Bad Romance

Happy (Late) Valentine’s Day, everyone. I was planning on getting this out that Thursday, but… yeah whatever. I think this is the perfect time for me to talk about Bad Romance. And I don’t mean the song by Lady Gaga. I mean half-assed written “romance” seen in recent anime.

A common trend I’ve seen in anime nowadays is that some girl always fall for the male lead because he’s the main character. No explanation as to why, we just get “Hey, check it out. She’s in love with him. Don’t ask why, just ship them!” It’s like no one has the time or effort to actually develop a romance and make it believable.

I think the biggest offender have to be harem series. There are only a handful of series that’ I’ve seen that avoids this issue for the most part. Like in Tenchi Muyo! GXP, we have like a number of women who lusts for Seina, particularly Amane (whom I dislike the most). Half the time, I get the feeling that they all like him because he the adorkable type. But that’s it, to be honest.

One bad example had to be Campione!. In the first episode, the male and female leads meet and in the next, she suddenly wants his dick. We don’t get any explanation why other than he beat up a God. Admiration is one thing, but throwing yourself at him for no good reason is an issue. It really just made me give up on the show. I’ve only saw two episodes of this, so I don’t know how far this went.

Of course, I have to mention Sword Art Online. I know it may seem like I’m mentioning this just to tear it apart some more, but bear with me here. If any anime is guilty of this issue, it’s definitely this one. Almost every female Kirito meets (including his sister/cousin) falls for him for no significant reason. It gets even worse Kirito and Asuna get married. These two did absolutely nothing that implied any sense of romance. They hung out for a few episodes; okay. She shared sandwiches with him; pretty much the only thing Asuna is good at. She slugged him for accidentally groping her tit; typical tsundere. But when he barely defeats a boss, all of a sudden, she’s all over him like “OMG I”M IN LUV WITH U KIRITO-KUN LET’S GET MARRIED!!!” Uh, what? No. It doesn’t work that way! When I say this show does everything wrong, I mean it does EVERYTHING, romance included, wrong.If that is a reason how romance doesn’t and shouldn’t work, I don’t know what is.

Wanna know what a good romance in anime is? Eureka Seven. There are several good reasons why Renton and Eureka fall in love and it’s more than just love at first sight. After that, it develops beyond that. There are seveal other couples that have their moments too, like Holland and Talho, Dominic and Anemone, Moondoggie and Gidget, and so on, but they get somewhat less attention because Renton and Eureka are the Official Couple.

It just seems to me that non-romance anime does romance better. Personally I think it all comes down to how much chemistry and devotion a couple has with each other. Like in The Future Diary (Mirai Nikki), Yuno is devoted to Yukiteru. Very devoted. Then we meet Marco and Ai, who reveal themselves to be the better couple, because Yukiteru and Yuno doesn’t have mutual devotion. If there’s no chemistry and no devotion, the romance isn’t believable and it feels like nothing worthwhile will come out of it, like that crush you had on that teacher in grade school.

One thought on “Bad Romance

  1. Andrew

    This is a little late, but I just have to repeat this until SAO fans understand…

    Two days worth of vomit made a glopping sound as it flowed endlessly out of me after reading the synopsis for SAO.

    Yes, to each his own, I know, but even though I haven’t actually seen it (and certainly do not plan to), this show sounds bad on a hideous new level. And unfortunately its success may only encourage the development of similar Stu-centric wish fulfillment stories out of Japan in coming years.

    And in conclusion, allow me to quote another demotivational poster floating around out there: “Twilight: Still a better romance than SAO.”


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