55 CommentsHopefully Humorous / By Scamp /

Does this anime have BL in it?

Owari no Seraph - 03 - Large 27The anime viewer must always remain vigilant against two letters: L and B. No, not Little Busters, although you definitely shouldn’t watch that either. It’s BL, the horrific, sudden, and irreversible discovery that the new anime you have picked up turns out to have been a Boys Love anime. With gay people. Sometimes kissing. Or at least this is the impression you can come across sometimes if you hang around anime discussion forums online. It crops up frequently where someone will post an honest question as to whether this anime is BL and therefore should they stay away from it. The most recent anime I’ve seen a recipient of this is for Seraph of the End because one boy hugs another boy at some point in it. I’ve seen this enough times by now that I feel it’s worth tackling.

Ore Monogatari - 03 - Large 29Firstly, let’s consider the worst case scenario. You are watching an anime and then suddenly a man is sticking his dick into another man’s anus. We’re talking full on fangirl fantasies (leaving aside the fact that gay people actually are real people and not just fangirl fantasies, which isn’t something most BL material even take into account, but that’s a separate issue). If we take the past 5 years as an example, there have been a grand total of 3 anime in this category. Sekai Ichi Hatsukoi, Sekai Ichi Hatsukoi 2 and Love Stage. There’s been a few ones adapted from BL material or hints at romance like Betrayal Knows My Name and Togainu no Chi, but you won’t suddenly witness Gay happening on screen. If you start including OVA material like Sex Pistols then you might get 4-5 more, but if you start to include OVAs I feel it’s worth pointing out that you are statistically more likely to watch a futanari anime than an actual gay anime OVA (no really, I did the research, and now have “futanari anime from past 5 years” in my search history).

In short, your fear of accidentally stumbling across Gay is founded on such a minor risk that it’s silly to even worry about that happening. But what about the Gay that’s not openly buggering but more minor things. Like two guys kissing. That can happen more often. It happens in No. 6, From the New World, and more recently Yamada-kun and the 7 Witches. Heck even Naruto had two dudes kiss at some point. So what do you do about that eh? How do you avoid seeing that without remaining vigilant? Tell me Scamp, how do I avoid the Gay!?!

tumblr_mdt6mslY9f1qdiq9mo1_1280To which I say “so what”? What will happen if you view the Gay? Is your masculinity so in danger that one viewing of the Gay may mean it all suddenly spews out your backside, leaving you a hollow shell afterwards where your voice goes high and balls disappear inside your body? Are you so insecure of your own hetrosexuality that witnessing two anime guys hugging will send your sexuality straight over to the homo side and next week you find yourself sucking dick wondering where it all went wrong? Will you viewing a man and another man love each other be etched so sharply into your facial features that everyone in school will know you watched Gay Cartoons and you will be shunned forever more?

I know I am probably preaching to the converted here and the intended audience are probably too busy checking to see if they have finally grown hair on their bollocks yet. But just in case you are one of those people, I’m here to tell you don’t worry, I was like that once too. I was a dumb teenage boy who went “eww gays” and was afraid an anime might suddenly ambush me with buttsex. To those people, I hope that this post gets through to a few of them and they realise how dumb they are being with this. You watch anime through your eyes, not your urethra. Hopefully they will learn to move on with their lives and not live in fear anymore. Face down this creature and realise that it is not frightening and probably quite enjoyable as an exploration of different relationships people can have with each other, until you come out the other side a happier person living a more fulfilling life.

…unless someone recommends you Boku no Pico. You should probably stay wary of that recommendation.

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  1. Posted April 25, 2015 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    Boku no Pico is the Citizen Kane of anime so, yes, people should be wary of it lest they watch it and not comprehend its greatness.

    • Posted April 26, 2015 at 12:15 am | Permalink

      Shounen Maid Kuro-Kun is the Lady from Shanghai of anime.

  2. Joel Townsend
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

    When I was 14 I thought gay people were creepy until I discovered that I fancied a guy. Then nothing bad happened as a result :)

  3. Leo
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

    “You are watching an anime and then suddenly a man is sticking his dick into another man’s anus.”

    Oh boy, it would be great if that happened in some popular show. It would be like Guillotine Gorilla all over again.

    • Gan_HOPE326
      Posted April 25, 2015 at 9:46 pm | Permalink

      Buttsex Baboon!

      • Scamp
        Posted April 28, 2015 at 10:25 am | Permalink

        Now I want this to happen to I can use the phrase Buttsex Baboon

    • TheVoid
      Posted April 26, 2015 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

      Well Masayoshi learned what love is when he confessed to Goto in the final episode.

  4. Gan_HOPE326
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 9:56 pm | Permalink

    I actually don’t think I’ve EVER accidentally stumbled upon male gay characters in anime in years. Even when it would have made sense. You mention Naruto and the infamous Naruto-Sasuke kiss but what that series didn’t really have the courage to state fully was how Zabuza and Haku CLEARLY were a gay couple (yeah, that adds another layer of creepy since Haku was obviously a minor but hey, after all the guys went around hacking people to pieces for a living, another thing minors really are not supposed to do. And so did our heroic protagonists, by the way).

    The only anime I can remember seeing male gay relationship addressed in is From the New World, and I had heard about it beforehand. There’s the Tomoda episode from Nozaki-kun, but the thing is he’s a fictional character even in-universe. And there’s Utena where nothing is spelled out but boys commonly strike fabulous poses together in bed or on a car while shirtless and surrounded by sparkles.

    I suppose random BL for shock’s sake or fujoshi fanservice would annoy me as all shock value writing or badly inserted fanservice is wont to do, but I’d be actually curious about an anime with a good treatment of the subject. From the New World was pretty good at it (though technically everyone was bi, there).

    • Kiraly
      Posted April 27, 2015 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

      I was watching some old series last summer and actually stumbled across surprise gay (bedroom scene and all) in the most unlikely series -an obscure shonen romantic comedy from 1999 called Tenshi ni narumon.

  5. DarkEnergy
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

    This is a great post.

  6. Mr. Anon
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    To be fair, with a lot of anime having ‘slightly sexually stimulating’ as their primary selling points, getting BL in your terrible anime when that’s not what you’re into for your terrible anime is pretty disappointing. Here you are trying to watch a dozen cute girls gush over a blank slate protagonist designed only so you can self-insert to the fullest extent and stroke your fantasies/ego/penis, when suddenly another guy inserts himself into the protagonist i.e. you. Traumatic, really.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 28, 2015 at 10:27 am | Permalink

      See, this I can actually kinda understand. If you’re watching an anime because you want to be turned on, then Gay will turn straight people off. It’s like watching porn and suddenly gay buttsex. It’s such a goddamn limited way of looking at anime but I suppose you’re right that a number of anime have sexual stimulation as their main draw.

  7. Night Knight
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

    The Gay? That sounds like a boogeyman dreamt up by some far-right conservatives.

    Hides your kids! Hide your wife! The Gay is coming! The Gay is coming!

  8. Erif
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 10:21 pm | Permalink

    god bless you scamp.

    also more posts like this plz

  9. Varyn
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 10:47 pm | Permalink

    Did anyone seriously stop watching Shinsekai Yori because of the gay stuff, they missed out bigtime, love that show and even the gay stuff was super interesting as part of the shows messed up culture.

    On the subject of gay stuff, am I the only one who finds the gay subtext in Oregairu hilarious?

    Also yeah real gay characters in anime are pretty sparse, even in bl, to the point that the only openly gay character I can think of is the guy from yaranaika.

    • fifteenth
      Posted April 26, 2015 at 6:36 am | Permalink

      No, you aren’t, lots of people on MAL find it hilarious.

      I’m watching SNAFU S1 recently because someone recommendes it as oh-so-not-like-the-other-romcom and seeing Saika’s gender and Hachiman’s supposedly confused attraction to him as butt of the joke ruined the show for me. I’ll eat my hat if his crush to Saika actually go somewhere and Yui/Yukino is the end game.

  10. lmm
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

    >Are you so insecure of your own hetrosexuality that witnessing two anime guys hugging will send your sexuality straight over to the homo side and next week you find yourself sucking dick wondering where it all went wrong?

    Yes. Togainu no Chi was a pretty close call. I spent the next month worried I would find myself in a fight club getting beaten up and then sucking blood and/or dick and knowing exactly where it all went wrong.

    Seriously if you don’t like particular content why not ask about it? I’m glad I was told Deadman Wonderland had an eye scene so I could not watch it. I wish someone had told me Kimi ni Todoke was going to go 26 episodes and not even have so much as a kiss, so I wouldn’t have wasted my time.

    Animé is something I do for fun, something to get away from politics. If you’re someone who finds boys kissing to be icky, in real life you probably have to just deal because it would be unfair to them to do otherwise. But if you want to avoid it in your animé then that doesn’t hurt anyone.

    • Gan_HOPE326
      Posted April 26, 2015 at 9:12 am | Permalink

      Yeah but that doesn’t change that if you are someone who find boys kissing to be icky you probably have problems. It’s like being allergic to strawberries. You can have stuff without strawberries, but if there was a way to stop being allergic and enjoy stuff with strawberries too, that’d be better for you too.

    • Baphomet
      Posted April 26, 2015 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

      Finding boys kissing icky is perfectly normal. The problem starts when you’re being immature and vocal about it.

      • Posted April 27, 2015 at 9:35 am | Permalink

        Maybe think about that statement a bit.

    • Posted April 27, 2015 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

      It seems you missed the point of the article by several country miles.

  11. Posted April 25, 2015 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

    … And then they miss out on such awesome things like Samurai Flamenco or Jojos, just because they have manly men bonding in them.
    Reminds me a bit about people that don’t want to watch the nice fanservice animays only because they have tits and panties in them,so they won’t touch Mine Fujiko, Junketsu no Maria or Kill la Kill.
    I prefer series with homoservice than regular yaois anyway, since when there’s only tension between the guys at least there won’t be rape. Love by rape is one of my most hated tropes and, unfortunately, it is very popular in the animated BL titles. I dislike it so much that I only recently realised that I don’t like series about lesbians either, but it’s only because they are boring, not offensive in any way. I was even interested in Love Stage before it started airing, since I liked the bit of the manga I tried and I like crossdressers, but then a friend warned me that there’s rape in about 2nd or 3rd episode as well. Blah.
    at least in Pico X Coco X Chico everything was consensual!

    • Scamp
      Posted April 28, 2015 at 10:29 am | Permalink

      I swear love by rape is the only trope in actual yaoi anime. The genre might be very diverse but not so much in the ones adapted to anime.

  12. arcanes
    Posted April 25, 2015 at 11:56 pm | Permalink

    Honestly I don’t really care that a random dude doesn’t want to watch a show because it contains BL or some shit. I don’t come here to educate anyone. I come here because I love anime and posts like this one. Someone doesn’t want to watch a good anime because it contains BL? his loss. And let’s face it – most people are dumb.

  13. MusubiKazesaru
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 12:25 am | Permalink

    Some anime are worth powering through it. Shin Sekai Yori for instance turned out to be one of the best anime I’ve ever seen and there’s that shit in episode 7. Others like Yamada-kun use it for laughs and don’t really focus on it like it matters or in Yahari Hatchiman’s crush of sorts on Totsuka just plays with the whole trap thing and winds up funny.

    I wouldn’t call any of those BL and I don’t go out of my way to watch BL, in fact I avoid it, but it’s hard to say where I draw the like, I tend to research the shows I watch somewhat so that I don’t end up watching crap to begin with and that tends to be enough for me.

  14. aelthelwulf
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 2:21 am | Permalink

    First of all, this is a great post! I hope it reaches the part of the fandom that needs it most. Also, thank you for using the correct classification term (BL rather than yaoi)!

    I think this is also a good time to pull out and wave the double standards flag. You generally don’t see the fanbase posting furious anti-yuri/anti-girl’s love comments whenever there’s a girl-on-girl boob-groping scene in the generic harem anime of the season. It seems to me that GL hints (female students gushing over oneesama-sempais, cute girls doing unusually cute things *together*) have been internalized by the overall fandom as being “normal” and not something to object to (it’s not uncommon to see GL stuff in shojo anime, even) One day, hopefully, BL hints will be treated the same.

    • quantumrei
      Posted April 26, 2015 at 7:57 pm | Permalink

      Even worse, it seems to be regarded as more acceptable the younger the anime girls are. I doubt two adult lesbians in anime will be looked at in the same light as, say, the girls from Yuru Yuri. Especially if said adults do not in any way act innocent about it.

  15. Insem
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 3:11 am | Permalink

    I can stand the gay as long as there’s no tongue involved. But once shit gets sloppy, that’s my cue to get the hell out of there.

  16. Kioku from Laptop
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 3:41 am | Permalink

    Love Stage. You should all drop what you’re doing and watch it. Funniest BL show I’ve seen.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 28, 2015 at 10:35 am | Permalink

      Doesn’t it have rape = love in it though? I’m all for championing the gay but I aint watching no rape story.

      • Raiphin
        Posted April 29, 2015 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

        It…well, no actual rape takes place. There’s an instances of attempted sexual assault at the beginning but the result is the uke crying and the seme feeling confused/awful, stopping, running away, and then spending a few episodes apologizing for it.

  17. Posted April 26, 2015 at 4:19 am | Permalink

    Thanks for this. I just had to chew out fucking AidanAK47, the dude running psgels’ blog now, for totally writing off an anime in a preview solely for the fact that it maybe hinted at gay undertones. Sigh. Who knew there was so much homophobia in an entertainment medium marketed towards undersexed manchildren? Oh. Wait. No, that makes sense.

    • Posted April 28, 2015 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

      But to him if it’s a lesbian gamer, then it’s all good. Classic hypocrisy.

  18. Nagisa33
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 5:13 am | Permalink

    Thank you for this post. I appreciate it.

  19. Wodes
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 6:39 am | Permalink

    “You watch anime through your eyes, not your urethra.”
    Highschool DxD begs to differ.

    On a serious note though, although I personally don’t have a problem with homosexuality in my anime (or in life), it’s still legitimate for people to ask for what kind of content is in a show. I haven’t watched silver spoon, for example, because as a vegan I don’t want to watch a show that tries to legitimize killing animals. Is that irrational? absolutely, and I’m probably missing out on a great show because of it. But it would make me uncomfortable to watch it. Another example would be a show that has rape or domestic violence in it, someone would be within their rights to not to watch a show because graphic depictions of rape or domestic violence are upsetting to them (especially so if they have been victims of or have had a loved one be a victim of said acts). Now obviously not wanting to watch two guys making out isn’t anywhere near as serious as being triggered by a rape scene, but as entertainment I think it’s well within people’s bounds to avoid things that make them uncomfortable.

    • Gan_HOPE326
      Posted April 27, 2015 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

      Everyone has the right to do that of course, especially with entertainment, but I think the habit of always shying away of anything that makes us “uncomfortable” is actually harmful for our intellectual development. Things that make us uncomfortable because they express points of view radically different from ours are good because they mean chances to question our beliefs – and through questioning them, either change them or strenghten them. Silver Spoon spends a great deal of time debating the issue of animal killing and does so in an intelligent way, not just waving away the issue with “oh well humans eat animals because that’s how things are”. As an omnivore, I wouldn’t be scared of watching a story about veganism; if smartly done, it would definitely give me food for thought. Even things that I consider morally deeply wrong can still interest me in fictional form. I am a pacifist and found Robert Henlein’s “Starship Troopers” a great book for the insight it gave into how the military thinks and works. “The woodsman” is an excellent movie – about a pedophile. Even if we’re talking nazism and fascism, “understanding” is often more useful and important than just keeping ourselves pure by contact with such concepts. If you have convictions of your ideas, seeing different ones won’t shake them and will instead give you more perspective and tools to interpret the world. That is all the more true if we’re talking about homosexuality, where there really is no rational reason to consider it morally bankrupt as any of the things above (I eat meat but I am definitely ready to admit there’s an ethical problem to be debated about animal killing, about homosexuality not so much).

    • Scamp
      Posted April 28, 2015 at 10:38 am | Permalink

      I get what you’re saying, and my response and the point of this post is that if you are afraid of watching an anime because two guys hug each other in it then you are being so incredibly dumb about it.

  20. Mormegil
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    “Firstly, let’s consider the worst case scenario. You are watching an anime and then suddenly a man is sticking his dick into another man’s anus.”

    Well, that escalated quickly!

    I will never forget the great shitstorm(one of the many) on MAL when tons of people ACTUALLY dropped From the New World because of the two dudes kissing. Not to mention that it was equal opportunity, since the two girls were making out with one another. Their loss on missing out on a great anime because of that one scene.

    Did people stop watching The Wire when Omar turned out to be gay?

  21. Jaysus
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 8:52 am | Permalink

    There was eating of “yaoi sticks” in Koi to Senkyo to Chocolate.

    Damn you for making me remember that anime.

  22. Shikamaru
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    I remember dropping No. 6 because it was starting to get too gay. Then comes year 2014 and Love Stage!! and I absolutely loved it. Really entertaining, funny and heartwarming yaoi romcom series. So yeah, definitely not a problem for me anymore.

    Great post by the way.

    And Little Busters was a great anime.

  23. TheVoid
    Posted April 26, 2015 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    I thought BL stood for Bacon Lettuce.

    • Kioku from Laptop
      Posted April 26, 2015 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

      Because FUCK Tomato? Apologies to any tomato lovers out there. :)

    • Night Knight
      Posted April 28, 2015 at 4:54 am | Permalink

      To be fair, I think that’s the alternate ship name for ShizuoxIzaya.

  24. Posted April 26, 2015 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

    I have someone on my twitter who posts and retweets gay stuff all the time so I’ve gotten pretty used to it.

  25. Maxulous
    Posted April 27, 2015 at 3:21 am | Permalink

    Class homework: Everyone watch Kaze to ki no Uta.

    • VelvetAsite
      Posted April 27, 2015 at 4:10 am | Permalink

      I know what I’m watching tonight!

  26. Ze Toshiest
    Posted April 27, 2015 at 5:13 am | Permalink

    I once fought the Gay, and the Gay won. Now I’m able to browse Jojo fanart for hours at a time and offer legitimate opinions on delusion-driven pairings without clearing my comment history every five minutes.

    Thanks, the Gay.

  27. mikeRx
    Posted April 27, 2015 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    While we’re on the subject of The Gay, everyone should go check out the works of Gengoroh Tagame. I’d love to see THAT kind of gayness in an anime, not the bishounen with flowers and sparkles dancing around them.

    • Maxulous
      Posted April 27, 2015 at 11:36 am | Permalink

      That’s certainly next level.

  28. The Big Guy
    Posted April 27, 2015 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

    Fun (?) story: I always wander into shounen-ai type shows (not yaoi) without realizing it’s gay because they usually have a cute blonde girl in them. Examples include Gankutsuou (Albert, you should stay with your hot fiancee rather than going for the Smurf!) Nabari No Ou (with a blonde girl with twin tails) and most recently Owari No Seraph (though I like Shinoa’s snark more). Then I’m inevitably disappointed when the main guys get together in the end. Not sure if that’s relevant, but it’s just funny to me how I’m easily fooled…

  29. quantumrei
    Posted April 27, 2015 at 11:29 pm | Permalink

    I was reading this out loud to my friend and she laughed at “face down”

  30. Ken
    Posted April 28, 2015 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

    Great article!

    I think more and more people are gradually getting used to seeing same sex relationships being depicted in media, and it’s a good thing. And not just in anime but on shows like Game of Thrones and even the Legend of Korra with Korra herself ending up in a same sex relationship. (By the way, I think the Legend of Korra series is one of the best animated series ever.)

    I confess that years ago I was 100% homophobic, but now after being exposed to a diverse world, I’ve come to realize that every form of consensual love should be respected openly. And if people don’t like it, well eventually they will have to get over it. And if your church doesn’t like it, then maybe your going to the wrong church.

  31. KBKarma
    Posted April 29, 2015 at 12:49 am | Permalink

    Out of curiosity, did this post have anything to do with the Marriage Referendum on the 22nd May?

    On topic, I have no problems with homosexuality depicted on screen or in books. I’m soppy and romantic at times, and will go “Awwww” if there’s an actual loving relationship being depicted, never mind the sex of the participants.

    That being said… I dropped No. 6, not because of the homosexual overtones, but because it just seemed shit. Specifically, I missed a few episodes, then read your posts on them, and decided that it wasn’t worth the pain.

  32. Lali
    Posted March 4, 2016 at 11:43 pm | Permalink

    Who are the guys from the third picture? \(0.0)/ Anyone know?

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  • […] organizers are pretty controlling since Yaoi is such a sensitive topic within the community. Read Scamp’s take on BL in Anime and just see how some people in the Anime community are such homophobic bigots […]

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