Dere To Believe Part 2: Yandere

Here we go again with another segment on anime personalities and why they do not translate to real life. Today’s model personality (and an EXTREMELY popular one at that) is the yandere and what makes them so damn appealing. Grab your knives and turn off your cellphones because she’s likely tracked your location and she is on her way to your house.

What is a Yandere?

Yandere (ヤンデレ) is derived from the Japanese word yanderu (病んでる) which means “insane” or “sick” and deredere (デレデレ) which means affectionate. Put those two words together and you have someone who literally sick/insane with “love” for another person and laundry list of problems that are only beginning and will, in fact, get so much worse. 

The Yandere is (usually) a female character who is in love with someone who is often the main character. Since this is often a female trope I will use the pronouns she/her throughout this post. Her love is characterized by her willingness to do anything to prove her love to the object of her affection. And by anything we mean ANYTHING. Stalking, kidnapping, (attempted) murder are not stricken from the list. If she wants you, she will have you at ANY COST. She may or may not have a body count (dead or alive), several social media accounts, and maybe a burner phone along with diaries or a stalker shrine. And more often than not, she has a very cute appearance.

On the surface, most Yanderes are fairly well put together, likable, and unassuming and usually friendly people…that is until they develop a love interest. In anime they take the forms of characters such as the notorious Yuno Gasai:

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That cellphone is magic.

Possibly tied for first with Kotonoha Katsura:

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Something about a boat?

And then there’s this bitch:

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Anna Nishikiyomiya- Shimoneta

You have to watch the anime to get the full scope of why she’s terrifying. She’s played for laughs.

Through my personal observations and some help from Captain Obvious I’ve noticed that in spite of the very terrible things these characters do (Yuno drugs and kidnaps Yuki, Kotonoha kills her rival and her love interest), they still have an even more dedicated fanbase. Even though these characters are in dire need of therapy and commitment to an institution, the predominantly male fanbase goes fucking nuts over them.

Who is a Yandere?

Technically anyone can be a yandere if they get desperate enough. Get rejected “one too many times”? Can’t get someone off your mind and refuse to deal with it in a healthy way? Got entitlement issues? You’re a Yandere in the making and you might want to seek help?

Why is a Yandere?

Why are they like this? In anime they’re usually given a tragic backstory that gains audience sympathy. You don’t agree with her actions but you’ve developed an understanding. Double those points if you can see yourself doing similar things if you were in their situation. Sometimes they’re used for comedic effect like Juvia from Fairy Tail.

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She gets a little better…

Sometimes they’re the Token Evil Teammate who is only around to protect their love interest from anyone who is a rival—which is pretty much everyone who is NOT them. They are prone to wildly inappropriate behavior which includes (but is not limited to):

  • Stalking
  • Taking pictures of said person without their knowledge.
  • Kidnapping or paying someone to kidnap their love interest
  • Attempting to isolate their LI, usually done by spreading rumors or emotionally/financially abusing them
  • Sexually harassing/assaulting them
  • Stealing items that belong to said person
  • Continuing unwanted contact (creating multiple social media accounts to continue interactions)

And this largely gets swept under the rug because they are attractive. Case and point:

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Article found here.

I found this on the Facebook page Eccentric Weeaboo where the poster cleverly shares the events with the caption “Real Life Yandere You Say”?

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Also, fuck this person for calling her a girl. She’s 21.

The story according to Tokyo Reporter is a woman stabbed the man twice and was prepared to kill herself when the police caught her. I will not link the aftermath photo to avoid the squeamish aspects. I will also not be linking the comments that state the various levels of admiration and the *ahem* things they’d like to have this woman do to them and vice versa. I will however share this post because it encompasses my collective confusion at some of ya’ll:

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How are Yanderes?

The collection of “what the fuck-ness” that is my brain continues to baffle me while reading the comments on these posts. I’m not entirely sure why men are this way towards cute female characters that would in fact kill them to keep them. In the case of this woman, I would dare say that Japense fetishization plays HEAVILY in the roll of wishing to have a yandere gf, but that’s a post for another day and ya’ll ain’t ready for this.

As long as the person in question is attractive, all sorts of behaviors can be excused due to pretty bias. It’s a psychological thing where you associate beauty with goodness and your cognitive dissonance erases anything resembling common sense because you’re stupid. That’s it. Stupidity. Your stupid horny ass is going to get you killed.

While being a dumbass sucks, it’s kind of understandable. After all, a yandere’s obsession can often be seen as love to some people. And honestly, the appeal of someone being willing to do anything to protect you and keep your happiness in the forefront of their minds sounds like an ideal loving relationship–at first. Unhealthy relationship expectations, inexperience, and low self esteem are pitfalls that make people vulnerable to these kinds of people. And then there are people who actively pursue this sort of thing.

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I’m not here to tell you where to stick your dick, but I’m also suggesting that you don’t bed crazy or actively pursue it. The Yandere personality translated to real life is terrifying with tragic results. A quick Google search will turn up no shortage of articles on “spurned lovers” who “snapped” and killed the objects of their obsession and caused TONS of collateral damage as a result. I also understand that not everyone is like this. The comments sections of articles of beautiful women committing crimes is full of people who understand the despicableness of their actions and hold them accountable.

When are Yanderes?

When are Yanderes acceptable? By acceptable I mean “when are yandere’s seen as love-interests and when are they creepy?” There are two rules that are consistently followed:

  1. They have a backstory with enough audience sympathy to make their actions seem “not as bad” or justifiable/understandable based on their plight.
  2. They are attractive, almost to a fault. The ones I’ve seen in media are often quiet and unassuming, often nice or polite. They are pretty, nice to look at, and have nice voices.

In real life this sometimes translates and sometimes doesn’t. Female stalking (a stock yandere behavior) is often seen as a sign of mental illness and is usually unacceptable. This is explored in the video “Stalking for Love” by Pop Culture Detective.

There are several videos that explore this and similar concepts that get portrayed in media as positive when they actually shouldn’t and also happen to be textbook yandere behaviors:

Yanderes in real life are obsessive, controlling, and abusive individuals. Making multiple social media accounts to “check up on” or stay in contact with people who do not want to be in contact with you is not healthy. Threatening to hurt yourself or others is also wrong. The best thing you can do for yourself when you’re rejected is to back off and move on with your life. Some therapy wouldn’t hurt either.

Are YOU the Yandere?

Maybe you’ve noticed while reading this that some of your behaviors fall along these lines. What do you do when you’ve been obsessively stalking someone? What do you do when you’re three accounts deep and people have receipts? You’ve recognized your behavior and you want to stop it.

First of all, I’m not your psychologist or your therapist so I can’t actually give you the best advice you need to change and rectify your behaviors. I’m also not studying psychology or anything in that field so I’m not an expert on these things. The only thing I can do is point you in the right direction. So here are a few bits of food for thought:

  • Schedule an appointment with a doctor/psychologist/therapist as soon as possible. If you’re unable to schedule with a professional, the next best thing is to join a support group for people with obsessive behaviors.
  • Delete your extra social media accounts. You don’t need them.
  • Look for and practice healthy behaviors that will help your mental health.

Seeking help is your first step to recovery and developing a health sense of self and relationships.


If you liked reading this buy me a ko-fi sometime!

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Ecchi Review: Velvet Kiss

Romance, ecchi, hentai, smut, you name it, I’m all over it. The intrigue of romance and sex always makes for a good read. That previous sentence is an eloquent way of saying “I like porn with plot and plot with porn.” I’ll make it a note to share and review my favorites from now on because why not?

I discovered Velvet Kiss a few years back when I was going through Mangafox. I personally don’t recommend Mangafox as a reader because of the ads that keep popping up and ruining my reading experience. Now it’s available to purchase through various retailers, and I actually have the first volume…in German.

 

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I really need to read the product description before I purchase.

This story is one of my favorites to revisit because I enjoy the artwork, and some of the sex scenes are pretty hot. While no genitalia is drawn, the scenes still manage to be quite erotic. The character’s emotions are conveyed pretty well and seem most realistic, or at the very least interesting.

 

The Plot:

The story revolves around Shin Nitta who has suddenly found himself with an 80 million yen debt. In order to “pay it off” or at least stave off payments, he has to keep a wealthy young woman named Kano company. And by keeping her company we mean: be her errand boy and sex friend. No joke, the first day they meet she requests to have sex with him and he complies.

 

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The rest can be read here.

He also does various other errands such as: calling him in the middle of work to come see her, buying her and her friends snacks, picking up her laundry, and keeping her company. Between fetch quests and trying to keep up with her while also covering his tracks and making excuses for not being at work, there’s this underlying story about the Kuchiya’s–Kano’s family–and how they have been covering up some pretty shady business.

Over time, the two form an…interesting relationship as Nitta begins to genuinely care for Kano and in turn, Kano begins to defrost. Do they come to love each other? That sort of happens–but they realize there’s a distance between them and that might not be possible to overcome. The ending is fairly satisfying and I don’t think any more volumes need to be made.

 

The Problems:

Consent seems to be a bit of an issue here. The relationship between Nitta and Kano is woefully unbalanced. Kano is a rich woman who uses her status to get what she wants from him. Nitta is bending to her because he doesn’t want to be in debt. Their relationship is coercive, even if he enjoys being able to bang Kano on the regular.

I was also wondering about Kano’s age that never gets addressed in-story. I had managed to gather that she had at least finished high school and hadn’t started any university. This put her at around 18-19 or possibly 20 years old. Her twintail hairstyle seemed like a childish choice but I think it highlighted her immaturity or unwillingness to grow up and take responsibility for herself. When she gets serious she changes her hair to a more mature style.

 

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Which saves us the problem of age.

 

 

 

A few subplots go nowhere and one villain goes free. We never find out what happens to Kano’s former flame Yuki and his aspirations. No talk of Nitta’s brother or the journalist either. We don’t know what happens to the rest of Kano’s friends once she ditches them. Maybe it’s for the better, who knows? The story kind of just ends and leaves the rest to our imagination.

 

What Do I Think?

While this is one of my personal favorites I will admit that it’s kind of a cheap thrill. It’s not the worst kind of smut out there. I’ve read much, much, MUCH worse than this and if you read shojou, hentai, or smut on the regular you will understand.

The sex scenes are pretty awesome. Exhibitionism seems to be a running kink in this story because Nitta and Kano; as well as a few other characters, get it on while risking getting caught in public and semi-public places. There’s also sex used as a bartering tool for information and sex used as recreation at parties.

I think the artist does a fair job trying to paint sex in different lights. Sex between Kano and Nitta is painted as antagonistic and uneven before finally becoming loving. Sex between villainous or amoral characters is seen as creepy and controlling. On the other hand, sex with the journalist and Nitta’s brother is painted as comedic and lighthearted.

I also feel like this novel captures a sort of “wish fulfillment” fantasy. This story is meant to be a fantasy and isn’t something you should hope to experience. This point is driven home by the reality that Nitta’s ditching work eventually gets him fired. Kano has to come face to face with her trauma. The two also part ways, unlikely to see each other again. It’s a whirlwind of emotion and not all of it is dealt with. The timeskip is the only thing that gives us any sort of catharsis and it’s a bit of a punch in the gut.

The artwork is fairly nice. It’s clear that Chihiro Harumi has a preference for large breasts and great fashion. Kano and various other female characters get some pretty sweet getup. There is some fanservice but it doesn’t feel forced. For instance: having short skirts but without thigh high stockings.

This manga will always be on the top of my most wanted list for years to come. It’s always one of the first I recommend to those new to the genre of ecchi.

Final Grade: 8/10

Available for purchase on Amazon

There’s also a live-action version that I’ve never seen:

 

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Maybe I’ll get my hands on it on day?