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Most hated clichés in BL and GL genres

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2:32 am, Nov 10 2022
Posts: 18


Hello, guys, what are the cliches you hate the most in BL and GL genres?
Mine are:
-The feminization both in personality and appearance of the ukes/bottoms in a way that makes them as stand-in for a female character instead of being a representation of an actual camp gay man or an actual queer man in BL
-The relationship between the main characters following dynamics of sexist stereotypical heterosexual relationships in BL
-The fact that in BL only anal sex is represented as true full sexual intercourse between men, not thinking how in real life one need lube for it and it can be done few times and that there are different kinds of sexual practices for a homosexual intercourse
-The fact that bisexual or pansexual people are represented as promiscuous and prone to cheating in both BL and GL
-The fetishization of sexual harassment and abuse instead of exploring how wrong, sick and fu****up are these actions and the people who do them
-The usage of dubious consent in the stories without a proper exploration of it
-The romanticization of toxic relationships in both BL and GL (one of the reasons I like mangas, manhwas and novels like Kaze to ki no uta, Sakuragari, Oniisama e…, Happy sugar life and 2ha is because the story points out how twisted and ill are this kinds of relationships)
-The queerbaiting present in certain visual media
-The fact that GL stories are almost always slice-of-life centered around teenage protagonists
-The representation of lesbian couples as saccharine cute instead of exploring the ups and downs present in every kind of romantic relationships
-There isn’t enough and good representation of trans and nonbinary people

Last edited by Sharaz-de at 2:38 am, Nov 10 2022

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12:20 pm, Nov 10 2022
Posts: 1


oof I'm trying so hard right now not to start arguing or whatever against your opinions buuutt I think the only BL specific trope I hate is the "I'm still straight but I just like you" one.

Last edited by corpseheart at 5:57 pm, Nov 10 2022

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7:54 pm, Nov 10 2022
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You got them all for me for BL! I would add/emphasize for GL the lack of sexual desire -- always so sweet and borderline chaste except for the big special scene.

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-The fact that in BL only anal sex is represented as true full sexual intercourse between men, not thinking how in real life one need lube for it...


The infamous "yaoi hole" (やおい穴). LOL. Things are getting better, one year at a time, lol.

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Post #799846 - Reply to (#799833) by Sharaz-de
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9:52 pm, Nov 10 2022
Posts: 3


I'm really agreed with all your points. Plus SOME people on BL community is kinda toxic.

Post #799848 - Reply to (#799833) by Sharaz-de
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3:10 am, Nov 11 2022
Posts: 11


Quote from Sharaz-de
-The fact that GL stories are almost always slice-of-life centered around teenage protagonists

For me it has to be this! GL has so much potential but it's ridiculously rare to find one that isn't a high school story and explores mature themes.

Post #799849 - Reply to (#799838) by corpseheart
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3:48 am, Nov 11 2022
Posts: 18


I agree with you about how this cliché is irritating
👍

Last edited by Sharaz-de at 3:49 am, Nov 11 2022

Post #799850 - Reply to (#799845) by flowinmyboat
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3:57 am, Nov 11 2022
Posts: 18


I agree with you that the fact that the couples are too chaste in GL is an irritating cliché: lesbians, bisexuals and pansexual women all feel sexual attraction and only women who are in the asexual spectrum don’t feel it in real life.
Thought, it’s important to remember that there are GL stories, especially if they are written by men, where there’s too much fanservice and almost no plot.
I like GL stories like “Moonlight garden” by Kang Unnie and MissPM because the lust and the fanservice are properly placed in a well-written plot with a good exploration of its characters and setting.

Post #799851 - Reply to (#799848) by hesssu
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4:14 am, Nov 11 2022
Posts: 18


I totally agree with you 👍
I love GL series like “Moonlight garden” by Kang Unnie and MissPM, “Hatshepsut” by Ryouko Yamagishi, “Female general and eldest princess” by Please don’t laugh, “Vengeance” and “Opium” by Aji, “Happy sugar life” by Tomiyaki Kagisora and “Her Shim-Cheong” by Seri and Bi-wan and Western works that have sapphic romances as the main ones like “Monstress” by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda, “The saga of the Renunciates” in the “Darkover” series by Marion Zimmer Bradley, “In the vanishers’ palace” by Aliette de Bodard and “The locked tomb” series by Tamsyn Muir because they show the potential of the genre in the fantasy, science fiction, historical and mystery genres and how it can explore complex and mature themes, including the discussion about how gender and sexual orientation are more complex than how society thinks they are and the analysis of how damaging rigid gender roles, sexism and misogynistic ideas are to women and especially to the non-heterosexual ones.

Post #799869 - Reply to (#799833) by Sharaz-de
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8:11 am, Nov 12 2022
Posts: 3


Quote from Sharaz-de
The fetishization of sexual harassment and abuse instead of exploring how wrong, sick and fu****up are these actions and the people who do them

I really hate when they do this ugh one of my biggest pet peeves, makes me drop it immediately 😐

Post #799872 - Reply to (#799850) by Sharaz-de
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2:14 pm, Nov 12 2022
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Quote from Sharaz-de
I agree with you that the fact that the couples are too chaste in GL is an irritating cliché: lesbians, bisexuals and pansexual women all feel sexual attraction and only women who are in the asexual spectrum don’t feel it in real life.
Thought, it’s important to remember that there are GL stories, e ...


100%. GL that's basically lesbian porn for men is barely GL to me. If you haven't checked them out, Otona ni Natte mo (SHIMURA Takako) is a good one I read lately! That author is always refreshing, but warning, they do push some boundaries in some of their stories.

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2:20 am, Nov 13 2022
Posts: 555


Oh god, good topic.
In general, I don’t mind toxicity if the characters are aware of it. Some can be cute, but again, the usual suspect (usually, most likely it’s always the uke) is well aware of what he’s getting himself into.
Now, let’s see: BL
1. Jealousy (granted, I don’t really read any other types of romances so it’s probably present in those too).
Hate, hate that usually the submissive one can’t even as much as look sideways because it’s the end of the world. Even in cute stories, the jealousy trope annoys me to no end.
2. He was previously straight, so someday he’ll leave you for a woman.
Um, some relationships end, unfortunately. It doesn’t matter if he was previously straight or not, even if it were to happen that he ends up with a woman in the future. Unless said character was an a-hole that was just messing with the other party, feelings can change and the relationship can fail.
3. In that same vein, the whole “I can’t give you a normal life/ kids”.
Not all relationships/marriage happen so that kids can be produced. Some people don’t want kids. Surprising, I know.
4. Everyone is gay.
I mean, I like reading BL , but c’mon, really? Especially grating when the characters are siblings and both just so happen to be gay. Feels like lazy writing and pandering, unless it’s a story where there are multiple siblings and 2 happen to be gay, then that’s more plausible, but usually it’s just that one might have always been gay, and the other one didn’t have his “awakening” till he met “ the one”.
5. Childhood friend pining for the other
Not really a fan of the whole “ childhood friend” trope, especially because most have the same beats. Neither can spit it out, both think the other one doesn’t like them. They become distant. One of them may become the popular one who switches girlfriends like he switches underwear until someone finally says something.
6. Sex=Love
Maybe this is more a general romance trope, than a specific BL one, but…geez, I mean, I guess for the most part that’s true, but just because there is no sex, it doesn’t mean there is no love (and I don’t mean in a platonic way either.)
I’m sure there are more, but off the top of my head these are the ones I can remember. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become pickier. Things I was ok with before, like the mild jealousy now just annoys me. Like dude, just because your bf talks to another guy doesn’t mean he’s suddenly gonna stop liking you. Get a d@mn grip.

Last edited by catandmouse at 2:27 am, Nov 13 2022

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4:37 am, Nov 13 2022
Posts: 313


The clichés I hate the most:
- Why is the big guy always the top, if their is a hot tall muscular guy that is a bottom, then it receives already a high score from me.
- Why does the guy with a heavy weapon down their, be the one to put it in? They always say it doesn't fit; I think then just switch positions.
- Some Yaoi want the Yaoi tag genre and just force the sex scene, while the story would be much better without it.
- I'm still searching for a boys love story with a fantasy theme similar to Solo Leveling (something certainly better than those clones and it might even be better than the original Solo Leveling.) In general: why can't their be action in Boys love?
- love triangels: the most hated cliché in the romance genre
- the lack of muscular guys (but yeah, it is a general cliché in all of manga, the only manga with muscular guys are the ones where everyone is muscular. And if their is a muscular guy, he ends up as the enemy of some sort of small guy. The rest of it doesn't need to be told.)
I know that the Bara genre exist, but lately it is poisoned by the furry cliché (95% of all Bara lately are sex manga between animals.)
- A really tall guy is rare (Two meters or taller, or six feet and seven inch or taller for the people in the States.) A lot of people say that a tall guy is cliché in BL, but it's the opposite of what most people think. That tall guy is just average in height and the other guy is short. But yeah, I live in a country where the average height is in the higher numbers.

I'm also a guy that likes other guys, and my ideal type is a two meter muscular guy that is a bottom. I can't image someone like that to have a bad character. And if that guy has some similar interests, I'm sold. Off course the perfect guy isn't born yet, or how do they say it in the states: That guy doesn't exist.

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Post #799879 - Reply to (#799872) by flowinmyboat
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7:25 am, Nov 13 2022
Posts: 18


Thank you for this piece of advice about a GL manga worthy of reading ☺️

Post #799880 - Reply to (#799876) by catandmouse
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7:42 am, Nov 13 2022
Posts: 18


I totally agree with you 👍
BL stories (and also heterosexual romances) should depict or no jealousy because they trust their lover or jealousy is kept in check by the one who feels it because he knows that isn’t rational in order to represent healthier relationships.
I hate the clichés you pointed out in 2 and in 3 too because both are extremely homophobic and the second is sexist because it represents the old patriarchal idea that women should always marry and think to give their husbands children since it’s the only reason for their existence.
Also, the importance of having children and the problems in not having them because you are in a homosexual relationship should be an important plot point only in stories set in feudal or clanic societies where inheritance by blood is fundamental for the whole social organization, not in modern or futuristic settings.
I find making two siblings both gay in a story is lazy writing too.
I hate the way the “childhood friend pining” trope is dealt in most East Asian media to be irritating too and I consider the way it’s used in many BL stories, that you pointed out in 5, to be both stupid and sexist.
I agree with you that there should be more stories that point out that there can be love without desire and desire without love.

Post #799921 - Reply to (#799878) by deadphoenix
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4:26 am, Nov 16 2022
Posts: 18


I totally agree with you 👍
I’d like to see more muscular hunks in all kind of mangas, not only in the ones where all male characters are muscular, too.
One of the reasons why I love BL Chinese fantasy novels like “Mo dao zu shi” by Mo Xiang Tong Xiu, “Liu yao: The revitalization of Fuyao sect” by Priest, “The husky and his white cat shizun” by Meatbun doesn’t eat meat and “Dinghai fusheng records” by Fei Tian Ye Xiang is the fact that there’s a lot of good fights and action and well-written plots.
I think there should be more BL adventure fantasy stories (and GL ones too) because I don’t see why we should always read slice-of-life stories in these genres when there’s a lot of potential (like the authors could retell a legend or a fairytale as a homosexual love story, like in “The vanishers’ palace” by Aliette de Bodard, or use real societies that accepted homosexuality and more than two genders, like the Polynesian cultures or North American Native cultures, for their stories or create a whole world where gender doesn’t work like ours, like in “The Tensorate” series by Neon Yang, or where there aren’t gender restrictions, like “Dragon Age” franchise by BioWare or “The locked tomb” series by Tamsyn Muir or the “Xuya universe” series by Aliette de Bodard) and non-heterosexual people love the fantasy genre and action plots too, as the director of BioWare rightly pointed out when answering to the people who didn’t like the possibilities to pursue homosexual romances in their videogames.
I think that there aren’t many people that Westerners would call tall in mangas because East Asian people tend to be shorter than Westerners and other ethnic groups because of their genetic pool.

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