As 2021 came to a close I realised that while I’d watched more than a handful of romances I was a bit stuck as to who I thought the best anime couples for the year were. Largely because while some stories ended up not being so bad there were plenty of couples that didn’t really click for me.
Still, here are my five favourite anime couples from 2021 and as always I’d love it if my readers would throw their choices in the comments as that will help others find some cute anime couples to watch. That said, there will be some spoilers below for those who have not finished the anime.
Number 5: Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation (Rudy and Eris)
I’ll be the first to admit technically these two aren’t an official couple even at the end of part two despite getting physically more intimate than many anime characters get ever in an anime. However, Eris and Rudy have been together for a long time and endured a lot, particularly after the two found themselves flung to a totally different continent.
What I like about the two in Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation is that they are just two kids growing up and they make mistakes and they don’t know how to comfort the other even when they want to. I loved the scene after Rudy had met with his father and Eris wanted to help him but was completely flustered as to how. I also enjoyed seeing Rudeus’ reaction after he used his demon eye to finally beat Eris in a match and then how guilty he felt for feeling proud.
As much as there are some elements of Jobless Reincarnation that continue to put me a little bit off-side, the relationship that has grown between these two isn’t one of them because it really feels like a relationship that would have grown from the situation they’ve been through.
Number 4: Horimiya (Hori and Miyamura)
Initially I loved the meeting between Hori and Miyamura and the way the two felt very comfortable being themselves around each other. They were on the fast track to being one of my favourite anime couples of all time. And all things considered, they are still pretty adorable together however Miyamura loses so much of what seemed to define him early in the series and Hori, for some reason, occasionally asks him to verbally abuse her and it is clear he isn’t very comfortable with it.
If that situation had been handled with a bit more sophistication than perhaps these two would be higher on my list of anime couples from 2021 but as it stands Horimiya ended up being close but not exactly what I was looking for in a romance. As it stands though, it is an anime romance that is worth watching as despite its short comings there’s some genuinely good moments and you can see that while some of the ideas don’t get fleshed out in the anime that they have great potential.
Number 3: Taishou Otome Fairytale (Tamahiko and Yuzuki)
How does love start anyway? In Taishou Otome Fairytale it starts with a boy being crippled and sent away from his family and a girl being bought from her poor family and sent to marry him. That could have been the start of a pretty stagnant relationship of carer and patient but instead it was the start of a truly adorable anime couple.
Tamahiko and Yuzuki really are perfect for one another. Her positive and optimistic attitude brings him out of his depression and awakens the caring side in him that tries to stop her from overworking herself and reaches out to her when she’s in trouble. This anime has so many cavity inducing moments it would be hard to list them all but pretty much any moment where the two get to be together and have a moment to be honest with one another is enough to make your heart beat jump a little.
If being cute was enough to sell a story that Taishou Otome Fairytale would definitely have won in 2021 but as it stands these two are only number 3 on the list for cute anime couples.
Number 2: Banished From The Hero’s Party (Red and Rit)
2021 must be the year for anime couples that do more than just hold hands and blush at one another. Banished From The Hero’s Party gives us Red and Rit and while the anime itself was kind of meh the relationship between these two characters was anything but.
Rit encounters Red after he has set up his apothecary shop and decides to move in with him (to help of course) because she was already in love with him from when the hero’s party had helped her to save her kingdom. The two progress from living under the same roof to sleeping in the same bed, sharing a bath together and are generally far more physical than we normally get in these generic fantasy stories. Though that alone wouldn’t be enough to secure them the number 2 spot.
Where these two really do shine as an adorable anime couple is in their mutual trust and respect for the other and their skills. Red used to travel with the hero’s party and has a vast array of skills and knowledge even if he wasn’t the strongest warrior. Rit on the other hand is a powerful adventurer in her own right. Both of these characters understand the others strengths and weaknesses and they come through for each other when it is needed. Now that is a cute anime couple.
Number 1: Fruits Basket the Final Season (Tohru and Kyo)
After three seasons Tohru and Kyo finally ended up together in Fruits Basket. Not that it was too much of a surprise given Tohru’s declaration of being a cat fan way back in episode 1, but still with her timid nature and Kyo’s general lack of social skills it is still kind of a small miracle that these two ever progressed.
And it was so worth the wait. It was one of those moments where you weren’t sure whether you should be smiling, cheering or crying as these two adorable characters finally overcame so much emotional baggage to just let themselves be happy and with the person who makes them happy. What makes these two the best anime couple is that they are just such deserving people and they also have had the benefit of two previous seasons to do a lot of the groundwork for their relationship. 11 or 12 episodes doesn’t seem to be quite long enough to really delve into a deep romance.
Anyway, Tohru and Kyo are definitely my choice for best anime couple in 2021 and are pretty high on my list for best couple ever. But I’ll turn it over to the readers now.
Who are you favourite anime couples from 2021?
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