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Old 2010-10-29, 21:02   Link #1
0utf0xZer0
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Moe fans: what shows and characters do you like and why?

As some of you know, I participate in a lot of discussion about moe on this board. One thing I’ve noticed about these discussions is that many people – myself included - seem to have some sort of notions about what kinds of characters and shows moe fans like and dislike.

I want to put those notions to the test by collecting opinions from moe fans about what they actually like and dislike, and especially what they consider moe.

Please note that I'd prefer people not attribute opinions to other people in this thead. Debate about a character is fine, but this is a thread to give opinions, not attribute them to others.

For the moment, I’m going to leave this discussion fairly free-form, but I’d actually like to set up a system by which people can ask thread participants their opinions on certain characters, casts, or shows. Perhaps people should bold question directed at thread participants at large?
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Old 2010-10-30, 03:35   Link #2
Archon_Wing
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Hmm, how do I not make this correspond with my favorite characters list?

Well in any case, I like moe when it's combined with some kind of confidence or competence in skill or strength. That could be mental or physical.

Shiori Misaka from Kanon is a fairly good example of someone I like just because she's also fairly confident about herself and what she wants to do. There's always Matsuri from Sola which combines this confidence with charm and a bit of sex appeal which makes a very strong case for moe in my books.

I also like the cool/quiet types just because I like pretty much anything in this area. Mai Kawasumi has that certain elegance in her actions and loyalty to her friends that I respect greatly, and so amplifies the cutesy moments when they do happen. There's also Fate Haralown who is like that as well.

Overall I like characters that display grace-- traits to be admired and goals and motivations to be respected. Having a broad range of emotions and adequate character development that causes the character to be more complete.

So you can guess what I don't like
-- Annoying
-- Little or no development
-- Useless
-- is not a character-- they just serve as a plot device or main character satelite.

I won't have to name names; will speak for itself. ;p
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Old 2010-10-30, 04:57   Link #3
Demi.
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I like the cool/quiet types just because I like pretty much anything in this area. Mai Kawasumi has that certain elegance in her actions and loyalty to her friends that I respect greatly, and so amplifies the cutesy moments when they do happen. There's also Fate Haralown who is like that as well.
Pretty much that. I'll take a stoic, modest character who occasionally becomes flustered for all the right reasons, over a bratty tsundere any day.
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Old 2010-10-30, 06:20   Link #4
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Characters I like tend to be multi-dimensional, and it happens that a lot of them have "moe" as a bonus trait. Characters like Amamiya Yuuko (ef) and Shihou Matsuri (sola) have a supernatural/mystery aura about them, whilst characters like Senjougahara Hitagi (Bakemonogatari) and Horo (Spice and Wolf) have a quirky, witty personality attached them. Characters like Isayama Yomi (Ga-Rei Zero) have the "cool" factor whilst characters like Sheryl Nome (Macross Frontier) have a sex appeal. All these characters can be "moe" at times but is definitely not the dominant factor. However, I don't exactly have preferable traits.

Characters I tend to dislike are those that portray a single dimensional personality, which are often over-used and exaggerated. Examples are airheads or passive characters that don't do anything or those of the Type A tsundere group - snap out at the protagonist at any sign of jealousy. I also think I don't need to name any names .
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Old 2010-10-30, 14:35   Link #5
Vexx
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Not ignoring the thread... just want to think a bit before I post in it.
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Old 2010-10-30, 17:31   Link #6
cyth
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For quick reference, I'd like to post my Top 10 Anime Girls list that I've been maintaining since 2007. If any of you can identify any patterns I myself am not privy to, I would appreciate it.
Spoiler for Top 10 Anime Girls:
I'd say it's a mixed bag, but I can point out two categories myself: 1.) Tomboys and characters who struggle with their femininity, and 2.) Tsundere and powerful characters who get emotionally disarmed by the protagonist. As do others, I also like characters with strong personalities, not ones with mushy goo. Well, there's Ayu, but...
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Old 2010-10-30, 20:18   Link #7
0utf0xZer0
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Originally Posted by Demi. View Post
Pretty much that. I'll take a stoic, modest character who occasionally becomes flustered for all the right reasons, over a bratty tsundere any day.
What’s you’re opinion of tsunderes like Eri Sachikawa (School Rumble) and Rin Tohsaka (Fate/Stay Night)? Well not exactly stoic, you can hardly accuse those two of being brats.

Sorry if it feels like I'm heckling you here, but it annoys me that the term tsundere has become synonymous with being over-reactive and bitchy.

@Archon and Acejem

My responses to this are probably going to be a bit different from the ones you gave simply because while I will include some general reason for liking characters, I’ll be concentrating quite heavily on what I consider their moe traits, rather than their general traits.. That said, I’m going to give my quick thoughts on some of the characters you mention, because I want this thread to get people thinking about what sort of traits they like and/or find moe in characters and putting specific characters under the microscope is a good way to do that.

(I’m not posting about Cyth’s choices right now because his post wasn’t up when I started writing this and I think this post is long enough as is…)

Mai was my favourite character in Kanon 2006 back when I watched it. And I’d still consider her a candidate for my favourite in the series. I didn’t so much admire her elegance as like her stoic nature – at the time, I often compared her to Yuki. That said, I think I like her more because I consider her a cool character than because of her moe traits. I tend to think of moe as being either a warm feeling or a “I want to help/protect her” feeling. Stoic girls generally don’t evoke the former for me, and while Mai’s freakout over Sayuri was pretty moving, there’s characters whose storylines affected me much more deeply.

I never cared for Shiori much when I first watched the show but I’ve come to really like her. In fact, I consider her to be the best match for Yuuchi. It’s interesting that Archon mentions Shiori and Matsuri so close together… Shiori comes across to me as kind of like a junior version of Matsuri. Her playfulness and charm aren’t nearly as well developed as Matsuri’s, but she’s got quite a few years to learn. And the “cute junior” type is one of my favourite moe types, so she in essence has a dual moe appeal.

That said, there’s not replacement for the real thing. Matsuri has long been in my top ten for her cheeky, playful side. Because of it, she manages to evoke the “warm feelings” kind of moe despite being a total cougar (seriously, when you factor in the immortality, she’s like the age of her love interest – squared). It’s interesting to hear her described as having sex appeal, when I think about it she does but I haven’t tended to notice much because it’s fairly understated. Can’t say the supernatural/mysterious aspect ever played a huge role in her appeal to me, aside from piquing my initial interest a little.

I consider Horo to be pretty similar to Matsuri in having a cheeky, playful side, and once again, it’s a key reason why she’s among my top ten. Being a kemonomimi fanboy, the fact she’s a wolf girl and a little bit of an exhibitionist doesn’t hurt either.

Actually, even Yuuko Amamiya initially in A Tale of Memories attracted me with a playful nature, although here the “mysterious” bit played a much larger role in her appeal to me. Her playful side also manifests in her backstory in Melodies, although here her playful side exhibits a little more of a sadistic edge. Somehow it still appeals. She’s also got a deeply moving backstory, although surprisingly it didn’t evoke as much of a moe effect as some other characters’ stories I could name.

For me, a similar playful and a bit sadistic appeal is the major appeal of Hitagi Senjougahara. If Shiori is “Junior Matsuri”, perhaps Hitagi is “Dark Matsuri”? Here, the sex appeals a little more direct than with many of the other characters mentioned so far as well. Another top ten favourite of mine.

Fate Testarossa is indeed elegant, and that does give her a certain appeal. Not sure I’d consider her a major favourite though.

I like Yomi and kind of like Sheryl, but in terms of moe factor for me, they’re outgunned by their competition: Kagura and Ranka, respectively. When a show has had a strong female lead along with a weak or semi-strong female lead, I tend to favour the weaker one for some reason: for me, this goes all the way back to some of the earliest anime I watched, such as Full Metal Panic (I liked Tessa more than Kaname) and Utawarerumono (I prefer Eruruu to Karura).

I guess you could say that while strong girls often have a sort of “badass appeal” to me, I usually find they lack the moe appeal to compete with their weaker counterparts unless they demonstrate a significant and notable playful side. Yomi and Sheryl just aren’t quite there. Although Sheryl did put on a better show in this regard in the movie than the TV series… the way she kind of flirted with Alto during the concert scene early in the movie was a pretty good example of playful/teasing moe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by acejem View Post
Characters I tend to dislike are those that portray a single dimensional personality, which are often over-used and exaggerated. Examples are airheads or passive characters that don't do anything or those of the Type A tsundere group - snap out at the protagonist at any sign of jealousy. I also think I don't need to name any names .
Hmmm… while I wouldn’t say I really like the airhead type, I’ve never actually minded it too much. In fact, I usually refer to characters like K-On!’s Yui as “loveable idiots. If there is one moe writing practice I have a distaste for, it’s the way writers seem to tack random strange traits onto characters… Key in particular seems prone to this, many of their characters are endearing enough to soften the blow but some aren’t (sorry Cyth, but Ayu is one of the ones that just doesn’t work for me). As for tsunderes… I tend to prefer the non-snappy type, although I actually really like Taiga from Toradora and I like Shana a fair bit too. I can understand the distaste for them though… characters like Louise from ZnT are pretty annoying.

When I think about it, I have a few characters I like from most types. However, there are a few character types that I tend to really like. First, I like cute juniors, specifically the kind of girl a few years younger than me or the lead character who have a fairly warm personality – characters like Shiori from Kanon and Nadeko from Bakemonogatari come to mind. Second, I like the shy type – Kotomi from Clannad is a good example here. And finally, I like the playful, charming type – characters like Matsuri, Horo and Hitagi. In general, the older, more powerful characters I like come from the latter group, the younger, weaker ones come from the former two. Although there are occasionally characters who overlap – Amagami SS’s Ai Nanasaki, for example, is both a cute junior and a playful, teasing type.

I would also say that character backstory often plays a role in how much I like a character, although that’s an issue for another post. I’m already at like 1000 words.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cyth
As do others, I also like characters with strong personalities, not ones with mushy goo. Well, there's Ayu, but...
I think of the posters so far, I probably come the closest to being a "moeblob lover", with namedropping Nadeko, Kotomi, etc. But I'd like to think that my posts prove that my tastes aren't as shallow as they might initially appear.
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Old 2010-10-30, 20:28   Link #8
Midonin
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I don't even use the term "moe" that much, as I know just how vaguely defined it is and how much kneejerk reactions using it even causes. But I do know the pattern when it comes to my favorite characters.

Hidamari Sketch's Miyako, GA's Nodamiki, Ritsu from K-ON! are the top three that come to mind, but they're all forged in a very similar mold. Unorthodox ways of thinking, boundless energy, dreamers and doers, and just a little idiotic. Even the smartest of people tend to do stupid things, and they are unafraid to do whatever weird thing comes to mind, even if people don't understand it. Characters who are tricksters also appeal to me for very similar reasons.
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Old 2010-10-30, 20:52   Link #9
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The most moe girls for me are Sumomo Akihime, Yako Katsuragi and Elis Shihou. And I think the trait I like most about them is that they try hard and have a "never give up" aura about them.

(The scene that really exemplifies this is the episode of Nanatsuiro Drops where Sumomo has to obtain the drop that fell into the pool. Which means she has to get over her fear of water.)

Of course the thing about this is the less competent a character is the easier it is to show that they do try hard. Which is why I think Tsukasa is moe (inspite never having much of a chance to show off) and Kagami not moe.
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Old 2010-10-30, 22:05   Link #10
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I've been giving this a lot of thought, but I now feel up to attempting to answer the questions posed by 0utf0xZer0.

To put it very simply, I tend to like moe characters for these two reasons:

1) Simple aesthetic appeal. I like how most moe characters are drawn and designed. They tend to have either a loli appearance or a "girl next door" appearance. I find the loli appearance cute in a non-sexual way (that's just me personally). I find the "girl next door" appearance cute in general.

2) They are usually very good-natured, and generally positive and upbeat. In an era dominated by angsting male leads, bad ass anti-heroes, and cynical snarkers, I find that most moe characters constitute a refreshing and cheerful change of pace for me.


Most moe characters come across to me as simply nice, warm, friendly people (if they were real and not fictional, of course). I know that comes across as very hokey, but it's true, and it's something that I appreciate. It's definitely why I like most of the cast of Clannad and Kanon 2006, especially Kotomi Ichinose and Shiori.


Now, beyond that, I share a lot of Archon_Wing's views.

Of my five favorite anime characters of all-time, four are female, and they are Nanoha Takamachi, Haruhi Suzumiya, Shana (of Shakugan no Shana), and Fate Testarossa.

Considerable competence in particular areas of expertise is something that all four of these characters share. All four of these characters are also very driven and determined characters who do not easily give in or quit.

So, even with moe characters, I love a "never say die" attitude.

Stoicism is probably the character trait that I like the most of them all, as it tends to tie together all of the various character traits that I do like.


I also tend to like very theatrical, or "hammy" characters. This is a big part of the reason why Haruhi is one of my favorite characters.

I like characters who come across as a bit "larger than life"; characters that tend to capture every scene that they're in.

With this in mind, while I very much like most moe characters, I'm not as much into what could be called an anime with a very relaxed, moe atmosphere.

I think that moe's strengths really come out when there's serious action and drama going on. Part of what makes the female characters of Higurashi Kai so appealing, in my opinion, is the fact that they really are in danger; they really do need help. "Moe" is sometimes said to evoke a strong feeling of protectiveness in the heart of the viewer; a desire to ensure that the moe character is not harmed. Well, I would say that this feeling is at its greatest, at least for me, when such harm coming to a moe character is a very real possibility.


Putting aside moe for a bit, I like suspenseful dramatic action-packed anime shows in general. I like fantasy and sci-fi. I like good multifaceted plots that are very solid, but with at least an unexpected twist or two. Animes that aim to be a bit epic in the story or stories that they seek to tell are ones that I tend to like. This is why I like a lot of mecha animes, like Gurren Lagann and various Gundam shows: their narratives exist on a grand scale, involving global if not interstellar conflict.


I generally don't like very weak-willed characters, and some moe characters are like this, I'll admit. I think that one thing that has hurt the perception of "moe" is how the term is tied to Mikuru Asahina in the minds of many non-Japanese anime fans.

Mikuru, while having some good character traits, does tend to exemplify a lot of the character traits that annoy many anime fans. And, somewhat incorrectly I think, those traits became associated with moe characters as a whole due to Mikuru, the "Moe Mascot" of the SOS Brigade.

Truth be told, most moe characters are not as weak-willed as Mikuru, most moe characters are more assertive than Mikuru, and most moe characters have a wider range of usefulness as characters than Mikuru does.


Moe, to me, is like having a cheerful smile on a sunny day with a brilliantly bright blue sky, walking over gregarious green grassy hills, and receiving happily hearty hugs. It's the anime equivalent of the famous "Trololol" video on YouTube :




Ok, that was a bit silly of me, but sometimes it helps to be over-the-top to get a point across, lol.
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Old 2010-10-30, 23:01   Link #11
Demi.
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Originally Posted by 0utf0xZer0 View Post
What’s you’re opinion of tsunderes like Eri Sachikawa (School Rumble) and Rin Tohsaka (Fate/Stay Night)? Well not exactly stoic, you can hardly accuse those two of being brats.

Sorry if it feels like I'm heckling you here, but it annoys me that the term tsundere has become synonymous with being over-reactive and bitchy.
Well, you're assuming I was referring to tsunderes as a whole, but there is no denying a lot of them are bratty. Not all of them, however. Eri and Tohsaka don't really fall into that category, neither does Hinagiku -- among others. I do find it is the case more often than not, so rather than listing names, I just brought up tsunderes and the tendency they have to be bratty. It's usually the loli tsunderes that fall into this category.
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Old 2010-10-30, 23:44   Link #12
Vexx
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Okay... this probably doesn't exactly answer the question.. but I tend to prefer a series that takes a sub-genre and does something unusual with it or with the characters in it (e.g. Toradora!, Spice&Wolf, etc). I suppose most would tag me a 'moe fan' but I don't specifically look for moe as a central theme. If the characters exhibit characteristics that generate 'moe' ... fine but there has to be more than that. What generates that feeling can vary wildly... from the "Taiga" fiery types to the sophisticated acidity of Horo or the quiet emotionality of a bashful female demi-fox-spirit in this season's offering (Susukihotaru in Otome Youkai Zakuro). OTOH.. the supposed 'moe' of a K-On Yui just leaves me a bit blank. I suppose if I *had* to narrow it down, then the 'crusty exterior, creamy interior' character type is more 'moe' to me (one type of tsundere) because they can usually take care of themselves but they *choose* to be 'dere' to a special someone.

Probably ... Motoko of Love Hina was the earliest character I encountered in this hobby that generated 'moe' for me. Most of the examples of that have some core of her in them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple R
I think that one thing that has hurt the perception of "moe" is how the term is tied to Mikuru Asahina in the minds of many non-Japanese anime fans.
I agree - her characterization really derailed many 'western' anime fans understanding of moe into a little subcompartment of moe as well as inverting where 'moe' actually exists.
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Old 2010-10-31, 00:42   Link #13
0utf0xZer0
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@Midonin: Your avatar (for future reference, Arashiyama from Soredemo Machi wa Mawatte Iru) is pretty much my definition of a "lovable idiot" character. She fits an interesting class of characters for me though: I consider her a "moe character" due to her traits and she's one of my favourite characters this season because of her antics, but she doesn't personally evoke a moe feeling in me. This seems to be the fate of this character type though... I have much the same opinion of Yui.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ash Falls Town View Post
Of course the thing about this is the less competent a character is the easier it is to show that they do try hard. Which is why I think Tsukasa is moe (inspite never having much of a chance to show off) and Kagami not moe.
I seem to remember Kagami had a few bashful moments that were really cute, even momentarily drawing a moe feeling or two from me, although it didn't last (I refer to this kind of temporary moe as a "moe moment"). Such moments are one of the major appeals of the tsundere character type..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
I think that moe's strengths really come out when there's serious action and drama going on. Part of what makes the female characters of Higurashi Kai so appealing, in my opinion, is the fact that they really are in danger; they really do need help. "Moe" is sometimes said to evoke a strong feeling of protectiveness in the heart of the viewer; a desire to ensure that the moe character is not harmed. Well, I would say that this feeling is at its greatest, at least for me, when such harm coming to a moe character is a very real possibility.
I tend to credit a lot of my love of my to the fact that a lot of the more dramatic moe shows I've seen have moved me quite deeply. In fact, there are certain favourite characters I have that I like primarily for their stories rather than their character traits themselves - Chihiro from EF being the best example.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Mikuru, while having some good character traits, does tend to exemplify a lot of the character traits that annoy many anime fans. And, somewhat incorrectly I think, those traits became associated with moe characters as a whole due to Mikuru, the "Moe Mascot" of the SOS Brigade.

Truth be told, most moe characters are not as weak-willed as Mikuru, most moe characters are more assertive than Mikuru, and most moe characters have a wider range of usefulness as characters than Mikuru does.
Mikuru's moe traits are so "in your face" that I tend to conceive of her more as a satirical character than a conventional moe character. There are people who find her moe, but I personally find her traits so in your face it feels kind of clinical and forced - which makes her rather ineffective at actually evoking a moe feeling from me.

Also, I've always gotten the impression that Yuki is the most popular Haruhi character among moe fans.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
or the quiet emotionality of a bashful female demi-fox-spirit in this season's offering (Susukihotaru in Otome Youkai Zakuro).
I don't think I'd find Susukihotaru very moe on her own, but when paired with Riken she evokes a very high number of "awwwwwwwww" moments. Zakuro herself evokes more moe in terms of inherent personality traits (as opposed to interactions, although she gets a boost from those too).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
OTOH.. the supposed 'moe' of a K-On Yui just leaves me a bit blank. I suppose if I *had* to narrow it down, then the 'crusty exterior, creamy interior' character type is more 'moe' to me (one type of tsundere) because they can usually take care of themselves but they *choose* to be 'dere' to a special someone.
Yui is interesting for me from a moe standpoint. She evokes warm feelings from me, but not the almost love like feeling that a character like Kotomi, Nadeko, Horo, or Matsuri does. Instead, she has a kind of infectiously ultra sweet, saccharine vibe to her that permeates the surrounding scene.

I did find the fact she topped some "waifu" polls at one point utterly terrifying in that it made me wonder if otaku really are as utterly bonkers as some people think (as opposed to just a small number being utterly bonkers), however, I take comfort in the fact that she lost other polls and that I suspect there may have been vote splitting among potential challengers (including vote splitting between her K-On compatriots Mio and Azusa, who strike me as saner waifu material).
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Old 2010-10-31, 00:45   Link #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0utf0xZer0
My responses to this are probably going to be a bit different from the ones you gave simply because while I will include some general reason for liking characters, I’ll be concentrating quite heavily on what I consider their moe traits, rather than their general traits..
My bad, I guess I misunderstood the nature of the topic. Firstly, I think it largely depends on people's definition of moe. If I recall, traditionally moe was a protecting feeling of a character, but now it wide enough to include sexual feelings or a strong feeling in general towards a character. Moe is also often synonymous with cute as well.

I never associated playful with moe but knowing how wide the definition of moe is, I am highly likely to be wrong. People consider tsunderes who like to beat up others moe or bats*it crazy yanderes moe, so the definition is very broad indeed. I'm just going to with a very broad definition that moe is a strong desire or feeling to be sympathizing with a (female) character.

Given this broad definition and despite my tendancy to not favour any traits, conclusions tell me that I tend to prefer playful characters. As you said Yuuko, Matsuri, Hitagi and Horo all have their fair share of playful personalities, and theres other characters that fit this mold that I highly like including Amano Touko (Bungaku Shoujo), Noda Megumi (Nodame Cantabile) and Akiba Rika (HanTsuki). However, this isn't always the case. If I was to always prefer playful characters, then in True Tears I should have by default preferred Isurugi Noe over Yuasa Hiromi. Here, I prefer the more reserved, stoic, "Yamato Nadeshiko" type.

Talking about reserved, stoic characters, I have mixed preferences of them. Whilst I like characters like Saber (Fate Stay/Night) and Fate (MGLN), I dislike characters like Yuki (Haruhi Suzumiya) and Kanade (Angel Beats). Whilst the stoicness in Saber and Fate seems to be natural due to their circumstances and upbringing, Yuki and Kanade seem to be stoic for the sake of being stoic (perhaps just for fanservice or obligatory character archtype that "need" to be there for the type of show)

Talking about Yuki and Kanade, they both come from KyoAni or Key, and without deliberately jumping on the banwagon and hating on them, I tend to dislike their "moe" traits more than I like them. I find it that KyoAni or Key characters are not particularly strong. They often tend to be single dimensional or very "simple" with weird random strange traits as 0utf0xZer0 puts it. Another trait that they are not strong are conclusions/endings but that is another topic. However, they often do excel at creating suspenseful and heartwrenching dramas, which is why credit should be given for series like Clannad ~After Story and VNs like Planetarian.

As for weak-willed or "useless" characters, I'm largely on the same stance as Archon Wing and Triple R in that I generally don't like them. These would include characters like Ryou (Clannad), Yoshida (Shana) and generally any female lead in a shoujo romance/drama manga. I don't like female characters that are so weak that they have to depend on the protagonist to justify their existence. There are exceptions like Chihiro (ef) who although appear to weak-willed on the surface is actually quite strong-willed (and is very moe) in addition to having a mysterious aura about them. In fact, just about every ef character has a mysterious aura about them whilst on the surface they appear to be simple and stereotypical... perhaps with the exception of Kei (poor Kei lol).

As for Type A tsunderes, as I mentioned I dislike them, but Type B tsunderes like Rin (Fate Stay Night) and Lynn Minmay (Macross) are perfectly fine.

In the end, I think a better question for me would have been what kind of moe traits do I dislike and why, since I do not specifically watch a show because there is a specific moe trait I favour. It just happens I like a character due to non-moe traits and I happen to also like or at the very least tolerate their moe traits.

In conclusion, characters need to be more than mere moe for me to like them and if I had to choose a trait that I find favourable, it would be the playful type if playful is considered moe. Moe traits that I don't find favourable are generally of the weak-willed type.

Hope this answered the question better.
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Old 2010-10-31, 01:21   Link #15
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Not ignoring the thread... just want to think a bit before I post in it.
I'd like to say I am doing the same currently, I'll probably post in a day or so.
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Old 2010-10-31, 01:51   Link #16
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My bad, I guess I misunderstood the nature of the topic. Firstly, I think it largely depends on people's definition of moe. If I recall, traditionally moe was a protecting feeling of a character, but now it wide enough to include sexual feelings or a strong feeling in general towards a character. Moe is also often synonymous with cute as well.
I'm actually completely fine with people talking about the kinds of characters they like in general, since I'm also interested in what moe fans like aside from straight up moe. I simply happen to be very interested in what people consider moe as well.

As I've mentioned in other threads, moe kind of has the connotations "burning" and "blossoming", as in "burning passion, blossoming girl". Blossoming suggests to me youthful (much moreso than childish), and playfulness is something I would consider both a youthful trait and a trait that can evoke warm feelings towards someone. So for me, it's a major moe point. Plus, a lot of people consider the "peppy" type to be kind of the original moe archetype anyway.

The "strongly feeling for/sympathisizing with" kind of moe seems to me to originate from Evangelion, which popularized "broken girls" as a moe type. A lot of dramatic moe works try to evoke this feeling, it's part of the reason that many people find them tearjerkers.

I don't personally consider sexual feelings to be moe feelings. However, quite a few characters evoke both moe feelings (of either kind) and sexual ones.

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Talking about Yuki and Kanade, they both come from KyoAni or Key, and without deliberately jumping on the banwagon and hating on them, I tend to dislike their "moe" traits more than I like them. I find it that KyoAni or Key characters are not particularly strong. They often tend to be single dimensional or very "simple" with weird random strange traits as 0utf0xZer0 puts it. Another trait that they are not strong are conclusions/endings but that is another topic. However, they often do excel at creating suspenseful and heartwrenching dramas, which is why credit should be given for series like Clannad ~After Story and VNs like Planetarian.
I actually like both Yuki and Kanade. The moe appeal I get from them (and a few other emotionless girl types) is that they're facing internal emotional struggles, but can't really express it effectively, or are even actively repressing it. I will admit that aside from this moe point, Kanade is a fairly bland character. You could probably level the same accusation at Nadeko (I suppose I should mention that I find Kana Hanazawa's voice moe), but I've always felt Nadeko is a little more complex than people give her credit for - there's multiple ways to interpret some of her actions, she just doesn't talk much.

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There are exceptions like Chihiro (ef) who although appear to weak-willed on the surface is actually quite strong-willed (and is very moe) in addition to having a mysterious aura about them.
Yeah, Chihiro is a strong willed girl suffering from a severe disability. The fact she tends to be meek around others (she is, after all, mentally trapped at a time when she was twelve and relied a lot on her somewhat brash, aggressive twin sister) is probably what makes people take a while to catch on.
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Old 2010-10-31, 02:10   Link #17
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As some of you know, I participate in a lot of discussion about moe on this board. One thing I’ve noticed about these discussions is that many people – myself included - seem to have some sort of notions about what kinds of characters and shows moe fans like and dislike.

I want to put those notions to the test by collecting opinions from moe fans about what they actually like and dislike, and especially what they consider moe.

Please note that I'd prefer people not attribute opinions to other people in this thead. Debate about a character is fine, but this is a thread to give opinions, not attribute them to others.

For the moment, I’m going to leave this discussion fairly free-form, but I’d actually like to set up a system by which people can ask thread participants their opinions on certain characters, casts, or shows. Perhaps people should bold question directed at thread participants at large?
Interesting question. Instead of trying to target the definition of moe, you try to target each individual's interpretation of this concept.

The best I can personally do is list some of my favorite female characters...

This includes.... Shiki (Kara no Kyoukai), Real (Ergo Proxy), Asuka and Rei (Neon Genesis Evangelion), Haruhi (Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuutsu), Rin and Saber (Fate Stay Night), Akiha (Tsukihime), and Horo (Spice and Wolf).

Is there any defining characteristics about them? Well yes... None of them are weak natured. However, none of them are your prototypical "moe" characters... At least I don't think so.

Usually I just like girls that have any sort of brains or strong personality in anime. I hate the naive types, the frail types. I'm not too much into any of the girls that are like photo copies of Rei from NGE .


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I generally don't like very weak-willed characters, and some moe characters are like this, I'll admit. I think that one thing that has hurt the perception of "moe" is how the term is tied to Mikuru Asahina in the minds of many non-Japanese anime fans.
I think Clannad and Kanon 2006 did far more to harm people's perceptions of moe than Mikuru. Mikuru is basically a parody of a prototypical moe character. But Haruhi the show didn't only contain her as a "moe" character. I feel that the far more domineering Haruhi and Yuki would take control of people's perceptions of moe if anything.

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Old 2010-10-31, 02:25   Link #18
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Originally Posted by Reckoner View Post
I think Clannad and Kanon 2006 did far more to harm people's perceptions of moe than Mikuru. Mikuru is basically a parody of a prototypical moe character. But Haruhi the show did only contain her as the "moe" character. I feel if anything the far more domineering Haruhi and Yuki would take control of people's perceptions of moe if anything.
I would probably go further and say Key/KyoAni in general is harming people's perceptions. However, I think the word "harm" is wrong word to use here, but perhaps "misguided" or "limited". Moe has a broad definition but some people (particularily moe haters) think moe is limited to being "retarded" or "airheaded" or "tsundere", which Key/KyoAni girls seem to portray.

The reason why I'm reluctant to use "harm" is that there is a large group of people that like their characters being moe with those traits, and using the word "harm" indicates a negative connatation - that this type of "moe" is bad. Of course, that doesn't mean I agree with them either or like these particular moe traits, but what is "bad' is subjective.
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Old 2010-10-31, 02:30   Link #19
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Originally Posted by Reckoner View Post
Interesting question. Instead of trying to target the definition of moe, you try to target each individual's interpretation of this concept.
Well, I'm actually looking to see if there's patterns, but yes, my objective with this thread is to see how moe works "in practice" as opposed to in theory.

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Originally Posted by Reckoner View Post
I think Clannad and Kanon 2006 did far more to harm people's perceptions of moe than Mikuru. Mikuru is basically a parody of a prototypical moe character. But Haruhi the show did only contain her as the "moe" character. I feel if anything the far more domineering Haruhi and Yuki would take control of people's perceptions of moe if anything.
There's one key difference between Mikuru and other characters from Haruhi, Kanon, and Clannad: Mikuru is the only one who is ever explicitly described in series as a moe character. And Haruhi was big enough to reach huge numbers of English speaking fans who had never heard the term "moe" - remember, we're talking 2006 here.

So in essence, Mikuru introduced a lot of westerners to the concept of moe. The first impression these people had of the concept came from a satirical caricture, and I think it coloured an awful lot of impressions. Hearing Kanon and Clannad described as moe was just the nails in the coffin.
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Old 2010-10-31, 04:09   Link #20
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Originally Posted by 0utf0xZer0 View Post
There's one key difference between Mikuru and other characters from Haruhi, Kanon, and Clannad: Mikuru is the only one who is ever explicitly described in series as a moe character. And Haruhi was big enough to reach huge numbers of English speaking fans who had never heard the term "moe" - remember, we're talking 2006 here.

So in essence, Mikuru introduced a lot of westerners to the concept of moe. The first impression these people had of the concept came from a satirical caricture, and I think it coloured an awful lot of impressions. Hearing Kanon and Clannad described as moe was just the nails in the coffin.
Well sure, she was the only one described as "moe." But you have to remember, the one who did so was our oh so lovable main character who then pranced around with her outside in a bunny outfit. She went off about "turn on" and then used herself as one.

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Originally Posted by acejem View Post
I would probably go further and say Key/KyoAni in general is harming people's perceptions. However, I think the word "harm" is wrong word to use here, but perhaps "misguided" or "limited". Moe has a broad definition but some people (particularily moe haters) think moe is limited to being "retarded" or "airheaded" or "tsundere", which Key/KyoAni girls seem to portray.

The reason why I'm reluctant to use "harm" is that there is a large group of people that like their characters being moe with those traits, and using the word "harm" indicates a negative connatation - that this type of "moe" is bad. Of course, that doesn't mean I agree with them either or like these particular moe traits, but what is "bad' is subjective.
Ah sure, sure. Yes, misguided or limited would be a more apt way to put it.
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