Anime characters are generally organized into basic archetypes, and whenever a new character is introduced, fans are able to categorize them easily, perhaps as a glasses-wearing bookish girl with poor social skills, a dojikko with a pure and endearing personality to go with her clumsiness, and so on. Each anime season brings in new variations on the characters, like the recent trend in guutara (pathologically lazy) characters like Umaru from Himouto! Umaru-chan or Anzu from Idolmaster Cinderella Girls. As a card-carrying fan of tsundere anime characters — who are grouchy and angry 90% of the time, but loving and loyal the other 10% — I like to watch how this trope changes each year, evolving through different eras, such as the classic period (Nadia of the Mysterious Seas, original Eva series Asuka), the golden age of Kugimiya Rie tsunderes, and into the modern age. (Sometimes they show up outside the anime world, too.) So, who’s your favorite tsundere character?
I like the J-List Facebook page because I can get feedback and questions from readers, as well as ideas for writing these posts. One reader asked me to write about the challenges experienced when dating Japanese women, which is an awfully hard topic to squeeze into a small space, but I’ll do my best.
Just as some of us are fascinated with aspects of Japan’s culture and people, there are Japanese who are taken with the world outside Japan, and possibly in dating people from there. While plenty of exceptions will exist, Japanese girls are likely to be more traditional than what you might be used to, especially if she’s from a more rural area than Tokyo, so manage your expectations accordingly. While I certainly hope anyone interested in Japan will learn the language, there’s an odd phenomenon to the effect that the more Japanese you learn, the less popular you will be with (some) girls, since a foreigner with excellent Japanese is seen as less “foreign” and exciting, or something. If things get more serious, eventually it’s time to meet the family, which can be a challenge for a gaijin. My wife’s mother accepted me right away, but her father was against having an American in the family, so we all just ignored him and made our wedding plans while we waited for him to come around. Of course, you’re never dating a “country” but a unique person, so always be respectful and understanding.
J-List’s big EMS sale is going strong, and the J-List staff is busy packing up awesome figures and plush toys and kawaii kitchen items for our customers every day. We wanted to warn anyone who wanted to grab that oh-so-grabbable Super Pochaco mouse pad that the deadline to order is next Monday. Hurry!