as a quick excuse EXPLANATION: I generally don’t like sports manga. And despite the domination of series such as Haikyuu, Kuroko and Daiya in the current anime/manga fan landscape, I like to imagine that there are others that are like me…. others who find sports manga tedious for a variety of reasons.
And thus, this list was born out of me doing backflips around the definition of what counts as a “sport.” Basically, it came down to this: if the manga takes on a structure that is standard of a sports manga, or people are competing for something, I decided it was a sport!!!
Additionally, I tried to find manga that subverted a major thing that I don’t like about sports manga, and that is a complete lack of female characters. You can expect most of these titles to have a strong presence of female characters in the plot (purely fueled by my bitterness at how much of a misogynist furudate is) !!!!
Anyways, titles and basic explanations under the cut!
Princess Jellyfish aired in Fall 2010. Exactly five years ago. In the years since then, we’ve had exactly SIX full josei* TV anime series: Chihayafuru (2011 & 2013), Bunny Drop (2011), Kids on the Slope (2012), Natsuyuki Rendezvous (2012), Uta Koi (2012), and Polar Bear Cafe (2012-2013). NOTICE THAT NONE OF THOSE AIRED IN 2014 OR 2015. It has been two years since a josei anime last aired (unless someone can correct me).
But the drought has ended - WE HAVE A NEW ONE COMING THIS WINTER 2016: Shōwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjū. Be sure to watch it! Spread the word! If you get an official stream, watch the heck out of it! And on a side note, it looks like it could be really interesting; it’s historical and focuses on drama more than romance. And the original manga won some awards - which is probably the only reason they’re willing to adapt it, tbh. But the point is to support it, even if it’s not 100% perfect, because that raises the chance of more josei anime in future!
*For those who don’t know what josei refers to: it’s non-yaoi manga/anime blatantly targeted to adult women. Of course, anyone can enjoy anything, and there are many similar stories targeted to other demographics, etc., etc. But it’s important to support josei anime - anime that sells itself as just for women. It has a reputation of not being very popular and being harder to sell, and when certain demographics and genres don’t sell as well, they tend to make less of them in the future.
And support josei manga in English too. We don’t get much that isn’t primarily romance/smut.