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By: Vrai Kaiser February 26, 20190 Comments

For one thing, they can learn not to be so generic. People will make fun of some of the 90s ones for all being the same premise, but I think even some of those arguments are petty and trivial. I remember an anime magazine reviewer lambasted Yona for being too much like Fushigi Yuugi. (Which to me, came off of misogynist and racist given the claims and feeling, but that's a whole other argument.) Fushigi Yuugi is a manga first, and Haruka is a game first, and while both are quite similar as far as "is an isekai with historical, Asian setting (Chinese, Japanese, etc), they're wildly different no matter which version it is. Same for Magic Knight Rayearth, Escaflowne or even something like El-Hazard. I really miss the fact that there were so many female-led isekai, but it bugs me even more now that the male-led ones are becoming so vapid, when they're not being generic. The fact that a reviewer had to point that Shield Hero basically makes its universe work like a MMO, even though it is a fantasy world, really says a lot about the level of imagination, effort and low-level world-building going into most of these LNs and their adaptions. That gets more wild when you look at what starts as a maybe decent LN and each adaption gets worse in its attempt to pander to the right-wing, anti-SJW kind of otaku. Happened with Goblin Slayer, and I feel the weird, inconsistent changes to Shield Hero are probably a reflection of the same. (And again, at the expense of any form of effort, or even charm and personality.) In the 90s isekai, I tended to enjoy the romance and harem elements. They weren't always handled well, but I was engaged by them. Even when it was creating a shipping war or making me mad. And while I may not ever grow to like Miaka, I still found Fushigi Yuugi entertaining for a long time. I do think that as the times become more progressive, it probably is getting easier for creators to include queer and other elements, but I do also recall there being more brown characters in 90s and early 00s content, and nowadays. . . well, I think the shift in modern moe has a lot to do with the lack of brown (esp. female) characters, or the even more narrow tropes and visuals they're allowed.

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