What’s Your Favourite Anime Genre?

There are so many genre within anime! I know that there seems to be a consensus that people who don’t watch anime assume it’s just all the same genre – but that’s definitely not true. I personally usually watch action, drama, psychological, post-apocalyptic and sports anime because that’s what I have found I enjoy. But there’s so many other genres!

Some of the most popular genre include:

Drama (such as Steins; Gate) – a narrative fictional piece that is intended to be more serious than humorous in its tone.

Fantasy (such as Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic) – a genre that features magical and supernatural elements that aren’t found in ‘real life.’

Slice of Life (such as Hyouka) – an anime genre that presents a realistic representation of everyday experiences. Check out my Recommend Me Slice of Life post for a deeper look into the genre.

Horror (such as Another) – a genre meant to scare, frighten or disgust its viewers.

Mystery (such as Erased) – a genre that follows a crime (usually a murder or disappearance) where the goal is to solve the crime.

Psychological thriller (such as Tokyo Ghoul) – a genre that combines the thriller and psychological fiction genres together. This genre usually deals with psychological narratives in a thrilling setting.

Demon (such as Blue Exorcist) – a genre that features demons.

Isekai (such as Sword Art Online) – a genre where a person is transported into a different world and has to survive in this new world.

Mecha (such as Darling in the Franxx) – a science-fiction genre that is centered around giant robots or machines that are controlled by people.

Harem (such as How Not to Summon a Demon Lord) – a genre where the main character is pursued by multiple people.

Yaoi (such as Given) – this genre is centered around the romantic/intimate relationship between two men (also known as boys’ love and its abbreviation BL).

Yuri (such as Maria Holic) – this genre is centered around the romantic/intimate relationship between two women (also known as girls’ love).

Post-Apocalyptic (such as Ergo Proxy) – this genre is set in a world post-disaster.

Shoujo (such as Blue Spring Ride) – this genre is targeted to the demographic of teenage girls. It usually features personal and romantic relationships.

Shounen (such as One Piece) – this genre is targeted to the demographic of teenage boys. It usually features action-filled plots.

Josei (such as Bunny Drop) – a genre that is targeted towards women’s interests. It’s marketed towards older teen girls and adult women (specifically those able to read kanji without the aid of furigana).

Kodomomuke (such as Doraemon) – a genre for children 10 years and under. This is a genre for children to teach morals within a self-contained story each episode.

Iyashikei (such as Gakkuen Babysitters) – a sub-genre of slice of life. This genre portrays characters living out peaceful lives in a calming environment. It is intended to have a ‘healing effect’ on its audience.

Ecchi (such as Yuragi-Sou no Yuuna-San) – a genre that is named after the Japanese slang used to describe playfully sexual actions. It means ‘sexy,’ ‘dirty’ or ‘naughty’ as an adjective, ‘to have sex’ as a verb, and ‘lascivious behaviour’ as a noun.

Seinen (such as March Comes in Like a Lion) – a genre that is named after the Japanese term meaning ‘youth.’ It is specifically targeted towards young adult men.

Sports (such as Kuroko’s Basketball) – a genre that focuses upon a sport. Usually it follows a team throughout their training, practices, matches, and tournaments.

What’s your favourite genre of anime? Was there any genre here you didn’t know of?

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Recommend Me Slice of Life Anime

I’ve never quite been a fan of the slice of life genre. I’m unsure why but the pastel colour scheme, character relationships, and plot lines never quite interested me.

‘Slice of life’ is defined as, “A realistic representation of everyday experience in a film, play, or book.” Notable slice of life anime include: Fruits Basket, Toradora!, Clannad, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, Anohana: The Flower we Saw that Day, K-On!, Love, Chunibyo and Other Delusions!, Hyouka and 5 Centimeters Per Second.

Slice of life anime is considered to be more like melodrama than drama, and usually makes use of a large number of dramatic and comedic moments in a short span of time. They are usually plotless and non-directional, which goes against what are considered fundamentals of engaging storytelling. Instead, they focus upon interpersonal relationships and how characters react to their surroundings and events. At the narrative centre of slice of life, there tends to an uneventful mundaneness.

Perhaps slice of life is too similar to the avant-garde style in the regards that there needs to be a certain appreciation, understanding and acceptance of it before one can really enjoy the medium. What I tend to find to be a lack of flow in narrative, mundane character chemistry and an unfulfilling repetitive lack of insight into characters’ psyches – another might love for a variety of reasons.

Slice of life is well adored for the relaxation it can provide viewers. The atmosphere itself of the series needs to be woven into an overall relaxing mood. There tends to be a lack of high stakes in this genre to achieve this feeling. No-one has to save the world or fight their way through an apocalypse, but rather there should be a lack of conflict to focus upon characters interpersonal relationships. As much as I appreciate a good character insight as much as the next person, I think I find character analysis to be much more engaging. While Hyouka I assume is, for many, a relaxing show to watch, I found it rather boring since the mysterious weren’t that complicated and the pace was too slow. These added a boring factor to the series for me, purposely then (I theorise) to highlight the main characters’ apathetic and ‘lazy’ attitude. I didn’t enjoy it until over halfway through the series, and even then, it was only for a few episodes where I found myself able to watch more than one in a row.

Incorporated into this relaxing atmosphere is usually also a simplistic colour scheme, limited animation, a rather basic score and simple character designs. For someone who’s favourite art style in an anime is something like Dorohedoro, you can probably tell my tastes don’t exactly tend to align much with the Fruits Basket aesthetic. Scores are important to me in anime as well – impressive musical accompaniment for anything heightens experiences for me. Grand plot points in series like Attack on Titan and Guilty Crown are elevated by Hiroyuki Sawano’s incredible compositions of epic pieces, and Akira’s heavily percussion-based soundtrack delivers a cold and chilling sound that enhances the sense of dystopia for viewers while watching. Without a noticeable soundtrack in slice of life anime and without a progressing plot, I can tend to get quite bored.

Finally, slice of life characters are the focus of their stories. Everything is centred around their personalities, motivations, dreams, hopes, choices and relationships. They are the ones who drive the story. The plot of a slice of life anime is considered secondary to how a character will deal with it. With such a major focus being on characters it’s important that they are relatable and that by extension, their struggles, thoughts and reactions are relatable. They are mostly put in situations where viewers can connect with them via universal experiences such as growing friendships. For me though, the few slice of life series I have watched contained very limited relatable characters. Hyouka only allowed me to relate to a maximum of one- or two-characters’ personality traits, and even then, it wasn’t much. Anohana though I did not enjoy at all. I watched it out of pure stubbornness. I did not cry. I see its appeal, but to be honest it is one of the worst pieces of media I had watched in a while when I saw it. How I was meant to cry in scenes poorly set up and executed due to bland writing, character development and personalities filled with a lack of either self-awareness, sensibleness or common sense from characters made me dislike the series and characters even more (I also don’t like when characters have overabundance of naivety – it annoys me too much and I can’t pinpoint why). But my experiences have been most likely skewed by my own personality so that’s on me.

This begs the question then, what do I like about the slice of life genre for my personal viewing? Well, I don’t know. Maybe these shows are actually more exciting than I realise, and I just haven’t been shown the right clips to pique my interest. Maybe there’s more plot than pitched in minute long trailers. Maybe I just haven’t watched the right series for me.

As a result of all of this I’m asking you now… please recommend me slice of life anime that I might like.   

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