shoujo storys so theres also dificulty to the mangakas to brain out new stories that havent been written

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noisette
Post #273195
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2:09 pm, Apr 4 2009
Posts: 237


I think that there is a lot of manga out there, regardless of genre, and that the majority of it is nothing special (read: crap). It isn't that shoujo manga are getting more predictable, its just that with so many scanlations we see a lot more of the junk than we would if we only had officially licensed books.

Helaine
Post #275421 - Reply to (#272665) by hatsumimi99
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1:09 am, Apr 13 2009
Posts: 20


Quote from hatsumimi99
base_coat, being a hardcore shoujo manga reader since the early '90s and going by ratio of good to bad, I'd be obliged to say that the older shoujo probably have better written direction than a lot of stuff that gets churned out nowadays, I'm embarassed to say. The only thing that got "updated" was the art. A lot of the stuff that made manga great back then (despite the artwork), seems to be that missing element in more recent works. You can certainly find a few gems in shoujo, but a lot is built on cliche. This depends on what you're reading of course, as shoujo is diverse in its sub-genres.

You get people like Kuramochi Fusako who have worked for decades and just never cease to amaze you at how heartfelt their stories are. And then you have stuff that runs in Cheese! >.>;

Mainstream josei is actually just as/even more so predictable to me. If you've read enough josei (try over 500 dollars worth), you'll see what I mean.

Anyway, like Starlight mentioned, a lot of stories are built on recycled ideas. I'd like to think that people would be smart enough to realize that. What's more important than that is how those recycled concepts are presented, really. Not just in art, but in story too.



dear god it's so true! Old shoujo manga have low art quality but the story is REAL good. It's sometimes mixed up with comedy and adventure, not like the recent ones. Recently shojo manga just got too focused up in ROMANCE and HAPPILY EVER AFTER dream that perhaps contains what the mangaka (otaku) wants, since most likely they lack of social contacts drive them insane.


I'm an otaku myself, but I do realize that there's something between manga and REALITY. Everything in shoujo manga nowadays is just SO BORING and I dislike how it's only full of NO-FLAW BISHONENS that somehow likes the main girl when it's so clear that the girl herself doesn't have a single good quality. DEAR GOD, will it ever happen? I don't despise fiction but at least give some PLOT! some manga like *cough love monster cough* is just full of bullshit, damn it.


Write something like basara...... with actual plot behind the romance... Anatolia story is a good choice too... shoujo nowadays doesn't contain the "up-and-down" moment when the character is in actual depression, recently shoujo has become too plain that the only problem ever comes is when somebody kidnaps her, or seeing her prince with another who is actually just a classmate or somebody unimportant.... and then everything is solved in a chapter. duh -.-


hahaha, full of rants as always. But I really miss full-plotted romance... argh!

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base_coat
Post #275442
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Fruit Salad
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2:32 am, Apr 13 2009
Posts: 1356


@Helaine
I actually don't think the happily-ever-after types are sold to female otaku. They more target young girls in general.

What is sold to female otaku is yaoi, shounen-ai potential and doujinshi.

XxKumagoroXx
Post #275451
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Fujoshi ♥
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3:02 am, Apr 13 2009
Posts: 807


That's why I don't read as much shoujo as I used to. Besides the storyline being predictable, I have a canny habit of guessing random events and they end up being right most of the time. (That's how I ruined a few good animes while watching them with my friends). laugh
It's pretty much the same drama cliche.
@base_coat
Definetly true, yaoi sells biggrin mostly amongst female otakus.
The cutesy mangas like Shugo Chara are aimed for younger audiences.

If shoujo mangas end up in happily-ever-after, which most do, it feels like the story was missing something. So now I stick to shounen jump (that too has cliches) and some yaoi.

Terpsichore
Post #275455
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Sweetly Macabre
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3:21 am, Apr 13 2009
Posts: 1005


The more manga you read, the more predicictable the plots become, because certain stereotypes exist in every genre. Those elements appeal to the target audience, so stereotypical and predictible stories will continue to be published. There are rarely truly unique plots. The quality of the writing is what makes the story intruiging or unique.

For the record, Shounen isn't all that much better.

base_coat
Post #275456
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Fruit Salad
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3:21 am, Apr 13 2009
Posts: 1356


I am not just talking about Shugo Chara and the like. I think those big name shoujo magazines and smut magazines probably have a similar status as those women's magazines. They are sold to young girls/women in general.

Have a look at candyloop's list of shoujo and josei magazines. You can pretty much guess which ones are more otaku-oriented than the rest if you have read enough manga. Same goes to shounen magazines. biggrin

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