As I sit here and look over my top ten list for 2007, I have to laugh. I’m not sure I know what I was thinking when I wrote it. lol But that’s okay, I can’t imagine why anyone would care what I think, anyway. So here goes:
10) Cream Lemon Escalation Light Novel
Yes, this book is 20 years old. But I only managed to read it this year, so here it is. Not only is this Light Novel chock full o’Yuri hentai, it’s the ancestor of several other notable Yuri series. Like a pervy grandfather alongside our grandmothers Yoshiya Nobuko and Ikeda Riyoko, this story shaped what we know and love as “Yuri” today.
9) Cutie Honey/Cutey Honey
Speaking of pervy grandfathers. This year saw the release of the awesome Cutie Honey a-GoGo Perfect Volume *and* the new Cutie Honey the Live TV show. And once again, Yuri abounds in this heap of pandering, fetishes and pervtasticness. It’s almost a challenge at this point – how low and horrid can this series go and still be loads of fun? I don’t know – I guess we’ll find out, won’t we? :-)
8) Strawberry Panic Light Novels and Drama CDs
One more for the how low can you go file. These novels were full of tortured metaphors and ridiculous handwaves (can you say private helicopters? I knew you could) – and the occasional sexy and sometimes even lovely moment. I still await their English debut from Seven Seas with bated breath because they are so laughably awful and I await the response of fandom even more as they bend reality to justify how good they *must* be, since we can never admit to just liking something that’s junk. lol And the Drama CDs are even worse! This grandchild of Escalation makes this list for the combination of wtf-ness and Yuri.
7) Kashimashi Girl Meets Girl
This is the last time I mention this, seriously. Both anime and manga came out in English this year, marking Media Blasters’ entry into the Yuri market, and continuing Seven Seas foray into yuri-ish manga. I really don’t love this series half as much as it might seem from its presence on all of this year’s lists, but it was well-adapted in all cases and it’s just a fluke of timing, mostly. lol Although I still wished Tomari and Yasuna ended up together, Kashimashi makes this year’s top ten at 7th.
6) Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS
I’m going to allow my biases to show for one moment – this is on this list for being conglomeration of many things that I like, as much as because I saw it as Yuri. StrikerS had adult women, in military uniform, kicking ass in pretty colors, all of which made it one of the best shows I watched this year.
5) Blue Drop
And gee…Blue Drop has women in (admittedly ugly) military uniforms, etc, etc. I’m consistent. I like soup to have nice chunky pieces of meat and veggies and I like women in uniform. And spaceships and battles…and Yuri. Since the Yuri in Blue Drop is more overt that that in StrikerS, it makes it onto the list at fourth. I really wish this series was longer – I’d happily watch it for as long as they wanted to show it to me.
The Megami magazine version didn’t do a thing for the mythos, but the Drama CD massively upped the “obvious” Yuri. And the anime, which I feared would not be adaptable and coherent, was extremely well handled by the folks at Media Blasters. And instead of downplaying the Yuri, they jumped right in and marketed it as Yuri, which makes them the first anime company to ever do that. Above all, the story remains brilliant, as does the art, the music and the characters. We can all look forward to more Simoun.
3) Maria-sama ga Miteru
The OAVs were fun, they were romantic, they were a very decent adaptation of the novels. The DJCDs and web radios massively pumped up the Yuri for fans’ enjoyment, and the novels…they are just full of love-love moments. I’m so far behind in reading them, that you’re going to have to hear about this series for a long time to come. :-) For Yumi and Sachiko, Rei and Yoshino, Tsutako and Shouko and Sei and everyone, lol, this series continues to make my top three for the year.
2) Yuri Hime and Yuri Hime S
Never before have so many artists, male and female, been gathered together to draw stories of girls (and women, sometimes) in love. Some of the best names in the industry, many who have been drawing Yuri/Girls Love/Onna x Onna manga for ages, are represented here. Yuri Hime, mostly by women who draw Yuri and Yuri Hime S, mostly men who draw Yuri, all drawing for us, the Yuri audience. Their collections are high quality and coming soon to western shores via Seven Seas, and I’m really looking forward to seeing them here. Because 8 times a year I get all excited to see what each new issue holds, Ichijinsha’s GL magazines are the second best Yuri of the year.
1) Iono-sama Fanatics
As I mentioned yesterday, I still find it incredible that Infinity is translating this. But even more so, how fantastic that second, final volume is, with its silly epilogue, fashionable clothing (Fujieda does brilliant costume design) and charming, appealing characters and all the Yuri a fan could want. Heck, for the cover of the second volume alone, this series could make number one. lol
The number one Yuri title of 2007 – Iono-sama Fanatics
Let me take this opportunity to thank all the folks who have sent me items to review and the companies that have provided review copies – I couldn’t do it without you.
Most importantly, I want to thank everyone who has read and commented here over the past year! I wish you all a happy, healthy New Year!
Next entry, my adventures throwing money at the Japanese economy! See you there. ^_^