They say that in times of uncertainty, go with what you know. Well, I know about harem shows. A lot. More than I should. Enough that if the wife asks, I’d lie and feel bad about it. But this is not about the trust issues in my marriage. This is about what harems I recommend for beginners.
Ouran Host Club
Ouran Host Club is a pretty easy harem show to get into. It’s basically a show were five rich boys get the female protagonist to join their “host” club. This host club’s task is to entertain the female student at their school, thus the comedic situation. What Ouran Host Club does well is exploring each of the characters enough to make them engaging. A harem show lives and dies by its cast of love interests, and Ouran has a good mix or silly, serious, sweet, and charming love interests. It’s easy to watch and as good of a start as any.
KonoSuba is a great isekai harem show because you don’t realize it’s a harem show until you get into it. The reason is because the protagonist, Kazuma, does not enjoy his situation at all. He is surrounded by a gaggle of beautiful women, and hates every minute of it. Why? Because they all have horrible personalities that kill all his attraction to them. One is the useless goddness that got him stuck in a new world, one is a mage that blows stuff up every day, and the other is a knight with a masochist kink. It’s a great harem for people who don’t want to watch a harem show.
This anime is about a homeless girl whose taken in by a family that just happens to be populated with very handsome men. Each more handsome than the last. The family is also a bit dysfunctional. So what follows is a story of this genuinely good person winning over each family member through her empathy and kindness. Each family member has their own hang ups and worries, making them an interesting cast to get to know. And while not all the elements are the best, its worth a watch for newbies.
I’ll probably shill Tenchi Muyo till my last day because it’s the anime that started this site. But the reason I recommend it to newcomers is because it’s not that bad. As a harem show, it was kinda too early to adopt some of the riske troupes of the genre. There’s still fan service, but not to the nth degree that most shows have. If anything, the cousin lovin’ is what would turn most people off (Ayeka is Tenchi’s great aunt). I’m just saying that you could go worse than starting with a show about aliens pirates, princesses, and cops living on a monk’s farm.
Let’s look behind the curtain a little. It was a little hard to find harem show that a beginner would enjoy. Not because there aren’t any harem still around. Throw a rock and you”ll hit a 12 episode show about some adventurer surrounded by smoking hot babes. That’s not the point. But a lot of shows are fun of fan service and are basically soft-core porn. Which I’m all for. Live your kink! But not everyone is down with that. What Defrag! represents is that subgenre of harem where it’s still a protagonist surrounded by an all female supporting cast, but not a lot of sex happens. There’s still fan service, but a lot of the humor comes from the protagonist reacting to the female characters’ shinanigans. And honestly? Those are the best kinds of harem shows.
Harems for “Advanced” Viewers
High School DXD
Heaven’s Lost Property
To Love Ru