Anime: Terms All Anime/Manga Fans Should Know


It’s now around 12:30 AM by the time I’m writing this (usually I could go later) and earlier I was scrolling through the internet kind of bored-like, even though I had stuff more important to do. For one, I probably should’ve been finishing that anime series I’ve started, and dropped. (Even though I promised myself I’d continue it.) Not to mention I needed to read some review copies for a few reviews later on…

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But I still wasted my time… Because YouTube…

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However I decided to do one productive thing, and that was to make a post. And surprise, surprise… it’s an anime post.

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Sorry in advanced for memes… Midnight Icebreaker is The Meme Queen and watches pointless, but entertaining videos online with no regards of doing anything productive.

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She also loves gifs and sarcasm…

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Okay, now this is venturing into the Harry Potter category.

Anyhow, I will give you a cookie emoji in the comments if you still love me after this. (The memes can get cringey, even I admit this…) Midnight Icebreaker is a troublesome person.

Half of the memes I can’t recall where they’re from. ๐Ÿ˜…

Let’s get on with the post!

These terms are all in my own words. You can look them all up if you want to later, that is fine.

It’s just like every synopsis of my reviews, basically. (I write those. If they’re italicized then I didn’t.)


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Definition: Nounโ€”A person affiliated with watching anime and reading manga. Genuinely they also like to collect merch from certain anime fandoms.ย 

Any anime fan would generally call themselves an otaku, it is what it is. This word is very commonly thrown around, and has been heard by most (if not all) anime fans.

In some cases, some people would see this term as an insult (unlike another word, but I won’t mention it), so they don’t generally use this term. However, almost everyone uses it, so it’s hard to find anyone who doesn’t.

Shounen (or Shลnen)

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Definition: Noun (but can be an adjective by they way you use it)โ€”A genre of anime/manga made for the young boy demographic.

Some shounen series I can name off the top of my head (which I haven’t watched, mind you) are My Hero Academia, One Piece, Dragon Ball, and Naruto.

Many shounen are action based to appeal to young boys, but they’re just as enjoyable for girls to watch as well.

Take Noragami, it’s shounen, but I still love it, so there.

Shoujo (or Shลjo)

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Definition: Noun (but can be an adjective by they way you use it)โ€”A genre ofย anime/manga made for the young girl demographic.

Some I can name off (some I’ve watched, and some I haven’t) are Ouran Highschool Host Club, Sailor Moon, Kamisama Kiss, and Maid Sama.

Shoujo anime shows are most likely animated romantic comedies. They’re cute to watch, but still also very enjoyable for the young boy demographic.

If you are a young boy who likes and appreciates shoujo anime/manga then you are doing everything right. ๐Ÿ˜Š


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Definition: Noun (but can be an adjective by they way you use it)โ€”Aย genre ofย anime/manga appealing to boys in their older teens onto adulthood.

Some I can think of (and still need to watch) are Monster, Erased, Mushi-shi, and Berserk. (Pretty sure xxxHolic is one, it’s not bad, I just didn’t finish the first season because I started Inuyasha…)

These are more plot or psychological. They are certainly more mature, and can be enjoyed by anyone as well.


(There is no meme, I couldn’t find one. ๐Ÿ˜ญ)

Definition: Noun (but can be an adjective by they way you use it)โ€”Aย genre ofย anime/manga appealing to girls in their older teens onto adulthood.

Some I can think of (but still haven’t watched) are Nana andย Princess Jellyfish.

How I think of Josei, is the equivalent of the Women’s Literature genre. (I don’t know, mainly around the same concepts of Me Before You.)

These are more plot andย psychological based, but focused around some romantic story line. They are enjoyable for anyone, just like seinen.


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Definition: Noun (but can be an adjective by they way you use it)โ€”Aย genre ofย anime/manga revolving around BL (also known as Boy Love) for mature audiences, written by women for other women.

(The last part I didn’t actually know.)

I can’t really name any anime that are yaoi because some venture into the shounen ai category, which I’ll mention later.

I haven’t seen any, so I wouldn’t know if it ventures into the shounen ai category or not. (Sorry I can’t recommend anything, but I bet Google has some if you look.)


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(Yurio… You okay there?)

Definition: Noun (but can be an adjective by they way you use it)โ€”Aย genre ofย anime/manga revolving around GL (also known as Girl Love) for mature audiences.

It’s just the female counterpart of yaoi.

I can’t name off any shows, because I don’t really know any. (Sorry that I’m a poor information source.) That and, like yaoi, I don’t know which shows venture into the shoujo ai category.


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Definition: Noun (but can be an adjective by they way you use it)โ€”A “genre” ofย anime/manga that focuses on BL, but is more fluff and is less mature.

I guess the real difference is the age type that both yaoi and shounen ai are aiming for. Yaoi is more mature and leans towards more adult audiences, whereas shounen ai is just cute and leans towards younger audiences. (That’s just my general impression, age probably isn’t a large factor.) (I looked it up, and got varying answers arguing or agreeing with my point, so I’m still leaving what I personally think it is.)

It’s not quite a “genre”, yaoi is, but shounen-ai isn’t really recognized as one by most people. (Or so I hear, I still think it’s a genre.) (It’s more like a category, one that’s for shoujo fans.)

Either way, if you go to manga sites, you’ve probably seen it up there somewhere. So it’s always nice to know a little more about it. ๐Ÿ™‚ (Just know that this term is not typically used, but it’s still out there in regards of finding certain types of anime/manga. I just thought it would be handy to know it.)


(Couldn’t find any memes.)

Definition: Noun (but can be an adjective by they way you use it)โ€”A “genre” ofย anime/manga that focuses on GL, but is more fluff and is less mature.

This is the female counterpart to shounen-ai. Not everyone recognizes it as a separate genre, so it’s like a branch of another genre. And it isn’t as mature as shows that are yuri.

If you’ve been to any manga sites, you’d have seen this too. It’s just nice to know more about it. ๐Ÿ™‚


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Definition: Nounโ€” Self-published fanfiction or works with original characters.

I think that definition doesn’t need any more clarifications. It’s just manga that’s been published by the author that either contains their own original characters and plot, or is based off of another manga or anime.

Basically, I just imagine it’s mostly (but not all) fanfiction, but a little more professional. (It’s published for the public to see, not hiding away in the darkest corners of the internet…)

That’s it for this list (I just mostly covered genres today). I actually wrote half of this list at 12 AM, then a quarter at 2AM the next night, then the rest three days later. ๐Ÿ˜… So Midnight Icebreaker wasn’t always around.

I fact-checked most things (ones I wasn’t sure of that is) but if you feel like I misinterpreted something, please shout out to me in the comments!

I know I left some terms out (and for good reason) but if you want to tell me in the comments which ones I may have forgotten, I might be able to make a second part to this post. (Depending on the amount I forgot.)

Thanks for sticking around! ๐Ÿ˜„

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45 thoughts on “Anime: Terms All Anime/Manga Fans Should Know

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      1. What I meant was that it was funny you used him ( a character named Yuri) with the Yuri category.
        Funny story, I once heard Yuri on Ice being described as ‘homoerotic ice-skating’ once, and I thought it was girl on girl stuff because of the ‘yuri’ in the name.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. ๐Ÿ˜‚ I honestly didn’t realize I did that. I’m not that clever! (It works even more now.)
        I can see how that would be, haha. (If I had a quarter for every misleading title I’ve read…)

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Lol, I also have Erased (because it’s a mystery with time travel) and Mushi-Shi (someone once said it gives them a Ghibli vibe, so now I HAVE to check it out) on my to be watched list.
    And Monster, heck yes! (It’s slow, really slow. I started it months ago and haven’t finished, lol, but it’s worth it).

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Love this post! It actually made me want to go watch some anime/read some manga right now XD
    I don’t remember any specific terms right now, even though I know they’re missing… But I’d love a part 2 if you can get a nice list!
    Being The Meme Queen is awesome, don’t ever let anyone ever tell you otherwise ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Haha, and I’m doing that now, so I beat you to it. ๐Ÿ˜‰
      Thanks for telling me! I might plan to do another one. I know I left some terms out, but I can’t think of any either. When I can, I’ll probably make another post. ๐Ÿ™‚
      Haha, thank you! ๐Ÿ˜„

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great post! I’m surprised I’m actually familiar with most of these terms (Except for seinen, josei, and doujinshi). I haven’t watched much yaoi (I think YOI and Love Stage are the only two) or yuri (I got nothing…) anime, but I’ve run across a few BL and GL anime that I really enjoyed! Shounen and Shoujo are my favorite types of anime/manga though ๐Ÿ˜€ And I love all your memes and gifs. They feed my sarcastic nature LOL.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I’m happy that you knew some of the stuff on this list, and also that you probably learned something new! ๐Ÿ™‚ I haven’t seen any yuri or yaoi (actually I’ve only seen just YOI if that counts) anime either. I’ve read some shounen-ai though. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I really like shounen and shoujo too! I read a lot of shoujo, but I’m trying to bring in more shounen. And I’m glad you liked all the memes! ๐Ÿ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I really don’t know how to classify YOI, tbh. Don’t know if it’s yaoi or shounen-ai (which I’ve seen much more of). LoL, I’m the opposite. I’m trying to read/watch more shoujo since I watch so much shounen haha.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Wellll, it IS a sports anime so good thinking haha. I’ve seen so many. Some of my favorites are Ouran, Blue Spring Ride. Maid-Sama, Kamisama Kiss, The World is Still Beautiful, Snow White With the Red Hair, My Little Monster, Special A, and Sailor Moon (if that one counts).

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I haven’t seen Blue Spring Ride, The World is Still Beautiful, Special A, or Sailor Moon yet. (I need to watch all of those.) Kamisama Kiss is one of may favorites. ๐Ÿ™‚ Right now I’m watching Cheeky Angel (which is an older anime but pretty good after the first few episodes), and I hope to continue Welcome to the Ballroom (which is another sports anime; it recently streamed before the airing so I don’t know when I’ll watch the other episodes, but I plan to continue it). Other shoujo I’ve seen are Yamada and the Seven Witches, Anohana, and Inuyasha (I think that’s shoujo). I want to get into more shounen, so I plan on watching My Hero Academia sometime and going from there.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I highly recommend all four of them! Especially Sailor Moon, of course. Both the old and new version of it. Isn’t Kamisama Kiss the cutest show? I have such a huge crush on Tomoe haha. I just saw a poster on Cheeky Angel but don’t know a thing about it. How is it?? I’ve recently learned of Welcome to the Ballroom but haven’t heard much about it. Is it good? I haven’t watched the other three you mentioned. Well, I’ve seen a bit of Inuyasha but haven’t continued on with it. And I was thinking of watching My Hero Academia, too! I also need to watch season 2 of Attack on Titan

        Liked by 1 person

      5. I really like older anime so it’ll be easy to get into it. ๐Ÿ˜€ I like Tomoe too! Who doesn’t?! Cheeky angel is about popular girl named Megumi who’s actually a boy that has been turned into a girl 6 years prior by a magic book. But one of the delinquents in school sees her and thinks she’s a girl and instantly likes her. It’s a really cute romcom, and I can’t go into much without spoiling it, but it’s really cute after the first episode. (I got hooked on it, haha.) Welcome to the Ballroom is about Takaru, a high-school student who doesn’t know what to do with his future. He then stumbles onto a dance studio and meets one of the professional dancers there (who’s kinda famous too). Then from there you can tell that he has an interest in ballroom dancing by the title. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I really liked the first episode, so I can’t wait for the rest! Anohana is really cute, but also really sad so you will need a box of tissues. I binged the first 6 seasons of Inuyasha, and it does kinda drag, but it was still enjoyable. Yamada and the Seven Witches is about a delinquent who learns that he might have strange abilities, but that there are “witches” in the school he’s in who all have one magic power. He and a few of those witches have to find the others to solve the mystery/history surrounding their power’s existence. (I can’t remember a lot from that series, but it was an okay show.) I hope you like My Hero Academia! I hear it’s funny and heartwarming so I can’t wait. And I haven’t seen AOT yet, but I hope you enjoy the 2 season!

        Liked by 1 person

      6. I’m actually not too keen on older anime unless it’s Dragon Ball or some older shounens. But only because I got into anime once all the art was at Project K (have you seen that one??) level beautiful. I’ve become spoiled haha. Cheeky Angel sounds too cute! I’m in the mood for a shoujo so that might be really fun to watch right about now. I already promised my friend I’d watch Haikyuu for my next sports anime, but I’ll put Welcome to the Ballroom on my list for afterwards! Oh! I just remembered seeing clips and articles about Anohana. Everyone said it’s really sad so I’ve been avoiding it LOL. When I’m ready to have my heart broken, I’ll reach for that one first. And one day I’ll finish Inuyasha. Yamada and the Seven Witches sounds really fun! I don’t know why but it kind of reminds me of Magi. Which, by the way, I LOVE. Let me know what you think of My Hero Academia! I’m watching Voltron right now so I think I might move on to Hunter x Hunter and Cheeky Angel next ๐Ÿ˜€ And thanks! I really hope so too!

        Liked by 1 person

      7. I wasn’t that into older anime either, but I ended up liking them after Inuyasha. Cheeky angel was made during the early 2000s, and the art isn’t the best, but it’s really cute and worth it after awhile! I have not seen Project K yet, I’ll put it on my mental list of things to check out! ๐Ÿ™‚ Haikyuu is my next sports anime too! I promised my friend who’s a fan that I’d watch it; I hope you like it! Anohana wasn’t that sad until the very last episode, but it does have some depressing parts here and there, but nothing extreme. I need to watch Magi, it’s another thing on my list of things I need to watch. I’m glad you like it, I probably won’t watch it until a few others, but I plan to some day! (I’ve seen the clips, I want to see it!) I WANT TO GET INTO VOLTRON! I accidentally got into the fandom, even though I haven’t seen an episode yet. ๐Ÿ˜… (I didn’t think it was possible to fangirl over a show I haven’t watched yet, but I am doing it now, haha.) I planned to watch it during the summer, but haven’t yet. I’m nervous to start it (I’m afraid of not liking it, which is crazy) but I’ll probably start soon, I’m starting to cave. I’ve seen only one episode on Hunter x Hunter and thought it was cute, so I hope you like it!

        Liked by 1 person

      8. Yes! Please watch K. That show is my kryptonite lol. I hope you enjoy Haikyuu, too! ๐Ÿ˜€ And Magi is just tons of fun. It’ll definitely put a smile on your face! I went to the anime expo in LA and feels in love with Shiro from Voltron because all of the amazing art prints of him and the team haha. I needed to see it after that! You should definitely watch it! It’s definitely one of the better cartoons out there right now. And thanks! I’ll probably start on Hunter x Hunter when I’m done with Voltron. Fingers crossed that I’ll like it! โค

        Liked by 1 person

      9. Lucky! You got to got to Anime Expo! What was the best thing you saw? Did you cosplay? I wasn’t able to go, so I watched the streams from Twitch. But I was lucky enough to be able to view some of the panels. I’m definitely watching Voltron! Fingers crossed that you like it too! ๐Ÿ˜€

        Liked by 1 person

      10. Yeah! It was my first time ๐Ÿ˜€ Best thing I saw was this guy dressed up as General Grievous from Star Wars. It was huge and spectacular! There was also some phenomenal art prints, particularly a stall with Miyazaki prints. They were gorgeous!! I didn’t cosplay myself but it was cool seeing everyone else dressed up ๐Ÿ˜€ My friend dressed up as Allura from Voltron actually! I didn’t catch any of the panels, though. Hope there were a few you found interesting?

        Liked by 1 person

      11. I’m glad you had so much fun! From the stream, I saw a lot of really neat and creative cosplays! They showed a bit of artists’ alley, but I didn’t get to see much. The Miyazaki stall sounds really fun! I always love to look at art and draw my own, so I think it was really cool that a bunch of artist could be there. And yes! Allura! A friend of mine is collecting parts for her Lance cosplay. ๐Ÿ™‚ My favorite panel was probably either the My Hero Academia panel or the Trigger Studio drawing panel. My Hero Academia because they had the artist come and draw some of the art for some of the audience members, and the Trigger panel for the live art drawing. (They drew Steven Universe and Big Hero 6 as well as characters from their own anime shows. โค)

        Liked by 1 person

      12. I’m glad you managed to catch a few of the panels online! I didn’t manage to attend any. I was stuck in artist alley, which was so cool but really overwhelming, too. I really need to start watching My Hero Academia. It seems all the rage. I recently binged Castlevania on Netflix. Seen that one yet? Both those panels sound amazing ๐Ÿ˜€ Love to watch live drawing sessions!


      13. I’m glad you were still able to have fun. Artists’ alley looked very crowded, but I wish I got to see more. ๐Ÿ™‚ I need to watch it too, but I’m taking a small break of watching anime. Once I start up again, I’ll probably start My Hero Academia. I haven’t seen Castlevania but I saw it the other day when I was looking through the anime section on Netflix. It looks pretty good, did you enjoy it? I love drawing sessions too! I always learn something new whenever I watch them.

        Liked by 1 person

      14. Thanks! ๐Ÿ˜€ And yeah, Artists’ Alley was incredibly crowded. Had such a hard time moving around but it was still pretty cool! And I’ve taken such a long break from anime that I’ve recently started watching again! I’ll finish Voltron, and then move on to Hunter x Hunter and my Hero Academia! And I really liked Castevania! The animation was good and the story is really interesting. It’s just so short. 4 episodes! And only about 25 minutes each ๐Ÿ˜ฆ But it was worth it, I guess haha. It’s really cool that you draw! I can only copy images!

        Liked by 1 person

      15. At least you and your friend still had a good time. ๐Ÿ˜€ Have fun watching HxH and My Hero Academia! Also I’d like to hear your final thoughts about Voltron!Also only 4 episodes! That’s incredibly short! But if it’s worth it, I’ll probably add it to my list too. ๐Ÿ™‚ And that’s still drawing! Think of it like you’re using pictures as a reference. ๐Ÿ˜€

        Liked by 1 person

      16. Thank you! I’ll definitely let you know what I think of Voltron. I think it’s safe to say that it’s one of the better animated series I’ve watched in a while! Let me know you’re thoughts on Castlevania once you get around to it! And that makes me feel so much better about my drawing skills LOL. Thanks! ๐Ÿ˜€

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Great post! It’s been a while since I’ve been in the anime/manga sphere (not for lack of wanting, just more so from laziness), so I wasn’t sure how many of these I would remember, but I was pleased to find that I remembered all of them except doujinshi. ๐Ÿ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

  5. “… whereas shounen ai is just cute and leans towards younger audiences”

    I love your post but I think there are shounen ai works that also cater the general audience. Antique Bakery and What Did You Eat Yesterday feature older leads, and there are also a lot of yaoi mangas that have high schoolers as the leads.

    Uhm.. How about bara? It’s actually a demographic created by gay men geared towards the gay community. This is similar to yaoi, only more uhm.. you know.. you can google it.

    Thank you for the post though. It’s informative for newcomers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Okay! Thank you for telling me, I got differing answers on that one and wasn’t so sure. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Oo, now you’re testing me, I haven’t heard of bara. That’s definitely going to go on my next terms post, thank you!

      And my third thanks, haha, thank you! I’m trying to help newcomers understand a little more about the terms that are most common, and also those who are probably thinking of starting anime, who don’t know where to start. I’m glad you enjoyed the post!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you thought so!! It was an assumption about what audience it was directed for, but I hope it gave you a good idea! Thank you and no problem! I’ll definitely make more in the future!


  6. It’s so great finding a fellow anime nerd. I just wrote a poem/rap persuading anime haters to try it out. I’d love it if you checked it out.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I just read your post and found it interesting. Don’t worry, there are still plenty of Anime that I haven’t seen yet, but want to, such as Berserk (yeah, I know that this one is very popular), Magica Madoka, Durarara, just to name a few. You should watch Kamisama Kiss, its cute and I love the characters. Sad that the Manga is coming to a close. Later.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I still need to watch all of those anime too, even though they’re very popular and I should’ve watched them already. ๐Ÿ˜… I’ve already seen Kamisama Kiss, you’re right, it’s really cute and the characters are great! (Ah, Tomoe.) I heard the manga was ending, I’m going to binge read it sometime. ๐Ÿ˜„


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