One of the great things about anime is that it challenges us to think about the world in new ways, including re-thinking traditional gender roles. Ever since we were all exposed to Ranma 1/2, a boy cursed to change sex whenever he gets wet, and the “cousins with benefits” Sailor Uranus and Neptune, anime has delivered stories to us about new and interesting gender roles. Then along came a character named Bridget from 2002’s Guilty Gear, and ever since the genre of otokonoko has been a cornerstone of anime pop culture. Since Astolfo is trending on Twitter today, I thought it would be good to explore the best otokonoko characters in the history of anime!
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Maria†Holic is a great anime about a girl named Kanako who’s ready to have the ultimate lesbian high school romance… until she discovers that her intended, the elegant and cultured Mariya Shido, is a cross-dressing boy. This 2009 anime showcased the impressive animation chops of studio Shaft before they were a household name among fans.
The Classic Otokonoko: Hime Arikawa
What happens when a poor boy is forced to cross-dress by rich girls around him? Something hilarious and adorable!
Rather than being a classic otokonoko, Hideyoshi’s gender is… Hideyoshi.
We Love Otokonoko Catboys: Felix Argyle
A popular catboy character from the Re:Zero anime, we love the way he makes Subaru uncomfortable.
As a card-carrying fan of voice actress Rie Kugimiya, I love the characters of Hasuta, a female alien from the planet Cthugha in Haiyore! Nyaruko-san because he’s the first otokonoko voice she’s done.
D’arc Hoshino, the Otokonoko Maid
Luka is a boy more feminine than any woman, tall yet with delicate mannerisms. When Okabe builds the D-mail message system that can send text messages into the past — you’re not a Steins;Gate fan if you need to ask what the “D” stands for — Luka sends a message to his then-pregnant mother suggesting she eat more vegetables. This changes the timeline so that Luka stays the same, but gets rid of the “D” she didn’t want.
What are the most famous anime phrases inside Japan? Here’s a blog post about this subject!
A fun character from the outstanding Haganai anime, Yukimura is a confused boy who thinks he’s a girl, but in the end, he’s a girl (?).
The Cutest Boy is Saika Totsuka
An effeminate boy from the Oregairu series, Saika is always causing problems for Hachiman by being so darned cute.
Hideri Kanzaki, Otokonoko Maid
The character who puts the “S” (secret) in Blend S is Hideri, a boy whose dream is to work in a maid cafe.
Rider Of Black, Astolfo
Naturally, the best otokonoko has to be Astolfo, Rider of Black, from Fate/Apocrypha. And his official parody onahole is one of the top-sellers on the J-List site month after month. Because of course, it is.
Thanks for reading this post exploring the best otokonoko characters in anime. Did we miss your favorite character? Tell us below, or on Twitter!
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