Follow TV Tropes

Please don't list this on a work's page as a trope.
Examples can go on the work's YMMV tab.


Bishōnen Jump Syndrome

Go To

"I'm here because we have no female fanbase."

Bishonen Jump Syndrome, also known as Shoujo Jump Syndrome or the Odagiri Effect in live-action circles, is a specific trend aimed at attracting a female Periphery Demographic through attractive male characters, often of the gratuitously Pretty Boy or Bishōnen type. The former two names are titled after Shonen Jump, which starting from at least the late 80's often features handsome male protagonists in its stories, while the latter is named after Joe Odagiri, the actor behind the title character of Kamen Rider Kuuga, whose young face contrasted the gruffer, more rugged men leading the Kamen Rider series until that point.

The success of this method by Shonen Jump promptly got the idea copied by other shonen magazines, to the extent that it is now more-or-less standard procedure. It is nonetheless often ridiculed by readers who prefer the older tough-looking art styles, who deride Shonen Jump as "Bishonen Jump" or "Shoujo Jump". Similarly, its use in Dorama and other live-action outings accost similar accusations of aiming towards the Chick Flick market.

Compare Estrogen Brigade.

For more information, see this essay or this essay (the latter was originally in Japanese and is awkwardly translated but informative). See also The Other Wiki's article on the subject (under the "Odagiri Effect" name).


    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • Ace of the Diamond: The character design certainly evokes this, especially compared to the other sports anime that aired in the same season, Yowamushi Pedal. However, in comparison in other sports animes, it isn't much.
  • This is very likely why the sequel series to Boys over Flowers switched to Shonen Jump+. It could expand the audience a little while still having the series normal female audience read it anyway.
  • DAYS: It's a shounen manga and running in a shounen magazine, but that doesn't stop all the boys from being ridiculously pretty.
  • In Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, following some of its admitted inspirations: Bleach and Jojos Bizarre Adventure, the series is filled to the brim with all sorts of attractive male archetypes, ensuring any fan to easily find one of their liking, which contributed to the series early humble manga-only popularity already being quite female populated, before the anime kick-started the series to a Multiple Demographic Appeal phenomenon. All officially endorsed popularity polls in Japan is a testament of how women dominate the most fervorous side of the fandom, the top ranked characters are some of the prettiest boys, with female characters consistently ranking lower than them.
  • Food Wars!: Many of the male characters are drawn very prettily, such as Takumi, Satoshi Isshiki and Akira. In the Fall Classic, Isami Aldini not only slims down, but turns into Tall, Dark, and Handsome; even Zenji Marui, the resident Butt-Monkey Extreme Doormat, is drawn nicely.
  • Haikyuu!!: Although the character designs are a bit more Moe than other Jump series, the majority of the cast leaning towards the bishounen side has certainly helped gain its female audience.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
    • Joseph Joestar, the protagonist of Part 2. A particularly notable case in that he actually predates the Bishōnen Jump Syndrome phenomenon by quite a few years, though it doesn't come off as any less fanservicey.
    • Rohan Kishibe and Guido Mista, who do take advantage of Bishōnen Jump Syndrome, also count as well.
  • Kuroko's Basketball has a large cast of fit and handsome basketball players who frequently get sweaty in their matches and intense in their friendships and rivalries. The yaoi fangirl following for this one is large.
  • From Naruto, Sasuke seems designed to conform to this trope: he's a Tall, Dark, and Snarky Troubled, but Cute Bishōnen whose main outfit post-timeskip includes an open shirt; furthermore, he gets quite a few Shirtless Scenes, he gets tied up a lot pre-timeskip, and he's (indirectly) shown almost completely naked at one point, when Konohamaru transforms into him and Sai concealed by nothing more than Censor Steam to prove to Sakura that she's just as much a pervert as Naruto is via Guy on Guy Is Hot.
  • An episode of Outbreak Company mentions this with Minori's favorite soccer anime, a case of Bishōnen Jump Syndrome.
  • It's very easy to confuse The Prince of Tennis for a shoujo series due to its overwhelmingly Cast Full of Pretty Boys and large female following (many of whom like to ship the characters together). There are even official otome games based on the franchise. It's actually a Shōnen manga and anime, as the manga was serialized in Shonen Jump, but executives eventually caught on to how popular the series had become with girls and started marketing it towards them as well, with regular ads for it in shoujo magazines and magazines aimed at female otaku.
  • Real Account: Despite not being a Shonen Jump manga, most of the main male characters are Bishōnen.
  • Reborn! (2004), also serialized in Shounen Jump (and, unusually, drawn by a woman), is well-known for its attractive male cast. The protagonist Tsuna can easily be considered adorable, and he's surrounded by a bevy of very pretty and cool boys who are all dedicated to protecting him. With a setup like this, it's no wonder its yaoi fandom remains large.
  • The Royal Tutor has a very shojo art style, a cast consisting almost entirely of Bishōnen princes, and mostly revolves around cute boys doing cute things. The manga was serialized in Monthly G Fantasy a shonen publication. That said, G Fantasy, which also published Black Butler above, has a very high female readership and thrives on Bishōnen Jump Syndrome.
  • Rurouni Kenshin: RuroKen was one of the first Shonen Jump series to cater to this, since many female fans were first attracted to the series because of the attractive male cast. However, because it was such a new thing at the time, Watsuki kept getting in trouble with his editors, who demanded he make the series more male-targeted (observing the strict gender segregation shonen manga had at the time). Several times in early volumes, Watsuki apologizes for the series being more popular with girls than boys.
  • Saint Seiya is often considered to have started the trend of making massively male casts in male-targeted manga pretty. Saint Seiya appeared at a time when shounen manga favored depicting extremely rugged men a la Fist of the North Star, and its then-unusual sparkly artwork and lean boys reminiscent of Shoujo manga is considered to have turned the tide on this.
  • Tokyo Ghoul: The series is primarily aimed at a male audience, but there's no denying the sheer amount of very attractive males in the series and the massive amounts of Ho Yay thanks to Tsukiyama. Notably, Kaneki and Amon are both prone to scenes that show off their amazing physiques and Kaneki gains a Sexy Backless Outfit after the timeskip.
  • This can also be found with manga adaptations of female-aimed video games, such as the manga adaptations of Touken Ranbu and Ensemble Stars!. In this case, the source material is for a female audience, but the manga is published in a neutral to male-leaning magazine like Shonen Jump Plus or Dengeki G's. Although some say it's to catch a male audience using the inverse of this trope (boys being drawn to a female-demographic work through use of appealing Shonen elements), others argue it's to keep away from the usual stigma behind Shoujo manga exhibited by both boys and girls.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam Wing had a cast of Bishōnen as Gundam pilots, and was the first Gundam series to really do so. Rumor has it that this was done deliberately to attract more girls to Gundam. It worked, and all the series after that do the same thing.

    Light Novel 

    Live-Action TV 
  • Hissatsu: Especially enforced after the Shigotonin series, after it proved to be very succesful at getting a higher female viewership.
  • Kamen Rider Kuuga: Joe Odagiri starring as the titular character is what gave rise to the "Odagiri effect", as the producers discovered the show, aimed at boys between 4 and 12 years old, had been unintentionally attracting older girls and women, who were interested in looking at the handsome actor. Every Kamen Rider series, as well as Super Sentai, has cast pretty-looking men in the lead roles ever since, sometimes to the chagrin of the original male fanbase.
  • Before that, during the run of Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger, it was observed that Burai, the first regular Sixth Ranger in Super Sentai, had become popular with mothers.


    Web Original 
  • Alluded to in Anime World Order: Daryl often voices his contempt for recent shounen series for trying to get a female audience, dubbing them "neo-shounen" because of it.

Alternative Title(s): Shoujo Jump Syndrome, Odagiri Effect