Yaoi Recommendations (Part 3) – Mature Content Anime & Manga

yaoi3

I’m going to be posting recommendations in groups of three in clusters that share similar themes or ratings. This third group is all more explicit and features mature content. These three also all feature short OVAs, but extended stories featured in manga form. These do carry a mature content warnings or possibly triggery content. I will break down the content warnings per series so that you know what you’re getting into with each one.

Fake (Anime OVA & Manga)

This was the first explicit Yaoi I’d ever read. When I started lending this series to friends in high school I became known as the ‘Yaoi Dealer,’ which is a title I was pretty proud of. As I went to a pretty conservative school, it was a risky game, but I’m happy that I at least got to spread the love of Yaoi among my fellow anime and manga fans. Though the manga is more explicit, it still has the magical floating white orbs over all the naughty bits, so it’s most intense scenes are still a hair shy of being considered pornography. Still, this is a mature story not only for the near pornographic scenes, but for the violence, crime, and abuse present throughout the narrative. There’s also moments that could be considered dubious consent, but for our main pairing we are given a look inside their heads and it’s made clear that everything is consensual for both parties involved.  One of the characters is struggling to come to terms with his own sexuality and feelings through a lot of the story, but there is nothing non-consensual about their interactions.

Fake3The OVA is actually my least favorite story from the manga and not nearly as explicit, but it’s still a nice slice of their relationship. I would, however, highly recommend the manga series over the OVA. The manga is a slow burn romance. The series revolves around two NYPD detectives, Dee and Ryo. Dee is very outgoing, firmly bisexual with no shame, and fiercely loyal to those he considers family. Ryo is a bit more reserved, unsure of his own sexuality, but still a badass cop that will go all out to get the job done.  Dee is immediately attracted to Ryo, and Ryo’s own uncertainty, but budding feelings for his partner create an incredibly touching relationship.

Another thing that makes this manga stand out is Dee’s constant insistence that he’s bisexual.  He likes both men and women and doesn’t hesitate to correct people when they assume that he likes only one or the other.  It’s refreshing because most stories make sexuality something that needs to be inferred simply by observing who the character is sleeping with, but that’s not the case here.  Dee’s straightforwardness and confidence in himself means that everyone knows exactly who he is.  As a bisexual myself, this personality trait is something I admire about Dee.  I don’t always like how pushy he can be with Ryo, but his insistence on making sure his own sexuality isn’t misinterpreted gives him some points in my book.

Fake will always hold a special place in my heart for being the ‘first’ of the genre for me, but also for creating a pairing that stuck with me for many years even after I (temporarily) fell out of anime fandom and moved onto other media.  It ranks very high on my list of OTPs.

Vassalord (Anime OVA & Manga)

Who doesn’t love vampires? How about a cyborg vampire with a cyborg dog? What if that cyborg vampire had complex feelings over his super sexy and sassy vampire master? That, my friends, is Vassalord. The OVA covers the first story, which isn’t very heavily yaoi oriented, though you can definitely tell the two share deeper feelings for one another than what’s portrayed on screen. The feeding scenes are rather erotic, but that’s the case with most vampire fiction really. The manga does feature a sex scene, though, even if all the bits are conveniently hidden.  For that reason, this recommendation is being categorized as mature.  There is also violence and gore because, hey, this is a piece of vampire fiction after all.  That goes with the territory.

vassalordThe cyborg vampire, Chris, has deep religious feelings and starts off with an ambiguous love/hate relationship with his creator Rayflo. His first introduction is stabbing Rayflo from behind and ripping him in half, which Rayflo recovers from quite easily. A few pages later Chris is feeding from Rayflo and it’s revealed that this is a regular occurrence for them. Chris refuses to drink from anybody other than his creator due to his faith in God and unwillingness to hurt other people.  This scene is portrayed in both the OVA and the manga, but due to the OVA’s brevity we really don’t get a sense for the depth of their relationship or just how long interactions like this have been going on between them.  Their love for one another is deep, but the OVA barely scratches the surface.

The two also have adorable nicknames for each other, which makes this whole introduction scene even more hilariously off kilter. Rayflo calls Chris “Cherry” and Chris calls Rayflo “Master.” The interesting thing with this relationship is that we’re jumping into it after well over a century of interaction between them, so how they got to this point is revealed via dialogue and flashbacks in the manga.  We aren’t seeing a new relationship blossom, but rather an already existing relationship strengthen.  Going forward they grow even closer than they ever have been before as they fight against a common enemy that threatens both of their lives.

They are one of those couples that balances each other out due to their different, but complementary personalities. I adore Cherry/Master and wish the manga would continue. At the moment it’s 53 chapters long and has an incredibly fleshed out story that kept me glued to the pages for several days. I highly recommend this manga.  It’s an intense story, deep relationship, and well fleshed out mythology that’ll suck you in very quickly.

Koisuru Boukun (Anime OVA & Manga)

This comes with a heavy content warning non-consensual and dubiously-consensual sex. The first mature scene between the main pairing can be strongly classified as non-con, though later in the series it can be interpreted as more dub-con once you understand the character’s thought process. As the series progresses in the manga their relationship becomes obviously consensual, but the first encounter involves one of the characters simply not being able to stop himself even though the other party says no. Non-consensual sex is a terrible plot device and this would usually make me back out of a series right away, but something about the rest of premise made me want to stick around. What I experienced was an extremely complex, strangely touching, yet seriously conflicting relationship.  While this does land itself on my recommendation list, it does so very hesitantly due to the initial encounter between the two characters.

KBSouichi, also called “Senpai,” is a raging homophobe whose younger brother moved off away to the US with his boyfriend. This enrages Souichi even more and makes his rants about homosexuality even more explosive.  Souichi’s grad student lab assistant, Morinaga, is hopelessly in love with him, despite his overtly homophobic ways. Morinaga confesses his love to him a year prior to the start of the series (this happens in the series called ‘Challengers’ which this series is actually a spin off from), but Souichi basically ignores it and chooses to keep Morinaga on as his assistant. This confuses Morinaga because Souichi’s hatred of homosexuality is pretty much his most defining feature, but Morinaga sticks around anyway while keeping his unrequited for his Senpai pushed to the back of his mind. They’re a great team in the lab and Morinaga is basically the only person who can stand to be around Souichi, so they’re pretty much as close as you can get professionally and platonically when you put Morinaga’s romantic feelings for him aside.

Early in the series Souichi accidentally gets dosed with a drug, which while not explicitly Morinaga’s fault and not done maliciously, still results in Morinaga taking advantage of the situation. Morinaga runs away after the fact, feeling incredibly guilty for pushing Souichi. He recognizes that what he did was pretty awful at least, which is good, but that does not remotely excuse his behavior. However, Souichi has an inner crisis during Morinaga’s absence as he realizes he needs him in his life more than he ever realized. His extreme homophobia doesn’t allow him to accept these feelings as love, but without labeling them as such, that’s basically what it is. His slow realization about his feelings towards Morinaga is my favorite part of this series and why it made it on this rec list despite the horribly non-con start to their relationship.

The two OVA’s are the start of the manga series and their relationship only grows deeper from there. Souichi does a lot of soul searching about his strong emotional attachment towards Morinaga and how it conflicts with his deep hatred of homosexuality. It’s that conflict that made this series so interesting to me and pushed me to get past the original sex scene that stands so awkwardly on the corner of non-con and dub-con. The idea that an extreme homophobe could fall in love with his male friend makes for an interesting drama. The OVA is a good start, but the real reward come with the manga.  You get a better look into Souichi’s thought process and his slow realization that he’s in love with a man, despite his hatred of homosexuality.  It’s a very complex narrative that I highly recommend with an extreme amount of caution.

That’s it for this installment. Stay tuned for more recs!

YAOI RECOMMENDATIONS MASTERPOST

Author: Angel

Angel is the admin of The Geekiary and a geek culture commentator. She earned a BA in Film & Digital Media from UC Santa Cruz. She’s contributed to various podcasts and webcasts including An Englishman in San Diego, Free to Be Radio, and Genre TV for All. She’s written for Friends of Comic Con and has essays published in Fandom Frontlines.

-



**Read our policies before commenting.**

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube.
Please do not copy our content in whole to other websites. Linkbacks are encouraged.