Let’s Talk About 2020 – A Yuri Recap

With this post, I would like to put aside all of the bad that has happened in 2020 and instead focus on what people that come here actually want to read about, yuri stuff. So why not forget about this horrible year for a second and focus our mind on the few good things that happened within the past 12 months?

I’ll try to do this in the most chronologically correct order my brain can come up with, but I think I’m not the only one that kind of sees 2020 as this big pile of inconceivable time. I’ll give it my best though!

So as I freshly emerged from 2019, still playing my beloved Fire Emblem: Three Houses and starting the new year while still shipping Edelgard with both myself and Byleth, things couldn’t have been better, to be honest. There were quite a few things to be excited for, new visual novels that got announced, new yuri(ish) anime, and to top it all off, tons and tons of new yuri manga from all over the world.

So, as mentioned, my first big yuri moment was brought to me by something I picked up at the end of 2019. Even after many months, Fire Emblem: Three Houses hooked me. Despite the fact that I could hardly stomach not choosing my beloved Edelgard as my bride for each route, this game still delivered some great yuri moments even outside of my favorite couple, and even outside of the game. I would say, for the most part, in January, I was probably still reading Edeleth fanfiction, and to those of you that have never read that, I strongly encourage you to catch up with that~

After the hype had died down, and while waiting for the expansion pack, I yet again took the time to browse for new yuri things to read, and I stumbled upon a webtoon called Mage and Demon Queen by Color_LES. What first seemed to be a fun little read, over the course of 2020, actually became something along the lines of my favorite “manga” of the whole year. Hell, after having waited for what felt like years, we even finally got a kiss—or should I say—quite a few of them! Seriously, reading this was a blast, and I can’t wait for the next season.

Moving on, my next obsession would have been Animal Crossing which we skip for the obvious reason that it has nothing to do with yuri, but I still wanted to mention it 😛 With that out of the way, I think the next highlight of the year would have been the visual novel A Summers’ End – Hong Kong 1986. While this was surely not the only yuri game of 2020, it’s actually the only one that I finished and that I enjoyed to an extend that is hard to put into words. With that said, I admittedly didn’t pick up too many VNs this year and the only other one I’m waiting for – and was hoping for a release in 2020 – still is not out yet. That one would be Bloom by Razzart Visual. I wonder how much longer it will take…unbenannt

During summer, as I feel like a lot of people did, I re-watched all of Avatar, starting with The Last Airbender and moving on to Legend of Korra. I feel like a lot of people did, and for good reason as both series are just amazing. To my surprise, my timing was just right, as after having finished both series, I learned of the existence of 2 books, featuring the life of Avatar Kyoshi, the earthbending Avatar before Roku. Those two, namely The Rise of Kyoshi and The Shadow of Kyoshi, were seriously interesting and even exciting reads as they feature a bisexual Avatar that for the run of both books is accompanied by her fierce firebending girlfriend. And what made this as awesome as it is, this time, they didn’t shy away from any obvious display of their love for each other. Better even, they fully embraced it! This is seriously a must-read for all of you Avatar fans out there!

As for other manga, I remember two specific works from Japanese artists that really left an impression. The first one would be It’s a Detached Relationship by Flowerchild Ueda. It’s dark at times and deals with some heavy content, but I really fell in love with the characters and this strangely wrong, yet oh so right, relationship that the story focuses on. In contrast, another manga that I really loved this year would be Crescent Moon and Doughnuts by Usui Shio, which is just a really cute and heartwarming story about office ladies falling in love (soon…). I guess I’m really getting old, seeing that stories with office workers are now way more appealing then stories of high school girls. My thirties, here I come…. 😀

I could honestly list so many more titles, as I think that 2020 delivered quite a few new amazing works and what I feel like a lot more variety, when it comes to works outside of Japan. I think I have about at least 5 apps of manga/comic/webtoon readers, where alongside of our trusty Dynasty Reader, I’m following so, so many more works from all over the world. This growth had started years ago really, but it was mostly Japanese and maybe a few Korean works, and we now see quality works from basically everywhere. Well, maybe 2020 gave quite a few of us some more time to draw anyway…

Also, I’m a little afraid to ask, but what’s up with the high number of yuri works featuring brothels and prostitution? Like, where did that come from?? 😀

And what better way to continue the year than with more gay western media, that being She-Ra and the Princesses of Power? What started out as a desperate pick because I just didn’t know what else to watch, turned out to be the best thing I have watched all year. I pretty much remember binge-watching all five seasons in a time that I’m too embarrassed to state here. Well, long story short, the sheer gayness of this masterpiece left me happy and satisfied for quite a while. Truly, I should have gotten over the fact that this is supposed to be a kids show and simply went for this sooner, as it really is a milestone in lesbian media. I really can only highly recommend this one to you guys, as it actually was the one thing this year I enjoyed the most~

Moving on from me just gushing over things I enjoyed this year, let’s also not forget about yuri anime. However, unfortunately, I can’t say we had that many. Most of which just featured subtext, while the big titles only appeared during the final few months of the year with titles like Adachi to Shimamura and Vlad Love, with the first episode of the latter already having aired. You could say that this is not really the best outcome for a year, but while Adachi to Shimamura was a pretty enjoyable show in general, I have high expectations for Vlad Love, and it’s pretty great to know that we will start out 2021 with another yuri title to look forward to, that being the anime adaptation of Otherside Picnic. This was actually one of the books, or novels, that I had picked up this year, and I gotta say, this is probably going to be a really interesting adaptation. I just hope that they will amp up the yuri a little, as the novels (as far as I got) didn’t really show that much yuri, but it’s at least heavily hinted at.

Last, but certainly not least, 2020 surprised me in one more way and presented yuri to me in a very unexpected place. I am almost ashamed of admitting it, but I fell pretty deep into that rabbit hole that is VTubers. Seriously, it all just started with one stupid video that popped up on my recommendations on Youtube, and from there, it really went down for me quickly. Now, I’m hardcore addicted to too many of these VTubers, but to my surprise, quite a lot of them either take on the role of a gay girl or are simply straight-out queer. I don’t know if that is 100% correct, but it does feel as if one of the qualifications for becoming a VTubers seems to be for them to be queer to some extent, and I love that! Be it the cute interactions between Korone and Okayu, Miko drooling over pretty female characters in games, Tomoe and Kana basically making out while streaming, or Marine talking about wanting to do lewd things to her Hololive colleagues – it’s a blast and something a lot of people consider it to be a yuri goldmine. Rightfully so, might I add.

I know that it seems like I always end up recommending you guys watch or read certain things, but with this specific rabbit hole, I’m actually advising you all to stay away as far as possible, as this will probably steal all of your free time and make you sickly addicted to these characters. Seriously, someone, send help! I don’t know how to stop anymore…

And while I’m still stuck in this VTuber mess, another thing I’m more or less addicted to right now would be the mobile/PC/console game Genshin Impact. I know that this one does not feature any confirmed yuri characters, but it sure does leave a lot of room for shipping. And shipping is what people have been doing a lot! Be it Jean x Lisa, Ningguang x Beidou, Lumine x Amber or Jean x Lena K. It really is a great place for yuri shippers just as myself~ So here’s for hoping that maybe one of these ships will turn into canon in 2021!

I think that pretty much sums it up for me, and to my surprise, after having written all that, 2020 actually seems to have been a good year for me, at least yuri-wise.

So, what yuri things have helped you stay sane and survive 2020?

29 thoughts on “Let’s Talk About 2020 – A Yuri Recap

  1. This year really has been a wild ride but having yuri help me out through it definitely helped a lot. The biggest thing in terms of anime was ofc Adachi to Shimamura for sure, it was super adorable and just so fluffy and I loved it!!!

    There is also the many subtext stuff like Love Live and such which I love. Then I managed to get some yuri VNs when they were on sale and I loved them especially Highway Blossoms and the dlc!!!

    And when it comes to manga, Citrus+ was always there to pick up my spirits even if it still has its usual angst moments, I still love it and ofc YuzuMei is the best!!!

    And ofc coming onto the blog and chatting from time to time has helped a lot as well, I really do love the blog a lot!!!

    So yeah needless to say despite the very horrible year that this year was, I still managed to love yuri and I really do hope next year we can get even more yuri related things!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Always glad to see Lena doing another post! 😀 That said this year we were spoiled with yuri manga. With so many series being licensed all over the world I am pretty sure I’m pretty sure I spent close to $200 on licensed yuri manga alone this year! 😛 I’m hoping 2021 brings a whole lot more!

    I agree with you on the vtubers Lena. I also ran into a Korone video while on lock down and all I have been doing is allowing myself to fall down this rabbit hole ever since and I haven’t looked back! 😀 All of them ar so much fun and too damn cute but yes, the fact that there is yuri happening among them really helps to drag me down this hole even further! Did you see Kiara’s The Sims 4 stream? She basically made her fantasy of being with Calli a reality! XD You have to watch that stream it’s a gold mine of yuri content. Also I told you about Kana and Tomoe but I just found out about another Nijisanji pairing. I found this video a few days ago showing the vtuber Yamagami Karuta having a courtship with a female staffer at Nijisanji! Check it out, it’s too wholesome, it’s a yuri manga come to life! I only hope 2021 brings a whole lot more vtuber yuri for us!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Good to see you chimeko 🙂
      I had a feeling you’d join me for more VTuber content and you didn’t fail me 😀
      I actually saw some fanart for Kiara’s Sims stream, so I definitely have to watch that too. Also, thanks to you, I’m now a hardcore fan of Tomoe and Kana.
      Now let’s see what else you found 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • Always glad to help! 😀 Also I saw that you had to update your post. WordPress being an asshole huh? 😛

        About your question on brothels and prostitutes in yuri works recently, I think it has to do with the fact that in Japan, certain brothels and companies have been taking advantage of a loophole in Japanese law regarding things like that. Basically same sex brothels and prostitution is “legal” as a result of this loophole. I saw a while back a post from Amano Shuninta’s Twitter something about this. I can’t be 100% certain as to what was said as I used Google translate, and we all know how reliable that can be, but I think she posted a link to an interviewed of a company that was a lesbian escort service. Pretty sure her latest work was inspired by this. I found an article on this that should explain it a little better:

        https://soranews24.com/2016/04/28/same-sex-prostitution-business-not-illegal-in-japan-untouched-by-police/

        Liked by 1 person

        • WordPress has been the worst! They “updated” their post editor and now everything is at least twice as hard to find and things disappear for no reason… When you try to put the missing parts back in, it basically deleted other parts. I can’t tell how many times I had to update this post in order to get all of what i had prepared to where it belonged 😀
          Also, wow that’s super interesting!
          Honestly, I thought it was just a coincidence that we saw so many works with that theme. I thought that maybe there was another magazine with a special monthly issue that simply only featured stories like that, but it’s so much more!
          Huh … I’m glad Amano Shuninta jumped onto that train though. Her most recent work seems promising 😛

          Liked by 1 person

  3. The main Yuri thing that stood out for me personally was Adachi to Shimamura. I checked it out because of the anime and ended up reading all 9 volumes of the light novels in just over a week and now the series has overtaken Bloom into you as my favourite Yuri series (both are still great though). Adachi is the most relatable fictional character I’ve ever come across. Aside from loving the light novels, the anime was also a pretty good adaption, even if it unfortunately ended right before all the best parts… so here’s hoping for a second season!

    Liked by 4 people

    • I don’t really know how well this anime did, but I saw it covered online quite a bit so I have my hopes up that this anime got the recognition it deserves and thus will end up receiving a second season~

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Magia Record , Assault Lily (watching it atm) , Lapis ReLights (still need to finish it) , my pc and phone died so i have to re check what yuri animes i had for this year , if i forgot something.
    Othercide Picnic will be insane.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. If genshin impact got your interest, I would *greatly* recommend honkai impact 3, from the same studio – not only is almost every character canonically gay (sometimes subtly, sometimes extremely blatantly, and sometimes with intense emotions), but the main story + animated cutscenes are some of the most impactful and gripping writing/presentation of any game I ever played.

    You gotta be able to stomach extreme amounts of angst and distress (it’s not at all a happy plot), but at least the main story is basically a must-play if you like yuri, I can’t recommend it enough.

    Like

    • It is not yuri , Kallen and Sakura might be but most characters are bisexual , the story is a fucking mess no idea what are you playing , same with the writing that its straight up trash , not to mention the gameplay is shit , literally.And it is P2W as much as it can be.Animations of that game are normal and happen every century also.
      The father of idk how it is called the plot armor character , kiana something , even tries to flirt with her , his own daughter , this pedophile shit is garbage too.

      Like

      • If genshin impact got your interest, I would *greatly* recommend honkai impact 3, from the same studio – not only is almost every character canonically gay (sometimes subtly, sometimes extremely blatantly, and sometimes with intense emotions), but the main story + animated cutscenes are some of the most impactful and gripping writing/presentation of any game I ever played.

        You gotta be able to stomach extreme amounts of angst and distress (it’s not at all a happy plot), but at least the main story is basically a must-play if you like yuri, I can’t recommend it enough.

        Like

      • That’s, uh, quite the take, and certainly not one i can agree with on pretty much any level

        Are you sure you’re talking about the same game? Did you have honkai impact 2 in mind, which is notable for being a badly made meme, completely unlike 3 which is when mihoyo started taking their games seriously?

        (also i completely messed up on my phone, so sorry about the duplicate messages)

        Like

  6. That’s, uh, quite the take, and certainly not one i can agree with on pretty much any level

    Are you sure you’re talking about the same game? Did you have honkai impact 2 in mind, which is notable for being a badly made meme, completely unlike 3 which is when mihoyo started taking their games seriously?

    Like

    • I haven’t played Honkai Impact so far, but I’ve seen some trailers for it that looked pretty damn great. What kept me from downloading it though were some reviews I read online.
      If it does have some more or less obvious yuri, then I think I can look past some flaws at least 😀

      Like

  7. Nice review of a not very reviewable or enjoyable year. Curious reaction to Vtubers? and She-Ra? Really and truly? For my personal tastes, there was only one work worth the effort and, of course, that would be “Adachi to Shimamura”. Adachi is just such a wonderful character and very relatable. For most, it is difficult to express clearly one’s feels, and that makes Adachi so beloved. Shimamura on the other hand is about as dense as they come. Keep wishing that Shimamura would just grab hold of Adachi, and shake her true feelings out into the open. But oblivious is oblivious! Have stayed clear of the manga on this one, because the anime is just so good. Hope remains at the end of day for a second season.

    Like

  8. “Also, I’m a little afraid to ask, but what’s up with the high number of yuri works featuring brothels and prostitution? Like, where did that come from??” NO IDEA! But I have enjoyed ‘Asumi-chan is Interested in Lesbian Brothels!’ so far; its surprisingly lewd.

    Lets see, on the stuff OP brought up: I haven’t played FE3H but I’d like to. I don’t own the necessary hardware though – Im a PC Girl through and through. I still haven’t watched Avatar/Korra, though I do plan on watching the latter at least. Im still early on in She-Ra, Im sorta interested in it but at the same time it hasnt really *grabbed* me. AdaShima left me disappointed and hollow, which I spoke about in another post (under the season review IIRC). Mage & Demon Queen I’ve read the first chapter or two and I want to get back to it, but I just havent been in the mood to read the last few months (I hadn’t heard of it before august) – however, a good friend of mine has written a fairly lengthy fanfic for it, which is further incentive for me to check it out.

    I have thusfar managed to avoid the VTuber rabbit-hole, however I’ve put at least 120 hours into Genshin Impact, if not more, and have been hoovering up fan art wherever I can. I have Lumine as my main, and ship her with Lisa and Ningguang ❤

    "So, what yuri things have helped you stay sane and survive 2020?"
    Lets see. After being an anime watcher for (as of jan 1st, 2021) 35+ years, I finally got into reading manga. Yep, it took me that long. And it took Yagate Kimi ni Naru to hook me – I didnt read YagaKimi till late 2019, and it was what inspired me to search out others, thanks to a couple of Discord servers I am in (thank you YagaKimi and Citrus fan-servers!). I havent read a *lot* of different series, but its been mostly yuri manga that Ive discovered and enjoyed.

    Also, and more importantly, thanks to finally getting help with some mental health issues and ADHD I have finally been able to engage my creativity to write – two YagaKimi fanfics (~160-180 pages so far and still going) plus some non-anime/manga writing that would fall 100% into yuri, if a Canadian author can make use of that term that is? Its been a great outlet and a way for me to stay mostly sane. (They can be found on AO3)

    Well, that and Genshin Impact and a renewed interest in Civ6 🙂
    ~Alyfox

    Like

  9. Thanks to this post, I am well on my way into the rabbit hole that is Vtubers. After seeing a few clips (mostly yuri) branching from the comments here, I couldn’t even sleep at night thinking about the lives of these Vtubers.

    Unfortunately, Nijisanji’s contents are all in Japanese and being someone with limited knowledge of it, I’ll turn my attention to Hololive en instead. Hopefully, I won’t die at the bottom of this rabbit hole. 😂

    Like

  10. Pingback: The OG-Man Looks Back at Yuri in 2020 | The Yuri Empire

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