When NTR becomes “Pure Love” (A Valentine’s Day Special)
Hello and welcome to Irodori Comics’ first ever blog post!
Starting from this month, we’d like to use the blog as a place to write about things that may be of interest to our doujinshi fans.
Today’s blog post topic is somewhat related to our Valentine’s Day Sale. It being Valentine’s and all, the works that are being discounted on our sales campaign are works that we determine to be in the “Vanilla” genre.
But what exactly is the definition of Vanilla?
- Do the characters in the story have to be in an established relationship (BF/GF or married couple)?
- Is there a need for “romantic scenes” like kissing and hugging?
- Can a threesome or harem work be considered a “Vanilla” title if all the girls love the MC and the MC loves them back equally?
- If two people end up going their separate ways, is it still a vanilla work if the scenes before that were full of passionate sex?
The questions above aren’t easy to answer. And if you were to ask ten doujinshi readers, you’re probably going to get twenty different answers.
In the Western doujinshi scene, anything romantic tends to all be lumped into the one genre known as “Vanilla”. That ends up making it very vague, when even something like NTR is divided into sub genres like “Netorare”, ”Netori”, and “Netorase”.
In Japan, adult entertainment platform FANZA, tried to address this “lack of sub genre for romance” problem, by creating 3 sub genres: “Lovey-dovey & Sweet” (ラブラブ・甘々）, “Pure Love” (純愛）, and “Lovers/ Couples” （恋人同士）.
“Lovey-dovey & Sweet”, as you expect, have a lot of works where characters are exclusive to one another. Although, Sasamori Tomoe’s “Living With Succubus” series and Norigorou’s “Imaizumi Brings All The Gyarus To His House” seem to be included in this category as well, even with its harem coupling. (P.S. Yes, we are currently working on Imaizumi Volume 3)
It doesn’t always have to be boyfriend/girlfriend however, as FANZA has a lot of incest works in the category as well. Surprisingly, a few “voyeurism” works make it in the cut, as long as the couple the MC is taking a peek at are making sweet love.
*Forgive me for the bad drawing with the mouse, but the red circles are works tagged as incest, and the blue circles are works where there are more than one girl (Threesome and Harem etc). Of the top 22 works in the “Lovey-Dovey” category on FANZA, roughly half of them might not fit the “vanilla” category used in the English doujinshi fandom.
But FANZA’s categorization of “Pure Love” and “Lovers / Couples” is where things take a very interesting turn.
As you can see, of the top 3 popular works in “Pure Love”, two of them are Eightman’s “Please Have Sex With My Girlfriend” series (僕の彼女とセックスしてください). Yumeki Banana’s new netorase work and ZUMODAX’s “Crossdressing S&M” work also rank in.
For the “Lovers / Couples” category, Eightman is in the top row once again, but you also have Alps Ichimando’s “Mother Daughter NTR” work in the same row. The thumbnail even has the word NTR on it.
This is very interesting because someone over at FANZA determined that themes like NTR can still classify as “Pure Love” depending on the context. In both Yumeki Banana and Eightman’s work, the heroines love their boyfriend/ husband so much that they’re willing to entertain their partner’s netorase fetish.
With Alps Ichimando’s “Mother Daughter NTR” work, while 75% of the work is cheating sex, both the daughter and the mother “return” to their boyfriend and husband, respectively, and so it technically ends with a “happy ending”.
There is also the argument that a woman who is NTR-ed might end up being with a “better man/ more compatible man” than their previous partner, which also kind of fits the term of “Pure Love”, as strange as that may sound.
Because of this, when FANZA held a “Pure Love Sale” in the second half of 2020, a lot of NTR titles ended up appearing on the sale. Since most authors have a standard agreement with FANZA, where FANZA can decide to have sales whenever they want, a lot of NTR authors woke up to seeing their works being part of the “Pure Love Sale”, and chaos ensued. Japanese Vanilla fans weren’t exactly happy to see a lot of NTR titles in the sale either. Through correspondence with FANZA, many authors chose to opt-out of that sale campaign, so the few NTR works you still see on the Pure Love list are what’s left after the “revision”.
To summarize, tagging works isn’t always easy, as some tags aren’t as clearly defined as others, and may have varying definitions depending on who you ask. And because publishers and platforms would like to get as many works on a sale as possible, to try to make the campaign more lucrative, sometimes works on the fence get a little push to join the group. Rest assured, Irodori Comics’ definition of Vanilla doesn’t include NTR so the current Valentine’s Day Sale will mostly fit the term of “lovey-dovey”. But we do have a few other works that are a little grey like harem.
I hope you enjoyed our first blog post. I’m no blogger, so this was all very new to me. The next post is going to be an interview with one of our authors. We hope you’re looking forward to it!
Until next time!
60+ titles on sale from as low as 99c! Click on the banner below for more info:
We also have a Valentine’s day Sale going for our Irodori Aqua and SFW Irodori Sakura titles: