For those of you who aren’t familiar with fan lingo, “One True Pairing” is a term used in fandoms to describe a person’s favorite “pairing” (i.e. romantic couple).
It’s Valentine’s Day today, I thought I’d take the time to post about my five favorite pairings – canon or otherwise – from some of my favorite anime/manga and video games (these five are presented in no particular order). Posting about more than one OTP may seem to go against the definition (One True Pairing, hello?), but hey, I think fangirls often have one OTP per fandom anyway. :p
There are HUGE SPOILERS in my write-ups for the pairings here, so please proceed with caution!
Ayumi Yamada and Takumi Nomiya from Honey and Clover
Oh, Ayu. My heart broke for her multiple times throughout the Honey and Clover series. Watching her suffer from her unrequited love for Mayama was just terrible. She even tortured herself (the way most forlorn lovers do) by accepting a job at Harada Design, which forced her to watch Mayama and the woman he loved work together and made her even more depressed.
And then there was Nomiya.
Nomiya, who loved her and tried to comfort her and pull her away from the vortex of pain she threw herself into as best he could. Nomiya, who drove for nine hours straight when he realized that Ayu was pretending not to cry while he was talking to her on the phone. Nomiya, who did all this despite the fact that Ayu was barely even showing interest in him.
It was also cute how Ayu was so caught up in everything that she had a hard time accepting that Nomiya was doing all of that just for her. Toward the end of the series, though, it was pretty obvious that she was starting to figure it out and that she might even give Nomiya a chance.
Mukuro and Hiei from Yuu Yuu Hakusho
Ah, these two. If you’ve only watched the Yuu Yuu Hakusho anime, you probably would be weirded out by my listing them here as one of my favorite couples. If you’ve read the manga, you’ll probably understand me a bit more. It took just one specific chapter in the manga to make me love this pairing (chapter 172).
Long story short, Hiei found out that a slave trader named Chikou had been using Mukuro as a sex toy since she was a child, and that Chikou had secretly imprinted false happy memories into Mukuro’s brain to prevent her from taking revenge on him. Hiei went out of his way to find out about the false memories, capture Chikou, and bring him back to Mukuro for torture and possibly execution. He said that he did so to “free” her from Chikou, and I thought that was very sweet, especially considering Hiei’s personality.
Hildegard von Krone and Siegfried Schtauffen from the Soul series
Do I really need to explain this pairing? They’re both from the Holy Roman Empire, they’re both noble warriors, they both have the most awesome armor I’ve ever seen in the Soul series of games, and Hilde was the only one who went out of her way to grant Siegfried the forgiveness he needed all this time.
Commander Shepard (Female) and Garrus Vakarian from the Mass Effect series
If you’ve read the recent entries (and comments!) about Garrus in my blog, you’ll have to have seen this one coming. :p I think Garrus is really the best romance option for female Shepard. Sure, he’s not human, but look at the alternatives: Kaidan Alenko barely had any personality in ME and was “too angry” to trust Shepard in ME2, Jacob is boring and ugly, and Kelly is just too nice and loving that I can’t imagine her being happy with a danger-magnet/badass soldier like Shepard. The other alien romance, Thane Krios is just too jam-packed with emotional baggage that I don’t know whether to pat him on the shoulder or just shoot him in the face to get it over with.
Garrus, apart from being the sexy turian badass with a hot voice (ILU Brandon Keener) that he is, has stuck with and trusted Shepard throughout the entire thing, from Sovereign’s attack on the Citadel to the suicide mission at the Collectors’ homeworld. He trusted Shepard to help him deal with Sidonis, which was something completely personal. He respected her so much to the point that he allowed her personality to influence his own. There’s just such a strong bond of trust and camaraderie between Shepard and Garrus that it’s not very hard to see how that bond can blossom into something even more than just friendship.
This is mostly based on my Fem!Shep’s personality (and my personal preferences), of course. I know other ME/ME2 players will have different opinions based on their own Shepard’s personalities.
Motoko Kusanagi and Hideo Kuze from Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd GIG
Undoubtedly my most favorite pairing of all time. Sorry, Batou x Motoko shippers; I really believe Kuze is the one for her. Motoko and Kuze went through that terrible experience of being the only two survivors of a plane crash together, and even Motoko admitted that Kuze was the “first boy she liked”. As a kid, Kuze was completely paralyzed except for his left hand (and his face), but he went through the trouble of mastering how to make paper cranes with just one hand to represent his fervent wish for Motoko to get better. When Motoko found out about it, she promised she’d learn how to fold paper cranes with just one hand to return the favor, and she did. That is, by far, one of the sweetest things I have ever seen.
…and I still remember how Kuze managed to kick Batou’s ass in one-on-one combat. That just served to cement my belief that Kuze is the one for Motoko even more.
Other pairings I like:
- Robin and Amon from Witch Hunter Robin
- Hitomi Kanzaki and Van Fanel from Vision of Escaflowne
- Riza Hawkeye and Roy Mustang from Full Metal Alchemist
- Yoko and Kamina from Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann
- Fuuko Kirisawa and Raiha from Flame of Recca
- Feldt Grace and Lockon Stratos (Neil Dylandy) from Mobile Suit Gundam 00
- Saya Otonashi and Hagi from Blood+
- Tabris (female City Elf) and Alistair from Dragon Age: Origins
- Quistis Trepe and Squall Leonhart from Final Fantasy VIII