Shonen Demographic

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
(Redirected from Shounen)

MOD: To be consistent with Shojo, the category should be named "Shonen Demographic".

Manga demographic target groups:

  • Kodomomuke: children age 10 or younger
  • Shonen: "tween" or young-teen boys
  • Shoujo: "tween" or young-teen girls
  • Seinen: older-teen boys or young men (in modern usage, up to age 40)
  • ヤングレディース (literally "young ladies", does not appear to have a Western name): older-teen girls or young women
  • Redikomi (literally "ladies' comics"): women who are older than the audience for ヤングレディース
  • Josei: females age 18-40 (an academic and Western-fan term, not in general use in Japan)

Other Japanese comic styles:

  • Gekiga (literally "dramatic pictures"): adults

Shonen manga is manga published in Japanese magazines aimed primarily at tween and teenaged boys. Shonen anime is anime based on shonen manga. It is not a genre.

The Other Wiki tells us that the word can be pronounced with either a short or long "sho", so "shonen" and "shounen"/"shōnen" are equally correct romanizations of 少年. For ease of typing on a US English keyboard, and to distinguish the demographic from the magazines, we will use "shonen" here.

Japanese fiction aimed at this demographic tends to be focused more on "action" than relationships, with romance generally either perfunctory or played for comedy.[please verify] Physical combat is a common element,[please verify] and the cast is predominantly male.[please verify]

Shonen series were the first to be brought over en masse to the Western world, because it was the closest match to what was being aired by Western networks at the time (nearly all popular Western animation either is geared towards males or has Multiple Demographic Appeal). Thus, it makes up much of the popular American perception of anime.

In Japan, "shonen" is a designation of the stories that were published in a particular class of magazines,[please verify] not a label that describes the genres of the stories in those magazines.[please verify] That leads to series that are different from the typical shonen style but still count as examples, and series that follow all the typical shonen tropes but aren't shonen because they didn't originate from a shonen magazine.

Contrast Shojo, which is the tween and teenaged girl demographic; Seinen, which is the men demographic ; and Josei, which is the women demographic.

Examples of Shonen Demographic include:

General Examples

Other Examples in Shonen Jump

Non-Weekly Shōnen Jump Examples