Shounen Romance Rules

After writing those “Action “Shounen Rules, I am writing another part of the “shounen cliche” series: Shounen Romance. (Harem included)

Now, I think about it. Valentines is also coming up. So, this is a great topic for the season.

I really don’t know which series set the bars, but in my manga reading experience.. the oldest one I’ve read is I”s a great manga by Masakazu Katsura, and is the post header image.

Ok, I know this is not complete. I may have forgotten or doesn’t know some things, feel free to comment for corrections and/or additions.

Note: First draft is an emphasis to the characters first. Will add more in the near future.

Edit: Kinda started the plotlines part, and edited some of the grammar mistakes I can find.

1. Main guy = useless

Mostly found in shounen romance genre but not limited to.

Main guys are usually weak guys that has 16 years of girlfriendless experience. Usually not handsome enough for the main girl. Sucks at studying. Sucks at sports. In some cases, is a delinquent.

2. Main Girl = goddess

The main girl is Ms. Perfect. end.

3. The Main guy’s best friends character types

The characters for the main guy’s best friends is always limited to two character types.

First one is a girlfriendless guy like himself that has a huge girl database. usually fugly, and is always treated as a pervert. Another childhood friend.

Second one is the bishie, or the sports-star. The guys who got all the girls and all the stuff, brains, looks, and athleticism. Usually became friends with the main guy because of a favor done by the main guy.

Some cases, the guy’s bestfriend is just a bishie/sports-star with good grades, athleticism, and is a playboy, then add the girl database.

3. The Girls

I know there’s a pie chart for this one, not sure, but I think the trend started from Love Hina.

Shounen Romance usually has at least 3 girls. Childhood Friend, Mysterious Girl, and another one (either another childhood friend or another classmate)

* Childhood friend

The strongest contender for the main guys heart. usually a tsundere.

there are some cases where the childhood friend loses too, like Minamoto Yui of Ichigo 100% (a mix of childhood friend+little sister+kouhai)

* Mysterious Girl

Second strong contender for the main guy. She’s a character that came from nowhere, and suddenly attracts the main guy and eats his guts gets to keep him. can be a robot, alien, space pirate or a third life form.

* Princess

Third ranking. Is a real princess from a certain country, world, universe, etc. But this also applies to rich girls, and school madonnas/idols. Iori from I”s is a notable example.

* Underclassman

Provides the moe stuff. has bonuses if the main guy is a pedo. Always sticks around the main character

Little sister can be under this class too. Little sisters can be pesky, the stick to the main guy only finding out that your both not related by blood. (Well, there are extreme cases too.)

* Upperclassman

Where the main guy usually gets advice or is a leaning arm. Usually big-boobed. One of the main guy’s bestfriends

Elder sisters and Mature Women also fall under this category.

Characters under this category must be strong to pick up the main guy when he falls down.

* Girl Next Door

A very dangerous character. The girl who usually swipes the main guy in mere seconds.

Usually normal, average, innocent but is part of the plot of the main guy’s downfall.

And here are “Special categories” that can be mixed in the main categories

* dumb girl/bimbo

a special category that can be mixed other categories except to childhood friend, mysterious girl and princess.

provides comic relief. usually not romantically linked to the main character.usually big-boobedXD

* weak girl

can be applied to all categories except to upperclassmen and mature women

Either sick physically, emotionally or socially. usually another underclassman/little sister. some cases, main girl (like in Key/Visual Arts works)

Nerds can be in this area too.

* tsundere

go wiki

* reverse trap

a character that appears later in the series, captivated by the main guy, shows her feminine side.

* foreigner

do I need to explain? can be tied to bimbos as well.

* loli character

in Modern Shounen romance a harem must have a loli character. Age doesn’t matter, as long as that character has loli features, it fine.

This must be part of the marketing… yes, marketing. A CONSPIRACY!

4. Usually starts in a high school setting

Shounen romance are usually set in high school. The age of chocolates, letters in shoeboxes, meet in the courtyard and rooftop romance.

5. Basic Plot Flow

Shounen romance’s basic plot flow is this:

Courting-> Couple-> Breakup-> Repeat

6. New Arc, New Girl (Guy)

Unlike action shounen where new arc means new powers and a new enemy, in shounen romance, the main guy and the main girl breaks up after an arc due to a new girl(some cases, guy) appearing to mess up their life. example is Suzuka, where after Yamato sort of broke up with Suzuka, a new girl appears!

7. Yesterday’s love rivals are still tomorrow’s love rivals

except that, the hostility between the girls is gone. Instead of fighting it physically and emotionally, they go with the rules. (lunch boxes, going home and spending time). If you’re watching the Rosario+Vampire anime, the scenario there is an example.

8. The main guy usually joins the club where the main girl is at

the main guy joins the club or organization where the girl is at, like in Suzuka where, Yamato joined the track and field team where Suzuka is.

Some cases are accidental, like in Tokimeki Memorial Only Love, where Aoba is forced to join the Student Council.

9. The main guy suffers from indecisiveness

To many hot girls, gotta catch em ell.. is what a normal “healthy” guy is thinking.

But since the main guy can’t hurt a fly, he can’t pick a girl till the end of the series.

Notable example: Manaka from Ichigo 100%

9.5. Some cases, the main guy only sticks to the main girl. but, the other girl loves him so much they became old hags

in Ai Yori Aoshi, Kaoru’s emotions is only set for Aoi. Other girls are merely obstacles he must face.

10. The main guys always go for the wrong girl at the start

The main guy usually misunderstands his feelings and goes for the girl nearest to him. Like Yamato in Suzuka, where he goes for Honoka early (and later too!) in the series.

Some cases are accidental. Like Manaka confessing to Nishino in Ichigo 100%

Damn, unlike ACTION Shounen, it’s hard to write about rules about Shounen Romance. Plus, I’m also writing this based on my knowledge and limited references. I think I’ll strengthen this post after I get more.

Oh, btw.. the Post Header image is Iori Yoshizuki from I”s.

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5 Comments on “Shounen Romance Rules”

  1. xkawaii Says:

    Wow o:
    thats a real good Posts !
    Do you like Shounen?
    Personally, I’m more a Shoujo type but
    Im thinking of starting to read some Shounen,
    any Tips for good ones?
    Wel,, It would be fun if you came over to see my blog sometimes, See you later! (Perhaps 🙂 )

  2. sNooZe-kun Says:

    Personally, I don’t care from which genre I read/watch. As long it presents itself in an interesting way and moves me, I’m bound to read/watch it.

    I usually read more obscure series than main ones. so I don’t really much give tips on what series to get.

    But since you said you’re more inclined to the Shoujo genre, You might like the examples I gave above since all of those are centered to high school romance, though some of those feature mature content.

  3. Indurrago Says:

    I always wondered why I never realized this before but it feels like the archetypal male harem lead is the complete opposite of the archetypal male shounen action lead in terms of personality. One gains more character development than the other, has more balls(courage), and is generally more likeable because he actually accomplishes things, etc.. A unknown hot girl coming to you’re doorstep telling you she’s you’re wife is really cool but you really did nothing to cause that to happen(except maybe childhood memories from x many years). XD

  4. sNooZe-kun Says:

    Shounen Romance Main leads usually uses their courage in wrong time and places, and their character never really develop until the last moment.

    I pretty much noticed that main girls liked the the leads because of their past manliness, coolness etc without the lead knowing about it.

  5. Indurrago Says:

    “Shounen Romance Main leads usually uses their courage in wrong time and places, and their character never really develop until the last moment. ”

    Character development of the male lead in a harem anime is like watching a slug race more times than I want.

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