AnnaSartin's avatar


  • Cincinnati, Ohio USA
  • Joined Aug 31, 2014
  • ? / F

You Sure This Is Shoujo?

Shoujo manga tends to have a reputation for telling the same kind of stories over and over - romances, magical girls, cute animals, fujobait involving a cast of hot guys (often flocking around a hapless female lead), and slice-of-life series starring characters doing mundane things. They tend to be full of fluff or melodrama, and are generally low on violence. But not every shoujo title fits into the "usual" categories meant for teenage girls. This list features atypical titles that you probably wouldn't guess ran in a shoujo magazine.
1 Attack on Titan: No Regrets

Attack on Titan: No Regrets

When one thinks 'shoujo', pretty sure nobody's first thought is Attack On Titan. 

2 Attack on Titan: No Regrets - Prologue

Attack on Titan: No Regrets - Prologue

See above.

3 Banana Fish

Banana Fish

Gangs, violence, drugs, and a whole lot of tragedy. Not something most parents would think is the perfect thing to put in the hands of younger teen and tween girls.

4 Bloody Mary (Akaza SAMAMIYA)

Bloody Mary (Akaza SAMAMIYA)

Just reads like a typical vampire manga. The (extremely) light BL elements are barely noticeable, to the point that many readers don't consider it to be part of the genre at all.

5 Children of the Whales

Children of the Whales

An epic fantasy that people would never guess is shoujo. The characters are not trope-ish in the least, and the creative world-building coupled with excellent art make it a worthy read.

6 Kase-san and Yamada

Kase-san and Yamada

A lesbian relationship between adults is usually marketed for a male audience. Props to Wings magazine for recognizing that actual lesbians might want to read girls-love stories, too. I would have expected a josei mag before shoujo, though.

7 Natsume's Book of Friends

Natsume's Book of Friends

Episodic youkai series in the same vein as seinen-style supernatural manga like Mokke and Mushishi, or the shounen series The Morose Mononokean (which also feels more like a general supernatural series than shounen).

8 The Seven Deadly Sins Production

The Seven Deadly Sins Production

An AU manga of an extremely well-known shounen series running in a shoujo mag. Why? I don't know. Because reasons?

9 X/1999


Nothing about this action-heavy apocalypse series screams 'shoujo'. Especially gory beheadings.

10 Yona of the Dawn

Yona of the Dawn

Starts out shoujo-ish with a princess seeking out a group of handsome male protectors. But Yona, the reincarnation of the powerful Crimson Dragon King, soon morphs from a damsel in distress to a young woman determined to learn how to protect herself and survive. The politics and battles of this fantasy are on par with similar pseudo-historical fiction in shounen magazines and is a great example of what shoujo can be when it breaks free of trope trappings and focuses on quality writing and world-building.


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