10 Best Yaoi Anime Series of All Time, According to MyAnimeList

10 Best Yaoi Anime Series of All Time, According to MyAnimeList

Yaoi is among the most popular genres in anime. Yaoi are created by and targeted specifically for a female audience, and feature homoerotic relationships between male characters. The artworks are delicate and highly stylized, with androgynous or feminine men in highly dramatic and often exaggerated romances.


There are many yaoi works in the anime world, but not all are as popular or recognized as others. Nevertheless, a select few have some of the largest fan bases in the anime world and attract significant critical acclaim, as evidenced by their rankings on the famous database MyAnimeList.

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10/10 Junjou Romantica (2008) – 7.52

Subtitled “Pure Romance” in its English translation, Junjou Romantica focuses on the romance between eighteen-year-old Misaki Takahashi and twenty-eight-year-old Akihiko Usami. Although it features three other romances, the relationship between Misaki and Akihiko is the main concern of the series.

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Junjou Romantica received praise from fans ever since it debuted in manga form, and the good reception carried over to the anime. The plot attracted some controversy, mainly due to the power dynamic between the two characters, the excessive amount of sex, and the lack of story, but the loyal fanbase has kept it alive, inspiring several sequels and spin-offs.

9/10 Hybrid Child (2014) – 7.55

Hybrid child has one of the most original sci-fi concepts for an anime series, let alone a yaoi. It features three stand-alone short stories between a character and his hybrid child, an android that needs love and nurturing from its owner to grow.

The three stories are quite tragic, considering the unique nature of the Hybrid Child. Still, this unique setup allows for a series that centers more on the emotional bond between the couples than the physical expressions of their love. Like its titular creation, Hybrid child is truly one of the kings of the anime world.

8/10 Junjou Romantica 3 (2015) – 7.65

The third season of the popular Junjou Romantica the anime continues to explore the relationship between Misaki and Usagi. The plot takes place three years after the couple moved in together and features the arrival of a potential rival for Misaki’s affections. Love triangles can be great when done right, and Junjou Romantica making the most of its detour into the tropics.

Junjou Romantica 3 also features other fan-favorite couples, including Ryuuichirou Isaka and Kaoru Asahina and Nowaki Kusama, and Hiroki Kamijou. Additionally, the series introduces a fourth couple, although their seventeen-year age difference may make some people uncomfortable.

7/10 Sekaiichi Hatsukoi (2011) – 7.67

Workplace romances are one of television’s most enduring tropes. Sekaiichi Hatsukoi shows the relationship between the proud Ritsu Onodera and his editor-in-chief, the infamous Masamune Takano. The two have a past, being each other’s high school sweethearts, which left them emotionally scarred, making their dynamic all the more nuanced.

Sekaiichi Hatsukoi uses all the best tropes of the rom-com genre to deliver a truly compelling story. It may not break new ground, but its central romance is layered, with fans praising its emotional depth and mesmerizing quality.

6/10 Junjou Romantica OVA (2012) – 7.72

The Junjou Romantica empire returned in 2012 with the two-episode OVA of the same name. Released four years after season 2, the OVA offers three stories centered around the show’s central couple, with slice-of-life episodes of their ongoing relationship.

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Fans praised the OVA as a pleasant return to the world of Junjou Romantica, especially after a long absence. The OVA was a significant departure from the series’ previous formula, focusing on more “sweet” moments than the intense drama that made it famous.

5/10 Junjou Romantica 2 (2008) – 7.73

Season 2 of Junjou Romantica aired just three months after Season 1 and continues the central romance between Misaki and Usagi while expanding to cover other couples. Season 2 features more drama, comedy and passionate romance that fans have come to expect from this property.

Some fans criticized the season’s overly melodramatic tone — yes, Series 2 ups the ante in all departments, including the already over-the-top drama. The introduction of Usagi’s father, one of the worst parents in a romantic comedy and a romantic rival to his son’s relationship, sums up Junjou Romanticaits obligation to exaggerate. But fans of the story certainly won’t mind; that’s what they liked about it in the first place!

4/10 Sekaiichi Hatsukoi 2 (2011) – 7.86

The complicated romance between Ritsu and his editor, Masamune, continues in season 2 of Sekaiichi Hatsukoi. The show heightens the drama by introducing two other couples who also work at Masamune’s department, each with their own dilemmas and struggles.

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Most fans agree that Season 2 is an improvement over the already above-average first entry. Praise goes to the twists and turns in the couples’ story, with fans appreciating the show’s efforts to avoid familiar territory despite the book’s premise. Sekaiichi Hatsukoi have their fair share of toxic relationships, but it’s up to each individual fan to decide if that glorifies them.

3/10 Sekaiichi Hatsukoi OVA (2011) – 7.88

Premiere the same year as season 2, Sekaiichi Hatsukoi‘s OVA is a two-episode continuation of the show’s main story. Episode 1 shows Ritsu and Masamune’s high school romance, adding more context to their relationship, while Episode 2 is about Chiaki bringing Hatori to meet his family; it’s not going well.

Fans of the series praised the show for revisiting Ritsu and Masamune’s early relationship; In fact, some even think the OVA would have been better if it had just focused on their high school romance. Episode 2 received a slightly worse reception, with many considering it boring.

2/10 Sasaki To Miyano (2022) – 8.25

Storting stories are common in the romantic genre, and Sasaki to Miyano is the perfect example. It centers on the blossoming romance between Miyano, a shy student, and Sasaki, an upperclassman who begins to question his feelings for Sasaki.

Sasaki to Miyano focuses on a less problematic story than other yaoi series. Fans also praised its healthy quality and reliability. Most agree that the story is generic, but praise its depiction of young love, especially when the characters are unsure of their identities and sexual preferences.

1/10 Given (2019) – 8.34

Anime from 2019 Granted centers on the blossoming relationship between Ritsuka Uenoyama and Mafuyu Sato after the former fixes the latter’s guitar. Mafuyu then convinces Ritsuka to give him guitar lessons, bonding over their love of music and thus starting their romance.

Granted is the highest rated yaoi anime on MyAnimeList. Fans praised the seamless transition from page to screen while appreciating the animation and voice acting. However, there is some criticism about the slow burn, especially in the early episodes.

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