In western media, fan service is something along the lines of cameos of other famous actors in a movie or show, but in the world of anime, it is much different. While you may have plenty of experience with fanservice for males, have you ever thought about what fan service is out there for girls?
Fan service is a term coined in anime and manga for servicing the fans, or providing the fans with exactly what they want. Naturally, fan service for females is a lot different than it is for males, but it is rare compared to fan service for males. Women just do not appreciate the same type of fan service that males do; they appreciate nudity and skin just as much as any other, but so many other aspects are important as well. Read on to find out more!
Contrary to popular belief, girls like looking at naked guys, too. Well, maybe not naked, but women do appreciate the male physique and plenty of skin. While not all women are quite as picky in regards to what type of physique the male characters have, it is clear to say that by popular vote, men with slimmer bodies are more popular. Though that doesn't mean they have to be gaunt.
In many reverse harems, the male characters had thinner bodies that are customary to Japanese males. In the more recent years as evidenced by anime like Kamigami no Asobi and Free!, muscles are also becoming a more favorable trait in many male characters. Muscular physiques can be quite eye catching, but strangely enough, when these males are fully clothed, you probably wouldn't have noticed the muscle at all. However, that's what beach scenes, pool scenes, and onsen trips are for! Getting the guys to bare it all.
Which brings me to my next subject: skinship. This is not something that westerners will hear that often, but it is something that females appreciate. Skinship, in its mildest form, can be something like touching someone's arm, holding hands, or patting someone's head. It is a way of bonding with a loved one and it helps females feel more secure.
Skinship can also mean something as kind as wiping off the sweat off of someone's forehead. In a less innocent form, skinship can be something like helping to wash a guy's back that can be quite nerve wracking and have some exciting ramifications! Tokimeki Memorial Girl's Side, an otome game, is known to have a skinship mode where simple touches can create doki-doki moments where the guy is blushing and nervous.
On the other hand, Duel Love is an infamous otome game with a skinship mode, shown after the guys shower, where the player can help the guys towel off and well, the ensuing scene is just something you should not play in public. If you don't know the game, you may have seen Tomoko play it in WataMote!
Some people might not understand something like skinship, but it is a relationship bonding moment between two people so much so that it can even be seen in ecchi harems. It may seem like an ecchi moment, but to the female characters it is an important moment to build a relationship with someone they like.
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: July 2013 - September 2013
Nanase Haruka is a high school student who loves swimming, so much so that he enjoys merely being immersed in water such as in the bath. As a child, Haruka participated in a swimming competition in the relay race with fellow teammates Tachibana Makoto, Hazuki Nagisa, and Matsuoka Rin. After winning, each boy went their separate ways. However, now that they are in high school, they find themselves drawn to each other again as Rin returns from studying abroad.
Since then, Rin has greatly changed. Rin challenges Haruka to a swimming competition when he has returned so Haruka sets out with Makoto, Nagisa, and new swimming club member Ryuugazaki Rei to create the Iwatobi High School Swimming club. Although it has been a while since they have competed, everyone is ready to give it their all and defeat Rin!
There is no anime with as much visual fan service for females than Free! Free! is an anime famous for its vast amounts of male nudity. Well, not quite nudity, but you do get to see a lot of skin in Free! Plus, Free! is filled with many bishounen of all personalities from the shota to the tsundere that you almost forget that there are girls in this anime.
Free! is known for its accurate depiction of musculature that will make you scoff at shounen anime. Even if muscle isn't top of your list of what appeals to you, you can still enjoy watching this anime where the primary clothes are swimsuits and other clothes are nonessential. How many other bishounen anime give you this much eye candy?
Free! Opening & Ending HD
This something that people just don't understand: moe characters exist in males too! Everyone has heard of tsundere, kuudere, and dandere, but they don't realize that it doesn't just apply to female characters. Reverse harems are great places to get a glimpse of these characters and experience all the different moe characters.
Moe characters are a type of fan service because depending on your preferences, can cause quite a few moments of excitement, or what I like to call "doki-doki" moments because your heart goes doki-doki. Thoughts like "what will happen next" are usually what drives these moments and you just have to know. Amnesia is an anime that plays off of these moments that make you want to watch the next episode to know what will happen next. The characters are all so different that you will constantly be wanting to know how they change in each arc and how they will appeal to the heroine.
In a less scary scenario, if you've seen Diabolik Lovers, then you may feel very moe when the brothers force themselves on Yui. It's not an anime for everyone, but this can be quite moe for many people, which is why there is a season 2 out this season! Moe characters give that special thrill that is only moe!
Kiniro no Corda: ~Primo Passo~ (La Corda D'Oro)
- Episodes: 25
- Aired: October 2006 - March 2007
Hino Kahoko attends a school that is divided into two branches: the normal division and the music division. While the normal division's uniforms are gray, the music division's uniforms are white. There is a music competition held every year by the school and while most of the competitors are chosen from the music division, with the help of a fairy that only Kahoko can see, Kahoko finds herself being chosen as the only competitor from the normal branch to compete in the music competition. What's worse is that she doesn't know anything about music. With the help of Lili, the fairy, can Kahoko discover the musician within her?
Kiniro no Corda ~Primo Passo~ is an anime full of beautiful music and bishounen. While Kahoko is more prominent as a female lead, you get to see her build relationships with several bishounen making girls around the world curse that they aren't in her shoes. Well, it's almost possible. Kahoko is your typical shoujo protagonist who's simple, insecure, and kind. Although she isn't musically talented, Kahoko does her best! This makes it easy to imagine yourself being in her place.
There are many guys in this anime and clearly, they hit all the moe character types except for the infamous yandere. There's a moe character for all preferences! There's also doki-doki moments a plenty. Even though Kiniro no Corda: ~Primo Passo~ may seem like a more serious reverse harem, any girl will find enough fan service to satisfy.
La Corda D'Oro Primo Passo Opening
Perhaps the most popular genre amongst girls, Shounen ai or Boys' Love (BL) and yaoi are popular amongst the female population worldwide. Why do girls go crazy for boys' love? It could be due to the fact that there is a feeling of taboo around the subject. It could be the sexual nature of yaoi that draws girls in, but regardless, girls absolutely love shounen ai to no avail. Sometimes anime can add fan service using shounen ai into anime that aren't actually shounen ai to draw in a larger audience.
Princess Princess is an anime with a mainly male cast that plays with the idea of shounen ai without actually having any real shounen ai. Still, it can be quite enticing and bring much to the imagination of many BL fans out there.
There is no doubt that boys' love is popular. Writers are also able to be a little more imaginative in shounen ai and yaoi than they can be with other genres leading to many other interesting possibilities. Actually, boys' love is so popular that often times, in ecchi harems or slice of life anime where the cast are mainly female, characters will express their love of boys' love! Also, many fans of boys' love are known for writing yaoi dojunshi with characters from other popular anime or create their own fantasies.
Gakuen Heaven (Heaven Academy)
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: April 2006 - June 2006
Itou Keita is just an average high school boy, but he's been invited to the prestigious Bell Liberty Academy. As Keita struggles to find out why he belongs in the school, he begins to build intense relationships with the other boys in his school. However, Keita feels more drawn to Kazuki Endou.
What do you get when you have an all boys' school and shounen ai? Endless possibilities! With your own imagination, you can venture into the many different possible situations that can unfold in Gakuen Heaven or enjoy the ones that Gakuen Heaven has to offer. With a cast of bishounen, there is no doubt that females will find their imaginations running wild. The real fan service in Gakuen Heaven is not just in the main story, but in what fans can draw out of the overall anime.
Gakuen Heaven Opening "School Boys" Full Version
Well, that should cover what fan service is for females. Fan service can be about skin and nudity, or it can be about building a relationship and feelings. If you think that there are others for girls, please feel free to share! I would love to hear your thoughts.