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Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

I know I know, stereotypes an all that, but it's accurate in that women are the largest buyers of romance, without a doubt, and I was just wondering why exactly... I mean, usually romance has many things a guy is into (that of course being sex, hot women, etc.). I doubt it's even about the fact that nothing is really happening, because in Anime the people who enjoy shit like K-On! and YuruYuri, both of which involve moeblobs doing cute things and then nothing happens and they're both goddamn terrible, the main audience is young adult Otaku's, most of whom are male. I can't really think of a similar equivalent in the west... maybe wrestling, the male's soap opera (if any of the wrestling thread wants to disagree, well, tough shit)... I had an idea but I then lost it in the middle of doing this blog so please help meeeeeeeee

and I guess this can also be, do you enjoy romance shit from time to time? I don't mean you were into boinking Ashley in Mass Effect or whatever, but something where the romance was the main part. Even if it's just a romcom or something

#1 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

I know I know, stereotypes an all that, but it's accurate in that women are the largest buyers of romance, without a doubt, and I was just wondering why exactly... I mean, usually romance has many things a guy is into (that of course being sex, hot women, etc.). I doubt it's even about the fact that nothing is really happening, because in Anime the people who enjoy shit like K-On! and YuruYuri, both of which involve moeblobs doing cute things and then nothing happens and they're both goddamn terrible, the main audience is young adult Otaku's, most of whom are male. I can't really think of a similar equivalent in the west... maybe wrestling, the male's soap opera (if any of the wrestling thread wants to disagree, well, tough shit)... I had an idea but I then lost it in the middle of doing this blog so please help meeeeeeeee

and I guess this can also be, do you enjoy romance shit from time to time? I don't mean you were into boinking Ashley in Mass Effect or whatever, but something where the romance was the main part. Even if it's just a romcom or something

#2 Posted by Make_Me_Mad (3091 posts) -

Whatever, I like romance stories. Hell, I grew up watching Soap Operas with my mom while my brothers were at school, that shit was intense. People were getting murdered, divorced, replaced by evil twins and put into comas, and there was always at least one random romance going on in the forefront of all of that. I enjoy romances when they're done well. For an example of a goddamn terrible romance, look towards that Legend of Korra show that came out recently- ugh.

#3 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

oh yeah legend of korra was the worst when it came to romance. Even Bolin would've been better than Zuko Mako. and poor asumi (I think this is her name) gets nothing :(

#4 Posted by Bocam (3753 posts) -

@Animasta: I give a fuck about K-on! but Yuriyuri is fucking great. So uh... I think you should shut up.

#5 Posted by TheSouthernDandy (3872 posts) -

I don't mind a chick flick now and then. Know what? I enjoyed Notting Hill. I don't care who knows it.

#6 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

If I had to guess, I'd say that it's because of social stigma that d00ds aren't into romance-heavy media. Nobody wants to be called a pussy because they're into "girly" things. In the same vein as the rest of the "controversies" that have attracted many responses, I think that if we, as a society, collectively grew up,* we could have much better discourse about subjects like this and even people who aren't in the traditional romance demographic might check out the genre instead of writing it off entirely.

--

*I don't mean this in the reductive, knee-jerk way. I think everyone would benefit if we actively worked to stamp out inaccurate preconceptions based on ignorant popular opinion.

@Animasta said:

moeblob

This is my new favorite word. However, I think you're doing yourself a disservice as dismissing this "shit" as "goddamn terrible".

#7 Edited by CaLe (3985 posts) -

My favourite movie of all time (My Sassy Girl - Korean ver.) is a romance movie. I don't like romance that seems too perfect though. I don't like anything going perfectly for anyone, ever.

My favourite anime (Kenshin OVAs) also happens to be very romance heavy.

I don't like romance involving sex. Not one bit. I like innocent romance and deep, often complicated, emotional connection romance.

#8 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

@Ravenlight: I read through ALL of K-On. ALL OF IT.

I mean yes not all moeblob shows are terrible, but the ones that aren't actually have a goddamn plot or something to go along with it (such as girls und panzer). The ones that are anime moe seinfeld are terrible

#9 Edited by believer258 (11911 posts) -

Find me ten women who think that The Expendables and Die Hard are some of the greatest movies ever made.

It's not that men who like romance movies don't exist, nor that women who like dumb action movies don't exist, but there's not a ton of overlap between the two. I don't have a definitive answer as to why - possibly because social norms are reinforced? Or maybe there's just some biological tendency for women to enjoy seeing Jane Eyre remade an umpteen number of times and men preferring The Iliad?

#10 Posted by HerbieBug (4212 posts) -

Stories where the whole point is social interaction progressing to relationship aren't interesting to me. It's boring and tedious.

#11 Posted by ArtisanBreads (3835 posts) -

.. there's romance in just about every movie and game.

We just like there to be more than that.

#12 Posted by Sergio (2127 posts) -

I'm OK with romance, I don't really bother looking for it specifically. I won't bother reading a book that is described as a romance novel, but romance is involved in some of the books I do read.

#13 Posted by stonepawfox (236 posts) -

for me i suppose the answer is i am not particularly interested in following somebody's romantic relationship, because i myself am not particularly romantic at all. it seems like something you'd need to be invested in on an emotional level, rather than the relatively fast gratification gained from watching cartoons/playing video games where you just see what you wanna see without much effort (otaku get their moe uguu shit the entire time, video games have relationship mechanics which essentially are just "talk to me about 10 times and we'll have sex"). Visual novels would be an exception maybe, but I have only ever played Katawa Shoujo, and even then only once, and don't plan on playing any more. then again i find it rather hard to empathize with most emotions and am not interested in most relationships thus i may not be the best candidate for a response here!

#14 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

@believer258: never seen the expendables but whilst I certainly like Die Hard I like more introspective movies more (my personal favorite movie is probably stalker) and I wouldn't put it in my top 10.

#15 Posted by Tesla (1923 posts) -

The problem is not many seem to be able to do romance stories well, or in an interesting manner.

It's all cookie cutter, hearts aflutter saccharine cute shit. The story almost always deals with the beginning, "honeymoon" phase of a relationship. My favorite romance stories don't follow those tropes. Like say the movies Blue Valentine and 500 Days of Summer, or the novel Fight Club (which I consider to be a love story between the unnamed narrator and Marla Singer).

#16 Posted by Brodehouse (9950 posts) -

Some of my favorite movies qualify as romance. I like dramadies and there's almost always some sort of love angle to it. Some of my favorite flicks might qualify; As Good As It Gets, High Fidelity, Sideways. When Harry Met Sally is probably my favorite straight up romcom. Say Anything is pretty good, a little saccharine.

But the majority of the big mainstream romcoms are just SO DULL AND DUMB. It's just this inoffensive mild humor, and characters that are just no engaging. Humor has to poke in order to poke fun, it can't just be "ha ha ha, I'm Kate Hudson, ha ha ha ha ha!" You can't see it but I'm sticking my fingers out in a kind of effeminate way while I say that. Just imagine it.

I really like when John Cusack is in a romcom, because he can usually play a guy who seems like a guy. He's a nice guy that women like, and he's a guy that men can relate to. As opposed to like... Entourage Guy in The Devil Wears Prada. That entire subplot might as well not even be there! Meaningless and dull love interest subplots, not just relegated to guy movies!

As for books, I wouldn't say Douglas Coupland writes romance, but there's usually subplots and they're usually well done. Hey Nostradamus! has this one relationship that is just heart rending.

#17 Posted by TheSouthernDandy (3872 posts) -

@Brodehouse: Hell yes High Fidelity that movie's so good.

A well written romance story is something I can get behind but the sappy stupid ones that pander to teenage girls are a whole different matter entirely.

#18 Posted by believer258 (11911 posts) -

@Animasta said:

@believer258: never seen the expendables but whilst I certainly like Die Hard I like more introspective movies more (my personal favorite movie is probably stalker) and I wouldn't put it in my top 10.

...and there you go. Men often seem to respond better to outward, physical things and romance doesn't have much of that. Except for the often-inevitable sex scene, which never shows more than a boob or something. Which, y'know, might've worked in the '80's, but we have the internet.

Meanwhile, the best romance movie ever made is actually The Terminator. Think about it.

#19 Edited by Animasta (14691 posts) -

@Brodehouse: I dislike most romcoms too... I think the only romance movie that qualifies as a romcom I like is but I'm a cheerleader which is kinda terrible but it's still pretty funny.

@believer258: well it's not like stalker is made for women or anything... it just doesn't have a whole lot of action and pretty much features russian dudes talkin philosophy whilst on a hunt for some mystical force

#20 Edited by D0tti (786 posts) -
@Brodehouse: I agree High Fidelity is a really awesome movie with romance in it, I love that movie. 
 
And to answer op, I don't mind chick flicks now and then, if they are good movies. Jerry Maguire is one off my fav films ever and i'm not afraid to say it.
#21 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

'Tis the airing out of emotions, something which clashes with the typical masculine image.

#22 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

@Video_Game_King: to be fair, the "typical" male enjoys one emotion: Anger :P

#23 Posted by MikkaQ (10288 posts) -

I like a little more scope to my books and movies than just focusing on the relationship between two people. It can be there, but there has to be more than just that. Straight romance is incredibly boring for anyone but the people falling in love.

#24 Edited by GreekTrojan (18 posts) -

The stigma thing is a large part. Other things include (keep in mind, like all things, these are generalizations and not 100% hard facts for every guy/girl):

1) that men tend to be more "logical" than "emotional" (not smarter I mean, just factual) so romance is often purely emotional

2) romance stories are often very geared towards women so tropes that are off putting to guys ("perfect" man falls for flawed woman, guys pull out all the crazy stops to beg for affection etc...)

3) men are more wired for sex, women for long term relationships, romance is more appealing to the long term. Young men aren't as interested and older/married men have had their fill already.

4)in the real world, romance is fun for women, work for men. A good life lesson for the youngins here but fair or not, men are still responsible for creating 100% of the romance/planning romance etc... Women get to sit back and enjoy for the most part. Lots of younger/less experienced guys tend to like romance more than experienced guy who know what a PITA real romance is (women often want/assume romance is spontaneous, most of the time it requires a lot of planning and work, unlike in media where random can and does happen all the time). Guys are much easier since as long as your attractive, generally fun to be around and occasionally do nice things (sex, cook, clean, ego boost etc...) than romance isn't really needed in reverse.

#25 Posted by Tearhead (2168 posts) -

I'd watch anything as long as it's good. I really liked Love Actually.

Also, anime romance is fucking dumb.

#26 Posted by KoolAid (936 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

I really like when John Cusack is in a romcom, because he can usually play a guy who seems like a guy.

I was gonna say: I love romance movies!

As long as that movie is High Fidelity.

#27 Posted by AlexW00d (6275 posts) -

I don't like 'em 'cause most romance-fiction isn't realistic, yet tries to act it. Or something.

#28 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

@Tearhead: anime romance is dumb on the whole but there are some that are awesome, such as the girl who leapt through time and... the girl who leapt through time

#29 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

@Animasta:

Typical human male. Up here (at least in Senastia; other Kingdoms handle things differently), emotions in general aren't encouraged to be shown unless in very specific circumstances. This applies to both genders.

#30 Posted by Bocam (3753 posts) -

@Animasta said:

@Tearhead: anime romance is dumb on the whole but there are some that are awesome, such as the girl who leapt through time and... the girl who leapt through time

That was originally a Japanese romance novel. I don't think that counts.

#31 Posted by granderojo (1788 posts) -

I don't accept your premise.

#32 Edited by Animasta (14691 posts) -

@Bocam said:

@Animasta said:

@Tearhead: anime romance is dumb on the whole but there are some that are awesome, such as the girl who leapt through time and... the girl who leapt through time

That was originally a Japanese romance novel. I don't think that counts.

to be fair, something like 70% of anime is based off of something anyway (most of the time manga, admittedly).

#33 Posted by Undeadpool (4942 posts) -

It's much more a perception thing than an actual thing, you notice that every lousy action movie still has a "romance" of sorts? Near everyone LIKES romance, it's just the delivery mechanism that tends to have a much more solid preference gap.

#34 Posted by Brodehouse (9950 posts) -
@Animasta I saw that movie. It has the girl who was in that TV show Grounded for Life.

I think all I care about with romcoms is they present characters who are interesting. When Harry Met Sally worked because it was fun to watch them play off each other. Optimist-v-pessimist, prude-v-slut, it was great, those characters are great together. If the core conflict is going to be as trite as 'they like each then they don't and he apologizes so they like each other again..!' you got to give me something else to enjoy. Let me ogle Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds naked bodies (YES BOTH). There, ticket justified.

I will say that action and horror video games have pretty much spoiled action and horror movies. I just think "why aren't I playing this with a controller?" Unlike romance and drama, because so far they've mostly been done as VNs and those are ... not of sterling quality.
#35 Posted by Icemo (642 posts) -

I imagine that there are a lot of males that enjoy content with romance as a main focus in it, and I'm talking about love stories that doesn't necessarily have sex in it. It's just that those people might be a bit more shy than the others so they don't stand out so much. There are also a lot of boys that read or watch romantic content because they want to have love in their lives but are unable receive it in real life because of various reasons, like being shy. There are so many different kinds of personalities that stereotypes are irrelevant.

#36 Posted by Synaptic (310 posts) -

It's just probability. There are tons of guys who like romance (probably not told in the same way as a female targeted story, and i don't mean that the guy version has tons of sexual content, I mean in the way the plot and characters are developed) but they aren't as common as guys who aren't really into it.

#37 Posted by ShaggE (6454 posts) -

I love a good rom-com, and a strong romance element can elevate a good story to great in my eyes. One thing I love about modern times is that a guy can openly enjoy "chick flicks" and most folks won't give a damn.

#38 Posted by WasabiCurry (422 posts) -

In a sense, romance could be different for everyone. I absolutely despise the entirety of the Twilight movies. My girlfriend loves them, which was unfortunate for me because I had to watch them as well.

On the flip side,

I deeply enjoyed the romance in Up. Especially the first fifteen minutes of the movie. However, my girlfriend doesn't seem that attach to it. I am just saying that romance can be different for a lot of folks out there. Just because some guys do not like soapy acting and eye goggling doesn't mean they are heartless.

#39 Posted by crusader8463 (14422 posts) -

I love me a good romance movie. One of my favourite anime of all time is Please Teacher which is just a big romance/love story. Maybe it's because I was raised by my mother so I ended up watching a lot of "chick flicks" and that I'm a hopeless romantic at heart, but I have no problem with love stories. I also have no problem talking about them in groups of people that other wise wouldn't, and if someone says something bad I just tell them to shut up and stop acting like a child. After I do others have pretty much always opened up and admitted that they too like something and then it snow balls from there and the guy trying to act like it's taboo looks like a fool.

That said, there are a lot of trope filled love story movies/shows that are terrible trash. However that's the same in any genre of film so you can't hold it against the whole genre Though I will be honest and say that in my experience it seems like love stories are one genre that has more crap then just about any other.

#40 Posted by Clonedzero (4200 posts) -

i like romance, i just find the traditional hollywood romance arch to be tedious.

they like each other, misunderstanding ON NO!, oh its ok they're back together yay! end.

#41 Posted by jacksmedulla (279 posts) -

I enjoy romances stories when they are done well. However, and this is especially true for video games, the majority of times romance stories are poorly written and dull, like soft-core porn without the porn.

#42 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

@WasabiCurry said:

In a sense, romance could be different for everyone. I absolutely despise the entirety of the Twilight movies. My girlfriend loves them, which was unfortunate for me because I had to watch them as well.

twilight is the worst book that has ever become popular.

THEYRE SO BAD. oh my god.

the last book was intensely funny though! the birth scene was so goddamn hilarious.

#43 Edited by The_Ruiner (1059 posts) -

I like elements of romance in any story...but a story about romance exclusively is just boring to me... I don't really care is these to people get together or not...

Also many Romances are poorly written to the point that they are just pretty people staring at each other and whispering... or awkward anime hugs that last forever... give me a good sci or action story with two likable characters who are into each other and I'm all for some romantic subplot... but that melodramatic "I can't live without you" shit is just too self indulgent for me.

#44 Posted by mikey87144 (1774 posts) -

@Animasta: I feel like making a point about this that might come across a bit rude so I'll just say that I also like Romance stuff but a lot of the ones that are more geared toward the ladies, as an extreme example lets use Twilight and anything written by Nicholas Sparks, are bad. Bad in the same way that the Transformers movies are bad.

#46 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

@mikey87144: eh, you're probably right in that the better ones are geared towards both

#47 Posted by Hailinel (24809 posts) -

I like romances,and I'm a dude. Not a comprehensive argument, but there you go.

#48 Posted by JasonR86 (9707 posts) -

There's a lot of reasons I imagine. For me personally I don't like how predictable most romance stories are. Plus most entertainment that I really enjoy have stories that are pretty fucked up. Most of the romance shows or movies I've seen are just so sweet and nice it bugs me. On top of all of that are the insane gender roles that are pushed in these stories. They are the worst. All of these things come to mind whenever I think of a romance story. That's not to say I have enjoyed a romance story or that there are romance stories out there that don't have any of the problems I mentioned. I just haven't seen many of those type of romance stories.

#49 Posted by 8Bit_Archer (452 posts) -

On the Contrary I love and sometimes prefer a good Romance story?

#50 Posted by Veektarius (4836 posts) -

Okay, there are a whole lot of definitions of 'romance' that are getting conflated here.

"Romance" as a genre euphemistically describes books about girls having sex (with guys, but it's about the girls). The reason that the guy component of this is not as marketable probably has to do with the fact that for most guys, a 10 minute video of a girl having sex is better suited to the uhhh.... 'ephemeral nature of male autoerotic arousal' (i.e. if a dude is jerking it, he doesn't need 500 pages before he's done)

'Romance' as a genre of movies is actually very niche and seems to generally lean foreign. I don't know that it's so much a female bias as it is a non-American bias. We generally aren't so...liberated? exhibitionist? about our passionate moments to enjoy watching others.

'Rom-coms' are generally oriented toward women. I don't think that it's necessarily a fact that men aren't into them, because when a romcom does feature a man, it can do pretty well. See "The 40-year old virgin", or hell, "Anchorman". Or, let's shoot back for a classic. "Groundhog Day" is totally a romantic comedy. It's just a matter of tone.

'Romance' as a component of a larger story that isn't a romance is among the most important component of any movie, whether it's for men or not. A shoot-em-up action flick where the guy doesn't get the girl is an anomaly, and romance can play a very important part in a great action movie. See "Casino Royale".

So in short, just because guys don't like the way romance is presented in your genre of choice doesn't support the argument that guys don't like romance.