10 Historic and Iconic Boys Love Series: A Journey Through Time

Boys Love (BL) is a genre of fiction that depicts romantic and sexual relationships between men. It originated in Japan as yaoi, a term that refers to manga and anime that cater to female readers who enjoy seeing male characters in homoerotic scenarios. BL has evolved over the years and spread to other countries, especially in Asia, where it has become a popular form of entertainment and cultural expression.

Boys Love (BL) is a genre of fiction that depicts romantic and sexual relationships between men. It originated in Japan as yaoi, a term that refers to manga and anime that cater to female readers who enjoy seeing male characters in homoerotic scenarios. BL has evolved over the years and spread to other countries, especially in Asia, where it has become a popular form of entertainment and cultural expression.

If you are a fan of BL or curious about this genre, you might be wondering what are some of the best BL series to watch. There are hundreds of BL series out there, but not all of them are worth your time. Some are poorly written, poorly acted, or poorly produced, some are too clichéd, too unrealistic, too problematic or some are just plain boring.

To help you find the best BL series to watch, I have compiled 10 Historic and Iconic Boys Love Series recommendations that you should not miss. These are BL series that have made an impact on the genre and the fandom, either by being pioneers, innovators, or trendsetters, these are BL series that have high quality in terms of story, characters, acting, production, and social relevance, and why not BL series that will make you laugh, cry, swoon, and think.

Here are my 10 historic and iconic BL series recommendations:

Top ten iconic Boys Love Series: Takumi Kun

1. Takumi-kun Series (2007-2011)

The Takumi-kun Series is a Japanese BL movie franchise based on a manga by Shinobu Gotoh. It consists of five movies that follow the love story of Takumi Hayama and Gii Sakiyama, two students at an elite all-boys boarding school. The movies explore various themes such as bullying, trauma, friendship, jealousy, trust, and acceptance.

The Takumi-kun Series is one of the most popular and influential BL franchises in Japan. It is credited for launching the careers of many famous actors who played the main and supporting roles, such as Hamao Kyosuke, Daisuke Watanabe, Yukihiro Takiguchi, Taiki Naito, Keisuke Kato, Ryoma Baba, and Yuta Furukawa. It is also praised for its realistic portrayal of gay relationships and its positive message of love overcoming obstacles.

Top ten iconic Boys Love Series: Lovesick The series

2. Love Sick (2014-2015)

Love Sick is a Thai BL drama based on a novel by INDRYTIMES. It tells the story of Noh Phun and Phun Noh (yes, their names are confusing), two high school boys who pretend to be boyfriends to get rid of Noh’s admirer and Phun’s girlfriend. However, as they spend more time together, they start to develop real feelings for each other.

Love Sick is considered to be one of the first successful Thai BL dramas that sparked the boom of BL in Thailand. It is loved by fans for its cute and funny moments, its catchy soundtrack, its diverse cast of characters, and its realistic depiction of teenage life and sexuality. It also spawned a spin-off series called Love Sick Season 2 (2015), which continued the story of Noh and Phun as well as other couples.

Top ten iconic Boys Love Series: Junjou Romantica

3. Junjou Romantica (2008-2015)

Junjou Romantica is a Japanese BL anime based on a manga by Shungiku Nakamura. It consists of three seasons that follow three different couples: Junjou Romantica (Misaki Takahashi and Akihiko Usami), Junjou Egoist (Hiroki Kamijou and Nowaki Kusama), and Junjou Terrorist (Yoh Miyagi and Shinobu Takatsuki). The anime shows how these couples overcome various challenges and conflicts in their relationships.

Junjou Romantica is one of the most popular and longest-running BL anime in Japan. It is praised for its humor, drama, romance, and fan service and also known for its catchy opening and ending songs, its colorful animation, and its talented voice actors. It is a must-watch for any BL anime fan.

Top ten iconic Boys Love Series: Sotus

4. SOTUS (2016-2017)

SOTUS is a Thai BL drama based on a novel by BitterSweet. It tells the story of Kongpob Arthit and Arthit Kongpob (again, confusing names), two engineering students who are involved in a senior-junior system called SOTUS (Seniority, Order, Tradition, Unity, and Spirit). Kongpob is a freshman who challenges the strict rules and authority of Arthit, the head of the seniors. As they clash and compete, they also grow closer and fall in love.

SOTUS is one of the most successful and acclaimed Thai BL dramas of all time. It is praised for its realistic and mature portrayal of college life, its strong chemistry between the leads, its meaningful message of respect and equality, and its social impact on raising awareness and acceptance of LGBT issues in Thailand. It also spawned a sequel series called SOTUS S (2017), which followed the couple after graduation.

5. Yuri!!! on Ice (2016)

Yuri!!! on Ice is a Japanese sports anime that revolves around figure skating. It follows the journey of Yuri Katsuki, a Japanese skater who suffers from low self-esteem and anxiety after a disastrous performance at the Grand Prix Final. He meets his idol and crush, Victor Nikiforov, a Russian skater who becomes his coach and partner. Together, they aim to win the gold medal at the next Grand Prix Final.

Yuri!!! on Ice is not explicitly labeled as a BL anime, but it is widely regarded as one by fans and critics alike. It is praised for its stunning animation, its thrilling skating scenes, its diverse and likable characters, its catchy soundtrack, and its groundbreaking representation of a healthy and positive gay relationship in mainstream media. It also won numerous awards and accolades, such as the Tokyo Anime Award for Animation of the Year.

6. Addicted (2016)

Addicted is a Chinese BL web series based on a novel by Chai Jidan. It tells the story of Bai Luo Yin and Gu Hai, two high school boys who are forced to live together due to their parents’ remarriage. They start off as enemies, but soon develop a strong bond and fall in love.

Addicted is one of the most controversial and popular BL series in China. It is controversial because it was banned by the Chinese government for violating the censorship laws that prohibit the depiction of homosexuality on screen, but also popular because it gained millions of views and fans online who loved the story, the actors, the chemistry, and the romance. It also inspired many fan works, such as fan fiction, fan art, fan videos, and fan translations.

7. HIStory (2017-2020)

HIStory is a Taiwanese BL anthology series that consists of four seasons: HIStory: My Hero (2017), HIStory: Stay Away From Me (2017), HIStory: Obsessed (2017), HIStory 2: Right or Wrong (2018), HIStory 2: Crossing the Line (2018), HIStory 3: Trapped (2019), HIStory 3: Make Our Days Count (2019), and HIStory 4: Close to You (2020). Each season features different stories and couples that explore various aspects of love, such as friendship, family, workplace, crime, school, sports, etc.

HIStory is one of the most innovative and diverse BL series in Taiwan. It is praised for its high production value, its creative storytelling, its engaging characters, its hot chemistry, and its social relevance. It also showcases different types of love stories that cater to different tastes and preferences.

8. TharnType (2019-2020)

TharnType: The Series is a Thai Boys Love series based on a popular novel. It follows the story of Tharn, a openly gay music major, and Type, a homophobic engineering major. The series delves into their complicated relationship, as Tharn tries to break down Type’s prejudices and misconceptions about homosexuality. With its intense and emotional storyline, “TharnType: The Series” explores themes of personal growth, acceptance, and the power of love overcoming societal barriers.

9. Gameboys (2020)

“Gameboys” is a groundbreaking Filipino Boys Love web series that takes place in the world of online gaming. It revolves around the virtual relationship between Cairo, a talented gamer, and Gavreel, a popular live streamer. As they navigate their virtual connection and form a deep bond, their lives begin to intertwine offline as well. “Gameboys” explores themes of love, friendship, and the complexities of modern relationships in the digital age. With its unique format and relatable storytelling, the series has gained international acclaim and a dedicated fanbase.

Top ten iconic Boys Love Series: Love By Chance

10. Love by Chance (2018)

“Love by Chance” is a Thai Boys Love series that revolves around the lives of several university students. It follows the story of Pete, a shy freshman who is thrown into a series of unexpected encounters with Ae, a popular and outgoing senior. As their paths continue to cross, they discover a deep connection and navigate the challenges of falling in love. “Love by Chance” explores themes of fate, destiny, and the power of unexpected connections.

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