There’s something about a romance anime that’s so bad that it provides a cheesy kind of comfort to viewers. Bad romance anime has its fair share of plot holes, predictable characters, and cat and mouse conflicts. Still, when the anime is finished, fans may feel something missing from their lives.
Feeling sad after finishing a series is a telling sign of an overall good anime, no matter the subpar show characteristics. There’s a familiar feeling with the harsh realities of secondhand embarrassment or back-and-forth relationships that fans find solace in, and there is always entertainment and humor hidden in even the most ridiculous anime.
10 Maid Sama! Portrays Misaki & Usui’s Fiery Love As Swoonworthy
At first glance, the overworked and easily angered Misaki Ayuzawa in Maid Sama! sets up a predictable love interest in the cool and collected Takumi Usui. However, the internalized competitiveness Misaki felt towards Usui ultimately brought them closer and created some cute conflicts.
Usui’s teasing nature toward Misaki displayed how her small embarrassments and vulnerabilities couldn’t be hidden from him. He is nonchalant about his feelings towards her and isn’t afraid to show or tell her, especially when he’s being cheeky and possessive. These actions make her all the more squeamish, and give fans secondhand embarrassment in the best way.
9 Toradora! Has More Than Just High School Love Triangles
Toradora! reels viewers in with its high school drama and love triangles, and it goes on to offer so much more than that. Fans may initially think they have everyone figured out, covering characters like the small angry one, the optimistic hard worker, and the beautiful yet superficial side character, but there are many layers to unpeel with these characters.
Viewers find characteristics in Minori that are incredibly relatable, like being outwardly cheerful while internal battles bubble up underneath. Toradora! recognizes and addresses these character parallels, but not before capturing the attention of fans with some alluring high school drama and confrontation.
8 Ouran High School Host Club Mocks Shojo Tropes In The Best Way
Ouran Host Club is so outwardly ridiculous and self-aware that it’s oddly enjoyable. The series covers clichéd characters like the smart one, the charming one, the mischievous twins, and the adorable one, but also cleverly covers actual troupes.
The satire is easy to spot in overly exaggerated episodes. The beach episode, for example, takes place extravagantly indoors because the entire group is insanely wealthy. It also turns some tropes on their heads, like making the female character the biggest chick-magnet in a group of men. Even the rose cover artwork and band-rock theme song are ironically funny.
7 Vampire Knight Calls Twilight Fans Home
The seductiveness of vampires is not unique to anime alone. there’s a reason Underworld and Twilight will forever be fan favorites. The dark fantasy makes viewers question their boring reality and spark some unknown desire to be bitten by a vampire and live a romantically twisted life.
It’s easy to spot the predictability of the love triangle and rivalry of Vampire Knight before even watching the first episode since there’s always a vampire and vampire slayer, calling for the perfect opportunity for a love triangle. Still, most fans can’t look away from the inviting gothic-style trope that brings comfort, as well as the undying question of which lover the main character will choose.
6 My Dress-Up Darling Speaks To Fan’s Love For Anime
This seinen series is the perfect amount of cheesy and speaks directly to fans and their love for anime. Marin Kitagawa represents anime lovers and is unapologetic about it. Her love for cosplay sparks a romance with an outwardly opposite but secretly similar character, Wakana Gojo.
Marin asks him to make her cosplay costumes, which creates some risqué flirtation between them but also helps them develop a more interpersonal relationship. This anime is equal parts cheesy and cutesy, and give fans a space where they can feel a little more vulnerable about their interests.
5 Rent-A-Girlfriend Is Like A Reality Show Fans Can’t Look Away From
Rent-A-Girlfriend is a game of cat and mouse with an internet twist. While attempting to get over his ex-girlfriend, Kazuya stumbles upon a dating app and finds the rental girlfriend Chizuru. What was meant to be a one-time fling turns into a fake relationship to appease his grandmother. This leads to further misunderstandings when his friends and ex-girlfriend get involved.
Eventually, more girls who work for the dating app also get involved, creating a messy situation for Kazuya. Like an addicting reality TV show, Rent-A-Girlfriend reels fans in with the worlds of girlfriends and the untapped potential of a student who’s just trying to survive college.
4 Kaguya-Sama: Love Is War Is A Game Of Cat & Mouse
The entire premise of Kaguya-sama: Love Is War makes for both a bad and great anime. The main characters Kaguya Shinomiya and Miyuki Shirogane attempt to get love confessions from the other without letting their own emotions show. Unfortunately, they don’t notice that their nonverbal communication has a love proclamation of its own.
Still, the lengths they go to are pretty impressive, and some fans could say inspirational. They plot against each other as if they’re in some never-ending advanced chess game. In the later seasons, there is even potential for love between other characters to steal fans’ admiration, which makes the anime that much more worth rooting for.
3 Is This A Zombie? Feels Like Anime’s Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World
Is This A Zombie? is a blend of Zombieland and Scott Pilgrim Vs The World. The terrifyingly random series takes fans to the land of the dead when Ayumu Aikawa is murdered and brought back to life as a zombie. With a new purpose of finding his murderer, he encounters outrageous characters from the supernatural world, like a magical girl and a vampire ninja.
While this anime is otherworldly outrageous, it may just be the ridiculous qualities that appeal to fans. Similar to the bad, mind-numbing zombie and vampire movies during Halloween, this anime provides a weird kind of comfort to viewers.
2 My Little Monster Is Disturbingly Good
Watching My Little Monster feels like watching Inside The Mind Of A Serial Killer. The two main characters in My Little Monster either lack the usual forms of empathy or don’t quite grasp societal norms. Haru Yoshida is a violent adolescent that is actually quite vulnerable, but not aware of how to “normally” express his feelings.
Shizuku Mizutani, on the other hand, seems outwardly normal but doesn’t understand why she lacks basic empathy for most things. Fans will find that these unique qualities make the characters incredibly interesting. While peeking into the psychology of these abnormal teens, fans find romance and deep understanding in even the most unlikely places.
1 Is It Wrong To Try To Pick Up Girls In A Dungeon? Is A Classic Guilty Pleasure
Is It Wrong To Try To Pick Up Girls In A Dungeon? is a fantasy romance anime that includes gods, monsters, magic crystals, and other guilty pleasure anime qualities. Gods grant their Familia with special powers to defeat monsters, and it creates the perfect setting for an adventurous ride.
Of course, even in the most bizarre anime with dungeons to explore and monsters to defeat, some anime will find a way to embed some romance in. Fortunately for the protagonist Bell, his love and admiration for a monster slayer named Ais is what fuels his strength and skill to become an ambitious fighter who fans want to see succeed.