Last year there was so much to suggest that I broke the Yuri Gift Guide into two separate articles, for manga and anime. Many of those series are still available, so do check out last year’s guide as well!
This year, I’m taking a different tack. There’s even more Yuri anime and manga than ever before and, as a result it has become difficult to list them all individually. (Not that I’m complaining, mind you!) So we’ll start with a few ongoing Yuri manga series available in English that I really think are worth the investment for yourself and friends who might be interested, if you or they haven’t already been reading them.
Bloom Into You
This story about a young woman’s journey to figure out what she really wants for herself has been a blockbuster hit in Japan and America. Nakatani Nio’s writing and art have evolved significantly as the series has matured and I know I look forward to reading what will happen.
The Kase-san series is a charming, realistic look at young love. It feels…real, as it touches on issues of jealousy and self-esteem and body-image and other real-world issues that young women deal with, wrapped in a touching story about two young women building a relationship together.
Kiss and White Lily for My Dearest Girl
The Yuri genre has plenty of ropes and plenty of series that spoof those tropes. At Shiroyuri Gakuen, there’s no end to the kinds of relationships we see, but there’s no mockery in any of it. Canno takes each Yuri trope and carefully crafts a unique tale of emotional connection, love or longing in this series.
This violent and bizarre tale of a lesbian psychopath hired by the police to hunt down other psychopaths is not everyone’s cup of tea, but if you’re done with school girl romances and really want something for grownups, this may just what you need.
From here on, this year’s Gift Guide is going to head down a slightly different road. I’m going to suggest a few subscription services so you can read and watch a metric ton of Yuri that you choose for yourself. This year, when your folks ask what you want, ask them for gifts that keep on giving. There are a number of subscription services you can choose from for a variety of media.
Many Yuri manga are available on the Comixology app (which can be read on Kindle.) The app also includes pamphlet comics and non-manga graphic novels so, if you like to read widely, strangely, queerly, this will get you a bunch of stuff for one price, which is still cheaper than buying new shelves all the time. ^_^
Crunchyroll is still excellent value for your money, especially if you like a wide variety of series, not just Yuri. Their premium membership includes their manga simulpub collection, as well.
But honestly, I’m going to tell you for Yuri anime, look at HIDIVE. They have all of Sentai Filmworks’ stuff and Sentai has been the company that is most likely to license Yuri – although I have a really complicated relationship with them, because long after every other company acknowledged Yuri, they were still acting like “hurh hurh, girl-on-girl! hurnh.” It’s left me with less respect for them as a company. Nonethless, Sentai is the company that has licensed series like Bodacious Space Pirates and Bloom Into You. HIDIVE has series like Sakura Trick and Cutie Honey Universe, as well.
So for Yuri anime as we head into 2019. I recommend HIDIVE streaming service as an option for a cool gift to give to a Yuri anime fan.
You can subscribe to Crunchyroll and HIDIVE on their own, or watch them each as a channel as part of a VRV subscription. Annoyingly online viewing is starting to be bundled into “channels” like cable networks. (-_-);
And, lastly, I am going to make a suggestion for the 2018 Gift Guide that I have never before done. I am recommending a Japanese Blu-Ray set.
Asagao to Kase-san Flower Edition includes a 62 minute Blu-Ray of the Kase-san and Morning Glories Anime OVA, two disks with voice cast Dramas, the theme song sung by the lead actresses, a postcard set, for $60, including shipping to the US. The Blu-Ray includes English subtitles.
I don’t usually recommend you ship something from Japan but this time…I completely believe this is worth having. The story is beautiful, the love with which it has been made and how it is told is palpable. I absolutely believe that this is the coolest Yuri gift you can get or give in 2018.
Enjoy your Yuri gift-buying and getting and let me know what you’re looking forward to in the comments!