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REVIEW: Guide to the Perfect Otaku Girlfriend: Roomies and Romance Volume 1 LN




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battle-arc-fan



Joined: 15 Jun 2021
Posts: 24
PostPosted: Fri Jul 02, 2021 2:23 pm Reply with quote
These fixer-upper fantasies about a cute girl coming into your life to help teach you how to pick up girls have been increasing in frequency for the fanboy set, letting authors play with meta-humor and genre awareness as a self-involved selling point.

Fantasies are going to be just that. But consider the alternatives.

1. Works about guys being taught how to pick up girls by other cishet guys. While as late as 2005 - the film Hitch - this was acceptable the "pick up artist" thing is considered incel-adjacent today.

2. Works about guys being remodeled in order to pick up girls by queer guys (or girls). While that was the thrust (whether explicit or implicit) of the original "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" - which originally aired on TV in the same era that "Hitch" was in theaters - it most definitely was not the theme for its more contemporary remake and also would be frowned upon today.

3. Works that depict guys who fail at romance just resigning, accepting their flaws and dedicating themselves to dignity in solitude. Yeah, that is "men going their own way" and also incel-adjacent. Also difficult subject matter to create fodder for mass market commercial fiction.

4. Works about guys who don't need to be coached at being successful in romance in the first place because they are plenty capable of that on their own? In addition to not being particularly entertaining fiction - save in cases where the girl initially does not return his affections and has to be convinced which again was a romcom staple in times past but is now considered harassment - would be also be taken as fantasies, but of the power variety.

That leaves "guys being taught to pick up girls by other cishet girls" as the only available option. All right, suppose that you want the girl training the guy to not be a potential romantic target, even if only for a temporary romantic tension/competition/unrequited angst subplot. Fine, make her the guy's cousin or sister. Except ... yeah don't even need to point it out.

So if you are going to do works in this area that somewhat conform to modern mores that people in the target audience - which lest we forget is going to be more 14 year old Japanese boys than 30 year old westerners - are actually going to want to buy then if you have better options for a "romance consultant" than a cute girl it would be interesting to see what they are. What a 15 year old boy is going to read and what everyone else thinks that he should read are going to be two different things.
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