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Why do you not read Shoujo Manga

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TiffanyMunro
Post #557288
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4:06 am, Jun 21 2012
Posts: 15


Hey guys. Specifically looking for people who do not like shoujo manga and if you could let me know what your main complaints are?

I looked and I couldn't find any other topics like this so please pardon me if there is.

I love shoujo manga and it is ALL I read. I don't read shounen for my own reasons. But I've noticed that a lot of women read shoujo AND shounen, then men ONLY read shounen. I know there are exceptions but this is what I've seen for the mass majority. Any comment on this?

I'm doing a panel on Shoujo Manga at a convention next month in an attempt to get more people reading shoujo manga. I'd like to think up great titles for people who typically don't like shoujo manga, but I need to know what they don't like first.

Thanks in advance for your help!
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jane9115
Post #557314
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6:38 am, Jun 21 2012
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Good question and a tough one.

First when it comes to the men part of your comment about how boys will only read shounen but their are girls that can read both. This is actually a very broad question, generally you have to look at society and the perception of "girly" things by communities or families themselves. Same thing applies to movies/tv shows. This isn't really an answer but here's an example for you, when I was university I was part of anime/manga club and generally the boys who read shoujo were gay so the straight guys in our club who did maybe on the sly or secretly read shoujo didn't say it because they didn't want people to think they were "gay". It just how society (well north american) has brought up men to be, while the rules are beginning to loosen their are still issues.

Now, why I personally don't read to much shoujo. I'm not a fan of all romance series or all action series, luckily for me the industry does seem to be changing and I'm getting more of a mix of both but I digress.

I guess I just get bored with shoujo sometimes, love is love, romance is romance, no matter what new characters are put into the story its still about the relationship and feelings and that bores sometimes. While more action oriented I can get any different situation, I can get Soul Reapers, Akuma, talking animals, murder, political intrigue, outer space. There are a lot more areas to cover.

Of course their are many shoujo that are not just about the romance, that have a secondary plot that is fabulous! But my preference tends to be non-romantic main plot, romantic secondary plot.

I also personally know people including myself that have felt at times insulted by shoujo as a women. Sometimes I feel like women are treated more as love sick girls, or totally oblivious, there is a lack of realism in the romance/relationship bothers me. Sometimes I just want to yell "Communication people!! It's the key to any relationship!!!!" but that just might be life and experience talking.

My suggestion for your panel, is to bring some titles in that are not just about the romance, but about something more - whether that be action, mystery, adventure, fantasy, sci-fi - just remember to emphasis that its not all about the romance and cute-sy-ness. Also talk about some more mature titles, that the feminists or just proud to be a women (not that I'm saying your not but you know the type i'm referring to?) would enjoy for a strong (not stupid or ignorant) female lead who they can connect to!

Good luck!!

TiffanyMunro
Post #557316
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6:48 am, Jun 21 2012
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Wow thanks for the in depth input!

It really makes me think of the recent post about not getting "Romance".

I do find longer shoujo series (past 20) usually revolve around something higher then romance, with romance taking a back seat. Romance as a sole conflict does expire it seems. I guess I'll bring that up.

I also like the feminist comment. I am very feminist but I'm a sucker for some less then respectful stories anyways. I could also do a little slide on strong female characters in shoujo.

Thanks so much!

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Oddwaffle
Post #557318
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6:54 am, Jun 21 2012
Posts: 81


It really depends on the contents actually. I read both shounen and shoujo manga but now I rarely touch shoujo manga. This doesn't count comedies since I think comedies and gags belong to a whole different set. The primary reason I don't read much shoujo mang is because I don't really like romance. I also stop reading several shounen lately except a few very exceptional ones.

Most shoujo manga can start with an interesting plot but somewhere down the line they all go into a pure romance stage of 'loves me, loves me not'. There are few shoujo manga that has little to no romance and even fewer that are actually good enough to keep reading. Some shoujo manga can get light enough on the romance to actually develop an actual plot. But you are more likely getting into Josei territory when you get light on the romance.

Shounen manga is the same as Shoujo but it's fueled by fighting spirit instead of romance.

jane9115
Post #557321
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7:01 am, Jun 21 2012
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Hey I'm glad I could help!

I think someone like you who loves shoujo and is probably well read knows how to find what you want when you want it, but people who are not familiar with the genre may have a really tough time finding what their looking for so just bring a wide range of titles that can accommodation a variety of readers!

Anyway I hope you have a lot of success at your panel because I know everyone has their exception to a genre and hopefully you can give that to someone! biggrin

TiffanyMunro
Post #557322 - Reply to (#557318) by Oddwaffle
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7:04 am, Jun 21 2012
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Quote from Oddwaffle
Shounen manga is the same as Shoujo but it's fueled by fighting spirit instead of romance.


In my directing class my teacher said that story is fueled by Sex or Power.
I never really looked at Shounen as the power and Shoujo as the sex! But I guess that is a main difference. I don't really read shounen so I dunno. Thanks for your input!

Quote from jane9115
Hey I'm glad I could help!

I think someone like you who loves shoujo and is probably well read knows how to find what you want when you want it, but people who are not familiar with the genre may have a really tough time finding what their looking for so just bring a wide range of titles that can a ...


Thanks! I really hope I can inspire more people! It's my first time running a panel but I hope my passion will come across to whoever shows up. eyes

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Felius
Post #557327
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7:17 am, Jun 21 2012
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I find that most Shoujo have very weak protagonists. If you allow me to quote myself from a thread that happened quite a while ago:

Quote from Felius
I have severe issues with the passive useless ineffectual protagonists, with no ambition (other than marry, when even that) that plagues the genre. I also have issues with the over idealized romances specially if the male lead is extremely pushy about starting and maintaining the romance (the worse cases of this make the character seems a border line rapist, or worse), which is also kinda prevalent. Value dissonance probably plays a big part in my dislike of those, but anyway. Also, the shallowness previous poster have complained about is also an issue. If I'm going to read something for the emotions, the characters and the development of the cast relationships I want it to be well written and deep. I want the characters to look and feel human.

There are shoujos where this does not happen, or happen in a lesser degree, and I do like those. I like a lot of CLAMP titles, Sailor Moon is actually pretty nice, Kamisama Hajimemashita is (or at least was, haven't read it in a relatively long time) pretty good, I really liked Fruit's Basket, and quite a few more. That said, most Shoujo that I find seems to be heavy on the issues I listed before, and I have no patience to keep searching through the trash till I find the goods ones, so nowadays, unless it's very well recommended, if it's listed as a Shoujo, it's already a point against it. The mangas I read these days that are intended to the female public are generally Josei, as I find much easier to find good writing there than in the average Shoujo.

That all said, most of my reading is Seinens and Shounens.



TiffanyMunro
Post #557330 - Reply to (#557327) by Felius
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7:28 am, Jun 21 2012
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Quote from Felius
I find that most Shoujo have very weak protagonists. If you allow me to quote myself from a thread that happened quite a while ago:

Quote from Felius
I have severe issues with the passive useless ineffectual protagonists, with no ambition (other than marry, when even that) that plagues the genre. I also have issues ...


Hmm I can't disagree. There is a lot of junk out there. Although a lot of people like junk, even me once in a while.

I do agree with Josei being a more "intelligent?" form of shoujo. But then it begs the question whats the difference between Josei and Shoujo? Just the publication? Age demographic? Content? Hmm


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Roughan
Post #557376
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2:24 pm, Jun 21 2012
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I'm a guy that used to avoid shojo. Stuff like Fruits Basket and other mainstream stuff just bored me with their archetypical cutesy heroines and cool bishounens. The first shojo that I really liked was Adachi Mitsuru's shojo because they were similar to his shounen mangas except with girl as the protagonists. Then I discovered some great works that dealt with more complex themes and ideas and I realized my distaste for shojo was merely distaste for cliched high school romance shojo just like 95+% of manga from any other demographics are cliched crap. Nowaday most of the manga I read are shojo, a lot of it from talented authors like those of the Magnificient 49ers and other influential writers that followed them.

You might find this article (and others on Matt Thorn's site) helpful for your presentation.
http://www.matt-thorn.com/shoujo_manga/japan_quarterly/inde x.php

Last edited by Roughan at 2:34 pm, Jun 21

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Humza
Post #557383
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2:54 pm, Jun 21 2012
Posts: 228


for me it's the art .....in most shoujo titles the art is so ..how can I put it ...girly that it's just big turn off . Although I've read quite a few shouji and don't dislike the genre all that much the art is realy important

TiffanyMunro
Post #557418 - Reply to (#557376) by Roughan
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7:44 pm, Jun 21 2012
Posts: 15


Quote from Roughan
I'm a guy that used to avoid shojo. Stuff like Fruits Basket and other mainstream stuff just bored me with their archetypical cutesy heroines and cool bishounens. The first shojo that I really liked was Adachi Mitsuru's shojo because they were similar to his shounen mangas except with girl as the ...


Thank you that article looks PERFECT. Most of what I know is personal expirience not factual history so this is AWESOME.

Wah why is this in the shoujo Forum? sad You can't ask people who like shoujo why they don't like shoujo. bigrazz Oh well, the info you guys have given me has been great.

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FormX
Post #557422
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8:17 pm, Jun 21 2012
Posts: 678


Main reason: protagonists are female, I'm male, and that doesn't work for me especially if it's romance.

As a result, all the shoujo/josei I've read have male mcs.

Also, the portrayal of some guys in the typical shoujo is obviously aimed to attract a female audience, and as a guy myself it seems either very homo or fake.

As for the art... it can depend, but in general shounen/seinen is better. Especially for any action scenes.


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Post #557429
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8:48 pm, Jun 21 2012
Posts: 96


I'm a guy and I read a few shoujos but I'm quite picky, they have to be very well written. Art is less of a concern though most have the same generic style for some reason. Most of the stuff is boring because the story gets dragged out, only so much can happen in a romance story without it feeling very forced and the characters don't feel like real people at all with the borderline rapist bishounens etc. Indecisive and "weak" girls seem quite common in shoujos and it's very annoying, not to mention all the clichés (like bullying or fan clubs that take it too far).

I mostly stick to seinen and shounen these days and the few actually romantic ones I read are seinen. Shounen is of course also plagued with clichés but the settings can be vastly different and it's less noticeable whilst shoujos usually take place in school.

I just have a big problem with how mangas (well, Japanese series) portray relationships so unless it's a secondary thing I probably won't read it.

Jatodude
Post #557432
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8:53 pm, Jun 21 2012
Posts: 34


Hmm...

First is usually the art. The shoujo that I've seen usually has poorly drawn art. Which also corresponds to every character looking exactly the same besides the hair. And all I see when browsing them is the same theme. There's always the shy girl, who gets swept of her feet by the guy with 4 foot wide shoulders (Exaggeration LOL). And the one girl with curly blond hair that pretends to be the protagonists friend, but secretly despises her.

I have seen some interesting ones, but eventually, they all basically boil down to the same romance, school life, adventure a day type story. Not to say it's the only Genre that does that, but it happens like every time.

TiffanyMunro
Post #557493 - Reply to (#557422) by FormX
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5:47 am, Jun 22 2012
Posts: 15


Quote from FormX
Main reason: protagonists are female, I'm male, and that doesn't work for me especially if it's romance.

As a result, all the shoujo/josei I've read have male mcs.

Also, the portrayal of some guys in the typical shoujo is obviously aimed to attract a female audience, and as a guy myself it seems e ...


That's actually an interesting one. I read an article on women portrayed in comics and often people expect men only to accept male heros while women are expected to accept male heros and female heros.

You should check out Josei. There have been a lot of fantasy josei titles recently with all male casts. Although Josei and Shoujo aren't the same bigrazz

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