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…
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?