Follow TV Tropes

Following

Yuri Genre
aka: Yuri

Go To

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/girlslove.jpg
Since homosexual males are called "gay," homosexual females should be called "ecstatic".

"Yuri is a blessed thing. The refined and subtle actions, the warmth, of a world where only girls reside...yet also the pain of interpersonal politics and selfish intrigue. And finally, those strong emotional bonds before which no hardship is an insurmountable obstacle. Verily, a finely-honed mental and spiritual realm for transcending the crude conceptions of the male mind!"
Hanadera Keisuke, Yuri Danshi
Advertisement:

Yuri (百合)Translation  refers to a Japanese Media genre about sapphic romance and sexuality. Yuri works traditionally focus either on romantic or sexual feelings, but increasingly have both. Western fans will sometimes use the term "shoujo-ai" to refer to romance-specific, less-explicit works, while using "yuri" to refer to more sexually explicit work. However, in Japan, "shoujo-ai" often refers to girl-focused pedophilia, and yuri is also known as "Girls' Love" (in English), or GL, a term created in common with the more popular male version, "Boys' Love" or BL.

Yuri is a genre distinguished by many tropes, stereotypes, and specific plotlines or interactions. The term "yuri" is so strongly associated with those tropes and stereotypes that some Japanese yuri fans use a different term, like "bian" (short for lesbian)note , "Onna x Onna" ("women x women"), or "Onna-doushi" ("women together") for works which are actually by/for lesbian women. Yuri is commonly an idealized and unrealistic portrayal of sapphic relationships, like most romance, and is not representative of actual sapphic people, culture, community, and experiences. This is, in part, due to the genre's high Fluff content.

Advertisement:

In Japan, yuri stories and portrayal depend a lot on the target audience demographic:

  • Yuri aimed at girls ("Shoujo yuri") is commonly hyperfeminine and "pure" but may feature some degree of gender-bending or cross-dressing, with the bifauxnen in a more traditionally male role. In either case, it's usually focused on stories of female solidarity, idealized femininity and gender transgression, with physical displays of affection rarely going beyond hugging and kissing.
  • Yuri aimed at adult women ("josei yuri") is usually less stereotyped and fairly realistic, like most fiction aimed at adults. Many works in the demographic are targeted at actual sapphic women, which is why this type is often called "yuri for lesbians".note 
  • Advertisement:
  • Yuri aimed at men ("seinen yuri") tends to emphasize (or overemphasize) sweetness, femininity, girlishness, innocence, purity, and moe generally. This type often shows a very romanticized or idyllic view of female adolescence or childhood. Alternatively, there are very explicit erotic stories focusing on fetishized lewd portrayals of sapphic romance or sexuality..
  • Yuri aimed at boys ("Shōnen yuri") tends to only exist as a secondary or tertiary genre under the main focus/es (see "background/subtext" yuri below). Often portrayals of sapphic romance is subsumed under sapphic sexuality in these works, often working the fetishized Girl-on-Girl Is Hot.
  • Yuri aimed at fans of the genre ("niche yuri") is found in specialized magazines where all the stories are about sapphic romance or sexuality. The first magazine of this type was Yuri Shimai, which was followed by Comic Yuri Hime and many others. These magazines try to cater to as wide an audience as possible, and publish both "pure" and erotic stories, with young and adult characters, and in all sorts of settings.
  • "Background" or "Subtext" yuri is a cross-demographic type of yuri that has been gaining a foothold in Japan. These works portray female protagonists (often Action Girls) in lasting lesbian relationships, without actually being specifically about these relationships. Though this element has the same status that a Romance Arc in non-romantic fiction does, such works are classified as yuri in addition to whatever their primary genre is.

Due to the Japanese's love for tragic stories of doomed couples, a disproportionately large amount of yuri works, especially older ones, tend to end in sadness, tragedy, obscurity, or audience-attracting sham. This is slowly changing and more fictional couples are allowed to have happy, committed, and canon endings as time goes on.

When a yuri work was made has a large impact of exactly what tropes it uses. Older yuri of the 80s, 90s, and early 2000s tend to be more rigid in their adherence to standard tropes. Recent yuri works tend to break the traditional mold much more often as the genre expands and gains more mainstream acceptance.

The most common tropes you find in yuri, especially older yuri, are Sempai Kouhai, Tomboy and Girly Girl, and Teacher/Student Romance. All three of these tropes can be cast in a particular light to make them appear to mirror or emulate heterosexual couples (see the Analysis page).

This entry is for the genre specifically. Works should be listed only if they are released as, described as, and/or feature yuri. Couple-specific examples should only be listed below if they're the focus of the series. For sapphic couples and crushes in other genres, see Token Yuri Girls. See also: Slash Fic, Everyone Is Gay, and Schoolgirl Lesbians. Compare and contrast Romantic Two-Girl Friendship. The Distaff Counterparts of Yuri are Yaoi, Shounen-Ai, and Bara, which feature male-male romance and sexuality.


Links and Resources


    Subtopes associated with the Yuri genre 

Creators and Examples

This genre is specific to Eastern Asia. East Asian and Animesque media ONLY.

    open/close all folders 

    Prolific Creators 
  • Go Nagai. While not known mainly for it, has proven himself partial to yuri.
  • Natsuneko. Has only written one-shots so far (see full list on her page).
  • Hiyori Otsu:
    • Aqua Blue Cinema
    • Clover
    • Orange and Yellow
  • Kaoru Sudoo. Disappeared from the industry for five years due to health problems (leaving OKG unfinished), before finally returning in 2016 with a new (very NSWF) series.
  • Jin Takemiya started working on original yuri doujin in 2007 and eventually debuted in Yuri-Hime, winning their Division Prize for her one-shot "All My Love and Lies" (later included in the Love Flicker collection) in 2009. Writing primarily in the Slice of Life genre, Takemiya is incredibly prolific, and her works have been featured in every issue of Yuri-Hime since her debut.
    • Chouchou Nannan (lit. "Call and Reply", which is a Japanese idiom for light-hearted flirting) follows a Four-Girl Ensemble with way too many hidden Love Triangles between them.
    • Fragments of Love, Takemiya's biggest work to date, follows Mika, a confident and serious high school girl with a preference for older women, on her daily life and relationships. The tie-in Love & Piece (sic!) serves as an Origin Story for the main plot's not-quite-Beta Couple.
    • Game concerns Chiriko, who finds herself the target of the Foreign Exchange Student Rebecca's affections, because she happens to look exactly like her favorite Dating Sim character.
    • Girlish Sweet is somewhat of a Concept Album: it follows several mostly unrelated couples, but with a few pervasive motifs (the author refers to it as her "Red Seifuku Series", after the school uniforms most characters wear) and themes (various allusions to sweetness and sweet things).
    • Irrational Us stars two Office Ladies sharing a very emotionally unhealthy relationship.
    • KiLa KiLa follows Saya, a Fangirl of the Idol Singer Ria, who finds herself falling in love with the latter's insecure twin sister Mari. This story has thematic overlaps with My Beloved — another Love Triangle involving two sisters vying for affections of the same girl.
    • Love Flicker was Takemiya's first collection of previously published one-shots.
    • Perfume of Love is another Concept Album, united by the theme of scents and aromas.
  • Akihito Yoshitomi. Is well-known for his contributions to the genre, though he tends to take weird approaches:
    • Blue Drop, although the anime is much less explicit with its Girls' Love than the first and third manga of the series. The second manga Tenshi no Bokura moves away from Girls' Love, as the focus is on a heterosexual pair.
    • Sisterism is a GL manga about two childhood friends falling in love with each other's little sisters. Who are both 12. Although it's hinted that they're actually attracted to each other and misinterpreted their feelings.
    • Two and Two is a slightly different take on a similar setup, with two schoolgirl roommates discovering their attraction to each other only after they independently start dating older women. Both of whom are childhood friends, so it's complicated. Also, at least one pairing is into domination/submission play.
  • Mochi Au Lait started as a Pixiv artist whose popularity skyrocketed when her works had been translated to English. Since then, she's gotten a few manga volumes printed. Her stories are known for featuring a cute and funny Odd Couple, one that is often sisters. Mochi's series and one-shots overlap often, indicating they're all in the the same universe, which fans refer to as the "Mochiverse".
    • Kasumi And Acchan, her first longer-running series, features Kasumi and Akari "Acchan" and two schoolgirls who start in an ambiguous relationship. Are they romantic friends or are they something more? They sure are flirty!
    • Met My Sister On A Dating Site is her second long-running series. Adult sisters Ayumu and Sayo end up connecting on a dating website and begin their incestuous relationship in earnest. The second volume, published late 2017, indicates they're going to end up Happily Married.
    • Yuri Summer -Kagaya Inn- is a springboard series originating from an earlier one-shot Yuri Family about a family of five sisters that runs a ryokan. The series chronicles not only the relationships of guests (so far two Office Ladies and a Actress/Manga couple) but the seemingly incestuous interactions between the sisters.
    • Twin Sisters is Exactly What It Says on the Tin. A twincest shorter series about schoolgirls Otoya and Asane.
    • Fell in Love With a Girl 8 Years Younger is just what the title says, a story about two co-workers with an age gap. Currently on hiatus.
    • Video Rental Shop shows a female customer enamored with a female employee of a video rental shop. Currently on hiatus.
    • Note: Mochi has many many more works in the forms of one and two-shot type stories. For those, see her creator page.
  • Kodama Naoko:

    Anime adapted from Original Manga 

    Original Manga 
  • Husky and Medley chronicles the budding romance between the eponymous pair of high school students who attend an all girls school. Based on a True Story, the real couple as of 2019 are celebrating a decade together.
  • Is My Hobby Weird? is a Slice of Life mini-series about Maiko Fujiyama, who spends her morning commute staring up other girls' skirts to admire their buttocks. Which is how she meets Risa Tsuzuki, her ideal matchnote . The story follows their sexual escapades and their blossoming relationship, using a mixture of comedy and light drama.
  • Junsui Adolescence, a manga that deals mainly with a relationship between a student and her school nurse.
  • Kakeochi Girl is a josei manga about a woman meeting her first love again only to find out that she is currently pregnant and is planning to get married. A very gayngst story.
  • Maka Maka is a yuri hentai manga about two college aged girls.
  • Otome No Teikoku: Also known as Virgin's Empire, a Slice of Life series about school girls and their relationships, with more than a little nudity. Created by the author of the Cult Classic Maka-Maka.
  • Pieta: A josei manga that contains a dark psychologic yuri story.
  • Poor Poor Lips: A Gag Series Yon Koma with surprising depth about the lives of a rich, lesbian employer and her poor employee.
  • Plica is a slice-of-life four-panel comic about adult lesbians (so it's not really girls' love, but...)
  • Prism is a manga about a girl who fell in love with a 'boy' in elementary only for them to be reunited years later with the revelation 'he' is really a very pretty girl. Written by the same mangaka as Stretch.
  • A Room For Two is about two girls with completely opposite personalities becoming roommoates and maybe more.
  • Saki Shinohayu -dawn of age-, an ongoing 2013 prequel spinoff of Saki
  • Satou Kashi no Dangan wa Uchinukenai, a shojo manga that follows the relationship between a schoolgirl who wishes to rely on no one but herself, and a self-proclaimed mermaid who must find true friendship in one month's time or she will fade away forever.
  • Sekai De Ichiban Oppai Ga Suki: Archery club member Ichihara Chiaki is a huge breasts fetishist who is obsessed with the well-endowed Harumi Hana.
  • Shinozaki-san Ki wo Ota Shika ni! About a girl who is in the closet... about being an otaku. And sure, she may have some weird fantasies about her friend Kaede, but that's just because she's so cute it's a crime that she should be an otaku. So Akina must save Kaede from that terrible lifestyle... and maybe get a special thank you when they're alone.
  • Shiro

    Original Anime 

    Original Light Novels 
  • Do You Think Someone Like You Can Defeat The Demon King is a rare combination with Dark Fantasy. It takes place in a medieval Crapsack World and its story is all about corruption, Body Horror, twisted experiments and the good guys struggling to survive, but it also has a romantic subplot about the two female leads falling in love.
  • Last and First Idol is a Seiun Award-winning "existential widescreen yuri baroque proletariat hard sci-fi idol story" by Gengen Kusano that was later grouped with two of his other Yuri works with sci-fi elements (Evolution Girls and Dark Seiyuu) and published as a collection. ''Last And First Idol' is notable in that it is the first debut work to win the Seiun Award in 42 years and in that it started out as a Love Live! fanfiction.
  • Maria Watches Over Us is one of the most popular yuri series, however it is about Romantic Two Girl Friendships between students in an all-girls high school. Though none of the relationships go past subtext (with one exception in the backstory), it is nevertheless iconic of the yuri genre.
  • Otherside Picnic is the story of two young women exploring the mysterious "Otherside," a realm where strange phenomenon and anomalies based around Japanese Creepypasta and urban legends manifest. While the series is primarily classified as a Sci-Fi Horror, a major element is the developing relationship between Toriko and Sorawo, one that explictly becomes romantic by the third volume.
  • Strawberry Panic! is set at a cluster of three girls' schools populated largely entirely by Schoolgirl Lesbians.

    Video Games 

    Visual Novels 
  • Akai Ito is a Girls' Love Visual Novel with a heavy fetish for vampirism and also goes very deep into Japanese mythology.
    • Aoi Shiro: The semi-sequel to Akai Ito which takes place in the same universe.
  • A Little Lily Princess is a retelling of A Little Princess with a yuri twist.
  • Amaranto is also all about vampires (and schoolgirl lesbians).
  • Atlach=Nacha
  • The Expression Amrilato tells the story of a girl trapped in another world where the language spoken is based on Esperanto, the Universal Language, and her growing relationship with a girl living in this new world.
  • Flowers (2014) is a modern visual novel series with a classic, Maria-sama ga Miteru-style aesthetic, albeit with more overtly lesbian characters, and some light Mystery elements.
  • Her Tears Were My Light involves romance between female anthropomorphisms of time and space plus nothingness.
  • Heart of the Woods
  • Highway Blossoms
  • Kindred Spirits on the Roof is a light-hearted, Slice of Life yuri visual novel based around a ghost lesbian couple recruiting a girl who can see them into helping bring together a number of other potential lesbian couples at their school. Unlike most yuri visual novels, this one feels much more aimed towards women. The art and character design style is more realistic and resembles fashion art more than Moe, and the game doesn't shy away from labeling the relationships as homosexual and dealing with issues like subtle homophobia.
  • Limit Panic
  • Love Is Strange is a fangame of Life Is Strange set in a Lighter and Softer Alternate Universe wherein the protagonist of the original game must choose, between four of the original game's female characters, her partner for a photography contest.
  • Maiden Panic
  • Mizuchi tells the story of a village girl who can either fall in love with an alluring shapeshifting snake or a friendly female monk. It's inspired by the legend of the White Snake.
  • Ne no Kami: The Two Princess Knights of Kyoto is a mix of Yuri with Urban Fantasy, Slice of Life and Conspiracy Thriller that mostly focuses on the story of two lesbian couples.
  • Nurse Love Addiction is about a 19-year-old girl entering nursing school who, depending on the player's choices, can develop a relationships with one of her fellow students or her teacher.
  • Nurse Love Syndrome is about a 21-year-old nurse at Yurigahama Hospital. Her romance options include two fellow nurses, three patients at the hospital, and the head nurse of internal medicines.
  • Romance Detective is a detective-story styled version, in which the titular detective teams up with a cop to uncover the mystery behind a mind-altering aphrodisiac.
  • Sea Bed is a yuri themed mystery drama, with heavy psychological aspects. Unlike many other Yuri Visual Novels, it has a clear LGBTQ audience in mind, with its realism, mental health themes, and subdued character designs standing out.
  • Solfege: Sweet Harmony
  • Sono Hanabira ni Kuchizuke wo (A Kiss for the Petals, pictured above) is presently considered the definitive Girls' Love Eroge series. It has had a hentai OVA based on it released.
  • Starlight Vega
  • Strawberry Vinegar is about a slowly evolving crush between two 9 year girls, one of which is a demon.
    • A lot of Ebi-hime's works have elements of yuri. Asphyxia and Once On A Windswept Night are female-only cast VN's that have yuri elements, and Asphyxia even shares visual designers with Strawberry Vinegar.

    Other 
  • The manga Claudine...!, written by Dear Brother's author Riyoko Ikeda, is often wrongly classified as Yuri. However, this is a mistake. The main character, Claudine de Montesse, is a transgender man who searches for female love interests. He is referred as a man such by other characters. His Unlucky Childhood Friend Rosemarie, for example, describes him as "a true man, given a woman's body". Therefore, it'd be incorrect to classify this particular manga as yuri. Although homosexuality and transness are both LGBTQ issues, they are different and, whilst they can overlap, it's not always the case.
  • Stellar Ranger Dark Star has the main romance and love triangle in the story fall between three Magical Girls.
  • Their Story, an original online yuri manhua by Tan Jiu about a tomboy who falls head-over-heels for a girl at a neighboring high school
  • Cross Heart, an original Spanish/English-language online manga by Ana-Christina Sanchez, about teenage girl named Haru who falls for the popular but aloof Kotomi. She soon learns Kotomi has quite a troubled past.
  • Fluttering Feelings, an original Korean manhwa by Ssamba, is a Slice of Life story about two Business University students, the average slightly immature Kim No-Rae and the beautifully captivating Baek Seol-A.
  • Lily Love, from Thailand by Ratana Satis, follows the life of Donut, a college girl who doesn't believe in soulmates. A chance meeting with her new neighbor, Mew, led to friendship and grows into something much more.
  • World Canvas, by Godley Malabanan, is about Sera, who was born with the power to see the little pieces of soul people leave in their art. She takes an interest on an artist, Rhiannon, upon finding out her power doesn't work on her art. Notable for being the first commercially published GL comic in Tagalog.
  • Magan&Danai, an original Chinese webcomic by ermuzibu, is a comedic Slice of Life series about a tsundere woman and her girlfriend.
  • Santiago Nights, an original English language light novel, about Lily Oda, a young werewolf mob enforcer and her human mate, Chelsea Heartfield.
  • These Days, by goodboy64, is an original English web serial, focusing on Akiyama Lilly, who obtains super powers after her best friend, Haruko Rea, confesses to her. Things violently escalate from there.
  • Hands Held In The Snow is an English-language Queer Romance Web Serial Novel about two young women who meet, bond over books, and fall in love in a wintery fantasy city.
  • Love Is Strange a Fan Remake of Life Is Strange which jettisons all of the angst and makes it a full-on Dating Sim between Max and the girl of her choice.
  • The Webcomic The Secrets of the Afterlife defines itself as "yuri". Taking place in an all-girls environment, this story follows Anya and June, two teenage girls living together.
  • It Would Be Great If You Didnt Exist: A Korean Manhwa about two women who meet in a less then ideal situation when Guk-hwa confronts her boyfriend and his mistress Jang-Mi, but instead of hating each other Guk-hwa and Jang-Mi are instantly attracted to one another.
  • Beloved is a Chinese webcomic about a thirty-four year old eye doctor who has a one-night stand that eventually turns into something more. Much to her horror, her partner turns out to actually be sixteen.
  • Comic book Goldie Vance about a female would-be sleuth who's also in a relationship with another girl.
  • What Does The Fox Say is a Korean webcomic about a love triangle involving three female co-workers.
  • I Favor The Villainess is a web novel/light novel about a woman who finds herself reincarnated as the protagonist of an otome (princess/lady) dating sim. As the title implies, she only has eyes for one of the main female rivals instead of the intended three princes.
  • Mage & Demon Queen, an English fantasy webcomic by Godley Malabanan set in an RPG-Mechanics Verse. It follows the love-struck female mage, Malori who, unlike other adventurers that seek to take the head of Demon Queen Vel, wishes to take her hand instead.
  • Doki Doki Literature Girls is a fan comic based on the psychological horror visual novel Doki Doki Literature Club!. In the story, the girls are the Official Couples.
  • Female General and Eldest Princess is a Historical Fiction Chinese Novel, originally published as a Web Serial Novel; it stars a cross-dressing Chinese solider, Lin Wanyue rising through the ranks of the Chinese military during the Tang Dynasty, whose aim is to get Revenge on the Hun's who slaughter her family. It focuses on the blossoming relationship between her and ruthless Imperial Princess, Xian, as they navigate Chinese court politics together. It had been adapted into a radia-drama, as well as a Chinese Manhua.

Alternative Title(s): Girl Love, Yuri, Shoujo Ai, Girls Love

Top

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:

/

Media sources:

/

Report