Romantic Anime Can Be Cliché

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Young loves, high school couples, and confessions are the essence of romance anime. Many seasoned anime fans have grown up with classics like Kimi ni Todoke, Granny, Ao Haru Walk, and more, but each of these shows offers different sides of romance. Sadly, the boy-meets-girl saturation and ensuing bliss is pretty obvious, and honestly, fans are out of the whole “perfect romance” bubble.

Over the past decade, audiences have shown great interest in anime series that take a more “realistic” approach to relationships and their complexities. The romance anime genre has gained countless gems over the years that manage to tell stories that go straight to the heart. Whether it’s unrequited love or trying to process romantic feelings, some of these romance anime will give audiences a taste of what it’s like to be in a real relationship.

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Kimi ni Todoke offers pure relationship

It is undeniable that Kimi ni Todoke deserves a spot in every “best romance anime of all time” list. It’s one of the most inspiring and wholesome coming of age stories that will leave audiences with a tear or two because it’s so good. When an unpopular girl meets a popular boy, it’s just not about the boy pushing the girl to the status quo or even bullying her into accepting her feelings for him.

Kimi ni Todoke is a beautiful journey in which two opposite poles find common ground in their feelings for each other and the things they love. Sawako Kuronuma and Shouta Kazehaya are perfect examples of how two people have to go through a journey to understand their feelings for each other instead of suddenly falling in love without any depth.


Horimiya is a drama-free watch

Horimiya has one of the best rom-com buildups of all time. This anime perfectly explains why every romantic story doesn’t always need a damsel in distress. Kyouko Hori is a brash and confident girl who ends up falling in love with a shy and timid guy who hides his true personality from the world.

The fact that they become a couple without too much drama and move on with their lives is completely refreshing and realistic. There’s no love triangle or will-they-won’t-they-slow-burn. The two protagonists are well aware of their situation and what they think of their personality. There are no unnecessary complications surrounding their families; they simply avoid “clichés” and share a very healthy relationship.


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After the rain gives a mature perspective

It’s one of those romance anime where the audience is divided on whether the love of the protagonists is appreciable or not. After the rain is not a typical high school romance; instead, it tackles a much more realistic and mature story than audiences might expect. The show is about a 17-year-old girl who falls in love with a 45-year-old cafe manager where she works. There are absolutely no negatives to take away from this story as it plays on sensitive topics that are beautifully portrayed through the characters.


The feelings of the main character are not thrown away suddenly at any time just because of the huge age gap. Instead, it’s beautifully explained that her feelings may stem from her lack of courage and maturity. While on the other hand, the man values ​​their relationship without exploiting any romantic feelings for Akira. There’s a relationship, but it’s so well-crafted and unique that you can’t just give it one label. RELATED: This Anime About a Married Couple Drinking Cocktails Will Have You Shouting “Kawaii!”

Wotakoi is a wholesome “adult” experience

Even though the word “otaku” is a kind of pejorative term in Japan, that doesn’t stop these four adult characters from pursuing their passions. Wotakoi: Love is hard for Otaku is a romantic series where the need to appreciate people who accept their love for things without judgment is skillfully portrayed. Wotakoi follows the story of four adults in an office who are interested in different things like BL, cosplay and manga. Narumi Momose, who is a hardcore fujoshi, is afraid to show this side of her romantic interests due to fear of rejection.

However, she eventually discovers that with Hirotaka, she can be whoever she wants to be. It’s almost impossible to find a good romance anime with adult themes and an adult cast, but Wotakoi captures the mundane nature of life and how even adults, at times, can feel like high schoolers when it comes to love. The way the show follows the different stages of the relationships between the four main characters is truly an experience that spans them as both friends and lovers.

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