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Thread: Friendships in Shoujo and Josei

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    MangaHelper 有名人 / Yuumeijin / Celebrity yukihime03's Avatar
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    Friendships in Shoujo and Josei

    When talking about shoujo and josei, most people will instantly think of romance. However, shoujo and josei are not all about romance; one thing that most people overlook is the friendship between the characters.

    What do you think of friendship in shoujo and josei in general? What do you think the portrayal of the same-sex and opposite-sex friendship in shoujo and josei?
    Is there any friendship in shoujo and josei that leaves an impression in you? The ones that make you go "aww, I want a friendship like that too!"?

    IMO, friendship in shoujo and josei is portrayed very differently from shounen. It seems more muted (of course it is, compared to nakama power ), but it is closer to reality. Also, I seem to encounter more same-sex friendships than the opposite-sex ones...
    One friendship that I love is between Natsume and Nyanko-sensei in Natsume Yuujinchou. Even though they will deny that they get along well, it is plain to see that they do get along well, and they influence each other very much and eventually become better characters.
    I also like to see the friendship between the hosts in Ouran Host Club. They all possess different characteristics, but that only makes their friendship richer. They do silly stuffs together, sometimes pick on Tamaki together, but their daily lives seem very fun that way.

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    MangaHelper 英雄メンバー / Eiyuu Menbaa / Hero Member kindredxiuxiu's Avatar
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    Re: Friendships in Shoujo and Josei

    I've always been a fan of the friendship between Nana and Hachi (Nana) in the series Nana. I've never gotten the impression that it's muted, and it felt more like a sismance for me, especially since the two of them were opposites. And then the lengths Nana is willing to go to protect Hachi and keep her was really cute, albeit a bit creepy.

    Maybe it's because we're talking about an Ai Yazawa work here, but I feel like their friendship was very genuine. Sure, Nana has her issues and Hachi has her flaws as well, but it's still very real.

    If we're looking at "Nakama" friendships like in shounen, the shojo/josei version is toned down a bit, but shounen friendships can be over the top at times.

    Another friendship I like is the threesome of Sawako, Ayane and Chizu from Kimi ni Todoke. They hang out, they talk about boys, and they do 'girl stuff' together. They act like normal high school girls without as much 'over the top' friendships you see elsewhere.

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    MangaHelper 有名人 / Yuumeijin / Celebrity yukihime03's Avatar
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    Re: Friendships in Shoujo and Josei

    Quote Originally Posted by kindredxiuxiu View Post
    If we're looking at "Nakama" friendships like in shounen, the shojo/josei version is toned down a bit, but shounen friendships can be over the top at times.
    Ah. I agree. Though I admit the nakama power is beautiful, it's not that realistic. But I know a few shounen that focus on pretty realistic friendship, which leads to the question why I don't know any shoujo/josei that focus on friendship... Is it just me or...?

    Quote Originally Posted by kindredxiuxiu View Post
    Another friendship I like is the threesome of Sawako, Ayane and Chizu from Kimi ni Todoke. They hang out, they talk about boys, and they do 'girl stuff' together. They act like normal high school girls without as much 'over the top' friendships you see elsewhere.
    Ah, I like their friendship too, though it's a bit too innocent for my taste. I'm more into friends doing 'crazy stuff' instead of 'girl stuff'.

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    MangaHelper 英雄メンバー / Eiyuu Menbaa / Hero Member kindredxiuxiu's Avatar
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    Re: Friendships in Shoujo and Josei

    I can't think of many that have a friendship-focus, and in general, I can't think of many that have the equivalent of a 'sismance' like other series have 'bromances'.

    The only shoujo/josei that has a focus on friendship is probably Nana. Although there's a bit of romance in it, the core relationship in the series is the friendship between Nana and Hachi. Most other friendships in these series are on the side, and the romance is what takes center stage, it seems like.

    What I would've liked to see, though, is a male-female friendship that doesn't have any romantic undertones, and be a prominent friendship in a series. I mean, Kouki and Rin had something close to that in the latter half of Usagi Drop, and it was definitely there in the first part when they were children, but then it kind of went downhill from there.

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    MangaHelper 有名人 / Yuumeijin / Celebrity yukihime03's Avatar
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    Re: Friendships in Shoujo and Josei

    Quote Originally Posted by kindredxiuxiu View Post
    I can't think of many that have a friendship-focus, and in general, I can't think of many that have the equivalent of a 'sismance' like other series have 'bromances'.
    I know, right?

    Quote Originally Posted by kindredxiuxiu View Post
    What I would've liked to see, though, is a male-female friendship that doesn't have any romantic undertones, and be a prominent friendship in a series. I mean, Kouki and Rin had something close to that in the latter half of Usagi Drop, and it was definitely there in the first part when they were children, but then it kind of went downhill from there.
    Yes, yes! That's what I want to see too! I wonder why opposite-sex friendships in shoujo usually turn into romance, especially if they're childhood friends. Not to mention, the most popular thing is to turn these friendships into one-sided love.
    Last edited by yukihime03; November 22, 2013 at 01:40 PM.

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    Re: Friendships in Shoujo and Josei

    Ah, I see. I didn't think that shoujo and josei are more on friendships, not only romance at all. In fact, I really don't know the meaning of shoujo and josei. Can you please explain it to me. I'm not good on some terms on manga. I just only read some manga and if I find it interesting for me, I am continuing reading it. Thanks in advance. Hope to hear from you soon.
    Last edited by stephen12; March 02, 2014 at 09:54 PM.

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    MangaHelper 有名人 / Yuumeijin / Celebrity yukihime03's Avatar
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    Re: Friendships in Shoujo and Josei

    Quote Originally Posted by stephen12 View Post
    Ah, I see. I didn't think that shoujo and josei are more on friendships, not only romance at all. In fact, I really don't know the meaning of shoujo and josei. Can you please explain it to me. I'm not good on some terms on manga. I just only read some manga and if I find it interesting for me, I am continuing reading it. Thanks in advance. Hope to hear from you soon.
    I'm not good at explaining this kind of things, but I'll try. Shoujo and Josei are basically genres based on demographic; shoujo is for young girls (shoujo in Japanese means girl) and josei for adult women (josei means woman). I think many shoujo and josei have romantic focus because lots of women love romantic stuffs.
    Last edited by yukihime03; February 15, 2014 at 10:31 AM.

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    Re: Friendships in Shoujo and Josei

    Thanks for elaborating it. I appreciate it. (Bow) Thanks!

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