Guys and girls, why do women like yaoi?
OK so first off, I am a yaoi fan, I love it, but I have been thinking of reasons why it has become such a phenomenon in the past few years. I have come up with a few theories and would like all opinions. Some of these are my own thoughts based on myself, while the others are not what I personally think, but what I have heard from other yaoi fans. Not all the points will be true to all fans. Anyway, here are my thoughts:
1: It is different to 'normal' romance/sex. Shojo can get boring after a while.
2: Uh... well, they are GUYS, and generally, straight women like guys. Enough said.
3: As number 2 states, they are guys, this can make things more appealing for women as there is no annoying girl in the way. Also, because of that it may make women feel more comfortable and not view any character as a threat.
4: Women can be turned off by seeing a woman. Straight women are not turned on by other females, so why would you want to see them naked?
5: Women have only recently become aware of their sexuality, and are breaking the stereotypes of "women don't and shouldn't watch/read porn".
6: Because of number 5, yaoi has become a phenomena to women around the world. There is no porn aimed at women, bar a few erotic books. Yaoi is the only thing aimed at women (apart from slash). It is made by women for women. That doesn't mean it can not be read by males too, but it's target audience was originally, and still is women.
Now as to the contents of yaoi..
7: With the set up of the seme and uke, it can give women two different types of guys, and depending on the type of guy you like, you may put yourself in the place of the seme or uke. (although for me personally, I don't like the 'ukes'. Like, really don't like them. They annoy me. The whole seme/uke thing annoys me generally. I don't like girly guys and why does there HAVE to be a definite seme and uke!?)
8: The opposite to number 7, some fans may not do that, they may just feel like a third person, and as such detach themselves from the characters and just enjoy 'watching' lol.
9: Many yaoi have good plots.
10: On the other side, many yaoi (especially some doujinshi) don't have plots. Just pure smut.
11: As 10 stated, some can be just pure porn. And personally I don't care for plot. Just gimmie sex. I like it as smutty and graphic as possible. I like yaoi for the steamy sex scenes. (Yes I admit it, I think there may be quite a few yaoi fans (not all) who do like it purely for the smut, but don't seem to admit it. ._., That is why I am saying it. Since people seem to tip toe around this part).
12: However, I like doujinshi better because many doujinshi are fan works and as such, I can feel closer to the characters, even if it is just smut.
Hmm, well I guess you could say that yaoi is a fetish. And really, many fetishes can be considered weird to those who don't like it.
One thing I have noticed is yaoi manga generally has more of a plot than yaoi doujinshi, and I have noticed that the sex scenes are a lot more censored in yaoi manga. Nothing is very... detailed. I am very picky when it comes to yaoi manga. Actually, the only yaoi manga I have found I like are Mizukami Shin's military yaoi. That is why I generally stick to doujinshi lol.
Doujinshi a few years ago was like the yaoi manga today, maybe a little less graphic. But now in the few years I have been collecting doujinshi, I have noticed that the sex scenes have become VERY graphic, maybe just as graphic and detailed as hentai, if not more so in some cases.
And some yaoi doujinshi is pure porn. I guess that is because there is more free reign in doujinshi. It is not official, so you don't have to worry about the producers breathing down your neck.
In doujinshi, you have seen those stupidly tiny bar censors, right? *sweatdrop* Where in yaoi manga, generally you usually can't see much, if anything and if you actually do, it is usually whitened out or not detailed or something.
Another thing I have to mention that seems to be interesting is that at the same time yaoi was getting popular in Japan, in the Western world slash was becoming popular too. Both separate from one another, but very similar.
I think that is all I have to say.. I don't know if I missed a few points. But if anyone else has other points to make it would be great to hear them.
And I guess I just view sex differently. I am pretty open about it. I see nothing wrong with depictions of sex. I don't see it as wrong at all. I also don't see the taboo in sex either. I don't see sex and porn as 'obscene'. A naive view? Maybe, maybe not. I just don't see what is so wrong with it.
Speaking of which, another reason I just remembered is that I hear some women like yaoi for the "taboo". Since it is still quite controversial in society.